There was nothing Kyōraku Shunsui hated more than Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. They bored him to death and he felt as if they did nothing for him. What was so wrong with alcohol that his late girlfriend had begged him to give up just days before she passed away?

It wasn't that Shunsui wanted to quit drinking – oh, he'd rather die than willingly stop – but he wanted to honour his girlfriend's last wishes, even if they weren't something he agreed with.

The walks home at night were the worst. His small apartment was located within the city, and in order to get there from his meetings, he had to pass many liquor shops. He wanted so badly to step in through those doors every time he passed them, but he knew his beloved girlfriend would be upset to know that he had fallen back after having made a huge effort.

There wasn't much that made Shunsui feel as if this walk home would be different from any other – he still took the same route, he greeted the usual people on their way home from work, and he still had the same thoughts as he did nearly every other time. In fact, the only reason this time was any different was because when he walked past one of the alleyways that cut straight through the main streets, he heard a small whimper.

Shunsui stopped, worried that there might have been someone hurt in the alleyway. He stayed silent, waiting for the noise to happen again. When it did, Shunsui bit his lip as memories of his girlfriend's passing flashed through his mind.

Silently, the brunet stepped forward into the alley. He was careful, aware of the fact that something bad could be happening in here, but there was no way he could chance leaving someone in need of help behind.

When the whimpers became louder and more urgent, Shunsui could tell that they were cries of pain. He made his way over to where the alleyway split off into a crossroads and peeked around the corner. His eyes widened and he covered his mouth to stifle a gasp at the scene before him.

There was a white-haired male on the ground with a taller and clearly stronger male above him. While the smaller man was naked, the other one's pants were pooled around his knees as he thrust harshly into the man before him. The weaker man's back was on the ground as a strong arm was curled around his waist, supporting his lower body in order for the man's thrusts to become as deep as possible. Blood dripped from the abused opening and down onto the gravel beneath them, letting Shunsui know that this definitely would not be a nice thing to endure.

The red bricks of the alleyway wall were splashed with liquid, and the Kyōraku hoped with all his being that it was not blood. He could see a large gash running down the white-haired man's arm and the blood that raced down the pale skin.

"Little bitch…"

Shunsui's heart stopped at the man's cruel voice. He flinched silently as a hand whacked the white-haired man's face hard enough to force it to the side. He wanted to stop this, but what could he do…?

"Enjoy it… Scream for me… Say my name… Act like the whore you are…!"

Shunsui saw the tears seeping past closed eyelids on the white-haired man's face, but he didn't know what he could do to help; prostitutes were common around these areas and who was he to step in and put an end to someone's way of living?

The brunet took a closer look at the bleeding man. He was deathly pale and very, very skinny. Ribs poked out every which way and his stomach was caved in. His hips jutted out and his limbs had the appearance of skin wrapped tightly around bone. Was he not eating properly? Or was there something more to his appearance?

But what struck Shunsui the most was when the man opened his eyes, all he could see was a stunning green displaying nothing but fear, pain and a hint of anger.

Reluctantly, Shunsui turned on his heel and fled from the alleyway and all the way back home. He entered his bedroom, trying to push the smaller man's face out of his mind, but it was impossible; there was something about that man...

"Nanao-chan…" Shunsui whispered to himself as he glanced at the side of the bed that was once his girlfriend's. "…Nanao-chan, what would you have done if it were you who found them…?"

Shunsui really didn't expect an answer, but the silence still hurt just as much as it did every time. He missed his girlfriend more than anything and the loneliness was unbearable. The people who were close to him had told him he had changed after his girlfriend's death, but he didn't really believe them; the only thing about him that had changed was that he had stopped using drugs and was trying to quit the alcohol because he knew it was ultimately what the girl wanted.

With thoughts of his girlfriend and that white-haired man in his head all night, Shunsui slept fitfully, worse than usual. Something about that man was pulling at him, and he didn't know why.

A/N The actual idea for this story's title came from my good friend Ai Chiyo. When I asked her why she thought of it, I thought her reasoning was amazing. This was her reasoning.

[4:22:19 PM] Ai Chiyo: I imagine that Shunsui will constantly be thinking of Nanao regardless of Ukitake~ He'll be asking her for advice and strength, but expecting anything in returrn is just Wishful Thinking. As for Ukitake's point of view anyone wanting him, being nice to him, being excepted, loved, cherished, it's all Wishful Thinking, but in the end if you wish for it hard enough it can come true~ c: