For the eighty-second time that day, the thought crossed Kagome's mind: I want to go home.

Chicago was supposed to be exciting, a fast-paced world where she'd assured herself that her life would finally begin. Now that they'd moved from their small town in Japan to the family restaurant in the United States city-since Grandfather could no longer care for it on his own-she'd told herself that this would be an adventure! After all, she spoke fluent English and knew much of the slang due to watching American shows and English-dubbed anime for practice.

What she didn't account for were the suffocating crowds, culture shock, and lack of friends. She knew she'd miss them, but making others in this drastically foreign atmosphere suddenly seemed so… daunting.

Especially when this school she now stood before looked like a prison and was covered in spray painted pictures she'd rather not describe.

Swallowing with a grimace, she scolded herself for judging it based on appearance and hiked her bag higher up on her shoulder. It couldn't be as bad as it looked; this was a place of learning.

Kagome didn't want to admit to herself that the thought sounded ridiculous.

Inside, some kids were loud, others clearly terrified. They ran past, making Kagome tense, and lockers slammed up and down hallways as if people were running into them. It was utter chaos.

A few days before, she'd received the schedule and made sure to locate each of her classes so that she'd be on time. The trouble was making it through armageddon.

Deciding the safest course of action was to avoid eye contact with everyone and focus on the route, she held her chin up and pushed the loudness out of her mind. Another right and a left should be her math class. The next hallway blockage spanned wall to wall, and she groaned in annoyance; she should really have searched for short cuts-

Her train of thought screeched to a halt when she heard the loud smacking and banging sound from the other side of the circle. Finally, Kagome registered that the crowd was chanting something in unison, louder by the second: "Fight, fight, fight, FIGHT, FIGHT-"

Automatically, she shoved her way to the edge of the circle where her mouth dropped open; a pair of boys tussled on the ground, one growling and slamming his fist into the other boy's face before the other snarled and slid out from under his opponent. He was about to send a fist back when she rushed in between them, shoved them apart, held up her hands, and shouted in a ringing voice across the hall, "STOP IT!"

The sight of someone hurting another, others around them laughing and doing nothing… it made her sick. Just how wrong all this was… it was unbearable. Kagome didn't know how they could all stand by and watch such victimization.

The corridor had instantly gone silent at her words, and both boys were too busy gaping at her to continue their little battle. One, clearly a youkai from his pointed ears, fangs, and tail, only stared with blue eyes and with his brown hair falling from a ponytail. A blue and gray headband wrapped around his forehead and the back of his head. The other… was probably also a youkai, with white hair tangled over his face, and his golden brown eyes narrowed. His leather jacket was a dark, striking red-the color of drying blood. Whereas the brunette one seemed shocked, the other seemed ready to fight her just as easily as if she were male. His triangular, white dog ears twitched and then laid flat against his head.

Way to go, Kagome, she internally moaned. First day and you're about to get slaughtered by a demon. With… really adorable doggy ears.

At least she'd satisfied her own conscience. And her last sight would be puppy ears. There were worse deaths.

"What the fuck," hissed the dog one, "do you think you're doing, bitch?"

She couldn't help but turn her nose up to him. "Considering how you seem to be part puppy, I'm going to assume that in that context, you only meant to call me 'woman'."

Kagome felt heat flood her face when the surrounding students, including the other demon boy, all laughed and the puppy boy sputtered. Smearing blood away from under his nose with a knuckle-split fist, the dog one advanced on her. "This is none of your business, new girl. You're gonna back off, walk away, and stay away, before you really make me angry."

A bolt of fear rattled through her; she'd never personally spoken to a youkai before. Demons were uncommon in her old town, though they weren't discriminated against. His darker aura, however, was freaking her out.

But then she hardened. He's just another idiot. His heritage makes no difference. Kagome stood her ground and held up a hand again so that it came in contact with his chest, holding him off. "Who do you think you are, threatening me? You're the one that's going to step away and get to class instead of brawling around like barbarians that are too stupid to solve problems with words!"

"Wh-why you-" he stammered, eyes wide and apparently too surprised to be able to continue.

Giving a last huff in his direction, she turned to the wolfish boy and said, "You get to class, before this starts up again and I call a teacher."

Slowly, a smirk stretched across his face. "As the lady wishes." He shot a last sneer at the boy he'd been fighting. "Next time I'll pound you into the dirt, mutt!"

"Oh, you're not getting away, you coward-" growled the dog youkai, but the other had already disappeared through the dispersing crowd.

And then she was left with the boy with the puppy ears, one hand still planted on his chest. That she now realized was rather muscled. She quickly drew her hand back as if burned, holding it to her heart and shifting awkwardly. "Uh… hi. Um. I'll just… go now."

Before he could respond, she turned and nearly smashed straight into another girl's front.

The pretty, brown-haired girl was taller than Kagome, dressed in a pink shirt with black and pink yoga pants. Instead of hostile as the rest of the people Kagome had so far encountered, the girl was giving a positively radiant smile. "That was amazing," said the girl with a laugh. "I've never seen anyone other than us and the Wolves try to come between those two morons! Hi, I'm Sango. You the new senior?"

Kagome blinked several times. "Uh, yeah. Hi. Thanks. Um, I'm Kagome…"

She then realized that 'us' referred to the boy that came out from behind Sango with a winning grin. He was admittedly rather attractive, black hair tied back in a small ponytail, purple shirt and blue jeans. His dark blue eyes were intense, and at the moment, rather playful. "Hello, miss. I'm Miroku; pleasure to make your acquaintance." Kagome squeaked when he stepped closer than she was comfortable with. "You are clearly brave. Those genes must be passed on. Will you bear my children- OW!"

Sango had smacked him in the head and pushed him away, apologizing, "Sorry about him. That's, em, how he greets women. I promise, he's not always one-hundred percent a creep. Sometimes he's like, ninety-five percent, on a lucky day."

"U-uh… it's fine…"

"Inuyasha," Sango said, looking over Kagome's shoulder. "I think you owe her an apology!"

Kagome realized they were talking to the dog boy, who was raking his hair back into a straighter style down his back. They were friends with this guy?!

Inuyasha only glared. "Keh. Yeah, not happening. I was about to destroy that asshole once and for all and she just had to butt in!"

Ignoring his rude stubbornness, Kagome asked Sango, "So, Wolves? Are they, like… a gang?"

Sango nodded. "Yeah, that guy, Koga, is their leader. Their territory is around this area, unless they lose it to Naraku's gang. Koga and Inuyasha… well they never really got along. But they both hate Naraku, so at least they can man-bond about that."

"Is he part of a different gang?" She jerked her thumb behind her to indicate the dog boy.

Sango snorted. "Gang of three, maybe. He, Miroku, and I… well, we look out for each other. Not a gang, really. Just trying not to, you know, die."

Miroku shot a warning glance to Inuyasha, who was scowling. "You're lucky Koga has too much pride to make all the Wolves beat the crap out of you at once."

"Keh. I could take 'em, no sweat."

"Sure," snorted Kagome. "Says the guy that barely held his own with one of them."

"I was just warming up, bitch!"

"Stop calling me that! And anyway, your jaw and eye look pretty bruised up…" Kagome reached into the side pockets of her bag, pulling out her bottle filled with ice-water. She then drew out some kleenexes, with which she dabbed away the blood on his face lightly while putting the cold bottle against the bruising.

Kagome began to feel awkward again as they all just stared at her uncomprehendingly.

Jerking out of his bewilderment, Inuyasha quickly shoved her hands away, face nearly scarlet. "What are you doing, woman?"

She narrowed her eyes, tossing the used tissue into the nearest trashcan and crossing her arms. "Well, excuse me for trying to help. What, you just expect me to walk away when you're all beaten up?"

"Um. YEAH."

"If you wanted me to be a jerk, you could've just said so," she snapped, putting away her water bottle. "Fine. I'm going to class. Have fun with your black eye and attitude problems, puppy boy."

The last thing she heard from them was Miroku's laughter and Sango scolding Inuyasha for being an ass.

"Do you need a place to sit? You could come at our table."

The heaven-sent question came in the end of the period before lunch, from the strikingly beautiful girl that had just sat next to her throughout her language class. This Kikyo had made her feel comfortable, unlike many of her other classes. Kagome was lucky enough to have Miroku and Sango give her a smile and offer her a seat in two classes, but in two others, she knew no one other than Kikyo, now.

Kagome wasn't used to talking to obviously popular girls like Kikyo; her midnight-colored hair trailed down her back, elegantly straight, and she looked to be Japanese as well. Her face was sculpted to smooth perfection, eyes dark and haunting. Her casual, black dress was classy, flats cute and a mysterious, black and purple bandana was tied about her pale, thin wrist. The spider-shaped pendant on her neck was a bit creepy, but she was certainly nice enough, so Kagome instantly answered, "That would be awesome! Thank you."

Kikyo only smiled and led the way from the classroom. Luckily, Kagome had brought her own lunch so that she didn't have to brave the line of shoving and cursing students scrambling for food. Their table was welcoming enough. She was already used to people here eyeing her up and down as if determining if she was a threat, which she brushed off as a consequence of living in the bad part of town. But after they did so, they offered smiles of their own and waved her into a seat.

For the most part, Kagome kept to herself and listened to the conversations from the other girls. Kikyo didn't say much, but Kagome soon found herself growing uncomfortable with…

"There was another fight in the hall today," scoffed the girl to her right, twirling a spoon in her yogurt. "A youkai and the hanyo again."

"At least Koga knows when to back off. The half-breed is just a freak in every way so far."

Kagome frowned.

"Yeah, Inuyasha is lucky that he's not dead yet, not that he'd be missed-"

"That's not nice."

Kagome was really getting sick of the shocked stares.

"What?" the girl asked.

"I said that's not nice," muttered Kagome."You shouldn't say that about someone."

Making a sour face, the girl that had spoken snapped, "Well, if you don't like it, new girl, you don't have to be here."

Internally, she winced. At this rate, she'd have no friends be that one girl that eats lunch in the bathroom.

Externally, she tilted up her chin and stood. "You're absolutely right."

Carrying her lunch bag close to her chest, she marched across the cafeteria. She tried to ignore the eyes following her and mutterings. She was making enemies left and right. She'd put up a brave face for a while, but now her hands were shaking with the stress of just how new everything was, how she was alone, and how all she wanted to do was get back to Japan where her friends laughed about silly things like boys and anime and-

A rough hand settled on her shoulder, and she jumped with a strangled shriek.

"Calm down, spaz," snarled a familiar voice, and at her side she saw Inuyasha, golden eyes flashing.

This only made her heart accelerate; what did he want? Was he going to retaliate for her interruption earlier? He was certainly at least fifty times stronger than her, so fighting back was impossible. Maybe she could distract him and then run?

"Will you cut that out?" he hissed as they exited the cafeteria toward wherever he was leading. "Fear smells gross. I'm not gonna hurt you, stupid."

"O-oh," was her only response, gulping thickly. This boy could smell fear? Kagome didn't think his dog traits could go that far. "Um, where are we-?"

The sound of harsh laughter cut her off, followed by the slam of a body into a locker and someone gasping with pain. She and Inuyasha spun to the hallway they'd been about to pass by, to see a pair of boys holding a smaller one up to a locker by his shirt. The boy was even smaller than Kagome, red hair and tail poofy and up on end displaying youkai origins.

Inuyasha grumbled. "Doesn't take 'em long, does it?" He looked away to keep walking.

"Hey!" Kagome grabbed his arm and tugged. "We have to go help him!"

"Why should I? The kid can learn to fight for himself. None of my business."

With a scowl, she shoved his arm back at him. "Fine, then. Be a jerk. I'll go help him myself."

The dog boy only scoffed. "You don't stand a chance. Those two are demons in Naraku's gang, the Thunder Brothers. They'll snap your pathetic little body like a twig. You can't go over there."

"Watch me."

His eyes widened and he reached out just as she stormed away. Marching right up to the pair of laughing boys, she said loudly, "Let him go!"

The victim's terrified yet angry gaze turned to her in surprise, and the two did stop, raising eyebrows at her. One had a dark braid down his back, and would have been attractive if he weren't an asshole. The other was reptilian in form, with a head like a white snake. The one with hair smirked. "Why should we? You gonna stop us?"

"I-if I have to," she said, the 'I'm screwed' alarm bells again ringing in her mind. Kagome clenched her fists by her sides. Perhaps she'd have time to reach in her bag to use one of her textbooks as a weapon-

"Now that's something I'd like to see." They dropped their prey, and the boy with the braid began to step towards her. "I like a little action in a woman before I-"

A clawed fist slammed into demon's face, cutting off his speech and sending him crashing into the lockers. Inuyasha was there, holding a hand to the Thunder Brother's throat and growling, "Why don't you pick on someone your own species?"

"Inuyasha," she breathed in relief, rubbing away the anxiety in her chest.

"Take the kid, the hallway where we were, a right, and a left," he responded, fending off the second brother with an elbow to his face. "You're gettin' in my way!"

Kagome detested the idea of him fighting more, but this time he was defending the poor freshman boy, and so she nodded. "Come on!"

The little demon was all too happy to race after her, taking Inuyasha's directions until they made it to a door labeled "Roof". At this point, she turned and offered a quick smile. "Hi! I'm Kagome. Stay until I come back - I've got a dog demon to drag here."

"Thank you for saving me," the boy said, big eyes shining. "I'm Shippo!"

"Nice to meet you, Shippo!" she called over her shoulder as she ran back to the scene. Inuyasha had knocked the reptilian one unconscious already; he was now fighting the other in rapid hand-to-hand combat, facing her direction but too focused to see her. Unsure of what else to do, Kagome drew the heaviest book she had out of her bag, tiptoed up to the enemy demon, and smacked him with all her strength in the back of the head.

To her dismay, it only made him stumble, likely mostly in surprise as he whipped around to see her. However, this gave Inuyasha the chance to kick him in the head, after which the Thunder Brother finally dropped like a rock.

There was a heavy silence filled with a few pants. Finally, their eyes met, his blazing and hers hesitant. Finally, he just shook his head. "You… you're crazy. Why the hell would you run into that? And why in the name of all things holy would you come back?! I can't believe you thought a textbook would take out a demon!"

"What kind of question is that?" she protested as he grabbed her arm and tugged her off towards Shippo. "I can't just walk away from someone that's going to get hurt, or let you get all beat up! And I didn't exactly have any other weapon!"

"Keh. Pathetic human sentiment." His swift footsteps were followed by the clumsy clatter of her sneaker-encased feet. "No way those losers could put a scratch on me. You're gonna get yourself killed around here. You're living in West Englewood and anyone who doesn't have a gun or at least a switchblade is a moron."

"Isn't that illegal?" Kagome whispered, eyes wide.

He rolled his eyes so obnoxiously that the whole hall probably spun. "Isn't that illegal?" he mimicked in a ridiculous, slurry, high voice. "What are you, five? Of course it's fucking illegal. Bad guys don't give a shit about what's illegal, stupid. Bad guys get illegal guns. If you're gonna protect yourself from a bad guy, you'll need something too."

"Well, I seemed to have you," she said testily, shooting a glare. "My name is not stupid. It's Kagome. Ka-go-me. Just because it's Japanese doesn't mean it's hard to pronounce."

"I'm not your guard dog, and I can speak Japanese, dammit," he muttered, pulling her to the left. "Now stop being difficult and get to the safe spot so that I don't have to keep dealing with your ass. In fact, that pervy monk would probably love to deal with it himself."

"What?" she squeaked, not even realizing that they'd bumped back into Shippo and Inuyasha was pushing the creaky door open to a set of metal stairs. They were herded up there impatiently, where they came upon a gray sky and chilly breeze. Buildings rose above the horizon in the distance like demons leering down at her, while broken-down apartment complexes, cracked and dull houses, and stores with barred windows depressingly scattered the concrete and asphalt ground.

However, she felt intense relief when she saw the other students from before, Sango and Miroku. They gave bewildered looks, but smiled and waved at them all the same. With a tentative smile, Kagome approached with Shippo at her side. She looked over her shoulder to see that Inuyasha had wandered off towards the other side of the roof, sitting cross-legged on the edge and staring off into the gray skyline. She frowned, but continued and sat by the others.

"Good to see you again, Kagome," Miroku greeted. "How did you come across our little hiding place?"

Kagome blinked. "W-wha… You didn't tell Inuyasha to invite me?"

They appeared scandalized. Sango said, "You're definitely welcome, and we didn't ask you because we saw you had a seat. No, we didn't ask him. He really brought you here? With…?" They were eyeing Shippo.

Kagome stammered with a laugh, "Oh, I'm being rude! This is Shippo; we just met in the hall when Inuyasha saved him from the Thunder Brothers. Shippo, this is Sango and Miroku."

"Hi!" Shippo said cheerfully. "Thanks again, for that. You saved me too! I could take 'em, but… em… it would've taken a while…"

Kagome brushed off his lie with a smile, and then turned back to the other two. After having welcomed Shippo warmly, they were staring uncomprehendingly in Inuyasha's direction. "Is Inuyasha... ill?" Miroku questioned, looking genuinely concerned.

"I can hear you," said boy warned from afar.

Sango brushed this off. "He's never done something like that. Did you poison him or something? It's almost like… he was nice."

"Don't make me come over there and rip out your intestines!"

Kagome decided to be deaf to Inuyasha's voice. "You say that as if he's not your friend."

Miroku shrugged. "He insists that he is not. We three simply protect each other and sit here for lunch; we're not really friends with him, per say."

"Like I'd be friends with you human twerps," Inuyasha's spoke up again, never moving from his spot.

"You're half human yourself," Sango reminded him, eyes narrowing. Inuyasha only scoffed in response.

"Half? Oh, that's why they called him hanyo. That's interesting," Kagome said conversationally.

"Indeed," Miroku agreed. "It makes him as violent as a demon and as stubborn as a human."

"I will rip off your arms, monk."

She was quickly learning that Inuyasha was full of creative and empty threats.

Taking out her bento box and shifting into a more comfortable position on the cold concrete, she continued, "Why does he call you 'monk'?"

Miroku waved a hand. "I was raised by Buddhist monks. I don't plan to be one, but I am plenty religious."

"Except for when you're grabbing a girl's butt," Sango muttered, taking an aggressive bite from her sandwich.

Kagome scooted a bit farther away from him. "So… why are you guys on the roof, exactly?"

"Avoiding gangs," Sango said through a full mouth. "Here, you're either a Spider or a Wolf. You've seen the bandanas? The colors coordinate with a certain gang. Spiders have black and purple, while the Wolves are blue and gray."

Kagome had indeed noticed the pattern of bandanas, wrapped around hair, ankles, wrists, belts, like Kikyo.

"We wanna stay neutral," Sango went on, "but that gets you a lot of harassment. It's not as bad here as it is in the movies or on the news-other than Inuyasha, who has a history with Koga, we are not his enemies and he doesn't try to hurt anyone at school out of temper… but still, better to keep it just us and up here in about the freshest air we can get."

"Even those girls I was sitting with? They didn't seem like gang members."

"Those were all Spiders," Miroku said darkly. "Naraku's group. We planned to warn you of the situation later."

"Well, some of them certainly were rude," Kagome muttered. "Kikyo seemed nice enough, though."

Miroku choked a laugh, almost spitting out the water he'd been trying to drink. "That girl… Ahaha, better keep your distance with that one," he advised.

Kagome jumped and nearly spilled her rice when Inuyasha appeared, hopping down into a crouch beside her. The other two gave him smirks, though she'd expected them to be more surprised. Shippo seemed to agree, frowning in confusion at the half-demon.

"Don't be talkin' shit about people you don't know," Inuyasha snarled, clenching clawed hands.

Miroku only continued to look smug. "So predictable. Gracing us with your presence as soon as your lady love is brought up-"

Sensing how Inuyasha was about to pounce, Kagome threw out an arm to stop him. Her eyes trailed to his, and she could help a smile and a small giggle. "You have a crush on Kikyo? I would not have expected that-"

"I-I do not!" he barked, curling up into his crouch. "I-I just… It's not her fault! He's holding something against her! I know her and I know she wouldn't be a Spider or be Naraku's woman if he wasn't holding something over her head!"

"You have a crush on the gang leader's girlfriend," Kagome said, voice flat. Of course, it did make a little sense. If the boy was going to admire anyone, it would be a graceful beauty like Kikyo. He probably had that admiration among many other boys.

"I told you I didn't, woman!"

"Speak in kinder words to a lady, Inuyasha," Miroku scolded, and then ignored Inuyasha's colorful answer. "He's not over her; they dated sophomore year. Then she moved away for junior, and when she came back this last summer, she was a Spider and Naraku's woman."

"Bullshit," Inuyasha muttered, the color of his face matching his bright, leather jacket, "That's over. But I can save her."

Sango sighed in exasperation. "She's avoided you for over a year. Good luck with being her knight in bloody armor."

"I still can't believe how someone was actually willing to date Inuyasha," Shippo said innocently. Kagome couldn't help but agree.

Shippo instantly got a fist in the head. "Shut up, you little pansy."

Kagome slapped Inuyasha's hand away from the poor freshman. "Leave him alone. I'm honestly surprised that you'd have feelings for someone too. Especially with a 'human twerp'."

"Aw, he's a total softie, deep down," Miroku cooed.

"Miroku, you are so full of shit and I'll beat you into the ass you came out of-"

"At least, I pray that he is truly a softie every day so that I can be granted patience to deal with him." Miroku looked back to Kagome, unfazed. "He's right, though. We all know what he's holding over her. Just like what he's holding over the rest of his damn gang."

When Kagome tilted her head, Sango explained in a grimace, "Drugs. He has a special recipe that he's been working on probably his whole half-demon life, mixed with demon energies-calls it Shikon, or Shikon Jewel. It's said to get you higher for longer, give you a boost in strength and speed, and dead a lot quicker. So, of course, it's all over the streets. He only gives it to gang members, with a price. Super addictive. He lures people into his creepy web by offering a little bit to people he wants in. They can't stop after only one fix."

"We ought to warn you," Miroku cut in darkly. "The drug can be ingested many ways. Don't accept food or drink from anyone, or from a table. If you see something being smoked, stay far away. If you see a pink, gem-like object, that's its form before they crush it into powder. Either stay away or take it and destroy it."

"Or you'll get just as stuck in the web," Sango finished.

"That's terrible," Kagome whispered. "Thank you for telling me. So… Kikyo got addicted?"

"She's not a stoner!" Inuyasha shouted.

"I never said she was. He clearly tricks people. She's a victim, if anything," Kagome reasoned in her calmest voice.

"Well, she did," Sango sighed. "All the Spiders are. And the withdrawal will kill you without medical assistance, and they can't get that without getting arrested, so he controls all of them. He's a disgusting person."

"Sounds like it."

"Well." Miroku stretched, arms and face towards the sky. "We tend side mostly with the Wolves when necessary. We all have rather… personal, vendettas against Naraku. So does Koga. The Wolves are brutal and far too violent, but at least they've sworn against drugs. They say any kind of drug messes with their senses, but they don't protect anyone other than their own from Naraku's addictive wrath, so they're not particularly nice either."

Kagome put down her bento box; the whole horrifying conversation had rather ruined her appetite. "Can't we tell the police?"

"Oh, they know." Inuyasha scowled, which wasn't much of a change from his normal expression. "Bastards. They can't figure out where the drop off and distribution spots are, much less the drug lab. Some of them are probably paid off, or addicted themselves."

"The police try hard," Sango defended. "They've followed known members, done harsh questioning… but Naraku is very clever. Inuyasha just doesn't like the police for… personal reasons."

Inuyasha didn't elaborate on these 'personal reasons'. "Whatever. They can't save Kikyo like I can, anyway."

The group fell silent, and Kagome wondered if they were all thinking the same thing.

You can't save her without her getting arrested and put into a psych ward for rehabilitation.

Clearing her throat, Kagome put on a pleasant voice, trying to change the depressing subject. "So, em, you said you speak Japanese, Inuyasha. How did you learn?"

"Oh, that's right." Sango gave her a smile. "I wanted to ask about your accent. Are you from Japan, then?"

"Yes." Kagome nodded. "My family just moved here to help with my grandfather's business. He's getting quite old, you see. Luckily, I can speak English well enough."

"Your English is impeccable," Miroku complimented. "We are glad to have you here. Strangely enough, dear Sango and I are of Japanese origin. We both speak a bit. And he… honestly, I didn't know you spoke Japanese, Inuyasha."

Everyone looked to him, and he grimaced, muttering, "I only lived there most of my life."

"Seriously?" Miroku laughed, shaking his head. "You are a true mystery, my friend."

"I'm not your friend."

This rolled off of the monk's back, as always. It was Sango that went on. "Well, demons have extremely long life spans, even a half demon. I've never quite had the courage to ask, but… how old are you? You might've lived there for quite a long time, right?"

Kagome thought he'd simply scoff and refuse to answer more personal questions, but his 'older than you' pride apparently won out. "I'm a few hundred."

Simultaneously, everyone choked on air. "Few hundred?!" Kagome gasped. "How many is a few?!"

"Wouldn't you like to know?" he said smugly.

Miroku seemed to have recovered. "In any case, demons age much slower, as far as mental maturity and body. At this point, he's just as mature as us. In human mental and physical years, Inuyasha is about eighteen. Or, at least, that's what his license says."

She could certainly believe the part about how his mental age was no higher than theirs. If not much, much lower.

"What've you been doing, going through my wallet?!"

"If you're a few hundred," Kagome wondered. "Why are you suddenly in high school? Here and now?"

Inuyasha shifted to his cross-legged sit. "I was bored. Lots of demons decide to get an education whenever the hell they want and travel wherever the hell they want. School turned out to be pretty boring too, other than the fistfights in the hall that some people like to go mess up for me."

"Let it go already," groaned Kagome. "It was dangerous and ridiculous."

"Your face is ridiculous!"

"What are you?" Kagome mimicked in a deep, whiny voice. "Five?"

Kagome felt a spark of triumph when Inuyasha was rendered speechless and the other three burst out laughing.

Hello fantastical readers!

This story has been long in the works and I've so excited to show it to you! It's my first time writing Inuyasha, because if you've read my stuff before, you know I write too much Fairy Tail. XD So I'm a bit nervous, but I hope you guys like it. Trying to stay as true to the characters as possible. By the way, the only other ships in here are Mirsan and (mentioned) Kogayame.

THE ENTIRE STORY IS DEDICATED TO (for what it's worth) AKELA-NAKAMURA, for being the most amazing beta and staying up with me to ridiculous hours to talk about fanfiction and Inuyasha and random portions of our weird lives. She's an amazing friend and this story wouldn't exist without her. Also an amazing writer, so go check out her stories, like one of my favorite fanfictions of all time, Natsu the Friendly Demon.

Reviews and critiques are not only welcome, but make my day! A penny for your thoughts? Thank you for reading! See ya next week Wednesday for Chapter 2!

Credit for the image I used for the fic goes to the amazing evartandadam on tumblr. She has gorgeous art-check it out!