"This is dedicated to all the victims of the 9/11 attack and to all those affected by the horrible display of terror and inhumanity that took place that day. May God guide us to further repair the wounds of that day and keep safe the souls who were lost. God bless the U.S.A.!"
Disclaimer - I do not own Bleach.
It was eleven at night in Karakura Town, and Ichigo, Rukia, Isshin, Yuzu, and Karin decided to stay up late and just talk. No one knew why; it was a Tuesday. But they decided they would. The discussion had been random so far with the occassional outburst of Isshin, which led to him being beaten by Ichigo and Karin, but so far nothing was in total chaos.
That was about to change.
There was a sudden and desperate pounding on their front door. Ichigo opened it to reveal the scared, shocked, and worried faces of his friends Orihime, Uryu, Chad, Toshiro, and Rangiku. Something wasn't right.
"Hey guys, what's-"
"Turn on the television," Orihime suddenly spoke up in despiration.
"Guys, what is-"
"Don't argue Ichigo, turn the TV on now!"
Ichigo didn't argue as he suddenly turned around and rushed towards the TV and flipped it on. Everyone gathered around the TV and were terrified at the scene on the news. It showed the World Trade Center in New York City in the United States burning and smoking near the top. The highlights of the event read 'Plane crashes into World Trade Center'.
"Oh my God," Ichigo swears under his breath.
The rest are all but speechless. This was such a terrible tradegy. All those poor and innocent people...
"How horrible," Yuzu said sadly as a tear rolled down her cheek.
Chad nodded, "It is sad to see such a terrible tragedy. I feel sorry for the Americans."
Karin suddenly shouted for them to look at the screen...and the next image shattered their worlds.
A second plane flew into view...
...and straight into the second tower. An explosion of fire, smoke, ash, and other debris filled the sky as the second plane plowed through the South Tower. Then the horrible realization suddenly fell upon them.
This was no accident.
"Oh my God!" Yuzu practically screamed along with Rukia and Rangiku. Everyone else was in a horrified silence. Through the walls of the house you could hear the screams of people as they, too, witnessed the unthinkable.
The United States of America, probably the most powerful country on the planet, was now under an attack like none the world had ever scene. Someone had intentionally hijacked two planes and flew them straight into the World Trade Center. Then something clicked.
"Oh my God..." Karin began. "That was a passenger plane. Those planes were full of innocent people!"
Ichigo's sorrow and horror suddenly turned to rage, "Who the hell could be responsible for such a horrible attack? What the hell make them think it was okay to kill innocent people?"
Rukia grabbed Ichigo's arm, "Ichigo calm down. Yelling at the TV won't give you answers."
Ichigo's clenched fists turned white he was grabbing so hard, "When I find out who did this I'm gonna..."
"Ichigo..." Rukia said softly. Ichigo finally started to cool down.
"I'm sorry. It's just..."
"You don't need to say it Kurosaki," Toshiro spoke up. "I think we all want to know who's behind this."
"This isn't justified in any way. This is pure, unspeakable evil," Isshin said seriously. Everyone nodded their approval as Yuzu and Orihime began to cry.
They continued to watch for a long time, hoping for some more information on this attack, but what they got was more horror. They witnessed shots of people, jumping out of windows above the crash site and plummeting to their death on the concrete ground below. They saw a man bravely try and climb down but failed as he, too, fell. They witnessed people waving coats, shirts, and other articles of clothing out of the window, hoping in vain to attract the attention of someone who would rescue them. And the horror was just beginning.
Nearly a half an hour later, the new showed that a third plane had crashed straight into the Pentagon at Arlington. The sheer shock that this attack was still continuing sent shockwaves through the group. They couldn't imagine what the American people must be going through. They couldn't imagine something like this happening in Japan. And soon news of a four hijacked plane circulated through the news and how that is had been overtaken by brave passengers and plunged straight into the rural ground of Pennsylvania.
Toshiro bowed his head in respect, "Such brave souls. They must've heard what was happening to other planes and sought to do something about it."
Isshin nodded, "They knew they were going to die anyway, so they decided to avert another tragedy."
"Such brave people," Rukia said as she, too, finally began to feel the effects of terror and sorrow. She leaned close to Ichigo, who instinctively held her tight, but no one made a comment to this. They were too focused on the TV screen as it flipped back to the World Trade Center. They had hoped that the horror was now over, but it was far from it.
Soon, with eyes gazing wide, they saw as the South Tower of the World Trade Center begin to fall. All those people they had seen in the windows of the tower all but vanished in a cloud of ash and debris as the mighty skyscraper came plummeting to the earth. Rukia dug her face into Ichigo's chest as she sobbed long and hard. Karin and Yuzu held eachother and they in turn were hugged by Isshin as he, too, slowly began to cry. Toshiro, Chad, and Uryu bowed their heads in respect to those who had died. Orihime was crying histarically and Rangiku had buried her face into her hands and cried softly. They knew that if one tower fell, the other would go to soon. And they all decided to stay up and watch as the events continued to unfold in the democratic country across the sea.
Everyone in the house that night stayed up until dawn watch as events continued to happen in America. They still went to school the next day but the teachers gave them a break. They had staed up all night watching the events of 9/11. That was the only thing the students talked about the whole day. The girls cried and the boys mearly spoke of how sad they were and how sorry they were toward the American people.
The news had hit the Gotei 13 just as hard. None could believe that such a terrible and horrific act could have been commited by the human race, but now they knew that such an act was very possible and they learned that the hard way. They all hoped to find some way to send their sympathy to the American people, who were still in shock at the attack. Later that day, the Kurosaki family, Rukia, Orihime, Uryu, Chad, Toshiro, and Rangiku gathered around the TV once last time to hear the American president, George W. Bush, address the American people and the world about the attack.
They were moved by the speech but one part stood out beyond all others.
'America and our friends and allies join with all those who want peace and security in the world, and we stand together to win the war against terrorism.'
Ichigo nodded his approval, "I have no doubt we will. I doubt any nation will deny the fact that these men who caused this attack should remain alive."
Toshiro nodded, "I doubt the Soul Society will let this stand either."
Isshin managed to form a smile, "Let us just hope that this 'war on terror' will not last a very long time."
This is dedicated in loving memory of all those who died during the attacks and those whose died in the war in Iraq and Afganistan and all relatives to those who have died. I pray that your loved ones may find peace and that those who haven't returned may return home soon and safely.
And I'm proud to be an American, where at least I know I'm free.
And I won't forget the men who died, who gave that right to me.
And I'll proudly stand up next to you and defend her still today.
For their ain't no doubt I love this land.
God bless the USA!