And now part 2 begins. It's time for more fun, tragedies, excitement and adventures with our favourite cast! Thank you for reading the first Arc of this story and I'm glad that you enjoyed it (if you did). I hope that this half of the story will be as good as the first half was and I hope that it doesn't drag on too much. But I enjoy writing this story because I just do hahah, it's a fun thing to do when you don't have a lot of homework :( Anyway here you are, Arc Two! :3
Disclaimer: I do not own Inuyasha; I only own the characters that aren't included in the anime/manga.
The air was cold but fresh as the tiny white snowflakes fell to the ground and covered the land in a beautiful crisp white blanket; it was the middle of winter so the lakes and rivers were now huge icy mirrors.
Inuyasha was sitting beside a frozen river breaking away the ice with an axe, he would then heat the ice so that it would melt down into water which he could then use for Kagome's bath; since she was fragile and rather immobile at the moment she had to bathe in a small bath that Sesshomaru had lent the pair. She was now in the middle of her pregnancy and she was also suffering from terrible baby sickness, every few days she would run a high fever and vomit several times. Though this was her second time with child this time was clearly much worse than her first and either Rin or Kaede or even Inuyasha himself were at her side constantly in case of an accident.
Despite Kagome's apologizing and trying not to work him so hard for her sake, he couldn't help but worry about her even more than when she was first pregnant. The baby was a fierce little thing and it seemed to enjoy kickboxing inside Kagome's stomach even more than Hanyuu had done, it was highly demanding and used up most of it's mother's nutrients meaning that she needed to be fed almost every hour though she would sick it up a little while later.
He sighed as he felt a familiar presence and scent standing behind him, turning his head slightly he sighed, "What do you want, Sesshomaru?" The dog demon Lord glanced down at his younger brother and gave him a blank look, this frustrated Inuyasha as he snapped, "Can you try answering me at least once? I get sick and tired of your vague looks and one word statements!"
Sesshomaru was the one to sigh this time as he chiseled a pile of ice for his brother with one crack of his green whip, "Calm yourself, Inuyasha. The stress is getting to your puny head." he said flatly.
"Oh shut your trap, will you? I'm not in the mood for your attitude." he scowled as he scooped up all of the ice that Sesshomaru had chopped up and placed them into a large brown sack and slung it across his shoulder as he stood up and headed for his hut.
Sesshomaru followed after, using up the rest of Inuyasha's patience quota for the day as he spun around angrily and shouted, "WHAT!? What do you want!? Why are you following me!?"
"I am only assisting you, little brother. Do you have a problem with that?"
"But you hardly ever help me out and whenever you do it's usually for your own selfish reasons, you've been too nice and supportive to me recently, something doesn't smell right! Why are you suddenly acting like an actual brother?"
"Because that is what I am, I haven't been taking that role very seriously so now that has to change." he replied flatly as he overtook Inuyasha by walking a lot faster.
The snow on the ground was still thick and hard to walk in but Sesshomaru seemed to be gliding over it with ease, Inuyasha increased his walking speed as he tried to overtake his older brother: there was no way that he was letting stupid Sesshomaru beat him back to his own home. Sesshomaru saw Inuyasha's speed quicken from the corner of his eye so he smirked slightly and quickened his pace just to annoy the half demon even more.
Inuyasha knew that Sesshomaru was trying to out-walk him as well as show off, but he wouldn't let himself be beat so easily; after all, a race was a race even if there was no signal that it had even begun. The half demon took off immediately in the direction of the forest, the bag of ice still slung securely across his shoulder, and ran as fast as he could. Sesshomaru wasted no time as he also flew into the forest which happened to be on the way to the village.
The two zoomed through the snow-coated trees at high speeds leaving frosty trails behind them. Inuyasha glanced across at Sesshomaru who had caught him up and was flying through the whiteness of the forest, who also glanced back at him and Inuyasha could have sworn that he saw his brother smirk in a sort of competitive way. But it wasn't in an overly arrogant look or a look that could have suggested he was superior to the half breed that Inuyasha was, it was a look that two brothers would give one another whilst playing together. Inuyasha had never seen Sesshomaru look at him like that before.
Sunlight was streaming onto Inuyasha's face from the gaps in the snowy trees up ahead, the village was only a few feet away and he was not going to lose this race. He leapt high into the branches away from Sesshomaru and hopped from branch to branch until he was out in the clearing in which the village had been built upon, he landed in front of his hut and crossed his arms proudly, "It looks like I win, Sesshomaru! Sucker!" he gloated proudly only to find that his brother was nowhere in sight.
Shaking his head and deciding that the Sesshomaru he had seen only a few seconds ago was simply an illusion, he would never be that decent. He walked into the hut and placed the bag filled with ice on the floor beside Kagome who was sleeping in her futon; she was sweating heavily and tossing and turning all over the sheets.
Kaede wandered into the room with several clean blankets in her arms which she placed down in one of the cupboards, when she eventually noticed Inuyasha she sighed at him, "Ah, Inuyasha. I only sent ye to get some ice, what ever took ye so long?"
"I uh, was pre-ocupied with... something else." he muttered trying not to make himself seem suspicious. If he told Kaede that he was running around playing with Sesshomaru and they weren't trying to kill each other she would probably die of a heart attack and that wouldn't be ideal right now.
She raised her eyebrow at him and nodded slowly, "Right, of course ye were."
"Well... Don't just sit there woman, go and melt the ice with the stove!"
"But I'm a frail old woman, shouldn't YE be doing that now?"
"I can't just leave Kagome's side like that when I just got back to her! Are you trying to make me look like a bad husband!?"
"Inuyasha... the stove is directly behind ye." she sighed face palming, "Ye would only have to move a few feet whereas if I did it I would have to walk all the way across the room!"
"Alright! Alright! I'll do it already! YE lazy old hag." he snapped crawling over to the inside fire and emptying the bag of ice into Kaede's soup dish (although Inuyasha thought that it looked more like a witch's cauldron). The icy chunks immediately began to melt in the large pot and steamed in the heat.
"See? That wasn't so hard now, was it?" Kaede teased.
He simply scowled at her then glanced across at Kagome who still looked like she was having a very troubled sleep, he sighed as she coughed and stretched out her legs in pain. Her eyes were squeezed shut and her forehead crinkled as her eyebrows pointed down in discomfort.
"Oh dear, she must be having another nightmare." Kaede said as she gently shook Kagome in an attempt to wake her.
Kagome groaned and opened her eyes before yawning and coughing violently, she could feel the vomit climbing up the back of her throat as she reached for the bucket beside her futon and choked into it. Inuyasha rubbed his hand up and down her back in a soothing manor as he tried to make her feel better, it didn't however quite stop her from being sick.
When she eventually ran out of puke and relaxed back down on the futon, she looked up at Inuyasha and smiled, "I'm sorry that I keep doing that." she apologized, "It just isn't very comfortable when I try to hold it in."
"You shouldn't try to hold it in, just let it out and you'll feel much better." he smiled stroking her forehead.
"Yeah, but it does leave a disgusting taste in my mouth afterwards." she scowled as she tried not to swallow, "Gross!"
He chuckled slightly as he passed her a cup of water to get rid of the foul taste, she happily accepted it and gulped it down, "Don't drink it too quickly, you might get hiccups!" he warned.
"Hiccups? Please! That's a load of nonsense! I've never gotten hiccups from drinking water too quickly in my li..." she started before her sentence was cut short by a loud and violent hiccup.
"What did I tell you?" he grinned smugly as she pouted.
Kaede smiled and emptied the now hot water from the cooking pot into the small bath and walked over to Kagome in order to help her into the basin. However, she didn't have to do much as Inuyasha picked her up bridal style, undressed her from her loose ordinary village women's kimono and carefully placed her into the warm water. "I've got this, Kaede." he said turning to the old woman as Kagome relaxed in the liquid, "You can go back to Jirou and Rin now if you want to."
The old woman nodded and left through the door for her own home. She knew that Inuyasha would take care of his wife and make sure that no harm would come to her, after all she was safer with him than she was with anyone else.
Inuyasha knelt beside the bath and watched Kagome who had closed her eyes and was relaxing in the warm water, he smiled at her peaceful expression which much more pleasant that her vomiting or painful expressions.
She felt his gaze on her and opened her eyes, "What are you smiling about?" she asked quietly as she was losing her voice from all that her mouth had been through lately.
"Oh nothing really." he smiled, "I was just thinking how pretty you are."
She blushed and looked away making him chuckle, "No I'm not." she whispered shyly, "Not really."
"But you are! I don't tell you enough, you really are beautiful! Well I think that you are anyway."
Her blush deepened as she looked down into the bathwater shyly, "T-Thank you." she stuttered.
He grinned at her embarrassed reaction as he began to pour water over her hair and then rub it dry with one of the blankets that Kaede had brought with her earlier. Kagome giggled as he tickled her leading to him being drenched in the bath water that she had splashed at him, he spat out the the liquid that had flown into his open mouth and shook himself to dry off.
"You really are just like a dog." she laughed as he continued to shake the water from his hair and ears.
He grinned and made his ears dance for her making her squeal with delight and clap her hands, she then splashed him some more just to irritate him as he had just properly dried off; the water was now all over the floor and Inuyasha truly did look like a wet dog.
She laughed at his appearance before looking down at her big tummy to feel it, Inuyasha crawled closer to her and lightly rested his head against her stomach to listen.
"What are you doing?" she asked curiously. He laughed slightly just as she had finished her sentence, "Why are you laughing?" she asked.
He lifted his head and looked up at her, "It likes you." he smiled happily.
"It... does? How can you tell?"
"I can feel it's heartbeat." he replied leaning back down and pressing his ear to her stomach once again, "It likes the sound of your voice and your touch, in fact it's really happy in there. It already loves you a lot."
"Really?" she asked happily.
"Good job, Kagome. Good job."
Sesshomaru walked over the snowy turf beneath his feet in search of Kikyo, she was usually at the lake which bordered the lands so he decided to head there first, it was a short walk for a human but for a demon lord like him it would only take a matter of seconds to reach the destination.
Just as he had thought, Kikyo was stood at the edge of the frozen lake staring out into the whiteness as more snow fell and rested on the huge mirror. She looked up at the blank sky and held out her hand to catch a tiny silver snowflake which rested on her palm for a few seconds before melting because of her body heat. "I am fully aware that you are here." she said rather suddenly not even turning her head to face the dog demon, "Why do you insist on going for a silent approach every time?"
He had not intended to sneak up on her, if he had not wanted her to know that he was there then he wouldn't have allowed her to sense his presence. He walked and stood beside her, also staring out across the icy lake and into the clouded distance.
"It's beautiful isn't it?" she asked lost in the scenery, "The villagers call it Lake Serenity, because it's so calm and tranquil out here."
Sesshomaru remained silent like he usually would in a conversation as he continued to stare ahead.
"In fact, this lake reminds me a little of you." she smiled.
This caught his attention as he turned his head to face her and asked, "Why is that?"
"You are calm, composed, mysterious..." she answered as she knelt down and placed the palm of her hand onto the thick ice, "But you are also cold... Like me."
He gazed down at the priestess who's eyes were still fixed on the frozen water as she ran her fingers across it's surface. Kikyo wasn't a cold woman, she was caring, kind, strong and a loyal friend, she was also an excellent ally.
"But what lies beneath the hard icy surface of this lake? I imagine there are a lot of secrets deep down below the thick sheet of ice. And I bet that not many people know about these secrets because it has built up a strong and cold wall to keep everyone out. I do wish that the surface would melt just a little so that I could see what lies beneath, I want to see: I want it to let me in." she said calmly as she looked up at him meeting his gaze.
His heartbeat quickened slightly as his eyes widened a little at the meaning behind her words.
She rose to her feet still gazing into her eyes as she continued speaking, "I want for you to trust me, to be able to rely on me, to talk to me about... well anything that you wish to talk about; I want you to know that I care about you and I will always be here for you no matter what happens."
Sesshomaru couldn't believe what he was hearing though he liked most of the things that she was saying, even though his expression remained as secretive as ever only with a little more emotion behind his piercing eyes.
"I was wrong to begin with." she whispered, "I thought that you were a heartless monster who cared for nothing and killed simply because you were able to. But I was wrong..." she lifted her arm and placed her right hand onto his chest, "I can feel it. Beating away like the sound of the drums on a festival. I can feel that you have a heart."
He raised his hand and placed it over Kikyo's, closing his fingers around hers which caused her to have a reaction, "Do you not fear me?" he asked staring deep into her dark brown eyes.
"No. I do not." she answered firmly as she stared back intensely.
"But the sound of your own heartbeat betrays you. I can hear it from here, loud and clear."
"It is not pounding because I am afraid."
"Then why is it behaving so?"
She smiled, "Take a wild guess."
"...It seems I am more like my father than I had originally thought."
"I possibly do not entirely despise humans anymore. I know I do not despise you."
She giggled quietly, "That is good."
"In fact..." he started, "I may also have fallen for one."
Kikyo's eyes widened at his statement as she stared at him before she smiled and closed her eyes to whisper, "Luckily, I think that this human might have also fallen for you."
Her words made Sesshomaru's heart race faster than before as he pulled her closer towards him by her waist with the arm that he wasn't using to hold her hand, her eyes were still closed and she had parted her lips slightly. He lowered his head, closing the distance between them as he also closed his eyes and tightened his grip on her.
"Keep quiet, you insolent fools! Do you want to give us away!?" cried a voice that sounded like Jaken's from one of the snow-coated bushes, "If Lord Sesshomaru ever found out that we'd been spying on him like this he would have my head!"
"But Master Jaken, you are the one who is making all of the noise." came another voice that sounded like Rin's.
"Silence, you silly girl!"
"Shush!" hushed another that sounded like Shippo, "They'll hear us!"
"Silence as well, you little...!"
"SSSSHHHHHH!" hissed someone that must surely have been Kohaku.
Sesshomaru sighed, he couldn't get any privacy these days, well without being stalked, spied on or eavesdropped at least. Kikyo giggled and removed her hand from his chest and walked in the direction of the whispering, she then peered over the top of the bush to see Jaken, Rin, Kohaku and Shippo all sitting arguing in the snow. She coughed to get their attention and when they finally realized that she had seen them they cried out in fear.
"Oh darn! We've been discovered!" Shippo exclaimed.
"I told you this would happen." Kohaku sighed.
"Oh please don't kill me, oh please oh please!" Jaken sobbed as he lay on his knees begging for forgiveness, Rin looked away as she was so embarrassed to be seen with him.
That's the end of the first chapter, I hope you all enjoyed it! As much as I enjoy doing it, writing scenes between Sesshomaru and Kikyo is tricky because they are both so calm and concealed so it's hard to think of ways for them to interact and things for them to say; it's no where near as easy as doing scenes between Inuyasha and Kagome ^.^ Well thank you for reading, leave a review if you enjoyed! ~Happy