Disclaimer: I don't own Digimon. Last time to say that for this fic thank goodness!

Lessons In Friendship

Chapter 10: Friends Who Matter

Davis sank to the ground, his arms hanging limply at his sides. He was in shock, to say the least, and his head was spinning so fast it was making him feel dizzy.

Did he really just say all of that, or is this just another one of his lies?

"You're lying," he mumbled, unable to look at his golden-haired friend. He knew his voice was trembling, but there was nothing he could do to mask his emotions. T.K. just had that kind of effect on people, whether you wanted him to or not.

"Davis, do you honestly think I would lie about something like this? Have you ever known me to lie to you before?" T.K. asked quietly, sliding off the bench to sit on the grass across from him, a gentle smile overtaking the blond's handsome features.

"No...but that doesn't mean you wouldn't."

"Davis, he's telling the truth," Kari interrupted, causing both boys to look up at her in surprise. The female Digidestined was smiling, despite the concern in her amber brown gaze, and her hands were folded neatly in her lap. "Yolei and I heard the whole thing. Every word T.K. said is true."

Yolei nodded vigorously in agreement, and surprisingly enough, she gave him a sympathetic smile.

Should I believe them? Wait, what am I saying. These guys are my friends. We've been through a lot of crazy stuff together and they've never let me down before. How can I doubt them, after all they've done for me? Get a grip, Motomiya. This isn't some huge conspiracy to make you look like a fool or something. Yolei and the others aren't like that. They're not like Domu. They're better people than that jerk.

Ignoring the argument waging back and forth inside his head, Davis remained silent, his eyes focusing on the tiny blades of grass between his fingers. He wanted to believe his friends, but he wasn't sure if he could. Kari was always sticking up for T.K., that much was a known fact, since they were such good friends, and Yolei...well, Yolei never wasted an opportunity to get a good laugh at him, even if it was more out of fun than an excuse to be mean to him. How was he supposed to trust either one of them?

Great, now I'm suspicious of my friends. What's wrong with me today. They wouldn't hurt me on purpose. Then again, I used to think that about T.K. too...

"Davis, hey...Come on, look at me."

Davis slowly lifted his head, and he found himself gazing into T.K.'s bright blue eyes. There was sincerity in the blond's gaze that he had never seen directed at him before, but underneath that sincere expression, he could see the strain of anxiety as well.

Maybe he is telling the truth. He doesn't sound like he's lying to me, and he is right about one thing. He's never lied to me before...

"Davis," T.K. said quietly, reaching out to put a hand on his arm, "if I didn't care about you, then why am I still here? I could have ditched you a long time ago, but I didn't. Do you know why? It's because even though we fight a lot, we're always there for each other when it counts. You'll always be special to me, even if you might not always see it."

Davis opened his mouth to say something, but for the first time in his life, he had no clue what to say. He was speechless. T.K. had never said something like that to him before. At least, not that he could remember.

He sounds so...so honest. Oh man, I think my eyes are starting to sting. If I start blubbering like a little kid in front of him, I'm never going to show my face in public again!

"You don't mean that," he whispered, his voice barely a croak.

"Davis," T.K. sighed, shaking him gently by the shoulders. "I never say things I don't mean."

"That's true," Cody agreed, smiling from his seat next to Yolei.

"Besides," T.K. added, looking amused, "if you don't believe me, I suggest you take a good look at Domu's face the next time you see him. That should be convincing enough for you!"

To his own surprise, Davis found himself starting to laugh. "I'd love to see Domu's face right about now!"

"You mean...you believe me?" T.K. asked timidly, avoiding his eyes.

Davis hesitated before saying, "One question. Do you really think I'm the bravest person you know?"

"You heard that?"

T.K. stared at him in surprise, and Davis waved off his golden-haired friend's response with a flip of his hand. "Just answer the question."

"You came to me and allowed me to speak, didn't you?" T.K. asked, smiling softly at him. "That took some nerve, especially considering how the situation must have appeared to you."

He means it. He really means it! Stupid T.O. Why does he always have to make me care so much...

But really, he should have seen it coming. This was T.K. after all.

"Davis, can I ask you something? I want an honest answer, so no joking around."

Davis froze at T.K.'s hesitant words, and shrinking back from his friend, he gave the blond a suspicious look. Something told him he wasn't going to want to answer his T.K.'s question, though he knew he would anyway.

Now what does he want?

Davis jumped as Ken suddenly put an arm around him, giving him an encouraging look, and leaning close the raven-haired Digidestined whispered, "It's okay, Davis. Just answer T.K. and get it over with. It won't be as bad as you think."

You're right, Ken, it'll probably be worse...

"Ask then, if it'll make you feel better," he mumbled, avoiding the golden-haired Digidestined's penetrating gaze.

T.K.'s bright blue gaze never shifted from his face, though his words were quiet and filled with doubt. "Do you...care about me as much as you care about our other friends?"

T.K.'s voice was so low, Davis just barely heard the blond, but he did hear, and the words made his face turn bright red. "What kind of a question is that?"

"Please, just answer the question."

Davis thanked the heavens that T.K. wasn't looking at him, because his face was slowly staring to turn an unpleasant shade of purple. "Do I have to answer that?"

"Yes," T.K. said bluntly, a small smile forming on his lips.

Jerk!

T.K. already knew the answer to that question. The blond was just trying to make him sweat, not to mention doing his best to embarrass him in front of the others.

"You know I do," he mumbled. "Don't make me have to say it."

Suddenly T.K.'s face softened, and the blond smiled gently at him in return. "It's okay, you don't have to say it, but I want you to know that I feel the same way about you." T.K. paused for a moment and then said quietly, "Can you forgive me? I never meant to make you think I didn't care."

It's hopeless! I can't stay mad at him, and truthfully I'm tired of trying. There's no way he can be lying and still pull that expression off!

"Well," he said slowly, "I did have four reasons for liking you. I'm sure I can come up with more if I try hard enough!"

T.K. stared at him for a moment, his eyebrows rising into his hairline. "Have you been talking to Matt?"

Davis's mouth fell open, and he gazed at T.K. in surprise. "How did you know?"

The corners of the blond's mouth twitched up in a smile, and he started to laugh. "This has Matt written all over it!"

"Actually yeah, I did talk to him," Davis replied, aware of the fact that he sounded a bit sheepish. "He told me I should give you a chance to explain yourself, and I guess he was right."

"He usually is," T.K. said softly. "I'll have to remember to thank him later."

"I shouldn't have questioned his friendship skills," Davis muttered, feeling guilty. "If anything, I should have been questioning my own."

T.K. winced. "You doubted Matt's skills in friendship? You are brave! How did he take it?"

"Er...not so well," Davis grinned. "But we're cool now."

"You still haven't answered my question," T.K. murmered. "Do you believe me and accept my apology?"

"Oh alright," Davis grumbled, rolling his eyes. "There's nothing to forgive, and I believe every word you said. Man, you Ishida/Takaishis are a thorn in my side! How do you always managed to get under other people's skin?"

T.K. smiled innocently at him. "It's because you and people like Tai let us!"

Before Davis could stop the blond, T.K. gave him a quick hug before pulling back with a smile on his face. The blond looked radiant, his bright blue eyes sparkling with happiness. Davis, on the other hand, blushed and quickly glanced around to see if anyone else had noticed, but thankfully there were no other students hanging around outside the building at the moment. "T.K.! Can you please not do that in public?"

"Why not? You hugged Matt in public!" Ken teased.

"Ken!"

Davis glared at his best friend, and the two female Digidestined started giggling, hiding their smiles behind their hands.

T.K. just shook his head, hiding a smile of his own. "I'm not even going to ask."

"That was so sweet!" Yolei sighed, and Davis gave her a dirty look.

Note to self: Never confess anything in front of Yolei ever again!

T.K. put a warm hand on his shoulder, distracting him from plotting revenge against Yolei, and the blond smiled at him, showing his sincerity. "Davis, your skills in friendship are anything but lousy. So...are we friends again?"

The blond's smile slipped a fraction, and Davis answered it with one of his own. "Yeah, we're friends again, and thanks. That means a lot to me. Actually, do you mind helping me study for a test tomorrow? Otherwise I'm going to fail math!"

T.K. laughed and nodded, slipping an arm around him to give his shoulders an affectionate squeeze. "Of course! Anytime, Davis."

"Hey!" Davis brightened and gave them all a big smile. "Ken's coming to my house right now. Why don't you all come for supper?"

"Yeah, that's a great idea," Ken added.

They all agreed and leading the pack, Davis lead his friends down the street towards his residence, T.K. walking beside him. At that moment, he happened to look over his shoulder and he spotted Domu coming out of the school, chatting with a few of his friends from the basketball team. The sandy-haired boy spotted him walking next to T.K. and he stopped short, a scowl on his face. As much as Davis wanted to punch the other boy in the face, he contented himself with giving Domu a big smile and a hearty wave. Domu glared daggers at him, but Davis didn't care. He knew now, without a shadow of a doubt, that T.K. had not been lying to him. T.K. was his friend, and that was all that mattered, and as far as he was concerned, Domu was forgotten. Real friends were the kind that stuck by you no matter what faults you might have, like T.K., and to Davis that was the most important thing of all.

The End