InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Metamorphosis. ❯ False Alarm ( Chapter 27 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
InuYasha sprinted toward the well with Kagome in his arms. “Hold on, we're almost there.”
Kirara's roar rang out behind them as Sango and Miroku hurried to wish her well.
Kagome winced as InuYasha hit the ground. Trying to be gentle but trying to hurry, too, wasn't working out so well. She heaved a loud sigh and tried to get InuYasha to listen to her. “It doesn't hurt now . . . you could slow down a little.”
“Keh!” he snorted as he increased his speed again.
She shook her head before letting her cheek drop against his shoulder. One sharp pain over twenty minutes ago, and everyone had panicked, which had started a very loud disagreement between InuYasha and Miroku and had delayed Kagome's ability to get to the well and back to her time.
“This is because of you making her sleep in Goshinboku with you,” Miroku hollered.
InuYasha didn't stop but did ask Kagome very loudly, “You want that I should shred him yet?”
Kagome didn't respond right away. She sighed. “Will you two stop fighting? Please?”
“Kagome . . .” InuYasha mumbled as he tightened his grip on her, launching himself and dropping them both neatly into the well and the time slip, leaving behind the worried yells of the friends who couldn't follow them through. “Does it still hurt?”
She smiled wanly, trying to reassure him. His golden eyes were so full of concern that she just wanted to make that go away. “I'll be fine, InuYasha. It doesn't really hurt right now.”
He didn't look like he believed her. “Keh.”
“No, really . . . the pain stopped.” A suspicious thought crept over her, and she winced.
InuYasha intercepted the look and whined. “If I could hurry I would,” he told her. “Hold on, all right?'
“No . . . I . . . um . . . it might be what they call `Braxton-Hicks' contractions.'
He looked duly befuddled.
“Uh . . . false labor . . .”
He blinked quickly. “False?”
She nodded slowly. “I'm not sure though . . . it could be real . . .”
His scowl was frustrated as he snorted. The sound of it echoed around them, and Kagome forced a cheesy grin. “I'm sorry . . . if it isn't real, I mean.”
InuYasha didn't speak to her until they were out of the well on her side and he was striding toward the shrine doors. Unfortunately, Kagome was almost positive that the contractions weren't real labor—she hadn't had any more pains since before they had jumped into the well—but she bit her lip and remained silent, squirming just a little when the next bit of discomfort that hit her was the sudden need to pee.
“I knew it! You're still having those pains, aren't you?
“Uh, no . . . but I have to use the bathroom.”
He snorted but quickened his step. “Oi!” he hollered as he turned around and smashed the doors open with his back.
Mrs. Higurashi ran out of the kitchen, drying her hands on a towel as her eyes darted around in shock at InuYasha's sudden entrance. “Goodness! Is something wrong? Kagome?”
Kagome winced. “I had a pain awhile ago . . . I think it was false labor,” Kagome confessed as she wiggled again in her attempt to get free.
“Be still, wench,” InuYasha insisted.
“But I have to go!” she whined.
InuYasha shot Mrs. Higurashi a quick look before scowling at Kagome. “Keh! Fine,” he retorted, stomping off down the hallway toward the bathroom.
“Put me down!” Kagome argued. “I can go by myself.”
InuYasha didn't listen.
“This is ridiculous!” she tried again.
“Hush, wench. I ain't putting you down till I get to the bathroom.”
Kagome made a face. “Well, you're not coming in with me, so don't even think it.”
“I didn't,” he grumbled, cheeks reddening. “But I ain't risking a damn thing, you got that?”
Kagome's answer was a long sigh as he set her on her feet just outside the bathroom door and turned his back to wait. Kagome started to close the door. InuYasha's hand shot out to stop her. “InuYasha!”
“What if you have another of those pains?”
“Then I'll let you know when I'm finished,” she gritted out, leaning all her weight against the door to close it.
InuYasha growled in frustration. “You'd better!” he bellowed as the door closed in his face.
Kagome snorted as she made quick work of relieving the strain on her ever-shrinking bladder. She could hear InuYasha's claws clicking against the floor outside as he impatiently waited for her to finish. She rolled her eyes as she deliberately took her time washing her hands as she decided she really could benefit from a thorough tooth-brushing, as well.
She was just rinsing her mouth when the bathroom door crashed open. She straightened up quickly and gasped out a small squeak before turning to pin InuYasha with a baleful glower.
“What the fuck is taking you so long in here?” he demanded before she had a chance to speak.
“I was brushing my teeth,” she retorted, crossing her arms over her chest as she glared at the pushy hanyou.
“Keh! I told you to hurry it up, didn't I?”
“InuYasha, perhaps you should let me handle this.”
He didn't look like he wanted to agree. He stared at Kagome's mother before finally, reluctantly, stepping aside. “Keh!”
Mrs. Higurashi patted his shoulder as she edged past him. “Come on, Kagome. Maybe you should lie down for awhile. As long as you don't have any other pains, I'd say you're not really in labor, but we should be safe, don't you agree?”
Kagome forced a smile for her mother. “All right,” she agreed reluctantly as her mother slipped a comforting arm around Kagome's shoulders and escorted her out of the bathroom. InuYasha followed, stomping his disapproval in their wake.
To please her mother, Kagome laid down on the sofa, propping her feet on some fluffy throw pillows. Mrs. Higurashi hurried off to the kitchen to get her a bottle of water. InuYasha hunkered down beside her, an unguarded expression of worry washing over his features as he flatted his ears and clumsily pushed her hair out of her face. “I'm fine, really,” she maintained with a gentle smile. Somehow, seeing his obvious concern tempered her irritation at his perceived irrational behavior. “I promise.”
“Kagome . . .”
Her smile brightened as she watched him struggle to find words for whatever he was trying to say. “Why would you do this?” He shook his head, gaze dropping away as he closed up into himself again, his arms crossing together inside the sleeves of his haori. She could feel him pulling away from her, could feel his soul trying to distance itself from hers.
“InuYasha . . . you know why.”
“I know why . . . I just don't know . . . why. Women die birthing pups . . . This one ain't even yours, and you get mad at me for being worried when . . . Kagome . . .”
And she understood. He wasn't trying to distance himself from her because he was trying to hurt her or just being a jerk. He was afraid, and that fear broke her heart. Reaching out to him, touching his cheek despite his first efforts to move away from her, she persisted, slipping her fingers under his chin to force him to meet her gaze. “InuYasha, it's all right. I love Sango and Miroku like they were my own family. I wouldn't have offered to do this if I wasn't sure . . . if I didn't know that everything would be the way it was meant to be.”
He didn't look comforted. “Keh.”
“I promised you, didn't I?” she reminded him as she let her hand drop to his arm. “I promised I'd never leave you, that I was with you because I wanted to be, remember?”
He gave one jerky nod in agreement.
“Good . . . because it's true. Trust me.”
Mrs. Higurashi hurried back into the living room with a bottle of water and a plate of assorted crackers. “Here you go, dear. I need to run to the store. InuYasha, will you keep an eye on Kagome? I'm sure she'll be fine, but just in case . . .”
Mrs. Higurashi smiled. “Thank you. I won't be gone long. No arguing, you two.”
“Hear that, InuYasha?” Kagome teased as she rolled onto her side and grinned impishly at the hanyou, trying to coax him out of his bleak mood. “You can't fight with me.”
Her commentary worked like a charm. “Keh! It means I can tell you what to do, and you gotta do it, you mean.”
“Oh, really. I don't think so . . .” she argued with a giggle. “I'm the patient. You have to baby me.”
“Thought you said you were fine,” he shot back.
“Thought you didn't believe me,” she countered.
“Keh! I don't! You wouldn't tell me if there was something the matter.”
“How can I prove I'm fine?” she finally asked with a long-suffering sigh.
He thought that over then blushed just a little. “Kiss me.”
She narrowed her gaze at his entirely too-smug expression. Since the day in Goshinboku, he hadn't acted like he wanted to kiss her again, or maybe . . . `Maybe he was too shy to ask . . .' Still . . . there had been a few times when she had thought he would, and when he hadn't . . . “I can't.”
It was his turn to narrow his gaze as a suspicious glint entered his eyes. “Why not?”
She shrugged. “Because I'm still doing you that first favor . . . I can't kiss anyone, remember?”
His mouth fell open in outraged indignation, and he snorted loudly in response. “Keh! Wench—”
“I told you, you'd have to alter that favor or you'd have to do the kissing,” she reminded him.
He wrinkled his nose and shifted his expression into The Pout. “Fat fucking chance. I ain't changing the favor, so forget it.”
“Because if you somehow manage to stumble into that damn butterfly's toxin, you'd sure as hell better not be trying to kiss it instead, that's why.”
Kagome's first thought was that InuYasha was being ridiculous. Her second thought was . . . `Ew! That butterfly youkai is a female, isn't it?' In the end, she hrumphed and flopped over, giving him her back as she gritted her teeth together and snorted in a remarkably close imitation of his, `Keh!'
“That youkai is a girl, baka! Like I'd try to kiss a girl!”
InuYasha snorted. “That don't matter . . . she obviously takes on the form of whatever is in your head.”
Kagome didn't bother to comment on that.
“Are you sure you're okay?” he asked suspiciously.
Kagome sighed. “Yes, I think so.”
“Drink some of your water,” he ordered.
Figuring it wasn't really worth the argument, she rolled over and sat up before taking the water bottle and doing as she was told.
“You look tired, wench,” he informed her. “You should take a nap . . . pathetic human.”
“How can I possibly be tired?” she grumbled. “None of you will let me do anything anymore . . . I'm not dying.”
InuYasha snorted. “Can't blame anyone for being careful.”
“Then you can't blame me for being tired of everyone hovering over me like I am dying,” she told him as she leaned over to set the bottle on the coffee table. “I can't take another four or six weeks of this. It's stifling.”
InuYasha looked duly offended. “Stifling?” he echoed. “I'm stifling you?”
She relented. “Not you . . . everyone . . . Sango and Miroku act like I can't even be trusted to walk anywhere alone . . . they've even got Shippou and Ichisaru in on the act, and you . . . well, your concern is all right,” she admitted with a small smile.
“Keh!” he shot back as his cheeks flushed. “I told you before, I'd be happy to shred that fucking monk . . .”
Kagome sat up straighter, bracing her small of her back as she arched forward to stretch with a low groan and a wince.
InuYasha frowned and stood up, lifting her gently and sitting down with her on his lap. Pushing on her shoulder as she grabbed a throw pillow to hold against her chest, she closed her eyes as his fingers firmly worked the constricted muscles. “Ah,” she sighed, resting her cheek against the pillow. “That's nice.”
She smiled. “Thank you.”
He didn't answer as he rubbed the stiffness out of her back. Finally pulling her against his chest, he adjusted her carefully as she settled herself against his shoulder and closed her eyes.
“Here,” he said as he stuffed the vial of blood into her hand. “You'd better shake this.”
Deciding that it wouldn't be worth it to argue with him, Kagome popped open one eye and did as she was told. He did the same and tucked the talisman away before resting his cheek against her head. “I'm sorry I wasn't really in labor,” she mumbled as she closed her eyes again.
“Keh. You should be,” he teased. “It might be worth it, though . . . I wonder how long that monk and Sango will sit at the well.”
Kagome shook her head slightly as soft waves of sleepiness licked at her. She vaguely felt the warm press of InuYasha's lips against her forehead. She was smiling when she fell asleep.
“So when are you going to bring back Sister?” Ginta asked as he and Hakkaku lounged beside the hot spring where their leader was bathing.
Kouga stood up and stretched. “I told you, as soon as she whelps that pup, I'll claim her.” He frowned as he stared at his comrades on the shore. “Before I do, though, I expect the two of you to bathe . . . you'll offend my woman if you don't.”
Ginta gulped. Hakkaku scratched his ear. “But—”
“Nope, definite bathing,” Kouga insisted. “Anyway, it'll be soon enough.”
Ginta shook his head. “Kouga . . . why do you still want her if she's carrying someone else's pup?”
Kouga shot Ginta a dark look. “Because she hasn't been claimed.”
“Then how did she get the pup inside her?” Hakkaku demanded as he scratched his other ear.
Kouga's frown deepened. He wasn't too sure about that, either. “Who cares as long as that stupid mutt keeps his filthy paws off her?”
Ginta and Hakkaku exchanged confused looks and shrugged. Kouga ignored them and strode toward shore. Waiting until he was hovering over his fellow wolf youkai, he shook vigorously to spray them both with water.
“Kouga!” Hakkaku complained.
“No!” Ginta hollered as he held up his hands to shield the water.
Kouga laughed and grabbed for his clothes. They'd fallen off the rock where he'd left them. “And in case you're wondering, that was not a bath.”
That must have been exactly what the other wolves were thinking, if the sullen expressions on their faces meant anything. Kouga rolled his eyes as he shook out his shirt. Blinking quickly as a thin veil of dust rose out of the fur, Kouga growled when a few particles made his eyes water.
“What's that?” Ginta asked, looking up and squinting as the dust settled over him.
“I don't know,” Hakkaku answered as he, too, stared at the powder in the air.
“Quit staring at it, fools!” Kouga snarled, thumping his comrades' heads together.
Kouga blinked quickly and shook his head. At least his eyes had stopped watering. With an inward shrug, the wolf youkai finished dressing.
“Kagome! You're still pregnant!” Miroku greeted as InuYasha hopped out of the well with Kagome in his arms.
“Kami, Miroku, getting smarter every day, aren't you?” InuYasha asked dryly as he headed back toward the village.
“It was false labor,” Kagome admitted, squirming to peek over the hanyou's shoulder at the others who were running to keep up with InuYasha. “I'm sorry . . .”
“As long as you're all right, Kagome,” Sango assured her. “InuYasha! Slow down before you make her ill!”
“Keh!” InuYasha snorted but didn't slow down. “She's fine!” His gaze dropped to her face for a moment, and he frowned. “Are you all right?”
She nodded. “Yes . . . but I can walk, you know.”
He ignored that and ignored their friends hollering behind them, as well.
She grimaced as she tried to get the baby to move aside since it was currently situated uncomfortably on her bladder—again. InuYasha didn't miss the expression, his eyes lighting in instant alarm. “Kagome?”
She sighed and stared pointedly at him, a look he knew well enough.
He made a face. “Damn it, wench . . .”
Still he stopped and let her down before turning to glare at the approaching exterminator and monk. InuYasha shook his head. If she didn't birth that pup soon, she might as well take up residence on her side of the well in the bathroom . . .
== == == == == == == == == ==
Final Thought from Kouga :
… What the hell was that … ?
Blanket disclaimer for this fanfic (will apply to this and all other chapters in Metamorphosis): 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.