There are times in a person’s life when “embarrassed” simply does not begin to encompass a situation; this was one of those times. Kagome lay face down on the floor, her bra up off her breasts, her naked skin being chilled by the air, and wished nothing more than anything to stay there forever. The men in the room had other ideas.
“Kagome…” She didn’t even need to see Inuyasha to know he was curling and uncurling his fingers with pent up rage. Kagome tensed at the sound of Nataseria shifting his weight. The sound of Nataseria letting out a snarl that was nothing close to being human acted like a rope being jerked in Kagome; she shot into a kneeling position. Her eyes darted back and forth wildly between the two men. The sound of Inuyasha’s sharp intake of breath stayed her eyes on the half demon. Their eyes met. Then his eyes widened almost imperceptibly. Kagome’s eyes darted down to her appearance. Her eyes widened almost imperceptibly. Nataseria, seeing the look on the intruding half-demon’s face, turned to look at Kagome. Within a second, he had swooped down and wrapped her in a half-hazarded hug. For a moment she was too shocked to do anything; he had just turned his back on a rival male to protect modesty. So she rested her head on his shoulder, and was in the process of opening her mouth to speak when the feeling of his fingers on her back stilled her. She raised an eyebrow sardonically at the feeling of Nataseria putting her bra back into its proper place. Looking back, that probably wasn’t the best expression to make.
Inuyasha, taking in Kagome’s expression, took three menacing steps foreword.
“Stop.” Kagome’s voice rang out flatly in the small room. “Inuyasha, you broke into my house. You were not invited. You have no right to be here.” Kagome’s throat hurt from the effort of making her voice sound that harsh. When Inuyasha’s face went blank, Kagome softened a little.
“Inuyasha” she continued “you have no right to be angry”. Kagome withheld a smile when she felt Nataseria let out a silent sigh of relief and bury his face in her shoulder. When his arms tightened around her she had to resist the temptation to kiss the side of his head. That would not help the situation at all. She dragged her eyes back Inuyahsa’s. When he didn’t say anything, Kagome sighed.
“I assume there is a good reason you came?” Kagome cut him off before he could speak, “I hope there is”. She never took her eyes off his; there was no way in hell she would make this easer. As the silence stretched on, she felt Nataseria tense against her. For about a second she was torn between making Inuyasha hurt more and comforting the man wrapped around her. If you have to pause when you decided on either hurting someone or helping someone else, you have your answer. Kagome dropped eye contact and gently rubbed her head against Nataseria’s. “Don’t beat him up. I want to do it” she whispered into the silk of his hair. She was rewarded by the tension in his muscles dissipating and his lips pressing a kiss to her shoulder.
Kagome turned her eyes back to Inuyasha. “Well?” Inuyasha took a deep breath before speaking. “I have pictures from one of the scenes that you need to see.” When Kagome simply leveled a glare at him, Inuyasha’s fingers curled into fists.
“What!” he demanded sharply. Kagome sighed and wrapped her arms around Nataseria. “Inuyasha you interrupted us, and unless you thought I was loosing a wrestling match-“ Kagome was cut off by the sound of Nataseria‘s amused snort. “ -there had better be a good reason.” In reply, Inuyasha simply raised his head defiantly. Kagome felt something snap. The anger she had so tightly controlled seeped out of its cage and filled her up. She slowly let her arms fall down before gently tugging her way out of Nataseria’s grasp. She leaned back far enough so that she could meet his eyes. She took a fortifying breath. “Do you trust me?”. Kagome felt her heart stutter when the expression on Nataseria’s face went from curiosity to fear. She deliberately kept her eyes on his, letting him search her face.
Nataseria took a deep breath, “ I’ll trust you far as I can”. Kagome smiled and kissed him gently. He knew something was up, and yet he still tried. He continued to have faith in her. “ Then, would you please… please leave for at least five minutes?” She saw him tense as if someone had taken a bat to his head. Before he could answer, she cut him off. “He wont touch me. He won’t come any closer to me. He will leave when I ask him to leave.” As she spoke, her eyes traveled up to Inuyasha’s. She was forced to end the stare down when Nataseria placed his hand on her jaw and gently turned her head towards him.
“Kagome…” Something in her face stilled him. Kagome leaned into his hand, trying to comfort him with touch. “Kagome… I’ll try.” Kagome quickly shook his hand off and leaned foreword to snatch another quick kiss. “Thank you” she whispered against his lips.
Nataseria felt like someone had taken his heart in their hand and was slowly squeezing it motionless. His instincts were screaming, and more than that, his heart hurt. He looked at Kagome’s face. He could see her trying to communicate with him. Trying to will him into trusting her. Her eyes drifted back to the demon- Inuyasha. He felt some of the pressure lift when here eyes hardened and her voice took on a steel quality. The whispered “thank you” was what did him in. She understood how hard this was for him. He slowly levered himself up off the floor, joint complaining because of the tension throughout his body. He looked down at Kagome. She flashed him thankful eyes and blew his a kiss. Nataseria slowly turned on his heel and walked out the remains of the door. Before he had even taken more than two steps, Kagome’s voice cut through the air. “Inuyasha, give him your keys.” There was long silence before a pair of keys flew over his shoulder to land on the lawn. He had to stop himself from turning around and beating the shit of the ass. As he was unlocking Inuyasha’s car, its owner’s voice floated to his ears.
“So that’s what does it for you? Wimpy ass guys who don’t even have the nerve to stand and fight? Nataseria turned swoly and started walking slowly back towards the house. His foot steps stilled at the sound of Kagome’s voice.
“Inuyasha it’s called caring about someone other than yourself. You think its weakness that allows him to walk out and leave us? I know you couldn’t that. Just because he isn’t a chauvinistic, arrogant, apathetic, asshole doesn’t mean that he’s “wimpy”. It means that he is a better person than you could dream of being”. Nataseria turned around and walked back to the car.
Nataseria pulled into the drive eight minutes later; Kagome had asked for five. That was as generous as he was likely to get. He didn’t even bother to lock it as he exited with his grocery bag. The door was still lying on the floor. He stopped dead upon entering. Inuyasha was gone, and Kagome was anywhere in sight. For a moment, time slowed and his heart slowed with it. ‘She- they… she’s gone with him!’ His thoughts sounded loud and ugly inside his head. Suddenly, he heard a sound from further back in the house. He followed it to the bedroom, the door was ajar. His ugly thought didn’t even have time to multiply because the room contained only Kagome. She was facing him, clutching a teddy bear. His mind went blank. Her face was red and blotchy from crying. She was shaking, and her eyes looked to big for here face. After a long tense moment, she dropped the teddy bear and held out her arms. He dropped the bag and came to her. Kagome wrapped her arms around him like he was the only thing left in the world. He curled his arms around her, and within seconds he could feel the hot drip of tears on his chest. Before he could open his mouth, Kagome jumped and wrapped her legs around his waist. The unexpected weight would have staggered a normal person, but Nataseria just tightened his grip and buried his face in her hair. He quelled his need for answers and simply held her.
They ended up on floor. With Nataseria leaning against the bed and Kagome sprawled in his lap. Kagome was the first to break the silence.
“ There really isn’t to much that is important about our conversation. The important thing is that I told him I was going to quit. I told him I was no longer going to help with the murders.” Kagome felt Nataseria’s arms tighten involuntarily around her.
“You’re quitting?” Nataseria’s voice sounded strangled. Kagome leaned back against his chest and shook her head. “I could never quit, not knowing that there was some monster running loose killing people. Not knowing that I could be helping to catch him.” Kagome lifted her head to give his neck a quick kiss. “ I figure if I go to Kouga and tell I’m quitting because of Inuyasha, he’ll see to it that Inuyasha won’t come sniffing around again.” When he didn’t say anything, Kagome sighed. “Nataseria, I made it clear to Inuyasha before this that I didn’t want him around. Only he knows why he did that.” When he still didn’t answer Kagome sat up and turned to face him. “Nataseria please-“ Her voice cracked. Before she could continue Nataseria pressed his lips to hers.
“I’ll be okay Kagome, really.” Kagome smiled.
“I don’t deserve you.”
Asshe stood alone in Kouga’s cold elevator, Kagome took a deep breath. This was it. After she and Nataseria had cleaned up she decided to go ahead tell Kouga that she was “quitting” before Inuyasha got the chance to. After making a few calls, she discovered that Kouga was in his building. They both decided that Nataseria should sit this one out. So Kagome was in the elevator alone. Alone wither her ugly little thoughts that told her this would never work. Thoughts that told Nataseria was going to leave her and- the elevator door opened cutting off anything her nasty subconscious was going to say. She stepped out into the familiar lobby. She walked over to the secretary’s desk
“Excuse me, do you know where Kouga is?” She secretary smiled politely and told her that he was in the lounge. ‘Good, the more people to see this, the better’ Kagome thought as she headed for the lounge. As she walked along the corridor, she steeled herself. This needed to be big, loud, and angry. She could do that. She stopped in front of the lounge door and took another deep breath. Then she busted in. “Busted” was not an exaggeration. Kagome ignored the startled glances and honed in on Kouga. He had been sprawled out on a huge floor cushion towards the back of the room. Now he was sitting ramrod straight on a huge floor cushion towards the back of the room.
“Kagome-“ Kouga didn’t have a chance to say anything more before Kagome was storming across the room. She stopped a few feet from him, legs hip-width apart and hands on her hips.
“I quit. Find yourself another miko.” With that said, Kagome spun on her heel. She made sure to walk slow enough this time that Kouga would have time to answer before she exited.
“Kagome! Kagome what happened?” she had to keep her eyebrows from shooting up, Kouga’s voice was just behind her. She spun around, and had to stop herself hitting his chest. “What happened? WHAT HAPPENED?” Kagome let her voice crack for effect. “If you want to know so badly, ask Inuyasha”. She didn’t give Kouga time to respond before she walked out of the room.
Kagome stopped in the middle of the lobby and took a deep breath. She closed her eyes concentrated on her breathing. The secretary could think whatever she wanted. She opened her eyes when she felt her heart stop trying to force its way out of her body. She smiled reassuringly at the confused secretary before walking to the elevator and pushing the “down” button. The elevator opened and Kagome almost collided with Shippo on his way out.
“Oh, Kagome! This is great. Rosemary, this is Kagome. Kagome this is Rosemary, my mate!” Words died on Kagome’s lips. The brunette standing as Shippo’s side seemed to be in the same boat. Shippo’s mate was a by-product of a different time. A time when curves were appreciated. Kagome’s eyes swept enviously Rosemary’s perfect hourglass figure and rich curling hair. The woman was shorter than Kagome’s 5’5, but she wore her height and her curves with elegance. Kagome was at a complete loss of what to do. Rosemary’s bright green eyes crinkled good-naturedly as she held out her hand.
“It’s good to finally meet you. Ever since you re-surfaced, Shippo has been on cloud nine. Due to his talking, I feel like I’ve known you for years.” Her voice was low, a bedroom voice. Kagome gingerly shook hands, not knowing what to say.
“Well, I’m just relived someone managed catch him and keep him. I always had the sneaking suspicion that he would grow up to be a lady killer.” At Kagome’s words, something surprisingly close to a blush crept up Shippo’s cheeks. Rosemary simply laughed. Kagome, seeing the blush pressed on.
“Well, am I right? Did you have to teach him a lesson or two in humility?” Kagome grinned when Shippo could only let out a surprised croak. Rosemary grinned widely. “Yes I did, several in fact. Not that I didn’t enjoy it.” To punctuate her words Rosemary leaned over to plant a kiss on Shippo’s cheek. The Kistine was simply at a loss for words. Rosemary forged ahead, probably giving her poor mate time to recover.
“Kagome, would you like to come over for dinner? Meet the kids?” Later Kagome would congratulate herself for not stuttering out “k-kids?”.
“Of course I would”.