“Would you care to enlighten me, Sesshoumaru, as to what exactly this was about?” She dropped the smoldering evidence in front of him. Tendrils of smoke curled up from it.
“…No. I would not care to.”
The glare she leveled at him could have melted glaciers. “It was a rhetorical question.”
“It was an honest answer.”
“Oooh! Sesshoumaru!” Kagome stomped her foot, fuming. “I think I deserve a little explanation for this!” Her pitch hiked up a few notches as she swung an accusing finger at the mangled heap. “Just what am I supposed to tell my professor? ‘The dog ate my homework?’”
Sesshoumaru blinked. Then blinked again, brow creasing at the unfamiliar expression. “I did not eat it,” he defended, uncertainly.
“No, you didn’t. You—you—you melted it!” She threw her hands in the air. “And you didn’t stop there! You melted my calculator! You melted my pen! You melted my textbook! You melted a hole in my desk!“ Kagome waved the scorched shreds of paper in front of his nose. “And then—then!—you tried to bury the evidence in the backyard!”
“Evidently, I did not do an effective job of it,” the demon muttered.
“That’s not the point!” This was giving her a headache. She’d passed out at her desk, and when she woke, she’d found her unfinished homework was not only missing, it had been…annihilated. Ignited in a pyre of corrosive acid. Utterly obliterated. And now he wouldn’t talk?
For some reason he was refusing to look at her, his mouth set in a grim line, and Kagome sighed. “Sesshoumaru,” she said, voice softening, “Please. I have been up all night every night for weeks. I haven’t slept in days. What on earth possessed you to do this?”
He gave an aloof shrug. “You hate math. I hate things you hate. I kill things I hate.”
“You have said many times that you wished to destroy your texts.”
“Sesshoumaru.” He was still being evasive. “Please?”
For a long minute the demon looked at her. Then he slowly stood, unfolding to his full impressive height. “You wish to know why I did it?” he asked.
“Yes, I would.” She folded her arms.
Something steely glinted in his eyes. Then he blurred before her, and Kagome squeaked as she was lifted into the air. “Because,” he declared, flipping her over his shoulder, “you are exhausted, and miserable, and unhappy, and this Sesshoumaru will not stand for it any longer.” He began marching upstairs.
“Sesshoumaru! You can’t just—argh!“ Kagome wriggled and kicked, but his grip was like iron. “Where are you taking me?”
“You are going to bed.”
“But I have to finish my—“
“You are going to bed.”
“But it’ll be late!” she protested.
The world spun as he set her on her feet and shook her by the shoulders. “Then it will be late.” The look in his eyes finally silenced her. Amidst the frustration and exasperation was a hint of resignation and…concern? Was he…was he worried about her?
All her anger bled away.
What must it be like, she wondered suddenly, for someone who can literally smell stress? Seeing her torture herself like this every day, for reasons he didn’t understand?
Sure, battling in the feudal era was rather stressful too, but that was a stress that made sense to him. Stressing over silly petty things like homework must seem, in his eyes, like sheer self-abuse.
Kagome crumbled. He was taking care of her the only way he knew how. Even knowing she’d yell at him for it. And play-fighting aside, deep down she knew he was just like every other dog: he was like a kicked puppy when he got scolded.
But he'd acted anyway, because he was worried, and now he looked just as exhausted and miserable and unhappy as she felt.
There was only one way to fix this.
“Can I at least use you as a pillow?” she asked, timidly.
He gave her his most heart-stopping smile and Kagome swore she might just never do homework again.
“Promise me one thing, though,” she said as he scooped her back up.
"Don't ever do that again." She snuggled into his hair and yawned. "But, if you do, you have to let me watch it burn."