Disclaimer: Things I do not own include – InuYasha, Cath, my computer

A/N: No, this is not an AU. I just sped time up a little :). Oh, and time jumps closer to the wedding after the dashes! Thanks for reading!

She took a deep breath. 'I can do this, this is right,' Kagome told herself, but no matter how many times she thought it, it didn't help. She looked up at the man standing beside her. Chin up and in a slightly protective stance, Sesshomaru's markings were concealed by his youkai. He stood stoically as the paparazzi attacked the two with questions.

Cath, she stands with a well-intentioned man
But she can't relax with his hand on the small of her back
And as the flashbulbs burst
She holds a smile like someone would hold a crying child

"Mrs. Higurashi, why did you decide to accept Mr. Tashio's marriage proposal?"

Kagome's carefully held smile faltered slightly. Drawing up courage, strength, and some of her high school acting experience she prepared herself to answer. "Well," she turned to smile up at her fiancée, "I love him, isn't that reason enough?" She felt Sesshomaru's hand stiffen slightly on her back, showing support. He knew that this was hard for her, although she doubted he could ever truly understand. Sesshomaru started to gently guide her through the crowd. Privately, they were both surprised at how much publicity their engagement had gotten. Sure, Sesshomaru had been rich before she had met him -not to mention that her futuristic background gave him an edge in business and investment choices- but he was a recluse and by no means a household name. 'Then again, what household would want to say 'killing perfection' multiple times?' Kagome gave a genuine smile at this and turned it affectionately towards her soon-to-be husband and mate. She cared for him, yes, and he cared for her, in his own way. She just had to steel herself away until the wedding was over and her 15 minutes of fame was up.

Soon everybody will ask what became of you
'Cause your heart was dying fast, and you didn't know what to do

--

Kagome finally reached her room after the grueling day. Exhausted, she flopped onto her bed and buried her head in her pillow. After a few minutes she heard her door creak as it cracked open.

"Kagome?" her mom inquired.

"Yeah?" Kagome turned her head to the side, indicating that she was conscious.

"Sweetie, I have a surprise for you," Mrs. Higurashi gave her daughter a small smile while revealing a cream dress from behind her back. "This was mine. I was going to wear it on my wedding day, but then your father and I decided to elope." She looked at the wedding dress fondly before laying it on the bed. "I won't make you wear it," she paused, "I just thought it would save you the trouble of going out again". She glanced toward the magazines on the bedside table, all displayed her daughter and future son-in-law on their covers.

Kagome forced a smile "Thanks, Mom." She was grateful for the dress, but it was just another thing that made the wedding feel less real and less important. With a resigned sigh Kagome tried on the gown. 'This is happening' she gently reminded herself as she admired the fit. It was perfect. She carefully undid the clasps and zipper, changed into her pajamas, and after hanging the dress in her closet, went to bed.

--

Kagome squeezed her eyes shut. How many times had she envisioned this moment? Was it 9 or 10 hundred times? Her dreams always starred the silver-haired man, but the demon beside her didn't have the white dog ears like he did in all her imaginary weddings. 'Ha', she thought dryly, this wasn't her fantasy; it was Kagura's.

Cath, it seems that you live in someone else's dream
In a hand-me-down wedding dress
Where the things that could have been all repressed
But you said your vows, and you closed the door
On so many men who would have loved you more

She looked up and to the side at the congregation. Her gaze slid past friends and family before finally stopping on two guests in the front row. The newlyweds started to vanish as her eyes began to water. Inuyasha was holding Kikyo's hand lightly as he gently held Kagome's gaze. Theirs was a marriage of obligation, he had told her. 'Not that I believe him entirely,' she thought as her eyes flickered toward Kikyo's slightly expanded stomach. Kagome turned back to Sesshomaru. With a cool, calm voice Kagome slowly pronounced the words, "I do".

soon everybody will ask what became of you
'Cause your heart was dying fast, and you didn't know what to do

Kagome only looked back once as she took her first steps with Sesshomaru as man and wife. She grew only the slightest bit insulted as disbelief widened the eyes of their audience. Yes, it had been a rash move - Sesshomaru wasn't her soul-mate, after all - but he had been there for her each time she saw Inuyasha with Kikyo, each time her heart had broken a little more. He had offered her an escape from the pain, and she had taken it. She only could only hope that it lasted. With a silent prayer to God, she asked if she had done the right thing as she entered the waiting limo and was driven away.

The whispers that it won't last roll up and down the pews
But if their hearts were dying that fast,
They'd have done the same as you
And I'd have done the same as you

A/N: There you have it! I hope you enjoyed it….especially enough to leave a review!