A/N: Okay, my first Inuyasha fic so be nice. It's SesshoumaruRin. IF you don't like it, please don't read, beacsue I don't want to be murdered for the pairing! I just couldn't get the story out of my head, so here it is. THis is chapter one of five and I think I'll be posting them all this week... fastest posting ever for me. But it's my birthday present to Sanela! Enjoy girl!
CHAPTER 1: The Fateful Experiment
Sesshoumaru looked up as a loud noise sounded from the clearing a short ways away. He absently wondered what Jaken had done to upset Rin this time. He glanced at the sun, well on its way toward setting. The toad demon was probably interrupting her dinner preparations. He shook his head, but made no move to rise. They would live. Or, at least, Rin would. Jaken… now that was another matter entirely. But it mattered little to him.
He returned to his contemplation of the Tenseiga. A sword that could save up to one hundred lives in a single stroke. That was what Toutousai has said.
Why had his father commissioned such a sword?
His father had been the great lord of the western lands. He was powerful, almost invincible. A demon envied by all.
Sesshoumaru ran the claws of his newly reattached left arm over the blade. He rarely unsheathed it, but today it had seemed to call to him.
Who was he really?
In his mind his father had been a distant, powerful figure. Strong, brave, in control. In his mind he had made his father in the image of himself. But what if that was not who his father had been?
What if one could be powerful and in control, and even respected… and not be cold and aloof.
A memory from his childhood surfaced. It was of his father, laughing as he spun a young Sesshoumaru around until they collapsed on the ground together.
Sesshoumaru couldn't remember the last time he had laughed as an adult.
When had that happened?
When had he decided that only total lack of emotion would serve him as a demon lord? His father obviously hadn't felt that way.
What foolish thoughts
He re-sheathed the sword, trying to push his conflicted thoughts aside.
I must put aside these doubts. My ways have served me well until now. They will continue to do so.
He heard a soft laugh float above the wind, through the forest.
The name sent his mind spinning down a whole new trail of uncertainties. What had possessed him to save her? A human girl who had nothing to do with him? It was foolhardy and every day he told himself he was going to kill her. Or at least leave her in some village as they passed by.
And yet, it had been ten years now, and Rin was still with him.
That troubled him.
In Sesshoumaru's mind his father had had but one weakness. His fondness for humankind. It had been that that had led to his love for Inuyasha's mother. And Sesshoumaru was convinced that love had led to his ignoble death.
What else could it have been? His father had been a great warrior.
And, he snorted derisively; his younger brother – the half breed mutt – shared that fatal weakness. First allowing himself to love the priestess, who had sealed him, and then the girl from the future – her reincarnation – who had released him.
Did he share that fatal flaw? Was that what had compelled him to save Rin that day? To resurrect her?
Yet, he felt nothing for the girl, save a slight protectiveness.
Was it, then, as he had first said? That the sword had Tenseiga had compelled him to save her? Did it also compel him to keep her with him?
It was an intriguing thought, and one that somewhat quelled the turmoil created by his musings. If it were only the result of the sword…
Then he was safe.
Sesshoumaru looked up at Jaken's call. He almost smirked at the nervousness betrayed in the toad's voice. Instead he speared him with a cold glance.
Jaken shifted uneasily.
Good, let him squirm.
The toad knew he did not like to be interrupted.
After a long moment, which Sesshoumaru suspected was infinitely longer for his servant, Sesshoumaru spoke quietly. "What is it Jaken?"
"I'm sorry my lord, but Rin… Rin wanted me to call you for dinner." Jaken stumbled over his words in his apologetic rush, but he somehow managed to get it all out.
Sesshoumaru nodded, "Very well. You may tell her I will join her shortly."
"Y-yes my lord! Right away!" and the old toad ran clumsily back toward the clearing.
Resigned, Sesshoumaru rose elegantly to his feet and turned toward the clearing.
"I'll get it." Rin said quickly as Sesshoumaru pushed back from the table, plate in hand. He had finally conceded that it was probably best for Rin if they kept regular eating habits.
He nodded slightly and set it back on the table. She quickly snatched it up and hurried to the basin of water, humming happily.
Sesshoumaru watched her disinterestedly as she bustled about the small house. It was another concession he had made for her. After all, she was no longer a small child, happy to stay out in the open. She was seventeen, a young woman, and she needed some measure of stability and privacy. So he had had this house built. It was small, but she seemed to like it.
His eyes flicked over her once more.
Yes, she was no longer a child. Her head now came nearly to his chin, and she had filled out. He supposed, looking at her from an objective point of view, that she was attractive.
Unbidden his earlier thoughts resurfaced. He was about to push them aside when another thought came to the foreground.
Why not test the concern?
Here, right in front of him, was the perfect way in which to try himself and see if he possessed that fatal weakness shared by both his father and half brother. Why not take advantage of it?
She turned slightly at his cold command. Funny how she never seemed to notice his severity - his austere and disdainful manner. She smiled at him.
"Yes, Lord Sesshoumaru."
"I would like to try an experiment, for which I will require your assistance."
She tilted her head quizzically, but he knew she would not disobey.
"Okay." She set the dish she was drying down and turned to face him straight on.
"No." he held up a hand to stop her as she made as if to move toward him. "Stay there." Better that they stay away from the door. Jaken did not often come into the small building, claiming to detest its human atmosphere, but there was always the off chance…
He came toward her and paused before her. She watched him, clearly wondering what he was about to do, but also clearly with full trust in him. How strange for a human to have such trust in a demon, especially one as heartless as he.
In a single smooth motion he tilted her chin and brought his head down toward hers, pressing his lips to hers in a kiss. He closed his eyes and after a moment he sensed her eyes drift closed as well. She made no other move either towards or against him. But her reaction was unimportant to him. It was his own reaction he was attempting to gauge.
He purposefully brought his senses to focus on the softness of her lips, the scent of her hair, the warmth of her body so close to his.
Nothing he thought, and something akin to relief swept through him. I feel nothing
He released her, not un-gently, and turned away without even meeting her eyes.
"That was most helpful Rin." He said emotionlessly, stepping away from her, vaguely aware that she looked very confused. A thought occurred to him and he paused. "Rin," he waited until he sensed her full attention was on him. "The next time someone kisses you, you would do well to respond." And then he resumed his exit, walking unhurriedly out the door and back toward his favorite tree.
The moment he was out of sight Rin slumped against the back wall of the house. Her fingertips brushed her lips lightly.
"Did he… did he kiss me?" she asked the empty room in a hushed whisper. "But – why?"
She didn't know. He had said it was an experiment. An experiment on what? For what purpose? Had he found the answer he was looking for? Whatever his reasons she had discovered nothing but questions. And the most important one of all…
Why was her heart beating so quickly?
A/N: Please reivew, please don't flame. Thanks!