Declaimer: I do not own Inuyasha.
"It's where we go, it's where we'll be. I know if I'm on to you, you must be on to me."
It was a grey day, like it usually tended to be in her small village. The grey atmosphere usually didn't bother her, much less during a winter season. If anything, she found it to be dull at times. This evening it was different though, the grey came to be heavier and almost suffocating for her. The winter suddenly felt as if it was teasing and invading the inside of her family's cabin. It was as if the weather and atmosphere knew that she might be losing her mother that night, and they laughed and mocked her family together.
Her mother was dying. Her groans through the cabin and her struggling pained body made it all that obvious.
Her father was pretty blunt about it; he stated this fact as if he was stating it was that time of the week he was going off to hunt. There was no bitterness, no anger, no remorse, or joy in his tone. It was just hollow. That's who her father tended to be though, and it's one of the few details she knew of her father besides his hunting skills, being the provider of the family, and a well respected man through their village. But that was it. That was all she could possibly say about her father during her six years of living. Her mother was possibly the only woman who would know more depth when it came to this man. But she would probably be the last now that she was slipping away for the sake of her sibling's birth.
The idea of a baby brother excited her; she even counted the days of when her mother would finally give birth to the new member of the family, now it was bitter thought to think about. This baby was the one who is taking away her mother from her life to early. She even thought of it as a selfish being.
"Kagome," Her father's voice snapped her from her thoughts. She scurried from her corner of the cabin to his side instantly. From the corner of their cabin, she couldn't really see her fathers face all too well since his back was to her, but now that she was next to him she was shocked to say the least at what she saw. There on his face was fear, her father was scared. For once, in Kagome's eyes, her father looked human.
"Yes papa?" Kagome asked. She couldn't hide the slight tremble in her small voice.
Her father didn't look at her, he was in deep thought. As if debating and calculating something in his head. He turned his head to her and studied his six year old daughter that seemed to feel like an uncomfortable eternity for her. He hunched somewhat in great stress and grief and looked at his wife's pained and sweat coated figure.
"I cannot leave your mother Kagome, I'm afraid if I do she'll slip away if uncared for." He dabbed her mother's sleek wet forehead with a piece of fabric. "What I will ask of you, you must do with caution Kagome," He kept looking at her mother as he told her this. "The village midwife is already assisting another women in labor, the only other person who can possible prevent death or a risky birth for your sibling is your grandmother Kikyo, Kagome-" He paused and did that in thought thing again. She tried to pinpoint what it was her father was in such a debate about. "I need you to go to grandmother's cabin and bring her here." He finally faced his daughter. Concern laced his face heavily, and she understood why. That meant Kagome would have to go through the woods alone. Not a place for a child like her.
"I will go then papa."
Silence bestowed upon the two heavily. After a few seconds, her father gave her one firm nod and stood up to get her ready for the cold outdoors and the woods. He handed her her small brown boots, mittens and helped her into her red hooded cloak, which she hoped to grow into in the future. He handed her a small woven basket with apples to give to her grandmother and to use if they would need to bring any herbs back with them. Before she was set to leave her father halted her by her small shoulder.
"Here." He took his sheathed dagger from his hip and placed it in her basket. She couldn't help but look up at him with uncertainty. He gave a firm look in reply.
"Just incase, do not hesitate to use it if necessary, and whatever you do Kagome, do not get distracted and walk straight to your destination. " They looked at each other for a while. Suddenly neither wanted her to go through the woods alone, but they both wanted her mother to see another day. She let out a shaky breath and nodded; she then put her hood over her head and made her way out the door.
The snow and cold air were suddenly biting at her as she stood outside after taking few steps. She stared at the woods that seemed to be daring her to walk in it. She looked around her village before proceeding, maybe someone could join her. But it was empty, not one person was outside, and who would be during this cold afternoon? Not even Koga, who was her very close friend, was outside looking for her.
She let a white puff of air out and proceeded to the woods. You see, there was a myth, or more of a belief that lied in the woods. Besides animals lurking in the woods, there is something darker lying there. Some named it the Wolf; others claim it is a demon. Some have been said to go in and feel a heavy presence gnawing at them, few have actually disappeared after going into the woods. This is why the hunters of her village go in groups when it comes to the woods, caution never hurts. What Kagome is doing though, is what one hunter alone would not dare to do.
After a few steps into the woods Kagome felt something there, a presence. Her whole being halted and slowly looked around the woods that were now becoming dark. She was only greeted with a heavy silence and the faint sound of the moaning wind. She could not help but feel a chill go up her spine, she began shaking a bit, and not entirely because of the cold. The temptation to run back to her cabin was starting to overtake courageous mind set, but she quickly shook it off, she began nibbling her bottom lip which was a nervous habit of hers and proceeded deeper into the woods.
Kagome distracted herself from the thoughts of the myths and animals in the woods and focused on the crunching sound her small feet made on the snow. She thought about her mother, how she would scold her when she would nibble her lip, how she and her spent days deciding names for her sibling and if she was doing a bit better or shed her last breath. She thought about how for once she actually saw her father show some sort of emotion. She also thought about how her grandmother Kikyo was doing and how much she had missed her and her amazing desserts.
These entire thoughts distracted Kagome from her surroundings and made her trip over a vine that was faintly popping out of the snow. The red apples and dagger that were in her basket were now sprawled out on the white snow. She groaned and inwardly scowled at herself. One of the first things her father tells her not to do, get distracted, and it's basically one of the first things she does. Not only that, she's wasting time on arriving to her grandmothers by having to pick up all the apples and dagger over her clumsiness. She quickly regains the apples and dagger and her basket, but she could have sworn she had more apples in her basket?
"I think you're missing one."
She froze and the color drained from her face. Fear suddenly stills her and binds her where she is placed. Her body feels heavy and hot, her breathing is cut almost completely. Her hand's start to slightly tremble and she can't help but think that the voice she hears right behind her is the presence she felt right when she walked into the forest. She can't fathom how or why, but as if her body has mind of its own, it stands and ever so slowly faces the presence behind her.
A man, or whatever he was, stands there with her missing apple in his hand. Long silver hair is splayed around him, standing out like the snow on his black raggedy vest and blouse, gold eyes penetrate her and canine ears are pointed towards her as if hearing her every movement. He is tall and certainly holds great strength; she has to look up at him such as she would at the trees, his claws and fangs don't go unnoticed, adding a dangerous feel to him. Slowly he takes a step forward and she can't help but flinch back a step herself. He keeps looking at her with a predatory gleam; he slowly smirks and throws the apple a few inches in the air to catch it again.
"What is a little girl like your self doing in these big scary woods on her own?"
She doesn't dare to reply… or more like she can't. He chuckles at this, making him unbearably terrifying in her eyes.
"Ah, so you don't talk to strangers I see," He said almost mockingly and takes a few steps forward, his eyes become more dark as a deep beastly rumble emits from him. "But, these are my woods, so care to explain why you are walking through them?" She can't help but start breathing faster, her white puffs of air somewhat blind her vision, or it's possibly her own fear.
"My grandmother lives in the woods." Kagome mumbles, she hardly even heard herself but it seems the man heard her clearly, who she wants nothing more then to disappear.
"Oh, so you're heading to the old women's cabin? Mm, your grandmother you say?" He asks with genuine curiosity. She quickly nods her head. He replies by studying her up and down and casually starts walking around her as if taking in every detail of her being. She cringes at this and couldn't help but feel like a prey under a predator's heavy stare.
"What is your name?"
"Can I go-"
"What is your name?" He asks more firmly.
"Kagome." She answers weakly as she squeezes her eyes tightly shut to prevent the tears of utter fear that are forming to flow out.
"What a peculiar name... I will call you little Red," He smirks devilishly. "Mine is Inuyasha, or you know, the Wolf, delighted to meet you." He's toying with her fear. The Wolf is toying with her.
The myth that had been around for centuries is now standing in front of her. The creature, the wolf, the demon surrounds her.
She was right, he was no man.
He suddenly comes to a halt in front of her and ever so slowly kneels to be at her eyelevel, as if he knows the fear he emits within her. She keeps her eyes tightly shut as she feels his gaze penetrating her, his warm breath fanning her, his presence almost engulfing her own indicating just how close he now is to her. She hears him inhale her scent deeply; her breathing becomes harsher and harsher each second she stands under this man's, this DEMONS presence. She realizes she never truly knew fear. That is until now.
"Tell me your age girl."
"Six sir." Her trembling hands begin to fiddle with her red cloak. The nibbling on her bottom lip becomes harsher to the point that she bites it and can taste the copper flavor of her blood.
"Six you say, it is rather obvious," He mumbles this more to himself, he then stays silent. He's analyzing something about her answer and she can't really comprehend what it is and to be honest, she really doesn't want to know.
"Look at me little Red," His tone is dark. She doesn't want to. She really doesn't want to, but what if she doesn't? What if she turns out to be like those who disappear and never come out of the forest? She obeys and hesitantly opens her eyes, looking up weakly at him like a child would at a monster. They shimmer with the tears that she refused to spill. The wolf finds this wickedly endearing.
He's so close, it's almost impossible not to take in the details of his face, his strong jaw line, his pointed chin, the specks in his amber eyes that seem to look almost feline like from up close, and one of his fangs that are picking out from his full lips that are made to kill and possibly devour. His scent consumes her; she knows there is no way of escaping him.
"Do you fear me?" He asked, smiling. His head tilts a bit as he asks her.
She starts looking anywhere else besides him, her tears are now impossible to hold back and they flow freely on her rose tinted cheeks. What does he want from her?
"Why do you cry?" He traces a clawed hand on her cheek. She flinches slightly at his touch.
"Your eyes," Her lips trembled, out of all the things she could say…
"My eyes?" His face still holds a dark expression, yet genuine curiosity.
"They are not like the normal peoples eyes,"
"Ah," Entertainment laces his tone and chuckles a bit. "Well, they are so I can see you better little Red."
"And you're ears..."
"To obviously hear all that is you and around you little Red," A wicked smile graces his lips now.
She now peers at his lips, where a fang pokes out of his grin. Her voice almost gets caught in her throat. "…And your teeth,"
"Let's play a game little Red," His large rough hand completely covers her small shoulder, she staggered a bit back, but failed to move too far since his strength was so dominating. She had no doubt he could feel the uncontrollable shaking of her body. A feeling of dizziness was now consuming her.
"Take it as a racing game, if you get to your grandmothers before me, you get to keep this apple which I will be handing back to you right now, but…" A wicked gleam comes upon his demonic eyes. She gulps at this. "If I make it there before you, I get to keep your apple and even better, you." Once again her breathing is cut off, she has the feeling she's about to pass out at anytime.
"There is a hitch though, you see even if you do win our little racing game, from now on even when you forget I exist while your living in your village, I will always be watching you little Red," His eyes flashed almost dangerously. Dread hit her face; he chuckled darkly at this. "And in a decade I promise you little Red, I will get you, right now you are too young to know why and why I lay this on you, but I promise you," He pets her trembling head as if she is his personal pet. "All will make sense by then child." She flinched at the painful realization; there was no real escape from this demon, even if she did make it out of the woods.
Why, why? She couldn't fathom why her, why not do what he intended now? She hoped to never know, to make it out and never encounter this demon again. He levered himself off the ground and dominantly towered over her small young figure.
"Little Red," The nickname became an endearment on his tongue. He raised his clawed hand that held her missing apple, indicating she takes it. "Once you take the apple, the game starts and you run, understand?" Without hesitation she snatches the apple off his hand and runs.
She runs, gasping for air and ignores the seeping pain on her side. The snow soaks into her boots and the cold air whips her face to the point where it stings. She does not dare to stop, for literally her life depends on her to keep running. Never has she hated a game so much. She looks back to see if he is anywhere near her trail; he is nowhere to be seen. She lets out a desperate sigh of relief and what seemed to be like forever she makes it to her grandmother's cabin. The wolf man isn't anywhere in sight.
But it hits her like a pile bricks that possibly the wolf, demon, or whichever of the two he was, had no interest in playing. He let her win.
Desperately she began banging at her grandmother door, she did not care that her basket fell once again from her hold.
Her grandmother finally opened the door with great concern as she saw desperate relief wash over her grandchild's tear stricken face.
"Kagome! Whatever happened why-"Before the elder women could finish, her grandchild embraced her with such force that the cold that clung to her body seeped through her dress and her untamed trembling was greatly obvious.
"Come child," Kikyo picked up her grandchild and studied her surroundings to see where the cause of the little girls fear came from. She saw nothing and hurriedly headed inside.
Both were unaware of the penetrating stare that lurked in the woods.
AN: Not sure how I feel about this one, but I had to get it off my chest. Don't plan on making this story too long! Hopefully you guys like it, and I'll hopefully have the next chapter done soon (: Especially with some feedback *wink wink (reviews)*. Feel free to point out any grammar and spelling errors! I literally did this over night, SO there might be a ton. Have mercy on me!