InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Torrent ❯ Beg ( Chapter 41 )
[ X - Adult: No readers under 18. Contains Graphic Adult Themes/Extreme violence. ]
“Feh,” InuYasha scoffed as Tajiko giggled, clutching her father's prayer beads in one hand and her own in her other. “As if Kagome would say that to me, in the first place, monk.”
Kagome grinned as she bounced Kiyoshi on her knee.
“Feh! Like I'd ever do that, Sango!”
“Feh!” He thumped Shippou, much to Tajiko's delight. She squealed with glee.
“I've got Taji!”
Kagome heaved a sigh as Sango plucked Tajiko out of InuYasha's grasp. “Hey!”
“Beg!” Kagome said. InuYasha smashed into the floor.
“Beg?” three voices echoed in unison. Sango looked like she was shocked. Shippou looked smug even though he was busy rubbing the new lump on his head. Miroku grinned outright.
“Beg has merit,” he allowed thoughtfully. “Nice, Kagome. Good choice.”
InuYasha sat up with a frown. “That was low,” he commented.
“So was what you did to Shippou,” Kagome shot back.
He stretched out on his side, head propped up on his hand. “Yeah, yeah. The kit had it coming.”
Sango let go of Tajiko. The girl scooted across the floor and used her claws and InuYasha's haori to pull herself up on her knees. Kagome got up to hand Kiyoshi to his mother and retrieve her backpack. She rubbed InuYasha's ear in passing. He caught her hand and stopped her long enough to telegraph her a heated look. She smiled shyly as he let go.
“I think that's our clue to leave,” Miroku announced loudly. Sango grinned.
Shippou hopped up and skittered over to Kagome. “See you tomorrow, Kagome!” he said as he hugged her. Kagome ruffled his hair and gave him a quick squeeze. Shippou dropped to the floor and ran out behind Sango and Miroku.
“Thought they'd never leave,” InuYasha remarked with a snort as the bamboo mat fell back over the doorway. “Nosey monk.”
Kagome caught Tajiko and headed for the futon to feed her. InuYasha followed, letting his head rest on Kagome's knee while she set about feeding the baby. `Mama smell Papa,' Tajiko thought happily, twisting her finger in her hair.
InuYasha intercepted the mischievous smile Kagome sent him. He lowered his head against her knee and grinned. `Taji safe,' Tajiko remarked.
“Tajiko safe,” InuYasha answered. “Papa will protect Tajiko and Mama.”
“Will you?” Kagome mused.
“Feh, wench. What do you think?”
She giggled and rubbed his ear. “You always have protected me.”
`Mama Papa happy.'
InuYasha raised his head, staring at Kagome over the pup in her arms. “Yeah, baby girl,” InuYasha said softly, golden eyes shining, glowing gently, “Papa very happy.”
Kagome flushed and smiled. “Mama, too.”
Tajiko sighed. `Taji happy.'
Kagome stared at the fire. Glancing at her watch, she sighed. InuYasha should have been home hours ago. Now well past midnight, she tried to shove back the worry, the fear that something had happened to him.
Tajiko dozed in her arms. With InuYasha gone, Kagome hadn't thought to put the baby to bed. Needing the comfort of having their child near, she let Tajiko fall asleep against her shoulder and though her arms were cramping and weary, Kagome had no intention of putting Tajiko down.
Where was he?
A villager had come to InuYasha earlier in the afternoon to ask for help with a centipede youkai that was running rampant in the fields. InuYasha hadn't hesitated and had left immediately.
That was hours ago. It wasn't like him, to simply disappear without telling her. If nothing else, he would take her back to her time to stay until he could return. No, there hadn't been any mention of staying away. Still . . . .
Somewhere around two in the morning, Kagome lay down on the futon, cradling Tajiko close and resolved to stay awake until InuYasha came home.
She didn't feel her eyelids getting heavy. She didn't notice as her eyes closed. `Be safe, InuYasha,' she thought vaguely as sleep threatened to claim her. `Hurry home . . . .'
“And he never came home?”
Kagome shook her head once with a jerk, as though her body hadn't wanted to answer, as though her voice had been unwilling.
Miroku sat back with a frown. “The villagers said that InuYasha took down the youkai with a single sweep of Tetsusaiga. He should have been home soon after.” Stabbing the monk with a marked glare, Miroku grimaced and relented. “I guess you already knew that, right?”
Kagome sighed as Sango rubbed her back and handed her a cup of tea. “I'm sure it's nothing. Perhaps someone else required his aide. As much as InuYasha blusters, you know he'd always help anyone who asked.”
“Maybe,” Kagome agreed, watching her seven month-old daughter as Tajiko chased Kirara around the small hut.
Miroku stood and headed for the door.
“Where are you going?” Sango asked, stopping her husband before he stepped outside.
“I thought I'd ask around the village,” he replied. “See if anyone knows what could have delayed InuYasha.”
Kagome sighed. There was something unsettling about InuYasha's absence, something black and terrible. If only she knew why she felt it was so.
He'd been gone over two days. Kagome stood in the doorway staring at the setting sun. She'd refused her friends' offer to stay with them until InuYasha returned. For some reason, she wanted to remain here.
Forcing herself out of the doorway, Kagome turned to lift Tajiko into her arms. “A little,” she admitted. It wouldn't do any good to lie to the child. She was far too perceptive, even at her young age, not to know a lie when she heard one.
Tajiko whimpered and tried to nudge her head into Kagome's shoulder. `Taji scared . . . Papa gone.'
“Papa will be home soon,” Kagome tried to assure the child as she sank down on the futon. “Soon.”
`Papa gone . . . Taji not safe.'
Kagome winced. “No, angel. Mama will keep you safe.”
The child whimpered again.
`InuYasha, where are you?'
`Papa comes home?'
“Soon, Taji, soon.”
`Papa comes home!'
Kagome looked up as the bamboo mat rustled in the doorway. Tajiko squirmed out of her grasp and scooted across the floor to tug herself up against InuYasha's legs.
“Welcome home,” she said, slowly rising to her feet. She couldn't help the irritation that gnawed at the edges of her nearly overwhelming relief as she saw him standing there. Relief won out, though, and Kagome started forward to throw herself against him before she could even summon up the anger to demand that he tell her where he had been.
The look in his eyes stopped her. Sad, hurt, angry, InuYasha gazed at her without blinking as unrelenting foreboding gripped her heart. He didn't speak for a long while but did stoop to pick up Tajiko before returning his fathomless eyes back on Kagome again.
She shook her head slowly, as though trying to deny the emotion in his expression than the question he had asked. “What?”
He drew a deep breath, leaning back against the doorframe as he blinked once, holding his eyes closed a second longer than he had to. “Why would you let him kiss you?”
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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.
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