This is a story that I decided to write, mainly because Rika and Renamon are the most awesome pair of partners ever, and Digimon Tamers is my favorite season of Digimon. I have no idea why it's rated T. I'm just being super cautious. This will mostly be about Rika as she stumbles into a stray portal to the digital world, and how she and Renamon, who jumped in after her, try to make it back. Naturally, I'll also write about the other end of the spectrum, and how the other Tamers react to learning of Rika's disappearance and trying to figure out what happened to her. I'm almost positive there will be some Ryuki (Ryo/Rika), as I do support that pairing, but it will most likely happen in later chapters, as I think I'll figure out some way to send Ryo and Cyberdramon into the digital world as well. Oh, and during Rika's time in the digital world, she might just hear a rumor of a familiar face and do her best to track down said familiar face, for obvious reasons once their identity is revealed. Now, the beginning of the story will take place about half an hour after the end of Runaway Locomon, as I've always wanted to wrap that day up, and see how it ends. Don't bet on me bringing back her dad (he's alive and divorced, like in the English version, not dead as in the Japanese), though, as I don't particularly like him for simply leaving Rika and her mother, Rumiko. And, I'm going to stick with the English ages, meaning that Rika will have turned thirteen in the movie, instead of eleven, as she and the others just look like older characters. Also, I'm thinking that I will have Alice enter the story a little before Rika leaves to the digital world, as I'd like to have her there, as a potential new friend to the Tamers, mainly because they never really got to thank her, and Rika thought about her afterwards as shown in the show. One more thing: I will be writing digimon in lower case like we would with animals and such, instead of capitalized.

I'll do my best to keep all of the characters in character, and I will be using the English names, as that's what I'm used to, so Li Jenyra will be Henry Wong, Makino Ruki will be Rika Nonaka (if you hadn't already figured that out), Shiota Hirokazu is Kazu Shioda, Li Shiuchon is Suzie Wong, Katou Juri is Jeri Katou, and Ai and Makoto are Ai and Mako. That was all probably unnecessary to put, but hey. Whatever. On to the story!

Oh, and the disclaimer. I have not, nor have I ever owned any part of the Digimon franchise, and this is simply a fanfiction story. Seriously, would I be writing fanfiction if I owned Digimon?

And kudos to you if you actually read through all of that rambling. Here's the story now, I promise.

Chapter 1

You promised me we'd stay for the sunset… The echoing words of a song she'd sung earlier that day reverberated in Rika's head. Her thoughts were of her father, but for once they weren't angry, sad, or confused. Simply thoughtful, as thoughts tend to be.

The redhead, with her tough, tomboyish attitude would probably always resent her father for leaving like he did, without a note, goodbye, or even a reason for his departure. And she would probably always be sad, for though she'd managed to visit him a couple of times when she was little, he'd moved once more, without saying later where he was. Rika definitely didn't forgive him, and she refused to forget his memory, but tonight, the eve of her thirteenth birthday, she sat, staring at the sunset and reminiscing about the time when he was still there.

"It's your father, isn't it?" Rika turned around and looked up to find her grandmother standing behind her. Typical. There's no way it could have been Rumiko-her mother could be such an airhead sometimes, but she was a model. Still, she'd changed since Rika had left for the digital world, and Rika had realized since then that her mother truly cared for. At least more than clothes, which said a lot.

Rika turned her head back to the setting sun. Finally, she breathed a quiet 'yeah'.

"He loved you."

Rika snorted. "If he loved me so much, why did he leave? He never gave a reason, and it wasn't long before he truly disappeared, without any of us knowing where he went."

Her grandmother sighed. "I wish I knew that as much as you," she said. "Rumiko was hurt, too, though she'd never let it show. She's kind of like you in that respect."

Her granddaughter smiled slightly. "True. Mom can be a little scatterbrained, but she's tough…when she wants to be."

Seiko patted Rika's shoulder. "I understand you want to be alone now, but today is your birthday, and you have many caring friends waiting inside who want to celebrate it with you."

"Humph."

"You don't have to sing karaoke, you know." Her grandmother commented, getting a small grin from Rika. "Just come inside when you feel up to it." Seiko turned and walked back inside the house.

Sighing, Rika looked up at the sky. The sun had just about set, with a few scarlet streaks reaching out into the developing blackness of the night. Slowly, Rika got to her feet and walked to the door. She stood in front of it, looking inside at the party. Kazu was still talking with Ryo, who seemed as if he really wanted to get out of there. Kenta was plugging his ears, and Marineangemon was trying, due to Rumiko's horrible singing. I can't believe Mom's still at it. Rika thought as a small laugh escaped her mouth. Guilmon was chasing Impmon around, who was grinning and teasing Guilmon with stolen pieces of cake. Suzie was hugging Lopmon tightly in her lap, who in turn was struggling against Suzie's stranglehold. Henry was fighting to pull a sugar-buzzed Terriermon away from the table so he wouldn't scarf down all of the cake. "Save some for Rika!" He shouted at his partner, to no avail. "Rika shmika, I want more sugar!" Henry yanked Terriermon backwards, landing in a heap on the floor. "That does it, no more sugar, ever!" He said, holding Terriermon in a steely grip similar to Suzie's as his digimon struggled fiercely. Cyberdramon stood in a corner, arms crossed and foot tapping impatiently. Is he seriously standing guard? Rika wondered. Seiko was in the kitchen, preparing some more food and cleaning used dishes, and Jeri had wandered in to help her. Guardromon was hovering nervously behind Kazu as his partner continuously chatted to Ryo, and Calumon was Calumon, flitting around here and there, and always wanting to play. And to Rika's surprise, she saw Takato leaning against the wall, looking worried and talking with Renamon, who seemed as calm as ever.

As quietly as she could, Rika slid open the door and walked in. Gently, she pulled the door shut again and went through the kitchen past the occupied Seiko and Jeri to the opposite side of the room where Takato and Renamon stood. Takato smiled as he saw her. "Hey Rika! I was getting kinda worried, you know, because this is your birthday and I don't want you to be unhappy and all so I was going to go out and talk to you but Renamon called me over so I'm guessing you just wanted to be left alone and-" Takato halted as he saw Rika's raised eyebrows. "I'll stop now," he said quickly, to Rika's amusement.

Renamon spoke this time. "Have you settled your thoughts?"

"Yeah," Rika said, and smiled. "How do you do that?"

Renamon tilted her head. "Do what?"

"Read my mind."

The yellow fox chuckled. "You are my partner, Rika. I'm sure you know me just as well." Rika nodded, pleased at the compliment.

"Well," Takato began, "I know my partner too, and I have a feeling that Guilmon's going to destroy your house if he keeps chasing Impmon around. Either that or he'll collapse, he looks so tired." Takato lunged forward and grabbed Impon.

"Hey, watchit bub, whataya think you're doin'? Let me go, I say, nothin' wrong with havin' a little fun, is there? It's not like Pineapple Head cares, right my little red-skinned friend?" Impmon asked Guilmon, who, panting, had run up to join them.

"Takatoooo!" Guilmon whined. "I just wanted to eat cake, but Impmon stole all of my cake and now he won't let me have any!"

Impmon laughed. "If you weren't so slow, you could have some!"

"See Takato? Impmon's a big meanie." Guilmon pouted and looked up at Takato for help.

His tamer looked at Impmon. "Impmon…."

"Oh all right, sheesh, you people don't cut me a break, do ya? Here ya go, some cake for the poor sucker!" The purple digimon held out his gloved hand, a piece of cake in it, to Guilmon.

"Oo, yummy!" Guilmon said, and reached out his claw to take the piece of cake. Right before he could grab it, Impmon snatched away his hand and shoved the cake in his mouth. "Mmf, scrmff, hahaha, thish cake ish delishussh! (Chewing noises, laughter, this cake is delicious!)"

"No fair no fair no fair!" Guilmon whined and looked at Takato. "Will you get me some cake, Takato?"

Takato laughed. "Sure, pal!" Together the two walked to the table.

"Whaff? Ya leaffin' a'eady? Sheesh, wha a coupla boshos! (What? You're leaving already? Sheesh, what a couple of bozos!)" Impmon cried out, then waved his hand in dismissal. "Ah, who needs 'em?"

Rika stood with Renamon, a small grin on her face at Guilmon's and Impmon's antics. "Those two…" she said, and Renamon smiled as well.

"Always full of life, aren't they?"

"Always," Rika agreed. She looked over to Kazu and Ryo, whose face looked a little pained. "You know, I think I feel a little sorry for him."

"No," Renamon said jokingly, "the Ice Queen has feelings?"

"Haha, very funny, Renamon. I didn't know you had such a charming sense of humor."

"You do not appreciate it?"

Rika rolled her eyes. "Sure I do."

Renamon chuckled again, then changed the subject. "Are you going to get any cake?"

"I'd prefer to stay hidden for the moment." Rika said. Unfortunately, that was to be short-lived.

Kazu was still lecturing Ryo. "You see, man, being a tamer is hardly an easy task. And sure, you're famous, so what? Living the high life and signing autographs is easy work, man, you gotta get down in the trenches! Oh wait, I said that already, didn't I? Anyways, it's not just about the cards, 'cause you got that down alright, Mr. Digimon Champion, but have you got the heart and the courage? Well, of course you do, you're the coolest ever Ryo Akiyama, man, but you still can't compare to me and Guardromon, right buddy?"

"Right!" Guardromon responded.

"'Cause, you know, we're the most awesome team! Now, you and Cyberdramon really gotta work on your partnership, dude! 'Cause, like, you're not on the same wavelength at all, man! You gotta really connect, like me and Guardromon, right buddy?"

"Right!"

"You gotta really get closer, you know? He seemed like a good dude when he was Monodramon, but when he's Cyberdramon he's one mean puppy, you know what I mean? You can't use that whip of yours, you gotta build up a solid partnership like mine and Guardromon's, right buddy?"

"Right!"

"Connection, man, it's all about connection! You see-" Kazu continued rambling while Ryo listened on wearily. Looking up, he glimpsed Rika standing in the far corner, and his eyes widened. "Dude, are you even paying attention?" Kazu asked angrily.

"Of course I am. I just got a little distracted when I noticed that Rika had returned." Ryo said smoothly.

"What, Rika's back in? Oh, hey Rika! Glad you decided to join us!" Kazu yelled, and Ryo winced, realizing he'd probably made a grave mistake in telling Kazu Rika was back.

"Oh great, leave it to Kazu," Rika muttered under her breath as everyone in the room turned to look at her.

Jeri popped her head out of the kitchen. "Oh, Rika, you're back! Do you want some cake? We saved some for you!" She ducked her head back in and came out carrying a large piece of cake. "Happy birthday, Rika!" She congratulated her.

Rika smiled. Leave it to Jeri. "Thanks." She murmured, and took the cake from Jeri. Glaring, she looked around the room. "Well? What's with the staring?"

"Oh sorry!" "Woops!" "Not paying attention, not paying attention." "Eat your cake, we don't care, whatever." "Sorry!"

Rumiko grabbed the microphone, as she had stopped singing when her daughter had been pointed out. "I guess I'll start another song!" She said gleefully.

"NO!" Everyone chorused.

Rumiko looked hurt. "Even you, Mama?" She asked Seiko, who grinned.

"You may look good, daughter, but that doesn't do anything to your horrible singing voice." Even Rika laughed at that.

Pouting, Rumiko left the stage, and Kenta finally unplugged his ears. "So? Who's next?" He looked around the room.

"Well, we know Rika's out," Kazu began, "so who's left? C'mon, anyone wanna go?" The room was so quiet you could hear a pin drop.

Ryo cleared his throat nervously, and everyone turned to stare at him. "Um, thing is…" He hesitated, and Kazu clapped him on the back.

"Spit it out, man!"

Ryo began again. "Well, the thing is, I'm kind of curious to hear Rika sing." Before she could retort, he added, holding his hands out in front of him defensively, "But only if she wants to! I'm just kind of curious, that's all, when Kazu said Takato had told him she sings like a bird. So, what do you say, Rika?"

"Not on your life, Akiyama," Rika snapped, and folded her arms across her chest.

Jeri looked at Rika pleadingly. "Please, Rika? I know you don't want to, but it wouldn't be embarrassing. We've all heard you have an incredible voice, and we're dying to hear it."

"Sorry Jeri, but no," Rika responded shaking her head. "No way."

Then, Kazu did something completely unexpected. He stood up, dropping his arrogant attitude, and asked her nicely, "Rika, we would all love to hear your voice. You may hate singing, but from what we've heard from Takato and Renamon, well, mostly Takato, you sing amazingly, and we're all super curious to hear it."

Everyone stared at Kazu, and Rika pointed at him, a confused look on her face. "Was his brain rewired just now?" All of the other people in the room seemed just as confused.

"What?" Kazu asked, getting a little annoyed. "Yeah, I can act polite when I wanna, I just don't wanna all the time, okay?" He sat back down, grumbling to himself.

Calumon flew over to Rika while the rest were distracted, talking amongst themselves now about Kazu. "Please, Rika?" Calumon asked, eyes wide. "I really wanna hear you sing. I promise I won't ask you to play if you don't want to anymore, okay?" Rika stayed silent. "Oh," Calumon said, and began to fly away, disappointed, not seeing Rika gently bend over to place her cake on the table.

Closing her eyes, Rika began to tap her foot. Calumon landed on the floor and spun around to stare up at Rika. Taking a deep breath, Rika opened her mouth and began to sing.

"Promise that we'll stay for the sunset,

And when the moon shines through the darkness,

We can find the path that leads us home,

And on the way you'll…maybe…sing me a song.

By now, the room had become dead silent once more, so quiet to the point where Rika's soft voice rang clearly through the space. Everyone hung on her every word, even Takato and Renamon, who'd heard it once before.

Promise that you always will be there,

Hold my hand, if ever I'm real scared.

Help me stand up tall if I fall down,

Make me laugh away on my bluest days.

How could you promise you always would be there?

Why'd you have to go away somewhere?

Every morning into every night,

Do you watch over me, like the sun in the sky?

Am I all alone, or standing in your light?

I wish that I could…maybe…sing you a song…tonight…

You promised me we'd stay for the sunset…

As the last chords of Rika's song finished, she closed her mouth and stilled her tapping foot, lost in memories once more. She didn't open her eyes as everyone burst out clapping, with many cheering for her and Kazu even giving a whistle.

"That was brilliant, Rika!" Jeri praised, and Ryo murmured quietly, "So she really can sing."

"Awesome, Rika, awesome!" Kazu shouted, with Guardromon imitating him. "Awesome, Rika, awesome!" Kazu turned to him. "That's what I said!" His partner shook his head. "No, I said it." Kazu argued. "I said it first, you big copycat!"

"Did not!"

"Did too!"

"Did not!"

"So did too!"

As they began to argue the clapping and praise slowly died down. Rika opened her eyes reached out to grab her cake and fork, and dug in, savoring the strawberry flavoring and buttercream frosting. Swallowing, Rika set her plate down once more and walked over to the TV. Grabbing a DVD off the shelf, she waved it up high, hoping to distract them from her singing. "Who wants to watch Digimon Adventure?" She asked.

Her ploy worked. All tamers and digimon suddenly focused on the disk Rika was holding. "We do, we do!" They shouted, the digimon loudest of all, having never seen the TV show. Laughing, Rika took out the DVD and started the first episode, and soon all attentions were absorbed with the story of the Digidestined as they first fell into the digital world.

Rika returned to her cake and began to eat it once more. "Brilliant distraction," Renamon commented.

"We're all digimon fanatics here, so I figured it'd be the easiest way to take away their attentions. Mmmm, this cake is delicious! Grandma really outdid herself!"

Renamon glanced at her tamer. "Something confuses me. Why did you sing?"

Rika chewed thoughtfully for a while, listening to the TV.

"Oh, by the way, my name's Tai. This is Sora. She's okay, for a girl. And Matt, Matt's too cool. Just look at that haircut! And this little kid is Izzy. He should've gone to computer camp. That's Mimi. I'll bet you can guess her favorite color on the first try! T.K. is Matt's dopey little brother. Oh, and this is Joe, but don't ever scare him, he'd probably wet his pants. There we all were at camp, when suddenly this huge blizzard came out of nowhere!"

The TV continued to play the first episode of Digimon Adventure in the background, when Rika finally answered, shrugging. "I don't know. Maybe because Jeri really wanted to hear it? Because Kazu actually dropped his 'I'm the coolest ever' act? Probably because of Calumon, though. I do owe him my life, from that time he saved from drowning in the digital world."

"Not because of Ryo?"

Rika gagged on her piece of cake, causing Renamon to panic a little. Gasping, Rika swallowed the piece, and took a deep breath. "No way! I could care less what Akiyama wants!"

"Of course." Renamon agreed, but you could tell by the twinkle in her eyes that she did not quite believe her partner.

"C'mon." Rika said gruffly. "Let's watch the show. You haven't seen it either."

"No, I have not. Let us watch, then."

Grabbing a glass of milk off the table, Rika joined her friends seated on the floor in front of the TV and continued to savor her birthday cake.

"No no no, I don't want to leave, Takato!"

"You…have…to…" Panting, Takato tugged on Guilmon harder as he clung to the doorframe of Rika's house.

"Nooooo!" Guilmon wailed. "Biyomon just digivolved! I wanna see the others digivolve! And what are those black gear things? I wanna know I wanna know! Please Takato, please!"

"No, Guilmon, it's almost midnight, we have to leave! This isn't even our house! Listen boy, I've got the DVDs at home too, we can watch them there, okay?"

Grinning, Guilmon let go of the door frame as his attitude took a one-eighty. "Okay!" He said happily, and left, a bemused Takato following him after thanking the Nonakas one last time.

"Henry, you better have those DVDs at our home, too, 'cause I want to know as much as Guilmon! And when is Tentomon going to digivolve? 'Cause Izzy deserves a super strong partner!" Terriermon was chattering to Henry as he rode on his shoulder.

"Momentai, Terriermon, I've got 'em at home. You like Izzy?" Henry asked.

"Perfect! And you better believe it! Izzy is by far the awesomest of the team! Super-smart-kid for the win!" Terriermon shouted.

"The sugar hasn't worn off yet, has it?" Henry questioned, sighing.

"Nope!"

Suzie and Lopmon followed behind them. "Suzie, can you tell me what happens?" Lopmon asked her tamer.

Suzie grinned evilly. "Sowwy Lopmon, I can't tell you! You awe supposed to watch! I don't wanna spoil any secwets fow you!"

Sighing, Lopmon padded beside Suzie. "But I really want to know." She murmured, causing Suzie to grin more evilly.

"You'we gonna have to wait!" She declared, and that was that.

Kazu, Kenta, Guardromon and Marineangemon left together. "Awesome party, Rika!" Kazu said, and waved goodbye. "Thanks for the food, Ms. Nonaka." Kenta said, and bowed, with Marineangemon mimicking him, and left. "Thank you!" Both Rumiko and Seiko said at the same time and looked at each other.

"He probably meant you." Rumiko said, while Seiko said simultaneously, "He probably meant me." They both paused, and laughed.

"Thanks for all the food and the great time." Jeri said, and bowed before leaving.

Calumon flew out the door, calling over his shoulder, "That was fun! Let's play again sometime, okay?"
"Sure, Calumon." Rika replied as he flew off.

Ryo and Cyberdramon were next. "I know you don't like me very much, but I had a good time, and I hope you did too." As he walked off, he waved back at her, "And your singing was brilliant!"

"Stupid perfect-"

"Rika." Her grandmother reprimanded her.

"Sorry." She muttered.

"Well, that should be everyone, right?" Rumiko asked, looking around.

"Ahem." Impmon cleared his throat below them.

"What do you want, Impmon?" Renamon asked.

"Well, um, I was wonderin', see, if…" Impmon scuffed his foot on the floor.

"Go on, Impmon, it's all right." Rika encouraged him.

"Well, uh, ya see, Ai and Mako don't have the Digimon seasons, so I was wonderin' if, ya know, maybe sometime we could come over, or somethin', and watch a few episodes, 'cause I thought it was pretty good and all, and I'm sure Ai and Mako would like it, seein' as they're tamers too, and I'm a little curious to see what else happens to the Digidestined, sooo…." Impmon trailed off and stared at the floor.

"Of course, Impmon," Rika said, and he looked at her incredulously.

"Really? Ya mean it?"

Rika smiled. "Sure. Just call ahead of time if you want to come over."

"Thanks, Rika!" Impmon grinned, and ran off.

"I wonder why we both have such a soft spot for him." Renamon mused.

"Dunno." Rika replied. "Anyways, let's go in." Rika headed back into the house, followed by Seiko and Rumiko.

"Aren't you going to open your presents yet?" Rumiko asked.

Rika shook her head. "I'll save them for tomorrow. Something to look forward to when I wake up." Yawning, Rika padded into her bedroom to get ready for bed. Renamon followed closely behind, and as the minutes passed and the moon drifted across the sky, the clock hit midnight to signal the start of Rika's first full day as a thirteen-year-old.

So…love it? Hate it? Sort of like it? Sort of despise it? Wanna read more? Wanna smash your computer it's so awful? Huh? Huh? (Basically I'm asking you to review.) Feedback, people!

Oh, and no offense to models. Rika's thoughts, not mine.

By the way, did anyone catch the joke with Terriermon's favorite character? If you did, good for you, but I'm going to explain it anyways. Mona Marshall, the voice actor of Terriermon, also voiced Izzy Izumi in the first Digimon season. Hence Terriermon's favorite character. ;D

And sorry if it's starting off a little slow, but I kind of got carried away. Believe me, there will be action once Rika and Renamon enter the digital world.

One last thing: if anyone spots any typos, feel free to point them out so I can correct them. Thanks for reading! I'll try to update as fast as I can!