What a gray snowy day with computer problems will pull out of my brain....
InuYasha hadn’t been gone long, only three days. He hadn’t wanted to go. He didn’t like the idea of leaving Kagome alone with a two-month old child. But when news came of a youkai attack on a village to the north of them, she had insisted and he and Miroku packed their things and made off. As he left the house he turned around once to see Kagome, with Atae on her hip, with a bright smile on her face that he knew was false, but meant to reassure him. Yet, after one final wave goodbye and he turned to walk away, he could smell the scent of her anxiety. That anxiety had haunted him the entire time, and now as he drew close to his home, it grew.
It was very quiet as he walked up to the house. InuYasha walked silently into the house, and immediately felt the wrongness. There was no fire in the hearth. The house was gloomy in the mid-afternoon sunshine with the shutters closed. Kagome was sitting in the far corner of the room, on the mussed-up futon, leaning her head against the wall, her hands covering her face. He could smell her tears. She was alone; their baby was not in the house.
He walked slowly across the room, his heart pounding. “Kagome?” he said softly.
She turned her head, tilted to one side, as if trying to be sure what she was seeing. Her hair was in disarray and her kosode was marked with something she had spilled. That disturbed him almost as much as her tears. She never let herself look like that. There were streaks down her cheeks from her tears, and she looked exhausted.
“InuYasha?” she said. Her voice was low and wispy.
Swallowing hard, pushing down the guilt he felt at leaving her alone, he knelt down beside her. “What’s wrong, Koibito? Did something happen? Where’s Atae?” He worked to keep his voice gentle.
She threw herself in his arms and began sobbing, and for a moment his heart sank.
“Sango took Atae over to her house,” Kagome said between sobs. “I’m so tired, InuYasha. He hardly let me sleep. He had a tummy ache and cried and cried and cried.”
His arms wrapped around her, snugging her close.
“Every time I closed my eyes he needed to be held or walked or changed or fed.” He brushed the hair off of her forehead as she babbled, clinging tightly to him. “I let the fire go out and I can’t think straight and Sango came over and saw me and took Atae home with her for a while, so I could get some sleep, but I just can’t seem to do anything but cry. Just like him.”
“It’s all right, now, Koibito. I’m home,” he said, pulling her into his lap. He wiped the tears off of one cheek.
She looked up at him, into his amber eyes, worried and searching her face. “What kind of mother am I when I can’t even take care of a baby two days?”
“It’s been three days, Kagome,” he said gently, kissing her forehead. “You’re a great mother. It was just too soon for me to leave you alone. Little guy still needs us both.”
She snuggled into his arms as he ran his fingers through her hair. “Three days? I’m so tired I can’t keep track of even that. I don’t sleep so well when you’re not here,” she said.
“You can sleep now,” he said. “I’m not going anywhere except to bring our son home.”
“Good,” she said, closing her eyes.
“Don’t send me away again for a while, all right?” he said, kissing the top of her head.
“I promise,” she replied, and promptly fell asleep.