Defense

Chapter One: Beginnings

DISCLAIMER: If it's not familiar to the anime/manga, then it's mine. Although, I doubt you'll find anything like that in this particular story.

This is from Bleach and involves Ichigo and his inner Hollow, Hichigo. There will be a bit of OOCness( gotta love it). Probably a few spoilers, but what else is new?

Also, it's gonna be shounun-ai or whatever because I felt like attempting it.

EDIT: (Placed in all chapters.) I've received a small fortune of complaints that readers get all of these confused, so I've decided, finally, to condense them into one story. I'm not editing them, so any and all errors will stay. I'm afraid that if I start going through, I'll want to change things instead of just minor fixes. When I wrote this story, it was one of the very first I had posted, and I don't want that "first" to change.

Break

Break

Ichigo Kurosaki was in his bedroom, sitting on the most prominent piece of furniture: the bed. He ignored the yellow irises and black sclera looking at him curiously from a seat to his left but didn't want to put out the soothing, long-fingered, slightly-clawed hand running through his attention-drawing, orange hair. Giving a sigh of contentment, he rested his head against his other half's shoulder.

"Are you happy, King?" Hichigo asked, never stopping his hand going through the other's hair. His distorted voice, after a time, had come to be a comforting thing to Ichigo, so it was a moment before the pale teen's question was answered.

"If you'd stop calling me that, the world would almost be right," he replied with a wry tone in his voice, but one that prompted the Hollow to ask what he meant by 'almost'. "Well, it was to get my friends off my back to call you Hichigo, only using the first letter of Hollow and my name. It annoys me because you don't have a name that is completely your own. That is why I say, almost."

"Then give me a true name, King." The Hollow sniggered when he heard Ichigo's angry snort. "All right…" he whined before finishing, "Ichigo."

"I've got two in mind. I was peeking through an old book I found around the house. I'm guessing it was my…mother's baby names book," Ichigo said, unable to stop the pause. An arm was circled around him, the other hand never ceasing its infatuation with his hair. "One, Akuji, means 'dead and awake' and the other, Apollo, means 'destroyer.' Don't take the second offensively, either, because I know you love to destroy things."

"I kinda like the 'dead and awake' part because, in a sense, I am dead but awake…still alive," the other replied. "I guess 'Hichigo' is gone, eh, partner?"

"The one who was represented Hichigo is still here, so no, 'Hichigo' isn't gone. He has his own one word representation. I'm glad you like your name, Akuji. You wouldn't believe what I went through to find it," Ichigo replied with gritted teeth. "Dad thought I'd gotten a girl pregnant. Yuzu was happy that I was getting a start for family life. Karin…well, Karin just didn't care. Then, oh wonderful times, I nearly killed Keigo, and Rukia deemed me perfect to be stared at constantly, but the others just grinned and went on. It's amazing, though, that they bought the lie about you. They still haven't figured out that you're my inner Hollow."

"I'm good at hiding myself. At least until I get bored and start talking to you with other people around. It's a good thing that you finally figured out how to multi-task and separate your activity at that time with listening to me. You don't space out anymore," Akuji stated. "My only…well…fear, I guess, is if someone does find out, gathers a mob, and starts yelling something like, 'Kill the Hollow!'"

"I'd let you take control and knock them all down, but not kill them." Ichigo was very stern in his belief to not kill unless as a last resort.

"You're the King," Akuji replied, internally laughing a few moments later because Ichigo was startled by the blue tongue in his mouth.

"What was that for?" he asked, leaning over and sliding the window shut, glad that they were in a spot that couldn't be seen.

"I felt like it," the pale one answered as a bang resounded from Ichigo's father slamming into the window. "Want me to-" He was cut off by his human/Shinigami half's mouth on his own. "I'd better vanish. You know where to find me," Akuji said when they heard the slightest of footsteps in the hallway then disappeared.

Ichigo lay down, crossed his arms behind his head, and stared at the ceiling. Rolling over, facing the wall, he pretended to be asleep. He heard the door open and he lifted his foot, catching his father in the face with it. "I'm getting too good for you, old man!"

"I am not old!" Isshin Kurosaki whined to his son with tears streaming down his face. Ichigo walked out of his door and down the stairs to dinner. "DON'T TURN YOUR BACK ON-" Isshin was cut off when Ichigo's fist came flying. Soon, they were in another father-son brawl.

"Daddy! Ichigo! Stop that!" Yuzu yelled as the two clobbered each other around the kitchen. She wanted to beat both of them with the frying pan she was taking from the cabinet.

"Just ignore them," Karin said, sidestepping so that, when her brother punched her father across the room, Isshin didn't crash into her. "I hope you know that we have company," she said blandly.

"We do?" Ichigo asked as he dodged another come at him by his father. Another foot to the face sent his parental figure careening into the living room. "Calm down, old man!" They all ignored Isshin's whining to the picture of their mother. "Who's got the front seat to a Kurosaki-dinner special?" he asked as he stared piteously at his father.

"Guess who?" a woman's voice asked as she covered Ichigo's eyes.

By the breasts on either side of my head, I'd have to say, he thought to himself before answering, "Rangiku."

"How did you know?! Captain Hitsugaya always knows, too! How do you do it?" the peppy Lieutenant of Squad Ten asked with awed curiosity on her face.

"Matsumoto, how can anyone not know?" the Squad Ten Captain asked with a bored face.

"Hey, Toshiro, how's it going?" Ichigo asked, ignoring the correction, as was customary, from the Captain. "Have you seen Rukia and the others? How's Byakuya?" he added, remembering just how…ruthless Akuji was with him.

"Well, aibou (partner), he nearly killed you, what do you expect?"

"I suppose…but you didn't have to nearly butcher him."

"That's what he would've done to you if I hadn't intervened, or did you forget the blast of lightning that was shot through your shoulder, the hole in your foot, and the numerous slashes he'd inflicted on you?" Akuji's voice was a sarcastic yet furious tone.

"All right, all right. Thanks for the concern," Ichigo replied as he listened to Hitsugaya recount a message Rukia wanted to pass to him. Mainly, she said that he should be careful, take out as many Hollows as possible, and keep the 'nutwad I call a friend' (a.k.a. Renji) in check. He had to agree that her adjective to Renji fit extremely well. Throughout the conversation, Ichigo was very grateful that they had chosen to return to his bedroom.

"Captain Kuchiki also sends his regards with a message," the Captain continued. "He says, 'Tell him I say thank you. He shall know what it is for.'" Toshiro opened one eye to watch Ichigo's reaction, which was a small smile.

"What was it for, Ichigo?" Rangiku asked, leaning forward in curiosity and not realizing that she was giving an ample view of her chest to any guy interested.

An indignant shout came from his other half, causing the teen to mentally snigger at him. "I helped him realize that family always comes first," he said to her, easily shaking away the want to look lower than her face. Thank God for Orihime. She's made me immune, he thought to himself.

"We need to be getting back. We were sent to check up on you for the Seireitei's sake. They, obviously, do not need you to come through there again," Hitsugaya said as he opened the window to Ichigo's room. "Stay safe, Kurosaki."

Rangiku stood and hugged the teen, but not against her chest, which Akuji was thankful for. "Take care, Ichigo. I don't think Rukia would be happy if you showed up at Seireitei for reasons other than to rescue her," she said seriously.

"Of course. You too, Rangiku." The woman then followed her Captain out of the window. Ichigo walked over to his bedroom door and locked it to keep any odd people out before doing the same with his window and closing the curtains. He knew Yuzu would have dinner ready in about ten minutes, which made him wonder why his father had spontaneously attacked him. "Hey, Akuji," he said to his inner Hollow, who had just appeared behind him.

"Hey, yourself, King," Akuji replied, the name causing Ichigo to turn with a slight glare. At the pose Ichigo was met with from his other, he was slightly confused as to what had gotten the pale teen angry. "What's with the lady Shinigami, anyway? Don't she know how to dress herself decently?"

"Come here, Akuji; you worry too much," Ichigo said, pulling the Hollow to him by his crossed arms. Ignoring the indignant shout, which seemed to be his specialty lately, the living of the two kissed the other, careful of the Hollow's fangs. "See? No reason to worry."

"Heh, you might want to give some more proof of that claim," Akuji retorted, pulling the human back to him. Five minutes later found Ichigo with his shirt horribly wrinkled in the back, all gratified to Akuji's hand going up the back of said shirt. Although, the eldest Kurosaki sibling couldn't complain. He rather liked the feeling of his other half's claw-like, black nails gently teasing the skin of his spine. "Well, that was fun."

"And Rukia calls Renji a nutwad," Ichigo said, getting a blank glare from the Hollow, who was trying to arrange his shihaksho in the manner it was supposed to be in, not the wrinkly and rumpled mess Ichigo had turned it in to. The yellow irises seemed to take on a golden sheen for a few moments when Akuji grinned at him. "The gold eyes fit you. They make you seem a little…well…warmer, I suppose," he said.

"When I'm normal happy, Zangetsu says that happens," the other replied. "You'd better get down to the kitchen, or your dad is gonna come flying in here in some semblance of a karate move again. I'll be here when you get back," he added before pressing a kiss to Ichigo's forehead.

"All right," he said before leaving out of his door and going downstairs. "It smells good, Yuzu." His compliment startled her as she hadn't heard him walk in. "Sorry if I scared you," he apologized as he reached into the cabinets that were still too high for his little sister. Pulling out bowls, plates, and glasses, he set the table. Karin came wondering in a little later. Soon, they were only waiting for Isshin. "What's taking Dad so long?" Ichigo asked, sighing.

"Ichigo, what is this?" the voice of their father asked in a serious and nearly angry tone. Ichigo turned around to face his father, but his eyes widened drastically when he saw him holding Akuji by his neck in the air. "Answer me, Ichigo. Why was there a Hollow in your room?!"

"Hey…Ichigo… Old man's a Shinigami…Captain level," Akuji choked out. "Surprised me… Couldn't summon Zangetsu…" His white shihaksho was pink in some places and red in others with rips and holes throughout it.

"Karin," Ichigo said, looking at her. She nodded, knowing he wanted her to watch his body when he pressed the Shinigami amulet against his chest. "Release him," he said to his father, brandishing Zangetsu. Isshin tossed the Hollow to his son carelessly. Ichigo caught him gently, though his other half still winced. "You're gonna be fine, Akuji. I won't let anyone get away with hurting you."

"I promise the same…Ichigo…and you've been hurt deeply," Akuji replied with a grimace.

"You want control," Ichigo said to him through the link in his inner world. Akuji nodded. "Will you be healed if I relinquish it?" The Hollow shrugged. "All right, but let us get out of the house to a more open area… Go back to the inner world and wait for me," he said before Akuji vanished. "We, Dad, are going to take a trip to the park… I hope you don't mind." After that, Ichigo flash stepped out of the house.

Shortly, they were standing in the park, away from all the people. "Are you going to tell me why you are helping a Hollow, Ichigo?" Isshin asked, drawing his Zanpaktou.

"Because he's my Hollow. Yes, my Chain of Fate has been severed before," he said, shocking the older man. Ichigo landed in his inner world of horizontal buildings and vertical skies. My mind is really screwed up, he figured. "Akuji, you're up. I freely give you all the power I have."

"And I willingly give you mine," Akuji replied. To Ichigo, he looked a little better since returning to his inner world.

Unknown to the two, Zangetsu was standing on his pole watching with a smile as the two finally came together. He had the hope that, now, when Ichigo fought, he wouldn't turn the one person who would risk everything to save him away. He closed his eyes for a few moments, giving the two privacy. "I am proud of you both," he said, drawing their attention to him.

"How long were you standing there…?" Ichigo asked, his eye twitching. He knew exactly how long when the smile turned into a smirk.

"That is beside the point. You have finally come together, Ichigo and Akuji. Let us hope that you can fight in the same manner," Zangetsu answered. "Lend your power to each other…become one entity."

"How, exactly, do we do that? You do know we're two of a kind, right?" Akuji asked, not wanting to have to become one with Ichigo if that meant he'd never see him again.

"Do not fear, Akuji, for you can do this at will. Either Ichigo, you, or both of you can be in control. No, it will not be like a Cerberus with three heads that do different things. When you both are in control, you are one," he answered, making Ichigo wonder why he'd never told them in the first place. "It is written on your face, Ichigo. I never told you because you would never have gotten along with Akuji, making it unstable. Let us say that your…relationship is useful for more than only displays of affection." After that bit of insightfulness, Zangetsu seemed to vanish.

"Well…lets try it," Akuji said to his partner. "Ready, aibou?" Ichigo grinned at him before his inner world fell away from them both.

Isshin was standing there, waiting for his son to make the first move. He wanted to smack his son, drag him home, and give him the spanking of his life, but he knew there was something more to the Hollow business. What are you hiding from me, son? he wondered. That slipped from his mind when his son started convulsing. He wrapped his arms around himself and thrashed about, stumbling as he did so. "Ichigo…? What has happened to you…?"

Ichigo and Akuji had never felt such pain. They weren't sure if anyone else had either. They wanted to scream, but couldn't. They wanted to cry, but couldn't. They wanted to collapse, but couldn't. They wanted to escape, but couldn't. Oh sweet God, this hurts like hell, they thought together. Together… That's how we'll get through this: together.

Isshin watched in morbid fascination as a Hollow Mask formed on his son's face. It was white as bone and had a patch of red streaks on the left side of the forehead and another on the left cheek. It started to crumble and disintegrated completely before reforming on the left half of his face. In the eyehole of the half-Mask, Isshin could see the yellow iris and black sclera while his son's normal, yet anger-filled brown eye was on the right. "Ichigo…what has happened to you?!"

"We're fine," they answered. "And we do mean we because we're both in here: Akuji and Ichigo." As they spoke the sharp teeth of the Mask moved with their jaw. They raised Zangetsu, pointing it at Isshin. "We have only one condition: If we win, you will speak of this to no one. You won't tell anyone about us being able to do this or about Akuji. Neither will Karin and Yuzu. No one will find out."

"I agree, but I have a stipulation as well. If I win, you will kill that Hollow. If I don't win, I'll go a bit further for you and add that no one will harm it and it will be welcome in my home. Also, I'll call it by the name you gave it," Isshin replied and, after their nod, signifying that they agreed, the battle began.

They were careful in fighting against Isshin because they didn't know what his Zanpaktou was capable of. They were also worried about the fact that they couldn't use Bankai…for an unknown reason. All worries were cast aside when Isshin landed a hit across his son's chest. Ichigo allowed Akuji's berserker style of fighting to take over, but he kept his Hollow's bloodlust tightly chained.

Zangetsu's hilt wrap was twirled around until the sword was rotating over their head. Isshin was confused about the change, and they knew it. It was easy for them to battle him with an unpredictable way a fighting. Soon, Ichigo's way of fighting took over, confusing their opponent further. Calculating quickly, they found an opening and knew that it would bring a heavy cost to use it. Parrying Isshin's blade allowed him to bring it around in a stabbing pose. They charged at him and felt the blade slide through their stomach and out of their back, but they ignored the pain as they knocked Isshin to the ground with Zangetsu's edge at his neck.

"We win," they declared, sure of this at the paleness of the father's face at his son's blood on his hands, which were trapped between them, not allowing him to use Kidou. Isshin nodded in a shocked fashion, yielding the fight to them. The Hollow Mask crumbled from his face as Ichigo sent Akuji back to their inner world before the pain from the sword in his stomach exploded.

"Dad… Pull it out…" he said weakly as he fell to the side, cringing when it jarred the sword. "Akuji… I'm going to need to borrow a bit of your power… We'll bleed to death if I don't…" he sent to his Hollow, knowing that he could use rapid regeneration.

"You're an idiot, Ichigo… Why didn't you let me take the pain?" Akuji asked after appearing beside him. He looked over at Isshin and could see that the man was still in a shocked state. Turning back to Ichigo, he carefully grasped the hilt of the sword. "This is gonna hurt like hell, Ichigo."

"I…know…" he replied before his eyes opened wide as the sword was, as swiftly and gently as possible, removed from his body. He coughed, feeling like he couldn't get air to his lungs. "Akuji… I can't…focus… Help…" The Hollow bit his lip, not knowing what to do before looking over at Isshin.

"Hey, old man! Get up! Your son is bleeding to death over here! Are you a doctor or what?!" he shouted before looking back at Ichigo. "I…don't know what to do…" he said helplessly. I'm glad this thing repairs itself, he thought before ripping the left sleeve of his shihaksho off then tearing it into a long strip. He then pulled the top of Ichigo's uniform down off his shoulders and around his waist. "Hang in there, Ichigo," he whispered, wrapping the strip of cloth that had been his sleeve around the bleeding teen's abdomen. "Don't move around too much, okay?" he asked and, getting a nod, stepped over to Isshin. "Listen; your son is bleeding to death over here. If you don't pull yourself together and help him, I'm gonna help you return to the afterlife faster than you can say strawberry pocky." He jerked the man up by the front of his uniform and shook him.

Isshin finally came back to his senses and stared at the pale teen who looked so much like his son. "Okay, stop shaking me." Akuji not only did that, he dropped him and went back over to Ichigo. The father of three picked his Zanpaktou up from the ground and sheathed it before kneeling beside his son. "You…Akuji, was it?" A nod. "You might want to go back to wherever it is Ichigo keeps you. You don't want to be seen. I'll take him back to the clinic and try to patch him up."

Akuji ran his hand through Ichigo's hair. "I usually take over after he gets hurt this much…but he's trying to protect me from it." He sighed before snapping his eyes to Isshin. "Take care of him. I'm tired of seeing him hurt," he said before vanishing.

"Orihime…can…help…" Ichigo said to his father. "Won't…ask…questions…" Why does this hurt so much? he wondered as his father lifted him from the ground.

"I am sorry, Ichigo. My Zanpaktou, even when not called out, multiplies the pain that a wound inflicts on the body to a staggering degree. The fact that you are still conscious amazes me," Isshin said, getting a grin from his son. "I should never have harmed you, be it for the Hol…Akuji or to see your skills."

"Didn't…even use…Bankai…" Ichigo replied and was almost dropped. "Shocked?"

"You can use Bankai?! So can I! I was a Captain, after all," Isshin replied with his normal enthusiastic manner as he flash stepped home.

"You…know…Byakuya Kuchiki?" Ichigo asked, grinning wider when his father nodded. "Squad Six Captain…I beat him with Akuji's help. Senbonzakura, when scattered, is a beautiful sight… Especially Kageyoshi."

"You fought his Bankai form and survived?" Ichigo nodded before his father placed him back in his body and went to his own. "All right, Ichigo. You can pass out now or I'm going to have to make you. I'll call Miss Inoue after I've gotten some actual bandages on you, along with disinfectant and plenty of PEROXIDE!"

What did I do to deserve this? Ichigo wondered before falling unconscious. He arrived in his inner world to a punch in the face from Akuji. "Ow! What was that for?!"

"You idiot! Why didn't you let me take over?! Why must you protect everyone…?" he asked, finishing in barely above a murmur.

"Because I swore to myself that I would… If I can protect you, I'll try my hardest to do so. Besides, if that Hollow Mask fully forms…we'll lose each other," Ichigo answered, looking down the sideways building to the ground. "I don't want that to happen…"

"Don't you know that I can stop it after it forms half-way?" Akuji asked with an indignant tone, sounding as if Ichigo had just insulted him. The pink tint that covered Ichigo's cheeks told him the answer. Akuji glared then grinned before slugging the other teen in the face again. "That was payback for not knowing," he said as an explanation.

Ichigo retaliated by tackling him, resulting in a wrestling match. "Ha!" he shouted when he pinned his other half. "I win!" His mind was changed when Akuji rolled over, pinning him. "Aw hey, that's not fair…"

"All's fair in love and war," Akuji replied, kissing him quickly before Ichigo could roll them over again. Flipping around, the Hollow had his Shinigami half in a headlock with his arm behind his back. "If you protect everyone, Ichigo, who is going to protect you?" he asked seriously, tightening his hold a little when Ichigo didn't answer.

"I don't want anyone protecting me… I don't want to lose someone like I lost my…my mother," he answered as all the fight left his body with the sigh he let out.

"Let me protect you, Ichigo. You can't lose me unless you lose yourself." Akuji's words sank into Ichigo's head, getting a smile from the orange-haired teen.

After a moment, he offered, "Why not protect each other?" Akuji smiled a genuine smile at that. "Dad said he was going to call Orihime after patching us up so we'll live long enough for her to get to us." Akuji released his other half and was promptly kissed. "If I had known you could control your Hollow instincts, I would have never worried…"

"I started to make myself control them after that bit with Byakuya, after you forced me back. You were afraid that I'd kill him because I couldn't control myself all that well in a fight. Of course, I remember punching your lights out because of it," the Hollow replied, grinning a bit as he recalled forcing Ichigo into a wall then kissing him for the first time.

"That was when I realized that you were only covering up for trying to keep me alive by saying it was all based on self-preservation. When those Mod Souls were taking us through those games over Orihime and Chad…that must've been when you were training yourself. You didn't pop up when we were hallucinating about being trapped in those cases," Ichigo filled in before his face dropped blank. "I'll never forget all the times you've told me I suck, either." The Hollow had the grace to blush, which showed in an unbelievably bright red on his pale face.

"Yes, well… At times, you really do. Your fight against Kuchiki was pretty pathetic in my regards. You were afraid of something…afraid to call all of your power to you," Akuji replied, failing to force the blush away. Deciding to take revenge, he nuzzled the skin behind Ichigo's ear and received a strangled gasp for his efforts.

"A-Aku…Akuji…" The Shinigami wanted to smack the Hollow, but he also didn't want to stop him. "B-body's waking up," he said around another strangled sound. "Come after Orihime leaves, would you?" Akuji nodded and stole another kiss before releasing Ichigo.

The teen groaned as he came to, looking through an orange barrier when his eyes opened. "Don't move, Ichigo. Miss Inoue isn't finished yet and you don't want to destroy what she's already fixed." It was his father's voice.

"Still hurts…" he mumbled loud enough for them to hear. "Orihime…thanks for this… You really are a lifesaver," he said to the red/orange-haired girl. She blushed extensively and started making excuses that she wasn't all that great. "Really… You are worth more than you lead yourself to believe…" She shushed herself and smiled.

"Almost done, Ichigo," she said to him with her usual cheer. A slight smile curved his lips before the orange shield vanished. "All set and ready to go!"

"Thank you, Orihime… I owe you one," he said, sitting up. They talked for a few minutes about some kind of alien descending to kill him for taking its mate, which was the reason why she believed him to be injured. "She's an odd one…" Ichigo said to his father after she left, a sweat drop sliding down his face. "I want you to meet Akuji properly, Dad…the way you should have. Without me hiding him and without you trying to kill him."

"All right, Ichigo. I was waiting for this… I'm surprised he hasn't popped up yet," Isshin replied and stood, his doctor's coat falling to his ankles as he pulled the disposable, bloodied gloves from his hands before washing them in the sink. "Well, where is he?"

"You have to wash your hands before you shake mine? Now that is a compliment," a distorted voice said to the man as he turned around, seeing a ghostly-pale hand extended in greeting. "Although, Mr. Kurosaki, it wouldn't have come to this if I could've summoned Zangetsu."

"You can't not be threatening to save your life, can you, Akuji?" Ichigo asked and received a smirk as his answer. "Figures," he grumbled as he slipped off the bed, but, when his feet touched the linoleum floor, he nearly screamed, "COLD!" and jumped back up onto the bed. "Damn it! What'd you do, Dad?! Skate on ice-packs across the thing?!"

"Keeps my patients from getting out of that bed, doesn't it?" Isshin asked cheerfully, seeming like it made his day that he'd irritated his son.

Ichigo glared as he attempted to unwrap the bandages around his stomach, but the knot was in the back. "Damn it to hell," he grumbled, foregoing his want to be rid of the things. He felt a feather-light nail trace a path down his spine before the knot came loose. "Thanks, Akuji," he said, looking back to the Hollow as he rid him of the bothersome wrappings. "Don't even," he sent to his other half as Akuji slipped his arms around him.

"I'm not going to kiss you in front of your dad. You insult me, King," the other replied, causing Ichigo to growl at him. When Akuji sniggered, he leaned back forcefully, surprising the Hollow and knocking him off his feet. "Now you've done it, King," he said in a mock-angry tone, knowing full well that he'd brought it on himself.

As the two wrestled, Isshin smiled as he left the room, glad that his son could still be a kid. When his son's shout, "GOOD GOD THAT'S COLD!" reached his ears, he couldn't help but burst with laughter. Ichigo must've been pinned. A bare back on cold tile will do that to someone, he thought to himself before glomping one of his daughters in a hug.

"I may not want to kiss you in front of your father, but I will now," Akuji said after flicking the door shut with his foot. He softly ran his nails across Ichigo's neck, grinned when he shivered, then kissed him, like he'd said he would. "I think you like my nails more than I do, Ichigo."

"So what if I do?" The Hollow smirked a bit before it turned into a smile. "I think you're going soft on me," Ichigo stated, staring again when his other half's eyes shown in a golden color. "I think we could make your last name Apollo… In Greek mythology, he's the God of the Sun. That's what your eyes look like when they turn gold," he suggested when Akuji's hand started running through his hair again.

"It sounds better than Shirosaki, at any rate," Akuji replied. "Hmm… Akuji Apollo… I like it."

"While we're on the subject of names… I didn't miss the pun you made with mine about strawberry pocky when you threatened my dad." The teen glared at his Hollow, comforting hand in his hair or not.

"I like strawberries. They're…tangy," Akuji retorted with a childish pout, expecting Ichigo to miss his insinuation completely.

"So, you're saying that I am…tangy?" Ichigo growled the question out between clenched teeth. Akuji blinked, surprised that the thick Shinigami had understood what he meant. A grin was Ichigo's answer. "You're an asshole."

"You're a whole ass."

"At least I'm a smart one."

"I'd rather be dumb than have a huge head."

"You're the airhead."

"Ah, but I have something in mine."

"I would rather have an empty head than be an egomaniac."

"Your pride could suffocate someone."

"Nah, that's you overflowing into me."

"SHUT UP, ICHIGO! AKUJI, TOO!"

"Holy damn, what was that?" Akuji asked, turning his head toward the door.

"That, my fine friend, would be Karin," Ichigo replied before being glomped by his other half.

Break

Break

End Chapter One

Like I said, I wanted to attempt shounun-ai or however it's spelled. I can, somehow, see Ichigo with his other self, but not some f—ked up version. Yes, I can be a gentle soul, which I slightly incorporated into Akuji.

To explain the naming process: I put in that Ichigo found his mother's old baby names book because I went to a website to find the perfect ones and, yes, I do like names that begin with an 'A', if you couldn't tell.

I might make a sequel, don't really know. If so, it'll probably be as humorous as this one. Humor is the king of genres, then Romance/Humor, then Action/Adventure. Those are the best!

Review, if you'd all be so kind. By the way, if you wanna flame, I have plenty of marshmallows, and, if you have a penname, have the tillywackers to sign in so that I can happily point out WHY I have my story a certain way that you don't like. (For those of you who don't know, tillywackers means balls. I don't care if you're female or male.)