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Unexpected Feelings by LadyShieru

When it Breaks

Disclaimer:

I do not own Inuyasha or any of it’s characters; they belong to Takahashi Rumiko.

                                                                                            Unexpected Feelings

                                                                                                By Lady Shieru

It was early winter. The trees had just lost their leafs to fall into a deep winter sleep, saving their brilliant greens for next spring. The ever so white snow was steadily falling from the sky, giving the illusion of falling fluffy pieces of cold clouds to then settle upon each other. The snow coated the unprotected ground with a white blanket, leaving no traces of grass or flowers. The cool winter breeze danced around the slumbering trees, the peaceful silence being its dance partner. Not a single animal was visible within the black and white scenery for their daily activities shortened to slumber due to the cold temperature.

“Achoo!!”

A loud yet tiny sneeze ripped through the silence of the resting forest, the sound quickly followed by the scrunching sound of foot steps upon the snowy ground as a group of young travelers walked upon it. The group consisted of two small demons, a kitsune and a feline. Then three humans, a gentle and strangely dressed miko, a beautiful yet powerful demon huntress and a wise yet lecherous young monk. And of course, a rather temperamental yet brave (if not foolish) half demon.

“Bless you Shippo.” Came the gentle voice of the miko, her hand coming up to the small kitsune’s flushed face to offer him a handkerchief.

The demon child, currently clinging to her shoulder as he usually did during their travels, pouted weakly. His tiny hands carefully released the pink fabric of Kagome’s warm sweater to take the fluffy white cloth into his trembling hands. He blew his little nose with it, releasing a pitiful sigh as soon as he was done.

“Thangs… Gagomej…” said the kit, the plugs within his nostrils preventing him from speaking properly. The miko smiled gently at the kit, petting his red head affectionately.

The winter days had become short for the young travelers as the sun began to hide behind the icy mountains visible at the far horizon of the vast white clearing they had come across. The setting sun showering the sky with its colorful contrasts of oranges and pinks, yet again making the scenery take a beautiful and peaceful feeling. The temperature was falling, the prelude of an upcoming winter night. The kitsune child sneezed once again, the merciless cold breeze shaking the kit’s hair as it blew upon the miko he was embracing.

“It appears Shippo has a cold.” Commented Miroku worriedly to the miko walking a few steps ahead of him.

“We’ve been walking on this cold weather for quite some time now...he must be feeling terrible.” Added Sango, holding Kirara tightly against her chest.  She was walking next to the monk while caressing the feline demon’s soft mane with her delicate fingers.

Her brown eyes were gentle as she stared at the sick little demon who was seeking refuge within Kagome’s midnight hair. The miko reached up to take the kitsune into her arms, holding him against her with care and doing her best to keep the kitsune warm against her chest.

Kagome then turned her head to look at the couple walking behind her.

 “I don’t know about you guys, but I think we should stop for a break. At least for Shippo’s sake.” whispered the miko, knowing that the mentioned temperamental half demon possessed very sensitive ears.

“…I’d be vegly happy…” Shippo interviened, rubbing his teary eyes against the priestess’s chest.

The monk smiled nervously at the sight, silently wishing he were in the same position of the sick kit. The demon huntress directed a warning glare at the lecherous monk, making him look away from the ignorant miko.

“Well…we have been walking for hours now...” He whispered back, his hand going up to scratch the back of his head sheepishly under Sango's heated stare.

“I agree with you two, but do you think Mr. Thick head will let us…?” Sango's eyes fell upon the silver haired half demon’s back as he walked ahead of them, leading their way. Kirara mewed in agreement to her mistress’ statement and the humans and kitsune seemed to agree as well. At this, the four of them sighed heavily, knowing well that the half demon wouldn’t let them get their rest without putting up a fight. Especially now that they had found new leads to Naraku’s location.

“Oi, what’s all that sighin’ about? And what’re you guys doin’ standin’ there?! We have a bastard to catch so keep moving!”

The monk, the kitsune, the miko and the demon huntress turned to look at the fuming half demon that had unexpectedly approached them. The four of them looked at each other and the miko nodded her head, signaling that she would be the one to deal with their annoyed companion.

She turned to face him, giving him a look of evident determination “Inuyasha we want to take a break.” Said Kagome boldly, straight to the point. Her tone and words made the half demon instantly direct his golden glare at her ocean blue eyes.

“What?! We don’t have time for breaks!” shouted Inuyasha, his glare shifting from the miko to the others and then back at the miko.

“Inuyasha! We’ve been walking for hours, it’s freezing and Shippo’s sick! We must take a break!” Kagome snapped back as she leaned forward to glare deeper into Inuyasha’s angry eyes.

“I don’t give a rat's ass if that brat is sick or not!” he retorted, turning around drastically to give his back to her and the others. “ I ain’t gonna stop and let that bastard escape again!” he stubornly resumed his walk with his arms crossed over his chest in an arrogant manner.

“Inuyasha you jerg!!” Shippo growled weakly at the irritating half demon’s retreating back. Miroku and Sango looked at each other, each expecting what was to come next. The feline demon mewed in anticipation.

The miko’s eyebrow twitched in anger, her eyes closed as if to try to calm herself “You don’t care huh…?” she said, her voice dangerously low. “Inuyasha…!”

“What-?!” came the half demon’s unfinished reply, the miko interrupting him with the angry words that suddenly escaped her mouth.

“SIT!!”

The snow resting upon the leafless tree tops tumbled down to the ground. Some slumbering animals awoke and quickly fled from their hiding spots around the vicinity. Quiet birds took flight, startled as a loud CRASH echoed through the empty corners of the clearing and then everything became silent once again.

A thin layer of snow dust that had formed before the angry miko cleared slowly, revealing a perfectly body shaped crater.

The now calm miko approached the funny looking crater, a laughing kitsune clinging to her chest in an attempt to control the incessant coughing that was ruining his laughing session. Kagome looked down within the crater.

 “May we rest now Inuyasha?” she questioned to it’s depths with a sympathetic look upon her face, a low growl was heard from the crater as reply.

“Thank youuuu.” Kagome chirped, leaving the half demon struggling to rise up from his little snowy prison as she turned on her heel with a pleased smile.

------------------------------------------------------

Night soon fell, an immense dark curtain covering the blue sky to allow the bright orbs of the firmament to shine upon the cold grounds. The group had decided to camp within that clearing, avoiding the lurking shadows of the frozen forest and embracing the open and secure space of the clearing.

 Inuyasha had settled himself in the heights of a leafless tree near the camp side, keeping watch for any possible threat while releasing random colorful words to himself in irritation. His arms remained crossed over his chest stubbornly.

 The three humans were sitting one next to the other next to the fire, keeping themselves warm. Shippo was wrapped up in a ball, covered almost completely by a warm shirt of Kagome’s as he sat upon her lap watching the fire dance before him.

“ Inuyasha, would you stop acting like a brat? Come join us!” Kagome yelled at the red spot within the tree tops just behind them. Receiving a “Keh” and a clear view of his long silver hair as he gave his back to her.

“He’s still angry.” She informed, turning her attention to the couple sitting next to her.

“Humph cough it was his own fault gat Gagomej had to sit him…” commented Shippo, his eyes crossing as a spoon with a red liquid appeared in his line of vision.

“uhg…” let out the kitsune, squirming away from the spoon, his instincts telling him that whatever the miko was offering him it wouldn’t taste good. Kagome’s arm wrapped around the kitsune’s small body, keeping him still.

“Now Shippo this will make you feel better, so drink up.” She said, her gentle words sounding more like an order. “B-But-mgh!“

“I know we have a very important lead to where Naraku is but we wont be able to fight him if we’re tired.” Sango's slender fingers scratched behind the cat demon’s ears while she spoke.

“Indeed my dear Sango, your beauty and knowledge is astonishing as always.” The monk looked her over, an innocent smile adorning his face.

"You’d better pull away that hand before you loose it…your Excellency.” Suggested or rather warned the huntress, glaring at the monk from the corner of her eyes.

Miroku pulled his hand away from the conveniently close huntress’ rear as if he had been burned, knowing fully well what the huntress was capable of.

“My dear Sango how can you think of me in such a way! It is cold out here, I merely wanted to give you warmth.” Said the monk, a hurt look replacing his innocent smile. Kagome and Shippo rolled their eyes at this.

Sango huffed “Well keep your warmth to yourself.” She said coldly, looking away.

Kagome smiled at the couple and at the laughing kitsune on her lap as a couple of giggles escaped her. I don’t want anything to tear them away from me, my friends, my family. Her eyes grew distant as she watched the usual display of Sango slapping the lecherous monk; the kitsune laughing incessantly and the half demon. Whom remained perched up in the heights of a tree, keeping watch to protect the ones dear to him.

- - - - - - - - ------ - - - - - - - -

The hours passed like that. The group  sharing the usually short peaceful times to construct happy memories for a life time and have the stars record them in their eternal book of history. After many laughter and dinner each retired to the dream land, gathering as much energy as it was possible to have enough strength to defeat the hardships stored for each one of them in the next day. The camp fire was still burning brightly, giving it’s heat to the humans slumbering near it and giving light to the dark corner of the empty clearing.

The miko was sleeping in her usual sleeping bag as she always did every time they were without a roof to sleep under. The kitsune was cradled in her arms, shielding himself from the merciless low temperature of the winter night. The huntress and the monk were sleeping across from the miko and kitsune, hugging one another and leaning against the tree nearest to the fire.

A sound coming from where the half demon was perched upon made the miko open her blue eyes to look up at where Inuyasha used to be. She frowned when she found the spot empty, the branch still swaying slightly.

"Inuyasha?” she called, her voice low and confused.

What could have made him abandon his watch post in such a hurry? She couldn’t answer herself that. Her curiosity was poking the back of her mind forcefully, making her body almost move on it’s own will. Kagome rose slowly and silently as to not wake the rest of her companions, pushing the slumbering kitsune deeper into the sleeping bag to compensate for the loose of her body heat.

She crouched then, keeping her movements as silent as possible as her fingers searched the snowy ground. She searched for the smooth yet hard surface of her wooden bow that had sunk under the thickness of the snow. After finding the weapon she slid her arm through the strap of her back pack and picked it up, figuring it could be a good idea to keep the back pack with her in case it was needed. As soon as Kagome took a step away from the camp, the cutting chilling breeze touched the skin of her unprotected legs, making a shudder run up her legs and back.

  Great. What the hell was I thinking when I put on the school uniform this morning?…ugh…at least I have my sweater. She hugged her weapon against her chest as she proceeded to walk, following the half demon’s distinctive aura.

"I wonder what’s gotten into him? Leaving like that." she whispered to herself, glaring here and there as the moving shadows of the trees around her began to play with her still drowsy head. She knew she was not to feel fear for Inuyasha was still very near her, she knew that if something were to try to take her life, the half demon would quickly kill it and take her back to safety. So she ignored the threatening feeling and continued her walk.

Seconds, then minutes passed and the miko was beginning to think she had confused his aura with another’s and had gotten herself lost. Then the whispering voices made her stop and her heart jumped a beat.

Her blue eyes traveled from ahead to her left, the bluish glow of a white demon that hovered near her lighting the dark trees into a gentle blue. Those are… The little miko’s heart gave out a painful beat yet again as she began to approach the source of the glow. The white snake demon flew deeper between a pair of trees, carrying a glowing white orb within it’s short claws. The miko followed silently, watching the snake-looking creature float between two trees to join the source of a much brighter glow. Kagome’s heart sank slowly as she approached, hiding behind one of the trees to listen to the whispers of two beings standing in the middle of various floating demons.

Kikyo… the name of her passed self. The name of the dead woman that was currently speaking with Inuyasha so lovingly came to the young miko’s mind, her blue eyes saddening as she listened.

“Inuyasha, do you still wish to go with me?” came her low voice, void of the young and innocent happiness Kagome possessed. Her dark, wise blue eyes pierced through the fierce gold of the half demon as she stared deep into them. Her pale arms rising to rest around Inuyasha’s neck.

“I promised…I guess I have to keep my word.” He replied, his eyes saddening as he stared at her pale yet beautiful face. His golden eyes reflected nothing but regret, pain and sadness

. He knew from the beginning that one of the two girls he cared for would have to end up suffering. He wished for nothing else than to avoid that, to avoid hurting them. He knew which of the two was going to suffer too, yet he knew that he had to keep his promise with his first love. She deserved the chance to be with him for Naraku had stolen it from her, from both of them. I’m so sorry Kagome... The sadness, the pain and regret quickly combined to rest upon his eyes as guilt.

“I shall make you forget so you may fight with me against the one that tore us apart my love. And then you shall come with me to hell without regrets or ill memories.” the dead woman whispered, smiling weakly at him and his eyes widened at her words.

Kagome couldn’t take more of their conversation, her eyes were burning with unshed tears and she was fighting hard to keep them at bay. The young miko looked away from the couple, leaning her back against the trunk of the tree. I thought she had given up on him...I thought she was going to leave us be! But it seems not even Inuyasha can reject her or keep her away from us. She thought, her gentle hands closing into trembling fists.

“Kikyo! Wha-!”

Kagome’s eyes snapped open, the alarmed shout of Inuyasha drawing her from her painful thoughts. The girl quickly turned to look at the couple, her eyes widening at the sight. The woman that had said she loved the half demon was stabbing him in the gut with a short, glowing knife. Thick drops of his blood falling and staining the white snow before his feet. His wide eyes bore deeply into the miko’s in shock, his mouth open yet no sound was coming out.

“It is for you’re own good Inu-“

“Inuyasha!!” called the miko from the future, horror filling her usually gentle voice as she ran into the scene.

“Seize her.” Ordered the miko, who’s hand was dripping blood as she motioned for her demons to stop the other.

The white serpents hovered to the running girl with impressive speed, wrapping their bodies around her slender frame and successfully disabling her from walking a step. The girl began to struggle against their tight hold upon her legs and arms, tears running down her flushed cheeks.

“No! Let go!” she yelled in protest, rising her head to look at Kikyo and glaring at her through tearful eyes. “Kikyo! Why did you-!!?”

“Don’t be foolish impudent girl, demons cannot die by a mere stab.” Interrupted the dead priestess, pulling out the knife from Inuyasha’s body. The half demon remained arched forward, his eyes wide and unaware of the other girl’s presence or of what was happening around him. He did not move, he did not speak, he remained idle as the blood slowly stopped dripping.

“Wha…Inuyasha!! Inuyasha say something!” Kagome tried desperately to move, to reach for him, to go to him. The demons were keeping an iron grip upon her, so strong her limbs were beginning to ache. The half demon however, did not respond, he did not even spare a glance at her. He was completely ignoring her.

“What did you do to him Kikyo?!” she demanded, stopping her struggle and settling to glare heatedly at the smirking woman.

“It is merely an enchantment used to subdue demons and enslave them. I did this for his own good, Kagome.” She explained, speaking to her as if she were a five year old child.

“What? Why would that be for his own good, you witch!? You wont be allowing him the right to make his own decisions! That’s not love Kikyo!” snapped Kagome, her tears completely forgotten.

“Inuyasha chose to follow me to hell. To remain with me. I am sure you heard him.” She said, almost tauntingly while watching Kagome’s angry eyes become pained.

“I know he does not want to hurt you. He feels guilty because he knows you will suffer after we depart. So I merely made things easier for him. Now we go and defeat Naraku…” she continued, walking around the straightening half demon. His eyes were void of their usual lively shine. “…and then we go together to hell. He will be under this spell all the time so that he may never feel guilt or sadness towards you.” She then smiled at the half demon as he turned around to embrace her.

Kagome’s heart sank deep. He ignores her existence now. He knows not her name anymore. He chose the dead over the living and all that she had done had been for him. Years of fights and wounds for him, yet that was his way to repay her…giving up his heart to a dead woman instead of to herself.

Kagome remained there, watching the pair without uttering a word and feeling betrayed and rejected. Why Inuyasha? she whispered those words in her mind, not finding the strength to mouth them.

“My re-incarnation, you are no longer needed here.” Said Kikyo, turning to face the hurting miko with slight sympathy reflected in her blue eyes. “Go back to your time period and continue living your normal life with your loved ones.” She took a few steps towards her, studying the other miko's pained expression.

Kagome’s eyes widened “What are you going to...“ she managed to say, her voice weak and broken.

Kikyo’s blood stained fingers came to wrap around the necklace around Kagome’s neck, snatching it away along with the half formed shikon jewel.

“Forget everything that happened in this time and go to where you belong. From now on, everything shall be as it should.” Finished the miko, nodding her head at her faithful servants.

“W-wait!” cried Kagome, alarmed. The demons began to pull her up with them, slowly floating up into the sky. “INUYASHA!”

“NO!” She screamed, her tears flowing out as she watched how Inuyasha’s form seemed to shrink more and more as she flew farther away from him, from her love and from her friends.

------------…-----------

“Look Master Jaken!!”

Why!? Why do I always have to baby-sit this human girl! Were the thoughts of the imp.

It was beyond him. His small brain had yet to understand why his powerful and icy lord had allowed a human girl to follow him around. Adding to their journey more obstacles and annoyances. It is true he had already grown slightly attached to the little girl though. Jaken had before risked his life for the human. He had played along her little games and allowed her to adorn his small body with countless flowers that not only made him sneeze but usually left a sickening girlish smell upon him.

It was not that he couldn’t stand the little girl that he was so confused as to the demon lord’s actions, after all, she had somehow turned into family to him. It was due to the fact that Sesshomaru hated humans that his mind was so troubled.

He remembered how his lord used to say that the weak race was a pest. A bother. A species that was not meant to live at all. Insects that did nothing but occupy space and multiply to occupy even more space.

Now it was hard for the imp to figure out what the demon lord was to do if something was to happen to the girl currently rummaging through a bush of wild berries.

He sighed.

 He’d surely cut me in half.

“Master Jaken, these are really good! Here, have some!” chirped the cheerful Rin. Her wide brown eyes settled upon the imp standing in front of her, her small hands reaching out and holding a small bunch of round purple fruits upon her palms.

Despite the cold weather, she was happy. Acting as if it were a regular summer day due to the warm kimonos her lord had brought for her to warm her small body along with a pair of sandals to protect her feet from the cold snow beneath them.

“Ugh Rin just hurry up! Lord Sesshomaru will be angry if we don’t go back soon!” snapped Jaken carelessly, not wanting to face the dog demon’s glare.

Rin just smiled at him, giving a quick ‘Kay’ to the little imp she had grown to respect so much before turning to continue her task. The child then began to hum a song as her small fingers picked the berries to place them upon her palm. Jaken rolled his eyes at the annoying sound.

Jaken sighed yet again, boredom filling his face How much longer will she take picking berries?! as those thoughts crossed the imp’s mind a small yellow orb emerged from within the bushes to his right. It slowly floated by the Imp’s face while Jaken followed it slowly with his big, bored eyes. He  watched the firefly’s body fly innocently, his heart stopping for an instant as soon as he saw the little creature approach Rin’s hair. Oh no!!

“Pretty!!” came the excited voice of the human child, who completely released the berries to jump enthusiastically at the firefly.

Even though she failed to capture it, Rin kept trying with the same determination she had the first time. She followed the small shining insect deeper into the woods, completely ignoring a certain toad’s desperate voice.

“Rin!! Stop!” he yelled, trying to keep up with her as he followed, his short feet making it hard for him to reach her.

She had giggled, her ears seemed completely deaf as she gave into the distraction. Jumping some roots, running through bushes and jumping from time to time to catch the glowing orb. She was oblivious to the fact that every time she did so, she was running farther and farther from her caretaker and her babysitter.

Jaken’s little legs gave out as he tripped. A small frustrated sound soon followed which was muffled by the soft snow as his face lied upon it. The imp quickly lifted himself from the cold ground, his strange hands closing tightly in anger.

“That stupid girl!!” he had yelled in frustration, pulling himself up suddenly and stomping the ground with his feet “All she does is get me into trouble!!” he yelled again, continuing his beating upon the ground.

Then his face changed from anger to fear. The green creature swallowed hard as he froze still, his foot up in the air and ready to inflict harm upon the soft snow beneath it. His head slowly turned to look behind him. His wide eyes fell upon a pair of black boots, then white prestine silk, black bone armor, and then those cold golden eyes.

----…-----

Kagome opened her eyes slowly to see darkness and barely visible snow as she lied upon it. For a moment she couldn’t remember where she was or what had happened yet then the memories quickly fell upon her mind, weighting down like a ton of metal.

She sighed painfully, settling to calm her aching heart and glance at her surroundings. More of the dark, snowy forest greeted her. Her friends were no longer near and she had no one to protect her or keep her company. She was alone and there was not a wooden well in sight.

Why am I here?I thought they would take me to the well. She wondered, slowly rising to her feet. Strange…why do I feel so wore down… It's as if I ran for days. She felt puzzled as she looked down at herself.

The sudden sound of a tree branch falling next to her quickly drew her out of her thoughts, making her take a step back.

A tree branch?

She instinctively looking up from the object on the ground to the tree tops above. More of those small tree branches were snapped broken, waiting for gravity to draw them down.

 “…That means I fell? No wonder I was unconscious.” She told herself, frowning at the height. The fact that she was alive and with barely a few scratches here and there surprised her to no end.

With nothing more to investigate above the miko looked around, her mind racing as she thought of what to do next and where to go.

Inuyasha chose her…so…No. He didn’t do it willingly! I have to go back and stop her! I have to help my friends and Inuyasha! Determination replaced her pained eyes only to be changed into ones of disappointment when she realised the situation she was in.

But how am I going to go back if I don’t even know where I am? she sighed in frustration. Well I can’t do anything standing here, I’ll have to walk and trust my senses...but maybe I should go to the nearest village first to at least figure out exactly where I am. She concluded, nodding as she began to walk.

But how strange, why did they drop me here? Her eyes focused ahead of her as she searched for any unfriendly tree root or stone that could make her trip.

About an hour passed as she walked and she was beginning to think she was walking around in circles.

 “Grr!! That Kikyo! Now I hate her more than I did before!” she shouted to the nothingness, irritation filling every inch of her voice as she stomped her way through the forest. Her angry eyes looked around to spot any resemblance that could alert her if she was circling or if she was indeed going somewhere. Perhaps she was becoming paranoid due to her lack of sight thanks to the night.

 More trees and more bushes, more snow and then a clearing.

Kagome stepped out of the forest and into the gap of plain snow, looking around.

 "This isn’t the clearing we were using to camp." she realized, her eyes closing as she released yet another sigh. "This has to be a nightmare."

 Tears quickly threatened to flow out, making the young woman blink them in, fighting them off. "No. I wont give her the pleasure." She murmured forcefully, rubbing the tears off her eyes forcefully.

“Stop!! Let Rin catch you!” Came a familiar child’s voice.

Kagome’s eyes widened as she watched the little girl appear from some place within the forest and run to the empty clearing, following a glowing dot.

"R-Rin?" she blinked at the cheerful child playing quite far from her in the middle of the clearing.

Kagome remained in the edge of the forest, watching the child. "Then if Rin is here that means Sesshomaru is somewhere close by." she looked around for any sign of the demon lord, yet the darkness wasn’t allowing her a glimpse into the forest.

She waited patiently for the dog demon or the toad that accompanied him to appear. The minutes passed yet nothing. It was strange, so she thought as she stared at the child. She was now now looking around with the glowing orb between her hands, a worried frown displaying in her cute features.

 "Then she’s alone?" Kagome concluded, growing worried for the child’s well being. "But why would Sesshomaru leave her alone like this?"

"Maybe I should help her out, I can’t just leave her here like that." She told herself quietly, smiling gently as she approached the girl. She stopped behind the distracted child, who seemed to be more worried about where she was than for what was happening around her.

“Hi Rin.”

The little girl jumped, a gasp escaping her mouth. Kagome watched how the little girl quickly turned around, her eyes wide with fear.

“Don’t you remember me?” Kagome questioned, her eyes gentle and slightly sad as she leaned forward. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to scare you." Placing her hands upon her knees to be at the same eye level as the little child, she gave her an apologetic smile.

Rin’s eyes quickly shone with realization, a wide smile forming on her lips. “Kagome!” she addressed the miko, forgetting the insect within her hands as she threw her arms around the young woman’s neck in a gentle hug. The firefly quickly flew off as soon as it was released.

Kagome’s blue eyes widened slightly at the sudden reaction of the little girl. She’s so cute. She thought, smiling at little girl’s hair as she patted her back affectionately.

“I’m glad you remember, Rin. What are you doing out here alone? Where’s Sesshomaru?” Kagome gently pulled away from the little girl’s embrace to look at her, her hands resting upon the child’s shoulders.

Kagome watched how the happy look upon the Rin’s eyes quickly faded, replaced by guilt and sadness. “Rin is lost…” answered the little girl.

“Lost?” the miko repeated, puzzled.

“Rin followed the shiny fly and didn’t realize Rin had gone far from Master Jaken and now Rin doesn’t know where she is.” She explained the older girl, her eyes growing tearful as she spoke.

Kagome’s heart melted at the little girl’s expression, her hand going up to gently stroke the child’s dark brown hair. “It’s ok Rin, I’ll help you find your way back ok?”

Great Kagome, how are you going to do that when you can’t even find your own way back? she smacked herself mentaly, her smile turning into a nervous one.

“Really?!” Chirped the girl, her eyes regaining their cheery look.

“Uh-of course!” replied Kagome.

Rin jumped happily. “Ok Kagome! Rin will go ahead!” said the child, running a few steps towards the forest  She couldn’t go far for the miko’s hand shot forward to hold the child’s arm, stopping her and making her look up at the older girl with wide eyes flled with confussion.

“Rin…wait.” The miko hushed gently, pulling the girl behind her. “There’s a demon near.” She informed the kid, her bow sliding down her arm to rest upon her hand as her other hand went up to pull an arrow from the quiver.

“Demon?” questioned the little girl, her eyes brightening “It must be Lord Sesshomaru!” she said enthusiastically. Then she ran off, giggling cheerfully with her arms spread to her sides.

“No Rin!! That’s not-“

The miko’s voice was suddenly muffled by a loud growl that broke through the edge of the forest and echoed through the clearing. Rin’s eyes widened in fear as a dark, long tail suddenly broke out of the trees and wrapped itself around her small frame with a speed that only a demon could muster. Rin’s fear quickly reached it's limits when the head of the demon came into her view, her scream reaping through the silence of the cold forest.

----…-----

“L-Lord S-Sesshomaru!!” The imp’s reaction was instantaneous. In a flash of green he turned to face his lord, prostrating before the demon lords' feet and bowing his green head down to the point of repeatedly kissing the snowy ground. I’mdeadI’mdeadI’mdead-

“Jaken.” His smooth yet icy voice halted the imp’s performance, yet again freezing the toad in the spot.

“Y-yes m-milord??” squeaked the imp, not daring to look up at his lords' angry eyes.

“I see that once again you have failed.” Said Sesshomaru, pinning the annoying green toad with his golden glare.

“M-my apologies Lord S-Sesshomaru! B-but Rin didn’t listen!! I told her to stop and-“

“I have no interest in your pathetic excuses Jaken.” Sesshomaru interrupted coldly, making the imp flinch. The foolish toad, as always, served as nothing more than a nuisance. It could never do anything right and always made up endless excuses to justify its own faults.

Sesshomaru had to question himself why he kept the imp alive in the first place. Why he was able to stand endless squawking and constant complaints. Perhaps it was worth keeping the imp for stress relieve. After all, a quick stone throw or an occasional kick could indeed work wonders for anyone.

“Go find her before I have you sent to your kin in shreds.” Sesshomaru narrowed his eyes at the frightened imp, showing him that he meant every word within his promise of death.

“Y-Yes Milord!” Jaken squwaked, again performing his bowing ritual.

The familiar scream suddenly crashed upon both the lord and the servant’s ears. Jaken jolted up in alarm, his small heart racing.

“R-Rin!” he called, his grip upon the staff of two heads faltering. A flash of white made the imp react instantly, his small arms shooting out to grab the fluff boa of his lord as he passed the imp with demonic speed.

----….----

Kagome’s hands worked out of reflex. She nudged the arrow and aimed it directly at the demon’s tail, which was currently circling the monster to allow it to have Rin right in front of it’s mouth.

“Let her go!” she ordered threateningly before releasing the arrow, completely focused on hitting the demon.

 The sharp flying object landed directly in the demon’s tail, the purifying power piercing through it and cutting barely half of his tail off and allowing Rin to fall to the soft snow. The child didn’t spare a moment before lifting herself up to run back towards the mikos protection, hiding herself behind the young womans legs.

“Are you ok Rin?!” Kagome asked, not taking her glare from the demons form as it growled out in agony.

“Yes Rin is ok!” replied the little girl, holding the rim of the miko’s skirt to let her know she was still next to her.

The two human girls took several steps back as the demon emerged from the dark forest, the moon revealing its true appearance. Darkly scaled body that reflected the gentle blues of the moonlight; strong front legs and hind legs which muscles could be easy seen contracting as the beast moved towards them and a head with the appearance of a lion’s yet with no hair but scaled.

“How dare you wench!” the beast growled, leaving a trail of blood as it approached.

Kagome nudged another arrow, determined to protect the little girl. “What? You thought I’d sit still and let you kill her?!” questioned the miko, waiting patiently for the right moment to fire.

“Well sorry! If you want her you’ll have to kill me first!” she yelled, defying the demon who growled in anger at the mikos' interference.

The demon was dangerously close to them now and they were slowly being cornered against the other side of the clearing. If they were to reach the edge of the forests it would be hard to move about and avoid the demons massive claws.

Then it hit her. The aura of a strong demon approaching rapidly. An aura she could recognize.

He’s coming.

Her eyes remained fixed upon the red ones of the beast before her, which was growling angrily at her. It stood there waiting for the miko to lower her defenses to strike.

Kagomes mind raced, searching for a way to allow Rin to run away without being harmed by the demon. Her eyes moved from the arrow to the demons face.

 It will take a couple arrows to finish this one off. But if I hit it square between the eyes I can maybe…

Her eyes hardened with determination.

“Rin I want you to run left as soon as I tell you, alright?” said Kagome, her eyes narrowing.

"O-ok.” replied the girl, swallowing hard.

”You cannot escape!” it growled, taking a step back when the arrow pointed at his head began to glow a light pink.

“Now!” Kagome yelled, firing the purifying arrow at the demon’s head. As soon as the arrow left the bow Rin sprinted towards the direction the older girl had mentioned. Her little heart was beating rapidly as she approached edge of the forest.

Kagomes eyes widened as the demons complete body loomed above her. It continued to growl as the arrows glow died within its head before the beast swiftly moved to chase after the little girl, completely forgetting the miko’s presence as it became blind with pain and furry.

“No Rin!!” Kagome frantically followed the demon, dropping her giant back pack and bow as she sprinted pass the berserk beast and towards the little girl. Rin stopped to watch in horror how the beast approached her. Its mouth full of sharp fangs opening wide and announcing the prelude to her demise as they had to many others. Rins' vision was suddenly blocked by pink and green as the miko pushed the child away. Rin felt herself falling back unto the soft snow, wide eyed at to what happened next.

The sound of flesh being tore and blood was all Rin was able to hear and see, her eyes watering at the familiar sight.

Kagome was forced to move her head to the side as she felt the demons' fangs cut through the fragile skin of her left shoulder and arm. Its reasonably big mouth closed with such force that the miko was left breathless. Kagomes' vision went blank the instant her blood splattered the white snow beneath her. And then she stood there, frozen. The demon’s clawed paw held her pinned to the spot and her legs shook with the weight.

Sesshomarus' golden eyes watched stoicly the scene as he and his retainer came to a sudden halt. His clawed hand, which had been tightly holding his sword Toukijin, was now loosening its grip upon it.

 He was wordless, he had seen it all from afar. Jaken, who had been clinging to his boa for dear life a while back was now walking a few steps forward. His already wide eyes, widening more as he recognize the person who had just saved the child.

“Kagome!!!” cried his lords' ward, confirming the imps' suspicions.

“Inuyashas' wench?” were his shock tainted words.

Kagome could feel her blood zip through her pink sweater and skirt as it slid down her back and left arm. The red liquid leaking down to the snow to create a small puddle that was to be absorbed by the cold ground. The blinding pain was keeping her from screaming, from moving.

“The blood of a miko…tastes so much better than that of a child.” she had heard the demon growl into her shoulder, feeling it swallow her liquid as if it were whine. “I shall eat you in her stead, maiden.” it had said, ignoring the pressence of the demon lord and retainer. It then deepened its' fangs into her flesh and that was when she found her voice to scream.

“No!!” Rin yelled in alarm. She lifted herself up in an attempt to rush forward to help her savior yet the imp quickly stopped her, holding her hand tightly with both of his. “Foolish child stop!”

Sesshomarus' hand darted to the swords' hilt as he was determined to kill off the demon yet he was not allowed to take a single step forward for the miko suddenly began to glow.

Kagomes' eyes went blank as the burning power within her surfaced. Her hair rose up with the sudden outburst of pink waves that surrounded her. The demons' red eyes narrowed at human girls' reaction, faltering from releasing her or to devour her for good.

Sesshomarus' eyes widened at the sudden display of power the human girl was giving, more power than he had ever seen coming from her in the past. Jaken cowered away, dragging Rin with him as the purifying energy made his small body begin to burn slightly even from afar.

Kagome’s right hand slowly rose to touch the demons' head. The beast didn’t even have the chance to growl in pain as it turned into thin ash in a fraction of a second, the dust floating away with the cool breeze of the night. She stood there, her hand slowly lowering to her side before releasing a pained breath. She then collapsed, her blood forming a pool beneath her.

“such power…!” Jaken exclaimed, shock evident in every inch of his features.

“Kagome!” Rin Pulled her hand out the imps' and ran towards the bleeding miko. Jaken’s eyes cough white as Sesshomaru walked pass him, following closely behind the little girl .

”L-Lord Sesshomaru?” the imp looked up at his Lords' back, puzzled.

Rin knelt next to Kagome, her small hands touching the mikos' now pale face. “Kagome?” whispered the little girl, a sob breaking her words. “Please…wake up…” she pleaded.

“Rin.”

Rin’s eyes widened, her tearful gaze falling upon her lords' stoic features. She bowed her head, tears dripping down to the ground. “Please…please save Kagome Lord Sesshomaru.” his ward whimpered, begging for his help while her soft hands stroked the mikos' midnight hair.

Sesshomaru could hear her breathing. Faint and broken; her heart beat was slow and irregular. She was bleeding dangerously fast. If she was left here she would die a slow death.

 And why should he care?

The woman was his enemy, she was his half brothers' miko. She had disrespected him, she had defied him and she had interfiered with his plans so many times before.

 He now wondered why he hadn't killed her yet. Had he developed some form of respect towards her?  Perhaps because of her defying nature he had grown to slightly ‘respect’ the human woman enough to acknowledge her. Never before had a being dared to stand up to him like this girl had in the past.

Yes, perhaps slight respect was all there was. Enough to bother to remember her name.

But he eyed his wards' pleading eyes one more time. He would not do this for the human girl, he would do this for the child. Even thought he considered the woman a powerful being she was still his enemy. Nothing would change that.

The demon lord stepped closer to the fallen miko. He knelt upon one knee next to his ward, whos eyes looked gratefuly at him. Sesshomarus' only arm reached out and around the mikos' waist to gently pull her up, laying her over his shoulder slowly.

Jaken gasped at his Lords' actions, his short legs taking him to his side in haste. “L-Lord Sesshomaru…W-wha-“

“Jaken.” Interrupted Sesshomaru, glaring at the imp as if daring him to protest, or worse, question him. The imp wisely shut his mouth and waited for his command. “See to the mikos' belongings.” Sesshomaru ordered, striding pass the imp while Rin followed close behind him.

The imp nodded and sprawled towards Kagomes' back pack, taking one of its' straps between his hands and pulling the giant back with him.

 “Oh dear! What does that wench carry in here anyway!?” Jaken complained, dragging the bag behind him along with the bow.

Sesshomaru could already feel her blood zipping through his furry boa and sleeve, threatening to reach his own skin. He held back a small growl at this. He would have to bath as soon as they reach camp to wash away the mikos' smell from his clothes.

But what was bugging him was not the fact that he was actually carrying the girl, it was more as to how things had turned out to be like this. Why had the girl been there alone without anyone, not even Inuyasha, to help her?

Where were you Inuyasha? he wondered, his eyes narrowing in suspicion.

 He knew Inuyasha’s forest was far away ans that there was no one related to the human girl near by. So she had just suddenly appeared there, traveling alone? Something great must have happened between this girl and her companions that forced her to separate from them. And then that outburst of power she displayed earlier, she would have to explain everything if she survives.

You have better not die miko for we have much to discuss.

Thank you all for reading and if you liked the story please review!

 

INUYASHA © Rumiko Takahashi/Shogakukan • Yomiuri TV • Sunrise 2000
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