Sesshomaru turned and around moved ahead without glancing even once at her. He knew she would follow him without him explaining about their destination or about anything for that matter. However his pace was unusually slow, letting Rin cope up with him.
They were walking silently, without a word of exchange between them. It was not long before Sesshomaru stopped in his tracks.
Rin had her fullest attention focused on the walking form of Sesshomaru that she became aware of the environment around her only when he stopped abruptly. Then she surveyed her surroundings and found that they were alone in a grassy plain completely deserted by humans and demons. A beautiful place! breathtaking! Breeze grazing the grass as well as the couple’s curtain of long tresses and clothes.
Sesshomaru turned around and faced her. His face betrayed no emotion. However his steady stare and stiffened lips gave a hint to Rin that he was tensed up about something. But what…? Rin contemplated.
“What do you wish for?” Sesshomaru said which startled the girl.
Sesshomaru’s voice was so low that if Rin’s concentration had been a little weaker, she would have missed what he had said.
Rin blinked and her lips let out the words before she knew it, “I don’t understand”
Sesshomaru shifted his eyes to the vacuum above her head; he took a deep breath before uttering, “As far as WE are concerned….. what do you wish for?”
What…?!? Rin could not believe her ears. Did he….actually utter ‘WE’?!? Since when did he become concerned about ‘them’ (i.e. Sesshomaru AND Rin) put together!? She would never miss this opportunity for the world. She decided to speak her mind out to him, without letting any of her inhibitions stop her from it.
“I wish to marry you, Lord Sesshomaru”
Sesshomaru gaze fell on hers. His eyes widened by 3 millimetres upon seeing the confidence and resolution in her eyes.
Three seconds passed.
Rin brought her hands in her front and knitted her fingers together before beginning, “I wish for a place beside you…. to live my life with you; to chat with you; to sing about you; to fight with you; to cry on your chest..…” like the day when you saved me from the crow demon…. Rin reminisced over the sweet memory. The short and subtle spark in Sesshomaru’s eyes asserted that even he was reminiscing over the same memory.
Rin involuntarily let her hands fall to her side, as she started to become a little too emotional; her palms were open, stiff and straightened; her eyebrows knitted together, displaying her desperation as she raised her voice and uttered, “I wish-NO! I want to be crazy about you forever, as how I am now!......”
The shocked but all the more delighted expression which his eyes emitted briefly could not be suppressed even by the skillful demon lord.
Rin’s cheeks were red the whole time. She paused only to continue with a bright red tomato face. “I want to make love to you! I want to mother three children of yours…. Or even more! I want them to take after you in looks and personality”.
Since when did this conversation migrate from the subject ‘Rin’s wishes’ to the ‘Rin’s wants’? Sesshomaru was taken aback at her love so much that he stood frozen, unable to blink an eye.
Rin was not done yet. She went on, as she lifted her right hand and her forefinger boldly pointing at his amber eyes at a few inches distance from his handsome face, as she declared, “I want to keep gazing at your eyes and get lost in their depths. Then one day…..I must die in peace…..”
Not before I do! Sesshomaru’s inner voice countered without a moment of thought. Such love! The dog demon was at loss of words. He regretted for having wasted so many months, neglecting his love for her. NO! He regretted for having wasted eighteen years of his life without her, when he ideally should have snatched her from her parents and taken her to his palace, under his possession and protection, from the moment she was born.
Sesshomaru knew too well, it was about time he broke the silence with his even baritone voice that drives Rin wild every time he speaks. “I am unlike complaisant, whimsical males out there. I am a demon. Emotions are never my specialty. Speech? *HUFF* Silence is the only language I am most articulate in……” Sesshomaru paused in order to prepare his mind to venture out the harder part of his verbal counter, so that his face, voice and demeanor would not betray him, “I have hurt you before…. And unbeknownst to myself, I may end up hurting you again in future. A human woman may not find what she so often terms as ‘happiness’ in me….. Why me?” Sesshomaru managed to communicate the whole thing, having a tight leash on his smooth tone from shaking and cold voice from breaking.
To his surprise, Rin chuckled at that. He was gazing at his beloved woman wary of the justification that was due from her for the chuckle she just so indiscreetly contrived. Then she swiftly gathered her broken composure and answered with confidence dripping from her eyes and words, “It’s a ‘Rin’ thing, Lord Sesshomaru! You’d never understand. You must become Rin to feel like Rin!”
Look at the irony! Now it is Sesshomaru who has made a long speech, while Rin has given a short, but all the more meaningful reply.
Sesshomaru’s eyes widened than the last time; stiff mouth loosened and fell open by 1 centimetre. “It’s a ‘Rin’ thing, Lord Sesshomaru! You’d never understand. You must become Rin to feel like Rin!” Sesshomaru was stunned at her proclamation. With these very few set of words, Rin has clearly expressed how she loves him from her skin to soul and why he may never be able to completely comprehend her profound love for him.
Rin shot her trademark bright smile in return.
Sesshomaru put back his stoic mask, the existence of which had been long-forgotten during the past few moments.
His mouth was shut firmly; eyes gazing at her gently; stone-hard face softened; shoulders relaxed. His head gave a very small but noticeable (only to Rin’s trained eyes) nod as he began, “Very well, then. Let us mate, or….‘wed’ as in human terms”
Rin’s eyes bulged out as she took in a sharp breath. Few seconds passed before her pink lips maneuvered an open-mouthed smile.
“I love you, Rin….. I have, from the day I saw you…..I never knew in the beginning. Nor did I admit it when I had realized with the passage of time….. Now I can no longer deny it”
Sesshomaru’s ears were keen to hear her out but his eyes found that there were only tiny diamonds rolling from Rin’s sparkling eyes, those were answering his proposal.
Before he could stop himself, his mouth betrayed, “Be mine”, which means “Will you please be mine…?”
Rin closed the distance between them by 1.5 feet, with her sunlit smile. She nodded her agreement as her throat closed in from letting out the words which were flowing from her heart.
Sesshomaru wanted to take her in his arms to ease her nerves and comfort her. His hands lifted up automatically before they were forced to hang by his sides manually. Because he still didn’t dare to touch her without her absolute assent after their ‘midnight’ episode.
Rin somehow understood his hesitation. She held his hands and lifted them so that his palms cupped her cheeks. She nodded, suggesting that she has assented and that he can touch her.
Sesshomaru, no matter how anxious he was on the inside, kept his bold façade in place. He slowly leaned forward and dipped his head. He paused for a moment, trying to read her eyes and body language. To the best of his senses, he had not felt any sign of protest from her. In order to encourage him, Rin tilted her head upwards and fluttered her eyes close; her lips stretched in a small smile, with anticipation. Sesshomaru could not help the 1 millimetre twitch of his own lips emanating a tiny smirk.
From that moment, he let his instincts take over. He planted a tender kiss on her lips. However, he did not dare to deepen the kiss. He brushed his lips across hers, too gentle to be called a ‘kiss’ as if daubing medicine on a wound. Yes. He felt as if he was daubing medicine on the wound he had inflicted on her lips the last time he kissed her. But that was more than enough to drive Rin out of sanity. The kiss his soft lips blessed her with was warm; comforting, consoling; apologetic; reassuring; loving…..
Rin felt that all those feelings Sesshomaru had bottled up inside of him was flowing inside her through his lips. She was thrilled at the unexpected turn in her life; a good turn in her life. She held his cheeks with both hands to sneak her way into his mouth. But Sesshomaru hastily withdrew from her hands and lips.
Rin who was dazed out at the emotions she had been experiencing blinked in confusion.
“…….” Rin could not understand his intentions at all.
Sesshomaru quickly released her and filled the two-feet distance between them again.
“I will not lay a claw on you….”
“…..” Rin was alarmed.
“Not until we mate”
“…..huh?!” Her jaws dropped and shoulders drooped in disappointment.
Sesshomaru turned around to avoid seeing her desperate face.
“and that is my own punishment for invading your private space beyond permissible boundary without prior approval and sufficient notice, the other night” Sesshomaru announced his verdict.
With Sesshomaru’s choice of words, Rin felt as if she was in some sort of political campaign at the moment.
“um….but er….are you not punishing me as well, in the process…?” Rin asked innocently.
“…….” Sesshomaru could not help turning his head sideward to glance at his Rin from the corner of his eyes. She was pointing her forefinger towards herself, with a ‘poor li’ll kitten’ face. Awww!!! She looked sooo cuuute!!!
If Sesshomaru was of that type, he would have chuckled…. Or at least, smiled….
He held his nose high and declared, “Yes. For letting your guard down so easily with me that night”. Sesshomaru turned his back to her again to hide his microscopic smirk from Rin’s eyes.
“*GASP* Lord Sesshomaru! How mean!” a reddened Rin rebuked.
Life could not have gotten any smoother and greater to Rin than this. Her mother is no longer ailing; she is gradually recovering her ability to walk normally as Rin walks a good distance along with her, thrice a day, as an exercise; her father’s health is full of vim and vigor; her friendship with Kohaku was best as ever…… Her beloved Lord Sesshomaru has FINALLY made his marriage proposal to her; he is betrothed to her! What more can she ask for…?
Well, he HAS distanced himself from her physically, for the sake of the ‘punishment’ he has bestowed upon himself and Rin on his own. But Rin was not complaining, as she consoled herself by reminding herself of how he had earlier, distanced himself from her in mind.
Kenji and Misao were delighted and grateful to know that Sesshomaru had finally proposed to their daughter. They were really proud to have Sesshomaru as their son-in-law. But they felt sorry for Kohaku and his parents. However, they were so understanding that there was no room for bitterness between the friends’ parents. In fact, Kohaku’s parents were only happy that Rin’s parents have recovered their good health and that Rin has finally found her happiness in her family and her love.
“Lady Rin! Lord Sesshomaru seeks you in the garden. He-” rushed in a servant, who was instantly interrupted by the maiden in love.
“Right, Shiro! I’m on my way!” Rin said as she ran towards the garden at jet speed.
The servant blinked. Lady Rin is super fast!
Rin halted in her tracks when she found Sesshomaru standing in the garden, with his back to her.
Oh my God! He looks exquisite from behind! Rin was blushing. Her eyes widened like a pair of eggs and her cheeks sought her burning cheeks to sizzle down the temperature.
Sesshomaru turned sharply and fixed his gaze upon his lovely maiden’s form.
Having gotten shamefully caught of blushing, Rin’s hands quickly released her cheeks, dropped and clasped together in a knot. Rin’s face centered towards the ground as she proceeded towards Sesshomaru. With her bangs, she could only hide her eyes from him. Oh how she wished she had a mask to cover her blushing face from his teasing stare! A fan at least!
By avoiding meeting his face, Rin missed the chance of seeing Sesshomaru’s smiling eyes which was warmed and softened as it examined her.
Sesshomaru turned to his side and his gaze were focused on the sky. It was only then, when Rin was able to steal a glance at his face. He looked grim…. His body seemed have tensed up and his muscles, stiffened…. Something is….is serious…. I wonder what it is….Rin began to worry. Is it something critical about the mission….? Or is there going to be a war with the neighbouring lords….? Or….is it about our wedding….? Oh! What could it be….?