Disclaimer: I hereby disclaim all rights and responsibilities for the characters in this quick bit of mischief… especially for the monk who's usually a little quicker on the uptake. A nod of recognition is bent towards Rumiko Takahashi for her creative prowess.

Dedication: For Ku-kun. I often think the Scamp shines brightest when he's trying to make you smile. Your laughter is our great delight.

This oneshot first appeared on June 12, 2007.



The heat of the day was taking its toll on the straggling line of road-weary travelers. Everyone's energy was flagging in the heavy air that presaged a storm, but Inuyasha refused to stop and rest until they reached a more defensible position. He urged his little pack onwards, but set an easy pace as he trudged slowly in the lead, talking in low tones with Miroku.

Sesshoumaru strode quietly at the rear of the entourage, keeping his own thoughts company while unobtrusively ensuring his young charge's safety. He watched with a growing sense of dissatisfaction as Rin began to tire. She'd long since stopped chasing after flowers, and now her steps dragged listlessly. When the girl's chatter subsided into quiet humming, and humming lapsed into uncharacteristic silence, Sesshoumaru knew something must be done.

In the midst of his ruminations, Sesshoumaru watched the small kitsune trot to his brother's miko and hold out his arms in a silent plea, begging for a ride. The young woman scooped the kit up, and before long the little redhead's eyes had closed in contentment as he drowsed against her shoulder. It was exactly what Rin needed, but that service was usually entrusted to Ah-Un, who was not present. He could not carry the child himself. That only leaves…

With a burst of speed that defied comprehension, Sesshoumaru set himself on the path in front of Inuyasha and Miroku, gazing down his nose in haughty dignity. The hanyou's hand moved to Tetsusaiga as he looked about for some sign of danger, frowning when no apparent threat presented itself. "You got somethin' to say?" Inuyasha asked gruffly as the rest of their group came to a standstill before the taiyoukai. All eyes were fastened on him with varying degrees of surprise and interest. Sesshoumaru rarely said anything, so they were understandably curious to hear his explanation for the halt.

Ignoring the rest, Sesshoumaru pinned Miroku with a stern gaze. The monk, who'd leaned casually against his shakujou the moment they'd stopped, straightened attentively. "Yes, Sesshoumaru-sama?" he responded, answering an unspoken call.

"You will carry Rin."

Turning, Miroku spotted Sesshoumaru's bedraggled young charge, his eyes softening at her wilted state. "Of course," he murmured. He took a half step in Rin's direction, only to be brought up short by a muffled titter. Miroku looked in perplexity at Sango and Kagome, who were exchanging glances, eyes bright with laughter. When he raised a questioning brow at them, both broke down into fits of helpless giggling.

Looking from one to the other with a bemused half-smile, Miroku shook his head in confusion. "Ladies?" he asked, uncertain what had set them off. He glanced over his shoulder at Inuyasha, who sported a knowing smirk. Apparently I missed the joke. Miroku crouched down, offering his free arm to Rin, who willingly hugged the monk around his neck so he could pull her up onto his hip.

The action only sent the girls into a fresh round of merriment, which set Sesshoumaru on edge. His brows puckered slightly in annoyance and he sent a fierce look in his half-brother's direction. The hanyou caught the cold stare, and waved at Kagome and Sango, gesturing for them to calm down. "They're not makin' fun of you, Sesshoumaru. It's him," Inuyasha assured the taiyoukai, pointing at Miroku.

Miroku was mystified, "Perhaps you would be so kind as to explain?"

Inuyasha chuckled and crossed his arms over his chest. "I'm kinda surprised you didn't catch it, houshi," he said, a twinkle in his eye. "You're usually the quick one."

Stumped, the monk gave an easygoing shrug. "Enlighten me."

"Well, it's like this," the hanyou said seriously, enjoying the moment of suspense. "If I'm not mistaken, my bastard of a brother here just asked you to bear his child for him."


End Note: This oneshot was written because I thought it would make you smile. There! How's that for a reason? As a side benefit, it also fulfills a portion of my claim at the Live Journal community iy(underscore)no(underscore)kakera, where I marked the Sesshoumaru & Miroku platonic pairing as my own. 634 words