Word Count: chapter: 2,864||story: 8,642
Well, that's one big hurdle down. She said yes. It's been twenty minutes since I hung up and I still can't believe it. I didn’t stop rocketing off the walls until about ten minutes ago. But now I've got one more thing I have to do. Actually, it's a lot of things, but this is the most important one right now.
I have to call Yamato and see if he'll cook for us next weekend. And what he's going to want if he does. I don't have a whole lot of money, so I hope he doesn't really want a lot. We're friends, so he shouldn't, not if I explain it's for Hikari. I hope.
V-mon keeps on staring at me as if I've lost my mind. Can't say I blame him. I've never been this happy! Well, there was that time we all saved the world from BelialVamdemon. That came pretty close. Well, maybe it's a tie. That would be kinda cool. I can't really think of anything that would make me any happier than this, at least. Which isn't a bad thing. Cause it means if something does, it's so spectacular and out of bounds that even I can't think it up before it happens. I’ve got an active imagination like you wouldn’t believe, unless you’re Ken or Hikari or one of the others, someone who knows me pretty well. Other than that, I’ve made a lot of people just stop and stare in shock when I said something that’s perfectly normal. I mean, normal by my standards, of course.
“What are you going to do, Daisuke?” V-mon has those huge eyes on me, and I can't think of what could be going through his mind. I'm sure it's nothing like what I'm thinking. Oh, sure, he had that one little moment when he was going off on Tailmon like I was on Hikari, but I don't think he really thinks of her like that. I'm pretty sure I saw him talking with Palmon the other day and they looked really friendly. And I know I don't like Mimi like that. So he's not thinking about trying to ask Tailmon out. Which is a relief, because it would just be too weird for me to start dating Hikari and him to start dating Tailmon.
But that does leave the question of just what he is thinking about?
Wait, this is V-mon. It's probably how to steal my secret stash of chocolate.
“I'm going to be taking Hikari out on a date!” I yell it as loudly as I can. I want people to know. I want everyone to know! Maybe I should throw open the window and scream it as loudly as I can. It's not like people haven't heard weirder things coming from our apartment, after all. There was that time that pack of Evilmon decided it would be really cool to have me for lunch. I don't really think a hundred decibel declaration of a date can really top a half a dozen Nightmare Shocks and things like that. Those are painful, too, and this was just me being happy.
Then again, my neighbors can be kind of weird. Maybe I should just wait until I howl it out to the heavens from outside, or even in the Digital World, where these neighbors wouldn’t hear a thing. The Digimon wouldn’t care.
“Daisuke?” Uh oh. Somehow, I don't think I have to tell the universe. For one thing, the universe kind of already knows. For another, I don't think my parents would be all that happy over me sticking my head out the window and yelling that kind of thing as loud as I can. They look pretty weirded out already. It's wacky enough just seeing them standing in the doorway there. Yup. I’m going to wait until I get to the Digital World to yell it out anymore. Or maybe just keep quiet about it.
“Mama?” I plaster on my best smile, the one that worked so great back with Mimi's parents that time in New York. The problem is that they didn't know me that well, so they bought it without too much of an effort on my part. My parents, on the other hand, have seen this kind of thing on a regular basis for years and years and years and years. They're really good at figuring out when I'm doing something I shouldn't be.
Maybe I should start doing the things I should be. That might throw them off the track long enough so I can do something really fun. But would it be worth it to maybe send their blood pressure out of whack like that? I'll have to think about it for a while. Maybe once I get past this date. Hey, maybe Hikari has some advice on what to do.
“What was that you were saying, about Hikari and a date?” Mama looks worried. Her little boy's growing up or something like that. Dad...well, he kind of looks like a dad, all proud and stuff. After all, his boy is growing up. It's weird, they looked like they switched the faces they had back when Jun first started dating. I should’ve taken pictures of that, but I was too busy being grossed out because people wanted to take my sister out. It’s my sister, those guys didn’t know her like I did!
I rub my head and give them the smile again, doubling up on the strength of it. Yeah, this'll work. I haven't tried double strength on them in a really long time. They won't know what to think. As long as V-mon doesn't say anything, I should be able to get past this. I don't think they're going to object or anything, but these are parents. They're unpredictable. They're dangerous. They're like those things you can watch on some of the nature channels sometimes. Maybe I should invest in protective gear. I think Ken can get me a really great deal. If he can't, I know Jyou can. He gets along pretty well with his dad these days, even though I heard that wasn’t always the case, but old habits die hard.
“Yeah, I kinda asked her out, and she kinda said yeah.” Now it was time for the next step, which is saying something so wacky that they'd leave just so they won't have to have me explain it. It got me through algebra. That, and Ken's tutoring. I'd rather thank the tutoring though. It doesn’t cause as many questions on when I'm getting put away for everyone's own good. As if I ever would be. “The fireflies made me do it.”
Both Mama and Dad look a little shocked on that one. Great, it's working, and it’s just what I needed. Dad scratches his chin and looks a little concerned. “The fireflies made you do it?” He's looking past me, to the window and the bugs still flashing on and off back there. Should I make a big production out of this? I think I just might.
“That's right.” A vigorous nod and the slightest hint of a manic grin provide me with a little more fodder, and fun. “They remind me of her, so I decided to call her up and ask her out.”
I've wondered what they thought when I say things like this. I like to imagine they take turns trying to figure out just which side of the family I get it from. I wonder if they'd believe me if I told them it's not from any side. I'm just me. And I like that a lot.
“Well, all right, Daisuke.” Dad comes over and pats me on the shoulder, this weird look of pride in his eyes. It's really amazing to see that. I don't think he looked this proud of me when I saved the world again last month. Guess dating outranks beating up a group of Waru Monzaemon pretty much singlehandedly, with just V-mon down to Chicomon to show for it. Then again, my dad doesn’t always understand the fighting, so this isn’t all that surprising. I wonder if my parents will ever get Digimon. Yamato and Takeru’s dad has one, and so do Miyako’s sisters. Her brother doesn’t though, at least not yet. I don’t know who assigns these things, so it’s hard to say. It just kind of happens somehow and sometimes. “Where are you going to take her?”
Time for some truth, not just trying to get them not to ask me about things I'm really too nervous to talk about right now. “We’re going to the Digital World. I'm gonna ask Yamato if he'll cook up some awesome dinner, and then we'll go for a walk or something like that.” Do I have great skills on first dates, or what?
Mama looks all weird now. “That's all? Not a movie or swimming or something like that?”
Hey, swimming! I'd never thought about that! Maybe I should ask Hikari if she'd like to bring along a swimsuit. Nah, I don't think that's the best idea. I want to impress her, and I don't think drooling like a maniac is the best idea. Not that what I'd be seeing wouldn't be worth drooling at. I've had enough daydreams about that to be certain. But there's something really cool about dreaming. It comes out just the way you want it, every time. I'm pretty positive that whatever Hikari's really got, it tops anything I could've ever dreamed up on my best day. The more I think about it, the more I'm sure I want to dream just a while longer. The reality’ll be incredible enough one day, and there’s no need to go overloading myself too soon.
“Nah, that's what everyone does!” I wave a hand like I've thought it all through. I bet they still haven't figured out I just make things up as I go along. They probably never will. Parents are slow on the uptake like that.
“Now, Ariko.” Dad starts to tug on her sleeve and pull her away from the bedroom door. “You should know by now that Daisuke just makes things up as he goes along. It's one of his strengths.”
Okay, so dad has figured it out. There goes one of my basic concepts of the universe. What's next, I wonder. Ken actually believing he's not the scum of the cosmos, without me having to beat him in the head with it every six months or so? Nah, that'll never happen. I don’t mind all that much, because it’s pretty cool to be able to outthink him whenever I can. I don’t get to do it very often. In fact, it’s usually only when he starts getting all droopy that I get to do it. But you have to take chances like that when they present themselves. Seize the day, that kind of thing.
Dad manages to get Mama out of there, and I close the door with a very deep sigh. That was so not how I wanted to tell them about my first real date. I kind of hoped I'd never have to tell them at all, at least not until it was over. Then I could've told them all about how awesome it was, and plumped it out in the right spots. Now I'll feel all obligated to tell them exactly what really happened once I get back. Great.
The phone is almost taunting me now. I’m not yet done with the things that I have to do. It's time to call Yamato and see what he has to say. He's the second link on this. If he falls through, I might have to persuade Mama to let me cook anyway. I don't think I'll have a lot of luck with that. She almost looked as if she were remembering the smell of scorched kitchen just when I mentioned dinner, even with Yamato's name being said in the same breath.
I know his number by heart. I know them all by heart, really. I've had to call just about everyone at warp speed a few times, so I made sure to memorize them all. It rings once. Twice. Three times. I'd better not get his answering machine! Or his answering Digimon, if Gabumon is there. I really hope that he and Sora aren’t off doing something together. They shouldn’t be, but you can never be too certain with those dating types. I hope I am one of those on a regular basis someday myself. Right now, it would just be too annoying.
“Ishida residence.” Who-hoo!! It's him! Now it’s time to get going with this.
“Yamato, it's Daisuke. I've got this really, really, really, really big favor to ask you.”
I can almost see him staring into the phone. This is going to be fun. “What is it?” He sounds so concerned, so cautious. I wonder if anyone else has ever done anything like this to him. They can't have, I would've heard about it. Miyako would've found out and told me, along with most of Odaiba at the same time. Nope, that's wrong. She would've made certain most of Tokyo heard her. Or even most of Japan. She has big ambitions, after all. I bet she’s in the government someday because of them.
“Hikari said she'd go on a date with me, and I want you to make us the absolute best dinner you can. We're gonna have it in the Digital World, and it'll be great!” I think I'm babbling again. Not that it bugs me too much. But it might him. That reminds me, I should take a gift or something when I pick Hikari up. Maybe something for Miko. She's an old cat now, but I saw this really cute catnip toy at the store the other day. It might help her feel better or younger or something. I bet Hikari would love that. And so would Miko. I wonder what Tailmon would think about it. I have no idea how catnip would affect a Digimon. I wonder if Koushirou does.
Oops, Yamato's talking. I'd better listen, it's probably important. “What did you want me to make? And when is this...date?” Yeah, he'd probably want to know something like that. It wouldn't be a good idea to have him cooking up something three days early or something like that.
“It's a week from yesterday. Next Saturday night. And...well, you know what we both like the best. So kind of...I dunno, surprise us?” Yamato likes that kind of thing the most. It's what Taichi usually tells him. And he does, every time. “I trust you not to poison us or anything.”
“Thanks, Daisuke.” That halfway sarcasm of his is really weird sometimes. But I don't mind it. It's just Yamato. It also kind of reminds me of Takeru. They're a lot alike, which is really scary sometimes. People shouldn't be that much alike. Oh, wait, that's what some people have said about me and Jun, or me and Taichi. Well, what do they know? I know what I'm talking about. They don't. So there.
“No problem.” I can kinda figure he's trying to think of a polite way to ask if he's getting anything out of it. He knows how to keep his manners working no matter what. Maybe I should ask for some lessons. Nah, I'm fine the way I am. Now how should I put it to him? Oh, yeah.
“You don't really need to make it all that cheap, you know. But not too expensive either. I guess...um, just follow your instincts?” Okay, maybe I didn't quite know how to put it. But it worked, didn't it? That's what counts. “If you’re still not sure, I could go shopping and get some stuff for you to make.” I’d already thought about that before, but somehow I didn’t remember when I was asking just now. I can get distracted like that. Good thing it doesn’t happen when we’re in a fight.
“No, I don’t think you’ll have to. I can figure out what to do. I’ll just give you the bill afterwards.” He’s grinning. I know he is. But what can I say? Not ‘no’, that’s for sure. So I don’t.
“All right. Thanks, Yamato. For everything.” He could’ve said no or started listing off really expensive things just to scare me, and he didn’t. I trust that he’s not going to break me, at least not too much. I’ve got enough stashed away in my secret hiding place not to have to worry too much about what he’s going to make. It’ll be worth it, too, for Hikari. She’s worth anything, and anyone who knows her would agree with me about it.
Once I'm done with Yamato on the phone, I sag back down on the bed and stare out the window at the fireflies going here and there in the shadows outside. I can’t believe all of this has happened, and all because of them, really. In less than an hour, they've changed half my life. All I can think now is “Wow. What's next?”
To Be Continued