Me: Okay, people-I've kept you all at bay long enough. Here it is-the final chapter in the saga eloquently titled "A Rukato Wedding!" I don't own Digimon, nor do I own "Across the Tears," "Promise of the Setting Sun"-both of which lyrics are found on www.animelyrics.com-and one part of "My Sacrifice" by Creed. The chorus fits this particular chapter for one good reason.
Rika: (turns away in a huff) Don't remind me-you're planning on taking away my Gogglehead!
Me: Momentai already! Why does everyone assume that I'm gonna take Takato away from her?
BlackTerriermon: Let's see-'cause you put him in an intense life-or-death situation against someone who can be considered her mortal enemy-next to Ryo-and, now that he used all his power to destroy the aforementioned enemy-not Ryo, sadly enough-he is in danger of being deleted.
Me: (slaps forehead; groans) I didn't ask for your opinion on this matter! Anyway, those of you who know the way I write stories know that I rarely enjoy sad endings and would much prefer happier ones. In Frozen Phoenix's case, she would be considered an angst-type of writer. Flamegaruru, on the other hand, would be what I consider a mix between the two-she writes stories with happy endings and, with a certain Rukato story she has up now-"Wings on Shadows"-hope I got that title right!-that story won't have a happy ending, as she has pointed out to us.
Rika: (struggles to hide tears) Anything else you want to ramble on about?
Me: (narrows eyes) Don't get snippy with me, or I will actually consider going the opposite way with this story! (Rika turns away, clearly agitated) Now, before I continue, I would like to thank pretty much everyone who reviewed and gave me support throughout this story-if I don't mention your name, trust me-I'm not leaving you out of this: ML of Gryffindor, max acorn, Frozen Phoenix, Flamegaruru, LanHikari, Tamer of Courage, Knight of Light, Daneel Rush, Hirokono, Jessantu16, Angel-Chan-don't worry, you will be in this chapter!-The Digimon Queen-who this story is dedicated to, matter-of-fact, so I wouldn't try to end it on a sad note-The Future Queen, Epyon-Zero, Rukato Fan-I think this particular author is one of my anonymous reviewers, though-Steeldramon21-who, as far as I can tell, is still on vacation-Charles Xavier, Aerisakura & Smashfriends, Lonewalker, AnT, Krocket, Quantum Ranger, Exoduss, Anthony, Night Sky, Love Star, Jade Star, Digikittyo123, Epsilon, SerpentTreize, Imperialdramon: Paladin Mode, Forever Zero, Luvya, a host of other authors whose names I can't remember at this time-but I still thank you for your support-and, of course, my muses as well as my beloved partner in crime-just joking-BlackTerriermon!
Rika: (tiny smile appears on her face) Finally-you get something done right.
Takato: (enters in) Hey, guys! What have I missed?
Rika: (overjoyed to see him alive-mainly because the chapter hasn't started yet) Takato! (hugs him tightly) You're still alive! You didn't die on me, and I won't have to kill him for it.
BlackTerriermon: That's 'cause the chapter hasn't begun yet. (laughs quietly)
Me: Are you trying to get me killed, 'cause I just thanked you for helping me out with the few parts of the story you were a part of!?
BlackTerriermon: Momentai! If worst comes to worst, I could just Digivolve to BlackGargomon and fire a few shots in the air. They wouldn't hurt her, just startle her a bit.
Me: (raises eyebrow) So you say...
Takato: (struggles to breathe) Rika...need oxygen to...live...
Rika: (blushes heavily; releases Takato, who gulps down huge amounts of air) Sorry! Got a little overzealous for a moment, but now, I'm back!
BlackTerriermon: Ya sure you don't want me to Digivolve to BlackGargomon and spook her off?
Me: Don't even start with me! For those reviewers who asked me certain questions during the last chapter-and who will probably ask me some more concerning this one, as well-give me a while, and I will personally e-mail you the responses. Well...send you an e-mail-you know what I mean!
BlackTerriermon: Wait a minute! What about your lemony Rukato?
Me: (eyes bug out, gulps loudly) That's it-no more surfing the Net while I'm not at home!
BlackTerriermon: Aw, nuts!
Me: On a more serious note, concerning my Rukato lemon, I've got a plotline for it, but what I want to know from you reviewers is this: Should I add some action to this, and have the Tamers take on another deadly foe, or should I just go with what I originally was planning on doing? Now-onward to the final chapter of "A Rukato Wedding!" Also, this chapter, like the last one, is based off of the one-hour Season Finale. Lastly, my Rukato lemon is now called "When Two become One."
BlackTerriermon: He takes things waaaaaaaay too seriously.
Rika: (smirks) And you don't take things seriously enough.
Digimon Tamers: A Rukato Wedding
Epilogue-A Wedding amidst a Tragedy
"My life isn't pointless, and neither is Guilmon's or my friends' or anyone elses'! We have a right to live and to protect the people we care about-something a warped freak like you would never understand!!" -Takato Matsuki, Such Sweet Sorrow
"But, this isn't really about fighting-it's about having the strength to do what needs to be done
to save the world!" -Rika Nonaka, The D-Reaper's Disguise
The Tamers all reunited near this spherical ball of ice for one final confrontation against the
Ice-Reaper, while Henry's father explained the situation about the silver ring he'd given Takato
earlier that day. When the team of Mega Digimon finally broke through the ball of ice, they'd
gotten ambushed by the Ice-Reaper himself! The team managed to get a few hits in, but it wasn't
enough. That's when the villain incarnate used the power of the ring and weakened Beelzemon,
HiAndromon and MegaGargomon enough to make them deDigivolve! After Takato and Guilmon
changed into Gallantmon's Crimson Mode, they went off to stop an oncoming blimp, trusting
Justimon and Sakuyamon to handle the job. Sadly, even the two of them were no match for this
Virus' fury. Then, when Gallantmon tried taking him on alone, he was blasted by a beam of ice,
and sent flying to the ground! Only with the help of a girl named Angela, and his love for Rika,
was Takato able to use the ring to change into Gallantmon: Magna Mode and successfully
defeated the Ice-Reaper! The only question is, did that victory come with a price, or what?
The Tamers watched the Ice-Reaper dissolve into bits of data that floated beyond the realms of the Real World and waited a few seconds before cheering in success! The Ice-Reaper was gone for good, and this time, he wasn't ever going to come back.
"Way to go, Chumly!" Kazu yelled out at Gallantmon as the Fusion-type Digimon landed gracefully on the ground beside the others.
"It's finally over...you did it, Takato!" Rika beamed with happiness as Gallantmon acknowledged her with a nod, knowing that justice had been served.
"Wrong...we did it, Rika, together!"
"And now you guys can get married!" Calumon added from atop Rika's head. (Rika's note: The more things change, the more they stay the same.)
"So, what are you guys waiting for? Let's get you two lovebirds to the church!" Ryo piped up. Rika narrowed her eyes in irritation at the Legendary Tamer, who simply shrugged in response.
"Yeah-that way, I can replace Calumon and become the new Ring Mon."
"Why don't you two share the role, hmm?" Renamon asked calmly. After mulling it over, the dog-rabbit Digimon nodded in agreement.
"Why didn't I think of that before?"
Henry laughed at that statement. "You are impossible to please!"
That's when it happened...Gallantmon's feet burst into bits of data, data that no one noticed until Guilmon's voice spoke out, "Takato, what's going on?"
"Guilmon, what's happening?" Takato cried worriedly as he noticed everything start to go black around his sphere, like it would if he was deDigivolving involuntarily.
"I don't know..."
"Ohhhhh...This isn't supposed to happen!" Calumon exclaimed as his ears retracted at that moment.
"Takato! Try to deDigivolve!" Henry insisted, starting to run up to his best friend, but Jeri held him back, struggling to hide her own tears.
"Why is this happening?!" Rika cried out as she, the other Tamers and the Digimon could do nothing but watch this event unfold before their very eyes. It was at that moment that Janyu finally reached their part of the park.
Henry turned around and saw his father coming toward them. A glimmer of hope was shining through. His father had gotten them through most of the rough times of their lives, most of the time when they were Tamers-he would surely help them out now!
"Dad, help us!"
"Mr. Wong, why is the ring you gave me making me and Guilmon turn into data?" Takato yelled from inside his sphere as his crimson background turned completely black, his golden sphere still intact.
That one question had completely shattered Henry's world. The blue-haired Tamer remembered Takato saying something in the Ice-Reaper's realm about "a person who used to work for Hypnos" giving him the ring, but he had no idea his father was that person!
"The ring 'you' gave Takato...?" Henry closed his eyes tightly as he fought back his tears of indignation and screamed, "Dad, tell us! What's going on with Takato?!!"
It took a while for Janyu to regain his composure as he stared at Gallantmon's rapidly vanishing form before responding. "Henry, I...when I overheard your conversation this morning concerning the Ice-Reaper, I was concerned that the world might be in jeopardy again. That's when I felt the ring that Shibumi gave to me for safekeeping, and I figured it might be the way out that was needed. It was a chance we had to take, even if it meant losing Takato and Guilmon."
"What do you mean 'lose?' Where are they going?!" Ryo asked. True, Takato and Ryo didn't think too highly of each other, but that didn't mean they wanted anything bad to happen to the other, not if either of them could help it!
"Where all discarded data goes, unless a Digimon downloads it...an endless abyss, possibly where the Ice-Reaper went to moments ago, in the Digital Plane. Your Digimon were never meant for this world, and humans weren't meant to merge with Digimon."
Takato was like the others-struggling with his tears of sadness as his body started to break up into bits of data. "But, Rika and I are supposed to be married right now! We're a part of each other! What happens to me, happens to her...I promised her I'd never leave her alone again..." Takato briefly considered adding in, "like her father had left her," but decided that would be a misplacement of Rika's trust, so he decided against it. "...I promised!"
"No...this can't be!" Rika fought to keep her tears hidden as she started shaking on the ground, her hair flowing behind her since she hadn't bothered to put it back up moments ago. Yet, despite her best efforts, some tears streamed down her cheeks. "...I won't let you go away!"
"You knew, didn't you?!" Henry hissed angrily as he hugged Terriermon tightly and felt Jeri's arms wrap around his own body at that second. "You knew this would happen when you gave Takato that stupid silver ring!"
"I had no other choice. The fate of two worlds were at stake. I couldn't let everything and everyone we loved be wiped out in the blink of an eye because some frozen Digimon wanted vengeance against Rika for something that happened a long time ago! If I had to do it all over again, Henry...I would leave it exactly the way it was!" Janyu insisted, firm that the decision he'd made was the right one.
It was at that moment that Takato felt a strange peace wash over him. Something told him that despite what was happening now, things would turn out for the better, and he had a feeling that Guilmon knew this, too.
Henry gently put his partner down and held Jeri close to him, remembering the good times he and Takato had together-the time at the camp with their Digimon-and Impmon, naturally-the time they'd teamed up to save Rika from IceDevimon in the first place, the time when he and Takato had first met following Guilmon's rampage throughout the school, and a host of other memories.
"Henry...?" Guilmon's voice spoke out from Gallantmon, so the Tamer in question, as well as Jeri and Terriermon, looked up.
"It'll be okay. As your partner says every now and again, 'Momentai.'"
"This isn't the time for 'Momentai!'" Terriermon grumbled sadly while climbing up to Henry's shoulder.
"Actually, it is." Takato responded gently. "Guilmon's right. It's gonna turn out fine."
"Takato, no...Next to Jeri and Terriermon, you're my best friend...!"
Takato couldn't help but smile at that bold statement. "And next to Rika and Guilmon...you're my best friend, too..." At that second, the lower torso of Gallantmon's body burst into bits of data.
Takato closed his eyes tightly as he heard Rika's voice call out to him, her arms held up in a pleading gesture. "Takato, stay with me! You can fight this, can't you? I never meant those words I said when I called you and Guilmon weak. When we met, I thought you two would be a suitable challenge, and, instead...you challenged me to look inside of myself, and I found out that...I can't live without you. And...you promised me you wouldn't leave me!"
Saddened, Takato cried out, "I know, Rika, and I'm sorry! But, things don't always end the way you want them to. Sometimes, though, a miracle does occur every now and then...so, just wait for me...I'll always be a part of you, even if I'm not physically by your side..."
Takato gasped as he felt his body start to break up into data, and knew that his time was cut dramatically short. Seconds after that happened, the upper torso of Gallantmon's body broke up into bits of data. Rika finally allowed her tears to show as she cried, "No, Takato....please! I LOVE YOU!!!"
Takato wailed in agony the second he heard Rika's declaration of love publicly spoken. Usually, Rika would try so hard to save her moments of happiness for times when she and Takato were alone, but in this case, she openly admitted it to everyone around her. "And I love you, too..." The Tamer gritted his teeth as he struggled to pull himself together, knowing it was a futile gesture, even as his sphere disappeared completely. "Guilmon...!"
That's when Takato was greeted with a little surprise...Gigimon, Guilmon's In-Training form, appeared before his eyes, a calm, yet happy look, on his face as he asked, "We'll play again soon, won't we, Takato...?"
Takato found the strength inside to smile, even as the rest of his body broke up into bits of data. "Yeah...yeah...!" Takato gasped in pain as everything around him went completely black!
The Tamers watched as the rest of Gallantmon's body burst into bits of data, but not before Takato and Guilmon shared some last words with their closest friends...
"Kazu, Kenta...try to stay out of trouble, huh?"
("That includes you and Guardromon too, MarineAngemon.")
"Ryo, I never thought I would say this, but...watch out for Rika while I'm gone, okay?"
("Cyberdramon, it was an honor to fight by your side...You truly are a great warrior...")
"Ai, Mako, the two of you have shown your worth and dedication to our cause...keep Impmon out of trouble..."
("Impmon, remember-to have true power, all you need are a few good friends, like me...")
"Jeri, stay as sweet as you are, and try not to miss me too much, okay?"
("Leomon, you are one of the bravest Digimon I know, and one of the strongest...Calumon, help Leomon while he keeps Jeri safe for Henry, okay?")
"Susie, try not to torture Terriermon and Lopmon too much-you really might rub their fur off!"
("Lopmon, you decided to help us against your fellow Devas, or, at least, the remaining Devas, and you helped us when we needed it the most-stay strong and stay by your Tamer's side.")
"Henry, try to forgive your father for what happened...Even if his intentions weren't that good, he was only doing what he thought was right, and friends come and go, but fathers are always by your side..."
("Terriermon, you reminded me of me in so many ways-except for the fact that I'm bigger than you in every level, except for the Mega level...just eat a loaf of Guilmon bread for me, okay?")
"Rika...I'll always love you, and I'll always be with you, right? If you ever come across a lone flower in a field, and you see some petals flying your way, just think of me..."
("Renamon, like with Cyberdramon, it was an honor to fight by your side, even if you did want to download my data when we first met. Just remember-you don't always have to be serious in front of everyone, especially for Rika...")
That's when, as the bits of data that had been Gallantmon: Magna Mode vanished entirely amidst the golden blaze of the skies, they heard Takato and Guilmon-Gigimon, actually-speak one last time, but in this case, it was to each other.
"Guilmon...you'll always be my friend, and no matter what, you'll always be that same bread-scarfing Digimon I created from paper and pencil..."
("Remember, Takato, you promised...You promised, Takato...!")
As the skies slowly, but surely, reverted to their normal bluish color, a heavy silence washed
over the team. That silence was broken within minutes as Rika dropped to her knees and cried
softly, trying to maintain her composure, and failing miserably. Acknowledging Guilmon's last
words, Renamon bent down and held her Tamer close, revealing some tears of her own.
('Cause when you are with me, I'm free...I'm careless...I believe...
Above all the others, we'll fly...this brings tears to my eyes...My sacrifice...)
The other Tamers started releasing their own emotions at that instant as well, Jeri, Henry and Rika probably doing more so than the others. Leomon and Cyberdramon even roared out a warrior's call, to mark the passing of a powerful Knight.
His tears blurring his vision, Henry turned his tear-striken girlfriend around and faced his father with a look that shouted unforgiveness.
"I know it hurts now, son-possibly even more so than usual, since you two were that close, but in time, it'll get better, and you and your friends will move on. You'll see! Even Rika will probably find someone else to marry-"
By this time, Rika had pulled away from Renamon and was now facing the spot she'd last seen her late fiance, her voice coming out as cold as ice, maybe even harsher. "I don't want to find 'someone else to marry'-I want to marry Takato, and because of that ring you gave him, he's gone, and he's never coming back!"
As if to hit the nail into the coffin himself, Henry sadly shook his head, signifying that between him and his father, things would never be the same following this event. Tears grazed Janyu's own eyes as he fell to his knees, not even close to imagining how much this would hurt him. "Henry, I...I'm sorry! I'm so very sorry!"
Tears streaking down her face, Rika walked over to that same spot mentioned earlier and noticed something glistening in the grass. After picking it up, she recognized it as the silver ring that had looked so similar to the Ice-Reaper's.
"We risk everything imaginable to save this rotten world, lose the one Tamer who actually had the power to beat that stupid frozen jerk, and this piece of junk doesn't get erased?! Uhhh!" Rika tossed the ring as high into the air as it would go, not even acknowledging that it had started glowing a grayish color.
Wiping his tears away, Kenta looked up into the sky and saw something emerge from a far distance. "Guys...look!"
With the exception of Rika, the others looked up into the sky and saw what could almost be considered the impossible: flecks of data strands were reemerging from the other side and were actually merging together with the remaining power of the ring! The sky suddenly grew brighter again as the ring's power intensified, trying to collect as much data as possible to reconnect. Somewhat amazed, Rika pulled herself out of her stupor and looked up to see the bits of data reformat themselves into a human body, a genuine flesh-and-blood body, and the human not only wore yellow-rimmed, blue glass-tinted goggles, had a golden-rimmed Digivice and wore a blue shirt, but he was also carrying a tiny In-Training Digimon under one hand! A second later, a completely restored Takato Matsuki dropped safely to the ground, holding tightly onto Gigimon, a confused look on his face, one that turned into joy and happiness as Rika hugged him fiercely, refusing to let him go.
"Takato! You kept your promise, and you came back...!"
"I had something on this world worth living for..." Takato admitted, closing his eyes and leaning forward for a kiss. What he received instead was a whack on the head!
"Ow! Rika, what was that for?!"
"For scaring me half to death and making me think you were gonna leave me! Don't you ever pull one of those 'sacrificial' moves again, 'cause one day, it might backfire on you, and you really will be gone! You got it, Gogglehead?"
Takato grinned sheepishly as he scratched the back of his head. "Good to see you haven't changed over the course of...a few seconds?"
"Welcome back from beyond the grave, Chumly!"
"Welcome back, Guilmon! Don't try scaring us like that again, okay, buddy?"
Within seconds, Takato and Gigimon were surrounded by joyous Tamers and happy Digimon, who were pleased that their friends hadn't truly died on them, at least, not completely. Renamon even shared a smile along with Gigimon, not that she would ever admit it-unless Terriermon tried blurting it out.
Takato quickly put Gigimon on his shoulder as he looked at Henry, who looked back at him. No words were needed in this conversation, because, as an anonymous person once said, "actions speak louder than words." Both Tamers hugged briefly before pulling away, Henry, for one simple reason, and Takato knew what that reason was.
"Dad...? I'm sorry for how I acted before. I couldn't think straight, and, to hear that you gave Takato the ring...all I saw was red. You're not the one who should ask for forgiveness...it's me!"
Smiling despite his tears, Janyu got up, and motioned for everyone to come close before succeeding in hugging the entire team, one or two at a time!
"Now, let's get these two downtown so they can get married!"
"You can say that again! Hey, Takatomon-now can I be the Ring Mon?"
The time was now 12:30. Over a half an hour had passed since Takato and Rika were originally supposed to be married, and now, the Tamer in question was shaking like a branch next to Guilmon-who'd, through some miracle of sorts-had Digivolved to his Rookie form.
"Oh, man. What if she doesn't come? What if she changed her mind just because I died and came back from the dead? What if she's hurt because I wasn't able to keep my promise to her? What if-?"
"Takato, relax a moment!" Henry laughed, watching Takato messing with his tie and pacing in front of the minister, who bore a striking resemblance to one of the actors on the show "Friends." (A/N: Try and guess which one! Hint-it's one of the guys!)
"Yeah-it's not like Rika jumped out of the bathroom window and left you at the altar." Ryo added. Takato gasped loudly as his pacing grew more frantic than ever before.
"Ryo, leave him alone!" Jeri hissed from the opposite side of the aisle. "Henry, help him!"
"I am helping him!"
"How-by telling him to relax and just standing there, watching your best friend act up on the day of his wedding?"
It was at that precise second that "The Wedding March" was played-and everyone who was seated stood up; the standees simply turned around-and all eyes were focused on Rika Nonaka's entrance.
Takato gasped lightly as he found himself staring at his future bride-to-be. It was obvious that her mother had gone all out to make sure Rika looked as best as she could on this day that had been so long in coming. She was wearing a wedding dress complete with frills on the sides of it, as well as some added sparkles to not only the dress, but to Rika's hair, which, for this occasion, was flowing down her shoulders. She was also holding onto a tiny bouquet as she finally approached Takato's side. Everyone sat back down, except for the standees.
"She looks even more beautiful than I thought she would...!"
"I didn't realize until now how much I'd been waiting for this day to arrive!"
"We are gathered here on this joyous occasion-that should've been over with at 11:00-to honor the union of Takato...M, and Rika...N."
"That's Takato 'Matsuki' and Rika 'Nonaka!'" Rika hissed irritably a second later. "Aren't you minister guys supposed to know about this stuff?!"
"Well, if you two had actually been here on time...!"
Rika gritted her teeth, and, after a glance in Takato's direction, forced herself to calm down, grabbing Takato's hand and holding it tightly.
Takato spoke up at that moment, a confused look on his face. "Excuse me, sir, but-aren't you that one guy from that TV show, 'Friends?' The one named-"
"Shhhhhh!! No, I'm not that guy! Do you wanna get sued by NBC or something?"
Takato sweatdropped and laughed loudly, repeatedly shaking his head. "No, no! Of course not, sir!"
"Good. Then, don't bring it up again, okay? Good. Now, every marriage is a happy one, and I'm sure that our young couple will be as giving and receiving in their new lives as they were apart."
Now both Takato and Rika had confused looks on their faces, as did the other Tamers and Digimon. "Come again?"
"Never mind! Now, if anyone has just cause to show why these two should not be married, speak now, or forever hold your peace."
Before Ryo could even get his hand raised, Rika stepped over to him, rose her dress ever so slightly, and kicked him right where it hurts! (A/N: Ouch! That's gotta hurt! Takato's Note: You can say that again... Rika's Note: Couldn't even last from one kick-Digimon King, my right foot!)
All eyes then turned to Jeri, who blushed and turned away. Henry, impatient to get the wedding continued, spoke up in her defense. "Jeri only likes Takato as a friend! I'm the one she's eventually gonna marry, so LEAVE HER ALONE!!"
The minister laughed loudly and responded, "Okay, then! While someone disposes of that guy on the ground there, the bride and groom have prepared their own...songs?! I thought at weddings, you gave vows!"
"All the good vows were taken." Takato cracked as he grabbed the microphone from the
minister and waited until Henry had gotten over to the organ before he started singing.
"Across the tears, I'll find myself checking everything one by one to a tomorrow where I can be myself...
"Running through the morning to the park where you wait for me...my shoes are getting tight again...
"I can't seem to catch up with myself as I grow...my heart is the only thing that's hesitating...
"I want to be stronger, but for what? I asked you, but you just laughed as if I were strange...
"Somewhere in my heart, there's a strong me...he only comes out once in a while, but you taught me...
"Across the tears, I'll find myself checking everything one by one to a tomorrow where I can be
As Takato finished his chorus once again, Rika felt unshed tears brimming around her eyes.
True, she had sung for Takato once before, but never would've imagined that he could sing just
as good! Before she could check and see if anyone else was as affected by this as she was,
Takato started singing up again-this next verse alone would remind the Tamers of the times
when Takato had turned Guilmon into Megidramon and ChaosGallantmon...
"Everyone just thinks I'm a nice guy...it's a little galling...!
"Being able to fight isn't the only way to be strong...I know that, but I can't say it...
"It's hard to see you get hurt for me...
"That's why I'm trying to get stronger, even if it's just a little bit...!
"Will my invisible wings get bigger, too?
"Just like when my shoes get tight, will I notice all of a sudden?
"Across the tears you're laughing...
"I'm sure I'll be able to get across, too, from my fingertips to tomorrow...
"Somewhere in my heart, there's a strong me...he only comes out once in a while, but you taught me...
"Across the tears, I'll find myself checking everything one by one to a tomorrow where I can be
myself..." (song ends)
Once Takato had finished singing, there wasn't a dry eye in the place. Even the Digimon had been affected by it, though both Impmon and Renamon would deny it.
Takato was astonished to see Rika gently take the microphone from him, but not as amazed as
he was when he saw Jeri pull Henry away from the organ. What truly left him starstruck was
when Rika started singing a song that Takato had completely forgotten about.
"We'll be together, forever, forever, because we promised that setting sun...
"I want to see you soon...Please convey that feeling...?
"You unexpectedly dove into my lonely heart; you kindly wrapped up the things that hurt a little...
"It was the first time I felt so relieved, so I squeezed that warmth into my outside pocket...Do you
want to go walking...?"
That's when Takato remembered-Rika had sung this song to him following their defeat of
Dracula, almost seven years ago to this day! Tears of his own started flowing down his cheeks.
He knew that he probably didn't deserve to be forgiven for what had happened, but she'd still
forgiven him, just like she said she would. That's when Rika continued on with the song, and the
groom allowed himself to be lost in her melodic voice.
"We'll be together, forever, forever, because we promised that setting sun...
"In lonely times, we can look at that lengthening orange...
"That setting sun will whisper, 'It will be okay...'"
"I want to see you soon...Please, convey that feeling, so that I can meet you with your very favorite...
"My best smile; I'll hang in through every day...
"We'll be together, forever, forever, because we promised that setting sun even if we are far away, we'll still feel that same orange...
"'It will be okay' because that setting sun connects us...
Smiling gently, Rika reached down to Takato's silent crying form and wiped his tears away, finishing the rest of her song that was basically dedicated to him, since she had sung it for him once before...
"Don't cry anymore...In the light of the love in our hearts..."
Once everyone was finished with their own tiny bouts of emotion, both the bride and groom received multiple applauses, the loudest ones being from the other Tamers, from their parents, and from a certain someone who had snuck in just as Rika had started singing. (A/N: No, it's not Ryo-Takato, calm down! I just said it wasn't Ryo!) When Rika had made her way back over to Takato, she noticed that same person give her a wave, blew her a tiny kiss, wished her well on her new life and left.
"Nice songs, you two..." Takato and Rika smiled gently at each other, a moment between the two that was ruined as the minister blew into his handkerchief.
"I'm sorry, just that...weddings always make me emotional..."
"Then, why are you our minister again?" Rika asked skeptically.
"Oh! Just because no one else could do it on such short notice."
Both Takato and Rika groaned as the minister continued on.
"Do you, Takato...M, take this-"
"Get this through your mop-based skull before I smash my fist through it-Takato has a full name-it's Matsuki, like my name is Nonaka! Do I have to repeat this for you?! No? Then get it right the first time!"
Takato laughed loudly as he pulled a very irritated Rika away from the minister, who had started shaking.
"This was how it went during rehearsals! The ministers would all get our names mixed up, and Rika would go postal on them!" Terriermon yelled out while standing next to Calumon, the two Digimon holding onto the pillows containing the rings.
"Okay! Do you, Takato...Matsuki, take this woman-we hope she's a woman!-to be your lawfully wedded wife-say no, and save yourself, man! For richer, or poorer, in sickness and in health, as long as you both shall live...?"
Takato reached down to where Terriermon was at and plucked the ring he'd had handcrafted especially for Rika. This time, it looked like her broken heart symbol, but inside of it was a blue diamond to remind Rika that people could change, inside and out. Case in point-if Rika turned her new wedding ring a certain way, the heart looked whole, just like her engagement ring had!
"Aw, come on! You're setting yourself up to take the fall, man! Be a man and say no! Take your beatings like a man-I do!"
Rika closed her eyes briefly and gritted her teeth once more, but this time, she held her ground. "Continue on, sir..." Rika made sure to put emphasis on the "sir" part.
"Okay...Do you Rika...Nonaka, take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband...? For richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, as long as you both shall live...?"
Rika held her breath as she casually leaned down and carefully took the ring from Calumon's outstretched paws before revealing it to Takato. It pretty much looked like a normal ring would, but when Takato turned it over, inside was a different matter-he saw tiny engraved pictures of Guilmon, Growlmon, WarGrowlmon, Gallantmon and Gallantmon: Crimson Mode that seemed to be inside his ring. Rika leaned forward and whispered, "I'll have the guy put in Gallantmon: Magna Mode later on..." before pulling back and responding with those words that literally made Takato's heart soar...
The minister sighed before responding, "Then by the power vested in me by God, this church and pretty much everyone here, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may....continue getting kissed by the bride." True to his word, once the minister had finished with "husband and wife," Rika had yanked her veil away and pulled Takato into a much needed kiss, one that she didn't release him from until both were in desperate need of air.
"Boy, when they tell you to 'kiss the bride' I didn't know it was gonna have the married couple sucking face!"
Takato and Rika turned toward the crowd as the minister announced, "May I now present to you Mr. and Mrs. Takato...M!"
"That's it!! Takato, let go right now! That's the last straw!!"
"Rika, wait! We still haven't walked down the aisle yet-it doesn't mean a thing!"
"It does if the guy keeps making the same stupid mistake over and over again!"
"Even though I thought things would never be the same, the world soon went back to normal, and after a while, so did Rika and I. Life became exactly what it was before we were ambushed by Infermon-Rika and I were getting adjusted to our new lives as husband and wife, Henry, Jeri, Kazu, Kenta and Ryo were getting adjusted to college life, Ai, Mako and Susie were getting adjusted to eventually going to high school, and our Digimon were still by our side-"
"Gogglehead-aren't you forgetting something?"
"Oh, yeah-that's right! Our reception was grand, and memorable. Sure, Ryo ruined most of it by returning in it midway and almost starting a fight between himself and Rika because of what she pulled during the wedding, but you can't say he didn't deserve it! That girl who Rika saved, and who saved me-Angela-she was one of Rika's bridesmaids, and she even got to dance with Kazu! What surprised us was when she took a chance and kissed him on the cheek! He enjoyed it, even if he did spend half the night trying to deny it-his cheeks gave him away.
Every now and then, Rika and I go by the park, just to see if Guilmon's shed is there. I don't know why we bother 'cause, it never really is. Despite our happiness together as man and wife, there's this one thing that depresses me-a promise I made to someone I deeply care about and love, and eventually ended up marrying...a promise I almost didn't keep..."
An older Takato looked up from where he was at towards a hill at Shinjuku park and saw Rika Nonaka Matsuki, a mocking look of impatience on her face. As he approached her, however, it turned into a gentle smirk as she pulled him into a kiss.
"Come on, Mom!"
"Yeah-not in front of us kids, huh?"
Takato couldn't help but grin as he looked down at his two kids-Rumiko Nonaka Matsuki, and Takato Matsuki II-or, T.J. as he prefers it-who were holding onto their own Digimon partners, Gigimon and Viximon. Guilmon, Renamon and Calumon-yes, even that cream-puff Digimon who everyone enjoys!-were also waiting as well.
Takato went back to his thoughts as he and Rika headed down the hill at a seemingly fast pace.
"Actually, scratch that! Thanks to a silver ring that mysteriously disappeared, I was able to keep
my promise to my soul mate after all...!"