Wake Me Up Inside
Disclaimer: I don't own them. I just play with them.
Tears streamed down Higurashi Kagome's young face as she hugged each of her feudal era friends goodbye for the last time. Despite the pain of knowing what the hanyou would do upon her departure, Kagome even managed to hug Inuyasha. He tensed at first in surprise but then hugged her back. When she went to try and remove the rosary around his neck, he shook his head.
"Don't," was all he said. It's all he needed to say to remind her that he still cared for her in his own unique way. Kagome just nodded. Then, without further ado, she turned and leapt through the well for the last time. Shippou's cries continued to ring in her ears as she went.
Kagome gasped and shot up in bed with a start. Why was it that that memory seemed to enjoy haunting her dreams? She groaned and rubbed her tear-dampened eyes. Then, she pulled back the covers and slid out of bed.
A glance at the clock told the girl it was just a few minutes past seven in the morning. A soft curse hissed from her lips as she realized she had to be to campus in an hour. Kagome swiftly picked out her clothes and rushed to hop in the shower. Her social science teacher would have her head if she showed up late. They were, after all, going on a mandatory field trip today.
"Murphy, why do you hate me so?" the miko grumbled as she started getting ready for the day.
At eight o'clock sharp, Kagome pulled into a free parking space in the student parking lot where she was suppose to meet up with the rest of her class. At nineteen years old now, Kagome was attending a university in Tennessee, USA, for a change of scenery from the Japanese sights that began to depress her after her adventures in the feudal era came to an end. She still wasn't exactly happy, and didn't have many friends where she was now, but things were certainly brighter than they had been.
Gathering up her purse and bookbag, Kagome got out of her car and locked it before slamming her door shut. Spinning on her heels, she then turned and strode over to where everyone was gathered at the small shuttle bus that waited to take them to their destination.
"Ah, Kagome. Just in time," the short pudgy instructor said as she pulled her pencil out of her poofy brown curly hair and marked Kagome as present on her clipboard.
"Yes. Sorry about that, Mrs. Johnson," Kagome said, forming the words carefully so as to be understood through her still heavy Japanese accent. "My alarm clock decided to go on strike this morning."
"You're here and on time, so no harm done. Hurry up and get on board. Your buddy is already there waiting," Mrs. Johnson replied. Kagome nodded and stepped onto the bus. A swift examination of the vehicle lead her to find the blond chatterbox she'd been paired up with sitting in the second to last right side seat putting on lip gloss.
'This is going to be a long day,' Kagome thought as she moved to sit down while counting the seconds before Peggy Sue Morgan opened her mouth. She only got to four.
Kagome's mind zoned out as she walked with the rest of her class through the hallways of Helping Hands Hospice. Next to her, Peggy babbled on about the new guy she was dating, but Kagome had long ago lost interest. Not only did she have trouble understanding the girl who talked so fast despite constant reminders to slow down, the topic of discussion was depressing. Kagome's day was already going bad. She didn't need to let it get any worse.
The miko's eyes lifted to the instructor as the woman came to a stop. A sharp elbow to the blond's ribs then promptly muted Kagome's talkative partner. Once everyone's attention was on her, Mrs. Johnson began to speak, "All right. You all know your assignment. Each pair is to follow one of these kind nurses and assist them with one patient. Sarah and Charlotte, you'll go with Mrs. Radley who will be taking care of Mr. Lindoff. Harold and Scott, you'll be going with Mr. Smith to see Mr. Brandt. Carol and Linda, you both will be with Mrs. O'Conner who'll be caring for Mr. Taesho. And Peggy and Kagome, you'll be going with Mrs. Kimbers to see Mrs. Whitson."
"Wait!" Kagome chirped, her heart skipping a beat as she faintly recognized a name. "Mr. Taesho… Are you sure it's Taesho or Taisho?" she inquired, picking up on the possible misinterpretation of a name that stuck out to her like a sore thumb.
"Actually, you're correct on that pronunciation," Mrs. O'Conner answered.
"If it's not too much trouble, could Peggy and I go with you instead?" Kagome pleaded. Mrs. Johnson was about to object, but the two nurses nodded in agreement. "Thank you," Kagome said, bowing out of habit.
"Not a problem. It'd be nice getting a little bit of cultural perspective," Mrs. O'Conner grinned.
"Kagome, you are too cool. You know that right?" Peggy praised cheerfully.
"All right, if that's all the questions, then groups, get to it!" Mrs. Johnson said with a nod.
"Right this way, ladies. And by the way, you can call me Beth," Mrs. O'Conner smiled as she lead down a longer corridor.
"I'm Peggy. This is Kagome. She's from Tokyo! Isn't that totally rad?"
"Yes, it is. The young man we're going to see is Japanese as well, as Kagome picked up on. A rather handsome one at that," Beth smirked.
"He is? Who is he? How old is he? Better yet, why's he here?" Peggy said in her usual non-stop string of chatter.
"Around here, we call him Romeo because he's so young. In fact, he's only twenty three, though he looks even younger than that. What is it with you oriental people that you always look so damn young?" Beth laughed.
"I don't know," Kagome shrugged while smiling softly despite the butterflies in her tummy.
"His records list him as Yue, but I've heard his friends call him other names that I'm not going to try to pronounce. As for the reason why he's here, just over five years ago, he was involved in an automobile accident caused by a drunk driver. His body healed up surprisingly well but for some odd reason his mind just shut down. He's been in a coma ever since," Beth explained.
"Ouch. That sucks. Did they arrest the guy who did it?" Peggy inquired.
"Yes they did."
As they neared a room, Kagome caught sight of a mass of inky blackness glistening in the sunlight pouring into the room from the windows. She squinted her eyes and focused on the face. In that instant, she gasped and froze. Peggy blinked and looked to where the young Japanese girl was looking.
"Oh my god! Check out the hair! And that face…" Peggy squeaked with glee as she caught sight of the patient's long shiny black hair and handsome features.
"I told you he's good looking," Beth grinned. Then she blinked at Kagome, "Kagome? Are you all right?"
"I don't believe it. Ms. Kagome I'm-Through-With-Men is oogling!" Peggy giggled.
Kagome flat out ignored them both. In fact, she never heard them in the first place. Her complete attention was on what little she could see of the figure tucked un bed through the door. Slowly, she began making her way to the room and through the doorway to get a better look. Peggy and Beth watched the trembling foreign girl with concern.
"It can't be…" Kagome whispered.
"Can't be what. Here, let me take your things, Kagome. You look like you're about to faint. That wouldn't be a good thing. Then Mrs. Johnson would-" Peggy shut up as she found Kagome's things getting shoved into her arms.
"Kagome, do you know this young man?" Beth asked, also noting Kagome's state of shock.
"No. It can't be him. It…" Kagome reasoned then slowly crept over to the figure in the bed and peered closer. "Oh my god! Inuyasha!" the girl blurted out as tears welled up in her eyes. All of this was too much for the young miko who swiftly parked her rear in a chair to try and prevent collapsing right then and there.
Penguine: Well? What did you think? I know. Short chapter and cliff hanger ending.. but well I already have more typed. I was looking for a place to break off a teaser story pilot. :
Notes on this story, I realize now that events have happened in the last season of Inuyasha that contradict the plot of this story. So.. consider this an AU or 'what-if' kind of story.