Disclaimer- I do not own Bleach nor am I making any profit from this, just borrowing the characters for my own amusement.
A/N- This is a sequel to my fic Reincarnation and continues the adventures of Shiro, Kasumi, Kaien and Masaki.
Chapter One - Shinigami Once More
Feeling completely and utterly ridiculous seventeen year old Toushirou Kurosaki left his bedroom and made his way downstairs to the den where his mother and two younger siblings were. All eyes focused on the young man as he stepped into the room, blushing furiously. Shiro was dressed in a black tuxedo, complete with ice blue vest and matching bow tie, and he was completely miserable. It still amazed him the things that he let his best friend talk him into doing.
"I can't believe she actually managed to talk me into this," Shiro muttered as he once again adjusted the tie that he wore around his neck. He had always hated dressing formally and couldn't imagine why anyone would willingly put a noose around their neck.
"Here Shiro-chan," Rukia said with a sigh, getting to her feet and fixing the tie that Shiro had managed to mess up in the span of about ten seconds. She soon had it back to the way it was supposed to look and she gave her son a meaningful look. "Now leave it alone."
Shiro groaned under his breath but made no move to loosen the tie again. He knew that such a move would only serve to get him into trouble and he was uncomfortable enough as it was without having to listen to a lecture from his mother.
"Nii-san," six year old Kaien said from the spot on the floor where he was playing with his twin sister Masaki. "You look weird."
"I know," Shiro muttered under his breath, once again resisting the urge to pull at the tie that he wore around his neck. The boy clenched his hands into fists so that he could better fight that urge.
"So why you dressed like that?" Masaki asked, gazing up at Shiro with a confused expression in her big, violet eyes.
Shiro shook his head, completely at a loss as to how to explain the situation to his younger siblings. He was dressed this way because Kasumi had asked it of him and, despite how much he might want to, he found himself unable to deny her. The very thought of making her sad caused an ache in his heart that he just couldn't explain but felt none the less.
"Now Kaien," Rukia said, speaking to her younger son but eying the elder boy. "Your brother doesn't look weird." She offered Shiro a wide smile. "I think you look very handsome Shiro-chan."
The compliment from his mother, although meant to put his mind at ease, only served to increase Shiro's embarrassment over the situation and the flush that was coloring his face deepened in color. "Well," he said after clearing his throat. "I guess I should go and pick up Kasumi. As much as I'd love to forget about this whole thing I'm not sure that she'd ever forgive me if I did."
"Have fun," Rukia called out as her son made his way toward the front door.
"Yea right," Shiro called out over his shoulder.
"I expect the two of you to come here afterward," Rukia practically shouted as her son opened the door and prepared to step outside. "I want pictures."
"Okay," Shiro shouted, stepping outside and quickly closing the door behind himself before his mother had the chance to shout something else at him. The boy took a deep breath and then began the familiar journey to the Ishida residense.
The trip didn't take long and before Shiro knew it he was standing at Kasumi's front door. At this point the boy was once again forced to resist the urge to run far and run fast however he managed to once again fight off this urge. Taking yet another deep breath Shiro raised his hand and knocked lightly on the door. A few moments passed, during which Shiro studied the ground intently, and then the door opened to reveal Kasumi's father.
"Hello Ishida-san," Shiro said politely as he raised his gaze to meet Uryu's. "Is Kasumi ready to go?"
"I don't think so," Uryu replied, eyeing the boy who had came to escort his daughter to a dance at her high school. "But you can come in and wait for her in the den Toushirou."
Inwardly Shiro groaned, not having desired to spend time with Kasumi's father, however he nodded and then followed Uryu into the house, closing the door behind himself. He followed Kasumi's father into the den and sat down on the sofa that Uryu gestured toward.
Uryu sat down on a chair facing the white-haired teen, his gaze intense. "So what are your intentions with my daughter tonight?"
"You have got to be kidding me?" Shiro thought to himself, resisting the urge to groan at the absurdity of this situation. He'd been friends with Kasumi for nearly as long as he could remember and yet now her dad was deciding to give him the 'date lecture'. This was beyond disturbing. "I intend to go to this stupid dance with her. End of story."
Uryu thought about the boy's response for a minute before nodding. "Alright but just remember Toushirou, I know where you live."
"DAD!" a voice called out from across the room.
Shiro's gaze shifted toward his best friend and his jaw dropped as his gaze fell upon her. Kasumi was dressed in a teal princess style gown that was an exact match for his eyes and she had her hair pulled up in an elegant style with little tendrils left to frame her pretty face.
"So what do you think Shiro-chan?" Kasumi asked as her mother stepped into the room behind her. She did a little pirrouette in place so that he could get the full affect.
Orihime recalled a similar exchange between the two kids when they were nine years old and could only hope that Shiro had a better answer now than he'd had at the time. If he gave her the same answer this time then it was likely that he wouldn't get a third chance.
"I have one word for you," Shiro said as he stepped across the room and came to stand beside her.
"And what might that be?" Kasumi asked, one eyebrow arched in curiosity.
"Good answer Shiro-kun," Orihime thought to herself with a smile. "There just might be some hope for you yet."
Suddenly remembering something that he'd brought along with him Shiro reached into his pocket and pulled a small box from it's depths. The white-haired teen opened the box and pulled from it a small corsage comprised of several small flowers.
"Oh Shiro-chan, it's gorgeous," Kasumi exclaimed as she allowed him to tie the corsage around her wrist. Then she threw her arms around his neck and pulled him into a tight hug. "Thank you so much."
"You're welcome," Shiro said in a quiet voice, his face flushing red once again.
"So are you ready to go?" Kasumi asked, a radiant smile lighting up her pretty face.
"As ready as I'm ever gonna be," Shiro muttered, offering Kasumi his arm.
Her blue eyes dancing Kasumi wrapped her arm in his and the two teens turned toward the door however they were halted when Orihime jumped in front of them. "Oh no you don't," she exclaimed as she barred their path toward the door. "Not until I've taken pictures. You both look absolutely stunning."
"Here we go again," Shiro thought to himself as he was once again forced to pose for pictues that would at some point be shown to every person that he knew. "This is so embarrassing."
"Come on Shiro-kun," Orihime said. "Smile for the camera."
Kasumi gave his hand a gentle squeeze and Shiro was forced to smile despite himself. There was just something about her touch that sent electricity coursing through his veins.
"That's more like it," Orihime said once she'd taken a half dozen photographs. "Okay you guys are free to go. Have fun."
"Thanks Mom," Kasumi called out as she and Shiro departed.
The two teens walked the short distance to Karakura High School and Kasumi led the way to the gymnasium, which had been colorfully decorated for the formal dance. Shiro was still somewhat reluctant however he followed Kasumi's lead without protest. It's not as though struggling would really accomplish anything. Kasumi would still get her way and he would still be miserable so it simply wasn't worth the effort.
"Kasumi-chan!" a feminine voice called out excitedly.
Kasumi and Shiro both turned and watched as a group of girls ran toward them, their faces alight with excitement. One of the girls, the apparent leader of the group, seized Kasumi by the hand and began pulling her away.
Kasumi turned apologizing eyes toward Shiro. "Sorry Shiro-chan, I'll be back in a few minutes."
Shiro shrugged. "Whatever."
Kasumi allowed herself to be dragged across the room and then she turned toward her captors and placed her hands on her hips. "What exactly is your problem?"
"That boy," the leader of the group of girls, Kohana, said in a breathless voice. She glimpsed back at the spot where Shiro was standing, looking completely and utterly bewildered, before she turned her attention back to Kasumi. "He's absolutely gorgeous and he doesn't go to school with us. Where did you find him?"
"Shiro-chan?" Kasumi said in confusion, glancing back toward her best friend. "He's been my best friend since we were little."
"Then why haven't we ever seen him?" Mika demanded.
Kasumi shrugged. "I haven't a clue except for the fact that he's been out of school for four years."
"But that would make him. . ." Kohana began, attemting to do the math in her head, however Kasumi cut her off. "Shiro-chan's seventeen, the same as me. He graduated when he was thirteen. Now if you'll excuse me I've got to get back to my date before he decides that now is a good time to make a break for it. See ya."
This said Kasumi turned away from the group of girls and made her way back over to the spot where Shiro was still standing. When she reached him Kasumi wrapped her arm around his and smiled at him.
"What was that all about?" Shiro asked, a confused expression in his blue-green eyes.
"Just girl talk," Kasumi said with another smile. "Now come on. I didn't drag you all the way here just to stand around and watch everyone else have a good time. Come on."
Shiro sighed and reluctantly allowed Kasumi to pull him out onto the dance floor. "Ugh, once again I can't believe I let her talk me into doing this."
During the course of the night Kasumi forced Shiro to dance with her several times and as the dance was winding down she pulled her reluctant best friend out onto the nearly deserted dance floor for one final slow dance. Kasumi wrapped her arms around Shiro and held him tight as the soft music filled the air around them. This night had been almost perfect and Kasumi was content in Shiro's arms. With a deep sigh she placed her head on his shoulder.
Suddenly there was a deep rumbling noise and the ground began to shake violently. Kasumi clutched Shiro tightly as the two teens fought to maintain their balance. Screams tore through the air as the building trembled in the midst of a violent earthquake and through the noise of the frantic students Shiro heard a creaking sound. The teen glanced up just in time to see the beam falling.
Pushing Kasumi to the ground Shiro threw his body on top of hers, to shield her from the falling debris that was too close to dodge. He simply wasn't fast enough in his human form.
"Ow," Shiro moaned as he got to his feet. "Well that was mildly painful."
The boy glanced down at himself, to make sure that he wasn't injured, and saw that he was now wearing his shihakusho as well as his zanpaktou. Shiro groaned as he realized what this meant. He hadn't used his Gikongan to assume his Shinigami form which meant that he had died.
Glancing around the gymnasium Shiro saw that the earthquake had caused complete devastation. There were cries from the wounded and Shiro's thoughts immediately shifted to Kasumi. Glancing around frantically he searched for any sign of his best friend.
"Wow," a familiar voice spoke up. "That was rough and I think we're dead now Shiro-chan."
"Oh thank goodness you're. . ." Shiro began however his voice trailed off as he noticed what she was wearing. Instead of the teal princess style dress that she'd been wearing before she was now dressed in what could only be described as a reverse shihakusho. Where his was black hers was white and where his was white hers was black. It was weird.
"What the hell?" Shiro said, gaping at his best friend in total shock. "You look like a Hollow."
"I do not!" Kasumi snapped, annoyed that her best friend would say something like that and now of all times. They'd just died and she was still reeling from that discovery and Shiro has to go and say something like that.
"Whatever you say," Shiro said.
"Look at this place," Kasumi said in a small voice as she gazed around the destroyed gymnasium.
"I know," Shiro said as he pulled Hyourinmaru from the sheath that he was wearing secured across his back. He and Kasumi weren't the only ones who had perished during the earthquake and he knew that he had to perform Konso on the souls who were standing around looking shocked and bewildered.
The young Shinigami quickly dispatched the other three people who had lost their lives and then he returned to the spot where his best friend was standing. "Come on Kasumi," he said as he reached out for her hand. "We have to go to Soul Society."
"But Shiro-chan," Kasumi said. "Aren't you going to tell your parents what happened?"
"There's no point," Shiro replied. "They'll find out soon enough and it's not as though anything's really changed."
"Then what about my parents?" Kasumi persisted, staring into her best friend's blue-green eyes. "Things have definately changed for us. Don't you think we should go and tell them?"
"Oh hell no!" Shiro exclaimed, staring at his friend as though she'd completely lost her mind. "Do I look suicidal to you? If we go and tell him then he'll automatically assume that it's somehow my fault and then he'll kill me. Twice in one day is a bit much and I have no desire to be reincarnated again. Someone might screw it up and I just can't go through that again."
Kasumi debated arguing the point further however she decided that it wasn't a good idea under the circumstances and merely followed Shiro out of the gym. As they walked the two teens heard the sounds of sirens and knew that help was on the way for those who had survived the earthquake.
"Besides," Shiro said in a quiet voice as he led his best friend away from the scene of destruction. "They need to have a normal reaction when they're informed that their children have died in an earthquake. If we tell them that we're dead then the shock value will be gone."
"Oh," Kasumi said now in full understanding as to Shiro's motives for keeping their deaths a secret from their parents. "I understand."
A/N- and thus ends the first chapter of Shiro's sequel. Poor Shiro and Kasumi, killed at a high school dance, that would really suck. Hope you enjoyed this chapter, please review and tell me what you thought. Til next time this is Hitsu-taichou signing out.