InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Purity 9: Subterfuge ❯ Graying ( Chapter 46 )

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

-OoOoOo OoOoOoOoOoOoO-

'Some children died the other day
We fed machines and then we prayed
Puked up and down in morbid faith
You should have seen the ratings that day …'

-'The Nobodies' by Marilyn Manson.


"I told you, woman, it isn't that bad."

"Shut up, Roka.  My hands are already shaking enough, as it is."

Heaving a sigh designed to let Valerie know exactly what he thought of her attempts at cleaning his wounds, Evan shot her what should have been a rather formidable scowl—if she had deigned to notice it.  She didn't.  Too busy gnawing on her bottom lip as she carefully, gently dabbed at the torn flesh that was already healing nicely, she let out a deep, quivering breath and slowly shook her head.  "Thank God that this wasn't worse," she muttered.

Evan sucked in a sharp hiss of air when she dabbed a little Medi-Ready onto the torn skin.  "Shit burns, V," he complained.

"Sorry," she said with a flinch.  "You're lucky this wasn't worse."

"Yeah," he intoned, his gaze taking on a far-away sort of glimmer.  'Worse?  Sure . . . like Deet . . .'

The startlingly vivid image of Dieter's chest—the tangled and torn cords of flesh that had glistened like some kind of grisly glitter flashed through his head, the writhing tissue that tried in vain to repair itself . . .

"All done," she said in a falsely bright tone as she reached for a clean roll of gauze.  "I'll just wrap you up, okay?"

"Uh, y-yeah," he agreed, brushing away the memory as best he could.  "Thanks, V."

"Here, hold this," she replied, placing his hand over the cotton pads that she'd pulled out to replace the ones that he had been using.

He did as he was told, almost smiling as she bent her head to fiddle with the end of the gauze.  Sunlight filtered through the wall of windows, spilling over her, tangling in her hair, adding a reddish-gold sheen to her glossy brown locks.  "Miss said that Daniel . . . He didn't really understand," he admitted quietly—brokenly.  "How could he?  I mean . . . He's just a pup . . ."

She shot him a rueful smile as she unrolled the end of the gauze.  "You're the only person I've ever heard call children 'pups'," she remarked.

"It's a family thing," he said with a shrug, moving his fingers to hold down the end of the roll.

"Is Miss all right?"

Evan sighed, lifting his other arm so that she could wrap the gauze around him.  "Fuck . . . 'Course she isn't."

Valerie sighed, too.  "I didn't figure," she allowed.  "If there's anything I can do . . ."

"The only thing that could help her," he said with a shake of his head, "is bringing Dieter back."

Letting out a deep breath, Valerie nodded, her eyes darkened with emotion that she just couldn't quite seem to put into words.  He understood, didn't he?  After all, he, more than anyone, knew what it would ultimately mean . . .

"Do you think she'd do something . . . bad?" she ventured quietly, carefully—sadly.

Evan shook his head then shrugged as he reached for the nondescript white button down shirt that he'd picked up at some point earlier in the day while he was out, checking up on Miss.  "No . . . No . . . I don't . . ." He grimaced.  "I don't know."

He could feel her gaze on him, intense and probing.  He had a feeling that he knew what she was going to say, and as much as he didn't want to hear it, he simply couldn't quite bring himself to argue with her, either.  "It's not your fault, Evan," she said.

"V . . ."

Grasping his face in her hands when he tried to look away, she stubbornly forced him to look at her.  "It's not.  Dieter pushed you out of the way, right?  Do you know why?  Huh?"

He sighed but didn't answer.

"He did it because you're his friend, Evan.  He did it because . . ." Trailing off for a moment, she licked her lips as the stinging salt of fresh tears—tears she refused to let fall—glossed over the brilliance of her gaze.  "He did it because he felt compelled to," she finished in a whisper: a ragged whisper.

"I know that," he argued, shaking his head and pulling away from her.  He needed the distance, didn't he?  He just wasn't ready to accept her attempts to comfort him, to make everything go away . . . "I know it, but it doesn't matter.  Dieter's dead, and I . . . I'm not . . ."

She seemed to understand though he could tell that she didn't want to let it go.  He heard the soft shuffling as she gathered up the things she'd used to clean his chest wound.  He didn't delude himself into thinking that she was going to let it drop altogether.  He knew her better than that.  Still, even a brief reprieve . . .

That was all right, wasn't it . . .?


"Denning. "

"Hi, Ms. Denning—Valerie.  I just thought I'd check in on you and see how Mr. Roka's doing," Xavier Bainey's voice greeted her when she answered her cell phone.

Casting a quick glance over her shoulder, Valerie bit her lip, watching in silence as Evan roamed listlessly, shying away from the windows as though he were afraid that he would be seen.  "He's doing all right," she said, telling herself that she wasn't lying completely.  Physically, he was all right, wasn't he?  He'd been grazed by two bullets: once on his upper arm—that one wasn't bad, little more than a slight redness of his skin, and the other on his chest, and while that one looked a little more severe, it was healing well—almost startlingly well, really . . .

"Good, good . . . Glad to hear it, of course.  Have you heard anything from the police?"

Rubbing her forehead, Valerie glanced at Evan again.  He just wasn't listening at all, and she supposed that was fine.  Did he really need to hear about the investigation at the moment?  She didn't really think so . . . "Not yet.  I talked to them an hour or so ago, and they said they were checking into a couple leads, though.  They said that they would give me a call as soon as they finished up."

Xavier cleared his throat a little uncomfortably.  "All right, then.  Give me a call if you need anything—anything at all."

"Sure, Mr. Bainey . . . Thanks."

Hanging up the phone, she rubbed her eyes and blew out her cheeks, tamping down the acute irritation that she couldn't ignore.  The only thing that Xavier Bainey cared about was the fact that the firm was soaking Evan for a hell of a lot of money for her representation.  He certainly wouldn't have been calling if Evan wasn't her client.

She drew a deep breath.  All right, so that wasn't entirely fair.  Xavier probably was concerned on some level, sure, and it would have been weird if he hadn't called to ask about Evan.  Still . . .

And then, too, Marvin had called earlier, as well.  He'd heard about the shooting on the news, it seemed, and he'd been concerned . . .

"Hey, Val . . . Is everything all right?  They were saying on the news that Zel Roka was shot . . ." he'd said in lieu of a proper greeting.

"Oh . . . yes . . . but he's all right.  His friend was killed, though," she said.

Marvin clucked his tongue.  "What a mess.  That's terrible!"

Glancing over her shoulder toward the bedroom—Evan had gone to check on Miss and hadn't gotten back yet—she sighed, rubbing her forehead and wondering why she felt about a hundred years old.  "He's dealing with it," she asserted.  "As much as he can, anyway . . ."

Marvin let out a deep breath.  She could hear him, drumming his fingers on a table in the background.  "At least he has someone like you there," he insisted.  "I know you'll be good to him, Val."

She smiled ruefully and rubbed the back of her neck.  "I'm trying," she said.  A shadow moved in the bedroom down the hall, and Valerie shook her head.  "Listen, Marvin, I think he's back, so I'm going to go.  Thanks for calling."

"No problem," he said.  "I'm really sorry about his loss."

"Sure.  I'll tell him . . ."

Valerie sighed.  As wrecked as her nerves were, weren't Evan's much, much worse?  Making a face, she shook her head, crossing her arms over her chest as she slowly stared at him.  She just wanted to help him . . . but how?

Lingering near the windows, Evan seemed to be lost in a world of his own making.  Not surprising, all things considered, but it did worry her, just a little bit.  He was so far removed from the man she'd come to know, and the changes, while understandable, were frightening.  All she could do was hope that he would eventually come out of it; that he would be able to deal with the things that he simply couldn't handle at the moment.

As much as she wanted to help him, she didn't know how to do it.  She'd never had to deal with anything like Dieter's death, and whatever she thought of that she wanted to say just didn't seem to be nearly enough.  It all sounded trite and cliché in her own head, well before they ever came out of her mouth, and while she could understand Mike and even Bone's concern—they'd both called a few times—she had to allow that Evan's needs came first, and he didn't want to speak with either of them, not yet.  She figured that was all right.  She knew well enough that he'd do it eventually.

"Hey . . . are you hungry?" she asked, knowing what his answer was going to be but forcing herself to ask, anyway.

"No," he replied, "but thanks, V."

"You really ought to eat something," she chided gently.

"Bas is supposed to stop by later," he remarked, abruptly changing the topic.  "That's, uh . . . It's all right, isn't it?"

"Of course it is," she told him, crossing her arms over her chest and wandering over to stand beside him.  "Evan . . ."

Her cell phone interrupted what she'd wanted to say, and with a last, lingering stare, she turned to retrieve the device.   "Denning," she answered.

"Afternoon, Ms. Denning.  I wanted to give you an update about your client's case."

"Good," she said, casting Evan a surreptitious glance.  "Have you found out something else?"

The chief heaved a tired sigh and covered the receiver so that he could bark out an order to someone in the background.  "Sorry about that," he muttered a moment later.  "We found the guy—Ray Buttermore.  He's the one that shot Mr. Roka and Mr. Reichardt.  My men found his body in his apartment in Yonkers along with a note."

"His body?" she repeated with a shake of her head.  "You mean, he's dead?"

"Suicide," the chief went on rather matter-of-factly.  "Seems his wife ditched him about twelve years ago, just after the birth of their only child, Bobby.  About a year ago, Bobby was diagnosed with leukemia, and he was being treated at the Dominique Ray Center.  He died last week—complications from pneumonia, and Mr. Buttermore apparently lost it.  The note alleges that he wanted to hurt 'them'—we're figurin' that he meant the hospital—but that he never meant to shoot Mr. Roka or Mr. Reichardt.  He said he couldn't deal with it anymore, and he shot himself . . . and if it's worth anything at all, he apologized to both of them in the context of the note."

Valerie pursed her lips.  "Yes, well, I don't think that it'll help, but I'll pass that information along."

"It's pretty cut and dried.  We still need to interview Mr. Roka, though, just for the official record.  You understand."

She nodded, though she wasn't entirely certain that Evan would 'understand' or even comply without some serious impetus of one kind or another.  "Mr. Reichardt's memorial is in a couple days," Valerie explained quietly.  "Surely it can wait until after all of that."

"No rush, no rush," the chief hurried to say.  "There is a question regarding Mr. Reichardt's body, but since there won't be any charges filed, it shouldn't be a big deal."

"Mr. Roka indicated that Mr. Reichardt's family didn't believe in desecrating a mortal body by conducting autopsies, and that he was cremated, as per their instructions.  I think that you should direct your questions about that to his family's legal counsel, not Mr. Roka.  He had nothing to do with their choice in the matter."

There was a very pregnant pause on the other end of the line.  Valerie supposed that the police chief didn't like what she was telling him.  Too bad.  As far as she was concerned, Evan had already been through enough, and she didn't even try to delude herself into thinking that he wasn't going to be comforted by the idea that the man had already taken his own life, either . . .

"Be that as it may, Ms. Denning, we still need to talk to him."

"Absolutely," she replied.  "Thank you for calling."

"They find out anything?" Evan demanded before Valerie could snap the phone closed.

Letting out a deep breath, she slowly nodded.  "They did," she allowed with a little shrug.  "The man—Ray Buttermore, they said his name was . . . He . . . He killed himself."

She waited breathlessly for a moment, trying to decide if he was going to blow up or not.  "Oh, did he?" Evan parried, his voice flat, anger tingeing the careful intonation.  "Isn't that convenient."

"They said that he went down there after his son died at the clinic.  He . . . He apparently wanted to kill the doctors that he thought were responsible . . ." Glancing at him to gauge his reaction, she bit her lip before going on.  His expression was completely blank, save for the tell-tale ticking in his jaw.  "They said that he wasn't targeting you or Dieter; that when his son died, he . . . He lost it."

"Is that right?" Evan mused, the incredulity in his voice a painful thing.  "Tell me, V . . . is that supposed to make me feel better?  He wasn't targeting us . . .?  Is that some sort of fucking joke?"

Wincing at the vindictiveness in Evan's tone, Valerie shook her head.  "I wasn't trying to make you feel better," she explained quietly, hesitantly.  "Evan . . ."

He waved a hand to silence her, pacing the floor like a caged animal.  "I know; you were just relaying what the cops said.  I got it."  Digging his hands into his hair, he hunched over slightly, the rage inside him flowing from his body in wave after noxious wave.  "Son of a bitch!" he exploded, letting go of his head, swiping his arm over the tabletop, sending everything crashing to the floor.  "He lost his pup so he takes another one's father?  Someone else's son?  He was angry, so he shot Deet—shot me—and all the fucking cops say is that he lost his goddamn mind?  Case closed, ladies and gentlemen!  Let's chalk another one up for the fucking peanut gallery!"

Staring in horror at the shattered remains of the cream colored Landstrom lamp that she'd so carefully picked out just after she'd bought her apartment, Valerie remained silent, unsure what she could possibly say or do to calm him down before he ended up completely undone.  As much as she might want to try to reason with him, it wouldn't work, and she knew it.  Moreover, she couldn't rightfully say that she disagreed with him, either.  The injustice of it seemed far too vast, far too unyielding, to even begin to try to comprehend.

"Daniel doesn't even realize that his father's not coming home . . . Miss is falling apart at the seams . . . and I can't even close my damn eyes without seeing it over and over and over again . . ." Uttering a low growl, he looked like he wanted to smash something—anything . . .

"Too much of a coward to deal with what he'd done.  Is that right?"

Valerie gasped and whipped around, only to come face to face with Bas Zelig as he strode from the direction of the bedroom.  He must've come in through the window, and while Valerie could understand the desire not to deal with the reporters that were still camped outside on the street, she had to wonder just why that family seemed to have an affinity for the unorthodox.

"Valerie," he said with a curt nod as he strode over to Evan and draped his hands on his hips.

Valerie opened her mouth to respond but stopped short, the word dying on her tongue as she stared at the huge sword, strapped around Bas' waist.  And just why did she have a feeling that it wasn't just for show . . .?

A very distinct shiver raced up her spine, and Valerie shook her head as she rubbed her arms and stood back.

"Something like that," Evan growled, tossing a discordant glance at his brother.

"Gunnar's still checking into it," Bas continued.  "I'm going to hang around until he says it's all clear, so stay away from your house until I tell you otherwise.  Got that?"

Evan nodded, the irritation on his face growing steadily more pronounced though he didn't try to gainsay his brother.  "Yeah, what the hell ever."

For a split second, Valerie actually thought that the older brother was going to hit him.  He heaved a sigh, though, and shook his head again.  "Do me a favor, will you?"


Bas started back down the hallway, pausing just outside her bedroom doorway.  "Call Mom.  She's worried about you."

He didn't have a flippant response for that, and Valerie wasn't surprised to see the slight grimace that crossed his features, either.  Stomping over, he flopped into a chair, still resembling a caged animal, but no longer a rabid one.

"Does your whole family have a thing for windows?" she tried to tease, barely managing a wan, half-smile for Evan's benefit.

"Bubby's been watching you since the shooting to make sure that no one came after you—assuming they were after me, of course—which he apparently wasn't," he muttered.

She frowned, settling on the edge of the sofa.  "Why would your brother have done that?"

He shot her a glance that stated quite plainly that she really ought to have known the answer to that.  "You think that he wouldn't?  If someone wanted to get to me, what better way than to get his hands on my attorney?" Evan retorted.

Valerie shook her head.  "Don't be silly, Evan," she reprimanded.  "I'm just your attorney, nothing special.  It'd make more sense for someone to go after your friends—Maddy or Bitches or Bugs or D—" Snapping her mouth closed, she could have kicked herself for the name that she'd almost spouted.  Clearing her throat, she tried not to fidget when his head snapped to the side, his gaze darkening by degrees.  "—or Bone . . ." she added on lamely.

He had to have known what she'd been about to say.  He chose to ignore it, though.  "Thought you said you were my friend, too," he murmured.

Valerie managed a weak little smile.  "I am," she agreed, leaning forward, clasping his knee and giving a gentle squeeze.  "I tell you what: how about I make dinner for you?  I know, you're not hungry, but you really need to eat something."

He forced a weary smile that didn't reach his gaze.  "All right," he mumbled then grimaced when he caught sight of the mess he'd made.  "Uh, let me know how much I owe you for the lamp," he offered.

She stood up and fluttered her fingers over her shoulder as she moved off toward the kitchen.  "Don't worry about it, Evan," she replied.  "The lamp can wait."


'Why does she feel so . . . distant?'

Evan scowled as he watched Valerie putter around the open kitchen.  No, it wasn't distance, was it?  More like . . . she was being overly cautious . . .

Trouble was, he had no idea how to breech it.  Hell, his brain hurt too much to even try to reason it all out. Just a couple days ago, he had no worries, no fear, no regrets, and now . . .?

Now he had no idea just what he was, just what he had become.

Yet after everything that he'd been through in the last couple days, just why was it that Valerie's mere presence could settle the edges of his frazzled nerves, offering him a comfort that he really didn't deserve?  She'd said that Dieter's death wasn't his fault, and he knew that, maybe.  Then again, maybe he really didn't.  It didn't do any good to blame himself, no, but he couldn't help it, either.

'V . . .'

She glanced up at him and smiled: a pathetic little thing that spoke from her heart, just the same.  As though she knew damn well, what was going through his head, it was enough, wasn't it?  'Enough . . .'

Valerie . . .

"Lookee!  Lookee what my daddy brunged me!"

Evan tried to smile; he really did as Daniel tore toward him, holding out a shiny, white ambulance—a silent and somewhat morbid testimony to Dieter's predilection for death.  "Oh, yeah?  That's . . . That's cool . . ."

Daniel bounced up and down on the balls of his feet.  "When Daddy gets home, he'll play cars with me 'cause he said so."

"I . . . I-I bet he will," Evan stammered, unable to correct the unshakable belief.

Miss choked back a sob and hurried out of the living room.  Later on, she'd told him that Daniel just didn't understand; that she'd explained it to him a few times, and every time she tried, Daniel nodded and said, "Okay," but then he'd go back and start playing once more . . .

A moment before the door slammed open, Evan could feel her presence.  Enough to jerk him out of the memory that he couldn't shake, Evan glanced up, blinking a few times as the blur of motion and the overwhelmingly familiar scent assailed him.

"Evan!" Madison half-sobbed, half-whimpered as she threw herself into his arms.  "Oh, God . . . I came as soon as I heard . . ."

"Maddy . . ."

The salt in her tears tingled in his nostrils, bringing a sudden sting to his eyelids, accompanied by the hot and grainy pangs, the insufferable knowledge that those same tears were just beyond his grasp.

"I'm sorry, Evan—so sorry . . ." she blubbered.

In the distance, he heard the soft click as Valerie closed the door.  "I'll make some tea," she offered.  Evan shot her a grateful glance.  She didn't see it as she hurried back into the kitchenette, and he sighed.  She felt like a fifth wheel, didn't she?  That wasn't at all how Evan saw her, but at the moment, there wasn't much he could do about it, either.

"Shh, Maddikins . . . It's all right," he heard himself saying.  Strange, wasn't it?  Somehow, he'd become the one to lend comfort . . .

"I wanted to go see Miss, but I didn't know what to say," Madison confessed.  "I . . . I mean, Dieter . . . oh, God . . ."

Drawing a deep breath, Evan nodded, pushing Madison back just enough to smooth her chair out of her face.  Mascara streaking her pale cheeks, her nose red and shining, with a misery etched so deeply into her youki that it stung, she looked so very different from the highly polished, glossy woman she'd become, and in that instant, he saw the same flashes—the moments of goofing off that the three of them had shared over the years . . . The same laughs and pranks . . . The times of anger . . . and he knew that Madison was remembering them, too . . .

"Don't cry, Maddy," he said, unable to raise his voice above a whisper.  "Deet would have hated that."

She sniffled and tried to choke back her tears.  "I know," she squeaked, wiping her eyes with the back of her hand.  "He'd say I was a pussy."

"I'm glad you're here."

She dragged in a stunted breath.  "I got on the first plane out," she said.  "How is she?  Miss?"

Evan shook his head.  "So far, she's all right . . ."

"You're . . . sure . . .?"

"I'm sure," he assured her.  "Deet never . . . He never did it."  He could hear the hint of skepticism in her voice, and he nodded slowly, offering her a meaningful look.  She didn't know, he supposed, but he did.  Dieter hadn't gotten around to marking Miss though he'd meant to soon.  At the time, Evan had worried that Dieter was being lax in making sure that she was protected since she was human, but now . . .

Now he had to think that maybe, if Miss stood a chance of surviving the loss of her mate, it would have to be because he hadn't done that . . .

It had been explained to him a long time ago.  Kichiro had told him how it worked, at least in theory.  It seemed that when a youkai or hanyou claimed a human mate, the physical changes in the human's body was more significant than if the same was done with two youkai.  The youkai or hanyou blood was dominant over that of a human.  In essence, the stronger blood—in this case, the youkai or hanyou's—basically killed off the human blood that remained behind in the system, thus lending the human mate the same lifespan of the youkai or hanyou, enhancing healing abilities though perhaps not as fast as that of the non-human, but . . .

But that was the problem, too.  A youkai or hanyou's blood only lived as long as the original being, so if that mate died, then so would their blood, regardless of whether it was inside their own body or in that of his or her mate . . . If Dieter had marked Miss, there'd be no question.  The dying blood would have been toxic to Miss' human body, and it would have killed her eventually . . .

"So . . . that's good, anyway," Madison said though she sounded like she was trying to be more optimistic than she felt.  "How are you?"

"I'll be fine," he said with a shake of his head.  "I am glad you're here, though."

She forced a tight little smile and kissed his cheek.  "Me, too . . ."


It was so quiet that Valerie could hear herself blinking in the silence, but the rhythmic rise and fall of Evan's chest was reassuring.  It was late, but she wasn't tired.  She doubted Evan would go to sleep, either, even though she also knew that he was exhausted.  Madison had left awhile before to head over to check up on Miss, and she'd called shortly afterward to tell Evan that she was going to stay over there for the night.

"Hey, V . . .?"


"What do you think it's worth?"

Valerie pushed herself up on her elbow and gazed at Evan.  Lying on his back with his hands behind his neck, he had his eyes closed.  "What do I think what's worth?"

"A life," he said simply.  "What's one worth to you?"

"Well," she hedged as she considered his question, "they say that life is . . . priceless."

He waved a hand dismissively and heaved a sigh.  "That sounds good, sure," he argued, "but it doesn't really mean that much if you think about it."

"So what do you mean?"

He opened his eyes, turning his head just enough to stare at her in the darkness.  The only light in the room was the glow of the blue-lit clock on the bedside table and the faint, yellowish glow filtering through the window.  That paltry light was enough, though, to pool in his eyes, making them shine like stars in the deepest night sky.  Come to think of it, she hadn't seen a sky that dark in a long, long time . . .

"Like . . . if you had to give up something to save someone else . . . what would you be willing to give?"

Reaching over, she gently brushed Evan's bangs out of his face, a very soft smile quirking her lips—an almost sad sort of expression—wistful, and maybe a little lonesome . . . "I don't know.  I guess it would depend on who I was trying to save."

Evan nodded as though he could understand that.  "For Maddy?" he challenged.

Valerie let out a deep breath and a husky chuckle.  "For Maddy . . . I'd give up everything I own . . . I'd give up . . . my kidneys or my . . . my liver . . . or my shoes . . ."

He smiled wanly at the hint of teasing in her tone.  "And for me?" he asked quietly.

Valerie was caught off-guard by his question, even though she probably shouldn't have been.  She opened her mouth to answer, but paused, a distinct shiver rushing up and down her spine as the memory of those hours when she didn't know whether he was alive or dead ran through her mind.  "I'd . . . I'd give up my sanity for you, Evan," she replied in a whisper.

He stared at her for a long moment, a thousand things in his gaze—things that she didn't understand—maybe she didn't want to.  "That's cool, V," he whispered back, slipping his arm around her and pulling her close against his side.  There was nothing untoward in the gesture.  It was more like he simply needed the reassurance that she would stay there with him, that he wouldn't have to be alone, and she acquiesced.  It occurred to her that she didn't like to see him this vulnerable, this morose.  Letting out a deep breath, she bit her lip, wishing in vain that she could do more . . .

"What about me, Evan?" she countered mildly, mostly to get her mind off her own thoughts.  "What would you give to save me?"

Evan chuckled.  It almost sounded normal—almost.  "That's easy," he countered.

"Oh?  So tell me," she prompted.

His arms tightened around her, and his sigh was more of a feeling—the rise and fall of his chest—than a sound.  "Whatever it took, V: anything . . ." She felt his lips on her forehead: warm, vibrant.  "Everything."

~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~ =~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~*~=~
'The Nobodies' by Marilyn Manson first appeared on his 2000 release, Holy Wood (In the Shadow of the Valley of Death).  Song written by and copyrighted to Brian Warner, John Lowery.
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Thought from Evan:
A fucking accident …?
Blanket disclaimer for this fanfic (will apply to this and all other chapters in Subterfuge):  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.