Someone to Protect

Summary: The question burned in his mind, driving him but had no importance. Just what did this girl really mean to him? Sesshomaru oneshot.

Disclaimer: I don't own anything from Inuyasha. I'm borrowing some of the characters!

A/N: This is my first Inuyasha fanfic. I was watching the third movie (Swords of an Honorable Ruler) and I had this idea. This is kind of like the prologue to another story I'm writing, so read this one first!

"Tell me Sesshomaru. Have you someone... to protect?"

'I have no one to protect, Father.' Sesshomaru thought, looking out at the full moon that was half covered by clouds that hung over the calm lake. 'Nor will I ever need to.' His eyes narrowed, frustrated that he couldn't get the question out of his mind. "Curse you, Father." he muttered. Then, he turned to look at the people behind him.

His eyes softened slightly when they landed on the two that were asleep farther down on the hill. There was the young human girl named Rin, who idolized him, and the demon Master Jaken. They were the reason that he stopped for the night. Sesshomaru knew that he could have kept going to hunt for the demon they were tracking, but they were exhausted. He didn't want to push them.

But why did he care? He didn't care about them before, or at least, he didn't think so.

Growling with frustration, Sesshomaru sat down on the grass, his eyes on the moon. Why was he double-checking himself? Why was a question from his dead father bothering him? His mind was made up, and he wasn't going to change it. There was no one he had to protect.

Then, he gasped when he heard quiet crying. He looked behind him and saw that Rin was on her knees, using one of her small hands to wipe away the tears that were falling from her eyes. "Rin?" he asked, surprised. "Why are you awake?"

Rin looked up at him with tear-filled eyes. "Lord Sesshomaru!" she cried, getting to her feet and running up the hill to him. When she reached him, she hugged him tightly. Shocked, Sesshomaru lightly patted her on the head.

"What's wrong, Rin?" he asked.

Rin buried her face into his chest as she continued to cry. "I had a bad dream." she muttered, really shaken.

"About what?" Sesshomaru asked, looking down on her.

Rin looked up at him, clinging tightly to him. "You were killed by the demon we're hunting." she told him in a quiet voice. "You were protecting me, and…" She couldn't finish.

Sesshomaru's expression showed surprise when he heard her words, but his eyes softened when that was replaced with a kind smile. "That's not going to happen." he reassured her, pulling her onto his lap. "I will protect you, Rin, but I'm not going to be dying anytime soon. Don't worry."

Seeming to feel better, Rin smiled and closed her eyes as she snuggled close to him, feeling comfortable in his arms. "Thank you, Lord Sesshomaru." she muttered before she closed her eyes. "You're the… greatest…" Then, she was asleep.

Sesshomaru looked down on the young girl sleeping in his arms, feeling confused. Why was she important to him? Did he almost consider this human child… a daughter? An heir? Despite himself, the demon couldn't help but smile as he watched her sleep. He had grown attached to Rin as they hunted down the demon that haunted her dreams together, and he didn't know what he would do if something happened to her. But he couldn't help but think that this dream might signal that they were getting close to their target…

Carefully getting to his feet so that he wouldn't wake Rin, Sesshomaru walked back over to where Master Jaken was sleeping. Even though the little demon was annoying, he had his moments where he was useful. Gently setting Rin back on her pillow, Sesshomaru noticed that Jaken had taken her blanket in his sleep. The demon looked around in his own bag and pulled out his blanket, laying it over the girl. "I'm not going to be getting any sleep tonight." he muttered to himself.

Then, making sure that they were both sleeping peacefully, Sesshomaru got to his feet and walked back up the hill and stood facing the lake, his eyes on the full moon. It was now fully visible, all of the night clouds gone. As he continued to look at it, he could almost see is father's face reflected in it.

"Do you have someone… to protect?"

'Inuyasha has someone that he wants to protect… that girl, Kagome.' Sesshomaru thought. 'I always thought that caring for someone and wanting to protect them from any danger was a sign of weakness. But… you were right all along, Father. Now… I have someone that I want to protect, too.'

A/N: Hope you liked it! Remember, this story is like the prologue to another one that I'm writing called What Matters Most. Here's a bit of a sneak peek!

Kotoko smirked. "Now you're impressed?" she replied. "It's a little too late for that. I wanted to hear those words from you years ago. You also seem to be weaker than I remember…"

Rin's fear instantly turned to anger. "Lord Sesshomaru is not weak!" she snapped.

Sesshomaru looked back at her, cringing when one of Kotoko's talons cut his neck slightly. "Rin, stay out of this!" he told her. "Run! You and Jaken must get out of here!"

Rin looked down at the demon, tears filling her eyes as she began to mutter, "Lord Sesshomaru…"