I'm back!!!!!!!!! First of all, to all the people that read 'Twisted Hearts' and have been waiting for the one-shot I promised...I will write it, but I had to get at least this chapter out of my system. It's been killing me. Oh, and I do hope you like this story as much as you liked the other one.

To all those who are new...Well, I can only hope you like my stories enough to stick around until the end.

As your when I update, and I'll get this clear from the first chapter...It will be every three weeks (I'll try to make it two), but remember, I have to write the chapter, and then it has to pass through my two editors (Collette and Jane, they are wonderful and will make sure to make this story readable, so love them like I do).

Also, this story is far darker than the last one, contains lots of death, lots of torture (maybe), and so on, so I wasn't going to post in on Christmas, but I decided against it. It's my gift to you, hahaha, so I expect a gift back (reviews, people, they make me smile). So, and I think those are all the warnings for now. Enjoy.

Disclamer: I don't own Inuyasha or any of its character. (Would I really be writting this if I did?)


Fragments Of A Shattered Moon

The death of a Miko

She will never, ever, recover from this. It will hunt her, break her, shatter her, and she will never, ever, forget the smell, the noise, the lament of her universe ending.

She does not wish to survive through this.


"Inuyasha?" Her voice is low. The others are asleep. She does not want to disturb them. They need their rest. It has been too long since any one of them could get a good night's sleep. Shippo is snoring. Sango's curled up with Miroku with her head on his chest and his hand over her waist. Kagome stares at them with a look of happiness and pain.

She is ecstatic that after all they have been through, they've found each other. Through all the fights, near death experiences, and weirdness of it all, they somehow managed to see through the barrier around each other, and found love.

But love… isn't the word a stab through her very own heart?

She wishes, always wishes, for love to find her, but as her attention goes back to the hanyou besides her, his ears alert, waiting for whatever she has to say, she knows love is not for her.

Not on this Era. Not on her time. Just…not for her.

"Inuyasha" She starts again, "how long have we known each other?"

He tilts his head to the side, rolls his eyes, and smirks. "A long time. I don't know. Keh, why does it matter?" He takes his eyes from her and focuses them on the sky above them.

"Inuyasha…" She whispers softly, and his eyes fall from the sky to her again.

"Three years, 4 months, 1 week, and 5 days." He finally says. He doesn't even have to think about it. He could never be able to forget the day he woke up to a pair of blue eyes and a face he somehow mistook for Kikyo's. He is not sure how he could do that with the eyes so different. However, he knows exactly how long she has been part of his life. Sometimes, and it is not something he would ever say to anyone, he thinks his existence started with her, but Kikyo is always at the back of his head, and so Kagome is more like the start of his second life.

Kagome is his second chance.

"Kagome…" She was the first thing he saw when he awoke. She is the reason why they started this crusade. She broke the spell that held him to a tree, broke the peal that put him on the tree in the first place, and broke the armor he had built around himself.

She did it all with extreme ease. She just had to exist, to be his Kagome… and the thought of her name is enough to make him feel at ease. She freed him without thinking twice. She broke the most powerful, magical thing ever with a single shot. Passed though all his shields without effort.

Etched in his very soul is the knowledge of the time they have been in this. And if he is still fighting, it is because of her.

Nevertheless, he will never tell her any of this.

"Inuyasha…." And he looks at her with that warmth that makes her heart melt. She pretends, for just a moment, that he loves her as a woman and not as friends, not because she is so much like Kikyo. Before the sadness and longing reaches her eyes, she smiles brightly at him. "I'm turning eighteen tomorrow." She finally says.

Inuyasha smirks. "Baka, is that all? I knew that already."

He reaches for her hand, letting them linger for longer than necessary, and when he finally lets go, Kagome is left with a tingling feeling and something metallic in it. She opens her hand, finding a cherry blossom necklace. It is small, delicate, with as much detail as it can get. Kagome thinks it would be real if not for the white silver color it has.

"I…"

"It's nothing." Inuyasha is looking at the ground, his cheeks flushed. "It's just something I got last time we were at your time. The owner of the place said it was made with…white gold. I think."

Kagome cannot stop her surprised expression. "But that's expensive!" she looks at him through narrowed eyed. "Did you steal it?"

He raises his eyes, bursting with anger. "Of course not!"

"How did you pay for it?"

Their voices are becoming louder. Not one of their companions even stirs. They are used to sleeping through their fights. In fact, they do not sleep quiet so well if they are not fighting. It gives them a sense of normality.

"I didn't pay for it!"

"Then you stole it!"

"No!"

"Then what?"

They are both glaring at each other. There could even be sparks flashing between them both.

"The owner gave it to me."

Suspicion comes into her eyes. "Just like that?" It is not that she does not believe him. It is just that, in her time, there is no such thing as something coming free.

"I…" The anger leaves his eyes, and he is blushing again. "I just wanted to give you something, and I came to this store, and you were busy with your school, so I was bored…" He tries to wave his hand, making it an unimportant issue. "I saw the necklace, and the owner gave it to me."

"Why?"

He sighs in a resign way. "I told him about you, and he gave it to me."

Kagome opens her mouth, but she does not have something to say. What exactly did he tell the owner?

Then it all means little because suddenly, it hits her. He remembered her birthday, got her something, and it has been three years, but it feels like longer. It feels like he has always been part of her.

"Can you put it on?" She asks him, handing him the necklace. He takes it, hesitates for just a second before putting it around her neck without another word, and clasps it. She feels the weight of it against her neck.

"Thank you,"

Little things like these make Kagome think she truly is fighting for something.

Inuyasha is just glad she liked it.

The stars keep shining above them. Inuyasha takes her hand, and Kagome wastes her birthday wish on hoping for a love that will never be returned.

--

'It was not supposed to go this way.' She is dying. There is no doubt in that. 'It truly wasn't.'

She feels so much pain that the pain is not even recognizable anymore. She cannot even point out the places that hurt more than others did. More than a dozen bones are broken. At least three ribcages are cracked. She is sure at least one of them perforated one of her lungs because she has trouble breathing.

Then again, it could be the other dozen injuries she has.

She has to have internal bleeding.

Her vision is getting blurry. She cannot focus anything anymore. She feels cold. The coldness is slowly taking over her body. She is numbing.

Wait. No. She is not; the pain is still very much alive.

What a pity.

Her head feels wet. She probably has a bleeding injury there. For a moment, she wonders how much blood she really has because she is bleeding internally and externally, and it just does not make sense for her to live and bleed so much at the same time. Her left leg twists in an odd, unnatural way. She moves her head to the side, flinches when she sees her blood is tinting the earth under her and surrounding her body.

She thinks it is almost funny.

Her blood is coming out of her body, weakening her, and at the same time surrounding her. The blood that can save her is underneath her, all around her, as if mocking her. It is like bathing a dehydrated instead of letting them drink at least a drop of water. The source that could save her is there, but she cannot take it. It is out of her reach, as many things have been, as Inuyasha has always been…

She cuts that line of thought. She will not think of him now. She cannot. She will not. She refuses to.

Besides, the metallic smell of her blood is reaching her nostrils, making her dizzy. She can smell the damn blood. It is hers, and she cannot have it anymore. To top it all, she can feel it against her skin. It is sticky and uncomfortable. As if she needed more things to make her uncomfortable.

Can't she die comfortable?

If she were to survive this, she would hate color red to the point of not being able to see it ever again.

She knows she will not survive it, though.

Maybe funny is not the right word for this.

Somehow, she has not lost consciousness yet. It is a pity, really, because the events of what had happened keep playing in her mind, and she wants a moment of peace before she dies, but Kami will not give her even that. Someone truly hates her and wants her to suffer until all her precious, stupid, red blood is out of her, inside her in all the places it should not be. She has given her last breath, has seen her last sunset, and has nothing left to offer. However hates her really holds a grudge against her and are truly twisted, evil bastards because they will make her die right in between the sunset, when the sun is red, when the last thing she sees is that horrible color.

Hours, minutes, hours later, Kagome truly hates whoever Gods exist and have put her through this.

Maybe she will go to hell for that. It does not really matter.

She has already lived in hell, and these last few hours have been hell. What occurred keeps playing in her mind, so even right now is hell. Everything is hell. Hell is truly overestimated.

She is not stupid enough to believe that she will have peace in the afterlife. If she has to be truthful, she does not really believe in heaven now. She cannot. Not with all this pain overcoming her. Not with all that happened. Not with what was done to them…

There is only hell for her, and heaven is just one more of those things she wanted to believe in but never really happened.

She feels sorry for all those who still believe. Those people feel sorry for her because she does not believe anymore.

It is a vicious cycle.

She wonders who is more pathetic. She knows she is unhappy.

Her blood keeps slipping out of her body. She tries to remember just how much of it she has, but she did not attend that class. She was busy trying to stop the world from ending. It doesn't really matter anymore, anyway. It is not as if that is going to save her.

'I used to be so innocent.' She thinks. It is true. She was so stupidly innocent she cannot believe it.

She lived filled with hope, and she believed life was full of opportunities. The world would heal. She would live until she was very old. Inuyasha would love her.

It is funny, but she always thought she would die tucked on her bed, warm, old, and fulfilled. Even though she was close to death every day, she always believed she would go in that way. Instead, she is lying on the cold ground. Her blood is her bed. The animals will feed with what is left of her. She will have no tomb, no goodbye speech, and no nothing. The people she loves will not be able to mourn her properly. Most of them died just before her, so there really is not anyone left but her family.

How sad.

Even sadder is the fact that her family will never truly know what happened to her. They will always wonder if she stayed trapped on the other side. They will always wait for her to return. They will never know the truth, but they will hope she is okay, and it crushes her because dead is definitely not okay. Every day, they will wake up hopping that she comes back to them, and she will never be able to. She truly feels bad for them because they will remember her as a cheerful, hopeful, innocent girl, and that is definitely not, what she is anymore.

She specifically does not feel cheerful.

She cannot hope.

'I am dying, like them before me. I am still losing blood.' And she hurts and is dying, dying, dying… 'How could I have been so stupid?'

She should have read the signs. Her story was too fantastic, too unreal to end in any other way than a bad way. It was already too much that her life seemed like some sort of fairytale to end like one, too.

A girl who fell down a well and ended up in the Feudal Era?

She didn't really understand where she was at first. Suddenly, there were trees, the air felt purer, and everything was so quiet…

She felt like Dorothy taken to Oz.

Demons and half demons and pearls that granted wishes?

There was something weird about this place. It felt strange, her body felt strange, and when that horrible looking creature attacked her, she did not react right away because it all felt like a dream. People didn't get hurt in their dreams, right? As she got a better look at the figure trying to take something out of her body, she wondered if people died in dreams.

The most powerful pearl that ever existed broken by a girl who wanted to prove she was not useless?

She took the arrow, aimed at the bird, and somehow managed to hit the pearl. That was just pure, bad luck. I mean, the pearl was so small! It was in the bird's mouth! How could she hit it? How could she hit the one spot on the huge bird that she was not supposed to hit at all? It was just like her…

A quest to get all the pieces of the pink, powerful pearl back?

Because it was a magical pearl, and this was definitely not real. All the shards had to splatter across Old Japan. The completely rude boy she had just woken up demanded her to help him, more like forced her, to find all the pieces. She could not really say no to him because it kind of was her fault that it had broken, but she couldn't just let him win, so she argued how it was also his fault, and one argument led to another, and she ended up accepting to be his shard detector anyway.

An orphaned fox-demon, eager to have a family?

It was funny, because she knew Shippo would become part of them as soon as she saw him. He had lost everything, and they could give him something back. So, despite the fact that he was almost useless for their team, they accepted him, took him in, and showed him to be stronger.

A dead priestess who revived and wanted to kill the one she claimed to be her only love?

She was not there, and then she was there. She came and ruined Kagome's life. Just when Inuyasha was accepting her, Kikyo came back to life, and of course, she could not come back as a nice, decent miko. No.

She had to come back as a mean, bitchy priestess whose only purpose was to get back at the hanyou that would always love her and had never truly betrayed her.

A lecherous monk?

He was handsome. That was what Kagome first thought when she laid eyes on Miroku. Then the idiot had tried to grip more than was allowed, and she hit him, hard. Inuyasha tried to kill him, and somehow, the grappling stopped. He became part of the family she was forming in the past.

She could not believe a monk could be so perverted.

A kind demon slayer?

She was more like an older sister than a hunter of demons That is, except when she used her weapon and destroyed her good share of demons. She fought without thinking twice, always certain. Kagome almost envied her. On the other side, Sango was always there for her. She did not let her fall. She gave her advice, explained things to her no one else bothered to, and was there to support her.

Kagome was so very glad she had found Sango.

A half-demon eager for power?

Naraku could only think of becoming more powerful. At least, that was what Kagome first thought, but then she realized, somehow, Naraku just wanted to belong. She would have pitied him and tried to befriend him if it was not for the fact that he was constantly trying to kill her and the others.

Pity and thoughts of friendship could really die when one was particularly nasty with you.

Another half demon with dog-ears and eyes like the sun who said he wanted power, too, but really was only looking for a bit of peace?

She knew from the moment she saw him. He looked so calm, so serene, and the only thing that broke that image was that arrow, so she just had to take it out. She never truly thought it would change her life. It was just a small act! Then life flooded into him, he lost all serenity, and twisted her whole life. He kept saying he wanted the pearl to become a full youkai, but that somehow changed as time progressed, and at the end he did not really say it with the same determination.

A girl from the future trying to make the past right?

The future was huge. It was great. It was complicated. She loved the future, her present. She did not know anything else. Then she fell down a well into the past, and she fell in love with it, for it offered so much! It lacked many things, but Kagome thought she could look over it all, if just to see her friends once more. Besides, she had a duty to fulfill.

She could not live her life at her right time until the past was right again.

It was doomed to end wrong.

How could she be so stupid?

In the last moments of her life with probably seconds, or maybe minutes, if she is unlucky, left, she hates it all.

She hates the well, falling down it, her decision to free the hanyou, the damn pearl, the stupid monk, her idiotic decision to care for a fox-demon, the woman that could have been her sister, the wolf youkai who swore she was his, hates…it all.

Every single decision she made. Every person she met.

She hates, hates, hates.

Maybe she should be more optimistic. She definitely could at least try. There is a bright side in everything. Something good has to come out of this, and it cannot be just for Naraku. She turns things in her head, but really, whom is she kidding? Optimism is too much for her right now. She cannot look at the bright side if things.

She tries to close her eyes, to isolate herself from the exterior, but she has dry blood on them, and now they are stuck to her skin. She doesn't have enough strength left in her body to shut them.

Isn't that hilarious?

Kagome thinks not.

She is taking too much time to die, in her opinion. Could death just hurry and do its job? Her grandfather would be disappointed of her if he could hear her thoughts. He always did say she was the bravest person he had ever known. She had laughed and told him there were braver people than her.

There was Miroku, to start with.

Miroku, who laughed and smiled. Miroku, who truly saw the bright side in everything. The monk, taken away by death the very minute, swallowed by that big hole on his hands that made him strong and at the same time cursed him. Miroku, who had always had a word of counsel, who fought for them regardless of the consequences. Miroku, who knew his time was running out, faster every time he used Kazaana to save them from whatever was attacking them.

Miroku, who waited for death all his life, until it finally took him.

Then there was Sango.

Sango, sweet, caring, Sango, who carried the world on her shoulders. Sango, whose weapon was so, so large, yet she carried Hiraikotsu like it were a feather. The beautiful exterminator who lost her family, her tribe, and then had to fight against her brother. Sango, who went to extremes just to get her brother back, only to end up dead, alone, and unsuccessful at saving her brother. Sango, who had truly been like a sister to her, offering her silent comfort, and who could no longer bring that comfort to anyone else

Because she was…And no, she would not think of that now.

Or Shippo, who never really knew how to fight because he was too small, too young, just a child. A kid who had become orphaned at such a tender age in such a cruel world for lonely persons. He would never have lasted a few months if they had not found him, but they had, and they had given him a surrogate family. Shippo, who could not really do much, would risk his like for any of them in a heartbeat. Her young Shippo, who could have become such a great youkai if only he was given the chance.

And Inuyasha. Always Inuyasha.

Suddenly, Kagome cannot think. She chokes with a pain purely emotional, and hates herself for hating them all even for a few seconds. Kagome wants to cry. If she could, she would, but her body cannot put together enough strength to do that. She cannot. She will not. It will not make a difference.

It is only now, at the end of the road, that she finally understands that tears never make anything better. They bring no solutions. They only leave you dry, weak, and tired. She wishes she had known that before. Wishes someone had bothered to explain that. She wasted so much time crying when she could have been doing something useful…

It would definitely have saved her many nights falling asleep crying.

'I used to cry for Inuyasha.' She thinks.

She would cry for him for hours because she loved him so much, and he did not love her at all. He did not love her as she wanted him to love her.

He loved a dead priestess who wanted him dead. Okay, so maybe at the end Kikyo had not wanted him dead, but she had for such a long time. Kagome had loved him from the start, though, so didn't that earn her points?

She had cried at the unfairness of it all. As months that became years went by, she started accepting the fact that he would never love her. He only had eyes for Kikyo. Eventually, she let go of him. At least, she tried to.

She cried the night she realized her love for Inuyasha was diminishing. She cried when her heart did not want to fly out of her chest when she saw him. She cried when he stopped bringing butterflies to her stomach. She cried when she realized her love for him was still there, as present as ever, but it had subsided to acceptance of unrequited love, slowly becoming a more passive keenness, until Kagome was sure it would be gone.

She cried because she loved him, but that was not important anymore.

Damn it all!

She had had no time to reach the point where she would lose her love for him. She still loved him. She'll die loving him.

She cannot cry for Inuyasha.

She cannot cry for the man she loved, still loves. She cannot shed a tear for the man that swallowed his pride and begged for her life.

She cannot, and if anything, this is the one reason why she deserves everything she is getting right now.

'Forgive me, Inuyasha.'

She wishes wherever he is, he is finally at peace. She hopes he is with Kikyo. She despises her, but Inuyasha loved her, and she loved him in her own way, so they deserve to be happy at least in the afterlife. She wishes the others to be with them.

She truly wishes they could not see her at this moment. She has never looked more defeated, and she has never felt gloomier.

She wonders why Naraku did not finish her off.

Overall, she hopes no one learns what is going on in her mind. Not her family, her friends, or anyone that ever laid eyes on her. They should remember her as a happy creature. Maybe she will join them when she dies. She casts that thought down. Then she laughs, except it hurts and it comes out as a moan of pain. Wouldn't they be somewhere close to hell if she were with them? They deserve better, and maybe she did, once.

She still deserves something good because she has sacrificed so much, left her real life behind, and she was even leaving her body in a time that is not hers. Is that enough? What else can anyone want from her?

Fuck it all.

Yes, she was stupid. Yes, she was naïve and idiotic. However, she tried her best, and she would have gladly suffered all this on her own, a thousand more things than this, if only her friends had been spared.

She is not lucky enough to end up where the rest are going. Someone will mistake her case, and she will end up in a horrible place.

It is a fact, and she accepts it. Who would have thought lying on your own pool of blood would give you another perspective of your actions? Nothing she has done has brought her true happiness. She had once, when she was not dying in such a horrible, painful way, thought that it had all been worthy.

The lost time in her own era. The long walks that blistered her feet. The dark, freezing nights. Days without food. Danger always lurking in the corners, waiting for the right moment to have her.

It had all worth it because she had thought she was making someone happy.

Whom was she kidding?

Now, she knows better.

Shippo wasn't happy. Miroku wasn't happy. Sango wasn't happy. Inuyasha wasn't happy. She wasn't happy.

No one was happy.

There was no happiness. There was only duty and honor and desperation to kill Naraku, complete the pearl, and achieve their utopian dreams.

Kagome's world is becoming darker. The pain is slowly disappearing. She is close to her death.

She can see them all in their last seconds, can see their pain, their sacrifice, she can see them all clearly now that her turn is approaching.

She can recall everything that just happened, and she does not want to, she pushes against the horrifying images with all she has. She wants a moment of peace. She wants to remember them happy. She wishes to forget their last moments. She does not want to remember them when they were all bloodied and dying.

She wants only to remember their good times.

Being near death makes you a bit insane. Unfortunately, it does not make you insane enough to let you forget exactly why you end up the way you do. Why exactly you are dying.

It is a pity; Kagome could really do without the last few hours of her existence.

It is the beginning of autumn. The leaves are starting to fall. The sky is blue. The sun is up high. There is a chilly air, not enough to freeze you, but enough to cool you down. It is a pretty day when she finds herself surrounded by her own blood, minutes left of her existence.

She will not be remembered.

Kagome chokes on her own pain at the realization. All she did, all her sacrifices…

She will not be remembered.

Then, she is confused. The pain, she realizes with shock, is no longer there anymore, and her vision is coming back… what the hell?

Then she sees a pair of golden eyes, and she thinks Inuyasha, but something is those is not Inuyasha, and more shock comes as she realizes it is Sesshoumaru.

She lies on a pool of blood, and he stares at her, watching her with those golden eyes that are so much Inuyasha and not at all him, and she opens her mouth to say something, but it never comes out because death takes her in just that moment.

Kagome is no more.


Uff, after months of being absent, the first chapter is over. I think this is going to be one of those long, complicated stories. I'm looking forward to writing it. Anyway, hope you liked it, as always review, and...

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!!!!