Author-chan's notes: I LIVE! I know. I bet everyone thought I died or something, or gave up this fic. But fear not! I breathe new life into it, or something like that…

Many apologies for making everyone wait so long…I'm sorry I've been neglecting this story. Between working on my other fics, homework, writer's block, the human thing called laziness, and my computer breaking down, things have been rough.

Well, on with the fic!

A Clean Slate

(Chapter Twenty-seven: To Shoot the One You Love)

Back in Aki's hut

Kagome had her bow stretched taut, the arrow aimed at Inuyasha's youkai form. The girl from the future felt like her mind was completely thrown into chaos. There was a full demon Inuyasha and a dead body that all but screamed that it had been killed by the youkai. There was a full human Inuyasha there as well, still in child form. The sight before her all but screamed impossibility… after all there can't be two Inuyashas.

Unless of course this was one of Naraku's tricks. That meant that one of the two Inuyashas was a fake. Did Naraku make a new spawn that could shape shift?

"Stupid girl," Youkai Inuyasha growled, causing Kagome to jump slightly. Despite the fact the movement was slight, Kagome still accidentally let go of the arrow, causing it to speed towards the red eyed demon.

To the surprise of everyone, Youkai Inuyasha grabbed the arrow from midair. A sharp hiss sounded through the room as the purifying abilities of the sacred arrow began to burn the flesh of the youkai, causing a few wisps of smoke to curl around his hand.

"Shimatta!" Youkai Inuyasha swore, tossing the arrow on the floor. Suddenly, he became a blur as he rushed towards the door, knocking Kagome down in the process.

The youkai ran off into the night, and no one dared or could track it.


Back with Kumo and Miho

"Are you telling me that Shiro is the murderer of my brother?" Kumo yelped. Miho nodded. She had explained to the spider demon everything about Shiro, how he was Inuyasha, how he was the hanyou that had killed Kumo's elder brother.

"Hai," Miho nodded, "He's Inuyasha, placed under a spell."

"Chikuso!" Kumo cursed, "Chikuso! Chikuso, CHIKUSO!"

Miho yelped as the earth behind the spider demon exploded with the force of Kumo's youki.

"Damn it," Kumo hissed, his posture slumping a bit as a trace of sorrow danced within his crimson eyes.

"Kumo," Miho whispered, reaching out to touch him. He simply shrugged away from her touch, laughing without any humor."

"I suppose," Kumo murmured in his spider youkai accent, "that I shall have to kill him."

"Why is that?" Miho asked, trying not to waver at the change in her lover's tone, "There has to be an explanation why Inu –no –why Shiro killed your brother. Shiro-chan, regardless of whether or not he is human, youkai, or something in between, would not have such a disregard for life as to kill without a reason."

"Does thou think such things matter?" Kumo snarled, glaring at her with bloody eyes, "It is a matter of honor, woman."

"Is the honor of the dead more important than that of the living?" Miho shrieked, "There will be no honor for you or your brother if you just go off and kill Shiro-chan!"

"Among my kind…"

"Then stop being your kind," Miho interrupted, "You have no ties to them. You have ties to me. To us, the family you found in the village."

There was a long pregnant pause. Then suddenly Kumo chuckled softly.

"Ah, Miho-koishii," he murmured, his voice switching back to his gentler human cadence, "You make it sound so simple…"

"It is."

"Nothing is simple anymore," the spider demon sighed.


Back in the hut

"W-What was that thing?" Kimiko gasped, looking towards the way Inuyasha's youkai half had fled. Aki ran over to where his sister had collapse, wrapping his arms protectively around her.

"Inu youkai," Yumiko answered tightly, looking at Masato's corpse, "Make that a bloodthirsty, insanely powerful, out of control inu youkai."

"But how did it get here?" Kimiko yelped, "It-he k-killed Masato!"

"I can answer that," Aki said stiffly, then he turned his eyes to Kagome, "But first things first. Who are you?"

"She's Kagome," Shiro answered with confidence.

"Eh?" Yumiko blinked, "Shiro-chan, are you gaining back your memories."

"I-I don't know," Shiro blinked, "But I know her, I think."

"And I know you, I think," Kagome murmured, coming closer to the violet-eyed human boy who had once been an amber-eyed hanyou and wrapping her arms around him.

"Then who am I, Kagome?" Shiro asked, blinking up at her.

"You are –"

"Kagome-chan!" a voice from outside called.

"Sango-chan! Miroku-sama!" Kagome greeted as her two friends rushed into the hut.

"Kami-sama!" Sango whispered, her eyes widening when they landed on Masato's body, "What happened?"

"Youkai Inuyasha," Kagome replied.

"But wasn't Inuyasha stuck in the form of a human child, Kagome-sama?" Miroku asked.

"He still is," Kagome answered, gesturing to the little boy in her arms.

"NANI?" several voices chimed as one, including two from outside.

"Kumo! Miho!" Yumiko greeted the newcomers, "You're back!"

"Yeah," Kumo muttered as he and Miho entered the rapidly crowding hut, "But I've got questions especially for you, Shiro-chan. Or should I say Inuyasha?"

"Nani?" Shiro blinked, "W-what the hell is going on?"

"Masato!" Miho cried, seeing the body on the floor, "Kami-sama! He's dead!"

"Aa," Aki nodded sadly, "We need to bury him. Let's go outside; we'll give Masato his last rites and exchange stories."


Meanwhile with Youkai Inuyasha

The red-eyed demon lay back against the tree he had perched himself in, grinning madly to himself.

Free. Free! Free! Free!

He was out of that confining hanyou/human body, finally! Free to do what he wished, free to kill what he wanted…oh the rapture of it all!

And speaking of rapture…

"Time to look through Ningen's eyes," the youkai snickered, reaching out with his mind to view his other half's thoughts.

"Ah…Kagome," the youkai grinned to himself. His other self was standing next to her, that miko bitch. His miko bitch.

Youkai Inuyasha's smile grew wider.

Soon. Soon. Soon.

"Soon, you're mine, Kagome…"


Back at Aki's hut

Slowly, everyone filed outside, Aki carrying Masato's body wrapped in a mat. The last ones to leave were Kagome and Shiro/Inuyasha.

"Kagome?" the child that had once been Inuyasha implored as soon as the two of them where alone.

"Hai?" Kagome answer looking down at the boy. The boy's face was turned away from her, but she could see (surprises of surprises!) that he was flushing madly.

"I-I'm not human, am I?" Shiro whispered, "This face, this body, it's all a sham, isn't it?" Kagome merely nodded.

"I'm the one that killed Kumo's brother," Shiro continued, "I'm the other half of that…that thing that killed Masato…the thing that nearly killed everyone else…"

"W-what do you mean?" Kagome asked, bending down to look into the eyes of the unusually gloomy boy. She had almost forgotten…Inuyasha felt pain too sometimes.

"I can hear his thoughts, Kagome," Shiro gritted out, looking her straight in the eye, "Even though he's far away, I can feel him. I am him! I can feel his…my…our need to kill! He'll kill everything in his path! And something else! Something worse! Keep away from him, me, us, or you'll…he'll…"

"Inuyasha!" Kagome cried out as Shiro collapsed into her arms, unconscious.


A few minutes later…

"So he can still hear his other half?" Sango asked. Kagome nodded. She had caught up with the others (who had just finished burying Masato) and had quickly told them what had happened.

"This could be bad," Aki murmured, "I bet the youkai can hear Shiro-chan's thoughts as well."

"So that means if we say anything in front of Shiro, that crazy inu can hear it too," Kumo muttered.

"I have a question," Miho began, "How dangerous is Inuyasha's youkai form?"

"That's kind of hard to say," Kagome admitted, "Inuyasha has only transformed a few times, and even then his youkai blood was never in control for this long. But I can say this; from what we've seen there aren't a lot of things that can stop him because he kills them all before they have a chance to do anything."

"Bloodthirsty?" Yumiko asked.

"Beyond reason," Sango nodded, "We've seen him after he killed a wholeband of bandits, and he still wasn't satisfied. Inuyasha's youkai half isn't really a true youkai. A true youkai would never be as out of control as him."

"Damn," Kumo muttered, "So we've got Inuyasha to worry about along with Yumiko's crazy brother."

"Yugata-onii-sama!" Yumiko gasped, "I nearly forgot about him!"

"He'll be coming to attack at dawn, won't he?" Aki murmured, "Or sometime later."

"So we've got two evil youkai to worry about!" Shippo yelped.

"Yeah," Miroku nodded, "But we outnumber them."

"Still," Kagome said thoughtfully, "That might not be enough…"


Back with Yugata

Yugata grinned to himself. As soon as the sun rose, Yumiko and her new friends were as good as dead. Suddenly he saw something out of the corner of his eye.

"Hey! You there!" the male dream youkai shouted out, "What are you doing here?"

"Heheheheh," a cruel voice chuckled. Then, before Yugata could even blink, his heart was torn out of his chest.

"GAHHAK!" Yugata choked, spitting out crimson blood that matched his killer's eyes.

"Thanks for your Shikon shard," Youkai Inuyasha's voice growled as he ripped the piece of crystal out of Yugata's corpse, "Killing you was kinda fun."


Back with Human Inuyasha/Shiro

In his sleep, though surrounded by friends, Shiro moaned, dreaming of bloody eyes and fallen bodies.


Back with Kagome

Kagome didn't like what was happening, not one bit. Shiro was not acting like himself, at all…But then again, getting your soul split in two would cause at the very least personality shifts. And now that Shiro (she just couldn't think of him as Inuyasha, after all, he only carried half of Inuyasha's soul) was hearing his youkai self's thoughts…

'I can't handle this,' Kagome thought as she looked down on Shiro's sleeping face, 'I'm just an ordinary girl!'

"S-Shikon no Tama," Shiro murmured in his sleep.

For some reason, as soon as he said that, Kagome felt even more uneasy.

Author-chan's notes: Writing this chapter was such a chore! And it ended up shorter than I wanted it to be too! It had been such a long time since I had been in the Inuyasha universe (I've been spending most of my time in the Rurouni Kenshin universe). It's a good thing I still remember the plot of this story, or else I'd be in trouble. I need to get back into the swing of writing Inuyasha again…

If you think Shiro is acting very un-Inuyasha like, I agree. But then again the poor kid did have his soul ripped apart, so he's not going to act as much like Inuyasha as he did in earlier chapters.

And again, sorry for putting this on an over half year (9 month) hiatus. As I mentioned above I've been working more on my RK fics than anything. But the end is in sight for this story, and I am determined not to abandon it, especially when I know the end is near! Damn, but I just noticed how old this story is…Started back in 2002, this fic is less than 5 months shy of its 3rd birthday! Whistles Three years. That's a long time…