Fly Away

...+…

In my own time, nobody knew
The pain I was goin' through,
And waitin' was all my heart could do…
Hope was all I had, until you came
Maybe you can't see
How much you mean to me…
You were the dawn, breaking the night,
The promise of morning light,
Filling the world, surrounding me…

...+…

The taste of death… My own scarlet blood trailing down the side of my face, my arm… Bitter surrender; the succumbing of defeat.

No one can say that I did not struggle against what held me… I strained, pulled…I tested my bonds to their limits. I tested them again and again; the result never changing. I knew that I could no longer help myself…

I am nothing but a puppet… a puppet with strings attached… And those strings…

Are held by the one who brought me into existence; I waltz for him, my hair blowing in the same wind that I claim to control…

But even the wind is free…

And I dance when my strings are pulled… I leap, I twirl… I kill, I hurt… My actions are not my own… I do what my puppeteer wishes me to… for if I refuse, all he must do is cut the strings that bind me to him…

And I will be free…free from him… but also, free of this world.

The wind only swirls gracefully through the trees, its invisible smile gracing humans and youkai alike in the heat of the day…

The wind has no strings, as I can never command it as I wish… The wind agrees to help me, to aid me in my quest for the freedom I desire…

And for so long, I believed that the way I could find independence, was to obey… Agree to whatever he ordered, and eventually, I would be liberated… If I would only ignore the dull ache in my chest, I would, someday, walk the way I wanted… talk the way I wanted… And smile if I desired to do so…

By the time I realized that obedience wasn't the way to free myself… It was too late… The people who would have been able to help me, once, had become my enemies… Their desire to help overrun by their remembrance of what I had done…

But, what could they do, really?

...+…

"I am asking only your assistance…"

I had begged, pleaded… My head bowed low, my crimson eyes toward the ground… I had ignored my pride and my master's orders to ask for this man's help in freeing me from my bondage…

His amber eyes told me everything I needed to know…

If only you were more… they seemed to tell me. You are simply a puppet, your strings are as easily severed as a single thread… It matters not what I say, or do.

...+…

And I understood, then. I am like a bird with one good wing…unable to fly, but the longing in my eyes tells the world where I would rather be… When I finally believe I have a chance, and my wings have healed… I open my eyes in joy, only to find myself in a gilded cage.

Good for nothing but a pet; a plaything.

He could not help me, and I understand, now. I wish that my existence were different… that I was simply a youkai, and not a slave; as easily killed as any mere human being…as expendable as an insect.

Once the bird in the gilded cage can see daylight no more, it sings not… and it slowly withers away without its freedom…

...+…

I can feel the wind here, surrounded by daisies and other small wildflowers… It sweeps through the valley, and makes me feel free… rather than the cowardly dog that I am; crawling away to die where I can only pray no one will find me…

My right hand lies in front of me, but I cannot move it… My fingers are curled stiffly upwards like a corpse's.

My kimono is burnt and torn…dirty… Though I suppose it does not really matter… My breaths are getting shorter, slower… And once I am gone, it will not matter what I looked like as I died.

My eyes are only half-open now… It won't be much longer, I know it… The wind is sweeping through my loosened hair, tossing it playfully… It's holding me in its embrace, telling me in its own way that things… that things will be fine…

I'll be alright…

I hardly blink when a small sparrow lands on my curled hand… The bird's sorrowful eyes looking deep into my own… It cocks its head to the side, watching me.

"Hello…little one…" I murmur, a faint smile gracing my weary features.

The bird doesn't move.

"…You're…free," I try to explain to it… Freedom… freedom is something I have always desired…I have always wanted to obtain, but I had never come close. This simple sparrow has all the freedom it wants…and yet…it remains perched on my hand…

The small animal suddenly looks up, its eyes wide with alarm… and it spreads its wings and flies away…

I can feel the longing then, even as I move my eyes toward the object that frightened the sparrow. The longing to be able to spread my wings and fly away, whether in fear or in abounding joy.

My breathing is ragged, now… And I can feel the pain spreading throughout my body… my eyes slipping shut… but I see something…

"It's…you…" I whisper softly, my voice hardly even recognizable as my own.

"Shh…" he tells me, his amber eyes softening at my appearance.

And I obey… Not because I am forced to… not because he will kill me if I do not do what he says…

It is because I want to…

"Sesshoumaru-sama?" I hear a small voice question. "Is she going to be alright?"

"Hush, Rin," he tells her, and the small girl tucks a few flowers into my hair, weaving the small chain of daises through my dark locks.

"Isn't she pretty, Sesshoumaru-sama?" she asks him, her voice timid.

"Aa…Rin… She is…" he answers her, and I feel his hand on the side of my face.

A shuddering sigh makes its way through my body… I don't have much longer… Part of my body is numb… I vaguely wonder if perhaps it is from broken bones… or damaged organs.

"A woman such as yourself should not look so undignified," he says flatly, his shadowed eyes lowering to mine.

"I…c…cannot…help it…" I stutter weakly as breathing becomes more difficult.

The look in his eyes hurts… It cuts into my soul, tearing away at the walls I've built up…

Pity, honor
Longing, desolation
Fear, sorrow
Regret…

It makes my heart ache deeply…

I can see it now… I know what he thinks of me… but…

It's too late…

"I…will help you," he tells me as my eyes start to slip closed. His hands close around my sides, lifting my head onto his lap… and as my eyes close for the final time, I see the sky above me…and the wind rustling through my hair, the soft petals of the daisies brushing against my face…

And I know true freedom…

...+…

Disclaimer: InuYasha does not belong to me, nor do the characters of Rin, Sesshoumaru, or Kagura. The lyrics above are from the song "Only Yesterday" by the Carpenters, and I do not own those, either.

Author's Ramblings:

This fiction was written for Sabriel41 for a ficlet-drabble trade. This ended up being a little longer than I originally had planned, but as the idea came to me, I had to write it. I've never actually read this particular part of the manga, and so most of this was written from what lurks in my own imagination. I know it wasn't a happy ending, per se, but I believe that Kagura's truest wish is to be free like the wind…

I hope you enjoyed reading this, and, if you would like to comment on it (good or bad), please feel free to do so by leaving a review.

Hugs and Pawprints!

-KK