UPDATE: This chapter has been edited for easy reading!
A/N: I would like to thank Sleeping Moon for helping me with this story. She said that I inspired her to do a RanmaXKagome, but I think it's the other way around. Thank you, dear! I appreciate all your help. Some parts of this story were her suggestions so I'll probably thank her a lot for the duration of the fanfic.
Anyways, hope you guys enjoy.
Disclaimer: I own nothing except the plot where Kagome is involved (I don't own her either!)
It finally stopped working.
Kagome held out a trembling hand to touch the wood.
It was over.
She can't believe it was finally over. Almost a year of hunting for Jewel shards, and fighting Naraku…
The priestess clutched the cursed Jewel hanging from her neck. It had sent her back to her time without so much as a goodbye to her friends. Kagome smiled bitterly. It was sort of like the first time it took her to the Feudal Era. Talk about déjà vu.
Kagome sucked in a breath as she felt herself crumble beside the well. Tears streamed heavily down her face and her shoulders shook with every sob. She didn't know why she was crying. She had finished her mission. She had done everything, fixed everything.
'Then why? Is this why I was sent to the past? To kill Naraku? That was it? …I should be happy right? One of the greatest threats to mankind was finally gone... But why do I feel so alone? …Inuyasha… Sango-chan… Miroku-sama… Shippo-chan…Kirara…'
Too absorbed in her sorrow, Kagome ignored the injuries she had sustained from the intense battle just moments ago. Her shirt was soaked with blood still flowing from her wounds. She was tattered and bruised, covered in dirt. But she didn't care. Kagome stayed where she was, beside a normal, ancient well, crying softly to herself.
Soon enough, the young priestess succumbed to her body's need to rest.
Souta had come to check the well, just as he did every other day, hoping to find her or Inuyasha. When he saw his sister sprawled on the floor of the well house, he immediately called for help. After a few minutes, the whole Higurashi household had gathered. Mrs. Higurashi let out a gasp of surprise at the state of her daughter. Saving her questions for later, she asked Souta to help her carry Kagome back in the house.
The old man stayed behind and eyed the well warily. Despite being old and spiritually inept, he knew danger when he saw it. Regardless of what Kagome might say when she wakes up, he was going to seal this well. He won't let the same fate befall his family again.
Inside the house, Mrs. Higurashi and Souta fussed over Kagome. They had removed her dirtied garments, cleaned and disinfected her wounds, and set her to bed. The Shikon Jewel was left unnoticed on the miko's neck. After making sure that Kagome's life was out of harm's way, Mrs. Higurashi called a family meeting in the dining room.
"What on Earth could've happened to her over there?" asked the distraught mother.
"Five hundred years in the past… I should've known better than let her continue her journey. I plan to seal the Bone-Eater's Well."
Souta and Mrs. Higurashi looked at the old priest in surprise.
The old man sighed, his brows creased in a frown, "I refuse to let this happen again. Kagome is my grand-daughter… I feel partially responsible for encouraging her about the existence of demons and the spiritual world. She was better off without it!"
Mrs. Higurashi placed a comforting hand over her father's, "Otou-san, don't be so hard on yourself. None of us knew this would happen. Kagome never came back here covered in wounds. We weren't really aware of the dangers she faced five hundred years in the past. However," the two males turned to her at the unusual tone in her normally kind voice, "perhaps, you are right. As her family it is our duty to keep her safe—"
Three pairs of eyes darted to the doorway of the kitchen,
The middle-aged woman got her feet first and steadied her daughter, "Kagome, dear, you should be resting! Your injuries could open up again." The young priestess sighed and tightened her hold on her mother, "You guys don't have to worry about the well. It will never open again."
"Onee-chan, what are you talking about?"
The Shikon Miko was led to a chair and sat down. Inhaling deeply, Kagome looked at her family tiredly, "We finished collecting the Jewel shards and I was transported back here against my will. I think it's the well's way of saying that I can't ever go back—that I've done my job." Her vision blurred, but she did not want her family to worry anymore, so she held back the tears.
Seeing that Kagome was trying to put up a string front, the other members of the family silently agreed to leave it at that.
2 Months Later…
Kagome looked out her window and sighed for the umpteenth time. She would miss this place.
During the same night Kagome was found collapsed near the well, they had all agreed that until powerful and effective sutras can be made, Kagome was to stay at a relative's place. They could not risk a repeat with Miss Centipede or any other demon for that matter. She would also be starting the semester at a new school. Kagome let a faint smile grace her lips, 'A new start, huh? Who knows, Kagome… you might actually enjoy being a normal teenager again…'
There was a knock at her door. Standing up, the miko opened it to see Mrs. Higurashi smiling at her, "Kagome, it's almost time to leave. Are you sure you have everything?"
Kagome nodded, her hand instinctively went to hold the Shikon, "Yep! I'm ready."
Suddenly, her mother's face fell.
"Mama? What's wrong? I'll call you guys every week. I'll even come visit during spring break."
Mrs. Higurashi put a hand on her cheek and sighed, "It's not that. Kagome, dear, it's just such a shame for you to dress up like this. You're such a beautiful girl."
The young priestess laughed slightly, "Mama, we've already been through this. It's much easier to move in boy's clothes. And don't worry, my preferences won't change with my new look!"
The woman gave her daughter a stern glare, "I hope not, Kagome Higurashi! I'm still waiting for my grandchildren to arrive."
Both females burst into laughter. Mrs. Higurashi was happy to see her daughter this lively again. For the first few weeks after her ordeal, Kagome had turned quiet. She barely spoke a word and was often seen crying.
The semester had already begun, so enrolling her in a new school was a bit tedious. Still, they were able to manage. Kagome's birthday had gone by, leaving the girl even more depressed than usual. Mrs. Higurashi felt relieved when Kagome's mood began to improve from there. She began talking more. She even began playing video games with Souta.
Mrs. Higurashi put a hand on Kagome's shoulder, "Kagome, dear, I hope you enjoy yourself over there." The priestess gave her an award-winning smile, "Of course, I will! If Auntie's daughters are just like her, then I shouldn't have any problem at all."
Mrs. Higurashi had a younger twin sister who married a man named Soun Tendo. Apparently, they had three daughters, the youngest being around Kagome's age. Kagome never really met her aunt, but her mother told her that she was a lovely person. Also, she hadn't ever seen her cousins because of the distance. Still, the young priestess was excited to finally be able to meet them.
Souta's voice was heard from the bottom of the stairs, "Onee-chan! Mama! The cab's here!"
"All right, dear. We'll be there in a minute!"
Mrs. Higurashi began to take a few of Kagome's luggage, and stopped midway, "Is this all you're bringing?"
Kagome blinked in confusion, "Yeah, why?"
"Kagome, are you sure you have everything you need? I'm not so sure a backpack and duffel bag are—"
"It's fine, mama. I've learned to pack light ever since…"
Mrs. Higurashi watched her as she trailed off. Deciding not to dampen the mood, the older woman nodded in understanding and proceeded down the stairs to load the bags.
Kagome gave a wistful smile before going around her room one last time, making sure she didn't forget anything. Nodding in satisfaction, Kagome gave herself a last once-over in her mirror. Her shapeless white shirt hid her curves as well as the Shikon around her neck. Her breasts were bound, a habit she had developed in the later days of her shard-hunting. Her black pants were baggy enough to conceal the femininity of her legs, but not enough to look uncool. Black, Chinese shoes adorned her feet. On her head, there was a white cap with her hair in a tight ponytail. Kagome had learned the hard way that wearing a skimpy uniform in the Feudal Era was a bad idea.
Looking at herself, Kagome giggled. She did look like a boy, but there was still a hint of female charm. Her only reason for changing the way she dresses is because she had to continue her training. When the final battle drew near, it was agreed upon that everyone in the group needed more than just the basics of self-defense. Sango was the one who taught and trained Kagome. There were also the occasional sessions with Sesshomaru. Kagome smiled sadly, it was thanks to them that she improved quite a lot. She didn't even have to rely on her bow. Another surprise was that she had a knack for adapting to different fighting styles.
Snapping out of her thoughts, Kagome made her way downstairs and out the door. Sure enough a taxi was ready and waiting. It was time to say goodbye.
"Kagome, dear, are you sure you don't want me to call your uncle and tell him that my daughter is dressed like a boy?" Mrs. Higurashi raised an eyebrow at her. Kagome laughed, "No, mama! I think I'll be playing the role of a boy for now. Don't worry!"
"Dear, are you sure you didn't develop something over the months?"
"I'm fine, I'm fine. I'm just trying to shake things up a bit!" Mrs. Higurashi nodded in defeat before engulfing her daughter in a tight hug, "I will miss you, Kagome."
"I'll miss you, too, mama."
Going over to Souta, Kagome crouched to his level and ruffled his hair affectionately, "Well, Souta, don't get into too much trouble while I'm gone all right? And help take care of Jii-chan and the shrine."
The little boy pouted, "You don't have to tell me that, sis. I've been doing that for a while now." Kagome giggled and stood up. She was a bit surprised when Souta hugged her legs. Patting his head, the boy let go and she moved on and embraced her grandfather, "Jii-chan, you take care of yourself, all right? When you need more ointment for your back, just give me a call."
He hugged her back, trying desperately to keep himself from crying. The last member of the family rubbed her legs. Picking him up, Kagome scratched him behind the ears, "Buyo, you stay out of trouble, too, you hear? Watch over the rest of them while I'm gone." The fat cat yowled an affirmative, nuzzled her before jumping down again.
"Sheesh, sis, you're only going to the other side of Tokyo. It's not like you're leaving the country or something." Kagome gave him a half-hearted glare and messed with his hair again, "Souta, you are such a little sweetheart, aren't you?" she said sarcastically.
The young priestess entered the cab and with a final wave to her family, she was off to Nerima.
Later that day…
Kagome looked at the situation she was in and twitched. Ever since she left the shrine, bad luck seemed to follow her everywhere. First, the taxi had broken down when they were half-way to the Tendo residence. Second, some punk decided to steal her wallet, forcing her to chase him all over the neighborhood. Third, it was raining and she had no umbrella. Rubbing her temples, Kagome chose to complain later. Adjusting her stuff, she continued to walk. She followed the directions her mother had written down on a piece of paper. It was a bit hard to make out the names of the streets since the paper was drenched. Kagome had taken the wrong route two times already.
Not one to give up so easily, Kagome walked on. She was about to round a corner when someone collided with her. The sudden impact caused her to fall down. 'And just when I thought things couldn't get any worse!'Kagome whirled her head to glare at the person who bumped her only to see a red-haired girl in Chinese clothes scratching the back of her head. The priestess let out an annoyed sound before picking up her belongings and standing in front of the girl, "You should watch where you're going! What's wrong, you have two big eyes and you couldn't see me?" she noticed the girl bow her head a bit before muttering an apology.
Kagome heaved a sigh before setting her bags down and crouching in front of the small female. When she didn't get on, Kagome looked over her shoulder, "Get on, I'll take you where you want you to go. It's not healthy to stay out here in the rain." The girl still didn't move and just sent her a puzzled look. Kagome had to stop herself from glaring. Seeing as she wouldn't get on, Kagome swiftly placed the girl on her back, piggy-back style and used one hand to grab her stuff. 'Once again, I would like to point out the benefits of packing light.'
The priestess ignored the shriek of surprise and simply walked, "So, where are you headed?"
"You don't know?"
Kagome stopped in her tracks and turned her head a bit, "China? Isn't that a little far? Are you going alone?"
The red-haired girl opened her mouth to answer but a panda appeared in front of them out of nowhere. Kagome jumped a few ways back, securing her hold on both the girl and her belongings.
"What the-? A panda? In the middle of the street!?"
The priestess studied the animal. It was huge. There was also a backpack slung over its shoulder. It was looking right at her. Kagome raised an eyebrow. This wasn't an ordinary panda. She dodged as it reached out at the girl on her back. Glancing at the girl, she noticed that instead of being scared or confused, she was actually scowling at the animal, "I take it you know him?"
The girl visibly gulped and laughed nervously, "Uh…"
Groaning, Kagome continued to run, the panda following close behind them, 'What is it with today?' Passing a lot of people on the street, the priestess heard whispers and gasps of surprise.
"I-Is that a panda?"
"Why's it chasing that couple?"
"What is the world coming to?"
Spotting a familiar street name, Kagome smirked. At least, the Tendo Dojo was just around the corner. Peering over her shoulder, the miko noticed that the panda was nowhere in sight. Slowing to a skid, Kagome bent over, trying to catch her breath. She was really out of shape.
"Oi, are you all right?" Without thinking, Kagome dropped the strange girl on the pavement.
"Hey! What the hell was that for?"
Kagome put her hands on her hips, a stern look on her face, "That was for me being chased by the panda! You knew him, didn't you? I absolutely have no idea why I even carried you all the way here!"
The girl frowned, and clenched her fist, "No one forced ya, ya know! I didn't ask ya to carry me! 'Sides! It's none of ya're business!"
Kagome scowled at her and raised an eyebrow, "You made it my business when you crashed into me! Was I supposed to leave a girl like you in the streets? And I suppose, I should have just to have thrown you to that crazy panda and been on my merry way, too?"
The red-haired girl opened her mouth but nothing came out. She tried again, still nothing. Kagome crossed her arms and stared at her expectantly. The girl shot to her feet and yelled, "Ah! I give up! Fine! Just do whatever you want!" She started walking away, but her collar was pulled back by Kagome. Losing her footing, the girl fell on the sidewalk again, "Why you! What the hell was that for!?"
Kagome rolled her eyes and pointed at the signboard hanging on the wall. She had reached the Tendo House. Gathering her bags again, Kagome hauled the girl by her collar into the house, "Come on, you'd better change and have something to eat before you set off for China. I can't have a pretty girl like you walk around famished and dirty in the streets."
Kagome missed the blush spreading across the strange girl's cheeks. She stopped and turned to her companion, "Oh, right! My name's Higurashi Kagome. Nice to meet you." The miko held out a hand and smiled.
The crimson tint on the redhead's face didn't disappear, but she took the outstretched hand anyway, "Saotome Ranma…"
"Well, Ranma, wait a bit, I'm just gonna—"
Kagome was cut off when the door of the Tendo House was slid open by the panda from a while ago. The miko stepped back in fright, "Y-You again!?"
Ranma yelped and attempted to run away. Panda-san beat her to the gate and carried her thrashing form inside the house. Kagome frowned, 'What's that panda doing here?' She followed them inside with a quick "Sorry for the intrusion."
She could hear Ranma struggling in the hallway as well as some other voices. There was a man, "Ah, they're here!" and three women by the sound of it.
Kagome walked up behind the panda and pouted. He was huge enough to fill the block the whole hallway. Kagome started to squeeze herself through. She watched as the man studied Ranma before exclaiming, "Ah! I see! You must be my niece, Kagome! Your mother told me you would be arriving soon! But I'm surprised! I thought you inherited your mother's hair color! Was your father a foreigner?"
The miko raised an eyebrow at his words. Finally able to get passed the panda fully, Kagome stumbled into view. She came face to face with a middle-aged man who had long, straight hair, and a moustache. Behind him were three girls. The man's eyes seemed to sparkle as he soon as he saw her,
"Ranma! We've waited so long! This meeting is truly a blessing!" The man came up to Kagome and pulled her in his arms. The miko tried to get away but he was obviously stronger, "W-Wait! Hold on a minute!"
"Otou-san! He can't breathe!" said one of the girls. Realizing so, the man laughed good-naturedly before pulling away, "Ah, sorry about that!"
The girl with the short, brown hair peeked over his shoulders and looked at Kagome with a delighted smile, "Woah, he is handsome!"
The priestess tilted her head, "Eh?"
The man went behind Kagome and pushed her a bit, "Now, now, these are my daughters. You can pick one to be your bride!" Kagome nearly fainted, "W-Wait!"
She felt him still pushing her. Growling in irritation, Kagome shouted, "I. Said. WAIT!"
The man stopped and backed away. Kagome took a deep breath and glowered at the man, "Let's make something clear, uncle. I am Higurashi Kagome." She emphasized her point by placing a hand on her chest. The redhead came beside him and stuttered shyly,
"And… I-I'm S-Saotome Ranma…"
5 Minutes Later…
Everyone sat around the table, the steam from the freshly prepared tea rising from each of their cups. The middle-aged man known as Soun was busy contemplating and crying on the matter. He looked to his side where a timid Ranma was seated next to a calm Kagome. On his other side, his daughters, Kasumi, Nabiki, and Akane were staring at them. The panda was opposite Soun.
"So… you're saying that," He glanced at Ranma, "the supposed fiancé of one of my daughters and the heir of the Anything Goes School of Martial Arts is a female, while," he glanced at Kagome, "the daughter of my late wife's twin sister is a male?" The miko shrugged and sipped her tea. Ranma nodded slightly.
Nabiki sighed and chided her father, "Tou-san! You should've at least checked if Ranma was a boy!"
Soun let the tears fall freely as he leaned over the table dramatically, "Saotome-kun said that he was blessed with a SON!"
Akane had her arms crossed, "Eh… And what about Kagome?"
Her father shook his head violently, "I specifically remember his mother telling me that her DAUGHTER was coming!"
Kasumi put a hand to her face, "Otou-san, are you sure you did not mix them up?"
The man nodded furiously.
"Well? Now what?" asked Nabiki as she propped her head on her hand, "What about the future of the dojo?"
Ranma shifted under the tense atmosphere and all the questions. She was surprised when a hand placed itself on her shoulder, giving him a comforting squeeze. She looked at the hand before her eyes trailed to the owner. Kagome smiled at her encouragingly. Flustered, Ranma cast his gaze downward.
Catching their quick exchange, Soun suddenly got on his feet, "Yosh! There will still be an engagement!"
Everyone looked at him, bewildered by his announcement. Kasumi's brows furrowed, "Otou-san?"
Akane sent her father a doubtful look, "What are planning now, otou-san?"
Soun walked behind Kagome and Ranma, pulled them to his chest, hugging them close, "These two will wed and take over the Tendo Dojo! Kagome is family and doing this will—"
"Hold on! Who said I want to get married!?" Kagome wriggled desperately in his grasp, "You have no right to tell me who to marry!"
Ranma was trying to release herself, as well, "…!"
Breaking free at last, Kagome grunted and fixed her clothes, "I don't want to be part of an engaged arranged marriage, thank you very much! I also don't like forcing other people to marry me! These are just things you don't let other people do for you!"
Ranma watched as the 'boy' spoke freely and clearly. She was impressed by 'his' bravery.
Before anything else could be said, Akane stood up and marched up to her father, "Otou-san, he's right! You have to stop this." Soun looked at his youngest daughter pleadingly, but Akane didn't budge. Instead, the young girl took Ranma's hand, "Ne, want to go see the dojo?" The redhead nodded meekly.
Just when they were about to round a corner, Akane hesitantly turned to her cousin, "Um, y-you can come, too. If you want." Kagome seemed to think about it before beaming up at her and nodding.
I apologize for the errors!
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