i dont own bleach.

oh lawd. been a while, huh? sorry about that... but here it is, actually finished! :D hope you all enjoy the final installment.


The CD's still playing. We're just lying there.


"You got any more shit like that?"

"Sure. Lots. I got tons of CDs." I pause. "Er, tomorrow's Sunday, and I don't have school. So. Um. We can just listen to some stuff, and figure out…what you like. If you want."

Grimmjow closes his eyes and he thinks. For a second I'm scared that he'll sneer at me and brush it off. But he grins and those brilliant blue eyes flash at me and he says, "Yeah, why the fuck not."

And it's stupid and irrational and I shouldn't feel it, but the world seems much brighter afterwards.

For hours, we just listen. We lie there, on my bed, silent. Hours and hours and hours. I don't even know how many CDs we go through. Dozens, at least.

Grimmjow surprises me by preferring jazz to anything else. He likes classical, too. Pop irritates him; techno and dance music almost made him throw my stereo out the window. I would've thought he'd be the kinda guy to be all into heavy metal and punk rock – I could just see him dressed up like that, I dunno why – but no. Something smooth, melodic, relaxing: that seems to be more his thing.

I can just see him in my head now, stretched back on a sofa or on a bed with his arms crossed behind his head, eyes closed and listening to some Miles Davis or Mozart, tapping his foot in time to the beat. He's not what I imagined he would be at all. When he wears human clothes he keeps it simple and pretty elegant. He lets the hair and the eyes talk for him. He's got good taste, and it weirds me out. He looks like he should be trashy.

Right now, he's picking out clothes carefully. He takes his time when he does this, compares shirts to sweaters, matches the shoes and the belt, shit like that.

"Oi, that's my shirt!"

Grimmjow just smirks at me. It's his default expression but it's still irritating. "Yeah, but I suit it better. Green is not a good color on you."

"Oh yeah? And since when did you get to be the world's leading fashion expert?" I ask, snatching the shirt out of his hands and shoving it back in a drawer. "If you're gonna live here permanently, we need to get you some stuff."

"Who says I'm living here?" Grimmjow says, raising an eyebrow.

Those little words just make my stomach drop to my toes. My ears are burning, and for a second I can't say anything, there's a lump in my throat so big it's twisting everything up. I cough, and I don't look at him when I say, "No one. If you're not living here, piss off."

It comes out bitter and angry.

What the hell. Why do I even care where he lives?

"Can I?"

"Can you what?" I snap.

"Live here."

It brings me up short. I don't know what to say. I settle for, "But you stay with Urahara."

"I've had enough of that creep," Grimmjow says, scowling. "I hate him and those other fucking shinigami. They piss me off."

"I know that. Everyone pisses you off, even I piss you off!"

"Yeah, but at least with you I get sex." He grins and stretches, and I can feel my face go completely blank.

It's brutally simple.

At least with you I get sex.

Of course, that's the only reason he'd stay.

"No," I say. "Go back to Urahara. This place is crazy enough as it is."


"Here." I shove some CDs into his arms and force him out the door. "Go listen to them over there. I've got homework to do."

"Fuck, hey-"

"Grimmjow, get the hell out."

Grimmjow takes one look at my face and frowns. He doesn't go. He whines and grumbles and curses until he's out the door, and then I lean against it and wait until I know he's gone away.

I hold my head in my hands. I can feel how soft his hair is through my fingers, how smooth his skin is against mine. His breath is hot against the back of my neck and his arms wind around my waist. We fit together perfectly. Dirty orange light comes through the curtains and I can't sleep at all, because I can feel everything. His chest moving as he breathes. His skin is warm, like a human's.

I don't know what to do.

This is so completely wrong. I need to stop.

I need to stop this.

I need to, but I don't want to. And I can't.

How the hell do you stop yourself falling from a cliff, anyway? I've looked over the edge. I saw the ground, I saw the distance. I've measured everything up, the good and the bad. I thought I knew what the fuck I was doing.

And I jumped anyway.

This is all my own fault. I can't expect anyone else to help me or to tell me what to do. I'll need to help myself.

And you see, I've told this to myself at least five million times before. I can never do it. I can't ever-


I go back to my room, sit down on my bed and hold my head in my hands. I want this to end. I want it to go on forever. I wish I'd never started it and at the same time I don't regret a thing.

How is it possible that I could feel all of this? All these conflicting, confusing things? I don't get it. He's a psychopath, he's insane, murderous, violent. He doesn't even have any sort of charm to make up for it. No one should feel anything for someone like that, for someone so rude and unapologetic about it.

And yet, here I am.

What do you call it, when you're kind of on the edge of love? You're tiptoeing across the precipice, along the edge of the cliff. You can't see the sea beneath, you don't know if it's calm or stormy. You want to fall but you're scared: what if there's no one falling with you? What if there's no one to catch you?

What if, in the end, all you do is drown? There's no lifeline, no one to help you.

That's what I'm doing. I'm drowning.

And Grimmjow's not there to drown with me.

The sky is getting darker. I'm lying on my bed and watching the ceiling turn from gray to dark blue as the sun sets and takes its warmth with it. It's so quiet in my room that I think I can even hear my heartbeat.

Does Grimmjow have a heart?

I wonder about that a lot. I mean, he bleeds and everything, so he has a circulatory system. He must have. But what pumps the blood around his body? I don't understand it. Plus there's that giant hole in his gut but I really prefer not to think about it, that thing gives me the creeps.

The sudden shriek of my shinigami badge almost gives me a heart attack and I fall off my bed, gasping. I take the badge in my hand and I stare at it for a while, while it screams and screams. Then I press it to my chest and there it is, that dizzying, giddy feeling of weightlessness as my soul is pushed out of my body.

It always takes a second for everything to settle. My head has to stop spinning, I have to catch my breath; but after that, I usually shoot into action. I have to save the day, right?

This time though, I just stand there, looking at my body. It's lying on the floor of my bedroom, almost completely motionless. My eyes are closed. My chest is hardly rising. I look dead. The badge is still screaming.

I swallow and shake my head. This is stupid. There are hollows out there, hunting innocent souls. I'm there to stop that. What am I doing, just standing in my room like an idiot? People might already be hurt.

One last look at my body. I haul it up onto my bed and arrange it to look like I'm sleeping. I could use Kon but for some reason, tonight I'm not in the mood. I open the window, feel the cold air on my face. Without another thought in my head I frown, and leave.

I'm lying on the roof and the sun is setting. It's getting cold. The sky is all sorts of weird fucking colors. I've never seen anything like it before – pink and orange and yellow and red.

What the fuck, how is that even possible.

The human world is fucking insane. Even more than Hueco Mundo. At least there, things were simple.

Here, everything is fucked up. Sunsets and trees, cars and education and jobs. Diseases. Travel. Different countries and languages, different food, different people. It's all like…

I don't know how to describe. Like I've been blind until now. And now I've opened my eyes and all I can see is a gigantic fucking rainbow.

And I'm not sure I like it.

This place is crazy. Humans are crazy.

A little part of me still wishes I was a hollow. It wants to go back to the endless night and the hunger and the hunting. A simple life. Nothing complicated, like now. Because I'm feeling weird, new things, and I don't know what to call them.

I've heard of things like love and affection and caring. I knew the words. I didn't know the feeling.

Not until now.


The shopkeeper again. I look down at him; he's peering up at me, fan shading his face.

"It's dinner time."

"I'll get my own goddamn food."

He shrugs. "Suit yourself."

He goes back inside, leaving me on my own. An icy wind blows and I wrap my arms around myself, bringing my knees up to my chest. I watch the city, watch as the sky turns orange-blue and lights twinkle on in buildings.

I want to go back to Kurosaki's. That little blonde sister of his makes good food. Here, it's a pile of shit.

And I like his bed. His bathroom is bigger, and doesn't smell suspicious like the one here. His house is…better. More…

More like a home.

I want to listen to more of that peeno stuff, too. Chopeen, or Chopin, or whatever. I like him. And the saxophome thingy.

The thing is, though, when I listen to that music I feel strange. Like everything's twisted up inside me. It hurts, but in a good way. Like hands are squeezing something inside my chest but really gently.

Something crackles in the air and the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end. Kurosaki. He's in shinigami form. I feel his energy wash over me like warm water and those hands squeeze harder. I let out a deep breath and mist comes out of my mouth.

I watch it, fascinated. It kinds of drifts in the air for a bit before disappearing and I wonder where it goes. Kurosaki told me it was just water vapor or something like that but the fact is, shit like that still weirds me out.

The human world in general does. Ice falling from the sky: snow. Rain. Neon lights flashing and flashing all through the night. All these sounds, sights, colors; I'm living inside a rainbow. It gives me a fucking headache but I can't stop looking. I want to see, touch, taste, hear everything.

That freezing wind cuts through me again and I huddle closer to myself. It feels like the night is crushing me.

It was never like that, before.

In Hueco Mundo.

It was always night-time there, always dark. A sickle moon hanging in the sky at a crazy angle, dry grating sand beneath my feet, nothing but silence, hot blood on my hands and in my mouth; that was my life. Nothing like this.

I stand up and jump off the edge of the roof. It isn't really that high but when I drop down to the ground a shock runs up through my legs anyway, and I think about discarding this sack of useless meat they call a fake body. A million reasons why I should run through my head.

In the end I don't. I stuff my hands into the pockets of the leather jacket I stole from Kurosaki this morning and I walk.

I walk and walk and walk. There's no direction in my head, no purpose, no thinking about where I'm going. Above me in the trees, leaves are turning gold and yellow and red. Some of them fall to the ground like flakes of rust, swirling and twisting in the wind.

One drifts past me lazily. It's bright orange. I stop and watch it as it floats to the ground, and then I go and pick it up, turning it in my fingers. There aren't any dead parts on this leaf, no spots or blemishes. It's perfect.

I keep it and start walking again.

It gets colder.

It's only fall, why the fuck am I freezing my nuts off so fucking soon?

The sky is just about completely black when I stop. I'm on a tall grassy hill which overlooks the town. The ground is wet but I lie down anyway, stretched out on my back with my legs and arms spread-eagled, and I stare at the sky and try to count how many stars there are. I lose count for the tenth time and after that I feel my eyes slowly closing.

The sand is freezing cold and if I hadn't had iron skin, my feet would be ripped to shreds already.

But I have four feet.

No, wait. Not feet – paws.

I'm walking on four legs. My Adjuchas form.

I can't feel the wind, the cold, the warmth. My iron shell protects me from everything.

My eyes search for prey and find nothing.

There is no wind in this place but sand somehow blows up against my body, into my face and eyes. It stings. I growl and blink, eyes watering, and when I open my eyes again and look in front of me my whole body freezes.

Kurosaki is there.

He's sitting on the grass – on the grass. We're in some sort of park now. For some reason, I don't question it.

So Kurosaki's sitting on some grass under a tree, legs crossed, leaning back on his arms with his head tipped back and his eyes closed. Leaves are falling but they don't touch him.

I move one step forward and he seems to sense it, because he opens his eyes and looks at me directly, face carefully blank. Then after a split second he smiles. A real smile, full and radiant and toothy – it makes his eyes sparkle. He has dimples. That thing in my chest hurts again.

Kurosaki starts speaking but I can't hear what he's saying. His voice comes out warped and watery, and everything just goes over my head. I'm crawling forward slowly on all fours, still in my panther form. My claws sink into the soft green grass and it bleeds red.

His legs are stretched out in front of him now. He's still smiling. When he smiles it's the most beautiful thing in the world. I keep going, keep moving to him, but he stays so far away.

I can't reach him.

I keep moving, but he is always one step ahead.

Out of nowhere I find myself lying on my back. I'm human. I'm staring up at the sun, blindingly bright in the sky, and I feel someone beside me and I know instantly it's him.

It's him, it's only ever been him, it will only ever be him.

I roll over and straddle Kurosaki's hips. He doesn't open his eyes. There's a hint of a smile touching at the corners of his mouth, though, and I have to touch it. My fingers trail over his mouth, down his chin, down his neck, and splay out across his chest. I can feel his heart beating, steady and strong and constant.

The taste of his blood fills my mouth. I close my eyes, let my head fall back, I feel him inside me and around me. His breathing, harsh and short, fingers tugging at my hair, legs wrapping around my waist – his skin is slick with sweat and I slide my hand down the middle of his chest.

My head lowers and I kiss his neck. My lips feel his pulse beating furiously.

"Go ahead."

Kurosaki's voice is raspy, soft with exhaustion and arousal.


"Do it," he says, eyes glowing contentedly. He's smiling again and when he's like that, there's nothing I wouldn't do for him. "I know you want to."

"Want to what? What the fuck are you talking about?"

One of his hands cups the back of my head and forces it to his throat. I understand what I'm meant to do. My mouth opens of its own accord and somehow, I know that my teeth aren't teeth anymore.

They're fangs.

This time the taste of blood isn't a mere memory: hot, salty liquid coats my lips and tongue, trickling down my chin. My teeth are sinking into his neck, into muscle and sinew and bone and I moan and-

I wake up and lie completely still, my breaths coming deep and fast. Sweat slides off my forehead. My eyes are wide. I'm covered in water – what is it called, dew?

What a fucking retarded name.

It's so damn cold. I hate the cold.

When I'm with Kurosaki, I'm never cold. Why am I not with him right now?

Wait, did I kill him? Was that just a dream? Did I kill Kurosaki for real?

Fuck. Shit.

Fear rips through me and for a moment I really believe that I did. That he's dead. That I finally killed him.

But no, I feel that crackle of warm energy fizzle through me. I feel his power, his spirit. He's still alive. The scent of his spiritual power invades me and that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach calms down. I sit up and my head throbs fiercely.

Shit. My chest is hurting again and I don't know what it means.

No, I'm lying to myself. I know what the fuck this means. I just-

I sit up, wiping my face with one hand. It's freezing cold and almost numb. Something tickles in my nose and then all of a sudden Jesus fucking Christ my face almost blows right off my head and I make this weird gusty wet sound, this, like, fuck, I can't describe it, it's too weird, and I get up and I run – I run straight back to Kurosaki's place, because I have no fucking clue what just happened. All the way, my head pounds, I feel dizzy, weak like my bones have halfway turned to water.

They never lock the back door. I vault over the fence and I run straight into the house, pound up the stairs and barge into his room.

"Fuck, Kurosaki!"

He jumps, almost falling off his bed. "Shi- Grimmjow! What the hell?"

I grab his shoulders and shake him, almost wild. "What the fuck just happened to me!"

"How the hell should I know! What are you talking about, you idiot?"

"I was just outside and then I made this weird sound and I need to know what the fuck it is!" I snarl at him, fingers curling in his shirt. Shit, my head hurts so fucking bad.

"You were outside?" he asks incredulously, "Grimmjow, it's like six in the morning, were you outside all night? Is that why your hair's wet?"

"How the fuck should I kn – shit, it's - shit shit – " There it was again, like a feather brushing against the inside of my nose. Ticklish. Infuriating.

"What?" Kurosaki's eyes are wide with panic. "What is it?"

Before I can answer that tickling feeling in my nose becomes another explosion of sound. My head is spinning, my eyes are watering, and disgusting slimy stuff is coming out of my nose.

"That!" I shout at him, when I recover. "What the fuck is that!"

He blinks. "Uh…"

"Answer me goddammit!" I'm shaking him again, like he's a rag-doll. I'm almost frothing at the mouth.

"Grimmjow, calm down." Kurosaki's voice is low and he cups my face with his hands, mouth twisting like he's trying not to grin.

"This isn't funny, shithead!"

"Grimmjow, all you did was sneeze!"

"What? What the fuck is that?"

"It's like something that you do when you're sick or something. It's nothing bad, OK? Your head's not gonna blow up, you've just…" Kurosaki trails off, uncertain.

"I've just what? Fucking tell me!"

"You just…have a cold."

A short silence follows, where I look at him, not understanding, and he doesn't seem like he does either.

"I have a what?" I ask.

"You have a cold," Kurosaki says slowly. "Uh…you know what that is, right? You should have learned what that is by now- but, I mean, how…how long've you lived in the human world, now? I can't remember."

"How the fuck should I know? I have no fucking clue how your stupid time system works. It was cold like this the first time I came here, that's all I remember."

"A year? You've been here about a year, then?"

"I dunno, you fuckhead," I snap. "But what the fuck is a 'cold' and why do I have one?"

"It's like…well, it's…basically, you're sick." He sees the look on my face and adds, "Only a little, though! All you have to do is drink lots of liquids and keep warm and it should go away after a while."

"But why the fuck did I get one? I don't fucking want it!

"It's not like you have a choice in the matter, moron! You shouldn't have stayed outside in the cold like you did, you were practically asking for it!"

"Fuck y-"

I can't swear at him properly because I 'sneeze' again and this time, no matter what Kurosaki tells me, I'm sure I'm gonna spontaneously combust there and then. It's so loud my whole body shakes with it. My eyes close and I sag, falling forward.

"Whoa, there!" I feel Kurosaki's strong, warm arms around my shoulders. "Jeez, Grimmjow, you really are sick. You're gonna…you have to stay in bed for a few days. I'll take you to Urahara's in a few hou-"

"No!" My voice is slurred. "F…fuck that. Hate him. I…I wanna…stay here."


I can't speak, so I nod into his neck. He smells like he just had a shower. So good. His skin, so smooth. Shaved today, too.


Sounds like he's far away.

Why is he always so far away? I want him close.

Closer to me.

"Grimmjow, hey-"

'M so fuck'n tired…

"Grimmjow, don't pass ou - ah, fuck…"

Grimmjow refuses to go anywhere else for the next week, and stays wrapped up in about three hundred blankets in my bed. He groans, he grumbles, he complains: he's too hot, he's too cold, he's hungry, he's horny, I'm not paying enough attention to him, so on so forth. He is the epitome of a spoiled, selfish child.

Sometimes I just want to take a butcher's knife to his head and hack away. I feel like that around him most of the time, to be honest. He just seriously pisses me off even without trying, and the thing is, he loves to try.

There are moments, though, that make up for everything else. Moments like when we take a bath together and he's almost falling asleep in the water and snoozes with his head on my shoulder; when he's too weak to eat by himself and I have to spoon-feed him some chicken soup to keep his strength up; when he gets too cold at night, even with a mountain of covers, and clings to me like a limpet. All I can do then is stroke his back, run my fingers through his hair, whisper something soothing into his ear so that he doesn't whine all the damn time.

Like right now. Whine, bitch, moan, piss me off – that's all he does. He's heavy as fuck and lazy to boot, so I practically drag him everywhere with me because he won't let go of me. He won't let me out of his sight. Possessive, jealous, clingy – let's add those to his list of faults, shall we?

I wonder, why do I do this to myself. Why do I stay with him? Why do I keep protecting him?

These are the thoughts that are running through my head. I'm not watching him sleep, exactly; I'm just sitting there while he's stretched out over my lap and I'm just gazing at him absentmindedly.

It's coming up to twilight, I guess. I dunno it's getting dark, that's twilight right? The street lights outside are lighting up but I can't see my textbook clearly. I mean, I'm trying to study but I can't balance my book on my lap because Grimmjow's head is in the way.

After struggling for about ten minutes, trying to see in the bad light, I give up. It feels like everything is too slippery for my mind to hold onto. Maths, Chemistry, History. Nothing's staying in my head. I sigh and throw my book to the side, and Grimmjow takes that moment to mumble under his breath and tighten his hold on me.

I glance down at him. His head is turned at a weird angle and I can see the curve of his lips, his cheekbone, the way his eyes move under the eyelids. His hair is greasy and lanky, there are shadows under his eyes and his skin is stretched tight and pale over his bones. He looks frankly awful.

The thought suddenly comes to me: has he ever been sick before in his life?

Probably not. Did sickness exist in Hueco Mundo? Colds, the flu, things like that? Things like having a cough or getting chickenpox, things like that happen all the time here in the human world, how does he even deal with it?

Grimmjow frowns a little and shifts. My hand moves through his hair. My fingers dig into his scalp and his mouth falls open a little bit. He lets out a little sigh and frowns deeper, and I see wrinkles on his forehead and around his eyes that hadn't been there just a few months ago.

He's aged. He's been here maybe about a year but already he's looking older, but I hadn't ever noticed before and it just suddenly hits me now like a punch to the stomach.

This must be hard for him too.

A new world. New people. New rules, new codes, everything. What you can and can't do or say. I know about living in this world, my family does, everyone here except Grimmjow does. Compared to us he knows nothing. He still can't read or write. He is basically still a child here.

Why does that thought hurt so much?

I get the weirdest feeling. Like I want to cry or something. Which is ridiculous, why would I ever cry over someone like him? I don't understand it. I don't want to take care of him like a parent, I don't have time to bring up a child as well as everything else. I just can't.

A sigh escapes me and it feels like it comes from my bones. I rub my face; my eyes are drooping closed, I'm so tired. I need to sleep.

The blankets are warmed already from Grimmjow's body heat. I pull them up over both of us and settle down more comfortably, and then Grimmjow snorts and blearily opens his eyes, looking confused.

"Wha's time?" he mumbles, squinting at me.

"Dunno, late. I'm going to sleep."

He looks down, and the expression on his face – I've never seen anyone look so sad. "'M tired."

The anger and frustration softens at the hopeless sound of his voice. I pull him closer, try to smile. "I know. I'm sorry. Let's try to get some sleep, yeah?"

"'M hungry too."


"I don't hate you." It comes out plain and simple, no anger, no tenderness, just words spoken truthfully.

For a second I can't speak. Then I say, "I don't hate you either."

He's on top of me, on his hands and knees. My knees are around his waist, legs wrapped around him. He slides out of me slowly, pushes back in until I can feel his flesh press against mine and his hard, throbbing cock inside me touches something that makes me see white.

We are covered in sweat. No talking, just grunts and cut-off moans and a fuckload of swearing from his filthy mouth that just heats me up more. The bed squeaks noisily and I don't care who hears it.

Grimmjow starts picking up the pace, starts slamming into me roughly and all I can do is arch my back and stuff my fist in my mouth to stop from crying out. Over and over again. His hands are on my throat, squeezing.

I don't stop him. I don't want to stop him.

My toes curl. Muscles tense, my eyes roll back into my head. I feel like I'm dying.

Grimmjow leans down, presses his forehead against mine.

"Fuckin' hate you, Kurosaki," he breathes, grabbing my face, kissing down from my forehead to my neck.

"Hate you too," I say, gasping, sliding my hands through his sweaty hair. "Hate you so fucking much."

Now his hands are on my hips, gripping them so tight I know I'll have bruises soon.

"Hate me harder," I moan, grinding against him, "more, I'm almost there-"

"Ah, yeah, fuck, yes-"

"Oh god-"

"I don't hate you," I say again. Grimmjow blinks at me slowly, then closes his eyes. I think I see a tiny smile on his face.

"What medicine did you even take?" I ask him. "You shouldn't be this sleepy, you should be recovering by now. It's been more than a week, right?"

"Dunno," he says. "I took some pills from your dad's office."

A pause.

"And what the hell were these pills?"

"No fucking clue."

Oh crap. What has he done now? "Can you even remember what they were called?"

"Nope." Grimmjow's electric blue eyes are cracked open and he's openly grinning now. "They were blue though. And weird shaped. And make me horny."

"Blue? You - oh my god."

He just laughs, and there's that edge of craziness back again. It surprises me how glad I am to hear it.

"Grimmjow, did you take the Viagra?"

That smile, that wicked maddened smile, there it is.

It's back. He's back.

"I dunno," he says, cocking his head to the side suggestively. "What does it do?"

I stare at him for a second and I feel an answering smirk spread across my face.

"Well, maybe…"

What am I even doing? He's probably still sick!

"Maybe I could show you," I say.

It isn't until we're both lying naked in bed hours later, panting, still sweating, almost falling asleep, that I realize Grimmjow will probably have given me his cold.

"You dick," I say, "you totally did that on purpose."

"I didn't eat any Veegra."



"You just didn't want to suffer alone, then?" I'm only teasing but his face darkens anyway. I regret the words instantly.

"Don't care about being alone," he mutters, "since I've always been alone anyway. You get used to it."

I've always been alone anyway.

You're not alone, Grimmjow. I'm always here for you. Stupid prick.

I love you.

"But you're not alone anymore, so you can stop moping now," I say.

"Shut up, I ain't moping."

I open my mouth and the word are ready to come out. But they stick in my throat, and instead of telling him that I'm in love with him I cough awkwardly and kiss him messily, and when I pull back he's smirking again. He's still sick, but he's still Grimmjow. He might have moments of weakness but he always recovers. Always a spiteful remark, a crazy smile, that evil look in his eyes. It's been a long time since I've hated any of that.

To be honest, I don't know what I would do if he stopped being himself. Stopped being violent and offensive and just about insane. I need, I love, this crazy, reckless, stupid person.

And yet, I feel more pathetic than I've ever felt before in my life. Saying those words takes more bravery than it takes to battle a thousand Espada. I have never felt so weak.

"I can't say it," I tell him.

"You don't have to."

Words fail me again. I stare into his eyes, into those bright blue eyes, the most beautiful things I've ever seen, and I can feel it; he knows.

He knows that I love him.

Grimmjow stares straight back at me. He holds my gaze for what seems like years. In those eyes, something flashes; a fire, a spark, answering the one in my own heart. He presses his forehead against mine and everything that he wants to say but can't is expressed right there in his eyes.

Finally, finally, after so long, my body doesn't feel so heavy. I don't feel like one person drowning helplessly in the sea anymore.

Grimmjow is there, drowning with me.