All Dressed Up by Aisuru aisuru_chan@yahoo.com

One Hour Challenge #147: One of your 'Couple' gets caught trying on the clothes of the other of the 'Couple'.

Kagome eyed the well wistfully. She would love nothing more than to jump through that mystical portal back to her time and enjoy a nice hot bath, curl up on her soft bed, and devour the latest manga her mother always bought for her, but she had made Inuyasha a promise, and she was determined to keep her word. After all, he hadn't made a fuss when she'd requested that they stop by Kaede's village in the Inuyasha Forest so she could visit her time; all he'd asked was that she wait until he could go with her. Ever since she'd been attacked by that disgusting slug youma the other day -- one of the grossest experiences of her life -- he had been very overprotective of her.

"Yeah, he probably just doesn't want to lose his shard detector," she muttered, flopping down on her back in the grass and turning her gaze from the well to watch the puffy clouds float by overhead. This time period may have deadly youkai, chauvinistic men, dangerous samurai, and a lack of indoor plumbing, but it also had fresh air and uninterrupted views if you were far enough from a village. She watched the clouds float by until they started to take on the orange and purple hues of sunset.

'What is taking him so long?' she wondered, and she left her backpack in the grass by the well to go off looking for the missing hanyou. She started walking in the direction she had seen him bound away, following the sporadic indentations in the grass -- where he landed between leaps -- to find the exact place that he had entered the forest that carried his name. She couldn't track by scent like Inuyasha, Kirara, or even Shippou, and she wasn't nearly as good at finding auras as Miroku, but Sango had taught her a few tricks during their travels. She looked for broken twigs, scattered green leaves on the forest floor, and the claw marks Inuyasha left on weight-supporting branches when he was being less than careful about making his location known.

Of course it was darker in the forest, and she had almost given up finding him when she heard a splash. She crept silently towards the sound, unsure if she would find a frog or a hungry youkai. Just beyond some bushes she found the large stream she and Sango sometimes used for bathing -- she hadn't realized it reached this close to the well, since they always took the path from the village. She peered through the twilight, and could make out something swimming in the water, something much larger than a frog, all white with a trailing tail of silver. No, wait, that wasn't a tail, it was hair! She was watching a naked Inuyasha!

Kagome covered her mouth with her hand to stifle the startled squeak that almost escaped her. She didn't even want to imagine what Inuyasha would say if he caught her watching him bathe, especially after all the sits she'd given him when she thought he was guilty of the same offense -- something he always denied. He would probably tell everybody that she was as perverted as Miroku! She turned to sneak away, only to find that it had grown much to dark for her to find her way back alone. She had no choice but to wait for him and hope she could bribe him into keeping this quiet.

She crept along the edge of the water, feeling her way with her feet and gripping trees for support, hoping to make her way to the path so she could pretend she had gone looking for him by more conventional means. He would probably yell at her for tromping through the woods at dusk, but maybe he wouldn't yell as much if he thought she had taken the path. Her foot hit something softer than the dirt and leaves, and she almost called out for Inuyasha as her imagination ran wild with the possibilities of the identity of what she had stumbled across. She nudged the soft something with her foot again, wanting to be sure it wasn't something alive, but it didn't seem to be moving. Swallowing hard, she leaned down to find out what it was she had found. Her hand touched fur, and she leapt back in alarm.

A few yards away, Inuyasha emerged from the water, all white and glistening, and Kagome held her breath, worried he had heard her. He was facing the other direction, though, shaking the water out of his ears and sneezing out some water that had gotten in his nose. 'Oh, I'm so stupid!' Kagome thought, standing as still as she could. 'I didn't even remember that he could have smelled I was here.' Apparently he didn't, though, because he simply flattened his ears against his head and dived back into the water again, giving Kagome a flash of pale, muscular buttocks that made her face flame red.

Feeling a little braver, since she had evaded notice by the great Inuyasha, she reached out for the furry thing again. Whatever it was, it didn't seem to have any bones, or flesh. She felt around some more and her fingers uncovered a piece of white clothe. She stifled a laugh. 'Well, Inuyasha, I guess I've found your clothes! I'd forgotten that your fire-rat hakama and haori were made of fur.'

Knowing that at least Inuyasha couldn't leave without her if she had his clothes, and thinking this might be good blackmail material to keep her potential for hentai tendencies a secret, she scooped up the arm-load of material. 'I'm holding something that would be in a museum if it were in my time,' she realized, 'either that or a scientific laboratory where people in white coats and safety goggles would try to figure out just what indestructible material made up the red garments. I really should be taking more advantage of this incredible opportunity I have, being in the past like this.'

She draped the kimono and fire-rat haori over a low-hanging tree branch beside her. She wondered how many fire-rats had died to make the hakama, with all of its folds and flowing yards of fabric, and she wondered how large the pant-legs would flare out at his feet if he didn't tie them tight to his ankle. This, too, she draped over the tree-branch. This left only one more garment, a long strip of white fabric. She looked at it curiously for a while, thinking that she'd never seen Inuyasha in something like this before. She shrugged and hung it on the tree as well.

By the time her face had cooled to a normal temperature, she was bored. Inuyasha was still bathing, or swimming, or whatever it was he was doing -- she cut off that train of thought very quickly -- and he showed no signs of emerging to take her home. Maybe he'd forgotten all about her.

She glanced back at the tree-branch holding his clothes. The white material was bright in the light of the moon, and the fire-rat fur seemed as dark as shadows. She remembered when Inuyasha had put the fire-rat haori on her shoulders when they fought the hair-comb demon, and how heavy the fabric had been, and how warm. There was a little chill to the air, so she slipped the haori off the tree-branch. It was a bit itchy on her bare arms -- she wasn't wearing her long-sleeved school uniform blouse this time -- so she took it off again and donned his white kimono first. She had to push the sleeves up to free her hands enough to tie the ties securing it in place. This was much softer, as Inuyasha wore it directly against his skin. It even smelled a bit like him, something wild and masculine.

Next she added the fire-rat haori, and she was surrounded not just by his scent but by the warmth and weight of his garments. This was much better, much warmer, although she was sure she must look ridiculous, her small frame engulfed as it was, but her bare legs were a little chilly in her shorts, so she reached for the hakama. She had put on something similar when Kaede gave her the miko outfit that Inuyasha refused to let her wear, but the miko costume's pants had not had such long legs, and her hands hadn't been covered in such long sleeves at the time, but she managed to struggle into them and tie the intricate ties. She looked down at herself -- she was warm, but she wasn't going to be doing any running in this outfit. She allowed herself a giggle before she grabbed the last piece of cloth, the long white strip, and fashioned it into a goofy hat, just for fun.

(End 1 hour)

Inuyasha emerged from his underwater swim, popping out of the water with a large splash directly in front of Kagome. His tranquil mood was immediately shattered when he saw Kagome sitting on the bank, dressed in every last scrap of his clothes. First came surprise, since she had actually managed to sneak up on him, a rare occurrence for any creature. Embarrassment immediately followed, and he ducked back into the water until it reached his chin, his hair floating out behind him. Righteous indignation started to make an appearance, but it was actually snuffed out by amusement at how adorable Kagome looked in his too-long sleeves and pant- legs, like a pup putting on the garbs of its parents. There was a little twinge of desire and more than a little twinge of pleasure that she would now be covered in his scent. He thought about how much that would annoy Shippou, and he had to scowl to hide the emerging smile.

"Hey, Kagome, what do you think you're doing, watching me bathe like that!" is what he finally said.

Kagome glared at him. "I wasn't watching you bathe," she insisted. "You made me promise not to go home without you, and I've been waiting for hours!"

"Like you don't spend any time bathing," he grumbled. "And what's with putting on my clothes like that. They don't even fit you."

"It got cold," Kagome defended herself.

"Well, how the hell do you think I feel?" he asked her.

Kagome actually smiled, not one of those motherly smiles she gave Shippou or the friendly smiles she gave Sango. This was more of a manipulative smile, like the kind she got before she sat him. "Don't say it!" he warned. "I'll drown!"

Kagome rolled her eyes. "I'm not going to say 'it'," she said. "I just figure that if you want your clothes bad enough, you'll be willing to let me stay home for a whole week."

"What?" Inuyasha shouted. "You said you were only going to go home for one day to pick up a-sai-n-me-n-tsu from su-ku-lu!"

"Yeah," she admitted with a smile, "but I've got more bargaining power now. And," she added, "I don't want you telling anyone that I was watching you bathe."

"So you were watching me bathe!" Inuyasha accused, actually blushing a bit.

"I so was not!" Kagome screeched, then, in a more normal voice, said, "I just don't want you making everyone think that I did."

"Because you probably did," Inuyasha grumbled.

"You wish," she countered.

Inuyasha flattened his ears to his skull and ducked under the water again, since his hair had floated about his shoulders in an annoying tangle. He took the moments underwater to think this out. 'There is no way I'm going to lose Kagome's company -- I mean, my shard detector -- for a whole week, but I'm also not going to go back to the village naked,' he thought. He popped back up, smoothing his hair back with his hands, and stood until the water reached his hips, figuring Kagome's weak human eyes couldn't see in the dark. She squealed anyway, covering her eyes with hands buried in his kimono and haori sleeves. "Inuyasha!" she complained.

"I'll tell you what," he said, crossing his arms across his very bare, very muscular chest, "You hand me my loin cloth and we can discuss your 'bargaining power'."

Kagome blushed, lowering her hands to look at his face. "Um, Inuyasha, sorry to tell you this, but I didn't see a... loin cloth... among your clothes. I don't see very well in the dark, and I only found these because I almost tripped over them."

Inuyasha smiled at her, his normal, smirking, predatory grin, and he pointed to her head. She reached up, touching the long strip of white cloth that she had fashioned into a hat. She blushed furiously, pulled it of her head, and threw it at him. He had to lean towards her to catch it, but catch it he did. She was still watching him with mortified eyes, so he smirked at her again. "You wanna watch?" he taunted. She spun around as fast as she could in the lengthy pant-legs.

Inuyasha stepped fully out of the water, shook himself off like a dog -- Kagome cringed as her hair was splashed but did not turn around -- and wrapped the cloth around his waist and unmentionables with practiced ease. Appropriately covered, he leapt for Kagome, knocking her to the ground and twisting so that he took the full force of the fall. She squeaked in surprise, and he rolled them so she was trapped underneath him. "Now," he said with a smirk, "Let's discuss this 'bargaining power' you have."

(End 30 minutes)

Kagome could only look up at the hanyou that had her pinned to the ground -- the almost naked, very bare-chested hanyou, whose amber eyes glowed at her in the darkness and whose hair was dripping water on her. She opened and closed her mouth a few times, but no sound came out. Finally she managed to sputter, "You cheated."

"Kagome," Inuyasha scolded, "You're not really in the... position... to complain about cheating." Inuyasha closed his eyes and leaned forward, burying his nose in her neckline and taking in their combined scents.

Kagome gulped and pushed at him with her hands, but she couldn't budge him an inch. "What are you doing?" she asked.

"Just making sure you didn't get your stench all over my clothes," he growled rudely. He scowled to get the ridiculous happy-puppy expression off his face before lifting his face from her throat. "You're not leaving for a whole week," he announced, pushing her arms to the ground beside them and resting his arms over them so she wouldn't decide to pull on his hair or something.

"Okay," she sighed, "just a school week. Five-and-a-half days."

Inuyasha shook his head, his wet hair smacking against her flushed cheeks. "Nope. You're not leaving at all."

"What?" Kagome squealed, and Inuyasha flattened his ears against his head and was very glad he'd thought to pin down her arms. "Inuyasha, you promised!"

"Hey, you're the one that wanted to change the rules and talk about 'bargaining power,'" he said. "Now hold still," he cautioned. "I don't want to nick you with my claws."

At his warning she froze in place, but all he did was reposition himself so he was straddling her waist and reach down for the ties of the haori. "Hey! You can't undress me!" she complained, although she held very still as he worked at the knots and kept her eyes fixed on the stars above, unwilling to risk a glance at his loincloth.

Inuyasha paused for only a moment, but kept his hands on the jacket. "You are wearing your clothes underneath, right?" he asked. At her nod, he continued to work at the knots. "Then there's no problem."

"Get off me and I'll take them off myself."

Inuyasha shook his head. "Nope. Don't want to risk you running off with my clothes," he said, although they both knew that if she decided to run he could catch her before she chose a direction to start in. The knot of the haori came undone, and when he pulled the fabric open and up and reached between them for the strings of the hakama, Kagome ignored his caution about claws and grabbed onto his wrists.

"Come on, Inuyasha, I can take off your clothes by myself," she whined, still avoiding his face and knowing she could no more move his wrists then she could push him off of her.

"Maybe some other time," he offered, grabbing her hands and pinning them under his knees to prevent any further interruptions. She blinked up at him stupidly, hoping he hadn't just said what she thought he'd said, but the tint of red on his face, barely visible in the light of the moon, and the fact that he was avoiding looking at her eyes was an indication that he had. She followed his gaze to his hands, got a glimpse of his undergarment, which was wrapped much like a sumo-wrestler's garb, and looked up at the stars again, her face afire.

She decided a change in topic was necessary. "You have to let me go home tonight," she demanded.

His hands paused in their work, resting on her torso. "I have to, Kagome?" he asked, looking at her eyes until she was forced to return his gaze.

"Well, I guess you don't *have* to, but I really need to go home!" she amended.

"You'll come back in the morning," he stated, his hands fingering the knots again although his eyes stayed on hers.

"That won't work," she said. "I need to go to school to get the assignments. I can come home in the evening."

"At midday," he bargained, dropping the untied strings.

Kagome shook her head. "Three hours after noon?" she offered.

"I'm going with you," he reminded her.

"Not to school!" she countered. "You can stay at my house, or come back here, but you can't follow me to school."

"I've gone to your school before," he said, "when you forgot your lunch. And I've taken you to school before when you were running late."

"If my friends see you, they'll ask questions," she muttered, dropping her eyes.

(End 30 minutes)

Inuyasha separated the sides of the haori to expose the top-half of the kimono she wore below it and reached for the last set of knots. "If your friends see me they'll ask questions?" he asked, bringing his eyes back up to hers. "What sort of questions?"

"They'll ask 'What the hell are you guys doing?'" Miroku's voice called from the edge of the villager's path. He then let out a grunt of pain as Sango punched him in the arm.

The effect was immediate. Inuyasha leapt off of Kagome. Kagome crawled backwards several feet, tried to leap to her feet, and tripped over the hakama as it slid down her hips. Inuyasha rushed towards her, catching her about the hips before she hit the ground. By the time Kagome had steadied herself on her feet, the hakama were pooled about her ankles, Inuyasha was kneeling on the ground before her, in only his loin cloth, with his arms around her hips, and the kimono covering her shorts and much of Inuyasha's face, which had ended up beneath the kimono in his dive towards her. The haori and kimono hung opened in the front, revealing the front of her peach t-shirt, which looked like bare skin in the dim light.

Miroku let out a shout of laughter. "Now that's what I call getting caught with your pants down!" he exclaimed. Sango would have hit him if she hadn't been laughing so hard herself.

(End 10 minutes)