Increase Text Size Decrease Text Size Divider Print This Chapter Divider

His Caged Bird by Utena

A game of hide and seek

His Caged Bird
By Utena














The sound of her alarm blaring caused the young woman to groan, cracking open one eye, and reached out to shut the alarm off. Part of her wished she could just stay in bed all day, but the other part of her told her she could not be late for work. She only had two more days of work and then – only then – would she have that much needed day off.

It was that thought that pushed her out of bed and sent her straight into the bathroom for her morning routine of brushing her teeth and shower. It had only taken her half an hour before she was now in her kitchen making herself a quick cup of coffee. Normally, she would just skip the coffee at home and head straight for the nearest café shop, but she wanted to be at work early and hope that they let her clock in. She also hoped that today would be less busy than it had been during the weekend.

Settling herself at her kitchen table, she turned on the television. There on the screen was an image of Inuyasha discussing some sort of new break-through project he had been part of it.

Kagome rolled her eyes. Inuyasha was always so full of himself ever since they had been friends as kids. He always tried to be the most important in the group believing that since he was the son of a great and terrible daiyoukai named Touga Taisho that everyone should bow down to him. Unfortunately for Inuyasha, his older half-brother, Sesshomaru, always seemed to be around to knock him down a peg.

Kagome’s eyes closed and a sad sigh escaped her lips. Sesshomaru. He had once been the great love of her life. The one she had thought she would spend the rest of her life with, but the moment he had gotten his claws on her, he became too possessive of her to the point she felt like nothing more than a caged pet. No matter how much she tried to struggle or express such displeasure at the treatment, his hold upon her tightened. This was not the relationship she envisioned between them and plotted to find a means of escape.

And that escape came – with help from both Miroku and Sango. The two had seen how she had begun to wilt and offered her a way out. They had told her that Sesshomaru had been given a directive to see to several contracts by his father. This meant he would be out of the country for more than a month. This meant that prior to his departure, she would have to pretend as she so often did. She knew this would be a gamble because Sesshomaru often made her go along with him, but this time he had been told that taking her would be a distraction to him. With no choice on the matter, he left her at their expensive apartment in the city and left, promising to call her the moment he arrived at his destination.

The moment he was gone, Kagome began packing, grabbing everything she possibly could and toss it into her bags. Miroku and Sango came quickly and gave her a ticket out of Tokyo and papers with a new name.

“We will make sure to keep you updated the moment he finds out you are gone,” Sango promised, hugging her. “I will also make sure that Higurashi Kagome leaves a paper trail elsewhere and Chiba Usagi is happily ensconced somewhere else.”

“Thank you both,” she whispered hugging them both one more time before disappearing from the apartment forever.

Kagome shook her head, bringing herself back to the present. Here she was now living her life without being under Sesshomaru’s thumb. In the beginning, it had taken her some time to get used to her name and even more living by herself once more. She was used to a bigger bed and feeling Sesshomaru’s body pressed intimately next to hers.

Kagome grabbed the remote and turned off her television. A quick glance at the clock told her it was time to leave. She grabbed her purse and headed out the door, leaving behind her cell phone that had begun to light up.











Kagome leaned against the wall and wiped her brow with the back of her hand. She was exhausted from the rush that had happened consecutively one right after another. It had never been this busy and she could only surmise that there had been some sort of convention in this town. Still, her working today had been worth it.

“Usa-chan!” the auburn-haired ookami called out waving her hands trying to gain her attention. “Naraku-sama told me to tell you that all you need to do is clean up tables nine and six and you can go home.”

“Ah thank you, Ayame-chan,” Kagome happily said grabbing the cleaning materials necessary. She could not wait to get out of her that she scurried toward the tables, grabbing dishes and carefully placing them in the dish box. She took them quickly to the back for Ginta to clean. “Here are the rest of the dishes from out there.”

Ginta sighed looking at the last remaining dishes she had placed to the side of him. “Usa-chan, please tell me the rush is over.”

Kagome chuckled and nodded her head. “It is. The dining room is pretty deserted right now and the late afternoon and evening shift should start coming in soon.”

“Thank Kami,” Ginta murmured as he set about finishing up the cleaning.

Kagome headed back out and started finishing up her duties. Once done, she headed to the back and told Ayame she would see her tomorrow morning and grabbed her purse. As she stepped out of the restaurant, she considered grabbing herself something to eat but she was too exhausted to really wait for the food. Instead, she compromised that a microwavable meal would be the best for the evening. Plus, maybe a romantic comedy would be what she needed to relax to.

As she made her way toward her apartment building, Kagome drank in the sites around her. She had never really taken a moment to appreciate the small town she had been living in for two years. The place was quaint, and she could hear the ocean not so far away that she promised herself she would go to the beach on her day off. She had not been to the beach since a month ago and she needed a tan. A nice tan. She was beginning to look like a ghost.

Her apartment building came into view and Kagome paused only briefly to retrieve the keys from her purse. Making her way inside, she paused to push her key into the hole, twisting it to unlock the door. Opening the door, she turned on the hall light and removed her shoes, placing them off to the side and headed inward. There on the table, she found her cell phone blinking. She had missed over ninety calls since she had gone into work. For a moment, she wondered if she should listen to the voice messages, but the thought was pushed to aside when she decided to make tea first.

Kagome grabbed her tea kettle from the cabinet, poured the water, and set the kettle to boil on the stove. It was at that moment her cell phone began to ring causing her to sigh. She hoped it did not work. She really did not want to have to go back there tonight. She had plans and that was not one of them. She marched over to the table to retrieve her cell but the number coming up did not match the number for work.

Pressing the answer key on her phone, she placed the phone up to her ear and spoke, “Moshi Moshi.”

“Kagome!” the voice on the other side of the call seemed relieved to hear her. “I have been trying to get you all day!”

“Wait, Sango what – “Kagome’s voice held surprise to hear her friend after all this time. They had not spoken in over a year. So why was she calling?

Sango cut her off, but her voice still held concern and fear lacing each word she spoke in the receiver, “Look, I can’t make this long because Miroku and I bought this burner phone for this. We have been doing everything possible to throw you off your scent, but we think he found out somehow. He had been acting suspiciously lately. Miroku has been trying to investigate but all he has been met with is a wall of silence.”

“Woah there,” Kagome panicked. “But how? I am under another name.”

“That’s the thing,” Sango sighed. “We think someone spotted you and reported back to him.”

There was a pause between them as Kagome was drinking in everything her friend had said.

“Kagome, he isn’t here in Tokyo,” Sango supplied breaking the silence between them. “Inuyasha doesn’t even know where he is and both and Miroku are trying to locate him but have been having no luck whatsoever. We think – we think he is there watching and waiting for his moment to strike.”

“Oh Kami!” Kagome groaned moving to her window to glance out at the dimly lit streets. She drew away and pulled the curtains closed making sure there was no way anyone could see into her apartment.

“I have to go, Kagome!” Sango said suddenly. “I will try to get in touch with you tomorrow!”

Glancing down at her cell phone, Kagome warily looked at the missed calls and messages waiting for her. She was hesitant to hear them, but she had to know…had to see if he had found her number. She dialed her voice mail and placed it to her ear to hear:

“Kagome?” the voice on the other end had purred her name sending Kagome to stiffen in fear. The realization of being found by Sesshomaru hitting her harder than she had expected. All the work…all the time she had spent being free as a bird now gone in a matter of an earth-shattering moment. “Are you still sleeping, or have you left for work? I suppose I could go see if you are, Usa-chan.”

The phone dropped from her hand and Kagome backed away, staring at it as if it had been a snake that bit her. The sound of the kettle whistling drew her back to reality and she raced back to the kitchen to remove her kettle from the stove and placed in two packets of tea inside. What was she going to do? Now, she knew she could not move or disappear because she knew Sesshomaru was somewhere out there waiting for her to slip up.

How? She wanted to know. How had he found her? Had she been so careless? Had one of his workers come into town and seen her?

For Kagome, it could only be the answer – someone had seen her and reported back to him. It was the only way he would have found her. She had taken such extra care in making sure that she had changed. She had cut her hair and even added highlights to appear differently. She had even gone as far as to break contact with her family to ensure that he would be unable to find her and she thought she hated doing so, it had been for the best. Her family had been left in the dark and unable to bend to Sesshomaru’s will.

Kagome looked down at the kettle in front of her. She no longer wanted the tea nor the movie she had hoped to watch upon her arrival home. Placing it in the sink, she promised herself that she would clean it out before she headed into work. She headed toward the bathroom to change out of her clothes and into her pajamas. She was tired and now with this unsettling news of Sesshomaru lurking, made her on edge.

Tomorrow, she had decided, tomorrow she could decide the next course of action.











The next morning found Kagome having not a perchance of sleep. She had spent most of the night in an internal struggle between her heart and mind with neither side having won. And what did not help the matters was the little voice in her head that had once encouraged her to flee the gilded cage Sesshomaru had placed her in was now taunting her.

You knew he would find you – eventually,” the little voice began. “You relaxed your guard for too long allowing him just enough time to find you.”

Had I done that? She wondered chewing on the bottom of her lip in thought. Had I become so comfortable in the new life that I had believed I was safe and out of his reach?

Kagome frowned uncertainly.

Try to deny it all you want but you still love him even now,” the voice continued taunting. “He is the reason you never dated as Usagi because no man nor youkai could measure up to him.”

“Shut up!” She hissed trying to block out the voice. She did not want to hear any of it.

He gave it all to you – affection, devotion, and desire that often left you breathless and wanting more,” the voice replied. “He everything you wanted in your dream guy.”

It had been true; she knew unable to deny it. Sesshomaru had been the dream guy she had been dreaming of ever since she had been a pre-teen, but how was she to know that he was too possessive and demanding. He rarely - if ever. – let her leave his sight. It had been the reason she had fled in the first place and it was the reason she continued to hide. She did not want to go back to that life. Yet, she still wanted him. She still loved him more than anything.

So, torn between your heart and mind,” the voice chuckled. “Which will you choose to listen to in the end?”

Kagome pushed the little voice away refusing to hear anything further that would force her to think about Sesshomaru. She just wanted to go into work and come back home. She would think about all this later when her mind and heart were too tired to continue the argument between them. Dressed and ready, she headed out the door locking it behind her as she made her way down the hall and steps and into the quiet morning of the town.











Work had been extra busy today. Kagome was exhausted as she made her way once more back to her apartment. It seemed as if the entire country of Japan had converged upon her town and decided that now was the best time to hold conventions and conferences galore. She had never seen so many businessmen and women flock to the café as they had. As she had made her rounds around tables and chatted with several of her clients offering them places that should be visited while staying here. Most of them had decided to take up her suggestion and had come back later to thank her. It had made her day go faster than she had expected.

Now that she was off, Kagome had halted her progression home to grab a few groceries. Tonight, she was going to have a nice little microwavable dinner and watch that movie she never had a chance to watch last night. As she made her way through the evening streets, Kagome could not help but place herself on guard more than ever. She knew Sesshomaru was out there. She could almost feel him.

Kagome wrapped her arms around herself and sighed upon seeing her building come into view. Her footsteps quickened into the building and up the stairs, but they halted upon seeing one of the older women that ran the office on the first floor. Had they come for rent earlier than expected?

Dammit, thought Kagome despairingly, I do not have my check yet.

“Hina-baasan,” she whispered softly, “I am not late with the rent, am I?”

“Ah Usa-chan,” the older woman turned and greeted her with a warm smile. “Actually, your rent was already paid. I was given the money early this afternoon when the movers came to take your stuff.”

The movers? But she did no – Sesshomaru!

“Do you mind if I make sure everything has been nothing left by them?” She asked, hoping that what she was hearing was nothing more than a mistake and that it had been someone else who had moved.

“Of course, dear,” Hina replied making her way toward the stairs. “Make sure that you leave the keys to the apartment in the office once you are finished.”

If Kagome had heard, she said nothing as she unlocked her door and threw open her door. The place was empty. All her furniture gone from the place. Kagome dropped her bag and groaned. So lost in her despair that she did not see the figure off the side as it slid from the shadows to stand behind her. A stripped hand rose and covered her mouth. Kagome struggled against the figure, but a small number of his toxic claws caused Kagome to knock out quickly and slump against her captor.

Sesshomaru smirked wickedly, catching the girl easily and lifting her up in his arms. He carried her down the stairs and out to the waiting limo. Jaken quickly opened the door and bowed his head.

“Sesshomaru-sama,” he greeted.

The young lord of the West paused for a moment to toss him Kagome’s keys. “Take those to the office quickly,” Sesshomaru ordered as he set his precious cargo into the backseat and slid in. He finally had her back where she belonged and now, he waited for her to awaken.











Kagome groaned. Her head and muscles ached badly. What had she eaten last night that had made her so sick? Was it that microwavable dinner she picked up? Or had the tea she made tasted weird? And why could she not remember any of it? She moved her arm to push herself up out of bed but as her hand moved away from her “pillow”, she heard a chuckle from above that caused her to stiffen.

No!

It could not be!

Quickly, she pushed herself up and moved away from the figure whose lap her head had been resting on.

“Sesshomaru,” she whispered groggily. Her blue eyes moving swiftly over the darkened limo.

“My heart,” he purred reaching for her and pulling her back towards him, “how I have searched the world for you.”

“You did?” She gulped and tried to move away again but he was much stronger than she.

“Of course, I did,” he answered. He reached a clawed hand to run the tips lovingly through the dark mane of his Kagome. “Imagine my surprise when I tried calling our home and no one answered. Then, coming home to find that my little bird had escaped her cage.” There was a pause as his clawed fingertips skated down the delicate skin of her check until his fingertips curled around her chin. “Why?”

Kagome could hear the hurt in his tone as if he were trying to understand her reasoning. He was a youkai, she had to remind herself, and their version of love was somewhat different than that of humans.

“I am not a possession you can lock away, Sesshou,” stated Kagome lifting her blue eyes to meet the amber-colored of his. “Unlike female youkai, human females are not meant to be locked away like precious treasures coveted by dragons. We want to be treated as equals. We crave touch and treatment differently. I was wilting under your treatment and I tried so hard to tell you this, but you would never listen to my concerns.”

Sesshomaru remained silent, processing the information she had given him.

“I never meant to leave like that, Sesshou,” Kagome spoke again, finding a small amount of courage to lift her hand and place it against his, “but I just could not do it anymore.”

“And yet you did,” he accused. “Did you think I would not search the world for you?”

“You are not listening,” she argued back trying desperately to get him to understand that he was smothering her and keeping her locked up was not romantic in any sense. “I want to be your equal partner, Sesshou, not your prisoner! If you take me back, I will only find a way to run again!”

And in that moment, Sesshomaru seemed to be struggling to understand why she would want to run away again – especially from him. He knew that he could not lose her again. He spent these two years without her, and it had felt like part of his soul had been ripped from his body, and now with her here beside him that feeling had disappeared.

“If I change the way I have treated you,” he began.

“I would not feel like running from you again,” she finished for him looking at him with hope in those sapphire blue eyes of hers. “Sesshou, let me show you what it feels to love…to be equal in this relationship, please.”

He knew he could not deny her. If he allowed her to show him, then she would be his forever and for him, it would be worth it.

“Show me,” he whispered softly.

Kagome smiled feeling that she had finally broken through to him. It was all she could ask for. Right now, she would take the small steps to repair the damage done between them and show him what love could really be like.


Chapter End
 

INUYASHA © Rumiko Takahashi/Shogakukan • Yomiuri TV • Sunrise 2000
No money is being made from the creation or viewing of content on this site, which is strictly for personal, non-commercial use, in accordance with the copyright.