InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Metamorphosis. ❯ Urges ( Chapter 57 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
InuYasha leaned back and yawned as he stretched his arms out and arched backward.
Kagome squinted at her magazine and turned to catch more firelight on the page.
Dear Miss Love,
I am seeing this guy who is sort of hard to interpret, and I need help! There are times when I think that he loves me but at other times he doesn't seem as interested. I tried once to ask him about this, but he gets defensive and won't talk about it. Is there a way to figure out what he really wants?
Kagome reread the question before peeking over the page at the hanyou who was staring at the fire with a marked frown on his face and his arms wrapped around Tetsusaiga. `That sounds like someone I know,' she thought with an inward sigh. `It's a little different though . . . to him, he's been rejected so often, it's kind of amazing that he shows that he cares, at all. . .' She sighed and hid her face behind the magazine again.
With a sigh, InuYasha rolled to his feet and sat down beside her as he dug the talisman out of his shirt and dangled it over the top of the magazine. Kagome stared at it for a moment then shook it, letting the publication fall onto the bedroll as she silently watched him shake it, too.
When he got up to move away again, Kagome caught his hand and tugged till he sat back down again.
“You forgot something.”
InuYasha shot her a quizzical glance. “I did?”
She nodded as a little smile surfaced.
“Don't you remember what today is? I remind you every year.”
He looked confused and slowly shook his head.
She sighed. “It's my birthday.”
His ears flattened, likely thinking that she was about to yell at him for not remembering. “I, uh . . . forgot . . . happy birthday.”
Kagome shook her head. “It's all right. You never remember. Anyway, you realize I've known you for exactly five years now.”
He wrinkled his nose as he tried for a nonchalant shrug. “Bet you wish you didn't fall through that well.”
“Why would I?”
“Your life would have been simpler. You wouldn't have to put up with me.”
She grinned. “And who says I mind putting up with you?”
He sighed and grimaced as he shot her a sidelong glance. “I don't have anything to give you.”
“I've never wanted anything,” she replied, “but if you really wanted to give me something . . .”
InuYasha seemed nervous, hesitant. Finally he asked, “What?”
She smiled. “A kiss.”
“What's the catch?”
She wrinkled her nose. “Why does there have to be a catch?”
“Dunno. Is there one?”
“Do you want there to be one?”
“Keh! That's a stupid question.”
“You brought it up, dog-boy.”
He finally grinned, just a little. “Okay, so you want a kiss—just a kiss—no catches, right?”
She considered that then nodded. “Sounds right.”
He pondered it slowly, as though he were trying to decide if there really was some sort of hidden catch that she wasn't telling him. With a small shrug, he leaned closer, kissed her cheek before he quickly sat up, blushing as he stared into the fire.
She stifled a sigh. `Well, that wasn't what I had in mind,' she thought. “That was my birthday kiss?” she complained. “I got better kisses out of you for no reason at all, InuYasha.”
InuYasha snorted. “You said a kiss. I gave you a kiss. What did you think you were going to get?”
Kagome rolled her eyes. “You're such a baka,” she informed him. “I've gotten better kisses out of my grandpa!”
“Oi!” he growled as she shot to her feet to stow the magazine back in her bag. “What's that supposed to mean?”
She dug out her pajamas and shot him another dark look before she headed off toward the cover of the forest to change.
InuYasha hopped up and ran after her. “You can't just leave, wench!” he bellowed. “You're not supposed to be out of my sight!”
“I'm here, InuYasha, and I'm not changing by the fire,” she countered.
He made a face. “Well, keep talking then.”
She sighed. “All right . . . what do you want to talk about?”
“Don't care . . . just talk.”
“Well, it's kind of hard to talk without a topic,” she remarked.
“Just keep talking.”
“Oh, no,” she mumbled, her voice slightly muffled. “Nuts.”
Kagome poked her head out from behind a stout tree trunk. “Nothing,” she grumbled as she disappeared again.
“Nothing?” he echoed. “Why are you so irritated if it's nothing?”
With a loud sigh she stepped out of the forest with her pajama shorts on but still wearing the same blouse she'd worn all day. InuYasha blinked in surprise. “Oi, you forgot your shirt.”
She narrowed her eyes at him as she swept past on her way to stow her clothing again. “I didn't forget,” she tossed over her shoulder as he fell in step behind her. “The zipper's stuck.”
“What do you mean, it's stuck?”
“I mean, it's stuck. I can't unzip it. Can you try?”
His eyes rounded as he stared at her. “No!” he hollered. “It's on your chest!”
Kagome glanced down at the zipper in question and snorted. “Yeah, it is. It's also stuck. I can't get it to budge.” She shook her head and curled up on her bedroll with a heavy sigh. “Never mind, InuYasha. Just let me know when I start stinking since I can't get out of this shirt to change.”
She didn't see the pained expression on his face, didn't notice the way his ears drooped as he gazed down at her. He stood for long moments, eyebrows drawn together as he stifled a sigh.
She was almost asleep when she felt the blanket being pulled up over her, tucked under her chin. “InuYasha,” she breathed softly as her mind drifted away in slumber.
Next to her, InuYasha smiled.
The children ran around Kaede with mirthful laughter as the old miko trudged along with them. “Stray not too far, little ones!” she called as they ran off.
The tall man stepped out of the forest ahead. Kaede frowned. His sallow skin seemed untouched by the sun, his scraggly hair hung in oily strands around his face. He strode toward her as Kaede discerned an unsettling quality in his aura. `He should not be here . . . What is he?'
“I seek the hanyou InuYasha.”
Kaede didn't answer right away. “Children, leave this old miko,” she encouraged with a smile. The children darted off to play before Kaede faced the man again. “Why do ye seek him?”
The man shrugged. “I have business with him. It doesn't concern you.”
Kaede turned back toward the village. “He is not here,” she answered simply enough.
“Where is he?”
“I know not.”
The man's murky eyes narrowed. “You lie, old woman.”
Kaede didn't deny it. “Ye . . . ye are not of this world,” she countered. “Why do ye seek to remain?”
The man didn't answer. Kaede glanced over her shoulder and watched as he disappeared back into the forest.
`An undead samurai . . . why does he wander the plane of the living, and what does he want with InuYasha?'
She shook her head as her frown deepened. It was more than that. The man's soul . . . it was tainted, vile, dark . . . as though the light side of it was missing—as though he were no more than a shell of his former self . . .
Kagome jerked on the zipper with a frustrated growl. Her fingertips ached from the force she applied to the zipper pull as she tried to yank it open. With a dejected sigh, her hand dropped as she gazed longingly at the steam rising from the hot spring as dawn started to break over the horizon.
InuYasha was still sleeping—she hoped—back at the campsite. Glancing over her shoulder, she could see the glow of the fire filtering through the trees. She wasn't that far away, and she did really need a bath—if she could get the stupid shirt off, that was.
She'd worn the shirt for almost three days now. It was disgusting, foul, nasty, and she just wanted a bath. InuYasha was being more stubborn about it than she could fathom, absolutely adamantly refusing to help her get the stupid zipper unstuck.
With a half moan, Kagome dug into her backpack for the first aid kit. `There's got to be something in here that'll help,' she thought as the first signs of desperation started to show. Her search stopped when she pulled out a tiny jar of petroleum jelly. Making a face as she dug her finger into the jar, she smeared the lubricant all over the zipper as well as onto the edge of the fabric, just to be safe. After cleaning off her hands on an alcohol towelette, she grasped the zipper and tugged.
Her fingers slid right off the pull, and she stifled a sigh. Wrapping the towelette around the zipper pull, she tried again. After five minutes of that, she dropped the towelette with a disgusted sigh and glared at the offending blouse. `Funny. It looked harmless enough in the store . . . there should have been a warning label on it: `Caution, cannot be removed, ever'.'
`Maybe I just don't have enough leverage,' she pondered as she pulled a pair of tweezers out of the kit. Staring at them with a thoughtful frown, she squeezed them together and stuck them through the hole on the pull. Wrapping her fingers around the tweezers, she took a deep breath and jerked.
And the zipper didn't budge.
She was very close to crying. The glinting lights of the rising morning danced off the spring, all in an effort to taunt her, she was sure. “I—want—that— -bath!” Kagome grunted as she tugged and yanked on the stubborn fastener. Almost convinced that InuYasha had somehow managed to solder the zipper closed when she was asleep, Kagome wrenched the tweezers out and heaved them as hard as she could.
`Fine,' she thought as she stood up and brushed off her knees. `If the shirt won't come off, I'll just leave it on, but I'm getting that bath . . .'
Struggling out of her bra before gathering her soaps and shampoo, Kagome peeked back over her shoulder. The forest was still silent, no hollers or shouts to indicate that InuYasha knew she was missing yet, but if she didn't hurry . . .
With that thought, she wiggled off her skirt and panties before wading into the spring and dunking herself in the warm water.
`Ugh, I feel weird,' she thought as she wrinkled her nose and tried to pull the clinging fabric away from her body. With a sigh, she tried to ignore the intrusive feel as she surfaced to lather her hair. When she stood up in the waist deep water, the brisk morning air hit the material and sent a shiver through her. Cold and clammy and not at all pleasant, she fumed the entire time. `InuYasha could have helped me . . . if he were stuck in his stupid clothes, I'd help him, even if I was uncomfortable about it . . . baka.'
It occurred to her, the trouble she'd have after her bath when she was stuck in a wet blouse that kami had seen fit to make her wear for the rest of her life. If she put something on over it, it'd be drenched, too. If she didn't, then InuYasha would definitely know where she'd been. The original intent had been to sneak away, have her bath, and leave him none the wiser. That was just not meant to be. She sighed again.
Kagome dunked herself to rinse her hair and came up sputtering. Leaning her head back to let her hair drain, she rubbed the water from her eyes just as another sound made her gasp.
Eyes flying open in instant alarm, she saw him. He stood on the shore with a dark scowl, arms crossed over his chest. She swallowed hard and opened her mouth to speak. His low growl silenced her.
`Run, Kagome . . . he's really mad,' the voice in her head told her.
She couldn't move, or maybe she just didn't want to. His gaze never left hers as he strode into the water, directly at her. When he reached her, he drew himself up taller, glared down at her. “Just what the hell do you think you're doing?” he growled, his voice rough yet quiet.
Kagome blinked but couldn't look away. “I . . . was filthy,” she murmured as a faint pink tinge crept up her skin.
He seemed to accept her answer, at least for the moment, and he nodded slowly. “And how do I know you're my wench?' he demanded.
Kagome frowned. “Your . . . yours?”
If he noticed the breathy quality of her tone, he didn't comment. “You look like my wench. You smell like my wench. How do I know you're my wench?”
`He's . . . too close . . .' Kagome thought weakly. Her reason was fast fleeing her. She grasped onto the last bit of sanity she had as she pulled the shirt away from her skin. “You . . . you could have helped me with this stupid zipper, baka. If you had, I wouldn't have sneaked away this morning.”
The glint on the water reflected back in his eyes, and Kagome forced herself to look away. “You sound like my wench,” he commented.
“S-st-stop that,” Kagome whispered.
She swallowed hard. “You know what.”
InuYasha shrugged. “I told you not to leave my sight, Kagome. If I can't tell you from that bitch, how am I supposed to protect you?”
Kagome stepped back, trying to put some space between them. “I didn't go that far,” she protected. “I just wanted a bath.”
“Far enough,” he argued. “How are you supposed to take a bath in that, anyway?”
That earned him a narrowed-eyed look. “I told you, if you had helped me, I wouldn't have this problem.”
He snorted. “Keh. Then you'd be naked,” he pointed out.
She winced at the blatant reminder of her lack of clothing and his proximity. “Well, you found me,” she hedged. “Can I finish my bath now?”
His gaze gained intensity, seared through her with no finesse at all. He stared at her breasts, and when Kagome glanced down, she gasped. The white cotton blouse was plastered to her body, molded to her like a second skin. InuYasha's eyes widened, his gaze taking on a strange glow that made Kagome's belly turn over in a very nice way. A sudden look of confusion flashed over his features, and he shook his head as he stepped back. “Move it, wench. We might as well get an early start since you're already awake.”
She shook her head. “You're here. You might as well help me out of this. I can't get the zipper open.”
He snorted but didn't look back at her. “Then cut it off.”
“Cut it off.”
“My mother bought me this blouse, you know! I can't just cut it off!”
“Then leave it on,” he grumbled.
Kagome scowled at his back. “I realize you wear the same clothes every day, but I'm not as lucky as you! My clothes don't clean or repair themselves, and I can't get the zipper down!”
“Come on, already. You've had more than enough time to finish your bath.”
“Why are you acting so weird?”
“I ain't acting weird,” he argued.
“You want to bet?” she countered. “You've acted strange, ever since the night you—” She made a face as she cut herself off, wincing inwardly at the not-so-gentle reminder of what she'd seen.
His back stiffened, and he stopped moving. Kagome bit her bottom lip as she waited for the tirade she knew was coming. Finally, he sighed, shoulders slumping as his ears flattened though he still refused to face her. “So . . . you did know . . .”
She didn't answer. His tone had caught her off-guard. She'd expected him to scream, yell at her. Instead he had uttered that quietly, sadly.
“I, uh . . . sorry.”
His chin lifted slightly as his ears perked up, just a little. “For what I . . . for that . . .” Suddenly spinning around to stare at her, his expression wary, scared, he scowled and made a self-disgusted face, and he looked as though he was struggling to find the right words. “Kagome . . . did I . . . did I do . . . anything . . . to you?”
Fighting back her rising blush as she tried not to think too hard about the topic under discussion, Kagome raised her arms to cover her chest as she waded closer to InuYasha. “No . . .” she assured him. “You didn't . . . I went downstairs to get a snack, and . . . and then I lay down on the sofa.”
He knew she left part of it out. It was in his gaze. Still she had a feeling that he also knew that she was trying to offer him a scrap of his pride, and he finally managed a tiny grin as his eyes finally locked with hers. “You're . . . you're the right wench.”
She smiled, too.
InuYasha tried not to grin as Kagome heaved a frustrated sigh and jerked on the zipper again. She really was good and stuck, and there wasn't much anyone could do about it. He'd yanked on that damn thing for nearly twenty minutes, and it hadn't budged. When he had suggested cutting it off again, she'd adamantly insisted that she wasn't going to do it. He'd lent her his haori till the shirt dried since the fire rat cloth was actually quite light.
“Want to borrow Tetsusaiga?” he asked in a carefully neutral tone.
“No, thank you,” she mumbled as she pulled so hard she grimaced.
“Got claws, too, if Tetsusaiga is too much sword for you,” he goaded.
“Baka,” she muttered under her breath. “I'll get it. I think it moved.”
InuYasha rolled his eyes and did smile this time. “You might as well give up, wench. If I couldn't get it, then what makes you think you can?”
“Some of the material got caught,” she told him. “If I could get that out of there, I could unzip it.”
He made a face. “Good, wench. Hold your breath. That'll make it work.”
Letting out her breath in a whoosh, Kagome looked up long enough to glare at InuYasha, who wisely hid his amusement. “You're such a jerk sometimes, do you know?”
He could discern the teasing note in her voice and grinned. “Well, this jerk is getting sleepy, wench. Come here and shake this, will you?” he asked as he dangled the vial from his fingertips.
She heaved a sigh and got up, slowly wandering over to him to shake the talisman. “There . . . will you try, just once more?” she asked as she watched him shake, too.
InuYasha shrugged. “Keh! It won't do any good.”
She rolled her hand impatiently. “Yeah, yeah. Just pull, okay?”
“You can't talk to me like that,” he remarked as he grasped the zipper pull and tugged. It didn't budge.
She sank down, hands resting on her knees, absolute trust, absolute belief shining in her gaze. It might only be a stupid stuck zipper, but in her mind, he could fix it. That, alone, kept him from tearing the damn bit of cotton from top to bottom. Lifting her chin so he could get a better grip on the zipper, she smiled and reached out to flick one of his ears. “Why not?” she asked quietly.
“Oi! Stop that!” he told her.
“Why can't I talk to you like that?” she countered as she flicked again.
He bent his ear away from her, ducking his head to the side as he yanked harder on the unmoving zipper pull. “Because, wench, you just can't.”
She considered that then shook her head as she flicked once more. “Nope, not good enough, InuYasha.”
He shot her a sidelong glance meant to quell her desire to bedevil his ears. She grinned. “Keh! It is good enough! Everyone knows that the lesser mate has to submit to the dominant one.”
“Oh yeah? And what `dominant mate' are you talking about?”
“Me, wench, unless you wanna start doing the hunting and the protecting?”
Her lungs whistled as she sucked in a sharp breath. Her body stilled completely as InuYasha slowly realized just what he'd said. Jerking his hands back, he turned away as he crossed his arms over his chest and tried not to blush.
“Is that . . . is that what you want, InuYasha?”
He snorted as he felt the blush rising in his skin. “Keh.”
She grabbed the hair hanging by his face and tugged gently, enough to force him to look at her. “Do you? Do you want that?”
He wrinkled his nose and tried to pull away. “Thought about it,” he allowed grudgingly.
“Just . . . thought about it?”
“Maybe . . . once . . . or twice . . .”
A slow smile spread over her face, lighting her eyes with a luminosity that amazed him. “I've thought about that, myself . . . once or twice,” she ventured quietly.
“Have you?” he asked, hoping that he didn't sound nearly as hopeful as he thought he did.
“Yeah,” she answered.
When she didn't offer any more than that, he stifled a growl. “And?”
Her smile widened. “And . . . I think I'd like it, too.”
“You . . . you would?”
“If you would.”
“I think I could tolerate you.”
She rolled her eyes. “Well, good. Nothing like knowing I'm tolerated,” she retorted.
He suddenly turned serious as he stared at her. “Kagome, if I . . . if you . . . if we did that . . . it means forever.”
“So we'd be together forever?”
InuYasha made a face. “Something like that.”
“I'd like that.”
He shook his head. “You've got to be sure.”
She smiled again as she let go of his hair to touch his cheek. “I've been sure, InuYasha. I've been sure for a very long time.”
He still looked dubious at best even though he seemed cautiously pleased. A slight shadow fell over his expression, and his eyebrows drew together as he tilted his head to the side, measuring whatever it was he wanted to say. “Uh . . . Kagome?”
She leaned forward to kiss his cheek. “Hmm?”
He grimaced. “I don't want you to think . . . it ain't to break the toxin . . .”
She grinned. “I didn't think it would be.”
The way she stared at him made him swallow hard. Gazing at him, staring at his mouth, she was mesmerized by the very breath he drew. Her hand lifted, her fingers tracing over his lips, and for a moment he had to wonder if she knew she was touching him, at all. “InuYasha . . .”
Clearing his throat nervously, he tried to redirect his mind away from Kagome, away from her touch, away from the intoxicating shift in her scent. Delicious and heady, she beckoned to him, her aura gliding over his youki with a gentle whisper, a silent caress. Forcing his gaze away, he glanced meaningfully up at the sky and heaved a frustrated sigh. “Go to bed, wench. We'll figure out how to get that damned zipper open tomorrow.”
She followed the direction of his gaze and sighed, too. `The full moon . . .' Still, she was too happy to let that daunt her. “InuYasha, will you sit with me? Until I go to sleep?”
He thought it over and shrugged before standing up and holding his hand out to help her. She ran over and lay down as InuYasha sat beside her. The low rumble seemed to wrap around her as he stroked her hair. The combination of his touch and the sound lulled her, and she smiled vaguely when she felt his lips touch her forehead as she drifted off to sleep.
== == == == == == == == == ==
Final Thought fromInuYasha:
…Damned zipper …
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.