A/N: After going back, reading reviews and just generally looking into my previous story, I decided to go through with this. People really enjoyed Akihiko (Yay! xD) and you all seemed to enjoy Ichigo and Rukia, as well as all the other characters. I decided that I will write this to be the OFFICIAL sequel to Bleach: Bankai's and Gigai's. I feel Bleach: Hollowed may have been too large a step forward in time, and as such this will focus primarily on Akihiko and his building of relationships, and how they progress, as well as some snippets on Ichigo and Rukia! Okay, done rambling now….please, enjoy:
DISCLAIMER: I don't own Bleach, but I do claim rights to Akihiko. Though, at this point, he's still single ladies!
DISCLAIMER II: Go back and read Bleach: Bankai's and Gigai's before reading this, or you will be totally lost.
Chapter 1: Re-Establishment
Akihiko Nakamura awoke with a groan as a stream of bright light invaded his room. Truthfully, it had been there for sometime—the sun had a tendency of that—but it had finally driven the new Captain from his alcohol induced sleep. He lazily opened his emerald eyes, squinting immediately and letting out another groan, before voicing his displeasure.
"Who in the name of the King made the sun so bright!"
There was no response, of course, and the new Captain draped his arm over his eyes. His mind was still trying to process everything that had happened the night prior. He remembered his "trial" and how he had been formally accepted back into the Seireitei as a seated Captain…and he remembered saying goodbye to Kurosaki and Rukia…
He frowned at this. Even though he and Rukia had talked, and settled what could have been so much more, he was…loathe letting her go like that. There wouldn't be another one like her, he knew. Assertive, petite, beautiful, and just genuinely interesting…again, he referred to her as his little 'spitfire'.
Letting out a sigh, he let the arm drop off his face. He squinted at the sun and then stared at the ceiling. After they had left there was a massive party—not just for his new Division, but for the entirety of Seireitei. He and Kurosaki had helped avert another crisis…well, he had found it out. Kurosaki was the one to put it to rest, of course. Aki found himself grinning at that. He would always be his rival, and he may have beaten him in matters concerning a certain Kuchiki princess, but Aki would find a way to eventually beat him.
The party had been…well, awesome. He had hung around with all the Captains who had attended. All of them were familiar faces, of course. He had seen them growing up, and even as he made his way through the ranks. He was even considered for Captainship before that damned incident.
Jushiro Ukitake was there—and of course Shunsui Kyoraku as well. Both of them had been Captains for as long as Akihiko could remember. Unohana was there as well, though she didn't partake in the drinking—and she had stated she would only be there for medicinal purpose. Apparently parties got out of a hand whenever the 11th was around—which they were in abundance.
Zaraki Kenpaichi was there as well, and while he wasn't trying to pressure him to fight (apparently he had a tendency to do that with the new Captains) Aki felt like he was being sized up. Akihiko was a big guy, but he certainly didn't want to clash swords with that man any time soon. Anybody that was as scarred as he was certainly wasn't someone Aki wanted to get into a fight with. If he was still standing, with that many scars, he had probably killed that many more men.
A grin came to Akihiko at this point, and he remembered Byakuya Kuchiki had been there as well. While the uptight noble didn't drink, Aki could have swore he had seen a smile on his face at least once that night. He'd have to tease the man later.
Tohsiro Hitsugaya was there, as well as his already drunk Lieutenant, Rangiku Matsumoto. Toshiro was a likable enough kid, wise and mature beyond his years—but Aki supposed when dealing with a Lieutenant like his, he'd have to be. He was reserved, and didn't drink—Rangiku was quick to point out he was 'under age'—but he and Aki had talked for a good couple of hours, and the new Captain felt he could make friends easily with the man.
At this, his thoughts drifted to the many females present—and he grinned again.
His own Lieutenant, Momo Hinamori, wasn't that bad looking…he'd admit. She was plain, but she was cute and dutiful…he'd admit she had very wifely qualities, but he wasn't about to just run in and propose to her. She seemed attracted to him, or at least he felt so…but he merely wrote it off. It'd be an avenue he could walk down later.
There was the beauty from the 8th, too. Nanao Ise. Akihiko had found her particularly interesting, but after seeing her and Shunsui interact, he decided she was taken. Toshiro's Lieutenant was just too..bold for Akihiko's liking. He liked women who could take charge, but Rangiku just screamed 'I'm comfortable in nothing' and it slightly took him off guard. He wasn't sure if this was a façade or if she really was just that outgoing.
The rest of it got hazy, and Akihiko wasn't even sure how he had gotten home—or even where home was! He supposed it was somewhere in the 5th Division, but he wasn't so sure. It was then he remembered that today would be the day that the Nakamura Clan would begin it's restoration. Figures the Head Captain would make such important matters on a day when three quarters of the Seireitei would be stumbling from hangovers. Sighing, he pushed himself up and let the covers from his bedding fall back.
He raised a brow noting that he was clad in really…nothing. Well, he'd admit, that wasn't odd. What was odd was that his dirty clothes were nowhere to be found and a clean shihakusho—complete with haori—was folded up at the end of the futon. Rubbing his messy ebon locks, he shook his head. No use thinking about it.
Standing, he crossed the room and opened the door, his head poking out and looking both ways. He'd really like to bathe before heading out, and he noticed that he was indeed in the barracks. What made him frown was that it was…dead. Either people were still drunk and asleep, or it was really late, and judging by the sun earlier, it was still pretty early.
He shut the door and moved back to gather his clothes and begin to dress. With his pants on loosely, he reached down to grab the shihakusho when he heard the door open and a small squeal come from it.
Turning his emerald eyes, he stood frozen in place with one hand holding up his pants—which still hung loosely off his hips—and one hand down securing the upper part of his uniform.
Momo Hinamori stood with wide eyes as her new commanding officer stood half naked staring back. Time seemed to stop for the two. Momo looked over his form. It was well built and sculpted, and she could imagine his well toned and built muscles rippling with every movement he'd make. There were still a bunch of scars on his form that wouldn't ever heal fully, but her eyes slid over those as easily as the rest of his body.
Akihiko stood dumbfounded as his new Lieutenant—the girl he had encouraged to join the Seireitei in the first place—looked him over. He watched her eyes scan him as if he was there strictly for her viewing pleasure, and he also watched as the scarlet color crept up her neck and to her face and cheeks before she let out another, cry leaped back and slammed the door shut.
Aki couldn't deny the heat that went up the back of his neck at that point. Her voice came muffled as he pulled the upper part of the uniform on and began to feed it into his pants, tucking it.
"Sorry taicho! I thought you'd still be asleep and I'd come and check up on you," her soft voice came and Akihiko couldn't help but grin. Ammunition!
"Oh? So my Lieutenant is worried about me, is it," Akihiko called back and he could have swore she shifted at that.
"Ah, i-it's just, you drank so much last night…"
Akihiko stood straight, staring at the wall for a second before nodding and continuing getting dressed. Fair enough..
"Do you know how I got back here," Akihiko called back.
"I brought you back, taicho" her voice came back and then she continued tentatively, "and placed out a change of clothes for you."
Akihiko raised a brow at this. And then it clicked. "Momo," he began, and she answered.
"Did you remove my clothes and put me to bed?"
Silence. And then…
"Y, y, yes taicho. I didn't want you waking up in…dirty clothes," she replied.
Akihiko grinned evilly. Throwing on his haori he opened the door to see her standing there, wringing her hands and even redder than she had been when she shut the door.
"If you wanted to see me naked, you could have just asked—if I was so drunk!"
If the 5th Division was still asleep, the wail that the petite Lieutenant put out surely woke them up.
Akihiko made his way to the 1st Division's grounds and to the Captain's meeting area. He would be early, but he could mull around and talk to his new peers while he waited. As his feet padded down the familiar walk ways, he took note of a familiar reiatsu ahead of him. Grinning evilly for the second time that day, the new Captain made haste.
He appeared just as the owner of the reiatsu rounded the corner to the straightaway that led to the gates to the 1st Division. His arm was slung around the man's shoulder, causing him to stop.
"Good day, Byakuya," Akihiko said heartily. Byakuya, who had stiffened, immediately shot the man a deadly glare before reaching around and securing his wrist in two fingers and removing it distastefully.
"Do not speak to me as if we are equals, Nakamura," Byakuya replied evenly before continuing to walk, Akihiko moving to match his stride with a wide grin on his face.
What Byakuya wouldn't give to wipe that stupid grin off his wretched face…
"Hm, you're right, we're not equals. Technically, since the Nakamura Clan was restored, that means I'm of the top noble family" Akihiko shot back, his grin widening as he saw Byakuya's face twitch, "above the Kuchiki."
"Not yet it isn't, Nakamura. Please do remember that until the Nakamura Clan recovers it's assets that it will be beneath the Kuchiki," Byakuya replied cooly. This…heathen was testing the limits of his patience. Not even Kenpaichi could get him this riled up—and this man was supposed to be a noble!
Akihiko shrugged and took a step away as he replied, "Wouldn't be the first time I was under a Kuchiki."
Byakuya nearly lost his restraint, his arm twitching noticeably as if to backhand the man. He merely spoke, though, his voice strained. "But it will certainly be the last."
Akihiko let out a sigh, folding his arms behind his head as he walked next to Byakuya. He would have to try a different angle then. "I would agree. What, I mean with that ryoka taking her off into the sunset. How far the mighty have fallen to let one of their clan run off to the Real—"
"If you are trying to upset me, Nakamura, you are failing. That boy may be a ryoka, but he is better for my sister than a fallen noble without a cent to his name," Byakuya interjected as he turned to regard Akihiko with a cool gaze. And he almost smirked at the look of shock on Akihiko's face as he stopped walking. Byakuya continued walking, only to call back: "You should continue to the meeting. It would be disastrous for a noble to be late for a meeting that regards the fate of their powerful and majestic house."
Akihiko stood, his mood visibly darkened, across from Byakuya. The man wouldn't meet his gaze. He was an implacable, immovable, steel wall who merely stared at the wall past Akihiko. He swore—swore—that he saw the man crack a grin, and that made him want to leap over and throttle the lithe man. Damned pink petal Zanpaku-to wielding—
"Good afternoon. As everyone knows we are all gathered here to discuss the re-establishment of the Nakamura Clan as a noble house within the hierarchy of the Gotei 13. I start by stating that the leader of this Clan, by default, is the only surviving member: Akihiko Nakamura," the Head Captain Yamamoto had began.
Akihiko could have sworn there was that smirk again when the Head Captain said 'by default' but Akihiko bit back any outburst and merely nodded and bowed politely. "Thank you, Head Captain."
The elder Head Captain nodded at his affirmation, and continued. "The first order of business, then, is to discuss funding and grievance funding from the Gotei 13. The Central 46 has expressed a deep regret for having unjustly nearly wiped out an entire noble house, and has stated that it will help with re-building the former Nakamura Clan compound, as well as hiring servants to tend to it. How does the Nakamura Clan respound?"
Akihiko nearly reeled. Rebuild the entire compound? All of it? His noble house had been..well, huge. The elders weren't particular about having nobles marry commoners—though once a generation they made sure to allot one noble to be arranged to marry another, as was Akihiko's case. Other than that, of course, they pretty much allowed the family to marry whomever they chose. This alone allowed the family to become large—and when people start marrying blacksmith's daughters and shop owners children, then their business' would become the Clan's—raising their monetary intake significantly. To rebuild the entire compound—and provide workers (Akihiko refused to call them servants) to manage it was…amazing. Oh, right, he was supposed to respond.
"I-I accept," Akihiko replied, bowing. He was visibly stunned, and his voice nearly cracked at it. This caused the elder Shinigami to grin—albeit slightly—before one of the other Captains spoke up.
"Head Captain, I would also like to help fund and donate to the Clan," Shunsui had replied. He caught Akihiko's eyes and lowered his head somewhat, tipping his hat. Akihiko merely smiled.
"Me as well," replied Ukitake and Akihiko's smile widened.
"And the Nakamura Clan greatly accepts; however I do believe that if the Clan is going to be restored to it's formal rank and stature…that the nobles of the court should help," he replied, and he caught the brief flicker in Byakuya's eyes.
The Head Captain seemed to think it over for a moment, before: "Mm, agreed."
Akihiko locked eyes with Byakuya, the latter not bothering to hide the hate behind the glare.
A/N: What, you didn't think Aki would let him get away with it, did ya! xD And that's the end of the first Chapter. The Second one is being worked on as you read this, I'm sure, though I can't say for certain if it will be an IchixRuki one, or if it will still focus on Akihiko's progress. Just…stay tuned and find out! xD R&R