Title: A Gift of Night
Guest-star: Night the cat
Authors: Higuchimon and LadyDragon
Ichijouji Ken heard the most agonizing, the most horrifying, the absolutely most terrifying sound he'd ever heard in his life. His heart began to sink and he felt a touch clammy. This sound could mean only one thing.
Daisuke wanted something. And it was probably going to be expensive or annoying to him or both.
"Ken!" Ken looked down at the deep, rich, beautiful, pleading eyes staring up at him and felt a chill going down his spine. "I want a kitty."
The blue-haired one blinked. This wasn't what he'd been expecting. "What?"
"I want a cat. I want a pet cat." Daisuke poked him in the stomach. "Something I can play with while you're off doing whatever it is that you do all day at work and I'm here painting by my lonely lonesome." He batted his eyes at Ken, who shivered a touch. Those eyes should definitely be registered as a lethal weapon.
"Daisuke," Ken reminded him softly. "We're not allowed to have pets." He shivered as artful tears began to well up in Daisuke's eyes. "It's not my fault!"
One tear dripped out. "But I'm lonely while you're gone." Daisuke pointed out the fish-tank with a fish swimming about. "He's no fun. Can't pet him. Can't take him for walkies. He doesn't catch mice."
Ken could feel his resolve starting to waver. "Cats don't like being taken for walks."
"We could train him." Daisuke sniffled. "My cousins in America have a cat they put on a leash and walk. And my pen pal has a cat that just won't leave her alone. He's always by her, always loyal, lays on her hands when she tries to type..."
"That doesn't sound very useful." Ken shivered at the pleading look in Daisuke's eyes and the pleading expression on his face. "They're loud and temperamental."
"They are not loud!" Daisuke protested. "Cats are quiet and loving and faithful and sweet and they can cast sleep spells!"
Ken blinked. "They can what?"
"Haven't you ever held a cat?" Daisuke asked, and Ken shook his head. "Well, when you hold a cat and they're purring, it'll put you to sleep."
Ken shook his head again. "You're just saying that, aren't you?" Daisuke had to just be saying it. It wasn't true...was it?
"You can ask Hikari," Daisuke offered. "I bet Miko, or even Tailmon, has put her to sleep lots of times."
"But we're not supposed to-"
Daisuke cut him off, pulling their lease out of his sleeve, and pointed to a paragraph. "We can have a small pet at a reasonable increase in rent, and we can afford that!"
"But a cat is still too big..." Ken protested again. Daisuke glowered at him.
"How big of a cat do you think I want? Some huge thirty pound monster that'll knock all of my easels over and take dumps on my portrait of Ken and the Banana Peel Thing?" Ken turned bright red, and winced as Daisuke immediately glowered again before the redhead screwed up his face as if he were about to burst into tears. "You don't love me anymore!!!"
Ken winced, and sighed. "Daisuke. You're almost twenty-four!" Daisuke pouted, fat tears rolling down his cheeks, the very picture of total heartbrokenness. Ken groaned weakly. "If our landlord finds out..."
"Like we can't move to the Digital World and have a house of our very own if we really wanted to?" Daisuke sniffled, a sight Ken usually found quite adorable, and still did even with the redhead's current scheming.
Ken threw his hands in the air, giving up. "All right, all..." He trailed off and stared at Daisuke suspiciously. "All right, where's the kitten?"
Daisuke blinked innocently, the tears vanishing as if never there. "What?" Ken just stared back at him, and Daisuke finally went into their bedroom, coming out a few moments with a tiny pure black kitten in his arms, sound asleep.
"I knew it," Ken murmured to himself, trying to glower at Daisuke. "You were too insistent for it to have just been an idea. Aren't we supposed to talk about things before you bring strays home?"
The redhead looked even more innocent. "She followed me home?" Ken crossed his arms over his chest and stared at Daisuke intently. "She did!"
Ken looked at Daisuke, using his own patented brand of How could you possibly think of lying to me, as he sniffled sadly. Daisuke parried his boyfriend's expression with yet another look of injured innocence.
"She did!" Daisuke insisted. "I went out to McDonald's for lunch and she was sitting outside when I got there and she was still there when I came out, and she followed me home!"
Ken's eyes narrowed. "You didn't encourage her at all by feeding her bits of Chicken McNuggets or hamburger?"
"Well, look at how thin she is!" Daisuke held the small kitten up, and Ken had to admit that she was rather undernourished. Still it was the principle of the thing.
"So you encouraged her to follow you home?"
Daisuke glared at him defensively. "She didn't have to eat the food!"
"Do you turn down free food?" Ken glared right back at him.
Daisuke looked at him as if he'd lost his mind, then grinned evilly. "You know better than that. How'd you get me to follow you home the first time? Hey, Daisuke, would you like to come over for dinner?"
Ken glowered as he looked from Daisuke to the kitten and back again. "You've already named her, haven't you?"
Daisuke petted the kitten gently. "Well, I was thinking about calling her Night."
"Why that?" Ken wondered. Daisuke shrugged.
"Cause everyone calls black cats Shadow or Midnight or silly things like that. But I just like Night."
Ken sighed. "All right." He blinked in shock as Daisuke leaned over and put the kitten in his lap. The small feline awoke, and stared up at him with huge green eyes. Ken blinked in surprise at the obvious intelligence in that emerald gaze. "Hello, Night."
Night yawned at him, nuzzling gently, then settled into his arms and began to purr as she slipped back into sleep. Ken jerked his gaze up to stare at Daisuke, completely out of his depth. Daisuke grinned at him.
"She likes you!"
Ken blinked, staring down at the kitten. "Aren't you going to take her?"
Daisuke shook his head solemnly. "Let sleeping cats lie."
"You're going to leave her here?" Ken asked, his eyes widening in shock. Daisuke shrugged.
"Why not? Isn't she pretty?"
The Child of Kindness blinked. "I guess...but she's your kitten."
"She's our kitten." Daisuke corrected. "Or we're her people. You see, you don't own cats. They own you."
Ken looked up at him in shock. This was starting to be more than he could handle. Daisuke just had to be pulling his leg this time. "You're joking, right?"
"You have a lot to learn about being owned by a cat." Daisuke told him. Ken looked at him warily.
"And just how do you know?"
Daisuke looked very solemn and serious. "There are many intelligent species in this universe. All of them are owned by cats."
"Really?" Ken looked completely and utterly surprised. Daisuke nodded.
"Of course! How can they be intelligent if they aren't owned by cats?"
Ken looked down at the cat, who was still purring at him. The ex-Kaiser tried to stop it, but he was feeling a little sleepy. He looked up again as Daisuke grinned.
"I bought a litter box and kitten food and had her shots taken care of already!" the redhead listed off proudly. Ken glared at him.
"You set me up! Daisuke..."
Daisuke looked at him seriously. "Look at her, Ken. I really do want to keep her. She's adorable."
Ken sighed. "I already said you could, but you know I don't like being set up like this."
Daisuke curled up beside him. "I'm sorry, Ken." Ken could tell Daisuke was being honest about this. "She..." He didn't continue for a few moments, until Ken encouraged him. "She reminds me of a cat I had when I was five. Jun and I went off to camp that year and when we came back, the cat was dead."
Ken nuzzled him gently. "I'm sorry." He smiled into Daisuke's eyes. "All right, all right. I'm not mad, okay?" He yawned deeply, and Daisuke grinned at him.
"I told you cats cast sleep spells."
Ken muffled another yawn. "It's been a long day."
"Let's go to bed, Ken?" Daisuke asked. Ken nodded and gestured to the kitten.
"What about her?"
Daisuke grinned. "I also bought her a kitten-bed." Ken looked at him. He suspected a lot more than a kitten-bed had been bought.
"I see. Then by all means, go tuck her in."
The redhead looked at him. "You're coming too." Ken blinked a bit in surprise.
"Of course I am, but you have to take your feline." He watched as Daisuke picked the kitten up and carried her into their bedroom, then followed. One corner of the room had been turned into what was effectively a cat suite: a bed, food and water dishes, a scratching post, some play sets, a self-scooping litter box, all of it concealable behind a screen. Ken shook his head. "She followed you all the way home, with several stops by every pet store between here and there?"
Daisuke nodded, and Ken sighed as he got ready for bed. "Smart cat." Lucky cat, too. Getting Daisuke to take care of her. He couldn't be jealous, though. Daisuke took care of him after all, and did so very well.
Daisuke curled up next to him and kissed him gently. "Love you, Ken. Good night." He peeked over to the kitten area and smiled. "Good night, Night."
Soon, they all slept...and unknown to Ken, he was going to wake up to feeling a small cold and wet kitten nose right against his neck.