I don't own Bleach.

Title: The Call

Rating: T

Description: We had this huge fight, right before he was supposed to be deported. It was only until he was almost on the plane, until I realized I hadn't said goodbye … and that I needed to.

A/N: My good friend Arely suggested this song to me and I fell in love with it. It really inspired an old idea that I've been toying with for forever now. So, here it is in all its shining glory. This one is named after "The Call" by Regina Spektor. Oh, and, just so you know, the "war" she's going to talk about is fictional. Enjoy!

I first met him when I was a sophomore in high and I hated his guts.

He was rude and selfish and cocky and just … annoying. Every time I saw him, I just wanted to punch him in the face which — according to whom I was raised by — was very unlike myself. He was just so … irritating.

At homecoming my junior year, he asked me dance with him. It was weird — and, when he told me later that he only did it because his friends bet him twenty bucks that he wouldn't, I hit him — but I did it … because I had never danced with someone before.

It was during that song that I fell in love with him, I think. I remember it perfectly: low lights, the other kids swaying with the music, and his eyes … chocolate colored and deep as the sea. The way he looked at me that night was like he could see into my soul.

Even after the song ended, we still swayed. People were jumping up and down to the next song, and we just stared at each other.

I remember him grinning and then he grabbed my hand and we walked out of the gym and into the December air. He pulled me to his car and, after we got inside, he kissed me.

We were kind of an item after that. We slowly got to know one another, we fought often, and I shared probably some of the hottest, most romantic kisses with him. I never wanted anyone else except him. So, after dating through the rest of high school and then college … we got married.

His father couldn't afford for him to go to college, so he joined the military to go for free. My brother paid my college education. I lived with Ichigo until after college and then I moved into an apartment with him. Apart from the two weeks we took to Mexico for our honeymoon, we never really left our home except for work and … well, work.

I saw him every single day. I was ready to spend my whole entire life as Kurosaki Rukia. I was happy with him … I loved him more than anything in the world.

Then …

We had a fight.

They want him to go to a faraway land and fight in a war he never supported. I wanted him to refuse but he said that he couldn't and that his country needed him. I didn't want him to leave … we had plans and a future and something like this could … take him away from me.

I knew that I was being selfish but I couldn't help it. I hadn't spent a day away from him since I was a junior in high school. Know, nearly eight years later, he tells me he's going to be gone for the next six months? It hurts to be away from him for more than a few hours, not to mention so many days and months.

"Ichigo," I said, feeling tears fall down my cheeks. I felt a pounding in my stomach, but, at this point, I couldn't really feel it. I felt despair and pain. "You can't go!"

"I have to!" he yelled, throwing random things into a bag. "I have to go … my country needs me and I can't just … stay and not help. It's not like I have a choice anyway. I'm sorry, Rukia, but I have to go." He grabbed a photo we took at the beach a couple weeks ago, pulled it out of its frame, and folded it, putting it in breast pocket.

I cried out, fell to my knees, and then coughed. He looked over to me, his eyes glassed over as if he was really about ready to cry. He knelt down beside me and that gave me the perfect opportunity.

I looked up to him and planted my lips on his. He grabbed my arms but didn't yank me away. Good, I thought. Just a bit more time, and he'll stay with me … he has to. I lifted my arms and placed them under his shirt. I was about ready to life it up off his head, which pretty much guaranteed what was going to happen next, but he stopped me.

"Rukia," he whispered, his lips just millimeters from mine. "I have to go. I'm sorry."

I bowed my head. "I won't let you."

"I'm sorry."

"You can't leave!" I cried, feeling the tears fall down my cheeks. God, when did I become so needy and weak? Back in grade school, I could kick anyone's ass if they so much as looked at me wrong … now, I'm crying and begging for him not to leave … I'm so stupid!

"I'm sorry!"

He got up, grabbed his bag and left. The door slammed from behind him. I felt like my air supply had been cut off. Why did he leave? What was going on?

I could remember everything that had happened to us since we met. We fought at least once a day but we had never gone to bed angry. We always talked — or yelled — our problems until we were both happy with each other again. We had never walked out on one another … ever.

He was leaving me all alone for the next six months to go to a land half way across the world and he left me without solving the problem. I felt the pounding again and looked down. My belly was curving slightly but I wasn't huge yet … he was just big enough to talk to me, to tell me what to do.

I smiled lightly.

Then, I had an epiphany.

It started out as a feeling
Which then grew into a hope
Which then turned into a quiet thought
Which then turned into a quiet word

Ichigo was leaving and I … I was sitting here, crying about it and not helping the situation at all. No matter how much I begged him to stay, he couldn't … he had to help his country, the price he had to pay for going to college … not really "price" — more … duty.

He'd left … not because he didn't love me or because he hated me. I couldn't take it — he couldn't take not being able to say goodbye when he knew that I didn't want him to go. He had to escape … because it would hurt too much to say goodbye.g

I stood up and ran to grab my purse. By now, he probably already at the airport, about ready to depart to the training facility that would help him become a soldier.

And then that word grew louder and louder
Til it was a battle cry

There was nothing that I could do to keep him here, so I had to go to him … and try to save our goodbye; our last moment with each other until I saw him, six months from now.

I ran to my car, threw the door open, and got inside. I slammed the key into the ignition and turned the car on, speeding off into traffic. I was breathing hard and the pounding in my stomach was at full blast, but I ignored it.

I'll come back
When you call me
No need to say goodbye

"We'll be there soon," I said quietly, taking the exit.

I was speeding but I didn't care. I couldn't care. Not when he was about ready to leave me and we weren't on good terms. We were always on good terms. This time would be no different.

Just because everything's changing
Doesn't mean it's never
Been this way before

Till death do we part, until death after we part, we would stay on good terms. I wouldn't let him risk his life for my freedom, for his country's freedom, if we weren't still as close as we possibly could be … from thousands of miles away.

I was only a few blocks away when I finally got stuck in traffic. It was backed up forever … I guess someone was in a wreck or something. I could see the planes in the distance, taking off. I saw a particular one, and wondered if that was his plane.

All you can do is try to know
Who your friends are
As you head off to the war

I didn't have the time to wonder.

Pulling into an illegal parking space, I turned off the car, and ran and ran and ran. I bumped into a few people, who glared at me, but I didn't stop running.

The airport came into view not a few minutes later, but I felt like I was going to pass out. I stopped to rest by a building and someone passed me, looking at me strangely. I didn't look up to him.

Pick a star on the dark horizon
And follow the light

"Hey, Miss, are you okay?" he asked. His voice was familiar but I didn't look up at him. Whoever he was, he wasn't how I was looking for. I had to find Ichigo … I had to get to him …

I nodded. "I'm … trying to get to my husband. I have to apologize. I was so stupid … I just … it's so far away …"

"Where is he?"

You'll come back
When it's over
No need to say good bye

I pointed to the building that was so close and yet … as cliché as it sounds, so far. I just couldn't seem to reach it. I needed him. "Well, he's one lucky guy to get a beautiful woman like you running after him," the stranger said sincerely.

Finally, I looked up.

It was him.


You'll come back
When it's over
No need to say good bye

I cried out and grabbed his uniform. He pulled me into a hug and kissed my forehead. "You always were crazy," he commented lightly. I laughed through my tears.

"I'm so sorry," I said. "I – I was being selfish and stupid. I know, I know that you have to go and I was being stupid. I'm so sorry."

He laughed, running his fingers through my hair. "It's just the hormones talking," he said. "The baby must be sad, because you are." He leaned down, pushing up my shirt until my stomach was exposed. He pressed his lips up against it. "How're you doing, little guy?" he asked. "It's Daddy. Don't be sad, I just gotta go help a few people for awhile. I'll come back, I promise."

Now we're back to the beginning
It's just a feeling and no one knows yet
But just because they can't feel it too
Doesn't mean that you have to forget

I watched him talk to my belly like our baby was right there. I felt the waterworks coming again, but I stopped them. I needed to be strong for him, for both of them.

"I love you," I whispered, running my fingers through his orange locks.

Let your memories grow stronger and stronger
Til they're before your eyes

He looked up at me, kissed my tummy again, and then stood up fully, and then rested his lips on mine. They lingered there for a while, and then he pecked my nose before lifting my chin so I had to look at him straight in the eye.

"I love you too. And no matter what," he said. "I will return to you. Nothing's going to keep me from you. Got that?" I smirked and I shook my head, smiling.

You'll come back
When they call you
No need to say good bye

"Yes sir," I replied.

And then he pulled me back into his arms. "I won't be gone for long," he said. "You probably won't even miss me. I'll get to IM you and call you whenever I can. We can write letters … it's not like I'm going to vanish. I'm right here."

He touched the skin covering my heart. "And I'm right here," he whispered. "We don't even have to say goodbye, because there'd be no point. I'm not going anywhere … and I'm coming back."

I nodded.

"I'll wait for you," I whispered.

He smiled.

You'll come back
When they call you