Title: Midori

Author: Anaphalis

Foreword: Well this is what happens when I try to play around with Sesshoumaru characterization and color symbolism. I think that Sesshoumaru is a fascinating character and often very difficult for me to understand. I've often wondered what really drives him in life and how he and his world view might fit into the future shown by Kagome and her friends and family.

So from what I was able to find, midori (green) is often symbolic of eternal life and, strangely, both good luck and misfortune while gold is considered the color of the heavens. Kuromoto can be roughly translated as "black base/origin/source".

And if I've gotten any of this completely wrong- please let me know!

Summary: It was a good summer. One Shot.

Disclaimer: Inuyasha belongs to Rumiko Takahashi and Shounen Sunday.


He was old.

There was no way around it.

He might never die of natural causes, he might never feel the frailty of aging bones, but his memory was not as protected as his body.

Sitting there, in that pseudo-Western café in old Tokyo, he wanted to finally give in to the desire to find a hole somewhere and… fade.


Oh he knew his hypocrisy. He had been so angry when his companions started fading- it was a sign of weakness to die in anything but battle. And his purpose had kept him strong.

Now though… Now…

He pushed the thoughts, the doubts away as he stared out onto the street. The potted trees outside the window were shadows of the forests he tasted when he closed his eyes. But he had survived when the forests had not, and in his own way he had been as diminished as those pathetic trees in their pots.

It wasn't even the disguises, the never-ending stench, the petty problems of these short-lived weaklings that diminished him. It was that he had been reduced to a single purpose to provide color to the never-ending emptiness of his life.

He couldn't kill without attracting attention.

The Western Lands were a memory over-run with apartment buildings and highways.

All he had was a promise. A promise to a lively human woman who was once a lively human girl.

"Not in this life, maybe not even the next life or the life after, but in one of my lives, I'll meet you again. Promise me that you'll wait. I think that we need to meet again."

He had almost openly scoffed at her, but somehow that damn pulse in the back of his mind that he still associated with that thrice-damned sword of his father had made him agree.

In hindsight, he was grateful for the agreement. She had disappeared after that and, true to her words, he had never seen her again. He had torn apart Japan to find her and come up with nothing. Then the promise had taken on new meaning. He had needed to know that she had indeed moved on, that her soul had been laid to rest and had found another chance for happiness. Strangely, it was the only aspect of his life that hurt more with time rather than fading into the dullness of memory.

He was startled by the jangle of the bell at the entrance and turned towards the door. The woman looked towards him and he froze.

There was… something in that face that he wanted to remember, but it was gone as soon as he blinked.

He recognized the start of a sinking feeling in his stomach as the woman walked towards him and pulled out a chair to sit at his table.

It seemed that he didn't need Tensaiga to get in trouble.

"Forgive me… but you remind me of someone I used to know."

Wasn't that his line?


He hadn't meant to give her his assumed name, but that throb in the back of his head, that same throb that Tensaiga used to incite, was forcing his mouth.


She smiled and dear gods, he knew.

He closed his eyes briefly, the pain a pulsing ache in the back of his head.

All those years… It could be coincidence, but he had lived just long enough to know that nothing in his cursed life was ever coincidence.

His ward had had those eyes… and so had that priestess. And now he knew why.

His freedom sat in front of him, pushing a cup towards him.


They drank in silence.

He stared at the tiny green fragments on the bottom of his empty cup. He- he was finished. The next time the desire overtook him he wouldn't fight the fading. And maybe he was no longer as angry about it as he used to be. This woman though, this woman (with Rin's eyes) deserved better than the agony of not-knowing that had eaten away at him all these years…

He rose, his mind's eye already fixed on a remote hill in Western Japan, preserved in quiet greenery for five hundred years.


He looked back at her as he stood in the entrance.

"The girl in the fuku survived the battle for the jewel. There were no offspring. He buried her under the tree by the shrine. This Sesshou- I believe that they were… happy."

He didn't look back to see her reaction. He had no desire to witness someone else's freedom so soon after finally winning his own.

Outside, the wind threw the falling leaves against him and he was forced to brush the gold-shot green from where they tried to tangle in his hair. For a split-second he held one in his hand before releasing it to the ground.

Better for a leaf to end in the gold of fall than the cold of winter.

But even better to realize that change was necessary, that even eternal green became faded with time.

He turned, almost involuntarily, to where the woman stood watching him.

"It was a good summer."

"Yes. It was."

-The End-

Updated 04-03-05