A/N: It's a futurefic.

Because I love my dream Kurosaki family.
Because I love tulips and Rukia.
Because my post-it pad was literally glowing in all its neon green glory.
And because Rukia's birthday is a day before mine.

Belated, my favorite Kuchiki!


Post-its and Tulips

She didn't feel the familiar warmth of the presence that always used to be beside her every morning. That was why Rukia sat up in the bed abruptly, rubbing sleep out of her eyes, looking around the room for any signs of her companion - only to see no one.

The shinigami glanced at the clock and mentally cringed. 7:35? Late.

'I wonder why Ichigo didn't wake me up, though. I overslept!'

But beside the desk clock that signalled her oversleeping, the caught sight of the calendar that told her what date it is that day.

January 14.

She smiled softly.

Maybe this was why the house was so quiet - the kids and Ichigo had done her a favor of a peaceful, sleepy morning that gave her the privilege to sleep past a mother's required hour.

The woman leisurely made her way downstairs. The house was obviously empty and a bit cold for only one person to stay in, but warmth radiated from every corner. The little picture frames, the occassional medals, the bunny collection, the tiny trinkets here and there reminded her of a different, happy story that made her smile everytime.

'That little piggy bank has been Ryu's since he was five -- he never got to fill it up. The hand-made bunny picture frame was by Iki... I remember him spilling glue on Ichigo's pants. And that karate tournament medal is Hisana's - makes me proud every time. Then... that was Ichigo's first stethoscope - broken when he and Uryuu had a fist-fight in the hospital.'

She laughed softly to herself as she remembered the little vignettes of her family. Now that it's her birthday and they will all probably be out all day, she felt a little lonely.

'Maybe I could go over Orihime's or Tatsuki's - or maybe visit nii-sama.'

She stopped her musings when she reached the dining table.

The table was set for one - a special, mouth-watering meal. It was still hot and it looked awfully delicious. Rukia could totally guess who prepared it.

She gently took the pure white tulip that was laid on her plate, relished it with her own smile, and finally decided to read the note on the sky blue post-it attached to its stem.

[ Mom: Couldn't stay 'till nine like the usual.
Got an early shift for my part-time job today.
Happy Birthday. -- Ryu.

Rukia eyed her favorite dishes and back at the note once again. It looks like her dear 18-year old overdid himself this time. The meal looked extra appetizing.

She trudged towards the kitchen, direct to the cupboard where she always got a can of her Chappy morning candies, and was surprised to find the supposed-to-be almost empty cabinet loaded with their usual groceries.

A post-it note, now in pink, was stuck to her candy jar, along with a bright pink tulip.

'My, they really know my favorite flower.'

[ Mommy! Happy Birthday!
I woke up extra early to fetch all the groceries! XD
Love ya lotz ~ Sana-chan.

Rukia laughed lightly. Extra early for Hisana? That would most likely mean that the girl woke up 5 seconds early and scrambled out of bed, leaving a messed-up, plushie-infested heap in her room. She could totally imagine her youngest child (and only girl at that) struggling to beat her time record and going as far as to use shun-po to get to the grocery store, stufing everything she thinks would fit the budget.

She cringed inwardly at the considerably high population of cheese-flavored potato chips in the cupboard, but she decided that she'll forgive Sana-chan for the meantime.

Rukia smiled while chewing her candy as she laughingly visualized the scene earlier this morning.

Knowing Ryu and Hisana, the raven-heads must have been insulting each other while the pre-teen sat on her brother's shoulders, fixing the groceries - while said brother was cooking like the master chef he was.

With another laugh, Rukia checked the fridge for her milk. Before she got to open it, though - another post-it was posted in the fridge-door, peach in color, along with a bright yellow tulip.

[ Mom... Uh, I fixed the fridge? I think.
I also managed to fix your favorite bunny slippers - sorry it went missing for the week.
And sorry I wasn't able to find the right shade of pink.
I love you! Happy Birthday.. ---- Iki.

By the nearby bathroom door, Rukia noticed her recently-gone-missing pink Chappy fluffy slippers. She picked them up and noted the clumsy and oh-so-obvious stitches that were two shades darker than the original color of the slippers. Her fingers strayed over them and finally, she decided to wear them - concluding that they were steady enough. A smile plastered on her face, she collected her flowers, picked up her milk can from the now-neat fridge and made her way back the dining table.

'I wonder what Ichigo got for me...-'

Before she can take her first bite, a noise startled her.


Rukia's eyes travelled across the table and towards the wall. At the scene, her grin reached her ears.

'I wonder how in hell I missed this one.'

There, in the center of the wall, just beside a family portrait, was Kon. Mouth taped shut and body seemingly stuck to the wall via a duct tape, the mod-soul struggled and squirmed and tried to speak up properly.

Poked on one side of the living plushie was a single, blood-red tulip and attached nearby was a white post-it.

[ Oi, sleeping shorty.
I've decided to shut the little guy up for you.
- Have a nice, quiet, noise-unpolluted day.

-- Ichigo.

P.S. Ryu cleaned the whole place because he's a freak.
Iki started the laundry because he's paranoid.
Hisana watered your flowers because she's a good girl.
I... uh, I taped Kon to the ceiling because the kids did everything else.

"Mmffnghh! MMMMFFFGGHHHH!!!"

Rukia laughed. "Sorry, Kon. I don't want to ruin my husband's birthday gift for me."