Ren-sama's Note:

Thank you for the wait, everyone!

P.S. Akambo means 'baby.' Aka-chan is the more popular term but I used the term 'akambo' because it is formal and not endearing (at least for me), especially since Yamamoto uses it (in this fict) almost as a derogatory term to people many centuries younger than him and have lesser experience.


Chapter 17

Ichigo sighed. It wasn't the kind of slacking off that he was expecting at all. Rukia dragged him to the Kuchiki manor and then while they waited for Renji, she had decided to also make him wait because a Hell Butterfly came to her. It was from the Shinigami Women's Association that she was in and there seemed to be a sudden meeting. She refused to let Ichigo go back to their Barracks and told him to wait patiently in the living room because the meeting wouldn't last long, or so she said. But it had already been almost an hour and she still hasn't come back.

A quiet footstep made Ichigo look up and he saw, to his annoyance, Byakuya wearing not his usual Taichou uniform but a black floral kimono. The teen was annoyed not in Byakuya per se but at the fact that he found the Taichou rather… stunning. Well, Byakuya had always been stunning, but somehow, it was different today. The raven's hair was loose and without the kenseikan. And judging from the dripping tips, the noble had just finished his bath.

"What are you doing here, Ichigo Kurosaki?" Byakuya asked. For two weeks now, the teen had been trying to make Byakuya call him Kurosaki-taichou, but it seemed the noble liked calling his name fully, especially since the teen pointed out that he disliked it. It seemed Byakuya's sole happiness was seeing Ichigo's scowling face. Well, it's not that Ichigo could blame him. After all, he never called Byakuya in a respectful manner either despite the noble's cold protests.

"I'm waiting for Rukia." He shrugged. "She received an emergency call from the Shinigami Women's Association and told me not to leave until she comes back."

"I see." Both of Byakuya hands were folded over his chest, inside the sleeves of his kimono and making him appear overly formal. He then turned to a corner where a servant stood silently and unmoving. "Prepare us some tea and some cookies. And bring in the bottle of sugar cubes." Ichigo looked up and their gaze met. "Rukia told me you prefer overly sweet tea. She always talks about a lot of things." Byakuya answered coldly to the inquiring look that the teen was giving him.

Ichigo nodded before he furrowed his eyebrows again. "Is that bad? You look like you don't mind it at all though, that she talks a lot."

"I didn't say it's bad." Byakuya sat in front of Ichigo in a very formal way and closed his eyes. "But oftentimes, she speaks of a certain Taichou who keeps on making her worry by overworking himself. Although I don't know who that Taichou is, I'll make sure to cut him up into tiny little pieces if he ever made Rukia worry again." Then he opened his eyes and his cold glare was received by the teen, who gulped. That seemed to satisfy the noble's ego.

Ichigo was just so thankful that the servant chose that moment to arrive, together with the tray of tea and cookies. Ichigo thought he'd kill Rukia if she comes back, because of two reasons. First was the fact that she made her Taichou wait for her for a long time in somebody else's house. And second was that she kept talking to Byakuya about her worries for the orange-haired teen. And the said teen didn't even agree to her assumption that he was overworking himself! He was merely doing his job and he was happy doing the paperwork, something that would make all the other Taichous arch an eyebrow to. The paperwork took his mind away from everything else, and… he could converse animatedly with his inner spirits while doing the mindless task. It was way relaxing.

It was a good relaxation for him to hear the scroll of the ink pen on his paper while he listened to Shiro and Muramasa's daily banter. It seemed Zangetsu was much too happy to have another zanpakutou inside Ichigo's inner world because Shiro rarely bugged him now. The Hollow's sword always aimed for Muramasa nowadays, who was always easily provoked, much to Ichigo's surprise. He thought that Muramasa was a calm zanpakutou like Zangetsu, but it seemed he was far too wrong. The guy was as much of a stubborn and cunning fighter as Shiro, and the latter liked it that way.

Tea was served and Ichigo sipped a little from his cup, after he finished putting the sugar and stirred it of course, not minding the lack of conversation between him and his hospitable but cold host.

Byakuya watched as the teen sipped his tea, noticing that Ichigo was in a way elegant and graceful in his actions too. His long sun-kissed fingers held the cup with almost as much grace as Byakuya did. Maybe Juushirou taught him a little tact and formality after all? He himself doubted that though. Juushirou was graceful in his own way but he wasn't the type to care about formality. He would not force his own son to behave in a way that wasn't so like him. And that only meant one thing. Ichigo did it unconsciously. And Byakuya couldn't help but approve of the teen's behavior, so unlike his brash Fukutaichou even though both came from Rukongai and were even friends together with Rukia before they became Shinigamis.

Ichigo tipped his head a little to the right and closed his eyes as he savored the tea, and the noble couldn't help but admire the view, though he would never admit it. He had not seen Ichigo look this peaceful before. His eyes were closed and his long lashes gently caressed the skin below his eyes. His bright hair was, as usual, unruly, but it also looked so soft. The raven remembered how Juushirou always ruffled the teen's hair and how Ichigo seemed to like it so much that he sometimes even leaned in on the touch. Ichigo was a child, a small innocent child forced to grow up so fast that he had already forgotten his much needed childhood life.

And before Byakuya knew it, he was already developing compassion towards the child that he was gazing at. He felt that Ichigo was much too young to experience pain and suffering, but the teen's eyes said that he knew all about different kinds of pain now.

The noble remembered how empty and cold he felt when his wife Hisana died, how painful it was to continue with his life as if her death didn't make him want to follow her. It was heartbreaking how he wanted to die along with her. And yet, he had to coop it up inside him and appear strong and act like nothing happened. He didn't even cry in her funeral, though in his inner world Senbonzakura grieved when his home turned dark and lifeless together with his master. The full bloom Sakura trees were now withered and the lake was dried. There was no life in his inner world anymore. For Rukia's sake though, even if he wouldn't admit it out loud, he managed to continue living and acting. And knowing that Ichigo might still be feeling that way up until now because of Juushirou's death was unsettling him.

It had been fifty years since his wife's death and he now felt a little calmer. He was showered with Rukia's not-so-quiet affections even if he appeared to not appreciate them. Because he had someone to lean on, he was able to live on. But Ichigo was pushing people away unconsciously in fear of losing someone dear to him again. The noble could tell it since he had experienced the same pain in the past.

Maybe Rukia was right. Ichigo really did need something to take his mind off painful things and memories. "Ichigo Kurosaki," he found himself saying. "Have you chosen some new trainees to be part of your Division?"

Ichigo blinked before his eyes met steel gray ones. He didn't think Byakuya would be the one to start a conversation. "Ah, not yet, Byakuya. The 13th Division still hasn't recovered from many things, and I still need to focus on those. There will be time for recruitment, but not now I guess."

"Hn." Byakuya grunted. And he immediately realized it was so unlike him to do that. He let out a soft breath. Was Ichigo really the type to only open up and talk when talked to? He surely didn't look like it.

Ichigo looked up and saw that Byakuya was looking at him in that weird way again. He didn't know how it started, but lately, the noble always looked at him in that weird way. He didn't know what it was that the noble thought of while his eyes blazed like that. Byakuya's face remained cold, but his eyes said that he was thinking of something really disturbing.

The teen felt himself warm up inwardly. Most people said that Byakuya was cold and apathetic, but they didn't know that Byakuya was one of the most expressive people that Ichigo knew. The noble might not have any expression on his face but his eyes had it all, his deep and cool powerful gray orbs were the most expressive eyes that Ichigo had ever seen. Well, Juushirou might have been that way too, and Kaien, but those two were no longer in this world so they weren't counted. And knowing that so very few people could see this part of the noble made Ichigo feel prideful. He couldfeel that tingling sensation in his stomach again. He had not yet felt it before so he didn't know what it was, though he knew that Byakuya was the cause of it.

'Tsk, tsk. How naive, King.' Shiro snickered. 'It seems that old man Genryuusai is right after all. You are still an infant.'

"Tch. Shut up." Ichigo growled and Byakuya looked up at him, wide eyed and surprised. Ichigo immediately knew that he said it out loud. "Ah… just talking to myself." His eyes left the noble's and darted on the cookies. "Er, can I have a cookie?" He asked, almost shyly.

Byakuya arched an eyebrow at that. Ichigo surely wasn't shy when he accepted the tea. "Help yourself." Ichigo's expression brightened as he picked up a cookie and munched on it contentedly. He looked like a child to Byakuya then, an adorable one. And his eyebrow twitched in annoyance when he suddenly thought that.

"Ichigo!" Rukia said as she walked towards the living room. And then she paused when she saw Byakuya together with his Taichou and… having tea? "N-Nii-sama! I thought you have work?"

"I left the office earlier since there is a much annoying Taichou who keeps on trying to destroy the wall of my Barracks just because of my presence there." Ichigo grinned knowingly. Shinji was most likely having his ass whipped by Hiyori right now so it was definitely Kenpachi. The guy just didn't have it in him to knock. Or at least learn to destroy the wooden doors only, leaving the wall intact.

Rukia sat beside Byakuya and the elder noble asked a servant to bring another cup to the living room. When the cup arrived, Rukia poured herself some tea and sipped it with much grace that her mentor had taught her. She looked between her nii-sama and Ichigo, and noticed that both males looked quite comfortable in one another's company. That's a little surprising.

And then she saw the bottle filled with sugar cubes on the table. Ichigo must have requested for one.

"Rukia, may I remind you that making a guest wait for a long time all alone inside your house is so uncouth?" Byakuya voiced coldly before he sipped his own tea. Rukia immediately muttered an apology, but the older noble arched an eyebrow at that. "I believe I am not the guest here, Rukia. Don't apologize to me." Rukia bit her lower lip before she apologized to Ichigo.

"No, it's alright. If it really bothers me, I would have left a long time ago." Ichigo tried to salvage her but Byakuya wouldn't hear the end of it. He said that it was his job to discipline his younger sister and it would apply not only to Ichigo but also to other guests. Byakuya also told him that the teen might be alright with it, but there were other guests who wouldn't. The teen could only sigh. Byakuya was as strict as ever.

Afterwards, the male raven left the two alone and went towards the garden.

"So, how did it go? Your meeting?" Ichigo asked in hope of changing the subject.

Rukia smiled at him. "Nii-sama is right. I'm really sorry, Ichigo. The meeting went well. But we were having a little problem on the fact that Muguruma-taichou is very reluctant to let us take a picture of him half-naked." She sighed as if it's a very serious problem that was needed to be dealt with, before her eyes twinkled when she looked at him next. Ichigo felt dread. "Ichigo! You're a Vizard, right? You're their very close friend, right?" She had puppy eyes and he knew he wouldn't like what would come out of her mouth next.

Before she could even say it though, Ichigo had already guessed. "No, Rukia. I will not help in convincing him. Kensei will kill me before he hears the end of it. I love my life, thank you. And I love it quiet and peaceful."

Rukia pouted before she increased the power of her puppy eyes. "Pleaaaseeee?" Ichigo arched an eyebrow at her. Surely she knew that even though it worked on Renji quite well, Ichigo's standards were different?

Ichigo sighed. "A 'no' is a 'no,' Rukia Kuchiki." Great, now Rukia was sulking in the corner.

Rukia sighed. Aside from the fact that they still yet to get a half-naked picture of Kensei, there's still something else she needed to do. And it was way harder than the first. To take a picture of Ichigo and/or Byakuya smiling sweetly. Yes, it was like having to take a picture of a full bloom cherry blossom in the middle of winter. Or better yet, having to take a picture of Kenpachi in a lolita dress. Or even better, taking a picture of Soi Fon and Kurotsuchi's wedding. She shuddered just having to think of it.

"So, where's Renji?" Ichigo asked, snapping Rukia out of her thoughts.

She looked over Ichigo's shoulder, at Byakuya who was standing with his back to them and gazing at the slowly falling cherry petals in the garden. Fall is approaching fast. "Renji said that he will be late. It seems he has to finish his paperwork first before he can go out of the office. It's nii-sama's punishment for him." Ichigo arched an eyebrow at that. She leaned closer and added as a whisper. "Because I asked him to take a picture of nii-sama sleeping. He said that he was able to take it, but nii-sama woke up. And seconds after that, Renji was the one out cold."

Ichigo gulped. He didn't want to imagine what Byakuya did when he caught his own fukutaichou sneaking on him while taking pictures. He didn't want to see the remains of the camera either.

He understood Byakuya's side though. The guy was a very private person, just like him. And he also didn't want to have his privacy out in the public, like his sleeping face, or his half-naked body, or anything that was not natural for him to appear in a public magazine. Everybody saw this as coldness and indifference, but Ichigo knew that it was merely a matter of pride, of protecting his privacy, and hiding everything that might make him appear a little more vulnerable in public eyes.

Rukia, on the other hand, just felt annoyed that Ichigo never slept in the office, nor did he like to be disturbed while he's working. And moreover, Rukia was punished by the Shinigami Women's Association because she wasn't able to take a stolen picture of Ichigo half-naked too. She sighed as she remembered how she had to buy Ise-fukutaichou a Chappy the Bunny ink pen. It was ridiculous! Just because Nanao's Taichou was always willing to have his picture taken and even willing to take off all of his clothes, and always smiled and grinned and even slept all over the place, glasses-wearing fukutaichou already thought that taking pictures was an easy task! Rukia was stuck with two icebergs, for Soul Society's sake! Ichigo and her nii-sama were placed in her task. She could only take pictures of them from afar. And the payment wasn't good enough! They all thought she was bad at taking pictures. Hell, if ever Ichigo or Byakuya saw she was taking their pictures, they would immediately slice down the poor gadget.

"Should we meet up with Renji in the 6th Barracks then?" Ichigo asked as he stood up. He was obviously bored now. Rukia had to bite her lower lip again.

"Sorry for taking a lot of your time wasted, Kurosaki-taichou." She apologized seriously. Rukia knew that Ichigo was her friend, but that didn't mean that there was already no barrier between him as a Taichou and her as a fukutaichou. She still respected that barrier, sometimes.

Ichigo smiled a little. "It's okay. Maybe we can help Renji in his paperwork and then we can go out." He knew what Rukia was trying to do. Renji and Rukia might have hanged out together in their Academy days, but Ichigo wasn't with them. And when Ichigo arrived and hanged out with Renji and the others, Rukia had already left for the living world. And when Rukia arrived, she was to be executed and Ichigo was a wanted criminal. And when everything cleared, Ichigo had to sleep for two weeks and recuperate. Then there's the zanpakutou rebellion. And, when everything had been cleared again, Ichigo had become a Taichou and busied himself with work non-stop. She must've been missing the old times when the three of them would just go out together and have a good time without worrying about anything else.

Rukia grinned. "I think that's a good idea!"

And so they said their goodbye to Byakuya, who appeared to not even paying any attention them at all, and left.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Three months had passed since the appointment of the Vizards in their post. Byakuya liked working in his manor now than in his office, because not only Kenpachi destroyed the wall, the other Vizards had started to ask him for a fight too. And he would've accepted it if it was Ichigo, but it was Shinji, Kensei, or Rojurou. Not that he was biased in their powers, but he wanted to improve his power and only a rational person like Ichigo could give him satisfaction. Shinji and Kensei were way too all-out, more graceful than Kenpachi but still in the same league as him. Rojurou, on the other hand, was like water, flowing and dancing in battle. And Byakuya would look like an idiot having to fight with him. And thus, the only option was Ichigo, though the boy preferred his paperwork than going anywhere. Not that Byakuya asked him for a fight again after the Muramasa ordeal.

The noble sighed as he paused from doing his paperwork and looked out in the garden. He felt like berating himself. He put up with it in the beginning, but it was starting to annoy him now. Every time Ichigo went to his manor, the male noble would immediately ask the servants to bring in some tea with sugar cubes and some cookies. When Rukia told him one day two months ago that Ichigo liked strawberries, he started bringing in strawberries too. He didn't know what was wrong with him. And it was getting annoying and annoying.

Ichigo, during his second visit, had walked out into the garden and he said that he liked the place. Ever since then, Rukia would take Ichigo out into the garden and the two would enjoy the view of the falling sakura petals. Ichigo had started to frequently visit the mansion in the past three months too, much to Byakuya's annoyance and curiosity. Sometimes the teen would go together with Renji, but most often it was only Ichigo and Rukia chatting in the garden while they idly watched the sakura trees.

Byakuya would even sometimes find Ichigo sleeping underneath the trees while Rukia sat beside the teen, working on some paperwork quietly. The sight somehow felt dazzling for him and he didn't know why. The way the petals would idly fall down on the sleeping taichou overwhelmed him in a weird kind of way.

Fall was a long phase of season in Soul Society and Byakuya learned that Ichigo liked this season the most. Byakuya liked that season too, not that he ever shared that information with anyone.

As the noble stared out in the garden, the view of sakura petals slowly falling on the ground warmed and made him relaxed. He had always associated himself with cherry blossoms. And he couldn't help but curse inwardly when he felt overwhelmed every time Ichigo looked at the cherry blossoms in his garden like the trees were the most beautiful flower-bearing tree there ever was. He liked how the teen's eyes always turned softer when they gazed at the flowers or how Ichigo would appear more relaxed as he inhaled the sweet scent. And the raven liked how the petals slowly fell on the teen, gracing his presence with their little dance from the branch to the ground and brushing his cheeks and sleeveless arms while falling.

And right at this moment, he could see the teen in his garden. Ichigo's back was on him and the teen was facing one of the trees and looking up at the falling petals again. The teen's haori was slightly fluttering with the slight cold breeze.

Byakuya was sure that the teen couldn't see him from his spot, though it appeared ridiculous why he would want to hide in his own manor. He watched as the teen slowly turned around and smiled, his usual aloof but kind smile. Ichigo wasn't looking at him though. Rukia appeared not seconds after and greeted Ichigo with a punch on the shoulder. It seemed his younger sister often liked punching Ichigo's muscled though lean shoulder.

He sighed again. He's doing it a lot these past few months. He felt so restless, and yet he didn't know why. Lately, he had been thinking of the teen even in Ichigo's absence, and he knew that it was more than a passing thought. And it unnerved him always when he caught himself. Maybe there's something wrong with him. Or maybe there was something wrong with Ichigo, the way he could evoke such annoyance to the noble even without trying.

It annoyed him so much that normally, he would've already consulted Juushirou about it and sought the older man's advice. But since that wouldn't and couldn't happen anymore, he found himself in frustration on what he should do. And besides, even if Juushirou was still alive, Byakuya doubted he'd open up to the older male anyway since it was the man's son the noble was starting to have a problem dealing with.

Maybe a good spar would do him good.

And yet, only thinking of Shinji and Kenpachi already made his head throb. He massaged his temples before he decided that the best way to stop thinking was doing the mindless paperwork.

It was already dusk by the time he finished and Ichigo wasn't in the garden anymore. It seemed Rukia had dragged her Taichou somewhere else again.

Byakuya knew that it was a good thing that Ichigo had started to come out of his office, even if his only hang out place was the noble's manor and some forest in Rukongai for training. The man was just so stubborn and refused to ever do some unwinding and relaxation despite Rukia's encouragement.

Ichigo wasn't forcing himself to obey Rukia's whims. Byakuya could see that Ichigo genuinely didn't mind it much. But the wall was still there. No matter how much Rukia tried to make the teen more sociable and talkative, Ichigo reverted back to his lone and quiet self afterwards. The wall was that thick. And not even Rukia was making any dent on it, let alone break it. By now, the male noble knew that it wasn't just Juushirou who caused it. It was probably a culmination of agonizing and sorrowful events that had built up together over the past few years. And these events had crippled the teen emotionally, to the point that he guarded himself so heavily that no one could even enter inside his heart now. Not even his friends whom he kept at arms' length.

And now, Byakuya realized he was once again thinking of the teen. He closed his eyes tight and gritted his teeth in frustration. He felt like slamming his head on the wooden table, or maybe even better on the cement wall.

'Master, you can ask me or confide in me, you know.' Senbonzakura voiced inside his mind.

Byakuya opened his eyes once more and found himself in his inner world. And his eyes widened. Senbonzakura smiled from beneath his red oni-like mask when he saw Byakuya's surprise. The noble had not been in his inner world ever since Rukia's execution after all.

The noble couldn't even believe that it was his inner world. He had become so used to seeing black, withered cherry blossoms under the starless and moonless, dark cloudy night. The wind was always cold and merciless so he didn't like staying in the place, and he pitied Senbonzakura for having to live in it. The lake had always been dry and the ground was cracked and lifeless, barren, like it had suffered severe drought and plague. It had been like that ever since Hisana's death. And even with Rukia's shower of love, his inner world had remained barren and lifeless.

He gulped as he took in his surroundings now. The trees were still withered and black, though not so much anymore, but the lake had water, and plenty of it. Koi fishes swam contentedly in the depths of the clear lake and Byakuya stared at them in wonder for a moment. The ground was still cracked, but there were some small grasses sprouting here and there, compensating for the dryness of the brown soil. And, the most stunning shock of all was the bright crescent moon hanging up in the cloudless sky. There were stars here and there as well. And it was comforting, because it wasn't so dark anymore. Not to mention it wasn't cold at all.

"Why..? How did this… happen?" Byakuya asked silently, as if afraid that it was merely a dream and that it would fade the moment his voice raised. He didn't even remember to berate himself for his stutter.

Senbonzakura smiled again. "This is because of a certain sun that had managed to creep up inside you and managed to make you feel again, even if just a little."

Byakuya looked at his zanpakutou, not really understanding what Senbonzakura meant. And the zanpakutou had to sigh at his master's denseness. It wasn't love per se yet, but the proximity of this new feeling to love was not to be underestimated. And Byakuya's feelings, it seemed, were growing quite steadily without the noble's conscious notice.

"Then, Master, would you like to tell me what it is that you've been thinking these past few months?" Senbonzakura asked politely.

Byakuya had to think for a while. And then it hit him. He wasn't thinking of Hisana at all, at least not in the way he used to think of her. He used to wallow in sorrow and pain just thinking of her. But now… Why though? He still couldn't understand. Even if the pain was lesser than the first few decades, it still gripped him tightly. Or at least he thought that way. Senbonzakura seemed to know something that he didn't know of. The zanpakutou lived in his heart. Of course, Senbonzakura would know the things that not even he could realize. Maybe it was because he had gotten closer to Rukia? No, maybe because he had become more open to other people? Or maybe because he had been more hospitable to Ichigo in the last few months that his heart was granted peace and quiet? Maybe… or maybe not.

Whatever it was, he would make sure that Senbonzakura would spill it all out.

The zanpakutou could see that the things Byakuya kept thinking were getting more and more far off from the real reason, and he had to sigh again.

"Can you please stop doing that? It's annoying, Senbonzakura." The noble voiced when the zanpakutou sighed for the third time. "You can just get to it and tell me what it is."

"As much as I want to, I cannot, Master." His masked companion said. "You have to realize these things on your own or it'll be pointless." Byakuya's eyes narrowed at his zanpakutou's audacity to defy him. But Senbonzakura's gaze, as well as his stance, told the noble that he would not be fazed or even waver in his decision.

Byakuya had to improvise. "When did this world start to change then?"

Senbonzakura thought for a while before he shrugged. He might as well give some clue. "About three or four months ago."

Byakuya had to furrow his eyebrows. That long?

The zanpakutou then walked towards one of the trees and sat on the ground, leaning on it. "First, the moon came out. Then the stars. And before long, a rain shower… the lake was filled. Koi fishes appeared. And grasses started to sprout here and there. It was amazing to look at."

"And?" Byakuya asked. "What's the feeling that made it all happen?" Senbonzakura smiled before he shook his head.

"Not answering you, Master." He said in a teasing tone that irked the noble.

"If you will not tell me anyway, then I'll be leaving." Byakuya said. Senbonzakura sighed. His master was not only dense, he's stubborn too.

"Fine, I'll give you a hint." Senbonzakura said, knowing that from the rate the noble was going, it might take Byakuya at least another century before he could figure anything out. Byakuya looked at Senbonzakura coolly as he waited, though the zanpakutou only knew him too well to actually believe his expression of boredom. "I think you should try sparring with some other Taichou."

Byakuya's eyes narrowed. He thought that Senbonzakura would give him a solid hint. But the opinion he received was only too short to be considered as one. And besides, if it was a hint, Byakuya had already considered trying a spar to get his mind off things. It wasn't new anymore.

"I mean it, Master." Senbonzakura immediately saw the disagreement in Byakuya's eyes. "It will help you realize what it is that caused this scenery before you. And when I said sparring, I didn't mean just any Taichou will do. Pick the one most suitable to your taste." After that, Senbonzakura decided to vanish and Byakuya was left slightly gaping at the spot where he had been a second ago.

Pick the one most suitable to his taste? What the hell did that mean?

And when the raven noble opened his eyes once more, he was once again in the confines of his own room. He sighed before he thought of Senbonzakura's words. It didn't make any sense at all.

And thus, he was bothered thinking about those words for a week, thinking deeply about the request and who to approach for a spar. He thought that maybe Shinji would do because the Taichou was more civil than Kenpachi. But then he changed his mind at the last minute when Shinji came barging in his Division asking for him to fight. Kenpachi did the same and irked him off. And now he was left with no one to ask.

Maybe that person wouldn't mind?




Ren-sama's Note:

Ah, finally, some ByaIchi moments! (Though not the kind of moment that some of you wants *grins and winks*) Yes, sorry. This chapter might be a little mushy or OOC for some of you. And a little fast-paced too… But please don't let it deter you. Review! And no flames please. I hate flames. ˆoˆ