Stop picking on me

by Zab

Disclaimer: Man, I barely have enough money to buy gas and you guys think I own Rumiko Takahashi's Inuyasha? Feh. I do, however, own a very nice toy Tetsuiaga, which I will use on people who read and don't review.

AN: it's a one shot, just a little blurb in the life and times of Inuyasha and friends. The ending is a tad gross, but I think it's funny. Meep.

*edit* just went through and polished some of the grammer. Nothing major, other than removing that annoying glossary in the beginning.

Fic start:

After a refreshing soak in a serene pond, Kagome was more than ready to bundle up tight in her sleeping bag, snug and warm against the autumn chill. She cast a glance up in the pine tree above her, but saw nothing except darkness. She lumbered wearily up the slope to their campsite, vaguely catching snatches of sound from the boughs above her. She smiled shyly, slipping the towel from around her hair. She felt oddly comforted knowing Inuyasha was up there, silently playing bodyguard for her. Reaching the crest of the hill, she sighed, scuffling her sandal-clad feet amongst the aromatic pine needle carpet of the forest floor.At least that's what you'd like to think, she brooded. You know he's just protecting his 'investment'. An unfounded suspicious thought bubbled its way to the surface of her thoughts.

He might even have been trying to watch me bathe, the pervert. Miroku's been around him too long.

She unconsciously made a face at that particular idea. The others looked up at her arrival, save Inuyasha, who was most likely still in a tree.

You know, for all his indignance about being mistaken for a cat demon today, I never knew a dog that could climb trees half as well as he does. That and the ears and the claws...

She stifled a giggle at the thought of Inuyasha acting like Buyo, rubbing against her legs and purring for ramen. A tail had even crept its way into her vision. Neko-yasha...

Kirara and Shippo were curled up together, already asleep, every inch the poster demons for cuteness.

Miroku was the only one still awake, nursing a swollen cheek. It didn't take a genius to figure out that mystery...

Suddenly a red blur dropped down from the trees before her. She gasped and clutched at her heart, startled.

"Hey, why do you smell like-"but he was cut off by Kagome's indignant screech.

"HEY what do you think you're doing dropping down like that! You could have given me a heart attack! Can't you just tap people on the shoulder or say hi like a normal person?" she scolded.

"What the hell? It's not my damn fault if you human wenches don't know how to handle surprise! Geez! Get a goddamn decent sense of smell..."

THUMP

"Aargh, you wench"

later

The fire was nothing more than embers at this point, burnt pine smell still wafting lazily along with a thin trickle of smoke. Kagome couldn't quite sleep, but she didn't want to get up from her bag either. She was actually engaged in a rather delicate operation and didn't want to be disturbed at present. Unfortunately, the ruse didn't last long.

"Shit" she cursed, voice barely above a whisper. "Got carried away again."

"What are you muttering about now?" a gruff voice said, just above her. She glared viciously at Inuyasha, perched neatly in the crook of a branch attached to one of the looming pines.

"None of your business." She said coldly, blushing all the same.

"Keh." He snorted.

Moments passed in the silence. The fire crackled, a frog croaked, and an annoyed hanyou sighed.

"It's keeping both of us awake, so you might as well tell me."

Kagome cringed, did he really know? She feigned ignorance.

"What are you talking about?"

"C'mon Kagome."

"What? It's nothing you should worry about."

He shifted, drawing in a leg that he'd previously had dangling leisurely in the air. His arms crossed.

"Gods, Kagome, stop being stubborn."

"I'm not being stubborn! There's nothing wrong."

"Then why do I smell blood on your arm?"

Kagome froze. They hadn't been in a battle recently, so she couldn't lie and say it was that, and even if they had been, she'd bathed and shouldn't smell bloody. Under normal circumstances, that is.

"I still say it's none of your business."

"C'mon Kagome." He said, his soft tone surprising her, "how'd you get blood on you?"

"Are you...are you worried about me?" she teased, well, half teased.

It was now his turn to freeze.

"Ah...ah...can't a guy ask a simple question?" he squeaked, then hurriedly assumed his normal surly attitude. "I mean...uh...can't a guy ask a simple question without getting the third degree?"

How Kagome hated hearing that modern phrase that she'd used so many times in argument with him turned back on her. Especially now.

"Go away Inuyasha. It's still none of your business."

"c'mon," he nagged, "I know it's not your monthly blood so what is it? It obviously belongs to you."

"Well who else's would it be... Wait a minute." She paused, turning white. "You can tell when I'm... menstruating?" she said, using his terminology.

"Oh yeah." He said offhandedly. "Smells different then. You start smelling different when you ovulate too, you know."

Kagome sat up, staring at Inuyasha with a mixture of wonder and disbelief.

"But, but you've never said anything about it before..."

"Feh. I'm not an idiot. I know how touchy you females are when you're in heat. I'd like to keep my head on its shoulders, and all my limbs intact while I'm at it, so I don't say anything." He gave a sort of half-snort.

Kagome sank back down, puzzled by what to do with this new information. Some things were supposed to be private! Yet, she couldn't help but feel that maybe someday, the information could be valuable. How or why she wasn't sure, but her miko powers of precognition were odd that way.

"So now that I have your attention, are you gonna tell me why you have blood smell on you or not? You been out fightin' somethin' and not telling me Kagome?" at this he gave her a quarky little smirk, which quickly dissolved back into an annoyed scowl. Kagome hrumffed and pulled the cover back over her head.

"Goodnight Inuyasha."

"You wench! Tell me already, stop being stubborn."

"Oh I'M being stubborn!"

"I could just come down there myself and sniff it out being I being friggin' nice and LETTING you have a CHANCE to just TELL me!"

"Oh wake up the whole camp why don't you!"

"If you'd just stop being stupid and tell me why the hell you have blood on you, I'll shut up and leave you alone! There! On your arm! What is that?"

"OH JUST SHUT UP ALREADY!" she screeched, sitting straight up. Needless to say the rest of their companions had started to rouse themselves and were catching the tail end of their argument, which was proving to be quite entertaining.

"YOU REALLY WANT TO KNOW?"

Inuyasha managed a panicked nod.

"I WAS PICKING MY NOSE OK!" she took a breath. "YES I KNOW IT'S GROSS, BUT I RAN OUT OF TISSUES AND I HAD A BOOGER AND I COULDN"T FIND A LEAF IN THIS STUPID PINE GROVE SO I PICKED MY NOSE AND WHIPED IT ON MY SLEEVE!" she gasped for her second wind. She got it.

"IT BLED OK?IT FRIKKIN STARTED TO BLEED, AND WAS GOING TO WASH IT IN THE MORNING, BUT NOOOOOOO," she intoned, pointing an enraged, shaking finger at the cringing half demon, "YOU HAD TO PRESS THE ISSUE AND NOW THE WHOLE DAMN WORLD KNOWS THANKS TO YOUR BRILLIANT INTERVIEWING SKILLS! YOU SHOULD BE ON LETTERMAN!" she finished, knowing he would have no idea what the last comment meant. She practically ripped the sleeping bag off of her, swinging her legs out and grabbing her gear, backpack, sleeping bag and all. She drug her things behind her, a little ways into the open, deliberately not underneath a tree. She crammed her body back into the back, turned her back on the dumbfounded group and crossed her arms, as if that was that. She rolled up her sleeves as an afterthought.

For a second, the group blinked, then looked at Kagome, then looked at Inuyasha, then rolled over in their own sleeping positions as if saying 'this is Inuyasha's problem, let him handle it. (Save Shippo who stared a shocked second longer at Kagome thinking 'she picks her nose? Ewwww...')

later

"Kagome...?" a voice said tentatively.

So tentative, so sweet and shy and submissive was the voice that she thought it was some incarnation of a younger Sota or Shippo, asking to be escorted to the bathroom or something.

It was Inuyasha. Ears pressed flat to his head submissively, head near the ground with him on all fours, eyes pleading up to her, he was every inch a very sorry puppy who knew it had done something Bad. All he missed was a drooping tail.

He nuzzled her shoulder with his nose. "You still mad at me?"

No answer. Not good.

"Gomen. Gomen...nesai." He leaded harder into his next nuzzle, making it more of a caress.

"Are ya gonna talk to me today?" he pleaded and leaned back into a crouch, finally plopping his sorry self to the ground to await his fate.

Kagome's heart thumped painfully. It had become a very familiar pain, especially in the last two months. It always felt like when something you had worked hard to glue back together had shattered mid-construction. Sometimes though, it was not as painful as that, sometimes it merely felt like the thing had melted, and was easily molded back. This was a time of the lesser pain, but it still hurt.

Why can't you be like this more often? She moaned inwardly instead of a jerk-faced baka?

She rolled over to look at him.

She gave in at the look in his eyes.

"Only if you carry my stuff for me today." She propped herself up on one elbow. "And don't complain about anything, especially," she paused for effect, "when I go home later today."

For the fraction of a second, or maybe even in the figment in her imagination, she saw Inuyasha droop and have his eyes fill with a deep melancholy look as she added the last bit. But then, as if it had dawned on him that she wasn't angry or sad or refusing to forgive him, he brightened and snatched her bag up.

"Well then, hurry up wench! Days a-wastin'!" He trotted off with her things in his enthusiasm that he was weakly trying to mask with impatience.

She laughed and called after him.

"Hey Baka! My clothes are in there! I can't go anywhere with out getting dressed! INUYASHA!"

And thus was the status quo maintained.

AN: yay! All done! R&R everybody!