Actions

Work Header

Barks

Chapter Text

Naughty, naughty hands were inching closer and closer to the flesh they wanted to fondle. A small smile was twisting upwards the corners of a person's mouth as they were closer and closer to the unsuspecting victim.

The sneaky person felt almost giddy, being so close to the object of their desires. The victim had it coming for months, teasing with every motion of their alluring appendages. The sneaky person had been plotting for so long just to get this one chance to satisfy their desire, the lust they knew was wrong, but didn't care anymore. The tips of their fingers were almost brushing the surface of the victim's body as they lay in sumlight, dozing off after a big meal, their hands crossed above stuffed belly, eyes closed in blissful peacefulness. The naughty fingers moved closer oh so slowly, as if shy or afraid. The truth was that the person had to be very careful not to make any mistake.

"Oi, wench, why are you snea- Aaaah!" Inuyasha groaned when Kagome gripped his both ears and rubbed them with a happy giggle. Inuyasha looked up at the smiling face of the young miko and frowned, but after a minute of thinking he decided to let her have her way with his ears. Just this once.

Chapter Text

Miroku hated pickles. He was willing to do practically anything just to avoid them. He could remember sneaking them off his plate and then throwing away while living with Mushin. It had been easy since the old monk hadn't been one to pay much attention to details.

It was still quite easy while travelling with Sango and their friends. Sango was much more observant, noticing his strategy and not letting him continue avoiding pickles. But it took only one meditation session to find a solution to this problem.

His curse turned out to be a blessing.

The Wind Tunnel could suck in any amount of the vile veggies and all Miroku had to do was to pull his beads to the side a little bit pretending heas adjusting his grip on his chopsticks. And when he was moving his hand away there was no sign of the pickles.

But then Naraku was dead and Sango became his wife. And Miroku had to find an another way to avoid pickles. He had to sacrifice many meditation sessions to find a way to avoid his nemesis.

Hard was the live of a holy man.

Chapter Text

It started with Rin drawing Sango sitting under a tree. Shippou drew Kagome under the same tree, just in a different pose. They took the pictures to Kaede and the old miko praised both, but didn't say which one was better. An hour later Kaede had to see two more pictures - Rin's being a picture of Jaken being chased by a stork youkai and Shippou's depicting Miroku fleeing from a bunch of angry women with brooms in their hands. Still, the old miko couldn't tell which one was better.

The next day Rin drew lord Sesshomaru with his mighty sword Bakusaiga in his hand, his fluff draped across his bare chest as the daiyoukai was stepping out from between bushes and towards a serpent youkai who had interrupted his peace. While Kaede was staring at the drawing Shippou just glanced at it once and set to draw his own masterpiece. Kaede and Rin waited patiently for him to finish. Soon Shippou handed the old miko his drawing and Kaede had to fan herself with Rin''s. The young fox drew Inuyasha wielding Tessaiga in its Meldou form and aiming it at a weasel youkai who held his stolen clothes. All of them. And there were no bushes in close proximity of the hanyou.

"I think Shippou wins," Kaede uttered after a momnent and handed the picture to the boy who was grinning. "I think ye should give this to lady Kagome, she'll like to have it." Shippou nodded and rolled the drawing before stuffing it in his sleeve.

"But why? Rin drew Lord Sesshomaru and his fluff! No one can beat the fluff!" pouted Rin.

"Young Shippou's picture was more... Detailed," the old miko replied, resuming her fanning.

Chapter Text

Having troubles while courting a girl/boy? Wanting to steal hearts like a pro? Not knowing how to start/end a relationship? Looking for guidance on the velvety road of love?

Look no more!

Monk Miroku, fair and wise, humble and honest, will help you bring out your natural charm and teach you all you need to know to get into beds and hearts of others!

You wonder if I can do it?

Need a proof of what my advices can do?

Just look there! A savage, rude hanyou and a stubborn, short-tempered miko. One could think there would be no chance for those two to fall in love. Yet look, they're happily married. All thanks to my helpful hand!

So hesitate no more, sell your valuables, give me your money and I will help you gain the love of your life!

Chapter Text

"...And what am I supposed to tell the teacher?!" on the warm afternoon breeze a voice of a young woman was drifting aboce a wide grassland encircled by tall hills. There was a small camp under a lone tree somewhere near the center of the field, a small fire burning, three rabbits morphing from raw to extra crispy above it as everyone around the fire was focused on something else. "Sorry, sensei, a dog ate my homework?!"

"Keh! It wasn't even tasty!" Inuyasha put his hands in his sleeves. "And now you don't have a reason to go back to this school thing because you have no homework. You can stay with me and hunt for jewel shards."

Kagome rolled the notebook adorned with discint fang marks and slapped Inuyasha on the top of his head, just between his ears.

"Bad boy! Bad!" she cried.

Chapter Text

Sango could remember her father's favourite saying: look at someone's hands and you know who they are.

Kagome's hands were gentle and delicate, yet over time they were grew strong, holding a bow and an arrow steadily. Still her touch on wounds of her friends was tender and caring. Her hands were always moving, as if tracing invisible patterns, especially when she was explaining some stuff to others. Those were hands of a caring, kind person and thaat was who Kagome was.

Inuyasha's hands seemed to be the total opposite of Kagome's. Calloused, big and rough, each finger crowned with a deadly, sharp claw. Yet Sango saw those hands more than once carryimg their friends to safety. His hands were often hidden in his sleeves, moving only when he wanted to do something. Those were hands of a person always ready to protect what they loved and cared for. While Kagome was

Shippou's hands were always moving, small and fragile looking. Yet there was no fear in their movements, there was playfullness and confidence in his friends to help him if needed. His fast tricks could easily change into battle spells thanks to cleverity of the young fox. His hands were of a child who was learning about his powers and finding his path in life.

Miroku's hands were hands of a...

A hand rested where it shouldn't rest. At least without a permission.

"Pervert!" Sango offered the monk her own hand. Hard. Against his cheek.

Chapter Text

A young man was sitting on a bench in a city park, pretending to read a newspaper. He was wearing sunglasses and a dark jacket, a cap covering his head. He was on a spying mission and he prided himself to be an excellent spy.

Higurashi, his pretty girl, was hiding something from him, he was sure of it. She had told him today at school she was going to visit an aunt, leaving just after the last bell.

And now she was standing under a lamp, obviously waiting for someone. Hojo had followed her home and then here. She was oblivious to his presence, the boy was an excellent spy after all, able to follow everyone without drawing attention to his person. He hid a smile behind his newspaper. The girl turned for a moment to her huge yellow bag back, looking for something in it and taking off a baseball cap.

Higurashi suddenly smiled widely and waved her hand to someone. Hojo frowned as he saw a tall boy in traditional clotches run to her side. Was his pretty girl seeing someone else? Was she going on a date with this quite handsome, but odd looking guy in bright red?

"Oi!" he called to the schoolgirl as he leapt above a bench to stand beside her. "Ready?"

"Almost," Higurashi smiled brightly and stood on her tiptoes to put the baseball cap on top of the boy's head. It fit perfectly, covering a pair of white dog ears. The boy had strangely pale hair, way too long for a normal schoolboy. Hojo noticed he had a sword tucked in his obi As she was adjusting the cap she rested one hand on his chest, steadying herself. "Here."

"Good," the white-haired boy said and picked up her bag pack as if it weighted nothing. "So which way is it?"

"There," Higurashi pointed to the North. "My aunt's house is only a few kilometers away. We should hurry, she told me the mononoke's hidding in her basement." The boy nodded and pulled her to his chest before leaping to the roof of a small building on the other side of the alley. With a squeal Higurashi wrapped her arms around his neck before the white haired boy ran across the rooftop and jumped up next two stores to land on top of an another buiding.

Hojo folded his newspaper, his work here was done.

It seemed Higurashi haven't lied to him about visiting her aunt. This time.

Chapter Text

Kagome ran up the shrine steps and then entered her home.
"I'm back!" she called and ran up the stairs to leave her bag in her room. Then, much slower, she went down to find everyone.

Her mom was in the kitchen, preparing dinner. The woman was smiling and told her daughter to go to the living room and keep grandpa and Inuyasha company. Kagome did just that.

"Where's Inuyasha?" the young miko asked her grandfather and looked around. Her grandfather wrote something om a slip of paper and plastered it to something sitting before the TV. Kagome, frowning, went around her grandfather's chair to find the hanyou sitting there.

Inuyasha was motionless, a mild scowl on his face, his hands in his sleeves. Covered in sutraas from the tips of his furry ears to his bare toes.

"Inuyasha! What happened? Are you in pain?" Kagome knelt before him and started to peel off the sutras.

"Don't sweat it, they don't work," he replied, his eyes trained on the TV.

"Give the remote back, vile youkai!" Kagome's grandfather put a sutra on his left ear.

"Fat chance. My movie starts in five minutes."

Chapter Text

A youkai was sneaking upon its prey, slowly, steadily. There was no chance of escape when the predator was closing in on the unsuspecting object of his hunger, his desire. The youkai licked his lips, a sinister twinkle in his inhuman eyes. Soon, very soon...

The youkai looked around to make sure he was not noticed by anyone. He failed to spot a red-clad man sitting on a branch of the tree shielding a little campsite where the youkai's prey was located. The youkai didn't see a pair of golden eyes follow his every cautious step, every motion of his lithe body. He failed to notice a small smirk forming on the hanyou's lips.

The youkai saw his prey, guarded by a miko. This part was tricky, the miko could feel his youki if not distracted. Luckily she was focused on the hanyou. The prey was behind her back, near a big bush. The youkai leapt behind it and reached his hand to grab it, to snatch it and flee to devour it in peace in a safe place far from hanyous and mikos.

A clawed hand grasped his wrist when he was almost touching his prey. Someone yanked the youkai up and his eyes found a pair of yellow ones. His ears filled with the sound of the miko's laughter.

"Nice job, Shippou," the miko praised the youkai, the hanyou dropped him on her lap.

"Too slow, too loud and coming from the wrong direction. I could smell you from that tree," he pointed to an oak in distance. The youkai spared a glance in that direction and then looked at his prey.

'Soon, my chocolate bar, soon I'll devour you...'

Chapter Text

Shippou was sitting on a fence, looking down at three girls sitting before him on grass. All three were really pretty and their eyes were sparking when they were looking up at him. The young fox gave a smug smile when he laid his small hand on the hilt of a sword he held on his lap. The sword was too long to carry tucked in his belt and too heavy for him to carry it around resting on his shoulder.

"Shippou..." said the first girl, Sakura, dressed in pink kimono. Her blue eyes dropped to look at the weapon on his lap.

"This' Tessaiga. It can fell a hundred youkai in one swipe," he stated. The girls gasped, Sakura covered her opened mouth with a hand. Shippou thought it was a lovely gesture. He knew he shouldn't take the sword, but it was too tempting... And he was going to return it before Inuyasha would wake up from his after lunch nap, so there was no problem, right? For now he was basking in the girl's admiration.

The kitsune flashed a grin and unsheathed the inu youkai's fang. It didn't change as he brandished the rusty blade - it was in fact more like trying to balance on the fence with a heavy sword, but he hoped it still looked cool.

"It's old nd ugly," Sakura's younger sister pointed out.

"Yeah, but that's the point," Shippou replied. "It's very old, it was made from a fang of a great inu youkai and holds his power..."

"SHIPPOU, YOU LITTLE FUCKER!" a roar came from a nearby bunch of trees. All four kids looked that way and saw a red clad man with white hair and dog ears running in their direction, deadly claws exteded and his face twisted in rage.

"A youkai! Save us!" the girls screamed and ran to hide behind the boy holding his sword.

"You can kill the youkai, Shippou!" cheered Sakura. Shippou looked at the approaching doom and noticed three people running after him. They were too far for a 'sit' to reach Inuyasha's ears... The boy looked down at the katana in his hands.

"Um..." he started and suddenly the sword was yanked off his hands, instantly transforming in it's master's grip. The girls behind the fence screamed in terror upon seeing their hero losing his weapon. The sound made the dog-eared man look straight at them, still holding Shippou's tail in his other hand. "Let go of me, Inuyasha!"

"You steal my sword once more and I'm windscarring your sorry ass till you have no fur left," he growled and shook the kitsune. Then he threw him on the ground, picked Tessaiga's sheath to hide the blade and tuckle it where it belonged, between folds of his obi.

"Young Shippou!" called a little breathless Miroku. "Picking girls again?" he flashed a proud grin at the fox who was standing up, supported by all three of his fans.

"Next time steal his staff, runt," Inuyasha put his hands in his sleeves

Chapter Text

Sango sighed as she finished dressing in her old demon slayer suit. It was not fitting as it had been before her pregnancy... She decided that she had to do some sewing to adjust it to her body shape again. The woman ran her hands down her breasts and other curves of her body until she reached her hips. Well, that couldn't be helped right now.

There was a youkai in a nearby village and she had to return to work sooner or later. Their twins could wait under Kaede's watchful eye for a few hours and the young mother really needed a break and a workout. It was lucky Inuyasha was gone for hunting in his forest, she could go with Miroku and no one would give her the whole 'mothers should raise kids, not fight' bullshit. She was a slayer, it was her life. Kids were important too, but she wasn't about to drop her work and become an ordinary house hen.

In fact it was what she had told Inuyasha before he grumbled that he'd go to hunt for two days - it would be only two short days before his traditional visit to the dry well. Good that the yoikai appeared before his return.

Miroku came in their house after leaving the sleeping twins in Kaede's house and it brought Sango to the present. She reached for her trusted boomerang before turning to face her husband. Her staring husband with those wide eyes and broad smile.

"I'm ready. Grab your staff and we... The OTHER staff!"

Chapter Text

Kaede was sitting by an injured man, wiping his sweaty forehead. She had finished just not too long ago wrapping his brused body in bandages and treating his cuts. 'Who could hurt him so?' the old miko wondered. 'Could it be Inuyasha? But why would he attack this poor man?'

As if on cue Inuyasha entered the hut and sniffed. A low growl came out of his throat as he stalked closer to the poor man. Kaede glared at the hanyou.

"I think he got enough," she said. "What did he do to make you hurt him so, Inuyasha?"

The hanyou looked at her, quite surprised.

"I did nothing to hin. Yet."

"I did," came a soft voice from the doorway and they both turned their eyes to look at the petite young miko standing there. This was the moment the man opened his eyes and gasped.

"Oh, celestial maiden!" he whispered and reached his hand in her direction. "I merely wanted to take your robe so you'd marry me, oh, fair lady from the skies..."

The end of his sentence was almost unintelligible behind an another growl from Inuyasha. Luckily for the man Kagome stood beside her husband and laid her hand on his shoulder.

"That creep came to the hot spring and tried to steal my clothes," she explained to the old miko. "So I just..."

"Maimed him." Inuyasha gave his wife a wide, proud smile.

"It's unwise to irate ye, dear child," Kaede said as she was looking at the pair smiling at each other. 'And here I was thinking ye could make him gentler... It seem he rubbed off on ye more than ye on him.'

Chapter Text

Inuyasha dreaded the future as he was walking through a strange garden hidden in a valley. The smell of flowers was intoxicating and he felt a bit dizzy just breathing. Yet he had no choice, he had to save everyone. Luckily for him the smell had no bigger effect on him, in contraast to the rest of his pack, who had no youkai blood to protect them from the magical influence of this damned smell. Well, Shippou technically was a youkai, but he was very young. Who knew what was happening to his friends when he was walking around, looking for them?

The first person he found was Shippou, curled in a ball, his cheeks flushed and a little too hot. The hanyou picked his limp body up and carried him out the garden to the place where Kirara was waiting outside of the garden wall. The cat was the one who had brought Inuyasha here to save the others.

Then he found Miroku. The monk wasn't asleep, but he was not in his right mind either. He grasped Inuyasha's clawed hand as soon as the hanyou crouched beside him under a plum tree. His eyes were fogged and looking at Inuyasha with a strange light in them. A wide, stupid grin appeared on his lips.

"Would you consider bea-" the other fist of the inu hanyou hit his head hard enough to knock him out. Scowling fiercely Inuyasha dragged his friend to join the fox. Kirara mewled and licked Miroku's cheek, but Inuyasha didn't wait for the man to wake up. He had to find the rest of his pack.

He had to push his nose in his sleeve, the scent was growing thicker the closer he was to the center of the garden. His eyes were scanning the area in search of two women. Suddenly he heard a girlish squeal. The next second he was on the ground, Sango straddling his waist and grinning happily as she grabbed his ears and rubbed them. Inuyasha let out a strange mix of a yelp and a growl.

"Puppy!" Sango rubbed his ears a little too hard for it to be enjoyable. It was painful and annoying. He looked into her eyes, fogged and unfocused as she was babbling to him about how a good puppy he was. With a growl he pushed her off himself and quickly picked her up to throw over his shoulder and carry out of the garden.

It appeared to be his greater mistake so far.

'Note to myself; never throw Miroku's wife over your shoulder,' he thought when he felt the woman's hands grasp his behind and squeeze it. Immediately he dropped her to the grassy ground, now not only annoyed, but also embaressed. The slayer giggled and reached her hands towards him when he clenched his fist and knocked her out before grabbing her and taking off the garden. Kirara gave him an unpleased look when she saw him lay the woman beside her husband.

"I had to," he stated and turned to the gate of the garden. Then he took a deep breath. "Kagome! I'm coming for you!"

He dreaded the near future...

Chapter Text

Inugang was walking through a peaceful forest in fairly good mood. The day was sunny, they were moving in direction of a village where they could find a rumor about a jewel shard, Kagome didn't have to sit Inuyasha yet, Miroku was behaving, Shippou was telling jokes instead of playing pranks on the hanyou walking in front of the rest. Kagome was pretty glad to be alive right now, walking beside Sango.

Suddenly they heard a loud noise and a bunch of trees to their right fell. Inuyasha ran to see what caused this and his friends quickly followed just in case it was a vile youkai.

Well, it was a youkai, alright.

Kagome stopped beside Inuyasha, staring with him at a huge hole in the ground, the fallen trees laying on the edge of it. A youkai was in the hole, digging it with an air of determination around it.

"S... Sesshomaru?!" Miroku blinked a few times. Suddenly Jaken apporached the group, wielding his mighty staff.

"You lot! Leave my amazing lord alone!" he yelled at them. The inu youkai didn't even lift his head from his digging, his paws quickly widening and deepening the hole.

"Oi, Asshole, why are you diggin'?" Inuyasha asked his half-brother, ignoring his faithful servant. Rin ran to them, smiling widely and holding a bunch of flowers in her hand.

"I think Lord Sesshomaru was bored," she explained when the daiyoukai didn't answer the hanyou's question. The girl handed her flowers to Kagome and Sango, dividing her bunch in two.

"I heard inu youkai can dig holes out of boredom, but I didn't expect to see lord Sesshomaru doing this," Sango said in wonder, watching the mighty white dog working. The group was watching him while talking to Rin and ignoring Jaken. After a few minutes Sesshomaru, in his humanoid form, emerged from the hole, his eyes scanning the audience.

"Hm," he said when he landed on the edge of the hole. Jaken ran to his side.

"M'lord! I told them to go awa-AAAAA!" Kagome blinked and almost missed Sesshomaru's leg moving and pushing Jaken... Right over the edge of the hole. The whole group stared at the youkai who almost smiled at them and started to walk away.

"Rin," he said.

"Yes, my lord?" the girl asked, as suprised as everyone else.

"Follow me if you wish to," this sentence was answered with a happy "yes!" and the pair went away. The inugang looked at each other and then slowly crept closer to the hole.

"Lord Sesshomaru! Wait for meeeee!" came a loud cry from within it.

"Little brother," Inuyasha turned his head to see his brother who had stopped nearby. "If you help him out of this hole I'll kill you."

"I think we misjudged lord Sesshomaru's actions," Miroku said as he was observing Jaken trying to climb out of the hole.

"It wasn't boredom, it was self-preservation instinct," Sango nodded her agreement.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was walking fast through the garden, looking everywhere to find any sign of his miko. The intoxicating smell of flowers was rendering his nose useless - inhaling too much of it would make him act crazy as well, at least he was convinced that'd happen. For now his youkai blood was his only defence from the craziness.

His thoughts wandered back to where Kirara was watching over the rest of their pack - the sleeping kitsune, the monk making improper offers and his suddenly bold wife. Only one person was missing, the most important person in Inuyasha's heart.

He stopped when he saw an arrow laying on the ground, pointing to his left.

"Holy shit, she's armed," he groaned. He was pretty sure that whatever fate had in store for him it'd include an arrow pointed at him, his beloved one holding the bow.

It wouldn't be the first time.

He spotted an another arrow to his right, a dozen meters from the first one, pointing to a bit different direction. It made him frown as he bent down to pick it. It was almost like a trail he had to follow. 'Who put the arrows to show me the way? Was Kagome abducted and leaving arrows for me to find her in this stinking garden?'

As he thought about his sweet, too-kind-for-her-own-good wife in clutches of a youkai his blood boiled. With a growl he followed the arrows, moving much faster now. 'Just wait for me, Kagome!'

When he passed a bush and entered a somewhat free space between decorative plants he stopped. There, in the center of the clearing, was a cross made from two arrows. And just beside it was something red...

'...Miko hakama...?'

'But where's the rest of the miko?'

His ear swiveled to left when he heard some movement, but before he could turn his head or react in any other way...

"Sit!"

Inuyasha had enough time to close his mouth before kissing the grassy ground. The rosary was holding him to the ground, but after a moment he could lift his head and look around. He had to find his wife! She needed saving! And scolding for using the cursed word!

He ssaw a pair of feet clad in white tabi walking closer to him. He struggled to stand up, to prepare himself for the incoming fight. He had to save his wife!

He could feel the immense pull of the beads, binding his spirit, holding him against the ground. The person approaching him went around him and...

...Sat on his back. "The hell?!"

Inuyasha was expecting a painful blow, an attack of a youkai, some mocking of his current state - anything, but that! Yet there was someone sitting on him, their legs on both sides of his body. He felt their weight shift as they leaned forward and suddenly the most pleasant scent filled his nostrils, overpowering the smell of flowers.

It was even more intoxicating.

Both his ears swiveled back when he felt hot breath fanning against the fur covering them. A shiver ran down his back and he heard a low chuckle.

"Bad boy... Playing with Sango when I was waiting for you..." a voice spoke and Inuyasha yelped when he felt teeth gnawing at the lobe of his ear. "Mine."

"K-Kagome!" he breathed out and turned his head to look at her, pushing himself off the ground as soon as the spell faded. His wife smiled at him as she rested her hands on his shoulders to steady herself on his back.

"What should I do with my misbehaving puppy, hmmm?" she asked, rubbing his shoulderblades with both her hands, her thighs squeezing his waist.

Chapter Text

When Kagome eame home she saw her brother sitting by the kitchen table, grim and motionless and her mom wasn't at home. Souta glanced at her from a piece of paper on the table before himself.

"What happened?" she asked her brother. Souta sighed.

"Mom was called to my school because of my last biology test," he said. Kagome blinked.

"What's about it? You're such a good student, I don't believe you could get less than eighty..." she asked, utterly surprised. Her brother just sighed and handed her the piece of apper - his test. Kagome sat at the table and started to read it.

There was one point where the student had to fill empty spaces in random sentences. It was pretty easy, because the sentences were about farm animals. There was some stuff about sheep, cows, cats and...

'Dogs eat [ramen] like all carnivores.
Dogs say: ["Move your lazy ass, wench!"]. When angry they say: ["Fuck this shit, I'm out!"], while afraid: ["Nonononono, Kagome, no sits...!"]. They hate [being sat] and love to get their ears [scratched].
Dogs are very [cool] and [loyal], but also [stubborn] and [stupid]. A dog requires to wear a [rosary] with its name and name and adress of their owner.'

"I can see why the teacher wanted to talk to mom now..." Kagome chuckled.

Chapter Text

'A bad day when you lose a few jen? A bad day when you're late for a meeting with a friend or your boss? A bad day when you're hungry and have to cook your food? A bad day when your brother pushes his hand through your gut instead of greeting you?

You know nothing about Bad Days. loser.'

Inuyasha was growling at an imaginary person complaining about minor bad stuff in life. The hanyou was sitting beside a basket containing his crying (more like whining) teething baby. Kagome was sitting on the other side of the basket, trying to calm the baby. It was in vain, the pup's voice was still as loud as earlier and Inuyasha was considering ripping his ears off.

"Inuyasha, don't growl, it could be worse," she said, not lifting her head from her task of trying to calm down their kid.

"Like how?" he asked. A thunder filled the air and heavy rain started suddenly pouring on the valley, a strong wind howled around their little hut. The child went quiet for a second, startled, then started to cry even harder. "Don't answer," he sighed when the rain leaked through the roof and started to fall on their bed.

Chapter Text

Yuka, Eri and Ayumi were standing in a shop with Kagome, picking perfumes. They were in the middle of an alley full of sweet scents.

"I'll take the Peach Heaven," Ayumi said and picked a vial. "It smells so pretty!"

"Yeah, it suits you," Yuka nodded as she smelled a slip of paper she had sprayed with some perfume. She cringed and put that bottle back on its shelve "You must always find a smell that suits you and makes boys attracted to you. Right, Kagome?" she turned to the only girl in their group who had a boyfriend right now.

"Eh..." Kagome frowned a little, thinking about the said boy. "Inuyasha has a great sense of smell and he relies on it all the time. I guess you're right, it may be important..." the young miko trailed off, thinking about Inuyasha and the idea of seducing him with some perfume.

"And which perfume do you use?" Eri asked, tilting her head.

"Um..." Kagome didn't have time to answer because Yuka chuckled and pointed to the end of the alley. Kagome gasped as she saw Inuyasha standing there, swaying a little and obviously irked. "Sorry, guys, I need to go."

She ran to the hanyou who was observing her, his eyes blazing in the shadow cast on his face by the baseball cap. He grabbed her by an elbow and practically dragged away from the alley. They had to pass a few meters before he took a deep breath

"Don't go there again. I couldn't find ya," he said, his voice tense. Kagome just smiled thinking that all the perfume scents had to mask her own scent and it was why he was so annoyed.He was always so serious about protecting her and to do so he had to know wherre she was. 'If he trusts his nose more than anything maybe I could use it to make him...' Kagome thought, following her hanyou to the fast food alley.

o0o

Kagome climbed off the well and sat beside it, smiling to herself. It was the day to put her plan into motion. She had given it a lot of thinking and had done some research before spending money on the perfect smell she could pick.

She was sure that perfumes and pre-made stuff were not good. What if there were traces of scents he could pick while a human couldn't? So she used only fresh, natural stuff and didn't use a lot of it too, not to overwhelm him. Now she had just to wait and see what would happen. Soon enough she felt his youki approach and it made her smile. He was sneaking on her, slowly approaching her from the direction the wind was blowing in. Kagome chuckled and adjusted her incense bag on her shoulder, sewed to the collar of her blouse by a few strands of thread. Then she sat with her legs bent, her head resting on her knees, pretending to be lost in thought. She just had to wait and see if her plan was good.

She heard sniffing just beside her ear and resisted the urge to flinch and look at him. She could feel his warm breath on the skin on the side of her neck. Then...

The hanyou crouching just behind the miko let out a small rumbling noise of approval before opening his mouth and digging his fangs in the bag attached to her shoulder. With a quick movement he tore his prey from her blouse and quickly retreated.

With a surprised gasp Kagome lifted her head and looked back. Inuyasha was crouching a few meters away from her, tearing the bag to shreds with his claws and devouring the fried chicken leg. In matter of seconds he was holding but a few straps of fabric and a bone.

"H-hey!" she glared at him as he licked the bone, one ear swiveled in her direction when he put the bone between his teeth and... Bit it in half.

"Have more?" he asked and his eyes lit up with predatory curiousity. Kagome gulped when she saw the hanyou looking up and down her form, obviously looking for more of her perfume...

Chapter Text

Sango was walking through a forest near the camp of the group of her friends. It was a nice day and they were waiting for lunch to be ready - this time it was fish since Kagome's instant food was gone. The youkai slayer was just enjoying a short walk while the rest was lazily waiting in the camp for their food.

It was so peaceful and quiet. As much as Sango loved the company of her friends she liked to spend some time alone from time to time.

Suddenly she entered a small meadow and gasped in shock upon seeing what was sitting in the middle of it.

o0o

Inuyasha suddenly jumped off his branch and growled. The humans in the camp looked at him in worry and reached for their weapons, but quickly pulled their hands away from them. Lord Sesshomaru walked from behind the trees, carrying Sango in his arms.

"What did you do to her, asshole?" barked Inuyasha, Miroku and Kagome standing beside him with concern and fear in their eyes, Shippou trmained behind, but one could see he was as worried as the rest.

"This Sesshomaru did nothing to the youkai slayer, little brother." the daiyoukai stated in his emotionless voice and laid the woman on the ground a few paces from her friends. "The woman fainted upon seeing this Sesshomaru, so this Sesshomaru brought her to her pack."

Inuyasha eyed his brother and gave a small nod. Kagome and Miroku ran to Sango's side to check her health while the hanyou had his eyes trained on his brother.

"Humans are so weak," Sesshomaru said in a casual tone, direction his words to no one particular.

"What did you do? Sango's not one to faint," Inuyasha asked, scowling. Kagome patted Sango's cheek and the slayer sighed, opening her eyes.

"This Sesshomaru did nothing," the daiyoukai repeated his statement. "Slayer, assure my little brother that no harm came to you from this Sesshomaru's hand."

"Uh..." Sango's face became red in matter of seconds. "I... He didn't do anything to me... I... I saw lord Sesshomaru.. Taking a bath?" her voice became a mere whisper when she was stumbling over her words.

"A bath? Is there a hot spring nearby? Or a river? Or a lake?" Kagome asked, relieved to see Sango awake and excited because of the chance to take a bath. Sango's face became redder and she shook her head. Inuyasha snorted as he saw that, Sesshomaru just slightly tilted his head.

"So how..." started Miroku, completely lost.

"She saw Sesshomaru licking his balls," Inuyasha explained because Sango kept her mouth closed and there was no chance to get an explanation from the daiyoukai. All people looked at the hanyou in mixtrure of shock, disbelief and confusion. Sango covered her face with her hands and moaned. "What? He's a fuckin' dog, what did you expect him to do?"

Chapter Text

He was crawling in direction of red fabric. He could leave the arrows but was pretty sure Kagome wouldn't forgive him for leaving a perfectly fine hakama behind. Of course, there was also the matter of putting them back on her...

"I-nu-ya-sha!" the sweet voice of his mate filled his ears. The mere sound of his name made him shiver. A part of him, a very big part of him, wanted nothing more than to respond to her seductive voice, to let go of his worries and focus only on her. Yet he was fighting his desires, crawling closer and closer to the hakama. She was intoxicated by the flowers, he had to take her away, to free her from the spell. He had just to grab the red fabric and run away from this crazy garden. Kagome, laying on his back when he was moving, slowly pulled his hair over his right shoulder and...

"Oh, fuck...!" Inuyasha's limbs trembled and she chuckled, a low, throaty sound just against the side of his neck. She licked him there again and hummed her approval, he shook as he felt it against his back where her chest was pressed.

"Bad boy needs a punishment," she purred.

"Kago-" he started and then felt her dull teeth bite his neck just above the collar of his kimono.

Who knew there was an anotheer subduing spell in her weaponry?

"Oh, my mount collapsed..." Kagome giggled and patted his back as he spat the grass off his mouth. He reached his hand forward and grabbed the thick fabric of her hakama. 'Now we just need to...' In his mind it was quite easy - he had just to stand up and run with Kagome on his back - nothing they had not done before.

The problem was Kagome wasn't on his back anymore. He jumped to his feet and looked around - the miko was running away, giggling girlishly and looking back at him above her shoulder. Inuyasha swore and ran after her. The chase was short since he caught her in a few leaps and then both of them fell to the ground, Kagome gasped under the weight of her husband pressing her against the soft grass.

"Kagome!" he called to her, trying to reach the sane part of his beloved wife. She caught his ear and pulled it.

"Bad puppy!" she scolded and earned a low growl. Her brown eyes widened as if in a realization. "Oh no, you're not a puppy! You're a hellhound desiring to devour a maiden! Oh, please, don't eat me, virile hound!" she exclaimed dramatically while wrapping her legs around his waist.

Inuyasha looked at her, not sure if he was more confused, excited or frustrated. The miko reached her delicate hand between them and grinned as Inuyasha's face paled. 'Oh, gods...'

"I found something hard here..." she gave him a wide, sly grin. Sweat adorned his forehead as he turned a darker shade of pink. Where did she learn how to talk like this? It has to be Miroku's influence...

"That's Tessaiga's hilt," he replied while thanking the gods his wife's nimble fingers had strayed this way. 'Not like there was a difference in hardness between Tessaiga and my... Don't! Don't think about her! Don't inhale the damn flowers!' he cried at himself, shaking his head and trying to keep control over himself. He had to save her, to make her breathe clear air again. The desire to protect his mate, to see her eyes no longer fogged, was strong enough to make him move away from his wife. They could continue this talk later, when his Kagome was really herself. He threw her hakama at her. "Get dressed!"

That was the worst part - he didn't want her to get dressed. The hanyou shook his head to clear his thoughts. 'I spent too much time in this fuckin' place.' Kagome pouted at him.

"Dress? Why? I don't want to dress! I want my hound to..." an idea came to his mind. Inuyasha, who was a man of never thinking too much before acting, decided to put his plan in motion immediately. He hovered above her and licked her earlobe.

"Dress so I can rip these clothes off you, Kagome," he didn't have to even try to sound husky and lustful. Kagome squealed and pushed him away. To his relief she did that so she could put on her hakama. As she did she smiled widely at him and winked.

"Run away, maiden," it was time for part B of his masterplan. His clawed finger pointed in one direction as he crouched and barked playfully at the woman. She giggled and did just that. Inuyasha waited for a moment and howled before running after her. He was an inu hanyou, he definetely could shepherd his wife off the damn place.

Som time later Inuyasha was sitting on the ground in an uncomfortable position. Miroku and Sango were waking up and Kagome was sitting on the ground next to him, still panting after her run. It was good - for every inhale of the clear air she was more and more herself. Shippou was still asleep, but was no longer so hot and flushed.

"Inuyasha? What happened?" asked Sango when she finally sat up, breathing deeply.

"What are you doing here?" added Miroku as he ran his hand through his hair, frowning as he was remembering the past few hours. "We went to investigate a garden... And then..." he fell silent and stared at the scowling hanyou, his eyes widening. "Oh, good Buddha..."

"You! You wanted me to bear your kids! And you grabbed my ass!" Inuyasha yelled, pointing at his friends who turned pink upon remembering that. Then Inuyasha turned to face Kagome. "And you...!" Kagome covered her mouth with a hand as her face became as red as Inuyasha's kimono. 'She remembers now,' he thought. "You're going with me!" Inuyasha picked his wife up and ran away from the dreadful place of tortures and tempations. "Go home!" he called over his shoulder to their friends.

"Wh... What are you doing, Inuyasha?" Kagome uttered, too embaressed to look up at her husband. She was still blushing hotly.

"What a hellhound's supposed to do." he growled as her and smirked as her blush deepened.

Chapter Text

Kagome smiled as she sat on the fur-covered floor. Inuyasha lowered himself to his hands and knees before he turned in a few circles, patting at the furs before he finally rested his body on the patted area. Kagome giggled at this sight.

"What's so funny?" he scowled at her as Yuki came to her other side and sat beside her.

"Oh, you looked like a puppy preparing a comfortable spot for itself," she said teasingly. The forest spirit's ears twitched in irritation.

"Feh!"

"Quiet, I'm almost ready!" Shippou demanded. The kitsune was sitting beside the basket where the pups were, all of them observing the hanyou and miko curiously.

"Okay, we're quiet now," Kagome smiled warmly at him. The fox looked back at the pups and gave a nod.

"Up! Up! Down! Left! Down! Right!" four little voices were barking, each one a little different than the rest, even Kagome could hear the differences. The pups were barking happily, their little tails wagging in excitement.

"You taught them to bark, big deal," Inuyasha snorted.

"It's like they're singing," Kagome shook her head and laid her hand on his shoulder. "Don't discourage him. Shippou, you did great. I'm sure you'll teach them more tricks?"

"Yeah! Thanks, Kagome!" Shippou beamed at her, then turned to the puppies to tell her an another combination of barks to perform.

Chapter Text

Kagome and Inuyasha went to the camp to put some bandages on the hanyou's shoulder, wounded in the fight with the youkai currently scattered around a big field, multiple pieces of its body pierced by adamant spears.

Sango was about to follow the pair, she picked Shippou and Kirara, but turned to face Miroku when she heard him chuckle. He was kneeling beside a few smaller adamant pieces impaled in the ground.

"What's wrong?" she asked as he pulled one of them out and examined it with a frown. He hid the piece in his sleeve.

"Nothing, my dear Sango," he replied. "Just collecting souvenirs."

"souvenirs?" Shippou tilted his head watching the monk pick two more shards.

"Of course," Miroku grinned and stood up. "Shall we go? I know a nice inn in the village down our way."

"Monk, we don't have money to buy rooms in an inn, expecially expensive one," Sango protested.

"No, but maybe the innkeper likes souvenirs as much as I do," Miroku picked a shard of adamant while passing by the rest of the group.

Chapter Text

Kagome opened the door and after a moment of staring at nothing except fog in shock she let her gaze drop to the ground before the door.

"Oh, my! A lost puppy!" she called happily. A short growl was her reply. Chuckling she bent down to poke the nose of the said puppy with a finger, as if letting her guest smell her hand before she lifted it to pet one ear. It flickered but she just followed it with her fingers as asked. "Wanna come in?" there was a threat in this simple question - obey or stay outside. The quiet growling ceased and the ear remained still while she was playing with it.

After a minute the woman let the guest in and prepared a nice, cozy spot before the fire place. She sat on the blanket behind the guest as he rested on his belly. It rumbled as the scent of some stew warming in a pot above the fire filled the little house.

"Oh, you're wet from the fog and your fur needs brushing!" she said and went to fetch a brush. When she returned the guest was again on the floor, his clothes shed on a pile of damp fabric. She pushed it away, disgusted, and set on brushing the white mane she loved to touch and pull at. The resting man sighed in satisfation when she ran her hands through his hair, her nails scraping down his back.

"So how was your day?" Grunt of annoyance. "I'm just curious what exhausted you so much. " Growl of prideful disagreement. "Hah, you crawled back home, are too tired to talk or anything, you are exhausted, mister. Admit it."

"I still can take ya on," he muttered, not opening his eyes and resting his chin on his crossed hands.

"So my stray, tired puppy with cold paws and wet fur can talk!" she expressed her amazement.

"Stop with the dog references. It's annoying. And getting old."

"Oh. And here I was going to suggest a tummy rub..." she pouted, but there was a twinkle in her eye. He immediately turned on his back and grabbed her wrist to bring her hand to his belly. She chuckled and then blushed when she saw a par of yellow, half-lidded eyes observing her face.

Chapter Text

Kagome chuckled, half embaressed, as Inuyasha pushed Miroku off their hut. The hanyou was gowling at the monk who was trying to give him some last minute advices.

"You can start with taking off your clothes," Miroku was holding onto the doorframe. "You can keep some on, of course, but the general..."

"OUT with you already!" Inuyasha pushed Miroku off the door.

"Sorry for him, he's just happy for you." Kagome heard Sango's voice from outside.

"Just keep him away from our house for some time," Inuyasha replied and slid the door closed.

"But he's right, you can start with that!" came Sango's muffled laughter from behind the door. Inuyasha growled and locked it with a contraption he had seen in Kagome's era, then turned around to look at his bride, standing beside the firepit, still clad in the wedding kimono.

"I see you locked us away from the world," she said, blush coloring her cheeks. In the soft firelight she looked more beautiful than ever. He almost felt too rough, dirty and dark to approach this being of radiance, love and trust. Yet the twinkle in her brown eyes and her shy smile assured him it was alright to come near her, that she wanted him to be close to her forever. As he wrapped his arms around her he felt that he was finally in the place where he belonged.

His ears twitched as he heard an another good advice from the perverted man who was his friend. Then he could hear a thud indicationg his wife knocking him out for crying so loudly about such stuff where every person in the village could hear him.

"No," he whispered, gazing down into the loving eyes of his young wife. "I locked the world away from us."

Chapter Text

Sango woke up and tried to stretch her limbs, but found it impossible. Surprised she opened her eyes and looked down.

Her wrists were tied with a ribbon and her legs were tied with her own obi. She frowned looking at the fabric tightly enbracing her legs from her knees to her ankles. Someone managed to sneak up on her and tie her - how enbaressing! 'Who would...?'

She heard giggles and looked to the side. Miroku was sitting there, his legs crossed. On both his knees were sitting their twin daughters, their son safely on his lap. All of them were smiling and looking at her. Well, all except the sleeping boy.

"What's that? Untie me at once!" she demanded. Her daughters shook their hands.

"Can't do it," they replied, giving her an impression of Inuyasha, especially because both of them crossed their arms in their sleeves just like him. 'Some girls spend too much time with uncle Inu...'

"Why?" Sango asked and tried to free her hands. It was in vain.

"You're not one asking questions here," Miroku grinned and nodded to the girls. "Girls, bring soft cushions."

"Cushions?" Sango asked as their daughters ran to the far corner of the room to bring two pillows. Then they poked their mother, giggling.

"Confess!" they exclaimed. "Confess!"

"Confess what?" Sango asked, quite surprised by this demand.

"Um..." the girls looked at their father as if they had forgot the purpose of the game. He smiled.

"Where is the cookie jar," he reminded them.

"Exactly! Where's the jar? Confess!" they turned to Sango and poked her again. "Or we'll poke you till the lunchtime!"

"If you don't confess we have feathers to giggle you until you tell us where the swets are," Miroku added and winked.

"You can't break a youkai slayer," Sango stated proudly and looked at the twins. "Do your worst the secret of the jar will never leave my mind!"

"Girls, what does that mean?" Miroku asked, his voice playful. While the twins were turned his way, thinking, Sango grinned at her husband.

"Feathers!"

Chapter Text

Kagome and Sango were walking down a path leading to the hot springs near their camp. The place had a few small ponds located in a forest, trees and boulders separating them. It was a perfect place to relax - the veil of stones and greenery making every pond feel almost as if it wa indoors. The girls made sure to always visit this place every time they were crossing the mountains.

Soon they left the main path to follow the one leading to their favourite pond. To their surprise they saw Miroku walking from that direction. Kagome was sure he had not been there to bathe but to wait for them to come and peep. Sango grit her teeth, preparing herself to lecture the pervert. But when he came cloer they saw his face was pale, beads of sweat adorning his brow, his step stiff and his eyes wide as if he had seen the most horrible sight ever.

"Miroku! What happened?" Kagome asked, worried. Sango reached out her hand and touched his shoulder to get his attention. The monk gasped and looked at them.

"I saw Ginta and Hakkaku bathing," the man explained after hearing the question the second time. "I need to... I have some sake in my bag... Need to forget..."

As soon as Sango let go of his robe the monk started to walk again. The girls looked at each other and decided to go to an another pond. They were giggling almost the whole way there, talking about the poor monk who had made a great mistake.

Probably for this reason they didn't notice the second pond was occupied as well until they entered the little meadow holding it. The second after Kagome registered a familiar set of clothes hanging from a branch of a tree on the other side of the pond the bathing person emerged from under the water near the center of the pond, facing away from them.

The soft light of the full moon and stars iluminated the meadow leaving the bathing person perfectly visible for the watching girls. Long hair were falling like a glistering waterfall down his back, clinging to his shoulders and back, partially obscuring a lean, tanned body. Kagome was unable to do more than stare for a long minute, forgetting to breathe.

It was not like she hadn't seen his chest or back before. It was not like she hadn't touched his shoulder or had felt the muscles of his arms tensing when he was wrapping them around her.

But definetely this was the first time she was able to see not only his (not injured) upper body, but also the rest. And as he was making his way to the other bank of the pond she was seeing more and more of it. She was watching like a hypnotized person the water trickling down his skin, his muscles flexing under it as he was moving his limbs. Sango standing beside her let out a strange noise and Kagome's sight fell down the silvery waterfall of his mane to rest on a part of him she was not prepared to see - his butt.

One of the ears previously pressed tightly against his head swiveled back as it caught the noises from the other side of the pond and shortly after it the whole body turned to face the source of the sound. Sango yelped and covered her eyes with both hands, but Kagome was unable to move for a second.

"Oi! Kagome!" he shouted, scowling and lowering himself in the water to hide. It took a moment for Kagome to register the shout and the scowl. And when she snapped out from her staring the miko covered her burning cheeks with both hands and squeezed her eyelids closed.

"Sit!" She cried out the first thing that came to her mind. Her eyes snapped open when she heard a loud splash. She couldn't locate Inuyasha, there were only circles on the water. "Inu-Inuyasha...?"

Chapter Text

The cat entered the rom where the scent of his beloved mistress was mixed with the scent of a dog. Well, not a regular dog - a half dog youkai. It was quite different than a smell of a simple mutt.

Buyo looked around, scanning the area. Kagome wasn't here, from the sound of it she was bathing. But the dog youkai who was stealing her from her cat so often and treating the feline without respect was here. Of course he was laying on the bed - a wise choice, Buyo had to admit that. It had the strongerst scent of the girl and was very comfy. The boy was deep in sleep, not waking up to torment him.

Buyo smiled.

The dog was about to get his revenge, one overdued and deserved.

He walked to a drawer which wasn't entirely closed. With one paw he pushed it to open it further, just enough for him to put his head in. A moment later the fat cat was walking in direction of the bed, dragging a piece of white cloth with imprinted flowers on it. He driopped the fbric just beside a clawed hand resting beside the hanyou's face and quickly moved to sit under Kagome's desk. He licked his paw, pleased and smiling a cat smile.

Ten minutes later Kagome entered her room, dressed in her pjs and prepared for bed. She sighed when she saw Inuyasha asleep. A small smile graced her lips - he looked so peaceful, so happy... His hair was fanned out behind him as he was sleeping on his side, his hands laying relaxed and limp. The miko's eyes narrowed as she saw what was entwined around the fingers of his left hand.

It was white with a colorful flower pattern, with ribbons and stuff. A very girly thing. A very private thing. And Inuyasha was holding it against his face, a small smile adorning his relaxed face.

"Inuyasha..." Kagome growled. The hanyou opened one eye and looked at her, but upon seeing her gaze was fixed on his hand he looked at it as well. His expression went from relaxed to teriffied in a second.

"K-Kagome..." he breathed out and jumped off her bed, as if scared of the object still wound around his fingers. He tore it off his hand. Kagome's eyebrow twitched as she was watching stripes of material flowing to the floor.

"SIT!" the young miko yelled. Buyo curled in a ball under the desk, watching the stupid dog getting his face slammed against the floor.

Chapter Text

Since waking up this morning he knew it would be one of those dreadful days when his hair seemed to have a mind of its own - a very wicked, rebellious mind. And since Bankotsu's hair was long and thick he knew it would take ages to tame it. As a leader of a band of mercenaries he had to look decently.

He sat in his tent, staring at a polished piece of metal being his mirror, holding a brush as if it was his trusted blade. He eyed the unruly mane of hair falling in waves around his face and cascading down his shoulders. He even gave a growl of annoyance before attacking the wors opponent of them all - his own hair.

A string of quiet, yet passionate curses followed the growl soon as he was working. Three times he tried to pull his hair in a high ponytail, then a low one. He even tried to twist it in a bun like one of his comrades was wearing so often.

After a few minutes of losing the battle he started to consider cutting the hair short. He liked it long most of the time, but right now he just wanted to end this mad rebellion of his mane and start his day. He had work to do, damn it!

Suddenly he felt a pair of deft hands tug at his hair, pulling it off his grasp. He turned around to see a smile dancing on lips of his friend. He was so focused he let his sneaky companion approach him without realizing he wasn't alone in his tent anymore.

"Bad hair day, huh?" he smiled wider, his eyes sparkling with mirth. He nodded and groaned. "Can I help you?" he nodded again, this time hope filling his eyes. A sneaky hand snatched the brush from his fingers.

"Sit straight, big bro and let the master work," he was commanded and he complied with a chuckle, not minding the order. His little brother wouldn't challenge him, he was happy to follow Ban's lead, but he was not only his subordinate, he was his dearest friend. So he sat straight and sighed, letting him work on untangling his hair. Then they were sitting in a comfortable silence for a few minutes, until the man behind him threw over his shoulder something slim and heavy like a snake or a rope. He looked down and saw a neatly braided plait.

"Oh!"

"See? I can do magic with my fingers," the other man chuckled and patted his shoulder. "Do you like it, big bro?"

"Thank you! It looks so good and I don't have to cut my hair short to look like a man, not a broom!" he exclaimed as he turned around and threw his arms around his friend to hug him in gratitude.

"Heh, that's nothing. You can always count on me, big bro," the young man smiled happily.

Chapter Text

Lord Sesshomaru was resting against a rock, sitting in sunlight and meditating. He had many things to ponder about and he was enjoying some quiet time. Jaken was away to bring suppies, Rin was playing close to him, Ah-Un was watching over her.

The daiyoukai closed his eyes as he resumed his thinking. Suddenly he felt a little tug on his hair - one sniff told him it was Rin. He pretended not to notice she was playing with his hair. It was kinda nice, even if the girl was pulling at it sometimes. There was no harm in her play and physical contact was important to form bonds in packs. He supposed humans worked similar in this area.

After a few minutes Rin get bored with his hair and let it be, choosing to weave flower crowns, sitting beside his boulder. Sesshomaru gave a small hum. Suddenly he felt an oni on the breeze, the foul scent filling their meadow. He stood up and the intruder approached from behind the treeline.

"Lord Sesshomaru! I heard your swrod's gone and I came to ki-" the oni's eyes almost poped out of his skull when he looked at the daiyokai. Then he started to laugh. Sesshomaru narrowed his eyes - that wasn't what he had expected. Since Tokijin was destroyed many youkai were coming to challenge him, scaring Rin (currently hidden behind him) and learning their lesson the hard way. None of them had laughed at him, Sesshomaru. "Nice hair do, Sesshomaru," the oni uttered almost bowing as he held his stomach and tried to contain his mirth.

The dog youkai reached up and touched his hair. His braided hair, adorned with wild flowers. Upon seeing his eyes widen the oni started to laugh even harder. One swipe of Sesshomaru's whip took his head off.

The daiyoukai turned his gaze to the girl.

"Does lord Sesshomaru not like Rin's braids?" the girl asked in a small voice. Sesshomaru did ponder the matter and ran his hand down a braid.

"This Sesshomaru would like Rin to play with his hair when they are not in the open," he replied. The answer wasn't what the girl expected, her gaze fell down and she bit her bottom lip. "But it is indeed nice." Her eyes lit up and she hugged his leg. A clawed hand reached up to stroke the top of her head.

"Thank you, lord Sesshomaru!"

Chapter Text

1. Instead of shaking hands you tweak ears. No matter where they are.
2. You cringe/tense when someone uses 'sit' in a sentence. You start crying when you read it more than twice in a paragraph.
3. While asked to tell about your day/your plans you go like: "I, [instert name], did/will do..." in a dark voice.
4. You're wary of people with fans. Or mirrors.
5. You stop sleeping in your bed. A branch of a tree near your house is more comfy than that thing.
6. You don't let males let you go through doors or stand behind you, mo matter how innocent they look
7.You have a squishable flea doll in your home. Just in case
8. When you find a hair under your shirt you curse Yura's name. Repeatedly.
9. You're attracted to pink/purple round objects.
10. You feel this odd desire to jump in every old well you find.

Chapter Text

I know I shouldn't leave so rapidly, without no explanation, no goodbye and no proper speech to our people. I bow my head in shame and hope you can find it in your heart to forgive this one for such a terrible, terrible thing!!!

This one left you to Rule our People through hard times, where a Strong Leader, wise and blessed with iron will could find the Right, the Most Blessed Way to guide our beloved, gentle People, who find disgust in War and Bloodshed, who love Peace and Heated Disputes. Yet I knew you are the most fittiest, the most outspoken, the loudest of Kappa of these lands. Only you, my Dearest Sister, can find the Best Way, this one believes in it!!!

This one was never Destined to Rule our fragile Nation of the Most Enlightened Youkai - it was Your Amazing Fate, Dearest Sister, my Intimidating, Loud and Beautiful Beacon of Love and Grace!!! (By the way I hope your Sprained Ankle is bettter, Dearest Sister. You really should pay more Attention to where you're putting your Feet. That Battle for the Last Tuna was a hard one) This one's Destiny was to follow my beloved, terribly scary and most powerful of all the youkai, the one who can Kill hundreds with one Smile, the one who knows no Mercy, who knows no Fear, who steps on my Head without a Flinch and who can Express more with one Facial Expression than any given Kappa with a Thousand Words Speech. All hail to the Great and Mighty Lord Sesshomaru, who roams the Western Lands!!! There is no Greater, no Fiercer, no more Beautiful youkai alive!!!!!

My Life changed so Rapidly to one of Wandering, Battles, Groveling and Adventure! There is no day Lord Sesshomaru (all hail!!!) is not Challenged to a Deadly Duel of Death or Life. Once I was a Ruler, now I am a Servant, yet I do not find it Bad. I find Joy and Pride in following the Lord, I pledged my Loyalty to him and he often lets me be his mouth and unleash my Speeches at others.

I hope the Dragonfly Youkai don't Trouble you too much, Dearest Sister. If they do Kill them all without a second thought, Claim their Land and Enslave those who Survive the Bloodshed, as it is a traditional way of our Great and Noble Nation. I look Forward to Your Reply, Dearest Sister and I'll gladly elaborate on my Magnificient Lord and our Adventures in my next letter.

The Most Loyal, Faithful Retainer of Lord Sesshomaru, the Greatest of Youkai, Jaken.

Chapter Text

It was one of those fine, sunny days when people feel the urge to slow down, take a break, admire the beauty of nature or join their friends in a pleasant conversation. It was good that the gang was in Kaede's village while resting after an another long journey of following rumors about the jewel shards. Kagome was sitting on a blanket under Inuyasha's Napping Tree - named this way by Shippou because the hanyou liked to sleep there more often than anywhere else - and enjoying a picnic with her friends. She looked around to see the tired, but smiling faces.

There was Shippou munching on a chocolate covered nuts while drawing, Sango repairing a leather strap of her bag, Miroku polishing his staff with a cloth and Kirara curled in a ball beside Sango's leg, protecting the woman from Miroku's cursed hand. Kaede was sitting with her back against the tree bark, sorting herbs in her basket and there was plenty of food between them all to eat whenever they felt like it. Kagome was holding a book on her lap, trying to read, but her eyes were drifting off the text to admire the beautiful landscape around them, wild nature, polution-free air, sun rays filtered through leaves of the tree above them... Her eyes drifted up to the red-clad hanyou dozing off on his favourite branch.

For a dog youkai he sure liked to stay high. It was quite funny because that was a rather cat-like behavior, but she understood why he was doing it - it was much easier to keep watch from up there. He seemed to be as tired as everyone else, but refusing to admit it, as always. Now he was laying with his legs and hands dangling in the air, wind playing with his loose robes, his head tilted to the side. She giggled when she saw one ear twitch as if in annoyance.

As she was observing him for a little longer she could see this action repeating over and over again, his expression changing from a relaxed one to a fierce scowl. She noticed a small fly buzzing around the white fuzzy triangle.

"It seems our friend got a new admirer of his cute ears," Miroku commented and Kagome looked down to see that the rest of her gang was glancing up in amusement.

 

"Aye," Kaede nodded. "One wonders how lo-"

"Fuck you, flying bitch!" the hanyou sprang to action in a second, jumping to stand on the branch. To Kagome's surprise he drew Tessaiga and let it transform.

"Is he...?" the young miko breathed.

"He is," Sango replied in a tone suggesting she had seed that before.

"Wind Scar! Adamant Barrage!"

A couple of minutes later Inuyasha spat some more curses, sheathed his sword and jumped off the branch to stalk away in search of a new napping place to rest in peace. His gang was staring after him and around their picnic location. Kagome's wide eyes took in the deep scratches marring the grass of the meadow and the diamond spears impaling some trees around it and the interior of the glade. The space closes to the foot of their tree was the only one part of the clearing being not destroyed. Miroku let out a sigh of relief.

As they all were watching the field of destruction a small fly stood between the shads of adamant, shook its wings and took into the air to find a new viction to buzz around.

Chapter Text

"Inuyasha!" a voice full of shock and fear.

"Kagome!" a voice full of determination and anger.

"Inuyasha!" this time the voice is less shocked, but there is still fear.

"Kagome...!" the sudden pain pushing the breath out of his lungs.

"Inuyasha!" this time the fear is for safety of the other.

"Kagome!" the reply full of the promise of quick death to his foe.

"Inuyasha..." a sigh of relief.

"Kagome!" the voice full of guilt that the other was in danger.

"Inuyasha," a demanding tone accompanied with a tug on his blood soaked robe.

"Kagome," a growl of annoyance.

"Inuyasha!" a command one shouldn't dare to disobey.

"Kagome..." a sigh of defeat,

"Inuyasha..." a gasp of shock and worry.

"Kagome," a shrug to show it was nothing.

"Inuyasha," a smile of gratitude and friendship.

"K-Kagome..." a blush of awkwardness

Chapter Text

It started some time after Sango's choice to join them. He was observing her walk with Inuyasha out of their camp every other day just after dinner and return when it was dark. Sometimes, while staying in a village, they could disappear like that during the day. It was never for very long - less than an hour.

Usually she was breathing harder, sweat on her brow her hair messy and her cheeks flushed. Inuyasha was looking more normal, but he was avoiding his eyes and Miroku was often wondering what exactly these two were doing. Kagome was clueless as they were growing curious with each passing day. Sango and Inuyasha didn't want to share their secret - the hanyou would just smirk and the slayer would tell Miroku it wasn't his business and that he should focus on something else, for example fighting the curse on his wandering hand.

One day while meditating, alone with Kagome annd the kitsune in their camp, Miroku realized that he was jealous of whatever it was. He wanted to have his own secrets with the beautiful slayer, he wanted to spend time with her. He was a liar (well, more like a truth bender) but he was never lying to himself and he was aware of his growing feelings for the young warrior. And of the feelings Kagome had for the hanyou. He was jealous of Inuyasha and that was angering him - he didn't want to feel that way, he didn't want to suspect his friend of betraying Kagome's trust. He had to uncover the secret the pair had.

An opportunity came quite soon, when they were camping near a big lake. Kagome, Kirara and Shippou were enjoying the blessings of a sandy beach and serenity of the place, bathing both in sunlight and water. Sango and Inuyasha left the camp and went down a path leading to a small forest. When some time passed Miroku looked at Kirara and then followed their friends on quiet feet. He was not as stealthy as Inuyasha, but was pretty good at sneaking through bushes and trees. After a few minutes of walking through the forest he heard steel hitting steel. He hurried in that direction when Sango's cry reached his ears. He found himself standing on the edge of a small meadow, his friends too distracted to notice him yet.

The monk was staring at the pair, covered in sweat, panting, their cheeks flushed... Well, at least Sango was looking this way, Inuyasha seemed less tired. Both were holding their swords, Tessaiga in its untransformed form. There was no one else in the meadow, no enemy they could fight, only them.

"Again!" the slayer shouted and Inuyasha's eaars lowered when he lifted his blade to attack her. The woman moved swiftly to the side and kicked the hanyou's hip when he was moving past her..

"Damn, Sango, stop kicking me!"

"Make me!" Inuyasha growled at her panted reply and went after her, Tessaiga swinging madly. Miroku smiled and sank to a sitting position. After a minute the slayer changed her strategy and started attacking her opponent, pushing him to defend himself and walk back. When she kicked him again, this time her heel hit his knee and send him to the ground with a string of curses Miroku realized he was no longer jealous of Inuyasha's time alone with Sango.

He actually pitied the guy.

Chapter Text

Where"Where?" - that was the question Inuyasha and his friends were asking themselves while roaming the landscape. "Where is Naraku? Where is he hiding this time?" - it was the question the inu daiyoukai was pondering while watching Rin and Jaken catch fish. "Where?" - was asking Koga while running here and there with his pack of wolves. "Where?" Kikyou was wondering, sending her soul collectiors to spy around for the dark hanyou.

And no one could find him or his incarnations. One could think while having so many search parties someone was bound to stumble upon Naraku's lair... But nope.

---
"Kanna, adjust your mirror a little to your left, I want to see Kikyou's face when she sees I'm not in the deep cave where she went. Kagura, can you fan a little slower? Hakudoushi, where's my drink?!"

The embodiment of all evil was sprawled on a blanket upon a sandy beach, his incarnations folloqing his every order with more or less eagerness. The hanyou took a cup from a silver tray and took a sip of cool sake with ice, his eyes never leaving the mirror held by Kanna.

"I wonder when they give up," said Byakuya from his spot under a big umbrella next to Naraku.

"Kukuku, those idiots will run around for weeks before giving up," Naraku replied and sighed when Hakudoushi started to put a cream on his feet exposed to the sun. "Meanwhile let's just enjoy our vacation."

"Yes, Naraku," replied his incarnations in a choir of voices.

Chapter Text

Kagome climbed off the well to find herself in the middle of a beautiful meadow, all green, full of flowers and sunshine. It was a pretty sunny day in Feudal Japan while it was raining in her home time.

To her surprise and mild disappointement there was no dog-eared boy waiting for her. But it was not that bad because a fox-tailed boy was there to greet her.

"Kagome!" he exclaimed. "I'm so glad you're here! You don't believe what happened!"

Kagome dropped her bag and hugged Shippou as soon as she stood on the solid ground.

"Hi, Shippou. What happened? Where's eyeveryone?"

"They're under the Sacred Tree," Shippou said and Kagome went that way, leaving her bag for now where it was resting on the ground. "Inuyasha got himself cursed," Shippou added with a wide, malicious grin. Kagome started to run in direction of the ancient tree, fear gripping her heart while Shippou was holding onto her shirt to stay on her shoulder.

Soon she was on the meadow where she had met Inuyasha. To her surprise Miroku and Sango were sitting on the edge of the glade, observing calmly what was happening under the Sacred Tree. They didn't look worried at all what made Kagome pause.

"Is Inuyasha alright?" she asked the pair while Shippou left her shoulder to sit beside Kirara. "Is the curse broken already?"

"No, it isn't, dear Kagome," said Miroku and covered his mouth with his right hand.

"And don't worry, Inuyasha is alright... Mostly," added Sango and... Grinned. Then she pointed to the old tree. "He's behind the Tree of Ages, you should go and see him now," Kagome crined when she saw a twinkle in her eyes, but she didn't waste time, she went to see Inuyasha. Why they were so calm, merry even? Their friend was in trouble and they were sitting and smiling like...

Kagome gasped when she went around the tree. Inuyasha was sitting on a fat root, hiding his face in his clawed hands, looking defeated and tense. Around him was a wide circle of puppies, kittens, roe deers and all other small and adorable animals - all trying to get close and be as cute as possible while making happy noises. A flower crown was upon his head, covering his droopy ears and butterflies were flying around in the sunlight.

"I-Inuyasha?" Kagome breathed out. The hanyou lifted his head and to her surprise she saw cherry blossoms fall from somewhere above them - when she glanced up she saw dozens of birds flying and dropping flowers on the half youkai. Others were just sitting on tree limbs and singing.

"Kagome!" he exclaimed and jumped to his feet, bunnies falling from his lap. Then he leapt to stand before her, grab her hands and look deep, deep in her eyes. The flower crown slid to the side to hand on one of his ears and a robin sat on his shoulder. "Help me!"

Chapter Text

Kanna was standing under a stone wall, her vacant eyes turned in the direction of the opposite wall, a perfect expression of nothingness on her pale face. Her hands were loosely gripping her famous mirror. The girl was enjoying the quiet of the cool room - at least to the extent she could.

Alas, nothing good could last long in mansion of Naraku, the evil incarnate. Kanna blinked slowly as a sound of footsteps reached her ears. Soon Hakudoshi entered the emty room, a big pillow in his hands. He put the pillow on the cold floor in front of Kanna and sat on it.

"It's staarting!" he spat out, his voice demanding. Kanna sighed again and channeled a twinkle of her power into the mirror, waking its powers. Soon the boy was lost for the world, focused on the images in the mirror. His eyes were following adventures of his favourite cartoon characters - Kanna belived they were named The Powerpuff Girls. She didn't really pay attention or care to remember, Hakudoshi liked a lot of cartoons.

Above his head she could see Kagura standing in the opened door, a brush in her hand, her hair cascading over her right shoulder.

"Hakudoshi, it's late. Go to bed," the wind sorceress ordered. Kanna was watching as her sister coaxed the brat in going to his room. Kagura stood before Kanna and sighed.

"Do you have enough battery in this mirror to show me Sesshomaru tonight?" she asked, concern in her voice. Kanna gave her a grimace which for her passed as a friendly smile.

"Yes."

"Thanks," Kagura sank to sit on the abandoned pillow and started to brush her hair. "If you want to I can brush yours later. And put new flowers in it. Would you like pink ones this time?" the red eyes of the woman were fixed on the tall figure walking through a landscape bathed in soft moonlight.

"That sounds... Nice," Kanna replied in her monotone voice.

Chapter Text

Kagome was walking through the garden surrounding her house and carrying a plate of fruit slices on sticks. She was smiling and looking around with joy, waving to her friends and their kids having good time. She was proud of her planning skills and that the birthday party of her daughter was a wonderful one. It was possible not only because her work, but also help of her husband and their friends.

She saw the birthday girl with her silver ponytails waving behind her when she was running after Sango's twins, playing tag. It was so amazing to see her little girl being so big - she was five already! - and so full of life, her little doggy ears perked up in joy. Kagome spared a minute just to observe the kids play under the watchful eyes of teens - Shippou, Rin and Souten were pretending they weren't paying attention, but she had no problem to notice that the young kitsune's eyes were drifting to the running and screaming bunch whenever he wasn't talking to his female companions. And the girls he was talking to were following steps of the kids with their gazes as well.

With a small smile Kagome went to the big oak tree under which the adults were sitting on blankets and talking. She heard Miroku chuckle as he waved a hand in direction of Kouga, who was doing his best to scowl in a way only Inuyasha could.

Speaking of the hanyou... Kagome looked around and spotted her husband sitting cross-legged under a smaller tree, his arms folded, glarind at his half-brother. Sesshomaru was standing a few paces away, his expression stoic as always. He in turn was glaring at a big piñata hanging from a limb of the tree under which Inuyasha was sitting. The thing was Inuyasha's idea - he had it hidden in their shed for past two days, not letting anyone see it.

Kagome realized that Sesshomaru was probably the first person to see the piñata when Inuyasha had hung it just a few minutes before (according to her plan piñata was supposed to be the last attraction of the party before the cake). Kagome walked to his side to finally see the secret surprise hidden behind the tree bark from the others.

"Is something wrong?" she asked her brother-in-law. Sesshomaru spared her a glance.

"Hm," he replied and turned to glare at the hanging thing. Kagome finally could admire it as well and finally she understood the tension she could feel between the inu brothers. She turned to look at her husband.

"Really?" she asked and arched a brow.

This was the moment the children noticed the piñata and ran to it with cries of joy.

"Yaay! Uncle Fluffy's full of candy!" Kagome's daughter bounced on her little feet and clasped her hands. Inuyasha grinned at her and gave her a toy bat.

"Go for it, darling. Hit uncle Fluffy until he lets the goods out," he encouraged her and glanced at his wife (frowning) and half-brother (looking at him with one of his 'die in a pit' glares).

Chapter Text

Kagome and Sango were walking from a hot spring afrer enjoying a long, relaxing bath. They were chatting with Shippou who was riding on Kagome's shoulder, smiling widely at the two girls. The day was coudy, but there was no rain, it was quite warm and the place they were camping was a lovely meadow with a small stream and thick trees surrounding it. It was lovely and the nearby hot spring was just a pleasant addition.

"I think we will make the boys take a bath too," Sango said as she looked ahead. "Inuyasha at least sometimes jumps in rivers while passing them, I don't remember when Miroku had a real bath..."

"I think we could use a day for laundry and resting," Kagome nodded. "We're running out of clean clothes to wear... I think mjority of my blouses are going to become rags, the stains of blood and guts will never disappear..."

"Hey guys..." Shippou tensed on Kagome's shoulder. "Can you hear it?"

As they both paused they heard a ot too distant cry of despair, rage and embaressment. It changed in a howl of unfulfilled bloodlust.

"Inuyasha!" all three of them cried out and rushed in direction of the camp. Their weapons were there, but so did the enemy who was torturing their friend. Kagome's heart almost broke because Inuyasha practically roared just a moment before they entered the camp.

"Stop it! I'll kill ya!" and then, just as the three friends were stepping out from the treeline, they heard chuckles and a male voice replied in a manner indicating he was trying to sound like a female.

"Oh, Inuyasha, she breathed in his fuzzy ear before taking the tip of it in her mouth and sucking at it sensually..." Miroku read and giggled as he shot a glance at his hanyou friend sitting under a tree. Inuyasha had three sutras attached to his head and shoulders, rendering him motionless and able just to throw profanities in Miroku's direction or growling at him meancingly. Kagome realizd the three slips of paper were all that kept Inuyasha from being lethal and going on a mission of ripping the human to bloody bits. His face was red and twisted in embaressment and rage, his ears plastered against his skull, claws digging in the ground before him. Then Miroku stole her attention again, reading from her laptop, located in front of him as he was sitting near her backpack. His voice was most amused. "This made the hanyou growl in pleasure and he tightened his grip on the petite form of his little miko. Kagome moaned as he started to kiss the side of her neck and collarones, fangs scraping against her flushed skin..."

"What's happening here?" suddenly pale Sango gasped out, Kagome was too shocked and embaressed to do more than blush fiercely and move her lips inaudiably. Inuyasha's eyes widened when he noticed he and his tormentor were no longer alone in the camp, his face instantly matched his robes in color.

"Oh, hello, ladies. I merely read our hanyou friend some of the fic stories from the site lady Kagome showed us before your departure for the bath," Miroku beamed at them. "I found that you can find a lot of enjoyable stuff when you assure this device you're of age. A lot of... Content..." he wiggled a brow suggestively.

"Content?" Sango's brow went up, but for a different reason. She spared a glance at the hanyou and miko - the former was growling curses and straining to free himself, the latter was still petrified annd unable to provide explanation.

"Yes, dear Sango! There are many stories featuring our friends here getting... Very close and intimate together," Miroku nodded in enthusiasm, mischief twinkling in his eyes. "You should definetely see them... And the section of the page reserved for us, there are so many things too! It's most entertainging and educative!"

Kagome finally choked out a word none of her friends from the past understood. With an impressive speed she reached the hanyou and practically tore the sutras off his form. He visibly trembled before focusing his eyes on his prey. Then his ears swiveled in his direction.

Miroku suddenly felt a chill run down his spine. Then, as a wise man he was, he dashed off the meadow, jumping above bushes and almost running into trees.

"Why did he..." started Shippou looking after him, but then something red and white ran past him growling viciously. "Ah."

Kagome, trying to force her blush away, went to close her laptop.

"I must choose a password for this," she muttered more to herself than anyone else. And she had to see the browser's history.

A loud cry of: "Nononono, myfriendIjustwantedtohavesomefun, don'tberash!..." echoed through the forest. Kagome nodded to herself. She really had to see the browser's history.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was fuming. Kagome was sitting beside him, looking after a pair of women they had saved from being eaten by a tatami mat youkai (no, Kagome wasn't even a bit surprised a tatami mat had youki and had managed to support a mostly humanoid form to throw profanities at 'filthy humans stamping on his brethen and deserving to be devoured'. Kagome had had way too much encounters with weird youkai since her fiftenth birthday). For some strange reason the women had not screamed in fear while being carried away from the vile mat's nest - maybe a dog youkai seemed to them more like something closer to normality at that moment?

Kagome had stayed beside the women while Inuyasha had killed the malevolent being with a Wind Scar (he also desintegrated a path of ttrees, a couple of boulders and a chunk of a hillside, but this time they avoided casualties, so Kagome chalked it up as a success). She had been ready to explain to the women that Inuyasha had not meant them no harm and stuff, but she had found herself dumbfolded when the women had showed no sign of fear of the hanyou when he had approached them.

No, instead they went straight for his ears.

Inuyasha, this fierce, brave and valiant hanyou Kagome knew, wasted no time in putting Kagome in front of himself. It was such a youkai thing to use a living shield to save his sensitive fuzzy ears Kagome had had to waste a long moment to process the whole situation and reach her hands out to calm the women, tell them that the ears were off limits and that they were free to go home now. She also had asked the question that had caused Inuyasha's ire.

"Why aren't you scared of Inuyasha?" she had asked. The women looked at the half youkai who had been observing them warily, his arms crossed, his scowl prominent.

"We knew someone with such cute ears had to have a heart of gold," said one.

"And he came to save us from that terrible youkai, too!" the other had added with a warm smile. Then they had went away, leaving a pleasantly surprised miko and a fuming hanyou.

"Why are you so annoyed?" the miko asked her friend as she looked at him again.

"I ain't cute! And ain't having heart of gold!" he barked and stood up, looking away. "Come, we must find the others, they're taking too long to get here. I bet they found trouble."

"Awww, you're worried for them!" Kagome chuckled as she jumped to her feet and wrapped her hands around his arm. "My gold-hearted cute warrior..." she teased.

Chapter Text

Sesshomaru lifted his nose to scent the air. His ears moved lightly, catching all kinds of noises as he was standing on the top of a hill - a proud, magnificent dog. His fur was practically glowing in the light of the moon and he knew he was looking beautiful and terrifying at the same time. He was the great inu youkai, son of the Lady of the West and Great Dog General - a true Lord in his own right - there were only a few youkai of his level out there. He was strong, perfect in any way possible.

And he felt perfect - perfectly at peace, perfectly strong, holding much more wisdom than many youkai at his age would. He was proud of his achivements, knowing he gained what he had - was what he was - by his own strength, hard work and strong will. His mother had named him well.

And there was one more reason Lord Sesshomaru was feeling perfect at this very moment just before the dawn of a summer day.

"Lord Sesshomaru, look, the sky is brightening! Lord Inuyasha will be so angry with Rin that she delayed her return home so much!" exclaimed a young woman currently sitting on his back and holding fistfuls of his silvery ruff. Lord Sesshomaru would probably let the corners of his mouth go just a milimeter up in an expression of wide - well, in Lord Sesshomaru's way - grin. In this form he just let the tip of his tongue stick out a little from the side of his mouth. It was enough for Rin to see that he was in a wonderful mood and that he didn't care if Inuyasha was angry or not.

"Rin," he said, his voice low and rumbling like a distaant thunder. The woman smiled widely when she hard aa mischievous tone iin the way he spoke her name. Her lord was up to something.

"Yes, my lord?" she asked as she tilted her head.

"This one lied to you," he stated proudly and glanced back to see her reaction. He met confused eyes and continued. "The sunset from here isn't the most beautiful thing one can witness in this land. Rin should see the sunrise to witness the greatest beauty. Would Rin like to see the sunrise with this one?"

"Oh!" Rin's smile returned and she looked to the East. "Yes, my lord!"

With a smug grin - well, in his way - Sesshomaru turned his head away to look to the slowly brightening sky and the sun rising slowly. Rin was joyfully poiting all pretty colors to him and when sunlight bathed the hills around them she let out a cry of amazemet.

Flowers were opening their petals when Lord Sesshomaru was walking through the forest, holding Rin's hand to support her - there were roots and rocks hidden under the thick grass and he was quite determined not to let her trip. She was admiring the beauty of nature in silence now, a serene smile on her lips, her fingers warm in his hand. They both froze when a flash of red and white caught their eyes. Sesshomaru took a discreet inhale to judge who it was before turning in that direction.

Inuyasha walked from beside a tree from which he jumped a second ago. He folded his arms in his sleeves and glared at his brother, a deep scowl on his face.

"You're late. You were supposed to be back just after sunset," he said grumpily. Rin blushed while Lord Sesshomaru merely arched a brow.

"Please, don't be angry, lord Inuyasha," the girl pleaded. "The sunset was so pretty and then we went for a walk, and then we swent to see the sunrise, and..." she stopped babbling when she saw the hanyou roll his eyes.

"Keh! Just remember to tell Kagome you won't return before morning next time you're going for this date thing," his left ear swiveled backwards and he looked back at his brother. "Or Kagome will make a set of beads for you too."

"Hm," Lord Sesshomarun said as he noticed a woman in miko robes walking through the forest. He said nothing more but turned around and left. Knowing his half-brother's mate she had the beads made long ago.

Chapter Text

They were hunting, exploring the area of their temporary nest. Both of them clad in dark green clothes had no problem to hide in plain sight, sneak through tall grass of the meadow they were in.

The went pass the monk meditating under an oak, the man had no idea that someone went past him.

They moved past the youkai slayer, which was a much harder task - the slayer was almost always alert, listening to the sounds around her and checking all little movements in the grass. Yet today her guard was down - she felt safe sitting on a blanket in the shade of the same oak tree shielding the monk from the hot sun of the summer. She was focused on her sewing, repairing her battle outfit, bitting the tip of her tongue while working.

They looked at each other and nodded - this was their chance to go along their plan. Their targets were so close, unaware of their presence and vulnerable. It would be a child's play to catch the two little thingies, so cute and defenseless, alluring and oh-so-close. The pair of hunters was observing their prey for a long minute, observing slow, lazy movements of their targeets, mesmerizied by them. Then the right time to strike came - they couldn't risk the monk or the slayer noticing them. They had only one chance, so they had to do it fast and right. Their hands outstretched from behind the veil of grass and grasped each one of their targets.

A loud scream of pain and shock filled the heavy hot air of a summer afternoon.

"Holy shit!" roared Inuyaha, pulled out from his slumber. Literally pulled.

Two feminine giggles replied to his enraged voice and his eyes looked up where two toddlers were kneeling above his head, each holding - and squeezing! - one of his ears while babbling happily. In an instant the two clawed hands froze mid-gesture and dropped to his sides as the hanyou lay in the grass, petrified. There was no way he would grab the girls, he could hurt them!

"Miroku!" he almost whined when one of the twins pulled harder.

"Omm, I'm a lotus flower drifting on a surface of a lake..." Miroku uttered, amusement clear in his voice, not moving a muscle. "Omm!"

"Ow! Saaango!" Inuyasha pleaded.

"I am busy here," she replied calmly, just a hint of amusement in her tone. She didn't even lift her gaze from her work when he cursed again. "You are more than capable of freeing yourself. You won't hurt them just by touching them, Inuyasha."

"But...!" both girls tweaked his ears mercilessly and this made the hanyou lose the last bits of the fear that he could hurt the toddlers with his claws - he had to save his ears *now*. Deftly he grasped their little hands and pulled them away from his poor ears, using his speed as an element of surprise. He didn't have to use force to make them let go of him. Quickly he sat up, glaring at the kids. "How something so small can have such strong grip?" his ears were twitching in irritation and pain while the babies were giving literally no shit about the growling irate hanyou in front of them. Both had their eyes trained on his ears, hands outstretched in their direction, an expression of utter longing on their little faces.

"Inu! Inu!" they exclaimed. Wide golden eyes looked up from them to their parents. Miroku was staring back while Sango smiled at the hanyou.

"At least their first words isn't something perverted," she commented with some amount of relief in her voice.

"Inu!" Inuyasha gazed back to the kids, pride and joy of his friends who had left him alone in his time of need. An idea of revenge came to his mind. A wicked youkai smile appeared on his lips when he leant a little forward and swiveled his ears.

"Say keh!" he purred.

Chapter Text

Sango woke up and realized it was almost midday - how could she sleep in like this? Where was Inuyasha to laugh at her laziness? Where was Miroku to tea-

The slayer tensed when she felt that she wasn't alone in her bed. She wanted to jump from under her blankets and strangle the man who snored softly and pulled her closer to himself when she moved.

When she was turning around to see who was going to die painfully in a few minutes something white caught her eye. She looked up. A bunch of dried herbs was hanging from the ceiling - a gift from Kaede for good luck. A strip of white fabric - a male's underwear - was hanging from it. 'How did it get there?' Sango wondered, for a second forgetting about the man in her bed. Then he murmured something under his breath and Sango looked at him, bloodllust returning to her eyes.

Dark bangs were falling on his face, his expression peaceful as he was resting his head on her pillow, a small smile gracing his lips. The sight of that smile made Sango's memories return to her in an instant.

The previous evening she had became a married woman and this man was her to keep, to love, to tame. As soon as she thought that her cheeks became red and her gaze drifted up to the lucky herbs.

"Good morning, my dearest," a soft kiss was placed on her cheek. Sango turned her head back to her husband just to see his smile widening and his drowsy eyes looking back at her. His grip on her tightened and she suddenly realized they were naked under the fur of a bear - a gift from Inuyasha.

"G-ood day..." Sango said softly.

"I had the most amazing dream," he confessed. "I dreamed about two beautiful girls, twins of immense beauty," he continued. Sango blinked, then scowled, but he didn't notice, his eyes unfocused. "I held them to my chest, close, close... Just like I hold you, my dearest Sango..."

She decided to strangle her husband. That wouldn't be a good start of her married life, but she didn't care. Did he really had no tact? If he had had a dream about other women - during their first night as a married couple! - could he spare her the knowledge?

"They had your starry eyes," he continued and this made the slayer froze before reaching for her wakizashi. "I'd love to call them Towairaito and Yoake... What do you think, beloved, would those names be nice for our daughters?"

Sango decided that - just this once - she would spare the monk and not strangle him with his underwear.

Chapter Text

It was a market day and there were stalls and tables located along the main road through the village. People from neighbouring villages and a few from much farther locations were showing and selling their stuff - fabrics, sandals, yukatas, vegetables, rice, bowls, spoons, various blends of tea and much more was laid out on their tables or hanging from racks. Everyone was joyful and talking while buying stuff or just watching it.

Rin was one of those doing mostly watching. She had no money to buy stuff, she didn't need much. She could find food in the forest, her lord was seeing to her being clad properly, there was no house for her to gather things to being to. Her lord's palace was full of much prettier things anyway.

Still, everything was fascinating and Rin was curious about so many things. And since Jaken was busy somewhere and her lord was visiting an ally in a forest nearby Rin had a lot of free time to watch stuff. Ah-Un were following her closely, making sure the girl was safe. People around did their best to pretend there was no dragon-like two-headed youkai following a little girl like a puppy. The said girl went to a stall where hair pins and combs were laid out on a red fabric. A middle-aged woman was carving a comb while waiting for customers. She spared a glance at Rin.

"Would you like to buy something, girl?" she asked, but Rin shook her head.

"Rin just wants to look at the combs," the girl confessed, embaressed. "She has no money, but things here are so pretty!"

The woman smiled at her praise and looked at the girl again. She looked so innocent and there was no parent or sibling with her.

"Are you alone here?"

"Rin has no family," the girl said. "But she can take care of herself and she can always count on her lord and Ah-Un," she smiled and the woman's eyes widened when her gaze followed the little finger pointing to a youkai standing nearby, partially hidden behid a rack with pans. The woman spent an hour talking to the orphan girl with a youkai as a guardian - she could relate to Rin since she was an orphan as well until she had found a new family.

"Rin," came a cold voice and suddenly both the craftswoman and the girl looked up from the comb the former was carving with a small knife. An another youkai was standing before the stall - a silver haired man in white, his golden eyes emotionless and expression lacking emotions, a fluffy thing hanging from his shoulder.

"My lord!" Rin greeted cheerfully. "Lady Asuka was telling Rin about making combs!"

"I see. Come, Rin, we need to leave," the youkai said. The girl smiled widely at the woman before taking a few steps to follow the man. Asuka licked her lips as she saw the girl look at her combs with longing while passing by them.

"Wait!" she called out. The pair stopped. "Rin, if you want to I can give you one of my combs, as a gift to remember me by." She didn't have anything to call her own, an orphan following a cold youkai. Maybe a comb of a friendly stranger could help her keep this innocent, precious smile forever. "Please, pick one."

Rin looked at her lord who just nodded. The girl looked again at the combs and bit her bottom lip, choosing. Then she picked one of Asuka's old ones, not really pretty or detailed.

"Rin would like to take this one," she said in a small voice. "It reminds her of her lord."

"Oh, are you sure? It's an old work, I had just started and I couldn't carve emotions well..." she looked up and met golden eyes of the youkai before looking back to the comb with a cat face - the animal was supposed to smile, but the curve of its mouth was just not right to indicate a smile. "Oh, well, you're right, Rin. It is yours."

"Thank you!" Rin hugged the woman before running to join her lord. Sesshomaru looked down at the comb she was gripping. A small smirk appeared on his lips.

"Rin, you made a friend," he noticed.

"Yes, my lord!" she said cheerfully and looked from her smiling lord to her smilling cat comb.

Chapter Text

Kagome was not in the best of moods. Kouga came to see them again and Inuyasha was angry and annoying - again.

"Ya don't love her, ya don't even spend much time with 'er!"

"I love you, Kagome! Let me prove it to you! I'll do anything you want!"

"Okay. Stand on your head," Kagome demanded of the wolf. The gang stared at her in shock that she didn't try to calm down the arguing men. Even Inuyasha went silent and looked at her in surprise. Kouga, on the other hand, grinned and nodded.

"As you wish, Kagome," he said and followed her order. Both inugang and Kouga's pack of wolves stared at him standing on his head and smiling smugly. To his surprise Kagome went pale, then red, then turned around. Sango gulped and did the same. Miroku grinned and Inuyasha simply stared at him dumbly.

"Now, Inuyasha," said Miroku, "Would you grow up to the challenge and do the same?"

"You mean stand on my head without my hakama on?" Inu asked and raised an eyebrow. Kagome made a choked noise. "No, thanks, I'll pass on this one."

"Oi, dog breath! I don't wear ha- Oh, shit!" Kouga realized his skirt went down (or up, depending from which angle you were looking at it) and he, as a proud leader of a wolf pack,was not wearing anything under it.

Chapter Text

A holy man was walking through a village one sunny, hot summer day. He was clad in his usual black ad purple robes, his staff in his hand, a charming smile on his lips as he was walking down the main road. The villagers were greeting him when he was passing them, many women laughing at his innocent attempts to flirt with them. Everyone in the village knew that their resident monk would never go further than to flatter a pretty girl.

Not with a taijiya wife.

Miroku was returning from a nearby village where he and his friend had dealt with an inu youkai. It had been entertaining to watch the inu hanyou putting a full youkai to submission and ordering him to leave that village and find some other place to live and dig huge holes.

Inuyasha had not expected the dog to follow him like a lost puppy straight to his own house. When Miroku had left Inuyasha's hut Kagome had been giggling and scolding her husband for brining home "another one who would want his ears scratched." At which Inuyasha had roared: "Don't you dare scratch his ears!"

It seemed next couple of days would be... Entertaining.

He had to tell Sango, she'd love to see the new resident of their village. 'I wonder if Inuyasha lets him stay,' he mused while approaching his hut. 'Probably not, but until he leaves it can be fun to... Observe pack behaviors...'

He heard Sango singing, her lovely voice coming from the small yard behind the hut. The monk rested his staff against the wall beside the door and went around the house to lay eyes - and hopefully hands - on his lovely nightingale.

Sango was washing in a big bowl of water, hanging her laundry on a line between two trees. She was singing a happy song with soft melody, meant to lull their little son to sleep in his nest of blankets under one of the trees. The twins were probably playing with Rin.

"My beloved wife - I'm back!" Miroku said and saw Sango spun around, a dagger in her hand. Upon seeing him the woman put her weapon in her obi and walked to stand in front of her husband, tilting her head up.

"Miroku..." she breathed out, her beautiful eyes full of longing and happiness. He felt like the luckiest man in the world every time she was looking at him with that little smile, with those starry eyes...

Sango rested her both hands on his chest and stood on her toes to press a kiss to his lips. It was full of passion, a little rough and more than welcome. Miroku found himself placing his hands around her waist and retutning her kiss with all he had.

Suddenly he didn't feel hot or tired anymore. The inu youkai and Inuyasha's annoyance were no longer of importance. There was only Sango, her soft lips against his, her lean body pressed so intimately against his, her cool hands tugging on his robe... 'Yes, my love, too many clothes...'

There were many wonders in the world, but Miroku was pretty sure his wife was the most wonderful one. She knew him so well, knew what he craved after a long, tiring quest full of unexpected things... She pulled at his bottom lip with her teeth while freeing him from his dirty clothes. Oh, she had been such a shy maiden, but once she had married him it all changed. Miroku groaned when he felt her cool hands roam across his torso and pull his robe off his shoulders, her fingers deft and moving with grace. The warm air caressed the naked skin of his upper body but it was nothing compared to her fingers dancing across it when she pulled his clothes to reveal even more of him. Now it was time to take off his bottoms and Miroku hoped his lovely wife wouldn't make him wait long, it was growing pretty tight. His grip on her tightened, then loosened when she stepped back and gave him a sly smirk, still holding his robes.

"Go dress yourself properly, monk," his wife said before turning to her washing and throwing his robe in the water.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha entered Kagome's house and stopped right behind the door.

A string of something was hanging from the chandelier, dangling before his eyes. The hanyou took a sniff and tilted his head to the side. Kagome's family appeared to be gone for a day and it was only the time-traveling miko who was in the house. She was upstairs - in her old room to be precise.

The string was a noodle - Inuyaasha followed its length up to find that the noodle was tied to another and then another. A rope born of noodles was hanging from the chanderlier to the lowest post of the staircase, following the railing up and then disappearing above Kagome's doors which were not shut closed.

Puzzled the hanyou followed the noodle trail and carefully opened the door to peek in.

Kagome was laying on her bed, asleep. The hanyou carefully stepped inside the room and looked around - the noodle rope was ending in a knot tied around one of the bedposts. Whatever Kagome had been up to before falling asleep he as sure it was crazy.

What sane person would waste so many noodles to mark the trail he knew so well?

The hanyou glanced at his soon-to-be wife sleeping so peacefully. She was resting on her side, curled in a ball, a small smile on her lips. Inuyasha walked to her bed and carefully crawled behind her to stretch his body on the soft bedding and wrap an arm around his favourite miko. To his joy she snuggled closer to him, pressing herself against him and sighing happily. He leaned over her and nibbled her ear gently

Kagome tensed a little.

"You waasted a lot of noodles," he scolded playfully, whispering straight to her ear.

"Whatever, it served its purpose," she muttered and relaxed against him again.

"Huh?" he blinked at the girl who wrapped his arm around herself tighter. gripping his clawed hand with no fear.

"You're here."

Chapter Text

Kagome was thanking all gods she could think of that she wasn't alone. She barely knew the other woman - a beautiful girl with brown hair and honest smile - but it was still nice to have a companion. The woman was just a little older than herself and her name was Sango. She was a skilled warrior, trained to exterminate vile youkai - according to Sango it was a family tradition.

Kagome knew family traditions all to well - she herself was from family of mikos and priests. She had been living in her family shrine her entire life, under care of her mother and great aunt Kaede - the former sharing with her all knowledge and skill a young woman should possess while the latter teaching her how to use her immense spiritual powers.

Now Kagome had no one of her family at her side to guide her, she was an adult, independent woman after all, a well-trained priestess. Too independent and too strong willed to be a housewife. That was why Kagome had decided to be a miko - mikos were allowed much more freedom in society, they could work and earn money without being looked down at, carry weapons walk around without a companion or even be alone in company of men not related by blood.

And Kagome wanted to do just that. That was why she was now sitting in a carriage approaching highly secured Musashi station. That was why she was making sure she was looking her best in the traditional miko attire. That was why she was anxious and excited. And, by look of it, Sango had the same feelings - the youkai slayer was holding the hilt of her short sword tightly, looking around with wide opened eyes. They had talked before, but now they both were too nerous to continue a conversation, all their thoughts focused on the job which was awaiting them.

The carriage stopped and a man opened the door.

"Ladies, we arrived at Musashi station," he said quietly. He offered his hand to help them get out of the vehicle and stepped aside, letting them see the station itself.

It was a big field, flat and covered in grass, a thick wire fence surrounding it. There were also buildings in the eastern corner of the field, near the gate beside which their carriage stood - a tall tower watching over a huge shed and an ellegant building meant for travellers to rest and wait in. The only trees and bushes were growing around them - all groomed and in perfect condition. She noticed guards - youkai and humans in black outfits - standing on both sides of the gate and patrolling the whole place in pairs. Everything was huge, but nothing could measure up in size against the zeppelin of enormous size in the westeern part of the field. Kagome gasped, unable to look away from it.

"And this is Ah-Un, Lord of the Western Youkai's private airship," the man chuckled softly. "Pride of Totosai Corporation."

"I saw it in a newspaper, but the picture didn't prepare me for the size of it," Sango confessed. The man shrugged and turned to a tanuki running from the tower to their small group.

"I think mister Hachi will explain everything to you. Have a good day, miss Higurashi and miss Taijiya."

"Thank you," Kagome bowed politely. The women watched the tanuki approach them - he seemed to be an easy-going person, wearing a wide smile and bowing to them. He was dressed in black uniform with red crescent moons on his collar - nn outfit of a medium rank servant of the West.

"Good day to you, miss Higurashi and miss Taijiya, I am Hachi of Tanuki Clan and today I will be your guide," the youkai said in a kind voice. Kagome relaxed a bit - meeting youkai was usually a stressful thing to her since mikos were often actively working to kill them - at least those who were unwilling to fit in the mixed society. Still, many youkai living peacefully alongside humans, didn't like mikos. Or youkai slayers. It was nice to see their guide had no hate for people of their professions.

After exchanging pleasantries the tanuki led the two young women in direction of the shadow cast by the zeppelin. From closer distance Kagome could see that the gondola was covered in ornaments resembling dragon scales and other features. The balloon was painted - it was the dragon's wings, spread proudly above it. It had to look stunning in the air.

A few mem were working around Ah-Un, but none stopped to watch two laies following the tanuki up a set of movable stairs and into the luxorious looking contraption. Hachi was a perfect guide - talking all the time and only sometimes letting his followers ask questions. He told them how happy he was that master Jaken had chosen them from all the candidates applying. He told them a lot about various parst of Ah-Un, filling their heads with terms and complicate descriptions. And all of it while walking, showing them where the passangers would stay. where were private Lord's rooms, where the kitchesn and pilot's chamber were, where technicians had their mechanisms and tools...

...And suddenly they were in front of plain brown door.

"Well, and rhere's the security room," the tanuki said and looked at the girls before opening the door and leading them in.

"...And when she tripped I saw her calf!"

"You're sick, Miroku."

Kagome looked around a room with simple, practical furniture and walls painted brown, a board hanging on one wall, a few closed cabinets and shelves located around the room, but almost all of it wasn't registered because of the end of the conversation she heard. Her eyes rested on a man sitting beside a table under an opened window. He was handsome, his black hair were tied in a short ponytail, his black uniform hugging his body in a way which would make almost all Kagome's friends blush and sigh in awe. His dark eyes had sparks of excitement when he looked at the newcomers.

The other man was sitting on the windowsill, his back turned at the room. All Kagome could see was a waterfall of silver bound with red scarf on the nape of his neck. To her surprise he had also white furry ears on top of his head - he was a youkai, which was not surprising since many humans and youkai were serving under Lord of the West. It was just rare to see a white dog, Kagome knew only about two inu youkai, one being the Lord of the West himself and another his younger brother about whom she heard just rumors. He had a katana on his hip.

"Oh, goodness!" the black-haired man exclaimd and jumped to his feet to greet them. "Two most beautiful women of Japan graced our humble selves with their presence! Pray, tell me, fair ladies, what can we do for you today? Hachi, is there any problem?" he looked at all three of them with a wide, charming smile. Both women blushed and were unsure how to answer, not used to such flattery.

"Those are miss Kagome Higurashi who is a miko and miss Sango Taijiya who is a youkai slayer," Hachi introduced them properly. "They're the new security officers. Ladies, this is mister Miroku, our monk and... Inuyasha of the West, the head of Ah-Un's security team."

Both women greeted Miroku with a smile, but upon hearing the name Hachi uttered next Kagome's gaze drifted to the white-haired man, who turned to look at them. She felt her heart skip a beat when their eyes met - her dark brown, his bright amber. He was probably more handsome than Miroku, but the scowl he had on his face was making him appear annoyed and unapproachable. His ears swiveled her way even when he turned to look at the tanuki.

"Hachi, if Sesshomaru hears you calling me that he'll gut you," Inuyasha warned and jumped inside the room. As soon as he stood on the floor he folded his arms in front of his chest and eyed the women, tilting his head a little. Kagome knew he was examining them, so she didn't look away from him, showing him she was not afraid. Both Inuyasha and Miroku had crescent moons, but white instead of red - it was a sign of their high rank.

"So you will work with us?" Miroku asked the girls.

"Yes, we are determined to do our best," Sango gave a nod of affirmation.

"That's wonderful! Miss Sango, miss Kagome, I am here if you need anything, all you need is to ask and all I require as a payment is a chance to press my..." a clawd hand clasped on his mouth prevented him from saying another word. Inuyasha growled at his partner.

"Don't listen to him, he's a lech," Inuyasha said. "If he offends you or something just kick his ass, I'm sure you can fight, you'd not get this work otherwise. He won't do anythin', just talks like a moron."

"Mmmf!" disagreed Miroku.

Kagome wasn't sure at which man she should stare - at the monk trying to free his head from the iron grip of his youkai partner or at the youkai himself. She had heard that the Lord's younger brother was an brash and rude person, but she had never dreamt about meeting him - and in the Lord's security service! She chose to stare at the latter, finding his intense yellow eyes and twitching fuzzy ears much more appealing that the former man's features.

"Have a problem with hanyou, miko?" he growled at her, obviously unhappy of her stare. Kagome blinked and blushed, looking down immediately.

"I'm sorry, I was just surprised by your statement," she said softly. "I bear no ill will towards youkai or hanyou," she added. It was pretty obvious, the daiyoukai wouldn't allow a youkai-hating human work for him because he hated when his servants were wasting energy for hating each other. Sango quickly added her own apology, Kagome realized the other woman probably had been staring as well. She prayed Sango's stare target wasn't the cute-eared man in front of them.

"We will remember your advice, Inuyasha," Sango added and looked at Miroku who sighed.

"I'm not that bad..."

"Yes, you are," Hachi voiced his opinion on the matter and visibly shrank when Miroku glared at him. "You will take each of our new security officers as your partners for the next month, so they can get used to everything, master Jaken suggests that miss Higurashi should work with Inuyasha and miss Taiyija with you, Miroku. This way Ah-Un will be always protected by a person wielding spiritual power and a fighter."

The group of four people he was talking to looked at each other, Kagome felt a new wave of excitement and had to swallow a giggle when she saw his ears swived her way.

"Ah-Un is leaving in two hours, maybe we could go and have some lunch?" Miroku suggested.

"That sounds nice," Sango agreed. "We could discuss our duties and learn a little about each other."

"Better grab something to eat before Sesshomaru arrives from his meeting with the human government," Inuyasha turned to the window. "Rin is with him so I'm pretty sure someon will try to attack us on the way to the Sky Palace," he glanced at three humans and the tanuki. "I caught scent of some ugly youkai some time earlier."

"What type?" Sango asked. Everyone knew one could trust an inu youkai's nose.

"Birds. So... I'll order chicken for everyone, get going, we'll meet in the restaurant," with those words he leapt out of the room, leaving the rest of Ah-Un's crew to stare after him through the window.

"Chicken, huh? Ladies, shall we follow our dog-eared friend?" Miroku said with a wide smile

"Um, yes, but let's use the door," Kagome uttered.

Chapter Text

A goddess was laying her divine body on a futon, her beauty concealed by a blanket. She was taking a nap after lunch, finding peace and silence in the safety of the shadowy sanctuary of her bedchamber.

Her most devoted worshipper entered the sanctuary on silent feet, closing the door behind himself silently, not daring to disturb the deity he loved with all his heart. He walked to lit a candle to chase the evening shadows away and to be able to see the divine being. A little bitter smell of smoke filled the small space of the place he thought about as the inner shrine of his goddess.

The man approached then his deity, moving carefully on his hands and knees until he was kneeling beside her futon. He gently pulled the blanket down, revealing the naked skin of her back until the edge of the fabric was lower than her rear. He picked up a small jar of flower smelling herbal oil and poured some on his hands. He rubbed his palms to warm it before resting them against her soft skin and firm muscles.

He was worshipping his divine woman only for a minute before she started to hum and murmur in pleasure, stretching her back under his gentle hands. She was a warrior goddess and just a few hours ago had returned to the village from her heavelny travel to a nearby valley to put an end to havoc caused by a youkai. The vile, vile beast had dared to cause her harm, now her back was sore and Miroku could see a few bruises as he moved her hair away from her back - the right side of her back was dark pink, promising to turn violet.

He ran his oil-coated hands over the bruised section of her body, trying to spread the herbal mix over her skin and bring her some relief. He hoped it would cause her soreness and bruises to disappear as fast as possible so her divine self would be not marred by them anymore. Not that bruises could make her less beautiful - she was perfect no matter what. She was fair even when she was covered in blood of her enemies, their guts, foam from laundry or flour from baking with Kagome. His hands slipped down, squeezing the exquisite roundness of her rear.

"What are you doing, monk?" the goddess asked in a silent voice.

"Worshipping the divine body of my beloved goddess," he replied, his voice low. Being exposed to the lovely view of his celestial lady and touching her warm, soft skin was not helping him to remain calm. On the contrary, the slow strokes of his hands up and down her back, across her firm muscles, were making it hard to focus on his task. All he wanted was to kneel behind her, betweel her long, muscular legs and lean over her to rub the oil in her back with his bare chest in slow, sensual strokes until she would demand of him a change of pace. 'I would always do my best to satisfy my heavenly beauty,' he thought and realized that while daydreaming he was massaging her southern regions. To his surprise it was making his goddess of a woman gasp and hum as much as before.

"You're overdressed," she pointed out.

"I shall fix it, oh, heavely one," he promised. Her eyes were full of mishief.

"Where are the kids?"

"With Kagome and Inuyasha. Kagome had told me they'll return tomorrow morning. She said the oil cam have... Nice side effects," he said while running his fingertips up her spine. She stretched under his gentle touch.

"Mmm, I see. Wise is our young miko," Sango moaned softly. "How often did she say you should apply the oil?"

"She didn't say," he massaged her shoulders in slow motions. "She just said 'have fun'."

"Hmmm... You're still overdressed."

o0o

"So..." Inuyasha asked the next morning upon meeting Miroku. The monk looked as if he had not slept much last night. The hanyou could only hope Sango's bruises weren't that bad or that Kagome's secret herbal oil would heal her quickly. "Did you give the herbal oil stuff to Sango?"

"Yes, I offered my celestial goddess the offering lady Kagome gave me," Miroku replied with a wide, bright smile. "Multiple times." Inuyasha shrugged.

"And how does she feel? Is it helping on her sore muscles and bruises?" he asked, trying to sound gruff but failing miserably. He was concerned for his friend.

"The goddess was most pleased with the offering and I, her most devoted worshipper, was graced by happiness," Miroku stated with a serene expression on his face. Inuyasha frowned.

"Are we still talking about Sango's herbal oil? Or did you really went to the shrine to offer that stuff in hope that the gods would heal her faster?"

"I visited the heavens this night, Inuyasha," Miroku confessed. Inuyasha arched a brow at him, then shook his head.

"Someone got lucky tonight," Kagome approached them, surrounded by Miroku's kids. "See, your daddy is here to take you home, sweeties!"

Miroku bowed deeply before the wise miko who had gave him the best offering he could give his divine lady before his offspring practically dragged him home.

Chapter Text

It was a lazy, hot day and Bankotsu was enjoying himself. He was resting in tall grass, watching birds fly above him and sing their silly songs. His brothers were spending their free time in any way they pleased.

Ginkotsu was polishing his weapons while sitting with his back against Renkotsu's shed. Jakotsu was cutting leaves from treetops with his sword after sparring with the huge Kyokotsu who was now repairing his cut clothes while Mukotsu was treating a few cuts Jakotsu had made on his arms and legs. Suikotsu was sitting under a plum tree and desperately trying to write haiku.

Everything was at peace, calm and serene. A perfect day to just laze around.

Until Renkotsu ran out of his shed.

"Get down!" he roared and ducked behind a big barrel conviniently standing near the shed. Everyone instinctively followed the order.

The air shook when the shed exploded.

Bankotsu sighed.

Yup, a perfectly normal day in Band of Seven's headquarters.

Chapter Text

Kagome entered her house and sighed, breathing in the cool air inside. She wasn't sure how hot it actually was outside, but she felt as if the air was boiling. She went to the kitchen to put bags with all she bought on the counter for her mother to put away.

"Hi, mom," she smiled to her mother who was stirring something smelling suspiciously like ramen. "Is Inuyasha here?"

"Hello, darling. Yes, he's helping grandpa with chores," the woman smiled widely. "Your friends came to visit, I told them to wait for you in your room."

Kagome smiled and went up the stairs, glad that her grandfather was taking care of the trouble attracting hanyou. She could relax and spend a while with her friends before being dragged to Feudal Era. Kagome stopped before the half-opened door to her room because she heard Eri's excited squeal.

"See?"

"Oh, goodness, he carries the box as if it is nothing!" Ayumi's voice was full of wonder. Kagome gulped and stormed in - no one of her three friends noticed her, all three of them pusing their faces against the glass of her window, their eyes trained on something outside. Kagome came to stand behind the trio and looked outside herself, standing on her toes to look above Yuka's head.

Inuyasha was walking in the direction of a pile of chests and boxes he had brought out the shed. He had a huge box on his shoulder, balancing it easily while walking, his head turned back to talk something to her grandfather who was following him with a broom in his hands. Inuyasha bent down to put the box on top of an old chest, but pause at something her grandfather said. Still bent he took a step to the side and lowered the box on the grass. Kagome swallowed.

Her favourite hanyou was wearing a bandana to cover his ears and keep his hair from falling over his shoulders. So there were only his forelocks to obscure the sight. It seemed the heat of the day was bothering him because he had left his robe and white kosode hanging from the opened door of the shed. Mesmerized, Kagome was watching muscles moving under tanned skin of his back when he was straightening his back. Of course she had seen him only in his hakama many times, but usually he was drenched in blood and had multiple wounds she had to take care of. Now there were no injures, no blood, only golden skin and muscles stretching under it. There was a predatory grace in his movements when he was walking back to the shed, unaware of four girls watching his every move, every swing of his silvery mane, gesture of his hands when he was talking with the old man beside him, frowning at the tall youth.

"Oh, Kagome!" Yuka looked up only when they both disappeared inside of the shed. "You're back!"

"I'm back for a while now," Kagome said dryly, scowling at her friends, who were now looking at her more or less embarrassed.

"We totally understand why you keep him around," Yuka said with a wink. Eri giggled.

"We... Um..." Ayumi smiled ar Kagome. "We came to see you."

"Yeah, I noticed," Kagome sighed. It was not like she was annoyed that they had been staring at Inuyasha and drooling... Eri glanced in the window and almost pushed the glass off.

"Guys! He's back!"

Kagome chuckled when she approached the window once again to look with her friends at the silver-haired man. Her chuckles died down when she saw Inuyasha running from the shed, an old katana in his grip. He lightly jumped at the pile of boxes, laughing at the old man running after him, still holding his broom.

"This is a priceless family heirloom, give it back!" Kagome's grandpa's scream was easy to hear even through a closed window. Inuyasha threw his head back, laughing like a vile youkai. Kagome slid open her window, almost squeezing Yuka's fingers.

"Inuyasha!" she called Inuyasha immediately turned to face her, his eyes lighting up as he spotted her among her friends. When Kagome's grandfather swung his broom the hanyou didn't duck his head and...

Crack! The broomstick broke while the hanyou yelped and fell off the pile of boxes. Kagome cried out and ran donwstairs to rescue him.

Chapter Text

Jaken was talking about something he deemed important. Ah-Un was the only one actually listening to him, well, at least one of his heads was. They were following their lord as he was walking up a hillside.

It was a breautiful summer day and lord Sesshomaru was mildly pleased with the beauty of the land he was crossing - the West seemed to bloom and bear fruits everywhere around them. The daiyoukai was pleased to see that his lands was in such a good condition - no struggles, no fights, no havoc. At least among the youkai, the humans living in this area was below his concern. They could wage wars and kill each other and the great dog youkai wouldn't even raise a brow.

There was only one human being he had warmer feeligs towards - a girl sleeping on Ah-Un's back, her dark hair swaying with his every step. Lord Sesshomaru spared a glance at the girl, always so cheerful, so eager to see good sides of everything.

"Stay." the daiyoukai said and while Jaken had to trip over Ah-Un's tail to stop moving the dragon just ceased walking. Lord Sesshomaru waled to the top of the hill and looked at the landscape stretched under his feet.

A gust of wind caressed his cheek, pushed his hair back from his eyes, ruffled his fur.

It was like a playful hand of a woman touching her beloved for the first time, exploring his features with cool fingertips, running her nimble fingers through his hair. Sesshomaru closed his eyes to the image of the sunset coloring the land in oranges and golds. He could see red of the sunlight through his eyelids - the red so similar to red eyes of the woman he wouldn't see again. In his imagination her eyes didn't look agnry or frustrated, nor were they indifferent. There was a spark of playfullness in them. As a new gust of wind blew and played with his loose robes Sesshomaru sighed quietly. The wind sorcesress was no longer, but her image was lingering in his mind, haunting him. She was free from Naraku now, she was the wind. She had no body, no hands to reach and touch him.

And yet, sometimes when he was alone and looking at sun disappearing behind the horizon or flowers swaying in a light breeze, he felt as if she was right in front of him. If he closed his eyes the vision of her smirking face would come to his mind. If he stayed still...

The wind caressed his cheek.

Chapter Text

It was another peaceful evening for the rag tag group of friends. Naraku was gone, hidden in some unknown location, even his incarnations were hard to find the last few days. The summer was slowly turning into autumn. Shippou was coloring peacefully, his back resting against Kirara's side as the transformed cat was sunbathing in the rays of the sun hanging just above the horizon. Kagome looked at Sango and Miroku engaged in a heated discussion about personal space and why Miroku's hands shouldn't be in Sango's personal space. The young miko sighed and stood up from her spot near the fire of their little camp in the forest.

"I'll go fetch Inuyasha," she said to her friends. "He's taking oddly long to catch fish for our dinner."

"Okay, Kagome," Sango smiled warmly. The young miko nodded and went in direction of a small lake hidden between the hills, just a short walk away from their meadow. Kagome was walking quietly, looking around herself, admiring the beauty of the nature around her, not touched by humans' hands. Suddenly she heard a splash and became aware how close she was to the lake. It was just behind a thick path of bushes. She moved closer to the bushes and moved their branches to look through them to see what made the splash.

Who.

Kagome swallowed when she saw Inuyasha swimming through crystal clear water of the lake, silver hair floating behind the doggy paddling hanyou. The time-travelling miko used all her willpoer to stop blushing and peel her eyes away from the view of her friend obviously enjoying a refreshing swim after a long, hot day. She managed to spot a pile of fish nearby on the shore, under a tree where Inuyasha's robes were hanging. She was thinking what she should do - leave or make him know she was here for the fish and to call him back to the camp? As she was pondering this and keeping her eyes trained at the bush in front of her.

"Oi!" her eyes flew up at the rough voice of the hanyou and focused on him. He was standing in the water fairly far from the shore, the liquid reaching high enough to cover his southern regions, but doing nothing to obscure the upper body of the man currently scowling and crossing his arms in front of himself. Kagome was about to apologize, blusing fiercely at being discovered, but then she noticed his golden eyes weren't focused on her. She followed his gaze to see he was looking in the direction of the fish pile and his robes.

Which were held by a woman in green kimono. The woman was looking at Inuyasha with an expression on her face which made Kagome growl deep in her throat as if she was an inu youkai herself. How did she dare to spy on Inuyasha like this and grab his precious robe?

"What do ya think ya're doin'?" Inuyasha demanded. The woman rolled his robe and started to stuff it in a bag she was carrying.

"Celestial lad, I have your heavenly robe. Now you must marry me," she stated smugly.

"What?!" Inuyasha barked. "I ain't a celestial anything, wench! Gimme back my clothes before I come there and shred you, human!"

He had no chance to say anything more.

o0o

Sango and Kagome were sitting on both sides of the woman in green kimono, the former eyeing warily the monk stirring their fish soup while the latter was tending to the woman's bruises. The woman was telling them her story - she had been on her way to a nearby village when she had stumbled upon a celestial being bathing in the lake. She had been stunned by his silver hair and wonderfully shaped body, so she had looked for his heavenly robe. Upon finding it she had told the being he was bound to marry her, as it was in legends. Miroku and Sango looked at each other before turning their gazes in the direction of their hanyou friend sulking on a high tree branch far enough that they couldn't see him in the darkness of the evening.

"...As soon as I told him that, something attacked me," the woman continued. "I could feel such a violent aura radiating from it. I think it was a terrible youkai that came from behind me and hit me on my head... When I came to the miko was there," the woman looked at Kagome who had his eyes glued to her hands. "I thank you for defeating the youkai who attacked me. It's pitiful the heavenly being disappeared, along with his robes..."

"A youkai attacked you?" Sango raised her eyebrows, gazing at the lump on her heaad

"Maybe it was also after the handsome celestial lad," Miroku grinned, his eyes fixed on their miko. Kagome glared at him and growled like their hanyou friend.

Inuyasha was silently listening to what was done and said in the camp. His ears twitched when he heard a word uttered in a quiet, but firm voice.

"He's mine."

He turned his head slightly to look at the miko and smirked a little. 'I wonder when she'll give me my robe back...'

Chapter Text

Inuyasha walked out of Kagome's house holding a bag of dried potatoes he had found on Kagome's bed. It had been asking to be eaten, so he had took it with himself to keep him company when he was walking around, looking for Higurashis.

The old man was easy to find, napping in the living room. The kid was as easy as him, sitting in front of the talking box and 'playing a game', because 'it was too hot to play outside'. 'Feh, puny humans...'

Inuyasha walked around the corner of the huge house, entering a small yard full of sunlight. The wave of hot air hit him and caused him to stop. He looked around the small area, noticing a broom resting against a wall n a corner, a bike near it, a few other things he couldn't name and...

...A blanket. Spread right in the middle of the grass-covered area. There was a woman sitting upon it, holding a bottle and pouring something smelling like flowers on her bare legs. Inuyasha's eyes went wide as he saw the female spread the lotion over her calf and knee. She was wearing stuff he had only seen when Kagome had been doing laundry - a thing similar to fundoshi called 'panties' and a 'bra', both white with blue dots. Otherwise she was naked. Inuyasha's cheeks turned unhealthy dark shade of red.

The bag of chips fell from his grasp when he realized in horror she noticed him and he couldn't sneak away and pretend he saw nothing. She smiled warmly insread of screaming about him being a peeping pervert.

"Hello, Inuyasha, dear. Kagome's visiting a shop to get some last items before you can go. Would you lend me a hand and spread the sunscreen on my back?" she actually got to finish the sentence before the hanyou sprang to action - in a flash of red and white he was gone, only the bag of chips indicating he had been there a second ago. Mama Higurashi tilted her head in confusion, but shrugged. 'He probably went to help Kagome carry her bags', she thought when she stretched on the blanket, letting the sun tan her skn nicely.

Chapter Text

They were like the Sun and the Moon to him.

Kikyou was the Sun - her power being so superior, so radiant, so great. Kagome's power was more subtle, less blinding, but strong enough to illuminate the skies. The Sun's rays could burn his skin if it was exposed to them for too long. He could bathe in moonlight the whole night and feel no pain, only serenity.

They both were generous with their kindness, just like the Sun and the Moon were shining down both at good and evil, at weak and strong. They were so adamant about helping those in need, even if it would put them in harm's way.

Melancholy would sometimes cloud Kikyou's eyes like clouds obscuring the radiance of the Sun. She was steadfast, unwilling to change her opinions, her ways. And as the Moon was changing its phases and paths Kagome was willing to adapt, to change, to open her heart just a little wider to let in a filthy half-breed, unworthy of pity of such pure beings like them.

While Kikyou's world was mostly dark and light fighting each other for dominance - just like the shadows of objects defined by the sunlight - Kagome's world was full of different shades of grey between the darkness and light, their borders softer and more inclined to change in time and experience - it was like the forest at night, with soft shadows of tree limbs swaying on the wind.

They were similar, but not identical. None was a copy of the other, each was beautiful and full of grace, of different worlds, but with the same love for life and goodness of heart.

As much as he liked the Sun Inuyasha was a lunar being.

Chapter Text

Hojo was on a mission. He had all he needed - a bunch of pretty flowers Kagome shouldn't be allergic too, a bag full of alt meds and a box of gluten-free cookies. All he needed to do now was to cross a few streets and climb the shrine steps. He smiled - soon he would see his innocent, gentle angel. She was so rarely at school lately, it was hard to catch her and just talk, so he decided to pay her a visit and

He entered an alley - it was just a pathway between two tall buildings, a short way no one usually used. Hojo walked beside a few old boxes and piles of rubbish before he saw Kagome.

She was approaching him fast - her hair waving as she was moving, a determined look on her face. Her school uniform was torn and her scarf was missing. And she was ridding on the back of a guy Hojo vaguely remembered - after a second he realized where he had seen those red robes, obviously dyed white hair and obvuously fake dog ears. It was the same boy who had taken Kagome to visit her aunt some time ago.

A cloud of smoke was quickly following the running pair. Hojo opened his mouth to greet his beloved angel when he saw her notch an arrow on a bow she held. When she did the boy carrying her abruptly turned on his heels so she could send her arrow flying straight in the cloud of smoke. Something shrieked in the cloud, Hojo could almost see shapes moving inside it. Something hit the wall of the bulding to the right hard enough to make some loose pebbles fall. The cloud pulsed and darkened, but was still moving forward.

"Fuck it!" the red-clad boy cursed and let the girl slide off his back to stand behind him. He unsheathed the sword he had at his side and the school boy could see an old looking katana transform in a flash of light in a huge blade which belonged more to video games than real world.

"Inuyasha, you cna't-!" Kagome screamed, but it was too late. The cloud was almost reaching them.

"Wind Scar!" roarred the white-haired boy as he slammed the sword to the ground.

The alley exploded.

Hojo sat up from the ground where he fell when the concrete under his feet shook and cracked. A pile of fallen boxes and cans was around him, shielding him from view. He brushed some of the rubbish off his clothes before some movement caught his attention. Kagome was kneeling up from the spot where she had been curled in a ball, the boy leaning over her to protect her from the falling debris. The boy shook himself like a wet dog, sending all the dust from his hair and clothes to fly up in a cloud around him. Then he looked at the other end of the alley - long, deep cracks in the ground, walls missing big chunks of them amd sporting deep cracks, rubbish covering the whole area. Somewhere in the distance someone was screaming and there was the sound of police sirens approaching fast. The alley was eerily quiet.

"INUYASHA!" Kagome exclaimed when she finally stood beside the boy and looked at the destruction. She grabbed a forelock and tugged hard.

"Ow! Watch the hair, wench!" the boy growled, the fake dog ears somehow moving to lay against his head.

"Look what you did!"

"Yeah, I see," he smirked smugly, apparently proud of himself. "I did better job than this poorly aimed arrow. What was that, wench? You're better than that!"

"I would hit the mark if you were steadier!" she growled at him and looked at the piles of debris before them. She walked to one and dug out a piece of something shining pink. She put it in a bottle hanging around her neck and smiled when she returned to the boy. "Okay, let's go before someone sees us."

"Feh, I'd beat him senseless if he tried to say anything," the boy grinned, but sheathed his sword and knelt down so Kagome could climb on his back. Hojo caught a fangy grin on his face when he glanced Hojo's way. He put a finger across his mouth and Hojo saw he had unnaturally long fingernails. "Besides no one would belive him."

"Stop bragging," Kagome gripped her bow when the boy chuckled and... Hojo's eyes followed the pair as the boy jumped up, easily reaching the top of the shorter building three floors above the ground.

When the police came and asked Hojo what happened the boy merely uttered a few words.

"It exploded... It exploded very bad..."

While he was sitting in an ambulance headed to a hospital to get a check up he was thinking that he really had to ask Kagome why she was hanging around this red-clad boy - he definetely was a violent, rash boy and didn't treat her like a gentleman. No gentleman would carry a girl - a very sick girl - on his back and shout at her or call her wench. Maybe he was a gang member? Gang members were the worst! Hojo decided he had to investigate it - he couldn't let his angel to stay in hands of a pure demon like a gang member.

Chapter Text

It was a peaceful day, full of sunlight, warmth and various scents of nature mixed together. It was also one of the not rainy days of this season, so Kagome decided sh should make the most of it and go for herbs hunting deeper in the forest than usual. SHe had her bow and arrows, so she wasn't afraid of venturing too far and encountering a bad youkai. With Inuyasha killing practically everything that could challenge his dominance in the area it was hard to find any youkai, let alone one wanting to wreck havoc or devour people.

Kagome was harvesting happily on a meadow when she heard and felt a Wind Scar nearby. She stood straight and turned around to face the diction of the attack. Without a second thought she left her basket and grabbed her bow, wanting to aid her mate in his battle - a Wind Scar wasn't usually necessary to deal with small-fry youkai.

Soon the miko reached a big glade where Inuyasha was battling... His brother. Both were holding their signature weapons and the trees around the meadow were often uprooted or broken. It seemed the fight was going for a while. Both men were unharmed, but it could be changed in a matter of seconds - they weren't people who would hold back an attack because the other party was their family. Kagome had to do something.

So she dropped her bow - it was useless - and ran towards Sesshomaru. She knew she could make Inuyasha stop whatever he was doing with a word, it was the older brother who had to be talked out of this ridiculous fight. Why were they fighting, anyway? When she had returned she had learned the brothers reached a truce where they were able to have a civil conversation not involving swords and poisoned claws. Now they were facing each other like in the days of the jewel shard hunt.

"Sesshomaru! Stop that!" she exclaimed, both males growling at her in irritation. She stopped between them. a few pases from the daiyoukai. "You don't have to fight!"

"This one merely wants to make sure that he hanyou is worthy of carrying this one's noble father's blood in his veins while this one still is not in the right mood to kill him," Sesshomaru explained himself. "Step aside, little sister, this one has a little brother to maim."

"Oi! I'm the one who's gonna maim ya!" Inuyasha barked from behind her back, his voice growing closer. She stole a glance back to see Inuyasha run in her direction, his ears perked forward, his eyes glued to the person behind her. She quickly turned back to face Sesshomaru when she heard him sigh. The vision that graced her eyes were his knees in the area where his face should be. With a scowl Kagome leapt forward and grabbed onto the flowing mokomoko before Sesshomaru could fly away fro her reach.

"Your attempts are in vain, little sister, you can't hinder this one's ascent," the daiyoukai pointed out and his eyes sparkled a little when he saw his brother glare up at him. Soon Kagome saw that they were high above the treetops.

"Come back 'ere!" Inuyasha exclaimed.

"See, big brother? There is no need to fight..." Kagome started in her best calming voice, trying not to look down at the distance between her and the ground. The furry stuff under her hands shifted and prompted her to look up at the daiyoukai.

"I thought I still was in your range, Inuyasha," he called down, the faintest shadow of a smirk gracing his lips. "We can continue our battle."

"No fuckin' way I'm attackin' ya with Kagome, idiot!" came an instant later. Kagome sighed in relief, but then saw a spark in Sesshomaru's eyes.

"Do you hear it, little brother is unwilling to fight anymore," he said to Kagome clinging to his mokomoko.

"I heard! Land already!" Kagome demanded.

"This one has no desire to land and he won't take orders from a lowly human," Sesshomaru said and raised his chin proudly, glancing at the woman. Kagome growled at him and saw him reach up to stroke his mokomoko. Sesshomaru whispered something in the white fur and the next second Kagome realized that she was falling, the furry thing trailing after her on the way down. Sesshomaru was no longer attached to his precious mokomoko,

She didn't even had time to get scared or cry before a familiar shout of: "Kagome!" filled her ears and a pair of arms wrapped around her, supported her on her way down. Kagome smiled as she looked in Inuyasha's golden eyes. The hanyou looked up to glare at his brother who was merely hovering above them, watching in silence. A minute later something white and fluffy wrapped itself around Inuyasha's shoulders and he practically dropped his wife with a yelp, trying to rip the mokomoko off his person.

"Take it off me!" he growled at the mokomoko happily clinging to his warm arms and trying to wrap itself around his head. While she reached up to help her husband get free she heard a strange noise. She looked up and saw Sesshomaru flashing his fangs in a smirk reminding her about Inuyasha's. She had no time to stare in wonder at that sight, she had a hanyou to save.

Chapter Text

Souta sighed and looked around the yard. It was empty, majority of the kids already gone. He and his two best friends Yukio and Kan were still in the school building, hoping that if they stayed a while longer their worst nightmares would go home.

Their worst nightmares were a bunch of older boys, who found it entertaining to pick on smaller boys. Souta bit his bottom lip. A part of him wanted to tell his family and the teachers about those meanies, but he felt afraid. The bullies haven't done anything worse than calling them names, pushing them and stuff like this. Souta felt that his family would overreact and his teachers ignore him and his friends.

"The coast seems clear," said Kan after a minute.

"Let's go," Souta nodded and all three of them went out. They were halfway to the gate when a bunch of bigger boys approached them and encircled the trio, so they couldn't run away. When Kan tried to run past two of them they just pushed him at his friends. A few of the boys had baseball bats and brandished them with wide smiles. Souta realized that today would be different, it wouldn't end with a few names and a push to the ground.

"Well, well, well," grinned Kenji, the leader of the group. "What do we have here?"

"Nerds?" asked one of his friends, smirking at the boys staring in fear at them. Souta looked around, but there was no one who could help them, the yard was empty.

"Yeah, nerds," Kenji nodded and rested his fists on his hips. "So, nerds, now you have to pay to cross the yard."

"No money - no seeing mommy," chuckled someone behind Souta's back.

"So pay or I'll make you my personal punch bags." the leader stated. Yukio gasped - he already got hit by the group leader a few days ago and still was walking a bit stiffly.

Souta looked around at the bigger and stronger boys. He bit his bottom lip in a manner similar to his older sister. He thought that she probably felt this way - trapped and helpless - every time a youkai attacked her. But she had Inuyasha to protect her, help her fight. He and his friends had no such luck.

Still, he really wished his hero was there to show the bad guys that there was justice in the world.

"We don't have money," Souta flinched when he heard Kan's voice. "So just leave us alone. If you try to bully us more I'm going to tell..."

"What about this - we'll let you go today for free and tomorrow you pay us?" Kenji cut in. "And I wouldn't say a word if I were you, unless you want to have an accident."

Souta knew well what he was referring to, the gang would do nasty things to their prey. It would be better to play along until they had a way out of this without getting in more troubles. He opened his mouth when the older boy added. "We'll let you go for free this time. That is after we make sure you don't forget to bring them tomorrow."

Souta's eyes widened when he realized they were going to get in trouble anyway. How was he going to explain bruises and torn uniform to his mom? The older boys moved closer and Kan immediately stood in a fighting stance while Yukio looked around in panic. Souta gripped his bag tighter, deciding to use it as a weapon and a shield at the same time.

"Move aside, runt," someone pushed Kenji out of their way, breaking the circle around Souta and his friends. Souta saw a familiar - even if vastly outdated - red kimono. It's owner looked at the Higurashi boy with mild annoyance. "You're late, kid."

"Inuyasha!" Souta exclaimed, thanking the heavens that they brought his hero to save him. Inuyasha had a black bandana covering his ears and his hands were in his sleeves, but he was still looking exotic with his white hair and bright eyes. Souta's friends looked at the hanyou in surprise, they had heard a little about Souta's idol, but this was the first time they saw him. Some of the boys around them shifted a step away in the presence of an older boy, some hid their weapons behind their backs when Inuyasha glared at the whole gathering.

"Hey, freak, what-!" Kenji jumped to stand in front of the hanyou, glaring at him. Inuyasha ignored him, still looking at Souta.

"Your sister wants you to see something before we go, so move," he said as if there were no other people.

"Inuyasha..." Souta breathed out. "Th-they..."

"They want us to pay for going through the yard, those bullies," Kan explained, Yukio nodded eagerly, holding his bag tightly to his chest.

"Yeah," Souta nodded. Inuyasha took a long, suffering sigh. "They were going to beat us up," he elaborated. He was sure the hanyou wouldn't overreact or ignore this - it was for sure he wouldn't stand idly while there were bad guys in a desperate need of learning a lesson. In Souta's opinion Inuyasha was the most fit person in the entire world to dish such a lesson out. After all he was a good hero, fighting bad guys daily, saving meek people, who couldn't fight for themselves.

"You need twenty assholes to beat up three kids?" Inuyasha finally looked at the leader of the group, who grabbed a baseball bat from one of his friends and swung it at Inuyasha. Yukio cried out in fear. but Souta just smiled. In a flash of red Inuyasha's hand moved and the bat suddenly fell to pieces under Kenji's feet. Then the hanyou moved again, almost too fast for the boys to see, and kicked the leader of the group. Souta saw Kenji fall to the ground a short distance away, curled in a ball of painful groaning. He knew Inuyasha went easy on him, after all Kenji did survived the kick. The circle around Souta and his friends widened and shifted when the older boys tried to distance themselves from the red-clad boy and not look like total cowards.

"Inuyasha's my sister's boyfriend," Souta said with the same smile still on his face. "He's killed stronger guys than you all."

"Oi, Souta, don't scare the kids," the hanyou said when he saw awe in the eyes of Kan and Yukio, and fear in eyes of the rest of the boys. "Now stop stalling, we have places to go."

Souta stepped above the shattered bat, Yukio and Kan in tow. Inuyasha led them out of the yard like mother duck little ducklings trailing after.

"Oi!" the hanyou looked back at the still standing boys - two of them were helping Kenji up, but the rest was just looking after the leaving four. "Next time I won't go easy on ya."

Souta gave the bullies a wide grin.

"You come close to us and you're dead meat," he said and felt Inuyasha's hand on his shoulder.

"Next time I'm here I'm teaching you how to kick asses, kid. I already have one Higurashi to protect," the hanyou said much quieter.

"Really? You'll teach me?" Souta exclaimed happily and ran after the hanyou.

"Will you teach us too?" Kan asked, coming up on Inuyasha's other side as the hanyou was walking down the street

"Yes, please, Souta's sister's boyfriend!" Souta giggled when he heard determination in Yukio's voice. "Please?"

Inuyasha groaned inwardly, but gave a stiff nod. He didn't know that this afternoon he inspired three future-born boys to create a fan club, which name was Inu Fight Club.

He learned the truth the next time he went to the future to see three boys in red tshirts and pants waiting under the Sacred Tree to learn from the Big Dog Brother.

Chapter Text

Bankotsu was a man of action. When he had a craving he acted.

This is why the leader of Band of Seven was walking down a corridor in the band's headquarters one sunny morning.

He had a craving.

He had an itch.

Only well-prepared pickles could silence the violent urge he felt. He felt he could burn the world if he didn't get what he wanted.

Luckily for the world Bankotsu had a jar of perfect pickles stored in the basement.

One could argue Bankotsu could send a servant to fetch his pickles and bring them to his room. But servants were usually cleaning the training yard all morning and calling one away from their important task just to bring a dusty jug felt like such a waste. Besides Bankotsu didn't trust anyone with his pickles.

Bankotsu smiled when he saw Suikotsu leaving the kitchen with a tray containing a big tea pot and a cup - it seemed his brother was going to spend the morning reading

"Where are you going, big brother?" asked Suikotsu politely.

"To the basement," Ban replied cheerfully and dove down to catch the falling tray before it hit the floor. Suikotsu shook visibly and took the tray from Bankotsu's hands.

"Ba-basement?" he whispered. "Are you sure you want to go there?"

"Of course!" Ban grinned. Suikotsu shrugged, regaining his composure.

"Good luck then," he said. Bankotsu gave a nod and resumed his walking.

He was a man on a mission. He passed Renkotsu's room and peeked in through the opened door - the room was neatly organized and empty, Ren was probably outside, testing his new invention. Ban didn't dwell on it for long, he had a jug to dig out after all.

Bankotsu found Ginkotsu and Mukotsu standing in front of the door covering the stair leading to the basement, both looking thoughtful.

"Hi, guys, what's up?"

"We want to get some stuff from the basement, big brother," explained Mukotsu. Bankotsu blinked.

"So? Why won;t you go to fetch that stuff?" he asked. Ginkotsu just grunted and shrugged, so Mukotsu elaborated on the explanation.

"Jakotsu said it's haunted." It was no secret those two were very superstitious.

"Haunted?" Bankotsu raised an eyebrow. "Jakotsu was probably joking."

"But we heard some howling and groaning from down there!" Mukotsu said. Bankotsu was about to answer when he heard a moan-like noise fro seemingly just behind the door. Cold sweat appeared on his forehead.

Whatever it was...

...It was locked away with his pickles.

Not listening to his band mates Bankotsu kicked in the door and practically ran on the stairs, jumping two steps at one leap. He had to save his pickles!

The basement was lit with a single candle placed on a small table in the center. It was doing its best to illuminate rows of shelves and barrels. Bankotsu scanned the big room - he saw no ghosts and no youkai, only a lone man hanging by his wrists from he ceiling in a far corner. The man moaned when his haunted eyes locked with Bankotsu's.

The leader of the band sighed in relief and looked back at Mukotsu and Ginkotsu peering inside. It seemed Jakotsu was in a playful mood today.

"It's safe! Jakotsu just keeps his friend inside and probably didn't want us to scare him!" he called and walked to his pickle jug to treat himself.

The captured man followed with his eyes the man who had ran in the basement and now was leaving with a pickle jug in his arms. He moaned weakly and let his head hang freely when his desperate noise didn't cause the man to even look back at him.

Chapter Text

He pulled her out of the well and into his arms. It looked like an easy move, but he knew if she didn't push herself off the ladder hid inside the well he wouldn't pull her so easily. Even with his muscles such a feat would be hard to do.

"And so the hanyou Inuyasha helped his beloved mate to leave the portal between the worlds," said an old miko sitting nearby on a blanket, two dozens children sitting around her and observing the couple by the well.

He held her in his arms and smiled down at her. "Kagome..." he breathed out and ran a hand through her dark hair. She gave him a happy smile.

"Inuyasha," she wrapped her arms around him. "I came back to live with you."

They heard a few girls sigh dreamily. He was a little lost in her dark eyes and she had to step on his bare foot to remind him he should answer.

"Keh!" he uttered and upon seeing her frown he realized it wasn't the right thing to say.

"Now she's gonna sit him!" exclaimed one boy excitedly.

She smiled at him wickedly and tugged at his hair, which was much longer than usual and white. It was quite hot, having so much of hair on such a sunny summer day. Briefly he wondered how his dear friend could not be overheated during warm days. Maybe this was one of his youkai traits. He didn't dwell on this matter when he had something else on his mind.

"I mean I love you, Kagome, will you bear my children?" his declaration of love was spoken with shaking voice, but it was shaking because of fear, not longing. Still, the girls cooed all the same and Kaede snorted.

"I believe it should go: will you be my mate?" suggested the woman in his arms. He nodded vigorously.

"I will!" he promised and then he felt her free herself from his grasp and push him to the ground.

"Sit boy!" she exclaimed, eliciting giggles from the audience. He looked up to see her standing above him, her hands on her hips, her glare fixed on him and daring him to try and stand up. She was good at it.

"And when the young miko came back to us she and the hanyou protector of our village exchanged vows of love," said Kaede, trying to sound calm despite sparks of mirth in her eye. "Soon after they got married and mated. And with their reunion the balance was restored and this is the end of the story of the great war with Naraku."

He stood up and wrapped one arm around the woman he had pulled out of the well. She was wearing robes were designed to resemble the foreign outfit in which their miko friend had came back a year ago while his was just a simple red kimono. His black hair was hid under a white wig adorned with paper ears while her hair was flowing freely down her back. It had took some preparing to get into roles and choose a few scenes from the long story of the jewel shard hunt, but they were glad they could take part in this event.

"Thank ye for helping me tell the story to the young ones," said Kaede before leading the children back to the village. The pair remained in the meadow and sat on the lip of the well, holding each other.

"It sure was a big task to get everything done," she said and rested her head against his shoulder.

"Keh." he grinned down at her and she reached up to pull his beads playfully.

"Good the rest is out of the village or they'd not let us live it down," she said, half joking. She was sure the woman she had played would be delighted and probably embarrassed.

"Well," he looked in her beautiful eyes and gave her his best vile youkai smirk. "We have one more scene to replay today, my love."

"Huh?" she blinked up at him, frowning at the expression on his face.

"Mating," he whispered in her ear and when she tried to run away he pounced.

.

A couple of travelers were walking a forest path. The woman was dressed in miko robes, a bow and quiver over her arm. She was looking at the trees and flowers with a smile and awe-filled brown eyes. Beside her was walking a white-haired, dog-eared man in red kimono, a big bag over his shoulder. His eyes were looking around like he was scanning the area for potential enemies.

"Can we stop by the well before we go home?" the woman asked.

"Keh, why not?" the man shrugged and smiled when she grabbed his free hand. They were walking in comfortable silence until they reached a big meadow where an ancient well was located. It held a special meaning - it had been holding the portal between two times and through it they had met. Now it was a reminder of the woman's past, her family, who was not born yet. For him it was a reminder of the kind people who had accepted him and the three years of longing. When he thought about it he tightened his grasp on the little hand in his own.

His musings were probably what made him notice the scent a little too late. He stopped, letting the woman take a few steps towards the well. A loud moan could be heard and it made the man's ears twitch. The female froze at the sudden noise, her gaze landing on a pile of red and blue cloth resting just beside the well.

"Inu-Inuyasha..." giggled a female voice from behind the wooden structure. The woman in miko robes looked back at the hanyou standing a few paces behind her.

"Mmm, I like licking your neck, let me lick lower," came a masculine voice. The female giggled and the male produced a noise which could pass for an amused growl when she grabbed fistfuls of his hair and tried to push his head away.

A minute later the hanyou, his face as red as his robe, appeared on the edge of the forest, running in the direction of the village as if the big bag and blushing miko on his back were weightless cargo. The village kids, who had just returned from the show in the forest, depicting the adventures of the hanyou and miko, cheered when they saw the couple pass by, but the happy cries of the children didn't stop Inuyasha from running straight to his house where he and Kagome hid themselves to battle their embarrassment caused by what they had seen in the meadow.

Weeks passed before someone saw the hanyou and miko near the clearing where the well was located. Days passed before they could look at their friends without blushing.

Chapter Text

It was such a fine day. Inuyasha was napping, reclined on a sturdy tree limb, his favorite miko napping with him, wrapped in his arms and pressed against his chest. The pair was inseparable after Kagome's return the previous week and Inuyasha was slowly gathering courage to ask his nap companion to be his mate. He was still shocked after the surprise of the previous day when the hanyou had expressed his feelings towards the girl just to learn she loved him in return.

It was better to take baby steps, there was no hurry and Inuyasha wanted to court his intended properly. So they were just spending time together, getting to know each other again under the watchful - and a little teasing - eyes of their friends.

The teasing was the reason for the couple to take their nap quite far from the village. It was still close enough for Miroku and Kaede to sense their auras and get them in the time of need.

And such a time just arose.

Miroku stood under the tree, panting and waving his hand in front of his face in a futile attempt to cool himself after running here all the way from the village.

"Inuyasha! Kagome! We have a problem!" he called up when he caught his breath. One golden eye peered down.

"Correction, monk. You have a problem," came a gruff reply.

"No! We! Definitely we!" now both nappers looked at Miroku, frowning at the panic on his face. It was not a frequent expression on usually serene face of their friend.

"What's wrong, Miroku?" asked Kagome while rubbing her face with one hand.

"Sesshomaru's going to visit Rin today!" Miroku said.

"What of it? He visits every other week," Inuyasha shrugged. "No big deal."

"But this time Rin's missing!"

Miroku jumped back, startled, when Inuyasha landed just in front of him, worried Kagome in his arms. They were concerned about the girl, but Inuyasha and Miroku were also really worried about what Sesshomaru's reaction was going to be. It was better not to test the daiyoukai. Kagome quickly realized the danger of an irate daiyoukai demanding answers about the whereabouts of his ward. And there was no saying what the daiyoukai would do upon learning his ward, entrusted to Inuyasha and his pack, was gone missing. Sango was already waiting for the search party, asking around the village if anyone had seen Rin.

They had to find the girl before Sesshomaru's arrival. The village wouldn't survive if they didn't.

"Master Inuyasha!"

After two hours of frantic search the gang returned from their search for the daiyoukai's ward just to learn she was back in the village. Kagome and her fiends looked at the girl who was waiting for them just in front of Kaede's hut. The girl had her hair in a nice hair do, ornamented with silk flowers and combs. She had her face painted. An extravagant kimono of multiple layers and vibrant colors flowed down her teenage frame. She waved a hand happily at the gang of friends she treated like family.

"Thanks heavens, she looks unharmed," Miroku sighed in relief.

"Rin!" Kagome exclaimed in relief, rushing towards her and being outran only by Sango. Inuyasha, who normally would outrun both females was too busy sniffing the air around the hut to take part in the mad run. He paled visibly and his ears flattened.

"Rin, where were you?" asked Sango as she took hold of Rin's hand.

"We looked everywhere for you, but Inuyasha couldn't smell you anywhere," added Kagome. Miroku frowned when the hanyou didn't start yelling at the girl. There was something wrong, really wrong. Was Sesshomaru already here, lurking in a shadow and planning how to express his displeasure with them? A shiver ran down Miroku's spine.

"I-is she still here?" the half inu youkai asked the ward of his brother, causing everyone to look at him.

"Who?"

"The bitch! Is she still around?" Inuyasha glared around. "I can smell her!" His voice rose in pitch.

"Rin spent time with auntie Ru," Rin answered Sango's question. "Auntie Ru gave Rin a make over. Do you think Lord Sesshomaru will like it?" she asked while tilting her head. "Auntie Ru brought Rin back and told she was going to look for-"

"Inu-chan!" Kagome blinked when a silver-haired youkai woman appeared from above their heads and landed just behind the hanyou to wrap her arms around him and rest her head on his shoulder, holding him in an iron grip despite the fact the hanyou was trying his best to free himself. Two high ponytails swayed when the female laughed at her captive, her golden eyes full of mischief. Inuyasha made an unmanly sound of panic.

"Isn't she pretty, Inu-chan?" she asked and looked at the surprised group. Sango nodded reflexively, as if the question was directed at her. "Now come, auntie Ru needs to make you presentable for your intended," she winked at Kagome and pulled the yelling and struggling hanyou up as she levitated in the cloud-covered sky.

In the silence surrounding the group of humans Kagome took a slow breath.

"What just happened?" she asked her friends. "Should we try to save him?" she added when no one replied. Miroku just shook his head.

"Better just hope she goes away when Sesshomaru shows up," he said.

Chapter Text

Kouga ran up the path leading to the den of his tribe. It was more like a system of caves, some of them connected, some not. He was running with ease of a long-distance runner, finding joy in the wind playing with his ponytail. He was coming home after a long day of wolf youkai stuff. His life was peaceful, but fun, full to the brim. He had everything a wolf youkai could crave - his own pack, a wonderful mate, a bunch of cubs.

His smile widened when he saw his mate in the entrance to their cave. She still looked so beautiful with her black hair and radiant smile, even if there were streaks of silver in her hair. He was a lucky wolf.

"Kouga!" she called happily and jumped in his arms. They shared a passionate kiss. Then their kids swarmed them and he looked at them with pride.

A dozen of pups, all with silver hair and radiant yellow eyes. His cubs. Each and every one a hanyou. Each and every one sporting a pair of twitching ears on top of their heads. They were talking at the same time, flooding him with tales about fights, explorations and learning.

"Oi! Be quiet, brats!" he exclaimed. His kids all folded their arms in front of themselves and gave him cocky grins.

"Keh!"

Kouga woke up with a silent scream of dread, drenched in sweat. He needed a minute to realize he was laying in his bed, in his cave. Ayame sleeping curled next to him. He sighed in relied and looked to the corner of the cave where the basket with his sleeping firstborn sat. His first son, pride of his life, first of many children they were planning to have, a full-blooded youkai.

Kouga smiled. He was a lucky wolf.

Chapter Text

They were fighting a boar youkai who was much stronger that they had predicted. It had a small palace in the woods and now they were fighting in front of it. Right now Miroku was sprawled under a fallen tree, Sango trying to lift it so he could crawl from under it. Luckily the bark wasn't thick or heavy enough to do more harm than bruising Miroku's body and pride while also keeping him pinned down. Shippou and Kagome were crouching behind a big boulder, the miko with her bow ready. Inuyasha was engaging the boar in a fight, Tessaiga cutting the air and occasionally wounding the bigger youkai. The hanyou was wounded here and there, but it didn't stop him. He had to finish this fast and help his friends, so he was pushing the boar back with the sheer stubbornness and speed. The miko could see her friend was slowly getting tired.

Tessaiga was huge, but the boar's spear was even bigger, giving him a wide range. Suddenly the youkai sprang forward, dwarfing the hanyou who didn't have time to jump away. Kagome screamed when she saw the spear tear a deep wound in Inuyasha's right bicep. The hanyou tried to grab Tessaiga with his left hand, but it already slid out of his limp fingers and transformed back to its rusty self. Inuyasha staggered back, miraculously avoiding another spear thrust and dipping his claws in his blood to send Hijin Kessou at the boar's eyes. One of the blood blades cut the shard of the jewel the youkai had between his eyes and the boar roared in pain, taking a few steps back.

Shippou darted out his hiding spot to collect the shard for Kagome, but the youkai already wiped the blood from his wounded eye and nose, his other eye easily spotting the kitsune/

"That's mine!" he screamed and charged at Shippou like a real boar. Kagome called to him to flee, but the boy froze in fright. The second the spearhead flew forward to pierce his little body a blur of red and silver came to shield the child. Shippou stared at the tip of the spear, red like the robe it was piercing, mere centimeters away from his face, Inuyasha grunted in pain and fell to his knees, his hands gripping the shaft of the spear buried in his gut. Kagome's cry of his name mixed with Sango's call of her weapon's name. Both the huge boomerang and a sacred arrow hit the youkai who disintegrated with another roar.

"Inuy-" started Shippou weakly. His hanyou friend didn't reply, but fell to his side. Kagome and Sango were already running to them when the youki of their friend shifted. "-asha...?"

"He's changing!" called Miroku, still pinned under a tree. "Get back! Give him Tessaiga!"

The fear of Inuyasha turning full youkai came back after many months - it didn't happen since his battle with Ryuukotsusei. Instead of running away like any sane being should Inuyasha's friends refused to leave him to his youkai side and started to look for the fallen sword. Sango grabbed it, but it was already too late.

Inuyasha slid the spear out of his body and sat up, focusing his eyes at Shippou and Kagome who were the closest to him. When Inuyasha didn't attack Shippou dared to utter his name.

"Yes, this one is Inuyasha, son of Touga, the Inu no Taisho of the Western Lands, brother to Lord Sesshomaru of the Western Lands," Inuyasha smiled. It was more creepy than his best snarls. Inuyasha's rough, deep voice caused Sango to stop sneaking closer and the rest simply stared at him.

In a single fluid move Inuyasha stood up and caught Kagome's hands.

"Don't be afraid, my lovely intended mate, this one is not badly wounded. Yet if you require to check this one's scratches to calm yourself, this one will allow it."

"Um..." Kagome blushed and managed to nod at his words.

"And my brave beta," the hanyou-turned-youkai focused his red eyes at Sango, who bit her bottom lip and hugged Tessaiga to her chest a little tighter. "Your courage and strength make you an excellent beta, you have nothing to fear from this one. This Inuyasha is most pleased by your performance this afternoon."

Sango, who had never before got a compliment from the gruff hanyou, could only stare at him as he made his way to Miroku. He flexed his claws.

"Ah, the unfortunate mate of my beta," he sighed and easily picked the tree to throw it away. He grabbed Miroku by the collar of his robe and put him on his feet. "Your wisdom and prowess with dealing with humans are brilliant and appreciated, but you should try to stay away from dangers like this. This one doesn't want any harm to come to his pack."

"Thank you, Inuyasha..." uttered Miroku. Inuyasha turned around to look at everyone.

"Let's enter our now home before we take over this domain. You earned your rest and this one wishes to indulge himself with a cup of steaming ramen." After those words Inuyasha walked to the mansion, leaving his stunned friends behind.

"You know what?" said Shippou after a moment of silence. "What about... not giving Tessaiga back to him?"

"But we should. I'm not sure what's wrong with him, but he can snap any minute," Sango shook her head.

"And we don't know if this isn't just a plot of the youkai blood to devour his human heart," added Miroku and put his finger to his chin. "Just think about it - what if he's just playing to convince us not to give the sword back to him?"

Everyone looked to still silent and motionless Kagome, who turned a radiant smile their way.

"Do you think we can wait with giving him back the sword after eating lunch...?"

Chapter Text

Kagome sighed and grabbed her bag closer to her chest. She was just glad her first day in school was finally over. She had been prepared for it to be a hard one - after all she was joining the school in middle of a semester. Everyone knew everyone already, there were intricate webs of friendship and hate formed, she had to figure out her way around. She had no one to rely on... It was particularly hard for her, because she was very shy and making new friends was always hard. And there was still the matter of lessons, finding classes, staying focused and sharp. And not getting lost in the maze of corridors.

She entered the room where everyone was supposed to retreat for a coffee break during the recesses and after school day was over. It was to strengthen the bonds between peers and Kagome thought it was a really nice idea.

When she entered only Kikyou and Sango were there - Kikyou busy cutting her home-baked pie in slices while Sango was brewing strong, back coffee. Kagome sighed and inhaled deeply the mixed scents of sweet treat and strong coffee. It was like heaven after all the stress and anxiety of the day. Both females smiled at her, but it was Sango who waved at her to come over.

"Can you fetch the cups?" she asked and pointed to a big cabinet, where a host of misfit mugs, cups and glasses waited.

"Um... Which ones belong to whom?" she asked, opening the cabinet. She suspected some people had their favorites.

"Miroku, the biology teacher, has this slim cup with handwritten "Coffee-bearer" written on it," Sango pointed. "Kikyou's that delicate looking tea cup with a bellflower." As Kagome reached carefully for each vessel Kikyou came over and picked up a few plates for the cake slices.

"It just looks fragile," she assured Kagome when she saw the care with which the new one picked her cup. Kagome gave her a small nod and a smile.

"Okay..." she turned around and put the cups on the counter in front of Sango, who filled them with the dark liquid.

"Mine's that green with red swirls," the PE teacher continued. "Kaede will want to get her coffee in that black one..."

"And this monster?" Kagome picked up a big white cup with two handles shaped like pointed ears. She was pretty sure it could hold almost a liter of liquid. A hand reached over her shoulder and grabbed one of the ears.

"This's mine," said the history teacher Inuyasha and threw at least five sugar cubes in his cup before letting Sango fill it. Kagome looked around and saw that he was not the only one who came in after her - Miroku was already holding his cup and looking at the plates with Kikyou's cake hungrily.

"So, how was your day?" Sango put the pot on its place and picked up her cup. She leaned against the counter, looking at the rest gathered around the table where Kikyou was distributing the cake. Inuyasha grabbed a plate and sat down under a window, Miroku joining him. A few other teachers came in to enjoy their coffee, even the principal Kaede made it in the room. Everyone was talking and Kagome smiled softly at the whole group, hoping they'd become good friends with her.

"It was okay, I guess," Kagome held in her hands a plain glass - she had no personal cup. She gave Inuyasha's mug a longing stare, it looked like it could contain enough coffee to keep her hydrated for a whole day. Sango giggled when she saw her gaze and Kagome blushed.

"He's single," the PE teacher whispered in her ear. "But beware, Kikyou's trying to woo him since the semester started."

"Um... I... I just looked at his mug. I'd like to have so much coffee," she stuttered. The historian was pretty handsome, especially with his exotic white hair and dog ears of a dog hanyou, but she really meant the cup... Sango grinned, but then scowled when she saw Miroku noticing them both look at him and his friend, and winking.

"Good advice, be careful around Miroku. He's a bit a pervert."

"I noticed," Kagome sighed. "He tried to accidentally grab my butt when we met earlier this day," she confessed.

"Ugh, he's going to get in trouble one day or another," Sango raised her eyes to the ceiling. "He's harmless, beside his wandering hand... The best way to keep him away is to tell him you're taken. Or you can ask Inuyasha to break his nose for you."

"Would he really do that?" Kagome stared at the chatting historian and biology teacher.

"Most definitely. He did it for Ayame the previous year," Sango shrugged. "Give it all a few weeks and you'll see we're as crazy as the students. Whatever happens you can come to me," she added with a honest smile. Kagome couldn't help but smile back at her new friend.

"Thanks, Sango." She was going to like the coffee time and her new work, she was sure of it. She glanced to Inuyasha's mug. She was going to borrow it one day. She returned the cup to the cabinet, ignoring Rin, the match teacher, giggling and warning her Inuyasha would know about her antics anyway, no matter what.
.

The chance to borrow Inuyasha's cup came the next day because the historian didn't come to the school. The students who had history this day were elated, as was Kagome. Big white mug was keeping her awake and sharp all day. Or rather the coffee

The next day during the coffee meeting Inuyasha didn't say a word, just hugged his bucket of a cup and seemed to be more focused on teasing Sango than investigating if his mug had been busy the previous day. Kagome gave Rin a wide grin, but the petite teacher just lifted a brow.

.

A few days later Kagome entered the common room to find a scowling Kikyou glaring her way, Rin and Sango giggling and preparing coffee, Miroku putting on a big plate cookies and a big pale green mug similar in shape to Inuyasha's, just with her name. When she picked it up and looked down she saw a square of folded paper.

"Go on!" Sango encouraged her when she hesitated and Kagome noticed everyone, even Kikyou, were looking at her with curiosity. She bit her lip and unfolded the paper.

"I know what ya did, wench."

Chapter Text

Kagome's birthday was in full swing. She was sitting among her friends, holding her cup of wine and enjoying telling jokes and stories from high school.

"Okay, Kagome, what would you love to get for your birthday the most?" asked Rin, who was sitting just next to the birthday girl.

"Um... I have a wonderful family and bunch of cool friends," Kagome looked around the wide circle of people sitting on all possible surfaces in the living room.

"And your boyfriend's really great, too," said Inuyasha, who was sitting on her other side. Kagome leaned in and kissed his cheek.

"Of course, Inu," she said and saw his ears twitch in the cutest way when he gave her a fangy smirk.

"But there must be something," Sango joined Rin. "You didn't let us give you gifts..."

"Yeah! Maybe we can do something?" suggested Ayumi. "You know, to celebrate your birthday?"

"Yes! You turn seventeen only once!" Kouga nodded fiercely.

"I have an idea what she might like," started Miroku and barely dodged a pillow thrown by Ayame. "No, really, it's not perverter, I swear!"

"It isn't?" everyone stared at him, now really interested. Miroku cautiously looked at the crowd, expecting to see another pillow flying his way, but there was none. Instead he saw every member of Kagome's birthday party look at him with curiosity, including Sesshomaru.

"So. yeah... All guys take off their shirts for the rest of the party," Miroku said after a dramatic pause.

When Jaken came out of the kitchen where he had been talking to Mrs. Higurashi, he saw all males in the room topless. Kouga was sporting his tattoos, Miroku was trying to convince Rin and Ayame to touch his well-toned abs despite two youkai glaring at him, Sesshomaru pretended he was beyond all of it, despite the face his button down shirt was neatly folded on a windowsill. Kagome was leaning back against Inuyasha, who was sitting behind her on a couch. The kappa even saw Hojo without his shirt.

"What's meaning of this?" he asked Hojo.

"We're decided to take off out shirts as a gift for Higurashi," he said, blushing faintly.

"Yes! Isn't this cool?" asked Yuka, patting Hojo's bare shoulder. Jaken grunted and wasted a minute to think about this idea. Then he walked in the center of the room, drawing everyone's attention.

"I shall join this event to honor this special day," he said and tugged on the flap of his kimono.

Mrs. Higurashi who was preparing the big birthday cake and candles in the kitchen suddenly heard screams of terror and agony. When she lifted her head to look in the direction of the opened door she saw her daughter and a bunch of her friends run inside and close the door. The woman raised a brow when she saw some were lacking shirts.

"What's happened?" she asked.

"Miroku suggested the boys take their shirts, like a gift for Kagome," Eri explained, blushing a little.

"I can see," the middle-aged woman said with a small smirk directed at Inuyasha and Kouga leaning against the doors. "This wasn't a bad idea."

"Jaken took off his shirt." Kagome added.

"Oh. Now I see..."

Chapter Text

Kagome was sitting by her desk, watching her students twist their faces in obvious pain of remembering the material they had memorized the previous day. There were some with less painful expressions, calmly writing answers for the test questions, but Kagome wasn't surprised to see how many of her students had decided to actually prepare for the test last night.

She took a sip of her coffee and put her huge white mug on the desk. Well, actually, it wasn't her mug. It belonged to Inuyasha, the history teacher, but he wasn't at school today and Kagome had decided to borrow his cup. Her own cup - a gift from a certain hanyou with inclination to feudal era of Japanese history - was not broken or unavailable for use, she had seen it standing on a shelf just next to Sango's. But Inuyasha's mug. It was... Kagome took another sip of her coffee and decided to be honest with herself.

She could have a small crush on the owner of the mug. But after weeks of working in the school Kagome was still only talking to him during the coffee breaks and knew almost next to nothing about him. Apparently he liked big quantities of sweet coffee. And was pretty territorial about his cup.

The classroom door swung open, drawing attention of some students. Kagome smiled up at the man who glared her way and strode in. He was still wearing his coat. In his right hand he held a familiar looking mug with Kagome's name on it. When he glared at the rows of young people they bowed their heads and resumed their attempts to finish the test.

"Good morning, Mr. Akita, it's nice to see you," Kagome said. The man stood next to her desk, his golden eyes focused on the cup she put on the desk. He placed hers just next to it and swiftly poured her coffee from one container to another.

"Can't you see the difference? Yours even has your name on it!" he growled quietly and hugged his cup to his chest.

"I'm sorry, I kinda got attached to yours," she gave him a sheepish smile. "I can make it up to you?"

"Feh, just keep your distance from my mug," he shrugged and left.

.

"Hey, Inuyasha?" Miroku nudged his friend who just a minute ago had opened the cabinet in the common room and was now staring at the rows of misfit cups. "What's keeping ya?"

Inuyasha didn't reply, so Miroku put the pot on the counter and walked over to his friend - today they were the first ones to arrive.

"Um... Inuyasha? Why are chocolate swords in your mug?" asked the biology teacher after a minute of staring at the same thing Inuyasha was looking - his white mug filled with cookies shaped like katanas and western style swords.

"Sneaky wench."

Miroku was even more surprised when he heard his friend's soft voice and saw a small smirk tugging on the corners of his mouth.

Chapter Text

It was a calm day. It had rained in the morning, but now the humidity was almost gone from the heated air. Souta was playing Heroes V when he heard his sister's voice. He paused to listen to her talking to their mother in the hallway before heading to the bathroom for a much needed bath.

It was a good sign she didn't just run to her room. Souta could hear in her voice she wasn't angry or depressed, just tired. It was an even better sign, it meant when Inuyasha came he wouldn't be an agitated ball of mixed emotions. He would be relatively calm and relaxed. He was going to be easy to coax into spending time with Souta and not sulk on a branch of the Sacred Tree. Souta reached for his cell phone and sent his two friends a short SMS.

"Fists of Fire," was all the SMS said.

Today was the day. It was time for the Inu Fight Club to assemble.

.

When two hours later Inuyasha was kicked out of Kagome's room the hanyou simply sighed and picked up the big yellow bag, which was waiting just outside the door. It was full of supplies, so it seemed Kagome was almost ready to go back. Inuyasha glared at the door as if he could see the girl behind the wood sitting by her desk and studying.

"Just go put the backpack in the well house and find something to do around the house!" she called as if she was aware of him glaring. "I'll be done in an hour or so!"

"Feh!" he replied and walked away. At least she didn't sat him today. Yet.

Inuyasha was determined to keep it that way and wasn't going to argue - after all there was no need to hurry back home. Sango was off to her village, probably with Miroku, and Shippou was perfectly fine with Kaede. They could go through the well even after a dinner and sleep in the future. He nodded to himself when he thought that, his nose telling him Mrs. Higurashi was making a steak.

The hanyou carried the backpack to the well house and put it beside the door. He looked at the well and smiled before sliding the door closed. He turned around and jumped back, hitting the wood when he saw three figures standing a few meters away from him. The intense gaze of three pairs of eyes made him feel uncomfortable.

Three boys were standing near the well house, all in red t-shirts and with hope and determination on their faces. Souta stood a little closer, in front of his friends. He had a big smile on his lips when he bowed to the hanyou.

"Inuyasha-sensei!" he announced. "Your students await your lesson!"

"Oh, shit..."

.

An hour later a certain miko walked out of her room. She was looking for her secret hanyou crush who had failed to come back and nag her after going away with her backpack. It was impossible he had went back in time without her. She had told him to find something to do, but usually it meant he would sit and watch her study.

Kagome walked past the kitchen and noticed her mother standing idly in the window, looking outside. It was weird, her mother didn't have a habit of spacing out while preparing a meal. Intrigued Kagome slid inside and joined her mother. Mrs. Higurashi spared a glance at her daughter and grinned, her gaze returning to watching four boys outside. Kagome frowned when she recognized Souta and his friends punching Inuyasha. Or rather trying to.

When Kagome ran out of the room she heard battle cries of attacking boys and Inuyasha;s gruff replies. She made a few steps towards the group when her brain registered what he was saying. 'Is he... Giving them advices?' the young miko noticed that the hanyou wasn't really in trouble, he was blocking all strikes and while striking himself restraining himself enough not to harm the boys. The kids weren't yelling in anger, but in excitement. 'Yes-senseis' were falling out of their lips as frequently as 'take-this'' and 'kyaaahs'.

Kagome calmly waled back to a small bench, where her grandfather was sitting, observing the sparring. The old man gave her a half smile when she sat down beside him.

"I knew that he had to have some redeeming qualities," Mr. Higurashi teased.

"I heard that, ya old man!" yelled Inuyasha, busy with dodging and blocking three excited and eager boys. Kagome giggled, observing the foursome clad in red and training the old art of fighting. She was so glad that Inuyasha made new friends, even if he was teaching her little brother how to throw punches. She was pretty sure Souta was smart enough not to misuse his new skills.

When five minutes later Mrs. Higurashi came out of the house with a tray with glasses of ice tea she could sdee the field after the battle. Souta and his friends were sitting on the ground, panting while Inuyasha stood there, his arms crossed.

Chapter Text

Kagome looked around the battlefield. Inuyasha was standing as her shield, but maybe 'standing' wasn't the best word. It seemed only his pride and anger kept him from falling to his feet. The tip of Tessaiga was swaying just a little, but it was screaming volumes about how tired and pained the hanyou was. There were pink streaks in his hair, but no one - not even Shippou - wanted to poke fun at him, knowing very well it was because the hair absorbed blood.

Sango would look pretty sexy in her tight, torn in places battle suit, but the drool-worth image marred the fact that the exposed parts of Sango were covered in wounds and blood mixed with mud. She was standing beside Inuyasha, both fighters the last line of defense against Naraku's countless beasts and the vile hanyou himself.

Shippou stood to Inuyasha's other side, his tail twitching in fear. The kitsune, even if he had no battle skills, was aiding his friends with everything he could, providing distraction or engaging the multiple enemies with his little clones. But it seemed he had no tricks left up his sleeve.

Miroku was kneeling behind him, his body shaking when he was trying to control his pain and again use his curse to their benefit, despite the poison he already had sucked in. His face turned green and his breath was labored, but he refused to let go, to give up - just like the rest of them. Kagome was kneeling beside him, her ankle was swollen and couldn't support her anymore. Her bow was useless because there were no arrows left. Behind them was a cliff wall, proving some protection from the attacking youkai. Kagome was perfectly aware that the conclusion of this battle was drawing near. Her friends and herself wouldn't last much longer.

She looked between her friends and foes to the spider hanyou standing on the other side of the battlefield. He was holding his piece of the jewel, grinning at her. She grabbed the bottle with her jewel shards and glanced at it. There were three of them, roughly the same shape and size, glowing pink. An idea came to her mind - one they had discussed as a hypothesis with Miroku some time ago - and she lifted her eyes to meet Inuyasha's golden eye - his other eye was covered by a swollen lid. The hanyou shook his head when she saw the question in her eyes. The miko smiled at him softly and gave a nod.

As they were communicating without words Naraku made his way close to his enemies and stopped twenty meters away from them, laughing evilly. He knew they had no strength left to fight or flee. He supposed they wanted to exchange the jewel shards for their lives. They didn't know he was going to have both. He wanted the jewel, but he also wanted to torment them endlessly.

His laughter stopped when he saw the miko handing the bottle with the shards to the monk. What they were planning to do? Only her touch could purify the jewel, even the monk couldn't do it.

"Thank you, lady Kagome," Miroku's pale lips twisted in a trembling shadow of his charming smile.

"Just do it," Inuyasha growled.

"I don't believe you really said this, Inuyasha," Sango said with all the amusement she could muster. "From all people..."

"Feh!"

"Go, Miroku!" encouraged Shippou. daring to glance back at him. Kagome nodded with a smile. Naraku immediately put a string shield in front of himself, thinking they had a surprise attack planned, even if he couldn't fathom what it could be.

But the Desperate Last Attack of Immense Justice and Everlasting Friendship that should kill the enemy in one strike even if the good guys were almost passed out from wounds and exhaustion never came,

Miroku looked in Naraku's red eyes when he slipped the beads around his right hand just a little. Just enough to...

SSSUP!

...suck in a little glass bottle.

When Naraku finally blinked and his mind came out from the stupor caused by the monk's action there was only one sound filling the air - laughter. He looked up to see a transformed tanuki and cat youkai flying away, the gang safely on their backs.

"See ya later!" Shippou called to the hanyou surrounded by a host of his slaves and turned to help Kagome bandage Inuyasha sprawled out on Hachi's back.

. Epilogue

Somewhere in the Void beyond the world was a chained man. He was floating in nothingness, wrapped tightly in iron chains. His feet were cut off, but his wounds din't bleed anymore. He was waiting for the day he could break free and get his revenge. His eyes weren't focused on anything because there was nothing to look at.

Until...

POP!

...a small glass bottle with shiny gems appeared mere centimeters from his nose.

The man smiled. They weren't Silmarili, but they'd to suffice.

Chapter Text

A pale girl was standing in a doorway of a dark room. She hesitated for a minute before she entered the chamber, her bare feet soundless on the tatami mats. She approached a wall where a scroll was hanging.

In the mirror the girl held the painting on the scroll reflected - a proud looking woman in a patterned kimono, her fan opened, her lips curved in a smirk, her red eyes full of longing. There were wilted flowers under the painting, ones the girl had brought the previous visit.

"Sister."

She sighed and looked around the empty room. Then she gently put her mirror down and walked to a shoji door leading outside of the palace. She opened it soundlessly. A cool breeze played with her white hair when the girl looked outside and in the darkening evening sky.

She heard a rustle and looked around - just in time to see the wind scattering the flowers across the floor. It could be her imagination but just for a briefest of moments the painting looked as if the woman was smirking playfully and the longing in her eyes was replaced by satisfaction.

Chapter Text

It was an important day in Inuyasha's short life. It was the most important one. Today - tonight - he was going to serve his brother officially for the first time. The hour of his performance was drawing near and the young boy was finishing preparing.

He bathed and brushed his hair to make it look more tame. While working he was thinking about all the lords and ladies gathering to dine with his brother tonight. He was merely a half-breed, none of the noble youkai bothered to learn his name or remember he existed, but Inuyasha knew them by scent. His brother was very firm about him learning names and smells of his allies and enemies.

Inuyasha knew that without his brother's help he would be dead by now. He hated the feeling of being despised by everyone in the palace, but since his brother tolerated him no one dared to say or do more than call him a filthy hanyou or push him. It was nothing like the hate humans had shown him. Inuyasha was old enough to know that youkai would be much worse. but they feared to anger Sesshomaru. And Sesshomaru was willing to tolerate him, give him a roof above his head and a purpose in life only because their father had sacrificed his life to save Inuyasha's. And, even with hi blood tainted by his human part he was still pack.

Inuyasha picked up a silver tray with an ornate cup of the finest sake, called the Sake of Sages. It was almost time for him to walk to his brother and offer him the drink, according to tradition Sesshomaru would drink only this one cup of sake tonight.

As Inuyasha entered the chamber he saw a lot of various youkai dressed in finest robes. Many smells, some nice, some nasty, assaulted his twitching nose while his ears swiveled madly to take in all the noises. No one of the youkai standing in the room seemed to notice the little hanyou entering the room and making his way to the throne where Sesshomaru was going to sit upon arriving.

The hanyou stopped when a boar youkai in yellow kimono stopped in front of him.

"Half-breed, it's the Western Lord's cup?" he asked in a low voice. Inuyasha nodded mutely He almost took a step back when he saw the boar take out of his sleeve a small vial and pour a few drops of a transparent liquid in the sake. "It's a blessing, so your dirt won't ruin the ceremony."

Big golden eyes looked down and almost missed a wide smile on the boar's face when he walked away. Inuyasha resumed his walk, but soon was stopped again and a similar thing happened, this time with a female oni.

When finally Inuyasha made it to the throne Sesshomaru was already there, sitting in silence and looking indifferently at the crowd.

"It took you long to get here," he commented. Inuyasha bowed his head.

"I'm sorry, lord Sesshomaru," he whispered, unhappy that his savior was not pleased with him. "Many youkai stopped me on my way."

"You should learn to walk around people and not bother better than you," Sesshomaru picked up the cup. He noticed that his guests were looking at him, many with hope shining in their eyes. "Report."

Inuyasha took a deep breath and stood straight. He started a long list of names and poisons added to Sesshomaru's sake. Some of the mentioned people tried to cry that the hanyou was a liar, but one glance from the Western Lord was enough to silence them.

"You did well, especially since it's your first time, Inuyasha," it was a praise, but spoken with a monotone voice, it sounded more like a comment about weather. Still, Inuyasha smiled and looked up at his brother who took a sip of his sake. Some of his guests gasped. "Let it be known this Sesshomaru is immune to poisons. Your pathetic attempt at killing this one and using this one's half-blooded brother to deliver the poison was a failure from the beginning. This one shall have your heads separated from your bodies when the ceremony is finished."

Inuyasha looked in awe at the full dog youkai when he drank all the sake and put the cup on his tray. The boy almost ran out of the room, happily smiling all the way. He did well, he was useful.

Chapter Text

Bankotsu knew something was wrong the moment he entered their headquarters. There was no smoke coming from any part of their house, indicating that Renkotsu hadn't blown anything to pieces yet. There were no empty bottles and food scattered around.

It was worrying the leader of the band - he knew his men well and being quiet wasn't their thing. They were a group of individuals, all with unique skills and hobbies. There was no way they could not cause havoc.

He had been gone for a whole day and now he was walking down the corridors, looking for his men. They were supposed to be ready to leave the next morning for a job.

He slid open a door and took a step back when smoke flew in his face.

"Ha, I found ya, guys!" he smiled and looked inside to see all six of them gathered around a fire pit. To his surprise only Mukotsu looked back at him and waved.

"They found my herb stash," he said as he motioned to the gang sitting and laying limply around the room. Jakotsu was smiling like an idiot whole looking at a wall, Renkotsu was trying to fit some metal parts of heavens know what into a tiny bottle, Ginkotsu and Kyokotsu had a grunting match in a corner, Suikotsu was trying to have an intelligent conversation with a bowl of peaches.

"When will it wear off?" Bankotsu asked and stepped in carefully, trying not to inhale a strongly smelling smoke. Mukotsu shrugged.

"A few hours top," he replied. "They didn't smoke all of my goods. Wanna try some?"

Bankotsu looked back at his companions. "Sure!"

Chapter Text

The gang was bored. It was raining three days in row and everyone was sitting in Kaede's tiny hut. They had already grew bored with a number of games, had sorted Kaede's herbs, had prepared their weapons and had repaired their belongings. And it was still raining.

Kagome sighed and closed her book. She had her homework finished long ago and now she couldn't look at a textbook anymore. She looked around the hut, seeing everyone trying to pass the time.

"I have an idea!" she exclaimed suddenly, waking Inuyasha up from a light nap.

"What is on your mind, lady Kagome?" asked Miroku.Sango smiled hopefully and Shippou ran to climb in Kagome's lap, eyes shining.

"We can do a small experiment," the young miko explained.

"An experiment, child?" Kaede raised an eyebrow. "What do you wish to do?"

"I want to see where Miroku's wind tunnel leads!" Kagome explained happily.

"Hell no!" Inuyasha growled.

"I must agree with Inuyasha, it's too dangerous to explore the cursed hand of the monk," Sango glared at Miroku.

"Cone on, guys, it can be fun!" Kagome grinned and lifted her hand to silence them. "I won't stick my hand in his hand or anything. I want to put a video camera to hole."

Inuyasha closed his mouth and just glared.

"What's a video camera?" asked Miroku, who was looking at his covered hand.

"It's a contraption which can make moving pictures," Kagome explained. "So you can see events that happened before or far away, as long as you have them recorded."

"Hm."

"Think of it like... You can see actors playing a play as many times as you want, any part of the play."

"Won't they get tired?" asked Shippou.

"They ain't really there, their images are," Inuyasha surprised everyone by answering. He scowled at them. "What?"

"You understand video cameras?" Kagome uttered. The hanyou crossed his arms.

"Feh!" he lifted his nose. "Your mother explains your weird future stuff to me when I'm waiting for your ass at the shrine. I ain't stupid."

"Remarkable!" Miroku looked at his male companion. "I've never thought you would learn about stuff that isn't fighting."

"Keh!"

"I heard that inu youkai are very inclined to explore and learn new things," Sango gave the scowling hanyou a wide smile and then turned to Kagome. "So you want to ue a contraption of your time to inspect what's on the other side of Miroku's palm? It isn't dangerous or anything?"

"It won't hurt him or be dangerous to us..." Kagome decided to ask Inuyasha about his knowledge about modern stuff later. "I mean we must make sure nothing gets sucked in and that's all."

"Hm," Miroku flinched when he saw both girls looking at him, deep in thought. One glance to Inuyasha made him realize the hanyou wouldn't help him now. Shippou looked just happy that there was something to do.

"Children." Kaede said and drew everyone's gaze. "Just don't destroy this old woman's house."

Five minutes later Miroku found himself pinned under a big boulder, curtsey of Shippou, all his friends hidden on one side of the huge stone, which was pretty heavy. On the other side, where his cursed hand was laying limply, stood only Inuyasha, who had his left hand stuck to a similar stone. In his right hand he was holding Kagome's cellphone. While Kagome was still staring at the hanyou he quickly knelt beside Miroku's side.

"You're going to uncover the hand just a little and keep it like that until I tell you," he growled to the monk, who just sighed and nodded.

"Alright."

Kaede slapped her final ward around the two boys and hurried behind the barrier to join the rest. Shippou went to Kagome's backpack for some snacks and missed Inuyasha moving the phone with the camera switched to recording video mode to Miroku's hand.

"Move it," the hanyou growled. Miroku obediently pushed the beads to the side, opeing just a tiny gap in the covering. A strong wind stated to pull things closer, Inuyasha's hair blew around his head and the hanyou grunted as he grasped the phone tighter while letting it approach the wind tunnel. His eyes were focused on the screen where he could see what was recording. Kagome saw surprise in his face just a second before he growled to Miroku and the wind tunnel was covered again. The hanyou, visibly shocked, handed the phone to the young miko.

Kagome grabbed the phone and quickly opened the video, Sango and Kaede looking over her shoulders. The females observed the screen for a minute, before they all looked at Shippou who closed the flap of the backpack and ran to them with a bag of chips.

"Aw, it's over already?" he asked innocently.

"I wish to be freed and see," Miroku said from under his stone. Sango shook herself and quickly tore off the stone a slip of paper, which resulted in making the stone change in a small pebble. The slayer did the same with Inuyasha's stone.

Wordlessly Kagome sat beside the monk and helped Shippou to her lap. Whn they both were looking at the phone screen she started the video again.

Miroku saw a dark space, various shadowy objects stuffed in it. He couldn't make any of them, but he was sure it wasn't a void of nothingness. To his surprise he saw a ray of light coming from above and gasped when the light hit the objects.

"Potato chips, books and ramen cups?" he uttered. A small hand appeared on the screen and grabbed one of the potato chips bags to pull it upwards. Then the light disappeared.

Everyone looked at Shippou's snack.

Then they looked at the overstuffed yellow backpack standing innocently in its corner of Kaede's hut.

Chapter Text

It was full moon again. The sky was clear, cloudless, the wind was blowing gently, carrying all sorts of scents. He left the safety of his small house and straightened his back as he stood in a ray of moonlight, letting the air caress his skin. He felt like a man awaking from a deep slumber.

He sighed deeply and looked up to the sky. Its eternal beauty captured his attention for a long while, but then he heard an echo of a distant howl and focused on the song of a canine lost somewhere in the woods. It made him shiver and his instincts told him to run and be vigilant for a predator was near.

He ignored his instincts - he knew the canine howling and was sure that he wouldn't come after him. The other was merely celebrating the full moon like he was going to - enjoying a run in the forest. Judging from the happy notes in the howl he wasn't alone and this knowledge made the listener smiling warmly.

"Boy? Do you hear something?" he heard his mother's sleepy voice and a moment later she stood beside him.

"Yes, Ma. Tomorrow we will have guests. Inuyasha's howling," he replied in his slow, calm manner. The woman gave a nod and looked at the moon.

"Be careful," she warned him before going inside. She knew her son well and knew there was no way he would stay at home tonight, not with the full moon basking everything in its light. He hummed and then started to walk away from the hut, between his fields. Soon he was beyond the borders of his farm, near to the forest. With a sudden cry of joy he jumped up and as he came down he started to run.

Shadows of the forest were dancing around him, wild scents of animals and plants filling his nose while all kinds of sounds could be heard in the woods. He felt his heart pump his blood with faster pace. Always slow and careful - tonight he was fast and wild. He was prancing around small meadows, jumping over streams and fallen trees. He felt free, awake, wild. Swift as wind he was running through the dark and light landscape, enjoying the moon's rays and the hum of his youki within him. The dirt was soft under his feet, branches swaying as he ran past them.

He was a healer, shy and quiet, afraid of harming someone by an accident because of his huge body and strength, but tonight, while running, he could let go of his fears and worries, of his insecurities. He was still careful not to damage any plant and unwilling to cross paths with a stranger. He was relying purely on his senses and the youki flowing through his blood, basking in the pure joy of running through the forest. Tonight, as long as the full moon was over his head, he was free, he was not a filthy half-breed, he was no freak. He was what he was supposed to be - himself.

Chapter Text

Two girls sat side by side on a blanket under a tree. It was a lovely evening, the sun was already under the horizon, but its light was still coloring the western part of the sky and the clouds with all shades of orange, red and yellow. The eastern skies were much cooler with their dark blues and violets.

A young man was sitting behind the back, reclined against the tree trunk. He seemed to be meditating, but his eyes were going to one of the girls' forms a little too often. A small kitsune was playing with a two tailed cat nearby. A hanyou was napping a little down the hillside, his head pillowed on his hands. Everyone was waiting for their rabbits to cook over a fire close to the blanket.

Kagome was reading a book, Sango was sewing, The slayer sighed softly and looked up from her work to admire the beautiful sky above. Her eyes drifted to something else as it twitched. Her eyes softened and got a mischievous quality as she watched two white triangles mere meter from herself, swiveling lazily, tracking noises from around their little camp.

She felt her own fingers twitch and almost dropped her needle. Kagome reached into her bag and took out of it a notebook and a pencil. The miko wrote something and nudged her best friend. Sango turned her head and her eyes widened when she read a short note. She looked up to Kagome's smiling face and saw that kitsune-like grin on her face.

'Go for it,' was the note.

Sango looked at her, unsure, so Kagome wrote her encouragement.

'Really, I did it once, when I found him sealed. I'm sure he won't mind, as long as you're gentle.'

Sango's eyes widened in surprise upon learning this bit of her friend's story. She glanced back at Miroku, who was observing them curiously, but silently. She decided to follow her heart's desire and with all stealth she could muster she moved forward.

A soft gasp left Sango's mouth as her fingers caught two twitching ears in a gentle grasp and massaged them skillfully - after all she was an expert with petting Kirara, she was sure Inuyasha's ears worked in a similar way.

At the same time she touched the flawlessly soft and surprisingly delicate ears Inuyasha tensed and 'eeped'. Sango blushed fiercely and almost ceased her grip on his ears as she saw a pair of yellow eyes glaring at her.

"Slayer..." Inuyasha growled lowly and Sango was pretty sure he was wondering if he could kick her behind before being sat. Sango easily recognized the tone of the growl - one inu youkai used just before leaping at an opponent.

"Sorry," she rubbed a second longer and retreated her hands. Inuyasha immediately sat to his trademark doggy squat, spinning around to glare and growl right in her face. His cute ears were plastered against his skull while he was baring his fangs at her.

"What the hell?! Who told you you can touch my ears?!"

"Um..." Sango stole a glance back at the rest of their friends. "K-Kagome said she touched them before... And I really just wanted to touch them to see if they're as soft as they look like. I'm sorry, Inuyasha, I didn't mean to..."

She fell silent when she noticed a look of surprise and confusion on his face.

"What? When? You're imagining things, no one touches my ears!" Inuyasha stated proudly. Miroku, Kirara and Shippou sat back and decided to enjoy the show in silence while Kagome gulped and shook her head. Too bad Sango didn't notice the embarrassment and panic in her brown eyes.

"When she met you. She told me that she touched them when you were pinned to the Sacred Tree," she explained, hoping that reminding him about this event would make his ire subside. It was obvious to everyone that he was letting Kagome to get away with much more than he would someone else. Too bad Inuyasha didn't remember the mentioned event.

"Um, Sango..." Kagome tried and Inuyasha glared at her. Sango looked back and finally noticed the blush coloring Kagome's cheeks. A matching one bloomed on Inuyasha's face. "Uh..."

"It seems lady Kagome took the privilege to caress Inuyasha's ears while he was still under the seal," Miroku said in mirth. "I am astounded, my ladies, I would never think about caressing a girl in her sleep, without her consent..." Miroku shook his head and missed the notebook flying at his head.

"Idiot," muttered Shippou when Miroku groaned in pain when the notebook hit his nose.

"You grab all female butts without consent, monk!" Sango made a good impression of Inuyasha, blushing brightly and turning to the annoyed hanyou. "We're really sorry, Inuyasha. It's just..."

"They were so cute and fluffy and you looked so peaceful and handsome," Kagome uttered softly and her gaze dropped to her lap. "Don't be mad at us... We'll make it up to you... We'll make you an extra bowl of ramen if you want to."

"Keh! They ain't cute!" Inuyasha put his hands in his sleeves, averting his own eyes, but not stopping scowling. Sango smiled to herself in relief when she heard his gruff words. "Make it two cups. And don't ya think about touching 'em again!"

"Okay," Sango let her smile appear on her lips and gave a nod at the scowling hanyou. When she finally sat beside Kagome she picked up her pencil and write on the same side.

'Worth it.'

Both girls looked in each other's eyes and smiled before standing up and going to tend to their supper, with two extra cups of ramen as an offering to one hanyou with the softest ears in the feudal era.

Chapter Text

A cat was slowly making its way towards her. It was submissive and moving with careful steps. She sighed and flickered a tail.

She was a superior being, no ordinary cat could just approach her. Felines were known as proud beings who followed their own paths, but they could recognize - and respect - those more powerful than them.

Lazily she looked above the cat, as if ignoring it. She spotted her humanoid companions - the kitsune kitten was drawing something, the old and the young miko sorting herbs, the hanyou perched on a nice thick branch of a tree above their heads and napping. Her own kitten - even if she was a human - was practicing throwing knives nearby while her intended was watching her. It was a nice afternoon and her tired group was resting in their home village.

A sudden soft noise drew her attention and she looked back to the cat. It was laying on its belly, tail flat against the ground behind it. A small offering of a fish was presented to her. She regally lifted her head and flickered both her tails as a sign of approval of the offering. Then she stood up slowly and approached the cat to lick its nose in a blessing. Then she snatched the fish and ignored the feline who ran away happily.

Kirara quickly ate her fish and decided to join the inu hanyou for a nap. His branch was basked in warm sunlight and his body would be a nice pillow. She leapt up with ease and landed with all her feet on Inuyasha's belly, waking him rather rudely.

"Oi!" she looked in a pair of golden eyes and purred an apology for disturbing his nap. He might be a dog, but there was no hate between them. As she kneaded his belly and curled up on top of the hanyou Kirara purred even louder. "Keh."

When Sango and Miroku joined Kagome and Kaede under the tree where they were sitting the youkai slayer couldn't hide a tiny smile which appeared on her lips when she saw Kirara napping in her favorite spot - on Inuyasha's chest.

Chapter Text

Shippou was pulling Kagome behind himself.

"Come, come, Kagome!" he exclaimed, trying to prompt her to walk faster. The kitsune didn't realize that making Kagome run while bent down to his height was a bad idea - she was barely avoiding stumbling over her own feet in her haste to follow him. He was almost giddy, smiling wickedly.

Kagome wasn't sure why the boy was practically dragging her in direction of a small hill - or rather a tiny cluster of willows under its foot. It was a little odd, but she suspected she would learn about the reason of this behavior soon.

As they passed by the thick veil of willow branches she saw Kaede sitting on edge of something that looked like a mud pool with various herbs growing around it. The miko was in the process of wiping mud from her face. Kagome's eyes narrowed when she saw Inuyasha who just now stood from his doggie squat and wiped his hands from the same substance. Kagome didn't notice the vile grin on Shippou's face and Kaede's calm behavior as she stomped to the unsuspecting hanyou. How could he throw mud at their older friend and advisor? He was always rude towards her, never calling her by her name or using polite honorifics, but throwing mud at the poor old lady?

"Wanna more of this shit?" Inuyasha threw this question at the sitting woman, but Kaede never had a chance to reply.

"Inuyasha!" Kagome growled and saw the hanyou's ears plaster against his skull as he looked at her. "Sit! You asshole!"

And sat he did, straight into the muddy depths. Luckily to him the depths weren't really very deep so he avoided a disgraceful death by drowning in dirt.

"Oi! What the hell?" he yelled as soon as he spat the mud. Shippou started to laugh at the fellow boy's misfortune, standing next to him on a path of grass. Kaede chuckled and patted Inuyasha's arm.

"Don't be irate, after rinsing yer face ye shall find that yer skin is flawless and wrinkle free. This mud has a wonderful influence on one's skin," she couldn't conceal the mirth in her voice and it was when Kagome realized she could misused the beads on an innocent boy.

"Ahaha, you'll have a pretty face like Sesshomaru!" Shippou taunted, grinning in the mud-covered face of the older boy. He didn't notice an arm clad in a dirty red cloth as it lifted and then pushed the kitsune in the mud just next to the rising hanyou.

"Um..." Kagome uttered as she started to play with the hem of her shirt nervously. She could feel the blazing angry glare of the silver-haired boy on her. "S-sorry?"

"Save it," Inuyasha leapt away in search of a river.

Probably to wash his face as soon as possible, to minimalize the possibility of having a skin as girly as his prick of a half-brother.

Chapter Text

It was the evening of the second day of Kagome's stay in the Modern Era. It was known to all members of the gang the girl was bound to come back (or be dragged back) the next morning.

Everyone was preparing for the next day - knowing Inuyasha they were going to leave for the hunt as soon as possible. Sango finished packing her gear, Miroku stashed all his sacred papers, Kaede prepared a small bag of herbs for them to take as a feudal first aid kit. Even Inuyasha partook in preparations - by sharpening Tessaiga and cutting firewood for Kaede to use while they were gone. He finally came back inside Kaede's hut when it was almost dark, still annoyed at Shippou. who had been pranking him mercilessly since this morning.

"I want to wake up early to go to the well and wait for Kagome," said Shippou as he curled in a ball in his corner. He glared at Inuyasha. "If the baka goes to meet her at the well she might just jump back."

"Shut up!" Inuyasha growled and walked out of the hut, followed by some giggles from the rest of the gang. The hanyou spent an hour sulking on his sulking branch before a wicked idea came to his mind. With a stealth and speed of a predator he ran to the well, jumped through time and found himself in Kagome's room in a matter of minutes.

One sniff made him realize the miko was downstairs, probably enjoying dinner with her family. Inuyasha looked around and after a minute exited the room through the window.

Chuckling in his mind the hanyou entered the hut where everyone was already asleep. He came close to Shippou and put an object he was holding near the sleeping kid. When he returned to Kagome's time he found the girl kneeling beside her bed and looking under it.

"What's wrong?" he asked when she looked up to him.

"I can't find my alarm clock," she explained.

"Don't worry about it, I'll wake up up when it's time to go," he assured her with a wide smirk.

And he did just that - the next morning he patted Kagome's shoulder and made sure she was awake before leaving her room to let hr change. He almost could hear the blasted contraption going off in Kaede's hut, right beside the runt's ear.

Chapter Text

It started one day with little things - flowers pressed between her things, delicate and smelling so sweetly. Then came poems - little ones, written nicely and with great care.

She wasn't sure who was so stealthy to put them in her things without her noticing. They were usually in her bag or in her pouches containing various equipement of her profession. Once she fould a poem between the layers of her obi.

The nature of the poems helped her in narrowing the list of suspects down to two people - Miroku and Inuyasha. Shippou's gifts were usually only for Kagome (besides he was way too young to know some things mentioned in the poems or to write so skillfully) and the miko was never shy about giving her presents officially. So those two were not likelyy to leave pretty flowers and romantic haiku. While Inuyasha was pretty skilled with a brush he was no poet and picking flowers wasn't his thing. So it seemed the little gifts of affection were from Miroku.

It was nice to know he could do more than throw cheesy pick up lines or grope girls, but it wasn't enough to win Sango's heart. Not with him acting like he was - wooing all females around. Well, with Kagome being an exception.

He was showing his interest in her by leaving her little gifts, and by groping her, but it was a different matter and one she could punish him for in a painful way, so she decided to give him a sign of her own.

Kagome, Shippou and Inuyasha were looking at Sango throwing pieces of paper and dried flowers in the flame, and Miroku observing her like a hawk. The slayer was muttering while doing that:

"Three girls groped, fourteeen asked if they would bear his kids, seven told that they will have many children while reading their palms... All of this adds up and soon I will run out of stuff to burn..."

Chapter Text

The whole group looked at each other. They were ready to go back to Kaede's, to bring Shippou and Kirara a medicine from Jinenji. Unluckily their destination was quite a way away and after a fight with a youkai the previous day Sango couldn't walk because of a twisted ankle.

Inuyasha was glaring at Sango's feet, as if desiring noshing more to maim them.

"I think we can move fast back if we run," Kagome sighed.

"You won't keep up," Inuyasha pointed out matter-of-factly and earned a scowl.

"You'll carry me, duh!" the miko said. Miroku gave an enthusiastic nod and presented his back to the rest of the group.

"Yes," he said, looking back at them. "And I can carry the lovely Sango, so she won't have to stand on her delicate foot."

Sango bit her bottom lip as she looked at Kagome, already standing behind a squatting hanyou, who's eyes were shining with hope for moving already, and a monk, his eyes shining with hope, but of a different kind.

Ten minutes later Inuyasha was running, grumbling under his breath. He wasn't fooling anyone, everyone knew he was glad that they were nearing home and their unhealthy companions. Miroku was running beside him, keeping up somehow.

"I still don't understand why the both of you decided to ride on his back," Miroku complained. "I am perfectly capable of carrying a lovely maiden as far as it is needed."

"And fondling her all the way. We'll pass," Kagome said and turned her head to smile at Sango, both girls seated on the huge boomerang carried by their hanyou friend, just like the first time they had met. Sango blushed and patted Inuyasha's shoulder awkwardly.

"Thanks for the lift, Inuyasha," she said quietly. "I owe you one."

"Keh!"

Chapter Text

When Kagome brought the big ceramic jar from the modern era with odd letters spelling in an 'English' language "cookies" he wasn't sure what to think about the container. It was big and painted blue, quite pretty.

But the cookies it held practically evaporated.

Shippou wasn't sure how this happened, but he suspected that the jar was haunted and a vile monster was eating the cookies while no one was watching. To be honest his first suspect was Inuyasha, but after a short sniffing session it was clear that the hanyou was innocent. At least when it came to this crime. The kitsune was often checking the container to count the cookies and each time he counted there were one or two missing.

So a monster, hidden in the jug, was responsible for eating all Shippou's treats. At first it wasn't that bad, because there was plenty, but Kagome couldn't just bring more cookies every time she went through the well. Shippou knew he had to do something.

He thought for a long time before a brilliant idea came to his mind. It was really simple and Shippou was pretty proud of himself.

One afternoon he climbed in the jar, shifting his form to be a little smaller so he could fit with the rest of the cookies. He was munching on them while waiting for the thief to show up. It was good he had something to eat because the wait was growing long and he was sure he missed lunch.

It was near supper when Shippou realized one terrifying fact - there were no more cookies. The monster somehow managed to sneak by his vigilant little self and steal his sugary treats right from under his nose. Shippou spent the remaining of the day sulking beside his empty cookie jar.

The only good thing was he wasn't hungry anymore.

Chapter Text

He landed in Royakan's Forest and ran the last couple of kilometers to the mountainside where the den of his friend was located. Flying was sure fun, but he loved the feel of the dirt under his paws, the sway of tree limbs as he was passing them, the pure joy of muscles flexing under his skin. Somewhere during the run he let his form change and shrink. What was a huge white dog one minute the next was a tall man in white kimono, a ponytail of silver hair and furry mokomoko flying behind him as he made his way to a huge cave entrance.

He stood there for a minute, but the other youkai didn't come out. It was unusual, Royakan should be already greeting him and telling him to come in. The wolf youkai guardian of the forest was a kind person, a good host. He wouldn't let a guest just stand before his door. Luckily his guest wasn't the shy type, who would patiently wait for an invitation.

He wasted a moment to take a long sniff of the air around, just to make sure there was no danger. Who knew, maybe Royakan was wounded? Or there was a threat keeping him hidden? But there was no smell of a youkai in the air. No, instead there was a smell of a young human woman. He growled as he walked in, his step soundless. A young human female in a youkai's den could be only a miko desiring to kill the youkai. Who knew, maybe Royakan was already...

His step faltered when he heard a soft laughter from the cave located ahead of him and being Royakan's main room. He sneaked closer carefully, his brows rising when heard a low chuckle - it was definitely Royakan's voice. But why was he laughing with a miko? It didn't make sense!

"Oi, stinking miko!" he jumped into the cave, tall and threatening, his youki swirling around him. He wanted to scare the woman, warn her that she would die if Royakan was harmed in any way. But his words died on his lips. He managed to make a few sounds, but no one, even himself, could decipher them.

Royakan was sitting by a low table, holding a sandal in his hands - it was obvious he had been repairing a broken strap. On the other side of the table, pouring tea to two cups, sat a beautiful human maiden, her black hair flowing down her back and pooling behind her. Her multi-layered kimono and elegant movements when she put the pot on the table showing her high rank in human society. The female, who was startled at first, finished pouring tea and picked up her cup. Royakan was too busy staring at his new guest to notice his own drink standing in front of him.

"Royakan-kun, your tea will get cold," she reminded him and the wolf shook visibly. He cleared his throat.

"Touga-sama," he licked his lips. "This is Izayoi-hime and she bears no ill-will towards me. Please, don't be rude as you usually are, she's my dear friend."

The daiyoukai's golden eyes widened a little before he stood in a more relaxed position and inclined his head royally.

"My apologies, princess, I was merely worried about my friend's well-being," he said.

The female gave him a cool glance and turned her head to look at Royakan. Well, this was awkward, human females were usually gawking at him and sighing dreamily, not glaring. Well, all those who weren't running away screaming in terror. He was so focused on being confused that he realized he was walking to sit beside the table when he was already close to it.

"May I have a cup of tea?" he asked. Royakan gave a nod and jumped up to fetch a cup for him. Meanwhile the daiyoukai observed the female, who seemed to be more focused on her tea, looking down in her cup. He couldn't smell fear or disgust from her, in fact she smelled kinda nice.

"Why aren't you afraid?" he couldn't help but ask.

"Should I be? You're obviously Royakan-kun's friend and I know he's a good judge of characters. He wouldn't befriend a foul creature," she glanced at him and he found himself mesmerized by the depth of her big eyes. Sadly, she quickly looked down, like any well-mannered female. He opened his mouth to say something before he heard her sweet voice, soft like a whisper of the wind. "Besides,Royakan-kun told me a lot about you."

"Huh? What did he say?" he tilted his head like a curious puppy. He felt that had he have a tail it would be wagging.

"Well..."

"I found one!" Royakan put on the table a wooden bowl, smiling happily. The lady stared at the container almost dropping hers. Touga glared.

"Why am I to drink in a wooden cup? Ya have porcelain ones!" he complained.

"Um... Touga-sama..." Royakan looked down, twirling his thumbs like a little pup. "You see... After the last time you broke six of them..."

"I was angry!" he exclaimed. "Like really bad!"

How could his friend treat him like this, and in front of a lovely maiden? So he broke a few cups, big deal. Royakan apologized, but refused to bring his grandmother's priceless porcelain cups. Touga growled and scowled, his hands stuck in his sleeves, as if telling his friend he wasn't going to let him win the stare battle.

Suddenly both youkai jumped up when they heard the sound of a liquid being poured in a vessel, mixed with a soft giggle.

"You look cute when you're pouting, Touga-sama," the princess voiced her opinion.

"I don't pout. Daiyoukai don't pout," Touga pouted and glared at the tea cup in front of him. This time Royakan joined Izayoi's giggle with a chuckle of his own.

"Keh! You're going to get it, wolf!" Touga warned his friend, who sat down and resumed repairing the sandal. "Why are you repairing it? What happened?" asked the inu youkai when he couldn't contain his curiosity much longer.

"Oh, I believe the story of this sandal belongs to the lady Izayoi," Royakan grinned at the female who blushed fiercely.

No one of the three gathered around the table knew it was but the first of many times they were going to gather like this and share stories.

Chapter Text

="Sit!"

And sat he did, his face kissing the ground. He growled and got up, glaring at the little miko.

"I don't understand you. Why are you fighting lady Kagome so often?" said Miroku and patted his shoulder. "I mean you can't be that stupid..."

"I ain't stupid! She is!" Inuyasha exclaimed. Sango and Shippou shook their heads while Kagome pointed a finger at the hanyou.

"Sit!"

This time there was an innocent victim to the command - somehow Miroku ended up dragged down with Inuyasha. The monk blinked a few times and looked up to voice his surprise and complain about being subdued for nothing.

"Ah, now I see," he said. To Kagome's horror his gaze was fixed on her short skirt. She shrieked and jumped back in the same minute Inuyasha's hand came up to push Miroku's face in the dirt. Miroku chuckled.

"Now I understand your point of view, my friend," he said to the other male who just growled at him. "I would never think you're following the same philosophy of seeing heaven by suffering some pain."

"Shut up, monk, or she's gonna make a rosary for ya."

"I'm looking up to this most wonderful of gifts," Miroku couldn't help bit grin. It quickly became a cringe when three lumps magically appeared on his head.

Chapter Text

It was a lovely day, with birds chirping in the trees of Royakan's Forest. Sunlight was filtered through fresh leaves, dancing on the forest floor.

A certain daiyoukai general and a forest guardian sat on a hilltop, observing a path running in a wide arc around the foot of the hill, a steam running on the other side of the rarely used road.

Touga sighed happily - the day was going to get even lovelier pretty soon. A certain human princess was on her way with some good food. She always brought some food while visiting with her youkai friends.

Suddenly she came into view while walking from behind a cluster of trees and heading towards the spot where a thin path was leading from the road up the hill. Royakan made a happy noise and Touga smiled at the glutton. Her food was amazing, she smelled so nice and looked like an incarnation of loveliness. Her long braid of black hair was swaying as she went. a basked on her left elbow while a walking stick taller than herself in her right. He could hear the rhythmic thumping of the stick against the road.

He caught a movement coming from behind a pile of rocks. A man jumped out from behind it and stood in front of the woman. He was dressed in rags and had a short sword in hand. Touga growled when he saw the female take a step back and put her basket on the ground. The man laughed.

"Pretty, eh?" he exclaimed. "Good to be my wife!"

Touga was about to jump forward and rescue the princess, rage fogging his golden eye with red. But as he stood from the grass he felt Royakan's hand grasping his shoulder.

"Don't!" the wolf exclaimed. Touga was about to snap at his friend who obviously didn't understand the situation, but a loud scream stopped him.

It wasn't a shriek of a scared female.

It was a shriek of a male hit in his treasure - hard.

When Touga looked back to the road he saw Izayoi holding her stick with both hands and the bandit falling to his knees in front of her. He dropped his sword and put his hands around his crotch, shielding his family gems a little belatedly. Izayoi didn't use his distraction to flee - she did the opposite and launched another attack, her stick moving fast and hitting the man's side.

And it was then that her voice finally rang in the morning air, strong and full of rage and much louder than the grunts and cries of pain of the man.

"You mud-eating fucker. You son of a goat-fucking, flea-bitten oni! You moronic excuse for a man with no brain and balls the size of a rice grain! You stinking horse shit! You piss-drinking whore of a half-blind, toothless pig! You asshole cousin of a bald sheep-fucking bastard son of a wild boar and a board with a hole in the center!"

The banding groaned in pain and tried to grab for his sword and got the thick stick hitting his forearm with enough force to make the man scream in pain.

"You ass of a man without no honor, you think I'll let you raise a sword on the daughter of the lord of this land?! Birds ate your brain, you rat's asswipe!"

"Shouldn't we..." Touga swallowed. "Shouldn't we rescue.. him?

Royakan stared at him in disbelief.

"Touga-sama!" he breathed out. "Do you really want to go down there? Now?"

The daiyoukai turned his gaze back to the bandit who ceased his attempts to crawl away from the fragile-looking maiden.

"Hn."

Chapter Text

Kagome and Sango entered a small meadow where a hot spring was located. It was their favorite one - a big pool of water, with submerged rocks one could sit upon or lean against. The girls quickly undressed and made their way in the water, enjoying the feeling of the heat relaxing their muscles after a long day of marching. Talking and exchanging bottles of body wash and shampoo the girls were enjoying their time.

Suddenly a gust of wind caught their attention. Sango had a knife in hand in no time while Kagome turned to face the youkai.

"Yo," said Kagura. Kanna gave a small nod. The girls in the pool replied with their own greetings and watched the newcomers disrobing and entering the water. Kanna sighed and smiled faintly. Kagura undid her hair and shook her head. "Gods, I hate that bastard."

"I was worried you couldn't make it," said Sango and passed the shampoo to the wind sorceress.

"Thanks," she nodded. "Luckily he finally sat down in his corner and started talking to himself and cackling so we could sneak away."

"He's most distracted while planning," Kanna voiced her opinion. At the moment she spoke a whirlwind came to a stop in front of the pool, pieces of fur and ribbons flying around as the newcomer shed their coverings.

"Yay!" with a loud splash Ayame joined the party and went to hug Kagome. "Hi, cousin!"

"Cousin?" Kagura blinked. Kagome blushed when Ayame wrapped an arm around her shoulders.

"You see, she's a pack-sister of my fiancée." the she-wolf explained. "So she's pack to me."

"Ah, yeah," Kagome nodded. "And we figured out we're kinda cousins."

"Okay, if it works for you," Kagura shrugged. "You always had a weak spot for canines. Speaking of canines - I kinda expected that Inuyasha could sniff out we're using the same shampoo. You know, the last time we battled..."

"Ah," the miko shrugged. "I told him that you probably use some perfumes that smell the same or have a similar shampoo."

"Yeah," Sango added. "It's not like be has a vast knowledge about what girls normally use while bathing. It's not like he used to peep at girls or sniff around hot springs."

"I beg to differ," Kikyou entered the meadow and gave everyone a polite nod.

"Huh?" Kagome blinked.

"Yes. He once watched me when I was cleansing myself," the undead miko disrobed and folded her kimono before joining the rest of the group. Kagura snorted.

"It hardly counts as peeping, you were probably in your kosode and only pouring cold water over yourself."

"True," Kikyou nodded. "Still, he saw me half undressed."

"He saw Kagome naked, a bunch of times," the slayer grinned.

"Sango!" Kagome exclaimed with a blush. Even Kikyou and Kanna joined in the merry laughing. "If there's a competition for being seen naked in a bath then Sango holds the first place, with how many times Miroku- Aaargh!" the future-born miko ran to hide behind Ayame when Sango splashed water at her.

"Ah," Kagura started to rinse her hair from the shampoo. "I love our bath club."

"And Kagome's cosmetics," Kanna added and poured some body wash on her palm. Kagome smiled warmly when all the females in the water hummed in agreement.

"Rin has bad news." a soft voice broke the silence which was ruling over the hot spring for a minute. Everyone looked at the little girl standing between piles of discarded robes. "Lord Sesshomaru didn't want to come to bathe with Rin because he says he's a male."

"Don't worry, Rin." Kagome soothed. "One day he'll embrace his true femininity."

Chapter Text

Sesshomaru was fighting Inuyasha and the rest of the gang was simply standing nearby and observing them battle. It was not the first time the brothers were fighting, no was it the most brutal of fights - no one was wounded so far.

Sango was observing the dog fight with curiosity and amazement - they were moving so gracefully, so fluidly, their fangs and claws flashing, their youki swirling around them and causing the dust to lift as if there was wind to pick it up. It was so rare to see a good fight like this, Sango could learn from both daiyoukai and hanyou.

Suddenly she felt a hand stroke her rear.

Something within Sango's mind snapped and she turned on her heel to face the monk.

"You! How dare you grope me when you're perfectly aware I hate it!" she exclaimed with fire in her eyes, not noticing that both inu brothers stopped fighting and looked her way. Shippou clung to Kagome's shoulder while Kirara took refuge on the miko's other arm. Miroku, who was probably expecting a slap, blinked at the slayer.

"Oh, Sango..." he started.

"And you're flirting with practically anything which is remotely female! I hate your behavior!" the slayer spun on her feet again and in a few leaps approached the nearest male. She grasped his clawed hand and looked in a pair of golden, a bit confused eyes.

"Will you consider siring my child?"

As the eyes blinked Sango finally realized what had happened. She felt a blush cover her face when the daiyoukai's mouth twitched. He spared a glance at his brother, who had his jaw hanging slack and at the rest of his pack. Then he gazed back at the bold slayer.

A wicked youkai grin appeared on his lips for just a second.

"Your request shall be granted," Sesshomaru stated and wrapped his hand around Sango's waist to lead her away from the group. "Fear not, this one's superior seed shall make you pupped in no time."

"Butbutbut...!" Sango struggled, trying to get free. Sesshomaru merely tightened his grip on her. "I didn't..."

"Fear not, slayer," Sesshomaru whispered, knowing Inuyasha and the other youkai of the pack could hear him while the humans couldn't. "This one has no desire to sire half-breeds or lay with you. Yet he wishes to see the monk's face."

Meanwhile Inuyasha sheathed his sword and started to look up to the trees, obviously looking for a nice nap branch. Kagome was too stunned to speak or move, but when Shippou started to giggle something in her ear she seemed to relax and a spark appeared in her eye. The hanyou found a branch and jumped up to sit on it.

"Inuyasha!" Miroku pointed after Sesshomaru and Sango who were barely visible from behind the trees of the forest. "What are you doing? Shouldn't we..."

"Leave it, she's gonna return when Sesshomaru finishes with her. Knowing him we have at least a day," the hanyou grumbled and rested comfortably. "Wake me up when it's time for ramen."

Miroku opened and closed his mouth for a minute when he saw that Kagome and the small youkai weren't inclined to run after the pair. Finally he ran after them himself.

"Sango! Don't do it!" could be heard echoing through the forest.

"Idiot," stated Shippou when the rest started to laugh, sure the troubled boy was too far to hear them.

"That he is," Sango entered the little meadow where they were waiting, covering her smirk with a hand. Inuyasha spotted a glimpse of white mokomoko in the shadows of the trees and gave a little nod, flashing his fangs in a wide grin.

Chapter Text

Sango took a place beside Kagome and hugged Kirara when the cat jumped to her lap. They still could hear Miroku's frantic exclamations somewhere in the forest. Sango could hear Inuyasha snickering above her head. The slayer and kitsune exchanged a few comments, but realized that the miko was oddly silent.

"Kagome? About what are you thinking?" asked Shippou after a minute, noticing that the miko was looking deep in thought.

"You know what, Sango," Kagome started slowly and turned to look at the other girl. "You had a good idea, grabbing Sesshomaru like you did..."

"Well, actually..." Sango blushed. "I was going to grab Inuyasha's hand. I would never ask Sesshomaru such a thing..." Sango confessed sheepishly. "It was just a crazy idea..."

"But it seems to work," Shippou pointed out. Kagome nodded.

"You know..." Kagome continued as if they never interrupted her, her voice thoughtful. "Next time we catch a glimpse of a whirlwind or I sense a pair of fast-moving jewel shards..." Sango noticed that the snickering above her head stopped abruptly. "I might go to see Kouga. You know, to make sure he's alright. Or see if he has some information about Naraku. You know, alone without telling anyone."

"The fuck you're going to see the stinking wolf!" Inuyasha suddenly landed just in front of the miko. Shippou practically reported from Kagome's shoulder to a spot behind Sango's back.

"And who's going to stop me?" Kagome asked. The next second she shrieked when she found herself hanging from Inuyasha's shoulder and being carried away from the stunned Sango. "Inuyasha!"

"I guess we can start to make a camp," Sango said when she saw the pair disappear behind the trees. The miko waved to her before being carried away.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was sitting under the Sacred Tree, his eyes closed. He appeared to be deep in thought or asleep, only his ears were twitching, indicating awareness of his surroundings. He heard a soft giggle and looked up to see Rin, who was standing a little away from him. She had her hands hidden behind her back and was looking at him with those big, innocent eyes.

"Hi, kid. What do you have there?" he asked. Rin approached him with a soft smile. She looked like Kagome, looking at him with such a friendly, kind expression on her face.

"Rin brought you a flower, lord Inuyasha," she presented him a big red wild flower.

"A flower, for me? Why?" he cocked his head to the side. Rin gave a nod of confirmation .

"Yes. You seemed to be sad, lord Inuyasha, so Rin brought you a flower because they always make people smile. And Rin wants you to smile."

"Feh, guys don't get flowers," he replied gruffly. He saw her eyes grow darker when she thought he didn't like her gift. "Come 'ere, kid, give me this flower."

Before Rin could do anything she found herself sitting in front of the hanyou, facing away from him. She opened her mouth to ask him what he was doing, but felt his fingers comb through her hair. In matter of a few minutes Inuyasha braided her hair and put the red flower between the curls of her hair.

"Here. Flowers look better on girls," he said gruffly and looked away from the girl, who ran her hands along her thick braid to inspect the intricate plait.

"Thank you, lord Inuyasha!" she hugged him suddenly and jumped to her feet. "Rin will show everyone what pretty hair do you can make! Everyone will want you to braid their hair!"

"Better no-" Inuyasha sighed. For a petite human wench Rin was pretty fast.

He could already hear Miroku's twin's squeals of delight and questions where's uncle Inu.

It seemed it was the right time to run to safety of Kagome's herb garden.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha woke up with a huge headache and some voices talkig nearby. He groggily looked around and tried to sit up. Only then he realized that he couldn't move.

He was laying on his back in a small tent. He could see shadows of tree limbs and spots of sunlight indicating the tent was located in a forest, presumably the one behind the shrine. The tent was almost empty, there were only a few boxes and bottles in one corner. He had ropes tied around his ankles and wrists, they smelled of the shed where gramps Higurashi was holding his stuff, so Inuyasha figured out he couldn't tear them because they were sacred or something. He had something like a balled cloth in his mouth and couldn't spit it out because there was another piece of cloth wrapped around his head to prevent this. But this wasn't the most disturbing thing.

The most disturbing thing was that besides the ropes and his beads he had nothing on. His robes were gone - his fire rat and hakama no where in sight. Even his fundoshi was missing. Tessaiga was not on his hip, too. A wide red and golden ribbon was wound around his hips, with a huge bow wrapped loosely around his most private part. Two puddles of whipped cream were on his chest, topped with two strawberries covering his nipples.

...Someone did this to him...

'Damn,' he struggled, but the bonds held him tight. He managed only to dislocate a strawberry which slid down his chest to rest in the center of his belly.

His head was aching and Inuyasha couldn't remember what had happened. The last thing he remembered was him coming out of the well house to fetch Kagome and her friends approaching him and asking for help. They wanted him to help them with some stupid thing... Making dream come true or some other bullshit...? Like a birthday? Who celebrated birthdays, anyway?

He tried to listen to the voices, hoping to at least learn who was around the tent.

"Okay," he heard one of Kagome's friends whisper. "When she comes try to act cool, okay? She can't expect a thing."

"Uh-huh," replied another voice. Inuyasha's ears twitched when he heard a giggle. "I got a message from Ayumi, they're on their way."

'Damn it! They want to do something to Kagome!' Inuyasha resumed struggling, but the sacred rope held well. 'I knew it! She shouldn't tell them a thing! And especially not about the fucking jewel! Fuck it all!'

He had to get free and save the kind hearted wench before these three bitches do something to her and steal the jewel shards. One could think that Naraku's death would put an end to things like this, but the jewel was shattered again and there were new foes to defeat in order to complete it again. And it seemed some of them were lurking in the future, waiting for the right time to strike. And, unfortunately for the jewel shards hunters, this time came today.

He was in the middle of cursing himself for letting his guard down around the trio and letting them knock him unconscious. And now he couldn't protect Kagome. And there was no chance she could do it herself, she wouldn't suspect a trap. Suddenly all his cursing came to an abrupt halt when he heard Kagome's voice greeting the duo.

"Hi, guys! Why are we... Oh, are we having a sleepover? That's so cool!"

"Yeah, Kagome. Okay, we went you to put this on now," said one of the girls, two other giggled.

"You won't peek, right?" the second made sure.

"Promise," Kagome laughed. Inuyasha just closed his eyes. The stupid wench probably let them blindfold her. Because she would be more useless not seeing the trap.

Inuyasha wanted to howl when he saw the zipper of the tent entrance slide open.

.

Kagome and Ayumi were walking through the forest behind Kagome's house. The other girl was grinning and bouncing giddily.

"I can't wait!" she explained when Kagome asked her about it. "We planned everything, Yuka, Eri and I, but we had a certain someone help us. Without him nothing of this would be possible."

"Ah," Kagome smiled. 'So they asked Hojo for help in putting together the surprise party for my eighteen birthday? I hope he won't be there'z, I'm not in the right mood to see him and battle his cluelessness,' she thought tiredly. "Will you tell me what the secret is?"

"Nope!" Soon they joined Yuka and Eri on a small meadow deep in the forest. Kagome spotted a tent big enough to fit four people behind them and she smiled with relief. It seemed the special gift was a sleepover in the forest with the trio - she could handle it. In the forest was one of her favorite places to sleep, after years of sleeping outside in the past. Still, it would be a little odd, without Inuyasha watching over her. Kagome shrugged when she was presented a blindfold to wrap around her head. It seemed the girls had everything planned, so there would be probably a lot of gaming and eating snacks, so she wouldn't have time to think about not having her hanyou protector around.

Actually, she felt a bit sad he was not there. She had hoped for him to come this morning and celebrate with her and her friends here. And now it was late afternoon and he was no where in sight. Kagome tied the cloth and shrugged, deciding to focus on spending quality time with her friends, not worrying about a hanyou probably sulking somewhere. She was going to go to the past the next day and she would just make sure to give him the biggest piece of the birthday cake. This should appease him. Who knew, he could even get so happy that he'd grab her and kiss - just like he had done when they had killed Naraku the last month. A girl can dream, right?

She stopped thinking about Inuyasha when her friends guided her to the tent and instructed her to get inside, count to ten and then remove the blindfold. They probably had a big cake prepared and Kagome was giggling with them when they practically pushed her in.

"I'm going, I'm going, don't push me!" she said as she crawled inside and moved to make room for whoever was going to enter after her. To her surprise she heard the zipper going back down.

"Eh, girls?"

"Okay, Kags, sweetie! It's all set!" called Ayumi. "We locked the tent and won't open it before we come back tomorrow morning!"

"Wh-what?" Kagome stuttered.

"Yeah. Hope you like strawberries!" Yuka giggled.

"Don't forget to use the protection we left you!" advised Eri happily. "It's in a blue box between the boxes with some food and drink!"

"Have fun and happy birthday, Kagome," they called together and then ran away. Only then Kagome thought about removing the stupid blindfold. What were they thinking? It wasn't nice to prank someone at their birthday!

When the blindfold fell to her lap Kagome kinda forgot about her friends and their antics.

Inuyasha glared and grumbled something behind his gag, his cheeks red like his missing clothes. As he struggled against his bonds the second strawberry finally slid down to join the first, leaving a trail of white whipped cream across his skin.

Kagome's eyes followed the descent of the fruit before they went a little more south and jumped up to his face. A dark blush covered her cheeks.

"Um... Hi, Inuyasha...?"

Chapter Text

Kagome covered her mouth with a hand when she looked at the scene in front of her. Inuyasha was laying on his back under the Sacred Tree, catching his breath after his fight with Kouga and his pack, the said wolves were panting, slumped to the ground nearby. The white-clad she-wolf was the only one standing. She shook her head, red ponytails swaying around her face when she looked at the males and then at the miko standing next to the Sacred Tree.

Ayame gave a friendly smile to the human female standing beside the old tree. She didn't act scared or angry, in Ayame's opinion she was probably the more friendly and polite of the miko-hanyou duo. A playful glint appeared in her eye when she looked down at the white-haired dog. He had stood his ground against a whole pack of full-blooded youkai, but he had been only focused on protecting the miko and his domain from the stupid prince of the wolf tribe. The she-wolf was sure that only the miko's subduing kept him from killing the stupid males. Ayame shook her head and decided to try and restore the friendly atmosphere she had had with the miko before. And what the better way to restore good relationship between females than to give a younger one a lesson about taming her male?

So the she-wolf walked closer to the hanyou. her body language indicating she wasn't a threat. Inuyasha tried to stand up, but the beads were still keeping him to the ground. He growled at her, but she ignored his warning for now.

"You can't subdue your male like this, silly human," she said. Inuyasha's eyes widened in terror as she knelt beside him. He tried to move away but couldn't do it. "In order to do it, to control him, you need to grab his most sensitive part..."

Kouga whined from his spot sprawled out on the ground under a broken bush. "Oh, lady Ayame, why are you not grabbing my sensitive parts?" No one listened to the prince, focused on the she-wolf.

Kagome could only stare in bewilderment as the she-wolf lifted her hand, her gaze never leaving Inuyasha's face. She had not felt any vile intentions from Ayame, since their meeting she had been a friendly person.

"...And squeeze it really, really hard," Ayame finished playfully as her hand reached the said part of the hanyou's body and grasped it firmly. Inuyasha yipped and squeezed his eyes shut.

"Kagome...!"

The miko flinched at the whine of pain and desperation from the hanyou. Never had she heard his voice so full of anguish. She sprang to action before the sound of her name echoed through the air, she was on her way to save, to protect her forest spirit, her beloved friend.

As Kagome approached them she stopped, staring at the she-wolf's hand. Ayame giggled and let go of Inuyasha's ear after tweaking it one last time.

"Only then you can make a male submit to you, when you know what his weak spot is."

Inuyasha, finally free to move, jumped to his feet, growling at her, but Kagome laid a hand on his shoulder in a calming gesture. He glared, but said nothing.

"I'll remember this," she assured the she-wolf. "And since Inuyasha will behave from now on, what will we do with Kouga and his pack?"
"I guess I can help you chase them away from your territory, as a sign of friendship between my tribe and you," Ayame shrugged.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha walked in his hut with two rabbits which were going to be the dinner. To his surprise he saw no Kagome in the main room. He sniffed and found her scent leading to Shippou's room. The curious hanyou dropped the rabbits in the kitchen area and walked towards the said chamber.

Shippou was often away for weeks, taking kitsune tests and wandering the world, but he was always coming back. He was a pretty handsome teen now, sporting two tails and pranking people here and there. But some things about him never changed - one being that he had a total mess in his room. Usually after his visit home there was a pile of clothes, notebooks, acorns and dry leaves in one corner of his room. For some reason Kagome always bothered to put all of that into place for the kid when he was gone.

Inuyasha stopped in the doorway and found Kagome sitting on the floor, holding one of Shippou's many sketchbooks. As soon as the miko saw her husband she looked up from the page she was reading.

"You know, I think that Shippou took a lot after Miroku," she said and handed him the sketchbook.

On top of the page was a small drawing of a girl's face. Beside it was her name and village where she lived, along with some info about her and her family. At the end was written a date of when Shippou had met her the last time The hanyou turned the page, then another one.

All were similar, some girls were human, some youkai. When he closed the notebook he saw the word WINTER written on it. It was spring. When the puzzled man looked at his wife she handed him the SPRING notebook, bookmarks sticking out of it.

"Feh,"

"Feh? That's all you have to say?" Kagome raised her eyebrows. "Our son has so many female friends he can't keep track of them."

"Yeah. It's not like he wasn't flirting with girls during the jewel shards hunt," the hanyou shrugged. "Come, woman, we have dinner to cook. You can talk to him about this when he comes home."

"Oh, no, mister! You're going to talk with him about this!"

"Uh..."

Chapter Text

A villager was sitting in front of a hut, repairing a basket. He was peacefully doing his job when he saw a traveler stumble along the road. The man stood up and walked to the stranger

"Are you alright?" he asked. The stranger looked up, his face pale and his eyes tired, dark bags under them. He swayed as he walked, obviously tired.

"Is this the village of the youkai slayers?" he rasped out. The villager quickly grabbed him under his arm to prevent him from falling.

"Oh, if you mean the great gang of youkai slayers, the answer is yes. But the rest of us are just ordinary farmers and traders," he said. "Do you want me to lead you to them?"

The stranger just nodded and the villager led him to lady Kaede's hut. When he made sure the stranger was talking to the old miko and the team of the slayers he walked back home and finished his work.

An hour later Kaede brought the messenger back to the villager and asked the man to keep him for the night so he could rest before his journey back to his village. The man nodded, pleased to have some company. The two men ate supper together and then sat with cups of sake to look at the darkening sky. The villager's name was Yohi while the traveler was called Hiro.

"So," Yohi asked. "How many went?"

"How many went?" asked the asked man in confusion. "What do you mean?"

"The group of our slayers adjusts the size of the party going to do an extermination judging by the information they have. So - for example, sometimes only the lady Sango and Inuyasha go, other times Shippou the kitsune and the monk Miroku... You know, we in our village often bet what they're going to face based on the members of the sent party. So, how many?"

"Let's see..."Hiro took a sip of his sake. "There was the lady youkai slayer and the young miko and the hanyou."

Yohi whistled. "Oh, pretty tough, the miko Kagome and Inuyasha are the strongest of them all and if they take lady Sango it means that there will be a lot of damage to your village or fields."

"Is she so destructive?" Hiro asked in surprise, the woman didn't look like a very violent one.

"No, Inuyasha will go overboard when he knows lady Kagome and lady Sango have each other's back." Yohi laughed and waved a hand. "But you should be thankful monk Miroku no longer has the power of the wind tunnel in his hand. I've heard once he sucked in half of the crops while catching a group of rouge kappa." One thing was sure - Yohi was really fond of the famous slayers living in his village.

"Oh gods..."

"Inuyasha has great power. His sword can tear through the ground or produce adamant shards as long as you're tall in great quantities. Lady Sango's boomerang can do a lot of damage, but she can only put holes through buildings and roofs, not make them evaporate. Lady Kagome's arrows are very dangerous to youkai of all kind, but they also an explode and destroy stuff at times, since she puts a lot of reiki in them," Yohi proudly elaborated on the subject, missing the sudden paleness of his friend's face and his shaking hand.

"Oh, gods, I've sent them to my village," Hiro whispered in terror. Suddenly being plagued by a few mischievous monkey youkai didn't sound that bad.

Chapter Text

This was the last day Kagome wore her school uniform in the past, but no one knew it yet.

The gang was walking down a path running by a stream. Kirara and Shippou were waiting in the camp while the rest was looking for the missing contents of their laundry line.

The previous night the team had stopped for camp near the stream and they had did some laundry, washing their dirty clothes and hanging them to dry. Some pieces, hanging on lower bushes had stayed there, but all the robes on the makeshift line had blown away on a strong wind during the night. The team was walking in a wide spread line, trying to spot various pieces of clothing - here was a kimono top, there a green skirt, a sock or a long strip of fabric labeled by Miroku as his 'treasure wrap'.

Inuyasha, who was a strong believer in two in one washing philosophy, had washed his robes while bathing and then had dried himself in a doggie manner. Now he was walking a little behind the rest, watching them looking frantically for missing parts of clothes. It was kinda like a shard hunt, only everyone was able to see the colorful pieces of fabric. Sango found another of Miroku's treasure wraps and threw it at the monk with a dark blush. Kagome commented it with a giggle from behind a bush where she was standing.

Some more time passed and all that was missing was only one of Kagome's uniforms - two white socks, a skirt and a blouse. Inuyasha was slowly getting annoyed at the delay, because no matter how far they were walking there was no sign of the uniform. It was odd - most pieces they had found pretty near to the camp. The rest didn't want to stop looking for the missing items, Kagome wanted to get her uniform back and Inuyasha didn't really try to stop them - it wasn't worth being sat.

Suddenly the hanyou's ears twitched and he stopped.

"I think it's enough," he said, causing the rest to look at him. "Let's go back."

"We must find my uniform first," Kagome pointed out. She had three uniforms - one on her person, one missing and one in her backpack, she wasn't going to leave one behind. The uniforms weren't cheap and all three were new ones, replacing destroyed ones. "You could help and sniff it out or something." Inuyasha shrugged.

"It's just ahead, but if you go for it you'll regret it," he warned her. Now curiosity twinkled in everyone's eyes.

"If it is so close why we shouldn't go?" asked a puzzled Miroku.

"Is there an evil youkai nearby?" worried Sango. Inuyasha shrugged again, indicating there was no dangerous beasts around.

"Alright, you can stay here and wait for us," Kagome decided. "I need my uniform back. Sango, Miroku, are you coming?"

"Yeah!" the pair walked after Kagome. Inuyasha's ears twitched again, but the hanyou remained rooted to the ground.

Five minutes later a very blushing miko ran past him, followed by a youkai slayer with her hands pressed to her cheeks. Inuyasha waited a few more minutes before Miroku came from behind the bushes, a silly grin on his face and stars in his eyes.

"Inuyasha, my friend!" he greeted the hanyou. "You know, I have an idea what to give Sango for her birthday next week!"

"Huh? What?" Inuyasha turned on his heels and started to walk back to the camp, following the long gone girls. Miroku was walking beside him.

"A school uniform!" he declared happily.

Somewhere beyond the bushes Ayame was really glad she had collected Kagome's uniform. Quickly it had became clear Kouga didn't mind if the person wearing it wasn't the miko, but the she-wolf... Actually, it looked like he preferred it this way... She thought that she should soon find a way to replace it, judging by Kouga's excitement the garment wasn't going to last long.

Chapter Text

He was in the process of waking up. His mind was slowly drifting up the sea of warmth and unawareness, from the depth of his dreams to the reality. His senses were slowly awakening, feeding him more information about his surroundings with every second. He was lazily interpretating the information.

There was something amazing about the fact that he could wake up like this. Not jumping to his feet with a start, not waking up from a nightmare. He really liked to wake up this way. He was relaxed and so at peace.

So, he was on his back, on a soft futon. The air in the room was fresh and crisp - probably the window was open. He could hear birds singing outside. Something heavy was on his chest and the knowledge it wasn't normal was what made him finally wake up. He didn't feel threatened by the weight. Actually,,, It felt nice.

But... Was it purring?

He opened his eyes and looked at his chest, ready to solve the mystery of the purring, soft and warm weight.

"Purr, purr," said the weight with a wide smile and playfully kissed the tip of his nose. Then she laid her head back on his chest and wrapped her limbs tighter around the male she was laying on top of. She purred happily and he smiled like a happy idiot, brushing her dark hair and bare back. His hand strayed south and claimed the firm roundness of her bottom. There was no slap to his face, no shriek of annoyed surprise. The woman just purred and relaxed against his form. Carefully he moved his other hand and placed it on her waist, pulling her even closer. Was there something better to wake up blanketed by a stunning, naked young woman who is your wife?

"You know," she whispered and turned her eyes on him again. "The kids will be at Kagome and Inuyasha's for another couple of hours." He saw the mischievous twinkle in her eyes.

"Purr, purr," he replied.

Waking up was nice, yes, but being awake was even nicer.

Chapter Text

The boy, who was a dog - or was it a dog who was also a boy? - had been in his domain what a storm was to a field of flowers. The boy-dog had been his enemy.He had tried to steal what was his, he had destroyed the comfy harmony of his domain, had disturbed its peace more than once. He had tried to get rid of the dog-boy, had scathed him, had tried to trip him over his huge body. But the boy-dog was too agile and too cunning and he had to admit his defeat.

Since the day of the truce between him and the boy-dog things were... Easier, calmer. The boy didn't shout so much, didn't pull his tail. Slowly... Slowly he became a part of his domain. He didn't have to hide every time the dog-boy was waiting for the young female to come back from school. He actually had a chance to learn more about the dog-boy and learn that the boy-dog had another feline friend - a female who spent a lot of time sleeping on top of the young male.

Buyo climbed on top of a dozing off hanyou and after pawing his chest for a minute curled in a ball, purring. One yellow eye opened and a strong had came up to scratch the cat's ear. The cat purred louder.

"Keh."

Dogs - and boys - weren't that bad.

Chapter Text

It all started at the first night of the month, in a camp made by two wolf tribes in a small forest. There was some sake, some raw meat to share between friends. Rumors were passed between allies. But the strongest wolves were sitting around the fire, where their alphas were talking over cups of the finest sake.

"Eh," Kouga sighed. "I envy you, your mate is a perfect example of an alpha female," he said to his companion and gave a small nod in the direction of the female wolf youkai who gave him a small smile before returning to eating her deer's heart.

"Weren't you engaged to Ayame?" she asked. after swallowing a bite. Kouga shrugged.

"I fell in love."

"I'm guessing not with Ayame?" inquired the other wolf leader. The wolves gathered around the fire looked curiously at the younger alpha. Kouga nodded.

"My beloved has hair as dark as a raven's wing, eyes big and brown like those of a roe deer, but with fire and fierceness of a bear. My beloved wields immense strength and weapon unlike any other. There's only one downfall to my lovely one - my beloved is a human."

"That's odd, but I guess there are more redeeming qualities than only beauty and strength." the older alpha male tilted his head. It was rare for a youkai to grow fond of a human. Kouga smiled dreamily.

"Oh yes, there's a lot. Strong will, loyalty, courage, smarts... Kindness..."

"So if your beloved is so amazing why aren't you mates?" the alpha female finished her meal and licked the blood off her fingers.

"Oh, my beloved is so loyal and kind, the love of my heart travels with a bunch of humans, a lowly half-breed and some weak youkai," Kouga shrugged. "They're on a quest and I had no heart to destroy their team. Without my beloved they are destined to fail. Besides, it's more fun to visit my love and see how the half-breed dog shit gets angry and then eats dirt because my beloved can make him kiss the ground with one word. Besides, the gang would probably defend my love with all their might, and I'm not in a mood for killing them, they are handy sometimes."

No one noticed two young wolves leaving the camp. They
looked at each other and disappeared in the moonless night.

.

It was almost dawn and only the guards were still up, the two packs were asleep. Kouga was one of the warriors protecting the sleeping lot, sitting on a hilltop and looking at the wide field outside of the forest. Suddenly he stood up because he saw a couple of wolves running his way, carrying a big bag between themselves.

"What's up?" Kouga called to them when they approached, panting. They put the bag in front of him.

"We brought you a gift, Kouga!" one said happily. "We brought you what you desire the most!"

"Yeah! So if you are pleased with us you let us be your betas!" added the other and undid the tie on the bag.

"Huh?" Kouga looked down at the bag, pretty curious. It was not often he was getting gifts. And certainly not this big. The proud pair tugged the hem of the bag open and wide so it could slid to the ground, revealing the present.

"Your intended!"

"Flowing black hair!"

"And brown, fiery eyes!"

"And was fighting like hell!"

"And the whole gang tried to stop us, but we were faster, they are on our tail, so it'd be better to perform the mating ritual fast-" the pair spoke excitedly, talking almost at the same time. Kouga looked down, straight in fierce brown eyes.

And paled.

The sunlight washed over the hilltop.

"Wolf shit..." growled someone from the height of Kouga's knees, cracking their knuckles. "Give me one good reason not to Wind Scar your lousy pack out of the existence. Do it fast."

.

Far away, on the other side of the field, Kirara was flying as fast as she could, following the wolves' trail. Suddenly she and her riders all tensed, sensing an immense wave of youki rolling over them.

"I guess the dog is out of the bag," said Miroku in a contemplative tone. The ground shook when a burst of yellow light appeared in the direction they were headed to. "And kicking."

"Does it mean we can slow down?" Sango asked, concerned for Kirara, who wasn't used to carry three adult humans for long distances.

"Better speed up," Kagome shook her head and pointed to something that looked like a cloud of diamond splinters glistering in the sunlight. "I don't know I have enough bandages."

Chapter Text

It was a lovely spring day, the gang was walking back to their village. They were returning from a long trip and everyone was looking forward to a few days of rest. Even Inuyasha was in a good mood, despite the fact everyone was pretty tired. They were walking down a wide path, watching the gentle hills and forests as they walked. It seemed nothing could disturb the serenity of the land.

Until suddenly a gust of wind brought a familiar scent to Inuyasha's nose. The hanyou growled and the next second found himself pushed out of his spot beside Kagome and in a nearby bush.

"Hi, Kagome! How is my woman?" inquired Kouga, pushing a bunch of wild flowers in Kagome's hand.

"Uh, Kouga, hi," the miko sighed and looked away from his intense eyes, thinking regretfully that Kouga had to come by when Inuyasha had been in a good mood and holding her hand the whole morning. Why all canines had to be dense? One she loved and he had hard time comprehending it, the other she just liked as a friend and he was not seeing it, no matter how she tried to show him she was not interested. Maybe she should just kiss Inuyasha so they both could get the message through their thick skulls?

"And we had so nice atmosphere," sighed Sango and helped Inuyasha untangle a stubborn branch from his mane.

"I guess it won't take long for the drama to unfold," Shippou voiced his opinion quietly.

"Feh," Inuyasha replied and walked over to where Kagome freed her hand from Kouga's grip and anxiously stepped a little away. Inuyasha eyed the flowers with displeasure.

"You gave your offering, now get lost, bastard," he said and stood beside the miko, who frowned in confusion, because the hanyou's words sounded rather calm for him. Normally he'd stand between her and Kouga, shouting and throwing a tantrum. Now he was simply standing there, glaring angrily, but nothing more.

"Shut up, I'm talking to my woman," Kouga growled at him.

"She ain't your woman." Inuyasha was about to cross his hands in his sleeves in his arrogant pose, but suddenly found himself unable to do it.

"Inu-kun!" a girl practically materialized in his embrace out of the thin air. Kagome growled inwardly when Inuyasha didn't push her away, but just stood there. Then she realized she knew the girl who dared to jump in her hanyou's arms.

"Uh, Ayame..." Inuyasha tried and failed to untangle the she-wolf's arms from around his neck. The woman giggled and hugged him before letting go of him and smiling at the rest of the gang, ignoring Kouga. "Hi, guys! I was looking for you lot! You were supposed to be home by now, right?"

"Hello, lady Ayame," Miroku bowed lightly. "We were taking our time, the land is so lovely... But not as lovely as you, may I add." he dared to glance to his side to see Sango pouting.

"Hello, Ayame," Shippou said from Miroku's shoulder. The kitsune smiled at the female canine youkai who flashed him a fangy grin while waving a finger at the monk playfully.

"So now you got so jealous of Kagome that you decided to pretend to settle down on the half-breed in an attempt to make me jealous?" asked Kouga and raised an eyebrow. Kagome glanced at the girl who started to giggle. "I'm not impressed, Ayame."

"Oh, no, Inu-kun is all Kagome-chan's!" she said, causing the pair to blush and try to say something to deny it. Ayame just shook her head, ignoring also Kouga's claim that Kagome was his. She didn't look upset over this, rather amused by the blushing pair. "It's bad to lie to your older sister, you know."

"Sister?!" exclaimed the whole group, minus Inuyasha, who only grumbled and scowled.

"He didn't tell you, huh?" Ayame looked at the shocked humans and grinned. "The last full moon I received a marriage proposal from the Lord of the West," she explained.

"From Sesshomaru?" Sango wanted to make sure she heard right. Ayame gave a nod.

"And of course I agreed. So now I'm Inu-kun's older sister-in-law-to-be. We'll be a big happy family!" she grabbed Kagome's hands. "I forgave you long ago for unintentionally making Kouga fall for you, little sister. This way I'm finally going to be happy and appreciated!" she grinned. "My fiancee is strong, handsome, virile and honorable, like all the inu youkai! And it's such a good arrangement, too!"

"Oh... I... That's nice," Kagome managed an awkward smile.

"Hey!" Kouga growled. "You're marrying the mutt's brother?"

"Yes," Ayame said. "It's not of your concern, Kouga. You yourself canceled out engagement. You are no longer in power to rule over the wolf youkai with me, someone better will take this place."

"But..." the wolf looked at them all, Kagome standing close to Inuyasha, who was observing him with a pretty smug expression on his face. "I'm the wolf prince..."

"No," Ayame suddenly growled at him, all her amusement and playfulness changing into cold fierceness. She turned to glare at him. "You're the alpha of one pack, one tribe. I, on the other hand, am the princess of all wolf youkai, I won't let a mere lordling treat me like I'm less than dirt while I'm outranking him. I am of royal blood and you hold no power over me. Actually it is me who has the power over you, tribe leader. Watch your tongue, because I won't ignore any insult to family of my fiancee."

"And she's going to breed royal pups for the West," added Inuyasha, a wicked grin on his face. "I think the inu line is pretty safe, you'll give birth to fierce, strong pups... Older sister."

"If you get started soon, Inu-kun, you can bring some of your own before I and Fluffy Tail do," Ayame grinned and winked at Kagome, who blushed and hid her face in her hands. "I think the hanyou line of the family will be pretty strong too."

"Feh!"

"I see that congratulations are in order, lady Ayame," said Miroku. "We are happy that you're engaged and I'll pray for your and your future spouse's happiness."

"Oh, yes, congratulations, Ayame," Sango and Shippou nodded. Kagome peeked through her fingers. Inuyasha was still standing beside her, grinning at Kouga, who was just staring at the she-wolf accepting congratulations. He looked like hit by a lightning.

"You knew?" she asked quietly.

"Of course I knew," he shrugged. "The flea told me." The next second Ayame walked between them.

"Okay, come, let me walk you back home," she said and linked her arm with Kagome's. "We have stuff to talk about, little sister."

Inuyasha shrugged and walked after his miko being dragged down the road by a she-wolf. Miroku and Sango followed without a word. Soon, only Kouga was standing on the road, staring at nothing. Suddenly he shook visibly and looked after the group. He quickly picked up the bunch of flowers forgotten by Kagome.

"Ayame, wait!" he called, running after them.

Chapter Text

The gang was still more than a little shaken. Ayame was walking between them, smiling and talking, teasing Inuyasha or telling fun stories from her tribe's daily life. Some time after they left Kouga on the road a bunch of white, sleek wolves appeared nearby, following their mistress. They approached the gang with wagging tails and perked ears, and were more than friendly. Soon Shippou was riding on one's back. Miroku and Sango just shared puzzled looks with Kagome, who was walking a little in front of them.

"I must say it was unexpected," Sango said after a few minutes. Ayame smiled at her.

"I know! I never thought I'd be mated to the Lord of the West himself," she grinned. Sango offered a warm, a little shy smile. Ayame was a friend, but they had not spent much time together, so she felt a little awkward in her company.

"It is most fortunate turn of events." Miroku voiced his opinion. "So now the wolf and dog youkai are allies, right?"

This time it was Inuyasha who answered.

"Yeah, but there still can be personal grudges," the hanyou shrugged. Ayame patted his shoulder.

"Don't worry, I'm sure Kouga is too weak to actually take your intended away from you, Inu-kun," she cooed and winked at Kagome, who blushed.

"Yeah, unless she sits me," he mumbled.

"Hey! I don't say osuwari every time Kouga is around!" Kagome exclaimed. The next second she was kneeling beside the fallen hanyou. "Sorry!"

"Wait, Ayame!" came Kouga's voice on the wind and suddenly the wolf youkai was in front of the red-head.

"See? There's Kouga, here's a sit," Inuyasha glared at the giggling she-wolf and sheepish miko. Miroku and Sango stepped to the side, where Ayame's wolves were, just to make sure Kouga wouldn't run them over in his haste.

"It's not like seeing Inuyasha get sat isn't funny," said Shippou. "But when she does it unintentionally it means she will not bring any pocky next time she goes home, just ramen."

"Keh!" Inuyasha glanced at Kagome who sighed and gave a nod, accepting her fate. That meant she was going to have two trips to the ship to collect all the ramen she could carry. Or - an idea came to her mind - she could ask Inuyasha to go shopping with her. A wide smile appeared on her lips when she thought about visiting a huge shop with him again. The last time he had bent to her hand like it was a lifeline. Inuyasha eyed her expression and decided to stay on the ground for a minute longer, just to make sure she wasn't about to sit him again.

Meanwhile Sango and Miroku were entertained by Kouga standing in front of Ayame with the same flowers he had given Kagome earlier.

"I thought that I told you already I'm no longer interested in you," the she-wolf crossed her arms in front of her chest.

"Listen, Ayame, you said you're going to marry me when you were a kid, you were always so adamant about it. What happened? Why did you decide to let go of this? You were always blabbering about a moon and a rainbow or something... And about a promise... I did't take you for one to pursue something for decades and then just drop your pursuit because a mutt wagged his tail at you," he fell silent because Ayame put her hands on her hips and shook her head slowly. "Come on, how a mere dog can give you better pups that a superior wolf youkai?"

"Kouga, Kouga, Kouga, what am I supposed to do with you?"

"Huh?" he stumbled over his words and fell silent.

"You know, I should thank you for being such an idiot. If you weren't I'd be already mated to you," she said.

"You want to tarnish your wolf blood with some dog." Kouga accused, pointing a finger at her. "You're supposed..."

Suddenly Inuyasha's ears twitched and he looked away from the wolf couple. Then he nudged Kagome's knee to make her look away too. Kagome gasped and covered her mouth with a hand.

"Little brother, this one hopes you aren't sat because you tried and failed to maim the wolf," said Sesshomaru, who was patiently standing on the road. Rin and Jaken were on his both sides. The little girl waved a hand happily at the whole group while the kappa glared, but for once remained silent.

"Feh, of course not, older brother," Inuyasha finally rose and helped Kagome up before stuffing his hands in his sleeves.

"Fluffy Tail!" Ayame exclaimed happily and ran to Sesshomaru's side. "And Rin, hello, little sparrow!"

"Good day, aunt Ayame," Rin said with a shy, but genuine smile. She wasn't afraid of the red-head, nor her wolves. After all those were Ayame's and Ayame was a good youkai, not eating humans.

"This one wants to know what's the reason for the delay. You and the pack of my little brother were supposed to be in his village hours ago," Sesshomaru stated, not showing any emotion.

"I travel as fast as I want!" Inuyasha growled. Miroku and Sango exchanged relieved smiles, at least some things in the world were still the same. Shippou jumped to Kagome's shoulder.

"Oh, Kouga got in the way," Ayame waved a hand in direction of the wolf who was glaring at the white-clad inu youkai.

"Should this one put this male in his place for you, my palace of sunshine?" asked Sesshomaru with a straight face. The audience almost fell over. Ayame waved a hand

"Oh, no, there's no need for this," she wrapped an arm around the daiyoukai's waist and rubbed her face against his fluff.

"Because this one would enjoy beating the lowling who continues to insult this one's family," Sesshomaru's eyes were glued to Kouga's red face. "And you, my pearl of beauty." For some reason a couple of people started coughing.

"Get in line, I'm first to kick his ass!" Inuyasha was probably the only one who didn't are about Sesshomaru's choice of pet names.

"You!" Kouga growled, ignoring Inuyasha's declaration. He stalked to the daiyoukai. Rin gasped and ran away, dragging Jaken to the place where Inuyasha and his gang stood, suspecting that a fight was going to happen. "Keep your dirty paws off of my woman!"

"This one was under the impression the miko was your woman," Sesshomaru said calmly.

"Oi! She ain't his woman!" Inuyasha was about to jump at the two youkai, but Kagome stopped him.

"Uh,,," Kouga glanced to Kagome who was resting her hands on Inuyasha's chest and pushing him back while whispering something. "Well, yeah, but she's a human and will be gone in a few decades. Then I'm going to marry Ayame and..."

"Were you not planning to mate the miko?" Sesshomaru raised a brow. Miroku raised a brow, hoping to get an explanation from Inuyasha, but the hanyou was busy growling at Kouga and holding the puzzled Kagome in his embrace.

"Mated youkai bind themselves to their partner," Sango noticed Miroku's look and decided to enlighten him. "So, when they mate humans, the human can live as long as they do. It's rare, but some youkai mate humans."

"Uh, yeah..." Kouga glared at Sesshomaru again, ignoring Inuyasha calling him a bastard. "Listen, mutt!That's not your business what I do with my..."

It took only one blink of an eye and Kouga was flying. He soared a few meters before hitting the ground and plowing a shallow tear in it. He jumped up and launched an attack at the daiyoukai who calmly left Ayame's embrace and stepped forward.

"Little brother."

"Yeah?" Inuyasha grumbled, unhappy that he was denied the chance to kick Kouga's sorry ass.

"This one shall not kill the wolf, so you can dispatch of him whenever you wish. Taking the life of a weak youkai is below this one," Sesshomaru whipped Kouga across his chest with his mokomoko, sending him flying again.

"Gee, thanks."

"This one requests of you to take Rin to the village and look after her until he returns to discuss some things with you. Ayame, my treasured ruby, do you want to stay and witness this or go with them?" While talking the daiyoukai was gracefully sidestepping Kouga's punches and kicks. Kouga was growling curses, but it seemed Sesshomaru wasn't interested in hearing them.

"Feh, whatever. Climb up, kid," Inuyasha knelt before Rin, encouraging her to get on his back.

"Hey, this is my spot!" Kagome stole a worried glance at the irate wolf youkai still trying to land a punch on the daiyoukai before playfully tugging at Inuyasha's ear.

"Oh, I'm sure Inu-kun can carry you both," Ayame giggled and also looked at the fighting pair. "Nah, I think it will be more fun to tease your brother, Sesshomaru."

"I see, lady Ayame, we value the same little joys in life," Miroku grinned and dodged a pebble thrown by Inuyasha. "Shall we resume our journey? The village is near and I'm sure lady Kaede has a wonderful stew ready for weary travelers."

"Yeah, stew!" Shippou smiled happily.

"I agree with you for once, monk," Sango shook her head at her friends' antics and the whole group walked away. Sesshomaru glanced at them disappearing behind a road bent and then gave Kouga a wicked smile, one of those that make nations sob in fright.

"Now, Kouga," he said. "This one shall put you in your place and teach you a few lessons about treating others with kindness they deserve."

"You talk, big, filthy dog, but you're as weak as the half-breed!"

"This one shall enjoy this..." Sesshomaru murmured to himself. "So, so much."

Chapter Text

The Old Lady Who Overcame Time And The Gramps Who Was Just Overcame

Kaede sighed as she looked down the Well. The gang was out of the village and she didn't know when they'd be back. And there was a jewel shard. She had came here, following her senses and now she was looking inside the well, frowning.

The shard was down there. And she couldn't send anyone to fetch it. The possibility of leaving it there until the gang was back did't even cross her mind - it was lucky enough no youkai bones weren't revived yet.

She gave a firm mod, adjusting her bow and then reaching for the rope ladder Kagome was using while climbing back to the past. She carefully positioned herself on the ladder, ignoring the protests of her bones and muscles. It was her duty to protect the village and the shard in the well was practically begging for trouble.

Climbing down the rope ladder wasn't easy, she wasn't as agile as she had once been. Thinking about herbal ointments she was going to use later she was slowly descending in the shadowy depths of the well. She prayed to the gods for the ladder to hold her weight, she wasn't exactly as thin as Kagome. Then she thought about the girl's backpack, with it Kagome sure weighted more than Kaede.

Finally she reached the bottom and sighed in relief. She made it safely. She looked around and spotted the shard just laying on the ground, so she bent down to pick it up. As soon as her fingers brushed the shard blue light filled the well, blinding her for a minute. The miko froze, but nothing more happened, so she put the shard in her robe and climbed up the rope ladder. It passed her mind that it seemed to be on a wrong wall, but she thought she just was confused after the burst of light.

It wasn't until she climbed out of the well that she realized she was no longer in the familiar Forest of Inuyasha. She found herself looking at old-looking wooden walls of a well-house. She had a suspicion she knew where - or rather when - she was.

Slowly the old miko climbed up the stairs and slid open the door to look outside.

A yard with an odd-looking house, a few buildings encircling it. The Sacred Tree was casting its shadow upon the property, a few other trees here and there. But there was no forest, no scent of wild flowers. There was no one in sight, so Kaede decided to go for a short stroll - after all such a chance wouldn't happen again. She looked at the city spread out to the horizon, wrapped around the hill where the shrine was located. It was so... Stunning. She had never thought a city could be so huge, many buildings taller than trees. She could hear the faint sounds of the city, but couldn't recognize most of them.

Finally she came to stand under the Sacred Tree and saw that she wasn't alone in the area.

There was a man sleeping with his back against the wide tree.

He wore old-looking clothes and had silver hair tied up in a simple, but flattering hair style. He had a strong jaw, his cheek bones pronouncing his strong will, his brows shadowing his closed eyes, his mouth curled in a small smile. His whole body radiated serene peacefulness and confidence.

"Are these..." she tentatively stepped closer, her eye landing on something. "...Really...?"

Kaede knelt down slowly and outstretched her hands to brush her fingers against...

"Huh?" she tensed and looked in the man's face.

His eyes were beautiful, wise and full of surprise. There was much resemblance to Kagome in his face, now she could easily see that he was related to her in some way.

"Oh," she pilled her hands away from the items he was holding in his hands. For some reason she felt like a teenager caught while stealing sweets. "I didn't mean to wake ye up," she gave him an apologetic smile.

His eyes, which had seen so much, but still were able to hold innocent wonder, blinked a few times.

"Are you a goddess?" he uttered after a second. "You must be I can feel your immense power. It's so soothing and refreshing."

"Nay, I'm merely a village miko," Kaede was amused by his words and relieved he wasn't annoyed. "I'm called Kaede. I came through the well by an accident and..." her gaze traveled to the items in his hands. "I purchased those bells for the shrine the previous spring. It's..."

"Ah, you're from that Inuyasha's time!" the man exclaimed and then examined the bells. His eyes lit up. "You bought these? Oh, that's so wonderful to know they are so ancient!"

"I'm just glad they stay in the shrine, they were pretty pricey," Kaede chuckled. The man gave her a wide, excited grin, his wrinkles making him look like an apple after winter.

"It's one of many precious treasures of the shrine, kept by my family for generations!" he exclaimed.

.

When a few hours later Mrs. Higurashi went to fetch her father for the dinner she found the old shrine keeper looking at the Sacred Tree with a dazed smile.

"Father? Is everything alright?" she asked.

"Oh, dear daughter, I had the most wonderful visitor today," he said with a dreamy smile.

Chapter Text

Was there something more serene than cherry blooms swaying on a gentle spring breeze? Bankotsu was sitting under a tree, his famous Banryū resting against its trunk.

The young man was looking up, to the branches of the tree,admiring the soft petals swirling and dancing on the wind, falling to the ground with gentle grace.

He was meditating, just like Renkotsu had told him to do. He was supposed to meditate until creating a perfect haiku for this day. He felt like creating a poem right now, but all words he could come up with were not coming together well. He sighed and threw away the stick with which he had been trying to create a perfect haiku for this evening on the soft ground in front of him.

It wasn't like he was a bad poet - he was a terrible poet, but not many dared to tell that in his face. Some brave ones would also add that he was bad at calligraphy. And he was suffering right now, having a huge headache. The leader of the famous Band of Seven was unable to write because he was constantly distracted by his fellow band member and his date.

The date of his friend was a pretty muscular male, former samurai and current ronin, and future monk Bankotsu wasn't too sure that being a monk was this man's karma, but didn't feel in the mood to tell him that. After all it was his band who made the man a ronin. Ginkotsu had pushed his master off a tall cliff a few days ago.

Totally by a - well planned by Bankotsu and Renkotsu - accident. Totally.

Now the whole band was enjoying the fallen daimyō's palace until their

"Oh, look, Tora-chan, look at that flower!" Jakotsu exclaimed. The man obediently looked.

"I see, Jakotsu-san," he said. Jakotsu smiled and with a fast, but sure movement of his hand sent his blade zig-zagging through the air. The spotted flower, falling to the ground, continued its descent in ribbons. "Oh, gods!"

See? How was Bankotsu to make a perfect poem with them two talking and showing off? They were too distracting, drawing his attention away from the fragile beauty of the fallen lord's garden, from admiring ornamental trees and rocks piled by a gardener in a fascinating structure near a pond with koi fishes.

Bankotsu gave up and turned his head to look at Jakotsu. His friend had his cheeks flushed, an excited smile on his face, cherry petals and their bits adorning his hair and falling around him like rain while he was cutting more and more of them, his sword shining in the sunlight.

And suddenly Bankotsu grabbed his stick, put the tip of his tongue between his lips and started to draw letters.

Soft betals dancing
Sword strikes like snake
The spreng brings changes

.

Renkotsu and Mukotsu looked at the sloppy letters. The rest of the group was gathered around their proud leader, showing them all his perfect haiku.

"Hm," said Mukotsu. "It's something different, that's for sure."

"Should we tell him he misspelled 'spring' and 'petals'?" whispered Kyokotsu as he leaned in to speak right in Ren's ear

"No, I think no," the other mercenary shook his head and turned to face their leader. "I see that you found inspiration in the garden. Did your headache lessened after you finished the poem and meditations?" he inquired.

"Not really. It was really irritating," confessed Bankotsu honestly.

"That's odd. My grandfather always used to say that creating a haiku was the best cure for headaches," Ren looked back to the poem on the ground.

"Okay, Ren's dumb idea didn't work," Jakotsu grabbed their attention by shaking his head and shaking off his head petals. "Now come and get drunk! Nothing cures a headache like a bottle of hot sake!"

"I second that!" exclaimed Suikotsu. The whole band, sans Renkotsu, went inside the palace to drink.

"I don't understand why it didn't work... Maybe it's because of the bad spelling?"

Chapter Text

She was aware that they were drawing attention. She didn't remember drawing attention since the days of her youth when she had been a pretty school girl. Well, she was still pretty, but she sure wasn't a schoolgirl anymore. And no young men were carrying her down a street nowadays.

She fought back her blush when she saw a group of some girls giggling and looking at her. The young man carrying her was grumbling under his breath, probably able to hear what they were whispering to each other. Older people were usually just giving them shocked glances, noticing her wrapped ankle and assuming that the boy with a baseball cap and white hair was just helping the middle-aged lady in her time of need. Still, some were wondering why he didn't call a taxi, but decided to carry her himself and wondered at the oddness of the pair.

"Thank you for helping me," she said and patted the place on his shoulder where her hand was resting. "I wouldn't make it back home with a twisted ankle and all my bags," she said, glancing at her shopping hanging from her elbows and a piece of a string Inuyasha had made into a loop he could hang over his shoulder. The weight of the cargo on his back didn't seem to bother him at all.

"Feh, it's nothing," mumbled the boy she hoped was her future son-in-law.

"Oh, it's not nothing!" she exclaimed as he started to deftly climb up the shrine steps. From what she knew from Kagome's stories he was able to clear the stars in a leap or two, but she was grateful he was not doing that. She was afraid of heights and didn't mind being carried up the steps for once. "I must say now I understand why Kagome ditched her bike."

"Huh?" the boy turned his head to look at her from under his bangs.

"She told me you give her piggy-back rides all the time. Or should I call them doggy-back rides? Anyway that's so sweet of you and so cute," she beamed at the suddenly red-faced boy, who was doing his best not to trip on the stairs. She giggled at his embarrassment and patted him again. "Oh, hush, I will make you some tasty food as a thank you gift."

"Feh!" Inuyasha decided against voicing his opinion about her saying that he was doing anything that was remotely cute or sweet. Better not to make the woman who was willing to feed him angry with him.

Chapter Text

Miroku was walking beside his friend, who was glaring his way. It was not Miroku's fault that the tradition was like this. The groom was supposed to wear an outfit which wasn't his usual fire rat. The hanyou was walking in black and red stripped hakama which weren't tied at his ankles. Five red crescent moons adorned the top of his kimono, blood red obi keeping his attire together and Tessaiga in place. The long sleeves of Inuyasha's kimono hid the spot where an ofuda had been plastered to his hand. Miroku still felt a little guilty for applying the holy paper to his friend's hand, but rendering him motionless was the only way he could strip him off his fire rat and dress him properly. Before that Inuyasha had tried to wear his robe under the wedding kimono. And when Miroku finally had finished his deed he had even combed through the hanyous hair. The experience had been very enlightening and entertaining, because the ofuda had permitted him to speak.

And Miroku had learned that even after knowing Inuyasha for four years there still were curses he had not knew before.

Now, as they were nearing the pavilion where Kaede and some of the villagers were waiting, Inuyasha was quite presentable. He was still walking a little stiffly and glaring at Miroku, but the monk knew he did his best to help his friend at his time of need. He walked with a light step, the rings of his staff twinkling like happy bells.

"Why do you drag the staff around?" asked Inuyasha gruffly, trying to focus his attention on anything but his upcoming marriage. He didn't mind marrying, just being the center of everyone's attention was unsettling.

"Oh, this is just in case."

"In case of what?"

"In case you try to run away," Miroku grinned at the glaring hanyou. "And I have more ofudas up my sleeve, just so you know."

"Feh! I ain't running!" Inuyasha folded his arms and looked nervously at the crowd of the villagers. Miroku just jingled his staff a little more.

He was determined to make sure his friend was happy. After all that was what friends were for.
.

Meanwhile, as Inuyasha and Miroku were entering the pavilion adorned with flowers Sango was leading the bride from Kaede's hut to the same place. Kagome looked wonderful in her white kimono and pretty wig, a simple hood shielding her flushed face from the sunlight and curious glances. Sango was dressed in a fine kimono, but had her slayer's suit under it and her Hiraikotsu was on her back. Kagome eyed the huge weapon.

"Why do you have this?" she asked.

"Oh just to make sure," Sango grinned. "That my sister's wedding goes perfect," both smiled warmly at each other. Soon the pavilion came to view and Sango leaned in to whisper to Kagome. "I asked Kirara to wait behind the nearest shed."

"Huh?" Kagome blinked. The idea of hitting some certain people with Hiraikotsu she understood, but a cat youkai parked behind the shed... not so much.

"You know, if you two don't want to stick around for the reception..." Sango wiggled her brows in a very Miroku way.

"Sango!" Kagome shrieked incredulously and covered her burning cheeks with her long sleeves.

"That's what friends are for, Kagome," Sango grinned. "Come, before Inuyasha loses his patience and spirits you away, married or not."

Chapter Text

Fox Files Pt 2 - The Fox Comes Home

The spring was slowly changing into summer. It was hot, so hot many animals and people were panting and trying to find some shelter from the heat. And from the rain, it was raining all days - short, randomly starting rains falling from the sky to help the rice grow.

It was just after such a short rain, when the sun started to shine again, droplets of water falling from the roofs and trees, that was when Shippou came back home from his long travel. He was an inch or two taller, his eyes held untold wisdom, his body was weary from all his huge battles, his smile was wide and happy. It was his home. It was his home since the day he became the son of Inuyasha and Kagome. He was so glad he was back and couldn't wait to see his adoptive parents. He had so many stories to tell Kagome and so many pranks to pull on Inuyasha!

Shippou walked through the village, smiling left and right at the village girls, tickling little children with his two tails, jumping to fence posts to walk on the tops of the fences. Villagers were greeting him with smiles, but also by shaking their fists at him playfully if he pretended to reach for their horses' manes to tangle them. He even chased a chicken before it took shelter under a cart.

The life of a kitsune was great!

His house came into view - a sturdy hut on the outskirts of the village, close to the forest. He could see his mother hanging laundry on a line spread between two trees. She was so pretty, so kind, so gentle! Shippou smirked - Inuyasha was one lucky dog, literally. Having such a perfect mate was a true blessing. Inuyasha didn't even know how blessed he was. He was a rough, grumpy hanyou who liked to cover his anxiety and insecurity by being loud and rude. But he was strong, fiercely loyal and protective of his pack. And for some reason this goddess of a woman was in love with him.

Shippou ceased his musings about his adoptive parents and shook his head. There were mysteries and wonders in the world, truth he had still to uncover.

He was about to approach her and tell her how happy he was to be home after so long, but his instincts tingled, warning him. He froze, surprised. Inuyasha had taught him to trust his gut and follow his instincts - a lesson which his kitsune education made even more clear. Animal youkai had animal instincts and no sane youkai would question their gut. But... Why was his gut warning him not to approach his adoptive mom, the nicest woman ever?

Oh, she could be angry at Inuyasha or at someone else, but not at him. He didn't do anything wrong... He decided to look for his adoptive dad and see what was going on.

Inuyasha wasn't at his sulking tree. He wasn't at his grumbling tree either. To Shippou's surprise he didn't find him near the Sacred Tree. He sighed in relief when he finally found the hanyou at his I'm-not-sulking-I'm-thinking-how-to-say-stuff-without-putting-my-foot-in-my-mouth tree.

Shippou approached the tree and quickly found his way to the branch on which Inuyasha was reclined. The hanyou opened an eye to acknowledge his presence and the boy sat down near him.

"So..." he started. "I came home."

"So you did," Inuyasha glanced at him, his ears pinned back against his head. "And she's bound to find out sooner or later, so I guess I'll spare us both some annoyed miko's glares and just do what I have to."

"What do you mean?" Shippou tilted his head, taking in the image of an unhappy but determined hanyou.

"Son. We need to talk."

Chapter Text

Kagome walked in the direction of the village. She was carrying her recently stuffed backpack. breathing heavily under its weight. She hadn't expected to carry it herself, she had hoped to have a helper with this task. But Inuyasha was nowhere to be seen. She sighed again and dropped her backpack to the side of the path. She didn't feel like going to Kaede's hut and seeing everyone sitting there and looking at her with pity and sadness.

That is - everyone except Inuyasha.

When she looked up she saw a snake-like youkai fly above her head, heading for a nearby meadow. She bit her bottom lip. She could think and say that she didn't care, that it was their thing, but she still felt bad.

She realized she followed the soul collector when she heard voices from behind a thick veil of bushes, shielding the meadow from all sides. Kagome was about to leave, it wouldn't be good if Inuyasha found her, but Kikyou's soft voice caught her attention.

"Why don't you join me, Inuyasha? I remember the time when you always sat beside me," the undead miko said. Kagome couldn't help but smile when she heard a gruff 'keh!' coming from the direction of a tree on the other end of the meadow. "I guess you don't trust me anymore..."

"Don't have any reason to. Can we cut the pleasantries? My wench's returning today."

Kagome clenched her fists at the name, but then relaxed. She moved a little closer to a thick tree, just to make sure she stayed hidden. So he was planning on coming for her, she was 'his' wench.

"Why do you insist on wandering with my reincarnation? I am perfectly capable of finding the jewel shards and I am sure she'd love to live her life in the time she belongs in."

"She's safer to be around."

"Even with the collar she put around your neck?"

"The collar you made. And yep, even with it. Cuz, ya know, she won't pin me to a tree with a sacred arrow. And she promised to stay here as long as I want to. And I want her to stay, so drop it. We're heading out of the village tomorrow, there's a rumor about a youkai to the East. Miroku says it's probably not Naraku, but it can have a shard. What do you plan to do?"

Kagome heard Kikyou sigh. "I heard the same rumor, but if your group is going there I will head North. Come with me. I am sure your group can handle a youkai, even with a shard."

"Feh! Kagome's going to need my protection, even if it doesn't have a shard," Inuyasha chuckled, causing Kagome to frown. She wasn't that helpless! But even if he made her annoyed it also made her happy he didn't decide to leave her and their friends for Kikyou. "Just... If you find something you can't handle alone, don't try to be brave and take it on alone. We won't take long in the East. We can help you."

"So you care for me? Why, I thought my reincarnation holds your affection," Kagome tensed, Kikyou's voice sounded a little bitter, a little melancholic.

"Listen, Kikyou, you and I... We were in love. We could be together fifty years ago. But we both changed. We don't... Fit anymore. It doesn't mean I don't care for you, cuz we're still friends. Can't anyone here understand that? Now, better go, if they see your soul collectors they'll glare at me for hours."

Kikyou laughed softly and Kagome realized one of her helpers flying in a wide arc around her, heading for its mistress to lift her from the ground with other, which came from the shadows of the trees.

"I am afraid you're too late, Inuyasha, my reincarnation is already here," the undead miko said. "When your friends glare at you for seeing me think about this - I've never glared at you for traveling with them."

"Yeah? You glared plenty much when I told ya I'm not going to become a hum- Wait, what?!" Inuyasha jumped down his branch to grab Kikyou and shake her for answers, but she was already beyond his reach. She just pointed to a thick tree behind his back. When he turned around he saw Kagome standing beside the tree. His ears lowered, preparing for her reaction to his meeting with Kikyou. The future-born miko slowly approached him and grabbed his hand.

"Come, I have a bag full of ramen and it's too heavy for me to carry all the way to the village," she smiled and looked up to meet his yellow eyes glittering with anxiety and surprise.

"...Feh," he muttered, letting her head the way.

Chapter Text

It was a sunny day in the palace above clouds. Lord Sesshomaru was enjoying - in his own way - a peaceful walk in his private garden. His gaze was moving from one bonsai tree to another, then to a huge pond with koi fish and a fragile looking stone bridge connecting two sides of a lovely stream zig zagging between flowerbeds. Carefully selected birds were singing in the branches of magnificent plum and cherry trees.

Suddenly his sensitive ears heard a soft, distant noise of silver bells. He sighed and stood still under one of the plums. It looked like his time of serene peacefulness was coming to an end. It didn't take long for the sound of jingling bells to grow louder.

A flash of violet and silver and suddenly in front of the daiyoukai stood a tall, beautiful woman. She was smiling widely, sparks of joy in her eyes. She had a huge chew toy with some bells attached to it in her hands. A female of so slender, fragile frame, shouldn't be able to hold such a huge object with so much ease.

"Oh, Sesshomaru!" she exclaimed and wrapped her arms around him in a strong hug. "Thank you so much!"

"I see that you found this one's humble gift to his noble mother," he said as calmly as he could. "Does it please you?"

"Oh, dear, it's so much fun!" She giggled and transformed to her true form, carefully placing her paws between the bushes and flowerbeds of his garden. She grabbed the toy and shook her head with vigor. The bells jingled again and Sesshomaru winced.

When the huge white dog jumped out of his garden, leaving his place in silence Sesshomaru sighed.

"Jaken," he said softly.

"My lord!" the small retainer jumped from behind a bonsai tree.

"Remind this one to never again give this one's honorable mother a gift that can make noises," the daiyoukai looked to the calm waters of the koi fish pond. He still could hear his mother playing with her new toy in her own garden. He could already feel the migraine approaching. "And ready Ah-Un, this one will leave shortly,"

"Yes, my lord!"

Chapter Text

It was her second year anniversary. The day marking the end of the second year that the well was sealed. She tried to forget about that, forget how much time had passed since her last travel to the past. Thoughts about her friends from the feudal era were plaguing her mind more often than usual and it was hard to focus on stuff at hand.

Like now - she was hanging the laundry. Every time she saw a certain colored piece of clothing her mind would wander to a person associated with it. A green scarf reminded her of Shippou. Was he taking his kitsune tests? Was he missing her? A purple blouse was instantly connected to Miroku. Was he alright? Did he marry Sango and was a good husband?

"You better be," she mumbled as she shook out Souta's pants before throwing them over the line. The pants were dark red. It wasn't the right shade, but red was red and it was Inuyasha's color. "Inuyasha..."

She smoothed her hand over the rough fabric and lost a minute just remembering the hanyou. Then she resumed her work, her mind drifting to Sango, Kaede and other friends.Yellow was for Sesshomaru, pink was for Rin, gray was for Totosai, blue was for Jinenji - all colors were assigned to certain people, every one of them taking a spot in her heart. This day she was remembering them all, easily finding fond memories and good things they've done. She was more blessed because she knew them, but at the same time she was the most miserable person because she couldn't see them anymore.

She didn't even know if they were still alive.

She bit her bottom lip, forcing herself not to drop the item she had in her hands and run to the well house to check the well. Kagome wiped her eyes when she heard her grandfather calling her name. She hung the last piece and walked to him to see what he wanted.

The old man was standing in front of the Sacred Tree, looking confused. He had been grooming the tree, cutting some dried branches and making sure that all charms hanging from it were secure. When Kagome approached him he smiled at her.

"Ah, Kagome!" he said and grabbed her hand to put something in it. "I found it stuck in a crack in the bark," he said.

Kagome blinked. Why did he call her? What could stuck in the Sacred Tree? The arrowhead had been removed by her long ago... She looked down at the object in her hand.

The world spun around her and then disappeared when her mind focused on the small thing.

"Oh, goodness," she breathed and cradled the object in her palms as if it was a wounded bird. She didn't realize she knelt on the ground, her grandfather lowering himself so he could see her face and make sure she was fine.

"Kagome?" he asked. She lifted to him her teary eyes, but after a second looked back at the golden pendant. It was shaped like a heart, with her name engraved on the lid of the locket. With trembling fingers Kagome opened the locket.

Two pieces of paper were too old, the ink had faded years ago, but Kagome could easily remember what had been on them. Two photos of angry hanyou and miko came to her mind. She choked a sob when she remembered putting this very locket around Inuyasha's neck. She had kissed him not long after giving him this heart... What did this mean? Who had put it in a crack on the Sacred Tree's bark? Was Inuyasha alright? Was it Inuyasha who had engraved her name on it?

There was a small roll of paper which fell out from the space between the photos. Kagome forced herself to control herself before she very carefully unrolled the letter. She prayed it wasn't a letter telling her about her friends' deaths... She looked at the single sentence squeezed in the tiny sized piece of paper. Somehow the ink was much better saved than in the photos. Kagome supposed it was because it was made to last long while the cheap photos were printed with poor quality ink. She sobbed as she wiped her eyes with her sleeve so she could read the note, a blessed letter from five centuries ago, where her heart was.

''I'll wait for you forever.'

Chapter Text

That brat is so lucky. And the worst part is: the idiot doesn't even know about it. Look at him, sitting on that human's shoulder. He barely walks anywhere, everyone carries him around. He gets hugs and other gestures of affection from the females of his group, even the males are fond of him. Oh, the half-breed is often whacking him on the head for his stupidity, but he deserves that. And the half-breed still protects him and provides for him.

That stupid brat just takes this kindness and acceptance as granted, as if it was totally normal. He's just smirking and talking to them as if he is their equal and not a worthless brat.

Every time we meet he's close to the miko, pretending to protect her. In reality it's the half-breed who protects them both - or at least as much as the weak hanyou can.

He doesn't know the pain of loneliness, he doesn't know the hardship of the path I must to follow. I have no one I could snuggle against in my sleep. If I don't hunt I don't eat. Everyone I talk to tries to betray me and use me to gain more power. I have no one to play with - the mere thought of spending time with my siblings makes me shake. They are all fools and weaklings, crawling under Naraku's feet in hope that he would spare them. I despise the pathetic fools.

And I despise the brat. He should suffer. He has no parents, but he's not a homeless, filthy and starving orphan. He's laughing and cracking jokes, tricking everyone around him. How dare he have a childhood when I - much stronger and wiser than he could ever be - am denied the right to enjoy myself, have friends and the comfort of knowing that others would always come to my aid. My siblings would just put a dagger in my back.

I wish I could be him and at the same time I hate all he is and he has. I wish I could make him see how lucky he is, this kitsune brat.

Chapter Text

Just look at that idiot, sitting there! He's so smug, so certain he's above us all. He has flies in his nose, that moron. He thinks he owns everything and is allowed to do whatever only because he's born.

He thinks that he's stronger than me. Well, I'm not a strong fighter yet, but I'm doing my best and will always try to help my friends. I'm sure I'll get my second tail soon, just like Sango says. I bet Kagome will be so happy and even Inuyasha will give me his proud glance and say something about me being as good of a fighter and protector as he is. Praise is not something this stupid brat would ever experience, because all he gets is scolding for failures. Even Inuyasha, this rude and rough hanyou, praises me when I do good.

Inuyasha is a dense idiot when it comes to some stuff, but he's stubborn and dedicated - mostly because he's simple-minded. But simple-minded people are needed in the world too. They simply don't realize that they should give up and they win by the sheer force of their denial.

On who would I test my tricks so I can improve my skills, if not on Inuyasha? Only a total moron would pull a trick on Kirara, Kagome is off-limits, Sango hits worse than Inuyasha and Miroku can be more clueless than a coop of chickens, especially if I transform in a girl.

Everyone knows that transforming in a girl is the most common trick in Kitsune Book of Tricks. It's so obvious I don't even do it anymore around my pack.

But I digress. Just look at that stupid brat of an incarnation. He's looking at me with so much disgust when he sees me riding on my friends' shoulders and yet he's riding on his flaming pony all around the place. He doesn't even fathom that I'm traveling this way because I want to be close to my friends, that I feel secure and not lonely when I cuddle with them. Besides, the said pony does most of the fighting for that idiot and he seems not to notice that he wouldn't stand a chance against us. As I said - an arrogant, clueless, closed-minded brat of an incarnation.

I'm an orphan, just like Inuyasha had once been. I'm just not alone in the world, I'm spared the fate of starvation and fear. Well, unless Inuyasha steals my food and chases me around for getting sat for this. I need affection, I need to be assured my new rag tag family will be there when I wake up. I wake up almost every night after a nightmare of seeing once more my dad being killed. I'm just a child, but I always try to return the love and friendship I get from them, I try to comfort them, to distract them from their sorrows. Even me bothering Inuyasha when he's resting is just a way of me wanting some affection of my adoptive older brother. After all, he's canine like me, and pups tend to tug at their pack mates' tails.

He's blind to the bonds between my pack mates. He won't understand, won't see, that I trust my friends with my life and will do anything for them. He's not wanting to be a part of anything, he just wants to control others like he controls his horse. He doesn't need friends, he needs servants. He doesn't crave love and affection, he craves destruction and suffering of others. He doesn't trust and always plots to gain as much as he can without giving anything in return.

And for that he will always be alone, never hear his adoptive siblings laugh with mirth, tell jokes, share both joys and pains. He will always just look at me with those eyes full of hate and disgust, never understanding how much he's missing.

And - even if I never speak about the fact I know about my treasures, I know I have them. I am greatly blessed by Inari-sama. I have seven treasures.

My first treasure is Kagome, my sweet older sister who loves so easily. My second is Inuyasha, who offers me the companionship only a canine can provide. My third treasure is Sango, who taught me to smile even when you have seemingly nothing to be happy about. The fourth is Kirara, who always gives me her motherly care and asks for nothing in return. The fifth is Miroku, this misunderstood pervert, who teaches me that being mischievous isn't a bad thing. My sixth treasure is Kaede, who heals more than just flesh wounds. My seventh treasure is the knowledge that I'm not alone in the world, that I am allowed to be myself and express myself like a kitsune should, experience the world in all its hues and shades through eyes of a child, despite the loss I've suffered.

Chapter Text

All my friends and some of my foes know how important to me - and inu youkai in general - is the sense of smell. We are akin to dogs in our prowess when it comes to catch, remember, track and appreciate various odors. I can learn so much from one sniff - a person's health, their age, emotions, diet, places they visited recently, their cycle if they're female.

I made a mistake of telling Kagome that I like her scent - you can't blame me, I was sure I was dying, so I thought it'd be nice to be honest for a change. Of course the wench shared this with Sango and the rest of her girl friends from the village during one of their bath-and-talk things (seriously, they take ages just sitting around and blabbering about stuff, but they're much nicer afterwards, so I don't mind much). Anyway, now almost all the females in the village seem to know this little secret of mine, that I enjoy Kagome's scent.

And they decided to make me tell them what it smells like.

As if I'd tell them one of my secrets.

They tried to bribe me, tried to blackmail me, tried even some weak spells on me. Really, humans can be so stubborn, especially the wenches...

I told them it's my secret and I won't tell them and guess what they said? "Aww that's so sweet! But really, Inuyasha, tell us!"

Of course I didn't do that and now they're trying to sneak up on me at random asking stupid questions, trying to guess.

"She smells like cherry blossoms, right?" said one the previous week, her hands clasped in front of her chest, her eyes sparkling.

"She smells of lavender or mint?" suggested another.

"She smells of sunshine and wild flowers!"

"Her scent is one of lilies!" exclaimed one from behind a bush near the river where I was washing my kimono.

And so on, and so on...

Idiots. Pathetic, emotional, romantic idiots. All of them.

Kagome smells of a young human female, a bit on the sweaty side when she's tired or it's a hot day. She covers her natural scent with some smelling potions like shampoo, but it won't fool me. She smells just like any other girl her age.

And yet, somehow, her scent is as enticing as the fragrance of a steaming ramen cup.

Chapter Text

A young man was napping in his favorite tree, which was growing on a hillside. The branch on which he was sleeping was very low, but it was still high enough to get a little extra breeze. He had only to open his eyes to see the entire valley with the village, the rice fields and orchards. But right now he was asleep, enjoying the cool share the tree was providing.

He was totally unaware of a small child sneaking his way. The child was smirking a little wicked youkai smile (the one Sango found especially cute) and paying a lot of attention to moving soundlessly. It was the hard part because he was so giddy right now, seeing thee sleeping young man so close...

The boy neared the tree and looked up once more. He took a silent, deep breath and prepared his tool. He had bough it all the way from Kaede's hut. Now he emptied his lungs in the paper bag he was holding. When it was full he squeezed the entrance so the air wouldn't flee. He glanced up to make sure his target was still blissfully unaware of his recent action. And then...

...The boy jumped up.

And when he was on the same level with the older boy's head...

...He hit the bag with his hand.

Three things happened almost at the same time. The bag exploded. The sleeping man was no longer sleeping. He screamed in surprise, lost his balance and fell to the ground. As he looked up he saw the giggling boy landing a few paces away from him. He saw the glee twinkling in his golden eyes.

"Touga!" he roared and ran after the fleeing boy, following the head of white hair and dog ears as the boy made his hasty retreat through the tall grass.

"Mommy, daddy!" the running child exclaimed. "Uncle Shippou's mean to me!"

Kagome and Inuyasha, who were enjoying a peaceful picnic on a blanket on the top of the same hill, exchanged amused glances.

"It feels familiar somehow," Inuyasha mumbled and looked to the sky. "I remember it... But from where...?" Sango and Miroku, who were sitting with them, chuckled.

Kagome giggled and opened her arms to wrap them around the boy who just ran from behind the grass and jumped in her lap.

"Mommy, save me!" he exclaimed, hiding in her embrace. He sounded frightened, but he was grinning while pulling Kagome's sleeve over his head.

"I guess now comes the osuwari part," she said. The man beside her chuckled while the one who just came to a halt in front of the miko paled visibly.

"Karma," said Miroku, who was sitting just beside the hanyou. "Is a very, very beautiful woman, who waves her exquisite rear in front of you just to hit you with a huge weapon when you reach for it."

"Indeed, monk," Sango glared at him. "Or she makes her husband sleep at Kaede's for talking like that in front of children."

"See?" Miroku nudged Inuyasha. "Karma."

Chapter Text

Rest was something the whole Inu gang wasn't used to, but what they were enjoying now, in a way. It was the second week Kagome was spending in her time. Sango had broken her leg and the gang was grounded for a couple of weeks. Miroku went to see his master, who was ill and Inuyasha was spending time in his forest or in Kagome's house. In the past he could nap all he wanted, but in the future he could get tasty food. Downsides were that in the past he was mostly bored and in the future he had to do chores. And since he was a man of action, so he was helping Kagome's family more and more while the girl was in school. To Inuyasha's wonder the girl was bringing him ramen every time she was returning home. He was not sure why she was doing that, but he wasn't going to discourage her.

Everyday he was taking a nap before dinnertime, because Kagome's fiends were visiting her every day to work on some project. He didn't mind because he could pester her later and got extra ramen - maybe it was a reward for being out of sight. He'd play with Souta, but for some reason the boy was always busy with some project he was doing for one of his classes. Inuyasha offered to help him, but the boy reclined saying that his grandfather was helping him.

Visitors were not coming today to the shrine and Inuyasha was taking advantage of the front yard. He had a scarf around his head, but he didn't expect anyone to approach him for a while. He was laying on the grass under the Sacred Tree, Buyo sprawled across hi belly like a heavy, purring kitty blanket. But suddenly the cat stopped purring and the hanyou looked up to see Kagome's three friends approaching him, each holding a shopping plastic bag with some ramen cups inside. 'Huh? Where's Kagome, she should come back with them from the school?'

"Inuyasha..." started Yuka softly, her eyes focused on him. The hanyou sat up, feeling uncomfortable and confused.

.

Elsewhere, Kagome was returning home. She had to take a longer way because the store nearest her home was out of ramen for some reason. Kagome wasn't aware of the fact that she was supplying Inuyasha with more ramen than usual. She was concerned about her essays, tests and the fact Souta was looking at her oddly every time she saw him. It was like the boy was waiting for something, wanted her to do something. Upon being asked he just shrugged and didn't give any real reply beside of a 'keh'

Without a doubt someone was a bad influence on the kid.

Anyway, this was the second week of Kagome staying home and the girl was enjoying her time with her future friends. She relearned how bowing school was and felt that she wouldn't miss it that much after returning to the past.

She was just climbing up the shrine steps, looking under her feet mindlessly. At least nowadays it was much easier to climb them. She was thinking about her plans for this afternoon and planning the list of supplies when suddenly she stopped.

The fronts of the stairs had each written a few words. She knew about it, according to her mother her grandfather and brother painted the kanji a couple of weeks ago. There were mostly wishes for good luck and blessings, which were supposed to make the climb up fun and also pit the visitors in a good mood. It was like earning the blessings while walking the steps.

But the words written on the step in front of her were different.

They spelled: "Buy more ramen."

The miko blinked and lifted her gaze to read was on the rest of the steps, now moving slower and paying attention. She climbed up twenty steps before finding another unusual message.

"Kiss Inuyasha."

Both the messages were written in a hand not as steady as her grandfather's and Kagome realized it was probably Souta's doing. The latter looked fresh and when Kagome touched it a little of the paint stayed on her fingertip,

'That dork, what he wanted to do? No one reads those,' she thought as she wiped the paint off her finger and grabbed her shopping bag full of ramen cups. 'Which is fortunate, because the visitors would be wondering what's that supposed to mean... It's not like anyone knows Inuyasha...' she mused. For some reason when she thought about the hanyou the memory of Kaguya's palace came to her mind, the warmth of Inuyasha's lips against hers... 'I'd like to experience it again...''

Kagome found herself blushing and shaking her head to get the memory out of her mind. That is when she heard a desperate cry of a hanyou in distress.

When Kagome ran up the stairs and entered the yard she saw the most unusual thing in her life. There was Inuyasha, laying on the ground, Ayumi and Eri pinning him down while Yuka was sitting on his torso and leaning her face close to the struggling boy's face. Some distance away Souta and his grandfather were standing and just observing the action unfold.

Inuyasha noticed Kagome's approach and called her name while trying to get free from her friends' grasp without harming them.

"Girls!" Kagome dropped her shopping bag and waved her hands to get their attention "What are you doing to Inuyasha?!"

The trio looked up at her and jumped to their feet, letting Inuyasha go and starting apologizing and explaining that they felt a distinct craving to see how it was to kiss the boy.
"But why had it to be my boy?!" Kagome demanded, ignoring the stunned expression on Inuyasha's face.

The trio started to look at the ground under their feet sheepishly.

"Hm that's not what I expected," commented grandfather Higurashi while scratching his chin.

"Well, I told you, that we should've written Kagome's name first. Now it's going to affect everyone who walks up the shrine steps," Souta replied firmly. "Next time we should go with something more personalized."

"But when you see your name won't it catch your attention?" the old man looked at his grandson, deep in thought.

"My teacher says that if you put it smartly somewhere in the project the receiver won't pay much attention to it," Souta replied.

"What are they talking about?" Inuyasha cocked his head to the side.

"The dorks wrote messages on the shrine steps and put some subliminal message."

"What?" Inuyasha still didn't understand. Ayumi, blushing in embarrassment, tried to explain, but Kagome was better at handling how to present the futuristic stuff to the feudal-era-minded hanyou.

"Something like hypnosis. They wrote messages to our unconscious selves to follow simple orders. In this case it was to buy you ramen and kiss you," the miko shook her head and crossed her arms in front of her. "It obviously failed, so they better remove the messages.."

Everyone present looked at the shopping bags hanging from her elbows. A lazy, cat-like smile appeared on Inuyasha's lips when he looked at his favorite miko dropping the bags of ramen. When she looked at him he raised an eyebrow, as if asking for what she was waiting. She licked her lips and realized he was looking at the tip of her tongue as it darted across

"Higurashi?" everyone jumped and turned when they heard a quiet voice. Hojo was standing in the gate of the shrine grounds. He had a shopping bag full of ramen cups in his hand.

Inuyasha fled to the well house.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was enjoying himself, resting on his favorite branch of the Sacred Tree, fully intending to spend the night there. The evening was quiet and peaceful, the heat of the day slowly fading as the sun was hiding behind the horizon. The wind was practically non-existent, rustling of leaves was like a soft melody lulling him to slumber.

His favorite miko was busy this evening, performing her miko duties with the old hag. Normally he'd stay at Kagome's side even if she had some wok to do - after all she could need his help in something - but he sure wasn't going to stay in Kaede's hut this night. Not when one of the village women was giving birth there and the place positively reeked of the mixture of scents. He was in the hearing distance, so if Kagome really needed him she'd just have to call him.

His own house - a before-mating gift from Sesshomaru ("This one doesn't grant you, little brother, a house. This one merely wishes to make sure that one of this one's esteemed father's blood isn't living in a cave, even if he's merely a hanyou.") was still unfinished, since the tree youkai responsible for the built was trying to find a smith to make pipes for the plumbing. Inuyasha snickered when he remembered the youkai's face when Kagome and himself had told him how they want their house to look like. Kagome wanted all she could get and Inuyasha wasn't one to tell 'no' to his intended.

Anyway, the Sacred Tree was his bed now, like many times before. And there was nothing wrong with it, it was familiar, serene and comfortable to be around the tree. Only one thing was marring the blissful evening...

Miroku sighed and rolled in his spot between the tree roots. Inuyasha glared down and saw the monk look up at him with dejected expression.

"What do you do here?" Inuyasha asked. Miroku had been there for last hour, with a blanket wrapped around his body.

"Oh, my friend," the monk sighed. "This man is the most unlucky one, believe me."

"Lemme guess, Sango kicked you out?" Inuyasha raised an eyebrow.

"Exactly!" Miroku nodded and sighed yet again. "And I was totally innocent, for the record."

"Yeah, yeah, right. So what did she say? You're sleeping here for the whole week?"

"Hopefully not. Don't get me wrong, my friend, but I don't enjoy spending my nights under a tree, away from the heavenly beauty of my dear Sango's smile and warmth of her embrace."

"Keh." Inuyasha got comfortable again.

"So..." came Miroku's voice after a few minutes, when Inuyasha was dozing off on his branch. "What get you in the dogtree?"

Chapter Text

Inuyasha sneaked in Kagome's room through her window. He took a deep inhale, simply enjoying the scent of the girl living in this place mixed with the odd scents of her futuristic belongings.

He had not seen Kagome since their last quarrel ten days earlier. He had been visiting her time, of course, seeing her from a distance, but afraid to approach the miko. Actually, he had wanted to speak to the girl eight days ago, but Souta had warned him she was still angry at him.

Inuyasha sighed and made his way to Kagome's bed. He sat on it and rubbed his face with his hand. The girl was in school right now, so he felt pretty safe in her room. She wouldn't come here and scream 'osuwari' at him for no reason. He growled as he remembered the last time he had been sat. It wasn't his fault the words never came out of his mouth like they should. The wench was smart, why couldn't she realize by now what he meant? He felt lonely when she was away, he felt like there was a gaping hole in his chest when her scent was fading around him. It was frightening how much he was addicted to the girl's presence at his side. She had more power over him than just the beads, but luckily was unaware of her influence...

Inuyasha leaned back, enjoying the scent of his miko, letting it soothe his loneliness, calm his spirit. He could just hope she'd get over her rage soon, so he could spend time around her, not creep in her room when she was away.

As he outstretched his hands above his head his claws touched something silky and the hanyou looked up in curiosity. There was something just under the soft pillow and Inuyasha was going to dig it out.

With a swift move of his hand he reached under the pillow and pulled out from under it a small doll. It was a simple doll sewn from rags and definitely made by an amateur, but Inuyasha didn't care.

It had a red outfit, with little pink blobs for hands and feet sticking out of the sleeve and pant legs of the billowy robe. It had a big round head with two golden buttons sewn where eyes should be. With black thread someone made thick brows, nose and mouth. Long and silky white hair was falling in a tangled mane down the doll's back and two triangles of a fabric covered with something similar to fur were sticking out of the top of the head.

Inuyasha was staring dumbly at the doll of himself for a long minute, his mind completely empty.

"Why does she have a doll of me?" he asked the room, but the room didn't provide any answer. He spent some more time just examining the doll - obviously Kagome's creation. It smelled strongly of the miko. But it was missing something. Something very important.

When Kagome came back home the doll was placed back under the pillow and the hanyou was long gone.

.

Kagome sighed dejectedly and closed her bedroom door behind herself. 'It's two weeks since I returned and he didn't come for me,' she thought and closed her eyes, trying not to cry. 'I knew it, I finally made him realize he doesn't need a weak, always complaining girl around. He probably went to Kikyou to be his jewel shard detector...'

She knew she should go through the well - just to say goodbye to the rest of her friends from the past and to give her jewel shards to them - but she was too scared to do that. She was too afraid to face them, to learn the truth about them replacing her with the other - much stronger - miko. It would mean that her adventure there was over, that she had nothing else to do there. That the only person who she needed to be happy didn't need her anymore.

Kagome bit her bottom lip. 'Don't think that! Maybe Inuyasha's still angry at you for sitting him so many times, but he would never just replace you with Kikyou without telling you a word! He'd at least come for the shards and to say goodbye.'

'But he didn't come for two weeks. What if they're fighting Naraku there? Or are hurt...?' Worry for her friends' well-being flooded her mind and Kagome clenched her fists, coming to a decission.

She had to go back and make sure they were safe. 'If they don't need me anymore I will at least know, not worry here,' she thought. She turned around, determined to go to sleep and visit the past in the morning. Inuyasha had warned her more than once not to go through the well alone after sunset.

The miko felt warmth in her heart when she thought about her at times too protective favorite hanyou. He was doing his best to hide his big, soft heart, but she knew him too well not to see how a good person he was. Stubborn, rash, brazen, arrogant, at times stupid, annoying and violent boy, who could make the cutest lost puppy expression in the world without even trying. Who would put his life at stake to save innocent people, who was honorable and honest no matter what.

Kagome moved her pillow and froze, realizing that something was wrong. Her Inu doll, her cuddle buddy, was gone.

Her musings about Inuyasha forgotten the miko started to look for her little Inu. She had made the doll some time ago and liked to cuddle it when she was visiting home. It never left her bed, usually spending the days under her pillow. But now her little Inu was gone. 'Who would... Souta, if you took my lil Inu I'll gut you!'

Morbidly embarrassed at the thought that someone found her doll Kagome turned around, about to let loose a cry of rage.

Something red under her window caught her attention and Kagome looked that way.

"Lil Inu!" she exclaimed happily at the sight of her handmade doll sitting there. She squatted by the doll to pick it up when she noticed it was wrapped around something. "Huh?"

Kagome poked the doll and when its arms fell from around the object her eyes widened. The thing the doll was wrapped protectively around was another doll! It was done with even less skill than hers, but she recognized her school uniform and mane of black hair, two brown buttons were sewn on a face adorned with huge, silly grin.

She realized that it was a doll of herself when she heard silent tapping at her window and looked up.

Inuyasha was sitting behind the glass panel, tapping it with his claw, his yellow eyes looking straight at her and the dolls. Kagome panicked and did the first thing that came to her mind.

"Osuwari!"

.

Mama Higurashi was putting her sewing tools back in the drawer. Inuyasha had brought them back not too long ago and the woman was wondering what for he had needed them. Clearly not for his robes, they were mending themselves. She shrugged and smiled.

'It's not important. The important thing is that he's coming here, which means he'll soon make up with Kagome and she'll be off to the past," she thought. "And this means I'll need to refill the ramen cupboard."

Mama Higurashi sat by the table with a cup of fresh tea, smiling to her thoughts, when she heard a loud thud just outside. She gasped, startled, but didn't go to the window to check what it was. She knew perfectly well. She heard footsteps running down the stairs, then going around the house to stop under the kitchen window. Mama Higurashi cold clearly see her daughter looking down at something - or rather someone - on the ground.

"Oh, goodness, Inuyasha, I'm sorry, I didn't mean it!"

"Stupid wench," drifted to Mama Higurashi's ears through the crack in the kitchen window.

"I dare you to say it to my face, dog-boy!"

Mama Higurashi grinned when she saw the white-haired boy leap to his feet and wrap his arms around her daughter.

"Wench," he murmured in her hair, the name spoken in a soft voice.

"I have some leftover oden, if you two are interested," Mama Higurashi said aloud, grinning like a kitsune when the startled and deathly embarrassed pair realized they had an audience looked her way and blushed hotly.

Chapter Text

The camp was well-hidden, but she found it. Actually, she found it by an accident, stumbled upon a small clearing in the forest, near a lake. Her pale eyes looked around and spied the lake reflecting sunlight not far away. She could see the group playing on the shore.

After a minute of watching them run around, roll in the sweet-smelling summer grass and laughing she realized it was the first time she saw them act like this, be so worry-free, so relaxed. Her eyes were following the flowing black and purple of the monk's robe when he ran after the kitsune, followed closely by the slayer. She realized that a monk a slayer running after a youkai usually meant the latter would die, Here - the worst that could come to the fox was tickling. Suddenly a new couple joined the image and the woman standing in the camp hidden on a hillside felt a memory of pain in her chest.

The girl was walking backwards, her both hands gripping the boy's wrist as she practically dragged him to the rest. He seemed hesitant, but didn't try to get free. Actually, he seemed to like that the girl was so adamant about including him in the group's game. The kitsune jumped on his head and soon after the boy joined the couple running after the kid around the laughing girl.

She sighed and smiled softly, melancholy in her eyes. He had never been laughing like now around her. He had never showed her this boyish, playful side of his nature. He had never had other people laughing with him when she had been alive.

Her reincarnation granted him this freedom and acceptance - something she bad never given him. As much as she didn't like her reincarnation and felt envy for all she had and had done with and for Inuyasha, she could see easily that the girl in strange robes was healing him, was making him grow stronger and more mature without actually trying. She was replacing her in his heart and there was nothing she could do about it. She was still unsure if she wanted to do something about it.

The girl was so much like her - seemingly fragile, but strong willed, fair and smart, generous and kind, selfless and gentle. She was pure, her heart open for anyone who was in need. And yet... There were differences. Some were easy to pick, like the color of her eyes or the warmer voice, some were showing in her actions and opinions. She didn't discriminate anyone, for her a youkai or a hanyou was just as much a person as a human. She was free of hate, of distrust, of bitterness. She wasn't bound by her training, she was free to be herself and clearly didn't care about the world's opinions.

The woman turned her eyes away from the playing group and looked at their camp. It was not big, but arranged to be comfortable for everyone. Their beddings were ready, wood for the fire needed just a spark, a pile of more wood was waiting nearby. Pots and bowls were prepared as well. This was a camp of a group of travelers who were used to spending nights in the woods. All things they wouldn't use were stored away in bags which were piled in one corner of the camp. She even spotted a line with washed clothes hanging where they could dry and not prevent movement around the glade. She saw various pieces of clothing, but one in particular caught her attention.

A cool hand reached out and pulled from the line a white blouse. It had been patched up in a few spots, but was clean and smelled of flowers. She looked at the strange kimono, which always intrigued her. Slowly she drew the fabric against her chest, looking down at the garment. There was a short green piece of clothing to go with it, but she didn't find it on the line. While the kimono looked a bit similar to the clothing she was used to, the green robe was totally foreign. It was showing so much skin! She imagined herself wearing such an outfit and found herself blushing.

'Would he like me in such a robe...? Would he see her in me if I wore it?'

She hung the garment back on the line, shaking her head at her foolish thought. 'He would probably think I'm insane. Dressing up like her... Would it be admitting that I sometimes wish I was more like her?'

Her eyes found her reincarnation, running here and there near the lake with her friends. Not for the first time she thought that even if she was the 'first' Kagome was the 'present' incarnation of their soul. No matter how many times she said otherwise - it was Kagome who was the rightful owner of the bit of soul hidden within her clay body. She felt guilty for holding onto it, but she was honor-bound, she had a duty to perform before letting go of the souls within herself.

And, no matter how sad it was to her to think that, her duty wasn't to heal Inuyasha's heart. Not anymore.

Chapter Text

Mrs. Higurashi was standing in the corridor of her house in total darkness. Only the light from the open kitchen door was breaking the darkness. The middle-aged woman had a perfect view inside the kitchen from her spot just beside the stairs.

And it was a quite entertaining view, at least to the woman.

An inu hanyou in bright red kimono, his back facing the corridor, stood beside the counter. He had his clawed hands rested on the top of the counter, claws scratching the wooden surface lightly as he tapped his fingers on it. His white waterfall of hair was swaying as he was moving his head from the one side to the other. His ears were moving too: swiveling around, twitching, laying flat just to perk up the next moment. He looked agitated, deep in thought. It would be fun to just watch the hanyou's body language as he stood in front of a bowl of chocolate cookies standing on top of the counter, but Mrs. Higurashi was more focused on something else. Something even more extraordinary than a hanyou protector of her sister standing in her kitchen in the middle of the night.

Everyone could see a youkai or a hanyou. Sometimes they were shielding themselves from the sight of regular humans and it took to have reiki to see them. But only exceptionally skilled and gifted mikos could master seeing something more odd, more eerie than the youki-wielding beings - the spirits of those beings.

And right now Mrs. Higurashi, miko of great lineage, was observing the two little figures sitting on Inuyasha's shoulders.

On his left shoulder sat a ten centimeters tall miniature of his human self. He had his tiny arms crossed and hidden in his sleeves, glaring at the occupant of Inuyasha's right shoulder - the miniature youkai self of the hanyou was standing there, his hands on his obi. Silently, Mrs. Higurashi mused that it made sense for the spirits to appear that way and in their spots. It was obvious that within the boy his human and youkai selves were warring, balancing each other. The human spirit was on his left side, closest to Inuyasha's loving heart, while the youkai spirit was on his right side, because Inuyasha was right-handed and more often channeled his youki through his right shoulder to fight, to protect those he loved. One, who knew the boy would be surprised to learn that the spirits were actually not arguing often,

But now, the spirits were arguing. Sort of. In their own way.

"I can eat one or two," said the human. He wasn't referring to Inuyasha as 'we' or 'you', indicating that the boy didn't divide himself to human and youkai in his mind. It was a good sign, thought Mrs. Higurashi. Having two or more spirits wasn't unusual, but dividing one's own mind wouldn't be goo. The spirits on Inuyasha's shoulders weren't two different personalities of the hanyou boy, they were more like two sides of the same coin. "No one will notice."

"Feh, knowing my luck someone will notice and then Kagome will sit me for stealing food," barked the youkai spirit, flashing his red eyes at the human spirit. Inuyasha's ears lowered. Mrs. Higurashi reminded herself that she had to talk to her daughter about overusing the beads.

"They have plenty of food, two cookies won't make a difference. And I so rarely have a chance to get something sweet," complained the human.

"Taking what isn't mine is stealing," growled the youkai sternly, even if his eyes were drifting to the tempting bowl of sweets in front of the hanyou. Then he answered the rest of his human companion statement "It's because Kagome brings all her sweets for Shippou," the youkai shrugged and sat down to assume the same position as the human was currently in. "The kid's going to be addicted to sugar in no time."

"Keh, I tried to warn her that kids in my time get less sugar than in this crazy era and it's not healthy," mumbled the human. "On the other hand, I've never got much sugar when I was a kid, growing up in a forest and stuff."

"And it was for the better," youkai said proudly. "This way I grew strong and don't depend on others."

"Yeah, right," human glared at his companion. "I depend on my pack, my friends. They're my rag-tag family. And family members can help themselves to a cookie or two when they're hungry at night."

"Keh!" Mrs. Higurashi grinned when she saw the youkai spirit glancing at the bowl of cookies in front of Inuyasha. The hanyou's eyes were plastered on it all the time.

"Kagome wouldn't like me to starve," the human said, trying to make the youkai see things his way. "Even if she doesn't know how many times I went to sleep hungry before."

"No food is a good punishment for a clumsy hunt," growled the youkai spirit and Inuyasha nodded his head firmly. "It makes you try harder the next time.I would never learn how to fend for myself if someone handed me everything."

A soft silence fell in the kitchen as the hanyou looked at the bowl of cookies longingly. Both his spirits were looking at it too, with a mixture of hunger and contemplation on their tiny faces.

"I guess i could wake Kagome up and ask her, but I can easily foresee myself kissing the carpet if I do that," the human said in a thoughtful tone.

"Better not," said the both spirits at the same time. Mrs. Higurashi almost burst into giggling when she heard that. It seemed that Inuyasha really didn't like the rosary. She wasn't surprised, with the command word being osuwari and the effect it had on him...

The woman decided to spare Inuyasha the internal struggle of if he should eat or not the cookies - although it seemed the struggle was over when she took the first step, because Inuyasha's hands lifted from the counter and hid in his sleeves, as if to help him resist the temptation. His tense body relaxed as he started to move away from the bowl of sweets. She walked into the kitchen; as she lost her concentration the spirits disappeared from Inuyasha's shoulders. As soon as her slippers clicked on the tiles of the kitchen floor the hanyou let out a shriek of surprise similar to a surprised dog's yelp and jumped to the top of the counter, almost knocking down the bowl of cookies standing there.

"Y-you...!" the startled hanyou stammered, his yellow eyes fixed on her, wide and anxious. "I... I didn't... I wasn't s-stealing! I mean..." he uttered, watching the woman approaching. Mrs. Higurashi's face lit up with a warm, soft smile. She knew the boy was as wild as one can be, rude and brash at times, but he was never like this towards her.

Well, the smile was calming... Until he remembered Kagome could smile and sit him still. This realization made Inuyasha pale visibly and try to explain his presence in the kitchen once more.

...Until Mrs. Higurashi stuffed a cookie in his mouth, silencing him efficiently. She giggled when she saw his eyes almost widen even more in shocked surprise.

"You're okay, dear," she assured the boy crouching on top of the counter. "You are allowed to be anywhere in the house. Or eat if you are hungry, no matter the time."

She reached her hand up and rubbed the frozen boy's ear affectionately before patting his shoulder and walking to the kettle to make herself the tea she had wanted to drink before going to bed.

Her smile just widened when she heard munching behind her back. She glanced back before pouring boiling water in the cup. The boy was sitting on the counter, munching on the cookie in his hand.

On his shoulders two spirits, so similar and yet so different, were staring back at her with the same expression pf awe, admiration and gratitude.

Chapter Text

Trouble

Inuyasha was trying to remember when he had seen Miroku so agitated. The monk was dragging him by his sleeve, not really answering his polite inquiries what the hell was going on. his lead. He just kept mumbling about needing help, needing saving... Inuyasha could sense any youkai around, so it had to be something different.

They hurried out of the village and to the river bank. There' beside a thick wall of bushes hiding the river side, Miroku finally stopped and knelt down, parting the branches and gesturing for Inuyasha to follow

"What?" Inuyasha crouched low and Miroku pointed a finger at the grassy space between their bushes and the river.

Two very familiar girls were sitting on the grass, a young, handsome man sitting between them. Inuyasha tilted his head, hearing the boy complimenting Ami's ribbons.

"Oh, he's using the Smile Number Six on her!" exclaimed Miroku. "And she's falling for the Compliment Number seventeen!"

Inuyasha saw Ami blushing at the boy's words. She reached up and played with one of her red ribbons. The boy hurriedly complimented the blue ribbons Mia had in her hair, earning a brilliant smile from the other Miroku's daughter.

When Inuyasha glanced at Miroku the monk was biting his knuckles, observing his precious girls being flattered by a professional womanizer like himself.

"You need to save them!" he finally exclaimed and looked at his hanyou friend.

"What? Go fulfill your fatherly duty yourself, monk," Inuyasha scowled at him. There was no way he was going to go and tell Sango's daughters she were not to speak to this boy. He valued his life too much for the.

"I can't!" Miroku grabbed the sleeve of Inuyasha's kimono. "Please, my dear friend, please, save my baby girls!"

Inuyasha glanced at the trio sitting on the grass. The boy boldly and sneakily reached for the girls' bottom. Miroku growled, making a good impression of an inu youkai.

"Heh, you have nothing to worry about, monk," Inuyasha chuckled when two slaps could be heard from the riverside meadow. Miroku sighed in relief.

"Well, they're definitely Sango's girls," he said, pride clear in his voice.

Chapter Text

In a peaceful meadow a girl was playing with her dolls, singing and smiling, having no worry for her safety. Slowly a dragon youkai approached the human child, its two heads bowing to sniff the girl's hair. The child, instead of running away with screams of terror, turned around and kissed both noses of the youkai.

"Ah-Uh!" she greeted the dragon youkai, who sighed and plopped to the ground behind her, his body curling protectively around his charge.

Jaken was still pouting by the fire, unhappy that the Lord Sesshomaru hadn't told him where he was going yet again. Rin thought that Jaken acted silly, their lord didn't have to tell him anything and Jaken should just be happy for getting any information their lord wanted to give him. She trusted him that he'd give them all the information they needed and didn't care about things which were kept secret from her.

Meanwhile, out of the hearing range of any of the trio, a woman was laying sprawled on her stomach on a fallen log. She was catching her breath and her limbs were shivering with the pleasure she had just experienced. She wasn't uncomfortable, because between her naked front and the rough tree bark was the softest furry tail in the whole land. She smirked when she felt the tail flex under her and she lazily ran her fingers through it. She could feel the warm limb shiver under her caress and she heard a low groan of pleasure from behind her.

"You like it, huh?" she glanced back over her shoulder at the man sitting behind her, straddling the log just like she did. Instead of replying he reached forward and ran a single claw down her spine, causing her to arch her back and gasp. "I take this as a yes."

He gave her a heated glance, his golden eyes boring into her red ones. He was always so calm, so impossibly cool, that every time he was showing emotions it was even more striking. Seeing desire in his eyes was always sending bolts of excitement through her blood and she wanted to fan herself with her fan, resting on top of the pile of their clothes near their spot. His two swords were right beside it, easy to reach in case someone was dumb enough to interrupt the man behind her. Not many were stupid enough to dare and bother the Lord of the West when he was with a lady and the whole meadow was full of their mixed scents.

After a moment she sat up and leaned her back against his perfectly chiseled chest, enjoying the warmth of his skin against hers. She loved to feel his muscles flexing under that warm, smooth skin. His tail followed her motion, draping over her and caressing her breasts and stomach with its delicate fur. She sighed in pleasure,

During their trysts he rarely caressed her with his hand, but his tail was more than enough to stimulate her. Sometimes she was wondering how it would be to be with him when he had both his hands. The mere thought of his claws scraping her skin was enough to make her shiver. The man behind her pulled her closer and nuzzled the side of her neck.

"I feel your personal Tenseiga's up again," she teased and gasped when he bit her lightly .

"It's nothing like that useless sword," he growled low, his chest vibrating with the force of the growl.

She went limp, submitting to the male, but then she reached up and behind herself to touch his cheek, her fingertips stroking his markings.

"You still jealous about the hanyou's sword?" he growled, but she ignored him. "Oh, come on, it might be huge, but he's no swordsman, he barely knows how to use the thing."

"It's still insulting that the half-breed wields a more magnificent sword. I am the heir."

"How I see it the size isn't so important. And if it's for you i can assure you that Tenseiga isn't a short wakizashi, it's a full-length katana, believe me. You mastered your sword, are perfect wielding it. I'm sure you could fell a hundred youkai in one night, but I hope you'll be felling only me. He probably wouldn't know what to do after sticking it in his target," she chuckled.

"Probably?" the voice behind her ear made her smirk, he was intrigued and flattered. She arched into his tail, hugging it to her chest and running her hands through the fur.

"I've never heard about him using his built-in sword before," she grinned when she looked back and saw his face. "He's still a pup."

"That he is," the male nodded and smirked when he felt the female rub her behind against his front. "I see that you are eager to indulge in another swordplay?"

"What was your clue?" she gasped in pleased surprise when he started nibbling her neck and lifted her from the log, depositing her on his lap. He was willing to show her that her theory about Tenseiga's might was true and he was willing to waste the whole night to prove it. Judging by the youkai woman's gasp she wouldn't mind.

Chapter Text

It was a lovely, summer day. It was not too hot and the clouds from this morning were now gone, leaving the sky bright blue. Deep in Inuyasha's Forest a girl was looking at the lush plant life around her. She was resting a hand against an old, dry well positioned in the center of a meadow. She wasted a minute to just take in the beauty of the forest before finally pushing herself off the well and starting to make her way through the forest.

She felt a little confused and lost, trying to find a path which would lead her somewhere. Finally she spotted a tall tree, much taller than any other, hovering over the treetops. She smiled, recognizing the tree and immediately made her way in its direction. From that tree she could get home.

When she reached the tree she found that there was a young man pinned to the bark, seemingly sleeping, his head bowed. She stood there, observing the sunlight dancing on the mane of almost white hair. She shyly approached the young man, her sight drawn to the bright red ancient-looking robe he wore. She reached a hand and touched the rough material of his hakama.

"H-hey...?" she carefully climbed a root to stand on the same height he was. She noticed an arrow coming from the top of his shoulder, pinning him to the tree. He had a soft smile on his lips, as if he was dreaming pleasant dreams.

She noticed his ears and rubbed them softly, partially expecting the man to wake up. He was very handsome and she found herself really wanting to kiss him. She glanced down at him and gasped when she saw that her ear rubbing had an unexpected effect on his body.

The tent in his hakama was pretty impressive. The girl was almost too embarrassed to see that this simple gesture could make him react this way, but she was also excited at knowing that she had such power to make him react that way.

A hesitant hand reached for the ties of his hakama and she glanced up to his face to see his expression unchanged, only his brows were knitted as if in concentration.

"Aww, you want attention..." she cooed playfully and tugged the ties of his pants loose, letting the baggy fabric fall to his feet and pool around his ankles. She knelt down and found his flesh under the hem of his kosode. With a grin and mischievous glint in her eyes she leaned in and gave him all her attention.

A few moments later she heard him groan and one of his hands came to caress her cheek. She hummed happily around what she had in her mouth and felt his hand grip her hair tightly.

"S-Sango!" a startled cry made the young woman jump and turn her head around to see the calling one.

Kagome stood on the end of the path to the Sacred Tree, staring with wide eyes at the couple. She had a hand pressed against her chest and the other covering her gasping mouth. Kagome's face went pale, then red.

"Um..."

"Holy shit, I knew I should've burned that fucking wig!" Inuyasha growled from beside Kagome. He glared at the man who was now wide awake and looking sheepishly at the newcomers. "Can't you two keep it to your bedroom?! The tree was our special spot!" The hanyou was positively pissed, his ears laid back as he wrapped an arm around his wife.

"You know, we don't mind sharing special spots," the man grinned and got an elbow to his thigh from the female still kneeling in front of him on the root. "Right, my dearest?"

But Inuyasha and Kagome were already out of sight, they could hear Inuyasha's profanities getting more and more silent as the hanyou was putting distance between the Sacred Tree and himself pretty rapidly.

"Hm," Sango hummed, hoping that their friends would one day forgive them.

"Shall we continue?" Miroku touched her chin and turned her head back to him. "Let's think, at that point Inuyasha told Kagome: 'Pull the arrow that impales me and I shall impale you on my huge aaah...!"

Chapter Text

It happened after the gang had a run in with Sesshomaru's group. The two groups had spent a whole day together, resting and sharing information. Sesshomaru and Inuyasha had spent a good amount of time glaring at each other, but to everyone's surprise there had been no violence, not even verbal.

But now, a few days after this, it happened. Inuyasha was napping under a tree near a stream, happily enjoying his time and not-resting-after-a-fight-with-a-weasel-youkai that had happened that morning.

His human friends were talking, mending their clothes and just being glad that they were not rushing anywhere. There was a good chance they were going to stay in the meadow in the forest for this night and no one had any objections. Even Kagome, who usually got a bit cranky when they had to sleep on the ground for too long, was in a good mood.

"Oi, Inuyasha!"

The hanyou opened an eye and saw Shippou standing in front of him.

"What?" asked the inu hanyou, suspecting the kitsune was about to test a prank on him. And just when he was so comfortable...

"Will you... Uh..." Shippou looked down to his paw drawing circles in the dirt. "That is..."

"Spit it out, brat," Inuyasha sat up. Whatever it was that was making the boy look so anxious he wanted to know now. Still, he kept his distance, just in case it was just a trick to make him drop his guard.

"I... Last time we camped with Sesshomaru..." Shippou glanced up because upon hearing his brother's name the hanyou growled. "I was playing with that girl... And she told me she can fish. Canyouteachme?"

Green eyes looked with anxious hope into surprised golden orbs. Inuyasha tilted his head, trying to understand what was going on. Was Shippou asking him to teach him to fish?

Usually it was Inuyasha who was providing for the gang and till today Shippou never shown any interest in catching his food. Was it the sign of him growing up? Or maybe he finally realized he had to rely on himself, not Kagome's pocky stash? Or - Inuyasha grinned widely - his pride was wounded because a human girl could do something he couldn't.

Shippou paled when he saw Inuyasha's smile, but to his relief the hanyou wasn't going to reject him.

"Okay, fine. But you have to promise one thing," Inuyasha lifted a finger.

A couple of minutes later Kagome found Shippou and Inuyasha in the stream, both poised to pounce as their eyes were following movements of shadows in the water. Inuyasha was grunting something to the boy, who was listening intently. Suddenly Shippou jumped forward and with a cry of excitement started to wrestle a fish, trying to pull it out of the water. When it became clear that he wouldn't win and when the boy was soaked Inuyasha reached for him and pulled him out of the water, along with the fish as big as himself he was still clinging to.

"Try to catch smaller fish first," Inuyasha said as he put the boy on his feet and threw the wiggling fish to the shore where Kirara was patiently waiting to watch the catch. "You can't wrestle with it, you have to throw it out of the water fast."

Shippou nodded and bit his bottom lip, looking for a smaller target in the water around his feet.

Kagome smiled, glad that her boys were finally spending some quality time and bonding instead of fighting.

Shippou couldn't wait to meet Rin again and tell her that he, as a proud youkai, could fish and was better at it than anyone else, bringing fish for his entire group.

Inuyasha couldn't wait for Kouga to come sniffing around Kagome. He couldn't do anything about the wolf, but he was sure Kagome wouldn't get angry at Shippou 'by accident' setting Kouga's tail on fox fire.

Chapter Text

Dramatis Personae:
Filthyrich Naraku: the great family's head. He's the boss of a huge company, earns tons of money for doing nothing, is very strict when it comes to servants, wants to keep a pretty facade for the sake of his family's good name. He is a pretty good father, but he's unbelievably clueless.

Filthyrich Kagome: Naraku's daughter. She's beautiful, smart, has a good sense of humor, will inherit her dad's fortune. It's a miracle she's single. Or maybe it isn't, because she has a crush on someone and just won't date anyone else. And she wants to make sure her crush will not be able to walk for a couple of days after their first time. He won't, because she'll tie him to her bed. Eventually.

Bishy Sesshonaru: Kagome's cousin from her mother's side. It's a secret, but he's also Inuyasha's brother. He's actively looking for his lost brother, because until he brings him home he can't use his father's enormous fortune. He's pretty good friends with Kagome.

Grabbyhands Miroku: a friend of the family. He's perverted and usually used as a comic relief.

Goodfriend Sango: Kagome's friend. She's secretly sparring with Inuyasha because she wants to join the marital arts contest and collect money for her ill brother's surgery. For some reason she can't just use her immense fortune or borrow cash from her equally wealthy friends. It isn't important anyway, because she will win the contest, because Inu's just so good of a fighting teacher.

Hamena Inuyasha: a boy-maid. For some reason he's wearing a female maid outfit, but no one addressed the weirdness of the fact that a muscular and handsome boy wears a dress. He hates Naraku, but has a crush on his daughter, besides he has to work somewhere to save money and one day leave the city and start his own dojo. That doesn't really matter, what matters is that he hates Naraku with all his hate. Naraku knows it and amuses himself by ordering Inu around, knowing the boy has to obey or face being unemployed. He's also the lost brother of Bishy Sesshomaru.

 

Scene 1.
The Filthyrich family sat around the dinning table in the spacious dinning chamber of their enormous villa. Priceless paintings were hanging on pale golden walls. Rare furniture was ornamenting the chamber in an elegant manner. The table - carved from a very rare red birch tree - was covered by a pristine white cloth. The most delicate plates were standing in front of all the family members, wine was in their crystal cups. Everyone was dressed in fabulous clothes, despite the fact it was just a family dinner. Everyone was talking pleasantly around huge plates with expensive food and vases with white roses.

Naraku looked at everyone with a pleased smile, sipping his wine and just being glad that they looked so good. If there was any paparazzi in the garden beyond the huge windows they would take photos of a happy, wealthy family. He noticed Inuyasha coming in, pushing in front of himself a small cart with bowls, soup bowls and other dishware. All was delicate Chinese porcelain, worth more than Inuyasha could earn working for a whole year.

"Come her, Inuyasha," said Naraku with a move of his hand. "Bring the soup. We waited forever, did you want us to starve?"

Inuyasha and a few Filthyrich family members looked at the tons of fruit, salads and other edible things on the table just under Naraku's nose.

Keh," Inuyasha drove the cart to the head of the table, where Naraku sat on his throne-like chair.

The hanyou picked up a bowl of tomato soup and carefully poured the soup on Naraku's lap. Naraku's expensive white cashmere suit absorbed the soup and the stains looked like they wouldn't go away before the end of the world.

"Oh, no, what have I done, clumsy me!" Inuyasha exclaimed as he carefully put the bowl back on its spot. Then he glanced at his handiwork, pieces of tomatoes clinging to Naraku's pant legs. "Oh, my."

It didn't sound convincing.

"You ungrateful, graceless, poor boy!" exclaimed Naraku in genuine shock. The soup didn't burn him, it was just warm, but the damage done to his extravagant robe was great. Naraku pointed a well manicured finger at the hanyou. "You're going to regret this!"

"Daddy!" Kagome raised a hand. "Daddy, daddy, can I punish him? Pretty please?"

Naraku looked at his daughter, who sat just on the right of him. She was dressed in a green dress, with an emerald necklace around her neck and her hair in a high bun. She had a calming smile on her face.

"Oh no," gasped Inuyasha. There were emotions in his voice, but certainly not fear or anxiety. "Please, Mr. Filthyrich, don't make me your daughter's personal servant, she's obnoxious."

"I'll give you obnoxious, dog-boy." Kagome muttered under her nose. Naraku glanced between them and gave a nod.

"Very well. I expect from you to punish him well, Kagome," he said, proud that his daughter was so keen on dishing out a punishment for the clumsy servant.

"Oh, I'll make him scream for hours, promise, daddy," Kagome clasped her hands mirthfully and gave Inuyasha a sly smirk. The boy-maid gulped. He had a crush on the beautiful girl and now he was wondering how he will keep it a secret. After all now they'd spend much more time together. In her rooms. Him having to fulfill her every wish...

"I'm going to change," Naraku stood up. "And you, Inuyasha, don't dare to be around when I come back. Tell another servant to come and take your place."

"I'm not hungry anymore," Kagome jumped to her feet. "I'm going to my room."

"You shouldn't skip meals, dear," said Kagome's mother, worriedly.

"Don't worry, if I get hungry I'll send Inuyasha for some whipped cream and strawberries," Kagome grinned and winked at the boy-maid. "Come, let's punish you."

"See?" Naraku pointed after Kagome who was leading Inuyasha out. "That's a dutiful daughter." he said proudly and walked away to change.

 

Scene 2.
Miroku took Sesshomaru's hand in his free hand, the one glowed and wrapped in prayer beads. In the other he was holding his part of the script. Sesshomaru frowned as he saw the pale, solemn face of the monk. Miroku swallowed, stole a glance at the paper and took a deep breath.

"Okay... I know it's hard for you as well, lord Sesshomaru.., But would you consider bearing my child?" he asked breathlessly. For a second nothing happened.

Kagome flinched as Miroku flew past her chair and hit the wall behind her chair.

"I suppose it means no," said Sango and took a sip of her wine.

"I was just following the script..." moaned Miroku as he slid down the wall.

"Look what you did," Inuyasha groaned as well and went to fetch a broom to clean the mess which had been a porcelain statue of Venus just a moment ago.

"Hm," Sesshomaru glared at the retreating back of Kagome's servant. "Anyway, returning to the important discussion. I sent a new detective to investigate the site where they had seen my little lost brother the last time all those years ago."

"That's great," Kagome smiled.

"Did the detective find anything?" inquired Sango.

Sesshomaru sighed and shook his head. "No. My poor brother is still lost and we have no clue where he can be. I guess he's all grown up now, maybe struggling to survive in the vile, cold world," the youkai sighed. "I wish I could talk to him again, bring him home with me.."

"Move your perverted ass, Miroku, I have to clean your mess again," grumbled Inuyasha and poked the fallen man with his broom.

"Ah," moaned Miroku and grabbed Sango's ankle. "Fair lady, would you consider dragging my poor body to that couch over there?"

 

Scene 3.
Kagome smiled as Inuyasha approached her, his high ponytail waving behind his back as he walked. She had to admit to herself he was looking really good in his red and white maid outfit, a red ribbon in his hair. He bent down before her to place the tray he brought on the carpet before her. She looked at the tray to find a plate of cookies and two cups of bitter tea. Then she looked at Inuyasha who sat down on the carpet.

She blushed crimson red.

"What?" he barked, frowning at her expression.

"You can't sit cross-legged when you wear a short skirt, Inuyasha," Kagome tried to move her eyes from him, but it was hard to look away. Finally she looked up to his face, but not before noticing that his panties had a red ribbon on the front. It was like he had a gift under that skirt and she hoped she could unpack and play with it some time soon.

"What of- Aaaargh!" Inuyasha hurried to cover what the skirt wasn't covering. How embarrassing, showing his underwear to the girl he had a crush on. Will she think he was up to something? Hopefully she wouldn't think he was some perverted loon...

"I guess skirts are just not for you," Kagome grinned at the flushed boy. "So... My personal servant... Are you in a relationship?" he shook his head mutely. "Wanna to be in one?" Inuyasha nodded, blushing even more. Kagome felt a small blush on her cheeks too. "Wanna be in one with me? I really like you, so if you're willing to try..."

"Oh."

Kagome looked down to her lap and bit her bottom lip anxiously.

"It's not like you must to be my boyfriend if you don't want to," she added. She didn't want to use her status to make him her sex slave or anything, she genuinely wanted a relationship of equals. "I just..."

"If it's ok with you having a relationship with a poor hanyou like me," Inuyasha breathed out. "I'd like to try..."

Chapter Text

Kagome was happily splashing in the cool river water with Shippou. The boy was wearing the swim trunks she got him while she had a cute red one piece swimsuit.

Inuyasha seemed to like the view, because he was never looking away from them, not even to look hungrily at the roasting rabbit. After a few minutes Sango decided to join the duo in the river, it was too hot to stay away from the alluring coolness. Shyly hiding behind a nearby bush the exterminator changed into her own swimming assemble - a pair of shorts and a short sleeved shirt given to her by Kagome. Sango was brave to face countless youkai, but exposing so much flesh like Kagome was still a bit too much for her. Especially when the boys were watching. It was pretty obvious their hanyou leader wouldn't notice her state of exposed skin unless she walked in front of him stark naked, he was too busy admiring his favorite miko. But Miroku... Sango could feel his eyes on her bare calves and knees when she made her way in the river.

"Oh, my..." Miroku breathed and was very close to getting himself [punched in the face by an irate hanyou. But luckily for him Inuyasha noticed he wasn't looking at Kagome.

"Feh, watch the food, monk," the inu hanyou smirked and stood up to shed his kimono and kosode. Miroku chuckled when he noticed that the moment Inuyasha's chest got exposed a certain miko started to look a bit distracted and flushed. The blush on Kagome's cheeks rivaled this of Sango when Inuyasha followed the youkai slayer into the water.

It took Miroku a few minutes of watching his friends playing in the water with the kitsune to realize that he really wanted to join them. Not only because it was not fun to just watch. It was terribly hot and he was wearing his dark robes. He looked with a new longing at the river.

"Lord Sesshomaru, look!" Miroku looked back and saw the little group f four individuals making their way to the river. "Can Rin join master Inuyasha and his pack?"

Miroku didn't see Sesshomaru do anything beside blinking as he walked but the girl squealed and ran in the water, not minding her kimono. The group in the water greeted her happily, Inuyasha looked up to his brother. Jaken for some reason was walking silently behind his master, holding Ah-Un reins and looking longingly at the glistering water.

Five minutes later Miroku found himself sitting by the camp fire, watching over the cooking meal. Lord Sesshomaru was standing and glaring at the rest of their joined groups sitting or playing in the water. Jaken was dozing off on the edge of the water, Inuyasha was sitting on a rock near the children playing with a ball, Sango and Kagome were slowly swimming in circles, talking about something. Ah-Un was a bit away downstream, submerged up to his two chins.

"Lord Sesshomaru?" Miroku inquired. "Why won't you go into the river?"

"This Sesshomaru hates water," was the daiyoukai's reply. Miroku caught the sight of his hand stroking down his fluffy pelt. The monk remembered the various times he got a bit too close to Inuyasha's damp hair ad his signature, yet not very strong, wet dog smell. 'I suppose Lord Sesshomaru must take ages to dry his mokomoko and hair... And the scent must be so much stronger with him being full-blood...'

"You know, Lord Sesshomaru..." Miroku grinned at his sour companion. "If you don't enjoy the blessing of a cool bath in the summer time... Would you consider... Keeping an eye on the rabbits for me?"

And before the daiyoukai could answer Miroku was out of his upper robes and halfway to the water, calling Sango's name.

Lord Sesshomaru sighed, letting his hand stroke his fur. For a briefest of moments a spark of longing twinkled in his eye when he saw Inuyasha jumping off the rock into the cool water, splashing it and eliciting shrieks of the others.

He hated summer. With all his hate.

Chapter Text

"Kukuku!" laughed Naraku while standing in a small hut of a witch, who was looking at him with her big blue eyes and shaking her head. Naraku was holding a vial of white liquid in his hand.

"Kuku indeed," she muttered under her nose. Villains these days were nothing like in the days of her youth. None of the bad guys of the past would steep so low to use this potion to defeat their enemies. Well, the world was changing and the witch supposed it was just another sign how bad the progress was. 'Just look at him,' she thought. 'In his silly monkey pelt, with that ugly mask, he has indeed no taste, no taste at all.' "If you are ready to leave, lord Naraku..."

"Tell me again what the potion does and you'll be free of my presence, witch," Naraku promised.

"When you drink it you will fall asleep and a dream will come to you, a dream where your enemies will appear to tell you their greatest secrets, fears and weaknesses," she sighed, it was the third time she was reciting this. He had not only bad taste, but also bad memory.

"Alright then. Thank you for your help," Naraku said.

The witch sighed once more, this one a pain-filled sigh of resignation, when she saw a tentacle piercing her chest the next minute. She had foresaw she was going to die now, but seeing how the spider-hanyou did it was rather... Disappointing. Pierced by a miasma-filled tentacle? Not very creative. 'He didn't even ask what the catch is. Villains these days...'

Naraku let the witch fall to the floor before leaving her little hut in the forest and returning to his palace. He went to his bedchamber and downed the vial, then he went to his futon and pulled a blanket over himself. He sighed happily as he relaxed and drifted into sleep. 'Soon...'

In the dream he was sitting on a pillow under an old tree. He looked around and saw a forest, fresh and green, obscuring the landscape. But he wasn't there to admire the beauty of nature. He was there to learn how to defeat his enemies.

And they were approaching him, one by one, standing in front of him. He rubbed his hands gleefully as he looked at the people who dared to defy him. All looked really anxious, not knowing what he wanted to ask of them.

First was Inuyasha, the idiot hot-head half-breed mutt. He looked annoyed and defeated as he glared daggers at Naraku.

"Kukuku, confess, Inuyasha, what your weakness is," he ordered. Inuyasha growled.

"Ty popierdolony, w poprzek jebany dupku zawszony, zmieniam się w człowieka w noc nowiu," said the dog hanyou. Naraku blinked.

"What?" he inquired, not really sure what was going on. Inuyasha had said something, but in a language so odd, so unfamiliar, that the spider hanyou couldn't even comprehend how he had been able to make certain sounds.

"Chuj ci w oko, zgniły korniszonie, nie muszę się powtarzać. Ten sen tak nie działa," Inuyasha crossed his hands on his chest, a clear indication he wouldn't say anything more. Still, Naraku had no idea what he had said so far.

More than a bit annoyed the vile hanyou turned to Sesshomaru, his other arch enemy. This one was as indifferent as always, his face a stoic mask.

"What about you?"

"Nihil timeo," Sesshomaru replied, glaring at Naraku with disgust. "Ego protego quid mea est."

"Huh?" Sesshomaru's statement seemed important, even more because everyone else was looking at him in surprise. Naraku cursed under his breath, realizing that they probably could understand one another and him as well. Naraku glared at the bunch and pointed a finger at Miroku, the monk who had way too much spiritual power for a lecher like him.

"What about you?" he asked, hating the hint of desperation in his voice.

"J'ai peur de mourir avant que la malédiction ne soit levée et que ma mission ne soit terminée." Miroku said, glancing at his right hand. Naraku groaned and pointed at Sango, who stood next to the monk, her gaze full of sympathy as she put her hand on Miroku's shoulder.

"Mich? Meine Schwäche ist Liebe und Sorge für meinen Bruder und für meine Gefährten," Sango stated proudly, as if she got her strength from her weakness, which only confused and frustrated Naraku more.

"Aaargh!" he roared and turned to the two miko girls who were standing on both side of Inuyasha. Kagome was snickering behind her hand, while Inuyasha and Kikyou looked just pleasantly amused at the spider hanyou ire.

"Мне жаль, что вы не можете нас понять, но я также рад, что ваш план не сработает," Kagome said, pity in her voice. Then she took Inuyaha's hand, smiling softly at the furiosly blushing hanyou."Моя слабость заключается в том, что я обожаю без взаимности.

Inuyasha was obviously wanting to say something, but Kagome shook her head, silencing him and pointing to Kikyou, as if encouraging the undead miko to speak. Kikyou sighed.

"Mi volas trovi pacon kaj alporti la finon al la sankta juvelo kaj via vasta vivo," the undead miko said. "Sed mi ne oferos aliajn homojn por atingi ĉi tiun celon."

With a roar of utter rage Naraku jumped out of his bed.

"Curse you, polyglot witch!" he exclaimed, shaking his fists. He almost could hear the old bat laughing in hell.

Chapter Text

Kagome was sitting beside Inuyasha, happily reading her book and leaning against the hanyou. She pretended not to notice the glances her friends were sending her and Inuyasha.

The past month had been eventful. They had fought Naraku before he went into hiding again, they had collected some more jewel shards, they had a huge quarrel which ended in her going home and an irate hanyou following her. Nothing new. But this time Inuyasha had managed to keep her in the past, mostly because he had not shut his mouth in time and had confessed his feelings to her. Kagome had sat him twice before registering that and confessing her own love towards the stubborn boy.

Now they were enjoying this new stage of their relationship, no more denials and less misunderstandings. That doesn't mean they weren't bickering and they were very usually very shy around others, but their closest friends were seeing more and more gestures of affection between them those past few weeks.

Now they were staring at Kagome's neck and Inuyasha's cheeks.

"Keh," said Kagome's leaning surface, making her grin.

Suddenly Inuyasha tensed and Kagome looked up to find a familiar figure clad in white standing nearby. Sesshomaru approached the little camp calmly and didn't look away from his younger brother and his girlfriend.

"This one sees that you finally embraced your youkai heritage," said the daiyoukai. "This one must confess he was rather surprised you lacked the sign of your bloodline, but is pleased that you became strong enough to carry it. Still, you are no match to this one."

"Feh, you're just jealous I got so strong since i met Kagome," Inuyasha grinned and wrapped an arm around the said girl.

"This one won't take the bait, little brother. Is unbecoming for individuals of our stature to bicker."

"Oh, don't say this, lord Sesshomaru," Kagome giggled. "We bicker all the time."

"That's true," Sango smiled. The daiyoukai wasn't impressed.

"Your activities are of no concern to this one. When your pack is close to the Western Palace consider meeting me, little brother. Your rise in power won't be overlooked any day longer," with those words the daiyoukai walked away.

Did he just invite us to his palace?" asked stunned Miroku.

"Wow. Just... Wow," uttered Shippou, who had been hiding behind Sango and Kirara all the time.

"Feh. I feel almost guilty," murmured Inuyasha, but Kagome stroked the purple mark on his cheek.

"It's just a mark. If some decide to act more civil around you because of it I'm even happier that I made you have it," the miko said. "You grew so much stronger, you earned them."

"That's true," Sango gave a nod. "They would appear by themselves sooner or later, with your youki level..."

Inuyasha leaned in Kagome's touch, not arguing with his friends. It was so shocking to see that his brother, of all people, could act pretty civil around him. He even acknowledged his strength and his relationship with Kagome. Not mentioning the invitation to the West.

The group resumed their peaceful resting, talking lazily and enjoying the warmth of the afternoon. They knew soon Inuyasha was going to drag them down the road again. The marks were a recent thing and the rest of the gang still didn't ask about them more than the duo had told them after coming back from Kagome's time a couple of days prior.

They were collecting their things, packing for the second part of a long day of marching, when a different youkai came up to them. His approach was announced by Inuyasha's growl and Kagome's gasp. And the next second Kouga was standing by the miko, holding her hands.

"Hi there, Kagome!" he exclaimed. "How is my woman?"

Kagome froze, her smile a bit too wide to look natural. Inuyasha, instead of jumping in between them and barking at the intruder, walked up behind the miko and moved the collar of her blouse to reveal her left collar bone. Kagome blushed, but did nothing to stop him.

Kouga's eyes widened when he saw three little black paw marks, each with a kanji inside it.

"She's not your woman, wolf," said Inuyasha and let go of the fabric, covering back his name. He smirked and then pulled Kagome's hands out of Kouga's limp fingers.

"I'm sorry, Kouga, but I never said I was yours," said the miko, giving him an apologetic smile. "But I'll be always your friend."

"Uh... You let him mark you?" Kagome nodded. "Uh... Just... If he mistreats you just let me know, Kagome, and I'll kick his ass for ya."

"That won't be necessary, but thanks," Kagome gently stepped on Inuyasha's bare foot to silence his growl. Kouga looked at the couple for a moment and ran away without another word.

"Well, that was something new," said Sango.

"But I don't understand," Shippou jumped to Kagome's shoulder to sniff her neck. "Kagome doesn't smell like a mated female."

"Keh, that's because we didn't mate yet," Inuyasha folded his arms across his chest while Kagome blushed.

"So how come she already has your mark? Kagome?" Sango inquired, looking at her friends in confusion.

"It's.. It's the magic of tattoo," Kagome uttered from behind her hands which she used to cover her face.

"Yeah!" Inuyasha grinned. "We lost a bet to her crazy friends and had to get the tattoo things. Kagome said she always liked my youkai markings, so I got them..."

"And." Kagome decided to embarrass the hanyou for a change. "Inuyasha said the dog paws would look cute on me, so I went with doggie paws."

To her surprise Inuyasha didn't look embarrassed, despite the fact their friends were nodding and smirking at the explanation of the markings they had.

"Keh! Our mating will happen sooner or later anyway," the hanyou smirked. It took him a moment to notice Sango's furious blush, Shippou's stunned expression and Miroku's wide lecherous grin. He didn't dare to peer behind Kagome's hands to check out her reaction. "Uh..."

Chapter Text

It was a lovely day indeed, one full of soft sunlight, not too hot, with fresh breeze bringing the scent of hay from the outskirts of the village.

The gang was enjoying one of their rare break days. Kagome went to visit her family, Sango and Shippou had some time to take care of their gear, Miroku could meditate in peace, without an irate hanyou dragging him down the road by his leg

Speaking of the hanyou, where was he? Miroku opened one eye and looked around the shade of Kaede's hut. Kaede was there, preparing something in a mortar, Sango was next to her, mixing some powders carefully. Shippou was on the opposite side of the shadowed area, drawing something on a leaf. Miroku could even see Kagome walking down the path, her huge pack overstuffed as always.

But the lack of a hanyou in the picture was pretty obvious.

Kagome didn't look worried about Inuyasha missing when she came to join the gang, so Miroku resumed his meditating.

Until he felt a familiar youki brush against his senses When he opened his eyes now he saw Inuyasha walking towards them from the forest. Hr looked... Different somehow. There was something in his steps as he walked purposefully to join the group, who was now observing him.

It took Miroku a moment to simply watch the look of determination on Inuyasha's face. Then he noticed that there was someone following the hanyou and he frowned when he recognized the undead miko. It didn't look well - Kagome was already biting her bottom lip, her gaze guarded when she turned to face Inuyasha. For his part the hanyou appeared almost serene, especially in this kind of situation. Usually when Kikyou was around Inuyasha was even harder to deal with than usual, Kagome was usually getting silent and depressed, Sango was irritable and everyone else just felt uncomfortable.

And right now Inuyasha was leading her straight to them. What was he thinking? Shippou just ran away, preferring to be away from the woman made of clay. Miroku had to admit it he understood the child.

The greetings were less enthusiastic now, everyone watching Kikyou wearily. The undead miko stood near the edge of Kaede's herb garden and looked back at them with her calm eyes, giving them a nod of greeting as well. Everyone looked at Inuyasha, expecting to hear some explanations. The hanyou ignored them for a while and sat nearby, cross-legged as usual.

"Probably all of you wonder why I brought her," he said and when he got a few nods and affirmative hums he continued: "I finally came to a conclusion. It isn't fair to keep the two of you changing," he looked at Kikyou and Kagome. The former smiled when the latter bit her bottom lip even harder and looked down. "I decided it's high time for some choices to be made."

"Oh, yes!" exclaimed Sango excitedly and when she noticed a few surprised glances she shrugged sheepishly. "What? It's about time. So, Inuyasha, which one do you choose?"

Inuyasha chuckled. "You all will learn a secret of mine as well, so pay attention and don't even think about spilling it out in front of anyone."

"You know you can trust us," Kagome whispered.

"That's why I decided to tell you," he replied and was quiet for a moment, obviously mentally preparing for the big reveal. "So, Kagome says she accepts me as I am. Kikyou, on the other hand, wanted me to be a human man in order to be with her," both mikos nodded. "And for some time I really wanted to use the jewel and become a human man for her. Before I met Kagome and learned to accept who and what I am."

"I can take you to hell as a hanyou," offered Kikyou and winced, probably realizing it didn't sound well. Miroku couldn't stop himself from shaking his head. Meanwhile Inuyasha just looked at her sadly.

"So you would overlook me not being a human," he murmured. "But I ain't no man either."

The silence lasted entire two minutes before Miroku finally managed to speak.

"You... Are a girl?" he breathed out. The hanyou in front of them nodded. "But... How? You have a male name and..."

"Old man didn't have time to check my gender before naming me," Inuyasha shrugged. "And pretending to be a boy was more safe. Not that I was around many people, so I didn't have to hide it much before I met you lot."

"That explains why... Why you always bathed alone and didn't want Kagome to treat your wounds!" Sango pointed a finger at the hanyou. It shook a bit.

"Yup. And my fire rat covers my shape well," he added before turning his attention to the two mikos of his - hers - life. Kikyou was staring at him with a hand pressed to her mouth while Kagome was just blushing fiercely.

"I... I kissed you!" exclaimed Kikyou. "That's so wrong!"

"...I kissed you too," Kagome whispered, embarrassed, but not disgusted as the other girl. "Uh..."

"I thought you should know before one - if any - of you decide to tie yourself to me. I'm a girl and I can prove it, but I require Miroku to go the hell away first," Inuyasha growled at the monk, who nodded numbly.

"Doesn't Lord Sesshomaru know of this?" asked Kaede. "He can smell you, right?"

"Having a hanyou brother is slightly less embarrassing than having a hanyou sister," Inuyasha shrugged, never looking away from the two girls. Kikyou took a few calming breaths and straightened her back.

"I hereby release you from your vow. I won't go to hell with a girl," she said and marched away. Kagome gulped when she saw everyone turn her way.

"Uh... Will it sound wrong if I tell you that it doesn't matter that much to me?" she started carefully. "I mean you're still the same Inuyasha."

Kaede looked surprised by the future-born miko's words, but not as much as Sango, who looked embarrassed as well, for some reason. Miroku himself was less shocked by Kagome's statement than Inuyasha's reveal. After all he already knew the girl loved the... well, the other girl... with all her heart. And there were some people who would love someone no matter what gender they were.

"So... You're willing to... Stay with me?" Inuyasha sounded uncertain, but hopeful. Kagome gave him an awkward smile.

"I won't run away screaming I can't stand you," she assured. "I promised you I'll stay by your side, did I not?"

"But... You made this promise to a boy..." Inuyasha's ears drooped.

"I made it to you," Kagome sounded more sure of herself now. Kaede smiled at the two girls blushing and looking away from each other.

"But..." Sango shook her head. "How... For so long...?"

Miroku didn't continue the discussion with others, who were bombarding Inuyasha with questions. He had a sudden realization.

Carefully he reached a hand...

"Do it and die," he heard snarled in the vilest youkai voice he had ever heard from the hanyou.

Chapter Text

It was a lovely day. Kagome was walking from the forest back to the village, happily admiring the beauty of the area. She still couldn't believe she was back after those three years, despite the fact she was in the past for a couple of weeks ow. She loved this place. Of course, there were things she had to get used to and which she didn't enjoy, like cooking rice the old way, but in general she couldn't be happier.

Especially with the hanyou of her life walking beside her.

"Miroku went to the next village for some supplies," the inu hanyou was telling her, filling her in on where everyone of their friends were since she had went to the forest for the herbs before any of them woke up. "And Shippou's helping Sango training."

"And you came to fetch me, so you could dump the kids on Kaede, huh?" she smirked. He liked Sango and Miroku's children, as long as they weren't yanking at his ears.

"Keh! I wanted to make sure nothing ate you. The forest's still a dangerous place," Inuyasha looked away and stuffed his hands in his sleeves. Kagome smiled at him softly

Suddenly the hanyou stopped and turned back to the forest they had left a couple of minutes earlier

"What is it?" the miko peeked from behind his shoulder to see a small figure running out of the trees. It took one glance at the bushy tail to recognize Shippou,

"Kagome! Save me!" exclaimed the frightened kitsune. Oddly, Inuyasha didn't move to help the kid and defeat whatever was chasing him.

"Do something!" she pushed the hanyou forward.

"Kyaa!" at the same time Inuyasha stumbled a few steps towards the forest a feminine scream could be heard. A short line with two rocks on its ends flew out from the shadows and wrapped itself around Shippou's legs, causing him to fall. Kagome gasped when she saw the kitsune squirm in the bonds and quickly tearing the line to resume his frantic retreat, this time heading for the village and the safety of Kaede's hut.

That was when Kagome realized Inuyasha was covering behind her.

"Inu...?"

"Shhh!" he hissed, gripping her shoulders and peeking above her shoulder at the now silent forest line. "She could hear you!"

"She? Why didn't you help Shippou? We have to go save him" Kagome freed herself and started walking quickly after the kitsune.

"You don't get it?" Inuyasha grumbled, following her. "He's training with Sango."

"Huh?" Kagome looked at the nervous hanyou. "Why aren't you sparring with her? You always sparred with her in the past..."

"I did. After the first pregnancy I made the mistake of agreeing to train with her. Motherhood makes women ferocious." Inuyasha stated. "The kid was just stupid, agreeing to help her."

"...So you didn't flee the kids when you came sniffing after me..." Kagome mused aloud.

"This time I have a reason to continue living," Inuyasha looked down at her fondly and caused her to blush. "And the kid has to learn how to deal with exterminators anyway."

Chapter Text

Sango gasped when she saw what youkai was coming her way. It was crawling with predatory grace, taking its time in approaching the youkai exterminator. Its maws were open, showing its teeth - only a few of them were gracing its gums, but they looked new and sharp.

She hated to fight the Crawling Nightmare.

As it was approaching so slowly she had time to check on the others.

Kagome was using her bow to keep a youkai at bay. It was hard, because the little beast was much faster and more agile than the miko. The priestess called Inuyasha's name in the forest, desperation in her voice, when the youkai got a good grip on her bow and laughed mercilessly. Kagome gasped and called for her hanyou protector again, eliciting vile chuckles from all three youkai.

Miroku was further away, already losing his battle against a youkai, who talked the monk to the ground and was preparing to pounce.

Indeed, they really needed Inuyasha. Like - right now.

Suddenly Sango realized that paying too much attention to her companions and not observing the Crawling Nightmare was a huge mistake. She felt its limbs wrap around her, grab higher and higher up her leg. She reached to pry it off of her, but it bared its teeth at her, obviously intending to bite her.

"Oh, no!"

"Where's that hanyou?!" cried out Miroku, trying to fend off the youkai sitting on him and trying to reach his body with its paws.

"Inuyasha!" Kagome cried, letting go of her useless bow and running wobbly in the direction of the forest. She was no match to the youkai speed, but she still tried to flee. The youkai let out a cry of delight, seeing its prey retreating, then gave chase.

"No, no, no!" Miroku cried, wiggling under his opponent in futile attempt to get free. Sango looked down to the Nightmare. She couldn't help him, but she still tried to reach him, the youkai never letting go of her. She stumbled and fell on her stomach, the youkai immediately resuming crawling up her body, making noises of pleasure.

And then, when Kagome was almost to be caught, Sango caught a flash of red and silver. All the youkai paused in their actions, looking at Inuyasha standing proudly in between them.

"You pesky youkai!" he exclaimed, resting his hands on his hips. Water was dripping down his sleeves. "Come fight someone your own size!"

"There's no one our size!" retorted the youkai who had been chasing Kagome. It lost interest in the miko, currently safely hidden behind a bush. Inuyasha's ears twitched and the youkai, along with the one who had been attacking Miroku, started to approach him, looking for an opening to strike. Unluckily for Sango, her youkai wasn't that interested in a fight with the hanyou. It sat on her back and gurgled in victory. Miroku wasn't moving from his place.

Meanwhile Inuyasha crouched low, eyeing the two youkai who were circling him, each on one side of the inu hanyou. They were closing the gap between them, preparing to pounce. And then...

"Wind Scar!" roared the hanyou and shook himself violently, sending droplets of cold water in every direction. Aiki and Miki squealed, trying to shield themselves from the famous attack of the leader of the inutachi.

"Alas, Inuyasha came to save the day," Miroku commented when the hanyou proceeded to catch and tickle the two squealing girls. Kagome came out of her hiding.

"He always comes to save us all," she said and stroked her rounded belly.

"Yeah, yeah, can anyone pick Hiro off my back?" asked Sango from her spot on the ground.

"Mama!" exclaimed the toddler when Miroku separated him from his newest toy - his mother's ponytail. Inuyasha joined them, a giggling girl under each arm.

"Next time we're youkai," he said to the kids.

"Aw, but uncle, it's more fun this way!" protested Miki.

"Will Shippou be on our side when he comes from school?" asked Aiki.

"Of course," Kagome assured the girls and they stopped pouting. "You'll be the kitsunetachi."

Chapter Text

The two resident youkai of Kaede's village sat on a branches of a tree. It was an odd picture - a white inu and a red kitsune both perched on two close branches, looking at the village below. One could think taking to high ground would not be unusual for canine youkai, but those two couldn't care less what strangers would think upon seeing them.

"So... Dad?" Shippou glanced at his adoptive father a bit anxiously. Inuyasha seemed to size him with his burning gaze and it was pretty unnerving. The fox was trying really hard not to spill confessions about all his pranks and tricks, along with some apologies. But he had to be strong in face of Inuyasha's gaze, he had to be strong There were too many tricks he had learned lately and really wanted to try on him.

"Your mother found your... Friend list," Inuyasha said. The tone of his voice was calm, but Shippou gulped. Inuyasha never referred to Kagome as 'his mother', unless the said female had given him grief over something that was clearly - at least to Inuyasha - Shippou's fault. And now Inuyasha was going to dish out a punishment. Or worse - a lecture. 'Inari-sama,' the kitsune prayed silently, his tail fluffing out. 'Let him hit me on the head, please, let him h- Oh, shit.'

"She... She found it...?" he whispered, realizing what it meant. He shrieked. "Oi! Why did she go through my stuff?!"

"Because it looked like your room was the back end of Miroku's kazaana, dumbass," Inuyasha growled at his indignant squeak. The silence lingered like a drop of honey on a spoon. "So? Is there anything you want to tell your old man?"

"What?" Shippou barked, "I have many friends and I don't want to mess stuff up by mixing or forgetting something."

"Listen, son," Inuyasha sighed and ran a hand through his hair. "All's great, you're allowed to have many girl friends. But tell me, how are you going to explain why you need to keep notes which ones you kissed and promised to go on a date?"

Shippou glared at the hanyou, who just looked at him. The teen stuffed his hands in his sleeves and looked away. "Keh!"

"Don't keh me, young man!" Inuyasha made a good impression of his mate. "Let's play an oracle game," he added suddenly, gaining Shippou's attention again. "If you continue to live like this I see two things in your future."

"What things?" asked the curious kitsune.

"First - you'll get a necklace just like my beads. Second - you'll end up like Miroku and will have a bad reputation when you find a girl you actually want to mate, so she won't trust you," Inuyasha warned. Shippou shuddered.

""Women are like food," Inuyasha continued after a minute. Shippou blinked at him. Inuyasha nodded. "Yeah, just like food. Different kind of food. You are looking around for the one you can spend your life eating and never tire of it. But if you spoil other foods or break their hearts along the way no one will want them. Like when you throw grass in a stew or something. And the food will go through its life unwanted because you were a dick."

It took the kitsune a moment to solve this part of Inuyasha's lecture. Meanwhile they could hear Kagome calling from the direction of their home.

"Inuyasha! Ramen's ready!"

"Ha!" the hanyou perked up. "Ramen calls."

Shippou looked after his adoptive father who wasted no time in racing to the love of his life and his double-size bowl of noodles.

Chapter Text

She almost burst into giggles when she saw the window sliding silently open. She was wrapped in a pink blanket, curled on the bed in the corner of the room, only the top of her head sticking out from under it.

She observed the window basked in moonlight with a smirk on her lips. After it got opened she saw the light lingering on the pair of the cutest ears in the world, twitching on top of a head of silver hair which simply begged to be brushed. A blink of an eye and the red-clad boy was in the room, silent like a cat. She heard a faint sound of him inhaling deeply and sighing in contentment.

His face was shadowed, but she saw his eyes gleaming yellow in the darkness when he turned to look her way. Stealthily he made his way to the bed and the female under the blanket tensed. What was he going to do now?

She had never wondered what he was doing at night in this room, even when she had been aware that he had been visiting and staying here often at night. It had never crossed her mind that the white-haired boy was actually a youkai, even if a half. She had been listening to stories about wicked youkai for years and somehow in her mind the connection between this troubled teen and the mysterious, mischievous creatures, never came to her mind.

She didn't feel afraid, more like curious and a bit amused. After all, this was Inuyasha and she trusted him with everything she had.

It didn't even alarm her when she saw through her hone under the blanket, when he removed his sword from his obi and sat on the edge of the bed.

"Stupid wench," she heard his rough low whisper. "You annoying little human, you reckless, crazy girl," somehow, the tone of his voice wasn't matching the insults, it was uncharacteristically soft and affectionate. It made her grin widely under her blanket.

The boy slid off of the bed to sit on the floor, his back towards the bed, his sword in his lap. She had the perfect view of his ears now and she battled her urge to pet them with all her might. After all, those ears weren't hers, even if she suspected she could get away with some rubbing, like the first time she bad seen him.

"I love you, wench." she heard his whisper, barely audible, and she almost gasped at the confession of love. It wasn't like she didn't know it already, but hearing it, spoken so softly, so sincerely... It made her heart flat.

And then she saw the adorable ears twitch and swivel in the direction of the doorway. The door cracked and she could hear people whispering behind it. Inuyasha tensed.

"Ayumi, you go help Eri with the glasses and coca," a sweet voice drifted through the darkness. "Yuka, that's not the bathroom, it's Souta's room!"

"Uh, sorry!" came an embarrassed voice among giggles of the rest.

"Okay, it's the next door. I'll just go and get the movie from my room. Good thing I'm a sneaky wench, so I won't wake up mom..." the door opened wider and Kagome slid in, carefully shuffling her way to a shelf, browsing through it and grasping a DVD. Then she glanced in the direction of the bed and noticed the hanyou sitting there. "Oh, hi, Inuyasha. The girls are staying overnight, so I switched bedrooms with mon, 'cause she has a huge TV in her room. You can stay here, but don't let them see you, ok?"

"F-feh," Inuyasha whispered back. When the girl went away the boy let out a sigh of relief. "Good thing I didn't try to kiss her or anything..."

"I think next time you should," commented the highly amused, friendly voice from behind him.

Chapter Text

The leader of the pack looked around the den, pretty surprised. It wasn't normal for the den to look so clean and in order. He had six daughters, there were always toys and clothes laying around, no matter how hard his mate was scolding their offspring.

But now the den was in a neat order, which was a bit anxiety-inspiring. For a moment he was thinking if he could goad his youngest - three years old - girl to throw some of her toys across the room. The lengths the females had went to put the den in the order just for this one day made him a bit jealous, because they never had done it for him. He just shook his head and looked at all seven of his women. They were finishing preparing the table in the corner of the den. The table was another thing that came to his den after the mating - his beloved lady did want them to enjoy meals around it. With a hint of annoyance he realized every single one of them had her hair done and was wearing her best clothes.

'As if the guest was coming to see all of them, not only Tohru. He doesn't care for the rest, don't they know that?' He sighed and frowned, thinking about the boy he was about to meet for the first time in his life. He didn't like the idea of his girls having suitors or admirers, but it was a rule of life, he had to let them find their mates. And all of them were pretty, strong girls, true gifts from the heavans. Still, he was going to test the lad to make sure he was worthy of his precious daughter. 'Hell, he isn't worthy!' He growled and saw his oldest girl approach him. She looked collected and determined.

"Dad," she said. "Stop growling. And be civil when he comes, okay? I really want you two to get along."

"He's a sweet boy," his mate piped in. "You really should be home more often, dear, he visited us already twice and you always were away."

"Because you were inviting him when I was away!" he glared at her and she smiled innocently.

"Oh, don't be so grumpy. It's a happy day, you're going to meet Tohru's future mate," she teased and he growled.

"He first has to go through me!" he hissed. The females just giggled at him. He was the leader, he could prevent the mating if he wanted, but he knew the females of his family would give him hell if he did that without a good reason. Aki, the youngest, called from her spot by the entrance to the den.

"He's coming!" And just like that Tohru was gone, obviously to meet the boy, followed by the flock of girls. He straightened his clothes and went after them at a much slower pace. He was the male of the family, he had to appear regal and not anxious and annoyed at the guest.

"Tohru!" called a happy male voice. It sounded rough and strong. When the not-too-happy father took a tentative sniff he could smell a canine. 'At least he's not a cat,' he thought.

He froze when he saw the youth handing flowers to each of his women, starting with his mate and then Aki, following their age order until he reached Tohru. He felt his youki rise when he saw the boy nuzzle her cheek affectionately and put a red chrysanthemum behind her pointed ear. The girl giggled and gave him a nuzzle of her own.

The boy was tall and lean. He was moving with the grace of a predator, someone who was used to fighting. But there was no anxiety in his body language, just warmth, kindness and a cocky confidence. His hair was long and well-kept, his ears alert to every noise, turning this way and that. At the boy's hip hung a katana which looked like a less battered replica of a sword the pack leader had once been fighting against.

"You!" the father roared. Everyone froze and looked at him, the girls moving to the sides when they saw their father practically running towards them. The boy's golden eyes looked straight into his, challenging him as the boy wrapped an arm around Tohru's waist. The girl didn't move away from him, just glared at her father. He growled and pointed a finger at the white-haired, dog-eared youth in red and green kimono.

"You're his son!"

"Feh," the boy shrugged. "My old man told me to say hi from him to you, old man," he was obviously unafraid. The older male readied himself to jump and kick the youth's behind.

"You...!"

"Kouga!" his mate grabbed him by his arm, digging her claws in his skin. "Behave!"

"But, Ayame, he's his son! I don't-"

"So what? Tohru loves him and they'll be mates soon, so get used to seeing him around," their daughters led the boy inside the den, happily talking to him and ignoring their father. Kouga saw the son of the inu-hanyou look back over his shoulder at him and pulling his daughter closer to his side before the couple went inside. The annoying golden eyes held amusement and smug confidence in their depths. They were just like the eyes he had hated all those years ago and still didn't like.

"Inuyasha!" the wolf leader roared.

Far, far away, in a hut in Kaede's village, a single white ear twitched and a smirk spread across one smug hanyou's lips.

"Touga's at Kouga's again," Inuyasha informed his wife and mate.

"Ah, that's nice. I hope Tohru will come over for a dinner again soon," Kagome replied, focused on her task of stirring their food. "Stop lazing around and go hunt for the kids, the soup's almost ready."

Chapter Text

Kagome woke up and frowned. Usually Inuyasha would be waking her up at dawn, but now it was long after that time and the hanyou wasn't poking her sleeping bag to get her attention and make her make him ramen. The rest of the gang was waking up at their own too.

Inuyasha was missing, that was the reason. The group, quite surprised at this, ate breakfast and collected their things, so they'd be ready when he returned. The group was using the free time to talk and do some minor repairs to their belongings.

Suddenly, there was a movement in the bushes around their camp and before anyone could do anything a big white akita inu jumped out of the forest into the meadow holding their camp. Everyone gasped at the sight of the animal, his white fur matted and covered in dirt. The dog looked around and wagged his tail, looking unsure, but friendly.

"Inu... Inuyasha?" Kagome breathed out. The dog looked her way and wagged his tail more.

"What happened to you?" asked Sango, bewildered. Miroku stood up carefully and approached the dog, who shied away and growled in warning. The monk took a step back. Kagome offered the dog the piece of fish that had been left for him. It took the dog a few minutes of watching the humans, but finally he came closer and started eating. Shippou sighed, knowing that now he couldn't claim the leftover fish for himself.

"I'm sure he can be turned back," Miroku said quietly, so not to scare or annoy the dog. "We just must bring him to Kaede."

Kagome looked down at the dog, who was devouring his meal with gusto. 'Poor Inuyasha...'

They spent a whole day walking in the direction of Kaede's village. Inuyasha seemed to be unaware of his past self, acting just like a dog. He was following Kagome, but after a couple of hours got less wary of others too. He still didn't go close to Miroku when the monk was holding his staff, but otherwise was glad to just walk beside Kagome or run ahead. He had ever played chase with Shippou, his tongue hanging out of his mouth in a doggy smile. Kagome was looking at him fondly. She hoped that Kaede could lift the curse and then they could learn how he got changed into a dog, but for now she was just glad he was happy and relaxed.

Near the sunset they reached the village. Inuyasha wasn't that happy to go close to it, but Kagome managed to bribe him with pieces of dried meat. Slowly, the white akita got to Kaede's garden and the old miko went to examine him. The group was watching her anxiously as the priestess was observing their canine friend, who was just sitting on the ground, tilting his head in curiosity. Then Kaede turned to them and sighed.

"Please, tell us that you know how to turn him back?" Kagome pleaded.

"I'm afraid..." Kaede started.

"Oi! You bunch of morons, why did ya go back to the village without me!?"

"..That it isn't Inuyasha," finished Kaede while the said hanyou jumped out of the nearest tree, obviously pissed.

"What were you lot thinking! We have shards to find!" barked Inuyasha.

"I almost regret he wasn't cursed," muttered Shippou.

Chapter Text

Kagome woke up when she felt her blanket slide down her body. She sleepily reached for it, tried to pull it over her shoulder. But it didn't go up, so after a few tugs the miko opened her eyes to scan the little bedroom. After a year of living in the hut with Inuyasha she knew this place like the palm of her hand and didn't need much light to determine what each shadow and shape was.

In the dim light of the embers in the fire pit she could see a figure seated by her futon, a pair of glittering yellow eyes looking straight at her. She gasped, but relaxed when she saw the shadow of two triangular ears on top of the figure's head. Only one person had dog ears and yellow eyes. And there couldn't be no mistake about the paleness of his wild mane of hair.

"Inuyasha," she breathed out. "You scared me! Where were you?! I've been waiting for you."

The figure moved closer and nuzzled her chin in apology. "Miroku had a problem. Needed my help."

This wasn't all the information she get from him. One sniff was enough to suspect that Miroku's problem was a jug of sake he needed a friend to help him emptying.

"You're drunk," she accused.

"Not drunk, just relaxed," he gave her a toothy grin. "All warm and fuzzy inside."

"Speaking of warm, give me back my blanket and come to sleep," Kagome said, shaking her head. Inuyasha was probably right, he didn't appear that drunk and he was still using entire sentences. She could just hope Miroku wasn't in a worse shape, Sango and the kids wouldn't have mercy on him.

"I have one more thing to do," Inuyasha said and pulled her blanket down even more, looking at her sleeping yukata. "I have to patrol my forest."

"What, now? In the middle of the night?" the miko frowned. Something was off, why was he looking at her like she was a cup of ramen?

"The night's the best time," he assured her. "Not that I wouldn't like to do it during the day... I mean - I'd like to patrol it now, if you let me."

"Uh, sure, if you feel like it..." Kagome stared at her mate in confusion. He had never asked her for her permission to go on a patrol. Inuyasha took advantage of her puzzlement and untied her obi. She came back to reality when she felt the cool air hit her skin.

"Inu? What are you doing?" she asked, shivering when he leaned in and placed a couple of gentle kisses along her jawline. "You were going on a patrol? Of your forest?" she didn't complain, even if his breath smelled a bit of sake, she was just really unsure what he had in mind. His actions weren't the same with his words.

"I'm going to," he replied, his warm breath tickling her collarbone. "Patrol my forest. The wild forest of Inuyasha... Where no one dares to step... Only I can go there, no other man... There's a hidden well there... And when I go into the well time stops... And there's a hidden divine pearl there too, one that grants my greatest desire..." Kagome gasped when she felt his hands on her, caressing her sides. It was hard to focus on his words instead of the warmth of his hands and lips on her skin.

"But... Your forest is out there..." she pointed out. He didn't make sense, the well was sealed and the sacred jewel was gone for years... One of his hands sneaked to the spot where her legs connected.

"It's right here," he stated and kissed her. The last coherent thought in Kagome's mind was to make sure Miroku got another jug of sake some time soon.

Chapter Text

While Inuyasha reached his home and his wife's futon to make sure his forest was thoroughly patrolled, another man was carefully nearing a very familiar hut. He was leaning on his staff, which had its famous golden rings wrapped in a piece of cloth so not to make noise. He wasn't that drunk - after all, they had drank only a jug of sake. They had wanted to relax in the shade of the Sacred Tree, enjoying the evening after a big work. The holy - and a bit tipsy - man smiled when he thought about his talk with his dog-eared friend, one about various ways to describe the fine art of lovemaking and things used in this art. Well, it had been fun when it had lasted, the hanyou after a year of marriage was as easy to embarrass as the day they had met. He looked at the hut in front of him and sighed.

.

She opened one eye as soon as she heard that someone entered the hut. She looked in the darkness at the man standing on the beaten dirt before the raised floor.

"You're drunk?" she inquired, recognizing his aura and the staff he was leaning on.

"Not very much, but yes, I drank a few cups of a delicious sake." His reply was a half-joke. She practically could sense his pleading eyes on herself.

"Try to be quiet, the children are sleeping," she said and thought for a minute. "A blanket is on one of the boxes under the floor. You can sleep there."

"Thank you, oh, gracious lady," he bowed and found the blanket where it was supposed to be. Without answering she returned to sleep, hearing him make himself comfortable near the door.

.

Miroku woke up to sounds of breakfast being prepared. When he opened his eyes he saw a pair of children looking down at him from the edge of the raised floor.

"Miroku? What are you doing here?" asked Shippou in bewilderment.

"Uh."

"Did you mistake your hut with ours, monk Miroku?" inquired Rin. Miroku licked his dry lips. He didn't have a hangover, but he sure wanted something to drink.

"Children, cease your teasing of the monk," said Kaede from her usual spot by the fire. "You know that when he drinks Sango doesn't let him into their home. I took pity on him when he came here last night. Tea?"

She asked the slowly rising man. Miroku could feel all his bones ache from sleeping on the dirt and his head was aching a bit too.

"That would be wonderful," he rasped out. 'I wonder if Inuyasha had a better night.. Knowing lady Kagome's temper he probably spent the night on the roof...'

Not too far away someone buried under a pile of blankets and a naked miko sneezed quietly. The woman on his chest didn't even stir, which wasn't surprising after all the patrol runs they had had the previous night.

"Stupid monk and his stupid sake," murmured Inuyasha and hugged his napping wife to his chest lovingly.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha glared at his young wife in her miko attire. She gave him a sweet smile, one that could melt his scowl. He sighed and reached a hand to adjust the bow slung over her shoulder.

"I'll be fine," she assured him and nuzzled his jaw. The hanyou growled softly and kissed her cheek before stepping back, unwilling to indulge in any other sign of affection in front of the humans present.

Meanwhile nearby another couple was looking at each other with fond tenderness. Sango smiled at her husband and reached her hands towards the baby boy he was holding to stroke his chubby cheeks. Then she reached up to hold her husband's face and tug it down, so she could press a chaste kiss to his lips. He sighed when they parted.

"Be careful," he whispered.

"I won't let my guard down," she promised him and pinched his cheeks. "Behave while I'm gone."

"I may look at other women, but this man is only for you," he said with a mischievous smirk. She pretended to look at him sternly, but was still smiling.

"Better be, because when we come back home I expect you to wait for me in our hut, with kids fast asleep."

"I promise Inuyasha and I will do our best to keep the hut standing while you're gone."

Sango gave a nod of understanding. She knew that since Inuyasha would be free to roam during their absence he would be staying at her home, making sure the twins won't tie their father up and run away.

"Okay, let's be on our way if we want to reach our destination before nightfall," Kagome said cheerfully. The two males looked after their wives as they walked out of the village. Inuyasha scowled deeply, obviously wanting to follow, but knowing it'd cause Kagome's ire.

"Let's save Kaede from the twins," Miroku sighed and laid a hand on his friend's shoulder. "They'll be fine and they deserve a day away from their duties at the village. You patrolled that part of the forest, it's safe."

"I know, you're right," Inuyasha didn't like to agree with the monk, but he was right. They were the strongest females there could be and they really deserved some girl time at this special hot spring.

Chapter Text

Fang

Totosai heard something outside and carefully peered through the door of his humble dwelling. No angry customers demanding crazy blades, no crazy customers demanding weapons of mass destruction... Not even a sign of Inuyasha bringing Tessaiga for a check up.

 

"Hello?" Totosai looked down and spotted a tiny figure standing before him. It was a kitsune boy, his bushy tail and ponytail orange like flames, green eyes sparkling with home and excitement.

"Hello," said Totosai, a bit unsure what to do with the kid. He wasn't a kid person and he was old enough to not remember his own childhood.

"Um, I'm Shippou." said the boy. Totosai scratched his head. "Inuyasha's kid," the boy added after a minute, since the old smith was still clueless.

"Ah! That Inuyasha, did he break his beautiful sword again?"

"What? No!" Shippou shook his head.

"So, why are you here?" Totosai tilted his head to the side. The boy lifted his hand to show him what he held in his closed fist.

"Would you make a sword for me?" asked the kitsune hopefully, presenting proudly his missing tooth. "I can catch fish for you as a payment!" he added, hoping to convince the smith.

Totosai sighed. Somehow he just knew Inuyasha was behind the boy's request.

One thing was for sure - he really would like to eat some fish.

Chapter Text

It was a sunny spring day, the forest was full of blooming plants and the wind was rustling in the leaves of the trees. The serene peacefulness of the land was lulling everyone into the state of pleased laziness and admiration for the nature.

In the middle of a meadow a girl was climbing up an old, dry well.

The girl was valiantly making her way up, clinging to vines and roots she could grab onto. Finally she heaved herself over the edge of the well and sat on the warm grass covering the meadow. She took a few breaths and stood up to look at the forest around her. Wonder and confusion were plain on her little face.

The girl then started to walk in the direction of a tree which was towering over the whole forest. When she managed to get to the wide trunk of the tree she instantly spotted a boy standing under it, seemingly pinned to it by an arrow. It was located under his arm and was a bit crooked. The girl walked to the boy and without hesitation pulled the arrow from under his arm. When he lifted his head she wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed his cheek.

"Eww, Nanami!" the boy pushed the girl away and wiped his cheek on his sleeve.

"This is how mom and dad met," Nanami ignored her brother in favor of a trio of people who had been walking behind her. There was a tall man with white hair and a smirk on his lips. Holding his hand stood a small girl with a broad smile on her face. The other hand of the girl was securely in the grip of a woman clad in miko robes.

"Well, it was a little different," the miko laughed at the pair, who still stood under the tree. Touga, who was ten, looked just like tiny version of his father, Nanami was similar to her in looks and seemed to inherit the Higurashi' playfulness. "I recall rubbing his ears before pulling the arrow out."

"No!" Touga covered the top of his head and jumped away from his sister before she could grab his ears. Little Eri giggled and clapped her hands when her parents let go of them

"Ears!" she ecvlaimed and giggled again when Inuyasha and Kagome both grabbed an ear of hers and rubbed gently. The older kids looked at her happy face with amusement and a hint of envy, but the latter didn't last long, since their parents went to pet their ears next

"Happy anniversary, mom and dad." they said while leaning their heads in their parents' hands.

Chapter Text

He wasn't a courageous person. Not for him were heroic deeds and battles won and lost. Even if he had physical strength and stature fighting was the opposite of his nature. He had no stubbornness, he had patience. He had no confidence, no courage - even to just dream.

Until he came, the fierce. brash, courageous one, leading the most pure, most accepting, most beautiful woman in the world. She gave him the gift of friendship, he have him the gift of dreams.

After their departure he had his first dream. It wasn't for the girl, although she was fair and sweet, for she was also impatient and fiery, frightening him almost as often as soothing him with her temperamental demeanor. Her companion was just like her, fair in body, kind in spirit, fierce in battle and with caring heart.

No, he didn't dream of her - or any other woman, for he had no love for them. He dreamed of the land at peace, fields blooming, bearing fruits trees swaying gently on the wind. He dreamed of a land where no fear, no prejudice, no violence dwelt, of a realm where he could watch things grow, where he could stand tall, proud of himself, where he was walking in sunlight between other people, no shame, no fear weighting his heart down. He dreamed of a land where children were playing in the sweet smelling grass - many of them had dog ears or looked like him, for he haven't seen any other hanyou and couldn't imagine how they could look. The different children weren't chased away, just like he they were accepted and respected in this dream land of his.

The dream of such a different world was so strange, scaring.

But finally he had the courage to dream it.

Chapter Text

All Sango could remember was the rush of biting cold air as she fell from Kara's back into the ice-cold water of the sea and the shattering force of hitting the water.

Now she felt like she was floating in the cold water, unable to move her tired, half-frozen muscles, unable to get warmer or stop the shivers running down her body.

In the numb haze of pain and cold she could hear voices drifting closer and further away. She knew they were familiar, but she could put any faces or names to them.

"-ango! San-!"

"Wrap my... -bag around her, quick!"

"Kirara!"

Dark silence lasted for a while, she didn't know how long.

"What..."

"...Fell to the wat-"

"-Gome, child... we need to warm her..."

"Can we help?"

Again, some time passed. She could feel slightly less cold and she was in less pain, but she couldn't move or open her eyes. She could feel a heavy weight of blankets over her body and gentle hands feeding her some stuff.

When she almost surfaced again she heard the voices but now she was able to determine who was speaking.

"It's no use," said Kaede, her voice tired.

"We must save her!" Miroku argued. "Can't you think about any other cure?"

"I did all I could," she replied sadly.

"I'll go... my time... bring some medicine," Kagome suggested.

Sago smiled inwardly at her friends. She just hoped she could get warmer again.

"Do... think... help?" worried Miroku.

"I have... idea... future..." Kaede's voice was waving, as if she was moving closer and away from Sango. The exterminator tried to focus on staying aware of the voices, unwilling to succumb to the darkness again.

"I think... -yasha... the l- potion."

'What's a l-potiion?' wondered Sango.

"Keh... it."

Sango opened her eyes after some time passed. She finally shook off the visions and the terrible coughing fits which came over her not long after the last bit of conversation she had heard. She felt so wonderfully warm, her muscles and lungs didn't ache, her head was clear.

She opened her eyes and took a deep breath of aromatic air in Kaede's hut, smelling all the herbs hanging from the ceiling.

"Sango!" Miroku leaned over her and at the same moment her eyes rested upon his smile of relief Sango realized how much she loved life, how much she loved this man.

"...Beloved..." she wasn't sure she actually said this word, or if she just thought it, but Miroku grabbed her hand and squeezed it gently.

'...L-Potion...'

"My love... She's awake!" Miroku said to the rest of their friends as they crowded behind him. Inuyasha crossed his arms.

"Feh, told ya the potion will work!" Shippou was sitting on his shoulder, chewing on a piece of liver held in his little hand.

"I guess we don't have to use the modern medicine." Kagome's smile was a bit forced. "Still, the potion..."

"...Potion," Sango whispered. She still felt weak, but it was not the overwhelming numbness. Suddenly she realized that, yes, she called Miroku 'beloved' out loud And with others listening! It was true, but she wouldn't ever say that!

"Love Potion!" she exclaimed, blushing fiercely and pulling her hand from Miroku's grasp to cover her mouth. "You fed me love potion! I would never..."

Miroku's surprised expression at her exclamation changed to amusement. Kaede coughed and smiled while Kagome gave Sango a strange look. Inuyasha shook his head.

"Feh!"

"You wish it was love potion," Kagome muttered, more to herself. Shippou just giggled as he jumped to a bowl of cut liver pieces to pic another leftover healing ingredient.

Chapter Text

Kouga left his pack brothers, Kagome, Shippou and the mutt in the secluded spot just beside the sacred barrier surrounding the mountain. He wasn't fully healed yet, but he needed some alone time so he could think.

The vision of his woman pressing her face against the mutt and frantically asking if he was alright came to his mind unbidden. He growled and kicked a rock, since Inuyasha was too far to reach and he didn't fee like looking at the smug mutt.

He had to be realistic and honest with himself - his woman wasn't really interested in a lasting relationship. She seemed to be okay with brief meetings and some flowers. A friendship instead of his eternal, true love.

Now, when he was thinking about it, he didn't even know humans could experience love the way youkai could. Probably not, they were so weak.

Kouga sighed and decided that for the benefit of his pack and his own heart he should stop thinking about Kagome this way. He could rationalize with his heart.

Besides, it wasn't like he had to stick to her. He had females swooning over him, unlike Inuyasha who was a loser. He, Kouga, was a real pro - strong, cunning, handsome, a true alpha male.

For example Ayame. The girl was insisting to call him her fiancee. She was the heiress of a powerful, wealthy tribe, a pure-blooded youkai of royal descent. She'd give him power and many warriors to lead. And many pups, since her line was known for their fertility. She wasn't too hard to look at, too, which was always a nice bonus.

Yeah, he could go and try to build a relationship with Ayame. In contrast to Kagome she was ready to bear his pups and was more than willing to go with him to his den. She was the second best candidate for his mate.

As Kouga was thinking he was slowly making his way through a thick forest. He could hear a waterfall on a river nearby. Various scents of the forest and animals dwelling in it filled his nose, along with the lingering scent of graveyard soil. And a scent of a certain she-wolf.

'Ayame? What's she doing here?' The surprised wolf youkai left his path, following the scent of his soon-to-be love interest. He was stealthily making his way through the bushes and trees when he heard Ayame's laughter. Frowning at the mirthful sound he looked ahead and saw a meadow filled with sunlight, tall grass and colorful flowers.

In the middle of the glade stood a man in a white clothing, black hair braided in a thick rope falling over his shoulders and down back all the way to his butt. He was holding a giggling Ayame by her waist above his head.

"Bright Eyes!" Ayame greeted the man when he put her on her feet. Koga blinked at the nickname and an affectionate, excited tone of her voice.

"Hey, Red Locks," the man bent his head down and kissed her deeply. Kouga, crouching behind a bush, almost lost his balance and fell to the forest floor, his eyes getting unusually huge.

He observed the pair sitting down, Ayame leaning against the man. Only now Kouga noticed a huge weapon laying nearby.

"So, what's up, lovely?" the man asked, running a hand through her hair and tugging at her ponytail. "I heard you're running after a guy and it isn't me..."

"Oh, Ban," she looked up at him with a small pout. "You know, after you went away to become a famous mercenary and warrior worthy of a Northern Wolves princess and then dying I felt so sad and alone. I didn't know what to do without you."

The human man hugged Ayame and she continued.

"So, when my grandfather reminded me about a decently strong and bearing similar to your features wolf male I decided to give it a try. You know, Kouga was always my second best choice for a mate after you. But since you're back I can just ditch the ungrateful cur, who pins after a girl who doesn't love him."

"His loss. So... You want me?" he inquired and got tackled to the ground, the she-wolf sitting on his stomach and kissing him passionately.

"Just survive this stupid mission you got from your payer and we can go to my den and be together," she replied. The male smirked up at her and rubbed her sides.

"I like this plan," he said while the female above him went to undo his clothing. "i see you have some plans for the meantime?"

Kouga couldn't watch it anymore, he fled his bush ad went back to his pack brothers and Kagome, more gloomy than before, biting his bottom lip and balling his fists in anger.

But, he realized it now, he couldn't be angry at Ayame. After all, she just did what he would do, she choose her first best.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was laying on his favorite branch, enjoying the peace and quiet. These days he knew to relax when he had a chance. The pup's teeth were out, but after the horror of a wailing baby and exhausted mate the hanyou needed a few days to realize no one was going to start bawling close to his ears.

He loved his family, his blessing from the heavens. Even when they were bawling. Right now both Kagome and their little one were sleeping, curled on a futon inside their hut by the forest. Inuyasha's tree was near the hut, so he could watch over them and the village and protect his domain from any youkai.

Speaking of youkai - one was approaching Inuyasha's village and the hanyou scowled when he recognized who was nearing his location. It was no one else than the famous daiyoukai, his stuck up brother. Inuyasha was surprised to see the white-clad lord walking through the forest in his direction, Sesshomaru had visited Rin the previous day.

"This one wishes to speak to you," came from under Inuyasha's tree a few minutes later. The hanyou glanced at the full youkai and sighed before jumping to stand beside him.

"What do you want?" his arms immediately crossed in front of his chest. Sesshomaru looked indifferent as always, but for some reason he also looked... almost troubled and lost.

"It became known to this one that a boy of the pack of your beta female is courting Rin."

It took Inuyasha a moment to realize what he was talking about. His human companions weren't aware of the fact they were his pack in youkai law, nor that according to this law their families were linked to him as well. In a way he was responsible for them.

"Kohaku? Yeah, he started to come visit more often lately and he always has something for Rin," he shrugged. "But I'm not sure he's actually courting her. Humans give presents to their friends outside their packs and stuff, you know."

"The aforementioned boy was with Rin on a walk yesterday," Inuyasha's older brother threw a new tidbit of information at him. "This one suspects it's more than just an alliance."

"It's called friendship and you know what it is."

"They held hands when this one saw them."

"Uh... Okay... So, what's the problem? He's strong and if she likes him let them be together," Inuyasha shrugged. "If it's something more than a crush they'll come to you for a blessing sooner or later. You can give the kid some tasks to perform to prove he's worthy."

"Hm," Sesshomaru sounded almost surprised. "That's all?"

"What do you mean: that's all?" Inuyasha tilted his head. "You can go and try to scare him away or kill him, but expect a stink pellet to be thrown your way, and by Rin, mark my words. Believe me, it's not worth trying to get between them."

"How do you know?" Sesshomaru raised an eyebrow. Inuyasha had spoken with authority and finality that weren't often appearing in his speech.

"I spent three days stuck to a damn statue when Shippou was courting Souten."

"Ah, I see," Sesshomaru gave a small nod. He had heard about the kitsune and thunder youkai mating a few months ago, it made sense that the pair had to get the blessing of the alpha of the kitsune's pack. "So, this one has to step aside and let the exterminator court his ward?"

"Yeah, as long as Rin wants him to," Inuyasha nodded. "See? Problem solved and you don't have to do anything. Isn't that great?"

"Hm," the daiyoukai allowed himself to shrug as a response to his brother's smirk. It was amazing how his temperamental brother was efficient at finding ways to laze around and take naps in the trees. "This one shall take you advice into consideration."

"You better," the hanyou fixed him with a glare. "And since this talk's over you better get lost or come for dinner." Sesshomaru looked at his brother, quite surprised at the invitation. Inuyasha smirked. If Kohaku was going to marry Rin the packs of the two brothers would have another connection "Be warned, my pup's going to pull your hair all the time. And probably try to chew on your mokomoko."

For some reason, despite the warning, the daiyoukai followed the hanyou towards the hut where he could hear the miko starting preparing the meal.

Chapter Text

Play Boy

It was a pretty lazy evening. They had slain a youkai in a village, ensuring a dinner and a bed for everyone in their team. It had been a team effort and the dying oni had it in itself to share all it's otherworldly smelly internal organs between the whole groups, showering them with rain or bits and pieces after exploding upon being hit by one of Kagome's arrows.

The grateful villagers had had no problem preparing them baths. Actually, he had been pretty sure they'd be cross if any of the gang refused to wash away the goo.

Anyway, after a firm scrub and a nice soak in a tub he felt much better. Being fresh and not smelly was always on the top of his list of priorities and he was blessed by having friends who appreciated cleanness as well.

That was probably why he was the first one to leave the little room designed for individual bathing. The villagers were pretty odd in their custom of not sharing baths even with members of the same gander. But he wasn't one to complain, he was clean. He looked around the big room that led to various rooms with small tubs for bathing. It was a dressing room where one could sneak behind a screen and take off their clothing before going into the bath.

To his pleasure he saw that their clothes were waiting for them, already cleaned and dry. They were put in neat stacks near the weapons the gang left in this room. There was a pile of Sango's various weapons beside the huge boomerang and wakizashi, the Tessaiga, Kagome's bow and quiver - everything.

He smiled when an idea came to his mind when he looked at all the various weapons. Feeling mischievous he quickly pulled on his pants and kosode, finishing the look by putting on the red fire rat robe. Smirking like a wicked youkai he grabbed the Tessaiga and unsheathed the ancient blade. It didn't transform, but he didn't hope it would.

"Ha!" he swung the katana in the air, mindful of the walls and the ceiling. "I'm the mighty Inuyasha! Fear my huge sword! Feh!"

And just as he turned around in another wide sweep, he realized he had an audience. Inuyasha was standing there in a white bath robe identical to the ones the rest of them had gotten from the villagers upon going to the bath. Kagome and Sango stood to the left of the stunned hanyou, gaping at the man frozen in a battle stance.

"Uh..." Miroku gave them an awkward, sheepish smile and scratched the back of his head. "I just always wanted to see how it is to play around with the Tessaiga?" he confessed.

Five minutes later Shippou left his bath to find the adults in the dressing room. Miroku stood with Tessaiga casually resting on his right shoulder while Inuyasha was trying to keep an arrow on the bowstring of Kagome's bow while laughing at Sango, who was leaning on Miroku's staff over Kagome, who was almost squished under the Hiraikotsu. All of them were uttering lines like: "I'm Miroku and this is my long staff, I'm not compensating for anything!" or "I'm a great miko, just give me a minute to figure it out!" and in Kagome's case: "Goodness, Inuyasha, help me lift the Hiraikotsu or I'll throw a stink pellet at you!" Everyone was laughing and seemed to be in a good, relaxed mood.

"Adults," Shippou shook his head at their antics. "They can be so childish."

Chapter Text

Kagome sighed as she exited the well. It was much easier to climb a rope ladder than vines and roots. She adjusted her backpack and started to walk towards the village, surprised that no one was greeting her.

Usually Inuyasha would drag her from home, but today he hadn't waited for her. Kagome frowned, remembering her mother telling her that yes, she had seen Inuyasha, she had talked to him and had given him a pack of ramen so he could make it for himself. But then Inuyasha had ran away. According to her mother mere minutes before Kagome had returned home.

Kagome stopped when she felt a familiar youki nearby and she put her back down to investigate. Stealthily she made her way through the forest and came to a small meadow, one of Inuyasha's favorite places.

The hanyou was there, digging a hole. Before Kagome's stunned eyes the hanyou examined the depth of his hole and took something out of his robe. The future-born miko blinked in shock when she saw a colorful square that looked suspiciously like a ramen package. The hanyou threw it in the hole and started to cover it carefully with dirt.

"Um..." Kagome realized that she shouldn't probably see it. Inuyasha was rather touchy when it came to his canine behaviors, probably ashamed to act like an animal in front of his human friends. The hanyou looked at her and his ears twitched. But, to her surprise, he didn't start yelling at her, flustered that she witnessed another of his dog compulsions

"A minute," he said, resuming his work. "And don't think about spilling my secret to anyone, wench."

"Uh... Of course," Kagome promised. The tone of her voice had to make him realize that she was confused and unsure of the situation,l because as soon as he was done he wiped his hands and stood up.

"This is my treasure meadow," he said. "People bury treasures. in your time too, right?"

"...Ramen?"

"I have different priorities than others," he shrugged nonchalantly. "You can't eat gold and jewels"

He had a point. From his perspective food was much more valuable than wealth, after all he had spent all his childhood on the brink of starvation. Most humans wouldn't want to sell him anything even if he had money, so he never learned its value. She smiled at him.

"I understand," she said and started to walk towards her backpack. "But now come, I have some special treats for you in my bag. I'll give you them if you carry it to Kaede's."

Chapter Text

"Are those... Tentacles...?" asked Kouga, who went to look at other people's businesses.

"Yup." Naraku cushioned the back of his head with his hands.

"But... Why do you grew them there?" asked the bewildered wolf.

"I, Naraku, am a busy man. I don't have time for unimportant things. And with tentacles I have my both hands free when nature calls, so I can make better plans to destroy my arch enemy." He glared at Inuyasha, who was bathing on the other side of the pool and ignored the heated gaze of the other hanyou

Miroku meanwhile looked at the rest of the guys and sighed.

"You know what? I'm the only human here, I'm at a disadvantage."

"Don't blame this on your human status," cackled Naraku after giving the monk an once over. "Yesterday I, Naraku, bathed with the Band of Seven and let me tell you - the majority of the group is more endowed than you."

"I see," Miroku gave a sad nod and stood up. "I think I'll go to bathe with the girls..."

Inuyasha pulled him down to sit beside him. "No, you don't."

Chapter Text

He was sitting by the open gate, watching the moonlit forest, shadows of the trees moving across the ground and against the sky. Chikara and Kiba sat on his sides, warming him with their bodies, providing a sense of security.

He was left here alone pretty often, but he didn't fear the place. This was his safe haven, a place where no thunderstorm could reach. His guardian wasn't maybe as playful as his father had been, but he was cool to be around most of the time - after all he had to practice his tricks on someone. And if he was bored he could always go to the village near the dwelling. After the trip to the human nobleman's palace his guardian was less reluctant to let him go and interact with humans, trusting in his ability to sense danger and flee or defend himself. This acknowledgment - although never spoken aloud - was a source of his pride.

But tonight he was keeping watch in the den and he was waiting anxiously at Inuyasha and Kagome. The miko had promised him to bring Inuyasha back and the young youkai believed her.

Suddenly, a movement between the trees drew his attention and he jumped to his feet, his tail swaying in anticipation. Then it bristled out when he saw that it was Yami, running at top speed, as if chased by a swarm of youkai.

Chikara and Kiba stood up, growling and barking, as if encouraging their pack mate to run faster and trying to scare away whatever was chasing him. Shippou could sense a faint tingle of youki, but he couldn't see anything

"Yami!" he called the dog, who was just a few leaps away from the safety of the ancient barrier. Suddenly, mid-leap, Yami yelped and fell to the ground, as if something tugged him down. To Shippou's shock and fear the dog started to slide across the snow, as if dragged by a hind leg. He was fighting, trying to wiggle free, clawing at the ground and trying to bite whatever was holding him.

With a battle howl Chikara sprang forward, followed closely by Kiba. The silence of the night filled the barks, growls and yelps of the canines trying to free their captured companion, fighting against a silent, invisible foe. It seemed it was a losing battle, Shippou realized it when Kiba was suspended in the air, wiggling and yowling when his body started to twist as if something was squeezing it.

With a scream the little kitsune leaped out of the safety of his den, determined to this time do whatever it took to save his pack from the danger that came upon them like a lightning from a clear sky.

Chapter Text

She was a very outspoken, brave girl, a young woman who had her goals in life named and was willing to do anything to achieve them. She was a strong person, everyone who knew her knew she was an optimist and a realist. She knew that with her skills and intelligence she could do anything, with her friends she could defeat anyone who was stupid enough to bar their way towards their destiny.

But there were dreams she rarely dared to dream, wishes she only hoped to make true one day. She lacked confidence and was afraid she wasn't feminine enough. She had a small desire only a certain man could fulfill, but she didn't dare to say anything.

She looked up from her spot by the camp fire, longing in her eyes as they rested on the hair of the man sitting nearby. She glanced around and saw that Shippou was busy playing with Kirara. The other man in the group was sitting under a tree with his eyes closed, she supposed he was either meditating or napping. Her sister in heart looked up from her work and smiled at her before pointing to the first man, who sat with his back turned towards then. Then she reached into her bag and threw at her a small object, practically telling her to go and do what she desired to do.

Miroku froze in place, his hand with a brush hovering over a half-finished sutra, when he felt a hand stroking his hair.

"Huh?" he felt a small tug and his hair was free of the string gathering it in a ponytail.

"Oh, your tie got loose," he heard Sango's voice from behind him. "Here, let me redo your ponytail."

Before the stunned monk could say anything he felt a comb running down his hair. He sighed and relaxed in the caress of strong yet gentle hands.

'Your hair is so nice, I always wanted to comb it,' the blushing, but happy exterminator thought.

'I always enjoy when you show me you care, my dear love," Miroku smiled, simply glad that the usually shy girl got so bold of out a sudden.

Chapter Text

"We should go swiftly if we wish to reach our destination," he said and glanced down at the girl standing beside him. She was looking at him hopefully.

'It's his fault,' he growled inwardly.

She smiled at him and he sighed.

He knelt on one knee, presenting his back to her and waiting for her to climb on it. He felt her hands gently gathering his hair and moving it to the side, so not to pull at them later. Then she climbed onto his back, her hands gripping his shoulders, her legs around his waist. He carefully reached a hand to secure her on his back as he stood up.

He could feel her smile as she pressed her face in the fabric of his kimono and it almost made him smile himself. But he kept his face stoic and glared at the kappa standing to the side, gawking.

"You are to follow this Sesshomaru when Ah-Un is fully recovered," he stared and took off running. His sensitive ears tingled from the sound of the happy squeal of the girl on his back.

This all was his fault - the half-breed was the one responsible for all of this. He and his human miko. It had happened a week ago, when they had met and Rin had witnessed the priestess riding on the half-breed's back, obviously having fun as he leaped from a tree limb to a tree limb.

Two days took the girl to work up her courage and approach him, requesting a ride. Judging from the happy laughter and flushed cheeks she obviously enjoyed herself.

He couldn't help himself - this time he smirked and maybe there was a little extra force behind the next leaping step, pushing them to soar high above a ditch in the forest floor before reaching the other side and speeding between the trees.

Rin cried out in delight and squeezed his shoulders a little tighter, obviously not afraid of the speed or height, trusting in her guardian to keep her safe.

Yes, it was all his little brother's fault. All of this.

Chapter Text

Shippou was sitting on a rock, munching on a chocolate bar and musing. An almost mature guy like himself had to do a lot of both, especially one that wanted to become the great hero of untold power and having many fans.

He was looking at the rest of the gang doing their usual things around the camp, just a normal day of shard hunting.

He had no father anymore, no older brother or a cousin to give him advice and examples of how to achieve his goals. But he was a smart boy, he could figure out stuff by himself, using his great intellect.

Being powerful was actually easy. He had to practice a lot and keep an open mind so he could learn from all possible sources.

But becoming good with women... Hm, that was going to take more work and thinking than that. Everyone could be strong, provided they would train a lot.

He looked for to Miroku. After all the monk was proclaiming himself charming and having a lot of experience dealing with women. Shippou frowned at what was happening before his eyes.

Sango was slapping the half-conscious monk for his attempted groping.

'No, definitely not going that way,' Shippou thought and looked to the other side of the fire.

Inuyasha was pouting and readjusting his robes after being carefully wrapped in bandages by Kagome. The miko smiled at him and scratched behind his ear, whispering something Shippou couldn't hear from his rock. The hanyou looked sharply at her, as if ready to bark at her, but then blushed faintly and ever so slightly, leaned into her touch. Kagome's smile widened.

Shippou looked back to Miroku hastily apologizing to Sango before she could go grab her boomerang then again to Inuyasha, who was grumpily demanding ramen from the giggling Kagome. The kitsune didn't miss how his expression softened the minute Kagome's back was turned towards him.

Miroku had a silver tongue and knew how to talk to women, but he had little knowledge of their body language and seemed not to realize that personal space was a thing. Inuyasha on the other side was showing his feelings by his actions, but seemed to be too shy to actually say anything meaningful, unless cornered and without any way of escape.

Yes, being good with women was a real art, one that a man should perfect through his whole life. And there was no one real role model he could follow.

Chapter Text

The bandit was humming happily to himself and the two lovely women he had in his little hut in the forest. They were paralyzed, barely conscious - just the way he liked women.

He already decided to make one his wife and the second his concubine. They were going to be a happy family. And the women would of course have to take care of his brothers too - they would cook and clean for them, but they would share only his bed.

He stopped when he heard a noise from outside the hut. He was too long in the business to ignore it. He grabbed some poisons prepared just for that and went out to check on the surrounding area.

What he saw when he exited the hut was an otherworldly, exotic beauty. Long, silver, silky hair blowing on the wind, pristine white robe concealing an undoubtedly virginal body of the stranger. Flawless porcelain skin and striking golden eyes with lips made just for pouting.

The stranger was a bit too tall for Mukotsu's liking, but the mercenary knew a gift from the heavens when he saw one and wasn't one to scoff at gifts.

"Are you lost, lovely lady?" he inquired, playing his humble hermit's car since he just exited a lone hut in the forest. He didn't notice a perfect eyebrow twitching. "If you are lost I can share my house with you and come morning escort you to the nearest village."

A gentle wind swayed the tree limbs in the great forest covering hills and valleys near the sacred mountain. A flock of birds took flight as if frighted by something, just a second before a roar tore through the warm afternoon air.

"Souryūha!"

Chapter Text

The Sword of Power

Kagome came back earlier than she was supposed to. It looked like all the prancing around the warring states had prepared her for the history test better than any late night studying could. Now, without the need for a make up test Kagome had had a chance to catch up on her cartoon watching with her friends last evening and now was in the past instead of at school.

She was a bit tired after spending most of the night binge watching American cartoons on Netflix, but she felt also pretty glad because she had spent a while with her friends, laughing and talking, simply being herself. Well, maybe not exactly herself, but herself from the past. Now 'herself' contained arrow shooting, hanyou taming, perverted monks fending and general fantastic adventure-ing.

She had to admit that after being showered by a rain of youkai guts watching animated people fighting monsters wasn't as thrilling as before.

The miko made her way down a path, but not the one leading to the village, but the one headed towards the Sacred Tree. She could sense a certain hanyou was around there.

"Huh?" Kagome blinked. Inuyasha's fire rat kimono was hanging from a low branch, the Tessaiga reclined against the trunk of the tree, but there was no hanyou in sight. Why was that boy? He had to be close, she could sense his youki and he wouldn't leave his armor and sword behind. The area was so serene and calm, Kagome was sure there was nothing evil around Inuyasha's Forest.

Her eyes drifted to Inuyasha's prized sword. The one he always hugged while sleeping with his back against a wall. The one he held tightly in his grasp if distressed, the one that he cleaned so carefully after every fight, who he always caressed with his fingertips while thinking...

...Was it wrong to be jealous of a sword?...

Kagome shook her head. That was silly, he just really treasured his heirloom. It wasn't like he was taking it on romantic walks and movie nights.

A thought came to her mind, a silly one, but she decided to just do it, for fun and giggles. She approached the sword and reached for it. It didn't zap her, so she grabbed the old sheath hiding the blade and smiled. She glanced up to the fire rat kimono and grabbed it too.

.

Inuyasha was walking up a path leading from the river to the Sacred Tree. His hair was still wet, but it was going to get dry soon. His kosode and hakama were clean and practically dry too. The day was peaceful and all he lacked to be totally happy was one annoying, clueless miko.

He walked around some bushes and stopped on the edge of the meadow. There she was - his nicely smelling ramen bringing priestess. For some reason she had his kimono thrown over her shoulder and held Tessaiga in her hands.

"For the honor of Grayskull!" the teenager from the future exclaimed while raising the katana high above her head.

Did she finally lost her marbles...?

.

She felt very silly after calling the phrase aloud. Well, it wasn't like she was expecting anything to happen or whatever... Kagome glanced up to her hand holding the battered katana and then closed her eyes. Well, that was fun to do, despite how dumb she probably looked right now.

A rough warmth engulfed her hand like someone wrapped their much bigger hand around hers, And then she felt the sudden weight of the Tessaiga transforming. She looked up and saw a male, clawed hand holding the huge sword, supporting its weight ease. She could sense the youki hot and cold at the same time, humming in her grasp with the promise of unrestrained destruction.

"You know," a raspy, amused voice breathed against her ear. "The words are Kaze no Kizu, wench."

Chapter Text

Kagome was sitting by the well, reading a comic book made by her brother again. Souta was pretty good with drawing, improving with time and practice. He wanted to draw his own stories, but for now was focusing on short stories, often resembling American cartoons.

It was no surprise to her that the other part of his inspiration were her adventures in the past and his favorite big dog brother. Who, by the way, was his most esteemed beta reader and often helped improve the plot.

Usually by adding explosions.

Kagome was supposed to hand Inuyasha the newest finished comic book to evaluate. But since she was waiting for the hanyou (there was no way she could carry her pack all the way to the village by herself) she decided to check the comic book out.

It was obviously designed for boy readers. There were great Mechas ad battles in space. The team of protagonists had huge mechanic versions of Kirara that could combine into an even bigger samurai that was practically unbeatable. The samurai had a matching sword in his inventory.

Go figure.

Kagome giggled as she read the story following the adventures of the main five - the Purple Samurai, the Green Samurai, the Blue Samurai, the Red Samurai and the Orange Samurai, their colors matching their Kirara-like Mechas; fighting alongside the Priestess Kaede and master smith Totosai, with some other allies against the great NARAKU (Nations Annihilating Rogue Abomination Killer Usurper) and his Empire of Viledoom.

Kagome smiled fondly and with a lot of amusement when she read about the five brave Samurai helping the Planet Kingdom of Higurashi with its Prince Souta and Queen Mama fight off the great general Kouga from Planet Doom (who was both exceptionally ugly and stupid, on top of being covered by stinking fur) who had the Retired King Jiji-chan as a hostage. She blushed and read twice the pages where Souta depicted how the general tried to seduce the Blue Samurai, but failed because she loved the Red one, who then promptly wiped the floor with the general's face.

At the end of the story the Planet Kingdom was free of NARAKU's influence, Kouga's army in disarray, the Samurai getting a huge fears in their name and then getting into their machines to fly off into the setting sun.

She closed the notebook with a small smile and blinked when she saw a rain of potato chips' crumbles falling into her lap. She craned her head upward and found Inuyasha crouching on the lip of the well.

"Oi, I didn't finish reading yet!" he complained around a mouthful of chips.

Chapter Text

There was a mountain called Inuyama by local people, both youkai and humans. It wasn't infested by wild dog packs, nor did it resemble a dog. There was no shrine dedicated to a dog deity on the side of the mountain, desolated most of the time.

Yet, people called it Dog Mountain.

A tall daiyoukai clad in while approached a small fire located in an easy to defend spot that had a nice view of the lands stretched under the foot of the mountain. The moon was shining overhead, bathing everything in gentle light.

"Hm," the daiyoukai said and walked towards the man sitting by the fire. One of the man's ears twitched and swiveled his way - the only sign that the man was aware of the approaching youkai lord. His eyes never left a couple of fish grilling over the fire.

"So... you too?" he said after a moment. The daiyoukai sat down on the opposite side of the fire, looking at the red-clad hanyou.

"Affirmative."

The silence stretched between two men, one watching the supper, the other turning to look at the land below.

"What brought you here now?" the daiyoukai inquired. He was alright with not talking, but found himself sightly curious.

"Teething." the hanyou pointed to his ears, drawing the youkai's attention to them. Upon closer inspection the daiyoukai found them swollen and lacking small patches of fur, showing reddened skin.

"I see your pup grew his fangs," he remarked with just a hint of amusement.

"Keh! And what about you? Why are you here, instead of your palace?"

"This one's lady mate found it in herself to desire pears," the daiyoukai replied. "This one searched far and wide, but found no pears that matched his standards."

"So you're waiting for her craving to go away? Bad move, believe me," the hanyou, more experienced in the matter, smirked. "There will be hell to pay."

"Hm."

"Or you can wait until this year's pears are edible, it should take only a month or so," he suggested.

"This one will take your advice upon consideration."

The silence reigned again, but not for long.

"How long shall you stay up the mountain?"

"I'm just staying the night. I guess come morning Shippou will be begging me to keep my pup away from his tail," the hanyou smirked. "And my ears will heal until then. I will return home tomorrow."

"Who would have thought that a mere half-breed holds such wisdom."

"Keh!"

The silence of Inuyama mountainside basked in moonlight returned for long, cloaking the two men sharing a humble supper.

Chapter Text

Sango knew something was wrong with Inuyasha.

The hanyou was giving her sneaky glances all the day. They were at Kaede's village and were to leave the next day. Kagome was back already, sorting herbs with Kaede in her hut.

And yet, Inuyasha wasn't sitting around the young miko, he was sitting in a tree near the bench where Sango had her gear laid out and was giving it the last check before packing it for the road.

To say it was odd would be an understatement.

Twitch, twitch, twitch.

His ears were constantly moving, which was unusual for him too. Of course, they would swivel this way and that, but not if there was no sound t be focused on. It was a clear sign he was uneasy.

The problem was there was nothing for him to be uneasy about. They had a shard rumor to follow tomorrow, Kagome was already in their time, their supplies were almost packed, they were rested and healthy. And there hadn't been even a small quarrel with Kagome lately. Everything should be just peachy for him.

Twitch, twitch, twitch.

Obviously wasn't.

And Sango worried about what was the cause of this behavior.

She turned to her stuff and carefully put her smoke pellets away. Then she checked her knives. Then...

"Oi, Sango!"

The exterminator found herself on the other side of the bench, two blades in her hands, facing the hanyou who had startled her by sneaking up just behind her and speaking with his usual brash voice.

"Uh," she lowered her weapons. "Sorry, reflex. What is it?"

He snored and gave her a look that clearly indicated he wasn't offended by her reflex. On the contrary, she could see in his eyes he was pretty pleased she was so fast to react. Then the pensive, anxious expression from before returned and he looked away, crossing his arms in front of his chest.

"I wanna ask you a question," he said after a second. "But no one has to know about it, you have to promise!"

His twitching ears laid back and Sango smiled at him trying to ease his anxiety somehow. He squatted where he stood and she took it as a sign for her to sit down on the free end of the bench and put her weapons away. She gave him her full attention and tried to look encouraging.

She wasn't sure she was dong a good job.

"Keh!" he was still avoiding her gaze. She nodded, knowing that it was better to let him speak at his own pace. "So... I have a friend. And this friend, well... Uh... He wants to know..."

"Yes...?" Sango dared to breathe. Was Inuyasha actually going to ask her what she was thinking he was going to ask?

"That friend - I obviously ain't talking about me! - he wants to know how a boy should approach a girl... One that's fierce like a priestess of Bishamonten."

Sango wasn't sure if she was more elated that Inuyasha actually came to ask her for an advice in regard to court a girl (she was pretty sure which girl he had in mind), surprised by his description of the said girl, shocked that he actually wanted an advice or glad he came to a girl than to Miroku to get the said advice.

She looked at him and saw him watching her carefully with those yellow eyes that she learned to like pretty much. He didn't look like most people, with his exotic coloring, but after the first shock she learned to look past it and see Inuyasha, her friend, kinda like a reckless cousin, a companion in arms.

He never saw in her just a girl. She never saw in him just a half-breed.

So now, when he came to her with such a delicate matter, she decided to give him her best advice, not brush him off.

"Well," she rubbed the back of her neck, thinking what he could do for Kagome. "You could be nice to her..."

"Oi! I told you - it's my friend that asked me to ask you! Geez, I told you, it's ain't me who wants an advice!" he growled.

"Oh, sorry," Sango barely kept from giggling at his reddened face. "Well... I think your friend should be honest with his beloved, tell her what he feels. And he could give her little things like flowers or gentle touches to show his affection. Holding hands would be nice. But not in public, so she doesn't get embarrassed."

"Hm," he gave a small nod. She was pleased to see him listening intently.

"You... I mean your friend could be more open with this girl. Tell her what he thinks about things, what he hopes for, what he worries about. She will gladly help him and open up to him too."

"Okay, okay, he's past talking and touching, and all that shit" he grew impatient. "What about when he wants to make sure she knows he loves her? That he sees only her?"

Sango almost clapped her hands. Was he really asking her that? Oh, lucky Kagome!

"He... He could tell her he loves her and give her a kiss, a gentle, yet passionate one," she suggested. "I mean saying the words should be enough, but I think she would appreciate a kiss."

She giggled, imagining Kagome's stunned face.

The next day they were walking down a road. Sango was looking at the miko and hanyou walking in front of her, smiling and hoping Inuyasha was going to use her advice soon. Shippou was happily running around, playing hide and chase with Kirara.

Suddenly she found Miroku standing in front of her. Before she could open her mouth and ask him why he was blocking her way, he grasped her hands, put a small bunch of flowers in her fingers and gave her his most charming smile.

"I love you, my dearest Sango," he proclaimed and placed a chaste kiss against her lips.

Kagome and Inuyasha turned around when they heard Sango's cry and then a slap, followed by a thud of a certain monk's body falling to the ground. Shippou and Kirara both froze among the near bushes, observing the other part of the gang.

"Why did you do that?!" the hanyou uttered in shock. "He did all you said me! Right....? Or did he just go for your ass again?"

Kagome looked between the baffled hanyou and the exterminator who stood over the fallen monk, a bunch of wild flowers in one hand, the other pressed against her recently kissed lips, her eyes wide like saucers.

Chapter Text

He was the one and only Ramen King. He lived in a palace build from ramen cups, with roofs made from ramen packages. His people and himself ate ramen almost all the time, rarely switching to inferior foods, so they could appreciate the divine taste of ramen the next time they ate it.

There were his friends, who also liked ramen and liked to come over to his castle to eat a tower. They had to rebuild it later with new cups of ramen, but it was always fine to play a game of 'you don't know which taste you'll get'. Samurai fought in noodle braiding competitions to win favors of the court ladies.

And the best thing in his Ramen Majesty's life was that his Ramen Queen's robe was made from ramen noodles and he was the one who could eat it every night.

His Ramen Majesty's life was perfect.

.

"I'm not sure that this sleeping drug was a good idea, Lady Kaede," Miroku looked worried at the hanyou laying under Kagome's blanket in a corner of Kagome's hut. Kagome was kneeling beside the hanyou, sleeping with a wide, dopey smile on his face, despite the severe wounds he had sustained during their last battle. Kagome was smiling gently at her hanyou, ignorant to their friends watching her and Inuyasha worriedly.

"Don't worry, Miroku," the old miko smiled. "The dose I gave him could make a horse sleep for a week. It should last until he's healed enough."

Kagome leaned in to brush a stray strand of hair from Inuyasha's cheek.

"...Ramen Queen..." he muttered happily in his sleep.

"He'll be fine," Shippou snickered when he saw his adoptive mother blushing and snatching her hand away from Inuyasha's face.

Chapter Text

Naraku saw a gap in his enemies' defenses. There was no way to get to the weakest of Inuyasha's group, since they were protected by the hanyou who was hard to beat - even if he, Naraku, wouldn't admit that. The Lord of the West was also difficult to deal with and his group was nowhere in sight, so Naraku couldn't attack them.

But Kikyou seemed to be out of her arrows and far enough from both dogs...

A tentacle sprang forward and pierced the clay flesh of the miko.

"Kikyou!" called Inuyasha, desperation in his voice. Despite the clear wish to go to her side the hanyou didn't move from his spot in front of Kagome and Shippou.

There was no reason, since Kikyou's body was already falling apart around Naraku's tentacle...

"Kukuku!" Naraku laughed in mirth.

...And a small thing wrapped in a lock of Kikyou's black hair.

"...Ku?" Naraku grabbed the core of the Kikyou he destroyed just a moment ago. No one was charging at him and that was - especially in Inuyasha's case - pretty disturbing. He examined what he was holding. It was... "A puppet...?"

"I know it's a bit on the cheating side," Kikyou's voice said from behind him. "But you know what they say. If you fight by a sword you die by a sword."

And as he turned around to look at the dead miko Naraku felt a arrow piercing his form right where his tentacle had pierced her puppet.

Chapter Text

It happened again. He was sitting on a fence, watching mesmerized how they moved around, unaware of the danger he posed. He was just watching them, but... He wanted to pounce, to grab, to tear, smear fresh blood all over his face and hands. Yet he remained still, only his tail moving, showing how excited and eager to leap he was.

It wasn't like he was starving - since meeting Kagome and Inuyasha he had never went hungry. But he was craving to jump from the fence and engage those he was watching.

It was one of his habits when the gang was in the village - he would come to this fence, sit on a fence post and just watch the inhabitants of the chicken coop. He was aware that harming the chickens would put him in real danger (and out of Kagome's good graces) The villagers could turn a blind eye on his tricks and pranks, but killing their livestock... Inuyasha had warned him about it the first time he had seen him watching the chickens. And before him his father had been warning him about this every time while lecturing him about surviving near human dwellings.

A big chicken suddenly straightened its neck and waved its wings to settle its feathers down. Shippou didn't even realize what he was doing before he found himself suspended in the air, mid-leap.

He looked back to see what was holding his tail, feeling a block of ice in his belly. Fear and anxiety mixed with shame filled his mouth with a sour taste he hated the most in the world. Whoever caught him would now surely give him a real scolding or a beating.

...Oh gods, it was Inuyasha.

The hanyou was squatting on the horizontal bar of the fence, holding the nearest post for balance and gripping his tail in iron grip. And from the expression on his face he wasn't likely to be fooled by some lie. He knew exactly why Shippou jumped at the sudden move of the chicken.

A predator knew how a predator would react.

"Inu... Inuyasha... I..." he started as the hanyou moved him closer to himself.

"I know," the dog hanyou growled, confirming Shippou's worries. He didn't sound pleased. It wasn't his mock angry 'I'll chase you and pretend to swipe at you' tone, it was his 'I warned you not to do this' tone.

"I'm sorry," the little kitsune dared to apologize softly, his eyes downcast. They could play pranks and tease each other, but they were pack. And despite Inuyasha being a half youkai, due to his strength and cunning he held a higher rank within the pack than Shippou. They could bicker over small things, but there were times when Shippou knew that it wasn't wise to antagonize the leader. "It startled me and..."

"I know," Inuyasha leaped off of the fence and dashed across the fields, headed towards the forest that bore his name. He still held Shippou tightly, not giving him even a shadow of a chance to escape. The calmness of his voice and purposeful retreat to the wildness didn't fool Shippou, he could sense Inuyasha's agitation and displeasure, he had seen the sharp glint of his eyes.

He bit his bottom lip, hoping that Kagome could save him, knowing she couldn't because she was in her time. And even if she wasn't, Inuyasha wasn't likely to go near her before finishing his business with Shippou.

Which meant that the dog was going to chew the fox, probably literally.

Finally Inuyasha stopped, deep in the forest. He sat down cross-legged and put the kitsune on the ground beside him. Shippou waited anxiously for a minute or two for him to talk.

"You acted on instinct," the hanyou stated. "That means the kitsune inside you is ready to hunt, that, despite all other signs, you're maturing."

"Hey!" Shippou protested weakly to the implication he was childish. A heavy hand landed on his head, but not in a mock punch that could prompt him to run to Kagome and pretend he was mortally hit. It was one of the rough shows of affection mixed with scolding. It could be translated to 'Shut up'.

"The villagers like you and tolerate your antics because they more or less harmless and they aren't willing to offend Inari, especially with the rice harvest approaching," Inuyasha glanced down at the boy looking up at him from behind his bangs. "But if you go after their animals or their young they're going to grab pitchforks."

"I know. I... I don't know what came over me," the boy looked to the side. "One minute I was just watching, the other I was in the air."

"Watching? You were stalking," Inuyasha growled. "And that means you're big enough to start hunting for the groups. It will help you keep your furry ass out of the coop if you spend a few hours running around the forest."

"Dad didn't teach me much..." Shippou didn't argue with Inuyasha. Actually, being tasked with hunting for them all, providing for them, was an important duty, a sign that he was a valuable part of the pack.

"And that's why I brought you here, brat, I'll teach you. You're going to regret ever coming close to the chickens," Inuyasha smirked wickedly and Shippou swallowed.

Chapter Text

It was the day before Christmas. Since the snow in the past era was too high to travel down most roads the gang was spending their time in the village, resting and preparing for spring.

Inuyasha was unhappy because of that, but he didn't try to drag the humans out of the village anymore. Even youkai were keeping close to their lairs. He was busying himself with providing meat and fresh wood for the village and when he was free he was often going to Kagome's time to bring her for a visit in the village or to stay at her home and enjoy the wonders (and horrors) of the future.

Right now he was shaking snow off of his feet on the dirt part of Kaede's floor before he could join the group greeting the newly arrived young miko who had jumped off of his back just a moment ago.

"I will be going home before dark," Kagome warned everyone and put her bag on the floor beside her. She smirked when Shippou and Inuyasha practically teleeportted to the spots on her sides. Judging by the sparks of mirth in eyes of the monk, exterminator and miko gathered on the other side of the fire pit, they found it as amusing as she did. Then Kirara jumped to her lap and purred, what was a bit abnormal, the cat preferred Sango's lap.

But Kagome smiled when she stroked Kirara's back, guessing that was normal. After all all three youkai sniffing around her could easily smell what she had in her bag.

And she was pretty sure it smelled as good for them as it would for a human.

"That's quite alright," Kaede nodded. "We're always glad to have you with us," Sango and Miroku nodded their agreement

"I'll carry you back later," Inuyasha grumbled, his eyes watching her bag as if was about to leap away.

"Okay," Kagome smiled.

"What's in the bag?" Shippou was the first one who voiced his curiosity, looking at Kagome with his big emerald eyes.

"You see, tomorrow is the Christmas Eve, a holiday in my time that many celebrate," Kagome explained. "In my time families come together to enjoy time together and show their love to each other," she smiled warmly at her friends. "That's why I'm going to stay home tomorrow and the day after tomorrow. I wish you all could come to my time and join my family," she added sadly.

"We have you here today, it's alright." Miroku said. "Spend time with your family and don't worry."

Kagome smiled at him, then poked Inuyasha's shoulder.. The hanyou looked deep in thought and somewhat sad when she explained about the holiday.

"You can come to visit, you grumpy dog," she teased and he just gave her a half-heated scowl. "Anyway, we usually eat a special meal during that holiday and I brought it to enjoy it with you guys."

"That's so nice," Sango smiled. "Thank you, Kagome. We're a bit like a family, I think, even if not related by blood. At least I see you as such." She blushed.

"Feh, the terms a pack, right, brat?" Inuyasha grumbled.

"Yeah," Shippou stopped his sniffing around the bag to nod.

"It's a beautiful image we make," Miroku said with a wide grin. "Obviously Lady Kaede is the honorable grandmother of the family, along with Kirara."

"Nan!"

"Obviously Shippou is the child of the family, while Sango and Kagome are sisters. Sango's the mother and Inuyasha is a..."

"Go on, monk, tell me what I am." Inuyasha growled.

"You... You are the future brother in law to the lovely Sango, my friend," Miroku grinned in the face of the scowling hanyou. "And I'm the father of the family."

"Miroku!" called three embarrassed and annoyed voices. Kaede and giggling Shippou had to wait a few minutes before the teens cooled enough to return their seats.

"Talking about denial," Shippou shook his head, causing the old miko to chuckle.

"Um," Kagome unfastened her bag and started handing out plastic containers with the aforementioned meal, trying to make others forget about Miroku's metaphor. And she was pretty successful, because the ragtag family quickly found themselves amazed by the wonders of the KFC menu.

"The taste of this chicken is so different than anything I had in my life," Kaede said. "I wonder what the seasonings were."

"I can bring some of them back when I get my hands on them," Kagome promised. "But I think we could try and make a sengoku jidai version of KFC too."

"This is like nirvana served in bite-sized pieces," Miroku sighed while licking ketchup off of his fingers.

"You can say that twice," Sango hummed. Inuyasha, who was already finished, eyes Shippou, who grinned and showed him his empty box. Then they both looked to Kagome, who hugged her meal.

"No, no, no, don't ever think about getting any of my chicken nuggets!"

Chapter Text

Kagome groaned and opened her eyes. The memories were hazy, but she remembered fighting an odd youkai. They all hit it with all they had and finally killed it, but why was she now laying on a blanket, near a fire? She didn't remember moving from their battlefield... But now they were in a small forest meadow and it was almost evening.

"Are you okay?" Miroku leaned over her and looked at her worriedly. He had a big bruise on his forehead from an attack from the youkai.

"Uh... I think I'm fine. How are the others?" she rasped out. She really could use a cup of tea.

"Here, let me check..." all her cognitive processes stopped when she felt a hand grabbing her hip.

"Aaargh!" without thinking she swung her hand at him and scored a direct hit to his jaw, sending him tumbling to the floor. "Oh, sorry, Miroku, I didn't mean to hit you so hard!"

"Servers him right," she heard an amused hanyou and turned to see Inuyasha sitting nearby, Shippou perched on an overhanging branch of a nearby tree.

"Yeah,that pervert," the kitsune added. Miroku moaned in a mix of pain and disagreement. It sounded a bit like 'I'm so misunderstood.'

But Kagome wasn't paying any attention to the boys. Carefully she rose to her feet and made her way to the other laying person, guarded by the sitting hanyou. Inuyasha tilted his head when she approached.

"What's up?" he asked. She ignored him, instead staring at...

...At her own body laying asleep under a blanket. She felt the world under her spinning, but before she could fall to the ground and squeeze Inuyasha under herself the hanyou jumped up and steadied her.

"Woah, be careful, you took a hit to your head when the youkai exploded," he muttered and led her back to her blanket and the sleeping Kirara curled beside the place her head had been. Miroku was kneeling beside the blanket and rubbing his abused cheek, but didn't look angry. She turned her eyes at him and grabbed one of his forelocks.

"Inuyasha..." she breathed out. "I'm not Sango. I'm Kagome."

At first they didn't want to believe her, but when the other girl woke up a while later the truth became obvious. Somehow their bodies were switched. The worried group decided to return to Kaede's village and look for the old miko's advice.

Luckily for them the next day near the mid-morning they reached the village and spoke to Kaede, who had a medicine to aid the troubled girls. The downside was that even after applying it they had to spend the rest of the day in not theirs bodies.

That didn't seem like such a hard thing, since Sango and Kagome had little secrets from each other and there was no embarrassment about their physique. Shippou just found the whole thing amusing, because they were still mistaking one girl for another Inuyasha wasn't complaining either, since neither of the girls could sit him. But quickly he realized that now Kagome could simply grab Hiraikotsu and take a swing at him.

It occurred to him when he commented on her finally having a womanly figure.

Miroku stood beside Sango holding Kirara in her arms. Shippou was rolling on the grass as they all were watching Kagome running after Inuyasha, swinging the huge boomerang at his head.

"Hm, that looks so odd to see you running after him," he commented. "I know you're standing beside me, at least your soul, but seeing your body chasing after another with a desire to maim him..."

"It's quite weird," Sango agreed. "But he should be wiser and not put his foot in his mouth like that," Sango glanced at Miroku's hand, which was slowly inching to her rear dressed in a short skirt. "And speaking of wisdom. Tell me, monk, what do you think Inuyasha would do to you if you grabbed Kagome's butt?"

The hand was snatched back with the speed of light.

Chapter Text

She was an ordinary woman, at least if you looked only once. Dark hair, pleasant face, nice figure, simple clothing.

But when you looked twice she was anything but ordinary. From the skin-tight uniform hidden under her kimono, through the various weapons and tricks up her sleeve to the grace her body was moving with.

She was a miracle, one that he never tired to look at. He loved to just sit there and observe her doing whatever she had to do - be it kindling fire, doing laundry or killing youkai.

She hadn't the most beautiful face and yet it was hard to look away from her small smile, her sparkling eyes. She was attractive at the first glance. but she was beautiful beyond words after getting to know her.

He sat on a tree root, enjoying the sun rays of the late afternoon and the sight of the maiden at his side. He suspected the rest of the gang was nearby, he could sense their youki behind the nearest bush. It was quite annoying to have their friends spying on them during their first picnic.

And yet he couldn't tear his eyes away from the pale wrist of the girl, twisted gracefully as she poured him tea.

He lifted his eyes to look into hers and suddenly - as if by a divine miracle - there was nothing more in his world beside that strong, capable, wonderful woman blushing and peeking at him from behind her long lashes.

Chapter Text

Other boys were playing with a ball, running together, laughing and calling to each other. Her boy never played a ball, despite having the desire to join the group. But he was pushed away and felt hurt for not being included.

This only made her realize yet again, that no matter how much she tried he wouldn't fit. Not because he was lacking, but because he was more than they could handle.

She knew it was hard on him. His father's kin ran in packs, loners were rare. He longed for acceptance and affection and she often saw in his eyes that he would go to great lengths to get it. The knowledge it would probably always be beyond his reach broke her heart. That was why she dedicated herself to give him more love, more care than any other mother would give her son.

Other boys played and pranced around. Her boy was playing by learning how to stalk butterflies and rabbits, how to find birds' nests and weave primitive nets to catch fish.

Other boys learned good manners, the social ladder and the ceremonies. Her boy learned about the value of hard work, honor and loyalty. She, the daughter of a feudal lord, a princess in her own right, a woman of samurai blood, was teaching him all tricks she knew, the wisdom of surviving in the forest and outsmarting others.

Other boys were told to always follow orders of their seniors and - in the future - lords. She never taught him blind obedience, she taught him to think and decide for himself. From her he learned that that one should follow orders of those who were worthy of being followed.

Other boys leaned how to read and write, how to wield a sword. Her boy learned how to utilize his claws, ripping pieces of wood for a fire he was going to build under her watchful eye. She knew he had a heart and mind that could surpass any of the boys' in the household, but she never directed it towards fleeting things like poetry and calligraphy.

Many looked down at her, thinking her son was a lowly and stupid being, but the truth was that he was not. He was smart, cunning, curious of the world. She just nudged him towards a certain path.

Because she knew one day he'd be alone. Because she knew that the basics she was teaching him were going to save his life once hers ended.

Because she hoped that with that knowledge he could live long enough to find his pack, find acceptance and a place to belong he so desperately craved for.

Chapter Text

Other boys wanted her to be their girl, but she never agreed to that. She liked to think he was her boy. To daydream that he cared for her deeply, that she was the most important woman in his life. And sometimes when she looked into his eyes she felt she was.

Other boys were always speaking nicely. Both in the past in her time most of them tried to use pretty words and compliments. Her boy spoke with gruffness and usually sprinkled his speech with swear words. While other boys cared to speak nice he didn't care for fancy words. But he never lied, despite the fact he often worded his thoughts poorly or couldn't describe what he felt properly. Obviously, he wasn't used to long discussions, but when he spoke he was blunt and honest.

Other boys paid some attention to their clothing, especially in her time. A nicely pressed uniform or a fashionable shirt were a must. But her boy wore an ancient kimono made from fur of a legendary beast, practical and not revealing much of his body shape. And yet there were firm muscles and deft limbs hidden under the layer of red, a body fit to fight, to protect. It was bringing her comfort when she could lean against him in her time of weakness.

Other boys often flirted. He was the densest, most clueless guy ever. And, beside being annoying, it was quite sweet.

Other boys were generous, offering her gifts and proposing to take her places, showing tickets to a movie or an amusement park. Her boy provided for her, carried her on his own back, Sure, he often grumbled about that, but he never denied her and went out of his way to find safe spots for camping, ones with an easy access to hot springs or rivers.

Other boys let her go first through the door. He didn't care about that, but he always made sure that wherever she went she was safe. And if the path was dangerous he eagerly stepped forward to shield her from anything that could come her way. Even if it was a piece of laundry falling from a balcony overhead.

Other boys, especially in her time, were free to plan their future according to their dreams, were accepted to the society and knew nothing about the life of solitude. Her boy was a hanyou.

And she loved him, for who he was, not for what he was. She accepted him even if his flaws often were a cause of a major quarrel. He was her bad boy, following his own rules, her wild hanyou who never judged others despite being judged by them for what he was.

And when she was offered a chance she returned to him because she longed to be at his side as much as he longed her to be there.

Chapter Text

"My mission here is done." Kikyou said in the silence that reigned after Naraku's final scream of: 'Nooo! I would've been victorious if not for that wretched group of teens and their dog...!"

Inuyasha sighed as he sheathed Tessaiga.

He really had no choice.

It wasn't like he had problems choosing the one he loved deeper, but there was no hosing on his part when all was said and done.

Kagome stood on the edge of the meadow, desperation and determination shining in her eyes, stubbornly wanting to wait for his words before acting. Miroku, Sango, Kirara and Shippou stood around her, all concerned.

Naraku's body was smoking and laying discarded in bits and pieces around the meadow. The jewel was completed and resting safely in Kagome's grip. Sesshomaru stood to the side, watching the dark hanyou disappear.

Kikyou stood in front of Inuyasha, a couple of meters away from his friends.

"It is time for me to leave, Inuyasha. Go to hell with me."

The world seemed to stop breathing, waiting for him to choose.

"Even if I wanted to go I can't, Kikyou."

"Inuyasha?" Kagome gasped, along with the rest of the audience. He smirked inwardly, were they really thinking he wanted to go to hell? Were they thinking he actually could go to hell? Silly humans. Even if he wanted to follow Kikyou he couldn't, not only because he had people to live for now.

"What? Why?" Kikyou frowned. "You were supposed to go..."

"I can't," he shrugged. "I have people to live for, Kikyou. I did my best to avenge you, but even if I wanted to die and go to hell with you I simply can't."

"And why is that?" Kikyou pouted, looking at the hanyou who shrugged again and walked back to his friends, who were giving him relieved smiles.

"Because," Sesshomaru said from the place where he stood, watching the pieces of Naraku disappear. "All dogs go to heaven."

Chapter Text

It was a rainy day in Kaede's village and even Inuyasha was reluctant to go out. So the gang stayed inside and enjoyed various activities to strengthen the group bonds, plan battle strategies, have some fun and spend some quality time in general.

From word to word the conversation turned to youkai true forms and after Inuyasha's comment on Sesshomaru's true form Shippou exclaimed for him to shut up because he - as a hanyou - knew nothing about the awesomeness of having a true form.

What prompted the rest of the gang to inquire about his own true form.

Which Shippou decided to show, especially because they promised to keep Inuyasha away from him until the hanyou cooled down.

Now Shippou looked at his curious friends gathered around him. He puffed out his little chest and focused, hard. It wasn't that difficult to change into his true form, but he had never did this before, fearing they'd laughed at how tiny it was. But now he was too riled up to think about Inuyasha's mocking. 'Besides, the girls will probably love a cute kit,' he thought. He could imagine Sango cradling him in her arms and Kagome feeding him chocolate covered strawberries.

And then, in a poof of youki, he changed into his true form.

"Oh, my goodness!" exclaimed Sango and Kagome. Shippou blinked his eyes at them. They weren't squealing in awe for his cuteness, they were rather... Troubled. What was wrong? He looked to Miroku and Kaede and saw them both staring, jaws hanging.

"He," Inuyasha put a clawed hand on his back and grinned wickedly while Kagome went to empty Shippou's candy box into her backpack. "You're going on a diet, Shippou!"

Then he rolled the fox that wasn't bigger than Kirara in her kitten form, but was way rounder in the midsection area than it was healthy.

"I always wondered why he's so fit despite eating so much sweet and unhealthy things," Kaede shook her head.

"No! Not the diet!" Shippou tried and failed to run towards the grim looking miko taking his sweets away.

"And I think Inuyasha will have to increase the amount of wild chasing," Sango grinned. "You can't get fit only by refraining from eating sweets."

Chapter Text

1. Eat some of Kaede's stew. Did you notice how often she cooks for the whole gang? She must be a great cook!

2. Try to convince Kirara to take me on a small flight around the place. I say small, because I'm pretty sure if she tries to fly higher than 3 meters I'll start to beg to be put on the ground again.

3. Spend some time with Rin and poke fun at Jaken. The kid needs some socialization and normal conversations and Jaken... Let's face it, you want to poke fun at him too, probably.

4. Try to get one of the soul collectors from Kikyou. A friend of mine was pretty interested in those, I'd have a perfect pet for them! (I'm against giving animals as gifts unless it's valid, but hey, the soul collectors aren't normal animals)

5. While at it, try to help Kikyou out of her emo funk and try to actually enjoy her second chance at living.

6. Here should be the doggy back ride with Inuyasha (I sure hope I could bribe him with some home made pierogi or some other dish) but I'm pretty sure I'd be afraid of heights and speed. So maybe he'd let me get an ear rub instead? I sure hope Kagome wouldn't strangle me for touching what isn't mine :3
7.
8. Ask Sango for some self defense lessons. I'm pretty sure I'd not do good because I'm a geek who wasn't good at PE, but it'd be still fun to try.

9. Talk to Kagome about the importance of communication in building long-lasting relationships.

10. And take a jewel shard as a souvenir home.
I guess they;d have to come to me to grab it later, but hey, it'd be fun to see them in our world, ne?

Chapter Text

Kirara returned from her hunt pleasantly full. She swished her tails when she saw the camp empty. The fire was burning steadily, but low, obviously had been prepared in advance to last for a while unsuspected. And since it was lined with stones and had a circle of damp dirt around there was no danger of wild fire.

The things belonging to the gang were laid in piles around the meadow, their sleeping bags and blankets in one spot, food tools in another. It was obvious there hadn't been an attack.

Kirara swiveled her ears and easily located the gang down the hill, where a small lake was located. Judging by the sounds they were cooling down after a long day and playing. Sometimes it was hard to remember those warriors united to defeat a fore that had wronged them were also young. She purred, glad that the pack was bonding.

And she could use a while to get a nap, one not interrupted by bickering.

Kirara looked around and found a rectangular pack near Kagome's back pack. Further inspection showed it was filled with some grains, Kirara suspected it was one of those human healing pillows. They could keep warmth for a long time and help muscles relax, if she remembered correctly.

She could use it, Kagome surely wouldn't mind that.

With one graceful leap she found herself on the pillow and pawed it a few times before laying down. Purring she laid her head on her paws, letting her youki warm the pillow under her.

Warm, comfy, full belly, silence...

Yes, perfect...

Pop!

"Nyan?" Kirara's eyes snapped open when she heard a foreign noise. There was nothing attacking her, nothing different around her.

Pop! Pop!

This time she knew what the source of the sound was. It was the pillow! As she leaped to her feet, there were more sounds and the bag started to bulge. A tasty, salty scent filled the air. The sound was similar to snapping twigs.

"Nyan!" Kirara lowered her head with a growl of confused annoyance. The bag started to make that 'pop!' noise faster, deforming under her paws. She let them catch fire, just to make the bag realize she could burn it easily and to intimidate it.

Pop! Pop! Pop!

With her fur stanching up Kirara leaped from the bag and found another spot to sleep in. Clearly, human healing pillows had an anti-youkai protection built in. Kirara glared at the inflated, deformed bag that now rested silently near Kagome's yellow bag, then she went to sleep.

Chapter Text

Ah-Un was ready to take off.

It in itself wasn't unusual, the great airship had traveled before, but it was going to be the first time the miko Kagome Higurashi was going to be a member of the security service.

She had prepared for this travel as well as she could. She wore a pair of wide, dark red pants that could pass for a skirt and wouldn't be too scandalous. She also wore a loose top, hiding her bosom from any perverted eyes. The sleeves of her robe were cuffed at the wrist, which was a bit nontraditional, but she hoped would be overlooked, since it was practical. It was going to be her attire for two next trips, until her black uniform was ready. She put her flowing hair in a loose braid that could be pinned up if need arose and had her short bow and arrows at ready.

She was sitting by a small table in the restaurant part of the Musashi station, looking out through a window and admiring the zeppelin. She had a cup of tea in her hand and was waiting for her older, more experienced partner.

The two additions to the security of Ah-Un were a reiki user and a fighter, just like the pair already working there. To gain experience the new pair was split and assigned to the older one. This way Kagome ended up being Inuyasha's partner. She was going to provide the reiki assistance while he was going to use his skills in battle - and youki, as she assumed.

It was a bit exciting to know she was going to work alongside a man.

A very handsome, strong, silent and usually borderline rude man with the most adorable ears.

Kagome and Sango haven't had a chance to spend much time with Miroku and Inuyasha, but Kagome already had them somewhat figured out. They had traveled to the Western Palace, known also as the Sky Palace, since it was located almost on top of a small mountain. But during that trip she had been merely an observer, trying to memorize what was going to be expected of her.

As a woman she knew many would be watching her carefully. Women weren't security officers, shrine maidens should be working at some shrine or in a hospital, not guarding airships. But to Kagome duties of a miko tending to a shrine or to sick, even while being noble and good, felt also pretty dull. Every girl could be a shrine maiden, sweeping yards and cooking soup. She had a great potential, her ancestors granted her big reiki level, she had the personality of a fighter, the desire to protect.

"Jasmine tea?" Kagome was pulled back to the realty by a deep voice and turned her head to look at the magnificent sight that was the younger brother of the Western Lord, Inuyasha, called by many Taisho, as a nod to his late father's title of the Great General of the Dog Youkai. Nowadays, in the age of peace and enlightenment, the youkai had no regular army, so there was no need for Lord Sesshomaru to employ a general, but the head of his security team was probably the closest thing to a general. Besides, the miko was sure that the Lord could assemble as many soldiers as he wanted if he wanted to wage a war. And his stubborn, powerful hanyou would probably be close to the top rank in the army. But those who called Inuyasha Taisho referred rather to his personality - he was the one barking orders, the one who wanted to know everything related to his field of action, who made decisions and created strategies.

Rumors had it he sometimes even had an audacity to challenge Lord Sesshomaru's authority.

And now he was standing by her table, his black uniform contrasting with his white hair, his face twisted in a mild scowl, that seemed to be his usual expression. He had his hands resting on his hips, which indicated he wasn't really annoyed.

"Good morning, Inuyasha," Kagome stood up and greeted her superior. "Yes, I brought some with me, since the restaurant hadn't had it. I quite enjoy the taste and mister Hojo was kind enough to brew it for me."

"Feh," Inuyasha's ears twitched. "Finish your tea, we're departing soon. I sensed Sesshomaru coming back from the dumb council. He should be here in ten minutes and we better be on that ship or he whips us with his youki whip. And it's leaving ugly scars, especially on delicate human skin."

Kagome glared at the hanyou, who smirked. She realized he was merely teasing her, in his own rough way. The miko obediently finished her ta, promising herself to settle the score at some later date.

"Here, all done," she put the cup on the table for a servant to find and followed the hanyou, who was already making his way to the door. She caught up to him outside and walked beside him. Normally, women weren't supposed to walk beside men, unless they were wed to them, but it looked like Inuyasha didn't mind. The ear closest to her swiveled her way and she fought back the desire to pet it. This would be out of line, even for her.

"Do you predict any trouble?" she inquired as they neared the airship. The hanyou looked skywards.

"Hard to tell. If anything wants to attack us it will do it when we're in the air, so we can't call on the ground support," he said with the calmness of someone who had experienced a lot during his work. "Probably when we reach the mountain range."

Kagome nodded her understanding and Inuyasha led her inside and to the security room. Kagome sat by the window so she could watch the Lord's arrival, Inuyasha went to check on something.

As Inuyasha had predicted soon a carriage bearing the West's crest came to stop near the airship. A tall youkai in white came out, his flowing hair much like Inuyasha's. A kappa was following the Lord as he crossed the field, carrying a big bag filled with documents. Another carriage came from another direction, a woman and a girl leaving it, but Kagome didn't pay much attention to them, instead focusing on the Lord.

She knew his looks, he had been often on the pictures in newspapers. Still, seeing one of the daiyoukai in real was a thrilling experience. She could sense his youki from her spot and she knew he was hiding most of his power. He moved with a predatory grace, looking regal and cold.

"Ah, Lord Perfect's finally here," she jumped when she heard Inuyasha behind her. He sounded... bitter. She looked at the hanyou standing close enough that she could touch him if she reached a hand. He was glaring at her.

"What's perfect about being a man, who constantly changes his mistresses, not willing to commit, but leading women on?" she asked, then covered her mouth with a hand, paling. "Please, forgive me, I should've spoken so-"

Inuyasha's laughter gave her a pause. Kagome, frozen by the vastness of her comment's rudeness, blinked up at the proud man, who's loyalty to his half-brother was almost legendary (no doubt a part of his inu youkai nature) who now was laughing at her utterly rude and out-of-place comment on his lord's lifestyle.

But those golden eyes looked at her with warmth that hadn't been there before, warming her and making her relax almost on instinct.

"True, he doesn't keep one woman at his side for too long," he nodded. "But most of them are just gold diggers anyway."

"So, it is alright to make a woman a mistress and then leave for another?" Kagome suddenly felt like she was going to explode.

"Nah," the hanyou seemed not to notice the tone of her voice. "But it's not like he's breaking their hearts. They stick to him by their own free will, wanting his wealth and power, not bothering to want him."

Kagome's ire disappeared in a blink of an eye. Inuyasha was looking t his brother disappearing behind the airship, his face sad.

"He was in love once, but his beloved was betrothed to another. And despite his wealth, status and power, he couldn't do nothing to prevent the marriage."

"But... How?" Kagome couldn't believe her own ears. Lord Sesshomaru had been in love with someone and lost her - this wasn't included in any biographic article on the Lord of the Western Youkai.

"She married the Emperor," Inuyasha finally looked at her, his expression passive, but sorrow for his brother shining in his eyes for a moment. "Not long after that she was assassinated. Since her he never fell in love again. Sometimes I think he has so many mistress because he wants to forget about the one woman he wanted and couldn't get. He isn't a person who lets others in his heart easily in general."

"Oh," Kagome whispered, feeling sorry for the Lord who always appeared so cold and who - now she knew - had been hiding a wounded heart behind this wall of ice for all those years.

Suddenly the door to the room swung open and a chirpy voice exclaimed.

"Uncle Inu!"

To Kagome's shock a human girl bounced into the room. She appeared to be around eight years old, with long black hair and wide smile on her face as she ran to hug the gruff hanyou's leg. She wore a robe of the finest silk, with a yellow and orange pattern on it, that only enhanced the joyful energy practically radiating from her petite body.

"Lady Kagura took me to an ice cream place! I had ice cream and the nice lady there said I'm cute!"

"Hi there, kid," Inuyasha laid a hand on her head, all traces of his earlier melancholy vanished. "Meet Kagome, she's our miko. You see something you don't like or get scared, go to her. Kagome, this is Rin, the cute Lady Ward of the Western Youkai's Lord."

As if only now noticing Kagome the girl hid behind Inuyasha's leg.

"Hello," she said, suddenly shy and silent. Kagome realized it was the legendary Rin, the girl the lord protected and shielded from all harm. She had read about her in a newspaper once or twice, but since the girl was usually staying in the Sky Palace there was little information about her. Besides, the journalists felt there were more interesting topics to write about than a little girl.

"Hello, Lady Rin, it's nice to meet you,"

"Miss Kagome," Rin still held Inuyasha's pants in her hand, but looked a bit less shy. "You can call me Rin."

"Alright, but you have to cal me Kagome," the miko gave her an easy smile. She missed the rather fond look that Inuyasha gave her before patting Rin's head when she nodded.

"Okay, you said hi, now get back to Sesshomaru before he sends Jaken after you," he pushed the girl towards the door. "We're going home soon."

"But I want to stay with you, uncle," Rin gave the hanyou a puppy expression. To Kagome's surprise the stern man didn't even put a fight.

"Okay, but first you have to report to Sesshomaru and you can stay only for a half of an hour. Then your uncle has to work," he caved in. Rin squealed happily and ran to get her permission for her lord.

"And here's the mighty Taisho made to change his orders," Kagome commented. Inuyasha scowled at her.

"Don't think you can get away with something like that, miko," he warned her.

Chapter Text

0. The Fool - Shippou
1. The Magician - Miroku -
2. The High Priestess - Midoriko
3. The Empress - Sesshomaru's Mother (or Mrs. Higurashi)
4. The Emperor - Inu no Taisho
5. The Hierophant - Grandpa Higurashi
6. The Lovers - Inuyaha & Kagome
7. The Chariot - Kirara
8. Strength - Sesshomaru
9. The Hermit - Mushin (or Kaede)
10. Wheel of Fortune - Shikon no Tama
11. Justice - Kohaku
12. The Hanged Man - Kikyou
13. Death - Soul Piper
14. Temperance - Kagura Hitomiko
15. The Devil - Naraku
16. The Tower - Kagone
17. The Star - Kaede
18. The Moon - Kouga
19. The Sun - Inuyasha
20. Judgement - Sango
21. The World - The Sacred Tree

Chapter Text

"Stay still,"

"Yes."

"And don't talk," she giggled and leaned in, her hand coming closer to the sitting girl's face. With swift, precise movements of her fingers and wrist she did what she wanted and moved a bit away to watch the result.

The seated girl wore a white kimono, but this one wasn't solid, it had little flowers scattered across her sleeves and back. Flower-decorated pins were holding her pale hair in a simple, but dashing hair do. Her lips were now pink like cherry blossoms and her dark, empty eyes were lived up with some color as well.

"You look lovely," Kagura smiled and reached for a bottle of perfumes.

"You think so? I am glad," the monotone whisper was barely audible, but Kagura knew her friend. Kanna looked down to the mirror she held and tilted her head a little. She didn't smile, but Kagura didn't need to see a smile on her face to know she was elated. She sprayed some perfume on her and gave a sharp nod.

"Now, you're ready. Have fun," she reminded the girl, who bowed and left the room, moving slightly faster than usual. She giggled and covered her mouth with a hand before calling after her. "And remind that boy he has to bring you back before midnight!"

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was stuck.

It was - obviously - Kagome's fault he was stuck in her home like this. She had insisted on him letting her wash his robe in her futuristic spinning box.

The reason why he had let her do this had nothing to do with the miko's puppy eyes. He had been planning on washing his robe anyway, so why not to let her do this if she wanted it so much?

The result was that he had to wear a pair of modern day pants and a shirt, both too tight in his opinion.

So he sat in the living room, scowling and pretending he was watching the stupid talking box with the old man, while in fact he was plotting his wicked revenge, as any youkai would.

He decided it would be a repeat of what he had done the last time. It was just recently, actually. They had fought a huge snail youkai, who wasn't very fast, but pretty hard to kill. Well, it had been hard because Inuyasha had been holding back (reasonably, he wouldn't let it hurt his friends) until Kagome had had a clear shot at the snail and had sent an arrow at it. He had let the miko watch the arrow fly while he had jumped behind a boulder before the projectile had pierced the skin of the snail...

As Kagome would say it - the shit had hit the fan. Or, in that case - the snail.

Even Sango and Kirara, who had been flying overhead had been caught in the... fallout.

So yeah, Inuyasha was going to find another slimy and ugly youkai for Kagome to defeat.

He was so caught up in his planning that he noticed Mrs. Higurashi was in the room only when she spoke to him and her father-in-law.

"I will make some noise for a minute," she said apologetically and the old man just nodded. Inuyasha watched her put a big box on the floor. It was blue and had colorful buttons on top of it. As he watched the woman attached to it a long, bendable tube to it, before pulling a rope out of it and attaching it to a small thing on the wall. So fat there wasn't much noise and Inuyasha was mildly curious what the thing was. It didn't look like something one used to cook.

Then Mrs. Higurashi pressed the button and - let's say it that way - a hanyou hit the ceiling. As the unholy howl broke the silence in the room the hanyou almost dug his claws in the spot next to the chandelier.

In a blink of an eye Inuyasha almost magically found himself in a dark, a bit dusty place, pretty narrow one. From his spot he could see a carpet i n Kagome's room and the lower parts of the furniture. And Kagome's feet as she moved in her chair.

The most horrible and annoying noise in the world was a bit muffled by the floor on which he was sprawled, but he still could hear it pretty well. He was panting and his heart was pounding, his ears plastered to his head in distress.

Then he saw Kagome's face as the girl knelt by her bed and peered underneath it.

"Inuyasha?" she inquired.

"What is that thing?" he coughed, because he inhaled some of the dust.

"What thing?" she blinked at him.

"Don't play dumb! The sound monster your mother unleashed on us!"

"Sound monster?" Kagome listened carefully. Then she started to giggle.

"Oi!" barked the dark space under her bed, with two yellow eyes glaring at her.

"That's a vacuum, silly," she managed out. "It won't hurt you."

'Scratch it,' the hanyou growled. 'Make it two slimy youkai and no hot spring in walk able distance.'

Chapter Text

It was a sunny afternoon, one that tempted people to just lay in the grass and doze off for a while in a shade of a tree.

So that was what Inuyasha and his friends did.

Everyone needed a bit rest, especially because Sango's daughters were with uncle Kohaku and Kirara and her son was sleeping too. So, they just wanted to take their chance.

They all found nice spots around the Sacred Tree and talked for a while, but then they fell asleep.

A dark shadow peeked from behind a tree and smirked as it saw the gang fast asleep. Even Inuyasha's ears were lax and not moving, unless there was a loud noise.

The shadow crept forward.

An hour later Kagome woke up, pleasantly relaxed and ready to tackle the rest of the day. Until she looked around.

Sango had her hair in a thick braid.

Miroku had two little ponytails on both sides of his head.

And Inuyasha, who was looking now at her with a playful, affectionate smirk, had two intricate braids starting under his ears. Obviously he wasn't aware of his dashing new hair do.

Kagome started to giggle and felt a gust of wind caress her neck. She froze and carefully reached up... To find a neat bun located a bit to the left to the top of her head. She made a face and heard Inuyasha chuckling.

"Don't undo it, Rin would be sad if you did," he murmured and sat up. And then he took notice of his own looks and cursed loudly, waking up the other couple and making Kagome laugh as she reached for his hands before he could undo the braids.

Somewhere not that far away, on top of a hill, a certain little girl cackled in mirth.

Chapter Text

Miroku woke up in the middle of the night, feeling trapped and unable to move. In a moment of panic he looked around the room and found no youkai attacking or trapping him. Still, for a moment he didn't know what was squeezing him with iron force.

Then he sighed and relaxed when he saw Sango, sleeping peacefully with her head on his chest.

During those first weeks of their marriage Miroku had learned one interesting thing about his lovely wife.

She was a cuddly person. And he replaced Hiraikotsu as her body pillow.

Murmuring in her sleep Sango moved her leg higher across his legs.

Not that he was complaining.

Chapter Text

A group of people was walking carefully after their guide, a tiny man in traditional robes. He was leading then down a narrow path between small pools and ponds, making sure to stop every time they were next to an interesting one.

The whole valley was full of various bodies of water, different in shape and size, it looked like cheese with holes.

"What's this one?" asked a teenage boy, pointing to a pond partially hidden behind bushes, one near the edge of the valley. The guide looked at it and hummed, remembering. Then he nodded.

"Ah, this one, young master. That is a very unfortunate one. There is a very sad story. You see, roughly five centuries ago there was a youkai tormenting a nearby village. A group of youkai exterminators was passing by and was hired to deal with the youkai," the guide said in his monotone voice, the group gathering around him to listen to the tale.

"They fought the youkai up the hillside," the guide pointed to the forest-covered hill towering over the valley. "But there was no bamboo forest growing there at that tine. It was very unfortunate, because when they killed the youkai it exploded and it's entrails covered the hillside."

"Eww!" exclaimed the gathering. The guide nodded.

"Indeed, it was pretty gross. And so, the group of exterminators slipped on the ground and tumbled all the way down," he pointed to the pond. "The first one to fell to the pond was the hanyou, followed by the miko, the monk and the youkai exterminator. It was very, very unfortunate that they killed the youkai in the valley, since the magic here was activated."

"Oh!" some of the listeners covered their mouth.

"Yes. The magic was awake, so when the exterminators emerged from the water they were all turned hanyou," the guide nodded sagely. "It's a very sad story of four hanyou. And so the pond is know as the Pond of the Hanyou. Whoever falls in the water shall be turned into a hanyou, so you must be very careful not to trip and share this sad, sad fate."

The group moved on and only the teenager remained back, smirking as he looked at the pond.

"And that explains why sis had ears the last time she came back home," Souta murmured and went after the group.

Chapter Text

Kagome was running, trying to keep up with the battle and get a shot at the youkai without getting in the way of others.

They had came to a village terrorized by a youkai and had been asked to deal with it. The youkai had attacked mere hours after that and they had decided to move the fight from the village to avoid destruction.

The youkai was a huge frog with green skin with brown dots. It was hard to hit it, because it was pretty fast and jumping in a big leaps. With every attack it was spitting a big blob of some nasty brown liquid that was now splattered across the hillside where they were fighting. It was quite a feat to dodge the flying blobs and not trip on the already fallen ones. And all that while paying attention to a boomerang, gusts of strong winds sucking you towards Miroku and Inuyasha's... Well, Inuyasha in general.

Still, Kagome prided herself to be the one who was the least covered in goo. As she ran after the frog, an arrow at ready, she thought that it was very fortunate that the villagers had been asked to prepare a bath for them all for after the battle.

Finally they got a clear shot at the frog. At the same time it got struck by the Hiraikotsu, Kagome's arrow and a Kaze no Kizu. To say it was an overkill would be an overstatement.

"Fuck!" Inuyasha screamed when the frog rained on them. Kagome gasped when she felt the rain of mildly warm goo covering her hair and running down her back. She wiped her face and saw that the whole area was generously covered in a coating of entrails and unnamed liquids.

"Well, good that it's over," Sango said, shaking her head. She looked to her boomerang, sticking out of a pile of internal organs. It was dripping.

Miroku made sure his beads were secure around his right hand as he started to walk towards them from the top of the hill. Then he slipped on some goo. He grabbed Sango's elbow while stumbling down the slick path, in an attempt to steady himself. Sadly, with a gasp of surprise at being touched, she let go of the slippery boomerang she had been trying to pull out from the ground. Kagome slung her bow over her shoulder and tried to wipe some of the frog from herself while approaching Inuyasha. She relaxed, glad that the battle was finally over. They all really needed a bath. Inuyasha sheathed Tessaiga after wiping it on a patch of miraculously clean grass.

"Okay, let's go get to the village," the hanyou said, grimacing at the stuff covering his feet. "We all need a ba-"

And that was when he noticed what was coming his way. With a bark of surprise Inuyasha tried to jump to the side, but it was already too late - the approaching ball containing a startled exterminator, stunned miko and shocked monk collected him on its way downhill.

And downhill they all went, passing by a staring cat youkai and speechless kitsune, who had ducked under a thick bush to hide from the frog rain. The patch of bushes that grew at the foot of the hill did nothing to stop or even slow the speed of the ball. Shippou and Kirara looked at each other when they heard a splash from the other side of the bushes. They looked at each other and jumped over the bushes.

There was a field of pools and ponds behind the greenery and their friends had fell into one of those ponds.

"At least they'll rinse some of that stuff," Shippou said when he saw his friends rising to the surface.

Inuyasha had been the first one to hit the water, which was pretty fortunate, because he was the toughest one. He also was the first one to swim to the shore, dragging Kagome up and behind himself. Sango followed him and Miroku was the last one, weighted down by his robes, but managing to overcome that issue without having to discard his clothes.

"Feh!" Inuyasha crouched down and shook vigorously as soon as he made sure Kagome was on the dry ground and the rest was getting out of the water too.

"Oh, goodness," Kagome gasped and shook her head, trying to brush her hair away from her face.

"Are you okay, guys?" Shippou and Kirara landed near them when Inuyasha straightened his back. The pair of youkai skidded to a stop and gaped at their bigger friends yet again, but for a different reason. Inuyasha pretty fast joined their little club of startled youki users when he took another glance at his other soaked friends.

Miroku was sitting on the ground, wringing the heavy folds of his robe. His black ears of a raccoon dog were twitching in annoyance. Sango was threading her fingers through her hair, trying to brush off of it some of the thick goo. Her feline tail was swishing behind her back and beating lightly against the grass. Kagome... Inuyasha took a deep breath. Kagome was kneeling in her totally ruined school uniform and was looking back at him, holding her canine ears with both hands. The ears were black with rusty tips and were giving her a mischievous look.

"What the hell?" he wanted to scream, but it came out more like a breathless whisper. And then he inhaled. "Damn," the dog hanyou squatted in front of Kagome, unable to turn his eyes or nose away from her.

"Inuyasha...?" Kagome whispered and blushed, lowering her hands to her chest, blushing at the attention she was getting from the silver-haired boy.

"What's wrong with us?" Miroku asked, looking at both the girls. Shippou and Kirara remained where they stood, unsure about the sudden change of their friends. Sango moved closer to Kagome, her movements graceful as ever. She reached up and tweaked an ear. She giggled when Kagome squeaked and jumped to hide behind Inuyasha, a black tail with red tip bristling behind her back. Shippou gasped when he saw it. Meanwhile Sango noticed her tail and grabbed it.

"I have a tail!" she exclaimed and pointed to Kagome. "And you do too, beside having ears!"

"You're kitsune, Kagome!" the little boy giggled happy that his adoptive mother had a tail, even if he didn't know why. Inuyasha outstretched a hand to help Kagome steady herself in her crouch beside him.

"Ah, poor, valiant youths," sighed a male voice from the side. Everyone looked that way and saw a tiny, thin man in plain clothing. "You are very, very unfortunate, indeed."

"What are you talking about?" Inuyasha barked, his confusion turning into annoyance.

"Please, tell us, do you know what happened to us?" Miroku asked and rose to his feet.

"This a sad, sad happening to you," the man nodded sagely. "You see, this area is the valley of cursed ponds. When I saw you battling the vile youkai terrorizing the nearby village I hurried to warn you, but alas, I came too late."

"Warn us about what?" Sango tilted her head and gave up on tying her hair back, letting it fall loose on her back instead

"I take this that the hanyou fell into the pond first," the stranger pointed at Inuyasha, who scowled at him. "You see, the water in those pools is cursed. If something falls into the water then whatever falls afterwards will change to be like the first one. Since the hanyou fell into the pond now whoever will fall into it will change in one as well. It's a very sad, sad event indeed."

"Can we undo this spell? Or maybe the curse disappears in time?" Miroku asked after a moment of absorbing that information. The man shook his head.

"It's very unfortunate, but no, there is no cure. You will remain hanyou forever. There are pools like those on the continent, where the curse can be lifted temporarily if special requirements are met, but those are permanent." The stranger explained. "My wife's family guards that place."

Inuyasha's ears drooped and he looked guiltily at his friends, who now had to share his fate of an outcast.

"I'm sorry," he apologized without any prompting. After all if he hadn't been the one first in the water they wouldn't be hanyou now...

Kagome wrapped her arms around him and nuzzled his jaw while Miroku was helping Sango to her feet and trying to investigate her tail, which was resulted in Sango hissing at him and jumping a few feet away from him, landing surely on her feet.

"Don't be sorry, Inuyasha," Kagome smiled. "We'll work things out."

Inuyasha looked at her with some hope, daring to believe her this time and hoping that they could make this to their benefit, somehow. His friends weren't shouting at him so far, so maybe they could accept their fate. He glanced to the man standing nearby and looking at them sadly. Shippou jumped to Inuyasha's shoulder, distracting him for a while.

"That's great! Now you can do kitsune tricks with me! And Sango can probably do even more invincible fighting! And Miroku can play tricks with me too!"

Kagome grinned at the dog hanyou. It would be a lie to say that she wasn't shocked and unsure about things. But it was going to be fine.

Besides, judging by the struck look that had been on Inuyasha's face a few minutes earlier, he wasn't disgusted by her new looks. She wondered if he'd like to play a little chasing the fox in some near future.

Chapter Text

Sango looked down at herself and tried to pull the hem of her short skirt down to hide her shapely legs. She blushed when she saw Miroku almost drooling where he stood a few paces away, next to Kagome dressed in her kimono and pouting.

"Uh,,, Inuyasha..." Sango said, the hanyou stepped in front of her and glared at Miroku.

"Get your shit together!" he barked. "Kirara! Shippou! On your posts!"

The two little youkai jumped to Miroku and Kagome's shoulders before rolling their eyes.

The gang was on the edge of Kouga's territory and Inuyasha had made a wager against Kagome that Kouga's feelings towards her weren't that deep or honest. He had claimed the wolf wasn't really paying attention to her, that he wanted only her shards and that he had no knowledge about the girl he claimed to love. Kagome, on the other side, while pointing out she wasn't interested in the wolf, had stated that Kouga had feeling for her and it'd hurt his feelings if she just discarded his confessions. Inuyasha had promised to stop bothering Kagome about her going home if she was right while Kagome promised to bring more ramen if he was.

Thus Sango was dressed in Kagome's clothing, with shikon shards around her neck, while Kagome was pretending to be the youkai exterminator. The former was torn between being amused and embarrassed while the latter was annoyed and determined to prove the hanyou was wrong. Shippou and Kirara were going to enjoy the next few minutes no matter what the outcome would be.

Miroku didn't care, he just liked to see Sango's bare legs.

"Okay, act normal!" Inuyasha demanded when they all saw the familiar tornado coming their way. Kagome bit her bottom lip while Sango looked anxiously at Inuyasha, who stepped in between her and the approaching wolf.

"Oi, Kouga!" he called. Kouga as usual, didn't stop before he could run over him. Then he leaped to stand in front of his love and grab her hands.

"Oh, dear Kagome, you look especially radiant today!" he exclaimed. "You look even prettier than the last time I saw you! I mean it! You kinda looked pale and feeble, but now look at you, at your rosy cheeks! And you look like you lost some weight too!"

"Kouga..." the girl stared at him in disbelief and he flashed her a dazzling smile.

"I'm speaking the truth, beloved. So, are you ready to come to live with me?"

"You bastard," Inuyasha picked himself from the ground, which prompted Kouga to point at him and lean closer to his love.

"Isn't this the moment you sit him?" he inquired playfully, enjoying the blush on the girl's cheeks.

"S-Sit him?" the girl squeaked. Kouga smirked when with the corner of his eye he saw Inuyasha dropping to the ground. But there was no glow of the beads and no thud followed by cursing.

Instead the Hiraikotsu came on the wolf's head.

"See?" Inuyasha snickered from where he was crouching close to the ground, looking at the unconscious wolf. Kagome was panting heavily and was glaring daggers at Kouga. She send a dark look Inuyasha's way, so the hanyou decided it'd be wise not to press her more right now.

"We see," Miroku spoke for the first time since Sango had came out from behind the bushes where she had swapped clothes with Kagome. "So long and shapely... I wish I could wear them like an obi..."

Shippou barely had time to jump from his shoulder before the exterminator knocked the monk out.

Chapter Text

Kagome ran down the corridor. It was not lady-like to run, but she didn't care.

"Taisho!" she called out as she ran into the security room. The hanyou was looking out of the window.

"They're far away still, we have a few minutes before their birds catch up to us," he growled. Kagome walked closer to him to look at a distant group of huge birds that had flew out of a cave in a mountainside while Ah-Un had been passing by the mountain range.

"I escorted Lady Rin to the lord's side," she reported and went to fetch her bow. She felt her belly tighten in anticipation and anxiety, that was going to be her first battle.

"You don't leave the gondola," Inuyasha reminded her. She turned around to see him looking straight at her with his golden eyes, frowning, but not scowling. "And aim for the birds. The wolves can't fly and they're too small to get a sure hit from a big distance. And we don't want them get too close."

"I know," Kagome swallowed. Both the birds and the wolves who made up the bandit group, were sentient beings, but she knew that it was her job to defend the airship. She wasn't going to kill innocent beings, but ruthless people who wouldn't hesitate to harm her. Still, she wasn't heartless and the knowledge she'd be sending people to fall from the sky didn't sit well with her. She knew it was her job, but she didn't enjoy killing.

She gasped when a hand covered her fingers gripping her bow. When she looked up from a calloused, clawed hand she saw his yellow eyes soften for a moment before looking at her sternly.

"You mikos are always so soft-heated," he muttered. "Believe me, those wolves, who choose to assault travelers, are not worth your concern," she opened her mouth to say something, but he shook his head. "I know, they're living beings. But believe me, if they catch you or any other girl that is on Ah-Un, you will not die soon. Rin's young age wouldn't stop them, nor would your robes of a holy maiden. They chose this life and by doing so they forfeit their right to be treated like normal citizens, because they no longer are. Keep that in mind."

His hand squeezed hers for a moment before leaving. She felt cold when his grip on her loosened. Still, it helped her to deal with her anxiety and concerns, so she took a deep breath and looked straight into his eyes.

"I am here to protect the passengers of Ah-Un against any and all who attack us," she stated. "I will pray for those who will pass to the underworld today, but I won't hesitate to do my duty."

A small smirk curled the corners of his mouth upwards.

"Good," he gave a nod and turned to go to his post. But before he could leave the room Kagome grabbed his hand. Surprised he looked back at her.

"I... Just be safe, Taisho," she managed a small smile. His eyes widened for a second before he scoffed.

"Keh! No low-life wolf can hurt me."

Ten minutes later the attack started. Kagome was shooting arrow after arrow, not having time to look after the bandits falling to meet the ground and flailing their limbs in their descent, screaming. Blasts of her reiki infused arrows were taking the flying creatures out of the sky in balls of brilliant pink light.

But it was hard to aim for most of the time, since the whole airship was shaking from the force of the battle on the other side, where Inuyasha was handling his own part of the gang.

That was the reason why she couldn't hit the bird that was much more agile than the rest. It was annoying, since it was bigger than them too. And after a while it was the last one, coming dangerously close to the airship. And it was enraged by the destruction of its flock, readying its talons to tear open the balloon holding Ah-Un suspended in the sky. It didn't care for the wolves, as it shook its riders long ago while dodging one of Kagome's arrows. And the miko had only a few projectiles left...

She bit her bottom lip, desperately trying to predict the bird's movements to send another arrow. It was gaining attitude and she realized it wanted to hide from her behind the bulk of the balloon.

"No!" she yelled and shot her arrow at the spot just above it, managing to purify one of it's wings.

At the same time a yellow burst of youki flew from somewhere above her and decimated the creature before it could do more than shriek.

Kagome gasped and reached for an arrow when a second later a man appeared in the window, not even a foot away from her.

"Good job, Kagome," Inuyasha said as he entered the room via the window and sheathed his huge katana. "Don't screw it up by killing me now."

"Inu... Inuyasha!" Kagome felt her legs go limp and she quickly found a chair to sit on. A wave of relief washed over her and she tried to calm down, letting go of her bow and just looking at her superior.. His hair was even more messy than usual, but he looked unharmed. He probably noticed her assessing him, because he crossed his arms and scowled.

"I told you, no pesky wolf can hurt me. Now, you catch some breath and I'll go report to the lord and bring some coffee," he offered, seeing how pale the girl was. But before he left he gave her another of his rare smiles.

"I hope Miroku gets along with Sango, because I'm keeping you," he announced before going out of the room.

And for some reason Kagome felt a flock of butterflies when she saw him give her a real smile and say those words.

Chapter Text

Kagome looked around and took a deep breath. She saw her friends looking at her from their spots, tense, ready to spring into action at a sign of her hand.

This was it, the final battle. She looked at Inuyasha last, his back straight, his ears perked, his eyes intense and focused. A fang was peeking from under his lip. His fists tightened and loosened as he shared looks with his team. Cold wind was blowing near, shaking trees and rattling loose parts of the buildings.

"And so, the heroes were deep down the dreadful dungeon under Naraku's castle, ready to face the vile hanyou and end his reign of terror," she muttered.

"Quit stalling, wench!" Inuyasha grumbled.

"I must agree with Inuyasha," Miroku smirked. "We all waited for this for so long."

"Yeah, I still can't believe we're finally here," Sango nodded, smiling.

"Go on, Kagome!" Shippou encouraged her, grasping his fists in front of himself in anxiety and excitement. They had only to break Naraku's barrier and bring him down.

Kagome smiled. It was up to her to break the barrier since Inuyasha's attempt had been fruitless. She closed the object in her hand and focused her will before she threw it in front of herself. It fell on the floor and rolled a couple of centimeters before stopping. Everyone watched it in tense silence as it rolled.

"Yes! Six!" Kagome raised a fist in the air and looked at Kaede, who held a big book. "Did I break the barrier around Naraku's secret room?"

"Yes," Kaede nodded.

"Fuck yeah! We charge in!" Inuyasha exclaimed and sent Kagome a proud smile.

"Wait, let me first perform a blessing so we all are immune to Naraku's insects!" Miroku called and raised a hand. They all nodded and Inuyasha impatiently grabbed the dice to hand it to the monk, so he could roll it and see if the blessing was successful

"You have to roll at least five, Miroku," Kaede warned from her spot next to the board after seeking out the spell chapter of the book she held.

"No pressure, huh?" Miroku sighed and rolled the dice.

Outside of Kaede's hut the winter winds were howling their mournful song of the darkest and most gloomy part of the season. Inside, the group of friends was laughing and bickering over a board.

Chapter Text

The evening sky was cloudless, the air full of wonderful scents of the wild life. Kagome would love to sit upon the soft grass and just enjoy herself, but she couldn't.

A howl - a too-close-to-her-location howl - tore through the tranquility of the forest, causing the birds singing in the branches over her head to froze silent.

There was a predator on the loose. One hunting.

And the miko was his prey.

Kagome didn't bother looking back, she just speed up, trying not to lose her footing as she ran through the thick forest, pushing past the bushes and ducking under branches. There was no time to dawdle, there was no use to cover up her tracks.

There was nothing she could do to mask her scent and the predator hunting her had a superior sense of smell. All her hope was in reaching an unassuming dry well...

Kagome ran out of the trees and into a wide meadow where colorful flowers swayed on the breeze. The glade housing the well was close.

"Ka-Go-Me!" and so was the predator. With a cry of distress the girl doubled her efforts. The sound of her pursuer calling her name like that made her heart beat faster.

But alas, as she was almost to the other end of the meadow, a red blur came to block her way. Kagome skidded to a stop, her wide eyes taking in the visage of her pursuer - the wild mane of white hair, red robes concealing the lean muscles of his body, clawed hands outstretched to grab her...

"Now, wench," his inhuman eyes glowed from behind his bangs. "Be a good girl and quit running. You know you can't win..."

Kagome gulped and pressed her hands to her chest, before jumping to her left, hoping against all hope that she could outrun the dog hanyou.

Inuyasha didn't move for a second, but his eyes flashed. Then he pounced.

"No!" Kagome exclaimed as she went down, pushed into the soft, fragrant grass by the hanyou that landed on top of her.

"Inuyasha!" called Miroku from somewhere far behind them in the forest.

"I think he got her!" came Shippou's cry.

"Hurry!" Sango sounded urgent.

Kagome was panting after her run, trying to shake the hanyou off of her back. She felt him move and sit straddling her waist. Then he howled again, the sound of victory, of captured prey, of exhilarating chase and his prey down.

Her heart skipped a beat when the melodious song of a wild dog, that shouldn't be possible with normal human's vocal cords, tore through the forest that bore his name.

"And now, miko," he said when he finished his proclamation of victory. "You know what I want. You knew I'll come after it from the very start..."

Kagome squeaked and tried to hold the thing she held in her grasp closer to herself, as if it could help her. Two strong hands grasped her shoulders and she was laying on her back in no time, looking up at the man she loved so dearly as he pried her fist open. His smile was a mix of a boyish grin and a wicked youkai smirk, his ears perked up, his eyes fixed on her hands...

Kagome tried to struggle against him, but she was too weak and their friends were too far to be of any help. Soon the white-haired boy held his prize high above his head. He carefully brought the round object close to his face to inspect it. Then he grinned and quickly devoured it.

A rain of crumbs fell on Kagome's face, the miko watching the expression of pure bliss and pleasure on his face. Golden eyes lashed playfully as he glanced at her, as if challenging her, his lips quivering before a wide, real smile spread across them.

Kagome found herself unable to scold the gluttonous boy for eating the last oreo. Not when he looked at her like that.

Chapter Text

Naraku appeared in front of the gathering of his foes, laughing wickedly. He spread his hands and other limbs in a threatening manner.

"It is I, Naraku!" he exclaimed. "Look at me and fear my terrifying power!"

He had a whole speech prepared, but to his shock no one was listening to him. He gaped at the group of misfits.

"I liked when he had tentacles," Miroku said. "I'm sure they were fun to play with. I'd like to have tentacles."

"I'm sure you had something perverted in mind," Sango glared at him, then glanced at Naraku, standing on his stone and glaring at them all. "White horns? Really, who has white horns after the Osaka Incident?"

"I think they look okay against the color of his hair," Kagome said. "But they have nothing on Inuyasha's ears."

"A scaled armor? This one is shocked that he has to kill such poorly equipped foe," Sesshomaru sneered.

"Yeah, it's a fashion suicide," Inuyasha nodded. "I've not seen those in decades."

"I liked more when he wore purple." Shippou said. "Blue is obviously not his color.""

"And it also helps you look mysterious and dangerous to ladies," Miroku ran his hand down the front of his robe. "Add some black and you complete the visage of an intelligent, yet secretive fellow. No lady could pass you if you wore black and purple." He sent a blinding grin Sango's way, but the extermimator was too busy wrinkling her nose at Naraku's footwear - sandals and stripped socks.

"No wonder he can't get laid.." Kouga muttered from his spot to the side.

"Hey!" Naraku screamed. "Can we focus on what's important now?!"

"We already do. You look too pathetic to kill, go change your form," Inuyasha crossed his arms in front of his chest, refusing to draw Tessaiga.

"You could wear something red," Kagome suggested. "Red is so dashing, especially with white." She glanced to the side where Inuyasha stood, preening in his fire rat robe. The girl blushed.

"And you could tie your hair back," Sango added, cringing. "Right now as it hangs in those curls, it looks greasy. And the horns really need to go."

"Change your outfit," Kikyou said with a look of disgust on her face.

"I hate you with all my hate," Naraku mumbled as he slid down his rock to go and change.

Chapter Text

He ran. He ran like his life depended on it.

He had always thought her time was a safe place. It had its fair amount of dangers like fires and metal carriages, quite similar in nature to the cities from his time.

According to her the mall was supposed to be as safe as a rice field.

According to him it was nothing similar to a rice field.

There were hundreds of humans, he even smelled some youkai, but distant and not really a threat. There were multiple sounds and smells that begged for his attention and he couldn't name them. In fifteen minutes in being in that blasted place he got a headache of his life. And there were tons of items, some flashing lights, some moving, some just laying or hanging in great quantities.

He had grit his teeth and had followed her to a clothing store, where she had picked up some robes and had went to try them, while he had been supposed to stay nearby. Kagome, a person who wanted him to explore and discover, hadn't forbid him from leaving the close proximity of the tiny changing chamber. So, after a few minutes of standing there and being stared at, he had wandered off.

He had been annoyed by all the people staring at him. After all, for this outing he had donned a modern set of clothing: a black leather pants, a black jacket and plain red shirt. He even had a red scarf tied around his head to hide his ears and a pair of sandals on his feet. So why those girls had been staring at him?

He had found out pretty fast, just when he had stopped near a food shop and had looked at the menu to choose what he'd like for lunch late. That was when he had been surrounded by a pack of vicious individuals with shining eyes, rosy cheeks and bright clothing. They had smelled human, but no human before had looked at him with the look of a starved wolf seeing a goose in a ditch.

"Hey, Scrumptious! Don't be shy, we just want to know you better!" called some girl behind him. Inuyasha didn't waste time to look back and see which one it was. He didn't care, he just wanted to find a safe place.

He ran though a few flights of stairs, dodging startled people on his way, but the flock of harpies was hot on his heels.

How humans could keep up to a hanyou, anyway? And they were not out of breath yet, able to call after him, demanding his name, relationship status, if he had a brother and his phone number.

He made a daring turn and jumped between racks with clothes hanging on them, the colorful garments just a blur as he passed. The heavy brown curtain fell behind him before the lead harpy stepped into the shop he was hiding in.

"Hey, don't run away from us, we just want to talk!" she called, scanning the place. Inuyasha was peeking through a tiny gap between the curtain and the wall.

"'Yeah, right," he muttered, thanking the gods for this shadowy little alcove he could hide in. It was like he had been led to this spot through the whole building floor.

And just as he let out a deep sigh of relief upon seeing the pack leave the shop, he felt the dark aura from somewhere behind him. His ears twitched as the rest of his body froze.

"Inu-Ya-Sha..." came a low, deadly whisper from behind him. He was a brave hanyou, so he looked over his shoulder.

The vision positioned in the corner of the alcove was the most beautiful and threatening sight in his whole life. A girl clad only in her underwear, holding a bunch of clothes against her chest to prevent him from seeing her practically naked flesh. Still, he could see enough of her to keep him up at night for the next week or two. Her brown eyes were practically glowing deadly desires and the frown on her face was usually accompanied by at least six repeats of the command word. The aura of enraged miko was lifting the ends of her hair as if there was a breeze swirling around him.

"Oh, shit."

The mall was anything but a safe place.

Chapter Text

Kaede was an old woman. She had seen a lot of weird stuff.

But what she saw upon entering her hut one day took the top spot in matter of seconds.

There sat Inuyasha, cross-legged and with look of intense focus on his face. He was untangling something from Kagome's hair. The young miko was seated in front of the hanyou, letting him run his claws through her hair while she herself was brushing Sango's dark tresses. A handful of burs was scattered around them. Sango had her hair down, so Kagome could work on it while she was busy making sure there were no burs in Miroku's. The monk sat calmly, letting her work while he was making sure Shippou's tail and mop of orange hair weren't adorned with burs. The kitsune was using his little nimble fingers to rack through Inuyasha's mane.

The whole group was so focused on their respective tasks that they needed a full minute to realize Kaede was standing in the doorway, staring at them.

"A youkai threw us in a bunch of bushes," Kagome said, blushing a little.

"Ah, that's quite alright," the old miko nodded. Then she smiled a little at the rag tag group of friends. "Continue your task, children, I think I'll go for a walk," she said.

"Alright," Sango smirked. "If you see Kirara tell her to join us,I will be able to brush her fur free of the burs as soon as I finish with this," she tugged a strand of Miroku's hair.

"Fair Sango, please, show your gentler side," he pleaded.

"Don't whine, it's all your fault we're like that," Inuyasha grumbled from behind Kagome, smirking secretively as he ran his fingers through her hair. Shippou was silent, thinking if Inuyasha would skin him if he tied a few knots in his mane. He glanced up to his ears plastered to his skull and decided it'd be wiser not to get on his bad side today.

Chapter Text

He looked down at her and smiled when he saw her face relaxed in sleep. He looked around the dark room to find that there was nothing out of place. He carefully left the warmth of the bed and paced to the little crib where their child slept, as peaceful as the woman in the bed.

His ears twitched as he heard the sound that had been the reason he was awake so late at night. It was much closer now. Grabbing his sword as he left the room he walked out of the house, not bothering to place it in his obi.

Four people stood in front of the small house located between the village and the ancient forest. Two were standing a bit behind, the other couple was much closer. The man with a ponytail stepped forward.

"How is she?" he asked, an urgent tone in his voice.

"She's fine," the man standing in front of the house door replied coolly. "But she's tired, so I ain't waking her up just so you can pester her."

The man was about to growl an insult at him, but the red-haired female at his side stepped on his foot.

"How is the cub?" she inquired, spark in her eyes. A real smile appeared on the white-haired man's face for a moment.

"The pup is healthy," he said and smirked when he saw her still looking curiously at him. "His name is Touga."

"Can we see them?" the woman asked.

"They're asleep," the young father grumbled. "Come back after sunrise."

"We will," the other male nodded, his pale eyes looking at the other with intensity that had little to do with hate. "And if she's not happy with you, mutt, I'll personally make sure you..."

"You have some nerve, speaking like that in front of your mate," the white-haired man raised an eyebrow, but the female just shrugged.

"Ayame knows I don't love Kagome anymore. But she's still a close friend and I want her happy," Kouga puffed his chest out in pride.

"Feh, whatever. Come back later and I'll let you see them both," Inuyasha stared before turning to go inside the house and back to his little family.

 

"

Chapter Text

He was a man, who appreciated simple things in life. He didn't need much to be happy, he never craved riches and power.

In his opinion the greatest treasure was beauty - both of body and soul. He appreciated intelligence, cunning and fitness. For him a fair lady who could converse, create art or achieve great feats of strength and courage was more valuable than anything else. To have such a companion in life... Who would want palaces or hosts of followers?

He wandered the land from the north to the south, from shore to shore, from island to island, trying to find the most beautiful gemstone of a lady possible.

And, upon finding her, he did what any reasonable man would do upon finding the very thing he sough his whole life - he tried to grab her.

It wasn't his fault she was the beacon of agility, stamina and maidenly shyness.

Miroku jumped over a mud-filled ditch to see if the Hiraikotsu was flying his way. He sighed inwardly in relief, it looked like the forest was too dense for the boomerang to fly at him. So he just had to worry about bone-breaking kicks and bruising punches. Man, that girl was as violent as a certain hanyou, and for such a little mishap...

"Fair Sango!" he called back to the girl that in this moment looked more like a feral youkai than a youkai exterminator. "Please, I didn't mean to offend you, my hand merely slipped from your attractively thin waist to find a purchase on the most firm and round behind I've even touched!"

The only reply he got was a growl. Someone was spending way too much time with Inuyasha lately. Miroku wondered if he should feel jealous, but only for a minute, because he had to focus and pick up hi pace. He had a really hard to run through part of the fores in front of him.

His beloved lady was named after coral, but in his opinion she was more like a much more valuable gem. Her beauty, just and honest nature, her sharp mind and iron will were always reminding him of a diamond, transparent and unyielding.

Right now she was more like Kongousouha and he, a wise man, knew better than to let her catch up to him.

Chapter Text

Souta was cleaning the well-house. He had to sweep the floor, get rid of the spider webs and dust. He wasn't too keen on doing spring cleaning, but at least now he didn't fear this dark place. He was a big boy now and for cleaning in the well-house he was going to get some good food.

Suddenly an eerie light filled the small space and a sense of dread seeped into Souta's heart when he looked towards the old dry well in the center of the room. There was something slowly climbing up the dark shaft. An aura of thick agitation and disapproval was pressing on onto the boy, who flattened himself against a walk, unable to flee, his wide eyes focused on the rim of the well in fearful anticipation.

Whatever was making that grunting noise was going to be pretty nasty.

Then the stench of stale water and rotten eggs almost made him gag. Souta covered his mouth with a sleeve, just like Inuyasha would, but he was still unable to run out. What would happen if he had his back turned on the well when the monster emerged?

When the light subsided there was only dim light from the half-closed door to illuminate the room, which was terrifying because Souta knew that the monster would easily spot him in his bright clothing. And there was no place to hide.

He almost whined when a head of black hair appeared over the edge of the well. The hair was tangled and hung in wet, mud-coated ropes. Souta watched in terror as the monster slowly made out of the well, bloodthirsty eyes sweeping around the room.

"Seven days," the terrible monster in shape of a thin girl in dirty, torn yukata, that had once been pale pink, but now had stains of various colors on it. The voice was low and dangerous, like a challenge.

"Fuck no, wench! You said you'd be gone for three!" came a more familiar, albeit also challenging voice from inside the well.

"That was before the youkai attacked and you blasted it to pieces over our heads," growled the girl.

"Feh! Would you prefer I let it eat you?" yelled the male voice from inside the well.

"Osuwari!" yelled the girl without even looking inside the well to see the downed hanyou cursing inside. She passed by the trembling b
boy under a wall and went to take a bath.

Chapter Text

It was a lazy day in Naraku's current palace. The weather was cold, low clouds covering the sky and sending waves of cold rain down to the ground. The last of the plants were weltering in the air rich in miasma.

Kagura sat in the main room, watching the tea kettle intently. She knew that - according to the popular saying - the watched pot boiled slower, but she still was doing that. Focusing on anything else right now was beyond her brain abilities. She had pent the whole night out, making sure that Sesshomaru's sword wasn't rusty. Then, on her way home, she had ran into Kouga and had toyed with him for a while (who knew he could get so flustered if he got some extra breeze flipping his skirt up?) before growing bored and resuming her retreat to the hideout. She had reached home just before the daybreak.

Now she was wishing for a fresh tea and a long soothing soak. She could get it, if it was one of those days when Naraku woke after midday.

She bit her lip when she heard some footsteps in the hallway, but breathed a sigh of relief when the newcomer turned to be not the dark hanyou, but Kanna. The girl looked even paler than usual, with gray bags under her eyes. The incarnation of void looked at the tea kettle and something akin to hope appeared in her big eyes.

"It's almost ready." Kagura smiled. "Hard night?"

"Yes," Kanna gave a tiny nod and walked to the cup shelf to get her favorite cup adorned with flowers and butterflies.

"What did you do?" Kagura asked. The girl shrugged.

"Watching Inuyasha."

"For the whole night?"

"Mhm..." Kanna's chin almost touched her chest as she assumed the sitting position that allowed her to doze off without fear of falling into the fire in front of her.

"What was he doing that it kept you up all the night?" Kagura asked curiously.

"Sleeping." Kanna murmured and when she saw Kagura's shocked expression she added. "His ears were twitching."

"Hey, girls!" Byakuya waltzed into the room with a wide smile, rosy cheeks and lively gait. "How are my two lovely sisters today, after such a calm night?"

"Go to hell," Kagura muttered half-heatedly, because the water finally started to boil and the youngest incarnation sprang forward to pour their tea first before making his own drink.

"And they were swiveling," Kanna added in the silence that fell while the other two were taking first sips of their tea.

Chapter Text

She was walking home, slowly climbing up the path connecting two villages. She had traveled this road pretty often, but for the first time in her long life she was coming home to a hut full of people.

Her parents had died before she could remember them and her older sister had died when she had been still but a child. She had became a miko shortly after that and had never married. For years she had lived aloe and if you asked her right now she would say she never regretted that choice.

Still, it was nice to know that in her hut there was a fire burning, a dinner being prepared and a rag tag group of misfits just like her bickering about this thing or that.

She neared the hut and saw Shippou running out of it as if to greet her. But his yell of her name wasn't a joyous one, it was desperate. The reason for that became obvious pretty soon, because right after the fox ran the dog.

Kaede looked at the pair running in circles around her. She briefly wondered why the miko who appeared in the door way wasn't tugging on the metaphorical leash around the hanyou's neck, when she noticed a box of sweets in Shippou's clutches.

Laughing she opened her arms and granted the boy a safe haven, since Inuyasha, while barking curses and insults, would never reach a hand to harm her. When the hanyou glared at her with a pout Kaede released the box from relieved Shippou's hands and threw it towards the hanyou. Inuyasha caught it and dashed back to the younger miko before Shippou had a chance to scream his upset and jump out of her arms to try and save his treats.

Kaede walked towards the younger miko still standing in the doorway.

"Good evening, Kaede," Kagome smiled. "I hope you had a safe trip?"

"Yes, indeed, child. Is Sango per any chance making that fish dish traditional in her village?" the old miko blinked her only one good eye at Kagome.

"Yes," Kagome nodded and led the old woman into the hut. While walking towards Sango in the kitchen area to help her the younger miko walked past the hanyou squatting next to her bag and guarding the ninja food from the pouting kitsune. As she moved past him she patted him between his ears and when he grumbled at her she pretended not to notice as she turned her head to make sure Miroku was still busy reading his scroll and not sneaking up on Sango.

Kaede sat on the raised floor to remove her sandals and smiled widely. She was home and even if the home was often chaotic and overcrowded she wouldn't change it for any palace.

Chapter Text

He wouldn't lie, he liked to run. There was something in feeling the ground under his feet flying back, his own strength pushing his forward with every bound and leap, faster and faster. Insults couldn't be heard in the wind whistling around him as he ran, tangling his mane. Fears, insecurities and doubts had no place in his mind as he ran, for he was focusing on the elation that was the speed and freedom. The knowledge of his strength and agility was always blazing and he never felt worthless or a half of what he should've been when he was running.

Whenever he ran his mind was clean, open and speeding forward, never lingering on what had been or what could have been. There was only the present and the future towards which he was running.

There were many reasons to run - as a kid he had ran from danger, then also from his own loneliness and emptiness in his heart. Then, when he had met Kagome and the others he had learned to run for different reasons - to playfully chase,to mock bicker with humans who barely could keep up with him jogging beside them, to protect and support others, to be on the head of their pack, leading them. After meeting Kagome he was never a stray dog running alone.

But above all other reasons he loved the runs that ended with a certain bizarre miko wrapped in his arms, laughing like crazy and trying in vain to push away his tickling fingers. As she laughed and squealed, never for a second fearing the abomination hanyou, his soul felt as if it was healing. Eventually, when it lasted for a while, he would join her, laughing with all his heart, his fangs on the display, his body practically tingling with that easy feeling he could name.

Inuyasha smirked when he thought about the poor victim of his deft hands. She was somewhere in the forest ahead of him, running and tripping over tree roots and ditches as she jumped from a meadow to a meadow, following animal paths and - he could already hear it - giggling. His ears perked up and he increased the pace of his steps.

He could smell her too, the whole forest seemed to be full of the scent of the girl he chased. It was making him feel alive and light as never before. At the same time he wanted to speed up and slow down to prolong the game.

He approached the spot where she hid, behind a thick tree. He almost called out to her, telling her that hiding was stupid. But instead he decided to stalk forward, circling the tree, slowly advancing. The corner of his mouth twitched when he saw her sleeve. Without wasting another minute he pounced...

...And pulled the thick outer shirt Kagome had had on when they had started the game off of a branch. He blinked at the garment. The next moment his ears twitched and he was tackled to the ground by an assault from the side. He rolled a few times with the attacker and landed on his back, the giggling girl straddling his waist. Without a preamble she reached towards his ribs.

It didn't take long for Inuyasha's booming laughter to fill the forest, followed by happy giggles of a girl who refused to be the youkai's prey today.

Chapter Text

Miroku was looking for his tabi and couldn't find them anywhere. He searched the baskets with clothing, both clean and dirty, he looked under the table and even under the raised floor, but he came out empty handed and in need for dusting.

Finally he asked Sango if she knew where his lucky tabi were. His lovely wife raised a brow and shrugged.

"You wore them for the trip with Inuyasha, so they might still be in your traveling bag," she answered to his inquiry, not even looking up from changing their son's diaper.

He went to his bag and found inside some articles in need of washing that he had forgot about, but no tabi.

"Oi, monk!" Miroku turned around to see Inuyasha standing in the doorway, the twins clinging to his legs and giggling. But the hanyou wasn't in equally good mood.

"What is it, dear friend?" Miroku asked. An excellent idea came to his mind, but to get Inuyasha to help him in finding the missing tabi he had to soothe the hound. Maybe a flattery could do the trick? He frowned, trying to find a good compliment... "You look exceptionally good, did you do something with your hair?"

Sango snorted, the twins giggled and Inuyasha growled, and Miroku realized that he had said that aloud.

"Sorry," Miroku gave the hanyou a sheepish grin. "I'm a bit distressed because I can't find my lucky tabi."

The girls giggled again when Inuyasha threw something and hit the surprised monk right on the forehead. Miroku automatically reached a hand and caught the soft ball before it fell to the ground. It was dirty white and... Let's just say it didn't smell of roses.

"I found yah tabi, you moron," Inuyasha growled at him when he unrolled the ball to reveal that it was indeed a pair of socks.

"Girls," Sango sighed. "Apologize to uncle Inuyasha for throwing stink pellets at him gain."

"Hey!" Miroku gasped. "I'm wounded, they don't stink... That bad..."

Chapter Text

Shippou was but a child, young and not knowing much about the world. But he knew that each and every formidable fighter or cunning strategist, every person had a weak spot, something that could bring them down and make their resolve crumble.

They were camping in a lovely meadow in the forest near a village, waiting for Sango's return from performing an extermination. Usually at least Miroku would accompany her as a backup, but sadly, this was one of the villages the monk conned before and they were also wary of youkai and oddly clothed girls. So, while Sango was dealing with a youkai infestation in the village, the rest was spending time on doing homework, playing, napping or meditating.

"Say, Inuyasha..." Kagome said from her spot under a tree, looking at the hanyou laying next to her, with his hands under his head. Shippou looked up to see the dog ears on top of his head twitching. "Couldn't we stay here for tonight? I mean Sango will be tired when she comes back and we all could rest, catch up on stuff and just..."

"Nope. She drags her butt here and we're off," Inuyasha cut her in without opening his eyes. "She will ride on Kirara anyway and the day is still young, we can make progress on the hunt instead of dawdling."

"But..."

"No buts, wench," Inuyasha said in the tone that meant he wasn't going to change his mind. Shippou was already seated to watch the show unfold, as was Miroku, who abandoned his meditation in order to watch the quarrel that was sure to come.

Kagome glared at the hanyou next to her and put her book on the grass, her hands flexing as she slowly bent towards the boy.

 

"Inuyasha," she drawled dangerously.

"Keh! Just drop it, wench!"

Shippou and Miroku stared open mouthed as the girl carefully rested her hand on top of Inuyasha;s belly and rubbed it slowly in a circle. The hanyou first got tense, but as soon as he realized she wasn't going to hurt him, his muscles went lax. To Shippou's surprise the scowl was wiped off of Inuyasha's face, replaced by a relaxed, lazy look that the kitsune rarely saw on his dog friend.

"I-nu-ya-sha..." Kagome purred now, her hand never stopping its rubbing motion. The inu failed to bark out a denial, humming only a sound that was too soft for even Shippou to pick up. "It's just one day... We all could use some rest and relaxation, you too, my..."

Sadly, Shippou never got to hear what she was going to say or if Inuyasha was going to cave in under this soft treatment, because Miroku burst into laughing.

"Hey!" Inuyasha's eyes flew open and sent daggers at the monk rolling in the grass like a mad man.

"Sorry..." be wheezed between chuckles, while everyone glared at him. "I didn't mean to..."

"Quit laughing, you moron!" Inuyasha barked, sitting up and pushing Kagome's hand away from his tummy, both blushing fiercely.

"Your foot... She rubbed... Twitchy-twitch..." Miroku tried to communicate something and while Shippou couldn't piece the message it became clear that the other two could because the blushes deepened and Inuyasha scoffed and cursed the monk before stomping away into the forest. Pouting Kagome hid her embarrassment behind her textbook.

'I'll never understand adults,' Shippou shook his head, but decided to store away the information, that Inuyasha's weakness was a tummy rub. He had this sneaking suspicion that Kagome had been seconds from making him change his mind without utilizing the beads or bribery.

Chapter Text

Deep within a forest, in the growing shadows of approaching night, in a hollow in an ancient tree, a boy was curled in a ball.

His little feet were dirty, so were his hands, his clawed fingers hidden under a thick layer of dried soil and leaves. His hair, once so white and smooth, now was tangled and with twigs and mats. Only his red kimono looked as if freshly washed, the color rich. The boy's face, dirty and with tears never drying on his cheeks, was hidden in a huge sleeve as he tried to muffle his sobs.

He feared the night, he feared the loneliness, the sounds in the forest were still so scary to him. He had been always one to love the wildness of the forest, he had always ran to the forest to find peace from all the other kids picking on him. But now, when he knew that he couldn't go to the only other place where he had always felt safe, even the forest was no longer welcoming. Besides, he had never stayed a night in the woods.

But now he was preparing for his third night, the third night of loneliness, fear and sorrow. The one who was the most precious to him, his gentle mother, was gone, taking with her the sense of security, of belonging, of understanding. He was already painfully aware his old home was off limits, that the humans weren't going to accept him. And the youkai of the forest weren't nice too, they had tried to catch and eat him.

There was no one to embrace and rock the hanyou baby to sleep.

The tree he was hidden in, shook when wind blew and the boy's ears twitched on top of his head. He could hear leaves rustle and branches scrape against each other. He could hear the nearby stream whispering soothingly. The tree trunk was hiding him from sight, providing shelter from predators and cold.

He slowly lifted his head to look at the starry sky visible through the opening, the dark trees swaying under the twinkling stars.

This was his home, he was safe in the forest, as long as he was watchful, as long as he was smart. He was alone, but he was not utterly lost, he had a place where he could stay, where he could avoid hatred of the humans and where the nature itself would help him hide from youkai. He was neither, so he had to be stronger than both, in order to survive, like his mom wanted.

.

A boy was curled in a ball in a hollow of a tree. He was hiding from the whole world, trying not to howl in sadness and loneliness, so not to alert anyone to where he was hidden. He needed some time to get hold of his emotions before he could return to the village and meet the twin daughters of his friends and wait another three days to visit a special - almost sacred to him - meadow.

For now he just let the old tree sway on the wind, listening to the sounds of the nature. He had to find his strength, the strength of will to accept the reality of being without the one most precious to him, to not grow bitter of his friends' happiness. He wanted to be happy for his friends and their new family, for Kagome who was safe and with her family now, for Shippou who rekindled his ties to the kitsune.

He didn't want to think he was alone again, he didn't want things to go back to the way they were before her.

As the trees swayed on the wind around him, whispering their secrets, he thought that as long as he had a place to go and hide for a while he would be fine. He just had to survive, wait for as long as it took for her to return to him. After all, if anything, the forest had taught him that the winter always ended. And for him she was the spring.

.

A boy was sitting in a hollow in an old tree, hidden from sight. He was pouting, his little ears twitching in irritation. The tree wasn't far from his home, but he knew the hollow was well hidden from anyone walking on the ground.

"Hey, squirt," the startled boy yelped and looked back to see in the opening a head of silver hair, with dog ears on top of it. Yellow eyes were peering at him with curiosity and a fang could be seen peeking from under a lip. "Why are you here?"

"Mom said I can't go to meet you and uncle Miroku on your way home from work," the boy replied and as soon as he did he realized that it was his father crawling into the hollow, putting him in his lap and hugging him tightly. "Dad! You're back!"

"Yup," the older hanyou stroked his hair and rubbed an ear, coaxing him to relax. "You know, your mom was right, you're too small to go out of the village by yourself. A youkai could eat you in one gulp."

"Not true! I could hide and sneak around a youkai!" the boy pouted. "You taught me how to hide!"

"I taught you one trick," the man smirked. "There are more tricks and secrets to learn before you can roam the forest freely." He chuckled when he saw his son's grumpy face. "But you're making progress, kid, I had a bit of trouble finding you."

The tree shook under a strong blow of the wind and the man closed his eyes for a moment, holding his son in a tight, loving embrace. Yes, he was going to teach him and his other children all he knew, so they would never have to learn how to survive on their own. He was going to be there for them, to embrace, to protect, to be with them and to teach them to respect the nature that aided those who were cunning in the art of surviving in this dark, hateful world.

Chapter Text

My Inu, my doggy pal
When he's content he purrs
He thinks the house is his
But you won't like him when he's angry
No, you won't like him when he's angry
Angry, angry

He's cuddly
He's lovely when he's in a happy mood
He loves his ninja food
But he's got such an attitude
Completely rotten attitude
Rotten attitude

Doggy is angry, doggy is offended
Fur standing out and deadly claws extended
Darting around and cursing quite a bit
And throwing such a hissy fit
I don't know what to make of it

Don't touch him
Don't look at him
My doggy knows tae kwon do
He can take you out, I know
I've seen it before and it's not pretty
He's really one ferocious doggy
Pal now. (Oh, no.)

He's deadly
He'll hurt you
He'll show you endless pain
His little whiskers are stained with the blood of those that he has slain
Believe me, he will go insane
He will go insane

Doggy is angry, doggy is offended
Fur standing out and deadly claws extended
Darting around and cursing quite a bit
And throwing such a hissy fit
I don't know what to make of it

Doggy is angry, full of discontentment
Wildly attacking random pieces of lint
Darting around in a psychotic blitz
And throwing all these hissy fits
But I still love my doggy pal to bits!

Chapter Text

Moon Singer
It was a lovely evening, with spring sky clear from clouds and the land and forest serenely sinking in the darkness of the starry night. A full moon was sailing overhead, basking the village in a soft light.

The gang sat near Kaede's hut, enjoying the view before retiring to bed. Even Inuyasha was with them, sitting on a tree branch. Kagome, smiling her little happy smile, sat next to him, leaning into his side for comfort and safety.

Sango, Miroku and Kaede shared a cup of tea before sleep, Shippou was already dozing off next to Kirara. The whole group was talking, for a change not bickering or arguing about anything.

Suddenly the wind brought to their ears a song, sung by an unlikely singer.

"Auuu! Kagomeeee! I love youuu! Be my waifuuu!"

"Damn wolf," Inuyasha grumbled under his breath.

 

a

Chapter Text

Inuyasha ran through the forest, the dappled sunlight making his hair shine like silver It looked like an unruly mane of hair, but was in face a very well brushed and styled one. No tangles, no mats, no split ends.Even the fur on his dog ears was brushed.

The ancient robe of the fire rat, standing out against the greens and browns of the forest, was pristine clean and ironed to perfection, the pleats of his hakama straight and even.

His bare feet were clean and pedicured, despite their calloused look. The same went for his hands, with the claws shining when he flexed his fingers.

He carried no bags of supplies, only a katana on his hip. He looked like a seasoned warrior, which he was. Very handsome and strong warrior.

"Stop!" called Kagome from behind the trees and the hanyou obeyed. "Alright, run back, just try to run like a ninja this time!"

"The hell? How does a ninja run look like?" Inuyasha tilted his head. Kagome emerged from the trees, attired in her school uniform.

"Lean forward, spread your hands like that and go," she demonstrated, then when he mimicked the pose, she went back in the forest.

"But that's stupid." Inuyasha grumbled.

"Quit complaining and go already! Miroku said he has only thirty eight percent energy on his camera and we still have to record Sango throwing the Hiraikotsu!

"I told you filming some birds and my feet for twenty minutes was pointless!" Inuyasha complained.

"Just go!"

"Alright, alright! Keh!" Inuyasha assumed again the ninja run position and ram back towards the meadow where Sango was making final preparations of the throwing scene. Meanwhile a man approached Kagome.

"Hey, Kagome, did you see Kikyou anywhere? She was supposed to be by the melancholic looking waterfall."

"No clue, Naraku. Go faster, Inuyasha!" she exclaimed.

"Bite me!" carried the wind back to her ears. Naraku left her side, but Shippou ran to her.

"Kagome, Kagome, can I have a lollipop?"

"Not now, Shippou."

"Why not now?"

"Because we're making the opening and you're going to be needed in the next shot. Go change and tell Yura to redo your ponytail, it's too messy. Where's Kirara?"

"She left. She said that she needs to find a double because she can't lift us all."

Chapter Text

The inutachi was walking down a path leading through a thick forest to a small fishing village by a lake. A village that was soon going to be tricked into letting in a group of youkai and supply free food and lodging for the whole gang in return for a totally unnecessary exorcism from a - for some reason spiritually gifted - monk with a knack for fraud.

"Alright, what should it be this time?" Miroku asked his friends.

"A kappa!" Shippou exclaimed from Kagome's shoulder, his tail waving in excitement.

"It makes sense, it's close to water," Sango nodded.

"It could be a frog, like that one we fought with Inuyasha," Kagome put a finger to her chin and suddenly stopped. "Uh, guys..."

At the same time she spoke, Inuyasha turned around and growled. A few seconds later their odd behavior was explained when a whirlwind approached them and stopped near the miko, revealing a wolf youkai.

"Hey, Kagome," Kouga greeted. "How are you?"

"She isn't- Eh?" Inuyasha stared at the wolf, who for once didn't grab Kagome's hands or make lovely-dove eyes at her. He didn't even call her his woman. When the whole group looked at the wolf in confusion and Kagome tried to reply, a soul stealer flew from the sky.

Both Inuyasha and Kagome stared at it, for a moment forgetting Kouga was there. After the first one came a whole flock of them, carrying Kikyou and planting her gently on the dirt road.

"So... Uh, Kagome... That will be awkward..." Kouga said sheepishly. "But, you know, you never were too much into ditching the dog and, well... We met," he gestured to the other miko. "And we talked... And.... Uh. Our relationship wasn't really that great anyway..."

"We came here to inform you that we joined forces," Kikyou said evenly.

"What?" Inuyasha's jaw almost hit the ground.

"We had the impression you weren't interested in teaming up with others?" Sango asked.

"Kouga is better suited to act as my partner than anyone of you and we have things in common," Kikyou shrugged. "He wants revenge, like I do."

"I can assure you we all have strong reasons to hunt Naraku," Miroku lifted his hand.

"Yeah, but in contrast to dog face I can keep up with Kikyou," Kouga said proudly.

"Keh, because you have shards in your legs," the hanyou grumbled.

"Anyway, Kikyou is willing to be with me, so... Sorry, Kagome, you're cool and stuff, but she's... Uh... Stronger and pretties..." Kouga tried to explain to the girl why he had chosen another. "And she can sesnse the jewel shards too!"

He expected tears, shouting and insults. What he didn't expect was a warm smile - directed at both Kikyou and him - and a nod.

"I'm glad for you two," she said. "Naraku grew so strong lately, it's just right to travel and fight him in teams. I always worried one of you would get hurt and there would be no one to tend your wounds."

"This is nice of you," Kikyou said with a kind smile. "You have many flaws, but at least you have a true miko goodness in you. But there is no need to concern yourself with our well-being. Especially when you and your group are following the way leading straight to the lair of a dragon."

And with that she let her soul collectors lift her again. Kouga waited a minute for her to reach the treetops before he ran after her.

"Heard it? There's a dragon there!" Shippou exclaimed. "Way better than a measly kappa!"

Miroku and Sango looked between Kagome scowling after Kikyou for her comment and Inuyasha, who had been pretty quiet during the whole exchange.

"Keh! I can handle a dragon just fine! Come, you weak humans, we have better things than stand in the middle of wolf stink cloud!"

"I guess..." Sango started. "We better follow him... But... I expected..."

"You heard the guy, let's go!" Kagome said and ran after the hanyou.

Chapter Text

Inuyasha gripped Tessaiga's hilt in both hands and started to pour his youki into it, for some reason yelling.

"Aaaaa...!"

Kagura looked at Naraku, standing there and holding his part of the Shikon no Tama.

"So? How big is his youki level?"

Naraku glanced at the mirror Kanna, who was standing next to him held.

"It's just over a thousand. No big deal."

"Ah, okay," Kagura said and stepped forward to intercept the blow of the youki attack of Inuyasha's sword. She created a barrier of wind and waited for him to unleash the attack.

And so Inuyasha did, easily breaking the barrier and missing Kagura by centimeters. Then he proceeded to charge at her and the wind sorceress had a hard job trying to stay in one piece.

"Wait a minute..." Naraku frowned when he saw how hard it was for Kagura to deal with the hanyou. He leaned in and peered in Kanna's mirror again. Something was off. He turned the mirror in the girl's hands.

"Damn it! Kagura!" he exclaimed in shock and alarm.

"Whaaaargh?!" Kagura yelled, sidestepping a Wind Scar and getting kicked by the dog hanyou in the side. She fell to the ground and rolled away in a futile attempt to get a break.

"It's over nine thousand...!"

Chapter Text

It was all just an accident, an incident no one could predict or prevent. Some would say that it was fate or karma, that finally got to the hanyou, who so liked to hit others on the head.

"Shit, shit, shit...!" Shippou cried in near panic as he ran towards the hanyou, who had been napping under the Sacred Tree until just a minute ago. During this minute his status changed from 'napping' to 'being awakened by a sudden noise' and finally to 'unconscious'. "Inuyasha, are you alright?"

Of course Inuyasha couldn't answer, but it was safe to think he wouldn't say 'yes'. And, judging by the lump on his temple and a streak of blood running down the side of his face, he wasn't going to give the kitsune any reply any time soon.

Shippou cautiously approached the fallen hero, ready to flee at any sign of him waking up. But Inuyasha remained motionless where he had fell after being hit on the head by a stone statue created by Shippou's magic.

Of course, Shippou didn't do it on purpose. He hadn't noticed Inuyasha laying under the Tree when he had cast his spell. Usually the hanyou preferred to take his naps on tree limbs, not on the ground. And when Shippou had noticed the red and white of his (kinda older brother) friend it was already too late. For a split second Shippou had hoped Inuyasha could dodge the projectile, but the hope had died fast when he had heard the sound of the impact, the pained grunt and the thump of a body hitting the ground. The statue had rolled to the side, exposing the victim of the accident.

After a short inspection of the lump Shippou focused his will and summoned a bottle of water and a piece of cloth. He wasn't on the level to create little objects like these with his magic, but he could summon them if he knew where they were. And he had a good knowledge of what was inside Kagome's bag. The little kitsune wasn't a healer, but had helped Kagome enough times to know a bit what to do. He damped the cloth and cleaned off the blood first before putting the rag on the lump.

It helped, because a few minutes later, when Shippou was trying to decide if it was safe to leave the hanyou and run to the village for help, Inuyasha groaned and opened his yellow eyes.

"Inuyasha!" Shippou squealed in relief. "You're okay!"

What followed was the most bizarre conversation in Shippou's life.

.

Kagome came back early. She had nothing to do at home and figured out it would be nice to surprise Inuyasha by not getting late for once. That was why there was no one waiting for her by the well. She walked to Kaede's hut to find her friends sitting outside.

Miroku and Sango were staring at what was in front of them. And when Kagome looked that way, she was unable to stop staring as well.

Under a nearby tree - Inuyasha's sulking tree, to be precise - Inuyasha and Shippou were playing with Shippou's spinning tops. And the hanyou was smiling - a real happy smile, not his trademark smirk.

"Uh... What happened here?" Kagome asked after a second. Shippou's tail was twitching in excitement as he showed off his various amazing techniques to equally engrossed in the subject older boy.

"We don't know," Miroku replied. "When they came back from the forest... He just was like this, a bit dazed and..."

"They went to Lady Kaede and then came out here to play. He's nice to people, Kagome!" Sango exclaimed and pointed a finger to the two youkai boys innocently playing a game as if they were doing something naughty. "See? That's not normal! I told monk Miroku that it's not normal and..."

"But it's fun!" Miroku waved a hand. "Such a nice change, can't we just enjoy the peaceful, happy atmosphere?"

"It's abnormal, monk," Sango glared and turned to Kagome. "Kagome, just look at him, he isn't himself! Maybe he's possessed? Or bewitched?"

"He is... Nice?" Kagome asked and looked again at the usually grumpy hanyou laughing at Shippou balancing his spinning top on his palm. Miroku smiled and nodded, while Sango pouted and glanced worriedly at the pair. "Huh..."

"Kagome!" Shippou noticed the young miko and ran towards her, jumping in her arms. Inuyasha wasted a minute to put the spinning tops carefully on the ground where no one could trip over them before he stood up and approached more slowly, patiently waiting for the kitsune to finish greeting the girl.

"Hello, Shippou," Kagome said. "I see you're having fun with Inuyasha."

"Oh... I'm sorry, Kagome, I didn't mean to hit him on the head and knock him unconscious!" Shippou exclaimed. Kagome glanced to the hanyou, worried this confession would prompt a tantrum. Inuyasha offered her a wide, reassuring smile.

"It's alright, Lady Kaede makes me a tea that will help with the headache," he said. "Still, I appreciate that my girlfriend is concerned about my health."

Kagome almost dropped Shippou.

"You didn't tell us that!" Miroku chuckled. "So, this altered behavior of our dog-eared friend is the result of a well-aimed hit to the head?"

Once again, Inuyasha didn't go ballistic. Once again Shippou almost got dropped to the ground.

"So... He's not possessed or bewitched?" Sango inquired.

"Nah, he just kinda forgot some stuff," Shippou grinned from his highly endangered place in Kagome's arms. "So I filled him in before we went to Kaede so she could fix him."

"I feel really alright, guys, don't worry about me," Inuyasha cut in. "Can we just spend some fun time together today? We can leave for the jewel shard quest when we're all ready and rested."

"Inuyasha!" came Kaede's old voice from somewhere inside the hut. "Your herbal tea is ready!"

"Coming, Lady Kaede!" Inuyasha called back and grinned at his friends. "See you all in a minute. Do you think we could go for a picnic on the riverbank? I have a place there I'd really want to show you, Kagome."

After that he casually walked to the doorway of the hut, leaving three stunned teenagers and one smug kitsune. They all remained motionless for at least a few seconds before...

"Inuyasha, wait!"

"You can't drink that!"

Shippou, who barely had time to turn in the air before reaching the ground where Kagome had dropped him to run after Sango, Miroku and - most importantly - Inuyasha, looked after the trio and shook his head when he heard shouting and commotion inside.

Silly humans, Inuyasha was bound to get his memories back sooner or later.

Then he froze to actually think about that. And about what he had told Inuyasha.

When Inuyasha's enraged shouts reached his ears the little kitsune was already fleeing the village.

Chapter Text

Kikyou's soul collectors returned to her through the darkened forest. She smiled, it meant that the one she wanted to meet was close behind. Despite no longer holding love for the man and knowing that the undead couldn't keep ties to living without harm to both, she still felt a pang of affection every time she saw him.

After all, even if for a short time, he had made her feel happy, normal, not having to be strong. For this one gift alone she had long ago decided not to take him to Hell when the time for her departure came. He wasn't the one who had killed her, he deserved to live and try to find happiness, even if it meant living with another woman.

The first months after her return to the living world she had been angry, pained and vengeful, but now she was more serene, even if often melancholic And, whenever she felt sad, she desired to see the one man, who could see her as more than a miko, even if meeting her was awkward for him.

She saw a flash of red in the forest. He was approaching as slowly as always, guilt and regret slowing his swift feet. After all that happened between them the mere sight of red in the dark was enough to lift her spirit a little. Her soul collectors danced around her when they sensed her excitement.

Then she saw that it wasn't Inuyasha who was talking towards her.

It was Kagome.

Kikyou watched the girl following the last of her soul collectors, walking carefully around trees and bushes until she reached Kikyou's meadow. She wore Inuyasha's kimono, the garment loose around her slender body and practically covering her from mid-thighs up.

The undead miko stood up from where she had been sitting on a fallen log when the living one came closer and glanced at her awkwardly and a bit tensely.

"Kagome," Kikyou greeted. "Why is it you who came? I summoned Inuyasha."

"He..." Kagome blushed and didn't raise her eyes. "He refused to."

"He... Refused?" Kikyou raised an eyebrow. The younger girl nodded mutely. "I see. In this case I shall share my information on Naraku with you."

Kikyou launched into the discussion about their foe as if it was Inuyasha standing in front of her, not this fragile girl. She shared all about discovered destroyed villages, bits of devoured youkai in the forest, shards rumors and clues to where the vile hanyou was hiding. But a part of her was still wondering why Inuyasha didn't come. He had always came to meet her before... What was different now?

To discover the reason for this one should travel in time around a half of an hour and a bit in the space, to find themselves in the inugang's camp located a bit deeper in the forest than Kikyou's meadow.

The whole group sat waiting more or less patiently for their fish to be randy. The humans were playing cards, Shippou was watching the food cook, Kirara was napping and Inuyasha was tending to Tessaiga, cleaning the blade and wrapping the hilt with a new cord.

The day had been eventful, but rather pleasant and everyone was in pretty good mood.

That is until they spotted the soul collectors.

They all looked at the beings flying overhead, then at Inuyasha, who was glaring upwards. When he looked at them, they all hastily turned to what they were doing. They added some more cheerfulness to their words and actions, but it was obvious it was forced. Especially Kagome looked down. Inuyasha grit his teeth and resumed wiping Tessaiga's blade with a cloth.

He had seen Kikyou the previous week, he doubted she had any important news. And seeing her... It was like digging claws in a half-healed wound. And, to make things worse, he had to leave Kagome behind, protected only by their friends. He knew they were capable of doing the job, but he didn't like to place the responsibility of guarding Kagome on their shoulders. Besides, if he went, not only would he have to face the guilt of leaving Kagome and seeing what became of Kikyou, but also deal with everyone acting like ass afterwards. Couldn't they understand a thing? And the idiots were calling themselves smart.

"Inuyasha..." he looked up to see Kagome standing in front of him. And, yup, she had this forced too happy smile on her face, along with the sad eyes. "You should go."

'Damn wench.'

"Feh," he examined the blade and put it in the sheath. Then he started to polish the sheath itself, his moves slow and purposeful, but a little stiff.

"She's waiting," Kagome's voice sounded choked, as if she was pushing herself to talk. His ears flattened against his head. He cast a glance towards the fire and the rest of the gang. Everyone was peeking at him, practically waiting for him to go, so they could complain how he went and was an idiot.

He refused to do what they expected. He wasn't in the mood to deal with their glares and Kagome acting like he was a traitor after suffering through the meeting with the woman that was no longer his ex love and was a walking sign of his failures and weakness. He looked straight in Kagome's eyes.

"Screw you."

The rest stopped pretending they were focused on something else and just stated at him. Kagome opened and closed her mouth a few times.

"Say what?" she finally choked out.

"I said screw you," Inuyasha replied with the same calm voice and put his cloth aside. He stood up and put his sword at his hip. "You wanna me go just so you can all whine how I went. You do it every damn time and I'm tired of it."

"But... Kikyou...."

"Go yourself if you want to!" annoyed, he leaped up to a convenient overhanging tree branch. "I ain't going!"

"Kikyou might have some info..." started Miroku hesitantly.

"You can go too, I don't care!" as an afterthought Inuyasha shed his kimono and threw it on Kagome's head. She didn't even try to catch it or dodge. "Put this on. If something tries to eat you, scream. Now go. Don't make her wait!" he added, mocking her voice.

Then he laid back on his branch and waited. What were they going to do now? They were silent, motionless. Finally, after a minute or two, Kagome put his kimono on and walked towards the edge of their glade, headed in the direction from where the soul collectors came.

When an hour later Kagome came back she had a very somber look on her face, but when he jumped to the ground to greet her there was no sadness and melancholy in her eyes. No one spoke about him being a two-timing bastard that night and Inuyasha decided he liked the change.

Chapter Text

Kagome rolled over to face the wall and shield her eyes from the morning sun. After battling youkai for the shards in the past and two days and nights of studying and tests in the future, she was spent. She just wanted to sleep...

Someone drew the curtains, obscuring the sunlight. Kagome sighed in bliss. Since she didn't hear footsteps she knew it had to be Inuyasha, her mother would make noise while walking towards the window.

No matter, she was grateful. After the emotional strain of the more and more dangerous battles with Naraku, Kikyou's final death and all that followed... It had been pretty rough on her and she wanted to prolong the serene state of her dreams for a couple minutest longer before facing the cold, dreadful reality. In her dreams she could imagine Inuyasha wasn't sad, that the final battle wasn't looming over them all.

Soon she sank in the warm fuzziness of her dream, only hazy thoughts forming slowly in her mind as she tried to drift closer to the welcoming embraces of slumber.

And she had one of the worst dreams. You know, not the one about vile youkai attacking you or your crush being dragged to the underworld. Not the one about vile spider taking over the world or humongous white dog spilling acid at you. Not the one about vicious tests and merciless teachers even.

Nope, the worst dream possible is the one in which you get up off of your bed and dress in your daily clothing. The one in which you brush your teeth and in general prepare for the new day. The one in which you go downstairs to eat breakfast before Inuyasha could come in and drag you back to the past.

And she had this dream right now.

Want to know what's so bad about it?

Because once you actually wake up you're still in the bed, dressed in your pajamas, your hair a total mess and Inuyasha is stamping his foot, glaring at you from his spot next to your desk.

A part of Kagome was aware that she couldn't move without actually flexing a muscle. But still, the feeling of her brush combing her hair and the fabric of her clothing rubbing against her skin, the smell of her mom's cooking - it all felt so real.

That was why she finally gave up dreaming and decided to investigate this weird feeling of too real for a dream.

Kagome opened her eyes to see she was indeed in the kitchen, her mother standing by the stove and Souta sitting by the table. Eggs were burning on the forgotten pan on the stove, Souta frozen with his glass of milk held halfway to his mouth. Both were staring at her as if they saw a ghost.

Something was wrapped around her tightly, supporting her body in an upright position. As she got more aware of herself and tensed, the grip loosened slowly until she was free to move. Something pale flashed on the peripheral field of her vision and she looked upwards. She almost fainted when she saw what was swirling overhead.

At least a dozen of soul collectors were flying in circles above her like bees over a honey pot. One flew to land on her shoulder and nuzzle her cheek before it took off to join its kin.

"W-what are those...?" Mrs. Higurashi asked.

"Soul collectors," Kagome replied slowly. "They were Kikyou's... How are they here?"

"Soul... collectors?" Souta gasped when one of the snake-like beings flew around him in a lazy loop. "Are they youkai?"

"Yeah..." Kagome looked down at herself to find herself in the miko attire she had once brought back from the past.She guessed the soul collectors had dressed her in the garment they were familiar with. She guessed buttons and zippers weren't their strong suit. She sat down and gave her family a reassuring smile. "They aren't dangerous to living, so relax."

Mama Higurashi gasped when she finally realized that she was turning eggs into coal, so she went to dump them in the trash and prepare the pan to fry eggs for Kagome. "That's a relief."

"Yeah," Souta nodded. When a soul collector flew closer to him this time he outstretched a hand for it to sit on. It lingered for a moment, blinking lazily at the boy before returning to the flock "They look strange, but not scary."

"They were getting Kikyou souls of deceased to sustain her," Kagome explained. "They were also scouting ahead of her and carrying her whenever she wanted. I... I don't understand why they came to me. Kikyou's dead now, I assumed they would go with her or go to where they usually live."

"Keh!" came from the direction of the window. "I see the old hag was right, the stupid snakes came to pester you, because they sensed your reiki is similar to Kikyou's. Kaede says they might think you're their mistress now."

Kagome gasped and looked towards the window to see Inuyasha sitting on the windowsill.

"Inuyasha!" she gasped, relief washing over her. Whatever she had to face, with the arrogant jerk of a hanyou she felt she could take on the world.

"Miroku and Sango found them floating around the village at dawn, as if they were looking for something," Inuyasha said. "When I came back from hunting they told me that the soul collectors went through the well. Obviously I went after them, just to make sure Kaede was right and they weren't going to do anything dumb."

Two of the soul collectors flew to him and hovered over him, one trying to actually nibble at his ear. Inuyasha waved a hand at them as if they were bothersome flies.

"Oh, Inuyasha!" Souta's face practically lit up when he saw his personal idol so casually sitting on the window sill. Mrs. Higurashi smiled as well.

"Wash your hands, Inuyasha, and join us for breakfast," she said, pulling out of the fridge the bag of sausages.

"Na-" Inuyasha was mere seconds from scoffing at the invitation and demand that Kagome went with him immediately, so they could discuss with Kaede what had happened. But the smell of food caught his attention. Kagome smirked when she saw his ears perk up in the direction of the sausages and the eggs on the pan. "Keh!" the hanyou jumped off of the windowsill to go and wash his hands.

Chapter Text

Goodbye

Inuyasha was distressed. It was plainly obvious to anyone who knew the hanyou even just a little.

His ears were folded back and hidden in his hair, his usual annoyed scowl replaced by the expression nearing despair.

"How can I live without you? Did you ever stop to think about that?" he asked, trying to sound angry. He outstretched a hand, his fingertips hovering just a few centimeters away from the smooth part of the one he was talking to. He knew this smoothness was a lie, the one he was talking to was hard and strong. Or maybe it was better to say 'had been' than 'was'.

"We... We spent so much time together..." he whispered. "I have so many memories of the time I hanged around you," he didn't get a reply. After a second of hesitation the hanyou reached forward and wrapped his arms around the cool, not moving one. His cheek touched the dry, rough surface and he relished the feeling it brought to him the memories of a certain girl shouting up to him to watch her practicing her aim. He still could see the marks left by her arrow on the nearest tree.

"Inuyasha," Miroku approached the silver-haired boy. "It's time."

"Gimme a minute, dammit!"

"We already did," the monk whispered softly. "Listen, I know it's hard for you, but they have to do it. Before it's too late and someone gets hurt when they pass by to get to the river. You know, children go this way pretty often."

"Keh," the hanyou sighed and stepped back. "Do it now."

He turned his back and walked away, passing by the group of villagers holding saws and ropes.

Still, when not too long afterwards the villagers cut down the dry tree that was about to collapse on the path leading to the river, they could feel a pair of inhuman eyes watching them.

Miroku stood near, praying in his heart that Inuyasha could find a new one, a new tree from which he could overlook Kagome and retreat to pout when she sat him.

But for this, for making new memories of his time with the unusual miko, she had to return to this time.

Chapter Text

She was hiding behind a tree surrounded by some bushes. She felt bad and didn't want anyone to see it. She glared at her hands - big and calloused almost like a man's hand - hands of a warrior, not a lady. The rest of her was just like them, strong, lean, agile, devoid of the gentleness and softness of a maiden.

Usually she didn't mind that, she had always wanted to be strong, capable, independent and able to protect others. But sometimes she felt... Well, as if she was less feminine than others. Especially after bathing with some village girls in a hot spring, like today evening. Kagome wasn't there, being back in her home to study, so she had joined the other girls to have some company. It had been pretty nice, talking to them, but when she had seen them move and look so lovely and gracefully, she had remembered once again, that her own movements were of a fighter.

No one would want to have a wife walking around like a boy and throwing punches like a smith. She had accepted this truth long ago, but lately she was battling the stupid hope that maybe...

She shook her head. It wasn't logical, to be realistic. She had seen many men looking at her with appreciation - for she was a truly skilled exterminator - but they always saw only that she was a youkai slayer. Even with make up and a skirt around her waist the fact that she was also a maiden seemed to slip unnoticed.

Only one man actually saw her as a woman, well, in a way. He was just a pervert and he couldn't just go and grab Kagome's butt if he wanted to stay alive. So maybe pestering her was just him trying to cope with the lack of pretty girls around when they were traveling? But lately his hand wasn't wandering towards her rear as often as it used to, so it looked that his interest in her was fading. She was glad, because she didn't enjoy her personal space being invaded like that, but at the same time she felt a bit bad. It wasn't the kind of attention she wanted, but it was attention... It wasn't the first time a man had been at first pretty interested to find a girl who could take on strong youkai, but then had lost interest after finding out she wasn't going to become a timid and submissive little lady.

Suddenly her musings were disturbed when she heard a familiar voice from the path running on the other side of her tree.

"Hello, lovely lady!"

She blinked at the greeting, but before she could do anything more she heard another person answering.

"Oh, good evening to you, monk Miroku," chirped a young girl's voice. "You aren't going to try and peek at the other girls in the spring? Because if you do..."

Sango's fists clenched.

"Oh, no, how can you suspect me to desire to do such a thing," the monk laughed. "I'm innocent, lovely lady. I'm looking for someone. A girl of stunning beauty. She's like a chrysanthemum among sakura blossoms of the village girls. I was supposed to find her in this area of the forest."

She bit her bottom lip. She knew that despite his claims he wasn't innocent and his perverted nature was as plain to see as Inuyasha's ears, but hearing him talking about another girl and about meeting another one was a bit too much for her.

She had to maim someone and Inuyasha was nowhere in sight to spar with her. So it left her with only one choice. She stood and, to her surprise, found herself face to face with one of the smith's daughters and Miroku, both peering at her from where she was now visible over the bushes.

Miroku's face, instead of wincing, lit up.

"Sango!" he exclaimed. His voice didn't sound alarmed and it stopped the girl from breaking his nose. "I was looking for you!"

"For... me?" the exterminator repeated, shocked. "But..."

"See you around, Sango, monk Miroku!" the smith's daughter giggled, winked at Sango and left in a hurry. Sango just stared at her until she felt Miroku's hand... which was for some reason grasping her hand instead of her butt.

Was the world ending...?

She glanced down to their joined hands and saw that there was a flower stuck between her fingers now - a pale chrysanthemum almost glowing in the dim light. She blinked and looked up to the a bit smug smile on Miroku's face.

"You were eavesdropping," he pointed out. "So you know it's for you, no need to act so surprised."

"I... I don't get flowers," she finally managed to form a sentence. The sour statement snuffled out the light in his eye, but only for a moment. His grip on her hand tightened.

"And this is why I, a wise monk, decided to change this," he proclaimed. "We all were so tired and busy lately. with all the fighting and searching. And since Kagome managed to convince Inuyasha to let her go home for the whole week, it looks like we can take it easy for a while. So... Would you give me the pleasure of having a walk with you this evening? The forest looks so lovely reflected in your eyes..."

She blushed when he moved a bit closer, his other hand coming around her waist to rest near the southern border of the safe land of the small of her back. He looked at her with the same intense look other girls were talking about and to be honest she wasn't sure what to do. His offer sounded so genuine and for once he wasn't acting perverted. He looked like he... Cared. His hold was strong, but not overly so, giving her a sense of security, but not restraining her movements. Butterflies fluttered n her belly and not for an unpleasant reason.

To say she wasn't unused to this kind of behavior from a guy - or this one guy in particular - would be an understatement.

But... She didn't mind that...

Her free hand lifted as if it had a mind of its own and the palm made contact with Miroku's cheek, causing him to blink in surprise. For the first time ever it wasn't a slap, but a gentle touch, a cases he found himself enjoying.

"A walk. And if you annoy me you're going to get back to the village crawling on the ground with bound ankles and wrists," the formidable girl in his arms warned, giving him a stern look before stepping back and leading him away from the hot spring path.

She was a woman unlike most of her time, even if in Kagome's time there were more like her. Pursuing her affection was a challenge, one that not many could handle. She was extraordinary and one should never forget it. Miroku had tried and failed to woo her the old way enough times to realize he had to try a different approach.

And, thankfully to Kagome's stash of romance light novels, he had a broad new one.

Chapter Text

It was a tradition of her people, a skill each one of them possessed, even of only a few were real masters. Creating armor something that could protect them when they fought to protect those who couldn't protect themselves, it was taught to all who chose to be exterminators, so they could fix or remake their gear if need arose. Over time a simple design could evolve to something intricate and closely related to the types of youkai the exterminator fought most often or needed protection against.

Since the destruction of her village, Sango and her brother were the only ones who could uphold the tradition and she wanted to one day teach the art of making armor of youkai hides and bones to her children.

She wasn't a master herself, but was pretty decent, joining various elements to suit her needs. Often, when Kagome went to her time, Sango would leave for a day to adjust her armor in the familiar smithy of her village.

She just returned from such a travel to find her friends sitting under Inuyasha's bed tree next to Kaede's village. Kirara landed near Kagome and Inuyasha sitting side by side, the former overseeing Shippou drawing something and the latter pretending he wasn't enjoying sitting next to the young miko. Kaede sat in the sunlight, writing something on a piece of paper while Miroku was seated next to her and talking about something.

"Sango!" Kagome waved a hand in greeting, followed by others. Sango slipped off of Kirara's back and let the cat go find a nice place for a nap. The exterminator smiled at the group and stood calmly when Miroku paced towards her, standing at her side.

"We missed you deeply, dearest Sa-Aaargh!" Sango grinned wickedly as the monk jumped away from her. His wandering hand found purchase cradled to his chest as he winced in pain.

"Huh?" Kagome blinked. Still grinning, Sango turned around to show the rest the newest addition to her armor., strapped snugly to her behind. Inuyasha and Shippou started to snicker, while Kagome covered her mouth with a hand.

"Is it covered by the hide of a hedgehog youkai?" Kaede said with a smirk on her face. Miroku groaned when Sango glanced over her shoulder at them and nodded.

An exterminator's armor was not a finished thing, It was always evolving, changing to fit the exterminator's needs the best.

Chapter Text

The perfect opportunity to execute his plan came this day. His sister was in this time and she was at school while he was staying at home. It was so easy to slip in her room and grab a small bottle she had on her desk.

Gripping the glass container in his hand Souta ran to his room. He had a backpack prepared - all stuff he could need on his quest. He collected the bag and ran out of the house, following the path to the ancient well. The well house was a bit too dark for his liking, but since Kagome's first travel to the path it was much less spooky. Souta looked down the well, in the darkness. He had once jumped in and nothing had happened. But now he hoped to cross the portal like his sis.

With a few breaths to calm down his pounding heart Souta jumped over the lip of the well, exclaiming in delight when he saw bright blue light enveloping him.

The next moment he was on the solid ground on the bottom of the well, c;ear blue sky above his head. He jumped in joy and immediately started climbing up. It was a hard task, but Souta somehow managed to reach the top and crawled over it. He looked around, his innocent big eyes wide in awe as he took in the vision in front of him.

There was no house, no yard. There were countless trees and other plants growing wildly. He could see the top of the Sacred Tree high above the rest of the forest. The boy excitedly ran in that direction, following his sister's first steps in the feudal era.

Soon he reached the roots of the Sacred Tree. There was no hanyou pinned to its wide trunk, but Souta was still barely keeping from dancing in happiness. He took out of his bag a camera and took a picture.

"Neat!" he exclaimed when the old camera spat out a small piece of paper with the picture. He his it for later and followed a sound he heard after taking the picture - it sounded like metal hitting metal. It was followed by crashing and yelling. After walking through thick forest Souta entered a big glade and stood in amazement, almost forgetting to breathe.

"Damn you, bastard!"

His hero was there, clad in his red kimono, his silver hair swaying with his every move. His sword was in his hand, gleaming in sunlight as he lifted it above his head. Souta gasped when he saw Tessaiga come down and a Wind Scar tear the ground. The hanyou's opponent gracefully avoided the attack and ran at Inuyasha so fast Souta almost missed his movements. He was clad in white, his hair as fair as Inuyasha's, but less wild, his golden eyes cold and calculating. The man was holding a sword of his own, but it looked like a normal katana. Souta couldn't look away from the fight, amazed by the speed and strength of the blows. To his utter shock it seemed that while his hero was a formidable warrior, the other male was faster and much more skilled with a sword. Still, Inuyasha was able to stand his ground against him, yelling profanities Souta was sure would get him on Mom's bad side.

He couldn't help it, he had to take some photos of the battle! He was so focused on the males exchanging blows that he jumped in shock when he heard a small voice near him.

"Hello," he looked to the side and saw a small girl with dark eyes and black hair. She was holding a bunch of wild flowers in her hand and smiling shyly. "Did you lose your way? Rin and her lord can show you to the village after his sparring with master Inuyasha," she offered kindly. A wave of wind messed her hair as a Wind Scar passed well over their heads, cutting down tops of some trees. Souta lifted his camera and took a picture before replying.

"No, I'm just visiting," he said. "I'm Souta, Kagome's brother. You know her?"

"Rin does know her!" the girl beamed. "She's master Inuyasha's friend!"

Souta nodded and saw the girl come a little closer, visibly more relaxed now. Her eyes looked curiously at the picture sticking out of the camera. An idea came to his mind and he turned to take a picture f her. A minute later Rin held not only her flowers, but also a photo of herself with curiosity and confusion looking ahead, a small smile still on her lips.

An hour later two related silver-haired males were hurrying through the Forest of Inuyasha. Their fight forgotten they were searching for a little human girl with smile so radiant that it could melt ice. To Inuyasha's utter surprise they found Rin sitting by the well, along with a boy, who was showing her some odd-looking box and telling her something.

Sesshomaru towered over the strange boy and glared at him.

"Human. Explain yourself. Why did you take this Sesshomaru's ward from his side?"

Souta paled when he saw the cold eyes of gold looking down at him. He felt a warm weight of a hand on his shoulder and saw Inuyasha squatting beside him.

"He's pack to my pack, stop overreacting and scaring the kid, bastard," Souta stared back at the tall man. He didn't look like he was going to harm him. He was just glaring.

"Souta showed Rin some pictures he did with magic!" Rin informed her grumpy lord.

"It was a camera," Souta muttered weakly, lifting the item to be inspected. Inuyasha snatched it out of his grasp and went through the photos with efficiency of someone used to the technology. Souta was only mildly surprised, after all Kagome had a whole photo album with pictures from her adventures in the past, it was very likely her friends were familiar with the modern technique.

Lord Sesshomaru silently loomed over Inuyasha's shoulder, pretending he wasn't amazed by the colors and quality of paintings that had to be done in a flash, since they were depicting a pretty fast-paced battle. He had never seen a human draw so fast. And the thing he used as a sketching pad, it was unlike anything he had ever seen. Killing such a skilled artist, even if he had ;ed Rin away from him, would be a waste.

"Hm. You are forgiven, human, but just this once," he offered his mercy. To his annoyance the boy didn't look properly thankful, he just smiled at him in relief.

"Okay, brat, go home now," Inuyasha handed Souta his camera. Two kids looked at him like kicked puppies.

"Can't he stay for a while longer, master Inuyasha?" Rin asked.

"Yeah, can't i stay? I always wanted to explore..." Souta pleaded.

"You can come back when you print the photos," Inuyasha declared. "So you can give some copies to Rin," he gestured with his chin to the girl, who smiled hopefully. "But now you're going to go home before your sister finds you and freaks out."

Souta gave a nod. Inuyasha had a point, angering his sister was never good. And he could give Rin some photos the next time they meet.

"This one desires to take his ward and leave this place without any more delay," Sesshomaru added. The kids nodded and hugged each other, saying goodbye for now. Sesshomaru watched his younger brother drop the strange human boy in the dry well and almost shrugged.

So the odd miko and the boy lived in the bottom of the dry well. He would never understand humans. He glanced back at Rin following him and babbling about her new friend. He just hoped she would grow up to be a proper lady, not a well-dweller.

Meanwhile Inuyasha stood by the well, wondering how to tell Kagome her brother could use the portal. For some reason he doubted Souta would be a reasonable guy and stayed on the safer side of the portal. On the other side of the well Souta was jumping happily, already planning what to put in his own yellow backpack for travels in the past.

Chapter Text

1. Naughty fingers
Kagome; ~giggles and wiggles her fingers in the general direction of Inuyasha's head~
Inuyasha: Feh! What's up with you and my ears?
Kagome: It's love at first sight, obviously.

2. Life of a Holy Man
Sango: How could you! You told me my pickles are like nothing you ate before!
Miroku: Well, they are. I don't know how they taste, so... Dear Sango, don't be angry, I like your cooking, it's amazing. I just... What is that rope for...?

3. Competition
Sesshomaru: Hm.
(Translation: That pesky kitsune and meddlesome miko, don't taint my Rin with your pointless competitions, everyone knows that this Sesshomaru is of the superior power and beauty.)

4. Commercial Break
Miroku: Yes! 100 percent proof that it's truly working. Just give me your money!

5. Bad boy
Inuyasha: ~glares mutely~

6. Hands
Miroku: ~smirks at Sango~ i didn't know you have a thing for hands, my dear...

7. The spy
Hojo: Someone has to keep an eye on Higurashi. Who knows when she can collapse. Having only one kidney isn't a joke, you know.

8. In 5 minutes
Souta: Big Brother guards the remote like a dog a bone. There's no getting it back from him.
Inuyasha: ~from a distance~ I heard you, kid!
Souta: Oops!

9. The Hunter
Shippou: I'm getting better every day. Soon the chocolate will be mine ~evil laugh~

10. Hero
Sango: I always wondered why Shippou avoids Tessaiga so much nowadays...

11. Tighter
Miroku: Oh, yes, my love, you are a sight to behold...

12. Celestial Maiden
Miroku: Yeah, there is always plenty of rubbing between those two. When we come back from an extermination the whole village can't sleep long after midnight...
Inuyasha; ~hits the monk~ Shut up!

13. Dreadful Garden
Miroku: ~cackles~
Sango: ~blushes and hides her face in her hands~ Oh goodness...

14. Misjudgment
Jaken: Lord Sesshomaru...? Anyone...?

15. Dreadful Garden Pt 2
Kagome: ~sits beside Sango and joins the blushing party~

16. Souta's Test
Mama H.: ~puts the test in a folder to put in a drawer, smiling softly~

17. Bad Day
Toddler Baby: ~gnaws on Inuyasha's finger and gurgles happily~

18. Alluring Scent
Inuyasha: Keh! ~pressed his nose in Kagome's hair~

19. Doggy Traits
Sesshomaru: It's a natural thing. This one fails to see what was so shocking about it.

20. Dreadful Garden Pt 3
Miroku: ~pats Inuyasha on the shoulder and ducks his head to avoid a hit~

21. (FS) Puppies Sing
Kagome: The puppies are growing and soon they will join Inuyasha's pack. I can't wait for them all to come to the village with Inuyasha.

22. Souvenirs
Miroku: ~whistles while dangling a string of coins~

23. Dog References
Kagome: ~reaches a hand and rubs an exposed tummy. A well-defined six-pack tummy~ My puppy...

24. Locked Away
Miroku: ~smirks~ And let me tell you that it took two days for them to come out of that hut!
Sango: That doesn't really count, they went to Inuyasha's hideout in his forest for the next week.
Kagome: Hey! We wanted a honeymoon!

25. A Question
The Twins: ~poking Sango with cushions~ Confess!

26. Dangerous Peeping
Inuyasha: You stared at my ass! And you always yell at me when I see you naked by an accident!

27. Buyo's Revenge
Inuyasha: Damn cat...

28. Bad Hair Day
Jakotsu; I love to do big brother's hair. It's so soft and braidable!

29. Battle Form
Sesshomaru: Hm.
(Translation: As this one stated previously, there is nothing that could make this one look less badass)

30. In Her Dreams
Mama H.: ~puts extra ramen in Kagome's backpack~

31. 10 Things
Kagome: ~shakes head~

32. My Dearest Sister!!!!
Jaken: She still didn't write back.

33. A Lazy Afternoon
Inuyasha: ~grumbles~ That fucking fly.

34. Original Dialogues
Sango: Monk!
Miroku: I really would prefer you used my name.
Sango: Stop complaining and help me with the twins!

35. Jealous
Miroku: The road to enlightenment is a travel lasting the whole life.

36. Where?
Naraku: Yeah... Let's relax a bit while the idiots run around chasing their tails.

37. Adorable Curse
Inuyasha: ~tries and fails to shoo a flock of butterflies away~
38. In Her Mirror (2017-08-11)

39. A Party
Inuyasha: I already have a Kouga pinata stored for her next birthday
Kagome: Why I'm not surprised?

40. Lemony Goodness
Miroku: Look! There's three more chapters of this fic...!

41. Heart of Gold
Inuyasha: Keh!

42. Late Date
Rin: Master Inuyasha is the nicest guardian ever, even if he tries to hide how nice he is.

43. Inu
Miroku: Say 'papa'
One of the Twins: Inu!

44. A Dream of a Monk
Sango: I swear, one day...
Miroku: Oh, my lovely Sango, they all know you love me with passion.

45. Cat Comb
Sesshomaru: Hm.
(Translation: This one isn't nice. He just found it useful to allow this one's ward to keep that comb)

46. Proving
Kouga: Stupid dog breath...

47. A Hot Welcome Kiss
Miroku: You don't know how amazing it is to come back home and be greeted by your lovely wife...

48. Noodle Trail
Mama H.: Ah, young love...

49. New Work
Sango: It's so exciting to be on an airship. I'm so proud of myself that I managed to become one of the security staff on Ah-Un. The only down side is the monk... Do you think I could ask Taisho to switch places with Miss Higurashi?

50. Her Worshiper
Miroku: Ah, my divine lady, you are always in my mind.
Sango: I do hope so. Otherwise you'd be facing a divine punishment.

51. A Perfect Day
Bankotsu: Yeah, we had to switch headquarters after that.

52. Hot Dog
Inuyasha: Feh! See that? The wench always distracts me!

53. Touch
Sesshomaru: Hm. Kagura...

54. Celestial Lad
Inuyasha; Keh! Vicious wench! ~looks lovingly at the miko~

55. Sunscreen
Mrs H.: I guess I startled him a little.

56. The Sun and the Moon
Myouga: ~sobs~ Oh, master Inuyasha, you can be such a good speaker when you want to!
Inuyasha: Whatever.

57. Hojo's Encounter
Souta: Yup, he's clueless.

58. Surprise Attack
Shippou: Ha! Dumb dog!
Inuyasha: ~from a distance~ I heard that!
Shippou: Oops!

59. The Club. Origins
Souta: The first rule of the Club is to always have ramen.

60. Ba-basement
Jakotsu: Such a pity Ren blew up that place not too long after that...

61. Roleplay
Kagome: Who knew Sango was as much as a hentai as Miroku?
Miroku: Oh no, I humble myself before my Sango's creativity!

62. Before He Comes
Sess Mom: I just adore my nephew. He has the cutest ears. Pity he's already taken.

63. Lucky Wolf
Ayame: Kouga should be grateful I wanted him after all that stuff.

64. Tessaiga Falls
Shippou: That was an odd day, yeah.

65. Coffee Break
Kagome: Stealing cups? Me? No...

66. Best B-Day Gift
Eri: Yeah, shirtless dudes were a plus

67. Coffee Break. Sequel
Inuyasha: Where's my mug AGAIN?!

68. The Club. Fists of Fire
Mama H.: I'm glad Souta found a big brother in Inuyasha, but he should've come to me first.

69. What They Should Do
Naraku: Curses!

70. Empty Room
Kagura: You lot are so dramatic.

71. Servant Brother
Inuyasha: Yeah, as if I was going to serve you, asshole.
Sesshomaru: It was an AU, stupid half-breed. This one would never let you in his household.
Inuyasha: As if I wanted to go to your dog house!

72. Stash
Bankotsu: A giant schoolroom! Maybe it's friendly!

73. An Experiment
Miroku: Let's say that the results were beyond all we suspected.

74. Full Moon Run
Kagome: It's so nice to see Jinenji enjoys himself from time to time.

75. She Did It
Sango: What? You have no right to judge me, you want to do it too!

76. Nap time
Kagome: Aww, so cute!

77. Wrinkle free
Kaede: Well, sometimes I feel sorry for the boy.

78. Trick-Tock
Shippou: Sometimes I want to bite his ears off...

79. Little Gifts
Miroku: There is no better way to keep a man interested than by challenging him in some way.
Sango: Wanna my hand challenge your face?

80. The Lift
Sango: It was so comfortable.. I understand why Kagome ditched that metal contraption.

81. Cookie Jar Monster
Kagome: I wondered where Shippou was...

82. A General and a Princess
Miroku: I see from where Inuyasha got his awkwardness when it comes to ladies...

83. Enlightenment
Kagome: You pervert!

84. A General and a Princess 2
Sango: And here we see from where he got his foul mouth.

85. A Secret Club
Kaede: The real party starts when Lady Sesshomaru's Mother and I join the other ladies.

86. Would You Consider?
Jaken: Stupid humans, so easily tricked by superior Lord Sesshomaru!

87. Would You Consider? Pt 2
Kikyou: I'm glad that Inuyasha found someone who could love him like I couldn't. And knowing it was my reincarnation... At first I had been angry, but then I realized that it was still my soul, inside Kagome. In a way my love for him reached him through her, purer and not tainted by my limitations.

88. A Gift
Kagome: Aww, my cute puppy!
Inuyasha: Keh!

89. Roped Into Helping
Ayumi: I guess we went a bit too far...

90. Weak Spot
Inuyasha: Ayame is vicious...
Kouga: Don't even start.

91. Fox Files
Shippou: See? One slip is all it takes!

92. How Many?
Kaede: Rumors are to be expected when you are traveling the land and causing havoc like the gang does.

93. The Uniform
Miroku: So he had a thing for the odd outfit!

94. Purr, Purr
Sango: Hey! This is confidential!
Kagome: ~giggles~ Not anymore.

95. A Cat and a Boy-Dog
Inuyasha: I honestly don't know what it is that makes all the cats around want to sleep on top of my stomach.
Kagome: I kinda understand them.

96. Wolf's Bride
Inuyasha: Stupid wolf
Kouga: ~from a distance~ I heard that!
Inuyasha: Good, you dumb fuck!

97. Ayame's Revenge
Sango: Well, that was unexpected...

98. Ayame's Revenge Part 2
Kagome: But not unwelcome..
Kouga: Hey!

99. The Old Lady Who Overcame Time..
Kagome: Aww, so cute!

100. In A Cherry Garden
Naraku: I, Naraku, am myself a great poet. I am pretty pleased to see my mercenaries partake in art.
Sesshomaru: Hm. He made mistakes. For such errors one should be beheaded, but this one cares not for the pathetic human poetry.

101. Doggy Back Ride (2018-05-03)
Mama H." Yup, way better than taxi. And nature-friendly, because is running on noodles.

102. To Make Sure
Sango: You know them, suspecting they would run for the hills wasn't that off the mark.
Miroku: Especially since that was what they did.
Kaede: I barely got the cup and sake stored back away and they were gone.
Shippou: We had to entertain the wedding guests!

103. Fox Files Pt 2
Shippou: You know how scary it is when Inuyasha gets into his 'father mode'?

104. Forest Meeting
Kouga: See that mutt? He just can't be loyal to his former love, despite promising her his life. See? He's not worthy of Kagome's love!
Ayame: You're one to talk.

105. Jingle
Sesshomaru: This was a valuable lesson. Always send your enemies noisy gifts.

106. Wait
Kagome: Aww, my romantic puppy...
Inuyasha: Can you stop calling me puppy already?

107. That Lucky Brat
Shippou: Jealous, eh?

108. That Stupid Brat
Miroku: I see that our young Shippou has a silver tongue, just like me.
Sango: And the ability to insult people without trying from Inuyasha...

109. Her Scent
Kagome: Aww, my p=
Inuyasha: Call me a puppy and there will be consequences!
Miroku: Will you show her how big of a dog you are,my friend? Aargh, was just kidding...!

110. Karma
Miroku; Ah, so true...

111. Souta's Project
Grandpa H.: To say it wasn't amusing would be a lie.

112. Dogtree
Sesshomaru: Hm. This one would never let a female order him around.
Kagura: Of course, of course.

113. Cuddle Buddy
Mrs. H.: ~puts the little dolls on a shelf~ Ah, young love...

114. Like Her
Naraku: Kikyou, notice me!

115. On His Shoulders
Mama H.: How could I not adore him? He's just so precious.

116. Trouble
Sango: I take great pride in teaching all my babies to fight. You don't know when it can come in handy.

117. Better Sword
Inuyasha; Keh!

118. How To Ruin The Tree
Kagome: We burned the wig after that.

119. Fishing
Shippou: I'm a big, strong youkai, see?

120. Telenovela AU
Mrs H.: I'd love to watch it on TV.

121. Hate
Sesshomaru: Hm
(Translation: I hate you all)

122. Bad Guy's Dream
Naraku: That wench tricked me!

123. Marks
Yuka: Tattoos are so cool!

124. Human Man
Kikyou: And here I was, thinking I knew Inuyasha so well...

125. Training Partner
Inuyasha: Keh! Who's stupid now?

126. Youkai Fight
Sango: See? Training done well can be a lot of fun.

127. Fox Files Part 3
Miroku: ~chuckles~

128. Bedroom Swap
Kagome: ~giggles~ Oh, poor Inuyasha, startled by my mom!
Inuyasha: It wasn't funny!

129. His Son
Miroku: See? Karma.

130. Who's The Cursed Doggie?
Inuyasha: Really? You thought that stupid dog to be me?
Miroku: Well...
Shippou: He was very good at impressions.

131. Inuyasha no Mori
Inuyasha: Hey! That's confidential!

132. Miroku's Part
Sango: Yeah, and every time it is me who nurses him until his hangover is gone.

133. Day Out
Kagome: We like when the boys are protecting us, but we're capable of fighting, you know.

134. Fang
Totosai: Do I know you...?

135. Anniversary Story
Sango: Aww so cute!

136. Courage To Dream
Kagome: I'm so happy for him.

137. The L Potion
Sango: You can blame me for suspecting the monk.

138. Second Best
Kouga: See? I'm the one left alone here.

139. A Brotherly Advice
Myouga: My lord would be so happy to see his sons getting along!

140. Play Boy
Miroku: That was fun!

141. A Treasure
Inuyasha: Wh- You can't prove anything!
Kagome: Sure we can.

142. Bath Time
Kouga; He had tentacles EVERYWHERE.

143. (FS) At the Den
Inuyasha: Keh, the kid did well.

144. Brush
Sango: Uh...Just don't think too much of it!

145. His Fault
Rin: My lord can't admit he likes his brother. But I sure do, master Inuyasha is great. Not as great as Lord Sesshomaru, but still.
Sesshomaru: Hm.

146. Role Model
Shippou: And how is a kid going to grow up to be a decent person?

147. HISHE - Mukotsu
Kagome: Yup, it went just like that.

148. The Sword of Power
Souta: Now I wish I did the same...

149. Superheroes
Kagome: No capes!

150. Inuyama
Inuyasha: Hm.
Sesshomaru: Keh.

151. Friendly Advice
Miroku: And it was such a good plan...

152. Ramen King
Inuyasha: Yeah, that's a paradise.

153. Table Turned
Miroku: Karma, yet again.
154. The Observer (2018-12-17)

155. A Bite of Heaven
Sango: We always appreciate when Kagome brings her amazing food.

156. Body Swap
Shippou: I'd like to swap bodies with Inuyasha and then pay him back for all his hits.
Miroku: Wouldn't you be just hitting his own body then?

157. An Ordinary Miracle Girl
Kagome: Aww, so cute!

158. Other Boys
Izayoi: Ah, my sweet Inuyasha. You aren't the best gentleman out there, but I'm glad you found a girl who appreciate you for who you are.

159. Her Boy
Eri: It must be real love...

160. Parting
Kagome: That was dry, Inuyasha.
Inuyasha: Don't complain, wench.

161. True Form
Shippou: Some thins are meant to remain secret.

162. If I Found Myself in IY
Alannada: I'd teach Inuyasha swear in Polish. In fact I'd teach everyone swear in Polish.

163. Pop!
Kirara: Nyan!
(Translation; I was that close to tear the thing to little bits!)

164. New Work. Sequel Pt 1
Inuyasha: See? Whenever she goes she wraps guys around her finger!

165. Inuyasha Major Arcana
Grandpa: I'd sell the cards in the shrine shop.
Miroku: I can ask Shippou to draw them, but we have to split profits. What do you say 30 to 70?
Grandpa: What? Don't mock me, young man! 70 to 30 sounds more like it!

166. Make Up
Naraku: Why are you looking at me like that? It's not my fault they weren't useful anymore.

167. Stuck
Inuyasha: Keh! Stupid futuristic contraption.

168. Sneaky Shadow
Rin: ~giggles and wiggles fingers~
Inuyasha: Heh, cheeky wench.

169. Body Pillow
Sango: You're better than the Hiraikotsu.
Miroku: I bet, I'm warmer! And have many built-in options!

170. Very Sad Story
Souta: I kinda regret I didn't jump in, but I didn't want to become a test subject.

171. Sad Story. How It Went
Kagome: Yeah, I wouldn't mind being a hanyou like Inuyasha.
Inuyasha: Crazy wench.

172. Kouga's Test
Miroku: We already established Kouga has a thing for Kagome's outfit. I can't blame him.

173. New Work. Sequel Pt 2
Miroku: Yeah!
Sango: Oh, well, we will have to figure out how to tamper your hentai side.
Miroku: Oh, tame me, my lovely exterminator!

174. A "Final" Battle
Naraku: What? They had a final battle and didn't call me?

175. The Chase
Inuyasha: Now, that is a chase!

176. Hanyou's New Groove
Naraku: They are just ignorant morons, all of them.
Byakuya: Yeah, you look fabulous.

177. Safe Place
Kagome: ~rubs Inuyasha's ear~ Aww, my poor Inu, you came to me to protect you!

178. The Circle
Shippou: It's just normal for a pack to groom each other.

179. Night Visitors
Kagome: Maybe it's the right time to introduce Kouga to a watch?
Inuyasha: Nah, it's not worth it.

180. Pursued
Miroku: ~sheepish laugh~

181. Seven
Souta: I'm scarred for life...

182. Morning
Kanna: Don't you dare judge me.

183. Coming Home
Miroku: Ah, Lady Kaede, we are fond of you a well.

184. Tag
Shippou: Why wasn't I invited to play?

185. Tabi
Miroku: Stink pellets... Keh... They're perfectly fresh, only a tad dusty...

186. Tummy Rubs
Inuyasha: Try to laugh at me. I dare you to try to laugh at me!

187. A Hollow
Kagome: Ah, Inuyasha, let me hug you!

188. Inuyasha is Angry
Inuyasha: Grrr!

189. Moon Singer
Kouga: I'm going to be a pop star, you just wait a few centuries! Chicks will be screaming on my concerts and throwing their chest bindings on the scene and the crowd will shout my name!
Ginta: But of course, Kouga.
Hakkaku; Totally!

190. Opening
Kirara: Meow.
(Translation: Really, I'm a cool, strong cat, but I can't carry everyone)

191. Better Version
Kikyou: I do hope you realize we're teaming up to kill Naraku more easily. There's nothing between us.
Kouga: Of course, my darling.
Kikyou: ~facepalm~

192. Youki Level
Inuyasha: ~swings Tessaiga around~ Kamehameha!

193. All Thanks To The Fox
Kaede: It was a nice change, but I must confess I'd miss the brash hanyou.
Inuyasha: Keh!

194. Yourself
Miroku: Let's say that it was pretty unexpected and enlightening.

195. A Kind of Heirloom
Sango: We're just glad the soul collectors didn't want to hurt Kagome.
Miroku: Yes. I'm sure Inuyasha could take care of them, but they can be helpful.

196. Goodbye
Kagome: Oh, my poor puppy.
Inuyasha: Oi! Don't call me that!
Kagome ~hugs him~
Inuyasha: K-keh...

197. Eavesdropping
Kagome: Oh. My. Goodness! I didn't know!
Miroku: Yes! And then the volume ended on a cliffhanger with Keiichi demeaning of Skuld to do a dimensional scythe!
Kagome: Oh, no!
(Bonus points if you know for what Miroku drops the spoilers for)

198. Armor
Sango's Dad: Yeah! That's my girl!
Miroku: Excuse me, but who are you, good sir?
Sango's Dad: Your worst nightmare, young man.
Miroku: Huh?
Sango's Dad: So, you want to marry my little girl...

199. The boy who overcame time
Kagome: Oooh, the young love...
Souta: Shut up, sis! It's nothing like that!
Sesshomaru: This one hopes so. You would regret thinking that a mere human can court this one's ward.
Rin: ~gives Sesshomaru a look~ Hm.

The following chapters became separate stories you can find on my profile:
37. Adorable Curse
57. Hojo's Encounter - called The Great Detective
59. Tessaiga Fails
65. Coffee Break
89. Roped Into Helping

So... Now... I guess we're going form 300...

Chapter Text

Inuyasha was an obnoxious boy, one a bit on the too active side, even if he pretty often lazed around, usually on tree branches or her bed. And even then a part of him was still moving, would it be an ear or a twitching foot.

Kagome glanced back over her shoulder. Inuyasha was sitting - of course - on her bed, his attention on a photo album. She quickly looked back at her homework, before he could see her attention was on him. He was a demanding puppy, one wanting a lot of attention - at least she saw it that way. She had to find out a way to sneak out of the room and prepare the thing. They stayed in the future to do the thing, but she was pretending to study, so he wouldn't get suspicious. But how to sneak out of the room and - more importantly - from under the watchdog's vigilant care?

It wasn't something she pondered often. Despite his shortcomings she actually liked to spend time around him. And he obviously liked her company too, even if he shouted that he didn't.

Still... She couldn't let her family do the thing without her help.

An idea came to her mind. One wicked, but highly effective one. Without dwelling on it for too long Kagome reached to her desk drawer and pulled out of it one of a couple bottles stored there. It had sunshine yellow color. Hiding it close to herself Kagome unscrewed the vial and put in on the desk as casually as she could.

She heard a sniff. And another. And then she heard a thud.

When she looked back Inuyasha was sprawled across the bed, his face buried in the photo album, unconscious.

"Say, Inuyasha," she almost sang. "Wanna eat some ramen?"

No reply. Not even a twitch of an ear.

"Yes!" she jumped off of her chair and almost ran towards the door, when something caught her attention. One of Inuyasha's hands was hanging off of the bed, fingers relaxed. She glanced back at the yellow bottle on the desk.

A twinkle glittered in her eye as she slowly stepped back to the desk and picked up the bottle.

"Well..." she said as she sat on the floor next to her bed. "Let's have some fun, shall we?"

A couple of minutes later, a kitsune smile on her lips, Kagome twisted the cork on the bottle closed and slid her window open just a little, so the room would air in a short - but not too short - time. Then she left the passed out hanyou in peace, hoping the nail polish on his pretty long claws could dry and harden before Inuyasha woke up.

When she entered the kitchen she found everyone gathered there. Souta looked at her grin and paled.

"What did you do to Big Dog Brother?" he inquired in a tone suggesting he feared the answer.

"Go and have a look," she supplied with a chuckle. The boy hesitated for a while, before he cautiously made his way to her room. A moment later he was back, trying to silence his giggled by a hand over his mouth.

"Mom, can I have the camera, please?"

"It's charging in the living room," the middle-aged woman said and watched the boy run away. Then she looked at her smug daughter. "Kagome?"

"Do you remember the fancy yellow mail polish Eri gave me for birthday? The one that never went along with any of my outfits?" Kagome grinned like a mad girl when her mom gave a nod. "Let's say it looks very pretty with red kimono. I'm sure it will compliment his amber eyes pretty nicely."

Chapter Text

The Higurashi family was a force one should never underestimate. On the surface they were like any other family of three generations, but there was far more to them than what one could see. They were stubborn, intelligent, not without the sense of humor. And their greatest strength was the ability to cooperate, despite their differences.

After a minute or two of enjoying Souta's brilliant pictures of Inuyasha's sunshine-kissed claws the family got to work. There were no directions needed, everyone already knew what to do.

While Kagome and her mom worked in the kitchen, finishing the last cooking, Souta and grandpa went to the living room. The boy rearranged the furniture while the old man sprayed some flower scented air refresher. Then they went to grandpa's room to bring in a couple of boxes and put them under a decorative cloth.

Half an hour later the table was set, the pillows prepared and the whole family sighing in pleasure after their labor. And they were just in time, since they heard a thud overhead. Mama Higurashi rushed everyone to their respective spots.

.

Inuyasha woke up groggily. He blinked when he realized he had been sleeping on Kagome's bed again. That was at the same nice and annoying, he shouldn't be sleeping. He was supposed to watch over...

...Wait a minute, where was the wench?!

He sat up quickly and saw that her chair was empty, her notebooks left open on the top of the desk. Inuyasha growled and sniffed the air. The window was open to let in the fresh breeze, but he still could smell Kagome wasn't there for a while now and that there was a trace of a certain dizzying scent he had once smelled. He frowned as he tried to remember.

Nail polish! That wench just had to paint her nails with him around! He glared at a bottle of the cursed thing left on the desk. He scowled when he remembered that she never painted her nails when she wasn't going out in this time.

Which meant...

The wench went on one of those cursed date!

Thinking about the crafty girl who had knocked him unconscious to sneak out of the house, Inuyasha jumped off of the bed and ran to the door. He was going to follow that wench and bring her back here, kicking and yelling, then dump her in the well and...

As soon as he opened the door a sweet floral scent filled his nose.

Sneaky vixen had covered her scent by some modern perfumes. He smirked. It was smart of her, but it wouldn't work outside, even if the artificial floral scent filled the whole corridor... Besides, he was going to outsmart her and ask her mother for her location. He leaped down the stairs and entered the living room. There he stopped and stared.

The table was set with the most wonderful looking (and smelling) food. The whole place looked like the family was expecting someone important to come, they even had a tea brewing set prepared in the corner. There were other new things too, but he didn't pay them much attention. He stayed there for a second, just smelling the food. He was a man who enjoyed eating and never shied away from it, but he wasn't a pig, he wouldn't eat food that wasn't meant for him (well, unless it was a lesson for the brat to eat faster). But then he decided to go look for Mrs. Higurashi and ask where Kagome had went. It was better to catch her before the important guests arrived, so he wouldn't bother her or cause problems.

As soon as he turned to leave he was stopped by four people standing behind him. He blinked at the whole Higurashi family standing in the doorway, everyone in silly triangular hats on top of their head.

"Eh?" Inuyasha blinked and tilted his head. Well, Kagome was home, it saved him the trouble of going to drag her back. He just hoped to get some answers/

"Happy birthday, Inuyasha!" the miko approached him and put a similar red hat on top of the stunned hanyou's head.

"Birthday?" he blinked at her. She nodded with a warm smile, the one that made his knees go weak.

"Happy birthday!" Souta ran to bump his fist against his side in a mock punch. The old man just nodded and grunted in a friendly manner.

"Yes, happy birthday," Mrs. Higurashi waited for her daughter to hug Inuyasha before she did the same. He was so surprised he did nothing to free himself from their embraces.

"What's... birthday?" Inuyasha looked at the smiling humans n front of him. They made no sense to him.

"Birthday is your own holiday," Souta said and pulled him to one of the pillows by the table. "You have a feast and get gifts from everyone!"

"It's a celebration to honor one's anniversary of birth," Mama added. "So you know that you're appreciated by those around you."

"I asked Myouga for the date," Kagome confessed and took a seat next to him. "Say, do you like it?"

She looked a bit anxiously at the silent hanyou. Inuyasha lifted his eyes from the bowl in front of him. He looked uncertain.

"Why someone would want to celebrate the anniversary of my birth?" he asked.

"We do," Kagome said. "Because we are your friends. Sango and the rest would be here too, if they could cross the portal, you know. I have the gifts from them, but you will have to wait to see them."

"But... There's nothing to celebrate," Inuyasha muttered.

"Of course there is. I'm sure your parents were very happy to have you," Mama said in an encouraging tone.

"They died the day I was born," Inuyasha's ears drooped. The Higurashi family's smiles faded. "I mean mom was wounded with a spear when I was about to be born and died from blood loss. Then my old man came and revived her, but he got killed by the same bastard who had wounded her. Sesshomaru said that the night of my whelping was the darkest one in the family history."

Everyone just stared at him for a second.

"Dear," Mama said softly. "They loved you and I'm sure if things were different they'd be happy to see you grow..."

"And don't you dare think that Sesshomaru was wrong," Kagome cut in. "Now, we put a lot of work into this, so you better appreciate it and cheer up. It's your holiday and you can eat as much as you want to!"

"Yeah! And then you'll see how cool gifts we have for you!" Souta nodded enthusiastically. The hanyou glanced at the four humans, who had invited him to eat with them, who treated him like a normal person, who wanted to celebrate an anniversary of a half-breed's whelping. And, even if he had some friends in the past, he knew that they were there only because of a certain miko babbling beside him.

He didn't care much about the gifts, since he already had all he could ever want, right there, at his side. He outstretched a hand to touch her when....

...His eye caught something flashing. Something yellow.

"What the hell!?"

"That's more like the hanyou we all know," grandpa muttered to his daughter-in-law, giggling behind her hand and watching the silver-haired boy glaring at his granddaughter rolling on the floor and laughing.

Chapter Text

A bunch of little groups were scattered across a cave with starry sky painted on the ceiling. There was a hooded figure holding an odd hat in their hands in front of them, blocking their way out of the cave.

"The only way you can go back to where you were is to accept the Sorting Hat's judgment," said the figure.

"Why do you think that this Sesshomaru cares for other beings' judgment?" asked the daiyoukai standing tall in front of his group.

"Listen, I am trapped here too, so just get at it, so we can all go home, okay?" asked the figure in less booming and more natural and tired voice.

"Let's be done with this!" Inuyasha sat on a simple stool and scowled when an old, funny-smelling hat was put on his head, over his ears.

"Gryffindor!" called the hat. "You are a stubborn, hot-headed dude, who is also brave."

"Keh, whatever." Inuyasha stood up, threw the hat at the hooded figure and went over a line drew between the stool and the cave entrance. He didn't leave, but stopped just behind the line waiting for his friends.

Kagome went next, smiling at the figure, who adjusted their hood and sighed as they put the hat on the girl's head.

"Hufflepuff," the hat decided. "You are hard-working and kind."

"Oi! She's with me, so she ain't sorted to that Huffy-puffy thing!"

"Oh, be quiet," Kagome patted the hanyou on the shoulder as soon as she stood beside him. "It's just a silly, meaningless game. Shippou... Oh."

"I, Naraku, will not be forced to wait for everyone else to be sorted!" Naraku glared at the miko in defiance. "Sort me, you inferior head adornment!"

"Ravenclaw! Because you're focused on self-improving and trying to outsmart your opponents."

"Because he's too weak to just win a fair fight." Inuyasha muttered. Naraku raised his nose in the air and went out of the cave, not waiting for his incarnations, who looked like they didn't mind that at all. Kagura winked at Sesshomaru, who pretended not to notice, but his mokomoko fluffed out a bit.

"Now me!" Shippou jumped on top of the stool. The hooded figure put the hat on his head with an invisible smile of relief.

"Hufflepuff, because you are nice and helpful."

"What? He gets to be sorted with Kagome?!" Inuyasha glared at the giggling kitsune hiding in Kagome's embrace. Meanwhile Sango took a seat on the stool and got sorted to Gryffindor, which obviously made the hanyou less annoyed. At least some of his friends were sorted to the same group he did

"This Sesshomaru will take this turn," the daiyoukai approached the stool.

"Fine by me," said the hooded figure and glanced to Miroku, who had been itching to get sorted after Sango, but now just nodded in agreement. There was no use arguing over it.

"Slytherin! Because you're an ambitious individual with strong sense of tradition," said the hat as soon as it rested on top of his fabulous hair.

"Go figure," commented the hanyou.

"Be silent, half-breed," Sesshomaru stood as far from his brother as possible, deciding to wait for his group. "Rin, come."

"Yes, my lord!" Rin jumped to the stool and smiled widely at the hooded figure when they put the hat on her.

"Hufflepuff!" declared the hat. When everyone was busy cheering the girl Hakudoushi, Kanna, Byakuya and Kagura sneaked to the stool and got sorted to Ravenclaw. Kagura waved at everyone as they left the cave, following after Sesshomaru and Rin. Finally Miroku sat on the seat.

"Ravenclaw!" called the hat. "For you always try to improve yourself and are pretty wise."

"That's good, I guess?" Miroku asked the hooded figure, who shrugged.

"Every house has its flaws and good features," they said.

"Come over here, monk, we have places to go!" Inuyasha called.

"Oh, don't be grumpy, it was fun.," Kagome giggled and pulled the lost in thought monk beyond the line. Meanwhile Kouga rushed forward and got sorted to Gryffindor, to his utter unhappiness. It only got worse when his faithful friends landed in Hufflepuff. Ayame went after them, getting sorted to Slytherin. Kikyou became Ravenclaw while everyone was trying to usher the unhappy Kouga out of the cave, because he wanted to pick a fight with the hat over being sorted to a different group than his pack and put in the same Inuyasha was in. Kaede shook her head at the youkai antics and thanked the hat for being sorted to the same group her sister was in, then they went out of the cave together, followed by three wolves dragging the struggling Kouga out of the cave. Behind them went the hooded figure, holding the hat in their hands.

And it was when Jaken finally realized that he was the last one left in the cave.

"Hey! Don't leave me there!" he cried and bounced off of the barrier of the magical line.

It took two days for Rin to convince Lord Sesshomaru to go back and get him.

Chapter Text

Shippou was an observant kid. It was a kitsune thing to notice all the little details he could later use in his tricks or in transformation. What he was focusing now. as he was riding on Inuyasha's shoulder, was the different hairstyles his friends wore and how they fit their personality.

There was Sango with her high ponytail. It wasn't a traditional look for a woman, but she looked pretty with her wavy tail and it was keeping her hair out of her face when she fought. A neat, practical and pretty look for her.

There was Kagome with her soft wavy hair loosely falling on her back. It was also an unorthodox look, for priestesses usually wore low tails. But it made her look warmer and softer, less strict than a traditional miko.

Inuyasha, he had his hair wind blown and untamed, just like his personality. Oh, sometimes when he thought no one saw, he let Kagome comb his mane, but it was just showing how much trust and affection he had for her. Long hair for most youkai were a show of health and power, so it didn't surprise Shippou that despite living in a forest and fighting a lot Inuyasha refused all ties and hair cuts. He hoped to get his own hair as long or even longer than Inuyasha's, but he planned to tie it up just like his dad had done.

And there was Miroku, the monk who didn't shave his hair. On the contrary, he let it grow a bit, so he could tie it back to make a little rat's tail. Shippou looked back at the monk talking with the girls behind them. He couldn't remember Miroku undoing his tail, ever.

That was odd, the rest sometimes did their hair differently (he could remember Inuyasha once letting Kagome pulling his mane in a braid because of working in a muddy rice field) but Miroku always had the tail, even while bathing.

The little kitsune wondered how actually Miroku would look with his hair falling on his shoulders freely. And, because otherwise he was rather bored, he decided to ask Miroku about it.

He started by leaping to Miroku's shoulder and sitting there, flashing the surprised monk a brilliant smile. Inuyasha cocked an ear back towards the rest of his group and it was the only sign that he noticed the abrupt disappearance of the kitsune from his shoulder.

"Miroku? Why do you always keep your hair in a tail?" the kit asked bluntly, like his (very secret) role model.

"Ah, it's simple, young Shippou," Miroku grinned. Kagome and Sango both looked at him in interest and even Kirara opened an eye from where she napped in Sango's arms. "The tie I wear is a seal."

"A seal? What for you need a seal?" Kagome asked.

"Glad you asked, sweet Lady Kagome!" Miroku lifted his right hand. "See, it's like the beads sealing my Wind Tunnel, but it's a far more serious thing."

"What can be more serious than a black hole in your hand, monk?" Sango raised an eyebrow. Shippou looked hopefully at the man.

"It's so delightful that you have so many questions!" Miroku grabbed Kagome's hand. "If you wish I can show you what the tie is sealing... If the rest just agrees to wait an hour or so here..."

"Over my dead body!" Inuyasha practically materialized between the two reiki users and removed Kagome's hand from Miroku's.

"No, Inuyasha, over his dead body," Sango growled from behind the chuckling monk.

"Oh, hush, I was just jesting!" Shippou shook his head at the adults, who as usual got sidetracked. "The lovely Sango is the only one I want to show anything. And besides it'd be unwise to reveal what is sealed by the famous dragon whisker tie!"

"A dragon whisker tie? What do you mean?" Shippou asked, hoping to bring the discussion to the important stuff. Miroku nodded, ignoring the glaring trio.

"Yes, young Shippou. This tie I wear is not an ordinary one. In fact it is a whisker of a dragon that lives in the northern mountains."

"Alright," Kagome said from behind Inuyasha. "So can't you tell us what it is that is sealed bu that whisker?"

Miroku grinned.

"That is a secret I prefer to keep to myself. But if you wish to know it so much, just lay a gentle caress of your lips on mine and- Aah!"

"Stupid monk," Inuyasha grumbled and glanced over the collapsed man to Sango brandishing her boomerang. "So what, we leave him to catch up t us?"

"Sure we do," Sango stepped over the fallen man and went to walk with Kagome. Inuyasha glared once more at Miroku before walking after them. Shippou, who had barely dodged the hit of Sango's weapon, walked to stand over the monk. His fingers twitched when the thought about revealing Miroku's secret, but sadly the man was laying facing upwards and he could hear Inuyasha calling his name.

Maybe next time...