"Clutz! You've been using that bow for nearly five years and you still miss your targets!"
"Shut up! I'd like to see you try to use it! But, of course, you must prefer a weapon that you can use to kill without thinking!"
Sango and Miroku walked ahead of InuYasha and Kagome as they continued to bicker over their latest demon exterminating mission. It'd been a trio of adolescent ogre girls messing around and causing trouble in a village, who called on their father to help them when they found they couldn't contend with the group of demon slayers. Originally, they took on the trifle mission to test Sango and see if she was well enough to start fighting again after giving birth to her and Miroku's son. Apparently, somewhere in the brief battle, half the group's attention switched to InuYasha taking most of the ogres out by himself, and Kagome's arrows missing the marks she'd planned them to hit.
"At least I took out some of those ogres!" InuYasha growled. "You stood back fumbling with that quiver so long, you barely got any shooting done!"
"Oh, excuse me!" Kagome retorted. "I was trying not to hit the big idiot jumping in the way of my shots!"
Miroku shook his head, deciding to cast his eye over at Sango. Her arms were folded, her eyes looking very annoyed. She wasn't one to thrive on attention, but, she had expected someone to pay some attention to her own performance.
Miroku reached over and gently touched her shoulder. "I saw that little stall when you lifted the Hiraikotsu," he said quietly. "It wasn't much, so, you could try again. But, I hope you won't over-do it… alright?"
Sango looked up at him, her cheeks turning a light pink color. "It's not that it hurt or anything," she answered him, also keeping her voice low. "It's just that it was heavy. I've tried to start lifting weights, but, I can't ever ask Kagome to babysit while I do so. InuYasha's been setting her off so much lately… so she keeps…"
Miroku lowered his head a bit, a slightly more glum expression coming to his face. "I see…" he said. "How long do you suppose that force of habit will keep her running back there?"
Sango shrugged, peering back as Kagome and InuYasha began to turn red with fury. "I thought she'd get over it in the first couple of weeks that she'd lived here…" she replied, shifting the position of the giant boomerang on her back. "But then… she started going there more often… now she's running out there every few hours, whenever InuYasha starts fighting with her…"
Miroku nodded, his hand sliding down to the small of Sango's back. "It can't be easy on her," he said, looking back as Kagome threw her hands in the air, describing InuYasha's idiocy, no doubt. "But, it can't be good for her to keep running like that… Should we try to stop her?"
Both shifted uncomfortably, spotting the village ahead. Both of them stiffened, feeling worried as they heard Kagome give a great roar of anger, storming forward past them. "I've had it with you!" Kagome snapped. "I'm going home!"
She zoomed forward, stomping her feet as she always would… when heading back to her own time. Sango reached back behind her, taking Miroku's hand off of her back to squeeze it in her own, stopping him from grabbing her in an inappropriate manner, and trying to sooth the burn in her chest going out to Kagome.
Miroku couldn't even feel disappointed at being thwarted like that, and accepted Sango's still vice-like grip, already considering ways to lecture and punish InuYasha for being so insensitive and bullying Kagome in her delicate state.
However, neither was aware… just behind them… an aura was switching completely.
"Finally!" came a low voice. "Man, it takes so long to set her off on purpose!"
Suddenly, the red and white blur of demonic speed darted ahead after Kagome, leaving Sango and Miroku to wonder what had just happened.
Both blinked. Both loosened their grips on each other's hands. Both looked at each other.
"He hasn't gone after her since before she went home for the last time." Sango noted.
"This could bode well…" Miroku agreed, lowering his head slightly. "Or further ill for Kagome as we know her…"
Sango flinched at that last comment, looking away to hide her fear from him. Her best friend was hurting more than she would allow her face to show, and it killed Sango to watch her, waiting, hoping Kagome would say something to her so that she could try and help. But, as it was... Kagome didn't even seem to know how badly damaged she was. All that could be done until Kagome realized what she needed was to wait.
As Sango looked off into the open land, she spotted a leaf, floating on still air, heading right for them. "Miroku," she said, pointing at the leaf, taking hold of it as it reached them. Bringing it close, she and Miroku saw there was writing on it. "Ah, good timing!" Miroku said, urging Sango to continue with him toward the village. "The twins will be so excited."
Sango nodded, the tiniest smile touching her face as she hoped this would also help Kagome when she returned.
Way ahead of them, however, Kagome kicked up dirt on a beaten path, running as fast as she could in her bulky red hakama. Along the way, she quickly rid herself of her bow and quiver of arrows, angry beyond measure, and just looking to get away from the building bitterness before it really hurt someone. Idiot… why is he always picking on me? She asked herself. I'm trying my best, aren't I? That's all he'll even say toward a compliment… Would it kill him to tell me I'm doing well?
She stumbled over fallen branches and upraised roots, bruising her legs and feet, and weaving her way through the trees seeking the break in them that meant… she'd reached her destination…
I have to try… just one more time… Kagome told herself. I mean, I thought it was over before… maybe it's still…
Finally, Kagome ran into the clearing, her eyes immediately falling on the ancient wooden structure in the center of it… the Bone-Eaters' Well.
She approached it, putting her hands on the edge of it and peering down inside. Darkness. The smell of rotting demon carcasses. The faint outline of their bones at the bottom. The air inside was still.
Kagome's brow furrowed as she shifted to sit on the edge, swinging her legs around to hang down the inside. Please… just once… she pleaded to unseen forces as she slid off the edge, falling down into the bottom of the well.
She hit the bottom, falling to sit, her head colliding with the wall behind her, and she gasped with the shock of the impact. Tears formed in her eyes at the pain as she reached back to rub her head. Without a word, she looked up. High above her, beyond the well, she hoped she might see the shade of the well's shrine in the era she'd been born into. She hoped to hear faint sounds of the city, cars and distant chatter. Her heart pounded painfully, forming a lump in her throat, chains of hopelessness weaving over her as she stared up. All she could see… was clear blue skies, a few birds flying over, disappearing from sight past the edge of the well.
Again… I'm still in the Sengoku era… Kagome thought to herself, lowering her gaze to her lap. It's… really never going to open again, is it?
Her breathing picked up, threatening to become sobs. Her will to find energy to stand left her. Her heart sank deep into her belly, tears streaming down her face. Why am I doing this? She asked herself. This was my choice… Now, I have to live with it… I have to live here with it...
Tiny sobs of despair began to escape her chest. Her hands grabbed at the dirt beneath her, silently cursing it for blocking her way to her home… her family…
Mama… Grandpa… Even Sota… Never again…
The memories of her family's faces flashed through her mind. Kagome's face grew sore from the bitter grimace of anger and sorrow twisting her features almost beyond recognition. Her shoulders shook violently as she began to cry. The pain built up strong in her chest, urging her to begin taking the deepest breaths she could manage, preparing to scream it all out.
The voice shocked her, bringing Kagome to raise her head. All at once, she felt a breeze as something landed beside her, shifting as something slipped under her knees and behind her back, yelping in surprise as she felt herself rise up out of that well in two seconds flat, watching as she even rose above the forest canopy.
All around her, she could see the vast expanse of the trees, and every clearing that dotted it. She could even see the village neighboring the one she'd chosen to live in, and the mountains miles and miles away.
As she turned to see how much more of the environment was visible, however, Kagome spotted a red haori, bringing her attention upward.
"Hang on tight!" InuYasha said, pulling her close. "It's going to get a little bumpy in a second!"
Kagome frowned up at him and turned away to rub at her tears. "Put me down!" she demanded, trying to sound more angry than distraught and beginning to push at his chest. "I was fine! I didn't need your help!"
"Quit whining!" InuYasha told her, shifting her around to rest on his back as he landed in the trees, beginning to leap forward. "I'm going to take you somewhere nice. You like being taken to nice places, right?"
Kagome paused briefly, taking in his sudden change of tone. He… he isn't angry anymore? She asked herself. But… I'm still furious… He's usually more stubborn than me! I'm always the first to call a truce! How is he over that fight so quickly?
InuYasha peered over his shoulder at her, his bright yellow eyes gleaming with subtle anticipation. Kagome huffed, turning to face away from him, allowing herself to take hold of his shoulders as he carried her on through the forest. "Whatever…" she sighed, deciding to focus on keeping her tears at bay while he kidnapped her.
InuYasha frowned at her lack of enthusiasm, scoffing at her as he dashed through the trees, smoothly jumping and landing on branch after branch. Kagome waited calmly, though she wasn't entirely patient with him right then. She only hoped that her eyes wouldn't be too puffy or red by the time they got to the 'nice place'.
It was several minutes before the scenery was anymore than trees.
Finally, InuYasha leapt out of the shade of the forest, Kagome raising her head to see what the new light held. To say the least, she was surprised. They now beheld a broad meadow covered in at least a thousand different wild flowers, a few butterflies and bees flitting from flower to flower, collecting their nectar, seeming to dance to inaudible music. In the center of it all, a grand banyan tree stood apart from all others, covered in mosses and ivies, birds going in and out of its enormous canopy, building nests and singing for potential mates. The tree itself was nearly as big as a small castle, and held an air of ancient wisdom like no other that'd ever been felt.
Kagome took a fresh breath, not realizing she'd suddenly held it at the sight before her, slowly blinking and bringing her gaze down to InuYasha. With strangely serious eyes, he turned away from her, starting through the meadow toward the banyan tree, letting Kagome down to sit on the ground before it, taking a seat beside her.
For a moment, things were quiet. An awkward aura loomed about the two figures sitting beneath the enormous tree. Kagome fidgeted once, turning her attention to InuYasha. It's completely unlike him to be over a fight this quickly! She thought to herself. What is he thinking that's so much more important to him than winning our fight?... Putting it that way, I should start small. I don't want to hurt him, even though he's a jerk... "Were you even angry to begin with back there?" Kagome asked, her tone calmer, and leaning toward caution.
InuYasha looked at her, his expression bemused. "Angry? No, not really," he said, completely nonchalant about it. "I just needed you to be angry with me for a bit."
Kagome's fists tightened. He did that on purpose?! She screamed in her head. Well, he got what he wanted! He'd better have a good reason for it!
"What for? Why on earth would you want me to be angry?" Kagome asked, glaring at him and beginning to get furious again.
InuYasha watched her closely, his eyes completely innocent as though he was sure she'd known what he was doing from the start. "I wanted you to help ward off or leave the group so we could come here," he said, leaning forward, trying to better read her expression. "Isn't it obvious?"
Kagome paused for a moment, flabbergasted by his… unusually brilliant but still unclear plan. I can never tell where this idiot will lead me next, can I? she asked herself. Even so… all he wanted was to bring me here? Just me…
Kagome felt a warm blush touching her face, her bitter feelings beginning to give to new emotions, and she shook her head, looking out at the meadow. "W-Well… it is a nice place," she said, wrapping her arms around her knees. "I don't really get…"
She stopped short, knowing she was about to be rude about her uncertainty and realizing that everything InuYasha did was significant to him, even if she couldn't see it. The last thing she wanted, though she was still very upset, was to hurt him.
InuYasha nodded, understanding her feelings for once, silently thanking her for withholding any insult she might've thought about speaking. "My mother used to bring me out here," InuYasha told her. "She would collect herbs while I chased and captured bugs. We'd come out here to get away from her royal life when it got too… annoying."
Kagome looked at him, putting aside her feelings for a moment to note the sad look in InuYasha's eyes. He's… opening up about his past? Now? Why? She asked herself. I still don't get what's going on!
Silence fell between the two yet again as they watched the butterflies and bees fly in and out of the mini forest of flowers. Questions were filling Kagome's head, but she didn't have the energy to become brave enough to speak them. InuYasha was very uncharacteristically still, his thoughts whirring around through his eyes as the rest of his face remained unfathomable. Quietly, InuYasha reached over and took Kagome's hand, sending a shock straight to her heart.
Kagome's face went very red as she waited for an explanation, casting a glance around to be sure they were alone. InuYasha turned to meet her eye, his expression very serious, now. "Stop going to the well." He told her, suddenly.
Kagome froze on the inside, her hand shifting in InuYasha's tight grip. For a moment, she was quiet, letting the information set it. W-What… What does that have to do with anything? She asked herself. He brought me out to his mother's secret hideaway to tell me to stop going to the well? Where is the connection, here?
InuYasha pulled her hand toward him a bit, gently pulling her in as well. "I understand, you know… we all do…" he told Kagome. "Losing family… We've all felt that pain before."
Kagome couldn't quite figure out what to do, allowing him to pull her into his arms, gently holding her. Miroku's father… Shippo's parents… Sango's whole clan… Kaede's sister… InuYasha's mother… All of them…
"We know it hurts… The idea of never seeing them again…" InuYasha continued, stroking her hair once. "But, you know… You're only hurting yourself by going back to that well, knowing it won't open again… Giving yourself false hope and then ripping it away… You may as well break all your limbs. It wouldn't hurt near as much as this."
All of a sudden, Kagome found she was trembling in his arms, and her arms twitched, moving up an inch. InuYasha held her a little tighter, hoping to help quell her tremors. She needed to know. She needed to have her mind set straight in front of her, or she would never get better. She needed to hurt now, and let it all out... lest she go insane from holding it all in for too long.
Kagome began to loosen up, now, her weight leaning into him. InuYasha supported her easily, letting her know that he was there... that he would always be there. "It… It hurts us, too…" he admitted, his voice lowering to a whisper. "To watch you kill yourself slowly like this… It hurts us to think you used to be so strong… and now you're reduced to this…"
Kagome squeezed her eyes closed, tears still seeping through as she put her arms around him, holding him tightly, as though trying to strangle her despair. InuYasha felt no strain from her grip, continuing to hold her as she began to lose control of the hurt she'd been trying to hide for so long. "I won't ask you to forget them… Don't ever forget them…" InuYasha said, leaning his head down to rest on her shoulder as he held her. "But… Stop going back to that well… stop hurting yourself… and don't cry like this again."
"I'M NOT CRYING!" Kagome screamed suddenly, nearly bursting his eardrums as she began to wail over his shoulder, crying out for her mother, her grandfather and her younger brother, hoping they would hear her from five hundred years away… and silently thanking all deities that InuYasha had brought her out there for her to do so. He's right… everyone else has watched their family die… At least I can be sure mine is alive… Grandpa will even out-live me, in a way, now that I live here! She told herself. So… I guess… I can stop… For good… For him...
For nearly an hour, the two of them sat there, Kagome crying with everything she had, InuYasha waiting on her to calm down, using thoughts of his own mother to keep his patience up. Good… This'll be one of the few times I'll ever appreciate Kagome's tears… InuYasha thought to himself. Because after this… she'll be better…
Finally, Kagome pulled away a bit, still sniffling, and putting her head against his chest while she tried to breathe. "So… you didn't actually think my shots were clumsy back there?" she asked, her voice hushed from over-use.
InuYasha became a bit confused then. "You were actually in the battle back there?" he returned her question with his own.
Kagome gave the slightest brief grimace at his answer. Never mind…
InuYasha held her hands as she pulled away to look at him, her blue eyes still sad but… grateful. The tiniest smile touched InuYasha's lips, causing Kagome's heart to skip a beat. How rare it was that he smiled at her this way... it brought Kagome further comfort and even a bit of courage to see him smile like this. She brought her right hand up to touch his cheek, returning his smile, and silently renewing her vow to always protect it. All at once, the moment changed. From a moment of pain being let go to a moment of… realization.
He brought us here to be alone…
She's better now… and we're still alone…
Would it be alright to…?
InuYasha leaned down an inch, stopping to wait for her to give him permission to move closer. Kagome moved back into him, her breathing settling, but her heart still pounding heavily, hoping she was reading this moment right, as they'd gotten so few of them before now. Their eyes exchanged feelings of thanks and hope, hesitating just a moment longer to be sure… and soon settled closed as their lips met in a gentle, loving kiss. The world around them was forgotten. Pain slipped away in the warm embrace of comfort. And, silently, they agreed that it wouldn't be so awful… if they just stayed there for a while longer…
Nightfall, in the village…
"They're still out…" Miroku noted aloud.
Sango and Kaede tended to the children, trying not to show the worry growing in them. No one had seen or heard from InuYasha or Kagome since earlier today. They hadn't expected the exchange between the two missing people to go quickly. But, they didn't think it would take this long, either.
"Suppose they worked it out…" Kaede said, fastening a fresh cloth to the baby boy's bottom. "Why would they still be out?"
"Perhaps… they found something else to fight about?" Miroku suggested. "Something lighter, more easily shrugged off…"
Sango was quiet for a bit longer before putting in her suggestion. "Maybe… They're battling demons who thought they could get those two while they're separated from us…"
Hums of agreement went around, accepting the answer. All eyes turned to the door however, knowing how unlikely it was that Kagome's distraught feelings were worked out so easily. No one wanted to bring up suggestions for what might've happened if the two didn't make up, though. With Kagome in the state she'd been in, the worst case scenario was simply too grim...
Sango picked up her twin girls and held them to her chest for comfort. Kaede picked up Sango and Miroku's son, wrapping him in a thin kimono, her eyes off in another place, unseen to everyone else. Miroku stared out the door, watching the path to the Bone Eaters' Well, and waiting for some sort of change.
The voice made the very house start as a pink balloon with big eyes and a tiny mouth floated down out of the sky.
"Oh, Shippo!" the twins cried out in joy, hurrying out to tackle the balloon as it popped, turning back into a young demon fox who screamed out in terror as the two little toddlers jumped on him. The heavy mood was lifted just a little as the little girls pulled on Shippo's fluffy tail, and his pointed ears, hugging him like a toy and very nearly smothering them with their very strong love and joy.
The adults moved outside, now, preparing to rescue the young fox from the toddlers, small, half-distracted smiles on everyone's faces.
"It's been a while, hasn't it?" Miroku asked. "Welcome back, Shippo."
"Have you completed your training?" Sango asked.
Shippo grunted, forcing himself to sit up with the weight of the twin girls on his chest. "Not by a long shot!" he said, beginning to try pushing the little girls off of him. "But, I found time for a break, so, I came to see how everyone was doing without me!"
He cast his gaze around quickly as he began to give out under the toddlers, question reaching his face. "Where's Kagome?" Shippo asked, flopping back down to the ground.
All at once, the heavy mood returned, kept lighter only by the squeals of the twins as they greeted Shippo endlessly. No one had an answer for him. No one wanted to consider that something might be wrong. Everyone, however, began to consider going out to look for said woman and her combatant. Miroku looked to Sango. She folded her arms in uncertainty as she reluctantly met his gaze, her fears evident within her deep brown eyes. Kaede held the baby boy a bit closer, mentally preparing herself for a night of watching the children.
Yet again, everyone looked up.
On the road, slowly making his way toward them, InuYasha was walking, Kagome on his back, waving a hand in the air. Her smile shone brightly through the dark of the evening, tearing through all dark emotions and filling everyone with a comforting warmth. Everyone breathed sighs of relief, smiles returning at the sight of Kagome looking so much better.
"Oh! Shippo's there! Shippoooo!" Kagome cried, waving both hands in the air now.
"Idiot! Settle down! You're gonna fall!" InuYasha growled, feeling her weight teetering on his back.
She did not settle down until they were close enough to talk to the others, quickly reaching out to take Sango's outstretched hand. "Sorry, we're so late!" Kagome said, still smiling. "We traveled so far away from the village before I realized that I hurt my ankle! InuYasha's been carrying me for the last hour!"
Sango shook her head, rubbing away tears with her free hand, and holding Kagome's hand firmly. "We're just glad you're alright now!" she said.
"Come inside child, let me have a look at thy ankle." Kaede said, extending her free arm toward Kagome.
Kagome gave a little nod, still smiling as she put her arm over Kaede's shoulders, allowing her and Sango to remove her from InuYasha's back and walk her inside.
Shippo and the twins followed them in, leaving Miroku and InuYasha to talk outside.
"So, what did you two do all this time?" Miroku asked, sounding suspicious.
InuYasha stiffened, suddenly unsettled. "What do you mean 'what did we do'?" he asked.
"Please!" Miroku scoffed. "No couple stays out alone for this long without having done something! Even if you have been carrying Kagome all this way, I know it couldn't possibly take you an hour! And she looks so much better than she has in a long time… Surely you two did something!"
"Oh, shut up!" InuYasha snapped.
Inside, Kaede tended to Kagome's foot, while she held Sango and Miroku's son, Sango herself trying to get the twins ready for bed for the night. All the while, Kagome was smiling at a distant splendor only she could see, her heart still racing, and her face feeling warm. To say the least, she was feeling the best she'd ever felt in her life, her heart pounding pleasantly hard, and all cold feelings melted away from her heart. He's such a jerk… I keep forgetting how kind he can be… Thank you, InuYasha…
"Kagome? You're blushing!"
She looked up, turning to face Sango as she tucked the twins into their bed, holding Shippo down between them to make sure they stayed there. The red on Kagome's face deepened without her consent, making the embarrassment at being caught in her reverie all the worse. "W-Was I? My, how strange! Heh-heh!" Kagome said, trying to smile and laugh it off.
"Did something happen between you and InuYasha?" Sango asked, her eyes curious and already filling with surprise as though she already knew what happened.
Kagome shook her head wildly. "Of course not!" she said, desperation touching her voice. "What are you talking about?"
"Ye were quite furious when ye left, as I hear it," Kaede said, fastening a bandage around Kagome's ankle. "Surely InuYasha did something to bring ye back to thy normal state."
"What did you two do?" Sango asked, her eyes pressing down on Kagome.
"We didn't do anything!" Kagome cried, a frown settling on her face now.
"Who would do something with her anyway?"
Attention switched to the door as Miroku and InuYasha finally came in, InuYasha running his mouth with an irritated expression on his face. "She's always angry, she always complains, she's slow, and she sits me at the slightest remark!" he complained, arms folding in his kimono sleeves. "You'd have to be an absolute idiot to do something with Kagome!"
His eyes trailed along the room, finding Kagome's eyes, and he shrank back. She passed off the baby boy to Kaede, who quickly swept the child away to protect him from the coming crossfire. "I'm angry? I always complain? I'm slow?" Kagome asked him, her eyes dark with newly-ignited rage. "The only one displaying such traits here is you! Idiot!"
The insult brought his nerve back, and InuYasha returned her expression. "There! You're angry! You're complaining!" he pointed out. "I'm only stating the truth!"
"I'm angry because of you! Idiot!"
"You already called me an idiot, you idiot!"
"Kah! I'm through!" Kagome stumbled through the house, heading for the door. InuYasha stepped in front of her, some of his rage giving way. "Hey! We had an agreement!" he told her.
With a yelp of shock, InuYasha fell to the floor and Kagome stepped over him, heading out the door once more. InuYasha forced his head up, frowning out the door after Kagome. Idiot! We just got through talking about this! What are you doing?
With a grunt, InuYasha rose from the floor, heading out after her.
All at once, the house was quiet, everyone staring out the door, confused and shocked and not entirely sure where to go from there. Miroku approached Sango, however, leaning toward her. "Something definitely happened between those two." He told her.
"Absolutely." Sango agreed.
Kaede and Shippo nodded, having heard their voices in the silence of the house. The whole place was filled with a familiar chill that everyone knew quite well... things were back to normal...
Outside, InuYasha hurried through the village, heading out to the forest, concern replacing his anger, now. She agreed… She promised she wouldn't come back here… How could she break that promise so easily?
He reached the clearing. There she was, sitting beside the Bone-Eaters' Well, arms resting on the edge, head bent over to hide her face.
InuYasha gave a quiet sigh, watching her for a moment before trying to approach. He could see her shaking, though she wasn't making a sound. All at once, a nasty pit formed in the half-demon's stomach. It seemed she was still delicat enough to be hurt rather easily by simple arguements. Helping her get back to normal was going to take longer than he hoped it would, wasn't it?
He stood behind her now, looking down at her, and deliberating how he was going to convince her to go back to the village with him. "Kagome…"
She reached back, waving her hand dismissively. "Back off! Back off!"
InuYasha lowered his head, walking around to crouch beside her. "You know… I was exaggerating a bit, back there…" he tried.
"Stop looking, already! This is private!" Kagome hissed, waving her hand in his face while she continued with whatever she was doing, plainly not upset anymore.
Now, InuYasha's brows knitted together as he peered through the spaces between her fingers to see that she'd somehow gotten a hold of a brush, paper, and ink, and was writing something with her utmost focus. "W-What is this?" InuYasha asked, greatly puzzled now.
"Just a letter," Kagome said, lightly blowing on the letter to help it dry before continuing. "So many things survived to my time by falling into this well. So, I'm going to start leaving letters in there… if it doesn't violate our agreement too badly, at least. I could leave them by the Tree of Ages instead, but, I'm afraid they'll get lost that way."
InuYasha sat back, putting a few inches between her outstretched palm and his face, curious about her letter, but not interested in being sat again. After a few minutes, Kagome put away the brush and ink, and began blowing on her letter, helping it dry. She waved it lightly in the air and walked around with it hanging limply for a while before deciding it was dry enough to fold up and throw into the well.
Watching it flutter and flip and spin it's way down into the darkness of the well, Kagome let out a peaceful sigh, as though she'd dropped a bit of a weight in instead. InuYasha watched as she stood still, watching her letter fall away. "What did you write to them about?" he asked.
Kagome shrugged, sitting down beside him. "I wrote about you being a stupid, jerk-faced, idiot and how you wouldn't stop picking on me."
InuYasha frowned at this, turning to look at her. "Hey! I tried to ap-"
Once more, InuYasha was yanked down into the ground by the enchanted beads around his neck, cutting off his speech. Almost immediately, Kagome turned to sit beside him, took hold of his shoulder and turned him over to lie on his back. He opened his mouth to protest… and was silenced when Kagome climbed on top of him, leaning her forehead against his. "Until you came up with the most brilliant plan of all time… and made up for every insult you ever threw at me." she finished, giving a tiny smirk.
InuYasha's ears twitched, his eyes bugging wide open and darting around her face, his mind reeling. "So… you weren't actually mad about all that?" he asked.
Kagome smirked, her lips just brushing his. "I know you didn't really mean it," she said. "You always say those things without going into detail unless I challenge you, so I know… Besides, you said so yourself! You'd have to be an idiot to do something with me… What does that make you, hmm?"
InuYasha blinked once, annoyance returning to his eyes. I walked right into that one…
Kagome gave a little sigh, bringing her hand up to twine in his hair. Silently, InuYasha accepted her invitation, his arms wrapping around her waist, his eyes meeting hers.
I wasn't ready to leave when we did…
So, for just a while longer…
Let's just be together…
And there, they stayed, not to be heard from again until morning. Hours passed in the village, and everyone began settling into their beds without them. Shippo snored noisily, still smushed between the twin girls. The baby boy was settled in a basinette, snoozing away. Kaede was settled on her own bedding, the old woman tired out by the emotional stress of the day. Sango and Miroku, however, were still just barely awake, whispering with their eyes closed.
"Something's definitely going on between them." Sango sighed, leaning on Miroku's shoulder.
"For sure…" he agreed, sighing contentedly. "Perhaps… we should follow suit?"
Sango stiffened at the sudden pressure she felt behind her. "Really? While the kids, Kaede, and Shippo are here? All in the same room?" she sighed.
Miroku stiffened now, as he felt Sango lift her arm from his chest.