Disclaimer : I do not own InuYasha, or any of the other characters. They all belong to Rumiko Takahashi, who is a goddess. However, if I did own InuYasha, you can bet I certainly would not have the time to write fanfiction . . . I'd be busy doing other things *grin*.

AN: Just a real quick one. This is my first one shot fan fic. It's a product of getting to bed to damn early and not being able to sleep, then deciding to think about my favorite anime in an attempt to come up with some ideas for my ongoing fic, Starlight and Shadows, and my other one, Watcher. So, Read, Review, tell me what you think, and if you haven't already, go read my other stories and do the same. Hopefully, you won't be disappointed.

Blood of the Innocent

Kagome stood guard carefully over her fallen companions, watching the fierce battle raging before her, looking for an open shot with her bow. InuYasha and Sesshoumaru were holding up well against Naraku. Both sides suffered wounds, although none so grave as to warrant major attention yet. Sango, behind Kagome, hovered over the fallen Miroku, who's wind tunnel had accidentally sucked in too many of Naraku's hell wasps. The exterminator herself bled heavily from several deep lacerations, but the biggest wound was in her heart.

Her brother's body lay not far away, finally freed of Naraku's evil influence by her own hand. Sango wept bitter tears of relief that her brother could now rest in peace, but she now faced losing one of her friends . . . and the man she loved. Kirara lay curled in a ball nearby, nursing serious wounds of her own. She could go nowhere near Naraku without chancing him absorbing her into himself, and so was out of that battle entirely.

Kagome winced as Naraku landed another hit on InuYasha, who staggered under the blow, but kept his feet under him. Sesshoumaru took the opening in Naraku's defenses to land a solid blow to his chest area, his poison claws blasting a hole in what should have been Naraku's heart. A glittering object blew from the area and Naraku screamed in rage.

'Naraku's shards!' Kagome thought, and darted across the wide open space to snatch them up.

"Kagome look out!" InuYasha shouted, as Naraku turned to take a swipe at her. He was too late, and saw the girl go flying as the hit landed. He charged, catching her in midair before she could hit the trees. "Damn it, Kagome! I told you to stay out of the way!"

"I have his shards, InuYasha. Finish him off." she whispered as he set her on her feet near their companions. He looked at her, his amber eyes glittering, and quickly pulled her against him in a passionate kiss.

"I'll be right back." he whispered against her lips, and charged back into battle. Kagome stood, stunned, looking after him. She pressed her fingers to her lips in disbelief.

"He . . . he kissed me?!" Shaking her head to clear it, she stared down at the jewel fragments in her hand. Holding her breath, she brought them together.

There was a blinding flash of light as the two halves fused, and once again the Shikon No Tama was whole again, pulsating with an eerie pink light. "It's still not purified . . ." she whispered. She stared down at the jewel.

The jewel pulsed in her hand, and a voice in her head answered her unspoken question. 'The jewel can only be purified when it is bathed in the blood of an innocent, who sheds their blood freely to do so.' Kagome stared down at it in horror. 'It must be heart's blood child. Your life for the lives of so many others.'

'No . . . I finally have everything I've ever wanted . . . but . . . InuYasha will constantly be battling to protect it if I don't . . .' Shaking, she picked up one of her arrows. "I do this for you InuYasha. Be happy . . . with Kikyo."

Sango looked up in time to see Kagome slam an arrow into her heart, at the same time Naraku fell to the inu-youkai brothers. "Kagome!" she shouted, horrified.

Kagome pressed the sacred jewel to the wound as she pulled the arrow out, bathing it in her heart's blood. She was unaware of falling, till she found herself caught in InuYasha's arms.

"Kagome?" he whimpered, holding her close to his chest.

She stared up at his face, at the tears falling silently from his golden eyes, and smiled gently. Raising her hand, she cupped it to his cheek gently, running a thumb across his cheekbone in an absent caress.

"For you . . . my love. Be . . . happy . . . with Kikyo. It was . . . the only way . . . to purify the jewel. I . . . love . . . you . . . InuYasha." she whispered. Her body began to glow eerily, the light pulsing in time with the jewel and her slowing heartbeat. "The blood . . . of the innocent . . . shed freely . . . so that others may live without fear. This was . . . the way . . . it had to end." she breathed as the pulsing light slowed. Her body shattered into thousands of fragments of light that absorbed into the jewel, which settled into his outstretched hand.

"KAGOME!" the inu-hanyou howled, throwing his head back to scream in denial. "NO!"


InuYasha bolted upright on his branch, his face wet with tears, his heart pounding painfully as he relived again that moment 4 weeks ago. He buried his face in his hands and sobbed, his breath hitching painfully in his chest. "Kagome . . ." he whimpered, the pain in his heart almost more than he could bear. He'd already been through the well to break the news to her mother and family. He'd spent an hour holding her mother as she sobbed into his chest, trying to comfort the poor woman when his own heart had been breaking in his chest.

"Why?" he whispered brokenly. "Why did it have to end this way?" He fingered the jewel around his neck, wanting to throw it far away from him, but knowing that he couldn't waste Kagome's sacrifice like that.

Kikyo had tried to take him to hell with her. Instead, he'd killed her, releasing her spirit to it's rest in the proper way, unable to bear the sight of the former woman he had loved who bore the face of her reincarnation, who he had finally discovered he really did love.

Sesshoumaru and him were at last on speaking terms. They still didn't like each other, but they could tolerate each other's presence for short periods of time. Sess had been impressed with Kagome's sacrifice. That, combined with the effect the little girl Rin had on him had led him to realize humans weren't as useless as he'd felt they were.

In the end, though, InuYasha had been left with a gaping hole in his heart that no one knew how to fill. It had taken him so long to admit his feeling for the girl from the future, and just as he'd been ready to leave his past behind him, he'd lost her. Once again, all because of the Shikon No Tama. Sango and Miroku, and even little Shippo and Kirara, tried to help him, but he could not get over his grief at his loss. Finally, they left him to his own devices, watching as he spent days at the top of the Goshinboku tree, or kneeling beside the well that no longer allowed anyone to pass.

He stared down at the well now, wishing he could see her smiling face one last time as she climbed up from her time, toting that huge overstuffed backpack. "I miss you Kagome." he whispered, tears falling silently from his eyes. "I love you. I wish you would come back to me." He squeezed the jewel tightly in his hand, unaware of the light that had once again begun to pulse in it's heart with his words.


He placed the jewel reverently on it's stand in the shrine just as the sun disappeared below the horizon. He sighed, staring it at in hatred as his hair turned black as pitch and his demon blood ebbed with the new moon. The jewel had been the source of nearly every bad thing that had happened to him in his life. First it had taken Kikyo from him indirectly, and now Kagome was gone, sacrificing herself in a final act to purify the cursed jewel.

He turned his back on it, lost in his dark thoughts, and took up his position in front of the shrine, Tetsusiaga resting carefully across his knees. "Sess should be here soon to protect it for the night." he mumbled, staring up at the moonless sky. He'd been loathe to ask his brother to help him with anything, but with Miroku and Sango still healing from the battle with Naraku, there had been no other way. He'd been completely surprised when his brother had readily agreed, and even offered for the group to spend moonless nights in the Western Lands, at the castle of his father. When he'd asked, his brother had shrugged delicately and flipped his tail off his shoulder.

"The jewel is no use to me, or any demon, now that it's been purified, but that won't stop them from coming. Who am I to allow your mate's sacrifice to go to waste for such a trivial thing? She was a brave girl, for a human" At this, he had smiled down at Rin, who had been happily making a daisy chain to put on Kagome's grave. "Besides, Rin looked upon her as a sister."

InuYasha shrugged, rotating his shoulders to relieve the tension he could feel gathering there. Thinking of the past four weeks gave him a headache. So many things had happened that he had trouble keeping up with all the changes that had occurred..

"New Moon again, brother." Sesshoumaru stated as he appeared out of the shadows of the forest. "You really should just bring the jewel to the castle."

"This is where it belongs Sess. I can't remove it from here." Sesshoumaru shrugged delicately and took a seat near his brother. "Where is Rin?"

"Beating on Jaken, I believe, over with your companions." InuYasha grinned at the mention of the imp that always followed his brother around. That imp hadn't had a single day of peace since Sess had adopted the little human girl who'd saved him. Not that he didn't deserve whatever torment he got . . . InuYasha firmly believed that he was getting just what he had earned.

Sesshoumaru looked over at his currently human brother carefully, masking his concern behind his usual cold indifference. "You look like hell, InuYasha. You're still having nightmares, aren't you?" he asked simply, his voice emotionless.

InuYasha shrugged, but looked firmly at the ground as he felt tears well up in his eyes again. "She was my chosen mate, Sess . . . and I never got the chance to tell her. She died thinking I still loved Kikyo . . . cause I was too stubborn to see it myself." Sesshoumaru shrugged and laid a delicate hand on his brother's shoulder.

"Time will heal you, InuYasha. You cannot keep torturing yourself over the past." He stood, brushing his robes off and running a clawed hand through his long silver hair. "I'm going to walk for a bit. Sitting in one place too long . . . especially a human village . . . makes me irritable. I'll be back in a bit." InuYasha nodded, not looking up from the ground. He could still feel her lips under his, their first and only kiss happening while in the midst of battle . . . right before she had sacrificed herself. Even then, she had still thought he loved Kikyo, and had chosen the undead miko over her. He sighed, remembering her final words.

Engrossed in thought, he nearly missed the blinding flash of light that suddenly erupted behind him, from the shrine. He stood up and spun, shielding his eyes against the light to try to see into the shrine. He could barely distinguish a figure standing near the jewel's stand, cupping the jewel in it's glowing hands.

"Drop it!" he growled, advancing menacingly through the blinding light. The light slowly diminished, allowing him to see clearly. He dropped to his knees in shock at the sight before him.

"Kagome?" he breathed. The girl stood in traditional priestess robes of pure white, cupping the jewel in her hands. He watched as the jewel dissolved, turning into glistening powder that blew away on the gentle breeze. His heart squeezed painfully as she turned towards him, a gentle smile on her face.

"InuYasha . . ." she breathed, stepping towards him carefully, as if unsure of her footing.

"This is a dream . . . it must be . . . I've fallen asleep . . ." he mumbled, tears spilling unheeded from his violet eyes as he stared at the apparition before him. Sesshoumaru burst into the shrine behind him.

"What . . ." he started, stumbling to a halt as he beheld the sight before him.

The "apparition" squeaked at the sight of the Great Demon of the Western Lands, and started looking around for a bow, stopping when she noticed InuYasha wasn't moving. "InuYasha, your brother just walked into the shrine behind you, and you haven't budged an inch. What is going on?" She moved to kneel in front of him, keeping a wary eye on the full youkai near the door.

InuYasha stared at her in disbelief. "Is it . . . is it really you?" he asked softly. She reached out and cupped his face gently in her hands. He started at the contact of warm skin on his face, staring into her blue-grey eyes. "Kagome?"

"Yes, InuYasha . . . it's me," she whispered. "Midoriko heard your wish, and since the jewel was now completely purified, she granted it. I'm back . . . for good, if you'll have me." She found herself suddenly crushed against his chest in a rib cracking hug, his face buried in her hair as he sobbed. She wrapped her arms around him gently, running her hands soothingly over his ebony hair as he shook with the force of his emotions

He pulled away, and pressed his lips desperately to hers. " I love you, Kagome. I want you to be my mate. Forever." he whispered brokenly against her lips, hardly daring to believe she was in front of him, that he had a second chance. She smiled gently, kissing him back as she pressed herself into his hug.

"I love you InuYasha. I would gladly be your mate. Forever." Sesshoumaru cleared his throat behind them.

"That particular ceremony will bind the two of you together permanently . . . as in one will live as long as the other does. Are the both of you ready for that commitment?" He smiled slightly as his brother shot him a look. "I'll take that as a yes." He slowly turned and walked from the shrine, intent on retrieving Rin and letting his brothers companions know of the extraordinary events that had occurred.

Kagome continued to kneel in InuYasha's embrace, running her fingers through his hair. "I'm so sorry InuYasha. I thought that you had chosen Kikyo . . . I just wanted you to be happy."

"You baka. Kikyo is dead, and has been dead for over fifty years. I've always wanted you. I just felt an obligation to set her spirit to rest, and I've been afraid." Kagome sighed, pressing closer to him as he shuddered in the aftermath of his sobbing.

"We'll never be separated again, my hanyou. Never ever again." She kissed him gently, her touch as light as a butterflies wing, healing his soul.

"You're damn right we won't. I'm not letting you out of my sight, woman," he growled, his arms tightening around her slightly. She grinned suddenly, and looked into his violet eyes.


The End.

AN: So, what did you think? Good, bad, indifferent? Well, let me know. Review and tell me what you thought about it. Oh, and by the way, if you wanna issue a challenge to see what I can come up with, feel free. I'll answer you with whether I think I can do it, and then post it up here on FF.Net if you like : ) I'm always up for something different and new.