A knock at the door broke the warm feelings lingering in the living room. Kagome gasped, spinning to look at the door while Sesshomaru stiffened and stood, going over to stand before the door. He gripped his sword and gave a nod to Kagome who was waiting in her usual position. She didn't like how this was becoming a routine for them. Still, when her hand rested on the doorknob she noticed that her trembling had lessened greatly. She wasn't sure who was on the other side, but somehow she felt safer knowing that Sesshomaru was there with her to deal with it.
Returning his nod, she gripped the brass knob and turned it quickly, pulling the door open as Sesshomaru lunged for whoever was on the other side. In that moment, she heard a scream and someone fall back.
"Holy crap!"
That was a familiar voice. One she hadn't expected to see here. Her eyes widened and she felt her whole body go numb while she stared at the back of the door. It was just exhaustion playing tricks on her mind. He couldn't be here.
"InuYasha, what are you doing here?" Sesshomaru questioned and Kagome felt her heart leap in her chest. How did they know one another?
The shorter white haired young man stormed into the room, pushing past Sesshomaru as he grumbled. "Well you said you were going to come back after you found out what the problem was but it's been hours and you never returned."
Sesshomaru closed the door, noting how Kagome's grip on it was tight. She gave in to him easily, leaning against the wall by the door and staring at InuYasha with what seemed to be a mixture of shock and pain. That expression didn't settle well with him, and he reached out for her, startling her as his fingertips brushed against her cheek lightly. "Kagome, what is wrong?"
InuYasha stilled in mid-motion, turning to stare at them. His expression became irritated. "Aw crap…"
Kagome took a deep breath and rushed past both of them, going for the watch on the lamp and staring at it in confusion. It was true. Several hours had passed in what seemed to be the blink of an eye. It was a quarter to two in the morning! A sinking sensation filled her once again as she marked the event on the paper. So far, there was no logical flow to time. What did this mean? How was this even possible?
Her thoughts were interrupted as Sesshomaru's voice broke into the uncomfortable silence that had filled the room. "You know each other?"
She swallowed and shook her head, fighting back tears that were stinging in her eyes. "No. I don't know him." Her voice was coarse and clearly emotional as she ran from the room and slammed the door to the bathroom, locking it behind her.
Sesshomaru watched her go, knowing she had just lied. It was obvious – anyone would know! The question was… why? He turned to InuYasha who had a scowl on his face as he flopped down on the chair that Kagome had vacated minutes earlier. "What happened between you?"
InuYasha shrugged. "You know all about it already."
Surprise etched on the elder man's face and he thought carefully before responding with a mixture of disgust and awe. "She is the one?"
The younger male nodded, sighing deeply. "I didn't know she moved into your apartment complex."
Sesshomaru seemed… shell-shocked. There was no other way to define the absolute wonder and worry he felt at that moment as he sat on the couch and tried to remember what his half-brother had told him of his recent relationship issues. They were never very close but InuYasha insisted that Sesshomaru was the only one he knew who could hear out his problems.
A few months ago, InuYasha came to his apartment – as pitiful as ever – begging for advice on what he should do. Apparently, he had been dating a young woman he met in high school. They were on-again-off-again for years, and while Sesshomaru never met her he was sure she was a vapid idiot for allowing the moron to string her along. She was a few years younger than InuYasha, nearly a decade younger than Sesshomaru from what he gathered, and so when InuYasha went to college she was left behind at home to finish her studies. They had one of those so-called "long distance relationships" through phone calls and letters.
During this time, InuYasha met Kikyo. He tried to play the good boyfriend for a long time and they were "just friends" for months before he broke down and confessed. Surprisingly, the intelligent – she was studying to be a doctor – Kikyo immediately took the bait and gave herself fully to InuYasha, doting on him all the time. They had a happy relationship. Until… the day InuYasha's high school sweetheart graduated.
InuYasha forgot to show up – he forgot to even mention to the poor thing that he was seeing someone else, in fact. So when she arrived at his apartment with a huge grin on her face, he took her in – unsure how to tell her the truth. For a while, he dated both women, somehow magically keeping them apart. Then, one day, everything fell to pieces.
He left for work and class, giving his girlfriend a kiss and leaving her to tidy his messes and do his household chores, never knowing of the fate that awaited him.
While Sesshomaru pondered his limited knowledge of the events, Kagome was leaned against the bathroom door, trying not to cry. InuYasha didn't deserve her tears.
It was true; she had met him in Geography class – she was an advanced student while he was average. He asked her, of all people, to help him study for an upcoming test. It was during their "study sessions" that his real intentions came out. Eventually, they were dating.
She had been so happy when they were together. InuYasha seemed to genuinely love her, and they planned to marry when the time was right. He, being older than her, graduated and went to college before her. Of course, that was not a problem. They were so in love that nothing could tear them apart.
Or, that was what she thought.
InuYasha never neglected her. It should have been a warning to her that he did not come to her graduation. Still, she figured he was just so busy working and going to school that he couldn't make it. No big deal. She would go to him.
He hadn't shown any sign that he was now in love with another woman. Nothing hinted at the possibility. Nothing, until one day while she was washing dishes, she showed up.
Both women knew instantly.
For her part, Kikyo had the dignity to seem surprised and a little sick. Kagome was polite and generous to the woman, inviting her in for tea. They had a long talk, and the truth came to light for both of them. That was how InuYasha found them when he came into his home, sitting at his kitchen table, staring at him silently.
Kikyo had a deadly look on her face. She was clearly unhappy, and he was likely to live the rest of his life a lesser man. Kagome, surprisingly, looked mollified. She didn't seem to care, and her things were packed in the same suitcases she had arrived with.
"I'm taking her home. InuYasha… you're lucky if I don't tell your mother about this!" Kikyo said with disgust in her voice as she stood, taking up her purse. She gestured for Kagome to follow her, which she did obediently, only to pause and stare down her nose at him. "Oh, by the way, I got that internship. I'm moving to England for a time. I was planning on asking you to come, but I think we could use some time apart."
With that, both women left his life. He never apologized. He didn't even try! Kagome sniffed and pulled her arms around her knees tighter. What was he doing here again? How did Sesshomaru know him? Her mind raced over the possibilities.
It was unlikely they were friends. From what she knew of Sesshomaru so far, they were not similar enough to be friendly for long. In fact, judging by the raised voices coming through the door, they weren't on friendly terms right now.
Suddenly, something came to her and the realization fell on her like a ton of bricks. They were related! Her eyes widened. Of course! She reached up, lightly hitting her head with closed fists. Why did she not see it earlier? The golden eyes, the white hair, the odd ethereal appearance – they were family!
Kagome sighed, and her head fell back as she considered the best way to handle this. This was not the time to be having discussions on their personal lives in great detail. Occasional conversation, sure, but going into what had happened between her and InuYasha was going to do nothing but drive them apart. They had to work together.
Even now, she could hear it as InuYasha called out his job class and roll – a twenty, of course – lucky bastard. She wondered what job class he had chosen but decided she didn't care at the moment. She didn't even want to look at him. She would have to. They had to make it through this.
With a groan, Kagome stood and checked herself out in the mirror, nodding firmly at how her eyes were puffy but otherwise she looked the same. No tears had fallen. That was good. Holding her head high, she went out into the living room, noting that Miroku had joined them and was being introduced to InuYasha. Their new rouge. Lovely. A rogue with unlimited daggers. Well, at least he was good for something.
Sesshomaru watched the silent interaction between his neighbor and his brother and frowned. He had to do something to stop this. They could argue or whatever later, although he didn't like the idea of that. Either way, they needed to get going. "We need to roll to see which of us will be allowed to participate."
Miroku nodded, and Kagome pouted. InuYasha scratched his head. "Er… I don't mean to sound dumb but, how do we know who stays and who goes?"
"We don't. That was never explained. He will likely tell us when we have failed," Miroku said, giving a strained look but taking up the dice and giving it a toss. He rolled an eleven. Sesshomaru rolled a seven. InuYasha rolled a three.
Sesshomaru had a sinking feeling in his stomach. Was he going to have to leave Kagome with InuYasha? He didn't like that idea. He wasn't entirely sure why he hated it – other than he really despised his brother for his treatment of women in general – but he couldn't deny the anger that rose in his chest at the thought of them alone.
That voice, the sickening amused voice that was clearly male, once again rose from nowhere and everywhere at once. InuYasha jumped slightly, the others were more resigned. "The rogue and the warrior will advance to the next trial. All others will remain in wait. Remember, if one of you is killed during a trial those in wait can come out of reserve to assist the party, except, of course, the doctor – who has to wait for one more trial after this one before she can join you. Good luck!"
Kagome blanched. InuYasha scowled. Sesshomaru frowned but went to the door, raising his hand to knock. He stopped when a small hand reached for his. He didn't turn, knowing by the warmth that filled him that it had to be Kagome. "Come back safe."
He gave no response. He knew she'd not expect one, either. He and InuYasha entered the empty abyss, standing in perfect darkness as the door closed and locked behind them. As usual, a hazy light hung above them, revealing nothing of what lie ahead.
"You and Kagome, eh?" InuYasha said with a hint of disgust laced with amusement. He was finding it rather funny that his stodgy brother was going after his scraps.
Sesshomaru frowned slightly. "Hn." He didn't know why he said that. It was practically admittance that there was something between them. There wasn't, right?
He had little time to think on it. In the distance, somewhere in the depths, music began to play, slow, grinding music, as if someone were winding something to get it to play. It was a haunting tune that seeped through their bones. It began to come closer and both brothers stepped towards one another, their shoulders pressing lightly, scowls on their faces as they readied for danger.
Footsteps accompanied the music and eventually a man in an odd suit with a squat, rounded hat and a curled mustache came into view, a large box strapped to his torso. He was turning a lever on the side of the box and it took little time to realize that the music was coming from this instrument. The man smiled and continued to crank out the odd tune, seemingly immune to the fact that it was off key. "Good day, gents, always a pleasure to have guests. If ya enjoy the music, feel free to drop a coin or two in me bucket there."
He gestured with his head down towards the bottom of the box where a silver metal bucket hung, a few shiny coins of various types already inside. Sesshomaru raised an eyebrow and looked at InuYasha questioningly. Neither of them had any spare change. For one, most of the world had switched to digital currency – debit and credit cards were more likely than actual cash. Also, both had been preparing to sleep and it was highly unusual for someone to sleep with money in their pockets.
"We ain't got no money." InuYasha said, his face scrunching at the grinding sound of the gears as the man continued to turn the handle.
The strange man was not pleased. Perhaps it was the fact that they had no money. Perhaps it was because InuYasha was slightly rude. It was hard to tell. Either way, his face contorted into a scowl, and he passed them, a look of distain in his eyes as he ground the music harder, upping the tempo.
Suddenly, a loud switch was flipped and the area was filled with light so fast that the brothers had to squint tightly or risk going blind. When Sesshomaru opened one eye, very cautiously, what he saw both shocked and terrified him. He swallowed a hard lump and stared into the twisting tunnel before him. "InuYasha… it's…"
InuYasha nodded, frowning but stepping forward with determination. "It's fake. Remember that. This isn't the same place."
It wasn't that his brother had first-hand recollection. He'd only seen the place in pictures, heard of the event in family stories from their father. Still, he knew that this was not the kind of place Sesshomaru needed to be. Not the sort of experience he should relive.
Laughter came from somewhere inside and InuYasha stilled as Sesshomaru gripped his wrist tightly, as if begging him not to go in. He sighed and turned to stare at his brother, his frown deepening at how mortified the usually collected Sesshomaru was. "It's okay. It's not real."
Sesshomaru nodded, taking a deep breath before they took the few shaky steps up to walk through the black and white tunnel that spun around them and tried to trip them as it tumbled. When they reached the other side, they had two paths to take. InuYasha went to go left, but a strained choke came from his brother and he paused, turning to go right instead. Obviously, left was how he had gone as a child.
The laughter continued to mingle with the odd music in the air, and InuYasha swore he could even smell the faint hint of popcorn. They walked through the dark chambers, passing through rooms full of fog, rooms full of dancing lights, and found themselves in a circular chamber lined with mirrors. This time, even InuYasha tensed. The mirror room, this was bad.
He watched as Sesshomaru, slowly – as if each step he took was thick and heavy – went through the hall of mirrors only to stop abruptly. InuYasha ran into him but his brother said nothing, very unusual for him, and he peeked around only to gasp. There, in the center of the room, surrounded by mirrors, lay a woman.
She was dead.
Her body laid there, blood pooling out of her slit neck and solidifying in an odd pattern on the floor. Her pretty orange dress was dirty, one of the spaghetti straps was torn off and her top dangled down. InuYasha was sure the young girl would have been mortified at the indignity of her position but, instead, she lay there and stare out with lifeless eyes at her own reflection.
The dead body was not the worst thing in the room.
Even worse than that, standing on the opposite side of the room and staring down at the young woman, was Sesshomaru. Not Sesshomaru as InuYasha knew him, of course, but Sesshomaru as a child. The boy stared down at the girl for a few moments before letting out a scream and running back the way he came. His cries echoed through the halls and Sesshomaru broke into a run, chasing after his former self.
Something grabbed his ankle and he tripped, falling forward into a mirror, shattering it to pieces and scratching himself as he stumbled to the ground. Sesshomaru turned to look and saw the dead woman's hand gripping onto his leg. InuYasha was staring at the scene in horror, not sure how to act.
"Let go of me!" Sesshomaru hissed, a sense of urgency building in him as he heard his own childish screams fill the fun house.
The young woman rose up slightly, her black hair sticking to her pale skin as she stared at Sesshomaru with her hollow and penetrating eyes. "Never."
She began to crawl over to him, he backing away into the glass to get away from her. InuYasha growled out and rushed over to grab the dead girl. Just as he reached her, she spun around and stared at him with her empty eyes, a slow smirk forming on her face. He recoiled out of instinct. Her right hand came up, slowly pointing behind him and InuYasha felt his stomach flip as he turned, unable to stop himself.
By the time he was turned around he was alone, no longer in the fun house of his brother's childhood memories but in his own memories. He knew this place. He didn't like it.
He watched as his childhood-self stood in the doorway of his mother's room. She was leaned over the bed, crying intensely into her pillow. On the floor, beside the bed was the phone. He could still hear the consistent tone of the empty line on the other end.
InuYasha hated his father.
Not for leaving him behind. He could take it. But for how sad and empty his mother was at his father's lack of presence. It was horrible. His mother loved his father with such devotion that it made him sick. He didn't deserve her.
He watched as his childhood-self went over to her, climbing onto the bed and patting her back gently. "It's okay mom. I'm here. I'll always be here for you."
InuYasha nodded. He would always be there for his mother, until her dying day. He had done right by her. He felt relieved and was going to turn away, only for his heart to drop as his mother sat up and smiled down on his childish self. It was wrong. It was all wrong.
It was not his mother.
The eyes, the nose, the mouth, and the way she smiled. None of them were his mother. It was her body, but… it was Kagome's face. He felt a shiver run up his spine when she looked up at him. "Will you always be here for me, InuYasha?"
Within the blink of an eye she was on him, knocking him over, her hands coming up to grip his face. "Always?"
He shook his head. No. This wasn't real. "Get off me!"
She pouted. "I should have known you'd let me down."
InuYasha scowled, looking away from her in annoyance. "Kagome… you ain't my mom."
"No. I'm not."
When he looked down on her again she was as he always knew her. In that silly schoolgirl uniform, hair gently swept back. He frowned. "Kagome, look, I'm sorry."
"Are you?"
He nodded. "I didn't mean… well, I didn't know… I mean… I just was stupid, okay?!" His voice rose with each word, laced with confusion and pain. His eyes closed tightly as he tried to not think too much on what he'd done.
"Are you going to let me go?"
He gasped and looked up, staring at his mother once more. His arms came up to wrap around her in a tight hug as he shook his head. "Never!"
She patted him gently, rocking him and humming as she had when he was a child. His eyes slid closed at the comfort that he had missed for so long. Suddenly, she was not there. It was colder.
Before he could open his eyes, he heard the squeal of tires and the crash. His eyes shot open and he swallowed hard, staring at the familiar street as he ran down the sidewalk towards the crosswalk.
He knew what he would find but he couldn't help himself but to relive the moment.
There, on the asphalt, amid groceries and the spilled contents of her purse, was his dead mother.
InuYasha knelt down, sliding a hand down her face to close her eyes, and sighed. He had been only a few yards away. He could have saved her, he always told himself, but he knew that was a lie.
Reaching down, he took up a few coins off the ground and stood, scowling up at the cloudy sky. "I'm ready to get outta here!"
The area went black and the next thing he knew he was standing beside Sesshomaru, the organ grinder playing his tune with a knowing grin. InuYasha sighed and went over, tossing the coins into the bucket. As they clinked against the metal, the door to the manager's apartment opened, and they stepped back into relative safety.
Kagome was waiting on the other side with such a concerned expression that InuYasha felt a slight pang of regret. What pulled him from his pity-party was the fact that she was not waiting for him. She rushed past him to his brother, eyes wide with fear. "What happened to you?!"
Sesshomaru tried to act as if nothing had happened; this was his typical response whenever someone showed concern for him anymore and while he had become closer to his neighbor through this ordeal they were not exactly intimate, barely even friends yet. However, he could not deny the proof that something did indeed happen as blood continued to dribble down from the gash in his forehead where he had smashed into the mirror. Instead of giving a response, he chose to brush past the worried young woman and marched to the bathroom.
When the crisp white door closed behind him, Sesshomaru closed his eyes and took a slow breath, counting mentally to ten as he tried to will the images from his past away again. He had spent a long time in therapy after that incident. At the tender age of six years, he was not at all prepared to see a dead girl lying in the fun house. He had struggled with the idea of a woman being reliant on him since then, had been celibate for years until he met Kagura.
In his mind, he had let down so many women by this point. He'd let down his mother by not being stronger and realizing that he should have said something when his father began to go astray. He'd let down Rin, his own daughter. He'd let down Kagura, for not being there when she needed him most, not saving her from Naraku's insane grip. Worst of all, he had let down that young woman in the fun house. If he had only been there a few moments earlier... would it have been him who had died in her place? Would that have saved her?
A gentle knock at the door startled him, and he jumped, turning to look towards it. The handle giggled and he frowned, stepping back as the door slowly opened, a head quietly peeking through, the curtain of dark hair hanging around it causing his pulse to race. Was he back in one of those twisted moments? Agonizingly slow, the head lifted and he found himself holding his breath, waiting to see the face of the dead girl once more. Instead, Kagome looked up at him with a worried gaze. "Sesshomaru?"
He shook his head, inhaling quickly as he sat against the rim of the tub, staring as if he was seeing through her. She went over to him, lifting his bangs and examining the wound on his forehead. When her fingers brushed against his skin he moved quickly as if by instinct, grasping her wrist firmly and pulling her away as their eyes locked. "Don't touch me."
Kagome frowned. "You're hurt."
"It doesn't concern you," he ground out, shoving her away.
The young woman let out a huff as she fell back, unable to stop as she stumbled through the doorway, the force of her fall and her fumbling attempts to save herself causing her to slam the door shut as she crashed into the wall of the hallway. InuYasha and Miroku frowned, both standing and staring at her, wondering what had happened. Kagome ignore them, her pulse racing as she stood and moved to open the door. It wouldn't open. Her eyes widened and she struggled again, slamming her fist against the door. "Sesshomaru! Open up, this isn't funny!"
He didn't respond.
Kagome gasped, turning to look towards InuYasha and Miroku. They were gone. Her body began to tremble as she rushed through the apartment, darting into Rin's room to find that the child was also absent. What was going on?! It was then, from inside the little girl's room, the twinkling lights bouncing off the walls happily, the soothing rain pounding on the window, that Kagome saw the door to the apartment was wide open. Licking her dry lips, she swallowed hard, taking slow steps forward as she went towards the door.
Something was out there. She could tell. What was it? Her bare feet touched the cool floor of the foyer, turning as the lighting flashed and filled the dark space with illumination, giving her just enough time to note that a humanoid form was standing right beside her. Screaming, she ran back into the apartment, stumbling and falling onto her chest, only to lift as the person behind her spoke.
"Child, whatever are you doing here? Is something wrong?" Kagome gasped, eyes wide as she turned to look and see none other than Kaede. The kind old woman seemed no worse for the wear and smiled as she closed the door casually behind her. Kagome felt a chill run up her spine as she sat up, reaching up to brush her hair out of her face.
"Where is Rin?" She asked shakily, accepting the tea from the elder woman as she watched her sit in one of the chairs.
"With her father. She does not like thunderstorms, they frighten her. She feels safer when she sleeps with someone during a storm."
Kagome blinked and stood, setting the tea on the table before nodding. "I'm sorry, I seem to have had a bad dream and was sleep walking."
"Would you like to talk about it, my dear?"
The younger woman shook her head. No. It was fine. If all of it was a dream then it was all fine. Turning to go, she opened the door, suddenly feeling afraid, but when she stepped into the hall, nothing was out of place. The lights flickered on, and the entry door was no longer sealed off. Letting out a sigh, Kagome went upstairs, returning to her bed. Crawling into the covers, she pulled her legs up and laid her head on her knees, trying to grasp how everything could have possibly been in her head. It had all seemed too real. Even if it wasn't, she was far too terrified to sleep now.
With a sigh, she reached for her remote and turned on the television, only to scream in horror at what appeared. There on the screen, she saw herself, sitting on her bed, watching the television. Well... staring at it... while it played nothing but static. She wanted to look away. She knew she should turn it off. She was just hallucinating, right? Then, the image of her on the bed, slowly turned to look at her, a slow creepy grin forming on her face. Kagome's eyes widened as her other self raised her hands, palms out, and then rushed for the screen, splattering the blood that covered them onto the screen.
The television cut out, static bursting onto the screen, and Kagome shuddered, slowly bringing her hands up, dropping the remote on the bed as she stared at her hands in terror. Blood. Letting out a scream, she reached for the phone, ready to dial for help, when the power cut out once more as the thundering crack of another bolt of electricity jolted through the apartment complex.
"What..." Kagome shook her head, throwing the blanket and sheets off as she ran through her apartment and up the stairs, banging on Sesshomaru's door frantically. No answer. Her stomach flipped, and she reached down, trying the handle and giving off a small whimper as she opened the door. Light flashed through the apartment as the storm raged on, and Kagome walked through Sesshomaru's apartment, freezing in the doorway to the bedroom as she saw him kneeling beside the bed, Rin sleeping within.
Licking her lips, she stepped forward. "Sesshomaru?" He didn't respond. Perhaps he had fallen asleep? It had been a tiresome night. Reaching out, she went to wake him, pushing against his shoulder lightly. When his body slumped over, falling onto the ground with a thud, she finally saw the blood staining the sheets. Trembling, she backed into the wall, unable to even scream anymore. What the hell was going on?!
Turning to Rin, she ripped the sheets off the bed, tears welling in her eyes as she noticed how the child laid there, a gaping wound in her chest and blood still leaking out of the opening. Fresh wounds. Kagome's instincts told her to run; whoever did this was not far. Rushing out of the apartment, she let out a cry as something tripped her and she turned to see InuYasha, laying partially out in the hallway of Sesshomaru's apartment, eyes open but clearly dead. With a wail, she lifted herself, pulling away from him before pushing off the ground and running out of the apartment and down the stairs.
She didn't even try to knock on Miroku's door, if it was unlocked, she would already know something had happened. When the door swung open, she let out a cry, turning to go down the steps, only to pause at the end of the stair well and turn, staring at the open door before her. "Keyhole Man"'s apartment was open. Was he behind all of this?
Letting out a cry, she ran towards Kaede's apartment, banging on the door and waiting. No answer. Trembling, she reached down and grasped the cool metal of the knob, letting out a sob as the door opened easily, revealing the elderly woman still in the chair. Had she fallen asleep? Kagome hoped as she slowly walked towards the woman, reaching up to feel for a pulse. No. Nononono... this wasn't happening. Kaede was dead. From the looks of it, poisoned.
Kagome jumped as the sound of many people and sirens came from outside, flashlights bobbing through the entry glass as the door opened and she heard voices. Police burst through the doorway, pointing guns at her as they screamed orders, but all Kagome could do was shake and laugh. It wasn't her! It wasn't! Crumpling to the ground, she lifelessly let them handcuff her and drag her away.
As they pulled her through the entrance, she could hear an elderly man frantically telling them that she wasn't even a resident. The apartment she had been occupying belonged to someone else, a Sango somethingorother, who had been on vacation. Apparently, she had been planning to marry Miroku. Kagome laughed at that. Well, that wasn't happening now, was it? As the medics injected her with something, Kagome slowly dozed off, unable to stay awake any longer.
When she came to, she was in darkness. Well, mostly darkness. A small rectangular window provided some light. Struggling to stand, she noticed her arms were held fast behind her back, and she let out a whimper, trying to stand up. Suddenly, she heard that familiar voice calling to her, laughing.
"It would seem the doctor got a little carried away! Quite all right, we can continue our little game with one! Why don't you roll the dice, my dear?" There, before her on the pale floor, a pair of dice bounced into her view and she moved to take them up, but found she couldn't. The voice chuckled and responded with a sigh. "Oh my, it appears you're in a bit of a bind."
Kagome let out a whimper, head lolling to the side as it brushed against the padded walls. Tears welled in her eyes as she considered the best way to continue this. Throwing her body forward, she moved to take up the dice in her mouth, but was met with nothing more than cotton. A sob tore through her as she rolled over, curling into a fetal position. What had she ever done to deserve all this?
The sound of keys clattering and the door opening caused Kagome to look up, wincing at the light. "Only a few minutes, miss, we just caught her today. Can't be too careful now."
The woman nodded to the guard before entering the padded cell and kneeling beside Kagome. Her mother. Kagome smiled. "Mama! I have a new apartment! You should come see it sometime!"
The elder woman sighed and shook her head. "Kagome... why did you have to do this again? Was that poor girl – Kikyo - not enough for you? You had to go after InuYasha, too? Worse, now you've gone and murdered four more unrelated individuals... you know they won't let you get away with this, honey." Tears welled in her mother's eyes. "They're calling for the death penalty, sweetheart."
Kagome's brow furrowed. "They aren't unrelated. We knew each other! They were all in on it! Well... except, perhaps Rin, but she would have blabbed, and the old woman was in the way. I should have got rid of that hermit first. That was my mistake."
"Honey, you only met those people a few weeks ago!"
Kagome shook her head. "I knew them. We all played role playing games together... at InuYasha's place."
Her mother gasped and stood, leaving the room to inform the police about the latest information she had received from her daughter. If they were all related, others could have been affected. As the guard closed the door, plunging Kagome into darkness, her expression lightened and she grinned.
A few hours later, the guard opened the door and two orderlies dressed in white came into the room and lifted her up. She didn't fight them, knowing there was no point to it, and they dragged her out into the hallway and put her into a wheelchair. One of them, she noted that both looked the same, strapped her into the wheelchair, effectively removing any chance of her escape. Tweedledee – she affectionately named the other one – pushed the chair through the halls and it made an odd squeaking sound that caused her to giggle.
Finally, they arrived and placed her within a tacky beige office, with a fake plant and pictures of happy smiling people, who all looked very bored to her, plastered across the walls. The doctor stepped into the room with a sigh and sat in the large burgundy colored chair, tossing her thick file onto the desk. "I hear we had a little adventure!" Kagome broke into laughter again. The doctor frowned. "So, you murdered a total of six individuals by now. Your mother seems to believe that these were interconnected, as if you knew the individuals in question."
Kagome nodded. "We played role playing games together in InuYasha's basement."
The doctor frowned and flipped through the files, before pulling up a picture of a building and tapping it before turning it to show Kagome an apartment complex. "You mean at his residence in this picture?"
She squinted and nodded. "That is InuYasha's place, all right!"
"Kagome, the young man you are speaking of lived on the ninth floor of this apartment complex with his fiancée, the girl you murdered the first time you escaped. You had only met them three days prior to the incident."
She shook her head, dark hair flailing about. "No, no, we played role playing games together."
The doctor sighed and leaned back, tapping his pen on his desk lightly. "Kagome, you did not know any of these people prior to all of this. Everything you have experienced for the past few days have mostly been hallucinations. You have had them since you were small. Your hallucinations frequently are so intense you cannot tell the difference between them and reality. It is why you are in our care."
Kagome's brow furrowed and she bit her lip. No, that couldn't be right. She felt perfectly lucid. "I'm not hallucinating now, am I?" She quipped. Looking up only to see that the room was entirely dark and instead of the doctor, another individual sat across from her. The lamp on the desk flickered, and she watched as milky white skin came into view, hands folded together. The person leaned forward, dark hair swaying out and draping around their face which only kept the faded hue of the lamp from fully revealing their features.
They laughed and Kagome immediately realized it was a woman. "I don't know, are you?"
Kagome blinked. That voice sounded familiar. "Who are you?"
"You know."
Slowly, the woman's hand came up, and she pulled her hair away, revealing her face. Kagome stared back at herself, feeling a shiver run up her spine. Both women grinned.
"They had it coming to them." She said from the wheelchair.
Doctor Kagome nodded. "That's what they get for pissing off the Game Master."
~*FIN*~