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Out of their rag-tag team of fighters, I hadn't expected myself to be the one to outlive everyone else. If I had been asked, I would have guessed Inuyasha, maybe Shippou. But Fate has a funny way of playing out.

It had been a pure and noble wish; that was for certain. A hanyou, wishing for a human to have his lifespan. That was exactly how he had worded it, too. After that final, bloody battle with Naraku, I handed him the jewel. The accursed thing that had taken us close to a year to complete, I handed it to him to do with as he pleased. I remember it clearly. Inuyasha hadn't hesitated. He held it tightly in his hard for a moment, and then made his wish.

'Please, Shikon no Tama, give Kagome my lifespan.' So very noble. With his lifespan, we would live together forever. Everlasting love. The jewel had glowed brightly before vanishing. And it had given Inuyasha exactly what he had asked for. I got his lifespan. HIS. The jewel had taken what he said completely literally. By giving me Inuyasha's lifespan, he was left with one of a human.

Looking back, it's almost funny. Almost. The cosmos playing a joke on the pitiful players of life. I sincerely hope that the powers that be are having a good laugh at my sake if it is indeed a joke, because no one else is.

I watched them all grow old and die. Sango, Miroku...even Inuyasha. I'll never forget the day he died. I cried for days, weeks, months...truthfully, I have no idea how long I cried for. He was the last of us, besides me, of course. Sango and Miroku had died almost ten years earlier, within a month of the other. There was still Shippou, somewhere. He had gone off on his own. I still don't know where he is.

Kirara is still with me. I guess I can't forget her. We've lived through the centuries together. I've seen events that I had only ever read about. I wish I hadn't. But there's nothing I can do now, is there?

In a way, there is. Tomorrow is my 15th birthday. I could stop myself. I could warn myself of the wish. Tell myself to make Inuyasha word it differently. But that would screw up the timeline or something, wouldn't it?

I spend the first day of my adventures on the other side of Japan in the spot where I first gained this life. The ruins of Naraku's castle, the place of the final battle. If I close my eyes, I can picture that day. I can see sun shining. I can see Miroku staring at his finally kazaana-less hand, before grabbing Sango and finally kissing her. An apology for the way he hid his feelings during our travels. I can see Kouga handing me the shards from his legs. I can see Kohaku giving up his shard, expecting to never see the living world again, only to be revived a few minutes later by Sesshoumaru. I can see Inuyasha embracing me, saying "It's finally over" over and over again. And then I see myself hand him the jewel.

Right back where I started. But...it's finally time. Even after all these years, it's still here. A single black crystal that is Naraku's power. No one could touch it. The evil that surrounds it would kill those with holy powers on contact.

I hug it close to me, finally able to die after all these years.