Disclaimer: Guess what? I don't own Bleach or Naruto!
A/N: Eh, I'm sure alot of older readers are like: WTF?! A chapter?!
Well, the reason I decided to pick this story back up is because someone said: How can I expect people to read my stories when I'm known as the guy who writes a couple chapters and then quits.
At first, my reaction was: Psh!
But then I kinda thought about it, and realized they were right. And besides, I dont wanna be one of those writers who drops their stories. I wanna be one of those who continue to write, although they only update every blue moon.
Once again, this chapter is short, and I hope that doesn't effect the quality of it.
Naruto sat on a nearby rooftop; his legs dangling over the edge as he watched the battle with Ichigo and the low level hollow progress.
He had to admit, he was rather impressed with the boys fighting potential. According to his sources, he had been a shinigami for less than two weeks, yet already he showed natural talent with a sword.
His energy capacity was enormous, easily fukutaichou level, though his control was pathetic. But, he had never trained it a day in his life, so it was only to be expected.
Since he didn't train however, that raised the question: where did he get all of his power?
From Rukia? That was impossible. She only had the strength of a fourth seat.
Was it because his father was once a captain class shinigami that he inherited such great potential?
Naruto didn't know.
Sure, he himself had been born with a high chakra capacity, but most of that came from the fusing of the Kyuubi with his soul. Other than that, he had to work hard for everything he now had.
Yet this Ichigo, his power seemed to grow at unnatural rates in unnatural amounts of time. In two weeks of being a shinigami, he could already best shinigami who had trained years. With a bit of training… he could become one of the strongest shinigami ever known.
'I think I see it now…' Naruto thought, watching Ichigo carefully. 'So that's what you want.'
Suddenly, the hollow charged, and Ichigo hesitated, the hollow landing a brutal strike across the substitute shinigami chest, blood spraying from the wound. The boy fell to his knees, his eyes staring blankly ahead before he collapsed.
Naruto tsked. Well that was rather… disappointing.
The hollow advanced on the down shinigami, no doubt ready to devour its meal.
"Oh ruler, mask of flesh and blood, all creations of the universe, fluttering of the wings, ye who bears the name of man! Scorching heat and disorder; evolve the transposition of the southern sea barrier. Hadou 31: Shakkahou (Red Flame Gun)!"
A medium sized fireball shot at the hollow, striking it between the eyes and enveloping the area in dust. When the wind blew, clearing the smoke from the area, it revealed that Rukia had disappeared, managing to grab both Ichigo's spirit and body during the commotion.
Naruto grinned. 'Ooh, smart girl.'
The hollow was still standing there, howling in utter fury and pain, a large crack on its mask. Naruto sighed; the hollow was too busy clawing at its own face in agony to be of any more use, besides, it had served its purpose.
He stood slowly, patting himself down before straightening with a stretch.
The gigai he was using was specially designed to allow his soul to be freed from his gigai with a mere thought, useful in situations where he couldn't spare even a second to remove himself from his gigai using any other means.
That was how Naruto found himself breaking free from his gigai, the shell without a soul simply crumbling to the ground. His blond hair was once again streaked with red and black, his eyes were once again violet, and he wore his white pants and vest, his sword strapped to his back.
He took a single step forward and blurred from existence, faster than any trained eye could hope to follow, he was in front of the hollow, his sword already in his hands and whistling through the air. His sword pierced through the hollow's mask, the beast not even having a chance to scream before it glowed bright white and dissolved in a shower of spiritual energy.
Landing on the ground with a tap, Naruto sheathed his sword and looked around, not seeing Rukia in the immediate area. There was no way that she would run, seeing as how it was her job to defeat the hollow and all. She must have been hiding somewhere nearby.
He sensed a great reiatsu nearby that was draining fast, most definitely Ichigo's, and next to it, he sensed a suppressed reiatsu that was definitely Rukia's.
He had completed what he had sought out to do, but opportunity presented itself. Maybe he could speed up his mission by a couple weeks…?
Without even lifting a finger, his hollow mask began to form on his face. A red tinge began to distort the air around him. A strong feeling of malice blanketed the area. Behind his mask, Naruto's eyes flashed red.
It was show time.
After Rukia had fired off the Hadou using what had gathered of her spiritual powers, she had used the smoke as a distraction to grab Ichigo and his body with enough time to spare to flee behind a nearby fence before the smoke cleared.
Rukia heaved in exhaustion, glaring at the two unconscious Ichigo's. If they survived this, she would have to buy some mod souls. Ichigo was heavy and she would rather not be lugging around all that extra weight in her weak human gigai.
Ichigo moaned pitifully besides her, drawing her immediately attention back to him. Now that they were out of immediate harms way (for the moment) she began inspecting his wound, grimacing when she realized she would be unable to heal it without her spiritual powers.
Once again, she cursed the weak gigai she was confined inside and Ichigo for taking all of her powers. If she had still been a normal shinigami, she could have ended the hollows pitiful life in one swipe and then healed Ichigo in another.
Suddenly, the hollow's spiritual signature simply… disappeared. One second it was gone, the next… nothing.
Before Rukia could even look over the wooden fence to investigate, a terrible presence filled the air, sucking the air right from her lungs and forcing her to the ground. Her eyes were wide and her hands trembled as the fearsome reiatsu pressed down on her, powerful, angry, and evil.
She had never felt anything like it…! Except, once, when she was a young girl…
But it couldn't be! There had not been rumors of vizard activity in years, in fact, ever since the terrible incident itself!
But the fear she felt was real.
The power that hung in the air, suffocating her, was real.
And the dark deep voice, laced with power that spoke quietly into her ear, was definitely real.
Rukia screamed, the shock overriding the paralyzing killing intent long enough for her to scramble away and turn toward the source of all the chaos.
A fox-masked person stared back at her, their blood red eyes dancing with feral amusement. There was no doubt about it. The person before her was a vizard! Unbidden, a memory of her nii-san rose to the forefront of her mind.
They were sitting down for their usual tea, a few days after the 'incident' as it was referred to by those not involved. Rukia had not seen her nii-san in days, the incident having required the attention of all captains of the Gotei 13.
Her brother was behaving rather… peculiar today. His tea had long since gone cold and he was staring at the floor mat distantly, his hands folded under his nose.
"O-nii-sama?" she asked hesitantly.
He looked up, as if noticing her for the first time. "Yes, what is it Rukia?"
"You've been rather distantly lately… Does it -- Does it have anything to do with the 'incident' everyone is speaking of?"
As soon as the question left her lips, she looked away. She and her brother didn't have the… closest of relationships, and more often then not, whenever she questioned him to the doings of the Gotei 13, he would always tell her it was none of her concern.
He didn't reply right away,
"F-Forgive me," she apologized, bowing her head. "It's just that--"
"It is okay Rukia," Byakuya Kuchiki said, interrupting her. "You are only concerned of your brother's wellbeing… But in regards to your question, the answer is yes. The reason I have been so… withdrawn as of late does indeed have to do with the 'incident' as you call it."
Rukia was gaping like a fish, but she didn't care. That was the most her brother had said to her all week. Hell, probably even all month!
Deciding to press her luck, Rukia asked quietly, "Wh-What happened?"
Byakuya sighed and lifted his teacup, finally taking a sip. He grimaced however, when the cold liquid went down his throat and he set it down immediately. "I'm afraid I can not say." Before Rukia could sigh in disappointment, he continued, "But I can say, that it was one of the few incidents that I have ever been genuinely afraid in my life."
Rukia stared. There was no way! Her brother? Scared?
"Rukia," Byakuya stated, locking eyes with her. They were serious. Far more serious than they had ever been when directed at her. "I want you to promise me something. Promise me that if you are ever to feel a presence like the one today that you will run."
Seeing that for once, her brother looks truly vulnerable, truly scared for her wellbeing, Rukia nodded.
But it looked like now -- with the vizard's red-eyed stare pinning her to her spot -- it was one promise that she could not keep.
When Naruto had frightened Rukia, it had all been in good fun -- at least, to him. But now that she was staring at him, wide-eyed and trembling, it was beginning to bring back rather painful memories.
Behind his mask, he frowned.
He took a step toward her, and she recoiled. A sharp pain went through Naruto's heart, making him hesitate.
Right behind Kuchiki Rukia was none other than Ichigo Kurosaki, a gaping wound on his chest bleeding porously.
Another step forward and Rukia flinched again, scrambling back only to trip over Ichigo. She looked at the unconscious shinigami then back to Naruto, panic clearly evident in her eyes.
He drew his sword slowly, and Rukia whimpered.
Naruto couldn't let his emotions get in the way. He had a mission to perform!
But… she looked so scared, huddled in front of Ichigo, her big violet eyes wide and filled with tears.
Kurosaki Ichigo was right in front of him... This was his chance, why was he hesitating? Didn't he want to be a ninja when he was alive? Well, this was no different; he was simply following his orders… no matter what they told him to do.
But then, involuntarily, his eyes traveld once again to Rukia and his resolve weakened. She was looking at him the same way another girl had looked at him along time ago…. Someone who was very close to him….
A sharp pain shot through Naruto's skull, like a knife being driven into his brain. He bit back a cry of pain. The feeling was encompassing his entire mind, blinding him with the white hot intensity of it.
Suddenly, a cool feeling began to cover the pain, a soft voice whispering in his ear. They spoke too low for him to understand but it calmed him immediately.
As soon as it started, it was gone, leaving Naruto dazed and confused.
His sword still drawn, Naruto stepped forward, placing his sword right over Ichigo's wound.
"No!" Rukia screamed, tears flowing freely down her face, yet making no move to stop him.
His sword began to glow a soft green, and slowly, Ichigo's wound began to heal. Rukia watched on, her eyes wide with shock.
When the wound was healed, Naruto sheathed his sword once more and said gruffly, "He'll live."
Without sparing the downed shinigami a glance, he used shunpo to arrive back at the rooftop where he had deposited his gigai.
Standing there was a blond-haired man with a bucket hat shadowing his eyes. The man took a step forward, his sandals clopping against the cement below. He placed a large hand on Naruto's shoulder. "I'm proud of you Naruto; you didn't go through with it."
Naruto stared at the man for a second before he shrugged the hand off of him. He placed himself back into his gigai, his features once more becoming that of his old self and stood.
"Don't be. The time just wasn't right, but next time…." Naruto let his voice drift off. Then, without warning, he jumped from the building, landing perfectly on his feet and began walking away.
Up on the rooftop, Kisuke Urahara watched the younger blond walk away with a smile.
The next day, both Ichigo and Rukia were at school, acting the way they usually did. Ichigo was scowling furiously at everyone and Rukia was acting the part of the preppy school girl. That was, until Naruto walked into the room.
They quieted down immediately, sending him wary glances over their shoulder when he took his seat.
He smiled obliviously, hoping to appease whatever suspicions they had of him by looking harmless. They turned away, instead opting to whisper quietly among themselves. He heard his name mentioned and curiosity peaked, he decided to listen in.
"I don't know, Rukia," Ichigo was saying, a frown on his face. "I mean… I know I had my doubts, but I wouldn't go that far!"
Rukia glared. "What happened to, 'hey, doesn't he feel weird? Like a hollow?'" She tried to speak in a deep voice, mimicking Ichigo's scowl.
"I so don't look like that," Ichigo growled, scowling. "Besides, have you seen the guy? He's an idiot!"
"Hey!" Naruto cried before he could stop himself, drawing the attention of everyone to himself, including Ichigo's and Rukia's.
The teacher had stopped writing on the board and was looking at him in confusion. "What was that, Uzumaki?"
Naruto found himself on the spot. Without stopping to think, he said the first thing that popped into his brain. "I said… Hooray! A pop quiz!" Everyone continued to look at him weirdly. "I… love quizzes?"
The teacher smirked, turning back to the board with a mutter of "what a weird kid." The rest of the students followed suit, finally directing their attention away from him.
Instead of returning to silence however, everyone began to talk amongst themselves about Naruto's outburst, drowning out whatever Rukia and Ichigo were talking about. He winced, his ears twitching in annoyance as the sounds continued to bounce around in the enclosed room.
He heard bits and pieces of the two shinigami's conversation, but not enough to tell what they were saying about him.
He sighed, laying his head against the cool desk and resisting the urge to cover his ears as the sounds of high school continued to assault him.
His thoughts drifted to the incident yesterday with Ichigo and Rukia, him mind replaying the events again and again, the most prominent memory being Rukia's look.
Had he tried to execute his plan too soon? The obvious answer to that question was a big yes. He had only been in the school for a day! But he always was impatient type and didn't like waiting for anything.
The two shinigami would be suspicious of him now. They were already wary and he was sure that they would be watching him closely from now on.
'It doesn't matter,' Naruto thought. 'When the time comes, I will execute my plan and watch the dominoes fall.'
The bell signaling the end of call rang shrilly.
'But first, I seriously need to consider getting some earplugs.'