The Scent of Despair
Written by Catrina Winner
Disclaimer: I do not own Inuyasha. This will only be stated once. I make no claim to anything in this work.
Author's Notes: This is something a bit different from my usual style. I got this idea right before I had to go to bed, and started writing in (NOT a good idea) but I think that I'll enjoy it quite a lot. It's a very dark fic, but I THINK it will have a happy ending… Lemme know if you think it should be… Anyway, to the story!!
His feet squelched heavily on the wet green moss beneath him. Rain fell down softly, sliding along his tired features. The forest - his forest - drooped in the weighted air. It was heavy and damp, possessing the smell of freshness. A mist draped itself among the towering trees, clinging to all it came in contact with. The final darkness was being chased away with the first trailers of light. Still the night went slowly, and the moisture held. The scent of the rich earth was intoxicating and filled his senses, blocking everything else. His golden eyes flickered over his surroundings, searching for something. A quiet rustling came from his left side. He crouched down, hiding within the concealing darkness and brown bushes, preparing for the worst.
From the woods she stepped into the softly lit clearing. Water dripped from her hair, falling to the grass and dirt below. Mud caked her shoes and stained her drenched clothes in strange patterns. Her shirt was ragged, thoroughly muddy, and her skirt had an enormous tear across it from their earlier treks of the forest.
But it was her face that held his interest. Her heavy bangs covered ashy purple eyes, and blocked them from his view. He could see the salty tears sliding down her pale cheek, mingling with the remnants from the long rain, finally past. Her lips were turned down in an unhappy manner and her nose twitched with her muffled sobs.
For a single moment she looked up, seemingly to search for one she could almost sense. Though it was but a moment, to the one hidden in the bushes, it appeared an eternity.
The mist swirled around her face at the sudden movement, causing a transparent cloud to glide about her figure. Her longing eyes grazed over his hiding place, unseeing. They were fogged with tears unshed. As he watched, she tried to wipe them away, only to have them replaced again and again.
Her face seemed so haunted. Even so close, she appeared distant. Never before had he witnessed her like that. He prayed he would never have to again. Slowly, so slowly, she turned and walked back the way she had come, back towards their camp. It was then he caught her scent, previously missed, hidden under the musky smell of the woods.
It chilled him to the bone.
It was her scent, there was no mistaking that, but it was so strange and different. Twisted with her usual warm and pleasant smell was a darker, heavier one. His face shifted thoughtfully for a moment. This was not something he had ever before smelled. Or, at least, not something he smelled that often. Many moments passed of his quiet puzzling and, finally, the answer struck him.
It was the scent of despair.
And blood – he had smelled the spicy aroma of blood on her too. But it was old blood… perhaps that of a previously killed demon, though it seemed an awful lot like… hers.
He shuddered, and made his way though the ever-lightening forest. He saw her again, hugging herself in the dawn, shivering. He almost went to her, but another came and walked her back to their makeshift camp. As they receded from his view he could not help himself as a single word fell from his lips.
"Kagome…" Inuyasha whispered, his golden eyes glittering in pain.