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The Garden at the End of the World by Natalia

The Garden at the End of the World

 

Hello! This is an oneshot I wrote for my Creative Writing class with my own original characters. It was well received. Blush.. so I decided to post it here and changed it a bit to suit Kagome and Sesshoumaru’s character more. The names are of course changed to suit the fic, hope I didn’t miss any details!

The idea was first born at the prompt challenge: Discovery on Dokuga but I was too late to post it so... and I used some parts of my other fic, Le Fleur de la Vie.

Anyway, Hope you enjoy it! Tell me what you think?

Warning: Au-ish, Er lots of fluff? OOC-ness?

 

The garden at the end of the world.

 

Love.

Emotions.

He was not an emotional being.

He did not know the notion of love.

Until he met her.

Armed with innocent smiles and sparkling eyes, she captured his heart.

Effortless and simple.

She didn’t even realize it then, yet she captured his cold heart and kept it tightly in her clutches.

Love is like a flower, a tender bud that can only grow when nurtured and bathed in affection. Only then can it bloom into a beautiful blossom that is love.

Ridiculous...

Yet, here he was, a creature of immense strength, forgotten by time, searching for a remedy to her mortality, wanting to keep her to himself.

He was trapped in her blue eyes and her essence. He, who had many names. Some called him, demon, some called him an angel. Other insisted he was an elf or high Fae. His long silver hair and pointed ears were always mistaken for Elven features. His strong, tall lean body were confused with Fae warriors and the claws and fangs he spotted were befuddled with demon features. The magic he wielded assimilated him with sorcery. In reality, he was a spirit of Nature, long forgotten, and Inu Youkai. Last of his kind...

In old times they were numerous, different in species and kind, roaming the lands freely, but the evolving humanity forgot about them, cursed and killed them for sport. Humanity had a gift for destruction and he despised them for it. He refused to bow down to them and fight the cowards arrived to slay him. It was her that was different. She was clumsy human and mortal and so sweet... he stood no chance.

Sometimes he wondered if meeting her was his sin, gift or curse. She never judged him for being different or looked at him with hate or fear.

Turning his vision around and leaving the memories aside, he spotted the valley hidden in clouds. He searched long for this place and at last, he arrived! Walking through clouds he pushed forward, not decreasing his steps. His heart beat quickly in his chest like a bird trapped in its cage.

Finally, he spotted the Tree. There it was, with golden trunk and emerald leaves and the long searched golden apples hanging on its gold branches.

“Who goes there?” asked a voice echoing from everywhere around him.

“What do you search for?” boomed another timbre next to his ears and he turned quick as a lighting to look around in wonder. Catlike eyes squinted and he freed his sword from its scabbard and assumed a fighting stance.

“Who are you? Where are you?“ he asked in a cold authoritative voice.

“Who are we?” asked a trio of female disembodied voices and laughed at his expression. “Who are you, to come in our home and disturb our peace and quiet?” asked the singular voice that still circled around him.

He was getting annoyed. He was used to seeing his opponent and not being at the mercy of some invisible foe.

“I am Sesshoumaru son of Touga Inu no Taisho, who are you?” he inquired, and the voice giggled.

“Shouldn’t you know? Since you searched for this place?” asked the more rough voice.

“I am looking for the apple granting immortality,” he spoke with conviction, gripping his sword tighter.

“Hm, Sesshoumaru son of Touga Inu no Taisho, as you, we have different names,” answered a voice that sounded the youngest amongst the trio.

“Some call us the muses,” answered one.

“Some call us the Hesperides Sisters,” giggled the second eerie voice.

“And some call us the Guardians of the Garden at the end of the worlds,” said the third voice then added in a more thunderous tone:

“Tell us Sesshoumaru son of Touga Inu no Taisho, why should we give you an apple that is so precious that only Gods of old ever saw one?”

“Garden at the end of the worlds?” he chuckled, thinking that it must be true since only after the traveled and searched everywhere in the world, did he find this place.

“I need the apple for my wife, for she is human, frail and mortal,” he answered with strong belief.

“Is she worthy? Are you worthy?” asked the youngest voice circling around him again and he ordered in an annoyed voice:

“Show yourself, quit jumping around and fooling my senses!”

“Ah ah ah, why would we do that?” wondered the second voice then her sister continued:

"The last one to come here killed our dragon protector and stole our apples. He too was a strong warrior.”

“I have no wish to kill anyone, I only require the Apple and will be on my way!” Sesshoumaru assured them sheathing his sword, willing to show his seriousness. He had honour and had respect for creatures such as he. Creatures of old and magic.

“We can see that you are serious, but what will you give us in return?” they asked in unison and Sesshoumaru hardened his face in wonder.

“I have not riches nor treasures, I only have myself and my wife,” he answered truthfully showing his bare hands.

“Will you pay with your life then? Or your sword? That we feel holds magic?” the trio asked and Sesshoumaru shook his head without pause.

“No, to both of them why would she need mortality without me next to her? I know she will not desire to spend her life in solitude and I wound not wish that upon her.”

“Very well, but what about the sword? We can feel your father’s power laced in the metal, why not it?” they asked and he again shook his head in denial.

“With this sword, I will protect her. It is the only one that can withhold my power,” he said touching the pommel of the sword and continued: “I cannot risk her safety and swore to protect her till my dying breath. I know the immortality fruit doesn’t give protection from violent death.”

“Well said, and you are right, the fruit gives vitality but does not bring one back from death if one is killed by mortal means,” spoke the oldest sounding voice with sadness laced in her tone.

“Think faster Sesshoumaru son of Touga Inu no Taisho, for you spent too much time searching...” added the second voice more serious this time. Gone was the playfulness of it.

“Come look, Sesshoumaru son of Touga Inu no Taisho” continued the voice and he took a few steps to his right where a small basin of water appeared. His heart skipped a beat when he saw his wife’s face reflected in the water’s surface. His wife’s, old, sad and wrinkled face. On her death bed.

“No!” he attempted to shout, but his voice shook with emotions caught in his throat and all it came was a soft whisper.

“No, no no!” he cried this time and looked at the tree. The apples hanging there were so tempting... only a few steps away...

Without further ado, he freed the sword from its scabbard and the voices screamed in terror. A vortex of energy surrounded the tree, but Sesshoumaru had no wish to approach the tree yet. Gathering his hair in his fist, he severed the mass of locks and presented them to the tree.

“I give this, my hair, symbol of my status, clan and power. Without it, a warrior of my clan is nothing in our customs, but without her, I Sesshoumaru need not eternity” he shouted. When the voices remained quiet he shook his fist and mumbled in despair:

“Please!”

As the word flew from his lips in an ardent prayer, for the first time in his life, a wave of energy swept across the garden. The clouds dissipated and in its place stood three alike sisters dressed in golden-yellow togas. All were dark haired and had green eyes with soft smiles upon their lips.

"You are worthy, all you had to do was ask and show your conviction," spoke on of the sisters taking a step toward him. In the cradle of her palm, she had a golden apple.

“What no one remembers is that we can see inside a soul and how worthy the person is,” spoke a second sister, this one taller than the first and gestured toward the clairvoyance water.

“Also each time everyone just doesn't ask, but demands or tries to take the apple with force. Hercules was one of them. You are different. We saw your journey, your struggles and the fact that it wasn’t greed that led you, but love,” finally approached him the third sister, and presented him a golden fibula.

“Take these gifts and hurry to your wife,” they spoke in unison with smiles widening. One blink and everything was gone. Sesshoumaru looked around at the empty clearing around himself. Gone were the tree and the sisters, only he stood with an apple and the fibula in his hands. Waking up from his reverie he remembered that he had a long journey ahead. The panic and fear grasped his heart in its clutches. Will he be too late? To find the apple only when his wife was dead? Hiding his treasured possession in his clothes he started running, intending to use his high speed and use his own energy to run to his beloved, only to stop in his steps when the house he built for his mate, appeared in front of his eyes. Elated and frantic, he ran toward the house and almost destroyed the door in his hurry to open it.

The house was dark and the air was almost stale, laced with a smell that he could only call: old and frail, known as Death. He swallowed harshly, for the first time in his long, immortal life being afraid. Afraid of what he may find inside. His heart became numb with pain and the time stopped. Seconds trickled in silence, like water between his fingers.

Remembering her face and regaining his wits, he shook his head harshly, fists tightened so hard that his knuckles went white and his claws pricked the skin of his palm. He had no time to lose! With wide and fast steps he walked inside their bedroom.

Here she was, laid on the bed with a young girl wiping her wrinkled forehead. Her hands were frail, fingers thin and covered in only skin that was almost transparent.

“Little bird,” he mumbled softly, but both females heard him and turned their heads toward the entrance. One slower than the other.

Sesshoumaru you came...” croaked the old woman, shaking hand raising toward him. In a step he was next to her bed, kneeling in front of her, his sword clanging on the floor. The young girl stepped aside, giving them space. He grasped the feeble appendage in his strong hands and kissed the cold skin.

“I told you I will always return. There is no other place I‘d rather be,” he spoke softly, wiping the tears from her eyes that still remained as beautiful as on the day he first time looked into them.

“I knew you would come... I always believed...” she spoke voice breaking with emotions and trying to tighten her hold on his hand.

“Nothing matter, except your presence... I... I wanted to spend my days with you, I waited, never once faltering in my faith in you, but this is enough...” she spoke touching his young looking cheek with reverent fingers, like being afraid to touch him. To believe that he was there. Touching his short hair, she gasped and tears bloomed in her eyes.

“Your hair,” she mumbled touching his chopped tresses but he shook his head, assuring her it didn’t matter.

“The fact that you came to guide me to my last journey is enough...” she intoned in a weak voice.

“No!” he showed her the apple. Her eyes sparkled and she touched the fruit with trembling fingers.

“Eat,” he nudged her and she looked at him with trepidation.

“For you, I will do it,” she said and opened her lips. Her first bite increased her strength and she ingested the apple in mere minutes.

He looked how her appearance changed with every second, skin becoming firm once again, hair regaining its black shining colour. When she looked like the day he first met her, he took her in his arms and spun her around, both smiling with tears in their eyes while their lips locked in a searing kiss. They both got lost in their world, embraced tightly and eyes in eyes when they were broken from their emotions by a crying sound. It was the young girl. She was looking at them and crying while smiling, hands covering her lips.

“She always believed and I thought... I.. but you’re real.. and...” she fell to the floor, taking a deep breath.

“This is Catarin, she took care of me and is like my daughter, without her I would’ve been lost,” his wife explained and he felt sad that the girl his wife loved so, will be lost to time. Inspecting her closer his heart skipped a bit. It was Rin, her reincarnation. Pain laced in his chest he felt suffocating. He remembered the day he lost her. He mourned her still, that’s why he searched for the fruit for Kagome. Feeling something stirring inside his breast pocket, he searched with his left hand and was shocked when he found another apple. It was next to the fibula he knew will belong to his future daughter, born from his now immortal wife and that will share the same gift. Seeing the other Apple, it was his wife who fell on the floor, mumbling her thanks to him and asking Catarin to eat it, knowing that they all had a long a bright future ahead.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

INUYASHA © Rumiko Takahashi/Shogakukan • Yomiuri TV • Sunrise 2000
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