Fate never seemed to kind to anyone who just wanted to have a life of happiness. They had to fight for what they wanted and in the end it was never good enough. Fate was a cold-hearted woman and she would just give to those who did not seem to care what they got out of life, she seemed to favor those who only wanted to cause pain and suffering to those around them. Kagome knew first hand that she could never have the simply life, the little miko knew that if she finished her quest of finding the rest of the jewel shards and put Naraku in an early grave. It didn't seem like any of those things would be happening soon, she could never return to her happy life before she fell down the bone-eaters well and back five-hundred years into the past. It seemed as if her group and Naraku were bond to do this for the rest of eternity. It was truly a sad thought, Kagome wanted to grow old with a family, and pretend like this was just a silly little fairy tale.
Kagome sighed as she sat on the rim of bone-eaters well, it was a sad sight to see, and although she tried not to show her more depressed emotions around her friends, she couldn't help but let them out every so often when she was alone. Kagome was now nineteen, a second year senior, who; thanks to her grandfather, was known for having almost every ailment that could make a person bedridden. She laughed, although she knew her grandfather was just doing what he could to help her get through high school, it wouldn't have been very hard to say that she was just on her period, stomach virus, or even the flu. She was sure none of her friends from the future had even heard of some of the things her grandfather informed them of, but that didn't matter now, all of her friends from her time had a life of their own, and even some of them had families too.
Kagome had gone from a pretty school girl, to a grown woman in a matter of years. She still wore her school uniform, even though this time didn't see it as 'appropriate', she didn't care, it was comfortable to her, and easy to wash and get replaced it something should happen to it. Her big yellow backpack had a different story, it had taken a turn for the worse when Kagura used her Dace of the Dragon to try and put an end to her, but of course Inuyasha had been able to jump in and out of the way before it tore through the forest behind them. Kagome now carried a black bag, which was guarantied to withstand the harshest environments.
She had now grown into her figure, sun kissed skin from years of being outdoors, waist long hair, very busty, hips that gave her an hour glass form and legs that run on forever. And how she was still a virgin wasn't too much of a mystery; she never had the time to have a full-time relationship. Of course she had fooled around when men, and hell, even some girls too, besides, when she was home she didn't want to just have school work to do. She often went to parties, and hung out with friends, only because she knew she couldn't have that much fun when she was back in the past.
Kagome smirked at this, if Inuyasha knew she had fooled around with a couple of girls more than once, he would pull the 'big brother' act and say what she was doing was wrong, but you only live once, you had to enjoy life as much as you could. Then she thought of the reaction on Mirokus' face, he would probably have a heart-attack, or ask for Kagome to show some tricks to Sango. Even though the monk had finally got the nerve to ask Sango to marry him, he still had his perverted ways.
All in all Kagome was happy for them, even though Inuyasha didn't think it would last long, but with Kagome giving him a 'sit' command, he quickly decided not to talk about that again.
"Momma!" A small kit ran out of the forest being chased but a red blur. Kagome knew that it was Shippo, with all the years of Shippo going with out a mother, and Kagome looking after him, she only felt like it was fair to become his adopted mother, besides, she really did love the little kit like he was her own.
"Oi, you little runt, Kagome can't save ya' this time!" Inuyasha growled as he reached out and grabbed him by the tail.
"Owww, owww! Let go of my tail," Shippo cried, tears welling up in his eyes, as Kagome started her 'sit' command, Shippo yelled, "FOX FIRE!"
A neon blue flame blew up in Inuyasha face, making him drop Shippo and giving him enough time to ran into Kagomes' arms.
Inuyasha bared his fangs, and tried to reach out and grab him, but Kagome gave her command, and he face planted into the ground and groaned "Ugh, why do you… always take that little brats side!"
"Oh Inuyasha, I have my reasons, besides I know you both too well. Shippo, what'd you do to make him chase you?" Kagome smirked and sat Shippo onto the grassy floor.
"I-I-I, I didn't do it to make him mad!" Shippo whined, even thought he was still young, he had gotten a bit bigger, but not by much, this worried Kagome, maybe it was all the candy she had given him over the years. And his body just wasn't use to all the sugar and artificial flavors in it.
"Shippo." Kagome said a little louder, seeing his adopted mothers annoyance he quickly decided that telling her was the best option.
But of course, Inuyasha had beaten him to it be before he would even utter a letter.
"Your little brat ate my last packet of roman!" Inuyasha picked himself off the ground and dusted his haori free from dead grass. "And he knew it was my last one! Little whelp knew it would piss me off."
"Come now Inuyasha, where are we?" Kagome swept her arm across the felt, "We're in your forest! Gasp! And what on earth did I just climb out of only seconds ago?!" Kagome placed her hand on her forehead, "Might it be the Bone-eaters well?"
"Huff, whatever, keep your kid away from my shit." Inuyasha said letting his fangs glow in the moon light.
"Sure thing," Kagome picked up Shippo, "Ass." She muttered.
"HEY! I heard that!" Inuyasha said, picking up her black bag and slung it over his shoulder, "You know one of these days your mommy isn't going to be around to save you, you little squirt. And then I'll have my time to beat your little head!"
Shippo stuck his tongue out at him and perched himself atop of Kagomes left should and started running his tiny fingers through her silky hair. By the time that made it to Kaedes' village they could all smell the wonderful stew that was being cooked.
When they walked in Miroku, Sango Kirara, and Kaede greeted Kagome and welcomed back Shippo and Inuyasha. Inuyasha dropped her bag wear the door and sat himself down closet to Kaede to be the first one served.
"Welcome back Kagome," Sango said, as Shippo jumped off her shoulder and ran to her backpack and opened the small pouch looking for sweets.
"Glad to be back Sango, I missed you guys." Kagome smiled and looked around, seeing that everyone looked in good health, and there wasn't a fight after she left, "Anything fun happen while I was home?"
"Ah, yes child." Kaede voiced spooning a bowl of stew and handing it to Inuyasha.
"Yep!" Shippo interrupted Kaede, "We got news on where Naraku is hiding!"
Inuyasha made a disappointed sound, "Yeah, sad thing is, we gotta go through Sesshomaru's lands to be there in about a week, going around would delay us almost a month."
Kagome's stomach felt like it was doing flips, she didn't like going near Sesshomaru, with him trying to kill her on more then once, he was almost as bad as Kikyo. "Well we want the element of surprise, right?" Kagome voiced.
They all nodded, and she smiled, "Looks like we have to be extra careful in the Western lands then."
They all chatted for a while on new events coming up, and battle formations, although knowing Inuyasha, he would just charge in, so they did need a back up plan if his didn't work.
They all finished eating, and saying a quick good night, Kagome cuddled up with Shippo in her sleeping back, and they all quickly fell asleep.
In the morning the small group woke up to the pink, orange sky. Of course Inuyasha had been the first one up, when Kagome woke up; Shippo was already gone, probably playing outside. Sango and Miroku were curled up in the corner sharing each others warmth.
'Cute.' Kagome smiled as she lazily got out of her sleeping bag, grabbed three plastic water bottles and straightening her uniform as she walked outside to greet the day.
She walked around the small hut to a water pale where she dipped her hands in and splashed cool water onto her face.
"Ah, good morning child. Ye were always a morning person." Kaede sweetly smile as she came into view of the miko.
"Yeah," Kagome smile as she wiped her wet hands on her green skirt, and started to fill the empty water bottles. "It's a big day, ya know, we might actually find Naraku and kill him."
"Yes child, I know." Kaede said her voice slightly sad. "Ye must be careful, with all the shards he now possesses; he will likely be waiting for you or even the Western Lord himself."
Kagome shuttered at the though of fighting along side with Sesshomaru, she knew it would only benefit them, but would also have problems latter on, he was very powerful, and had almost killed Inuyasha a few times, even in his full youkai was out, Sesshomaru seemed to take him down very easily. Kagome thought it was only because Sesshomaru a youkai and had more control over whatever was in his demonic blood.
"Kagome, come on! We gotta go, pack your shit and let's move!" Inuyasha shouted from the front of the hut.
Kagome rolled her eyes, and recapped the last water bottle. "Yeah, yeah, I'm coming."
Kagome rolled up her sleeping bag, and tied it to the side of her backpack and handed it to Sango, who was sitting on the transformed Kirara, along with Miroku and Shippo. They took to the air quickly, and Kagome hopped onto Inuyasha back, and they took off just as the others did. It only seemed like it had been a couple of hours before they decided to stop for a small break.
Even Inuyasha couldn't complain when Kagome pulled out a packet of roman from her bag and started to make it. It didn't surprise Kagome one bit that Inuyasha was a little fidgety; she had seen more then one soul collector on there way here. They all knew that Kikyo was in the area, a painful look crossed Kagomes face but it only lasted for a second.
It wasn't the dead mikos fault she was walking among the living, and even thought Kagome had once loved Inuyasha, she no longer had those feelings for him, if anything she loved him as a best friend and a big brother, and knew better then to have childish thoughts of having anything father then a friendship with him. His heart belonged to Kikyo, even if she was trying to drag him to hell with her. Kagome couldn't stop him if he truly wanted to spend the rest of eternity in hell with her. It might have broken her heart to know that Inuyasha was meant to be with Kikyo now, and in the afterlife, but it couldn't be helped. As she remembered, fate was a cruel thing. Kagome pretended not to see the soul collectors, even thought Shippo had pointed one out to Sango and Miroku.
"Inuyasha," Kagome said after finishing her food, "mind if we camp here for the night? It would be easier to be able to travel in the morning when the sun wasn't up yet, it'd be much cooler."
"Feh, weak humans." Inuyasha replied rolling his eyes, "Can't stand the sun, poor you, well how do you think taking on Naraku is going to be?"
Even if he sounded like he was disappointed in stopping, he was really overjoyed. Kagome gave a silent thanks, and picked up the dirty pot she had cooked the roman in.
"Sango, would you like to help me clean this?" Kagome asked needing to talk to her closest female friend.
"Hm, sure thing." Sango replied standing up and walking along side Kagome.
The two made their way to a small flowing stream, and Kagome sat the pot into the water and gave a small sigh. Even though years ago she would have killed to be Kikyo so that Inuyasha would love her the way she loved him, now she though it was a silly idea. Even thought Inuyasha was very attractive, and Kagome thought he was drop dead sexy, he was very child, and seemed to whine when he didn't get his way, plus the 'weak'human comments she had to hear on a daily basic, was annoying, if she was so weak then why did he keep her around? There had been so many times Kagome had tried to get his attention, but it failed. Even if he saw Kagome as a lover, it really wouldn't be her that he saw; it would be Kikyo in a newer body.
She sighed; Kagome knew this wasn't the life she wanted. True, she could have never thought of being stuck in the feudal era five-hundred years in the past, but she never thought she would have loved someone as much as she loved him and still get burned. She figured that being in high school was the normal way to get her heart broken, not by a man that was sealed to a tree.
"Kagome, are you okay?" Sango's voice pulling her attention, the slayer she saw as a sister looked upset by her distractions.
"Yeah," Kagome said in a chipper voice, but then her tone turned sad, "I know it's been a few years since I fell out of love with Inuyasha, but I can't help feeling a little betrayed when he goes off to see Kikyo. I mean, I do get that she was his first love, and the same with her, but it hurts because she's tried to kill him so many times. And yet he'll go running after her as if nothing ever happened."
Sango saw the broken look in Kagome's eyes, it took ever inch of will-power not to go after the undead miko and destroy her for all the pain she had cause her soul-sister. "I know Kagome, it does seem very unfair to all of us, but it hurts you the most. Inuyasha, that idiot, he can't pick who he wants." She paused, thinking those one over a few times before voicing herself again, "Kagome, if the chance was ever given, and Inuyasha did pick you over Kikyo, would you be with him?"
"Oh no Sango, those ships have long since sailed. I couldn't be with him." Kagome answered as if on cue, "Inuyasha needs someone, I don't know who that is, but I can't be there for him in any way, shape or form, other then a friend."
Shippo sat on the ground, waiting for his adopted mother to return with Sango, with a sucker in his small mouth. Even though he was still a child by youkai standers, he had out lived Kagome and Sango combined. He knew mortal women, and Kagome was far from okay, he wished his mother wouldn't think so hard on depressing matters, it didn't make her as beautiful or full of life.
"Feh, taking forever again!" growled Inuyasha,"I'm outta here, tell them I'll be back in awhile, will ya, ya little rut."
"SHUT UP!" Shippo shouted pulling the red sucker out of him mouth and pointing it at the hanyou, "If you're so smart then why don't you wait for them to get back and tell Kagome that you're going to see Kikyo."
Shocked by the little fox's words, Inuyasha felt a little hurt, but of course he didn't show it. He was about to get up and shake him by the tail, but Miroku stopped him.
"Inuyasha, I will make sure to tell them you left, will you be returning shortly?" He asked trying to defuse the situation as quickly as possible.
"Hell if I know," he jumped off the tree he was sitting in and started towards the last place he saw the soul collector.
'That poor, poor man.' Miroku thought to himself, he had always wondered why he wanted the company of a dead woman, rather then a warm and lovely alive girl who would do anything for him to be happy.
Of course he wouldn't say that out loud, it wasn't his place to tell Inuyasha who to love or who to choice.
"He's an idiot! Why would anyone want to love someone who's tried to kill them?" Shippo asked, confused out of him mind.
"I do not know Shippo, love works in odd ways." Miroku simply said.
"Oh, like how Sango loves you even though you grab onto other girls when she's not around?" Shippo asked innocently.
"Wh-what? I do not do that anymore!" Miroku felt his face starting to throb from an awaiting smack from either Sango or Kagome if they knew he still flirted with other women.
"Yes you do, just last week you asked four girls to bare your child." Shippo whined sticking the sucker back into his mouth.
"Now, now Shippo; wouldn't want Kagome to know about all of those hidden sweets back at Kaede's hut." Miroku smirked, "Just do not tell Sango, and I can keep my mouth shut about that to your mother."
"NO FAIR!!" Shippo shouted and then crossed his arms looking away from the monk. It couldn't believe he would pull this on him.
"Ah, little Shippo, all if fair in life." Miroku said smiling, knowing he had won this small battle.
Kagome sniffed the crisp air, "We should grab Shippo and Kirara, they'd enjoy a nice drip on a hot spring, there's one close, I can smell the warm air." Kagome smiled.
"That sounds wonderful!" Sango clasped her hands over her head, she needed a bath, although she used some of Kagomes hygienic products from her time she also enjoyed a good bath ever chance she got.
"Alrighty, we'll grab my bag, my son and Kirara for a good and relaxing bath." Kagome smiled as she lifted the pot and started back towards their makeshift camp sight.
When they returned, Inuyasha was, of course, absent. Kagome smiled at Shippo, not wanting to show her hurt and walked down to him. He didn't seem like his normal chipper self, but she was sure that Inuyasha had upset him with some kind of comment before he took off to meet the dead miko. Miroku sat under a tree cross legged, with his staff leaning against his shoulder. Although his eyes were closed, and face not showing any signs of emotion, he looked like he was deep in his thought, maybe they could sneak off again and take a bath and relax while he waiting for Inuyasha. But Kagome knew that he wouldn't be back until morning, which was still a ways off. Even though it did look around five in the afternoon and they should still be traveling but she was grateful that they could have a small break.
Kagome picked up her bag, setting the cooking pot against a tree and getting Shippo's attention with a small 'psttt' he looked up at her and she motioned him to get onto her shoulder and they walked off looking for the hot spring that she had smelled. When they arrived Shippo was the first to strip as quickly as he could and jump into the warm water, followed by Kirara, then Sango. Kagome waiting until all of them were in the water before putting up a barrier, making sure their relaxing time wouldn't be ruined by an attack… or an unwanted pervert peeking through the bushes.
"Oh goodness, Kagome I'm sure glad you knew there was a hot spring near by. This feels amazing!" Sango voiced as she leaned back against the stones surrounding the small spring.
"I figured you all would like it, besides I needed a much need soak myself." Kagome smiled and started taking her uniform out, and placing it by a towel and wash rags, along with her shampoo's and conditioner and body washes. She eased her way into the water, feeling like it had been months since she had felt clean.
She sat next to Sango talking of multiple things, Shippo and Kirara played father away, splashing each other.
Inuyasha stepped into a small cleaning, watching the soul collectors flying around Kikyo, she was perched in a low hanging branch, she had her eyes closed and was humming. It sound coming from Kikyo vibrated in Inuyashas' sensitive ears, it was a sad song. He had heard it before, he didn't know where, but it would have made even the coldest of hearts feel pain for her. She looked as emotionless as Sesshomaru, her mask, just as cold as his.
"Inuyasha what has taken you so long to find me?" Kikyo asked with closed eyes. She felt his demonic aura for sometime, and had been waiting for what felt like hours to her. But being dead, she needed all the time she could, with being dead, she couldn't survive off of the souls of recently departed for too long.
"We're tracking Naraku, sorry, I had to get the gang to stop." Inuyasha said, her voice filling his body. Although it was empty, he still clung to every word she said.
"I see, and my reincarnation, what of her?" Kikyo said opening her eyes, watching Inuyasha approaching.
"Kagome?" Inuyasha felt like he had to be careful with what he said about her to Kikyo, although he loved her as much as someone could, she had tried to kill Kagome many times, and he couldn't afford to lose her so close to Naraku.
"Yes, her." Kikyo stated, "What is she up to now a days?"
"Nothing, she's playing mommy with Shippo, and house maid with the others." Inuyasha commented, leaning on the tree, although he did love speaking with Kikyo, this conversation was boring beyond words.
"Mommy?" Kikyo cocked an eyebrow, "So she had taken in the kit as her own? Interesting, she is indeed an odd one, that girl. Do you think in another time that she and I would have been friends? Or hated each other as we do now?"
"Hate? Kagome has too big a heart to hate anyone; she does so much for us all. And puts herself last all the time. But as for being friends, I'm not so sure about that." Inuyasha said, he had been moving closer to Kikyo, he had his hands on her waist. Kikyo let a surge of pure energy out, but only enough to give Inuyasha a little shock.
"Why do you speak of her in such a way? Do you love her, or i?" Her voice sounding almost angry, with a hint of annoyance.
Inuyasha was surprised but her reaction, it almost sounded as if he had given the wrong answer, it wasn't like this was a right or wrong question, he was simply asked to give an thoughts. Maybe he was just thinking too hard on this, or maybe Kikyo wanted Inuyasha to suck up to her. He didn't know, but he didn't want to stay on this topic anymore.
"What are you doing out here Kikyo?" Inuyasha's voice filled with nothing but love, and warmth.
"I was just heading West, I am also looking for Naraku."
Once Kagome and the others had finished with their baths it was dark outside, they made their way back to camp. Kagome figured that she wouldn't be seeing Inuyasha anytime soon. So she placed her sleeping bag onto the ground, and seeing as how it was past Shippo's bet time she pulled the kit close to her chest and snuggled up with him while the rest of her group started to fall asleep. Kagome put a light barrier on the surrounding area so she would be woken up by either an attack or Inuyasha, but seeing as how Inuyasha had been with Kikyo, she knew a fight would happen between them.
Pushing those thought aside, she quickly fell to sleep with her son in her arms, and waited for the morning sun to wake the group. She knew tomorrow would be a tiring day; they were only a day or so away from Sesshomaru's lands. And Kagome hadn't heard any word about him, but if her guess was as good as any others, she knew he would be heading towards Naraku, sooner or later they would all meet up. Which wasn't a good thing on Inuyasha part, the youkai had tried to kill all of them, more then once, and they all needed to be fully rested and healthy for a fight to the death with the evil hanyou. Kagome wished they could make a temporary alliance with the older of the brothers. But thought it was an odd idea being nice to Sesshomaru. It didn't seem like the youkai had it in him to be nice to anyone, and only did things for him own personal gain. But soon this nightmare would be over, and Kagome hoped that she could close the well and seal it for good.