AN: I know but I want to share this and gather some opinion about this plot. Not yet sure if I will post the other chapters but I have them ready in my PC. I've always been curious about what would happen if this will be the kind of Harry that will reach Hogwarts? Though, I've kind of made him into a roundabout person. OOC, I know, but he has grown up in a different environment so...
#Warning: OOC!Harry, minor!AU, and there will be oc's but I have borrowed some characters from other Anime. But keep in mind that this is strictly a HPxBleachcrossover only. And Harry will go to England by the time of OotP. So you know the timeline much properly in this fic.
Ages: Daisuke, An, Harry - 13; Kaito, Ichigo and Co. - 15, Karin, Yuzu - 11
An old couple paused as they heard muffled sobs and whimpers from near the dumpsters in the dark alley.
The frail woman looked at her husband in concern as they approached the source of the noise. The old man cursed loudly as he stared at the small boy curled around empty cardboard boxes beside the dumpster. Bruises and cuts were visible on the tiny and skinny arms while the child shivered in the cold, the flush stood out in the pale cheeks while his eyes were tightly shut closed. The man cautiously approached the boy and pressed a hand on his forehead, ignoring the flinch that followed.
"He has a fever," He stated hoarsely, eyes narrowing at the despicable state of the child. Only monsters would be responsible for this.
The woman slowly approached as well as her wizened eyes grew wide with horror.
"Who would do such a thing?" She gasped as she looked at the ill boy with concern, noting that he was dressed in nothing but thin oversized clothes.
"I don't know," The man replied darkly. "But I wouldn't call them humans," He spat out angrily and gently scooped up the boy.
Despite the old age, he could still carry the child especially if he was lighter than most his age, signalling a great sign of malnutrition and neglect. He grimaced as he remembered his grandkids in another country and wondered who would treat any child like this.
"Where are you taking him?" His wife asked quietly as she walked beside him.
"Kurosaki Clinic," He answered instantly. "Isshin-san has children of his own. He may be more suited for this."
And maybe, a new home for the boy too because they could and would certainly not return him to his previous guardians.
"Oi, Eiji, wake up!"
A knock on his door resounded loudly, the owner of the voice pounding on it noisily.
He brought the pillow on his head to muffle the noise to no avail. If anything, his lack of response seemed to motivate the pounding into deafening degrees. Then it stopped for a minute and he almost wandered back to dreamland, full of screens and wires–
"Fine, just sleep in like you want. I'm going to school."
He heard his older brother's annoyed words despite the stifled sound caused by his pillow.
Blearily, he opened his eyes and sleepily glanced at his digital clock.
The numbers glowed clearly, 8:09, and he almost closed his eyes to go back to slumber when they snapped open and focused on the clock more intently. He hadn't misread the numbers and belatedly, his mind told him that classes would be starting at 8:30.
For a moment, he just stared.
Then the next thing he knew, he was almost soaring in his room speedily. He tossed his uniform on the bed along with his goggles and gloves, hurling his gadgets on his bag as he did so.
"Damn it, nii-san!" He cursed loudly. "Why didn't you wake me up sooner? I'm late for school!"
Even with the black curtains blanketing his room in darkness, he had no difficulty moving around as the screen of one of his laptops on his desk provided enough light to manoeuvre in his messy room.
Besides, no matter how many times he cursed his older brother, this wasn't a new occurrence.
After somehow managing to fit himself in his uniform and finishing brushing his teeth, he quickly strapped his large blue goggles above his head and put on his black gloves. He put his laptop inside the charmed bag he had on him and calmly deposited another batch of trinkets inside. No one would suspect of his small backpack to contain several of his 'electros' or as he liked to call his beloveds.
His green eyes strayed to his digital clock, 8:24, and six minutes to make his way to school and somehow get into the classroom before the bell rang. A 100% possibility of him being already late for his class. Fantastic.
Frowning, he burst out of his room like a man–or in his case, a boy–possessed as he practically flew down the stairs.
He shouldered his backpack as he brought out his Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) and sifted through his schedule hurriedly, his eyes taking all the words at once.
"Eiji-nii, are you going to be here for dinner?" Yuzu asked as she looked at him over her shoulder.
At his younger sister's inquiry, he carefully double-checked his schedule once again just to be sure and smiled at her in affirmative.
"I don't seem to have any classes by that time. I'll be present for dinner," He promised as he picked up a piece of toast from the plate on the table, idly munching on it. He grinned as he ruffled Karin's hair on the way out, ignoring her baleful glare expertly like so many times.
It seemed that the old man was out somewhere. Weird, usually, he would be pestering Eiji to at least say goodbye to dear old 'papa'. As if.
"Take care, Eiji-nii!" Yuzu called out as he put on his shoes and grabbed his skateboard by the door.
He smiled as he waved at his cheerful sister.
As he got out of the door, he was surprised to see his older brother waiting for him. Ichigo sent him a disgruntled stare before turning around and started walking away. Eiji grinned as he caught up to the older boy–only by two years, then only one summer and another year, he'd be out of the damn middle school–gliding in his skateboard. Like his brother, he had short but dark hair that spiked out rather messily and he had green eyes instead of the warm brown that was Ichigo's.
But he was satisfied with that, as much as he idolised his older brother, it wouldn't do to have a brother-complex like how sweet Yuzu-chan was starting to develop.
"We're late," Ichigo scowled as he glared half-heartedly at the shorter boy.
Eiji hummed as he continued to glide in his skateboard but his eyes were glued to the screen of his PDA.
"You should have woken me up, preferably earlier, like responsible brothers do." He commented absentmindedly as he noted that he would be finishing his Advance Technical Exam (ATE) for Charms later in the afternoon. Thankfully, he could easily catch up to his afternoon subjects back in middle school.
Ichigo scoffed in annoyance.
"If you actually put some effort into waking up early, then we can save ourselves from the trouble." His scowled deepened as he realized that Eiji was too immersed in his PDA to really pay attention to him.
Feeling more irritable, the orange haired teen plucked the device out of his brother's hands.
"Hey! What's the big idea?" Eiji demanded as he glared up at Ichigo.
"You should watch where you're going, brat," He remarked dryly and as if to prove his point, the wheels of Eiji's skateboard stumbled over a bump that had the younger boy almost sprawling on the pavement if it weren't for his quick reflexes to redirect his skateboard at the last second.
Grumbling under his breath in displeasure, he calmly pocketed the PDA that Ichigo had handed back to him.
The gates of Mashiba Middle School came to view and Eiji resigned himself to another torturous day in school–hopefully, without detention (which had 58% validity). Flipping his skateboard and holding it between his right arm and waist, he entered the gates and sent a lazy wave back at his older brother who just nodded at him.
Suddenly, he remembered the several 'trinkets' he had installed in school and he grinned rather mischievously.
More blackmail material and information. If he was lucky today, he could hack more into the school system, get away with it, again, and find out who were the teachers that he needed to have blackmail on.
The joys of technology. They made life sweeter.
"Oi, Ichigo, why the hell are you late again?" Keigo hissed from the seat beside him.
He grunted as he leaned back on his chair.
"Eiji decided to sleep in like usual," He frowned as he remembered the project that his brother had been working on last night for his 'Charms' class to finally take the necessary test to graduate from the subject. So naturally, he let the boy sleep in. Just this once since their father would be throwing a ruckus to wake them up the following day.
But even then, his brother had the tendency to sleep like a log and had managed to somehow booby-trap his door to prevent Kurosaki Isshin from barging in unnecessarily.
If only the brat would do the same to his door, then he'd achieve more peace in the morning.
"Eh?" Keigo raised both eyebrows. "It's that techno-geek again?" He asked curiously, though he had to recoil back from Ichigo's glower.
"Stop calling him that," He scowled, remembering how his brother was previously bullied due to that nefarious nickname.
The brunette raised his hands in placation.
"Hey! I meant no offense!" He hastily apologized with a nervous smile. "So stop glaring molten lavas at me!" He finally whined as he pouted.
"You should know better than to insult one of Ichigo's siblings, Asano-san." Mizuiro smiled from the other side of the orange haired teen.
Keigo glared at the dark haired teen.
"I wasn't insulting him!" He argued indignantly. "But it's true, Ichigo's little brother is good with technology!" He stated almost proudly, as if he was the brother of the one being praised. Ichigo just face-palmed and sent Mizuiro a subtle exasperated look.
"Is there something you'd like to share, Asano-kun?" A voice interrupted and the three teens straightened as they found themselves under Ochi-sensei's sharp gaze.
"N-Nothing!" Keigo stammered nervously as the teacher nodded before going back to her lessons.
Mizuiro then levelled his watch at Keigo's nervous but rather comical face, emitting a quiet clicking sound. Ichigo eyed the almost unnoticeable lens by the edge of the watch and suddenly had an idea what his friend was up to. It was a pity that Chad was currently situated at the back. He didn't want to deal with this.
"Give my thanks to Eiji-kun, Ichigo, this has really come in handy." Mizuiro commented and Ichigo's suspicions were confirmed, only his brother would design something like that.
As class progressed, the orange haired teen ignored the way his classmate levelled his watch in Orihime's direction. On her chest, to be exact.
Then he would scold Eiji about giving unnecessary gifts to perverted teenagers–namely, Mizuiro and Keigo.
"So this is where you've been hiding all this time?" An exasperated voice reached Eiji's ears but he didn't move, already knowing that it was his best friend who came looking for him now at lunch time. And found him, at the rooftop.
The other boy was taller than Eiji by a good one or two inches, red hair that seemed to spike worse than the other boy's, and ruby eyes that radiated warmth and friendliness to other people. In fact, he was the only one who never criticized Eiji about his 'geek-side' and was a fellow wizard-student in this muggle middle school.
Niwa Daisuke sighed as he settled himself beside the dark haired boy whose eyes had yet to leave the laptop's screen. He looked on curiously as the screen was divided into eight different little screens that showed different locations. He knew that the one by the upper left corner was the Principal's office and beside it was their classroom.
This was really nothing new since Eiji had his own surveillance even back in the Karakura Magical Institution.
But what slightly startled him was how keen Eiji was on keeping a sharp eye on Yamato-sensei–the English teacher for Eiji's class. The man had it in for Eiji since even with random absences and a rather mischievous attitude, his friend had always been fluent in English. And the man never liked to be proven wrong especially when he had readily labelled students as idiots and dunces, only to be proven incorrect in his assessment.
But his friend just ignored the man and never even gave any interest to the insults that was hurled his way.
So he wondered what changed.
As if reading Daisuke's mind, Eiji's eyes narrowed darkly at the man on the third little screen who was flirting–and failing miserably–to one of the co-teachers.
"He called nii-san a worthless hoodlum in front of the class which was completely unacceptable," He stated rather distractedly as he started typing on his laptop, already moving on to record the shameless harassing that the man was committing.
"And?" Daisuke prompted as Eiji took out a green apple flavoured lollipop and sucked on it absentmindedly.
"I hacked into the school system and found his files." Eiji answered nonchalantly as if hacking into a private system of any organization–especially a school–was normal. "Did you know that he used to be atrocious in English? He took a three-year course of language lessons just to get to the fluency he had today, which was simply awful with his nasally accent." He commented with a frown, words slightly muffled by the sweet treat in his mouth.
There's a 18% possibility of the man using faked documents to get to the teaching profession, a 34% possibility of him actually having been good at the subject he taught (which was still questionable), a 40% possibility that he really did have the necessary credibility (even if it took the man longer years), and a 8% chance that he cheated his way in one way or another. Though, Eiji didn't speak of the statistics out loud since according to his classmates, it made him more 'geeky' which he had wanted to avoid.
The redhead sighed, too used to even be shocked.
"Just be careful," Daisuke reminded even if it always went in one ear and out the other ear. "And have you already finished that project for our Charm's examination later?" He inquired curiously as Eiji paused and stared at him with bright green eyes.
"Fantastic." Eiji smiled widely, his most favorite word having escaped his lips. "They won't be disappointed in placing us for graduating class in that subject, I guarantee that." His eyes were fierce with determination as he said this.
It was a pair project to showcase a unique and grand but useful way of using Charms and Daisuke had been the one who had given the idea for what to do. Eiji had been the planner and had developed it into a more concrete draft. The redhead had been the one who started and shaped it but Eiji had been the one who had really moulded it and added the last touches for it to gain the required result. And it was fantastically amazing, in Eiji's opinion.
"I know," The redhead was equally excited as his best friend.
Then as Eiji's eyes wandered back to the screen, they lit up in an almost unholy glee.
Eiji simply grinned.
Yuzu turned around just to see Eiji bouncing into their house, Daisuke not far behind him.
"Eiji-nii, you made it for din–" She was cut off as her older brother swept her off her feet in a bear hug as he twirled them around, laughing loudly. Even Daisuke was sporting a wide grin as his ruby eyes watched the siblings.
Karin just reached the end of the stairs and saw her brother smiling happily with a squealing Yuzu in his embrace.
Her dark eyes reluctantly shifted to Daisuke.
"I take it that you passed?" She inquired quietly, not able to shake off the tiny blush on her cheeks as the redhead beamed at her merrily.
"With flying colors!" Daisuke was only too happy to share.
Then before the redhead could go to details how their project was met with complete amazement, Isshin barged into the house enthusiastically from the clinic, having heard Eiji's rather obnoxious excitement even from there.
"Did I hear you right?" He asked loudly with a booming voice. "My sweet Eiji-chan passed the test!"
Eiji let go of Yuzu and frowned at their father.
"Don't label me with that dreadful nickname, oyaji." He stated flatly, annoyed at being addressed like he was still seven years old, before it evaporated as he remembered why he was so happy in the first place. "And we ranked the highest in their records, so yes, we aced the test completely!" Eiji grinned as he slung an arm over his best friend's shoulders, feeling absolutely elated at their accomplishment after two months of extensive work.
Eyeing the two beaming boys, Isshin clapped his hands excitedly.
"This calls for a celebration!" He pumped his fist in the air determinedly, his voice so loud that the children had no doubt that the neighbors would not have a hard time hearing the man.
"Stop being so boisterous!" Eiji scolded as he frowned at the man, even though it fell almost straightaway from the overflowing feelings of accomplishment.
"The whole neighborhood doesn't need to hear it," Karin added patronizingly, levelling a hard look at the man.
"It's Daisuke-nii and Eiji-nii's special day, Tou-chan!" Even Yuzu gave their father a pleading look, silently asking him to behave while Isshin's lower lip trembled as he eyed the stern gazes of his children, with Daisuke only watching nervously.
Isshin then run wildly to the large portrait of a beautiful woman that hung by their living room.
"Oh, Masaki-chan! Our children don't love their papa anymore! How cruel of them!" The man cried a river of tears as he hugged the portrait of his beloved wife. Suddenly, he couldn't get any sound past his lips and was hanging upside down by his ankles. He saw Eiji exasperatedly waving his wand, levitating Isshin onto the couch.
"Was that really necessary, Eiji?" Daisuke asked dryly.
Eiji just sighed as he looked at the struggling man that he had magically glued to the couch with a 'Silencio' firmly placed on him.
"Yes, absolutely needed," The dark haired boy found himself answering wryly.
Seven year old Kurosaki Eiji stared at the goblins with wide eyes.
Then he gazed back at the warm smile on Miyazaki-san's face as she gently pushed him forward. He warily approached the amused creature and stood a meter away from it. Then Eiji bowed at waist level in a rare show of respect that he never did for anyone saved for his mother, Miyazaki-san (the Institution's Headmistress), Nakajita-sensei, and Isshin on seldom occasions when the man wasn't very hyper.
"Rise, young one," The gravelly voice of the goblin commanded softly.
Eiji did so slowly, uncertainly.
"Now, why have you come to grace our palace? Miyazaki Tsubaki had ascertained us that your intentions didn't necessarily relate to any gold." The goblin stated quietly but his eyes were already gleaming knowingly and Eiji felt annoyed at being played at.
"I-I want to change my name," He stated silently, but clearly edged with resolute determination. "Not just legally but also magically! Miyazaki-san told me that you could do that so my magic would acknowledge me solely with it."
"We could," The goblin hedged but the slight triumph in his eyes gave away the true answer. "It will take place tomorrow and be sure to remember the name that you wanted. This can only be performed once so choose what you want to be identified with very wisely." The goblin advised seriously, his eyes narrowing.
But the boy already knew what he wanted.
"Thank you," He gave another bow before he let himself be pulled away by Miyazaki-san.
"That's wasn't so hard, was it?" The woman stated gently, an amused sort of smile on her lips, remembering his extreme reluctance to come to this place.
Eiji just sulked and said nothing else.
By tomorrow, Harry Potter would be no more as Kurosaki Eiji was born. And his name in the upcoming first years in Hogwarts would cease to exist.
Ichigo blinked as he eyed the huge meal prepared at the dining table.
He noted that his brother's best friend, Daisuke, was there as well and his father was sulkily eating his meal–he raised an eyebrow in surprise–in silence. He dropped his bag off on the couch and sat rather unceremoniously on one of the chairs. He didn't need to ask to know that his brother and redheaded friend had passed the exam. Even if he was still pissed off at those skaters who knocked off the vase of flowers for the girl's ghost, he forcefully let it simmer away in order to let his younger brother enjoy this day.
"Congrats," He simply said to Eiji and offered a polite nod to Daisuke who returned it.
"Thank you," Eiji smiled as he rubbed the back of his neck almost nervously. "I wouldn't be able to accomplish it without Dai's help, of course!" He grinned at the redhead who blushed but returned the grin back.
"And I saw one of the teachers in your school being carted away in a police car on my way home," Ichigo suddenly commented, noticing how the two younger boys' straightened unconsciously and eyed Eiji's innocent smile suspiciously.
Yuzu gasped while Karin's brows furrowed in question.
Daisuke suddenly had a calm expression while Eiji just tilted his head.
"Oh, really?" Eiji asked in what seemed to be curiosity but his older brother had already caught the knowing gleam of his green eyes. "Tell me something about his appearance, maybe I'll recognize him." The dark haired boy adjusted his large goggles almost subconsciously as he stared at Ichigo.
"Bloated man with a goatee, gray eyes, bald, and a unique set of golden rings on his left hand." Ichigo nonchalantly described as he could, eyes sharply trained on his younger brother's expression. Eiji had developed that trait on him, since the boy was reckless and rather unpredictable. Ichigo was the one responsible about the boy first and foremost (just like with his sisters) since Isshin tended to let his children have a sense of independence as they grew up.
Eiji then shrugged as he turned back to his meal.
"Can't recall him," The dark haired boy carelessly answered.
Then, Eiji brought out his PDA and sifted through it while eating.
"Tsk, some anonymous person just so conveniently produced a recording copy when the man was caught in the act," Ichigo snapped sarcastically, stabbing his food with his chopsticks moodily. He just knew that Eiji had that been person, he just knew it.
"Then someone should be grateful to him, ne, Dai?" Eiji raised an eyebrow as he smiled at the redhead who stared back with intrigue.
"That's good than no evidence at all," Daisuke nodded with an encouraging smile.
Ichigo's eyebrow twitched, already having his suspicions subtly confirmed by his brother and Daisuke without really revealing anything to the twins and Isshin.
"Hey, oyaji, I'll be staying at Dai's house tonight," Eiji stated nonchalantly, having had sleepovers before. "We'll be commencing our 'weapons' project." He stated with a grin at the wide eyes of his father. Despite the Silencio still placed on him, Isshin managed to convey his eagerness through sparkly eyes.
"Actually," Daisuke intervened before his friend conveniently forgot the necessary details. "We started it a month ago in collaboration with our Charm's project. We'll be going out tonight to do some 'field-testing' at the outskirts." He stated carefully, his ruby eyes serious as he stared into the brown eyes of the Kurosaki patriarch, ignoring Eiji's alarmed look. When he saw that Isshin wanted to say something, Daisuke brought out his wand and helpfully removed the silencing spell.
"What do you mean by weapons and field-testing?" Ichigo asked suspiciously, ignoring the way Eiji had effectively changed the subject from before.
"Oh, nothing you should worry about," Yet, was left unsaid as Eiji waved it off, evidently trying to appear nonchalant.
"I won't let you do this until you have appropriate supervision," Surprisingly, the one who stated this grimly was Isshin as he stared at his younger son with reprimanding eyes. "Eiji, you know I only allowed this because of Miyazaki-san's request, but I won't let it go this far unless you have someone like Yoruichi watching you." The other Kurosaki children looked surprised at their father's sudden stern attitude while Daisuke looked slightly guilty.
Ichigo narrowed his eyes.
"Hey! What are you talking about?" He demanded as he glared at his brother. "You talk as if it's something dangerous."
"Not really, Ichigo-san," Daisuke placated, a hesitant smile on his lips. "It's just the outcome is… unpredictable." He felt the need to assure the eldest of the Kurosaki siblings since all of them knew that Ichigo could be stubborn and might force them to let him come with Daisuke and Eiji. The orange haired teen had done so before when they went on their expeditions, like smuggling a baby hippogriff two years ago.
"That talking feline again?" Eiji inquired incredulously, ignoring his older brother.
For some reason, Isshin seemed incredibly amused by his son's question.
"Yes, you'll have Yoruichi, the talking cat, with you if you're to go with that trip of yours," Isshin stated with a firm look, a grim frown on his. "That or you won't be going at all."
Eiji sighed in resignation.
"Fine," He stated in defeat and he should've known that Daisuke would have spilled the beans one way or another. "But only the talking feline and no one else." He crossed his arms over his chest as he sent a determined look at his father.
"Please tell me it's nothing dangerous, Eiji-nii," Yuzu looked imploringly at the dark haired boy.
Karin just sent the youngest male Kurosaki a demanding stare.
"No, of course not," Eiji waved it off with a sheepish smile. "It's just oyaji wanting to take precautions, even if we could manage by ourselves, really,"
Daisuke sighed, knowing how his friend could be obvious sometimes.
"Then maybe I'll–" Ichigo started to say to the alarm and trepidation of the two younger boys but Isshin just chucked a bowl of rice at the orange haired teen, even if Ichigo managed to dodge at the last possible second.
"No, Yoruichi's already going, you will stay here with us, dear son of mine." Even with the wide taunting grin on Isshin's face, his eyes conveyed that there would be no room for arguments.
"But we don't know what the heck those two are up to–" Ichigo's eyebrow twitched as he glared at the man.
Isshin raised an eyebrow.
"Correction, you don't know what they're up to but I do, and that's enough permission,"
From the words of Isshin and the darkening of Ichigo's expression, it was extremely obvious that it was the part Ichigo was practically stewing on. The orange haired teen glowered at the man before he abruptly stood up and stalked to the stairs up to his room, confused and frustrated. Not noticing the guilty looks his brother was sending him. Eiji was a reckless individual who charged into things rashly either to help other people or for the sake of curiosity, science, and technology. So he had the right to worry, if he said so himself.
He couldn't understand why Isshin was preventing him from watching over his brother when he had done so before. Like the last time that Eiji had tried 'air-surfing', or another term for standing on a broomstick while flying.
That incident had Ichigo hiding the broom out of his brother's reach for a month until he had pulled out a promise from the boy to never pull that stunt again.
As he fumed within the isolation of his room, after a few hours, a short dark haired girl came out through the wall. Dressed in the traditional Japanese clothing, a sword by her hip, and would change his life from then on.
Eiji carefully made sure that the mark was at its intended mark.
He froze for a handful of seconds in the same tense and taut position before he placed his finger by the trigger. For a moment, he hesitated but hearing another piercing howl, he pulled the trigger almost rigidly. The supposed loud booming sound was silenced by a carefully crafted spell on the sniper rifle that he and Daisuke had meticulously constructed. The bullet hit its mark by the center of the forehead of the hollow's mask. It slowly crumbled from the hit until the whole monster disintegrated into spirit particles.
Slowly, he set the sniper rifle down against the rough pavement of the rooftop. It was the first time he had handled a gun, especially one almost a meter long as this. Even, though, this hadn't been the first time that he had outright killed a hollow. Yet somehow, the idea of using their invention and actually using it felt incredibly different.
Daisuke had told him that this might happen but Eiji had ignored the statement in favor of the excitement of being finally able to utilize the weapon they had created.
It had been exhilarating at the start. He almost felt what the other kids had termed as 'cool' since he was the 'nerd' and 'geek' from before. Though, he had to thank the old man for the contacts since the jeers had lessened once he got rid of the glasses. But once he realized what the purpose of the contraption and bullet was for, he got the queasy feeling coiling within his stomach as realization set in. When before, it was the panic to get away until he just used any means necessary to get rid of the hollow (spells, mostly). But right now, he had the intention of actually killing it.
Through two years of research, study for Runes and Sealing Magic, and even 'reiatsu', he and Daisuke had created the basic weapon against any spiritual beings. The bullets were powered by the user's reiryōku and the magic within the bullets made any reiryōku-reinforced shield useless against the fatality of it.
"Impressive," A deep baritone voice lightly praised. "Kisuke's invention that had once been alike to yours only dented the masks of the hollows. Whatever spell you ingrained in it made the bullets bypass the effects of any reiryōku or reiatsu defence it encounters. I guess your magic ain't pretty useless after all." Yoruichi deduced as his tail flicked slightly in astonishment, watching Eiji's face regain some color.
"It was mostly Dai's design, with the runes and his assimilation of reiatsu on it." Eiji sheepishly added as he nervously adjusted the large goggles on his head, a habit he hadn't managed to curb since he had been young.
"But it was you who modelled it and integrated the spells to make it really work." Daisuke stated as he plopped down beside the boy and handed him a handkerchief.
Eiji smiled as he accepted the cloth and wiped the sweat that glistened on his forehead.
Yoruichi chuckled in amusement.
"Isshin's right, you still have some modesty left in you," The cat remarked as Eiji blushed in embarrassment. "But it's foolish of you to even think of facing a hollow by yourself. What if the weapon had failed? You two would be dinner," He reprimanded, apparently recalling Isshin's earlier points.
"We can escape," Eiji insisted stubbornly as he sat up. "We're wizards, talking feline, it's not just some fancy name."
The boy was obviously disgruntled at the idea of not being able to protect himself.
Even Daisuke seemed exasperated by this.
"I know that, you stupid boy," Yoruichi brandished his claws threateningly as his golden eyes narrowed. "But your current knowledge of spells is weak against hollows, especially since they are not specifically aimed for the spiritual element and aspect. There's a reason why most wizards leave it to the Shinigami in charge."
Eiji opened his mouth to argue some more (even if he knew that it was useless since with his knowledge, the statistics would have been 20% of them getting out uninjured, 25% of them getting out alive without help, and 55% of them being gravely injured or eaten alive by a hollow) but the sudden insistent beeping of his PDA cut him off. He sighed aloud as he almost lazily brought the device out of his pocket, his eyes barely registering the words.
Before his green eyes widened in alarm.
"We need to proceed back to the house," He started as he abruptly stood up on his feet. "It's under attack and the defences have already been disabled," He grimaced as Daisuke lifted the sniper rifle from the ground.
He should have gotten it upgraded into Version 9.1 instead of demoting it back to 3.7 like Ichigo had forced him to. Apparently, Keigo and Mizuiro had tried to break and sneak in once to get some blackmail material on Ichigo before (at its latest version of 8.0), only, the defence had set upon them like bees to honey and it was a disaster of the century. The old man had managed to acquire the help of an 'Ishida Ryuuken' to treat injuries and an unknown man to alter memories. Needless to say, his family had been obstinate in getting it into a milder level in order to prevent future repercussions such as anything similar to the incident.
Though, Mizuiro and Keigo now had an aversion to Ichigo's place that confused the two to no end.
Yoruichi moved as if he would follow and jumped over the railing when suddenly, he settled down and licked his paw.
"There's no need, a Shinigami's already taking care of it," The cat announced.
Daisuke closed his eyes and proceeded to confirm Yoruichi's statement. Even Eiji felt the pulsing reiatsu of the Shinigami but he still felt uneasy about leaving his family's safety in the hands of an unknown.
"Besides, you're not done with the field-testing yet. That's just one weapon down and three to go," Yoruichi reminded as he inclined his furry head towards the duffel bags resting by the wall, looking inconspicuous enough for anyone to think of it containing any dangerous weapons. "If all of them work to the standards you've set, then you'll be more of a help to them than a hindrance as you are now–nothing but humans with tremendous amounts of reiatsu, even for a wizard."
That seemed to bring Eiji back to the reason why they had been here in the first place.
"Let's finish this," He stated determinedly, as soon as they completed this, then he would be able to help. He wouldn't allow any hollows to harm other souls or people anymore.
Like how one had done to his mother.
When Eiji went home the next day, his mood was somber and a frown was suddenly a constant feature on his face.
Daisuke had been equally solemn as the redhead had said nothing while they had gone to his house and slept with troubled minds. It was a good thing that Daisuke's parents (from the famous Niwa Clan) were always busy with the magical law enforcing of the Japanese Community to really be at their muggle house. Daisuke was an only child, the Niwa Heir, and preferred his independence and freedom more than anything else, and chose to hold on to the house near their middle school.
Eiji always marvelled at the strange but welcomed way of how Daisuke always seemed to know how to handle Eiji. During elementary, he had always been the 'techno-geek' or the 'living robot' that was so nicely named by his jeering classmates back then. He had no friends before and he only had his PDA and gadgets. Ichigo seemed to be the most worried about that development. And even though he meant well, his older brother's way of dealing with the bullies (or simply, beating the living shit out of them) didn't really do any help to Eiji at all. If any, it made it a lot worse for him during his elementary years that he had even cried to his father's arms one afternoon with the broken remains of his first PDA. Though, that all changed during his last year in that dreaded school level.
Niwa Daisuke had entered Eiji's class.
Unlike him, his redheaded friend was well-liked because of his family's fame (which extended, even to the muggle world) and his rather compassionate personality. The boy was really approachable, good in soccer, had artistic talents in regards to painting, and very friendly. Others only laughed with Daisuke when the redhead showed his clumsy side and the girls thought that Daisuke's almost clueless and ignorant countenance from time to time was both innocent and cute.
Eiji had been somewhat of an introvert in elementary school (since he had grown up having trust issues), not particularly good in any sports unless it was the martial arts that he had started training on, didn't have artistic talents unless he was tinkering with a gadget, and wasn't really that friendly since he was socially-awkward no matter how many times his mother had tried to 'cure' him of it. The guys thought he was creepy with his obsession with electronics and a nerd too since he spouted too much science-related for their brain to really understand. The girls thought he was weird and odd and peculiar and they always avoided him.
Complete opposite of Daisuke. Still, even Eiji didn't know that Daisuke would be his best and only friend (his age). It had been when they had found themselves in the same classes for their Potions Class in the magical community that they discovered that the other was a fellow wizard (though, Eiji should've already guessed it since Niwa wasn't just an everyday name). They had been acquaintances at best then. It wasn't until Eiji had blown up one of his cauldrons in class (he wasn't really paying attention) that he saw why his classmates in elementary school admired Daisuke. The redhead had helped him readily to get out of his own mess and had asked him with concern if he was alright. He then proceeded to bring Eiji to the infirmary.
Eiji didn't know why but he had asked the redhead why he would help someone like Eiji. He was nothing special, unlike Daisuke. Of course, that was until Daisuke ranted about every person's importance in the universe and something along those lines. Eiji didn't even know how it got to the point where Daisuke was admitting his exhaustion about people only liking him for his family's name and the bitterness he felt that no one really tried to befriend 'Daisuke', only wanting to know 'Niwa Daisuke'. Since no one had ever opened up to him before, not even Ichigo, Eiji had listened with rapt attention as if he was listening to his own audios about 'electrical-magnetism'.
That was how it started. In Elementary school, Daisuke suddenly wanted to have lunch with the 'geeky-nerd', Kurosaki Eiji. Of course, Eiji had been initially bewildered and hadn't denied the other boy. He was used to being the center of insults, gossips, or even taunts that he had easily ignored the heated whispers about why would 'Niwa-kun' or 'Niwa-san' want to hang out with the resident nerd. Of course, the thoughtless remarks still stung but Eiji had been also curious not to really feel burned by the hurtful words.
So Eiji let the redhead, thinking that it was just a 'one-time' thing after their other classmates managed to get a hold of Daisuke.
But Daisuke had come the next day. And the day after. And another day after. It had happened so daily and routinely that Eiji had gotten used to it. Not to mention, very awkward at the aspect of being someone's friend. It wasn't until Daisuke had shown his own interest in technology (particularly, Eiji's brand) that really started something mutual on both sides. Before Eiji knew it, they just didn't hang out during lunch hours anymore but also during class sessions (both in magical and muggle) when the instances allowed it, after classes to spend some time in the town's arcade shop, to explore some shops in Sakura District (or the Magic Alley), or in each other's houses.
Isshin had taken to Daisuke like he would to a long lost child. He had tackled the redhead and gushed about 'Eiji-chan's' new friend. To say Eiji was mortified was an understatement. Yuzu-chan had taken an instant shine at the kind and somewhat nervous redhead while Karin-chan, Eiji just knew it, had developed her first crush after learning that Daisuke was one of the school's varsity players for Soccer (though, she would constantly deny it). Ichigo had been more cautious though and it had taken a while before Eiji's older brother really welcomed him – it had to do with some other kids taking advantage of Eiji's advance knowledge in the past.
While for Eiji, it was rare when he saw Daisuke's family – busy as they were. Daisuke hadn't been too thrilled at the knowledge but Eiji understood that there must be something in return for the fame and authority of the Niwa Clan. Emiko-san was just so kind and warm, like her redheaded son, but was always so busy in regulating the Magical Law Enforcement of the Japanese Community that she was rarely home at all. Kosuke-san, whom Eiji had yet to meet, was currently travelling the world to study Alchemy and Curse-Breaking further. And Eiji had also been acquainted with Daiki-jiji once, but the old man was part of the Parliament of the Japanese Mage Clans that he practically lived in the Sovereign House provided by the Japanese Magical Emperor.
And Eiji knew that it was probably lonely for Daisuke to live in a large house by himself.
So he made it a goal as a friend to always invite the redhead to the Kurosaki Household and most of the time, Daisuke spent his time there anyway. Occasionally, Emiko-san would check on Daisuke but she would always thank either Isshin or Eiji for taking care of her son.
That was how they had become best friends and almost inseparable. Though, it was Ichigo who had always looked out after them during their last months in Elementary and initial moments in Middle School after. Eiji knew that his older brother was overprotective (especially after that incident when they were little) but he could always count on Ichigo. But there were times that it bordered on obsessive (Karin's words) that Ichigo could practically read him like an open book.
The older boy had even followed them that one time (though, it was Eiji's fault for acting suspicious anyway) when they had smuggled a baby Hippogriff into Daisuke's house. To say the least, it was only Ichigo's brash thinking that had pulled them out of the would-be-trouble. Mainly, by knocking out the Investigator while they handed 'Chi-chan' (or the hippogriff) to one of their seniors in school to be transported to Australia for safety.
Needless to say, it had been mostly Ichigo who had pulled them out of several troubles or skirmishes due to their (mostly Eiji's) stunts.
But that night after the 'field-testing', Eiji was deeply troubled and he could tell that Daisuke shared the same sentiment. The Shinigami's presence had vanished so suddenly while Ichigo's had become overwhelming that they had trouble reading the spiritual fluctuation – since they weren't as adept at it as Yoruichi, or the talking feline.
He could tell that something was amiss especially how the talking feline had been so insistent that everything was being taken care of. Eiji had his suspicions for a while that Yoruichi wasn't really a product of a magical experiment gone wrong like Miyazaki-san and his father had told him. The talking feline acted too human to have results of only mere heightened intelligence and amplified strength. He might have tried to act oblivious but he was almost 88% certain that he was correct on his postulation.
But Eiji would solve the unknowns tomorrow and would then proceed to apologize to Ichigo for being held back. But he had promised before that he would no longer be a burden.
And he intended to keep it.
Eiji gaped as he eyed the large… hole by the kitchen of their house.
Remembering the situation last night, he instantly headed inside and looked for his family. Daisuke was at the Magical Institute at the moment to settle their licenses and graduation certificates for Charms while he checked on his family. He would skin the talking feline alive if something happened to them, especially to the twins. So it was with extreme relief when he was treated to the sight of Yuzu-chan preparing breakfast in the living room with Karin-chan.
"Yuzu-chan!" He cried out but was hesitant to approach. They are fine, he assured himself firmly despite being so inwardly shaken.
The light brown haired girl looked up with a bright smile.
"Eiji-nii!" She exclaimed happily as she ran to him and enveloped him in a tight hug, which Eiji slowly returned as his heartbeat gradually returned into its normal rhythm.
"W-What happened?" Eiji stumbled over his words lightly as his expression turned solemn.
Karin sighed from her position on the couch.
"A truck crashed into our house by accident," She drawled with a hint of suspicion as her eyes subtly narrowed. "It's really a wonder that none of us have been woken up by the crash." Karin eyed him meaningfully and Eiji understood that his sister believed that there was something amiss.
But he couldn't tell her that it must have been a hollow that had caused the damage since it was clear that they didn't remember anything. Ichigo's probably at school by this moment since it's already past ten in the morning and Nakajita-sensei wouldn't mind if he missed his morning classes in middle school. Or the afternoon ones. Eiji decided to skip today to fix the jammed and no doubt, destroyed, security system that barricaded the walls of their kitchen. He would just attend his evening magic studies with Daisuke later.
He brought out his PDA to contact his best friend when a loud crash made him looked up the stairs. Yuzu just sighed while Karin rolled her eyes and Eiji understood.
His brother must have overslept and if Eiji had to guess, oyaji was having the time of his life waking up Ichigo.
It wasn't until after fifteen minutes later that a glowering and cursing Ichigo stumbled down the stairs. The first thing that the teenager sought out was the twins who had greeted him simultaneously. Eiji saw the relief that reflected in his brother's eyes and wondered what had happened the night before. Because Ichigo's reaction hinted that his brother remembered very well what happened last night.
"Oi, Eiji," Ichigo suddenly spoke, brown eyes intently focused on the dark haired male.
Eiji blinked as he tilted his head.
"Nii-san?" He stated inquiringly, suddenly nervous.
"You didn't run into any trouble?" The orange haired male questioned quite gruffly, a probing expression on his face that was usually reserved for Eiji.
"N-No," Eiji answered a little anxiously, swearing that his heart had just skipped a bit. Did his brother suspect anything? "I didn't run into any trouble but… the same couldn't be said for you and the house though," He stated wryly, his grin feeling a little strained and out of place since all he wanted to do was rant out how worried he had been. But that would give away that he had known and Eiji wasn't sure if his older brother would understand so early on.
"Tch, it's just an accident," Ichigo grouched but his eyes told Eiji that the teen had been afraid and it had not been an accident at all.
Eiji didn't know if it was because Ichigo was always so easy to read like usual or his brother was purposefully telling him the unvoiced details or he had just gotten so good at deciphering his older brother's unspoken words. But nevertheless, Eiji understood and he didn't know what to really do or say or anything.
"An accident," Eiji found himself repeating listlessly.
"Oi, oi, why is Eiji-chan not at school?" A voice suddenly piped in and their eyes shifted to Isshin who suddenly appeared and now had his youngest son in a headlock.
"Let go, oyaji!" The boy demanded irritably but there was no real heat in his words like other times.
Suddenly, whatever strange communication was ongoing between Ichigo and Eiji had been cut off by their father's interruption. Eiji just managed to push away from Isshin when Ichigo blinked then turned to give his younger brother a disgruntled glare, his gaze reprimanding.
"And who told you that you could skip school?" Ichigo crossed his arms and loomed over Eiji in the typical I-am-your-older-brother-and-you're-in-deep-trouble kind of fashion.
But Eiji just frowned as he approached the nearest wiring by the walls, sparking with mild electric shocks from time to time.
"I'm going to fix the security system," He explained distractedly as he fastened his black gloves, cautiously disentangling the electric device from the slope of the wall. "I should've thought about transportation engines crashing into our house, maybe a C4 unit blaster would be more appropriate in case an aircraft decided that this place's also an appropriate landing mark." He remarked wryly with a hint of sarcasm, not noticing that he had reverted back to his 'techie' talk, or what Yuzu had so fondly dubbed it as.
And more importantly, install one of the weapons that had passed in their 'field-testing' to shoo away hungry hollows from even sniffing by their doors.
"O-Oi! You're not talking about using explosives are you?" Ichigo demanded with a twitch of his eyebrow, wary as he heard the term 'blaster'.
Eiji grinned, just given the opportunity to mess with his brother.
"That is a good idea, ne?" He watched as the orange haired teen paled, though, Eiji meant enforcing a magnetic force shield – 'C4 unit blaster' – by interloping opposite charges to repel anything that expelled mechanical heat. Which were any engines that worked on kinetic force.
"Oh! Fireworks!" Isshin encouraged, clapping his hands childishly as his eyes sparkled.
"Don't give him any ideas!" Ichigo yelled at the man in irritation, raising a trembling fist in warning while Yuzu just giggled at their antics and Karin rolled her eyes.
Eiji smiled, finally relieved that the tension was now gone.
"Well, I am going to fix the system first. Nakajita-sensei will understand," He waved off Ichigo's indignant squawk. "And you should be the one in school, nii-san, don't you have a test in History this afternoon?" Eiji raised an eyebrow patronizingly, having heard his brother cursing about it three days ago.
The orange haired teen glared at him darkly.
"You annoying brat,"
"Eiji, where are you going? I thought you were going to reinstall the security system in your house?" Daisuke's voice resonated from his PDA, his curious face visible through the video-call.
"Oh, I'm on my way to Sakura District. It could wait since An-chan just sent me a message this noon that there's a new release of the Amaterasu 003! The newer type from the 002 version! I bet it's beyond 250 kilometres per hour from the old version! You're still by the institute, right? Meet me at the Mochi-Umi Sweet Shop by the district!" Eiji replied in a rapid pace, shoulders vibrating in his excitement as he relayed about the latest release of his desired broomstick – currently walking through the park.
"Didn't we just stop by that shop yesterday? Aren't you already overdosed with enough sugar?" Daisuke asked exasperatedly but he didn't disagree to meet his friend.
"To celebrate the new release! Oyaji already gave me enough allowance to afford it!" Eiji stated enthusiastically, always cheerful at the idea of one of his favorite hobbies: flying. "Besides, there hadn't been any green-tea mint ice cream yesterday!" The dark haired boy smiled, knowing that it was both his and his best friend's favorite treat.
And he knew that he had said the right thing, judging by the permanent quirk in Daisuke's lips through the screen.
"Alright, I give, I'll be there." Daisuke responded amusedly.
"Don't worry, I'm paying this time–" Whatever Eiji was about to say further was abruptly cut off by a loud howling sound. He instantly looked up just to see a hollow with spindly, spider-like legs hovering by him. He tensed immediately, reaching instinctively for his wand by his sleeve before grimacing. Right, magic spells wouldn't work properly on hollows. And he frowned as he realized that he hadn't brought any of his other 'equipment' with him due to his excitement to get to the Magic Alley.
He hadn't sensed this one for some reason.
And Eiji realized with wide eyes that a familiar reiatsu was flooding his surroundings, preventing him from sensing any spiritual being within a one kilometre radius.
"Eiji, what's going on–" Daisuke's alarmed voice asked frantically and Eiji frowned as he brought out his wand anyway.
"Hey, Dai, remember what Kaito-san taught us before?" Eiji questioned distractedly as he waved his wand, a look of pure concentration on his face while rapidly backing away from the prowling hollow.
If the dark haired boy was looking at his PDA, he would have seen the widening of Daisuke's ruby eyes.
"The one that Yagami–" The redhead made a sound of realization. "For Duelling Arts? Are you insane? What if one of the non-magical folk saw you–"
"No choice!" Eiji yelled as he fired the spell on the ground.
And it ate a lot of magic. Fantastic. He would need to be more cautious in place of his excitement. But what in a million fucking chance did he have that a hollow would specifically target him today of all times? When he was on his way to his current dream object, no less! Bad luck was what it was.
"Kagewana, what a pain in the ass spell," Eiji scowled as he felt the drain, watching as the hollow's own shadow tangled it into a mess of dark tentacles. "But I swear that I will thank Kaito-san the next time I see him," He vowed, remembering his senpai in the magical institute by two years (the same age as his brother) who taught him and Daisuke this apprentice level spell, a high-ranking one to pass their secondary degrees in Duelling Arts. Though, they had two more years to go before even thinking of acquiring a license for the subject like with their Charms.
Though, staring as the hollow slowly but surely tore through the shadow tentacles, Eiji got the foreboding feeling that the spell wouldn't hold for too long.
Right, Miyazaki-san had warned him and Daisuke that spells that weren't attuned spiritually usually wouldn't work on spiritual beings. And damn it, he fired another spell – a fire type – and watched as it only did minimal damage at best.
"Eiji! What's happening–"
"Damn it, Dai! Of all the worst timing in the history!" Eiji cursed loudly as he finally gained mobility of his legs and ran. The binding spell would buy him an extra minute or three and that was enough, hopefully, and why was his older brother's spiritual energy flooding the area?
"The weapons are still at my house and Kami, Eiji! Wait for me, alright? Hold on–" Daisuke was fretting but the connection had already been cut off and Eiji might have smiled at his friend's antics if he weren't literally running away from a hollow. And damn, he hated this helplessness more than anything else. But as luck would have it, the hollow was now on his heel and one of the spider-like hollow's flimsy legs managed to grab hold of his ankle and hefted him off the ground upside-down.
This hadn't been the first time that he had gotten so up-close to a hollow. But this was certainly the first time that he had gotten personally close to its salivating mouth.
A voice echoed within him, just like during his childhood days. And Eiji gritted his teeth determinedly as he used and overloaded a cutting spell with magic, didn't even watch as the slimy limb holding him was cut off while the beast howled with rage and pain. Eiji just ran again and vowed to always strap his other equipments and new weapons with him at all times. Damn it, An-chan was going to kill him if she found out about this…
The loud, familiar voice made him stumble from his run and Eiji whipped his head back just to see his brother jump in the air and slash the hollow with an oversized knife-like sword. Sword. And he had hoped that he and Daisuke were mistaken, but given the statistics of 87 percentage, he shouldn't have hoped at all. And he couldn't help but widen his eyes at the black clothing that Ichigo was currently sporting – then remembered the way Miyazaki-san had described them – Shinigami.
And Ichigo was definitely one as Eiji watched the orange haired teen slice the hollow cleanly in half.
Eiji couldn't recall the way his knees shook from the shock of being almost eaten alive and the surge of surprise as his brother hovered over him. Eiji just stared with wide emerald green eyes as Ichigo scowled deeper and crouched in front of him.
"Nii-san, you're…–" Whatever he had tried to say was cut off as a holler made both Kurosakis jump.
"Ichigo!" A feminine voice yelled and Eiji looked around his brother to see a petite dark haired girl running up to Ichigo. "Why did you just suddenly take off, you idiot! You didn't even wait for proper instructions!"
The orange haired teen looked severely ticked.
"Well, I've already told you that my family comes first, midget!" Ichigo replied with aggravation. "And I won't let a hollow bastard harm my brother!"
The girl slapped the teen upside the head with a twitch of her eyebrow.
"Who are you calling midget?" She asked sweetly, a promise of pain in her amethyst eyes before they shifted to the wide-eyed Eiji. "And you have a brother?" She asked with confusion as she tilted her head.
"Didn't I just say that?" Ichigo grumbled as he faced the speechless Eiji once again.
"Nii-san," Eiji finally responded weakly with a touch of exasperation. "Y-You don't have to be rude," He stated quietly, his words lacking the usual reprimanding note. All Eiji could think about was that his brother was a Shinigami. And… it was always Ichigo who took care of things. Even with his weapons, it was his brother who defeated the hollow in the end. It seemed that he always depended on Ichigo and Eiji suddenly remembered why he had tried in the first place.
"What were you doing out here anyway?" The older male demanded as he narrowed his eyes.
"An-chan told me that a latest version of Amaterasu was released," Eiji stated in a subdued voice. "I-I was on my way to the district to check it out," He then forced out a laugh, feeling heavily uncomfortable, ignoring his brother's worried eyes.
"Wait just a minute, Ichigo," The girl suddenly cut off with a serious frown before she looked directly at Eiji. "You can see him? In this form?" She inquired in a soft voice, eyes practically demanding answers.
Eiji paled significantly, he had forgotten about that.
"Am I not supposed to?" He settled for questioning faintly, feeling queasy. A 78% possibility that this girl was the Shinigami last night and he didn't know how to react, really.
"Oi, oi! Don't you dare touch him!" Ichigo growled, positioning himself in front of Eiji.
"We have to–" The girl tried to argue but the orange haired teen just crossed his arms over his chest with a stubborn look.
"No, Rukia, I think modifying my sisters' and old man's memory is enough. Eiji… he can handle it." He insisted with an annoyed expression, as if he had recalled something. While the younger boy didn't know if he should be touched or not by his brother's words. "He can cover for me much easier than you just dumping me on situations unwillingly!" And his brother had to ruin it and Eiji could have gone without hearing those words.
The girl – Rukia – scoffed before she looked back at him. Then her eyes strayed to the wooden object by his hand and her eyes widened almost comically.
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