Disclaimer: I do not own Digimon
Summary: It's not a fear of flying, but a fear of falling.
"I don't know about this Kari," Yuuko said, eyeballing the stately form of Nefertimon crouched demurely beside her beaming daughter with no small amount of unease.
Kari laughed. "Come on Mom, it's perfectly safe, Nefertimon won't let anything happen to us, right, Nefertimon?" she asked the sphinx. Nefertimon nodded solemnly.
"On my honour as a feline I vow that nothing will happen to you or Kari while you are in my care," she vowed, and Yuuko had to believe her. But her fears were irrational, and all the assurances in the world wouldn't make a dent in the trepidation that had beset her from the moment her youngest had proposed this excusion.
She frowned. "I believe you but I'm afraid of flying, in a plane or on a Digimon," she stressed, seeing that Kari was about to refute her argument. The girl sighed.
"I used to be afraid of flying too when I was younger, remember?" she asked.
Yuuko cast her mind back. Kari had indeed had a fear of flying, and had screamed her little lungs out when she had been taken on a plane at the tender age of five, but nothing like the terror that gripped Yuuko, rendering her unable to even go on the rides at the carnival. It was an all encompassing dread of being more than three feet off the ground, and she firmly believed that she was too old to change now.
"You were a cranky kid on that flight Kari, you've never had a problem since," she replied.
But Kari wasn't giving up so easily. "You were a kid when you developed the fear though."
"I don't know where it came from, I just don't like flying. I like my feet on the ground, where they belong," she enunciated, growing annoyed with Kari's persistence. She was not going up into the air, no matter how tempting the case for it might be.
"Have you ever thought that perhaps you are not afraid of flying, but of falling?" Nefertimon suggested calmly, and Yuuko considered that she might be right. Even on the ground she watched her step, she rarely stumbled, and hadn't fallen in years.
She remembered tumbling out of a tree and breaking her wrist when she was very
"You may be right. Maybe I'm just afraid of what will happen when I hit the ground," she said plaintively. Kari beamed.
"Which won't be happening today. So, will you try?" she pleaded. Yuuko frowned, not altogether pleased with the way in which she was being coerced, but wanting to take part in something that Kari only did with her partner. That had been the aim in spending more time with her daughter, trying to find things in common with her, and have a more active role in her life. She knew she wasn't the most observant person, it had taken her years to figure out that her family hated her cooking, and that her potted plants were dying because of the liversticks the kids hid in them, and she wanted to learn about what she had been blind to before.
"Okay, I'll do it," she declared, mouth set in a grim line.
Kari cheered. "Okay, jump on behind me and hold on tight," she instructed. Yuuko nervously complied.
"I won't let either of you fall," Nefertimon reiterated.
"Thank you," Yuuko whispered. Nefertimon flicked her tail in answer.
"Ready kaasan?" Kari asked, eyes alight with such infectious excitement that she had to smile.
"I'm ready," she murmured, and promptly buried her head in Kari's shoulder, causing her daughter to cast her eyes upwards in despair. Nevertheless, Yuuko couldn't resist sneaking a peek from the corner of her eye at the rapidly shrinking landscape as they climbed higher.
"Are you okay?" Kari asked, and Yuuko was surprised to find herself nodding gingerly. And it was true. This wasn't so bad, not when Kari was smiling so widely and the breeze was whipping pleasantly about her and she could see everything around her for miles laid out like the ultimate postcard.
And even if she did fall, she knew they would catch her.