They were, needless to say, stunned into a terse silence. The half light of the dawning sun filtered down on the two groups that had met in the clearing and bared the bizarre truth to their disbelieving eyes.

The shard hunt, as ever, had led to some unexpected happenings, least of all the joining of Sesshoumaru's pack with their little rag-tag group. But this, this took the biscuit.

They had happened across a meadow that was said to be cursed; the lone voice of a woman singing could be heard every night of the waning moon. Her voice beautiful but ethereal had driven away the village that had recently lived to the west and the village that dwelled in the north had requested their services.

So- due to the possibility of shards being involved- the newly enlarged group had made their way down towards the clearing.

What they hadn't expected was a ghost. Actually, it was the ghost of a Yokai seer who had tossed her silkily honeysuckle hair at them and declared them an 'unsuitable audience' for her song.

Inuyasha had immediately taken umbrage at her comment and, proving her right, proceeded to cuss at her violently until Kagome shut him up with a healthy dose of sitting.

The ghost had taken and intense and sudden dislike to their badmouthed Hanyou (he seemed to have that effect on people). With the last vestiges of her waning power she had declared a curse on him.

"Until you have matured enough to allow the destinies to align, you will fall to the childish antics you display"

It had been a vague statement, yet it was delivered with such passion and rage. So when a blinding blue light engulfed their Hanyou friend they hadn't been surprised.

They were, however, stunned a few moments later, as the light dimmed and allowed them the privilege to see once again.

Where Inuyasha had one stood there was a pile of much abused fire-rat robes. The Tessaiga lay innocently on the ground.

Their first thoughts were that maybe the ghost had killed him, but that thought was quashed quickly as the bundle of clothes twitched and a pair of golden, very large eyes, stared up at Kagome for she was nearest to the bundle.

"Momma?" the bundle inquired in a tiny tremulous voice.

"Inuyasha?" Kagome asked in return.

Taking this for confirmation, the tiny bundle moved again and a tiny toddler, who was also naked, jumped at Kagome and wrapped its tiny arms around her neck.

"Momma!" the child squealed happily as Kagome reflexively wrapped her arms around the child. He was naked and it was freezing, so Kagome abruptly walked over to her bag- as if on autopilot as she hadn't quite realised what was even happening yet- and pulled out a blanket.

Swaddling the small child in the gigantic, and ironically red, blanket she turned to her friends. "What in the world?" she asked.

"Is that Inuyasha?" Shippo enquired as he hopped onto Kagome's shoulder. The Miko and the Yokai both peered down into the child's face and he blinked at them innocently.

There was no denying this was Inuyasha: the same large, golden, expressive, eyes; the same heavy curtain of white hair; the same tiny twitching dog ears atop his fluffy head. Kagome tentatively, as if afraid he would revert back to his normal form and yell at her, reached out and stroked a tiny ear. The toddler giggled and flicked the appendage and she smiled warmly in return.

"Slightly more friendly," Kagome proclaimed, "but definitely Inuyasha"

"The child still smells like the half-breed" Sesshoumaru offered.

"Inuyasha is a child now?" Miroku turned thoughtful. "I didn't know a spirit was capable of such a thing. The power she had left behind should have been residual form her death, not nearly enough to do that." He gestured at Inuyasha helplessly.

Sango bit her lip in worry for her friend.

Sesshoumaru interjected calmly. "The spirit was a demon, therefore more powerful even once deceased. You also fail to take into account that she was a seer; that increases her power exponentially"

"So she's cursed Inuyasha into a child?" Kagome asked, her shocked expression shifting into one of panic.

"It would seem so." the Yokai nodded his head gravely and snuck a glance at the Miko to make sure she wasn't hyperventilating or something equally as foolish.

"Indefinitely?" Sango asked in horror.

"Until he has gained the lessons he needs to allow destiny to happen" Miroku reminded her. "Not indefinitely."

Shippo rolled his eyes. "But he has to learn something!" he protested "Inuyasha is allergic to learning stuff!"

Kagome stroked the top of the child's head and smiled as he purred and leaned into her hand. She had a brief wicked thought of Sesshoumaru allowing her to do that to him and blushed slightly."I think that this miniature version of Inuyasha will be perfectly willing."

Miroku smiled softly. "It would seem so"

"We should stop looking for the shards until Inuyasha is better" Sango decided "we can't do this without him."

Kagome nodded softly "How about we go back to Kaede's village and set up camp in the meadow west of it?"

"Sounds good." Miroku nodded his agreement.

"What about you Sesshoumaru-sama?" Kagome asked shyly. "Will you be coming?"

He gave her a disinterested look. "There is nothing else to do." He acquiesced.

They began moving, Rin, finding the new tiny Inuyasha completely fascinating, walked beside Kagome merely to gaze at the cherub-like face of the toddler.

The silence was peaceful, instead of strained as it probably has been considering the group consisted of old enemies. But without Inuyasha's constant grumbling the air seemed cleaner and the group more relaxed.

As the crested the hill that over looked Kaede's village the heavens opened. Rin squealed and ran to hide in the blankets on the dragon steed.

The child in Kagome's arms wrinkled his nose and snuffled for a moment before letting out a small wail as the rain increased in intensity.

They were all completely saturated within seconds as the rain began to fall hard enough that the group looked like they had just been for a rather bizarre clothed swim in a lake.

Kagome blushed as Sesshoumaru's clothes –purest white silks- abruptly became see through, never noticing the way his own gaze was riveted on her equally see through shirt.

The little one began to cry with vengeance as the sound of the rushing rain reached his sensitive ears.

Kagome laughed, a happy bubbly noise that made the babe blink up at her in confusion, and she spun across the grass off the hill laughing again in delight as the rain caressed her face.

The babe made a sound of confused delight. "Momma!"

"Rain, rain," she chanted as she touched her nose to his. "go away, come again another day!"

At her words, as if waiting for her command, the brief shower stopped as abruptly as it had begun and the sun shone through the clouds once more.

Spinning back to face the group in surprised delight, Kagome grinned, her cheeks flushed and her eyes glittering. She was magnificent.

And not even Sesshoumaru could deny it. As much as he had tried...

A/N: I don't own Inuyasha.