White dog, blue moon.
By Hikari hime
Disclaimer: Inuyasha and its characters are not mine. Never will be. All belongeth to Takahashi sensei. Deep bow
The sketch of the dead parrot belongs to the Monty Pythons, I'm only quoting them there for the sake of my never ending admiration of their works of pure art. You might recognise them... if you tell me in your review, I might give you a cookie, or a one shot, as you prefer.
Warning: A bit of angst, a bit of ecological ideology, loads of fluff... Hopefully, no OOCness though. Always in Canon Universe and following the manga, but post Naraku's demise. Yes, you're in a Hikari chan's fic... Please fasten your seat belts and enjoy the ride. If you don't, please feel free to tell me, albeit I will only understand English and French, no SMS language or mystery rebus please. If you appreciated it, feel free to tell me too. -Giggles-
Chapter 1: The pound
Winter scattered away as spring came forth with its cohort of greens and pinks. Birds chirped happily on budding branches, and Sun battered mercilessly all traces of lingering coldness.
Yes, all was bright outdoors and even people could feel the effect of the changing of season, their gazes a bit less downcast than usual, their hearts a little lighter...
It was not the case for Kagome.
The old family cat had decided to kick the bucket, pass away, eat dandelions by the roots... He had died, to be more precise. It had been a month now, but still, the young woman felt sore inside.
He had been her companion for so long, seventeen years, she had lived with him nearly all her life. And now he was gone to the world of cat nips and naps.
Not one to feel depressed for too long, Kagome had decided to go to the town pound. She hated this pet jail and she thought she might just make one happy by freeing it.
She stopped in front of the first gate, a drop of cold sweat gliding from her hairline to her brows and down her right cheek.
Was it Jyaki she was sensing? No, it couldn't be, there were no youkais left in her time, and the well had been sealed for years now.
Even from a distance, she could smell the acrid scent of excrement mixed with fear and sorrow. Barks and yowls could be heard, expressing agony and endless pain, betrayal permeated the very atmosphere.
The betrayal of humans.
They had devoted their very lives to their owners and had been repaid with three square meters of cold, hard concrete.
Of course they were tended to, but ten minutes in a crowded courtyard and one scratch a month could hardly keep them from the suffering the lack of love entailed. Their keepers were not at fault either, they were just too many...
Hesitantly, Kagome rang the door bell.
Immediately, hundreds of dogs began to bark loudly, as if they knew one of them was going to be saved from this living hell. The ex-miko sighed as a wave of pure angst washed through her. It was nearly unbearable, but she had to do it. She felt that she had to, somehow. It was as if the very building was calling her.
As the door opened, she nearly choked as the scent hit her.
Her senses were a bit enhanced compared to her fellow humans, as she was fully trained now and used to being aware of her environment, more than every body else. She regretted the fact for the moment, as her breakfast protested vehemently in her stomach.
A chubby old woman greeted her in the entrance with a fake smile full of rotten teeth. Her beady eyes shone with pure malice and her greasy skin was spotted with small unhealthy red dots.
A perfect human in this perfect place.
Kagome had never been afraid of youkais, demons, death... But there, she felt wary of the woman facing her. The first danger would be « Does she really want me to shake the hand she had held out in front of me? »
The young miko froze, staring directly into the eyes of the old witch. She didn't touch the proposed appendage. She liked her body free of germs, thank you very much.
A small frown creasing her rounded face, the secretary, as she told Kagome she was, guided her through the old building to see the « doggies ».
A long corridor, two rows of cells neatly sterilised, nearly a hundred canines howling to death. Charming, she thought. At the end of the dimly lighted structure, a metallic door painted in red.
« Staff only » was the message pinned on the door. More growling could be heard behind it.
Kagome froze, again, and listened to the feral mewling behind the forbidden entrance. As a sense of recognition brushed softly against her very soul, she gasped... And retched where she stood.
It could not be. She had heard this sound only once, in another life it seemed, and she had to hear it for the second time in such a place.
Her pale face turned to the now very annoyed woman, she muttered a half hearted apology, and waited for her to be left alone in the compound as the secretary went to fetch something to clean the mess.
Quickly, the young woman ran to the forbidden door and peeked through the filthy window.
There, tied to an examination table in the centre of the small room, lay a great white dog. The size of an Irish wolfhound, sharp fangs and claws, golden eyes and a discreet crescent moon on his forehead.
He was smaller than what she recalled, much smaller, but it was him. If she had hesitated, she now could not, as red slowly invaded the golden irises and the dog's fur exuded a faint trace of youki.
He was in a bad shape, ribs bulging with his rapid breathing. His fur was everything but silky, and dried blood matted his paws. Metallic chains were keeping him from moving on the table, as a man in a white coat was circling him, a syringe in his gloved right hand.
The man was trembling slightly. And then Kagome knew this must not have been his first time.
Who could have known Sesshoumaru was immune to poisons? Not them, for sure.
Before the apparent vet could do anything, the miko screamed, opening the door with enough strength to make an elephant collapse. The assaulted door banged ruthlessly against the wall, the window chattering with the force of the impact.
The only sound was the dog's raspy breathing.
And then all hell was loose again: the man shouted curses at her and the woman screeched behind her.
Kagome, not listening to the endless complaining of the annoying humans, was looking at the once youkai on the table, assessing the damages done to his once pristine perfection.
Anger rose in the heart of the ex-warrior. The dog, the only one to notice her state of mind, the only one noticing the pink hue surrounding her, whimpered feebly, all red fading from his eyes.
Her voice rang, high and clear, above the unending rattling. It was a commending voice, one that you had to listen to. So they did the only sensible thing: they shut their mouths and listened to her.
« What do you think you're doing mister? » She asked.
« I'm putting it to sleep... It's a dangerous beast, this one, no one could tame him, train him or break him... We can't just keep such a monster... »
« Shut up. This ends now. I'm taking him. Where do I sign? » Her countenance was tense, but her will was unwavering. She was in control of her rage, using its energy to bend the reality to her wishes.
And for now, she wished for the once noble inuyoukai to be out of this hell.
« Miss Higurashi, we can't let you adopt it... It'll bite you... And we'll be considered responsible... » The woman was worrying her lower lip now...
« I'll sign a discharge formula. Just bring it to me. And leave the room, I have to free him from the chains. »
« But... »
« Get. Out. » Kagome nearly growled at them, sending them scurrying to the corridor and closing the now broken door.
She was looking at him.
Every other human he had had the pleasure to meet lately were wretched and wrong. Not her. Even in her rage, she had exuded purity from every pore of her being.
It was calming him, this light coating her very skin, even if he had a sense of danger somehow. As if the light could hurt or heal him at the same time.
He didn't know how much time he had spent in this place. He had felt mostly dazed and angry, threatened, vulnerable.
He had hated feeling vulnerable.
He had been captured in a state of weakness a few years ago and the humans had tried to tame him, to train him... He... Who was once the most feared creature of all Japan... They had tried to make him roll over or fetch a stick...
And when he had expressed his disapproval by biting one of them, they had locked him away in a small cell and chained him to the wall.
And when that didn't calm him down, the injections had begun.
It was a lethal poison. Lethal for his animal counterpart, that is, he was mostly unaffected. But they tried each and every day to kill him, and that had the effect of weakening him even further.
What pollution and extinction of wild spaces had begun, the injections were continuing, leading to his certain death.
And then she had come.
And she was looking at him as if she knew him. Not this form of him, but the real him, the old him, the strong and powerful him.
There was no pity in her eyes, and he felt grateful for it.
There was recognition and shame.
There was a quiet plea.
She wanted to help him and was asking him... waiting for a sign of approval from him.
Her hands were coated in a pink hue now and she was nearing him slowly, cautiously, as if not to frighten him.
He looked at her and nodded his head minutely. She understood and allowed her hands to touch the matted fur of his flank, her blue greyish gaze still locked in his golden one.
Warmth invaded his tired body as she healed him, purifying the foul substances in his blood. It would be a very long time before he could replenish his youki, especially in a city as big a Tokyo, but he felt better. He could walk on his own now, at least.
Kagome untied him carefully and looked at him again expectantly.
Slowly, the white dog sat on the table, moving his limbs one by one to assure himself of the lack of injury or pain. He was still weak, but he knew he could follow her if she wanted him to...
He gazed at her. She was seemingly waiting for him, facing the wall, spacing out, thinking of a way out probably. She saw something that made her stop and her eyes went back to him.
« Sesshoumaru? » She asked hesitantly.
He raised his head minutely. He hadn't been called by his own name for so long now, it felt good.
« They won't let me leave with you if you're not on a leash. I'm really sorry, I know you must hate it. Please bear with it for a short while, and then I'll take you home and you'll never need to be tied to anything again. You have my word. » She was nearly begging him, moisture appearing at the corner of her eyes, bottom lip trembling slightly.
Crying females had always been one of his worst weaknesses, he surmised.
He allowed her to tie a leather leash to his metallic collar, hopping somewhat gracefully from the cold table. He padded at her side and they went through the corridor.
Eerie silence reigned as the others watched them go, tails between their hind legs in defeat.
He was going to be free. The information wasn't registering in his conscious thoughts for the moment, as he glided through a hazed state. Fog surrounded him, protecting him from the aggressiveness of his surroundings.
He had been in this putrid jail for so long. How was he going to adapt to the world outside now?
Was he going to wander aimlessly again, avoiding human civilisation as best he could? He had been looking for any youkai presence for ages now and he had never found any, how was he supposed to survive without his kin?
His fur stood on end as they neared the front gate and the greasy smelling woman. He growled behind clenched jaws as she urged the girl to sign some sheets of paper.
Kagome dismissed her concerned chatter with a disdainful snort, going out as fast as her manners allowed her to.
Please review and tell me what you think
Of course, I haven't forgot my other story, chapter 6 is currently on its way.