Special thanks to Ilovekuramatoo much and Jay Kashiki for writing the kissing scene.

Please take time to check out their writing too =).

Tensa Zangetsu/FemIchi by request from my 800th reviewer Kaiser's angel! Thank you for the support!

Warnings for the chapter; Child Abuse (acts are not described in great detail so don't freak out on me please=), Angst, sexual situations. If it bothers you, please don't go any further. Respectfully, Fuzzibunniez

"Glass House"

"We fight to cover up the scars
From our charade
There's a war between who we are
And who we make believe
It's over now, we're fallen' but...

You alone, You can see right through
This glass house we call home
You alone, You can take away the pain
Yeah, You have shown, You can break right through this glass house of our souls
Make us whole again, Make us whole

I, I'm running to escape the walls
That have trapped this heart in
The door is open, please come save me
I, I never want to hide behind
The disguise that I've become
That I've become

Cause You alone, You can take away the pain
Yeah, You have shown, You can find a way to change
Yeah, You alone, You can see right through
This glass house of our souls
Make us whole again..." Glass House By Red

The clicking sound on glass stirs an orange-haired girl snuggled deep within a large duvet from her sleep. "I'm coming." she mutters lifting back the white down blanket to rub at her eyes. It's the third time this week she has been awoken up in the middle of the night. It isn't new to be dragging her feet across her room to open the window. She's been letting in the next door neighbor since they were kids.

Still groggy from a fantastic dream about being a pink frosted doughnut floating in a river of coffee the girl forgets that she is in her PJ's and slides open the curtains of her window. Her eyes lock on the face of her best friend and the shivering coat-less teenager standing to the side of her window shutters. "Tensa... I leave the window unlocked for you." she says stepping back so he can duck inside. "Just come in whenever you need to."

"I had to walk around the block a bit to cool off first." Tensa says shivering to his bones. Wet feet, socks, pants, even his hair is drenched from the falling snow. "I-Ichigo... I am sor-"

"You hungry?" Ichigo eagerly interrupts him from apologizing. "Don't do it... Don't get upset... and don't let it show." This person has apologized his whole life for having the family he does. It makes her sick but, she promised to not say anything to her father or mother about it. That simple crossing of fingers connected her at the time when she was starving for a friend.

When you are eight, it's so easy to make promises.

"Swear you won't tell!"

"I swear..."

As a kid you only think about what is in front of you. That is as far as your mind can stretch.

Lie and you stick a needle in your eye...

"I'm starving."

You don't think about growing up and the result of a tiny childhood promise. The 'future' is a simple as the next grade in school. It's the year you start playing soccer, the time when you are dared to jump the fence of your creepy neighbor's house to ring the bell. Or when you are kissed for the first time in a closet after your Nana's funeral and have nightmare's about the smelly old woman coming after you with bottle of Liquid Dial. Ugh, that shit is so nasty it gets in your nose you smell it for hours after. Hell, Ichigo can still smell it.

Nine years later the vow Ichigo made with Tensa that night is the biggest mistake she has ever made. It's too much. The bruises and the beatings. His parent's never stopped, her regret never stops. Fucking innocence. What a reckless way to polish the dirty truth.

For those who never saw the darkness reaching out and claiming the neighbor boy, childhood memories are nostalgic happy times. Adults write books and movies telling of the simplicity with a warm glow in our hearts. Ichigo will never look back on her childhood longing for the simple days of snow days and lemonade stands. No, the first time she saw Tensa's dad back hand him on the back porch as the sun began to set everything changed.

Terrified and clinging to her favorite ball that rolled it's way over to their property the eight year old in her crumpled to her knees in fear. She couldn't understand why. The picture in her head of the smiling Tensa was shattered and replaced by a small boy curling up in a ball as his father kicks him in the back.

"Why is that happening?" Her own parent's never hit her. Instinctively Ichigo understood what was happening to the neighbor boy was wrong and the violence displayed in front of her dull brown eyes is impossible to accept. Hidden under a hydrangea she clamps her eyes shut, covers her mouth and lets the tears spill down her cheeks.

"You alright in there?"

Forcing her eyes to open she looks up to see Tensa standing their with an open hand to help her up. "Your eyes..." No... childhood for Ichigo will always be stained by this moment.

"It's just a bruise it'll go away before long." he smiles helping her out of the bush and back to her own yard.

"They are the same." Ichigo says pointing a finger to the hydrangeas. "Sad blue... you are both," she lifts her other hand gingerly up to his dirtied face. "Sad blue."

"I think you mean azure blue." Tensa replies trying to hide his embarrassment at being touched by such a cute girl with brilliant orange hair. "Now I need you to swear you won't tell anyone what you saw..." The words die away as her lips gently graze his swollen eyebrow. Something beautiful just gave him affection. "S-Swear you won't tell!"

Ichigo did promise him, and continued to promise under her breath each time she noticed marks or bruises on her friends body. After that day she stopped crying about anything at all. Instead she gave that up. How could she cry when her friend Tensa who needed saved more than anyone else refused to?

"Use my bath to warm up. I'll grab some snacks." she calls out walking towards her door and lifting a hand up to turn the knob only to pause just as her fingertips touch to cool metal. "If I say anything will he..." Shaking her head to clear away the spiderwebs Ichigo turns to give him a smile. "I need help with that Biology paper. So prepare yourself!" Ichigo gives him a faint wink before slipping out the door. Her legs manage to make three steps before dropping her towards a wall to slide down.

"Don't cry... Ichigo you have no right to cry. Your life is perfect. You have parents who love and protect you. SO NO CRYING!" Despite the mantra her palms slide down her face covering her eyes. "If I tell... I might lose him. I can't lose him..."


The clear, soft voice of her mother makes her pop up from the floor and whirl turn around. "Hi mom!" Instantly a smile plasters across her face. That's it. Smile so mom knows everything is fine. "I'm just grabbing a snack. Was I too loud?"

"Not at all." Masaki's eyes focus on her daughters face and the captive tears welling up in her eyes. "I was just feeling restless. Do I hear your shower?" she asks lifting a hand up towards her daughter's door.

"Ah! Y-Yes!" Ichigo steps back in front of her door protectively. "I was-" Slumping against the door she exhales a long sigh. "It's Tensa... I'm letting him use my shower." Ah shit here it comes. Flicking her eyes to the floor she waits for her mother to be shocked and disappointed in her.

"Ahh... I see." Putting a hand on Ichigo's shoulder she tilts her head with a serious expression on her face. "Should I help you make some sandwiches?"

"What?" she whispers in shock as her mother's lips turn up into a smile. Is this situation alright? "You aren't going freak out or lecture me on the evils of premarital sex?"

"I already know what I have taught you. You are my daughter." Masaki puts an arm around Ichigo as they walk down the back set of stairs that lead to the kitchen. "I have never known you to do anything halfheartedly. Besides..." Brandishing her cell phone she shoves it in front of Ichigo's face. "You have been sleeping with this boy since you were eight."

"You've know that long!" Thumbing through picture after picture Ichigo watches her and Tensa grow up. Each photo is practically identical; Ichigo laying on her stomach fast asleep with her arm dangling off the side of the bed Tensa's hand clinging to hers as he sleeps on a pile of blankets. "Mom.. I've never had sex with him."

"But he makes the 'I love you' face!" Masaki rubs her cheek against her daughter's making kissy sounds. "Chuuu~!"

"Ok, I think I'm getting a concussion from the intense bonding."

Twenty minutes later Ichigo pushes open her door with her foot. The heavy tray in her arms is overflowing with food almost knocking her over. Mom got a little carried away and made way too much food. "Hey, you are out already?"

"Yeah... need some help?" Tensa glides over to her and quickly takes the serving tray before Ichigo can argue with him. The orange-haired woman is about to fuss, and will love it. When Tensa looks at Ichigo it's like her entire being is simmering just under that tan skin. Any moment she could burst and surprise him.

"I-I could have managed, you know."

That's the girl he knows... the feisty little thing that he fished out of a hydrangea all those years ago is still in there. "I know." he replies returning the pout on her face with a warm smile. Even if he is miserable he can't show that to Ichigo, she worries enough as it is. "But I like helping you."

Setting down next to the low table he lays the tray out next to him and stares in shock at all the food. Doughnuts, cookies, three different kinds of sandwiches, streamed rice, with some left over fish, a napkin and even some fresh fruit are sliced up in a bowl miraculously crammed on the silver serving tray. "Damn..." Lifting up the napkin he reaches the a sandwich when a hand darts out to grab something. "Hungry too? You never eat with..." flicking his eyes to what she was reaching for. There a small square wrapper draws his eye. "Um, are you planning to seduce me?"

"No!" Ichigo nervously snatches the condom out of Tensa's hand madder than a hornet. "M-Mom must have done it when I wasn't looking. Damn her!" Clenching a fist, she starts to crush the wrapper in her hand. "Like I'm gonna fall for that trick."

So very amused at her reaction, and curious just how much Ichigo's mother knows Tensa snatches the condom back and waves it in the air between his fingers. "Is your mom telling us to have sex? I think I like Mrs. Kurosaki a lot more now."

"She is NOT! My mom just wants me to be safe! Safe sex! N-Not sex with you! Just anyone.. um no that isn't what I meant at all. Ah shit!" Now completely, utterly flustered beyond repair she stumbles over his waving arms and falls directly into his freshly washed lap. "Fuck!"

"Oh the things I could say..." he half teases putting a hand on her soft hair and nudging her right over his crotch. "The things... I really should say... HAHAH!" In a full laugh he doesn't see her head suddenly popping up clunking their heads together. "Ow..."

"Tensa are you hurt?" Climbing up his chest her hand instantly go for Tensa's chin. "Where?" she asks softly trying not to listen to the strange butterflies in her stomach when their eyes meet.

"Are you going to kiss it better like you used t-" He can't finish, her fists are already jabbing lightly at his chest where it actually does hurt.

Just for a second she notices him wince making her heart drop into her chest. "How bad is it?" Ichigo asks with round watery eyes full of concern. "Let me see." without waiting for his reply her fingers quickly unbutton the blue and white shirt.

"Ichigo is undressing me. Ohhhh, I'm being undressed by a hot chick in her bedroom. With her mother's permission." Irony is stalking Tensa Zangetsu; age seventeen, occupation high school student. Even more since he is totally in love with this girl. "I'm living every high school boys dream."

Ignoring him and totally focused on his chest Ichigo's face darkens at the bruises covering Tensa's chest. Words can't describe the horror of coming face to face with pain you didn't cause and are helpless to take away. Nothing you can say will fix it because keeping the secret is the price of his friendship. "Three more weeks." she whispers tenderly running the pad of her fingertips over one of the larger bruises. "Your birthday is so close... and they won't be able to-" The sentence dies unfinished in her throat. That isn't what she really wants to say. Lifting her gaze back to his ocean blue eyes she leans her head forward to tap her on his forehead. "It'll be alright. It'll be alright, Tensa."

Laced inside the gentle tremble of a feminine comforting voice are soft whispers of heartbreak, devotion, desperation... unspoken vows he knows Ichigo will never exhale. The silent strength piles up on Tensa unbearably heavy until his shoulders slump. The voice continues, softly saying the same thing over and over. It'll be alright, Tensa. It'll be alright... Ichigo's warm breath whispers over his lips, the body next to him is practically shivering all while she struggles in how to comfort him the most.

"I'll be alright, Ichigo." he finally says, curling his arms around her and holding her close for the first time since fourth grade. The faint scent of honeysuckle drifts up to cloud his thoughts, that light little flower haunts him. He loves the way she smells like she sleeps in a field of flowers. It's difficult to focus with Ichigo so close and smelling this good. Just as he is about to tilt his head down and kiss her hair she moves away turning her back on him. This is a habit he has witnessed many times.

"Now it's pop quiz time!" Ichigo forces a smile on her face and whirls around. "Biology is the bane of my existence. Help me Tensa."

"Alright, let's get you an A." he replies giving her a half smile. "It crushes me to see you dodging me."


Navigating high school as a child of the town drunk is as simple as learning how to vanish effectively. This means having no presence. Don't stand out, never make a scene and for the love of god don't be 'special' at anything. With this philosophy Tensa steps into his white school sneakers relishing in the fact that he has escaped totally unnoticed by anyone for his three years. No clubs, meetings, sports, or music, no need to impress anyone.

"Morning Tensa." Ichigo strolls up in her school uniform showing her curves in all the right places.

"Good morning, Ichigo." he replies shifting his gaze from her hips to the exposed skin of her neck. My god is she oblivious to just how tempting wearing her hair in a ponytail is to him. The neck of a woman is the most attractive spot. Smelling the faint perfume, and touching the drumming pulse point concealed under tan skin is something he is aching to experience with her. He wants her, but he can not have her. He can't... he just can't bare to touch her.

"How are you doing this morning?" Reaching her locker she opens it up and stuffs her street shoes inside. "D-Did you sleep well?"

"We saw each other fifteen minutes ago..." Tensa leans his head around her locker door and grins as two classmates walk past them. "I slept next to the most beautiful woman last night." He says rather loudly. Turning towards the two shocked faces of the girls walking past he can't help but add, "I quizzed her in Biology."

Ichigo slams her locker door shut and grabs Tensa by the arm dragging him into the stairwell. "What are you doing! They could say something and then your parents might separate us! I couldn't stand to be away from you!"

"They don't know it was you." Tensa says setting a hand on her shoulder. "Those girls don't even know my name. I'm a nobody. So it's alright, Ichigo."

"It's not alright!" she yells surprised at the echoing of her voice in the stairwell. "Listen to me! You aren't a nobody to me. You are everything!" Wrapping her arms around his chest she lets the tears captive in her eyes flow freely down her cheeks. "I know I only have three weeks left with you, but I'm greedy. I still want those three weeks."

"You're greedy about me?" His lips almost pinch the words to keep them from escaping. What Tensa is about to say will push them to break away or... "Ichigo..." But he has had enough of running from his problems. "are you in love with me?"


"Are you?" he asks again ignoring the approaching footsteps of students shuffling their feet down the steps towards her. Will the time they have fade like the bruises on his back? The need for something permanent makes him need to know. Of all the things in his life Ichigo is the one thing he can not allow to vanish. "Ichigo, you have to say it..."

She looks away slanting her eyes to the floor filled with fear and a hint of shame. It's so obvious she does love him. Saying it out loud though... It might take a little more than the pleading of his large blue eyes for that.

The school bell rings announcing the start of classes. The hollow bell echoes freely in the stairwell between Ichigo's empty palms and Tensa's wide eyes. "Please... tell me you do."

It was the please that moved the girl, ignoring the promise to never say it aloud, to not whisper or pine in front of him. The years of keeping those words to herself just pile up on her making her knees shake. "I... I love you so much!" she finally blurts it out all in one unsteady breath.

"You do..." Tensa whispers in disbelief, "I've loved you since I first saw you hiding in that hydrangea." Looking over his shoulder he sees the door at the bottom of the stairwell left open. "In here." Clutching hands they dart into the old storage room.

Soon as the door locks behind them Ichigo finds herself pushed firmly against the door by Tensa's body.

Without responding he reaches out curling his fingertips around her chin, those amber eyes of hers widen glinting with surprise.

"Oh, he is going to..." His firm lips soften with the first contact moving tenderly against her mouth. Instantly her knees weaken and a strong arm wraps around her waist.

It's almost too good to be true. He is actually doing it. Arms wrapping around the one he'd holds in the highest regard, lips locked in love and waiting. God, her lips are so soft."Silken…" that is the only way to describe them.

He runs a hand up her back, a tender motion bringing her closer into his chest. He is so gentle with her; so patient. He isn't rushing her, or forceful that would only prove his parents tainted him. No instead, Tensa allows her to move the shifting of their kiss enjoying the touch at her own pace. Closing his eyes everything in him focuses on the one moment.

The emotions flow in as he begins to rub the small of her back. Tensa's kiss is deliberate, yet apprehensive; aggressive and forward, yet timid and patient... all things that rise up. "Somehow... I knew he would be this way and the wretched girl I am craved it. No, I crave him."

Soon, he breaks apart, opening his eyes slightly taking in the gasping sight of her dilated pupils, her breathing harder and much more noticeable. Her heart was pounding as she gazed into the beauty of his pale blue eyes; he is the snowstorm falling against the sunset. He needs her; her compassion, her beauty, her intelligence, her warmth. He needs her to melt the frozen state that his life had been subjected to.

It was then that he made his choice.

"Tensa -" her voice is cut off by another swift kiss on the lips. Moaning lightly into it, she feels her body heat up in response. It's intoxicating. Completely taken in, yet again, by this man's undeniable feelings. She falls, and the only way to prevent it is to wrap her arms around his neck.

Ichigo hadn't made to deepen the kiss. No, she wasn't going to ruin this. She wanted to feel him, and to feel what he wanted to let out. All of this time, he kept her at bay by telling her that he'd simply 'be okay' or 'don't worry'. He'd bore his pain like some duty. Silence isn't what she wants, though. She wants all of him. All of his feelings need to surface and somehow Ichigo is the only one who is capable of breathing life into him.

"Ahh!" she moans fingers tug and pull at her shirt, until bare skin is revealed to his curious explorations. Her arms lift and wrap around his strong neck unconsciously. Their kiss deepens and a demanding tongue strokes at her quivering lips for entrance. His knee nudges between her thighs backing her against an old teacher´s desk. Tensa's body heat burn through the material of her school uniform... through everything

The softness of tan skin under his fingers is so much more blinding than Tensa would have ever guessed. When he stops to catch some breath, his hands waste no time pushing her white shirt up and over the enticingly round mounds of Ichigo´s breasts. White lace with pink cherry blossoms blossom in front of his eyes fueling his desire to touch more of her. Smacking his palms on both sides of that beautiful head he leans down, smoothing his lips along the supple curve of Ichigo´s throat, breathing in the sweetly peach scent of her skin. "I want to memorize your scent..." he whispers breathing deep, holding the sweet fragrance inside his chest. "The feel of your skin..." Gently he tugs up her bra to release her breasts and dips his head forward to nuzzle his cheek between them. "I need to know only your taste." Flicking his tongue out he glides the wet tip over her hardening nipple. The wild beat drumming in his ears mixes with her breathless gasps is so intoxicating. He suddenly wraps his palms around her waist and his mouth to moves over her heaving breasts with open-mouthed needy kisses.

"Ah!" her back arches off the desk as pleasure courses down her spine, strong and undoing. When his mouth clamps firmly around her stiff nipple and sucks hard, while the other is rhythmically tweaked between his fingers she cries out again. "Aaaah!"

Tensa sighs in satisfaction, feeling her hips start to rock against his groin in a quickly escalating frenzy. Leaving her breast, his mouth momentarily covers hers, effectively locking any sounds inside.

Her eyes clamp shut in understanding. Gnawing slightly on her swollen bottom lip to keep quiet hands roam under her skirt and up her naked thigh. "Yes!" she can't help but move towards his finger pressing against her clit through her panties, again and again, until she writhes under him, overflowing with this unknown need for more. When she curses under her breath after another attempt to reach his pants, Tensa finally pulls her panties off, stuffing them in his pocket and his mouth instantly waters at the sight of her glistening pussy. "Can I have you?" he asks and she nobs enthusiastic. Making quick work of his belt and zipper, he simply lets his pants fall down, unwilling to wait any longer. His hips fit seamlessly between Ichigo´s long, tan thighs and his cock glides against her core with stunning ease. "Ohhh yessss." He groans when the sensitive tip slips into her welcoming entrance and she impulsively locks her ankles behind his back, allowing him to push deeper... until there is nothing left and he is buried in her tight pussy, surrounded within her. For a second they both still, searching each other´s faces with smiles of amazement, then she rocks her hips slightly and he pulls back in answer, only to push inside her with more force. Back and forth, again and again, Tensa grits his teeth as he watches her lip once more worried between white teeth when he angles his thrusts and touches deep inside her intoxicating body. Each time when he pulls out her legs fight to keep him inside her tightening heat. Some part of his brain realizes as he pulls Ichigo up and towards the edge of the desk, "I've only loved her, I will only love her." His thrusts speed up inside her quivering pussy when she moans uncontrollably into the kiss and he does not stop. Stopping is something he just can't do with this woman.

"Ahhh!" The first wave ripples through her. Her head tilts backs and her eyes focus on the tiny window and the patch of sunshine cutting a path through the window. Following the ray of light she finds herself looking at his face. Tensa is beautiful illuminated with passion locked in his eyes, and intense pleasure spreads a tender happiness inside her breast. Her head spins as she comes, clamping wildly around Tensa´s thick cock, sending him over the edge with her. Her hands move to cradle his head against her shoulder as he silently moans his release into her neck, his damp hair tickling at her skin.

Staying still for a long moment he waits patiently for their breathing to calm before breaking the silence. "How many weeks?" he whispers near her ear, arms circle his neck and hold him so close he can't breathe.

Clamping her eyes shut the tears fall down her cheeks at the inevitable parting that is waiting for them. Why couldn't she have been born a year earlier? Then she would be able to leave with him. "I can take a mid-term graduation in twenty-eight weeks."

"Not too long." he whispers in that small perfectly shaped ear again his hands shaking from holding something dear for the first time. "We can handle that."

"Yeah... we can Tensa."

And so the three weeks go by a little too quickly for Ichigo and Tensa leaves for college. Later that night Ichigo walks over to her window and throws open the shutters her eyes glancing over at the darkened window of her neighbor's house. Grabbing a blanket from her nearby desk she wraps it around her shoulders and sits on the windowsill holding a small card Tensa left on her pillow this morning. She woke and found him gone the pink envelope the only proof he had been there at all. Tensa only leaves behind feelings in his wake. He has always been like that. Fleeting. Never once did he make a fuss over anything. With a sigh she opens the envelope tilting her head in confusion as a plain white card slides out.

Opening it she finds a single line.

"Lock your window tonight. When I come back... I'm coming through the front door. I love you."

Her lips move up to form a smile. "You did leave something behind after all."

!Hello) My bunniez My 900th reviewer will have the honor of choosing a pairing. That can happen if only a fraction of you all review! See you in a few when I upload a special chapter to celebrate my FF Birthday! four years can you believe it?!

It was different for me to do this type of story I hope you liked it ;D Sometimes people keep secrets they never tell and the rescue comes in many forms. So I hope you can see how Ichigo saved Tensa long before the end of the story.

For the record no I'm not saying people who are abused should stay under that kind of pain. This is a work of fiction and should be considered as entertainment^^. I simply followed the characterizations I laid out for the pairing. People battle and fight in their own ways. =)

True freedom is found in the small spaces between the beating of hearts.