Disclaimer: I don't own Digimon

One Moment, Itsumademo

A Digimon Tamers Fic by Crazyeight

She didn't know why she had gone out today of all days. It was colder than she would have liked even with the sun shining in the sky. Spring was only just beginning, and winters frosty grip hadn't quite loosened just yet. At least it was warm enough where the threat of snow had abated, though that didn't mean that it wouldn't rain of course, as it had done when she had woken up this morning. Digging her hands into her trench coat's pockets, the girl looked up at the sky, fiery red hair cascaded over her violet eyes and she brushed the strands lightly out of the way, catching a brief glimpse of a fox like apparition disappearing into the sunlight. Gray clouds floated by, threatening to block out the sun, but for the moment the light from above shone brightly, attempting to warm the city beneath it with its radiance. In many ways it seemed to the girl as if the sun was locked in a never ending battle with nature, struggling against the winter forces that threatened to freeze her home, gaining a temporary victory when spring turned to summer, only to retreat again as autumn and winter set in once more. A never-ending circle of life, and in an odd way this sense of constancy comforted her. It was as though the turn of each season was almost a promise that it would one day return, like an old friend. The girl wasn't sure which mindset she identified with more, believed more. Did she see nature as a constant battle for survival against the elements? Or as something that was to be treasured as dearly as friendship?

The girl, whose name was known as Rika Nonaka to her friends, and the Digimon Queen to her contemporaries in the Digimon card game that she loved so much, struggle was something that had defined her life. In the past year she had been what had a few months ago come to be known to the world at large as a Digimon Tamer, battling rogue digimon alongside her partner Renamon, and the two had set out together with the intention of being the strongest digimon and Tamer between two worlds, the digital and the real ones. Their relationship had come a long way since when they first became partners. There had once been a time where Rika had seen the digital life forms known as digimon as nothing more than a stepping stone to make Renamon grow stronger, and even the kitsune's own attachment to her, at least in the beginning, was just as a way to digivolve and become greater than she already was. But as time went on, events occurred that constantly challenged their modes of thinking. New experiences made Rika realize that Taming digimon was more than how it was depicted in the card game, there had to be an emotional understanding between Tamer and digimon that had to be made in order to bring out their true strength. Rika smiled lightly at this, appreciating some small sense of irony that she found. Of all the Tamers that she had known, she was one of the most experienced, and yet this one little fact, that digimon were more than just mere fighting tools that constantly fought against each other in a battle of survival of the fittest, was a lesson that kept eluding her. Perhaps it was because she herself didn't want to see it, though looking back on it now, she couldn't see how she had been so blind.

There was the sound of a splash and a cold, wetness oozed through the soles of her sneakers, damping her socks as Rika walked. A small frown appeared on the red heads features, giving her the appearance of a far off thunderstorm, and above her a cloud passed over the sun, blocking out the majority of its light and giving the world a darker look to it. Rika hadn't been a very big fan of cold weather, not since she had a run in with a certain icy digimon by the name of IceDevimon. He had tried to claim the Digimon Queen as his partner, tried to kill Renamon, and had showed off a host of other digimon that he had hunted during his existence, like they were trophies of the kill meant to be displayed as proof of his superiority over them, and as a show of his worthiness to her. The looks of horror that were on their faces…

That experience had been a wake up call to Rika, though it had scared her significantly enough that she had nearly renounced being a Tamer for good, and almost lost her friendship with Renamon with it. Later though she had reclaimed both when she helped Renamon in a battle with a Harpymon, reminding her once more of what it meant to be partners with a digimon. She couldn't believe that she had been so ready before to throw it all away. Even afterwards, when fate had conspired to separate her from Renamon, she never once regretted opening up to the kitsune, even though it had hurt losing her. And besides, Renamon came back to her, all of their digimon did, and in the end that was all that mattered.

Rika looked out of the corner of her eye at the boy that she walked next to. If he was at all bothered by the cold, he hid it well beneath that wide smile of his; that smile that was always seemed to be there no matter what happened, and it had a way of making a day brighter. His wild, untamed hair was of a light brown, and he wore a short-sleeved blue hoody and tan pants. Sitting on his head, reflecting the light that came from the sun as it came out from behind the clouds once again was an item that gave him the nickname that she had called him when they first met.

Gogglehead.

Funny. Rika never really thought about friends until she met Renamon. Taming was something that dominated her life, and her own grouchy, cynical, tomboyish attitude had a way of making others shy away from her. Certainly she wouldn't have thought about being friends with this kid, who acted rather childishly and could be clumsy at times, and his own partner Guilmon, the crimson dinosaur that she would occasionally refer to as Dino boy was hardly any better, and could in fact be worse, if that was at all possible. The first time they had met in fact, she had ordered Renamon to attack the duo, thinking of them as nothing more than a stupid kid with a pet digimon. Sometimes she still thought so, but her thoughts were no longer laced with the contempt that she had felt then. The boy, whose name was Takato Matsuki, had proven himself time and time again to be able to rise to the challenge that Taming represented, defeating enemies that even Rika herself had been unable too. Not bad for a Gogglehead who kept tripping over his own shadow. Even Ryo Akiyama, their friend and her rival, could admit that he was impressed with his performance during the D-Reaper crisis, and even Rika found it difficult to argue with him on that observation.

Not that she would ever admit it to the Legendary Tamer of course.

They had bumped into each other (not literally mind you) while Takato had been making a delivery for his folks bakery, and once that was done they had set off towards the park so that he could fetch Guilmon (who was probably bored out of his mind by now) and go meet up with the rest of the gang, Henry, Kazu, Kenta, Jeri, Suzie, and yes, even Ryo and their respective partners. Rika shook her head slightly, feeling a small smile grace her face, again astounded by the crowd that she had taken to calling her 'friends' since becoming a Digimon Tamer (even if they hadn't been friends in the beginning). She was not a very social person due to her own personality. She tended to drive people away and make them avoid her at all costs, but this group of clowns (as she referred to them on more than one occasion, right next to goof troop) accepted her. Granted, there was friction between her and some of those that she hung out with (Kazu and Kenta had a way of grinding on her nerves, but then they could get on anyone's nerves after a while.), but their shared experiences as Tamers had bound them all the tighter, and now she couldn't think of anyone else that she'd rather call friends.

Well, maybe with the exception of Kazu.

Rika smiled once more and, in a move that was completely unexpected even to her, she swung an arm around the boy who strode beside her, and rested it upon his shoulder, the hand hanging lazily as though it belonged there as she pulled the boy a little closer to her. She felt Takato stiffen and she could almost imagine the look of surprise that he must have had on his face, but she didn't look at him just yet and continued walking, her own forward momentum being enough to keep the Gogglehead moving instead of stopping in the middle of the sidewalk. Apparently feeling that the path of least resistance was the best choice at the moment Takato's steps became more natural, synchronizing with Rika's as they continued on their course, not bothering to ask what the sudden display of friendliness was for as she wouldn't answer it in any way that was direct, unless it was insulting. Rika smiled again as she thought of how meeting Renamon, Takato, and Henry had changed her for the better. No longer was she the ice-cold, battle-driven Digimon Queen who destroyed digimon mercilessly just to prove to herself that she was strong. Her relationship with her family and friends, once strained and at other times barely existent, was now something that filled her days. A warm feeling spread its way from Rika's heart and throughout her body, and she felt her smile widen. Where before she would have felt a little bit uncomfortable with this feeling (as had been the case numerous times in the past when dealing with Renamon or any one of her friends), she didn't feel so this time. Perhaps it was because of all the nostalgia that she had been experiencing today.

Or perhaps… it was something more?

Risking a glance out of the corner of her eyes, Rika looked over at the goggle wearing Tamer once more, to find that his cheeks had adopted a rather rosy color to them, and his face still bore that same, stupid, warm smile that he had when she saw him today. The one that no cloud could ever keep from shining, no matter how much it thundered.

Friendship… once she had seen it as a weakness, but now it gave her a bottomless reservoir of strength that went beyond any digimon card. Rika knew now that despite his own clumsy nature, Takato was a true friend, and his friendship with her was something that she treasured. True friendship she felt was hard to come by, even in this day and age, but she was glad that she had found it. She was glad that Takato was one such person that she could count on to be her friend. There were other people out there who could look a thousand years and never find someone that could.

Maybe it's not about finding the right person, thought Rika, never once losing her friendly smile, or removing her arm from its place on the boy's shoulders. Maybe it's about being the right person.

Above them, the sun once more broke past a patch of clouds, illuminating the city beneath it with its warm rays, and the world sighed in contentment.

A/N: Another Rika/Takato friendship fic by me. The title came to me when I was looking over an old review of another Rukato author, containing the Rukato battle cry of yore that doesn't seem to be batted around anymore except in its English equivalent (Itsumademo I understand is supposed to mean 'Forever' in Japanese. If someone says otherwise then I've pretty much wasted my time here). The idea behind the title for this story is that a moment in the company of friends can take on the feeling of lasting forever, something that seems to slip away as time goes by (sighs). The scene was inspired from a picture I saw on DeviantART featuring the Rukato pairing, belonging to Regless (or Black. I forget which one came up with it, as they both share Black's account), the author of the famous story Perfect Hazard and its sequel Viral State. It's a good pic, and it's certainly one of my favorites. I wanted to capture that scene in the form of a story, wanting to let the scene speak more for itself, and it offered me the challenge of writing something without the characters even speaking, which is pretty tough to do, and I hope that I pulled it off well. I think that the picture does a way better job though, after all a picture is worth a thousand words (even though this story is well over a thousand words). Hope that you all enjoyed the fic.

-Crazyeight

4