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Rainy Day Activities Pt 2: Duck Songs and Sleepovers

Chapter 12

Chapter 12: Rainy Day Activities Pt 2: Duck Songs and Sleepovers


     Inuyasha, Kagome, and Shiro sprawled on the sofa, exhausted from all the running, tickling, and laughing they had been doing. Who knew having fun could take so much out of a person? Kagome couldn’t remember the last time she had laughed so hard or had so much fun. Inuyasha sat with his feet on the coffee table, head thrown back and arms looped across the back of the sofa. Shiro sat on her lap, playing with her hair and wearing a look of fierce concentration as he twisted strands together. Kagome was too content to care how much work de-tangling her hair was going to be.


     "I should probably get going." Kagome was reluctant, but she couldn't impose on Inuyasha and his son forever.


     "Can't," Inuyasha said without opening his eyes. Kagome had thought he was almost asleep. "It's still raining. Don't you hear it?"


     Rain pounded on the roof, not as hard as before, but it didn't sound like it would be stopping anytime soon. Inuyasha opened one eye to look at her. He yawned.


     "I don't feel like drowning today." Putting his feet on the floor, he stretched his arms over his head. He rotated his head and winced as if his neck was stiff. Kagome had the urge to massage his tension away. "The rain can't last forever. You can go home later."


     Kagome looked down at Shiro, who was trying to thread a ribbon he had found through her hair. "What do you want to do, munchkin?"


     Shiro tapped one finger against his chin and scrunched his face in thought.  He looked so totally adorable that Kagome wanted to hug him and never let go. Smiling in contentment, she breathed in his delightful little-boy scent.


     "I know!" He climbed out of Kagome's lap. "We can have a sing-a-long! Daddy and I do it all the time." Clapping his hands together, he looked pleased with his idea.


     Kagome looked over to see Inuyasha frantically shaking his head. "I can't sing. Kagome doesn't want to hear me sing. Let's do something else."


     Shiro jumped up and down with excitement. "Let's sing, Daddy! It's my idea, so I get to pick the songs." He went quiet for a moment, then, a big grin split his face. "Duck songs, Daddy! I want songs about ducks!"


     "Ducks?" Kagome turned to Inuyasha, a puzzled expression on her face. He groaned, but she had already figured out that he wouldn't deny Shiro anything. What was wrong with ducks?


     Inuyasha buried his face in his hands. When he spoke, his voice was muffled. "The rule in this house is that whoever picks the game gets to choose the rules or the theme. Since singing is Shiro's idea, he gets to decide what we sing about. And he has this thing about ducks. I never should have bought him that rubber ducky."


     "I don't know any songs about ducks," Kagome protested. Shiro grabbed her hand and pulled. She stood and, to keep him from hurting himself when he tried to move a chair that was bigger than him, bullied Inuyasha into helping push the furniture to the edges of the room.


     "You can make up words," Shiro told her. "It's more fun that way." He ran up the stairs and returned with a toy microphone. Inuyasha joined Kagome in the center of the room and accepted the microphone Shiro shoved at him.


     Shiro grabbed Kagome's hand and dragged her back to the sofa. "Daddy's first! He gets to pick the next singer. Sit here, 'Gome." Kagome flopped onto the cushions, followed by Shiro who climbed onto the sofa and snuggled against her. She put her arm around him and turned her attention to Inuyasha, standing uncomfortably before them.


     Inuyasha cleared his throat, turned the plastic microphone over a few times, and cleared his throat again. Kagome bit her lip to keep from laughing. This was too hilarious. What duck song would the great Inuyasha sing?


     "There was a little duck and he had a webby foot

     And he lived in the meadow by the willowy brook"


     Kagome couldn't believe her ears. His voice was not what she had expected. She hadn’t thought he would know how to carry a tune even if it came in a convenient little carrying case. Privately, she admitted to herself that she would have no problems listening to him sing all day long, even if it was just kids’ songs. He caught her eye and grinned at the expression on her face.


     "And he ruffled up his feathers

     And he said I'm mighty warm

     Another little swim won't do me any harm

     Ducky ducky duck duck"


     "Quack quack," shouted Shiro. Inuyasha finished with a flourish and bowed. Shiro laughed and applauded. Kagome joined in a beat later, still stunned by Inuyasha’s newly revealed abilities. Inuyasha grinned at her with a look on his face that promised retribution. Stepping forward, he folded her hands in his, ignoring the adorable blush that spread across her cheeks at the contact. When he released her, she was holding the microphone. She shook her head, panicked.


     "Your turn, Kagome," he said. She wanted to smack that smug look off his face, or sink into the cushions. She couldn't decide which.


     "Sing, 'Gome! Sing, 'Gome!" Shiro chanted. Kagome allowed the two of them to push her into the middle of the room. She swallowed around the lump in her throat as her mind went blank; she didn't know any duck songs. Wait; there was something her mom used to sing when she was a little girl. Her mom liked ducks, too. She cleared her throat in unconscious imitation of Inuyasha.


     "Five little ducklings I once knew

     Fat ones, skinny ones, short ones too"


     Kagome's voice was true, those two years of singing lessons when she was little paying off. She closed her eyes to better remember the words and missed the surprised look in Inuyasha's eyes. A look that turned to pleasure.


     "But the one little duck with a feather on his back

     He led the others with a quack, quack, quack

     Quack, quack, quack.  Quack, quack, quack

     He led the others with a quack, quack, quack."


     Shiro stood up on the couch and clapped. Inuyasha couldn't applaud; he was laughing too hard. He never thought he would hear Kagome singing about ducks. She did have a rather fine voice. Maybe she would sing something else for him someday? He shook his head to clear it of that disturbingly pleasant image.


     Kagome marched up and cuffed him lightly. "Be nice," she scolded. "I didn't laugh at you." Inuyasha caught her hand before she could hit him again.


     "I'm sorry." His lips twitched with suppressed mirth. "It was a very nice song. You have a sweet voice." Kagome pulled away and turned to Shiro to hide the reddening tinge on her cheeks. He liked her singing? Flustered, she handed the microphone to Shiro.


     "Your turn, munchkin." She managed to hide the slight quaver in her voice and fiddled with the edges of her shirt, trying to calm the butterflies doing back flips in her stomach. Any compliment from Inuyasha gave her funny feelings and made her heart pound. It was worse than the flu. She didn't think this was something she would get over like a virus.


     Shiro bounced to the middle of the room. He never walked, but always bounced or ran. One of these days, Kagome was going to check the bottoms of his feet for tiny springs. He struck a pose that looked suspiciously like something gleaned from a show he had no business watching. Kagome made a mental note to question Inuyasha about his son’s television habits.


     "See the little ducklings

     Swimming here and there

     Swimming here and there

     Heads down in the water

     Tails up in the air"


     Inuyasha and Kagome clapped as Shiro bowed. Inuyasha blew a piercing whistle and shouted, "Encore! Encore!" Shiro responded to the encouragement and sang a counting song about a mama duck calling for her babies. Inuyasha and Kagome joined in after the first verse.


     Inuyasha stood and took the microphone from Shiro before he could think up any more duck songs. "Who's up for a movie?" He opened a cupboard next to the television that was filled with videos. "We have 'The Lion King' and 'Toy Story 2’ and--"


     "'The Lion King!'" Shiro ran to the linen closet and returned with a red blanket so large that he could barely see over the top of it. Kagome rushed to help him before he crashed into anything.  Together, they spread it on the sofa while Inuyasha set up the movie.


     It was cozy on the sofa, with the only thing between Kagome and Inuyasha being a hyper little boy. Shiro shouted encouragement to Simba and sang along with the songs. About twenty minutes into the movie, Kagome noticed that it had grown quiet. She looked down to see that Shiro had fallen asleep with his head pillowed in his daddy's lap. Kagome hit the pause button while Inuyasha took his son to bed. Shiro stirred slightly and muttered something about ducks. Inuyasha returned after a few minutes.


     "Sit down, Inuyasha." Kagome patted the sofa. "I want to at least see the end of the movie. I've never seen this one before."


     Inuyasha sat gingerly on one end of the sofa. Without Shiro present, Kagome made him nervous. He hadn't felt this way around a member of the opposite sex in a long time. When Kagome snuggled up next to him and pulled the blanket over his lap, he jumped.


     "It's cold in here," she mumbled sleepily. "And the blanket's big enough to share." She yawned and laid her head on his shoulder. Kagome was too tired to blush and it felt so right to lean against him, especially when he moved his arm so that it was draped loosely around her shoulders.


     Inuyasha had forgotten the plot of the movie by now; something about the lion who would be king. All he could concentrate on was the feel of Kagome pressed up against him. Kikyo had never snuggled, but then she also wouldn't be caught dead watching anything that was animated. He found it harder each day to imagine life without Kagome. She made him laugh, and Shiro adored her. She mumbled something. Inuyasha turned to ask her to repeat herself.


     Kagome was asleep. Her face looked so peaceful that Inuyasha hated to wake her, but his leg was cramping up. Putting a hand on her shoulder, he shook her lightly.


     She scrunched up her nose and gripped his shirt with both hands. "But Mama, I don’t wanna punch the cow. I wanna sleep." She was one heavy sleeper. Rain continued to drip heavily on the roof and that gave him all the excuse he needed. Gently prying her fingers loose, he stood. She protested the loss of her pillow, but didn't wake. One hand he slipped under her knees and the other one he used to support her back as he picked her up, blanket and all.


     It was tricky carrying her up the stairs and into the only room left that had an empty bed; his own. When she abruptly shifted position, he nearly dropped her. Fumbling with girl and blanket, he managed to turn the light on and get her to the bed without major mishap. Once he had her down, she curled up on her side.  He tried to pry the blanket out of her hands, but she had a death grip on it. With a gentleness he had never demonstrated while she was awake, he pulled the covers up to her chin and brushed an errant lock of hair off her face, tucking it behind her ear. No one was around and Kagome was fast asleep. This gave him the courage that he otherwise lacked. Leaning forward, he pressed his lips to her forehead.


     "Goodnight, Kagome," Inuyasha whispered. With one last glance at the peacefully slumbering girl, he turned off the light and went downstairs to make as comfortable a bed as he could on the sofa.




Food for thought:


I try to take one day at a time,


But lately several days have attacked me at once

copyright: The Literary Dragon 2004