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1,000 Paper Cranes by Aurora Antheia Raine

Prologue: Broken Engagement

1,000 Paper Cranes |
| Aurora Antheia Raine | Sesshoumaru&Kagome4Ever |

Disclaimer ;; I do not own Inuyasha.

Rated ;; MA for sexual situations, language, and possible violence.

Author's Note ;; I wrote 1,000 Paper Cranes back in 2006 on A Single Spark; however, I was never able to progress very far due to school and issues I was coping with in real life. Afterwards, I fell out of writing fanfictions, but now-- I am back. I hope the story is pleasurable to read for each and every single one of you. I am always up for constructive criticism. Thank you.

Prologue: Broken Engagement

The sun was just beginning to rise over the horizon, illuminating everything in the quiet park with lush shades of pink. In the center of said park, a beautiful pond shimmered with ripples due to a gentle breeze. Upon a cobblestone bridge that arched across the pond, stood a forlorn woman with long black hair that cascaded past her shoulders.

She took a small jewelry box from her purse and sighed before she took one last look at the sparkling jewelry inside. Tears prickled her eyelids, threatening to overspill onto her porcelain-like cheeks. She blinked them back as quickly as she could. He could arrive at any given moment and she needed to be composed when he did.

Just as she closed the top of the velvet red jewelry box, she heard footsteps approaching her from behind. Forcing a smile on her face, she slipped the box back into her purse, turned around and leaned an arm casually on top of the rail.

"Sesshoumaru," she acknowledged softly, "you're here."

"Sorry, I'm late," he replied as he made his way over to the bridge, oblivious to her unusual demeanor, "it was difficult to haul a taxi this early in the morning."

He glanced around and smiled, his golden eyes twinkling with happiness as he came to a stop in front of her. Grasping her gentle and delicate hand in both of his large ones, he gazed at the beauty of the sunrise.

"What a beautiful scenery," he commented, "don't you agree?"

She could only nod in agreement as she too, looked at the beauty of nature placed before them. Tears began filling her ruby red eyes and a lump formed in her throat.

"We can do this for the rest of our lives now," he added, looking back at her, "this will continue to be our private location as it has been for the past three years. Together, until death do us part, will our love hold true."

She bit her bottom lip in silent agitation, squeezing her eyes shut for a brief moment to compose herself.

"I have something for you," he suddenly said, using one hand to retrieve a corked glass jar, while the other continued to hold her hand in his, "I spent all of last night creating it. I finished just in time to meet you here."

"You... you mean to say that you... haven't gotten any sleep?" she questioned, her eyes searching his for an answer.

He smiled at her concern. "To see your joyful face, I would sacrifice anything," he merely said, holding the jar out to her. "Within this container lies one thousand paper cranes that signifies my love for you. Even though there are not enough paper cranes in this world to show you the depth of my love... I figured one thousand would be a good start. This is my heart in which I have given you."

She took in a shaky breath and looked away, "Sesshoumaru..." she murmured as she retrieved her hand from his. "I want so much in life," she began softly. Turning to him, she smiled but it didn't quite reach her eyes, "I want to travel the world; to go to America."

"If you wish it, I will find a way to make it possible."

"You don't understand, Sesshoumaru," she replied, tears filling her eyes. "I can't wait for you to find a way."

"What--what are you insinuating?" he asked, grasping the bridge's handrail tightly with one hand to steady himself and the other held the glass jar firmly.

"You're just an executive of a small company--barely making it in life. How will you support me?" she questioned before placing a hand delicately on her stomach. "How will you support a child if I happen to conceive?"

His eyes widened. "Are you--?"

"No. No, I am not," she interrupted. She took his hand and placed the velvet box in the center of his palm, which she had retrieved from her purse just moments before. "I can't marry someone who isn't financially stable. There will be a day when love won't be enough to keep a family together. I can no longer visualize a future for the both of us."

Awkward silence descending upon them as he searched her eyes; her face; her body language, trying to distinguish if she was truly telling the truth. When he could find no traces of a lie, his smile evaporated.

"So this is it, then?" Sesshoumaru finally asked bitterly, snatching his hand away from hers as if he had been burnt, the box tumbling to the ground and landing beside his foot. "The day of our wedding and you're calling it off, suddenly deciding that I don't have enough money for you to spend? You're just going to fly off to America to find some rich man who'll satisfy your needs?"

"Sesshoumaru... I'm so sorry. Please try to understand," she pleaded to his now rigid stance. "I never meant for things to turn out this way."

"Whore," he hissed at her, fury consuming his mind as deep, excruciating pain numbed his heart. "I actually thought you cared for me; that you actually loved me. Now I see that I was just another fuck for you until you decided to move on to something with a bigger wallet."

She flinched with each sentence he spoke, feeling as though a knife had embedded itself into her heart. She tried to speak but found that she couldn't.

"You thought me a fool, didn't you?" he asked with a scornful laugh. "You had me falling in love with you so easily and you must have thought to yourself 'what an idiotic fool.' I can't believe I fell for it all."

She bit her bottom lip once more before she shook her head. "I wish you the best in life, Sesshoumaru. It is highly unlikely that we will ever meet again. You will have your life... and I will have mine," she whispered, her voice wavering.

He settled his burning gaze on her, feeling his hatred grow-- as well as his sorrow. He felt the beginning of his tears and knew that no matter what, he couldn't let her see him cry. What was left of his pride simply would not allow it.

Letting one hand go limp, the glass container slipped between his fingers and shattered, the sudden noise piercing the unearthly silence causing her to flinch yet again.

"Fuck this," he growled, "Fuck all of this. I don't need you. I don't need anyone!"

Reaching down for the jewelry box, he flipped it open angrily and took out the large engagement ring he had managed to purchase after two long years. Throwing the box carelessly to the side, he swung his arm back before propelling the ring forward with all the strength he possessed, watching as it disappeared from view.

Glaring at her one last time, Sesshoumaru walked away. 'I will never allow myself to fall in love again,' he swore to himself as tears finally began to fill his golden eyes. Tears that he had been holding back for what seemed to be an eternity. 'Never again will I show my weakness.'

She stared after him until she could no longer see his figure. As if losing all physical strength, she sank to her knees and sobbed. Suddenly remembering the paper cranes, she rushed over and collected them with care, making sure all one thousand was within her palm before carefully placing it into her purse.

Standing up and snapping her purse shut, she walked off the bridge and began to search for a glimmer in the grass. No matter what, she had to find the engagement ring. It may no longer matter to him, but it will always matter to her.

Spotting it a distance away, she ran towards it and picked it up, tears streaming down her face silently, the only sign of her own sorrow. She ran her index finger on the inside of the ring, feeling the small engraved words she had already memorized.

My love; My life; My soul; My wife, Taisho Kagura.


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- Aurora Antheia Raine


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