Title: Pretty In Pink
Summary: Ichigo has an odd last request.
Feedback: Yes please, YAY reviews!
Pairings: Heavily implied RenjixIchigo
Disclaimer: I do not own Bleach or the characters I'm just borrowing them for fun.
Warnings: Slash, don't like, don't read, character death.
Author's Note: This how amazingly talented I am, I have found a way to mix humor, and tragedy. Wow am I special. So, this idea came about when I randomly got the image in my head of Renji in a pink tux, and it made me laugh so much I just had to use it. I hope you like it, please REVIEW!
It was an end that they had known was inevitable. They had always expected it to come. They didn't know when, or where, or who, or how, but they had known, that one day, come it would.
So, as Renji sat there, struggling to stop the bleeding, the tears the flowed from his eyes were not denial, but acceptance. Acceptance of the fate he had always dreaded, but known he couldn't avoid.
"Hold on," he whispered to the limp body he held in his arms, "Please, just a little longer. It isn't time yet."
The body moved, arching in pain, gasping as his life drained away. Orange hair blackened by blood, black robes in tatters, a zanpakutou, broken by his side. Soft brown eyes opened, gazing about unseeingly, filmed over with the pain of his final moments. "Ren…?" he gasped, his eyes searching.
"I'm right here, Ichigo," Renji whispered, cuddling his dying lover closer, "I'm right here, it'll be alright. They'll be here soon, you'll be fine." He spoke the words automatically, but they both knew that this time they weren't true. No one was coming, they wouldn't be fine.
"I love you, Ren," Ichigo breathed, his broken body slowly beginning to relax.
"I know," Renji replied, the words catching in his throat.
"Promise me something…" his voice was fading, he was drifting away.
"I already know, don't forget to live, move on, all that," Renji said. It was a pact they had made each other a long time ago, back when the war had began, back when they had first realized that eventually, this day would come.
"No," Ichigo shook his head, "Something else."
"Anything," Renji swore.
"Promise… me…" but he was forced to pause as a violent fit of coughing wracked his body. Blood dribbled down his chin as he shook, his eyes closed weakly in pain as a thick, wet sound filled the air. At last the coughing stopped and he was able to continue, "Promise me… that you will…"
"What, Ichigo?" Renji prompted. Ichigo's eyes were roving vainly again, his sight long gone. His body relaxed, he wasn't in pain anymore. He was fading away and his mind was having trouble clinging to his train of thought.
"Wear… pink… to my funeral," he gasped, his head sagging limply.
Renji stared. If the situation had been any different, he would have laughed, but as it was he was simply extremely confused. "P-pink?" he stammered, maybe he hadn't heard right.
Ichigo nodded weakly.
"Because you'll look funny," was the simple reply, "It'll clash horribly with your hair."
Maybe in his last moments, Ichigo had gone insane, Renji decided, that was the only explanation to his seemingly random babbling.
"People will laugh," Ichigo breathed, "They'll be happy. They should be happy."
Renji was quite certain that his eyes were popping out of his head. But the scariest part, was that Ichigo was beginning to make sense.
"Promise me, ok Ren?" his eyes were closing, he was almost gone.
Renji didn't answer for a moment, still in shock, attempting to wrap his mind around the strange request. "Yeah," he answered at last, "Yeah, I promise."
A faint smile crossed Ichigo's bloody lips, "Good," he whispered.
"I love you," Renji whispered, his voice breaking as he felt Ichigo's body go completely limp. His love was gone.
He closed his eyes, clutching the body tightly to his chest, threw back his head, and let out an unearthly howl of anguish.
By the time he arrived back with Ichigo's body, his tears had dried, and after that he cried no more.
Everyone was deeply hit by the loss. For a while nobody really seemed to know what to do. At first they avoided Renji cautiously, tiptoeing around him as though afraid he would suddenly explode on them, but Renji did nothing. In fact, his routine varied little. It was as though he had simply gone back to the time before he had met Ichigo, and nothing had changed.
Those who knew them knew that this wasn't true. He felt the loss of Ichigo just as much, if not more than they did. But he wasn't in denial either. He had simply already made his peace with it, and was moving on, just like he'd promised.
The funeral was held in Soul Society, and everybody came to mourn their lost comrade and friend. Ichigo's family and close friends from the real world came too.
The day dawned sinfully bright, the birds singing merrily as though that day was no different from any other. All of Soul Society was somber, the already black uniforms seeming more austere than usual.
The ceremony was about to begin, and Renji was nowhere to be found. Nobody had seen him at all the day, and his friends were beginning to worry.
Then, at the last minute, he arrived. He approached the group calmly, seemingly oblivious to the stares that followed him.
His second promise to Ichigo, he had outdone himself on. He had forsaken his usual black robes for a vibrantly pink tuxedo, where he'd found it, no one asked. Even his shoes were pink, and he had, perched jauntily on his head, a pink felt top hat.
It was Rukia who broke the silence that had fallen over the crowd first. "What the hell are you…" but she was unable to finish as an uncontrollable fit of giggles over took her, causing his to double over.
For a long minute everybody else looked from her, to Renji, and back again. Then, like a wave, they all began to laugh.
Anybody who knew Renji would have expected him to burst out yelling and try to beat anybody within range to a pulp out of embarrassment, but he didn't. It took nearly half an hour for everyone to calm down enough for the ceremony to commence, and even then every now and again the giggles would resurface.
But Renji just stood there, his head held high in his ridiculous outfit, a tiny, knowing smile on his lips.
"You had better love me for this, Ichigo," he whispered. And maybe he just imagined it, but he could have sworn he heard an echo of his love's laughter float by on the wind.