Just A Starving Writer
Disclaimer: nope, not mine.
Author's Rant: This is what my bitchy muse considers amusing. In reality, it is merely a story conglomerate: a mixture of other story ideas that Ms. Muse came up with while on one drunken binge or another but either couldn't remember the details when she sobered up, or plain never had enough to start with. So the solution? Put all the ideas together in one story!
I apologize in advance for the stupidity and goofiness of this piece. Send all complaints to my schnapps addicted muse as I have neither the patience nor self image to deal with them. And before you utter a word, I am well aware of the rampant OOCness.
In the meantime, I will continue to obey the bitch's wishes and enjoy writing such a goofy story. Just remember, it has no depth or meaning, it is simply a stupid story.
Enjoy if you can.
Updated 2.5.05: Deleted stand alone ANs (formerly chapters 19 and 27) in preparation for massive edit.
Part 1: In the beginning
If there was anything Kagome had learnt in a year of time traveling, it was that the well was a fickle mistress. So really, it should have come as no surprise when on the anniversary of her first trip to the Feudal Era, on her sixteenth birthday, it would stop working.
She had gone home to visit and spend the personal holiday with her family, whom she had been neglecting. However, the next day, fully prepared to continue the hunt for the Shikon jewel shards, she had an unexpected crash at the bottom of the present day side of the well. It didn't seem to matter that she still had a good quarter of the jewel in her possession, and it didn't seem to matter that she tried every which way to return to fulfill her duty. The well just would not take her back.
After a week of unsuccessful attempts, and one sprained ankle, Inuyasha returned to bring her back. He ignored her insistence that the well was not working for her and decided to test the theory for himself. He only succeeded in spraining her other ankle. Seriously offended and worried, Kagome spent hour after frustrating hour interpreting the well's previous antics in a sad attempt to understand what was happening. She could reach no conclusion, and apparently neither could anyone on the other side.
During the first few months of Feudal Era seclusion, Inuyasha was a constant visitor, always bringing news, updates on Jewel progress, jewel shards if the group had been lucky, and ideas on how to once again join them. Still, nothing worked. She had been consigned to the role of distant cheerleader and it was ill suiting.
Eventually, she got over the first symptoms of Time Travel Withdrawal and was able of resuming some of the life she had before the whole thing began. And so, for two years following the unexpected closing of the well, she studied hard and made amazing progress in her school work. It was quite the feat, actually, but in reality it was just a diversion to keep from worrying about the progress of the jewel hunt. After all, it was slow going for the remainder of the group without her to sense fragments. And, if you listened to the hanyou, it was hard even keeping spirits up without her around.
However, now that she was in her last year of school, so close to reaching the end of that particular journey, and at the top of her class none the less, she found herself unable to concentrate because Inuyasha, who had always made it a point to visit her at least once a month, hadn't been seen for well over five. Approaching her eighteenth birthday, she was sure that something was terribly wrong on the other side of the well and it distracted her to no end. The fragments of the jewel she held kept Naraku from using the full power of the Shikon, but what if he had the rest? Could they stop him then?
And so it was with a heavy heart that she found herself sitting on the edge of the well on her eighteenth birthday, feeling much older, much wiser, and still completely childish at being unable to aide her friends and fulfill her duty.
"Can't you see that I have to help them?" Kagome asked the well forcefully. "It's obvious something is wrong and I can't do anything here. I'm the only one that can save them and you know it."
She jumped in, as she had done at least three times a week since the ordeal started, and just as every time before, nothing happened. She landed at the bottom with a thump, that by now she had grown accustomed to.
"Please," she whispered, half in reverence to the spirits that controlled the well and half because her constricting throat would only allow it that much. "Please let me help them. I will do anything and everything to finish this. I will sacrifice myself if you just let me return and fix this."
She sat down and rested against the grimy stones, tilting her head up to focus on the ceiling of the well house.
"What do I have to do to prove that I will succeed?"
And, oddly enough, that seemed to be the magic phrase. Even as she watched, the wooden ceiling faded into the familiar blue magic swirl and soon she was deposited back into the well at a time five hundred years in the past.
She couldn't believe it, really. Had she known she was going to be making this trip, she would have brought her yellow bag. After all, it still stood at the ready inside the door of the well house, waiting for whenever it would next be needed. But no, she had not been prepared for this and therefore had nothing with her save her house keys, a few bucks, and the tiny, dull, and completely useless army knife keychain that Souta had given her as a joke. Come to think of it, she didn't even have the jewel shards.
"Shit," she said in exasperation, even as she climbed the vines up with a lighter heart. Reaching the top, she sat on the lip of the well and looked around, gaining her bearings and taking a breather. Though she had worked out as much as she could, there was simply nothing the same as well climbing.
"Well, good old well, if you want me to prove myself, I guess I just will." It was as much a reassurance to the spirits of the well as to herself. After all, considering her last words, she pretty much expected this to be a test of some sorts.
Taking off for the village, she went over her options. First thing, she would find Kaede and get updated on the shard hunt and hunters. And then, depending on the information she received, she would search out the shards or the shard hunters. Though she still held out hope that they were alive, she was preparing herself for the worst. It had been five months without word and that could only mean bad news.
Inside a grimy dungeon, two humans, a hanyou, and two small youkai were shackled to a roughly hewn rock wall that seemed to be more alive than they were. Though they had pretty much resigned themselves to being stuck in the dark and dismal place, a sudden spark of energy raced through them and the hanyou's ears swiveled and perked up.
"Hey," Inuyasha began in a hushed tone from a throat that was sore from lack of use. "Did you guys feel that?"
"Yes," Miroku began. "Something has changed."
"She's back. Kagome is back." The hanyou's certainty left no room for doubt.
"But how did she get through the well?" Sango asked curiously.
For a second, everyone could only ponder the different mystical and magical means of unlocking locked magical time traveling wells. Finally, the fox child broke the silence.
"Maybe she asked it nicely?"