This was written a while back as a prize for a contest I had. The winner wanted a "day-in-the-life" of Inuyasha fic based on Moonlight, and set when Inuyasha was three years old...
Author's note: This was written as a prize for Frog-chan who won my Moonlight fanart contest. Her prize was a pic or a fic & she chose a fic. More specifically, she chose a fic based on Moonlight, dealing with a day in the life of little Inu-chan... Thanks for the title, Frog-chan! "winks"
Inuyasha yawned and stretched as he woke up, lying there peacefully on the futon between his foster parents. He giggled quietly when Sesshomaru rolled over and snuggled up next to him. He had thrown an arm around the little hanyou and pulling him close, he mumbled "Tsuki" in his sleep. Inuyasha giggled again as it was always funny to watch his older brother wake up after doing that, especially if he happened to accidentally kick his brother in the crotch as he struggled to get away whenever Sesshomaru would hold him too tightly. Inuyasha never minded whenever Sesshomaru would loosely cuddle him during the night as it made the three year old feel very loved and wanted.
This morning, however, looked as though it was going to be a very interesting one, as his foster mother Tsuki sighed happily in her sleep upon hearing her name. He wondered if they were going to wake up soon and make him go outside and play in the courtyard while they slept. He hoped so because despite the funny noises that came out their room while they were sleeping, they were always in a better mood when they woke up. And Inuyasha wanted his brother to be in an especially good mood today because Sesshomaru had promised to play swords with him if he behaved last night at their father's banquet. Inuyasha had found it easy to do since he sat between his mother and his foster mother as they were better at alleviating his boredom than Sesshomaru was. Even the Okugata-sama was impressed and a little smile tugged at the three year old's lips when he remembered the dango she gave him. Life was good in Inuyasha's humble opinion and it was about to get better but only if he got to play outside.
So he wriggled around under the weight of Sesshomaru's arm until he faced his older brother. He briefly studied his brother's face in the gloomy morning light before he softly called his name. "Maru-chan..."
"Wake up," Inuyasha whispered and when he got no response from him, he gently patted Sesshomaru's cheek. "Maru-chan, wake up!" he said a little louder.
"Hmmmnnnn...?" This time Sesshomaru cracked an eye open at him. "Gotosleep..." he mumbled.
"Maru-chan, I want to wake up and play outside."
"Hunh?" Sesshomaru sighed as he rolled over onto his back.
"I want play outside, Maru-chan! I'll be good and let you and Tsuki-chan sleep and make funny noises," he wheedled and he tried not to laugh when Sesshomaru silently mouthed "make funny noises?" Inuyasha sat up and watched the play of emotion flit across his brother's face ending with a growl.
"I'm going to kill you, you know that?" Sesshomaru hissed and Inuyasha giggled.
Leaning forward, he hugged his older brother. "Nah-ah! You won't killed me cuz you promised to play swords wiff me! OUCH!" He sat up and glared over his shoulder at Tsuki. "Oi! Why'd you pinched me, Tsuki-chan?"
Smiling, Tsuki opened her arms and welcomed him into her loving embrace. "Gomen, Inu-chan, I was dreaming about peaches and when I woke up I saw one. And I just wanted to know if it was ripe enough to pick," she said softly and they giggled as she rubbed his bare little bottom.
The three year old sat up and looked impishly over at his brother. "Kiss it make it better!"
"I'm not kissing your ass! You can forget that, little brother!"
"Maru-chan!" Tsuki said sharply as she cuddled her foster son.
"You pinched it, you kiss it." Sesshomaru looked at them and yawned. "Why don't you dress him, Tsuki and put him outside..."
Tsuki looked over at her mate and sighed. Sitting up, she stretched before standing and Inuyasha mirrored her actions much to her amusement. Taking him by the hand, she led him over to the large tansu that sat against the far wall. Once there, she knelt and the two of them looked through Inuyasha's yukata for something to wear. There was a brief moment of trouble when he insisted on wearing his heavy fire rat haori and hakama, until Sesshomaru, who was trying to fall back asleep, threatened to not play with him later on. Minutes later, Tsuki had him dressed in his short blue yukata, and giving him a couple of rice balls to eat, she opened the shoji leading out to the little courtyard garden.
"Ja ne, Tsuki-chan!" he giggled and holding his onigiri close to his chest; he walked over to the stairs and sat down on the top step. The little hanyou looked out over the garden as he munched on a rice ball. He wondered if the rabbit he saw yesterday was still there. As he finished his last onigiri, he stood up and went down the two steps leading to the little garden. He looked around for signs of the rabbit, and finding none, he climbed the two stairs on the far side of the courtyard. He wandered around on the low veranda, stopping occasionally to poke around whatever caught his fancy.
As he headed back towards the rooms he shared with his foster parents, he stopped to have a look at Kingyo-chan's fish. Kingyo-chan had a large ceramic jar just outside her room, with a wide mouth, where she kept a couple of goldfish. She was one of the few people who genuinely liked the little hanyou and she often gave him bits of cooked rice or fresh greens to feed them. As he stood there splashing about, she came outside and greeted him.
"Ohayou, Inu-chan," Kingyo-chan said softly.
"Ohayou, Kin-chan," Inuyasha said with a smile. "I playing wiff the fishies."
"I see that. Would you like to help me feed them this morning?"
"Hai!" Inuyasha stopped splashing, and wiping his hands on his yukata, he followed her inside. Looking around at her room, he spotted a man who was fast asleep on her futon in the middle of the room. Inuyasha hurried over to him as it was always very exciting to find someone new in her room. Sometimes they treated him kindly like she did, but most of the time they were either asleep, or they ignored his presence. Sensing he was not as close behind her as she would like, Kingyo-chan turned to her little friend and said, "Ssh, you be quiet so that you don't wake Joukyakutaka-sama. We were up late last night and he's very cranky if he doesn't get enough sleep."
"Hai...." Inuyasha said softly as he peered at her visitor. Resisting the urge to laugh, because he found the old man's snoring funny, Inuyasha gave him one last look before he hurried over to where Kingyo-chan waited for him.
"Hold out your hands," she said, before crumbling half a rice ball into his outstretched hands. "Come," she said softly as they turned to leave. Once outside, Inuyasha carefully dumped the rice into the jar. "They're very hungry this morning, and I thank you for helping me feed them," Kingyo-chan said as she knelt and hugged the little hanyou. "Now run along and go play!"
"Bye!" Inuyasha said as he waved at her. He turned and headed back towards to the room he shared with his brother and Tsuki, until he spotted an open shoji. Peering inside, he decided to go play in the inner corridor. Inuyasha ran up and down the corridor, chasing imaginary rabbits, until he ran headlong into his parents.
"Inu-chan! What are you doing out here?" Izayoi asked as she scooped him up in her arms.
"Nothing? Are you sure, little one?" she said as she kissed him much to his delight.
"Ummm, I played wiff Kin-chan's fishies and I played in the garden!"
"You did?" Inutaisho said.
"Hai! Maru-chan and Tsuki-chan are sleeping. Maru-chan's gonna play swords with me when he wakes up, Tadji!"
Inutaisho laughed. "Is he?"
"Hai!" Inuyasha nodded. "Kuro, I'm hungry..."
"My poor baby! Come; let's go find you something to eat." Izayoi looked at her mate and raised her eyebrows at him.
"They should be nearly finished preparing lunch, so let's go see what we can find in the kitchens. What do you want to eat, Inu-chan?" Inutaisho said as he took Inuyasha from her and settled him on his shoulders.
"Ummm..." Inuyasha pretended to think it over. "Dango!" He laughed.
"You can have dango for dessert if they have any left, but I think you should eat something more filling for lunch..."
"Don't want to, Kuro!"
"Then you mustn't be that hungry, ne?"
"Hai...." Inuyasha pouted. "Ummm... I want some meat!"
His parents laughed.
"Sounds good to me!" Inutaisho said.
After lunch his parents brought him back to his room, where they were met by a tearfully relieved Tsuki. "There you are! I've been looking all over for him. Domo arigatou, I appreciate you bringing him back." She bowed before picking him up. "Inu-chan, you mustn't go anywhere without telling us!" she gently chided.
"Inu-chan! What did I tell you about going anywhere without telling Tsuki-chan?" his mother added.
"Not to, Kuro... But I wasn't lost, I was wiff you and Tadji!"
Izayoi sighed. "I know that, but Tsuki didn't and she was worried."
"Oh... Gomena, Tsuki-chan!" He hugged his foster mother and she set him down. "Where's Maru-chan? I want to play wiff him!" he cried and spotting his older brother, he took off towards the far end of the garden.
"He's looking for you, Inu-chan," Tsuki called out as she watched the three year old run towards where his brother was on his hands and knees, looking under the hydrangeas for him.
"Maru-chan! Let's go play!"
"There you are, you little runt!" Sesshomaru growled as he moved to face him. "I've been looking all over for you. Where the hell have you been?"
"Wiff Tadji and Kuro! And I talked to Kin-chan this morning and I had lunch wiff Tadji and Kuro! We ate lots of meat! Are you hungry, Maru-chan?"
"Are you tired? Kin-chan said Jouku-sama gets cranky when he doesn't sleep," Inuyasha said with all the seriousness only a three year old could muster.
Sesshomaru looked t him like he had three heads. "I see...and I'm not tired. I'm just angry I had to go look for you... again!"
"Gomena, Maru-chan... Ummm... wanna play swords wiff me?" Inuyasha smiled at him.
Sesshomaru sighed and rolled his eyes at his brother. He was half tempted to say "no" simply because he was annoyed he had wasted his time this morning, but he agreed only because he did not want to have to deal with a wailing hanyou and an angry father. "Alright..."
"Waa!!" Inuyasha cried in delight. "Let's go get the swords, Maru-chan!" Inuyasha tugged on his brother's hands as he tried to pull him to his feet. He had been waiting a week for this moment and he was anxious to get started.
"Hai..." Sesshomaru grumbled as he stood up and trailed after his brother.
"We gonna play swords, Tadji!" Inuyasha said as he ran past the adults and up the stairs leading to the veranda. He was inside their room by the time Sesshomaru had caught up to him. He found his younger brother sitting at the base of their tansu, waiting for him. Sesshomaru looked down at him and shook his head, before reaching for the two wooden practice swords he kept on top of it.
"Here you go, Runt," Sesshomaru said, handing the smaller of the two swords to Inuyasha.
"Arigatou, Maru-chan," Inuyasha said and Sesshomaru was pleased at how good he was at containing his excitement. "Let's go!"
Sesshomaru nodded and let his little brother lead the way. The walked over to the far end of the garden while the others made themselves comfortable on the veranda so that they could watch the brothers play. Kneeling behind to Inuyasha, Sesshomaru put his arm around him so that he could help Inuyasha get the feel of the sword. He showed his brother some basic moves as he moved his arm in the correct manner. Once he was satisfied that Inuyasha was not going to hurt either one of them, he started a mock battle. Sesshomaru laughed at Inuyasha's ferociousness, as the little hanyou was hell bent on "killing" him during their battle. Their battle raged up and down the far end of the garden. When he finally managed to poke Sesshomaru in the stomach with his sword, Inuyasha cried, "I killed you, Maru-chan!"
"That you did! Most impressive, little brother." Sesshomaru nodded in approval.
"Arigatou!" Inuyasha ran over to his parents. "Tadji! I killed Maru-chan!"
"Did you?" Inutaisho smiled at his younger son.
"Hai! It was fun playing swords wiff Maru-chan! Can we played it again?" he ran over to his brother.
"Tomorrow," Sesshomaru said as he came over and sat down.
"Hai..." Inuyasha said, following closely behind. He sat at his brother's feet, and leaning against his leg, Inuyasha had wrapped his arm around it. He was happily sucking his thumb while the adults quietly talked amongst themselves. Inuyasha could feel his eyelids drooping shut as he sat there, and he barely noticed he when he was lifted up and carried inside for a nap.
He woke up, a couple of hours later, curled up next to Sesshomaru who was snoring softly. Inuyasha giggled and put his finger on the tip of his brother's nose. Sesshomaru sneezed and twitched slightly in his sleep. The little hanyou giggled again and touched his brother's cheek. This time Sesshomaru growled softly in his sleep which Inuyasha found highly amusing. He waited for Sesshomaru to quiet down before he poked his cheek again. Sesshomaru's growling got louder and much to Inuyasha's delight he curled his upper lip up like an old dog's. Inuyasha was happily giggling again when Sesshomaru, who was finally awake, grabbed his brother's hand and pulled it towards him as he pretended to bite him. Inuyasha shrieked and Tsuki came running, although by the time she made it around the sleeping screen both brothers were laying there laughing.
"You two are impossible! I thought something had happened to Inuyasha, when I heard all that screaming!" she glared at them.
"Gomen nasai, Tsuki-chan," they chorused contritely, before looking at each other and laughing. Tsuki, who was half tempted to throw a floor pillow at them, smiled and shook her head at them.
"Time for your bath, Inu-chan," she said sweetly, "And you can take him for me, Maru-chan. Ningen-hime needs me to help her fix her hair."
"We'll wait. Dinner's not for a while yet."
"Gomen, but I've already had my bath while you were asleep. And don't worry, he'll behave." Tsuki kissed her mate, and picking up her foster son, she said, "You be a good little pup for your brother, Inu-chan."
"Hai!" Inuyasha wiggled around in her arms to face Sesshomaru. "Come, Maru-chan!"
Sesshomaru nodded, and taking his brother from his mate, they watched her leave, before getting ready for their baths. Sesshomaru carried Inuyasha over to the tansu and quickly changed him into his yukata. When he was finished dressing the squirmy three year old, Sesshomaru got ready as well. Taking his younger brother by the hand, they left through the outer shoji and headed out to the bathhouse.
The walk there was rather uneventful and Sesshomaru was glad his little brother was too busy sucking his thumb to engage in mindless chatter. They removed their sandals and entered the dimly lit bathhouse. Once inside, Sesshomaru helped Inuyasha out of his yukata and hung it up on one of the many pegs on the wall, where he quickly added his own. Grabbing a bucket, a tenugui, and a bag of rice bran, they walked over the bathing area and sat down on a low stool. Sesshomaru took a bucketful of water and poured it over Inuyasha's head, before rubbing him briskly all over with the little bag of rice bran.
"Sit there and wait for me," Sesshomaru said as he repeated the same actions on himself. When he was finished, he took the tenugeui and dipped the small towel into the pool of water at their feet. He rang it out, before rubbing it all over his brother and himself. Satisfied that they were clean, Sesshomaru led the little hanyou outside to soak in the onsen. He made Inuyasha wait until he got in and once he had settled in, Sesshomaru called Inuyasha over to him and set him on his lap. They sat there, soaking, until it looked like the warmth of the onsen was making Inuyasha sleepy.
"Time to go, little brother," Sesshomaru said. "It's almost dinner time."
"Hai..." Inuyasha said sleepily.
Sesshomaru carefully set him on the bank of the onsen, and climbed out. Taking his little brother's hand, Sesshomaru led him back inside the dark confines of the bathhouse where they dressed before heading back to their room. Since Inuyasha seemed rather subdued and half asleep, Sesshomaru figured it would be an easy matter to get him dressed for dinner. As they walked along the outer corridor Sesshomaru imagined Inuyasha getting ready for dinner with minimal fuss. Unfortunately, back in the room, Inuyasha woke up enough to refuse to cooperate.
The two brothers stared at each other for several long tense minutes, arms folded across their chests as they mirrored each other's actions. Sesshomaru was about to insist Inuyasha hurry up and get dressed when he decided to try a different tactic. Shrugging, he said calmly, "Fine. Then don't get dressed." He looked at Inuyasha. "I personally don't give a fire rat's ass whether you do or not, but don't be surprised if Chichi-ue sends you back here with no dinner if you don't." Having said all that he cared to on the matter, Sesshomaru ignored Inuyasha completely as he proceeded to get ready for dinner.
The little hanyou was dumbfounded by his brother's behavior. Inuyasha had discovered early on that his older brother had infinite patience when it came to most things, although, there were times when he could be goaded into a rare display of temper. Getting dressed or rather fussing over getting dressed was one of those times, except today Sesshomaru was not getting angry like he normally did. Inuyasha could not understand why. No matter what he did, from standing there naked to calmly handing Sesshomaru his obi, made the older youkai notice him. And when it looked like Sesshomaru was going to leave him behind, Inuyasha ran over to his open tansu and grabbed the first thing he could and struggled into it. It was only when Inuyasha asked Sesshomaru to tie his obi for him, that his brother finally took notice of him.
Kneeling behind Inuyasha, Sesshomaru quickly knotted his obi. "There you go. Ready?"
"Hai!" Inuyasha cried as they left their room for Inutaisho's private banquet hall. It was a small room that had a shoji that opened out onto a private garden. As the sun had set, the servants had come by and lit a few paper lanterns in the garden, casting a soft golden glow over the flowers and plants. The twinkling of fireflies and the hum of the late summer cicadas added to the magical air that hung about the place. It was the dog general's favorite spot to end the day with his family.
Inuyasha quietly entered with Sesshomaru and after they greeted everyone, he wormed his way between the dog queen and Sesshomaru and sat down much to everyone's surprise. He was on his best behavior, eating everything they placed on his plate while he told her about his day. Inukouhi smiled at him as she listened, for she was happy that she would spending the night with her husband, until Inuyasha told her he wanted to spend the night with her.
"Don't you want to stay with your own mother?" Inukouhi said sweetly, although she was seething inside, as she had felt Izayoi was somehow responsible for Inuyasha's wanting to spend time with her.
"Iie!! I want to stay wiff you. You let me eat dango when I want to," he said as if that explained everything.
"You do? So that explains it," Inutaisho chuckled. At his wife's questioning look, he added, "Whenever we tell him he has to eat first before having some dessert, he always wants to visit you."
"Oh, well I only gave him some a few times."
"That's because Gata-sama told me not to dig in her garden and if I was good, she'd gived me dango. So I was good!"
The dog queen laughed. "He was good, so I gave him a couple."
"And when I came back again, you gived me more so I would sit nicely." Inuyasha smiled at her. "I like visiting you. You very nice to me like Kin-chan."
Inukouhi nodded at Inuyasha as she smiled briefly at him, before turning her attention to her husband, who was having trouble containing his amusement.
"Inu-chan, I want you to come stay with me tonight, I miss you, my baby," Izayoi said softly.
"I played wiff you before, Kuro! And I want to play wiff Gata-sama now!"
"How about you come visit with me after dinner and I'll tell you a story and then you stay with your mother."
Inukouhi leaned over and whispered in his ear, "I'll give you some dango, but only if you behave, okay?"
"And you don't overstay your welcome."
Inuyasha nodded solemnly. He could not wait for dinner to be over so he could leave and get the promised treat. Unfortunately the adults seemed to take forever to eat and it was only the promise of dango that kept him on his best behavior. Soon his patience was rewarded and it was time to leave. He got up quietly and made his good byes and waited calmly while the dog queen made hers. Taking her by the hand, they left.
Inuyasha walked quietly with her through the maze of corridors, stopping and greeting politely everyone one they met, until they reached the outside corridors leading to here rooms. Inukouhi let go of his hand and the three year hanyou raced ahead only to stop and turn around to wait for her as if it were a game they were playing. Minutes later they arrived at her room and it was all Inuyasha could do to contain his excitement as they entered. He loved the dog queen's rooms in much the same way Sesshomaru did when he was younger, for in addition to her private garden, she had two rooms, a sitting room where she entertained her friends and a sleeping chamber, both of which opened out into her garden. It was her sleeping chamber that drew his attention, for instead of a simple screen separating her futon from the rest of the room, Inukouhi had silk panels surrounding her bed on all sides, giving it the appearance of a tent. Inuyasha sat there, happily munching on his dango, while every so often casting a longing gaze over there. He knew Sesshomaru had played there many times as he remembered his brother telling him stories about it, entertaining him one rainy afternoon, and after that Inuyasha made it a point to visit her as often as he could in the hope of being allowed to play there as well. The fact that she kept him well supplied with dango also helped, as he found the dog queen somewhat scary. When she was around others, the okugata-sama was fine, but when he visited her alone, he could feel the same waves of impatience coming off her as he did with Sesshomaru, although the dog queen's were more intense. But Inuyasha learned quickly enough that if he sat there quietly, she would soften, offering him some treats before telling him a story and sending him on his way.
"Did you have enough, or would you like one more?" Inukouhi asked.
"I had enough, arigatou, Gata-sama..."Inuyasha replied "Will you tell me a story? Please?"
"Hai, and after that you go." She stood and headed towards the shoji leading to her garden.
"Hai!" Inuyasha said as he got up and followed the dog queen outside.
They sat on the low veranda overlooking her garden, Inuyasha happily leaning against her as he sucked thumb.
Looking over at him, Inukouhi smiled as she was reminded of Sesshomaru at that age and as a result, she decided to tell Inuyasha one of her son's favorite stories.
"Have you heard the tale of Kaguya-hime?"
"Iie," Inuyasha said.
"Very well then, I shall tell it to you." She looked over at him and smiled. "Once upon a time there was this old woodcutter who was very poor and he lived in a little hut with his wife. One day he went out to a nearby bamboo forest and there he saw one of the large stalks glowing brightly. Taking his knife, he cut it and to his amazement, he found a tiny baby girl sleeping inside. Since he and his wife had no children, he took the baby home to raise her as their own. They named her Kaguya-hime, and every time the old woodcutter went into forest to cut bamboo, he always found a couple of gold coins which he used to feed his family.
"Very quickly the tiny baby grew into a beautiful woman and soon many princes came from all over to win her hand in marriage. But Kaguya-hime loved her adopted family so much, that she had no desire to leave them. So she thought up various impossible tasks to keep the princes busy and away from her and all but five noblemen soon grew tired of it. So she told those nobles to bring her a gift. Since these gifts couldn't be found anywhere in the land, they all gave up like the others had and soon Kaguya-hime was living peacefully with her foster parents. Not even the emperor could win her heart."
"Really...?" Inuyasha asked sleepily.
"Hai... And after a while Kaguya-hime began to cry whenever the moon shone brightly in the sky. So the old woodcutter, who hated to see his foster daughter so sad, asked her what was wrong. She told him that she was really from the moon and that one day she must return. But because she loved her foster family so much, Kaguya-hime wanted to remain with them. And so the emperor who was still in love with her, helped the old woodcutter and his wife, lock the Kaguya-hime in a little hut where he set his guards to watch over her. Inside the hut, Kaguya-hime started crying and she spent the time writing letters to her family and the emperor, leaving behind a special gift so that they would never forget her. Unfortunately, the guards become frightened when they see the celestial maidens coming for the princess that they flee, leaving her unguarded. In that moment, they enter the hut and place a beautiful cloak of feathers on her shoulders and poor Kaguya-hime forgets her family and the emperor and goes off with them back to the moon. Sadly, her foster parents die of grief and the emperor who is also sad orders his men to take a letter to the wisteria mountain and burn it so that the ashes would carry in the wind to the moon." The dog queen looked down at Inuyasha, and was surprised to see him fast asleep. "The end..." she murmured softly.
She called out to her handmaiden, who waited discretely inside, and word was sent to Sesshomaru to come and get his brother, as well as to her husband that she was ready for him. While she waited for the two men who were the most important to her to arrive, Inukouhi let her thoughts drift to memories her son when he was a little pup.
"Haha-ue...?" Sesshomaru said softly as he came over to her and kissed her cheek.
"Your brother's asleep. You had better take back as your father is due to arrive any minute now."
"Hai... You know, I think he really wanted to stay here with you."
She nodded. "I know, but he can't."
"Is it because he's hanyou or not your pup?"
"Iie...The reason he can't stay, Sessho-kun, is because your father wishes to spend time with me tonight. Any other night..."
"Would be fine for you to curry favor with Chichi-ue..." He smiled ruefully at his mother as she waved her hand at him. "Perhaps one day he can stay with you, ne?"
"Perhaps, but tonight is not the night, Sesshomaru. Now go as I need to get ready."
"Goodnight, Haha-ue..." Sesshomaru kissed his mother.
Gathering his sleeping brother in his arms, Sesshomaru stood and left as quietly as he came, leaving the dog queen alone with her thoughts. He walked through the halls of the women's quarters, eager to get back to Tsuki when he met up with his father and Izayoi. After exchanging greetings, Sesshomaru was more than happy to bring Inuyasha to her rooms, where he woke the next morning wondering how he got there...