InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Chronicles ❯ Murphy's Law ( Chapter 89 )

[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]

~~Chapter 89~~
~Murphy's Law~
 
“You look beautiful.”
 
Kagome pressed a hand against her belly as butterflies took over. Smiling nervously at Sango, she couldn't repress the slight groan at the number of guests that were filing into the shrine courtyard. “Thanks, Sango . . . I thought Mama said she was only inviting a few hundred people.”
 
Leaning over her shoulder, Sango gasped and stepped back. “Kagome . . . . Most of those people . . . are they youkai?”
 
Narrowing her gaze as she stared at the courtyard, Kagome gasped, too, and stifled a groan. “They are,” she agreed, sensing their youki even from her old bedroom window. “But . . . how?” Spotting one of the few humans mingling with the youkai, Kagome did groan. “Houjou? Mama invited Houjou?” Turning her wary eyes on her friend, Kagome shook her head. “This can't be a good omen.”
 
“Let me see you!” Mrs. Higurashi exclaimed softly as she stepped into the bedroom. Dressed in a white silk kimono trimmed and embroidered with crimson silk thread, Kagome waited nervously while her mother gave her the critical once over. Leaning closer to tug a few wisps of hair out of the high, loose knot atop her daughter's head, Mrs. Higurashi stepped back and offered Kagome a watery, trembling smile. “Perfectly lovely.”
 
A relieved grin surfaced just before Kagome noticed the arrival of still more guests. “Mama, I thought you said a few, not the entire population of the city!” she complained weakly. “Is that Totosai?”
 
Sango stepped over to the window as Mrs. Higurashi leaned around to look out, too. “Oh, my, I didn't invite that many people . . . .”
 
“Yes, that's definitely Totosai,” Sango confirmed as she turned away from the window. “Let me go find InuYasha. Maybe he knows something.”
 
Hurrying from the room, Sango nearly ran into Miroku as he stepped out of Souta's room. “Well . . . fancy meeting you here . . . .” he joked as he steadied his wife.
 
“Houshi-sama, have you seen InuYasha?”
 
Miroku sighed. “The first time I've had time to say more than `good morning' to you all day, and you're asking me about InuYasha?”
 
“The shrine is overflowing with uninvited youkai,” she pointed out.
 
Miroku's smile faltered. “I think he's in the old house.”
 
Sango nodded and headed for the stairs. Miroku caught her elbow and made a face. “You'd better let me go find him. I have a feeling he'll say a few things that you're probably better off not hearing with your sensitive ears, and besides, Kagome needs you right now.”
 
Sango rolled her eyes but kissed his cheek as she hurried back to Kagome.
 
Miroku sighed as he ran down the steps. `A shrineful of youkai, huh . . . . Nope, he's not going to be pleased at all . . . .'
 
Weaving his way through the milling crowd as he shot a worried glance at the overcast skies, Miroku finally reached the small apartment house and slipped inside. The hanyou was already aware of the barrage of guests, and he wasn't alone, either. Sesshoumaru leaned against the wall with a slight grin as InuYasha paced the floor, squeezing his hand into a tight fist over and over as he rested his other on Tetsusaiga.
 
Momentarily surprised to see InuYasha wearing his fire rat clothes, and Sesshoumaru clad in his archaic white outfit with the black armor over it, Miroku raised his eyebrows and suppressed his desire to laugh.
 
“What the hell were you thinking, bastard?” InuYasha growled, sending his brother a typical scowl.
 
Sesshoumaru straightened his back. “As unsavory as it might be, it is expected for me to acknowledge you as my brother. What better way for me to do this than at your wedding?”
 
Miroku moved the curtain covering the window aside and peeked out. The few humans in attendance were all staring at the assembled youkai in awe. While some of them looked like they were frightened, others seemed simply fascinated by the ethereal beauty many of the youkai possessed, and even in their human disguises, it had to be painfully obvious that there was something different about those beings.
 
There was one youkai, however, that drew Miroku's notice, and he stifled a groan.
 
“InuYasha . . . I hate to say it,” he broke in as he turned around, dropping the curtain back into place, “Katosan's here.”
 
Rounding incredulous eyes on his elder brother, the hanyou looked like he was about to draw Tetsusaiga as he stomped over to the window and looked outside. “You fucking bastard,” InuYasha growled as he slowly turned to glare at his brother. “What the hell were you thinking?”
 
Sesshoumaru didn't even blink. “Did he bring his mate? I think you've met her, as well.”
 
InuYasha looked like he really didn't want to look. Almost as if he were afraid of who he was going to see, he slowly pushed the curtain aside again as he scanned the crowd for another familiar face.
 
“Oh, hell no,” he growled as the curtain fell back again. Miroku had to look as InuYasha's tirade hit the upswing.
 
“She's the woman with Katosan?” Miroku asked absently, trying to figure out why InuYasha would dislike her. He couldn't remember having met her, in the first place, and she looked decent enough. Golden hair caught up in a sensible chignon, green eyes bright behind the heavy, black framed eyeglasses, she looked like a business woman running late for an important meeting. Inclining her head in greeting as she and Katosan shook hands with others that Miroku hadn't seen before, she smiled, flashing her dimples as she seemed to captivate the strange youkai. “She looks harmless enough.”
 
“Just take your happy ass out there and get rid of her,” InuYasha demanded, glowering at his brother, “before Kagome sees her!”
 
Sesshoumaru's expression was just a little too innocent. “Your miko doesn't care for Ayamakita?”
 
“Keh! What the hell do you think? She saw that bitch kiss me!”
 
“What's that?” Miroku asked, swinging his head around to gape at InuYasha.
 
InuYasha's face shot up in flames. “Just get the fuck rid of her!”
 
“She has something to give your miko, baka.”
 
InuYasha growled in frustration. “If she comes anywhere near Kagome, I'll kill her, myself,” he promised. “I'm warning you—”
 
“How do I look?”
 
InuYasha dragged his glower off Sesshoumaru and schooled his features before turning to look at Shippou. Miroku hid his smile at the awestruck expression on the hanyou's face. The kitsune was dressed in a traditional kimono that bore InuYasha's crest, the white silk outfit was trimmed in crimson. InuYasha just stared, a strange light glowing in his gaze. “You'll do, runt,” InuYasha finally said, his voice choked, dry.
 
Sesshoumaru made a show of checking his watch and cleared his throat. “Come, baka. It's time, though I've little doubt that if your miko is even half as smart as I think she is, she's already escaped.”
 
“Can you not be a bastard, just today?” InuYasha grumbled as he yanked open the door. He wasn't watching where he was going, so intent on growling at Sesshoumaru, that he stumbled right into one of the caterers that Leikizu had hired. A tangle of flying arms and legs as InuYasha landed flat on his back with the youkai caterer plopping down hard in the center of his chest, an unpleasant dampness seeping through his haori and undershirt as InuYasha shoved the caterer aside and shot to his feet.
 
Wrinkling his nose as a string of broken curses rose above the convoluted sounds of the assembled guests, InuYasha draped his arm over his nose as he turned on his heel and stomped right back into the house. Miroku tried to hide his amusement over the sake-soaked hanyou as InuYasha jerked at his clothes and dropped them on the floor as he headed back toward the empty bedroom.
 
“I thought you moved everything last night,” Shippou remarked with a frown.
 
Miroku chuckled. “We did.”
 
“Oi! Monk! Give me your clothes!”
 
“Come again?”
 
InuYasha stomped back into the living room with a marked scowl. “I don't have anything to wear here, remember? Give me your clothes.”
 
Miroku shook his head slowly. “No.”
 
Golden eyes narrowing dangerously, InuYasha bared his fangs, cracking his knuckles as he glowered at the monk. “Don't make me cut you up, lecher.”
 
Sesshoumaru sighed. “Baka . . . wear that.”
 
InuYasha stared at the garment bag laid over the chair with a scowl. “I'd rather—”
 
Indicating InuYasha's towel that he'd grabbed out of the bathroom, Sesshoumaru rolled his eyes and shook his head slowly. “While you obviously wouldn't care if you were married dressed as you are, I doubt your miko would be happy about it.”
 
“It'd make purifying the jewel that much easier later,” Miroku allowed as he checked his watch. InuYasha growled and cracked his knuckles again. “You've got two minutes before Kagome steps out of the house and thinks you've taken off,” he remarked.
 
With a louder growl, InuYasha snatched the garment bag off the chair and huffed off again.
 
Sesshoumaru shook his head again. “Baka.”
 
Miroku and Shippou nodded in silent agreement.
 
 
:8::8::8::8::8::8::8::8::8::8:::
 
 
Kagome stepped out of the shrine, feeling disoriented in the throngs of people she didn't recognize. Whisked into the shrine between her mother and Sango with Leikizu behind her, she scarcely noticed the clap of thunder followed by the first fat rain droplets. Wasn't it a bad omen, to be married during a storm?
 
Passing through the faceless crowd of family and close friends who were already seated inside the shrine, Kagome felt her grandfather's hand on her back as he helped her stumble forward. Where was InuYasha?
 
“InuYasha ran into one of the caterers, literally,” Miroku mumbled to her.
 
She nodded vaguely, and she thought maybe she smiled at him. Was it normal, to feel entirely disconnected at her own wedding? Miroku squeezed her shoulder before returning to his seat. It felt like years passed before InuYasha sat down beside her. It might have only been moments. She could sense his irritation, and she turned to send him a questioning glance. He caught her hand and weaved his fingers into hers. She smiled.
 
Stomach tied in knots, the entire traditional Shinto ceremony passed by in such a haze that she remembered very little of it. Wondering instead where InuYasha had gotten the strangely formal white kimono, she shot him a curious glance. He stared straight ahead as color rose in his cheeks.
 
The priest hurried through the purification, lingering longer over Kagome than he did over InuYasha. Whether that was by accident or design, it didn't register until later that it was likely to keep InuYasha from suffering through the debilitating change from his hanyou form to his human self. The ritualistic prayer seemed to last a long time, and Kagome smiled slightly when InuYasha growled low at her when they were offered the nuptial cups of sake to exchange three times, as was the custom. His noise was a warning, his intention clear: be careful because of the baby.
 
It surprised her when he produced a wedding band from the sleeve of the formal garb. She hadn't realized he would know about such a thing as materialistic as a wedding band, and she didn't realize he'd gone off to buy one. His hands shook slightly as he slipped the ring over her knuckle, and the smile he shot her was almost shy.
 
His nervousness didn't show when he read his vow—a vow that he chose to protect her. Tears rose in her throat, thick enough to keep her from murmuring her name at the end of his promise. He escorted her to the alter to offer the tamagushi to the deities, and Kagome watched, pretending to drink her sake, as her family members as well as Sesshoumaru and Leikizu—who also just pretended—came forward to drink together, showing the merging of the two families into one.
 
With an audible sigh of relief when the ceremony concluded, InuYasha held out his elbow for her, his free hand reaching out, resting over hers, the warmth of his touch a reassuring caress. Feelings wholly safe, completely sheltered with him beside her, she let him lead her from the shrine as the voices wishing them long lives blessed with many children faded from her mind. Focused on InuYasha, she allowed herself a little giggle as he stopped and stared outside at the heavily falling rain.
 
“Do you think they'd notice if we snuck out the other door?” InuYasha mumbled, nodding toward the doors at the other end of the shrine as the few who had been permitted inside for the ceremony swept them toward the courtyard.
 
“Who are all these people?” Kagome asked, leaning closer to InuYasha as they stepped out into the damp courtyard. The wash of faces slowly came into focus, and she smiled as InuYasha squeezed her hand.
 
“Keh. That bastard of a brother's idea of a joke,” InuYasha mumbled as more thunder cracked overhead. The hired help scurried to set up tents and after weighing his options, InuYasha picked Kagome up and darted toward the one tent that had been completely assembled.
 
Kagome's face was slightly flushed but she hugged him as he let go of her legs. She sat down at the main table with him beside her as other people sought to find seats, too. Leaning back in her chair, she grinned at InuYasha as a sudden surge of pride that he was here, that he was beside her coursed through her. “I thought you were going to wear your fire rat clothes.”
 
He snorted. “I did, too, until a box of sake ran into me.”
 
“Not the other way around?” she teased.
 
“Keh . . . you saying I'm clumsy, wench?”
 
“Maybe.”
 
Staring again at the formality of his clothes, she was struck by how closely the outfit resembled Sesshoumaru's, but where Sesshoumaru's embroidery was a deep blue color, InuYasha was crimson red and white. Odd how the same style of clothing could look completely different on two separate men. Where Sesshoumaru's clothes added to his aloof tendencies, his unapproachable demeanor, InuYasha seemed far more vibrant, more alive, with an air of silent nobility, of strength. “Where'd you get that?”
 
The look on his face said it all, as far as Kagome was concerned. Leikizu had obviously supplied the outfit, and Shippou's matched his exactly.
 
Because of the number of assembled guests, the tables were put away, allowing everyone to mingle from tent to tent. Coming by to wish InuYasha and Kagome their well-wishes, the strange sense of not actually being there hung onto Kagome's mind.
 
The wash of faces she didn't know was daunting. Strange to see how they bowed low before InuYasha as he shifted uncomfortably, acute embarrassment evident in the heightened color of his face. “What are they doing?” she asked him.
 
InuYasha flushed and scowled, his eyes downcast. He was uncomfortable with the attention, and she offered him a compassionate grin as he mumbled, “You got me.”
 
“They're acknowledging you,” Sesshoumaru remarked in a tone that suggested that InuYasha ought to know as much.
 
“Why don't you go away?” InuYasha suggested tightly.
 
“And where would you suggest?”
 
InuYasha snorted. “Keh! Who the hell cares as long as it's far away from me?”
 
Eri, Yuka, and Ayumi hurried over and grabbed Kagome's hands. “Come on, Kagome! You've got to change your clothes, remember?”
 
Kagome smiled. Actually she had forgotten about that. It was tradition for the bride to change outfits at least two or three times. Her mother had saved her ceremonial gowns in hope that Kagome would one day wear them at her own wedding. She shot InuYasha a quick grin as the girls hustled her toward the edge of the tent. He looked like he was going to follow—until he was waylaid by Kouga and Ayame.
 
“Nice turn out, dog-shit, though I've little doubt that they're here because Sesshoumaru made them come than for you.”
 
“Shut the hell up, you mangy wolf.”
 
Kagome lifted the hem of her kimono off the ground as she tried to dart to the back doors. “I can't believe how many people are here!” Eri exclaimed. “Did you see that one guy? The one with wolfish smile?”
 
Kagome suppressed her desire to laugh. Eri was talking about Daichi. There was a very good reason that his smile could be described as `wolfish' . . . .
 
“InuYasha's nephew is more my type,” Ayumi remarked, glancing over her shoulder at Nibori who was standing with InuYasha and Kouga. Ayame had moved on, likely giving up on separating the two rivals, and was busy in a discussion with Sango as Miroku caught InuYasha's arm. Obviously the hanyou hadn't liked something that Kouga had said.
 
“Why don't you introduce them?” Yuka piped up.
 
Kagome blushed as InuYasha's stare locked with hers. Fierce, penetrating, his gaze held a hint of intense burn, and he smiled just a little.
 
“Come on, Kagome . . . you can stare at him like that all you want later! Now about introducing Ayumi and that guy . . .” Eri commented.
 
“What's that?” Kagome murmured, dragging her eyes off InuYasha at last as her blush darkened.
 
She stumbled as her foot slipped on the wet pavement. Someone caught her before she fell as Kagome pressed a hand against her lurching stomach and tried to catch her breath. Glancing up at her savior, she stifled a groan to see it was Houjou. “Th-thank you,” she stammered as she stepped back, hoping that InuYasha hadn't seen that.
 
“Are you all right, Higur—Inotaishou?” Houjou asked as color filtered into his cheeks at his near-slip.
 
“Yes, thanks,” Kagome heard herself answer as she dared a peek back to see whether or not InuYasha had seen it. Storming straight toward her and looking as though he was going to try to rip Houjou to tiny bits, InuYasha shot her a `You'd-Better-Stay-Out-Of-This' glower. In an effort to distract InuYasha, Kagome hurried toward the house once more only to be stopped by another voice.
 
“Mama!” Shippou called as he barreled out of the tent and skidded to a stop before her. “You didn't hurt the baby, did you?”
 
It seemed to Kagome that the entire gathering must have heard Shippou since an unnatural hush fell over the crowd. The youkai in attendance seemed to be duly impressed, judging by their smiles of approval, as Kagome's face reddened. InuYasha was suddenly there beside her, and Kagome dared to peek at her friends' shocked faces. Eri blinked in surprise, Yuka had her hands pressed over her mouth, and Ayumi giggled.
 
Mama?” Yuka gasped.
 
Baby?” Eri added.
 
“Congratulations!” Ayumi exclaimed, hopping up and down as she clapped her hands in giddy excitement.
 
“You're pregnant?” Houjou asked, eyes widening.
 
InuYasha broke into a menacing growl as he glared at the human. Kagome tried to poke him in the ribs without being too obvious about it. InuYasha tweaked her nose. Kagome's flush was almost painful as the youkai broke into approving twitters at InuYasha's perceived discipline of his `errant' mate. She telegraphed InuYasha a glare.
 
“Is that true, Kagome?” Yuka pressed.
 
Kagome managed a weak smile as she turned back to her lifelong friends. “Uh, well . . . .”
 
“Oi!” InuYasha exclaimed, his glower turning to bore into hers. “What the fuck do you mean, `uh, well'?”
 
“InuYasha!” she hissed, leaning closer to him. “You're not helping!”
 
“You can't hide my pup!” he bellowed as Kagome wished fervently that the ground beneath her would just open up and swallow her, just this once . . . .
 
Standing in the pouring rain with every single ear listening to her as she tried to find a way to avoid further humiliation, Kagome squared her shoulders and nodded once. “I wasn't trying to, but I didn't really want to announce it at our wedding,” she gritted out before turning on her heel and striding toward the house with as much dignity as she could muster. Under the circumstances, it wasn't much.
 
Breaking into a sprint as soon as she closed the back door behind herself, she darted through the house and up the stairs to the sanctuary of the quiet bedroom. With a groan, Kagome sank down on the edge of Sango's bed, staring at her hands as the wet silk on her skin made her shiver slightly. A soft knock on the door drew a sigh from the new bride. “Go away, InuYasha . . . I think you've said more than enough for one day.”
 
Mrs. Higurashi peeked into the room and extended a towel as she stepped inside and closed the door behind her. “Well, I'm not InuYasha . . . so can I come in?”
 
Managing a small smile for her mother, Kagome nodded. “I'm sorry, Mama. This is a disaster . . . .”
 
“It's not so bad, Kagome . . . .”
 
Kagome shook her head. “I wasn't trying to hide the baby . . . I just . . . it's my wedding day, and . . .” shrugging helplessly, Kagome struggled for the right words. “It's not so much that InuYasha announced it to everyone,” she said quietly. “I guess it's just that this whole day has felt . . . odd.”
 
“Odd how?” her mother questioned quietly, unpinning Kagome's hair and massaging the wet locks with the towel.
 
Again Kagome shook her head. “I just . . . I wish this was over. It seems so . . . fake.”
 
Mrs. Higurashi smiled as she held out Kagome's change of clothes. “Because in your heart you're already committed to InuYasha, because of his making you his mate?”
 
Kagome blinked in surprise and nodded, pausing as she tugged off the clinging wet silk. “Yeah.”
 
Mrs. Higurashi shrugged. “Then pay no mind to the others and what they might say. Just concentrate on you and InuYasha, and let the rest of them disappear.”
 
Kagome finally smiled. “You're right . . . though I could do without the rain,” she admitted as she wrinkled her nose.
 
Mrs. Higurashi sighed then chuckled. “And I could have done without half of the guests down there . . . . Do you know any of them?”
 
“A few . . . Sesshoumaru said they are acknowledging InuYasha . . . .” Kagome stepped over to the window as she buttoned the white cotton under-dress. The bright blue tents only added to the overall graying effect of the scene playing out below. InuYasha must have gone back into the tent because she didn't see him. She sighed. in the few minutes since she'd come inside, the rain had escalated into a steady torrent.
 
The slight smile that had lingered on her lips faded as she stared toward the open edge of the tent canopy. The tall youkai who stood there with a woman . . . “Katosan . . .” she whispered, eyes flaring wide. Did InuYasha know? What was he doing here? And that woman . . . . Narrowing her gaze as she leaned closer to the window, Kagome refused to believe what her eyes told her was true.
 
Mrs. Higurashi dropped the ceremonial kimono over Kagome's shoulders as she stepped back from the window. `Ayamakita . . . why is she here?'
 
A vicious anger flared to life deep in Kagome's chest, outrage that she would dare show her face anywhere near InuYasha again. Brushing aside her mother's ministrations with gentle but firm hands, Kagome stalked toward the door, holding up the flowing garments since she hadn't bothered grabbing her shoes, either. Unmindful of the fact that she was only half-dressed, Kagome deliberately strode through the house and out the back door, back into the rain, her goal clear. If no one else was going to point out that she had no right to be here, Kagome would.
 
Stopping directly before both Katosan and Ayamakita, Kagome didn't mince words as she spoke in a low tone, a deliberate tone. “I want you both to leave,” she said, “now.”
 
Ayamakita offered Kagome a tepid smile as she dug into her purse. Katosan nodded once. “Not pleased to see us, I take it?”
 
“No, not especially. If InuYasha sees you, he'll probably try some Tetsusaiga shoving, and I don't think I'll stop him . . . and you,” she continued, shifting her glare to the woman. “You'd better never go anywhere near him again unless you really do want to be purified. The only reason I didn't before was because you had your filthy hands all over my mate.”
 
A fleeting glimpse of acute embarrassment as well as a vague hint of amusement crossed the audacious woman's features as she nodded slightly in acknowledgement. “I'm sorry for that, Kagome . . . I was young and reckless back then, though perhaps I ought to thank you. If you hadn't purified me . . . Katosan and I may not have found each other again.”
 
Kagome wasn't pacified. “Please just go.”
 
Katosan's smile was tight, contrived, as he glanced over her head at the others who were close enough to hear Kagome's words. “As you wish, Kagome-sama . . . . However you may wish to see what my mate has for you.”
 
Kagome ignored the hush that fell over the gathering once more. InuYasha pulled her back, stepping in front of her. “I told that bastard of a brother of mine to get rid of you. Since he didn't, then I sure as hell will,” he growled, hand on Tetsusaiga, ready to draw it.
 
Stepping around him, she pushed InuYasha back, unwilling to let him stand that close to the lynx youkai.
 
Ayamakita pulled a manila envelope from her bag and extended it to Kagome. “Here you are. You earned them.”
 
InuYasha reached out and snatched the document out Ayamakita's hand before Kagome could reach for it. Staring at it with a dark glower, he finally shoved them under Kagome's nose and demanded, “Explain yourself, wench. Why the hell didn't you tell me about this?”
 
Snatching the papers out of his hand, she looked them over with a frown of her own as she stared at her diploma. She did it. She'd finished school. “My exam results? Why do you have them?”
 
Ayamakita sighed then smiled vaguely. “I'm Mrs. Uneomou.”
 
You?” Kagome repeated, unable to believe what the lynx claimed.
 
Uneomou? As in, Dr. Uneomou?” InuYasha echoed as his eyes flashed up to meet Katosan just before he turned his head to locate his brother. “Oh, damn . . . .”
 
“Is something wrong, InuYasha-sama?” Katosan asked with an indistinctly confused expression.
 
“That fucking bastard . . . Sesshoumaru!” he bellowed, whipping Tetsusaiga out of the scabbard as he stomped toward his infuriating sibling. A few female screams pierced the otherwise silent crowd as people stepped aside, leaving an open path between InuYasha and his target.
 
“Something bothering you, baka?”
 
“Keh! Not for long,” he growled, his intent obvious as he tightened his grip on Tetsusaiga.
 
Kagome ran over to stop InuYasha before he did something he'd regret later. “InuYasha!” She wasn't sure what set him off, but obviously Sesshoumaru understood.
 
“Put that away, InuYasha. It's bad manners to fight on your wedding day, or didn't you know that?”
 
“Bastard . . . You knew Katosan was the doctor, and you didn't say a damn thing! Hell, you encouraged me to take Kagome to him!”
 
“InuYasha!” Kagome hollered again, absently hearing what InuYasha was accusing his brother of having done but more worried that her mother was going to die of utter embarrassment. She grabbed his arm and made him look at her.
 
“Wench!”
 
“No!”
 
“Damn it!”
 
No!
 
“Fuck—”
 
“Absolutely not!”
 
With a frustrated growl and rolling his eyes in disgust, the hanyou resheathed Tetsusaiga. “One of these days, Sesshoumaru . . . .”
 
“I'm sure,” Sesshoumaru remarked dryly.
 
“Kagome! You didn't tell us that he has a sword!” Eri accused as the girls ran over to her again.
 
“It's so big!” Ayumi exclaimed, leaning over slightly to stare at the dormant sword.
 
“Show us again!” Yuka begged.
 
InuYasha rolled his eyes. “Hell, no!”
 
“InuYasha!” Kagome complained at his perceived lack of viable manners.
 
“Damn it, wench . . . .” When he trailed off, Kagome glanced over at InuYasha again only to find him staring at her with his mouth hanging slightly open. With a slight frown, she looked down and stifled a groan. The white cotton under-dress was drenched from the rain and clinging to her entirely too well.
 
Grabbing her hand and dragging her back to the house with a marked snort of disapproval, InuYasha didn't stop until he closed the bedroom door and waved his hand at the closet. “Don't care what, wench, but you're changing out of that right now.”
 
Kagome started to argue when she noticed the brightness in his gaze, the heightened color in his cheeks. With a smile, she stepped over to him, wrapping her arms around his neck as the irritation she'd felt just moments before drained away. “I hate this,” she admitted.
 
His ears twitched. “Do you?”
 
Nodding slowly, she leaned against him, hands on his shoulders to brace herself as she leaned up on tiptoe to kiss him. She didn't have to look to know that his ears were twitching again. “Take me home, InuYasha?”
 
He thought it over for about ten seconds before yanking the door back open and peeking into the hallway. Satisfied that they weren't going to get caught, he led her across the hallway to Souta's room and let go of her long enough to open the window and hop onto the sill. “They'll never notice we're gone . . . at least not until I've had a chance to lock all the doors and windows. Do you think a moat would keep them the hell away from us? Maybe that bastard of a brother of mine knows where I can find some piranha youkai . . . .” She took his hand with a soft giggle at his cryptic planning, and let him drag her onto his back as he hopped down, careful to keep to the shadows of the falling evening.
 
Speeding through the outskirts of the shrine grounds, InuYasha easily sailed over the fence and into the forest. Kagome smiled as more rain drenched them both, laughed as InuYasha picked up speed. As though she were just waking up for the first time all day, she hugged him tight and laid her cheek against his shoulder. “InuYasha?”
 
“Hmm?”
 
“That was the worst wedding, ever.”
 
He sighed. “I'm sorry.”
 
She snuggled closer against him, the warmth of his body keeping the chill of her soaking clothes at bay. “I'm not . . . we didn't need a wedding to make anything official, did we?”
 
He didn't answer, but when she lifted her head to look at him, he was smiling.
 
 
 
 
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A/N:
 
Tamagushi:
A type of offering presented on the occasion of paying formal worship to a deity. (stringy fibers of a tree, about 30cm. in length) or shide (zig-zag strips of cloth or paper) are attached to a branch of sacred tree. Tamagushi are sometimes distributed to worshipers as amulets.
Sansankudo:
“Three times Three” where the bride and groom each consume sake in a Shinto wedding ceremony, which includes the exchanging of nuptial cups of the marriage oath.
 
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Final Thought from Kagome :
Thank GOD that's over . . .
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Blanket disclaimer for this fanfic (will apply to this and all other chapters in Chronicles): I do not claim any rights to InuYasha or the characters associated with the anime/manga. Those rights belong to Rumiko Takahashi, et al. I do offer my thanks to her for creating such vivid characters for me to terrorize.
 
~Sue~

Chapter 88
Chapter 90
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