Bleach is © Kubo Tite, Viz, Studio Pierrot, Shueisha, etc. This is a nonprofit fanwork.

Just Take a Look, It's in a Book
by Fushigi Kismet

"Ah!" Isshin said, swinging his arms out wide. "What a great, glorious day in the world outside!"

"Swing wider," Urahara said, pushing his hat down over his eyes, "you just missed me."

"You need to enjoy life more!" Isshin said, determined to be oblivious.

"Look," Urahara said, "I need to take care of some things. Can I trust you to behave yourself for an afternoon? Try not to stand out too much - we just made a narrow mistake and your spirit level's still too damn noticeable."

"Meaning?"

"Do something quiet."

"Very well," Isshin said, "I will," he turned in a big circle as he walked, surveying the shops on either side of the street, "go there!"

His finger was pointing at a bookstore. Urahara doubted the wisdom of letting Isshin loose in a store full of anything, bound pieces of paper or no, but he figured it wouldn't do any more harm than letting a bull into a china shop, so what the hell. "All right. Do some browsing, amuse yourself; I'll be back in half an hour."

Isshin was already striding into the store, and Urahara whipped out a list and began surveying sites.

Books, Isshin thought. Books, books, books. Books were wonderful things! Full of- excitement! He wondered what people in the human world wrote about. He plucked a thin volume off a rack and began flipping through it quickly and then more slowly as he realized that the pictures were "photographs" and not just that, they were photographs of scantily -gasp, here was one COMPLETELY! WOW- women.

Books were exciting. He gulped and reached out to put the first one away and pick up another.

"Excuse me, sir," a sweet voice said behind him and he whirled, TWO offending volumes in his hands, and came face to face with an-

"Angel," he croaked.

"I'm sorry, sir," the angel was saying. "We don't permit magazine browsing in the store."

"Of course!" he said, reflexively shoving the magazines at her until they almost touched her nose, then hastily pulling them away and hiding them behind his back, watching her expression anxiously. "Because read that as you will and mankind will never learn to appreciate the pure and untainted beauty of the human body! My name is Kurosaki Isshin, doctor. What's yours?"

She looked at him for a moment, then put her hand to her mouth and laughed and laughed until she bent over double and he stared, fascinated, at the way her hair bobbed around her shoulders. Wiping tears from the corners of her eyes, she said, "Shirotani Masaki. Can I help you with anything today?"

His tongue felt like lead in his mouth, his throat was suddenly as parched as though he had been trekking through a desert, and he finally realized why it was he had come to this world.

"Um," he said, bending down on one knee, "uh, could you do me the honor of marrying me?"