The Moment We've All Been Waiting For

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"Sesshoumaru-sama...?" Jaken said. He was relieved it had worked, but now he was curious about what Sesshoumaru was thinking about.

'To think, that just for an instant, it made I, Sesshoumaru, afraid...' Sesshoumaru thought. He had smelled Katsumi's fear when it happened, so he knew she had felt it as well, despite being in her human form. '... That time when Inuyasha...' "What happened after Totosai put up that wall of flames?" Sesshomaru asked Katsumi, looking at her again. "What exactly did you see?"

"What? Well... I'm not entirely sure..." she replied, thinking carefully. It had all happened so fast... "I suddenly had this really foreboding feeling that made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up, and then Inuyasha's face changed."

"His face changed?"

"Yeah. Jagged purple stripes appeared on each side of his face, and his fangs seemed longer. And, I know you don't like it when people compare you to each other, but... his eyes looked like yours when we first met in the forest near Rin's village. The whites of Inuyasha's eyes turned red and his irises were blue. His energy felt similar to yours too, only... there was something scarier about it..."

"What? Fool! How could a hanyou be more fearsome than the great Sesshoumaru-sama?!" Jaken said incredulously, offended on his lord's behalf.

"I didn't mean it like that," Katsumi said cautiously, sweat-dropping. "It's just difficult to describe... How can I put it? With Sesshomaru-sama there's always a very calm and calculating air about him, but Inuyasha... at that moment, it was like he had become something wild and unpredictable. No matter how much the two of us fought in the past, I never felt like my life was in danger, but today... I got the feeling he would have killed me if given the chance. He was like a completely different person."

"And then?" Sesshoumaru asked. "After the miko spoke it seemed to end as suddenly as it began."

"Ah, that was the subjugation beads around his neck. Kagome said the command to knock him out. I think that's probably why. As soon as he was unconscious everything went back to normal. He was the usual Inuyasha again."

"The transformation stopped because he was unconscious, huh..." Sesshoumaru mused. That still left the question of what had caused it to happen in the first place. Why would it manifest now after showing no sign of it in their previous fights? What would have happened if Inuyasha had been allowed to continue?

A gentle breeze blew, and a pair of birds sang as they flew peacefully through the air. Below them, Rin was sitting on the soft grass of the meadow where they had left her, playing. She was picking flowers to make a bouquet for Katsumi.

"Sigh. Sesshoumaru-sama and Katsumi-nee sure are late..." Rin said. She heard the sound of Ah-Un's feet stomping on the ground. "Ah!" she said excitedly, realizing they must be back. She turned and saw them all approaching her. "Sesshoumaru-sama! Katsumi-nee!" Rin shouted happily as she ran to them.

"We're back, Rin!" Katsumi said, smiling as she walked faster to meet her half way. Sesshoumaru stopped, and Jaken almost bumped into him.

"Rin, Katsumi, Don't move," Sesshoumaru ordered. Sensing how serious he was, Rin and Katsumi immediately went rigid with their bodies frozen mid-step. Sesshoumaru leaped over them, and swung Tokijin, slicing through the trees on the edge of the forest line.

"A woman, huh..." Sesshoumaru said when the trees fell away to reveal a female youkai holding a fan. "I remember the smell. It's the same as that charlatan... Naraku or something... that tried to entrap me before."

'Eh? Entrap... Wasn't Naraku helping him...?' Katsumi wondered.

"Hmmm, so you're Inuyasha's elder brother, Sesshoumaru, huh? You've got a fine face," the female youkai said. Katsumi felt her eye twitch.

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