AN: Dear Readers, just want to drop everyone a note that this story was written way- way back in 2005- and I am trying as a writer here to finish up all the lingering fan-fiction's I've accumulated over the years. You can imagine that since its been so many years, I've sort of forgot the original idea for this. So here is the rewrite...

This story is a different take on Sesshoumaru's and Rin's relationship. Where the both of them really don't get along.. haha, at least in the beginning. So without further ado please enjoy. :)

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Burrowing deeper into the thin pallet the young woman known simply as Rin groaned as the weak spring sun touched her eyelids. She rolled over and sat up, soaking the weak sun greedily into her twenty one year old body. Naraku was still alive, his numerous reincarnations defiling the soil of Japan. And their were 2 Shikon Jewel shards left ( or at least this is what Jaken told her). Hidden so well, that not even the reincarnation of the Priestess- Kagome could find them.

How long had they been wandering? It seemed like a lifetime, she turned slowly to see that Jaken- the kappa youkai was already bustling about. Small green hands deftly lighting a fire in the tiny clearing. With effort she rose- silently departing the clearing for the nearby hill in search of firewood. As Rin walked in her tattered kimono, she noted the buds on the trees were beginning to sprout.

A soft smile touched her pink lips as she finished gathering the firewood. Lashing it together with one of her tattered ribbons and throwing it over her shoulder. For a brief moment her head spun- her knees trembling beneath her. Before she froze.

"Why are you taking so long with the firewood?" the inu-youkai known simply as Sesshomaru appeared like some specter out of the shafts of spring sunlight filtering through the trees.

Rin would have been stupid to deny that time had only made him more stunningly handsome. In the years of wandering Sesshoumaru had discarded his default armor and white garments for the plain clothing of villagers. His hair had grown long- the silvery tresses shining like spun silver in the light. Pooling over powerful shoulders and cascading past his hips. Handsome chiseled features, high cheekbones and carnal lips reminiscent of the very gods themselves.

Yes indeed if only he had the personality to match.

Rin bit back a particularly nasty retort "I was coming back Sesshomaru-sama. Jaken knows I only just left" she replied sharply trying to keep the acid from her tone.

A single silvery brow quirked "Is that so- I recall that you slept far beyond the dawn's light" oh that voice was deep and dark. Like sin itself

"So I did- but Jaken did the same" she snapped striding past him with the bundle of firewood.

Like lightening a powerful hand whipped out and grabbed her bony arm stopping her. That scent of spice and amber briefly filled her nostrils before she turned to stare at him evenly.

"Is there anything else Sesshoumaru- sama?" she asked through clenched teeth. There was something about him today that really put her on edge. Maybe because she was still horribly chilly and sick to death of all the cold. Of a hard winter that would not release its grip- of their situation. Of the notion that she hadn't seen a decent bed in over a year and in reality the hopelessness of her very life.

She was a spinster- a single women with no family, no husband and no one else. Other then Sesshoumaru, Jaken and the two headed beast Ah-un. With the political climate as it was with Naraku trying to gain power in the Imperial City itself there wasn't anything that she could do. Other then- go find a town and sell her body.

"I need you to pack quickly we are going to the capital" he said after a long moment before releasing his grip and passing her.

000

By the time Rin had packed, she realized with shock that Sesshomaru was preparing the red cloud for their transportation.

She looked down to the green skinned kappa with wide eyes "Isn't this dangerous?"

Jaken cast his yellowy eyes upward "Not it isn't girl- we are going to the capital. Since Naraku has come into some power the youkai outnumber people 3 to 1. No one will even blink when we touch down in the street"

Rin worried her lower lip watching as Ah- un stepped up onto the huge cloud. Sesshoumaru followed, his hair whipping around him- before he turned

"Are the both of you coming?"

0000

Rin frail from held up well on their ride to the Capital, having long sat down and dozed against Ah-un's scaly leg. Sesshoumaru was the only one to remain standing for Jaken eventually slept as the moon rose high in the night sky. At this height the wind was brisk and Rin tugged the warmth of Sesshomaru's fur closer to her body.

Thank great Amaterasu- kami- sama that Sesshoumaru did not get rid of his old clothing. She may have froze to death with the high wind if not for this heavenly fur that smelt of him. Of spice, amber and a touch of something like musk. She buried her face in the softness inhaling deeply- wondering if she would have still been alive if she had never crossed paths with Sesshoumaru- sama, Lord of the Western Lands...

0

Sesshomaru turned just as he sensed Rin fall into a deep slumber, gazing upon her thin face and tattered kimono. The guilt was nearly overwhelming but it couldn't be helped- since they were on the run. Well Rin did not know- but Jaken did. Now it was safe to return to civilization- Naraku was suitably distracted. One pureblood- inu-youkai with the power of Tokijin was now beneath his concern and Sesshomaru quite liked it that way.

Not only that he had to contend with the brunt of her anger daily- however her anger. The change in her floral musky scent had the opposite affect of what she no doubt intended. Sesshomaru found himself more and more attracted to the unlikely member of his troupe. Though he cared for Rin- he did not possess a fatherly instinct for the mortal girl. Actually his saving her life with Tenseiga had been merely a whim, nothing more. Over the years he had grown used to her.

If anything it was Jaken who could be called her 'father'. He doted upon the mortal girl in the way that only a youkai could. A mortals whose life was as frail and delicate as a flower.

"Jaken I know you are awake. Do not look at me like that" Sesshomaru said gently so as not to wake the sleeping young woman.

"Milord- I believe that Rin is quite ill. I have been trying to keep the fever raging through her down for days now. She is going to need proper care and soon"

"That is fine- we will touch down in front of Oka-donno's clinic"

0000

It was nearly 2 in the morning when they arrived in the lavish and prosperous capital of Edo. Oka Sadaharu's- a youkai himself was standing outside his clinic with a lantern lit in the darkened empty street. Oka's clinic was in one of the most exclusive parts of Edo- where only the most privileged and pure bloodlines lived. At least those outside the palace...

Across from the clinic was a vast inn- exclusively for youkai, spirits, oni, kami's and their entourages. Which boasted its own onsen and gardens that rivaled the Imperial Gardens of the Palace itself.

"Ah good evening Sesshomaru-sama. I am glad to see you are well" Oka bowed deeply as the cloud drew nearer. He was a elderly looking man- wrinkled with kind blue eyes and a head of thick salt and pepper hair. He wore the simple garments of a doctor- no one except only the most sensitive of humans- would notice the tiny pointed horns on his head.

Sesshomaru felt the cloud touching the graveled street and picking up the now unconscious Rin, stepped down. He bowed slightly

"Good evening Oka-donno, I apologize but this young woman needs your help right away"

Oka looked at the pale shiny face of Rin in Sesshoumaru's arms, her panting breaths punctuating the silence between them "Very well- please come inside"

0000 2 days later 000

"How long has Jaken been here?" Sesshomaru asked as he stepped into Rin's sick room. The girl lay still as death beneath the thick covers of the futon, a compress on her forehead. Beside her sprawled on the floor was none other then Jaken- wearing the same clothes from two days previous.

"Since you came to the clinic Sesshoumaru-sama. I apologize from keeping you away from your ward but you did say you needed rooms to be squared off at the inn ….and then came the subject of payment"

Sesshomaru nearly sighed "Yes I apologize it took longer then I surmised to gather the necessary funds"

"That is alright" the doctor nodded sagely "if you would like you may say a while and call down the hall should you need anything"

He nodded and just as Oka was leaving he turned "You nearly worked that girl to death Sesshomaru- sama. It will take her some months to recover her full strength. Plenty of palatable meals and rest." With that- the doctor left

As soon the door was shut Sesshomaru crossed the room to kneel down beside Rin. There was still no color on her cheeks, but at least her fever had gone down. Oka was right of course- the hard lifestyle they had been forced into had not been kind to the mortal girl. As a youkai it wasn't bad- Sesshomaru was rarely hungry nor tired. But Rin with the insidious cold and skimpy meals...

At least now he could hide the Shard in plain sight. Silently he removed something from the inner pocket of his sleeve. In a small glass vial- pasted with powerful Shinto spells was none other then 1 of the final 2 Shikon Shards. How he had come by this- well that was for another day.

Here they had protection- the inn was full of so much magic that it would completely mask the presence of the Shard. From all- including Naraku's nine incarnations.

The Lord of the Western lands noted that the large scaled creature that was Ah-un sat in the far corner sleeping. Apparently those of his unlikely group had come to care for the girl. Deftly he threaded the vial around the chain he had purchased the day before, and hooked it around her slender neck. The jewel gave a quick glow and Rin sighed softly. The color rapidly returning to her cheeks- satisfied Sesshomaru folded his arms across his chest and went to sleep.