Title: Daisuke and Ken's Big Tokyo Adventure
Author: Alice
Fandom(s): Digimon Adventure 02
Spoilers: Takes place pre-series.
Pairings/Characters: Daisuke/Ken
Summary: When a 4-year-old Ken gets lost in Tokyo City, he meets a young Daisuke, who has wandered away from his parents, and the two children team up and set out on a big adventure in Tokyo.
Part: 1/1
Rating: PG
Warnings: You may be smothered by the cute. Enter with extreme caution.
Disclaimer: Toei and Bandai own Digimon, those greedy bastards.
Author's Notes: Why so emo, Daiken fandom? 

Daisuke and Ken's Big Tokyo Adventure

"Hey, mom? You know that if I get accepted here, we'll have to move to Tokyo, right? Or I'll have to come live with some relatives or something… Do we have any relatives living in Tokyo?"

"Yes, dear, your cousins, but don't worry about that. If you get accepted, we'll gladly move here! Your father is already looking for a job so that we'll be secure."

"It's more expensive here than in Tamachi, mom."

"Well then he'll take on two jobs! Really, sweetie, leave all that to your father and I and you just focus on your interview, okay?"

A sigh. "Alright, momma."

A door opened to their right and mother and son both looked up, expectantly. The other child sitting to her right continued to stare at the floor.

A finely dressed woman who looked all professional and very much like the stereotypical strict teacher stood in the doorway with a small clipboard that she was peering at over the rim of her glasses. She raised her gaze to the small family. "Ichijouji Osamu, I presume?" she said, looking towards the older of the two boys. Osamu nodded. "Come with me, please," the woman commanded, opening the door a bit wider for him to walk in past her. "And Mrs. Ichijouji? I need you to come along too, we have some questions for you."

"Oh? Well, then, um… Ken?"

The younger boy looked up at his mother and blinked. "Yes, mamma?"

"You'll be alright if I leave you here for just a few minutes, won't you? I'll be right back, I promise!"

Ken nodded. "Sure, mamma."

Mrs. Ichijouji smiled and patted her son on the head before she ushered her eldest into the room. The woman, who Ken assumed to be Osamu's interviewer, gave the child a discontent look before closing the door, leaving Ken alone in silence.

Ken sighed and kicked his small legs absentmindedly. This was so boring! It was the middle of the day and sunlight was filtering in through the window opposite him. He wanted to go outside and play. And now that he thought of it, hadn't he seen a really nice park on the way here? He pondered for a moment. Yes, he definitely had! And it couldn't have been too far away, probably just around the corner of the street.

He glanced at the clock on the wall. Five minutes had passed already. He threw up his arms in dismay. That was far too long for a child to sit around and do nothing, and it seemed clear to him that his mother wasn't coming back for at least another five minutes.

Ten whole minutes. He was going to go insane.

Ken slid himself gracefully off the bench and padded towards the stairs. The building was large, but he remembered pretty well the way they had come up, mostly because the exit to the building was at the bottom of the staircase. It was an easy trip. When he reached the door, he cast a weary glance back over his shoulder to see if his mom had come out of the room and was looking for him. No one was there. With a slight pout on his lips, Ken pushed the doors open. Once out on the street, Ken had to raise his arms to shield himself from the sudden blinding light. His eyes quickly adjusted and he lowered them, looking around in awe.

Tokyo was nothing like Tamachi or Odaiba. It was… well, it was bigger. And this was coming from someone who was small compared to most things in the world. Everything looked big to Ichijouji Ken. But Tokyo was somehow noticeably bigger and definitely busier. There were people everywhere. It was somewhat scary and Ken found himself keeping close to the walls. He looked around and decided to go right. He remembered Osamu directing his mother to make a right turn to get to this building, so it followed reason that he too would go right.

Ken turned a corner and froze. The street was long. There was no park in sight. But he was positive, absolutely positive, that he was going the right way. "Maybe it's around that corner…" Ken said to himself and, deciding this must be the case for where else would it be, he clenched his little fists and set a determined look on his face and proceeded to march purposefully down the street.

There were a lot of people there. They hurried about, dashing across the streets, running up to each other, squealing in high pitched voices. No one took notice of Ken (though quite a few people bumped into him, and one lady came dangerously close of knocking him into the middle of the road). Ken naturally gravitated towards the buildings once again. A person would have to have very good and very deliberate aim to knock him into the street from there, he assumed.

It was a long and perilous journey that lasted a good few minutes but Ken came out triumphant. He grinned as he turned the corner onto another street.

A few seconds later he found himself thrown back and landing painfully on his bottom. "Oww," he whined, rubbing his backside and wincing, before looking up into what had hit him.

A large man appeared.

Now this was no ordinary large man, for as previously stated, Ken was small compared to most things, and by saying "a large man appeared," the large man in question could very well be a normal sized man but be considered large by Ken's standards.

That was not the case. This was a large, large man with bulging muscles and beady eyes the likes of which are often thought to be inaccessible in the natural world.

Ken was reasonably afraid.

The large, large man seemed to take Ken's look of horror as a look of disdain and glared at the small child. "What'cha lookin' at, little man?" he said, his voice deep and gravelly.

Ken shuddered and opened his mouth to respond but all that came out was a tiny squeak. The large, large man bent down to get a closer look at Ken. "You quite a small fry, ain't cha?" he said, seeming to not realize that Ken was a 4-year-old and rather just a small adult. Or a teenager. Someone acceptable to beat around.

"Little arms and little legs, and yet 'cha give me dat' look like you wanna mess with me or somethin'."

Ken shook his head.

"AND THEN, ohoho, and then ya try and deny it, oh well, sorry, I don't play dat' game." The large, large man cracked his knuckles. "Well that's just fine. But no one looks at me wrongly and gets away with it. Hold still, little man." He raised his fist in the air and Ken let out a whimper of terror and raised his arms to shield his face.

No contact was made. Instead, Ken heard a something small collide with a larger mass followed by a surprised "UNF!" He peered through his fingers and saw the large, large man turn around, angrily. There was a stone on the ground by his foot. Ken glanced past the large, large man and saw, standing behind him, stones in hand, a determined looking small child with spiky reddish hair. "Hey bully," the kid called to the large, large man, "leave him alone!" And the kid threw another stone at the large, large man.

It hit him squarely between the eyes. The large, large man stood there, mortified, before he let out an angry growl and lunged at the kid.

There were many downsides to being a small kid fighting a large, burly man. Most of those reasons were various sorts of injuries, because really, one hit and you're through. But the greatest advantage is that big burly men tend to have very slow reflexes in comparison to small, lightweight children. And for the redhead boy, this was all too true, as he was able to easily sidestep the large, large man and dart past him. He grabbed Ken's hand and pulled him to his feet in one fluid motion and suddenly Ken found himself running with the boy, back past the large, large man (who had tumbled to the ground and was struggling to get to his feet) and down the road, weaving in and out of crowds of people, past rows and rows of shops.

Ken could hear a loud thundering behind them as the large, large man gave chase. He let out a small whimper and was surprised when the other boy gave his hand a reassuring squeeze. He glanced at the redhead, who was grinning widely, as if this was all a game. "Don't worry!" the boy called to him. "Up ahead, we'll make our escape!" And laughing the whole way, the boy pulled Ken suddenly to the right into a small alley way between some shops. There was a crash as the large, large man tried to get in after them, but he was too big to fit. It was the perfect escape, a place only small people could reach.

Still laughing, the redhead pulled Ken into another alley, and then another, then out onto a completely different street. Ken's eyes widened. There, across the street, was the park he'd been looking for. As if reading his mind, the other boy looked both ways cautiously before darting with Ken across and into the calm, green area. They kept running even then until finally they collapsed under a small glen of large, green trees.

They lay on the grass, panting, the redhead still giggling over their little adventure. "D-did you see the look on that guys face? He was so confused! Shows him not to mess with kids, they gang up on him and take him down!" He laughed again. Ken blinked.

"It… wasn't really like a gang up, though… I mean, I didn't attack him or anything."

It was the redheads turn to blink. "That's true." Another blink and then a wide, goofy grin. "Oh well, we still beat him!" He punched the air in victory. "Motomiya scores another goal!"

"A… goal?"

"You know, like in soccer?"

"That's a… game, right?"



"Do you play?"


"You should! It's super fun! My dad taught me how to play but he says he thinks that someday I'll be even better than him, and, he kinda sucks so I believe it."

"That… does sound like fun, I guess."

"So what's your name?" His grin seemed to have gotten bigger with every word out of his mouth. It was a little overbearing.

"Um… Ken."

"I'm Daisuke!"

"N-nice to meet you, and um… thank you for saving me."

Daisuke blinked, then frowned. "What's with this polite attitude?"

Ken pouted. "My mamma taught me to be polite… it's… it's polite!"

A pause. "Really?"

"Really what?"

"Being polite is polite?"

Ken frowned. "I'd… I'd think so."

"But how?"

"Well because polite is… it's polite to be polite!"

"But like… I don't know, my parents always say it's polite to be yourself and stuff, so if being polite isn't you, then isn't it rude to be polite?"

Ken's eyes widened. "What? H-how did you…?"

Daisuke's brow wrinkled as if he was in deep concentration. "I don't know. It makes sense to me. Being polite isn't in my character so; it would be rude to someone to act polite when it isn't really me."

There was a long, awkward pause.

"I-I don't think that means what you think it means, D-Daisuke."

"So are you new here? Did you just move?"

Ken shook his head. "No, I'm just here visiting… I live in Tamachi."

"Tamachi?! But that's… Tamachi is… Hey, Ken?"


"Where's Tamachi?"

"I'm not sure."


Ken began to pull at the grass and examine it. Daisuke kicked his legs as if he wanted to get up and start running around again. Ken had no doubt he wanted just that.

"Your parents let you come to visit Tokyo by yourself, Ken? Maaaan, I wish my parents had that much trust in me!"

"No, my mamma's here. My brother, too."

"Really? Where are they?"

Ken looked up, wide-eyed. He pushed himself into a standing position and gazed out over the park and beyond, to the streets and the buildings that lay there. Not a one of them looked familiar. "I'm… not sure."

"Oh. Are you lost?"

Ken's eyes grew even wider and all of a sudden tears started prickling at the corners of his eyes. "Y-yeah, I… think I am…" His whole body began to shake. It was one thing to be away from his mom and know how to make his way back to her, but their escape from the large, large man had completely thrown him off. He had no idea where they were now; let alone how to get back to his mom. And that terrified him. What if he couldn't get back? What if he was lost forever to wander the streets of Tokyo alone? What if the large, large man came back? What if…?!

Ken promptly started to bawl.

Daisuke flailed. "Waaah, what's wrong with you, crying so suddenly?! H-hey, calm down, calm down…!"

"I… I… I want my mommy!" Ken whimpered, curling up on himself, burying his face in his knees.

"Whah, where did you last see her, then?!" Daisuke asked, standing and looking around frantically. "I'll help you find her!"

"I don't… I don't… I don't know! I don't know what the place was!"

"Gaaaaaaah," Daisuke moaned, tugging at his hair. "Um. Um. Hey!" His face brightened immediately. "I have an idea!"


"Let's get married!"

Ken stopped crying immediately and looked at Daisuke in shock, his face wet with tears and snot, his pant legs damp from them. "What?"

"Yeah!" Daisuke said excitedly, thoroughly pleased with himself. "My sister, she- whenever she gets angry or upset, she starts talking about she wants to get married one day and then she's all happy and stuff again! So let's get married! That'll make you happy, right?"

Ken blinked. Daisuke beamed. Dead silence.

"My parents… they talk about their wedding and it makes them happy…" Ken muttered, as if trying to find a way to determine if Daisuke was telling the truth or not. "I… I guess so…"

"Good!" Daisuke grinned that goofy grin again that made Ken feel so strangely small in comparison. "Don't worry, Ken, I'll be a great husbando! And if I'm not… um, you can divorce me."

"H-husbando?" Ken asked. "Y-you mean husband?"

Daisuke shook his head. "No. Husbando. And you will be my waifu."

"You… mean wife?"

"No. Waifu."

"W-what's a waifu? And what's a divorce?!"

"A waifu is a person married to a husbando. And a divorce is… I don't know but whenever my dad makes my mom angry she starts yelling about how she wants a divorce and that makes my dad upset so I think it's something waifus do to make their husbandos upset or something. I don't know. But if I don't make you happy, you can want a divorce. I'll understand. I don't want to make you unhappy."

Ken pouted. "T-thanks, I guess." He sniffled and Daisuke immediately plopped down on the grass beside him and held out his arm.

"Here," he said, "you can use my sleeve to wipe your nose."

Ken shook his head. "'s gross." He reached into his pockets and pulled out some tissues and wiped his tears away and blew his nose before stuffing them back in his pocket. "Mamma always makes sure I have lots of tissues whenever I leave the house," he informed Daisuke matter-of-factly.

"Oh. Okay. So, wait here, future waifu, I'mma go get you a… what's it called? The things they wear at weddings?"

Ken thought for a moment. "A… dress?"

"No, no, the thing over the face? Never mind, I'mma go get you one. Stay here."

Daisuke turned and ran off, leaving Ken to sit and wait for him to return.

Luckily for Ken, Daisuke was much more prompt than Ken's mother and returned in less than five minutes with a somewhat dingy piece of fabric. Ken wasn't quite sure he wanted to know where Daisuke got it, but Daisuke was too busy trying to roll it up and make it look like whatever it was he wanted it to look like. After he was satisfied that it looked as close to perfect as he could get it, he laid it on top of Ken's head and part of the fabric dangled down in front of Ken's face.

Ken blinked. "Daisuke?"


"I can't see anything."

"Oh. Um. I guess you can hold it up, then?"

Ken obliged, holding the strip of fabric just above eye level so he could see Daisuke. Daisuke stood straight and cleared his throat. "I saw this on TV once," he informed Ken, trying hard not to grin and to look professional.

"Okay, so, do you, Ken, take me, Daisuke, to be your cool husbando? To smile for me, laugh for me, and all around be cheerful for me but only if you actually mean it so that we can be happy together?"

Ken nodded. "Sure."

Daisuke grinned. "And do I, Daisuke, take you, Ken, to be my adorable waifu? To make you laugh and feed you good food and still love you even when that food makes you get fat, and to protect you from bullies on the playground?"


"Um, Daisuke?"


"…Do you?"

"What? Oh! Yes, I do!" He cleared his throat again. "I now announce us married! Drop it, waifu," he added to Ken, quietly, and Ken quickly did so. Daisuke moved forward and lifted the make-shift veil up and kissed Ken the corner of his mouth.

Ken squeaked. "W-what was that?"

Daisuke tilted his head to the side, looking confused. "What do you mean? Isn't that happens when you get married?"

"I-I don't know, is it?"

"I think so. That's what happened in the show I watched."

"Oh." Ken seemed placated by this. "Um, okay."

Daisuke grinned and kissed Ken on the cheek. Ken giggled, despite himself. "That tickles…!"

"Really?" Daisuke seemed surprised by this and kissed Ken on the cheek again. Ken's reaction was the same. "So that makes you happy?" Daisuke asked, grinning once more. Ken nodded, his own lips curled upwards in a happy smile. Daisuke beamed, proud of himself.

"Now come on, waifu, as a good husbando I will help you find your mamma!" He took Ken by the hand and the two set off, back to the street. "Pick a direction, waifu!"

Ken looked left, then right, and then tugged a bit at the veil still placed on his head. "Ummm… right!"

"Right it is!" Daisuke cheered and they proceeded to the left.

They continued on for a good ten minutes, turning down this street and that road, and Ken's hopes were quickly diminishing. Daisuke seemed to notice this, frowning as he glanced back and Ken's sad pout grew more and more prominent. This was not a good sign. As a good husbando, it was his job to make sure Ken smiled lots. Ken wasn't smiling. This needed to be corrected.

Daisuke gasped, suddenly. He knew exactly how to cheer Ken up. "Come on, waifu!" he said, hurrying down the road, clutching Ken's hand tightly, and coming to a stop in front of a small jewelry store. "Wait here," he said, and hurried inside the shop.

Ken stood in the doorway, watching Daisuke through the glass window, and marveled at how people had a tendency to make him wait today.

Daisuke hustled around the small shop, looking at various displays before one in particular caught his eye. It was shiny. Very, very shiny. He grinned. Shiny things always made people happy. "Hey mister," he called to the man behind the store counter, who looked over at him in surprise. Daisuke picked up the small, shiny necklace and hurried over to the counter, placed the necklace down on it before rummaging in his pockets. After a few seconds he produced some coins, a piece of gum, and several balls of lint and slammed them dramatically down on the table. "I want to buy this for my waifu!"

The man blinked. "Your… waifu? You mean wife?"

Daisuke frowned. "Why does everyone keep saying that? I mean what I mean!"

The counter man raised his hands in defense. "Alright, alright kid, let me see what you got here." He separated the coins from the gum and the lint and counted them, his frown deepening as he did. "Kid, you got 477 yen here."

Daisuke nodded. "Perfect!"

"Not really. This necklace is expensive, kid. I can't sell it to you for so little."

Daisuke's face fell. "But… but… it's for my waifu…" he looked out the window at Ken, who was busy kicking the ground idly and didn't notice his husbando's wayward woes.

The man followed his gaze and his eyes widened as he saw the sad boy. He glanced down at Daisuke, then back to Ken and sighed. "Hey kid? Listen, I can't give you this necklace, but look here…" He stepped out from behind the counter and hurried over to a display of wood carving necklaces. He searched them over before finding one near the bottom shaped like a tree. He brought it over to Daisuke and handed it to him. "Do you know what this is?"

"It's a tree," Daisuke said, frowning, as though he thought the man believed him to be stupid.

The man chuckled. "Yes it's a tree, but do you know what it means?"

Daisuke shook his head.

"Trees… trees are like friendships, and love. You plant the seeds and hope with all your strength that it grows, and if you wish for it hard enough, soon it will take root and grow big and strong in a beautiful tree that withstands the test of all of time. It takes time, certainly, but the end result is always worth the wait. But this tree," he pointed to the necklace in Daisuke's hand. "This is no ordinary tree. It has a special charm on it."

"A charm? You mean like magic?" Daisuke asked, excitedly.

"Just like magic," the man said with a laugh. "Legends say that if you give this necklace to someone you care about deeply, and they accept it, then no matter how much time has passed, and how far apart you may find yourselves, inevitably, you will always find your way back to each other."

Daisuke stared at the man, his mouth a perfect O shape for the duration of the man's explanation. At the end of it, he looked down at the seemingly plain looking necklace in his hand. "Wow…" he said, awed, before throwing the counter man a wide, appreciative smile. "I guess this is a lot better than something shiny, right?"

The man nodded.

Daisuke punched the air. "Motomiya scores another goal!" he cheered. "Thanks a lot, mister! Waifu will love it!"

"No problem, kid," the counter man said, moving back into his work place and placing the yen Daisuke had left into the cash register. He pocketed the gum.

Daisuke darted out of the store and grabbed Ken by the hand. Ken, who had been staring intently at the ground, looked up in surprise. He opened his mouth to speak but stopped when Daisuke held up the tree necklace. "Present for waifu!" he declared, proudly handing it to Ken.

Ken blinked. "You… got me a present?"

"Yep!" Daisuke said, cheerfully. "The guy in the store said its magic, too, something like, if you give it to someone you love, you'll always find them again! Or something like that, anyway." He couldn't stop grinning. "You like it, waifu?"

Ken nodded, slowly, looking from the modest gift to the proud boy. He smiled, softly. "Thank you, Da- husbando."

Ken undid the clasp of the necklace and placed it around his neck, re-clasping it. "How do I look?"

"Cute!" Daisuke said, nodding fiercely.

Ken was about to reply when a yell ripped through the air.


Daisuke and Ken turned quickly. There, at the end of the road, looking at them with absolute murder in his beady little eyes, was the large, large man. Ken whimpered. Daisuke glared. He reached out and took Ken's hand in his and the two turned and bolted.

They could hear the large, large man not too far behind him. "H-husbando!" Ken yelled, glancing over his shoulder. "H-he's catching up!"

"Don't worry, waifu!" Daisuke called back, reassuringly. "I gots an idea!"

Ken nodded, hoping Daisuke actually knew what he was doing. He had many doubts. Most of them justified.

"Where are we going?" he asked.

"Somewhere," Daisuke muttered as they turned a corner. Suddenly he grinned. "Up there!"

Ken looked forward and blinked.

Tokyo Tower.

Ken suddenly had every desire to stop and let the large, large man get a hold of him. The Tower before them had far too ominous a feel, as if every bad thing to ever happen in an anime or something happened there.

But that was just silly.

"Let's go up into the Tower!" Daisuke called and before Ken could properly protest, he found himself being pulled into the tall, red building. All too soon they lost the large, large man as they climbed higher and higher up the Tower.

"Hey waifu!" Daisuke said, as they reached the highest they could go. "Come over here!" He ushered Ken over to the window and pointed out, overlooking the vast and dangerously beautiful city of Tokyo as the sun began to set in the distance. "You like it?"

Ken stared. "It's… different. New."

"So that's a yes, right?"


"Told you I was gonna take care you," Daisuke, nodding. "I did good?"

"Yeah," Ken said, smiling, "you did good."

"Hey!" Daisuke exclaimed, startling Ken a bit. "You smiled again! You have a cute smile, you should do it more!"

Ken pouted, embarrassed. "T-thank you, husbando…"

"I'm lucky," Daisuke announced. "I have a cute waifu."

"A-and I'm lucky, too," Ken said. "I have a brave husbando."

"We make a good team, then!" Daisuke chuckled. "One of my better ideas, us getting married was."


The two turned around just in time for Ken to be crushed into his mother's arms. "Ken! Oh, Ken, sweetie, where did you run off to, I thought I'd lost you! I told you to stay there, that I'd be right back and I came out and you were gone!"

"M-mamma," Ken said, surprised, and he could see Osamu standing behind his mother, looking horrified and angry and so, so relieved all at once.

"Don't do that again," he said, quietly.

Ken frowned. "I-it's alright, mamma, I'm fine," he said, trying to reassure her, when suddenly another cry cut through the air.


Daisuke groaned. "Jun…"

A moment later a girl around Osamu's age, with hair just as red and just as spiky as Daisuke's, ran up and gave the boy a sharp smack on the head. "OW!" he yelled, clutching his head and backing away from her. "Don't do that, Jun!"

"What was the meaning of just running off like that?!" Jun demanded, tapping her foot impatiently on the ground. "You had mother worried sick!"

"Not you," Daisuke commented, dryly, glaring up at her.

Jun frowned and opened her mouth but quickly shut it, her mind changed. "Don't ever do anything like that again, Daisuke! What were you even doing?"

Daisuke pointed to Ken, who was still being smothered by his mother. "Jun," he said, seriously, "this is my waifu. Can I keep him?"

Jun blinked. Mrs. Ichijouji stared. Osamu frowned. Ken blushed. Daisuke continued to stare at his sister, determined.

"You mean, like… have him come live at our house?"

Daisuke nodded.

"Um, no."

Daisuke flailed. "But… he's my waifu! I have to take care of him!"

"Ken dear," Mrs. Ichijouji said, suddenly, "what is this thing?" She was holding the make-shift veil Daisuke had made for Ken.

Daisuke pointed at the object. "That's from our wedding! We gots married! You have to let him stay with me!"

Jun shook her head. "No can do, little bro. Sorry."

Daisuke looked horrified.

Ken coughed. "Um, mamma?"

Everyone turned to look at Ken. He gulped. "Um… can Daisuke, I mean, uh, husbando… can he come live with us?"

"N-no, dear," Mrs. Ichijouji said, sadly, patting her son his head. "He has his own family to go home to."

"But… but," Ken said, tears welling up in his eyes as he tried to find some good argument but finding none dissolved into quiet sobs. "But I… I want him to stay…"

"I'm sorry, Ken," his mother said, wiping away his tears with her sleeve. "That's just not the way things work, dear…"

She picked him up and he buried his face in her shoulder. She turned to Jun and Daisuke, the latter of which looked to be on the verge of tears himself. "I'm sorry for the trouble," she apologized to them. "He's not normally like this."

"I'm sorry, too," Jun said, grabbing hold of Daisuke. "My brother's a little trouble maker."

"'m not!" Daisuke complained, trying hard to stop himself from crying. "But… but, don't take waifu away!" He begged Mrs. Ichijouji, who shook her head sadly.

"I have to. Ken has to come home with me."

Daisuke started to cry. "But… who's gonna protect him from bullies?"

"That would be me," said Osamu, stepping forward to rest his hand on Ken's back. "I'll look after him. But I do appreciate that you did take care of him when I wasn't there." He offered Daisuke a small smile. "Thanks."

Daisuke nodded, tears streaming down his cheeks. "No problem."

"It's getting late," Mrs. Ichijouji said, glancing out at the darkening sky. "If we want to catch our train home, we're going to have to leave now." She turned back to Daisuke and Jun. "Nice meeting you both!"

"We'd best be heading home, too," Jun said to Daisuke and then, to Mrs. Ichijouji, "Nice meeting you too! Have a safe ride home."

Mrs. Ichijouji nodded then turned and, with Osamu behind her, they headed for the exit. Ken glanced over her shoulder back at Daisuke, and unable to speak through his sobs, he raised his hand and gave a weak wave. Daisuke waved back, sadly. Ken stopped, suddenly and looked down, before raising his hand once more, fist clenched tightly around something. Daisuke had to squint to figure out what Ken was holding, but when he did, he couldn't help but smile, hopefully.

It was the necklace with the carved tree pendant.

Trees are like friendships, and love. You plant the seeds and hope with all your strength that it grows, and if you wish for it hard enough, soon it will take root and grow big and strong in a beautiful tree that withstands the test of all of time. It takes time, certainly, but the end result is always worth the wait. But this is no ordinary tree. It has a special charm on it. Legends say that if you give this necklace to someone you care about deeply, and they accept it, then no matter how much time has passed, and how far apart you may find yourselves, inevitably, you will always find your way back to each other.

the end.