Drips and drabbles featuring various and sundry from the Sesshomaru-gumi. Ratings will vary from G to M. Bewarez. Author is a pro-SessRin 'shipper.
Blanket Disclaimer: I disclaim. InuYasha, its characters and all related indicia are sole property of Rumiko Takahashi and her affiliates. No monetary profit is sought or gained in the writing of this piece.
The imp’s voice carried loud on the heady, vaporous air. The young woman gasped in surprise, scrabbling for purchase on the slope of the slick boulder she perched on; water leapt on high, crashing loud and casting circular ripples sweeping across the steaming surface for several moments before smoothing over. She grasped for the sodden length of cotton that served for both scrubbing and a modest covering, not entirely satisfied with the coverage provided by the long raven hair clinging slick about her limbs.
‘H-hai, Jaken-Sama!’ she called somewhat shakily in response, clutching the cloth to her chest.
Bobbing above the underbrush, the face of a slumbering princess, the more aesthetically pleasing half of the duo crowning the staff of Nintojo, hovered into view through the drifting steam. The foliage near the spring’s edge quivered and rustled before a diminutive Youkai emerged, folding a soft grey bundle fussily over his arms. The imp glanced up at her briefly, unconcernedly, where she sat on a worn protrusion of stone roughly positioned in the centre of the steaming pool. Her knees were drawn tight up against her chest, one arm securing the covering over her front, her expression polite and enquiring but flushed and slightly sheepish. Of course, he’d been attending her while she bathed since she’d been barely more than a whelp so there was nothing he hadn’t seen before, but she was entitled to her modesty if she so wished, though the little demon personally thought it a little foolish.
Shaking his head, Jaken carefully laid his consignment down several feet away from the water’s edge and lifted the top fold up to show her. The material was a pale sliver-grey decorated sparsely with a delicate, wispy white ornamentation. ‘It’s the best I could do, girl,’ he sighed. ‘The dye yield didn’t turn out particularly well this year . . .’ After having been charged with securing all of the girl’s garments over the past decade-and-a-bit, the dog demon’s retainer considered himself something of an expert on kimono. He let the fabric fall and produced a tightly bound bundle of material from his wide sleeve; what he revealed as a soft pink obi decorated with sakura blossoms. ‘This should do, though,’ the imp added approvingly, clearly proud of his find.
Rin smiled. ‘Oh, no, Jaken-Sama, they’re both lovely,’ she assured him, shaking her head for emphasis. ‘Thank you so very much . . . I don’t think the other one would have made the spring.’
The demon grunted his agreement, eyeing the somewhat threadbare olive kimono askance as he bent to pick the discarded ensemble up. ‘Probably not.’ Jaken was very fickle with his affections for the articles he picked, Rin had noticed with amusement, and picky enough to rival any dealer or aficionado. ‘Might get a few coins for it . . .’ he mused, giving the garment an appraising once-over. They rarely let anything go to waste. An old kimono could be made into a blanket, an undergarment, a pair of tabi; the material (washed and mended if so required, of course) could be sold to a passer by, or bartered for food or other necessities at a village. It was always of a good quality make, at the very least; their lord made sure of that.
Stowing the bundle inside his sleeve, Jaken brushed himself down and took up his more business-like stance, folding his arms together about the Staff of Heads. ‘Have you seen Sesshomaru-Sama about?’
‘He went patrolling this morning, Jaken-Sama.’
‘Alright.’ The imp turned away and began to make his way off towards the campsite. Holding a clump of tall, tufted reeds aside, he paused and looked over his shoulder. ‘Do you want me to send Ah-Un to you?’
‘Anou . . . No thank you, Jaken-Sama.’ The girl shook her head. ‘I’ll be okay.’
‘Very well, then . . . And don’t take too long, girl, Sesshomaru-Sama should return soon if he’s been gone since morning.’
She nodded obediently. ‘I won’t.’
The little demon shambled off, retracing his path through the underbrush and disappearing through the trees.
Rin waited until the imp’s footfalls had completely faded away before relaxing again. Sagging slightly, she laid the cloth aside and sighed deeply, unfolding her legs from her chest and lowering them to kick her feet in the water. Movement disturbed the surface of the water where it lapped at the foot of the rock and a pale form emerged, draped in sodden silver, rising up in front of her to wrap an arm around her waist and lift her off the boulder. She wound her arms about his neck as he lowered them into the steaming water.
‘What did you tell him?’ the demon murmured into her ear.
She blushed slightly, deepening the flush from the heat of the spring.
‘I-I said you’d gone to patrol this morning,’ she answered, tracing the silvered scar around his left bicep. ‘It wasn’t a lie . . .’ she added defensively.
Sesshomaru chuckled slightly. ‘Merely a roundabout truth.’
Rin pouted a bit at his evident amusement and hid her face against the Taiyoukai’s neck.
He took up a peaceable rumbling that disturbed the surface of the water ever so slightly and ran a placating hand down the girl’s spine, smoothing her dark hair down her back.
‘Perhaps we might let him see the truth for himself next time?’ he suggested calmly.
The young woman’s head came up in startled surprise, and she stared at him widely. Sesshomaru smiled at her.
Rin tucked her nose against the dog demon’s neck and hugged him tight with legs and arms, hiding her smile against his skin. ‘If you think he can survive the shock.’
The Taiyoukai smirked, and rested his chin upon her crown.
Author's Note: Shameless WAFF. Shameless.
Muhahaha ... Must do more of these ...