“Boss!” The strained yell echoed through the halls of the building, though Sesshomaru would’ve heard the man regardless of his raised voice. “Boss! They took her!”
The sound of several men running down the hall toward his office had him slightly alarmed, though he’d never allow his men to see it. Rising from the large, leather chair he was seated in, he walked calmly to his door, sliding it open just as one of his men had lifted his fist to pound on it.
“What is the meaning of this?” Sesshomaru demanded.
He didn’t care for disorderliness, so having panicked members of his syndicate running and screaming through his halls didn’t fit his style.
“They took her, boss,” the man at the front – Oda – said, his voice much lower now.
As soon as the words left Oda’s mouth, the entire flock of men in the hallway dropped into a kneel in unison.
“Please, forgive us!” Oda, apparently the groups’ spokesman, begged. “We were ambushed and outnumbered.”
Sesshomaru had an inkling as to what they were referring to, but he needed it to be said. Otherwise, he’d be going on a rampage through the city needlessly.
“Oda,” Sesshomaru prompted quietly, his voice a soft, though threatening tenor. “Who has taken whom?”
The man glanced up from his prostration, looking into the narrowed amber eyes of his leader, and swallowed nervously. A fine tremor began in his body.
“The leader of Onigumo-kai has taken your mate,” he admitted, his voice thin and high-pitched with his nerves. “Naraku has Kagome.”
Sesshomaru’s eyes flashed a brilliant crimson in his anger, and Oda squeaked, ducking his head.
“Gather everyone in the city,” Sesshomaru commanded through a growl, walking with purpose through his stooping men – each backing out of the way fluidly. “We leave in five.”
Running his claws languidly through long, silver hair, Sesshomaru peered through the window of his sleek, black town car. The building he stopped in front of was unassuming. Drab, gray concrete, and corporate. Cold.
He could sense his mate within, and his blood boiled in his veins, barely concealed rage and tension coiling his muscles.
He was desperate to move, anxious to break down the doors and destroy any in his path to obtain his mate. Her face sprang to his mind, her carefree smile, jovial blue eyes. She had always kept him grounded, remaining by his side throughout everything. She’d helped him navigate the changing times, ensuring he made the moves that would leave him on top.
She was everything to him, and he wouldn’t leave this place without securing her. Every last person that got in his way had better be prepared to die because he would slaughter them all. Naraku overstepped this time. This day would be his last.
“Has everyone arrived?” He asked, meeting a pair of violet eyes in the rearview mirror.
Miroku nodded, glanced at Inuyasha, who sat in the passenger seat and back at Sesshomaru, who sat alone in the back.
“Let’s get these fuckers,” Inuyasha said, opening the door and stepping out.
Sesshomaru brushed his hair up high onto his head, creating a silver loop as he stepped from the car to stand beside his brother. A growl slipped past his lips as he glared at the building’s façade.
I’m coming for you, mate.
As a horde of other men gathered around him, Inuyasha nodded, giving the signal to storm the place. Like floodgates opening, the men flew forward with angry cries, busting through the doors and windows of the ground floor.
The sounds of fighting, yells, grunts, and breaking bones rang out. Gunfire filtered through silencers ricocheted throughout the building, tearing holes into bodies and walls.
Sesshomaru paid no mind to any of it, strolling forward without care toward his mate’s aura. Following her soothing essence up two flights of stairs and down a long, suspiciously empty hall, he summoned his whip and lashed toward the double doors at the end.
Splintering, they shattered into several broken pieces, and he stepped over them and into the room.
“Mate,” he said calmly, his eyes finding her immediately. “Are you well?”
On the surface, he remained apathetic, but within, he was fuming. Kagome was bound to a chair by ankles and wrists, gagged with what appeared to be a dirty rag and blindfolded. She sat in the middle of the room, surrounded by several weapon-toting gangsters, and at the back of the room was Naraku, a self-satisfied smirk on his face.
Kagome’s muffled reply met with an elbow in the stomach, and she grunted in pain, gasping to catch her breath.
Sesshomaru’s reaction was instantaneous.
His whip flashed around the room, cutting men in half, burning flesh, and ending lives with a single slice. Heads rolled, limbs were severed, and entrails littered the floor, filling his nose with a nostalgic scent he hadn’t known in some time.
Blood sprayed over Kagome, and while Sesshomaru was sorry for it, he couldn’t help thinking that she’d always been beautiful in red.
“You were woefully unprepared it would seem,” Sesshomaru said as he stepped over body parts and spilled blood. Retracting his whip, he eyed the rival leader. “You will pay for what you’ve done to my mate this day, Naraku.”
“I should’ve killed the bitch while I had the chance,” he hissed, though his scent betrayed his fear.
“Sesshomaru!” Inuyasha called from somewhere behind him as he pushed into the room. “Woah…”
“He went ballistic,” Miroku whispered. “Haven’t seen a mess like this in… years.”
“Get her out of here,” Sesshomaru commanded, his eyes not leaving his nemesis.
Beside him, Kagome began to protest, struggling against her bindings. Inuyasha rushed up, using his claws to cut through her ties while Miroku removed her blindfold and gag. Making a face, she stood, her eyes finding her mate.
“I’m not leaving you.”
“You will do as I say, Kagome. Leave.”
“Not happening, Sesshomaru,” she growled impressively, jerking her arm out of Inuyasha’s hand as he tried to pull her away. “I’ve been by your side since the beginning. I won’t leave you now, and there’s nothing you can do or say to convince me otherwise. Got it?”
Unconcerned, he took his eyes from Naraku to glance at his willful mate, a smirk curling his lips.
“Are you well?” He asked her again, and she blinked, pausing a moment to assess herself.
“A little sore,” she admitted, rubbing her raw wrists. “But unharmed.”
“Very well,” he gave her a curt nod then redirected his attention back to a cowering Naraku.
“That won’t save you today, I’m afraid. You’ve overstepped your bounds by taking what’s mine. Allowing your men to put their hands on her sealed your fate. You die today.”
With those final words, he stalked forward like a predator hunting prey, amber eyes flashing red. His face morphed, taking the shape of a dog before he pounced, biting into flesh, ripping bone and shredding muscle.
Blood splattered his face and arms, dripping down the front of his body as he tore his enemy apart. Kagome watched, trying to keep the contents of her stomach where they were. She didn’t always agree with the things her mate did, but she knew Naraku was a bad guy – the worst, even.
She’d never begrudged her mate the opportunity for revenge – it flowed like lightning through his veins, and she was well aware of this. His need to protect her was a priority for him. He would remedy the slight against him.
And she would support him, as she always had.
“Feel better?” She asked him as he turned slowly to face her, Naraku’s remains falling to the floor with a wet thud.
Walking over to him, a soft smile on her lips, she used her sleeve to clean the blood from his face.
Taking a deep breath, he felt himself relax, and pulled her into his arms.
“I’ll always do whatever it takes to ensure your safety, Kagome. Whatever it takes.”
Curling in his embrace, gore be damned, her smile grew.
“Hey guys, can we get out of here?” Inuyasha asked, covering his nose and mouth with his sleeve. “The smell of death is starting to get to me.”