Story #1: Taiki +1

Eighteen year old Kudou Taiki walked briskly through the streets of his hometown, his mind abuzz. After all, it wasn't every day that your best friend called and told you that he was going to be getting married. Of course, his friendship was a bit different to most since his best friend was a digital being from another world.

His relationship with Shoutmon had started off rockily at first, but over time, they had come to respect each other greatly. After the battles for both worlds against Baguramon and Quartzmon, the two had been forced to separate, however, after a short time, the two worlds began to converge once more and the two renewed their friendship outside of battle.

Still, it came as an enormous surprise to Taiki when Shoutmon requested his presence at his home in the Village of Smiles in the Green Zone. After their victory against Baguramon, the Code Crown had reconfigured the Digital World to its default parameters, and thus, the Zones were restored. His visits to the Digimon World had been less frequent than his friends Amano Yuu and Akashi Tagiru, but the fact that he was requested by the King of the Digital World was still a great honour, friendship or no.

So, he had used his Xros Loader to transport himself between the barrier dividing the two worlds and had headed straight for the Village of Smiles. Being greeted by his old friends was always a rare treat for him, but to see Shoutmon with a beaming smile was the greatest reward he could ask for.

They had walked through the village, meeting old friends like Jijimon (who miraculously had trimmed his beard) and Lillymon (whose blushing cheeks alerted Taiki to the fact that he had gained something of a status as a saviour, a title he didn't want). They took a stroll to the outskirts of the village and climbed until they reached the cliff that Taiki had first seen the Village of Smiles from (Shoutmon had hung him perilously over the edge while Taiki screamed for his life).

Shoutmon had then got to the heart of the matter. "There's something I want to ask you." The way he said the words made Taiki instantly feel on edge. Perhaps Quartzmon had been revived and he needed Taiki's help. "It's...kind of difficult to explain..."

"Shoutmon," began Taiki, his eyes radiating concern. "No matter what you're facing, just know that I will always be there for you."

"Thank you, Taiki. That means a lot to me."

Taiki smiled, then his face grew serious. "So, what is the threat?"

"...What are you talking about?" asked Shoutmon, his confusion clear.

"...What are you talking about?" countered Taiki.

"I'm getting married!" replied Shoutmon, his excitement written on his face. His smile was wide and large and his eyes glittered.

"...Really?" said Taiki dumbly.

"Is that all you have to say?" retorted Shoutmon.

"No...I just...Wow! That's amazing, Shoutmon! I can't believe it."

"I know. Even now, I'm still amazed she actually said yes."

Taiki couldn't resist taking a dig at Shoutmon's expense. "I can't believe you found someone who'll put up with you."

Shoutmon beamed. "I know, right?" Taiki just shrugged his shoulders. It was clear that the mood Shoutmon was in was going to allow him to bounce any and all insults away. "Anyway, the reason I called you here is because I have a question to ask. Will you be my best man?"

Shoutmon's eyes were wide and pleading. Taiki stuttered as he thought it through. Finally, he swallowed the dry lump out of his throat. "I would be honoured, Your Majesty."

"Please, Taiki. There's no need for formality between us. You know that...And thank you. Oh, don't forget. You can bring someone with you, but only one person, okay?"

That was what had led to Taiki returning home and blitzing his way through town. His mind was whirling with questions and no answers were forthcoming. Shoutmon's words echoed in his mind. Bring someone with you, but only one person...

Who should I take with me? he pondered. I bet that everybody would like to go.

Yuu and Damemon are welcome anytime; the same applies to Tagiru and Gumdramon, so I don't think I have to agonise over them. After our battle with Quartzmon, they were all recognised as heroes and given access no matter the situation. They only have that right because of their status as Hunters. For everyone else, though, things are a bit more tricky.

Nene would like to go, definitely. It would be an opportunity for her to showcase her talents as an idol, and I'm sure that Shoutmon would love to have her sing at the reception. I'm certain that Mervamon and Beelzebumon would enjoy some alone time as well, he thought snidely.

Kiriha would enjoy spending time with Deckerdramon. I'm sure they would have plenty to discuss, and Shoutmon would enjoy some banter with Greymon on his wedding day.

Zenjirou would love to go for the food. But more than that, he is a part of Xros Heart, and he helped Shoutmon to become Digimon King. Their bond is strong.

"Only one person..." whispered Taiki to himself. This decision was difficult...

Finally, he reached the door he had been racing to all along. Knocking, he heard a female voice call out.

"Just a minute." Taiki waited anxiously outside, fidgeting on the spot. With little aplomb, the door creaked open and a young woman poked her head out. "Taiki?" she asked, looking at him with wide, excited eyes.

"Hey, Akari. It's been a while. How have–" His words were stopped when he yelped due to Akari jumping on him, wrapping her arms around him in a tight hug, laughing as she did.

Taiki released the breath of nervousness he'd been holding. He couldn't understand why he felt nervous though. This was Akari, his best friend since they were children. Sure, it had been a few months since he'd seen her last. With her going to a different town to continue her studying, they ended up being apart throughout the school term, but even so...why did he feel so strange around her? Like she was a different person...Or that he was seeing her differently...

Still, all that thinking was besides the point. He wrapped his arms around her back and squeezed, letting her know that he had missed her just as much as she had him. Pulling back, he kissed her forehead. Although they didn't notice, both of them closed their eyes at the contact.

"Gosh, it's been so long," smiled Akari. Their hug ended, they slid out of each other's arms but maintained a close proximity. "It feels like forever since I last saw you."

Taiki smiled at her. He felt the same way, but he couldn't resist teasing her a little. "Come on, Akari. You make it sound like we haven't seen each other in years."

Akari smirked. "Says the one who couldn't resist chasing me down the very first day I come back home."

"I...well...I was just..." Taiki became flustered, rubbing his head sheepishly while Akari's smirk became more pronounced.

"Hmm?"

"Okay, I missed you as well. Happy?"

"There now," cooed Akari. "Was that so difficult?"

Taiki flushed beet-red. Akari had known he was teasing, but she couldn't help but tease back. What she hadn't expected was quite as dynamic a reaction from her normally stoic friend. It was an exciting new revelation to her, one which she intended to explore further.

"Anyway," began Taiki, swallowing past his embarrassment. "I wanted to ask you something."

"What is it?" Akari winked, making Taiki gulp, though he didn't know exactly why. Inwardly, Akari was giggling at Taiki's responses to her 'gentle' prodding. For some reason, she found his dumbfounded expressions to be far too cute. Of course, she would never say that out loud. At least, not until she was certain...

"Well, actually, I suppose I should start at the beginning," continued Taiki, feeling seriously flustered. Akari simply batted her eyelashes at him and he was a jabbering mess. "Umm, well, the thing is...Shoutmon is getting married..."

"Oh my gosh!" exclaimed Akari who clapped her hands together with delight. "Who? Where? When? How?" She bombarded Taiki with rapid-fire questions.

"One at a time!" laughed Taiki, glad that he was finally acting normally around her. Whatever that random phase was, he was glad it was that: random. So, he began the lengthy process of explaining the hows and the whys. By the time he was finished both of them had gentle smiles on their faces.

"Oh Taiki, that's so romantic," she cooed, her smile radiant, her cheeks flushed.

She looks so cute when she smiles like that... thought Taiki carelessly, alarmed by how easily the thought had planted itself in his mind. At all costs, he had to remove the thought. He couldn't be thinking of his best friend in a less than platonic manner. It simply wasn't right. It wasn't done. It would ruin their friendship, and her friendship was one of his most valued treasures.

"So...Akari...I was wondering if..."

"Yes...Taiki..."

"...If you would...come...with me...to Shoutmon's wedding," he finished, feeling ridiculously self-conscious.

By the way Akari's eyebrows arched and her eyes narrowed, Taiki felt sure she was going to refuse. He steeled himself for the inevitable–

"I'd love to."

"Huh?" Taiki was sure he misheard, so he ended sprouting perhaps the most inane word imaginable, considering the circumstances and who it was he was speaking to.

"I said I'd love to," repeated Akari, smiling widely.

Taiki felt himself smile back, an involuntary, knee-jerk reaction, but one he would have done if he had conscious control as well.

"That's...great...honestly!" Taiki babbled, trying to string words together to express the way he felt. Akari just smiled softly at his attempts.

Same old Taiki.

And thus, the day of Shoutmon's wedding arrived.

oOo

A/N: To help bulk out the number of stories for Xros Wars, myself and ShoutToTheStars have started a series of short stories where you give us a prompt and we try to come up with an entertaining story for you. Therefore, this story is all about interaction. So, give us a review and/or PM about it, and give us a prompt.

The prompt for this first story was - as you can probably guess - Taiki is invited to Shoutmon's wedding and he has to choose a guest.

Please, get in touch.