I do not own Bleach, the characters, or the settings.
First off, I apologize for how long it took me to finish this chapter, but I made it long to make up for it and there is a lemon. My excuses (which you probably don't want to hear) are my little bro coming home from Missouri for a visit and my mom had carpal tunnel surgery on her wrist and I had to be her nurse. Anyway, here it is now. You know how this works, you read and tell me what you think without being mean.
Thank you to all the people who read, reviewed, and favorited the first two chapters!
The next morning results in the thirteenth Captain being extremely fatigued due to his coughing keeping him awake half the night. The chest massage with the ointment only offered him a few hours of uninterrupted sleep and when Jushiro opens his eyes he sees his bearded friend looking down at him as he feels the contrast of Shunsui's warm hands and the cool ointment on his chest again.
"Good morning, handsome." He smiles down at his pale friend as he continues the massage, "You coughed your head off all night. I think it's time to swallow that pride of yours and go see Retsu today."
Jushiro groans at the thought of having to sit in the cold, white rooms of Squad Four while Captain Unohana pokes and prods him, "Do I have to?"
"Yes, you do. You told me you'd go today if you weren't better and you are definitely not better." He leans down and gently kisses Jushiro's frowning mouth before wiping his hands on the already stained bed sheets to remove some of the excess ointment on his skin, "Let's get cleaned up and I'll go with you to Squad Four."
Shunsui stands up before bending over to bring the smaller man into his arms to carry him to the bathroom as the white haired man lets out a sigh, "We can't go to (cough) Squad Four. When I leave here I have to (cough) go check on Kumiko."
"She can be alone for a little while longer." He walks into the bathroom and places Jushiro's naked form into the water he'd already drawn moments before the white haired Captain woke up, "If she can make it all night by herself then she'll be fine."
The brunet pulls the tie from his wavy hair letting it fall around his shoulders before joining his lover in the bath. The two Captains are silent for a moment, but Jushiro eventually speaks up, "But, she's just a (cough) kitten. She's probably (cough) lonely."
Shunsui lathers the soap between his hands and begins washing his lover's body as he speaks, "I thought cats were self sufficient. Isn't that what you told me?"
"Well, yes, but kittens (cough) still need to be looked after." He leans into his bearded friend's touch as the bathing continues, "Even self sufficient creatures (cough) need nurturing once in a while."
The eighth Captain chuckles as he washes the soap from Jushiro's pale skin, "We'll only be gone for an hour or two depending on how busy things are. She'll be fine."
The thirteenth Captain frowns knowing he'd never talk Shunsui into letting him skip the Squad Four visit. He sighs defeated, "I guess so."
The two shinigami finish bathing and get dressed. Shunsui tries to get Jushiro to eat breakfast, but the pale Captain refuses in order to make it to Squad Four and back in a timely manner. Shunsui accepts his lover's decision to skip breakfast considering the white haired man had agreed to go to Squad Four in the first place.
By the time they make it to the Fourth Division, Jushiro is coughing almost continually. Shunsui rubs his friend's back as he leads him into the building. Being no stranger to Squad Four, one of the attendants immediately leads them to one of the exam rooms where they're met shortly by Captain Unohana.
The fourth Captain frowns when she notices how severely her fellow Captain is coughing, "Back again, Captain Ukitake?"
He nods and tries to speak between coughs, "This cough it's (cough)…it's not like…(cough)…"
"Shh." She places her hand on his shoulder to stop his explanation, "Let's get this cough under control first, shall we?" She places her hand on his chest and he soon feels the warm pressure of healing reiatsu flow through his chest.
He takes in a deep breath as she removes her hand, "Thank you."
She gives him a warm smile as she begins her usual exam of his body, "Now, tell me what has you so ill this morning?"
Shunsui stands in the corner of the room out of the way, but watches all the same in his concern for his best friend. Jushiro takes in a few more deep breaths before restarting his explanation, "This cough is different from my usual cough. There's no fluid buildup or blood. In fact, it's a very dry cough and my throat itches and tickles all the time."
Captain Unohana finishes his chest exam and steps back to look the white haired man over once more, "I see and have your eyes itched at all?"
"Yes, quite a bit actually."
She nods in understanding, "When did these symptoms begin?"
The green eyed shinigami thinks for a moment, but finally gives a response, "About two days ago."
"It sounds like an allergy to me, Captain Ukitake." She shines a light in his eyes and makes him open his mouth as she looks at his red throat, "Can you think of anything that may have been introduced into your life that could cause you these allergies?"
The thirteenth Captain suddenly knows exactly what's causing the allergy and one glance at Shunsui tells him the brunet has figured it out too, but Jushiro doesn't want to admit it, "The flowers are blooming in the garden."
"Jushiro, if you don't tell her the truth then I will." Shunsui gives his frowning lover a warning glare, "I know it upsets you, but this is your health."
The thirteenth Captain lets out a frustrated sigh as he turns his gaze back to Captain Unohana, "I found a kitten a few days ago and I brought her home. I've been having these allergies ever since." A pitiful, defeated frown forms on his pale face making Shunsui feel horrible about the whole situation.
"I'm glad you decided to be honest with me." She places her tiny hand on his in an attempt to comfort him, "I'm afraid that with your pre-existing illness you'll have to get rid of your kitten."
Jushiro gasps before his features twist in an expression of despair, "But, aren't there any allergy medicines I could take?"
The raven haired medic frowns as she shakes her head, "I'm sorry, but with the medicine you take for your illness I'm afraid the allergy medication would cause an allergic reaction."
"I can't just throw her out. I'm the only one she has. She depends on me." His gloomy green eyes drift down to his lap as he tries not to make eye contact with the other two Captains, "It's not Kumiko's fault and she shouldn't be punished. She shouldn't have to be all alone."
The brunet finally makes his way to the center of the room to wrap his arms around his depressed lover sitting on the exam table, "There has to be something we can do, Ju. I'll take her."
Retsu lets out a sigh as she once again shakes her head, "I'm afraid that won't do either. The two of you spend so much time together that it wouldn't make much difference which of you kept her." A sympathetic expression appears on her face with her next words, "In fact, I recommend that no one from Squad Eight or Squad Thirteen have her. I also ask that no one from my squad take her due to health and sanitary reasons."
Jushiro buries his face in the pink fabric of Shunsui's kimono to hide his disappointed expression, but his muffled voice can still be heard, "Thank you for helping, Captain Unohana. I'll think of something."
"Of course, I'll let the two of you see yourselves out." She leaves the exam room giving them a chance to talk to each other privately.
Shunsui continues to hold the upset Captain and soon feels warm tears wet the fabric of his kimono and seep through to his skin. The brunet hates to see his lover this upset and doesn't know what to do. He takes in a deep breath and squeezes the weeping man tighter, but before he can speak Jushiro begins talking still hiding his face, "I guess you think it's foolish for me to cry over a kitten I've only had for a few days?"
The brunet lets out a sigh, "I don't think it's foolish. You care about Kumiko." He kisses the top of Jushiro's white head and tries to calm him down, "I never cared much for the little fur ball, but I didn't want this to happen."
"I can't just throw her out, Shun." He lifts his sad, wet face from Shunsui's chest and sniffles a little as he looks at his bearded friend.
The eighth Captain's heart breaks from the sad look on his best friend's face, "You won't throw her out. I promise we'll find someone to take her…okay?"
The pale shinigami wipes his nose and nods, "Okay."
Shunsui uses his fingertips to wipe away some of the tears and helps Jushiro off the exam table, "Let's get you home. She still needs checking on you know."
The thirteenth Captain nods again as he slips his hand into his lover's larger hand. The two Captains leave Squad Four hand in hand and make their way to the Thirteenth Division. The walk to Jushiro's home is a quiet one and Shunsui doesn't pressure him to talk. Both men had their minds racing trying to figure out what they were going to do with Kumiko. They finally make it to the thirteenth Captain's home where Jushiro releases Shunsui's hand in order to unlock the door. Once the door is unlocked and opened both of them stare in shock at the white haired shinigami's living room.
"Kumiko! Why would you do this?!" The room is in total chaos with plants knocked to the ground with their soil spilled across the floor, the furniture is scratched with pieces of cloth and stuffing strewn everywhere, water is spilled, and kitty poop is on the floor. Jushiro turns his green eyes from the mess to Shunsui with a warning gaze, "Do not say one word, Shunsui…not one word."
An amused grin sets on his hairy face, but he does as Jushiro commanded and doesn't say a word. The white haired Soul Reaper walks through the small house seeing destruction in every room. In the bathroom, toilet paper is torn and scattered all over the place and the top of the shampoo bottle has been gnawed on, and kitty poop is on the bathroom floor as well. In his bedroom, the sheets on the futon are a shredded mess, not to mention urinated on.
Jushiro lets out an angry sigh, but the little tuxedo kitten is none the wiser to his anger as she twists around his ankles purring. The brunet can't help himself as he finally comments on the state of his friend's home, "Self sufficient, huh?"
The thirteenth Captain decides he can't punish Kumiko because she didn't know any better and he'd have to say good bye to her soon anyway. He picks Kumiko up and turns to Shunsui, "She was just upset because I left her all alone."
"I'm sad when you leave too, but I don't destroy the place."
Jushiro rolls his green eyes at Shunsui's comment, "But, you're not a cat."
"Maybe, I should be then I might get to see you more often." He felt foolish the minute he said it, but he couldn't take it back now.
"You're jealous…just like I said." He puts the kitten back down on the floor just as Kiyone and Sentaro appear in the doorway.
The two third seat's eyes widen when they see the destruction of their Captain's home. The blonde shinigami is the first to speak, "Captain, what happened in here?!"
Sentaro questions his Captain next, "Were you robbed, Captain?!"
The white haired Captain pinches the bridge of his nose between his thumb and forefinger as he takes in a deep breath and slowly lets it back out, "If the two of you ever listened then my house wouldn't look like a crime scene."
The third seat officers look from their Captain to each other with confused expressions on their faces. The raven haired officer scratches the back of his head before questioning his Captain yet again, "W-what do you mean, Captain?"
"Did the two of you not hear all this chaos going on in here?" He gestures with his hand the entirety of the room, "Why didn't one of you stop this from happening?"
Kiyone and Sentaro are quiet for a few moments trying to recall any orders their Captain may have given them. The petite blonde finds her answer first, "If I recall correctly, Captain you told us not to come in because you were going to prove Captain Kyoraku wrong."
"That's right!" The other third seat joins in, "You told us that cat's could handle being alone."
They nod proudly at remembering their Captain's orders and Shunsui laughs, "The one time they agree with each other and it doesn't even help your case, Ju."
Jushiro lets out an annoyed sound, "I told the two of you not to come in if she was crying, but you could have stopped this."
The raven haired man nods in agreement, "You're absolutely right, Captain. I told Kiyone that we should come and check on things, but she wouldn't hear it."
The blonde woman gasps at being pushed in front of the metaphorical train, "That is not true, Captain! It was my idea to check on things, but Sentaro said he was afraid of kittens."
"That's ridiculous! Captain, you can't believe that, right?! I was gonna check, but…"
The thirteenth Captain holds a pale hand up to stop their tattling, "It doesn't matter now. Just go make yourselves useful elsewhere…without arguing."
They both nod, "Yes, sir!" The two of them flash step away leaving Jushiro, Shunsui, and Kumiko alone in the destroyed room.
The pale shinigami once again feels the soft fur of the kitten as Kumiko begins twirling around his ankles making him frown. Shunsui notices the frown and places a hand on his friend's shoulder, "Let's clean this place up and then we'll sit down and come up with a plan for Kumiko, okay?"
The thirteenth Captain nods and the two men begin cleaning up Jushiro's home. After an hour or so the kitty destroyed home begins to look more like it did before the feline attack. The two Captains sit down with exhausted expressions on their faces. The white haired man sighs once more as he glances at Kumiko watching her sleep peacefully beside his and Shunsui's waraji. He looks away from the napping kitten and gives his brunet lover a saddened look, "What do you suggest? My throat is starting to tickle again."
Before the bearded man can reply to his lover's question they hear a very familiar voice outside the door, "Hey Ukki, are you home?!"
Shunsui gives Jushiro a hopeful look, "Are you thinking what I'm thinking?"
"It's perfect, but what about Zaraki?"
"He'll let that kid have anything if it makes her happy." He looks at the door as the knob begins to jiggle, "This is what we've been waiting for, Ju."
The young, pink haired Squad Eleven Lieutenant manages to open the door and barge in without actually being invited, "Hey Ukki! Hey Shun-Shun! You got any sweets for me?! Byakushi wasn't home."
The white haired Captain smiles at the cute face of Yachiru, "Of course I do, Lieutenant, but don't eat enough to ruin your supper."
"Okay, Ukki." Her smile widens as she follows him to the kitchen to retrieve her candy.
Jushiro hands her a couple of cookies and a few pieces of candy, "There you go." She frowns as she looks down at the small amount and he chuckles softly at her disappointed face, "You may have more once you've eaten that."
"If you say so." Her smile returns as the thirteenth Captain also hands her a small glass of milk.
The two of them return to the living room once again to join Shunsui. Jushiro sits down and motions for the little Lieutenant to do the same, "Have a seat, Lieutenant. I have something to discuss with you."
"Whatever you heard it wasn't me that jumped into Byakki's koi pond naked."
The white haired man gives her a concerned look, but shakes his head, "That's not what I want to discuss. You're not in trouble."
A relieved expression shows on her youthful face as she sits down across from them, "Okay, what we gonna talk about?"
Shunsui butts into the conversation before Jushiro can open his mouth, "How do ya feel about kittens, kid?"
Her eyes widen in excitement, "I love kitties! They're furry and soft and they purr and meow and play and catch fish!" She covers her mouth with her tiny hand to cover her last exclamation, "Not that we would catch fish if I had a kitty."
The pale Captain rejoins the kitten discussion, "How would you like it if I gave you that black and white kitten sleeping by the door?"
Yachiru looks toward the door and spots the kitten she'd missed before. She gulps down the candy she'd been given and makes her way to Kumiko, "You mean I can have this kitty for no reason?" She reaches out and strokes Kumiko's fur making the feline yawn and open her eyes.
Jushiro swallows the lump of anguish forming in his throat, but he knows this is the only way, "If you want her then you can have her."
"But, it's not my birthday or Christmas or any other time when you give presents." She picks the kitten up and snuggles her face into the soft fur, "So, why are you giving her to me, Ukki?"
"I found her outside and I couldn't find her mommy. I brought her here, but she's a little girl kitty and I just thought she'd be happier living with a little girl like you." He gives her a forced smile.
Shunsui sees the hurt in his lover's eyes and tries to help speed up the giving away process, "So, whataya say, kid? Do ya want her or not?"
She looks from the two Captains then back down to Kumiko and finally back at Jushiro where she notices the sad expression on the thirteenth's Captain's face and frowns, "If you want me to have her then why do you look so sad, Ukki? Is this your kitty? Why are you really giving her to me?"
Jushiro lets out a sigh and Shunsui grabs the trembling hand of his lover in his own hand as Jushiro explains why he can't keep the kitten, "She is my kitten, but it turns out that I'm allergic to her and Captain Unohana says I can't keep her. I need someone to help me take care of her which is why I asked you." He gives Yachiru a pleading look, "Will you help me take care of her?"
The eleventh Lieutenant puffs out her chest proudly still clutching the kitten, "Of course I'll help you, Ukki."
"Thank you, Lieutenant. I am so grateful for your help." He stands up and gathers the kitty bed, kitten food, the food/water bowl, and the litter box together, "Sometime when you have help you can have all these things to help take care of her."
"Thanks, Ukki! I'm gonna name her Oreo cause she's black and white just like those tasty cookies Feathers brought back from the Living World for me."
The white haired man nods his agreement, "I think that's a lovely name."
Yachiru cuddles the kitten with a smile on her face and the kitten purrs softly, "Since you're Oreo's daddy you can come visit her if you want to…that is if backwards braid will let you just for a little while." A sympathetic look appears on her face, "I know that if I had to live somewhere else then I would want Kenny to come visit me."
Jushiro smiles at Yachiru's words, "Of course I'll come visit. That's very nice of you to offer."
"Shun-Shun can come visit too since some little girls have two daddies."
The burnet's cheeks tint pink at her statement, "Thanks, kid."
Suddenly, two frantic Squad Eleven members burst into the house breathing hard. The raven haired fifth seat speaks first, "There you are, Lieutenant!"
Ikkaku glares at the pink haired troublemaker, "We've been looking all over the place for you!"
The Lieutenant just shrugs off their concern and points to the 'taking care of a kitten paraphernalia' piled up on the floor, "It's a good thing you two are here. You can help carry this stuff." The Eleventh Squad officers frown, but know better than to argue as they gather the items and follow Yachiru and Oreo out the door.
Jushiro is silent for a long time after Yachiru and the kitten leave the house. Shunsui doesn't say anything and only stands close to his lover with his arm around him as he tries to give the pale man a chance to sort his feelings out. Finally, the brunet opens his mouth to break the uncomfortable silence, "Are you okay, Ju?"
"I will be." He turns to face Shunsui with an awkward smile on his face, "I'll miss Kumiko, but it had to be done. It was for the best."
The thirteenth Captain walks to the kitchen and begins making tea with his bearded lover close behind him, "You did the right thing, Ju. As much as I hate to admit it, you and I are getting too old for stuff like that. Yachiru will be perfect and she'll never tire out playing with Kumiko…Oreo…the kitten."
Jushiro chuckles at Shunsui's indecision on the kitten's name and wraps his arms around the eighth Captain's waist burying his face in his lover's clothes, "You're right, Shun." Shunsui wraps his arms around his friend as the thirteenth Captain begins speaking again, "And, you were right about why I wanted Kumiko to begin with."
The brunet's eyebrows scrunch together in confusion, "Whataya mean?"
Jushiro releases his hold on Shunsui and finishes making his tea before answering, "I was trying to use Kumiko as a way to replace my want for children."
"No, Ju…I shouldn't have said that. I regretted it the minute it came out of my mouth."
The green eyed shinigami pours two cups of tea and hands one to Shunsui, "It's true though." He blows the steam from the cup before taking a sip, "I've always wanted children, but I never had any because I didn't want to pass my illness on to them. Then I found you and the option for children was off the table so I never really thought about it again."
The two men walk to Jushiro's bedroom where they both sit down on the freshly remade futon still sipping their tea. The pale Captain continues speaking once they're settled, "But, it felt nice to be needed in that way. I know Kumiko was a far cry from a baby, but she depended on me for food and shelter and love. I could have pretended she was my little baby…at least to some extent." He looks at Shunsui with an embarrassed, red color painted on his usually pale cheeks, "You think that's stupid, don't you? A cat for a baby is ridiculous even I know that."
Shunsui reaches over and tucks a piece of white hair behind his lover's ear and gives him an understanding look, "It's not stupid, Ju. I think it's real selfless of you to deny yourself the children you wanted so as not to pass your illness on, but don't ever think you aren't needed just because you don't have kids or Kumiko." He gives Jushiro a warm smile and continues, "Your squad needs you. Just think how lost they'd be when you're sick if you had never taught them how to take care of themselves."
Jushiro returns Shunsui's smile as he sets his tea cup down beside the futon, "That's sweet of you to say, but…"
The brunet places his finger over Jushiro's lips to silence him, "Not to mention, I'll always need you." He places his tea cup on the floor as well and cups his lover's face in his tea warmed hands, "There will never be a time when I don't need you."
Shunsui captures Jushiro's lips with his and kisses him softly before pulling away, "You were right about me too ya know. I was jealous and that's stupid." The eighth Captain laughs at his own revelation, "It was just a cat and it's not like you were cheating on me, but I did want you all to myself." He begins untying Jushiro's Captain's uniform with a devious smirk on his face, "I still do want ya all to myself."
An identical smirk forms on the thirteenth Captain's face as Shunsui manages to untie his uniform top and spread it open to reveal his smooth chest, "Well, I'm still waiting for you to throw my legs over your shoulders and pound me into this futon."
The bearded shinigami licks his lips before lowering them down to his lover's exposed nipple and swirling his tongue around the pink flesh eliciting a moan from his best friend, "Mmm, Shunsui…I-I need it…so bad." He lets out a sigh of pleasure as he feels his nipple being nibbled on, but threads his fingers through Shunsui's hair and lifts the torturous mouth away from his hardened nub, "Just do it, Shun. I need you more than ever."
"But, what about…"
Jushiro shakes his head halting Shunsui's words, "I don't need it…just use plenty of lube."
The eighth Captain nods as they both shed their clothes at a frantic pace and once they're both naked Shunsui reaches for the lube located underneath the futon, "Are you sure about this, Ju? No prep or anything?"
I can't wait." He spreads his legs open giving the brunet a very clear view of just how much he can't wait, "Just do me already…please, Shun."
"Whatever you want, love." Shunsui opens the lube and squirts it into his palm. He takes one slicked up finger and circles his lover's twitching hole before slipping that finger deep inside just to make sure Jushiro is lubed as well as himself. He pulls his finger out and quickly slicks his own pulsing, leaking erection with the lube. He lets out a groan and throws the lube to the floor, "I can't wait to be inside you."
A whimper of anticipation escapes the white haired man's lips, "Hurry…I want you inside…I need you inside."
Shunsui's body shivers at the desperate sound in Jushiro's voice. He loved that sound and he loved it so much more knowing that he was the only one to ever make his beautiful lover sound that way. He grabs the thirteenth Captain's ankles and hoists the pale legs of his lover over his broad shoulders as he aligns the head of his cock against the quivering opening of his partner, "You look so delicious right now."
Jushiro locks his green eyes with Shunsui's grey ones as he speaks, "Then devour me."
At hearing those words, Shunsui snaps his hips forward plunging the head of his aching cock into the tight confines of his lover's heated passage and moans loudly as Jushiro's body pulls his cock in a few more inches. The brunet grits his teeth to keep from cumming then and there, "Oh gods, you feel…so much better…than my hand."
The white haired Soul Reaper grips the sheets of the futon tightly as he lifts his hips closer to Shunsui's body to guide a few more inches into himself, "More…I want more."
Shunsui pushes forward until he bottoms out inside his lover's tight, scorching hole. He holds his breath as he waits for Jushiro's velvety walls to stop spasming around his length, "I…I can't wait…(moan) you feel so…so good."
"Give it to me…(groan) give it to me hard."
The eighth Captain needs no more permission from his lover as he pulls almost all the way out and slams back in making the pale Captain cry out in ecstasy as Shunsui pounds his sweet spot on the first try. The brunet knew his friend's body almost as well or better than the thirteenth Captain knew it himself just from the sheer number of times they'd made love and within a matter of minutes he's made his white haired lover a moaning, sweating mess. Shunsui picks up the pace of his thrusts and has Jushiro's thin body almost bent in half as he makes good on his promise to pound him into the futon, "I…(moan) I'm gonna…I'm gonna (groan)…cum soon! Cum…with me, Ju!"
"H-harder…I need it…(sigh) harder!" Tears prick the corners of his eyes from the intense pleasure of his sweet spot being rammed over and over again at such a rough pace. He knows his brunet lover is close by the erratic rhythm of his hips and the shallow panting mixed in with his blissful groans. In order to cum with Shunsui, the white haired man reaches down his body gripping his own dripping cock and quickly pumps himself in time with Shunsui's powerful thrusts.
Shunsui can feel the constant fluttering of Jushiro's slick walls against his cock making him slip closer and closer to his release, "Here it…comes…ah!"
Jushiro feels the warm liquid of Shunsui's release fill him as his own orgasm racks his body causing him to pulse around the thickness inside him. His muscles milk the eighth Captain's cock as he spills his own cum into his hand and onto their chests with a loud cry of completion.
The bearded shinigami pulls out with a wet sound as he flops down beside his exhausted lover on the futon, "You know, you would have made a great parent, Ju."
Jushiro lets out a sated sigh as he snuggles closer to Shunsui's body, "Thanks, but I lost interest in having children when I knew I couldn't have them with you."
Shunsui hugs his white haired friend closer to his body at these words and kisses the top of his head. After several minutes of silence, the eighth Captain speaks again, "You could always get a fish. I'm sure Byakuya wouldn't mind giving you one of his…it'd be one less for Yachiru and Oreo to torture."
Jushiro smiles at Shunsui's comment, "I don't need pets or children as long as I have you. You are all I'll ever need to be happy. I love you."
"I love you more."
As the weeks go by it's been rumored that whenever anyone sees Captain Zaraki his pink haired Lieutenant is on her usual perch on his shoulder, but on her shoulder sits a little black and white kitten. Jushiro assumes the rumors are true due to the amount of cat fur on Zaraki's robes and the hate filled glances he casts the thirteenth Captain at every Captain's meeting.
Thanks for reading and as always love ya!
P.S. I suck at keeping tense...I know this...I apologize.