--Ichigo's POV--
As I walked along the water's edge with Rukia by my side and my bag heavy than normal, there was a long silence. School just let out and we were walking home. Rukia turned to the road that led to the clinic, but I continued heading straight.

"Where are you heading?" she questioned as I walked away.

"I have to go somewhere. You can head home; I'll be there in a little bit." I replied as I gave her a slight wave, not bothering to turn around.

I heard her give a disgruntled sigh as she headed to my house which was a temporary home for her until she got her spirit energy (reiatsu) back. But before I could head home, I had a little errand to do. After a few minutes, I turned onto a familiar road and walked down the sidewalk until I reached one of the largest houses on the road. I stepped up to the house, which was quite intimidating to someone who has never been here, with its western inspired architecture and dark colored wood on the outside. Double doors were the entrance to the four storied building that also gave the house a frightening look to it, but I was used to it.

I walked up to the front door and opened it, knowing the people inside wouldn't mind. As I walked into the two-storied foyer, I heard a familiar voice talking from a nearby room. She was speaking English, so I know that she was talking on the phone. I didn't bother to take off my shoes, because no one in this family didn't bother either, and actually found it kinda annoying whenever someone would while entering their house.

Maybe I should tell you about the people that live in this house. There are only two people though, so it should be easy.

First, there's granny. Her real name is Kaiyo Takashi, but everyone calls her Granny, and when you first meet her, she insists that you call her Granny and not Takashi-san or anything like that. She has pure white hair and in her 70's or 80's, I'm not sure if anyone really does know her age except her. Her soft chocolate eyes always shown with caring and love. She was about three inches shorter than me and pretty slim. She was always a joker, believe it or not. She always knows how to make anyone laugh and have a good time.

Second, is Lily Takashi, Granny's granddaughter. Lily is a cute girl, which is only six months younger than me. Lily is about six inches shorter than me and has a very spunky personality, like she was seven years old, but she is one of the smartest people in our class. Her parents were an interesting couple. Her dad was Japanese, with the traditional brown hair and brown eyes, and went to America for college. There he met Lily's mother. She was a combination of half Irish and half German, and looked like it, with light red hair, light green eyes with flecks of blue in them, and pale skin that easily freckled and burned under the sun. Lily was a combination of the two of them, with dark red hair and dark green eyes with the flecks of blue. Unfortunately, she picked up her mom's skin and burns very easily.
Lily has dual citizenship in both Japan and America cause she still has family in America and she goes back there every once in a while. The reason why she lives with Granny is because her parents died in a car accident about ten years ago, when we were both five. Ever since then, Granny has been Lily's guardian.

I followed Granny's voice to the living room. There I see her with a wireless phone in hand. She noticed me as I walked into the living room. She smiled and gave a small wave, then pointed upward, indicating that Lily was upstairs. I smiled back and gave a little wave of thanks. I walked back into the foyer and went to the stairs on the left side. Lily hasn't been in school for the last week cause she said that she had caught the flu or a really bad cold, she wasn't sure which, which is why Rukia hasn't met her yet.
As I started going up the stairs, I heard Granny yell, "Ichigo?!"

I looked over the railing and saw Granny standing in the hallway, "Yeah?"

"Could you get Lil her tea? I have to go into town for a little bit."

"Sure. In the kitchen, right?"

"Yeah, thanks."

I jumped over the railing and walked towards Granny.

"Don't do that. You could bust a knee cap or something." she said in a slightly scolding way.

"No I won't." I retorted with a smirk.

She sighed and looked at me as I walked past her to the kitchen. "Anything interesting happen while Lil was sick?" she asked.

"Not really." I lied, I couldn't tell her about Rukia and the whole substitute shinigami thing, "I brought Lily's homework from the last week."

"Thanks a lot Ichigo. I'm sure Lily will love that." she says, giving the last sentence sarcasm. "Well, I'm off. Can you stay here until I get back, or do you have to head home right away?"

"I should head home right after this. Karin and Yuzu don't know I'm here." I say thinking of Rukia.

"Oh, it's Ok. I'll see you tomorrow then."

"Yeah, bye Granny."

She then headed out the door and I went into the kitchen to find a kettle of almost boiling water on the stove and a mug on the counter next to it. I poured the tea and started walking back up the stairs. Lily's room was on the top floor, two stairways up. I know what you're thinking, "Two stairways, but that's three floors." Well, there's the three floors above ground and one under it, ya know, a basement. Once I reached the third floor, I walked three doors down to the right and knocked on the left side door. I heard nothing, so I just let myself in and saw Lily's room. In the middle, on the right side wall, was her bed, covered with blue and purple sheets, with a lump in the middle. On the pillows, I saw Lily's very unique red hair resting. Awwww, she was asleep.

I chuckled slightly as I walked up to the bed and pulled down the blankets. She groaned and stirred, but didn't wake up. I knew it was mean to wake her up, but I had to.

I sat down on the bed and began to shake her gently. She groaned again and finally opened one of her eyes.

"Ok, Ok, I'm up. Stop shaking me." she said in a sleepy voice.

"Hey." I said to her.

"Hey Ichi." she replies, still very sleepy.

"I've got something that'll wake you up." I reach into my bag and pulled out a stack of papers for her.

"What is this?"

"Make-up work. You better get started now." I joke with her.

She looks at it disbelief, then towards me with a pleading look on her face. "Fine I'll help you. But only if you get to school tomorrow. The teacher is giving you a week to turn that in. I'll help you during lunch."

She squealed and tackled me into a hug. "Thanks so much Ichi. You're the best."

"Yeah, yeah, I know. Now can you get off of me?" I say as I try to get her off. She lets go and sits up and takes the stack of paper away from me and placing it on the bedside table. "Oh, yeah, this is for you." I say giving her the tea.

"Thanks Ichi." she says as she takes it from me and takes a sip of it, "Are you staying?"

"Sorry, gotta go, but I'll see you tomorrow, right?"

"Yeah, bye till then."

We said good-bye and I headed back to home. It started getting dark as I was heading home, so I picked up the pace and arrived before it got completely dark.

When I got in Karin and Yuzu were already there and Yuzu had started dinner. I then noticed that something was...missing.

"Hey, where's dad?" I asked them.

"He said he was going to be late again." Karin answered.

I sighed and started walking to the stairs.

"Hey, where were you?" Karin asks suspiciously.

"Giving Lily her homework. She hasn't been at school for about a week." I reply.

"Oh, is she doing alright?" Yuzu asks worriedly.

"Yeah, she should be back in tomorrow, or she'll get into even more trouble." I said as I headed up to my room.

"So, that's why you were late." I hear Rukia say as I enter my room.

I close my door and drop my bag onto my bed. "Yeah, you might see her tomorrow if you're lucky." I say.

"Is she your girlfriend or something?" Rukia asks teasingly.

I stop in mid-step and start laughing hysterically. "You think I like her like that?" I ask as I start to calm down, "Oh God no. She's like a third sister to me. Sure, she's a really nice person, but we're more like brother a sister. I wouldn't dream of dating her."

She gave me a questioningly look, but decides to drop it, "Guess I'll meet her tomorrow."

"Onii-chan, dinner!" I hear Yuzu yell from the kitchen.

"Coming!" I yell down, and then look to Rukia, "I'll get ya dinner later." She just nods her head and sits on the bed she made in my closet as I head down stairs.