Disclaimer: I do not own Digimon. Toei Animation does. I do however own Aizawa, but that's nothing to boast about.

Friends To The End

Matt sat in waiting bench in the hallway outside the principal's office with his head buried in his hands and moaned.

How did he always end up in this type of situation?

"Hey, Matt, you alright? Are you finally feeling those bruises Aizawa pummeled into you?" asked a voice above his head.

Oh, that's right, Matt thought darkly as he lifted his face from his hands to show off the unsightly black eye he was now sporting and glared at his so-called best friend.

Tai's concerned expression quickly melted into one of trying terribly hard to clamp down a wide grin.

"Laugh and you die," Matt growled warningly.

"Geez, Matt, I'm sorry but… that's a beauty of a shiner you got there! I wonder if that's going to become your new look: Matt Ishida, Lone Rebel, Ruffian, and Rogue!" Tai cackled then winced at the pain that flared up in his split lip.

"It takes one person to be a lone rebel. If I recall correctly, you were right there along with me decking out punches yourself!" Matt snapped then whimpered as he clasped a hand to his aching jaw. "This is all your fault anyway."

"My fault? I'm not the one who jumped the school's champion wrestler and tried to strangle him in a headlock," Tai defended chuckling in fond remembrance before clutching at his sore ribs.

"You goaded him, Tai! He never would have said those things if you had just left him alone!" Matt said.

"He was bullying some younger kids, terrifying them out of their minds." Tai said, his face darkening. "I couldn't just stand by and watch. I could have handled him you know. You didn't have to step in."

Matt gave a derisive snort as he recalled the scene he had stumbled upon exiting band class: three frightened lower graders cowering in a protective huddle, Aizawa, the school's biggest, meanest heavyweight towering over them, and Tai, effectively placing himself in harm's way in front of their tormentor.

He hadn't wanted to get involved. There was no need, not when you could just walk a few doors down to the teacher's lounge, tell them about the hazardous situation going on in the hallway and let them deal with it. Why did Tai have do things the hard way?

"Why don't you pick on someone your own size, Aizawa?" he had heard Tai say. "This really isn't good for a guy of your reputation. Is this the kind of example you want to set for all your future cronies? Be like Aizawa who only bullies the ones smaller than himself because he's too weak to handle a real fight?"

It had been really stupid to think he could just walk away, not after all the adventures and battling evil monsters that the two of them had gone through together. Still, he had tried. He knew Tai was more than capable of defending himself against Aizawa. The boy may have been more large and muscular, but Tai had brains and speed on his side.

But what Aizawa had dished out next hadn't been a physical blow.

"Butt out, Kamiya, this doesn't concern you. What's the matter? Trying to be hero and make new friends now that your little group of rejects has split up and deserted you?"

He could still see the flash of shock and hurt that had blossomed across Tai's face at those words. Matt's head had spun. That wasn't true, was it? Sure, everyone had been going down different paths lately, but that didn't mean they were drifting apart did it? Okay, he hadn't seen much of Tai or any other of the Digidestined aside from school recently, but that didn't mean their friendship was falling apart did it? Surely, Tai didn't believe this great lumberjack?

Tai's pained expression said otherwise.

Aizawa had laughed goonishly, "You're all alone, Kamiya. Face the truth: your friends grew sick and tired of hanging around a loser like you and moved on."

Something inside Matt had snapped. He couldn't stand listening to Aizawa's poisoned barbs anymore. He couldn't stand watching Tai drink it all in so accepting. So he had snapped and had done something extremely foolish and rash and very out of character for him—something very… Tai-ish actually.

He had hurled himself at Aizawa, leaped on his back and flung his arms around the larger boy's neck in a stranglehold.

"Matt!" Tai had yelled in surprise.

"You idiot, Tai!" he had shouted at him angrily. "How could you doubt our friendship like that?!"

Tai had shaken his head as if clearing away fog. "You're right. My bad," he had said, grinning sheepishly in admonishment.

"Ish-i-daaa," Aizawa had gurgled through blue lips as he struggled for air. "You're… dead!"

Then Matt's advantage of surprise had been lost as Aizawa had reached back one long, limbering arm, dragged him bodily over his head, ripping himself free of the chokehold, and threw him to the floor, knocking the wind out of him.

"You're gonna pay for that, you blond, pretty boy punk!" Aizawa had snarled, curling his meaty hand into a balled fist preparing to throw a punch hard enough that it was liable to send teeth flying.

Then Aizawa had given a startled grunt, his eyes had rolled up into forehead and he had toppled over where he had stood due to Tai braining him in the back of his head with the body of Matt's guitar that he had snatched out of its case where its owner had dropped it.

Unfortunately, Aizawa, being more brawn than brains, there hadn't been very many brain cells to kill off to start with, so Tai only had managed to knock him out for the short span of five seconds, which had been enough for Matt to scramble up from his vulnerable position of the floor.

The three kids that had been the object of Aizawa's bullying had taken off, streaking down the hallway shrieking bloody murder and the teachers had arrived on the scene to see three students engaging in violent brawl, two against one.

And thus was the story behind Matt and Tai waiting outside the principal's office for a harsh reprimand and punishment.

Matt was brought back to the present by the sound of a chord being struck and ringing its note brazenly into the air. He looked up and saw that Tai had opened his music case and was holding his guitar in his hands like an AK-47 rifle weapon.

Remembering how he had bashed Aizawa in the head with it hard enough to knock the big lug unconscious, Matt edged backwards a ways on the bench warily.

"I dedicate this song to you, Matt!" Tai declared stoutly, flinging the strap over his head and readying his hands on the strings. "For a truer, bluer friend there never was!"

Matt could only gape in a mixture of astonishment and disbelief as Tai strummed his guitar horribly off-key and proceeded to belt out the most ridiculous serenade he had ever heard in his entire life.

"His name was Matt, he was a rockstar! With blond hair that held no bleach, oh yes, he was a peach! And despite being rather vain, he attacked that wretched bane, with no qualms about his appearance, he struck with righteous adherence!" Tai warbled jauntily, losing himself in the song. "He gave it all he got, and by god, he gave a lot! No, I'll never doubt no more, he's shown me what friends are fooooooooor—!"

Matt leaped up and grabbed at the guitar before his ears bled from further audible abuse.

"What the hell do you think you are you doing?!" he hissed, his face a flaming red.

"I'm singing a thank-you song to express my gratitude of how much your friendship means to me. I thought it would make you feel better," Tai explained, pursing his lips into his trademark pout, momentarily forgetting about the deep cut on the bottom one and yelping when the pain reminded him.

"That wasn't singing—that was a dying cat yowling for someone to please shoot it and put it out of its misery!" Matt exclaimed.

"Don't be a critic just because you're jealous of my creative genius," Tai sniffed airily. "Now let go. I haven't finished yet."

"Oh yes, you are finished! And that's my guitar and you've already roughed it up enough by using it as a mallet to the back of Aizawa's head, so put it down now!" Matt ordered.

"If it didn't break then, it's certainly not going to break now when I'm playing it!" Tai protested as he and Matt played a game of tug-of-war back and forth with it.

The end result was a string snapping in two and whipping back to catch Tai in the cheek, leaving a thin cut mark. Only Tai could find a way to make a metal guitar string snap.

"You broke it! You broke it!" Matt shrieked in horror.

"Chill, Matt, there's like…" Tai paused to count. "Five more of those things on here. It can't have made that much of a difference."

Matt's shoulder shook with silent rage and his fingers began to twitch violently as they slowly inched their way towards Tai's unsuspecting throat…

The door to the principal's office swung open and two-hundred and fifty pounds of Aizawa strode out and he leered at the two hulkishly as he passed by, "You're gonna get it now, Ishida, Kamiya."

Tai said nothing, only swung Matt's guitar over his shoulder, gripping it by the neck and took a threatening stance like that of a baseball player stepping up to bat.

Aizawa paled at the sight and sped down the hallway without another word, displaying the gigantic swollen lump sticking out of the back of his head for all to see.

Matt stared at the retreating figure's back until it had disappeared around a corner then turned to look at Tai who gazed back at him rather smugly and then they both burst into triumphant fit of laughter… which soon transformed into groans of pain as they staggered back to the bench and sat down, yielding to their injuries gained in the tide of battle.

The sound of someone clearing their throat made them glance over to see the principal himself, a plump, balding man, standing in the doorway to the office, polishing his glasses and grinning like a crocodile bearing down on its prey.

"Well, boys, no need to tell me your version of events any time soon," he said. "I think we'll wait until your parents arrive so I won't have to hear the same story twice."

"You called our parents?" Tai croaked.

"Two of the school's prominent youths, both role-models for the younger grades, suddenly gang up on and assault their fellow classmate, and you think this shall go unpunished? I thought it best that your unfortunate parents see up close and personal the kind of brutish hooligans that their children are becoming."

"When you say 'called our parents' do you by any chance mean—" Matt asked in dread.

"Yes, Mr. Ishida, I called both your parents," the principal stated with relish. "As in both sets of parents."

And with that, the principal re-donned his glasses, drunk in the wonderful sight of both his two students horrified expressions, then turned on his heel and fairly waltzed his way back into his office, closing the door behind him and leaving them to face their doomed fates outside alone.

"Mom's coming here," Matt whispered gulping in fear. "And Dad. And they'll be in the same room together for who knows how long. Oh God, I'm so dead."

Tai nodded, sharing his fear, and did the only thing he could think of to comfort his distraught friend at that moment.

"It's the end of the world as we know it," he sang softly, strumming the remaining strings on the guitar. "Matt's gone too far this time, yeah, he's blown it."

Matt choked down something in his throat that was part hysterical sob, part laughter and took out his harmonica that Gabumon had recently given back to him, and raised it to his puffed lips.

"Hey, Tai?"

"Yeah, Matt?"

"I'd hide your soccer gear next time I come around if I were you."

"You're the best friend any guy could have," Tai sniffled, wiping away an imaginary tear before continuing his awful caterwaul.

Matt began to blow a mournful tune in accompaniment to Tai's terrible, off-key farewell salute and together the two instruments sounded eerily reminiscent of playing one's own funeral march.

The End

A/N: Fans of Reboot, please don't kill me. I'm working on it, I swear. The next chapter just might not come out until next week, and I wanted to give you all something to read in the meantime. And since I have finally gotten Tai and Matt somewhat reconciled in that fic, I am now able to write funny friendship fics with them again, yay!

Tai's friendship song is a parody on "Copacabana"by Barry Manilow. It's sung to that tune if you want to listen to it, though I prefer another parody version to that song called "Star Wars Cantina". It's funny!^^

This whole fic sprung from me imagining Matt and Tai stuck somewhere unable to leave and Tai stealing Matt's guitar and serenading him. XD I'm glad it turned out better than humor though. It's a real friendship fic and I hope everyone enjoyed it! I'd love some reviews to see what you liked best about it. Thank you!