The New Protector @fantasywriter345
A New Partnership

Chapter 3: A New Partnership

Two days later, Kagome and Bankotsu were ready to go to find jewel shards. Kagome was given a new pair of priestess clothes since hers was in tatters. Before they decided to leave, they learned something new about the mysterious monk, Shinichi.

"So you're a demon slayer?" Kagome asked.

"I was. But I retired early after I married and settled down." Shinichi said.

"Oh, so that's where you learned all those moves." Bankotsu said. Now it made sense to him. He had heard that demon slayers knew all kinds of fighting styles. He couldn't believe that he was easily defeated by a retired demon slayer. Bankotsu wanted to learn those moves.

"Hai." Shinichi said, "But after my wife and children were killed by demons, I decided to live here and make this a temple for survivors of villages that were attacked by demons." Shinichi said.

"I see." Kagome said. She knew that there were many people get killed by demons and try to find a safe place to live. It was hard to find that kind of place these days.

"I never thought I would meet the Shikon Miko in person." Shinichi said.

"How did you know?" Kagome asked, shocked.

"I saw the jar of shards wrapped around your neck when I was treating your wounds." Shinichi said.

"Wait, did you see me half naked?" Kagome asked in a panic tone.

"I'm afraid so." Shinichi said with a closed eye smile. Kagome quickly placed her face in her hands. She was so embarrassed at that moment. She couldn't believe that a monk had seen her half naked body. She won't be able to marry because of this.

"Before you set off on your journey, there are some things that I believe you will need." Shinichi said as he stood up and went into the hallway with Kagome and Bankotsu behind him. He slid open the door and went to the closet part of the room. Then he brought out a sword.

"I want you to have this sword." Shinichi said, holding out the sword to Bankotsu.

"Me? Are you sure? It looks like an ordinary sword." Bankotsu said, pointing at the sword with his left eyebrow arched. The sword looked like a katana, but there seemed to be a calm and powerful feeling to it. It was like as if the weapon was waiting to be used by someone.

"This was my weapon that I used to fight against demons." Shinichi said.

"Really?" Bankotsu asked, curious.

"Hai. I figured that it might be a better use to you than to me." Shinichi said.

"Thanks, Shinichi." Bankotsu said as he placed the sheathed sword around his waist.

"You're welcome, Bankotsu." Shinichi said, smiling, "Make sure to take good care of it."

"Don't worry, I'll take care of it." Bankotsu said.

"Good. Well then, you'll need to get ready for the journey ahead. I presume you're leaving tomorrow?" Shinichi asked.

"Hai. It would be best if we get an early start." Kagome said.

"Very well. I will give you some provisions for your journey." Shinichi said.

"Thank you very much, Shinichi-sama." Kagome said with a bow.

The next day, Kagome and Bankotsu set out to find the jewel shards. Shinichi watched the duo as they walked further and further down the path.

I don't know what your destiny is, Bankotsu. But it's possible that it is tied to Lady Kagome. Make sure to protect her with your whole heart, Shinichi thought, for she has a shattered heart that needs to be put together again.

"So where should we start?" Bankotsu asked as they walked along the road. It had only been two hours since they left temple.

"Well, we should head towards the next village to see if they have any demon troubles. There is a slight chance that the demon might have a jewel shard." Kagome said.

"Good point." Bankotsu said, rubbing his chin. He had to admit that this girl, Kagome, was smart. She seemed to always have a plan.

"There were times that Inuyasha didn't want to help a village that had a demon problem, even if the demon didn't have a jewel shard." Kagome said.

"Quite the jerk I must say." Bankotsu said with his hands behind his head.

"I fully agree with you, Bankotsu-san." Kagome said.

"San?" Bankotsu asked, brow arched.

"Well...you are older than me." Kagome said, "How old are you anyway?"

"Well, I was around seventeen when I died. But I'm probably in my early twenties or possibly thirties now." Bankotsu said.

"Oh, I thought that you were the same age as me." Kagome said.

"How old are you, Kagome-chan?" Bankotsu asked, curious.

"Seventeen." Kagome said.

"Seventeen, huh?" Bankotsu asked.

"Hai." Kagome said.

"You're quite a powerful miko at the age of seventeen, Kagome-chan." Bankotsu said, smiling.

"Thank you, Bankotsu-san." Kagome said.

"Just call me Bankotsu. 'San' makes me feel like an old man." Bankotsu said.

"Alright. But only if you call me 'Kagome' as well." Kagome said.

"Deal." Bankotsu said as he smiled at Kagome who smiled back at him.

They finally arrived at a village. It turns out that a yōkai was causing some real trouble. The yōkai was an oni that kept killing all of the game in the forest and making it hard to collect nuts from the trees as well. Not mention that a few people have been missing whenever someone entered that forest.

So that's where Kagome and Bankotsu were right now. They followed along the dirt path that lead them to a tree filled with nuts. But it wasn't a pretty sight though. There were skeletons that were split in half all around them. There also fresh bodies around as well. It made Kagome feel uneasy whenever she saw something like this. Then Kagome felt a familiar pull throughout her body.

"I sense a jewel shard nearby, Bankotsu." Kagome said as she readied her bow and arrow.

"Which direction?" Bankotsu asked as he unsheathed his sword.

"It's circling around us." Kagome said, eyeing the area as she and Bankotsu stood back to back. The air around was still, but it was partly quiet. They waited for their opponent to make a move. Then 'it' attacked. Kagome quickly placed a barrier around her and Bankotsu. A creature that looked like a man sized weasel appeared with a sickle at hand and banged against the barrier with its sickle. It jumped a few feet away from them. The creature was breathing heavily as it seemed to be waiting for Kagome and Bankotsu to come out of the barrier. Kagome could see that the shard was on the sickle.

"It's a Kamaitachi." Kagome said as the creature continued to attack the barrier.

"A Kamaitachi?" Bankotsu asked, brow arched.

"A sickle weasel yōkai that appears out of nowhere and attacks unsuspecting victims with wind-based attacks." Kagome said. The yōkai threw some sort of a wind attack at the barrier. But the barrier was still up. Then she noticed that her barrier was starting to break. The creature seemed to notice it as well.

"Sounds like a formidable opponent." Bankotsu said with a smirk.

"The shard is on the sickle." Kagome said.

"So all we have to do is to separate the weapon from him, right?" Bankotsu asked.

"Hai." Kagome said, nodded.

"Alright then. Let's do it!" Bankotsu said with excitement. Then the creature headed towards them again. When the weasel yōkai got close to them, Kagome let down the barrier and Bankotsu headed towards it and cut the weasel's arm, that held the sickle, off. The yōkai screamed in pain as it held its hand (or paw). Unexpectedly, Bankotsu sliced off its head. The head rolled away from them. Kagome walked over to the sickle and plucked it from the blade. The shard was instantly purified. She took out her bottle that contain her collection of shards and put the shard inside.

"Wow, that wasn't so hard, huh Kagome?" Bankotsu asked as she walked over to him. Kagome placed her hand on the creature's head and it turned to ash. Then she walked over to the body and purified it as well.

"Hai, I thought that we would have more trouble with that kind of yōkai. But we managed to defeat it." Kagome said.

"Hai, so far we make a pretty good team, Kagome." Bankotsu said, smiling.

"I agree with you, Bankotsu." Kagome said, smiling back.

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