InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Metamorphosis. ❯ Confrontations ( Chapter 45 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
InuYasha paced the floor in the main hall as he waited impatiently for his brother to show his face. Kagome clamped her mouth closed, trying to refrain from commenting as the hanyou restlessly stalked.
“I fucking hate this place,” InuYasha grumbled as he passed Kagome for the umpteenth time. “Makes my skin crawl, just being here.”
Kagome caught his sleeve to stop him. “You've been here before?”
The look he shot her plainly stated that he thought she ought to know the answer to that. “What do you think?”
She shrugged. “I don't know . . . you've never talked about it before.”
He jerked his arm away and resumed his pacing. “Keh! Because I fucking hate it, that's why.”
“Sesshoumaru-sama will be with you shortly,” Jaken commented as he scuttled into the room. Giving InuYasha a condescending look, as though he wasn't worthy of the time or trouble, the imp turned on his heel and hurried back out before he could be questioned further.
Kagome frowned. It wasn't a surprise that Jaken behaved like that. Still, in her opinion, it was rude, and it was on the tip of her tongue to call the youkai back to berate him for it when she noticed the familiar face peeking around the wide archway that led to the kitchen beyond. She smiled. “Hi, Rin! How are you?”
“Kagome! You remember me?”
“Of course,” Kagome chided as the girl hesitantly stepped out from behind the wall. “How could I forget you? You've grown!”
Rin smiled, happy that Kagome recognized her after all this time. InuYasha stopped pacing and stared speculatively at the girl. “Is it true?” he demanded. “Is Kagura back?”
Rin's smile widened. “Yes! She's going to stay! She told Sesshoumaru-sama that she would, and—”
“That's enough, Rin.”
InuYasha's gaze shifted from Rin to Sesshoumaru. The youkai swept past the girl and with a single look, Rin bowed and backed out of the doorway that she'd entered. “What do you want?” Sesshoumaru asked, dispensing of any pleasantries that should have been exchanged.
Casually stepping in front of Kagome, InuYasha folded his hands together and regarded his brother suspiciously. “Did you do it? Did you bring Kagura back to life?”
Sesshoumaru offered an almost imperceptible shrug. “I did not.”
“But Rin said—” Kagome began as she tried to peek around InuYasha.
“I said I did not have anything to do with it. I did not say it wasn't true.”
“So it is true . . .” InuYasha stated, his gaze narrowing as he continued to regard his brother. “How?”
Sesshoumaru flicked his wrist, as though the question were frivolous. “She does not remember.”
InuYasha snorted. “Keh! Don't be stupid, bastard. The dead can't come back to life.”
“Can't they?” Sesshoumaru countered coldly. “You, better than anyone, ought to know that they can.”
“And that never should have happened, either!” InuYasha snarled. No matter what his feelings on the matter, Kagome knew that it was and always would remain a sore point with InuYasha. The vehemence in his tone made her wince. “That was dark magic, and you know it!”
“Believe what you will, InuYasha. This Sesshoumaru cares not.”
“Are you sure it's her?” InuYasha asked as Sesshoumaru started to turn away.
The question seemed to bother Sesshoumaru. The tai-youkai slowly turned back, gaze narrowing dangerously. “Be not a fool! Think you I would simply believe a body that claims to be someone without a shred of proof? I leave that idiocy to you.”
Raw anger flashed in InuYasha's eyes. “What do you mean by that? Why don't you shut the fuck up, you hella nasty—”
“I assume you are discussing me.”
Kagome gasped, her hand covering her mouth, as Kagura descended the stairs with an apologetic smile. “Kagura . . .”
“We watched you die,” InuYasha growled, distrust evident in his stance, the protective way he stood in front of Kagome. “The dead can't come back.”
Kagura shook her head. “I can't explain it. If I could, I'd be happy to tell you how it happened, InuYasha.”
“Keh. You still reek of that bastard, Naraku . . .”
“InuYasha,” Kagome reprimanded softly. “That can't be helped, can it?”
“It ain't possible,” InuYasha went on, ignoring Kagome's words. “Were you resurrected into a clay doll, too?”
Kagura chuckled. “No. I'm alive.”
InuYasha looked skeptical at best. “It can't be done.”
Sesshoumaru stepped forward, leveling a glower at his half-brother. “Obviously it can, baka.”
“Keh, whatever.” InuYasha let that go for the moment, golden gaze shifting to pin Sesshoumaru with a calculating look. “Tell me what you know of this nameless evil that everyone's warned me about.”
Sesshoumaru's lips turned up in a cynical sneer. “And you think I would know any better than you?”
“You're telling me you don't know a damn thing?”
“That's what I'm telling you.”
“Keh. You're lying.”
“Why would I lie?”
“You tell me, bastard.”
Sesshoumaru's back stiffened. Kagome stepped out from behind InuYasha to put a hand on his sleeve. “InuYasha, maybe he really doesn't know.”
“If he don't know then he's getting careless,” InuYasha argued. “Simple as that.”
“Careless? This Sesshoumaru?” Sesshoumaru countered. “I was not careless enough to allow the one who would be my mate to bear another's offspring. I was not careless enough to be affected by a toxin that I knew nothing about. Careless indeed, InuYasha. Who is the fool?”
Kagome blinked in surprise, cheeks reddening at the youkai's blunt statements.
InuYasha growled. “How do you know about the toxin?”
“I smell it on you, baka. Do you honestly seek to tell me you know not where this toxin originated?”
“I know where it originated,” InuYasha shot back. “Why do I have the feeling you know more than you're telling me?”
“Do you know something, Sesshoumaru?” Kagome asked. “Who is she? We're looking for her . . . she killed—”
“Keh! Never mind, wench. He won't tell you any more than he'd tell me. We're wasting our time here.”
Kagome sighed when InuYasha grabbed her hand and dragged her toward the doors. Peeking over her shoulder, she caught the odd look of deliberation on Sesshoumaru's face. “Wait,” she said, tugging on her hand as she tried to stop the hanyou.
“Come on, Kagome. Once a bastard, always a bastard. Don't you know that by now?”
“No, I think—”
“InuYasha,” he called after them as InuYasha yanked the door open.
InuYasha stopped and swung around to stare at his brother. “Hisa-what?”
Sesshoumaru blinked, a slight tension around his lips as he glared at his half-brother. “Hisadaicho, baka. The one you seek. Her name is Hisadaicho.”
The laughter surrounded her . . . the drunken sounds of giddy merriment. Eyes closed as she sought to steady her frayed nerves, as she fought to keep herself calm in the midst of the absolute insanity. `Is this what I wanted? Is this meant to be?'
“Open your eyes, my butterfly . . . to live you must indulge your senses . . .”
A tremor of fear shot through her. Hands bound above her head, secured to the table where she lay, too many sensations warred with the inborn sense of propriety, the knowledge that what she was experiencing wasn't natural, wasn't pure . . .
“I . . . I can't do this,” she whimpered, a half-sob, a quiet entreaty.
“To prepare you for the change, you must,” he ordered, his tone cold, callus. “Give yourself to your physical needs, my butterfly. Do this for me.”
“I . . . but I . . .”
“Would I subject you to something that wasn't necessary?”
“. . . No . . .”
His lips on hers were her reward. Hot, vapid, to control or to be controlled . . . she whimpered softly, struggled against the ties that bound her. All too soon, he pulled away leaving her shivering, breathless. “As you wish, my koishii.”
He chuckled. “That's what I wanted to hear. You and I shall live forever. This is but the first step in your metamorphosis.”
`Metamorphosis,' she thought as she heard him cross the chamber, discerned the scrape of the door. Opening her eyes, she saw him there, leaning against the wall as faceless people pressed in around her. Tugging at her clothes, greedy hands on her flesh . . . She smiled as her body betrayed her nervousness. Bodies invading hers as she cried out time and again, she didn't see faces; only felt the welcoming throb, the pulses, the heat. Pleasure became pain, and pain melded into pleasure again. A torturous ebb, a wicked flow . . . he caught her gaze though the mist of lust, the veil of passion, his eyes full of promises, of more satisfaction yet to come. `Yes . . . my metamorphosis . . . and then . . . I shall fly . . .'
Lavender eyes flashing open in the dusky dim of the predawn light, Hisadaicho sighed as the lingering dream faded. Shifting her body as she relished the feel of Aki's satiny skin against hers, she closed her eyes again. Just for a moment, for the vaguest of seconds, her koishii was with her, whispering in her ear.
`The wolf youkai, my butterfly . . . destroy him for me . . . destroy him, and before he dies, tell him in whose name you've come.'
Hisadaicho untangled herself from the leaden body that pinned her down. Wandering over to the earthen vase, she breathed in the rising fumes with a smile. “And the girl, my koishii? Why can't I just kill her?”
The voice came to her mind, a breath in the dark. `We need her, my butterfly . . . we need her . . . and we need the hanyou, at least for a little while longer . . .'
“Why do you think he told you?”
InuYasha glanced up from sharpening Tetsusaiga and stared at Kagome for a moment. “I dunno . . .”
Kagome rolled over onto her stomach, feet kicked up in the air as she rested her chin in the cradle of her hands. “Do you believe him?”
She wrinkled her nose. “Well, it is the best lead we've had so far, right? Still . . . Sesshoumaru rarely tells you anything. I wonder why he told you this?”
InuYasha growled. “I dunno.”
With a sigh, Kagome sat up. “All right, all right, you don't want to talk about it. Can I ask you something else then?”
He didn't answer, so she took his silence as agreement.
Wrapping her arms around her legs, she rested her chin on her knees as she stared at him. “Why do you hate the castle so much?”
He shot her a look that stated plainly that he didn't want to talk about that, either.
“Did you live there?”
InuYasha shot to his feet and jammed Tetsusaiga into the scabbard before stuffing it through his waistband and stalking around the fire. “Nope.”
Kagome frowned. “But you've been there.”
“I don't understand.”
InuYasha shook his head. “It's not important. I don't wanna talk about it.”
“. . . All right.”
Turning her head, resting her cheek on her knees, Kagome stared into the fire. `I wish he'd just talk to me . . . I know there's something that really bothers him about that castle, other than Sesshoumaru . . . but what?'
Flopping down next to her, InuYasha heaved a sigh and shook his head, ears flattening as he jammed his arms together under the cover of his haori sleeves. “I . . . I wanted to live there, for awhile, when I was young,” InuYasha admitted softly. “After Mother died . . . I just wanted a home.”
“And Sesshoumaru . . . ?”
InuYasha shook his head, dropping his arms to the ground as his claws dug into the earth. “He didn't have time to deal with a half-breed, he said. Anyway, it don't matter. I'd have just turned into a bastard like him, so who cares?”
Kagome swallowed hard as she reached out to take his hand. “I care,” she whispered.
A startled look shot through his gaze, a lingering vulnerability that he tried so hard to hide. “Keh. I don't care about it anymore. I'm too old to need that now.”
Kagome shook her head. “Everyone needs a place to belong, even if it's only in their heart.”
Staring at her, his brows furrowed as he slowly nodded, InuYasha managed a little smile. “I have that place, Kagome.”
She smiled as the rest of his sentence echoed in her mind, the part that he had said through his gaze. `You gave me that place . . .' “So do I.”
He looked like he wanted to say something but couldn't find the right words. Staring at her in the firelight, a flicker of a thousand emotions raced over his expression in a matter of moments. He shook his head, deciding that maybe the things that he wanted to say were already things that she knew, and when she smiled at him, he knew that she really understood.
She reached out, pressed her palm against his cheek, her touch enough to tell him the things that she wanted him to know. He leaned forward to kiss her, a simple gesture meant to suffice for words that just wouldn't come.
Until her stomach rumbled—loudly. Blushing as InuYasha sat back, amusement lighting his gaze, Kagome grinned sheepishly he shook his head and rolled to his feet. “All right, wench. I'll find something for you to eat.”
“I'm fine,” she protested as a guilty pang rippled through her.
He shook his head. “Keh! Right, wench,” he argued. “Stay here. I'll be back.”
She watched him leave as her smile widened. True, they'd had fish earlier. For some reason, InuYasha had been hungrier than normal so she had given him more than half of hers. Staring at the fire, she reveled in the warmth that filled her, the delicious sense that came from InuYasha and not from the blazing logs before her.
InuYasha knelt on the rock staring down into the water with a frown of concentration. Fishing in the middle of the night wasn't exactly an easy task, but he couldn't let Kagome go hungry, either. `Last time I trust the wench when she says she ain't hungry,' he thought as he missed the fish he'd been trying to catch.
Still he smiled into the darkness. Something about Kagome just made him feel good inside.
Shaking his head as he tried to focus on catching a fish to feed the wench, InuYasha frowned in concentration as he stared into the blackened water.
An inviting scent announced his audience before glanced up. Kagome stood on the river bank with a smile on her face as she gazed at him. Eyes veiled in shadows, the blue moonlight dusting her cheeks in the contrast of night, she looked like some sort of ethereal nymph, a goddess of the woods . . .
“I'm really not that hungry,” she called to him, her voice soft yet strong enough to carry.
InuYasha snorted. “Keh! I heard how `not hungry' you were, remember?”
She shrugged and hitched herself up on a boulder. “Suit yourself then. I'll just sit here and stare at the moon . . . alone . . . by myself . . .”
InuYasha rolled his eyes as his hand shot into the water. The fish he'd been aiming for darted away before he could catch it, and he shook his hand as he wrinkled his nose.
“InuYasha . . .”
“Quiet, wench. I'm fishing.”
Kagome stood up on the rock and shuffled toward the edge. “Look, InuYasha . . . I'm going to fall . . .”
“You can swim,” he called back carelessly.
“Sure, I can,” she agreed. “Woo . . . watch out!”
He peeked up at her. She tipped back and forth, arms stretched out as she tried to keep her balance. “Clumsy, you will fall,” he informed her.
“I won't,” she assured him. “I have cat-like grace and dexterity! I'll never—eep!”
And with that, she slipped off the rock and plummeted into the water. She came up sputtering, wiping water out of her eyes with nimble fingers as the fish he'd been trying to catch swam away. InuYasha stood up and shook his head. “Keh! There goes your food.”
“I fall in the water, and all you care about is that the fish are gone?” she complained. “I'm soaked! Besides, I'm cold!”
InuYasha hopped onto the rock Kagome had fallen from and knelt there, peeking over the side. “Damn, wench, you are soaked.”
That earned him a scowl. “Yeah, I know. Help me out?”
He snorted. “Keh! I don't need a bath, thanks.”
Heaving a frustrated sigh, Kagome started floundering toward shore. InuYasha grinned as she tried to retain a measure of dignity. Water streaming off her body as she emerged, InuYasha's humor died as he stared. The thin white cotton blouse she wore clung to her now, revealing curves that he knew were there but tried to ignore. It was impossible. Her outline in the moonlight was too soft, too inviting. The smell of the dampness that sluiced from her was too blatant an invitation, a force not to be disregarded.
Standing on the edge of the stream, Kagome tried to wring out the hem of her skirt as her hair dripped softly onto the smooth pebbles. InuYasha stood and dropped off the boulder as he slowly stepped toward Kagome. Her breath caught in her throat, a soft gasp in the moonlight as she straightened up to stare at him, her gaze locked with his.
“InuYasha?” she whispered, her voice hushed in the quiet.
Reaching out to push the wet hair off her face, InuYasha's fingers were shaking. “You're going to get sick,” he replied, his tone husky, choked. Ignoring the water, he picked her up and slowly headed back toward camp.
“Wait,” she murmured as her arms wrapped around his neck.
He stopped but didn't put her down. “What?”
InuYasha glanced down at her. “K-Kagome?”
Eyes half-closed, she stared at him through her spiky lashes. “Kiss me, InuYasha. Kiss me now.”
Pulling herself up against him, she tugged on his neck to bring his head down. Shocked into compliance at her soft order, he closed his eyes as she rose to meet him, her breath hot, misting his lips.
A sharp gasp made him snap his eyes open. Chin rising as he frowned in confusion, he glanced from Kagome in his arms to the Kagome standing in the tree line. Her eyes wide, hurt, she smothered soft sob and turned to run.
== == == == == == == == == ==
Final Thought from Hisadaicho:
Ahh, Kagura . . . now behave, and I'll allow you to live …
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.