A Day in the Life of Naraku
The following is a very, erm, messed up reenactment of the manga series Inu-Yasha's 23rd volume, in which Rin was kidnapped by Naraku. Certain liberties were taken with the characters' personalities…And there is no way in hell this actually occurred in the storyline, but that's what parodies are for, right?
BZzzzZzzz….. Burzlllll…. Bizzz…..bzzzllllle….
Sesshoumaru's face twisted into a rare grimace. But immediately his marbiline features settled into their indifferent norm, as he cast a look about the area.
Buuuuuurrrrzzzz…. lll…. Bzzzz….
What in the name of the seven hells is that buzzing? the demon thought furiously. Turning his head askance, Sesshoumaru allowed one pointed ear to catch upon the odd sound.
Behind him, a breeze capered through the glade, washing over the viridian trees with a wave of conspiring whispers. The scent of rain was heavy in the air: I'll have to fetch Jaken and Rin soon, Sesshoumaru thought, almost irrelevantly. And into the noon continued the rise and fall of that strange buzzing. For the life of him, Sesshoumaru could not comprehend what it was. It's been following my wake all afternoon, he mused. Does it believe it can overtake one such as I, the Lord Sesshoumaru? Before long, Sesshoumaru could stand it no more. He turned and faced the stretch behind him.
Low in the sky floated a dark blotch, which bobbed and weaved drunkenly through the air. A heavy sack, twice the size of the flier at least, swung from the creature's legs. Now, why is that thing carrying such a large sack? he mused. It must be ten times too heavy for that puny cretin, at least. With the wind casting its scent toward him, Sesshoumaru identified the carrier. Naraku's scent: it must be one of his saimyosho spies. As he thought so, the striped wasp wobbled down through the air toward him. Sesshoumaru observed with amusement that the bulge-eyed insect was wheezing as it plopped to the ground.With a last gasp, the bee rolled over, and died of exhaustion. Its prickly legs twitched convulsively, and the sack flopped down with a heavy thudd.
Sesshoumaru paused, staring at the dead saimyosho's sack. Atop it was clipped a rather pristine note, tied with a bow. It's from Naraku but, I mustn't be deceived by cute appearances. The demon gazed on warily, almost expecting it to catch fire. Then, he took a quiet stride toward the sack, and opened the letter with a slide of his foreclaw.
Dear Sesshoumaru, Brother of Inu-Yasha:
I have in my possession one whom I know you value dearly, my dear Sesshoumaru. A human girl, who goes by the name of Rin, if I am not mistaken. She lies beneath my power within my fortress, and with my command, will be destroyed in any way I imagine. If you wish to see your dear little girl once more, you must approach my castle, unarmed. I shall disclose then the conditions under which you must agree for Rin to be returned to you.
I have also included a sack of cupcakes, which I have baked myself. They are peach-flavored.
"Damn that insidious creature!" he hissed, eyes flickering to a deep red. "What a conniving demon… Trying to lure one such as I with baked goods. How could he have known I like peaches?" But even worse… does he know what happens to me… when I eat peaches? Is he threatening me with these cursed baked goods of peachiness? A gust of anxiety flew through his mind. How could he have known? As though he were being spied on that very moment, Sesshoumaru glared about him. But once more he composed himself, sliding a single hand along the back of his train of hair.
"Very well, Naraku," he called arrogantly to the shadows. "I shall visit your fortress, and claim what is mine." And slay you for this…. indignity he added within his mind.
"L-Lord Sesshoumaruuuu!" cut a voice through the silence. Sesshoumaru half-turned to meet a breathless Jaken, who stumbled over his robes toward his master.
"Pl-pleasssse…. forgive me, m'lord," the toady demon gasped, throwing himself before Sesshoumaru's feet. "I have failed youuu… Rin was… was…"
"Captured?" Sesshoumaru said quietly, turning away. He smirked to himself at the stunned silence from Jaken. "But m'lord… How could you have known… Twas leagues away where I was watching her…"
"It matters not, Jaken," interrupted Sesshoumaru, a hint of impatience edging his sibilant voice. "I already have been informed." The demon gestured toward the dead saimyosho and the opened letter. Jaken batted his lamp-like eyes in curiosity, and shambled to his feet. Prodding the sack with the edge of his staff, the vassal turned back to his lord.
"And what of this, m'lord?" he asked, cautiously opening the edge of the sack. Involuntarily Sesshoumaru bristled, as a cupcake rolled out.
"Why, it's merely a…a….," Jaken murmured, turning it about in his hand.
"It's called a cupcake," Sesshoumaru growled. "Naraku baked them."
Jaken blinked, tasted the cupcake. "Naraku, the one who tried to control my Lord?... They aren't poisoned, are they?" he asked, only after tasting it. "Mmmm, why, it reminds me of peaches…"
Sesshoumaru's mouth watered for the deliciously sweet, peachy scent. But quickly he shook his head, pressing a finger to his temple. No! I shall not be controlled by the peaches of my enemy! he thought, glaring the cupcakes down.
"Come, Jaken," he hissed, turning the face the forest. Jaken fell in behind him. "Naraku shall pay for this insult… oh, and yes, for capturing Lin too," he added as an afterthought, waving his hand dismissively.
For a while, the only sound was that of Sesshoumaru's sifting hair as he strode into the wind, and Jaken's pattering feet.
"Umm…. Her name's Rin… m'lord."
Naraku rested his face in one palm, and stared gloomily out into the gathering darkness. Outside, the castle's barrier shifted and shimmered, a translucent veil like oil over glass. No sound came from the envy-green treetops. No wind ruffled through the rafters, singing a mournful song. It would have been a perfectly evil and quiet atmosphere, the one Naraku relished to bask in like the glow of some warm dark lamp. But, sadly it was broken by the chiming voice of a little girl.
"Mmm… What's this?"
Naraku shuddered at the sudden sound of Rin's voice. He ignored the child, turning his pallid face to the scenery beyond. Rin, used to being disregarded by uppity demons, helped herself to her curiosity. Leaping up, she pulled down a great fluffy white robe.
"It's so warm and furry!" she cooed, bundling up Naraku's baboon cloak in her arms. Hearing the phrase "warm and furry" drew a sudden glance from Naraku.
"Just what do you think you are doing?" he drawled, raising a thin eyebrow. Rin looked from the bundle of fur in her arms to Naraku, and back.
"Do you wear this?" she asked loudly, with a smile. "Like this?" Without waiting for an answer, Rin threw it over her head. Slipping the baboon mask over her face, she ran forward.
"I'm the ghost of a BABOOOOOOOON!" she squealed, tripping over the fur. Naraku twitched. Just what have I done, bringing this pest to my castle? She's ruining the evil atmosphere! Behind him, Kagura hid her sneer with her fan.
"Aww, how cute. Don't you wish we had a little girl like that around here, Naraku?"
Kanna looked up from her soulless gazing. Turning black eyes to her sister, the girl scowled.
"Well, one that had emotions, anyway," added Kagura huffily.
Still stumbling over the fur cloak much too big for her, Rin dashed into the hall. Her pattering feet faded into the shadows.
"Kohaku, follow the child," Naraku growled. "Make sure she doesn't break... anything."
Silently Kohaku rose from his "angsting corner" and strode down the hall. But before he could get very far, the silence was rent with a Krkllclatter!
"Sooooooorrrrrrrrrryyyy!" cheerfully called Rin's voice. Naraku leapt to his feet. Kagura was shocked to see that he was trembling.
"No… she couldn't have broken it…. Not my…"
"Your what?" snapped Kagura.
"My precious… BEE-HIVE SCULPTURE!"
And with that, the demon sprinted into the darkness.
"…..Oh," murmured Kagura. "That."
"Kagura," began Naraku in a sincere tone, as he settled against the wall. "Do you think I'm a… well-rounded person?"
Fanning herself, Kagura shot him a bewildered look.
"What, exactly, do you mean by that?" she returned, lurid pink eyes glancing him up and down. Naraku did not answer at once, but wistfully sighed, covering his face with one hand.
"It's just… don't you think… there's more to life, outside this castle?" he asked, gesturing around the gloomy, purple-cast interior. "Haven't you ever wanted to just go out, and see the world? Meet new people? Try new things?"
Seriously disturbed by her master's change in attitude, Kagura took a step backward. Her kimono ruffled against the floor-planks, as she bitterly thought, "I would go out and see the world, you monster, if you actually let me roam freely for once. When his spawn/servant/slave did not answer, Naraku went on.
"I…I think I have allowed this whole Shikon Jewel mess to cloud my perception, dear Kagura. It has made me neglect the finer things in life," he concluded. Kagura raised an eyebrow.
"Finer things? Like what?"
Naraku shook his head, a sad, condescending smile on his face.
"My dear Kagura, of course you would be ignorant of such things. I speak of the arts, of the greatest pursuits in life. The dance, Kagura, the dance! The realm of literature, poetry. Sculpture, fine art. Orchestra, theatre. Philosophy. All of these things, I have ignored. Now, I would like to broaden my horizons, make myself a… culturally diverse person. Do you see?"
Ohhhh yes, Naraku. I see. I see you've gone insane. About fucking time, thought Kagura furiously. His eyes glazed with the beauty of his vision, Naraku stared past her, as though at Heaven.
"Now is the time for me to take wing, to see what the world has to offer me. Now, I must become a better person, and leave this sheltered, brooding life. I ask you to assist me in this journey, dear Kagura." He extended a hand.
Kagura took a step back. "Umm, Naraku, are you sure about this? Have you been feeling, erm… well? You have been taking your medicine like the doctor told you, right?"
"Say you'll join me or Kanna will suck your soul," ordered Naraku flatly. Behind Kagura, the little white-haired girl seemed to materialize.
"Whose soul do you want me to suck?" asked Kanna quietly. Her mirror glinted milkily in the dim light. Kagura glanced from the mirror to Naraku, from Naraku to the mirror.
"Alright, alright! Sheesh, I'll help you in your journey, or whatever."
"Excellent!" cried Naraku, clapping his hands and springing to his feet. "Now, Kagura, I was hoping you could recite these Shakespeare lines with me…."
Silence. Then, a wail of grief, and the sound of Rin skipping to the second floor. Quietly, and very cautiously, Kagura crept down the hall after Naraku.
Before long, she came upon him. The demon was bowed over the shattered pieces of a large sculpture, which looked as though it was once crafted in the image of the Nest of the Hell Wasps. Little marble saimyosho were scattered about.
"… Umm, Naraku, are you… okay?" whispered Kagura, more out of fear of his wrath than out of compassion. His face turned from her, Naraku let out a tremulous sigh.
"I worked so hard, my dear," he murmured. "A work of art, that I chipped at for four days on end. Now, shattered by the follies of a child." He cradled the broken head of a saimyosho in his hands, and a sob escaped him. Though thoroughly disturbed by her master's unsound mind, Kagura felt the tiniest ripple of pity wash within her.
"Well, Naraku… It's okay, alright? You can make another sculpture, can't you?" she said, crouching down beside him. Naraku gave a harsh chuckle.
"Never could I recreate such a fine piece: these hands could never shape such an exquisite beehive again!" But glancing down at the lumpy fragments of beehive, Kagura could hardly have called it exquisite to begin with.
"Well, you know, Naraku," Kagura replied, reluctantly patting him on the back, "I don't think art is your, er, calling, after all. No, you were meant to be a… a…"
"Yes? Yes?" Naraku turned toward her, slitted eyes widened. Holding her fan before her face, his servant's eyes shifted.
"Uh, I meant that you make a better um…a-h-hhh…" She waved her hand vaguely in the air.
"You mean I am meant to be a… a…" her master prodded on.
"Err, what I meant to say is…"
"I think I understand now, my dear Kagura," cut in Naraku with a decisive tone. He stood up, tilted his face to the ceiling.
"Yes. You're right. I'm not meant to be an artist. Though I have proved my merits, I see that such a life is not for me to lead. No, I must pursue a different passion."
Blinking, Kagura stared up at him expectantly.
"And.. what passion would that be?"
Smirking, Naraku tossed his matt of wavy black hair with a flourish.
"Why, my Kagura, I must become a chef."
Stunned silence. Distantly from above came a squeal from Rin, and the sound of Kohaku's voice pleading for her to stop running. Kagura let her fan fall away.
"A chef," she uttered in disbelief.
"Yes. A chef."
Backing away from him, the wind witch's eyes grew wide.
"You're serious about this?"
Naraku frowned, dusted off his purple robes. Countenance taut with dissatisfaction, he swept aside the beehive fragments with his sandal.
"But of course. It's not that much of stretch—I've dabbled a bit in cooking already, baked a few trifles here and there. Hasn't Kanna told you about my peach cupcakes? They're quite yummy, if I do say so myself."
Without being ordered, Kanna stepped out of the shadows with a broom. Idly she swept the fragments aside, saying in her faint, disquieting voice:
"Yes. Yes, his cupcakes are quite yummy."
"That's right. Good girl, Kanna," said Naraku smugly. Arrgh, he always favors that creepy, kiss-up little girl, thought Kagura, face twisting into a frown. While I have to put up with his weird obsessions. Well-rounded person, my ass!
"Now, wouldn't you like to try some of my cupcakes, Kagura?" he rounded on her with a smile. Both Kanna and he stared expectantly. Kagura had no choice.
"Sure, yeah, I'd love to try your cupcakes," she grumbled with false cheer. Naraku strode briskly past her, towards the castle's kitchen. Once more from above they heard the happy screams of a child, accompanied by what sounded like Kohaku being bashed over the head. Naraku hissed with frustration, once more becoming his cold self.
"Kanna, make sure that idiotic girl doesn't get blood on my floors. That worthless Kohaku, can't even control a child. I'd kill him off, if he weren't such a useful shield against that sentimental demon-slayer girl." As Kanna obediently ascended the stairs, Kagura turned to Naraku with a puzzled frown.
"Naraku, I've been meaning to ask… Why did you bring that girl here in the first place? Are you trying to lure Sesshoumaru here?" She smiled wickedly at the thought. "Going to mesh him in one of your mastermind plans?"
"Yes, Kagura. It is all part of my plan, you see," he drawled, a cold smile twisting his features. "Sesshoumaru will have to assist me, if he ever wants to see his precious little girl again."
"Really? Assist you with what? Killing Inu-yasha? Gathering Shikon Shards?" Kagura went on excitedly.
"Oh, no, something better, and less clichéd!" said Naraku with a laugh. "Why, I shall force him to help me with… my interior decorating!" Laughing triumphantly, Naraku entered the kitchen, followed by the most miserable and confused wind witch to ever serve her master.
Disclaimer: I do not own Naraku, Kanna, Kagura, or any other spawn-eriffic characters. They belong to Rumiko Takahashi.
To be Continued
In the next chapter(s), Kanna succumbs to the personality reversal of doom, while Kagura tries saké for the first time, Naraku takes cooking lessons from a very certain someone, and Sesshoumaru's dark, peach-related secret is revealed, among other nonsense.