A/N: Hello and welcome to my sixth Bleach story. This one deals with the Chizuru X Tatsuki pairing. This is a yuri pairing and will contain sexual material at a later chapter. Only continue to read if you are prepared for such things. Alright, let's get this started.

Disclaimer: Reading this fic might be detrimental to your ferbroom health; please read with caution and know that I do not own Bleach.

Tatsuki Arisawa couldn't help but feel irritated as she sat at her desk, effortlessly blocking out her teacher's current lecture. She didn't care about school right now, at least not about the learning part. Yet another day had come where so many desks were left unfilled.

Yasutora Sado was absent. Uryu Ishida was gone as well. Ichigo hadn't shown up in awhile. That girl, Rukia, the one who used to have a tendency to sometimes slip from Tatsuki's memory entirely, still left an empty desk. There was only one vacant spot that truly captured Tatsuki's full attention, however, and that was the seat reserved for her best friend, Orihime Inoue.

Tatsuki wished she didn't know anything, that she didn't have any suspicions. She wished she was able to just turn a blind eye to the absences, laugh them off, and just say, "Orihime will be here tomorrow." She wished this, but knew things had already progressed beyond that. Orihime wouldn't be there tomorrow.

It was really most infuriating. Tatsuki knew they were all hiding something from her. She supposed they must think it something that has nothing to do with her. She knew otherwise. She knew that somewhere out there, there was something… something dangerous that was not just a threat to her but to every other one of Ichigo and the other's so called friends left in the dark.

Tatsuki hated this sort of secrets. She hated being pushed aside. She hated having others trying to protect her without telling her what it was she was being protected from. At that moment she hated them all for abandoning her, for casting her aside and not letting her at least understand anything. She hated Uryu. She hated Chad. She hated Rukia. She especially hated Ichigo. She didn't hate Orihime. She couldn't. After all, not seeing a girl sitting in the empty chair she stared at was the thing she hated most.

Then, as Tatsuki still stared, all of a sudden there was a girl sitting in that chair. Tatsuki's eyes did a double take at the disturbance to their focus. A girl was sitting in Orihime's spot now, but of course the girl wasn't Orihime. No, it certainly wasn't Orihime. Chizuru Honsho, the class lesbian, a usual punching bag of Tatsuki's, was now filling the vacant desk a dumb smile etched across her face.

Alarmed at the sudden change in seating, Tatsuki broke her gaze and looked around. She was amazed to see that most of the class had already left. She had been so focused on menatal distractions that she hadn't noticed the end of the lecture, and the bell dismissing her and the other students. Forcing her things into her bag, Tatsuki decided to turn back to the redhead.

"Hey! Chizuru! What do you think you are doing sitting there?" Tatsuki called out.

Chizuru turned to meet gaze with her classmate. She sighed lightly. "Nothing in particular."

"That's Orihime's seat!" The tomboy said with deep scowl.

"I know that! Why else do you think I'd be sitting here?" Chizuru said with a good laugh.

"Why are you sitting there?!" Tatsuki growled; she wasn't in the best of moods and was always looking for a good excuse to vent a little.

"Because I miss Hime…" The bespectacled girl said longingly.

Tatsuki felt a part of her rage slip away. Though Chizuru's perpetual pursuance of Orihime was something that usually earned the overbearing lesbian a good beating, in this case Tatsuki could feel for her. Even if the redhead's desires were not in Orihime's—or Tatsuki's—best interests, Tatsuki at least understood that Chizuru was suffering right now just like she was. Still, even if she was able to understand where Chizuru was coming from on this occasion, the girl's position in Orihime's chair was still inexplicable to her.

"Okay… but… how does sitting in the chair help…?" Tatsuki asked, staring confusedly at the other.

"Hime isn't here for me to pet and cuddle right now but just think about how much she's sat at this chair." Chizuru said with a slight smile and a bittersweet voice.

"Yeah? She has been sitting there for the whole school year so far… I just don't see why that matters…"

"Oh? But just think about how much time the seat of this chair has spent in contact with Hime's cute butt." Chizuru said in a whimsical voice, offering a nice slap to the seat. "And all the times when she would take a nap or put her head down her cute breasts would touch this desk" She added, almost salivating and running her cheek along the side of the desk.

Tatsuki initially felt her rage begin to build at the perverted girl's remarks. She then came to realize how depraved and desperate they were. She felt almost sad for the girl. She shook her head.

"You sick weirdo…" Tatsuki commented with a soft giggle as she grabbed her bag and stood up, turning away from the other. As Tatsuki stared once more back into the classroom she noticed that Chizuru looked a little relieved to be escaping a conversation with her unscathed.

School was out now. Tatsuki was supposed to attend training with the karate team today but wasn't of a mood. As the star of the team she knew her coach wouldn't hesitate to let her have a day off if she asked. It might be a selfish request, but Tatsuki knew any training done today would be done halfheartedly. She supposed the coach much have noticed her slipping of late as well, for upon arriving at the karate team's dojo her request was allowed with even less fuss than she had imagined.

Tatsuki sighed as she began the walk back through the halls. She didn't know why she was so worked up over everything today... Actually she did know why she was, it was just the one thing she always denied herself. Chizuru's feelings for Orihime might have been more perverse in nature, but in truth they were almost identical to what Tatsuki truly though of her best friend.

That's why being separated like this was hurting so much. Orihime wasn't just a best friend to Tatsuki. Orihime was her world, her obsession. Even if it lacked the cuddling, groping and petting of Chizuru and Orihime's relationship, Tatsuki knew it was no different.

Orihime fascinated her. Orihime had long captured her heart. Since they first met, since Tatsuki first stood up to protect her, Orihime had been the target of her best friend's affection, her love. Tatsuki felt somewhat ashamed in remembering that what first motivated her to protect Orihime from bullies was the girl's beauty rather than any sense of justice.

There was little that separated what Chizuru felt for Orihime and what Tatsuki did. Some might say that they were the same save for the fact that Chizuru was more open with her feelings. Tatsuki kept them inside. Despite her physical strength and skill Tatsuki was weak. Her insufferable shyness, her fear, the most intolerable mess of emotions, all prevented her from rising up and making stride toward what she sought.

Chizuru might be called overbearing, perverted, or obtuse, but Tatsuki could only be called stupid. It was only someone stupid who would forcibly deny herself the thing she wanted most, hide it deep inside, try to wash it out of existence, only to let it somehow compact to new unbearable levels of intensity, where living without it became impossible. Yes, it was the clear marking of an idiot, or perhaps a masochist, either way Tatsuki had let it happen, and as Orihime continued to slip away from her, she felt the very real danger of her whole world suddenly imploding.

Tatsuki looked up from her thoughts. She was outside Karakura High School now. Students still lingered about conversing with one another. Tatsuki found her eyes drift for the second time in what was a short while to the figure of Chizuru Honsho, who leaned against a tree, a morose look in her eyes.

Tatsuki approached her. Despite their rocky relationship, she didn't hate Chizuru. If anything she envied her. She truthfully identified with her, it was just that protecting Orihime came before everything else.

"Hey Chizuru! What are you up to now? Don't tell me Orihime's shoulder brushed up against that tree or something like that…" Tatsuki gave a dark laugh as she walked even further towards the redhead.

"Hmmm… I don't think so. Why, did it?" Chizuru gave a slight smirk as she addressed her sometimes aggressor. In the classroom she had still mostly been her usual self, but now she seemed so distant and melancholy.

"Uh… no." Tatsuki shook her head, giving another laugh.

Chizuru didn't continue the conversation. Instead she stood still, her eyes staring far ahead. The spiky-haired girl followed her gaze. She was watching the students as they passed. Her sad eyes would brighten and the slightest smirk would grace her lips every time a relatively attractive girl walked past.

"Are you staring at other girls now, Chizuru?! Don't tell me you've finally given up on Orihime?" Tatsuki said with forced warmth; Chizuru wasn't supposed to be anything but smiles and energy, this behavior wasn't like her.

"I'm beginning to think it might not happen with me and Hime." Chizuru sighed somberly.

Tatsuki almost laughed but thankfully didn't. She had to remind herself that she was the stupid one, not Chizuru. Even after reminding herself though, she still found the notion that Chizuru had ever actually thought she was going to get Orihime insane.

"What makes you think that?! Just because she's been missing school and avoiding everyone lately you think you should give up?!" Tatsuki fumed. Of course the words were more aimed at herself then the other.

"Wow Tatsuki Arisawa, you surprise me. First you initiate conversation with me and then you actually try and encourage me to go after Hime…." Chizuru gave a soft laugh. She added slyly, "So is the world spinning in reverse today or something?"

"Maybe it is. I'd say that sad look on your face as you look at new girls is fairly out of character for you as well."

"I just… I just don't know… I don't know what I'll do when my Hime slips away from me entirely. Where all the love will go…" The usually forceful girl said in a soft, reserved fashion.

"Chizuru…" Tatsuki said sadly, wishing she could confide in the other, but knowing Chizuru was the last person she could tell the truth, "Even if she doesn't want the same things as you, Orihime somehow still thinks of you as a friend. She won't abandon you entirely."

"I don't know… I get the feeling that she's involved in something scary… that anything could happen... and that maybe she'll just suddenly leave without saying anything and we won't ever see her again." Chizuru looked helpless. It was sad really.

Without warning Tatsuki delivered a hard jab to Chizuru's shoulder. The redhead reeled back in pain. She shouted, "Hey! Tatsuki! What was that for?! I didn't even do anything!"

"You were depressing me…." Tatsuki smirked.

"Well sorry." Chizuru said with a snide sarcasm.

Tatsuki shook her head as she looked around again. The grounds around the school were relatively empty now. There wasn't any more point in staying around here. She turned around to leave.

"Hey you! Where do you think you're going?!" Chizuru ran after her to catch back up.

"I think we've been through this enough times now, Chizuru, that you should know not to provoke me further after the first time I hit you." Tatsuki gave out a long sigh as she continued to walk.

"No, I mean, don't you have things you should be doing after school? You are the star of the karate team, right?" Chizuru asked, still following.

"I decided to take a break from all that today. I'm not in the mood."

"Yeah... You don't seem to be all that happy, do you?" the redhead said, once again with biting sarcasm.

Tatsuki scowled at the other. She soon noticed that they had exited the school grounds and were both now walking down the street together. She asked while showing signs of irritation, "Why are you following me?"

"I'm not. My house happens to be down this way too." Chizuru replied steadfastly, as if prepared for the question.

Silence fell for what seemed like a long time. Tatsuki tried to out pace Chizuru and lose her, but the redhead seemed to become determined not to fall behind. It was vaguely annoying and left Tatsuki confused. Why couldn't she just have a normal peaceful conversation with Chizuru? The two of them had more in common than Tatsuki cared to admit. Why was she so determined to keep their relationship strained?

"So, Chizuru... did you... when you were looking did you see anyone who stood out to you like Orihime?" the black-haired girl asked as she slowed back down to a casual stroll beside the other.

"Your mood really is off! The girl who pummels me and calls me a freak and a weirdo almost every day now is concerned over my love life?" Chizuru stared at her classmate awkwardly.

"I was just curious." Tatsuki sighed. "I know I go overboard some times."

"I don't think there is another girl in all of our school as wonderful as Hime. None of them were enough to make me just forget everything and smile..." Chizuru's eyes were filled with disappointment.

"Orihime..." Tatsuki muttered almost silently to herself.

"She's why you're upset too, right?" Chizuru asked in a soft voice.

"Don't... don't get the wrong idea..." Tatsuki choked out in reply.

"I wasn't suggesting anything. It's perfectly normal to get upset when your best friend starts to distance herself from you." Chizuru giggled slightly.

"Yeah..." the karate expert gave a faint blush and a reflective smirk.

"In fact, it probably effects you a lot more than it does me. A friendship like the one you two have doesn't come around everyday, now does it?" the redhead smiled.

"Yeah..." was all Tatsuki could say again. She didn't like talking about her relationship with Orihime. Deep down it wasn't what she wanted, and what she wanted disgusted her.

Things returned to silence. Not pure silence this time but rather the sound of Chizuru humming. Once again the bespectacled girl seemed to have underwent some grandiose change in spirit. Tatsuki didn't have any clue as to why this time. Maybe Tatsuki had inspired Chizuru in reminding the girl she at least was suffering less than one other person was.

As she listened to Chizuru's humming, Tatsuki suddenly heard a familiar sound. It started as a low growl but built to a the fiercest screech. She didn't turn around; it could have been too late then. Instead she rushed forward, tackling her classmate to the ground as a bizarre shadowy mass passed overhead at incredible speed.

"Oh wow! You're not really the type I typically go for, Tatsuki, but if you're that aggressive I might just learn to make an exception!" Chizuru squealed playfully as she looked up at the girl who had her pinned to the pavement.

"Shut up! We're in serious danger." Tatsuki said, fear in her eyes as she lifted her head to look around. Almost immediately her eyes came to a focus on the nearby shadowy mass.

This mass, this creature, with its grotesque body and ghostly white mask, was something that Tatsuki had encountered before. She didn't understand these things. They used to be invisible to her, then they started to appear as shapeless blurs to her, now she could make out every detail. She had three times personally encountered monster of this kind, one of which had even taken the shape of a man; all three times she had only narrowly avoided death.

Tatsuki hated these monsters. They were fierce, evil, and terrifying. Orihime was also involved with them. She had no knowledge of the story but she was certain Ichigo, with his strange black robe, had dragged her into conflict with them. The thought of Orihime being so callously tossed before the jaws of these monsters infuriated her to no end.

"What danger? I don't see anything." Chizuru looked around, her gaze followed Tatsuki's but seemed deeply lost.

Before Tatsuki replied the white-masked monster made a leaping jump at the two students on the ground. Tatsuki threw herself and Chizuru out of the beasts' claw path at the last second. The ground cracked deeply in two at contact with the monster's heavy claws.

"What the hell's going on?! There's something there, isn't there?!" Chizuru asked in a panic staring at the cracks to the pavement.

"Yeah... there's somethin', alright." Tatsuki spat as she postulated how to get herself and Chizuru out of this mess.

Chizuru adjusted her glasses and squinted her eyes while gazing in the direction of the dark creature. "Oh yeah, there is an area that's all blurry like there's something there... So what exactly is it?"

Tatsuki took a sigh of desperation as she replied, "A big fuckin' monster..."

"Y-you don't say..." Chizuru said nervously, backing away a little from the spot the creature stood at.

"Chizuru. When I give the signal let's run like hell." Tatsuki said, shaking with fear.

"Got it!" Chizuru agreed, the fear from Tatsuki's face seeming to transplant directly to hers.

"Okay now!" Tatsuki shouted almost immediately. Her and Chizuru stumbled to their feet and began to run. The monster ran after them. Tatsuki could feel the gap between it and them closing rapidly.

A/N: Cut it off right here. Another start. A fairly busy first chapter. I hope it wasn't boring. Lots of Orihime centric angst to go around here. I was hard placed as to how to characterize Chizuru. You see so little of her when Orihime isn't in the picture. All you ever see is her energetic, perverted side. As such, excuse me if you think she is out of character. This story really brings back memories of my Orihime X Tatsuki story. Considering that's one of my favorites I'd say it's probably a good thing. Oh and in case you were worried about placement this story is taking place sometime during the later part of the arrancar arc, while Ichigo and the others are all training for the fight with the arrancar. Anyways, tell me what you thought. I love reviews.

Discussing my most recent profile poll briefly, I asked who the coolest male Bleach characters were, as I felt like I was ignoring them. 23 people voted. The results were some what interesting. The top five were: 1: Kenpachi Zaraki (10 votes), 2: Byakuya Kuchiki (8), 2: Grimmjow Jeagerjaques (8), 3: Ichigo Kurosaki (7), and 3: Yasutora Sado (7). some pretty cool characters there; I've always thought Chad and Zaraki were some of the cooler characters. I was glad to see Hitsugaya not sweep up voters as I had imagined since of course I hate him. I was also glad to see no one voted for Nnoitra as I also hate him. Tetsuzaemon, Yamamoto, Stark, and Kensei should have got some votes in my opinion though. While running this poll, I went back and discovered that despite asking previously which girls are the hottest, and which ones you wanted me to write about, I've never actually asked about favorites. Since I had no other ideas, I've decided to just go with that for the new poll.

Anyways, please review. Reviews are good.