The messy haired goggle wearing Takato still couldn't believe it. It was sitting there right in the middle of the park... localized entirely within the unused park shed! A portal to the digital world.
Was Guilmon Okay? What about Guardromon and Renamon?
He sure hoped so...
Not many people remembered Digimon, due to the time reversal shenanigans that had been pulled when they sent the D-Reaper back to the Digital world. Would his parents even give him digital world travel permission this time?
He'd have to tell the others first though… Without alerting Jeri. Jeri had just given up on interacting with them in general…
'Jeri… If I could bring back Leomon for you. I would…' He thought so loud he could hear it
He walked without thinking for a long time after that.
Soon he found himself at home.
"Mom, Dad I'm home!" he yelled.
"How was the park?" His Father asked.
How was he supposed to respond to that?
"I met Henry at the park. Uh… hmm, uh. Oh yeah, He told me Rika's family is having a sleepover tomorrow, and he'd thought he'd invite me." he said, His father raised an eyebrow. "Well I approve one hundred-perce-OW!" His mother had tugged on his father's ear.
"Not without his toothbrush, and he needs to pack clothes, and maybe some pastries…" She ranted as Takato snuck out of the room and stepped upstairs. His parents had recently given him a cellular phone, now was the perfect time to talk to Rika and Henry.
"Beep boop booda boop" his phone sang quietly as he dialed Henry's number in.
"Hey Takato. any leads on finding the digimon?" His friend spoke from the receiver. "A big lead! A Humongous lead! … A digiportal!" He whispered excitedly.
"What!?" Henry hoarsely whispered. "Where did you find it?"
"The shed! Can you believe it? It's there again! Man oh man Rika will flip when she finds out it's there." He fantasized. He felt Henry was nodding and hmming and hahing on the other side of the phone. "Did you get your parents to approve of the investigation meeting?" Henry asked. "Yeah, I just told them it was a sleepover at Rika's, I mean it sort of is." He felt a twinge of guilt for twisting the truth.
"If I told them it was about the digimon they'd probably sit me down for a talk..." He admitted.
He could practically feel Henry nod.
"Momentai." he, Henry, said.
"Thanks Henry, see you at school." He replied. "Don't forget your toothbrush!" Henry joked before he stopped the call.
Later that night Takato lay awake, thinking in his bed.
Would Guilmon ever be able to help around the bakery? Sure he was a digimon… and he could be scary sometimes, but…Guilmon loved bread…Guilmon is such a goof… kinda timeless… like a cartoon… was… he…... Like... Guilmon?
It was at that point that he started to dream.
"Guilmon… I… Love… you…" he spoke aloud.
Yoshie Matsuki had gone to check in on her son at that moment. Her son loved his small red dinosaur a whole awful lot… She remembered how sad and lonely Takato had felt that week…
Takato hadn't drawn anything. Takato barely spoke. Takato had been sluggish.
It had hurt to see her son dry out like the day old bread.
Then one day Takato's friend came over, Henry? Was it? After her son had talked to Henry, he seemed happier. That made her think… and that thought had lead to another. When she gave Takato a cellular phone his eyes had lit up in a way they hadn't in a week.
Takato, Please be ok.
At Rika's Place:
"Figures you'd disguise a strategy meeting as a sleep-over." Rika said with a raised brow. "What- how?" Takato said, shocked at her 'Brilliant' deduction. "Your pajamas are peeking out of your bag GoggleDoofula." She revealed to him.
While she was waiting for Takato to set up, Rika started thinking... Honestly couldn't Gogglehead have said it was a tea party instead? Like the ones those 'Americans' were famous for?
She shivered, no that would be much worse.
A teaparty would mean her mom would get involved and she would eventually call her that embarrassing nickname. And that gruesome image she associated with it would pop up again... That damn fourth scrapbook picture!
"Rika, your friends are calling for you!" the woman she was dreading, her mother, called.
… Time to clear her head of edgelord.
"I'll be there!" She called back.
So she quickly slinked into the living room where her 'friends' sat around a table.
"So what's it this time?" She asked. "The portal at the shed, it's back." Takato said.
She sighed. Figures it'd be there.
"Let's get going then!" She shouted bossily. "Rika are you sure about this?" Henry asked her.
"Yes I'm sure." She said. "Besides if the Digiportal works the way I think it does we should be alright" She said with a slightly condescending tone.
"Alright, but let me call my parents first. They'll be worried sick about me." Takato said. Takato took out his cell, and presumably dialed in his home phone number.
While Takato did that, she called out. "Mom, Grandma! I'll be in the digital world for a bit."
"Rika darling, Call before you do anything rash." Her grandmother called back. "Sure." She replied.
She stood up and walked over to the house phone. Wait, did she know Yamaki's phone-number?
"Henry, what's Yamaki's number?" She called out. "It's 555-555-5555" Her friend called back.
"Got it" She said, dialing in the number with ease. With a press on the enter button She started waiting.
Did Yamaki still have his job? Rika wondered. Maybe the funky time stuff meant that somehow Yamaki still had it.
"This is Mitsuo Yamaki speaking," Yamaki's voice startled her out of her thoughts.
"This is Rika Nonaka," She said,
She heard static. Was someone listening to the call? How would she say the tamers were taking a trip to the digital world without giving it away?
"We'll be needing backup if 'our camping trip today' goes wrong." She said, emphasizing 'camping trip'. "Understood, Stay safe." Yamaki responded curtly and dropped the call.
Rika smiled, If all went well, she'd be back soon with Renamon in tow.
Mitsuo Yamaki sighed.
Why did those kids have to call, while he was doing his laundry? What did a 'camping trip' even mean?
Then the meaning hit him.
He immediately dialed up Riley. "Riley, I need you to make sure those kids stay safe." Yamaki said.
"Yes, sir. I can do that favor for you." Riley promised without hesitation.
He felt himself relax. "You can come back to work anytime." Riley's voice offered.
Tension appeared, tightening his being.
"Today isn't that day," Yamaki responded. Besides, finishing with his nicotine addiction therapy was imperative.
"Understood. Good luck Boss." His co-worker dropped the issue along with the call. He sighed. There had been static in that call.
Why did he own such a crappy Dryer?
/AN: In ace attorney I learned that heavy heat like
/from a Hair Dryer or a Laundry Dryer can cause
/That's what's happening here
/ I just wanted to have an excuse to make the scene edgier.
Inside the DigiPortal:
Henry wondered exactly what Rika's plan was.
And suddenly Rika started to explain aloud. "You know how we have to wish for the blue card?" He nodded. "Shibumi told me that this Digiportal, is like, you know, a… wishing well for thoughts." The Tamers all stood over a wishing well, staring down into the abyss.
"I see," he said, careful not to think of anything.
"So you think that our partners will just appear here?" Takato asked.
…he sighed. Terriermon would be here by now if that were the case. ... ...
"I thought it would work" Rika admitted after several seconds of no bizarre changes. He had to admit that Rika's reasons to think it would work were sound. Something must be preventing them from getting their partners!
He heard Takato's phone ring. Takato answered. "Yello- This is Takato Matsuki speaking."
"Do you want to start fresh? Press the '1' key to say 'yes. Press the '2' key to say no." a woman's voice rang from Takato's phone.
"No thank you." He saw Takato press the '2' key.
"Spam call, what were we talking about again?" Takato asked. Rika was explaining the portal, Rika was explaining the portal, Rika was explaining the portal.
Takato's phone rang again, Takato sighed and answered it. "Yello- This is Takato Matsuki speaking."
Takato gasped and covered the receiver. "Henry, they say it's for you"
He accepted the phone from Takato.
"Henry A. Wong, Take the 10:00 am train from Shibuya Station," The line went dead without warning.
"Creepy" He said.
There were screams that dripped blood, all of them surrounded him. Shivers ran up his spine.
"Let's get out of here. We need a new plan anyway." Rika commented.
Rika was totally scared of the screams wasn't she. Not that he could blame her.
The next day, on the train to Jiyuugaoka:
Takato sighed. He had chosen a seat opposite to Henry. Rika had chosen to stand.
It wasn't typical of Henry to get the Tamers into messes. He stared at his fellow Tamer… Henry was facing down, what was he worried about?
"Takato, you're stareing." Henry's gaze met his own.
"Oh… I was thinking, we've never gotten into a mess because of you Henry" He explained.
"I would say otherwise." Henry spoke softly.
… What was he talking about? …
Oh, the mess they were currently in… but wait, that wasn't Henry's fault, wasn't it the Monster Maker's?
Maybe he should talk to Henry.
"The digimon thing isn't your fault," he said, careful to be vague.
Henry didn't respond. Did he say something wrong?
"Thanks, but I have to take responsibility anyway." Henry...
"I was the means to the end in that situation, and the end doesn't justify the means Takato." Henry said…
His cell phone rang… AAAA, He fished it out.
"Yello- This is Takato Matsuki here" he said.
"At Jiyuugaoka station, enter the elevator at 10:45." it was the same woman from before! Uh what should he say? "What's this about?" he asked.
The woman didn't end the call.
"This is a matter of reuniting old friends, Takato Matsuki."
He was stunned, out of all the things a mysterious stranger on the phone could ask for, it was getting their friends back together? That sounded weirder than Calumon's soccer field.
"Wait, what about us? How are we involved?" He asked.
"Takato Matsuki, don't keep your friends waiting." The woman said, the call dropped.
"Guys, I'll explain at Jiyuugaoka, but it looks like this train thing got a whole lot fishier" He said.
"It was fishy in the first place, Gogglebrains." Rika pointed out.
At Jiyuugaoka near the elevator:
Rika was thinking.
'Brilliant', just 'fantastic', the elevator that they were supposed to take was out of order. Just how did that 'mysterious' caller expect them to get on?
It was obviously spam, and had nothing to do with them!
She had half a mind to voice this, but there was this little eensy teensy bit of her that screamed 'you have nothing better to do and that you want to see what this whole reuniting 'friends' thing was about.'
Great, even her inner moral compass had been infected with sarcasm.
She had mixed opinions on sarcasm, it was fun, but most people expect honesty and directness in conversation.
But she used it anyway.
"Rika c'mon!" She heard Henry shout.
The world in slow motion, she ran to the elevator, barely and squeezed herself inside.
Her heart raced. She counted shoes, anything to prevent panic.
1 2, 3 4, 5 6, 7 8, 9 10, including her own.
"Why are there more people inside this elevator than just us?" She asked.
Takato and Henry probably blinked. "Rika, are you see-AAAAAAAH" they screamed as they probably realized, that yes, there were two extra teenagers with them.
"Kouji, where did these middle schoolers come from?" one stranger said to the other.
"I don't know Kouichi, but there must be a reason. Perhaps Lady Ophanimon invited them…?"