I've never written anything from 1st POV, so it's somewhat experimental. I'm trying to keep the OOCness under control, but with AU fics it's kind of hard. Thank you xXxMiserableLoveFairyxXx for betareading this for me.
Disclaimer- I don't own Bleach.
Arrogant was the only adjective that used to come to my mind when I used to see Rukia Kuchiki at my university. We didn't know each other, but I had formed an opinion of her like the other students, because she was cold, never smiled or talked to anyone. A student had bumped into her while running; she just simply nodded at the person and just walked away in a graceful gait. To me, it seemed she put herself above others, so I never gave her much thought, until we had a class together the next semester. Like most first impressions, mine of her also started to change during that time. We were both in the same history class, though we were in different departments. I was studying Japanese Literature, while she was in the art department, concentrating on art history. This history class overlapped in both departments, so students from both were present in it, along with normal history majors.
I saw her enter the classroom five minutes before it was to begin in a solid color pale pink dress that blended in with her skin tone looking elegant nonetheless. She always wore dresses that were plain looking, but cut very well and looked expensive and she had that aura of grace surrounding her like she is walking in air. She had short hair that reached just above her shoulders and she was carrying a bag that looked too heavy for her petite body. But she still managed to walk with a straight posture, while keeping a blank look on her face. I noticed that she wore glasses during lectures and took off right after class ended, so I guess it meant that she only wore reading glasses.
That was all I thought about her at the time and decided to pay attention to the lecture. At the end, the professor paired us up to work together to write a report on the topics he had chosen for each group. I was paired with my friend Uryu Ishida and we had been assigned to do an in depth research on the Samurai culture and how it affected the modern Japan. Ishida and I had become friends during the last year of our high school. He was the son of a doctor like me, except his father owned a hospital unlike mine who just owned a clinic. Ishida had a lanky figure and black hair that were parted in the middle. He always wore glasses and one time I asked him why he didn't wear contacts.
"Because I need a look to go with my smart personality; also, I'm allergic to the protein that makes up the lenses."
The alarm clock did go off but I decided to close my eyes just for five more minutes, which unfortunately had turned into 45 minutes. So needless to say, I was running late, very late to my history class. As soon as I got to the door, I saw Rukia also running in from the other direction; we both entered the classroom together.
"Mr. Kurosaki and Ms. Kuchiki, I'm sorry I've already handed out the pop quiz. Since you guys didn't make it in time, you'll not be able to take it." This professor is known for having a stick up his ass and giving pop quizzes the second week of classes.
"So are you saying that we'll receive a 0 for today's quiz?" I asked incredulously.
"Yes, so be on time next time." He answered with a finality that left very little room for discussion. Then I saw the petite girl just standing there with a blank and somewhat disappointing look on her face.
"But, it wasn't really our fault. You see Miss Kuchiki here had to stop on the way to help me since my motorbike had gotten into a minor accident. We got delayed because of that, so please forgive me." This was the best half baked excuse I could come up with, but I knew that since Kuchiki was a model student the professor would believe me if she were involved in whatever lie I made up. I glanced at her and saw her eyes widen a little with surprise and confusion on her face, but thankfully she kept her mouth closed. I was also lucky on the count that the professor didn't confirm my excuse by asking her, I sighed with relief when I heard him say, "Very well, this will be the only time I'll make an exception. So take your seats and here are your quizzes."
Saved, I learned my lesson, and vowed never to sleep in again. I was now excited about meeting my friends, not because I can't survive my life without them but because the girl I had a crush on also hangs out with our group during our break time. Her name was Orihime Inoue and she's in the nursing department. Because of that we never had any classes together, but I met her through mutual friends. She was pretty, popular and smart, she also had some quirks which I found to be cute. Soon, I knew that I had a crush on her. During lecture my thoughts were on how to spend some alone time with Inoue Inoue, I didn't even notice that the class had ended or that Kuchiki was coming towards me.
"Thank you for this morning. Because of you I didn't receive a zero on my quiz." She spoke with sincerity in a deep voice and quiet voice, and then she bowed in to me to show her gratitude. Who does that for something so trivial, especially when I didn't commit the so called act of kindness on her behalf but to save my skin? It did make me feel guilty that she was thanking me genuinely when I actually had used her, though I didn't have the courage to say that to her. So I did the only thing that would be natural in this type of situation, "It's all right, see you around."
I left the classroom to meet my friends, thinking that it must be the first time that she's probably thanked someone; otherwise she's known as an ice princess in general. But she didn't seem that cold, she just seemed to be a little socially awkward.
Ishida, Mizuiro Kojima, Tatsuki and Inoue were waiting at the usual spot outside the cafeteria where there were tables set. But in my eyes only the beautiful school idol Inoue Inoue stood out, with her long auburn hair and her bright smile that improved anyone's bad day. She had such beautiful sun kissed skin that gave her a healthy glow. Her gray doe eyes looked like a cute puppy that I wanted to cuddle right away and her figure was full that made her stand out from any of the girls on campus. I thought I was lucky to know such a beauty, more so to even talk to her.
"Hi Inoue-san, how are you and your classes going?" I asked shyly.
"Hi Kurosaki-kun, I'm fine. I really like all of them; all of my classmates are so nice and friendly. The professors were kind too." She was so excited to talk about school, well her classmates, mostly because they were so nice. I bet most of them were guys and Ican guess the reason why they were nice to her. I had no time to worry about them, because I didn't want to lose my time with her. After all, she hung out in our group mostly ever since she started the university the same time as us, one year ago.
The weather was nice so I didn't complain about my classes; Ishida and I talked a bit about our project which was due in two weeks. We were going to meet at the library and basically live there for the whole weekend with the reference books to keep us company, oh the joy. I looked around and saw Kuchiki enter the cafeteria and come out with some food, it seemed she only paid attention to where she was going and not to her surroundings. She sat on one of the tables far from ours, took out a book and a highlighter. She was eating and doing her homework at the same time, I thought she really needed some friends and a life.
"Erm... Kurosaki-kun how about going to the movies this weekend? All of us of course, you can spare some time from studying, right?" Inoue pulled me out of irrelevant thoughts and before I could answer Ishida answered for me, pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose.
"Sorry, but we won't have time at all, this report is 25% of our grade." He answered in a business like manner that left no room for any negotiation. Inoue looked disconcerted, but it couldn't be helped. Though I was annoyed at Ishida replying to a question meant for me, I soon got over it thinking that I was going to say the same thing anyways and its better that Ishida was the one to disappoint her not me.
"Don't tell me you guys want to be a like that study bug over there? You seriously want to become a lonely, pale, friendless, and on top to count, a socially awkward person like her?" Tatsuki said mockingly while gesturing towards Kuchiki's table. Tatsuki was the tomboy in our group; she had tan skin and short black spiky hair. She'd known Inoue for a long time, so she was her best friend. That is how she started to hang out with us too, though she had a very outspoken personality.
She laughed while going on about how Kuchiki was always with a book and a highlighter or a listening to an mp3, so no one could approach her. Though there were people in school who actually looked up to her because of her impeccable and formal manners that were nostalgic of ideal and traditional Japanese woman, but it wasn't a lot of people.
I was surprised that most people either had formed an indifferent or a mean opinion of her, as if she didn't exist. I kept quietly just ate my food, not wanting to agree or disagree with her.
"All right all right, I'm getting off the train, don't have a heart attack. I'll be there in five minutes." I sighed exasperatedly hanging up on Ishida. That guy would incessantly call the person even if they're one minute late for an appointment.
Ishida had already pulled out the books needed for our paper, he pushed some to me to scan over and make notes.
After three hours of doing nothing but reading, my mind stopped processing the information. I needed a break; I told Ishida I'll be back in 15 minutes after grabbing a snack. He just nodded, while still reading over a book.
I was by the vending machine, I saw Kuchiki on the phone standing some distance away from me. She was on the phone and seemed to be agitated. I only some words of her conversation while there.
"Matsumoto-san, I understand that you caught a cold yesterday, so you can't come out today. I'm finished with my part of the report so, I'll get started on the part you can't do."
That's all I heard, but I didn't have to be Sherlock Holmes to figure out that her partner had ditched her, leaving her with all the school work. And how dumb was Rukia to believe Matsumoto's lies? Matsumoto was known as a party animal all over campus and I'm sure that's what she was doing last night. She was probably just nursing a hangover. Whatever, it's not my problem, neither one of these people are my friends or will affect my grades, so I left to back to worrying over my own report.
I saw her the next day at the library working on the report, alone.
Two weeks later, each group had to present their report. It was the day before, when Matsumoto walked in and went straight to Kuchiki's seat, which is two seats over to my right.
"Did you get my part of the report that I wrote in the email Kuchiki-san?" She said so in a sweet tone with some pride as well, as if to show that she also cares about her school work.
"Yes I did Matsumoto-san, but some of the information was incorrect, so I had to rework it." Rukia replied.
Matsumoto seemed to be miffed that Kuchiki didn't appreciate her contribution on the report; she walked away with only these parting words. "Well I'm sorry that some of us have lives and jobs to devote our whole time to than school, unlike some people who don't either one of these things and are born into rich families."
Kuchiki stayed quiet and just went back to listening to her mp3. At that moment she just looked like an emotionless, ugly, and mechanical being to me.
That comment had to hurt, but she didn't react at all, she didn't even flinch. Why did she keep quiet, does she really think of herself above everyone else? It was horrible to see a person who didn't speak their mind, and acted indifferently to everything like her. I don't know why it was getting to me; I have hardly spoken to her more than once, only at the beginning of the semester. But it seems that she stands out more and more in my field of vision, so my brain naturally processes her presence. I had my own things to worry about, I stopped thinking about this strange girl who has nothing to do with me what so ever.
It was raining hard and we were all done with our classes. Inoue didn't have an umbrella, so I naturally being a gentleman offered her to share mine with her until she got to the station. Naturally, I'd accompany her there, my inside were dancing in ecstasy at the thought of being alone with the girl I had a crush on.
Inoue seemed a little nervous, but I was too preoccupied with mine to notice hers.
"So, how do you like nursing so far? Do you not get disgusted at all?" I really wanted to know why she had picked nursing as her career.
"I like it so far. And it's not disgusting at all Kurosaki-kun, I like taking care of people. I want to see them smile when they are healed, that was the reason I chose it as my career." She said it so confidently and I was impressed. We talked more about our classes, friends and food. We got close to the station and I didn't want to lose anymore time, so seizing my chance I asked Inoue if she was free this Saturday to hang out with me. Lucky for me she was, so I finally had a date, I couldn't have been happier.
As soon as Inoue had boarded her train, I turned and saw Kuchiki, not only me but some other people were also giving her odd looks, since she was dripping wet and with a height like that, it looked as if she were a lost child. I felt bad for her, but I'm sure I saw her purple umbrella in her hands earlier, when she came into the class. She didn't seem to care, she was staring into space with her headphones on, and I glanced at her and made my way towards my apartment.