A/N: Haha, this is the longest one-shot I've ever written. I was going to say the longest fic in general, but that's not true. It's Mimato, with some Daikari thrown in for good measure, and it's supposed to be a look at the group dynamic. Oh, and Jyou isn't included in the group not because I don't like him, but because he's gone to University already, being a year ahead of the rest.

Disclaimer: Toei owns Digimon, not me.

Cold War (With A Side Salad)

Monday: The Burger Place near Taichi's house

On five barstools opposite the counter: Sora, Mimi, Koushirou, Yamato and Taichi

"You know, Meems, I've known Yamato for a considerably long time, and I'm finding it a little hard to believe that he deliberately drenched you with an open can of coke." Sora made small circles in her milkshake with her straw while waiting for her friend to finish swallowing a bite of salad (Greek, with croutons).

"Hate to break it to you, but he did," Mimi said decidedly, stabbing a crouton rather violently with her fork. "I was wearing white, too."

Sora paled. "Oh, no, not the – "

"Yes! The tanktop!"

"The one with the – "

"Yes! That one!"

"Oh, Mimi!" Sora exclaimed, leaning over her dinner (Regular Hamburger with Fries) to rub her friend's shoulder in as comforting a way as one can after an expensive piece of clothing has been slaughtered. From the other end of the counter, Taichi watched this interaction with a bored expression on his face.

"It was a shirt," he said, propping his head up on his elbow next to his spotless plate (that had, at one point, been a Double Cheeseburger with fries). "A tanktop, too. That doesn't even qualify as a shirt."

"It was a very expensive and pretty shirt, Taichi!" Sora shot back rather loudly, being four bodies away from him along the counter. "I don't even think they make it anymore!"

"What's with you?" Taichi asked, amused. "You don't like fashion stuff."

Sora huffed, tucking a strand of orange hair behind her ear. "I am a girl, you know."

"Oh. Right."

"You know, from what I've gathered about the situation, I don't think Yamato can really take all the blame," Koushirou explained, rather tentatively, as a seething Mimi was sitting not two feet away from him.

"Oh? And why's that?" Mimi asked, with another swift stab of her fork. Koushirou jumped at the action, and covered his surprise by grabbing another chicken finger (With Honey-Mustard Sauce).

"It's the fault of the cans, you see," he explained conversationally. "You open them, and then you have to drink them all, because you simply can't close them again. It doesn't make sense that they couldn't invent some kind of lid or something…"

"Yeah, why don't you work on that," Taichi quipped, grinning. "I still think Yama did it on purpose, you know. As an act against womanhood!"

Sora snorted. "Against what?"

"Womanhood! Females! The skirt-wearing race!"

"The skirt-wearing race?" Sora asked, looking more amused than offended. Mimi, on the other hand, looked rather pissed.

"Really. Well. I'm still certain that Yamato did it because he is a mean, nasty fart who talks more to his hair than he does to other human beings, but you know, I was only the only one actually there, so…"

Yamato, who during the entire conversation had been concentrating very hard on his dinner (Veggie Burger with Fries) now uttered a strangled moan and dropped his fork with a clunk! on his plate.

Taichi laughed. "Yama, she just called you a fart!"

"I made a hand motion, the can was open, and I accidentally spilled some on her," Yamato explained, still staring hard at his plate and attempting to keep his voice stable. "I didn't mean to."

"Hence the word 'accident'," Taichi added, helpfully.

"I'm sure," Mimi replied stiffly, not looking up from her plate either. "You did it out of spite. You said you hated that shirt."

"I said you might get cold wearing that shirt!"

"It's summer! Why would I be cold!"

"Err," Koushirou interjected, "Mimi, you're always cold." All it took was a single glare and Koushirou quickly backed out of the conversation.

"I am not always cold," she retorted. "I get cold in the winter, but that's just understandable."

Taichi scratched his head thoughtfully. "No, Meems, you're the one who's always cold, Sora's the one who's always hot, and Koushirou's the one who sneezes whenever it's damp."

"Thanks, man."

"Anytime."

Mimi frowned and slammed her fork forcefully onto the counter with a look of blind rage in her eyes that was actually quite menacing behind layers of dark mascara, and everyone shut up.

"Look, I think it's safe to say that Yamato is a self-centered turd who hates everything happy about life and all people who are happy in life, and I really don't think anyone else's opinions count since the only people there were me and Yamato, and Yamato's being a turd renders him unable to tell the truth about certain situations. So let's drop it, okay?"

Yamato's gaze dropped to his plate. There was a long silence interrupted by a few soothing "shhh"'s from Sora and one "hee, turd" from Taichi, and then Koushirou remembered that his strong feelings about closeable soda cans were very similar to his ongoing tirade about sun-powered lawnmowers, and conversation resumed.

Once, Sora poked Mimi on the shoulder and bent over to whisper in her ear: "So, you're really not talking to Yamato?"

Mimi nodded. "Really."

Tuesday: The Okonomiyaki place next to the CD Store

The Booth in the Back Corner: Sora, Mimi and Koushirou on one side, Taichi and Yamato on the other

"You guys remember my life plan?" Taichi asked, wiping his okonomiyaki (Shrimp) off of his face where it had ended up in his attempt to put it in his mouth.

"You mean how you're going to win millions of dollars in a dog show and purchase the country of Algeria?" Yamato asked politely.

"Yeah, that one. I'm changing it."

"A wise decision," Koushirou commented dryly, (he had always been a little thrown off by Taichi's goals and dreams seeing as Algeria had already undergone a bloody revolution in 1962 and really didn't need Taichi as their dictator). He quickly took another bite (Pork Okonomiyaki) incase Taichi noticed his sarcasm.

He didn't.

"Yeah, I'm gonna become a skater," he explained, beaming. Koushirou promptly choked on his food and Mimi had to slap his back a few times before he managed to swallow. Yamato laughed outright, while Sora tried very hard to look accepting.

"You don't know how to skateboard, Taichi," she reminded him, as kindly as possible.

"Daisuke's teaching me!"

"Daisuke?" Yamato raised an eyebrow, obviously skeptical, at the same time that Mimi let out a loud squeal.

"Daisuke! Oh, he's a fantastic skater! Have you guys seen him do railings?" She clasped her hands together tightly and an almost dreamy look crossed her face.

This prompted Taichi to point at her and exclaim: "See! See! Skaters get chicks! Dog breeders, while I'm sure they are very hip people, do not get chicks."

Sora had a piece of Okonomiyaki (Squid) halfway to her mouth, but, laughing, decided against eating it for fear of winding up like poor Koushirou, who was still trying to get the pork completely down his throat.

"I'm sure plenty of people will go out with dog breeders," she said good-naturedly. "Especially if the dogs are cute," she added with a smile.

"What's better is when the skaters are cute!" Mimi exclaimed. Taichi nodded proudly.

"Yeah, but what about when they aren't cute?" Sora asked.

"…Well, that wasn't very nice."

"It wasn't meant to be."

"Taichi," Yamato interrupted from his dinner (Squid Okonomiyaki), feeling that the appropriate time to crush Taichi's dreams had long since passed, "Daisuke can skate well because being a clumsy freak of nature, God figured it was best to even the scales so that he wouldn't kill himself. You, on the other hand, would not only kill yourself, but would be a danger to all of Japan."

Taichi pouted, Sora giggled, Koushirou took a huge swig of his water, and Mimi, with unexpected emotion, threw her chopsticks down onto her plate and looked Yamato right in the eye.

"I'll have you know," she began, watching him intensely from behind her narrowed eyes, "that it's rude and inconsiderate for you to call Daisuke clumsy, and Taichi could be a great skater if he really wanted to be and will get plenty of chicks because we like skaters better than rock stars anyways."

Another long pause. Yamato stared at Mimi, mouth half-open, until he once again dropped his gaze to his plate, breaking their eye-contact.

"Wow," Koushirou muttered, "I forgot about the Cold War."

Taichi shrugged. "It made Mimi-chan take my side, so I'm cool."

Mimi finally looked away from Yamato and concentrated once again on her own meal (Vegetable Okonomiyaki), and Sora shot her a confused smile before returning her attentions to the apparent soon-to-be-skater-pimp.

"So, are you planning on wearing the baggy pants and everything, too?" She asked.

"Naw," Taichi said, stealing some food off of Yamato's plate, "I will recreate the skater fashion. They will call it 'The Look of Taichi'."

"So, all skaters will wear soccer jerseys?" Koushirou asked.

"…This coming from the guy who wears khakis on the weekend."

"How about Algeria?" Sora laughed. "I thought you really had your heart set on that?"

"Still do!" Taichi grinned.

"How?" Koushirou asked, his eyebrows shooting up to his hairline. "Skateboarding isn't an official sport, you really can't make any kind of substantial money from it…"

This didn't seem to phase Taichi. "Simple. My chicks will raise dogs!"

"…you do realize that you'd have to win about a million prestigious dog shows to ever have enough money to actually buy a country!"

"You're underestimating my ability to get chicks."

The familiar argument continued, and neither Yamato nor Mimi said another word during dinner.

Wednesday: Yamato's Apartment

Sitting Around the Table on the Floor: Taichi, Yamato, Sora, Mimi and Koushirou

"She has an older brother?" Taichi exclaimed, staring wide-eyed at Koushirou and leaning far enough across the table to fully invade his personal space.

Koushirou blinked. "Err, yeah. She does."

"How old?"

"Um, I'm not sure," he stuttered, "twenty four, maybe?"

"SIX YEARS?" Taichi bellowed, not an uncommon action for Yamato's house where all the neighbors were either deaf of blasted music all the time.

"Well, she's actually a seventeen, so…"

"SEVEN YEARS?"

"Taichan, I really don't see why this is such a big deal," Mimi sighed, leaning back against the couch. "So Koushirou's date has an older brother. Your point is?" The group took up the floor of the apartment since Yamato's dad was at work, and was nearly done with their dinner (Chicken with rice, cooked by Yamato himself).

Taichi seemed almost offended at her remark. "The older brother always has to know if his younger sister is being asked out! It's like…a RULE!"

Sora giggled, tugging the hem of her skirt down from her position stretched out on her back on the floor. "You are so overprotective, Taichi."

"Am not!" Taichi flushed. "Yama, you're familiar with the rule, right!"

"Last time I checked, Takeru was a guy," Yamato said dryly, taking a sip of his water.

"Still!" Taichi huffed. "If some…some floozy girl asked him out, you'd want to know about it, right!"

"Takeru can take care of himself," Yamato yawned.

Taichi looked aghast. "You don't MEAN that!"

"Just like Hikari can take care of herself."

Taichi shook his head vigorously. "No, she can't. She can't do anything without me! She's cute and innocent and isn't going to date until she's FORTY if I have to STRANGLE ALL WHO APPROACH HER!" He punctuated the sentence with an enthusiastic hand gesture, and Yamato ducked to avoid getting clonked in the head.

Sora laughed, and reached over to give Yamato a consoling pat on the shoulder, since he looked about ready to rip out all of Taichi's hair. "See, this is why Daisuke-kun is afraid of you!"

She realized her mistake immediately, but there was no way to take it back. Yamato dropped his fork to stare at her, Koushirou squeaked, and Mimi hid her face in her hands.

Taichi, however, didn't seem to notice the hidden meaning behind Sora's statement, and continued on his hot-headed rampage. "And he SHOULD be afraid of me! Everyone is afraid of me! I am the king of justice! The Prince of all that is good! The Duke of…" His grin disappeared. "Wait, what do you mean, Daisuke is afraid of me?"

Sora laughed and shook her head, more nervously than she intended. "Oh, nothing. Remember, everyone is afraid of you. The Duke of Power, right?"

"Actually, I was going to go for 'The Duke of Breathtaking Physical Prowess, but that works too," Taichi said, eyes still narrowed. "What did you mean about Daisuke?" When it became clear that Sora wasn't going to answer, his eyes shifted to Yamato, who was quite used to dealing with an enraged Taichi, and merely shrugged. Mimi followed suit, and it wasn't until Taichi's death glare rested on a very frightened Koushirou that he got the answer he was hoping not to hear.

"Well," Koushirou mumbled, glaring at the others out of the corner of his eye, "you see, Daisuke-kun and Hikari-chan, for the last couple weeks have, um…you know…"

"No, obviously I don't know, so why don't you tell me?"

Koushirou gulped. "I-I don't think it's anything serious…"

It took a moment for Taichi to put two and two together, but once he finally got the wheels of his brain spinning, his fist connected with the table with such force that he ended up knocking over four of the five cups and spilling water and Diet Coke all over the food.

"DAISUKE IS DATING MY SISTER!"

Yamato shrugged. "I wouldn't call it dating, exactly…"

"WHAT WOULD YOU CALL IT, THEN!" Steam was practically pouring out of his ears as he rounded on his best friend.

"Err, that they're seeing each other in a slightly less-than-platonic fashion?"

"THAT'S DATING!"

Sora continued to laugh nervously, deciding that since she had let out the information they had all sworn to keep secret, it would be best not to interfere in the argument. The plan was working perfectly until Taichi rounded on her, leaning across the wet table so that his face shoved much farther into her personal space than she would have liked.

"You knew about this!"

"W-well, yes, but not just me, we all knew…"

"Thanks," Koushirou mumbled.

"YOU ALL KNEW!"

"They've gone on three dates, Taichan," Mimi exclaimed, exasperated. "It's not a big deal."

Taichi looked at her for a moment, and then his eyes widened in realization. "Last Friday!" he sputtered. "You told me Hikari was going to Miyako's for a sleepover!"

Mimi didn't budge. "Yes, I did."

"Were you lying?"

"Yes, I was."

"LIES!"

Mimi sighed, rubbing her temples slowly in irritation. "Yes, Taichi, I may have lied…"

"LIES AND TRICKERY!"

Then, in a very uncharacteristic move for Mimi, although over the past week it had become more and more the norm, she sat up and pounded on the table with force equal to Taichi's. The last glass tipped over, and Koushirou was greeted with a large splash of lemonade on his lap.

"You know what I don't understand?" Mimi asked angrily, eyes flashing dangerously. "Why do men have to be so goddamn overprotective? There is no rule that says that anything a girl does is anything but her own business! None! Why don't you people understand that maybe we don't want to have our lives ruined by obnoxious, selfish people like you who think that you've known us since we were young you have the right to thoroughly embarrass us and ruin our chances at happiness!"

Somewhere in the midst of this speech, Mimi's focus had shifted so that it wasn't Taichi that she was yelling at, but rather a rigid, angry-looking Yamato. He looked right back at her, with a mixture of anger and possible hurt on his face, although it was very hard to tell, being that Yamato was very well known for having the best poker face on the planet.

The silence following her outburst was long and most certainly qualified as awkward, until Taichi finally concluded that perhaps blaming Mimi for all of his problems wasn't the smartest idea, and he turned to Koushirou.

"You!" He shouted, pointing his finger at Koushirou's very confused face. "This is all YOUR fault!"

"Mine?" Koushirou squeaked. "B-but it isn't mine, I…I didn't even know about this until after…"

"ENOUGH! IT'S YOUR FAULT! ALL YOURS! EVERYTHING THAT HAS EVER GONE WRONG IS YOUR FAULT!"

Koushirou glanced around for some help, but seeing as both Yamato and Mimi were brooding in their separate corners, and Sora was glancing between them and wondering how a simple coke-drenched shirt could cause such a problem, he found himself alone on the battlefield against a very, very upset Taichi.

"Okay, fine, it's my fault."

"RIGHT!"

"I've wronged you."

"YES, YOU HAVE!"

"You are all-powerful."

"AND WISE!"

"Yes, yes, and wise. How could I forget wise?"

Thursday: The Deli near Odaiba Middle School

Sitting around a small round table: Taichi, Sora, Yamato, Koushirou, and Mimi

"Alright then!" Taichi exclaimed, his mouth half-full of food of Sandwich (Roast Beef) causing Sora to shiver in disgust. "It's roll time!"

There was a collective groan from the table.

"Do we have to do roll now?" Sora asked in what was almost a whine, but because she knew herself to be the most adult one at the table, held back in order to keep some level of maturity.

Taichi nodded, and swallowed the last bite of his sandwich. "We always do roll on Thursdays. Might as well get it done with now, and move on to the painless part of the evening."

Sora rolled her eyes. "You're only saying that because you're done with your food, and you're bored. Some people are still eating!" She held up her half-sandwich (Cucumber) to emphasize her point.

Taichi didn't seem to care. "We can't avoid it all night! Friday is tomorrow, and if you don't have a date now, you probably won't get one, so let's just take roll for who's going to be eating at Takuya's tomorrow."

Sora made a move to protest, but knew he was right, and instead prodded her side-salad with her fork, looking rather sullen.

"Okay, I'll go first," Taichi announced. "I'm there."

"Same here," Sora mumbled.

"I'm there," Yamato said quietly, looking down at his sandwich (Chicken and Avocado).

"Okay," Taichi nodded. "How about you, Meems?"

"Hey!" Koushirou interjected. "You skipped me!"

Taichi gave him a look. "Kou-man, we know you have a date tomorrow, it's all we've heard about this week, so if it's all the same to you, we're skipping over you for the sake of our own egos, mm'kay?"

"Like your ego needs any protection," Koushirou mumbled, for he had been rather excited to announce that he had a date during roll-call. It didn't happen very often.

"Shut it. Meems?"

Mimi looked up from her meal (Salad, with Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing) and said, icily: "Oh, no dates for me."

Koushirou looked puzzled at this, and completely missed Sora's frantic hand motion telling him to stop the inevitable question on the tip of his tongue.

"What about that guy you met? The one from Yamato's band? Spring…or, err…Spaniard…or…"

"Spike," Mimi finished, her tone making Koushirou jump slightly. "Yeah, that didn't work out."

Even though by this point, Taichi had joined in with his own, less-than-subtle motions to get Koushirou to shut up, the redhead plowed on.

"I'm sorry to hear that, Mimi. Why not?"

"Maybe because his parents named him after a large, pointy object?" Taichi added, in an attempt to lighten the mood.

It didn't help.

Mimi looked about ready to kill. "I don't know, but it could have something to do with the fact that someone told him a filthy lie about me."

It quickly became apparent that this "someone" was Yamato.

"Spike isn't a nice guy," he countered calmly.

"That's bull!" She cried, slamming a fist against the table. "He was a perfectly nice guy! A real gentleman! He said that he wrote that song about me!"

For some reason unknown to the rest of the table, this caused Yamato to get really, really angry.

"Which song?" He asked, his tone no longer calm.

"Your new one! The one about the girl with the pretty voice! He said that was about me!"

Yamato leaned across the table, face clenched in anger. "What the hell do you mean? He doesn't even write the goddamn songs, I do!"

Taichi glanced between the two about to say something, but Sora put a hand on his arm to silence him, staring at her friends in confusion.

"He helped with that one, though!" Mimi practically shrieked in defense.

"Yeah, he did. Because my grammar sucks ass and his doesn't! Plus, how the hell could he write a song about you if he just met you at the concert!"

Mimi stood up swiftly, knocking her chair back. "We met before the concert! I picked you up from practice last week, and I met him then! While you kept me waiting for a half hour, I might add!"

Yamato followed suit, knocking his chair back. "How does that explain his ability to write a whole song about you in one week! Do you know how many times I've heard him use that line, Meems?"

"Don't 'Meems' me!" She shouted. By this point, almost the entire deli was watching them.

"I was protecting you," Yamato snarled, tightening his grip on the checkered tablecloth.

"I don't need your protection!" She screeched, gesturing so emphatically that she nearly lopped Koushirou's ear off. "I don't need you telling him that you are my boyfriend, when you most certainly are NOT, just because of your deluded idea that it's your job to PROTECT ME! I don't need it! I don't WANT it!"

"I'm assuming that this is why you two are fighting, not because of the soda-flinging story?" Taichi added, ever so helpfully.

"Nope, he soaked me with soda, too."

Yamato stood his ground, looking absolutely livid, and Mimi looked a few seconds away from bursting out into furious tears.

Finally, Yamato clenched his eyes closed in frustration and fished into his pocket for a wallet. After throwing six dollars onto the table for his share of the bill, he strode towards the door, threw it open, and left.

It took about thirty seconds for conversation to start again in the diner, and another thirty seconds before Mimi ultimately sat down. Taichi's mouth was hanging open, making him look quite like a large blowfish, and Sora was glancing nervously at the door Yamato had slammed on his way out.

Finally Koushirou pulled himself out of his daze and whispered, timidly: "Err, I invented a program today that calculate your IQ just by inputting the size of your head."

On a normal occasion, this comment would have been brushed off as useless trivia, but considering their desperate need for a conversation topic, both Sora and Taichi nodded encouragingly.

"With just your head-size!" Sora exclaimed.

"Bet it goes faster than those IQ tests," Taichi added, in fake awe.

"Err, yes, it does," Koushirou continued, glad that for once his friends were actually listening to his accomplishments. "I mean, there are some problems with the whole process, of course."

"Problems?" Sora prodded.

"Well," he continued, picking up his sandwich (Turkey), "it seems to get different results if you enter the circumference accounting for hair and not, and it also told me with utmost certainty that my neighbors dog has intelligence that rivals Einstein's."

Taichi shrugged. "You never know!"

The conversation continued, but neither participant was paying much attention. All three were concentrating on Mimi, who was sitting in her chair, arms folded, still looking very much like she was ready to burst into tears.

Friday: Takuya's, a restaurant near Sora's house

Fifteen minutes before anyone normally arrives

Summer was a time of tradition, when everything was set in stone, and there were no surprises. This sounds strange, because of course summer should be a time of excitement and new things, and a summer of traditions seems boring and worthless. However, when five friends are spending their last summer together before heading off to separate Universities, tradition becomes something very important.

The traditions were never broken. Every night, Monday through Friday, they ate at the same place. They got the same food, they sat in the same seats, and everything tended to work itself out in generally the same way. Thursday night they took roll for those who would be present on Friday night. Friday night was date night, and those who had dates went on them, while those who didn't met at Takuya's with every intention of avoiding the subject of dating all-together. Saturday often was reserved for getting together with the younger generations, and of course, many phone-calls and discussions about the dates from the previous night.

The tradition seemed to be what kept them together, functioning as such a smooth unit. They had been best friends all their lives, it seemed, and no one wanted to admit the inevitable: that next year, all their habits and rituals would disappear, and there was the possibility that no new ones would be formed. Because of this, everyone tried hard to keep them going, an almost unspoken pact.

So, when Yamato arrived at Takuya's fifteen minutes early, he was significantly surprised to see Mimi standing outside, arms crossed, staring at the sky. Mimi, who was never early to anything. Mimi, who was a half-hour late to her own graduation from high school.

"Hey."

She turned, caught sight of him, and after a pause, craned her neck to look back at the sky, colored pink from the setting sun. He was still for a moment, admiring that icy gaze that he was almost certain she had learned from him, before approaching her.

"It's cold out," he offered, leaning against the wall a few feet to her side.

"It is not." The goose bumps scattered across her crossed arms pleaded differently, but she obviously intended on not letting it show. It was stupid to wear such a short skirt on a cold night, but he figured she was trying to make a point. In her own, stubborn, misguided way, she was trying to defy him by looking fantastic. He wouldn't have been surprised if she had waltzed into the middle of the road to pick up guys, just to aggravate him. It was dumb.

The fact that she really did look fantastic was entirely beside the point.

"Don't you have something to say to me?" Mimi snapped, breaking his concentration. He knew what she wanted, and decided it was best not to fight with her.

"I'm sorry."

"You don't mean that," she whispered, tightening her grip on her arms.

"Fine," he retorted, "maybe I don't. Look, I'm sorry that I upset you. That, I mean."

Mimi finally turned her head to look at him, and he was shocked to see that for the second time in a week, she appeared close to tears.

"So, you're not sorry about lying? You're not sorry about ruining my social life? You're not sorry about completely changing my reputation?"

He had nothing to say to that.

"You were totally out of bounds," she continued, breathing heavily. "On so many levels. First of all, it's none of you business who I date!"

"I know," he replied.

"Second of all…" she paused, taking a deep breath, before blurting out, "how dare you use the excuse that I'm dating you! How…you can't…why would you toy with me like that!"

Yamato blinked, and while he didn't show it, the wheels in his head were spinning wildly. Mimi seemed completely unaware of what she was revealing, and continued stumbling along on her wild rampage.

"You can't…we've never even…it doesn't make sense…stupid…" Her words were punctuated by an occasional sniff, and it suddenly became aware that the danger of a flood of tears was far greater than before.

"Mimi."

She looked at him, eyes red.

"I wrote that song about you."

It was her turn to blink.

"What?"

"Our new song. I wrote it."

She bit her lip, an action that had driven him mad on many previous occasions. "About me?"

He nodded. "About you."

For maybe the first time in her entire life, Mimi was rendered speechless. She simply stood under the sign for Takuya's, staring at Yamato, as though no words could possibly do justice to what she wanted to tell him.

"So," Yamato continued, "do you want to go to dinner?"

Mimi tilted her head to the side. "We are going to dinner. We're standing outside of Takuya's."

"I know. You want to go somewhere else?"

"I don't get it," Mimi said, confused. "We always go to Takuya's. I don't know if Taichi and Sora will want to go anywhere else."

"I'm not talking about Taichi and Sora. I'm talking about you and me. Dinner. Not here."

There was a long silence, and then Mimi's shocked expression morphed into an impish grin. "You were jealous!" she exclaimed.

"What?"

"You were jealous! You were jealous of Spike!"

"I was protective," he huffed, in a pathetic attempt to defend his actions. Mimi obviously didn't buy it, and since her grin was growing wider by the second, Yamato didn't particularly care.

"This is totally breaking tradition, you know," Mimi giggled, taking a few steps towards him.

"Us going out on a date, you mean?"

"Oh, is that what this is?" She asked, a sly look on her face. Yamato threw her a look, and before he could say anything she was giggling, her arms wrapped around his neck.

"I missed you," she exclaimed, kissing his shoulder for fear that kissing anything else would wreck the almost fragile moment they were having. "I missed you lots. Lots and lots and lots!"

"Same here, Meems. If I can call you Meems, that is."

"Of course!" She pulled away slightly, then reached forward to play with a lock of Yamato's hair. "Yama, let's never fight again."

At his raised eyebrow, she rolled her eyes and added: "Well, fine, that's physically impossible, but let's never fight again for this long, okay? We'll have a twenty four hour maximum amount of fighting time, or something. And, you won't fling Coke on me anymore."

Yamato sighed. "I swear, I didn't do that on purpose. I was gesturing."

Mimi laughed, and touched his forehead with hers, an action that in the past had been very common and platonic for them, and now seemed so much more meaningful. "It wasn't because you hated my shirt? You said you didn't like it."

"I said you looked cold in it. Amazing for you seems to come hand in hand with freezing, like tonight, for instance."

She grinned, flattered. "I am freezing."

"I know."

"So, let's go someplace warm."

He smiled. "Yeah."

Yamato took her hand, struck by how natural it felt to do so. For two friends who had been nothing but platonic for years, this newfound change in affection should have been much more earth shattering than it was. It seemed normal.

Perhaps this was the founding of a new tradition.

"So! Due to some careful investigation that doesn't involve reading her diary, I've discovered that Hikari and Daisuke should be at the pizza place near his house. The plan is, I'll send you in. You will tell them that the Algerians are attacking, and it's necessary to report to the nearest bomb shelter. When they leave the building in terror, I will then pull a sack over Daisuke's head, drag him into the back of my truck, and haul him over to my secret laboratory for the appropriate punishment for dating my sister without my permission. Any questions?"

From across the booth, Sora heaved a long sigh. "A few. You do realize that you don't have a secret laboratory, a truck, a sack, or the ability to control the Algerian military?"

Taichi scowled. "I would, but it takes a lot of TIME to become a world-renowned skateboarding champion!"

"You know," Sora added, "I thought your plan involved Daisuke teaching you how to skate?"

"It did."

"How's that going? You know, now that you want him dead, and all?"

"I'm learning by myself."

"Ah. And how's that going?"

"What are you implying? That I ran into an old woman and had to fish my skateboard out of a pond? Because that certainly didn't happen. Nope."

Sora raised her eyebrows. "So, I'm assuming we won't be going through with plan 'Ruin-My-Sister's-Life-For-Absolutely-No-Reason', then?"

"…Fine, maybe not today, but SOMEDAY SOON, I WILL RULE THE WORLD, AND NO ONE WILL SET FOOT NEAR MY SISTER EVER AGAIN!"

Sora sat back, closing her eyes in frustration. "I'm not sure if I'm happy about Yamato and Mimi finally getting their acts together, or angry that they left me alone with Taichi on a Friday night."

"AND THEY SHALL CALL ME KING TAICHI, THE VALIANT!"

"…I'm going to kill them."