By: The Hatter Theory
Disclaimer: I don't own the rights to Inu Yasha
Lifeless and pale, oblivious to rain and storm and indifferent to mud and gore and chaos.
Self sacrifice has never been so perfect, so beautiful, so recklessly thoughtless.
Light and sound and cataclysm. The world bends and shatters within the confines of it's realities, trying desperately to shape itself back together as forces foreign and all consuming eat at it's edges, trying to shape it into something different, something more. A wish given from a pure heart for a better world. A wish that consumed that heart and took it, perfect and beating, and accepted it, imposed it upon a world that did not deserve it.
And when the dust settles and clears, when the roar has died down and the only thing that remains is the mud and rain and blood, when there is naught but lifeless, waxy flesh, cool to the touch and already decaying, he drops to his knees, and the cry that rips itself from his throat is as animal as he is, as inhuman as the world has always claimed him to be.
She is gone, and there is nothing.
There is no world worth having without her, no place or time worth living in if she is not in it, not laughing and screaming and breathing and telling him to sit for every stupid, rash, angry thing he has done or been tempted to do.
There is no victory without her by his side, with their group of misfit warriors. The battle is fought, the war is over, and while it is a win for the good guys, while it is a new age for peace, there is no victory. There is nothing to mark their day as different except the Great Enemy, the They, the He, is gone, and She is gone with him.
It is not a victory, but a loss. A defeat.
The rain pours, and his clothing deflects fire, but it soaks up the rain as he stares, as they all stare. Too numb to accept, but too perceptive to blind themselves to.
Except one lone figure, walking forward, back straight and hair hanging heavy with it's weight, hiding his face from view. A series of white lines, curves and claws standing out from the darkness. Step by step, slow and steady, closer and closer to the body he himself cannot bring himself to move closer to, to acknowledge quite yet, because seeing is believing, and the closer he moves, the more solid the truth will be, the more undeniable reality will become.
But it is a day for shattering realities, for steel to bend and break because the lone figure, a brother that has only ever been half acknowledged as a bitter truth is bending and breaking and shattering, falling to his knees, oblivious to the mud and gore as it stains and soaks the white, the black ichor tainting purity and red blood blending and blotting out the crest of a house unknown.
Realities bend, they shatter, they are obliterated beneath the weight of the howl that sings of sorrow and loss and respect and...Love.
Secrets are pocket realities, islands of being where the world cannot impose it's rules and boundaries. How far the secret swept, if it was merely a seed of light or if it was a fire known to them both, it does not matter, because there is so much love and anguish in the sound that it rings in his ears and mind and he knows it is something that will haunt him, beautiful and terrifying, until he has breathed his last. The image will fade, the memory of the day, but that sound will live through centuries. It is pained and glorious, reverberating through his eardrums, threatening to crush bone and rend flesh with it's sharp, smooth edges, needling into his heart like a blade.
He knows it is a private moment, that his brother is oblivious, that this is something he should not see, but he cannot look away, because it is a miracle and a tragedy and he knows there will never be another moment like this.
It is a sound of love lost, of futures stolen. It is a universal sound, a noise that resonates with every painful memory and drags them to the surface and yet it is deeper, more desperate and despairing for it's rarity, for the source that voices it so easily. It is beauty and grace and everything his brother has ever been, but it is also broken.
He could hate him, could push him away, and might have, had it not been for the grief that swamped him, fingers clutching at his throat and blinding his eyes with tears that he sheds not only for the woman they both loved, but for the one that loved her quietly, maturely, perhaps more. A cry, a lament, a beautiful, terrible thing that should have never found breath, it is the gesture that stops him. It is the secret threaded into the air, low and steady. It is stronger and deeper than anything he has ever felt.
Life is made of defining moments, of quicksilver instances that shape and rock the very core of the soul. He could turn away, he could move forward to try and end the inhuman, unearthly howl. He could, he could, he could. He could do anything.
But instead he stays, keening softly, his own grief crushed and swept away, lost in that lament. A voyeur, an awkward spectator that sees beauty in the bend and break and cannot go forward. Useless and fumbling, he is a child in the face of that ancient grief, that all consuming sorrow, and he knows there is nothing he can do to stem it's tide, to soften the blow, because that sound is drowning him, making him insignificant and small and smothering him.