Disclaimer: I don't own these characters. I just wrote this story for fun.
Grrr… I hate moonless nights.
Inuyasha, his silver hair turned black and his dog-ears resembling normal human one's, lay in the grass on the hilltop just beyond Kaede's hut staring up at the stars.
It was a surprisingly clear night, even without the moon, and so after supper he, Kagome, and Shippo had decided to do a bit of relaxing before bed.
"I hope Miroku and Sango are all right," Kagome said, from beside him.
The monk and demon-slayer had gone to a nearby village that was rumoured to be infected with a host of demons.
Because it had been so close to the new moon, Kagome had decided she, Inuyasha, and Shippo would remain behind.
"Don't worry about those two," he said, rolling his eyes, "they can take care of themselves."
"Yeah," Shippo, on his other side, piped up, "the only thing they'd have to worry about is Sango slapping Miroku for touching her bottom again…."
Inuyasha and Kagome both nodded in agreement with this. The girl then let out a big yawn.
"Why don't you go turn in?" Inuyasha told her. "You spent all day studying for that big test you got coming up and then helped the old hag make her medicines. Go get some shut eye already."
The girl smiled. "What about you?" she asked, worriedly.
Inuyasha glared at her. "Just cuz I'm mortal tonight don't mean I ain't still a man," he reminded her. "I can handle anything that happens."
"Besides," Shippo piped up again, "I'll be here to protect him."
Inuyasha glared at him. "That'll be the day that you protect me, imp," he said, sneering.
The little fox boy pouted. "Humph," he said, crossing his arms.
Kagome smiled at their antics. "All right," she said, getting up. "I'll go. Good night."
Shippo hopped up and jumped into her arms. "Good night, Mama," he kissed her cheek. "Sweet dreams."
Kagome returned his kiss. "Sweet dreams to you to, Shippo," she told him, setting him down. "Good night, Inuyasha."
"Night," the now mortal hanyou said, waving.
"Aren't you gonna kiss her good night?" Shippo asked, frowning.
Inuyasha and Kagome both turned beat red. "Can it, you little imp," he growled at the boy, "before you get sent to bed. Got it?"
Shippo sat back down, and pouted. "Humph," he said, crossing his arms.
Kagome smiled. "Sweet dreams, Inuyasha," she said, bending down and kissing him on the cheek.
"Uh, yeah, s-sure," Inuyasha stammered, his voice catching a bit. "Nice dreams to you, too."
Kagome smiled even more and then turned to go inside to her bedroll.
Shippo snickered beside him. "You look silly," he said, giggling into his hands.
Inuyasha glared at him. "You want a knot on your head?" he asked, threateningly.
Shippo grinned. "You said you weren't gonna do that anymore," he reminded him, smirking.
Inuyasha smirked back. "That's right," he said, grinning wickedly, "I said I'd whack your butt instead. C'mere!"
Shippo hopped up, grabbed his bottom, and squealed, "No! No!" He started running around in circles while Inuyasha chased him.
When he finally caught him, he grabbed him by the tail and lifted him 'til he was looking him in the face.
"Now then," Inuyasha said, smirking, "you were saying?"
Shippo smiled and placed both hands on the hanyou's cheeks.
"I love you, Papa," he said, and then promptly kissed him on the nose.
Inuyasha blushed almost as much as he did when Kagome had kissed him.
"All right, imp," he growled, embarrassed, "none of that. It's hot, let's go for a swim."
With that, he headed into the forest to a nearby pond that they frequented.
He and the young kitsune quickly stripped and dove into the cool water.
"Ah," Inuyasha said, as he backstroked along, "this feels great."
"Yeah," Shippo agreed, swimming beside him, "but we should have invited Kagome along."
Inuyasha missed a stroke and sank into the water, coming back up sputtering and swearing.
He glared at Shippo.
The little kit blinked at him.
"What'd I say?" he asked, innocently.
"Nothin'," he growled, resuming his swimming, "I'll tell you when you're older, imp."
"Humph," Shippo said, pouting, "you always say that."
"Just shut up and swim," the hanyou ordered, "otherwise we're headin' back and you're goin' to bed."
"Okay, okay," the fox boy said, sighing. He resumed swimming beside his 'papa'.
They stayed at the pond for at least an hour, before getting out and drying off.
Shippo let out large yawn just as he finished dressed. Inuyasha smirked.
"C'mon, imp," he said, scooping the kit into the crook of his arm, "it's time to hit the sack."
"Ah, but I'm not sleepy," Shippo whined, sulking, "can't we stay up a little while longer?"
"Nope," Inuyasha said, earning a glare from the kit—which he, of course, ignored.
They started back toward Kaede's hut, but half way there Shippo's ears perked up and so did he.
"Hey, what's that?" he asked, getting onto Inuyasha's shoulder.
"What?" Inuyasha asked, puzzled. "I don't hear nothin'…"
"That's cuz your mortal right now," Shippo told him, "there's definitely something over there." He pointed to a dark patch of trees.
"Well, whatever it is," Inuyasha told him, "it can wait 'til tomorrow."
"What if it's a demon," Shippo said, "the sooner it's dead the better. You wait here and I'll check it out."
Before the hanyou could stop him, he leapt down and began racing on all fours towards the dark patch of woods.
"Shippo!" Inuyasha growled. "Get your furry little butt back here!"
He started after the kit, sensing that something definitely wasn't right.
Damn it, Shippo, when I get my hands on you…
Unfortunately, whatever he was going to do to the kit would have to wait.
It turned out what Shippo had heard was a demon; albeit, a small one in the form of a weasel, and it had the young fox kit in its grip squeezing the life out of him.
Inuyasha seethed inside. Damn this moonless night straight to Hell!
Here he was, powerless as a mortal, while some weak pathetic little rodent of a demon tortured his poor pup…
Inuyasha narrowed his eyes. Nobody was going to hurt his kid. Ever.
"Hey, butt ugly," he growled at the floating weasel. "How about you pick on somebody your own size!"
The weasel demon glanced up at him, smirking. "Your nothing more than a pathetic half-demon," it growled. "This weakling kitsune may not be much of a meal but he will be more satisfying than you."
Inuyasha reached down and picked up a large stone. "Well, how about trying this for an appetizer," he yelled, throwing the rock at the weasels head.
It hit its mark, causing the weasel to drop the fox boy.
"Shippo!" Inuyasha yelled, his heat leaping into his throat as the fox boy just lay there. "Shippo, are you all right!?"
The weasel hissed and growled. "I would worry about myself before worrying about him!" it snared, lunging for the hanyou.
Shippo leapt up. "Fox fire!" he yelled, sending blue flames at the weasel.
They engulfed him, causing him to squeal and snarl.
Inuyasha took the sheath of his sword and brought it down with all his might upon the weasel's head.
The rodent demon toppled to the crowd, dead.
"Humph," the hanyou grunted, "not so tough, after all." He gave the dead demon a kick before it disintegrated.
"Yeah," Shippo said, smiling, "we sure showed him, didn't we?"
Inuyasha glared down at him, cross his arms over his chest.
"What?" Shippo asked, puzzled.
Inuyasha sat down on a rock and motioned him over with a finger. "C'mere, imp," he growled.
Shippo gulped. "Uh, why?" he asked, hesitantly.
Inuyasha raised an eyebrow. "Cuz, you're gettin' a spankin'," he told him, growling.
The kitsune's eyes widened and he automatically grabbed his bottom. "What!?" he yelped. "Why!?"
"You even have to ask?" Inuyasha growled at him. "You went running straight into danger after I told you not to!"
"B-But," Shippo wailed, "there was a demon!"
"Yeah," Inuyasha snorted, "and it could easily have been dealt with tomorrow. Now, get over here!"
Shippo shook his head. "P-Please, I-I'm sorry," he begged. "I won't do it again, I promise!"
Inuyasha snorted. "Yeah, right," he growled, rolling his eyes. "Shippo, if I have to come and get you…"
The little fox boy let out a strangled whimper and then obediently came within reach of the black-haired hanyou.
Inuyasha reached down and picked him up by his tail and then stood up.
"W-What are you doin'?" Shippo asked, miserably.
"Gettin' a switch," Inuyasha growled, pulling off a switch from one of the nearby trees.
Sitting back down, he placed the sniffling fox boy over his lap and then stripped the leaves off the switch.
"You know better than to run head first into a dangerous situation, Shippo," Inuyasha scolded, baring the boy's bottom and moving his furry tail out of the way.
"I-I'm sorry," Shippo sniffed.
"Yeah, you're always sorry when you're gettin' a whippin'," the hanyou growled, raising the switch back.
He brought it down across the boy's bottom with a SWISH!
Shippo hissed at the sting it caused. It was even worse than Inuyasha's hand!
"I'm sorry! I'm sorry!" he wailed, kicking his small legs. "P-Papa, please, I'm sorryyyyyyy!"
Inuyasha ignored the kit's squeals and continued to bring the switch down upon his bottom.
After about ten strokes, he began targeting the sensitive under-curve.
"That weasel may have been a minor demon," he growled, still spanking, "but it could still have killed you, Shippo!"
"Ah," Shippo groaned, after a particular hard stroke, "p-p-please! I'm sorry!"
Inuyasha sighed. "It's almost over, imp," he told him, and then brought the switch down five more times.
After that, he tossed the switch away and fixed the boy's breeches back into place.
Lifting the kitsune off his lap, he hugged him to his chest.
Shippo clung to him, sobbing.
"T-That hurt!" he wailed. "W-Worse than your hand! Why'd you use a switch? Y-You never did before!"
"I'm mortal right now," Inuyasha told him, rubbing his back comfortingly, "and I don't have my usual strength. You're an imp, but you're still a full fledged demon. A mortal's hand wouldn't make that great an impact, so I had to improvise."
Shippo continued to cry into his chest. "I-I'm sorry, Papa," he sniffed.
"I know," Inuyasha told him, quietly, "but you scared me tonight, Shippo. What if that demon had been worse than just a weasel? I'm mortal right now, what if I hadn't been able to save you? As it was, it nearly squeezed the life out of you…"
Shippo looked up at him, seeing tears in his eyes. He gasped.
Inuyasha had never cried before…not even over Kikyo or his mother!
"I hate being mortal," Inuyasha told him, "even more now than before."
"W-Why?" Shippo asked, rubbing his face to get the tear off.
"Cuz, Imp," the black haired hanyou said, "when I'm mortal I can't protect those I care about. Heck, you all protect me and I hate that. It's my job to do the protecting, not yours."
"But we love you," Shippo told him, "that's why we try to protect you."
"Yeah," Inuyasha told him, "and I love you all, too, I guess."
Shippo yawned. "I'm tired now," he said, "can we go to bed?"
Inuyasha snorted. "Yeah, Imp," he said, "let's get you to bed."
He stood up and started out of the woods and back towards Kaede's hut.
"What?" Inuyasha asked, raising an eyebrow at him.
"Since it's already bed time," he said, happily, "that means I don't have to go to bed early tonight!"
"Uh huh," Inuyasha told him, "that just means you'll be going to bed early tomorrow night instead."
"Ah," Shippo groaned. "Do I gotta?"
Inuyasha chuckled. "Course you gotta, Imp," he told him.
"You're mean," the fox boy grumbled, pouting.
"Yep, I am," the hanyou said, smirking.
Shippo stuck his tongue out at him.
"You want me to borrow some of that soap the old hag makes?" Inuyasha asked, warningly.
The fox boy quickly shook his head.
"Then keep your tongue behind your teeth where it belongs," the half-demon growled, "or else…"
Shippo sighed. "Inuyasha?" he asked, quietly.
"What is it, Imp?" the hanyou asked, tiredly. It had been a long day, even for him.
"Can we go hunting tomorrow?" the kitsune asked, hopefully.
"No," Inuyasha told him, firmly.
"Why not?" Shippo whined, sulking.
"Cuz you're staying inside all morning, that's why," Inuyasha told him. "No leaving the hut 'til after lunch."
"That's not fair!" Shippo exclaimed.
"Neither is life," the hanyou told him. "Deal with it."
"Humph," the kit pouted.
"We might go hunting after lunch," Inuyasha told him, smirking, "but that's only if you do as you're told."
Shippo smiled brightly. "I will, I will," he promised.
Inuyasha chuckled. "Yeah, right," he said, ruffling the boy's red hair, "I'll believe it when I see it, Imp."
"Hey!" Shippo said, glaring. "I am not an imp!"
"Course not," the hanyou said, entering the hut.
Kaede and Kagome were both sound asleep.
"Inuyasha?" Shippo asked in a whisper.
"Huh?" the half demon asked.
"Can I sleep with you tonight?"
"Sure, but don't get used to it."
Together they laid down on the third bedroll inside the hut.
"Night, Papa," Shippo said, closing his eyes. "Sweet dreams."
As the boy drifted off to sleep snuggled against him, Inuyasha smirked and shook his head again before closing his own eyes.