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

(35) Advice

by Ithilwen 0 reviews

Sesshoumaru and Hojo have a little chat. (sigh) A month of work, and this chapter's still not of the best quality, but for those of you who like that sort of thing, the Kurama arc rocks.

Category: Inuyasha - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Action/Adventure, Humor, Romance - Characters: Other - Published: 2005-11-22 - Updated: 2005-11-23 - 3370 words

KURAMA: I am extremely pleased to interrupt your regularly scheduled Kurama arc. Since it means that the fan-author will not be devising a new trial or torment for me to endure at the hands of her narrator alter-ego, I am delighted to introduce reader interaction week.

We have a request.


KURAMA: Do the math.

Yeah! Do the freakin' math!

KURAMA: In addition, it seems that many of the readers were wondering why it took quite so long to update after chapter thirty-three. My "hostess" will now explain why.

Not exactly.

KURAMA: What? I thought you were going to tell everyone why chapters thirty-four and thirty-five are so late.

I thought it would be better expressed through dance.

KURAMA: You ...wait. You what?

(A chorale tour jetes onto the stage to the sound of Sondheim's, /Hey Look; Ithilwen Posted Chapter 32./)

(The tempo ups as the music changes to an excerpt from Copeland's, "Appalachian Spring," entitled, /Oh Crud; It's Kikyo./)

(Ith joins the chorale onstage as they dance out their reactions to chapters 32 and 33 using feather boas, spiky shoulder-grips and face painting. This is all done to minimalist composer Philip Glass' /Sesshoumaru on the Beach./)

(A disco ball descends from the ceiling)

KURAMA: The sad thing is that you thought this would be a good idea.

(Ith and the chorale do a cheesily choreographed version of, /Got to Give the People What They Want./)

Time for my angsty solo.

(Ith acts out indecision to the sounds of Wagner's, But What the Crud Is Sesshoumaru Doing Out There Anyway He Doesn't Want Tetsusaiga Anymore And He Doesn't Want the Jewel Shards And He Doesn't Have a Girlfriend For Hojo to Charm, (Excerpt from /Tristan und Isolde/).

(The dance ends with a triumphant interpretation of /Lookin' for Naraku (In All the Wrong Places)/.



Pathetic. As if the beast had not brought enough shame on the bloodline. There was no strength to be found in humans, even half-humans.

From the beginning, Inuyasha had allowed his weaker blood to permeate his scent and sentience, emulating their great father only in mockery. He coveted jewels, like a human miser. He had sought blood and battle, like a weak specter born of superstition and peasant sweat.

And all it had taken to goad out his anger was the suggestion that the girl might leave him for a commoner. The ignorant beast concerned himself with the flighty affections of a mindless human, and appeared to covet her attention like a pearl beyond price.

A hint of green formed on the flawless nails as Sesshoumaru's teeth clenched in his jaw.

Need he remind me that he is the son of my father?

Dilution could come in many ways. Inuyasha's blood had curdled in mortality, and the tribal wolves had lost their strength with the slow stilling of the human wars. Mortals no longer feared the tusks in the clouds, no longer knew that the dog at the door could eat them whole.

I spent years seeking the Tetsusaiga, so that its power might make me the equal of my great father. I am less than he was, for all that my line is pure. And when chaos came no more, what would become of the race of great demons? Not even human fear could be eternal.

The world was going to end.

Sesshoumaru looked the thought in the face, and then turned his mind back to Inuyasha.

The fool had not even had the courtesy to be useful, though this did explain why Naraku's fetid trail had given off a feminine air. The wind sorceress... Sesshoumaru's thoughts laced.

Naraku's most powerful slave had come to the demon lord seeking an alliance. She had suggested that he slay her master, and for what? There was nothing that she could possibly offer him, she with her false-elegant charms, her brazen demands, her bright eyes a perfect red against the polished night. She was impudent, and the only being alive who had ever looked on him without a hint of fear.

Not long after that, her scent had disappeared from the world for several weeks, coming forth again only once it had gained an air of rusted iron and desperation.

Some time after that, Rin had been kidnapped. There had been no mistaking the wind demon's scent in the matter. I should have known nothing but rage at that moment, the dog demon allowed himself to acknowledge. And yet I blame only Naraku.

And so he hunted the half-demon, but not because she had asked him to. He hunted would slay Naraku, but not because he gave even a thought to what pleased her. He would tear that foul life from the world, but not because he wished to set a noble creature free.

But first, there was Naraku's trail to find, and before the first, there was Rin. He hadn't left her far from here. He-

"No matter where the princess went, the changeling was right behind, tripping her when she walked, and breaking whatever she touched..."

The demon's eyes narrowed. There was human scent here, and not all of it Rin's. He paused to listen.

Rin let out a tiny cry, and Sesshoumaru appeared behind her, in the shadows. "Did it pull her hair, Mr. Hojo?"

"It sure did!"

Rin seemed unharmed, and not truly frightened. The demon set implacable gold eyes on her vacant-eyed storyteller. He appeared to be one of the mindless zombie eunuchs who were enslaved to the eel demons of- Sesshoumaru sniffed again. No, it was just a human.

"What happened next?" Rin begged.

"What do you think happened?"

"I know," the girl laughed, "but I'm not telling."

"Well!" the stranger continued. "How about I tell the rest of the story, and you can tell me if I got it right."


Sesshoumaru stepped into view. The tufty-haired human had a disturbingly vacant smile, and wide-open eyes that he dared set on a demon lord.

The whelp beamed up at him. "Who's this, Rin?" he asked.

Rin laughed. "I'm not telling!"

The human laughed back. "Okay, then. Not even a hint? Is he that Lord Jaken guy you were talking about?"

"What are you doing here?" Sesshoumaru asked without preamble.

"I'm telling Rin a story," the human answered plainly, "and I'm waiting for someone." The short-haired boy looked him over from head to foot. "Hey..." he said stupidly. "You're a demon, aren't you?"

"I am."

"I thought so!" the boy beamed. "Maybe you could tell me, then: Have you ever heard of a demon named 'Sesshoumaru'?"

Rin giggled, hiding her mouth with one hand.

The white-haired specter answered with an icy stare and no more.

"Oh!" the human cringed. "I'm sorry, Rin. I'm supposed to call him 'Lord Sesshoumaru,' aren't I?"

As if a human could have the audacity to speak that name at all.

"Well," prattled the oblivious human, "all that I know about him he takes care of Rin here," he shot the girl a witless grin, "and that he's the older brother of this guy I know, Inuyasha."

Sesshoumaru paused.

"I have no idea what to expect," he continued stupidly. "My friend Miroku ran off to find Miss Sango before I could ask what this Sesshoumaru person looks like."


The boy nodded, "But he's Inuyasha's brother, so he probably has funny ears, nasty teeth, and a sort of," he curved his fingers, as if holding and invisible melon, "wide, fat-looking head." The human shifted, placing his elbows on his dusty knees in a pose that Sesshoumaru could only assume was meant to be conversational. "I have to tell you, though, I'm not expecting much." Sesshoumaru blinked at the human's confession. "I mean, Miroku seemed rattled enough, and if Sesshoumaru is anything like his brother, then he's a great fighter;" the human's face soured as he stared into the dust, "but also a bully and a loudmouth."

Sesshoumaru's eyes narrowed. Melting this fool with his poison-flower-claw would upset Rin, so perhaps the energy whip...

The human looked up, "I don't like to say bad things about people, especially behind their backs, but that's what Inuyasha is. He's a big bully who doesn't know what he..." the human's weak throat closed. "But I shouldn't hold that against the other guy, I guess. I mean..." a respectable dose of venom dripped from his voice and his pink hands tightened into fists, "It's not like this 'Sesshoumaru' stole my girlfriend or anything."


Inuyasha closed his hand around Kagome's warm fingers. He didn't look at Kouga. Oh he'd have loved watching the thunderclouds form on that ugly wolfish mug as Kagome started to blush, but deep down, he knew that sneering at Kouga meant challenging Kouga, and the whole point was that there was nothing the fuck to challenge him about.

...and it wasn't like watching Kagome blush was so scarring.

"We had better find the others Kagome," he said quietly, still well within a wolf demon's hearing. "Let's go."

Do what I tell you, Kagome. Show him that you're mine, Kagome.

Kagome nodded, her face still a little white. "I wouldn't want Sesshoumaru to catch any of them alone. We should get moving again."

Inuyasha smiled, only half in relief. She'd be mad as hell if she knew what he'd been thinking, but this was about making Kouga get the point and stop trying to take her away from where she belonged. This was the way things were, and if Kouga thought otherwise, then he'd have to do the challenging. Then Inuyasha would promptly hand him his very badly beaten ass, and the matter would be done.

"Wait for me!" Shippo scampered toward Kagome, climbing up the girl's body until he was perched on her shoulder. Inuyasha stifled a scowl. He'd wanted to lead Kagome away by the hand. Kouga wasn't the sharpest claw in the den, and he really didn't want the stupid fuck to miss the point. Inuyasha could just tell the runt to scram, but then Kagome would get in his face about being mean to Shippo, and he didn't need for Kouga to see that.

Kouga was growling audibly by now. Kagome frowned and began to turn her head, but Inuyasha gave her fingers another careful squeeze.

Inuyasha fought down a smirk when she turned her confused eyes on him instead of the wolf turd, but he forced a regular smile instead. Kagome's lips tugged back tentatively. "I think Sango went that way," she said.

The dog demon smiled back, still not managing to make the move look natural.

Fuck. I'm not cut out for this subtlety shit, /Inuyasha admitted. /But the wolf turd seems to be paying attention, unlike all of the times I ground his stinking head into the dust... Although his entire body bristled at the idea, Inuyasha turned his back toward Kouga, tugging Kagome along with him. He swallowed his unwelcome nervousness as his confidence grew, and tried to tune out the way the girl's bow-calloused fingers felt against his skin. Very deliberately, he released her near hand, placing his palm against the opposite side of her waist, pulling her close, so that his arm banded diagonally across her back.

Inuyasha was so tuned in to Kouga's reaction, that he barely noticed the shadow pass behind Kagome's eyes.

"Kagome!" Kouga shouted angrily, stomping up behind them. "I can see that your friends need protection from the dog demon," he clipped pointedly, to Inuyasha's faint snarl, "but I will go with you."

"Kouga," she answered with an unusual calmness. "We'll be back on the road in a minute. Why don't you go find Miroku?"

"I'm not leaving you alone with him, Kagome!" Kouga rasped.

Inuyasha snapped in a breath to shout back, but Kagome spoke first, "It's all right, Kouga," she said with a disturbingly even smile. "Inuyasha's not going to hurt me. And he and I have something to talk about in private, anyway."


"And then he called her a stupid human wench!" the boy exclaimed. "At least she stood up to him that time, though. She said that word thing and he hit the dirt like a sack of bricks."

"Continue," the dog demon urged.

"Well, there was another time when she yelled at him for picking a fight with Kouga," he shook his head. "She got all three of them, then. She sent Inuyasha into the dirt, slapped Kouga in the ear, and even gave Miroku a good swat."

The young demon lord smiled inwardly, imagining the foolish beasts and the wolf demon in such a predicament. "I wish I had seen it for myself."

"Yeah," the creature's empty head bobbed. "I have to wonder, though. What is it about me that she doesn't like?" he half-exclaimed. "I'm not mean enough? I don't call her bad names or boss her around all the time?" the human waved both pink hands in the air. "I don't like to boast, but I'm not such a bad guy. I've done nothing but treat her right since the day I met her. I don't get it!"

Sesshoumaru could not explain why he had suffered the creature to bleat at him so - aside from the fact that he kept relating stories about his brother being made the fool that he was - but still the grubby humanling breathed the air and whimpered it back out again. He found the words slipping from his impassive lips. "You wish to know why the human girl did not become yours."

"Yes," the human nodded his head decisively. "I guess I do. Do you think you know?"

The dog demon felt his eyes narrow at the insult, but for some reason, he continued. "She does not choose you because you are weak. You can neither give her what she wants nor protect her from those who would do her harm." A smirk graced his lips. "Not that Inuyasha could accomplish either of those things."

The boy started to get to his feet. "Now wait just a-"

Sesshoumaru held up a hand. ...which, he noticed, still gleamed with poison. "You wished to know why, and that is why."

"Higurashi's not like that!"

Sesshoumaru gave the boy a cold glare. "All beings respect strength, and even the half-demon son of a human sow is higher than you are in that respect"

"People don't love because they have something to gain!" the lower being blathered on.

The demon lord paused. Yes... There were such creatures in the world. His eyes fell on Rin, patiently watching them. A bamboo water container and a tiny gift of fish rose in his mind. All beings were drawn to strength, but some of them could still give and expect nothing back. Sesshoumaru turned his gaze to the disheartened boy before him. Yes, there were such things in the world.

But for the rest, affection could be bought and traded, one more card to play when the weak sought protection from those greater than themselves. Even noble beings acted thus.

Sesshoumaru pushed a pair of crimson eyes from his mind. "You have seen that the soul of the half-demon is cracked to its being with cruelty. You assume that he will turn this cruelty on her, but it is you he will destroy if you try to take her from him." A cold thought lifted the demon's sprit, and he wondered if the earth wolf's heart still beat.

"You're wrong about her," the boy answered. "And..." his throat moved, as if he were swallowing something thick. "And I guess you're wrong about Inuyasha too," he finished in a small voice.

The half-raised claws retreated.

"Explain yourself," came the command.

The human gave a slow shrug, staring at his feet in the dust. "He knows I like Higurashi, and he hates my guts. Plus, there was something else that I did that made him really mad," he looked up. "I'm surprised he didn't kill me then. He could have, you know."

He lies, Sesshoumaru mused. The half-demon is a beast. He knows no restraint of any kind. "Then why did he not wrench your life from your body?" he probed.

The boy looked down again. "He said that he promised Higurashi," one odd-clad shoe nudged a pebble.

"And you doubt that he holds her in esteem?" Sesshoumaru demanded. "Don't be fooled by his coldness. Open affection is not in the nature of his bloodline. Inuyasha will allow no harm to come to the girl," a trace of bitterness escaped Sesshoumaru's control. "There is too much of his father in him for that." And that was enough of this. Rin looked up at him expectantly, and he motioned for her to come.

Her elegant movements were marred by coarse words. "You're strong. I bet you could take out Naraku." And that was all.

"He will defeat her enemies," Sesshoumaru continued for no reason other than it pleased him to do so. "When she is wronged, he will avenge. Do not trouble yourself with petty appearances."

"But what good is that?" the boy had failed to notice that the conversation was over. "If he esteems her only in his own heart, and she never gets to know why?" The boy's voice rose, "If he thinks she's worth anything, then she deserves to know," the human insisted. "What good is the fact that he thinks highly of her, if he acts like she's just a pile of dust, and -Rin!" his tone shifted from accusatory to almost frantic. "Stop right now! Aren't you supposed to wait for that Lord Sesshoumaru guy? What if he's mad?"

The child covered her laughing with one hand. Sesshoumaru smiled inwardly. He did like it when she remembered that he enjoyed the quiet. And speaking of which... The demon lord's pointed ears twitched as the human behind them kept up his racket. His claws flexed, and poison gathered.

There was a small hand tugging at his robes. "What is it?" he asked simply.

Tiny teeth nibbled one pink lip as she looked to the human and back, "Lord Sesshoumaru?" she whispered. "Mr. Hojo was nice to Rin."

So the fool had a name? "Very well," he answered as the sense of poison faded away. A new energy built.

"Sir!" Hojo bleated again. "You really ought to leave her here. Her guardian is coming in a minute!"

Sesshoumaru turned around. "Did you presume to tell me what to do, human?"

"Well you shouldn't take her away without getting the permission of the proper..." the Hojo-boy trailed off. "Hey, what's that glowing thing?"



The energy whip flared, and the human landed flat on his back. He made one loud squeak, and mumbled something vaguely like, "Next time, on Yu Yu Hakusho..."

Sesshoumaru walked, with Rin running a few steps ahead. Moments passed, and the trees closed in. The demon lord breathed carefully, seeking and finding Jaken's trail.

"If he esteems her in his own heart, and she never gets to know why...!"

"I bet you could take out Naraku. I want an alliance, Dog Lord."

"Heed your own words."

"My lord!" came Jaken's squeaky, reliable greeting. Sesshoumaru stopped moving, and allowed the lesser demon to prostrate himself in the customary manner, while Rin started playing with the hem of his robe. "Forgive your humble servant, Lord Sesshoumaru. I merely left the child alone while I chased after your disobedient steed, and as you can see, the human is quite unharmed." Jaken raised his head, "If you ask me, we should let her fend for herself more often, my lord!"

Sesshoumaru pulled the Staff of Skulls from his servant's grip and swatted Jaken in the head. Rin didn't hide her giggling this time.

"Of course not, my lord. Forgive me, my lord."

"Get up, Jaken."

"Of course, Lord Sesshoumaru!" the creature complied. "Ah Un is right around this next bend. Shall I tell him that we continue our search for the impudent half-demon, Naraku?"

I will slay Naraku for my own reasons.

"No," Sesshoumaru paused.

/I will slay Naraku for my own reasons, but she should know that I shall avenge her wrongs as well/.

"Tell him that we seek Kagura."


KURAMA: . . .

What did you think?

KURAMA: . . .
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