"It's referred to in rumors and myths as 'The Sealed One'," Kikyo explained. "It's a pre-war artifact of incredible power. It's also nearly sentient, from what I've read."
"So what is it?" Sango asked, leaning forward.
"I'm not sure, the scriptures I've found aren't really that specific. But it's supposed to contain the soul of a very powerful and very old youkai," Kikyo continued. "Apparently the human priests of the war found a way to seal the youkai away and focus his power. That was what started the war in the first place."
"Well thanks for the history lesson, but what does that have to do with us?" Inuyasha asked. Kikyo coughed slightly.
"The scriptures said the youkai's power is near infinite, but is too volatile to be simply harnessed by anyone. There's only one person with the power to tame the youkai's soul and use the Sealed One. But such people are incredibly rare, there is only one in a millennia, if that," she said.
"So, how do we find out who that is?" Kagome asked.
"I don't know, but I do know the Sealed One is useless without them, so my guess is that someone is the one heading up the youkai underground," Kikyo muttered. "Why else would they be pursuing the Sealed One like that, if they did not have the one person who could use it?"
"Right. The youkai underground," Inuyasha nodded. "We've gotta find them and weed them out before Naraku does. I don't trust the jackass as far as I could throw him,"
"Me neither. We can't stay here any longer, Naraku's hunting you and me specifically," Kagome said, looking at Inuyasha. "And seeing as how the underground is youkai run, there's only one place to go now." The group of six shared a glance before Inuyasha stood up.
"Right," Inuyasha sighed. "Sango, you and Shippo stay here, try and dig up any further info you can on the underground. Kikyo, you help. Miroku, you and me are hitting the streets and getting supplies, see if there's anyone else leaving the city, we can hitch a ride with them. Kagome, you stay here in case the police show up," Kagome nodded as Inuyasha grabbed Miroku's hand and pulled him to the door. Shippo grabbed a chair and slid up next to Sango.
"Okay, I'm pulling up the files on all the youkai attacks in the past year," Sango said, typing rapidly. Kikyo stood up and grabbed her suitcase, and Kagome moved to the window to look down at the streets. Inuyasha and Miroku left the office and closed the office door.
- - - - - - - - - -
"Do you have any idea what we're doing?" Miroku asked, the hanyou walking to the elevators. Inuyasha reached into his pocket and slipped on a small brass ring, his youkai features vanishing.
"Not really, never been in a war before," he replied, pushing the button to call the elevator. "I'll talk to my dad, he might have some sort of idea about the underground's ringleader. If nothing else we can stay at the Taisho Castle, I lived there before I came to Haven." The elevator doors beeped, and the scent of sulfur hit Inuyasha's nose as they opened. "DOWN!" he spun around and tackled Miroku to the ground. The air behind him tore at the barrage of gunfire. Inuyasha grabbed Miroku by the collar and dashed down the corridor into a cubicle.
"What the hell was that?" Miroku cried. There was the sound of shattering glass, and Inuyasha looked over the wall of the cubicle. The windows had been shot out, and smoke bombs had been fired into the office. The few employees that had been around when they arrived had screamed and ducked in cover, but were being round up and herded into the elevator by the assailants.
"The Elite Guard…damn it!" Inuyasha hissed, recognizing the uniforms of the Council's shock troopers. He pulled off his ring and reverted to his hanyou form even as he dashed along the wall. A few stray bullets zinged past him as he pulled open the door to Sango's office and slammed it shut behind him. Kikyo and Sango had taken cover with Kagome and Shippo at the ready.
"What was that?" Sango asked.
"The Elite Guard, time to go," Inuyasha snapped. He marched to the window and looked down. At least three EG vans were parked, and police cars were forming a blockade on the roads. "Shit," he cursed, stepping back. The smoke trickled into the office, and Shippo covered his nose.
"We need another way out!" Kagome shouted. "We have to try and sneak to the stairwell and slip out the back!" Suddenly, a burst of bullets shattered the window on Sango's door.
"Got a plan B?" Sango asked. Inuyasha ran to the broom closet and pulled it open, throwing cleaning supplies into the office. "Hey, where's Miroku?" Sango asked suddenly.
"In the office, don't worry, he'll be…" Inuyasha stopped at the sound of a door, and whirled around. "Sango!" he snarled. He groaned and slammed a fist into the wall at the back of the closet.
"What are you doing?" Kikyo cried.
"Making a Plan B!" Inuyasha replied, hitting the wall again. This time, his fist met and crumbled brick.
"You don't even know what's behind that wall!" Kagome protested.
"I know what's behind that door!" the hanyou countered, aiming another punch. The brick shattered to reveal the drywall on the other side.
- - - - - - - - - -
"Miroku!" Sango screamed, running through the smoke-filled office. The sounds of gunfire, more screams and running were all around, and Miroku didn't respond. Sango ducked behind a cubicle and fell her knees, coughing and wiping away the water that had formed in her eyes. "Miroku!" An explosion answered her this time, and the sprinkler systems came on to drench the room. Sango got up and ran to the end of the room, and bumped into a man who stepped around the corner. Sango fell back and looked up as the man grinned.
"Hello birdie," Jakotsu snarled, grabbing her and picking her up the collar. "Long time."
- - - - - - - - - -
Inuyasha backed up and charged, slamming through the brick and landing with a thud on the other side of the wall. This room was also filled with smoke and flame, but seemed largely empty.
"Come on, we've gotta move!" Kagome said, grabbing Kikyo's hand.
"Sango and Miroku!" Shippo cried.
"I'll get them, you three find a way out, we'll meet up in the back!" Inuyasha replied, pushing him through the hole after the women. He marched through Sango's office just as an EG opened the door. He quickly opened fire, and Inuyasha slashed, hi weapon falling apart. A quick punch leveled the guard, and Inuyasha stepped over his body. He waved a hand through the thick smoke and coughed, cupping a hand over his nose to block the fumes. He stumbled through the office and listened. The thundering of the flames filled his ears and blocked out a great deal of sound. But there were still footsteps, and screams.
"Sango!" He screamed, pushing through the flames. He heard a distant cling, and froze. Suddenly, a sword point shot out of the smoke. Inuyasha cried out as the blade pierced his side and pushed his back, skewering him and slamming him into the wall. Inuyasha slammed his fists on the extending blade as Jakotsu emerged from the vapors.
"Ah, you again. How delicious," Jakotsu gushed, twisting his weapon. Inuyasha's eyes widened and he let out a cry. "I owe you one," Jakotsu sneered, extracting his weapon. Inuyasha fell to his knees and leapt as the sword once again shot towards hit, stabbing the wall.
"What have you done with Sango?" He snarled, ducking behind a desk. The cubicle walls fell as Jakotsu missed.
"Birdie is taking a nap," Jakotsu laughed, snapping out his wrist. The sword sliced through the desk, and Jakotsu pouted. "Come on, hiding isn't fun!" He protested, hefting his sword over his shoulder.
- - - - - - - - - -
Kagome threw open the door to the fire escape, the bells going off as she did so. The sprinkler system sprayed on, and Kagome looked down the stairs. Guards were still running down them.
"Up," she hissed, over her shoulder, running. Kikyo and Shippo followed her up the stairs, to the roof. Kagome emerged onto the asphalt and ran to the edge, looking down at the convoy of EG trucks and police cruisers.
"Now what?" Shippo shouted, slamming the door shut.
"I don't know, we're trapped," Kagome moaned, backing up. A quick breeze whipped her hair past her head, and she spun around. A black helicopter was flying overhead, and slowly descended. Bankotsu leapt out as the copter landed.
"What are you doing here?" Kikyo shouted over the blades.
"Naraku's lost his mind. I figure if you rats are leaving this ship, that's good enough for me," he explained, nodding at Kikyo. "Come on, we gotta get out of here, the EG will find us soon."
"We can't, there's still people in there!" Kagome protested. Bankotsu cursed and looked up at the sky.
"Ya got five minutes, then we gotta go, or we don't get a choice," he replied. Kagome nodded and ran to the fire escape. Kikyo looked at Bankotsu.
"You're serious?" She asked. Bankotsu nodded and brushed a lock of hair out of his face.
"Trust me, right now there's nothing I'd like more than to kick Naraku's ass," he assured her.
- - - - - - - - - -
"Inuyasha!" Kagome called, emerging back on the main floor. She ran through the flames and gasped. "Sango!" she screamed, kneeling. Sango lay limp against a cubicle wall, another limp form behind her. Miroku. Kagome felt the two for a pulse and let out a breath. "Thank god," she breathed, standing up.
The wall shattered a few feet away, and Kagome spun as Jakotsu landed on the floor, coughing. Inuyasha leapt through the hole in his wake and pounced. Kagome watched as he tore Jakotsu's sword from his grasp, and raised a claw. She gasped and turned her head, the sound effects filling in the rest.
"What are you doing here?" Inuyasha grunted, standing up.
"There's a helicopter on the roof, come on," Kagome explained. Inuyasha nodded and heaved Sango and Miroku over either shoulder. Kagome put a hand around his waist, gasping at the blood seeping from his side, and led him to the fire escape.
When the two reached the roof, Bankotsu was watching the skies again, and Kagome looked up to see why: a police helicopter was circling overhead.
"Attention pilot, do not attempt to take off. A squadron of troops is on its way up to apprehend you!" The police called. "Do not attempt to take off, or our forces will open fire!" Bankotsu looked down at the hanyou and Kagome.
"I think that's our cue to get the hell out of here!" He urged. Kagome nodded and climbed into the copter, Inuyasha behind her. Shippo and Kikyo were already inside. Bankotsu leapt inside and slid the door shut. "Take us up," he said. The pilot nodded and pushed the throttle forward, and the helicopter lifted into the skies. Bankotsu took a breath and stared at Inuyasha. "So, where to?" he asked. Inuyasha and Kagome looked at each other.
"The only place left," Kagome sighed. Inuyasha nodded and crossed his arms.
As much as it pains me to say this, this story is on an indefinite hiatus.
I'm sorry, I really am, I hate to have to drop a story this far along, but I have to. After two months, nothing has cured my writer's block, and it's not just like I'm having trouble with a lone chapter, but the rest of the story. My plans for it have gone up, I have so many loose ends to tie up and no idea how to do it. Also, I have another story I wanted to post, and I have to get it up before it busts.
I'm sorry. I will update again someday if I can, but for now, the story is postponed. It will remain up, but it may stay like this for a while.