Strange Days

One-shot. Yachiru comes to a realisation. Because she's older now, she can't remain indifferent around Kenpachi, even if he acts that way.

A/N: My first Bleach fan fiction, so I hope it turned out all right. If not, have pity on me readers! I really do try. :snort: This is set when Yachiru is older.

Edit - A/N: I edited this because… I must've been on drugs when I wrote this and the errors are just blatantly obvious but the general storyline remains the same. I removed some Japanese so as not to confuse some readers and to allow the story to flow better.

Hah, do people get as sick as I do with anime couplings? Yes, there are implications, but not as disturbing as some things in this world…

-

It was the afternoon and as the sun was setting, Yachiru waltzed out of her room, humming a tune and smiling as she spun across the hallway.

It was happening. It was definitely happening. Yachiru felt extremely giddy. She waited over 300 years for this moment and she had finally hit it. She was finally filling out. Now at the wonderful age of 14 (as considered by humans), Yachiru's body was filling out slowly.

Was she pleased?

Passed that; to the point that she could go insane from happiness. There were many people who would hate, absolutely hate growing up but Yachiru was thriving in the adolescent light.

Then again, she found everything something to be happy about.

As Yachiru entered the sitting room where Kenpachi sat, somewhat in deep thought, she practically squealed out, "KONBAN WA! KEN-CHAN!"

Even though, she was older now, she still liked calling her captain, 'Ken-chan' since she had grown accustomed to it.

"'Yo, Yachiru…" Kenpachi replied in a distracted tone.

Yachiru tilted her head to the side. "Hey, Ken-chan! Thinking too hard could be bad for you!" she joked, giggling as she waved her hand at him trying to attract his attention.

Kenpachi simply grunted in response.

At that exact moment, Ikakku and Yumichika walked into the room, both having returned from training with the rest of the 11th squad.

Yumichika sighed, placing a hand to his cheek. "How exhausting…"

"What are you talking about? You didn't even do anything! I was the one training!" shouted Ikakku, obviously in a bad mood.

"Of course I wasn't doing anything! I'd ruin my beauty today if I…" Yumichika trailed off as he noticed Yachiru. His cheeks grew red and his eyes sparkled. "Yachiru! Today…today your beauty…your beauty is…! AMAZING! YOU'RE SIMPLY…SHINING! You're almost as beautiful as me—but still—! Beautiful!" Yumichika ranted on.

"What are you on about this time?" Ikakku yelled in an irritated way.

"Obviously you wouldn't know, Bald-wonder." Yumichika taunted.

"WHAT? I AM NOT BALD!" Ikakku screamed as his head shone in the light.

Yumichika ignored Ikkaku as he sighed contently while he stared at Yachiru. "So…beautiful…"

Yachiru smiled cheekily. "Why do you think so?" she asked.

"You've changed from that annoying little brat and are slowly blossoming—unlike me, who has always been a flower in bloom. Don't you think so, Kenpachi-taichou?" asked Yumichika.

Brought out of his thoughts, Kenpachi looked slightly surprised at Yumichika. "What the hell are you on about?" he asked.

"Nobody respects me…!" sobbed Yumichika, turning away and making a mad dash for the corner of the room causing Ikkaku to sweat-drop.

Yachiru stared at Kenpachi. Had she been expecting some sort of response?

"Well, I think I might get some air outside…" muttered Kenpachi, standing.

Ikakku and Yumichika glanced at each other in surprise. That didn't sound like Kenpachi at all.

"Uh… Kenpachi-taichou…" muttered Ikakku.

"What? What do you want now?" growled Kenpachi.

Ikakku sighed in relief. That sounded more like his captain. "Ah, no, it's nothing." Ikakku quickly said, shaking his head.

Kenpachi exited the room and after short contemplation, Yachiru decided to follow before Yumichika spoke up.

"Yachiru-fukutaichou," he said respectfully unlike how he had spoken to her earlier.

"What is it Yumichika?" Yachiru said as her back faced him, her head turned slightly to the side in acknowledgement.

"Your appearance may have changed but your attitude hasn't. You can't keep referring to Kenpachi-taichou as 'Ken-chan'. That way, you'll never grow up." Yumichika explained in a tone that sounded as if he meant no offense.

Silence hung heavy in the air.

Yachiru forced a smile. "I…I don't want things between Ken-chan and I…to change…" And with that, Yachiru dashed out of the room and into the cold starry night. She shivered and hugged herself to keep warm.

At that moment she noticed Kenpachi sprawled out leisurely on the grass, staring at the stars. To her surprise, her cheeks began to burn as she watched him. She raised her hand and slapped herself hard, succeeding in bringing tears to her eyes.

Why was she blushing? She had been Kenpachi's lieutenant long enough and yet now, what was wrong with her?

"'Yo, Yachiru," Kenpachi's rough voice called, "what are you doing out here?"

"Huh… AH! That's right! I came out here to tell you something important t-taich-chou, but if you don't want to hear it, I won't say it, yup!" Yachiru lied, smiling smartly as she folded her arms in front of her in a defiant manner.

"What? What is with the formalities? Taichou? Since when did you call me that?"

Yachiru hated it when she was blushing. "Uh… I thought that it would be… better… not to… use that name…?" Yachiru said as if it were more of a question rather than a statement.

"Yachiru, since when did you decide that? Have I ever decided not to call you by the name I gave you when I first found you? Hey, Yachiru?" Kenpachi asked.

For some reason, Yachiru felt like she was being scolded. "K-Ken-ch-chan…" she managed to stammer out.

"Are you cold Yachiru?"

Yachiru was alarmed by the random question. "Um—! No! Not at all! I was just—um—ACHOI!" Yachiru sneezed.

"Achoi?" Kenpachi repeated, sweat-dropping. "That was a sneeze? In any case, you are cold," Kenpachi said, unfolding his arm in Yachiru's direction.

Cheeks burning, Yachiru was too stunned to move. Kenpachi was acting indifferent. Like she was still the little bubbly girl that rode on his back wherever he went. Well, she did still do that but…

"Ken-chan…" she muttered. "Ken-chan, is always so nice!" she finished putting on a pained smile.

She had said it herself hadn't she? She didn't want things to change and yet…

Her cheeks were burning furiously as she lay down and placed her head on Kenpachi's shoulder and he closed his arm around her. It reminded her too much of when she was younger.

She had grown used to the sight of blood, yet it was different to when she saw the blood of the people she lived with. The animals more like. Kenpachi had slaughtered them for his own reasons and Yachiru felt a release; the new sense of freedom.

"I'll call you Yachiru." Kenpachi had said that day when she had crawled up to him.

"Ken-chan…" Yachiru whispered, clenching a piece of Kenpachi's clothing as her eyelids grew heavy. "Arigato…"

On that day, they had both found their names. They had both found each other. As long as she knew that fact, she was happy, even if Kenpachi acted indifferent. She was happy that she had an identity, a name because of Kenpachi. As long as she stayed by his side, she would stay happy. Even if…he still thought of her as a kid…

Yachiru's breathing became steady and even. She had fallen asleep.

Kenpachi sighed. "Yes Yumichika…" Kenpachi said aloud, a bitter smile on his face, "I really think… she has changed… Yachiru…"

-Owari

Ending note: Tell me what you think, yes? Took me a while to get this up but I hope you enjoyed it. Please review.