Purple Haze: Definitive Edition by ruuruu-chan

Purple Haze: Definitive Edition Chapter 2

Purple Haze:

Definitive Edition

By: Ruuruu-chan

Disclaimers: I do not own InuYasha or any of the characters associated with it. I'm only borrowing the characters to amuse myself and hopefully others. ^__^


Ch. 2 Abrupt Malady


“Good afternoon Tokyo, we have updates from the following story of the deceased construction workers. Autopsies were performed to determine the cause of death and the results are inconclusive. The authorities are refusing to give further details on the matter, saying that it is under investigation,” the anchor explained.

She put her hand on her earpiece and her eyes got wide, “This just in, a whistleblower has come forward with new information about the autopsies. The construction workers died from a viral infection that is not known in the medical books and it is surmised that it was created in a lab and planted by terrorists. The disease works quickly and before death the victim’s eyes turn a purple hue. The whistleblower is calling it Purpuraetmortis Humi Virus or Purple Haze.”

Mrs. Higurashi changed the channel to another news network, hoping for more information. Souta was on his laptop checking the internet for stories regarding this viral disease. If it was airborne then it could mean disaster.

“We have a report,” a male reporter announced on the television. “There are three new cases of this new viral infection, Purple Haze. Seibo Hospital is currently housing these patients and it is unknown how this virus spreads. Every precaution is being considered as this story unfolds.”

Kagome shook her head, “This is just fear mongering at this point. Statistically new diseases appear all the time, we just don’t know it.”

“Shhh, quiet, I want to hear this…” Mrs. Higurashi trailed off.

“Look, you watch your silly news and I’ll get myself to work. C’mon Souta, we need to get going before we’re late again,” Kagome urged her brother out of the chair, even though he was completely engrossed in the latest stories about this viral infection.

Mrs. Higurashi bit at her nails with worry, “You both be careful out there.”

Kagome sighed and shut the front door. Souta seemed lost in thought as he climbed into the car. “What’s on your mind?” She asked as she started the vehicle.

“Those construction workers just died about a week ago and now there’s this viral disease going around. I’m wondering if those three patients are relatives or close friends to some of those workers. If those patients are, then that means this virus takes about a week to gestate inside the body, but then how long will it take before the virus kills them?” Souta surmised as he glanced out the window.

Kagome never thought about it like that, but if that were the case then perhaps the news wasn’t fear mongering after all. The only thing that could be done was to sit and wait to see if Souta was correct in his assumptions. Kagome could only hope that all this was nothing more than a fluke.

A week had passed and the Higurashi family was at home, watching the news together. Kagome didn’t make fun of her mother for watching it anymore because the reality hit and it hit hard. The patients at Seibo Hospital were indeed related to some of the construction workers, and more were soon to follow. The original three patients passed away within five days of arriving at the medical center and it was deduced that the disease was fast acting and it killed rapidly.

“We are in a state of emergency. I repeat, we are in a state of emergency,” the anchor declared. “We are still unsure if the Purple Haze Virus is airborne, but what we do know is that the number of those infected has risen drastically. All businesses that are not considered essential will be closed by 5 pm tonight and remain so until further notice. These will also include restaurants and schools. We encourage all citizens to practice self-quarantine, good hygiene and safe social distances. If you must go out then please wear gloves and a mask and do not touch your face. For more information go to our news website at…”

Kagome got up from the couch and wandered into the kitchen, “So how long should we stay at home? Do we have enough groceries?” She started to go through the cupboards and began to take inventory.

Kagome’s mother followed her into the kitchen, “We should be fine for a little while. I went out a few days ago to get some things to hold us over. I had a feeling that something like this would happen with how the news has been going on and on about it.”

Kagome closed the refrigerator, “I’m sorry mom for giving you a hard time about watching the news all the time. I know you’re only watching out for us.” Kagome gave her mom a hug. “Hey mom, are you crying?” Kagome asked as she felt her shoulder get wet.

Mrs. Higurashi released her daughter and dabbed at her eyes, “No actually. They just got watery suddenly. Maybe there’s something in my eye.”

Souta heard his mother and immediately went into the kitchen. He had his mom sit down on a chair as he took a flashlight to check her eyes. He looked for several minutes, but saw nothing.

“I think you might have dry eyes, so you’re producing more tears than usual. It could be allergies,” Souta explained, happy with his diagnosis.

Mrs. Higurashi smiled with relief. When she tried to get out of the chair a sudden wave of light-headedness took over her and made her sit down again.

“Are you alright mom?” Kagome asked.

Mrs. Higurashi nodded, “I just got a little dizzy, but I think I’ll be alright. It’s these headaches that are getting to me.”

“I think you should go lay down mom. You’ve been having these headaches often lately. Are you sure you don’t need a doctor?” Souta questioned as he helped his mom out of the chair. Souta assisted Mrs. Higurashi to her bed and laid her down. He shifted the blankets to cover his mother from the shoulders down.

“It’s nothing to worry about Dear. These migraines have been coming and going for the last week and I think it’s due to all this stress. I really should listen to Kagome and stop watching so much news and learn to relax,” Mrs. Higurashi explained with a contented sigh. She felt better once she lay down.

Kagome poked her head from the doorway and assured her mother, “Don’t worry about dinner tonight, I’ll do it. Just rest for now and I’ll come check on you later.”

“How did I end up with such wonderful children?” their mother said with pride in her voice.

Kagome gave a solemn smile, “You have such wonderful kids because we were raised by an amazing mother. We love you Mom.” Souta nodded in agreement.

Souta and Kagome left their mother to rest and they made a bee-line to the kitchen to get dinner started. “I hope this outbreak won’t last for too much longer. Some people are speculating that it is nothing more than a chemical that got out of hand in that area of the city. That is what’s causing all these weird deaths,” Kagome disclosed to her brother.

Souta scoffed, “You know that isn’t what it is. You probably read that from a propaganda website without knowing it. I don’t think this virus has anything to do with chemicals or from terrorists for that matter. Heck, it might not even be made by humans.”

Kagome stopped chopping the vegetables, “What are you suggesting?”

“This virus isn’t normal. It doesn’t act like any virus I have studied before and no one can determine how it was created other than where those workers died. I think all the answers are there,” Souta imparted with such certainty. “You know this isn’t normal and you have consistently been making an excuse to normalize everything around you that you have gone blind to reality.”

“What do you mean Souta? You’re not making any sense,” She said with a side-ways glance.

Souta sighed, “I’m talking about demons. We both know they exist and you have the ability to see them, but you blatantly force yourself not to.”

Kagome’s lip quivered. It’s not like she was forcing herself to stop seeing demons. Ever since she gave away part of her soul, her abilities had weakened considerably. Then again, ever since she came back to her time she has not tried to locate them. Perhaps she was running from the past and avoiding anything that could remind her of that, and that was more than likely the reality that Souta was talking about.

“Are you saying that demons are the ones responsible for this? That this virus was meant for humans?” Kagome questioned, hoping she understood him.

Souta sounded relieved, “Yes, that is exactly what I’m trying to say. Who else could create something so elusive? Humans may have technology, but not something as advanced as creating a virus of this magnitude. I was trying to research the components, but there isn’t much out there. I could gain a better understanding of it if I was up, close, and personal.”

“Maybe we can go check out ground zero and get a sample,” Kagome mentioned as she put the vegetables in the skillet.

Souta looked excited, “Are you serious!?”

“Yes, I’m serious, but we’ll have to go under the cover of darkness. I’m sure there are still some patrols in that area, considering that it was a crime scene not that long ago,” Kagome explained as she fed Souta’s eagerness.

If there was anything demonic, she was wondering if she would be able to sense it. It had been so long since she used her miko powers that she didn’t know if she had them anymore. She had no connections with anything that could be considered demonic or supernatural since she came back for the last time from Feudal Japan. Kagome felt like she still belonged to another world, which was far beyond her reach.

Yet, here she was in the present and she discovered the myths and legends that were built around her and the group that fought alongside her. In these stories she was called a priestess or a goddess and InuYasha was her loyal servant that went back and forth between the realms. The story was a tragedy that led to the woman’s death because her servant betrayed her. Even in this reality Kagome was mocked by tales of the past that were conjured up in forms of stories.

There were times when Kagome still caught herself at the brim of the well, looking down, hoping and praying she would see that familiar light that would take her to the past once more. On one occasion she jumped down the well for the sake of trying and was met with a grimy bottom filled with bones. She tried digging to the other side, only to be met with bloody fingers and a broken heart. Kagome went as far as recruiting her grandfather to assist her in trying to open the door to her freedom, but with his death he was gone and so was her dream.

“Hey Sis, you’re about to burn dinner,” Souta warned as he poked his sister’s shoulder.

Kagome jumped back to the current situation and swiftly turned the fish, barely saving it. She gave a nervous laugh, “Sorry about that.”

“It looks like dinner is almost ready. The table is already set so I’ll go get mom up,” Souta explained as he made his way down the hall.

Mere moments passed and Souta could be heard yelling from the bedroom. “Kagome! Kagome, come quick! It’s mom!”

Kagome’s heart raced as she bounded to her mother’s bedroom and was met with a gruesome scene. Mrs. Higurashi was convulsing on her bed, her face covered in blood.

Souta looked at his sister with a tear streaked face, “Call the hospital!”

Kagome immediately picked up the phone and dialed 119 for emergency services. The operator answered, “119, what’s your emergency?”

“M-My mom! She’s convulsing and there’s blood everywhere! Please send someone quick,” She told the receptionist with haste.

“What’s the address?” the lady on the phone asked.

“It’s the Higurashi Shrine! Please just hurry!” Kagome cried into the receiver as the operator was sending dispatch to the location.

“Please stay calm mam’, ambulance and police are on the way. Please stay on the line until they get there,” the lady said in a calm, even tone.

The time seemed to pass at a snail’s pace as Kagome was waiting for help to arrive. She heard the sirens and then saw the lights from the window.

“They’re here,” Kagome said and abruptly hung up the phone without waiting for a response. The emergency team came into the house and began to work on Mrs. Higurashi.

“She’s going into cardiac arrest!” the EMT announced as he prepared the artificial external defibrillator.

Kagome and Souta were escorted out of the room before they could witness how the device would be used on their mother. The waiting was unbearable and the reality came crashing down when they saw their mom coming out of the room on a stretcher and with a breathing apparatus attached to her face.

“Souta, get in the ambulance with mom. I’m taking the car and I’ll meet you there,” Kagome ordered as she forced her brother with their mom. It didn’t take much convincing at all for Souta to do as he was told and within moments they were on their way to the hospital.

Soon they arrived at the Tokyo Metropolitan Matsuzawa Hospital where their mother would be treated in intensive care. The siblings were instructed to remain in the waiting room until a doctor was available. Kagome couldn’t help but pace as time passed until finally a doctor arrived.

Kagome wrung her hands anxiously, “How is she?”

The doctor pushed his glasses up the bridge of his nose before he began, “Allow me to be frank, your mother is in critical condition, but she is stable for the moment. She suffered from an epileptic convulsion caused by an abnormal hyper synchronous neuronal activity within the brain.”

“What in the Hell is that?” Kagome’s anger flared.

Souta intervened, “Kagome, what he is saying is that there is something wrong inside of her head. It could be caused by too much neural activity or perhaps a tumor.”

The doctor looked impressed with the young man as he explained the terms in a more simplistic form for Kagome.

“That is correct, but this isn’t what caused it. Your mother has Purpuraetmortis Humi Virus, also known as PHV to the clinics. You probably know it as Purple Haze from the media,” he specified.

The doctor cleared his throat as he continued, “There is no known cure for this virus and we have not found a way to slow it down. All we know is that there is an incubation period of about a week and then the disease kills you, and the time for that varies from person to person. We surmise that the time differentiates depending on the individual’s immune system. So far there is no one who has survived PHV and unfortunately, I fear that your mother will pass away as well.”

Kagome’s face paled and she nearly collapsed on the floor. Souta caught her and led his sister to a chair. “I don’t want to hear anymore,” she sobbed. “I just want to see my mom…”

“We can’t allow you to do that. We don’t know if this virus is airborne or if it transitions from person to person. She’s in an isolated unit so that the disease doesn’t spread,” the doctor tried to explain the situation as clearly as possible.

Kagome was not going to back down without a fight. “I don’t care what you say about isolation. We were exposed to her in the house so it shouldn’t matter now. We just want to see her if she really is going to die,” Kagome pontificated this in a dogmatic way, her body shaking with anger and frustration.

The doctor fiddled with his name tag, getting tired of the situation. Souta noticed that the doctor had dark circles under his eyes. The staff at the hospitals were probably working double to triple shifts to meet the demands of the patients overflowing in the emergency rooms. Souta understood why they couldn’t be in the same room as their mother, but they should have the right to see her.

The brother read the nametag of the doctor and decided to use his name to gain some sort of empathy for the current situation. “Doctor Miyazaki, can we at least see our mother? Isn’t there a way for us to talk with her? She’s the only family we have left, so please understand,” Souta tried to reason with the man.

Doctor Miyazaki finally conceded and said, “You can see her through the glass and we have a phone system so that you can speak with one another. Unfortunately, I can’t allow you to touch her because the spreading of this disease is occurring too easily.”

Kagome wasn’t satisfied, but the look her brother gave her was one of sadness and determination. He was determined to allow his sister one last chance to see their mother at the very least. If they kept arguing then their chance could be taken away from them. Kagome relinquished her anger and nodded her understanding.

They were led to the isolation rooms and through a window the Higurashi children looked in on their mother. There were tubes connected all around Mrs. Higurashi’s body and they were attached to beeping machines that proved she was still alive. The doctor explained that their mother had to be put on morphine for the pain and that is why she slept so soundly.

Kagome put her hand on the glass and whispered, “I’m here for you Mom.”

Kagome eventually fell asleep in a chair while watching over her mother. Morning arrived and the rays of the sun shined through the window panes, jolting Kagome back to reality. Above her loomed Souta and he had a concerned smile on his face.

“What are you so happy about?” Kagome was not in the mood.

“I spoke with Doctor Miyazaki last night and we came to an agreement,” Souta explained.

Kagome sat up, “What do you mean?”

Souta pointed to a glass room connected to their mother’s isolation unit, “You see that room there? That is the sanitation room that doctors have to go through before they can enter isolation rooms. They wear a special suit that will keep out germs and viruses. We can see mom if we put those on.”

Kagome’s heart lifted. A nurse showed the two siblings how to put the suits on and what the process was to enter the room. They were covered from head to toe in processed plastic, but at least they had the opportunity to see their mother.

Kagome grabbed her mother’s hand and was surprised when she felt her mother grip back. The sclera of Mrs. Higurashi’s eyes were purple instead of white and this worried Kagome further.

“Morning Honey,” Mrs. Higurashi squeaked out.

Kagome gulped down, “Hi Mom. Are you feeling better?” She knew it was a stupid question, but she didn’t know what else to say.

Mrs. Higurashi smiled weakly, “I feel alright, but I can barely see you. All I can see are hues of purple.”

“Mom?” Souta said softly.

“Oh Souta, you’re here too,” their mother said in a tired voice.

Souta nodded, “Of course I am. Where else would I be?” He glanced at his sister and then back to their mom, “The doctor is going to take you to get an MRI soon, but we’ll be here for you every step of the way.” Souta wanted to know what was going on with his mother regarding her migraines. Any information and action was better than doing nothing at all.

Mrs. Higurashi was escorted to the MRI room where the procedure would begin. As the brother and sister waited, Souta expounded some useless information, “A head MRI is a noninvasive imaging test that creates detailed pictures of your brain and surrounding tissues. An MRI allows doctors to see inside your brain to check for diseases or injuries without having to go through surgery.”

Kagome knew her brother was just trying to be helpful, but she didn’t want a medical lecture. They were both hoping that something could be done to save their mother’s life, but in the back of their minds they knew their mother would die. The waiting was excruciating, but the procedure finally ended and their mother was taken back into isolation.

It wasn’t too much longer when Doctor Miyazaki came back with the results from the test. The images of the brain were put on an x-ray illuminator so that they could all see what was going on.

Doctor Miyazaki pointed to one image and said, “As you can see her brain is riddled with tumors, but these tumors are not like anything I’ve seen before. These tumors are almost like air pockets that are dissolving the tissue inside. My guess is that tumors are causing blindness as well.”

“What can you tell us about the blood on her face? The blood was coming from her eyes, ears, nose and mouth,” Souta questioned.

“There is too much pressure built up in her head and there was nowhere for the blood to escape except through the orifices on her face. This would explain the continuous headaches and bouts of light-headedness,” Doctor Miyazaki uttered in a now worried tone. “I’m afraid the only thing we can do is to keep medicating her to keep the pain at bay.”

Kagome held back a sob as tears streaked her face. The grief she felt was almost more than she could bear.

Several days passed and Mrs. Higurashi was in and out of consciousness. She was in pain and became delusional of the world around her, even as she became completely blind. The final step was losing her eyesight and after that point she faded away into nothingness and died. Souta and Kagome had a proper funeral for their mother and she was laid to rest next to their grandfather. After that day they were lost and all they had were each other to embrace to go into the future of the unknown.


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