Pilot Chapter! If it does well I will update it!
The Kings Concubines
Chapter 1: Misfortune or Luck
"I've had it!" Screamed an angry young woman, as she stomped her way down the long wooden hallway as fast as she could. Her fists were balled angrily at her side as she made her way to her room.
A fat plump woman ran out of the nice and lavish house followed by a sea of girls running around yelling about a fire. Her ornate robes whipped about her as she tried to weave through the many girls in the hallway to get to the woman-child. The feet of the normally docile ladies were heavy against the wood floors as they rushed to save their belongings and themselves. Smoke billowed from out of the windows and doors into the street making a few cough and cry at their misfortune. Men rushed in to immediately help put out the growing fire in the beautiful building coming from somewhere in the back.
Running to the front step, the infuriated older woman picked up the nearest item towards her which happened to be a shoe and threw it out at the most disrespectful, disobedient, woman child she'd ever expected to train in her long years of geisha training. "Come back here!" She screamed angrily.
The young woman dodged it subconsciously while bending down to throw her items in her makeshift traveling pack. She stuffed a yakuta, her mother's hair clip, a purse, and other little knick-knacks inside. "The nerve!" She mumbled under her breath. She paused as her hand hovered over a letter with a crescent seal on the top of the page tucked inside of her bag. She pulled it out carefully, eyes scanning the seal quickly before placing it to the side. She tightened the knot of the sash on her bag and hauled her things over her shoulder. Carefully, she picked the letter up and held it like a lifeline in her hand. She looked around the room for anything she may have left behind before rushing forward back into the chaotic hallway. She looked down at the paper again, reading it carefully again for the millionth time upon receiving the notice. "Crescent City" She muttered softly looking at the elegant writing on the fine paper with hopeful brown eyes. Suddenly the paper was ripped from her hands. "Hey!" She screamed trying to get it back from the enraged woman.
The angry woman ripped it apart in front of her not realizing the information she just destroyed. Full of fury, Kagome bent down and picked up some of the broken pieces into her hand before making her way towards the door. Everything was going fine until she was so rudely notified that in this particular region, being a geisha meant performing sexual acts instead of its traditional respected trade. There she was training like she would do every morning when she was "summoned" into the main room by her headmistress. It was then that some sleezy old man with no teeth sat before her and made it known he wanted her for the night. And she couldn't believe that her headmistress was just going to hand her over and dared to put a price on her.
She was in shock until the man made a move to get to her. She lost it! She didn't care who he was or how much he paid. She would never sink so low to do such a thing. Sleeping with all kinds of crazy men for money and dare to call herself geisha. She fought to get out of that room so fast that she may have caused a few candles to spill and few items to catch fire. But to her ideals, it was a small price to pay for the sanctity of her virginity. Now smoke and fire was enveloping the place that she tried her best to make work for her new life.
"How dare you, you little ingrate!" Furiously yelled the old woman who wore the face of a painted geisha yet the wardrobe of a streetwalker underneath her fine red silk robes and silver jewelry. She wobbled furiously after the young lady who continued to stomp towards the door with her things in tow.
"I refuse to do such an act! And you call yourselves geisha!" The young woman mumbled as she swung open the door and then slammed it behind her. "And you don't own me!" She yelled angrily as she tried to hold onto all the torn pieces of paper in her hands.
The large woman ran to the front door and ripped open the door practically off the building. "Higurashi, Kagome! Mark my words! You will never work in this town or in any other town again!" She yelled as a few women rushed past her practically pushing her out of the doorway onto the street. The smoke causing her to cough a little bit as more came in to save the once glorious establishment. "You hear me! You will remain unmarriageable and ugly for the rest of your miserable pathetic life!"
"Well it beats sleeping with old men and working for you!" Kagome said as she turned and hiked her stuff on her shoulder making a quick exit from the hell house that she thought of calling home. The woman they called Kagome, stuffed the torn papers into a pocket on her dress and kept forward on the path. She stomped the rest of the way trying to get out of the city as quickly and safely as possible. People were looking at her strangely as she walked by wearing her simple summer light yellow yakuta with her hair messily pulled on top of her head. After making it a good distance out of the town, Kagome climbed a hill top to get a better view of her current situation.
She looked back at the town that she had just ran from and sighed at her misfortune. She realized that she had brought no water or food with her. She had no living relatives or a place to call home. Money was going to be really tight as she only had a few coins in her purse. Looking into her pocket she pulled out the pieces of paper which started new hopes and dreams for her that would not come true now. The geisha house had got word that his majesty was looking for a concubine and would only accept the most cultivated from each celebrated house to be tested and chosen for the position. But that dream was now up in flames much like the geisha house she ran away from was probably in now.
She looked up into the dark night sky noticing the moon had shown her kindness that night. Not only had it provided her some light, but it guided her towards another town not far by foot that she could see from the hilltop. The King's city was not too far from this town. If she was lucky, she would make it and see if she could find work. Taking it as a beacon of hope she stuffed the pieces of paper back into her pocket and followed the moons soft rays towards the city which could have new possibilities.
"Way to go Kagome, now what?" Mumbled the poor woman as she aimlessly walked through the streets of the rinky-dink village. The moon had lied to her. This town seemed more run down then the one she left before it. People were all over the place trying to get what errands they could get done before the sun began to set. Dust and dirt swept up into the air. Cattle and other livestock were being herded through the streets. Street vendors were yelling and bartering their wares away to different crowds of people. The scent of cooked meat from one vendor on the side made her stomach grumble and she stopped to clutch it feeling the pain of hunger in her sides. Stopping she looked in money pouch for the hundredth time just in case she might have overlooked any gold coins that may have been lost in its shallow depths. Sighing in disappointment, she looked up at the blue clear sky noticing how hot it had become. The sun blazed unapologetically without a cloud in sight to block its rays. Kagome brushed the top of her forehead to wipe away some of the sweat that had begun to bead as her mind wondered over her current predicament.
How she wished she was back home where things made since. But life had been cruel and it would not be helping her anytime soon. Not paying much attention she continued to walk forward and look at the sky.
'Hump!' Kagome grumbled as she became sprawled out on the dirt floor with various items spilling on top of her. A few cans and cloth hit her in the face causing her to yell in fright. Rubbing her back from the slight pain she peeked through her eye lashes to see whom she had bumped into. A young demon scrambled across the dirt floor grabbing the items that had fallen while mumbling something about clumsy village women.
"S-sorry!" She said as she made to sit upright. Shocked to see a demon in her midst she backed away a little bit. She looked out to see a little green toad dressed in some sort of official uniform with an emblem of a crescent moon on the front of his robes. She looked down on the dirt path to see what looked to be expensive silks of blue and red hues lying about. Feeling awful, she proceeded to help the young man gather the fallen items. She reached to grab at one of the silks when her hand was slapped away.
"Hey!" Kagome yelled in annoyance.
"Don't touch this with your filthy hands, clumsy girl!" He screeched as he checked the damage on the items. "Now they will need to be soaked for days!"
"I'm really sorry!" She said warily as a crowd of people began to come forth over the pair whispering various words. One which caught was the word "punishment".
Trying to stay calm she stood continuing trying to help him stand without causing the items to fall again.
"And what pray tell is taking so long? We must get back before I am sent after by his majesty." Said a woman as the crowd parted ominously for her presence. Kagome froze at who she was seeing. The loveliest looking woman around her age layered in delicate silks of pinks and whites came forth eyeing the situation.
"Are you ok?" She asked Kagome who only could nod but was mesmerized at her once in a lifetime opportunity of seeing one of the king's most favored concubines, Lady Sango.
Lady Sango looked like the exact image of every poem and sonnet wrote about her. The paintings depicting her image did not do her beauty justice. Her heavily silk layered frames were accented with gold stitching of cherry blossoms. Adorning her ears were flower shaped golden earrings. Her long deep brown hair was down her back and held in an ornate pink and gold ribbon with bangs that framed her face. Her eyelids had pink shadow which really made her chocolate eyes lighten and her lips were dusted in something pink.
Looking down again at the toad like demon, Kagome eyed the silver moon on the front of his uniform realizing to whom the silks she may have damaged belonged to. Scrambling to brush off her dirty hands she bowed deeply to the beautiful woman and the angry demon. "I'- I'm fine, My Lady." She stammered helplessly.
"That stupid girl caused all the silks to become filthy much like her state of dress." Yelled the little toad yokai as he stumbled carrying the stack of silks over to her.
Kagome could feel her ears burn with embarrassment and self-consciousness as she looked down at her tattered yellow kimono. It had gathered many stains unfortunately due to her new lifestyle on the road. It was hard to find a river to clean her clothes in without the risk of mud or some thugs coming by to harm her. Her mind began to wonder over the possible consequences of fear as to what would be her punishment for causing such expensive items to become tarnished.
The crowd grumbled at this as well wondering what would happen next. Kagome's anxiety increased as more and more people came over to witness her fate. A few military men came from nowhere bowing to the Lady waiting for her command followed by the sound of horses. Kagome then bowed down on her knees and looked to her thighs, knowing that she should not make eye contact now.
Lady Sango smiled softly at the poor girl who seemed to be ready for decapitation. She looked over her face and scanned her down to her dirtied feet. She looked at how Kagome stood and the pretty color of her eyes that were so unusual. They were deep and big like the most enchanted of forests ready to swallow an adventurer and sell him a dream filled with riches. A thought then gathered in her head. Smiling she gently put a finger underneath Kagome's chin causing her to rise and look up at her with wide eyes. "Rise please."
Standing, Kagome stood stiffly hoping that she would not get chewed out in front of everyone, or worse forced to pay somehow for the damage she may have caused with her life. "I ap- apologize for your silks. Pl-please forgive me!"
Lady Sango brushed back her black hair a little bit before smiling softly. "It's quite all right. Jaken can get more if I wish it." She mumbled as she continued to analyze Kagome's face. The demon squawked offensively at her comment but she paid him no mind.
Shifting nervously Kagome stood there as Lady Sango seemed to eye her up and down carefully. Kagome's caramel eyes scanned the crowd around as silence stretched on. She thought these people would continue with their business instead of being nosy and stare blatantly at her poor situation. Lady Sango gripped her chin and began to move it side to side gradually before letting her go and stepping back to put space between them.
"Perfect." She muttered as the smile on her face began to grow wider. "Now tell me, what is your occupation? She asked enthusiastically.
Kagome gaped a few times before she was finally able to get sound out. "No-Nothing. I- I mean I use to be a pri- priestess then…I became ge-geisha…and now I am trying to make it to the King's City to learn more about becoming the King's conc-"
Sango quickly put her finger over her lips to get her to be silent. "We will discuss this in private." Pleased at the luck that she had encountered this morning, Lady Sango turned swiftly and gracefully began to walk towards her carriage. The crowd parted and the military men cleared the path. Clearing her throat, Lady Sango looked at the poor toad that was standing with piles of silk covering his view as he walked back to the carriage. "Jaken." She called in a clear strong tone.
"Yes, Lady Sango!" He asked as he wobbled a little bit, looking over a few to see what she wanted.
"You may take my silks back to my carriage; I am done shopping for today." She looked at Kagome before turning around to walk back from which she came. "And please prepare the carriage for two occupants." She turned around to look at the poor girl who seemed to not know what to do with herself. Lady Sango cleared her throat again causing Kagome's head to snap up along with everyone else's.
Lady Sango paused and smiled. "What is your name?"
"K- Kagome Higurashi." Kagome stammered.
"Well Higurashi, Kagome come with me. I have something I wish to discuss with you in private." She said as she turned around and began walking forward. Kagome watched as she called over a handsome male in the western military uniform with a long ponytail that came down his back with a giant sword resting on his shoulders. He came up to her and they both shared hushed tones before he took a step back and bowed. As fast as he appeared, he disappeared down the road leading towards the King's City. Hearing no footsteps of the girl's approach, Lady Sango turned around. "Well…don't just stand there! Come on!" She commanded before stepping over to the carriage where she was helped inside by her footman.
Kagome swallowed again before following after Lady Sango. Never had she become so nervous about her life and what was to come since the death of her mother. She looked back wondering if she would have a chance if she made a run for it. As if reading her thoughts, a demon came over and helped her inside. Well more like push her inside. Quickly taking a seat and trying hard not to get dirt on the interior, she sat stiff as a statue. Kagome adjusted her pack on her back warily. She looked up at Lady Sango who seemed to just smile with mischief in her eyes as she looked over at Kagome.
"Well, Kagome, I must ask that you not speak until we get inside my quarters." Lady Sango said as a startled Kagome looked up at her with wide and curious eyes.