Categories > Anime/Manga > Inuyasha > This Can't Be Good

The Master at Work

by Ithilwen 0 reviews

He meets Miroku. Enough said.

Category: Inuyasha - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Action/Adventure, Humor, Romance - Characters: Other - Warnings: [!] - Published: 2005-11-22 - Updated: 2005-11-22 - 1725 words

I don't own Inuyasha, but in the interests of relieving stress during finals week, I've been thinking of leasing Youko Kurama from Yoshihiro Togashi.

KURAMA: (Looks up) What?

"Kagome! Kagome's back! Kagome!"

"Shippo, slow down!" Miroku held up one hand as the kitsune zoomed out of sight. He shook his head, feeling his lips pull back in an unmonkly smirk. Perhaps Inuyasha had more of an influence on Shippo than either of them would care to admit: There was no talking to the young fox demon once he'd gotten himself worked up. He shifted grip on his staff and followed. From what he could hear - the kitsune's quick footsteps, and a light, female "oof!" which was surely the result of Shippo barreling straight into Kagome's stomach - they weren't too far ahead.

"Why were you gone so long ?" Miroku heard Shippo demand, "What did you bring me? Did Inuyasha do something to make you mad? How long will you stay this time? Did you bring me anything?" Miroku allowed himself a smile as he moved calmly toward the sound, flashes of color starting to show through the trees. "Why were you gone so long?" Shippo asked again. "I bet it was dog boy's fault!" Miroku heard a faint popping sound that usually accompanied one of the fox demon's transformations.

"Get off, brat!" Inuyasha was scolding. Miroku noted oddly that he sounded a bit more sour than usual. He frowned. Kagome had been gone this long before without irritating Inuyasha so. What news could she have brought to anger him?
Would she have to leave again soon? Had her supply of ramen run dry?

"Shippo!" Kagome joined in, "Stop chewing Inuyasha's head this minute!"

Miroku brought a hand to his mouth, even though there was no one to see the grin.

"...Higurashi?" came a strange voice, tight and alive with apprehension. "What..." The volume dropped. Whoever was speaking was obviously very disturbed by something, "...what is [i]that[/i]?"

What was what? Miroku wondered as he stepped into view.

The monk immediately formed an idea of what had upset Inuyasha.

The human boy was too skinny to be a warrior, and the way his knuckles had grown white on the strap of Kagome's school bag would seem to support that. His clothes were of some unknown make, and his short hair was cut just a little too evenly.

Kagome had never spoken of the boy from her time except in the lightest of passing. Inuyasha, however...

By now, Shippo had climbed up to Kagome's shoulder and pushed her hair aside to get a better look at the newcomer. "Who's that, Kagome?" he asked. His little nose twitched, "He smells funny."

The young man looked a bit taken aback by this.

"Miroku-sama, Shippo-chan," Kagome plucked the kitsune cub off her shoulder and turned around, setting him on the ground by a pair of strange shoes. Miroku craned his neck as she bent down, but Kagome had grown far too careful with those short skirts of hers, "this is Hojo-kun."

[i]Ah... [/i] Miroku hadn't really thought that "stupid runt of a human," had been his actual name.

"He's a friend of mine from my school." The human's big eyes went bigger as Shippo looked up at him. Miroku realized oddly that Hojo hadn't looked away from the little fox demon since he'd shown up. "And Hojo, when Shippo says that you smell funny, he means-"

"-that you reek of the metal demons from that world of yours," finished a snide voice.

"Inuyasha!" Kagome scolded. "Don't be rude."

Shippo grinned, "Yeah, Inuyasha, don't be rude," he folded his arms and hopped forward to get a better look at Hojo.

"Well he does!" Inuyasha was insisting. "And so do you for that matter. I should go throw you in the river."

"Oooooh! Inuyasha, don't make me say it!"

"Just ignore them," Miroku told Hojo.

"Is ..." Hojo swallowed hard, making eye contact with the monk. "Is Inuyasha always like this?"

"All the time," Shippo leaned in to take another sniff at Hojo, who gulped again.

Miroku stifled the urge to frown, trying hard to process the situation. Hojo didn't seemed to be alarmed by Inuyasha, the violent badass with the big sword, but something about Shippo was scaring the smoothly-creased pants off of him.
True, Shippo was a true demon while Inuyasha was only half, but...

He shook it off. Perhaps Hojo had been more frightened of Inuyasha earlier on, and was simply quick to grow accustomed to him. There were so many other things to wonder about this person.
For instance-

"Hojo!" Kagome was calling. "Hurry up! We're almost there!"

"Coming, Higurashi!" the boy answered, stepping carefully around Shippo to catch up with the girl.

Miroku neither quickened nor slowed, and soon found himself walking next to an extremely disgruntled-looking dog demon.

"He doesn't seem so bad."

Inuyasha grunted. "Something about him just ticks me off, okay?" the dog demon's tone could have soured milk.

Miroku nodded easily, "I have to say though, Inuyasha," he said, "I'm surprised."

"At what?" he snapped.

"Well," Miroku spread his hands, "he doesn't seem anywhere near as ugly as a three-headed toad."

"Shut up, Miroku."

"Yeah," chimed Shippo, "and he doesn't smell like gutted pig demon either."

"What was it about this boy that offended you, again?"

"Shut up, Miroku!"

"Well, Miroku-sama," Hojo closed the book he'd been reading, "there are a couple of different stories. No one's really sure."

Sango looked up from polishing hiraikotsu, suddenly wishing she'd caught the beginning of this conversation.

The monk was nodding thoughtfully. She rolled her eyes. He was up to something.

The young man from the well had been leaning against the outer wall of Kaede's house, one of Kagome's books in hand. There had barely been time for more than a quick introduction before Inuyasha had - quite insistently, oddly - dragged Kagome off to go look for Kaede.

"I mean," Hojo admitted, "it is a bit unusual..."

The priest nodded again. "It rarely fails to attract attention, often the wrong kind."

Sango's hands grew still on hiraikotsu. What could they be talking about?

"No! I mean even in our-Even in Tokyo."

"Really... So how did it come to be?"

"Well," Hojo went on, "I once heard a story that the last time that our school got new ones, a boy broke into the headmaster's office, found where the order form read, 'Girls' skirts must be six inches below the knee,' and wrote in 'above,' instead."

"An 'order form,' you say?" the monk paused.
Sango blinked. Was[i] that [/i]why Kagome had to wear that ridiculous short thing? She shook her head. It actually sounded as if the priest approved, though that was hardly surprising.

Hojo nodded. "That's like a contract for the people who make the clothes for the school. I guess all the girls just got used to wearing them that way," Hojo flipped the book open again, smiling innocently. So odd, that smile. The boy from Kagome's homeland had such an open face, as if the world weren't full of demons and loss...

The monk looked about to drift back into thought - or more likely, something less honorable and much more imaginative - when Hojo looked up and spoke again, "But that's probably an urban legend."

"Really? Just a story?"

Hojo nodded. "Well, it [i]might [/i]be true," he admitted, "but why believe it when there's a far simpler explanation?"

"Go on," urged the priest.

Hojo shrugged, "We probably just had some perverted lech for a headmaster that year."

Sango felt herself make a high-pitched sound, and reached up to cover her mouth with one hand.
And the monk didn't so much as bat an eye.

"Some of the girls at our school are as young as twelve or thirteen," Hojo shook his head. "And even on the older ones, it's hardly decent. That guy must've been a real sicko."

The priest closed his eyes in resignation, "And to think such men exist even in a more peaceful age..."

And with a straight face! Sango didn't know whether to laugh or fracture his skull for him. If Kagome could hear this!

"Miss Sango?" Hojo was saying, "Miss Sango, are you alright?"

She nodded vigorously, not trusting herself to speak.

Hojo turned back to the monk, "The some poor girl's skirt flips up while she's running to get to class on time - who'd find that sort of thing alluring, really?"

"It pains me to think it."

It was too much. Through her hand, Sango couldn't stop a giggle.

"Something wrong?" asked Hojo.

"Sango!" the monk cut in a scolding tone, "it's hardly kind to laugh at the misfortunes of Kagome's schoolmates!"

"What? Houshi-sama-"

He shook his head, "I had thought you a more compassionate girl than that."

He had- But he- Oooooooh!!

Sango felt her knuckles go white.

"You and I must have a talk," the monk went on. "Perhaps we can purge your mind of these uncharitable impulses." He put one sealed hand to his chin, "Somewhere private, I think. Where the sounds of our conversation will not alarm any passers-by..."

Sango's thoughts suddenly became very very uncharitable. With a speed born of frequent practice, she'd hefted hiraikotsu and braced her weight to jump to her feet.

"That's kind of you, Miroku-sama," Hojo said brightly, stepping in between the two of them, "but I really don't think Sango meant it that way. People laugh at all sorts of things..."

"Perhaps you are right, Hojo," said the monk, stepping to the side.

Sango managed not to grumble as she lowered her weapon. The boy had a point: there was no sense cracking the stupid monk's skull before he'd really earned a-

She tensed, gaze going from his outstretched hand to his face and back.

Her eyes narrowed into her best "don't even try it."

The monk withdrew, and turned back to Kagome's guest.

Sango picked up her polishing rag and went back to work.

The nerve of him! Trying to make her look wicked in front of a stranger.

...a stranger with such a nice smile.
KURAMA: This wasn't in my contract.
Just shut up and get in the notebook.

KURAMA: Sold without my consent. This is so degrading. (Leans over at reciept) how much did you have to pay for me, anyway?
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