Disclaimer: I do not own Bleach or any of it's characters. This was completely fan made. I only own the car.
Thanks to Koko-chan for helping me out with this! She wrote a few parts while I was in writers block and was the one who discovered the spelling error that started this whole story. A big thanks and a cookie with mayo (don't ask...) goes to her!
Buy a Matumoto!
"Captain, I'm bored!" Rangiku lamented to her captain. "Let's do something fun! I know, how about a game of hide-and-seek?" she said, clapping her hands together. "You'd be good at that, Captain!"
"Not right now, Matsumoto," Tôshirô replied as he flipped through the Karakura Town newspaper. There was nothing interesting in it, as usual. The World of the Living was just a boring place compared to the Soul Society. The paper had weekly weather forecasts, obituaries, sports, and many advertisements. Tôshirô didn't understand the point of the weather forecasts. Why would people want to read a piece of paper that got ink all over their hands just to tell them what the weather would be tomorrow? The last few times he read the forecast and looked outside, the newspaper was wrong. It was more reliable to just look out a window. The only part that he considered remotely interesting was the sports section. At least sports had some action. "Can't you see I'm busy?"
"Aww! But Captain, you don't look that busy right now, and you can read the newspaper anytime!" Rangiku persisted. She got up from the couch that she had been laying on and walked over to the table where Tôshirô was sitting. She peered over his shoulder to see what he was reading. It was nothing that interested her, so she snatched the paper from the boy's hands. "Young boys should be doing something more active than sitting around and reading. You should be outside playing! Who knows, it might help you grow taller!"
"Are you suggesting that I'm a little kid?" Tôshirô asked while trying to keep his anger under control. "And who gave you permission to give me orders?"
"No one gave me permission, and that wasn't an order. I thought I was giving you some helpful advice!" she replied innocently. She rolled the newspaper into a cylinder and gently hit Tôshirô's head with it. "I'm disappointed that you have such little faith in me! I have no reason to call you a little kid."
"Didn't you tell me a little while ago that sleep might make me grow taller?" the short captain inquired, ignoring Rangiku's previous comments. "I sleep well enough; but you, on the other hand, sleep too much!"
"Really? I don't remember ever telling you that," Rangiku answered, putting her index finger to her lower lip. "And Captain, I didn't know that you were getting self-conscious about your height, either…"
"Don't you have something better to do?" Tôshirô sighed as he finally snatched the newspaper out of his lieutenant's grasp. "Why don't you go do something with Orihime or Rukia?"
"Aww! Captain, you're no fun!" the lieutenant pouted, half-whining. "But if you change your mind, just tell me!"
"I'm not going to."
"Fine!" Rangiku huffed. "Be a stick-in-the-mud! I'm going out!" With that, Rangiku left her captain in Orihime's apartment. I'll show him! she thought. I'll do something so exciting that he'll be begging me to join in!
Outside the stuffy little apartment, the day was warm and sunny. There was a light cool breeze that played through the tree tops and Matsumoto's long ginger-orange hair. Birds were twittering above her in the clear blue skies. Small, white, puffy clouds floated along without a care in the world.
The World of the Living fascinated Rangiku. It was so much more exciting, vibrant, and colorful than the Soul Society. If only her captain could see this world the way she did. He thought it was an annoying place where everyone thought he was an elementary student that could possibly be a burglar because he once used a second story window to get into someone's house. Rangiku valiantly tried to suppress her laughter at the thought, but failed horribly as she continued to wonder aimlessly along the streets.
It was lunch time in the Kurosaki home and Yuzu was making sushi in the kitchen. She sighed as she chopped pieces of raw fish with a knife. She could hear a lot of noise coming from the living room as her father, her older brother, Ichigo, and Ichigo's friend from school, Rukia played a game of Twister. She could also hear her sister, Karin, sighing exasperatedly at their father's childish antics.
"Karin, spin the pointer again!" Mr. Kurosaki said enthusiastically from his place on the game mat.
"I don't want to…" Karin replied as she lounged idly in a chair by a window. "This is stupid. I never thought I'd see the day you'd be playing children's games…"
"Awww! That hurt Daddy's feelings!" he replied. He then switched his attention to his son. "Now Ichigo, stretch just a little farther, so you can get to that blue dot!"
"I'm trying…" Ichigo grunted. "Wait! Why am I doing this?"
"C'mon Ichigo!" Rukia called from where she sat on the floor. "You beat me in the last round, so now you have to face your father!"
"Great… Just great…" Ichigo replied sarcastically. "I finally have a weekend free of homework and school projects and this is what I'm stuck doing…"
"Ding! Dong!" the door bell suddenly chimed its short tune to announce there was someone at the door. "Ding! Dong! Ding! Dong! Dingdongdingdongdingdoong!" it continued to ring, the notes smashing together, showing that whoever was outside was extremely impatient.
"I'll get it!" Ichigo's dad said quickly. He got out of his unnatural position and hit Ichigo on the back to help him stretch farther. Ichigo, on the other hand, could have done without the "help", because the force of the blow sent him sprawling to the ground. Ichigo's dad walked quickly to the front door, and then called back to Ichigo. "Hey Ichigo, there's a hot chick here, and she's asking for you! She says she goes to your school and is in your homeroom!"
Ichigo immediately scrambled up off the floor and ran to his father. Rukia stayed where she was and waited for Ichigo to report back to her about the unexpected visitor.
"See?" Mr. Kurosaki said as he stepped out of the doorway, so his son could get a good view of the visitor. "A hot chick!"
"IT'S YOU!" the teen shrieked, pointing to the newcomer. "WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?"
"It's not nice to point," Rangiku scolded like a mother. "Pointing at people is bad manners, and screaming at a lady is rude!"
"Either way, WHY ARE YOU HERE?" Ichigo roared, continuing to point, his finger shaking from random emotions pent up inside.
"'Cause I'm bored," Rangiku pouted, folding her arms. "I have nothing to do, and Captain won't play with me! He says he's too busy reading the newspaper!"
"Don't worry! You can play Twister with us!" Ichigo's dad said holding out his arms like a father would to a young child learning to walk.
"WHAT?" Ichigo whined. "Wait, she can ta—"
Suddenly, a song-like sound rang out, cutting Ichigo off. "Oh, it's mine," Rangiku said, slightly surprised as she pulled out her soul pager. "Wait a sec." She flipped it open, and turned to talk in to the phone. Instantaneously, her face lit up with joy and excitement. "Oh! Yes! I'd love to! Order one for me, 'kay Nanao~?" After that, she hung up and spun back around. "That was the Female Shinigami Association! I have to go now. I found something fun to do! And thanks for the offer! Bye~!"
Rangiku turned and started to run back the way she came, humming with joy.
"W-wait! What?" Ichigo croaked, reaching out towards the diminishing figure. Now he would have to keep playing Twister with his father. He was hoping the fun-loving lieutenant would take his place so he could go to the mall and spend some time in the arcade trying to beat the race car game's high score.
Ichigo and his father stood in the doorway to their home, dumbfounded at the woman's spontaneous outburst. Silence fell for a few moments until it was broken by Mr. Kurosaki.
"What's a Female Shinigami Association?"
"Oh, wow! You look great in a gigai, Nanao~!" Rangiku exclaimed as she examined the vice-president of the Female Shinigami Association. The other members would have come, but they were too busy with work in the Soul Society. "So, what's the news about this 'car' and this 'license'?"
The two women were in a little park close to Orihime's house. They were standing under a tall tree to get away from the heat of the sun. Children were running around playing games on the playground.
Nanao held onto a clipboard that she had brought with her, and pushed up her glasses with her middle finger. "We have learned about people's transportation, but more about cars than anything else. People use cars to travel around quickly. We would also use them in the same way when we are in gigais. The Female Shinigami Association has unanimously decided that we should try one of these transportation devices. The members testing one of these vehicles would have to be at least 190 years old since people need to be at least 18 to drive in the World of the Living."
"Ooooh!" Rangiku cooed excitedly, "I wanna try!"
"Uh… Yes, of course." Nanao said hesitantly, clearing her throat. She then glanced at her clipboard and pulled a plastic card out of her pocket, and then handed it to Rangiku.
On the card was Rangiku's picture, the month and day of her birthday, her current age in World of the Living years, a fake address, and many other things — along with Rangiku signature that was photo-copied from one of the many pieces of paperwork she was forced to do by her captain.
"Oh! Wow! So, this is like a permit for driving?" Rangiku asked, examining the license. "Hmm… I look good in this picture… Good choice, Nanao~!"
The picture was from the swimsuit contest the Female Shinigami Association had for fundraising. Rangiku remembered that she was wearing a tight yellow bikini that showed off her curves. Many male Shinigami came because she was in it. She and Yoruichi were the main attractions. Even her captain came, but he only came to yell at her to get back to the office. The only thing about the picture that disappointed Rangiku was that Nanao had cut the picture so people could only see her neck and face.
Nanao nodded brusquely in thanks for the compliment, and then handed Rangiku a piece of paper of some sort. "Fill in this check when you buy the car," Nanao explained as Rangiku stared at the small, rectangular check like she would at paperwork.
"Oh, okay." Matsumoto sighed. "I can't believe they involve paperwork with cars… But, I guess it's worth it."
Rangiku Matsumoto was on Orihime's couch; her legs were crossed and propped on one armrest while her head rested on the other. She was flipping through car advertisements, magazines, and newspapers, searching for the perfect car. But all the cars she found looked ugly, and she couldn't afford the good ones with the money she was given.
"Matsumoto, what are you doing?" Tôshirô asked with his arms crossed as he towered over Rangiku. "You should be writing your report by now."
"Hm? Oh, but, Captain!" Rangiku whined looking up from what she was doing. "This 'paperwork' is WAY more important than all of that OTHER paperwork!" — she was very happy to say something like that and actually have a good reason behind her excuse — "This could be our new way of moving from one place to another over long distances in a short periods of time in a gigai! I'm one of the CHOSENto test one of these things out!" Then, she swiped out her license and showed it to her captain. "See? I even got a permit!"
"Well, if it's really THAT important, then I'll write the report until you're finished," Tôshirô sighed in defeat, and walked away.
"Okay, Captain! Toodaloo~!" Rangiku waved. The Shinigami flipped through the magazine, quickly scanning through the prices and pictures.
Finally, Matsumoto flipped to the last page; the thick back cover making a snap. On the back cover were big, bright, flashy print, and large, gaudy pictures.
"Buy a Matumoto!
The newest brand of car!
Now, at the affordable price of only 1,629,880 yen (approximately $14,000)!"
Matsumoto's mouth curved into a smile as she snickered. At first, she thought it was her name on the tacky advertisement. The car in the picture was small, bright red, and fit to Rangiku's tastes which made her extremely happy. And the best part was that she could buy it!
Tôshirô sighed as he worked on his report. His fingers were starting to ache from pushing all the tiny buttons on his soul pager. It was a pain to write reports, but it was even worse when he had to write one on a small, 2-inch screen. He had been working for a while, so he decided to take a break.
Matsumoto was acting strange. Not any stranger than usual, but still strange. She was actually concentrating on something, and not taking a nap, or getting drunk with Izuru and Shûhei. Luckily for Hitsugaya both the lieutenants previously mentioned were not in the World of the Living. He wondered what she was doing. Whatever it was he would probably find out sooner or later.
Matsumoto finally made it to the car dealership. She got out of a taxi and paid the driver. As the taxi drove away, Rangiku thought about how she hated that she had to pay to ride in the yellow car. The car was an ugly shade of mustard yellow and the interior of the car looked like it hadn't been cleaned for centuries. There were drink stains and chewing gum on the seats. There were also the faint smells of cigarette smoke and sweat wafting about in the little car. It made Rangiku sick just thinking about the taxi. When she got her own car, the inside would always stay pristine and it would smell like a new car bought only yesterday.
She walked into the building. The dealership was very modern-looking. There were plenty of windows to let in natural light, and the floor looked like you could eat off of it. There was a long desk near the back wall, and there were some office doors behind the desk. On another wall to the left of the desk, were posters of cars. Also, inside the building were two cars on circular pedestals. Matsumoto thought it was strange that the cars were inside the building since she was told they were used for transportation and not decorations.
A salesman came out of one of the office rooms behind the desk and walked to Matsumoto. "Hello! How may I help you?" he asked kindly with a smile on his face.
"Hi!" Rangiku greeted cheerfully. "Do you have this car?" she pointed to the advertisement that she had torn off the back cover of the magazine she was looking through earlier.
The salesman gave the ripped piece of paper a quick glance and nodded. "Yes, we do have that new brand of car. It's quite popular with teens. Would you like to see one?"
"Oh, yes!" an eager Matsumoto quickly responded. She felt like a little kid on Christmas day about to open her presents.
The pair walked outside to a white canopy close to the dealership building. Underneath it was a red Matumoto just like the one from the picture in the ad. The hood shone in the sunlight, and the red paint seemed to shimmer.
Rangiku gave the outside of the car a very thorough examination. She ran her fingers over the different parts of the car. She even opened the hood to examine the engine, although she didn't know anything about the mechanics. Satisfied with the outside, Rangiku asked if she could look at the interior.
"Of course!" the salesperson replied with a grin on his face. He took the car key out of his pocket and opened the driver's side door. "There you go!"
"Thanks!" Rangiku smiled. She poked her head inside to see that the car had all the usual things a car would have in the front seat. "This is great!" she exclaimed.
The salesman nodded at her praise for the car. "Would you like to take it for a spin around the parking lot?"
Rangiku dove into the driver's seat before the man could object. "Let's go!"
Matsumoto driving a car, what could possibly go wrong? The controls and gauges were about the same like in games she had played; the only difference was she would now be driving in reality. Rangiku had plenty of driving experience in race car games and almost always beat Orihime and Rukia in race car games. Rangiku even held the high score in the car racing game that was in the mall's arcade. She couldn't wait to show her captain and wondered what he would think. He'll probably be begging to take a ride! Plus, Orihime told me it's every boy's dream to ride in a sleek, fast car at high speeds with a pretty girl! And that pretty girl would be me! So, Captain's all set!
It was getting late in the afternoon, and Tôshirô finally finished the report and sent it to Head-Captain Yamamoto. Once again, he did it without his lieutenant's help. After sitting around Orihime's apartment for an hour doing absolutely nothing, he decided to go to Urahara's shop to have some company. As he got up from a chair he had dragged over to the window, he wondered where Rangiku could be. He only hoped that she wasn't getting herself into too much trouble. I guess I better find her before she gets arrested… he thought to himself.
Captain Hitsugaya finally found his way to the Urahara Shop. The little shack looked as rundown as always. Random empty cardboard boxes were strewn in front of the store from the latest shipment from the Soul Society. Tôshirô kicked away a few of the empty boxes and knocked on the door.
The door was opened and the young captain was greeted by the eccentric shop owner who always wore a green and white striped hat and wooden clogs. "Ah! Captain Hitsugaya! What a pleasure to see you here!" Urahara greeted cheerfully. "We were just about to have some coffee! Would you like to join us?"
"No thanks. I came here to visit Renji," the young captain replied in a businesslike tone.
"I see. Then, let me get him for you!" the shop owner cleared his throat as if preparing to make a speech. "REENJIII! CAPTAIN HITSUGAYA WANTS TO PUMMLE YOU~!" The scream scared a few birds away and echoed through the tiny shop.
"Wait, WHAT?" a rough voice bellowed from another room in the little building. Renji ran into the room and nearly tripped over an empty box. He was unsure of what Tôshirô wanted. "What did I ever do to the lil' guy!"
"Renji wants to know what he did to you!" Urahara grinned and with his folded white fan the shop owner pointed to Renji.
"I heard him loud and clear…" Tôshirô replied dryly; a growl slowly creeping into his voice. "I didn't want to do anything to him, but now that he called me 'little', I think I will… And if you two keep screaming, I'll pummel you both!"
"WAIT, WHAT! AND WHY ARE YOU HERE!" Renji demanded shouting once more; completely ignoring the death threat and the fact he was screaming at the top of his lungs to a superior officer.
"If I hear anymore screaming from anyone, don't blame me if you freeze to death…"
The temperature in the entire shop seemed to drop a few degrees, confirming that the tenth captain was serious about his threat. The entire shop went silent. Everyone was afraid of breathing for fear of being turned into a human popsicle.
Tôshirô sighed. He shouldn't get stressed over such a small thing. He had bigger things to worry about. "Why did you say that I wanted to pummel Renji, Urahara?"
"Why? Well, you never ask for someone outside your squad, unless they're in a squad for a mission. Either that, or you really wanna pummel them!" Urahara explained, holding up a victory sign.
Once again, Tôshirô sighed, defeated and somewhat annoyed with Urahara's twisted logic. "The truth is I was wondering if any of you have seen my lieutenant."
"Lieutenant Matsumoto?" Renji questioned. "No, haven't seen her. Why?"
Tôshirô groaned in annoyance. Looking for his lieutenant was giving him a headache. "I haven't seen her since early this afternoon. I thought she might have come here…"
"I haven't seen her," Urahara said rubbing his chin thoughtfully. "Maybe she went to the mall!"
"The mall?" Tôshirô and Renji repeated. "What's that?"
"Wow, Tôshirô. I didn't think you were the type of person to lose your lieutenant…" a new voice commented. "And both of you have never heard of a mall?"
Everyone turned to look at the new uninvited guest. It was Ichigo. Tôshirô frowned at the taller boy. How long had he been eavesdropping on his private conversation?
"That's Captain Hitsugaya to you…"
"Whatever. Anyway, I saw her earlier this morning at my house. She was going to play Twister with me and my father, but she got a call from some sort of association." Ichigo paused for a moment to think. "I think it was called the Female Shinigami Association or something like that."
"Great, just great. Who knows what she's doing! The Female Shinigami Association always seems to up to no good. I remember the time they switched all the Soul Candy."
"Don't remind me…" Renji groaned. "My gigai kept falling asleep during the kendo match while we were away fighting hollows."
"That reminds me of when I first used the Soul Candy…" the orange-haired boy shivered. "Years of attitude flushed down the drain! H-he… Kon… H-he kissed O-Orihime…" (vol. 2 pg. 126)
"Let's get back to the original topic. We better go look for Lieutenant Matsumoto in that mall place," Renji said. "And what exactly is a mall!"
"It's sad that you don't know what a mall is," Ichigo snickered. "And I thought you said you were an expert of everything in the World of the Living…"
"Yeah, I don't know what a mall is! You got a problem with that?" Renji yelled.
"I don't!" Ichigo roared back. "And that was the WORST come-back EVER!"
"SHADDUP! I DON'T CARE! WE DON'T HAVE MALL THINGS IN THE SEIREITEI!"
"WELL THAT'S OBVIOUS BECAUSE YOU'RE ASKING ME WHAT A MALL IS, IDIOT!
"WOULD YOU TWO JUST SHUT UP!" Tôshirô interrupted before the two got into a real fight. "Ichigo, just tell me where the mall is."
"Hunh? Why?" Ichigo asked confused, completely forgetting about his previous argument with Renji. "Are you planning on going there by yourself?"
"Yeah, how else would I get there?"
"Uh… No offense, Tôshirô… People might try to abduct you because… Well, you know… You're… You know…"
"No, I don't know."
"Y-you look like a little kid."
"How many times do I have to remind you! It's CAPTAIN Hitsugaya!" the short boy snapped. "And, I'm NOT a LITTLE KID!"
Ichigo sighed as he watched Tôshirô glare ice daggers at him; trying to force out the mall's location. "I'm coming with you. I need to get away from my dad for awhile."
"I might as well come along too." Renji yawned. "I have nothing better to do and you never know what Ichigo might get himself into. I'm coming to be adult supervision."
"ADULT SUPERVISION?" Ichigo roared, trying to incite another argument.
"I don't remember asking either of you for your help," Tôshirô interrupted, frowning. "But I suppose you can… Just stay out of my way."
"SHUT UP, SQUIRT!" the other Shinigami said in unison.
Ichigo, Renji, and Tôshirô finally made it to the mall. The three stood in front of the large imposing building under the roof that was above the entrance. The front entrance had many large glass panels to let in sunlight. Even the doors were made out of clear glass. The panels were separated by long white strips that went horizontally and vertically. In front of the glass doors there was red brick instead of black pavement. It reached all the way to the large white pillars that held up the ceiling.
The three boys had taken a taxi since Ichigo didn't want to get his "crazy" father involved. The ride wasn't exactly what someone could call pleasant. It seemed to Tôshirô that every five seconds he was yelling at the other two to stop fist fighting or arguing over every little comment the other made. He knew the first thing he was getting in the mall was a bottle or two of aspirins.
"So this is a mall?" Tôshirô questioned Ichigo flatly. "It's very… Big."
"Yeah, I'd think you could get lost in there." Renji commented. "Since you haven't answered my question yet, I'll ask again for the last time. What exactly is a mall!"
"It's pretty much just a lot of different shops and restaurants. Most of the kids from school come down here to hang weekends and after school." Ichigo responded.
"This would be heaven for Matsumoto…" Tôshirô moaned. "Well, we better get started."
The three were about to walk in, but they heard a familiar voice trying to get their attention. They all turned to see who was yelling at them. The sight they saw almost made Tôshirô's jaw drop to the pavement, but he contained his horror. Ichigo and Renji, on the other hand, let their mouths hang open.
Squad Ten's lieutenant was sitting in front of them in red car and waving. A smile was graced on her lips as she watched the reactions of the other Shinigami.
"That's a nice car." Ichigo called over to Rangiku as he and the others walked over to her.
"Matsumoto, return this car immediately!" Tôshirô said sternly. "I don't trust you with driving."
"Aww! But, Captain! Did you have to be so blunt?" Rangiku whined as she gave her captain puppy-dog eyes. "I just bought Kuruma! She's the newest brand of car!"
"WHAT!" Tôshirô yelped in shock and horror, losing his usual composure. "YOU BOUGHT THAT THING! WHERE ON EARTH DID YOU GET THE MONEY! IT BETTER NOT BE OUT OF THE SQUAD'S BUDGET!"
All around the four Shinigami, people were quickly walking away from the short boy. Mothers with small children were quickly nudging them into the mall while they gave Tôshirô nervous looks. Others just stared wondering what caused the random outburst. Even Tôshirô's companions flinched back slightly.
"Now, now, Captain!" Rangiku said while trying to soothe her fuming superior. "I got the money from the Female Shinigami Association! There's no need to make such a huge fuss!"
"Can you even drive?" Tôshirô questioned trying to tame his temper. "And why on earth did you name your car 'car'!"
"Because I like the word!" Rangiku huffed. "Besides, our zanpakuto have names! Why can't my car have one?"
"She does have a good point." Ichigo agreed.
"Shut up! I didn't ask you!" Tôshirô hissed. "Is this what you were doing instead of writing your report?"
"Well, it was a type of paperwork," Matsumoto defended. "I told you before! Do you have any idea how hard it is to pick a car? I had to decided color, cost, style, brand, and a lot of other things. You know what I mean, Captain?"
"No, I don't!"
Ichigo and Renji didn't share Captain Hitsugaya's reaction. They really liked the Matumoto. Ichigo understood the car's fundamentals and played with its accessories. It was fun to push the button that rolled the windows up and down. Renji didn't know how a car worked. He only liked it because it was the same color as his hair which gave the little car a "masculine-look."
"Hey, could we hop in?" Ichigo asked. "It would be nice to drive, but Renji and I don't have licenses…"
"Yeah! C'mon Captain Hitsugaya! This'll be great!" Renji said. He then grabbed Tôshirô like a sack of potatoes, opened the passenger seat door, and threw him in like a captive being abducted.
"Wait, we need to get him a booster seat for him," Ichigo said, "He's not over 4'9'' yet."
"Right," Renji nodded, not exactly knowing what he was agreeing to, but he wasn't going to let Ichigo know that. For now, he would just agree and suffer the consequences later.
"Okay, here's the money left over from buying the car," Matsumoto said, handing Renji the money. Immediately, Renji took it and ran into the mall to look for and buy a booster seat for Tôshirô.
"… What's a 'booster seat'?" Tôshirô asked curiously, hopping out of the car only to have Ichigo shove him back in. Ichigo was glad that the little captain didn't comment about not being over 4'9''.
"It's an elevated seat for LITTLE, SHORT KIDS in ELEMENTARY SCHOOL because they are TOO SMALL and would NOT be SAFE in a car WITHOUT ONE," Rangiku replied in a matter-of-fact tone. She never accented any of the words, but to Tôshirô's ears they were.
"MATSUMOTO!" Tôshirô screamed. "IF YOU DIDN'T REMEMBER I'M 150-YEARS-OLD AND THAT EQUALS 15-YEARS-OLD HERE!"
"Sh! Not so loud," Ichigo warned, putting his index finger to his lips. "Nobody has ever lived for 150 years, especially if they look like ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTS! You look like an 8-YEAR-OLD with snowy hair! People will get suspicious. They might think you're crazy and send you to a mental institution!"
"SHUT UP! I DON'T CARE!"
Ichigo knew he had to stop the snowy captain from screaming. He looked around the back seat of the car to see if there was anything he could use to tie Tôshirô up. The orange-haired boy found something. Ichigo quickly tackled Tôshirô and grabbed the seatbelt closest to him and proceeded to wrap it around Tôshirô's ankles. As Ichigo did so, Tôshirô was trying to get the taller boy to stop what he was doing by kicking and squirming, but Ichigo was persistent.
"You two are making a bigger scene. You should have let Captain continue screaming. Then, people outside would think he's a little kid on a temper tantrum," Rangiku commented as she watched the two Shinigami wrestle in the back seat. "And be careful! This is a new car! That means you pay for any damages that you cause."
"Yeah, I keep that in mind!" Ichigo grunted as finally finished tying up Tôshirô. Now, Tôshirô's wrists were also tied, and he was laying face-down on the back seat. That was Ichigo's attempt to gag Tôshirô which was currently succeeding.
Finally the red haired Shinigami came out of the mall carrying a brown cardboard box. The box had a picture of a booster seat and black print warning to keep away from children.
"Renji, what took you so long? Did you have a nice walk while I was sitting here in a car that didn't have the AC on!" Ichigo queried.
"Sorry, I didn't know where to get a booster seat, and… I got lost."
"Got lost where!"
Renji's face reddened in embarrassment, and he gave a little cough. "In women's lingerie…"
The other Shinigami burst out in laughter. Even the gagged Tôshirô couldn't resists a small laugh. They could not experience of fathom the pain of many female giggles as Renji franticly tried to escape the clothing rack maze of lingerie. Matsumoto wouldn't understand if she was ever in that situation because she is a woman and probably would have been laughing at him too. Renji was positive Ichigo and Tôshirô would sympathize what he went through, but apparently not. The Substitute-Shinigami looked as if he was going to die from laughter and Renji could only hear the Tenth Captain's muffled chuckles. Renji felt so betrayed by his fellow male Shinigami. The lingerie trip was horrifying and so much more. The lieutenant knew he would be scared for life.
"Anyway, what happened to you, and where's Captain Hitsugaya?" Renji asked as he realized that he could not see Tôshirô and that Ichigo was covered in bruises.
"Rangiku, you tell him," Ichigo gasped as he rested his head on the seat in front of him, tears of laughter still streaming down his cheeks.
"Hm… Where should I start? I could start at the end, or I could start with all the insults, or —"
"I'd prefer you'd not tell him," Tôshirô interrupted.
Renji and Rangiku turned to look at Captain Hitsugaya. They had to try to contain their laughter as they looked at Tôshirô's predicament, but the two were unsuccessful. Seeing the young captain tied up looking utterly defenseless was a one in a life time chance. They were going to relish it.
"Anyway, how does the booster seat thing get in the car?" Rangiku asked, finally calming down from all the hilarity. "As long as it doesn't hurt my baby, I'm fine with it."
"Don't worry. It won't," Ichigo said as he opened the cardboard box. "It just needs to be held in by a few straps.
"Oh! Phew!" the ginger-orange haired lieutenant sighed in relief. "How do you know so much about these things?"
"A) I live in the World of the Living. B) I have two younger sisters who used to sit in one of these things. C) I used to sit in a booster seat. And D) I'm reading the directions."
"Good job, Ichigo," Renji said sarcastically. "I was going to give you a compliment for being smart, but I take it back."
"Can someone UNTIE ME!" Tôshirô interjected. He had managed to roll onto his side so he could breathe.
"No, you're staying tied up until I put you in the car seat!" Ichigo said as he continued to read the booster seat directions. "I don't want you escaping."
After about 15 minutes full of pointless arguments and more yelling, Ichigo and Renji finally figured out how to put the booster seat in the car. Rangiku "supervised" their work to make sure they didn't rip the car's upholstery. Ichigo untied Tôshirô, and with a little help from the other Shinigami, he got the shorter boy into the seat and buckled him in with only a few more minor injuries.
"Awww!" Rangiku cooed. "Captain, you look so cuute!"
"Maybe I should take a picture of you to show Lieutenant Hinamori! Then she could see how cute you look~!"
"You wouldn't dare…"
"Too late~!" Matsumoto smiled cynically. She held up her soul pager to Tôshirô. In the picture, the young captain was glaring at the camera with his arms folded across his chest.
"Don't you DARE show that to Hinamori!" Tôshirô growled while trying to reach for the phone, but Rangiku held it just out of his grasp. "DELETE THAT PICTURE THIS INSTANT!"
"Just do it!" Ichigo said exhausted. "I've had enough of his screaming for one day."
"Alright!" Matsumoto whined childishly. "Let's see… How do you delete pictures on this thing?"
"Let me do it," Tôshirô sighed exasperated. He once again reached forward to get the phone, but the seat belt pulled him back. "I HATE this…"
"Oh! I got it!" Matsumoto said happily. She pressed a button on her phone and then showed the others.
Ichigo, Renji, and Tôshirô all looked at the phone. After a quick glance, Ichigo felt really sorry for the female lieutenant. Renji threw his hands up into the air in despair. Rangiku was oblivious to what she had just done. Tôshirô glared at the word on the phone's little screen. The screen continued to flash the words innocently just as clueless as the ginger haired lieutenant. The word "sending…" continued to flicker in small white print.
"MATSUMOTO!" Tôshirô howled.
"I'm so sorry!" Rangiku flustered as she realized the "mortal sin" she had just committed. "I-it was an accident!"
"Stop it before it's too late!"
"It's too late, Tôshirô," Ichigo stated calmly. "It's going to be sent to whoever she sent the picture to."
"Who did she send it to?" Renji asked curiously.
Rangiku looked at the phone number to see who received the picture of her captain. After reading the name next to the set of numbers, she wished that she had made her will. This might be her last day alive and she silently hoped that her death wouldn't be too painful. She could see it all now. Her friends would gather around at her funeral mourning over her, and her captain standing in the background. She could even see the epitaph on her headstone. "Rangiku Matsumoto: The busty lieutenant of Squad 10. Loyal to her captain, but hated when he ordered her to do her paperwork. Loved to get drunk with lieutenants Kira and Hisagi. Died by captain freezing her to death with Hyorinmaru because she sent an embarrassing picture of him to—"
"Earth to, Rangiku! Earth to, Rangiku! Are you there?" Ichigo asked while poking her arm; interrupting her train of thought.
"Oh! Uh… Sorry!"
"So, who did you send the picture to?"
"Um… I sent it to all the…"
"All the…? All the what!" a very impatient Tôshirô asked.
"To…" Rangiku gulped and tried to stop her hands from quivering. "To the entire Seireitei."
"YOU SENT IT TO THE ENTIRE SEIREITEI!" Tôshirô shouted. "HOW ON EARTH DID YOU DO THAT!"
Suddenly, Rangiku's phone let out a little ding signaling everyone that the picture had been sent. With the push of a little button, Matsumoto had just ruined his reputation in the Seireitei for who knows how long. All the time he had spent trying to gain the respect of the older captains had just been lost in a matter of seconds.
"I must have selected the wrong name," Matsumoto replied meekly. "And you remember there's a number that sends things to everyone… Right?"
Tôshirô was about to snap at his lieutenant again, but all the anger and rage inside of him seemed to run out of fuel when he thought about going back to the Seireitei. The thought of staying in the World of the Living suddenly seem appealing for once.
"There's nothing we can do now," Tôshirô sighed, finally starting to calm down. "The entire Seireitei will see me in a car seat… I'm going to be hearing a lot about this later…"
"You're dead, Tôshirô…" Ichigo said finally. "Wait… SEND IT TO ME!"
"Okay~!" Rangiku said jubilantly. Once again she sent the picture of Tôshirô, but this time on purpose.
"I'm going to freeze all of you when we get back to the Soul Society…" Captain Hitsugaya threatened.
"You always use that threat! It's getting old since you never follow through with any of your threats," Renji stated as he dove into the back seat furthest from Tôshirô. He opened his soul pager to see the picture of Captain Hitsugaya's demise. This might come in handy for black mail… he thought.
"Yeah!" Ichigo agreed, opening the back seat door, he got out of the car to get in the passenger front seat. "Hey, Rangiku? Do you even know how to drive?
"What do you mean?"
"I mean, have you taken drivers' ed.? That's how you got your driver's license, right?" Ichigo continued, but now fear and worry were edging into his voice.
"Oh! So, that's how people in this world get a driving permit!" the 10th lieutenant said enlightened. "Nanao ordered mine!"
"Now, let's go~!" Ichigo was barely able to shut the car door before Rangiku slammed her foot down hard on the gas pedal.
While Matsumoto was driving, Tôshirô contemplated what would happen once he, Rangiku, and Renji got back to the Soul Society. Well, he already knew what would happen to the other two. They would become frozen stalagmites in the middle of the Seireitei for all to see. But what he really wanted to know was what would happen to his standing in the 13 Court Guard Squads.
The ride in the Matumoto was loathsome for everyone except Matsumoto. The ride was entirely the opposite of smooth. It was uneven, rough, and intermittent. Ichigo was hollering at Rangiku to slow down, and Renji looked like he was getting car sick. And those two thought the ride would be fun… Captain Hitsugaya thought to some amusement. For once today he was glad he was in the car seat. He knew if they got into an accident he would be the safest one in the car.
"RANGIKU! FOR THE MILLIONTH TIME AND LAST TIME! SLOW DOWN!" Ichigo wailed over the roar of the car's engine. "CAN'T YOU SEE YOU'RE OVER THE SPEED LIMIT!"
"What's a speed limit?" Rangiku asked as she finally complied with Ichigo's demand.
Ichigo glared at the Shinigami and tried to calmly explain the definition of a speed limit. "It's the speed that you're supposed to drive when on a road and it varies on different roads. If the police catch you going over the limit, they'll give you a ticket. Then, they'll put something on your permanent record. If you get too many speeding tickets, you might get your license suspended."
"So this speeding ticket is like a ticket to the movies?" Rangiku questioned, not quite understanding what the Substitute-Shinigami was trying to say.
"Sorta… But the ticket says you have to go someplace and pay a fine for speeding."
"I get it!" Rangiku lied. She had absolutely no idea where Ichigo was going with this conversation. "But anyway, you're home, Ichigo!"
"Hunh? Really?" Ichigo turned to look out the car window. "I'm surprised you knew the way from the mall to my house…"
"I'm surprised that we're all still alive…" Renji groaned.
"You're both just like Captain!" Rangiku whined. "You all have such little faith in me!"
Suddenly there was a huge bump that sent Renji crashing into Tôshirô and his booster seat. Ichigo let out a yelp as he hit his head into the car window. Rangiku acted as if nothing happened. She then said in a nonchalant tone, "I think I ran over something…"
As Matsumoto and her three passengers drove off they did not hear someone calling out. The only thing the person said was "mough."
Okay! This is not the end! I have an epilogue and hope to post it soon, but I've had this for months and it was annoying me that the epilogue was the only thing holding me back. This is my second story and hopefully not as terrible as the first. Please review! You don't have to say much, but I'd like a little feed back... Pretty please? I give magical muffins!