Digimon: Digital Monsters

A Courageous Love - Remastered

Rewritten by: djb21212

Disclaimer: I never owned Digimon.

Plot: This is another story in my remastering project and is being rewritten as a prologue to my "Digimon: Redemption" series. It was intended to be exactly that except I went in a totally different direction due to time. Anyways, once again, this is a Taiora and takes place a few weeks after Season 2. Enjoy and please review!

"So, are you going to the concert with anybody? Not that it matters. I was just wondering…"

"Actually, I wanted to wait in case Matt was free afterwards…"

Time seemed to pause as the sentence played over again in Tai's head, a small lump growing in his chest that would feel something similar to being stabbed with a rusty blade. He had placed his heart on the line that day, drawing on his courage to ask Sora Takenouchi out for the first time. She looked beautiful to the DigiDestined leader that day as she stood there outside of Matt's dressing room, her red hair swept softly by the winter winds. A floral scent drifted from her, like fresh roses and jasmine mingled with the sweet savor of fresh-baked cookies. Yet, she was not waiting there for Tai. She was there for Matt, Tai's main rival and occasional friend. He could only watch from the sidelines as Sora walked into the concert with her gift for the blond DigiDestined of Friendship, crumbling his longing for her into dust upon the snow-dusted ground. Agumon, his lizard-like Digimon partner, witnessed the pain in Tai's eyes and tried to cheer him up a little.

"You know what, Tai?"

"What?" Tai answered in a depressed tone.

"You've grown up a lot."

"Thanks." He couldn't tell his Digimon the truth. He was the DigiDestined of Courage, the leader of the champions of the Digital World. His feelings didn't matter when he still had an example to live up to. He would just smile and move on, even if it broke his heart later.

The concert had been canceled because of a brief Digimon attack. Tai could only watch silently as Sora and Matt walked off together with their partners, oblivious to the pain that ripped at his insides. The night air was chilly but it seemed to soothe him, letting the brown-haired Child of Courage clear his thoughts as he returned to his home with Agumon. Yet as he started to lay down for bed, Tai's mind went against him and replayed the events of that day in detail.

Had he truly lost Sora forever?

Was this battle that he could never win?

Would she give her heart and soul to Matt instead of him?

"Shut up!" Tai shouted to the empty shadows surrounding him, fortunate that he didn't wake his parents or Kari, his sister, from their slumber.

'Don't lie to yourself, Kamiya.' Tai's mind answered back. "It's bothering you and you know it. You're just too stubborn to admit it.'

"There's nothing to admit. If Sora's happy being with Matt, then that's fine."

'Is it? Can you say to yourself that you can let go of your feelings for her, move on with your life as if nothing happened?'

Silence.

'Didn't think so.'

The more that he thought about it, the more that he felt numb and empty inside, like a weight was upon his heart. Tai lay down on his bed and forced his aching feelings aside. Sora was gone and there was nothing that he could do. It was her decision and she chose Matt. He had to be happy for them, for the good of the whole group and his own sanity. He was compelled to cry but he resisted, forcing back the hot tears that threatened to break through. Courage never cried. He was too strong for that. He then closed his eyes and drifted into unconsciousness, sleeping a numb and dreamless sleep.

The next day, Tai woke up to the sound of knocking on his bedroom door. He groaned in aggravation at the possible intruder, not wanting to face whomever was waiting on the other side.

"Go away." Tai said, not caring whoever it might be.

"Tai, it's me." Kari's voice answered gently from the other side. "Can I come in?"

"I don't care." As Kari opened the door, she almost gasped in shock at how her brother had changed. There was a strange aura from him now, dark and empty. His eyes, which once drifted with life and vitality, now knew only shadows. It scared Kari to see him this way. He was her rock, the one she could always depend on for help. Now he looked as if the favor needed to be returned.

"Tai, what's wrong? You look like you've been run over by a Tyrannomon tribe."

"You really want to know?"

"Yeah." Kari answered, unsure of whether she actually wanted to hear the cause of her brother's torment. Tai took a deep breath as he gave his sister her answer.

"...It's Sora, all right?"

"Is it because of what happened on Christmas?"

'Told ya you couldn't let go' Tai's inner thoughts said, making the teenage boy cringe slightly as the memories of yesterday returned full force. He forced it away with a small grunt as his eyes met Kari's.

"I don't want to talk about it."

Kari looked into her brother's chocolate-brown eyes, seeing fully that they had been darkened over with sadness.

"Tai, please tell me what you're feeling. It's starting to scare me."

"…I'm in love with her." Tai said as tears began to form in his eyes, no longer able to completely ignore his feelings. "I've loved her since we first went to the Digital World. Every time I close my eyes now, I see her. The way she looks, the way she sounds, the way she smells... We've been best friends ever since soccer camp and never growing apart. Then, when we went to the Digital World, we looked out for each other as well as the others. She was great, especially with you."

"Go on." Kari said, seeing her brother almost smile at the pleasant memories.

"Then, after I finally get the guts to ask her out... she ends up with Matt, of all people. I could understand a total stranger but... but why Matt, Kari? She didn't even like him that much. He never went to any of her soccer games or her tennis matches. I did. He never tried to comfort her when she was feeling bad or visit her when she was sick with the flu. I did. He never protected her with his life on the line. I DID! So, how could this happen unless... unless I was already too late?"

Tai was shaking with bitterness and sorrow as he told Kari all of this. She could only listen with a sympathetic heart.

"Matt doesn't know her. How could he? All he cares about is his damn music. He doesn't know the real Sora but... but she still chose him. I... I was just a friend to her. I was too late. If I hadn't gotten so wrapped up with my stupid pride..." By now, Tai had placed his head in his hands, trying to steady his breathing and keep himself from crying in front of his sister. Kari put her arms around his shoulders and held him, wanting her brother to let go of his pain.

"Why didn't you say anything before, Tai?"

"I couldn't. I couldn't ruin our friendship. I care more about that than anything else. If I lost her as a friend because I was being selfish, I'd never forgive myself."

Kari decided that she needed to take matters into her own hands. The last thing that she wanted to see was her brother in pain. "Tai, I have to go fix breakfast. Do you want anything?"

"No, thanks." Tai replied, feeling mentally drained. With that, Kari went into the living room and dialed Sora's phone number, determined to get some answers.

'Why would she do this to Tai?' Kari thought to herself. 'Didn't Sora have any clue about how he felt about her?'

"Hello?" came the familiar reply over the receiver.

"Sora? It's Kari."

"Hi, Kari. How are you?"

"I'm fine. Sora, there's something I want to ask you."

"Okay. What is it?"

"Do you know what you've done to my brother?"

On the other end of the line, Sora was surprised at the Child of Light's bluntness. It wasn't usually Kari's style to talk to anyone that way, instead leaving it to others like Tai or even Davis. "What do you mean?"

"Tai's in bad shape because of you."

"Kari, I don't know what you're talking about."

"He's in his room right now. He's depressed because he thinks that you and Matt are a couple. He won't eat or even leave his room. Sora, Tai told me that he has feelings for you."

With that, Sora was in shock as her brain registered this new information. Tai Kamiya? Feelings for her? "Oh… for how long?"

"Since the day you two met. He's in love with you. He told me how he's always been there for you and protected you. He's sacrificed a lot to keep you and the others safe. I even remember him putting his life on the line in the Digital World because he had faith that you'd come through for him. Now my brother's heart is broken because of you."

"Oh my..." Sora said in disbelief. "Kari, I never knew that he felt this way. I honestly thought that he just wanted to be friends with me. I should have seen this at Christmas when I brought those cookies for Matt. Why didn't he just tell me?"

"He didn't want to ruin your friendship. Sora, he needs to see you so you can talk this over. Please?"

"I know." Sora's thoughts whirled as she tried to understand what Tai must have been going through. "Listen, can I be over there in about ten minutes?"

"Sure." With that, both girls hung up the phone. When Sora came over a few minutes later, she went immediately to Tai's bedroom door, not even stopping to remove her coat.

"Tai, it's me. It's Sora."

"What do you want?" Tai responded in a cold, almost monotone voice.

"I came to see how you were."

"Why don't you see how Matt is?"

Sora tried to stay calm, the tomboy in her wanting to knock down the door and drag out her large-haired friend to face her. She took a deep breath as she calmed herself. "Tai... Kari told me what happened."

"What do you care?"

"I care because you're supposed to be my best friend."

"Yeah? Well, tell me this. Who was it that rescued you from Datamon's pyramid? Me. Who was it that comforted you when you thought your crest wouldn't glow? Me. Who was it that almost died to make sure that you brought Matt back so we could face off Piedmon? Me."

"I know, Tai." Sora said with tears in her eyes.

"Let me ask you this. Was it Matt who was at your soccer games and tennis matches? Was it Matt who tried to help you get better that time that you had the flu? (I'll mention it in another story someday.) Was it Matt who always comforted you and talked to you?"

"No." Sora finally muttered, feeling even more guilty with each comment. Tai had come off so coldly, not sounding like the carefree soccer-playing leader of the DigiDestined she was used to. It pained her to see him this way, to know he had been holding on to so much over the years and she had become the succumbus who caused it.

"I loved you, Sora. But I guess that wasn't enough for you."

There was silence for a few seconds. Then…

"I love you, too." Sora finally spoke, admitting something she had thought had gone away over the years. With that, Tai slowly opened the door, letting the Child of Love see him for the first time since the ruined concert.

"What about you and Matt?"

"Tai, I don't know why I fell for him. Maybe it was because he was popular with the girls. Maybe it was I thought he had changed, that he was what I needed. But…"

"But?"

"He's not you. Tai, you're the one who was always there for me when I needed it. I do love you and... I'm sorry for hurting you." Sora caressed his cheek, feeling the warmth of his skin. Tears glistened in her amber eyes during this moment. Tai wanted so badly to caress her, to hold on to her and never let go. He used his thumb to wipe the tears from her eyes, hating himself for what he had to do next. She would thank him later for it.

"Sora... "

"Yes?"

"I can't. I want to, but I can't. I did love you once, and part of me still does, but I'm not the one you're in love with. You can't let a few moments we had change what's here and now. Maybe someday I can move on, but not now."

"Tai..." Sora said with tears in her eyes. She wanted to cry. "So, what's going to happen for us?"

"Nothing. You have to understand that I just need some time. I promise, when the time is right, I'll let you know."

"All right." With that, Tai went back to his bedroom and closed the door, leaving the Child of Love standing to reflect on what had happened. Sora was left in shock over her friend's coldness to her and was devestated. She ran out of the apartment in tears as Kari, Gatomon, and Agumon watched from a hiding place.

"Oh dear." Kari said to herself. "This is terrible."

"What's going to happen now?" Gatomon said to herself.

"Sora still didn't leave any cookies." Agumon thought to himself. "I'm still hungry."

To be continued in "Digimon: Redemption - Remastered"

Author's Note: I hope you all who enjoyed the previous version also like this one. I'll admit, it is a little choppy in certain places but I think it floes much better. Until next time!