Kaede shuffled around her hut
rearranging medicinal herbs and jars of other plants. She hobbled over to her
boiling water and bent over to make herself some tea, groaning as her bones
creaked in protest. As she sat down to enjoy it, Inuyasha burst through the hut
with a bloody woman in his arms.
"Hey hag! This girl is a friend of
Kagome's and she's hurt! Can you help her?"
Kaede stared at the girl. A hanyou
girl? How strange...Then she slowly stood up and walked to one of her herb
"Inuyasha, lay her down and get a
cloth and some of that boiled water to clean her wounds with. I will apply this
to her wounds afterwards."
Inuyasha nodded gently laying her
down on the futon. He picked up a rag that was next to Kaede's pot and dunked it
in the hot water. Squeezing the dripping cloth of its excess water, Inuyasha
turned back to Riquo. He started cleaning the dried blood off her face when
Kagome and Shippo walked in followed by Miroku and Sango with Kilala perched on
"Is she going to be all right?!"
Kagome asked frantically.
"Ay child, calm ye self down. This
mysterious girl is a half demon. Her wounds have already healed."
They all looked at Riquo and sure
enough her wounds had completely closed. Kaede grabbed another rag and began to
help Inuyasha clean off the blood. Kagome sat down against a wall of the hut and
watched Inuyasha clean Riquo's face. I've never seen him act so gentle with
someone...especially a stranger. Inuyasha was gently wiping the girl's face
and neck with the utmost care. His amber eyes stayed focused on her face. Kagome
also noticed that Inuyasha took care not to go below her neck. After a minute of
cleaning Kaede sat back, "Inuyasha there is too much blood on this girls body.
Take her to the nearby spring and clean her off."
Inuyasha blushed profusely,
"Why should I do it?! Let Kagome and Sango do it!"
"I asked ye to do it Inuyasha now
do it before I ask Kagome to subdue ye!" Kaede said harshly. Grumbling
obscenities Inuyasha hesitantly picked Riquo's unconscious up off the floor and
stepped out into the sunlight.
"Kaede, why did you want Inuyasha
to do it?" Kagome asked. Kaede grinned to herself, "This old woman has her
~*~At the Spring~*~
Inuyasha reached the closest spring
to the village. It was completely surrounded by trees and thick bushes, perfect
for anyone who wanted privacy. Inuyasha snorted, Kami knows I don't want
someone watching me do this.
He crouched down next to the spring,
staring at the spring and then staring at the bloody woman in his arms,
contemplating on how he was going to pull this off.
"Keh, screw it."
Inuyasha stepped into the spring with
his clothes on, inhaling sharply when the hot water seeped through his pants to
his skin. Holding Riquo by her waist, Inuyasha propped her up against a wall so
she could stand without him holding her. Taking care of that, Inuyasha looked at
his hands and then cursed. He'd forgotten the rag. Looking around quickly,
Inuyasha stripped himself of both his shirts. Laying the red one on the bank
next to Riquo's head, and opted to use the white one to clean her up.
Soaking the shirt, Inuyasha
cautiously began with her arms, the dried blood from her arms staining his shirt
and changing the water around them to a light red. Inuyasha dunked the shirt
back into the water and rinsed her arms off clean.
Inuyasha sighed, "Done with that."
Unfortunately for poor Inuyasha, the
water came up above Riquo's breasts and he had no way of cleaning everything
else. Sighing to himself, Inuyasha picked her up by the waist again. He rested
his foot against the wall of the hot spring and sat Riquo down on his thigh. He
placed his hand on her back to keep her from falling backwards. This put the
water level right below Riquo's hips. Inuyasha took this time to examine her
strange clothing, seeing is how no one else seemed to have noticed it.
Her top...if you wanted to call it
that, was a simple black band covering her breasts but barely considering the
amount of cleavage displayed. Inuyasha blushed, since her breasts were right in
his face. Despite the situation, Inuyasha did appreciate the view considering
how ample she was and smirked. Her skin was tan, a nice almond color, and a big
contrast to her brown hair. She had black decorative band around her upper arm
with silver engraved into it. Inuyasha followed the water that dripped down her
body to her navel. His eyes widened marginally.
Around Riquo's navel was a black
crescent moon, circling around her navel. Inuyasha frowned, making a mental note
to ask her about that later. He followed the fine brown hair of her nature's
trail down to the waist band of whatever garment was covering her lower
half. Inuyasha blushed again, considering she was straddling his thigh he could
tell it wasn't much. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath, trying to calm
down his already stiff erection.
Shaking his head Inuyasha continued
to wash her torso of the blood. Damn...what the hell happened to her?
Inuyasha had just finished her front torso and was about to dunk her into the
water to rinse her off when he noticed her breathing became irregular. Shit!
She's gona wake up!
Sure enough Inuyasha saw her body
tense and her head snapped forward, looking down at him. Inuyasha just stared
back at her, and noticing for the first time that her eyes were a beautiful
shade of green.
Riquo took in the situation for the
few seconds they were staring at each other. Ok...I'm wet, I'm straddling his
thigh, that man that rescued me is shirtless, heh, this is either a good thing
or a bad thing.
With that Riquo quirked an eyebrow,
"What are you doing?"
It was then that they both realized
that Inuyasha's hands were still on her back and on her torso. Riquo mentally
laughed at how flustered this man was. I guess I should be upset, but he did
just save me. But why am I straddling his thigh?!
Inuyasha frowned and removed his
thigh from underneath her. Riquo was caught off guard and unceremoniously
splashed into the water. She surfaced the hot spring sputtering, "Hey! What was
Inuyasha threw his bloody shirt at
her, "Finish cleaning yourself up and be quick about it! I have to get you back
to Kaede's so you can explain what the hell you're doing here."
"Kaede? Who the hell is Kaede? And
who the hell are you to boss me around, huh?"
Inuyasha turned around and glared at
her, lifting himself out of the water and sitting on the edge of the bank, water
dripping off him. She stared at his chest for a moment, appreciating how well
built he was and then caught herself before he noticed.
"Come on! Hurry up damnit!"
She stared at the bloody shirt in her
hands and then stared at him again. His white hair was soaked, and the tips of
it were red with blood. Her blood.
"You...you were cleaning my blood
off...weren't you?" She asked timidly.
"Keh, duh, you see anyone else here?"
Riquo smiled softly, her green eyes
showing her gratitude, and she slowly moved towards where he was against the
bank. She felt him tense so she decided not to say anything else to him yet. She
dunked the shirt in the water and began rinsing her hair and her ears. The
little amount of sunlight that shined through the tops of the trees gave her an
iridescent glow as she washed herself. Inuyasha just sat still watching her.
It's weird how she doesn't make me feel uncomfortable. Then again, she is a
hanyou, and a girl hanyou at that. The only other girl hanyou I've ever seen
before was Shaori but she was only six years old. But this girl...keh, maybe
she'll be able to understand me. None of the humans that I travel with could
possibly know what it's like to grow up as a hanyou, maybe this girl does.
Both of them stayed silent, secretly
enjoying their hanyou company. Riquo finished with her brown hair and rinsed it
out by dunking her head underneath the water. Inuyasha watched her silhouette
move in the water with interest. He secretly marveled at her beauty and part of
him wondered if her scent was just as pretty. He could see her cleaning her legs
underneath the water because blood was coming off her in clouds in the water.
She shook herself in the water and then resurfaced facing Inuyasha.
They stared at each other for a
moment before Riquo smiled and said, "You have pretty eyes."
Inuyasha snorted but gave her a small
smile. Riquo grinned at him, exposing her white fangs and moved next to him in
the water. She stepped out of the water, her wet body reflecting the sunlight
off of her so that she glowed.
"Here," Inuyasha handed her his red
shirt that had been next to him, "you can use this to dry off."
Riquo eyed the shirt and then looked
at his bare chest again, "But what are you going to where? Are you going to just
walk back into that village half naked?"
He snorted, "They've seen worse."
Riquo laughed, a sound Inuyasha knew
he wanted to hear again and again. She handed him his soaked, but clean, white
shirt and sat down next to him and squeezed the water out of her hair. She dried
her ears off and Inuyasha heard her suppress a purr as she did so. She then
quickly went over her body and lastly her tail. It was then that Inuyasha
noticed that she was wearing a short black skirt that looked like the hem had been
shredded. It was rather short, going to the middle of her thigh. He also noticed
that she had a bangle (large bracelet) around her left ankle. It was similar to
the one on her arm except it had pink flowers engraved on it instead of silver
His thoughts were interrupted when
she began to speak to him. He looked at her and noticed she was completely dry
and staring at him intently.
"Huh?" he said.
Riquo giggled, "I asked what your
"Inuyasha. My name's Inuyasha."
Riquo smiled and Inuyasha thought he
could never get enough of her smile, "That's a nice name," he noticed her eyes
scanning over his body and he felt himself blush a little. She smiled again,
"Well Inuyasha, thank you for saving me, and for taking the time to tend to my
Inuyasha swallowed hard, "You're
She looked down and raised and
eyebrow. Inuyasha looked down at his hands where some of his hair was and
noticed the blood in it. "Do you want me to clean your hair or can you do
Inuyasha snorted. He gathered all of
his white hair onto one side, the opposite side where Riquo was so he could
still look at her, and dipped the ends of his hair into the water. Riquo watched
his every move, her green eyes scanning over his beautiful body. This guy
can't be for real. He's gorgeous! And lucky me get's to stare at his chest.
"So what's with that mark on
your stomach?" Inuyasha asked, wanting to get her mind off him since he saw
her staring at him.
"Huh?" Riquo stammered then
looked down, "O, that? Well, supposedly that's the symbol of my "future
mate" but I think my grandmother just tattooed that onto me while I was sleeping
when I was a baby."
Inuyasha stared at the crescent moon
around her navel. Future mate, huh? He snorted and stood, "Let's
go. Kagome's probably having a conniption by now." Riquo nodded and stood with
him, following him out of the spring but glancing back with a smile. She'd
always remember this as the first time she met Inuyasha.
Back at the hut, Kaede and the others
had been preparing lunch. The sun had shifted in the sky and it had turned out
to be a beautiful day despite previous events. While everyone was preparing a
different dish Shippo came up with the great idea that they should eat outside
since it was such a nice day outside.
"Fabulous idea Shippo," Miroku said
patting the little fox kitsune on the head, "but let's wait for Inuyasha and our
new guest to return so we can all go together."
"Go together where?"
"Inuyasha! Riquo! You're back!" In
the doorway stood Inuyasha followed by a slightly disoriented Riquo. She wasn't
so sure she was ready to be interrogated yet. Inuyasha led her into the tiny hut
where everyone was preparing what looked like a feast. Several different scents
reached her nose, some good and some bad, but nonetheless these scents reminded
Riquo how long it had been since she'd last eaten.
"Come in, come in and sit down. We
have much to talk about and ye can eat while we discuss this matter," Kaede
"Aaaw but I thought we were gona eat
outside!" Shippo whined sadly. He huffed and crossed his arms in an attempt to
look mean and tough. Kagome giggled and patted the little kitsune's head, "Let's
let Riquo rest for now Shippo, ok? We'll go outside later."
Inuyasha sat Indian-style against a
wall on the far side of the hut, and Riquo absently sat closely next to him.
Inuyasha took notice but didn't say anything since he felt how uncomfortable she
was. But Kagome noticed and narrowed her eyes slightly, hurt swimming in their
Everyone started picking at the food
that was in the center of the room now. Starving as she was, Riquo nervously
snatched a few items here and there and popped them into her mouth when Kagome
took Riquo's hand, "Riquo? Are you all
Riquo smiled gently at her and patted
her hand, "I'm fine Kagome, thank you, thank you all for coming to my rescue."
Inuyasha glared at her from the side,
"Ok, you've healed, now tell us who you are and how you know Kagome," he said
between bites of ramen Kagome had brought back.
Riquo glared at him, dumbfounded.
What's gotten into him? He was all sweet to me at the spring.
Sango glared at Inuyasha angrily, "Inuyasha! Give her a break! She just
recovered from serious injuries! She-"
"No, no, it's ok. I'm fine
now, really." She scooted further into the wall to try and get some space
from everyone surrounding her. Sango
decided to take the initiative and asked, "Um, Riquo, how is it that you're from
Kagome's time, yet you're a half demon and living in the our era?"
"What kind of half demon are you?"
"How are you a half demon?! You never
looked like one before when we were friends."
"Do you know anything about the jewel
shard?" Several glares were shot in Inuyasha's direction, "What?!"
Miroku took the distraction as his
chance, "Riquo, you are so beautiful it hurts, will you do me the honor of
bearing my children?"
Miroku sat there with a red handprint
on his cheek, "Just thought I'd ask," while Sango was seething. Kilala
meowed at her side and the brown haired woman took the time to give the two-tail
a piece of food and patted her head absently as if this was an everyday thing
Riquo laughed out loud.
Well at least some of them have a sense of humor. They can't be
all that bad.
"Ok, ok, be patient and I'll answer
all your questions. First of all, I am a black panther half demon and no I have
no connection to that infamous panther tribe that everyone hates. My father was
a human but my mother was a black panther demon and a powerful one at that. My
parents were both from this era as am I. When I was two my mother's tribe
found out about my father and were outraged," she closed her tear-filled eyes and sighed.
Sango leaned forward, "Please, go on.
What happened to your parents?"
Riquo looked away, tears glistening in
her eyes, "My father was killed. My grandfather killed him. I was next to
be killed but my grandmother predicted my future, saying that I was destined to
be powerful and lead the tribe. Whether that bullshit is true or not I don't
know but it spared me my life. But my mother, she was furious, so she took me to
that well and placed a spell over it, and that's when the well started allowing
people to pass through."
"But...I thought only Inuyasha and me
could get through the well...how is it possible that you got through?" Kagome
Riquo shook her head, "You see, my
tribe is from a small island off the east coast of Japan. We are a black panther
tribe but black magic has been passed down from generation to generation. My
mother's spell opened the well for any demon to get through. I can't explain why
it's changed now, I guess her spell was lifted."
Kagome nodded, "Continue please," she
still held Riquo's hand.
Riquo sniffed and closed her eyes.
Do I really have to do this? I've been repressing these memories for years now,
why should I bring them up all of a sudden? Her thoughts were jarred as she
felt something stroking her elbow. Using her senses, she felt that it was a
couple of fingers and that they had claws on the them. Opening her eyes she took
a quick glance to see that Inuyasha had his arms folded but the hand that was
hidden behind his sleeve was stroking her. She smiled, he must have felt how
nervous I was.
She sighed again, "The rest is pretty
simple. For sixteen years of my life I was raised in Kagome's era. Her and I met
when she was in grade school and I was in middle school. Then I discovered that
she was traveling back and forth through the well not long after she first fell
in. So, long story short, me and my mother took care of our affairs and came
That's when her tears started to
fall, and everyone took notice to the fact that they were black. Her body shook
with her tears as Kagome stroked her hand and Inuyasha secretly stroked her
elbow. Riquo leaned her head back against the wall with a thunk.
"My mother...because of her immense
powers...was hunted down about four months ago. The demon...no...no it was a
half demon! That bastard Naraku!"
"Naraku?!" The concerned voices of
everyone filled the hut talking about Riquo's connection to Naraku.
"Wait, wait...you know this demon?"
Riquo asked, anger dripping from her voice.
Kagome focused on her intently, "Yes,
we do. All of us have been hurt or cursed by him."
Riquo chuckled sarcastically and
continued with her story, "I was away hunting for my mother when I sensed the
attack. Even with my speed I was too late."
They sat silently for awhile
reminiscing on their own troubles caused by Naraku. The monk stared at his right
hand, agony flashing across his face. Then Riquo noticed the brown haired woman
idly petting the fire cat with a distant look in her eyes. Naraku must have
really hurt these people if they got like this.
"So, Riquo, what were you doing in
those chains in the forest? Did Naraku do that to you?" Riquo left her thoughts
to see the brown haired girl with the fire cat staring at her.
"Oh, no. A group of hunters have been
tracking me for months now. And," Riquo shrugged, "they finally caught up with
me. They beat me and I'm only lucky they didn't take advantage of me." With that
Kagome gasped and Inuyasha's stroking fingers paused momentarily before
Riquo glanced down to see the fox
questioning eyes look at her. She smiled at him, "What is it little guy?"
Shippo pouted, "My name is Shippo and
I have a question for you!"
Riquo giggled at him and ruffled his
hair, "Ok Shippo, what's your question."
Shippo puffed out his chest at the
respect he got from her, "You said your speed wasn't enough. Does
that mean you're really, really fast?"
Riquo giggled again and nodded, "I've been training for a long
time, especially on my speed little
one, I can outrun almost any demon," she winked at him.
Shippo smiled, "I bet you can't
outrun Kouga! He has jewel shards jammed into his legs and he's super fast!" For
some reason Shippo was obsessed with the wolf prince. Any time he came around
Shippo was always so damn happy.
Riquo smiled, "Well him and I haven't
exactly raced against one another but I think I can still beat him." She giggled
as he pouted and ruffled his hair. Kagome looked at her confused, "Wait, you
know Kouga? How so?"
Riquo smiled to herself glad that the
subject of her mother and Naraku was forgotten and then laughed out loud as Inuyasha
started to growl. Miroku and Sango gave knowing smiles to each other.
"Well after my mother was
I kind of roamed around taking care of myself. I went back to my island
occasionally but one time on my way back to the mainland, I came across Kouga's
tribe. Kouga was rather fond of me so he spared my life from his dumb wolves,"
Riquo said with laughter in her voice, "him and I have been friends ever since," she smiled
mischievously, "why Kagome? You interested in him?"
Riquo couldn't help but laugh out
loud as Inuyasha's golden eyes flashed and his growling got louder. Kagome
blushed and looked away. Riquo quirked an eyebrow, Huh, I think I
hit a sore spot there.
Kagome coughed nervously and decided
to try and change the subject, "Riquo you said your mother learned a
concealment spell from other demons in the future? How is that possible? I
thought all the demons would have died out by then and I know I should have been
able to sense them."
"Well, demons and half demons are
immortal until they are killed. And since they grew and developed along with
humans, they learned some very powerful concealment spells so they could hide
any demon traits."
Shippo hopped off Kagome's lap into
Riquo's and tugged on her arm, "What do you mean demons are immortal til they
are killed? I thought immortal meant they couldn't be killed."
Miroku decided to speak up, "What
she meant was that the only thing demons can't die from is old age, but if they
are killed in battle or perhaps murdered, then they can die if the wound is too
serious for them to heal on their own. Take Inuyasha for example," Inuyasha
growled, not wanting the attention, "he is about 66 years of age and he looks
like he's still a teenager."
Riquo decided to lighten the mood and
winked at Kagome and Sango. She turned to Inuyasha, "Wow, 66? You're kinda
old to be lookin' like that aren't ya?"
She couldn't help but laugh as
Inuyasha blushed furiously and 'hmphed.' He got up and walked out of the hut.
Riquo stared after him guiltily, "I hope I didn't upset him."
"Oh, don't worry about him, he just
gets cranky when he can't get his daily dose of shard hunting. He'll be ok. But
speaking of age, Riquo aren't you like...20ish?"
Riquo nodded, "Twenty-one to be
Sango stood and stretched, "Well
since Inuyasha needs time to cool off we can go into the hot springs nearby," Kagome
jumped up happily and tugged on Sango and Riquo. Riquo quirked an eyebrow,
didn't I just come from there?
Sango looked at Shippo who was
on Miroku's shoulder, "You'll watch the guys and make sure
they don't try and peek at us right?"
"Uh huh!" Shippo nodded happily
patting Miroku as he sighed in defeat, muttering something about trust. Sango
nodded her head at Shippo, glared a final warning at Miroku then walked out
after Riquo and Kagome, leaving Kaede with the two boys and Kilala bounding out
the door of the hut after them, disappearing in the sunlight.
Walking out in the cool air of the
day, the sky perfectly clear and beautiful, the girls began chattering to
themselves, "You don't have to worry about them
spying on us. Riquo should be able to sense everything they're doing from the hot
springs!" Kagome said excitedly, lacing her fingers with Riquo's and giggling,
"Yes! I'm so glad you're back Riquo I've missed you so much! This is gona be so
much fun! Just wait and see!"
Riquo laughed nervously wondering
what Kagome was plotting.
"WHERE DO YOU THINK YOU'RE GOING!!!!"
The three girls turned around to see
an extremely pissed off Inuyasha walking towards them.
"We're going to the hot springs and
we don't need your permission either Inuyasha!" Kagome yelled at him.
Inuyasha just glared at Kagome, "I
don't care where you're going! We already lost enough time saving this bitch
when we could have been out looking for shards!"
*sigh* Poor Inuyasha didn't even see
No sooner had Inuyasha said the last
word he was on his back in the dirt. Riquo had swiped Inuyasha's legs out from
underneath him so fast that neither Kagome
nor Sango saw it happen. Riquo turned around to face the two girls, "I'll catch up with you two
later, ok? I
need to have a word with Inuyasha."
Kagome and Sango just nodded, "You
remember where the spring is?"
Riquo nodded and turned back to
Inuyasha as Kagome and Sango
walked into the forest. When they were out of sight and hear shot Riquo walked over to him and straddled his waist.
Inuyasha's eyes squinted from the sunlight being in his face and then widened as he tensed under her,
what the hell is she doing? I just met her!!! He began to sweat and he gulped
back a retort. After a move like that he wasn't about to mouth off to her when
she had him where she wanted him. Riquo leaned over and whispered in Inuyasha's
ear, "I don't know why you're attitude towards me changed from the hot
spring to the hut, but I wouldn't continue to play mind games with me if I were
you," she pushed her hips down and heard him groan.
"What's the matter? Don't like being
Inuyasha's amber eyes looked up into her
green eyes and
smirked. Oh, she wants to play like that does she? Inuyasha
reached up and wrapped his hands around her waist. With one swift movement he
had turned over and pinned her under him. Riquo's eyes widened.
Inuyasha reached his hand down and
gently grabbed her tail. Riquo gasped and shivered.
Inuyasha leaned down and listened to
her start to purr, "Don't think you'll ever have control over me, wench.
I'm not going to play your games."
Riquo looked up at him through her
lashes, "Funny, I never saw you as the type to flirt and play games."
"Keh, you started it."
"Maybe, but you still stayed."
Inuyasha smirked down at her, then
leaned to whisper in her black ear, earning another shiver, "Too bad wench, I'm not
interested in your games."
Inuyasha got off of her and jumped off
into the trees. Riquo stared after him, then, mad as a hornet got up and stomped
off towards the hot spring. That arrogant, self-centered bastard!
How dare he insult me! Then she smiled to herself. Oh, if he
wants to be like that, then he'll get more than he can handle. She smiled as
she continued towards the spring.