My dad's arms were strong yet gentle, like my mother was holding me at the same time he was. I didn't care that I was eighteen and my younger sisters and dad, the ones I was supposed to be strong in front of, were watching me bawl my eyes out like a baby. Nothing could phase me now knowing the crushing fact that Dad, Karin and Yuzu, who are much too smart for their age, knew of my defilement. Being raped by that blue-headed bastard was way worse than being caught collapsed on my floor in tears by my whole family.
"Goddammit!" I sobbed. I hated this! I hated being so angered and so helpless at the same time. I'm the one who's supposed to be the emotional support for this family, I can't be the one breaking down in tears! My mouth was open as I cried as quietly and little as possible, but it wouldn't have mattered if it was closed; I'd still be drooling all over my hand and gasping for air. Everything inside my body, both physically and emotionally, was retaliating. Nothing of mine wanted to be connected to me anymore, and I didn't blame them. My hips squeaked little cries of protest being placed in a sitting position after three days of laying down. My head screamed at me to erase the images of that man's smile, his eyes, his body over mine...
"Hey, Ichigo, it's okay," My dad's voice cracked with the emotion I knew he was holding back. He was trying to take the role I should be acting right now. The calm, cool, collected male figure. "Your legs were just a little weak from underuse. That's what happens when you lay in bed for a couple days." Dad knelt down and began rubbing my calves as if I had fallen because of a pulled muscle. I saw him glance out the window and heard him give a sigh of relief. I closed my eyes sending more tears over the edge of my lids to fall down my cheeks. Grimmjow was finally gone.
For some reason, I didn't know whether it was joy or fear, I started to cry harder. It's not like I wanted the rapist to stick around, but now I didn't know his whereabouts or when he would attack me next. I was more than certain there'd be a next time too.
Karin scrambled onto the bed beside me, her hand slipped in mine. My hand wasn't much bigger than hers anymore. I could remember when Mom first died and I held her and Yuzu's hands as we walked away from our mother's grave, my whole fist easily wrapped around her tiny hand. Her head came to rest on my lap as she cried silently, muttering my name over and over again. I wished with all my heart she had still been too young to understand what happened to me.
I quickly stopped my sobs by holding my breath and stopped my tears by wiping my sleeve of my free hand across my face. I could feel Dad's hands trembling against my leg at the show of his daughter's affection.
"Y- " I cleared my throat so the words would come out. "You guys, Dad, Karin, " I paused as Yuzu slipped into my room with her head down, hugging her chest. "Yuzu too. I'm alright. I'll be fine. Please stop worrying. C'mon Karin quit crying. Dad, you too. What would mom say if she saw you all crying over me for nothing?"
"She'd tell you to quit acting like nothing happened, Ichigo. She'd tell you she still loves you and won't ever stop and that she never wants to see you hurting." My Dad's words stung my body like when you jump into a hot tub in the middle of winter; too sudden, unsure of how to deal with the change. I looked away from my father, trying to keep my new tears from falling, but one dripped off my chin onto Karin's hand. She tightened her grip and kissed my leg. My heart swelled up to my mouth, rendering me speechless. All I could do was move my hand from my little sister's and place it on her head and pat her lovingly.
"You're right Dad," I finally managed to spit out. "Mom would say that, but I don't plan on actin glike waht happened to me didn't, I plan on dueling out proper consequences to-" I almost said bastard in front of my younger siblings. The next noun that popped into my head was man, but I wanted to believe my twin sisters didn't know what my body had gone through. "-to who is responsible." I figured that was the best replacement. "I want you to listen to yourself though. Mom would tell me she doesn't want to see me hurting, well I don't want to see you hurting either. So this will be my burden; not yours, not Karin's, not Yuzu's, not my friends, not. anyones. Got it?" I waited for Dad to nod before I continued. I smiled and looked down at Karin and then over at Yuzu who had her head raised expectingly. "I'll go to school tomorrow. My life will resume. And we'll all do something special after dinner tomorrow alright Karin?" Karin nodded excitedly. "Yuzu?" She nodded as well and I could finally give my own sigh of relief.
Yuzu's next words practically broke my heart with their weight. "Ichigo, no matter what happens to you, you will always be the strongest, most caring and most special man in my life that I know."
"Hey, Yuzu! What about Daddy?" My dad's fake hurt got me to laugh, really laugh. Immediately the three of them giggled along, their faces brighter and cheerier.