Disclaimer- I don't own Bleach
Short one-shot, told in the POV of Hinamori. Please read and review.
Pain the likes of which I've never felt before spreads from my chest, where a sword is now sheathed, and the pain is not merely physical. The worst part, far more difficult to bare than mere physical discomfort, is the emotional trauma. I can't believe this is happening.
Tears fall from my eyes and slide down my cheeks as I gaze up into the face of Captain Aizen, the one who's holding the sword that's currently piercing my flesh. The joy from a few minutes ago, the joy I felt upon discovering that my idol was still alive, is now replaced with heartache and disbelief.
Why Captain Aizen? Why have you done this? Was I not a good vice-captain? I always tried so hard to please you. Was there something, anything, I could have done to prevent this?
The pain intensifies tenfold as the blade of the sword is ripped from my body and I find myself no longer able to stand. I fall to the ground, barely noticing the pain from the force of impact as my body hits the floor. My heart is breaking and I welcome the cold grip of death.
My beloved Captain Aizen, whom I have strived to please since joining the Thirteen Court Guard Squads, stabbed me without even the slightest show of emotion. Am I really that worthless?
Vaguely I hear the sound of his footsteps, as well as those of Captain Ichimaru. They are leaving me here to die, alone in this place. Unable to stand, unable to even move, all I can do is lie here and wait for death. So much pain but I know it can't last forever. I feel the blood pooling around my arms and I know that death will claim me soon. Then I'll be free of this pain. Free from the burning pain in my chest and free from the ache in my heart.
"Aizen? What does this mean? Are you really Aizen?"
That voice. It's Toushirou.
"Of course. As you can see I'm the real thing."
His voice sounds so cold. That's not the Captain Aizen I know. What could have happened to make him this way? There has to be an explanation, I know there does. Something is forcing my captain to act in a way that he would normally never act. That's it. This isn't his fault.
"Captain Hitsugaya has returned a lot quicker than expected."
"I'm sorry." Captain Ichimaru, his voice also devoid of emotion. "Izuru was supposed to keep him occupied but it would seem that he failed."
Izuru? Izuru was involved in this as well? Is no one as they seemed?
"What are you talking about?"
Toushirou's getting angry, I can tell by the slight edge in his voice. I want to warn him, to tell him to get away, but I can't move.
"We're discussing battle strategies. The first rule of war is to divide your enemies and decrease their numbers."
War? Enemies? Please tell me I'm dreaming this, that I'm not listening to my beloved Captain talking about war with my best friend.
Toushirou is just as confused as I am, I can hear it in his voice.
"Where is Hinamori?"
Toushirou came looking for me? But why? I don't deserve that from him, not after what I did to him. I tried to kill my best friend with my own hands and yet he still came searching for me. That makes no sense. By all rights he should hate me.
"Well now, I wonder where. . ."
I feel the wind produced by a flash-step ruffle my hair and I know, even though I don't have the strength to open my eyes, that Toushirou is standing over me.
"Hina. . .Mori."
The pain in his voice tears at my already breaking heart. Even after everything I did to him he still cares for me. It doesn't make any sense Shirou-chan. Why do you still care?
"Too bad, you found her." Such a cold, emotionless tone from the captain who had always been so kind to me.
"Aizen, Ichimaru since when did you team up? Was it before you faked your death?"
"Of course. It was from the start. Since I became a captain I've never thought of anyone else as my vice-captain."
Hearing this causes a fresh wave of pain to wash over me. Captain Aizen never thought of me as his vice-captain? This can't be true, it just can't. please let this all just be some kind of nightmare. I'd be crying right now if I had any more tears to spill but they're all gone, already cried for the captain I'd thought lost.
"So up until now, you were deceiving us?" Anger in the voice of my best friend, the boy I grew up with. An anger bordering on rage.
"I had no plans of deceiving anyone. It's just no one understood the real me."
The real Captain Aizen? There's no way this cold, uncaring man is the real Captain Aizen. There has to be an explanation for why he's acting like this. It's not really who he is, it can't be. None of this is true.
"Don't understand? Hinamori admired you, joined the Thirteen Court Guard Squads just to be near you. Then she worked insanely hard, finally becoming a vice-captain like she wanted. All to please you."
"I know. There is nothing in the world easier to manipulate than a person who admires you."
I'm close to wishing at this point that the cold would envelope me. Hearing these cold, uncaring words spoken in the voice of the man I've idolized for so long is sheer torture. I just want it to end.
I hear the sound of Toushirou unsheathing his sword and feel a sudden rush of freezing air. He intends to fight. No Shirou-chan, please just run away. There's no way you can defeat Captain Aizen, you'll just get hurt. I'm not worth it. Get out of here while you've still got a chance.
I try desperately to speak, to tell him to run away, but my voice is gone. I don't even have the strength left to moan in pain. I'm completely powerless to stop the fight and yet I'm going to be forced to hear it.
"Bankai, Daiguren Hyourinmaru!"
I can hear the anger in Toushirou's voice as he unleashes his Bankai but this battle is already lost. There's no way he can beat Captain Aizen, there's just no way.
I hear the sound of more footsteps but I have no idea who else has joined us, don't know if they're friend or foe.
"Aizen, I will kill you."
Toushirou's voice is filled with determination. This is all my fault. Please Shirou-chan you have to get away from here.
"Don't use such strong words. You'll be seen as weak."
Toushirou screams in rage and the cold air that fills the room begins to circulate wildly. He's launched an attack, the battle has begun. However I know, without the shadow of a doubt, that this battle will be short lived. Toushirou is skilled, a prodigy, however he is no match for Captain Aizen who has much more battle experience.
I hear a gasp of surprise from my childhood friend, accompanied by a cold laugh from Captain Aizen, and I know that something bad has happened. The sound of shattering ice follows and then the dull thud of a small body hitting the ground.
The voice inside my head is screaming, he can't be dead. Please make this horrible nightmare go away. Let me wake up, let Captain Aizen be alive and normal and let Toushirou be alright. Please.
Other people are speaking now although I can't tell who they are or what they're saying. All I can think of is Toushirou, lying somewhere in this room injured and possibly dead. It's my fault. All of this is my fault, I know that and yet there's nothing I can do about it. There's no way to fix any of it.
I'm sorry Shirou-chan. I'm really sorry.
The physical pain is beginning to lessen now, however my heart is still aching. Vaguely I hear more footsteps and then I feel someone gently touching my shoulder.
"It's alright vice-captain Hinamori." It's Captain Unohana from Squad Four. "You and Captain Hitsugaya are going to be alright."
Her words bring a measure of comfort to my breaking heart. Shirou-chan's alive, Captain Aizen didn't kill him. Captain Unohana will take care of him, he'll pull through. Now I can die in peace, without the burden of guilt. Knowing that I'm not responsible for his death.
I'm sorry I got you involved in this Shirou-chan but you'll be okay now that Captain Unohana is here. She'll take good care of you.
As the cold wraps around me my mind travels back to a happier time, back before I became a Shinigami. Back when Shirou-chan and I had spent our days playing together in the warm sunshine. Those were the happiest days of my life although I didn't know it at the time and I wish I could go back.
With this happy memory in my mind I welcome death.
Death is the only thing left for me now that my own captain, my beloved Captain Aizen, has betrayed me.