Disclaimer: Bleach is property of Tite Kubo, and Naruto is the property of Masashi Kishimoto. In the real world, this means I'll never have any influence on where these series go. Luckily, there's a wonderful thing called fanfiction...

Cracked Mask

Chapter One: Hollow


The first thing that came to Naruto's mind when he started to regain consciousness was that. Pain. Pain that seemed out of place...it was coming from a place it shouldn't have come from.

He struggled to open an eye. He coughed a few times before finally managing to complete the simple task of gaining vision. He blinked...


Naruto guessed it was at least. Truth was, he didn't know, nor could he feel the temperature. He got up while taking in his surroundings...

"...I'm..." He suddenly found it hard to remember details, "I think...I was fighting someone..."

His vision got better, and he was able to take in what appeared to be a large valley...or crater of sorts...

"I was fighting someone here..."

The colors red and blacked flashed through his mind for a moment before he groaned in pain.

"...Akatsuki...Pain...Konoha...leveled...Sage techniques...killed him..."

Naruto shook his head, and suddenly remembered everything. He was fighting Pain, one of the members of Akatsuki. He had destroyed all six of his bodies...and with a hefty cost...

...his life.

He had managed to escape the clutches of one of the two remaining bodies, and destroyed him with a powerful Rasengan to the skull. He then defeated the one that appeared to be running the show, using a Rasenshuriken that drained too much chakra and too much life force from the boy. It didn't help that the criminal ninja also managed to stab him in the trachea before dying with that concealed blade he had on him...

He looked towards the center of the crater, and took note that his body, along with the bodies of Pain, were still there. He noted several people were surrounding the area. He recognized a few of them...if not by name, then by face...

"Sakura-chan...Baa-chan...Kakashi...sensei..." Naruto was finding the names becoming hazier by the minute. He was surprised that he wasn't less stressed by the fact that he was looking at his own dead, bleeding body. Hell, he was pretty sure he hadn't been expecting to die for another forty years...after making the title of Hokage, leading Konoha to a golden age, and learning all the awesome jutsu possible.

Sakura seemed to be crying. He began walking over to the group, but kept his distance, "Sakura-chan...you don't need to cry..."

Sakura seemed unaware of his presence. He frowned slightly, though for some reason, wasn't surprised that he hadn't been noticed. He walked a bit closer, and stopped when the pink-haired kunoichi raised her head. She sniffled a bit, and turned towards the spot where Naruto was standing. She didn't say anything, and let a few more stifled sobs.

"Sakura...c-come on...we need to tend to the injured..." Tsunade spoke, barely above a whisper. Sakura nodded twice before getting up, and walking off with the Slug Sannin. However, before she was gone, she gave the spot where Naruto was looking a second glance...then she looked to the body.

The blond barely heard her as she spoke, "Naruto...please forgive me..."

Naruto felt like crying...he wanted to...

...but for some reason, the tears never came. He instead settled for a ragged breath, "You never had anything to say sorry for, Sakura-chan..."

Naruto walked away from the broken and battered body, and sighed. It smelled of death in the air...it was suffocating for him...he laughed at the irony of it all.

Several days had passed since the battle between Pain and Naruto. Naruto had taken note that the citizens of Konoha were still going on with their lives...albeit slowly, and with a lot of mourning. Naruto noticed that Sakura had stopped at the Hero's Memorial everyday since he died. He didn't like seeing her like this...but he couldn't do anything about it either.

It hurt him to see her like this. She wasn't smiling and scolding him anymore. She wasn't studying medical jutsu, or training like she used to...

...she wasn't like she used to be...

Naruto fiddled with the chain on his chest a bit more, and sighed. That was another thing...this chain. Where the hell did it come from? He tried tugging on it, and decided against it after feeling immense pain. He decided that being a spirit with a chain on your chest didn't matter when no one could see you.

After a week of mourning, Konoha forced itself to repair and reconstruction...at least...as best as it could. Konoha was a giant crater with some small buildings and a few residences around it now...

He wanted to get away...and maybe forget about how much he wanted to be in Konoha...he was miserable..and he was pretty sure there was a saying about misery and company...he couldn't remember at the moment, but he knew it may as well apply to him...

One month...

One month, and he was starting to feel weak. He felt like that chain of his was constantly being pulled on...

His thoughts drifted to Konoha, which was just over a few hills from where he was in the deep woods.


He remembered how he had felt happy...like he belonged...now what? His life was just one where he was by himself. Hell, he couldn't even haunt anyone!

He felt anger. Anger towards Akatsuki for stripping him of his life, and for denying him his happiness.


Happiness...he faked that emotion a lot.

Was he ever really that happy? Maybe...yeah, he knew when he became a Genin, and when he was with his few friends he made, he was happy...but now what? They couldn't see him, hear him, nothing!

Clink. Clink.

"I'm alone..." Naruto spoke, feeling the weight of every word hit him...


Naruto looked to see the chain on his chest beginning to break apart. No...wait...it was...

"What the-?"

The chain...it had teeth on it? It was...eating itself!

Naruto didn't like this. He felt a huge weight bare down on him. He struggled to remain standing, but fell to his knees.

"What...what's going on? This pain...! It...it feels like I'm being bitten and torn apart...!"

As the last few links of the chain corroded away, Naruto let a few of his memories flash by. Konoha...Iruka and the Academy...Sakura, Sasuke, and Kakashi-sensei...his training with Ero-sennin...Baa-chan...


The hole on his chest became fully opened as the chain disappeared. His eyes dilated, and he coughed, "Gah...what the hell...I...I can't...breath...!"

His vision went black as material seemed to fly out of his mouth. He saw white, and the last thing he remembered hearing was his voice...or what he thought was his.

He never knew he could roar like that...


Naruto felt something cool and smooth run through his hands as he moved them about. His eyes were closed, but he felt what appeared to be sand in between his fingers.

Opening one eye, he groaned. What happened? It was night already? Standing up, he took a look around...and then fell onto his two arms after finding it hard to stand.

"What happened?" Naruto thought. He looked down at his hands...only to see two sets of paw-like hands with razor claws. He gasped before running one of his newly formed hands over his face.

It felt...hard...and not right. He looked at his feet to see similar claws on pawed-feet. His whole body was covered in ruby-red like fur. Right over the upper left area of his chest was a gaping hole...that went all the way through his body!

Panic set in. This isn't right. He shouldn't be like this...he had a body...with two arms, two legs, a face of skin, and...holy crap, was that a tail waving behind him?

He sat on his haunches and thought, "Something is not right...maybe this is a Genjutsu! Yeah!"

Naruto held his paws together, and focused his chakra. He opened his eyes, and was dismayed to see no difference, "...okay...calm down...you're probably having a nightmare..."

Naruto hadn't slept at all since he died...

He began pacing around as he thought. Maybe he...was reincarnated? Into a beast? Why? He was pretty sure he lead a decent life...was this punishment?

He was so worked up over his dilemma he never noticed three giant shadows looming over him. Only after he caught the smell of rank breath did he turn his head, and freeze in place.

"Heh...look at this, fellas. A fresh Hollow, not even an hour old..."

"Must be our lucky day!"

Naruto's instincts kicked in as he leaped out of the way of not claws, but hands...and ten of them. He growled before jumping back with amazing expertise as a massive foot tried to stomp him flat, "Who the hell are you?"

One of the massive beasts with a white mask replied, "You really are a greenhorn if you're asking such a question," the beast laughed a bit before continuing, "You're in Hueco Mundo, small fry, and soon you'll be in my stomach!"

"Like hell I will!" Naruto replied. He dodged another massive claw, and instead of evading, he did something that shocked him even.

He bit it.

"GAAAAH! Damn it! He bit my arm!"

Fresh blood dribbled down his chin, and Naruto was suddenly aware of something...

...he was hungry...

...and that beast seemed tasty at the moment.

Naruto licked his lips, and he was pretty sure a sneer formed on his face, "I'll eat you instead!"

Naruto leaped at the massive beast, and tore into it's throat. It howled in pain before falling over as Naruto ripped a chunk of meat out of the neck. He chewed a few times before swallowing, and looked hungrily at the other two.

One thought crossed Naruto's mind...


Naruto stared at the massive puddle of blood that formed in the open, anguished mouth of one of the Hollows he had killed. He found himself gaining more power as he digested their flesh...and some knowledge as well...

He was a Hollow...and a rather young one too. He had the equivalent of seventy-three souls in him right now from all three combined. Staring into the puddle of blood that formed in the fallen beast's mouth, he could see his own mask.

It was...canine in appearance. The lips of his mask were lined in red, going all the way to the backs of his jawbones. His ears were covered in a plate of white bone-like material, giving him the usual pointed ears of a wolf...or a fox.

His eyes were a golden color. His nostrils were decorated with an intricate crimson hue as well, like a war paint of sorts. He hated his appearance...yet loved it at the same time.

Another thought crossed his mind. If he wanted to survive...he had to eat...

Hollows eat souls...many eat human souls...

Hollows once were humans...but now they became twisted by anger, hate, jealousy, and other emotions that were bad.

"I don't want to eat humans...they're innocent..."

Naruto knew that wasn't entirely true. Humans were sinful...but not as bad as Hollows in this wasteland were...

"I'll gain power...and devour others like me..."

Naruto knew right away this choice would be the more dangerous of the two...but he'd be damned before he became a murderer of the living. If he was going to kill, then he'd kill those that had no regret in spilling mortal blood.

It was...the lesser of two evils, Naruto reasoned.

Several decades had passed for Naruto since he started his personal war against the Hollows of Hueco Mundo. He had quickly jumped up the ranks...and his appetite had only grew with the power he obtained.

He had for at least a decade and a half been a Gillian...and those were some of the most difficult years for him since he had arrived. He remembered most of the time being on the brink of falling into his own mass of power, and giving in to the hundreds of other warring souls within his body.

Eventually though, he surpassed the other Gillian...and escaped from that hell of wandering on the brink of oblivion, and be swallowed up by the other souls inside of him.

Then he did something that forever changed him. He was wandering in the deeper parts of Hueco Mundo and came across a group of more powerful Hollows...Adjuchas. They didn't notice him right away, since they were actually feasting on some lesser Hollows.

Naruto didn't know why...but he decided to attack. That initially had ticked them off, but his heightened battle senses hadn't dulled ever since his death. If anything...they improved.

After managing—much to the surprise of the Adjuchas—to kill one of them, the others stopped attacking. Naruto felt the power flow through him as he devoured the mask of the serpentine-like Hollow.

"H-he...he killed Di Roy?" spoke one of the other Adjuchas, who seemed to resemble a bull of sorts.

"..." Naruto stared at the group, and noted that he wasn't the only Gillian. There was another amongst them...and like the former shinobi, this Gillian too had a unique mask. Naruto's mask was similar of the one he had as a mere Hollow, a Menos. The mask had a fox like snout, void of coloring, serrated teeth, large, dark eye sockets void of eyes, and two ear-like projections at the top.

He knew that he'd have to run if he planned on surviving. He still hadn't finished absorbing the power from that one Adjuchas though. He could feel his power growing already, but...these Hollows were still in a whole other league compared to him.

The Adjuchas seemed ready to pounce. Naruto prepared to move. He had learned a long time ago that he moved much faster than the average Menos Grande. He guessed it had something to do with his spiritual power...yeah, that's what he learned after evolving into this form. Most were sluggish, and far from intelligent...usually, anyway. Naruto was an exception...and so was that other one.

Naruto moved back, and prepared to retreat when one of the Adjuchas spoke, "Stop."

Naruto raised an eyebrow...or would have if he had any, as the Adjuchas parted, and a rather small Adjuchas walked out, "You...you're different from the other Menos Grande..." It wasn't a question, it was a statement. Naruto noted that this one looked like a large cat...like a lion..or something, but no shaggy mane, "You have a name, Gillian?"

Naruto wondered why this greater Hollow was asking him a question. Gillian didn't speak...even if they had their own personality.

"...I see you haven't fully absorbed Di Roy yet..." the cat-like beast gave something akin to a grin, "Finish eating him..."

In his previous life, Naruto would have probably been suspicious of the beast...but he wasn't a human...not anymore. Naruto didn't wait to be asked twice before tearing another chunk out of the dying Hollow, and felt the power continue to rush through him. His first Adjuchas...so much more power than that of any Menos...

Naruto let out a growl as he devoured the remnants of the giant, snake-like monster's mask. He noted that a chunk of the mask was already gone...

"I gave Di Roy that...he was foolish enough to try and eat me...the moron...now he got killed by a Hollow that would supposedly be weaker than him." The Adjuchas continued, "...I can tell just by looking at you...you're out for more power..."

Naruto raised his head, a bit of green blood dripping down his chin. He snorted for a moment before continuing. The other Hollow laughed.

"I'm Grimmjow...the leader of this group." He paused as Naruto inhaled more, "...you should join us."

Naruto paused in the midst of chewing, and looked straight into Grimmjow's eyes. They were blue...just like his had been.

Naruto stopped chewing suddenly as he felt his body flooding with the power he had stolen from this Di Roy figure. Grimmjow smiled, "Ah...so you were close to changing after all..."

Naruot let out a howl as his body began glowing. The air became saturated in a tainted aura as the other Hollows backed away, all except Grimmjow. He sat there, and watched the phenomena unfold.

Naruto's body began glowing a deep, dark red, like that of blood, and his gigantic body began to shrink. He felt his gaunt frame began to bulk...and reconfigure. He grew limbs...and claws...

"Raaaaaaaggggh!" Naruto howled as the night sky seemed to reverberate his voice. A blast of reiatsu came down upon the others, and Grimmjow actually looked a bit surprised.

"...this one...he's definitely stronger than a normal Hollow..."

As the howling and spiritual pressure ceased, the dust began to clear. Grimmjow watched as the clouds parted...and he grinned.

There stood Naruto...new and reformed. He was similar to his first form. He had a mask that was void of any real color, aside from a red ring around each eye. His mask had become more defined...resembling more of a fox's head. However, the bottom half of his mouth remained uncovered, remaining a red color like his body. Large, razor-sharp teeth lined his mouth. He noted another thing...he had three tails waving behind him instead of the original one years and years ago. His overall form was more sleek and limber than when he had first entered Hueco Mundo.

His forelegs and shoulders were covered in white armor, jagged spikes jutting out of the joints. His backlegs were covered at the knees in armor as well. His upper back was armored with plating, small spikes jutting out where this vertebrae were, giving him a truly monstrous appearance. He also noticed he was slightly larger than before. Aside from this though...the major change was his power...

...it was on a whole other level than that of his previous form. No Gillian would be able to stand up against him now...

"Huh...you've got a lot of power there..." Grimmjow spoke, walking over to Naruto. The fox-like Adjuchas tensed, and bared his fangs. He wasn't sure if this Grimmjow was to be trusted. As a rule of thumb, you didn't trust anyone in Hueco Mundo...

One of the other Adjuchas spoke. This one was tall, and stood on two legs, with slender, incisor like fingers, and a bar-like mask covering his face in darkness, "Grimmjow...should he still join us?"

Grimmjow turned to look at the Hollow, and then back to Naruto, "Don't be stupid, Shawlong, of course."

Naruto watched as the feline-like Hollow circled him. It seemed to be studying him, looking at him from all angles, assessing him.

"So...you want to join us?"

Naruto thought this over. He could go on his own...and risk being attacked by more powerful Adjuchas...and die...or stick with this group...even for a short time, and have a better chance at growing stronger. Besides...if he didn't keep feeding...well...he'd regress, and be screwed for the rest of his existence.

Naruto nodded once, and Grimmjow gave him a toothy grin that was more like a sneer, "Good choice. You have a name?"

The fox-Hollow blinked, it's blue irises reflecting the light from the moon as it spoke for the first time in ages, "My name...is Naruto."

Ages past for Naruto and his group of Hollows. In that time, he ate close to three thousand Hollows, or maybe a bit less.

However...he felt his powers continue to grow...much like Grimmjow did. The others didn't though.

"Grimmjow...we've given up this feeding on Hollows..."

Grimmjow, along with Naruto, both looked up as Shawlong spoke, "What did you say?"

Shawlong elaborated, "We haven't felt any increase in power for ages, yet you and Naruto continue to grow stronger...it's pointless for us to continue. We've come to terms with the fact that we're stuck where we are in terms of power."

"...but Shawlong...you can't be serious. You were the ones who helped me reach where I am now!"

Grimmjow looked to Naruto, "Forget it, Naruto...they want to give up, fine. You and I will just go on without them."

Naruto tilted his head in thought, "...Grimmjow, are you serious?"

Grimmjow narrowed his eyes, "It's either that, or we go back to Gillian...for good."

Naruto looked away, "...no way..." Naruto would rather be devoured than become swallowed up by his own power...

"Grimmjow...Naruto...if you're going to leave..." Shawlong began, "At least eat part of us first. We're doomed to stay at the level we're at...eat us, and you'll gain some of our power, and halt our evolution for certain."

Naruto shook his head, "Shawlong, I...I can't-"

Grimmjow growled, "Damn it, Naruto! Don't you get it? We need to eat in order to continue existing as Adjuchas! Stop, and we're done for."

Naruto let out a barking laugh, "Eating is the only reason I exist, it seems."

Grimmjow grunted, "You don't seem to mind though."

Naruto looked up again to the jaguar-Hollow, "...don't read into it, Grimmjow."

"Then quit your griping. Either eat, or wither away. I don't care, to be honest."

Naruto, along with Grimmjow, ate portions of their Hollow comrades, and all the while Naruto reminded himself that this was for the best. He'd grow stronger...and his...comrades...would not revert back to Gillian.

As Naruto let the green liquid run down his chin, he let out a satisfied growl. No matter how much he hated to admit it...he enjoyed eating other Hollows.

Later on, he and Grimmjow were walking ahead of the group. They were going at a leisurely pace, having found some time to rest for once.


"What's up, Grimmjow?"

Grimmjow looked up to the eternal crescent moon, and spoke, "You and I...we're different from the others..."

"Well, yeah. You and I are still getting stronger."

"No, idiot, not just that." Grimmjow snapped with a snort, "You and I...we continue to search for power...even if it seems impossible." He turned to his fellow quadrupedal Hollow, and bared his teeth, "You better not give up, Naruto. You're the only one who I can compare myself to now."

"Compare yourself...? What...Grimmjow, you're way stronger than me."

Grimmjow shook his head, "Maybe a decade or two ago, yeah. You've grown stronger quickly, though. We're clearly destined to be greater than the others."

Naruto found himself starting to agree with Grimmjow. He was a bit surprised though; Grimmjow was far from an supportive individual, in any case. He supposed it was because Grimmjow could relate to the younger Hollow. Naruto was probably close to one hundred fifty years in age, he wasn't sure how old Grimmjow was. He knew he was older though, since Grimmjow just seemed to carry that aura that older Hollows had.

Naruto was quiet for a moment before he spoke, "What are you saying, Grimmjow? You plan on eating me, too?"

Grimmjow actually laughed, "As much as I know I'd gain power from you if I did, I don't think I would..."

Naruto gave a fanged smirk, "Really?"

"No. You don't deserve that kind of end right now..." He gave Naruto a critical look before facing forward again, "Don't let it go to your head though...you're still an idiot."

Naruto just chuckled. Grimmjow had more or less stated in his own rude way that he had some respect for the fox-Hollow. Naruto decided that for the rest of his days as an Adjuchas, he'd follow Grimmjow. No matter what the costs...

"Rise up, my brother..."

Naruto stood up, wobbling only a moment as he adjusted to being bipedal again. He stood straight, blond hair and striking blue eyes piercing the haze of smoke created from the sudden explosion of power that had awakened within him.

The man before him smiled calmly, "Tell me, my friend...what is your name?"

Naruto looked around, and was surprised to see a man standing in the back with strikingly familiar blue eyes. He had equally blue hair, and a portion of his mask was left on his face, a jaw on his right side. He wore a white jacket with a open collar, and an inner black lining, sleeves rolled up. The hakama pants were also white, and held up by a black sash. He gave Naruto a brief glance before nodding.

Naruto knew right away that his old comrade was that man. He grinned, before speaking to the man who he had learned was named Sousuke Aizen, "Naruto Uzumaki!"

Aizen raised an eyebrow while maintaining his smile, "You're a rather lively one. Welcome...Naruto."

Naruto nodded twice before realizing he was completely nude, "Um...do I get a set of clothes?"

Fifteen minutes later found Naruto with a similar style vest like Grimmjow's jacket. It was left open, and had torn-off sleeves. His hakama pants were similar as well, though obviously shorter in length. The finishing touch were a pair of sandals, which he was still getting used to...he'd been on four legs for ages, after all...

"I'm going to become one of the Espada..."

Naruto looked to the older Arrancar, "...really? Heh, no surprise, I guess!"

Grimmjow looked at the blond. Naruto's mask fragments were evident when looking at the teenage-looking Arrancar. It made a half-circle around his right eye, while a bottom portion rested on his upper right lip, with a few short, teeth. It continued towards his right ear, covering the back of it, and ending at a point...much like his former mask did, though obviously much smaller. Aside from this, he had red rings around both eyes.

The blue-haired Arrancar rolled his eyes, "You smile at that even...figures."

Naruto gave Grimmjow a flat look, "You haven't changed a bit."

"That's my line."

Naruto laughed as he looked out to the white dunes of Las Noches palace. He smirked, "Heh...it's been forever since I've seen a blue sky."


"What's up, Grimmjow?"

"Moron..." Grimmjow groaned. Naruto was good at reading the man...the same went for Grimmjow with the blond though too, "...I'm taking Shawlong, Edorad, Ylfordt, and Nakim as my Fraccion."

"What about-?"


"Hey, come on! I can help you! That's not fair!"

Grimmjow, instead of telling the younger Arrancar to quiet down, decked him in the jaw. Naruto flew into a wall, and made a decent indentation of his body as he fell, "Shut it, Naruto!"

Naruto groaned as he got up, and noted Grimmjow was holding the handle of his newly-made sword. Naruto himself had a zanpakutou as well, though Naruto noted that his was slightly larger compared to the blue-haired Arrancar, "What the hell, Grimmjow?"

Grimmjow walked over to the blond, and hefted him up by the collar of his vest, "I don't want you being my Fraccion! I thought you were smarter than that!" Naruto's eyes widened as he felt a powerful reiatsu weigh down on him, "I thought we went over this! You don't give up! I don't give up!"

Naruto blinked twice before he understood, "...right...power..."

"Damn straight! You're not going to serve under me! I won't allow it! Go and get power your own way!"

It was only through being by Grimmjow's side for so long that he understood Grimmjow so well; Grimmjow didn't want Naruto underneath his command. He wanted Naruto to achieve power on his own, through someone else if anyone...not through him.

Naruto was let go, and the blond was glad to see Grimmjow's reiatsu dwindle down, "So...how you going to become an Espada?"

"How else? Earn it!"

"Right...I'm not sure what I'll do, but I'll prove myself here too..." Naruto said with finality.

"Good...otherwise I'll destroy you." Grimmjow gave the blond a sadistic grin. Naruto thought it suited him well.

"You wish to join the Espada?"

Naruto stood up from his one knee position, "Well...I wish to at least be part of the forces, Aizen-sama."

Aizen rubbed his chin in thought, "I suppose I could see if any of the Espada are willing to take you under their command..." He gave Naruto a calming smile, "I'll send them to you when I find someone who wishes to take you in. Otherwise, I can always find some other task for you as well."

Naruto bowed, "Thanks, Aizen-sama!"

"You're quite welcome, Naruto."

Later on, after his brief talk with Aizen, Naruto was standing on top of one of the many large buildings of Las Noches palace's interior. He had his hands stuffed in his pockets, and was enjoying the calm breeze that seemed to be blowing through.

"Are you Naruto Uzumaki?"

Naruto turned around, hand on his blade's hilt. There before him stood an Arrancar, and a woman too. Naruto's first thought were that she was beautiful...a rare feature in Hollows of any class or level. She had long hair that blew in the wind, a light-green color to it. He could help but give her body a once-over, and noted that she was both lithe and well-shaped.

Looking up to her light brown eyes, which reflected her calm demeanor, he noted a red mark that ran across her face, horizontally over her nose and under her eyes, which he assumed was a natural mark she attained when she became an Arrancar. Her mask rested on top of her head. It was a skull with curved horns, and stood out from her otherwise quite human appearance.

"Yeah, I'm Naruto Uzumaki."

The woman remained standing calmly, "I am Neliel Tu Oderschvank, one of the Espada. I have been offered to take you as one of my Fraccion by Aizen-sama."

Naruto's eyes lit up, "Really? Wow...Aizen sure doesn't waste his time..."

"So...will you accept?"

Naruto tapped his chin for a moment, and grinned, "You bet, Neliel-sama!" He decided that the woman seemed to hold an air of respect about her, and that honorifics would be best with her right now.

"Nel-sama is fine."

Naruto nodded with a somewhat surprised look, "Er...right. Um..." he paused for a moment, "Neli...Nel-sama?"

Nel turned to face him, and gave him an inquisitive look, "Yes?"

"Not that it matters much to me...but what is your rank in the Espada?"

Nel was quiet for a moment, and turned around to begin walking. Naruto feared he may have upset before she stopped, and spoke, "I am the Tercera..."

Naruto's jaw went a little slack, but he closed it as she turned to face him, "Y-you're the Tercera? I...I wasn't-"

"Expecting someone of my ranking to take you?"

Naruto blinked, and had the decency to look embarrassed, "Yeah."

"That's understandable...though you'll come to see that I'm not like some of the other Espada..." She turned around again, "...now, if you'll follow me, I am going to show you to your new quarters."

Naruto gave a nod before following her. Something told him that there was more to this woman that met the eye. He wasn't sure what...but he was curious enough to make a mental note to find out.

End of Chapter One: Yeah, that's right, I made ANOTHER Bleach/Naruto crossover, this time Naruto's a Hollow! Whattya gonna do? Yell at me? Heh, anyway, this was another idea that had been bugging me (since I did Seireitei no Jinchuuriki). As for plot, it's going to differentiate from Seireitei in a few ways, as well as the two canon series. If you like this, then I'm glad. Let me know what you think. Thanks for reading!