Disclaimer: I don't own Bleach or Pokemon.
Notes: I wrote this crossover purely for the lulz and to get this scene out of my head. (Crossposting this story to from the capslock_ulori community over on Livejournal.)
Orihime sighed as she sat in one of the overstuffed chairs near the entrance of the poke-center. Closing her eyes, she thought about all that had happened today. Battles, battles, and more battles. It seemed like all she'd been doing for the past three days was walking, battling, and catching sleep and a quick meal whenever she could. She'd never realized how tedious it could be to be a trainer, and after the day she'd had, she almost wished she hadn't left her hotel room that morning.
Bending down, Orihime placed her knapsack on the floor beside her. Pausing a moment, she glanced hesitantly at the pokeball nestled in the side pocket of her bag. Biting her lip, Orihime wrestled with the decision of whether to let Ulqui out of his ball. The nurse had said he'd fully recovered from their earlier battles, but Orihime was still a bit nervous about bringing him out so soon after his treatment.
Another moment of indecision passed before Orihime made up her mind. It would be okay to bring Ulqui out as long as she let him rest. Nodding sternly, she plucked the pokeball from the side pocket of her bag and sat back in her chair. Placing the pokeball in her lap, she pressed the small button to release the Bleachmon inside.
With a flash of green light, Ulqui appeared in her lap, his expression as dead-pan as she'd ever seen it. By now, Orihime had realized that Ulqui always looked like that, and would probably never change. It didn't really bother her all that much, though. To be honest, she found his constant look of sadness and boredom to be rather cute. Not like she'd actually tell him, however.
"Ulqui-Ulqui." Ulqui said, sounding tired but otherwise well. He stood steadily on his owner's knees, staring up at her with wide green eyes and his hands planted firmly in his pockets. This, too, was something he did constantly, but it was apparently a trait shared among all Ulquis, so Orihime didn't let it bother her.
"Hello Ulqui." Orihime said cheerfully, tucking the pokeball between her leg and the arm of the chair. "How are you feeling?"
"Ul-Ulqui." He answered, moving to sit on her lap.
"That's good." Orihime said, smiling as she helped him get settled. When Ulqui was resting against her belly, Orihime bent to the side to reach into her bag, making sure to keep one hand on her Bleachmon to steady him. Rooting through the various items in her bag, she stopped when she felt something squish between her fingers. Gripping the object, she pulled it out and showed it to Ulqui.
"I bought this while you were being treated." She said, holding the plastic-wrapped piece of pokesnack cake for Ulqui to see. "One of the ladies at the front desk said you'd like this, and that it would help you feel better. Do you want to try some?"
Ulqui eyed the snack for a moment before looking up at his owner, offering a quiet, "Ulqui" in answer.
Taking that as a "Yes", Orihime unwrapped the yellow cake. Balling up the used plastic, she set it beside the pokeball at her hip. As she moved to hand the snack to her Ulqui, Orihime paused. Watching the quiet Bleachmon, she could see that he wasn't making any move to take his hands from his pockets. Did he usually eat with his hands? She wasn't sure. Granted, she'd only had Ulqui for a little over a week now and hadn't actually watched him eat before, but still.
Kicking herself for not paying proper attention to her Bleachmon's eating habits, Orihime wondered how she was going to go about feeding the pokesnack to her Ulqui.
"Err, would you like me to hold it for you?" She asked, unsure. When he did nothing but stare up at her, Orihime knew she'd have to make this decision for herself.
"Alright, then." She said, trying to sound cheerful. "I think I'll just hold it for you. That sounds like the easiest way to do this."
After a bit of repositioning in the chair, Orihime lifted the cake to her Ulqui's mouth and waited for him to react. She watched as he blinked up at her for a bit, before finally looking at the cake and taking a small bite. As he chewed, she smiled brightly, glad that she had read his needs correctly.
The two of them sat in comfortable silence for awhile, Ulqui eating his pokesnack slowly while Orihime held it in front of him. As Ulqui was finishing the piece of cake, Orihime heard the bell on the poke-center's door chime loudly. Glancing over, she almost fell out of her chair when she saw Rukia walking in, her Ichi wandering around close to her legs.
"R-Rukia!" Orihime exclaimed, shocked to see the other girl so soon. "I didn't know you were in this town!"
Rukia looked over when she heard her name, her eyes lighting up when she saw her friend and rival. "Orihime!" She answered, waving as she walked over. "Yeah, Ichi and I just got here a few minutes ago. How are you doing?" She asked, glancing down quickly at the Ulqui sitting on Orihime's lap. Rukia was a bit surprised to notice that he was glaring – not at her, but at her Ichi who was poking around near Orihime's bag. While normally such a look would make her worry, the effect was currently being diminished by the presence of food crumbs on the Bleachmon's chin and cheeks.
"I'm fine." Orihime answered, oblivious to her Ulqui and the murderous intent brewing behind his bright green eyes. "Ulqui and I were just resting. After the day we've had, I think we both deserve it."
"You've had a bit of a long day, huh?" Rukia asked, smiling pleasantly at the other girl. "Well, I guess those kinds of days are to be expected when you're a Bleachmon trainer."
"Yeah, I guess so." Orihime sighed, glancing down at her Ulqui. Noticing the crumbs around his mouth, she moved to gently wipe them away with her shirt sleeve. When he didn't look up at the contact, Orihime followed his gaze to Rukia's Ichi, who was currently playing with the ties on her bag.
Realizing that this may get him into trouble, Orihime reached down and grabbed her bag, pulling it from Ichi's grasp. She felt guilty when the orange-haired Bleachmon pouted at her for taking away his new-found toy, but she knew it was for the best. The poor thing might choke himself on the pull-strings if he wasn't careful.
Setting the bag on the arm of the chair, Orihime turned to Rukia once more. Stifling a sudden yawn, she figured that her exhaustion was finally catching up with her.
"Sorry Rukia." Orihime apologized, her voice sounding tired. "I know it's rude to run off like this after seeing you again, but Ulqui and I should get back to our hotel room. We're both tired and could probably use a nap."
"That's okay." Rukia said, calling her Ichi back over to her. "We should probably go, too. I wanted to stock-up on potions and then try to catch the other trainers before they leave town."
"Be careful, okay?" Orihime called, watching as the other trainer moved away toward the potions on the front counter.
"We will!" Rukia answered, waving good-bye before turning to talk to the nurse about purchasing battle supplies, her Ichi flitting about near her knees.
Turning her attention back to Ulqui, Orihime grinned down at him. "Are you ready to go back to our room?" She asked him.
"Ulqui-Ul." He answered, standing up a bit unsteadily. Helping him keep his balance, Orihime carefully packed the empty pokeball and plastic wrap into her bag. When she was finished, she placed her bag on her shoulder and scooped Ulqui into her arms, holding him close as she stood from the chair.
Stretching for a moment, Orihime groaned as her back cracked. With the thought of a comfy bed awaiting her, she made her way out of the poke-center, listening to the door chimes as they rattled noisily behind her.
End Notes: I'll probably just keep adding new ficlets to this story via chapters. So, chapter 2 will be a sort-of continuation of this story, along with chapter 3, chapter 4, etc.