Disclaimer: I do not own Inuyasha. Short and sweet.

A/N. Bleargh, I'm a loser, eh? I make new stories when I haven't even finished my other ones. -smacks self- Argh, is writer's block a good excuse? xD

He didn't love her.

Or that's what he told her, for the sake of his pride.

Or maybe he was as foolish as his demon father was?

He didn't love her.

He couldn't possibly love a human maiden. A dead one, for that matter.

"I don't love you," he stated simply,his cold, amber orbs gazing blankly at the young priestess before him. Her soul collectors glided defensively around her, as if trying to protect her from the unbearable pain that would follow. Their shiny scales sparkled along with the small, glowing orbs of the dead maidens' souls, offering an illuminating, content air. Kikyo's chocolate eyes slightly widened in bewilderment, twisting her expression into the one she wore when Naraku struck her down and she plunged into the miasma, her thoughts filled with despair that her carelessness had led to her desmise, her thoughts filled with sadness that her death awaited, her thoughts filled with dismay that no one had come to save her. It was as if she accepted things without objection or resistance.

"S-Sesshomaru...?" Kikyo stammered in petrified shock, her skin becoming more pale than it had ever been.

"I don't love you," he repeated once more. He had to turn away so he couldn't feel the guilt inside him build up as the depths of Kikyo's hazel eyes grew dull and empty.

She always seemed so sad, so empty, so lifeless, so dismayed. She could never have the future she wanted, never walk the path she wished to, never be with the man she loved. She was forced to wear a blank mask, forced to never laugh, forced to never smile, forced to never show any signs of emotion. She was cursed. She was doomed.

Kikyo always had a soft spot for children though. When she met Rin, she and the bubbly, cheerful girl developed a close bond, one that seemed to be a motherly and daughterly relationship.

Kikyo opened her heart to Sesshomaru as she did with Inuyasha and poured out her sadness to him. For her bravery, for her will, for her determination, Sesshomaru respected her. Then he grew to love her...or so he believed.

He had foolishly confessed his feelings for her one day. Kikyo accepted them, of course, yet she told him that she still had the mission she died to complete - protect the Sacred Jewel - and to avenge herself and Inuyasha by killing Naraku. She promised that she would return to him when she defeated Naraku. And he vowed that he would be there for her.

Now that he thought about it, he probably didn't love her. Love was a foolish human emotion. What he expressed to her, what he felt for her...was merely caused out of pity.

Yes, that was it. Pity.

"But...you..." a hopeless stammer rose from her throat as she tried to choke back her tears.

His eyes flickered to her before he turned away once more. "Those times I embraced you...those times I said I loved you...It was all a mistake. Do not dwell on the past, on what was simply a mistake."

Her sorrowful frown grew deeper with despair, tears welling in her hazel eyes as his words stabbed into her heart. She reached out and grabbed his hand, feeling the familiarity of his smooth, warm skin. "Sesshomaru...-"

What happened next was unexpected and surprised them both, even Sesshomaru himself.

He jerked his hand out of hers and struck her.

The force of his slap sent her colliding onto the ground. Fingering the bruise on her once flawless cheek, Kikyo didn't bother to try to force back the tears. She wept bitterly but silently, staring up at Sesshomaru with despair.

"Do not touch me as you would before," he spoke coldly. "You do not have that privilege anymore. I was a fool to allow you to have it. I told you, it was all a mistake. Do not dwell on the past, on what was simply a mistake." A quiet, choked sob arose from Kikyo's throat as she lowered her eyes to the ground, her long bangs covering her eyes. "Besides..." he continued. "You love Inuyasha."

And with that, he spun around gracefully and walked away.

Distant, faint noises could be heard through the rampage of flaring emotions that flooded throughout her mind. Rain. The sky, respecting her thoughts of pain and sorrow, shed its pure tears. Rain...

Wiping the long, thin stream of tears that cascaded down her pale cheek, Kikyo watched silently as the tiny drops of salty water created small ripples that parted throughout the cerulean lake, but even through massive amount of ripples that blurred the once calm surface of the water, she could see the reflection of a lonely, hurt spirit. Her reflection.

The young maiden in the water stared blankly at her, and Kikyo sadly gazed back, studying her reflection's appearance, as if searching for something within her soul. What her eyes locked upon caused the sorrow in her spirit to build up more, transferring the sadness within her out from her unending pools of ripples filled with misery.

The pale face of a young maiden, beautiful in her own way, as everything of Earth was meant to be. Long strands of ebony hair cascaded past her shoulders, to her slender waist, and were soaking wet from the rain, droplets of pure, sparkling water dripping delicately from her dark bangs. Her hazel eyes, an empty void, lacking life and happiness, did nothing to prevent the flood of pure tears from escaping, proclaiming that she couldn't bear the sadness and hurt that her soul captivated.

How could he? How could he leave me all alone in the world like this?

She buried her tear-stained face within her arms and cried on and on, listening to the music of the rain that the heavens tried to console her with.

He was all she lived for.

She fought to kill Naraku at the cost of her own life so she could be with him. She returned to him, like she promised, so they could be together. But he did not keep his promise.

Instead of a happy ending that would come after a long journey to defeat an enemy, he gave her nothing but a broken heart. His words, the words that came directly from his heart, his true feelings about her, stabbed sharply through her flesh and pierced through her heart, each sickening truce of his harsh words ripping her heart to shreds.

So...so this was the blinding light of truth.

What he did, what she thought he felt for her, was merely the cause of pity.

Was she really that pathetic?

He was always cold.

But he didn't used to be.

She melted his heart as she did to Inuyasha, didn't she?

She knew there was purity beneath that cold barrier around his bleak heart. She saw herself in him. He understood her too.

Just as Inuyasha had.

That was why she loved him.

It wasn't enough, was it?

Sesshomaru couldn't love. Especially not a human. Especially not one who was his brother's love. Especially not a dead one.

She felt so cold, despite how she always felt since she was dead and how merciless and bitter she became after being resserected.

She cried.

She was a broken shell of herself.

She'd cry on and on, but she'd have no man - no Sesshomaru - to be by her side and gently wipe away her tears as he caressed her pale cheek.

She'd scream to herself as she wallowed in her despair, but she'd have no man - no Sesshomaru - to fight away her fears.

She still had the bruise on her cheek from where he struck her, faint, but still viisble.

It hurt so much when he did that.

It hurt her cheek, to feel the violent slap of his hand.

It hurt her heart, to know he did that out of disgust and hatred.

This all felt like a dream.

But why were these feelings of pain so real?

It was a dream, wasn't it?

No...it wasn't a dream.

It was a nightmare.

She thought he cared for her.

She thought he could save her from being swallowed by the darkness of the empty void in her heart.

She thought he'd never betray her and leave her so she'd be alone in the world again.

He hated her.

And the strange thing was, she couldn't force herself to do the same.

She loved him.

She still did.

"Why did you betray me, Sesshomaru?" she cried out sadly, her voice echoing throughout the area as the wind carried her voice away. "How many dangers have I faced attempting to kill Naraku so we could be together? And now you simply cast me away, like Inuyasha did. What did I do to you to make you hate me? To make you forget your promises to me? Don't you remember how many times you said you loved me?"

She recieved no response. Nothing but the faint rumble of thunder in the distace.

Kikyo embraced her small form, as if trying to comfort herself. Her entire body trembled uncontrollably from the chill of the wind and from the heavy burden of sadness that weighed upon her shoulders. Not even time could erase the scars that Sesshomaru had left in her heart.

She cried harder.

She cried because she now had no reason to live anymore.

She cried because the two men she had loved had betrayed her, spoke false words into her ear, melted her within a warm embrace, made promises they couldn't keep.

She cried because her life would never turn out the way she wished it to.

She cried because everyone hated her enough to the point where they'd cast her away and pretend her existence meant nothing.

Sesshomaru probably hated her too.

He probably hated her because she was human.

He probably hated her because she was once his brother's love.

He probably hated her because she was foolish enough to fall in love with the cold-hearted Lord of the Western Lands.

He probably hated her because she made him believe he had loved her, which in truth, his "love" for her was merely created out of pity.

No. It wasn't a doubtful 'probably.'

It was the truth.

He hated her.

A/N. Gah, I know they're OOC, but it just turned out that way. Poor Kikyo. D; R&R please!

Hm, I was thinking of making a sequel where Sesshomaru gets some sense knocked into that thick skull of his. xDD What do you think?