InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Torrent ❯ Goshinboku ( Chapter 39 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
“I don't know, Kagome . . . I don't really think it was intentional, if that's what you mean. So far as I know, I've never heard of anyone doing such a thing. I mean, would anyone really want to have their senses dulled?”
She considered that then shrugged. “There's got to be a way.”
The houshi shook his head slowly. “I don't think so, Kagome. If you want him to have the side effect, you may have to swallow your pride and reinstate the command . . . however, I don't think the same one would work twice. . . . . Might I offer a few suggestions?” Miroku's tone was innocent---too innocent.
Kagome glared at the monk. “I don't think so.”
Miroku sighed dramatically. “I was simply trying to offer my assistance . . . .”
“That's what I'm afraid of.”
He clutched at his chest with an exaggerated grimace. “You wound me, Kagome! I'll have you know my intentions here are above reproach.”
Kagome didn't buy it. The look she telegraphed the monk said so. “Miroku, I know you too well for that.”
“May I make one suggestion?”
She sighed. “All right,” she allowed grudgingly, flinching inside at whatever the monk would come up with.
“Perhaps you ought to consider making it a nice command this time . . . Perhaps then it would take such a stigma off of it for the two of you.”
“That's not a half-bad idea, Miroku. I'll consider it.”
Miroku chuckled. “Just to us all a favor? Try not to activate the enchantment in front of us, if you use a more . . . interesting command?”
Any feelings of good-will that Kagome had previously had for the monk disappeared at his last bit of nonsense. She stalked away without another glance at the `helpful' man.
`So I can't just put a protective spell on the beads, after all,' she thought with a frown as she headed back through the village toward home. Still, she had to admit that Miroku's suggestion of making the submission spell something that InuYasha wouldn't hate hadn't occurred to her. The trouble was, she wasn't sure what sort of trigger word she ought to use for it.
She sighed. She hated the idea of enchanting the beads again. True, the first spell had come in handy in more than one instance. But now that the power was gone, she wasn't anxious to put it back, either.
She stepped inside the hut as InuYasha stepped out of Tajiko's bedroom with the child in his arms. “Mama!” Tajiko greeted happily, squirming to escape her father's grasp.
Kagome took the girl and kissed her cheek. Tajiko bounced in excitement.
“Did you talk to Miroku?”
Making a face, Kagome nodded. “He doesn't think a simple protection will work, in this case. He said he thinks it was more of a side-effect then something that was meant to be.”
That smug look surfaced on InuYasha's face and he practically gloated. “So if you'd have just listened to me before and done it, then we wouldn't have to worry about it now.”
She knew when she was defeated. After shooting InuYasha a dark look, she slowly grasped the prayer beads in her hand and closed her eyes. She didn't see the hazy pink light envelop her hand and the beads. She did hear InuYasha's soft gasp. She felt the tingle as the spiritual energy she emitted soaked into the wooden beads. When she finally opened her eyes again, InuYasha was staring at her with an odd mix of respect and reluctance lighting his gaze.
“Now to say the command,” she muttered with a rueful frown.
“I trust you,” he replied.
She didn't get a chance to answer. One of the villagers hurried into the hut and bowed. His words were interrupted by heavy gasps as he tried to catch his breath and talk at the same time. “Help! Please! Youkai---”
InuYasha didn't wait to hear more. He grabbed the villager and dropped him onto his back as he headed out the door.
“Yeah, Papa must help.”
Kagome hugged her daughter a little tighter. “No, angel. Mama not go.”
Tajiko giggled and leaned her head against Kagome's shoulder. Kagome retrieved her backpack and swung it over her shoulder as she headed outside and down the path that led to Sango's hut. She was almost there when one of the village men ran up to her.
“My lady! Ito was in the field and collapsed! Can you help him?”
Kagome hurried to Sango's. `Stay here, Taji, be good.'
She kissed Tajiko's forehead. “Yes, angel. Mama must go. Mama will be back. Sango? Can you---?”
Sango nodded as she took Tajiko from her friend. “Of course!”
Tajiko whined and pushed against Sango. `No, Mama! No smell stranger on Mama!'
Kagome didn't have time to reassure the child as she hurried after the young man. “Is he awake?” she questioned as they ran out of the village.
“Nay, my lady! He clutched his chest and fell over.”
Kagome flinched. It sounded like a heart attack, and if that was the case, she didn't have anything to help him.
It was as she had feared. She didn't have to get close to the man to know that he was dead. Still she moved the village men aside and knelt beside him. Meeting the young man's concerned gaze, she shook her head slightly. He closed his eyes for a moment then bowed to her.
She stared at the deceased as her eyes filled with tears. The man wasn't that old, and his wife and four children lived very near her on the outskirts of the village. She stood up, quickly wiping her eyes. “I'll go back to the village and tell his family,” she explained.
“Shall I go with you?” the young man asked.
Kagome shook her head. “No. I think it'd be best if I go alone. Can you all bring him in?”
She trudged back toward the village, shoulders slumped as more tears fell. It was a part of life, she knew. Dying meant the end of one cycle and the beginning of another. Still, it was hard to grasp, and it was a facet of life in this era that she hated.
She stopped as she drew nearer the dwelling. Of everything she had to do, telling someone that she couldn't save someone they loved . . . it was, by far, the hardest part. She dried her eyes and drew a steady breath before squaring her shoulders and heading purposefully toward the hut.
InuYasha stepped into the quiet hut with a marked frown. Kagome wasn't here. He'd made quick work of the renegade youkai. He'd not been gone more than two hours. `Maybe she went to go see Sango,' he thought as he strode out of the hut again.
“Papa!” Tajiko screeched as InuYasha's scent wafted to her. He grinned. `Nothing wrong with my pup's senses,' he mused.
She crawled to him. Sango giggled from where she sat in the yard picking through some vegetables. Shippou was occupying Kiyoshi in the shade of the hut. InuYasha lifted her into his arms and kissed her cheek. “Where's Mama?” he asked the girl.
Tajiko whimpered and buried her face in InuYasha's haori. `Mama go . . . stranger go.'
He frowned. “What?” He shifted his gaze over to the youkai exterminator. “Oi! Sango! Where's Kagome?”
“One of the villagers collapsed in the fields . . . but that was awhile ago. I don't know where she is.”
`Mama smell like stranger.'
Without saying anything, InuYasha turned and headed off through the village, sniffing the air to find his mate. He tracked her to a villager's hut but was surprised to discover that her scent also led away from there, into the forest.
`Mama go . . . stranger smell.'
`Did Mama go with a stranger?'
`Mama smells, stranger smells.' Tajiko whimpered again and tried to snuggle deeper into InuYasha's arms.
InuYasha sighed as he headed back toward Sango's hut. Sango glanced up from her task. “You didn't find her?”
He shook his head, unwilling to voice the concerns that Tajiko had presented. “Can you watch Taji awhile longer?”
Sango nodded slowly. “InuYasha? What's wrong?”
`Papa go, but Papa be back with Mama, okay?'
Tajiko's eyes filled with tears. Her nostrils quivered, and she looked like she was ready to cry. `Papa go,' she replied.
He kissed her forehead and handed her to Sango. “She went into the forest,” he admitted. “I'm going to go find her.”
He bounded off, following Kagome's scent.
`Mama smell like stranger.'
`Damn it, Kagome, why does Tajiko say that?'
The ability to project their thoughts was a youkai trait that often was given up once the ability to speak out loud was learned. Often times the pup used it only to speak to their mothers, to ask for whatever they needed. That Tajiko was using it to speak to both him as well as Kagome showed just how smart she really was.
`But why did it upset her so badly? And why did she say it that way?'
InuYasha sniffed and launched himself forward. Kagome seemed to be near Goshinboku. Why would she be there?
`Mama smell like stranger.'
The only time that someone would change scent was when there was some sort of intimacy involved . . . . `Stop being a baka,' he scolded himself with a grimace. `As if Kagome would do something like that.'
`Mama smell like stranger.'
He stopped suddenly. There she was, curled at the base of the God Tree, sleeping, he could tell. Her scent said as much. But he also smelled tears, and that was enough to temper his irritation. He breathed deeply. Kagome smelled the same as always. Why had Tajiko been so insistent that Kagome smelled different?
With a smothered gasp, Kagome awoke and sat up, eyes darting about wildly. When they finally settled on him, he was shocked to see more tears well up, fall over. She stood and hurled herself into his arms as she sobbed.
“What's wrong?” he asked, trying to figure out what would have caused her to be so upset.
She shook her head but kept weeping. He held onto her, resigned to let her tears run their course before he'd get any answers.
Gathering her up in his arms, InuYasha bounded into the tree. Kagome didn't respond, and he wondered briefly if she even realized that he'd moved with her. Wrapping her in the generous folds of his haori, he rested his cheek on her hair while she finally wound down to sniffles and hiccups. “What happened?”
She leaned away and dragged in a deep breath punctuated by stuttering sighs as she wiped her eyes with the back of her hand. “One of the villagers died in the field today, and his wife . . . . She was so sad, and . . . . They have a little girl, you know? She's about the same age I was when my father . . . .” She sighed and shook her head. “It was stupid.” Kagome swallowed hard and blinked as another wash of tears welled up. “I just kept thinking that she was really going to miss her Papa.”
Her voice broke as the tears spilled again. InuYasha flinched and drew her back into his arms. “Can I do anything to make you feel better?” he asked, and hating that he had to ask, hating that he didn't know what to do for her.
“Just holding me is fine,” she whispered. “Thank you.”
“I can do that,” he murmured, holding her close again.
Heh, yes I know, I haven't gotten around to having Kagome give him a new command. She will probably do it in the next chapter, so hang on… lol!
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Review Q & A
When will Sesshoumaru tell InuYasha about Kagome? And when Tajiko talks to Kagome in her mind does she use words or feelings that can relate into words? Happy Writing!
Sesshoumaru does things on his own time table… So I'm sure he'll present himself at the worst possible time LOL…
Tajiko sort of mentally speaks to both Kagome and InuYasha. The trouble is, the child doesn't know `verb tenses' so she ends up speaking in present tense even if she isn't meaning to, for example, “Mama smell stranger smell.” What she means is, Mama came home before smelling like some stranger. That's not how InuYasha interpreted it, though…
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.