Hello everyone! This is a short one-shot I wrote for my closest friend, Alyx. It takes place after the second-to-last episode, so there are minor spoilers; be aware. Oh, and in the show and manga it's the end of Summer, but I just love Winter so I changed the season (hope you don't mind).


Eyes wide, he glanced at his hand to find smooth and cold fingers wrapping themselves around his much more clammy ones (an unfortunate result of being around the very woman holding his hand now).

"I-Ichigo?" Her strawberry pigtails bobbed up and down as she pulled him along at a rather swift pace. Without slowing or turning to face him, she answered, "I already told you where we're going, Kisshu!" The snow crunched beneath their feet with every step they took along the street. The sky was already dark, a few clouds hung overhead, and they could see their breath in front of them due to the winter air.

Kisshu rolled his eyes, regaining his confidence from her innocent remark. "I meant our hands, Kitten. Have you finally fallen for me?" A crooked smile inched its way onto the alien's face as he noticed Ichigo flush in anger. She let his hand fall back to his side but kept up the same pace. An awkward silence dragged out between them until Ichigo came to a complete stop.

A confused look washed over Kisshu's face. "Uh, this is where you wanted to take me? It's just a hill and some trees...?"

"I guess…"

"Ichigo?" Concern flickered in his amber eyes. The mew tucked some hair behind her ear and stared blankly ahead of her. Snowflakes glistened in the sky and landed on her red nose. Letting moments go by, she took a deep breath and turned to face her friend. "Thank you, Kisshu. For everything. For saving my life, for trying to save Aoyama's*…" Tears formed in her eyes, but she wasn't going to let them fall. Unsure of what to say, Kisshu just nodded. Stars began dotting the cloudy sky, a sign that the alien's departure to his own planet was very soon. It was obvious Ichigo wanted to spend what little time she had left with him together.

"I won't be gone long. And when I'm back, who knows, maybe you'll realize how much you love me and you'll finally give me that kiss I've been waiting for." The cocky look on his face vanished when he noticed the tears spilling from Ichigo's eyes. The look on her face was enough to shut him up completely.

"Stop." Her voice was firm, even though her body was quivering. "I hate it when you do that. You're leaving tomorrow but you're still joking around. Can't you see that I'm going to miss you?"

Despite the sincerity in Ichigo's words, Kisshu still let out a laugh. The gesture caused Ichigo's face to flush once again and she bit her tongue, frustrated by his ignorance. Putting his hands up in defence, Kisshu cooed, "I'm laughing at how cute you are, Kitten." He invited her to come closer and when she did so, he began:

"Going back to my world isn't going to be easy for me either. I have nobody waiting there for me. I have no friends, not even any enemies, which is saying a lot, 'cause people don't exactly like me." Scratching his neck and laughing nervously, he continued, "What I'm trying to say is all I've got is you now. And I'll be damned if you fall in love with some other guy while I'm gone. You are my kitten after all. I'm really sorry for the way I treated you and the rest of the café. I just wanted someone to be proud of me for once, you know?" Ichigo wrapped her arms around his waist, sending chills up his spine. Kisshu didn't sound like himself at all, it made her feel uneasy, which is not how she wanted to feel tonight.

"I'm proud of you. You did what was right, and for that, we all forgive you. Besides, you have all of us now." With another nod of his head and a barely visible blush on his face, Kisshu gazed upon the billions of stars that filled the sky. Squinting, he could see his home planet. Ichigo looked at the sky too, noticing how late it was. "No," she whispered.

"Ichigo," Kisshu started. He wrapped his arm around her shoulder, pulling her closer. Heart beating like a drum, even Ichigo's thoughts were sputtering nonsense. Kisshu, noticing her awkward stance, brought his mouth closer to her ear. "See that one really bright star right there?"

"Ah…!" Ichigo squirmed uncomfortably as her whole body temperature rose so high, despite the freezing weather, she was sure she was going to faint. Her gaze slid across his arm and to where his finger pointed. "Y-yeah, I see it." Scarlet red flooded her face as she felt Kisshu's chest rising and falling from every breath he took.

"Well, that's where I'll be." Ichigo focused on the bright star, realizing just how far it really was. She peered down at her feet, lost in thought. Kisshu crossed his legs as he floated silently beside 'his kitten'. "Ichigo?" She looked up at him with a smile.

"I'll wait, don't worry. I'll be here every night, watching that star until you return. Just come home safely, okay?" She closed her eyes and felt the cool air on her skin, smile still plastered on her face.

Home…What a strange word. Kisshu always thought home was the planet he came from. Was it really here? Watching the snowflakes dance as they fell onto Ichigo's strawberry-red hair caused a small smile to emerge onto his face. He covered his mouth with his scarf and enjoyed the warmth of his breath against his almost-numb face. "If coming home without a scratch guarantees a night with you, then I'll be sure to return gleaming."

He heard a huff come from Ichigo's lips, and watched her brows furrow in protest. He was being so ignorant! Why couldn't he just be serious for once?

Without wasting any more time, Kisshu wrapped his hand around hers and pulled her closer. Gently pressing his lips on her forehead, Kisshu squeezed her hand in reassurance. Not for Ichigo's sake, but for himself. He knew the reality of it. He was going to be away a long time, and coming home safely was impossible, if he made it home at all. But he would never tell Ichigo that, she put so much faith in him that he even thought there might be a way out.

He pulled himself away and whispered his last goodbye, heart aching. Ichigo watched him walk further and further away from her and she called out desperately, "Kisshu, I-I…lov-

"Tell me everything when I return, Kitten, if I can…" He mumbled the last bit to himself, pulled his scarf over his nose again, and trudged forward, knowing that return, if it was even possible, was going to be complicated.

*Aoyama died when he defeated Deep Blue (in other words, he killed himself, so why would he have lived..? xD)
Taruto and Pai also died during the battle, just to clarify.

Ah~ Thank you so much for reading! I hope you all liked it. Reviews would be greatly appreciated!