Author: The Hatter Theory PM
You may feed a wolf as much as you like, he will always glance toward the forest. A Kouga/Kagome fic.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Drama - Kagome H. & Kouga - Chapters: 4 - Words: 13,215 - Reviews: 24 - Favs: 28 - Follows: 49 - Updated: 04-18-12 - Published: 03-14-12 - id: 7923584
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
By: The Hatter Theory
Disclaimer: I don't own the rights to Inu Yasha
For Velvy, my personal cheerleader and ego booster.
Thanks for taking the time to get me through this first chapter.
She walked ahead of her sister and friend, determined to get in the house before they did. The house itself -closer to a cabin like mansion- loomed ahead and she jogged the last several feet. The vacation home no longer intimidated her, was no longer a reminder of her friend's inherited affluence. Now it was a place of memories, four wonderful years of them, and she wanted a private moment with it before the pair behind her caught up.
Opening the door she closed it behind her quickly, hoping her sister would delay Inu Yasha for a few minutes. The stairs in the foyer alone held a wealth of memories, and she looked at it, hoping to -perhaps foolishly- emblazon it in her mind, a perfect picture of what it was now.
However, she stopped, realizing that her arrival had given someone as much pause as she felt.
"Who are you?" She asked, brows knit together. Inu Yasha hadn't mentioned anyone else spending the weekend with them, and she felt a little put off at the intrusion. Maybe he was a friend of Sesshoumaru's, and her friend's older brother was going to be by.
"Who the hell are you?" The man snapped, crossing his arms and looking her up and down, making no effort to hide the fact. Bristling under his brazenly assessing gaze, she opened her mouth to say something witty and sarcastic, at least she hoped so, when the front door opened and Kikyo and Inu Yasha stepped in.
"Kouga, what are you doing here?" Inu Yasha asked dumbly, eyes widening as he looked first at the man on the stairs and then her.
"You know this guy?"
"Old friends," Kouga chuckled with a smirk as he walked down the stairs and past her. "And you said to come see you when I got out. The bastard said you'd be here this weekend."
Got out? Out from where? Jail, probably. He looked like an adult that had never quite given up on being a delinquent, with long hair in a high ponytail and jeans with frayed holes in the knees.
"You mean you're done? It hasn't felt like-" Inu Yasha stopped short and shrugged. "Time flies, I guess."
"Yeah, if you're not the one going through it. I swear to god, I don' know why they bother."
"Umm, hello?" She interjected, feeling as lost as her sister looked. Inu Yasha smiled and turned to his girlfriend, smiling and bringing her to his side.
"Kouga, this is Kikyo, my girlfriend. And that's Kagome."
"I'm Kikyo's sister," She volunteered, noticing for the first time that he had blue eyes. Though she had blue eyes, his were much paler, almost ice blue, and contrasted sharply with his tawny complexion. For a moment she wondered if he was fully asian. He looked asian, but she knew from first hand experience that looks could be deceiving. Her own father had been european, and no one ever guessed her heritage.
"So I take it I interrupted something?" Kouga asked, not offering a proper greeting, but instead turning back to Inu Yasha.
"No, it's fine."
She wanted to stamp her foot and say that no, it was not fine. It would be her last weekend, last visit period, for a long time, and she had wanted to soak in the atmosphere with her two best friends in the world and make a few new ones.
She did not want to have that plan altered by the arrival of Kouga.
However, Kikyo was already talking, making plans for dinner and generally being agreeable, as she usually was. Inu Yasha looked somewhat excited, and Kouga looked...Well, arrogant.
It didn't bode well for her weekend, not at all.
When she walked down the stairs the next morning, she was more than ready to go for a walk with her best friend and sister. Eager and excited, she began throwing things together in the picnic basket that she had bought two years prior, when her sister and best friend had begun dating. It had been a gift for them, but in the end everyone used it when they came to the vacation house.
After packing fruit and sandwiches, she looked at the clock.
It was past one. What were they still doing in bed?
Tip toeing up the stairs, she was readying herself to put her ear to the door only to be stopped by a low moan. Taking a quick step back, she stared at the door, knowing what was going on behind it, but not quite able to comprehend that her sister was in there with her best friend doing it.
Face burning, she ran down the stairs and grabbed the picnic basket, needing to get out of the house before her face burst into flame. Not caring when the door slammed behind her, she ran around the back of the building and past the pavilion. It wasn't until she hit the trail that she slowed, mortification giving way to a stern reprimand.
"Of course they have sex. They're both adults and they've been together for two years. It's natural," She grumbled, face still flush with embarrassment. She had known, her sister didn't keep secrets from her. But she had never been around while they were doing it, or if she had been, she hadn't been aware of it., hadn't ever wanted to be aware of it.
Walking down the trail she navigated the myriad paths, wishing for them to be with her but accepting that they needed their own time. Heaving a sigh, she decided a day on the beach suited her well enough. It was warm enough to swim, and she'd wisely put on her bathing suit under her clothes.
Dirt and trees gave way to bare sand and the tang of salt and brine flavored the air. She gave the sky a carefree smile and walked over the sand, tripping now and again as the sand shifted beneath her feet. She was halfway to the cove they had always picnicked at when she heard it.
Like thunder over the waves, a sound echoed and she screeched, half deafened and afraid, the basket dropping from her nerveless fingers as she spun wildly and looked around, determined to find the source of the noise.
Seeing nothing, she grabbed the basket and, still looking around, she made for the cove.
The sound boomed again, and she struggled not to drop the basket a second time. She'd never heard such a noise, and it was both bewildering and frightening. Especially because she couldn't pinpoint a source.
The sound came again three more times in rapid succession before stopping, and she waited several minutes, standing still and listening for another booming clap of thunder. But nothing came, and she continued, feeling mildly better that whatever, or whoever, it was that made the sound had obviously finished.
The sun was high and warmed the chill from the sea breeze. Determined to put the strange disturbance out of her mind, she wondered if Kikyo and Inu Yasha had finished. If they realized she wasn't there, they'd know precisely where to look for her. She loved one of two spots, one being their cove and the other being a small clearing in the woods. Hoping that they were already getting dressed and on their way, she picked up the pace, coming to the outer wall of the cove and walking carefully around it.
Only to stop and stare, eyes widening.
He was there, and doing something, although her view was obstructed by the lid of the long box on the ground where he knelt.
She considered turning around. They had barely spoken at dinner, both he and Inu Yasha too busy catching up to leave room for much else, and there was something about him that set her on edge. She couldn't quite put her finger on it, but it made her antsy. Not quite nervous, just wary.
But before she could turn, he looked up and smirked, then waved her over. Knowing that running away would not only be rude, but force an explanation at some later time, she gave up and trudged over to him.
"You had to get away from them too, huh?" He chuckled when she sat the basket down. Now that she was close, she could see what was in the box.
A gun. A big one.
He had a gun, maybe more than one. Was he the one that had made the strange, hollow booming sounds that had echoed over the sands?
"I'm going over my gear," He told her, seeing where her gaze was directed. "You're not afraid of it, are you?"
"No," She retorted, flushing hotly at the insinuation. "I've just never seen one up close."
He snorted and closed the box, not bothering to close the combination latches.
"Inu Yasha said you guys are going to America," He said, breaking the silence. She nodded and sat down across from him, drawing her knees up to her chest and gazing out over the ocean.
"There's a program I want to enter in Russia. The head of the program has a condition for anyone that's involved. I have to get some wilderness survival training, and the head has a preferred school for outdoor studies. It's in Alaska. Inu Yasha is going because he said it sounds fun, although he's probably crazy," She joked.
"What's the program?"
"It's to study the gray wolf population. Russia has the highest concentration, but the locations can get pretty remote, and the conditions are pretty harsh."
"You want to study wolves?" He asked, surprise coloring his words.
She nodded, smiling a lopsided smile. Whenever she told someone her goals, they looked at her as if she were crazy. She supposed she shouldn't be shocked. She hardly looked the type to go out into the wilderness and study animals, especially wolves. But had been a dream of hers since she was little.
He seemed genuinely baffled by her interest, and she shrugged, knowing her reasoning would sound silly, perhaps even stupid.
"No one decides to go to Russia for no reason. Why?" He declared flatly, moving to the long duffel bag and pulling out a box. He opened a can of beer and she shook her head when he offered her one. Trying to find a good way to word it, she shrugged again and looked out to the sea.
"I was little when my mom took Kikyo and I to the science museum. They had specimens of the extinct species of wolves on display. It just, I don't, I didn't like seeing them like that. That they'd died out, been hunted like that, I was still little, and the thought made me cry."
And she had cried, and hadn't stopped until she'd had a headache and exhausted herself. The very idea of the beautiful animals she'd seen, stuffed and with their glass eyes, mouths posed in a vicious snarl, still made her want to cry. She'd determined at that moment to do whatever she could to prevent it from happening again, and had put forth years of study to ensure that goal.
"It's good to see a human that actually cares about the future," He muttered.
"What?" She asked, flushing at his angry tone. No one had ever taken an interest in her studies before, in the subject of her study, and he was glaring at the ocean as if it had done something to offend him. For a moment she saw his gaze turn inwards and wondered what it was he was thinking. Obviously something that made him angry, if the downward tilt of his lips was any indication.
"I have some sandwiches and fruit," She offered quietly, wanting to break through the tense silence. He started, coming back to the present with an obvious jolt.
"Yeah, thanks," He muttered, gaze shifting to the basket. She opened it and pulled out two sandwiches, handing him one and settling back to eat hers.
"So how did you and inu Yasha meet?" She asked, not liking the silence at all. The night before she had gotten a picture of a rather boisterous individual, and though she hadn't really liked his brash, rather colorful attitude, she disliked the strange dolor that surrounded him.
"Our fathers were friends. We didn't really have a choice," He admitted, smirking again and taking another long swig of beer. "But when Sesshoumaru started hanging around more, we found a common enemy. That asshole, humph," He snorted, looking amused. "He was born with a stick up his ass."
She couldn't disagree. Inu Yasha's older half brother had never hesitated to treat not only Inu Yasha, but anyone associated with him, like dirt beneath his shoes.
"How about you? Did you meet through your sister?" He asked, looking honestly curious.
"No, I met him at a business event a few years ago, my father works with his and we hit it off. Actually, we hid," She chuckled, recounting the memory. "Neither of us really wanted to be there, and we ended up missing the whole thing. After that we just started hanging out. He didn't meet Kikyo until about two years ago."
He nodded smirking and chuckling.
"I've been dragged to more than my fair share of events like that. They're hellish, aren't they?"
She couldn't help but agree. Dresses and finery were not her style, and she had never gone to another one of the company parties. Her sister, however, did, and Inu Yasha was forced to go to each one as her date, not that he seemed to mind as much anymore.
"So what is it you do, or did?" She asked, taking another bite of her sandwich.
"I worked in the imperial guard," He said in an offhand manner, but she choked on the bite of sandwich that lodged itself in her throat. For a moment she was sure she would die, if not from suffocation then from utter mortification. He reached over and thumped her solidly on the back, and she swallowed deeply, wheezing and dragging in deep breaths.
"The imperial guard?" She demanded. There was no way, he couldn't have! Not only was he not the type, but he was too young!
"Family connections," He muttered, looking put off that it had come up at all. "I'm out now though, thankfully."
And that was said in the tone of someone who had escaped a prison, both grateful and elated, although it hid itself beneath his gruff exterior.
"Why did you do it?" She asked. He shrugged nonchalantly, but she had the feeling he disliked thinking about it at all.
"I was told to by family. Tradition or something. It's over now though, so I'm free to figure something out."
They were quiet after that, finishing their sandwiches in the relative quiet. She felt as if she'd done something wrong, by asking him about his former employment, and though she had initially disliked him,and she wasn't sure if she liked him any more than before, she did want to make amends.
"So why were you shooting?" She asked as she pulled an apple from the basket and bit into it.
"I needed to get away from the happy couple," He snorted. "Same as why you came out here, I figure."
She didn't want to admit that she had fled, and nodded once, feeling awkward.
He grabbed his empty beer can and walked over to a rock, setting it on top of it. She watched curiously as he came back and opened a smaller case, pulling out a pistol and a box of bullets. He moved smoothly, with a practiced ease that both amazed and shocked her. Seconds later he was tossing a pair of bright yellow plugs her way, and getting the hint, she put them in her ears.
She did not expect him to stand and gesture for her to as well.
"What?" She asked dumbly, staring at him.
"Get up," He said impatiently, the earplugs muffling the words. She stood, but once again looked at him blankly when he held the gun out to her.
"You're probably going to need it in Russia anyway," He pointed out.
She stared at the gun.
"Oh come on, don't be such a sissy. Or are you scared of it?" He goaded. She knew he was goading her, but it still sparked her temper, reminding her that she was not exactly fond of him to begin with. Huffing, she accepted the gun and stood with it in front of her.
"Don't let it point anywhere but that way," He commanded. She nodded and stared at the beer can.
"Pull the trigger."
She pulled it once, surprised by how easily it depressed and startled at the kicking motion as it bucked up. She could hear him laughing and turned her head, glaring at his amused smile.
"Like this," He told her, getting behind her and putting his arms over hers. She could barely hear him telling her how to line up the sights and hold her arms so that they wouldn't jerk wildly when she pulled the trigger. When he stepped back, she pulled the trigger once and saw sand kicked up next the beer can.
"Until you hit the can."
She emptied the cartridge without hitting it, sending sand flying into the air.
He took the gun from her and explained the mechanics of it as he slid the cartridge out and pulled the slide back, showing her how to make sure it wasn't loaded.
It wasn't the sort of thing she had ever wanted to learn, but she found herself fascinated by the simple mechanics of the weapon as he showed her how to load and slide the cartridge home.
Once again he helped her position herself and she began pulling the trigger, feeling slightly more confident. After several near misses, she hit the can and sent it careening off of the rock. With a cheer she turned and saw him smirking at her as if she was childish for reacting as she had.
"Keep that thing pointed down," He reminded her, pointing at the gun that was pointed just to the left of him. Flushing, she lowered it and nodded, feeling chastened and silly. He walked over to the can and put it back on the rock, then walked back behind her.
"Until the cartridge is empty."
She continued shooting for the can and continued to miss, her confidence gone from messing up. When it was empty, he took it and slid the cartridge out, shaking his head and chuckling, although she only heard it once she pulled the earplugs out. She was surprised when he pulled his own out, although she supposed he must have been wearing them the whole time.
"That's enough for now," He said, giving her a crooked smile.
Only minutes later Inu Yasha and Kikyo walked up, waving and smiling cheerily.
Inu Yasha inquired about the cases, and Kouga explained that he'd left the service with them. Inu Yasha admitted an instant dislike, and Kouga shrugged it off. She watched the exchange, noticing that something seemed different, and that she couldn't tell what it was worried her.
She stared at Inu Yasha incredulously. Knowing that he hadn't accomplished such a task alone, she swung her gaze to her sister, who was smiling and flushing brightly, her eyes bright with happiness.
"I'm pregnant," She announced happily.
The words echoed in her mind, ricocheting off of her skull pan and around her brain in a loop that refused to be broken.
Kikyo nodded, smile growing even wider.
"With a baby?"
"Like she'd be pregnant with anything else," Inu Yasha snorted, looking at her as if she had grown another head.
Even though she had expected them to get married and have children -in that order- she couldn't help but feel blindsided by the announcement. Her sister. Having a baby. Her best friend, Inu Yasha, would be a father.
"Congratulations," She finally said, smiling. Strangeness aside, they deserved her support, especially considering her grandfather's traditional views on marriage. And he hated Inu Yasha for some reason she had never been able to quite figure out.
"We wanted you to be the first to know," Kikyo said in a rushed breath, coming forward and hugging her tightly. She wrapped her arms around her sister's shoulders and hugged back just as tightly. Tears pricked her eyes and for a moment she felt herself going into free fall.
They had always been a team, and when Inu Yasha had begun dating her, they had become a trio. But a baby, a baby would change things, of that she had no doubt. Feeling just a little jealous of the tiny little being growing inside of her sister, she hugged more tightly, hoping, if nothing else, she and her sister would never lose touch, would never grow apart and lead separate lives.
When Kikyo pulled back, she felt the dread increase, if only a little, because of the other woman's furrowed brows.
"This does mean something though," Kikyo sighed.
"What's that?" She asked, panic lacing the dread and mixing in her stomach, producing a dizzying nausea.
"Alaska is out."
She hadn't even thought of that. It was obvious though, and it pricked at her fear of growing apart from her sister, turning it into a sort of certainty, one that was irrational and illogical, but opened the door to even worse ideas.
She fought off the urge to run from the room, to scream, and instead kept her smile wide and nodded.
"That's fine. You and Inu Yasha needed to be here, safe, and not tromping around the wilderness."
"I don't want you to go by yourself," Kikyo started. Kagome knew Kikyo was probably relieved. She had not been looking forward to months of training in the outdoors, especially considering she would never use it for anything. The only reason she had wanted to go was because it was another country, and she couldn't bear to be separated from her sister. Inu Yasha had also deemed it a good idea to go with them, saying the program sounded fun and that he would like to learn to 'rough it', although she'd always suspected he couldn't stand to be apart from Kikyo for such a long period of time.
And now she was going. Alone. To another country. To the wilderness.
For a moment she reconsidered the whole thing. After all, she should be with her sister during her pregnancy, right?
"Kagome, I know how important it is to you, I still want you to go," Kikyo said in a quiet voice. She cursed her sister's ability to read her so well and nodded, smiling even though she wanted to deny the truth.
In nine months or less, she would be an aunt.
"It'll be okay," She said at last. "I knew you wouldn't follow me to Russia, so this is obviously a good place to start."
Kikyo nodded and her smile returned. Kagome felt her hand being squeezed and looked down, saw her sister's hand squeezing hers and wondered if it would happen again before she left. The moment itself was too surreal, and she wasn't sure how she got through it as talk of babies and engagements and families began floating around the room.
It wasn't until Inu Yasha and Kikyo bid her goodnight that she stood on wooden legs and began walking. Out of the house and down the path in the darkness. She knew it by heart and had little difficulty navigating in the night. There was a half moon shining brightly down on the beach as she walked further and further, out towards the shore. When she got close enough that she could feel the water pushing over her shoes, she sat down, ignoring water soaking her bottom and shoes and socks. She stared out to the shoreline and imagined crossing the sea.
"You alright?" A voice asked, making her jump nearly out of her skin. She turned, saw him standing looking somewhat awkward, as if he wasn't sure he really wanted to be there. The box of beer cans was in his hand.
"My sister is pregnant."
"I heard you guys talking," He said, sitting next to her, heedless of the ocean water lapping at his feet. "You want a beer?"
This time she said yes, although she didn't particularly like beer. Being around Inu Yasha and his gang of friends, she'd had plenty of opportunity to drink it, but it had usually been to sip it slowly, more to have something to hold than to drink it. But she popped the tab on the can and took a long sip, instantly disliking the taste. She must have been making a face, because he laughed when she swallowed.
"You going to be okay?"
She nodded, looking back out to the ocean and wondering what the world was like on the other side of it.
"It's so far away," She sighed.
"Not so far, trust me."
"Have you ever been to Alaska?"
He shook his head, brow furrowing in thought. "I've been to America, but not Alaska. I'm still not sure if I believe that America has wilderness. But it's not like they were going to follow you to Russia, so it's a good time to start," He pointed out before taking another sip of his own beer. "Besides, do you really want to live with those two horn dogs?"
She choked on the sip she had been taking and sputtered, face hot in the face of his blunt observation. His laughter rang out through the night, loud guffawing that was finally met with her own laughter when she realized that he had a point.
"The world never seemed as big as it does now," She admitted at last.
"It's not, not really," He sighed, looking out over the sea almost sadly. "It used to be much bigger."
Twenty four hours before, she had disliked him, but the grief, wistfulness, and even the spark of defiant anger in his eyes made her feel sorry for him.
She hoped she would never see the world as a small place, at least not like he did.
A/N: I've never written K/K before. Hopefully I'll do this one justice. Please let me know what you think. And as for the strangeness, it will be explained, in due time. I have this story plotted out, and with Velvet's help, hopefully it will reach a satisfying end. She is also writing a K/K fic, which is both awesome and hilarious, titled Keeping Company With A Stranger.
All of her fics are wonderful, and you should check them out.