Just One Kiss
Chapter 1 - Beginning
by Cynthia & KrazieKat

Legal Disclaimer: This is a work of fanfiction. The characters within are the property of people who are not us. They have no idea of how lucky they are.

Author's Note 1: Yes, I assisted in the writing of a Kenkeru. Stop falling over.

Author's Note 2:*points to Cyn* She wanted to do a Kenkeru. That's all I have to say.

From Us Both: We're putting this out in parts. One part a week. We don't know how long this will be.

Pairings: Light Kenkeru here, as well as light Daiori.

Final Note: Iori is not 9 years old in this story, he's the age of the others. If you blast us for having a nine year old in a relationship, we will laugh at you now. In many ways this is an AU. But isn't all fanfic, in some way?

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The spire exploded in a massive wave of light and sound, almost blotting out what Takeru was saying to Hikari. "So I'm going to do mine on the Edo period."

The brunette looked up at him with confusion in her eyes. "TK! I thought we were going to work together!"

"When did I say that?" The blonde glanced back at her, knowing for a fact he hadn't said anything about working with her on their history project.

She shrugged casually. "You didn't. But of course you were. All the others are already paired off."

"Say what?" He couldn't believe his ears.

"The others have already paired off. Daisuke and Iori are working together, Miyako and another girl in class are together, so that leaves me and you." It was her matter of fact tone of voice that started to get on his nerves. "Unless you wanted to work with someone else in class."

Takeru's eyes flickered to where Iori and Daisuke were watching Digmon and FlameDramon take down another spire a short distance away. Their hands were lightly touching, and he could see more than just friendship in the way they were looking at each other.

Hikari kept on talking. "They told us yesterday, TK, weren't you listening?" She blinked at him when he let out a massive sigh. "What's up? Don't you want to work with me anymore?"

"No, as a matter of fact, I don't!" Takeru couldn't rein in his temper any longer as everything he'd been frustrated with over the last few weeks suddenly broke free of his tight control. "I'm sick and tired of everyone, including you, assuming that I've got to work with you whether I like it or not! Believe it or not, Child of Light, there are other people in the cosmos besides you!"

Hikari stared at him in shock. "I didn't mean anything by it, TK... I'm sorry."

"No kidding." he growled. "I'm out of here." He turned his head and glanced up at Pegasusmon, calling out, "I'm going for a walk, I'll be back later, you can wait with the others!"

He could feel the others staring after him as he walked off, and heard Daisuke ask Iori, "What was that about?" The emerald-eyed boy shrugged.

"You got me!"

* * *

Takeru didn't stop his stormy little rampage until he was quite a ways from the others, in a beautiful valley divided by a clear river that spilled out from a waterfall. He slid down beside it, taking his shoes off and slipping his feet into the cool water. I don't care if anyone bothers me. I don't want them to, but I don't care... I just want to be alone...

He stared into the stream for several minutes, then sighed. "I am so sick of being taken for granted. TK and Kari, Kari and TK. We're not even teenagers yet and people already talk about us like we're an old married couple!"

"Well, you two already argue like one." The voice came from behind him and was sickeningly familiar. Takeru snapped his head around to see the Digimon Emperor standing there gazing at him. Ken put up a hand before he could get up. "I'm not here to attack, I'm here to sympathize."

Takeru glared. "What would you know about it, Ichijouji?"

"You're doing the same thing right now that they're doing with you and Hikari," Ken reminded him. "Assuming."

The blonde glared at him for another moment, then sighed and sat back down. "Pull up a rock, I don't have my Digimon, so I certainly can't stop you."

"If you haven't noticed, none of my slaves are here. I promise, for today, right here, no tricks, no dark rings, no twisted plots. Sometimes even an evil genius needs someone to listen too."

Takeru glanced up and around; if any of Ken's slaves were here, they were certainly keeping themselves well hidden. He gave a quick nod, and Ken appeared to take that as more permission, since he sat down on a nearby rock, pulled off his glasses, and sighed.

"So what's your problem with the cosmos at large?" Takeru asked after a few quiet moments.

Ken shrugged. "I'm tired of everyone assuming that I always have some plot, some device, some scheme on my mind. Can't a guy just want someone to talk to?" His violet eyes trailed over the slowly moving water almost affectionately. "Even if the company is cute?" He noticed Takeru's blush and continued as if he hadn't. "Actually, this is one of my favorite places to come, if I'm tired of being the Digimon Emperor for a while."

"It's really beautiful." Takeru breathed, not noticing that Ken was looking directly at him when he nodded in agreement. The blonde kicked his feet in the water restlessly and sighed. "It's like I'm only supposed to be with her, like it's set in stone and I'm just marching on to a wedding and a life I'm not even all that sure that I want!"

"Sounds like my family. When they found out that what Osamu had to work for, I understood easily." Ken nodded again as Takeru indicated he wanted to know more. "My older brother was a genius and he was always getting the attention, until he died in a car accident. Then mom and dad found me looking over Osamu's books and found out that I actually understood the stuff in there. I was six at the time, and Osamu had been eleven."

Takeru's eyes widened; he'd never even known Ken had a brother, much less a genius, even less that he had died! Ken ran his fingers through his spiky hair and sighed. "So what's your gripe, other than everyone pairing you off with 'oh so flawless' Hikari?"

"For one thing, I've got an older brother who is so perfect and popular that even though I love him, I want to smack him half the time." As Ken burst out laughing, Takeru glared at him. "What??"

The Emperor chuckled. "Just amused at how much similarity there is in our lives. I felt the same way about Osamu when he was alive."

"Yamato has every girl in school, and I mean in every school, not just his, trailing after him." The blonde snickered. "They don't know it, but they've been out of luck for the last four years."

Ken raised an eyebrow. "Oh?" He didn't need to; he already knew about Yamato and Taichi being an item. I hope that carries over to you...

"He and Taichi have been together since just after all that mess with Apocalymon." Takeru rolled his eyes. "I was in the next room when they got together." He cleared his throat. "And I quote I came so close to death, Yama-chan, that I knew I couldn't go on without telling you how much I love you!" He altered his voice just a little and continued on in an uncanny rendition of Yamato's tones. "Oh, Tai-chan, I know just how you feel!"

Ken stared at him for a few moments, then burst out into genuine laughter; Takeru had done a perfect imitation of the two older Digidestined. "I have to say this... God, how cheesy!"

Takeru rolled his sapphire eyes. "Tell me about it. As for what happened next... let's just say it's a good thing my mom wasn't home that night."

"I see." Ken smirked. This was going far better than he'd really had a hope for. The Child of Hope was not only growing more comfortable around him, he was almost treating him as if they were friends!

The other boy sighed and leaned back some against a rock. "And then there's Daisuke." Equal parts longing and sadness mixed in his voice as he uttered the name.

"What about Daisuke?"

"Nothing much, really." Takeru shrugged. "It's just that I thought for a while I... well... kind of liked him." He made a face. "Then two days ago I caught him and Iori snoozing behind the school." At Ken's raised eyebrow, he continued, "They weren't exactly wearing a school uniform, if you catch my drift."

"I do." Ken agreed. "But at least he knew you existed."

Takeru sighed. "Not the way I wanted. Yesterday I asked him about it. He said... I thought you were in love with Hikari." The thought of that made him a little sick actually.

"Better than my case." Ken said. "Sometimes I want him so badly I want to just reach out and take him. But he's not the type of plant you can just cut free and then replant where you want in your garden."

Takeru chuckled. "Nice metaphor there."

"Oh, wait till you hear more. If I want to remove him from where he is, I have to gently cultivate him, hoping he'll set roots down in his new home."

"But what if he doesn't?"

Ken smiled. "Unlike a plant, which would die if I fail, I'd let him go. But I don't fail, I merely have setbacks. Small ones."

Takeru chuckled again. "You're pretty confidant." He had to admit, this was kind of fun. Ken was a lot more complex than he'd ever thought he'd be.

"It's rather necessary in my line of work," Ken smirked at him and Takeru grinned.

"I wouldn't know. I've always been on the other side." The blonde responded. Ken grinned at him.

"You're in the same line of work, Takeru."

The Child of Hope looked up at him. "No one calls me that." He didn't seem upset that his 'enemy' was calling him by his full name; he was just stating a simple fact.

"Exactly why I call you that," Ken told him. "Out of respect. The older Chosen Children still see you as the little child they always had to rescue. I don't."

Takeru blushed a deep cherry red. "R... respect?"

"I do respect you, Takeru," Ken repeated quietly, and the blonde's blush deepened even more, causing Ken to chuckle.

The Child of Hope glanced around for a moment, looking incredibly nervous. "I... probably should go back... they'll be looking for me... soon."

Ken glanced down, his voice so quiet Takeru almost didn't hear him. "I know. But... can I ask for one small favor before you go?"

"What?"

The blue-haired genius blushed as he murmured. "Kiss me?" Takeru stared at him in surprise, then nodded slowly.

"All right."

He leaned over to Ken and gently brought their lips together. The Emperor deepened it gently, but nothing more, and Takeru responded in kind. Once they finally broke apart, in the need for air, Takeru stared, breathing hard. "W... wow."

Ken nodded as his breathing slowly came back under control. "You better go... I... I think I heard your friends calling."

The blonde lifted his head and looked around. It only took a moment to hear the faint echoes of his name on the wind, and he sighed. He glanced back at Ken and blushed again. "Umm... iif you're... not busy... tomorrow night... would you like to meet... back here? Maybe talk some more?"

Ken nodded and offered his own suggestion. "If you ever need someone to talk to, I'm available. I'll keep an eye on the valley. If I see you here alone, I'll do the same."

Takeru agreed. "I won't tell anyone you were here." He didn't think any of them would understand, anyway. Something had stirred within him as he and Ken had talked, something far beyond the inevitable bond of enemies. This was something different... something far different.

"I'll see you later, Takeru." Ken smiled, and his new friend nodded.

"I'll see you later, Ken." The two of them exchanged smiles; both knowing the violet-eyed genius would see Takeru far more than the blonde would see him, from to his observation of the Digiworld. Ken pulled his sunglasses back on and headed to where his AirDramon waited just out of sight.

He smiled to himself as he leaped on and began the trip back to his fortress. "The cultivation has begun."

Takeru headed back to where he could hear the others calling for him, and much to his nonsurprise, Hikari was the first one he met and called out to him. "TK! You're all right! Koushirou said that there were some strange signals coming from where you were!"

"Of course I'm all right." Takeru had never felt this all right in his life. Everything was just... perfect. "Why wouldn't I be?"

Miyako looked worried. "You left Pegasusmon behind. We were afraid that you'd gotten jumped or something!"

His smile was soft and tender and full of mystery. "No, I'm fine." Takeru's mind reached back to the kiss with pleasure. "More than fine, Miyako... a lot more."

To Be Continued

 

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