Title: "So Close Yet So Far"
Word Count: About 1,286
Pairing: Sango/Higurashi Kagome (One-sided)
Rating: T
Warning(s): angst, shoujo ai, AU, OOCness?
Live Journal Theme: sacred_20, #17 rebirth (table 2)
Summary: 'Maybe in our next life you won't be so close yet still so far from my heart, Kagome. Maybe I'll finally have the courage to tell you how much I love you.'
Disclaimer: I don't own InuYashaor its characters because Rumiko Takashi-sama has that right to claim, so I'm definitely not making any money on this thing...

The aroma of strong coffee lingers heavily in the air of the small, dimly lit roadside shop. Whispers of a few conversations and the tinkling of the doorbell every now and then when a customer comes in are the only sounds really heard. If one is to glance out of the windows from one of the sitting booths, he or she could certainly discern that dawn is soon to blush the sky, but the person would also see the rain misting the streets of Tokyo.

The shop is pretty popular because the employees are so kind, the coffee and food are always delicious, and the place is such a comfortable place to be. Teenagers hang out here or study here in the afternoons. Businessmen come early in the morning to pick up their coffee before rushing off to work. Policemen like their coffee and dough nuts during their breaks. I'm only naming a few kind of people, though, because there are actually a lot of different people that drift in and out of this place each day, even the lost looking ones like me, who just need a place other than home to be.

My apartment is just a few blocks away from here, but I really don't see that lonely, desolate place as my home. I just sleep there. My real home is this coffee shop...has been for quite a few years...especially when I finished up college a couple of years ago. I'm up here at 4 am when the place opens and gone when it closes at 11 pm.

I know I seem strange because I never talk, even when I purchase my espresso and chocolate chip cookie for breakfast, my salad and bottled water for lunch, and my cheese burger, fries, and a medium coke for supper at the register. I don't even speak with the other customers. I just nod my head if I'm acknowledged, which rarely ever happens. It's like I'm just a natural part of this place...something that becomes so obvious it can't help but be overlooked. I've felt like that my whole life, you know...just overlooked...but I guess I really don't mind. I'm shy anyway...and talking makes me so nervous. I'd rather people think I'm a mute. I imagine they think I'm other things, too, especially the owner, or maybe she doesn't even think about me at all...

She probably doesn't even see the pale woman always clad in a t-shirt, jeans, and tennis shoes sitting in the far booth either looking out the window, typing on her lab top, or gazing longingly at her behind the cash register. She probably doesn't even know I wear glasses, that my eyes are chocolate brown, that my braided raven hair reaches the back of my knees, that I'm twenty-four to her twenty-three, or that my name is Sango Ryu. I doubt she even knows an internationally acclaimed author is always vacating her shop in the same spot and ordering the same thing day in and day out. If she doesn't even know I exist, there's no way she could know I'm in love with her...that I've loved her from the moment I first laid eyes on her in grade school.

Kagome Higurashi-Kiba...

That's her name. I've watched over Kagome for so many years. I'm her silent guardian you could say...always making sure she's happy and well taken care of. On occasion, I even leave her gifts, that I know she thinks are from her husband, her high school sweet heart, Inuyasha Kiba. I wish I could hate him for having my most beloved treasure...but I don't...because Kagome's happy. That's all that matters...all that will ever matter.

The thing that I fell in love with most about Kagome happened to be her light...a bright light inside her that has always drawn everyone to her. She's so caring, sweet, and helpful to others, but she's protective, loyal, and courageous as well. She's never been afraid to smile or speak her mind like I am. She's not afraid of relationships or people. She's never a stranger to anyone because no one can overlook the beauty of her pure, shining soul.

Her light brown eyes are soft and warm like honey, and her voice is friendly and gentle as the spring breeze. Kagome's curly raven hair is about ear length. She might have the adorable baby face, but her body is definitely molded to be a woman with all those tender curves. I can only wonder if her crimson lips are as smooth as the mortal red substance that flows in her veins.

Speaking of which...

I can't help but glance over at the lean muscled male with a flowing, waist length, silver white mane of hair as he pulls Kagome's smaller form into his arms and steals a passionate goodbye kiss from her. I wish I could turn my head away...save my heart from the pain of not having her...yet again. I wish Kagome was kissing me instead of him, but I also wish I was Inuyasha, so I could touch her and whisper my love to her whenever I desired. I wish I could know whether her lips are as smooth as they seem...whether her taste is as addicting as I imagine.

I watch him let her go and head out the door to go to work with a satisfied smile on his face and a content look in his amber eyes, and I can only envy him more. My heart squeezes and my breath catches at the beautiful sight gracing my eyes. Kagome is leaning against the wall for support from the intense encounter with her husband, and upon her face is the most blissful smile...as if she is in heaven...and life could get no better than what she had just experienced. The lazy, sated look in her half lidded eyes is enough to make lava explode in my veins and butterflies to wildly brush their wings against my stomach.

I rip my gaze away from her, my eyes clenched shut. It's not right to love and want her when she's already claimed...when she's already a mother. It's not right when I'm a woman as well...not right that I'm just a mere stranger to her...

After regaining my composure a few minutes later, I slowly stand to my feet. I walk to the cash register finding that she's back to normal again, too. She looks up at me with those gorgeous brown eyes.

"The usual, ma'am?" I nod suddenly realizing she does know I exist, even if it's in such a small way.

I can't stop myself from awkwardly smiling at her for the first time. She seems shocked; however, she instantly gives me one of her heartfelt grins in return and sets to getting my breakfast.

Perhaps, I'll never have my heart's desire...perhaps, she sees me as just another customer...perhaps she thinks we're worlds apart. But...I'm always closer than she'll ever know...and I'm happy as long as Kagome is.

"Thank you, Kagome." I whisper to her after she gives me my order and I, her money. I can't help but savor the brief second our hands touch...

I then turn around and hurry back to my seat knowing fully well I've shocked her for the second time today. She doesn't have time to dwell on my unnatural behavior, though, because the morning rush comes through the door with the rise of the sun.

Maybe in our next life you won't be so close yet still so far from my heart, Kagome. Maybe I'll finally have the courage to tell you how much I love you. I close my eyes at those silent thoughts letting my head drop next to my meager breakfast.

"Just maybe..."