Before You Forget About Me
Chapter One: In Another Life
Hitsugaya was still young and reckless. Renji Abarai had to grab him back at the collar to restrain him. "Easy, lowlife."
Hitsugaya shot him a withering glare at the suggestion. He bit his comment about how utterly ironic that was back with effort. He tugged himself free of Renji. "Can't believe we're letting him get away."
"With that…attitude of his."
Renji had felt conflicting emotions at the attitude their friend had displayed too. He didn't appreciate being abandoned, but he appreciated being shunned for caring about it even less so. "Guy's a dick, granted."
"Stupid Ichigo." Traces of defeat wove into his words. They had never seen Ichigo act like this before.
It was like he was hiding something.
Don't come with me, he'd said. And something about breathing space.
Hitsugaya's nose creased into his frown. "I'm going back."
Hitsugaya's eyes revealed he wasn't so sure. "To you know where."
Ichigo kept his gaze high, above the edge of the rock face. When he thought all was clear, he dipped down into the hollow cleft there.
"You really think no one's gonna find you here?"
Grimmjow's teeth came through his snarl like an animal's. A feral sound slipped though his teeth. "You don't want to keep it down by any chance, do you?"
Ichigo sighed, still depressed that he'd had to turn on his friends that way. It wasn't their fault they'd nearly caught him out stealing food for Grimmjow. It was…stupid Grimmjow's.
"Here, stupid Arrancar," Ichigo dug out the piece of bread he'd gotten off the counter in Rukia's house, tossing it into awaiting paws. "Hope it's worth it."
"Aha," Grimmjow said disinterestedly. He surveyed the bread for a moment, reluctant to bite into it so soon.
"What?" Ichigo's attempt not to care went to nothing. He glowered at Grimmjow. "Don't say you don't want it, you ungrateful…"
Grimmjow had scoffed it up already, striking a glance at Ichigo before he could yell at him further. "Hmph. Bread. What do you take me for."
Ichigo ignored the unappreciative remark. "So, when are you gonna be out of here?" Ichigo had been pushing for a week already. Grimmjow couldn't escape his enemies forever.
"See first, I'm gonna wait a while…"
"Let this whole thing blow over…"
Grimmjow nodded, resolute his plan would carry him to safety. "The world's quite unfair sometimes, huh Ichigo?"
"Oh, like you have any idea."
"I knew it," Hitsugaya was exclaiming loudly, casting his angry eyes across the room. "Byakuya is with him on this one!"
The vacancy of the house seemed to imply Byakuya was out at the moment, not necessarily that he was out with Ichigo.
Renji replied with a sarcastic smile, "Yeah…My Captain is bust I tell you."
"Why else would Ichiho visit Byakuya, Renji? Come on."
"Maybe he was just visiting Rukia."
"You're so naive," Hitsugaya's childishness was hardly ever detectable in everyday life. What had given birth to this side of him?
They should never have formed the Ichigo-Renji-Hitsugaya friendship deal they'd thought would be fun for doing missions together. Look how that had backfired. Ichigo had waved his goodbyes and left Renji alone with Hitsugaya in the stupid team that he could never leave now. Well, without the whole thing being personal against Hitsugaya anyway.
Reni broke from his reverie as the sound of moving furniture caught his attention. "Hitsugaya, are you stupid? Put that back where you found it."
"What's this?" Hitsugaya asked, pulling something up from under the couch.
A small strand of blue hair stared back at Renji.
"A…piece of blue fluff?"
"You know what Ichigo's doing now, right? Don't you?"
Ichigo pulled his hand up, stifling a sneeze unsuccessfully. "Ah-chuu!"
Grimmjow picked the corners of his mouth up into a smile for him. "Aww."
"Shut it. It's below seventy degrees out here. Why won't you come inside?"
"Well, that would just be plain uncomplicated, wouldn't it?"
"Who are you so afraid of? My dad? My sisters?"
"Your friends, Ichigo," Grimmjow placed emphasis on the word. "I'm not exactly good Shinigami company."
Ichigo had barely remembered that part. He couldn't fathom why he himself needed to be wary of Grimmjow when he was cramped like a stubborn child in the hollow crevice of a boulder in the far edges of a Soul Society town somewhere. Hiding from bigger demons.
"Why'd you do it, Grimmjow?"
"Why'd you save me?" Ichigo revisited the memory, unsure he could count on it. How reliable had his mind been back when it had created it?
Grimmjow turning on Ulquiorra. Gin and Tousen being caught off guard at the sheer brutality of Grimmjow's defense of Ichigo.
Ichigo's expression demanded an answer.
Grimmjow sighed before forcing one for him. "Do you remember anything, Ichigo? About when you were alive?"
Ichigo took pause, holding his thoughts together. The words evoked something.
"Before you and your family died and came up to Soul Society, you were alive. Do you remember that?"
Ichigo shook his head faintly.
"Do you remember why you died?"
He wasn't answered. Grimmjow acknowledged that his Soul Society friends had probably kept him in the dark about it. Understandable. But not very brave of them.
"Oh, so you didn't forgive them then," Grimmjow realized something else aloud, smiling emptily. "You just don't know."
"So what are you getting at?" Ichigo tried returning to the conversation. "You still can't tell me why you jumped in front of me back there."
"Some people retain their memories after death, Ichigo. You must be stupid or something."
"What does that mean?"
Grimmjow picked himself up from the rock face in one fluid movement. He stuck his face in Ichigo's until their mouths were a breath apart. "It means…that this…doesn't really feel all that uncomfortable for you, does it Ichigo?"
"Uh…" Ichigo was too shocked to react for a moment, not grasping the situation in its entirety. He wanted to say that it felt weird, but it really didn't. "What's that supposed to mean…Grimmjow?"
Grimmjow knocked his jaw forwards and closed the gap between them. The kiss was something brief. It lingered before Grimmjow drew away again.
"Didn't feel all that weird, did it? Ichigo?" Things Grimmjow wasn't telling him stirred in his blue gaze.
Ichigo felt a cold like liquid drop down his spine. "Grimmjow…You…"
"That's the funny thing," Grimmjow said without hearing him out, caught up in a breath of laughter. "It was you."
This is the first part of a short series I'm doing about GrimmIchi.
In case anyone's still confused after reading this, the story goes that Ichigo has somehow and died and is now living in Soul Society as a real Shinigami, but has somehow lost all his memories from before death(which is probably just a consequence of death.)
This isn't so much the first chapter as a prologue technically.
This is just to get you to grips with the idea that Ichigo has forgotten something…that is apparently very important to Grimmjow.~
Hope you like it!