"I am your potential partner," said Kurosaki Ichigo. He sat straight back, his orange spiky hair looked neat (not messy as his usual morning), and his amber eyes stared into his senior partner, Juushiro Ukitake.
This was the time, Kurosaki had planned it all. This was the time to gamble all that he had.
Kurosaki started mentioning the list he had arranged in his head. "I've been working for this firm for almost six years, I contribute more than other lawyers. I have a list of permanent clients who are…"
Ichigo scowled hearing his first name mentioned. Juushiro was one of a few people he allowed to use his given name. Ichigo, despite the actual meaning (the one who protect) sometimes gave false impression and sounded more… feminine, and he was far than feminine (of course). He spent almost all his time in years to perfected his reputation in court, and the name "Kurosaki" was more suitable than his first name.
"… we all realize that you are an important asset of this firm. You are a promising future partner and we do realize all that."
"Promising?" asked Kurosaki.
He didn't like being promising. Kurosaki tried his best to hide his disappointment.
"Indeed you have all those achievement you've mentioned before, even more. Nevertheless, Ichigo, your life is not balanced. You worked and…? What else do you have in life?" asked Juushiro.
As a senior partner in Seiretei Law Firm, Juushiro Ukitake felt that he should play the role as a father in this firm. Or maybe it's not because he's a senior partner, but because he had reached an age to be a father for almost all the lawyers and staff in this law firm.
"My job is my life," said Kurosaki.
His job was his desire, and like every other lovers, "she" will be jealous if Kurosaki spent his time for another thing. Kurosaki obeyed "her" willingly. He realized his relationship with his job was more fulfilling than any other relationships with other women. He understood law, but didn't have a single clue about woman species. And he had given up understanding them, at least for this moment. There will be time when he'll be ready to settle down, but not now.
"Working is not enough," cut Juushiro. "I've been in this firm for almost all my life – more than four decade – and it's not enough. Maybe I shouldn't say this, but you need someone who will wait for you at home. You need a balance life outside your firm and your court room. You need a wife. When we see you have learned that there are a lot of things beside your job, we will discuss about your promotion to be a partner."
"A wife?" Kurosaki repeated. He didn't even date with the same woman for more than a few months. How could Juushiro possibly think that he was interested in having a serious relationship with one of them?
"A wife." repeated Juushiro slowly. "I know you might think that this idea was so old fashion. But Retsu and I will celebrate our 50th anniversary next week. I married her once I graduated from high school and she has completed my life ever since. She is the reason I always come home every night. She –"
Kurosaki butted in. "How about a fiancé?'
Kurosaki heard himself said that word, but he couldn't believe he said it. A fiancé? He didn't have a fiancé. He didn't want a fiancé at all, as much as he didn't want a wife.
"Fiance?" Juushiro repeated, as if he could hear Kurosaki's thought.
Thinking as fast as he could, Kurosaki said, "I know she is not my wife, at least not yet, but you're right, she makes my life complete. I could barely remember my life without her before."
Juushiro's eyes narrowed when he watched Kurosaki. "When did that begin?"
Feeling like a teenager who's lying about a broken car, Kurosaki said, "Just recently." It's not a total lie. He just got a fiancé about two seconds before.
"Well," Juushiro said slowly. A genuine smile plastered on his face. "You really do can keep secrets very well, Son. That what makes you a great lawyer."
Juushiro stopped for a second before continuing, "Fiance? This changes everything. I'll talk to other partners, meanwhile you should take your fiancé to the party next week so that we can get to know her. Finally, a woman who could melt a legendary ice man. You always keep everything for yourself, Ichigo. I appreciate that, but our firm is family. And if that woman will marry you, she will be a part of this family too. So, take her and introduce her to us."
"I'll do it," Kurosaki heard himself promised.
"Like I said, I'll talk with the other partners, and I'll let you know the decision as soon as possible." Juushiro stood up.
Kurosaki followed him stood up and extended his hand. "Thank you, Juushiro-san."
Kurosaki exited the office while feeling depressed. He couldn't decide whether he made things better or worse. Whatever it was, he had to do something fast.
Ichigo Kurosaki needed to find a fiancé… immediately.