Bonds of Hope @kelseyalicia


It'd been violently storming for the past week. By their nature, children don't care to be shut up inside. Unfortunately, no one can control the weather conditions. Currently, Inuyasha and Miroku were in the former living accommodations. Due to their mothers being at work today, the landlady, Kaede, was babysitting them.

The landlady was a grandmotherly type of person—furthermore, a friend to all children. Everyone in the complex loved plus respected her. However, she knew when to lay down the law. At that moment, she stood in the kitchen preparing a pot of spaghetti. Inuyasha and Miroku stayed in the living room playing chess. Or more like Miroku strived to teach Inuyasha to play chess.

Miroku loved chess because of his father. His father was a remarkably experienced chess player. Whenever they played, their minds ignored all other intrusions. It was just them and the game. Inuyasha only felt indifference and disappointment with the game. He couldn't memorize what all the pieces were called. Nor could he recall how they moved.

"Okay, Inuyasha, this piece is called a 'rook," Miroku explained for the tenth time holding up the piece. Inuyasha only rolled his eyes and pouted.

"I could care less what these idiotic pieces are named. Do we have to play this stupid game? It's so boring!" he complained when Kaede stuck her head out of the kitchen.

"Inuyasha, mind your manners. Sometimes we've to do what others want to do. We can't have it all our way. It's also essential to at least respect others' interests. Even we don't like them ourselves."

He hung his head to hide the fact he was reddening. "Sorry, Kaede. I'll mind my manners more," he replied softly, which seemed to satisfy her. Smiling affectionately at the boys, she replied, "Good, now if you excuse me, I need to finish the pasta. Please conduct yourselves suitably while I finish that," as she returned to the kitchen.

Turning back to the coffee table, Inuyasha decided to pay attention to Miroku's beloved game, which they played for half an hour. Nevertheless, Inuyasha still found no satisfaction in the game.

Yet, both were thrilled when Kaede called them to the kitchen for lunch. Inuyasha worshiped noodles as he greedily devoured them. However, one stern glare from his babysitter was all he required to eat correctly. Kaede herself sipped some soothing ginseng tea as the boys ate their lunch. After they consumed their meal, she advised them to work on their workbooks while she did the plates.

Yet again, Inuyasha wished he belonged to an educational institution. His tutor, Jaken, at least given him some workbooks to learn from. They're the same ones Miroku and the others used in their school. The workbooks comprised fundamental materials. Arithmetic, grammar, reading, moreover other exercises. It's simpler to study when you'd like someone by your side. Miroku read aloud a short narrative from the workbook. Then the lads had to answer the questions that went along with it.

"Why do we need to learn colors and shapes?" Inuyasha desired to know when they reached the section of the book covering them. "Everyone learns the basics, Inuyasha. That's why we play "Memory," he mentioned to him the game they played in school. Learning to match colors and shapes wasn't Inuyasha's favorite thing to do.

However, he still preferred doing schoolwork with his friends. Truthfully? He enjoyed it when they got together and did their homework. It remained the closest Inuyasha got to being in school. Abruptly Inuyasha let out a howl as he clutched his jaw. He alarmed both his friend and babysitter with his explosive cry of anguish. Kaede rushed out to see what the matter was.

"Inuyasha! What's wrong?! Did you hurt yourself?" she frantically demanded as he held his jaw in suffering.

"My tooth! It's killing me!" he whimpered as some tears came out of his eyes from the amount of discomfort he was in. Kaede let out a sigh of relief that it wasn't anything too serious.

" I can give some ibuprofen for the discomfort. I'll also let your mother know you need to see a dental practitioner. Though that all I can do for now," she sympathetically told her charge.

"A dentist? I've to see a dentist?" he moaned, which made everyone blink. Miroku looked the most confused and voiced why. "Don't you got to the tooth doctor twice a year like the rest of us? Most of us have appointments every six months. You know, check-ups and cleanings. Or at least that's what happens to me."

"I've never been to a dentist, Miroku. So no, I don't know what one is like," his friend confessed. The two humans looked at him bewildered, not thoroughly comprehending why their friend has never gone before.

Izayoi greatly cared about her son's well-being. Yet, she persisted in being terrified that someone would discover their secret. Unlike, humans her son didn't have ordinary teeth. The one troubling him currently was his right fang. Even with the glamour spell, she worried about how it'd hold up if a tooth were extracted.

Either way, the half-demon prince's fang continued to throb. Causing him nothing except agonizing torture. Whether his mother liked it or not, they'd have to go to the dental practitioner for this one. Two hours later, Izayoi and Min returned from work. They'd paid Kaede for watching their sons. Then everyone left, leaving Inuyasha alone with his throbbing tooth. "Mom! Make it stop!" he couldn't help but whimper. His mother looked uncomfortable. "How long has your fang been hurting you, son?" she inquired apprehensively.

"It started right after lunch. It's been nonstop since then! Mom! Make it go away!" his cries got louder with each word he spoke.

"Well, Lady Kaede made it clear we can't dodge the tooth-yanker this time. I'll ask Min and Kita who they take their children to see. Hopefully, it will be low-cost, nor will anyone discover our secret."

"I hope so," as he held some ice to his jaw to try and alleviate the agony. His mother gave him some stronger pain relievers. She then called her friends to ask who their children saw for dental health. They recommend Dr. Hiroshi Yen. He operated at an office known as "Everyone Family Dental." They provided affordable care for low-income families or people on SSI.

If you're on disability, everything was covered by your insurance policy. They only charged adult cleaning for $77. (I have no idea how that translates into the Japanese currency. I'm just going with my own dentist prices.) Even Kagome's mother used them for her children. Thus, an ideal location to take Inuyasha. They quickly arranged an appointment for Monday afternoon.

Inuyasha wasn't looking forward to going to the dental practitioner. Even if he could alleviate the pain, it didn't stop him from thinking about all the horror stories he'd heard the kids talk about concerning the dentist. Either way, he wanted this taken care of. The quicker, the better since he didn't think he could tolerate this pain much longer. Monday quickly came along as a specific bus transported him and his mom to the dentist.

His mom frequently employed NCAT. A specific public transport system that accommodated people with disabilities or other limitations in getting around town. Seeing how she didn't have a vehicle of her own. You weren't required to pay for medical visits. You simply had to set up the ride ahead of time. Though it only available during weekdays from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm.

NCAT wanted 24 hours notice if you had to cancel. Furthermore, depending on the distances for anything other then medical, determined the price. Fortunately, seeing the jawsmith remained a medical reason. Therefore, the family didn't have to pay.

Though because you couldn't time doctor or dentist appointments, they gave them two hours. Therefore they'd be able to catch the last bus home. None of this genuinely mattered to Inuyasha at the moment. He just wanted his tooth to stop throbbing. The building the dentist's office was located in was small and modest. It was located next door to a Casey gas station that ran along with a four-way stop with a nearby Dollar General.

Of course, like any medical facility, there was a bit of paperwork to get through. Sometimes having to ask the front desk to clarify what the question meant to answer it correctly. Eventually, they filled it out before heading to the waiting room—an enormous white room with plenty of chairs and a flat screen in one corner. The half-demon child kept focused on the cartoon playing on the TV while his mother studied a novel she brought along.

Shortly an assistant came to get them. Seeing it was his first time, they allowed his mother to come back with him. Knowing the first time terrified a child more then any other. Before they settled into a room, they directed the family to the lavatory. After using it, they brought them into room four. Everything looked so foreign and scary to the six-year-old.

Izayoi helped him into a large reclining chair before taking a seat in the corner. She looked as apprehensive as her son. Still, the dental assistant reassured them nothing bad was going to happen. She needed to get some x-rays first. Afterward, the dentist would give him a check-up, and they go from there. The child didn't like having to bite down on some metal so they could take x-rays.

The results popped up immediately on the computer, which the assistant checked over. She asked them to sit tight while she went to get to the dentist. You could feel the terror rising in the room. Still, they had to remain calm. Nothing bad was going to happen. Their friends assured them of that. Promptly an attractive young man in pale green garb came in.

He introduced himself as Dr. Yen. He confidently explained all that would happen from here on out. The family braced themselves as the dentist went to work. First, examine the boy's teeth to make sure he didn't have a cavity. Next, the boy had to endure his first cleaning. Neither of these was comfortable for him. Despite being reassured they're necessary, it didn't mean they didn't hurt somewhat.

Finally, the dentist finished with his exam before he grabbed some gaze. "I'm going to remove the tooth bothering you gently. This will not hurt. It will be over in a minute." He proceeds to grab the throbbing fang before gently removing it tenderly. The minute it was gone, the anguish dissolved. The dentist glanced at the abnormal large canine tooth. It practically looked like a fang. Still, he placed it in a dish which his nurse took.

"Mrs. Toga, can I talk to you in private for a moment?" he asked to which the princess nodded. "I'll be right back, son." They stepped into the hallway before the doctor gave his report. "Well, his exam checks out fine. No cavities. Though I recommend, he flosses more. Though I'd like to express some concern."

"What is wrong?" she questioned fearfully.

"I noticed a few teeth are larger then I ordinarily see in children. Now, it's not a causes for concern at the moment. Everyone's teeth are different. All I've noticed were his enlarged canine teeth.

Please don't think its cause for concern, Mrs. Toga. Again, everyone's teeth are different. It's not the first time I've seen teeth larger then normal. Though that what made this so uncomfortable for him.

Again, making sure he's taking proper care of his teeth. Brushing and flossing twice a day. I'd recommend an electric toothbrush, as its more effective then a manual one. He'll need to come back in six months for a follow-up. Other then that, everything else is good."

"So you're merely concerned with the size of some of his teeth?" she asked to clarify.

"Yes, a few were larger then I'd like to see. However, other then their size they're all healthy. I believe the tooth fairy will still leave him a dollar no matter what its size."

Izayoi didn't know what the 'tooth fairy' was. She'd have to ask her friends to fill her in. Yet, she remained thankful. Nothing bad had come from this visit. Feeling relief, she and her child left to catch their bus home. Inuyasha, exhausted from the dentist's visit, went straight to bed when they came home. Seeing him sleeping, Izayoi knocked on Kita's door to fill her in on what the 'tooth fairy' was.

Kita raised an eyebrow in bewilderment that her friend didn't know about the traditional childhood figure. Shaking it off, she explained it to her neighbor. Once she finished, she mentioned something else.

This weekend there be a street fair near their home. She felt it'd be a great chance for all of them to bond. Plus a great treat for their children. The princess agreed it sounded like an entertaining idea. Though she asked if she could borrow a little money for the 'tooth fairy.' Kita laughed and gave her a little money. Smiling, the two friends said goodbye while Izayoi went to play 'tooth fairy' for her son. She hoped this would make up for the pain she put him through.

The prince was innocently thrown in the morning when he discovered money under his pillow. He asked his mother about it, and she told him what Kita had told her, only leaving out that the parents were the tooth fairy. Still happy with a little money, he went to play with his kitty. Sighing contentedly seeing her son play with his pet, Izayoi went to make a few phone calls. All the moms agreed to meet at ten on Saturday for the street fair.

Naturally, all the children were thrilled. The thought of balloons, games, rides, and visiting the petting zoo only filled them with enthusiasm. They almost burst from excitement waiting for the weekend. Saturday finally arrived as the families gathered for a fun weekend. Every child received a free balloon when they arrived. Inuyasha's nose was overwhelmed by all the potent smells.

Several different aromas, sights, and sounds. If he'd a tail, he'd be wagging it. The first thing the kids got to do was ride the carousel. The whole thing boggled the prince's mind. Never having seen such a strange contraption before. Sango and Miroku were in the front, with Inuyasha and Kagome in the back. Each riding a different horse but enjoying it all the same. The boys couldn't help but sneak glances at their crushes when they weren't looking.

Once they finished that ride, they headed to the tilt-a-whirl. After they'd gone on about six rides, they settled down for lunch: Chile dogs, french fries, pretzels, and soda. "These Chile dogs are so tasty! Almost as good as noodles!" Inuyasha exclaimed as he inhaled his food. His mother gave him a look.

"Son, I know you're enjoying yourself. Yet we don't eat like that. I don't want you to get indigestion. Therefore please chew your food properly."

"Yes, Mom."

"Well, these are the greatest pretzels I've ever had," Sango exclaimed as she and Miroku shared some cheese to dip them in. "Do you think we can get some cotton candy later?" Kagome asked her mother, who was tending to her baby brother.

"We shall see, Kagome. Let's worry about snacks later, sweetie. What do you think? We should go to the petting zoo next," Kagome's mother recommended.

"Yeah, let's do that! I want to see the piglets!" Miroku squealed excitingly.

"Why so keen on seeing the pigs, Miroku? Is it because you are one?" teased Sango, who avoid an elbow jab from Miroku. However, the mothers couldn't help but giggle at Sango's joke. They quickly finished their lunch before heading off to the petting zoo.

Loads of children were crowded around the petting zoo: piglets, goats, mallards, lambs, lamas, chicken, and one pony. The keepers gave some feed to the children so they could feed the animals. The creatures were quite docile until Inuyasha stepped into the miniature corral. As soon as the half-demon came near them, they started to get agitated and panic.

Quickly they got so dangerous the keepers were seeking to keep the children safe from the increasingly agitated animals. They didn't understand what was agitating them so much. Though, the young prince could smell the animal's terror directed at him. They could obviously tell he wasn't normal. Likely they could see through the glamour spell.

Quickly he left before things got too wild. Once he left, everything calmed down. No one notices once Inuyasha left the corral, everything settled down. Only his mother noticed, and she looked pained. The rest of the day continued to be quite delightful, topping it off with watching fireworks from the Ferris wheel—all in all, a great day.

Self-compassion first

Compassion is the most generous gift you can give yourself. Show yourself the same mercy, sympathy, and kindness that you bestowed upon others.

It's difficult to show compassion toward others if you don't show it to yourself first. Start with you, and then allow it to spread outward. It will, I promise.

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