DigiHazard - A Digimon Tamers Story


I'm a Maniac
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Aug 3, 2013
The Analog World
This is a fanfic concept I've had for years, basically since 2013 or so. I've never had a chance to write it, but now that I've gotten better at writing I'm hoping I'll be able to make something of it. It'll mostly be a slice-of-life thing at first, but you can probably guess that it'll get more intense as it goes on. If you like what you see, drop a reply and let me know what you think!

Three years since the D-Reaper's attack on the human world, the Tamers who saved the world still struggle to cope with the loss of their partners. Meanwhile, prompted by a sudden and unexpected move to Shinjuku, the young Zachary Morse finds himself embroiled in a conflict he never wished to be a part of.

U.S. Department of Defense — Undisclosed Location, 1978


The words on the massive computer monitor lit up brightly against the cavernous walls, the sickly green contrasting against its enormous black screen, towering fifteen feet above all the researchers and military personnel. He'd always thought such a monitor seemed excessive, but President's top men were never ones for common sense.

Regardless, he watched with bated breath as the screen lit up further, its state-of-the-art graphics displaying the test in as much detail as it could allow. Lime-colored pixels slowly filled up the screen, forming blurred images that slowly coalesced into a recognizable image — the circular outline of an island, with tiny dots moving in little blips. The room watched intently as a vertical green line appeared across the abstract landscape, slowly sweeping from left to right. He adjusted his glasses the line passed over each of the moving dots, watching intently as they each vanished, one by one.

Finally, when the line had reached the right side of the screen, all the green dots had vanished.


As the words displayed across the screen, a palpable wave of relief washed over the room. Before long, a slow applause built up among the suits and generals, reaching a crescendo within seconds. It was not loud applause by any means, but the feeling of success was no less tangible.

As the crowd began to disperse and mingle, a grey-haired man with sharp cheekbones and a four-star lapel pin approached, bearing a subtle smile that looked entirely unfitting for his face.

"Well I'll be damned, you actually did it! And here I was thinking Dr. Beckenstein was crazy for putting you in charge."

A frown crossed his face. I sure hope Johnny never learns about this. "Well sir, I'm grateful for your support, but keep in mind that this is still just a test. We won't be ready to properly deploy the project for a while."

"Right. Standard procedure and all that. I'm not too familiar with your computer jargon, but it doesn't take a tech wizard to know good work when you see it. Your country thanks you, son."

"Thank you, sir," he replied. As he reached out and shook the general's hand, his fingers were summarily crushed by a grip far too strong to be unintentional. He couldn't help but think of the difference in status between the two of them, and suspected that was the whole point.

As the general slipped away, he slipped back into his own thoughts, reflecting on the task at hand, and what it had taken to accomplish it. Months of tireless work for hours on end, with plenty of sleepless nights. The rigid conformity and secrecy, locked away in a building that didn't even have windows, where some days he didn't even manage to see the sun. Generals and officers that seemed almost eager for war, who didn't care enough to understand his work even though it was vital to their goals. Even now, as the top brass was praising him, it came as a backhanded compliment.

But all of that paled in comparison to what he had just seen on the screen. There was no doubt in his mind that the world that had appeared on the computer screen was real, and yet none of it was of any concern to the Pentagon. It was just another computer network, another piece of technology to be used for whatever they saw fit. Nobody seemed to think that the burgeoning lifeforms they observed were truly alive.

In the end, he decided to stop even worrying about it. It was the Army, after all. If they discovered an alien form of life, it was only fitting that they'd destroy it.

The screen lit up again, with new words. "BEGIN SECONDARY TEST FOR VERSION 0.5.0" He looked on as the program of his design scanned across another island, and once again watched the result of his hard work bear fruit.
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I'm a Maniac
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Aug 3, 2013
The Analog World
Shinjuku Ward — Tokyo, 200X

"Oof!" The sound echoed through the room, followed by a heavy thud as the cardboard box fell to the floor, kicking up a small cloud of dust. Above the box was Charles Morse, a man with wire-framed spectacles and receding golden-brown hair. He let out a sharp breath, pulled up his khakis by the belt, and gave the entrance room one final survey. The entire space was free of furnishings, save for the carpeted floor and the myriad moving containers.

"Well, that should be the last of them. What do you think, Zack? Nice place to call home, eh?"

Zack hesistated to respond. His eyes remained firmly focused on the carpeting, refusing to even glance at his father. "My home's in America," he muttered.

"Aw come on, it's not that bad. I think you'll love it here! You just need some time to get used to it, that's all."

"No, I don't," Zack curtly replied.

"Hm," Charles said with a frown. He crossed his arms, looking contemplative beneath his thin mustache. Before long, he was back to his usual, sickeningly cheery smile. "Tell you what. Why don't you go out and walk around for a bit? I'm sure it'll do you good after being cooped up in a plane for so long. In the meantime, I'll go ahead and unpack all your things, so you don't have to worry."

Zack sighed. "Yeah, sure. See you in a bit." As much as he didn't want to admit it, he was aching for a chance to stretch himself out. The constant clutter of empty boxes was nearly as bad as the plane. And that was to say nothing of the lingering dust, which was almost unbearable.

Thankfully, it didn't take long to make his way out the door. It was a small house, so small it barely resembled any of the houses he knew in America. The front door led down a single flight of stairs out into a tight alley, lined with other small buildings built from concrete and render, painted dark colors by the setting sun. As he descended the staircase, a raccoon rummaged through a trashcan on the opposite side, fleeing the moment it noticed Zack's approach. He paid the clatter of the overturned garbage can no mind as he walked down the street, his right hand compulsively combing through his thick brown curls, and the other held firmly in his left pocket.

Why Japan? And why here in Japan, of all places?

As he ran his fingers through his hair, they became caught on his headband, still tightly strapped against his forehead. It was a gift he received for his birthday, several years ago. Its deep blue color complimented his eyes well, he'd been told. Since then he'd never stopped wearing it to school, until the elastic became too stretched out to function, forcing him to tie it around the back of his head in a knot.

His left hand, meanwhile, remained firmly in his pocket, fidgeting with the object inside it. Its smooth, rounded corners and triangular shape were oddly comforting, even after all this time. No matter how much his life had changed, he always carried it with him, providing a beacon of familiarity in a sea of tumultuous changes.

Suddenly, Zack stopped in his tracks. Just then, he had felt... something. He wasn't sure what it was, but the hair standing up on the back of his neck didn't seem to think it was anything good. And, for the briefest of moments, he could almost swear he saw something in the corner of his eye, darting across the rooftops. But when he craned his neck upwards to look, there was nothing there.

Zack let out a breath he didn't know he was holding. Dad was right, the stress of moving really is getting to me.

"Vee Headb — OOOOOW!"

Pain. Everything was pain.

Well, maybe not everything, but certainly all the head-related things. It was hard to think when all the head-things were hurting.

Slowly, as the world came back into focus, Veemon stood up, clutching the top of his cranium with both hands. Despite the blurriness of all the sight-things, it soon became apparent that those things were different things than before. Namely, the concrete wall opposite him, and the big head-sized crater that was in it.

"Ugh... what happened? Where's the guy I was fighting?"

The world's spinning slowed, and the double images coalesced into single ones. When clarity at last returned, Veemon was left staring at something entirely unfamiliar — a city street in the evening, far from the sunless wasteland he had known mere seconds earlier.

"Oh hey, I'm in the Real World now. That's new." He paused for a moment, still swaying as his head spun. The words he'd just spoken rattled around in his brainspace, until several seconds later, they landed in comprehension.

"Huh!? I'm in the Real World!?"
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I'm a Maniac
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Aug 3, 2013
The Analog World
Okay. So I'm in the Real World. That shouldn't be possible anymore, but somehow I'm here.

Veemon paced back and forth in the alley, his footsteps plodding along the pavement, fixated on the unusual physicality of the asphalt against his toes. He stared at his hands, flexing his fingers open and closed.

Hands seem normal... though they feel a bit tingly, I guess. Is that how bio-emerging is supposed to feel?

His eyes drifted across the alley. There were no signs of any other people around, thankfully, but he couldn't shake the feeling that something else was wrong.

Hmm. If I remember what the village chief said, there's supposed to be some sort of field when you bio-emerge, and you can't leave until it goes away. But I'm not seeing anything like that?

Before Veemon could continue the thought, a sharp pang ran through his stomach, followed by a very loud grumble. He clutched his belly, barely managing to stifle the noise.

Ah, I'll think about it more when I'm less hungry.

Even in an unfamiliar country, there was always something oddly soothing about the cityscape. It was far enough from the center of Metropolitan Tokyo that nobody else was around to interrupt, yet close enough that he could see the buildings against the sky. He stood watching as the sun slowly crawled below the horizon, and the skyscrapers in the distance became a tapestry of electric lights against the darkness.

Without even thinking, Zack began to step forward. The air filled his lungs with every step, putting him at ease. There were few things that he found more relaxing than a walk at night, even in a strange and unfamiliar country. Thoughts of home, thoughts of friends he left behind, and thoughts of change poured all at once through his mind, only to be calmed again by the cool breeze blowing by.

Before long, Zack had moved out of the alleyway and into the main street beyond. It was then that a pair of lights flared at the edge of his peripheral vision.

A quiet dread filled his chest. He turned his head towards the light, only to be blinded by a pair of hi-beams in the darkness. The car that bore them sped forth without hesitation, barrelling towards him seemingly unaware of his presence. As it grew closer, time itself seemed to slow to a crawl as the blaring car horn filled his ears. He could only close his eyes and wait for the inevitable impact.

But the impact never came. Just as the lights grew close enough to pierce through his eyelids, Zack felt something tightly wrap around his waist, and let out a yelp as his feet were swiftly lifted off from the ground. His eyes still screwed shut, he could feel his spin from rapid motion, before feeling himself being placed back upright on the ground.

The grip around his waist released, and Zack opened his eyes, letting them adjust to their normal function. As the world came back into focus, he saw himself standing on the sidewalk, before an unfamiliar figure.

She was a girl, with a hair of fiery spikes that swept backward, extending down to the base of her neck. She wore cuffed shorts and a studded belt, and a blue T-shirt with a striking yellow fox tail printed on the front. Despite being roughly the same age, her eyes pierced through him like the glare of an authority figure that was profoundly disappointed in him.

"[You should look both ways before you cross, band boy.]"

"Um... sure. Can you repeat that? I'm still new at Japanese." His right hand traveled instinctively to his head, the fabric in his headband soaking up the sweat from his fingers. "You were complimenting my headband, right? Sweatband. Or still headband, since I guess a sweatband is a type of—"

"Idiot! I don't care about your fashion choices! You could have died back there!"

Zack breathed out, letting the tension escape his chest. "Oh thank god, you actually speak English."

"So what if I do?" the girl harumphed. "That doesn't change the fact that you nearly got yourself killed. What's a foreign kid like you even doing wandering Tokyo at night?"

Zack hesitated. He turned his head and glanced over his shoulder, looking back at the alley he came from. "Honestly? That's kinda what I'm wondering myself."

The girl raised an eyebrow. "Hm?"

"I just got here earlier today," Zack continued. "My dad said we had to pack up and move to Shinjuku. Leave pretty much everything I've ever known behind. I've no idea why, and so far he won't tell me. I just... I dunno. I thought maybe taking a walk would clear my head."

For the first time, the girl's expression softened. There was a twinkle of something in her pupils that Zack couldn't quite place. Sympathy, perhaps, but her eyes still remained distant. "I see. Well, I'm sorry to hear about that. Just try to be more careful in the future."

"Yeah, sure. Thanks," Zack muttered.

The girl turned away, pausing to look over her shoulder. "Oh, and try to brush up on your Japanese. You're going to need it here."

"Right, sure. I was... I was planning to." But Zack's words remained unacknowledged, as the girl was already well on her way down the sidewalk, strolling into the distance. As she did, Zack couldn't help but stare in lingering bewilderment.

That girl... there's something odd about her. Just who was she?

And the question would remain on his mind through the rest of the night.
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I'm a Maniac
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Aug 3, 2013
The Analog World
By the time Zack returned, it was already well into the night, easily past midnight. Strangely, he had not felt the least bit tired — though that was probably just the jet lag talking. Regardless, he managed to make his way back to the apartment with little issue.

Many idle thoughts lingered on his mind, thoughts of the home he left behind, of the country he now had to live in, and of the strange girl he’d met earlier that night. But as he turned into the alley leading to his home, his attention was pulled immediately to his surroundings.

The trashcan opposite his home remained knocked over, and now a small figure was rummaging through its contents, laying flat on its stomach as it buried its face into the garbage. It was hard to see in the shadow hanging over the alley, appearing small and reptilian, but otherwise with no features he could discern through the shadows. Its tail twitched lazily back and forth as it loudly devoured the contents of the trash can, its slurping and munching loudly echoing over the pavement.

Geez. The urban wildlife here is gross.

He paid the creature no more mind, and promptly began to walk up the stairs leading up to the apartment entrance. There was a long day ahead of him tomorrow, his father no doubt running errands all day. That would leave Zack with nothing his own company, and all the time in the world to settle in. He was very much not looking forward to having nothing to do all day.

As he headed up the stairs, his hand wrapped around the doorknob, and heard the satisfying click of the door opening. Before he could return to the apartment, he was startled by a sudden clanging of metal, and voice calling to him from behind.

“[Hey! You’re a human, right?]”

A jolt ran up Zack’s spine. His feet shifted as he swerved around, his fists clenched and raised in front of him. Perhaps nearly getting run over by a car had left him on edge, perhaps it was just hearing someone call out to him in the dead of night in an alley. Either way, it sent the hairs on the back of his neck standing upright.

“Back off! I know karate — huh!?

Zack blinked rapidly, staring at the blue lizard creature standing before him, still covered in little flecks of garbage.

“You’re… a digimon.”

“Oh, so you speak English?” said Veemon. “That’s cool, I know English too! We digimon have encoding support for over fifty different character sets!” He tilted his head to the side and frowned, cleaning out the inside of his ear with a finger. “…At least, that’s what the chief told me. I’m still not sure what it has to do with us knowing a bunch of languages.”

Zack rubbed his eyes. “The jet lag must be getting to me. Now I’m seeing things.”

“What?” said Veemon. “You don’t believe me? Here, I’ll show it to you! ¡Hola! Me llamo—”

“No, shut up!” Zack cut in. “You’re not real. I’m just really stressed out right now. Look, if I just scan you for a second, it won’t show anything, and it’ll prove you’re just a figment of my imagination, see?”

Reaching into his pocket, Zack wrapped his fingers around the object he’d carried with him through the night. It was a D-Power digivice — with a slight diagonal crack spanning across its white exterior, and a silver trim encircling its screen. As he held out the device and pressed a button, and a small holographic display popped out:

Name: Veemon
Level: Rookie
Type: Dragon
Attribute: Vaccine

  • Vee Headbutt
  • Vee Punch

Zack’s jaw hung loose as he stared at the display. “Huh? No, that can’t be right.”

Veemon, meanwhile, could only stare back with equal slack-jawed disbelief. His eyes seemed to light up the night as he gazed up at the display with the wonder of a child. “Whoa… you have a digivice!”

“Uh, w-wait, I can explain…”

“That’s amazing! You know what that means, right?”

“Now hold on—”

“That must mean you’re my tamer!”

“What!? No! Wait just a minute!”

“Oh my gosh, this is amazing! A real tamer! I’ve always wanted one of those!”

Veemon, shut up!

The shout echoed across the corridor, Zack inhaled and let out a heavy breath, hoping to the stars that nobody had heard his sudden outburst.

“I’m not your tamer, okay!?” said Zack. He looked down at the digivice in his hand, pressing a button to turn off the holographic display. “And this is just… just…” His words trailed off in a sigh. “Look, I just don’t want anything to do with digimon. So just go home, okay? And go wash yourself off, you smell disgusting.”

Before he could even take the time to hear Veemon’s response, he placed his digivice in his pocket, turned around, and headed through the door.

I’m sure when I wake up tomorrow, none of this will have ever happened.

Shinjuku Region — Analog Space, 200X

Less than a year ago, the place she now stood have appeared almost alien. An endless circuitboard beneath her feet, stretching out in all directions, as far as the eye could see. Occasionally dotting the landscape in the distance, spread at least a mile apart, were large black objects in a variety of simple geometric shapes — cubes, pyramids, and cylinders alike. These “nodes,” as she had come to know them, were also embedded with electronic circuitry, traveling down and connecting to the endless circuitboard beneath her.

But in front of her now was the one object that continued to baffle her. Unlike the various nodes, it was a perfect sphere, not black and engraved with electronic signals but smooth and white, devoid of any imperfections. It was too smooth and stationary to be a Hypnos probe, but far too small to be one of the skyscraper-sized nodes. Most concerning of all, on its front it bore the trefoil mark of the Digital Hazard.

Rika’s eyes glanced to the side. As if on cue, a flash of yellow jumped out from her blind, taking the shape of a tall, bipedal fox as it landed in her peripheral vision.

“Did you take care of the probes, Renamon?”


“Good. And the firewall?”

Even in the corner of her eye, Rika could see Renamon’s frown. “The Sovereigns’ wall is deteriorating at an accelerated rate. It has not stopped enemy breaches, and it soon may not hinder them at all.”

“Great… as if we didn’t have enough to worry about.” She looked up, at the sphere floating above. Many failed attempts at destroying it flashed through her mind, the ominous orb surviving everything thrown at it without a scratch. “Perform reconnaissance on the surrounding nodes, and report back to me. I’ll be waiting at HQ Node for any updates.”

Renamon gave a nod, and in another flash of yellow, she was gone.
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I'm a Maniac
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Aug 3, 2013
The Analog World
Zack’s sleep that night was shallow and restless, if you could even call it sleep at all. Fitful dreams flashed across his subconscious mind, none lingering long enough to catch more than a fleeting glimpse of anything else. Some were memories he’d prefer to have forgotten, others were sounds and sights of things that he wouldn’t recognize if he’d tried.

All of that was rendered irrelevant when he woke up, not feeling any more rested than before. A cursory glance at the digital clock next to his bed made it clear that he didn’t need to get up for the next thirty minutes, and he silently cursed as he dismissed the clock’s upcoming alarm. With nothing better to do, he slowly crawled out of bed, his bare feet protesting at the cold touch of the wooden floor.

His new room was a mess to look at, with most of his belongings in half-opened containers scattered about. His father had been sure to unpack the essentials — a desktop lamp and clock, his bed, a nightstand, his clothes, and a set of drawers to put them in — but aside from that his room was like an exhibition of cardboard boxes.

As he slowly changed out of his pajamas, into a white button-down shirt, with matching black slacks and dress shoes his father had bought for him. It wasn’t the official school uniform, but it was the closest he’d have until they provided him with one. He grabbed his old headband and tied it around his forehead, hoping that they’d allow it. His backpack lay in the corner of the room, filled with textbooks and school supplies.

Any objections he might have had to wearing a uniform were quickly silenced, as his mind wandered to the one thing that had kept him up all night.

What was with that girl yesterday? Just who WAS she?

Putting the thoughts out of his mind, Zack grabbed his digivice from his nightstand. He didn’t have a use for it anymore, but the habit of carrying it hadn’t died, and he could never quite bring himself to leave it behind. Sentimentality washed over him as his fingers slowly ran across its smooth, plastic surface, feeling the crack in its outer shell. Sighing, he placed the Digivice in his pocket, then opened the single drawer on his nightstand.

Within the drawer was an unvarnished wooden box, with the crude image of a digimon drawn on its lid: it had long rabbit-like ears, a cat-like tail, and large sharpened claws. He’d made the carving himself three years ago at summer camp, though to him it felt like an eternity ago. He carefully pried open the lid, and as it smoothly glided on its hinge, he looked inside to see its contents.

Within the box was a single deck of the Digi-Battle Card Game, bound with a worn and fraying rubber band. Next to it were three cards of bright blue, each with a single yellow “D” and the outline of a monstrous figure. He took the blue cards and held them in his hand, carefully examining them in the early morning light. Minutes passed as the memories flashed across his mind, unbound by the time that had passed.

You know, I never did figure out how these blue ones worked… ugh, what am I saying, it doesn’t even matter anymore.

With another sigh, he put the cards back in the box, and closed the lid. He wasn’t sure what compelled him to bring them along to Japan, or to keep them next to his bed. He’d considered throwing them out many times over the past three years, but for one reason or another could never get around to doing it.

A loud creak came from his bed, followed by an even louder yawn. “Morning! What’s for breakfast?”

Zack’s hair stood on end. He turned around, already dreading what he would see. What he did see only confirmed his worst fears.

“You’ve got to be kidding me.”

Veemon sat upon the bed, his lower body still draped in the sheets. “Nope! And thanks for letting me stay here for the night, uh… wait, what was your name again?”

“It’s… it’s Zack,” Zack replied, voice barely managing a stage whisper. “Veemon, just what the hell are you doing here!?”

“Sleeping in your bed, what does it look like? You’re a really heavy sleeper, you know that?”

“I barely managed to sleep at all last night!” Zack retorted. “And that doesn’t answer my question! Why are you in my room!?

“Okay, okay, calm down. I’ll tell you, sheesh.” Veemon stood up, the bed springs squeaking underneath him as he shook the sheets off of him. He hopped off of the bed, and landed onto the floor with a thump. “I just need a place to stay while I’m here. And I figure, since you’re my tamer and all, I could stay with you.”

Zack could already feel his blood pressure rising. He pressed his fingers against his forehead. “I’m not your tamer! I’m not anyone’s tamer, okay!? I don’t need a digimon partner, and I don’t want anything to do with one!”

Veemon frowned. His eyes drifted downwards, and then back to Zack. “…Still on that, huh?” he said. “Alright, I guess. That’s fine. Could at least stay here in the meantime, so I have a roof over my head? I don’t really have what you’d call a ‘home,’ per se.”

Zack paused. He inhaled sharply through his nostrils, letting the air leave through his mouth. He gave the situation careful thought, letting it linger in his mind. He didn’t want to believe the Veemon he saw yesterday was real, but now it seemed more than ever that it was. Unless he was still dreaming, in which case it didn’t matter what he said anyway.

“Fine,” he said. “You can stay.”

“Whoa! Really!?”

“Yeah,” said Zack. “Digimon aren’t supposed to exist in the real world anymore. The way I see it, if I let you out of my sight, you could just end up causing trouble for everyone. So you can stay with me, for now. Just don’t let my dad know you’re here, okay? Pretend you’re a stuffed toy or something.”

Veemon’s eyes went wide, the edges already wet with tears. “That’s… that’s the nicest thing anyone’s ever done for me! Thank you, Zack! Thank you! I promise you won’t regret it!”
“Hey, back off! Did you wash yourself last night? I’m not hugging you if you still smell like garbage!”

“Oh, yeah, totally! Did you know you can get free water from fire hydrants?”

“…I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear that.”

Before long, Zack had gone to eat breakfast, leaving Veemon behind in his room despite the small, imp-like digimon’s protests. The combination kitchen/dining room was thankfully clear enough of unpacked boxes that he could sit down at the table and eat, though the food itself was far from ideal.

“Beans and rice for breakfast?” said Zack, poking at the unfamiliar with a fork. “Seriously?”

“It’s called natto,” said Charles, sitting across from his son. “Try it! I’m sure you’ll like it.”

Zack’s nose curled up. “It smells weird. What exactly happened to good old cereal and milk, anyway?”

“Most people here are lactose intolerant,” said Charles. He reached down with his fork took a bite out of his own meal, and then continued speaking as he chewed. “Y’ll haff to g’t used t’ oth’r fud.”

“Whatever,” Zack muttered. Begrudingly, he picked up a forkful of the meal, watching the sticky strings hanging from the utensil as he lifted it to his mouth…

…It wasn’t half bad, now that he actually tried it. Not that he would ever admit it. Maybe just a few more bites…

“See?” said Charles, beaming. “Told you you’d like it!”

“Huh?” Sure enough, when Zack looked down, he saw that the unfamiliar breakfast was gone. He’d finished it off, without even realizing it. “I, uh… I think I’m going to go pack up for school now.”

Charles grinned. “Eager to start your first day of school, eh? Well, I won’t keep ya. Go ahead and get your things, I’ll meet you by the car.”

“Right. Sure. Thanks.”

It had not taken long for Zack to head back to his room, and grab his backpack. His thoughts lingered on the day ahead, dreading what would come next. His grasp of Japanese was still not as good as he’d liked, and nobody at the new school knew or cared enough about him to want to talk to him. From the eyes of every other student, he imagined, he would be the outsider.

Caught up in his ponderings, he failed to notice that Veemon was nowhere to be seen, or that his backpack had already been zipped up. It gave a mighty display of resistance has he hoisted it over his shoulders, far heavier than he would have expected it to be.

First day of my new school. Here goes nothing…