Okay, so here is another little Nar/Kag shorty. I know you're going to read this and think, 'Hmm… sounds somewhat like 'Pitifully Hopeful' if you ask me.' I realize that, but I couldn't not write this. It was just jumping around in the back of my mind and wouldn't leave me alone until I put it on paper… err computer. Whatever.
I'm not sure why I like writing Nar/Kag angst… it just seems so appropriate. I mean, in my opinion, it is very hard to write a believable Naraku/ Kagome pairing that's more than a oneshot. I have seen people do it, this much is true, but I just don't have the patience or the creativity at the moment to attempt one. It's either got to be angsty… or a scandalous love affair that no one must know about. And don't say, 'That would never happen,' because it could. Kagome could be like me and have a thing for bad boys. ;P I highly doubt it, however. Geesh… but, since I'll never be able to jump his bones, I simply live out my fantasies through Kagome. Is that so wrong? What? It is…? Okay then…
Anyways, here it is…
Disclaimer: I do not own Inuyasha.
Happily Ever After
"Awake, are you?"
A slender figure stirred; cringing away from the ominous voice that spoke to her through the dark. Tucking her willowy legs beneath her slight form, she backed herself into the corner; terror consuming her as the sound of rustling silk permeated the inky blackness. A scraping noise accompanied the crinkle of fabric, and in an instant the room was lit by the dim flame of an oil lamp. Frightened eyes darted quickly away from the individual holding it.
Smiling as he took in her trembling form, the young male set the lantern along the window ledge, leaning his broad back against the wall. The eerie light cast by the flickering lamp washed over his captive's minuscule frame, revealing her lovely features to his greedy eyes. Mussed raven locks spilled over smooth, naked shoulders, draping over her pert breasts like a veil. Her legs, through the smudges of dirt and blood, were creamy and long, curled under her like a newborn babe. Her form was lean and curvaceous, though still slightly underdeveloped. And her eyes, oh, her eyes; those crystal orbs that she tried so desperately to hide from him; they were astounding. Black, sooty lashes clenched tightly, blocking his view of twin pools of azure, slivers of silver winding their way through the precious gems. Yet… he did not need to see them. They were his eyes now, and he had memorized every fluctuation in color, every fleck and line… He had gazed into those same eyes every night for the past year; his blood growing hot as they welled with fear and desperation. Those eyes were his true source of power, because they revealed her weakness.
She squeaked when he moved, the sound helpless as she peered through one eye to watch his movements. He was sliding one powerful leg upward, bending it at the knee so that he might lay his arm casually against it. His silhouette was menacing against the faint light of the oil lamp, only a few features visible in the near nonexistent glow. His gaze was upon her; those sinful, bloody rubies burning a path straight into her tattered heart. He smiled at her then, his teeth flashing in the darkness, and she averted her gaze. The memory of those evil, porcelain lips as they pulled back into a sinister grin would always be one of the things she feared most. That smile… was always accompanied by pain.
"Would you like to hear a story?" he inquired softly as he regarded her.
As always, she did not respond, and as always, he continued.
"Once upon a time there was a beautiful young girl; a miko whose power remained undiscovered. Little did she know that deep within her flesh a legendary gem was buried, a stone with the power to grant its keeper any wish they desired. The Shikon-no-tama."
He saw her flinch in her corner, the manacles that adorned her tiny ankles clanking as her legs began to quiver.
"Then, one day, she was taken from her home and thrown into a time not her own. There she found a boy who had been placed under a spell, one cast by the priestess she had been reincarnated from centuries back. The jewel that had been hidden inside of her pure, untainted body was discovered, and ripped from its hiding place by a voracious demon that lusted for its power. In order to save not only herself, but the residents of a local village, she freed the boy from his prison, and the boy was victorious."
"However, as it turned out, this young male was yet another demon who sought the power of the Shikon-no-tama, and intended on killing the girl to obtain what he required. An elderly priestess from the village, who was the sister of the miko who sealed him fifty years prior, was able to subdue him using a peculiar spell, one that responded only to the young girl. With this new tool keeping him under its control, the boy was forced to remain docile, until the opportunity he needed arose."
"He had no such luck, however, for another demon had managed to steal the jewel, and during their attempts to retrieve it, the priestess shattered the Shikon, and the shards were scattered across the land."
"And so, a pact was formed, and the duo set out to recover the lost fragments. Out of the many demons and monsters that hunted for the jewel, a witch named Urasue was one of their most memorable foes. The old sorceress stole the ashes of the priestess who had sealed the boy away, and with them, she managed to resurrect the body of the fallen miko. With her, the witch planned on collecting the shards of the Shikon so that she might be granted eternal life and infinite power."
"The witch soon discovered that in order for the corpse to be reborn, her soul was needed… a soul that was held within her reincarnation, the girl from another time. The young maiden was kidnapped, and during the struggle for her soul, an important and crushing discovery was made. This dead priestess, the woman who had cast the spell on the demon-boy, was his past lover. Though most of her soul was recovered, a small portion remained inside the golem, allowing it to remain in the world of the living. It did not take long for the young priestess to realize that the boy, whom she had begun to feel deeply for, still cared for the undead miko."
A moth fluttered in frantic circles around the oil lamp, its dusty wings beating furiously as it attempted to reach the source of the light. Quicker than the strike of a venomous serpent, the young man captured the tiny, winged insect in one of his large, clawed hands. Holding it precariously by the legs, he watched with sadistic pleasure as it tried in vain to free itself.
"And so," he continued, "the young priestess was trapped in a tragic tale of love, betrayal, and time. While her feelings for the young demon-boy remained unnoticed, the undead miko, who on many occasions had attempted to kill them, became the center of his attention. Still she stayed with him and searched for the jewel shards, despite the fact that, as time went by, her heart began to fall apart, piece by piece."
Grasping a single wing between calloused fingertips, he plucked the velvety appendage from its socket, snickering as the little creature flailed wildly in his grip.
"Living in the other woman's shadow quickly broke the girl's spirit, though she continued to wear a smile."
The other wing was detached, and the insect was dropped to the floor, where it thrashed madly in an attempt to move.
"His negligence crushed her, and she knew that, no matter how she tried, he would never love her as he did his past lover."
A solid fist met the wooden floor with a deafening 'thud', and the fearful young woman jumped. Lifting his hand, the black-haired male expected the remnants of the moth that were now smeared on the side of his palm. Brushing the small mess on his haori, he cast an amused glance at his captive before continuing.
"As she traveled with the demon-boy, she learned that his affair with the young priestess fifty years ago had been ended due to treachery, and because of that mishap, the undead miko roamed the earth a hate filled corpse, bent on revenge."
The tear that slid down her cheek did not go unnoticed by the speaker, and he rose. Long legs carried him across the room in a few, fluid strides, and he knelt before her shivering form with a look of mock tenderness painting his features. He beckoned her to come forward with a gentle curl of the finger, and when she made to move to budge he gripped the chains that bound her ankles and yanked her toward him. Fisting a hand into her tousled midnight strands, he pulled her face level with his and cooed, "Such a tragic tale, don't you think so?"
Pressing a finger to her lips, he hushed her with a soft reprimand, "But this story is not yet done, my dear, oh no."
It was with little difficulty that he lifted her slight figure from the floor and placed her in his lap, combing back her unruly bangs and raking a jagged claw under her chin, forcing her to meet his gaze. That terror was there, the fear that he loved so much, and he kissed her gently on the nose.
"Their search for the remainder of the Shikon fragments led them to meet many new allies. A demon slayer whose village was destroyed. A monk with a terrible curse placed upon his family. A demon child whose mother and father had been slaughtered. Together they searched for the Shikon-no-tama, facing demons and monsters and growing stronger with each battle."
"During this journey, they made many enemies as well, but none as great a threat as the half-demon who clad himself in the skin of a baboon. It was this hanyou who was the cause of so much of their distress, for not only did he destroy all who interfered with his attempts at gaining the Shikon shards, but his sinister nature was the reason for most of their suffering. It was he who decimated the slayer's village and murdered her family. It was he who placed the curse on the monk's ancestors. It was he who tricked the demon-boy and undead priestess into believing they betrayed one another ages ago. He was the source of their heartache."
"The search for the jewel became a constant battle with this demon, and it was only a matter of time before all of the fragments were collected, and the two groups faced off in the ultimate battle."
She squeezed her eyes shut tightly, hoping to block out the sickening sound of his voice. When a rich chuckle met her actions, she shuddered, trying her best to ignore the way the hard body beneath her vibrated along with the sound.
A cold hand gripped her chin, and a scolding voice whispered in her ear, "Now, now, my dear, it's rude to ignore someone when they are speaking to you. Pay attention, this is the best part of the story."
When the fidgety young female in his arms finally obeyed, her eyed were filled to the brim with unshed tears, the watery diamonds gathering along her lower lids before spilling down rosy, porcelain cheeks. Tongue flicking out past his lips, he caught the salty bead on his tongue and, nipping her ear, went on with his story.
"The fight between the two rival clans was indeed an immense one, and many losses were suffered. Yet, none as great as the loss of the young, futuristic miko. She, the helpless maiden, watched as each and every one of the people she had come to see as family were ripped from her life. Fate was a cruel mistress to the young girl, taking from her not only her first family, but her second as well."
"The demon slayer, a woman she had come to see as a sister, decapitated by her own weapon, her faithful fire neko burnt alive next to her fallen corpse. The monk, who was like a brother, was sucked into the wind tunnel that had cursed his hand since the day of his birth. The fox kit, a child who she had claimed as her own, eaten alive by one of the many demons that accompanied their powerful foe."
He paused then, to lean closer to the sobbing woman, and cruel lips murmured, "The young miko… her heart broke when he died. She could do naught but stand and watch as her son was devoured, screaming her name during his last moments alive."
She made no attempt to hide the endless stream of tears that was now cascading down her face, cerulean orbs wide with horror as a gruesome scene from her past played out yet again before her very eyes. His pained, frantic voice rang clearly through her memory.
"And then," he went on, tapping her lightly on the nose, "the boy she fell in love with, the half-demon who was infatuated with the woman she was reincarnated from, then he died. What truly crushed the poor, unfortunate miko, was that he did not die protecting her, as she might have hoped. No… he died while trying to save her, the undead one. His futile efforts were in vain, however, for the golem soon followed him into the pits of Hell."
Her breath was shallow and short, small pants sounding in the now silent room. Her captor watched her for a moment, loving the hollow, helpless look shining in her eyes. He wrapped his hand in the chains on her feet and gave them a sharp tug. She hissed and looked to him, those sparkling, sapphire orbs frightened and curious.
"Do you know what became of the young miko?" he asked her.
The timid response took him off guard, and he blinked crimson eyes in shock. It did not take him long to recover, though, and when he did the question was imminent. "Tell me?"
Wetting her lips with a quick swipe of her tongue, the young female answered quietly, "She was taken."
"The enemy, the man they had spent so many years fighting, he captured her, and locked her in a castle. There she was to spend the rest of her days, a slave to his bed… a servant to his every whim." The sadness in her voice was evident, rosy lips trembling as the last of her tears fell from her chin.
Cerulean orbs befell him, burning with a deep and bitter loathing. That same, soft voice that had been so full of terror hardened as she spoke to him again. "You tell me the same story every night, Naraku, and every night, the ending is always the same."
"Not your typical fairytale is it, my dear?" he quipped, crimson eyes alit with sick pleasure.
"There is no such thing," she hissed, a darkness lacing her tone, "as a fairytale ending."
"How very cynical of you, Kagome," Naraku purred, pale lips brushing against her splotchy, porcelain cheek. He stroked her arm gently, relishing her frailty. Like a china doll, pale and perfect, so easily broken.
"In reality," he went on, "more often than not it is the villain who is the victor." Vicious, powerful arms crushed her to him, his lips ghosting over hers as he cooed, "It's a shame you had to get entangled in this web of deceit, Kagome. A pure, innocent child such as your self had no place here."
"You speak to me as though I'm the one who lost."
"Haven't you? Your family, your friends… everything you've known and held dear is gone. And you… you are left alone to face the cruelty of this world." The raven-haired male stroked her hair tenderly, twining ebony strands through his fingers.
Her murmur barely reached his ears, soft and lilting through the dimly lit room like a whisper of shadow. "No?" he repeated curiously.
"No, I haven't lost."
He hummed, claws tracing the well chiseled line of his jaw. "It seems to me, little one, that the darkness has begun to take over your subconscious."
She tilted her head toward him, eyes calm as she replied, "I am as sane as I was the day I arrived in this prison. Let me tell you something, Naraku. That story, you can tell it to me every night, remind me of all the things I have lost, but it matters not, because the story isn't over yet."
"Oh?" he hummed, jet-black brow lifting in scrutiny. "And how does it end, miko?"
She pulled herself from his lap, sliding back into her corner. At first she was surprised that he let her, and she half expected him to lash out and strike her for her disobedience. In his eyes, a curious, somewhat foreboding look stirred, and she swallowed hard, wincing when her throat constricted painfully.
"The villain, he acquired the final shards of the Shikon jewel; that much is true. With them he wished for immortality. He captured the helpless, virgin priestess and locked her away in his castle, using her to live out his most twisted pleasures. With his newly obtained strength, he quickly rose into the seat of power, destroying all who opposed him. And that… that is where the miko finds her own victory."
He frowned, not understanding what she was implying. "You make no sense, Kagome."
"It makes perfect sense," she told him confidently, her fear of him lashing out melting away and being replaced by determination and hope. "By wishing for what he did, what would he gain? The world? The ability to destroy it piece by piece? Once his task was complete, and all he sought was attained, what would be left? An infinite nothingness; a Hell that he unknowingly created for himself."
Naraku scowled, fists clenching at the mocking pitch of her voice. That sickeningly sweet smile on her lips drove him wild, and for a split second, he imagined her delicious, crimson blood drenching his fingertips, soaking into the wood floor and staining the rice paper walls.
"The miko, young as she was, was only human, and would one day die. On this day she would ascend into the heavens and would find peace." Her smile grew as his sneer deepened, the look of sheer hatred in his eyes reminding her that she truly was mortal, and that on the day of her death she would become the victor.
"And you, Naraku, will be left alone in your immortality, to live alone forever with nothing and no one. You may be immune to death of the physical nature, therefore escaping the flames of the underworld, but that doesn't matter. This place that you've created so blindly, this desolate, empty world, is just as bad as Hell. With no one to kill, and nothing to rule, what is left? Your wish… your selfish, stupid wish, will be your eternal prison… and I hope you rot in it you bastard."
The sharp sting that burned in her cheek made her smile, and when he lifted her into the air by the throat she laughed.
"Why do you laugh, wench? I'll see to it that the remainder of your wretched days are spent in pain!" the hanyou shouted angrily, the venom lacing his aura manifesting in the form of a great purple mist. Like eels it seeped from his pores, surrounding them with its putrid, toxic odor.
Despite his vice-like grip she managed to choke out, "I laugh and I smile because every wound… every injury you inflict upon me only reminds me of my mortality. Every drop of blood you shed brings me one step closer to my victory, and your failure."
"Bitch," he hissed scathingly before dropping her. Striding gracefully to the door, he pushed the screen aside and stopped, turning back to her and commanding, "Eat." A long, deadly finger pointed to the small plate of food that had been set aside for her, food that had been ignored thus far.
Eyes blazing an alarming shade of red, he warned, "Trust me, miko, you will need to build up your strength for later."
With that he was gone.
Kagome glanced languidly at the plate, eyeing the bread and fruit lined so neatly atop it. Reaching forward, she plucked the dinner roll from the platter and bit into it. A sigh left her lips as her mouth was flooded with flavor. Soft and warm it sat so nicely on the tip of her tongue, and her stomach growled its approval.
Usually she wouldn't eat, but she felt especially hungry that evening, and the food looked far too inviting to waste. Whatever Naraku had planned for her later would not be pleasant, she knew, and she looked forward to every moment of it.
Swallowing the small slice of fruit she had been chewing, she grinned a little, her quiet words breaking the silence of the room.
Odd, hm? Well, it was just a little idea that came to me while I was in the midst of doing dick all. You know what else… this is the first story I have ever written without citrus. Wowzers! That's huge for me because I'm a ridiculous pervert. I mean I'm like an M Grade perv. What does M Grade mean, you ask? Miroku Grade. Tee hee, so clever am I.
Anyways, review, please, and try not to be too terribly hard on me, because I do realize this sounds like 'Pitifully Hopeful'. I just felt I had to write it. If nothing else, grade me on the style, etc.
Thanks for your time!