The thing about being a guy and buying chocolates on Valentine's Day is it's kind of like having a big flashing sign over your head saying "I'm gay". And, well, maybe Daisuke is, or as good as, or whatever. Something. But he's not really ready for the flashing sign.

Hell, he still looks around to make sure they're alone before kissing Ken, and he hasn't told his folks or Jun or the rest of the Chosen Children or, well, anyone about them, even though he knows the whole secrecy thing pisses Ken off.

It's not like it's forever, the secrecy thing. That's the thing Ken doesn't get. They'll be in college in a couple years and it'll be different. It'll be okay then, or okay-er. Daisuke just needs time.

And so he pokes around the Valentine's displays and wanders away and then comes back and pokes around a bit more. This would all be so much easier if he were dating a girl. He wouldn't even be worried about it. He could just sit back and relax and wait for the chocolate to come to him. But there's no rules for this, or if there are, he doesn't know them.

He finally ends up grabbing a Crunky bar from the regular candy aisle. He's still nervous when he pays, even though he shouldn't be, because anyone can eat a candy bar and not be gay, and it's not like the cashier knows he's buying it for someone.

He sticks it in his bag, in the front pocket so maybe it won't get crushed, but he's already wondering if it matters, because this is really lame. Buying a candy bar for Valentine's Day is even lamer than caring about Valentine's Day in the first place, and that was already pretty high on the scale of lameness.

He'd meant to text Ken, see if he can come over tonight. Daisuke's mom and dad are going out to dinner, a romantic thing, just the two of them, and Jun's probably got a date, too. So. So.

But even though he's kind of getting horny just thinking about it, he walks the rest of the way home with his thumb hovering over the send button, and in the end presses cancel instead and shoves his phone back in his pocket.

Chibimon bugs him about it when he gets home. That's one person (or Digimon, whatever) who knows about him and Ken, and frankly, Daisuke would rather he didn't. He can't imagine not having Chibimon around, but sometimes he misses his privacy. Especially lately.

So he does the only thing he can do: ignore Chibimon and play Wii instead. He jumps around a lot and the controller flies out of his hand twice and his mom yells at him from the other room to go outside if he needs to work off excess energy. It makes him feel like he's eleven again, raging hormones and all.

A little soccer in the park might not be a bad idea. Of course he ends up thinking about Ken while he's kicking the ball around. Ken in his soccer shorts. Ken sweaty and breathless. Ken stripping down and showering, and okay, yeah, maybe not such a good idea after all.

He's got his phone out to text him when "new message" pops up and it starts playing Ken's ringtone.

Mom&Dad onsen. Gone til Monday. U coming over?

It takes about two seconds to read and not much longer to write back YES.

He shoves his phone back in his pocket and gets halfway down the block before he realizes he forgot his ball. He almost doesn't go back for it, but he's not a good enough liar to ask his mom for money for a new one without turning red and stammering, so that's right out.

The train is full of couples acting stupid and couple-y and Daisuke's not jealous or anything. Definitely not. He remembers the stupid Crunky in his bag, probably either smashed or eaten by Chibimon by now. Probably for the best anyway. He can't quite imagine how he'd give it to Ken, or what he'd say.

He doesn't know what he'll say anyway. Should he say "happy Valentine's Day" or just pretend it's any other day? He chews his lip and watches a girl and guy about his age making out on the seat across from him. She's giggly and cutesy in a way that makes him gag. She's hot, though, and Daisuke thinks he could probably forgive the ditziness if that rack was pressed against him.

He'd never get a hot girl like that, though somehow he ended up with a hot guy. He wonders if Ken regrets it, if Ken's right now wishing he had a girlfriend instead of Daisuke who doesn't even want to hold hands in public.

When it's time to transfer, he gets on the train going back home instead of the one to Ken's house. He texts Ken again and tells him his mom wouldn't let him come over on a school night. Lying is so much easier by text.

He turns off his phone after sending it.

The ride home seems to take forever. He reads every ad he can see from where he's sitting. He uses spit and the cuff of his shirt to rub dirt and grass stains off his soccer ball. He counts the couples in the compartment with him (too many) and at each stop waits for a cute junior high girl to get on the train and confess that she's had a crush on him for years and was really sad when he graduated.

He's on the lookout for secret admirers on the walk home, too. Well, his admirer wouldn't be secret anymore, obviously. Not once she'd given him a love letter and homemade chocolates. And a scarf. With his initials on it? That might be overdoing it. He can't decide. Also maybe it's one of the older girls at school, or even someone from his own class. Really, he's not picky.

"I'm home," he calls out, kicking his shoes off as soon as he's through the front door.

Chibimon bounds into the entryway, nearly knocking him over. "When's Ken coming over, Daisuke, huh?"

"He's not."

"Why not?" Chibimon says, following him into his room. Daisuke throws himself down on the bed, lies there with his face buried in his pillow as Chibimon bounces up and down on his back. "Why not? Why not? Why not? Why not?" It feels kind of nice, actually, like a massage. "Daisuke!"

He stays there long after Chibimon gets bored and wanders off. He stays there while his stomach growls and gets hollower and hollower until it feels like it's eating away at itself. Then he gets up and eats the curry Mom left in the fridge for him. He pees while he's up, too, but after that it's right back to lying face down on the bed.

Liking guys is stupid. Valentine's Day is stupid. Girls are stupid for not liking him back, or at all, because maybe if he'd had a girlfriend he could have gone on pretending his crushes on guys were just about them being really cool, like Taichi. Valentine's Day is definitely the stupidest, though.

He is so over Stupidtine's Day.

He's not moping when Mom and Dad get home. He's playing Super Mario Galaxy and thinking about maybe doing his homework, neither of which are moping. When Jun comes home, Mom and Dad are in bed already, and Daisuke is still playing Mario, Chibimon conked out next to him on the floor.

"Hey, loserhead." He hears Jun flop down on the sofa behind him. "Hot date with Chibimon?"

"Shut up," Daisuke says, not looking away from the TV. "And I am not a loser."

"Um...yeah-huh. Playing video games with your Digimon on the most romantic night of the year? Sounds like the dictionary definition of loser to me."

"It's not romantic, it's lame."

"Just because you don't have a girlfriend."

"I don't need a girlfriend," he says, turning around to glare at her. "I have a boyfriend."

She just stares at him like he's got two heads or something, her mouth opening and closing like a fish. His fist is clenched tight around the controller. His heart is racing. "What?" he snaps.

"Nothing." She looks away. "Sorry."

"Sorry for what? There's nothing to be sorry about!"

He stomps back to his room, almost slams the door before remembering it's the middle of the night and catching it just in time. He's still got the controller in his hand, the strap digging into his wrist. He tugs it off and throws it on the bed before throwing himself down after it.

He lies there in the dark for what feels like hours. He can hear Jun in the bathroom getting ready for bed. Not that he hates her or anything, but he kind of hopes she gets abducted by aliens in her sleep or something so he never has to talk to her again. It'd just make things easier.

Eventually he gets his phone out and turns it back on. There are three messages from Ken. The first one says to call him, the second one says never mind, he's going to bed. The third one was sent right after, and says happy V day ().

For some reason it makes him feel worse and better at the same time.

He texts Ken back and tells him his battery died, but that he'll be over after practice tomorrow. He falls asleep with his phone in his hand. In the morning his side is sore where he rolled over onto the Wii controller and the battery in his phone really has died.

The school must be trapped inside some sort of time-warp-field-thingy or something, because classes last for at least twice as long as they should. Even soccer practice seems to drag on forever and that's usually his favorite part of the day.

He doesn't stop at home after school, but he does stop at the drug store. He sets condoms and lube and a half-price box of chocolates on the counter. He keeps his eyes down and bolts out the door as soon as he pays. He's not sure if that's exactly progress or not, but it's something.

On the train he picks the price tag off the chocolates. The box is red and heart-shaped. He shoves it down to the bottom of his bag. His hand brushes the plastic bag with the other stuff in it and he can feel his cheeks heat up. He keeps his bag on his lap and tries to will away the sudden hard-on.

He takes the box of chocolates out again after he's transferred and spends half the trip staring down at it in his hands. It looks like it's probably got four pieces in it. Smallest one they had.

He eats them all. They're not even that good.

Ken is waiting for him in front of his apartment building. Daisuke waves as soon as he's close enough to tell for sure it's him. He forces himself not to run the rest of the way, but he can't stop grinning.

"Hey," Ken says, close enough to touch now. Close enough for Daisuke to put his hands on Ken's hips, to lean in and kiss him.

When Daisuke pulls away, he looks down at his feet and then grins at Ken, punching him on the shoulder. "So. The whole weekend, eh?"

Ken grins back. His face is flushed. "The whole weekend."

The elevator must be caught in the same time-slowing whatsit as the school, because Daisuke could swear they're waiting there like five hours. "Oh, hey, I got you something," he says, unzipping the front pocket of his bag. He holds out the Crunky. "Here."

"What's this for?"

Daisuke shrugs. "Just because."