Chapter 26 – The Right Direction

The gray coloration of her eyes seemed to ripple across the surface for a single moment in time. They darkened to black within the dim light of her room, while she stared endlessly into the wall. Then, slowly, a smile spread across her face while her vision focused on the images that flashed across her sight.

Ivy reached out slowly, trying to touch that which she saw. Her body instinctively knew that it would never be, but she understood that she was so close. She was so close to the beautiful union that she saw dancing across her mind, and she was positive that this time she would grasp a hold of it. Finally bringing together a pair which would never fall apart, where so many times before one had died or tried to break what was between them.

It was a glorious thought. It was a goal she had wanted to complete since she stepped inside the school. A goal that had taunted her since she could remember. Always teasing, drifting in and out until she was not positive if she would ever reach out and finally grasp it. Yet there it was, in its complete and utter beauty, and she did not wish to destroy that chance.

The event only took a few moments, but Ivy hissed when she felt her energy beginning to drain away. The ability to see outcomes came at a cost, and she barely managed to rip herself away from the lovely sight dancing in her mind. Her breathing was already labored, and she reached up to wipe the sweat from her brow. Despite the sudden weakness, though, she managed to smile at the thought of what was to come.

If only she managed to place the correct ripples in the water.

Allowing them to drift now would be a mistake. They would not be able to survive knowing that they could never obtain that which they truly wanted with all their heart. They would wither away, the two powerful beings becoming nothing, and die in the end.

That was not the outcome she wanted. No. She wished to see the utterly beautiful union that drifted through each of her visions. The union she knew would never falter in its love. The union she knew would last forever. That was what she wished to see come of this year, nothing more and nothing less. For she was not one to place her hopes too high, and one union such as what she had seen would make her happy.

A knock at the door alerted her of her visitor, and Ivy turned her attention to the door. Sighing softly under her breath, she breathed in the scent of the other female. "You may enter," she called.

Katana moved into the room with grace. She blinked at the sight of the headmistress in bed, but did not let it deter her. "Are you aware of the void's activities, Ivy?"

Staring the inu in the eye, Ivy nodded. "Yes, I am fully aware of Kanna's actions at the moment."

"Then why aren't you doing anything about it?" Katana snapped. "I would have thought you would put a stop to it by now. Especially since she has captured the souls of how many now? Two? Three students?"

Ivy smiled, saying, "Do not worry, Katana. The children are safe."

"Inside that—that mirror!" Katana laughed. "I don't think anyone is safe inside there. Especially when you have the knowledge of your body's actions, yet cannot do anything to stop it."

"If you are so worried about it, perhaps you should stop her," Ivy replied. "I did not see it as such a big problem at the moment. She stole the soul of her sister, but in return made it so Kagura does not have to feel as much pain at the moment. She stole the soul of a young boy, but out of defense. Suikotsu is unstable, he would have harmed her for saying no."

"Trying to justify this is not something I expected of you," Katana scowled. "It is almost worse than murder. Having your soul stolen is not a nice experience, nor is it one I would condemn on students."

"Katana," Ivy's smile turned secretive. "There are more reasons than one that I allow events to take place. You know that."

"Unfortunately, I do," she mumbled. "However—"

"My friend, trust me when I say that Kanna will not cause anyone harm. She will take a few souls, but only for a short amount of time, and I only permit it because I wish for her to understand her power. I want her to see what she truly is, and in reflection what she can do to help the union she will be in." Ivy closed her eyes a little, giving the inu a soft look. Silently telling her that all would be all right.

"How do you know?" Katana snapped.

Ivy merely smiled.

"You saw it, didn't you?" Katana asked. She finally gave a sigh, her rough exterior falling away. "You know you're not supposed to do that anymore. There is a limit, Ivy, and yours is up. Don't make me bring Yumi in here to make sure you stop using it."

"I don't see a reason for—"

"Damn it!" Katana hissed. "You're only killing yourself by using it, Ivy! Your strength to pull away is beginning to become weaker with each vision, and it will only be a matter of time before your mind is lost. You are needed here, Ivy, not hidden away in your visions."

"Why are you so angry, Katana?" Ivy asked.

"You try teaching when you have an extremely protective boy trying to make sure you never once insult or damage his chosen mate. Trust me, you won't like the experience."

Ivy began to laugh.

Katana scowled. "It's not funny. Especially when it's your fault! Trying to put those two together has taken quite some time, and now I'm beginning to think it's a bad idea. They were bad enough before they decided to stay with one another, and now they're sure to be ten times worse. And I do not want to deal with it."

"But Katana," Ivy's voice was distant, "in the end, it will be beautiful."

"Feh, as if I care," Katana growled.

"But you do care," Ivy whispered. "I know you do, because you have spent enough time in this place to understand what such a union will mean. What beauty it will bring to this withering piece of land we call a school. You know the magic will return to what it once was, and you know that you want to see it. You know you care, whether you deny it or not."

"Don't put words in my mouth," Katana snarled. "I understand what it would mean for the school, and I understand what it would mean for you to see it happen. However, you're becoming obsessed with it, Ivy, and that could have major consequences."

"Nothing could dampen my spirits," Ivy smiled. "Ever since I saw them, spoke with them, I knew they would bring back my happiness. Allow me to see one last vision become solid and beautiful, and finally whisper strength back into these old bones."

"That is not what I meant," Katana said. "Soon you will never be able to pull yourself away from this vision you have of the future, Ivy, and I don't want to see you stuck in such a state. I never wish to see that. It is a fate worse than being stuck in a mirror."

"So, we're back to the mirror?" Ivy asked, continuing to smile.

"Yes!" Katana shook her head. "That girl cannot be allowed to take any more souls, Ivy, and the ones that she has already taken must be released! We are not here to condemn those with bad souls, nor allow others to do it for us. We are here to help these students find those that will suit them, physically and emotionally, and bring them happiness."

"I told you, you cared," Ivy replied.

Katana growled in frustration. Narrowing her eyes, she hissed, "Do not make me restrain you, Ivy. You will stop using your ability to see the future, or I will lock you in a spell so powerful, you will not have the strength to try using it again. I do not want to bind you, but if you try again, I will be given no choice."

Ivy laughed, saying, "You may try, Katana. You may try, if you truly feel you have to."

"I won't try, Ivy, I will succeed," Katana replied, her tone hard.

Ivy's dark gray eyes twinkled while the inu turned and left. Leaning back into her bed, she shut her eyes once more. She did not drift into her vision again, knowing that Katana would storm back in when she felt the magic, but allowed sleep to take a hold of her mind. Her dreams were almost as beautiful as her visions, and a small smile graced her lips while she slept.


A soft hand grazed along her forehead, bringing her back into the land of consciousness. Slowly, she began to open her eyes, and scowled at the bright lighting that glared down upon her. After she had thoroughly cursed the lights, though, she searched for the person touching her, and was surprised to find the smiling face of a kitsune staring at her.

"Welcome back to the land of the living," the kitsune chuckled.

"Where am I?" she asked.

"You're in the Medical Wing, Kikyo." The kitsune paused for a moment. "A young hanyou brought you here after he saved you from a bad boy. Of course, we cannot be certain on that piece of information, so we were hoping you could clarify it."

Kikyo blinked again, turning when she realized the kitsune had said 'we'. Her eyes met those of Professor Katana, before the inu turned her head away in annoyance. "Whatever you wish to know, I am sure I can tell you," she replied, trying to sit up a little.

"We'll leave that for later," the kitsune smiled. "Right now there's an impatient inu that wants to see you. In fact, I'm surprised he hasn't barged in yet. He's been coming everyday since he brought you." She stopped again, turning her head, and whispered, "Such a sweet boy."

"Oh, but—"

The kitsune turned back, "Is something wrong?"

The look in her eyes stopped Kikyo from saying she did not wish to have a visitor, whether the person had saved her or not. She was disappointed in herself, because she should have been able to keep Suikotsu at bay at least until a teacher had come to investigate. Yet, in her moment of haste, she had allowed her energy to go after him in one blast, knocking herself out in the process.

"Well," the kitsune continued, "if there isn't a problem, I will go get him before he decides to tear down my door. Gods know I already have one too many doing that."

A deep growl came from Professor Katana's chest. Clearly the jab was at her, and she did not take it kindly.

When the kitsune returned, Kikyo was not surprised to see Inuyasha walking behind her. He was smiling, obviously happy to see her up, and sat down at in the chair placed at her bedside. She nodded to him, saying, "Hello, Inuyasha."

"I'm glad yer up, Kikyo," Inuyasha replied. "I was almost afraid you'd never get up, but Yumi said she'd have ya patched up in no time. You just used a little too much energy, that's all."

"I see," Kikyo nodded. It was awkward, speaking so politely with the hanyou she had tried to ignore and knowing he had saved her from Suikotsu's corpse. She was not quite sure how to proceed, but was glad that Inuyasha did not take offence and continued on with the conversation.

"Yeah, so," Inuyasha scratched the back of his neck, "I brought you here after I chased off Suikotsu—"

"That thing," Kikyo muttered, "was not Suikotsu."

Inuyasha blinked in surprise. His eyes were bright, Kikyo noticed, and she wondered why she had never noticed how much like the sun they actually were. So bright, yet they burned with a hidden passion that made them soft and lifelike. And they, Kikyo realized as she sat there staring at him, were beautiful.

"His soul was gone," Kikyo continued. "He is not the Suikotsu that entered this school or spent so much time around us during class. He is nothing but emptiness – a deep, hollow pit that's only purpose is to walk and cause chaos."

"I thought he smelled rather funny," Inuyasha grinned.

Kikyo saw his humor, and allowed herself a moment to smile. She had never wished to spend time with the hanyou, nor had she ever wanted to associate herself with him. She had been taught all her life that she was dangerous to anything with youkai blood, that she needed to keep her distance, and she had. She allowed herself small privileges – such as speaking with those with a very small amount – but she had never thought one day she would be speaking casually with someone she could easily kill with a touch of a finger.

"So, ah," Inuyasha's ears flattened against his head. "What do you think was wrong with him?"

Kikyo's eyes saddened, for she wondered the same thing. Suikotsu had been someone she considered close to her, though she was not foolish enough not to have noticed the attention he showed to another girl. She would miss him until she found his soul. "I don't know," she admitted.

"Oh," Inuyasha replied. The conversation dwindled from there, as he stared at the young miko sitting in the hospital bed. She looked so sad, and he wished beyond anything else that he could make that sadness go away.

Quietly, Kikyo finally broke the silence. "Thank you for saving me," she said. She turned her face away, ashamed with her hasty actions. She should have tried harder, thought more about the situation and calculated. She should have been able to replel the evil that Suikotsu had become, instead of falling so quickly. She should have been able to do many things, but nonetheless she was grateful that that monster had not been able to use her body the way he had wished to.

"Yer welcome," Inuyasha scoffed. "I didn't really do much, though."

"You did enough," Kikyo smiled softly. And, she almost giggled when she realized that Inuyasha's face had darkened to a powdered pink. The hanyou looked quite surprised with her expression, and she realized just how little she had ever really paid attention to him. She could not call forth any picture of him looking surprised, let alone most other emotions. In fact, the only thing she did remember was that lingering hope that often settled into his beautiful amber eyes.

"I guess so," Inuyasha nodded. "I guess I'm just glad that I did that much, since I'm not quite sure what made me go that way. It was like there was some voice in the back of my head, and I couldn't ignore it."

"Perhaps your subconscious sensed the distress by tapping into the magic of the school," Kikyo offered. "It is ancient magic, so old now that it is beginning to fade away, but it still protects us the best it can. It suppresses the hatred, the anger, and the hateful emotions and allows us to coexist in a slightly more peaceful atmosphere. But I still can't help but wonder if it has another purpose all together."

"Kikyo?" Inuyasha blinked.

"Haven't you ever noticed?" Kikyo asked, her eyes bright. "There is something going on in this school, something that brings together those that would never look at one another otherwise. Something that manipulates us and fate itself, while we remain oblivious within its suffocating walls."

Inuyasha listened, his puppy-dog ears perked a bit higher in attention. He had never thought so much about the stupid building around him, but as Kikyo spoke, he realized she was right. There was something odd about the place, since he doubted he would have ever thought about even trying to court a miko elsewhere. The very thought could still almost make him laugh, since they were so dangerous to his blood. So, he said, "Yeah, yeah, I've noticed."

Kikyo spoke more with the hanyou afterward, allowing him to ask a few questions before Yumi decided it was time for her to rest some more. A smile touched her face as he left, because though she had been taught to never interact with those she could destroy, Kikyo was glad to have spoken with Inuyasha. He was a bit rough around the edges, but there was a certain quality about him that seemed to draw her in. And she liked that.


Sitting down at the lunch table, Kagome instantly began a conversation with her friends. Despite that, she was not entirely oblivious to Sesshoumaru sitting down next to her, his arm brushing up against hers. And apparently, neither was Sango from the sly look she cast her. The sad thing was, once Sango noticed, everyone else noticed, too.

Shippo, showing his kitsune nature, asked, "Aren't you two sitting a little close there? Usually you sit at least far enough not to touch one another."

Sesshoumaru glanced up briefly. Kitsune were always those that pointed out the obvious in an attempt to make sure they ended up with the information they wanted. Unfortunately for that one, Sesshoumaru knew his tactic and was not falling for it.

Kirara bumped him in the arm. She thought it was rather cute, considering how long she had had to watch them nip at each other's throats. Not only that, but she was glad everything was working out for the better, though she knew they still had a long way to go. A relationship was never perfect, and they made that very clear.

"What was that for?" Shippo frowned. "I only wanted to know why they've decided to—"

Kirara, surprisingly, cast a glance at him that made him shut his mouth.

Quietly at first, Sango began to laugh. As the noise got louder, she wrapped an arm around the neko's shoulder. "How did you do that, Kirara?" she asked. "I've been trying since the beginning of the school year to find a way to get him to shut his mouth. Always going on about the treasure he hordes and the pretty women he's noticed."

"Hey!" Shippo yelled, face turning red. "You're the one that asked!"

Miroku smirked, "Ah, it appears that I am not the only one here that appreciates the beauty of the opposite sex."

Shippo glared at him, snapping, "I've got a reason, though. It is in my nature to like beautiful things. What's your excuse, Miroku?"

"Why, it is a sad, miserable curse that has been handed down from my great-great-great-grandfather," Miroku sighed. He appeared truly innocent. "My family has had to suffer with it for so long, and now we cannot seem to find a way to—"

A spoon smacked him in the face, which resulted in the rest of the table, minus Sesshoumaru, erupting in laughter. Sango, her hand still raised after throwing the utensil, smirked when they began to laugh. She said, "That's what you get for lying!"

"But, Sango," Miroku pleaded, "I am not lying. I swear to you, from the bottom of my heart, that it is so!"

"Cut it with the innocent act, Miroku," Sango glared. "I've met your family, and it is not a curse that makes you go after pretty girls."

Miroku blinked, saying, "If you are referring to my father, the only reason he does not go after women anymore is because of my mother."

Kagome burst into another fit of giggles. They stopped abruptly when she felt a hand settle on her thigh, and looked up to find Sesshoumaru looking at her. A blush formed across her cheeks, but she knew that no one would notice while they were focusing on Sango and Miroku's argument.

Slowly, a smirk formed on the inu's lips.

"Ha!" Sango cried. "It shows what you pay attention to, since I've seen him look the other way plenty of times! Your mother just puts up with it, and hits him when he stares too long."

His face very serious, Miroku said, "Perhaps."

"As amusing as this is," Shippo started, "could we get back on topic?"

Miroku blinked at the kitsune, asking, "Whatever do you mean—?"

He was cut off when Sesshoumaru stiffened, growling, "What do you want, hanyou?"

They looked up to find a somewhat shorter, puppy-dog eared boy standing over Sesshoumaru. His silver hair and golden eyes made it clear they were related, while Sesshoumaru's voice made it clear that he did not like it all that much. Though, when he spoke it also became clear that they were very different. He said, "What, did I crash a party or something?"

Kagome raised her hand briefly, recognizing him. "Hello, Inuyasha." His ear flicked in her direction, but otherwise he did not make a move to acknowledge her.

"This Sesshoumaru will not repeat himself," he replied.

"Oh, cut it with the high and mighty act, will ya," Inuyasha grumbled. "I'm not here to fight with ya, and I'm not here to make it so ya can't get into some innocent girl's pants."

The rest of the group turned to stare at them both, while a dark blush appeared on Kagome's face. Sesshoumaru's hand had yet to move, and Kagome doubted it would, which meant it was only a matter of time before any of them noticed. And from the looks of things, Shippo, Bankotsu, and Miroku already had.

Though he seemed as if he did not notice Kagome's embarrassment, Sesshoumaru growled again. "Inuyasha," he warned. "You will either shut your mouth or get on with your point."

"Right," Inuyasha huffed. He twisted on his foot, plopping down into the seat next to his brother, and crossed his arms over his chest. "I know yer not the best choice to ask this, but I need some help when it comes to this girl I—"

"You're having women problems?" Miroku asked. He avoided Sango's eyes, knowing she was more than ready to chuck something else at him. Probably something with an edge the next time.

Inuyasha turned to him, frowning, "Yeah… What's it to ya?"

"Oh, nothing," Miroku smiled a bit. "Nothing at all. But, perhaps I could be of some service to you."

"Like you could help anyone," Sango hissed. Momentarily, she forgot about Inuyasha's crude comment toward Sesshoumaru. She already knew he was courting her, whether Kagome knew it yet or not, and there was a likely chance he wanted in her pants. So, there really was no reason to think on it too much unless Kagome did not want it, and from the looks of things she would not be opposed to the idea.

Inuyasha waited a moment to answer, before he twisted in his seat. He had been dragged to their table before, and they seemed pretty interesting, so maybe the boy could help him. So, placing his hands on the table, he leaned forward, and said, "Ok, I'm game. What ya got, man?"

Sesshoumaru rolled his eyes. If the hanyou planned on getting advice from that boy, he had better hope the girl liked to have her ass grabbed. Because knowing Inuyasha, the idiot would try it just to make sure it did not work. He was just lucky to have not picked it up already, considering they were both in drama.

"How about we start from the beginning?" Miroku smiled.

"I guess we could do that," the hanyou nodded. "Her name is Kikyo. She's a miko in the drama department—"

"Kikyo?" Kagome asked. "As in, my cousin Kikyo?"

"I thought there was something familiar about ya," Inuyasha said. "But yeah, from the resemblance, I'd say yer probably related."

Kagome frowned, muttering, "I sure hope there's something familiar. You ran into me in the hallway toward the beginning of the year, after all."

"Did ya say somethin'?" Inuyasha asked.

"Oh, I merely wanted to know if her last name was Haya?" Kagome easily lied. No reason to get Inuyasha mad at her. Or make him leave, since he seemed like the type of person that had to push aside a lot of his pride in order to ask for help.

Inuyasha thought for a moment, before nodding. "Yeah, that's it. Kikyo Haya." Faintly, he remembered a conversation that sounded a lot like the one he was currently having, except Kikyo was hissing at him and trying to pound into his head that they were related. After a moment, it clicked. Kikyo had been helping the girl, carrying her, and he had asked why, only for Kikyo to say something about her mother's maiden name and whatnot. He decided not to mention it, though.

"Then that's my cousin," Kagome smiled.

"Hn, please continue, Inuyasha," Miroku smiled.

"Ah, right," Inuyasha paused. He needed a few seconds to remember where he had been. "I like Kikyo, but she doesn't really like me. She's always hanging out with this idiot Suikotsu, who clearly likes this Kanna chick. But, yesterday she was attacked—"

"Is she ok?" Kagome gasped. Kikyo and her might not be on the best of terms since she had decided to stick by Sesshoumaru, but they were still family. They still needed to look out for one another, because no matter what, they would always be family in the end.

"Yeah," Inuyasha nodded. "I scared the guy off before he could really do anything to her."

Miroku sensed there was more to the story. He had never really tried to get along with Kikyo, considering the young miko believed she needed to isolate herself in order to live happily. However, curiosity got the better of him. So, he asked, "And who exactly attacked Kikyo?"

"Suikotsu," Inuyasha growled. "The same guy that was supposed to be her friend."

Bankotsu chuckled from his end of the table. "That's a riot," he said. "Suikotsu's too nice to attack anyone unless they've hurt something close to him. You must have been mistaken."

"What do you know?" Inuyasha hissed. "I saw him with my own eyes."

"Suikotsu is—"

Sango coughed, interrupting Bankotsu's speech. "There are a lot of other reasons that a person might attack someone else. Or have you forgotten we're within a school filled with youkai and ningen alike, Bankotsu?"

"I haven't forgotten," Bankotsu huffed. "Kind of hard to do when there's people like him wonderin' around the place."

Inuyasha's ears flattened against his head. He did not like that guy. He gave him the same vibe that Suikotsu did, like there was more to him that he let on, and Inuyasha's eyes were drawn to the mark on his forehead. "Like yer one to talk," he spat. "You've got demon blood in ya, too, don't ya?"

"Not enough to make a difference," Bankotsu smirked. "Unlike those little ears on top of your head, all I got was the minor ability to control lightning."

"Lightning?" Inuyasha scowled. "You call that a minor ability?"

"Hey!" Sango slammed her fist against the table. "I thought we were talking about Inuyasha's problem, not your guys need to show the other who has the bigger di—"

"Why, my darling Sango, such vulgar language," Miroku cut in.

Glaring at him, she said, "I hadn't finished yet. So, technically, I never said anything vulgar."

Shippo snickered, "She's got a point."

"Um," Kirara's quiet voice spoke up. "Perhaps we should get back on topic."

"I agree with Kirara, and I'm sure Kagome seconds that—"

"Don't drag me into this," Kagome said.

"—So," Sango continued, "how 'bout you sit down and shut up, Bankotsu—"

"Hey! You can't tell me what to—" Bankotsu began. His voice quickly shrank away, though, when Sango turned her burning eyes upon him. The girl could be rather scary at times, and it was clear to him that she was beginning to boil over the top. Best just to keep his mouth shut for now.

"—And you get to the point, Inuyasha," Sango finished. She leaned back in her seat, surveying her work and smiled a little. The whole table had gone quiet, and there was a small smirk on Shippo's and Sesshoumaru's faces. That, in her opinion, was a job well done.

Kagome shook her head. She understood Sango's need to be dramatic, but she took a glance at Sesshoumaru. He really should not get so much satisfaction from his brother's stupefied look. It was his brother, whether he liked it or not.

Sesshoumaru turned his head just slightly, raising an eyebrow at the miko's sour look. He wondered briefly what had put her in such a mood, but paid it little attention as he gripped onto her thigh. She gave a small sound of surprise, her sour look gone, and blushed.

"Kagome?" Sango asked.

"N-Nothing," Kagome stuttered. Damn that hand. And damn her beast for suddenly purring at the fact that their chosen had decided to give them such attention. She did not need everyone staring at her like that, and she did not want everyone to suddenly jump to conclusions. She had only kissed him once, but she knew them and they would believe so much more had happened.

In fact, she should really slap him because of that hand. He might have admitted that he was courting her, but he did not really have the right yet to touch her so familiarly. However, her beast growled from the back of her mind, disapproving the very idea of hitting their alpha and chosen mate. She almost sighed, because she was not actually going to hit him, since she actually liked it – whether that was her beast's influence or not.

"Sure didn't sound like nothing," Shippo replied. "Sounded more like—"

"He's got his hand on her leg, ok," Inuyasha growled. He was really starting to regret even coming near the group. He could have probably come up with something by then without their help, arguing, and constant need to point out the stupidest shit.

Sango's mouth dropped open. Then, slowly, she smiled and nearly shouted, "I was so right! I told you, Kagome!"

"Hey," Inuyasha scowled. "I'm trying to ask for help here, not listen to you guys talk about my half-brother's stupid little relationship."

A growl echoed from Sesshoumaru's chest. "Hanyou—"

"Oh, Bankotsu!" a voice called. "You'll never believe what just happened!"

"Jakotsu?" Bankotsu blinked, turning in his seat.

"I was talking to the cutest—oh, look!" Jakotsu clasp his hands in front of his face. "You've got friends! And one of them is that devilishly handsome youkai that sits next to me in art! Hello, handsome!"

Sesshoumaru's eyebrow twitched a little. He was not sure how he had put up with that homosexual for so long, since he really wanted to rip his head from his shoulders. Especially now, since it was rather obvious that he was never going to return the attraction that the boy had. His beast would never allow it, whether he was into the idea or not, and he leaned just a bit more into Kagome's side.

Jakotsu smirked seductively, saying, "Oh, don't be that way, handsome. I'm sure you'll—" His eyes slid over to the girl's just beyond Sesshoumaru, and he stiffened at the raging fire settled there. He gulped, his smirk fading away, as he shrank into Bankotsu's back. "Bankotsu, save me from that evil woman and her evil stare!"

Bankotsu shook his head, as he said, "You're gonna have to find someone else to save you, Jakotsu. Kagome's a miko—"

Jakotsu's squeaked, "A miko?!?" Distantly, his mind knew that someone else had mentioned that information before, many times, but it did not register, as it should have. All he knew was a miko could be hazardous to his small amount of youkai blood, and he did not want to mingle with one if she chose to give him such a stare. "Please, be careful, handsome! That woman's dangerous!"

Sesshoumaru scoffed. The miko might be powerful, but he doubted she would be able to overcome the sheer mass of his youkai. She would probably suffocate long before she even managed to harm him if she chose to attack him. However, he knew such a thing would not happen as he squeezed her thigh once more, causing her blush to darken. He was in no danger.

His eye twitched a bit, as his ears flattened against his head once more. "Damn it," he cursed. He knew this was a bad idea from the beginning. His brother was ignoring him completely, favoring his piece of ass, and the rest of them were too distracting for any of them to even think about helping him. "I'm outta here."

"Inuyasha!" Miroku called. "We haven't told you how to—"

"Screw you," Inuyasha scowled. "Yer all just a bunch of nut jobs, the lot of ya. You probably couldn't help a blind guy piss in a can."

"Such language," Miroku huffed.

"Yer one to talk," Inuyasha growled back at him. "Pervert."

"Hey—" Miroku was not able to finish, as Inuyasha stomped away. He shook his head afterward, knowing there was no stopping the hanyou from leaving. His temper was short, especially when it came to Kikyo, and Miroku had watched him act enough in drama class to know Inuyasha's mind would not be changed.

"That wasn't very nice," Jakotsu muttered. "But did you see those pretty little ears on his head, big brother? I just want to touch them and cuddle them and keep them all to myself!"

The bell rang, signaling lunch was over, before Bankotsu could reply to him.


Yumi glanced up at the sound of the floor creaking, her hearing easily picking up the sound. She sighed almost instantly, hoping that it was not that stubborn hanyou again. And, just to make sure, she sniffed lightly at the air. The hanyou's scent did not filter into her nose, perking her curiosity, and Yumi finally stood. Her fingers weaved together in front of her, as she moved to the other room, and she was a little surprised to find her newest charge standing quietly over the bed of her younger brother.

She hoped for a moment that Akio did not awaken. Kikyo and Kagome looked much alike, and there was no telling how he would react in his state. It could be violent, despite his wish for Kagome to love him, and she would hate to take away the one thing that had given him hope thus far.

After a moment, she called out, "Kikyo, is something the matter?"

The young miko stiffened a bit, straightening up a bit more. She cast a glance in her direction, as she shook her head. "No," Kikyo said. "I merely thought I heard him call my cousin's name."

Yumi moved closer to the bed, as she said, "He might have."

Kikyo glanced up, her dark eyes narrowing. She asked, "And why would he do that?"

"Akio suffers from a broken heart," Yumi replied.

The miko easily put the pieces together, as she nodded. She glanced down at the boy once more, silently calling him foolish. It was obvious that her cousin was infatuated with that inu, Sesshoumaru, so trying to love her was asking for his heart to be broken. "He should not have tried to love Kagome," she said after a while.

Yumi nodded. "I agree, but there are some things in life that you cannot change."

Kikyo remained silent. She stared at the boy in the bed, watching as his brow creased and he once again whimpered Kagome's name. Her energy, still recovering from when she released it against Suikotsu, rose at the very sound. She knew the youkai mind, knew how quickly it could morph any emotion into hate, and her body instinctively knew not to take any chances.

"Kikyo," Yumi said. She had felt the rise in power. "Perhaps you should return to your bed now. I will watch over Akio."

"Forgive me," Kikyo dipped her head. "I merely wish to keep my cousin safe."

"I understand," Yumi smiled. "We all wish to keep our family safe."

Realization formed in Kikyo's dark eyes, as she nodded. She twisted on her foot, moving back to her bed, and pushed down the energy rising within her body. The younger kitsune would not harm her cousin, she was certain of it, because the older kitsune would keep him in check. Protect him, as family should.

KibaSin: I apologize for the wait. I have a hectic school schedule this year, and I'm also trying my hand at the NaNoWriMo (National Writing Month). I've only got my idea flattened down enough to start it and I've still got over 35000 words to write before I'm done. WHICH is the reason I technically never entered, but told myself that I'd try it to see if I'll do it again next year. Unfortunately, this year I'm not doing a Sesshoumaru/Kagome piece but a Sasuke/Kagome one, and next year I'll probably write another Sesshoumaru/Kagome fan fic.

So, until next time!