Disclaimer: I don't own Bleach and I'm not making any money off of it.

Premise: This will be a collection of Ichigo/Rukia moments, varying in length but all existing in the same continuity, though not necessarily chronologically. I'm using this as a place to challenge my writing skills, so you may see some varying styles throughout this series and maybe even a few experimental chapters. As the title suggests, metaphors will most likely abound.

Ratings: There will be no sex and no cursing. But there may be some adult themes, so I'm rating this PG-13.

Continuity: This series starts with Ichigo in college, so we're several years past the anime and manga.

Feedback: Give me constructive criticism and I'll give you better stories. Thanks!

(This first part isn't what you might think from the title…)


Part 1Making Love

The only times they aren't fighting with each other are when they are fighting Hollows. In those moments, he and she dance across each other's paths, he with his long sweeping strides and she on her toes in a graceful dance. There is the pure-white ribbon-slash of Rukia's sword and the Hollow stands as a frozen statue, icicles hanging off the hole in its chest. Ichigo is in her wake, slipping past the billowing of her night-black robes and the sweep of her obsidian hair as she turns to watch him leap through the air and swipe his sword through the sickly opal mask of the Hollow. It isn't white. He can't call it white—not after seeing Rukia's Zanpakuto for the first time all those years ago.

And he wonders, as his toes touch the ground and his stance collapses into a crouch to break the impact, what would his Bankai look like next to hers?

Standing slowly, he watches as the Hollow disappears, feeling her coming toward him from behind, knowing that she will be beside him soon and waiting… waiting…

What they are doing is forbidden. Shinigami do not fight together—not like this—sharing opponents, sharing the battle-high, sharing reiatsu. He doesn't know why they started, but he knows now why it is taboo.

The only times they aren't fighting with each other are when they are fighting Hollows. Then, they are making love.

He glances down at her next to him, her cheeks flushed and lips slightly parted. It reminds him of the first time he showed her how to make a snowman, the cold reddening her skin. But she seemed to belong there, in the billowing mass of white snowflakes, and as she stood on his lawn, looking up at the sky and opening her mouth to catch the snow on her tongue, he'd thought she might be an ice sculpture—

HOLLOW. They both turn simultaneously, sensing the second Hollow coming from behind. A moment later they see it, large and ugly and foaming at the lips. This time he takes the lead, and flash-steps ahead, drawing the Hollow's attentions with low blows to its torso while she soars by overhead, swinging her leg around in a spin that cracks the Hollow's mask, but doesn't break it. And he knows she is dragging things out, that she wants more.

So they continue weaving past each other under the sparkle of midnight stars, to the song of the wind whipping through their robes. Every time she attacks he feels it, the swell in her reiatsu washing over him with the taste of her inside, his own returning like the under-toe of a wave as he strikes the Hollow again—another slash to its leg, a loaded punch to the arm, a whip-kick to the stomach.

Finally the Hollow screams, one long anguished sound of barbed wire and fangs that rips through their souls before its mask crumbles under the wear of their attacks. Then, it is gone.

They stand motionless in between moments of time, before he says her name gently. "Are there any more?" he asks.

She is breathing quickly, short gasps of air that interweave with the soft breeze. Reaching into her pocket reluctantly, she pulls out her cellphone, letting her sapphire eyes drop to the screen. He waits for her to look up again because he wants to see that color in her eyes before it fades. It's a color he's sure only he knows about.

When she meets his gaze, it's already almost gone. "No. There were only two."

He turns away, looking up at the sky and hefting his sword over his back, hand lingering at the hilt. "Well, I guess that's all then."

"Of course that's all," she says, with characteristic harshness.

He shrugs, and they begin walking back to his dorm. They don't speak again until they reach his front door. Staring at the doorknob, he says, "Tomorrow night at my place again?"

She smirks. "Eight on the dot. If you're late I'll beat you with my sword."

Already turning the handle and carefully timing his movements, he scoffs and says, "I'd like to see you try."

He catches a glimpse of her brows lowering over an angry glare as she raises her fist to punch him, but he's got the door closed safely between them before she can deliver her attack. He tiptoes to his room even though he makes no sound as a Shinigami, glancing at his roommate as he falls back into his body that is sprawled out on his narrow bed. Yawning and stretching sore muscles, he puts his Substitute Shinigami badge in the drawer of his nightstand, hell butterflies fluttering inside of him at the thought of tomorrow night at eight.

He sleeps to the lingering scent of her reiatsu on his.