Bleach: Memories of the Nevermore
Chapter 1- Nevermore Forevermore
He lamented, allowing his tears of sorrow to finally wash away the pain he had held for so long. Every nightmare he had experienced since God-knows-when slipped through the emotionless mask he wore, a mask that was colder than even the white one he put on whenever he stepped onto the battlefield. Not a tear had been shed those times, but now, he allowed himself to weep.
It was over, and he was the only one left standing. All of them had died and only his hunched, sorrowful figure was untouched on the battlefield.
Across from him lied the corpse of the former fifth captain of the Gotei Thirteen, Aizen Sosuke; a monster in the form of a human. Twin nodachi stuck out from his heart, one as black as the dark side of the moon and the other a beautiful cerulean blue, the color of the skies and the dreams he so missed. Its hilt was crafted in the shape of a highly elegant fishhook while a long flowing tassel held onto the end.
If Tensa Zangetsu was the most powerful melee based zanpakuto ever, then the second one, the cerulean one, was the most outstanding elemental one. In its Bankai form, it was Ranka Amemitsukai (Storm Flower Rain Angel). It was so powerful that even the long-dead First Division captain, Yamamoto-Genryusai, had feared it. While Genryusai's was fire-based, his was water-based, capable of creating tsunamis with one swing of the blade. It was beautiful, so much so that only Kuchiki Rukia's zanpakuto was the only one that outdid it in that department.
But it didn't matter to him at that moment. All of them… everyone he had called friend, everyone that he had cared so much and poured out his heart for… all of them had passed away into blissful oblivion, all because of the monster before him, the one that had killed his heart so very long ago. They had fought and had slowly been chiseled away like a rock that was continuously being pounded on by the ocean. Now he was the only one that was a reminder of a time when things had seemed so simple.
"Don't cry, Ichigo," a voice so soft that it almost sounded like a breath spoke to him. The owner of the angelic voice gently cupped his chin and lifted his eyes up. There before him stood the avatar of his second zanpakuto, Amemitsukai.
Her name aptly described her. Flowing cerulean hair flowed like water in the wind while gentle silver eyes stared at his form. A moon-white dress covered her fragile body, only adding to her ethereal appearance. Around him ivory feathers gently flittered down to earth, disappearing once they touched the ground, but always leaving Ichigo with a sense of warmth that none of his comrades could ever provide him. No matter how he looked at her, though, Amemitsukai always looked like the person that had given her to him, a representation of the love he had so painfully lost that day: Inoue Orihime.
Orihime had given her to him on the day she had died, created from the hairpins that had once been the center of her power, and the representation of a promise that she had made so long ago with her brother.
"Please… don't cry, Ichigo," she so softly told him again, shaking her head while a sorrowful look painted her alabaster face.
"There is nothing left for me to live for," he quietly told her as more tears collected in his eyes. Ichigo's sight fell to the ground below as more sorrow laced words rolled off of his tongue. "All of them are dead."
A sad smile crept onto Amemitsukai's cherry lips. "It hurts me when you cry. When it rains in your mind, it pains me; when you are sad, so am I." Ichigo slowly returned his eyes to hers, taking comfort from her voice like a child would at the sound of a loved one. "Ichigo… when you hurt, you cry for more power and I give it to you because it makes my pain go away too." She kneeled down, leveling her eyes with Ichigo's as she began to caress his cheek. "It makes me happy when I can make the rain go away. So I will make the tears go away too."
"How?" whispered Ichigo, not helping it as all the pain he experienced throughout his life seeped through.
Amemitsukai wiped away a tear from his cheek and then pressed her gentle hands against his battle-worn face. "I can bring them all back."
For the first time in so many long years, Ichigo looked at her with hope. Was there really a way to see his friends' smiling faces one more time? Could he really see the loving faces of his family once more? Maybe... just maybe… he could tell Orihime how he slowly fell in love with her.
"I was born from Orihime's power," the avatar told him. "I can reject what has happened; I can send you back in time. With this knowledge, maybe you can change the future, and then it would never have to rain again."
A second chance, a way to right all the wrongs he experienced, a path that may lead to salvation from the eternal torment that was loneliness; no more tears, no more bitterness, and no more nights of having to miss the one he so tenderly grasped for in his dreams.
A way out.
"Tell me how," he whispered with hope staining his voice.
"Take my hand and repeat after me."
She fully stood and held out her hand for him to take. Ichigo grasped her thin hand and stood up, eyes burning with determination and the want to see the ones he had so dearly missed.
"Nevermore and Forevermore… My tears and my sorrows I shall forget… My pains and my broken heart I leave behind… May my feet tread on the path to a new dawn… And may my eyes never look back… My memories… My future… I Reject."
He repeated the words with fragile care, crying tears of hope and happiness that he was going to escape his nightmares. As soon as he finished the poem, Amemitsukai disappeared and around him the world began to fade. Ichigo blinked his eyes and each time the world would change, blurring and becoming something related to a watercolor picture that had yet to take shape. Finally, after one final blink, everything took shape.
"Thank you so much," the voice of a young girl reached his ears. He turned to the originator to see the ghost of a young girl that had yet to experience Soul Burial. "I wish those three didn't spill my flowers."
It was then that he recognized the dead girl as the one he had met on the day he had first become a Shinigami. Ichigo could barely remember having fought off three goons after they had so rudely messed up the flowers had been put at the phantasm's place of death.
"Your… welcome," he said in a wavering voice, unsure if this all was some dream or nightmare he was experiencing. The voice of his fifteen-year-old self seemed so foreign, as well as the warm twilight pallet in the skies that was the evening.
It really had worked.
He looked at his hands, seeing none of the calluses that would have marked them after so many countless battles. Ichigo's breath almost caught in his throat as all that had come to pass seemed so much like a night terror that had long escaped in his waking moments.
Another first for what seemed like forever, he smiled. Now, he could help his friends, nudging them all towards the higher tiers of power so that they could have a better chance.
"You okay?" questioned the ghost girl as she saw him staring at his hand with emotions she couldn't identify.
He turned to her with a friendly smile, and spoke with controlled happiness. "Never better. You may have to remind me about those flowers."
With that, he took off to his former home, subconsciously carrying himself like a general. But that couldn't be helped; he did become the First Division captain of the Gotei Thirteen- Byakuya and Soi Fon were not happy campers that day- after Old Man Yamamoto had passed on. It was a habit he had formed when walking out in front of the Shinigami divisions.
He closed his eyes as he gripped the door handle to his house, ready to rewrite the ending of his past life. It was a novel and now he was the author; there was no way he was going to let this become a tragedy again.
Author's Note: This is my first Bleach fan fic and I do hope that you all enjoy. It is time travel, something that isn't so new to us, but let it be known that I plan to make this good. There will be lots of pairings, especially by the end of this story and Kenpachi will have Bankai. You heard me right on that last part. If you're a fan of a particular character, I promise I will try my best to get them included in some major way. It will be a while before Grimmjow (who happens to be my favorite) and the other Espada make an appearance, but be rest assured it will be good. The action will be awesome! If you don't believe, read the reviews for my other stories and you shall hear the truth.
For those of you who are familiar with my Jinchuuriki Nine series and Shattered Eyes series (highly popular Naruto fiction that I have posted. Take a look if you are interested). I am seriously sorry that I haven't posted any chapters lately. One thing after another has prevented me from doing so, everything from end of the quarter to being out of town to getting grounded (I was starting to get withdrawals because of that last one), but the major one was that my internet kicked the bucket and I went without it for… well I lost track. Be expecting my chapters here in a while and I do hope you enjoy them.
Anyways, if you're confused about anything, it will be explained as the story goes on.
Feel free to correct me on any missed information or misspellings of characters' names. When I wrote this, I was flying blind without wikipedia to guide me. Even then, I still make errors and I want you all to point them out.
If you don't know, this chapter is really short by my standards. The next one should be much longer as it will chronicle Ichigo's regaining of his powers. We won't see Amemitsukai's bankai powers until much later or its initial release, or its sealed release until chapter three (the chapter is named Cry Wolf if you want a slight spoiler)
The name of this chapter is taken from a poem I once wrote. Still getting it published, but publishes like to reject everything. I make it game to see how many rejection letters or e-mails I get.
Next time: Chapter 2-Angels Fall First- Ichigo regains his Shingami powers, but still lacks Amemitsukai. He also begins to plan what he's going to do and how he's going to save the world from the monster that is Aizen. Until next time.