When he was young they called told him it was an imaginary friend

A/N: This was written ages ago but again, I neglected to post it here. Do enjoy! -Antha

Title: The Meaning of Soul
Author: Antharyn
Pairing: Hisagi Shuuhei/Kira Izuru
Rating: PG-15 because I tried and failed at a lime.
Notes/Warnings: I noticed people responded well to the style I used in writing "Universally Speaking" so I thought I'd give it another go only I opted for angst instead of fluff. Don't think I did too well, though. The beginning's fine but I think I screwed up ending it. But hey, I tried. XD
Summary: "Kira…can Shinigami die?"

When he was young they told him it was an imaginary friend. He thought he was his guardian angel.

But he was a Shinigami.

And he had a name.

Kira?

Kira taught him many things about the spirit world. They weren't ghosts, they were lost souls and they had a place to go: Soul Society. And he could see them because it was an innate talent he was born with; nothing to be afraid of, even if the Hollows did come after him.

Really? You'll protect me, Kira-san?

As a child he understood Kira's comings and goings.

Kira-san has other places to go to and other people to save. But you'll come back, ne?

And as a teenager it amazed him to no end that he would return looking as though he had never left.

Don't you Shinigami age the way we humans do?

As an adult, he didn't see it coming, didn't think it would ever happen but Kira had been coming in more often for longer assignments and there were measures to be taken for situations like those.

A gigai, huh? Cool.

He would never forget the day he finally got to touch the Shinigami.

---

He got the tattoo because Kira said he would probably look good with one or two.

I can't get one on my cheek, Kira. It's inappropriate. Everyone will see…

So he had it done on his bicep instead and he shows it to Kira with pride.

Do you like it?

Kira stars at him in astonishment then lifts his fingers to touch the fresh mark on his skin.

I copied the design you've got on your badge there, though, I'm pretty sure you noticed.

Then he stiffens when he Kira suddenly leans into him, resting his head on the dark-haired man's chest and fisting his hands into his shirt.

Kira?

He gingerly places a hand to Kira's back, neither pulling him close nor away, just holding him there and they stay like that for a few minutes, letting the time pass in silence until Kira eventually pulls away from him.

Something wrong?

The Shinigami shakes his head then looks down and starts fumbling with his waistband. He turns away for the sake of Kira's modesty and hears the blond chuckle at the gesture. Look at me, he hears the Shinigami say and he turns to see Kira lifting his shirt up and holding down the waistband of the jeans he wore to reveal a small, black flower tattooed on the right side of his hip.

It is an unfamiliar design. A flower still but not the Calendula 1 that he knew was the symbol of Kira's Division. Was that a poppy? 2

What does it mean?

Kira answers him and, confused, he asks why the Shinigami chose a flower that meant Oblivion. 2A

Kira strokes his cheek and counters by asking him why he chose one that meant Despair. 1A

---

Can Shinigami have relationships with real people?

He looks at the blond who actually looked a little younger than him now that the years have passed. Kira sits up from where he had been lying on the grass and he follows suit.

It takes Kira a while to start but the blond slowly explains to him how a relationship between a living person and a Shinigami was practically impossible, even with the use of a gigai.

Shinigami have a duty to Soul Society. To the lost souls and the living.

Add that to the fact that the Shinigami were dead and that none of them really stayed in one place for too long.

No, the blond says sadly, Shinigami can't have relationships with living souls.

He nods and leans in to kiss Kira anyway.

---

The Hollow lets out an eerie scream as it lunges for Kira.

It is the first time that Kira has had to shed his faux body in front of him to fight. It is raining and he is crouched on the sidewalk watching with bated breath, holding Kira's gigai close. The blond jumps out of the way as the Hollow makes a grab for him and throws a kidou spell at it as it tries to get him in mid-air.

Sparks fly in the air, reflecting against the falling rain and bathing the alley in red light. When he can see again, Kira is standing over him, drenched in the rain and offering a hand to help him up.

Kira's gigai was still warm against him despite the rain and he knows he will never get used to the feeling of the blond's body like this, soft and warm but not breathing.

He looks up at Kira and sees the small trickle of blood running down the side of the blond's face.

Kira…can Shinigami die?

---

The lither body arches beautifully against his slightly larger frame and he leans down to kiss Kira, savoring every whimper and every breath because he doesn't know when he will be able to again, doesn't know how long the Shinigami will be gone this time around or if he'll be coming back at all.

The sheets wove around their hips and legs until he impatiently tosses them away, wanting to feel every inch of the Shinigami's skin against his. Kira moans, cries out and whispers his name in a breathless mantra, overcome with desire and need.

How long, Kira?

The blond clings to him, his short nails digging into his skin uncomfortably but he doesn't care because it means that, at least for now, Kira is here with him and he can feel him.

Pain. Pleasure. Everything.

He changes his angle and listens to Kira's pleasure intensify.

How long?

His thrusts are erratic now that he has lost any semblance of control and his hands are bruising where he held the blond's hips down against the mattress. Kira writhes and screams beneath him then comes untouched, his slender body straining as his climax galvanizes his every muscle. He follows shortly, letting out a hoarse cry and collapsing on top of his lover's trembling form.

He stays silent as he listens to them both trying to regain their breath, unwilling to move off of Kira or even move an inch.

Promise me you'll come back.

He's begging silently.

Promise.

Silently because he knows Kira can't.

---

The small shop had always looked empty to him, run-down and seemingly lifeless, but he passes it by everyday in hopes of sensing Kira's presence or seeing the blond walk through those lopsided doors.

Today is the first time he has seen anyone in the shop and he marvels at how he could have missed the presence of a man this big and with this much spiritual energy all this time. He follows the man who introduced himself as Tessai into the back of the shop, which was actually larger than it looked from the outside.

A door slides open and he steps into a small room that was mostly empty save for its meager furnishings and the tall, blond man sitting on one corner resting his back against the wall.

Are you Urahara?

The man nods. Brown eyes glint under the shadow of a striped hat, regarding him intently and he swallows hard.

Please…tell me about the Shinigami.

---

He kisses Kira's tenderly as he lowers the blond back down on the mattress. Kira is still panting, trying to regain the breath that had been stolen from him during their earlier activities. His blond hair is spread out on the pillow like a halo around his head, reminding him of the guardian angel he had thought Kira was all those years ago.

All those years ago…

He gently strokes Kira's cheek, feeling the Shinigami lean into the touch. Warmth emanated from his fingers touched Kira's skin and he skimmed his hand lightly along his body, down his chest, lingering on the tattoo on Kira's hip before continuing their sensual exploration over the body he has already mapped completely. The blond sighs softly, whispering his name.

He closes his eyes and settles down next to the Kira, reaching out and pulling the blond towards him. Kira's cheek is warm on his chest, his blond hair a pleasant, tickling sensation on his neck and the feel of his lover, his scent, his presence, his everything makes him wants to tell him he loves him.

Makes him wants to tell him everything because he knows about the late 9th Division Vice-Captain, Hisagi Shuuhei, and knows he was once Kira's lover as well.

He knows it's this Shuuhei's squad insignia that Kira has allowed to mark his body forever and knows how he had been killed in the Great War as he stood protectively between Kira and Kira's own former Captain, Ichimaru Gin.

And he knows that he is this Shuuhei's reincarnate, that it's probably the only reason Kira stays and it hurts but he doesn't care.

He had made up his mind shortly after Urahara had told him and he wouldn't let on that he knew.

He loves Kira, he's pretty sure he's done that on his own, and he knows Kira loves him back.

Never mind if what started this, if what had drawn Kira to him all those years ago, was the spirit of another man from another time.

It should seem fitting, after all, that the very same soul that died for Kira now lived for him again.

END.

1 The insignia of Soul Society's 3rd Division is the flower Calendula. It means Despair.

2 The insignia of the 9th Division is a Poppy. It means Oblivion.