Increase Text Size Decrease Text Size Divider Print This Chapter Divider

Keep It A Secret by Smortz

Come

<!-- @page { margin: 0.79in } P { margin-bottom: 0.08in } -->

A/N

Alright, I did it again. I found a challenge posted by Aubrey Simone that wanted a How to Train Your Dragon/Inuyasha hybrid-like story, and I was unable to turn away from it. Also, I am working on a Robin Hood parody for Songbird's challenge. So expect some humor in my upcoming fics while I wait for the LovelyMiko to give me the next prompt for Time Floats On, which is not a humorous fic.

Here is Chapter 1 for Aubrey Simone. Also, this story will be updated when she issues a new prompt, which will be monthly. :)

Thanks to Naq and Dreamcatcher for helping me come up with this title!

 

Also! Thanks to Calypso for editing this!!!!

Enjoy and Review!

~Smo

Chapter 1

The tendrils of pink energy flew from her fingers in a violent episode of uncontrolled sparks. It hit the rock, blowing it up into smithereens. All the other students in her miko training class ducked as the repelling sparks bounced off the rock and back towards them. Kaede, the teacher, quickly waved her hand, effectively absorbing the rouge energy.

She shot Kagome a look that could kill. “Do you not heed a word I say, child? I asked you to lift the rock!” She lectured. Her aged eyes sought out the best student in the class. “Kikyo, show Kagome what I expect.”

Kikyo huffed victoriously, standing up in the miko garb she had earned. The red and white symbolized her chastity and power that a priestess required. Kagome had always wanted to be in that wardrobe. It was her life dream, the only way to escape a domesticated life of a housewife was to become a miko. She forced herself to watch as Kikyo gently waggled her fingertips at the rock. Her power glided through the air gracefully, wrapping around the rock and lifting it into the air. She cast Kagome a smug look, before setting it down and taking her seat once more.

Instantly, Kagome was on the defense. How could she be so pure and so devious at the same time? “Kaede, I understand that you said lift the rock,” she clarified, picking up a piece of the rock she had destroyed. “Technically, I lifted the rock – just not in one piece.”

Kaede snorted, shaking her head in disappointment. “You are one of the oldest students here, and yet you show no hope of succeeding. If you can't figure out how to use your powers, you'll never fulfill your true purpose of being here. Class dismissed.”

The older woman turned, folding her hands behind her back and stalking out of the clearing. Kagome huffed, pushing herself up and dusting the dirt off her raggedy, brown kimono. “Come with me, child,” Kaede called over her shoulder to her, startling Kagome. She instantly felt as if she was in trouble again.

Yes,” she returned obediently. Her feet carried her in the direction Kaede had gone, following the older woman into the hut and watching as she brought the fire to life easily. “What do you need from me, Lady Kaede?” Kagome wondered.

I want you to stop taking the class.” The words left Kaede easily, no sign of reluctance or hesitation found in the firm tone. Yet, the words caused Kagome's heart to freeze and her blood to turn cold. The class was her last chance at a free life. She had to become a miko.

What do you mean?” She asked, falling to her knees on a small pillow to come face to face with the older woman currently stirring tea. “Lady Kaede, there is still two weeks! I can try!” Kagome shouted, trying to figure out a way to change her teacher's mind.

Why do you want to become a miko?” Kaede challenged, beginning to pour two cups of tea calmly. Obviously, the conversation was having two very different reactions from the two women in the hut.

I want to help others,” Kagome rehearsed, knowing that it was the required answer. She had always heard the real miko give the answer. It was always the same. They want to cure the sick, give to the the poor, protect the vulnerable. Kagome wanted to travel and see the world. She wanted to be free of the feminine duties that called to her since birth.

You want no such thing. You are using this to escape your scheduled marriage with Hojo,” Kaede growled in reply, correcting Kagome's lie. “How can you take on others' responsibilities when you cannot even handle your own? You will dishonor your family by failing this class and running away from the marriage. You will shame your name!”

Kagome was quiet as she took in those words. She knew that she was being rebellious. She knew that she was risking her family's name for her own desires. Yet, she didn't find herself caring. Deep down inside, she could feel the burning passion. She needed to get out of here and find out what her purpose truly was. She sighed, shaking her head as she began to give up on that dream. “Lady Kaede, I-I know that I have a purpose somewhere. I can feel it in my blood. It burns through my veins telling me that I need to leave and go somewhere else. I need to find my own place. I can't do that if I fail this class,” Kagome begged and pleaded. She needed to finish this. It was the only way for her to attempt to find her happiness.

Kaede seemed to consider her answer. She leaned back on her heels, sipping her tea quietly as she contemplated Kagome's answer. She sighed, shaking her head. “You are a driven child, I see that, but it does not change the fact that you cannot control the powers you have been given. It is quite a shame. You are the most powerful I have ever seen, yet you do not realize it and therefore cannot control it.”

Kagome was confused at her words. She had never heard of her abundance of power. Kaede did not give her much time to fret over the thought. “I will give you one more chance,” Kaede whispered. “I am sending Kikyo on a journey to a town that has been repeatedly attacked by a demon. I wish for you to go with her and assist her in healing the villagers while she purifies the demon. I understand that healing is all you are capable of doing, so do not try anything risky.”

Kagome's eyes instantly started tearing up in happiness and excitement. She was going to go on a journey! It didn't quite sink in it that it could be dangerous or even fatal. All she cared about was the adventure that it promised. She dove at Kaede, pulling the older woman into a energetic hug. “Thank you! I swear I will not fail you!” She proclaimed, jumping up and beginning to leave the hut. She returned a few moments later with a clumsy smile. “When do we leave?”

Kaede sighed, already regretting her decision. “After lunch. Go prepare yourself and meet Kikyo at the shrine,” she instructed. She watched once more as Kagome fled from the hut, doubt filling her system. She felt as if she had just led the lamb to the slaughter. “Kami help thee,” she whispered, taking another calming sip of her tea.

~Keep It a Secret~

Kagome jumped with excited as she fled to the shrine. Kikyo was waiting, not looking entirely happy with the sudden turn of events. Kagome did not mind though. She had just come from a heated argument with her mother, who had forbade this sudden escapade. She had not listened. Her mother was trying to marry her off to a farm boy named Hojo. While the boy was kind and polite, he was also a terrible bore. Kagome could not imagine living with such a thing. So, she had eagerly ran away after the battle to the shrine, hoping for an early departure.

She watched as Kikyo boarded the horse in one graceful leap. Kagome chewed on her lip, suddenly feeling as if everyone was watching her – comparing her to Kikyo. Quickly, she slid her foot up and into the stirrup, hoisting herself upon the black gelding. Her mount was muscular, used more for farm work and pulling plows than traveling. Even now, he coughed and groaned at the thought of a trip. “It's okay, boy,” Kagome cheered, patting his neck as she steered the reigns towards Kikyo, giving him a nudge with her heel. “I am glad I caught up to you,” Kagome returned, sensing her sudden annoyance. The woman had attempted to leave without her.

I apologize. The news did not reach me that I had an assistant,” Kikyo got out, her lips twisting into a smirk at the title she had given Kagome. Said woman straightened and nudged her horse beside Kikyo's. It was a blatant stab at her status. Instead of riding behind her, she was beside her, presenting the equality.

How far away is this village?” Kagome wondered, remembering what Kaede had said. This village seemed to be on the bad side of a demon, who was attacking their village nightly. “We should get there by nightfall,” Kikyo answered. Her tone was dull.

The rest of the ride was quiet, much to Kagome's disappointment. She enjoyed talking and wanted a companion that could converse with her and have fun. Sighing, she shrugged her shoulders and let her horse slow down, knowing that Kikyo was deliberately pushing her horse faster to get ahead of her. She patted his neck once more, brushing her fingers through his mane.

As the sun began to set, her sapphire orbs took in their surroundings. The orange and pink hues from the skies as the sun disappeared behind the mountains. The trees were green and full with age and wisdom. The wind carried through them, causing the branches to release the melody with the help of the leaves. She heard the birds communicating and saw the squirrels scurrying up into the branches to continue their small lives. It was luscious and free. This was what she wanted.

She sighed wistfully, trying to figure out how she could become one with it. She wanted to be careless, to be accepted. This was something she wanted. “I will become a miko,” she whispered with motivation that pulsed through her.

You will fail,” Kikyo grumbled from in front of her. Clearly, the woman was not supportive. Kagome rolled her eyes.

I appreciate your support,” she returned. Idly, she fingered the reins until a flock of birds suddenly cried out with distress. They flew from the trees, startling their horses and sending them into alert mode. Kagome felt Kikyo instantly react like a miko. Her power shot out, soaking the forest like feelers, trying to figure out who was there.

A large explosion caused Kagome to start. “The demon is attacking the village,” she returned. She wasn't quite sure how she knew it. It just felt ominous. She felt as if she were there, feeling the onslaught of his evil tirade.

Quick!” Kikyo shouting, kicking her horse into a gallop. Kagome followed, her own horse coughing in return for his sudden sprint. His rough gallop had her bouncing as she clung to his mane, trying to feel out with her powers. She could not focus though.

They saw the flutter of smoke begin to ascend into the sky as they entered the village. Bodies were splayed out on the soil, blood soaking the dirt. Flames were swallowing whole huts. Livestock were torn apart, shredded beyond recognition. She couldn't differentiate what was a sheep and what was a goat. “Dear god,” Kikyo whispered, stunned for a moment by the merciless raid that had just gone underway.

They could still hear wood being shredded. It was a clear indication that whatever had attacked was still here. Kagome wasted no more time. Spurring on by the feeling of needing retribution and revenge, she jumped from her horse, tossing his reins over a wooden post and running into the village.

The evil energy was pulsing, fighting to consume her. She felt it, making her nauseous. Her own priestess energy was rising to the surface at the open challenge, and she felt it begin to spark at her fingertips. It was near her, watching her. She could feel the red eyes on her. She turned, knowing it was approaching, when Kikyo's horse blocked her vision.

You do not listen well,” she whispered, slapping Kagome upside the head with her bow. Kagome winced, but did not argue with her. Now was not the time. “Find the survivors, take them out of village and begin to collect the dead. Those were your orders!” She demanded. Then, as quickly as she had come, she left to face the demon that had caused this.

Kagome didn't have time to sulk at her loss. She returned to the work at hand, shouting for someone. She heard the voices. They were everywhere, begging and pleading for her to help  and hear them. She entered hut after burning hut, dragging elderly people out and helping to save children that had inhaled smoke.

She gathered them in a small pasture that had once housed cattle. They had all gone now, running after feeling the approaching danger. The fencing had been destroyed, giving them a way out. Kagome slid a young girl on a futon. Her parents had not been so lucky, and she felt tears begin to burn in her orbs as she focused her powers over the girl's stomach.

Smoke began to escape from her lips. Kagome was pushing it out of her lungs. She choked and coughed, but there was nothing Kagome could do until it was all out of her system. When nothing else was came from the child, she moved onto the next victim, doing the same until she arrived at the other injuries. Broken bones, gashes and bruises, she saw it all that day. Her innocent need for adventure suddenly felt guilty.

She had wanted to travel and see the world, but this was not something she had considered. This was destruction and mayhem. Kagome shook her head as she finally finished healing the last wound. Thankfully, other women had began to help her.

Her next task was to locate Kikyo. She could no longer feel the woman's energy. She nodded to the women helping her, walking back over to her horse and using the fence to mount him. “Come on,” she whispered, a tone of defeat, thick with regret and sorrow.

The horse almost nodded, releasing a sigh as if to say none of this was her fault. Kagome shook her head, but caught a glimpse of something. Magenta, a streak of a color passed through the forest that dare not belong to any animal she had ever seen. She paused, pulling her horse to a stop and trying to scan the forest to see it once more.

Curiosity filled her, but she knew she had to control it. Dutifully, she returned to the people's side. She would not leave them until Kikyo came back. She tied her horse up once again, but before she could dismount, the woman approached her. “We need water,” she whispered, her voice still shaking with fear.

Kagome nodded. She knew that because of the fire exposure they were dehydrated. “Where is the well?” She asked.

The woman's head turned towards the center of town. “It is just over there,” she returned. Her voice was still shaking, and Kagome knew she wasn't comfortable with leaving. Their was safety in numbers and leaving to go to the well took her out of that group. Kagome offered a reassuring smile.

I will fetch it, just tend to the others,” she said before offering her hand. “I am Kagome.”

Sango,” the woman returned, giving a brilliant smile. “You are truly a blessing, Lady Kagome,” she replied, returning to the people's side.

Kagome sighed, feeling fear nip at her insides. Kikyo should have been back by now. She shook her head, urging her horse at a walk towards the well. She sparked her powers, trying to erect a barrier around them. It was small and kept flickering, but it would do while she was away.

The well was a large stone circle. The post above it had several ropes connected and curled. There were at least five buckets tied to the side at the moment she arrived. She looked around for a wagon, knowing that she did not want to make more than one trip. She me a clucking noise and forced her horse over to a small wooden plank. This would have to do.

She hopped off her mount, her feet landing and shooting a pain up her ankle when the soil caved in. She released a squeal of fright but caught her balance and continued on to the wooden slate. She tugged it over to her horse, pulling off one of her side reins and tying it to the stirrup. She had to improvise, and she had to do it quickly. Urgently, she began to feel for the water buckets. Each time one was filled, she carefully set it on the wooden slate. It was when she was on the fifth bucket that everything went horribly wrong.

The hut behind her collapsed. A loud roar echoed and caused her horse to whinny in fright. It bucked and kicked, taking off and spilling all the water in its wake. Kagome toppled over as the roar shook the ground. Suddenly, she saw the beast in all its glory. The magenta strips framing its mouth as it spat out acid. The golden orbs looked haunted and troubled. It slammed its front paws right into the hut, the wood splintering beneath its weight.

It paused to look at her. Kagome didn't waste any time. She summoned her powers. She thought of the rock, how to focus it at an object, and released the power in one burst. It shout out in chaotic pieces and slammed into the beast. It yelped and whined as it toppled back. Blood spurted from the wound she had caused on its leg. It turned quickly, taking off into the forest.

The action caused Kagome to raise an eyebrow in confusion. It was unlike a demon to run away from a fight. Usually they were honor bound to either win or die trying. Giving up was hardly ever an option simply because all demons were controlled by their blood-lust, or so she was told.

Kagome!” Kikyo called from behind her. The royal horse she sat upon cantering back into the clearing. “I chased off the demon but was unable to finish it off. What has happened?” she asked, seeing the water buckets splayed out along the ground.

Twenty killed, thirty-five are injured,” she reported. “I was able to save a few huts but others were too far gone and burned. Did you say you chased out the demon?” Kagome asked the last part, not quite sure if Kikyo had simply gotten confused. Surely, she had seen Kagome use her power and scare the demon away.

Yes, I chased it across the river, but it summoned a youkai orb and I could not get in. I did not want to use too much power on the defense so I returned. We will stay and destroy it tomorrow night. Tell the villagers it is safe.”

Kagome was at a loss of words. It sounded as if they had faced off two completely different demons. “What did it look like?” She asked cautiously and was worried when Kikyo shot her a look of confusion.

It is definitely a dog youkai, which is precarious because they tend to stay to their territory in the West. It has ventured out too far,” Kikyo explained as she began to throw the buckets back into the well to fetch the water Kagome had spilled.

Kagome nodded. “Now that it is clear, I will try to see how many huts were loss,” Kagome explained, trying to scan their surroundings and finding her horse lurking at the side of the pasture. She didn't wait for Kikyo's permission. She took off at a fast walk, hopping onto her mount and nudging him forward at a jog into the forest the demon had left in.

There was something not right about this whole ordeal. Kaede and the villagers had said their was only one demon, yet Kikyo had said she had chased one off by the river to the east. Kagome, however, had attacked the one near the well and he had fled – to the west. She sighed as the night threatened to grow darker. She should have grabbed a torch or something. Fortunately, the first class of miko training was how to illuminate your surroundings using your powers. Kagome snapped her fingers, and a large orb encircled her.

She paused when she heard a pained growl. She approached a small creek, but heard in the distance the pounding of a waterfall. This must have been the other side of the river that flowed around the village. She dismounted her horse and tied him to the branches when he began to grow antsy. She would rather be on foot then bucked off at the moment.

The large waterfall crashed into the water below. Yet, there was something odd about this one. Usually, waterfalls were in front of a rock wall, but this was in front of a large cave. The dark depths of it should have been black but she saw what looked to be a large lump behind it.

I-I'm coming in,” she whispered, not knowing whether to shout it and give up her position, or offer it as some sort of peace treaty. The mist from the falls began to splatter against her face as she slid behind the waterfall. The large cave was unlike anything she'd ever seen. Instantly, she stood on an edge that dropped into a pit and a series of tunnels.

She heard something move, dragging against the surface. “Hello?” She called out again, not exactly knowing what she should be looking for. Maybe, they were identical twins or something and she had just found their lair. That idea sparked fear in her and knew she should probably leave. Unfortunately, Kagome was controlled mostly by her curiosity. Sure, curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back. Right?

With that in mind, she hopped down into the pit. The pink light that came off her expose several tunnels that now surrounded her. She saw something flash from her right and turned just in time to see a silver tail disappear down the tunnel. Maybe, the demon was too weak to face her, which meant now was her chance to figure this puzzle out.

She stepped into the tunnel, staring up at the variety of minerals tucked into each stone. It was amazing no one had started mining in this hive. “I am not here to hurt you,” she allowed, listening to her voice echo through the tunnel. “I know that I did hurt you, but I was startled, and you were spitting acid at me,” she returned. Instantly, her mind began to trail off.

It's not really nice, you know? You ruined someone's home and then began to burn people alive with puke, in a way. That sounds like a very dishonorable death. Who want to read that on their tombstone? Death by acidic vomit?” She ranted, shaking her head to clear her thoughts.

She heard something sniff, as if it completely disagreed with her way of thinking. Shrugging, she rolled her eyes, “Yea, still, I apologize for using my energy to combat it. I am still untrained.”

Why had she just told this demon that she was untrained? She mentally smacked herself as she neared a corner and paused to collect herself. This was it. She could sense a dead end once she entered the next pit, which meant that the demon had to be there.

Quickly, she jumped out and erected a barrier, but stared in awe at the beast before it. The large mass of silver fur and claws was intimidating. He was laying in the middle of the pit on a large boulder that looked to have fallen at some point in time. It caused several cracks on the ground level. He coughed, blood beginning to pour from his front paws. She saw the numerous gashes that her uncontrolled powers had inflicted. Guilt riddled her system. Sure, she knew that miko purified demons, but this looked so painful.

His slid his head along the boulder until his red eyes stopped on her. His eyes looked saddened by something. It was as if he was unaware of why she had hurt him. Kagome didn't understand it, but she suddenly felt as if he were safe. That he wouldn’t hurt her. “My name is Kagome,” she greeted, bowing to him. “I am here to capture the demon that has been attacking this village,” she explained, still remaining in her bow. “I-I don't think it is you.'

Something clashed with her barrier. She looked up to see that his eyes had widened a little, but his tail had curled and slammed against her barrier. It now flopped on the ground beside her. Quietly, she tried to decipher the message. He was vulnerable, and she wasn't.

Carefully, she nodded and let the barrier around her lower. She took a few steps toward him, but when he released a growl, came to a complete stop. Obviously, she was close enough. “I-I need to look at your paws,” Kagome whispered. “You know as well as I do that you can't heal with a miko's energy integrated with your wound.”

He sniffed once again. It was obviously his way of saying he disagreed, but she got the feeling that it was him calling her stupid too. Maybe it was just her own insecurities though. Vaguely, she remembered her father when she was younger telling her about his multiple adventures. While he was away at war, his team of men had come across an injured wolf. They had trained it as best they could, and she remembered his helpful tips. When dealing with an animal you have to display confidence and dominance.

So, Kagome decided she would treat this demon as if he were an injured wolf. She cleared her throat, straightened her shoulders, and lifted her chin up to show that she was in charge. “Come here,” she ordered.

His tail slammed against her body. It caused her to fly, her feet lifting off the ground as her back collided with the nearest wall. She fell to the ground, her consciousness beginning to slip away. Before darkness overwhelmed her, she was sure she heard him sniff once more.

 

 

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.