Authors Note: All right, it's chapter nine, and I figure it's about time for Kagome and Sesshoumaru to come to an understanding… After all, if they were to stand about in the woods the entire story it would be rather lame… And we can only watch so much of Kagome's near-death experiences before we just yawn and leave (or at least, I know I would).

EXTENDED A/N: Erin just strangled me about fifteen minutes ago after dropping me off from the bar… I believe she said, "I mean it about killing you if you forget to update tonight"… Death threats work… Especially if they are actually able to be carried out. O.o; Also, I'm getting a new laptop in a couple of days (finally), Bob hasn't been working as well as he should, hence the reason why I haven't updated in a while. I'm very sorry, but this problem is almost taken care of.

HAPPINESS!!! My favorite online manga, 'The Way to Your Heart' (by: Emi), is off it's hiatus and back in motion::Does super happy dance:: So if there are any TWTYH fans out there reading this fiction, drop in and give a look at the two new pages she's submitted (they're both very well done)! For new readers, you can find it by going to: www. emi – art. com / twtyh / main. html (remove all spaces). I'm sure you'll love her work! . You can also find TWTYH by going threw yahoo and searching for: The Way to Your Heart – By Emi… What are you doing still reading this… Hurry and read chapter nine so you can check out Emi's FREE ONLINE MANGA!!! It's so unbelievably good and has a TRUE PROFESSIONAL QUALITY about it!

Disclaimer: The honorable Rumiko Takashi has informed me that, since I haven't yet claimed 'Inu-Yasha' as my own, I've earned a cookie. ::Eats cookie:: Mmmm…

Chapter Nine: An Agreement… Sort of.

Kagome cursed as she awoke, her head pounding and her throat aching as though a ten ton weight had been dropped upon it from a thirty story window. Her misty blue eyes clenched tightly against the pain as she bit back a frustrated moan… It seemed that every time she was going to wake up on her mission, she was doomed to greet pain and discomfort.

She slowly sat up, brushing strands of raven black hair from her face as she did so as her eyes opened and took in her surrounding. The night air was crisp and delightful to her senses as she breathed it in, enjoying the freshness, though hating the fact that it masked most of what she could see. Though she could feel Shippou's body curled around her hip, his hand making a fist in the sparkling white of her gown.

A few feet away she could see the glowing red embers of a dying fire, and knew that Shippou must have built it while she'd slept. The poor boy must have been frightened as he'd watched Sesshoumaru's attempt to kill her, and she was amazed that he hadn't succeeded; sure that her father had a hand in her recovery as well as Shippou's herbs and remedies.

Peering down at her clothes she fingered the self-sustaining cloth of her dress, grinning to herself in satisfaction… She'd always wanted clothes that would repair themselves as Inu-yasha's fire rat coat had, and now that she'd finally gotten it, she was pleased to know it was everything she'd hoped it would be… No more sitting by the fire, trying to mend near destroyed skirts and shirts in futile effort! No more strenuous washing in freezing streams!

Shaking her head she dropped the cloth and looked about the tiny make-shift camp sight, noticing a lump against the trunk of a tree… Apparently Shippou couldn't find it within himself to completely ignore the older demon, as he'd been propped up a tree… However, as his legs were spread open wide with one of his arms flung out, she doubted her son was anything gentle about it.

Good, it served him right…

If she had the strength, she would have seriously considered standing up and kicking the stupid, stubborn, aggressive, vicious, mean spirited demon in the head!

… Well, maybe not the head, but certainly the shins.

Sighing she shook her head, bringing slender fingers to rub against her temple in concentration annoyed with the way the entire event had gone. She shouldn't have gotten angry, though to be perfectly honest with herself, it had been justifiable.

Why was it that all the demons she'd ever come into contact with had an ego the size of the Himalayas?! Were they all programmed in youth to act superior towards humans? Even when they were nice to her, they still made sure to flaunt their power and physical strength.

If they weren't trying to kill her, they were trying to kidnap her; and if they weren't doing that, then they were belittling or making attempts to woo her. As though she were some kind of fascinating object that they wanted to take apart or own!

Growling she glared over towards the slouched form of Sesshoumaru, satisfied in the knowledge that she'd awoke first… He might be stronger, faster, and, as much as she hated to admit it, wiser; but at least she was able to relax with Shippou against her side, and watch the demon lords uncomfortable and awkward position.

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Sesshoumaru kept his eyes closed as he listened to the miko's breathing change it's deep calm pace of sleep, to shorter inhales at a faster rate. The stupid woman was probably staring at him by now, though he couldn't be sure without opening his eyes, and as the fierce pounding along the left side of his head didn't seem to lessen with time, he opted against that.

He hadn't felt in such pain since his mother was alive, punishing him for the lack of grace he'd had as a youth; or his weakness in strategy… While he'd disliked her in his younger years, he now knew she had been preparing him for the life he would one day be forced to lead. Giving him the strength to carry on his father's title with the same fierce protection, loyalty, and intelligence.

He mentally shook the thought off, pushing them back into a forgotten door and locking it shut once more, before he finally steeled himself and opened his eyes to look around the camp sight.

The kit had done rather well, though he must have forgotten to distinguish the fire before he fell asleep… And the fact that he'd took more concern with his care of the woman over the care of a demon lord spoke volumes of his loyalty and bravery…

Either that or the child was an idiot. Not that it mattered to him, of course, though he was curious about the loyalty the boy gave the human, rather then to the lord in which lands he was currently in.

This thought brought to mind that the woman had unofficially adopted the child demon as her own; much as he had done with Rin… Actually, the situation was exactly like his and Rins, if you switched the causing situations, of course.

The thought annoyed him slightly, causing a slight frown to appear as he closed the subject from thought. It served no purpose and lowered his stature to even be considering a connection, however slight, to a human… Especially a human female.

Instead, he straightened his body out, crossing his legs together as he used his arm to lever himself into a more comfortable position against the tree trunk. At his movement he heard the miko give off a low and unladylike grunt of displeasure, and a small smirk stretched his mouth ever so slightly.

So the idiotic female had finally realized he was awake? Though he was curious as to how she'd managed to swing the same amount of energy at him as his mother had… While it was possible she'd learned it in death, he seriously doubted his mother would lower herself to conversing with a human, much less training one.

He ignored further thought on the subject, brushing it aside for a moment as he lifted his head up to stare past the foliage and into the sky. The stares sparkled within the darkness, and the moon shone brightly, lighting the ground below it with a romantic glow. The only thing that marred his appreciation was the fact that his side ached terribly and he had a human wench staring at him as though she wished nothing but to walk over and plant her foot directly into his ribs.

He was never one to lie to himself, and the thought that she might actually be able to injure him, however minor a wound she inflected, wasn't something he could simply ignore…

True, her miko powers really had little effect on him, but the fact that they had any effect was something to interesting to ignore. If, for some unknown reason, he did need her in the near future, it would be more convenient if she were close at hand instead of half the land over.

He blinked, arching a perfectly sculpted eyebrow at himself, 'Am I actually considering allowing her into my castle?' he questioned himself, thinking on it for a moment… To tell the truth, it probably wouldn't be so terrible…

His castle was large enough, and she didn't have to stay near his rooms, so he wouldn't have to see her much. Perhaps he could even put her in a different wing, rather then the one he resided in. It could hardly seem rude, as she was only a mere human…

She would also be able to entertain Rin while he was busy or away on business, rather then have the child constantly at his side, interrupting his work with talk of flowers and other frivolous matters… It would probably be good for the girl to have another human female around as well.

He snapped his eyes towards Kagome, piercing her with his cool stare for a moment as he judged what he knew of her. Testing the pros against the cons of having her underfoot within his lands.

She stared back at him, never once lowering her eyes as a proper female should as she countered his gaze with a steady one of her own. It also seemed as though she was silently challenging him to something. However, this also weighed in her favor, as he felt that his ward would need strength of will in order to survive within his care.

He continued to stare at her for a moment before speaking, "You will not disrespect this Sesshoumaru, nor will you revert to your former way of dressing." He ordered her suddenly, pleased when she jumped, "Nor will you ignore the rules I place upon you while you reside within my castle."

He paused a moment as he waited for her to agree, amused as her eyes narrowed a fraction. Taking this as an acceptance of sort he continued, "You will also control your child. I will not have him destroying my castle, nor creating a negative influence upon my charge."

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"Shippou's not a negative influence." She snapped at him, causing him to arch his brow at her once more. "And he won't 'destroy' your castle! He's well behaved and smart as a whip." She notched her chin as she spoke, proudly smoothing Shippou's hair as he continued to sleep beside her.

Sesshoumaru merely stared at her as she finished, as though silently contradicting her. It infuriated her, "And I don't want you to be a negative influence on him." He continued his calm observation of her, and she felt a slight blush heat her cheeks at his intense stare, thankful that the darkness masked the fact and furious that her nervousness was easily shown threw the soft red stain across her cheeks.

Clearing her throat she nodded her head, "I'll agree not to disrespect you, and I won't start wearing my old school uniform around, either." She had to grin at this, 'Where would I even get another one?' she thought, holding back a laugh.

She could just picture herself popping up into her old school, which she would have already graduated from, and asking them if they would please allow her another chance at school, as her death had really only been an accident, and assuring them that it wouldn't happen again… Perhaps her grandfather could even come up with an excuse for her.

At this thought a soft chuckle did escape her, quickly turning into a solid laugh as she shook her head at the thought. 'He would be so happy to have his 'inspiration' return from death so that he could come up with even more fantastic stories!'

"What are you laughing at, human?" Sesshoumaru's voice sounded, causing her mind to snap back to their conversation. Her blush deepened slightly and she worried that, should it grow anymore, the demon lord might see.

Clearing her throat she shook her head, "Nothing, Sesshoumaru."

"Lord Sesshoumaru." He corrected, looking away from her as he gracefully stood himself up, returning his eyes to her after a moment, "It is time for us to leave."

Kagome gaped at him, "Are you serious?!" she yelped, "It's got to be past midnight and Shippou's sleeping!" as though to prove her point the young boy suddenly let out a loud snort of laughter that quickly ended in a mumbled 'stupid tree'… If it had been another time and with another person, she probably would have laughed.

She gulped when he stared down at her, "I wish to be at the castle before day break." He turned away from her and began walking in the castles direction, leaving her to silently curse at him. She slowly pushed herself up, a moan of discomfort held back as her stiff neck bent while she picked everything up and shoved it all in the bag as quickly as she could.

Afterwards she gently scooped the still sleeping child into her arms and followed in Sesshoumaru's direction, thankful that his silver hair reflected the moon's light. Otherwise the stupid man would have disappeared completely, and she'd have been left to track his aura.

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Authors Note: All right, I would just like everyone to know that I'm splitting my time between various things, such as Gaia (new account name: LasakoDarkshi, should you wish to look me up I love profile comments and donators!!! If you donate, I'll make it up to you! .), Alter Aeon (look me up as 'Sango') and (of course), fanfiction… This all happens within a three-hour time limit… All the rest of my time is dedicated to my daughter. .; Right now, I'm looking for a "Card Shark Visor", "Coco Kitty", and an "Angelic Bracelet", I'll take gold, tickets, and anything else you'd like to give!

I had the Coco Kitty almost bought before I got hacked, and I'll take gold towards donations as well! I could skip the Angelic Bracelet and just use a regular golden bracelet, but I REALLY need Coco and the visor.

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT ALL CHARACTERS ADDED TO STORY WILL NOT BE A LARGE PART OF THE STORY!!! But they will have a lot to do with the chapter that they are in, as I've got plenty of roles for people to fill. ::Had a stroke of creativity::

Gaia Account: LasakoDarksh

: Wanted :

Card Shark Visor (Questing)

Coco Kitty (Questing)

Dark Halo (I've always wanted one… All most had it too… However, I don't actually need it… Just want it really badly. ::Sigh::)

Gold and tickets towards wish list items (Always accepted!)

Myspace Account: Lasako

YIM Account: flaminglasako (Please don't IM me with questions about the future plot, I refuse to indulge my readers with any hints as to what's going to happen next... Because I'm evil that way. .)

Don't forget to add me to your friends lists!!! . It would thrill me to death to hear from any of you!