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Not Impervious by Oroyukae

Sudden Winter's Chill

Shivering, Kagome threw yet another piece of kindling upon the tiny ineffective fire that she had managed to start in order to try and stave off the blustering cold from the storm raging outside. Unfortunately though, the kindling was still too green and failed to catch as well as she would have liked for it to. All the kindling that she had been able to gather was exactly the same way; which prevented her fire from burning anywhere close to productively. Sighing, she gazed around her once more, having done so numerous times since entering the rather cramped space that would be her home for the night at least. The girl was ever so certain that her closet at home was significantly larger than the place she was now, for here she barely had room to stand upright; however, it had been the best she could find under the circumstances and it was far better than wandering around outside in the storm, trying to find her friends.

They had become separated when the storm hit and now she was, yet again, rendered lost. One would think that after three and a half years of running around feudal era Japan's countryside that she would be able to find her way...yeah, right. As it was, she had no clue how to find her comrades; which she was positive would come looking for her once the weather broke. Oh, just the thought of the tongue lashing that she would receive from Inuyasha over this made her cringe; that guy never failed to make her feel inept about how he always had to come and 'rescue' her. Hell, if the truth be known, the guy enjoyed it, for he never failed to get a prideful gleam in his eyes upon saving her from danger. Until then, until they found her, she was determined to do what she could to get through; her backpack had fallen and much of the contents had been lost, but she was not completely without some provisions. Her bedroll became her most valued possession at that very second, for she would need it in order to try and get some rest later. A crossword puzzle book successfully kept her from going insane as she listened to the howling fury of the winds outside her shelter, her frustrations with the harder ones only helped to warm her as it made her heart rate increase a smidgeon or two. Yes, she would be just fine; there was absolutely nothing for her to worry about whatsoever…right?

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'Cursed wretch,' the demon silently groused inside his mind, 'she should have known better than to make such an outlandish request. Now she has a childish tantrum in a pitiful attempt to force this Sesshoumaru into agreement? Let her rant until all the lands are a frozen and barren wasteland, for I shall never acquiesce.'

The sting of the tiny frozen droplets was like a thousand pins pricking his face all at once, causing more than mild discomfort to his near frozen person. His wet clothing stuck to his flesh quite painfully and Sesshoumaru honestly regretting the loss of his protective armor, as well as that of his moko. It had been necessary though, his leaving those items behind as he did; there had been very little time and he had been caught undeniably, and quite shamefully, indisposed. If he had tarried, it would have been very well likely that he would at that moment be forever bound to that vile female that sought to become the Lady of the West. The loathsome bitch. How foolish he had been for daring to consider her offer for a meaningless rut; he should have known that the sorceress was up to something, but it had been a long time since he had even had an opportunity and he could not deny that he had started to feel the need...He was male for god's sake and as such he too was prone to urges involving the flesh. Oh, he was able to repress them for longer periods of time than most males could, but even he had a limit as to how long he could go without.

As it turned out, this sorceress seemed most adequate...until she tried to bespell him; tried being the operative word, for she had not been able to complete the process. Thankfully his mind had been able to somewhat right itself before any real damage had been done and he put as much distance between the sorceress and himself; hence the loss of his expensive armor and his moko too. Hopefully, that beast had seen no use for his belongings and simply left them there in the glen; if so, he could return and collect them later. If not...well, the female would not enjoy the consequences of him having to hunt her down in order to reclaim his possessions.

Whatever had made that wretched, pathetic excuse for a female think, for even a second, that she was worthy of being his mate and Lady was beyond him. Such a renowned and exalted station required a female above reproach, one of impeccable standards and exemplary stature; all of which that bitch was not. It never ceased to amaze him,  the trouble that the simple need for a fierce rut could bring about. Sadly though, even a being of his caliber was not impervious to such; he too had certain primal needs that had to be catered to and met every now and again.

The Daiyoukai could not be entirely certain, but he believed that the sorceress had in fact uttered a curse upon him as he retreated. Normally, he would not have been concerned about it, for he was a demon of high rank; his level of power unsurpassed, but that female was of immense power too. That could pose a potential problem; one that he could not, and should not, ignore. The sound of that vile woman's whispering voice echoing upon the wind haunted him, although he could not make out all of what she had said; he had been far more concerned with simply distancing himself from the sorceress in order to clear his still lust filled mind. In after thought, perhaps it was not entirely the wisest of decisions he had made in ignoring her mutterings; such would have proven quite valuable information to have right about this time.

A particularly vicious chill ran through him and the demon found himself unable to prevent the violent shudder that resulted. How peculiar; he had never suffered such before, being mostly impervious to the elements in the past. Sesshoumaru deduced his reaction to be a direct result of losing moko, for the massive furry thing usually kept him quite warm; still though, it was most perplexing.

Lifting his head he Daiyoukai made an attempt to scent his surroundings that he may have an idea as to his exact location. The weather, paired with the lingering effects of whatever that bitch had burned to disorient him, had forced him to into an embarrassing state of confusion as to his course; which rendered him, temporarily, lost. Yes, even great Inu lords did manage to become disillusioned due to adversity from time to time, appalling as that fact might be. The whipping of that frigid, gale-force wind, allied with the furious and unrelenting attack of the sleet and snow that assailed him from what seemed like every damned angle that existed, it was safe for him to assume that he would not be finding his way home any time soon.

Just as he began to consider the option of using Tenseiga to erect a barrier in which to wait out the storm, Sesshoumaru managed to catch the scent of burning wood and he quickly turned in the direction from which said scent came. Slowly his feet started to move toward the south west to locate the source, wondering if  there could be some kind of shelter nearby. The wind picked up, attempting to push him backward to his previous location and prevent him from discovering the source of the fire; he remained determined to press on though and made painfully slow progress, but at least he was making some. Squinting, he saw a formation of craggy-looking rock drawing near; his hopes of recognizing the area were shattered as he still had no damned idea as to where he even was. Somehow, he just knew that the cursed damned sorceress had something to do with the storm, although he could not prove it.

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Kagome looked up in hopeful anticipation, but then her face fell once she recognized her 'visitor'. Instant nervousness and anxiety rapidly extinguished her hopes as a bucket of water being thrown upon a fire. Sesshoumaru? What in the world was he doing wandering around out in this mess? Kagome wondered if by chance that he too had become lost and needed shelter until the winter storm passed...and if the Daiyoukai would eject her from said shelter in order to have it for himself.

In the past, the demon had proven himself to be rather selfish, trying to take Inuyasha's sword away in a jealous tirade-slash-hissy fit. That alone, instilled great concern in her mind over the guy making her leave and fend for herself out in the arctic temperatures. She instantly saw visions of herself frozen stiff laying pathetically in the snow, slowly being covered by a frigid blanket of white until nothing remained but a mound; it made her shiver to her very core.    

Neither being said a word as he stood there staring at the fire, almost as if he was disappointed in some way, and she could not tell if it was because of who he had found when he entered, or if it was because of the small size of the fire. If Kagome did not know better, she would swear that she had just seen the guy shiver, but she did her best not to draw attention to it; it was extremely hard for her to do though, especially when she noticed that he was short a couple of items from his usual attire. No wonder the demon looked half frozen; his clothing was so thin and he was missing that big, white, fluffy thingy he always sported upon his shoulder. In her three and a half year excursion through the Japanese countryside she had never once seen him without it and had marveled that, no matter the season, the demon always appeared unaffected by the weather. Yes, that furry...whatever it was, had to be what kept him so warm in the winter and so cool in the summer...maybe.

"Hello, Sesshoumaru. This storm just came out of nowhere...I don't think that anyone was expecting it; it's quite strange, huh?" She glanced up at him, noticing how he appeared to be considering something; how she hoped it wasn't killing her and tossing her body out in the snow. "You can wait the storm out here if you want to; I know my fire isn't very big, but it is adequate, I think. Anyway, it has to be more appealing than venturing out in that mess."

Deciding that staring at him while he made up his mind in regard to her offer to share her shelter, Kagome started talking to try to offset her nervousness. She always did that when she felt ill-at ease; something that Inuyasha always gave her grief about. She couldn't help it though. "I got separated from my group just as the storm hit; I hope they found somewhere safe and warm to wait too. I have no idea as to where I am though; which means that it is most likely going to take them a while to find me..." 

Kagome could have kicked herself for saying that. What if the demon saw this as his prime opportunity to kill her off, just as he had tried to do a few times in the past? Before, there had always been someone else around to lend her aid or distract him from his decision to end her existence, but now there was no one...only her. Great; just perfect, she was so going to die. She just knew it.
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INUYASHA © Rumiko Takahashi/Shogakukan • Yomiuri TV • Sunrise 2000
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