A/N: Thanks for your reviews!
"No I don't want to talk about it and if you don't get out of here right now. I swear I'm going to turn you all into a block of ice and BREAK YOU INTO A MILLION LITTLE PIECES!" Hitsugaya roared, slamming the sliding door with all his strength as a group of men (and women) scrambled.
The door fell off its hinges at the harsh impact, and for a moment Hitsugaya gripped the remnants of yet another broken door.
He swore loudly, discarding the door aside, and marched to his desk
Word quickly spread about his humiliating talk with Yamamoto-soutaichou (all thanks to some stupid fox-faced bastard) so of course all of Seririte gossiped about Hitsugaya's behavior towards a certain gorgeous fukutaichou.
Without a doubt, Matsumoto was the most beautiful woman in Seririte, so naturally she had a number of admirers and adoring fans. Matsumoto enjoyed the attention and various times she used it to her advantage. But as much as she loved being in the spotlight, Matsumoto had one rule—'You can look, but you can't touch.'
Indeed the last person that dared to grab her ass ended up in a concussion with several missing teeth. So to have someone actually touch those overly, large breasts and come out unharmed was a complete miracle. Many cheered little Hitsugaya for being such a lucky bastard, but the majority of Seririte was asking for well, details—the pervs.
He had just been dealing with a group of younger shinigami, who came with large eager eyes and crooked smiles. Within a few moments, though the idiots ran as fast as their legs carried them, some of them spotting nasty frostbites.
Still his anger did not dissipate as he punctured yet another hole on today's paperwork. 'Okay just calm down,' he told himself taking several deep breaths.
"Burr… it's so cold here taichou."
"I said— oh it's you." Matsumoto stood in the entrance, a simple smile on her pretty face. Hitsugaya blushed, staring down at the parchment. He gulped still unable to look her in the eyes.
"Um… look Matsumoto I-I'm sorry about what I did," he stuttered. "It was stupid and I wasn't thinking and I'm really sorry."
"You should be apologizing."
"I know I'm sorry," he answered his head still bowed in shame.
"Seriously taichou! Don't you know how difficult it is to get a good door nowadays? The wind's gonna get in!"
"The door taichou," she said, holding the discarded and broken door. "You really should learn how to control your temper."
He scowled. "No I'm not apologizing for the stupid door."
"Then what?" she asked examining the broken hinges.
Did she honestly not know or was this just some plan to further torment him? He cleared his throat. "You know yesterday when you stole… something and hid it somewhere and I got it from there."
She put the door aside looking at him, quizzically. Again Hitsugaya flushed, unable to meet her face.
"Sorry taichou I have no clue what you're talking about."
"Matsumoto of course you know."
"Eh, no taichou. What happened?" she thought for a moment before gasping out loud. "Oh wait! Could it be that time you cut my salary for using the entire division's allowance on a party?"
But she interrupted. "Or could it be that time you yelled at me for spilling sake all over your haori?"
"Or could it be that one time you gave me double the paperwork for calling you shor—"
"Your monster chest Matsumoto!" he pointed to her overly large chest, lost for patience. "Yesterday I grabbed your breast!" Instantly he flushed, realizing the impact of his words before burying his head.
It took her a while for her to remember but she gasped in comprehension.
"Oh that? Taichou it was an accident. Don't worry about it."
He looked up, trying to hide the tint of red. "Really?"
"Yeah. I'm not offended or anything. Ah so that's what all this gossip is about!" she gasped again comprehending all the earlier whispers. "Don't worry about it taichou by the end of the week, it'll probably be gone."
He sighed in relief. "So were okay?"
"Of course, taichou!" She smiled brightly before a mischievous though crossed her mind. "But you know taichou… no one really knows what happened."
He was just about to yell at her stupid remark when a stuttering shinigami came through the broken door frame, making Hitsugaya feel as though all of Seririte was conspiring to embarrass him.
Around lunchtime Ise, fukutaichou of the Eighth Division, arrived to invite Matsumoto for lunch. Matsumoto happened to be running an errand and Hitsugaya was lounging on the couch after three grueling hours of standing in the hot summer sun. He was just dozing off when he felt a presence by the doorframe.
"Ah hello Ise-fukutaichou," he greeted trying not to show his intimidation. Ise scared the crap out of him, especially after she her reprimanded yesterday. Kyoraku-taichou almost burst into tears when she was done with him too.
"Good afternoon Hitsugaya-taichou," she answered straightening her glasses. "I was wondering if Rangiku-san might accompany me for lunch." She paused for a moment noticing the broken door and the messy office. "I hope everything is well, you know no inappropriate behavior going on."
"No of course not," he answered a little too quickly. He straightened up, inviting her to sit on the armchair across from him.
Ise sat down mechanically, her sharp gaze never leaving him for a moment.
"I heard the Tenth has been assigned a mission to the North," she mentioned conversationally.
"Yeah we'll be leaving by the end of the week." He paused unable to think of anything else to say. Normally he didn't have such a hard time talking to other captains or vice-captains, but for some reason he felt like a tiny, little kid.
"Well I wish you the best of luck, Hitsugaya-taichou," she finally spoke realizing he wasn't going into details of the mission.
"Thank you," he answered, fidgeting his thumbs. Where the hell was Matsumoto?
She promised she wouldn't take any details- of which included 'sake breaks' as she put it- and would be back promptly before lunch. But maybe she had surrendered to her weakness and gone to the local bar, while he was stuck sitting uncomfortably with Ise.
He glanced at Ise Nanao, wondering how in the world someone so strict and serious could be best friends with Matsumoto. The two were polar opposite yet they got along so well. Well if he thought about it, there must be a certain degree of trust between them, considering that Matsumoto was the first person Ise went to whenever she's in some serious trouble. And Ise does stick up for Matsumoto, like yesterday afternoon, Hitsugaya's groaned to himself.
Actually if he thought deeply about it, Ise was the reason he met Matsumoto in Seririte. After meeting Matsumoto in Roukongai, he never saw her again, though he spent years searching for her. It wasn't until he joined the Gotei-13 that Hinamori mentioned she met someone from the Eighth Division that had been a shinigami for many years and probably knew a lot of people.
To make a long story short, Ise cited of someone that fit Matsumoto's description. There had been another embarrassing reunion but after the awkwardness, he became good friends with Matsumoto. Afterwards it was history between them, but still he couldn't help wondering whether the two would have ever met if Ise hadn't been there.
"Sorry I'm late taichou! But I couldn't haggle for a good door," Matsumoto muttered holding a number of folders against her chest. She spotted Ise sitting on the armchair opposite her taichou before squealing and giving her a hug.
"Nanao-chan what are you doing here?"
"I thought we might have lunch together," she answered breaking free from her strong grip.
"Yeah that'll be great!" Matsumoto beamed setting aside the folders. "Hey do you want to come, taichou?" she asked.
"No I'm fine," he responded still somewhat afraid of being near Ise's presences. Matsumoto collected her things and left a few minutes later, though not without giving her infamous bear hugs and shoving his face to her cleavage and ruffling his hair. Again Ise shot him a harsh expression- this probably counting as inappropriate behaviour but Matsumoto did this so often, it was more annoying then perverted.
Matsumoto waved goodbye, and the two women left easily chatting. Matsumoto was trying to convince Ise of going to a bar, but of course Ise hated alcohol.
Alone in the messy office, Hitsugaya wondered when Hinamori would come by for lunch. Usually they shared lunch together, well Hinamori brought him lunch, and together they would talk about work or perhaps a visit to Roukongai. Sometimes Matsumoto or Kira joined them, but mostly it was the two of them.
He glanced at the clock. It was already two o'clock and Hinamori still hadn't come by. 'Maybe she's running late,' he thought, looking through the paperwork and frowning at the overly large hole he had created. But then an hour and a half passed by and still no Hinamori.
Hitsugaya frowned. She was never this late.
Deciding that it wouldn't hurt to go to the Fifth Division for lunch, Hitsugaya left the office, briefly wondering if he should just leave the place as is—there was no door anymore, and anyone could easily walk in. In the end he gave some recent shinigami the task of guarding the office.
Seririte became scorching hot during the summer, so naturally all this heat pissed off Hyorinmaru that and half the crowd was stopping to ask him about yesterday- and for the record they definitely deserved the nasty bits of frostbites after the endless badgering. Hitsugaya arrived hot, tired and hungry at the Fifth Division headquarters.
"Where's Hinamori," he asked a random shinigami.
"Oh good afternoon Hitsugaya-taichou," the shinigami answered bowing respectfully. "But Hinamori-fukutaichou is away at the moment."
"Then find her." The shingami winced at the tone of his voice before hastily running down the corridor in search of Hinamori. He waited for a few moments in the empty corridor until he got bored and headed towards Hinamori's office when Aizen opened the door, about to leave.
"Hitsugaya-kun to what do I owe the pleasure?"
"It's Hitsugaya-taichou," he corrected, his foul mood not interrupting his usual correction. "Where's Hinamori?"
"I believed she was having lunch with Kira-kun"
"I was just in the Third Division," Aizen explained wiping his glasses before putting them back on. "When I saw Hinamori-kun there, I thought you knew?"
"No," he answered sourly. If Hinamori was going to eat with Kira, she should have told him otherwise he would have gone with Matsumoto and Ise. The idiot probably forgot.
"She should be arriving shortly," Aizen continued offering him a sympathetic smile. "You're welcome to wait for her, though I have to be at the Ninth Division at the moment."
Hinamori's office was a lot neater and organized then his messy office. She put cute, pink sticky notes all over her desk with stupid motivational phrases like, "Don't give up! You can succeed if you work hard enough!" and other stuff that made him want to gag.
Although the office lacked a large comfy couch, it was professionally arranged with stiff armchairs, a polished table, and a shelf of books on the wall—all books Aizen had written.
He had just sat behind Hinamori's spotless desk, his feet on the table when the door opened and she walked in. "Hitsugaya-kun get your feet off my desk!" Immediately she gasped at herself as though scowling herself for forgetting something important.
"Hinamori why do you keep these stupid notes on your desk?" he asked ripping one off. "'Fight hard?'" he read tossing the paper aside.
She didn't say anything and went into the bookshelf, scanning though all the long and dull book Aizen had written about combining multiple kidou spells.
"You're so weird." He sat up from her chair. "Any way I've been looking for you. Aizen says you had lunch with Kira."
"It's Aizen-taichou!" she nearly yelled dropping the book. Immediately she picked it up, afraid dirt would ruin the book.
"Yeah so why didn't you tell me? I thought we were going to eat lunch together…" He trailed off not realizing the anger building within Hinamori.
"I can't believe you forgot Hitsugaya-kun!" she exploded her face red.
He blinked. "What?"
"You told Aizen-taichou that I was a bedwetter!" she yelled out. "And now you act as if it's nothing!"
"Because it isn't." He sighed looking at her face. "It's not as if he heard!"
"You're making a big deal out of nothing Hinamori."
"No I'm not! You embarrassed me in front of Aizen-taichou and then you wouldn't even apologize!"
But she continued to go on and on until finally he couldn't stand her yapping.
"Hinamori you're already clumsy and short, Aizen would never be impressed by you. Saying you're a bedwetter already proves what he knows—that you'll always be a little kid."
She froze at the accusation and covered her face, her lower lip trembling. Tears welled up in her eyes until finally she ran from the office, leaving Hitsugaya speechless.
He didn't think Hinamori would react like that. Whenever he teased her, she would usually yell back. But this was the first time she ever burst in tears, over something so trivial. Then again Hinamori did burst into tears over stupid things like the time she found a frog in her hair- heh that was a fun prank.
He thought about it all afternoon until he concluded that Hinamori was just being overdramatic. In a couple of days she'd be back to normal with her stupid nicknames and stories and she'll forget all about this foolish affair.
"Excuse me Hitsugaya-taichou but Hinamori-kun sent you these reports," Kira answered awkwardly, standing by the door frame.
"Kira!" Matsumoto smiled glad for any excuse to not finish paperwork. Already she was a week behind.
"Hello Matsumoto-san," Kira continued. "What happened to your door?" he asked noticing the empty space where the door should be.
"Oh taichou broke it," she answered causally. "I think it's the third door he's broken," Matsumoto said thoughtfully. "And its a pain in the ass finding a replacement."
"Kira," Hitsugaya interrupted having finished scanning through the reports. "Why didn't Hinamori deliver this?"
"I'm not sure Hitsugaya-kun… I mean Hitsugaya-taichou but Hinamori-kun's really upset."
He frowned. Really did Hinamori have to make such a big fuss over some little, insignificant thing?
"Well tell her I want to talk to her."
Kira nodded before excusing himself out. For a moment it was silent until Matsumoto finally asked the obvious question.
"Did you and Hinamori have a fight?"
"No!" he quickly fluttered. "Well I might have teased her over something but she'll get over it."
"Yeah. Just hurry up and finish those reports they're due tomorrow."
But Hinamori didn't get over it. Kira continued to act liaison between Hinamori and Hitsugaya. She didn't come to the office anymore for lunch, and she didn't stop by on her days off. The times that he did see her, she was usually swamped with work or else hiding behind a pile of books.
Fed up with her behavior, Hitsugaya paid another visit to the Fifth Division. A shingami insisted that she did not want to be disturbed but he barged into the office anyway, fuming mad. Thankfully Aizen was away in the Ninth Division, so Hinamori was alone.
She sat behind her desk, finishing off the latest report when she glanced up as the doors flew open with no announcement. Immediately, the shinigami apologized but Hinamori smiled saying it was alright. Hitsugaya stepped into the office, fuming.
"What the hell is going on Hinamori?" he asked. "Why have you been ignoring me for the past three days?"
She turned back into her reports as though the sudden interruption was nothing but the wind.
"Are you even listening to me?" he asked.
In respond she gathered her belongings and darted past him, leaving him alone.
"If you're not going to talk to me then fine. I DON'T CARE!" he continued to yell. "See if I care stupid Momo!"
The Tenth Division left for its mission, early Friday morning. It was supposed to be a simply investigation near the northern hills, but the mission ran slight longer than expected. The problem began with a detour through abandoned paddy fields but because of severe raining a few nights ago, the trip back home was turning out to be hard and gruesome.
"Squads are all assembled taichou," Matsumoto declared, stepping right in front of them.
Hitsugaya nodded, wiping the mud off his nose. "Let's try to pick up some speed then." Matsumoto nodded, at once falling back to utter a new order. She returned a few minutes later, easily falling into step behind him.
His mind wandered for a moment of a nice bath, a hot cup of tea, and a long nap when Matsumoto suddenly blurted something out.
"Did you and Hinamori ever make up?"
He raised an eyebrow at her. Ever since his confrontation with Hinamori, two weeks ago, he had all but forgotten about their fight. "She probably got over it already."
But when they passed through the gates of Seririte and they settled into their usual routine, Hinamori still hadn't come by. This was strange.
No matter how mad they got at one another, they would always see each other after a mission. It had started when they joined the Gotei-13 and continued when they both became commanding officers. Now she was acting all strange, as though they hadn't grown up together in the farms of Roukongai or shared a home and memories together.
"Taichou! I think I finally found the perfect door!" Matsumoto began happily recounting her bargain hunting.
It had been roughly three weeks and the door had yet to be repaired. Still it was actually a good thing, since the perverts still loomed about asking for details- Hitsugaya would probably have broken it anyway.
He picked at his soba noodles, his mind still stuck on Hinamori. They hadn't eaten lunch for over weeks.
"You okay taichou?" she asked noticing his downcast glance. He was about to say no, everything was perfectly fine but he knew he could trust Matsumoto. Hell she had kept blankie a secret.
"Hinamori's still mad at me."
Her face softened. "What happened?"
"I- I called Hinamori a bedwetter in front of Aizen and then I kinda said Aizen would never be interested in her."
Matsumoto winced at his declaration. No wonder the girl was mad at him. "Did you apologize?"
"I didn't do anything!"
That meant no. He hadn't apologized.
Masumto sighed. Despite being such a precocious child, her taichou was clueless when it came to emotions. She suspected that he constantly held everything in, so that when he did experience some type of emotion—anger for instant—it burst forward like a shaken sake bottle.
"You embarrassed her in front of Aizen-taichou," she began slowly.
"So she constantly embarrasses me with her stupid nicknames and stories! She brought blankie here!" He said out loud forgetting that they were outside in front of passing people. Those that did stop to stare, Hitsugaya threw them a nasty look. Since Hinamori stopped talking to him, Hitsugaya had been stuck eating cheap vendor food with Matsumoto for company.
Matsumoto put aside her bowl of noddles. "But this is different. Hinamori is in love with Aizen-taichou so what you said, whether jokingly or not, really hurt her."
Hitsugaya rolled his eyes. Figures this all has to do with that stupid crush of hers. Every since she returned to Roukongai for the holidays, it was always Aizen-taichou this and Aizen-taichou that. It was so annoying!
"Oh taichou when you fall in love you'll understand what I mean."
He snorted. Love only happened in shojo manga and cheesy romance novel. He was definitely not going to act like an idiot and prance about singing of his dying love.
"Anyway taichou just apologize."
And so he found himself at the Fifth Division headquarters once again, an apology on the brick of his tongue. Once again she wouldn't see him but Hitsugaya barged in just like he did all those weeks ago.
He shuffled his feet, staring at the floor. Hinamori sat behind her desk, watching him carefully anticipating something but say nothing.
Her brown eyes continued to gaze at him.
"I-I… brought you some peaches from Roukongai. I'll stop by some other time and give them to you."
She turned back to her work.
Silently Hitsugaya closed the door and walked back to his office.