Authors Note: This contains the intro & first chapter. I decided not to do them seperatly like my other story, because then it seems too short. ALSO please note, SPOILERS may, or may not be present in this story. I will try to refrain from anything too major, the most I will do is put Ulquiorra's number in here (so, if you don't want to know… let me know xD Im not putting it in this chapter, and I will refrain from using it in the future if someone doesn't know/ doesn't want to know.) Spoilers really bother me so I don't want to ruin anything for anyone else.
Also, the pairings in this is mostly Kisuke/Yoruichi and Yoruichi/Ulquiorra. Yes, Yoruichi/Ulquiorra is my new pairing that I enjoy working with, so they will be the primary. One of the base stories within this is her struggle between Kisuke and Ulquiorra. Anyway… (I will usually make notes at the end of chapters, so I will add more later) Enjoy!
Bleach (c) Tite Kubo
Life moves in one direction for so long, that a sudden change can be a large one. Life is never a smooth ride, and the smallest of events can create the largest of turns.
Long strands of her dark amethyst hair hung in her face casually. She opened her golden eyes when familiar fingers brushed them away, and a smile teased the edges of her lips as she glanced up at the familiar, always happy expression of Kisuke Urahara. She knew him since they were young, and always recognized him as her closest relationship. They both showed it like love, which was clear to those around them, but it was deeper than that sometimes. They had an unusual way of reading each other; there was no way for them to get by without the other knowing what was playing in their mind.
"Good results, I take it?" she said lightly, still waking up from her thoughtful gazing that he had smoothly interrupted.
"Of course," he said confidently, "Now I just need to see if it actually works. Problem is, they don't come on command."
"No, but they're sure to show up soon," she sat up to meet face to face with him, "What if it doesn't work?"
"If it doesn't work, than it'll need to be fixed."
"What if it doesn't have results like we hope for it to?" she questioned with an unusual concern.
"It's not going to do anything we'll need to worry about. If we're lucky it'll fix them, or kill them," he always sounded like he was at ease, despite all the risks that were running through her mind.
"I suppose. If it works, there's no guarantee it'll help Ichigo either, though."
"Nah. Arrancar and Vizards have a different make-up, but it'll let me know we're getting close."
"He's gaining control. Is it really necessary to dig into things like this?" She was leaning against the wall, staring at him with unease. It was apparent to him that she was looking for an easier, logical way out of it.
"Our Ichigo is always pushing himself to hold it in, I'm sure he'd appreciate it if he didn't have to worry about that hollow in him."
"Of course. I don't agree with it being part of him either, but you did cause it."
"Don't worry Yoruichi, I have things under control. As soon as we have another invasion, we'll test it out, if it fails on a trial test, I guess I will let it go," he stared at her face trying to see beyond the determination in her eyes, "Do you not trust me?"
"Of course I do. How're we going to give it to them though?" Her eyes stopped wavering at his accusation of false trust. She turned stern, and serious, trying to hide the discomfort the whole idea gave her. There was more to it than just experimenting; side effects if it did show positive results at first, were her main worry.
"I'll distract, you run behind and give them the injection. It should only take a couple of minutes for it to show results, if it's working properly."
"All right. As soon as we're given notice of them, I guess we'll test it," she concluded with a sigh. There was no way around it; if he thought it was going to work, she would certainly have to trust him, she always did.
He smiled smugly at her, and brushed the hair back out of her face that had fallen down again when she had sat up, and replied, "We'll wait until then." He brushed past her, and she could tell he was completely confident in his judgment, and in his new 'medicine'. She had to believe in him.
This new formula was designed specifically for Arrancar for now, until he knew he was on the right path. While it was claimed that they lost their souls, they had a different opinion. It was believed from some that their soul was simply locked away in another part of them, behind their feral intentions of gaining power, and nothing more. It was believed by some that there was still a soul, and that they simply consumed it within the darkness of their new lives. His formula was designed to break down the darkness, and let out the humanity within them, to put it in simple terms. It was all based off suspicion that they still had this supposed soul within them, but she wanted to believe it would work. If it worked on an Arrancar, they could easily change it up enough to have it kill off the darkness within Ichigo, as well. That was the main goal here. Then the other wondering was, what do they do with the Arrancar they have changed back? They wouldn't be worth killing anymore; it would be unfair to kill them when they finally had their sanity back. She planned to house them until it was found out if the results were permanent or not. Housing them along with this experiment, of course, were more laws of the Soul Society they were breaking. She was least concerned with the Soul Society and their rash laws. The main thing on her mind for the next few days was whether this would work. As well as the concern of who would be living with them if it did indeed succeed.
The time finally came. She felt it in the air the second their presence arrived. Her eyes snapped open to the darkness surrounding her. She hadn't been sleeping well lately, and the spiritual pressure easily woke her from her light resting. She sat up and threw her hair up in a tie, allowing the random shorter pieces to fall around her face in a messy haphazard fashion.
She was already dressed for combat, because she had a feeling that tonight would be the night. She sensed that it was about time for their return, and didn't want to take a chance on risking getting there late. She quickly joined up with Urahara in the main living space of his 'shop'. He had a grin lining his lips when he saw her enter the room.
"Are you ready, Yoruichi?"
"Of course," she replied tentatively.
He nodded to her, and they both took off in quick steps towards their project. He had handed her the 'medicine' before they took off, and she was grasping an unknown future in her hands now. She held onto it with uncertainty, focusing on their pressures, but at the same time wondering what the results were going to be. She stopped instantly when she noticed him standing there. She and Kisuke made quick eye contact before going into action with their plans. She recognized him from a previous attack not so long ago when he had another Arrancar accompanying him. He was strong; if this managed to work on him, it should work on anyone.
Urahara made a surprise move on him from the left, while she remained hidden to the right, waiting for the perfect opportunity to get her to him while he wasn't paying attention. The red bursts from Benehime shattered the night air with a graceful light. It was an attack that would change all of their lives tonight, as it provided her the perfect opportunity to sneak in behind with one quick motion. She forced the injection into his arm while he was blocking Kisuke's attack. It went in with relative ease, but he swung around quickly and managed to knock her back with an effortless swipe. It was too late, however. Destiny had been made.
The fierce cyan eyes shifted from his attackers to his arm, where he instantly gripped it in a vulnerable notion.
He said nothing. She remembered him being quiet before, as he only managed to say a few effortless words before they ran off. She didn't remember him making actions like the one he was doing. Gripping his arm in an effort to stop pain, she was assuming. That was very uncharacteristic; normally even someone like her who valued life would have brushed off pain and continued with the fight, especially when being surrounded by two enemies. The fierceness in his eyes was the first thing to change, and she noticed this with instant curiosity. They softened to a warm mixture of innocence and confusion. His breathing was increasing rapidly, and his arm was tensed, with the other still grasping hold of the injection sight. He appeared to be holding onto his arm too tightly, too rashly. She wanted to move in and tell him to ease up, as he was obviously hurting himself. When she took a step in his direction however, Kisuke gave her a look of warning. She stopped pursuing him and continued to watch. Whatever it was formulated to do, it was certainly affecting him. His eyes so far were all that suggested something was happening, though now they were blank rather than the warmness she had seen moments ago.
It hurt her to stand by and watch as someone suffered like that; despite his history in all of this trouble Aizen was causing. His eyes were now closed, though he was no longer holding himself up. His legs had given out on him, and he was bent over on the ground, still grasping his arm too tightly, his body shuddering in an unusual display. His body quivered harshly for what seemed like a long moment, before it wore on him enough. Everything stopped suddenly. Her alert eyes caught onto his passing out as soon as it happened, and she was to his side in a flash…
Chapter One: A Broken Soul
Some memories were meant to be forgotten…
His eyes fluttered open to an unusual scenery. His head was pounding and the room was instantly spinning when he tried to shift his way to sitting. He fell down to the floor and held his hand to his temple, squeezing his eyes closed in pain. What the hell is going on? He grasped his face as the intensity of the pain filled in behind his eyes with a heavy pressure.
"You're awake I see," her voice startled him. A kid? He had expected to be alone, he wasn't used to company… was he? He wasn't certain what he should have been experiencing, something felt off.
"Headache? I'll be sure to check that as a symptom," another young voice chimed in with an arrogant air to it, like this was amusing to him.
He sat up now, trying to ignore the pain behind his eyes so he could see who was evaluating him. And what was the need for checking off symptoms? What symptoms?
"Rise and shine Mr. Dark and gloomy," the kids red hair caught his eyes first, then the smug look that matched his voice. He looked amused with him. That annoyed him quickly. How was his pain so amusing to this brat?
"Where am I?" he asked, his stone cold voice reacting differently in the atmosphere than the kids' voices had. It seemed like it didn't belong. Once again, he had an odd feeling creeping in behind the headache, so it was pushed aside as he waited for answers.
"This is Mr. Urahara's shop, he pretty much saved you," the kid replied, tossing a pad of paper back and forth, "I guess I should go inform him that you're up," he added with a sigh.
None of this made sense to him. He didn't know who the kid was referring to, and he certainly didn't recognize where he was, or who either of them were. Moments later after the two kids walked out of the room, a woman walked through the door carrying a glass of water. Her hair was tied up in an athletic style, sporting her golden eyes and dark skin with a frame of messy hair that couldn't quite fit with the rest in the back. She looked at him with slight concern, then smiled lightly.
"Here, this might clear your head," she handed him the glass, then stepped back and folded her arms across her chest.
He didn't recognize her either, but the water was refreshing on his dry throat. Throat. He quickly peered down at his neck, peeling the clothes away from the spot where there should have been a hole, signifying he was an Arrancar. Suddenly memories washed into his mind of what he should have been doing. Killing. Destroying. He noticed only a faint scar where it should have been, and his eyes shot up to meet her amused, caring eyes.
"It disappeared, or healed up. We're not sure exactly how it happened; we weren't watching you as closely as we should have been last night."
He said nothing, and continued waiting for more of an explanation. He felt different, like he was missing something important, besides the fact that he should have been a different creature all together.
"Does anything come to mind right now?" She ignored his questioning eyes, knowing that she needed to get an evaluation before pursuing in comforting him.
"No… barely," he replied shyly, his voice just above a whisper as he tried to give her a more appropriate answer, and dig through his thoughts.
"Amnesia?" she asked, though it wasn't to him. A man was standing behind her now, he seemed to have formed out of nowhere while he was trying to dig for an answer. He wore an odd arrangement of clothes, the hat and clogs being the standout objects, along with the shady appearance of his eyes.
"Perhaps. Do you remember your name, or anything?" he asked solemnly.
He thought for a moment, and the name came to his mind quickly, along with another rush of memories he wished would have remained hidden. Blood, death, havoc. All by his hands. All by his cold heart. He didn't know that they were actual memories, or if they had just been a nightmare, or some awful plan he had been wanting to pursue, or had been thinking up somewhere in his empty past. His face went blank as he drifted off into the cold mind that used to have complete control of his life. The cold mind that was selfish, wanting nothing more than to gain power, and move himself up in the world, no matter the cost. Then the grim smile of someone he couldn't quite place a name on was in much of the memories. His hair slicked back, his eyes holding an evil gleam that made his mind want to shut down and fall back into confusion. Anything was better than remembering whatever nightmare he had been living with. He couldn't remember anything else about himself, only the darkness he had been trapped in for a time he couldn't remember. The blood, the death. The souls he took. Those were memories from before he was with that crew of others just as he imagined himself as. The havoc he caused was before he was with them; it was back before he had gained all his power, back when all he did was roam the earth killing and eating souls. He shuddered back to reality, closing his eyes again as the pain whirred him out of the dark thoughts shadowing his mind.
"Ulquiorra Schiffer," he mumbled through the pain. Was that his name though? Something sounded off about that too. Something about that name made him feel evil and desolate. It had a bittersweet ring when he spoke it; elegance, and destruction as one.
"He's certainly not an Arrancar anymore," he heard the man say with happiness, triumph and a glimmer of hope. What was he? What was he doing here? And who were these people? The confusion made his head spin again, and he fell back down to the floor, once again pressing on his temple, trying to relieve some of the pain.
"He doesn't look to good, either," the woman said with relative concern and distaste.
"He'll be all right."
"He's not an Arrancar anymore, we can't let him sit here and suffer."
"Don't worry, I promise, he'll be fine soon," he said comforting her. The thought wasn't geared towards him. Once again his mind fluttered with emotions of distrust, fear, evil, discomfort; everything bad all at once. Was there a single bit of happiness lingering in his mind somewhere? He felt miserable; Not just because of his current pain, but because he felt empty and alone. He felt like he had done something terrible, and now he had to live with guilt and agony for the rest of his life.
"I'll sit in here with him for a while," she said softly. He heard one set of feet walking away, as the other set came closer to him.
"You don't remember anything?" she asked serenely, trying to keep her voice down for his sake.
"No," he lied. He didn't want to make this history of his apparent to everyone else. Or did they already know about it? They were doing something to him, but whatever had happened he wasn't sure of. He didn't even have a hint at what time it was, what season it was – nothing. His mind was only filled with images of despair that were draining him quickly. He didn't have a friendly disposition as it was, and he would have rather had her stay away. Maybe giving her no indication of anything would give him just that.
"But you remember you name. Hm." She wasn't stupid, he figured that out instantly. She had an intelligent chime to her words, with confidence.
"Why does it matter?" he asked glumly, still clenching his face, still in dire pain, both physically and mentally. He had just woken up, and he was already worn out.
"I'll explain later when you're up to it. You're not looking too well right now, try and get some rest. I'll be here," she said softly, and he could hear her walking across the room, followed by what sounded like her sitting on the floor, though her movements were rather quiet. He tried to put the pain behind him, he wanted to go back to sleep and disappear into darkness. When he did drift off, it wasn't what he wanted to see.
"Ulquiorra, I presume you understand your orders?" It was him again.
"Yes, Lord Aizen," he replied with a voice unlike what he wanted to have. He had a monotonous mood, dismal eyes, and a confident stride to his step as he stepped away from his leader. He walked swiftly down an empty white hall, part of Aizen's 'castle'. Everything on his mind was blank, his intentions were only to do the task at hand, nothing more, nothing less. He swiped the air creating a portal between his dark world, and the World of the Living.
I'm out to kill Ichigo Kurosaki. That was what played on his mind as his senses searched for him. He had someone accompanying him, another Espada. People were falling around them shortly after their arrival. Not by his hands, he thought it trivial to be killing such trash. The bodies fell to the floor, their souls being taken by his comrade.
His eyes snapped open, his breathing heavy, his body hot from the nightmare. He groaned when he noticed his surroundings. A dream. I'm getting worked up over a dream. How pathetic. He noticed the pounding in his head had disappeared, although it didn't seem as though he had been sleeping for very long. He noticed the woman was still sitting across the room, though her eyes were peacefully closed. He sighed into the silence of the night, and relaxed back into his bed. The burden of his mysterious past was still pressing on his soul. He touched the base of his neck where the mark of his evil past still rested. The scar had a faint feeling to it where it jutted out in uneven relevance to the skin around it that was smooth. His nails were still black; he wondered if his face still carried the same cyan lines that matched his eyes. He didn't know what he looked like; if that dream was even accurate. Maybe that wasn't him. But it felt so real, like he was a part of me. That was me, it had to of been. He wanted to find a mirror to prove his assumptions wrong, but he didn't want to disturb the peace. He liked the night for that purpose; he could remember enjoying the night. If enjoyment was even a part of his abilities back then. Even now he couldn't find a peacefulness in the air, he held hatred, as though that dream and woken something up. He wanted to leave this behind and get away from them; he wanted to be alone until he figured things out.
He stood up, and his body instantly quivered under the quick movement. I'm weak. Why am I so weak? This isn't like me. Then again, I don't know what is. He felt the golden eyes of the woman across from him before he had to look to see that he had been caught.
"Awake again. Just what were you planning on doing?" she eyed him suspiciously. Her senses were too keen for him to be comfortable around her, and she looked at him through the darkness as though she had no difficulty with it.
He looked at her plainly, and sat back down with little hesitation. Weakness. Vulnerability. Giving in. This isn't me. Stop acting so foolish, stop acting like you're a weak human. He ignored these senses lurking in his mind, and stared at her, wondering if he would ever get out of here.
"Where's the explanation you promised earlier?" he asked, remembering that she had indeed told him she would tell him what was happening once he felt better. He felt refreshed, as far as the pain in his head went anyway.
"I don't think you're ready for that yet," she eyed him with hesitation, "I want to make sure you're going to be alright before I bring up the past."
"I remember some of it now," he murmered, his mind getting lost for a second again before he pulled himself back together, "I was an Arrancar. What am I now?"
"Human, as far as we know. Or, as close to a human as you can get. But, we don't know if you have any abilities left or not. We'll explore that later if the effects last."
"Effects of what?"
"What changed you from an Arrancar, to what you are now."
Both of their eyes lingered on eachother as they waited for the other to talk.
"It was for the better, for everyone. You're safe here, and we saved your life from being taken in the future."
"You assume I would have died?"
Her eyes narrowed on him. She was wondering why he had this fiercness to his tone, he should have been over that feral obsession of being on top.
"There are no assumptions, but your chances of living are far greater when you don't have us and the Soul Society with a bounty on your head." Though, there was no reward for killing an arrancar aside from pride, she was trying to get a point across to him.
His mind wandered to what the Soul Society was. It rang something in his memories, but nothing that triggered much importance at the moment.
"I'm telling you more than I wanted to let on about, how are you feeling?" she switched the subject with ease. His mind was easily shifted from one topic to the next due to his confusion.
"I'm a little sore," he replied carefully, "but fine."
"Good. Tomorrow I'll let you get some fresh air," she felt a twinge of guilt towards everything that was happening. He should be off at Aizen's right now. He should be having the death penalty. So why did she feel sorry for him? She and Kisuke had saved his life. Yet, she read past his easy mood. She could sense there was something deeper in him that was causing pain. She didn't know what exactly, but she figured he was remembering his life as an Arrancar. She didn't know how long it would take for his human memories to come back, if they did at all. His memories for now were shadowed in his dreadful life as an Arrancar. She could do nothing to erase that, and if he truly was human again, it would take a lot of effort for him to live with it.
Memories aren't always the things you love. Somehow, the terrible memories tend to stand out on top of the rest…
All right, that was it. And –please- keep in mind this is all "if this could happen…" type of stuff. I wanted to have him as a human character, so I could 'see' a different side of him, or what he'd be like if he was human. This might not be everyone's interpretation, and I'm trying to keep him acting somewhat like his Espada self, so I hope it's working out alright. Comments and Critique are always appreciated. I love to know what everyone thinks, especially for the first chapter so I know if anyone is enjoying it. Thanks for reading.