"Inuyasha?" Kagome said, her voice low and sweet. "Are…are you sure you want to do this?"
He blushed boyishly, not meeting her eyes. "Of course," he answered. "I…I love you, Kagome. I want to be with you."
She took his hands in hers, drawing him closer. "You don't have to be shy," she whispered. "We love each other, Inuyasha. Everything will be all right."
Kagome kept a firm hold on his wrists as she pulled him down next to her on the bed. He swallowed hard, afraid to touch her, afraid he'd do something wrong, something bad. He seriously didn't want to mess this up.
"Look at me," she whispered, stroking back his hair. Inuyasha seemed strangely preoccupied with her red school tie, never raising his eyes to hers, breathing heavily.
"I can't do this," he muttered. Tearing his eyes away from her chest, Inuyasha looked over his shoulder and scowled.
"Cut, cut, CUT!"
"Oh bloody hell," Kagome snapped, dropping back on the bed.
Miroku stormed over to the couple, waving the script in his hand. "That's the third take you've screwed up," he bawled angrily. "How the FUCK am I supposed to stay on budget when you keep blowing the sex scene?"
Folding his arms over his chest, Inuyasha glowered at his director. "I'm not comfortable," he hissed, his eyes narrowing with dislike.
Sighing, Miroku pulled off his ball cap and wiped his forehead. Actors could be so difficult, even if it was just a low-budget porn movie. Strangling a smile and the urge to strangle his star attraction, Miroku slung his arm over Inuyasha's shoulder.
"Listen," he said quietly. "I know this isn't what we're used to doing, okay? I was a lot happier just doing manga and anime too. But times are difficult, Inuyasha. We've got to give the fans what they want."
"Yeah, spare me the pep talk," Inuyasha growled. "If I ever get my hands on that Takahashi woman for selling our contracts to that low-life tentacle sucking scum bag…"
Glancing nervously over his shoulder, Miroku gave Inuyasha's arm a quick shake. "I don't like working for Naraku either, but it's better than getting cast into some cheap yaoi-boy rag, isn't it? At least we're all still working with each other and getting paid. Now, how about it? Ready to work?"
He knew when he was beat. The embarrassment of having to perform sexually in front of cameras was nothing compared to knowing that Naraku was enjoying every minute of his humiliation. But…a contract was a contract.
"I don't see why you got to be the director," he grumbled.
Waving his hand, Miroku smiled, radiating saintly good humor. "My superior organizational skills, my intellect. My gift for selecting talent…"
"Oh, bullshit! Every woman on this movie set got here by way of your bed!"
"I didn't!" a young woman's voice rang out.
Miroku lifted an eyebrow and grinned at his assistant. "And that's why you're fetching coffee for me instead of displaying that lovely body on the screen, Sango. If you'd like a proper…private…audition, I can certainly arrange…"
Sango spun around and stalked away from him. "I'd rather fluff Jaken," she snarled angrily.
"At least he's working," Miroku shot back. "He's got a cult following, you know. They call that little guy the green Ron Jeremy of hentai anime. I wish I had half the stamina of that toad."
"Could we just get back to work?" Kagome called out, still lying on the bed and looking bored. "I'm going to forget all my lines!"
"Doesn't matter," Inuyasha snarled, giving the girl a dirty look. "Don't you know they're gonna dub your voice in later anyway?"
Kagome sat up, looking furious. "They are? Nobody told me that! Who's doing the dub, I have a right to know, Miroku."
Miroku ignored his peeved starlet and clapped his hands for attention. "Okay, people, we've still got a movie to make and the boss doesn't like it when we go over budget. Let's take it from the next scene. Kagome, get back into position. Inuyasha, time to shed the damn hakama and give the people what they're paying for, got it?"
"Yeah, yeah. I got it."
Miroku grabbed his arm hard before letting him get back to his job. "And for fuck's sake," he hissed so that only Inuyasha could hear him. "At least try to be more interested in what's under her fuku rather than the damn fuku itself. You two have all the sexual chemistry of ten year-old virgin cousins playing doctor!"
Inuyasha shoved Miroku away with a muttered curse, stripping off his clothing as he stalked back to the bed. How was he expected to perform in front of an audience? Sure, things had been a little tight since the anime series had been cancelled, but he'd never expected Takahashi to sell them out like this.
He sighed, wishing that he'd listened to that Saotome kid when Ranma had tried to warn him about the true nature of the business. Damn fangirls. It wasn't enough that they wrote stupid stories dripping with fluffy romance and uninspired sex, now he had to act out their horny fantasies too?
"Okay," he heard Miroku call out. "We're ready in three. Lights, camera…ACTION!"
He dropped his pants and climbed back into bed, telling himself that this would all be over soon, he'd have his paycheck and he could forget about…
Kagome snickered, covering her mouth with her hand and shaking the bed with suppressed giggles. "I don't think he's ready for action yet, Miroku!"
"It's not my fault," Inuyasha snapped, covering his limp cock with his hands and flushing even darker. Humiliation didn't begin to cover this…Naraku was going to pay blood for putting him in this position.
"What's the matter?" Kagome drawled, leaning back on her elbow. "Little Tessaiga catch a chill?"
"Sweet Buddha on a stick," Miroku groaned and covered his face with his hands, heartily wishing that a wind tunnel would open in one of them and suck him away from this joke that become his life. Raising his head, he wearily searched the assembled staff with his eyes.
"Would someone please get in there and fluff Inuyasha? We're wasting money just sitting here."
"I'll do it," a happy voice rang out.
"Over my dead body!" Inuyasha shouted as a slender young man raised his hand and waved at him. "You keep that son of a bitch away from me, Miroku!"
"Sit down, Jakotsu," Miroku said, his voice heavy with irritation. "It's not gonna happen. Kagura, take care of it."
"Sure," the wind demon said, smiling as she made her way across the room. Inuyasha refused to look at her, scowling at the ceiling as if he wished it would cave in and crush him. No such luck, instead Kagura knelt in front of the bed and spread his thighs apart.
"Just relax, dear," she said, caressing him lightly. She spit in her palm and smiled. "I'm very good at what I do."
"Yeah," he answered, still not looking at her. "I've heard that the wind blows in all kinds of ways and I …ah!"
Inuyasha's eyes crossed a little and he leaned back heavily on his hands as Kagura's head bobbed rhythmically in his lap. Maybe this wasn't such a bad job after all; it definitely had its perks.
"Uh, okay," Miroku said, blushing a bit himself and looking down at the script. "I think if we cut out that vibrator scene from the second act, we'll be back on schedule. Now, let's just take a look at the board and…"
"Miroku," a cold voice caught his attention like a bucket of ice water poured down his back.
"Hey, Naraku," he said, feigning pleasure at seeing his producer and boss appear unexpectedly on the set. "It's great you could make it down, I had heard you were in Toronto this week."
Naraku raised an eyebrow, fully aware that he was the last person that Miroku would be happy to see. "The meetings with VIZ were cancelled," he said lightly, his crimson eyes roving over the set. "I came to see how my investment was faring. On schedule, I hope?"
"Ahead of schedule," Miroku said heartily, cursing the day that he ever thought to enter a contract with Takahashi in the first place. "Under budget too, things couldn't be going better. In fact, we were just getting ready to shoot the next scene."
"So I see."
Miroku cleared his throat and turned back to business. Now was not the time to look unprofessional. Everyone had their job to do, his was to make sure this damn movie got finished. He liked working steadily, he did not want to find himself resorting to low-rent doushinji to pay the bills. Not again.
"Kagura, are you almost done?" he called out, flipping nervously through the script.
"Coooommingg," she answered, her voice oddly muffled.
"Better not be," he muttered, crossing the fingers of his right hand. When in doubt, pray for luck, he advised himself.
Naraku surveyed the set critically. He'd invested a significant amount of capital in this project, it would never do to have it fail. All that money on market research, focus groups and consultants had to pay off somewhere. As beloved as Kagome and Inuyasha were as anime stars, they were not necessarily the most popular pairing of their fandom.
"Miroku," he said coolly, catching the director's arm in a firm grasp. "I'm afraid there has been a last minute revision to your script. I've had some research done and I'm afraid that I must insist on a casting change."
"A what?" Kagome squeaked. "Who are you bringing in? Oh god, tell me it's not Kouga. He's the worst, he drools when he…"
"How would you know?" Inuyasha asked suspiciously, watching Kagura's hips wiggle as she sauntered away from a job well done. Call me, he mouthed when she glanced back at him with a saucy wink.
Kagome blushed and for the first time looked ill at ease. "Let's just say that after the last New Year's party, I know a lot of things about Kouga that I wish I didn't."
He snorted. "Serves you right." Then he scowled. Kouga had better not replace him, he was going to scream breach of contract if it was true.
Naraku smiled ominously. "No, not the wolf demon. If I want this project to be successful and profitable, I had to make certain concessions. I think you'll agree that my decision is wise. My lord, if you please…"
A tall, striking creature wearing nothing but a pair of skin-tight black leather pants entered the room. His silvery hair flowed over his shoulders like a glistening waterfall, and every eye in the room, male or female, was drawn to this living embodiment of both androgynous beauty and masculine sexuality.
"Oh fuck no," Inuyasha groaned, covering his eyes in despair and grieving for the loss of what had been a magnificent hard on. He was literally wilting at the idea of being replaced by his damn brother yet again.
"Oh fuck yes!" Kagome squealed, her eyes greedily devouring Sesshomaru as he glided across the room. Looking down at the girl with a faint smile, he gestured at the bed.
Kagome blinked, confused. "What?"
"Move. You're in the way." When Kagome continued to stare up at him with a vapid expression, he reached down, grabbed the edge of the sheet and neatly flipped the girl to the floor.
Sesshomaru settled comfortably on the bed, crossing his leather clad legs and giving Inuyasha a distinctly seductive glower. "Well, little brother? Are you going to continue with your complaints about this arrangement?"
Inuyasha's mouth had dropped open, staring in disbelief as Sesshomaru slowly trailed one hand down his chiseled chest and unfastened the first button on his leather jeans. He swallowed hard, he blushed boyishly, and then he gave his older brother a sly grin.
Sango elbowed Miroku hard in the ribs, grinning up at him with undisguised delight. "Hell, I'd pay to see this! We're definitely going to make money with this."
He nodded, rubbing the back of his neck and decided he would never again doubt Naraku's business instincts. The man was a sheer, twisted genius. "Make sure props has plenty of Astroglide on hand," he muttered to Sango. This could be a very long shoot…in more ways than one.
"Okay, people, let's take it from the top. Lights, camera…ACTION!"