Disclaimer: I don't own it.

note: the numbers before each scene are their ages.

Maybe OOC. So run while you can.

The Questions Get Harder


Questions are a big part of life in his opinion. The ones you are asked and the ones you have to ask only get harder as you grow older. They are difficult to answer and some that you ask are so damn hard to utter that you might not do it at all.

Lately, Kurosaki Ichigo had found himself with one of those questions buzzing in his head. He hadn't a clue how to phrase the question much less have the courage to even say it. He never once bothered with all the nonsense about dating and girlfriends. However, Kuchiki Rukia, his raven haired, violet eyed, petite chemistry partner was making him rethink that.

He admitted to judging her at first. He thought he had all he needed to know about her just by being her classmate. She was a top student, in the Student Council, former cheerleader, and president of a few clubs… The list goes on.

'Don't judge a book by its cover' would be an excellent phrase to describe Rukia and he felt that one might as well tack 'and by it's Table of Contents' to it as well.

Rukia, with her short height and small body, looked breakable. But Ichigo knew that she could hit, kick, and slap hard and if one got her angry her usually docile and innocent eyes would flash with a fire and intensity he never found in anyone else. Everything he knew about her was a guise. She hated being on Student Council, being a cheerleader, and always being expected to be on top of her grades and schoolwork. She was always happy and polite.

She never felt like she was being herself.

She liked to write. She was an excellent pianist. She lacked in artistic ability. To put it bluntly, her drawings sucked. She was loud and cursed almost as often as he did. She had a temper too. She loved rabbits and read weird horror manga that he never understood. He was surprised to find her reading a romance a few times. She claimed it was for looks. All the girls at school read it, but it was obvious she enjoyed it.

Ichigo, like many of the guys at their high school, had an image of Rukia that was pure perfection and he couldn't be happier that it was shattered. He liked this Rukia much more than the fragile, pushover everyone else saw.

"Ichigo?" He felt the tip of a pencil poke his hand. He hadn't realized he zoned out.

Rukia sat across the table from him. Books and papers were spread before her. She cradled her chin in her palm as she watched him with her worried violet eyes. Her other arm moved back to her side of the table.

"You okay?" she asked softly.

"I just have something on my mind, shorty." He said as he stretched in his seat. He felt her small foot jab at his leg beneath the table.

"Really, Ichigo. You can tell me what's bothering you." She whispered with worry. "I'm getting annoyed with you staring off into the distance with that love struck expression. So, talk."

'Will you be my girlfriend?' and 'do you want to go out with me?' sounded much too childish in his mind. For a second, he thinks it better to not ask her at all. But he had to if he wanted their relationship to go anywhere, he'd have to say something.

Rukia continued to stare at him, now even more confused at his lack of retort about being lovesick.

"Rukia, is your brother home today?"

"My brother?"


"No, he's overseas on business again." She told him."Why?"

"It means you're free to go out with me tonight?" he suggested with a small smile.

Rukia blinked.

"Are you asking me out, Ichigo?" He gulped and ran a hand through his orange hair nervously.

"Well, yea."

She laughed and turned her attention back to her homework.

He'll take that as a 'no'. Ichigo hoped he hadn't screwed up their friendship. He closed his eyes and tried to block everything from his mind. He heard her speak so quietly he almost missed it.

"It took you long enough, idiot."


Ichigo was pretty sure his girlfriend preferred his apartment to her dorm room. Why wouldn't she? According to what she said, her roommate was annoying and had a different guy in there almost every night, the cell phone service sucked, she didn't have cable or Wi-Fi, and her boyfriend was across town 'and surrounded by other women'. Ichigo never pegged Rukia as the jealous type and though he was flattered, he was pretty sure she said it so she'd get her way.

Besides, Rukia should know by now that he'd never cheat on her. He might not tell her, but she had pretty much ruined him for other girls. When they were nineteen, they'd broken up. It lasted about three weeks and during that time a few women has approached him and every single time he compared them to Rukia.

His apartment was big enough for two people and she practically lived there already. It seemed like Rukia had been steadily and stealthily moving herself in for the past two months. She had clothes hanging beside his in his closet, she had a toothbrush, shampoo, conditioner and a number of other personal things, and when he went grocery shopping he found himself buying things she'd like. Even her cat, Shirayuki, lived there.

Because of all this and other things, he didn't see the harm in asking her to move in with him. But how do you ask? Do you randomly start a conversation with 'Hey, you should move in.'? How in hell do you ask that? They'd be living together. If they had a fight, they couldn't walk off to there respective homes and stew until one of them broke the silence.

They would probably share the bedroom. They'd have to. Ichigo wasn't going to banish his girlfriend to the couch. But a shared bedroom meant a shared bed and he doubted he could control himself with her changing and showering in close proximity to him all the time.

That wasn't the reason he wanted her to move in. That part of their relationship had started a few months back and he couldn't be more than happy with it, but that wasn't the point.

Despite his worry on how it would work out, he really liked the idea of her always being there. He could wake up to her curled beside him in the morning, they could make breakfast in the mornings together, she could take care of her own damn cat… For Kuchiki Rukia to be around all the time whether she was kissing him or slapping him would be heaven. A kind of masochistic one, but heaven nonetheless.

She laid at the edge of his bed, talking to the small, white bundle of fur.

"You're such a pretty cat, Shira-chan."

Ichigo stared at her form. The blanket fell over her. She no longer had the body of a twelve year old. He presumed she was a late bloomer. Other the years, she'd grown into the woman she acted like. Her body curved and dipped in all the right areas, she'd grown taller and she had chopped her midnight locks into short bob.

Rukia had grown to become twice as beautiful as she had been before. Not only in looks but in personality. She was more herself now and chose to do what she wanted and not what was expected of her.

"Hey, Ichigo." She whispered. Ichigo thought she'd turn around, but she kept her smooth back to him. "One of guys tried to hit on me last night. The ones my roommate always bring in?"

Ichigo's eyes widened and he gripped the sheets of the bed in anger.

"They didn't do anything to you, right? You'd tell me." He ground out. She wouldn't keep anything like that secret right?

She turned around and slid closer to him. She clutched the blanket to her chest and locked eyes with him. Her eyes looked sad and maybe even ashamed. This was her way of saying she was afraid.

"I thought they might try something so I came home. I mean here. Sorry."

Ichigo touched his lips to her forehead and to her nose before gently pressing them to her own. She smiled and pushed against his mouth. Her hand left the blanket and came to grab onto his orange spikes. She deepened the kiss further and Ichigo nipped at her lip lightly, causing Rukia to pull back, panting lightly and with a blush on her face.

He placed his forehead to hers, his eyes meeting hers.

"Did I ever tell you how much I love your eyes?" she blurted out. Ichigo chuckled and Rukia's blush worsened.

"Not that I remember." He said as he pulled her to him. Rukia buried her head in the crook of his neck and inhaled deeply.

"They're one of my favorite things about you." She mumbled. He felt her eyelashes graze across his skin as she closed her eyes. "They're orange and brown and gold and a whole plethora of shades of those." Her warm breath came across his skin in a huff and Ichigo tightened his arms around her.

"You're getting sappy on me, Rukia." He teased.

"Deal with it." She growled and she bit the skin of his neck.


Rukia chuckled. Ichigo assumed it was now or never.

"Rukia? When you wake up, go back to the university and tell them you're moving from the dorms okay?" Ichigo closed his eyes and held his girlfriend tighter.

"Moving? Where in hell am I moving?"

"Where else? Practically all your crap is here."

"Seriously?" she asked and pulled back from him. He kept his eyes closed and simply nodded. Rukia grinned and returned her head to his neck before drifting off to sleep.


"Did you lay there all week?" Ichigo asked her.

Rukia was sprawled on their black couch, wearing on old basketball jersey of his and pair of his boxers. Two furry bundles, one black and one white, were curled at her side.

"And don't you have your own clothes?" he complained as he walked around to the front of the couch. Rukia lifted her legs for him to sit before placing her feet in his lap.

Rukia smiled at him.

"Hello to you to, Ichigo. And no I didn't. I got up to make tea earlier and I like wearing your clothes. They're comfortable."

She mainly wore them when he was gone. He figured it helped her feel secure when she was alone.

"How'd the conference go Mister med-student?" she asked. She proceeded to rub his stomach with her foot.

The conference had been interesting enough, but the only thing he could think about during it was Rukia and stupid questions...

"It was alright. Did you get any writing done?"

Ichigo placed his hand in his pocket and traced the velvet box with his fingers. He really hated the questions life made people ask.

"Yea. Zangetsu missed you. He would walk to the door and meow like he was calling for you."

"Doubt it. That cat's a little bastard."

"Just like the man who raised him." Ichigo frowned and Rukia laughed while sitting up and moved to straddle his lap. She wrapped her arms around his neck and laid her head on his shoulder.

"I missed you." She whispered in his ear. He hugged her tightly and kissed her hair, breathing in the vanilla scent of her shampoo. He doubted he would be able to find a better moment. To hell with being sappy and getting down on one knee.

"I have something to ask you." He said into her black tresses.

"Ask away." She stated and she began to place small kisses on his neck.

Ichigo closed his eyes and tried to focus. One of Rukia's many talents was her ability to pretty much turn him limp and unresponsive when she kissed his neck.

"Rukia, I'm trying to talk." He growled out halfheartedly. He hadn't seen her for a week and he missed the feel of her lips on his skin. Rukia began to unbutton his shirt and she scratched her teeth across his Adam's apple.

This woman…

Ichigo grabbed her small shoulders before pushing her back.

"Ichigo?" He could hear the hurt in her voice and see it in her beautiful eyes.

"We can do that later. I have something to ask you." He smiled at her and kissed her lips softly.

"Then ask it." She demanded with a pout.

"Close your eyes." Rukia, for once, did as she was told and closed her purple orbs. She huffed in frustration. Ichigo reached into the pocket of his jeans and pulled out the small velvet box. He couldn't think of any other way to do it. He wanted to make it a grand gesture. He wanted it to be romantic and memorable, but his mind could think a single thing up.

He grabbed her small pale hands in his large tan ones and slipped the box into her palm. A curious look crossed Rukia's face and she quickly opened her eyes, bringing the item in her hands up to them.

Rukia looked from the box in her hands to Ichigo and back again.

"It's a box." She stated. "I thought you had a question, not a box."

"Well, you kinda have to open it." he said sarcastically. Rukia shot him a glare.

Her small fingers lifted the lid and her eyes caught a shimmer. The band was silver and in the middle of it sat a single, small diamond.

"I figured you wouldn't want something fancy. Simple is more your thing." He explained. "I wanted to do something special, but I couldn't think of anything…" He trailed off and was about to speak again when Rukia's lips silenced him.

She pulled back, wrapped her arms around his neck, and stared him in the eye.

"All I care about is the question. You could've proposed in the morgue for all I care."

"That's a little morbid." He sighed. Rukia smacked him lightly on his head and she smiled.

"So where is my question?" she asked and she grinned wider.

"I already know your answer."

"Do you really?"

"Fine." He cleared his throat and took a deep breath. "Marry me, Rukia."

"That's not a question." She pointed out.

"Then you can't say no." Ichigo pushed her down on the couch; the cats sprung from their sleep and ran off. He stared down at the woman beneath him and kissed her neck. He heard her sigh and whisper,

"I'll think about it."



Yea I needed to get this out of my brain. It's not very detailed and it isn't really fluffy or anything. It's just really simple. I'm happy with it and now I can focus on my other stories.

Probably sappy and OOC but oh well! It's gone from my mind and I can FOCUS!

I feel I'm being a little more adventurous with kissing scenes, maybe because I'm gearing up for a lemon? *is freaked by the fact that imma write one*

REVIEW! It might just be ficlet kinda thing but it wants reviews! XD