Rangiku wiped away some of the sweat of her face with the back of her hand and then continued dragging more wood into their little hut. It was a warm day, probably the last one this year. Gin felt tired just watching her working so busily. Sitting in the shade of the big oak tree next to their hut, he felt quite comfortable. She had a point though, if it rained tomorrow all the wood would be wet. Last year they had been shivering on a particularly cold autumn day when there hadn't been anythig to burn. They had sat closely together then, their thin blankets wrapped around them.

Gin leaned back against the tree, his skin still as pale as in the spring. He held out his arm, sleeve pulled back and smiled. No, he would never get a bit of colour even if he tried.

She had though, the daily work for survival having left her exposed to the sun often enough. He hadn't really noticed that about her in previous years. For some reason he had become more aware of her lately, what she looked like. Her body had been changing, like his had. Somehow it was more obvious with her though.

Like it was now, as she bowed to get a branch that she had dropped. Her breasts moved as she got up again and continued her work. He liked looking at them, was a bit surprised how fast they had grown. They were about as big as the ones of the innkeeper in the 69th district... and that woman was thirty!

He had never touched Rangiku's breasts though, not since they had become like this. Lately they hadn't been as close physically as they had been before. Rangiku seemed more shy, preferred to change her clothes when he was outside. When he had walked in on her once, about two weeks ago, she had quickly put a blanket before her, seeming a little guilty that she no longer wanted him to see her like that.

With a smile he had left, but had felt strangely afterwards. Something had stirred in him, a need to reach out for her, feel her skin.

He hadn't told her that he had gone to the river then and touched himself there, releasing himself in the water, thinking about her hips and breasts.

"Aren't you going to help?" she asked, bringing him back to the now. Her hands were all dirty and there was a leaf in her hair.

Gin stood up, closing the distance between them. For a moment he studied her closely, without saying a word. She held his gaze, but he could hear her breathing going a little faster, like she had suddenly forgotten how to do it normally.

He reached out with his hand, paused for a moment, to add extra tension to the moment, and then got the leave from her hair. It slowly floated down in seemingly irregular movements, caused by the little breeze.

"There you go," he said. Without doing anything else, he headed back to his previous spot and sat down again.

She snorted, but was confused enough to refrain from arguing about it. She just headed out for more wood, glancing back at him once, a question in her eyes.

The end.