Kagome was restless with nervous excitement as she sat on the gurney, biting her lip and clutching a hand in both of hers for dear life, reluctant to relinquish her hold. Nurses decked in scrubs scurried back and forth as they prepared the OR room for the next patient, a one Kagome Higurashi. She had been waiting for this day for months, and now that it was finally here, the young woman was scared as ever.
Tender fingers brushed back her bangs from her face and soft lips brushed against her forehead; immediately Kagome relaxed and closed her eyes, a loving smile curling her lips. "S'okay," a deep voice rumbled affectionately, causing the rest of her frazzled nerves to disappear.
"I'm glad you're here." Warm chocolate orbs gazed up at the boy in front of her and eyes the color of the midnight sky smiled back at her.
"Always, baby," Inuyasha replied and gathered her close, unable to gaze into her eyes for much longer. "I'll always be here with you." He swallowed thickly and buried his nose in her hair, inhaling her sweet scent, fighting back the tears that threatened to fall. His time with her was almost up; the doctor performing her operation had donned scrubs and was briefing her family on the procedure. His arms tightened around her; he didn't want to let her go. But it was necessary if she were to continue living.
"Alright, Miss Higurashi, we're all ready for you. Are you ready?"
The couple pulled back and glanced at the doctor, whom was grinning confidently and holding Kagome's folder in his hand. Sucking in a sharp breath, Inuyasha looked back down at his girlfriend again and fought to hold back his emotions for her sake. He didn't want to answer any unnecessary questions.
Kagome, too nervous and excited to notice her boyfriend's strange behavior, beamed brightly at her physician then turned wide eyes to the boy before her. Her smile softened and she reached up to touch his cheek. "I love you. See you in a few hours?"
His chest constricted and his breath hitched, though Inuyasha managed a wan smile for his girlfriend's benefit and leaned down to kiss her lips one last time. "I love you," he whispered vehemently, lingering for as long as he could before forcing himself to pull back and let the nurses take the love of his life away behind heavy swinging doors. The doctor followed.
Violet eyes turned blank, his body slumped as he stared at the double doors marked OR.
A delicate hand landed on his shoulder and Inuyasha slowly turned his head to stare into the warm, knowing eyes of Kagome's mother. She offered a watery smile, one he couldn't return, and allowed her to take his hand and lead him away through a different set of doors.
Seven hours later...
Heavy eyelids fluttered open to reveal hazy cinnamon orbs, her vision blurry and she blinked a few time to clear it. Realization slowly dawned and a small, tired smile curled her lips upward. She'd made it. She was alive.
"Inu..." she rasped and suddenly her hand was enveloped in warmth. Soft, small hands; not that of her boyfriend's. "Mom...?"
"I'm here, sweetie."
Kagome sighed softly and turned her head wearily to the side to spy her mother smiling gently at her and she wondered at the tears in her eyes. A small frown marred her pale features once she realized her love was nowhere to be seen. "Mama...where's Inuyasha?" Taking a deep breath, Kagome slowly sat up and swung her legs over the bed, ignoring her mother's weak protests as she scooted forward to hold onto the older woman's shoulders.
The tears ran unchecked down her mother's cheeks and Kagome's new heart thudded heavily in her chest. Her hand tightened around the older woman's and she swallowed the sudden lump in her throat. "M-mom...?"
Wordlessly, Mrs. Higurashi slipped a folded piece of paper into her hand, sat up to kiss her daughter's forehead, then exited the room, pressing the back of her hand against her mouth as she closed the door. My poor Kagome...I'm so sorry. She slid down the door to the floor and cried.
Confused, worried, and frightened, Kagome stared at the white square of paper in her hand, trepidation making her hands shake as she slowly unfolded it, suddenly scared to read its contents.
A second later the most heart wrenching scream could be heard echoing throughout the halls of the hospital, sobs of denial following afterward as several nurses and doctors dropped what they were doing to hastily check on the hysterical patient.
And a single girl felt her newly transplanted heart break into a thousand tiny pieces as she crumpled to the floor, a piece of paper clutched tightly in her hand.
You've always had it, and now it's yours to keep for as long as you live.
I love you with all of our heart,