InuYasha Fan Fiction ❯ Chapter 3 ( Chapter 3 )

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Chapter 3: Chapter 3

Universe: Inuyasha

Pairing: SessKag (VERY OOC. It’s AU though, and I doubt
Sesshoumaru would be such a homicidal freak in present-day Japan. I
think.)

Genre: AU, Romance, Slice of Life.

Disclaimer: Inuyasha and its characters do not belong to me
(sadly).

Author Notes: Hey Guys, I’m so so sorry for the wait! Ange,
reporting for fic duty. Back by popular demand, here’s chapter
three of my silly fic. As a bonus, its +1K longer than my previous
chapters, since I made you all wait so much. Again, sorry for the
delay, I haven’t had much of a chance to write what with recent
projects that I’m juggling. Plus, I had a few issues with fitting
some characters into certain plot points, since this wasn’t really
meant to go anywhere except just a short little drabble in my head
:’)

Special shoutout to « stictches17″ for
commenting on every chapter. You’re a sweetie. And a virtual hug to
everybody who has commented so far! Comments give me life and let
me know if you guys like the story or not. So all constructive
criticism or comment are welcome!

This has been one of the most enjoyable
chapters to write thus far. I hope its just as much fun to read,
too. As always, please R&R, I love hearing your thoughts! Here
it is, enjoy.

And They Call It Puppy Love

Chapter Three

888

« You want safe?
Find a nice puppy you can train to come heel.
Love’s supposed to be scary.
Because if there’s no fear,
there’s no thrill. »

Nora Roberts

888

« You’re here! » Rin shouted, disentangling
herself from Kagome’s embrace and running towards the imposing
figure of Sesshoumaru.

Kagome wanted to find the nearest hole and
crawl into it.

How much of that incredibly uncomfortable
conversation had the white-haired man heard? How long had he been
quietly standing there listening to his retainer being rudely
questioned by his nosy neighbor, to the point of (unintentional)
tears? And what horrible thoughts would he harbor of Kagome’s
not-so-subtle manipulation of the only living thing that seemed to
matter to him besides his two dogs and his ailing wife?

Forget the hole, Kagome wanted to find a
fricking volcano and jump in it.

For his part, Sesshoumaru’s expression remained
impassive as the little girl relayed her magical evening with her
new BFF. He didn’t seem particularly interested in the story, his
face revealing neither boredom, concern, amusement or any sort of
effusive emotion. But he did listen attentively to the girl’s
incessant rambling, and that had to count for something. When Rin
paused for breath, Sesshoumaru raised one elegant finger. Rin
immediately shut up, as if her batteries had been yanked
out. 
Neat trick.

« Did you behave, child? » he asked
gravely.

« Yup! Rin-chan was a good girl! And I had loads
of fun too! » Rin nodded, beaming.

« Hn. » He said expressively.

Before the little girl could pipe up and
continue her fascinating story about Un eating a snail during their
game of fetch, Sesshoumaru placed a hand on the girl’s head. « Take
Ah and Un back home. Jaken is, as your mother is fond of saying,
« having a fit ». »

Rin stifled a giggle behind her hands and
nodded. « Okay! » she sang and immediately sped away in direction to
her house, completely forgetting Kagome.

As soon as the girl was gone, a very
uncomfortable silence settled around the two grownups. Not even a
convenient wind blew by to rustle up the leaves as a means of
distraction. As the silence stretched on, Kagome wondered if the
man were ever going to say something. She should probably seize
this chance to escape.

Standing up and stretching theatrically, Kagome
smiled politely at the man. « Well, that was lots of fun, but I
should really get inside. Eat dinner, take a bath, get ready for
bed, you know. » Kagome babbled, slowly climbing up the steps
backwards, her eyes never leaving Sesshoumaru’s still figure, like
prey watching a predator. She was almost at the
door, 
almost –

« You will stay. »
Sesshoumaru commanded cooly.

So close!,
Kagome thought miserably. She wondered if she would look like a
complete lunatic if she made a run for it. Kagome watched Rin’s
silhouette in the distance, feeling oddly betrayed at being
abandoned so easily to an unspecified
fate. 
So much for
besties,
 Kagome thought
forlornly.

Rin finally out of sight, Kagome turned to face
her executioner.

Bright yellow eyes looked back with frightening
intensity, and Kagome had the terrifying thought that he would
strike her down with laser beams or something equally appropriate.
If Sesshoumaru had heard even half of what had been discussed
during the last five minutes alone, then she was screwed. Sure,
Sesshoumaru 
probably wouldn’t
kill her for pulling information from his little girl like an
amateur FBI interrogator. But putting herself in his shoes, she was
definitely in for 
something. It was the
undetermined nature of that 
something that had
Kagome shaking in her sneakers.

Kagome attempted to look as innocent and
upstanding as possible, a difficult task when she was sweating
bullets. « Um, » she nervously started.

Sesshoumaru’s eyes narrowed, a scowl tugging
the corners of his lips down. Good gravy, for a man with as many
facial expressions as Kagome could count in one hand, he sure put
them to 
excellent use. He
was glaring at her with that indecipherable look again, except
instead of making her toes curl, it was making her heart flip-flop
in what surely was an impersonation of a heart attack.

When Sesshoumaru began to walk toward her,
Kagome abandoned her fears of looking crazy and nearly ran bolt for
the door.

Anybody looking at the scene from the outside
would think it very normal, placid even. A man walking slowly
towards his neighbor’s door. No biggie. Inside her heard though,
Kagome was cursing up a storm and shrieking at the top of her
mental lungs. Sesshoumaru looked 
pissed,at her, and God only
knew what he was going to do about it. It was already dark, and no
neighbors were around, just them and his bright yellow eyes
and-

God, why did he have to be so gorgeous even
when he was scaring her shitless?!

« Um! » Kagome tried again
desperately.

Sesshoumaru stopped mere inches away from
Kagome, who was trying to lower her blood pressure with sheer will
alone. Quietly he studied her, head tilted slightly to the side as
he seemed to ponder something. Probably the best way to hurt her
without leaving evidence…

Suddenly, he spoke. « When can we
start? »

Start what? The torture
session? 
How about
never?

« Come again? »

« When may we begin, woman? » he said huffily,
annoyed at having to repeat himself.

Kagome licked her lips nervously. « Can you
elaborate, please? »

Sesshoumaru sighed at her. « You are free all
days after 3’o’clock? » he asked, raising one skeptical
eyebrow.

« Yes. Everyday. » Kagome replied, still lost
where this was going. Nerves made her mouth move in speech, a
terrible habit which resulted in babbling like an idiot. She heard
the words come out in a horrified trance. « It’s not like I have
anything to do when I get home besides play with Ah and Un, and
cook dinner. Maybe watch some Netflix. No chill, though. You know,
like « Netflix and chill. » Just…no ‘chill’. Not that you
care… » Please, for the love of God, someone stop
her.

Way to sound like a pathetic loser,
Higurashi.

« Are you sure there would be no problem in the
future with any prospective suitor regarding schedule? » Sesshoumaru
pressed.

Kagome was once more thrown for a loop.
« What? »

« You say otherwise, but a woman your age surely
has her days reserved for …courtship. » His voice held no
inflection. It was almost 
too nonchalant.

…Wait.

Was this his roundabout way of asking if she
was 
dating?

How quaint.

Kagome crossed her arms defensively, blushing.
« I assure you, my schedule is pretty flexible at this time.
By 
choice. » She emphasized.

Pleased with that answer, Sesshoumaru nodded as
if deciding something. « I see. »

There was a long span of silence. Kagome could
hear her heart thudding in her ear drums.

Then more silence.

And even more silence.

Served with a side of silence.

Kagome was about to wave a hand in front of
Sesshoumaru, thinking he had fallen asleep with his eyes open, when
he blinked.

« It is decided. » He said abruptly. « You shall
be Rin’s tutor then. »

Kagome nearly swallowed her tongue.

« Excuse
me?
 » she said, not even hiding her
bewilderment.

« You offer tutoring lessons? »

Oh, she did say that, hadn’t
she? « Umm, yes, sometimes but I-« 

« Rin’s grades have been slipping, due to the
circumstances to which you are now privy. » He frowned, as if her
knowledge of their family affairs offended him. « I have tried to
tutor her myself in the past, but Rin finds my technique
rather-« 

Terrifying?

« -lacking. » He finished, scowling. « I have yet
to find a way to make her grasp certain subjects, and I am at a
loss as to what to do. » He sighed with obviously restrained
frustration.

« And what makes you think I’ll have better
luck? » Kagome argued.

« For reasons beyond my comprehension, Rin seems
to hold you in high esteem. »

« Thanks? »

« Plus, you are a certified educator who has
admitted to having a rather free social calendar. »

Trapped myself into that one, didn’t
I?,
 Kagome mentally slapped
herself.

« This Sesshoumaru is willing to pay, of
course. » He added, as if money was no consequence.

Well, Kagome could always use the extra cash.
God knows a teacher’s salary didn’t get her all the things she
wanted, even if she loved her job. But to tutor Rin would mean to
expose herself more to the metaphorical thorn in her heart-
er, 
side. Sesshoumaru seemed to sense her uncertainty.

« Are you against providing your services
outside of a school setting? »

« No… » Kagome said carefully. « I’m just
not sure if I’ll be any help-« 

« Do you dislike Rin? »

« What?! No, how could you even insinuate
that-? »

« Then the problem must lie with me. »
Sesshoumaru observed intuitively, yellow eyes boring into
hers-

« Look, just shoot me with your laser eyes
already and be done with it! » Kagome blurted.

« Pardon? »

« Eh… » Kagome fumbled, not realizing she
had actually said that last part out loud. Sesshoumaru’s puzzled
expression made her blush fifty shades darker. « I didn’t mean that.
Just… » Just what, though? He had hit the bullseye. Kagome
adored Rin and she wasn’t against giving tutoring lessons to the
little girl. But being involved with Rin meant constant interaction
with the man, Sesshoumaru Taisho, whose familial status to the
little speck of Sunshine known as Rin was still unknown to her.
Kagome frowned at herself. This was ridiculous. Her whole life had
to be dictated on whether or not her actions led her to any sort of
involvement with one measly man? And once again, just because she
was with the girl didn’t mean that she would be directly involved
with Sesshoumaru. She was a grown-up for God’s sake, she could keep
things platonic or, at the very least, professional. Plus it would
be innocent, right? He wouldn’t do
anything 
indecent to
her, he was married after all.

And married men never cheated on their sick
wives before, right?,
 a little
voice whispered maliciously in Kagome’s head.

You still don’t know if he’s really
married!,
 Kagome whispered back
fruitlessly, once again noting the missing wedding band on the
man’s hand.

Sesshoumaru was looking at her with an
expectant look, impatiently waiting for Kagome’s answer.

« You promised Rin. » He said at last, implying
the sacredness of vows, even those made to children. Kagome had
promised, though, hadn’t she? She had told Rin that she would help
her in any way she could. Kagome had the distinct impression that
Sesshoumaru was willing to hold her prisoner to her own
words.

Kagome would have to be insane to do this. But
then again, she had never been a big believer in keeping it
safe.

The raven sighed and brushed a tired hand over
her face. « Okay. I can do 
one free trial
lesson to assess what exactly are Rin’s problem areas in class, and
then see where she should go from there or if tutoring is really
necessary. I’ll do my best to help her. » Kagome assured him,
leveling gazes with the man. 
I
keep my promises
, were the words
beneath the words.

Sesshoumaru raised his chin imperiously,
pleased, as if the thought of being refused had not even crossed
his mind.

« That sounds rather sensible. » He said
simply.

Kagome sighed, releasing a breath she hadn’t
realized she had been holding. 
No biggie, see?

Slowly, Sesshoumaru turned around and began
walking down the porch steps. « We look forward to your tutoring
lesson tomorrow. 3’o’clock sharp, we’ll be here. »

« ‘We’? » Kagome asked
weakly, dread and excitement coiling in her belly.

Sesshoumaru sent her a look over his shoulder,
yellow eyes flashing in the starlight. « Yes. I plan to be present
during 
all of Rin’s
lessons…Higurashi
-sensei. »

Kagome’s mouth dropped open, but no sound came
out.

Sesshoumaru didn’t show it in his face, but she
could tell by the line of his shoulder’s that he seemed satisfied
with this turn of events. With a grunt that Kagome swore could’ve
been a snort, he continued walking towards his home, leaving a
gaping Kagome in his wake. The flustered woman stayed watching
after the man long after he was gone and night had settled all
around her.

All she had asked God for was peace away from
this unholy man who led her astray from the path of good. And now,
he was going to be there…all the time…in
her 
house…sitting next to
her…so 
close

Higurashi-sensei…’

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury. Allow one
Kagome Higurashi to testify.

There is no God.

888

Sango had two fists stuffed into her mouth,
attempting to stifle the fountain of giggles that threatened to
spill over. Miroku was looking at Kagome with an equally amused
expression, although he refrained from laughing out-right in her
face.

Miroku cleared his throat, covering a chortle.
« Kagome, when I said to keep away from the family, I wasn’t playing
‘Opposite Day’. Really, how do you get yourself into these
situations? » the man chided, wagging his finger at her.

« I don’t know! » Kagome groaned,
pulling her hair.

Kagome had been fretting all day at school. She
had gotten up really late, due to not being able to catch a wink of
sleep as the scene replayed over and over in her mind, which
resulted in her being tardy to work. At school, her concentration
didn’t get any better. She forgot most of her class lectures, ended
mixing up dates and names (much to the amusement of her students),
and had bumped into every unfortunate soul ignorant enough to come
even two feet close to her. When Sango caught up with her during
lunchtime, she found the pretty raven attempting to open her locker
with an eyeliner instead of her key, eyes glazed over. The curvy
Gym teacher didn’t wait for Kagome to speak, merely dragged the
raven by the arm and headed straight to the school doctor’s office
to get some privacy, much to Miroku’s delight. After much poking
and prodding from both her best friends on why she was so out of
it, Kagome spilled the beans.

She expected support. What she got was two
laughing idiots who she really wanted to strangle right about
now.

« Sango, please stop. This isn’t
funny. »

« Like hell it isn’t! That guy’s got you around
his little manicured finger. » Sango said, her eyes teary from
laughter.

As much as Kagome hated to admit it, Sango was
right. Kagome was being twisted around by this total stranger – it
was embarrassing! Maybe she really 
had gone insane. She
had to be, because despite all her protests and moral qualms about
the situation…she was still considering agreeing to tutoring
the girl full time. Even worse, she was looking forward to spending
more time with 
him. As if making a
kid get good grades ever got anyone laid.

Only if this was a really bad TV show. Or a
fanfic.

« Oh, by the way, the new Teacher Assistants
will be arriving today. » Miroku interjected her thoughts, smoothly
changing topics. « Really? » Sango said, almond eyes gleaming, and
Kagome gave an appreciative look at the older man, which he
returned with a knowing smile. He knew Sango would latch on to that
and forget about torturing Kagome. For a little while, at
least.

« Yes. They’re supposed to be arriving any
second now to fill out the paperwork. » Miroku continued, setting
down the cups of tea on the table, steam rising softly.

Sango clapped her hands together eagerly. « New
whip boys and girls we can push around to do our
bidding. 
Oh,
yeah. » 
She gushed.

« Sango, that used to be us, you know. Be nice. »
Kagome smiled, glad the conversation had shifted from
her.

« They weren’t nice to me
when 
I started in this dump. It’s called
payback. »

« I’m pretty sure that’s not how payback works. »
Miroku said pleasantly, standing up to pick up their empty paper
plates and throw them away. Kagome noted the gentle way he took
Sango’s from her hands, fingers lingering just a few seconds
longer, eyes meeting swiftly. It lasted a mere instant, but Kagome
didn’t miss it. She said nothing though, and when she saw the
slight pink flooding Sango’s cheeks as she quickly looked away, she
smiled privately. So she wasn’t the only one struck by
Cupid…

Kagome sipped a bit from her tea, then set it
down. « Well, thanks for listening. But I have to go. » She pushed
the chair back, her friends raising their eyebrows in question.
« I’m assigned to one of the new rookies so I should be heading to
the main wing to greet him. Totally forgot about it till now. »
Kagome looked at her wristwatch anxiously. « He’s probably waiting
for me. »

Sango scrunched up her nose in disgust. « Ugh, I
hope the rookie’s the 
only one waiting for
you. I hate it when you go to the Headmaster’s office. »

« Sango… »Kagome began
patiently.

« Kagome, don’t even start. He’s a
total 
creep, and you know
it
. I’ve seen the way he looks at you whenever you so
much as walk past his office.  » Sango was full-on frowning, the
loathing evident on her face. « Freaking pervert. »

« I agree with Sango, Kagome. And this coming
from me. » Miroku nodded, standing up as well. « Maybe we should
accompany you-« 

« Will you two relax? It’s broad daylight in the
main school building. Lots of people around. He wouldn’t dare do
anything there! Plus the Headmaster is just a really friendly guy,
is all. »

Sango snorted, and was about to say something
when Miroku silenced her by placing a hand on her shoulder. « Very
well, Kagome. But don’t let your guard down. » Miroku’s mouth was
one grim line. « I hate to put another man down when it comes to
these matters of wooing ladies but he… there is something off
about the way he treats you. » He frowned.  » I don’t like
it. »

« This is our school director you guys are
talking about. You act like he’s going to attack me any second
now. »

« Your naivety is outstanding. » Sango whispered,
appalled.

« I’ll take that as a compliment. » Kagome
grinned wryly at her friends, before waving goodbye and walking out
of the room. « See you later! Meet up outside after school is
out! »

« Only is you don’t get kidnapped! » Sango
shouted as Kagome rounded the corner.

Ignoring the last comment, Kagome made her way
toward the main wing of the school building, trying her best to
hurry without flat-out running. She had been so wrapped up in her
own drama, she completely forgot about her new duties as a Mentor
to the hopeful interns.

Kagome slowed her pace as she reached the small
section of offices. Smoothing her hair, she walked the narrow
hallway, passing office after office until she reached the end of
the hall, which opened up to a small yet opulent waiting room.
Exquisite abstract paintings adorned the walls, and although quite
inoffensive, Kagome always thought they looked like very vague
paintings of spider-webs. Needless to say, she wasn’t a fan, but it
wasn’t her office. She didn’t see anybody sitting on the chairs
next to the wall where visitors usually waited to meet with the
school Headmaster, and Kagome fidgeted. Had the Teacher’s Assistant
not arrived yet?

« You’re late, girl. As always. »

Kagome’s eyes swerved to the far side of the
room until they landed on the owner of the voice, and she could
feel her mood sour.

Forcing a smile, Kagome used her sweetest
voice. « I apologize. I got caught up during my lunch, but I’m here
now. » She walked towards the desk where she locked gazes with the
meanest human being she had ever met.

The woman sitting at the desk tsked, obviously
not impressed with Kagome’s apology. Even with the air conditioner
and floor-fan at full blast, the Main Secretary grabbed the
white-and-red fan that was on her desk and began fanning herself
dramatically, an annoying habit that grated on Kagome’s nerves.
« The Headmaster does not appreciate tardiness, girl. He has more
important matters to handle than to wait for a simpleton such as
yourself. » The woman pinned Kagome with eyes so black they were
almost scarlet in the light. Like the color of freshly spilled
blood. Her lips were painted a murderous red, and that malicious
mouth slowly stretched into a sneer. « If you were going to be this
late, the least you could have done was be presentable. What will
our new Teacher’s Assistant think when he sees our regular teachers
looking like absolute slobs? »

There was a reason the mean secretary had
earned her nickname. Although somedays, 
Wind-Witch didn’t do
justice to the piece of work she was.

« Look, Kagura, how about we skip the niceties
today and you just let me go in, hmm? Flattering as your remarks
are, I’m really not in the mood. »

« No one’s ever in the mood to hear the truth,
girl. » Kagura shot back. But before Kagome could respond, Kagura
leaned forward, pressing the speaker on the desk with her fan.
« Higurashi is here, Headmaster. »

« Send her in. » A crackly, deep voice
responded.

« Good luck, kiddo. Try not to embarrass
yourself. » Kagura dismissed in a bored tone, shooing her and
pointing with her fan towards the closed door next to her
desk.

Kagome narrowed her eyes at the witchy woman,
but bit her tongue. With a deep breath, Kagome squared her
shoulders and opened the door.

Two men were already inside, and both stood up
as soon as they saw her enter the room. She had said men, but the
person standing nearest her looked barely out of their freshman
year in college. Small, scrawny and with wide-eyed wonder that
rivaled even Rin’s, Kagome figured the young man must be her new
assistant. She nodded at him, and he returned the greeting
tentatively. The raven hoped that he wasn’t this timid all the
time, or the kids would eat him alive. Or maybe he was just
nervous.

Kagome opened her mouth to speak, when someone
beat her to the punch.

« Ah, Kagome-san, so glad you could finally make
it. »

Kagome gulped as she remembered who the man
sitting on the fancy desk across from her was. Plastering her most
gracious smile, Kagome turned to look at the school’s Headmaster
and Number One Creep.

« Forgive me, Headmaster Onigumo. It was not my
intention to keep you waiting. »

« I was beginning to think that you had
forgotten all about me. And please, Kagome-san, I’ve told you
before. Call me Naraku. »

Tall and imposing, Naraku Onigumo was the
school’s youngest Headmaster to date. He was beautiful, in the way
that lava was beautiful: the minute you made the mistake of coming
too close to admire it, it would be too late. Soft-spoken and
polite in a manner that was always disingenuous; Kagome thought
this was what the devil would look like as a man. Scarlet eyes,
like the depths of a volcano, bore into hers and he smiled a
predatory grin at his youngest employee.

Kagome clasped her hands behind her back to
keep them from shaking, as they always did whenever Naraku looked
at her like that. It wasn’t like he was ever outwardly offensive in
any way, but her instincts would constantly spark in his presence.
His lovely dark curls framed porcelain skin, and long spidery
fingers tapped the tabletop calculatingly.

Tilting his head thoughtfully, Naraku eyes
roamed up and down her body, giving her a not so subtle once-over.
She shuddered, his expression causing shivers to run all over her
body like a million tiny spiders. « You look lovely as always,
Kagome-san -« 

« I’m sorry, but I believe I have an appointment
with you here today? » Kagome cut him off, hands fisting behind her
back. She just needed to keep it on a professional plane, that’s
all. Gosh, she seemed to be having this problem with every man she
met lately. « Something about needing me? »

« A curious choice of words. ‘Need you’? I do,
indeed. » The man murmured deeply, and Kagome tried to ignore the
undertones behind his words, the leering look that made her stomach
lurch.

A cough broke off the uncomfortable exchange.
The young man, ignored since Kagome’s arrival, stepped forward and
stood directly in front of Kagome. The woman didn’t know if his
blocking Naraku’s view of her with his own body was intentional or
not, but she felt grateful not having to stare at those disturbing
red eyes. The youngster’s gentle green eyes were a definite
reprieve.

« I believe you are my new Mentor. A pleasure to
finally meet you. »

He really was young, probably in his early
twenty’s, his round boyish face just beginning to harden into that
of a man’s. His expression was kind, oprn, and Kagome smiled at
him, suddenly reminded of her younger brother, Souta. She instantly
felt a sisterly affection for the boy.

« Same here. You must be the new Teacher’s
Assistant! My name’s Kagome Higurashi! » Kagome replied, eager for
the interruption. She bowed quickly and held out her hand to him in
greeting, which he returned with a firm, but comforting
grip.

The young man smiled shyly, looking up at her
from behind a red fringe. He had really pretty hair, the color of
orange autumn leaves tumbling silently during Fall. They
complimented his forest-green eyes perfectly. « Nice to meet you,
Higurashi-sensei. I am Shippo Kinu. » He bowed gracefully, his red
bangs falling over his eyes. « Please take care of me. »

Kagome suppressed a giggle behind her fingers,
smiling at the boy. « ‘Silk Tail’, huh? That’s a rather pretty
name. » Kagome remarked, finding the combination darling.

Shippo blushed, but smiled back. « The same
could be said of your own name, Higurashi-sensei. » He said meekly,
and Kagome smiled wider. It didn’t come off as a come-on, and
Kagome accepted the sincere compliment for what it was. She liked
this Kinu, kid. He was sweet.

« Well, now that introductions are over with,
let us proceed. » Naraku cut in, unamused by the youngster’s
rudeness earlier. Shuffling some papers, which he handed to Kagome
(and which Kagome was careful to take while avoiding touching him),
he began explaining. « Kagome-san, for the next semester, Kinu-san
shall be assisting you during your History classes and Homeroom. He
had great recommendations from his professors, whose professional
opinion I respect, and I expect that he’ll be quite satisfactory
during the following weeks. » Naraku pinned the young man down, as
if daring him not to live up to that expectation.

« I’ll do my best. » Shippo promised, leveling
gazes with the much taller, broader man. His words were lax and
respectful, but the upward tilt of his chin told Kagome that this
kid was up to the challenge. She could tell that he didn’t like
Naraku at all, if the stubborn set of his brows was anything to go
by. 
Brave little man, aren’t
you?
 Kagome though with a hint
of pride.

« I look forward to your work here at Shikon
Elementary. At your willingness, you may stay and watch the
teacher’s today, or you may formally commence tomorrow at 8’o’clock
sharp. That been said, you are dismissed. » Naraku said, waving a
hand towards the door.

Meeting over, Kagome turned to exit with the
younger man. Kagome had almost made it to the
door…

« Kagome-san. »

A chasm of despair opened below Kagome’s feet.
She had been so close. Before he walked out of the office, she saw
the brief look of confusion flit Shippo’s face as he met her own
frustrated gaze. The raven-haired woman closed her eyes, took a
deep breath then turned back towards Naraku. « Yes, Headmaster
Onigumo? » she tried to keep her tone polite.

Naraku walked around the gigantic desk, his
movements smooth and economical. He smiled, stalking ever so slowly
towards her, and Kagome was distinctly aware that he knew she was
trapped. Finally he stopped a scarce few inches away from her, his
tall frame looming over her own small one.

« Lunchtime is almost over, and I have a bit of
paperwork I have to sort out right now…So I was
wondering… » his hand came up, brushed softly against her
shoulder, slid down her arm until it stopped just below her elbow,
pressing possessively. » …if you would like to grab a cup of
coffee with me after school. » He leaned even closer, and Kagome
could’ve sworn that he took a deep breath, sniffing her
scent.

Kagome fought the urge to shake his hand off.
This was her boss. She couldn’t react too brashly, lest she lose
her job over what could be misconstrued as a misunderstanding.
Naraku was just being a friendly employer, is all. One who made her
extremely nervous and anxious and scared.

« I don’t drink coffee. Gives me the runs. » She
lied swiftly, hoping to turn him off. She did not expect him to
smile wider, her refusal only adding fire to his perseverance.
Ignoring her obvious discomfort at his proximity, he stepped even
closer, enjoying the frightened widening of her eyes. His thumb
brushed the inner side of her upper arm rhythmically, and Kagome
swallowed.

« Then perhaps tea-« 

« Actually, I was hoping Higurashi-sensei could
show me around campus. » The redhead boy suddenly spoke up. Naraku
and Kagome both jumped, turning to look at Shippo standing at the
office entrance. He had not left the room as Kagome had initially
thought, and with a determined look he walked forward, deftly
blocking Naraku and standing next to Kagome. Kagome almost wept
with relief.

« I haven’t had a chance to look at the grounds
yet, and would like to know my way around campus before starting
tomorrow. You know, get to know the different classrooms so I don’t
lose my way and get lost. » He looked at Kagome with eyes far more
perceptive for someone so young. « If it’s alright with
Higurashi-sensei, that is. »

At first, Kagome was confused. The campus was
rather small, it was an elementary school after all. Shippo could
probably learn all there was to learn about the school in 15
minutes flat, with no help from her. But then she saw Shippo raise
his eyesbrows expectantly, head tilted slightly towards the door,
her only escape route, and she quickly caught on.

« That sounds like an excellent idea, Kinu-san. »
She breathed, siding up to him and looping her arm around
his.

Naraku frowned at this turn of events, his
upper lip curling. « Kinu-san, I’m sure somebody else could show you
the school grounds-« 

« No, I definitely think Higurashi-sensei would
be best. » Shippo interrupted again obstinately, subtly walking
backwards with the girl in tow. « She is going to be my Mentor; who
better to show me the ropes than her? And I am sure that
Headmaster-san has a lot of things to get to, being a director and
all. Awful busy, I imagine. » Shippo smiled pleasantly. « Wouldn’t
want to let your responsibilities pile up, would we, Headmaster? »
When Naraku glared down at him, Shippo looked back, not the least
bit intimidated.

Seeing that he had lost his chance, he conceded
begrudgingly. « Very well. But-« 

« Perfect! » Shippo exclaimed, and just then the
school bell rang, signaling the end of recess. « It was a pleasure
to meet you, Headmaster, now if you’ll excuse us. » And without
missing a beat, Shippo ran out the door, practically dragging a
grateful Kagome with him. As they rushed past Kagura’s desk, the
Wind-Witch stood up, pointing her fan at them. « No running in the
halls! » She shouted to their retreating backs.

It was only when they were out of the main wing
that they finally stopped. Kagome let go of Shippo’s arm, catching
her breath. A trembling hand came up to her throat, trying to calm
her frantic heart.

« Thanks for that. » Kagome whispered.

Shippo nodded, then tilted his head to the
side, frowning. « Is he always like that? »

Kagome hesitated, not wanting to speak ill of
her employer, especially to someone she didn’t know. « Not all the
time, no. » the woman said at length.

Shippo scoffed in disbelief. « God, I hope not.
I can’t stand people like that, think they can bully others into
doing everything they want! » He straightened his turquoise bow-tie,
which had become askew during their quick getaway. « The way he kept
touching you, 
ugh. Way too forward,
dude! Go take a cold shower or something. » He continued his angry
rant, and Kagome noticed the loss of the soft-spoken demeanor he
had adopted in the office. Instead, his speech shifted into that of
a boisterous young man, and Kagome realized that it had all been an
act. He was quite the shapeshifter.

Shippo turned towards the older woman, an
apologetic look in his eyes. « Look, you don’t really have to show
me around after school. I just said that to get him off your back.
You probably have something else to do, anyways. »

« I do, actually. But I don’t mind at all and
it’ll only take a moment. This is a pretty small school, after all.
And I owe you one. » Kagome said, winking at him.

Shippo grinned at her playfulness then turned
serious, almost pouting. « I know I’m just a pipsqueak, but if you
ever need me to pull you out of that guy’s web, just say the
word. »

Kagome laughed, warmed to the heart by his
words. Even though she was a total stranger, he was willing to go
that far for her. « Thank you. I’ll keep that in mind,
Kinu-san. »

The redhead made a face. « Please, call me
Shippo. It feels weird being addressed with an honorific by someone
older than me, Higurashi-san. » The youngster admitted,
embarrassed.

« Well, only if you call me Kagome. » The woman
agreed.

He smiled a childish grin, and Kagome found she
definitely liked this kid. He was sincere and genuine. As they
walked towards Kagome’s classroom so that he could meet her kids,
she laughed, remembering Shippo’s quick interference at the
headmaster’s office.

« That was some quick-thinking though. » She
remarked, recalling how swiftly he turned the tables on Naraku.
« You’re pretty clever, aren’t you? »

The young man smiled, his green eyes twinkling.
« As a fox. »

888

« Hey! So I didn’t see you when I got out, where
did you go? »

Kagome was driving down the interstate, making
her way home. She had just finished showing Shippo around the
school. Even though he could’ve left anytime during the day, Shippo
diligently stayed with Kagome, getting to know the kids in her
class better. Despite tomorrow being his official start at the
school as a Teacher’s Assistant, he remained the entire school day
with her, taking notes and helping out. After the final bell,
Kagome walked with him around campus as she had promised, and found
herself growing to like the young man even more. He was spirited,
eager to learn and very in-tune with children in a way that she had
never seen before. Although the tour had only taken Kagome half an
hour, she still freaked when she realized how late she it was.
Kagome was now racing to make it on time to her appointment with
Rin, whom she had promised to meet with today at 3’o’clock sharp.
Sesshoumaru looked like the sort of man who didn’t appreciate
tardiness.

To keep her mind off her impending meeting with
the stoic man and his sweet ward, Kagome dialed her best friend. « I
thought we agreed we’d meet up after school. »

On the other line, she heard Sango
hesitate.

« Something came up. » The Gym teacher said
vaguely.

Kagome clicked her tongue, a knowing grin
spreading on her face. « Uh-huh. And does this have anything to do
with a certain lecherous school doctor? »

Kagome laughed as Sango screeched incoherently
on the other side. « Hit the nail on the head, didn’t I? »

« It’s not what you think! He offered me a ride
home, and since I didn’t know how long it’d take for you to show
the new kid the ropes, I figured…why not? »

« Famous last words. » Kagome chuckled. « Thank
goodness I wasn’t there to witness you two canoodle. After that
meeting with Naraku, I would’ve puked if I saw that. »

« ‘Canoodle’?Ew, don’t say
it like that, it sounds so gross in a woman your age. »

« It’s the truth though. Can’t believe you
finally gave him a chance, although with the way you two have been
acting lately, it was only a matter of time. » Kagome poked
teasingly.

Kagome could almost picture Sango wincing. « So
you noticed, huh? »

The raven mentally cheered at the brunette’s
admission, screaming a silent ‘Yes!' »So you
admit 
are together! » She
squealed. Sango rolled her eyes at her, although Kagome couldn’t
see. « Grow up, Kagome. »

« Perks of being an Elementary schoolteacher, I
don’t have to. » She grinned goofily to herself, happy for her
friends. 
About damn time,
too.

« It’s not official yet or anything, ok? You
absolutely cannot tell anyone! » Sango yelled, then she groaned, and
Kagome knew she was covering her face, hiding a blush. « I can’t
believe even oblivious little Kagome noticed. »

« Oh, was it supposed to be a secret?
Because 
God, you guys
are 
so obvious, how could anyone not notice-« 

Suddenly, there was a
loud 
pop and Kagome’s car rocked violently as her front left
wheel fell into a massive hole in the road. She hadn’t even seen
it. Lurching forward, seatbelt biting into her chest, she grabbed
the steering wheel with both hands, trying to keep the car from
swerving to the next lane and crashing into another
vehicle.

« Sonnavabitch! » she screamed.

From the floor of the passenger’s side where it
had flown during the chaos, Kagome could hear Sango’s frantic voice
crackling distantly. And above that, Kagome caught the slight
metallic thump of the front wheel as it grated against the asphalt.
Cursing, Kagome carefully pulled the car aside to the curb, parking
it and putting on her emergency signals. When the car was finally
at a standstill, she set it to park and dove to retrieve her phone.
Sango was still shouting.

« I’m here! I’m here! » Kagome said loudly,
trying to soothe the panicking woman.

« Jesus Christ! Are you alright?! I heard you
scream and then-« 

« Yeah, sorry. I was distracted, hit a pothole
and…I think I have a flat. » Kagome spoke through gritted
teeth. She pushed her bangs away from her face, trying to catch her
breath. « Look, I’ll call you back, okay? »

« You better! »

Kagome hung up, threw the phone on the dash and
pressed her forehead against the steering wheel. Her heart hammered
against her ribcage, and Kagome attempted to calm down. She didn’t’
have to get out of the car to know that the front wheel was
totaled. Great. Perfect ending to her already crappy
day.

Kagome was too busy cursing up a storm under
her breath to notice a black, official-looking car pull up behind
her. Nor did she see the tall, suited figure climbing out of the
sleek vehicle and walking over to her own car with a swagger that
spoke volumes of the man’s self-confidence. It was only when he
knocked on her window that Kagome reacted, gasping at the sound and
the sudden shadow hovering above her. Heart racing again, she
looked up into a roguishly handsome face. When their eyes met over
tinted windows, he smiled.

« Need any help, sweetheart? »

888

And that’s that! Buahaha, I am the queen of
cliffhangers (I think.)

I know some of you were looking forward to
seeing Shippo, though maybe not like this. Tempting as it was to
make him one of Kagome’s students, I feel it’s a trope that’s
already been done a couple of times, one that I wanted to avoid.
Besides, who am I to deprive the world of grown-up Shippo? It was
too good to pass up.

I had a lot of fun coming up with different
roles for each character. Isn’t Kagura the perfect bitchy
Secretary? Or Naraku the best creepy Headmaster (or Principal if
you live in the states). Tell me what you think, love hearing from
you guys.

Wonder who that handsome stranger could be. And
next chapter, we’ll get to see what Sesshoumaru really thinks about
our favorite blue-eyed teacher. Maybe.

Stay tuned!

Chapter 2