Rating: M, language, violence, sex.
Description: GrimmIchi. AU. Shinigami and hollows are straight up angels and demons. Grimmjow has watched Ichigo for years, now he finds out that he's become his natural enemy, an angel.
Disclaimer: Bleach is created and owned by Tite Kubo, I merely pay homage to characters and a story I love.
Warning(?) Slightly lovey dovey Grimmjow, at least in relation to Ichigo.
Also, I will be switching back and forth with first person perspective (going between Grimmjow and Ichigo).
EDITING NOTES: I am going through and editing each chapter in preparation for the end couples of chapters. Each section will now be labeled so you'll know who's talking/thinking and I'm editing grammar and fixing spelling mistakes. There are a couple of rewrites planned as well, but nothing that changes the plot or characters. At the end of each chapter I will make a note of when it was edited, in case you have any questions about what chapters have been fixed up and made shiny.
Chapter 1: Savior
How could I have never seen it? He had so much potential, but it never clued me in on who he actually was. Now there was no time for talk, I had to save him.
The grotesque demon barely fit inside of his house, its large fangs dripping with venom and its many tails whipping around the room, destroying parts of the walls. He was prone, lying on the ground, and my heart froze seeing him unmoving like that. I could still feel his life force throbbing around me so I knew he was ok, but I could feel the confusion and pain.
I ran to him, scooping him up in my arms while still keeping an eye on the demon in the corner, who hissed its anger at me. "Ichigo," I called to him. He opened his eyes and looked into mine. Those eyes, brown with flecks of gold…eyes that had never met mine. It was such a simple thing to look into his eyes, but it was life changing for me. I already knew that I cared for him deeply, that there was something odd about how I felt and acted towards him. Hell, I'd been stalking him for years. There's no reason for a demon of my caliber to go around stalking some human. I knew after looking down at him though that I was completely lost. I only wish I had known it sooner. I blame my stubbornness for ignoring the issue. Now I was going to lose him without even ever having had a conversation with him.
"What?" he asked in confusion. "Who are you?"
"You can see me," I breathed with relief.
At least there was that comfort. Then I felt like smacking myself. Of course he could see me; he was going to be an angel now.
I was too distracted by Ichigo. I wasn't even paying attention to the weakling of a demon that had caused all of this. He was too smart to strike out at me, instead going for Ichigo. I moved slightly, taking the hit and deflecting it with my mask. It was chancy, but I'm like that, and I didn't want Ichigo out of my arms until I absolutely had to let him go. That damn demon had ruined everything for me and I wasn't going to let him make me waste any of these last moments I had with the kid.
I didn't even bother getting up. I just used a cero to demolish that disgusting excuse for a demon. It was his damn fault for not reading the marking trails that I'd left all over the house declaring it off limits.
"What just happened?" Ichigo asked, still lying in my arms.
"My name is Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez. Can you remember that?" It seemed really important to me that he remember my name.
"Yeah, Grimmjow…Jaegerjaquez…" He repeated. "It's an unusual name, but I think it's really interesting."
I grinned at him.
"We don't have a bunch of time, they're going to sense you and are going to come for you," I said.
"What?" he looked worried.
"Don't worry. They're not people that will harm you. They're coming to recruit you and to train you," it pained me to say it even if it was true. Ichigo tried to say something but I cut him off, I had a lot that I needed to say in a short amount of time. "I've been watching over you for years, trying to keep you out of trouble. I won't be able to anymore, but you'll get strong and be able to take care of yourself now. When you find out about everything, I hope that you'll remember this part, and not the shit that they feed you. Because…I love you, Ichigo Kurosaki," I said.
"You what?" He asked.
I know it had to be weird for him to have a complete stranger, and in such odd circumstances, confess his feelings. I wasn't expecting anything back.
"I can't see you anymore though, because from now on we'll be an opposite sides of the fence. If they know about me they'll try to kill me. Or worse…you'll try to kill me," the idea was so painful to me that I wondered if I could defend myself against him. I had a brief image of us fighting together, zanpakutos shooting sparks as we flew fast and furious. I have to admit that I found the idea of fighting him thrilling, possibly even a little erotic, but the idea of him hating me and trying to kill me was sobering. "I can feel them coming now, kid," I said. "I have to go."
I still couldn't manage to let him go though. I had to do one more thing. I leaned over and kissed him. He was shocked, and I wasn't expecting him to respond; I just wanted to know how he tasted, feel how warm he was. Humans are always so warm.
"Damn it," I murmured, finally releasing him. "Be safe, ok?" I said as I backed away.
"Grimmjow," Ichigo said, just before passing out.
It was just like he said it would be. They came for me. I'd always thought that angels were something other than human, but I guess they are born human and then change. Some angels are higher forms, they're born angels. It's the same with the demons. There are regular ghosts, just confused and muddled. They just need a push in the right direction, or sometimes you have to help them complete something that they left undone in their life; get a message to someone, reconcile with relatives, make sure that their children or companies or even pets were ok. That last one surprised me, but don't underestimate how attached people are to their pets. One guy couldn't pass on until I had found all four of his dogs a nice home. They had to be together too, he refused to have them split up.
Angels that are still human like me do a lot of that sort of crap work, although it can be rewarding too. Other human can't see full born angels, so things like talking to the living can be a handicap. Once I die (or at least once my body dies) I'll still be an angel, just without a body. It's still a lower rank than the fullborns, but at least they get more respect than people that are still alive like I am. Right now I'm pretty much bottom rung. It doesn't matter that I'm talented. For a bunch of supposedly holy beings they sure have a lot of backward thinking. If they could ever get the collective stick out of their asses, I think I'd have a lot easier of a time working for them.
That's how I look at it too, as working for them, just like any other job. It's a job where I get to help people, which was good considering most of my family is in the life saving business anyways, running a small free clinic. So it seemed like I was fulfilling my destiny, just in a different way than I had planned.
There are also angry ghosts; I usually take care of those as well. I was worried that I was hurting them at first, but my zanpakuto just releases and cleanses them. That's what they say, and I believe them, but it's still a little disconcerting to hear something that looks humanlike scream as you stab them and then disintegrate.
Then there are the actual demons. Demons are like angels, some are created from the souls of angry ghosts, and some are born demons. I'm not sure how someone can be born a demon, since that's like saying that a baby is evil, but Rukia explained that it is a cycle of redemption that takes a while. If a very bad demon dies and still isn't cleansed enough to move on to heaven, it will begin life again as a demon, this time slightly farther from condemnation.
I have some problems with that theory. They call it a fact, but it can't be true. According to them, the espada would be the most evil things in the multiple realms. I remember hearing about them, listening to the frightening tales of wars and epic battles and mass slaughters. When I asked for a description of what an espada looked like, they told me that they look almost human. Almost human? No other demon looks humanlike. Some are humanoid, but you'd have to be near blind to mistake one for the other.
So that meant…that meant that Grimmjow was an espada, and there was no way that I could ever believe him to be truly evil.
"Can a demon ever love someone?" I asked Rukia once during my training.
"Lower demons that have evolved from human ghosts can have a drive to be around someone, but not love them. Usually they attack or harm them," she told me.
I didn't think that was true. Grimmjow had told me that he loved me and there was no reason for him to lie. There had been no reason for him to save me or to look after me in the years before I became an angel. I could tell, just by the way he looked at me, by the pain in his voice when he said that he couldn't see me again, there was no way that he didn't love me. I don't think that true evil and true love can exist together. This has led to some philosophical disagreements between me and my angel friends. I'm supposedly one of them, but I don't buy into the way that they see the world.
Didn't Grimmjow tell me to not buy into everything that they'd feed me?
It's funny how one meeting can change your life. My life changed a lot that day. I have to wonder what would have happened if he hadn't come, if I had just become an angel without ever meeting him. Would I have believed everything they told me? Why not? There was no reason for me to not trust them. However, I know enough now to think that if one side ever claims to have the complete truth, you should know for sure that side is bullshit. No one knows the whole truth and can see it in the light with no shadow. When I was a kid I used to think that God and angels were perfect beings, and while I can't comment on God, I know that the angels I'm with are a lot closer to us fallible human beings than most humans would be comfortable knowing. They have personalities, likes and dislikes, loves and hatreds, they fight and they get bored and they get married and have children. They have assigned jobs and live in a hierarchal society with strict laws that can't be bent, whether for compassion or mercy or to simply give someone another chance. Maybe there's a reason for this rigidness, but I don't see one.
So here's my confession, something really stupid and lame that I do. I have a necklace that I always hold onto when I'm nervous. When I'm about to go into a big battle, or when I'm about to get into a fight with my dad, or even when I'm about to take a test, I wrap my right hand around it tightly. I made it after the attack, after I met Grimmjow. There was a small piece of something white on the ground that I had found the next morning. It looked like bleached bone. I had saved it, and later I learned that all medium and higher level demons have masks. That was when I remembered Grimmjow blocking a hit and taking it on his face.
I don't know if I was just feeling superstitious or what, but I took that piece of bone and wrapped a cord around it and hung it on my neck. It's there all the time, even when I shower or sleep. I like to think of it as a remembrance of someone who saved my life, but even I know that it's more than that to me.
"Grimmjow," I said as I held it.
I wonder what his presence felt like. Now that I could feel things like that I was curious. It would have to be beyond anything I'd felt from anyone else.
I had wondered what would have happened if Grimmjow had stayed and met up with the recruiting force that eventually found me. When I asked how powerful an espada was compared to an angel I was surprised to find out that many angels believe that espada are more powerful than even fullborn angels and that even the highest class of angel wouldn't necessarily make it out alive against an espada.
I grabbed my necklace tightly again and tried to get back to studying. It was hard to concentrate on schoolwork when I was up most of the night, and I spent a lot of my time between classes and team meetings trying to catch up.
"Mmm," I sighed.
"Damn it, Grimmjow, don't do that!" Nnoitra grumbled. "It's fucking creepy."
"Ha, like I give a fuck what creeps you out or not." I laughed.
"Look, just go down there and take your damn mask piece back from the brat so I don't have to sit here watching you get all…soft hearted or whatever the hell happens to you when he does that."
"Look you bastard," I said in a deadly tone of voice. "This is my fucking domain. If you want to fight me for it, fight me for it. Otherwise stay on your part of the world and stay the fuck out of mine."
"You're sure being crabby," Szayelaporro said as he walked in.
"What the hell? Is this an open house or something? Did I put out an invite for all espada to come and annoy the hell out of me without knowing it?"
"Aizen wants us to all meet, and he's picked your domain for the meeting," Szayelaporro announced.
"Damn it," I rubbed at my eyes.
I hate Aizen, hate the fact that a fucking fallen angel gives us all orders and we just all hopped to like he was our damn god or something. To have to host Aizen (and all the other damn espada) in my domain is insulting. Of course, Aizen probably did it on purpose just to piss me off, he's good at reading people and it's not like I've ever tried to hide my dissent in any way.
I was suddenly broken out of my bad mood. In fact, if the truth were to be known, I almost…almost…blushed.
"Alright team, let's kick some ass!" I said to my rugby team.
"Don't forget, Ichigo!" someone yelled at me. I smiled and lifted out my necklace and gave it a kiss for good luck. It was a traditional move on my part and my teamed cheered as I did it. They all think it brings them good luck; we haven't lost a single match this season and have had no serious injuries.
I swear when he does that I can almost taste his lips again, I thought to myself with a slight shudder.
"Happy thought?" Szayel said with an arched eyebrow.
"You don't even want to know. This fucker's sick," Nnoitra said.
He'd practically fallen to the ground laughing when I finally fessed up to him. "An angel? Seriously? An angel," he had said, gasping for air because he found the whole thing just so damn funny. Not that it was any of his business. Still, I know he's right to laugh.
A/N: Edited 1/25/2014