By: Comm. Butler
Disclaimer: Any character from Inuyasha doesn't belong to me, but the character Lin does so don't take her from me or I shall send Sesshomaru to spite you!
Author's Note: To meet the demand, while it wasn't huge I was pushed to write more and instead of putting on another chapter of Trials of Courtship, I decided to make a sequel… (Plus I really needed to use the title; I thought it was way perfect). Anywho this is the ONLY thing that I don't have Writer's Block on so what do you know.
I also must congratulate my friend littledemonwolf on finding a potential publisher for something, which is really good, but unfortunately I do not have the liberty to release the title. I hope she will still let me edit and make notes on it though. (Hint, hint) I would also like to congratulate one of my friend's sisters on her recent interview with Tokyopop, I cross my fingers and hope all goes in her favor.
Now that I've thanked/ congratulated everyone except my parents and the Academy let's get on with the story and once again I warn you that if you haven't read Trials of Courtship please do!
"You are aware you can't take all of that?" Sesshomaru looked at the bag slung over my shoulder. It was my backpack that I took on hunting trips when I still lived in the states. By now I was out of the wedding kimono and in a tank top and jeans and the most comfortable pair of hiking boots I had brought. You can never be too prepared. I had also taken a blue kimono top and pulled it on as well. I really liked wearing the kimono tops with long sleeves and being able to combine it with jeans.
"Of course I can if I carry it and it won't take too much room."
"Ah-Un is ready!" Rin proclaimed as she skipped over to us. She too had changed into her little orange and yellow kimono.
"Very well Rin. Are those sandals?" Sesshomaru inquired looking at Rin's feet. Before Rin could answer I did.
"Yes Sesshomaru, I traded for them in the village so her feet wouldn't get sore." Sesshomaru nodded and my stomach growled suddenly.
"You should eat Lin." Sesshomaru stated flatly and uninterested.
"That's probably a good idea. I haven't eaten in a day or two I think." Sesshomaru looked down at me disapprovingly. I smiled sheepishly and set my pack down.
"Jaken, find her something to eat. Rin, come we will travel tomorrow, Ah-Un will need to be unsaddled."
"Yes Lord Sesshomaru." Rin looked put out but followed Sesshomaru anyway. I followed Jaken to the opposite end and to the East. He stopped in front of what I assumed was Sesshomaru's room. I had only been here once before and it was dark then, in fact it was getting awfully cloudy now come to think of it. Jaken gestured for me to follow him inside and I did. We walked into a well-lit or rather two rooms. One set of panels had been pushed aside to combine the two rooms. I saw everything I had from the Red Room had been brought here. Jaken moved pretty fast or maybe Sesshomaru had this planned. Naw.
"Eat quickly Lord Sesshomaru will return soon." Jaken began to leave and I stopped him.
"Jaken? Did you know Sesshomaru was alive this whole time?"
"Of course my Lady. It was at his insistence that I not tell you and that…"
"You move all of my stuff here while he and I had a joyous reunion today." All the pieces were falling into place now.
"He didn't phrase it like that but yes." Jaken flinched like I would throw something at him, but I replied.
"One I'm saving it for Sesshomaru. Two I see, and three thank you."
"Enjoy your dinner my Lady." Jaken left and I began to eat quickly and quietly not paying attention to anything else until I had licked the last bit of soy sauce from my bowl. I hadn't realized how hungry I was.
I was entirely finished and was moseying about the large room when Sesshomaru entered.
"What are you doing in here?" He looked even for his cool headedness a little flustered. I smiled.
"Funny I thought you would know and just to quiet your fears I don't care if we share a bedroom there are… Oh! That was not good!" Maybe it was my imagination but I hadn't meant for it to sound the way it did, if that made any coherent sense. Maybe he wouldn't notice, yeah that was it he wouldn't notice. I plastered a grin on my face and turned back around. The look he met me with made me turn an even deeper shade of red. It was one of those 'I know what you were implying and I do not approve.' Looks.
"I didn't mean for it to sound like that, so let's just ignore it shall we?" This was getting awkward.
"Right I think I'll just close this panel now." I pulled on the panel behind me but instead of it sliding smoothly it stuck and wouldn't budge. I pulled harder while Sesshomaru stood watching me struggle.
"You could help you know!" I snarled as I put one foot on a support beam to add some extra force. Sesshomaru walked to the end of the panel and I head a soft tap and the panel moved at a rapid speed hitting me square in the face. I fell onto the floor and Sesshomaru towered over me. I held my nose and snapped,
"JERK! What did you do to it?"
"I moved it. Now do you wish me to close this on top of you?"
"No…" I rolled out of the way and Sesshomaru closed the panel the rest of the way.
"I do believe you are on the incorrect side Lin." My name came out as a mere whisper. He was still having trouble using it.
"Huh?" I looked around and saw I was indeed on Sesshomaru's side of the room and I slammed my fist on the slightly dusty floor.
"There goes another kimono." Sesshomaru commented. I looked down at myself and saw blood on my hands and on the kimono; a couple of drops were on the floor.
"The blood will need to clot." Sesshomaru knelt beside me and slipping off my kimono top he pressed it firmly against my nose. He leaned my head back slightly to rest against his chest and we stayed that way until the bleeding stopped and awhile after. I pulled away from him finally.
"Thanks. This time I'll get on the right side." I took the kimono and sliding the panel I crossed into my side of the room and closed the panel behind me. Several of my clothing chests were on the far wall as well as the two bags I brought from Tokyo. I silently slipped out of my clothes and into pajamas before collapsing on the futon. I could hear Sesshomaru rustling a bit and his steady breath as I lay there. I heard his armor and his swords make soft clanks as they were removed and sat on the floor and after the floorboards creaked there was no more sound. Great I was laying in the dark with just a thin little rice panel between Sesshomaru and myself… Crap! Why the hell was I thinking like that? Because I was 'affectionate' towards him. Riight. I crawled under the linens and curled up into a ball closing my eyes tightly. It wasn't long before sweet sleep drifted over me.
I sat bolt upright at the sound of the thunder reverberating in my room. I jumped when it rang out again and lightning illuminated my room in it's eerie light. I lay back down and my head was wet as well as most of the bed I was laying on. Oh great, a leak in the roof, just what I needed. I got up and made my way through the abrupt changing of light and dark to my duffel where I promptly changed out of my wet clothes. The black T-shirt I had on now read 'Bugger off!' I pushed back the panel and walked into Sesshomaru's side of the room as the storm raged outside. A single small lamp was burning, but no Sesshomaru greeted me. His armor and swords lay in a heap with his sash. I moved to start a fire, which began to blaze and light the room rapidly. I then moved to straighten the sash and weapons when the panel slammed open and Sesshomaru walked in carrying his fur and some linen in a sopping bundle. It whimpered as I neared it and I slid the panel shut to keep the storm out. The bundle screamed as the thunder sounded again and I realized it was Rin wrapped up in that bundle.
"What happened?" I asked as I placed my arms underneath Rin with Sesshomaru's.
"Too loud…" I heard Rin sob from her position at Sesshomaru's chest. I tried to lift her out of Sesshomaru's arms just as more thunder sent her two little hands flying out of the fur and clinging to Sesshomaru's kimono for dear life.
"Rin, it's alright, your safe."
"I'm scared." The bundle whimpered and I took Rin from Sesshomaru who resisted a little, but handed her over. She was much heavier then I had thought, but I took her fur and all and set her on Sesshomaru's futon. The rain was just falling heavily around us now, no more thunder at least. Sesshomaru shook his long hair and droplets of water splattered everywhere including on me. He then proceeded to drape it over his shoulder and was about to ring it out when I grabbed his hands and stopped him.
"Oh no I don't think so! You do that outside! It's already wet enough in here. Oh and… here." I grabbed a sheet and handed it to him.
"Take those wet clothes off too…" Sesshomaru cocked an eyebrow. He then began to untie his kimono.
"NO! Not in here! Out there!" I shoved him out of the room and then attended to Rin who was now out of the jumble of materials and sitting in the middle of Sesshomaru's futon shaking and looking nervous. I gave her a hug and then got up.
"I'll be right back."
"No! Don't go!" She pleaded and grabbed my shirt. I smiled and tweaked her nose.
"I'll be right back I swear."
"Okay, just hurry." Rin whispered and I hurried to the other room and grabbed my smaller duffel and was about to come back when thunder shook the rooms and Rin let out a scream. I dashed into the room and was in front of her just as Sesshomaru came in faster then light and knocked me out of the way and was kneeling beside her.
His wet hair clung to his muscular shoulders and down his back. Small droplets of water covered his pale arms and the linen I had given him was barely fastened at his waist. It covered only what was necessary and if that, everything and nothing was left to the imagination. I moved to the two of them and Rin jumped into my arms sobbing. If Sesshomaru hadn't gone behind me and supported me I would have fallen. I rotated and sat on the edge of the futon, with Rin curled up in my lap.
"Sesshomaru, bring me that bag."
"Just do it will you? I don't need your mouth." I snapped. I myself was cold and wet and my hair was the main source. The fire helped a little but I was a fair distance from it. Sesshomaru moved and I half wished I hadn't asked him to. I really didn't want to see the linen drift any further down. He did as I asked and set the bag beside me. I rifled through it one handed for a minute and then pulled out a stuffed bunny rabbit, which I promptly gave to Rin.
"I was going to give it to you later, but now I think is better."
"Yeah, he's real soft isn't he?"
"Uh huh. Just like Lord Sesshomaru's fur."
"Do you want to give him a name?"
"Little bunny. That's perfect. I think he likes it."
"Really…" Rin let out a big yawn and nestled even closer to me, clutching the bunny to her tightly and fell asleep almost instantly. I was grateful that the storm decided it better to stay at a dull roar of rain and wind; hopefully Rin would sleep the rest of the night. Sesshomaru was still kneeling beside the two of us as I set Rin down and covered her. I then lifted his fur and the linens from the edge of the bed and lay them out on the floor to dry a bit, before going back and laying another blanket on Rin.
"Can't have her get a cold."
"She would survive."
"You… you don't know that." I whispered. Sesshomaru walked out to stand on the back porch facing a forest and the south. I followed him grabbing an extra blanket as I went. He stood just at the edge where the rain was pouring down and stood there. I could see him just a little from the small amount of light. I waited and watched him. The linen hung low on his waist revealing small slashes of pale skin from under his hair. I felt odd looking at him like this, it made me unusually comfortable. He was a little skinner without all of his clothing on. Wait! What was I saying!
"Why are you still standing there? Go back to sleep."
"It's soaking wet, just like you will be if you get any closer to the edge." I draped the blanket around his shoulders, just so I didn't have to look at his back anymore. I was sure that if I brushed the hair back I would be able to see the wound from where Inuyasha had run him through. I thought I had seen glimpses of it on his stomach earlier. He shrugged the blanket off.
"That isn't your concern. Just leave me alone."
"Well I would, but I guess you weren't listening so, my room has a leak and my bed is sopping wet."
"What a predicament." Sesshomaru replied with the slightest hint of sarcasm.
"It's nice to know you care. Come on let's go in." I took his arm and pulled. I was rightly surprised when he didn't flinch away. He followed me back inside and sat beside the fire silently. I went to my bag and grabbed a hairbrush and sat behind him.
"What are you doing?" He hissed, looking back at me. I rolled my eyes.
"Brushing your hair, if you don't it will be one big mess and all yuck."
"Oh just turn around! I bet you'll even like it!" I pushed his face around and then put the brush to his hair. I didn't move it three inches before it snagged and caught a knot. I pulled and it wouldn't budge.
"When was the last time you brushed this?"
"Never. Rin constantly plays with it, despite my scolding and I forbid… AGH!" He yelled as I pulled the brush with all of my might and kept my other hand clamped firmly over his mouth. I then hissed.
"Shhh! You'll wake up Rin!" I looked over at my shoulder, Rin had barely moved. My attention was drawn back to Sesshomaru as his lips moved under my hand and kissed my spread palm uncertainly. I pulled it back quickly and then began to brush again. It seemed like it took hours and maybe it did, but when I finished it was dry in some places and smoother then silk. I ran my fingers through it several times got a small shiver and noise out of Sesshomaru. I stopped and sat there. And looked at his back as he stoked the fire.
I once again felt very comfortable and relaxed sitting with him, and most certainly safe. I think I was beginning to understand what Rin felt, well in a sense. My heart wasn't pounding and my head didn't spin and I didn't want to scream or cry. For some reason unbeknownst to me I wrapped my arms around him and rested my head by the crook of his neck and stared into the fire and smelled the mixture of smoke and rain from the fire and Sesshomaru. He stiffened and then asked,
"What are you..." He stopped and one of his hands hovered over my arm and then softly rested it there his claws sending a shiver up my skin.
"You know you aren't as heartless as you look?"
"Is it getting warm in here?" I asked. I knew Sesshomaru's answer would be of the 'perhaps' kind, but could have sworn he actually said,
"Not at all." Oh well. I'd just sit this way for a bit… just a minute… no more… just a second…
"Ahem. Lin… remove yourself."
"Huh?" I opened my eyes and looked at the back of Sesshomaru's head. I let go and sat back a bit.
"How long was I asleep?"
"Hmm." I stroked Sesshomaru's hair again then began to braid it.
"Must you do that?"
"No, but you let Rin do it, so I will too. Besides it won't get quite so knotted this way."
"It is uncomfortable."
"You can always take it out later, it's not like it will curl or anything, the weight of it will prevent that from happening."
"That does not mean I approve." He admitted. I finished the braid and taking a hair tie from my own hair, which I had forgotten I had put up, tied off the braid.
"There all done." I let a yawn escape me and then standing up I whispered with a hand on his shoulder,
"Wake me up later Sesshomaru, and get some rest too."
"Hmm." He replied.
"Just get some sleep Sir Fluff n' Tough." I pushed his head teasingly and I left him, joining Rin, where I promptly fell asleep to the crackling of the fire.
So you all still know how to submit a reveiw I know I'm very confused with the rest of right now but I would very much appreciate a review!