Disclaimer: I don't own Bleach, or any of the characters used in this fic. They all belong to Tite Kubo. I only own any original characters that I choose to include, as well as any original plot ideas.

My Boy

A/N: Pre-series; pre-TBTP.

"He will never recover," he heard the doctor say. It was a hushed tone, the sort people used to soften a serious blow. "I'm sorry."

He heard her cry then, her footsteps hurrying to his door. He crawled back across the floor and into his bed, lying still. The screen was pulled back with a sound, his mother's shuddering breaths the only sound aside from his quiet, ragged breathing.

"My baby," she heard his mother whisper. She closed the door.

His days were always the same. Mother doting on him, cradling him in her arms, with long baths on cold days, and warm food and the medications that always failed. And she would cry. Oh, how she would cry for him, her prayers inaudible amidst her tears.

Always, at least as long as he had known, had he been sick. Kept indoors, away from pollen, from cold, from even snow. A small statue affixed to his own windowsill, longing for a life where he could be free as other boys and girls were.

Lying there in the cool air that floated through the room, he decided. He would prove the doctors wrong; he would live. And his mother wouldn't have to cry anymore.