InuYasha stared into his empty cup, then lifted his eyes to stare at the small fire he was sitting next to. He didn’t know why he was here; it was something Miroku talked him into, visiting an inn on their way back from their latest job. The weather was cold and nasty, and he felt sorry for the monk being out in the weather, so he agreed, putting up with the looks and whispers until washed and fed, the two men were left alone.
“What’s wrong, my friend?” Miroku asked, tipping more sake into his own cup and then offering it to the hanyou.
InuYasha shook his head. “Not sure exactly,” he said. “I just feel uneasy.”
Miroku looked at his friend with a knowing eye. This was the first time he’d left his wife since she’d recovered from the bandit attack. Kagome seemed to be doing well. The monk, though, wasn’t sure if InuYasha had yet recovered himself. He had been woken up the night before by the hanyou having a nightmare.
“You know you don’t have to keep me company,” Miroku said. “If you need to leave early, I can make my own way home.”
InuYasha poked the fire with a stick. “It’s just . . . ” His voice dropped off, but Miroku noticed how the hanyou’s ear twitched, a nervous habit he had when he was trying not to show his uncomfortableness about something.
“Go home, InuYasha. I’ll make it home all right tomorrow or the day after. Go check on Kagome.”
InuYasha looked up at Miroku. The monk took another drink of his sake. “You sure?”
“Absolutely. You’d just drive me crazy tomorrow trying to get me to hurry home anyway.” Miroku emptied his cup.
The hanyou stood up. “I’ll let Sango know.”
“Do that,” he said. “But don’t tell her about the surprise I got her.”
“Keh,” InuYasha said, and slid the door over. “But if you’re not back in two days, I will come looking for you. And I suspect she will, too.”
Miroku laughed as his friend slid the door open and left. Suddenly the room was very quiet, and he idly thought about wandering down to the tea house he had noticed on the way in, and of the girls there who would be more than willing to entertain him, and thought of his wife, and her smile, and the greeting waiting for him once he got home and the children went to sleep. Smiling at the thought, he poured one more cup of sake, stared at the fire, and after a while, went to sleep.