Title: Just Wait

Pairing: IchiRuki

Spoilers: After Soul Society, but there's really not much mention of what happened

Disclaimer: Well of course I own Bleach- don't you know? That's why I'm writing this fanfiction, isn't it? (I'm being sarcastic by the way- Kubo Tite owns it)

Once you hear even breathing coming from the two young girls, you slip quietly out of the room and make your way down the hall. You hop lightly over the creaky spot just in front of his room and make your way inside. It is nearly three o'clock in the morning and he is not there, having left after dinner to fight Hollows.

Not that you have been awake all this time out of worry or anything. No, that is ridiculous. But it is raining and that fool does have a test in the morning and you know he would be loathe to have his grades slip. That is all.

You would also like very much to hit him, hard, for not allowing you to go with him. The fool must think he is invincible, the way he growled earlier that you are still weak from hunting Hollows the night before.

You ignored the small voice telling you that he is right, and before you could even form the proper, gut clenching, slap-in-the-face retort, he was already flash-stepping across the city.

And so now you wait, and your mind wanders idly, touching on memories and faces. You wonder why Renji likes taiyaki, or why Yachiru fukutaichou's hair is pink, or if Hisana nee-san ever waited with such anxiety for Byakuya nii-sama.

As soon as that thought ends, you slap your hand to your forehead, mentally scolding yourself for entertaining such foolish questions. That has nothing whatsoever to do with the situation at hand anyway. From what you've managed to glean, your elder sister was very much in love with your adoptive brother, and she was the only one he ever showed his warmth to.

And, just to be clear, that is nothing at all like you and the man whose room you are in. No. You do not feel anything for him, except the occasional pangs of guilt, and you know he would yell at you for having them. There is no warm feeling in your stomach that rises achingly to your heart, and you do not blush when he gazes intensely at you without realizing it, and you most certainly do not care if he does come back.

But dammit, you think to yourself, where is he?

And just as soon as you've decided to go to someone for help, there he is, having leapt in through the window. There he stands, and you want so much to grab him and kick him, but you refrain yourself when you see that he is wet with rain and blood.

Fool, you hiss. If it did not mean waking those slumbering down the hall, you would scream your insults at him.

And that idiot has the nerve to grin, despite the fact that his lip is split and there is a lovely purple bruise forming on his cheek. But the smirk lacks his usual cockiness and he looks just a little tired, though you know he would angrily deny it should you point it out to him.

So instead, you grab his sleeve and push him roughly onto his bed and pull up his desk chair so that you can heal him, all the while muttering curses at him.

And this time, while you are healing him with the bright glow of your kido, you let your hands linger just a little on his skin, taking in his blood and scars. No tears come, tears borne of anger and sadness and fear, and possibly happiness that he has come back for another night, and for that you are grateful.

Once you have healed the large gash that runs up his forearm and over his abdomen, you move to fix the damage done to his face, and that is when you see that the fool has fallen asleep. His brow is relaxed and smooth, except for his clotting blood, and you think that it is remarkable when he shows this other side of his, when he looks so vulnerable, even if he only does it when unconscious.

You let your hands linger the longest on his face.

Then you settle back in his chair, barely aware of how tired you feel, and gaze at him, your jaw clenched to hide your emotions. Slowly, you feel the tension rise from your shoulders as you allow the strong presence of his life wash over you.

And you sit there and listen to the rain tapping a song against the house.

When the sun is streaming in through the window and birds are chirping near the window, that is when you wake up. You find yourself in his bed, the covers pulled up around you, and when you sit up, you notice it is nearly noon and his school bag is gone.

And so you smile gently and hope, without much conviction, that he does horribly on his test.

A/N- I hope it's not too cheesy- this is the first time I've used this writing style, and I'm really not too sure about it. It took me about half an hour to complete, so if there are any mistakes, please let me know. And in case it's not clear, Ichigo puts Rukia in his bed before leaving for school. Also, taiyaki is a fish-shaped pancake filled with bean jam. In the manga character pages it says that that's Renji's favorite food. (I love knowing these little details). Anyway, I'm really sorry for any OOC-ness as well. But at least it is IchiRuki goodness, right? If you want to review, I would much appreciate it. Thank you for reading.