Disclaimer - I do not own Bleach although all OCs who appear in this story are mine.
A/N - this is the fifth installment of the Enemies Within series and once again focuses on Hitsugaya and Kin. Takes place many years after the end of the winter war.
Meant to Be
"I still can't believe that little punk is actually getting married," Squad Five Captain Ichigo Kurosaki muttered as he watched his wife Rukia, along with Matsumoto, Hinamori and Kaiya, stringing snowflake garland through the branches of the trees that were clustered throughout the garden. He'd already set up the archway, which was his contribution to the setup, and was now content to watch the girls decorate. Besides, decorating was WAY outside his area of expertise and even if he chose to help them out he'd only get yelled at for doing it wrong. So there was just no point in even trying.
"I'm pretty sure he'd be mad if he heard you say that," Rukia commented as she looped the garland through the leaves of the trees, thinking of the Squad Ten Captain. "And you can't call him little anymore. He's almost as tall as you are now."
"Almost," Ichigo said, rolling his eyes and shaking his head. "Until he's taller than I am he's still a little punk."
"And if he ever hears you say that then you're going to be a little bloody," Matsumoto commented as she and the girls stepped back to admire their work.
"Feh." Ichigo didn't sound even remotely concerned. Like he's ever be scared of that little punk. "So could one of you please tell me what the deal is with all of the snowflakes?"
"Kin really likes the snow," Hinamori responded in her soft-edged voice, her thoughts going to the young girl who was marrying her best friend. "So her wedding is winter themed."
"Nice," Ichigo muttered. "I really hate the cold."
"Actually, ironically, so does Captain Hitsugaya," Matsumoto said with a chuckle, offering Ichigo a smile. "So there won't be any actual snow."
"Well that's something I guess," Ichigo said.
"Don't you have somewhere you have to be?" Rukia reminded her husband, giving him a pointed look.
"I'm going," Ichigo said, taking the hint.
"Good," Rukia said with a smile. "I'll see you in a little while."
"Yeah, yeah," Ichigo muttered as he turned and walked away.
"So," Matsumoto said, clapping her hands together and turning her attention back to the other two women. "What's left?"
"Well," Rukia said slowly, a thoughtful expression on her face. "Ichigo's going to bring Orihime and Uryu to Soul Society and when they get here Kin can try on her dress. And I really hope it fits since we only have like two hours until the wedding. That's not a lot of time for alterations."
"I'm sure it'll be fine," Kaiya said.
Matsumoto nodded. "And we've finished decorating the garden so all that's left is the food."
"Nanao-san and the Seireitei Women's Society are taking care of that," Hinamori said. "So I think it's safe to say that it's in good hands."
"Alright then," Matsumoto said, a smile appearing on her face. "Let's go and find our bride."
"Do you have any idea where she might be?" Rukia asked as the four women departed the courtyard.
"She's hanging out in the Squad Thirteen office," Kaiya said with a giggle. "Since you told her that it was bad luck for the groom to see his bride before the wedding she decided that she should hide there so that she and Captain Hitsugaya didn't cross paths. Plus I think that she's slightly nervous and doesn't want anyone to know."
"Aww how sweet," Matsumoto exclaimed as she and her friends set out for the Squad Thirteen barracks.
"I can't believe I'm actually getting married," Kin thought to herself as she sat at her desk in the Squad Thirteen office. She and Hitsugaya had been seeing one another for quite some time however she'd been completely shocked when he'd asked for her hand in marriage. She knew that there was a side to the icy captain that he rarely showed to others however she'd never expected for him to declare his love for her as he had.
"Come in Ran-san," Kin called out, a smile appearing on her face as she heard Matsumoto calling out to her. The busty vice-captain was one of her favorite people and had actually had a hand in getting her and Hitsugaya together in the first place. In some ways she owed this day to her friend.
The door of the office slid open and Matsumoto stepped into the office, followed closely behind by Rukia, Kaiya and Hinamori. All four of the women offered Kin a smile and she returned the gesture.
"Are you excited about your big day?" Matsumoto asked as she walked across the office and pulled Kin into an embrace.
"Yea," Kin managed to gasp out as all of the air was forced from her lungs by Matsumoto's choking hug. She was finding it slightly hard to breath due to Matsumoto's crushing embrace and that single word was all she was able to utter.
"Um Rangiku," Hinamori said. "I think Toushirou might be a little mad if you kill his bride on their wedding day. Look at the poor girl, she's starting to turn purple."
"Sorry," Matsumoto said, quickly releasing her grip on the younger girl.
"S'okay," Kin panted, attempting to get some oxygen back to her brain.
Hinamori's gaze swept around the room and she saw that there were no traces of paperwork on either Kin's desk or on Hisagi's and that the room was spotlessly clean. She turned her chocolate gaze to Kin, a soft smile on her face. "Are you nervous Kin?"
"A little," Kin replied honestly, a slight blush rising to color her face. "I just want everything to be perfect."
"It'll be fine Kin," Rukia said in a reassuring voice. She walked over to the young girl and placed a comforting hand on her shoulder.
Kin nodded, grateful for the gesture. "Thanks Rukia. So where's Hisana-chan?"
Rukia smiled at the mention of her young daughter. "I left her with Ichigo's sister while we set up for the wedding. Ichigo's supposed to bring her along when he brings Uryu and Orihime to Soul Society."
Kin smiled. "I can't thank you guys enough for decorating and getting everything set up. You're the best friends that I could ask for."
"We know," Kaiya said with a smile as she gave her best friend a smile.
"And you're so modest," Kin laughed as she returned Kaiya's embrace.
Kaiya opened her mouth to inform her friend that modesty was not among her many good traits however she was interrupted by a knock on the door.
Kin glanced toward the door while Matsumoto called out, "If it's anyone other than Captain Hitsugaya feel free to enter."
Kin couldn't help but laugh at this statement and as Ichigo, Hisana, Orihime and Uryu stepped inside the office they joined the laughter. "Are you avoiding your groom Kin-chan?" Orihime asked as she and her husband walked over to the spot where Kin was standing, surrounded by the other women. Ichigo remained by the door with his daughter, as though anticipating the need for a hasty retreat.
Kin nodded. "Rukia said that it's bad luck if we see each other before the wedding."
Uryu adjusted his glasses with one finger and gazed at the Shinigami girl. "That's a western custom that she most likely read about in a book."
"Better watch it Uryu," Ichigo warned. "You're just asking for trouble, saying things like that."
Uryu cleared his throat and offered Kin the garment bag that he was carrying. "Here's your dress."
Kin bowed to the Quincy as she accepted the garment bag that he held out to her. "Thank you so much Uryu-san."
Uryu nodded however Ichigo called out, "You probably shouldn't thank him until you find out whether or not the dress actually fits."
"Of course it'll fit Kurosaki," Uryu said, once again adjusting his glasses. "I'm the best after all."
"Uh huh," Ichigo said.
"Come on Kin," Kaiya said, grabbing her best friend by the hand. "You should probably get ready. The service is supposed to start in an hour."
Kin gasped, not having realized the time.
"It's okay," Matsumoto said as she and the other women surrounded the bride. "Everything's going to go just fine and you and Captain Hitsugaya will live happily ever after."
"Does it really work that way?" Kin asked.
"For the woman," both Ichigo and Uryu said in unison, earning looks of disapproval from their wives.
"Come on Kin," Kaiya said, ushering her best friend toward the door. "If we don't get everyone separated there's going to be a couple of murders which would definitely cast a pall upon the happy occasion."
Laughing despite herself Kin nodded and allowed herself to be led from the room, her group of friends following closely behind her. Kaiya led the way down the corridor to the small apartment that Kin called home and the vice-captain of Squad Thirteen held out her hand and removed the kidou barrier that prevented anyone from entering.
Kin made her way back to her small bedroom and Kaiya accompanied her in case she needed help getting into her dress. Kin placed the garment bag down on her bed and unzipped it, carefully pulling out the dress that Uryu had designed and made for her wedding day.
"Oh Kin," Kaiya gasped as her gaze fell upon the dress. Instead of the customary white the gown was ice blue with an overlay of white lace covered in snowflakes. "It's beautiful."
"It is," Kin said as she took off her shihakusho and quickly dressed in the gown. "And it fits perfectly. Uryu-san really is the best."
"Don't let Captain Kurosaki hear you say that," Kaiya said as she zipped the back of the gown for her best friend. "He'll flip out."
"I'll keep that in mind," Kin said with a smile. "So how should I wear my hair?"
Kaiya gazed at her friend in an appraising sort of way for a few minutes and then said, "I think we should get the others to help."
"Alright," Kin said.
Kaiya opened the bedroom door and called out, "Hey guys we need some help in here."
The room was instantly filled with women. Kaiya turned to the others and said, "Kin wants to know how she should wear her hair. What do you guys think?"
"Pig-tails of course," Matsumoto said, gazing over at the young Shinigami with a broad smile. "After all I don't think I've ever seen you wear your hair any other way."
"I know," Kin said, fingering one of the pig-tails that she was already wearing. "But do you really think they're appropriate for my wedding?"
"They will be when we get through with them," Matsumoto said, pushing Kin toward the bed.
Kin sat down on the edge of her bed without protest and with that the women went to work. The young Shinigami sat patiently while the others fussed with her hair, although she was tempted to move when Hinamori started using kidou, and then when they were finished Rukia took her by the hand and led her toward a mirror.
Kin glanced at her reflection in the mirror and gasped in surprise. Her hair had been pulled up into her customary small pig-tails and her friends had threaded slender white ribbons through the rubber bands that secured them. And Kin now knew what the kidou Hinamori had been using was for. There were tiny flecks of ice scattered throughout her hair.
"Do you like it?" Hinamori asked.
Kin nodded, unable to speak.
"I think our ice princess is ready to meet her prince," Matsumoto said, clapping her hands together.
"It's time to go Captain Hitsugaya," a voice called out, breaking into the Squad Ten Captain's thoughts. Hitsugaya glanced up and saw Hisagi standing in the doorway of his office. With a nod he got to his feet and walked over to join the Captain of Squad Thirteen.
Together the two captains made their way out to the courtyard where the ceremony was being held and as they stepped outside Hitsugaya's gaze shifted around, taking in the decorations. Kin had told him that she wanted a winter themed wedding and Hitsugaya knew that her friends had decorated the courtyard for her. Despite himself he had to admit that they'd done a good job.
Hisagi and Hitsugaya walked toward the archway where Head Captain Ukitake was standing. It appeared as though all of the guests were assembled, all that was missing was the bride and her entourage. "Are you ready for this Toushirou?" Ukitake asked as the young captain came to stand in front of him.
Without hesitation Hitsugaya nodded. He knew without a doubt that Kin was the one he wanted to spend the rest of his life with, that she was the one who made him whole.
A collective gasp from the crowd alerted Hitsugaya to the fact that his bride had arrived and his teal gaze shifted toward the entrance to the courtyard. Kin was standing just inside the gate and she looked absolutely gorgeous, dressed in ice blue and white she was a picture of loveliness.
Kin's face brightened as her gaze fell upon her groom and she thought he looked very handsome in his formal hakama. His outfit was also ice blue and had a darker blue dragon embroidered on the back of the haori that he wore. "My prince," she thought to herself as she began to walk toward him.
Kin's gaze was focused squarely on Hitsugaya however she had to laugh out loud as she felt the first flakes of snow fall upon her face. It never snowed in Soul Society and the fact that the first snowflakes that had fallen in over a hundred years fell on her wedding day told Kin one thing. Her union with Toushirou was meant to be.
A/N - and thus ends the second one-shot in my Enemies Within series. Sorry if my characters seemed OOC. The next installment of the series is another chapter fic, titled Guardian, and it centers around the children of some of our favorite Shinigami. Hope you enjoyed this story, please review and let me know your thoughts. This is Hitsu-taichou signing out.