I love this pairing, one could almost say it's my OTP, it just makes so much sense for Rukia and Renji to be together. This is just a sweet little story about how buying presents for that someone special during Christmas is a pain in the ass, but also how thankful that person can be for the simplest of things.

Renji sat face in his hands, headband pushed up his forehead to where it threaten to fall off completely. Why did it have to be so hard? It was like this every year, Christmas was supposed to be a happy time, but it was one he dreaded. He was lucky enough to be spending this season at the Kuchiki manor with his captain and best friend, but this was marred by his realisation that he had nothing to get Rukia. His gifts for Byakuya mainly revolved around his handmade Admiral Seaweed sculpture, as well as a sale guarantee for his designer cookies at some of the local schools in Rukongai. But Rukia was harder, he could only shower her with so many stuffed animals, Chappy toys and sweets and now that she was a lieutenant, her desires and motivations were changing.

Standing up he paced his borrowed room from wall to wall, she was finally growing up, but what if he couldn't keep up with her? What if she always viewed him as the rebellious young boy she'd grown up with. Pausing at the door he stepped out, intent on wondering the Seireitei for some ideas, or maybe he'd just find some squad mates to get drunk with, really drunk with, because sober, rational thinking wasn't helping.

"Renji, are you going out?" he froze as he slid the door closed, he'd been so distracted thinking about Rukia, he hadn't even noticed she snuck up on him. Turning with a slight smile on his face, the redhead nodded.
"Yeah, just for a little while" Rukia's dark grey eyes stared up at him as if reading his mind and for a frightening, paranoid moment Renji forced his mind blank, just in case she'd obtain a mind reading device from that devil Urahara.
"Will you be back in time for this evening's party? Brother was quite insistent that you attend" Renji groaned inwardly, he'd forgotten about the traditional Kuchiki Christmas Party, an event where all ranked members of the Gotei thirteen would arrive at the manor; drink, eat, be merry and general make a huge mess that the cleaning staff would be attending to for days. If it wasn't Kenpachi breaking walls, or Kurotsuchi blowing things up, it would be Rangiku accidentally flashing the company or Ukitake passing out from excitement. He sighed, he'd just been that busy with his worries with Rukia's present he'd completely forgotten.
"I will be there"

It had not gone well, returning to his room swiftly and donning his best ceremonial kimono, Renji cursed a foul string of words probably never heard of inside the manor before. He'd yet again failed to find anything of worth he could give to Rukia. He'd wondered from store to store, searching high and low for that special something. But there'd been nothing, nothing he could have presented to Rukia and felt as if it showed his affection or even met her form of hobbies or desires. Sighing he paused before walking out to join the party, did he even truly have the patients to deal with a number of drunken Captains and their subordinates? Lifting his head, he pulled the door open and stepped out into the chilly breeze of evening. He could deal with them and would enjoy doing so and besides if things were finally deciding to go his way, he could probably get drunk with Hisagi and Kira just as he'd planned to earlier.

Turning down the decked path into the courtyard, Renji spied Captain Kuchiki and Rukia waiting at the entrance to the courtyard, greeting guests as they arrived. Rukia looked stunning! She always looked beautiful but now, in her custom made kimono, dark hair and eyes stark against the white of the fallen snow and the shadow of the evening, she looked amazing. Not caring if he was staring, Renji took a moment to lean back against the railing and just watch her. The way she moved, bowing slightly to each guest as they shuffled past, her soft mouth moving as she spoke welcome and seasons greetings to them. He had to find something that matched her beauty, her grace and her perfection.

"Are you in love with him?" Jumping suddenly Renji saw Rangiku propped against the railing. Her beautiful yellow and white kimono blending in almost seamlessly with the snow laden ground.
"Excuse me?" Renji asked politely, jumping the railing to meet her on the ground, lips perked into a wicked smiled, she leant in closer, her breath holding the tang of sake.
"Capitan Kuchiki, are you in love with him? Because I mean you could be, but you just never told anybody and that'd be a horrible secret to keep bottled up" she shivered either in cold or at the thought. Renji didn't care, he was simply to stunned.
"No, I am not in love with Captain Kuchiki" he shook his head at her "how drunk are you?" Grinning the blonde swung an arm around his shoulders, forcing him off balance as she leant her entire weight on him.
"Not that drunk! Captain only let me have one or two drinks in the office...hmm maybe it was three." She looked thoughtful for a moment, and suddenly stepped forward taking Renji with her "besides I know you're not in love with Byakuya, you're in love with Rukia, everyone knows that!" Jolting to a stop Renji froze as Rangiku attempted to keep walking, but was anchored back with her arm still around his shoulders.
"Everyone knows?" Rangiku laughed.
"Of course, it's not hard to tell, with the way you follow her around like a little lost puppy, woof woof." She barked laughter at Renji's distraught face, "cheer up buttercup, that's not a bad thing." She gestured around at the gathering crowd "It's like having twenty four of the best wingmen and women in Soul Society, everyone has your back." She paused counting on her fingers "well obviously not everyone. I mean Byakuya surely isn't" Renji winced "and Lieutenant and Captain Kurotsuchi wouldn't care. The Capitan Commander would probably have better things to do. And Captain Hitsugaya likes it better when everyone sticks to their own business." She paused, "there are a few good men and women out there who have got your back." Winking she unslung her arm from his shoulders and wondered over to her captain, practically collapsing on his head as she embraced him in a hug.

Looking around Renji nervously hoped no one else had been privy to their conversation, it was bad enough if Rangiku's assessment was true and everyone already knew but to have that discussion in public... he shivered at the thought, this day was going from bad to worse within seconds.
"Hey Renji, enjoying yourself yet?" Turning slowly Renji recognised the voice and was put at ease, behind him standing at their leisure was Hisagi and Kira, grinning at his two friends, suddenly the world got brighter.
"What'd Rangiku want?" Hisagi asked casually, gazing across the grounds to where she now sat, swaying slightly, singing a gentle lullaby to Hinamori who was sitting with her head resting on on the blonde's shoulder, a wide smile on her features. Renji cringed and shrugged.
"Nothing of importance, just drunk talk"
"I'm going to do it, I'm going to ask her out, we're going to date, it's going to happen" Hisagi suddenly burst out, Kira shook his head at his friend.
"I bet you three drinks you'll pussy out" Rising to his full height, the ninth squad Lieutenant straightened his shoulders and puffed out his chest.
"I'll do it, and I'll do it gracefully and beautifully and she will fawn and faint and it will be glorious" Up ending a bottle of sake, Hisagi stood and strode across the lawn.

Renji looked questioningly at Kira
"Does everyone arrive at this party drunk?" Kira snorted, tossing his head back to shift his blonde bangs from his eyes.
"It's Christmas, almost everyone is in a permanent state of intoxication" Frowning Renji took up his glass and gestured for Kira to pour him a drink.
"I'm feeling a little behind everyone else, make it a double."

The evening progressed with fewer mishaps then Renji would have expected, no walls were broken, no explosions occurred and Ukitake only fainted once and with minimal blood loss. The evening was drawing to an end with the guests slowly taking their leave, while others made preparations to stay. Renji had just helped Lieutenant Ise, wrap a blanket around her Captain who'd somehow comfortably folded himself into the terrace of the manor's roof. On questioning if it was a good idea to leave him up there Nanao had simply shrugged, stating she wasn't paid enough to drag his sorry drunken ass home, to which Captain Kyōraku had giggled in his sleep.

Seeing Nanao off with a wave, Renji bumped into Rukia as she walked back towards her quarters. She smiled up at him, taking his arm, she leant heavily upon it, but with her height, she weighed barely nothing.
"Have you been drinking?" He asked slyly watching her blush under her dark hair.
"Not too much" Renji grinned, it didn't take much for Rukia to get drunk, she seldom drunk at all and with her tiny figure she was a total light weight.
"Renji" she whispered softly as they turned the corner and approached her room. Bending down Renji levelled his gaze with his unrequited lover.
"Yeah?" Her huge eye were watering as she reached up and wrapped her arms around his neck, hugging him tightly.
"I'm so happy Renji, I'm so happy you're here, spending Christmas with brother and I" She tugged him down further. Bending down to accommodate her, Renji let his arms loop around her small waist.
"I'm glad your happy, that's all I want." Hot tears fell from her eyes as she pushed her face into the nook of his neck, breathing in his scent.
"Thank you Renji"

It took him a moment to realise what she was doing, whether it was because he was concerned about her crying, or concerned about Byakuya walking around the corner at any second, the softest of kisses were being showered all over his neck took him by surprise. Tiny teeth nibbled the tender spot above his collarbone and his knees nearly buckled. An opened mouth kiss caused his entire body to tense, with a hint of tongue licking out and teasing the sensitive flesh. He was speechless, there was nothing he could do, but pant quietly as she continued her oral assault. Shifting from soft gentle kisses to a sudden hard bite over a spot she liked then settled down to suck, hard.
He moaned, he hadn't meant to, and immediately felt the rush of blood to his face burning brightly. Hot, wet noises reached his ears as she sucked harder, pulling back gently, she let her teeth score the flesh, leaving perfect indentations around the angry red love bite. Squeezing around his waist once more as he rose to look down at her, she keep her eyes low, as she blushed and dashed into her room, sliding the door quickly shut without saying a word.

Renji forced himself to move, backing away from her door before he did something stupid, like sit there for the entire evening, just so he could wake up there and confirm it wasn't a dream. Pacing down the manor to his own quarters, he ducked inside and collapsed on the bed. Rukia had hugged him, Rukia had kissed him, Rukia had licked his neck and bit down hard enough to mark him. Rolling over he stare at the ceiling, breathing hard, and willing the raging hard on between his legs to go down. She'd been happy, so happy he'd been there that she'd cried, for him. A goofy smiling emerged on his features, Rukia, his Rukia was happy, that was the best Christmas present he could give her.