Painfully Unnamed

BY : LittleSeedofDarkness
Category: InuYasha > Yaoi - Male/Male > InuYasha/Sessh?maru > InuYasha/Sessh?maru
Dragon prints: 2746
Disclaimer: Disclaimer: I do not own InuYasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale, or any of the characters in it. I do not make any money from this either.

Disclaimer: I do not own InuYasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale, or any of the characters in it. I don't make any money from this either.

Painfully Unnamed

Lost to Me

He twisted his head, nose catching that unmistakable non-scent that had ingrained itself in his mind all those years ago. It was only once that he had glimpsed that 'thing', that thing that had ruined his life twenty years ago, but he knew the telltale sign of its presence. The destruction, the off scent, that odd 'wrong' feeling that shivered up his spine when he knew it was near or it had once again wreaked havoc with no rhyme or reason.

He had been searching for it for the better part of the last two decades, only to find it intermittently, usually going years futilely looking for some clue as to its next target or location. A handful of times it had been months, but mostly years between any shred of contact or clue. As useless as it had all seemed, it was the only thing that truly kept him going at this point in his immortal life. The only thing that thrust him back from delving into that dark place; that long portion of his life when he had no purpose other than survival. The time between the death of his mother and his relationship with the kind Miko who saw something in him that he did not. At times, he found himself wondering if he should have simply used that wish to finally become a full demon, perhaps he wouldn't feel as empty as he did now, but he wouldn't trade the time he had lived in relative happiness for that. Even if it meant he had to endure the feelings he now did.

Of course, any short time of happiness and purpose that he had was always inevitably torn from him through no malicious intention of his own. First the trickery that's final outcome left him sealed to a tree for fifty years. As much as no fault lay directly upon him, it never had absolved him of the feeling that he should have known, that he missed something, that terrible 'if only' feeling.

He had suffered that time in purgatory, suffered the loss, in more ways than one. After so long wandering through some dream-like state he was finally 'saved' once again. He went through so much with the reincarnation of Kikyou; Kagome. Finding a new love (though torn about his past), having a clan he could call his own, their defeat of Naraku, and finally a happy life of peace with someone he loved. It lasted a decade before that day which would forever be seared into his heart.

As usual, Kagome would travel back to the future, to her time. Usually for supplies; luxuries not available in the feudal era. Inuyasha had done as always; said goodbye and then attended to things like chopping firewood or hunting. He was finishing up the chores he had set for himself that day when he felt a low hum, and the hair on the back of his neck had stood on end. Even in the presence of Naraku the energy had not felt so utterly 'wrong' and surreal. This was entirely different; it was as if he had walked through the gates of Hell themselves, it didn't feel as if he was even in reality anymore.

He stood still, the presence of whatever malevolent energy this was, feeling quite oppressive, his eyes darting nervously, nose gathering scent as his hand twitched towards his sword. It took every ounce of energy he possessed to overcome the odd sensation and pull Tessaiga from its sheath, preparing to cleave whatever evil this was. He was almost about to scream from the unbroken tension when the thing rose out of the ground as a spirit would move through a wall. A mass of blackened spines so dark it was as if it absorbed all the light nearby, pulsing slowly with what seemed to be breath, but Inuyasha knew this creature did not breathe. Once it had cleared the ground Inuyasha found himself frozen, eyeing the pulsing thing, his urge to attack only paused within him by the wholly overwhelming energy this creature exuded.

Moments felt like hours as he tried to regain his senses and normal faculties before the thing seemed to shrink in on itself and spun away, flying off toward the village. The fog in his mind lifted slightly as he realized the danger the people nearby would be in. And Kagome, what if Kagome returned now? The thing hadn't attacked him, but he knew it was dangerous, and 'strange'. He didn't like strange, he didn't like not knowing his enemy, and that horrid feeling that accompanied this being had chilled him to bone. It was the screams and cries that had finally spurred him enough to push through that odd sensation and take off toward the village.

He had expected to see the normal carnage any demon, or band of thugs would leave in their wake, but this was different, there were no flames, no blood, no broken homes or broken people; just stunned horrified looks and the bodies of various villagers on the ground. They weren't cut to pieces or stabbed, just lying on the ground, their faces' peaceful as if in sleep. He wanted to check on these people, and on his friends, but he could still feel the presence. He knew it was nearby, but what could it possibly want? He ran towards the well, worrying once again for his wife, she would have no idea what she was coming home to. As the well came into sight he saw the thing materialize out of seemingly nothing before it darted smoothly over to the well. His legs pushed harder as he tried to close the distance, only to see the creature suck what appeared to be light from the door to her time and dart away. He watched it become smaller and smaller against the sky, as it moved away from the village at incredible speed and finally disappeared.

Inuyasha knew the creature was truly gone; that awful feeling that accompanied its presence had abated, and he was grateful that Kagome had not yet arrived. Regardless, he would go retrieve her now. Perhaps she would have some insight into what this thing could be, maybe she would feel something and explain just what it had been doing there. He slowed his run slightly before vaulting over the side of the well, and jumping inside.

Once again that day he had a feeling that something was 'wrong', and his heart jumped when his feet hit the dusty bottom and he knew he had traveled nowhere. He could still hear villagers, and that familiar sound of the future was absent. She couldn't come back…

XxXxX

Inuyasha had been haunted every day since by that memory. It had taken many months before he was finally able to pull himself away from the village and the well. He had sought out many in those early days who may have some idea of why the magic was gone, hoping somehow it could be returned, but deep down he knew. He knew as soon as he made it to the bottom that night that the thing had taken the energy that enabled the well to cross time and that unless he destroyed the creature it would never return. Even now he wasn't sure it would reactivate the door to Kagome's time, but what else did he have to do but try? The prospect of waiting five hundred years to find her in what for him was the future was too painful to bear.

He pulled himself back from the memories, there was no reason to dwell on them at the moment, and certainly not now, when he knew the thing was nearby. He walked slowly through trees seeing a small lakeside village in the distance. He already knew it had been there; hearing the cries of the villagers long before he could see the lights in the distance. Once again the thing had caused death and destruction with no obvious purpose.

It would be the same as it always was. Random members of the community dead, descriptions of a sort of "glow" drawn from the victims before they dropped dead to the ground. He often stayed to help dispose of those who had been lost, and see if there was more information to be gathered, but usually ended up no further ahead in his investigations. All he could surmise at this point was that the thing sucked away some sort of energy in what appeared to be a completely random pattern. There seemed to be no connection from one victim or object to another.

What puzzled Inuyasha was that there seemed to be no reason for the creature to be attacking and taking this energy. It wasn't as if it was gathering strength then attacked, it simply attacked and left. Even stranger still was the fact that most of the witnesses had gotten nary a glimpse of the thing, and no one had tried to fight it. Not that many humans would have a chance to do so, but Inuyasha had found that didn't often stop humans in their futile attempts, especially when it came to vengeance and the like. There was also the lack of superstition about the thing. Normally he had found that humans were ready to blame even the most mundane occurrences on demons or spirits, but not this. At least if they had done so he might have had a starting point. The only thing that felt like a clue were reports of the villagers experiencing a foggy and ominous feeling, though none reported anything nearly as strong as what Inuyasha had experienced.

He wasn't sure what the reason for that was, maybe it was because he wasn't completely human or possibly being a hanyou was what caused it. He thought it was a strong possibility that it might be the case considering he had never come in contact, nor heard of a demon being attacked by or succumbing the thing.

After speaking with the villagers and assisting them in moving the dead from the streets he continued on his way. Circling the village carefully, using his extrasensory perception to pick up any clue as to which direction the creature had gone. He noticed very little that would tell him what way he should go, so once again depended on what his instincts told him. He couldn't explain why, but he felt that the thing had moved towards the north.

Inuyasha had traveled for the rest of the day, he had glimpsed a few settlements along the way, and had investigated them, but to both his disappointment and relief there was no evidence the thing had caused any trouble in the direction he had gone. Deciding it was best to stop for the night he made his way across a long stretch of open plains toward a forest. It never paid to sleep out in the open. Of course, he could protect himself just fine against almost any threat, but he still slept lightly as he didn't want to be caught off guard. And light sleep was far less restful than sleeping in a safer area.

As he had always done when out in the elements, he chose a tree to use for the night. It was a habit that had never died, and to him it made sense. He was not only hidden, but he had the jump on any danger that may come along. The one he had found was perfect, it was on the edge of the copse of trees with a tall wide canopy. He found a large branch he could easily get comfortable on, but he could easily see anything that was going on below him as well, as no small branches and leaves obstructed the view.

He settled in, replaying the events from earlier in the day and the night before in the lakeside village. There was nothing new, always the same series of events that frustrated him to no end. The thing, the deaths, the seeming theft of energy… and then it just left. After a couple hours, he had decided thinking on it would be a waste of valuable sleeping time, and he would have plenty of time to contemplate it the next day when he returned to his travels.

XxXxX

It had only been a few hours when Inuyasha was awoken. There was no alarming sound or movement, but he felt as if he was being watched. The feeling was similar to the one the creature left him with but almost as if it was farther away, as if it was a shadow of itself. He stood, sniffing the air, not understanding why he did this as the thing had no normal scent, just a strange 'staleness'. His hair blew across his face as the wind kicked up and his eyes searched the darkness for what had gotten his hackles up.

It began almost as a whisper, so faint that he wasn't sure if he had heard an actual sound or if he was imagining it, but as he left the tree and his feet hit the ground he felt a vibration. It certainly matched in beat the sound he thought he had heard. He placed his hand on the hilt of his sword, pulling his father's gift only a few inches from its sheath. He knew he needed to be ready, but he didn't want to pull the sword just yet. It gave off an immense amount of energy that could easily be detected by many demons and even some humans. There was no way to sneak up on whatever this was if he gave away his location by being too hasty. This was a lesson he had learned during his time battling Naraku and his minions. It didn't always pay to be reckless and show your hand right away, sometimes one needed stealth and patience.

He moved slowly, keeping near the trees as he made his way to the edge of the forest. If whatever was lurking was watching, it would see him immediately upon entering the open area and that was not what Inuyasha wanted.

He finally came to a stop, pressing himself up against one of the trees at the edge of the forest, drawing in information with all his senses. The sound he barely heard earlier had now become a low-level vibration, and had intensified since he'd first noticed it. He wasn't sure if he heard it or not, but he most definitely felt it now as it met his feet and rose up through his body. If he hadn't known better he would have mistaken the vibration for that of large low drums, but there were no villages nearby, and no reason for humans to come out into the wilds in the middle of the night to play music. Even the strange rituals the humans often partook in didn't require them to do something that could be so utterly dangerous.

The vibration intensified, and he surveyed his surroundings, amber eyes glinting as he squinted into the distance. Something was definitely off, and something was definitely here, but where? It wasn't long before his question was answered as he felt that familiar feeling that only assaulted him when the thing was near. He wondered if this was serendipitous that he had decided to bed down in an area near the creature, or if it had followed him. It seemed all too coincidental that he would run into it again so quickly. He had never chanced upon its location that quickly after running into an area it had been through. His suspicions heightened when the thing rose out of the ground only about one hundred meters from him. It spun almost 180 degrees as if it was turning to face him, but he was sure it had no face or eyes. The entirety of it looked just as it had twenty years before, a giant, black, spiny mass about the size of a villager's home.

Regardless of the foggy disturbing feeling that had descended upon him, Inuyasha was going to attack the thing. He didn't know it's purpose, whether it was malicious or not, or what its intentions were, but it had destroyed the door to Kagome's time, and it had killed countless innocent people, and he was going to destroy it. It was the only chance he had of getting back to the future and at the very least allowing him to travel to the modern world and see Kagome again.

"Hey asshole!" he yelled before pulling Tessaiga fully from its sheath and running at the thing. He thought for a moment how stupid he had been to alert it that he was going to attack it, but it mattered not. Maybe it didn't have ears and couldn't hear him to begin with. It made no difference now; he was at a full run, and milliseconds from leaping up at the thing.

Simultaneously, as he flew up in the air, he watched as the thing began to spin so fast he couldn't make out its spines anymore, and heard a familiar voice.

"You fool!"

He turned his head to the right where the voice had come from, instantly regretting his decision as a long spiny black 'arm' darted out from the creature and tossed him aside.

He lay on the ground trying quickly to recover, but felt as if every last ounce of energy had been stolen from him. His vision blurred and he was sure his other senses were completely useless. Through the haze he saw something long and black coming straight toward him, he tried to roll away unsuccessfully before he felt his body pulled to the left and the ground shake as the 'arm' hit the earth where he had laid mere seconds before. He had no time to contemplate what had moved him as he felt himself whisked away at a speed that was impossible for him to travel at by foot.

"As usual, you put aggressive action before thought, Little Brother."

It was terrible that he had been stupid enough to allow his emotions to get the best of him and lead him to make a terrible miscalculation, but it was wholly more awful that his brother had not only witnessed it, but rescued him. He tried to form words, wanting to ask his cold older brother what he was doing in the area, and toss in an insult of sorts, but no words would form. He had already chided him, and Inuyasha was powerless to defend himself or to even call him a name.

He supposed he should be grateful, but this was Sesshomaru, and though the two of them didn't have the same rivalry they used to for the last few decades, he wasn't about to start showing respect or much gratitude to him. Especially not when he had scolded him like a child.

"Undoubtedly, your energy has been drained to a point that you cannot speak. I can only assume this is the case, as you have not hurled a childish insult at me, nor tried to defend your reckless actions." Sesshomaru loosely held his brother over his shoulder as he ran farther to the north hoping to put distance between them and the creature. He was unsure of what it exactly was, but he knew it was not safe to blindly battle with it.

He had been tracking whatever it was for several months now, and sensed his brother in the area. Knowing Inuyasha's ability to always find trouble he had assumed his reasons for being so close to its proximity was not a coincidence. His instincts had been proven correct when he felt a change in the area's energy and saw that blur of red hurling insults before flying through the air at the thing.

The entire situation was bothersome, but even he had to admit that seeing his brother once again doing what he always did was somewhat refreshing. Life had been boring for quite a while. He had his selfish exploits for power in his younger years after his father had died, then Naraku to contend with, but after the spider had been defeated he found his priorities were not the same. He had spent the next several years wandering, occasionally contending with business in the Western Lands, and periodically checking on Rin. She had been married and living on a neighboring island for almost twenty years now, and there was no longer a reason for him to keep a regular watch over her. She had her own life and family, just like he wanted for her. It brought him a sense of peace and happiness, but he had no aim anymore, and life had turned slightly mundane.

He had quickly put a good bit of distance between he and Inuyasha and the creature, but the Daiyokai could still feel the energy from the thing, and he knew that meant it was in pursuit. It would follow them unceasingly if he couldn't get away from it. Transforming into energy was not possible at this point as he wouldn't be able to carry his brother, and based on his own suspicions about the creature he wasn't sure changing his form to that of a ball of his yokai was a good idea either. The only option he had was to either eventually face the creature with an incapacitated Inuyasha or transform into his full demon form. It was also a risk, but one he couldn't afford not to take.

"This situation requires I transform, Inuyasha. I suggest you secure yourself."

Inuyasha had barely registered much since Sesshomaru had intercepted him, but his brother's words came through well enough that he knew he should heed them. He didn't know what exactly was going on, but he was too weak to argue or fight (as much as he wanted to). He grasped a handful of Mokomoko and prepared himself for whatever was ahead.

Feeling his brother grab the furry appendage that adorned him, Sesshomaru allowed himself to transform. His yokai flared, and he felt the odd sensation of bones and muscle elongating and growing as he changed into his pure demon form. Large paws hit the ground, and legs surged as he made his way to the borders of his lands. If he could make it there the power within would surely repel whatever that thing was and they could regroup.

Sesshomaru wasn't one to run from a fight, but he knew this thing was different. It was like nothing he had ever encountered before, and he wasn't about to make stupid mistakes. He had learned to stay his hand and not fly blindly into battle.

He began to feel the energy recede as he distanced he and Inuyasha from the creature. It would be no problem for him to make it well inside the borders of his lands before he could relax and put Inuyasha down. He wouldn't go all the way to the castle as it may be a mistake to draw the thing there, but there was an area of power not far off that would help shield them even if the thing was capable of following.

It was near dawn's light before Sesshomaru reached their destination and returned to his humanoid form. He heaved Inuyasha off his back and set him on the ground. He wasn't very gentle, but resisted tossing him. The boy needed to be startled at least slightly after his terrible decision.

"You didn't have to throw me, you ass," Inuyasha complained as he hit the ground. Finally, enough energy had returned that he could speak and move again.

"I did not throw you, and be grateful I did not leave you after your carelessness, Inuyasha." Sesshomaru merely glared at him. His brother was so infuriating, he should at the very least say 'thank you' for his generosity.

That was enough to send Inuyasha into a rant, "you know, I don't remember asking for your help. I don't even know what you were doing there. Me and that thing have a score to settle. I've been looking for it for twenty years, and you screwed up my one chance to kill it!"

"You would not have killed it, Inuyasha. You would be quite dead at this moment had I not intervened."

"And how do you know, Sesshomaru? Everything can be killed! Some things are harder to kill than others, but everything can die!" Inuyasha was in a rage now as the situation finally set in. He had seen the thing for the second time in his life, he had waited years, and Sesshomaru had pulled him away from the fight.

"Tell me, little brother… what exactly is that entity? You seem so sure you could destroy it; therefore, you must know what it is." Sesshomaru was not in the mood to play this game with his brother. Inuyasha was angry, and as usual not thinking straight because of that anger. The elder of the two wasn't sure why his brother held such a grudge about the thing, but it was obviously leading him to his usual irrationality.

Inuyasha resisted the urge to just scream out that he had no idea what the thing was doing and that he didn't know what it was. Part of him wanted to say it was a demon, but he knew it wasn't, and he knew Sesshomaru would know that as well. He also wanted to know if his brother had any further insight, but he didn't want to ask. He had to think of something to say and quick. "What do you think it is, dickhead?"

"Answering a question with a question. I will take this as an admission that you do not know what the entity is. As usual you refuse to cooperate or divulge anything for fear it weakens you in my eyes. Be advised, Little Brother, it does not, and I refuse to delve into these childish circles with you. If I knew what it was I would have said as much, and not have asked. I had already suspected that you have no more insight currently than do I."

So Sesshomaru didn't know what it was either, and had admitted it to him. Part of him wanted to mock him for the admission, but he knew it was immature and would get them nowhere. In addition, his brother hadn't truly treated him badly in this situation, and he had actually been honest with him. He looked down at the ground, not able to look his older brother in the eye. "You're right… I don't know what it is. Twenty years ago, it did something to the Bone Eater's Well. Kagome was unable to return. I've looked for it since then. It kills people, it takes energy from them I think, and I don't know why, but I know killing it is my only chance to open that door again."

So, that is why he hadn't seen the miko. Sesshomaru had not happened upon his brother many times in the last twenty years, but when he had, he had been alone. He had assumed the girl went back to her time, knowing she didn't belong where she was, and likely desiring the children a hanyou was incapable of ever giving her. He was unaware that the well had been closed, especially since Rin hadn't resided in the village for a good twenty-five years. He didn't care so much about hurting Inuyasha's feelings, but he also didn't want to deal with a tantrum from him, or that insufferable depression it seemed he could fall into.

"It was only two seasons ago that I encountered the entity. I was unaware of your experiences with it."

That was probably the closest thing to sympathy that Inuyasha was ever going to get from his brother, and as much as he simply wanted to hit him and take out his anger on the Daiyokai, he couldn't see a reason to. Sesshomaru really hadn't done anything awful to him in a long time, and in his own 'Sesshomaru way', he had just opened himself up. There was no reason not to offer what information he had and cooperate with his brother. "Okay, what did it do in the Western Lands?"

"It caused problems in both a village and in one of the forests in the area. Not far from here, to the east, it killed over fifty people. In the forest, it killed an entire clan of fox demons. At first I believed it was one of the clans attempting to cause disruption within my lands, but upon further inspection, I found it was not. I know demons, and this is no demon. It is also nothing that is of a human origin. It is no spirit or specter conjured in any manner I am aware of. To be honest, I do not know what it is. What I am certain of, is that nothing in all my years of battle has ever given me the feeling that this entity has. I know not what it is, but it is dangerous, Inuyasha."

The half demon was taken aback by how forthcoming his brother had been, but there was one small detail Sesshomaru had not mentioned. "I think it steals energy. I saw a glow come from the well, and villagers I've talked to have said they saw the same thing. Like it just sucked the energy away. I never heard of it attacking yokai before, but if it does, maybe it's stealing their yoki too."

Sesshomaru had never observed the thing, he had heard of what it had done, sensed its presence, but until this night he had not actually laid eyes upon the thing. This information that Inuyasha had just given him was new, and it concerned him. "I do not know what this thing is, or what its purpose is, but I feel we need more information, or at the very least a more secure place to construct a plan."

Inuyasha wasn't sure what to think. Suddenly his brother wanted to be included in his quest to find the thing, he wasn't sure he needed anyone for that. Then again, he'd been looking for it, trying to find it so he could destroy it for twenty years to little avail. Would it hurt to find out exactly what Sesshomaru was suggesting?

"And what do you suggest?"

"I suggest that we go to the castle, of course."

To be continued...



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