AN: My main goal here is to keep my favorite character in character so please enjoyand R&R!
Disclaimer: I own none of the Inuyasha characters
The moon hung high that night, the shape of it's light uncovered by darkness resembled that of a familiar birthmark standing proudly upon the forhead of a young demon lord. "What business could that old priestess possibly have with me," he pondered, as he looked past the field to the the small village his brother and his companions have come to call home.
He couldn't believe he was accepting the old woman's request to meet with him. There were more important matters at hand. Ever since the defeat of Naraku more and more demons have come out of hidding. They terrorized his and other lands, and tried to challenge his new strength. Sesshomaru glanced slightly at his bakuseiga resting at his hip. His pride swelled knowing that this powerful sword was made from him and it was his to wield and his alone.
That was that though, and Sesshomaru focused on what was happening now. He supposed curiosity got the better of him because he was not far form the priestess's hut. He thought, the old woman's intentions had better be good, or she would pay the price for wasting his time.
He took flight in the air flying torward the village. His thoughts were brought back only to that morning when he decided to have a bit of alone time from his own companions.
It started out as any other morning. Sesshomaru left Rin to her sleep and Jaken to his duty of watching over her while he himself scouted the area a bit. Though of course, who would ruin a quiet morning then his younger brother who humbly graced his presence by busting through the trees and landing in front of Sesshomaru. Dirt and dust scattered the area around them.
"That was a foolish way to gain the element of surprise," Sesshomaru stated, upon which he brought his hand to bakuseiga. Inuyasha gave him a ugly look, and spat out."Huh, as if wanting to fight you is the reason why I've been running around all night," Inuyasha looked into the eyes similar to his.
"You sure have been traveling to farther areas now that Naraku is gone". Sesshomaru grunted, and turned his back to his brother. Leave it up to the half breed to not be able to sense that more demons have been reeking havoc among farther territories thanks the the dissapearence of Naraku. "So," finally came a replie as the elder brother faced the younger one. "you came all this way just to tell me that".
"As if," Inuyasha said. "The only reason I came to find you is because Kaede wanted to have a word with you". Sesshomaru blinked at his response "That old priestess" he thought. "What business does she have with me?". "The heck if I know she just said that there is an important matter to discuss with you," Inuyasha said as he turned to leave. He stopped though, when he heard his brother speak in a rather harsher tone then usual. "Hmm why should I go, seems like nothing more then a waste of my time".
"Like I said, I don't know, but she looked pretty serious," Inuyasha looked over his shoulder to his brother."So I would hurry to the village to get it over with if I were you," with that Inuyasha leaped in the air heading back. Sesshomaru stared until his brother was out of view, then turned around and kept walking along the path. He took full notion of his brother's lonely eyes. The eyes that held change in them since that faithful day. "Foolish half breed," he thought. "Allowing the dissapearence of that girl to effect you so".
As Sesshomaru flew over the village, he thought of how pathetic his brother was for missing his human wench. It has been edleast a good half a year since she was last seen, and Sesshomaru concluded that if the girl had any real feelings for his brother she would be back. Either way, it was of no concern to him.
With the thought tossed asid Sesshomaru focused on thinking what exactly the old woman wanted of him."Protection?"although the idea quickly escaped his mind as quickly as it was brought it in, his so called brother could take care of it, "He can do that much," he thought.
"Money?" this idea didn't escape his mind as quickly as the last. The static lord looked around the huts, and concluded that like any other village the humans here probably lacked the proper values that only money could buy. Values such as fine silk, better supplies, and of course food other then the usual rice and fish.
"What brings that woman to believe that I can easily hand over money, much less waste it on something as low as a human village". Money was not very valuable in the demon world but the items they could buy were, and if Sesshomaru had access to anything it was everything money could buy.
Aside from the tessaiga, he always believed stealing to be beneath him, and asking was even worse in his mind. No, if he needed anything a certain family castle high above in the clouds could provide him with such needs. Not that he didn't need much asid from the occasional change of wardrobe.
"That's not it," he thought. "Of all the people to discuss it with why me, even she must know my answer to such an absurd question". Then what is it, he kept wondering. Although the question was soon to be answered as Sesshomaru found himself floating above Kaede's hut.
Beneath a star filled night, in a small hut an old woman sat holding with her great wisdom despit her lack of youth and strength. She took small sips of her tea as she poked at the fire to keep it warming up the small hut the villagers so kindly rebuilt for her. Considering how her old hut was demolished. She knew it must of been late for no sounds of children or adults could be heard, but she forced herself to stay awake just as she had the night before. Yet he never came.
She chuckled lightly to herself, certainly the great Prince of the West wouldn't do anything he didn't wish to do. She also knew that he probably felt her hardly worth his time. She poked at the fire some more as embers started flying up.
"But this be important," she thought, as she watched the embers dissapate into the air. She knew sending Inuyasha would be much more easier and faster then she herself going to look for Sesshomaru. If it wasn't her weak strength that would lead to her death, it would certainly be the death of old age that would come for her first before she ever found that wandering dog demon.
She should be thankeful that Inuyasha went to the trouble of doing her the favor to look for him, and deliver her message. Although, she expected Sesshomau to be outside her hut the night before, and wondered if he even intended to see to her request at all.
She had not seen Sesshomaru, or his companions since the defeat of Naraku. Which was also the day Kohaku decided to stay in the village with his sister. Ever since then she had not seen them. Though Inuyasha informed her he must be traveling into farther territories if he hadn't been able to pick up on his scent in months.
She sighed to herself, "All the more reason that this conversation need be discussed," she thought, although her thoughts were interupted by a powerful aura emitting outside her home. Her fire suddenly died out and she knew exactly who it was at her door. She looked over her shoulder and greeted her expected guest with a clear calm, "So yae have decided to come after all".
Sesshomaru moved the straw mat aside, revealing the old priestess who had sent Inuyasha to call upon him to speak with her. He did not bother to look at the surroundings of the hut, he just kept his cold eyes on the old woman. Kaede tried to keep up his stare as she turned to face him fully, but her efforts were in vain as his intimidating look sent her eyes back to the dead fire.
If it were anyone else they would cower in fear at the beast at their door. Kaede took in his features and knew better. He will not kill unless given a reason, Inuyasha had said so himself. Kaede examined him from head to toe finding that while his presence was indead intimidating, his looks and features brought out certain beauty within him.
To the untrained eye he looked like an angel sent from the heavens. His long untangled silver silk hair blowing from the breeze outside, the moon light causing it along with his whole being to glow pure white within the dark room. As she looked into his eyes, she knew whether it was his eyes or fire, she would be looking at the same ember yellow color. Both those eyes and fire itself have something else in common besides the color, the power to strike fear in someone. Yet she refused to show him any such emotions.
His overall look was indeed a sight to be hold, but she knew that the beautiful being at her door was nothing more then an allusion. He was no angel, an angel from hell perhaps, but the man at her door was no man at all. Instead, there stood a fearful demon filled with great power and destruction. The beauty she saw was but a mere mask to hid his true frighting form from those he deemed unworthy to ever see his greatness in such a way.
"You are the one who called me here," he said, finally breaking the silence and Kaede's thoughts. "Now state you purpose," ready to get to the point of this meeting. Kaede moved slightly to make herself comftorable. "Rest assure Sesshomaru, I have brought yae here on a very important note". She looked into his ember filled eyes again and spoke sternly, "I have a proposition I would like to discuss with yae."
"Proposition?" he said blankly. For a moment he almost thought the conversation would lead to money. Suddenly a certain name caught his attention.
"I believe it be in the best interest that," she paused for a moment, not sure how exactly he would react to her request, "young Rin be taken under my care." She said it softly yet firmly, all the while not taking her eyes off his frightening gaze.
Sesshomaru didn't say a word, he wasn't even sure if what he heard was correct. His eyes widened a little at her request, but for only a split second until his face returned to its original calm look. At that moment he actually wished the conversation was about money, but no it was about something more precious to him. By far more precious then some measily gold coin.
Kaede waited for an answer, but got none, so decided she may need to do some convincing. "Sesshomaru even yae must know that while things are fine with the child now, she will grow up," she pasued to let him take in what she just said. "Without the proper guidance she will be left confused and frightened on certain subjects, and of what it takes to become a dignified woman."
Sesshomaru listened, and took in evey word she said. He also wasn't a fool, and he knew what she meant by "certain subjects" or what woman go through. His mother explained it to him at a young age to keep his curiosity as bay when the scent of blood filled his nose everytime he would travel near a human village. Wasn't exactly a pleasant conversation to have between mother and son, but she wouldn't want him to create havoc amongst a village when the blood he smelled wasn't that of a battle raging. Instead it was mother nature taking it's course on woman. How fragile the mortal body, he thought to himself.
He began to thinkg about his ward growing up, and knew he would never humiliate himself to bring her to his own mother and ask for her help to explain. Even more humiliating was him explaining , he simply refused. So even though he didn't want to admit it, the priestess had a point.
"When that happens I will simply bring her to you," he finally said. He turned around, but didn't leave. Instead, his gaze went from her to the mat that hung at the door. Kaede was stunned for a few seconds, she didn't think he would say that. She was certain that after what she thought was a rather good reason for the girl to no longer be under his care that he would agree.
That was not the case, for he just gave her another challenge to convince him more that Rin needed to be under her care starting now, not in a few years. She was quit surprised that he wasn't able to give up the girl that easily, yet in another way she wasn't.
When she said nothing back he took it that the annoying discussion was over, and took a step to leave. Then a hasty "Wait," haulted him. He was holding the mat right at the door, and didn't turn around. He only replied "There is nothing more to discuss, I will bring Rin to you when your advice and assistance is needed," he said, not taking his eyes off the outside of the hut.
Kaede ignored his comment, and decided it was time to bring out her true thoughts on the situation. "Sesshomaru yae are a demon, a wander. Yae stride for more control and power over these lands," she said. "To be the most powerful of all, aye?"
Sesshomaru looked slightly over his shoulder, annoyed with such an obvious question. To him it was more of a statement."Your point is?" he asked. Kaede sighed sadly, "Yae would be willing to put the girl in that much danger?" Sesshomaru turned his body to the side quickly at her comment, and spat back rather sharply. "That is of no concern of yours!".
Kaede paid no mind, and spat right back. Her own anger making her forget who she was talking to."The longer the girl is with yae Sesshomaru the more danger she is put in!" Sesshomaru's breath almost stopped at that.
"I am only looking out for the child's health and well being. I only want what is best for her," she paused, and saw that her guest was no longer was looking at her. "I only thought yae would want the same," she said, relieved that the truth was brought out. That Rin being with a demon, a male demon at that, was just not good for the girl especially one her age.
"Tch,"was all Sesshomaru said as he turned back around again, he hated it. Hated the conversation, hated the woman even more, and most of all hated the fact that the she was making good scense.
Who did this old woman think she was telling him what is best for the the child that has chosen to follow him. "Chosen," he thought. Thats right, it was all Rin's choice to stay by his side, no one is forcing her.
Another side of him took into consideration of what the woman said about Rin's safety. His thoughts were automatically taken back to the day he brought Rin back from hell. "I couldn't save her," he thought, as the memories fo the girl's cold body in his arm started filling his mind. If it wasn't for his mother, then Rin would not of been alive today. What struck him most was that it was his lack of knowledge and foolishness that led Rin to die in the first place.
Kaede kept quiet, knowing he was just gathering his thoughts and needed silence. Although, she did see his right hand flinch which led her to wondering what exactly he was thinking. She figured to herself that she would have to break the his thoughts sooner or later and spoke.
"Rin explained to me her life before she met yae, I asked the day Kohaku decided to stay behind with his sister in the village". Sesshomaru said nothing at first, until he turned around with his face calm and angelic as always.
"So, your intentions began at that point," he finally said, Kaede was silent for a few seconds, then only nodded her head slightly. It was true, she intended to ask for Rin the day Kohaku stayed behind for she thought it would be easier for Rin to stay if Kohaku was close by.
Although, after hearing Rin explain how happy her life had become since meeting with Sesshomaru, Kaede just didn't have the heart to take the girl away from the demon she refered to as her "whole world". That day she simply watched as the innocent girl went running after her companions into the forest.
Kaede regretted never asking, and now it was different for there was no Kohaku around to make it easier for Rin to want to stay. He trained just about everyday by taking Kirara and adventuring off to who knows where. Also, it seems Sesshomaru isn't taking the idea of letting Rin go very easily either. Kaede knew it was just what was best for the girl though, so it had to be done.
"Rin needs to learn what it's like to live amongst her own kind again." she explained, Sesshomaru's gaze never leaving hers. "She needs to know that their is another life she is capable of living, a life that can make her just as happy as the life she has following you". Kaede held a serious tone in her voice, determined to make this cold prince before her see things her way. "Don't yae want her to have that choice Sesshomaru".
Sesshomaru closed his eyes, his face making it's first movement in a while. "Rin has always had the choice of whether or not she wants to accompany me," he said ending with the opening of his eyes.
Kaede couldn't believe that Sesshomaru was being this stubborn, she knew the demon lord held some affection torwards the girl considering he let her travel with him. She never expected for Sesshomaru to keep bringing her such come backs though.
"It is of no choice to the girl if she thinks the only way to be happy is by being with yae". Kaede sounded harsher then she intended, although the icy prince's stubborness was starting to get the better of her. "Her traveling with yae has led her to knowing there is a good world being amongst demons, a world lots of people never get to know," he blinked at her statement, but continued listening.
"While it is good, at the same time it is not best for her to think that only that world can make her happy, she needs to rejoin her kind once again to see the good it can do for her as well," Kaede straightened her back and brought out a fiery gaze. Hoping to end the discussion now, "To know the good side again so she can have a fair choice to make in the future".
Kaede took a few breaths from her long explanation, hoping that it would finally end the small argument and Sesshomaru would agree with her.
Sesshomaru's eyes went from her face to the floor. He couldn't believe what he was thinking, he almsot felt like leaving at that moment just to keep his thought from thinking the dreadful facat that she might just be right. He would never admit it to her, he already hated admiting it to himself. Yet what she said even he knew was true.
Rin is not given a choice if she sees him as the only option to be happy, she deserved other options and opportunities in her life. He couldn't remember the last time he felt something so disgusting as the feeling of defeat. "My apoligies for having to put this on yae," Kaede said, breaking his thoughts.
Sesshomaru eyes went wide at her replie, though his bangs still shielded them from view. This old woman before him was about to take away the one thing he considered precious to him. The one person in the world that was able to make him think twice over his hunger for power.
"Sorry," he thought angrily, as he felt his control slip a bit. "You already won the battle," he thought. "As if having the discussion end your way wasn't enough, you dare give me your low life sympathy,"Sesshomaru's body and mind burned with rage. Kaede spoke out "In time yae will..."
"SILENCE," Sesshomaru barked back interupting and surprising the old woman. His eyes held a small shade of red as he looked at Kaede the way a predator would look at his prey, and for a few moments Kaede felt that her time of death would be sooner then she thought. It never came though, and Kaede took a breath of relief.
Sesshomaru's face calmed down, but not his voice. She could hear slight growls coming from him as he turned around once again, his back torwards her. Kaede was silent, and she looked at the second fire she started that night. Yet this one did not burn from oil. No, this burned from the rage within the body of the demon before her, and she figured it was best not to upset the fire more then she already had.
Sesshomaru held the mat off to the side again, and looked into the village hoping to calm down his anger. Seeing all the huts, and the fields, he took in every scent he could smell. The other villagers sleeping, and the demon slayer and the monk off torwards another direction. He could even pick up on a scent of two unborn infants the slayer held.
He smelled the territory around the village and found it unharmed. He also picked up on his brothers scent near by as well and knew the half breed heard every word of the conversation that just happened.
"She would be safe here," Sesshomaru thought, as he replayed the entire conversation in his mind. He managed to calm down, though found it to be slightly difficult. The only thought he kept thinking is how he wished his curiosity never got the better of him, that he never of even of came to see the priestess. He had though, and now he was finding it hard to control his anger again. After everything he did to keep the girl safe she was about to leave his life, and not knowing when he would even be able to see her again.
At that note, another came to mind. "My presence," now he was the one who paused. "Will not be welcomed around her while she is here," he asked although, somehow he already knew the answer.
"The less she sees of yae, the easier it will be for her to accept her new life" Kaede said softly, as she looked down. Though Sesshomaru didn't know it, she head the sadness in his question. Surprisingly, even though she got things her way, she couldn't help but feel sorry for him. She had a feeling that Sesshomaru was about to feel the same way Inuyasha has been feeling for months.
Sesshomaru looked from the sky to the ground. Not even letting the night sky see the change in his face, the hurt in his chest. It truely will be a very long time before him and the girl would see one another again once she stays.
The thought of no longer seeing the smile that beamed at him all day, the dirt covered feet running to catch up to him. The scent of river water and fresh flowers she always held would be gone. He actually began to get used to that scent around him. He would not be hearing her voice no longer. Sesshomaru felt a small pain at that, the area where his so called black heart was ached at the thought of no longer hearing her constant chatter.
In the beginning, he wanted nothing more then to find some sticky sap to keep her mouth shut. Yet, as time went by he got used to her constant talking of ridiculous unimportent events. The laughter she would have over Jaken's actions of stupidity. The little tunes she would sing while she kept the silence from enveloping her comapany of three, most of those tunes usually carrying his or Jaken's name. Her singing was half bad either, he thought. It didn't matter anymore though, becauase all that was about to end. That walking chatterbox of sunshine was about to leave him to be amongst her own kind again.
His descision was made.
His thoughts were haulted as he heard the priestess cough purposly behind him. He didn't know how long he was in thought, but knew it was time to take his leave. He walked outside the hut, yet not even five steps from the hut he heard the old woman speak out. "Sesshomaru wait what...". "Prepare for Rin's arrival tommorow night," he said quickly, knowing his anger showed a bit in his voice.
He was hoping that by just leaving then it would seem like the conversation had never happend. Once he heard her voice his blood started to boil some, and at that moment he wished he had cut off her legs in her hut so she wouldn't of followed. As he took flight, he was almost certain he heard an apology come from her again. He ignored it that time for there was another important matter to attend to, and that was fetching Rin.