The forest has always called to Kagome, despite the warnings of her fellow villagers. When she finally gets the chance to explore its hidden depths, she may not like what she finds.

In the Forest of Fate

It had been nearly fifty years since anyone from the village had entered the forest after dark.

The legend went thusly: A monster born from the union of hell and earth dwelled there, slumbering and gathering power during the day, while at night stalking the woods and tearing apart anything that came in its path, be it nature, beast, or man. Its reign began in an age before the oldest among them could remember and continued uninterrupted despite powerful attempts by armies and kings and priests.

Old Kaede's sister, the revered priestess Kikyo, had been the last to venture in. The village had been missing livestock, more and more sheep and cows wandering every day. Some said the monster called to them from the forest, beckoned them with his evil powers, and one day he would draw in a human. Priestess Kikyo, after delivering a speech that restored courage to the hearts of the people, set forth unaccompanied in the forest at twilight, promising to rid them of the monster. She was never seen again. Her sister Kaede, then ten years old, was left to fend for herself, living off scraps from the tables of the kind-hearted. It wasn't long before her mind began to wander.

Kagome had been raised to fear the forest. Despite that terror ingrained in her heart since before she could speak, she frequently found herself studying the tall, ancient trees, walking along the outside. It was densely wooded so she couldn't see much, but she longed to take a walk and see the inside just for a minute. Every time she tried to pass the outermost tree, something chilled her to the bone and she stopped, running back to the safety of her family's hut. There was something about the dead silence of the forest that rang in her ears, forcing her to seek out warmth and comfort.

For twenty years she flirted with the idea of entering the forest. None of her suitors (and she had several) interested her half as much as the forbidden wood. The temptation became so bad that she began to even dream about it, waking up disoriented, swearing she had just been laying on a bed of moss and breathing the damp, dark air. The place between her thighs ached after every one of those dreams.

Kagome's opportunity came so suddenly she wasn't even able to think about it.

It had been a harvest celebration. The crops were whole and abundant, more than they'd need. Couples flirted and children chased each other. It lasted long into the night. The villagers strung together paper lanterns and hung them from their homes, lighting up the moonless night. One of the village men who had been drinking heavily attempted to hit another man in the face with a bottle of wine. He missed by a good few inches and the bottle went flying in an arc, soaring through the sky until it hit one of the huts, tangling with a lantern before breaking. As every single hut in the village was constructed of wood and dried grass, it wasn't long until the entire village was in flames. But to Kagome the fire seemed to catch unusually fast, as though their homes had all been drenched in wine.

People were screaming, pushing, stampeding. In all the chaos, Kagome didn't have time to find her family, didn't even have time to think. Her feet took her to the forest, the cool darkness, and she ran aimlessly, barely retaining the presence of mind not to run in to any trees. Tears streamed down her face and blurred her vision and she looked up to the sky, hoping to see stars to light her way, at least. Nothing. It seemed as if the forest sucked all the light away. Not even the flames of the destroyed village were visible, and she couldn't hear anything but her own panting breaths. Where was she? How far had she come?

Slowing down, she took a look around her. Though it was dark, it was not pitch black. Somehow, she could make out vague forms of trees and rocks. The rocks were oddly-shaped and a dull white. Kagome had never seen anything like them before. A familiar curiosity itched inside her. Leaning down, she picked one up. Part of it was stuck in the ground so she tugged hard. When it was almost loose, her eyes adjusted even more and she made out what she could not before: it was a bone. It seemed to hum in her hand, and she felt that old feeling from her dreams, that feeling of being watched, of being called. Dropping it with a shriek, she began to run again, further from or closer to the village, she did not know.

Just as she was beginning to tire, something yanked back on her arm and she went flying backwards a short distance, landing against something hard. She went rigid with fright before realizing she could see clearly now, a warm glow illuminating a circle around her.

"Are you lost?"

The voice was kind and gentle and she turned to face it, relief nearly making her drop to her knees. A young man, handsome and bearing a sympathetic expression, held a torch. Black hair, violet eyes, golden skin. His clothes were old-fashioned and red but looked brand new.

Kagome nodded, a blush coming to her cheeks. She must have seemed like a complete lunatic. "My village… I-it's burning and I came here, but now I'm lost."

He nodded thoughtfully. "I thought I heard some disturbance along the southern border."

"You're not from the village?" It was a stupid question since she didn't recognize him, but the only other villages near theirs were in the mountains at the other end of the forest or across the river that was too treacherous and unpredictable to bridge.

He shook his head. "It's too dark to see by. If you'd like, you can stay in my home tonight and we can return to your village in the morning."

"Where do you live?"

"Not far from here."

"In the forest?"

He nodded.

"Wow," she breathed, following him once he started walking. "I didn't think anyone actually lived here. Everyone said the forest was filled with man-eating monsters. They'll never believe me when I tell them."

The man smirked. "I haven't met a single monster yet."

"What's your name?" she asked shyly. He looked and conducted himself like a prince and never did she feel more a simple village girl.

"Inuyasha," he said after a short pause.

The name reverberated in her ears and resonated in her heart. "Inuyasha," she repeated, following it up with a giggle. "What a strange name. I'm Kagome."

So concentrated was she on their brief conversation that she almost missed the giant structure that blended in with the trees. A large, dark building that was grander than anything she'd ever seen. As they got closer, however, she realized it was crumbling at the edges, completely collapsed in some places, and covered in ivy. A dark aura seemed to hang about the place and she shivered. Was this what gave the forest its foreboding feeling, or had the forest infected it?

His warm, large hand encircled her wrist and he led her through the dark entryway, lighting ensconced torches on the walls as he went. There were fine tapestries and hangings on the walls, some of them touched with mildew, others intact. Silks were draped everywhere. The furnishings were upholstered in velvet. There were signs of deterioration all around the place, but the mere fact that she was there and with such a beautiful man blinded her to that. The palace that once was appeared eternal to her eyes and she soaked it all up, feeling like she might faint.

"This was my mother's birthplace," he murmured, leading her into the kitchen. "We came to live here after my father died."

"I'm sorry," she whispered. Something about the place made her keep quiet, afraid to disturb the silence.

"It was a long time ago." Inuyasha put a kettle on the wood-burning stove, sprinkling some sweet-smelling herbs inside before closing the lid.

"Do you not have servants, my lord?" she asked tentatively.

"It's only me here. Me and you, now."

As much as she was attracted to him, Kagome's upbringing nagged at her. An unmarried woman should not be alone with a man who was not of her family, not even if they were promised to each other. Her cheeks flushed at what her fellow villagers would say.

"I must get back to the village. Maybe the fire has been put out already. My family will be worried."

"You'll stay the night here," he said simply, pouring her a cup of tea from the whistling pot.

Gratefully, she accepted the drink. It had been cold in the forest, something which she was just now realizing since the adrenaline had evaporated. The little cup was chipped but was still the most expensive thing she had ever touched. Sipping from it, she sighed at thoughts of what she could never have.

"You are so generous, but I really do have to leave. My mother is probably frantic by now, and I'm afraid for my little brother. He was sleeping when it happened. What if he didn't make it out of the hut in time?" The more she thought about it, the more she began to panic.

Inuyasha laughed and slammed the pot down on the stove with a loud crash. "There's no way you're ever making it back to the village. Your place is here now."

Kagome's head swirled in shock. She opened her mouth to ask what he meant, but no words came out. She could not speak. The realization made her stumble to her feet only to have her entire body grow numb. The cup dropped from her grasp and the last thing she felt was the fuzzy sensation of Inuyasha's arms around her, lifting her up and taking her somewhere further into the house, into the heart of the forest.

O\o/O

The foreign softness surrounding her woke her from slumber. Kagome's head ached from the inside out and she opened her eyes, blinking rapidly to try and make sense of the blurriness. The first thing she realized was that her dress and undergarments were gone. She had never been naked anywhere but in the bath, and a sense of deep shame stabbed her.

"The sun is rising," a voice said to her right.

She turned her head so quickly it hurt and nausea made the world swirl. Inuyasha was next to her, eyes intense as he examined her body. His clothes were nowhere to be seen and she began to cry. Her mother had told her stories of rich men and naïve girls, how they would carelessly take everything from a woman and then discard her like nothing.

"Please don't," she begged, whimpering. "I-I want to get married someday. I don't want—"

Silencing her with a kiss, Inuyasha held down her wrists and stopped her pathetic struggles. It was not the first time a man had kissed her, but it was certainly the first time she'd ever been kissed quite like that. Briefly surrendering, she closed her eyes and opened her mouth as he seemed to be encouraging her to do and was not disappointed when he began to caress her tongue with his, liquid heat pooling in her body. A rush of energy filled the room and she felt goosebumps pop up on her arms and legs and breasts. He stopped kissing her but she could still feel his breath on her lips. Opening her eyes, she saw not Inuyasha above her, but someone different. Silver hair, yellow eyes with slit pupils, wicked fangs that glinted and threatened.

The monster.

Kagome was too frightened to run. Too frightened to close her eyes and wish it away. Too frightened to speak.

A growl in his chest, Inuyasha, the monster, dipped his head down again and began to lick her neck, sucking the skin and laying small kisses here and there, fangs pricking her. Against her will, her body responded to his actions and she felt disgusted with herself.

"Was it you?" she whispered before she could think about it. "Was it you who scattered the bones? Did you kill the priestess Kikyo? Did…did you set the village on fire?"

He bit her neck, fangs digging into her skin, cutting and violating her. "Think before you speak and maybe then you won't waste words."

In tears once again, Kagome opened her mouth to apologize, but he shushed her before she could do even that. Holding her down by the throat with one clawed hand, he began to sinfully lick her erect nipple. His light moan on her breast had her answering him in kind and without her realizing it she began to cradle the back of his head to her breast, caressing his animal ears, arching into his hot mouth filled with jagged dangers. The heated press of his body against hers had everything out of her mind, and she remembered her dreams of the forest, abandoning herself to the beautiful agony she'd previously only felt while sleeping.

His tongue snaked its way down her body, burning a trail to her most secret place. Kagome fleetingly thought that this was wrong, that only her husband should see and touch her there, but then he began to lick her down below and she ceased to think at all, hands going to her breasts, tweaking and pinching the nipples she'd never before dared to touch. Vulgar wet noises filled the room and she wiggled her hips, moving against Inuyasha's face. The parts he was touching made something inside her tighten and she felt it wind in on itself over and over until she was sure it would break.

And then he stopped.

"What fate is worse, death or being my wife?"

Tears leaked from her eyes in protest. "W-what?"

Inuyasha grinned, the juices she'd released glistening on his face. Deftly, he stuck a single finger inside her, making her gasp.

"Death or marrying me?"

"I don't know what you're talking about," she gasped, writhing on the bed. "P-please do what you were doing before, my lord, I beg you!" This sin of the flesh had corrupted her, just as her mother said it would, but if she was already corrupted then she wanted the full experience.

A second finger wormed its way inside her tight sheath. Kagome heard him give a low whistle and then he chuckled.

"Come on, Kagome," he said huskily, crooking his fingers inside her and making her wail. "Death or becoming my bride?"

Something told her this was a very important question. If she could only think, she'd be able to arrive at the correct answer. But the only thinking she could do was figuring out which answer would give her more pleasure.

"I'll marry you," she moaned, snapping her hips and fucking herself on his hand.

"Say you're my wife," he demanded, a third finger entering her, stretching her.

"I'm your wife!" she shouted, sweat dripping from every pore, everything in her straining towards the relief she could sense was just out of reach.

Grunting in satisfaction, he returned his mouth to her dripping core, giving her clit one long lick. That was all it took and Kagome was grabbing at the satin sheets, screaming his name until her voice was hoarse, bucking up against his face. Inuyasha continued to lick her throughout the experience, prolonging it. When it was over her entire body was trembling, limbs twitching every now and then. Face dripping with her orgasm, he kissed her lips, and this time her tongue ventured into his mouth, unsure if she was doing it right.

"You're weak," he breathed against her lips.

Tears pricked at her eyes. This was not how she pictured her wedding night. Aligning himself with her entrance, Inuyasha dove into her, pushing forward even when she hit his shoulders and told him he would not fit. It took several tries, but then all of him was firmly clenched inside her. It was a strange feeling to have him pulsing inside her, completing her in ways she'd never dreamed of.

"In my five-hundred years of imprisonment in this forest," he said as he thrust inside her, rubbing her clit with his thumb, "you're the first to have such little pride."

"I don't care," Kagome groaned, arching her back again, cupping her breasts and offering him her nipples. He accepted and she cried out with pleasure, urging him to suck harder, to bite her. Not all of her knew what was happening, but she knew she enjoyed it and never wanted it to end.

"Slut," he growled against her breast, repeating the word over and over, eat time making her hotter until she came again, soaking him in her cum.

Hours later, they lay together, limbs entwined. For the first time in her life, Kagome felt completely at peace, and she nuzzled into his chest.

"You're going to give me an army of children," Inuyasha announced.

"Yes," she agreed dreamily. He was her husband, her lord, she'd do as he said.

"I will take back the world that was stolen from me and you will remain at my side. Together, we will make every single human pay for denying me my birthright, for trying to stamp me out of existence."

"My lord," she whispered adoringly, scattering kisses on his chest muscles, the innocence behind them quickly morphing into something darker, something promising.

"You will birth the destruction of your race," he said tenderly, stroking her hair. "By agreeing to marry me, the curse Midoriko placed on me all those many years ago has been broken. Now I can leave the forest on nights other where there is no light in heaven."

"Will we visit the village, Inuyasha?"

He grinned, fangs glinting murderously. "That will be our first stop, Kagome."