Fanfict Title: Heart's Desire

Genre: Romance, AU

Characters/Pairings: IchiRuki, IshiHime, Byakuya, etc.

Rating: T

Disclaimer: Me no own Bleach!

Warning: As this is an AU story, many of the situations are changed to fit my idea. I'll try to make the characters as in character as I can possibly do. All of the captains are here (that means Aizen, Gin, and Tousen) but I added a division (thus Gotei 14 instead of 13) and the vaizards, quincy, and everyone else. The setting is in Seiretei and no one is living in Karakura. The timeframe is somewhat feudal, so no technology stuff except for what the 12th division uses.

Summary: In the middle of the war against the Arrancar in Hueco Mundo, Kurosaki Ichigo laid siege to the district of the noblest of all nobles. The mission: to capture and take as hostage the sister of his enemy, Kuchiki Rukia. The problem: the hostage herself.

Chapter 1

They have been laying siege at the Kuchiki palace for ten days now.

Kurosaki Ichigo, Taicho of the 14th division had to grudgingly admit that whichever seated personnel left in the district were competent enough to have held out this long. In truth, he felt a bit relieved that his endeavor did not end as easily as he expected. Knowing that Kuchiki Byakuya, Taicho of the 6th division and his fukutaicho, Abarai Renji was out busy fighting the Arrancar, made him find this whole siege boring. It was not at all fun to attack unarmed and defenseless people.

Unfortunately, the siege lasted longer than what he initially wanted and it was now making him impatient and angry. Ishida, his fukutaicho, was still missing after he and his 6th seat, Keigo went ahead ten days ago to spy within the Kuchiki's district.

Already a taicho at the age of 20, Kurosaki Ichigo really was a force to be reckoned with. His father was once the Taicho of his division and it was from him that Ichigo learned everything in combat. He stood imposingly, a scowl present on his face as he contemplated his next move. Whoever it was that was leading the remaining troops of the 6th division was a smart and strong shinigami. Every time his men advanced, they were pushed back with tactics that were far from simple. Ichigo was even suspicious that it was Byakuya who was rallying and giving orders, but as he was still busy with the Arrancar at Hueco Mundo, he knew that it was not the case.

Ichigo stood with his back straight, his lean frame a contradiction to his raw strength and power. Angrily, he ran a hand through his orange-colored hair. He was seriously conflicted on what he'll do to that officer who had been thwarting his plans: either to kill him painfully in anger or convince him to switch sides and be his ally.

"Kurosaki Taicho!" a soldier called out.


The shinigami cleared his throat. "Taicho, the younger brother of Kuchiki Taicho is here and is requesting to talk with you."

Ichigo just looked at him in disbelief.

Mizuiro, his 5th seat shrugged, "It's a common course of action for a Kuchiki, Ichigo." He said simply. "You know that they value diplomacy until the very last minute.

"A boy?" scoffed Tatsuki, the division's only high-ranking female member. "A boy would risk his neck just to get here? And I didn't know he had a younger brother too."

"Keigo and his information gaps." Mizuiro said in disgust.

"We don't hurt women, children, and the elderly, Tatsuki." Sado said. Ichigo's third seat was generally a quiet and peace-loving giant who had nerves and a body as strong as steel. "But that was quite reckless of him."

Ichigo frowned. "Let the brat in."

The shinigami who brought in the news bowed before going outside to call the child in.

Ichigo had to restrain his amusement, while his officers snickered at amusement. The lad was certainly a short one, barely reaching his chest. He was scrawny and looked extremely ridiculous wearing an expensive and large haori that was obviously his brother's underneath a blue hakama and gi. On the child's head was a large straw hat and he carried a large broadsword in one hand. Shaking, he clumsily stuck the sword on the ground as a show of his peaceful intentions.

Despite the comical display, the boy showed a calm exterior and coolness in his posture. Considering that he looked about 11 or so, it was a feat that is worthy of respect. In the back of his mind, Ichigo wondered if all Kuchiki children were taught to act like adults before they could walk.

"I will not remove my hat." The boy said quietly, as if his throat was hoarse and it was paining him to speak. Not quite similar with the cold yet dulcet tones of his older sibling.

"So be it." Ichigo said, amused at the show of bravado and pride. "Speak as to why you boldly venture to my camp?"

"I ask you to cease this siege, Kurosaki Taicho." The child said simply. "Our people are weak and hungry as yours are. Truth be told, we still have shinigami capable of fighting, but we cannot risk the innocent to starve anymore." The boy raised his head and Ichigo could see a swath of black-colored hair – bangs actually, that reached the child's small and pert nose; small lips deliberately set thinly; and something that looked like a stubbornly set chin. Everything else about his face was obscured.

By the looks of it, this child could be younger than 11 or he had been extremely pampered to have such an innocent, delicate, and almost feminine air about him. Neither did Ichigo miss the weak resemblance the boy had to his famed brother who was claimed by the women to have a face that was carved by the angels themselves.

"What makes you think I will cease the siege?" He asked the boy. "What is your name?"

"Kuchiki Touya, Kurosaki Taicho." The boy replied. "Please sir, my brother is not here and whatever it is that you want cannot be here because all of our prized possessions have been hidden by Nii-sama – secretly hidden somewhere prior to his leave. Our fields and livestock has been razed, you will not get anything from them."

Ichigo looked levelly at the boy, impressed at his logic and courage. "I have something to settle with your brother and his friend – Aizen Souske. Tell me Touya, where is your sister, Rukia?"

"Rukia?" the boy's jaw dropped open, "Kurosaki Taicho, she is not here! She left eight days ago to head to Aizen Taicho's district."

"Eight days ago?"

"Yes, Kurosaki Taicho. Her wedding will be held next month and it was suggested by Nii-sama that they should meet again. She was supposed to return next week…"

"Shit!" Cursed Ichigo. How did that happen when they were guarding all the passes and had the castle surrounded? Was there something that they missed? How the hell did Kuchiki Rukia escape if not for a secret passage then?

"Oi, are you telling the truth?" Tatsuki asked, stepping closer to the child. "If you're lying, Touya –

"I swear that she is not in the palace anymore, ma'am!" Touya said earnestly. "If you ask anyone, they'll tell you that Rukia is already outside the walls of Nii-sama's division as well. I solemnly swear on the grave of my saintly wife!"

"Oi, aren't you too young to be married?" Tatsuki growled.

The boy shrugged "But that's what all the men say when they swear."

Tatsuki had the urge to laugh, bust she just glared at the boy before giving him an impish smile. This kid had spunk; she had to give him that.

Mizuiro shook his head. "Damn it, how could Keigo have missed the info! We're wasting our time here if Kuchiki Rukia is already with Aizen."

Ichigo frowned. This was bad; they had been anticipating Kuchiki Rukia to be in the palace, which was why they were here in the first place. Without Byakuya's sister, there would be no leverage for Ichigo anymore. Everything he planned for came to naught. All he did was wasting innocent lives – needlessly.

"Kurosaki Taicho?" Touya's voice broke his thoughts, "Will you cease this siege?"

The plaintive tone of the boy made Ichigo looked back. God, why did he have to deal with younger siblings? He already had been eating out of the hands of his younger sisters; and now, this brat was using The Tone with him.

"Fine." He said dismissively. "We will withdraw. You may go now, Kuchiki Touya; I certainly hope to meet you in battle when you are older." It was a weird way of showing compliment, but Ichigo wanted to get the point across. This Kuchiki may prove to be more interesting and more worthy of his respect than the emotionless bastard that was Byakuya and his ice queen sister, Rukia.

Touya smiled slightly, once again feeding the idea that he was the Kuchiki challenging. Ichigo was only able to meet Byakuya, but it was rumored that all the Kuchiki's took their ranks and prides seriously, never showing emotions and always looking down at those who didn't belong to a noble lineage. This one was bold, emblazoned with zeal, and was thinking of the people instead of winning a pointless battle. Thus, Ichigo decided to ensure the survival of this child. He just might be the future of the Kuchiki clan.

With obvious difficulty, Touya attempted to remove the sword from the earth. It took him a few clumsy efforts before Sado pitied him and took out the sword himself.


"Thank you, sir!" Touya chirped before he staggered outside.

"Well, that was informative." Mizuiro said as soon as the boy was out of earshot.

Tatsuki growled. "That idiot Keigo! Seriously, how stupid could he be?"

"I'm worried." Sado interrupted; "Ishida is with him, he would not allow such slip ups to happen. If it did, something went wrong."

Ichigo growled, slapping the table with both hands. "All the planning we did went to waste! Damn!"

"What about Ishida and Keigo?" Tatsuki asked. "Ichigo, you should have asked Touya to bring them out. Maybe you can send word when you call out a truce?"

"Fine." Ichigo said dryly. "If you ask me, I'd like Keigo to return safely, so I can draw and quarter him myself."

The others laughed. They didn't pity Keigo really, but if Ichigo gets his hands on him, he was so dead yesterday.

The siege was bloody, and no one really wanted it to happen in the first place. Not when most of the divisions in Seiretei were busy with the war against the Arrancars. Ichigo was now contemplating a plan on how to get to the elusive Kuchiki Rukia, the ice princess. He needed her alive for his plans to get to Aizen. Without her, he would be unable to extract retribution from the damned Taicho of the 5th division, not when everyone in Seiretei holds him in high regard.

The damn two-faced bastard will get it – even if that's the last thing he would do.

"Kurosaki Taicho!" a shinigami cried out as he dashed to the tent. "Permission to enter, Taicho!"

"What is it now?" Ichigo all but snapped.

"Taicho, Ishida fukutaicho and 6th seat, Asano-san are here sir… and with a… guest."

"What the hell is this, a tea party?" Ichigo thundered.

"Please don't shout, Kurosaki, its very unbecoming of a Taicho." Drawled Ishida, albeit tiredly, as he entered the tent. He looked a bit pale and muddy but he didn't seem to be injured too much. Behind him came a woman who was dressed in once clean and beautiful clothing that was now streaked with mud and dried blood. She had long auburn hair that were mussed and tangled hopelessly and wide, grey eyes that were suddenly fixed on the ground.

Judging at the possessive way Ishida seemed to be standing in front of her, as if protecting her, Ichigo didn't think it was polite to remark that she had an impressive pair of… errr, she had a graceful neck.

"Ishida!" The others called out.

"Don't sound like you all expected me to die." Ishida snapped. "I almost did, if not for lady Inoue here who found me and treated my wounds."

Ichigo looked at the trembling woman before looking back at Ishida. "Like you'd die easily."

Ishida allowed himself to give the barest of smiles. "Guess who got me into trouble?" he asked, as Keigo sheepishly showed himself in.

"It was really an accident, Ichigo!"

There was a sound of disbelieving anger from Ishida. "Setting our camp in the woods on fire is not an accident, Keigo."

Tatsuki noticed the girl swaying on her feet. God knows how tired she could be. This woman saved her friend's life and for that, Tasuki was willing to help her in any way she could. "You should take a seat." She told the girl kindly as she assisted her to a sofa.

"Are you hungry or thirsty? We'll send something for you." She sent Ishida an assuring glance that was reciprocated by the other with a nod.

As the others all sat down, Ishida faced his Taicho. "Kurosaki, it was my fault we were unable to warn you, I was indisposed."

"Never mind, Ishida. I just didn't think you were that easy to take out."

Ishida gave Ichigo a steady glare. "I can't believe that Byakuya's sister was that good with tactics, I wish I got word to you sooner."

Now that got Ichigo's attention. "Excuse me? Byakuya's sister held the fort?"

Keigo nodded. "Every order was from her, Ichigo. Every whispered action was from the lips of the unattainable and divine Kuchiki Rukia herself…"

Ishida held up a hand to silence Keigo. "Do not upset Lady Inoue!" he hissed. "Ichigo," he said to his Taicho, "Lady Inoue Orihime and Lady Kuchiki Rukia are good friends, she acted out of compassion and I wish that you will not pressure her with information regarding her friend."

"Ichigo already knows a lot about Lady Kuchiki," Keigo said, interrupting the bespectacled fukutaicho. "She's dainty, with hair as dark as night, with complexion as fair and unblemished as the first snow –

"And that she's already with Aizen." Mizuiro said dryly.

There was a gasp from Inoue Orihime. "N-n-no. It can't be." Suddenly, she stopped and covered her mouth with her hand. "I'm sorry." She mumbled.

"Finish what you were saying, Inoue." Ichigo ordered sternly, causing the girl to quake in fear.

"For goodness' sake, Ichigo," Tatsuki said in exasperation, "This is not the inquisition."

Inoue took a big gulp before looking at Ishida, who nodded to reassure her. "She couldn't be with Aizen Taicho, Kurosaki Taicho. She doesn't even want to marry him in the first place!"

Tatsuki took a step back. "But Kuchiki Touya said she was with Aizen."

"Touya?" Inoue asked, confused "Kuchiki Touya?"

"Kuchiki Touya, Byakuya and Rukia Kuchiki's younger brother." Ichigo said impatiently.

"But he can't have told you that!" a confused Inoue said quickly. "That's just impossible!"

At the disbelieving looks in their faces, Inoue shook her head, "Kuchiki Touya is a dog! He's the pet of Rukia since she was a little girl… he died last month…"

"Her brother was here, lady Inoue." Sado said, "He introduced himself to us."

Keigo shook his head. "Byakuya has no other sibling than Kuchiki Rukia!"

Ishida looked at the other man "Then who…"

Suddenly Ichigo sprang from his seat. "The fuck! Get out of my way!"

"Ichigo!" Tatsuki called out to her friend as Taicho dashed out of the tent. "What's wrong with him?"

Piecing the fragmented information together, Ishida turned even paler. "Oh shit, it was Kuchiki Rukia that was here!"

Deciding to forgo his horse, Ichigo opted to go on foot – via shunpo. True, his steed was a fast one, but desperate times call for desperate measures to get to Kuchiki Rukia on time. She had played him for a fool! While he had been busy being impressed with Byakuya's little brother, he had the woman he was looking for in his grasp and he let her go!

Thinking back, Ichigo realized that her speech and manner had been manipulated in order to deceive, that the clothing she wore was also part of the façade. If Ishida was to be believed that Kuchiki Rukia was a master tactician and clever opponent, the woman would not head off to her home where she would risk capture. And she was probably in a different disguise or nothing at all. Thus, he took to the direction opposite to Byakuya's division, hoping that he was right in his decision.

Kuchiki Rukia better pray that she could outrun him, because he was definitely going to make her pay.

That didn't stop him from admitting that the woman was smart.

It was the longest and hardest ride she had ever done in her entire life. There had been no time for her to gloat at her success, to say goodbye to her faithful servants, and to give last-minute orders to the remaining shinigami. She hoped that they would follow her written instructions to the letter; that would buy them time against Kurosaki Taicho until she reached the 13th division to get reinforcements.

Kuchiki Ruki knew that her Nii-sama's friend and her mentor, Ukitake Taicho would help her, even if it were only to placate the orange haired taicho who was holding her home in a tight grasp. Her horse was fast, but she would not take any chances by stopping to change into a different disguise for fear that she would be caught. In a hurry, she hid the haori and hat among the bushes and donned on a black cloak over her clothing. Despite the fact that it would be evening soon and her clothing would cover her from view, her mare was the color of pure white – it would be seen easily.

She would be damned before she left her mount behind.

Dear god, she hoped that the rumors were false and that Kurosaki Ichigo's shunpo was not really as swift as the wind.

Suddenly, Rukia felt the mare become uneasy as they rode across the countryside. It only meant one thing: someone was behind them. With tensed muscles, she urged the horse to go faster.

There was a blur to her left and her stomach sank in dismay as she realized that the rider already passed her. She was in trouble.

Her path was blocked and Rukia had no choice but to halt her horse and make her mare slowly take a couple of steps back. Unconsciously, her right hand left the reigns to touch the hilt of her sword. The feel of it reassured her. Whatever would happen, she will not go down as a victim. With that, she felt courageous enough to meet the intruder's stare.

The first thing she saw was the god-awful color of orange.

Kurosaki Ichigo. Taicho of the 14th squad. The second-youngest captain in the history of Seiretiei.

Slowly, Kurosaki Ichigo made his way towards her. Rukia got a good look of him this time. He was tall and lean, yet he commanded a certain presence that radiated of power and strength. He wasn't bronzed and looked like a barbarian like her Nii-sama's fukutaicho, Abarai Renji; nor was he fair and regal-looking like Byakuya. Yet there was something about him that was making Rukia's gut feels like it housed a village of hell butterflies. Kurosaki Ichigo had impressive features, of course, strong and masculine angles with a scowl that was menacing as hell. Slowly, he came nearer, making her looked at his eyes which were the color of warm amber; but at the moment, there was a blaze of fury that was lighting them. "Kuchiki Rukia. We have your friend, Inoue Orihime."

At those words, Rukia felt like weeping. Her best friend was in his hands, and it will be a choice between Orihime's freedom or hers.

"Really?" she asked. "What proof do you have?"

Ichigo was surprised to hear Kuchiki Rukia's voice. It was not like any he had encountered before and completely different than the one she employed when she masqueraded as a young boy. There was nothing fragile or girlish about it. This was not the voice of a pampered lady who knew nothing but parties and intrigue. It was of a woman who was learned and had control. It was a melodious alto, evenly toned, and had a trace of huskiness that could bring a man to their knees.

This was Kuchiki Rukia, the ice princess of Seiretei. This is the woman who was considered to be the ultimate prize for any man. Despite not attending social functions, Ichigo was aware of this woman's reputation. One who had bloodlines so pure and a dowry so lavish to tempt just about any man. Of course, the rumor of her spurning more than a hundred suitors from nobles and ranked shinigami otherwise, before being betrothed to Aizen taicho, already kept the gossip mill churning.

The rumors regarding her looks were not exaggerated as well. Kuchiki Rukia was an ice princess for all purposes. She indeed had the complexion that was as pure and as fair as fresh snow, and her dark hair as black as midnight was partially hidden by the hood of her cloak. Her brows were winged and elegant. Her nose was indeed small and her chin had a stubborn edge to it. The lips that he once thought of as thin were in fact, generous and tinged with light red. But it was her eyes that proved to be her most interesting feature. They were a rare color between indigo and violet – large and mysterious, hidden by thick lashes.

Mentally, Ichigo shook his head. "Inoue Orihime. Taller than you, auburn hair. Grey eyes, big… err, nice neck. Did I forget clumsy and shy as hell?"

Whatever reaction Rukia had, she hid it well. "I'm afraid I do not recognize that girl which you described, Kurosaki Taichio." Rukia shrugged elegantly, as if addressing a peasant. "Stand aside and let me pass."

"Oh, so you're to leave your best friend all alone in your enemy's camp?"

The hidden meaning hung in the air but Rukia just raised an elegant eyebrow. "I'm afraid you got the wrong person, Kurosaki Taicho. Inoue Orihime is a resourceful woman who can take care of herself. She would never be caught by the likes of you."

"I never said I caught her, idiot." Ichigo said, scowling. "She came to us herself, by her own free will."

That made Rukia gasped. "You lie." She said evenly, strain hidden from her face.

It was now Ichigo's turn to shrug. "Does that looks like a lie to you?" he asked arrogantly, pointing to something behind her.

Warily, Rukia turned to look. She gasped. It was Orihime who she saw from the distance! She was riding with a bespectacled man astride a brown horse. Without a doubt, Kurosaki's men were also behind.

"Rukia-chan! Get away!" Inoue screamed as loud as she could. "I'll be fine, just get away!"

Immediately Rukia turned to glare at Ichigo. "Let her go!"

"I think not." Ichigo said. "Ishida seems to be taking quite a fancy with her."

Without a word, Rukia drew her sword.

"You wish to fight me?" Ichigo asked in amusement.

"Draw your sword and fight." She commanded.

Ichigo just glared at her. "Do you think you can fight me? Put down your sword woman, before you get hurt."

The other just looked at him. "One of us will die before the sun sets and your men arrive." Rukia raised her sword. "Either way, it will be by my hand." Carefully, she steered her horse with one hand on the reigns.

It was not the time to observe his opponent in a superficial way, but Ichigo noticed how Kuchiki Rukia's eyes were alight with fire, making them more luminous than ever. Her face was flushed and her mouth was set in obvious concentration. She may be definitely smaller, but this was the woman who almost annihilated his forces with her cunning – thus, he knew she was not to be taken lightly.

It was wrong on all levels, but Ichigo could feel himself – his traitorous body – react to her iciness.

"Aa." He said simply as he drew out his sword as well. It was a large, cleaver-like sword, which had no guard but had wrappings around its hilt. To the untrained eye, it looked fairly primitive.

However, Rukia was aware that the sword was the Taicho's released shikai, and it had already been in that state, signifying the amount of power he carried. She immediately knew that a shikai to shikai battle was dangerous and messy. "I would like you to meet my Zanpaktuo, Lady Rukia… Zangetsu."

To Ichigo's surprise, Rukia held out her sword and immediately, it changed to a shikai form. Unlike the large one she lugged to his camp before or the simple katana just earlier, this one was long and elegant, a bit thin, and it was white from the tip to the hilt, like it was carved from ivory and it had a graceful white silk ribbon from the end that floated about like gossamer. "Then learn the name of my Zanpaktuo, Kurosaki Taicho." Rukia said, as befitting the rules of battle "She is Sode no Shirayuki, and she is not to be underestimated."

Ichigo was able to contain his amazement. "I see, so you are a shinigami as well, Lady Rukia; that was not in our information."

"Your spies are worthless, Kurosaki Taicho." Rukia said simply. "Let me pass, or this will be a matter that more than two divisions in Gotei 14 that you will have to deal with. The Central 46 will not take lightly any complaints from Taichos." She inclined her head regally. "You will not only deal with the 6th and 5th divisions, but from my own division and its allies as well."

The scowl was still set in Ichigo's face. "Who are your allies then, Lady Rukia? From what division do you belong?"

"The 13th."

Ah, so she belonged to the division of Ukitake Jyushiro. Ichigo was surprised to see a Kuchiki a member of the upstanding and morally strong division under one of the most respected and powerful Taichos in the whole of Gotei 14. Ukitake Taicho was a man that Ichigo respected and often listened to. Now he was in a quandary. If he insisted on taking Kuchiki Rukia by force, he would have to contend not only with the lady's brother and fiancée, but also with her captain, as well as the Taicho of the 8th division, Kyoraku Shunsui, a close friend and staunch supporter of the 13th's head.

Ichigo knew that neither man would be any easier to deal with.

Before either one could move however, a spiritual arrow flew towards them, hitting the ground just inches from the foot of Rukia's horse. The action triggered the horse to panic and she reared abruptly.

Rukia gave a shriek of surprise as her horse tried to unseat her. Fortunately, her wits were still within her reach and Rukia nimbly jumped off the horse, grabbing the reins with one hand while brandishing her sword in the other. She might have been unseated, but her neck was not broken from a dangerous fall. She was really going to kill whoever took a shot at her horse!

Sword met sword.

Rukia grit her teeth out as the force of Ichigo's Zangetsu forced her back. She had no choice but to let go of the horse in order to utilize her full capabilities in fighting.

"No!" cried Rukia as the horse ran off, apparently spooked. "Damn you, let me pass!" she shouted, parrying the sword.

"Stay still, woman!" Roared Ichigo in his meanest voice; giving her a full blast of his frightening scowl. "Don't make me hurt you!"

"Bastard." Hissed Rukia as she used shunpo to get behind Ichigo.

Suddenly, the scowling bastard was already behind her.

"Not bad," Ichigo growled in grudging respect, "that was fast, Lady Kuchiki. Unfortunately, it is not as fast as mine."

Yes, Rukia was well aware of his reputation as a master user of shunpo. After all, he and her Nii-sama had but one sensei, the goddess of flash herself, Shihouin Yoruichi.

Blades clashed and sparks flew.

He might have studied under the goddess of flash, but Kuchiki Rukia had an ace up her sleeve.

Her kido.

Unlike other shinigami, Rukia was among the select few who were born with natural talent and mental capacity for the demon arts. Understanding her abilities allowed Rukia to take advantage of the kido books in the Kuchiki library. She was not betrothed to the most proficient kido-user in Seiretei for nothing, and Rukia learned a lot from Aizen Taicho herself.


Ichigo was lucky he was able to step back before she singed his face. Kuchiki Rukia really was a force to reckon with; she was skilled enough to cast a kido without incantations. The short window of opportunity was exploited and Rukia used the moment to disable him with a kick to the gut and another kido. "Restrain!"

The orange-haired taicho grunted as he fell to his knees. Without waiting for his reaction, Rukia decided to shunpo away. But she had hardly cleared the first kilometer when a hand grabbed her arm.

All she could do was gasp as Kurosaki Ichigo knocked her zanpaktuo from her hand with a well-placed, successive move that hit and jarred her right wrist, elbow, and shoulder. As Sode no Shirayuki hit the ground with a dull clang, Rukia's left arm was pinned behind her as she was pulled flush against the length of Ichigo's body. "Not bad; but didn't anyone tell you that I can break through restraining kido?"

Her eyes widened. How dare he manhandle her? How dare he place her in such an undignified position?

Before Ichigo could feel the need to gloat, she reared her head back and collided it painfully with Ichigo's chin.

"Bitch!" shouted Ichigo as he threw Rukia over his shoulder. "Cease!" he ordered forcefully as he held back a flailing noblewoman who was trying to scratch or bite him into letting her go. Running out of options, he decided instead to swat her bottom several times.

"Bastard!" howled Rukia, squirming from the pain to her posterior.

"Rukia-chan!" Inoue was shouting as she neared her friend. "Kurosaki Taicho, please don't hurt her!"

Ichigo held Rukia in place by her back. "We can do this the easy way or the hard way, Lady Kuchiki; either way, you're coming with me.

"I do not yield, Kurosaki Ichigo, I do not yield!"

C. LeShay's corner (Commonly known as Author's Notes): Thank you to my e-father, Kaya, the beta reader for this fic! I can't believe that your evil twin Bananakaya made you do all this; no credit goes to him.