Just some seriously tooth-rotting fluff for the week of Valentines day! :) Enjoy!
Note: The document manager here hates me and always removes my apostrophes and my quote marks, as well as my "..."s. So, if you spot something I missed while painstakingly fixing every dialogue sentence, please let me know! (And review because it brings me joy.)
It was a very crisp winter morning, much like many others. Sesshomaru was an authority on this fact, as he had seen many of them. This morning, however, was more different than any other morning the dog demon had experienced. He stepped lightly through the woods, mind focused on one. The priestess.
Prior to the time recently spent training, he had been watching her for months. Some days it would be a mere glimpse of a smile flashed to one of her pack mates, and others, full nights spent watching over her in sleep. Sesshomaru had taken it upon himself to protect her from what his wayward brother couldnt. He let out a slight snort as he continued on toward his destination. Surely he was the greatest hypocrite to walk the earth.
Sesshomaru did not even have it in him to deny that he had more than a slight attraction to the woman anymore. Arguing with his feelings was getting him absolutely nowhere. Thinking of his great and terrible father rationalized his opinion. After all, was the Dog General more remembered for his might or his choice in a second mate? It was most certainly the former and not the latter, for who referred to him as anything but 'great and terrible?' The current Lord of the West knew he was close to becoming equal to his fathers strength and stature, but it seemed that he was becoming like the long dead demon in more ways than one.
It had been a long time since he had seen or scented her. She would likely not be much impressed with his newly found power if he deigned to show it off. Perhaps that was why Sesshomaru found her so appealing. Power was something he used to believe all humans lusted over with unchecked appetites. He discovered through the observation of the woman that that belief was inaccurate. Kagome herself did not desire power in the least, yet held a significant amount. Sesshomaru watched her flawless hold over her mismatched little pack, a hold that was kept secure by mere kindnesses and smiles. He used to scoff, but then soon realized that he too was pulled inexplicably toward her in a way he knew could not be undone.
She had this gift of drawing the attention of many; Sesshomaru was not the only one affected. He watched the ridiculous wolf prince and his followers fawn over the girl as they came and went. He watched the poison master as he too was drawn to the priestess. That particular incident was one where Sesshomaru had been forced to step in, much to the confusion of the human woman. Luckily he had been able to leave quickly without raising too much suspicion.
Sesshomaru found himself acting remarkably skittish towards the woman. The only reason for it was one he loathed to think about. He, the merciless ruler of the West, did not think himself worthy of the attentions of a mere human. He was a killer; perfection, as his name defined. There were scores of souls sent to Hell by his sword, but instead of feeling the sense of accomplishment his actions used to bring, he felt a dark and painful feeling akin to shame. Granted, he never went out and cut down people for fun, but the priestess seemed to go out of her way to make a situation as free of death as possible.
She was painfully innocent and sweet, everything that the demon lord was not. He did not see where it would be possible for someone like him to gain her attention. So, Sesshomaru resigned himself to watching from afar, an action that only grew harder as time passed.
This was exactly why the dog demon was striding gracefully through the trees towards the clearing where the old well lay. He had seen her disappear into it many a time, finally figuring out for himself that she was not of this era, but from the future. This information made the girl even more fascinating to think about, which is something he did. Too often. That said, he simply could no longer stay away, especially after such a long absence on his part.
The only thing that might become a problem was his unusual lack of a plan. He was a seasoned warrior and a tactical genius. He always had an agenda, but today, nothing. Perhaps there was no better time than the present to work on his improvisational skills. It could be that the priestess would find his lack of cold, calculating confidence endearing. The demon lord swallowed. Were his palms sweating?
Wiping his hands briefly on his hakama, Sessomaru moved towards the clearing that housed the well. He was slightly dismayed to see the woman there before him, but all that development meant is that he would not have to wait for God knows how long for her to show up. He was more dismayed to scent and spot fresh tears upon her cheeks. Steeling himself, Sesshomaru entered the clearing, hoping that she would take his presence well.
Kagome sat propped up against the far side of the well, wiping tears away with her voluminous sleeve. She hated these clothes.
With Naraku's defeat and Kagomes miraculous return to the feudal era after three years, Kagome thought naively that her fairytale ending would commence after setting foot outside of the well. Now, she felt that she could understand Kikyo's wish to become an ordinary woman quite intimately.
She had graciously accepted the request of the village that she become their priestess, but it was becoming quite clear to her that she was not cut out for this job. She had seen death in her travels, but she spent the week before trying to heal a group of warriors that had managed to escape a slaughter at the hands of a rival lord.
It was this particular group of dying men that made Kagome realize that she didnt have the fortitude necessary to handle such a thing regularly. She didn't mind bandaging up a few wounds, but the death rattles and fatal injuries of the samurai kept her from sleeping properly since she dealt with them.
Kagome was exhausted. She looked down at her dusty and blistered feet, encased in a pair of roughly hewn clogs, and then at her roughened hands. Frustration rose up within her. She was tired of her endless duties, and this way of life was proving even more difficult to adjust to because of her dwindling supplies from the future.
It was finally settling in that she would not be able to go home, or enjoy something as simple as toilet paper, for the rest of her life, and that thought was extremely overwhelming. She needed some time alone to settle these thoughts so that it wouldnt interfere with her duties.
"A spoiled little future brat. That's what I sound like," she thought, resting her chin on her hand. She really didn't mean to sound like that, and generally she didn't, but today she was going to have a pity party, and no one, not Inuyasha with his gruff method of cheering her up, not any pious villager, was going to stop her until she was done wallowing in her own self pity for just a little while.
It had been about an hour, she realized, looking at her cracked watch. Perhaps it was time to return to the village.
Sniffing delicately, she wiped her nose with a sleeve and stood, stroking the well-worn wood of the well fondly. Then she heard the gentle rustling of silk. Freezing, she immediately caught sight of Sesshomaru entering the clearing, but he looked unlike any Sesshomaru she had seen previously.
Instead of his trademark red and white, Sesshomaru was wearing charcoal gray, a color that caused his silver hair, which was swept back into a low ponytail, to stand out more starkly than she thought possible. His armor was missing, and his usual yellow and royal blue sash had been replaced by a soft looking sky blue and black combination. She wondered why he was dressed so strangely.
"Lord Sesshomaru," She said, pausing before stating, "We havent seen you in a long time." The dog demon merely nodded and stepped closer, inspecting her tear stained face silently. Feeling exposed, Kagome turned back towards the well. "Are you looking for Rin?"
"You are upset," he observed, canting his head ever so slightly to the side.
"Yes...well, sort of," Kagome murmured, playing with an errant thread on one of her sleeves. "I'm just tired, that's all. Permanent life here is just a little unsettling."
"You no longer return to your world on the other side of the well?" he asked, letting Kagome know that he was perfectly aware of the well and its abilities.
"Oh, you weren't here," she realized, turning to regard him. "The well closed for good while you were away. I...won't be able to go home again." She closed her eyes then, the finality of her statement seeping in. She hurriedly wiped another tear from the corner of her eye.
"You miss your family," he stated, daring to step a little closer.
"Yes," she agreed, "That, and right now I really wish I had a pomegranate." She sighed, remembering the garnet seeds packed tightly within the tough skin of her favorite fruit. She had been craving one for months now, ever since she realized that it was the season for them at the supermarket back home.
"A pomegranate," he repeated, suddenly recalling an event from the past. His father had gone on a diplomatic trip when he was very young. He remembered gleaming red seeds in the palm of the Dog Generals hand, picking them up with tiny claws to inspect. The image brought to mind a sweet taste with a hint of tartness.
"They're my favorite," she said quietly, bringing Sesshomaru from his brief reverie to describe the fruit.
"I have enjoyed a pomegranate before," he told her. "Long ago, when I was a child."
Her lips parted, surprised perhaps that he would share something like that with her. Then she gave him a small smile. "How long has it been since you have had one?"
"Seven hundred years, approximately."
"Wow." She breathed, smile growing wider. "I guess I shouldnt really complain, then, since I've been able to have at least one every year until now." She paused then, straightening her previously slumped posture. "That actually cheered me up a little. Thanks, Lord Sesshomaru!" She laughed then, patting him briefly on the arm in passing as she headed towards the village.
Sesshomaru merely stood there for a moment before walking in the opposite direction, back towards his castle. It seemed that his idea to be spontaneous was successful, in part.
Two weeks later, Kagome was walking through the ice covered rice paddies when she noticed a figure with silver hair standing near the hill leading to the well. Waving briefly, she decided to go greet Sesshomaru. It appeared that he was back to appearing with some sort of frequency, which was nice for Rin, who had been asking about him increasingly.
When she arrived, she noticed that once again Sesshomaru wasnt in his armor. He stood with his back to her, facing the valley where the village lay.
"Hi again, Lord Sesshomaru," Kagome said politely, approaching him. "Rin has been asking about you."
"Hn," he replied, turning to face her. "I imagine that she has."
"I thought that you would have seen her the last time you were here," she said to him, confused about his appearance the two weeks before. Why had he come, if not for Rin? Unless...he had come to see her and cheer her up? Was that even possible? Kagome wondered if her imagination was running away with her. Sure, for over a year she had been having quite the crush on him, but she always imagined the Lord of the West to simply be unattainable, and put her feelings in the back of her mind.
"Lady Kagome," he addressed her, shocking the priestess to attention with both the use of her name and the respectful honorific. "I have a...request of you."
"You do?" she asked confusedly.
"Yes," he answered, looking once again out at the valley before approaching and looking into her upturned face. To Kagomes shock, the lightest of blushes colored the tips of his elven ears and the apples of his narrow cheeks.
She watched as the cold demon Lord reached into his haori sleeve and pulled out a large round object. He offered the item to her with an outstretched hand.
"Oh," she said, breathless. "You found a pomegranate? For me?" A blush colored her cheeks as well as she looked up at him, smiling broadly when he nodded, speaking formally, but gently.
"It would bring this Sesshomaru pleasure to share a pomegranate with the Lady Kagome."
"And it would bring Kagome pleasure to share one with Lord Sesshomaru," she said back, blushing all the more. She knew that pomegranates were native to parts of the Middle East, as well as Northern India, and was deeply touched by the fact that Sesshomaru traveled all that way, just to bring her the fruit.
"Come, then," he said, heading back into the forest and what seemed to be toward the God Tree. A pair of the roots at the foot of the tree had been wiped off and covered by embroidered cloths, making Kagome realize just how much thought had been put into this moment. Sesshomaru waited for Kagome to sit before following suit.
He pulled a piece of cloth from his sleeve and draped it over his knee, over which he proceeded to cut slowly around the circumference of the fruit, breaking it in half easily, with barely any juice escaping from ruptured seeds. Silently, he passed the half to her with the seeds gleaming directly from it, without any waxy membrane to hide the treat.
"Thank you," she said with emotion, looking down fondly at it before plucking a single seed from where it lay nestled and popping it into her mouth. Sesshomaru watched as her eyes closed and she let out a sound that caused his blood to grow hot.
Opening her eyes, she smiled at Sesshomaru and moved off of the root to stand before him. Taking her hand in his, she squeezed gently. "This means a lot, Sesshomarubut why did you go all that way for me?"
"Because," he stated, with some difficulty, looking her square in the eyes with his own amber ones, which were roiling with emotion. "I am infatuated with you."
Sesshomaru was not sure what Kagomes reaction would be to his confession, and so he waited with bated breath while she stood before him, mouth slightly open. He shifted uncomfortably, preparing for rejection. What he wasn't expecting was a pair of lips to come crashing down on his and a pair of soft arms to encircle his neck. After freezing for a moment with surprise, Sesshomaru wrapped his arms around her waist and kissed her back fervently, not caring that his half of the pomegranate fell into the mostly melted snow. Kagomes half fell as well as she moved to tangle her fingers in his silver hair.
After a moment, Kagome pulled back, looking dazedly back at Sesshomaru with slightly swollen lips, breathing heavily. "I have also been pretty infatuated with you for a while," she admitted, blushing again. "I honestly never thought that you would return those feelings." She laughed then, moving to kiss him firmly on the cheek, then hug him again, resting her chin on his shoulder.
Sesshomaru opened his mouth to return the sentiment but was interrupted by her gasp.
"Oh no! We dropped our pomegranate...and its all muddy..."
It was Sesshomarus turn to laugh, a deep chuckle that made Kagome melt into his arms. "Did you think that I would travel all that way and only return with one?" He asked her, while bringing a hand up to stroke her dark hair. "I had an entire tree planted in one of my gardens upon arriving back, silly woman."
R&R! 3 ArgPirates