Diamond in the Rough by Sereia

Chapter 1

For the lovely Troll on her birthday!

Sequel to Chapter 4 and Chapter 19 from Kiss & Tell.


It had been a while since he'd designed something new, something for her. Not that she knew, of course. Kagome assumed his ideas came to him during spouts of inspiration or his trips to the various conventions held around the country, and Sesshoumaru wasn't about to correct her.

But it wasn't just the ring he'd shown her the first time she'd entered his shop that had been meant for her body alone.

He had an entire collection now, the items discretely dispersed amongst each section of glittering finery, sparkling from each corner of the store.

And yet his Kagome had found each one.

She never bought anything, but her scent lingered over each piece, proving she'd tried them on more than once. Sesshoumaru smirked as he leaned against the counter, watching her flitter about the room, pretending to inspect all the displays even though her gaze was glued to the same ones she'd seen before.

She was wasting time before he closed the shop, engaging in conversation with the various employees until he could steal her away for himself.

He'd nearly been beside himself when she'd first stepped through the doors of his shop, her stride purposeful as she'd approached the counter and ended up with a gauche solitaire on her finger. It was still his design, so he couldn't be too averse to the way the diamond caught the light, but it wasn't meant for her, and for a horrifying moment, Sesshoumaru had thought he'd missed his chance.

Always the selfish creature, he'd lured her away from the collections open to the public and offered up the one ring he would give to no one save her. She was just as he remembered her, raven hair curling around her shoulders, blue eyes sparkling like sapphires in the moonlight.

And the look on her face when he placed the ring on her finger was something he'd never forget.

So when she'd blurted out that she was only picking the rings for a friend, along with her innocent words of true love, he'd almost collapsed with relief. She'd looked back more than once before she'd left the store, fingers clutching the pendant around her neck, and hope had bloomed in his chest.

Hope that had floundered when his meddlesome mother had tried to set him up on a blind date at the very wedding Kagome had picked up the rings for. His mother had dragged him to the event, claiming that it was his duty as the ring provider, but he'd known what her true intent had been from the beginning.

Sesshoumaru had planned on making a hasty getaway once his mother had been distracted, but she'd somehow conned the wedding planner into finding him a dance partner, and only the sight of those sapphire eyes had stopped him from refusing outright.

The sight of his early work around her neck and the soft blush on her cheeks drew him in, spilling his knowledge of her extra trips to his store just to deepen the colour on her face. He'd taken advantage of her flustered demeanour to try and charm a confession out of her, wanting to create an opportunity for a rendezvous outside of work.

And then she'd allowed him to kiss her.

If she hadn't been the maid of honour, she would not have made it to the reception.

As it was, he'd had to remind himself that she had obligations during the event, forcing himself to release her when she was needed at the head table.

"All ready to go?" she asked, her eager smile coming into focus as he was pulled from his musings.

He leaned over the counter, smirking when the increased proximity brought that same blush to her cheeks. "Did you find anything you liked?"

Kagome licked her lips, his eyes purposefully following the movement. "I always find something I like. You make such pretty things!" He didn't comment on the way her eyes flickered toward a cluster of sapphires woven between platinum thread hanging from the bracelet display—the newest piece in the collection.

"And yet you refuse to let me buy you any of them."

Her lips turned up into a sheepish smile. "Because you ask me that every time I'm here."

"It is not my fault that I wish to cover such a lovely specimen in my own creations," he said, flipping his braid over his shoulder.

"You'll never make any money that way," she replied, pursing her lips. "I still don't know how you roped me into this elaborate show you're sponsoring this weekend."

His smirk turned into a wolfish grin. "You gave me your word, so you cannot back out now. And besides, to be the best, the gems must be promoted by the best."

"I still don't see how I'm—"

The back of his claws stroked the side of her neck, twirling a lock of hair around his fingers. "You are beautiful, Kagome. I would have none other display my creations than you." Her scent was a mix of embarrassment and denial, but a spark of desire burned in the middle, and he pulled her close, brushing their lips together.

"How is it you were single when I met you?"

Amber eyes gleamed. "How indeed."


"I hate to admit it, but that was actually fun."

Sesshoumaru unlocked the back door to the shop, holding it open so Kagome could step inside, their fingers still laced together to keep her steady in the jewelled stilettoes he insisted she wear.

The show had been a complete success, drumming up a slew of custom orders that would last him several months. Sesshoumaru much preferred to spend his time in the back of the shop designing the jewellery rather than helping to sell it, but he also knew that no one was as skilled as he when it came to matching a customer to their dream design.

Perhaps he would hire another employee specifically for the role. The idea had merit, especially considering Kagome tended to work opposite hours to him. It would be the tipping point in convincing her to move in with him.

As soon as her feet touched the floor, she shrugged off her coat and slipped out of her shoes, sighing in relief as she clenched and unclenched her toes. "I have no idea how people can stand to walk around in these all day."

"They are meant to accentuate your calves. Though you do not need any help in that area."

She attempted to curtsy, but the cut of her dress made it difficult, and she stumbled slightly, giggling as she gripped his arm. "Thanks for inviting me. I had a lot of fun."

Sesshoumaru closed the distance between them, moulding his mouth to hers as his fingers slid down her back, tracing the deep line of her dress. "Does this mean you will accompany me to the next one?"

She gave him a dazed look, still looking at his mouth, blinking owlishly. "I guess. If you can't find anyone better."

"There will never be anyone better than you." His tone was low and honest, but she brushed it off.

"Oh, come on! You've probably got a line of models begging to—" She gasped as he tugged her into the main shop and in front of the mirror display, several reflections staring at her from all sides.

"You are stunning, Kagome. When will you believe me when I tell you no one compares to you?"

She lowered her gaze. "I'm only this pretty tonight because of your makeup artists and all the clothes you gave me." He stood behind her on the platform, the buttons of his silk shirt pressing into her back as he forced her to raise her chin.

He hadn't bothered turning on the lights, the jewels adorning her body illuminated by the moonlight filtering through the windows. "I would not allow just anyone to wear my creations. That role alone is reserved for the goddess that owns my heart."

Kagome blushed down to her breasts, and he followed the wave of colour with his fingers, the cut of the bodice low enough to show off the teardrop pendant nestled between her cleavage. It caught the light in the mirror, her breath hitching as his claws brushed her skin.

"I did not have this dress or your makeup or fancy hair in mind when I designed these," he whispered, tracing the chain back up to her neck. "All I pictured was you." Leaning closer, he kissed the back of her neck, hands moving down her arms. "How would the gems look on your skin? Would they pale in comparison to your eyes?"

Kagome gasped as he brought her wrist to his mouth, fangs dragging as he kept their gazes locked in the mirror.

"Why would you be thinking of me?" she asked, her scent darkening from sugared citrus to burnt honey.

"I am always thinking of you." He nipped at each finger. "Are you not able to say the same?"

Her flush deepened as she began to squirm. "Sesshomaru—"

"Do not lie to me, Kagome. Your scent coated this entire collection before I even put it on you. I know you have tried them on before."

"I've tried on lots of things before," she argued, biting her lip.

"Your scent would not be so potent with a single incidence." He retraced the line of her pendant, his mouth moving down to her shoulder, easily moving the strap out of the way. "Yet you have held back your praise of my work."

She shivered. "Because you'd try to give them to me!"

"I fail to see your point."

Groaning, she tried to turn in his arms, but he held fast. "You can't just give me everything in your store."

"I can do anything I wish. But I have not tried to give you everything," he said, eyes gleaming in the reflection. "Only these. You were my inspiration. Why would I not want to see you covered in them?"

"It's too much, Sesshomaru. I'm not suited for—"

"Then let us remove some of the things getting in the way," he whispered, pushing away the other strap of her dress, leaving her shoulders bare. Kagome gasped, holding the silk against her chest, but Sesshoumaru only grinned, pulling the pins out of her elaborate hairdo, dark waves spilling down her back.

"You can't—"

"I wish to see you in nothing but what I have made for you," he said, fingers brushing the lines of her spine and the curves of her hips. "It is what I have imagined from the beginning." He saw the interest in her eyes, desire drowning any lingering embarrassment even as she continued to clutch at her dress.

Sesshoumaru slid his hands under the folds of dark silk, fingers teasing her skin before cupping her breasts, a sweet moan escaping her lips as she arched into the touch.

"Let me see you, Kagome."

Still blushing, she slowly let the dress drop, the garment pooling around her feet. Sesshoumaru groaned at the sight, the only thing still on her body besides the jewels he'd provided being a tiny scrap of lace around her hips.

"I'm surprised you were able to get away with that." The way she avoided his eyes in the mirror made him smirk against her shoulder, and he rolled her nipples between his fingers. "Were you tempted to leave them off?" She hissed, grasping at his wrists when he pinched. "Tell me."

Kagome managed to nod.

"For me?"

"Who else would I do it for?"

"And yet I had to practically beg you to accompany me in the first place," he mused, nipping at the junction of her neck before soothing it with his tongue.

"When I saw which pieces you were taking—" She arched again, one of his hands sliding down her stomach before leisurely stroking her through the lace, her legs jerking.

"Did you want to model them for me?" His body ached for her, ached to give her exactly what she was begging for, but the image of her covered in his creations stroked his ego like nothing else could.

Kagome bit her lip, finally meeting his gaze in the mirror. "I wanted to feel as beautiful as you say I am."

He stopped in his descent, brow furrowing. "You are as beautiful as I say you are." Gripping her chin with his other hand, he turned her face towards him, claiming her lips in a heated kiss. She tried to turn in his arms, but he held her against him, rolling his hips to emphasize how far gone he was.

Whimpering, she pulled him closer, one hand buried in his hair, body warm and pliant as she ground back just as hard. His intricate half-do came loose in her fingers, licking his lips when he pulled away. "When will you understand that you are more precious than any of the gems in this store?"

Her mouth opened to protest, and he forced her to look in the mirror again, tracing the lines of each cluster of gemstones she wore. His fingers slid from her ears to her neck, then down her arms to her hands. "I could not have come up with such designs if my muse was not a goddess in her own right."

"You called me that before," she said, a smile tugging at her lips.

"I am hoping if I do it often enough, you begin to believe it." Holding her chin up, he kissed her shoulder again. "Do you think I would offer these pieces up to anyone? That I would react this way to anyone?" He brought her hand to his lips, the ring he'd shown her the first time she'd entered his shop col against his mouth. "The only one I will allow to wear this collection is you."

Amber eyes glowed in the moonlight as his tongue slid up to her ear. Kagome's breath hitched in anticipation, gaze glued to the hand teasing the underside of her breasts. "I could stare at you all day and still not be able to describe your beauty in full." She squirmed, skin flushed under his touch, and he bit off two claws, smirking at the hopeful glint in her eyes as he returned to the delicate lace between her thighs.

"What do you want me to do, Kagome?" Worrying her bottom lip, she spread her legs, giving him free access. "Do you plan on keeping those on all night?" he whispered, tugging at one side. The scent of desire spiked, and she hooked her thumbs into the dark lace, pushing them over her hips and down to her feet. As soon as she straightened, Sesshoumaru slid a finger inside her, eliciting a moan from her as he pumped it in and out.

"You are already so ripe," he said, other hand lifting a breast. "What have you been imagining since we got here?" He added another finger, curling them inside her, and Kagome's hips bucked, knees shaking as he swallowed her moan, tongue moving in tandem with his fingers.

She struggled to stay standing, whimpers of protest escaping between their locked lips as his thumb found the sensitive bundle of nerves above her opening. Sesshoumaru pulled back with a smirk. "Do not fret. I know exactly what you require." She moved to step away from him, and his grip tightened, fangs flashing in the reflection. "You are fine where you are."

That delicious blush returned as he lifted one of her legs, unbuttoning his pants before sliding his length against her core. The fact that he was still fully clothed aroused her more, the cuff of his tailored shirt brushing the underside of her breasts as he wrapped his arm around her, forcing her to arch back, both shuddering as he pushed inside her.

Kagome grappled for purchase, nothing in front of her to help keep her balanced—nothing to impede his view of her body as he thrust into her again. His name fell from her lips in a plea, and he was too far gone to deny her. He lifted her leg higher, his increased pace causing her body to twitch and the jewels around her neck to sparkle.

He'd never seen a more erotic sight.

"I want you like this, always," he said, voice low in her ear as her head fell back against his shoulder. "Wearing my jewellery—never allowing anyone to wonder whom you belong to."

"Yes," she breathed, muscles clenching as she pushed back against him. Her hand covered his, amber eyes zeroing in on the ring, and claws pricked skin as heat shot through him. If nothing else, he wanted—needed—her to wear the ring. It was the first thing he'd made for her after finding success, and though the crescent moon pendant was filled with sentimental value, it was the stone of her finger that boasted the biggest claim.

A claim he wanted above all else.

Intertwining their fingers, he thrust harder, giving her every inch as he tugged on her hair, claiming her lips again. He devoured her, unable to get enough, leaving her mouth glistening and bruised, nipping at her bottom lip.

"Sesshoumaru—I can't—" She clenched around him again, and he bent her over slightly, the different angle making her cry out.

"Come for me, Kagome. I want to feel you." His jaw clenched as she clawed at his hand, reaching back to grab his hip before she tightened around him on purpose, clearly intent on bringing him with her. "So greedy."

"I like when you let go," she said, using her hold on his hip to keep herself steady, pushing his other hand down her stomach to her clit. "When you can't stop yourself from touching me." His eyes bled crimson as she flipped her hair over her shoulder, the allure in her gaze one he'd never seen before.

"Do you think about me?" he whispered, almost dislodging himself as he looked down at her. "Do you fantasize about me touching you when we are apart?" All it took was a single nod, and he was thrusting again, rolling her clit between his fingers as he quickly brought her back to the edge.

This time, there was no teetering, no hesitation; her muscles fluttered then gripped him like a vice, Kagome bucking in his arms as she cried out his name. It only took a few more thrusts before he joined her, letting out a guttural snarl as he nearly lost his grip on her. Moaning softly, legs shaking, she straightened, using him for support as she tried to catch her breath.

"I'm never going to be able to look in these mirrors again," she murmured, a smile tugging at her lips as she kissed the underside of his jaw. Sated, at least for now, he held her close, returning the gesture against her temple. She hummed softly, then lifted the pendant between her breasts. "We should take these off."

"If you must." He met her gaze in the mirror. "We will save them for another day."

She shook her head. "You're not going to sell these, are you?"

"I never intended to do so."

The blush returned. She was so refreshing; even after being naked in his shop, her emotions still got the better of her. Sighing, she reached for the ring first. "Well, at least I'll get to look at them—"

Sesshoumaru placed his hand over hers, stilling the movements. "Not this one. This one you will keep." She attempted to brush it off, eyes widening at the intense expression on his face.

"But this is—"

"—exactly what you think it is."

Kagome looked down at her hand, bottom lip already caught between her teeth. "This was the one you showed me the first time I came in here."


She slowly raised her head, eyes brimming with tears. "Even then?"

Sesshoumaru pulled the crescent moon pendant out of his pocket, replacing the one around her neck. "Always."

Letting out a warbled laugh, she turned in his arms, grabbing the collar of his shirt and pulling him into a deep kiss, body moulding to his as the embers of desire roared back to life. He allowed her to tease him, tongues curling together, before slowly pulling back and lifting her off the ground. "Come, let us get you cleaned up."

Tucking her head under his chin, she held her hand up, admiring the intricacy of sapphires and platinum on her finger. "Is the lighting better in the shower?"

He smirked. "You are welcome to test it out."

"What about back at your place?" She grinned at his raised eyebrow. "I just can't tell! We might have to test it out in several places, so I can figure out where it looks the best."

His smirk softened, and he brought her hand to his lips, kissing the ring and then each finger before dragging his fangs across her palm. "Do as you please."


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