InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Metamorphosis. ❯ Something Wicked ( Chapter 68 )

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

~~Chapter 68~~
~Something Wicked~
“Do you think she can do this?” Sango whispered to Miroku as the two stood back in the loose ring of observers that surrounded the small village. InuYasha stood beside Sango with a frown on his face as he gazed at the young miko who stood in the center of the village with her eyes closed and her hands raised level with her chest.
“It's hard to say,” Miroku mumbled back. “Even the strongest of monks cannot perform such a rite, at least on such a wide scale. It is an exhaustive process simply to purify sacred ground around temples and shrines. If Kagome were fully trained, she might be able to do it. Kaede said that if Kagome meditated well that she might be able to channel the necessary energy.”
“Keh! She'll do it.”
Sango turned to stare at InuYasha. The hanyou hadn't moved his gaze from Kagome but the determination and absolute belief in her was evident in his expression, his stance. Calm, serene, as though he didn't possess a single doubt, InuYasha didn't blink as he watched Kagome. Sango smiled.
A thin pink light bathed Kagome in its aura as a sudden crackle of spiritual power emanated from her body. Bolts of silvery lightning shot from her fingertips in every direction, extending to the perimeters of the village as her peaceful expression shifted into a little smile. The gathered villagers were silent, staring in awe as Kagome's aura spread over the ground in a thick blanket. Engulfing the village like pink snow, the power resonated with the steady beat of her heart.
“Amazing,” Miroku breathed, admiration lighting his violet eyes.
“Absolutely remarkable,” Sango agreed. Marisaiko cooed in from her comfortable sling on Sango's back.
InuYasha remained silent, eyes glowing with unmasked pride as Kagome slowly opened her eyes. Her gaze locked with his first, and her smile was for him, alone.
Glancing up at InuYasha only to find him smiling back at Kagome, a smile full of admiration and love—a smile Sango had never seen before, she tapped Miroku's arm to get his attention as the villagers who had been silent broke into excited murmurings.
“Incredible,” Miroku whispered, referring more to the hanyou than to the purification of the village. Sango nodded. “Why do you suppose he's looking at her like that?”
Before Sango could answer, Kagome hurried over and said something quietly to the hanyou. He blinked quickly and shook his head as a small flush crept up his cheeks. To her amazement, Sango watched as InuYasha leaned over and whispered something back to Kagome that made her cheeks redden enough to match his.
“Thank you so much, Kagome-sama! The villagers will rest easy tonight, and for many nights to come!” the headman said as he grasped Kagome's hands and bowed over and over.
Sango's mouth dropped open in shock as InuYasha pulled Kagome against his chest and gently but firmly pulled her hands away from the headman's grasp. Miroku gaped in unabashed awe. “Inu—” he began only to receive a sharp elbow in the ribs from his wife to silence him.
“Perhaps we should let them tell us?”
Miroku didn't look like he agreed but he finally nodded, still staring at both InuYasha and Kagome in obvious amazement. “I'm so happy for her!” Sango whispered with a contented sigh.
“I want to know what they said to each other,” Miroku complained.
Sango rolled her eyes. “It doesn't matter, does it?”
“Yes, it does,” he argued. “She made him blush. I must know what she said.”
“They'll tell us when they're ready,” Sango assured him. “Remember when you first proposed? We didn't tell them right away.”
Miroku made a face. “Ah, yes . . . we waited at least . . . half a day.”
“It's your own fault. You know how easily InuYasha gets upset about your teasing, houshi-sama,” she pointed out. “They'll tell us when they're ready.”
Heaving a long-suffering sigh, Miroku nodded as he watched Kagome whisper something else to InuYasha. The hanyou blushed again as the villagers thanked the young miko, and to the ex-monk's everlasting amazement, the prior show of jealousy continued as InuYasha kept the villagers from touching Kagome too long.
“It's a little . . . disturbing,” Miroku finally commented with a puzzled frown.
“What is?”
Miroku shrugged as he caught Marisaiko's hand and kissed her little palm. “I never thought I'd see InuYasha smile quite so openly . . . and I've got to admit, it's . . . almost frightening.”
Sango rolled her eyes. “You should be happy for them, don't you think?”
“I'm happy for them,” Miroku contradicted. “And I'll be happier when they tell us what's going on.”
Sango grinned. “You know Kagome. She'll tell us.”
“Are you implying that Kagome can't keep a secret?”
The youkai exterminator shook her head. “Never! I'm simply saying that she can't lie.”
Miroku's pondered that as a smile surfaced on his face. “Ah, my wife is as wise as she is beautiful! Exactly why I love you.”
“This is so nice,” Kagome sighed as she sank back in the warm water of the hot spring.
Sango nodded in complete agreement as she rolled her head from side to side. “I know . . .”
“I was a little tired from the purification, but this is really helping,” Kagome went on.
True enough, by the time the purification ritual was over, she had felt like collapsing. At least, she had been until she had seen InuYasha. As though some of his strength had become her own, she felt a slow resurgence of energy, a blossoming of exhilaration that had come solely from the brilliant smile he'd given her.
“I can't believe InuYasha actually held Marisaiko,” Sango added.
Kagome smiled. The baby had been lying on Kagome's bedroll fussing a little while she and Sango gathered their things for their bath. Miroku was heading over to pick her up but InuYasha was closer, and to the surprise of one and all, the hanyou had very carefully scooped up the girl and held her up to stare her in the eye like he was trying to brainwash her into being happy. Even more surprisingly, it seemed to do the trick.
Waving her hands wildly in the general direction of InuYasha's ears, the baby screamed in giddy delight as InuYasha flattened the appendages in question and winced as he quickly handed the baby to Miroku.
“I think she likes his ears,” Kagome admitted with a giggle.
“The two of you seemed very . . . close . . . today,” Sango remarked casually as she squeezed body wash onto a scrubby and started lathering her arms.
“Did we?” Kagome hedged as she grabbed her fingernail brush and scrubbed her nails.
“Yes . . . Miroku noticed it, too.”
“He did?”
“He's probably remarking on it right now.”
Kagome faltered with the brush poised above her fingernails. “You think so?”
Sango nodded slowly. “I told him not to do it since InuYasha has never taken well to teasing . . . but you know Miroku . . .”
“Uh . . . yeah . . .”
Sango shook her head and smiled sweetly at Kagome. “You'd tell us if there was anything important. I don't know what I was thinking.”
Kagome smiled weakly, feeling completely horrible as she managed a little nod. “I would,” she agreed as guilt assailed her. “Of course I would!” Hiding a grimace as she ducked under the water's surface, Kagome felt just a little worse with every passing second. If she didn't know better, she'd swear that Sango knew more than she was letting on. That was ridiculous. There was no way she could, right? She and InuYasha had been careful not to say a word . . .
Still, she hated keeping secrets from her friends. It made her feel sneaky, unworthy of her friends' trust . . .
`InuYasha and his insecurities . . . I wish he'd just tell them . . .'
“I was quite impressed with the demonstration of Kagome's powers,” Miroku mused as he and InuYasha sat on a log near the hot spring. Marisaiko babbled happily from her perch in her father's lap. Swinging her tiny fists at InuYasha as she tried to grab a handful of his hair, the hanyou leaned back in time to avoid the flailing hands.
“Keh. I knew she could do it,” InuYasha scoffed.
“It almost seems like her power has grown. Have you noticed?”
InuYasha snorted as he shrugged carelessly. “Nope.”
“So what did she say that amused you?”
InuYasha shifted his gaze to stare at Miroku out of the corner of his eye. The monk was staring at his daughter's head. Kagome's voice whispered through his mind, as her complete pleasure at having accomplished the purification of the village surrounded her in the brightest aura. `I'm glad you're here with me, InuYasha.'
“Don't remember,” he lied as the memory of her shining eyes, her happy smile brought another dusting of pink to his cheeks, just as it had earlier.
Miroku sighed. “That's a shame. I'd love to know what you said back to her, to make her blush.”
`That wasn't half bad, wench.'
InuYasha snorted again. “Don't remember that, either.”
“Have it your way, InuYasha,” Miroku gave in gracefully. “I won't badger it out of you.”
“Well, that's a miracle,” InuYasha grumbled.
Miroku chuckled. “Of course, that isn't to say that your brilliant display of jealousy wasn't observed. It was. Sango and I both found it . . . refreshing.”
“What jealousy?” InuYasha growled. “I wasn't jealous!”
“So you didn't pull Kagome away from the headman? Or the other villagers when they held on to her hands a little longer than necessary?”
InuYasha could feel his face reddening. “Keh! You're delusional!”
Miroku relented, obviously realizing he wasn't making any headway in his efforts to get InuYasha to tell him what was really going on. “I apologize, InuYasha.”
He didn't reply as he glared toward the sound of splashing water.
“Did you ever tell Kagome whatever it was you were keeping from her?”
InuYasha grimaced at the reminder. “It ain't important,” he growled as he shot to his feet to stomp away.
Miroku's laughter trailed in his wake as InuYasha leaped into the trees. `Let the monk have his fun,' InuYasha thought with a snort. `Damn lecher . . . I'll get him back . . . when he's least expecting it . . .'
Kagome leaned back against the base of Goshinboku and gazed at the sunlight filtering through the tree branches. InuYasha hopped down and hunkered beside her, sat on his haunches, hands on the ground between his spread knees. She grinned. When he sat that way, she couldn't help but remember that he really was half dog-youkai.
“Sango suspects something,” Kagome remarked quietly as she continued to stare at the trees.
“So does that pervert,” InuYasha admitted grudgingly.
Kagome shrugged. “Would it really be so bad, to tell them?”
“Yes,” InuYasha maintained. “That damned monk won't leave it alone.”
She shook her head but smiled as she straightened up and turned to face him. “So . . . do you want to leave tomorrow?”
“Where to?”
She blinked at him, trying to decide if he was being serious or not. Deciding that he probably was, she sighed then grinned at his incorrigibility. “To find Hisadaicho . . . you can defeat her now, right? You've got to, before Kouga finds her. Even if they aren't really mates . . . it just seems . . . wrong for him to kill her.”
“Keh! Idiotic mangy wolf. He mated her! Baka.”
Kagome blushed as she shook her head. “But he didn't think it was her,” she forced herself to say. “He thought she was—”
“Don't even fucking say it,” InuYasha growled as all traces of his amusement over the situation evaporated.
“Well, it's not like I'm happy about that,” she argued. “I didn't want to be—-I just didn't.” She sighed and dropped her hands over his. “I wanted to be with you, baka. Don't you know that?”
He wrinkled his nose but didn't pull away from her. “. . . Maybe,” he allowed grudgingly.
Kagome smiled. “And maybe you wanted to be with me?”
He snorted. “. . . Maybe.”
She scooted a little closer, her knees brushing against his as she sat up straight. “And . . . maybe . . . we could . . . be alone . . . for a little while?”
He blinked in surprise at her question, his expression wary, as though he didn't dare believe what he thought she meant. “. . . Why?”
She didn't answer out loud. With a shy smile, she reached up, gently stroked his ear.
InuYasha sat back as his eyes flared wide with unspoken understanding. Kagome's smile widened as he gulped, as a bright flush blossomed in his cheeks. “O-o-oh,” he stammered.
She giggled and leaned forward to kiss his cheek. He turned his face to intercept her lips, uttering a low growl as she continued to stroke his ear. The feel of her fingers mingled with the sensation of her lips on his as her aura crackled in his ears, as her scent tingled in his nostrils. So easy to lose himself in her, so simple just to love her . . .
All his senses centered around her as everything else faded away. Kagome was the bright center of his world, and his world was a beautiful place. Unsure when he'd first realized that, he couldn't name the single moment when he'd known. The flutter of her lips under his was dewy, soft, sweet even as the darker sensation of the familiar ache spun around him. Kagome glowed brightly in his mind, his shooting star, the star that had fallen to the earth only to be reborn in her.
He leaned toward her as her hand clutched his. She sighed softly as her other hand fell away from his ear, grasp his fingers as she braced her arms, as she rose up to press her lips more firmly against his. Her fragrance shifted and flowed, followed on the invisible wings of her gentle aura, twined in his hair, stroked his skin in feathers and whispers.
Her lips opened to him as a shiver rippled through her. Her soft sigh was a balm on his soul as her hands tightened around his fingers. She scooted closer, her knees touching his inner thighs as she sought to close the distance between them without moving her hands away from his. The contact was enough to send waves of flames through his body, culminating in a painful pressure, a haunting ache.
The intensity of the feelings she inspired was consuming, driven. A wealth of sensation surged inside him, a torrent of tactile emotion wrapped so tightly around him that he couldn't think, couldn't move, couldn't breathe. Her tongue flitted against his, a web of need tangling with a primordial burn. She possessed his mind as his youkai blood raced, as the collision between humanity and youkai were blurred.
He could hear the path of their mingled blood racing through her body as the strained control he possessed over his own emotions weakened. Hanging on by a silvery strand, the remnants of his will reacted to her. In the single press of her lips to his, in the dizzying feel of her deepened kisses, innocence fell away as a burgeoning hunger spiraled out, flowed through him and into her. She was everything he could never be, and yet she still believed in him.
InuYasha growled at the intrusion of the female voice that cut through his idyll like the sound of shattering glass.
Kagome didn't appear to have heard Sango calling her name. She whimpered when InuYasha jerked back with a mutinous scowl on his face. “InuYasha?”
“Damn it,” he grumbled as Sango's voice drifted to them again.
Kagome sighed and tried to smile. “If you'd tell them . . .” she began slowly.
He shook his head and snorted. “Keh! Just get rid of her.”
Kagome rolled her eyes. “I can't do that! What if it's important?”
InuYasha's glare should have told Kagome just what he thought was more important at the moment. The miko giggled and stood up, smoothing her skirt before she dashed to intercept her friend.
Peeking over his shoulder as Kagome ran off, he grimaced and cracked his knuckles just before his ears drooped and he sighed. `She's right, you know. If you'd just tell the others, they might leave the two of you alone more . . . and if not, then you could always threaten them a little. Either way you'd be able to spend more time alone with Kagome . . .'
He groaned as scenarios flashed through his head, of that damn Miroku teasing the hell out of him. `Keh! He'd never let it go, then I'd have to kill him, and then Sango would be pissed off . . . and Sango's a little . . . scary . . . when she's mad . . .' He snorted. `She wouldn't be half as scary, though, if she didn't have that gigant-ass boomerang . . .'
“InuYasha! Kaede wants to talk to me!” Kagome called back with a jaunty wave. “I'll be right back, okay?”
“Whatever,” he scoffed as he shifted his position enough to rid himself of at least a modicum of his current discomfort. It didn't help much. With a sigh, he watched as Kagome and Sango disappeared into the trees that lined the forest path. `Cursed, damn it! I knew it! Someone cursed me, and when I figure out who, I'll fucking shred them . . . Probably that lecher. He's got the spiritual power to do it. He's probably hiding nearby, laughing his ass off . . .'
Staring around at the empty forest, InuYasha gazed at Kagome's backpack. `Great! Now I'm her fucking watch dog,' he fumed as he grabbed the bag and dragged it closer. `Wonder if she's got ramen in here?'
Digging through the bag was always an interesting endeavor. Kagome seemed to enjoy bringing things along that baffled him. Since she didn't carry school books anymore, the bag was much lighter than it used to be. He tugged a magazine loose and tilted his head as he frowned at the cover. `101 Beauty Secrets of the Stars, Revealed!'
InuYasha snorted. `The stars? Stars can't talk . . . beauty secrets? Huh?'
He read the next headline: `Poll's Closed! Your 15 Hottest Hunks!'
InuYasha's face contorted in complete confusion. `Hottest hunks of what?'
He shook his head. `Weird . . .' Bright orange lettering caught his attention next. His scowl melted into wide-eyed shock as he read that line. `Talking sex with Sue Johanson: Straight Up Ways To Drive Your Man Wild In Bed From Canada's Foremost Sexual Educator!'
`Wh-wh-what?' He dropped the magazine as though it had grown teeth and bit him. `What the fuck is Kagome reading?'
Glaring at the offending paper, he snorted. `Keh!'
The longer he stared at the magazine, the more his curiosity was pricked. `Sex? Is that like . . . mating? What . . . straight up ways? Like what?'
Slowly he sniffed the air. He didn't smell anything out of the ordinary. `So . . . no one would know if I looked, right?' He made a face as he cautiously reached for the magazine. `Right.'
`Besides,' he thought defensively, `if Kagome's read this, then that gives her the upper hand . . . sneaky wench . . . Didn't think she had it in her . . .'
Navigating the magazine was harder than he expected. The article that he was searching for wasn't in the first few pages. In fact, there was nothing but weird pictures on them, like commercials on paper. At least he knew what those were. He'd watched enough television in Kagome's time to know. Still, finding the aforementioned man-maddening article was proving frustrating, and he growled in irritation as he leafed through the magazine.
“InuYasha? What are you doing?”
A sound suspiciously close to a `yip' escaped him as he shoved the magazine back into Kagome's bag and kicked the backpack away. Shooting to his feet as he whirled around to face a very amused-looking miko, he couldn't help the wave of hot color that exploded on his face. “N-n-nothing!” he yelled. “Keh! Don't do that, wench!”
“Do what?” she asked innocently, clasping her hands behind her back.
“Sneak up on me!”
“I didn't sneak,” she countered with a shake of her head.
“I thought you had to talk to Kaede.”
She shrugged. “I needed my bag.”
“Your bag?”
“Yeah, my bag—the one you just kicked.”
He made a face. “Oh. I was, uh . . . looking for ninja food.”
She looked like she was struggling not to laugh which only served to darken his flush. “Did you find any?”
He snorted. “Keh. Why do you think I kicked it?”
She did giggle at that and stepped over to retrieve her bag. After picking up the few things that had fallen out when he kicked it, she closed up the bag and slung it over her shoulder. “All right, it won't take too long. Will you still be here when I'm done?”
He shrugged as he jammed his arms together in his sleeves. “Maybe. I'll find you, don't worry.”
“Okay,” she agreed as she started past him again, tweaking his ear in passing. He caught her hand. “Wench! I thought I told you not to do that!” he grouched as her touch shot through him.
She grinned. “But you like it, don't you?”
He blinked in surprise at the huskiness in her voice, a tone he'd never heard before. “Well . . . maybe.”
She turned toward him, placing her hand on his chest, over his heart, as she smiled at him. Staring into her eyes had the same effect on him as kissing her. His mind dissolved as incoherence took over, as instinct shoved aside reason. The shock of her hand against his skin as she slipped it inside his undershirt wrenched a low groan from him as he stood still, mesmerized by the secretive shine in the depths of her gaze. Her knuckles grazed over his chest as her hand wrapped around the talisman. He didn't think to question it.
“K-Kaede,” he mumbled, hating to remind her yet knowing that if he didn't, she would be missed. The last thing he wanted was for the others to find them again.
She sighed and let her hand drop away, shaking her head slowly as she stepped back. “You ruin the best ideas, InuYasha, did you know?”
The loss of the comfort of having her near was a painful thing. InuYasha stifled a sigh and shrugged. “Then hurry it up, will you?”
With a sigh of her own, she reshouldered the bag and turned to go. “All right,” she told him. “I'll be right back!”
He waited until she was out of sight before bounding into the lower branches of Goshinboku wishing that he had thought to stash the magazine in his haori. At least he could have found that stupid article . . .
`Maybe we should go . . . somewhere. Hell, anywhere would be better than staying here, waiting for Sango or Miroku or some else to interfere. They're like vermin. I can't fucking get rid of a single one of them!' Digging his claws into the branch, InuYasha stifled a sigh. `It's the wench's fault. She's too nice to tell them all to go to hell for one afternoon, even for me.'
That was the trouble, wasn't it? She did most of the things she did, because she was too nice, too kind, too compassionate. He did sigh this time. Weren't those the very reasons that he loved her?
Settling back against the tree trunk, he propped his foot on the branch and let out a deep breath just before he yawned wide, ears flattening as his mouth expanded, as his eyes squeezed closed. He hadn't gotten much sleep the night before. A nap might do him some good, since there wasn't anything else he could do while he waited.
Dragging the vial out of his undershirt, InuYasha shook it and stowed it away again then wrinkled his nose as the unsettling scent of his blood and Kagome's singed his nostrils. Staring down at his hand with a marked frown, InuYasha lifted his fingers. A small smear of blood on his hand? Where did that come from?
He hopped down out of the tree and shook his head. He'd have known if she had been injured, and he knew he hadn't been. Staring around the forest with a suspicious frown as the stirrings of comprehension slowly seeped over him, InuYasha made a face. `No . . . that can't have . . . ?'
“InuYasha, sometimes I think you pout a little too much.”
InuYasha snapped out of his reverie as Kagome stomped toward him with her bag slung over her shoulder. “What's wrong with you?”
“What do you think?”
He snorted. “Keh! If I knew, would I be asking?”
She glared up at him and poked her index finger into his chest as her glare darkened. “That was just mean, you know.”
“Mean?” he echoed as he stepped back out of poking distance. “Keh! I didn't do a damn thing, wench!”
“You did,” she countered. “I'm sorry I had to go see Kaede, but did you really have to leave my bag in the middle of the path?”
He blinked suddenly as his suspicion solidified. “You came and got it,” he argued.
She rolled her eyes. “I did not. I went to see Kaede, and when I was coming back, I found my bag in the middle of the forest with no dog-boy in sight!”
“Keh! That's because `dog-boy' was busy here . . . but if it wasn't you, then who . . . ?”
Her eyes widened suddenly as his words registered in her mind. “Hisadaicho?” The shock wore off quickly only to be replaced by an accusing stare as she crossed her arms over her chest. “If you kissed her, InuYasha, I swear, I'll—”
“Keh! As if! And that's hardly important, anyway, don't you think?”
“What did she want?”
He rolled his eyes. “Your bag, wench!”
“If she wanted my bag, why did she leave it in the middle of the forest?”
He made a face. “Keh! How should I know? Maybe there was something in it she wanted!”
“Like what?” she countered.
“Like the Shikon no Tama!” InuYasha snarled.
“But that isn't in the bag!”
“I know that!”
“Then why did you suggest it?” she asked, her tone completely exasperated.
“Because she might not have known that!”
Kagome opened her mouth to argue with him then snapped it closed as indignant color blossomed in her cheeks, as her miko aura fizzled with her rising irritation. A sudden thought crossed her mind as her eyes narrowed, as her mouth snapped closed. She spared a moment to regard InuYasha carefully, as though she had realized there was something he wasn't telling her. “InuYasha . . .” she began in a deadly quiet voice, “why didn't you know it was Hisadaicho and not me?”
He blanched at her controlled tone, at the apprehension in her voice. “Uh . . .”
She rounded on him, fire igniting in her gaze as she stalked toward him. He retreated. “We broke the toxin, didn't we? That should mean she didn't look like me, right?”
“Uh . . .”
“InuYasha . . . is there something you need to tell me?”
He flattened his ears and tried not to wince. “It . . . uh . . . th-th-the toxin ain't gone?”
Kagome gasped when he confirmed her suspicion. “Oh, kami!” Grasping her forehead in her fingers, Kagome groaned and rubbed her temples hard. “It isn't a question, InuYasha! Either we broke it or we didn't!”
“All right,” he agreed, his voice rising defensively, “we didn't!”
“How could we not? We did . . . that!
InuYasha refused to comment, screwing his face up into `The Pout' as he stubbornly looked away.
“Baka!” she shrieked, her voice echoing off the trees. “Then why didn't it work?”
“How the fuck should I know?” he bellowed back.
“Because they're your stupid dreams!”
“Well, you were in them!”
“Because you put me in them! Now what didn't we do?”
“I don't know!”
“You don't know or you won't say?”
He made a face. “Fine, I ain't saying!”
Kagome balled her hands into fists at her sides. “You jerk! You dragged me into your hentai dreams! The least you can do is tell me what we were doing!”
“Keh! Not on your life!”
InuYasha watched in stunned silence as Kagome whirled around on her heel and stomped back into the forest. “Oi! Where are you going!” he called after her as his feet finally agreed to move.
Kagome's pace didn't falter as she stormed away. “I'm going back to the village, baka, and I'm not talking to you again, ever, until you tell me the rest of what you're keeping from me!”
He watched her for a moment before darting after her. `Not talking to me, huh? Keh! I should be so fucking lucky!'
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Gigant-ass is not a typo… it is one of those weird slang words we use around here… lol
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Final Thought from Kagome:
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.