Summary: A sequel to Possession. You have to read Possession or you won't get it. Troubles occur for Kagome and her lover. AU OneShot
Fame or self: Which
matters more? For one gains by losing He who is attached to things will suffer
much. --the Dao De
Self or wealth: Which is more precious?
Gain or loss: Which is more painful?
And loses by gaining.
A contented man is never disappointed.
For one gains by losing
He who is attached to things will suffer
--the Dao De Ching
"…never disappointed." Clay read the line aloud and his eyes tightened into a glare, tossing the book across the room. "What a load of crap." He was just bitter, it wasn't that he didn't believe the words but they were still written by a human and easily ignorable because of this. Within his mind he considered everything that had happened and what he had just read, breaking apart the moments and scenarios that seemed to come to focus so much more clearly. Perhaps if he had done this… or maybe if he had just said that… then life would be a little less confusing now? He had to wonder if there would ever be a day where his mind didn't consider the past as a mistake. A ringing telephone caused his thoughts to halt and he let out an audible sigh. Lifting the receiver her held it to his ear with a dispassionate look of boredom on his face and merely said "Hello." Because he knew it was rude to do so and felt like being a jerk today. The person on the other end, however, didn't seem to mind one bit and the smile they gave was practically tangible on his side. "Why sweetheart, I never knew you could be so cheerful in the morning! I didn't get a chance to see you when you got up; you always wake so early and leave before I do!" Now the voice was pouting but not very convincingly. In the background the cry of a baby could be heard along with the screams of a toddler. The voice on the other end let out a sigh and yelled at the children. "Be quiet, I'm talking to your father!" It always ended up this way. Last night had been the same as any other night and it was beginning to eat away at his nerves. Clay was beginning fear that slowly… he and Kagome were becoming far too distant. "Honey, I've got a lot of work and it sounds like you've got your hands full. Why don't I call you back okay?" He said and the woman went silent for a while before giving a little "Okay, I'll be waiting!" still trying to be cheerful and failing miserably. They both knew what had really been said. He hadn't actually said he'd call her back, instead he'd whined about how he didn't want to hear their children crying and that her phone call was just an irritating reminder of what was waiting back home. She hadn't really said that she would be waiting either but instead had accused him of never caring that she called anymore. It was childish and it was horrible but it was the routine that the lovers had fallen into far too easily.
He sat there for a while, looking down on his rather bare desk and wondering why they made up excuses. For a time both had threatened separation and even divorce but it seemed that neither one really felt that was necessary. Love was still there, he could feel it and he guessed she could too, if only they could just reach out and take hold of it again. Ever since the birth of their second child though the passion in their lives began to dwindle to a small flame and Clay was beginning to feel that their entire existence was becoming meaningless, just like it had felt before they had met. When he had seen her that evening, sitting alone on that cold bench it had struck such a part of him that he had come alive with just the first glance of her eyes. Now he was so accustomed to that look that it gave him nothing but a reminiscent feeling and now he wanted that past back. There were times when he considered maybe taking her to Japan, leaving the kids with someone for a while and going to her family home to have some time to themselves like that had back then but every time he tried to set up the deal was broke by one thing or another. First it was the unexpected birth of their family friend Azuka and Haru's baby girl. Then it was a business problem that required his attention. Another time Kagome got very ill and there wasn't any way they could travel. Each time became more hopeless and finally he had given up. There was just no way he could ever recreate the past. He had to accept that. The phone rang again and he stared at it for a while before reaching out to lift it again and respond with a much more business-like tone. It wasn't Kagome and his day began to shift away from his lonely thoughts and onto work. Before he knew it the time flew by and it was already time to go home. Clay felt himself sink further into a depressed state as he gathered his things and wandered down the hall to his car, ignoring his co-workers as they said goodbye.
As he drove his mind began to wander again and for some reason as he came to the exit that would lead to his home he continued past, going further out towards the desert and into the growing darkness. After several hours of driving Clay looked down at the clock to see that it was already half-past eight and decided it was probably better to be headed home. Pulling into the driveway he noticed that none of the lights were on and as he parked the car and climbed out he could hear the faint sound of music in the background. Brow furrowing he walked up to the door only to stop just as he was ready to place his key in the lock when his mind pulled the lyrics to the song into the forefront of his mind. This was the song she had chosen for their first dance. Curiosity caused him to turn and go towards the side of the house, opening the gate to their fence and entering the back yard where the music was coming from. He closed the gate behind him and walked down the small stretch of grass that ran alongside the house before the patio area came into view and he stopped, keys falling from his hands to land on the ground in a tinkling wave of brass. She looked up at him from her position there on the cold bench that sat on their patio, hands held under her face where it had been cupped and tears streaming down her cheeks. Within him Clay felt something stir and he reached out towards her. "Kagome…" She didn't let him finish as she rushed up to him and threw her arms around him, kissing him desperately. "I thought you'd left me." He stared down at her and then looked around. She had recreated their memories right here in their home, with a few small changes of course. The children weren't home, usually they would still be screaming right now in their fight to stay awake but it was very quiet. On the patio table was a small dinner of one of his favorite dishes, linguine and clam sauce, but the short stature of the pillar candles between the two plates proved that the sauce was probably cold and the noodles hard by now. And here she was, his beautiful wife all dressed in a pretty little blue dress with a black shawl around her shoulders and her hair pulled back in a little French bun – crying her eyes out like someone had just stepped on her foot. The music played on as he thought about this and swallowed down the lump in his throat. He had hurt her again.
Enough was enough. Pulling her closer into his arms he looked down on her curious face and leaned down, giving her a gentle kiss. "No, Kagome, I won't leave you. Not ever."