Disclaimer- I do not own Bleach.
A/N- Little bit of fluff involving Hitsugaya and an OC, Kin. She was one of the main characters in Countdown to Conflict and is the character I chose to pair with Hitsugaya for this series. Part four of the Enemies Within Series.
Of Snowflakes and Watermelons
Captain Hitsugaya tried his best to scowl at the pig-tailed girl who'd just burst into his office and addressed him so irreverently however the effect must have been comical because Kin instantly placed her hand in front of her mouth to hide the smile that had appeared on her face. Never the less he could tell, by the way that her pale blue eyes were dancing in amusement, that she was laughing at him. In her head if not out loud.
Gaining control of herself Kin wiped the smile from her face and held up a small basket which she had, up until that point, concealed behind her back. "I came by to see if you wanted to go on a picnic with me Toushirou-kun."
Once again Hitsugaya felt the ever present urge to snap at her for addressing him in the familiar however the young captain realized that he was going to have to get over that impulse. It seemed ridiculous to expect his girlfriend, his pulse quickened as that word ran through his mind, to address him in the formal. After all she'd transferred to the Thirteenth Division so things would be less awkward between the two of them and since Hisagi had made her his vice-captain there was only one rank separating them.
"So what do you say Toushirou-kun?"
Kin's voice broke through Hitsugaya's thoughts and when he gazed over at her he saw that there was a hopeful expression in her pale blue eyes. He also saw that she was wearing the pendant that he had given her for her birthday, the very same day as Aizen's attack on Soul Society. He shuddered involuntarily as he recalled that fateful day and the attack that had almost ended his life however the sight of the clear snowflake that was glittering against her pale skin served to warm him.
"If that's what you want to do," Hitsugaya said in reply to her question, trying his best to sound indifferent. Excitement over such things was childish, he knew that, and yet he couldn't control the slight jump in his pulse rate that occurred whenever this girl was around. She was strange, there was no denying that fact, yet she made him feel things that no one else ever had.
"Alright!" Kin exclaimed, her blue eyes dancing once again as she offered him an excited smile. "Ran-san owes me a case of sake!"
"Excuse me?" Hitsugaya said, staring over at her with a look of incredulity apparent in his teal eyes. The young captain was desperately hoping that he'd heard her wrong. Surely what he'd heard couldn't have been what she'd actually said.
"Don't take that the wrong way Toushirou-kun," Kin said quickly, holding up her hands in a placating gesture. "It's just that I told Ran-san that I was going to invite you on a picnic and she laughed at me and bet a case of sake that you'd say no. I don't even like the stuff."
"Uh huh," Hitsugaya said, staring at her with one eyebrow arched.
Kin fidgeted absently with the snowflake that she was wearing around her neck and then seized Hitsugaya by the hand. "Come on."
His eyes wide in disbelief the young captain allowed himself to be pulled from the office and out into the sunlight by the exuberant Kin and he couldn't suppress the shocked gasp that escaped his lips when they arrived at the sight that she'd chosen for their picnic. He'd been expecting for her to take him to one of the gardens, either in the Thirteenth Division or the Tenth, and he was utterly amazed when they arrived at his special spot in District One of the Rukongai. This gently flowing river that wound it's way through a beautiful grove of flowering cherry trees was the place where he came whenever he needed comfort.
"Don't you like it?" Kin asked in a quiet voice, mistaking his gasp of surprise for one of displeasure and his silence for the same thing. Her face fell; she'd been so sure that he would like this place and had been excited about showing it to him. "We can go somewhere else if you want Toushirou-kun."
Hitsugaya quickly shook his head. He realized that he'd inadvertently hurt her feelings but he'd just been so surprised that, out of all the places they could have gone both inside the Seireitei and outside of it's protective walls in the Rukongai, she'd chosen THIS place. This is the place where he came to clear his mind when he was stressed and the fact that she knew about it and had chosen to bring him here seemed kind of odd. Now he was aware of the fact that he couldn't possibly be the only one in Soul Society who knew about this spot however the fact that he'd found someone else who was drawn by its beauty and serenity seemed almost miraculous.
"Are you sure you don't mind staying here?" Kin asked. She was staring at him with those piercing blue eyes and it seemed to Hitsugaya, as it always did when she fixed him with THAT look, that she was staring straight through him and into his heart.
"It's fine," Hitsugaya said.
"Are you sure?" Kin persisted. She'd desperately wanted this little outing to be special but now she had the feeling that she'd messed things up, as usual. Honestly what had made her think that a captain would want to hang out in the Rukongai of all places? "We can go somewhere else if. . ."
"I said it's fine," Hitsugaya said, his words coming out gruffer than he'd intended. The young captain softened his voice, with effort, and said, "I really do like it here."
"Alright," Kin said with a smile, although she had the feeling that he was only saying these words because he knew that it was what she wanted to hear. "Oh well," she thought to herself with a small shrug of her shoulders as she pulled a blanket out of the backpack that she wore. "If he wants to be obliging like that then I'll just let him."
With this thought in mind Kin spread out the blanket under a cherry tree on the bank of the peacefully flowing river. Gesturing toward the blanket Kin offered Hitsugaya a smile. "Well don't just stand there Toushirou-kun, sit down."
Smirking slightly at the order from this diminutive little spitfire Hitsugaya obliged and sat down on the edge of the blanket. Kin sat down across from him and placed the basket in the center, between the two of them. She served the meal that she had made especially for him and for awhile they ate in silence. All this changed however as she pulled out the treat that she'd brought for dessert.
"Look Toushirou-kun," Kin said as she held up a small container. "I brought watermelon!"
Hitsugaya couldn't prevent the slight blush that colored his face as he accepted the piece of fruit that she held out to him. This had been his favorite food when he was a child back in the Rukongai however he hadn't had a piece in a long time. "How did you. . ."
"Hinamori-san told me that it was your favorite," Kin replied quietly as she took a bite of her own slice of watermelon, a thoughtful expression in her pale blue eyes. "I'm sorry that we were talking about you behind your back Toushirou-kun but I wanted to make this special and I needed some help."
Hitsugaya shook his head, not really sure why he was surprised by her actions. He'd only known her for a few months however in that length of time Kin had proven herself over and over to be someone who knew what she wanted and who went for it.
The two of them sat in companionable silence, eating their watermelon and lost in their separate thoughts. Then Hitsugaya turned his gaze back to Kin and noticed that she was staring out at the river with a far away expression in her blue eyes. "What are you thinking about?"
"I was just wondering why it never snows here," Kin said in a quiet voice, her gaze shifting away from the river and coming to rest on him. "That's the one thing that I miss from my human life. I love the snow."
Hitsugaya stared at her for a few minutes and then said, "Your zanpaktou is ice/snow based. Why don't you just make it snow yourself?"
Kin shook her head as her thoughts flashed back to her one and only disastrous attempt to make it snow. That was actually how she'd learned the most powerful attack of her zanpaktou, which was a whirlwind of ice and snow. "I tried that, once. I spent several hours in the infirmary and it took Squad Four three days to clean up the mess."
Hitsugaya rolled his eyes, thinking that Kin never did anything half-assed. At first it seemed strange to him that this prodigy who had made it through the Shinigami Academy in a mere two years instead of the standard six was unable to use her zanpaktou to make it snow however when he thought about it more in-depth it occurred to him that Kin had only been out of the Academy for five months. Of course she wouldn't have full control of her powers yet, that would have been way beyond amazing, and as far as ice/snow type zanpaktou went her sword, Youkai Ookami, was second in power only to Hyourinmaru.
Personally he'd never been partial to the cold, slightly ironic since his zanpaktou, like hers, was ice/snow based, however he could tell by the wistful expression in her pale, ice blue eyes that she had truly loved the snow and missed it terribly.
"Well I guess I've tortured you enough for one day," Kin said abruptly, getting to her feet and offering him her hand. Hitsugaya accepted her proffered hand and allowed her to pull him to his feet. "I'm sure Captain Hisagi thinks that I've ran away or something."
Kin quickly gathered up her things, cramming the empty dishes back into the basket and the blanket back into her backpack, and then the two of them walked back to the Seireitei. Once they passed through the gates Kin turned to Hitsugaya and offered him a smile. "Guess I'll see you later Toushirou-kun."
Hitsugaya nodded and watched as she skipped off toward the Thirteenth Division compound. Actually skipped, he couldn't believe it.
The next day Kin was sitting at her desk in the office of the Thirteenth Division, attempting to keep her mind focused on the report that she was working on, when she heard the sound of someone knocking lightly on the door. Captain Hisagi glanced up from his own work and called out, "Come in."
The door slid open and Kin had to fight the urge to call out in surprise as Hitsugaya stepped through the doorway and into the office. Forcing herself to remember that she was in the office and on duty Kin managed not to cry out however she did stare at Hitsugaya in confusion.
"Welcome Captain Hitsugaya," Hisagi said as he eyed his visitor in confusion. "What brings the Captain of the Tenth here to the Thirteenth Division?"
"I came to ask if I might borrow your vice-captain for a little while," Hitsugaya said calmly, as though they were discussing ordinary, everyday business.
Hisagi briefly glanced over at Kin and one look at her was enough to effectively make him unable to deny the request. There was a look of such excitement on her face and he just couldn't tell the young girl no. "Sure thing. If Kin wants to go with you then she has my permission."
Kin immediately jumped to her feet and hurried across the office to the spot where Hitsugaya was standing. The Tenth Division Captain didn't look at her as he turned back to Hisagi. "Thank you Captain Hisagi. I'll make sure that she's back in time to complete her work."
"Don't worry about it," Hisagi said, waving his hand in dismissal.
"Come with me," Hitsugaya said to Kin as he turned toward the door. Unsure of what exactly was going on Kin bowed to her captain and then followed Hitsugaya out of the office. The white-haired captain led the way silently across the Seireitei and with each step that they took Kin found herself growing more and more confused. Where exactly was he taking her and why didn't he just come out and tell her?
"Um Toushirou-kun," Kin said finally. "Where exactly are we going?"
"You'll see," Hitsugaya said, not slowing his pace.
Kin let out a slightly exasperated breath however she'd known him long enough to know that pressing him for details of their destination would not make him reveal it. He could be so stubborn some times. All she could do was follow along behind him and wonder where it was they were going.
Hitsugaya led Kin through the Tenth Division compound, out to the garden that was located in the center, and when Kin stepped through the door she couldn't contain the gasp that came to her lips. Instead of the usual flowers and green grass the garden was coated with a light layer of glistening white snow and as she gazed up she saw that snowflakes were still falling gently. "Wow!"
Kin whirled around to face Hitsugaya, a smile of pure joy lighting up her face. "Oh thank you Toushirou-kun!" Overcome with happiness, and not thinking about any possible repercussions, Kin ran over to the spot where Hitsugaya stood and threw her arms around him. Hitsugaya's eyes widened in surprise at the embrace however as Kin raised her head, looking up into his eyes, and he gazed into her clear blue eyes that surprise melted away and was replaced with affection. He leaned forward slowly and, after a moment's hesitation, he gently touched her lips with his own.
Kin pulled him into a tighter embrace as their lips came together and when they finally broke apart she couldn't help but smile at the slight blush that rose to color his cheeks. "That was wonderful Shirou-kun," she breathed, smiling at him.
Hitsugaya cleared his throat and stepped back a couple of steps, clearly embarrassed by the show of affection. He stared over at Kin with a thoughtful expression in his teal eyes, amazed that she took such joy out of something so small. All he'd done was use Hyourinmaru to make it snow and then placed a barrier kidou over the garden so that the snow wouldn't melt. It wasn't as though it were anything miraculous and yet Kin had been absolutely ecstatic over the result.
Noticing the look that Hitsugaya was giving her Kin smiled at him and then, without warning, knelt down and picked up a handful of snow which she promptly threw at his head. The snowball struck the surprised boy in the side of the head and Kin laughed at him in a taunting manner. "I can't believe you let that hit you Shirou-kun!"
Thinking to himself that this wasn't the reaction he'd been expecting from her Hitsugaya never the less picked up a snowball of his own and tossed it back at her. His aim was perfect and although Kin tried to dodge it the snowball found it's mark and hit her full in the face.
Hitsugaya's eyes widened as the snowball hit her face and exploded in a spray of snow; he'd honestly expected for her to dodge it with ease, however instead of getting angry at him she merely threw her head back and laughed out loud. The pure sound of her laughter made even the snow covered garden seem warm and Hitsugaya smiled softly. Just like a snowflake, his Kin truly was one of a kind.
A/N - It's fluff! I wrote this because my best friend told me that I had a tendency to write depressing fics and needed a little more fluff in my life. So I did my best to corral the fluff bunnies. Feel free to review and tell me what you thought. Part Five is also a one-shot, entitled Meant to Be. This is Hitsu-taichou signing out.