Aloe!

This is a ONESHOT for Tesla. And I say oneshot because that's all it is. So please do not mistake this for a fanfic (for my other works people seem to get that confused...Oneshot is a oneshot and nothing more.)

Okay, that said, please excuse any confusion you might have in the beginning. It'll make sense at the end, k?

Alright so...if you like, review!


"Do you have a death wish?!" cried Stark, putting up his arm to block me from walking out the door.

I stared at him, "No, not really."

He scratched at the necklace like hollow mask fragment on his neck, "Then why the hell are you going there?"

"Well," I replied, "I just have a feeling…"

Stark frowned, "You and your 'feelings'…" He removed his hand from the wall and yawned, "Well, I can't stop you… But I hope you know what you're getting yourself into."

I smiled at him, "Don't worry, you know I'll be able to take care of myself."

He shook his head at me and walked past, falling onto his mountainous pile of pillows. "That's not what I was worried about…" he grumbled.

"Ah, don't worry, I won't let ol' spoon kill me." I smiled.

A smile flickered across his face, "Better not let Nnoitra hear you call him that…"

I stuck my tongue out at him, "Meh, I'm not afraid of him…" I opened the door, "See ya round, Starkie."

I chuckled as I heard a pillow slam against the door; Stark really did hate that nickname.

"Now then…" I muttered to myself, "Lets go and meet my new espada…"

***

"Gah!" I gasped, blood pouring down my chin. The crescent blade was pressed against my throat, just barely cutting into my skin.

"Che, retard, did you really think I'd let you join?" laughed the tall, lanky espada. The tattoo on his tongue caught my eye a few times, and I couldn't help but wonder if by getting it tattooed in that particular place had killed his taste buds.

He sneered at me, roughly grabbing my chin so I was looking directly into his eyes. "I don't want a woman fraccion, and definitely not some weakling like you." He wiped some blood off my face and licked his fingers, before scowling and pulling back, letting me crash to the sand in a bloody heap.

I struggled shakily into a sitting position, tearing off strips of my clothing and quickly using it to bandage my more serious wounds.

The tall espada turned around, "Tch. Women don't belong on the battlefield with men. Get the hell out of here before I change my mind and kill you."

I didn't move.

"I said get the hell out of here woman!" he snarled, raising his crescent bladed zanpakuto.

I didn't even flinch as it came within inches of my face; I was unafraid, though my instinct cried for me to save myself.

"Ya really piss me off!" he yelled.

I blinked. "What would you have me do, Nnoitra-sama?"

His expression went surprised, then even more infuriated than before. "Die, Goddamit!"

The blade sliced across my ribs and arm; a quiet whimper escaped my lips, but nothing more.

Nnoitra turned and shouldered his blade, "Stupid woman, ya should have gotten away when ya could."

He began walking away, back towards his quarters.

Wincing slightly, I started to get to my feet, only to find a gloved hand in front of my face. My eyes moved upwards to find a semi-familiar face staring down at me expressionlessly.

"Here," he said in a quiet voice.

I stared at him and slowly raised my own hand. Before I knew what happened, he had slung my arm over his shoulders and was half carrying me away.

"What are you-?" I gasped, the full weight of my wounds bearing down on me. He didn't answer, only continued to carry me.

My head began to buzz as my body threatened to fail me; it took a lot of energy to just keep my eyes open.

After a while, he spoke. "I do not know why you came here unless you were willing to be killed. Nnoitra-sama does not like others, and definitely not women."

I noticed, I thought.

The scenery changed as he led me into the building; I had never been to this area before, so I had no idea where we were.

The strange fraccion opened a door; there was a large room with little furniture or decoration. It was composed of a bed, closet, and a round table with four chairs beneath a glassless window. There was also a door which I guessed led to the bathroom.

I let out a grunt of pain as he sat me down on the bed, pushing my shoulders back so I was lying down.

"Stay here." He said, before turning and walking out the door.

A few minutes later he came back in, a pile of bandages and other medical things balanced in his arms. I attempted to sit up, but groaned as my whole body throbbed painfully.

"You shouldn't move just yet," he said quietly as he dumped the meds on the bed. I let out a sigh, before staring at him.

"Who are you?" I asked, "I've seen you with Nnoitra before… You are his fraccion, right?"

He unraveled the roll of bandages, his gold colored eyes calm. "Yes," he replied. "You may call me Tesla."

Tesla came towards me; he gently took hold of my arms and pulled me into a sitting position. A slight gasp came from me as I squeezed my eyes shut; my head spun and I felt like I was going to throw up.

When I opened my eyes, I looked up at him.

"I need to remove your shirt." He said softly.

"Uh…" I stared at him, my cheeks turning pink. I understood why, but still, having a guy remove your shirt was… odd to say the least. "O-okay…" I muttered, turning my head and closing my eyes.

I felt his hands brush against my sides as he carefully peeled my shirt off and over my head; when it was gone I blushed darker, hoping my bra was intact.

I glanced down, it was. But that wasn't what kept my looking down; my wounds were indeed serious and still bleeding quite a bit.

Tesla went to the pile of meds and began rummaging through them; I took the moment to distract myself from my injuries and examine him.

Tawny colored hair matched with gold eyes, eye, I corrected myself. An eye patch covered his right eye, and there was a strange green stripe on his cheek just centimeters beneath it. His hollow mask fragment was an upper jaw piece on his forehead like a circlet; mine was similar, only I had two long fang teeth curving down towards my ears.

He felt my eyes on him, and glanced at me, before coming to stand in front of me with a small container in his hands.

"This may sting," he said, twisting open the top. I winced as he pressed the cold goop to my wounds, my hands grasping the blankets tightly.

"Does he treat all newcomers this way?" I growled; my jaw clenching. My eyes widened when he smiled and chuckled softly.

"Yes, he does. You should consider yourself lucky… Most arrancar are killed, especially female ones." Tesla went to the bathroom and came back with a bowl of hot water and a washcloth.

"Lucky me," I half laughed, and half gasped as the hot water dripped into my wounds as he began wiping away the dried blood and dirt. I closed my eyes for a moment, before opening them again.

"Tesla?" I asked quietly. His eyes flickered from my wounds to my face; "Why are you helping me? Won't you get into trouble with Nnoitra for this?"

Again he smiled, his eyes sparkling. "Nnoitra-sama need not know." He grabbed a clean towel and began gently wiping at my face.

"That didn't fully answer my question." I grumbled, smiling slightly. Tesla only chuckled in reply, before dipping the cloth and attempting to get some of the blood out of my hair. "You're a mysterious type, aren't you?" I sighed, causing him to grin.

"You haven't told me your name yet," he said, drying me off.

"Lyra," I replied.

"Lyra…" he muttered, as if tasting my name. "Well Lyra, it seems you need a change of clothes…"

I watched as he went to the closet and pulled out a long coat like the one he was wearing and brought it over to me. "I'm afraid this is all I have, if you like I can go and get you something else…"

I shook my head, "No, it's fine." I replied, "Thank you."

Again Tesla smiled, before slipping the coat over my head and carefully down my body. Once it was secured, he had me lie back down, while he took off my shoes.

"May I ask you something?" he asked sitting down.

I nodded. "Sure."

"Why is it you decided to attempt to become Nnoitra-sama's fraccion?"

"Well, Starkie-" I coughed trying to cover the fact I almost called Stark his nickname, "Err, Stark didn't need another fraccion, so I needed to find myself a new espada…"

"But why Nnoitra-sama?" asked Tesla, staring at me.

"I had a good feeling about it." I replied, "Uh see, I tend to follow my instincts, and they told me to come here…"

"Oh," he replied. He looked towards his lone window. "Lyra… When you are well enough I suggest you leave this place and find a different espada for you own sake. Next time you come across Nnoitra-sama, I doubt he will be as merciful."

"I know," I sighed, "I should go, but…" I stared at him, "You survived, didn't you? I mean, if you can do it, certainly I can too…"

"You make it sound much easier than it is," he replied. Tesla turned to me and touched his eye patch with his finger, "I did not always wear this."

"Are you saying he did that to you?" I gasped. A confused smile flickered across his face.

"Yes, but is it that surprising? The state you are in should be proof enough."

"Yeah but… An eye seems much more serious."

Tesla stared at me for a good minute before he broke out in laughter. I grinned slightly as I watched him, it was obvious that he didn't laugh or smile very much, and I knew it was because of Nnoitra.

"You…" he chuckled as his laughter subsided, "Are a strange girl, Lyra. You nearly died and yet you think losing an eye is more serious." He laughed a bit more, before wiping the tears from his left eye. "Definitely strange."

"I've heard that before," I replied smiling. "Now, can I ask you a question?"

Tesla nodded, "Go ahead."

"After what he did to you, why stay his fraccion?"

He didn't answer right away, instead pushing his tawny colored hair away from his face.

"Well, it's just… You'll think it silly…" he grumbled.

"Try me."

He stared at me before speaking. "Well, I believe that underneath, Nnoitra-sama is very lonely. He does not know how to treat people and distances himself by being cruel." He smiled slightly. "I don't think that anyone should have to be lonely. That is why I stay…"

"But wouldn't that make you lonely?" I asked, "By trying to help him, wouldn't that distance you from everyone else?"

Tesla didn't answer, and I knew that I had hit the mark with my question.

I gritted my teeth and sat up, surprised at how little my wounds hurt already, all thanks to Tesla. I reached out and put my hand on his arm, causing him to stare at me.

"Then I'll stay too." I replied. His eye widened in shock and I smiled at him. "You shouldn't have to be lonely either."

His other hand moved until it was holding mine in his warm grip. "L-Lyra…I…" he muttered, his expression soft.

If he was going to say something more, he didn't, as I leaned in and pressed my lips against his.