If you were to ask me later on what I wanted the most, I could answer you straight away. But, then... no. I couldn't have.

Despite everything that had recently gone on, all the things that had only just died down, the adventure that grated on my very soul, but not in a bad way, I found that not everything had been finished. I figured, maybe with the end of those things, that it would end my own problems, in a way, too... or, I guess, that's just how it felt.

I think, somewhere, in my subconscious, in the back of my mind, I believed that with such a stressing problem (after problem) finally coming to the conclusion after a sharp impact and climax, would either ease me, or... what was that saying? What didn't kill you, made you stronger. I guess I believed I would be ready. I wasn't, though. Not as I hoped. It wasn't something I could just look over, like I'd hoped.

I'm not even sure when it began, to be honest. But we don't need a history lesson right now. It doesn't matter when it started, and it doesn't matter how. It doesn't matter that I never said anything, because nothing bad ever came of my silence. Just as nothing good really had. What matters the most is the present. Even the future... I didn't bother with thoughts of it. I didn't bother with silly fantasies anymore. I bothered with what I felt at that moment, and I knew, at that moment, that my crush on Daisuke endured. Strengthened. Bound me.

---

Flicking the fallen cracker into the grass away from him, Daisuke pouted in that, give-me-everything-you-ever-worked-for-up-for-me way. Irresistible. Or, at least, to me. In so many ways, Daisuke was just way too innocent. It almost put a coy smirk on my face as I walked up to him.

"Ken~!" He said, and despite the surprise that it was supposed to convey, I was no fool to the similar joy of my appearance in it. That was a good sign. I hoped. I also hoped it would remain for long minutes.

"I have to speak to you." I spat out quickly, almost viciously in my waning will power over myself, before I could ever handle my words well. He blinked at me in that innocent way I had formally predicted to you, and it crushed a little bit of me. Not enough to bring me down from my selected task. Poor Daisuke.

"Yeah, go ahead, I'm right here! I had something to tell you, too!" He was always so happy, grinning at me. Irresistible. I thought I may have previously stated that he was that way for me, before, though. Or was that just my egotistical self putting a vent on my five senses? Filtering out anything else? I wasn't necessarily overly egotistical, but I would not deny that even now, I was proud of myself in many ways, in reverse ways than formally I was.

"I don't want to linger, so I hope you'll understand my lack of further explanation," was this too complicated of speech for Daisuke to understand? I hoped not, "but over time, I've grown feelings for ..."

He was silent. I went silent. It was this silence in the past that had restrained events to neutrality, or that muted the hints I gave (or never saw from) him.

He blinked once, (adorable, my mind screamed at me), and then replied, slowly at first, "You didn't finish..."

I swallowed hard, felt myself sweating in my nervousness. I thought I was stronger than this. I thought I was ready, passive, clear, crystal in my path. Before I could say much more, he manually shut my mouth with an undeniable grin, as he stated with a nervous enthusiasm, "But since you seem so nervous, I'll tell you first..."

---

When I remember back to this day, I am unsure of my thoughts on what happened afterwards. Either way, my continued relationship with Daisuke, be it any way your heart and mind desires to perceive it, was well rounded and sanded from public viewing. Or, at least, I thought it had been thoroughly, but possibly, I had missed a spot (or Daisuke had slipped in his own handiwork), because I saw the way Taichi smirked at me knowingly some years later at a reunion.