Summary: Sesshoumaru considers events/changes that have resulted in him hosting a Christmas Celebration in the Western Stronghold.

AN: This takes place a year after the end of the last chapter.


~ooO The Second Christmas Tree Ooo~

Sesshoumaru watched the two children run around directing the servants to hang dozens of specially crafted ornaments on a tree that was twice as tall as him. He had not wanted to cut down a tree for a week's celebration and Kagome had agreed. Together, they had cast wards and barriers that created a small warm pocket around an evergreen planted in the back courtyard of his stronghold. Enchanted torches cast strong light illuminating the entire yard despite it being well past dusk. There were several tables and benches set around the tree within the protected dome; tables set with snacks and odd foods Kagome had personally taught the cook to make. Sesshoumaru knew if it wasn't for her condition she would be up on the step stools and ladders decorating the tree herself.

Since she was five months pregnant – almost full-term for a hybrid pregnancy – she had contented herself with manufacturing the colourful paper chains and hand crafting the tree ornaments. The tajija who was very pregnant herself was assisting. Her battle-companion was napping in front of the warm fire. The houshi was diligently following decorating instructions from the children.

The only ones missing were the elderly miko who was too old to handle the rigours of a long winter trip, even by youkai means, his hanyou half-brother and his mate, the resurrected miko. Internally he shuddered. The daiyoukai could not understand why InuYasha had wished for the golem to be flesh-and-blood but he had and secretly Sesshoumaru was glad. It had freed the living miko from her attachment, freed her to look for another, to turn to him. Sesshoumaru was no fool. He had seen her loyalty and devotion to those she cared for. If there were traits he craved more than power they would be loyalty and honour. Kagome had an abundance of both.

"Sesshoumaru?" He turned to his pregnant and glowing mate. She held up the paper chain she and the tajija had been working on. Obeying her unvoiced request he picked up the item and passed it to Rin who began draping it over the lower branches she could reach.

"You looked very deep in thought," she murmured softly, but clearly enough to be heard by him.

"I was remembering," he confessed.

Kagome was confused. "Remembering what?"

"The song you sang last Christmas."

She looked befuddled for a brief moment then understanding dawned. "Oh!" She grinned. "Do you want me to sing it?" she asked.

He considered the question and shook his head. "Sing something else." He glanced around at the children. "Something appropriate for everyone."

Kagome thought about his criteria and smiled broadly. "I have something perfect. 'So this is Christmas' by Celine Dion."

As she sang everyone stopped and turned to listen. Sesshoumaru smiled internally as he listened to the message in the song. It was perfect for a miko who loved and made friends without qualification, ningen youkai and hanyou alike. One who had willingly loved a hanyou and chosen to commit herself as mate to a daiyoukai, to him, to her once enemy.

He looked up into the inky blue sky with placid gold eyes. Her presence in his life would mean his life would be forever changing but Sesshoumaru found himself quite content knowing that. Life with Kagome would never be boring; and after all he'd lived through boredom was not palatable.

He looked over and smiled almost imperceptibly. Oh yes, with Kagome around life would always be a Wonderland.


The End.


AN: No more parts to this fic.

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