ETERNALLY DESTINED; SECRET SANTA 2011 by ED Staff
Past Featured StorySummary: Fanfiction gifts created for members of our Deviant Art group, Eternally Destined.
Categories: Fairy Tales, Fables Characters: InuYasha, Kagome
Genres: Alternate Universe, Comedy, Drama, Family, Fluff, Hentai, Romance, Slice of Life, WAFF
Warnings: Explicit Sex, Language
Challenges: None
Series: None
Chapters: 18 Completed: No Word count: 46901 Read: 21453 Published: December 25, 2011 Updated: December 28, 2011
Story Notes:
Eternal Destiny, its registered authors, nor guest authors claim any rights or ownership to any of the InuYasha characters. The original characters and plots are the property of the authors. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.

1. FOR DANGERSQUE: Slave For You by ED Staff

2. FOR LAURENA1234: Winter Wishes by ED Staff

3. FOR KMOATON: Assault on December 24th by ED Staff

4. FOR DANGERSQUE: Family For the Holidays by ED Staff

5. FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff

6. FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff

7. FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff

8. FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff

9. FOR 3LUE3UTTERFLY: Five for You, Two for Us, One for Me by ED Staff

10. FOR MISSMIROKU: Back To December by ED Staff

11. FOR KAGOME313: Winter Blessings by ED Staff

12. FOR MOONSTAR9411: The Holiday by ED Staff

13. FOR MOONSTAR9411: My First Christmas by ED Staff

14. FOR ASAGI-K-KUROSAKI: The Effort Was Worth It by ED Staff

15. FOR ASAGI-K-KUROSAKI: Two Of A Kind by ED Staff

16. FOR DEVAIGH: Her Kiss by ED Staff

17. FOR CUTIEKAY182009 by ED Staff

18. FOR LEXAII: The Perfect Present by ED Staff

FOR DANGERSQUE: Slave For You by ED Staff

Warnings: Mild BDSM, explicit sex, naughty words

A/N: I really hope you enjoy this. I had fun writing it. To see the coat: http://bit.ly/t40lLu and the checkbook is real! http://amzn.to/uxJOst

ooOOoo

He thought he had done a great job of picking Kagome’s gift. It was a long cashmere coat with a minx fur collar. She had always complained of never having a nice dress coat to wear to occasions that are more formal and when Inuyasha found the coat, he thought it would be perfect for her. As he wrapped the coat, Sesshomaru came in. With a sniff, Sesshomaru turned up his nose and walked away. Having seen some of the gift choices Inuyasha had made in the past, Sesshomaru was sufficiently surprised how well he had done this time. He refused, however, to share that sentiment with Inuyasha, instead choosing to show disdain and walk away without comment.

For Inuyasha, that snub meant, once again, he had made a poor choice.

“Dammit! What can I do to fix this one?”

ooOOoo

“I’m officially a fool.” Inuyasha decided as he allowed Miroku to lead him into the steamy hot Barnes and Noble bookstore. The change from the snowy cold into the almost suffocating warmth of the overly crowded store had Inuyasha’s dark bangs sticking to his forehead. He know out of the all the people he could have gone to for help, Miroku should have been last on his list but he was a desperate man and desperate times called for desperate measures. As he followed the dark-haired ponytail through the crowd of shoppers, Inuyasha could only hope he wouldn’t regret this latest decision.

Miroku led his friend to the back corner of the store, where the relationship books were found. Seeing the confusion on his friend’s face, Miroku searched the shelves and with an “A-ha”, he pulled out a tiny book. Handing it to Inuyasha, Miroku’s grin widened as he saw understanding suddenly appear on Inuyasha’s face.

“Sex Checks? Are you serious?” Inuyasha asked incredulously as he flipped through the book. It was a tiny book full of checks from “The World Bank of Savings and Love”. Some checks had mild sexy suggestions while others featured true raunchy ideas. What intrigued Inuyasha the most were the blank checks in the book.

“Why are some blank?” Inuyasha asked his grinning friend. Miroku explained that the blanks would allow Kagome to personalize her wish.

“It’ll ensure that she’ll get exactly what she wants. By the way, I got one for Sango. I can’t wait until she whips it out!” Miroku concluded with a lewd gleam in his eyes.

Inuyasha snorted at the gleam and decided to head to the cash register. “I just hope this works.”

ooOOoo

Kagome squealed with joy as she pulled out the luxurious coat. Quickly pulling it on, she jumped in Inuyasha’s arms and smothered him with kisses.

“It’s perfect! I love it!” Standing again, she twirled around the room, and inserted her hands in the pockets. Feeling something poke her hand, Kagome pulled out a red envelope.

“What’s this?” She asked, once again taking a seat in Inuyasha’s lap. Inuyasha tried vainly to stop the blush that had begun to creep up his face. As she pulled the checkbook from its red envelope, he tried to explain.

“I kinda thought you might like it. It seemed like fun.”

Kagome smiled as she flipped through the racy checks. Her smile turned into a laugh when she reached the blanks. Leaning over, she gave Inuyasha a big kiss.

“Kinda like it? I think I love it as much as the coat!” Inuyasha smiled but then his stomach dropped at her next words.

“Boy, oh boy, do I have plans for you!”

ooOOoo

After a few days had passed, the nervousness Inuyasha had been experiencing passed when Kagome didn’t mention the book again. Maybe that is why he was so surprised when a package arrived at his office on December 30. It had no name, except his, and no return address so with a great deal of trepidation, he unwrapped the package. The contents made his heart come to a complete standstill. On top of the contents was one of the formerly blank checks. Kagome filled it out with her request:

Slave For An Evening

Also inside was an envelope with a letter and a hotel key card:

Inuyasha,

These are your instructions. Please follow them to the letter or you will be severely punished! You are to come to the Hilton hotel, room 1784 at 7:00p.m. on New Year’s Eve. Before you enter, you should be wearing the contents of this box. Of course, you can wear pants and a long coat- at least until you reach the room… Again, fail to completely follow the instructions and you will be severely punished!

Kagome

Moving the papers aside, Inuyasha gasped aloud at the contents of the box. It held a black leather blindfold, a pair of silk red thongs and a male chastity cage. At the sight of the chastity cage, Inuyasha picked up his phone to call Kagome. To his surprise, he got the message that his number had been blocked! Cursing in his head, Inuyasha knew he could not show up but he wasn’t a coward and he definitely wasn’t going to run from instructions on a slip of paper!

ooOOoo

Standing in front of room 1784, Inuyasha once again debated the logic behind what he was doing. He finally admitted to himself he was intrigued by Kagome’s plans but there was also a long chill of fear traveling up and down his spine. He wasn’t aware of any kinks Kagome had but who knew what hid beneath that prime exterior?

Reaching into the pocket of his trench coat, Inuyasha removed the mask and the key. Sliding the card and opening the door, Inuyasha was greeted by the strong smell of patchouli. The room was cloaked in completely darkness. Before he could call out, Kagome’s voice reached his ears. “Come in, Inuyasha. Close the door and put on your mask. Remove your extra clothing and leave them on the floor.”

Quickly, Inuyasha stripped until he was only clad in the requested outfit. Because of the mask, he didn’t realize Kagome has ignited several candles and she stood watching him now with unabashed lust. He was slightly startled when she took his hand and carefully led him into the room and turned him in another direction. With a gentle push, Inuyasha found himself falling back on a bed. Following Kagome’s quick directions on how to arrange himself, Inuyasha was stunned when his wrists were bound by soft restraints.

“Hey! Kagome…” The words died in Inuyasha’s throat as the blindfold was removed and he took in the appearance of Kagome. Her midnight hair was in long, cascading waves around her shoulders. Her trim body was encased in a red and black tapestry corset and a tight-fitted black skirt with garters. His eyes traveled down her black thigh-high covered legs to the tips of her 5-inch stilettos. His breath caught in his throat as he noted the riding crop in her gloved hands.

“You know,” Kagome began as she trailed the leather crop down his bare chest. “It took me a few moments to decide which check to use. Finally, I decided I wanted to see what it would be like to be alpha for once in this relationship.”

Removing the glove from her hands Kagome ran her bare hands over Inuyasha’s heated skin. Bending over, she ran her tongue over his nipples, pleased to see them quickly become hard peaks. The moan that can from his throat as she nipped and suckled them emboldened her to go further. With her tongue, she left a warm, wet path to his groin. Pulling the thong down, Kagome was surprised to see Inuyasha actual wore the chastity cage. An evil grin danced across her face as she moved to stimulate him to the point of insanity.

Pulling the mask back over Inuyasha’s eyes, Kagome took several ice cubes from the bucket on the nightstand. Running the cubes over his skin, Kagome smirked as gasps came from Inuyasha. Kagome watched as he struggled to pull his hands free from the bindings.

“Kaaagomeee! Let me go!” Inuyasha began to beg.

Kagome giggled. “Not yet. We have so much more to do.” Taking the ice into her mouth, Kagome trailed her cold lips and tongue down his body. Inuyasha shivered and moaned as she reached his trapped cock. She blew her ice-cooled breath through the lattice of cage and watched as Inuyasha’s cock struggled and failed to rise in its confinement. Reaching his free balls, Kagome swept her cold tongue across the heated orbs. With another devilish glance at Inuyasha’s blindfolded and rapturous face, she took them into her mouth.

ooOOoo
I

nuyasha nearly jumped out of his skin when Kagome began to roll his balls around in her cold, cold mouth. His cock, encased by the hard acrylic ached to rise but was thoroughly contained. Just when he thought he could take the suckling and teasing of her mouth, Kagome stopped. Before he could protest, she slid over his body and he could suddenly smell the musky sweet scent of her pussy.

“Eat me.” She commanded. Eagerly Inuyasha swept his tongue around the outer lips of her dripping sex. Using his tongue to separate the folds of Kagome’s pussy, Inuyasha began to fuck her with his tongue. Kagome’s hips rocked as he continued to suck and lick the feast in front of him. Frustrated because he couldn’t use his hand, his lips closed over Kagome’s clit and using his teeth to gently but firmly hold it, he began to suck the pleasure nub. Unable to control the shockwaves of pleasure coursing through her, Kagome's legs clamped down around Inuyasha’s head. She cried out his name as a huge orgasm rocked through her body. Collapsing on his chest, she lay there a moment to regain her breath. Ignoring Inuyasha’s requests to untie his hands, Kagome reached on the bedside table and grabbed a key. Unlocking the cage, a few strokes of her hand was all it took to bring Inuyasha’s impressive cock to life.

Inuyasha gave a loud groan as Kagome began to give his cock much needed attention. She slid her tongue across the head and Inuyasha moaned. She continued to tease him, only taking the head of his cock into her warm, moist mouth. He arched his hips, trying to get her to take in more.  

“Come on, Kagome….stop teasing me.” Inuyasha groaned out in a barely recognizable voice.  

Instead, Kagome ran her tongue along the underside of his erection. With her hand, she fondled his balls, giving them a gentle squeeze. She continued back up his cock with her tongue and in one swift move, she took as much of him in her mouth as possible. She slid her hot mouth up and down on his shaft, making sure she gave the head an extra suck when she reached the top.  

Inuyasha thrust his hips up to meet her mouth. He could feel his balls tightening as Kagome continued to suck his cock and squeeze the ball. He was trying to hold back, so this could last as long as possible but he knew he wouldn't last too much longer. The only thing Inuyasha could do was moan and claw bonds attached to the bed, trying to find a way to release the pleasure. Sensing he was close to reaching his peak, Kagome stopped what she was doing. Inuyasha began to plead at the loss of sensation.

“Kagome, please…”

Kagome ignored his plea, instead focusing her attention on filling her cunt. Lining up his shaft with her hole, Inuyasha groaned as he felt Kagome's hot core sliding down his length. They both sighed with pleasure when his entire shaft was completely immersed in the hot, wet, tightness. Quickly, the only sounds in the room were the sounds of their bodies coming together. Heavy breathing and moans from the both of them broke the silence. Kagome could feel the tightening in her gut and she knew the orgasm that was coming was going to be big. She continued to meet Inuyasha thrusts, thoroughly enjoying the lascivious ecstasy taking place in her body.

Inuyasha lay on the bed, his hands clutching the bonds around his wrists as Kagome slid her hot pussy up and down over his shaft. She was so tight and as her cunt gripped his cock, Inuyasha struggled to hold his load. Kagome showed no mercy, quickly flexing her hips, forcing his quivering shaft in and out of her throbbing cunt. When her orgasm ripped through her body, her back arched almost painfully and she screamed in ecstasy.

Trying hard to hold his own release, Inuyasha could feel her walls clenching and releasing his hard shaft. Suddenly, they grabbed him, gripping him as if the very walls were trying to squeeze the cum out of him. With a barely suppressed roar, Inuyasha released his load deep into Kagome's depths. Shuddering from the force of the climax, Inuyasha felt weak and as Kagome collapsed on him, he felt his own body sag.

Kagome lay on Inuyasha for a moment, then willing her body to move, she heard his whimper as he slid out of her. Reaching up to release his bonds, Kagome was happy to feel his arms wrap around her. They lay tired and content, enjoying the afterglow of fabulous sex.

Inuyasha stroked Kagome’s ass. Giving it a playful pinch, he had to ask.

“When are you cashing your next check?”

FOR LAURENA1234: Winter Wishes by ED Staff
“Inuyasha has gone again,” Miroku sighed, not needing to point out where- or who- the half-demon went to as the group kept warm in Kaede's hut.

Sango frowned and leaned over to the monk. “He said he was bringing Kagome back,” she murmured low enough only for his ears.

“He must have gotten sidetracked,” Miroku muttered as his dark blue eyes glanced out where lost souls were steadily rising, causing a glow in the trees. Snow from the last few nights covered the whole area in white, but it wasn't so hard to catch the languid movements of the soul collectors keeping the souls close.

“Are you okay, Kagome?” Shippo asked as Kagome set her pack down and slipped off her black boots to sit near the fire.

Kagome smiled. “Yeah... It's kind of a shame, though. I wanted to tell him along with you guys that I'm going to celebrate Christmas with my family.”

“Chris...mas?” her friends questioned, looking at the girl from the future curiously.

Kagome grinned, her smile truly happy. Inuyasha's absence was pushed far to the back of her mind as she explained the holiday starting with St. Nick, elves, flying reindeer, stockings, mistletoe, decorated evergreen trees, and ending with gifts. Tugging her bag over, she said, “I got a present for all of you,” opening her bag to reveal the presents covered in different colored wrapping paper.

Shippo's emerald eyes brightened and he all but dove into her yellow backpack and snatched two of the smaller packages. He sniffed and shook it, hearing something jangle inside.

The priestess from the future shook her head. “You can open them tomorrow from now, Shippo. On Christmas.” She smiled when the kit pouted. “There's also names on them, so make sure to grab the right one.”

“Kagome” Sango waited until the girl looked at her before saying, “Maybe you should take Inuyasha with you to your time.”

Her brows went up in surprise and confusion. “Why would I? He looks like he rather stay here.” Saying that, her eyes drifted to the door frame, eying the glow of the snow just beyond. She was aware of the deceased souls hovering by the Sacred Tree- even went out of her way to avoid seeing the clearing. It was obvious Kikyou was around and that Inuyasha was with her but Kagome wanted to be ignorant. Nothing was going to ruin this special holiday for her.

The demon slayer frowned thoughtfully. “Well, lately he's been... acting strangely...”

Kagome gave Sango her full attention. “What do you mean?”

“He's been mopier than usual,” Shippo piped up. He hugged the lumpy present addressed to him as if it was an attachment to his body.

Miroku nodded. “It looks like he's depressed about something. You would probably be the best to talk to him about it.”

She frowned, “I guess I could see what's wrong...” After his little meeting with Kikyou, she thought as she stood up. Excusing herself, she stepped outside. The snow crunched underneath her boots as she walked in the direction of the well, the frost slapping color into her cheeks and the tip of her nose. The tips of her fingers felt numb with the cold but she absolutely adored it as winter hit the Feudal Era.

Whistling to the tune 'Winter Wonderland' she looked up as she entered Inuyasha's Forest. The bare branches spread like webs, entangling each other as the last leaves clung hopelessly to life. The birds had long since flown south for the winter, leaving her in silence. She wasn't even aware that she neared the Sacred Tree until a Soul Collector floated by her.

Kagome stared at it until it was gone from her sight, then turned to look at the Sacred Tree. She could just barely hear Kikyou's voice as she bid Inuyasha a farewell, at least for now as she faded away like a ghost. Inuyasha had stared at her even after she was gone, longing and mourning in his gaze.

Kagome watched solemnly at the scene before her. How many times has she said that she knew Kikyou and Inuyasha were meant to be together? It obviously didn't make any difference to the pain deep in her heart. She felt tears prick the back of her eyes and blurred her vision. Kagome quickly blinked them away, willing herself to step back. Why am I still here? It's obvious that if I left, Inuyasha would just easily replace me with Kikyou. It'd probably make him more happier, she noted dryly, grimacing at her own thoughts. Before Inuyasha could catch her staring, she turned towards the well, thinking that alone time would be what he needed- or wanted.

So caught up in her own thoughts, she didn't notice the wind change so that her scent blew directly in Inuyasha's direction.

She tried reasoning with herself that Miroku and the others may need her medical supplies from her time and Inuyasha would want to keep Kikyou away from the lines of battle as well as he could. Of course, she knew the real reason why she couldn't leave, even if she didn't want to see the hard truth. Inuyasha still had her heart. Even though Kikyou owned his.

Maybe she could have distanced herself from Inuyasha and try to have a more friendly relationship with him. But it seemed that every time Inuyasha would speak privately to her, it was way too easy to imagine that he had feelings for her as well. It was those moments of being together that made her stay there. They certainly outnumbered Kikyou's visits.

Kagome couldn't help but feel a bit of guilt for the undead priestess. While the school girl was able to travel with the half-demon any time she wished, Kikyou had her own lonely travels in order to keep track of Naraku's whereabouts and to keep herself off his radar.

A breeze blew through, tossing her raven hair and biting revealed flesh, making her shiver down to her bones. But was it the cold air? Or was it her thoughts on being kicked out of the Feudal Era by Inuyasha himself?

Kagome had to go to her time. That was the only place she could go without answering too many questions. She definitely couldn't ask what was wrong with Inuyasha after seeing Kikyou. Even if she did, Miroku, Sango, and Shippo would see her sullen mood and question her on that. Besides, she didn't want Inuyasha to be uncomfortable around her, which seemed to happen every time after he met up with Kikyou. It was easier just to leave for a while.

The well was in sight and she breathed a sigh, watching her breath leave in a fog. She just barely set one foot in the clearing before she heard Inuyasha's voice.

“Going back to your time, Kagome?”

Kagome turned around, taking in his crossed arms and sharp, but sad, gaze as if he had been waiting there for a while. She managed a smile at him, “Yeah... just for a couple days. I need time to spend with my family.”

Instead of the argument she was expecting from him, he just nodded. He walked beside her as she started for the well.

Kagome glanced up at him. His expression seemed unreadable as he stared straight ahead. She sighed silently, watching the first snow flake fall. “I could walk ten feet by myself, you know,” she said with no real heat in her tone.

He snorted, “With your luck? You might be attacked by a demon before you can get to the well. Or slip and break your head on something.”

She decided she didn't like his tone. It was too dull now, like he didn't want to be talking in the first place. She wouldn't blame him though, she felt uncomfortable talking to him after speaking to Kikyou too. When they came up just inches away from the well, peering inside to stare at the bones of Mistress Centipede, she shook herself mentally and turned toward him. He turned to her as well, as if expecting it. One minute passed. Then two. It took a moment to gather herself until she blurted, “Is something wrong?”

Inuyasha raised both dark brows as he stared at her. Obviously, this wasn't what he expected. “No...” he answered suspiciously.

Stuffing her hands in her coat pockets, she murmured a soft 'oh' and slid her gaze to his chest, unable to look at his face. She knew she'd see traces of sorrow and guilt on his face from meeting Kikyou. Holiday spirit. Happy, happy, happy, she thought to herself. The weight of her yellow backpack reminded her that she was still holding Inuyasha's gift. It kind of felt wrong for her to give it to him after seeing him with the priestess, like a scorned girlfriend. Her lips pressed together tightly at that. She wasn't even his girlfriend! She was being totally unreasonable!

“When will you be back?” Inuyasha's soft question drew her out of her resentful thoughts as he gazed at her with a gentleness that made her heart melt. He of all people knew that Kikyou was a poisonous thorn in Kagome's side.

It was merely a given she would be distant from him to hide her pain. “A few days,” she murmured as she peeked up at him through her lashes.

Inuyasha frowned slightly at her then shook his head. “Keh. Do whatever you want.” Crossing his arms tight across his chest, he looked away from her and the well. The walls were back up as quick as they came down and Kagome had to wonder.

“Inuyasha...” she said softly, her breath fogging in front of her. He glanced at her with a look of contempt, exhaling a sigh through his nose. “Can you come with me to my time?”

His brows rose, hiding underneath his silver bangs. He clearly didn't expect that out of her after she caught him with Kikyou. “You... want me to?”

Kagome nodded firmly, then smiled. “I want to give you something for Christmas.”

“What's 'Chris-mas'?” he asked in confusion as she knelt on the lip of the well. Kagome's smile only gotten wider as she dropped down and let the magic guide her through time. She knew he followed, out of curiosity if for nothing else, and waited as he emerged beside her on the other side to help her out faster. “Well?”

She searched through her coat pockets and pulled out a tiny, wrapped gift- the smallest of all the presents- and placed it into his upturned palm. “Don't rip the paper off until tomorrow,” she told him with a wag of her finger as he stared at it, sniffing subtly.

“What is it?” he asked as he shook it, hearing dull jingles inside.

“It's a present for Christmas, a holiday we celebrate tomorrow in my time,” she told him simply. It would be too much of a hassle to go into explaining Christmas to an ever-questioning dog. Instead, she led him outside, where it snowed heavily and covered the whole shrine in white.

Unlike the Feudal era's beauty she had admired, the snow in her time only served to remind her of the time when Kikyou had 'convinced' her that she didn't belong in their world after she had hurt Inuyasha to the point of unconsciousness. She had been so worried over Inuyasha, yet she didn't want to risk going back to him and prove Kikyou's point that she will end up hurting him again. Only Inuyasha's assurances were able to kick her back into her senses to go back to him.

“What are you waiting for, Wench?” Inuyasha's gruff voice startled her as he walked pass her towards the house decorated with Christmas lights. “It's only getting colder.”

Kagome merely blinked at his back. The determination to forget Kikyou and heartache reared it's head once again and she followed suit. Just ahead, she spotted Souta patting a plain snowman he had made and waved.

“Kagome! You're back already?” Souta questioned as his eyes slid from his sister to Inuyasha and brightened. “Hey, Inuyasha!”

“Of course, I'm back,” Kagome said in annoyance. “Why wouldn't I come back for the holidays?”

“I can name a few,” Inuyasha grumbled as he stuffed his arms in his sleeves. He caught Kagome's glare directed at him and sniffed but said nothing else.

“Mom and I already decorated the tree,” Souta informed as he picked up a handful of snow, much to Kagome's disappointment. “But we left the star for you.”

Kagome smiled and nodded. “Good enough.” Souta raised his gaze to his sister, glancing back down at the ball in his hand then at Inuyasha meaningfully. She beamed and gave a curt nod. “Go!” she commanded with glee and she and Souta ran in opposite direction, leaving Inuyasha clueless. Hiding behind the Sacred Tree, Kagome smirked to herself as she caught Inuyasha slowly looking around at the snow covered grounds. Eying Souta across from her, she motioned to the half-demon before balling up snow in her hands.

“Attack!” she yelled and threw her projectile, watching it fly just over his head. Souta's, however, smacked him dab in the chest when he turned towards her.

He brushed off the snow with a scowl before shooting her a daring glare. Combined with his widening smirk as he squatted down to gather snow, she squeaked hid behind the tree. She could hear Souta's grunt as he was knocked flat on his ass with a giant snowball and carefully glanced from her position- only to find Inuyasha gone and another snowball falling directly on top of her head. Shaking it away with a shiver, she looked up at the smug half-demon.

“Gonna have to do a better job than that, Wench.” Inuyasha smirked before dropping down next to her into a crouch, his expression all predator. “I'll show you a bit of mercy and give you five seconds to run. Five...”

Kagome squeaked and ran for her brother. She would totally use him as a human shield if Inuyasha was planning to hit her as hard as he had hit Souta. Poor Souta was still in a daze on the floor when she swept him up and dove for cover behind a heap of snow.

No sooner had she ducked did a snowball explode against her makeshift barrier.

“Attack!” Souta shouted as soon as he became aware of his surroundings. He and Kagome quickly made a pile of snowballs as Inuyasha stalked closer to them as gracefully as a predator with a single ball of snow. Souta set to throwing while Kagome kept their pile high.

Inuyasha dove to the right on Kagome's side and swung his arm as if he was throwing a curve-ball. And curve it did, smacking her shoulder with a lingering sting.

“He breached our area. Run!” Souta yelped and hopped over the wall with Kagome following shortly behind.

They played for well over an hour. The score came up to Inuyasha having hit them ten out of ten times. Kagome was sure that if she pulled her shirt up, she would see welts all over her body with the force Inuyasha threw. Souta was using her as a human shield more often than she was.

The game ended when Inuyasha's projectile slapped her retreating ass with the force of Sango's hand whipping across Miroku's face. “Inuyasha!” she shrieked as she whirled on him. The half-demon paled, dropping his next weapon. “Sit boy!”

He dropped like a stone and Kagome eyed him with disdain. He angled up his head to glare at her. “It was an accident, Wench!”

“It still hurt!” she crossed her arms, feeling her face heat uncomfortably in the cold.

Inuyasha glowered, grumbling under his breath as he stood and shook the snow from his clothes.

Souta sniffed as he came up to their side. “Let's get inside. Mom promised hot chocolate.”

Inuyasha sighed when Kagome stormed away before smirking at the snow that still stuck to the back of her pants. He quickly caught up to her, easily falling in stride. “Oi, it really was an accident,” he affirmed.

The girl hugged herself against the cold as Inuyasha opened the door to her house. She would take his low tone as an apology, since the half-demon rarely said 'sorry'. “...Forget about it.”

“Mistletoe!” Souta shouted in joy as his sister and Inuyasha walked through the doorframe.

“What?” Inuyasha questioned as he looked back at the beaming boy to Kagome's stunned stare. He followed her gaze up to the single branch of mistletoe tied with a red ribbon.

“Mom! You did this on purpose!” Kagome snapped as she looked inside the house just as her mother walked by with a smile.

“Nonsense, Kagome. You know I always hang the mistletoe there,” the older woman chided gently as she polished a metal, yellow star in her hands. “You don't want to break tradition, do you?”

“Pucker up,” Souta made loud, unneeded kissing noises at them.

Inuyasha continued to glance between the branch and the Higurashi family, utterly confused. “What's so special about mistletoe?”

Kagome flushed furiously and glowered at her little brother, then at him. Quickly leaning up on her toes, Kagome pressed her lips against his tense ones. Inuyasha's eyes widened and his reflexive hands gripped her waist when she stumbled against him. One second passed, then two, all the while Inuyasha's heart hammered in his chest as he wondered what to do with his surrogate family watching. It was all too soon when she pulled away and stormed pass him with a muttered apology.

Souta laughed, “Did you see her face? She was totally red!”

Inuyasha stammered a incoherent response before quickly following after the girl. “Kagome!” He caught up to her just outside her bedroom, gripping her arm in his hand. “What was that all about?” he asked, blushing when he still felt the tingle of her mouth on his.

The schoolgirl carefully avoided his gaze. “It's a tradition to kiss underneath the mistletoe,” she murmured in answer. Looking up at him, he could still see the pretty pink painted on her cheeks, “Sorry. I-I should have told- asked you first.”

She was flustered, embarrassed, and humiliated. For what, he didn't know. All he did know that he wanted her to kiss him again. He glanced at her lips, then back to her dark eyes. “It's a tradition,” he repeated, his tone low and rough. “Is there any more mistletoes around that I should know about?”

Kagome dropped her gaze. “Nope. Not that I know of. So don't worry about accidents like that happening again.” She gave a small, wavering smile, trying to assure him. “Unless Souta decides to be a brat and moves it around.”

She doesn't want to kiss me, he realized with a defeated sigh. A few seconds passed before she looked up at him and he realized he still had a firm grip on her upper arm. Reluctantly, his hand slid down her sleeve only to catch hers in his. He had so many things to tell her, but was now even the time? When she regretted kissing him?

Her gaze softened and she gave his hand a squeeze. There was just too many obstacles in between them.

“Kagome! Come back down here and place the star on the tree!” Souta shouted from the base of stairs.

“Coming!” she replied back and brushed pass him, marking the end of their conversation.








It was getting late when Kagome got up from her desk, her study books put away, and gathered two pillows and her comforter from her bed.

“What are you doing?” Inuyasha asked as he stared at the snow falling steadily outside.

“It's a tradition I made myself, when I was younger,” Kagome replied in a hushed tone as she opened her bedroom door. “Follow me.”

Downstairs, while everyone was asleep, Kagome dropped both pillows just in front of the colorful Christmas tree. The dim lights decorating it changed color from red to green to blue to yellow then back to red, giving them enough light.

Inuyasha sat cross legged beside her and stared up at the decorated tree. Ornaments of every shape and color reflected the lights around the room, highlighting the golden star at the top. He glanced at Kagome, who stared at the tree with a far-away look in her eyes. A look he immediately didn't like. “What's this tradition of yours?” he asked quietly, not wanting to wake up her family.

Kagome blinked out of her thoughts and smiled at him. “When I was little, I always camped out next to the tree and waited for Santa Claus to come deliver presents.”

He cocked a dark brow. “Who's Santa?”

She didn't say anything for a moment. “A mythical being that lives at the North Pole- at the top of the world- and flies around the world once a year in a sleigh with magical reindeer to deliver presents to kids all over for Christmas.”

Inuyasha frowned. “People trust him and let him into their house?”

Kagome nodded. “He's not real. It's just something children like to believe in until they're older.” She spread out the blanket to cover her cold, bare feet. “Now I just like to sleep by the tree on Christmas for old time's sake.” Laying down on her belly, she patted the other pillow in invitation.

The half-demon felt heat rise to his cheeks and stayed still for a long moment. Finally, he laid down on his stomach- not before tugging the pillow a couple inches away from hers.

Kagome silently sighed as she gazed up at the star on top of the Christmas tree, where it glittered and reflected the lights slowly changing. “It looks nice, doesn't it?”

Inuyasha hummed a single note in response. “Still don't see what's the big deal 'bout it,” he mumbled as he pulled out the gift Kagome gave to him. “Can I open this now?”

She rolled her eyes and checked the clock on the wall. It was already pass midnight but she was hardly ready for sleep. Maybe it was because Inuyasha was right next to her this time to celebrate the holiday with her. Smiling, she bumped his shoulder with hers, making him look at her questioningly. “You can open your present now. It's technically Christmas.”

His claws immediately poked through the wrapping paper but, surprisingly, he took his time in uncovering it and opening the small white box. When the gift sparkled in the light, he sent her a confused look.

Kagome bit her bottom lip, slightly nervous that he wouldn't like it. “It's a friendship bracelet,” she explained quietly. “I have one just like it.” She pulled her right sleeve up to show hers. It had five silver charms around it, a heart, a tear, a key, a fang, and a dog-shaped charm with little purple shards in between each one. On his were five gold charms that included a wishing well, a clock, a lock, a flame, and another heart. The biggest one on hers was the half of a gold heart with the word 'Best' on it. On his silver piece: 'Friends'. Heat rose to her cheeks and she glanced away. “Some of the charms reminded me of the Feudal era and I wanted yours to remind you of my time.”

Inuyasha curiously looked at every charm, running his thumb over the small, opaque white shards between them before switching over to look at hers. “Like that locket? Before that mess with Kaguya?”

Kagome grinned when he remembered. “Yes,” her smile dropped. “But you lost that, didn't... you...?” she drifted off when he pulled out an all-too-familiar locket from around his neck. Her eyes widened as it glimmered just as new as when she bought it.

He saw her surprise and scoffed. "It's not like I lose things the second I get 'em.” He opened the locket to reveal the same pictures of their angry faces and smirked, “And, yeah, this is a pretty good reminder of you.”

Her lips curved up as she touched the open locket gingerly. “I thought you didn't want it,” she slid her gaze to his face.

He sniffed. “Well you wouldn't take it back. Should I have thrown it away instead?”

“No...” Kagome watched as he opened her palm and dropped both the locket and the bracelet in her hand before gently closing her fingers around them. A sharp pain poked her heart as she looked down at her hand with the gifts twinkling between her fingers. “You really don't want them?”

“No,” he answered, adding to the pain in her chest. “They're gonna end up damaged if they stay on me for long,” she felt him shrug and looked up at him. He gazed at her with a serious intensity that made her stop breathing for a second. “Besides, I don't need anything to remind me of you. You're not leaving me,” he said simply.

She looked away once again, blinking against her tears. “What if the well closes?” she whispered, voicing one of her biggest fears. If her link to the past closed her off, there would be no chance they could ever meet again. Even if Inuyasha lived to be over five-hundred years old, she doubted he would still find interest in her.

From the corner of her eye, she caught Inuyasha's hands balling into tight fists. “It won't,” he growled before falling silent. She heard him suck in a slow, deep breath. “Even if it did... it'd be your choice if you want to stay with me.”

Kagome glanced at him to find him glaring at the carpet with his chin rested on his crossed arms. He's assuming I would be on his side of the well if it seals.... she realized.

Inuyasha glanced at her and their eyes met. “I... want you to be with me... but your family...”

Kagome frowned. “You have Kikyou. My whole life is here-” she stopped herself. I don't want that to be true.

His gaze softened at Kikyou's name. “Kikyou... I met her today, earlier,” he said, not taking his gaze off her. “She's not my Kikyou anymore. Our relationship died when she sealed me... when she... died herself. Maybe when I go to hell with her, we could actually be together again...”

Kagome felt more tears prick her eyes but she didn't look away, just as he didn't as he searched her gaze. She definitely didn't want him to go to hell. Maybe he belonged in Kikyou's arms, but he didn't belong in the afterlife just yet.

“But,” he continued grimly, “The more I am with you and the others, the more I feel like I don't want to leave. I... I broke my vow to Kikyou today. I swore that when Naraku's dead, I will follow her without a second thought. Now, I want to avenge her death and move on... with you.”

She finally closed her eyes against his stare and nodded. She felt so thankful and glad that she moved to hug him fiercely. He swiftly rolled on his side just when her hands closed on his haori, tugging her closer to him and gently placing his lips on hers.
.
Kagome's eyes snapped open and quickly fell close as his hand splayed against her back. Her tears finally fell in two drops of happiness as she responded to his kiss eagerly. When he pulled away, she hid her blushing, tear-stained face in his haori. “I love you, Inuyasha,” she whispered against him.

“Keh. I know that, Wench,” Inuyasha softly replied, causing her to give him a withering look. “Do you really think I didn't notice the countless signs?”

Kagome blushed once again, her hands closing into tighter fists. “Do you love me?” she asked, watching him for any hesitance.

“ 'Course, I do,” he rolled on his back, making half of her body rest against him and sighed. “We can't exactly make this known. Naraku's always targeting my weakest points. He'd use love against me, just like he did with Kikyou.”

Kagome silently nodded. As long as she was with the knowledge that Inuyasha wanted to stay with her, she was fine with hiding it for a while.

She felt his arm tighten around her. “We're going to have to make trips here more often. Can that count as my Christmas present to you?”

She laughed. “I like the sound of that.”

Inuyasha sighed, this time with content as he closed his eyes. “G' night, Kagome.”

Kagome closed her eyes as well, softly inhaling the scent of him and the decorated tree above them. She had his heart, just as he always had hers. “Thank you, Inuyasha.”
FOR KMOATON: Assault on December 24th by ED Staff
Darkness fell over the North Pole, covering the band of conspirators as they planned out their coup. A group of Santa's elves had decided they were tired of toy making and caroling all year long and wanted out. After all, Santa had let Hermie give up making toys to become a dentist; so why couldn't they try to get out from under the fat man's thumb? They were currently arguing the best way to overthrow him on Christmas Eve.

"That plan's stupid, Jingles," a particularly fat elf said, "first off, where are we going to get bazookas? Secondly, how are we going to get big enough to fire those bazookas?"

"Quiet!" a voice shouted from the back of the room. All heads turned to one of the elder elves, "This is no use, there's no human weapon that will take down Santa."r32;
"Then what do we do Finch?" another elf asked snottily.

The elder elf unfolded a piece of paper that had the layout of a shrine in Japan, he looked each of his fellow traitors in the eyes, "Have you ever heard of something called the Shikon no Tama?"

----

"I can't believe I let you talk me into this," Inuyasha grumbled as Kagome dragged him by the hand to the shrine.

"Stop being so grumpy, it'll be fun!" Kagome replied.

"But do I have to wear this stupid hat?" Inuyasha groused, indicating the red Santa cap the Miko had forced him to wear.

"You do if you want me to blow off my tests for a whole month to go shard hunting. That was the deal," Kagome pointed out to her Hanyou companion. "Now don't worry about the hat and just concentrate on enjoying yourself, my family's been looking forward to celebrating your first Christmas with you."r32;
"Whatever," Inuyasha grumbled as Kagome opened the door to the shrine.

"Merry Christmas everybody! Look who I brought!" Kagome shouted as they passed through the doorway. Inuyasha flushed a little and buried his face in his hands, embarrassed at the big deal Kagome was making about him coming.

"Kagome!" Mrs. Higurashi cried out in greeting, smiling as she noticed Inuyasha had decided to join them after all, "Inuyasha! I'm so happy you decided to join us."

"Inu-nii-chan!" Souta shouted enthusiastically as he leaped at his favorite Hanyou, "Are you staying for Christmas?"

By now Inuyasha was used to the hyper boy's hero worship and easily caught him, "Yeah kid," he replied. "Kagome talked me into it."

"Don't make it sound like I forced you," Kagome said as she swatted Inuyasha playfully, "I didn't even have to use the rosary once to convince you!"

"Keh. So, what do we do on this Christmas thing anyway?"

----
r32;"Are you sure about this?" an elf asked their leader as the sun went down, "what do we know about this Shikon jewel anyway?"r32;
"Even though I don't know much about the jewel, I'm positive it will help us overcome our oppressor. I got a look at the Naughty And Nice List, and guarding the jewel has put this family in the Nice part big time; it must be very powerful," Finch replied. "We should get someone to sneak in and do some reconnaissance. "

The other elf eyed the rest of their army, "Let's send Jingles; teach him not to throw out stupid ideas about bazookas and nuclear bombs."

The elder elf nodded in agreement and called out to the short crowd, "Oh Jingles! Do we ever have a job for you!"

----

Jingles snuck into the shrine through an unlocked window, not making a sound. Not that it would have mattered, he could hear the family downstairs laughing and listening to Christmas music as they enjoyed their fried chicken. He snorted in disbelief; these people weren't even Christians, why would they be celebrating Christmas? All they did was add more of a workload to his brethren since now they had to make toys for Asia too. Well, he and his fellow elves would soon put an end to that!

He made his way downstairs, tiptoeing by a chubby cat that couldn't possibly care less about the sudden appearance of an elf in its home. He eyed the family trying to discern which one would have the jewel. His eyes fell on an old man; he was obviously the priest of the shrine, surely such a powerful object as the Shikon jewel would be in his possession. He also saw the Inuhanyou that had joined them, 'that could be a problem,' he noted to himself. He saw a knife rack on the kitchen counter behind the family, he'd just have to wait until their dinner was over before he armed himself.

"Get in and find out what you can, don't worry about casualties," that had been what he'd been told. Jingles grinned sadistically, he especially looked forward to the second part of that order. He'd been a little... jittery ever since Santa had given out an edict that they weren't allowed to make toys with sharp points or lead paint anymore.

----

The Higurashis had finished their dinner and gathered in their living room.

"What's with the tree?" Inuyasha asked, as he helped Kagome cover it with colorful glass balls and shiny rope.

"It's a Christmas tree!" Kagome said enthusiastically, "We decorate it, and when we're done we put Christmas presents underneath it to open on Christmas Day."

"I thought today was Christmas," Inuyasha said, confused.

"Today is Christmas Eve. Christmas Day isn't until tomorrow," Kagome explained.

"That still doesn't tell me why you have a tree in your living room, or why we're covering it in jewelry," Inuyasha pointed out.

"Look, it's tradition and it looks nice! Is that enough of a reason for you?" Kagome asked hotly.

"I guess. Freak out about it why don't you?" Inuyasha mumbled.

Jii-Chan walked over to the box of decorations to take out the Christmas lights when the elf decided to attack.

"Give it to me!" the elf shouted as he leaped at the old man's chest. "I want the jewel!"

"What the?" Jii-Chan's eyebrows rose in surprise and confusion as the elf felt around his robes trying to find the elusive jewel.

"Where is it?" the elf cried out.

"Hey! Who are you? You leave him alone," Kagome yelled at the intruder. Jii-Chan had finally recovered from his shock enough to try to wrestle the elf off of him.

The elf sneered at the girl and turned his attention to the old man. Well, the geezer was obviously resisting, so the elf felt he had no choice; he reached behind his back and pulled out the knife he'd stashed in his belt. Before any of the family could react he drove it to the hilt into the old man's side.

"That'll calm you down," the elf sneered at the man's look of pure pain. Now that the priest was in too much agony to resist, searching him for the jewel would be much easier.

"Jii-Chan!" Kagome cried out in panic as she watched the blood pool on the floor beneath him.

Inuyasha growled and instantly made his way to the evil little runt that had assaulted the crazy old man.

"What the Hell do you think you're doing?" the Hanyou growled as he snatched the elf up from its victim.

Instead of answering, the elf struggled against Inuyasha's iron grip. He futilely slashed the knife at the Hanyou's wrists, but was unable to cut through the fire rat armor. Inuyasha rolled his eyes and decided he'd had enough. The little monster had just tried to kill Kagome's grandfather after all. He quickly snapped the elf's neck and dropped him lifelessly to the floor.

Kagome and Mrs. Higurashi had rushed over to Jii-Chan with Kagome's first-aid kit, and were working quickly to stop the bleeding. Luckily it was a pretty minor stab wound.

Souta looked down at the small corpse lying on the floor. He was completely dazed, "Did Inu-nii-chan just kill one of Santa's elves?"

Inuyasha idly looked out the living room window, his sharp eyes caught something in the shadows. There were more of them! It looked like an entire army.

"Wench, it looks like there's a lot more of 'em out there. We might have a bit of a war on our hands."

----

"Sir," one of the sentries came up to the elf who'd masterminded the assault, "it looks like Jingles fell to the Hanyou."

"He killed Jingles?" Finch gasped, "That bastard!"

"What do we do?"

"It seems we underestimated the nastiness of this family because of their position on the Nice List," the elf mused. "Surround the house, don't let any of the monsters escape. I'll think up a new battle plan."

----

"Crap, they're flanking us," Inuyasha cursed as he watched the elves attempt to be stealthy while they surrounded the shrine.

"What's the big deal? You got rid of that one easily enough," Souta said, pointing to the elf on the living room floor.

"The big deal is there's so many of them," Inuyasha answered. "I can't even use the Kaze no Kizu without having to worry about destroying half the shrine."

"We need a plan," Kagome said, "after everything we've fought and been through I really don't want to go down because of Santa's elves."

"Working on it," Inuyasha mumbled as he continued watching out the window. "How's the old man?"

Jii-Chan groaned in pain, but Mrs. Higurashi answered, "It'd be better if we could get him to the hospital, but he should be fine if nothing else attacks him."

Inuyasha shook his head in frustration, "They're getting ready to attack, I can feel it... and they want the Shikon no Tama.... Dammit!" he turned to Kagome, "This shrine has too many entrances, we need to seal some up. Grab some of the old man's ofuda and make them actually work. Get a barrier on every window and door that's not in this room. If they're going to get in and attack, we can at least encourage them to go where we want them to."

Kagome nodded and ran off to Jii-Chan's bedroom. Inuyasha then turned to Souta and Mrs. Higurashi, "You two, get some weapons. Kagome's barriers won't last forever, we're going to need your help if any slip inside," he ordered.

"What about Jii-Chan?" Souta asked.

Inuyasha looked down at his sword before he detached the scabbard, "Don't worry about the crazy geezer, kid, I'll make sure he's protected."

As the mother and child went to search for household items they could use for weapons Inuyasha walked over to the old man who was laying on the sofa. He gently placed Tessaiga over the man's body and clasped one of Jii-Chan's hands over the hilt. "Whatever you do, don't let go of the sword. Its barrier will protect you if anything goes wrong."

"You got the ofuda ready yet wench?" Inuyasha yelled out.

"Just found it!" Kagome replied.

"Please tell me you keep a bow and arrow here to practice with," Inuyasha half pleaded.

Kagome came back into the living room, with a bow slung over her shoulder, "Really, Inuyasha. How well do you know me?"

----

"I think we've been made," an elf reported. "They've started placing barriers over all entrances except the main one."

"He's trying to bottleneck us..." Finch mused. "I want half of our men out back working on breaking one of the barriers, the rest of us will attack from the front like they expect. When we've penetrated the back they'll be too tired to fight back and will give up the jewel for sure."

"You magnificent bastard," the lead elf cried in the direction of the shrine, "I read your book!"

"Really? I didn't know you were much of a reader," the younger elf said.

The lead elf looked at his companion disdainfully, "Shut up and get to work."

----

"Here they come Inu-nii-chan!" Souta yelled from his spot in front of the window.

"Alright, Kagome, that's your cue!" Inuyasha directed.

Kagome opened the door and started firing arrows at the wave of attacking elves. Inuyasha watched with pride as Kagome felled every elf she aimed for, before noticing she was quickly burning through her supply of arrows.

"Let's switch, Kagome!" Inuyasha yelled.

Kagome nodded and the two quickly exchanged places. Luckily, Kagome had managed to do quite a bit of damage to the elves' numbers.

"Sankon Tessou!" Inuyasha cried, leaping from the doorway, landing in the middle of a swarm of elves. He slashed and stomped in a fury, dispatching as many of the little menaces as he could, with Kagome firing an arrow at the occasional elf that managed to slip by.

"Looks like the first wave is done," Souta informed the others as Inuyasha started backing into the house. "By the way sis, you've only got two arrows left."

Kagome quickly looked at her quiver and let out a rare curse, "Dammit!"

"This isn't good," Inuyasha grumbled, "there's just too many of the damn little guys."

Everyone jumped as they heard a loud bang come from the back of the house. Kagome swooned briefly before catching herself.

"They're punching a hole through my barrier, I can feel it!" she warned.

"Crap," Inuyasha smacked the wall in frustration. He caught sight of Kagome's mostly depleted supply of arrows. "Double crap!"

Kagome pushed her way passed Inuyasha and placed an ofuda over the main door, "I've got an idea!"

"A good idea?" Souta asked hopefully.

"No idea," Kagome replied, "Inuyasha pick up Jii-Chan, we need to get to the basement."

----

Meanwhile, up at the North Pole, a huffing Santa was finishing loading up his sleigh. It seemed like half of his elves had decided to take the day off. 'Oh well,' he shrugged. They had been working so hard lately, he wouldn't begrudge them their first Christmas Eve off. He was about to take off when he was stopped by his wife.

"Santa baby! Wait!" Mrs. Clause yelled.

"What is it dear?" Santa turned to his wife, expecting a goodbye kiss instead of the parchment that was thrust into his face.

"I was cleaning the workshop, when I came across this. I think I know where all the elves went."

Santa's eyes widened as he looked over the parchment, "Oh no," he murmured. He quickly scrambled onto his sleigh.

"Now Dasher, now Dancer, now Prancer and Vixen! On Comet, on Cupid, on Donner and Blitzen! To Japan! To the Higurashi Shrine! Now dash away, dash away, dash away all!"

----

Inuyasha jammed Tessaiga into the pantry doorway, enacting the sword's barrier and protecting the Higurashis inside. He turned to Kagome, "I hope you know this is a bad plan. Like fire the crows foot at the crow bad."

"I know," Kagome admitted, "but it beats no plan."

"I guess," Inuyasha conceded. "And Kagome, in case this works and we get out of here alive, you and me are going to have a little talk about what you consider a nice, peaceful holiday."

"Just shut up and wait for my signal," Kagome said as she handed Inuyasha their portion of the jewel.

"At least this time the shards will be restricted to one room," Inuyasha mused. His ears twitched at the pitter patter of tiny feet, "They're here..."

The door burst open and the elves stampeded over each other trying to get down the stairs.

"See what I mean? They know they're beat! They're surrendering!" the lead elf cried out. "Give us the jewel and we'll let you and your family live! Even though you've killed about a hundred of us!"

"You want the jewel? You can have it! Now Inuyasha!"

Inuyasha tossed the jewel to the elf at the top of the stairs, silently praying for Kagome to hit her target.

Kagome watched the jewel's ascent, waiting for the perfect moment when it seemed to hang in the air. Inuyasha had set her up perfectly, now she needed to come through with the goal, "Hit the mark!"

The elves could only watch in shock and horror as a glowing pink arrow hurtled its way toward the precious jewel.

"No!" Finch screamed as he leaped to catch the jewel before it could be pierced by the arrow.

Inuyasha grabbed Kagome and dove to the ground, covering her with his body to protect her from the blast.

Finally silence reigned and the dust settled. Kagome and Inuyasha chanced a look at the basement entry way.

"Oh thank God," Kagome muttered, the blast from shattering the jewel had slain all the elves.

Inuyasha stood and pulled Tessaiga from the doorway. He poked his head into the pantry, "Kagome's plan worked; we did it!"

"Inuyasha..." Kagome said a bit nervously.

"What?" Inuyasha said, but all Kagome could do was point at the jolly red figure at the top of the stairs. His belly was jiggling like a bowlful of jelly.

"You were a mean one, Mr. Finch," Santa said sadly. Kagome watched as he waved his hand around and sparkles seemed to fly toward his grasp. Santa opened his hand, and resting in his palm was Kagome's portion of the jewel.

"I believe this is yours, young lady."

Kagome numbly climbed the steps, reluctantly accepting the offered jewel.

"I suppose a plane that loops the loop isn't going to cut it this year will it?" Santa said wryly.

----

"I'm sorry your first Christmas was ruined like this," Kagome apologized as she slipped into bed.

"You know just because we spent our night fighting off homicidal beings bent on world domination, doesn't mean my night was ruined. It was normal," Inuyasha said, leaning against the wall.

"But still," Kagome pouted, "all I wanted was for you to be able to relax for one night."

"You know," Inuyasha said, with a cunning look in his eye, "that Santa guy offered me anything I wanted for Christmas. Since his elves ruined my first one and all. So he asked me what I wanted most for Christmas."

"Oh?" Kagome said, watching the Hanyou warily as he slinked over to her bed. Knowing him, Kagome bet he wished for something like being able to take his rosary off and put it on her or something.

"It's funny, because the only thing I could think of was that all I wanted for Christmas was you," Inuyasha said seductively as he climbed into the bed to unwrap his present.
FOR DANGERSQUE: Family For the Holidays by ED Staff
Winter Break was fast approaching and Kagome couldn’t be more excited. Her dorm room was as decorated for Christmas as such a small, cramped space would allow, and she kept trying to cram more decorations in. She had bought a tiny pine tree in a little, clay pot to sit on her desk, and she decorated it with tiny ornaments and lights she found at a hobby shop. Twinkle lights wrapped around her window, and she had painstakingly colored and cut out Santa, snowmen, gingerbread men and reindeer, and taped them all over her walls. Watching her teeter on a ladder to hang more twinkle lights around the walls of her room, Inuyasha waited for her to lose her balance and fall.

“You know you have to take that shit down in two weeks. I don’t know why you’re even bothering.” Sure he was grumpy, but lately Inuyasha had been grumpier than usual. They had been friends since freshman year and an item for the last two, and Kagome had learned to overlook his gruffness. This year, though, was worse than usual.

“Oh, poo, Inuyasha. Quit being such a grump ass. Can’t you enjoy the holidays just a little? If nothing else the decorations are always so pretty.” Kagome turned and sighed, seeing her friend sitting across her bed leaned against the wall. Leaving her lights hanging haphazardly she climbed down the ladder and went to sit next to him.

“Look, I know it sucks, and your parents are being unreasonable, but that’s no reason to not enjoy the holidays. It’s a time of year to be thankful for the supportive friends and family you do have, so fuck ‘em.” Listening to Kagome curse always made Inuyasha chuckle, and this time was no acceptation. She nudged his shoulder playfully with her own.

“Come on. Help me finish hanging these lights, then we’ll watch a movie.”

Inuyasha groaned. He knew what movie was coming. Smiling wickedly, Kagome nodded. “Awww, yeah, you know the one. And luckily TBS is playing it back to back to back today.” Of course they were. What holiday wasn’t complete with a continuous playing of A Christmas Story? Inuyasha groaned.

Several hours later found Inuyasha and Kagome sharing a pizza to the flicker of almost 200 twinkle lights while they watched the marathon run of Kagome’s favorite Christmas movie. He looked at her out of the corner of his eye, smiling as she sat enthralled. It was like she’d never seen the movie before. Her adoration warmed his heart. Feeling the vibration of his phone ringing in his pocket, Inuyasha took it out and groaned when he looked at the screen. Peeking over his shoulder Kagome recognized the number.

“Answer it.”

“I don’t want to talk to them.”

“Inuyasha, it’s the holidays, and they’re your family.”

“They sure weren’t worried about that when they disowned me for changing my major. You would have thought I robbed a bank or something! And they aren’t even paying for my tuition so it’s not like they have anything to say about it to begin with.” Looking darkly at his phone Inuyasha made a decision. “You know what? Fuck ‘em.”

“Well, maybe not exactly. You do need to face them eventually, you know.” Kagome began to worry her lip between her teeth.

“Yeah, well, not today.” Smiling at his best girl Inuyasha leaned in for a kiss.

Knowing Inuyasha wasn’t going home for Christmas Kagome invited him to come home with her instead, and spend the holiday with her family. She couldn’t bear the thought of him muddling around his apartment, alone, on the most family friendly day of the year. She was going to make this the best damn Christmas Inuyasha ever had or she would kill him in the process!

The day after finals was spent doing laundry and packing. Finally, Inuyasha’s truck was loaded and they were leaving the university in their rear view mirror. Looking over at her love, Kagome put her hand on his thigh and gave it a friendly squeeze.

“I’m so excited you’re coming home with me for the holiday! The semester has been grueling, and this is just what we need before we take on our senior year. Momma is so looking forward to having you around, too. Sota has been making her crazy the closer Christmas gets, and now that he’ll be on Winter Break, too, she needs another guy around to help keep him busy.”

“Kagome, I’m a good deal older than your brother. You may not want me to keep him busy, considering the things I like to do to keep myself preoccupied.” With this Inuyasha ran his hand up under Kagome’s skirt, making her squeal.

“Ok, you got me. I don’t want you showing him any of that sort of thing. But you can keep him company, play games with him, help get the shrine ready for the holiday traffic, that sort of thing.”

“Oh! So I’m free, slave labor!”

“Well, maybe. But I’m sure I can find a way to repay you if you behave.” Kagome gave Inuyasha a peck on the cheek.

“Or if I misbehave.” Inuyasha spared Kagome a wink, making her blush.

Upon arriving at the shrine Inuyasha brought their bags up to the house, and followed Kagome into the house.

“Kagome! I wasn’t expecting you so early! I haven’t even finished supper yet. Hello, Inuyasha. It’s so good to see you. So, how was the drive? Did your finals go ok?” Mrs. Higurashi greeted the couple with warm hugs, ushering them into the house. She chatted on about some of the happenings around the shrine, and what Sota had been up to at school. Taking Kagome back into the kitchen, Mrs. Higurashi directed Inuyasha to take their bags up to her room, and get himself settled into the guest room. While he made himself useful, the ladies went to finish supper.

“So,” Mrs. Higurashi began, “how are things with his family?”

Kagome kept her hands busy stirring the various pots on the stove. “Not so well. They still aren’t talking, and he’s pretty bitter toward them. He feels they are being too judgmental considering he’s paying for his education. It bothers him, but he’s decided to stand his ground. I just wish he wouldn’t be so damn grumpy all the time. He’s worse than usual the closer Christmas gets.”

“Maybe you should do something nice for him.” Mrs. Higurashi knew her daughter would leap at the idea. She just had to prod her a bit. Before saying anything else she began to hum The 12 Days of Christmas.

“Oh, Momma, I know! I can do a 12 Days of Christmas thing! Every day for the next 12 days I can do something nice for him. Like make his favorite breakfast, or rent his favorite movie. You know, nothing big, just a sweet gesture to make him feel good. And I have the perfect gift to give him for Christmas, too!” Kagome clapped her hands together and bounced, excited to have a purpose. Mrs. Higurashi smiled her secret smile, knowing her daughter wouldn’t fail.

The first few days were rough ones for Kagome. Inuyasha was immediately suspicious as her good deeds started piling up. She pulled out all she knew about Inuyasha, making his favorite breakfast, rubbing his feet, drawing him a hot bath, making his favorite Christmas cookies, renting his favorite movie, letting him spend the day watching his favorite anime, taking him to his favorite ramen shop for lunch, and anything else she could think of in the days leading up to Christmas. After 12 days of the little things she was doing for him, he couldn’t take the pressure anymore.

Sitting on the couch on Christmas Eve, Inuyasha and Kagome were snuggled under a blanket sipping hot toddies be the twinkling of the tree lights. Sitting his mug aside, Inuyasha eased back onto the couch, putting his arm around Kagome’s shoulder. Her family was in bed and they finally had a moment for him to ask what was going on.

“So, Kagome, what do you have to tell me?”

Surprised, Kagome turned to her right to look at him. “What are you talking about?”

“All the good deeds and little things you’ve been doing for me lately. What’s the bad news? Are you pregnant?” A look of terror briefly flashed across Inuyasha’s face.

“What?! God, no!” Laughing, Kagome sat her mug aside, and turned her body on the couch to face Inuyasha. “You’ve been so grumpy. I wanted to do something nice for you to cheer you up. Didn’t you like it?”

“Oh, no, I did. I’ve just been waiting for the bomb to drop over the last few days. I thought you were buttering me up for something big.” Leaning in Inuyasha kissed Kagome.

Smiling, Kagome replied, “No, not at all.” She was glad he couldn’t smell a lie.

The next morning found the family gathered around the Christmas tree, adults with coffee, and Sota with pure adrenaline.

“Come on! Come on! Come on! What are we waiting for?!” The boy was practically bouncing off the walls waiting for presents to be handed out. Mrs. Higurashi laughed.

“Ok, Sota! You can play Santa, now hand out some presents so we can get started.”

In a little more than an hour everything had been unwrapped, Sota was asleep in his pile of goodies, and the adults were enjoying a quiet reprieve. As they chatted about how to spend the day, a knock at the door caught their attention. Everyone exchanged quizzical looks before Kagome gave a shrug and offered to answer the door.

Her family slowly followed her to the door, Inuyasha coming up behind. After inviting her guests in, Kagome turned and introduced them to her family.

“Momma, Grandpa, this is Mr. & Mrs. Taisho, Inuyasha’s parents.”

From the back of the group they heard, “What the Hell, Kagome?” Inuyasha stepped between Mrs. Higurashi and Kagome’s Grandfather to stand in front of his girlfriend. “What are they doing here?”

“Inuyasha, please don’t be angry. I couldn’t let the holiday go by without you seeing your family. It’s Christmas! I’m glad you came with me for the holiday, but you should spend some of it with your family, too.”

For the first time during the entire Winter Break Inuyasha gave Kagome his most genuine smile. Leaning in, he gave her a kiss on the cheek and whispered into her ear, “Thank you for such a wonderful gift.”

Kagome knew they wouldn’t work everything out, but she knew she had given Inuyasha and his family a push in the right direction.
FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff
Author's Notes:
Part 1 of 4
"Oh you.... You.... You.... OSUWARI!" Kagome screamed, her face flushed bright red as she watched the Hanyou jerk face plant onto the frozen ground. "I can't believe you!"

The teenage Miko stomped off in a fury, grumbling about stupid, insensitive jerks. Inuyasha spat a mouthful of snow out of his mouth, and shook his head.

"Hey, get back here bitch!" Inuyasha screamed at the retreating girl, and struggled against the force pulling him to the ground. "Who said you could go? We have shards to find!"

Kagome just ignored the temperamental boy screeching at her and strode away with her head held high; why she had wanted that idiot to join her for Christmas was beyond her.

Inuyasha grumbled to himself and pushed himself from the ground, only to feel a thunk on the back of his head. "Ow! What the fuck, Monk?"

Miroku shook his head and walked away, inspecting his staff for the crack that the idiot's head had probably just caused.

"Nice," Sango spat sarcastically at the fallen Inuhanyou.

"Why do you always have to be such a jerk?" Shippou called from the safety of Sango's shoulders.

"Keh, stupid girl," Inuyasha muttered. "Get back here Kagome!" he shouted in the direction of the well.

He growled at the disobedient girl and stomped off in her direction; the nerve! They had jewel shards to find and a Naraku to kill, they didn't have time for Kagome to take a few days off to go to her time for some stupid holiday!

He stomped his way to the well, a man on a mission. He was going to give that stupid wench a piece of his mind! He was going to drag her back, kicking and screaming, if he had to! Then he'd block the well, and find some way to always keep her with him, right where she belonged! He barely heard metal jingling faintly in the distance.

A call came quietly from the forest, "Inuyasha..."

Inuyasha spun around looking for the source, "Huh?"

"Inuyasha..."

"Who's there?" he asked, slowly entering the snow-covered wood.

"Inuyasha..."

"Yes, yes, I heard ya already!" Inuyasha yelled into the trees. He stumbled forward into a huge snowdrift as a thick metal chain wrapped itself around his ankle. He glared down at his foot in disgust, "Very funny Shippou."

He slowly rose to his feet, only for the chain to pull his balance out from under him. "Ack!"

The faint jangling slowly became louder as a figure emerged from the trees. Inuyasha's eyes widened in shock before they narrowed and flashed red.

"Oh, hell no! I am not falling for this again!" He yelled.

His mother's face smiled sadly as she beckoned him, the chains around her swinging with the movement, "Come on son."

Inuyasha shook his head stubbornly at the familiar vision, "Get away from me! Sesshoumaru isn't fooling me this time!"

Inuyasha's mother swung her arms forward, wrapping the chains around her son's shoulders. "I said to come!" she bellowed as she yanked the chains forcing Inuyasha to his feet.

"Fuck off! He can't have Tessaiga!" Inuyasha bellowed as he futilely clawed at the chains to break them.

"This has nothing to do with your brother," the woman said with a long sigh, "this has everything to do with you."

She turned to her son, brushing her hand gently against his cheek, "We're trying to save you..."

"Save me? From what?" Inuyasha snorted in disbelief, "there's nothin' on this Earth that can hurt me!"

Inuyasha's mother raised an eyebrow in disbelief, her expression saying 'Oh really?'

"Well, not badly enough to make a ghost visit me, anyway," Inuyasha clarified.

"There is one thing..." the ghost trailed off, "it's you."

"It's me? What's that supposed to mean?" Inuyasha asked in bewilderment.

"You're about to have three visitors, Inuyasha, they'll explain what I mean," his mother answered. "Please pay them heed, for the both of us."

Inuyasha let himself be dragged off by the woman claiming to be the spirit of his mother, the silence only interrupted by the annoying clinking of the chains. Finally the noise got to Inuyasha, he had to ask.

"Keh, what's with the chains?"

His mother paused, and turned to look at him, "They tie me to this plane; a constant reminder of why I'm not allowed to be at rest."

"Now I know you ain't my mother! She was the best person I knew, there's no way-"

Inuyasha's mother interrupted her son, putting a hand over his mouth.

"The last years of my life were spent trying to make you as happy as possible. I knew you'd have a hard life when I was gone... I just didn't expect us to be parted so soon. I've had to watch you suffer, unable to help, unable to comfort.... I'm chained down, unable to move on because of your sadness."

Inuyasha felt a tear move down his cheek and hurriedly wiped it away, "Sorry."

His mother ignored the apology and continued, "It's only recently that they've started to fall away; when you were awoken."

A small smile formed on the Hanyou's face, "Kagome..."

A link separated itself from its brothers, forgotten in the snow.

"You're in danger of losing her, don't let that happen," his mother warned. She placed a gentle kiss to his forehead, "Good luck."

It took Inuyasha a few moments to realize his mother was fading back into the darkness of the forest. He sprinted after her, calling.

"Mother! Mother! Come back! Please!" he shouted, not bothering to wipe away the tears that he knew were flowing. He ran after her retreating form until he collapsed to his knees.

"Please..." he pleaded weakly.

"And all this time I thought I was the emotional one!" a familiar voice taunted.
FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff
Author's Notes:
Part 2 of 4
"What the fuck?" Inuyasha jumped and turned to his right, coming face to face with... his face. Well, his human face, anyway.

"Well, this is awkward," the human him muttered, reaching up to dry his Hanyou counterpart's cheeks with his haori.

Inuyasha sat stunned for a moment before he hastily brushed the human's hands away, "Get offa me!"

"I suppose you know why I'm here," the human started.

"I know exactly why you're here! I'm having concussion induced hallucinations because Kagome sat me, and then Miroku hit me harder than usual! Now if you'll excuse me, I hafta get checked out by Kaede!" Inuyasha tried to rudely brush passed his human self.

The human grabbed the Hanyou by the back of the collar and tugged him back, "Not gonna happen."

"Keh, says who?" Inuyasha shot back.

"Look, I'm one of three people that I know can match you for stubbornness; and one of 'em just went 500 years into the future. You're stuck with me."

"No I'm not!" Inuyasha snarled as he swung his fist at the annoying human. The human Inuyasha barely had time to duck out of the way of the haymaker.

"That's it," the human Inuyasha growled, "Osuwari!"

Inuyasha readied himself to meet the ground, but instead a brilliant blue flash engulfed the two men. His hair flew in front of him like he was being pulled backwards at a crazy high velocity.

"What the hell is going on?" He screamed at the human him, barely able to hear over the wind rushing passed his ears.

"We're taking a ride down memory lane," the human yelled back. "Get ready, we're stopping right about..."

Suddenly everything screeched to a halt, flinging Inuyasha backwards, making him roll into the wall of a hut.

"Now," the human finished lamely. "Don't worry, you'll get used to it."

Inuyasha blinked his eyes and let himself be helped up by the human. The human Inuyasha brushed the dust off the Hanyou's clothes.

"This place looks familiar," Inuyasha muttered to himself as he looked around the simple hut. He walked over to a tapestry that was hanging on the wall, "I remember this. This is-"

"That's right, our childhood home," the human finished for him. "You probably remember this night as well..."
"The worst night of our lives..." Inuyasha muttered.

----

A beautiful, regal woman strode into the room, trying to hush her crying child, "Shh, it's okay Inu. It's okay," she murmured, planting a kiss on the boy's forehead.

"But... but... they said..." the little boy tried to get out, only to be interrupted by his own crying.

"Never mind what they said. I'm here and I'm not going to let anything happen to you. You're the most important thing in the world to me. You know that, right?"

Inuyasha wiped his tears away with tiny hands and nodded.

"Now be a big, strong boy and remember, mommy will always love you," the woman said, stroking the small boy's ears.

Inuyasha's sniffles gradually slowed down.

"I love you too mommy."

----

"We don't have to watch this do we?" Inuyasha asked the human. "We both know what happens, there's no reason..."

The human Inuyasha closed his eyes and set his jaw determinedly.

"I'm sorry, we have to see this through. We were such a happy child; you have to understand how we turned so bitter."

"Keh, I know what happened! Life happened," Inuyasha protested. "What're you trying to prove by showing me this shit? You trying to break me or something?"

The human Inuyasha looked at the Hanyou sadly, "We're not trying to break you.... We're trying to stop you from breaking Kagome."

----

"Izayoi! That thing is a menace, get rid of it!" A man bellowed. Inuyasha's mother stood her ground, not flinching.

"That 'thing' is my son and your grandson, and you will acknowledge him as such!" Izayoi screamed back.

"You-you dare raise your voice at me? After I took you and that disgrace in?" the man snarled.

Inuyasha flinched at the sound of a slap echoing through the hut.

"Give him over to me, daughter," the man seemed to plead. "Once we're rid of it, we can just pretend it never happened, you can once again be the hime you're supposed to be."

"Never," Izayoi spat back, earning another slap.

"So be it," the man sneered. "I won't be responsible for what happens."

Inuyasha finally popped out from behind his mother's back, "Grandpa, you leave my mommy alone!"

The old man's eyes took on a demented glaze as he shoved the boy back, "Shut up you little abomination! You are no grandson of mine!"

----

"I think that's enough of this memory," the human Inuyasha said abruptly, pulling the Hanyou along. "We don't need to relive the mob coming later that night."

"What the hell was the point of that?" Inuyasha screamed at the human.

"The holiday Kagome mentioned is about family, remember how she mentioned that before you blew up at her? Whether you realized it or not, it brought you back to this moment; the first time our family rejected us," the human explained.

"Yeah well, who can blame me?" Inuyasha replied harshly, "how can I not think about it with the way she's always dangling her great family in front of everyone like that? Taunting the rest of us with her crazy grandfather, and her wonderful mother, and her loving little brother who- oh no!" Inuyasha stopped himself as his ranting made him realize what memory the human was about to show him.

----

Inuyasha shivered and plastered himself against the tree, hoping the monster he could hear walking around wouldn't find him. He glanced up at the black sky, cursing the moon for its absence. If it only hadn't been his human night, he could have found a decent place to hide!

The footsteps were getting louder, and the child tried to burrow even further into the wooden tree trunk. The footsteps stopped mere feet in front of him. He timidly looked up to see a pale face framed with silver hair staring disdainfully at him. He could feel the malice as the Youkai spoke to him with a low icy tone.

"Pathetic," the Youkai sniffed. He reached down and roughly plucked the human boy from his hiding spot, dangling him at arm's length.

"So this is what father gave his life to protect. The fool," the Youkai sneered, staring into the child's eyes.

Inuyasha was so terrified he barely registered what the Youkai was saying. He took in the flowing silver hair that was like his own, the golden eyes that were also like his own, the crescent moon on the Youkai's forehead... his mother had told him about this Youkai.

"S-Sesshoumaru? Are you my brother?" the boy stammered.

Sesshoumaru's eyes narrowed and he backhanded the boy across the face, watching impassively as blood trickled from the corner of the boy's mouth. The dirty blood. He dropped the boy roughly to the ground, and pinned him there with a heavy foot to the chest.

"You are nothing but the evidence of father's weakness, little brother. Don't presume to address this Sesshoumaru as kin. When the whim strikes, this Sesshoumaru will rid the world of one more regrettable half-breed."

----

"You know, we're not the only person in our group with no family. But Sango, Miroku, and Shippou don't seem to mind the 'taunting,' as you put it," the human lectured, before walking off. "Now let's go look at something a little more recent."

Inuyasha just stared in disbelief as his child human self simply laid there with a footprint across his chest and watched his older brother walk off.

"Come on, stand up! Don't let the bastard win!" he tried to encourage his past self, even though he knew it was useless. He remembered staying in that position until the dawn came.

"Move it now!" the human yelled at him, drawing his attention. He reluctantly turned away from the stunned child and ran to catch up with himself.

"What other fun memories are you going to dredge up?" Inuyasha asked sarcastically.

The human just gestured in front of him.

Inuyasha rolled his eyes, "Of course..."

----

"I'll make it simple. If you want to live, hand over the jewel," Inuyasha said menacingly, showing off his claws.

"Do you think I'm going to be gentle, little girl?" Inuyasha questioned, making his way over to Kagome. He lunged, "Not when you stink of the woman who killed me!"

Kagome shrieked and barely jumped out of the way in time. She breathed heavily as the Hanyou turned to make another pass.

"Next time I'll cut you in half," Inuyasha promised.

"Hey! You're really trying to hurt me!" Kagome cried indignantly.

"Keh, no shit," Inuyasha snarked at the earlier scene.

"Shut up," the human Inuyasha growled.

"Now.... Die!" Inuyasha screamed as he made another attempt at slicking Kagome in half. This time decimating the tree that was beside her.

Suddenly, beads appeared around the Hanyou's neck.

"Kagome! Utter a subduing spell!" Kaede called from the safety of the trees.

"You? Subdue me? Don't make me laugh!" Inuyasha replied haughtily.

"Osuwari!"

Thump.

----

"I can't believe you're showing me this to make me be nicer to the wench," Inuyasha griped, his pride stinging at the reminder of that day.

"I can't believe you tried to kill her; and all over artificial power. Tell me, was it worth it?" the human version spat back. "We'll likely be wearing these damned beads until the end of time because of it!"

"I get it, we started off on the wrong foot. I'm a bastard. Everything's my fault! It's not like I haven't heard it all before!"

"You get nothing," the human growled, "as this next scene shows."

----

Inuyasha's eyes widened in shock at the sad and lonely girl sitting on the edge of the well.

"Kagome..." he murmured wistfully.

The girl stood up and addressed her Hanyou friend, "While on the other side, I was thinking a lot. About you Inuyasha, and Kikyou, and about me... Because I understand your feelings, I thought I couldn't stay here anymore..."

"Kagome," Inuyasha interrupted, "until I met you, I couldn't trust anybody. But you cried for my sake; you were always by my side, for me. I enjoy it when you're here- I feel at ease. But... I can't laugh and enjoy things... Kikyou died following after me. I have to risk my life for Kikyou in return."

Kagome nodded sadly, "I know I can't compete with Kikyou, because I'm alive. I thought a lot about Kikyou too.... We're totally different, even though I'm Kikyou's reincarnation. But I'm not Kikyou, my heart is my heart. But there is one thing we have in common... We both want to see you again, Inuyasha. I want to be with you Inuyasha, there's no way I can forget about you. I just want one thing," Kagome said, turning a hopeful gaze to Inuyasha, "can I still be with you? Can I be here for you?"

"You... still want to be here for me?" Inuyasha stammered in amazement.

"Yes," Kagome replied, standing to grab Inuyasha's hand.

"Look at that," human Inuyasha said, wiping a stray tear, "even after we broke her heart she still wants nothing more than to be with us!"

"Keh," Inuyasha replied petulantly, crossing his arms.

"Ooh, let's listen in on her thoughts!" the human suggested excitedly as they watched the Hanyou and Miko walk away hand in hand.

'The bond between Inuyasha and Kikyou will never be cut; I understand that. But you know Inuyasha, It wasn't by chance that you and I met either. I want you to live. I want you to be happy.'

----

Human Inuyasha spun around to his Hanyou counterpart, "What the fuck's wrong with you?" he scolded. "The girl's crazy about us, and you keep throwing it back at her!"

'Shut up!" Inuyasha mumbled.

"Not yet," the human declared, "if that memory didn't make you feel like a complete worthless bastard, this one from earlier today should do the trick!"

----

"I said no, dammit!" Inuyasha snarled at the flinching girl. "We're too busy looking for shards for you to go fuck around because of some dumb holiday!"

"It's not 'some dumb holiday!'" Kagome protested. "It's Christmas!"

"Unless this Christmas is going to get us jewel shards that you spread all over the goddamn country, I don't want to hear about it!" Inuyasha screamed back.

Kagome's eyes started to tear up, "I'm going, and that's final!" she declared. "I don't get to see my family very often as it is! And you're crazy if you think I'm going to skip out on the one day a year that's all about celebrating with family!"

"Well you're crazy if you think I'm letting you laze around while Naraku's out there getting more powerful!" Inuyasha shot back.

"Please, Inuyasha. Grandpa won't be around forever, I'm missing out on Souta growing up, and I just know my mother is too worried about me to enjoy the holiday," Kagome pleaded, trying to appeal to Inuyasha's better nature. "I could die searching for these shards, don't stop me from spending what time I have left with my family."

"I care!" Inuyasha said sarcastically.

Kagome clenched her fist, but couldn't hold herself back.

Smack!

Inuyasha stared at Kagome, rubbing his reddened cheek and absolutely stunned that she'd slapped him.

"You bastard," Kagome choked out. "Osuwari!"

Kagome sadly walked away, her head hanging down, "And to think I wanted you to come along," she said quietly.

"Wait, Kagome!" Inuyasha called out, pushing against the rosary's spell. "I didn't say you could leave!"

Kagome turned around and glared at the Hanyou who was stomping his way toward her. She was beyond mad, wanting nothing more than to hurt the insensitive Hanyou as much as she was hurting right now.

"Oh you.... You.... You.... OSUWARI!" Kagome screamed, her face flushed bright red as she watched the Hanyou jerk face plant onto the frozen ground. "I can't believe you!"

----

"Wow. I'm a heartless killer, and even I thought that was harsh," a gruff voice said from behind Inuyasha.

"Huh?" The Hanyou turned his attention from his human self.

A fist came out of nowhere, smacking Inuyasha in the jaw. The Hanyou flew into the air, landing flat on his back. He shook the cobwebs out of his head as his gaze slowly climbed and took in the form of the man that had knocked him on his ass. It started at the bare feet, travelled up the familiar red hakama, and into the demented red eyes and purple stripes across the Youkai's face.

"This'll be fun," the Youkai Inuyasha grinned.
FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff
Author's Notes:
Part 3 of 4
Youkai Inuyasha bent down and lifted the Hanyou version by the throat, "You know, I think beating on you will work better than the stupid human's plan to make you regret our past. Be a lot more fun too," he said as he threw Inuyasha headfirst into a tree.
r32;Inuyasha rubbed his head and glared at the approaching Youkai, "Son of a bitch!" he screamed leaping at his Youkai self.

The Youkai's eyes lit up with amusement as he dodged the Hanyou's punches and swipes, "That's your mother too, idiot."

The Youkai grabbed the Hanyou's wrist and twisted his arm painfully behind his back, "Submit, Hanyou, or I'll break it."

Inuyasha rolled his eyes, "Big deal," he shot back while smashing thethe back of his head into the bridge of the Youkai's nose.

The Youkai brought a hand up to his bleeding nose, smirking at his blood covered hands, "Hn, good one," then faster than Inuyasha could react the Youkai pounced on his Hanyou victim, pounding on his face with angry fists.

"Not," punch. "Nearly," punch. "Good," punch. "Enough!" punch.

The Youkai grasped the Hanyou by the throat, trying to strangle him. The Youkai was breathing hard, trying to catch his breath. The last thing Inuyasha saw before everything went black was his Youkai form's demented grin as the life was choked out of him.

----

"What the hell?" Inuyasha groaned as he came to. What was around his neck? He brought a hand up only to feel cold metal. 'A collar?' the Hanyou thought. He absently noted the sound of chains clinking.

Rough pulling on his neck startled Inuyasha out of his reverie and forced him to his feet. He looked down and stared at the heavy chain that was going from his neck to the hands of a very smug Youkai.

"'Bout time you woke up, I've been waiting forever!" The Youkai Inuyasha cheekily said.

"I'm gonna clobber you!" Inuyasha snarled and jumped at his adversary.

"This again?" the Youkai said with a bored tone of voice. He deftly dodged the Hanyou's punches, and once again twisted the Hanyou's wrists behind his back. This time Inuyasha felt cold metal shackles fall in place, binding his arms.

"You just couldn't cooperate and make this easy, could you?" the Youkai Inuyasha scolded, walking off and tugging the protesting Hanyou behind him. "Come on now boy, come here," the Youkai taunted, throwing in a few whistles.

"I wonder what our friends are doing," he mused. "Well, no time like the present to find out!"

----

Miroku sat down next to Sango, who was angrily polishing her Hiraikotsu.

"He come back yet?" the monk asked.

"Nope," Sango answered, unconsciously applying more pressure at the reminder of their idiot friend. "Can't wait for him to show his face though, I'm polishing this especially for him."

Miroku gave an incredulous look to Sango, "Look, I know he's stupid, and he deserves it for the way he's treated Kagome.... But is maiming him what she would want you to do?"

"Probably not," Sango reluctantly conceded before steeling her resolve, "but he doesn't care what she wants, so why should we?"

"Because it won't help him understand," Miroku answered, "and it will hurt Kagome if you injure him on her behalf."

Sango bowed her head, "I know you're right, but still.... You don't see her Miroku, every time Inuyasha thoughtlessly hurts her, when we have to go off and talk.... I'm afraid that soon she won't be able to take much more heartache; no one could."

"I know," Miroku said softly.

"And if I end up losing someone else because of a thoughtless Hanyou, I'm not gonna care how much it would hurt Kagome."

Miroku grasped Sango by the shoulder, "And I'll probably help you. But before it comes to that, maybe we should work on getting him to understand."

----

"Keh, they're sitting around talking shit, nothing unusual," Inuyasha snorted.

"This has to be a Hanyou thing. I refuse to believe we're this stupid," the Youkai deadpanned. "Were you listening at all? We could lose her!"

"Keh, she'll come back. Besides, what's the big deal, it's not like I want her around anyway."

The Youkai Inuyasha shook his head in disgust and cuffed the Hanyou on the ear. He walked away yanking harshly on Inuyasha's leash, "Come on then, let's go see her."

Inuyasha dug his heels in, resisting his Youkai half's force, "Wait, what? Why?"

The Youkai looked back over his shoulder, "Why not? It ain't no big deal, right?"

The Youkai turned his attention back to dragging the stubborn Hanyou to the Bone Eater's Well. Inuyasha gulped in dread as the time portal drew ever closer; what would he be shown next?

----

"Stupid Inuyasha," Kagome sniffed. She wiped her nose and rubbed her eyes before plastering on a fake smile. She took a deep breath and walked through her front door, "Hey everybody, I'm back!"

"Kagome!" her mother cried cheerfully, running up to her daughter and engulfing her in a hug, "Will you be staying for Christmas?"

Kagome nodded, smiling.

"And what about Inuyasha? I know you were going to invite him," Mrs. Higurashi asked.

"She wanted me to come?" Inuyasha said in amazement.

Youkai Inuyasha looked at him in amusement, slowing down his speech as if he was speaking to a small child, "Yeah. The Past Us showed you that."

"I thought she was just saying that," Inuyasha tried to justify. At the Youkai's disbelieving look, he continued, "What? She just says stuff sometimes."

"Okay, new rule; you're not allowed to talk anymore!" the Youkai decided.

"But-" Inuyasha said only to be interrupted.

"Do you want me to conjure up a muzzle?" the Youkai threatened. As Inuyasha shook his head, the Youkai pointed to the scene before them, "Then just shut up and watch."

"Well maybe he'll change his mind," Mrs. Higurashi tried to reassure her daughter, "he does have a few days, after all."

"Yeah, maybe," Kagome said half-heartedly. "Where's Souta?"

"He's sick with the flu, the poor thing. He's been cooped up in his room for a week."

"I think I'll go up and see him," Kagome decided and climbed the stairs to drop her stuff off at her bedroom before going to visit her little brother.

"There's nothing seriously wrong with the kid is there?" Inuyasha asked, "I mean, not that I care."

"He'll be fine in a day or so," the Youkai Inuyasha answered as he led the Hanyou up the stairs. "It's Kagome you should be worried about."

"Kagome? Why?" Inuyasha asked.

"Because..." the Youkai trailed off, gesturing to Kagome, who was staring forlornly at a box that was wrapped in bright red paper.

"I'm so stupid," Kagome scolded herself as tears started to flow from her eyes, "why would he want to spend time with me?"

She discarded the gift into the wastebasket and collapsed to her knees, her sobbing finally taking over her body.

"Kagome!" Inuyasha shouted, struggling against his chains to get to the sorrowful girl. "Goddammit, let me go! Kagome needs me!"

"Too bad, it's time for us to go," the Youkai said flippantly as he started dragging Inuyasha out the window.

"No dammit! I get it! I have to start treating Kagome the way she deserves, let me start doing it!" Inuyasha protested, fighting in vain against his Youkai counterpart.

"No," the Youkai grunted, while tying the chain to the Goshinboku. "You still got more to learn, and trust me, we've been going easy on you. Your little fits and your fights you've been doing with us? You don't wanna do with the next guy; he's a lot scarier than anyone you've ever met."

The Hanyou could only growl his displeasure at his Youkai, and pull against the chain to try to free himself.

"Chains? Really?" A calm voice said from the branches above. A tall figure leaped to the ground, his back to Inuyasha as he addressed the Youkai. "Is that quite necessary?"

"Keh, you do it your way, I'll do it mine," the Youkai huffed. "See ya, Hanyou, time for you to face your future."
FOR INUHANYOUNIKKIE: Holiday Spirits by ED Staff
Author's Notes:
Part 4 of 4
'Who the? Is that the future me?' Inuyasha wondered to himself as he stared at the figure before him. Inuyasha blinked a few times and noticed the lack of dog ears on the man's head. 'Well, that answers that.'

"Keh, who are you supposed to be?" Inuyasha asked.

"Don't you recognize me?" the man asked. "Don't you see the resemblance?"

"Look, it's been a bad day. I've been fighting with myself, with Kagome, you guys are making me relive shit I'd rather forget, so for the love of the Kami, just give me some straight answers," Inuyasha said wearily.

The man nodded, "I have a few names, the Inu no Taisho, Touga… I guess you can call me 'Dad.'"

"Great, can we get this over with so I can make things up with Kagome?" Inuyasha asked, resigned to his fate and not even caring anymore.

"It's important that you take this seriously, son," Touga lectured. "I don't think you quite grasp what you have to lose."

----

Kagome walked off from her three friends. She couldn't believe it, she had finally graduated high school! She idly thought back to three years before, a feeling of melancholy coming over her.

'Three days after the well on this side disappeared, the well reappeared in a pillar of light. And I returned with Inuyasha.'

Kagome's family called her name in joy, rushing to embrace their missing family member.

"Inuyasha saved me," Kagome had said to her mother. She turned to the Hanyou that was perched on the lip of the well, "Inuyasha, thank-"

Kagome watched in stunned disbelief as her Hanyou disappeared in a flash of light. Desperately, she rushed to the portal, trying to get back to him, crying out, "Inuyasha! Inuyasha!"

'Since then, the well no longer connected.'

Kagome came to a stop before the well, contemplating, 'The reason the well won't connect is probably because of my feelings. When the Bone Eater's Well disappeared and I was plunged into that darkness, I was so scared and sad. But I didn't know that I had been in that darkness for three days. That made Mama, Jii-chan, and Souta scared and sad as well. I felt terrible, and was so happy to return home. And then the well closed. Inuyasha, I've thought about you all the time since then.... The reason I went to the Sengoku Jidai; the reason the Shikon No Tama disappeared and the well stopped connecting.... What I had to do is done....'

"Goodbye Inuyasha," Kagome said sadly, turning around, and exiting the well house. With a heavy heart, she shut the door on that part of her life forever.

----

"What the Hell?" Inuyasha cried. "We go through all that and she just gives up?"

Touga placed his hand gently on his son's shoulder, "With the way you've been treating her, can you honestly say you've given her a reason to try?"

"I guess not," Inuyasha mumbled despondently.

"That's not all either," Touga said apologetically.

----

Lightning flashed across the sky, dumping rain down on the huddled figure by the well.

Inuyasha sniffed at the crouching figure, and coughed at the stench. He took in the shivering, wasting frame, the formerly silver hair was now dingy and grey.

"That's not me is it?" Inuyasha asked.

Touga nodded, "Ten years after the battle."

"Come on wench, I know you're going to come back... You promised," the future Inuyasha mumbled as he stared down into the well.

"I don't have until the end of time... we found a way to get through this before, come on, help me out here," he pleaded, hoping his message was getting through to the future. "I built you a hut," he tried to coax.

"Now be a good girl, everyone's waiting for you..."

"Holy shit I've gone crazy. Where are Sango and Miroku? They wouldn't have let me turn out like this," Inuyasha asked.

"The separation became too much for you after a few years," Touga explained. "Eventually you started spending all of your time sitting by the well trying to talk to Kagome. Your mind went.... They tried to help you at first but..." he trailed off.

"But what?" Inuyasha asked.

"They had their own children to worry about, and they couldn't bear to watch their best friend break down like this. I'm sorry Inuyasha; they gave up."

"Please come back to me Kagome," Inuyasha said pitifully into the dark well.

----

"Where are we now?" Inuyasha asked, looking around a mostly deserted temple. A body was burning on a pyre, and only one small family was in attendance. Inuyasha cocked his head and looked at the man, he looked familiar. Like Souta, but older.

"Oh no, did Kagome's mother die?" Inuyasha asked, looking frantically around for Kagome. "Where's Kagome? She wouldn't miss her mother's funeral."

"Kagome's mother passed a few years ago," Touga confirmed, "this isn't her mother's funeral."

"But then whose..." Inuyasha began fitting the pieces together. "No. It's not!"

"It is," Touga confirmed, "Kagome wasn't going to live forever you know."

"But what about her husband? Her kids? Her friends? She must have had a million of them," Inuyasha stubbornly protested.

"She never married. No kids either. And as for her friends, well, sometimes people drift away. Kagome spent most of her adult life alone," Touga informed his son somberly.

Inuyasha fell to his knees in horror, "But she was so loving, I mean, she always loved kids. She would have been the world's best mother; the world's best wife.... How could she live out her life and not have people see that?"

Touga looked at Inuyasha and waited a beat before answering, "She never married because she never allowed herself to be courted by anyone. She never courted because she never got over you."

"You know, if you want to show Kagome moving on without me; fine. I can even take going insane over it. But making me watch Kagome being alone and forgotten when she dies.... That's a goddamn dirty trick!" Inuyasha snarled as he lunged for his father. He grabbed the Youkai's throat with both hands, glaring at his father with fire in his eyes.

"Why are you guys showing me this? The past, the present, the future; I can't change this! I can't do anything about it!" he shouted.

"Wow, you're really angry about someone you claimed earlier not to care about," Touga replied.

"You know damn well how I feel about her!" Inuyasha snarled.

"Then treat her like it!" Touga shot back. "The future's not set in stone; you still have time to change it. But it won't happen if you keep treating Kagome like something unpleasant you just stepped in. You still have a couple of days before Christmas, get her a nice gift and spend them with her!"

----

Inuyasha started awake. He brushed the snow off his face, and looked down at the snowdrift he'd waken up in. 'How long have I been here?' he wondered.

He quickly rose to his feet and was off like a shot in search of Sango; after all, what did he know about getting a gift for a girl?

A few hours later, Inuyasha stealthily slid through a window the Higurashis had left unlocked. The shocked look on the occupant's face made Inuyasha chuckle. He walked over and ruffled the boy's hair.

"Hey kid, I heard you were sick. How are you feeling?"

"I'm getting better," Souta croaked out. "What are you doing here? Sis said you weren't coming."

"Souta," Inuyasha said, sounding half-offended, "have you ever known your sister to be right about anything? Ever?"

Souta smiled and shook his head, "I guess not."

"Get some sleep, I need to see your sister," Inuyasha ordered, and quietly exited the room. Gulping nervously he walked up to Kagome's door.

"Here goes nothing," he mumbled before knocking lightly.

"Mom, I told you I'm-" Kagome stopped as a red fire rat covered chest filled her vision. She looked up with shining, watery eyes, "Inuyasha?"

"Um... Hey Kagome," Inuyasha said nervously. He held a crudely wrapped gift in front of him, "Sorry about earlier. And well, everything before that too."

Kagome could only blink in amazement before she launched herself at the unprepared Hanyou. They both tumbled to the floor, with Inuyasha making sure he took the brunt of the fall. Inuyasha didn't mind the arms locked tightly around his neck or the face that was burying itself in his chest. Finally, Kagome regained control of herself.

"Merry Christmas, Inuyasha," she said happily.

"Keh, I still don't understand it. But you too Kagome," he answered before placing a light kiss to the top of her head.
FOR 3LUE3UTTERFLY: Five for You, Two for Us, One for Me by ED Staff
Inuyasha looked down at his stash spread across his bed. He stood with his hands on his hips, and his weight on his right leg with his left foot kicked out to the side, and a grin on his face. He knew Kagome wasn’t Jewish, and neither was he, but he was going to borrow from the religion and do a Five Days of Christmas themed gift giving bonanza to her, and oh, did he have to be sneaky. It had taken a bit of planning to get all the gifts delivered to her, but it would be so very worth it to see her flustered face every day at work.

The first gift came on December 20th. The flower delivery many came to her office just before lunch, and delivered the beautiful arrangement of red roses and white carnations. Inuyasha watched Kagome’s office from his office door across the room full of cubbies and open office space as Sango accepted the delivery, and slipped in two specially made flowers before letting Kagome know they had come. He watched as she knocked on the office door, Kagome opened it, and the baffled look on her face as she accepted the flowers. Walking into the room Sango purposely didn’t close the door behind her, so he could watch Kagome sit the bouquet on her desk, and Sango innocently point out the two unusual flowers that were combined with the rest. He watched as she pulled the flowers out and unwrapped them. He began his track across the office so he would arrive at her door just after she discovered what the flowers really were, forcing her to hide them in embarrassment.

Sango knocked on her boss’s door, trying to keep a simple smile on her face. Kagome answered, genuinely surprised to see the beautiful Christmas bouquet handed to her.

“Whom would these be from?” Kagome was genuinely puzzled because she knew it wasn’t from Inuyasha. He just didn’t send her flowers.

“I don’t know,” Sango replied. “Why not put them on your desk, and dig around to see if there’s a card?” She expertly maneuvered her friend inside, leaving the door open because she knew Inuyasha was watching.

The girls began to shuffle the flowers around, looking for some type of identifier, when Kagome notice two flowers that did not match the rest.

“Oh, these are unusual. They’re silk? Why would these two flowers be different?” Kagome pulled them out and noticed they had ties underneath each bud. Undoing the tie on the red flower it fell into a heap on her desk. Reaching down she shook it out, and noticed a very racy pair of red, silk, panties… with no cheeks in them! Someone had sent her a pair of red thong panties! She was almost afraid to untie the white flower, but when she did she found a white, silk blindfold. She looked at Sango, shock on her face.

“Oh my gosh, Sango! These can’t be for me! Are you sure they were meant for me? What am I supposed to do with these?!” She held the red panties pinched between her fingers, waving them in the air. It was all Sango could do not to laugh.

The pitch of Kagome’s voice was gradually getting higher as her panic increased. When she heard the knock on her door she almost tripped over her own feet as she spun to see who was there, hiding her presents behind her back. It reminded Inuyasha of a kid getting caught with his Dad’s Playboy. He found it hard not to laugh.

“Ready for lunch, Kagome?” He noticed how flushed his wife was, and found himself trying hard to keep his voice pleasant and his expression innocent.

“Uhm, yes, yes. I’ll be right there. Just give me a minute, ok, Inuyasha?” He nodded, walking away from her door. Turning to her secretary Kagome whispered, “Do something with these! Inuyasha can’t see them!” Sango nodded, wishing her friend a good lunch.

The 21st brought a second delivery, this one a bit bolder. Again, just before lunch, a square box from a local jeweler arrived for Kagome. Looking confused, she took the box from Sango’s outstretched hands, and walked to her desk. Again, Sango didn’t close the office door, and Inuyasha found himself watching from across the room. Kagome untied the ribbon around the box, and gasped at the beautiful diamond and ruby bracelet she found inside. Digging through the box she didn’t find a card, but she did find a red, silk baby doll nightgown with a white boa along the edges. Holding it up he could see her face redden. He coughed loudly before he reached her office door, giving her seconds to stuff everything back in the box. Smiling, Inuyasha invited his wife to lunch again.

“Sure thing! I’ll be right there!” Kagome tried to be nonchalant about handing the box back to Sango before grabbing her coat and walking out ahead of Inuyasha. Over her shoulder Inuyasha threw a wink and a smile at Sango, who couldn’t help but laugh.

Day three lunches were delivered for her and Sango while Inuyasha was out of the office for the day. Placed randomly among her eating utensils was an extra something heavy wrapped in a napkin. “What in the world,” she thought as she unwrapped it, and screamed when a flesh colored vibrator fell out into her lap.

“Oh my gosh, Kagome, what?!” Sango was instantly on her feet, running around Kagome’s desk to see what had scared her. “Wait a minute, is that…”

“Who the Hell puts vibrators in people’s lunches?!” Kagome was almost at the end of her rope. She pushed her lunch across her desk, while Sango picked up the offending object and Kagome opened her desk drawer for her to drop it in, slamming it as if to lock the vibrator into an abyss of darkness.

“I swear, Sango, I don’t understand! I get flowers with lingerie, a bracelet with a nighty, and lunch with a vibrator. I tried to return the bracelet, but they wouldn’t take it back. I can’t accept jewelry and naughty unmentionables from someone I don’t know! What’s Inuyasha going to say? He’ll be livid! And mad at me for accepting them, but what am I supposed to do?”

“You haven’t told Inuyasha yet?” Sango casually ate her lunch.

“How am I supposed to do that? What am I going to say, “Hey honey, guess what? I have been getting the oddest personal gifts at the office, and have no idea who they’re from. But think of all the fun we’re going to have!” Yeah, I don’t think so.” Kagome let out a long sigh and flopped back in her desk chair.

“Dunno, but you better think of something. You can’t hide this forever.”

A plainly, brown, cardboard box was delivered on the 23rd. Kagome almost cringed when she took it from Sango. “I can only imagine,” she said, asking her friend to come into her office with her, and close the door behind her. Turning to see Inuyasha across the room she mouthed, “Sorry” before she clicked the door closed.

Unwrapping the box slowly, she groaned outwardly when it was finally done. “Oh dear God, really?” She reached in and pulled out a black, squeeze bottle of anal lube. Sango couldn’t hold it in, and doubled over laughing. “It’s not funny! This really crosses the line!”

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry. You just looked so funny holding that bottle, with that look on your face.” Sango sat down in the chair in front of Kagome’s desk. “Ok, so now this person has crossed a line? I thought that happened on day 1 with the panties and blind fold.”

“Well, yeah, but this is just… you know! I have no use for this! I really have to tell Inuyasha now. I can’t let it go anymore.”

“We have off tomorrow for Christmas Eve so you’ll have all day to tell him.”

Again Kagome groaned and flopped back in her chair.

Inuyasha and Kagome spent the day of Christmas Eve visiting her family. They had decided they were going to stay home that night and Christmas day because, if they were lucky, this would be their last as a childless couple. After four years of marriage they had decided to try for children in the New Year.

After a long, exhausting day of socializing they were ready to head home, have a relaxing soak in the tub, and a quite night in front of the Christmas tree watching the lights, talking quietly, and sipping eggnog and rum. Upon reaching their door, however, Kagome immediately tensed at the sight of another plain, brown box with her name on it. She groaned as Inuyasha picked it up.

“What’s this?” Inuyasha looked the box over, shaking it next to his ear before handing it over.

“Listen, we have to talk about something,” Kagome began as she kicked off her shoes in the entryway, and hung up her coat. “Meet me in the living room?”

“Ok, be right there.” Inuyasha watched as his wife hurried off.

Once they were settled in the living room Kagome offered him the first brown box she had gotten that week. Taking it, Inuyasha opened it as she began to talk.

“Ok, so earlier this week someone had flowers delivered to my office. There was no tag on them, but inside the bouquet were two specially made flowers. When I unwrapped them, this is what they were.” She reached into the box and pulled out the red panties and white blindfold, handing them to Inuyasha for inspection. “The next day these were delivered.” This time she handed over the bracelet and nighty. She sighed as one of his eyebrows went up in question. “On the day you were out of the office Sango and I ordered lunch. This was wrapped in a napkin with mine.” Kagome handed over the vibrator, cringing as both eyebrows rose. “And yesterday I got this.” Finally she pulled out the bottle of lube. “I tried to take the bracelet back, but the jeweler wouldn’t accept it.” Looking at the new box with distress Kagome sighed. “I can only imagine what’s in that box.”

Gathering everything up Inuyasha sat it back inside the box Kagome had used to keep it all in, and picked up the second, unopened box. “Well, open it.”

She took it from him, and began to unwrap it. Too slowly, in Inuyasha’s opinion. When she finally pulled out a ball gag and rope she snorted and shoved the box at him. “I knew it.” Truly distressed she got off the couch and walked over to stare out the window. Inuyasha walked up behind her and pulled her hair aside to kiss her neck.

“Kagome, has anyone every told you you talk too much?” Her gasp was all the opportunity he needed to put the ball in her mouth and clip the gag around her head. With wide eyes she turned to look at her husband, reaching up behind her head to unfasten the hooks.

“Nope, I don’t think so.” Taking both wrists in hand Inuyasha made quick work of tying them together. “I didn’t send you all this just so you could not use it. We had agreed to try for children this next year, but that doesn’t mean it has to be boring.” He winked at her as he led her by the rope over to the boxes of goodies. Gathering up the one with all the clothes and lube, Inuyasha headed toward the bedroom. Kagome tried to make a grab for the lube sitting on top. “What, this?” He sat the box on their nightstand, picking up the tube. “This is just a bonus.” He grinned wickedly at the look on her face.
FOR MISSMIROKU: Back To December by ED Staff

Dedicated To: MissMiroku, Merry Christmas!! =D

0-0-0-0-0-0

Hugging her frame tightly, Kagome wet her parched lips as she paced her bedroom with evident agitation.

“Are you sure about this?”

Kagome paused briefly, her brown gaze flicking towards her best friend who was huddled under her comforter on her bed with a slight smile touching her lips. “It’s already done.”

Sango shrugged, shuddering slightly before drawing the comforter closer to her form. “I know that, but it’s just…” She exhaled an icy puff of air. “I mean… Who’s to say he’ll show?”

Stopping short in front of her window, Kagome felt the smile fall from her lips while she watched the sky shed tiny droplets of white clouds, coating the earth with its pureness. She knew such a beautiful image should warm her heart with nothing but happiness, yet during a time like this, she couldn’t help but feel sadness and regret suffocating her.

“I have to stay positive,” She whispered, dragging her spheres from her window as she headed towards her closet for her jacket. “I know there’s a slim chance that he’ll show… but…” Her voice broke while she shrugged into her thick jacket.

“I’m not trying to be a pessimist, but…” Sango stood from the bed while she walked over to the dressing table and took up a small picture of a dark-haired male with a piercing above his left eyes. “…After what you did, would you want to see you?”

Instantly, Kagome’s orbs shone with the evidence of tears as she snatched the photo out of her friend’s grip. She loved her friend dearly, but the fact that she was damping her already wet mood wasn’t helping her already wavering confidence. “I still… I still…hope…” She mumbled feebly, the image of the guy blurring as she looked at it.

“Kags…”

“I still love him Sango,” She whispered, never taking her focus off of the image. “Therefore, I can never bring myself to stop hoping.” She exhaled loudly. “Even if I may not have a future with him, I’d still want him to hear me out.”

A loud sigh echoed in the room while Sango made her way back to the bed and under the protection of the comforter. “Then why are you still here?”

When Kagome looked up at her friend, she was pleased to see her smiling encouragingly at her.

0-0-0-0-0-0

“Are you sure you want to do this?”

Kagome giggled loudly as she snuggled closer between her boyfriend’s legs, her back pressed to his front as her enveloped her in a hug from behind. His firm grip securely held the reigns of the sled they were currently seated in.

“I should be asking you that question!” He scoffed, easing down to nibble on her earlobe before kissing beneath it softy. “So…” He murmured, drawing her even closer to his frame with a huge grin kissing his visage. “Are you sure about this?”

Kagome gave him a scoff of her own, turning her head to look into his stormy gaze. “With you?” She shyly stole a kiss before her face heated up. “I’m always sure,” She whispered.

“You’re so cute,” He chuckled loudly while she ducked her head in embarrassment. “We’ve known each other our whole lives and we’ve officially been together for over about four months and you still act like we just met!”

“Shut up Yashie!” She squeaked, looking around to see if anyone were listening to them. “I do not act that way!” She denied, a cute pout tugging on her lips.

Chuckling even louder, he didn’t comment further as he leaned towards her slightly, allowing the sled to tilt forward atop the snow-covered mountain top. Not expecting the cold slap of icy wind against her face so suddenly, Kagome screamed loudly, her eyes springing with tears as she felt her rosy cheeks ice up.

“Woo-Hoo!” Inuyasha shouted, shifting the sled in a small zigzag as they rocketed downward. His loud chuckle matched his girlfriend’s scream while she gripped his arm; their visage covered in nothing but exhilarated excitement…

Kagome walked slowly towards the main park, her hands stuffed into her jacket’s pocket for the well needed warmth her body craved for in this snowy weather. She looked around her surroundings idly, wishing that all the memories drifting back to her wasn’t shared with Inuyasha, yet thankful that she still had such treasures all the same.

The small ice-cream store on her right-side was now abandoned, but she still remembered the first time Inuyasha bought her ice-cream. Although he only bought it for her as to cheer her up from the tennis match she’d lost earlier that day. Still, Kagome had been happy to have received such a gift from the one person she looked up to the most.

“I was just ten and he was already sixteen but he never once thought I was annoying for always following him around,” She shook her head in wonder. “I was so foolishly in awe with him, I was probably even in love with him then –…” Halting her ranting as if the words got stuck in her throat, Kagome exhaled loudly in dismay.

Continuing on her journey, passing places that were filled with both the good and the bad, Kagome came to a stop at the entrance of the park.

“You can’t drive for shit!” Kagome groaned as she eased out from under the upside down sled with Inuyasha. “I can’t believe you slid right towards the tree!”

With a huge grin on his face, Inuyasha kicked the sled away from them before helping Kagome up and dusting her off. “I got distracted!” He defended, bending down to retrieve a red wool hat and placing it atop his girl’s head.

“What could have possibly distracted you?” She snorted as she tried her hardest to keep her glare intact but knew that she was fighting a losing battle.

Even though she was already seventeen years old, at the age where most girl had already had at least two boyfriends, Inuyasha was her first and only. So with everything he did, the way he spoke to her so tenderly or the way he treated and cared for her always made her heart do flip flops and her tummy explode with butterflies.

‘Dear stomach, please forgive me,’ She mentally apologize, her blush intensifying as Inuyasha fixed the hat on her head, and then proceeded to move her bang out of her eyes carefully.

“You.” He stated, cupping her neck before kissing her button nose lightly.

“What?” Kagome stupidly asked, her nose feeling oddly warm even in the cold weather.

Inuyasha smiled and backed her up against the same tree that caused their crash so that they wouldn’t be in anyone’s sledding path. “You ask me what could distract me,” He repeated, he gloved hands moving to cup her cheek. “You’re to blame,” He whispered, his cold breath tingling her visage.

Gulping, Kagome broke eye contact while she wondered how it was possible for her frigid coldness to dissipate into such warmth with simple actions and words from this man before her.

“Do corny lines work for you all the time?”

She sneaked a look at him, only to be greeted with a tender smile.

“There’s nothing corny about expressing my true feelings for the woman who holds my heart.”

“Yashie,” She pressed her lips together to keep her giggle down. “I…”

“If doing the things I do, and saying the things I say means I’m corny, then so be it.” His lips came down to chastely kiss her pouty lips tenderly. “As long as I can convey my feelings wholeheartedly to the woman I cherish, then nothing else matters.”

“You…” Her voice hitched in her throat as she tried to process what he’d just said.

Inuyasha pressed a tender kiss to her forehead, before moving to touch her ear with his lips. “Are you scared?” He whispered ghostly.

Cautiously walking towards a tall figure that leaned against a picnic table with his back turned to her, Kagome felt her hidden palms begin to sweat with anticipation laced with fear. Her eyes roamed slowly over the tall figure donning a black long coat with its collar popped. He wore a black beanie hat atop his long silky midnight locks.

“Inu…” His full name refused to leave her mouth, but it was enough to catch his attention.

Said male looked around quickly, his gaze holding something close to shock before he blinked it away to replace it with indifference. Inuyasha fully turned to face her, revealing the black cotton turtle neck beneath his coat and a pair of dark jeans.

Kagome noticed that he had a second piercing above his eye, next to the original one he got a couple years ago. She smiled uneasily, resisting the urge to burying herself in his embrace and hear the musical tenderness that was his voice.

“Hi…” She waved slightly, her smile widening an inch.

Inuyasha simply stood there, staring ghostly at her as if he was unsure if she was real or not. His stormy orbs raked over her form slowly, drinking up her figure and storing it away, deep within his cracked heart.

“You…” She sniffled suddenly and quickly dropped her gaze to the ground. “I’m so glad you came.”

“You called.” She heard him say, the tone of his voice making her flinch.

It was even colder than the snowy atmosphere – a feeling from him that she never once experienced.

“I didn’t expect you to –…”

“What do you want?” He asked, cutting her off with a fold of his arms across his chest.

“Um,” She laughed with hollowness. “I forgot you’re probably really busy huh. After you left for the road, it didn’t take you long before your popularity rose.”

She looked up at him as if expecting him to say something and end the suffocating silence of uneasiness between them. But all she got in reply was a shrug.

“How’s your family?” She started once again, fidgeting under his icy glower. “I heard your older brother’s company is blooming rapidly, and you’re mother doesn’t look a day older than twenty!” She exclaimed, her smile shinning as she thought back to her once second family. “It’s been a while since I’ve seen them, but maybe I’ll change that –…”

“What do you want?” He asked again, a bored glance sweeping in her direction. “The place is getting colder as we speak and quite frankly, I’d rather be at home with loved once.”

Ouch.

Kagome’s lids fell painfully, shielding the hurt in her spheres. She knew she deserved everything he said and more. But never experience such hatred from this man before her; Kagome didn’t know how to handle the feeling that greedily hugged clawed at her with joy.

As a tear slid from her closed windows, Kagome quickly wiped it away.

“I wanted to see you,” She confessed. “I know we spoke a little over the phone… but it’s not the same. I haven’t seen you in over a year and I heard you were visiting so…”

“So?” He asked, exhaling loudly. “Is that all?” Not waiting for her to answer, he turned his back on her to head in the opposite direction.

Watching him turn his back on her, she couldn’t help but wonder if this is how he felt in the past. Was his heart crumbling painfully as he looked at her retreating form? Did he shed a tear at the coldness she zapped him with after walking away from him?

Kagome let her tears fall silently, her breathing now erratic as her form shook with sorrow.

The door of her bedroom slammed open, revealing a breathless Inuyasha who rushed to her quickly.

“I came as soon as I heard,” He breathed, sweeping her up in his arms. “I’m so sorry Kags.”

“Yashie…” She whispered, staring up at him wide-eyed.

She couldn’t believe that he left his job just to make sure she was alright. Kagome didn’t dare tell him about the bad news because she knew this job was important to him. He’d been jobless for a couple of months and after landing himself a position at the local supermarket just last week, she knew it would look bad on him to miss any days, or be distracted for that matter.

“I’m so sorry to hear about your dad baby,” He mumbled, kissing her head as he squeezed her form to his.

“What about your job?”

“Nothing’s more important than you,” He flashed her a brief smile as he looked deeply into her eyes. “How bad is it?”

Her smile fell from her lips as they started to quiver, her eyes glassing over with tears. “I’m so scared…” Sniffling softly, she buried her face in his chest. “I thought I’d lost him…”

Her dad was currently at the hospital, but he couldn’t image how Kagome must be feeling, especially since he heard she was witness to her father’s stroke. He stroked her back softly, cradling her head with his other hand to his chest. “You didn’t – and you won’t,” He assured her as they book sunk to the bed with Kagome atop him.

Her voice broke. “I’m scared.” She confessed once more, just as a tear rushed down from her pools.

Inuyasha watched as the dam broke fully and her sobs increased as she babbled senselessly, and repeatedly confessed her fears.

“Shhh…” He eased up in a sitting position with her between his legs. “You have to stay positive Kags,”

Her eyes held doubt and fear, but Kagome nodded nonetheless.

With a sweet smile set to assure her positively, Inuyasha allowed her to cry her heart out until she tired, all the while cradling her to his form.

“Please don’t go!”

She screamed, her feet pushing her towards his fading form.

Inuyasha froze a millisecond before continuing on, not once looking behind him.

“I know you’re hurting right now…” She started, pausing in her stride when he swirled around with blazing eyes.

“Is that so?” He sneered.

“Yes.” She rushed out, afraid to hear an angry retort that would consume her with tears. “…And I know it’s my fault.”

He laughed – a cold and hollow laugh.

Kagome swiped at her tears. “I just wanted to tell you how much I regret what I did to you last year.”

Hearing her sudden confession forced his laughter to die down.

Kagome pushed on.

“That time I was young and scared.” She admitted, her hands fidgeting in her pockets. “You’re so amazing, and even though we’ve been together for so long, I still felt insecure. I always felt that you’d leave me one day after coming to your senses. I thought you’d probably meet some amazing girl on the road and leave me…” She inhaled deeply as his glare scorched her. “I figured I’d just –…”

“End things first?” He mumbled before releasing a soft chuckle. “I’ve done nothing but be there for you, express how I felt countless!” He shook his head, confused as to why she felt he could ever have eyes for someone else. “I asked you to be with me – I needed you by my side and you refused me… You rejected my…” His voice cracked.

Seeing a slight ray of hope, Kagome took a step closer to him, in touching range.

“I’m sorry,” Chocolate clashed with stormy grey. “I’m so sorry! If I could get one wish, I’d wish to go back to that very second and change my response.” Refusing to break eye contact with him, she felt her nose stinging as her tears started to build up. “I was so stupid and so blind as to what I had until I lost it.” Daring to feel him, she extending an arm to grasp his. “…Until I lost you.”

As if her touch was fire itself, Inuyasha snatched it from her grip.

“You’re the first woman I ever loved you know? I gave you everything and you threw it on the ground as if it was nothing.” Shaking his head at the memories flooding him, he couldn’t help but shield the pain with his lids.

“And every day I live in regret, ashamed of what I’ve done to you.” Wetting her lips slowly, she turned her gaze toward the hill where they sled down many times in the past. A small smile touched her lips of those wondrous memories. “I thought giving you freedom was best for both of us.”

“Who gave you the right to decide that?!”

She shrugged helpless. “It’s was painfully obvious that I was wrong. I was only setting myself up for nothing but pain. Day in and day out, I’ve done nothing but miss you.” She snorted at her idiotic choices. “Is that freedom?”

“If you’re gonna stare at the damn thing for so long,” Sango started, a large multi-colored lollipop in her hand. “You might as well call him up.”

Nibbling on her nails, Kagome looked up frantically at her nonchalant friend. “What if he doesn’t answer,” She stressed. “Oh God, what if he cuss me out and tell me how despicable I am?”

Always being the painfully obvious friend Kagome both loved and hate, Sango shrugged and pushed the lollipop to the side of her mouth. “Well, you are despicable and he’d be stupid not to cuss you out.” Shifting the sweet to the other side of her mouth, she grinned the best she could. “So if he doesn’t do those things, only then can you freak out – because something would seriously be wrong if he didn’t.”

“Um…”

“You’re welcome.”

Rolling her eyes, Kagome threw her cell on the bed before giving a cry of frustration as she flopped down next to her cell on the bed. “I’m scared.” Her muffled voice came out.

“Why?” Sango groaned in annoyance.

“What will I say?” She asked, her eyes hopeful as she shift to look at her friend. “I mean, I use to call him, try to talk with him but he’s always so…so…”

“Guarded?”

“Yes!”

“Well who could blame him?” Sango snatched up her phone with furrowed brows. “You freakin’ broke that guy’s heart!”

“Can you be any more blatant?!” Kagome sarcastically screeched.

“Yes I can,” She grinned cheekily. “But I don’t want to bring you to endless tears.”

“Ugh!”

“Oh wow – it’s ringing.” Dangling the cell in Kagome’s face, she saw the name ‘Yashie’ on the screen.

“Sango!” Kagome yelled, clawing for the cell and throwing it on the other side of the room where it smashed against the wall.

“Why are you getting all scared for?” Irked by her stupidity, Sango threw herself on the small sofa and continued sucking on her lollipop. “You talked to him before without a reason – but this time you actually have a freakin’ reason!”

“It’s different.”

“That’s because it’s his fuckin’ birthday!”

Groaning into her pillow, Kagome turned her back on her friend as she continued to cuss her for her idiocy.

“I don’t expect you to forgive me Inuyasha,” He turned his head from her, and before she knew it, her palms were cradling his visage, forcing him to look at her. “I don’t.” She whispered evenly. “But that doesn’t mean I don’t want you to know how I really feel.”

“Just drop it Kagome.” He was trying his hardest not to focus on her nearness, or the fact that her pouty lips looked even more tantalizing than the last time he’d seen it. “It doesn’t make a difference.”

“It does…It does make a different.”

When his gaze moved to her determined stare, his insult diminished on his tongue.

“Being with you, after admiring you for so long was a dream in itself.” She smiled slightly. “I loved you then and I hadn’t even realized it.” She cracked a smile.

Kagome almost laughed at how foolish she probably looked to outsiders who saw her following Inuyasha everywhere he went. When he started playing a guitar, she too had tried her hardest to learn – even though she was naturally bad at it, never to be a good player such as Inuyasha, she still pushed on, if only she could have similar likes as his.

Allowing her mind to take her to more recent events, she found herself caressing her cheeks soothingly as memories of the summer invaded her mind. The times he dunked her in the ocean just to get arise out of her. She couldn’t forget the time she asked him to share his ice-cream with him, and he obliged but ended up pushing the whole cone in her face. The only reason she let that one time slide was because he proceeded to clean her…with his tongue, and even though being embarrassed was an understatement in her state – she was still happy for such an endearing memory. During that particular summer, they’d spend every waking day together playing and heading towards the beach with friends and family while at nights were devoted completely to them.

Being with a romantic, Kagome was often surprised with star-gazing nights atop random hills, or even out door dinner consisting of burgers and milkshake atop the hood of his car while he fed her lines that turned her to mush.

‘I think that’s when I realize I was in love with you,’ her gaze flickered to his visage where her ministration caused his weakness to surface as his lids fell close in content. ‘I realized too late though.’

Her sphere flickered to his lips and by the time her lips touched his, only then did she noticed what she’d done.

“Am I hurting you?”

“No…I…” Kagome shifted to get more comfortable, her breathing coming in short breaths as she tried to get comfortable.

“I’m sorry,” He kissed her tear away.

“Don’t be…I’m just nervous…” Kagome blushed crimson, looking up at Inuyasha who was positioned above her. “What if I suck?”

Smiling, Inuyasha entwined his hands with hers on either side of her head. “Don’t be and you could never suck,” He croaked out, leaning forward to capture her lips in a tender kiss. He felt her deepen the kiss, hoping to take some of his strength in the process. Rocking his hips forward, he was rewarded with a strangled moan just as Kagome broke the kiss.

“Yashie,” She breathed, her eyes screwing shut in pleasure as he rolled his hips forward continuously, going slow with much difficulty as not to cause her any more discomfort.

Inuyasha rained kisses atop her forehead, then her nose – smiling softly at her before kissing her near the ear all the time thrusting deeply within her, his pace increase as she started to meet his thrusts. “You’re so beautiful,” he breathed against her lips, dipping his tongue inside her slightly opened mouth as her mewls increased in volume.

“Mmmmm,” She moaned, licking his tongue, and wrapping her legs around his waist, wanting to get even closer to him. “Just…Just like that,” She groaned deep within her throat, her nails pricking his hands that held hers tightly, evidence of him holding back.

In and out he thrust, bead of sweat coating over both their sweaty forms as her mewls rose drastically, indicating her closeness to completion.

“Ya –…”

“Kags,” His guttural groan sent her over the edge with one final thrust deep within her, making her already tight walls squeeze around his shaft, forcing him over the edge with her.

There moans of completion echoed throughout the room, sending a burst of white light before both their eyes.

There was no mistaking the hunger between them – the desire that was still evident and strong as they fought for dominance with their tongue. Inuyasha didn’t dare think as he grasped her waist, drawing her closer to him as he deepened the kiss even more, drawing her tongue into his mouth where he sucked on it until she whimpered softly.

Kagome smiled widely, snuggling closer to Inuyasha. “I can’t believe we did that.” She looked up at Inuyasha, her body feeling like lead, yet she didn’t care – she loved the feeling.

Inuyasha’s only response was to kiss her softly.

“You make my heart burst with so much love,”

Kagome giggled in embarrassment. “You’re too corny,”

He stuck out his tongue at her and drew her closer to him.

They both drifted off to sleep.

Inuyasha broke the kiss first, both their breathing labored. “This is wrong.”

The pain in her eyes at his words was evident to even a blind man.

“How can I just…” His head shook in the negative. “I…”

“I’m sorry,” She whispered for the umpteenth time. “I…I shouldn’t have kissed you. I just came here to apologize for what I did – and… and… And I wanted you to know that if I could turn back time then I’d do just that. I’d do everything in my power to stay be your side forever”

“You’re not serious are you?”

Kagome looked down at the small box between her and Inuyasha, a puzzled look gracing her features.

“My band and I are going on the road in a few weeks and I want you to know how serious I am with you.”

Kagome sputtered, her brows pushing downwards. “By asking me to drop my future and go with you? Just like that…?” Kagome looked from the tiny box to Inuyasha, happy but still hesitant. She was just nineteen years old! How could he expect her to just quit college and travel with him as a fiancé or wife… That was just…

“You’re insane.”

Inuyasha’s chuckle held uncertainty. “I guess love makes people insane huh?”

Kagome didn’t laugh. She was too scared. All this was just too sudden. What if he decided that she was just baggage, a weight that he turned to hate? How could she handle him suddenly dropping her when his fame started to grow?

She started to shake her head slowly. “This is crazy,” She whispered, “I…” Pausing, she stood up and dressed hurriedly, her doubt increasing as her gaze travelled over to a silently hurt Inuyasha periodically.

“What are you saying?” He called out when she was fully dressed.

“It won’t work Inuyasha,”

He cringed when she said his full name.

“I mean…” Laughing softly, she snatched her bag off of the floor. “I’m so young, still in college.” Shrugging, she paused to look at him. “I really want to say yes and just give in –…”

“So why don’t you?” He sat up as his grip on the box tightened. “I’ll always be with you; always protect and care for you no matter what.”

“I can’t live like that!” She couldn’t fathom a life where she had to depend on a guy for every single thing. No, Kagome wasn’t taught such ways, nor was she too thrilled about never earning her independence.

Too shock to even reply to that, Inuyasha watched helplessly as Kagome turned her back on him, mumbled a soft apology before walking away from him.

He knew that the sound he was hearing at that moment was his heart shattering to pieces, and the coldness trickling down his face was far worst that the snowy atmosphere outside his house.

Inuyasha sighed loudly, stepping back from Kagome and turning on his heels to walk away once more.

She watched him, chastising herself about her goal being only to confess her true feelings him, and nothing more. If he chose to keep the chain on his heart lock, never again to trust her with it, then so be it – she knew she couldn’t blame him.

She was the one who willingly walked out the door when he hadn’t asked her, so if he decided to close and lock that same door, and refuse to let her back in, then how could she blame him?

The fault lied entirely in her hands. Not his.

“Inuyasha!”

Waiting for him to turn around, she smiled brightly at him as her tears rushed forward for release.

“It’s okay.” She nodded once. “You’re decision was expected and I can’t blame you.”

He turned back around after a few seconds of her silence, knowing that if he watched her cry any longer, his resolve would melt.

“I love you!” She screamed her confession, her eyes screwed closed. “I’ve always love you and I don’t plan on stopping!”

Inuyasha kept walking.

0-0-0-0-0-0

Kagome shrugged. “Even though I wish we could be together,” She started, compelling a smile upon her lips. “I’m still happy that I got to tell him how I truly felt.”

Sango’s gaze held her friend captive, knowing full well that she was putting on a front. But still, Sango was proud with her friend. She never thought that Kagome had the guts to throw aside her pride and admit her wrong while in the same breath expressing her true feelings for once. Sango remembered how much Kagome could rush back to her, retelling the events of her time that was shared with Inuyasha and Sango was sure that she could quote Inuyasha exactly! The only thing that irked Sango was how Kagome would feel the need to not express her feelings to Inuyasha yet go on and on about it with Sango herself, as if Inuyasha would be aware of it through some type of telepathic techniques.

“Are you going to be alright?”

“I’ll have to force myself to be.” She flippantly replied just as the doorbell rang downstairs. “I can’t always have it my way, and it was my own actions that caused me to be the way I am.”

“So, what are your plans?”

“Dunno,” She shrugged. “I’ll be right back.” She rushed downstairs when the ringing of the bell continued annoyingly.

“Bring me back a snack!”

0-0-0-0-0-0

This was insane; it was very insane and Inuyasha knew that for a fact.

Here he was, impatiently ringing the doorbell of the same female who disappointed him in the worst way possible. He was still being haunted by the last time he saw her, shocked into stupor at being rejected when nothing in their relationship gave him a sign!

After hearing her earlier today, he couldn’t fathom why she ever felt that way. Not once had he looked at another woman the way he look at her, nor did he ever spoke or treated a woman the same way he treated her. To him, Kagome was far beyond reach – no one could ever compare to him. Although it took him a later time to notice he, he was glad that she had eyes only for him.

“I’m truly insane,” He chuckled ironically as he slammed against the doorbell in aggravation.

Insanity seemed to be the norm for Inuyasha. But he would choose that any day over his isolated life. Yea, his band was now famous, and his friends partied like there’s no tomorrow – every night, but Inuyasha was the exception. He couldn’t fully enjoy his fame knowing that the one person he wanted to share it with, the one person he wanted to cheer him on excessively had rejected his proposal and refused to let him care for her the way his heart plead for him to do.

But Inuyasha couldn’t deny the love he still held for this woman anymore. He knew that they would have to work on their relationship, and he’d have to consider her independence as well, but he refused to let her slip out of his grasp. The fact that she came to apologize, the way she looked at him and held him.

The way she kissed him.

Even if she hadn’t said anything, her actions alone was enough indication to convey her true desires – and he’d be damned if he’d repeat what she did to him last year.

“Tell me again,” He breathed just as the door opened with Kagome donning an annoyed pout. “…Tell me what you told me,”

Kagome’s mouth fell open into a small ‘o’ as she felt her heart beat increase.

Gripping the door frame tightly, Inuyasha released a slight growl before ending the distance between them and cupping her face. “I never once heard you say those words… I need to know if they were real,”

“They were,” She gripped his hand tightly her eyes shining with happiness. “They are,”

“Then,” He smiled softly, “Say them to me once more,”

Kagome shook her head in the negative.

“I’ll repeat it daily as long as I live…Given the chance.”

Searching his eyes with hopeful windows, Kagome pressed her face in Inuyasha’s palm before she felt his lips against her ears.

“You can start now.”

Biting her lower lip, Kagome moved her hands around his waist, going on tiptoe to touch his lips ghostly.

“I love you,” She breathed, drugging him with her confession. “I’ll always love you Yashie,”

His lips crashed down on hers in a blissful reunion, sealing her confession and their future together.

“Does that mean you forgive me?” She mumbled against his lips, allowing him to press her form against the now closed door while he rain sweet kissing along her neckline.

He chuckled whole-heartedly, the same musical voice she grew up hearing and loving. “What do you think idiot?” He laughed loudly again, while he buried his nose in the crook of her neck to inhale her sweetness. “You have a lot of making up to do?”

“A year’s worth,” She breathed softly, closing her eyes as tears rolled down freely with complete joy for the first time in a year.

“I’ll hold you to that.”

“Yashie,” She turned her head to press her lips below his ear. “You can hold me to anything.”

“I’ll definitely hold you to that.” He mumbled huskily.

She sniffled with a giggle.

Why had she ever thought that coming back to December would be painfully unbearable?

0-0-0-0-0-0

FOR KAGOME313: Winter Blessings by ED Staff
Disclaimer: I do not InuYasha. Any and all characters belong to Rumiko Takahashi. "I'll be Home For Christmas" song verses belongs to Rascal Flatts.


It was no use.

No matter if it was the holiday season, no matter if the first snowfall began falling on the eve of their anniversary, the night of her best friend’s annual party which was supposed to be cheery and warm and full of love and laughter.

Kagome Higurashi Taisho just couldn’t find herself to be happy.

Why?

Because her husband wasn’t going to make it home in time for either their 3rd year anniversary or the Western holiday season.

And it hurt. And with their recent fight just hours before he left on his last trip, her mind was elsewhere while her heart yearned to be put together because it was not only lonely but shattered when he left.

Her honey brown eyes scanned the woman before her. Her hair of midnight black was dripping wet, a towel wrapped around her, a face that held only sadness and pain. Even a hot shower was no use in lifting her spirits. In three hours, she was supposed to head on out to Sango and Miroku’s place for the holiday bash. As excited as she was the last two years since she and InuYasha had been married, this year it would be hard to even put on a smile.

Turning from her mirror, she scanned her…their bedroom. Plush red carpet, white drapes shading the two windows, the queen bed smack dab in the middle. Her eyes glazed at the large framed photo of her wedding day nearly 3 years ago above the bed. Her side left unmade, while her hanyou’s side was left cold and untouched. Her dress for the party lay at the foot along with her low heel matching shoes.

Sighing, Kagome went back into the master bath and proceeded to dry her wavy locks. As she did, the 24 year old couldn’t help but go over the last year and a half, ever since he took a high paying job that required him to travel, including out of the country. And ever since their arguments have slowly escalated. They took him away from her, sometimes for even months at a time. Phone calls were all they had, and small emails that told so little but meant so much. But what was worse that had the wife nearly in tears was the fact that InuYasha was slowly drifting away from the man she met in Jr. high school.

He was nearly obsessed with it and it made her wonder what on earth could make him nearly snap at her for even asking the simplest question, or not even showering her with affection like he usually did whenever he came back, and she was starting to think she was unattractive because he rarely touched her anymore. With the exception of the long night before he left recently, Kagome thought her nightmares of him no longer loving her were starting to happen.

And just thinking it made her heart ache in ways she never thought possible.

‘What have I done? What did I do to make you so angry and… so different from the man I married?’

The option of staying home and wallowing in self-depression was appealing, but if she didn’t go Sango would never let her hear the end of it. The girl had a fiery temper and was not easily swayed with excuses. In fact, Sango even dragged her out when they were sophomores to meet the guys at a local festival. She and InuYasha just had one of their infamous fights and were on no-speaking terms for the past few days. But her best friend had none of it. After making her dress she hustled her out of the house and to the festival.

That night went miraculously well, she remembered. She and InuYasha made up and in his small way apologized with buying her a small bouquet. It was the deep kiss and the passionate embrace that answered his apology.

Smiling a little at that particular memory, Kagome stood up, stretched and changed into her undergarments. And looking into the bathroom mirror, her hands making their way to cradle her stomach Kagome was just recently blessed with another miracle.

And she wished InuYasha was here to experience it with her.

The house smelled of cinnamon and eggnog as the housewife sat, cradling her own drink as she mingled with the other partygoers. The living room was thriving with laughter and music, the kitchen where the goodies were being made, and the color theme of blue and silver all around her.

“So, have you heard from him at all?”

The expecting mother turned to one of her other best friends. “All I got was an email saying he couldn’t get home in time. And that was three weeks ago.”

“So he doesn’t know you're pregnant?” Ayame’s tone was disbelieving. “Oh that bastard…”

“It’s fine really.” Kagome took a drink.

Sango, who was sitting beside her shook her head. “Not if it’s making you this depressed. He’s been gone nearly two months-TWO FUCKING MONTHS, and all he sent you was a lousy email? I don’t know how you deal with it, Kagome.”

Looking from one friend to another, Kagome nodded. “I love him. That’s why. No matter what he does or how long he’s away doing his job he obviously loves.”

Sango didn’t miss the blanket of heartbreak in her friend’s tone. “It’s tearing you apart, Kagome. Have you talked to him about what it’s doing to you?”

“I’m afraid to. He’s been so snappish lately and it’ll probably make it much worse.” She subconsciously fingered her wedding ring, a reminder of the day she pledged herself to him. The diamond cut of her amber stone was similar to her husband’s eyes, eyes that always showed her love, faith and devotion.

She was starting to fear if he was slowly losing them.

Wanting to be alone for a bit, she thanked her friends and appreciated their efforts to make her feel better. The woman dressed in red was unaware of a pair of eyes watching her as she left the room quietly.

While she was beautiful adorned in the red off-the-shoulder, knee length, sparkly number he gave her for her birthday the first year they were married, her face was anything but joyous. He knew that look all too well.

Sadness. Fear. Depression. And what was worse is that it was caused by his actions and words.

The hanyou watched with turbulent eyes as the woman he loved with all his might grabbed her winter coat and disappeared on the snow laden porch. While he wanted to go after her, surprise her and love her, InuYasha knew he had to wait. He remembered the short but brief email he sent to her about three weeks earlier, telling her he was unable to make it back in time for their anniversary and the Christmas season. But due to a lucky break he was able to hop on and board the first flight home from California U.S.A. And within 14 hours he was back in his homeland, and made a point to surprise her tonight during the toasts.

But hearing the small bits and pieces heard from her conversations with the girls made him look back. She was afraid of confronting him. Afraid of what that would do to their marriage. As far as she was concerned his job meant more to him now than she did. And that stung terribly.

He loved Kagome. More than anything in the universe!

But remembering all the times he snapped at her for no reason other to make sure he was fine and well, for stomping off during an argument he didn’t want to face, the lack of affection and loving on his part, the silver haired hanyou clenched his fists, his eyes full of regret and sorrow. By the way he treated her, it was no wonder she began doubting him.

And it was even more painful when he heard how she sounded, her smile and tone all an act to hide the pain he’s inflicted upon her. InuYasha knew he had to make it up her if he could. It would be a miracle if she forgave him for all he’s done to her.

‘She’s been suffering all along. All this time she was afraid to confront me about how she really felt about all this because of my attitude. Man, am I the biggest asshole to ever grace the planet!!’

Deciding to screw the toasts, the hanyou picked the bouquet of vivid red poinsettias and bundled up. He would sneak out the back door, because no one knew save for Sango’s husband Miroku knew that he was home. Besides if he wanted the woman he loved to forgive him, he needed to be sincere. And alone with her. No way in hell was he going to apologize with a bunch of nosey-ass people he called friends.

No. InuYasha realized how much damage he’s done the past year and a half, but he prayed to any Kami who would listen tonight. If he wanted to see that twinkle in her eyes, the laugh that made his heart sing and her smile that put an angel’s to shame, the hanyou was going to do this right- and beg if necessary, although he hoped it wouldn’t come to that.

It was worth it. Kagome was worth more to him than his pride. And he’d be damned if he screwed this up.

In the end, all he wanted was her love and forgiveness. If he even deserved it anymore.

Her eyes took in the softly falling snow, gently powdering the lawns and streets and trees of the neighborhood. Her hair flowing freely around her shoulders whipped around in the chilly breeze, causing her breath to materialize and cheeks to redden. Only a week before Christmas, and on the eve of their anniversary.

“Looks like I’ll be spending this one alone.” She whispered dejectedly to herself. The party was meant for her to at least enjoy herself without being at her husband’s side, but her heart wasn’t in it.

As much as he changed over the past year, she was still head-over-heels in love with him. That won’t change. He took her breath away from the moment they met. That love won’t fade over an issue such as his job being his assumingly his number one priority. But how much longer would she be able to keep living like this? Wondering? Assuming? Doubting?

And how would she tell him the biggest news of all?

“I’m dreaming tonight of a place I love…” Her head snapped up, the voice achingly familiar. "Even more than I usually do…”

“InuYasha?” Did she dare believe it was true? Her eyes searched the front of the house, trying to locate him and his handsome voice.

But he kept on singing, “And although I know it’s a long road back…I promise you….”

And from the corner of her left eye, she spotted movement. She whipped around in order to see that her husband was moving towards her, singing in a voice that stole her heart. He wasn’t one to sing usually, but his deep voice was one that was too beautiful to hide.

“I’ll be home for Christmas…
You can count on me…”

She couldn’t stop the tears if she wanted to. Her husband, her InuYasha was there, singing and breathing as moved towards her with purpose. She noticed the poinsettia bouquet in his hand but moved up to his face, into his eyes…where he was saying everything.

“I’ll be home for Christmas…
If only in my dreams…”

With his last note and foot on the porch steps, she couldn’t stop herself from running into his arms, eyes glazed over with many tears.

The hanyou caught her with ease. Her head was buried in his chest, embracing him tightly as she could. His winter coat couldn’t hide the sobs she cried. His own arms hugged her tightly to him, one to her head; his fingers caught in between her dark strands and the other around her waist. His nose inhaled the perfume she wore; pear and vanilla-his favorite.

And that only served to make him feel even more like a guilty asshole, one who deserved to be left in the cold instead of being one with your wife’s warm body. Her tears were endless it seemed, but he let her cry them out. Her tears were like poison. It pained him so deeply it hurt, especially when he was the cause of it.

Neither one cared for the wintry bliss around them. The snow, the cold, the sounds coming from inside-they all vanished as more time passed in each other’s arms. They gave their warmth to each other, like it always should be. And InuYasha was foolish for not realizing it sooner. But would he lose her because of his selfish ways tonight? Tonight of all nights?

It would be no more than he deserved after what he put her through.

When her sobs died down and her heart rate slowed back to normal, he pressed his lips to her forehead before speaking. “I’m… I’m so sorry, Kagome.”

She lifted her head, her honey browns meeting his sun-golden orbs. “InuYasha…” Her voice was hoarse from her crying. While she wanted so much to say what was on her mind, she realized that he had more to say judging by how his eyes looked regretful and anguished. So all she did was listen.

His hands went to cup her face, the pads of his thumbs caressing her dampened skin. “I never realized… I didn’t see that… what I was doing to you… was hurting you so badly. I… I was blind, I was stupid, I was a selfish asshole that never… asked you… how you felt about my taking the job…” He sucked in a breath, his eyes looking into her soulful ones. “And to hear that… you’re afraid to talk to me about it…” He closed his eyes and turned his head down, ashamed. “I’m your husband. And I’m supposed to be there for you, care for you, watch over you, love you like I always have… but the idea of earning more money just to support you got in the way of loving you and I… haven’t been there when you needed me, when you needed to talk to me, and I reacted horribly. And I can see now that hurt you.”

Kagome never heard him sound so ashamed and so troubled before. Not even when his father passed was he this upset. Her hanyou was always tough, acting like nothing fazed him. But he was still a man- an inhuman man with feelings like everyone else. And he was nothing if not truthful and sincere. And he thought he was a bad husband, a horrible one who neglected his wife for work.

But he wasn’t. She knew he was deeply sorry, just by his eyes alone. They never lied to her. He was her husband, one that knew her better than anyone.

“Inu…” Her own hands touched his softly. “You’re here now. And I still love you regardless.”

“You should burn my ass for what I’ve done!” He breathed out.

“No…no I won’t do that. I may be upset that you never talked to me, and maybe I was cowardly in not approaching you about it.” One of her hands traced his lips, cold but familiar. She wanted to taste those lips again. “But no matter what, my heart still beats for you. And I admit I had my doubts about your love for me but not anymore. I was foolish to think so!”

“I’ve never stopped loving you, Kagome!” He pressed a fierce to kiss to her forehead. “And I don’t blame you for those doubts. I should have been paying more attention to what I have right in front of me instead of what possibly lays ahead. That my wife means the world to me and nothing can replace her.” His lips then pecked her nose. “And that I am damn lucky that I still have her.”

He then sealed his apology with the most heartfelt kiss she’s ever received from him.

Her arms automatically went around his neck, her lips responding to her hanyou’s with a deep longing. After two months she had him here, home in her arms.

His arms squeezed her warm body to his, his hands roaming from her hair to the small of her back and her hips. In his mind he was mentally cheering. He screwed up royally and he had been forgiven. A lucky bastard, perhaps the luckiest bastard in the whole world. He would never release her again. Her lips and her eyes and her face were priceless.

As soon as possible, his employer would be seeing his resignation.

The two passionately locked lips and held each other for what seemed like hours. As much as they thirsted for more and wanting a more private reunion, the couple pulled back, breathless and panting in the winter air.

His claws rubbing up and down her back sent shivers hinting at more. She then leaned up to kiss the corners of his lips. “I can’t wait to get back home, have you all to myself….”

Her husband grinned mischievously while his hands cupped her backside. “I have a lot of making up to do, woman. Tonight it’ll be all about you.”

Kagome could feel how excited he was and proceeded to travel to the back of his neck, one of his weak spots. “Nothing would make me happier.” Her fingers began caressing the warm skin of his neck, causing him to hiss. “And tomorrow will be even better.”

InuYasha couldn’t concentrate while her fingers did magic on his neck. Aside from him pressing her up against him, that pleasure spot was making his knees go weak.

She smiled, knowing that her hanyou still succumbed to her touches. But before she could drag him back home, she had something else in store to tell him. She brought her hands down to his which still held her backside and placed them on her abdomen.

He recovered from his high quick enough when his hands were pressed on her stomach. His eyes met hers, his heart beating double time at the only thing this could mean. Then his nose caught the scent he didn’t notice before. The scent of a new life growing in his wife’s belly.

His vocal chords didn’t want to work at the moment but his eyes and his lips seemed to be properly function. After kissing her breathless yet again, he lifted her up off her feet and twirled her around. They both laughed joyously for the first time in a long time.

InuYasha was truly happy now. Not only was he blessed with one miracle tonight- his wife having forgiven him, but another one that he couldn’t wait to meet. A child. His own baby was forming in Kagome’s belly, one that would still have a father in its life.

Hugging each other close, the couple kissed and rejoiced clueless of the audience watching from the front windows, crying and cheering for such a teary and romantic reunion.

After picking up the fallen and nearly forgotten poinsettias, now lightly frosted InuYasha scooped her up bridal style, kissed her passionately and made his way to her car in the falling snow. Kagome nuzzled and sweetly kissed his neck in gratitude before snuggling into his chest for warmth, hugging the dazzling Christmas flowers to her.

Neither could explain just how much the other meant to them, but it was deep enough for them to have two blessing in one night. And both InuYasha and Kagome couldn’t ask for anything more than each other, together as they should and always will be.
FOR MOONSTAR9411: The Holiday by ED Staff
“Ok, that’s that.” The raven haired woman said cheerfully as she shoved the last article of clothing into one of two over-stuffed suitcases. “Help me close these will you Sango?”

Said woman rolled her eyes as she leaned against the door frame, arms crossed over her chest. “I really don’t understand your reason for leaving Kagome.”

Kagome rolled her own eyes and sat on top of the suitcase closest to her and tried to use her weight to get it to zip. “We’ve been over this now help me close these damn things.”

Sango shook her head and grudgingly walked over to help her friend. Once both suitcases were closed, the two hauled them to the front door before collapsing on the couch. Who knew suitcases could be so heavy?

“Damn Kags, did you pack every piece of clothing you own?” Sango asked while trying to catch her breath. Kagome let out a small laugh.

“Close to it.” She answered. Kagome leaned her head against Sango’s shoulder and allowed herself a moment of relaxation before she had to head out on the long drive to the mountains.

“I still don’t think you should go. Don’t give him the satisfaction of running you off.” Sango said as she laid her head on top of her best friends.

Kagome sighed but didn’t respond. She didn’t really want to leave, but she couldn’t deal with seeing him being lovey dovey with her.

“I need to go and clear my head Sango or I’ll do something I won’t regret.” Kagome responded with a evil glint in her eye. Sango sighed heavily and threw her arms up.

“Fine, I give up, but you get to explain to the kids why Auntie Kagome didn’t come to Christmas.”

Kagome laughed and continued to lay against her friend until it was time for her to leave. Sango helped her load her suitcases in her trunk before giving her a hug and making her promise to call everyday.

Two hours later Kagome pulled up in front of the maintenance office where she would receive her key to the cabin she would stay in for a week. ‘Just me, myself, and I.’ Kagome walked into the office and saw an older woman sitting behind the desk. She had salt and pepper hair and a kind face.

“How may I help you dear?” The woman asked as Kagome approached the desk.

“Hello. My name is Kagome Higurashi, I called ahead to rent the available cabin. I was told to bring the payment when I arrived.” Kagome said as she swiftly pulled out her credit card. She watched the older woman type on her computer before she turned to her and smiled.

“I have your name right here Ms. Higurashi. You’ve been put in the Shikon cabin for a weeks stay. However, due to the high demand of our cabins we don’t have any singles available so you would have a roommate. Would that be a problem?” Kagome gave a slight frown. ‘Would it have killed them to mention that when I called?’

“I was hoping to have a cabin to myself, that was the whole point of coming here after all.” Kagome replied with slight attitude. She knew it wasn’t the woman’s fault, but that didn’t deter her irritation.

“I’m sorry Miss, but we don’t have any others available.” The woman said apologetically. She sat patiently as Kagome thought over her options.

Option one consisted of her staying in a cabin with a complete stranger, and hoping she still had a peaceful holiday. Option two consisted of her going home and attending the usual Christmas party her firm held every year and seeing him with her.

It didn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this puzzle out.

“I’ll take it, but the least you could do is take a bit off the rental fee for the inconvenience.” Kagome said in a business like tone. She wouldn’t pay full price for a cabin she had to share.

“Of course Miss, I’ll get right on it. Just sign these rental agreement forms while I complete your transaction.” The older woman said as she handed Kagome a few papers and grabbed Kagome’s credit card.

Kagome signed the papers after reading through them and handed them back to the woman. The woman put the papers in a folder and handed Kagome her credit card, keys and a receipt.

“Please enjoy your stay and if you need anything just let me know.” The woman smiled at her.

“Thank you…”

“Oh, where are my manners. My name is Kaede.” The woman laughed softly.

“Thank you again Kaede.” Kagome smiled before leaving the office. She got back in her car and drove down the marked road to where the cabins were.

Each of the ten cabins were spaced out to give the occupants privacy. Kagome turned right where a sign indicated Shikon cabin would be. Twenty minutes later she pulled into the driveway of the cabin, where another car was also parked.

Kagome shut off the ignition, grabbed the cabin keys and her car keys and headed for the cabin. There was light snow covering the ground and a slight chill to the air. It was unusually warm for December.

Kagome unlocked the front door and stepped in looking around. The living room was decorated in beige and dark browns. There were two sofas, a flat screen television, a fireplace and a bar. Kagome slipped off her shoes and walked further in, heading down a short hall that lead to the kitchen.

The kitchen was done in beige marble and dark cherry wood. There was a square table set for four in the corner. Kagome turned off down another hallway and came across the bathroom and two bedrooms.

The first bedroom was empty and decorated in a soft blue with light wood furniture. Kagome decided to take that room since her roommate didn’t seem to have claimed it. She then heard a bump from the second room and decided to start the introductions.

Kagome walked to the closed door and promptly knocked. She heard a few more thumps followed by a “who is it?”

“Hi, I’m your roommate for the week. Just wanted to introduce myself.” Kagome said feeling extremely awkward. There was another thump and then the door opened to reveal a God.

Time stopped as Kagome looked at the silver-haired God before her. He was at least six feet tall with a muscular physique that made her want to lick anything off of him. The feature that really got her attention were his eyes. They were the color of the richest honey and seemed deep with emotion. Emotion she wanted to drown in.

“Hi, I’m Inuyasha. Your name?” He asked her with an air of authority that she found to be rather sexy.

“K-Kagome, its nice to meet you.” She said still staring into the liquid honey that was his eyes. Kagome saw his gaze flicker over her form and a smirk appear on his face.

“I could say the same, Ka-go-me.” He said looking into her eyes. Kagome could feel heat rushing to her cheeks. ‘I gotta get out of here!’

“Yeah, so, I’m going to go unpack now.” Kagome said as she turned towards her bedroom. She needed to get away from him before she committed a sexual assault. Kagome stepped into her room and then remembered her bags were in her trunk still.

Kagome went back down the hall, passing the sexy God that was looking at her curiously, and headed out the front door. She proceeded to pop her trunk and heaved a suitcase out, dragging it to the front door.

As she approached the door she suddenly felt the weight leave her suitcase. She looked over her shoulder to see the sexy God lifting her suitcase off the ground.

“You should’ve told me you needed help.” He told her with the same smirk still on his face. Kagome felt her cheeks heating once again and looked away.

“I didn’t want to bother you.” She told him still looking another way. Inuyasha gave a small chuckle and walked past her, making sure to lightly brush her shoulder with his, entering the cabin. He sat the suitcase in her room and went to retrieve the other one.

Kagome closed her trunk and followed him into her room where she quickly began unpacking her clothes and putting them away. Inuyasha went to finish unpacking his own things.

After an hour she was all unpacked and officially starving. She made her way into the kitchen and roamed the fridge not finding anything of interest.

“There’s nothing good in there.” Inuyasha said from behind her. Kagome jumped and turned towards him. He stood fully dressed in a red polo with black jeans that fit hit perfectly. His hair hung loose past his shoulders and once again that smirk was on his face.

“Weren’t you taught not to sneak up on people?” She asked irritably. Her heart was still hammering in her chest. Couldn’t he announce himself like a normal person?

“I was heading out to a restaurant near here. Feel like joining me?” He asked her completely ignoring her question.

“Sure, let me just get my keys.” She made to walk past him but he grabbed her arm preventing it.

“We’ll take my car. Doesn’t make sense for us both to drive to the same place.” He told her staring into her eyes. Once again she found herself lost in the rich honey color. “Kagome.”

Kagome shook her head to clear her thoughts. “Okay. I’ll get my coat on.” She grabbed her coat from the living room and put it on as he held open the front door for her. Kagome stepped out and walked to his shiny black car while he locked the door.

He was by Kagome’s side the next minute and was holding open the car door for her. She got in and he went to his side and started the car.

The ride was silent, but Kagome didn’t mind at all seeing as her mind was keeping her pretty busy. She couldn’t understand why every time she looked into his eyes she felt lost. When he got close to her she felt like there was nobody but them in the whole world. ‘I just met him! What the hell!’

She couldn’t make heads nor tails of why she was feeling what she was feeling for the guy sitting next to her, but she knew that she liked whatever it was.

Kagome snuck a glance at him. Even the way he was driving was sexy to her. She cursed her thoughts and took to staring out the window the rest of the ride to the restaurant.

Twenty minutes later Kagome found herself being led into a old style burger joint. A waitress came over and led them to a booth towards the back and handed them menu’s.

Kagome flipped through her menu even though she already knew what she wanted. She wasn’t sure what to say to Inuyasha, everything that popped in her mind was too x-rated.

“So what brings you here?” Inuyasha asked as he looked through his menu.

“Uh, you?” Kagome answered confused. Why was he asking why she came to the restaurant when he was the one who suggested it?

Inuyasha looked up at her and arched an eyebrow. “Really? So you’ve been looking for me?” The face smirk appeared on his face again.

“N-no! What are you talking about?” Kagome asked seriously confused.

Inuyasha laughed. “I asked what brought you here, you said me.”

“Well yeah, you’re the one who brought me to the restaurant.” Kagome said as if he should’ve known. Inuyasha just laughed harder.

“I meant what brought you to the cabins.” He said once he calmed down. Realization flashed on Kagome’s face and she gave him a sheepish smile.

“Oh. Uh, I had a bad break up.” She said looking back down at her menu. She really didn’t want to talk about him right now.

“How long were you two together?” He asked out of curiosity. He didn’t really care, he was just happy she was single.

“Three years.” She answered without looking up.

“Wow, so you must still love him.” He pressed for more information.

“Hell no!” Kagome said rather loudly. She smiled apologetically to the onlookers. “Things ended badly so no, there’s no love there.”

Inuyasha studied her for a moment before responding. “What happened if you don’t mind me asking.” Kagome sat her menu aside and looked at him.

“I caught him in my bed with my sister.” Kagome said as flashes of that incident crossed her mind. Her blood boiled whenever she thought about it.

“That’s fucked up.” Inuyasha said. Whoever the guy was, he was thankful to him for fucking up and leaving Kagome a single woman.

The waitress appeared to take their orders at that moment, which Kagome was grateful for. Kagome ordered a double cheeseburger with fries and a coke while Inuyasha went for the triple stack cheeseburger with bacon, fries and a vanilla milkshake.

“So, what brings you here?” Kagome asked as the waitress left. If she was going to share her reason then he was too.

“Well, my girlfriend of two years suddenly decided that I wasn’t rich enough for her so she packed her shit and ran off with some millionaire into the sunset.” Inuyasha said dramatically causing Kagome to giggle.

Their meals came shortly after and the two enjoyed conversation while enjoying their meals. Kagome teased Inuyasha about not being able to finish his triple stack while he teased her about her actually finishing hers.

Kagome found out that Inuyasha worked as a lawyer at a high end firm. He lived somewhere close to where she lived and had attended an out of state college. She told him about her work as a paralegal and her adventures with her best friend.

By the time they made it back to the cabin it was well after midnight so they said their goodnights and headed to their respected rooms.

The rest of the week the two spent time getting to know each other better. Inuyasha told Kagome about the pranks his older brother would play on him and Kagome would tell Inuyasha about how she would tease her younger brother about girls. They had gotten pretty close in a matter of a few days and while it scared Kagome, she was also happy about it. She silently hoped that once they left they could keep in touch.

On Christmas day Kagome woke to a fresh bouquet of wildflowers on her nightstand. She grabbed the attached card and read it.

Merry Christmas
~Inuyasha
P.S. You should join me for breakfast.

Kagome smiled and raced into her bathroom to shower and brush her teeth. She still wasn’t sure what it was about Inuyasha that made the butterflies in her tummy go wild, but she didn’t care. She liked him and wanted to know more about him.

Kagome entered the kitchen and was shocked at what she saw. The entire kitchen table had a variety of breakfast foods that had her mouth watering. Inuyasha was standing beside that table with a pitcher of orange juice in his hands.

“Hey there Sleeping Beauty. I wasn’t sure what you liked so I just made everything.” Inuyasha said with a satisfied smile.

Kagome sat at the table and looked at the offerings; pancakes, sausage, omelets’, fried eggs, oatmeal, waffles, bacon, scrambled eggs, crepe’s, a fruit smoothie and grits. Yeah, he had everything all right.

“Inuyasha you didn’t have to do this.” Kagome said still slightly in shock. She couldn’t believe that he did all this just for her.

“I figure since we’re already spending Christmas together I should give you a gift of sorts.” Inuyasha shrugged and started making his plate. Kagome followed suit and the two drifted into a comfortable conversation.

Kagome’s mind was going wild all through breakfast. She knew she desired Inuyasha and not just sexually. She could see herself in a relationship with him somewhere down the line, and actually being happy. She really wanted to keep in touch with him. ‘Maybe I should just tell him.’

When they were done Kagome cleaned the dishes and the table while Inuyasha watched Christmas movies in the living room. She was trying to think of something to give him for Christmas when an idea suddenly hit her.

She ran out the kitchen and into her room where she changed into warmer clothes since it was snowing. She threw on her boots and grabbed her car keys. She said a quick “see ya later” to Inuyasha and headed to the nearest store. It took her awhile to get everything she needed but once she did she headed back to the cabin.

Inuyasha was still watching movies when she arrived, but he stood to greet her and took one of the two bags she was carrying.

“Where did you run off to so quick?” He asked her as he followed her into the kitchen. She sat her bag on the counter and motioned him to do the same.

“I’m cooking you dinner, now get out and go watch television.” Kagome said as she pushed Inuyasha out the kitchen. He laughed but went and sat down anyway.

Kagome went to her room and changed into a comfortable pair of gray sweats and a blank tank top. She went back to the kitchen and went to work on her masterpiece.

An hour and a half later Kagome had the table set and the wine poured. “Okay Inuyasha, you can come in.” She yelled to him as she sat at the table.

Inuyasha walked in and gave her the same shocked look she wore this morning. “Geez woman, you went all out didn’t you?” He sat at the table and began loading his plate with goodies. Kagome laughed and followed suit.

They had small talk as they enjoyed their dinner of filet minon, chef’s salad, croissant rolls, broccoli and double chocolate cake. Inuyasha would never admit it, but he never had a meal like that before.

“Where did you learn to cook so good?” He asked once he finished. His pants felt tighter than he remembered….

“I went to culinary school before I decided to be a paralegal.” Kagome said. Inuyasha smiled, the woman was full of surprises, but so was he.

Inuyasha stood and scooped Kagome up bridal style. Kagome made a small squeak and put her arms around his neck to hold on. He carried her to the couch and laid her on it. He then went and lit the fireplace and turned on soft music.

“Stay. I’m going to clean the kitchen. Try not to miss me too much.” Inuyasha said as he walked into the kitchen. Kagome smiled after him and snuggled up into the couch.

Her mind was going over the chances that he may want to see her once their vacation was up. She knew without a doubt that she wanted more than friendship with him. She had only known him a week, but it felt like forever. ‘This is one of those once in a lifetime situations.’

Kagome smiled at the thought. If that was true then she wouldn’t waste her chance. She wasn’t looking for marriage, but she wanted to see where things could go with them. Steeling her resolve she stood to go into the kitchen when his voice stopped her.

“Didn’t I tell you to stay?” He asked as he walked towards her with two cups in his hands. He handed her one and sat on the couch. She sat next to him and peered in her cup.

“Egg nog?” She looked at him curiously. He didn’t seem like the egg nog type. He smiled at her as if reading her thoughts.

“Yeah, my mom used to make it for me all the time.” Inuyasha stared into his cup for a moment before exhaling deeply. “Kagome?”

“Hmm?”

“Will you be mine?” Kagome’s breath stopped in her throat and her mind stopped working.

“What?” She asked hoarsely. He couldn’t have….she was hearing things. Inuyasha turned towards her and sat his cup on the coffee table. He took Kagome’s and sat her cup next to his before taking her hands into his lap. He wrapped his larger hands around hers and squeezed tightly.

“I know its only been like a week, but I feel a connection here. I’m not asking for marriage or anything serious like that. We don’t even have to be together right away, but I want, no, I need to know if there could be something between us.” He told her staring deeply into her eyes. The look he was giving her was so intense she thought her heart would stop.

“Inuyasha…”

“We can be friends.” He said quickly. “But I want to be in your life in some way.”

Kagome looked at him for what felt like an eternity before she finally found her voice. “I want to know where we could go too.” She whispered.

A large smile broke out on his face and pulled Kagome into a bone crushing hug. Kagome hugged him back before attempting to push away.

“Inuyasha…can’t…breath.” She told him between trying to catch her breath. He let her go and watched as she took in air. Once he felt she had enough he pulled her into a passionate kiss that had her toes curling and the temperature in her body screaming. It was full of so many promises that she hoped would come true.

He finally released her and gave another smile. “This is the best Christmas gift I could ever receive.” He whispered to her. She smiled at him and snuggled into his chest.

She didn’t know where they would end up, but she did know that this would forever be the best holiday she ever had.
FOR MOONSTAR9411: My First Christmas by ED Staff

Kagome smiled as she stood outside her home looking at her house that was covered with Christmas lights. She didn't even seem to feel the cold as it softly snowed. She just loved to look at the lights

" Kagome come inside dear before you get sick "

Kagome smiled at her mother " yes momma " she looked up at the lights again before she walked inside

" hey sis you think Inuyasha will be visiting soon?

Kagome looked at her younger brother sota and made a face " I hope not! " though she knew he would come for her since she said she'd be back two nights again. She was shocked he hadn't already come"

she ran up to her room knowing she had to get back before he did come to get her. She glanced around not seeing her half demon friend. The man she loved, she blushed brightly. Now wasn't the time to be thinking about that! " she just ran around her room getting everything ready not seeing her window open until she heard a male's voice

" there you are witch!!! "

Kagome jumped and turned yelling " sit boy!! " she flinched as Inuyasha slammed into the floor of her room, though she was happy he fell inside and not outside " oh!! Inuyasha I'm so sorry!! 

She seen him glare at her and knew he had a reason to be angry " honest , you scared me and I reacted, will you forgive me?

Inuyasha just looked at her able to tell she was sorry " just forget it, but your late so I came to get you"

" I'm sorry but I was helping put up the lights for Christmas

Inuyasha just looked confused " what is a Chris -- mas "? Is it some type of demon?

Kagome giggled he looked so cute as his ears twitched looking so confused " no Christmas is a holiday " she sighed when he just looked more confused. She forgot sometimes that he wouldn't know what a holiday was " look its a day when ---" she jumped when her bedroom door opened and sota ran in

" Inuyasha!! I thought I heard your voice , you have to come and see my new game!

Kagome looked at him annoyed " sota how many times do I have to tell you to knock before entering my roo--" she stopped as she watched sota drag out a very confused Inuyasha " oh well I could always explain Christmas to him later

she ran out her room moments later hearing Inuyasha yell something about a demon tree. She yelled " sit boy " just as he was going to attack their Christmas tree " Inuyasha that's not a demon!! , its just a tree with lights on it "

Inuyasha growled at her as he slammed into the ground" ' will you stop with that word!!!! " he looked at the tree " why would you put lights on a tree?

Kagome smiled and took him outside so he could see the house " we also put them on houses, isn't it beautiful? I just love Christmas lights "

" why? What's the point in doing it?

" well hmm. It is just nice , now let me tell you about Christmas". She walks to the tree as she sits beside him as she tells him about gifts and Santa

" so you have seen this Santa? Is he a demon?

" well no, he isn't real, only little kids believe in him, when you get older you stop believing "

Inuyasha just shakes his head. It was to confusing " you said people get gifts?

" yes from family and friends and you also give gifts, it is so much fun to unwrap gifts "

Inuyasha just looks thoughtful until he hears Kagome's next words "

"Well since we are talking I'd like to stay a few more days "

Inuyasha growled as he stood up " no!! You are already late and we have shards to found, so lets go!! " he would never come out and tell her he had missed her and didn't like it when she wasn't at his side, he felt alone even though the others was there

Kagome got up slowly " Inuyasha, Christmas is in two days, I won't be missing it, even if i have to S you until your back is broken!! I wish to be here with my family!!

Inuyasha growled at her " fine stay here for all I care!!! He just went and jumped into the well back to his own time

-----------------

Kagome stood looking out her window, it was Christmas and yet she didn't feel as happy as she should

" why don't you go get him dear?

Kagome looked at her mother " you mean Inuyasha? He wouldn't wish to be here "

" I'm betting he does, you said he has no family but a half brother that wants him died am I right? When Kagome nodes. She just smiled "well we are waiting on him , after all, we can't have Christmas without the whole family right?

Kagome smiles brightly and hugs her mother before she runs and jumps into the well to go get the other member of their family --------------

Inuyasha sat on the tree as he looked up at the sky. He was annoyed that Kagome sent him home " damn witch, she knows we have shards to find. He sighs as his ears went down slightly, he knew the truth was he missed her. He thought of going after her but remembered that Christmas thing" meant for families and I have no family but Kagome does so how could I ask her to come back with me? "

his ears twitched as he stood up fast " that's Kagome's scent!! He jumped off the tree and ran to the well just as she was getting out " what are you doing here witch?

Kagome smiled at him " we can't start Christmas yet, one member is missing

Inuyasha looked confused he didn't know why she was telling him but he looked shocked when he heard her next words " we are waiting for you Inuyasha "

he just stood there shocked " waiting for me? He thought but before he could say anything he seen the smile leave her face " was she regretting coming now? " but he sniffed and turned knowing that scent " kikyo" he looked back at Kagome

Kagome gave Inuyasha a sad smile " you better go, she's waiting " she smiled trying to hide her sadness not willing to show her tears

" Kagome I --- "

Its alight Inuyasha there is always next year right? She gave him a smile before she jumped into the well. Inuyasha just stood there before he looked at kikyo as she stepped out of the shadows

" there you are Inuyasha, come let us talk I have heard rumors of some jewel shards, we could go together, to spend some time together as while " she held her hand out to him and smiled as he walked towards her but the smile disppeared at his words "

I can't Kagome has invited me for Christmas "

she just stared at him " and what is this Christmas?

" its where family's get together to spend time together and give gifts " he smiled softly as he walked back to the well with his hands on it

" but your not her family , you are alone just as I am, we are the same "

" no kikyo we are not the same anymore, because of Kagome I am not alone " he went to jump but stopped at her next words

" doses she mean more to you then I do? Will you leave me and go to her? When you said I was the woman you love

Inuyasha looked at her slowly " I did love you kikyo and now I wish to revenge your death and to let you rest In peace but -- " he looked towards the well then back at her " because of Kagome I started to live again , to make friends, to learn to trust, to feel I was fine the way I am now a half demon, because of Kagome I learned to love again, she is my family now and she's waiting for me

" if you go you truly are choosing her"

Inuyasha looked at the woman he once loved and smiled softly before he jumped into the well where the woman he loved now was waiting

-------------

Kagome wipped the tears away after climbing out of the well. She had been so happy at the thought of having Inuyasha there for Christmas only for kikyo to show up. She sighed as she opened the door to the well house and looked at the falling snow. before she walked inside the house slowly

" hey sis where is Inuyasha? Mom said he was coming to spend it with us "

" he had someone else to go see, so lets just go open up gifts OK?

Sota watched her walk towards their living room and though she smiled at him, he knew it was forced. He just sighed and followed her before he sat watching her talk to their mother. He hated to see the sadness in her eyes,

" well should we start opening gifts? Their mother asked though they nodded it was easy to see they wasn't as happy as they should be since Inuyasha had yet to get there " hello Inuyasha dear " she thought to herself as she looked behind Kagome

Kagome smiled weakly as she looked at everyone " you want to go first sota? She blinked when he simply stared at something behind her . She turned slowly and looked shocked seeing Inuyasha "

" hey witch you forgot me, you invite me then run off "

before him or her could say anything he was pulled down by sota to sit beside him and Kagome. He looked unsure as he looked at them, but soon he found himself smiling as he got into the whole gift giving thing. He was shocked that even he got gifts. Though he never said how happy he felt being there, feeling like he truly did have a family " Inuyasha? Will you come outside we Me to the tree" Kagome smiled when he nodded and got up and walked outside .

She was still shocked he had come. She wanted to ask him about kikyo but just couldn't. So she just sat under the tree with him " I am really happy you came Inuyasha, I know what Christmas gift I'm going to give you "

she smiled softly at his confused look so instead of saying anything she reached up wrapping her hands around his beaded necklace but looked shocked when he put his hand in hers to stop her " Inuyasha?

Inuyasha just shook his head no. For some reason he hated the thought of her taking it off. It was almost like if she did, it would be like breaking their link together " just leave it on witch , you may need it

" then what Christmas gift should I give you?

" you already gave me one, you made me feel like a really did have a family, but I have to give you, yours

Kagome smiled at them words " oh Inuyasha, I don't need a gift, I'm just happy you cam-- she looked shocked when he leaned down and kissed her softly, she blushed brightly but closed her eyes and kissed him back, when they pulled apart she started to cry gently, happy tears when she heard him whisper I love you. " she wrapped her arms around him as she whispered I love you too "

_---------------

Kagome glared at Inuyasha when they climbed out of the well to his time " I told you I wasn't ready to come back yet!!! "

" well to bad!! We wasted enough time, we have to find them shards!!!! So move it witch

" sit boy !!!!!!!! " she glanced at him before she started walking before she smiled when she heard him yelling her name. She looked at him as he walked over to her glaring but she only smiled and took his hand and knew.

This was the most wonderful Christmas she'd ever had because Inuyasha was there with her.

FOR ASAGI-K-KUROSAKI: The Effort Was Worth It by ED Staff
For what seemed like the tenth time Inuyasha threw his right hand up in frustration while his left hand held his current nemesis in place. Flexing his fingers to pop every knuckle his claw-like hand twitched with eagerness to slice this foe into ribbons. Having a sudden change of heart, the snarl on his face was replaced with a scowl as he harrumphed at the package, and hid both hands in the sleeves of his haori.

“Stupid Kagome and her stupid Christmas,” he groused. “Why’s she always gotta try to make me do this stupid stuff anyway? Sango and Miroku aren’t sitting around, missing hair off their ears cause they snatched a piece of tape off their head. And that stupid Shippo would probably love to be sitting in the middle of this pile of wrapping paper, making an even bigger mess than I am just trying to wrap this stupid box.” Disgusted, Inuyasha spun his back on the box, and continued to sit in the middle of Mrs. Higurashi’s green paper and gold ribbon strewn living room, occasionally flicking an ear that was missing a tuft of fur.

This whole Christmas mess had started once the cold weather had really set in with snow and freezing winds. Kagome came back from her time to explain her school was observing Christmas break, which meant she wouldn’t have to be there as often, and she had time to catch up on her homework. Everyone was quite pleased with her revelation considering how cold it had gotten. No one wanted to wander outside unless they absolutely had to, being content to stay huddled around the fire under blankets. Of course Inuyasha was unhappy hearing about how they would be stuck in the village for the next two weeks, and started complaining about his friends being weaklings. Kagome would have none of his nonsense, telling him if he was going to ruin her story he could go outside in the cold by himself, but to make sure he closed the panel securely behind him on the way out. Then she sat down next to the fire to share a blanket with Shippo while she told the story Twas A Night Before Christmas.

Sango and Miroku wanted to know as much about the origins of the story and the Christmas traditions as Kagome knew. Shippo only focused on the part about presents. When Kagome read How the Grinch Stole Christmas Shippo made a comment about the Grinch sounding like Inuyasha, which gave everyone a good laugh. Kagome’s enthusiasm for the holiday caught like wildfire, and she had everyone making decorations to hang around Kaede’s hut. He was just thankful the activities kept the runt out of his hair.

When Inuyasha went back to Kagome’s time her mother pulled her aside and gave him a box with a pretty silver hair comb in it for him to wrap and give to Kagome. Then Mrs. Higurashi gave Inuyasha a roll of green wrapping paper, gold ribbon, tape and scissors, and sent him to the living room to wrap his gift while she finished supper. It all happened so fast he didn’t know what to do with himself. He gave a shrug, thinking, “How hard can it be? I’ve seen people wrap packages lots of times.” What he didn’t take into consideration was the tape.

Sitting in the middle of the living room floor Inuyasha sat the box in front of him and he supplies to the side. He unrolled the paper and sliced it with the claw on his pointer finger, not giving the scissors a second thought. He put the box in the middle of the paper, wrapped the paper around it, and reached for the bow. He cut a length off the same as he did with the paper, and went to wrap it around and tie it off when Souta came in.

“Hey, Inuyasha, whatcha doin’?”

“What’s it look like I’m goin’? I’m wrapping this box for Kagome.”

“Well, don’t use too much tape or she’ll never be able to open it.”

“Tape?”

Sota gestured to the spool of clear film. “Yeah, that stuff right there is sticky on the bottom and will keep the wrapping paper and ribbon in place, but if you use too much Kagome can’t open the paper. The tape isn’t easy to tear.”

Inuyasha put the pad of his finger to the underside of the spool, and sure enough, it stuck. As he tried to pull his hand away a long strand of tape followed. Giving his arm a swift yank the spool went crazy, flinging tape all over his clothes. Using his other hand he sliced cleanly through the continuous strand of sticky horror, he threw the dispenser across the room. The further away the better. Redirecting his attention back to the tape he slowly started to wad it up into a ball until he felt a tug on his right ear. Cocking his eyebrow up he tilted his head so slightly to see the strand of tape coming from his head. Giving his tape ball a tug verified it was stuck to the hair on his ear. The ear twitched as if anticipating the abuse that was sure to come. Giving a hard yank the tape came loose, the ear got yanked, and some of its hair was snatched off. Now he was raising his hand in the first of many attempts to use his claws to obliterate the offending box, and everything that went with it. He should have ignored Sota about that spool of hellish stickiness and wrapped Kagome’s gift the best way he knew how instead of sulking in the living room with his back to the box.

Steeling his resolve, Inuyasha picked up the box, his sheet of wrapping paper, and his strand of ribbon and went to the well house. He knew out there he would have the time he needed to wrap Kagome’s gift without extra any extra input to muck things up. Fifteen minutes later Inuyasha emerged triumphant, ready to put his gift under the tree for Christmas morning. Thank goodness he only had to wait for two days.

Inuyasha was startled from his dozing sleep by Kagome suddenly jumping out of bed and landing, crouched, in front of where he was sitting on the floor at the end of her bed. It was barely sunrise, and they appeared to be the first awake.

“Inuyasha! It’s Christmas! Come on! We have to wake everyone else up!” To his amazement Kagome sped through her bedroom door, and he could hear her down the hall waking everyone in her excitement. For someone who wasn’t a morning person she had an awful lot of energy today. Standing up Inuyasha tossed her sword on her bed and followed her out into the house.

Reaching the bottom of the staircase Inuyasha had to suppress a laugh as he saw Kagome and Sota sitting cross-legged on opposite sides of the tree. Their legs were bouncing as they sat on their hands, trying to not to touch anything. Mrs. Higurashi came in from the kitchen with a cup of tea in hand, and wished everyone Merry Christmas. Sitting down on the couch she waited for Inuyasha to take a seat next to Kagome, then appointed Sota as Santa. The morning progressed with him passing out gifts that were swiftly divested of their decoration to get to the goodies inside. Finally, it was time for Inuyasha to give Kagome his gift. Blushing furiously he took the box from under the tree and handed it to her.

“Here. I hope you like it.” Once she took the box from his hand, Inuyasha quickly stuffed his hands in his sleeves. He watched anxiously as Kagome carefully untied the golden ribbon, and removed the festive, green paper. As her hands worked he became more nervous, worrying if she would like his gift. He may not have picked it out or bought it, but it was a gift from his heart nonetheless. Her gasp made his eyes snap up to her face, and his anxiety skyrocketed.

“Inuyasha! It’s beautiful! I’ve never seen anything like it!” Kagome carefully took the silver comb from its box, wrapped her hair up, and used the comb to pin it in place. “How do I look?” She smiled, practically preening with pride over her new treasure.

“Beautiful.” Inuyasha leaned forward and gave Kagome a quick peck on the cheek, before quickly looking away, embarrassment written all over his face. Her smile over a simple, silver comb was the best gift he could have received.
FOR ASAGI-K-KUROSAKI: Two Of A Kind by ED Staff
Kagome Higurashi was half immersed in a rather large bin full of various hats. She had entered Madame Gisou's Costume Palace sometime earlier that afternoon looking for the final touches for her geisha costume. Her friends were hosting a masquerade party for New Years, and she only had a few hours to pull together something to wear. Because of this, she decided to do something relatively easy. Seeing as how most of her time was spent in the feudal era it wasn’t hard for her to get an accurate costume. Behind her Inuyasha huffed for what seemed like the thousandth time since they had walked in the shop. It was apparent he was bored but he had insisted on tagging along.

Inuyasha was coming with her to the party. Kagome had decided that the hanyou wouldn’t stick out in his fire rat or his usual appearance so there had been no need to consider a costume for him. It was one thing she had been thankful for. After much begging on her part Inuyasha had finally agreed to let Kagome come back to her time with one exception. Him. So he followed her through the well.

At first she thought he was upset with her because she has stalled their hunt for shards again. However when he had insisted to tag along Kagome couldn’t help but be a little concerned.

I don’t know why he insisted on coming with me. He hates my side of the well. She thought, a slight suspicious look floating across her face. Kagome took a glance over her shoulder looking at her hanyou. His eyes were closed and his head was down. He was leaning against a wall next to a large mirror that met the floor.

What Kagome didn’t realize was he had a good reason for coming with her. The last time he had come to collect her; Inuyasha had overheard Kagome and those three girls talking. They said that Hobo guy would be at the party. If he had anything to do with it, Inuyasha wasn’t going to let Hobo get anywhere near Kagome. She belonged to him. He had come with her not only to keep an eye on her, but to protect her from her friends, even if Kagome didn’t see it that way.

Kagome had moved to the section with all of the robes, hoping something would speak to her. While she dug through the rack of clothes and bins of matching accessories, she didn’t realize Inuyasha had found the section with all of the animal costumes.

Inuyasha opened his eyes. True to his nature, he was well aware of every move Kagome made. He had noticed her peeking at him though his half-shut eyes, knowing she had not realized he was watching her. A smirk danced across his lips as golden eyes followed the miko. When he briefly disappeared behind a rack Inuyasha adjusted his position trying to keep Kagome in sight. A flash to his left caught his attention. Looking over, he saw to his astonishment, a bear. Its paws were raised as if poised to strike. On instinct, Inuyasha drew his claws as he sniffed the air around him. It was only then that he caught sight of several other animals. All of which were unmoving and not alive. What is this? He thought stepping over for a closer look.

The Hanyou was amazed. He was surrounded by fur; striped, spotted and solid colors were everywhere. Animals he didn’t even recognize stared back at him through empty eyes. There were dogs and wolves panthers and small cats. One large costume in particular caught his eye. A large white wolf complete with a tail was lying across the top of one rack. That one looks like my baka of a brother, Inuyasha thought with a small laugh.
As he explored this new area his clawed hands couldn’t help but to reach out and touch the fur. It was soft, but strange. Something wasn’t right. The fur bristled on his touch, the ends prickling his hands.

Kagome was so intent upon her search she had started to ignore a certain hanyou. With her not there to explain things, he had found something else that had caught his attention. A large box full of headbands with what appeared to be various animal ears sat on a table. His confusion caused him to address the miko.

“What are these?” he said, digging through the pile until something else caught his eye.

“Hmm?”

“This thing. They…they look like mine.” He said, pulling one pair out of the box. He held it up to his face, inspecting the strange material.
Confused, Kagome looked up from the bin she was currently digging in. To her surprise, Inuyasha was holding a pair of white, furry, dog ears between his claws.

“Oh. They’re dog ears.” Kagome said with a half-hearted shrug, resuming her search.

“Keh.” Inuyasha said, with his usual smirk. “I can see that woman. I mean how do they work? What are they for?”

“Oh.” She laughed and took a few steps closer to him.

“You put them on. It’s a costume piece. People wear them on their heads and they look like you.” She replied, as she reached up, removing his hat and touched one of his ears. The hanyou closed his eyes at her touch, leaning into her hand as her fingers nimbly scratched his head. After a moment, she smiled at him and patted his head before taking a step back.

It took the hanyou a moment to realize she had stopped and how much he missed it.

Opening his eyes, Inuyasha saw Kagome running her hands over a strange blue robe thing that sparkled. She seemed lost in thought. However he wasn’t done with her…yet. His curiosity was not satisfied.

“Do you?”

“What?” she replied, turning her blue eyes back on him.
“Do you ever wear them?”

“No.” Kagome said with a roll of her eyes. “I don’t. I’m usually with you in the feudal era anyway.” She sighed, and continued. “Not that I’m complaining. I just don’t dress up much. Besides, those headbands always annoy me.”

“Keh.”

“Why are you so interested in those?” Kagome asked, quirking a brow at Inuyasha. The headband was still dangling from his claws as he inspected the white, furry triangles. The image made her smile.
Golden orbs met hers as he smirked again. “Seeing as how you seem to love mine, I thought you’d love to have your own.”

“That’s diff-“

He thrust the headband in her face. “Here put them on.”

“I don’t want to.”

“Save it woman. I wanna see how you look with ears like mine”
“We’re wasting time! I need to finish my costume! I don’t want to be late getting home.” She frowned and started to the tap her foot. Her patience was starting to wear thin.

“Why not?” He said. “You know you want to.”

Taken aback by his strange behavior Kagome just remained silent and turned her back to him. Heading over to the other side of the shop, she stared at the various costumes. She wasn’t really seeing them as her thoughts were still with the hanyou.

What is with him lately? He’s acting really strange. She took another peek at the hanyou. He had a strange look on his face. Deciding that it wasn’t anything, Kagome turned her back towards him again trying to focus on the material in front of her.

Not taking no for an answer, Inuyasha crossed the distance between them and place the headband on Kagome’s head. He shoved them on, with a bit more force than necessary. Glaring at him, she gave him a warning. “Inuyasha, don’t make me say it!” With a mischievous glint in his eye, he shrugged. “Now you know how I feel.”

“Good puppy!” Inuyasha said with a small laugh. Kagome wasn’t amused. She looked a little irritated. He loved seeing that look on her face. It was quite amusing to see the girl from the future annoyed. At least she wasn’t angry.

“You look an Inu!” He said grabbing her shoulders. He drug the miko by her arm over to the large mirror till they both stood in front of it. His smirk was wide compared to her frown. Indeed she match him, though the white ears clashed with her raven hair. Still, his excitement was starting to win her over until he decided to continue. We’re two of a kind you and me! Though…..” He said, one claw scraping across his jawline. “I think I like mine better.”

OWSARI!!


Fin
FOR DEVAIGH: Her Kiss by ED Staff
Title: Her Kiss

Inuyasha watched Kagome wave goodbye as she jumped into the well. Transporting her back to her own time. He hated when she left, but if it made her happy he would endure it.

The winter snow had already fallen once and frozen the ground. Inuyasha perched himself into the sacred tree where he met Kagome for the first time. Not long ago, he almost lost her. Inuyasha flinched at that thought. The memory haunted his thoughts the past week.

XxXFlashbackXxX

Naraku squeezed his tentacle arm tightly around Kagome's petite form. She welped in pain.

"Kagome!!" Inuyasha screamed.

"I will take back the heart of the woman my weak human self fell in love with. Her reincarnated heart." Naraku sinisterly chuckled. A tentacle raised and transforming into a hand with razors for fingers. Directed towards Kagome body. Inuyasha's chest stopped pounding.

'No. I can't lose her.' He thought. Without hesitation, he lept up with faster speed than ever before. He sliced the hand clean off with Tetsaiga. Naraku was shocked. In an attempt to reclaim the situation, he tried engulfing Kagome into his skin. She screamed in fear. Inuyasha's eyes flew to her. He was at her side in a moment. He cut the disgusting flesh that wrapped around his love. He lifted her into his arms and jumped away from the now hurting Naraku to safety.

Gently, he laid Kagome down on the ground behind him. "Are you alright Kagome?" He whispered. She looked up at him and nodded weakly. He kissed her forehead before turning back to the battle. He was not in the mood for this right now. He focused on his blade. And then his target. His anger raging. His demonic wind swirled the area.

"You die now Naraku!!" He yelled lifting his sword. "Backlash Wave!"

The ripping tornadoes ravished the land heading towards its master's desired target. Naraku wasn't fast enough to move out of the way. It began tearing through the tainted skin of his deformed body. As always, however, he created a barrier around his head. Inuyasha snarled. Naraku frowned before transporting elsewhere.

He sighed and turned back to Kagome. She had passed out from pain and exhaustion. He held her close still knelt to the ground. Even though he was mad, he was also grateful. Grateful she was alive.

XxX End FlashbackXxX

'That damn Naraku.' He thought bitterly. He has always hated the bastard but he almost took it way too far. Inuyasha was forced to attempt to visualize his life without her that day. There was nothing. He would have lost his mind.

All he wanted now was to make her the happiest person he could. Anything she wanted, he would make sure she had. He has tried to show her his feelings since that day in little ways. He hasn't flat out said that he loves her yet. He doesn't know if he was what she wanted.

"Inuyasha?" Called an older, frail voice from the base of the tree. Inuyasha snapped back from his thoughts. He looked down and saw it was only Kaede, out picking herbs for some of the sick villagers. "What are ye doing sitting out in the cold all alone?" She asked. Inuyasha huffed.

"What are you doing all by yourself in the cold? I think it's you who shouldn't be out here on your own. Not me." He said with sarcasm. Kaede only giggled. Inuyasha always got annoyed easily when he is caught thinking of Kagome.

"Inuyasha, ye know that Christmas will be here tomorrow." She said, starting to walk away. Inuyasha's ears twitched. He jumped down and walked with her for a little while.

"What do ye plan to give her?" Kaede finally broke the silence. Inuyasha didn't say anything. He just stared ahead. "Well, I think ye should really consider giving her something to show her how ye feel." She said, picking the last frost covered herb she needed. She began walking towards the village and Inuyasha stopped following.

Kaede paused and looked back. "Inuyasha? Aren't ye coming?" She asked.

"I'll catch up later." He replied, turning and running back into his namesake forest. She only grinned. Proud of the seed she planted in Inuyasha's mind. Little did Kaede know that Inuyasha had already thought of something but couldn't decide to give it to her or not. She helped him made that decision. He would do it.

Inuyasha sped through the forest heading in the direction of where he and Kagome parted ways. The Bone Eater's Well. He reached its frail looking wooden brim and could still smell the sweet residing scent of Kagome.

He paused as he placed a hand on the chilled wood. 'I'll be with you soon, Kagome.' His mind echoed her name. He jumped into the well and was enveloped in the blue magical light.

XxX

Kagome climbed the rickety ladder out of the well and sighed in relief as she reached the top. She climbed over the ledge and made her way to the well house doors. She was greeted by the bright sun with a chilly breeze. A fresh sheet of snow covered the ground and Kagome was happy for her coat and scarf. She hugged them closer to her as she briskly walked towards the house.

She slid the door open and quickly shut it behind her, not wanting to let the home's heat out. She slipped off her shoes, scarf and coat before rushing to the dining room to find her much missed family.

"Mom! Grandpa! Sota!" She called. Everyone was sitting around the table staring at the door way where Kagome now stood. Her mother got up excitedly and greeted her daughter with a hug. Kagome was so happy to see her family after so long of being gone. But something was missing. She didn't feel complete in her own home, even with her family. Someone was missing. Someone close to her heart.

'Inuyasha.' She thought, closing her eyes and picturing his amber eyes and fanged grin she loved so much. A small smile graced her lips. Just thinking about him made her happy.

"Kagome, dear, we were just sitting down for our Christmas Eve diner. Will you be able to stay and eat with us?" Her mother offered sweetly. Kagome nodded happily. They all returned to their places at the table and Kagome joined them.

A wonderful, festive meal covered the top of the table and Kagome was more than eager to dig in. So she did. Her mother, grandpa and Sota all laughed at her appetite. They joined in eating and laughing in each others company.

"Hey sis! Where is Inuyasha? Shouldn't he be with you?" Sota asked, wanting to play with his sister's boy toy again. She sighed.

"He let me come home to see you guys a while for the holiday!" She told them with a fake smile. She was happy to see her family, but she wanted him to come with her. She finished the contents of the bowl in front of her.

"Thanks for the meal mom!" She thanked, before bowing and excusing herself upstairs. She decided to take a quick bath and relax in her room for a while. She collapsed forward into her bed sheets with a towel still wrapped around her.

All she could think about was Inuyasha. She wasn't sure why, but she felt so close to him lately. Like he was letting her get close. She sighed once again and got up to put on some pjs.

She plopped back down, on her back this time. Staring at the ceiling. Picturing Inuyasha's strong features illuminated her mind. She closed her eyes, wishing he would appear.

Her window silently slid open and Inuyasha inspected the room, finding his love lying on her bed. He grinned slightly and entered the room, silently shutting the window behind him.

A chill ran down Kagome's spine from an unexpected cold breeze. She opened her eyes as she sat up to look for the source. Inuyasha pressed his lips into hers. Kagome was shocked, but didn't want to stop it. She relaxed and kissed him back. Inuyasha pulled back to look into her eyes. He could see the surprise filling her face.

'He has never showed this much affection before.' Her mind raced. They were both in ecstasy in each others presence.

He pulled her into his arms for an embrace they both desired. Kagome wrapped her arms around him as her cheeks dusted with pink. She had wanted this display of her emotions for so long and now he was right here in front of her, pouring out his. Her Christmas wish came true.

"Kagome." His voice broke through her thoughts. She looked up into his soft and loving expression. "I know I haven't shown you how I've felt for a long time, but I'm unable to picture my life without you." He said. The image of Naraku flashed through her mind. She flinched slightly. Inuyasha saw her reaction and his heart broke. He hugged her tighter to his chest protectively. "I'll never let anyone hurt you. I promise." He whispered to soothe her mind. "But I don't want to spend another minute away from you." He pulled back from her hold. He reached into his fire rat kimono and pulled out a stone mounted on a slender piece of metal. A ring. Kagome gasped. The stone sparked pink with swirls of white."Kagome, will you marry me?" He asked. Kagome felt the tears of joy filling her eyes.

"Yes! Of course I will!" She replied. Inuyasha excitedly placed the ring on her finger and she threw herself into him once more. Inuyasha was filled with relief and happiness. All he could do was smile as her rubbed her back to calm his new fiancé.

When she finally settled down, she whipped her eyes and looked to him. "But when how did you get this Inuyasha?" She asked looking at the mesmerizing ring on her finger.

"After that day, I went to Totosai and asked him to make a ring to show my love for you. He took one of my fangs and merged it with a love stone customizing it specifically for you." He explained. "No one will ever have the same love I have for you and that ring is proof. But if you don't like it, I can have him make whatever ring you want." He told her franticly. Scared she was unhappy with his choice. Kagome placed a hand on his cheek, forcing him to look into her eyes.

"It is the most beautiful ring I could ever ask for. I wouldn't trade it for the world." She said, leaning in for a kiss to seal their magical Christmas engagement. Inuyasha flipped her onto her back, hovering over top of her.

"Kagome, you don't know how much I love. I always have." He said softly. Kagome felt her heart and stomach fluttering.

"I have too Inuyasha. Always." She whispered, scared of choking on her words. He leaned in slowly, pausing less than inches from her lips. The intensity thickened the air with each passing second.

Inuyasha finally broke his hesitation. Kissing Kagome's soft pink lips. As slow and passionate kiss. Kagome held her breath. Her lungs stopped pumping her much needed air.

Inuyasha became more aggressive in his kisses. Not wanting to stop. Ever. He would kiss her lips forever. He was intoxicated. Nothing could be better.

He pulled back so Kagome could take a breath. She panted deeply. But not for more than a minute. Inuyasha couldn't resist her lips. Her kisses. He places a hand on her hip. Kagome tangled her fingers though Inuyasha's silky, silver hair. His hand wandered further up her side.

It felt as if there was an aura surrounding them. Creating a world with only them in it. No one else could possible exist. The love they shared for one another could never be matched.

'I was destined to live for her.'

'I will love him for all eternity.'
FOR CUTIEKAY182009 by ED Staff
“Congratulations mam, you’re 2 months pregnant!” the doctor had told her. Sure, she wanted kids, but she thought it would be a while before her and Inuyasha would have any. Oh god, how would he take the news? Hell, how would she tell him? And what a perfect time of year too. She could just picture it

“Hey baby, I’m pregnant, Merry Christmas!”

Yeah, that would go over well. She came to the doctors this morning thinking she had caught some sort of flu, expecting some antibiotics and to be sent on her way. Instead, she came out rubbing her belly wondering how the hell it happened. Well, ok that’s silly, she thought with a blush. But she and Inuyasha had been quite careful. They were still in their first year of marriage and had wanted to wait to have children. She needed to talk to someone. Immediately, she dialed her best friend.

“Sango, I have something to tell you” she started to say.

“You’re pregnant aren’t you?” Sango replied as if it were no shock. How the hell did this woman always know what the heck was going on?

“How the flip did you know? I swear you have some sixth sense or something!” Kagome exclaimed.

“I’m psychic” Sango zinged back and laughed. Kagome honestly wondered if she really was, but didn’t reply.

“So, how do you plan on telling Inuyasha?”

“That’s just it Sango. I don’t know! I’m scared! I know he wouldn’t reject the baby, but how will he take the news? I don’t know what to do!”

“Ok, calm down my love. Do you need to meet me somewhere?”

“No, I just need time to think. I mean, Christmas is two days away, this is just so crazy it happening right now.”

“It’s ok Kagome, I think he’ll take it fine. Take a walk or something, calm down, and just take your time and tell him. It will be alright.”

“Ok Sango, thanks for talking to me. Sorry I’m such a blubbery mess” Kagome said as she wiped a stray tear.

“No problem, what are friends for? I’ll catch you later babe. Bye!”

“Bye” Kagome replied back and hung up the phone.

She drove for a little while, and then went home. By the time she got home, she had calmed down and accepted the idea, but she still couldn’t bring herself to tell her husband. As they laid down for bed and he wrapped his arms around her, she silently wondered if he would really be ok with the idea. She was going to be up all night.

Inuyasha knew something was wrong with Kagome. She had been sick recently and he was worried. She was supposed to go to the doctor today, but she had yet to speak of it. Was something wrong? Oh god, what if she had some sort of disease and was afraid to tell him? He couldn’t handle it. He wanted to ask her, but wanted her to volunteer the information herself. He knew how her temper could flare when he kept prodding. So as he wrapped his arm around her as they lay in bad, he inhaled her scent, and sent a silent prayer to the heavens praying his beautiful wife was alright.

The next morning Kagome got up early. She and Sango were doing some last minute shopping, and then later tonight, her, Sango, Miroku, and Inuyasha would have dinner together at a restaurant across town. She still hadn’t told him. She decided she’d tell him on Christmas and gradually lead up to it. No need to do it now before meeting friends and freak him out. No, she certainly could ---

Before she could finish the thought, she was in the bathroom hugging the toilet bowl. Man, she had to endure nine months of this? Damn.
Inuyasha rushed in after her, frantic and worried, fussing over her in a manner that was almost irritating. But she knew he did it because he loved her. Grimacing, she shooed Inuyasha out and cleaned herself up. She had to meet Sango soon.

After she cleaned up, Inuyasha all but blocked her from the door, insisting she stay home. They fought, until he finally relented and let her go. She kissed him on the cheek and headed out the door.

-------------

The shopping trip had been successful. Kagome even bought a few things for the baby. Wow, it was so weird to say it still, but seeing all the clothes and toys and other baby things had Kagome wanting this baby so bad, she could have bought half the store! She settled for a few onsies and tees, deciding to go the cliché’ route and package them up and presenting them as a gift to Inuyasha. Hopefully he wasn’t entirely clueless as to what they meant.

The dinner with Miroku and Sango went well, and everyone had a good time. Inuyasha was shocked Kagome hadn’t ordered her usual Cosmopolitan, and Miroku smirked at her with an all knowing smile. Shit. He knew too. Damn Sango and her big mouth! Hopefully neither had told Inuyasha. She doubted it though, he seemed oblivious.
Tomorrow morning, she would tell him. She had to.

------

Inuyasha woke up to his beautiful wife already making breakfast. She looked beautiful as always, but still, something was off, and he was worried. She still refused to talk about her visit to the doctor.
After they ate some breakfast, they started to open the few presents between the two of them. He had bought her the new Kindle, some lingerie, a necklace, and some perfume. She had bought him a new I-pod, cologne, and a new suit for work. And then she shyly pulled out her last gift.

“I wanted to save this one for last. I hope you like it” she said looking worried. He wondered why. It could be a box of coal, and he’d still love it. It came from her.

He started to open it, wondering what on earth could have made her so worried. Finally, he opened the box and a bunch of small articles of clothing fell out. He sat there stunned. What the heck?

“Um, Kagome, I think you mistook my gift for someone else. I hate to break it to you, but these clothes seem a bit small”

“It’s no mistake Inuyasha, look again”

He looked and looked and still he didn’t understand. Why would she buy such small clothes? It didn’t make sense. Maybe these were for their niece?

“Are you sure these aren’t for Rin? You know, my bastard of a brother’s daughter?”

“I am absolutely certain. You know, I rather like the name Sofia. Or Kyo.”

He looked at her puzzled. Why was she telling him names?

“Kagome are you alright? What happened at the doctor? Oh god, are you going delusional and only have a few months left to live?” he asked as he started to look about frantically

Kagome gritted her teeth. This was not going as planned. He was more clueless than she ever thought capable!

“No, Inuyasha, I’m not suffering from any kind of illness. Well, not really anyway. I will be getting sick for the next few months in the mornings though” she said hoping it would finally register.

“Oh god, Kagome, please just tell me what is wrong. You don’t have to hide from me. We’ll get through whatever disease it is you have, just please tell me so we can work through this together and talk to a doctor.”

“Idiot, I’m not sick and I don’t have a disease!”

“Kagome, I know whatever the doctor told you was hard to accept---“

“I suppose it was at first” she muttered under her breath.

“Oh god, so you are sick. What is it Kagome, just tell me, I can handle it. I promise” he said suddenly sounding sad.

“I’m not sick, dammit, I’m pregnant you moron!” she said with a high pitched inflection to her voice.

“Oh god, what does that even mean? Preenant? I’ve never heard of this disease! But it’s ok, we’ll ---“

“I’m PREGNANT you fool! Pregnant! You know, like you’re sperm fertilizing my egg and all that? My belly will start getting round and fat? Pregnant as a baby will pop out of my ---“

“Oh god, why didn’t you just say that from the beginning!” he exclaimed. Oh no. He was upset.

“I tried you idiot!”

“Kagome, I can’t believe ---“

“I knew you’d be upset” Kagome started to tear up

“No, actually I’m very hap—“

“Stop trying to make me feel better. The shock is all over your face”

“Well of course I’m shocked baby, but in a good way" Kagome looked up from him, nose red and sniffling.

“Are you really? You’re not mad? I was worried you’d be upset since we had talked about having kids later”

“No, I’m not mad, and silly woman, while that may have been the plan, plans never really work for us do they? We gotta go with the flow, and I gotta tell ya, right now, after this news, I’m suddenly feeling the need to get my wife into bed”

“Just don’t get me pregnant!” she said with a laugh.

He patted her belly and laughed with her and said

“Too late for that!” and carried her carefully into the room where they made love that rivaled even the dirtiest of romance novels. Their bodies molded perfectly to each other, and with each thrust, each like, each touch, their bodies responded to one another, and they remained joined for much of the night.

With all their energy spent, the two lay in bed, his arm around her much like the nights before, and he kissed her temple and said

“I love you Kagome. And I love you little Sofia or Kyo” he said leaning down to give her still flat tummy a small kiss.

Kagome laughed. As her husband cuddled up next to her she wondered how the heck she got so lucky. On the way, she had a child she would love and cherish forever and her husband by her side to share in that love. This was more than any Christmas present could ever own up to.
FOR LEXAII: The Perfect Present by ED Staff

“...and then she ran away from both of us,” InuYasha mumbled, embarrassment and shame tinting his cheeks cherry red. The eighteen-year-old sighed into his hands, exhausted and feeling more like eight-years-old sitting where he was with his figurative tail between his legs as he and his two best friends brainstormed ways to fix yet another messed up situation he (and his mouth!) got himself into.

To his chagrin, Sango burst out laughing. Miroku at least was considerate enough to conceal his chuckles in a cough, but Sango went so far as to point at him and choke out between giggles, “You're hopeless, InuYasha!”

Keh.

As if he needed her to tell him that! The hanyou glared at her, hoping his murderous gaze would halt the shaking of her shoulders, but Sango mercilessly laughed until her face turned blue...

...and then she laughed some more.

InuYasha growled, his fist coming down hard enough on the table in front of him to make the varnished wood splinter. “Damn it, Sango! I don't need this! I need help.”

Too used to his temper, Sango didn't even flinch. She sobered up, her face still red as she raised a thin eyebrow at him. `Too easy,' she thought, a slow grin spreading on her lips. Grunting, InuYasha stood to leave.

“You know what? Forget it,” he muttered, annoyed. Miroku, always the peacemaker of their trio, urged him to sit back down.

“Wait, Inuyasha! We're sorry. We'll help!”

InuYasha refused to show any sign of gratitude or relief, but it was obvious in the way he sat back down, too swiftly for someone hell-bent on getting away from the two, that he desperately needed their advice.

“Keh,” was all InuYasha said. His cheeks flushed an even brighter red, but the cold winter air wasn't the cause of his ruddy coloring.

A girl was, but InuYasha would never, ever say so. In fact, when Miroku gave him his signature knowing look, InuYasha tried desperately to deny it.

“I know what you're thinking, Monk,” InuYasha mumbled, avoiding eye-contact with his friends. “But I 'aint doing this because I like her or anything like that...”

“Mmhmm,” Sango hummed.

“She's just a friend!”

“We believe you.”

“I just didn't like that mangy wolf trying to 1-UP me up in front of her today!”

“Understandable,” Miroku agreed, the sarcasm subtle in his tone. InuYasha missed it, babbling on.

“Again, n-not because I like her. I mean, what's there to like about that annoying wen—?”

“You said that already, now shut up,” Sango said sternly.
Next to her, Miroku nodded sagely. “Talk like that is what got you here in the first place,” he reminded.

“But I know exactly how to help you out of this one,” Sango grinned, her brown eyes sparkling with the semi-mischievous, mostly evil glint that meant trouble for whomever she set her sights on. Miroku knew that look in her eye well—because usually, she reserved that look for him—so, eager to see what she had up her sleeve (and what someone else being her victim would look like) he let the beautiful, athletic girl take charge of the situation.

InuYasha eyed her, half-suspicious and half-afraid of whatever she had planned.

When she stood up and pointed one long, dagger of a fingernail at him, close enough to poke an eye out, InuYasha gulped, one-hundred-percent afraid now—though he'd never admit it!—of his demented friend.

“Meet me by the front entrance after school.”

InuYasha gulped.

OoOoOoO

`Damn that mangy wolf Kouga for starting this mess!'

Earlier that day, the trio InuYasha sat with at lunch had been a foursome, but their fourth stormed off angry and in tears after the slick wolf-youkai came over to their table to instigate an argument with InuYasha, which, as arguments between them usually did, snowballed into an all out brawl in the snow-covered front lawn of Shikon High School.

It happened over a Christmas present.

“I can't wait to show you what I got you,” Kouga boasted, his arm curling around Kagome Higurashi's shoulders as he forced the poor girl into an intimate hug. Though the pretty seventeen-year-old stressed way too many times that she only saw him as a friend, Kouga never took the hint or wasted any opportunity to put the moves on her. InuYasha growled and Kouga grinned, winking at the flushed, and clearly uncomfortable girl. “Only the best for my woman.”

“Stupid wolf!” InuYasha muttered. Kagome shot him a quick, exasperated look before turning her distressed baby blues on Kouga.

“Um, thanks Kouga, but,” she gently began, laying a hand on his forearm and discreetly trying to pry the limb off of her. “You really didn't have to get me anyt—”

“Of course I did!” Kouga cut her off smoothly. With a quick, sly look at InuYasha he added casually: “Your favorite color is green, right?”

She looked pleasantly surprised when she nodded.

“Yeah. How'd you know?”

“I pay attention, babe.”

“Ugh, please,” InuYasha snorted loudly, interrupting their moment. “You two make me sick.”

“InuYasha!” Kagome scolded, sounding hurt. He turned away from her with an irritated “keh.”

“Where the hell did Miroku and Sango go? I can't stand being around this anymore, disgusting flirts.”

Kouga shrugged. “You can leave,” he taunted, moving his arm from around Kagome's shoulders to her waist. Fists balling at his sides, InuYasha went to do just that.

“Wait!” Kouga shouted at his back, sounding cocky and delighted. “I forgot to ask ya mutt: what did YOU get Kagome for Christmas?”

“Wha—”

The hanyou spun back around, his eyes comically wide. Kouga casually examined his own claws.

“It's this Sunday, you know.”

“I know that!” InuYasha shouted. He shot a nervous glance at Kagome who, for some reason, was looking at him funny. Her expression was some strange, barely readable mixture of hope and sadness, with a little affectionate tossed in there, and after a while, he couldn't stand to see that anymore...

So he turned his attention on Kouga, lavishing him with everything from insults to hard knocks to the skull for putting him in such an awkward and embarrassing position over a stupid Christmas present for a stupid girl who—

—truth be told, InuYasha liked. A lot. Kagome Higurashi had been the most recent addition to his small circle of friends but the raven-haired teen blended in perfectly. Always available whenever he needed tutoring, always extending a helping hand without him ever having to ask—because his own pride and stubbornness always prevented his asking—she managed to worm her way into her own little place in his heart...

...not that she knew, and InuYasha would never, EVER let her know that.

“Mutt,” Kouga grimaced, trying to wriggle out of the headlock InuYasha caught him in. By now, half the school stood around them, cheering the two wrestling boys on and drowning out Kagome's cries for them to stop. “I bet you didn't get her anything.”

An uppercut to InuYasha's chin dislodged the arms around his neck and faster than anyone could blink, Kouga switched positions with the hanyou.

“D-did too!” he growled out, swiftly bringing up his knee.

“Stop it you two!” Kagome shouted, running towards them them. She got dangerously close to being hit when Kouga swept his foot out to kick InuYasha, so with one last swing at Kouga, the hanyou jumped away from the fight.

Standing between the two boys, a red-faced and teary-eyed Kagome stomped her foot.

“Look, I don't care about any stupid presents either of you did or didn't get me! Christmas isn't even about that!”

That being said, she stormed off, leaving InuYasha shamefaced and Kouga...still grinning?

“That'll change once she sees what I bought her,” the wolf said confidently. InuYasha couldn't help himself. He and Kouga turned everything into a competition, and this would be no different:

“Keh, fat chance she'll even care about your gift once she sees what I got her.”

OoOoOoO

`There's just one problem,' he thought, mid-explaining what caused the fight to Miroku and Sango once they returned from wherever they'd run off to.

`I didn't get her anything yet!'

OoOoOoO

“Hey, Miroku?” Kagome asked timidly. Hours later, once school let up for the day, the two walked companionably towards the gated front entrance to the building.

“Hmm?”

“What's InuYasha doing with Sango?”

She tried not to sound jealous or even interested in what her hanyou best friend was doing—after all, she wasn't speaking to him—but her voice gave it all away. She, InuYasha, Miroku, and Sango always hung out together, but rarely did InuYasha spend much time alone with Sango, or Miroku with Kagome. If their group broke up into twosomes, usually the girls and guys stuck together or Miroku went off with Sango and left InuYasha with Kagome.

“...not that I care about what that jerk decides to do from now on,” Kagome added quickly, catching the amused look in Miroku's eye, but her gaze narrowed when she saw Sango loop her arm around InuYasha's, giving away how much Kagome DID care. Though she half-considered following the two to see what they were up to, her nose wrinkled at the thought. She determined not to care for real this time.

`Starting now!' she thought huffily, folding her arms across her chest and looking away from them.

Miroku shrugged. “No idea,” he lied. Truthfully, he felt a little bitter and jealous himself seeing Sango with the hanyou. Wherever they were going, Miroku wasn't allowed to come with because Sango knew Kagome would find all of them hanging out without her too suspicious. Good point, but the teen wasn't too crazy about the idea of them going off alone. He knew how enticing his goddess of a prospective girlfriend—and her butt—was, and though InuYasha was oblivious to pretty much all things female and alluring...

`You never know,' Miroku thought wryly, before realizing Kagome was standing there, not satisfied with his answer.

“I, uh, think she said something about helping him with his history homework?” he fibbed.

“Oh,” Kagome said, sounding glum.

`I'm usually the one who helps him with that,' she thought sadly.

“Yeah...soooo,” Miroku began casually. Kagome stiffened, a familiar, creeping sensation crawling slowly down her spine—towards her butt! “Wanna help me with my homework tonight?”

“Miroku, you pervert! Get a clue!”

Kagome slapped him.

...and for some reason, it made her feel better. Grateful for her perverted, but loveable best friend, Kagome hugged him and determined not to think evil thoughts about Sango and InuYasha for the rest of the night.

`...but still,' she couldn't help thinking. 'I wonder what they're doing right about now?'

OoOoOoO

“Are you CRAZY?!”

Sango hummed to herself, skipping in front of InuYasha and occasionally leaning over display cases to get a better look at their sparkling contents.

“Nope.”

The hanyou gaped at her, watching with disbelief as she ordered a salesperson to pull a few pieces out for her to look at. She picked up a gigantic, glittering rock and held it to her ear, admiring the way it looked on her in an adjacent mirror. She had to be.

“A jewelry store is where you want me to pick out Kagome's present?” he clarified, feeling out of place in the luxurious shop she dragged him into. `THIS is her brilliant idea?'

“Yes,” Sango said innocently. She put the earring she'd been trying on down and held a long, diamond encrusted necklace up for inspection. “Haven't you seen the commercials? Diamonds are a girl's best friend! She'd love a gift from here.”

“B-but, I don't HAVE diamond-money!”

`...just two 50-yen coins and a bus pass!'*

A nearby salesman shot him a dirty look before snatching the sparkling pieces back from Sango and putting them back underneath the display case. He then rolled his eyes and distanced himself from the two obviously broke teens.

“Anyway, Kagome doesn't even like jewelry,” InuYasha added. Then his eyes narrowed suspiciously on Sango, who was smart enough to turn away and hide her grin.

“Hey, wait one damned minute—neither do you, Sango!” he accused. “'Diamonds are a girl's best friend,' my as—”

“How do you know she doesn't?” she challenged petulantly.

InuYasha thought about it for a second, envisioning Kagome in his mind. He knew Sango didn't like it because she was a tomboy and jewelery was too much of a burden to wear while playing any of the numerous sports she enjoyed. Kagome, however, looked and acted very much like a girl, but unlike other girls at their school who broke dress code with gaudy chains and too many earrings, Kagome kept her attire simple both in school and out of it.

“I just do!” InuYasha protested. Kouga's words came back to him and he grimaced:

“I pay attention, babe.”

Yeah, well, he did too!

“She doesn't need this shiny crap, anyway,” InuYasha started before catching a glimpse of Sango's weird, awestruck and pleased-as-punch expression. Clapping her hands as if her work there was done—though InuYasha didn't see how it could be; He still hadn't bought Kagome's present—she dragged the confused hanyou out of the jewelry store.

“InuYasha, tell her that!” Sango said before they parted ways. She clapped him on the shoulder. “She'll love it!”

“Love what? Was it something I said? I don't see how you just helped me with anything!” InuYasha shouted after her.

“Wait—you don't?!”

Sango threw her hands up in the air with an exasperated sigh.

“Then I can't help you!” she tossed back, her head shaking.

`The jerk doesn't get it...and I wonder if he ever will.'

OoOoOoO

“Monk!”

The next day, bright and early, InuYasha popped up at Miroku's house with a frightening look of determination on his face and more than just chump change in his pocket.

“Sango was useless yesterday,” the hanyou hastily explained, dragging the half-dressed, half-awake boy outside into the frigid, wintery air. “And I don't expect you to be much better, but I have until tomorrow to get this present, so let's go!”

Miroku smirked.

“Yash, I know the perfect place to go for this, but please...let me put some pants on first!”

“Grrr...hurry up!!”

OoOoOoO

“ Ooh, monk, you are dead!

Fortunately for Miroku, InuYasha needed to catch him in order to kill him, so he shrugged off the threat, dashing into the store where he knew he'd be safe from the angry hanyou's claws. Outside, a blushy InuYasha shouted insults at Miroku.

“You can't stay in there forever, pervert! Come out, coward, and face me like a man!”

Miroku sniggered, darting behind a table displaying dozens of brightly colored bras.


`On the contrary, I think I can stay in here forever. Gotta love Victoria's Secret!'

“Bastard!” InuYasha growled from outside. His best friend rolled his eyes, exasperated.

“Quit being a baby, Yash, and get in here. They sell more than just lingerie,” Miroku pointed out, gesturing towards a whole beauty section in the back.

...only once InuYasha gave in and entered the store, Miroku dragged him to see everything but beauty products.

“What about this?” he asked, holding up a lacy green bra and thong set. “Green is her favorite color, right? She'll love it!”

“M-monk!” InuYasha choked out, backing away from him. “Put that back down!”

Waggling his brows, Miroku ignored InuYasha's protests and tossed the thong at an him. “Yeah, she'll love it,” he repeated, sounding pleased with himself. “Maybe we'll get her a nice sheer nightgown to go with it...and one in pink for Sango.”

“L-like hell,” InuYasha stammered, flicking the offending undergarment off of himself. Wrinkling his nose at all that the store had to offer, InuYasha added, sounding childish: “I don't see the point of stuff like this. It all looks uncomfortable and frilly and stupid.”

Miroku's mouth dropped open. “Are you serious?” he asked, almost insulted. For lechers everywhere he felt the need to defend Vicky's good name. “The point is that it's sexy, and it makes women look sexy.”

Making a spectacle of himself inside the store, Miroku flailed his arms wildly when he cried dramatically: “Don't you want Kagome to look sexy?”

“KEH. She already is!” InuYasha blurted out before he could stop himself. His hands clapped over his mouth as the hanyou turned a disturbingly dark shade of red. Miroku once again looked stunned.

“You think she's...sexy?”

“Wha—NO!” InuYasha amended, shifting uncomfortably. “She just doesn't need to dress up in all these weird, frilly outfits to look nice...and she definitely doesn't need those stupid beauty products you pointed out that smell like cheap flowers and old lady perfume, so come one monk, we're getting out of here!”

“Okay...but InuYasha?”

“What?” the teen growled, pushing Miroku out of the store.

“What you just told me about Kagome not needing any of this stuff to look nice—maybe you should tell her that.”

“Sango told me the same thing,” InuYasha snorted. “What's wrong with you two! You're both weird.”

Miroku sighed.

“You can't be helped. Hey—wait!”

He shrugged InuYasha's hand off of his shoulder and ran up to the window of some costume store they passed on their way out of the mall. Inuyasha was more than confused when he caught him eyeballing a strange, black latex suit adorned with pink armor.

“Sango would look great in that,” Miroku grinned, his eyes glazing over. “I should buy it for her so she can wear it for me.”

“—and you guys say I'm the hopeless one? Quit fantasizing about her in that suit, pervert!”

“I wasn't!”

“I know you. You were.”

“Really, I wasn't,” Miroku sniggered as InuYasha directed him away from the costume store, spluttering insults. “Honestly. I was picturing her in that cool-looking armor.”

“Oh. Well that's a first.”

“...just the armor.”

“ARGH!”

OoOoOoO

So again, InuYasha went home empty handed, the monk being of no help. The next day was Christmas day and with it came falling snow and a very smug text message from Kouga about his plans to drop his present off at Kagome's house later on that day. InuYasha still had nothing to give her and it upset him more than he'd willingly admit, even to himself. For the first time in years he had a reason to celebrate the silly Western holiday. More importantly, he had someone he wanted to celebrate it with. His best friend was incredible, just as spitfire as she was sweet, gentle, and loving, and though InuYasha cared a lot about her, he and the way he acted sometimes only pushed her away from him. She already said she never wanted to speak to him, so did it matter then that he had no Christmas present to show for this year?

Truth be told, he didn't think getting her anything was that big of a deal until Kouga came along, bragging about his gift. The sad, hopeful, affectionate look she gave him when Kouga asked him what he bought her made him feel the absolute pits when he realized he hadn't even thought about getting her a present. Kouga, who she barely gave the time of day to, got her something as a token of his appreciation while InuYasha, who appreciated her more than she'd ever know, had absolutely nothing to give her.

`She hates me anyway,' he remembered, saddening as he recalled her words after the fight at school. 'Maybe I should just—'

“Give it up, kid,” someone next to him encouraged. InuYasha jumped, failing to notice the—`What the hell IS that???'—sitting next to him on a park bench outside. Covered from head to toe in bandages with nothing but a dingy coat to shield the man/thing/creature from the cold, whatever spoke to him took a drag from the cigarette it held before opining in a scratchy, harsh voice: “Whoever she is, she's not worth it.”

InuYasha bristled. “What the hell do you know,” he muttered, scooting away from the creep.

It laughed. “I know that you look stupid sitting out here in the cold with that dumb, lovesick look on your face.”

“I do NOT!”

“You do. I also know that women, they're no good.” Leaning toward InuYasha, the bandaged stranger whispered conspiratorially: “Wanna know why I look like this?”

“Not really,” InuYasha grimaced. Through the threadbare bandages he caught a glimpse of mangled, pink skin, charred completely black in some places.

“A woman did this to me!” it told him anyway. “This crazy, good-for-nothing, hell-bitch of a woman named Kikyou—”

“Hey, that's nice and all, but my Kagome is nothing like this Kikyou woman!” InuYasha snapped. He stood up, fists curling at his sides. “She's nice, and pretty, and compassionate, and—”

“Why are you telling me this?” it asked, sounding bored all of a sudden. “All I wanted to do was complain, but if you don't share my opinion—”

InuYasha wasn't listening. Stunned by the force of his epiphany, his mind reeled through conversations he should have paid more attention to:

“Talk like that is what got you here in the first place.”

“You think she's...sexy?”

“Why are you telling ME this?”“

“I don't care about any stupid presents!

“Maybe you should tell her...”

“...Christmas isn't even about that!”

“ Tell her that!”

Damn it! It made sense now!

Words got him into this mess, and they might get him out of it.

`I'm an idiot,' he realized. The last few days he'd been telling everyone how Kagome didn't want or need much to be happy or look beautiful. She was simple and sweet and...

...he should be telling her that! After all, the holiday was a time to spend times with—InuYasha gulped at the realization—loved ones.

With newfound courage, InuYasha rose from his seat and ran in the direction of her shrine home, leaving the crazy burnt guy shouting after him.

“Hey, were you even listening to me?!”




It rolled it's eyes. “Merry Christmas to you, too.”

OoOoOoO

Back at the shrine, Kagome tried to act pleased with her present, but the ginormous slime-green teddy bear had to be the ugliest thing she'd ever seen.

“T-thanks, Kouga, I love it!” she lied. Kouga (and his ego) were too busy patting himself on the back to notice that her smile was a forced one. As she disappeared inside her house to put the present somewhere where her fat cat, Buoyo, might find (and destroy) it, Kagome felt horrible for finding his gift horrible. Wasn't the thought supposed to count somehow? Truthfully, it was sweet of Kouga to think of her—AND apologize as profusely as he did for upsetting her at school the other day—but Kagome couldn't help her disappointment, especially when, for the millionth time, he followed up his cheesy presentation of her gift by asking her out on a date.

How many times did she have to reject the poor guy for him to get it through his head??? She wasn't interested!

...and where was InuYasha.? Further fueling her disappointment was the fact that he hadn't shown up. In fact, she hadn't seen him since the fight at school and wondered worriedly if he took her harsh words seriously.

`Oh my God! I'm such an idiot!'

When Kouga texted her that morning with his plans to show up at the shrine, she hoped it meant InuYasha would turn up too, even if it meant another brawl between the two. She missed her best friend desperately and wanted nothing more than to spend Christmas with the crass, but loveable hanyou.

“Maybe I should call him and apologi—”

“Mutt!” she heard Kouga yell outside. She froze in place, her heart pounding out an erratic rhythm as she wondered if InuYasha had actually shown up. Kouga only used that moniker on one person, but she didn't want to walk out and experience disappointment if, by some chance, her hanyou wasn't there. “Didn't think you'd actually show your ugly face here, and I see you're empty-handed, too. How lousy! My woman deserves better.”

“Piss off, Kouga.”

Kagome's breath caught before, wildly happy, she lost her mind and went sprinting outside in just her pajamas and bunny slippers.

“InuYasha?!”

She flew at him, not caring that the temperature outside dipped below zero, or that her bunny-slippers didn't properly warm or protect her feet from the cold. When he caught her easily, she finally knew it wasn't a dream, though it very much felt just as magical. She buried her face in his warm, red jacket and tried to stave off tears.

`I can't believe it. I wanted you to show up and you did!' She gazed up at him adoringly, enamored by the fangy grin he wore just for her and thinking that three days of not speaking to him felt like a lifetime.

“Damn, Kagome,” Kouga snorted from somewhere behind them. For a moment, both InuYasha and Kagome forget he was there. “He's your best friend and he didn't get you a present? What a wimp. From now on, why don't you sit with me at my ta—?”

“Shut up, wolf,” InuYasha said dismissively, keeping his gaze focused on the girl in his arms. Her greeting was better than anything he could ever have hoped for and he silently hoped Sango, Miroku, and the crazy thing/man/creature from the park could feel how grateful he was for their advice...even though the latter didn't mean to spark his epiphany. Focusing bright gold on his beautiful best friend, who looked angelic and perfect in the snow-covered setting, flakes glittering like tiny jewels in her hair, InuYasha wondered what he should say and where he should start.

Kouga pouted, knowing that the battle was lost and accepting his defeat.

And after a long moment, while InuYasha organized his thoughts...

“Hey,” the hanyou whispered softly. He decided that there was as good a place to start as any.

Kagome giggled, wiping the moisture from her eyes. She knew better than to expect poetry from him, but he seemed prepared to say something!

“Hey,” she shot back. “What are you doing here? I didn't think you'd—”

“I missed you,” InuYasha cut her off. Kagome's mouth fell open in shock and while nerves and fear threatened to overwhelm InuYasha, he refused to stop talking until he got everything he wanted to say out. He rarely, if ever, used his words for good, but today—with Kagome—seemed the perfect time to start.

“Two days of not speaking to you were hell. I missed you laughing with me, arguing with me, tutoring me—which, by the way, I probably failed that last history assignment because of yo—”

“ I thought Sango helped you out with that!” Kagome cried, confused. “Miroku said—”

“ Our friends are useless,” InuYasha shook his head. “But that's a story for another day. These two days before Christmas, I went crazy trying to find you the perfect gift. Sango took me to a jewelry store where everything was too expensive, Miroku took me to—you don't even want to know where,” he blushed, willing the embarrassing memory out of existence. “And then I met some deranged man-thing in the park who helped me realize that...you were right. Christmas isn't about presents or 1-Upping that idiot Kouga. None of that is important. You are.”

“I-InuYasha?”

“ So, I didn't get you anything yet, but I came here to—well, to tell you that—and,” InuYasha shyly ran a hand over his head, “t-to ask if maybe, possibly, you'dwannaspendChristmaswithme?”

He blurted the last part out in one long, jumbled, nervously spoken mess.

`Crap! And I was doing so well!'

Kagome laughed again, enveloping InuYasha in a warm, tight hug. The wintry air didn't faze her. She felt alive and on fire in his arms.

“Come again?” she teased, though she understood him the first time.


InuYasha took a deep breath. “Would you want to spend Christmas with me?” he repeated, blushing. “I-I mean,” he stammered when she didn't answer right away, “if you still want a real present I'll buy you one, but I thought maybe we could—Ka-Kagome? Why are you looking at me like...let go of my...Mmmph!

Grabbing a fistful of his red wool jacket, Kagome threw herself at him, sending the two of them flying backwards into a bank of snow. Only then, when he was sufficiently caught off guard, did she press her lips to his in a sweet, loving kiss.

“Oh, InuYasha,” Kagome sniffled when they pulled apart for air. “Of course I want to spend Christmas with you. This is the best Christmas gift you could have given me ever!”

“B-but, I told you. I didn't get you an actual present. If you still want me to, the mall closes early today, but I THINK we can still—”


“Idiot,” she giggled, laying her head on his chest and hearing his heartbeat through his many layers of clothing. “You don't get it, do you?”

InuYasha's brows knit in confusion. “Everyone keeps telling me that, but I don't get what I'm missing! I finally told you how I felt and—”



“Just shut up and kiss me.”

End Notes:
* 100-yen = approx. $1.63.
Also, I don't share InuYasha's opinion about Victoria Secret's beauty section and how it smells. Dream Angels perfume = heavenly :P
This story archived at http://ik-eternal.net/viewstory.php?sid=1715