Chapter 5

The next hours were just a blur to Toshiro. And so were the next days. Going to squad 4, seeing Hinamori just lay there, unmoving and not breathing, her blood pooling on the white tiled floor. Matsumoto dragging him out while crying her heart out for her dead friend. All of it passed the young captain. He couldn't register anything that happened. Only one thing was clear in his mind: his best friend, the person who had always been there for him, his sister was dead. But unlike the rest of Hinamoris friends, Toshiro wasn't crying.

Later, Squad 10 office

Squad 10 had been unusually quiet for the past days. No-one was yelling at anyone, no-one was training… Everything was dead silent. Inside the office, Toshiro was doing his paperwork, alone as usual. Suddenly, the door opened, revealing a very worried-looking Ichigo. Toshiro glanced up for just long enough to see who it was, but immediately returned to his work. Ichigo sighed deeply before walking in and sitting onto the couch. He just sat there in silence for a moment, watching the white-haired captain work. Then he opened his mouth to speak.

"You should take a break." he said matter-of-factly. Toshiro merely shrugged and muttered something about not having time. Ichigo didn't say anything for a while; he just stared at the small boy. Then he stood up and walked around the desk to stand next to the white-haired captain. He grabbed the back of the boys' chair and turned it around so the boy was facing him.

"Seriously, you need to take a break. You're doing Rangikus' paperwork without complaining and you haven't even tried to find her. You're way too tired to keep working like this Toshiro." the orangette said. Toshiro just stared at the taller teen before turning his chair back the way it was before Ichigo turned him.

"Even if I did find her, she wouldn't do any of her work. Now, would you please leave me alone so I can work? I seriously need to finish these." Toshiro stated without even looking at Ichigo anymore. The ex-substitute took a deep breath.

"At least tell me when did you last eat?" Ichigo asked. Toshiro shrugged his shoulders without even looking at the 5th captain.

"I don't know, couple of hours ago maybe? Why do you care anyway?" the small captain said, glaring at Ichigo from the corner of his eye. A vein started to pop on Ichigos forehead when he heard this. He walked around the table again so that he was on the opposite side of the boy facing him before he slammed both of his hands onto the table. The sudden loud sound made Toshiro look up at the other.

"That's a shitload of crap! 'A couple of hours ago', my ass! Toshiro, you've been here for three whole days! No-on has come in or left this room during that time!" Ichigo yelled so loud he actually worried if the head-captain would scold him for making such a ruckus, but he pushed the thought aside as fast as it came into his mind. Right now he was more concerned about the boy who was now looking shocked. His eyes were wide open and his mouth was open ever so slightly, forming a confused look onto his face.

"Th-three days?" Toshiro asked and Ichigo nodded. The smaller captain just looked at the taller captain for a while before saying anything else. Toshiro took a deep breath and wiped the confused look from his face before turning to Ichigo.

"So, I've been here for three days? Is that what you came to tell me? If so, thank you for telling me but I'll have to ask you to leave now. I really have to finish these." the boy said with a serious tone. Ichigos mouth fell open: he couldn't believe what the boy was saying. He took a deep breath and walked to the boy, turning his chair around again.

"Okay, captain Unohana did say this wouldn't be easy, but I didn't think I would actually have to do this. Sorry Toshiro." he said, and before the boy could say another word, his whole world went black.

Later, Squad 4 Infirmary

Toshiro's eyes fluttered open slowly as he took in his surroundings. The first thing to catch his eye was a large window on his right. At first he thought he was in his own room, but then he noticed that the scenery was different. He sat up on the bed he had been sleeping on and looked around. The room wasn't big, but it wasn't small either. The only pieces of furniture in the room were the bed Toshiro was currently sitting on, a small nightstand, a chair and a small closet.

'I see' he thought. 'I'm at the infirmary… How did I get here?' he wondered and rubbed his head a little. He had a tough time remembering what had happened.

'Oh yeah… Kurosaki knocked me out.' he finally remembered. Just as he was about to jump out of bed and run to kick the ex-substitutes ass, the door to the room opened, revealing the ever-so-calm captain of squad 4, quickly followed by captains of squads 8 and 13. Toshiro sighed: he was about to hear it. Captain Unohana walked to the bed, smiling sweetly (as usual).

"I see that you're finally awake. How are you feeling captain Hitsugaya?" she asked the young captain. Toshiro blinked a few times as he processed what the elder woman had just said.

"Finally awake? How long have I been here?" he asked. Captain Unohana sighed and sat down onto the bed, right next to the small boy.

"You've been asleep for 6 days, without any kind of medicine. You were just so tired that you slept for 6 days on your own." she said, looking , at the boy with a worried look in her eyes. Toshiro took her words in slowly before running his hand through his messy hair before throwing the covers off of himself and swinging his legs over the edge of the bed in order to get up. However, he was stopped by captain Unohana.

"I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to ask you to stay here for a few more days." she said with obvious concern in her voice. Toshiro blinked a few times before opening his mouth to speak.

"I think I've been here for long enough captain Unohana. I really need to get back to work, heaven only knows how much damage Matumoto has already caused…" before he could finish, he was cut off by Ukitake.

"You will stay here until captain Unohana says otherwise. You really need to gather your strength." he said. The commanding tone in his voice surprised everyone in the room. Ukitake was usually calm and didn't raise his voice too often. The older on of the white-haired captains took a breath before continuing.

"Captain Hitsugaya, please, sit down." he said, his voice still commanding. Toshiro was too surprised not to obey so he sat down next to captain Unohana, who was still sitting on the bed. For a while, the room was completely silent. Toshiro was just staring the floor as if it was somehow interesting. Then, after what seemed like forever, Kyoraku spoke up.

"Don't you worry about your squad now kiddo, Rangiku-chan and your 3rd seat are taking care of everything. All you have to do is get better, okay?" the brunette captain said, smiling at Toshiro. The white-haired boy merely nodded. There was nothing he could say to argue with the elder captains. Captain Unohana looked at the boy for a while before gently placing her hand on his shoulder.

"This is for your own good. I hope you remember that" she said with a gentle voice. Toshiro nodded silently. After a few seconds, captain Unohana stood up and led the other captains out of the room, leaving after them. Once at the door she turned around and smiled at Toshiro.

"I'll be back in a while. Please try to get some rest." she said before closing the door behind her. When Toshiro was sure that she was gone, he took a deep breath and flopped down onto the bed, folding his arms under his head.

'I'm gonna be here for a while… Might as well get some sleep.'

'Even though you just slept for six days straight? Master, I'm afraid you have other things to worry about. For example, you should be worrying about freezing your inner world over. It's getting a bit chilly, even for me.'

'What am I supposed to do about it? There's nothing wrong with me so maybe it's you causing it with your constant worrying.' Toshiro said to the great ice-dragon.

'Master, I know this is difficult for you, but you need to face the facts and get over them. Momo Hinamori is de-'

The dragon never got the chance to finish that sentence. Toshiro cut off the link between himself and the dragon. The white-haired boy laid on the bed for a few minutes before falling asleep again.

8 days later, squad 4 Infirmary

Toshiro was sitting on his bed in the infirmary, reading a book to keep his mind occupied. Unohana was still not ready to let him leave the 4th squad, so he was pretty much stuck there. Of course, Matsumoto had brought him books and some paperwork that needed the captains' signature, but other than that, he had nothing to do. He was just about to put the book away when he heard someone knock on the door.

"Yeah?" he said, looking at the door and waiting for it to open. He took the covers off of himself and swung his legs over the edge of the bed just as the door did open. Toshiro was expecting it to be Matsumoto, but he was wrong. It was his brand new 3rd seat.

"What are you doing here Ichimaru? Where's Matsumoto?" he growled, glaring at the man. Ichimaru just gave the captain his trademark (creepy) smirk.

"Ran is out on an emergency mission, she told me to get your signature on these captain~." the fox-faced man said with a sing-song voice, handing the papers to the smaller male. Toshiro took the papers from Ichimaru and pulled his nightstand in front of himself in order to sign the papers. The silver-haired man just stood there quietly, watching him for a while.

"How have you been doing captain?" he finally asked, making the boy look up. "You've been here for two weeks now, and the squad members still have no idea where you are exactly. " he stated matter-of-factly. He walked over to the boy and leaned close to his face.

"Don't you think it's about time to get over your little friends death?"

This made Toshiro stand up so fast he knocked his "desk" over, making the papers scatter all over the floor. He stared at the silver-haired man with anger in his beautiful blue eyes. He took a deep breath before speaking.

"I don't see how that would be any of your business, Ichimaru. Now, if that was all, please leave me alone." he stated coldly. But the man didn't leave, actually he did the opposite. He took walked towards the boy until there was barely any room in between them, forcing the boy look up to him.

"Stop this Shiro-chan. No amount of self-pity will ever bring little Momo back." Ichimaru said coldly, looking the boy straight into his eyes. He had even opened his eyes a little, so that his red irises were visible just a little bit. Toshiro was furious. Ichimaru was the last person he wanted to tell him what to do.

"Why do you even care?! It's not like you're worried about me! Just this stupid game of yours and just fucking leave!" he yelled at the elder man. Ichimaru grabbed the boys arm tightly and forced the smaller one to look at him.

"She's dead. She's been dead for over two weeks and her funeral will be in three more days. If you really were her best friend you would be thinking about her, not sitting at the infirmary feeling sorry for yourself and denying the facts. She's dead Shiro-chan, and no-one can bring her back anymore." Ichimaru said with a serious tone, his voice even. The smaller male tried to struggle free, but Ichimarus grip only tightened around his arm. The elders words slowly sunk into Toshiros consciousness, forcing him to face the ugly truth.

Hinamori was dead. His sister, his best friend, the only person he ever actually opened up to, the person who knew him the best. She was dead.

Toshiro snapped out of those thoughts for a while when he felt Ichimaru pull him close and embrace him.

"It's allright, Shiro-chan. Let it all out…" the man whispered into his ear. That made Toshiro realize he had tears running down his face. Without thinking about it, he grabbed the back of Ichimarus robes and cried into the mans chest. He let the wall he had been building, his denial, break down as he let everything out. The men stayed there for a good while, the only sound in the room being Toshiros hopeless sobs. When the boy finally started collecting himself and his sobs died down, he realized that they were both on the bed, Ichimaru leaning against the wall and holding Toshiro on his lap. In any other situation, the boy would've started yelling at the elder, but the crying wore him out so he was too tired to say anything. Instead he allowed himself to fall asleep in the others arms.

"You better be gone when I wake up you bastard…" Toshiro muttered before falling asleep. Ichimaru chuckled and ran his long, slender fingers through the boys' silky white hair. Once he was sure the boy was asleep, he got up, placed the boy to lay down to the bed and covered his with a blanket. Before leaving, he gave a quick kiss to the small captains' forehead.

"Sleep tight, Shiro-chan~"

MBA: Wow, last update three months ago. That took a while…

Angela: Well, you've been busy… Like right now, you should be studying to your exams.

MBA: "Dying" belongs to that word for a reason…

Angela: Do you want to retest before Christmas?


Angela: Then get back to the books you lazy bastard!

Toshiro: Again, I was written to be emo. Why does this always happen?

Angela: Get used to it kid, she has more ion store for you.

Toshiro: Goddamnit…

Lambtron: Angel still doesn't own Bleach, even so she wants to! Give her reviews, maybe she'll start writing the new chapter right after exam week!

MBA: *behind a pile of books* See you guys next time!