Ink Poisoning

Author's Notes: I wonder if I'm doing anything productive lately.
Disclaimer: Just borrowing.
Summary: He'll sit there and take it for as long as she wants. Rukia couldn't be happier. Drabble.

It was an after-school ritual that was held after the last class of the day was dismissed.

Ichigo would stuff his textbooks in his backpack and walk out the classroom quickly, rebuffing invitations to play games at the arcade.

Next time, he'd say vaguely before rushing off.

It's now such a common occurrence that even Keigo can't seem to get upset. He just shrugs and gives Ichigo a thumbs up.

Next time, then.

The thing is, no one really knows where Ichigo goes on these afternoon jaunts.

Some say he's running an underground cock-fighting ring in an abandoned warehouse down the street.

The romantics are certain that he's got a girlfriend tucked away at some other school. A pretty one judging from the speed he takes off after the bell rings.

Chad, Inoue and Ishida just shrug.

He's doing his homework, they would say.

This explanation is usually met with hearty laughter to the consternation of the trio.

The strawberry-blonde boy doesn't mind because the speculation allows him to save some vestiges of his pride, because the truth is, he was rushing home to do homework.

And he couldn't be happier.

Because he's finally figured out how to exploit Rukia's fondness for drawing to his advantage.

There was something comforting knowing that she was sitting in front of him; nose slightly crinkled as she thought of what she would draw that day.

Ichigo prefers it that way since it kept Rukia quiet for however long it took her to complete her latest masterpiece.

It meant that she wasn't off killing god-knows-what, god-knows-where, all hours of the day.

It meant that Ichigo would know whenever her hollow-detector was activated and could have Kon on hand to play substitute for a few hours.

It meant that she couldn't rush off without proper back-up.

But most importantly, it meant his worst fear would never have to come to pass—not if he had breath left in his body and a zanpakuto in his hand.

And so he found himself spending most of his time after-school, sitting at his desk with one arm as Rukia's canvas, while the other struggled with calculus equations.

It wasn't long before his forearms would be filled with doodles of rainbows, pirate monkeys, and Chappy bunnies.

They were kind of cute.

If you squinted.

"Finished," Rukia declares, with a satisfied smile.

She's about to cap the marker when Ichigo silently presents her his other arm. Rukia beams because she's just got a new inspiration.

Chappy-pirate hybrids.

She couldn't be happier.