Sango walked along the foggy night around the tree that she slept on one afternoon... "Ahhh... I remember this tree..Good Times...", she said. She sighed, "Miroku....Where are you?.. If I could only tell you how I feel Miroku made his way through the thick fog, squinting his eyes in the darkness, trying to see something , or rather, someone. He knew Sango was here somewhere; he'd been following her when she left the group and thought it an opportune moment to have some time alone with the taijiya. But, unfortunately, he'd lost her in the fog, and now groped around trying to find his way. "Sango?" he called through the fog, hoping she was nearby and could hear him. Sango heard Miroku and gasped, "Hello?.. Miroku... I'm lost.. I can't see!" "Sango?" the houshi perked up as her voice came to him through the fog and carefully made his way in the direction he thought her voice came from. "Sango, I'm here, it's ok, just stay where you are and keep talking, I'll come to you." Sango kept talking, "I'm crying now... I'm scared.." Tears came to her eyes.... Damnit.' Miroku thought. This wasn't how he had pictured their encounter; this fog was proving more of a pain than he'd expected. But he soon saw a small figure sillhouetted not too far in front of him. As Sango's figure came into full view, Miroku saw her shaking with tears dripping down her cheeks, and, his heart faltering for a moment, Miroku slid his arm over her shoulders and pulled her into a light one-armed hug. "It's alright, Sango, I'm here." he said softly, and gently rubbing her arm comfortingly. Sango felt his and and grabbed it...She turned around and now face to face... She hugged him, "I was so scared, Miroku, and now that we found each other.. I need to talk to you about something." "Ah, yes...we do.." Miroku said, his eyes both brightening and darkening with the knowledge of what he came to tell Sango. "But please, you go first." He smiled slightly, hoping to put off what he came for if only for a few more moments. Sango stopped, "NO... Go first ... I insist.".. Sango's heart sank when she noticed something on

Miroku's face. The houshi sighed audibly at Sango's insistance and, resignedly, began the speech he'd gone over so many times in his head for the past few days. "Sango, I have known for...quite some time, that...that you were something extraordinary. Since the moment you first entered my...our lives, I've known that." He paused, looking at her face for some time of reaction. Sango was flattered of what he said about the extraordinary part... She had a small smile... "Miroku... What are you trying to say??", she asked.. "I..what I'm trying trying to say is...that....that I..." Miroku breathed another sigh. 'Damnit, why is this so hard?' It had been much easier to say in his head. Miroku pulled slightly away from the girl and turned his gaze to the ground between them; it would be much easier to say if he didn't have to see her eyes, if he didn't have to see whatever feelings might show in those beautiful bright chestnut eyes of hers. "Sango...I..I love you." The slightest hint of pink crept to his nose as he waited once again for the girl's reaction. Sango was shocked and didn't say anything.. She was motionless... Miroku took her silence as a cue to continue, not sure whether the shocked look in her eyes was good or bad. "Sango, I love you," he said again, as if to reinforce the idea, and took one of her hands in both of his. "You are the most beautiful, engaging, fiery, and entrancing woman I have ever met, but..." The time had finally come. "But you are also something I know I could never hope to have." Sango smiled, "...I understand..." was all she simply said... Miroku blinked, "Y-you do?" Sango said, "Yes I do...It'll be painful though.." More tears start to bunch up in Sango's eyes.. "Sango..." the houshi said softly as he saw Sango's eyes sparkle with tears, "I'm sorry, but there's nothing I can do." Sango's river of tears sparkled... Then she threw herself to the floor and started to cry.. 'Please don't do this, Sango, this is hard enough as it is.' Miroku thought as he knelt beside the crying girl and, setting aside his staff, gently wrapped his arms around her shoulders. "Please Sango, don't cry over someone like me, I'm not worth it." Sango still cried and screamed, "Don't you DARE TOUCH ME!!!...." With anger in her Voice The houshi jumped back slightly, his hands on the ground behind him to keep his balance, his eyes wide with shock. "S-Sango...I.." Sango got up... Her eyes were empty and dead from life.. That look in Sango's eyes all but tore Miroku's heart from his chest. He'd only seen that look three times before -- each time after an encounter with Kohaku -- and it killed him that he now had caused such pain to drain her deep eyes of all their life and brilliance. Miroku too rose to his feet, hesitantly reaching out a hand to her shoulder. "Sango, please, allow me to explain myself atleast..." Sango did not listen because she had a spider on her neck.. being possessed by Naraku...Sango fought off his hand Miroku hadn't seen the spider, being too preoccupied with the look in her eyes, and continued to try and talk some sense into the taijiya. "Sango, you're being irrational, please..." The spider was covered by the weapon on her back...She didn't listen...When she got her weapon off.. The spider was revealed.... She was going to kill him.. And Emptily she said, "I will Kill you, Miroku.." The quick vision of the spider was all Miroku needed to realize this wasn't Sango he was now speaking to. His face hardened as she fell into an attack stance, and coldly told him she would kill him. The houshi quickly reached down and grabbed his staff, preparing to fend off the possessed taijiya's attack, and ready to go after the spider once an opening presented itself. Sango saw him get his staff but she threw her weapon and Miroku dropped his staff.. She quickly ran with her sword..and put it against his neck, "Better not move, Miroku..." "Or what? You'll slit my throat?" Miroku asked the spider demon coolly. "If you're going to kill me, you may as well do it. I am most likely going to die soon anyway, you may as well save me the uncertainty of waiting for my kazaana to do it." The houshi now spoke to Sango, trying to reach her, force her to push herself back in control of her mind. "I have nothing to live for now I cannot be with the woman I love, the woman you have taken control over, and I doubt the others would mourn my death for long. So go ahead..." He glared darkly into Sango's eyes, but behind the bluff was a fear only Sango would be able to see, and he hoped she would see, for despite his big talk, Miroku was scared beyond imagination of dying. Sango loosen the sword.. "I-I-I can't... I see pure darkness.. I can't control over...", she replied... Then for a minute life came back to her..She blinked and knelt on her knees grabbing her head.. trying to fight fr her mind

Miroku gave a mental sigh of relieve as the sword was moved from his throat and he attempted to bat away the spider demon that still clung to her neck but his hand was pushed away by a clawed leg that shot a bolt of pain through his hand as it made contact. Realizing he couldn't physically remove the demon, the houshi knelt in front of Sango, hoping she might be able to fight it off mentally. He lifted her face even with his own, held her hands between them, and, keeping Sango's gaze with his own full of love and comfort, spoke soothingly to the girl, "Sango, you can fight it, the demon is an intruder in your mind and you can take it back, just listen to my voice and come out of the darkness..." Sango twitched and fought of Miroku violently, "Let me go! It's useless!" She was trying to fight it off but she couldn't find the light "It's not useless." 'It can't be useless.' Miroku held firmly to Sango's hands, not letting go no matter how hard she thrashed. "Listen to my voice, Sango, listen to my voice and follow it out of the darkness, you can do it, I know you can..." Sango stopped and now with her blank eyes she fell down to the grass...She was was breathing faintly... A slight fear gripped Miroku as Sango fell limp and heard her shallow breath. He leaned down and gently rolled her on her back, brushing aside a few stray strands of dark hair that covered her face. He gently stroked her cheek and softly called her name. Sango still had her eyes wide open she faintly said, "I can't find you....Where are you Miroku??? I love you!!... I can't see you.." "I'm right here." Miroku said quietly and leaned down to kiss her. The kiss was meaningless because Sango didn't react to it...Still with her eyes with no life.. Sango's mind was now what she saw....She was surrounded by pure darkness... She was there sitting.. Hugging her knees,"I can't find anything..." Miroku's mind reeled, he had not idea how to help the lost Sango, how to help her find her way out of the darkness. He was quickly running out of ideas, all he could do was talk to her, let her follow his voice through the fog encompassing her mind. "Sango, you can do it, just follow my voice through the darkness..." Sango got up and looked around then out of nowhere she saw something she ran to it and saw Miroku surrounded by light.. He was holding out his hand...She took it..Then the REAL Sango reached out her hand....Hoping Miroku would take it.. He did take it and, holding it firmly to let her know he was there, continued to speak to her soothingly, encouragingly. "Come out of the darkness, Sango, come back to me..." As he spoke, he was slowly rising to his feet, lifting the girl with him. Sango...then felt his hand... then sending him a message to his mind...Miroku...found himself in darkness too...she heard his voice, "Miroku.. You're in my mind....Where are you???" Miroku fell to his knees, his violet eyes glazing over drained of life, as the darkness encompassed his mind. He unconsciously dropped Sango's hand as he tried to fight the darkness that clouded him. "Sango?" he called as her voice came to him as if from far away. "Sango, I'm here. I...I can't see anything...What's going on?" Sango explained, "You're in my mind..well your mind is in my mind...and you're the only light that I have in my mind... but now.. it's dark...I can't get out...I can't find the light....You understand, Mirou?" He was in her mind? This darkness...it was in her mind? But the darkness wasn't all that was there, there was also a sense of lonliness, of fear, of doubt and no matter how he tried, Miroku couldn't force these feelings away. All of them infiltrated his mind, blackening his senses, weighing down his soul and heart, trying to make him believe he'd never get out. The houshi clutched his chest as if a great pain swelled inside him. "Sango...I'm sorry...I couldn't save you....and now.." The figure in Sango's mind dropped to his knees, his teeth clenching, "I don't think....I don't think I can help us..." Sango heard the voice close....She ran.. and ran... "Miroku.... Please keep talking..." She ran until a firgure came to her sight... The a great darkness spot covered her from the sight.. She held out her hand.. hoping Miroku can see it, "Miroku!..Help me...Something is swallowing me up... Darkness is!" Miroku opened an eye as he heard Sango cry out his name. He saw her figure for only a moment before it was swallowed by the darkness, her hand reaching out. The houshi fought against his mind, against the feelings that clenched around his heart, reached out his hand to take her's. They brushed fingertips as Sango was pulled further and further into the darkness; but Miroku rose to his feet once again and, reaching out, enclosed his hand around Sango's, and with one final pull, freed her from the dark orb. Sango was pulled but she was weak... the darkness was the fear and lonliness that was draining her life... They were still in darkness... When she was pulled out ... She fell into his arms and said, "Thank you...My love.. and fainted for 5 minutes to re-gain her power... Miroku breathed as he felt the weight lift from his heart and the darkness leave his mind. They were out, it was over. He held Sango in his arms, waiting patiently for her to regain consciousness, and saw the spider demon leap back as if injured and scamper into the grass. The houshi watched the demon for a moment, then, lifting his staff, sent it flying and impaled the spider demon. The fog had lifted some while they had been trapped in Sango's mind and he could now see the sky blush as the sun began its decent. "Sango," he said quietly, brushing her hair behind her ears, "Sango wake up, it's over, it's alright...you're with me now." Sango woke up without a smile....She looked around.... Then suddenly out of nowhere... She hugged and Kissed Miroku at the same time.. and didn't let go.. She knew Miroku would try to stop her But she wouldn't let him go... And Miroku indeed did try to stop her. He still stood by what he'd said before, he knew they couldn't be together, it would only end badly. But after a few moments of protesting, he gave in and returned the kiss. They stayed like that for, what seemed to Miroku like hours, and he was the first to break it off. "I-I'm sorry..." he said, not mentioning what it was he was apologizing for. "I knew I Should of just got swallowed up...Yeah.. that would of been Fast and painless for me..", Sango said, "I should of just given up.." "What?!" Miroku's eyes turned wide with fear. "N-no! Sango, you're wrong!" He knew she was prone to these suicidal thoughts, and each time they scared him half to death. "Sango, you must understand, you've got to keep going, you've got to stay alive, for your brother....for me." His cursed hand cupped her cheek, his violet eyes reflecting the sadness in his heart. "I know these dark thoughts that plague your mind, and you think you suffer alone, but that's not true. You know my curse, you know my fate if Naraku is not destroyed. Every day I wake up to the reality that these might be my last moments and the uncertainty, the constant waiting, is torture. I've more than once considered taking control of that which I had no say in;" His eyes darkened, "I've more than once...considered ending the wait. But something changed that, you. You gave me a reason to continue, a reason to work through the pain and sorrow. You, Sango, gave me a reason to try again. You made me want to kill Naraku, to be able to live my life until old age claim my body and soul. But even though you've given me a reason to try, I know I will most likely not live to see Naraku dead; and therefore, I know I cannot give you the life you deserve." Sango answered, "Don't you dare talk about my brother!!... You only saw ONE piece of my mind! Sometimes I wish I was strong.. I wish I was honest.. I wish I wishe I was brave.. I wish I could feel no pain.. I feel so sad.. I feel so angry.. I wished I had power.. I wishe I could change theworld...for you and me...Cause I feel so mad.. Feel so angry..feel so callosped...So lost confused again.." "But Sango, you -are- strong, you -are- brave. So much more than you know." "The days have come and gone..Our lives went by so fast....", she kept saying Miroku just watched her and listened in sad silence. He couldn't think of the words to say to comfort her, to make it ok. No, that was a lie, he did know the words, he just couldn't say them... Sango kept talking, "I was caught off guard all worked up.. For nothing.. I'll swear I'll just take one lifetime to love.." His hand had long ago slipped from Sango's cheek, and now lay limply beside him in the cool grass. The houshi looked up at Sango's face, sillhouetted by the quickly fading sun. "What's the point?" he asked quietly and dejectedly. Sango grabbed Miroku's and got it off her cheek, "The point is no matter what.. I will always have you the in my mind..LOVING YOU".. "But what's the point, Sango?!" He asked again, his voice rising with anger. "Even if I can allow myself to be with you, our love will only end in tragedy...in death... So why torture ourselves with this fantasy of having children and growing old together?!" His violet eyes, though flashing with anger were rimmed with tears as he spoke aloud his one hope to the woman he loved more than his own life. Sango replied, "Then what's the point of loving you...I can't hate you!!...It's now pointless...I'LL eventually die too.. but I'll always know that At least I loved someone...that couldn't be with me....I didn't even have 1 SINGLE YEAR of happiness...All because of the worry that my father and brother might die in battle one day..That's all I thought about... These days I still see the tainted picture painted in my mind..." "I don't know which is worse, worrying someone -might- die, or knowing they will and only worrying when it would happen." The houshi was, of course, speaking of his own father. Throughout his early childhood he knew his father would die, it was just a question of when; but no matter how prepared either thought they were, they still were both shocked when the moment finally came and the kazaana consumed him. "I know the pain you've suffered Sango, and I know it would be ludicrous of me to say I understand it because I don't. No one has been through what you have and felt the way you do. But I do know you suffer from it, and I can't bear to be the cause of more pain in your life. I know how it feels to wait, day after day, for the inevitable death of one you love. And I know how it feels to look on, helpless, as they are taken from you, consumed in a flash of darkness, leaving naught but a crater as proof they even existed... I cannot and will not allow you to feel that pain." Sango said, "No one is here to love me Do you understand me? I can't do anything or be without you.." Sango got up and said, " Oh..Well..It's hopeless...I'm going back...Don't bother getting up.. I can go by myself..." Sango from that moment ignored Miroku..Her eyes were all sad and serious....