The Donor by thetroll

Chapter 1

It was Kagome's thirty-second birthday that did her in.

She wasn't getting any younger and, haunted by a series of failed relationships, there seemed to be no other option before her.

So when Kagura suggested the donor site she'd used herself, it felt like fate. After all, Kagura had recently used the site herself and was currently pregnant with twins. Kagome didn't know much about the circumstances behind the donation, but Kagura seemed happy, settling into motherhood easily, to Kagome's envy. 

If Kagura could do the single-mother life, Kagome could, as well. They'd even be able to help one another.

Kagura was glowing with happiness at work ever since she'd made the announcement and that settled the matter for Kagome.

It only took two days for her to cave in.

Kagome made her way to the back of the shop, one eye on her friend even as she pulled up the work computer for inventory to type in the website. Kagome loved Kagura dearly and didn't regret opening the store with her, but Kagura had a tendency to become aggressive with difficult customers. Kagura claimed it was her yokai blood, but Kagome suspected it was Kagura's nature more than the blood.

But there was no denying that Kagura was a chemistry whiz, even if she didn't have the business sense of a white toad. Kagura developed all of the chemical compositions in their natural beauty and household products, while Kagome handled the business aspect of things.

She pulled up the application form, surprised by how in-depth it was. The questions ranged from everything from physical appearance of the donor father and the blood status of the father, to what parental rights she'd be willing to consider. Kagome took her time filling out the questions, grateful it was a Monday morning. The shop was rarely busy on Mondays, a common enough occurrence in the beauty industry.

When she got to the parental rights question, she paused. Kagura, she knew, had abjectly refused to offer any rights to her donor, wanting to raise the child herself—mostly because Kagura couldn't keep anything to herself, despite her best efforts.

But Kagome couldn't find it in herself to refuse a man if he really wanted to see his own child. After all, without him, she wouldn't have a child of her own.

She checked the box accordingly, unaware that doing so would change the course of her life forever.

"Done?" Kagura popped her head in to eye Kagome. "I had a feeling you wouldn't be able to stay away," she added proudly when she saw the site Kagome was on. As Kagome flushed, Kagura added, "It's a good site, Kagome. I did my research and trust me, there's nothing better out there for women like us. You don't even have to meet the donor first if you don't want to." Kagura rubbed her belly, though she was only barely showing. "I didn't want to myself. What point was there? It's not like we'd ever meet again, you know?"

"Yeah," Kagome agreed, but already she was thinking that she couldn't do that, especially if the father wanted to be in her child's life. Shouldn't she have the chance to know what the father was like?

"After all," Kagura continued carelessly, "It's not like you really know what a good man is, right?" She nudged Kagome's arm playfully. "Just remember what Hojo—" Kagura suddenly blanched as she cut herself off. "Oh hell, Kagome, I'm sorry. That was really crass of me."

Kagome accepted the hug Kagura offered. Her friend meant well, but sometimes Kagura's mouth got the better of her before she had the chance to think things through. "It's okay," she said quietly.

"No it's not." Kagura gave her a heated look. "I said something horrible, Kagome. You've really got to stop brushing off stuff so easily like that. It's okay to get mad when someone's being an ass."

Kagome snorted. "Like you got mad at Tanaka-san yesterday?" she said, reminding them both of the altercation that had occurred when one of their regular customers, Tanaka, had stormed in and demanded a makeup blend that physically could not exist based on the chemicals she wanted together.

"I still say you should have let me try to make it for her," Kagura groused irritably. "One look at the sodden mess she'd ordered would have changed her tune."

Kagome raised a brow at her friend's indignant expression. "Or she'd have blamed you and demanded a full refund."

"Hell, I can afford that," Kagura said, lifting her chin. "It's not like it would be any great loss to lose her as a customer, either. The woman is impossible."

"She's also the secretary of the most powerful woman in all of Japan." Kagome rubbed her temples, wishing they weren't rehashing the old argument. "She might be difficult, but she's steered several head pockets our way. Be nice."

Kagura suddenly froze and cursed. "Speaking of nice," she said, laughing awkwardly, "I meant to tell you that Yanami-san demanded to speak with you again."

Kagome let up from the desk. "Yanami-san?" She cursed. "Kagura, you have got to tell me these things sooner!" she hissed before plastering on her widest smile and heading out to where Yanami Totosai was waiting, hands tucked behind his back as he studied one of their candles.

For the time being, her application was forgotten as she worked to smooth over Totosai's ruffled feathers as best as she could.


INUYASHA © Rumiko Takahashi/Shogakukan • Yomiuri TV • Sunrise 2000
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