Disclaimer: Don't own. Don't sue.
AN: Yeah, I know I should be updating my other two. This will be a real quick chapter, and then I'll get right on that. I've hit somewhat of a block with them (as in – I don't feel like writing) so I'm gonna force myself to put up another chapter on Even Me. This is a completely new story. Yes, the two main characters are Sesshoumaru and Kagome. No, this is not a romance. Don't ask for one.
She was so tired.
The battle was finally over, but it came at too high a price. Out of all of them, the only ones left standing were her, Inuyasha and Kikyou. Not even Kouga had survived Naraku's wrath.
But it was over; Naraku was dead – his incarnations were dead. She should have been elated. All she could feel was exhaustion and loneliness. She was a social creature, and the loss of her friends – the ones she had depended on for so long – tore her heart in two. He was also hurting; they were his friends as well, but he went to Kikyou for comfort.
That hurt nearly as bad, knowing that she was so easily replaced now that the Shikon no Tama had been completed. She knew she should go home and never come back, but he held her here as surely as if he had leashed her. She was loyal – to a fault.
One day she would break free of him.
A familiar tingling sensation started at the base of her neck, alerting her to the presence of a youkai. In a flash, she spun around, drawing and aiming an arrow with perfect ease. She could hardly see in the torrential downpour, but she didn't need to in order to hit the youkai.
"Who are you?" she called out. "Show yourself!"
Suddenly he was there, materializing from the rain like an angel of darkness. She didn't lower her weapon; he had tried to kill her far too many times in the past for her to trust him. He didn't show any emotion when he finally spoke.
"I have no desire to harm you for now, miko."
"At least you're honest about it." she muttered, and she lowered the bow. "Why are you here?" Her voice was nearly as cold as his.
"When a normally well-protected miko is found so far from her hanyou in the middle of a thunderstorm, it piques this Sesshoumaru's curiosity." His gold eyes bored into hers. The intensity of his stare should have made her squirm, but it didn't. There was no room in her for fear.
"He's not my hanyou." she said quietly. She closed her eyes and tilted her head up, letting the rain cascade down her face. "I – I'm trying to free myself from him."
A silence descended between them, filled only by the pouring rain. Kagome was the one to break it, feeling the need to put a reason behind her statement. "They're gone. He went to her, not me. I have no reason to stay, but I can't leave. I need to leave."
While on of his questions had been answered, the miko's reasoning raised a whole new set of them. He bit them back, not wanting to seem like he cared. "How long will you remain out here?"
Kagome shrugged. 'However long it takes."
It wasn't much of an answer, but Sesshoumaru accepted it. She would go back when she was ready to, and not before.
She was an enigma to him, unfamiliar, yet enticing. There was on emotion he had never been able to suppress, and that was his curiosity. He had always been an inquisitive individual, even though he learned early on not to let it show. Now this girl – his brother's miko, no less – had captured his interest, and he was unsure as to how to get the information he wanted.
They stood in silence until the rain slowed to a drizzle. Kagome shivered in the cool night air. She was thoroughly soaked to the bone, but she honestly didn't care. The biting cold matched how cold she felt.
"I should go back." she whispered, reluctant to break the silence. "I need to dry off. Good-bye, Sesshoumaru." She turned and headed back to the village, leaving the taiyoukai standing alone under the trees. He needed to get back to Rin; kami knew Jaken couldn't take care of the girl for longer than five minutes, but he waited until his senses told him Kagome had gotten out of the woods before turning to leave.
Until we meet again, little miko.
AN: Whaddya think? This is just the first chapter – they're all gonna be pretty short, but there's gonna be a lot of them. Review please!