Cats and Dogs
Chapter 9: Poof! Be Gone!

Inuyasha turned away from the battle that was about to start between Kikyo and Riquo. He knew Kikyo dying was best for them all, but it still hurt him inside. Inuyasha shook his head. Now was definitely not the time to be reminiscing on Kikyo and his past with her. Miroku and Sango stood with  him in the entrance of the palace.

"Inuyasha, can you sense Naraku?" Miroku asked quietly.

Inuyasha shook his head, "But he's sending all of his lesser demons out here...I can sense them coming. We should stay outside with the others. Naraku will have to show himself eventually."

With that, the trio turned around just in time to see thousands of demons flying towards them from above Naraku's palace. Inuyasha unsheathed tetusaiga, growling low in his chest. Sango had Hiraikotsu ready and Miroku pulled several sutras out from his robes.

Sango glanced at him nervously, "Miroku?"

The monk shook his head, "I fear that using my wind tunnel will only quicken my demise today. I shall use my holy powers in this final battle against Naraku."

Inuyasha and Sango exchanged curious glances. Miroku seemed unusually calm in this particular battle. Sango placed a hand on Miroku's shoulder in a comforting gesture, "We're going to get through this alive Miroku, I promise."

Miroku smiled, "I know we will my dear Sango."

The three of them turned to face the oncoming demons. Oddly enough, these demons seemed set on just coming after them, ignoring the battle that raged between Kouga and Kagura and also ignoring Kagome and Kilala as they avoided Kanna's soul-sucking mirror.

But Inuyasha noticed that a small group of demons broke off from the hoard that came towards them and started descending on where Kikyo and Riquo faced off several feet away from where he stood.

"RIQUO!" Inuyasha called out to her.

Riquo saw them. She saw them demons that had broken off from the rest and were coming up fast behind Kikyo. Kikyo didn't seem to notice them though so Riquo kept her guard up.

"So this is it eh Kikyo? Just you, me, a few demons...the final battle do the death."

"I assure you hanyou, this battle will be your demise."

Sango hitched up her boomerang, losing her patience, "What are we waiting for anyway? HIRAIKOTSU!" and with the last word escaping her lips Sango flung her weapon at the demons rushing towards them. Inuyasha waited for the boomerang to meet back up with Sango on the rebound before summoning the demonic winds and using his wind scar to demolish one hundred demons all at once.

Riquo tensed her body as Kikyo notched an arrow in her bow. She wasn't exactly sure how to go about fighting Kikyo. It seemed all too easy really. The only powers Kikyo had were her spiritual powers and the bow and arrow.

Before Riquo could attack, the demons behind Kikyo descended upon her, completely surrounding the startled priestess. Riquo could no longer see the dead priestess, but she heard her shouts from within the hoard of demons that surrounded her.

"What?! What's this?! Naraku you traitor! How dare you deceive me! NOOOO!!!"

Everyone on the battlefield in front of the castle paused to watch the demons devour the clay priestess. Riquo shielded her eyes as an immense explosion of light came from where Kikyo was. Before she knew what happened next, someone had grabbed her and turned her away from the light and was covering her with their body.

Ending as quickly as it had started, the light dissipated around the battlefield. Where Kikyo had once stood, there was nothing, priestess and demon alike were gone, all that was left were several glowing orbs. Riquo glanced up at her protector, which was of course, Inuyasha.

"She's gone. Naraku betrayed her."

Inuyasha nodded. The souls of the dead that had inhabited Kikyo's body started to ascend into the sky, while one floated lazily to where Kagome was on Kilala's back. Everyone watched breathlessly as the soul that would complete Kagome floated towards her.

But before it could reach her Kanna held up her mirror, using it to suck the soul in her direction.

"No! Kagome fire your arrow!" Riquo shouted.

Kagome strung her bow and fired, using her mental mantra to guide the arrow. The arrow flew true to its mark, cracking the mirror and shattering it, the broken pieces impaling Kanna's hands and withdrawing the mirror's hold on Kagome's rogue soul.

The soul flew towards Kagome's body at a much faster pace and slammed into her with such force Kilala had to maneuver to keep Kagome from falling off her body. Kagome was surrounded by a bright lavender hue for a few seconds, and then reverted back to normal. Kagome examined her body to see if any physical changes had occurred with her newly acquired soul but she was soon jarred out of her thoughts by Kagura's vicious winds.

"You witch! What have you done to my sister! You will pay with your life!"

Kagura raised her fan with malice in her eyes, "Now you will die! DANCE OF BLADES!"

Crescent moon lights formed from Kagura's wind and sped towards Kagome. Kilala reacted quickly to get out of the way but it was not enough. Both Kagome and Kilala were knocked to the ground as several blades passed over them.

"KAGOME!! NO!!!" Kouga sped as fast as he could over to where his Kagome was. He knelt next to her, wincing at the sight. Kagome's clothes were all but gone, and what was left was drenched in blood. She had cuts along her legs and her sides, her arms no better than the rest of her body, only her face remained unscathed. Kouga felt that she was still alive and strong, if not for that last piece of her soul entering her body, Kagome may have been killed.

Kagome coughed, "Kouga, I'm fine...just...let me rest."

Kouga nodded and scooted her body over to where Kilala lay panting. The fire cat had taken most of the beating but was already in the midst of healing herself. Inuyasha, Riquo, Sango and Miroku came running up to Kouga.

Riquo knelt next to her, "She lives, but she's definitely out of this battle."

They all nodded. Sango came forward and knelt next to her as well, "I'll stay with them. We  finished off the demons, all that's left is Kagura and Naraku, wherever he is--"

"Hey! Wolf! I'm not through with you! My orders are to kill you all! And I'm starting with you!"

Kouga growled and turned to face the wind sorceress he hated so much. Inuyasha stood as well, tetusaiga unsheathed and ready but Kouga raised his hand to stop him.

"She's mine Inuyasha."

Inuyasha lowered tetusaiga, understanding Kouga's desire for revenge of his comrades.

Kouga and Kagura began their usual fight. Kagura still standing on her high perch flinging every attack she knew and Kouga making a desperate attempt to dodge them.

Since Naraku seemed to stop sending his demon minions, the rest of the group soon got irritated just sitting back with an unconscious Kagome watching Kouga's futile attempts to kill Kagura. Sango stood up, having enough of waiting and unhitched her Hiraikotsu.

"Kagura! Enough of your games! HIRAIKOTSU!!!"

With that she flung Hiraikotsu directly at Kagura. But Kagura had better plans. She chuckled to herself, and raised her fan, spreading it apart as the giant boomerang flew over her head, missing by mere inches. The boomerang whirled on the rebound in the group's direction, but as it passed over her head Kagura snapped her magical fan shut. This caused all of the wind in the castle to die down, making the Hiraikotsu descend earlier than it was supposed to.

Before the giant boomerang hit the ground, Kagura spread open her fan, sweeping the weapon back up on the wind straight towards Kouga.

Kouga stuck his arms out in front of him and braced them for impact. Hiraikotsu hit with such force it pushed him back several feet, past Inuyasha and the rest so that they were between him and Kagura.

Kagura grinned maliciously and spread her fan further, increasing the power against the boomerang that kept it in motion and continuing to push Kouga back.

Riquo jumped up and sprinted over to Kouga, bracing herself against the boomerang right alongside him.

“Run,” she whispered.

“What?” he said, bewildered.

“Run against it! We can push it back at her with enough force!”

Kouga nodded and he started beating his legs against the ground. Riquo tightened her grip on the boomerang and started doing the same thing. Kagura scowled and widened her fan, applying more force to it against Kouga and Riquo.

Pushing themselves to the limit, Kouga and Riquo’s legs could barely be seen, they were moving so fast. They were both hunched over against this boomerang and slowly, it started to move back towards Kagura. She growled and widened her fan as far as it would go.

Riquo and Kouga simultaneously threw their heads back and roared, giving it all they had. With that, Inuyasha and the others watched in amazement as the boomerang launched away from them, heading straight for Kagura and knocking her off her perch.

Kouga and Riquo doubled over, both of them panting. Inuyasha quickly ran over to them while Sango went to retrieve her Hiraikotsu.

"Miroku, come with me please?"

Bewildered but willing, Miroku nodded and followed the demon slayer. She was planning something, he could tell by the serious tone in her voice and the way her eyes spoke of revenge.

Inuyasha knelt down next to Kouga and Riquo who were spread eagle on the ground, both of them panting heavily, “Are you two ok?”

Kouga and Riquo both shakily nodded. Inuyasha crouched on either side of them, helping them up and staggering them over to where Kagome lay against Kilala. Kouga collapsed on the opposite side of Kilala, his head almost linear with Kagome's, while Riquo managed to stagger and fall next to Kagome, Kilala lifting her two tails and draping it across Riquo's torso in a comforting gesture.

Kagome turned her head towards Riquo's panting form and laughed, holding out her hand, "Loko..."

Riquo laughed too, but winced at the pain it inflicted to her worn body. She blinked away the tears forming and threw out her fist to meet Kagome's, "Loko."

Inuyasha squatted down in between Kagome and Riquo, glancing momentarily at the wolf demon when he sensed him slip suddenly into unconsciousness.

"Kagome, did you see where Sango or Miroku went ?"

Kagome started to shake her head no when Sango and Miroku appeared from out behind one of the houses, "We're right here Inuyasha."

Inuyasha's eyes widened as the two began walking towards him. Sango had in fact retrieved her Hiraikotsu, but Miroku had Kanna flung over his shoulder, her bloody hands leaving a blood droplet path behind the two.

Inuyasha stood, "What's with the girl?"

Miroku laid Kanna down next to Riquo. Riquo growled and scooted herself closer to Inuyasha. Sango knelt next to Kanna and simply said, "Bait."

Riquo's eyes widened and she nodded. Sango was playing Naraku's game, she's using Kanna the way Naraku is using Kohaku.

Kagome glanced around from where she was laying, "So where's Naraku? And how are we to defeat him? Kikyo was supposed to "drag him into  hell with her" and now she isn't here to do that."

"Maybe that's why Naraku betrayed her. He knew her plan all along," Inuyasha said, shifting uncomfortably.

Riquo curled her tail around Inuyasha's ankle, feeling his discomfort. Inuyasha smiled from where he was and reached his hand down to entwine his fingers with hers.

Then, both Inuyasha and Riquo's ear swiveled in the direction of Naraku's castle. Sango and Miroku also felt the presence of someone moving about behind the castle and gripped their weapons.

From behind one of the many houses in Naraku's castle, Kagura staggered out, clutching her fan close to her heart.

She studied the scene before her, and when her eyes fell on the bloody form of Kanna she cried out, "You monster! What have you done to my sister!" She snapped her fan open to punctuate her anger.

Before anybody else could react, Sango had her katana drawn against Kanna's throat. Kagura's eyes widened at this and the wind picked up around the castle.

Sango pressed the katana harder against Kanna's throat, "KAGURA!"

Kagura saw this and lowered the strength of the wind. Having caught the wind sorceress's attention, Sango withdrew her sword marginally.

"Kagura, bring forth your fan."

Kagura snorted, "I will not bow down to-"

Sango pressed sword down again, "You are in no place to make demands Kagura! Your fan, NOW!!"

Riquo scooted her body closer to Kanna's, her movements going unnoticed to the slayer. Riquo eyed Sango, Kagura and then the katana. Kagura was slowly walking forward, her fan closed and her hands up in defense, but Riquo kept her locked in her gaze.

When Kagura reached them Sango held out her hand, and Kagura took the hint to drop fan into the slayer's awaiting palm. Sango, never taking her eyes off the wind sorceress, placed one end of the fan under her foot and broke it off with the half she was holding. She slowly stood then, tossing away the remains of the fan and raising her katana to Kagura's throat.

Sango narrowed her eyes upon the terrified demon, "Naraku. Where is he."

Kagura never took her eyes off the blade that was against her throat, and in her fear began to tremble and stutter. This didn't help her chances against the impatient slayer. Sango's eyes flashed as she pressed the blade closer to Kagura's throat.


It was at that moment that everyone watched in awe as Riquo leapt from where she lay and tackled Sango to the ground. She wrenched the katana out of Sango's hands and threw it to the ground next to her. Sango's eyes were wide with awe at what had just happened.

"What is the matter with you?! Can't you see, she is the enemy and our only chance to get to Naraku!"

They were standing now, Riquo walking towards Sango until she was directly in her face. Riquo narrowed her eyes and snorted, "You are no different from Naraku."

Sango gasped, along with everyone else that was watching. Even Kagura looked shocked at what was being said. Sango regained some of her dignity after gaping at Riquo and glared her eyes at Riquo in an attempt to pierce her with just her eyes.

"How dare you say such a thing-"

She was inadvertently cut off as Riquo started growling low in her chest, the sound escalating with every passing second.

"You are only stooping to his level Sango! Naraku is a monster, and now you're using his tactics to get your way? I figured you were smarter than that."

Sango narrowed her eyes and looked away in a huff but said nothing. Satisfied that Sango had composed herself, Riquo turned her attention back to Kagura. Back to the enemy.

Riquo crossed her arms and pierced Kagura straight through, the wind sorceress practically falling to pieces in fear. Riquo quirked an eyebrow, "So...where is he?"

Kagura gulped back the bile in her throat in an attempt to hold herself in check. She was completely vulnerable to these people without her weapon and any attempt to escape would only leave her and Kanna dead.

"H-he's in the b-basement of t-he castle."

At this point the tension had eased up a little bit and Inuyasha stood, placing himself behind Riquo, awaiting more from Kagura.

Seeing that they wanted more from her she said, "Tonight is the night Naraku turns into his human form. That's why you cannot sense him as strongly. That is also why you don't have more demons attacking you, Naraku doesn't have the energy to summon more of his minions," Kagura gulped nervously again, "that's also why Kikyo summoned you here I suppose, and why Naraku destroyed her."

Riquo nodded, satisfied with the information they'd just received. It might actually happen this time, she mused, they might actually get rid of him once and for all.

Sighing with anticipation, Riquo nodded at Kagura, "Thank you for your help Kagura. If I keep in mind the fact that I sense Naraku has superior control over you, I'd say your actions against us were done against your will, am I correct?"

Kagura nodded shakily. Inuyasha stepped up behind Riquo, placing an arm around her shoulder and finishing her thoughts for her, "We have no more use for you wench, leave now before we change our minds."

Riquo rolled her eyes, not exactly my thoughts but ok.

Kagura snorted, kneeling next to Kanna to check the pale girl's pulse, "As much as I'd like to fly off on my happy little feather and disappear from this part of the world completely, I can't."

"Why?" Sango asked bitterly from where she stood.

Kagura glanced pointedly at her, "Because like this hanyou girl has said, Naraku controls me and Kanna. He holds our hearts in the palm of his hand and can kill us whenever he pleases. I cannot flee and as much as I'd like to, I cannot fight along side you either."

"So what will you do?" Miroku, who had been silent throughout the entire scenario, piped in.

Kagura glanced down at the fire cat with the two people propped up against her body and her sister who was still unconscious.

"I can stay here, with my sister and your two friends. I will not harm them, you have my word."

Miroku and Sango glanced nervously at each other. Riquo and Inuyasha contemplated this silently to themselves. Riquo pursed her lips in thought. True, Kagura doesn't have anywhere she can go, and Kagome and Kouga are out of the battle because of their wounds. And Kilala....

Riquo glanced at Kilala and smirked. The fire cat lifted her head at the attention and made a small whining noise in the back of her throat.

Riquo nodded her head curtly, "Fine. Inuyasha, Miroku and Sango, we'll go into the palace to defeat Naraku," Riquo walked over to Kilala and patted the two-tail on the head, "Kilala, if Kagura makes even the slightest move of betrayal, kill  her. And then take Kouga and Kagome back to Kaede's village. Understand?"

Kilala nodded her head and growled in Kagura's direction. The others gathered their things in preparation for the upcoming battle. This was it. This was the moment that all of them had dreamt about, tossing and turning in their sleep at the inkling that maybe...just maybe, they would get a clean shot at defeating Naraku...and now it was here.

Riquo patted Kilala on the head again and then walked over to where Inuyasha was waiting. She wrapped her arm around his waist and gave him a light squeeze, "You ready to go?"

He nodded, "Come on you guys."

And then they were off. Riquo and Inuyasha walking close together, Sango and Miroku behind them. All four of them had different prospects of this battle running through their heads. Inuyasha was blood thirsty and vengeful. Although Kikyo was his past and their love was lost, he still wanted revenge for Naraku murdering Kikyo and tearing them apart, regardless if Inuyasha got the better end of that situation.

Riquo was also vengeful but for some reason her thoughts kept having a savage kick to them. Her mind could only register one thing. Naraku was weak and easy to kill. And kill she wanted to do. Riquo shook her head of these thoughts, she didn't understand what was happening to her, but she had to keep control in this battle if they wanted to be the victors.

Inuyasha glanced down where Riquo walked next to him, "You ok?"

Riquo smiled at him, "Just anticipating this battle, that's all."

They reached the front entrance to the inside of the castle, where Naraku's stench was getting stronger and stronger. Now it would be easy to use Naraku's scent to guide there way to the basement, where the human Naraku lay weak and defenseless.

Inuyasha led the way, going through several hallways and doorways, even ending up back outside before entering into another section of the castle. Naraku's scent was definitely getting stronger. Yet, oddly enough the miasma that usually was so strong around Naraku and the castle was weak, attributing to the fact that Naraku was indeed human on this night.

Miroku glanced around nervously from his place behind the two hanyou's. Not only could he sense Naraku's presence but that stench was unbearable. Miroku placed his hand over his nose, only to remove it when he felt the smooth, cold texture of the rosary beads that withheld his wind tunnel. Miroku stared unnervingly at his cursed hand, it's almost over, today just might be the day that I am rid of this cursed wind tunnel.

As she followed behind, glancing around nervously, Sango's thoughts were still on her brother Kohaku. At this point, she didn't even know if it was possible for Kohaku to be kept alive after Naraku was defeated. That jewel shard would have to be removed eventually. Then again, Sango wasn't even sure if she wanted Kohaku to be alive.

The demon slayer sighed, true she missed her brother dearly, but those memories...the memories of that fateful day...she wasn't sure if she wanted Kohaku to remember what happened. He might be better off not suffering.

Suddenly Inuyasha stopped and sniffed around. They were in a small hallway, which forced them to walk single file, Inuyasha in front of course.

"What is it Inuyasha?" Miroku asked.

"He's here," Inuyasha growled.

All at once all four of them looked down at their feet. Underneath Riquo's feet was a trap door with a large knob on one side of it serving as a handle. Riquo backed up so everybody else could get a better look.

Inuyasha snorted, "What kind of idiot is he? Thinking this pathetic excuse of a door is going to prote-"

Inuyasha cried out as he made the fatal mistake of stomping his foot on the door. It was only made of wood and broke easily under his weight and the force he put behind it.

"Inuyasha!!" Riquo, Miroku and Sango gathered around the square hole in the floor to see Inuyasha land on something soft and slimy. Inuyasha immediately placed his sleeved arm over his nose, the stench making him want to vomit.

"Inuyasha! Are you alright?!" Riquo cried down from above him.

Inuyasha looked around momentarily before answering. The entire room, which was huge, was filled with several different body parts of different demons, all of them wet and slimy and reeking of something rancid. As Inuyasha's eyes roamed around the room, they widened in shock when they found what they were looking for.

"Riquo," Inuyasha said in a serious tone, "get down here with Miroku and Sango."

Riquo landed down behind Inuyasha, and made an attempt to move aside to allow Miroku and Sango to jump down but not wanting to step on anything that was moving in the basement. Riquo as well as Miroku and Sango followed Inuyasha's line of vision to the end of the room, where only Naraku's head was hanging, connected by several tentacles that branched off into the different demon appendages.

"Inuyasha," Naraku rasped, "how shocking to see you here...I should have known Kikyo would betray me."

Inuyasha angrily unsheathed tetusaiga, accidentally knocking Riquo off balance into Miroku behind her. Riquo nodded her thanks to the monk as she regained her balance and stood shakily next to the large fang that is Inuyasha's sword.

"This is it, Naraku. Not even a completed jewel could save you now!" Inuyasha shouted.

Naraku's face quickly altered from one of confidence to one of fear, "Inuyasha, listen maybe we can come to an agreement. If I hand over all of my portion of the sacred jewel, and you don't kill me, I swear I'll never bother any of you again!"

Riquo stepped forward gaping, and then hysterical laughing, "You really are a fool Naraku! You've tormented humanity for years! And you expect us to grant you your life while you're on your deathbed?? You must be insane!"

Inuyasha nudged Riquo back behind him with the tetusaiga, "Enough talk, Naraku this is it. You're through."

Inuyasha raised the tetusaiga, preparing his wind scar with all the power he could muster. His saw his demonic wind pick up as well as Naraku's. Miroku and Sango grinned excitedly, grasping each other's hand, Miroku placing a hand on Riquo's shoulder. But something wasn't right. Riquo looked behind them and in front of them again. Naraku's "body" was surrounding them, as well as his demonic wind. Which meant...

Riquo watched in horror as Inuyasha raised tetusaiga in its final peak before striking down. Her survival instincts kicking in, Riquo whipped around and grabbed both Sango and Miroku around the waist and leapt through the square trap door above them, all three of them barely getting through, and took off as fast as she could.


"Riquo!!! What the hell are you doing!?" Miroku shouted above the noise in the basement behind them.

"This entire castle is going to explode with that attack!!!" Riquo ran as fast as she could, her adrenaline pushing her to the limit, she ran the entire distance from the basement to the front of the castle.

As she predicted, the castle exploded in a burst of blue light, hurling Riquo and her passengers away from the entrance of the castle towards where Kagome and Kouga lay.

Riquo wrenched her eyes shut, feeling dirt and rocks bite into her skin as she lost her grip on Miroku and Sango and went tumbling forward. She finally landed on her face in the ground and immediately through her arms over her head, feeling that the explosion behind her had not died down yet.

After several moments of silence Riquo lifted her head cautiously and looked around. Everything around her was covered in debris. Kilala was standing several feet away from her, two bodies huddled underneath her and two bodies crouched behind her. Several wolves and men were on the edge of the forest at a onlooker's distance, telling her that Kouga's tribe had arrived. But Riquo also felt another presence...a strong demonic presence...

Riquo rolled over onto her back, coughing up dirt and wincing as rocks and wood bit into her skin. She peeked open her eyes when she felt that strong demonic presence's footsteps next to her body. Glancing up, Riquo gaped as Sesshomaru himself stood over her, staring down at her.

Riquo stared at him and then looked around. I hope Miroku and Sango are safe. No sooner had the thought entered her mind she heard someone shouting. Riquo and Sesshomaru both looked over to see Miroku gaping at his hand, Sango kneeling next to him.

"It's gone!! We did it!! It's really gone!!" He scooped Sango up in his arms and swung her around, laughing happily.

Riquo smiled, tears escaping her eyes. She looked back up at Sesshomaru to see him staring down at her. Then, he did something she would never expect someone of his stature to do: he held out his hand to her.

Riquo stared at him again before shakily lifting her hand to his. Once he grasped her hand, Riquo winced at the effort. Sesshomaru bent down and used his knee to steady her back against, then helped her to stand.

"It is finished then?"

Riquo nodded. Tears dripped down her face as she stared at what was left of the castle, "Inuyasha," she cried out.

Riquo winced at the pain that seared through her entire body, "Kilala," she called out, "come here please."

She opened her eyes when she felt the large wet nose against her hand and the gentle whine that Kilala always emitted. Riquo slowly lowered herself to face Kilala, "Help me find him, Kilala, help me find Inuyasha."

Kilala nodded, whining softly again. She lowered her body and allowed Riquo to ease herself onto the demon cats back. Sighing from the effort Riquo took another glance at the scene behind her before she went off.

Sesshomaru was still next to her for some reason. Kouga was awake with an unconscious Kagome in his lap. Kagura and Kanna were sitting a little ways away, and Miroku and Sango were still dancing happily next to Kouga.

"Miroku, Sango, Kouga," Riquo called out.

All three of them looked up at her, delight shining in all of their eyes before it faded when they caught sight of Sesshomaru. Riquo shook her head, signaling for them to ignore Sesshomaru, "I'm going to look for Inuyasha."

"I'll come with you," Sango said, starting to walk forward.

Riquo shook her head, "I'll be ok, just watch over everyone," Sango nodded.

Riquo then turned her attention to Sesshomaru, "Lord Sesshomaru," she said, using his proper title so as not to offend him.

Sesshomaru raised an eyebrow, signaling she had his attention. Riquo coughed, "What are you doing here?"

"I came to fight Naraku, but it appears that my little brother has already done so, and messy as usual."

Riquo nodded, "All that matters is that it's over. I am going to go look for him."

"Your grandfather fought in battle with my father," Sesshomaru said ignoring her statement, "he was a fine warrior."

Riquo stared at him. Sesshomaru nodded in the direction of the castle, relaxing his stance. Riquo gasped a little and smiled, relaxing as well. This was Sesshomaru's way of accepting her as a hanyou and as a cat. She knew he would watch over everyone.

Kilala gently lifted herself into the air and flew over the center of the castle. Riquo looked over the remains, examining what was what and trying to determine exactly where the blast had come from.

"Down there Kilala," Riquo pointed directly down, a little leftward from the castle's center point.

Kilala landed on what used to be a piece of roof, balancing herself as the roof started to sway. Riquo hopped off her back, holding on to Kilala's neck for support.

"You sense him too don't you Kilala."

Kilala whined in response and began to move forward. They walked through piles of rubble and debris until Kilala came to another section of roof. She knelt down and sniffed before whining happily.

"Well let's get him outa there, Kilala! Come on, help me out here."

Kilala stuck her shoulder underneath the roof and used her body strength to lift the section of roof. Shifting her body, she then stood on her hind legs and held up the roof with her paws. Riquo knelt underneath the roof and gasped.

Inuyasha was covered in blood, his and possibly Naraku's. He was also unconscious but still tightly held tetusaiga in his grasp. Riquo dragged him out from underneath the section of roof, allowing Kilala to drop her heavy load.

Riquo knelt down next to Inuyasha, propping his head into her lap. She studied his face, stroking away his bloodstained hair. He was alive, thank kami he was alive. But his body was badly wounded.

Riquo stroked his cheek, "Inuyasha? Inuyasha..."

Riquo jumped as Inuyasha's silver ears swiveled at the sound of her voice. His eyelids started scrunching up, as Inuyasha began to painfully wake up.

When Inuyasha finally opened his eyes, he was greeted by two large green eyes staring down at him, with two larger red eyes off to the side staring as well.

Inuyasha sighed, knowing for once he could relax, "Oh, Riquo...we did it."

Riquo smiled, wiping away the tears that drifted down her cheeks, "No Inuyasha, you did it. You defeated Naraku."

Inuyasha smiled before his face shifted to an expression of pain, "Kohaku...he was...behind....Naraku...I couldn't...couldn't time..."

Riquo's ears drooped in sadness. She knew how much Kohaku's life tormented Sango, she just didn't know how she was going to break the news to her. Riquo shook her head, shifting her body so she could lay herself across Inuyasha's chest. Inuyasha draped one of his arms across her shoulder, giving her a light squeeze.

"Sesshomaru's here," Riquo said, avoiding the subject of Kohaku.

Inuyasha nodded, "I know," he said, not seeming to care.

"What about the jewel shards that Naraku had?"

"They're here somewhere, I can smell them. Kagome will find them though."

"She's unconscious."

Inuyasha sighed, stroking Riquo's arm, "Then we'll wait...Kilala?"

Riquo snuggled closer to Inuyasha's chest as Kilala levitated them into the air to fly them back to where the others were. Yes, yes...we'll wait.

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