I adore a/u stories so I decided to try my hand at one. Reviews are appreciated by this inu. For all who have been poor, this is dedicated to you. Enjoy.

Disclaimer: Penpaninu does not claim to own Inuyasha nor is getting paid to write this. Does claim to be inu however. Parodies of Miccy D's from Inuyasha don't belong to this inu either. They belong to people making fun of popular fast food and not wanting to get slapped with a law suit either.

"Impoverished Heir" chapter one

Morning Rush

Inuyasha slit open one eye and scowled as the alarm blared beside his head. He scrubbed his eyes with one palm and slapped at the offending machine with the other. Sounds from a neighboring apartment teased at the corner of his sharp hearing but Inuyasha tried to tune it out. It would be that his neighbors would be having loud morning sex when he was so blatantly alone. Couldn't they be quieter for a change?

"Idiots…" he muttered. Inuyasha sat up and held his aching head in his hands, slowly opening himself to another morning. His futon almost filled his apartment, small for a one-person. Inuyasha had to admit he had lucked out finding a one-room this cheap in this district of Tokyo, but it was as small as a coffin, just as cramped with his meager possessions, and he was darn lucky to have even a window in there. The morning sunlight peeking through the naked blinds (they came with the place) made his head ache even more, but Inuyasha had to admit the window made the closet apartment try to appear larger than it was.

"Thank the kami for that," Inuyasha muttered as he lifted his t-shirt to scratch at his flat tummy. The longhaired young man grabbed a mug, his toothbrush and half a tube of paste and eased out his door to grab a spot at the sink in the hallway. The apartments all shared communal sinks and a restroom for each floor. But no shower. There were a few public baths within a two-block radius so if Inuyasha didn't want to stink, he had to pay for a soak every few days.

The sink was blessedly empty so Inuyasha took his time scrubbing away at his teeth, trying to wake up. No one was in the hallway so he scratched at the elastic waistband of his boxers under his baggy shirt. His loins threatened to stir as his sleep-fuzzed mind tried to pick up sharper sounds of passion from those dratted neighbors, but Inuyasha let his mind go blank, willing himself under control. It wouldn't do to get a hard-on when he had to get going in his day, so Inuyasha sighed, contemplating a day of physical abstinence as he shuffled on bare feet back to his room. He kicked the door shut and set his mug and toothbrush down, then braced his feet wide and stretched mightily.

"Aaaaah!" Inuyasha sighed as he worked the kinks out of his back. He rotated his neck and pushed a lock of dark hair back over his shoulder, reaching for his work uniform. Inuyasha sighed as he shucked his plain t-shirt and pulled on dark slacks over his boxers and reached for a belt. His young body was as trim as ever but sorely lacking in exercise. Having two jobs certainly didn't give one many options for recreation.

"Yes! Right there!"

Inuyasha sighed and shook his head, wishing he had earplugs. Why was he cursed with rather sharp hearing? Just like a dog's sometimes. He grimaced and pulled his striped shirt on and tucked it in. Morning and lunch shift at WacDonalds, and a secretary's assistant position in the evening. How the mighty had fallen, Inuyasha thought. He combed the tangles from his mane and tied it up into a neat bun at the base of his neck.

His father Takahashi Inutaisho had made a successful company from the ground up years before he had been born. The youngest and the brightest had flocked to join the promise of Takahashi Enterprises and Inuyasha could not remember wanting for anything growing up in his parent's rather posh home. His older brother Sesshomaru had gone to college for the learning to show him the way to the job their father surely would have for him and Inuyasha knew he would follow in their footsteps and help uphold the family company. All had seemed bright and well; until his mother died.

Takahashi Izayoi had come from an old noble name and wed Inutaisho after his first wife left him. Sesshomaru learned to accept the charming woman as part of the family, but even Inuyasha knew the distance his onii-chan showed meant he had not completely gotten over his own mother's departure. Oft times his brother was cold, or even downright rude, but he never had neglected him until Izayoi's death.

Inutaisho had grown withdrawn afterward, and finally weak. It seemed the last straw for the family that he was diagnosed with stage two-lung cancer. Sesshomaru took the reins of Takahashi Enterprises in his place but the efforts were not enough. Inutaisho died within a year, and shortly after the shock of his death, the company was run into the ground. Onigumo Naraku had been the company's top competitor and through no fault of Sesshomaru or his financers, he had single-handedly toppled one of the largest businesses in Japan.

Sesshomaru and Inuyasha quickly found themselves with little to nothing and oppositions clashed. Inutaisho intended his sons to both have half of the business he had formed from care and dedication, but when nothing was left, there was nothing left to lose. The brothers fought and quarreled daily as lawyers sucked up the rest of the money trying to find legalities to finding a foothold in their savings. Tempers flared as accounts depleted and Sesshomaru dared lay hands on his half younger brother after a night of drunken despair.

Inuyasha gave back as good as he got, and packed a bag leaving that very night. He limped out of his family's expensive neighborhood to a bus station and right to Sango's door. Her little brother let him in and the two friends had had a long talk. Sango agreed to put him up until he found a place to rent and Inuyasha was grateful for that. He hadn't gone back home since, and used the last of the money Father left to sign a lease at his one-room wonder.

Sango knew the story of what had happened to his family of course, but Inuyasha kept as much knowledge of his poverty to a minimum as he could. Better keep his drama to a short recollection and all that. Sango just thought he had a nest egg in his bank account somewhere that was helping him to live outside of his father's home. Or at least she did in the beginning.

Inuyasha grabbed his backpack and his work hat, pocketing his cell phone as he tugged his shoes on. He locked up and trotted downstairs to the streets to catch the bus. A small melody reached his ears and Inuyasha held up his phone and clicked through a text message as he waited.

'Hey dog boy, this is your wake up call! See you later' –S. Inuyasha grinned fondly as he read the short message from his friend.

Good old Sango. She had been Inuyasha's best friend since high school, and they had done about everything together over the years. They went out, had fun, and even dared to fool around a bit at parties during school. They had never gone all the way though with things as they felt they made better friends than lovers, so their friendship was not damaged in the least bit.

The cell and its monthly bill payment were a gift from her. Inuyasha felt guilty as he clicked the phone off and tucked it away in his pocket. Sango had learned the truth of his situation, as she knew him so well and Inuyasha couldn't lie well, or at least for such a long amount of time. Sango knew her friend was proud, but at the bombshell her best friend finally unleashed, she simply took his hand, drove him to her house, and packed up a spare futon, sheets, blankets, dishes and a rather nice tea set for his apartment.

Inuyasha had always been unnaturally proud, and stubborn, but Sango wore down his complaining, thrusting those belongings into his arms. Inuyasha could only bow his head and accept them, his face bright red. Sango knew the personal cost giving up his pride had done in that moment, and she didn't bring up that incident unless Inuyasha spoke about it first. Inuyasha could only be grateful.

The bus came and all too soon Inuyasha was off and walking into the burger joint he called a life profession. He tugged his cap down over his brow, irritating his round ears as he walked under the underside golden arches. A gaggle of business men and women stood in line for a quick bite on their way to office jobs and other socially pleasing positions. Inuyasha sauntered behind the counter, ignoring the stares of customers wanting another set of hands in a uniform to help them on their way faster. He clocked in and hung up his backpack, pausing to look at the schedule posted up on the bulletin board by the manager's office. The hours were pleasing and would make his paycheck adequate for the rent.

"Takahashi! You're on fryers this morning!" the manager poked her head out. Inuyasha sighed at the perpetual frown on her face and nodded, hoping she'd keep it down about his last name.

"Yes, ma'am," he said and washed his hands. He went to take his place and sweated before the fryers as he made hash browns, and then fries for the two busy meals of the day. Drops of sweat beaded the sides of his jaw and his hair plastered to his head under the cap, but Inuyasha kept at his duties pausing to take a quick sip at a plastic cup of coke when his hands were free. Aside from a small break for an employee-paid meal, this was his only chance at replenishment.

'Son of the great Takahashi Inutaisho, and here I am making fries. Thanks a lot, Pop,' Inuyasha thought sadly.

"Inuyasha, come on! Hurry up," one of his colleagues, a slim college girl urged. Inuyasha salted the fries and scooped her up two large orders and she gave him a bright smile before dashing back to the counter with them. Inuyasha sighed, feeling his heart hurt and tapped the toe of his shoe into the tiled floor.

Sure Megumi was a sweet girl, and she seemed nice as far as the job let him know, but Inuyasha wasn't interested. Girls meant more time and more money, money he didn't have, and that led to more trouble he didn't want. Inuyasha could only think of the girls he had messed around with in school, and the few girls who had shown interest in his glamorous life style now. They heard the name 'Takahashi' and thought being with him and trying to bed him would line their pockets for the many frivolous things girls seemed to want and didn't need.

Inuyasha scowled and dug into his tasks with renewed fury. He was becoming bitter before his time and it made him more crotchety by the minute to realize it. Inuyasha let a colleague watch the fries as he scrubbed the side of the fryer, swept the dining room, and ran into the male restroom to relieve his bladder. The manager had a sharp word with him about THAT decision but Inuyasha grit his teeth. Try telling her time was money when there was piss on the floor, but there you had it. Inuyasha swallowed his pride and said he would ask to leave the floor next time. Then he rushed back to his position to get through the rest of his shift.

Inuyasha was glad to change from his stupid striped burger shirt into a plain dress shirt. He had a night position as a male secretary for a small office. His other friend from school, Hoshi Miroku, worked there with him and it was a relief to sit down, and chat quietly as their fingers flew over their keyboards typing up papers for their boss. Onikage Kikyo was a shrewd woman, but overall not a bad boss and let the young men be. Well, when she wasn't trying to flirt with them. Many men found such a position to be a pleasing one, but it put Inuyasha off. He didn't know what it was, but Kikyo-san gave him the creeps sometimes and he didn't know why. Miroku only accepted her advances gratefully.

Inuyasha sighed and checked for more messages as he walked along the bustling street. He lingered by a newsstand, wishing he had change for a paper. Looking at the headlines, he grimaced and changed his mind hurrying along on his way. His hair let down and combed from its messy Wacdonald's bun, was tied in a neat ponytail and it flew over his back as he jogged away. Straight into a woman of course. It would be the best part of his day now; getting the only human contact outside of his friends through an accident.

"Ow!" the woman cried out, going down hard on the pavement. Inuyasha silently cursed as her stupid heels put her off balance and she fell to her knees. Of course she would be wearing a short skirt. Her knees were going to be black and blue. Inuyasha cussed himself out in his head and stopped. He bowed at the waist and extended a hand down.

"You okay, miss? Sorry bout that, I just have to be somewhere…." Inuyasha bit his lip, his old courtesies coming out rather clipped and short. He sighed and berated his life, waiting for an answer. The woman lifted her head and Inuyasha was struck at the deep blue eyes. Those wide orbs were as dark as the sea and uncommon among the Japanese public. The difference of that struck him as odd and got his attention for all of a minute. Then her lips parted and she spoke and Inuyasha almost went to his knees at the beautiful timbre of her voice.

"I'm fine! It wasn't your fault, don't worry about it," she said easily and Inuyasha smiled at the familiarity she entrusted in him, a perfect stranger. What an extraordinary woman! Wait a minute, this was too good to be true. Second she knew who he was, zip, any chance at a shot of normalcy was gone.

"Ah, that's okay," he mumbled, blushing. He shifted his backpack higher over his shoulder. "Well, I better be going…."

The woman waved as the young man took off running. She gave the man behind the newsstand a few bills and picked up the day's paper. 'Takahashi heir meets with top brokers' was printed in large bold print across the front page and Kagome read the article idly as she walked along. A picture of a somber but fit young man with long dark hair pulled back in a neat tail stared sternly at the camera as he shook hands with an elderly balding businessman. She knew the name Takahashi, as it was familiar to most anyone in Japan who knew who was where, but she didn't know the whole story. Apparently there had been trouble at Takahashi Enterprises a few years back, after Takahashi senior had died. What was his name, Inutaisho-san? Apparently his elder son was trying to pick the pieces up and get things running again. Sesshomaru, she read, skimming the article carefully.

Funny, that college student she had bumped into resembled Sesshomaru-san in a way. True, it wasn't common for men to have hair THAT long here, but it couldn't mean they were related. Just a similarity in grooming after all. Still, he had seemed nice…

Kagome sighed as she went back to her job. She had gotten an internship at the Ookami law firm straight out of college and things had been interesting to say the least. Sure the job was good and the senior of the branch liked her well enough, but that was the problem. He liked her so much, he had set her up to work for his son, Ookami Kouga. And that was a disaster in the making.

Kouga-san was a nice enough man, very earnest and handsome, and as charming as the devil. He was as pushy as a devil, and he had not made it secret his wish to bed her ever since day one. She remembered how he has told her to 'not be hesitant to tell me what you want while you work under me.' That had shocked the hell out of the reserved young woman and she could only stammer a response. 'I don't think what you mean would be appropriate, Kouga-san.' Kouga's eyes had roved up and down her and Kagome felt like prey before a wolf.

'That's fine, Kagome-kun. Just don't keep me waiting,' he had purred. Kagome sighed remembering that. Her pager beeped and Kagome took it out of her purse. Speak of that devil, Kouga was beeping her back in from her lunch break! Wouldn't that horny bastard leave her alone?

Kagome had the feeling she was going in over her head. And she didn't know how to get out of it.

"Kagome-kun! How was your lunch?" Kouga grinned cheekily as she pushed her way into his large office. Kagome sighed and tucked a lock of dark hair over her ear into its bun.

"It was fine, Kouga-san. What can I do for you?" she asked pleasantly. Kouga's eyes twinkled and she inwardly groaned.

"Well, I was asked by Father if we were getting along, and I said quite famously. Wouldn't you agree, Kagome-kun?" The handsome lawyer stood from his chair and prowled around the side of his desk. Kagome stood straight and tall and didn't back down from his game.

"I can't think of any reason why we wouldn't be, Kouga-san. Is there something you wish you elaborate about the work we do together?" All games, every word. Many people in this firm thrived on such games but it wasn't to Kagome's liking. She believed in old-fashioned work and dedication, not tricks or 'legwork.' She had seen the other interns who worked for Ookami Law. More leg than brains there, and all of them showing clear up past the thigh.

Kouga smiled and raked a hand through his mop of dark hair, artfully tousling the shoulder-length locks. "Well, perhaps there is. I was wondering if you would like to go out for drinks with me after hours today. Won't you?"

Kagome held her breath as he gently took her hand, rather unprofessionally she thought.

"I don't know, Kouga-san…" she started. Kouga held her hand up to his lips and pressed a chaste kiss to the back of it.

"I won't say please twice, Kagome-kun. If you don't like me after tonight, I promise, I will never bother you again." He promised. Kagome felt her heart drop into the pit of her stomach. Courtesy would demand she have a drink with him. Kouga was essentially her boss, the son of the law firm's founder. He could make or break her career, he knew it, she knew it, hell everyone on this floor probably knew that.

"Yes, I'll go out with you," Kagome whispered. Kouga's white teeth showed in a wide grin.

"Man, Kikyo sure is a slave driver," Inuyasha muttered. He loosened his collar and stretched with one arm. Miroku waved goodbye to their boss and grinned as he joined his friend.

"Come on, Inuyasha, she's hot, and she's got a thing for you!" Miroku laughed. He was from an old shrine family, but Inuyasha thought he could look as far from a priest as he could. Miroku grew his hair into a small ponytail, had his ears pierced, and walked with an easy swagger. His tendency to flirt with about anything with breasts gave him away as a would-be letch and Inuyasha begrudged him all the times he had frightened away opportunities with Sango over the years. Miroku truly liked her in return, but couldn't get it together long enough to claim his intentions on her. And Sango held him at arms length, never going past their friendship for anything more. She was put off by his roving eye and wandering hand and Inuyasha truly didn't blame her. He also truly didn't get it, but it was their business. He didn't want to get involved in the mess more than he had to.

"Blah! She's older," Inuyasha tried to get away with. That wasn't the reason why Kikyo scared the pasta out of him.

"She's experienced!" Miroku corrected. Inuyasha groaned and shook his head, his low ponytail swaying with the movements.

"You're welcome to her, Miro. Just don't let Sango find out," he advised. Miroku shrugged and grinned helplessly. It always tore his heart when Inuyasha warned him not to hurt Sango, but he didn't know what to do about it. He liked looking and talking with the other girls, but he truly loved Sango.

"I know, Yash, don't worry about it. Hey, want to hit a bar on the way home? All you do is work!" Miroku prodded. Inuyasha sighed, thinking of the small double-digit number currently residing in his bank account.

"No thanks, Miro! Too broke, you know?" he laughed weakly. Miroku clapped him on the shoulder.

"I'll spot you sometime, but you have to go with me! Say you will already, damn you," Miroku said fondly.

Inuyasha sighed." Fine, take me to a crowded smoky bar one night! Thanks for nothing, Miro."

Miroku laughed and punched his shoulder. "You'll never get laid again if you don't unwind alittle! I know you miss your dad and you're working a lot….but you gotta open up to life!"

"Yeah, life moves pretty fast. You don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it," Inuyasha quoted one of their favorite movies wryly. Miroku nodded and checked his cell.

"Well, don't get too old too fast before work tomorrow. See ya, Yash." With that, the priest's son was off at a run. Inuyasha waved and went on his way to the bus station. He got off a few streets from home, wanting to feel the smog and breeze in his hair before he shut himself in his paid coffin.

Inuyasha sighed and ran a hand through his dark bangs. 'Can't hit on everything now, but should take some of Miroku's advice. Live life alittle. How can I when I have to work so much to keep my coffin?' Inuyasha was so lost in thought, he almost didn't hear the couple ahead of him until it was too late.

"I told you, don't touch me. I won't ask you again, Kouga-san."

"Don't be like this, Kagome. You said you'd have drinks with me…"

"I didn't say I'd slip you extra services! I'm calling a taxi."

"Don't be like that, just kiss me."

"No…"

"Kagome, I'm warning you…"

"Stop it, you're hurting me!"

Inuyasha's eardrums throbbed hearing the heated exchange. He looked ahead of him and what he saw made his blood boil. A handsome man in a very expensive suit (Inuyasha's poverty made sure to notice that detail) was manhandling an attractive woman in a skirt and jacket, and she obviously didn't want his attentions. The exchange was getting rough and Inuyash's throat went dry as he contemplated his options. Should he intervene and help the woman? Or go home, and get ready for bed because he had an early day at Wacdonalds? Duty or doing the right thing? Principle over passion?

The woman shrieked and the sound rent Inuyasha's heart to shreds. He chose action and tossed his backpack down, running fast at the erstwhile couple. The man didn't see him coming, and Inuyasha was on him in moments, punching at his jaw to take him down.

It lasted only a moment. And then the woman watched him with wide eyes. Inuyasha's heart stopped. Her eyes were as blue and dark as the sea….

"Hey, I saw you earlier…" Inuyasha found himself saying as the woman fainted. Cussing himself out again, the young man bent over her. The handsome suit had managed to knock her around abit before he had gotten there and his mental cursing got louder, berating his indecision. Those thirty seconds had given the girl quite a few bruises. There was a large one on the side of her head and Inuyasha gulped.

What could he do? He couldn't just leave her there… Tokyo was a safe city as large cities went, but it was downright negligible to abandon an unconscious woman for kami sake! What should happen now? It looked like she had quite a moment and wouldn't be waking anytime soon.

It began to rain and the suit groaned on the sidewalk. Inuyasha made his decision as the man started to come to. He found his backpack and shouldered it, and bent down to pick up the young woman. She molded into the shelter of his arms as if she were made for them. Inuyasha straightened and gave the suit one last kick for good measure, and walked down the sidewalk. His apartment building was around the corner, and he wanted to be out of sight before the suit decided to wake and give him a fight in return.

Inuyasha stumbled up the stairs in his building and cursed softly when he jarred his shoulder against a door.

"Keep it down out there!" The door opened and a woman with curlers in her hair glared hatefully at him. Inuyasha closed his tired eyes for one moment and wished her away from his presence. The sincere wish was not granted as the woman ordered him to get his 'drunk girlfriend' into his room and quick.

Inuyasha decided to take her advice, and fumbled with his key, with the woman propped onto his shoulder. He got the door open, tripped in and got his bearings.

He kicked his shoes off, and nudged his futon open across the floor. Laying the woman down, Inuyasha looked down at her and sighed.

"I don't have time for this," he mumbled in despair. Being a nice guy just messed his evening up and now he had to play nursemaid. But his father would have flipped in his grave had he not been cremated. Takahashi Inutaisho did not raise a brute. Inuyahsa set his backpack down and swept a hand through his damp bangs.

"Now that you're here, what do I do with you?" he mumbled. The woman did not answer. Inuyasha leaned his back against the wall and slid down to sit down. He allowed himself to close his eyes.

End for now

Like it? Hate it? Send a review! New story for a new time.

Penpaninu 3/07/06