InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Torrent ❯ Mama ( Chapter 8 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
“I am not sure what to say.”
Kagome shot InuYasha a helpless look. InuYasha sat up a bit straighter in his chair. “It . . . uh . . . wasn't planned,” he explained, his face reddening under Mrs. Higurashi's scrutiny.
Her mother's eyebrows shot up at that. “I should hope it wasn't. What do the two of you plan on doing now?”
InuYasha looked like he didn't quite understand the question. It was his turn to look at Kagome for assistance. “Well, in the youkai world, I guess it's like we're married,” she said slowly.
Mrs. Higurashi got up and refilled the tea cups before settling back down to address Kagome's last statement. “You aren't youkai, Kagome. You're human. In the human world, you're not committed to each other at all.” Her gaze shifted from her daughter to InuYasha, who was struggling so hard to keep his mouth closed that his jaws were bulging. “I'm not trying to belittle your heritage, InuYasha. Please understand.”
“Kagome? Is that something you want?”
She was surprised at both his softly uttered question as well as the fact that he would even consider her feelings on the matter. “Well, yeah, but---”
“Then we'll do it,” he stated.
Mrs. Higurashi sucked in her cheek as though she was trying to figure out a way to bring up something else. With a sigh, she finally sat back and lifted her eyebrows. “There's something else you need to do, Kagome. You need to start prenatal visits.”
InuYasha looked completely lost. Kagome couldn't help the flush that crept up her cheeks at the mention of the impending trips to the doctor. “Okay,” she agreed, seeing no way at all around that. If there was one thing that her mother would not let her get away with, it was skipping the prenatal visits.
Her mother smiled wanly and shook her head just a little. “I can't say that I'm pleased with this situation, but I can't say that it was completely unexpected, either.”
Kagome tried not to fidget under her mother's scrutiny and didn't dare so much as glance at InuYasha. She could tell by the stiffness in his posture that he was fighting the desire to grab her and run, not that she blamed him. She was hard-pressed not to flee, herself. “I'm sorry, Mama,” she mumbled.
Mrs. Higurashi shook her head. “Don't be sorry, Kagome, and InuYasha?”
Kagome thought she could see a hint of a smile twitching on her mother's lips but wasn't positive. “I doubt I need to ask this, but you will take care of my daughter, right?”
He blinked, cheeks reddening as he sat up a little straighter. “Keh! I already do, don't I?”
Mrs. Higurashi nodded, casting the hanyou a weary little grin as she stood up to retrieve a small plate of rice cakes off the counter. “Oh, and I fully expect to see this grandchild of mine very often, understand?”
The phone rang, and Kagome breathed a sigh of relief as her mother set the plate on the table and hurried off to answer the call. InuYasha winced slightly as he reluctantly met Kagome's stare. “That wasn't . . . that bad.”
Kagome's expression darkened slightly as she stared at the hanyou. “Did you want worse?”
“Keh! Hell, no! I'm just surprised.”
She was disgruntled enough that, after drinking the tea left in her cup, she muttered, “It was bad enough, thanks.” She intercepted his thoughtful frown and blinked, casting her eyes from side to side around the rim of the cup. “What?”
“Should you be drinking that? Is it safe? For the pup?”
Rolling her eyes, Kagome could only think, `Ahh, it's going to be a long nine months, isn't it?' To InuYasha she measured her tone and said, “I don't think tea ever hurt a baby.”
If his expression meant anything, InuYasha was set to argue with her about the effects of different things on the baby. She cut him off before he could start as a menacing glower surfaced on her face. She pushed away from the table and made quick work of washing both her and her mother's empty cups. InuYasha stood and slowly approached her. “Are you feeling any better?” he asked, his gaze probing hers for traces of a lie.
“I'm fine,” she answered with a small smile. “As long as I don't smell food.”
He flinched and suddenly she found herself dragged against his chest in a fierce hug. “I'm sorry,” he rasped out above her head. She tried to pull away enough to see his face but he held her near. “It's because of me, and . . . I won't do this to you, ever again.”
She smiled at the guilt-ridden concern behind his words and let herself feel the contentment of just being held in his arms. At least she knew that he cared for her a little bit. She only wished . . . `Stop that! You'll just upset yourself, and . . . and . . . oh, now look what you've done! Stop blubbering like a fool, Kagome! Get a grip on yourself!'
“Why are you crying?” he asked, letting go of her only to grasp her arms as he bent down to peer into her face. “Are you sick again? What?”
Miserably, she shook her head, unwilling or unable---she wasn't sure which---to tell him why she was upset. The longer she refused to answer him, the more worried he grew, and finally, he lifted her and strode off toward her room.
“Stop, Kagome,” he begged as he set her on her bed. “Don't cry . . . please?”
The harder she tried to stop crying, the harder she cried. InuYasha was beside himself, unable to think of what to do, of how to comfort her. She shook her head, trying to tell him that it wasn't his fault, that she was just being emotional. The words wouldn't come, and that made her cry even harder.
“What? Was it something I said? I'm sorry! Whatever I did, I'm sorry!” he babbled, stroking her hair, wiping her tears. “Just stop, please stop!”
Her wailing escalated. She didn't hear the soft knock on her door. InuYasha did. Wrenching the handle, he threw the door open wide, a look of relief flooding over his features as Mrs. Higurashi peeked over his shoulder at her sobbing daughter. “I thought I'd see if everything was all right,” she explained, her voice making InuYasha flinch inwardly.
“I didn't do anything,” he blurted. “I don't know why she started crying!”
She patted his shoulder and jerked her head toward the hallway, asking him to give her a few minutes alone with Kagome. He didn't look like he wanted to do leave but after staring sadly at the weeping girl, he finally he nodded and stepped out into the hallway. Mrs. Higurashi offered him an encouraging smile as he slumped back against the wall, arms crossed over his chest. He'd obviously decided to wait it out right there.
Kagome sniffled and sat up as tears still coursed down her face. “Mama?” She glanced around the room. “Where---is---he?” she gasped out between hiccups.
Mrs. Higurashi smiled gently as she sank down on the bed beside her daughter. “He's out in the hallway. I think you've frightened him. Care to tell me why you're crying?”
Shaking her head sadly and accepting the tissue that her mother offered, Kagome wiped her eyes and blew her nose. “I don't know why,” she admitted. “I just . . . and he . . .”
Smoothing back Kagome's hair, Mrs. Higurashi pulled her daughter next to her and wrapped her arm around her. Kagome let her head fall against her mother's shoulder. “It's never easy, is it, Kagome? Aren't you happy about your baby?”
Kagome drew a stuttered breath and swiped at her still-watering eyes. “Yeah . . . I think so . . . I just found out before we came to tell you, but . . . why aren't you more upset? Disappointed in me?”
Her mother's gentle laughter soothed Kagome as much as the tender squeeze on her shoulders. “You've grown up, Kagome. I'll admit, I was worried when you chose to keep returning to the past. You're old enough to make your own decisions, and as much as I'd like to be able to help you, I can't if you don't talk to me . . .” she sighed, still toying with Kagome's hair. “I know how you feel about InuYasha. You wear your heart on your sleeve when it comes to him . . . and I know, too, that he cares about you---very much so. I have nothing to be disappointed in you for.”
Kagome pulled away, idly toying with the tissue in her hands as she tried to put her concerns into words. “That's just it, Mama,” she said slowly, shaking her head in confusion. “I know he cares about me, but he . . .” She tried to draw a deep breath. Another sob escaped. “Kikyou and he . . . it's always Kikyou, and I can't compare with her.”
Mrs. Higurashi sighed and retrieved another tissue from the box. She held it out to Kagome as she smoothed back her hair. “I don't think he wants you to compare to Kikyou. Sometimes things seem different to us when we're so close to the situation. Can you be misreading him in this?”
Slowly, miserably, Kagome shook her head as another bout of sobs erupted. “No, I'm not,” she rasped out, her voice thick, almost screechy. “After we . . . I was sleeping, and he went to her. Why? Why would he do that?”
Mrs. Higurashi didn't look as though she had an answer for that. She sighed and kissed Kagome's forehead, wiping her daughter's eyes with a clean tissue. “That's something you'd have to ask him. I wish I knew.”
“I can't ask him,” Kagome squeaked as she blew her nose again. “I don't think I want to know.”
Mrs. Higurashi was quiet a few minutes. She hugged Kagome and soothed her like she used to when Kagome was a little girl and had fallen off her bike, skinned her knees. The poignant memory brought a trembling smile to her lips even as tears welled up in her own eyes. As much as she wished she could make everything better for her daughter, she knew she couldn't. It was enough to break her heart. “Darling,” she finally said, breaking the comforting silence in the room, punctuated only by Kagome's sniffles and ragged breathing. “Do you want to marry him? You know I'd never force you to do something like that. If you tell me you don't want to---”
Kagome rasped out a half-laugh, half-sob. “That's just it . . . I do want to, because I . . .” She trailed off, eyes puffy, red, staring down at the tissues balled tightly in her fist.
Her mother patted her hands. “I know you do,” she said in answer to Kagome's unvoiced statement. She kissed Kagome's forehead again and stood. “Now, I'm going to go call the doctor and make an appointment for you. Is there anything you need?”
She shook her head and forced a weak smile. “No.” She watched as her mother headed toward the door. “Mama?”
Mrs. Higurashi stopped and turned back, a gentle smile lighting her face. “Yes, dear?”
The smile widened. Then she opened the door and left.
Kagome got up and tossed out the used tissues before pulling a few more. She stared at the box a moment and, with a sigh, grabbed the whole thing before heading back to her bed.
The door opened slowly, and InuYasha stuck his head in the room. He looked worried, and try as she might, Kagome couldn't summon up the bravado to smile. “Can I come in?”
The uncertainty in his tone drew a smile from her, though, and Kagome scooted over to make room for him to sit. Closing the door behind him, he did as she bade him before turning to stare at her, questions awash in his gaze.
She shook her head in response to those questions. He looked irritated for a moment before he sighed. “We can stay here as long as you want.”
His offer surprised her. Always so insistent upon returning to the past, that he would concede to her in this warmed her. At least he cared enough for her to think about what she might want . . . `That's unfair, Kagome, and you know it. He's not entirely insensitive, you know.'
“You can't leave the village unguarded, InuYasha. You know that as well as I do.” She sighed. “As long as I come back for doctor visits, I think it'll be fine.” She grinned as another thought crossed her mind. “It's probably better if I spent most of my time back there, anyway. Cleaner air, fresher water . . .”
“Still,” he argued. “You need your mother, don't you?” His tone was resigned but he still smiled slightly. But his eyebrows drew together as he stared at her. “You need to eat, damn it. You're losing too much weight.”
She made a face. She agreed with him on that. It had been weeks since she'd been able to eat anything with any hopes of her body not rejecting it right away. “It's just a phase,” she assured him. “I'm sure it'll pass.”
Another soft knock on the door, and Mrs. Higurashi looked relieved to see the two of them sitting together and not arguing. “Kagome? I made an appointment for you. It's tomorrow at ten.”
Kagome nodded as her mother backed out of the room and closed the door behind her. InuYasha's scowl deepened. “What's this doctor thing?” he finally asked.
Kagome shrugged. “It's just to make sure that everything is okay; that's all.”
He didn't look convinced. “I'm coming with you.”
The look of alarm on Kagome's face was overshadowed only by the stubborn resolve in the depths of InuYasha's stare. “I don't think that's a good idea,” she said slowly.
“Argue all you want, wench. I'm still coming with you.”
Kagome sighed. Stubborn hanyou. She only hoped that it wouldn't turn out to be something that she'd regret later . . .
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Blanket disclaimer for this fanfic (will apply to this and all other chapters in Torrent): 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.