I no way do I own anything you recognize, and in fact you might get mad at me for not recognizing things- considering it OOC or a blatant manipulation…I still don't make any money off of it.

.X..

Hiei growled out from behind his wards as he watched them shove the struggling woman into the next warded cell. Quietly he was able to observe them taunt her; only to have her lips firm, her chin rise up, and her eyes solidify and narrow as if she was still the one with the upper hand. The pushed her already bruised form around a bit, and then as if by silent summons all turned to leave the dungeons at the same time.

She made no sound.

It had been weeks since she had entered their special area of the prison, reserved for those of substantial power who had only been subdued by some odd luck. Randomly she would be removed from the dungeon to come back later stumbling and struggling and more blue. But she never came back unconscious or crying or broken.

It came to be that they gave up on removing her while they interrogated her. And Hiei had to watch from his prison without the ability to turn his head away when they tried everything; only for her to firm her mouth and set her chin and then her eyes to become hard granite.

Hiei felt the old chains bite into him as he shifted to see, once again, exactly how the wards were modified to contain him, and he caught sight of the woman staring off into nothing- yet she did it so intensely he thought she was seeing something no one else could. Hiei had to wonder if this was how she still remained silent after the many times the guards would come in- obviously trying vigorously to pry information out of her.

And she never broke, never crumbled or wept or passed out.

She remained stubbornly accepting of her circumstance, and Hiei couldn't help but admire that in a human female. Strange as she was a cell mate she brought this contrast of regality even in her rags and filthy prison. Someone like her would be an honor to know compared to the numbskulls that had caught him with underhanded tactics while he was patrolling.

Hiei jerked to a more alert position, straining against his warded chains with a snarl as the door was thrust open and laughing guards came in, some looking almost pathetically drunk as they stumbled through with only the light of one torch in a wavering hand. His eyes blazed with indignation as the woman was roughly jolted from her sleep and glared at them stumbling to her cell.

The iron doors were opened with a protesting creak, and the woman stood with her back straight as one slurred a laugh and reached out a hand to her.

He proceeded no further as she raised her hands despite the heavy chain and grasped his wrist, the bitter-sweet smell of burning flesh rising as the lady and the guard cried out from her power and the wards reaction to it.

The other guards were startled into sobriety as they backed out of the cell, the injured male stumbling out as he was shoved roughly by the female. Hiei stared blankly as she hissed and raised her burnt hands- a clear warning that to approach her so crassly again would result in worse fates- no matter how much harm she brought to herself.

She would not be shamed.

The doors slammed open and the guards struggled in as light flooded the lowest dungeon and Hiei and the woman were forced alert and wary. The woman gasped as the guards laughed and pulled the form between them into their line of sight.

The child had wide teary green eyes that defiantly glared as he twisted his small body and snapped his tail at their ankles. One callous guard struck him across his face and the miko cried out, her chains loudly jarring as she strained to get as close to the child as possible.

Hiei struggled further as well, reacting to her as she'd never seemed so desperate and he couldn't help but worry over her new disposition.

The child stilled with wide eyes as he caught sight of the subdued woman, and then tears of another sort came to his eyes as he renewed his struggles- this time in an attempt to get closer to her.

The guards laughed lightly and tightened their grips, causing the boy kit to cry out and whimper and the woman to jerk at her chains and cry in response.

"Seems we discovered a little orphan sniffing around the perimeter," he sneered with yellow teeth, "isn't this just perfect miko?"

Hiei stiffened and craned his neck slightly, trying to arrange himself so he could watch everyone without catching their attention.

"Please…" Whispered the woman as her eyes softened and she reached out a hand to the child.

The guard cackled and roughly backhanded the boy child, green eyes dulling and neck snapping as the woman cried out harshly and threw herself at the group only to be jerked forcefully by the chains and have her back twisted painfully before she fell and whimpered.

The child sniffled: "okaa-san."

Hiei felt his whole body jerk involuntarily at the childish whimper, and he hissed between his fangs as the head guard started laughing harder as he held his abdomen. "This is priceless! The miko who could never get things right"– he laughed again, spluttering and shaking as he jeered -"actually started to care for an orphan kit?"

The surrounding guards tittered as the kit was jerked up roughly by his hair, the woman screaming out and crying "Shippou! No! Please let him go, please let him go."

Hiei growled as they only taunted the miko further by playing with her loved one, pulling him this way and that in a pseudo imitation of a playing kit as they laughed and she cried.

The kokitsune wept and struggled, and received more bruises.

And this continued until the miko let out a heart wrenching cry and fell to her knees.

"Please, please…"her eyes closed before they opened, red and wet and focused nowhere but her son. "Let me take him, please let him go…"

The guards laughed and pushed the kit closer to the cell, holding him back cruelly as he was so close and yet still had to strain the small distance to be even closer.

They taunted her with the child many more times after that, and Hiei found that – though before he could hold stoic because the strong woman did so – to see her so broken by their cruelty to a demon child fanned his ire.

She still never broke, never confessed the knowledge they so sought, and the child and her always locked eyes and calmed; weeping only when they were forced to look away or were dragged apart from each other.

Hiei growled as he thought in the dark dampness of the night.

If only his mother had been so attached to him and Kurama's ningen pseudo-mother showed enough stability to her son for him to confess and create such a bond. His cell mate was a miko, one sent to threaten the youkai race, and yet she'd adopted and loved a youkai child. Hiei wondered if she was so accepting of all of them, or if she had come unto the child in odd circumstance.

He sighed and shifted, his chains making soft noises in response.

"Youkai-san?"

"Hn." He responded to the soft inquiry.

There was an even softer release of breath. "I want him to be safe." A beat of her heart, loud and thudding and having him straighten with the ominous foreboding that crept into his heart. "you'll ensure this for me?" and then "Please?" in a word so faint it was but breath coming from her lips followed by a stilted sob.

Hiei agreed and then it was silent again.

The next occasion where the guards dragged in her son came some time after that. They asked her the usual questions that she wouldn't answer, played with her mind, threatened her, and then went to rough up her son.

But it was not to be so this time, and Hiei staggered back into his grimy cell wall when her powers rose up in vengeance and she ignored them, burning her flesh and stinging his nose. Her powers screamed along the makai, a rushing in his ears and blinding light across his being as the guards started yelling, the child started crying for his mother, and the lady wept and raged against the guards still holding her beloved son.

Hiei struggled to a steadier position against the flux of her power, and looked up only to see her ignite the makai metal of her cage and rush to her son and his captors. He could clearly see her powers burning at her, the tears on her face that looked to be more of determination to save her son, and the way that the purity calmed the child and seemed to cradle him instead of inflicting harm upon him.

His eyes widened with realization.

He roared.

And he finished it.

He continued running with the weeping woman in his arms, holding her while the kitsune rested upon her breast with only the occasional whimper. She wouldn't stop stroking his auburn hair.

Hiei growled as he went through an area with a certain demonic signature and the miko sighed and settled quietly in his arms. He raised an eyebrow at her only to receive a smile and her head falling against his shoulder as she drifted into the pain.

He sped up.

Reikai was in a tizzy, Hiei knew it was so because he could feel his connection with Kurama reestablished and the frantic pressure of his fox friend to come back into contact.

He ignored it.

He had some things to take care of.

The safe haven he guarded jealously with his aura was perfect for the three of them, and Hiei was proud to watch the kit become rambunctious and heal before his very eyes with the help of his mother.

He turned calculating red eyes upon her, making sure she was gaining back her weight and sensing if her emotions had taken a down turn- but it was all fine.

He had desperately tried everything he could to heal her from the wounds inflicted upon herself in her rage, and it was an emotion very foreign to him and not entirely welcome.

He much preferred the pride of watching her care for her son and smile, the rush of belonging when she prepared a meal for them and softly thanked him for providing the meat or the heady rush of strength and acceptance that came from their new bond as siblings.

Nothing had worked to revive her and heal her, and his dragon and his jagan and even his soul had risen up against what seemed to be the inevitable- her self-inflicted death to save her son and in some strange way to protect her quiet and taciturn cell-mate of an uncertain length of time.

Hiei owed her a debt; Hiei appreciated her position as a mother to a demon child not of her womb and respected her conviction; Hiei knew she had no where else to go.

…he wouldn't let another child lose their mother when she was so worthy of the role.

Kurama finally found him when he was patrolling his claimed area, and the kitsune stopped to regard him with the curious stilted air of someone who really wanted to be welcomed but knew he wasn't supposed to be near for some reason.

"Koenma is getting frantic."

Hiei nodded his head, eyes darting around for the others or some demon after the powerful sibling he'd acquired.

Kurama stared at him quietly. "Yukina and I are worried."

Hiei stiffened. "I have some things to do."

They regarded each other solemnly before Kurama conceded and with a nod of his head was gone.

Hiei waited until even their mental connection was strained by distance before he returned to Shippou and Kagome.

He never did figure out how it came about, but he knew about Kagome and she knew about him. And this encouraged her to encourage him and this came about.

He regarded Yukina strongly as she stared at him in wonder, and then she smiled and a tear gem fell before she was in his startled arms and laughing. He settled and pulled her closer to him, bowing his head to hers as he closed his eyes and spread out his senses to his soul sibling and his blood sibling in front of him.

Kagome's soul vibrated with joy.

He didn't know how she had convinced him, but she seemed to understand things from a different perspective. Emphasizing that Yukina deserved to know, and that if she found out later she would think he was ashamed of her and not the other way around. She would think that he deemed her an unsatisfactory sister and decided to ignore their bond, that he thought she would react harshly and shame her brother…that she was fearing rejection just as he was, and she didn't deserve to feel it so he should protect her the right way and just get off his ass to confess.

When he asked she only told him that she simply knew these things- with a curious light to her eyes...he didn't ask any further.

Kurama tilted his head against the solid tree beside him, and his green eyes glazed over with cunning as he smiled at Hiei. The fire apparition snorted, and the fox chuckled in response before stretching and cracking his spine.

"Yukina seems to be in a buoyant mood."

Hiei smirked and nodded his head. "Yukina is one apt at expressing the emotion."

Kurama sighed and shook his head in silent reply. But he smiled and then shifted the subject, "One has to wonder how her brother worked up the courage to face his demons...?"

Hiei snorted again and then was gone.

He growled and tugged on the hand of his soul-sib as he walked straight and she tried not to cower away from their pressing gazes.

Koenma had grown paranoid of his prolonged absence; though Hiei knew the fox hadn't been the one to rat him in. He sighed because it was just like Reikai to pull such a stunt. He smirked because at least the brat and the entourage were surprised at what their trap had sprung.

Hiei slowly pulled Kagome away from his back, the kit clinging to her with a frizzed tail as his wild eyes glanced around.

Hiei guessed his eyes would have been too if he were an orphan kit suddenly pulled into a portal after the experience of the rebel group and his family's torture, and he applauded the child for his guard when a shadow shifted and Kurama stepped out with a blank face.

The strangers regarded each other strongly before Kagome straightened with a breath and narrowed her eyes, simultaneously drawing her kit closer and bringing herself to Hiei's side.

He smirked with pride.

Koenma sputtered and gaped, his mouth opening and closing as his hands flayed about in confusion.

Hiei scoffed and sneered and Kagome sniffed before the quiet cough of the kit broke the silence and Kurama had to hide his laugh politely behind his hand.

Kagome grinned and then threw up her head proudly, standing by him even when Koenma started raging and the questions were shouted at them and the general fuss that arose from their unexpected addition.

Hiei let out his breath and settled next to his soul sib, felt his blood sister calmly take her place beside him, and then Kurama settle and smile and brush a feeling of congratulations along their bond.

Koenma kept on spluttering.

Hiei leaned against the trunk of his tree as he watched his siblings play games with the kitsune child, and glanced to the side only when Kurama landed gracefully on his claimed branch with an indulgent look on his face.

"Amazing how you achieved what you never thought possible."

Hiei snorted at his friend's flowery way of phrasing, though he couldn't help but understand it was his way of protecting his interests from any listeners. So he shook his head and then narrowed his eyes as he watched the strange light in his partner's eyes as he watched his siblings.

Hiei had never seen Kurama look like that before.

He turned to watch the females and kit as well; and then he smirked, closed his eyes, and tilted his head down to rest as he leaned back against the trunk of the tree.

It could work out.

Hiei smiled from his seat in the shadows, watching the ever resourceful Youko sidle up to his soul-sib and then offer her a flower from nowhere. Kagome blushed, and her kit giggled with a shake of his fluffy tail before he was off to find Yukina after a wink to Hiei.

The fire demon let out a chuckle and turned his head away, only listening to the sound of Kurama's low murmur as he asked his soul-sib to agree to his suit and then Kagome's musical reply as she stammered and then accepted.

He didn't need to look to know that Kagome's scarred hand was resting between Kurama's own as his thumb rubbed over he wrist, that Kagome's blush was pink and rosy with pleasure and mayhap confusion because she still didn't understand her worth, that the kitsune was smiling his charming smile with open eyes because this one was sincere (and if it wasn't Hiei would be there with his sword), Kagome would try to look away and Kurama would gently guide her chin until she was looking straight into his eyes, and everything would be fine after a while.

It was something the both of them deserved.

Kagome needed a man who was strong enough to fight for her and smart enough to let her fight some of her battles on her own- just there to catch her when she felled herself because of past experiences that had shifted her confidence. Kurama needed a woman that understood demon ways and actually welcomed them, invited him in with welcome arms and a warm smile while laughing at the antics of kitsune in general.

Hiei just acquired another addition to his family.

The sudden rise of content in the auras of his chosen siblings made him open his eyes and smile, and then he stood and cracked his neck before he walked off to talk to Yukina.

The kit would get the loving family he needed and wished for.

The parents deserved the responsibility of a child, one they would meet with fervor and love.

And Hiei was apparently a part of this whole wonderful mess.

He closed his eyes and smiled as Yukina waved happily from her seat in the forest, little chickadees chirping joyfully as they chased her fingers through the air as Shippou laughed and chased them.

Hiei's family was just fine, even raised as it was from such strange allies.

A miko with a kitsune child, an avatar Youko, the pure ice maiden, and he the hybrid of fire and ice so forbidden from the pleasures of home and hearth…but all accepted.

He could live with that.

Author's Notes:

How I pictured Hiei is not necessarily my own personality, so excuse me if he's rather inconsistent. But I do believe he's more impressed by actions than anything (like Yusuke trusting him first) so yes, I believe this is a realistic plot development that supports Hiei gaining his family.