By KogasAngel
[ Reviews - 5]

Author's Chapter Notes:
The song, The Promise, is sung by When In Rome. They did an awesome job and you can hear it on Napoleon Dynamite soundtrack.

If you need a friend, don't look to a stranger,

He watched as once again she cried. Kouga had taken her heart, promised to love, honor, and cherish, but in the end, he ended up betraying her. Just as he had told her. Just as he had predicted.

Kouga had never been the faithful kind, but just this once, he had hoped that she would listen to him and walk away from that doomed relationship before it ended badly. Unfortunately, she did not listen. She never listened.

She had come to him in tears and told him that she had caught Kouga and Ayame together. Again. She told him that Kouga had asked her for a divorce. Kouga had told her that Ayame had gotten pregnant and for the good of the baby, he wanted to marry Ayame.

Of course, Kagome agreed. It was not in her heart to keep someone in a relationship that they did not want to be in. Nor was it her nature to punish an innocent for its parent's indiscretion, so in the end, she did the honorable thing and backed out.

Now, as he sat beside her on his couch, he offered her the one thing he could. He offered her his attention, and knew that she was grateful. For her, this moment was enough.

You know in the end, I'll always be there.

The divorce had taken a lot out of her. She had been given much of their furniture, but Kouga had been given the house. Knowing that Kagome loved that house, Kouga still fought for it and won, claiming that because he had a child on the way, he needed the spacious home to raise his child in. He doubted that Kouga would have cared about the house and that it had to be Ayame who had demanded it. The red head was always pushing about something, and once again, she had gotten her way. The house was taken away from its rightful mistress and placed into the hands of a conniving whore.

He had found her an apartment in the same complex as his. It was in a safe neighborhood, and though he had the money to afford something luxurious, he only needed a two-bedroom apartment. It was big enough for him and his precious daughter, Rin. Having Kagome close by was comforting and Rin did not hesitate to run to Kagome's apartment and walk inside without knocking. It got to the point where if he could not find Rin at her friend's house, then he could find his daughter at Kagome's apartment. It was nice to see Rin bond with a woman who did not mind her energetic spirit.

The year moved on and Kagome had started to spend quite a bit of time with him and his daughter. She had even started to prepare dinner for them as he looked over important documents for work. If he did not know any better, he would say that she had always belonged with them.

But when you're in doubt, and when you're in danger,

As their friendship continued to strengthen, he had watched as Kagome dated other men. Sure, he had quite a few women out there who would love to be his permanent bedmate, but he was simply not interested. He did not care to enter into a relationship, nor did he want some nagging wife who would make his life a living hell with all of her questions about his whereabouts. No, he liked his life the way it was. Simple and clean.

She had chosen to go out with a man who he thought had a questionable reputation. She had merely laughed and said that he was being overprotective. However, the phone call that came at two a.m. in the morning proved to him that he had been right and once again, she had been wrong.

When he arrived at the hospital, he was thankful that Rin had been allowed to stay with his brother and his wife. Inu Yasha and Kikyo had both told him to give Kagome their love and to have her call them as soon as she felt better. When he was led into the small exam area that Kagome was in, he saw her look up at him. All she could do was shake her head, and lift her hands to her face. The bastard had tried to rape her, and now, she had to deal with the aftermath, as would he.

Take a look all around, and I'll be there.

He did not leave her side. He couldn't. So, to keep her close, he moved her into his apartment, and into his room. He graciously took the couch. Now he knew that she would not be harmed. He kept seeing her in his mind being attacked by that bastard and it was all that he could do not to go out and rectify this situation violently. However, he focused all of his attention on the small woman who needed him, that same small woman who was currently dreaming in his bed, wearing his favorite shirt.

A month passed, and Kagome had started to heal her emotional wounds. It had been hard for her, but with the help of counseling, she had managed to piece back together the fragile bits of her being and she moved on. The man who had tried to rape her had been denied bail and was currently looking at several long years in jail for other such crimes.

When the man's sentencing came up, Kagome was able to stand in front of the judge and give a victim impact statement. She had stood tall and her voice had never wavered. She looked the judge straight in the eye and told him what she would like to see happen to her attacker. The judge had agreed with Kagome and the other victims and had explained that the man was just too dangerous to be treated lightly. He would not receive parole until he was in his late seventies.

I'm sorry, but I'm just thinking of the right words to say

He simply was not good with words. He never said that he was. Kagome knew that he was a quiet man and she once said that it did not matter. She said that she talked enough for both of them. He had to agree. She never seemed to shut up.

It wasn't as though he did not want to talk to her. He simply did not know what to say to her, nor did he know how to express himself without making himself seem too arrogant. His father used to say that his tone of voice made the people around him shudder in fright simply because he always sounded so in control. However, that never stopped Kagome from talking to him. In fact, it was from Kagome that Rin picked up her new habit of chattering away whenever the chance presented itself. If he didn't know any better, he would swear that they were mother and daughter.

I know they don't sound the way I planned them to be.

But, on those times that he did speak, he commanded complete attention. He simply could not bear to have someone not looking at him as he spoke to them. Kagome, it seemed, took delight in irritating him by glancing all around the room when he talked, and every now and then, he longed to grasp her chin and force her to be still.

Even now and with how close they were, he simply could not say certain things to her. With other women, he could talk frankly about sex, but with Kagome, he could not. Perhaps it was the way her large eyes would look up at him and mesmerize him with their dark depths, or perhaps it was the way she would tilt her head at him and smile that irresistible smile. Well, whatever it was, it enchanted him and if he was not careful, it would make him into a blubbering idiot.

But if you'll wait around awhile, I'll make you fall for me,

Oh, just to touch her in the way that Kouga had. Just to have her beside him in his bed and be able to take pleasure with her would be paradise for him. He wanted nothing more than to slip into her hot sheath and love her the way a man should love his woman.

However, he knew that despite her claims, she still loved Kouga. Not even his cheating could erase the love in her heart that she held for him. So, he would wait, and he would watch. Once day, he would win her.

I promise you, I promise you I will.

And....this was a promise that he was determined to keep.

When your day is through, and so is your temper,

Nearly two years to the date of her divorce, Kouga appeared on their doorstep. He looked the same, and had a small smile upon his lips. He had asked if he could speak with Kagome, and for the life of him, he nearly said no. However, Kagome had been in the kitchen and she quickly said yes.

For nearly three hours, they talked. At times, shouting could be heard, then sobbing had followed. Finally, he had looked out the window and saw that they were in an embrace. It pained him to see her in his arms, forgiving him for his past sins against her, but he also knew her loving heart and as always, he cursed himself for not making a move on her before she had met Kouga.

You know what to do, I'm gonna always be there.

Though he did not say anything, he was sure that Kagome was aware that he was upset. Not with her, of course. She never offered anything more of herself other than friendship. He was upset with himself. He cursed his inability to deal with this particular woman. He knew that he had lost his chance and he also knew that it would probably be a matter of time before she and Kouga moved back in together.

As he waited for that time to come, Kagome became insistent that he tell her what was wrong. It often would lead to him getting up and walking out, slamming the door behind him. He would come back late at night, and find a note on the door telling him that his dinner was in the microwave and that all he needed to do was press start.

He was a fool. So was Kouga. Neither of them deserved her, but he would not leave her side, even though it was killing him on the inside. No, she would not be alone, and one day, Kouga would again skulk off with some other female and she would come to him and his waiting arms.

Sometimes if I shout, it's not what's intended.

He was better than this. He should not have raised his voice with her, but once again, she was acting foolishly. She had offered to lend support to Kouga as he went through a divorce with that lying redhead, Ayame. However, when told that he had been lied to about the parentage of the baby, he had immediately went to Kagome to beg for forgiveness, and she had forgiven him. It simply was not fair. Here he was, a good man, and she was with that cheating womanizer. Fine, if she wanted to play that game, then he could too. He would show her how it felt to be in his shoes. It was time to call Kagura.

These words just come out, with no gripe to bear.

The next few weeks had been tense. It was clear to him that Kagome hated the fact that he was going out with Kagura, but he simply did not care. She deserved to be in the same place he had been as he watched her run off with Kouga.

They had started to have heated conversations about the matter, and then those escalated to yelling on Kagome's part. Finally, he decided that he had reached the end of his rope and he quietly told her to get out. Out of his apartment and out of his life. He told her that he would no longer stand beside her as Kouga ripped her to shreds. He turned his back on her.

He had heard her gasp. Finally, he heard her say, "Kouga and I are not together. He asked me to return to him, but I said no. I said that I had a place where I am loved and cared for. I suppose that he is not the only liar, is he?"

Before he could collect his thoughts, he heard the door open and heard her murmur that she would come back while he was at work and retrieve her belongings. She said that she would leave the key under the welcome mat. With those words, she left. Crying.

I'm sorry, but I'm just thinking of the right words to say.

He kept watch that night to see if she would return to the apartment. He had told himself that what he had said to her had not been that bad. It seems that Kouga and Kagome were not the only liars.

When she did not return, he had sighed and walked to the couch. Hopefully, she would return and they could talk things out.

He had broken things off with Kagura. It had been wrong to use the woman to deceive Kagome, but now that he knew that it was all in vain, he decided that a clean break would be the best for Kagura, and that is exactly what he did.

I know they don't sound the way I planned them to be.

He had come home from work and walked into his apartment. Looking around, he discovered that things were out of place, and he quickly went to check his closet. He found that all of her clothing had been removed. As promised, she left the key underneath his mat. Clearly, he had been very successful in removing her with his words.

He never meant them. That is what he told her friends, Miroku and Sango. Everything that he had wanted was slipping through his fingers, and he could not stop it. Finally, he decided to write her a note that would explain his behavior. For the first time in his life, he allowed his feelings to fall from him without the care of seeming weak. He told her how he had felt and still felt about her. When he was done, he handed the note to Miroku, and thanked him for delivering it.

But if you'll wait around awhile, I'll make you fall for me,

Two months had passed. Two months of not knowing where she was. Two months of worrying if she was taken care of and being treated properly. During that time, he had heard that Kouga had moved on to yet another woman and that he had finally decided that she was ‘the one'.

The night had been cold and it had grown dark as he pulled into his parking place. He had taken Rin to his father's house for the weekend, and now had two whole days to sit around and sulk. However, as he walked to his door, he saw a figure sitting in front of it, shivering. Clearly, her winter coat was not all that effective.

Stepping up to her, he watched as she looked up at him and gave him a shaky smile. She reached into her coat and pulled out an envelope.

"I got your letter." She said, her large eyes staring up into his golden ones. He did not say a word. Instead, he grasped her arm and pulled her against him. She quickly melted in his embrace and sighed.

"You kept your promise." She whispered happily. His only response was to grunt and pull her tighter against him.

I promise you, I promise you...

Yes, he had promised. He promised to stay at the apartment where she could find him. He promised that his door would always be open to her. He promised that no matter what, she could always come home. He promised that no matter what, he would always love her. Yes, he promised and he kept it.

I'm sorry, but I'm just thinking of the right words to say.

As he stood before her, he stared down at cleared his throat. He had planned what to say, and now, his mind had gone blank. Finally, he managed to come up with a few words and even though they sounded gruff, the adoring look in her eyes made him relax.

I know they don't sound the way I planned them to be.

Every single time he spoke to her, even now, he was tongue-tied. This woman would be the death of him. He had complimented her on how big she was, and he then realized that he had basically just called her fat. However, being used to his ways by now, she had laughed and patted her rounded belly. She had taken his hand and allowed him to feel his next child move around, and he managed to tell her his love for her without making a fool out of himself. Again.

And if I had to walk the world, I'd make you fall for me,

He had done it. He had married the woman who he had loved for so long, and together they had four children, counting Rin. They watched as their sons and daughters grew up and finally left their spacious home.

Every now and then, they would drive by the apartment complex that had held so many memories for them and each time they would go by, Kagome would remark that she wished that they could go back and stay in that apartment forever. She said that she would always remember the home that had helped her fall in love.

I promise you, I promise you I will.

As she lay in her hospital bed, her health failing, she wore a brilliant smile upon her face. Though they were both older, they still had the same passionate love for each other that they had expressed that night she had returned to him so many years ago. As she grew more tired and the need to sleep set in, she cracked open an eye and whispered, "Will you keep your promise and wait for me, Sesshomaru?"

He silently looked down upon his wife. His Kagome. As he watched her eyes close...

I gotta tell you, I gotta tell you, I need to tell you...

He whispered, "I promise."

I'm sorry, but I'm just thinking of the right words to say.

He spoke of how she loved spring. He mentioned that she loved to watch the sun set. He explained that she had loved to read to their children and then to their grandchildren. He knew that he sounded cold. He simply had to be strong. Not for himself, but for his children and grandchildren. They needed him to cry on, and he would not shed his tears until he was alone.

I know they don't sound the way I planned them to be.

He visited her every Sunday. Even now, he stumbled over his words of love for her, and though he knew that she was not there to hear him, he knew that if she were, she would be smiling at his attempts.

Each night as he laid in bed, waiting for sleep to come, he began to wish that this would be the last time he closed his eyes. He missed her. He missed her laugh. And, most of all, he missed the way she would chatter about anything and everything.

But if you'll wait around awhile, I'll make you fall for me,

He did not have that much time. The doctors confirmed their suspicions and had recommended a treatment that would extend his life by nearly six months. Six months, he had told them, was too long. No, he would not accept the treatment, and he bid them a good day.

He knew that one of the things that Kagome had loved about him was his stubborn pride. He simply would not allow himself to live a life attached to machines. No, if he was going to die anyways, he would much rather live his life the way he always had. He wanted to be in control.

His children would beg and plead with him to relent. However, he had a promise to keep. He would not let Kagome down.

I promise you, I promise you...

And...he didn't.

I'm sorry, but I'm just thinking of the right words to say.

As Rin stood in front of the gathering of people, she cried as she spoke about the love that her father and mother had for each other. Theirs was a love to be envied. She spoke about how her father once said that he simply was not the romantic type, but her mother had always waved his comments off and would tell him that the way he treated her was romantic enough.

I know they don't sound the way I planned them to be.

The burial had been just as he wanted. He did not want anyone to make a large fuss over him, nor did he want a lot of people there. He simply wanted to be buried next to his wife. His Kagome. That, in itself, was enough of an honor for him.

He had written out his will carefully. He made sure that his carefully acquired fortune was slit equally amongst his children and grandchildren. He had set up funds for the charities that Kagome had loved. It was clear to his children that their father might not have been a man of words, but he was a man of action. At times, he sounded insensitive, but his actions told them all that they had been loved and for them, that knowledge was by far greater than any amount of money that they had been given.

And if I had to walk the world, I'd make you fall for me,

As he sat beside his window, he waited and watched. Finally, he saw a figure walking towards him. His paradise had been at the little apartment that they had shared and had proven their love for one another. Now, he knew that he would never have to leave again.

As the figure drew closer, he could see that his beloved Kagome was coming home and he quickly went to the door. Before she could knock, he opened the barrier that had been between them and quickly drew his beloved wife into his arms.

"You kept your promise." She murmured happily, tears coursing down her cheeks.

As he swept her tears from her face, he allowed his lips to caress the soft skin of her lips. He had missed this. He had missed her.

When they broke the kiss, Kagome's dark eyes searched his golden ones and she said, "Promise me that we will never be apart. Please, Sesshomaru."

I promise you, I promise you I will. I will. I will.

Leaning down so that his lips were next to her ear, he whispered, "I promise."






The End

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