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The Long Way Home by Philosophy Blue

Chapter 1

Hi guys! Stardust Miko is back again with another story! This is the postbirthday prezzy to you guys! I hope you liked my updates of Covenant and General, and also my oneshot. I'd like to say before I start that this is not my typical story. It's quite real-world, and more mature than anything else I have ever written, I think. But that's really for you to decide. So please sit back and enjoy the ride, and when you are done, leave a review! :)

-oOo-

"One egg or two?"

Kagome couldn't even bring herself to address her husband by name. She held a milky white egg in each hand as she waited for his answer.

"I will eat at the company."

Kagome scowled, the negative expression settling comfortably into her face. Anger was so familiar to her nowadays. And in her hurt rage, her mind jumped to conclusions that maybe weren't completely thought out. What, he wanted to leave the house as soon as possible? He didn't want to be in her company more than absolutely necessary?... His own wife? "Are you a part of this family or aren't you?" she snapped, slamming the eggs down into the frying pan. Yolk oozed out of the broken shells, the gloop spreading across the sleek black surface of the pan, but she paid the mess no mind as she glared at her husband.

Sesshomaru, dressed in suit and tie, put down his thermos of coffee and newspaper. Slowly, he turned his head to look at her, and if looks could freeze, Kagome would have wanted to jump straight into a fire. As it was, she stared bitterly into his eyes.

How did it go so wrong? No husband should look at his wife like that, with those cold eyes, like he's sick of her or something.

She prepared herself for a scathing put-down, but Sesshomaru just folded up his newspaper and stood up, turning his back on her pointedly.

"Have a good day at school, Rin."

Their thirteen year old daughter, who had just padded into the kitchen, nodded sleepily as she rubbed her eyes. "Have a good day at work, Dad." She gave Sesshomaru a fleeting hug as he passed her on his way out.

Kagome clenched her fists at her sides as the door slammed. So he wouldn't say anything to her, hmm? Not a single word? "Rin, what would you like for breakfast?" she asked, trying to keep it cool. She was slightly embarrassed that her daughter had seen the fight. "Toast? Eggs?"

"I'll eat at school," said Rin coolly.

At this like-father-like-daughter reply, Kagome lost it, her temper already roused by Sesshomaru's diss. "The breakfast program at school is for kids whose parents aren't home in the morning! I'm here, aren't I?" she shouted. "Now what do you want?"

Rin gave her a blank look. "The eggs are burning." She flicked open a compact mirror and started touching up her already perfectly shellacked lashes with mascara.

Eyes widening, Kagome spun around to see the eggs smoking on the frying pan, the shells buried in the solid yolk. Cursing, she hurried to the stove and turned the heat off, transferring the pan to a cool grid. She was too late. She glared down at the black eggs, which were still crackling and sizzling. Damn… "Looks like the eggs are ruined," she growled. Then she jumped as the sound of a slamming door assaulted her ears for the second time that morning. She turned to see that Rin had gone. Again, like father, like daughter, there had been not a word of goodbye.

"Have a…" Blinking rapidly to suppress her tears, Kagome gave up and sat down at the table, yanking off her apron. She buried her face in her hands and tried to control her breathing. Her heart was beating wildly in her chest, and her cheeks were burning. Why is my life so awful? How in the world did I get into this mess? This… sorry excuse for a marriage? Why do I feel like a stranger in my own home?

The ringing of her cell phone distracted her from her misery, and she shuffled to the spacious living room to take the call. A photo of her best friend grinning was on the screen. She tapped the green phone icon and held the Samsung Galaxy S6 to her ear. "Hello?" she said dully.

"Heyyy," purred Sango. "What's up?"

"Not much…"

"Hey, what's up?" she repeated, concerned by Kagome's tone of voice. "Is Sesshomaru being a jackass again? 'Cause if he is, I can be over there in five and give him a good pounding for you…"

Kagome smiled for the first time in what felt like days. "Yeah, maybe… He's such a jerk. And now he has a Mini-Me. Rin certainly wants to be just like her father when she grows up." There was a healthy dose of bitterness in her statement.

Sango snorted. "Are you kidding? What else is new?..." And then it sunk in. "No way. She's jackassing you?" she shouted. "Sesshomaru-style?"

Kagome stared at the wall, her trembling hand barely holding her phone in place. Sango, if only you knew. I can hardly tell the difference between them anymore. But instead of spilling her guts, she uttered a noncommittal grunt.

"Oh my God. She is, isn't she? How dare she? To her own mother?" There was some rustling on Sango's line. "I swear, Kagome, I am going to hunt her down and set her straight…"

"Please don't," Kagome sighed. "I just don't have the energy to deal with them anymore, Sango."

"Divorce him!" urged Sango. "And give him full custody of the ungrateful little brat while you're at it! It's time you should stand up for yourself! Don't let those ungrateful dogs tread all over you like that, like you're a doormat or something! Take control of your life, girlfriend! And remember, I've got your back all the way!"

At this, Kagome lost it. The tears she had barely been holding back burst free from their refinements and flowed freely down her cheeks, her shoulders shaking. Unnoticed in her misery, her phone slipped from her grasp and fell to the floor, clattering loudly on the polished wood. She doubled over and sobbed openly. This was all just too much. She couldn't take it much longer; the frosty silences, the sneering… What had gone wrong? Why was her stupid life so stupidly… stupid? What had she done to deserve this? A husband who treated her like furniture, a daughter who disrespected her to her face, who obviously hated her?

She regretted so much; meeting Sesshomaru, marrying Sesshomaru, and basically just Sesshomaru. What had she ever seen in him? That cold arrogance, the way he acted like the world was his oyster. Her friends had been skeptical of their relationship, telling her that there was no way such a prominent figure as Sesshomaru Takahashi would stay with her for long. Not that she was subpar, of course, they had assured her. But a man with his looks and his prestige and his money would have women lining up at his door, women who came from wealthy families, women who could walk in ten-inch stilettos. It was like marrying a movie star; you could never be sure he could be faithful, because of all the hot actresses he would meet. But like the fool she was, she had brushed aside their misgivings and fallen in love with the ice prince. And when she fell, he caught her and swept her up in all she could ever have dreamed of; a perfect wedding, a tastefully decorated house with sprawling grounds… and what she thought was love.

Well, not anymore. She didn't know why he had married her, or why he still kept her around, but she wouldn't wait to be kicked out of his house. She would walk out with her pride intact. She would divorce Sesshomaru Takahashi.

-oOo-

Kagome was back in the kitchen, impatiently waiting for the water to boil so she could fix a cup of tea, when the front door slammed open.

Heart jumping into the back of her throat, she leapt to her feet. "Wh-who's there?" she called unsteadily. She eyed the steaming pan of water. Would it make more of a weapon or hindrance? There were some really sharp knives in the drawer…

"Kagome? It's me, Sango!"

She relaxed her grip on the butcher knife when her best friend hurried into the kitchen with wild, untamed hair. "What the hell are you doing here?" Rin must have left the door unlocked...

"When you dropped the phone and started crying, I got really worried, so I rushed here as fast as I could." Sango ran her fingers through her hair. "I could really use a brush…" Then her gaze turned serious. "Kagome, are you okay?"

At the question, Kagome felt her eyes watering again, but for entirely a different reason than ten minutes ago. She had known Sango since elementary school, but hadn't become best friends until junior high. Since then, they had been inseparable. "Sango… You're such a good friend," she sniffled. She couldn't believe her friend had actually driven over so quickly after their call… And then immediately felt guilty for thinking that. But that wasn't entirely her fault; two certain people she had loved had been ripping at her heart for years. She might have trust issues, thanks to them.

Sango's shoulders slumped. "Don't cry," she protested. Nevertheless, she stepped forward and wrapped her arms around Kagome. "Come on, let's sit on the couch and you can tell me all about it if you want to."

Kagome nodded, her face buried in Sango's shoulder. "Okay…" she mumbled. "You might want to turn off the water first."

Her friend pushed her away gently, laughing. "Go on, make yourself comfortable. I'll finish up the tea; the water's hot enough anyways. Peppermint with brown sugar, right?"

"Do you even have to ask?" Kagome joked in that odd voice that people use when they laugh suddenly after crying. She padded out of the kitchen and yanked a couple stray jackets off the couch to make room for two. She sat down on the silky cushions. She didn't have to wait long for her friend to return; before long, Sango was bustling into the living room, carrying a tray with a teapot and two teacups perched on it precariously.

"So," Sango began, after settling the tray on the coffee table. "Can you talk about it?"

Kagome nodded. "Yeah. You know how crappy my relationship with Sesshomaru has been lately, right?"

"Yeah."

"Well, this morning, I was in the kitchen with him, and I had these eggs in my hand, and I asked him how many eggs he wanted. And then he spouts some crap about eating at the company. I don't know why, but it's like my temper just rocketed away from me; I threw the eggs into the pan and started yelling at him. He didn't say anything, he just left… And when Rin walked in and I asked her what she wanted, she spouts some crap about eating the school!"

"Ohhhhh."

"Yeah, so I was yelling at her, and then she tells me the eggs are burning, and I turn around, and what do you know? Those eggs I threw down are burning, with the shells still there, so by the time I've got it off the heat, Rin is gone. And then that's where you called me." Kagome wound up her story with a sigh. Now that she had recounted it aloud, she realized how out of hand she herself had been. She hadn't needed to yell. But that didn't change the fact that Sesshomaru was an asshole, and that Rin was following in his Ferragamo-shaped footsteps.

"That sounds like a perfectly awful morning," Sango decreed. "If Miroku and I ever get married, and he and our kid started bullshitting on me like that, I would snap like that too, only worse probably. I don't really blame you. I mean, just this morning, and you might have been too snappy, but add in all those last years, and I admire you for your self-control."

Kagome laughed bitterly, taking a sweet sip of her peppermint tea. "Thanks." She stared over the rim of her teacup into her best friend's wide brown eyes. "You know, Sango, about that divorce…"

Sango sat up eagerly, eyes shining. "Yeah?"

"I've been thinking…"

-oOo-

Sesshomaru lingered on his doorstep, reluctant to enter his own home. He steeled his nerve and unlocked the door, stepping inside to the warmly lit interior of the entrance hall.

"I'm home."

"Hi, Sesshomaru."

He slid out of his shoes. He had to admit, he was surprised by the welcome.

"How was your day?"

"It was acceptable," he said. Feeling that her question required a response of the same ilk, he asked in response, "And yours?"

She stared at him, and he got the feeling that she was hiding something from him. "It was okay, I guess. We need to talk."

Ignoring the last statement, Sesshomaru set down his briefcase on the kitchen table. "You know where Rin is, yes?"

She frowned. "Actually, no. She didn't come home from school… But I decided not to worry."

He looked up at her, his eyes burning with anger.

She blinked at him insolently. "What? It's not the first time it's happened. Besides, I'm sure you know where she is."

"She texted me saying she would be eating dinner at a friend's," said Sesshomaru. "But that does not excuse the fact that you were willing to dismiss our daughter's unexcused absence so easily." His voice might as well have been a sword edged with diamond.

She rolled her eyes. "Our daughter? It really doesn't feel like that, you know. She shows me zero respect, Sesshomaru. Don't you think a daughter should tell her mother if she won't be home after school as usual?"

Sesshomaru searched for an excuse. "Perhaps she forgot."

"Maybe she has selective memory loss, then!" shouted Kagome. "Because every single time something important comes up, it's you she goes to, not me!"

"Perhaps that is because she feels that you are not a good mother," he replied, refusing to shout in return. He met her angry blue eyes, and spoke the words he knew would hurt her the most. "Perhaps I feel the same."

He took a perverse pleasure in seeing the hurt cloud her beautiful features. She deserved it, he thought.

"Whatever. This isn't about Rin."

"Oh?"

She seemed to gather up the courage. "It's about us."

He took off his jacket and hung it on a hook affixed to the wall. He decided to hurt her more. "There is no us."

At first, there was silence, and he wondered if she would rush up to her room in tears. It wouldn't be the first time. But then she spoke in a surprisingly steady voice.

"Then you wouldn't disagree to a divorce, then?"

He spun around. "What?" He had to have heard wrong. There was no way she could have...

She was staring at him, arms crossed. Her defiant posture screamed stubbornness. "I said what I said. I'm not happy with my life, the life you have provided me with. I'm done.We're done. I'm getting a divorce, and from your remarks, I gather that you will not put up a fight, which is good, because I'd like to move on with my life as soon as possible. There are better men to meet." She spat out the last words with a venom that shocked even he, the ice prince.

To his credit, Sesshomaru's mask of indifference did not slip. "If that is what you think, then you are mistaken. You are not leaving."

She narrowed her eyes. "Listen, buddy. 'There is no us.' That is a direct quote from you. We. Are. Getting. A. Divorce. And don't you dare try to fight it. You have no right, after all you've put me through."

"How do you get off being the wronged party here?" questioned Sesshomaru. "It is I who am inconvenienced by this marriage."

Kagome bit her lip. So he was going be an asshole, all the way, huh? "Fine, then. So you'll sign on the dotted line when I give you the form? After all, I'll be taking myself off your hands."

"No. There will not be a divorce."

"Make up your fucking mind!" she screamed. "Let's face it, this marriage is screwed. So let's just end it now and start over with separate lives."

"No." Sesshomaru walked over to the fridge. "This matter is settled." He heard, with his superior demon ears, the front door opening, and caught Rin's scent.

"What the hell, you fucking douchebag?" Kagome shrieked, clenching her fists so hard that her knuckles cracked. "Make up your goddamn mind! I will not waste any more of my life with you!"

There was a resounding slapping sound, and the entire left half of her face was burning with a suddenness and intensity that was shocking. She stared at the wall uncomprehendingly. What…? She had been glaring at Sesshomaru just now, hadn't she? Why was her head suddenly turned to the right? She slowly raised her hand to her cheek, caressing the throbbing flesh, and straightened her head. Kagome's eyes widened. Sesshomaru's searing amber irises were inches from her own. Agonizingly slowly, she realized what had happened.

Oh...no...he...DIDN'T!

"DId you just...slap me?" she asked, an undercurrent of ominous doom to her words.

He stared coolly into her accusing eyes, and stepped back. "You were disrespectful and deserving of punishment."

Kagome was at a loss for words. She could feel her blood throbbing in her face, and her heartbeat was loud in her ears. He had slandered her every chance he had gotten, sure, he had mocked her and ridiculed her, but never before had he hit her. He...had...hit her. Hit her. He had really done it.

"Oh my god!"

Her head jerked around, and saw with horror, Rin standing in the hall, staring at them with what looked like delight in her eyes. How long had her daughter been standing there? Had she…? No, there was no doubt. She had witnessed, at the very least, the slap.

"Rin…?" she said weakly. "Go to your room now."

Rin ignored her and turned to Sesshomaru instead. "Dad, are you finally going to divorce her?" There was no mistaking the eagerness in her voice. "Oh my god, why didn't I take a video of that? I could totally have Snapchatted it to all my friends!"

Sesshomaru smirked down at his daughter. "Come now, you wouldn't wish to humiliate your mother in such a manner, would you?"

Rin scoffed. "What-ever." She rolled her eyes. "But still. It would've been hilarious. Seriously though, Dad. Can you please get a divorce? I can't stand her anymore!"

Every word was like a lance, stabbing and ripping at Kagome's heart. This felt so surreal. This couldn't be her own daughter saying those awful things. It couldn't be.

Sesshomaru shook his head. "There will not be a divorce, Rin. Now go to your room."

"Aww!" But Rin obeyed her father and trudged off reluctantly upstairs, casting glances over her shoulder at her parents, as if she were afraid of missing out on any more action.

In the silence that followed, Sesshomaru looked back to Kagome. "Get your act together, woman," he said coldly. "And never insult me so again. And do not mention a divorce ever again. I will decide when to cast you out of my life."

She closed her eyes, and a single tear coursed down her still-throbbing cheek. When she opened her eyes again, Sesshomaru was still staring at her. "Is that understood?"

And at the moment when she should have fought for what she wanted, when she should have been yelling and screaming at him, Kagome did the very opposite. Her vision blurring with hot tears, she fumbled for her keys and purse and dashed out of her-no, his-house. As she ran down the walk, the crying began in earnest. She could barely press down on the unlock button of her car remote with her thumb, and opening the door of her car was a challenge, because she kept snatching at the handle. After what seemed like an eternity, she was backing out of the driveway, headlights lighting a path through the night.

And sobbing like a child, hands shaking on the wheel, seat belt unfastened, Kagome drove away from her life, unaware that Sesshomaru was leaning against the open doorway, watching her go with an indiscernible look in his fiery eyes.

-oOo-

Inteeense! :) What do you guys think? Do you like it? ...Or naw? I kinda thought I used too many "..."s in this chapter, I'm not really sure though. Any other stuff you'd like to tell me, feel free to leave a review! Remember, reviews are inspiration! :D

 

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