Prologue: The Captain of Squad 5
"Did you hear? They say that substitute Shinigami Ichigo Kurosaki defeated Aizen, can you believe that?" A Shinigami asked another as throughout the streets of the Seireitei many were celebrating the end of the Winter War.
"I know, who would have thought that the ryoka from last year would be able to do something that even Captain Yamamoto couldn't do?" Another Shinigami asked as yet another Shinigami came running up.
"Hey did you hear? Captain Yamamoto has found a captain for Squad Three!" The Shinigami exclaimed.
"Who is it?" The first Shinigami asked.
"You mean it's not Kira?" The second Shinigami asked.
"Well actually it is." The third Shinigami added as the three burst out into a fit of laughter.
"Well I hope they find replacements for the other squads soon enough too. Come to think of it, why not ask Hisagi to apply for captaincy?" The first Shinigami asked.
"Great idea, but who should we ask to take Aizen's place?" The second Shinigami asked.
"Well Hinamori is the lieutenant." The first Shinigami retorted.
"Are you joking? Everyone thinks that girl's a nut job, if she became captain for Squad Five, we would only have another Aizen on our hands!" The third Shinigami exclaimed prompting the other's to burst into laughter yet again.
From a distance Momo Hinamori had been observing the Shinigami as they discussed the matter, and deep inside she could feel her heart breaking. "Why can't anyone see that Aizen was only controlled by Gin?" She wondered as a few tears trickled from her eyes.
"You shouldn't listen to them Momo." Rangiku stated from behind the upset Shinigami. "Besides they can talk all they want, I know you're not crazy, and like a few unseated officers have any say in who becomes captain of any squad. Don't let them get to you. Now let's go, the old man wanted to see all captains and lieutenants for a special announcement, if we don't hurry we'll get in trouble." She stated before running off, but as she passed the three unseated Shinigami she unleashed a wave of reiatsu that caused the three to collapse to the ground.
The sight of the three Shinigami from before getting forced to the ground brought a smile to Momo's face. "Right I don't need to listen to them! Rangiku's right, and maybe I could be captain of my squad!" Momo thought as she ran past the downed Shinigami as she shot them a glare.
At the meeting Yamamoto wasted no time in getting to business. "I have called you all here to address the status of Squad Nine, as of tomorrow the captain will be Renji Abarai while Shuhei Hisagi will remain as lieutenant." Yamamoto called forth to the captains and lieutenants.
"Excuse me Captain Yamamoto sir?" Momo spoke up.
"What is it?" Yamamoto asked.
"Well I was wondering… If you haven't found a captain for my squad yet, I'd like to request that I be made captain." Momo replied timidly.
"No, I can not approve such a request. Momo Hinamori you are not fit to command a squad at this time, so you will continue to carry out your duties as I assign them to you. That is all you are dismissed." Yamamoto stated.
"No… It can't be." Momo thought in horror. "This isn't fair!" Momo shouted at Yamamoto. "You allowed for Kira to succeed Gin, so why can't I be captain for my squad?" She shouted.
"Silence!" Yamamoto shouted back. "It is because you act on impulse fueled by your emotions that you are unfit to be a captain. A captain must be of sound mind lest they bring their squad into ruin. You are still enthralled in the belief that Gin Ichimaru was controlling Aizen. Your personal feelings have clouded your judgment and as such you are unworthy of being a captain. Now you are dismissed." He finished as Momo broke down into sobs.
It had been four years since the Winter War against the traitorous captains had been won. Since then, the Soul Society had fended off an invasion of Quincies, though there were many changes. The most notable change was that central forty-six was disbanded leaving all major decisions concerning Soul Society to Captain Yamamoto. Another notable change was that in the war against the Quincies, a few Shinigami began to learn some of the abilities that the Quincies utilized, such as the ability to use reishi to control otherwise paralyzed appendages. Yet another notable change was a stage of release beyond bankai, sanban kaihou involved the materialization of the zanpakuto spirit to fight alongside the Shinigami it was partnered with, the first Shinigami to achieve this was Byakuya Kuchiki, he discovered the third release the day his sister achieved her bankai. While many things in Soul Society had changed, there was still no captain for Squad Five, but that too was about to change.
It was late in the year as once again Momo went to see Yamamoto to try and convince him that she was fit to be captain. "As you can see I have achieved bankai, I am also calmer than I was back then, and I no longer harbor any delusions as to the events surrounding the Winter War… Have I met the necessary qualifications yet?" Momo asked as Yamamoto read a file on her.
"While I agree you have made considerable growth I'm afraid I can not give you a position that has already been filled." Yamamoto replied and Momo's eyes widened.
"What did you say?" Momo asked weakly.
"The former third seat of Squad Six has requested a transfer to Squad Five to become a captain. He had the recommendation of numerous captains, and his psychiatric evaluation as well as his physical abilities make him a suitable candidate for captaincy of Squad Five. The meeting this afternoon was to induct him into his position as your new captain. If you are unsatisfied you can always challenge him for his position, you are fit to lead after all." Yamamoto explained.
"Who is it? I'm not familiar with the members of Squad Six other than Captain Kuchiki and that bastard Lieutenant Kurosaki." Momo replied causing Yamamoto to narrow his eyes on her.
"So she does not look to Ichigo Kurosaki with much esteem… I will need to keep that in mind." Yamamoto thought. "The former third seat was a prodigy named Ryu Aizawa. He will be your new captain starting tomorrow. If you could remain here though the meeting in which he's inducted will commence in fifteen minutes." He explained before Byakuya and Ichigo entered the room.
"See I told you we'd be early." Ichigo stated after noticing only Momo was present. After thwarting the invasion of the Quincies, Squad Six was repurposed to dealing with affairs pertaining to the world of the living making it acceptable for a substitute Shinigami to become a lieutenant. Though old habits die hard as usually the two never saw eye to eye on certain matters.
"Ichigo Kurosaki, it is better to be on time rather than late, for a Kuchiki being on time is being late." Byakuya replied.
"Tell me you're joking." Ichigo replied.
"Ichigo have I not told you that it is unacceptable to give orders to a superior officer?" Byakuya asked.
"Tch, fine, forgive my insolence Captain Kuchiki." Ichigo replied, though in the perspective of Momo it almost seemed like Ichigo was saying "fine whatever you say bastard".
"All is forgiven, it took Renji several years to understand that lesson and in many ways he never quite grasped the concept. I am pleased that you show a much higher level of comprehension on this matter." Byakuya replied without so much as opening his eyes.
"Ugh… Great she's here." Ichigo thought upon noticing Momo glaring at him. "Bya- I mean Captain, wouldn't you agree that someone should tell Momo that her blunt resentment toward me only strengthens the belief that she is pissed that I defeated Aizen?" He asked.
"Lieutenant Hinamori, may I have a word with you?" Byakuya asked, and Momo reluctantly walked over to Byakuya.
"Yes Captain Kuchiki?" Momo asked as she glared daggers at Ichigo.
"Your blunt resentment of my lieutenant further reinforces the belief many hold that you are disgruntled with my lieutenant for his role in the Winter War. If you are infuriated with him solely out of the fact that he defeated Aizen then your infuriation is misguided, that which you should be angry towards isn't Ichigo Kurosaki, but Aizen for forcing us to act, Ichigo being the only one at the time who could stop him. It wasn't a personal vendetta against Aizen that drove my lieutenant to fight, but rather a sense of duty to defend the allies he has in the world of the living. That is all." Byakuya explained in a hushed tone so that Yamamoto wouldn't hear, but Momo was infuriated by what he had said.
"How dare you! That is not the reason why I hate the bastard! I hate him because his mere existence as a substitute Shinigami insults us real Shinigami! I hate him and whoever helped him to become a substitute in the first place!" Momo shouted, which was a lie, true she hated Ichigo, but she couldn't express with words why she hated him.
"Lieutenant Hinamori allow me to-" Byakuya began to respond but Ichigo cut him off.
"Look hate and insult me all you want, but Rukia gave me the strength I needed to protect my family and friends. Of course my captain severed my soul chain shortly after the fact, after that Kisuke Urahara helped me to get my powers back, and after rescuing Rukia from the Sokyoku Captain Yamamoto had Captain Ukitake issue me the representative badge. They all helped me to grow strong enough to protect everyone, and you have no right to insult them!" Ichigo shouted and Momo took a step back.
"I don't have to take this from a nothing like you!" Momo shouted as she drew Tobiume from it's sheath. "I'm not afraid of you and I downright refuse to be talked down to by a substitute like you! Real Shinigami will always be superior, now snap! Tobiume!" She shouted and in seconds the blade of her zanpakuto changed shape.
"Tch, you want a fight? Fine!" Ichigo replied as he grabbed Zangetsu from his back.
"Bakudo number one, sai!" Byakuya shouted before Ichigo's arms were restrained behind his back, but oddly enough to the two members of Squad Six and Yamamoto as well, the same thing happened simultaneously to Momo.
"Ugh, what happened?" Momo asked as she looked around before resting her eyes on a fifth Shinigami to enter the room.
"Come on you two you're comrades you shouldn't be fighting." The fifth Shinigami stated as he rubbed the back of his head. The Shinigami had burning red hair and brilliant blue eyes. His shihakusho was unusual though, his right sleeve ran down to his wrist, but the left sleeve was pretty much nonexistent, the shitagi was also red when normally it would have been white.
"Hey Ryu what are you doing here?" Ichigo asked upon noticing the man.
"Ichigo, Ryu Aizawa is no longer our third seat. Ryu has been recommended to assume the role of captain for Squad Five." Byakuya explained.
"So you're my new captain?" Momo asked with a hint of fury in her eyes.
"Uh, yeah I guess so… Hey is this meeting going to start soon? I forgot my candy back at the Squad Six barracks, and I could really go for something sweet." Ryu stated nonchalantly.
"He really is just like Yachiru…" Ichigo thought as the two captains released the binding seals.
"Captain Yamamoto why does some kid have to be my new captain?" Momo protested.
"Ryu Aizawa has been recommended for the position by several captains, and he meets all of the requirements to become a captain as detailed by the captain's proficiency test." Yamamoto explained.
"Wait so he fulfilled two of the ways to become captain?" Ichigo asked.
"That is correct." Byakuya stated.
"Well I challenge you for captaincy Ryu Aizawa!" Momo shouted as she pointed at the young Shinigami who in turn gave a heavy sigh.
Three hours later at the Squad Five training grounds Momo was preparing to face off against Ryu. "Are you sure you really want to do this?" Ryu asked as he drew his zanpakuto with his left hand.
"Oh I'm completely sure, Ryu in a few minutes I'll be the next captain for Squad Five!" Momo shouted as a crowd of about two hundred squad members watched in heavy anticipation.
"This is barbaric…" Byakuya thought as everyone waited for the match to begin.
"Alright let's get things started!" Momo exclaimed as she bolted in for an upward slash from the right that Ryu effortlessly blocked.
"So do you think Momo can win?" Ichigo asked as they watched Momo swing wildly at Ryu.
"Who knows?" Byakuya replied as Ryu blocked yet another attack.
"Damn you! I'm not finished yet! Snap! Tobiume!" Momo shouted and once again her zanpakuto sprouted three prongs on the blade. "Now you die!" She shouted as she hurled several fireballs at Ryu.
"Wait her Tobiume is a fire type?" Ichigo asked in exasperation. "Should we end the match? Momo doesn't have a chance in hell of beating Ryu with a fire type zanpakuto." He continued as he watched Ryu dodge the fireballs.
"No this is a lesson that Lieutenant Hinamori must learn for herself." Byakuya explained.
"Tch, all he's done is block or dodge my attacks. Well not anymore…" Momo thought as she strengthened her reiatsu. "Bankai!" She shouted and a second later an explosion engulfed her body, and once the smoke cleared she was seen with a tall staff that had a large ring at the top. "Asahi, Tobiume!" She shouted and every Squad Five member roared in approval of her bankai.
"Bankai? And here I thought we wouldn't have to go that far. Oh man this sucks." Ryu stated as the ring on Tobiume caught fire.
"Here I thought she'd use it on me first." Ichigo blurted out.
"Get ready to die! Taiyoko Imochi!" Momo shouted as she swung the staff around creating a much larger fireball than before.
"That thing… If it explodes everyone here is done for!" Ryu thought as he looked on at the incoming monster of a fireball. "I have no choice… Rise from the ashes, Akai Fenikkusu!" He shouted and his zanpakuto became enveloped in flames that began to take the form of a bird. "Chokyoshi O Kaiko!" He shouted and the phoenix rising from his blade absorbed the fireball completely. "Good I was hoping that would work." He uttered, but Momo became enraged.
"How could he stop it with just one move while in shikai? That doesn't make sense!" Momo shouted as she got ready to swing her staff around again.
"Moetsukiru!" Ryu shouted once more and the phoenix began to flap it's wings giving off several fireballs that exploded upon hitting the ground. After the smoke cleared Momo was lying on the ground as her shihakusho smoldered slightly. "This battle's over, now being that your zanpakuto is also a fire type, you shouldn't be too badly burnt, but keep in mind if you keep fighting you will be incinerated so please just give up." He pleaded as he resealed his zanpakuto before sheathing it.
"Ugh, this battle is over when I become captain." Momo grunted as she struggled to climb to her feet.
"Lieutenant Hinamori that is enough." Byakuya stated after appearing in front of Momo.
"No I haven't beaten him yet!" Momo shouted as she glared up at Byakuya who returned the glare with his own.
"The way you are now… You could never hope to defeat Ryu Aizawa, or did you not notice that he has bested your bankai with only his shikai? Impressive as your efforts were you still haven't mastered your bankai, do you really believe you can master being a captain?" Byakuya asked and Momo's gaze fell to the ground as she clenched her teeth.
"Fine, Ryu Aizawa you may wear the coat but you will never be the captain of Squad Five!" Momo shouted as she pointed at Ryu.
"I though only captains wore those coats, so how can I wear it and not be captain?" Ryu asked as he tried with no success to wrap his mind around what Momo said.
"Just give it up Ryu, or should I call you Captain Aizawa?" Ichigo stated.
"Ryu's fine thanks… Um Ichigo did you remember to bring my candy?" Ryu asked as his face pinked a little.
"Uh, there was no candy in your room." Ichigo replied. "So no I didn't bring your candy." He added.
"But you were supposed to check my room and find that there was none, then you were supposed to get scared by thinking "maybe the new captain will think I ate his candy" and then you were supposed to by me some." Ryu explained.
"Please tell me you're joking." Ichigo replied, but Ryu simply smiled up at him. "Well I guess I could get some as a way of saying congrats on becoming a captain, but come to think of it, you know how Squad Five's members are, they hate when someone comes in from another squad to take charge, so why Squad Five? You could have taken our Kira or Renji, and you may have even been able to give Byakuya a run for his money as well." He explained.
"Yeah, but Squad Five has something no other Squad has." Ryu replied and Ichigo gave him a puzzled look. "Squad Five has the most amazing Shinigami as the lieutenant!" He replied excitedly but quietly so no one could hear, but Ichigo simply gave him a blank stare.
"What in the world could possess you to like her?" Ichigo asked.
"Because she's cute, she's smart, a genius at kido, and she has a fire type zanpakuto as well." Ryu explained, but Ichigo didn't have the heart to tell him the truth, that after showing her how much weaker she was than him, she would probably never warm up.
Prologue end - Yet a new fanfic, this one is dedicated to a friend on here named alienvspredator5 and he/she came up with the idea for Ryu, after that we brainstormed on a basic storyline which will begin with chapter one, anyway R&R.
(Shunpo back to the laptop for the second fic)
Disclaimer: I do not own bleach, because I'm American and not Tite Kubo.
Partial Disclaimer: I do not own the OC Ryu, but I did give him the last name Aizawa, as for the prologue credit goes to alienvspredator5 for the situation of Ryu becoming captain of squad five and liking momo, and Ryu's zanpakuto, though the release command and two attacks as well as momo's bankai were my ideas, other than that the storyline was my part, but starting on chapter one, half of the storyline can be accredited to alienvspredator5. Please read on when I upload more, and reviews are always welcome.