Chapter 4

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I looked up ahead and saw a small hut with a garden off to the side. The hut was shaded in trees and a small drift of smoke rose up from the opening in the hut. 

"Monk! You have arrived!" a male's voice came from the doorway to the hut. 

"Yes we have my good man. May I presume that you are the one who called for an exorcism?" Miroku asked as we stopped in front of the hut. 

The man nodded. "Yes. But we were surprised when Lady Kaede sent word that she would be sending a monk in her place. We had been expecting Lady Kaede and that other young priestess Lady Kagome." 

Miroku nodded his head. "I understand. However both Lady Kaede and Lady Kagome were unfortunately busy. I can assure you though, my services are just as exceptional as theirs." 

I rolled my eyes and muttered, "Sure it is." 

Miroku jabbed me in side with his elbow and continued to smile at the man. "So what seems to be the issue?" 

"Well my wife and I have both been having strange dreams lately. See we lost our son in the war a few years back and those we both still miss him greatly, we have learned to move on." The man started wringing his hands together. "However lately our nightmares have been full of his grisly death. Though we did not see him die, our minds imagine the worst death possible and present it to us nightly." 

Miroku nodded. "Do you believe that your son is possible trying to talk to you somehow?" he asked. 

The man shook his head. "No we were told by our son's friends that he died an honorable death and he went with no regrets. We feel we are at peace with our son's spirit." 

"Well have no worries. We are going to look around and see if we can sense a demon's presence. May we be excused?" 

The man's face seemed relieved. "By all means go right on ahead and see if you can find the demon responsible for this. My wife is in the hut now preparing a meal for you. I will be inside helping her if you need anything." Miroku bowed to the man and we watched as the man walked back inside to the hut. 

"Do you sense anything Inuyasha?" Miroku asked as we started walking toward the garden.  

"No. And I don't smell any demons nearby either. Do you think it is a spirit?" 

Miroku sighed, "I am not sure. And I fear that we won't be able to find out until tonight. That is when these nice people seem to be so troubled." 

"So that means we are staying the night?" I asked. 

"Yes I believe so. Hmmm..." Miroku walked over to the tree that was at the outskirts of the garden. 

"What is it Miroku?" I asked as I followed after him. 

"I am not sure but it seems that I can almost sense evil presence but...." 

A cold wind blew across the garden and just for a second my nose twitched and I could smell demon. "Miroku there is..." I started to say but images flooded my brain. Shippo being torn apart. Miroku vanishing into a black abyss. Sango being eaten alive by a demon. And Kagome. Screaming in agony as Sesshomaru ripped into her flesh with his claws. I heard a scream and felt myself fall to my knees . 

"Inuyasha?!" Miroku was at my side and he touched my shoulder. In an instant, the images stopped and the cold wind went away. A pain shot through my head and for a minute my vision blurred. "Inuyasha?! What happened?" Miroku asked, his voice full of concern. 

"I don't know..."I mumbled. "I smelled demon and then...." 

"What?" Miroku asked. 

"It's nothing," I said, standing up. "Let's just catch this demon." 

"So it is a demon we are facing," Miroku asked. 

"Yes I could smell it but just for an instant. I think this demon can mask its scent somehow," I growled. 

"Do you smell it now?" I searched the air for a scent but could only find the smell of trees and vegetables. 

"No. It has apparently gone back into hiding. Damn!" 

Miroku looked over at me. "Inuyasha what exactly happened? You went stiff for a few seconds, then screamed. Were you possessed?" 

I scowled. "No. Just...." I looked over at the hut. "What the old man said about seeing your fears relived. This demon shows you your nightmares." 

Miroku was quiet for a moment. "Well let us eat and then I will hurry back to let Sango know we are staying the night. It is such a short distance that I should be back in time to help you with the demon."  

"When you go, will you check on Kagome for me?" I asked him as we walked up to the hut. "Just let her know I will be home early in the morning?" 

Miroku nodded. "Absolutely."

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