Disclaimer: I do not own Inuyasha nor do I profit from this story in any way besides my own personal satisfaction.
A young woman stretched lazily in a twin sized bed, the light filtrating from the curtains and purring exactly over the brown eyes. As she removed her childish covers, she rubbed her eyes much in the same fashion any toddler would. Her dark brown hair sticking to her face as her left cheek was still wet with her own saliva.
She paid no mind to her state of total derangement as she took a pair of mismatching socks from the floor and put a pink short over her teddy bear underwear. That day, like any other Sunday, she woke up to the smell of coffee and waffles. A special routine she and her father had established when her mother had passed away three years prior.
Good morning dad! – She said giving him an enthusiastic hug and a loud kiss on the cheek.
My dear Rin, how are you this fine morning sunshine? - said a middle aged man sitting by a rocking chair.
Ready to outshine everyone! - She said loudly as she skipped to the kitchen. She poured maple syrup over the freshly made waffles and set out to look for her mug. Though there were plenty of mugs on the cupboards, she always used the one. It was the one her mother had given her when she started drinking coffee. She had always said it was an important step in every young lady's life.
She closed the last cupboard and went to ask her father if he had seen it. – Hey dad, have you seen my…- That's when she noticed the colorful hand-made designs of her mug sitting by his side, shattered.
Have I seen what darling? He said, not really turning his head her way, like he was trying to concentrate on her voice, and not on the sight of her.
Hmm… never mind dad, do you want me to pick that up for you? She said inching closer to her broken mug.
That would be very helpful dear. I don't know what happened, I just tripped and the mug fell from my hand, just like that- He said rocking back and forth like an old man- that's a shame, it was my favorite.
It's just a mug dad, there are a thousand others- she said quietly, taking the broken pieces of porcelain from the wooden floor - at least you didn't hurt yourself- she added
Yes, I'm quite fine myself…- he said after a little pause.
So it is getting worse
She finished picking up the remains of her mother's treasure deciding she would latter glue it together, then settled for another mug from the cupboards, just as she was about to close it, she realized his father's favorite mug had all the while been sitting in the same place where she usually kept hers.
There seemed to always be something new going on in the state army; there was always a bastard who was fool enough to challenge him. Not that he cared; after all, he always won. But sometimes, he got a little tired of having to set the example. That precise day was one of those times.
As per usual, Sundays were his days off. He had decided not to engage in more training as he usually did when given time for himself, so instead, he had gone to the local pub. His car rumbled quietly in the dark parking lot, if it could even be called that. The dirty roadway was almost enough to almost make him want to turn back to camp. Almost, but not quite.
He got out of his car, putting his keys inside his black trousers as he walked to the entrance of the badly decorated pub. The door man stank of alcohol, whereas the whole place was covered in the thick smoke of cigarette of every brand known in town. Costumers in the bar stool laughed loudly banging their hands on the counters while their generally unkempt bears rivaled that of prehistoric cave men. It was all very disgusting. But he refused to shudder as he walked to the bar, his heavy boots making no sound on the rough stone floor.
Shippo, attend the new customer- yelled someone from the other end of the bar stool- a grumping redhead made his way to him, still drying a green liquid on his tattered jeans
What can I get for you? - He asked, not really looking at him, but rather, picking something up from the floor.
Whiskey on the rocks- he responded in clipped tones, he didn't even want to know what the boy had been doing, but it seemed a non-prepared drink was a safer course.
Right away- he said bending over once again, until all he could see of him was a furry thing coming off the back of his jeans.
His golden eyes narrowed at the sight of it, but he decided not to give it much thought, as he noticed none of the other costumers seemed to mind it. He reclined on his chair, before noticing the wood cracked under his weight. Right before it collapsed, he leapt from it. Narrowing his eyes as the whole bar erupted in a series of laugher, snickers and banging all over the tables. He was being mocked. And he did not like it.
-what's wrong boy? You can't take a little prank? - said one of the men sitting on the near tables as he got up, knocking his chair over.
He had to cover his nose, as the foul smell of that man reached his nostrils. He smelled of beer, shit, vomit and rotting flesh, although he couldn't quite picture why someone would smell like that.
-I think he doesn't like you Mou- said another one by his side, cracking his knuckles in a way that reminded him of the Wild West.
-you don't like me boy? Is it because I'm not pretty like you? Maybe you could lend me some hair advice- said "Mou" eying his silver hair maliciously.
The bar was suddenly filled with the loud banging and the drunken laughs of all those around him. Apparently, they had no better thing to do than listen to a drunk speak.
He made an effort not to let his temper out. He breathed in and out I just came here to take some time off. He thought to himself, although he was usually not one to give people second chances. He decided to just take another seat on the bar stool ignoring the whistles and turning his back on the group that had now gathered around him.
-hey! My friend's talking to you! - said the other one, raising his voice like he could possibly be offended by his attitude.
- I think he ignoring us Rem, maybe we should teach him a lesson on good manners- Mou said. At the lack of response from the cold stranger, he motioned for Rem and another one of the "regulars" to grab him from behind.
- I wouldn't do that if I were you- said a man at the far end of the stool. He recognized him from the camp. He was one of the captains from the army. Byakuya, if he remembered correctly.
- Or what? Are you gonna fight us? - said Rem, pointing his way.
- I said nothing of the sort, but don't say I didn't warn you- said the man in a sing-song voice.
Mou scoffed at Byakuya, mumbling something about getting him after they finished with the pretty boy, but then, as he prepared to grab him from behind, he fell short on his reach and broke his pinky on the counter. Everyone looked confused as the stranger kept on calmly sipping his whiskey. He had not moved, and yet, Mou had been unable to grab him.
-so much talk and you can't even measure your step? How pathetic! - He said coldly. Next thing he saw were Shippo's eyes going wide as Rem grabbed a chair and flung it to his back. Only to realize he was no longer sitting where he had moments ago and what was even worse, Moe was so close, he got pieces of wood all over his stained shirt.
-what the…- but Rem didn't get a chance to finish. His throat constricted painfully around the little air he had used to talk, as one single hand lifted him from the floor by his neck.
Then the third man accompanying them tried to punch him, but he grabbed his fist mid-air and squeezed it so hard, the man began to crumble until he screamed from pain. If the sudden crack they heard was any indication, he had broken a bone in the man's hand.
You Monster! What have to done to Gin? Yelled Rem kicking his feet helplessly as he took a glance at the sickly twisted fingers in Ginkotsu's hand.
Remarkable, he can still talk. That won't do- he tightened his hand around Rem's head cracking his fingers as he sensed an approaching Mou from his side –fool
He released Gin's hand and punched Mou's chin, all the while using Rem's hanging body as defense against anyone who dared come near him. He heard Shippo shout at him as Moukotsu's body knocked over a few glasses in the stool, falling unconscious on the act.
-Sesshoumaru-Sama, I don't think anyone here would dare challenge your power, please release the poor bastard before you end up destroying the rest of the bar, some of us quite enjoy coming here- said Byakuya smiling widely from his end of the stool.
He scoffed at the audacity of him, but decided he had had enough for the night, the dropped Rem's now almost blue body and drowned the rest of the whiskey in one good swallow.
He set it down on the stool and dumped the money twice the drink's worth on its side, watching as Shippo carefully took the money and scurried to find the change. By the time he came back, Sesshoumaru was already gone.
That very same night on the other side of town, Rin sat on the living room, watching the news on the TV, apparently, the state army would be leaving town in another two days, they were still trying to recruit people into the ranks. She signed. As she flipped through the channels, she had to wonder once more what she was going to do. Her father had not done much for the entire day, and she had a feeling she knew why as she heard him stumble on the furniture of his study.
Their financial situation wasn't improving any, bills were piling up, and no one wanted to hire her father because of his condition, which by the looks of things, was getting worse. Fear started gripping her heart. She would be out of high school very soon, she had barely enough funds to go to college, and she couldn't leave her father to fair on his own. Happiness depends only on you Rin-chan... Don't let life take that smile away from your face- that's what her mother would have said.
She stopped zapping, took a deep breath and set her mind. She decided to confront him on the matter, subtly. She got up from the couch and walked quietly on her furry slippers to her father's study.
I need to get him to admit it to me; otherwise he won't take my help. I can't let you go through this alone dad- she hesitated for a moment on the handle to her father's study, but finally decided there was no other way. She tightened her fist at her side and nodded to herself, finding her resolve to open the door.
He barely registered the sound of the door opening and he moved his head subtly, trying to place the source, without being too obvious about it.
-Hey dad, do you think this shirt looks good on me? - She asked tentatively.
- Yes dear, everything looks gorgeous on you- he said readily, not even bothering to pretend he was looking.
-guess I'll have to be a little cleverer- but some girl at school said this is really not my color, I wouldn't want to look pale on the yearbook photo- she said, trying not to whine too much.
- That's ridiculous dear, every color looks good on your lovely face- he said eyeing her shirt for the first time since she entered the room
- Really, Beige? Don't you think it makes me look pale? - She said looking at him closely.
He shook his head and lowered his eyes- no dear, beige is just fine. He said, smiling at her.
Are you sure? What do you think about this one? She said taking another shirt from behind her back. Doesn't blue make me look better?
He doubted for a moment- Yes dear of course- he said, becoming a little agitated.
So, which one do you choose? This or that one? She said, gesturing between the two shirts
The blue one- he said
Got you- there's no blue shirt dad- she said sadly, putting the pink blouse over his desk.
Of course there is, you just said…oh… you tricked me- he hung his head low, turning to look at his embroiled night shoes.
When did it happen, dad? - She said softly, kneeling in front of him trying to look in his eyes. He no longer pretended to see her, but rather, his eyes looked straight through her.
Last week…but today, it got worse, the doctor said it could happen. How did you realize?
You drank your coffee from my mug; that was my first clue- she said, smiling sadly, although he couldn't see her.
I'm sorry sweetheart, I wanted to tell you, but I knew you would only worry too much. I'm fine, I'll figure something out. You just need to have faith- He said patting her head in what should have been a comforting gesture, had he not been utterly lost on where to find her.
No dad, please, let me help you. You've done enough for me; now let me do something for you. For once. I'll get a job. I'll earn enough money to pay for the eye surgery; just trust me on this, ok? - She kissed his forehead and ran out of the study before he could say something to stop her.
She wiped the tear threatening to roll down her cheek and grabbed the phone from the receiver; she called a friend from school- hey Kohaku? Remember what you said about getting in the army? Count me in, tomorrow at 7. I'll wait for you at the front door.