This chapter is short beyond belief, I realize. But to be frank, I have no more interest in this whatsoever.

Kagome had no idea how she'd gotten here. She could have sworn she was kneeling besides Kouga's battered body just a few minutes ago, but now she found herself in his cave, while Kouga, grinning and cheerful, was trying to get her to eat some raw rabbit.

"What the heck is going on?" she asked, lifted her eyes from the bloody piece of meat being waved before her eyes.

Kouga laughed some more. "Instant transportation, Kagome!"


"I'm capable of instant transportation. I'm just that cool. (A/N: yah so I no this isn't true but im lazy and don't want to right stupid filler about how they travel. Talk about lame. You know what was uber lame? Moby Dick was uber lame. All that description of travel was soooooo boring. If I had ritten that they wuld have reached the big white penguin or whatever that animal is by chap. 2 and it would be so much better, trust me.) Hey, why don't you eat some of the rabbit?"

Glancing over again at the meat, she couldn't help but feel nauseous. It was gross. Way gross. Kagome whimpered. "Kouga, um… is there anything else I can eat? Or could you please cook the rabbit?"

Kouga looked her over sternly. His woman didn't quite see how it worked, did she. She just didn't understand that he HAD to try to feed her raw meat. His guidebook to manliness said so! (You and Your Testosterone: Making the Most of an Otherwise Problematic Biological Relationship) It was demonic, and on top of that, it was manly.

Thank god he didn't have to eat any of it himself, though. Gross.

But looking at her sad eyes like he was now, he couldn't help but feel bad. She shouldn't have to eat it if she didn't want to. So, putting his reputation as a manly man at stake, Kouga gritted his teeth, set his shoulders, and proclaimed, "Eh, I changed my mind. You don't have to eat it. Don't worry about it."

It was worth it. Kouga smiled inwardly to see her face regain its color as Kouga carefully laid the meat out of sight. But what he wasn't prepared for was her sudden jump towards him as she threw her arms around him in a brief hug of thanks. He was, however, quick to recover.

Sliding his arms firmly around her waist, he tugged her closer to him before she had a chance to step away. The guidebook—or, rather, The Manbook—was very clear about situations like this.

"When confronted with a sudden embrace, you should never simply accept it courteously and then let it end just as courteously. This is far too polite and chivalrous. It will get you nowhere.

Instead, be aggressive. Don't be afraid to draw out the embrace as long as possible. If you want to come across as the Suave But Persuasive Pervert, try a grope. If you want to come across as the Hopelessly Obsessed Yet Genuine Suitor, try a desperately passionate kiss. The options are endless. But If you do none of these things, there's only one thing you're going to come across as, and that's thing is a WUSS.

See how simple it all can be?"

So Kagome was surprised when Kouga, instead of letting her go, continued to grip her shoulders tightly, one of his hands steadying her back with the other smoothed down her ruffled hair. Tired from her escape from the castle, she let herself sink into the embrace, glad to feel secure from the horror of the past day.

His lips moving against her neck, Kouga whispered, "Hey, there's a conference for the youkai rulers in the region. You should come with me. You'll get to experience what it would be like if you accepted my offer and became my woman."

Kagome frowned. "A youkai conference? What kinds of youkai go to this thing?"

"Oh, you know, the usual. The Lord of the North. The Lord of the South. The Lord of the West comes, sometimes. The Lord of the East."

"…so only four youkai go? Including yourself, that is."

Kouga's hand stopped combing through her hair as he stopped to laugh softly. "Don't be ridiculous, Kagome."

"But that's all four directions! East, West, North, and South!"

"There's so much more than just that. There's the Lord of the Northeast, The Lord of the North-North-West With a Little Bit of Land in the Southwest That's Really Not Important Anyways, The Lord of Swampy Places With Mosquitoes, The Lord of Swampy Places With Some Mosquitoes But Generally More Ticks, and even The Lord of That Itchy Spot on Your Back You Can Never Reach. Tons of us come."

Kagome shifted impatiently. That was all nice and good, but she was starting to feel suffocated. "Um, Kouga? You can let go now." Kouga obeyed, a slight blush on his cheeks, but the determined glint in his eyes remained. She sighed to see it. He was hopeless. But before she dealt with that—

"Would Sesshoumaru be there this year?"

"Oh, probably not. He usually has lots of other duties he has to take care of."

"In that case, I'll go." Inwardly, she gave a sigh of relief. It's a surefire way to avoid him and Inuyasha. I could just look at like, I don't know, a vacation with an overly amorous guy-friend. I'll have nothing to worry about. Nothing at all."