A Perpetual Tale

Here's the next chapter, hope you enjoy it! – And yes, the chapter is supposed to be a fraction. Argh... I guess school's really been getting to me now.

By the way, this chapter was supposed to be up a week ago but due to some difficulties - I had to delay.

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Chapter Four

Two Over Four

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Walking towards the trap door and opening it so it could once again make a way down to the floors of the ship, Kagome preached over and climbed down the ladder carefully. So it was said and done, she and Sango were staying aboard the ship for an estimated amount of a month. Slowly moving towards the doors which led to the library, she bit her lip as she felt the ship sway a tad towards the left. Oh god, if this continued, she'd be vomiting out her lunch as soon as she ate it.

Opening the door, forgetting her rocking ship dilemma and forcing on a smile as she saw Sango waiting for her in the library, Kagome ran gracefully towards her. "Hi again." She said and glanced towards the dining room which could be seen through the doors. "I had a talk with the captain."

"And?" Sango asked, pulling Kagome lightly towards the dining room as she felt her stomach grumble.

"...It'll be a month for sure before we get back home." Letting out a miserable sigh, Kagome lowered her voice. "If only there was a way we could tell everyone back home that we were safe."

"There isn't..." Sango lowered her tone as she got closer to the dining room doors. "All we can do is just forget about home for the moment, it'll help for sure," Clearing her throat, she nudged her head towards the handle. "Anyway, I heard we eat with the prince."

"We do – so open the doors..." Kagome trailed off as Sango slowly pulled open the sliding doors, revealing the same dining room they had seen before, except this time, Miroku, Inu-Yasha and Kouga were sitting around it, eating the most magnificent breakfast Kagome had ever seen in her life! Home made bread cut into neat slices, jugs of creamy milk, glasses filled to the top with freshly squeezed orange juice, hot bacon with fried eggs, a plate of sausages and mince rolls, apple pie with cream and to top it off a whole plate of scones with strawberry jam was set in their delight.

"You're finally here, I was about to go up and get you two!" Kouga offered a friendly smile, his right fang showing distinctively as he took a big gulp from his goblet. "Come sit!"

Smiling back, Kagome decided to take a seat beside him, watching Sango as she wearily sat beside Miroku and tried to ignore the broad smile on his face. "So, why don't we break the ice between us?" he said and looked towards both Sango and Kagome, swallowing his food in an attempt to talk.

"Yeah, if we're going to be spending a whole month or so with each other, let's get to know each other!" Kouga added on, ignoring Inu-Yasha as he shook his head.

"Alright then..." Kagome offered a small smile and almost jumped out of her skin as the jug of milk picked itself up and poured milk into her goblet. Shaking off the surprise, she remembered she was in the company of two demons and a man which looked like a monk so that there was bound to be some serious magic onboard. "We both are... uh, sisters," she stopped to take a gulp as she noticed Inu-Yasha leave his food to cross his arms over his chest to simply stare at the two females.

"She's Kagome, and I'm Sango!" Sango picked up as she saw Kagome didn't like the attention focused on her one bit at all. "And uh... I don't know... what else?"

Miroku let out a snicker. "Well, to make official introductions, I'm Miroku, that there is Kouga and the guy eating beside me, who hasn't said a word so far is Inu-Yasha... the prince though we both are his good friends, and cousins."

"Nice... uh, to meet you all." Sango said cheerily and looked down at her plate as Miroku forced upon some sausages and bacon onto it, the smell making her stomach grumble in hunger.

"Mhm." Kagome murmured out between stuffing the bread in her mouth as she drank the creamy milk. Finally swallowing the bread, Kagome wiped her mouth. "It'll be fun!"

Inu-Yasha scoffed, taking a bite from an apple pie slice. "Just don't go sneaking around where you don't belong." He said scruffily and took a sip from his orange juice.

Raising an eyebrow, Kagome glanced at him for a mere second before sweeping her eyes around the room, deciding not to reply to his command. "Anyway... isn't there a third and fourth floor to the ship?" she asked as she remembered the windows on the bottom of the ship she had spotted from outside.

Maybe it was just her, but she could've sworn the boys, especially Inu-Yasha had tensed as she had said that. And just before they had answered, Kagome wearily noticed how they glanced at each other before Kouga answered.

"I... don't recall there being another floor," He said, not looking at her as he replied. "Why?"

Sango kicked Kagome under the chair, signaling her that she knew they were hiding something and as she received a kick back, she quickly swallowed the milk she was drinking before she replied. "Oh, well – we saw a window on the bottom of the ship -."

"You must've been seeing things in the heat." Miroku said firmly, his tone of voice sending off warning bells though Kagome let it roll of her back.

"No – it was pretty cool this morning, it was there for sure." Looking at Sango for a mere second, Kagome stated her point clearly and was about to continue when Inu-Yasha spoke up, for the second time that morning.

"Well then, you must've been seeing things in the dark." He snapped and sent a glare towards her, ending his sentence with a growl.

Kagome shifted uneasily as the table fell into silence, knowing she had somehow hit a touchy subject. As the matter had been settled, the table fell in silence, though the silence was repeatedly broken as Miroku started to crack jokes that were in no place funny, thought it had the table laughing just for the good of it.

It took them a good twenty minutes to finish their breakfast as in the end; everyone had started talking again, this time Sango and Kagome joined, now being a tad more comfortable with each other.

Just when everyone had gotten up from their chairs, Miroku stretching his arms and Inu-Yasha cracking his knuckles, Kagome motioned Sango to meet her up on the deck receiving a nod in reply.

"We both are going up to the deck," Sending a smile to the three guys as she pulled Sango out of the room, she caught Inu-Yasha's eye for a second before closing the dining room door.

Leading Sango out of the library and through the corridor, Kagome swiveled around to meet Sango just as soon as they reached the ladder. "What the hell was all that about?!"

"I swear I wasn't flirting with Miroku!" Spitting it out in self-defense, Sango raised her hands in warning.

Kagome raised an eyebrow, her eyes flooding with confusion. "I wasn't even talking about that, but thanks for pointing it out." She said, giving her an icy smile. "Anyway, I was talking about how they totally lied about there being a third and fourth floor to the ship!"

Sango raised a hand to her lips at once. "Are you crazy? Don't say it so loudly, climb up the ladder at least, we'll talk about it up on the deck."

Nodding, Kagome turned around and climbed up the ladder step by step, pushing open the trap door as she reached it. Crawling onto the wooden deck, she stood up and put a hand to her head as her hair flew around at once, a chill going down her spine at the sudden wind. "Wow, it's even sunnier now than it was before."

"Never mind that, come here..." Sango grabbed a hold of Kagome's hand and pulled her to the end of the shop, both of them taking a seat on the small ledge right at the edge of the ship, allowing Kagome to look down at the rushing water. "Hey, don't lean over so much, you might fall off!"

Kagome pulled back immediately, emitting a laugh from Sango for her sudden awareness. "All right, why'd you pull me to the end of the ship?" She asked and looked to see Inu-Yasha and Kouga pull themselves up from the trap door, both of them laughing as Miroku made some sort of comment from below.

"Because the winds going this way, both Kouga and Inu-Yasha have keen ears, they won't be able to hear us because the wind will be dragging our voices to the other direction." Sango explained clearly, pulling up her feet to the ledge to get a better seating position. "So about what they said..."

"There is a third and fourth floor, I'm sure of it!" Kagome practically yelled out, receiving a punch from Sango as Kouga glanced their way as he heard her yell.

"You idiot!" Sango steamed out as she slapped her forehead, looking at Kouga momentarily to see if he had overheard what Kagome had said. She let out a deep breath as he saw him shrug his shoulders and continue on with the game the three had started to play. "Thank god he didn't hear!"

Kagome frowned. "Back to the topic... why would they hide two whole floors?"

Sango raised her hand to settle a strand of hair behind her ear. "Maybe they want to hide something valuable? I mean, I'm sure there are two more floors they've hidden passage to, because it was so obvious they were lying when they denied it."

Nodding, Kagome took a breath of the fresh air with the scent of sea salt before talking. "Valuable? But why would they hide something valuable? They're made of money, and everything they do completely brags about it so what would be the point of hiding something valuable?" Kagome spat out, making her words seem harsher than she had intended to, though nevertheless she pondered over the fact. It was true, the food they ate, the homes they lived in, the clothes they wore – it was all high class, so if they had a priceless artifact, why not just add it to their gallery?

Sango sighed. "Well, maybe it's not that kind of valuable, some sort of -."

"Hey, what're you both talking so intently about!?" Miroku's voice called out to them, snapping them both out of the conversation immediately.

"Nothing important!" Kagome yelled back boldly, putting on one of her fake though charming smiles, making her seem innocent, throwing them off track completely.

"Well, you wanna' come hang out with us?!" He yelled back from the middle of the ship, where he was hanging from one of the casts, the game the three were playing seeming to have finished off.

"Uh, sure..." Sango said, sliding off from the ledge and waiting for Kagome to jump off as well. Just as soon as she did, they both headed towards the other side of the deck, Sango stopping beside Miroku who jumped down from the cast to stop and talk with her. However, Kagome ran straight towards the steering wheel where the captain was telling Inu-Yasha how to handle the steering wheel.

"Oh can I try?" Kagome said suddenly, drawing both of their attention to her at once.

"Sure, just you make sure you don't turn it either left or right, straightforward only - thank you my lady!" The captain said, "I'll be right back." Bowing once again before running across to another trap door on the deck and disappearing down it at once.

Walking up to the wheel, she slowly took hold of it firmly and squealed as she felt full control of the ship.

"Jeez, you make it sound like such a big deal." Inu-Yasha's voice came from behind her. Turning her head to look, Kagome pouted and turned away – not wanting to bother with an attitude like his at the moment.

Sensing the ignorance coming from her side, he crossed his arms across his chest knowing exactly what to do to break the silence. "You have far too much dignity to be a princess."

Kagome growled almost at once, forgetting about the wheel immediately. "Oh god... why in the world wont you drop saying that?!" Turning around she quickly grabbed his left ear and pulled him down. "And by the way, you're much too rude to be a prince!"

He winced immediately, yelping as she grabbed harder, pulling him along the boat to the ledge on the other side of the deck.

If he wasn't so numb from the pain she was creating by the furious pull on his ear, he would've reacted but he was numb thus at her mercy. "Ah, don't pull so damn hard!" He yelled out, trying to pull her hand away.

"I'd let go only if you apologize!" Snapping at him, Kagome pushed him on the ledge, finally letting go of his ear, his hand going immediately towards it to comfort it.

"You wish!" He said, his words coming out in a growl. He was about to jump off when he felt himself being tug forward as she grabbed a hold of his fang and black bead magic chain around his neck. "Hey, be careful with that!"

"Are you going to apologize to me or not!?" Drawing out her words slowly, she glared at him, making sure he knew she wasn't kidding around.

"No way in hell, woman." He replied, and gulped when he saw her eyes close to slits.

"Can you swim?"

"Yeah, why?" He asked, his eyebrows shuffling in confusion, though he didn't have time to think as he was pushed backwards, falling headfirst in the water below.

"SCORE!"

Kagome turned around, seeing Kouga grinning madly, accompanied with Miroku who was scribbling furiously on parchment.

"That's... one for Kagome, zero for Inu-Yasha." He said, putting down the inked feather he was writing with and then gave the parchment to Kouga to put in one of his pockets. Rolling her eyes, Kagome shook her head and then leaned over to make sure he wasn't bluffing when he said he could swim. Luckily, there he was, scowling madly as he swam furiously to catch up with the ship.

Smiling proudly for her achievement, not caring she had just thrown the prince of her own country off a ship into the cold rushing waves beneath them she walked to the side of the ship to help Miroku and Kouga throw down a ladder to haul him back up.

Just as soon as he had climbed up halfway up the ladder, he growled furiously. "I'll get you for that!"

Widening her eyes in realization, Kagome screamed as Inu-Yasha jumped aboard the ship and ran for her, only giving her a split second to turn around and run. Squealing as she felt him grab her by the wrist and pull her back, she gasped as he shook his body from head to toe, spraying all the water that was soaked onto his body, right onto her.

As he stopped, Kagome stood there horrified. "Aw crap!"

She was dripping. Her clothes clamped to her skin and her hair plastered to her face. "How the hell did you just do that?"

"I'm a demon remember?" He snapped back, obviously in a bad mood for being thrown off board. "God, didn't anyone teach you to respect elders?"

Kagome almost laughed. "Jeez, didn't anyone tell you to behave?!"

"What in the wor'ld?! Who left the wheel?!"

Both Kagome and Inu-Yasha turned towards the upper part of the deck where the captain stood standing with his hand raised to his forehead.

Realizing at once what she had done, Kagome mentally cursed her self. "Oh, I'm sorry!"

"Arr, this is 'bad I tell ya'!" He said and grabbed the wheel, pulling it to a stop as it turned around madly. Pulling the wooden lever to stop the wheel from making anymore turns than it had already done, he shook his had with frustration. "If ya' had ta' go play in the water', you could've set the ship on auto!" He yelled out, shaking his head as he slapped a hand on his forehead.

Kagome frowned. "But, I only left it for a few minutes, what could possibly happen?"

"Arr, many things my lady! We've probably changed course of the ship!" He shook his head once again and groaned, peering at the sky between the gaps of his fingers.

"Then let's turn back!" Miroku said, as if the captain were stupid.

"I wish!" As he took his hands off his face, he turned his head towards the direction the ship was sailing. "I lad, can only see the northern star at night, so we can't see if we're goin' the right way right now and by the time night arrives, it might be too late."

"What do you mean by that?" Sango asked, walking a few steps to stand beside the drenched Kagome.

"What' if we're to run into some sort of haunted waters?" He stated with a small pout. "It can happen ya' know!"

"Oh come on! You're letting your imagination run wild – we'll be fine, and that's settled." Kouga raised his hands to settle the argument, not caring that what he said sounded completely moronic. "Okay, so Kagome... let's get you dry." Walking towards her, he changed the topic completely, leaving the horrified captain to himself.

Kagome nodded and was about to follow Kouga when Inu-Yasha sighed. "This is your entire fault."

Kagome froze, feeling annoyance build up in her stomach again. "Well, you were the one who distracted me!" she drawled out and flinched when Miroku yelled out, almost screeching.

"That's two for Kagome, zero for Inu-Yasha!" he drawled out jokingly, smirking as he saw Inu-Yasha's livid face.

"Stuff it Miroku." He spat out in return, noticing as Kagome shivered in the cold, sighing, he rolled his eyes. "If you don't get changed right now, then don't come running to me when you get a high fever and drippy nose."

Glaring at Inu-Yasha for the comment, she headed towards the trap door. "Thanks for your concern." Saying it back icily, Kagome didn't have time to hear his reply as she dropped down on the corridor beneath the trap door.

Pulling back her wet hair and tying it in a pony tail, she followed Kouga into his room, almost jumping out of her skin when she saw a large sword placed ruthlessly on the table beside his bed. "Whoa, why in the world do you have such a humungous sword?"

Kouga glanced over to what Kagome was pointing at from the wardrobe he was searching through. "It's not mine, it's Inu-Yasha's, I was just scathing it for him, it was a little rough around the edges – anyway, here, think fast!"

Before Kagome could even see what he had thrown at her, she stumbled forward to catch it clumsily, only ending up to letting out a scream as a large puff of orange smoke surrounded her. Closing her eyes immediately, she raised her hands in self defense and waited for the worst.

Nothing happened.

That was strange... Opening an eye to see what had happened, she frowned as she saw the smoke had vanished just as soon as it had come. "What the... what- what just happened?"

"You can see for yourself." Kouga replied, laughing jokingly as he witnessed her reaction.

Looking down at herself, Kagome raised her eyebrows at what she saw. "I'm completely dry!"

"Yep."

"How'd you do that?" Feeling her hair, Kagome widened her eyes astoundingly as she felt that they were completely dry even though they had been completely wet just a second ago.

"Magic, no duh." Shaking his head with a small laugh, he was about to say something when Miroku called his name. Turning to Kagome, he sighed. "Hold on, I'll be right back..." Running out the door, he left Kagome in the room without another word.

'Hmmm.' Looking around the room, Kagome walked around it slowly, taking in the sight. "Wonder what I can do while he comes back..." Turning her head to glance out the door, Kagome raised her eyebrows as she realized Inu-Yasha's room was right beside Kouga's.

Slowly and rather quietly walking across the room, Kagome peeked her head out of the door to check if anyone was in the corridor. Making sure Inu-Yasha wasn't in his room but upstairs (which was proved by the amount of yelling), Kagome opened his doorknob slowly, sneaking another glance in his room.

Frowning once again, she shuffled her eyebrows in confusion.

Something was different...

Widening her eyes as she saw a trapdoor at the complete centre of the room, she was about to step in when she heard Kouga's voices coming closer to the deck's trapdoor. Shutting close the door immediately and running back into his room, Kagome straightened her posture as Kouga stepped in.

"We're seeing some sort of ancient structure far, far off in the distance, and we'll be crossing it at nightfall – so that's why they called me." He stated simply as if it were no big deal.

"But... why would -." Kagome started off but was cut midway through.

"We weren't supposed to run across any ancient buildings of any sort, it's probably happening because of the change of course... but we'll get back on track so don't worry about it." He said, shrugging. "Alright – back to before, I was about to tell you-."

"Actually, tell me some other time? I've just got to go look up something in the library." Giving him a small smile, Kagome walked out of the room, heading towards the library at once.

x.x

The day passed by slowly. Lunch was served and eaten, the same went with dinner. Apart from that, no one really did anything. Kagome spent her time in the library, now getting used to the un-familiar rocking of the ship while Sango spent most of her time up on the deck, just loving the fresh air, and was now enjoying stargazing as night had proceeded to overtake the day.

And for the three boys, they were either messing around the library, pushing each other to the railings on the deck or slamming themselves shut in their rooms to see who could bang their door the loudest.

There had been quite a fuss with the captain as he took out the telescopes and adjusted them so he could spot the Northern Star, which had been found and jotted down so they wouldn't lose course again.

Yawning as she turned the page of the book, Kagome rubbed her eyes and proceeded to read the several books she had taken out of the tall and wide bookshelves. So far, she had found nothing about Prince Inu-Yasha Taisho which could somehow relate to what they were hiding beneath the trap door in Inu-Yasha's room, which she was now completely sure led to the third floor.

"They probably discarded all the books which had content about him anyway." She murmured to herself and threw the book she was reading away. Stretching her arms as she got off the couch, she looked up at the bookshelf again, "Might as well try again..."

Climbing the ladder which led to the higher books on the shelf, she was midway up when she felt the ship lurch horribly backwards. Biting her lip as she fell off the ladder to land painfully on her side, Kagome groaned as tons of books fell on top of her.

Just as soon as the ship had tilted, it tilted back to its normal tilt, thought what had happened was enough to alarm the passengers.

x.x

I'm just opening up more strings so I can tie up some other ones and still continue on with the plot... don't worry, I haven't forgotten about the candles just yet, you can expect to see them pop up once again in the next chapter!

When will I update? I have no clue... but reviews always motivate me so click that purple button on the bottom left side of the screen and tell me what you thought about it!