He lives!

Yeah, Yeah. I know it's been a long time. Bite me. Let us give thanks.

From MM: Megan Consoer; I'm glad you like my story. I don't know what the pairing will be for Sess or if he'll even have one, but I'm pretty sure it's not gonna be Kagome. Inu-Shinta; I'm glad I could surprise you with that direction. I could see her lying to her mom in that way, so I went with it. Now onto FF: thatadude; I see I have successfully made another conversion to the dark side that is known as the Inu/San pairing. Brookie; welcome to my world of Kagome hating on a new level. HeWhoWalksTheEarth; there are things far worse than death, so we shall see what ultimate fate befalls the traitors. WhoTheFuckIsTreCool90; glad you liked it, here's another one for ya. SnowFox13; glad you liked it. Don't worry, Sango gets over her tears in this one. Silverhaired Nemesis; don't worry, Kagome will get what's hers. Peacemaker; if you liked chapter 8, then you're gonna like this one I think. Nellafire; glad you liked it. Christian; your insanity is welcome and encouraged here. Crimsontears824; here ya go. Twistedtiger; glad you're enjoying it so far, keep reading. DietSoap; you blushed? I didn't know throwing pots and knives could do that, good to know. KatonKageNaruto; I have updated. Sephiroth-souleater; best inu/san ever? I'm not sure about that but thanks. I don't know what will happen with the family, we shall see. Loyal leader; glad you liked the Sess and Shippou time. Oakrock; who are the tar and feathers for? Steve; maybe if you start drawing again, your ability will come back. I hope so cause I'd love to show off some of the images in my mind. Grievous Shakar; ummm, I try not to talk to robots too often, bad experience with my Furby. I'm glad that you like the off pairings as much as I do, especially when the person the lead is supposed to be with is a whiny bitch. I am inspired, but don't have time so I update when I can. Enjoy robot dude. Ja'Un, aku, demonofthedarkness; you all said the same thing in a row so: glad you all like it and here's the update. Xxxroxyxxx; ah, another convert to the inu/san pairing. I love corrupting the innocent. Obliviandragon; glad you enjoyed it, here's the next one. Soul Stealer; don't worry, it will be the end when a huge END appears at the end of the chapter, so this isn't close yet. Torrent88; you've read it 100 times? Awesome. Tsuna Dragon; the brothers shall rule the world. Until I'm born and take over that is. The 1st Galactic Guardian; hope you like this one. Inuyasha-backlashwave; that wasn't the end, why would I need a sequel? The Halfa Wannabe; I've read some of your stuff before, right on with returning the favor. Stalicon; sorry for putting this off, school came first. It's my last year at Georgia Tech so I gotta do good. Madinuyasha/narutofan; here's the update. Whocares666; I know it's taking forever, be patient and you may receive 2 or even 3 updates over Christmas break. KingofFoxes; here's the update. Fanggirl002; your wait is over, here's the next chapter. Sarah; sorry it took so long. BrokenReflections2201; it's okay if you've reviewed already, do it again. I like hearing from loyal minions. KawaiiYoukai9517; the puppy dog eyes don't work on me, however I did update for you. (Anonymous reviewer); I couldn't tell what symbol you used to review, but I kept writing so here it is.

Done with that, now onto the rest of it.

"Talking"

'Thinking'

Disclaimer: I'm not dead yet, so I can't tell if Hell is frozen but I'd suspect it hasn't since I still don't own Inuyasha.

Chapter 9

The sun began to peek over the mountains in the distance from the small village. Slowly, the warming rays began to descend upon the sleeping huts. The village was peaceful for the first time in months. A fierce lizard demon, empowered from a jewel shard, had been terrorizing the poor villagers until a passing band of warriors happened upon them. They lured the demon away from the village before beginning to slay it. The group worked together like they were able to read the thoughts of one another, with only a few small mistakes. The final blow was struck from a powerful energy attack unleashed from a sword. The town revered the newcomers as heroes for their work and praised the silver-haired man for his final battle-ending attack.

Inuyasha was still not quite awake. The hut the villagers had loaned to them for the night was cozy, and his exhaustion from worrying about the woman in his arms had taken its toll on him. During the battle yesterday the lizard demon had managed to use its tail to flick the Hiraikotsu back at Sango. She'd taken the full brunt of the attack. Luckily she'd managed to jump out of the way just enough so she was only mildly bruised. Of course, Inuyasha had been acting like his normal self and worried so much that Sango had to threaten to beat him into a crater with the very weapon that started the entire argument. It was in this currently dazed state between waking and sleep that he currently found himself. It was then he noticed something a bit out of odds. His ears were being petted. He hated that more than he hated the wolf, the priestess, and the monk combined; but less than he hated Naraku. He hated it because people were always so rough on them, and they were sensitive as Hell. He then began to realize that the touches were very gentle and light. Inuyasha felt a slight movement in his arms and figured it must be Sango who was doing it. He figured he could allow her to pet his ears. He involuntarily twitched them, and heard two gasps followed by giggles; little girl giggles to be precise. This realization sobered him up quickly. He then realized that Sango was snuggled up into his chest with her hands between their bodies and her face nuzzling his neck. The hands on his ears were small and child-like. Inuyasha snapped his eyes open and startled Shiori and Shina who squeaked in surprise and jumped back.

"Is there a reason I'm being molested in my sleep?" he questioned.

The girls both turned crimson at his choice of words. Shina spoke first. "You let Sango touch them while you're asleep, why can't we?"

Shiori looked over to her "sister" and gawked. "Shina! Don't say that!"

Inuyasha's intense glare never wavered. "Sango is different."

"No she's not, we're girls just like her," objected Shina.

Inuyasha had to fight down the snort at that comment. "Not quite."

"What makes her different then?"

Inuyasha suddenly had what he'd heard termed the "dear-in-headlights-look" on his face now. 'God, why must you keep screwing with me?'

Thankfully, Shiori figured out the difference on her own. "She's his intended mate, we're like little sisters. We have to ask permission," she stated with a downcast face.

Shina then realized the folly of her ways and bowed her head. "Sorry, Inuyasha. We just wanted to know what they felt like."

Inuyasha smiled back at the girls. "It's alright. Maybe some other time if you actually ask you can pet them. Don't expect to get to pet me whenever you want though. Now why don't you go out and see if the village kids wanted to play or if anyone needs our help."

"Okay," both the girls chirped as they got up and left outside followed by Kirara.

Inuyasha sighed and went to rest his head against the wall of the hut again. An angelic voice startled him awake again though.

"So how am I different again?"

Inuyasha turned his gaze down to the woman in his arms. She had a smirk on her face and a sparkle to her eyes. "How long have you been up?"

Sango's smirk turned into a full blown smile. "For a little bit. I was enjoying the purring sound you make while they were petting your ears."

Inuyasha narrowed his eyes and scowled. "I don't purr. Kirara purrs."

Sango rolled her eyes. "Fine then. I was enjoying the very low growl that was coming from your chest." She then snuggled back into his chest. "Inuyasha?"

"Hmmm?"

Sango seemed to fidget in his lap. To Inuyasha, it looked like she was searching for the right words. "Are you truly serious about making me your mate?"

Inuyasha gently put a claw under her chin to force her to look him in the eyes. "With all my being."

Sango's eyes began to water. "But I'm not pretty and I'm covered in scars."

This comment earned her a dark glare and a growl. "Never say that about yourself. You're the most beautiful woman I could ever imagine. Your scars show your strength and ability to fight for your pack." He gently placed a kiss on her lips. "If anything, you're more beautiful than anyone like me ever deserves."

Like her previous statement, that one earned him a glare and her own human growl. "If you're gonna be my mate then no one, especially you, will ever say anything bad to you ever again."

The ferociousness in her eyes told him that she'd made that pledge from the very depth of her soul. Deciding it was time to change the subject, Inuyasha thought he'd try to make her blush. "So, how many pups do you want?"

A look of shock crossed Sango's face and then she blushed cutely. "That depends."

That answer wasn't exactly what he'd hoped for. "Depends on what?"

"Are they all gonna have your cute ears?" she asked while reaching up to tweak one of the appendages.

He chuckled at that. "Yes, but hair and eye color may be a combination of the two of us or just me."

Sango now wore a grin that Inuyasha could only assume had been learned from the monk. She shifted around into his lap and adjusted her skirt, much to the enjoyment and dismay of the half-demon, until she was straddling his legs. "Then I'll make sure to give you a huge litter of puppy-eared children." She affirmed her statement with a soul-searing kiss.

Inuyasha returned the kiss with just as much passion. Their tongues began to intertwine with each other as they struggled to pull each other tighter in their embrace. Sango's arms went from around his neck to stroking and petting his ears. This action made him begin to purr again. The deep rumbling vibrated through their bodies and only amplified their want for one another. Inuyasha's left hand went up her back to rest at her neck as he pulled her tight to his body; his right hand fell down to stroke her thigh and butt. Sango began to grind into Inuyasha and moan into his mouth. Inuyasha could smell just how aroused she was; he was completely drowning in it and found to be more intoxicated by her spicy aroma than anything he'd ever experienced before. Sango could feel his arousal as she pressed herself harder into his lap. They were both lost in each other, enjoying all that their partner offered them. It was not to last though.

"Inuyasha!"

The two lovers broke away from each other and hurriedly fixed themselves. Sango went to the corner to check on her weapons to hide her blush. Inuyasha found himself very thankful for having baggy pants.

The girls then rushed into the hut panting.

"What's wrong?" questioned Inuyasha.

"We saw Kagura flying overhead near the outskirts of the city," replied Shiori.

"What!" Sango practically yelled.

"It's true, but she didn't look like she was doing anything except flying."

Inuyasha seemed to be in deep thought. "I'm gonna go find her, you all stay here."

"Like Hell we're gonna stay here!" yelled Sango.

"Trust me, Sango; she's not looking for a fight. I've seen her with that look a few times when I went off at nights before. She's just out clearing her head and avoiding Naraku. I think we might have found a spy for our side."

The look of fear and worry in Sango's eyes hurt Inuyasha's very soul. It was mirrored in the young girls who stood by her as well. Sango reluctantly agreed though. "Okay, Inuyasha. Please be careful though." Sango gave him a good luck kiss and watched as he jumped into the forest in the direction Kagura had been seen.

Shina then looked over to Sango. "We're gonna follow him aren't we?"

"You bet we are," replied Sango.

"If he catches us, we're gonna be in trouble," stated Shiori.

"Then we can't get caught," chimed Shina.

The girls called Kirara, who transformed, and they took off on Inuyasha's trail.

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Kagura was flying on her feather high above the forest. Naraku was currently reforming his body, yet again. The sight and smell of such an action always nauseated the wind witch so she made sure to be out of the lair for those few days. She used this time just to think. The thoughts she had were always about her freedom and how she could obtain it for herself and Kanna. Being lost in her thoughts, Kagura never noticed the red and black clad figure bouncing towards her.

Inuyasha spotted Kagura. 'What's the best way to get her attention?' He saw a large rock and a smirk crossed his face. He picked up the rock and tossed it in his hand a few times as he watched Kagura flying overhead. He pulled his arm back and took careful aim, then hurled it with all his might straight at her.

Kagura was suddenly and violently brought out of her deep thoughts when something struck her feather and knocked her off. As she fell towards the ground she realized she was gonna be severely hurt. She closed her eyes tight and grit her teeth in preparation for the impact, but it never came. She slowly began to realize she was being held by a pair of very strong arms. She opened her eyes to see a strange demon that had somehow managed to catch her.

"So you decided to just drop in, huh?" the demon questioned.

'I know that voice,' thought Kagura. "Inuyasha?"

"You were expecting some other dog half-demon?"

"B-bu-but . . . wh-what . . ."

Inuyasha laughed as he let the wind witch down on her feet. "I know how you go flying around once a month, I assume the time when Naraku is reforming his body. You just clearing your head?"

Kagura nodded. "I think about somehow earning my freedom. I'm just not strong enough."

"Maybe you just need some help," stated Inuyasha. "I'm willing to help you gain your freedom, for a price."

Kagura had a shocked look on her face. Her cheeks began to burn with anger and she turned to glare at him. "Get this through your half-breed head. I'll never sell my body for my freedom."

Inuyasha narrowed her eyes. "What in the Hell are you babbling about?"

Kagura narrowed her eyes and gazed into Inuyasha's eyes. "You want me to sleep with you so you'll help me."

Inuyasha took a jerking step backwards and wore a look of shock. "When the fuck did I say that!"

Kagura was confused now. "You said you'd help me at a price."

"Yeah, meaning you have to give me information on Naraku. I don't want to sleep with you!"

Kagura bowed her head. "What you're saying is I'm too tainted to be with."

"No, what I'm saying is that you're not a whore and I won't treat you as one. You're a slave and in need of being freed."

A ghost of a smile crossed Kagura's face. "What would you like to know?"

"Well, I guess we should start with how exactly you and Kanna are his prisoners."

Kagura nodded and sighed. "He keeps my heart and Kanna's soul in a pair of jars. The jars are on his mantle in his main room at the castle." She sat down on a large rock nearby.

"Why don't you just sneak in when he's reforming his body and take them?"

She shook her head. "There is a barrier protecting them."

This peaked Inuyasha's interest a bit more. "Tell me about the barrier. Any detail you can think of."

Kagura glanced up and saw the determination in his eyes; there was hope yet. "It's just like all of his barriers. It sits about a foot off of the jars. Nothing really special other than nothing can break them." The last was said with a down-turned face.

Inuyasha smirked. "Nothing except my red Tetsusaiga."

"The idea is to free us, not destroy the jars and kill us," she scowled.

Inuyasha growled at her. "I'm not gonna unleash the Wind Scar, wench. I'm gonna use the blade and slice through the barrier. Then I'll be able to steal the jars and free you."

Kagura sneered at him. "That's provided you can sneak into the castle without Naraku getting a hold of you first."

Inuyasha just smirked and crossed his arms over his chest. "That's why I plan to sneak in when he's gone off for the 'Final Battle' with the other group. You'll tell me when, and I'll get the jars to free you two."

Kagura was speechless. 'He's actually planned this out carefully.'

"I do have a question though. Once I've grabbed the jars, will you automatically know that I have them?"

Kagura nodded. "We'll know immediately after you've broken the barrier and as soon as you grab them you'll become our new . . . . master." The last word was said in total disgust.

Inuyasha's smirk turned into a frown. "No. You will have a savior, but never a master. I will see to it that you shall be free. Once the jars are in my hand, consider that to be the sign of your freedom."

Kagura then smiled every so slightly. "So during this fight, while I'm still under the control of that bastard, how much damage am I allowed to cause?"

Inuyasha chuckled. "No killing of anyone, permanent disability is frowned upon as well." He then leveled an intense glare upon the demoness. "You are not to harm Shippou at all, he is my son and failure to keep him safe will result in me crushing your jar with my bare hands. In fact, I'll crush Kanna's first and then yours. Understood?"

To say that Kagura was intimidated by the look in his eyes would have been an understatement. She was positively certain that if anything happened to the small fox child that he would indeed snuff out their lives without a moments notice. Unable to find her voice under the intense gaze she mutely nodded her agreement.

Once she agreed, Inuyasha let up in his glare. "Good. So . . . . . you planning on telling Naraku about me?"

Kagura snorted. "I'm sure that would go over really big. Why aren't you with the other group anyways?"

"That's a story you need not know. They still hunt the jewel shards, so they are the ones Naraku will be after. We simply wander around and slay demons that harm villages. We are growing stronger than Naraku, even if he has all those jewel shards. Soon we'll put an end to him."

"If I had my heart, I'd cry."

Inuyasha took a step back with a look of terror on his face. "What did I do!"

Kagura again wore a small smile. "Tears of joy, you idiot."

"I don't think it's a good idea to call the guy who's gonna get you your freedom an idiot," he retorted.

The wind witch chuckled. "You're right." There was a lull in conversation while Kagura thought about her next course of action. "Inuyasha, I want to thank you in advance for offering to do this."

Inuyasha closed his eyes and waved her off. "Whatever. No one deserves to serve a bastard like th-."

Inuyasha never finished his statement as he found himself being hugged. 'Damn, what is with women and hugging on me or petting me? Between the girls, Sango, and now Kagura you'd think I was some kind of cute and adorable puppy.' Inuyasha, not knowing what else to do, reluctantly wrapped his arms around Kagura to return the embrace. It just happened to be at this time that Inuyasha's bad luck showed up again.

"Ahem!" came a voice from behind his back.

Kagura and Inuyasha quickly separated and looked for the owner of the voice. Upon locating the speaker the two both had different reactions; Kagura first paled and then blushed while Inuyasha just paled and plastered his ears to his head.

'I'm a dead man,' thought Inuyasha.

Standing there, were three females, four if you counted the cat. It didn't take a genius to figure out they weren't happy to find the two in such a compromising position.

As Sango began stalking towards Inuyasha, he pulled out his only chance of keeping his head; begging.

"Sango, it's not what it looks like. Well, I mean if it looked like I was hugging her then I guess it did. That's not the point though I wasn't doing anything. She hugged me first. I couldn't just not return it. She was upset and you know I can't stand it when a woman is upset. I . . . she . . . oh shit."

No one saw the move. It just looked like Sango was standing there with her Hiraikotsu slung over her back. The next thing anyone knew, Inuyasha was face-planted into the ground with a huge bump on his head courtesy of Sango's weapon.

'Note to self; learn to beg better,' Inuyasha grumbled in his mind.

Sango turned to glare at Kagura.

The wind witch took a step back and raised her hands in defense. "He was telling the truth. I hugged him to thank him for offering to free me from Naraku and he returned it. That's all."

Sango narrowed her eyes. "Explain the whole story from the beginning. Make it fast too."

While Kagura gave the demon slayer a recap of the discussion between herself and Inuyasha, the poor half-demon found himself being tortured. Kirara, in her large form, sat down on his back to keep him on the ground. She was then joined by Shiori and Shina who then took advantaged of the defenseless body beneath them and began to play with his ears. They made sure to be careful to avoid the large bump that was forming on his head.

Once the story was finished, it was Sango's turn to turn pale and then blush. 'Great, I just gave my future mate a concussion because I jumped to a wrong conclusion and got jealous.' She walked over to the downed half-demon and shooed the girls away. "Inuyasha, I'm sorry. You okay?"

Inuyasha lifted his head. Due to the blow and the petting of his ears he was currently about half asleep. The most logical thing that came out of his mouth was, "Huh?"

"Are you okay?" she asked again.

"Yeah, I think. Glad I'm on your side."

"As much as I enjoy watching two lovers fawn over each other I need to be going," Kagura stated. "I'll come track you down the next time Naraku is regenerating so we can plot more." With that said she removed a feather from her hair and tossed it up. Kagura flew away leaving the group behind.

The group watched her fly off in silence before Sango broke it first. "That is a very noble thing to do, Inuyasha," Sango beamed.

"Helluva way to reward me though, Sango," Inuyasha retorted while rubbing his head.

Sango smirked and put her hands on the side of his head. "How's this then?" She then brought him down for a deep kiss.

"Eeewwww," the girls squealed from behind them.

The two adults separated and laughed.

"C'mon everyone, let's get back to the village and get our things." As they started to walk back, Inuyasha stopped. His brow furrowed in concentration as he looked around and began to sniff the air.

"What is it?" questioned Sango with concern.

Inuyasha shook his head. "I don't know. I just got this terrible feeling that someone close to me is in trouble. There's nothing around here that poses a threat though."

"Could it be Lord Sesshomaru?" asked Shina.

Again Inuyasha shook his head. "I don't think he could get into trouble that he couldn't handle."

"How about Shippou?" came Shiori's question.

Inuyasha's eyes widened. He then tapped into his instincts and sniffed the air again hoping to get a lock on his son's position. "I've gotta go help him. You'll only slow me down so go back to the village and wait for my return." Inuyasha then ran off at full speed, transforming as he went to get more speed, and ran as hard as his legs could carry him.

The remaining members of the group stood there with worry written all over their faces and dread in their hearts as they hoped and prayed that Inuyasha would make it in time to help Shippou.

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Shippou was sitting in a tree over the small encampment of his group. He was keeping watch while they cooked dinner. There was a definite presence in the area. The only problem was that he couldn't pinpoint its exact location. 'Damn. Why can't I lock onto the scent? It's like it's all around us, covering all the trees.' He took another few sniffs, realization dawning on him. 'This is its territory. Not good. Papa taught me better than that.' Shippou jumped down to the ground and got into a defensive stance. "Get ready for battle, there's a demon somewhere near us and I can't pick out where exactly."

Kouga and Ayame both began to sniff the air. "I still have that skunk demon blood on me so I can't smell anything," replied Kouga.

"I'm sitting too close to skunk boy to smell anything but him," retorted Ayame which earned her a hard glare.

"The scent is all around us. I think we've stumbled into its territory. Everyone prepare yourselves," ordered Shippou.

"Lady Kagome, do you sense any jewel shards?" questioned Miroku.

Kagome shook her head. "No, but I do feel a demonic aura in the area."

Miroku nodded. "As do I. It appears to be all around us however."

Shippou growled under his breath. 'How useless can those two be? At least my reason for not knowing is because the scent is surrounding us.'

Suddenly, without warning, a black object pounced upon Kagome. The girl shrieked as the object bounded off into the woods again.

"What was that?" the priestess questioned.

Shrugging shoulders and shaking heads were the answers she received from most of the group.

"Cat."

Four faces turned to look at the figure who'd spoken. He did not look at them; he simply stared off into the darkness after the creature.

"How do you know that?" the monk questioned.

"I saw it, stupid. It's a panther demon, I believe. Just a small one, still fast as Hell though."

The four tall figures glanced down at the shorter one. "Wow, good eyes, Shippou," Ayame complimented.

Shippou nodded but didn't utter a word for a few more minutes. 'Something is wrong, the scent just changed.' He glanced back over his shoulder. "Where are the shards?"

"Where they always are, right he-" but Kagome didn't finish as she realized the vile she kept the shards in was no longer around her neck. "It's gone! It must have fallen off when it pounced me."

Shippou snorted. "Don't be an idiot. It pounced on you because you had the shards. It's taken them and it just used them. We're in trouble."

"How much trouble?" Miroku asked.

A loud roar began from deep in the woods and only grew louder and more menacing. "More than we can handle," replied Shippou.

While the fighters prepared themselves for the oncoming slaughter, Shippou felt something. 'What is this? It's like how I feel when I'm with papa.' As Shippou stood there with his sword drawn and transformed another thought came to him. 'It is papa. He's coming to help me.' Shippou stopped himself from pondering any further to keep his mind from wandering away. It was just in time too.

A towering black mass stepped forth through the trees, pushing them over as it did. The normal-sized panther demon was gone, having been replaced by a massive creature instead. It's newly elongated fangs dripped poison, its front legs had transformed into powerful arms including razor-sharp claws ready to sink into the flesh of innocent victims. The back legs had morphed a bit as well, leaving powerful haunches that looked permanently squatted and ready to pounce. The creatures back had curved too, adding to the menacing look of a cat snarling and raising its hackles.

'Definitely more than these weaklings can handle. Get here soon, papa,' thought Shippou.

Kagome drew back an arrow on her bow. "The shards are in the neck. I've got it." She let loose the purifying arrow. Her power had grown over the passing months, but against the panther demon with over two dozen jewel shards it was just wishful thinking.

The demon saw it coming, and moved to intercept the arrow with its giant fangs. The powerful blast did manage to shatter a few of the fangs, sending the flying debris towards the shard hunters.

Miroku saw the poison filled fangs heading towards them. There was no time to dodge them, leaving him with only one choice. He quickly removed his prayer beads and shouted, "Wind Tunnel!" He quickly closed off the void after he'd sucked up the pieces. The poison instantly began surging into his body. "That wasn't the smartest thing I've ever done," he said as he collapsed to the ground clutching his arm.

"No really," grumbled Shippou. "Kagome, since your arrows only made our problem worse, make yourself useful and help Miroku." His statement brought some tears to the girl's eyes but she complied with a nod. "Kouga and Ayame, you're with me to try and take it out."

"I've been looking for something that might pose a challenge," Kouga boasted.

"Don't get cocky, Kouga," chided Ayame.

'No, please do so that you get yourself hurt,' thought Shippou.

Kagome began to look through her pack for the poison kit and other supplies she needed for Miroku. Miroku couldn't resist her bent over form and rubbed her butt. He was rewarded with a loud slap. "Can't you think of anything else!" Kagome yelled at him.

"It's my hand! It's cursed and poisoned now too!"

'Idiots,' Shippou grumbled in his mind as he turned back to the fight.

Kouga dashed straight at the panther. He used his shard-enhanced speed and began a series of punches and kicks. A few of them landed against the large head of the beast; however most were blocked by the powerful arms. Kouga kept at his attack. He continued to pound upon the panther demon with multiple kick and punch combos.

The panther finally had enough of the weaker demon that was attacking it and swatted it away with a claw.

Kouga went flying through the air and impacted with a few trees that were in his way.

"Well that was highly effective," muttered Shippou while gazing at the unconscious form of the wolf.

Ayame began throwing her leaves from nearby. They seemed to only scratch the panther despite the razor-sharp edges they held. Next she tried blasting it away with some wind attacks, this only ruffled the fur.

The panther swung at her but she was far enough away to dodge.

"My turn, Ayame," called Shippou as he leapt into the air with his sword drawn. "Fire Strike!" The blade of fire impacted with the demon and it screamed in pain. Shippou and Ayame regrouped by the others as they prepared to defend them. The fire died down revealing a strip of charred flesh and singed fur on the panther, but no real damage.

"This doesn't look promising, Shippou," voiced Ayame.

Shippou was about to agree when that familiar feeling returned, but in such force that it meant only one thing.

The panther demon pounced for the band of shard hunters, who braced themselves for a painful death. Out of the dense woods a silver blur impacted with the panther demon throwing it off into the distance. The blur stopped and stood before them.

"Papa!" screamed Shippou.

The onlookers were stunned to watch as the creature before them began to glow and morph into the body of Inuyasha.

"What's the problem, Shippou?" asked Inuyasha as he withdrew and transformed the Red Tetsusaiga.

"It got the shards from Kagome and used them," replied Shippou as he stood next to Inuyasha with his own transformed sword.

"I don't want to know how it managed that or how many shards that is."

"Trust me, it will only piss you off," remarked Shippou.

"Speaking of pissing me off; the girls have started to pet my ears in my sleep."

Shippou cringed. "That's why I don't hang out unless you're there. They do that with my tail."

Inuyasha chuckled. "Guess I'll have to give them a talking to." He then gazed over at Shippou, "You'll be getting one too, son."

Shippou couldn't only gulp, "can't wait."

"Also got hugged by Kagura today."

"Wow, the ears are a serious turn-on for girls huh? How'd Sango take that?"

Inuyasha just looked over at Shippou and narrowed his eyes. It was then that Shippou noticed the bump on the half-demon's head.

"Ah, I see. You seriously hit that panther hard."

"Yeah, it should be back by now."

The panther announced it's return with a loud roar as it surged towards the small group.

Inuyasha just smirked. "You haven't seen my Wind Scar since I changed, have you Shippou?"

"No, I haven't."

"Then let's end this fast so I can get back to the girls." The winds began to swirl around the blade of the Tetsusaiga as Inuyasha raised it over his head. "Time to die, bastard. Wind Scar!" Inuyasha brought the blade down to slam into the ground unleashing the five streams of energy. The attack ripped through the panther demon like it was nothing. "Well, my work here is done. Remember, you've gotta meet Sesshomaru in a week. Don't forget the shards." Inuyasha replaced the Tetsusaiga into it's hilt and transformed again. He ruffled Shippou's hair and then took off back into the woods.

Everyone just stared off after the retreating blur. Shippou picked up the shards and brought them back

"He came, he saw, he conquered," remarked Kagome while the rest just nodded in agreement.

Shippou began to walk back towards the stunned members of his group. He knew there was gonna be a lot of questions for him, but that they were too shocked to ask any of them now. 'At least I'm not having the problems papa is having with females though,' he thought with a smirk.

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JacketSlacker: Well, it's been a long time. I'm sorry it's taken so long to write, but things have just been working against me. I know there wasn't much action in it, but I was going for a lighter chapter for some plot buildup and a bit of comedy. Hope you like it all the same. Review please. I'm still looking for someone to illustrate some pictures for me so if interested drop me a line.