TRAGEDY OF A PLAY

Scene 3: PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT. Eh?


Some realizations could really rob the sanity of a man. For an instance, Isshin's son ended up cursing himself for the nth time this evening. Ichigo kept his eyes nailed on the ceiling of his room. He tried to collect bits of his brain that had been shattered when the realization, courtesy of Uruhara's superb invention, hit him really hard.

Ichigo ran a hand in his bright hair and heaved a sigh. He could not believe that his mind produced a spam of unbelievable and shocking thoughts. These thoughts had the power to make his vein shudder. Ichigo's mind considered the thought that there's only one percent chance.. maybe, just maybe, he loves Rukia. Carrot-top mentally slapped himself for thinking such friggin' idea. That's absurd. Ichigo thought. He, Kurosaki Ichigo, fell in love with the most annoying person? the girl who beat the shit out of him, that she even invaded his dreamland, that whenever she succeeded getting under his skin alive she still manage to crawl into his…well.. his…

h-e-a-r-t.

yes. Ichigo preposterously affirmed. That puny she-devil from hell was unaware that she trespassed in his heart and at the same time, ran a circus in his head every now and then… yes, heart.. wtf the thought made Ichigo bolt in his lying form and sat.

A creak on the door made Ichigo's entire thoughts jump into its proper box and lock itself up in the farthest corner of his already-liquefied-mind. His scowl deepened.

"oi. Ichigo!" It didn't take a genius to decipher who's the owner of that voice. It's none other than the object of his distress, Rukia Kuchiki.

Ichigo automatically froze as amber eyes met purple ones. "Are you finished reading the script?" Ichigo knew that he lose control of his eyes. His gaze never rather, couldn't leave Rukia as she entered his room, reached his bed and sat beside him. Rukia clad in a simple white shirt with bunny embroidery and short black shorts somewhat made Ichigo uneasy.

Carrot-top's nervous system started to function again when Rukia incredulously looked at him. "What's with the stare?" She asked.

". . . " or so it seemed, Ichigo's system malfunctioned again. Rukia looked at him helplessly and sighed. He looked like an idiot. She thought. A cute idiot.

The fact that the girl was only inches away did not help Ichigo's current mental state. A sheet of paper caught his line of view making his jaw hung. Indeed, A premonition. Script was equal to damnation.

Ichigo's plan of a clean getaway was thwarted when Rukia spoke. "Our first scene is act 2, scene 2 wherein Romeo meets Juliet." Rukia gave another helpless, distasteful glance at Ichigo. "Mizuiro called. He said that he want to see our scene tomorrow."

"Huh?" Alas! All system stopped the dramatic malfunctioning. Everything started to sink in.

Ichigo could see that Rukia took a deep breath. Bad response, he thought. "Mizuiro said we should practice our scenes now!" for a second Ichigo considered if his eyes were emmentropic. Did he or did he just saw a streak of pink crept on Rukia's cheeks? He shrugged.

When Romeo meets Juliet.. Now Rukia's voice repeatedly occupied Ichigo's mind. What the… His mind rattled. (Medic! Medic! Nervous breakdown!)

"EARTH to Ichigo!" the object of his heart, body, mind and soul leaned closer looking at him. "What the hell is happening to you? Do you want to practice or not? It's very simple. Just say what it is that you want!"

Really? Ichigo thought. Rukia.. I don't want to practice. Not right now.. not when my mind is muddy clear . not when I'm deliriously trying to stop these hormones.. not when I'm in this state of insanity.

He lifted his head and was in the verge of nodding when Rukia cut him off saying, "..Be reminded that if you say no, I'll beat the crap out of you."

So where's the smiling Rukia who invited Uruhara an hour and few minutes ago? Dammit! Ichigo stared at her, dumbfounded. Ichigo hypothesized that his current situation was definitely not because of her unusual outfit but because of something else. Whatever disease causing me this madness sure is toxic! Carrot-top noted.

Ichigo looked at Rukia for what was like eternity.

"What?" The girl stood with arms coiled in front of her chest. Rukia looked at him with blazing eyes. Moving her hands to lay on her hips, she waited for her companion's answer which was obviously a'yes'.

"uhh…" Ichigo cleared his throat. Never in his life had he looked this lost. "Practice?" he let out a nervous laugh. "Practice makes Perfect.." but nobody is perfect so why practice? What's the point oh bloody hell!

….

Menacing blue-violet eyes stared at Ichigo's inner most soul. Rukia waited for him to straighten his tongue for the nth time this evening. Yes, Ichigo told her that he had somehow managed to scan the whole script. And another Yes, that's a lie. As stated earlier, he spent his time brooding in his room and so the script was untouched.

Rukia was really unhappy. Ichigo should drop his crazy antics and start practicing his lines without flaws. She sighed. "Stop stuttering." the petite Kuchiki plainly said. She's not just sure if he did it on purpose to piss her off or what. "We've been standing for an hour and yet you haven't finished a single line."

Great! This is my first time doing a major play and he's not participating. Rukia's eyes glinted with rage. "Mind you Ichigo, your line marks the start of our conversation! If you keep stammering every word, what do you think will happen to our play.. and most especially my grades?"

"Hey! I'm trying to do my best ok? So stop shouting at me when I'm concentrating!" Carrot-top, a tad infuriated, yapped. He kept wondering why Rukia act concerned about this play.

Ichigo scowled. "Is the play that important to you?" he softly asked yet. Lately, all the mind-shattering realization had been tamed in the deepest corner of his mind. Ichigo felt relieved that he gained his self-control but honestly, it took a lot of energy to ignore that buzzing feeling in his chest when Rukia's only feet away. :)

"Yea! It is very important to me! Ichigo you Idiot!" the midnight-eyed girl ignored the furious reactions Carrot-top. Rukia nailed her eyes at him and said, "My brother and the rest of the Gotei thirteen will watch our play! You moron!"

Gotei 13? Darn! Ichigo knew that Gotei 13 was equal to, open parenthesis, Kenpachi Plus 1Yachiru multiplied by Byakuya squared, close parenthesis, multiplied by 12 Vice Captains minus Renji minus Yachiru (since the 6th suqad fukutaichu portrayed Paris in the play and Yachiru's already mentioned.) plus 8 El Capitan divided by cosine squared. Wait, did I heard it right? Gotei 13?Damn! Ichigo dazedly looked at Rukia as his mind processed 'gotei 13'.

"I…chi….go!" (boiling point alert! Alert!) It was too late to duck that flying fist directed on Ichigo's face.

–toink!-

"what the?" Carrot-top looked at Rukia and wondered how the hell did he fall for her?

"Practice.. now!" Rukia's icy-cold stares sent shivers down Ichigo's spine. And for the second time that evening, carrot-top thought he needed an Ophthalmologist. Did he or did he just saw a spark of sadness in her eyes. "Just.." a pause. "just tell it to me if you don't want me to be your Juliet." Rukia gazed outside the window and took a deep breath.

"Rukia.." Ichigo stunned, looked at her. Does that mean she really wanted their pairing? I as Romeo and She as Juliet? His heart started to double its pace. "Rukia.. I.." again, Rukia didn't let him finish his sentence.

Rukia smiled sweetly. "if you don't want me to be your Juliet, you can.." She rested her left hand in Ichigo's shoulder.

"Rukia.. I.." Ichigo's voice surprisingly sounded gentle. He couldn't believe Rukia could handle such drama. Did she really like .. him?

"You can simply back out and I'll demand for another Romeo. Very simple. Right? So come on," the dark-haired teen fished for her cell phone. "call our dear director and tell him you'll back-out and he needs to find someone to replace you ASAP.." Rukia shoved her phone in his face. "here.."

The disease sure is spreading in his brain, he thought.

Death-berry cleared his throat. He swiftly took Juliet's hands earning him a frown. "if I profane with my unwortheist hand," Romeo looked at her intently. "this holy shrine, the gentle pain is this.." suddenly, some thoughts block Ichigo's mind.

Juliet couldn't help but be amused that her Romeo would not let her go and search for another. But, fate seemed to frown at her as the strawberry in front of her started to crackle, again.

"mmmah-my liiipp..ss, to.. to..two blu.. blublushing p-ppilgrims rrready" Straberry swallowed hard. Beads of perspiration were evident. His lines mark the start of the first words of Romeo and Juliet to one another and it ends with a kiss. The thought made Ichigo shudder. "..sttttandd" for once, he agreed to what she's saying, he was undeniably an idiot and he's not acting like himself at all. "tututu-tooo smoothh tha-at rough-f t..."

Rukia snatched her hand from his grip and frowned. "you're still stuttering."

Silence

Blocks of ice started to form a huge wall between them. It appeared as if Dea Tacita enveloped their conversation giving both of them a gift of uneasiness with each other.

Silence.

Both Ichigo and Rukia didn't know how to break that ice. Good thing someone(?) did it for them.

"Ho-ho-ho… ohh.."

The two figures directed their gaze at the source of the voice.

"What do you want Kon?" Rukia bluntly asked. She must admit, Kon knew what the meaning of right timing is. But nevertheless, she hid that appreciation she felt and frown at the doll.

"Nee-san," the plushie put his hands up as if praying. He bent one leg and cast his button-eyes on her. "be my Juliet and I'll do my best to put a smile on your face." His heartfelt statement was cut short.

"Shut up." She hissed and crossed her arms in front of her chest and returned her gaze to her Romeo. "want to try it again?" She raised a brow. "go."

Ichigo snatched his copy that was on his bed and scan the lines. Once ready he faced her. With all his strength he opened his mouth. "if I profane th.." ok that's it! "th… this…."

"I..chi…go!" something snapped inside Rukia. "if you can't do it…" She walks towards Kon, sharply picked the plushie up. "let me teach you how!"

Ichigo watched in horror as Rukia put her hands in Kon's mouth and searched for the gikon pill. Only split-seconds before Ichigo realized that the pill was forcefully pushed on his mouth.

-TBC


Shinji: Drop a line or two.. thanks

Hiyorin: so what the heck is gonna happen? i'm not thrilled at all.

Byakuya: Patience. Patience. Wait for the next chap..

Reviews/comments; constructive criticisms are very much welcomed.