A/N Hope you like this. Short chapter, but I promise that the next one will be longer. R&R!

"I failed them..." Ichigo whispered for the thousandth time since his defeat. He had been unable to defeat Aizen... and this is what it cost him. His entire town, left in flaming ruins. His entire town, dead. His entire town, gone forever.

Tears ran down his face as he recalled his friends' death... As he saw Aizen's smirking face as Aizen left through a Garganta... Ichigo's hands curled into fists. Whatever it takes, I will kill the bastard. His mind recalled Inoue's death. How she lay dying in his arms, confessing her love for him. He remembered how Rukia had gotten impaled by Aizen's sword... How Chad got stabbed by Ichimaru... Their deaths were to many to mention.

All because I failed them. If I had beaten Aizen... if only I could have killed him. But even Ichigo's immense power was not enough to kill Aizen. And Aizen was gone now. Gone back to Las Noches.

Ichigo wondered how he could go after Aizen. Urahara was dead, and he did not know how to make a Garganta. Perhaps he should seek help? He wondered of rumors of a Slayer in California. He had also heard that another plot of spirit-rich land was there. That might well be Aizen's next target.

And if this Slayer was there, then that was double the reason to go there. Ichigo stood up.

He wore his kimono, and had Zangetsu wrapped in bandages by his side. He stared out at the wreckage of Karakura Town one last time... and felt despair once more. How can I be strong enough to beat Aizen? I already failed once... And I will not fail again!

All he knew was that Aizen had not made the King's key. Who knew why? Perhaps it was because there were not enough souls left alive in the desolate place. Perhaps it was because the town itself was destroyed when Aizen got to it. Who knew? All he cared about was that this gave him another chance.

Ichigo's eyes blazed with a desire for vengeance. His heart sought it. His limbs trembled with desire to take it. Aizen would strike at another spirit-rich mile of land soon... and Ichigo was pretty sure it would be at this town.

Sunnydale, California.