Chapter 9: Race for Love
Inuyasha and Souta jogged across the pure white snow, chasing the fuming Kagome as she determinedly stomped away from the retreating snow mobile that was carrying Jesse down the hill. Inuyasha suppressed a smirk as he watched the boy gun it down to the bottom. Well that was an interesting encounter. Wonder if all of Kagome’s family’s friends are as interesting. Hope not. Shaking his head slightly, he turned his attention back to Kagome.
“Kagome wait up.” Souta called out chasing his sister‘s retreating figure. “You’re going too fast.”
Kagome spun around. “Next time we go down the hill, we are walking to the other side to get on the snow mobiles understand.” She asked, her face flushed with annoyance, her brown eyes flashing with anger.
Her expression stopped the two in their tracks, and Inuyasha and the boy exchanged bewildered looks. This only seemed to annoy Kagome further for the girl then let out a frustrated huff and turned to storm off once more. Inuyasha had to resist the urge to laugh as he studies her twitching eyebrows and furious expression with a trace of amusement. Man she’s mad. He thought repressing a grin. Sure the boy called Jesse which he had initially despised do to his flirtatious nature towards Kagome, had went a little too fast up the giant hills that Kagome and her family had came to sled on, but it wasn‘t bad enough to work herself into a huff over. Inuyasha had thoroughly enjoyed the ride himself and when it had ended, Jesse had become one of the friendliest people he had meant so far. He even gave Inuyasha some advice on how to win Kagome over, not that it seemed do any good for Jesse himself. Seemed like Jesse just likes messing with people, particularly with Kagome. He could not blame him. She looked so cute when she was angry. He loved the way she would screw up her face, ball up her fist, and scream at him. Almost makes the following sit well worth it.
Watching the young woman stomping through the snow, Inuyasha could not resist. Smiling mischievously, Inuyasha braced himself before calling out to her. “But Kagome, Jesse promised next time he would show me how fast that thing could go remember?”
Souta gave the hanyou a look that clearly stated ‘are you crazy’, but Inuyasha wasn’t paying attention. He was waiting for Kagome’s reaction. And he did not have to wait long because as soon as those words left his mouth, Kagome turned to face him, her face the color of a ripe apple. She gave the hanyou a glare so cold it could have turned him to stone. She balled up her fist and she squared her shoulders in a stance that reminded Inuyasha of a solider about to go into battle. Then Kagome looked the hanyou directly into the eyes and her body went ridged. “Inuyasha, . . . sit.” She spat.
Inuyasha slammed face first into the cold snow as the spell gripped the necklace and drug him to the ground. Inuyasha finally allowed him to smirked, Yep, definitely worth it. As he lay there, his sensitive ears caught the sound of Kagome’s boots crunching on the powder surrounding him as she pivoted and continued to storm away. A few seconds later Souta’s footsteps joined in.
“Kagome, that wasn’t very nice.” Souta protested, jogging to keep up with his sister. “He didn’t do anything wrong. I’m going to tell mom about this.” The young boy threatened glaring at his sister. Trudging beside her, he glanced back at the boy still stuck in the snow. “Look, he can’t even get up.”
Kagome shrugged and continued walking leaving the hanyou behind. “So, serves him right. Besides it’s just the spell, it will wear off eventually.”
From his position still face down in the snow, Inuyasha rolled his eyes. Eventually. He thought wearily. Staying as still as possible to avoid inadvertently sending snow down into his clothing, he listened as the two young sibling’s footsteps faded into the distance . As they did, another sound caught his attention. Soft voices approaching. His heckles rose on the back of his neck. Someone is standing over me. He thought with a shiver.
“Is he dead?” he heard a soft young voice ask.
Just that moment, Inuyasha felt the invisible force upon his back begin to lift as the spell wore off. The second his whole body was free, Inuyasha leapt to his feet, ready for a fight. When he did, he found himself face to face with a little girl that looked to be about five. Around her, a group of older children stood a distance off, holding sleds in their hands. Inuyasha glanced at them, seeing a slight trace of uneasiness in their eyes, before fixing his gaze on the little girl in front of him. The little girl stared back with curious cornflower blue eyes.
“Hello,” The young girl said giving Inuyasha a small wave.
Inuyasha glanced behind him, confused for a moment whether or not the child was talking to him. Usually children from his time knew better then to talk to a half demon. Seeing no one else, he turned back around and looked at her. “Um, hi.”
“We saw you and that pretty girl fighting and then you fell down. You laid there for a long time. Are you dead?” The little girl asked taking a step towards him. “My brother pushed me down once and it was really cold. I won’t lay in the snow. Specially on my face.” she informed him as she circled him. Inuyasha gave her a glare. Like I could help it. He thought. He considered giving the child a good thump like he did Shippo when he said something stupid but decided against it. Instead, he gave the child a little warning growl, which seemed to frighten children behind him. The girl in front of him, however, did not seem to notice. “Your cloths are all wet. Your mommies going to be mad at you.”
An older male child stepped out of the group. “He’s fine, sis. Come on, let’s go.”
The child ignored the boy as well. Looking Inuyasha over, the young girl frowned. “You got long hair. Boys aren’t supposed to have long hair.”
Inuyasha smirked slightly brushing the snow from his clothing. Brave little thing. He thought. Deciding to humor her at least for the moment, he replied. “Really, lots of boys I know have long hair, and no, I’m not hurt. I’m Inuyasha. What’s your name?”
“Sakura,” the young girl stated. “Your hair is pretty, even if it’s long.”
“Thank you,” Inuyasha said politely glancing off in the direction the two youths fading images had disappeared. Looking at the girl, he said. “Anyway, I’m fine, but I have to get going.” Walking forward, the Hanyou watched as the small circle of children surrounding him parted permitting him to pass through. However, after trudging a few feet in the snow, Inuyasha became acutely aware of the sound of small footsteps following him and glancing back saw that the little girl had fallen into step behind him. The older brother trudged begrudgingly, yet silent at her side.
“My grandmother has hair like yours. She says its ‘cus she’s old. You don’t look old.” The little girl stated jogging up in front of him to get a better look at him. “Fuji, do you think he is old?”
Inuyasha glanced back at the brother who glared at him. To his sister, he said, “Of course he’s not old, stupid. He just dyed it.”
“No, I didn’t.” Inuyasha shot back, pausing to glare at the boy. The boy gave him a frightened look. Inuyasha immediately felt a little bit guilty. Smiling at the boy slightly in an attempt to sooth his fear, Inuyasha turned himself back around to face the little girl. “Actually, you’re right I am old. Over 500 years old in fact, but I think you should head back. After all, I am sure your mother must be worried about you by now.”
“Is that lady your sister?”
Inuyasha paused confused. “What?”
“That mean lady.” The little girl clarified her blue eyes sparkling curiously.
Inuyasha blinked. “Kagome? Oh no, she’s not my sister.” He stated, resisting the urge to curse when he felt a blush threaten to rise on his cheeks. It had occurred to him that he had been doing a lot of blushing as of late and he didn’t like that.
The little girls eyes brightened and her lips curved into a little smile. “Oh, I get it. She’s your girlfriend isn’t it?”
Inuyasha felt his cheeks redden and he rushed to turn away. “Um, no she’s. . . Just a friend. You really should be leaving.” He replied quickening his steps. The little girl giggled and skipped to keep up with him.
“You like her don’t you?” She questioned, running to jump in front of him, blocking his way. “She’s pretty. You should tell her you like her.”
Inuyasha blushed deepened. “We’re just. . .” Inuyasha paused suddenly realizing that his voice had grown exceedingly loud and that his fist was clenched at his side. He growled and shook his head. I am fighting with a five year old.
The little boy chose this time to chime in. “Sakura, come on, we got to get back before Mom flips.”
“K.” The little girl replied, trotting back to stand beside her brother still dragging her little sled behind her. Inuyasha paused to watch them go. After walking a few more feet the little girl spun around to face him once more. “ You should pick her some flowers. Whenever my daddy makes mommy mad he gets her flowers. Maybe then she won’t be so mad.” Waving the little girl ran off, disappearing in the snow-white hills.
Inuyasha watched her go with a thoughtful expression. Flowers, tell her you like her. Shaking himself to clear his mind, Inuyasha turned back and jogged in the direction Kagome and Souta’s voices had faded to.
A few minutes later, Inuyasha caught sight of the two lounging in the snow sitting on their sleds. Kagome jumps up immediately upon seeing Inuyasha. “Inuyasha, there you are. We thought you had gotten lost.” The young woman commented giving him a wide smile, her earlier anger at the Hanyou seemed to have dissipated.
Inuyasha blushed. “No, Just got held up by something.”
“Told you, you probably hurt him. He probably was unconscious. He just won’t say anything cause he thinks you will sit him.” Souta accused glaring at his sister.
Kagome rolled her eyes. “Stupid.” she muttered, causing the boy to stick out his tongue at his sister. “Anyway, ready to go again. This time you can go by your self now that you know what to do.”
Inuyasha glanced over at Kagome with a mixture of surprise and apprehension. “But I don’t know how to steer yet.” Inuyasha protest as a pink sled was suddenly thrust into his hand.
“Oh come on, steering is easy and of course one of us will follow you down the hill. Here. Sit down and we will show you so that you can get going.” Plopping down on the ground on her own sled, Kagome grabbed the Hanyou’s sword callused hand and pulling him down beside her. Inuyasha landed in the snow with a soft thud.
“Hey.” the teen protested.
Kagome ignored him. “Ok Inuyasha, steering on a sled is really easy. All you do is you grab these handles right here, see, and you pull the front of the sled up like this.” Kagome instructed pulling up her own sled in demonstration.
Inuyasha examined Kagome’s stance for a moment before glancing down at the rolled up sled he held in his hands. Cutting the string that bound it with his claws, Inuyasha unrolled the thin plastic material and plopped it down into the snow. Jumping onto the slippery material. Inuyasha pulled his own sled up, mimicking Kagome. “Like this?”
“Uh huh. Ok, so that’s it. Now, if you want to turn, all you have to do is to lean in the direction to the way you want to go. If you want to turn right, you lean to the right . To turn left, lean to the left. Think you can do that?” Kagome asked, demonstrating again how to turn to her attentive is not impatient student.
“Left, right.” Inuyasha repeated following her movements intently, the look on his face more suited for someone learning bimolecular chemistry then just learning to steer a sled (A.N ok that one was for me. School sucks.) . “Ok, got that. What’s next?” he said, looking up at her intently.
Kagome raised an eyebrow. Little eager isn’t he. “Um.. . . That’s it.” Kagome informed him calmly. “Its sledding not rocket science.”
Inuyasha gave her a questioning look. “Rocket Science?”
Kagome sighed and rolled her eyes. “Never mind. Ok, ready for your first run?”
Inuyasha’s eyes widened. Focusing back on the pink plastic material, he went through the motions again. Ok, lift and right for right. Lift and left for left and . . . Pull up both to stop? How do you stop. Inuyasha shook his head to clear his confused thoughts. “Um, Kagome. . .” before Inuyasha could finish the question, hands suddenly grasped his back.
“Ok, go Inuyasha.” Souta cried out. Grabbing firmly on to the youths shoulders, the young boy gave Inuyasha a quick but effective push. The teen, which had unfortunately set his sled down on that edge of a rather steep incline, immediately began to slip forward. Inuyasha’s claws dug into his hands as he gripped the sled handles with all his might as the incline caused the sled to pick up speed at an alarming rate. Soon the trees, hills, and other sleders began to blur as the sled slid gracefully over the snow.
Inuyasha’s heart thudded wildly out of control as he held on for dear life. Oh crap, I am going to crash. I don’t know how to stop this thing. His mind raced as he stared at the scenery slipping by. White mound after white mound whizzed past and it was all Inuyasha could do to hold on to his dignity and stop himself from screaming. Then the worst happened when suddenly, the sled vaulted over a hill revealed a large fir tree directly in Inuyasha’s path. The hanyou yelped. Damn left. Left!! How do you turn this stupid thing to the left. His eyes widening in remembrance. Inuyasha tightened his grip on the sled and yanked the material sharply to the left. The sled slowly began to slide leftward, but at a pace that was painfully slow. Inuyasha stared at the tree, silently praying for the sled to hurry up and turn. Damn, I am not going to make it. He thought mournfully as he saw the tree come ever closer. Inuyasha closed his eyes. Please turn faster. He prayed. Seconds passed. No thump. Inuyasha cracked open his eyes to see clear snow in front of him. I did it .He thought glancing back at the big fir. I cleared it.
Inuyasha heard a giggle and the sound of sliding snow as someone came up beside him on their own sled. Inuyasha glanced over and flashed Kagome a wide smile. “Look Kagome, I’m steering pretty well ain’t I?” The hanyou boasted proudly. Kagome did not answer. Instead, her eyes grew wide as saucers as she stared at some thing slightly further in front of Inuyasha sled. Inuyasha, who had not been focusing on what was in front of him, turned his attention back to the front and gasped. Just over the hill, a small line of children sat their sleds side by side. Inuyasha’s eyes widened. His mind began to race. Damn. . . Damn, I don’t know how to stop. I am going to run them over.
Kagome seemed to read the boy’s mind. “Inuyasha, jump off. . . Bail out now.”
Kagome words took a few seconds to sink in. Bail out. The hanyou quickly obeyed, diving off the sliding pink plastic and hitting the ground hard. His forward momentum caused him to roll. Inuyasha dug his claws into the ground to try to stop, but the action did not help much. The hanyou cursed as he hit a rock, then barely grazed a tree until finally he came to a stop on a slight incline. Shortly afterwards, he heard again the sound of sliding snow.
“Inuyasha!! Inuyasha, are you ok?” Inuyasha heard Kagome cry as she slid her sled to a stop beside where he lay.
Inuyasha raised his head and groaned as he sat up. Damn that hurt. He thought as he rubbed his head. To Kagome he responded, “Yeah I’m ok” pulling himself to his feet e shook himself to free the clumps of snow from his hair.
Kagome giggled. “I guess I should have showed you how to stop huh.”
Inuyasha nodded. “That would have been helpful.” Inuyasha agreed before glancing around. “Where did that thing go?” he muttered under his breath.
Just then a small boy came trotting up to the pair. “ Hey mister, I think this is yours. It hit me on the back.” Handing over the pink sled, the boy smiled a toothy smile before bowing and scurrying away.
Kagome raised an eyebrow but did not comment. “You sure your ok? You hit your head pretty hard.” She stated skeptically.
Inuyasha waved her away. “I’m fine. We have to get back to the top, Kagome. I want to try again.” Grabbing the raven teen’s hand, Inuyasha tugged her in the direction of the hilltop.”
Kagome giggled at his eagerness, but resisted the tug. “Inuyasha, your going the wrong way. We should grab our sled and go the rest of the way down the hill. The snowmobiles won’t come up to pick us up.” Kagome cried out grabbing her own pink sled and jogging to catch up with him.
“Why wait for the snow mobiles when we can climb the hill in half the time. A third if you hadn’t made me wear these boots.” the hanyou teased.
Kagome frowned and stopped where she was. “Hey, you’re the one who wanted to blend in. Besides, climbing up a hill this steep is to much work. We will get tired after two runs. Now come on.” Kagome stated turning around and plopping back down on her sled. Before she could push off, however, a pair of strong arms wrapped around her midsection and yanked her upward. Kagome squealed. “Inuyasha!”
The hanyou ignored her. Instead, he tossed her over his shoulder and began to trudge up the hill. Hope she doesn’t sit me. He thought. Or we will both go down hard. But he did not need to worry about that because the girl in question was currently to busy squirming to talk. He tightened his grip. “Oy Kagome stay still or I might drop you.”
“Come on Inuyasha put me. . . Ah put me down.” Kagome cried out before, to Inuyasha’s shock and surprise, bursting into laughter. Kicking like a child, she squirmed and giggled demanding in a high voice to be put down. Figuring that she was not made enough to sit him, Inuyasha just smirked at her and playfully bounced her on his shoulder causing Kagome to giggle harder and squeal. Her happiness was infectious and her laughter threatened to bring Inuyasha’s own roaring up from his chest. He could not remember the last time that he felt so good.
“Stay still or I will have to drop you and we don’t want that pretty dark hair of your to get dirty now do we?” Inuyasha teased mischievously switching the girl’s position on his shoulder so she was hanging upside down and loosened his grip like he was going to drop her on the snow. This only caused Kagome to start to shriek so loudly with a mixture of fear and excitement that it echoed. Carrying her upside down as easily as one would carry a feather, Inuyasha started to trot up the hill despite the screaming protest of the girl in his arms. Around him he could see some of the mothers of the children smiling at him in a faraway dreamlike way. I wonder what we look like to them. Another average teenage couple I suppose. He thought carefully skirting the fir tree that had almost caused his demise earlier. His mind stuttered suddenly. Couple? He did not quite know what to make of that thought.
Meanwhile, Kagome had stopped struggling against him and was now lying limply across his back. The position made Inuyasha think of a hunter carrying a kill home. Some might have thought she was dead if not for the soft giggles that were still emanating from her. Deciding that the girl had suffered enough for contradicting him, Inuyasha took pity on her and carefully flipped her to a more comfortable and dignified position, bride style in his arms. The move caused the girl to cry out in surprise and instinctively throw her arms around his neck, clinging slightly to him. Inuyasha felt a warm flush rush into his cheeks and a fluttering begin in his chest when the young women leaned her head against his shoulder. The youth bounded skillfully up the remaining two feet of hill to make a solid landing beside Souta who had watched the whole affair with a hint of amusement.
“Nice steering.” the boy teased causing the young teens already pink cheeks to turn scarlet.
“This is coming from the person who broke his arm running into a ditch last year.” Kagome’s muffled voice rang out from Inuyasha’s shoulder. “Mhh, your chest is so warm, Inuyasha.”
“Feh.” Inuyasha replied causing Kagome to lift her head to smile at him. The two youths eyes locked and they froze.
Souta made a face. “Ew get a room.”
Kagome blushed and glared at him, but after glancing around and seeing a good number of faces now studying them, she decided that perhaps it would be best if she got down. Pulling away from Inuyasha’s shoulder, she released her arms from around Inuyasha‘s neck, and Inuyasha carefully put her down. She muttered a soft thank you and stepped away, “Ok, now what?” Before anyone could speak, a voice rang out.
“Kagome, Souta, there you are.” Kagome’s mother called out from just behind the group causing all three youths to jump about a foot.
“Mom, don’t do that.” Souta stated his hand grasped at his chest.
“Sorry dear, I really didn’t mean to. I just came to bring you guys some hot chocolate. You guys have been sledding for over an hour now. I thought you might enjoy something warm to drink.” Kagome’s mother stated, smiling warmly at the three children. In her hands she balanced three small Styrofoam cups covered with tiny lids. She handed one of the cups to her daughter.
“Thanks mom.” Kagome said sipping on the hot liquid. “Perfect timing as usual.”
Kagome’s mother smiled acknowledging at her before turning to hand Inuyasha his cup. She paused when she noticed the clothing Hanyou’s dingy and dripping silver hair and raised an eyebrow. “What happened dear. You are all wet.” Kagome’s mother questioned, handing him the steaming cup.
Inuyasha opened his mouth to speak, but Souta jumped in before he could. “You missed it mom. Inuyasha biffed it big time on the hill. He almost ran in to a tree too.” Souta said giggling.
Kagome’s mother flashed Inuyasha a worried look for a moment only to receive an annoyed look in return. “Oh, you must be careful going down these hills Inuyasha. After all it was just last year that Souta broke his arm sledding didn’t you dear?” she asked a mischievous glint in her eye. Souta stopped laughing and sent her a glare. Sulking, the young boy took his cup of hot chocolate from her hand and plopped down in the snow to pout.
Inuyasha expected Kagome’s mother to say a simple goodbye, maybe something about making sure they bring the cup up to throw away their cups once they were done with their coco, and return to the tent to talk with the other “adults”, but to the boy’s surprise Kagome mother picked up Souta’s abandoned sled and positioned it so that it was between her two children and plopped gracefully down in the snow beside them.
“Are you enjoying yourself Inuyasha?” the women asked warmly, suddenly producing a thermoses out of what seemed like thin air and settling back on the pink material to look at the hanyou.
Inuyasha blinked, not use to being put on the spot. “Um. . . Yeah. Sledding is lots of fun. I got to ride on this moving four-wheeled thing, that was fun. So yeah.”
Kagome’s mother smiled widely at him. “That’s good. I’m glad that you are enjoying yourself. Have you met anyone your own age yet?” she asked. When Inuyasha shook his head, she explained. “Lots of people here go to school with Kagome. She should introduce you to some of the neighborhood. I know I have been receiving lots of curious questions about you.” Kagome’s mother said taking a sip out of her thermos and staring down at the children on the hill.
Inuyasha flinched and eyed the people around him wearily. Curious questions, she had said. Rarely in his life experience did that mean anything good. “I try my best to blend in.” Inuyasha said meekly, his tone almost apologetic.
Kagome‘s mother seemed to notice and gave the boy a reassuring smile. “Oh, its not your fault, dear. You were doomed the moment Peony spotted you. She loves to gossip. Now everyone is clamoring to know more about the handsome silver haired price that Kagome is seeing.”
“Mom!!!” Kagome screamed, blushing a deep scarlet. Her eyes were wide and she looked like she wanted to sink into the snow. “Please tell me you corrected them.” Kagome demanded, burring her burning face into her hands.
“Now Kagome, it’s not my place to correct them. Besides, what’s the harm of letting some old ladies like me having a little something to chat about.”
Inuyasha eyes shifted between Kagome and her mother. Seeing? What’s that mean? I see Kagome all the time.
“If it bothers you, you can correct them yourself later on.” Kagome’s mother continued, oblivious to the Hanyou’s confusion. “ In the meantime, you can watch your brother and Inuyasha for awhile till I get back. Please stay off the hills.”
Kagome gave her mother a confused look. “Watch Souta? Where are you going?” She asked.
“Mom, I don’t need to be watched. I’m not a kid anymore.” The boy protested in the same moments.
Kagome’s mother offered a warm smile to both her children. “Of course, your not Souta, but even the oldest kids get hurt some time. Besides, I’m counting on you to keep an eye on Inuyasha for me.” She teased winking at Inuyasha. Turning to her daughter she continued. “I won’t be going far. I am just walking out to meet your grandfather at the door. They will be arriving soon.” Kagome’s mother stated rising from the sled. Taking the cups from the children, Kagome’s mother started towards the tent. “I’ll be right back. You guys just stay there.”
The youths watched her go with bitten tongues. The moment she went out of hearing range, they all started talking at once.
“Man, why does she still keep me like a kid, I’m ten years old.” Souta moaned immediately, sending his sister an angry glare. “Why do you always get to be in charge?”
“Stop complaining At least you don’t have to a room full of blue hairs ogling at you like because they don’t have anything better to do, but to talk about your personal life.” Kagome grumbled.
“Hey Kagome what did your mother mean by ‘seeing you’” Inuyasha asked, a question which went unheard between the bickering siblings.
“Mom says that you should always respect your elders.” Souta shot back causing Kagome to send him a deadly glare. Souta stuck his tongue out in response causing Inuyasha to forget his question and began to wonder whether he should position himself between the two to prevent them for going at each other’s throats.
Instead, he asked. “Um, so what we going to do now.”
Both the siblings’ mouths snapped shut at the question and the group fell silent .
“Um, we could go back to the tent.“ Kagome suggested after a pause.
“Boring.” Souta called rolling his eyes. “Besides, I thought you said you don’t want the blue hairs ogling at you.”
“How about a hit you so hard you will become a blue hair.” Kagome threatened.
“That doesn’t even make sense.”
“It doesn’t have to. I’m in charge, remember.” Kagome responded her voice rising. Inuyasha glance around them and noticed that quite a few people were looking their way. “Um guys.”
“So what. Older doesn’t mean smarter.” Souta pointed out. “Especially in your case.”
“SOUTA I AM GOING TO. . .”
“GUYS.” Inuyasha finally cried out causing both siblings to swivel and glare at him. “Everyone is looking at us.” He pointed out.
Kagome and Souta blushed when they saw that he was right and the group fell into silence once more.
Then Souta cried out. “I know lets have a race.” Grabbing, his sled he said. “ We can have a race. First, one down wins.”
“Souta are you senile. Mom just said that we were supposed to stay right here.” Kagome reminded him.
“Oh, come on. We can be down and back up before they even know we are gone. Besides, you know grandpa. Once he gets here, he will insist that we come and sit with him for a while. Come on Kagome, this might be the only chance we get.” Souta insisted.
“No, Souta. Its to risky. Especially with Inuyasha being new at this. What would we do if he ends up ramming into a tree or something.” Kagome nodded her head in firm resolve. “Nope not happening.”
Souta’s face seemed to fall and for a moment the boy looked like he had yielded to his fate.
Then his eyes narrowed and a sort of mischievous look came over his face. Looking at Inuyasha he sighed. “That’s to bad. I mean I was going to suggest that Inuyasha ride with you since he is so new at this but if your so against it then well. . .” he trailed off.
Kagome whipped around, a slight flush tinting her cheeks. “What? Ride with me?” she glanced at . Inuyasha and her blush deepened before she looked away.
Inuyasha gave the girl a confused look. Looking down at the small pink sled, he said. “But I thought only one person could fit on one of these things.”
Souta gave him a devilish grin. “Oh no two people can fit. If they scrunch together. Really close, like really, really close.” He elaborated smiling from ear to ear when the hanyou turned scarlet at the thought. “We could go down together that way . And we would not have to worry about Inuyasha steering.”
“No, we couldn’t. I mean. . .” Kagome’s resolve seemed to be faltering. “We couldn’t could we.”
Sensing Kagome’s weakness, Souta went in for the kill. “I tell you what. We can even bet on it. First one down has to stay and listen to Grandpa tell everyone the story of when we fell into the old outhouse in the neighboring shrine. From start to finish. Even when he starts going on about how cute we looked butt naked in the tub and pulls out that picture.” Souta said with a cringe. That picture of the two of them at the age of three naked, surrounded by bubbles as they cried in unison in the tub has haunted the pair at every social gathering they have ever had to face. His grandfather even threatened on occasion to put it in the paper during their birthday. Being able to slip out quietly while that story was being told was more than enough.
Kagome cocked her head to the side and looked thoughtful. “I don’t know.”
“Hey what will I get?” Inuyasha asked. Not that the thought of seeing one of the two siblings squirm was not enough to entice him to join. (a.n. as if he really needed a reason besides getting to cling to Kagome J), but still having something for him to look forward too would give him some motivation.
Souta shrugged. “I don’t know. You and Kagome can slobber all over each other I guess.” he said off-handishly.
“Souta.” Kagome cried out reaching over to whack her sibling over the head. The boy ducked and what followed was a scuffle that would have reminded Inuyasha of him and Shippo if he had been listening.
But Inuyasha wasn’t. Instead he was thinking about the boys words. Its not that he wanted to make out with Kagome. Even the word make out reminded him all to much of a certain amours monk that they both knew. But Inuyasha could not help but find himself thinking back to that incident under the mistle toe. The thought of how his heart had pounded and how much warmth and comfort had filled him in that moment made his heart ache. “Ok. I’ll do it.”
Kagome and Souta froze, Kagome still holding the handful of snow she had been planned to rub into her brother’s face. They stared at him slack jawed for a moment causing the boy to heat up in a blush.
Then, Souta smiled smugly before turning to his sister. “Well Sis. You’re the only one left.” He prompted.
Kagome blushed and looked up at the hill as if afraid that her mother and grandfather would suddenly come over the lip and yell at them. “Ok. I’ll do it. But lets do it quickly, and your not allowed to sucker out of it if we win.” she said giving him her best, ‘I’m your sister and I will shave your head in your sleep if you weasel out.’ look.
Souta gave her a victorious smile before nodding.
Suddenly feeling like she would regret this later. Kagome dropped the ball of snow she was still holding and sighed. “ok, lets hurry up then.” Kagome said plopping down on the pink little sheet. Souta smiled and plopped down on his and the two sat there staring up at Inuyasha. It took a minute for the hanyou to realize why and when he did, he blushed
Approaching Kagome’s sled he hesitated. “Um, Kagome how. . .?”
Kagome slid up on the pink material, not looking back at him. “Just climb on the back and wrap your hands around my waist.” Kagome instructed. Inuyasha could tell she was bright red just by the tone of her voice, a fact that made the already jumpy hanyou even more nervous. Carefully, he sat down on the pink material unsure of how to go about this. He reached forward to put his arm around her, but hesitated and pulled back when he realized he did not know where to put it. Also, he could tell he was too far back on the sled by the moisture that was seeping into his snow pants, but didn’t know how to work that either. This would be so much easier if Kagome just let me drive. At least, she knows how to hold on. He mussed.
Souta watched the hanyou stumble and, finally decided to help. Jumping off his sled, he jumped onto his sisters. He then plopped himself down so that Kagome was between his legs. “Like this Inuyasha.” he said wrapping his arms around his sister’s waist. When the hanyou just stared, Souta rolled his eyes and rolled off. Pushing the stunned boy forward, he forced him down on the sled. “Put your legs around her just like I did. There you go.” Souta said praising when the hanyou moved to obey.
The hanyou sat stiffly on the thin pink sled , his back rim rod straight, his arms stretched their full lengths out in order to curl the edges of his fingertips around her waist. There was a good foot between the two. Souta smirked. “Good. We are ready to go.” he said making his way around the back of their sled. “almost..” he added. Using the boot of his heel, he gave the hanyou a sharp kick to the base of his spine.
Inuyasha howled in pain, jumping instinctively forward on his sled, ramming his body against Kagome in the process. The motion made them slid forward suddenly. Set on an incline the sled did what it was designed to do and began to slip forward. Whether the two teen were ready or not, the sledding race had began. Inuyasha scrambled to get a good grip on the girl as they began to move, wrapping his legs around Kagome now without fear. He also hurried to wrap his arms around her, tightening his grip as the sled slid past the lip of the hill and really began to pick up momentum.
Meanwhile from the top of the hill, Souta‘s voice rang out in protest, “No fair,” before the sound of the crunching of boots in the snow and a body falling hard on something caught Inuyasha’s attention. Moments later, Souta came flying up next to them. “ That’s not fair you got a head start.” he protested, glaring at his sister from atop his own sled.
Kagome, who had only just recovered from the shock of having Inuyasha suddenly rammed into her tailbone, glared right back. “ oh yeah, and you shoving into us is any fairer. Face it Souta, you just down want to lose.” she shouted.
Inuyasha’s mind noted their voices instinctively, but Inuyasha was not paying much attention to their worlds. Instead, he was focusing on the thudding of his heart, a reaction created from a mixture of the exhilaration of the sled ride and the sheer overwhelming feeling of being so near to Kagome. Its not that Inuyasha had never been this close to her before. After all she spent most of her time clinging to his back as he ran through the forest. But somehow this was different. He was not running in the forest now, focusing all his mental abilities to keep them from slamming into a tree or some other surrounding foliage. No, this time she was practically sitting in his lap, her back leaning so deeply into his chest that he could feel her heart beating against his. This time he could smell her scent rushing over him in wave after wave of dizzying wind. It was all the hanyou could to think straight in this position.
“INYASHA!” a voice called out shrilly, this time directly in his ear and finally Inuyasha snapped out of his reverie. “Lean forward, closer.” Kagome called out.
Inuyasha had to shake his head once to clear it. He could not believe what the girl was saying. Lean forward. Their bodies were practically melded as it was. “What? Why?”
“Come on Inuyasha, he is gaining on us.” Suddenly it all came back to Inuyasha. The bet. Glancing back, Inuyasha saw the small form of Souta coming up at their side, a feral grin of victory plastered on his face. Oh no he doesn’t. Inuyasha thought. Leaning against the warm form of the girl in front of him, he rested his head against her shoulder as he peered back at the boy. “Like this?”
“Perfect,” Kagome yelled as she expertly pulled the string to the sled to the right directing their sled into a deep dip in the snow. Their sled plunged forward with newfound speed, pulling away from their competition. Kagome let out a cry of victory. They were almost to the bottom and they were ahead. She could see the contempt plastered on Souta’s face plain as day.\
Kagome could not help but laugh. Sure, she felt a little bad that Souta would have to sit there once again and listen to her grandfather tell that ridiculous story. On any other day, she might have considered suffering through it and letting him win. After all, with her being in the feudal era more then not now a days, Souta had to stand alone with Grandpa at the fair and festivals that inevitably led to family gatherings, but this time there was something else on the line. She would never admit it but she had felt more then a tinge of pleasure when the hanyou had excepted Souta’s suggestion of his prize. Inuyasha was jumpy at best and skittish at worst especially when things like feelings came into play. But the memory of that night under the mistle toe came back to her, how the boy had froze in shock at the first touch of her lips against his and then he responded. Melting into the kiss almost like a girl would. She could still feel her heart beating in that wonderful rhythm, that rhythm that reminded her of a bird singing. Her whole body singing. Smiling at the memory Kagome leaned further forward, feeling the hanyou move with her. Just a few more feet. Smiling, she risked glancing back at her brother. “Have fun with grandpa Souta.” she sung in a high voice.
“Sorry, Kagome.” a sudden voice called from their left shocking all three of the youths. Inuyasha stared with a mixture of shock and amazement as Mrs. Higurashi suddenly swooped forward from their left passing both of her children with ease on the small pink sled. Inuyasha watched with mouth agape as the laughing women slid into the finish line at the base of the hill, laughing at the looks of pure amazement her children were giving her. Sliding to a stop, she jumped to her feet just as her children were making in to the end of the hill. Pumping her fist in victory, she reached down to snap up the pink sled at her feet and turning to face her children in one fluid and graceful movement. “Well, well, well. Someone is not at the top of the hill where they were suppose to be. “ she commented as the trio slid to a stop.
Kagome jumped up from her place on the sled. “Mom, how in the world. . .”
Mrs. Higurashi held out a hand to shush her. “Now Now, that does not answer my question. Didn’t I tell you to wait up at the top of the hill.” The three youths looked up before lowing their faces in shame. Then Mrs. Higurashi’s face broke out into a smile. “Looks like both of you will have to listen to grandpa’s story now won’t you. “ she said causing three heads to snap up from their bowed position to stare at her with shock. Laughing, Mrs. Higuarashi looked up towards the top of the hill. The three children’s gaze followed and there they saw Kagome’s grandfather’s form looking down on them, he old mans form shaking in laughter. Mrs. Higurashi beamed a smile back at the children. “Now, I think its time we go up to the tent and admit defeat don’t you think.”
“But Mom,” Souta began to protest, but Mrs. Higurashi held up her hand again.
“No, but mom me. Come on.” with that Mrs. Higurashi turned, striding towards the waiting snowmobiles, which were a good walk away, leaving the three children behind.
Souta sighed and turned back to his sister. “I would have won.” he muttered sullenly.
“You wish.” Kagome muttered in return. Glancing up at her moms retreating form, she could not help but feel a tiny sense of regret. We were so close. He. . . I mean we could have won it. We could have. . . We could have. . . Sighing, she reached down to pick up the sled, but froze when a hand suddenly collided with hers. She blushed and pulled away.
“ We would have won.” she heard Inuyasha mutter said causing Kagome heart to skip a beat. Oh my god. Did I say that out loud. she wondered. Glancing up quickly, she was relieved to find, by the annoyed and disappointed look on Inuyasha face, that she did not. Inuyasha continued. “I mean we were right there. Little squirts lucky.”
“Yeah,” Kagome smiled shakily, causing Inuyasha to give her a slightly confused look before moving forward.
“should we go?” he asked.
The two started towards the direction of the snowmobile where her mother and brother were already quite some distance away. Looking at the teen beside her, Kagome hesitated before reaching and taking the hanyou hand. The boy started slightly, but Kagome could see a slight smile quirk at his lips and she could not help but smile in return. He did not even blush this time. She thought happily. “To bad to. It would have been great to see Souta squirm.” she stated with a giggle.
The hanyou at her side nodded. “Yeah it would have.” He said with a grin. But then suddenly, he went quiet and looked to the side, his eyes thoughtful.
Kagome looked up surprise. There was something in the look of the boy’s face that she was not use to. A shy reflection perhaps or maybe even regret. I wonder what’s wrong. she thought giving the boy a squeeze. The boy looked up in surprise and to her surprise a small blush crossed his face. Kagome started at the blush confused for a moment before a thought popped into her head, causing her to smile. “That’s not all is it.” she asked mischievously. “ You disappointed about something else aren’t you?” she asked. She already knew the answer to that, and just as she thought it would, Inuyasha’s face lit up in scarlet and he dropped her hand, reverting back to the familiar old defensive Inuyasha.
“No, what else would I be disappointed about?” he demanded, giving her a stern glare. Normally this would have been enough to earn Inuyasha another ride to the ground, but if this vacation has served to teach her anything it was not to rise to the bait. Instead, she smiled and leaned up surprising the hanyou when she pressed her lips against him.
This time Inuyasha did blush, madly. Automatically, his heart started to race and he felt the dizziness come back same as before, but this time it was a little different. This time it wasn’t the big ebb that he had felt the first. The strange fear and high. This time his heart did not seem to swell in his chest till it was about to explode from fear and love. Instead, he sighed as a wave of warmth hit him unlike he had never felt before. Warmth that seemed to start from the soft lips against hers and wash over his limbs It felt like warm water, drenching him from head to toe only this was not water. No, there was something else. Something that filled him from his head to his toes. A strange calmness, one that he had not felt since he was very young. Kagome seemed to feel it to cause he heard her sigh, felt her breath on his lips as they moved softly against his.
“Kagome?” at the sound of her mother’s voice, the girl in question jumped about a foot, pulling away from the hanyou. Her mother gave her a smile from where she stood beside the snowmobiles. “You guys coming.”
“Yeah.” she called back. Putting her burning face in her hands, she groaned. Oh, what in the world did I do that for? I just up and kissed him. She thought her mind racing. I knew that they were right behind us. What an idiot I am. Poor Inuyasha is probably so embarrassed that he won’t speak to me for a week. Sighing deeply, Kagome spun around trudging her way towards the snowmobile, to embarrassed and depressed to look into the hanyou eyes. The sound of snow though told her that the boy was following faithfully behind. Oh, why did I have to go and ruin it? We were doing so well. She thought. .Suddenly, a hand wrapped grabbed around her palm, lacing its fingers in hers. Kagome looked up in surprise to see a blushing Inuyasha looking intently at the snow in front of him. But he did not drop her hand. Nor did he let go of it when they got to the snowmobiles. Instead, he climbed on first. Pulling Kagome up beside him, not looking her way but keeping his grip as the motors roared and they went speeding up the hill. And as the wind tore at her hair, Kagome stared down at his hand clasped in hers, her heart beating in her chest. Maybe it’s not so hopeless after all.
(A.N. . .. I know what your thinking the ending of the chapter sucked L. Hello again and guess what I’m not dead. And neither is this story. Now before you all gather a mob with pitch forks to torture me for: 1 not posting for so long and 2. Writing this ‘really not my best’ chapter, let me list these excu. . . Um reasons for these problems. One, I am getting my butt whipped by the American college education system. Really, really whipped. And two, I am sorry in case you could not have guessed these last two chapters have been a major writer block for me. I must say that when I thought “hey lets have them do a sledding day this was not the direction I was thinking, but thanks to you guys I got through it and am actually eager to continue to the next chapter. I want to thank Hubedihubbe for the email she sent me a few days ago. You guys owe her a big thanks for drop kicking my butt into gear and besides losing some hours of sleep I must say that finishing this chapter did not hurt to much. Just be gentle on me for I do know its not my best and I promise it will be better in the future.
Ok so next chapter, Ill admit the next chapter might be a little boring. Its all going to be about Inuyasha meeting some of Kagome’s family so not a lot of action but it will have a lot of inner though in Inuyasha point of view. We will get to know a little more on his past, explore his budding feelings for Kagome and play with his anxieties about not being good enough for her. But don’t worry I will be sure to add some humor, might jump back to check on the others in the feudal era, and at the end I will tack on something cute and fluffy as a reward for your patient with plot development. If you have any question you want asked about the story now would be a good time to ask and maybe I can weave the answers into the dialogue. In the mean time I do have some questions for you and I would appreciate all the feedback I can get. Here they are
1. Do you think that the relationship between kagome and Inuyasha is going to slow? I know that his is the second omg they kissed moment in the story which can make it a little bit boring but I was unsure of how to progress from their first kiss. They definitely are not at the make out stage and I did not feel like Inuyasha would be ready to face the big kiko question just yet (though he might be ready now.). I don’t know let me know what you think.
2. Am I still in character with Inuyasha? I don’t know near the end I was feeling like Inuyasha was getting a little OOC. Especially with all the blushing. Yeah I know I have him blushing every fifty seconds and I am working on it, but do you think I am making him to soft. Let me know and I will be sure to rive him back up lol.
3. And last but not least. What do you want to see happen? I got lots of ideas but what do you think. What task would you like to see the pair tackle next. Should other characters make an appearance? Her friends, family, Hojo (I don’t know if I could play him correctly but I would try.) Speak up for I am your writing slave. Let me know.
Well that’s it. I hope you liked this chapter and forgive me for taking so long to write. As always review review review.)