- Fic: Present Time 1/27
- Fic: Present Time 2/27
- Fic: Present Time 3/27
- Fic: Present Time 4/27
- Fic: Present Time 5/27
- Fic: Present Time 6/27
- Fic: Present Time 7 (Part 1)/27
- Fic: Present Time 7 (Part 2)/27
- Fic: Present Time 8/27
- Fic: Present Time 9/27
- Fic: Present Time 10/27
- Fic: Present Time 11/27
- Fic: Present Time 12/27
- Fic: Present Time 13/27
- Fic: Present Time 14/27
- Fic: Present Time 15/27
- Fic: Present Time 16/27
- Fic: Present Time 17/27
- Fic: Present Time 18/27
- Fic: Present Time 19/27
- Fic: Present Time 20/27
- Fic: Present Time 11/27
Title: Present Time 18/27
Author: animealam (a.k.a. alandrem)
Rating: This chapter is R
Warnings: Some characters may be a bit OOC. Violence, the mention of drug use, attempted rape, and bad language.
Summary: Inuyasha discovers the present is more dangerous than he was led to believe.
Disclaimer: I do not own Inuyasha. Although I’ll probably add a couple more characters of my own imagination.
Author’s Notes: Ok, on this chapter there are going to be some mentions of sex and rape and the damage it does, this is one of the reasons the rating went up. It is not overly descriptive, but telosphilos and I deemed it would work with were we’re going with the fic.
Thanks again to my editors evercool resurrected and Naoko Cat Girl
Asami watched him go and decided to get Kagome so they could talk. Her daughter was in her room trying to work on one of her many extra credit assignments, without much success, as there were a lot of things on her mind, when she found her.
“Would you like to join me for some dessert dear? We could go out if you would like.” She asked gently.
“Dessert sounds fine, but can I take a rain check on going out? I get the feeling I’m not going to want people to overhear you chewing me out.” Kagome said with a resigned sigh.
“Honey, I’m not going to chew you out, but I do want to know why you went off on him like that; as well as discuss matters pertaining to his proposal and how you want to handle that.” Asami wished getting her daughter to talk frankly with her was as simple as getting Inuyasha to do the same. She was sure Kagome had been keeping a lot of her worries quiet lately to avoid distressing her. “I went and got ice cream today. Let’s make sundaes or something to celebrate ok? Even if it began with a rocky start, it is still a happy occasion.” Kagome had to smile at that comment; her mother always found the positive side of things, and it was indeed a happy occasion, one of the most important of her life. “And, really, I’m not angry with you, I just want to know what’s going on.”
“Ok, how can I pass up on an ice cream sundae?” Kagome said as she got up and followed her mother down the stairs. Asami and Kagome took their ice cream sundaes outside to sit under the Go-Shimboku tree.
“I’m glad it’s a warm night. I do not want to have to worry about Sota or Jii-chan listening in.” She stressed, knowing that those two were quite nosy and prone to spying to satisfy their interest. “I suspect Sota might have heard a bit of your interview with the police and I don’t want to make him too curious.” Asami tried to start the ball rolling using small talk.
“I guess so; I was surprised he did not ask me about the bruise on my face. Knowing him it’s rather strange. And tonight he seemed well aware who Lieutenant Watanabe was.” Kagome commented thoughtfully. Actually, Sota always asked whenever she ended up sporting a bruise or a scratch, knowing it usually had something to do with shard hunting and fighting demons. He always wanted her to tell him what ‘adventures’ she and Inuyasha encountered in the past.
“You can count on Sota to find things out,” Asami said with a gentle motherly smile, her youngest was just too inquisitive for his sake sometimes. “Don’t really know how he does it though.”
“Neither do I… just like Emi, she put two and two together and figured it out quite easily. I’m surprised the other girls didn’t,” she sounded puzzled. “Anyway, Inuyasha said something to her yesterday; and whatever it was got her off my back and she’s been redirecting Yuka’s attention away from us.” She paused and frowned thinking of her old friend, she was always a bit bossy but it was strange how she had taken an incredible dislike for the young hanyou when they had not even met before. Kagome continued with a sigh, “I think Yuka partially believes Inuyasha hit me or something. She has a lot of animosity towards him and keeps trying to push me at Hojou along with Arumi, but Arumi is just plain clueless.” Now her tone denoted annoyance at her friends, in the dim light from the lamps, and Asami could see it also reflected on her face.
“I see…” Ok, so the things that bothered her were starting to come out. She knew that oblivious boy was going to be part of the problem. “What do you think of Hojou? He seems like a nice boy, but not very sensible to me.”
“He is a nice guy, but, he is TOO nice.” Kagome stressed that, nice was ok, but he overdid it most of the times. Yuck! “He has the backbone of a jellyfish as far as I can tell and I don’t really like that.” She sounded a bit disgusted.
‘Of course after meeting Inuyasha there is no point of comparison, even if he most of the times is rather selfish and insensitive, he can still manage to be sweet and caring on occasions.’ Kagome thought and a dreamy expression crossed her face. She was so happy he chose her over Kykyou, and for the rest of their lives to boot.
“I also can’t believe how someone with grades as high as his is unable to see through Jii-chan’s ridiculous lies… I wouldn’t mind being his friend since he is a decent person, but I really don’t want to date him.” Her voice sounded again a bit disgusted at the prospect, especially since she had already dated him before.
“Do you feel like your friends are leading him on somehow, and propping up some sort of fiction that you want to date him?” Asami asked frowning slightly.
Peer pressure was always something to worry about with young people. They might push Kagome too hard, and she was not free anymore. Besides, Inuyasha was still too insecure and had lived such a lonely life, he would not understand that her daughter might feel she had no choice but to comply with her friends. That could lead to a lot of troubles for the young couple, if she had understood right; the commitment was for the rest of their lives and could not be undone. Hanyous and their mates lived long lives, so there was a long time to keep grudges created by misunderstandings, and she knew both were prone to do just that. Their quarrel in the afternoon was proof enough.
“Yes,” Kagome agreed with a sigh. “They have set me up on a couple dates with him; I usually try to refuse but… Arrgg! They agree without asking me about it first!” She was more than a little peeved about that. “I keep trying to get him to go out with someone else without explaining about Inuyasha, but he keeps taking it wrong. I’m starting to think he’s rather stupid for some things.” She said a bit exasperated at the dense young man.
“Well… he seems rather oblivious to the fact that your friends are the ones interested in starting a relationship, not you. But then sometimes people don’t see what they don’t want to.” Her daughter looked at her surprised since that was probably it.
“I don’t want to hurt him Mama; I don’t think it’s fair. So, I usually went out with him because it would be rude to stand him up and well… for something fun to do to take my mind off of our stuff in the past, or when I was really pissed at Inuyasha.” She admitted a bit chagrined, the young woman didn’t like to say words like that in front of her mother, but there was really no other way to explain how the young hanyou made her feel at times. Angry didn’t even begin to cover that. “Inuyasha does have a way of pissing me off often.”
“I can see that he would,” she had to smile a bit. He had little social skills and both were too stubborn. It was really a wonder they had fallen in love in the first place. “Darling I think you are going to have to hurt Hojou’s feelings. He wants a girlfriend, but you already have someone. And telling him that, is the only way he might leave you alone.” Asami finally said after thinking things over a bit. “He will get over it in time, and may still want to be friends. If you let your friends keep leading him on, it will only hurt everyone in the end. Accepting Inuyasha’s proposal changes your life even more than it was.”
She went on explaining some of her reservations; Kagome was still a teen regardless of how mature she thought her eldest daughter was. She was going to miss an important part of growing up, which was getting to know boys and date. But Asami also understood the deep bond Kagome and Inuyasha shared, and it was not just teen infatuation, it went much deeper than that; their souls were bonded. And even though she possessed no real spiritual powers, she could see it. Kagome needed to be a bit drastic, and not just with poor Hojou, but with Yuka too in order to avoid misunderstandings in her new relationship.
“I know.” She agreed with a resigned sigh knowing her mother was right no matter how she had wanted to avoid that. Yuka had been her best friend for… ages it seemed.
“I think you also have to tell them that Inuyasha is your boyfriend, I suppose you have not.” She paused and saw Kagome nod once confirming it. “I don’t think it is wise to mention he is your intended yet… but… you can’t hide him anymore, him being a hanyou from 500 years in the past is not reason enough now. I think he has proved, at least to my satisfaction, that he can adapt if he wants to.”
“He has, hasn’t he?” Kagome mused aloud; she was really surprised at how he was handling living in the future among all the things he most certainly found strange. She could even say frightening, not that he would admit it to anyone, not even himself.
“I suppose you didn’t think he could.”
“No,” she agreed, shaking her head, still bemused by the hanyou’s change. “He always seemed so stubborn and set on things… at first I thought he couldn’t change, but he has been doing it slowly since I met him the first time.”
“Darling, Inuyasha is highly adaptable. Actually, I have never encountered someone with his ability before… he does it unconsciously most of the times. Besides, if he wasn’t, you can be sure he would have died a long time ago. It is one of his ‘secret weapons’; so secret I don’t think even he is really aware of what he does. He is also very intelligent,” she said and paused, then added an afterthought, “I wonder what his IQ is… at least 140… hmm… remind me to test him once his reading skills are better.”
“Mama,” Kagome said with a giggle as her mother had turned to professional mode almost on a dime. “He is not one of your patients… or is he?”
“No, he’s not. But I sometimes wonder how much psychological damage he has suffered… it is something that worries me about your relationship with him, even if I know he is not a bad kid… he… keeps too much pent up inside. I worry about what would happen if he explodes.”
“He turns full youkai,” was Kagome’s answer.
“He turns full youkai. It is sort of a defense mechanism. When he is too overwhelmed in a fight and his life is threatened, his anger eats him and he transforms if Tetsusaiga is not by his side.” She shivered a bit remembering those times he had lost it. The young woman had really feared not just for their lives, but for his sanity too. “He looses his mind and can’t tell between friend or foe… He… he goes into a killing rage. And it tortures his soul when we manage to bring him back and he realizes what he has done. This is because of his mixed blood, and why he needs to have Tetsusaiga with him all the time; it seals his youkai blood.”
“Oh my God! Poor boy, it must feel like a curse to him.” Asami exclaimed, seeing the pained and worried expression on her daughter’s face.
“In a way it is, although he doesn’t talk about it… I have seen how much it hurts him to mindlessly destroy life… and I know he is afraid that one day he might kill us, even if he has mastered Tetsusaiga now.” After saying this, both women remained silent for a moment, each with their own worries, until Asami finally spoke.
“Kagome, I would like to treat him. I think I might be able to help Inuyasha cope with some of the things that plague his mind. Do you think he would accept?”
“I don’t know mama, but he has already talked to you about things I would not have dreamed he would tell anyone, so, he just might accept.” Kagome ventured thoughtfully. “You’ll have to explain what therapy is though.” Asami just nodded, mulling things up, she had already offered an ear to his troubles and a solution. He might just accept.
To Kagome, it was clear that she had managed to gain his trust faster than anyone would have thought possible. And she knew of her mother’s reputation for being able to handle some very difficult cases. There were a lot of troubled kids that owed her a chance at a better life. A few still came back to visit and show her their families, and how well they were doing after they finally left treatment. If anyone was able to help her hanyou it was her mother. Then, true to their female nature, Asami jumped back to the first topic they were discussing.
“They need to understand you have a stable relationship, and respect it.” Kagome looked at her not comprehending what she was talking about until she went on. “That is what good friends should do.”
“You’re right of course,” she agreed with a sigh. They were back to the girls. Good, she did not like to talk about Inuyasha turning demon. Besides, her mother was indeed right that she had to make the girls understand that she was capable of making her own decisions. “I don’t like it, but I plan on dealing with it once and for all the next time it comes up.” Kagome attacked her ice cream with her spoon. She made several lovely slices in it before deciding to take a bite. “In some ways,” she began saying thoughtfully, “I feel like my friends here are so immature, and that goes double when you add boys into the mix.”
“That is because you are an adult and they are still children.” Asami told her daughter as Kagome looked at her in surprise. It was how the young woman saw things herself, even if she sometimes fought with herself to remain just a simple Jr. High girl. She had never expected her mother to see it the same way. “Back in the past you are an adult Miko, carrying adult responsibilities.” Asami paused to make her point.
Ever since her daughter had started traveling to the past, she had investigated some of the customs of the time, to get a clearer idea of what she faced there and what was expected of Kagome. She wanted to be able to offer help and advice that would be of use in the Sengoku Jidai period. Adulthood was reached at a much younger age for both boys and girls. A girl Kagome’s age was usually already married and with at least one kid, if not more.
A human boy Inuyasha’s age… they had found out that his reincarnation would have turned 16 the day Kagome was attacked. And for all modern things they were going to take that date as his ‘official’ birthday, and what a way to spend one’s birthday. Inuyasha was old enough to search for a suitable wife and start a family, by human standards. He could have joined any samurai army, pledge service to any daimyo, or settle in any land that was free to farm. The hanyou was also the son of nobility, so he could have received lands to oversee by his parents. She was not really sure what his responsibilities would be by youkai standards though.
She was glad that Kagome was a passing for a Miko, a maiden dedicating her life to the spiritual path. It was the reason she guessed her daughter was still untouched back then. She was a pretty, knowledgeable, healthy, and strong young woman; and many a man would like to have an addition such as her to his household. Love was not as important back then when marriage was discussed. Also, the fact that she traveled with Inuyasha might give the impression that she was already taken, and she guessed few humans would be crazy enough to fight the young inu hanyou. In the back of her mind, there was also the worry that mating with him would hinder her daughter’s spiritual powers, Mikos were never to marry unless they renounced to being that. But it was also true that Kagome’s powers had nothing to do with training, and as far as they all could tell, she just had them.
“I suspect the fact you are a Miko is the only reason they have not tried to find a way to marry you off yet. And, with what you have told me, I’m sure Inuyasha would not have been considered for that.”
“No,” she responded with a sad sigh, “he would not, because of his demon blood… But some youkai seem to assume I’m already his mate, and now I know that is because of the pack.” Asami just nodded in agreement. “Although the people of the village seem to have begun to accept him… or at least get used to his presence,” she added as an after thought.
“As far as I’m concerned, all the time you have spent back there has matured you into an adult. You tend to revert a little when you get a chance to get out from under those responsibilities for a time, but not very often.”
“The girls usually have something to do with that.” The young woman admitted, chagrined
“I can see that,” Asami agreed with a slight smile. Peer pressure again. “But you being more mature; is part of the reason why I am not flipping out about all of the pack stuff and the engagement.” She said as her small smile turned mischievous; she was sure her daughter had been thinking that she was acting odd. Kagome returned the smile, finally understanding. “I won’t pretend I don’t have any reservations about it, I am you mother after all, and I love you. But since I see you as my adult child, I have to know when to step aside.”
“I didn’t know you thought about it that way mama. It is the way I see myself now…” she made a pause to eat some more of her sundae before it melted. “But… this mess is so bizarre… I didn’t expect you or anyone else to really see it like that. Who would believe I do the things I do back there anyway? I can barely believe them myself and I live them every day.”
“I think aside from the family, Lieutenant Watanabe probably would.” Asami began saying thoughtfully; Kagome’s situation was unique. “He has demon blood. On a side note, I think you should talk to Inuyasha about him later if he feels like it,” her daughter just nodded. “It was hard to believe for all of us too. If I had not seen him come through the door that time to get you, and actually touched his furry ears… I don’t think I would have believed it.”
“Yeah, it was quite a shock wasn’t it?” The young Miko said with a smile and a giggle. Her mother had latched to Inuyasha’s ears without so much as a ‘by your leave’, and then Sota had wanted to do the same. The poor hanyou had been quite annoyed and surprised.
“It was dear. I just want you to remember that I will accept you decisions because I know you’d always do your best to do the right thing. I might drop a hint or two there, but in the end it is still your decision.”
“Thanks for your trust mama,” Kagome was moved by her acceptance, and didn’t quite know what else to say so she went on. “I can see what you mean. When I am here, I tend to relax and act more like other kids my age, or at least try to,” Kagome said thoughtfully. “I miss being able to do that back there, all I wanted was to be just a normal Jr. High girl.”
“I can see that, and empathize with you honey. But I guess in this case we can’t change fate. I also think there’s a lot depending on all of you and the results of this quest.”
“No, I don’t think we can.” The young woman responded thoughtfully, “and it seems that way, but I really never dwell on that… I don’t think the others do either… it… frightens me, and I think it scares them too.” She then went on with something else that was bothering her and that wasn’t such a touchy subject. “I’m not sure how the chance of being a normal teen will have to change when we bring Shippou back and start acting as his parents… actually I’m a bit confused about that.”
“What do you mean? Maybe I can help you.”
“It’s… strange… I feel like there is some sort of subtle difference between being the pack leaders and assuming the responsibility of raising an orphaned member, and actually being his parents.”
“How so darling?” Now that was interesting, and she got an inkling about that, something to do with canine behavior. But wild life behavioral patterns were not her specialty, even if she found some interesting, good Ph.D. material, if she ever decided to go for it.
“I’m not really sure; it’s just a weird feeling. I might ask Inuyasha about it later, but I suspect he does not know either. Anyway, by our standards in this time, and even by demon standards in the past, we are too young to be his ‘parents’.”
“I think it might have something to do with duty, but I’m just guessing so I’m not really sure. I think… it is your responsibility to provide food, shelter and training. But being a parent is more than that, you don’t just provide for the needs of the body, anyone can do that, a parent will also nurture the heart, the mind and the soul, not that it always is so. I think Inuyasha might have been speaking of the pack providing for the physical needs.”
“I think I see what you mean… but… that seems a bit cold. Shippou is too warm and cute… you can’t help but love him. But… we allowed him get a bit wild and have not been disciplining him or teaching him the way we should. Little or not, he can be quite a handful to deal with as he usually does what he wants. How I wish we had known sooner that we were neglecting our responsibility towards him.”
“Well, you know now. There is nothing to do to change the past; you can only try to make things better now. My reservations about that deal more with what sort of parents will you make than anything else.”
“Hmmm… I really don’t know.” Kagome said thoughtfully. “Although sometimes I think Inuyasha needs a parent more than Shippou, judging by the way he acts,” She paused to finish her sundae. “Thanks for the advice you gave me earlier, I think that might help a lot. I’ll tell Inuyasha when we have time to talk, even if I still have my reservations that he’ll be any of help on the discipline department.”
“Well, he is aware he has that responsibility now, so things might change even if he doesn’t have a clue how to go about it. Anyway, parenting has a lot of pitfalls that can sneak up on you. None of us parents had really a clue how to raise a child, but most of us like to think we managed. You can always ask me for help if you need it and advice… Your aunt Rin called today…”
“Really?” Kagome interrupted delighted to hear from her; the were not really blood relations, but she loved them just as much and in a way they had become closer to them, than her father’s brothers. Her mother was an only child. “How is she? And Aiko? I suspect Nouru is still as stubborn as always… It’s been AGES since we last saw them.”
“I’ve seen Rin every once in a while, and they are all fine. I talked to her about this and she wanted me to offer you her help too.”
“You told her? Mama she might believe we’re going nuts!” Kagome exclaimed with a groan, although Rin had been her mother’s best friend since she could remember. “What would uncle Sessho think of us?”
“Actually Rin understands the situation better than you might think, certainly more than I thought.” There was an odd tone on her mother’s voice… like… she had mixed feelings about that.
“Aunt Rin knows about modern youkai?” Kagome was really surprised to hear about this, something told her she was not going to like the answer.
“Yes, she does.” Asami said a bit of anger and hurt reflecting on her voice. “Your aunt Rin actually knows a good deal about youkai, being that she is mated to one…”
“What? Uncle Sessho is a youkai? But… I never sensed him… is she youkai also?” She asked, a foreboding feeling making her shiver a bit.
“Yes, he is a youkai, but your aunt is human. She volunteered to baby-sit so that Shippou could play with Aiko. She explained some things on the phone, but she said she could not explain all, so I’m going to a sort of orientation meeting on Friday where I’m supposed to get filled in on the modern demon world.” Asami paused expecting Kagome to ask questions or start rambling, but her daughter was speechless, eyes wide and looking like she was having trouble digesting the news. “Rin expects it to last about all day, I’m afraid I showed her a bit of the family temper for not telling me about her family sooner.” The young Miko’s eyes were wide with surprise; she would never have suspected that her lovable aunt Rin knew about demons.
“What else was she hiding about her family?” She asked through narrowed eyes, in the pit of her stomach a growing suspicion began building. And the young Miko did not like the feeling at all.
“Your aunt Rin is actually over five hundred years old…”
“What?!” Kagome’s head began spinning.
‘It can’t be! The name and the age are too much of a coincidence. Oh dear Kami don’t make it her… that’ll mean HE is still around!’ A cold shiver ran down her spine, these were not good news. ‘Inuyasha is not going to like it! He might even try to fight him again.’ Her fear and worry showed through.
“What is wrong darling?” Asami asked worried.
“I have a bad feeling about this.” She said in a low hoarse voice. “But please go on, I have to hear it all before I make a conclusion.” Another shiver ran down her spine, but the fear was more for Inuyasha’s sake than her own.
“I’m afraid your feeling is partly right.” Her mother said with sigh, Kagome left the remaining sundae on the bench and shot to her feet to begin pacing nervously. “She is mated to the current Demon Lord of the West Lands…”
“Sesshomaru! He is here!” Kagome interrupted sounding very frightened. “Where’s Inuyasha? Does he know? Is he carrying Tetsusaiga?” She spoke in a hurry, her words tumbling upon themselves. “Oh Kami no!”
“Yes, he knows his brother is still around and in a powerful position. Inuyasha went to the park to see if he could track the killers. Don’t worry about him being in any threat from Sessho.”
“Sessho? Uncle Sessho? One of Papa’s best friends?” Kagome asked her mother stopping her frantic pacing to stare at her in utter disbelief. Her brain had not connected Sesshomaru with her aunt’s husband.
“Yes the same, your Papa knew he was a youkai, and both of them put a spell on our family to keep you and the rest of us from connecting them to the people you know in the past.” The young Miko was speechless, something did not fit in. “They have made certain not to come over ever since you were pulled down the well the first time. Rin told me that your powers have increased so much, that by now, you would easily see through Sessho’s concealing spell.
‘Oh Kami-sama, Kami-sama.’ Kagome repeated in her mind over and over again like a mantra. She heard her mother’s words, but she could not really assimilate them.
“I have to admit the spell worked, since even hearing Inuyasha mention his family name was Shirosenshi I did not make the connection until I read what was in the manila folder he gave me.” Her daughter just looked at her and she knew it was really hard to accept all this. “I think they were wrong to have kept the truth hidden, but it is over and done with now.” Kagome felt rather ill and hugged herself. Asami stood and gently moved her paralyzed, and shaking daughter back to the bench where they sat together, she held her in a loose comforting embrace until she calmed a bit.
“He’s been waiting to get Inuyasha; he’s always wanted to kill him because he is a hanyou and because their father gave him Tetsusaiga.” She said in a small voice.
“Sessho knows you and where we live Kagome, he even knows when Inuyasha came the first time, and he has not come back since then… It has been five hundred years or so for him, people change in time, and that too applies to demons. If he had wanted to kill Inuyasha and take the katana, he would have done that some time ago don’t you think?” She said, hoping logic would help calm her frightened daughter.
‘Uncle Sessho is actually Sesshomaru? I find that really hard to believe.’ The young woman thought, trying to follow the logic her mother had started, then she went on comparing the two personalities she knew. ‘Sesshomaru is a rather closed, cold, cruel and has tried to murder me as a side benefit to killing his brother. Uncle Sessho, on the other hand, is kind, gentle, laughs a lot when he is among friends or family, and has been nothing but good to us.’ Kagome’s mind whirled with all the memories of both personalities. ‘Some articles in the paper described him as a rather ruthless and cunning businessman, always knowing where to strike his victim… that fits with the Sesshomaru we know… but business or politics are the only places where he is ever considered that. Could five hundred years really change him that much? I’m not sure I can accept that.’
“You really believe he changed don’t you?” Asami nodded. “I suppose Rin is actually the same little girl that followed him around everywhere?”
“Yes, she is. Time and being mated to a human has done a lot to change him into a better person.” Asami explained and paused to let that comment sink in. “Rin says he very much regrets the way he treated his little brother and that he really did not understand much of anything until claiming Rin made him have to radically reexamine his beliefs.” Again, another pause; she wanted to make sure Kagome was listening and having time to assimilate what she was saying, it would make things easier. “He went through the same problems his own father had to defend his mate and his son. Sessho had to fight with all his might to defend Rin and his hanyou children from harm. It really made him empathize with Inuyasha’s situation and work to change the world.”
“Understanding Inuyasha and actually trying to change things? That sure does not sound like it’s him.” Kagome interrupted.
“With what you both have told me about him, I suppose it sounds rather farfetched. But both of them are in large part responsible for the peace we now enjoy and the integration of demons into human society.” Asami went on ignoring her daughter’s questions; they would be answered as she went on with the story. “Ever since the great demon war, three hundred years ago, things have been relatively peaceful and the youkai who refused to integrate or at least leave the humans alone were driven into what is now called the Untamed Lands. Officially, that is where Inuyasha has been living for the past ten years as far as modern youkai are concerned. It works as a cover story for both of you since they are practically stuck in the Feudal Era there.”
“There is a place where people still live like in the Sengoku Jidai? Where? I haven’t heard about anything of the sort.” She finally said after a long silence while she tried to assimilate what her mother told her. It was hard, a war among demons who wanted to live peacefully with humans? And they won?
‘I would have thought the majority of demons would have been against that kind of alliance, judging from what I’ve seen in the Sengoku Jidai. But I guess even demons get tired of fighting and not all of them are evil, no matter what some think.’
“It’s not actually a physical place as far as I understand… it’s sort of another dimension or something like that. But youkai and humans are in a perpetually unchanged era. I’m sure Rin will explain in more detail Friday.”
“I would really like to know how Sesshomaru and Rin got together.” She asked her mother instead, knowing the explanation about that place would have to wait; it had raised her curiosity. “As far as I have seen back then it doesn’t seem like it is ever going to happen. What with Sesshomaru proclaiming he hates humans? And why do you say that Inuyasha has been living there ten years instead of longer?”
“You remember Ryoutou and Itami?”
“Yes,” she responded sadly. They had been like family until they had died the year before. The couple didn’t have any kids and they had doted on both her and Sota.
“They had a son named Inuyasha who disappeared in the untamed lands when he was five.” Kagome looked surprised at that comment. “They were also the reincarnations of his real parents.”
‘By Kami! This is starting to be more confusing by the minute! But I can remember him now! We used to play together when we were kids, and… he looked almost exactly like Inuyasha looked when I saw his reflection on that pond long ago! But why didn’t I remember this before? Was it because of the spell?’
“I… I remember him now… but not before.”
“That is the spell’s doing. They made us forget about him and anything that might endanger your quest for the Shikon no Kakera.” Asami said slowly, she was still a bit pissed at having been kept in the dark. “Rin says the missing boy was Inuyasha’s reincarnation from the time he spent dead against the Go-Shimboku tree, but that the child ceased to exist in order for the well to work once he was no longer sealed. Since the times line up and Ryoutou and Itami were the reincarnations of his parents the last time around, Inuyasha has a real identity here and a good cover story for the intervening years. He can live here if he chooses after the jewel pieces are collected.”
“Oh my, I guess that makes sense. I’m going to have to think about that later, this is getting too complicated Mama.
“You tell me darling, it is really confusing. Itami and Ryoutou had specified that if Inuyasha was ever found he should be left in my custody too.”
“It’s like they knew…” Kagome mused thoughtfully before asking. “Does Inuyasha know about this?”
“Yes. He has been reading a letter Itami left him; they also left their diaries, so he could get to know them at least a bit. They also left a number of things for him to find, including his documents…”
“The folder he gave you yesterday?”
“Yes, that was it. Itami and Ryoutou left me some letters in there too as well as their wills… There was a letter from your Papa there too.” Her voice broke a little there. “He explains why he did not tell me and asks that we forgive him from not stopping all that happened, even if he knew about it. He said there was really not much choice. All this is very disconcerting. Especially for Inuyasha, I believe it has been very hard emotionally on him, on top of everything else.”
“I can see that, he has been acting odd since Friday, and after hearing this I can understand him. I guess things do pile on him too, even if he denies it. I… I apologized for sitting him after you left. That did not turn out the way I expected at all. We really talked for once, or more like he did most of the talking.”
“It’s good you finally listened to him. But it wasn’t just that misunderstanding that set you off wasn’t it?”
“No, I guess it has been building up since Friday for me too; I needed to vent and wound up taking it out on him after jumping to a completely wrong conclusion. I just… I just never thought he had ‘feelings’ for me. It was… always Kykyou before.”
“I think you were the only one that didn’t realize that he cared Kagome, and the same can apply to him. We could see clearly the way you both felt, I suspect your friends over there did too, but it was surprising to see that you two did not. But that’s not all of it, is it?”
“No, it really bothers me how close those men came… it made me relive the pain of Papa’s death.” She said softly, laying her head on her mother’s shoulder.
“I can see that darling.” Asami stroked her hair comfortingly.
“I’ve also been having nightmares about it, and it has made me realize how much I depend on our pack for protection.” She smiled a little even if she still felt disturbed by those horrible nightmares. Calling their group a pack sounded a bit strange to her ears, but that was what they had become and she had to get used to the term. “Add the nonsense with the girls and Inuyasha being here, acting like he belongs in this time, and I was ready to tear into someone.”
“I can understand that Kagome,” Asami told her and gave her a brief comforting hug.
“Thanks Mama, I really did not want to worry you…”
“Just remember I will always be here to listen. It’s not healthy to keep all of that tension bottled up.”
“Inuyasha has been trying to help, but getting him fully acclimated to this time is going to take work. I shouldn’t have done it, he rarely speaks what’s on his mind; and well, I was not far behind in that department either. Today was really the first time he opened up, so now I think we both know we need to do some serious work on relating to each other if we are going to make this work.”
“And you were surprised I see you as an adult.” Asami commented a proud smile on her face and messed her daughter’s hair affectionately. “You can come wake me up next time you have a nightmare and we can talk about it, so that you can get back to sleep. Inuyasha would probably like it if you would talk to him about it too. He seems to think very highly of the way you handle yourself around a fight.”
‘He does?’ She thought, and a voice from within her head responded.
‘He has tried to tell me as much in his own way’
‘Yeah, I was just not listening.’
“I am looking at a couple of different EMT training courses for you to take since you are going to be stuck here for a while.”
Asami went on telling her about what she found and how convenient it would be for her to learn to properly take care of not just Inuyasha after a fight. Because getting injured was something that could barely be avoided; and well, Inuyasha did get wounded a lot. Kagome argued that she was already doing badly in school to add more study, although she admitted that EMT training was more useful to her at the moment than learning geometry.
The young woman could see the advantages of that, not just for Inuyasha’s sake; Sango and Miroku had resulted hurt too on their battles, and she had always felt a bit helpless when they were far from Kaede Obaa-chan’s village. She had even ended hurt a couple of times, and she would surely appreciate some of the modern knowledge to treat her patients.
The young Miko was surprised that her mother was not overly worried about her falling grades, and her explanation was that she understood all she was going through at the Sengoku Jidai and that as important as it was to keep going to school, it was also very important; and probably a lot more; to make sure Naraku did not keep the Shikon no Tama and wreak havoc with the world. Asami didn’t tell her daughter, but Rin had been adamant that it should be their main concern.
“Mama, were there some courses on how to treat injuries on remote locations? Some that won’t deal with much modern stuff, as that is not available there?” She asked curious, something like that would really be helpful.
“I think there are, we can look at the catalog later. That is good thinking Kagome, and all I ask is that you do what you can at school. Actually attending class should help there. In the big picture, not passing and having to go to summer school or even repeating grade, isn’t that big a deal so long as you manage to live through your adventures to make it matter. Consider that being mated to a youkai or hanyou extends your life span beyond the human range.
“It does?” Kagome’s eyes were wide open in surprise. She would never have thought about it.
“Yes, you aunt Rin told me. Therefore, you’ll have plenty of time to get to high school. Besides, you will still be young when Sota dies of old age.”
“I hadn’t thought about it like that. I hadn’t really thought about how it would change things. I was worried about how Shippou’s presence would change my life, but… being mated with Inuyasha would be a bigger change. And I really don’t know anything about it, not even what sort of ceremony is involved.” Kagome said thoughtfully.
“I’m glad you are already sitting down, that was one of the things Rin, and I discussed today. There isn’t a ceremony per se, that is a human convention. Demons can smell a mated pair so they don’t need things like wedding rings. They often do have a party at the announcement to friends and family, but nothing like a wedding.” Kagome was eyeing her curiously, and started to turn red.
‘Oh dear, so I didn’t misunderstand what Inuyasha implied.’ The young woman wringed her hand a bit nervously; she also felt a bit excited at the prospect, as a few hentai thoughts regarding Inuyasha had crossed her mind. And he had such a great body! She was lucky… she would finally find out if his ass was as firm as it looked. Then she blushed, trying to get her mind out of the gutter.
“To blend with humans they often borrow from our conventions, but they don’t mean quite the same thing to them.” Her mother went on oblivious to the thoughts on her daughter’s head. “Casual sex is not very common for them, but that seems to be dependent on the species. Rin said it was a blood bond formed during intercourse that binds the pair for life.”
‘Intercourse? She means the mating is actually sex? Oh Kami! I have to… to…’ Her mind made a deep plunge to the gutter again. She suddenly felt very hot and fanned herself with a hand. ‘Make love to Inuyasha.’
“I suspect she will want to compare notes later, since you will be sisters in law and you will be an aunt twelve times over.” Asami went on not seeing the young woman’s antics. Kagome flushed a bit before responding.
“Oh my! No wonder Inuyasha didn’t say much about it! I am sure Rin and I are going to have a number of long talks, especially since she mated with Sesshomaru. How did that come about?” She wanted to change the subject since she needed to get used to what mating meant.
“Rin had always slept with him when she was a child using his tail as a blanket and his chest as a pillow. He had never really thought about it since puppies normally sleep with others.”
“Puppies?” Kagome interrupted then answered her own question. “Rin did look a bit like a cute puppy then. And it does sound logical that Sesshomaru would consider her a pup. She is really about six or perhaps seven years old.”
“Well, she reached puberty and he never knew what hit him.” Now that made Kagome chuckle after Inuyasha’s explanation about what being in heat did to him, she could imagine it was worst to a full youkai. She didn’t know that Inuyasha’s sense of smell was exceptional even for a full inu youkai, since he did not know that either.
“Wow! That must have really been a shock for the ice cold Sesshomaru.” Asami grinned; she and Rin had had a few laughs at it on the phone too.
“At fourteen, she hit her first heat and had a rather arousing dream while sleeping against him. He was so affected by it, it woke him up, and he had to leave to keep from forcing himself on her then and there. Unfortunately for him, losing her favorite mattress and blanket made her cold and woke her up, so she went looking for him. She found him waiting for his clothing to try, naked as the day he was born and trying to ride out the effect she had had on him.” Now that made both laugh.
“Oh I can almost imagine that scene; the great Sesshomaru had an accident.” Kagome giggled, it must have been a shock for the icy youkai.
“Her presence there completely cracked his self-control since he already loved her very dearly, even if he couldn’t admit it to himself, and she is human after all. Arousal is a positive feedback loop for most youkai from what Rin explained. It doesn’t end until both parties are sated or unless they both have enough willpower to back down.”
Kagome mouthed an ‘Oh’ of surprise and blushed all the way to the root of her hair, imagining Inuyasha and her in that situation. She forced back her hentai mind to keep listening to the story, as it was quite amusing. She had trouble imagining the Sesshomaru of the past being passionate, but the images she was getting were starting to become hilarious.
“So, Sessho was done in by his own nose. Rin’s arousal sparked his, and the scent of him had a pheromone or aphrodisiac-like effect on her. She claims they went at it for about three days straight with very few breaks and interruptions. It left her pregnant with Keishi.” Kagome could not help it, she laughed until tears rolled down her face. That must have been wild, no, she definitely could not picture neither of the faces she had seen so far of Sesshomaru as passionate.
“Dear Kami, now I know who to ask to keep him in line. It’s a shame they didn’t have decent birth control methods back then. Pregnant at fourteen, makes me glad I am from this century. That certainly explains why Inuyasha has been sleeping in a tree instead of inside.” Her respect for him grew; he had been protecting her from himself, and she had taken it all wrong!
“Yes it does, doesn’t it? I hadn’t thought the instinct was that strong or that it affected both parties when he asked to sleep outside. I suspect he doesn’t know about that. All things considered, no one who knows what’s really going on expects you two to last a month unmated since you have permission.” Kagome turned a bright shade of burgundy wine as she blushed all the way up to the roots of her hair. “You don’t have to be embarrassed about it. It is not like you are going to be doing it behind my back or without my permission.”
“It’s just that… it is rather an odd topic to talk about with one’s mother. The girls do talk about it, but I really just listen.”
“Well I’d much rather prefer to be the one you talk about it with, so I can do my best to explain and answer your doubts; sometimes those talks among girls confuse more than help.”
“I can see what you mean Mama, and I’m really glad we can talk about this, some of my friends don’t feel free to speak with their parents.”
“That is sadly one of the most frequent cases I see when I counsel teens. Now back to what we were talking about, I want you to marry in the human tradition once you mate and then we can move your things into his room since it has the bigger bed.” That got her a little nervous laugh and another blush. “Trust me;” Asami said mischievously, “you ARE going to want the bigger bed.”
‘Oh dear, oh dear, Kagome get a grip of yourself girl.’ She thought, but the image of a towel clad Inuyasha kept popping into her mind. ‘Come on, get those hentai thoughts under control!’ Suddenly she felt like the night was getting very hot again, so she starting fanning herself again. The blush probably reached all the way to her feet. She could also hear her mother laughing softly.
“You look almost as red in the face as Inuyasha did when I gave him the ‘Sex for Dummies’ book and he leafed through it. I’m surprised he didn’t pass out from it.”
Now those words made Kagome gape, she almost fell off the bench from the impression and then she burst out laughing until tears came to her eyes; imagining the poor hanyou’s face when he saw the book. He always refused to fall into Miroku’s lecherous conversations and looked quite flustered when the monk made lewd comments. He was probably quite shocked, that her mother of anyone else in the world was the one to give him something ‘ecchi’ like that.
“Oh Kami!” She gasped out of breath. “Oh Kami! I can just picture his face when you gave him that.”
“Yes, that was one funny sight; he was probably red for more than an hour.” Asami told her still laughing softly.
“But… why did you give it to him in the first place?”
“Well after talking with him yesterday, I think he knows the facts of life because he has seen them in nature. Probably even spied a few couples in the woods, but I don’t think he really knows what a loving and mutually satisfying sexual relation entails.” Kagome was back to blushing, “but I think you do, having some knowledge about it from the stuff you sometimes read.”
“I know you have been reading some stories that are NC-17…”
“It’s ok Kagome, you don’t have to explain. I understand you might be curious about sex; it’s only natural. I was planning on talking to you about it, but well, there wasn’t the time. And now that knowledge might turn helpful.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well you’re both inexperienced, and that could make your first time, both disappointing and painful. Rin tells me male dog demons and hanyous tend to run a bit larger than the human range. So it is actually more important than I originally thought. Hopefully that little book will make things more pleasant for you and him by introducing Inuyasha to concepts like foreplay and oral sex.” Kagome was still blushing.
“I don’t think he would actually hurt me Mama,” the young woman said softly. “Inuyasha cares a lot about you; but he could get carried away by his instincts. And that is not just a demon thing; human males have instincts too and some get carried away. Rin expects that you will be a bit sore for a while until your body adjusts to it. He first time was rather painful because of their relative sizes so she warns potential daughters in law about it now.”
“Mama it still feels strange to me to be discussing this stuff so openly with you. Most of my friends would discuss it amongst themselves, but always behind their parents’ backs. None of them would even consider discussing their sex lives, or lack there of, with their parents”
“Don’t worry about it, remember you are an adult in my eyes and I want to know enough to be able to help you both. Part of that is helping you keep from getting pregnant, and no woman wishes another a bad first time. I also don’t want to walk in on you two either. I think you would both die of embarrassment and nothing spoils the mood like that.”
“Gah, I think we can make sure to lock the door. I don’t want to get pregnant either, but I’m not sure how best to prevent it.”
“I got you a prescription for some birth control pills. You can start them after your next period. They only work if you take them regularly, that was how you happened…”
Asami went on telling Kagome how inconstant she was with her birth control pills after marrying Yushiro; they had not really planed on having kids so soon but… well, they had been very happy that she was born. He already had started the company with both Sessho and Ryoutou as partners and was doing well, and she had just finished her masters degree, so she could dedicate all of her time to her. They talked a bit longer about small details like re-decorating the guest room to make it more to her liking, and moving her clothes there once they mated, before going back into the house.
The night surrounded the lone figure that walked along the deserted streets of downtown Tokyo. Her last costumer had been a real bastard, demanding her services but in the end refusing to pay and hitting her for daring to demand what was rightfully hers. Did she not comply with all his sick little games? The ugly jerk just wanted a girl that looked underage to please him, like some tawdry little sex slave. In the end she managed to steal his wallet while he slept, and stormed out of the cheap hotel room they shared.
“Fucking bastard!” She muttered. “Let’s see who laughs last.” The young woman walked faster. It was not late, but the streets were unusually deserted. A creepy feeling began taking hold and Michiko most of the times paid attention to them. “I better hurry; perhaps I can catch another costumer.” She kept talking to herself trying to push away the feelings of dread.
A red four door compact sedan, like the thousands produced in Japan, moved slowly beside her. Michiko ignored it for a few paces and observed it through the corner of her eyes. There were two men inside, one in the front driving, which the young hooker could see clearly. He was not a prizewinner on the looks, but he was not scary looking. The features from the one that sat in the back were concealed by the shadows.
“Hello darling!” The one on the wheel drawled. “What’s your name?” He asked, still driving as she had not stopped walking. For a moment she was annoyed; were these guys just trying to get a freebie? That sounded too much like a pick up line. But that was not going to happen; she was a working girl after all, and had to earn a living. One bad costumer a night was enough. Her clothing should have been obvious enough as to what her profession was, anyway, she responded.
“Michiko, what’s yours hon’?”
“I’m Bunko and he’s Takashiro.” The driver said pointing to the back of the car where the other man sat. “How about earning some extra yen?”
“Now you’re talking,” she said with a well-studied sensual smile. “What do I have to do?” Believing her feeling of dread was because she walked alone, the hooker decided to accept the company. After all, she needed the yen badly.
“Hmmm… Nothing much, just please my buddy and me.”
“Ok hon, but you have to pay in advance.” She said, remembering her last costumer; she did not want to repeat that. The man named Bunko grinned.
“It’s a deal then, hop in.” He stopped the car only long enough for her to climb into the back seat.
After receiving her payment, she started doing her job with the Takashiro guy. Nothing fancy, just fuck him on the backseat; although for the amount she was getting paid she did work a bit on turning him on. There was not much space to really move in the backseat, but well, they were the ones paying, so who was she to complain? As soon as the Takashiro guy started to get exited, things began to turn nasty.
The guy hit her, and started calling her names. Michiko protested, saying she wanted to call the deal off. There were a lot of things she would do for a client, but getting beaten was not one of them. Her body needed to look good for her to make some money with it. The hooker tried to open the door on her side, only to discover the child safety lock was on. The Takashiro guy ripped her clothes off, ignoring her screams and struggles. He had his way with her brutally beating her, and kept on doing it until the poor woman was unconscious.
Michiko recovered consciousness several times during the night, but it would have been kinder for her to never wake up. The men abused her body and mind brutally until she became unconscious, only to be revived and to have her torture start all over again. They raped and sodomized her, repeatedly damaging the tender tissues irreparably, ripping the perineum and cutting the labia major and minor to shreds. It lasted for what seemed like long hours; or perhaps even an eternity. She pleaded, begged, and cried to be left alone, but the only thing the monsters seemed to really pay attention to, were her screams of pain. Before her eyes swelled shut, she could see their pleased smiles whenever she let out a deafening keen of pain.
They never gave her a respite from pain, whenever she thought she could not bear it any longer, that it could not get any worse, or she could no longer scream; those two proved her wrong, bringing the pain to a new level. It was after one such session of torture that a loud commotion could be heard in the background. She was barely aware of curses being uttered, things being thrown and broken in anger. A door slammed, only to be slammed again several heartbeats later, accompanied by more cursing. Her captors argued in hushed angry tones. One of them, Michiko could no longer see, plunged something sharp in her lower belly very slowly. Pain even worse than what she had experienced so far racked her body, as slowly the sharp object made its way to her heart. It tore a last agonizing scream, which was silenced by a brutal kiss, before death finally claimed the young hooker.
Even though he was sleeping outside at the Go-Shimboku Inuyasha was the first to get to her room, claws ready to attack. Kagome had left her window slightly open and as he jumped inside he found her sitting on her bed crying hysterically and clutching her lower belly. His eyes tore through the room just as his nose searched for any disturbing scents. But there was nothing strange, only her fear and tears. He could also tell she was not hurt; carefully he approached the bed, sat on the side and called her softly.
“Kagome?” The young woman’s immediate reaction was to throw her arms around his neck and sob uncontrollably into his chest. Just then, the rest of the family arrived, all bleary eyed.
Inuyasha turned to look at them and Asami signaled for him to hug Kagome back. He did, a bit shy at having her whole family witness it, and the young hanyou wasn’t sure if Higurashi-sama had spoken to them about the mating yet. He could see the old man frown, but Jii-chan did not utter a word. The young woman responded by burying her face in the crook of his neck. Someone turned the lights on, making everybody blink.
“It was just a nightmare.” Asami told Jii-chan and Sota after taking look at the situation. “You can go back to sleep.”
“But… but…” The young boy stammered eyes wide with fear.
“It’s Ok Sota, don’t worry.” His mother told him in a soothing voice, messing his unruly hair. “Your sister only had a very bad dream.”
“But what if there was something…” The young kid began to protest again, as his eyes darted every which way scanning the room, still afraid.
“Look, Inuyasha is here.” She pointed at the dog-demon sitting on the bed with a sobbing girl in his arms. “If there was something bad around, don’t you think he’d be going after it?” Asami reasoned with her youngest.
“Yes… you’re right Mama. Inuyasha nii-chan is the strongest guy I know.” Admiration colored the young child’s voice; the inu hanyou was his hero. “He’ll keep us safe” Sota said, brightening as he remembered his encounter with the Nou mask. “He is awesome!” Inuyasha could not help but blush, unused to being the object of such admiration. Sota then went back to his room confident that the hanyou would protect them.
“You too Jii-chan, go back to sleep.”
“I’ll place some wards just in case.” He said, going back to his room for his papers. Before leaving he cast Inuyasha a disapproving look; he still had his doubts about having the demon at home. Although to his credit, the youkai was behaving distantly polite.
Asami sighed and shook her head, as she watched him walk to his room. His magic did not work, but at least he felt useful doing it. Jii-chan was back and stuck a few wards on her door as he chanted some weird things before going to his bedroom. The older Higurashi’s attention returned to her daughter, she was still shivering uncontrollably in the young man’s arms and was now fully curled on his lap. Kagome muttered something but the she did not understand what it was.
“She is saying ‘They hurt and killed her’ and ‘they are monsters’ over and over.” The hanyou explained to her. He still felt awkward holding Kagome so close when other people were in the room, but he guessed the sensation would change the more he got used to being mates. The older woman drew the chair from Kagome’s desk closer to the bed.
“Kagome darling, it was just a nightmare. Everything is fine now, look you’re in your room and we are here. You’re safe.” She knew about her nightmares, but this one was the first one that actually managed to scare her enough to wake the whole family. Speaking about them should at least have eased her mind, but she knew the knowledge that two serial killers were after her was enough to unnerve anyone no matter how mature they were and used to danger they were.
“It was not a nightmare Mama.” Kagome managed to say between sobs, her grip on Inuyasha still desperate. “They killed again, it was so horrible.” She shuddered and started crying again. Inuyasha gently rubbed her back trying to comfort her. He also started purring loudly, knowing the sound had helped to calm her before.
“Who killed again?” The hanyou asked softly.
“The park killers.” Both Inuyasha and Asami exchanged worried looks over her head.
“I think that some tea would be in order. Come let’s go down to the kitchen.” Asami suggested not wanting either Jii-chan or Sota hearing about it. Her youngest would really get frightened and the old man’s health was already suffering for his concern over his granddaughter.
Asami stood up and went to the kitchen followed by Kagome and Inuyasha, who carried the girl down the stairs not trusting her to walk by herself. By time the tea was ready, the young woman had calmed enough to be able to talk. She began telling them that it was not the first one, but the others had been more like memories, like seeing and hearing things through some sort of unfocused camera, with badly taped sound that she really could not make out. They were terrible, but with no actual feeling, unlike the one she had that night. The images were sharper the sounds clearer and more understandable, and she actually felt the agony of the girl and the pleasure of one of the killers. It had been like being inside of him and her at the same time.
Slowly, as she sipped her tea, Kagome described in detail each killing, to the point of telling what the girls had been wearing and how old they were. On the one she had that night, the young Miko was able to tell a few more details. So far, she had five nightmares with five different girls, the second one of them a very young and pretty crane youkai. Because of that, she had not given the dreams much importance, until she met the neko policeman. Before seeing him, she had not believed there were youkai in the present. Inuyasha started at the mention of the female youkai, and looked very pensive, the young woman noticed it.
“What is it Inuyasha?” Kagome asked and saw him look like he was thinking hard, he shook his head. Not wanting for a moment to worry or scare her anymore than she was. “Don’t keep things from me; I rather know what’s going on, we made a deal remember?”
“I just don’t want you worried…” He said softly with a resigned sigh.
‘It’s true, I did promise to tell her what’s on my mind… I just… I just think this might be too much, and I’m not sure about it yet.’ The young hanyou thought worriedly, then looking at her he spoke.
“But I guess you both have a right to know.”
“She does Inuyasha, and as you said I’d like to know too.” Asami looked at him, guessing that he had figured something out or knew about what was happening to Kagome.
“The neko police man told me there have been 18 victims…” He saw them gasp and their eyes reflect the horror they felt at such a large number of poor murdered girls. “Not all were girls; there are the two young men from Friday too. And… well… I’ve read three of those ‘file’ thingies they make of the killings. I have not gone far, but the second ‘victim’ was a young crane youkai.” Both Asami and Kagome gasped shocked, but remained quiet to let him continue. “Actually the neko told me there were two youkai and one a hanyou.”
“It… it was not a nightmare!” Kagome exclaimed shocked starting to panic, and Asami moved closer to hug her, offering comfort.
“I… don’t think it was,” he said slowly. “What you told us about the first three girls of your nightmare matches what I have read.” He agreed with her and could see Kagome shivering, while her mother tried in vain to offer some reassurance. In his eyes they both needed it badly, so he muttered softly but loud enough for them to hear it. “I’ll protect you Kagome; they won’t get near you again.”
“But… why is this happening to her?” Asami asked perplexed, and feeling relieved. She knew he would do her best to keep her daughter safe, Kagome relaxed a bit at his words too. But how could she be able to see that kind of thing?
“I don’t know.” Inuyasha responded, looking worried. “Maybe it is because of her Miko powers. Perhaps Kaede-baba or Miroku would know, I think I’ll go see them tomorrow.”
“Sounds like a good idea.” The young Miko managed to say, either of them could have some answer for that. But the prospect of ‘seeing’ every time they killed a young woman terrified Kagome. She was not sure she could deal with it. In her time wandering around the Sengoku Jidai she had not encountered such cruelty among many youkai, much less humans.
“Do you think we should inform the cops about this new victim?” Asami asked; the youths were silent for several moments deep in thought.
“No, I don’t think they would believe it Mama.” Kagome said with a sigh. Asami had to agree with that, Detective Nomura had made it clear he did not believe in psychic stuff. “Detective Nomura would probably think I’m going insane or maybe just cracking under stress.”
“I think the neko might believe it, Higurashi-san. My half-brother put him up to date on our comings and goings, except that he, thankfully, did not mention the jewel… still, it bothers me more than a little that he is around, but there are more important things than wondering what my asshole of a brother is really up to.” Inuyasha told the women, looking Asami in the eye.
“Inuyasha watch your language before my mother!” Kagome scolded him lightly, since she was really surprised that he was willing to put Sesshomaru in the back of his mind for a while. The young Miko had to agree to herself that even if she had seen the changes, she wasn’t really sure about who the Demon Lord of the Western land had become.
“Feh! Believe me wench, I am! I can sure think of a lot of worse things to call the bastard.”
“Feh! Watanabe asked for us to let him aid us in any way we thought could help.” He said changing the subject not really wanting to have a fight. “I think if Kaede-baba or Miroku can’t find a solution to this, then he might have an idea or two.” Inuyasha said, thinking aloud.
“It’s possible; do you think they have used Mikos to help with cases before in the past?” Asami asked.
“I don’t know, possibly… I might try to get something out of him without seeming to obvious about it.” Inuyasha replied and Kagome snorted in disbelief. “What?” He snapped at her.
“You and subtlety don’t go along in the same paragraph, much less the same sentence.” The young woman stated pointing a finger to his chest.
“Feh! That is what you think.” He retorted offended, he stole a glance at his future mother in law and noticed the slightly amused look in her face. “At the very least, we can go find the body and there might be enough ‘evidence’ there to get a good lead and track them to wherever they hide.” Kagome nodded. Inuyasha could smell her distress calming down as they made plans for how to deal with this new development. He guessed that his mate felt better if she felt more in control of what was happening.
“These guys are a couple of psychos,” she shuddered. “The sooner we can stop them the better.”
“I quite agree,” Asami said as she placed her teacup in the sink “We should get back to bed and try to grab some sleep.” She told the teens, but a look at her daughter’s face convinced her that was probably not something she was looking forward to.
“I don’t know if I am going to be able to get back to sleep now.”
“Perhaps you two can just stay up and talk or watch a movie.” She suggested, they might get to talk a bit more about the change getting married would create in their lives or plan more on how to deal with the nightmares. “I need to get some rest so that I’ll be coherent for my appointments in the morning, so I am going to head to bed. If you want you can stay home and sleep tomorrow.”
“Thanks Mama, but I don’t think I will stay. Being there keeps my mind from thinking too much… Would you stay with me Inuyasha?” Kagome asked, remembering her mother’s suggestion that she talk to him about the nightmares earlier that evening.
“Aa, I don’t think I can sleep either.” Inuyasha was quite frankly worried and knew that would keep him up even if Kagome did not want company.
Asami was seriously disturbed by the revelation that her daughter’s nightmares were not just simple stress reactions. Living through the deaths of others was certainly traumatic, and doing so in the way she had described was even worse. She needed to think about how to help Kagome deal with them, but until she could come up with an answer of some sort, her daughter’s fiancé would certainly take care of her.
After her mother went to sleep, Kagome led Inuyasha to the TV room. The night had become chilly, so she got a blanket from his bed while he turned it on and surfed through the channels for something at least half-decent to watch. At that God forsaken hour, most of what he found was those sales thingies, in the end he settled for whatever was on the Discovery Channel. He only wanted the noise and images to keep his thoughts from running amok or getting too deep. He was downright worried by the new development, those nightmares boded nothing good.
Kagome sat on the couch under the blanket while she waited for him to decide what he wanted to watch. At the moment the young woman did not care what it was as long as it kept her from falling asleep and the prospect of another nightmare. She also wondered if he would sit beside her; their relationship was too new for her to know what to expect from the young inu-hanyou. A small smile came to her lips when he sat beside her, she covered the both of them with the blanket and hesitantly snuggled up to him, and when Inuyasha did not protest and shyly passed an arm behind her shoulders to draw her closer, she got more comfortable.
As he held her close, Inuyasha buried his nose in her hair, savoring her sweet scent, made even better by the tinges of her ‘heat’. He sought the calming and peaceful effect she always seemed to have, but this time it was not there. His mind was going round and round, refusing to calm down. Those fucking humans managed to hurt her again and there had been nothing he could do to stop them. How was he going to protect her from nightmares or visions? He had promised both of them that he would. Those things were not something he could beat up, but stuff in her mind. He clenched his jaw in frustration and impotence, as he let out a low growl.
Kagome could feel how tense he was, and even see it by the tight set of his jaw and the way his eyes stared at some point beyond the TV. Her hanyou was definitely not watching it. Wanting to relax him, she softly stroked his cheek with a hand before moving it to the top of his head in search of the nearest ear. It was plain luck that she found out just a few days before he liked his ears petted and it helped him to relax.
She began to rub the base of his ear, and he tilted his head to allow her better access to it, but he did not start purring immediately like he had done whenever she lavished attention to them. Instead she had to work until his jaw unclenched a bit. Then the comforting sound and vibration appeared very softly, and it pleased her to know that he was beginning to loosen up. Maybe he would be willing to tell her what was on his mind.
“Inuyasha, what’s bothering you?” Her voice was soft, but she felt him tense anyway.
“Nothing wench, I’m…” He did not finish the sentence, the answer had been abrupt and out of the habit of keeping things to himself.
‘I… I made a deal with Kagome today… to tell her what bothered me in exchange for her to do the same… Damn! It was easier said than done…’
“Everything,” he finally said into her hair with a sigh as he held her closer, relishing the feel of the young woman against him. Kagome could not hide a small smile as she saw he was really trying to open up enough to let her know what was troubling him. The young woman remained quiet to let him speak. “How are we going to complete the Shikon no Tama, get rid of that fucking Naraku, deal with my asshole of a half brother, and catch a couple of really demented and sick human serial killers?”
“I… I don’t know,” she told him realizing how much the young man had to worry about. There were just too many things to solve that older men would go crazy trying to. And he was expected to deal with them when he was no older than she was. “All we can do is our best to solve these things. At times it seems like it’s too much for us… but lately I’ve been having the feeling that Kami-sama would not put us though these situations if he did not think we could handle them.”
“Yeah, I suppose you’re right,” Inuyasha agreed after thinking her words through, nuzzling her hair. “This is a fucking mess… the only thing I wanted was to keep you safe here too.” She gave him a soft kiss on the cheek for that admission.
“I know… I guess the fact that we travel through time makes it more complicated.”
“Kojiro said Sesshomaru told him something of the sort.”
“Kojiro?” She asked, surprised not recognizing the name.
“The neko hanyou. He asked me not to call him neko or Nomura-jiji would start suspecting something is going on.”
“Nomura-jiji?” Kagome asked chuckling. The detective was not old, not old at all, and very handsome. She wondered why Inuyasha nicknamed him that, but then he was known for calling people names no matter who they were.
“He won’t stop calling me kid.” He explained slightly annoyed.
“But you are a kid…” Kagome started saying.
“I’m no goat! I’m an inu youkai!” he interrupted indignantly.
“Goat?” For a moment, she was completely confused and then it dawned on her. He had not spent much time around humans when he was younger and the times he heard someone address him as kid were probably not good. It was just like her and not understanding that for him most females were bitches since he was a dog demon. She laughed softly and even a bit more at his puzzled expression. “You have that wrong Inuyasha.”
“I don’t…” He started to protest, but her fingers on his lips silenced him.
“Yes you do, a kid is a human youngster just as it also is the young of a goat. For us it is not an insult. Kid is the normal way to refer to one who is around our age. I’m a kid too.”
“Oh!” Inuyasha exclaimed a bit surprised, he had always thought that was some kind of insult. Kagome’s hand had moved to his neck and shoulder to massage them in attempt to ease some of the tension.
“You have been around me since this started so I tend to forget you didn’t hang around human or demons that much. Nomura-san was not being offensive. He was calling you the way he would call any other guy your age.” Inuyasha tried to shrug as he adjusted his position to give her better access to the sore spots. “Here let me s…” she corrected herself just in time, “move behind you. Your shoulders and neck feel very tense.”
“They are,” he agreed as he moved over a seat while she took his place.
“It’ll be better if you take off your haori, so there’s less fabric in the way of my hands.” He complied, leaving his inner shirt in its place.
Kagome gathered his silvery mane and braided it loosely, then tossed it over his shoulder where it would be out of the way. Inuyasha grabbed it and examined her handy work. It certainly seemed like an interesting way to keep his hair from getting in places where he did not want it. He would probably try doing something like that the next time he went to a hot spring. While he had been looking at his braided hair, she had placed a leg on either side of him and started rubbing his neck.
“You know? I don’t think it’s such a good idea to get you involved in the park killer case.” She commented as she kept rubbing his neck.
“Why not? Do you think I could sit back and watch this ‘police’ protect you? That’s my… Hmmm…” he did not finish saying as she hit a particularly sore spot on his neck. Her fingers felt so good. Kagome smiled softly at his response to her attentions, especially when his purr became louder.
“No, it’s just that I don’t want you to get hurt…”
“Then I won’t get hurt,” he interrupted her. “You know it takes a lot to actually harm me.”
Her hands felt so good as she rubbed his neck, but it felt even better as she started to move down to his shoulders. Kagome pushed his shirt lightly out of the way. Under the work of her small hands, he could feel how his body slowly started to relax; in response to the sensations, the pitch of his purr went a bit lower.
“You already have.” The young woman pointed out without stopping.
“It was nothing, Kagome. Besides, what they want me to do is boring. I have to sit behind this table and read all those ‘files’ they have, sniff out the stuff they took from the bodies and other places, and I also went and sniffed the places where they found the girls. Nomura-jiji took me to three today, but there was not much I could do there. His damn people had walked all over the places and messed the trails pretty bad.”
“Ok, so it’s not dangerous, but what about the Shikon no Tama or the well? You might slip up.”
“Ok, so I might,” the young hanyou admitted grudgingly, “but I am being careful of not mentioning the Shikon no Tama.” He was silent for a moment, enjoying her attentions, while he debated about whether or not to tell her some of his suspicions. They had been stuck in the back of his mind since he came back from the park and demanded some attention. “You know? I get the feeling I’m supposed to be here.”
“You do? How? Or what would be the purpose of you being here?” Kagome asked surprised, it sounded a bit farfetched.
“I’m not really sure yet… but… have you noticed that things sort of… make it easier for me to be here?” He told her thoughtfully, and then went on. “The scrolls Ofukuro’s and Oyaji’s reincarnations left for me… the fact that my own disappeared…” he let his voice trail off. “That there is actually a way for me to exist in this time…”
Kagome was enjoying finally getting him to speak his mind and have a serious conversation without a fight. He had a very valid point with his observations that things seemed to have been ‘arranged’ so he could stay in her time; she probably needed to think more about it, after she got all of the info on those scrolls.
The young woman was pleased that Inuyasha trusted her enough to be in such a vulnerable position while he allowed her to work on relaxing him. She was also actually touching him, like she had wanted to do for so long, brushing her lips against the back of his neck; the question that had popped into her mind about how sensitive his skin was got answered. He shivered and the skin quivered a bit, just like Buyo’s did when something brushed against its fur.
“Do you have any idea what I’m supposed to know to keep us out of trouble?” The young woman asked when he remained quiet for few moments. Her hands had started to knead the muscles between his shoulder blades.
“I think I’m going to have another talk with Kojiro. Not sure when it’ll be though.”
“And about us?”
“Your Ofukuro said she’d fill you in on everything before I left. She wanted to warn me in case I overheard you talking, I really… hmmm… that feels good… go lower.”
Kagome kissed him again between the shoulder blades and got the same response; she pushed his shoulders forward with one hand and kept him from getting up with the other on his side. Rolling her thumbs and using her palms and knuckles, she went ahead and worked the muscles all the way down to the waistline of his hakama. Inuyasha could not have stopped purring or moved aside if he had wanted to.
‘Oh Kami! This is sooo good, I never thought…’ The feel of his mate’s thumbs slipping into his pants startled him as she proceeded to work her way down to his lower back.
“Wha… what are you doing wench?” He asked her quietly.
She could not possibly know how much he craved her touch all over his skin. It was a sensation he had never experienced before, the need to be touched, but it felt so good and right. Still, the location of her hands was making him nervous; they had brought a rather unexpected reaction. Kagome was in heat, and even if it was starting to fade, she could unintentionally push him too far.
“Trying to make up for this afternoon by making you feel better… Do you want me to stop?” Her touch was not sexual, or at least she thought so, but she knew he had never allowed anyone to do more than hug him, so getting a back massage might make him start feeling a little skittish. She would respect that, not wanting to put pressure on the young man, but she wanted to cuddle and take comfort in her fiancé, her mate. They had not had a chance to celebrate earlier, so perhaps they could now.
“No, you surprised me that was all.” He said gruffly, his ears twitching. She noticed his ears twitching on their own accord and decided to work her way back up to them. His purring was very soothing and comforting to her frazzled nerves. Her efforts to make him feel better were making her feel better too, pushing the fear and anxiety of the nightmare away.
A/N: WARNING!!!! The next chapter is a lemon, if you don’t like or can’t read it please wait until chapter 20, it is almost done and just needs some final adjustments, it won’t take long after the next chapter is up.
After reading some Rurouni Kenshin fics where they embed the lemon in a lower rating story, but with suitable warnings I decided this would work for Present Time. So it won’t be posted as a side story, but will be clearly marked so you can skip it if you like.
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