Summary: AU: Silence is not a gift. It is a curse. She is a new student at a new school with a terrible past. Ever since the night of the accident that claimed her father's life, she hasn't breathed a word. That is, until a certain half breed and his friends invite her in with open arms. During the course of a week, Kagome experiences Friendship, Love, and Betrayal. Will she ever be able to speak of that night that clamied her father's life as well as her voice?

Speak

Chapter 1: Prologue: Silence

The sun dipped below the horizon as the final rays of sunlight poured into the bland room. She stood alone, her midnight hair shifting slightly from the breeze wafting through the open window. Her big brown eyes clouded over with desolation as she slowly packed the remainder of her school supplies. Why did we have to move? These people will be just like everyone else, 'pick on her because she doesn't talk'. The girl's anger peaked as she paused the task at hand. Shaking her head, forcing the dark thoughts out of her mind, she heaved a sigh. Gloom replaced her fury as she continued to pack.

A knock came to the door. "Kagome," she heard her younger brother, Souta, call out to her. Glancing over her shoulder at the sound of her name, the door opened to reveal a young boy, only about ten years old. She smiled and turned back to cramming her notebooks into her back pack. Souta came up beside her and watched her pack her things. "Mom wants you downstairs. She says she has something for you."

The teenager nodded her head, showing him she understood. He smiled half-heartily and retreated from her room, shutting the door behind him. Kagome finished stuffing the remainder of her supplies into her bag and zipped it up. Setting it on her desk, she walked to the door. I wonder what mom wants to give me. Lost in her thoughts, the young woman happily scampered down the stairs.

Stopping at the landing, Kagome looked around the see where her mother was. "I'm in here," came a smooth, feminine voice, beckoning her daughter to the kitchen. She smiled, thankful her mom had heard her. Bounding towards the kitchen, her senses immediately filled with the smell of her mother's cooking. Kagome closed her eyes and breathed deeply, allowing the aroma to calm her nerves.

Her mother stood by the stove, stirring chicken soup in a pot. The raven-haired beauty took a seat at the table, waiting expectantly. As the older woman continued to cook, silence enshrouded them.

"You know, dear," her mother finally spoke. "Starting at a new school won't be so bad." She stole a glance at her daughter and allowed a sad smile to play on her lips. Kagome's expression twisted in displeasure as she crossed her arms and pouted. Giving a slight chuckle, her mother returned to preparing dinner.

Turning off the stove, the older woman silently filled the dishes with the meal she had concocted. "Gramps, Souta! Dinner is ready," she called through the quiet house. A mumble of replies and a shuffling of feet reached their ears as an elderly gentleman and the young boy appeared in the kitchen. They took their respective seats as the small table, waiting patiently for their food.

The dishes were set down in front of each individual as Kagome's mother sat down as well. Everyone began to eat silently. I thought mom had something she wanted to give me ...Kagome thought, eyeing her mom suspiciously. The dark haired woman didn't seem to notice her daughter's glances as she continued to eat the American dish.

"Souta, have you finished packing?" The kind hearted woman always made sure everyone had everything they needed. Said boy nodded in reply as he shoved another bit of chicken into his mouth.

"Don't forget the Sacred Sutras. They will protect you from evil and ward off bad spirits. Those spells have been handed down through the generations to our family ..." Kagome's grandfather didn't have a chance to finish as she gave him a small punch in the arm; telling him to give it a rest. The older man sighed in defeat. Kagome glanced down at her meal as a smile adorned her lips. He never changes ...

After dinner, the men of the house headed upstairs to prepare for bed. Everyone had a big day ahead of them tomorrow. Souta and Kagome started at a new school, their mom had to start her new job as a nurse, and their grandfather had to finish unpacking all of the antiques the movers had stored in the shed.

Kagome and her mother stayed in the kitchen, cleaning up the dinner dishes. They were both quiet as a comfortable silence hovered in the air. The only thing that graced their ears was the shuffling of feet upstairs and the quiet clanking of china.

As they finished, Kagome dried off her hands. Making her way towards the stairs, her mother's voice stopped her. "Kagome, could you wait here for a moment? I'd like to give you something." The teenager immediately turned around, an eager look in her eyes. The older woman smiled and left the room. Kagome sat down at the table, awaiting her mother's return.

She didn't have to wait long, however, as her mother soon returned with a small jewelry box. Her chestnut eyes never left the gift as Kagome watched her mother set it down on the table between them.

"It was your father's. He was going to give it to you as a birthday gift." Kagome stared wide eyed at her mother when she spoke, her gentle voice over taken by sadness. Her birthday wasn't for another two weeks; she was turning seventeen. "I thought you needed some encouragement." They hadn't really talked much about her father since the accident, so it surprised the young girl. With shaky hands, Kagome fingered the red velvet box before opening it. Her eyes sparkled and her mouth dropped as she saw what it contained. It was the most beautiful necklace she had ever lain eyes on.

It had a thin silver chain and attached to it was a small silver heart; representing a locket. A cursive K had been engraved on the front. The new owner delicately pulled the chain out from it's confinement and draped it over her fingers; the locket centered in her palm. Kagome's face filled with wonder as she slowly opened it. Tears dotted the corners of her eyes as she saw what was inside. The left portion of the heart held a picture of her father, smiling happily. The right side held a picture of Kagome when she was much younger. The two pictures appeared to be from the same photo, but they had been cut to fit inside the tiny frames. They were positioned just right; her younger, smiling face looking up towards her father.

Tears fell from her eyes as she was pushed into a fit of silent sobs. Kagome's mother immediately rushed to her daughter's side, bringing her into an embrace. They sat there for a moment as the desolate teenager regained control over her emotions. She lifted her head off of her mother's shoulder and glanced at her angelic visage. Forcing a smile, the young maiden stood up and left the kitchen, heading towards her room.

Kagome's mother sat there silently as she watched her oldest child ascend the stairs until she disappeared into her room. "Oh, Kagome ... what can I do? How can I help you?" Her large, doe eyes filled with despair as she stood. She wandered around the room, securing the doors and shutting off the remaining lights. The frail woman proceeded to her bedroom at the top of the stairs. Walking into her room, she rested her hand lightly against the wall to guide the way and stumbled towards the closet.

When she made it to the twin mirror-doors, she opened them and reached her hand into the very back of the small space; taking out a neatly wrapped package. The broken woman opened it and carefully pulled out the clothes that had been secured inside. Bringing them to her face, she inhaled deeply. They still hold his scent. Kagome's mother sighed as she continued to sit on the edge of her bed; remembering her husband. She finally returned the fabric to their package and burrowed it back into the depth of her closet, hidden from view. Slowly rising, the dark haired beauty made her way to her bed; the moon lightly her path.

She closed the curtains and sat down on the firm mattress. Her thoughts took over as she sat in the dark, weeping silently to herself.

A/N: So I was going to do a Christmas special (either innterconnected one-shots or A Christmas Wish) but I couldn't keep the spirit long enough to do so. Instead, I've decided to publish my newest story. As always, updates are going to slow down a bit because I have four stories going, but THD should be finishing up soon. I was going to update TBAT but I thought it to be too gory and depressing for Christmas. So I decided to give you Speak. Hope you like it and please review! Thanks!

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!