Chapter 3: Old & new faces

Date: (again, still) Monday September 4th

Ichigo POV

So we left the office and headed down the hallway. I have to admit I wasn't sorry to say goodbye to that Kukaku Shiba woman, there's something about her that's just almost, unsafe…well I guess I will soon find out, seeming though I'll probably have her as a science teacher sooner or later. We head down the left wing of the hall way as we were instructed, "Wow…" Tatsuki suddenly comments, I look at her my permanent frown deepening, "What?" She turned her head and continued, "You know that this room all the new first years are going to be waiting in? I was thinking and it really must be a huge room! I mean to fit the entire new freshman year! Man!" the three of us blinked comprehending this, Orihime said thoughtfully, "You know, that is a good point." Yeah…apparently this room we're heading to is gonna be pretty big…but then this is a big, old, building, it's going to be a dead given that a lot of the rooms are going to be big…but still. I don't know. This is a very weird conversation…one I really want to give up on. So let's not discuss it anymore. Okay.

"So Orihime..." I started, although I paused because Orihime sort of…squeaked? Or was it more of an…eep? …either way, she then looked at me almost sort of, flustered looking…man she's always been a bit, eccentric. But then I guess she wouldn't be Orihime if she wasn't. I glanced at Tatuski to see if she had noticed Orihime's odd behaviour, I received a 'you are such an idiot, why don't you get it' kind of look. Jeez, what's with that?...am I missing something here? So I returned Tatsuki a 'What?' expression to which I received a 'never mind…idiot'. Yeah. This whole scene of Tatsuki and me communicating through facial expressions just goes to show how well we know each other…

"Ah, ye-yes? Ichigo?" Orihime asked. I carried on, "I was just wondering, are you still hoping to be a primary school teacher?" I was asking this to pass the time, I mean we have to talk about something whilst walking these halls towards this supposedly 'huge room'…plus I am interested. She looked at me for a second before closing her eyes, smiling and replying enthusiastically, "Oh yes! I've taken all the courses that I need to help me become a primary school teacher!"

"Er, just out of interest, why a primary school teacher? I mean having to teach a load of screaming little kids algebra and stuff, would certainly wane on my patience…"

"Mine too." Tatsuki added with a twisted expression as she thought about the screaming kids. Orihime thought for a moment as we started walking up the staircase, which I have to say is just as impressive as the rest of the school. It's wide, wide enough to fit several people along the steps at a time no doubt …some of the floor boards on the staircase creaked angrily as we placed our weight onto them. CREAK. Yeah, like that one…I can see if I need to make any quick quiet get aways in the future I'm going to have to learn which steps to step on and which to avoid… smoothly varnished and frequently used banisters giving the impression of grandeur, as I gripped the banister as we made our what up the staircase I noticed the dark wood and the smooth touch it left on my hand, I can't help but study the used wood, wondering how many people over the years have done exactly as I was doing right then…

Oh right! Haha back to the conversation I guess…"Well," Orihime started, "it's just something I really want to do! I enjoy looking after children and I think it would feel like a real achievement, you know? To teach children, not only things like algebra but also daily occurrences, choices, you know? It's something I've wanted to do for a while now!" she ended with a happy smile and a little laugh. Well, fair enough, I guess those are pretty good reasons…although, I wouldn't be a primary school teacher myself, ha hell no, "Fair enough." I answered her speech. She looked pleased and replied, "You think so?" I blinked a little confused, "Well, yeah…" she smiled and nodded happily, I glanced at Tatsuki who had the 'you are such an idiot, why don't you get it' lookagain…well I'm sorry, jeez! Why do I feel out of the loop…oh well.

We all suddenly stopped, gazing at a strong wooden door. We had reached the top of the first flight of stairs and this was the first door to our left. I assume this is the room (that is supposedly huge) where we are supposed to wait to be shown around the college. We stand there for a second. I don't see either of the girls reaching for the handle so I figure, hell, someone has to open the damn door. We can't stand outside for the rest of the day…so I reached out and opened the door. I mean, what's the big deal? It's just a door.

An immense sound of people talking away enthusiastically inside the room, hit us like a full front on punch. I blinked a few times, my permanent frown growing deeper protectively as some eyes focused on us as we (more 'new comers') arrived, but I guess because people had been arriving for most of the morning their eyes didn't linger on us long, not to mention we were all 'new comers'. Even so…I still felt on guard. The room, as Tatsuki had predicted, was huge! It was long, rectangular and had a sort of traditional dance floor feel to it, with high wooden beams supporting the ceiling. On the opposite wall to which we were facing were three large windows letting welcoming sunshine enter the crowded room. The room had many white tables and chairs placed everywhere, I guess they had been put out neatly but as everyone arrived they had been moved around to suit the groups that were already forming. I searched the room as we made our way around, studying faces, attitudes, examining the beginnings of my new surroundings. These are the people I'm going to be spending college with after all. Might as well check them all out…I mean that in a non-perverted way, trust me. Orihime looked shyly and timidly around at everyone as she followed Tatuski and me as we looked for a place to sit. I wasn't surprised to see Tatsuki, as usual, not afraid to look people in the eye purposely showing that she new how to look after herself.

As we went round the room I noticed people sitting on the tables, some sitting on the chairs, others even sitting on the chair with their feet on the table. I saw one couple, the girl sitting on the boy's lap their hands entwined as they chatted away to the people around them…I got some weird looks, not surprising to be honest, all the looks were directed at my unusual hair colour as their eyes flickered upwards. I looked straight back at them; I have just as much right to be here as they do. They soon looked away. "HEY! ICHIGO! DUDE! OVER HERE!" I turned my head abruptly as another familiar voice called out through the crowds. My eyes focused on a guy, with light red-ish brown hair that grew downwards but curved slightly at the ends, brown eyes, not quite as tall as me and not as well built…I'm not bragging, just stating a fact. He waved madly as he stood on…one of the tables! We made our way over to him as quickly as we could, weaving past the tables, chairs and people…I walked past someone who was walking in the direction we had just came and I accidentally bumped his shoulder, "Sorry…" I started, "Watch where you're going!" he growled in response before he continued to stride away, "What's his problem..?" I mumbled disgruntled, Orihime blinked, closed her eyes and smiled, "Just ignore him Ichigo!" I glanced in the direction the ass hole had went…he was a big guy, muscled, tall, he strutted around like he owned the place!...but the thing that I couldn't help but notice was his hair…it was blue!...I mean I'm no one to judge but, seriously! Blue! It was BLUE!...that can't be real surely…before I looked away to head over to the table with the wildly waving buffoon, I noticed him sweet talking to a group of girls, who giggled…

We arrived at the table where the buffoon shouted, "ICHIGO!" to which I replied, "Keigo! Get down from there you idiot! You're causing a scene…" Keigo pouted and crouched still on the table, "Ah Ichigo! You think coz we're at college now I'm gonna stop being a goof…" he leapt up and shouted, "I'M SORRY MY FRIEND BUT YOU ARE SURELY MISTAKEN! I KEIGO ASANO WILL NOT STOP JUST TO PLEASE A GROUP OF STUCK UP SOPHISTICATED COLLE~"

"KNOCK IT OFF!" Tatsuki put an end to Keigo's loud rant, knocking him off the table, Keigo (Anime tears) pitifully said from the floor, "Hello Tatsuki…" a chirpy voice then spoke up, "Thanks Tatsuki, someone had to shut him up!" Mizuiro sat at the table as well (another friend of mine) I then noticed a big guy sitting at the table that I recognised as Chad (another friend) Oh, I suppose I should explain, Keigo and Mizuiro have been my friends for years, we were in the same class during high school. They're about the goofiest pair you'll ever meet but I still seem to be friends with them so they must have their good points. Mizuiro is about the same height at Keigo, small build, has black hair that sorta curls out at the sides with two (or one, depends) small bits of hair loosely sitting on his forehead, big brown eyes, oh and he thinks he's a total ladies man…one who prefers older women. I've known Chad for about the same amount of time that I've known Keigo and Mizuiro, Chad was also in the same class as me in high school. There's one very good way of describing Chad…one that always comes to mind…he is big. And I mean BIG. The guys a freakin giant! Seriously, he's very tall, HUGE muscles I'm telling you that guy could break a person with one hand! Luckily he's a very down to earth quiet guy who doesn't like hurting people. He has brown wavy hair that often covers his right eye, his eyes are brown. He's like the strong silent type, you know just talks when he needs to…unlike Keigo who won't shut up…

So Orihime, Tatsuki and I sat down at this table with Chad, Keigo and Mizuiro. It was kinda surreal in a way, the six of us sitting at a table ready for college and we were all old high school friends. It was, nice I guess. Certainly didn't feel like I stuck out so much…although, that could have had something to do with Keigo acting like, well Keigo, causing any attentions in our group been mainly on him. I suppose if I think about it from other people's point of view we must have looked like a weird looking bunch. I mean, there was Keigo shouting and jumping around like an idiot, Tatsuki trying to get Mizuiro to have an arm wrestle, Mizuiro there squirming around like he needed a piss coz he was trying to stop Tatsuki from forcibly grabbing his arm, Orihime sitting there laughing away to herself with her eyes closed as if she found something cute and funny at the same time but it was only her who had noticed it, Chad who was sitting there just well sitting there and then there was me, the guy whose bleached (which it is not I liked to add, my hair is definitely natural) his hair so it's gone orange and with the weird permanent frown on his face. Yep. We must really look like a weird bunch. Pfft. What do I care what people think though. If I did I would have dyed my hair black years ago.

I was actually enjoying sitting there with all my friends, I mean I have seen them since we finished high school (which was a few weeks ago) but being actually together in an educational environment, or in this kind of atmosphere, it was…nice I guess. Atmosphere, that's something I'd like to point out. The excitement and the anxiety floating around the room from all the new students was incredible! Anxiety, excitement, apprehension…they were all there. It made this really strong feeling, almost like an adrenalin rush. Almost. Not quite.

We were there talking for a while and during that time the door opened and closed as more freshman arrived. Finally the wait for the second year student volunteers to arrive to show us around the college campus was over. The door opened and at first no one paid any attention, but we all turned as we heard a 'donk, donk' and then silence fell over the room. An old man with a cane (that's what had made the donk, donk, to get our attention) he looked ancient…that sounds really impolite but I'm afraid it's the truth! He looked pretty old! His half closed eyes searched the room, he had a bald head with a scar like a cross covering the left side of his head and forehead (his right, my left) he had impressively long white eyebrows, moustache and beard to match, his beard seemed to have black string rapped around in crossing formations. He wasn't alone either. Another man, tall, long white hair loosely hanging on his shoulders and back…well, that's unusual, a guy with long white hair. Huh. Also, standing next to these two men were a group of people not much older than myself…I guess those are the second year students. Brilliant.

The old guy spoke once we all fell silent. "Hello. My name is Yamamoto Genryuusai and I'm the head master of this college. This," he indicated the man with long white hair on his right, "Ukitake Juushio he is the deputy head master at this college." Then began some introductions, this head master started explaining some shit and then he told us some more crap and so on. I don't have to explain it all it was enough to hear it once. He finally said, "Now, I shall let Mr Ukitake explain the next course of action for all of you." The deputy head stepped forward and stated, "Right, what we need you to do is get into small groups. It doesn't matter what groups, whether you know the people or not. Just as long as you're in a small group. Then one of the second year students who have volunteered to show you around the college campus, will pick your group and then you will be shown around. Any questions you have feel free to ask your student guide. If you have any further questions or anything else you would like to discuss, either with your courses or anything in particular you are welcome to visit my office or the head master's." so that was that. The noise of people talking started up again louder than ever. The head master and deputy head said something to the volunteer students then they turned and left. "Well, I guess we're a group." Mizuiro pointed out, "Alright! Let's do this! Finally we're gonna get shown around campus! I mean c'mon how long have we been waiting? Oh! Hey Ichigo! Have you seen all the hot bodacious babes that are getting around this room! I mean the sexy atmosphere they're steaming off is almost unbearable dude! I wonder if our little innocent Ichigo is gonna finally become a man now that our college life has nearly and truly started!" (Ichigo twitch anger sign) Keigo over hyperactively exclaimed "You're one to talk Keigo…" I mumbled, he continued either choosing to ignore me or not hearing me, "Oh MAN! Look at some of those hot second year girls! I seriously hope we get one of them! Dude, Chad don't look so scary! Stand less tall or something! We gotta get one of those second year girls to show us around!" Tatsuki twitched, "Why does he never shut up...?"

Everyone in the room got into small groups and waited for a second year student to come and show them around. I looked curiously around when I spotted someone I knew…a guy not far, by himself, with black hair and glasses…I shouted and waved, "Hey Uryu!" He looked over his glasses at me. Uryu is another guy from my high school class. I can't exactly say we were ever friends. But again, I can't really say we were enemies either. There were times when we were and we really hated each other but then…I guess I consider him my friend. Sort of…certainly one of the more annoying ones…not to mention seriously stuck up. I shouted to him again, still not much of a response, just looked at me over his glasses. Dick. Orihime realised who I was yelling at, smiled happily, raised her arm and started waving too, "Oh! Uryu! Hey! Come over here Uryu!" he blinked and then started to make his way over. Oh so now he comes! Jeez! What a dick! He walked up to us, "You always have to draw attention to yourself don't you Ichigo…" he said smoothly, dick. "Hey! I was just calling you over coz you were by yourself and I thought you might want to be in our group!" I angrily retorted, "I was doing fine by myself…" he answered. Dick, "Well, you might as well be in our group now that you're here!" I growled, Orihime smiled and said to Uryu, "It's nice to see you Uryu! You should stay in our group! It will be fun if we're all together!" Uryu blinked at Orihime then replied, "It's nice to see you too Orihime. I guess as I'm here now I might as well join your group." I twitched, "That's what I said!" I yelled frustrated.

Keigo (anime tears) quietly howled, "Our group just suddenly got less cool…but we mustn't get deterred!" He stood up straighter stopped howling (sparkles) "We must succeed in getting a hot sexy babe to be our guide!" just as he said that, a second year student girl came walking towards us, (What are the odds huh?) "Ah! See what did I tell ya! Watch and learn fellas, as the Keigo man works!" he exclaimed triumphantly. The volunteer student approaching us had long wavy light coppery hair, really pretty blue eyes, a small mole (I think it's called a, beauty spot?) under her lips on the right side of her face (her right, my left) and…oh for god sake not another one! What is with women today and bombarding me with HUGE freakin boobs! Those things could compete against Kukaku Shiba's! Jesus Christ...I have to admit though, this second year girl, man she's attractive! She was right next to us, Keigo jumped forward and started to say, "Well hey there pretty lady!" but she suddenly squealed and rushed passed Keigo! I don't think she even saw him, he fell onto the floor (second time today ha) coz as she ran past she sort of bumped him and yeah, Keigo + bumped = on the floor like a wimp. She ran up to another group not far from us and started hugging someone…whoever it was must have been pretty small coz I couldn't see who it was! Not that I would know them…but still, she was hugging whoever it was real tight…I guess she knows whoever it is…unless she just hugs any random person…

"Why hello there…" a sleek voice entered my trail of thought. I turned and saw a second year student standing in front of us. Now. This guy. This guy looks…well…I guess I'll describe him and you can decide for yourself…he was tall, I guess about my height, quite well built, he had short smooth violet white greyish hair (I guess violet is the right word…it's hard to explain) his eyes were closed and a creepy smile was formed on his lips…a long mouth that curls up at the edges (he reminds me of 'The Joker' from the Batman film…any moment I feel like he's gonna say "Why so serious..?") he spoke again as we stood there blinking at him, "My name is Gin Ichimaru…and I am your student guide for today." Okay. So…we don't get a choice in this? He turned saying, "Follow me freshmen!" apparently not. Perfect. Just freakin great. Keigo was now off the floor, looking pretty upset about not getting a 'hot babe' to show us around. We started to follow this Gin guy as he arrogantly led the way out of the room we were waiting in…Great. Just as I predicted. A stuck up second year college student showing us around and laying down the law...and also as I predicted…I don't think I'm going to like the guy…