Challenged Crystal-Amethyst to a one-month 6k deadline craze! I am so so so so incredibly late because my life has decided to upchuck itself on my face. This is my part: AiTarou with the themes of a helping Gin, Aizen falling in love, and the Shinigami magazine. (BTW, stretched it with the magazine, sorry…) This ended up being AU, but I think it's pretty good anyway. Needless to say, this is going to take quite a bit of effort. The second half will be up GOD-KNOWS-WHEN. Happy belated birthday, Hana-tan! April 1st! :D By the by, I totally ship this pairing now. AiTarou UNF! OTP HNGGG
Please enjoy. I don't own Bleach, but I do love me some HyourinHitsu ;D *winkwinknudgenudge*
By the way, if there are any typos, please tell me.
"I'm gettin' sick of ya bein' sick, Sousuke," Gin sneered, his smile only faltering for a second as he steered harshly around a corner and pressed on the gas. A compact on his left honked squeakily at his sudden sharp turn, and Gin rolled down the window to bark, "Asshole!"
"I am not sick, Gin," the brown-haired man in the passenger seat wrapped a hand firmly around the plastic handle above the door, and the other had a death-grip on the center console.
"Yeah ya are- Turn up the music, will ya?" Without breaking his expression, the silver-haired man swerved around another car, hearing the horn blare at him before straightening the small car. He was going at least seven miles over the speed limit, and it was starting to bother Aizen. As quickly as he could, he shot his hand up to twist the volume up until Gin bopped his head up and down to the beat of the music and muttered a quick thanks. The loud music, filled with strange screams and guitar riffs, wasn't helping the splitting migraine wreaking havoc in the brunet's head. He didn't let it show, but he was starting to feel seriously under the weather by the time the car parked in the lot of the local clinic.
When he first met Gin, Aizen knew their relationship would be an odd one. He was seemingly unaffected by the charisma and allure that rolled off of the brunet. After seeing him time after time, it was only natural that he would try just a little bit harder to get the squinty man to worship him the way everyone else seemed to. But his efforts only helped kindle the jokes and strange reactions he got instead. It didn't take very long to realize they would become real friends. Not fake friends; the kind Aizen had to remind himself to call once in a while and absorb the newest information from. Real friends, the kind that shared a common goal and similar interests. The only other man to do this was Tousen Kaname, who was currently in Germany.
But Aizen never had to remind himself to study the ditzy man; it was becoming a habit to record all possible reactions of the hyper fox. This kept him constantly entertained, and such was the reason he allowed Gin to live with Kaname in the second uppermost level of his apartment complex. Also the reason he carpooled with him, and the reason they would hang out, and the reason he had seemed to actually become quite close with Gin.
"Ya look like shit." With the infamous mocking beam, Gin slithered out of the car and slammed the door extra-loudly, leaving Aizen in the smelly vehicle as he wandered towards the faded pink building. Lifting his hand to feel his forehead one more time, the tall man wheezed out a sigh before stepping out of the car as well. His friend was way ahead of him, waving and whistling at nurses who bustled in and out of the building. Some blushed, others ignored him, and only a few raised an angry fist before rushing off in their peach uniforms.
As soon as he entered, the smell of sick people and too much cleaning solution invaded Aizen's nostrils, and he sniffed and looked down to avoid showing too much dislike. Gin leaned much farther over the edge of the desk than he probably needed to, peeking at the abandoned computer screen before the woman behind the counter turned and waved him away. Still with an air of elegance, the brown-haired man sauntered up to his friend's side and greeted the nurse with a small smile and tilt of the head.
She blushed before lowering her eyes and flipping through a clipboard. The bashful girl placed it on the counter in front of Gin, followed by a shaking hand that dropped the pen onto the paper. The silver-haired man was still grinning like a creep, and he raised a thin eye brow when she managed to stutter out that she needed his name and phone number for check-in.
"Oh? See, Sousuke, even when ya look like ya got nailed in the family jewels an' thrown outta an aeroplane, the babes still crawl around for yer number," he said slyly, causing the nurse to go bright red before she looked between the two of them and swiveled her chair to face away. Dropping the façade, Aizen coldly stared at Gin before snatching the pen up with an equal amount of eloquence as his retort:
"What was your new apartment number again? I have eviction forms lying around somewhere in my car."
But the wicked smile didn't fall, and the man donning it let his head fall backwards to look up at the white ceiling.
"'ve always hated these damn hospitals," he mumbled, pulling a hand up to shield his eyes from the bright lights. Before Aizen had the time to wonder why Gin would have to cover his eyes if they were already closed, he saw a hint of blue appear in the corner of the room. Instinctively, he ignored it for a few seconds in order to keep the sophistication he was known for. It was when he finished writing his phone number that he turned slickly and let his eyes wander, curious to find the hint of azure in this over-sterilized sea of pink.
But he didn't catch it the first time around, so he hooded his eyes and slid a hand through his hair before an ugly cough fought its way out of his chest and into his elbow. It stabbed at the pit of his diaphragm before he muffled it and opened an eye to search for a water fountain.
"Oi, 's one down the hall," Gin gestured with his shoulder lazily, and the nurse he had effectively embarrassed turned to say a doctor could see him in a few minutes. Aizen nodded, sweeping down the long, rosy hallway until he saw the glimmer of a stainless steel drinking fountain next to a potted plant. He managed to walk at just the right pace to reach the metallic oasis and quench his thirst before he began to cough again, splashing water around in the metal basin a bit before he pulled away and wiped his mouth. With a few broken breaths, he calmed himself and turned away, resting his back against the wall and lowering his head. His hawk-eyes darted around in brown energy, still on the hunt for the blue nurse's uniform he had seen before.
There was no one around, however, so he made his way back to the main area of the lobby. Gin was now seated on the partially-comfortable chairs next to the vending machine, poking away at his cell phone and raising his eyebrows whenever it beeped at him. The occasional giggle would erupt from the wicked smile plastered on his white face, and he would type back a reply within seconds and send it.
Aizen stood and watched, hands in pockets, as Gin bent over to stare at the tiny screen. He was focusing his squinty gaze on the device, poised and ready to reply at any moment.
"What are you doing?" Although the question came out of nowhere, it didn't startle his friend, who still stooped over his cell in wait. He didn't even look up as he replied, "Waitin' fer a text."
"From whom?" Aizen asked, feeling a little more curious today than he was normally. Maybe it was because of that random and intriguing bit of blue he saw. He didn't know there were male nurses here; he wanted to at least get a face to put in his database of a brain. The man wasn't desperate for information; he just wouldn't deny himself more intelligence.
"Frien' said he's gon' get me a lifeguard job at a pool," his friend looked up, just as a tall woman entered the room, white coat flapping behind her. He finished with a quiet, "I'll wait fer ya."
"We're ready for you… please follow me," the silver-haired woman said, and Aizen couldn't help but notice how tall she really was. Their eyes were at the same level, and he looked directly at her before nodding politely and offering a sweet smile.
"Of course, doctor."
He was led down a long hallway, and the smell of medication increased with each footstep. The doctor looked back every few moments to ensure he hadn't lost his breath or his way, already beginning her initial examination with her dark grey eyes. They passed many rooms, revealing the clinic was in fact pretty busy with various diseases and injuries. But in each of them, Aizen only saw a female nurse clad in the pasty pink outfit that seemed to be everywhere.
He knew he wasn't mistaken; what he had seen earlier was the same baby-blue shade of fabric as what male nurses wore. The curiosity of seeing this rare male nurse was doing more than biting at him now. He honestly wanted to learn more about him. To see how he worked in this female-filled environment, and to see what kind of personality he had. Aizen needed another person to entertain himself with.
He shook his head, convincing himself he was delirious from the illness he had tried so hard to hide from one of his only friends. He didn't need anyone. He simply required a new source of amusement. Soon, Gin would have a job, and Kaname was already out so often with his international gambling, Aizen would be bored. Maybe this oddball of a medical assistant could prove to keep him satisfied until either Gin got fired or Kaname grounded himself.
But it would have to wait, he noted quickly, when the tall doctor stopped and waved them both into a room.
"Please sit here and I'll go pull your records, Mister," she had a gentle look on her face, sliding her dark eyes down to read his name from the sign-in, "Aizen." She disappeared, pulling the door shut behind her until it clicked heavily. The last thing he saw was her tiny braids trailing away from the silver mop.
The man slid back onto his elbows, feeling his head tilt back until he eyed the white ceiling panels. The glaring lights shot bullets into his pounding head.
He shut his eyes, letting out a long breath before thinking again about the odd bit of blue. As he sniffed, he sat up to look around for tissues. There was a box sitting next to the small sink in the check-up room, and he hopped from his seat to fish some white napkins from it to blow his nose. He held them up to his hot face, ready to rid his head of the irritating mucus, when there was a short, sharp knock on the door. Aizen turned to look at the handle, which jiggled before the door cracked a bit.
"H-hello," the tiny voice said, and it was obviously male, however soft it was. "I'm your nurse today, I'm here to drop off your-"
The short boy entered the room, a thin arm still holding the door open. His sad, blue eyes looked up from where they burrowed into the floor, locking with the hypnotic brown orbs that were waiting for him. Aizen didn't blink, looking silently into the scared eyes below him as he lowered his hands and tossed the almost-used tissue into the trash bin. He glided over to the side of the bed, sliding back on and resting on his hands. The boy didn't follow his movements, instead zoning out on the spot where his head once was.
"Hello," Aizen said, allowing charm to fester in his rich voice. "You're my nurse today, and you're here to drop off my…"
"D-drop off your medication!" That seemed to break his phase, and the short nurse wrung a hand in the bottom of his blue shirt, "Doctor Kotetsu forgot she already had your papers… b-but she was called away on an emergency." His voice was getting extremely quiet, making Aizen lean towards the boy in an effort to hear the last few words.
"I see," he said, still reclined on the clean paper sheet covering cheap plastic. "Thank you…" He lifted an eyebrow, trying to coax a name from the new blip on his radar. The boy brought a thin, pale hand up to tuck part of his straight black hair behind his ear, before biting the inside of his cheek. A thin hand floated to gesture over his chest.
"Yamada Hanatarou," he said softly, twisting part of his medical belt down to pull a notepad out quickly. "Wh-what kanji do you use for your family name?" Aizen didn't miss a beat; he stood to look at the notepad as Hanatarou's hand started to shake. He was the weak type, obviously, and wasn't comfortable around strangers. Especially strangers like Aizen Sousuke; the dangerously charismatic type. But that was the type of person Aizen needed right now.
"It is written on my papers, Yamada," he prompted, reaching a long arm forth to tug a white page over until his records were shown, with his name typed at the top. "See?"
"R-right!" He could see the short boy twitch his eyebrow in frustration. But the emotions he expected to see flourish in the blue eyes were absent. Aizen returned to his perch on the bed once more, still staring deeply into the eyes that interested him even more now. The blank sadness was still present, although the rest of Hanatarou's body showed different feelings.
His emotions were all over the place, and unlike other people, he managed to keep them entirely to himself. This boy was weak, yes, but he wasn't going to let it get in his way.
Aizen almost smiled as Hanatarou continued to ramble about medication amounts and such.
"Yes, I understand," he said, matching the rhythm of the shivering nurse perfectly as soon as he finished listing side effects. "Thank you, again."
"Just doing my job," the boy muttered, before returning the thin notepad to his belt. He nodded, opening the door and motioning for the taller man to leave first. Instead of verbal thanks, Aizen mustered a sensual smile and turn of the body to sashay out of the doorway and into the hall.
"That was rather quick, don't you agree?"
"We've had a-a lot of cases with the exact same symptoms that you seem to show," Hanatarou said, drifting behind the man who was now twisting around to look at him. He kept the papers close to his chest, not daring to meet the intimidating gaze. "To save time, y-you don't mind if we give you the same me-medication as the others?"
"Of course not," he had his hands casually sheathed in his pockets, letting his light steps echo in the halls. "Whatever heals me up, I will take."
"Well…" Hanatarou was careful with his words as they made it out to the lobby and he approached the counter. "If th-there are any major side effects, stop taking it and come back to see the d-doctor again." His soft voice got the attention of the nurse behind the counter, who looked up and smiled when she saw the nervous boy.
"Hana-tan! Have you finished with… Aizen-sama's checkup?" Her eyes peered up at the taller man sweetly, and her voice dropped an octave on his name. Aizen smiled, but his focus was still on the short boy. His hand moved quickly to sign his name at the bottom of the file quickly, and he paused only for a moment. Hanatarou tilted his head, looking from the corner of his eye at the brown-haired man who was soaking him up, startled slightly by the intense attention.
"Yes, I have. He's free to go."
Was that an indirect attempt at asking him to leave him alone? Aizen sure hoped it wasn't; the boy's reactions were delicious.
"Oi! Aizen, baby!" Gin waved him over from his lounging position on one of the hard plastic chairs, "We gotta go! I gotta text from my girl, askin' ta pick her up in ten!"
"And how is that my problem?" he asked, slightly annoyed that he had to look at the squinty man who had stood quickly, phone and keys in one hand and magazine in the other. Rubbing the back of his silver head, Gin tsked and bopped Aizen on the shoulder with the rolled up reading material before turning on his heel. He sashayed quickly away, swinging the magazine back and forth like a pendulum.
"Well, las' time I didn't pick 'er up, she came ta my door cryin' an' angry an' shit. Remember? That night ya couldn't get any sleep, even from the top floor, 'cause all night ya could hear us fu-"
"You are still with this woman?" Aizen tried to salvage the conversation, certain it wasn't too late to spare Hanatarou the extra information. But the blue eyes were slightly bugged out, looking between the two men before turning back to his paper with a pink face. Gin continued, huffing and heading towards the door. The magazine in his grip was flipped through impatiently, stopping awkwardly on a single page. Squinty eyes darted up, eyeing the brunet before his hands shuffled with the magazine again, shoving it under his arm.
"Hell yeah! She's a sweet babe, I'm tellin' ya!" With a bang, he exited, stomping across the car park. Soon enough he was starting up the car and tugging at a box in his pocket. Aizen took one last look at the small clinic before opening the door and swooping down to seat himself in the car. Gin popped open the box, sliding out a cigarette and holding it between his lips lightly. He had set down the magazine on the dashboard, freeing his hand to dig around in his other pocket, searching for his lighter.
"You are still addicted to those?"
"Naaah, I jus' like holdin' 'em in my mouth an' pretendin' ta light 'em," Gin snorted sarcastically, flicking his lighter a few times before sucking in. He breathed out slowly, shifting into reverse. The cloud that poured out from his mouth formed pillows of death that soaked into the interior of the car. The stench alone was tickling Aizen's tear glands, and he looked down at the center console, blinking rapidly.
He saw the magazine, slightly rumpled along the edges and a few dogeared pages filling the insides. The front showed illustrations of two men in pure black shihakushou. Dramatic kanji spilled over the front, as well as some questionable article features: "Zanpakuto Care 101" and "How to Agree with a Disagreeable Captain".
"What magazine is that?" he asked, reaching out to pick it up. He hadn't seen one like it before, and wondered why the cover was displaying these fantasy people.
"Ah, shit," Gin said, and the car shuddered when he slammed on the brakes. It screeched to a stop, half-way out of the parking space. "That's the clinic's… d'ya mind goin' back in there an' givin' it back ta 'em?"
Aizen only raised an eyebrow, wrapping his long fingers around the glossy cover of the magazine and popping open the door in one sleek movement. He almost nailed the rear-view light of the car next to them with the mirror, but paid it no heed as he slid out of the car swiftly.
In moments he was headed across the car park again, intent on entering the lobby and leaving in enough time to get Gin to his urgent matter without much complaint from the silver-haired man. He unraveled the magazine for a moment, flicking through the pages lightly and letting his eyes trace the pictures and diagrams. One of the pages in particular he squinted and tilted his head at in order to read the god-awful handwriting.
Hanatarou was still standing in the lobby, swishing his pen back and forth as he waited for the female nurse to do something with the computer. Aizen captured his attention immediately, making brown lock with surprised blue. A shy pair of lips parted, forming a confused O as one of his black eyebrows angled upwards.
"My friend was so entranced by this amazing article," he almost made it a joke, flipping open the magazine to a certain page before handing it over to the male nurse. "That he forgot it did not belong to him. I apologize on his idiotic behalf."
But Hanatarou was focused on the article in question, his sapphire orbs locked onto the middle part of the page where a sticky note was attached. He looked up, and Aizen calmly turned with his hands in his pockets and nodded his farewell, gliding from the lobby.
"Took ya long enough," Gin groaned as the taller man entered the car for the umpteenth time that day.
"I am surprised you used the correct kanji for my name."
He wasn't changing the subject. Oh no.
"Well, yer my landlord. One should be able ta spell it right when they're fillin' out a complaint form."
"Which is why you also know both of my private numbers by heart?" he asked, and the man's grin stretched, revealing shiny teeth that were holding back a wicked laugh.
"Did I write down both of 'em? Goddamn, silly me."
Next chapter: Hanatarou now knows how to get ahold of Aizen using his private line… where is this going? A date, maybe? And what about the evil L-word that rhymes with "shove"?
Okay I'm kind of in a bad mood because I got two B's on my report card for third quarter… thus, mom's not letting me go to the dance with my friends tonight. T^T; It's OK, I'll just try to focus a little more during class and end the year with straight A's again. Yaaay, HSGQE week is over. Next major test is the SAT in May. Needless to say, I'm going to be a very, very busy little cuttlefish for the next two months. Siiiiiigh. Siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh.
Review with a cute smiley face? Favorite? Do what you want. God knows when the second part is going to be up… it may take a while, and I'm sorry. Things are crazy.
If you liked this, you are free to check out my other pieces.