Author: Takato Metallium
Fandom: Digimon Tamers
Characters: Jenrya Lee and Takato Matsuda, pairing will be/is Jenkato
Prompt: 012: Bound
Word Count: 2,485
Author's Notes: Set in an alternate universe where Takato is an agent of Hypnos, and the first Tamer to find himself partnered with a Digimon. Takato and Jenrya are both around 17-18 years of age.
The sound of a lighter being flicked open and shut echoed down the hallway in time with the clicking of the heels of his boots, his hands almost casually in the pockets of his pants and his head held high as he walked. His partner was sleeping, so this was a perfect time to check up on the captive.
Hypnos had files on everyone in Tokyo, and he had read up on Jenrya Lee's profile, knew everything about him from what he did on the weekends to the way he tied his shoelaces. He knew that the teenager in there had an older brother and sister attending university, a younger sister in junior high and lived with his parents.
"Mitsuo-san," he said, pulling the dark glasses he wore off his face as he regarded his superior with a cold expression. Yamaki stopped clicking his lighter and turned to look at him. He glanced out the corner of his eye at the tinted window looking into the interrogation room. "Has he stirred?"
"Just a few minutes ago," the older man replied, glancing in there as well before turning his attention back to the young agent. He tilted his head, noting the empty space at Takato's side with a curled lip. "Your partner, Matsuda?"
"Asleep." If he took note of the expression on Yamaki's face, he didn't say anything about it. Mitsuo-san's dislike of Digimon was well known to him. "I took the opportunity to read up on Lee's profile." Takato let his glasses slide into a pocket on his jacket. "If you don't mind my saying so, Mitsuo-san, he could be a good agent for Hypnos, given the right training. His files list him as a genius when it comes to computers and he has thirteen years worth of martial arts training. Not to mention that he now has a partner Digimon."
"If you think you can handle him, Matsuda." Yamaki looked at the young man over the rim of his dark-tinted glasses, pocketing his lighter. "Then he's all yours. The lab should be done analyzing his partner within the next half hour. Of course, the question is if you'll be able to convince him." Yamaki gave him a smirk as he turned on his heel, heading off in the direction of the laboratory, waving casually over his shoulder. "Good luck with that."
Raising an eyebrow as his superior left, Takato reached for the door leading into the interrogation room, closing it behind him. Lee looked over his shoulder from where he stood by the window on the other side of the room, scowling when he saw who it was. "You..."
"Yes, me." Takato sighed a little as he pulled out a chair, sitting down and lifting his legs up onto the table, crossing them at the ankle. "Let's cut to the chase, shall we?" he suggested, gesturing for the half-Chinese youth to take the other seat.
"Why am I bound to this room? And where's Terriermon?" he all but snapped, understandably irritated as he pulled away from the window and walked over to the desk, placing his hand on the backing of the other chair.
"Security reasons, and your partner's taking a few tests in our labs. Nothing serious," Takato added when he saw the Lee boy's eyes widen in anger, waving a hand as he leaned his head on his free one. "Guilmon went through the same ones when we arrived here. The tests aren't life-threatening. Once we have vitals on your partner and a profile to match, he'll be free to go."
He scoffed. "I find that hard to believe, coming from the one who was willing to delete Terriermon," Jenrya growled under his breath, but took the seat provided for him anyway. He studied the other boy for a moment, calculating grey eyes looking him over. "What do you want with me?"
"Tell me, Lee Jenrya...what do you think of Digimon?"
He blinked a little at the casual use of his name and at the question itself. "What do I think of them?" Jenrya looked completely put off, glancing to the side before shifting his gaze back to him. "To be honest, up until a few days ago I believed Digimon was only a game. Now all of a sudden they're real...Terriermon's real...I don't believe Digimon should be tools for fighting like they're programmed for. They're...well, Terriermon's my friend. I couldn't stand it if anything was to happen to him."
"I feel the same way about Guilmon," he said, his voice soft as he looked out the tinted window at Shinjuku before he shook his head. "I'll be honest with you, Lee-kun, when I arrived here the first time I was just like you in many ways. Naive, unaware of how the real world works." Out the corner of his eye he saw Jenrya's head snap up, the other about to retaliate before he wisely kept his mouth shut. "But you can't change their programming with a simple stroke of the key, not the with way they're Realized now."
Takato stood from his seat, crossing his arms behind his back and walking over to the window, his back to the other youth. "The thing is, Lee-kun, there has been Digimon coming to our world more often than you know or realize. Lately they have nearly doubled in numbers." He pressed his hand to the glass, over familiar store he could see far off in the distance. "Hypnos is doing all it can but there are two or three or four that slip through our carefully crafted defenses each day. There's only so much Guilmon and I can do by ourselves. I've learned that much."
He turned, looking at the slightly older boy out the corner of his eye. "Now that there's another Digimon with a Tamer, it doesn't have to be that way. I know you don't like the thought of Digimon fighting, Lee-kun, but this is the reality you have to face up. Let Realized Digimon run free and...they could end up killing someone."
Jenrya noticed the way the other boy's eyes darkened at those last few words, pursing his lips together. Something had happened to make him this jaded, this bitter and cold. He closed his eyes, trying to imagine what would happen to him if a Digimon killed Shuichon or any other member of his family.
"You don't have to answer straight away," he said, walking back over to Jenrya. He placed a hand on the back of the dark-haired Tamer's chair, letting his fingers slide across it. "Once our scientists are done running Terriermon's diagnostics, you're free to collect him and leave. But I must insist, Lee-kun, that you heed my warnings." Takato perched himself on the edge of the desk, leaning back on one of his hands and looking at him with a tilt of his head. "You can try and protect them all you want, but in the end all your efforts will be for naught if they are taken from you."
"I'll keep it in mind," Jenrya replied, arching a brow as he stood from his seat, looking at the boy he'd been locked in battle with merely hours ago. "Do I at least get your name?"
"You can have my name and my phone number if you like." Oh God, was that a joke? If Mitsuo-san knew he'd never let him live it down. Noticing the flush darken the older boy's cheeks Takato couldn't help but chuckle a little. "The name's Matsuda. Matsuda Takato."
"Matsuda?" Jenrya blinked before his eyes widened as the other Tamer slid from his perch and placed his hands in his pockets, walking towards the door. 'Matsuda as in Matsuda's Bakery? No wonder the kid's so bitter...' He remembered the news broadcast, how the two adult Matsudas had been found murdered and their kid gone. It had been chalked up to a kidnapping gone wrong or something if he remembered correctly.
Noticing Jenrya's expression, Takato sighed as he opened the door, gesturing with his head for him to go through. "Hypnos has ties to the media. Most of the Digimon incidents are covered up or not reported at all," he explained casually, walking out the door. "I'll take you to the labs." Once he glanced over his shoulder to make sure Lee was following him, he continued walking. "My parents were killed in the crossfire between Guilmon and another Digimon. I was nine years old. Mitsuo-san found me when Hypnos came to pick up the pieces. I've been working here ever since."
"So that's why you feel bound to this place," Jenrya summed up as he caught up to Takato easily with his long strides.
"Mmm-hmm. The workers here became my family. I live with one of the computer officers, Megumi Onodera. Even if I have a full-grown dinosaur for a partner, Mitsuo-san won't let me have my own apartment," he replied with an exasperated sigh and a roll of his eyes.
He chuckled a little. "It sounds like you and Mitsuo-san don't get along, Takato-kun."
"On the contrary. He's like an annoying, overbearing older brother." He looked at the other boy with a strange expression, stopping by a coffee dispenser and fishing around in his pocket for change. "Why did you call me that?"
Jenrya blinked. "What?"
"Added that suffix to my name." Finding the change, he slipped it into the machine and made his selection. "Coffee?"
"No thanks, I don't drink it." Jenrya watched him silently for a minute before answering his question. "It's the polite thing to do," he said, shrugging lightly as he watched the other teenager take the cup out from the hole in the machine. "It doesn't sound like you've had many friends."
"Everyone here just calls me Matsuda," Takato replied, stirring sugar around in his drink before licking at the stick and tossing it into the bin beside the machine. He took a sip of his coffee, then made a face before shrugging to himself. "Only Onodera-san and Guilmon call me by my name." He turned his attention back to Jenrya. "So to answer your question, no, I haven't had many friends."
They continued down the corridor in silence, Takato drinking his beverage while Jenrya walked with his hands in the pockets of his jeans, mulling over everything that he'd been told. As they turned down another hallway and they passed some of the workers, he turned his head to look at him. "Tell me, Takato-kun...if I agree to becoming an agent of this place...of Hypnos...what happens?"
Takato paused, his lips to the rim of his cup before he lowered it, looking at the older boy out the corner of his eye. "Your family will be given a cover story," he said, swirling what was left of his drink around in the paper cup before downing it and tossing it casually into a nearby bin. "You'll be moved into the apartment building where we all live, your name erased from government files, every trace of your existence gone. To the outside world, you'll just be another nameless face in the crowd." He crossed his arms behind his back. "I never had to have it happen to me so I can't tell you all the details."
"I see..." Jenrya closed his eyes in contemplation, pursing his lips together. He had assumed as such. They finally reached two double doors that had the word LABORATORY sprawled across them and Takato pushed one of them open, gesturing for him to step through.
Taking hold of two masks that hung from a hook to the side, he tossed one of them to Jenrya. "Put this on," he said as he slipped his own on over his mouth. "You never know what kind of chemicals they're dealing with here."
"I'll keep that in mind." Looking around as he was lead through the lab, Jenrya really had to wonder what kind of operation was going on here. Takato lead him to a separate room, wherein the young agent pulled his mask off and let it sit around his neck.
"Status report," he ordered as he closed the door once Lee had set foot inside.
"Ah! Matsuda-san." One of the scientists brushed off his lab coat and pulled his goggles away from his eyes. "This is fascinating really. You rarely bring us back a specimen, so we've been running all kinds of tests on the little monster in order to gather data."
"I'd be careful what you say, Fuikawa-san." He gestured to his companion. "This is Terriermon's Tamer, Lee Jenrya."
Fuikawa seemed to blanch at the dark look Jenrya was giving him, giving a slightly nervous laugh. "W-well, I don't mean all of our tests. Not the dangerous ones at least. Losing a fine specimen like him would be a waste."
"He's not a specimen," Jenrya growled, lip curling in disgust before his hand snapped out and took hold of the older man's shirt, yanking him down to his level. "Where. Is. Terriermon?"
"Moumentai, Jen." Both of the teenagers looked towards a bench in the far corner of the room where Terriermon sat, swinging his legs as he ate a cookie. One of the female scientists was removing the suction caps from his body and once she was done he hopped down, making his way over to his partner. "I'm fine. Sheesh. They just wanted to know a few things about the Digital World, so I told them." Terriermon licked his paw free of cookie crumbs before climbing onto his Tamer's shoulder.
Jenrya raised an eyebrow before he let go of Fuikawa's shirt. "As long as that was all they did to you..."
"Well, I got a butt probe." Terriermon grimaced. "Not a pleasant experience, let me tell you. Now I know how dogs on those vet programs feel."
"You watch too much TV."
Watching the exchange between Tamer and partner, Takato lowered his head, placing his hands in his pockets before turning away from them as one of the scientists handed Jenrya his D-Arc. "If you're done, I'll show you the way out."
"Heeeeeey, it's Crabby McCrabbypants. Wasn't I beating your ass a few hours ago?"
"Moumentai, Jen! Moumentai!"
When they got to the main entrance of the Hypnos building, Jenrya stepped out and turned towards him. "So...if I agree to what you told me...how do I find you?"
A slow smile curled its way across Takato's mouth before he tilted his head. "You'll know how. I imagine we'll be running into each other in when Digimon Realize in any case." He paused, about to let the door shut before he looked at Terriermon. "What does 'Moumentai' mean anyway?"
Terriermon giggled as Jenrya turned away from the building, waving goodbye with one of his ears. "It's Cantonese for 'take it easy'. And you REALLY need to take it easy, prissybritches. See you later~!"