No point, in reason or rhyme
just writing this to take up time
Oh yeah and I don't own them
But they're looking for a gem
Hey you've heard this crap before
so let's just get on with the stor....y

A World Away
Chapter 5: Sesshie! Play Nice

I close my eyes and I keep seeing things
Rainbow waterfalls
Sunny liquid dreams
Confusion creep inside me raining doubt
Gotta get to you
But I don't know how
Call me Call me
- Cowboy Bebop

After another long (and annoying) round of explinations to the group known as Avalanche by Kagome, Sesshoumaru came to several conclusions. The beast known as Nanaki was by far one of the most intelligent of this group. Vincent was as he expected, standing off to the side seemingly detacted from, but very aware of the things going on around him. Cait Sith was a... what did they call him? A machine? Cloud liked to hear himself talk and thought he was in charge. Barret was a blowhard who jumped the gun quite often, their inital meeting proved as much. Cid was foul mouthed, he seemed to hold some kind of intelligence though Sesshoumaru had a hard time getting past the smell of his "cigarettes". Tifa acted nothing like he might have expected, given her minimal attire he expected her to act more like a concubine, not the confident woman he was greeted with. And last but not least was the fact that he might actually have been better off with the red-head and his "Turk" friends.

"So what's the plan?" Yuffie asked.

"Well," Cloud began, "I guess we need to find out why they're here and what they need to get back."

"What about the White Materia?" Tifa offered.

"What do you mean?"

"Well Kagome said she was on a quest for these Shikon shards right? What if it's similar to materia? We never really knew what it did, maybe because it's the same as the Shikon."

Kagome shook her head, "I doubt it, the shikon no tama was formed when a miko was fighting a bunch of youkai and she trapped all their souls, and hers, in the jewel. I don't think there would be anyway for you to have one here as well."

"What about them shards?" Cid said, "Mebbe one o' them somehow got over here?"

"You think?"

Cloud shrugged, "Anything is possible, the only problem is how do we find it? We have the whole world to look for one little scrap of a jewel."

"Well," Kagome sighed, "If something here has it, shikon shards have a way of drawing it to other ones." She pulled the bottle out from under her shirt, "So it will eventually find us."

"I think we should look into the white materia as well." Everyone turned to Vincent as he finally spoke. "There is no guarantee that one of those shards is here, and for now that's the only other lead we have."

Sesshoumaru nodded, "I agree." Kagome almost fell over. Sesshoumaru, agreeing with someone? She knew she didn't know him that well, but she found the idea of him agreeing with anyone very hard to believe.

"Alright then, we'll leave for Icicle Village tomorrow morning." Cloud decided, "You two might want a crash course in using materia though and we'll need to get you some weapons."

"I have no use for your weapons or those trinkets." Sesshoumaru huffed.

Reno, who still was hanging around more for the chaos he knew would come than any interest in Avalanche, snickered in the corner.

Cloud did not look happy that someone was questioning him, "I can see you have a sword, that's all well and good but I suggest you learn to use materia and learn fast. It could save your life."

"I am not some weak human who needs to borrow my power from some bead."

The look on Cloud's face was priceless. "Look pal, I don't know who you think you are, but you're new here and we know our world alot better than you do." Kagome winced at his words, knowing he was brewing up a lot of trouble fro himself. "So I suggest that you do what I say an-urk-"

Before anyone knew it Sesshoumaru had moved across the room and was holding the spiky haired merc off the floor by his neck. His voice was frighteningly calm as he spoke. "How dare you try and give orders to I, Sesshoumaru. I have lived for more than two hundred years and fought off things far more dangerous than those creatures I faced on the mountain last night, on my own. So I will decide what I need and need not do while I am here." He lowered Cloud to the floor, though his timing had nothing to do with Barret's gun arm pointed at him or the other threatening stances of Avalanche. "If I were you I would not presume anything of people you know so little about. I have not retained my title as Lord of the Western Lands by offering my challengers tea."

"eh.. Sesshoumaru-sama perhaps you could let go of Cloud now?" Kagome asked nervously, "Please? His face is changing colors."

Sesshoumaru simply cast his gaze in the miko's direction for a moment. He had planned on letting the man go soon anyway. While he may have been an idiot (at least in Sesshoumaru's view) he doubted that he would get the aid of his friends if he were to kill him. He shot one last glare at the suffocating blonde before letting go. Cloud slumped and coughed violently, Tifa catching him before he fell over. Without casting the man a second glance Sesshoumaru walked outside.

"Did I mention," Yuffie laughed nervously, "that Sesshoumaru is a bit difficult to deal with?"

"Gee ya think?" Cid muttered sarcastically, "The guy's an asshole."

"What about you Kagome? Would you like some new weapons and materia?" Vincent asked, seemingly unfazed by the events that occured before him.

Kagome nodded a bit unsure, "Well Yuffie taught me a bit about materia yesterday. And I have a bow already, so I don't want to put you guys and make you buy something for me."

"Let me see it." the red clad man requested.

Feeling somewhat insecure under his gaze, which was similar to Sesshoumaru's only more haunted than cold, Kagome fetched her bow from the corner and handed it to him.

Cid lit another cigarette, "God damn girl, where'd you get that thing? From a fuckin' museum!?"

"Well it works," Kagome said, "And I don't want you guys to spend your money on me when we hardly know each other

"Well at least one of you has some manners," Cloud coughed. Reno reined in another laugh, Well isn't that the pot calling the kettle black? "Come on, we'll go get you a better bow." Kagome blushed as Cloud took hold of her wrist and led her out the door. He just wanted to get as far away from the youkai lord as possible right now.

***


She groaned slightly, straining her eyes open. Wow, she thought, that trip was allot rougher than I thought it would be. Wait a second? What trip? As she forced her eyes open she tried to think of where she was and what she was supposed to be doing. I'm not on Gaia, I remember that... mother sent me here, but why? Something about... about a balance.

"Ahh, I see you're awake." She turned her head to the old woman, she seemed to be in a shack or hut of some kind with a fire pit in the middle. It was about then she realized she was wearing a kind of robe. "Here, eat this." She took the bowl of soup from her gratefully. "What's you're name dear?"

"Aeris, Aeris Gainsburough."

"I am Kaede, Inu Yasha found you by the bone eater's well, along with this." She pulled the staff out from behind her and Aeris immediately recognized her princess guard. The woman then also handed her the gauntlets. "I hope you do not mind but I had it seen to that your clothes were cleaned. Might I ask where the blood came from?"

"Blood?" A hand reflexively went to her abdomen. Images flashed through her mind, the temple, the altar, Cloud, then pain, she never saw who did it to her, but she knew. "Sephiroth..." she whispered.

"Pardon?"

Aeris shook her head and smiled, "Nothing, it... I don't know how to explain it." She put the bowl down and idly went about checking the materia in her weapon and armor.

"Kaede-baba is she awake yet!?" Inu Yasha growled before walking in. Upon seeing the girl in question sitting up and awake he crouched down in front of her. "Where's Kagome and what was Sesshoumau doing near the well!?"

Aeris simply stared at the boy, were those ears real? She slowly reached up a hand to the top of his head, they flattened and he immediately ducked once they made contact with one of his ears. "Sorry, They just looked so cute, I couldn't resist."

Inu Yasha blushed, then shook it off. "Look do you know where Kagome is or not?"

Aeris blinked, she had an idea of what happened, but not anything to specific, like names. "I remember.. a girl.. she had black hair and a short skirt, and a man with long white hair and marks on his face," He looked so similar, but he wasn't Sephiroth. "I think he had one arm."

"Sesshoumaru," Inu Yasha growled. "What happened? What did you see?"

Aeris backed up a bit at his growl. "I didn't actually see anything... but I know for some reason." She thought a moment, "Mother told me, before she sent me here."

"What did she say?" The hanyou asked not caring how crazy she was sounding, she knew something and that's what counted. "What happened?"

"Inu Yasha perhaps you should calm down, you're going to frighten the poor girl."

"They went through the well, I was sent here to help balance things between the worlds until they return."

"You mean they went back to her time?" Kaede asked somewhat worried.

Aeris shook her head, "No, they went to my world. They went to Gaia. Now if you don't mind me asking... where am I?"

***


Kagome picked up another bow, it looked far more elaborate than any she had ever used. Of course all the ones she had used before were made in Sengoku Jidai where the technology was very limited. She pulled on the string, testing it's weight in her hands. "Do you have a target I can try it on?" she asked the shop keeper who nodded and led her and the others out back. The miko took the arrow the man handed her, once again far better than any she had yet to use. It's deadly point gleamed in the sunlight, the arrow was more balanced, and a bit heavier than what she was used to.

She fit the arrow and aimed, not so used to a stationary target. Slowly she drew the weapon back, it was a bit harder to pull on then her own bow. She closed her eyes a moment then opened them and let fly.

-thud-

"Wow that's a good shot Kagome-chan!" Yuffie announced. She hit just inside the rim of the large middle circle.

"I didn't think I'd even hit the middle part..." she looked at where she hit, "I'll have to aim higher next time, I'm used to lighter arrows."

Reno went up to the target and pulled out the arrow. "I'm sure you will get used to it in time kid," he replied as he walked back.

"What are you doing here?" Cloud asked distastefully.

"Hey I just wanna go along with one o' my new pals when she goes weapon shoppin'. Got a problem with that?"

"She's a 'new pal' Of yours?"

"Yeah sure why not?" He asked draping an arm over the miko's shoulders. Kagome blushed, why did these people have to take physical contact so casually? "Besides I wanna make sure they don't rip her off or somethin'." He turned a grin to her, "Right?"

"Uhh... sure."

Yuffie rolled her eyes, "Get off it Reno. I got that end covered and you know it. Besides you know Cloud is paying for it and since when do you care about his money?"

The Turk's arm slid off the miko's shoulders and he shrugged, "Do you always try and take the fun out of everything Kisaragi?"

Yuffie offered a smirk, "Nah that's usually Cloud's job."

The mercenary nodded, "Yeah.. hey!"

***


"I see..." the flower girl muttered, as she finished re-braiding her hair. "Well in that case while I'm here I'll help you."

The hanyou blinked, "What?"

"I'm going to help you find those Shieki shards."

"Look only Kagome can sense the Shikon shards. How can you help us?"

"Well," Aeris smiled grabbing her staff, "I can fight."

"Keh," the hanyou obviously did not believe her.

"I can!"

"Ahh I see the young lady is awake." Aeris looked up and saw a young man in flowing blue and purple robes with a staff walking in. Not too far behind him was a young woman in white and green who had, apparently, leaned a large board against the side of the hut before entering. The hanyou simply huffed and seemed content to pout in his spot while they entered.

Aeris was about to introduce herself when a red and blue ball of hyperness flew at her landing right in her lap. "Whoareyou?Where'sKagome?She'sgonnacomebackright?"

The cetra was about to coo reassurances to the strange little boy with the pointed ears and fluffy tail when he was plucked out of her lap by the tail. "Now Shippo didn't we agree not to bombard her like this?" The man asked.

'Shippo's' lip quivered as he began to pout, "But I miss Kagome!!" he began to wail. Moments later Inu Yasha's clawed fist came in contact with the kit, knocking him out of the man's grasp and into the wall. Aeris gasped in horror as the boy slid down the wall, undoubtedly seeing birds around his head. Suddenly he jumped up and glared at Inu Yasha, baring his fangs in an irresistibly cute way. "What'd ya do that for ya big jerk!?"

"Like you don't know," Inu Yasha began.

"Don't mind them," the young woman said, "They're always like this. It's almost like they were brothers."

Inu Yasha stopped in the middle of giving a noogie to Shippo and both yelled in offense, "We are not!" Then the kit bit Inu Yasha's hand, causing the hanyou to release his mischievous prey. With that Shippo bolted out the door with Inu Yasha close on his heels.

Aeris simply stared. "I'm Sango," the woman said again, offering a friendly smile.

"Aeris," the cetra responded.

In a flash she fond her hands before held between those of the young man's. "And I am the Miroku. Fair Aeris would you do me the honor of bearing my children?"

The flower girl simply stared a moment before turning bright red. Sitting there as stunned as she was gave Sango more than enough time to grab Miroku's staff and begin to beat him with it. "You perverted houshi! You haven't known her for five minutes and already you... you.. ARRRGH!!" And before she knew it Miroku was running out of the hut with his staff flying after him, only to be intercepted by Inu Yasha's head as he ran after... a bush?

She blinked slowly then looked at Sango, who seemed well composed again, then Kaede who simply sighed. "Are... are they always like this?"

"Yes I'm afraid so," Kaede answered, "Are you sure you still want to help them?"

Aeris shrugged, "Well, It's not like there's anything else for me to do."

***


Sesshoumaru sat in the window of "his" room in Yuffie's house. His tail swaying lazily on the ground and every once in a while in mild irritation. He looked out at the unfamiliar sky to find some unknown constellation. He bit back a sigh and looked over at the maps he had spread out on the table. There was so much ground to cover and they weren't even really sure what they were looking for! And to top it off they hadn't even started yet. We only have hunches to go on, he thought to himself, it seems we will be going nowhere fast until we get something more solid to go on... Of course, he though with half amusement half distaste, these are not exactly the most intellectual people. They are more like soldiers, waiting for a true commander, not another brute, to lead them. He turned his gaze back to the sky, Vincent or Nanaki would likely be a good leader, though it seems neither wants to take up the position. His eyes narrowed, This is going to take a while if that yellow haired freak is in charge the whole time. The youkai closed his eyes and took a deep breath, This is definitely going to try my patience.

As he let the breath out he heard footsteps approaching his door. Hopefully they were just passing by. No such luck the foot steps stopped outside the door.

There was a light knock. "Sesshoumaru-san?"

"Yes?" The door slid open slowly and Kagome stood before the threshold, wondering whether or not she should enter. "Are you going to stand there or come in?"

She blushed lightly stepped in then closed the door behind her. "Sesshoumaru-sama," she began, "I know you don't exactly like these people but they're willing to help us."

"Cloud is an idiot like my brother. How is it people like them manage to get others to follow them?"

Kagome crossed her arms infront of herself, "Maybe it's because they have a personality Sesshoumaru-san." He wished she would pick one honorific and go with it.

"Say what you wanted to say and leave."

"See?" She pointed, "That's exactly what I'm talking about! You don't have to be so cold and withdrawn all the time Sesshoumaru-san! Kami forbid you should warm up to people and actually be liked."

"What did you come in to say?" He repeated, not bothering to look in her direction.

Kagome sighed, "Kami, it's hopeless. Well look all I wanted to say was please don't attack any of them again ok? They are trying to help us after all and please please please at least try not to treat them like you think they're idiots."

The youkai turned his gaze upon the girl, "Until they prove otherwise I will treat them as such."

Kagome sighed again and put a hand to her head. "Please Sesshoumaru-sama, just try not to insult them. If we loose their help we may be stuck here and I know you want that as much as I do."

"I will consider your request." He said simply.

Taking that as close to a 'yes' as she was going to get from the demon lord Kagome bowed, "Thank you Sesshoumaru-sama." Then she left and Sesshoumaru went back to staring out at the night sky.

***


On the other side of the door Kagome sighed and walked back down to the living room where a few of the others were sitting. If he's always this difficult then it's no wonder Inu Yasha hates him so much, she thought to herself. Then she stopped a moment. Oh Kami, she thought her head rolling back in despair, We're going on the Highwind tomorrow! She remembered , they had breifly showed her the ship earlier in the day and somehow she did not think that the Youkai Lord of the Western Lands would take well to machines. Especially the smell, she realized. The oil, while not that obvious to her, would probably not be very well accepted by the taiyoukai. Not to mention there were probably tons of other things she wasn't taking into account. How am I gonna keep him from killing anybody? Oh God I'm gonna have to get to know him! The miko sighed and shook her head, "Kami we are so screwed," she muttered, realizing just how hard this to in fact be.

----------------------------------------
Hika-chan: What? Ok yeah I don't like Cloud that much, but I'm not sure if I'm going to portray him as Sesshoumaru sees him so far. Or what he's gonna do about it. Why don't I like Cloud? I dunno.. maybe it's because everyone else is so much F*cking cooler!
Cid: Hey Chibi-things shouldn't curse!
Reno: Yeah that's our job anyway
Hika-chan: Oh please...
Reno: If you stop cursing I'll give you a cookie.
Hika-chan: Really!?
Reno: *nods*
Hika-chan: I'll be good! *Reno gives her a cookie* YAY!!! *jumps on Reno and hugs him* That's why I love you guys so much!
Reno: *Grins* Yep, Cloud just don't know how to please the ladies
Hika-chan: Can I have another cookie!?
Reno: err... yeah, I left a bag in Yuffie's house. *HC cheers and runs off*
Cid: Didja really?
Reno: Hell no, let's get outta here before she finds out.*Cid and Reno run into the Highwind and fly away*