InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Torrent ❯ Possession ( Chapter 19 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
Kagome stared out of the window at the falling snow. InuYasha lay on the futon with Tajiko cradled in his arms. They slept so peacefully that she didn't have the heart to wake them: their daughter with her tiny fists tangled in her father's hair. Kagome smiled sadly. Why didn't she feel as though she belonged there, with the two of them?
The soft knock on the door drew Kagome's attention, and she glanced at the bed to make sure that InuYasha hadn't been disturbed before she hurried over to see who was there.
Sesshoumaru, dressed in his flowing white kimono with orange-red accents and black armor, nodded to her. The light filtering through the hallway from the one window on the far end shed an innocent light on the youkai. Kagome didn't trust him. “I trust you slept well?”
Kagome didn't move away as she pulled the belt on her robe a little tighter. “It was fine, thanks.”
Vaguely amused by her answer, Sesshoumaru's eyes seemed to glow in the semi-darkness. “Join me for breakfast?”
“No, thank you, Sesshoumaru. InuYasha wants to leave this morning.”
His eyes seemed to glow as he regarded her, slowing traveling the length of her. Kagome flushed, her arms lifting to cover her chest. She'd never felt more naked in her life, so exposed. She didn't like it. “Join me, miko. I have a proposition for you.”
“I'm not interested.”
“You will be.”
Taking her arm, he escorted Kagome down the stairs. She pulled away from him but followed. He chuckled softly and led the way to the great room where trays had already been set up for them. She eyed him suspiciously as she sank on her knees. “Awfully sure of yourself, aren't you?
Trepidation tied her stomach in knots. She stared at the food before her but didn't touch it. “Not hungry, miko? Surely your pup needs the nourishment?”
“Her name is Tajiko,” Kagome remarked softly.
“Child of the silver and gold,” he replied, his tone cordial despite the underlying hint of predatory instinct. “A lovely name, of course.”
She wasn't able to play his games. Whatever it was that Sesshoumaru was thinking escaped her. “What is this proposition you think I'd be interested in?”
He nodded at her. “No finesse, I see. You've doubtless been exposed to that baka a bit too long. Very well then, my proposition is simple. Leave InuYasha. I will offer you shelter, protection. I'll even take in your daughter. Rin would love to have her around, I am sure.”
“I'm not interested,” Kagome remarked without even considering Sesshoumaru's offer. “I belong with InuYasha.”
His movements were a blur. Shooting off his cushion, he strode forward, catching her wrists, dragging her to her feet, against his body. She tried to pull away. He was too strong. “He does not appreciate what he has, and yet you say you `belong' with him? Mean you not that you belong `to' him, miko? Or is it that you fear him? Youkai law dictates your lives. InuYasha may have mated you, but he does not own you. Because of this, it makes things more difficult.”
“Let go of me.”
“Shall I slay him for you, miko? Free you from him? That is the only way you can be free of him---InuYasha must die.”
“You've never been able to kill him. You can't now. Take your hands off me, Sesshoumaru.” She pulled against his iron grip. His skin was cool, trapping her yet not harming her. Hands tightening enough to prevent her escape, but not enough to cause her injury, Sesshoumaru's eyes narrowed.
“Think you I've tried to kill him? Worthless half-breed that he is, I've toyed with him this long while.”
“You're lying. InuYasha has defeated you time and again.” She jerked her arms back. He let her only to bring her up closer against him. Arms held at her sides, her entire body molded against his. She tried again to pull away.
He chuckled. “By all means, miko: fight me as hard as you wish. You are no more to InuYasha than a toy, a filler for the one he cannot have.”
“That's not true.” She tried to hide the doubt in her voice, the trace of fear that Sesshoumaru's harsh assessment might be accurate.
He didn't miss the hesitation, the hint of doubt that lingered. The predatory gleam in his gaze intensified. “But you wonder, do you not? In the night when he reaches for you with his dirty hands, with his miserable intentions, you wonder if you are but a dim substitute in his mind for the one he cannot have.” Kagome whimpered against the harsh words. “Let me set you free, miko. Let me . . . honor you.”
Drawing together the remnants of her deteriorating resolve, Kagome tried again to pull away, to distance herself from the youkai. “Take your hands off me, Sesshoumaru. If I scream---”
“If you scream, I'll kill InuYasha. You know this. That I've let him live this long is simply because it suited me to do so.”
The truth of it was in his gaze, written in the depths of his stare. He might have been toying with InuYasha all along, toying with her---toying with them all---but stubborn belief swept through her, blind faith that InuYasha could save her. He always saved her. He would save her now. “Why? Why me? Why do I matter?”
“You matter to me.”
“I don't! Let go of me! InuYasha---”
“I offer you a way out, and you content yourself to be nothing more than InuYasha's possession. Know you, miko, what InuYasha does, all those nights he leaves you to see her? She leaves no scent on him. She is dead. Think you that he doesn't possess her, as well? Can you really be so naïve?”
“He wouldn't . . . he couldn't . . .”
“But he does.”
“Kiss me, miko. See the truth, and you shall know.”
Tears welled behind her eyes, blocked her throat. Trying to hold them back, fighting to believe in InuYasha, she shook her head miserably, unable to give words to the thoughts, to the doubts that she'd tried so long to hide. “Why are you doing this to me?” she whispered.
“You deserve far better than him.” His words were soft, low, hurtful, and cunning. “I want to understand you. You need not love. That emotion binds you to him, but it does not bind him to you. You need to be free of it; free of him. I seek knowledge. You seek . . . wings.”
She gasped, drawing back, forcing herself to meet his gaze. How could he know of that, her desire to fly? How could he know everything? “I'm with InuYasha because I want to be,” she maintained, “because I choose to be.”
Staring down into her face, eyes raking over her with a contained brutality, Sesshoumaru leaned closer, lips grazing hers as he spoke, “You chose nothing. It was his will that was forced upon you, his desires, his possession. You made not a choice, miko, not from the day you fell into this world. It's all been by design. He willed you to come, to bring back his dear Kikyou. His soul called to yours, and you, silly human girl . . . you answered. Think you that everything is arbitrary? That everything happens on accident? You are not a fool. How could you not know this?”
He let go of her suddenly. She stumbled back only to be caught, brought up against him. One hand on the small of her back, holding her to him, the other at the base of her neck as his lips descended on hers. Kagome struggled against him, tried to turn her face away, tried to fight him off. Her attempts were unrewarded, ignored. A kiss so different from those she shared with InuYasha, Sesshoumaru's mouth was unyielding, taking, calculated and cold.
He stepped toward her, his knee parting her robe, parting her legs. Kagome shoved him back. Caught off guard, the youkai stumbled. She didn't wait for him to recover. She ran.
InuYasha was still sleeping. Kagome closed the door softly, leaning her forehead against the frame as the first sob came. She choked it back and moved over to the balcony to slip outside.
The wind was a bitter thing. Her bare feet numbed on the icy stones. The thin silk robe offered no protection against the frigid air. Kagome didn't feel it. Her body transcended physical pain. The ache that had been ripped open by Sesshoumaru's words assailed her, one by one, and they tore at her already bleeding heart. With the vindictiveness of the bitter wind, his words cut right through her, sliced at her.
She sank to her knees and wept without a sound, without solace. She'd never felt quite so alone, so lost in a world where she didn't belong. As though she only half-existed, she wasn't sure where the other half of her had been left. She felt broken, unsalvageable, unrecognizable. The girl who had thought that by showing InuYasha how to laugh again that she could free him from the ghosts that haunted him . . . Where had she gone?
`Sesshoumaru was trying to feed off your fears, Kagome . . . you know this.'
Common sense told her that this was true. Insecurities lent it more credence. Too easy to believe the things she'd already thought at one time or another.
`It isn't just me, if Sesshoumaru can see it too . . .'
`What do you want, Kagome?'
She choked back a sob though the tears ran down her face, freezing in the wind. `I want . . . InuYasha . . .'
Sesshoumaru's words came back to haunt her, wrenching her heart, causing more pain, “His youkai chose you. InuYasha's youkai is completely separate from his heart, and that heart---that human thing---it chose Kikyou long ago.”
“No,” she whispered, willing her words to be true. “He wouldn't . . . he cares for me.”
“You chose nothing. It was InuYasha's will that was forced upon you, his desires, his possession.”
But if that were true, why did he take the time to be gentle with her? Why did he take the time to make sure she was cared for? Why did he bother to try to make her smile? Even if he didn't love her, even if he loved Kikyou more, he still allowed Kagome to have some place in his heart, some bit of himself. It had always been enough for her before. She was willing to accept him for what he could offer her.
Vague memories, candid recollections, visions of things she wanted to believe . . . Watching shooting stars with InuYasha . . . the gentle smile that he tried to hide . . . the moments when he'd pull her close and hold her against his heart . . . Did he know how much she cherished those moments? Could he know how much they meant to her? The memories she clung to, the ones that led her back to him time and again.
Those memories dried her tears, soothed the hurt in her soul. With a deep breath, Kagome stood up and stepped back inside. Tajiko stirred, and Kagome lifted her, letting the infant nurse as she stared at InuYasha's sleeping face. The lines and planes, the mixture of shadows and light all combined in him. In quiet moments like this, it was so easy for her to remember what she felt for him, why she stayed with him. He looked like a boy yet she knew the man, and she adored them both in him. “InuYasha . . . I love you,” she whispered as she smoothed his hair, knowing he was sleeping, knowing he couldn't answer, calling herself a coward for saying things to him when he wouldn't remember, things she wasn't brave enough to say to him when she stared into his eyes.
He sighed softly, ears twitching, and in a muffled voice, he answered, “My . . . K'gome . . .”
She smiled as tears filled her eyes, and she wondered if he knew what he said in his sleep.
== == == == == == == == == ==
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.