Graduation Blues

Summary: College is never an easy thing. After struggling through a grueling four years, Ichigo thought he finally had everything he needed to be finished with college. The fact is, he didn't. Who ever heard of a college graduate with a V-Card? – AU. IchiRuki. Lemon.

Disclaimer: I do not own Bleach or any character used in this story. They belong to Tite Kubo, our friend and troll.

"Congratulations, Graduates!"

The stadium erupted with the sounds of joyous screams and the flying of many different kinds of caps. Inside the chaos of the area, a young man with bright orange hair sat, seemingly unfazed by the events. His mind was so far away from this place that even heaven had to look up to find it. Only once his fellow graduates had begun to depart did he finally snap out of daze and head for the exit.

Outside, his family waited to greet him. Yuzu, the girl with light brown hair, and her twin Karin, the girl with dark hair, shouted to their brother as he slowly walked to them. Beside them, their father, Isshin, cried many tears as he held himself back from rushing up to his son.

"Well done, son! You've made Papa proud!" Isshin cried, before being kicked by Karin.

"Shut up, old man! You're ruining the moment! But seriously, good work Ichigo." Karin congratulated, a rare smile on her face.

Yuzu ran up and hugged him. "I'm so proud of you, Ichigo! Let's go out and celebrate!"

"Yeah, that'll be fun," Ichigo said, smiling sadly as he saw them, glancing around for someone that hadn't shown up.

Karin raised an eyebrow at him."What's up? You seemed depressed."

Ichigo chuckled nervously at her bluntness and said, "Nothing. Just getting used to being done, I guess."

"My boy's all grown up now!" Isshin cut in, wrapping an arm around his son, "Now only if you could score a beautiful girlfriend to give me grandbabies, then you'd be perfect—Owww!"

Ichigo grabbed his arm and twisted it behind his back, scowling all the while. "You never change, do you?!" He kicked his father to the ground but the old man just laughed and jumped up.

"Keeping your skills sharp I see! That's my boy! Now let's go eat! Papa's starving!"

"Yeah, let's go!" Karin insisted, walking away with their father.

Yuzu nodded and smiled at Ichigo before running to catch up to them. Ichigo smiled sadly as they got away from him. He looked around again but still couldn't find what he was after. He sighed heavily and stared down at the ground.

"I shouldn't be surprised," he whispered, "I really shouldn't have expected her come."

-48 Hours Prior to Graduation-

"Ichigoooo!" the orange haired man's friend called out before said friends elbow met his nose.

"Give it a rest, Keigo! Do you have to bother me on the last day of finals?" Ichigo griped as his friend picked himself up.

"Oh, you're so mean, Ichigo! I just wanted to congratulate you on surviving the hell of college!" Keigo spun around and struck a dynamic pose. "Now that we're free of this place, it's time to move on to bigger and better things—!"

"You know I'm going to medical school next, right?"

Keigo's world shattered and his body followed. "You never told me that! I thought we both were done!"

"I told you multiple times over the last few years. It's not my fault you forgot." The orange haired man turned to walk away but his friend stopped him.

"Wait! I have something awesome to tell you!" Keigo practically bounded in front of him. "There's a huge graduation party going on tonight in Chad's apartment complex! You know you wanna be there!" He nudged Ichigo whom only scowled at his friend's idiocy.

"Not interested," Ichigo said, moving aside to let Keigo fall on his face. As his friend on the floor cried about being alone at the party, a new voice grabbed his attention.

"Going out for your own graduation might do you some good, Ichigo."

Ichigo spun around to see his fellow graduates and best friends; Uryu, Chad, Orihime and Tatsuki, all of whom glared at him. With a great sigh, he walked up to them and said, "Listen, I just don't want to be hung-over for tomorrow, my family's coming and I'm meeting them. It's not anything personal."

"Are you sure about that?" Chad asked.

"I've never actually seen you go out and party even once, you know." Tatsuki added.

"It's, uh, hard to think that way after four years of you staying home instead of coming out with us," Orihime added, not wanting to be rude.

Uryu walked up to him and said, "Or is something else bothering you? Perhaps it has to do with you holding onto a certain card for dear life—".

"Would you shut up about that?!" Ichigo shouted, grabbing him by the collar, "It has nothing to do with…that." His half-hearted retort cued in everyone, even the dim-witted Keigo who sprung up and pointed furiously at him.

"That's right! You're still a virgin! Oh, man! Do I feel sorry for you!" Keigo laughed foolishly until Ichigo's fist connected with his ribs.

"Like you're one to talk, Keigo! You've only gotten it once, out of pity, from a girl who was drunk enough!" Ichigo pushed him down and glared at him. "So what if I'm still a virgin? It's only because I refuse to lose it to a drunken one night stand. I'm just waiting for the right moment."

"And four years of constant attention from many women just didn't seem right to you?" Uryu chided, pointing to a few girls that happened to be checking them out.

Ichigo scoffed at them and turned away. "Well, I'm sorry that I won't sleep with a girl who's only interested in my appearance. It's called standards!"

"But standards only seem to hold you back!" Tatsuki argued, "Do you really want to be the only one of us who hasn't gotten any action in college?"

Ichigo huffed and turned away, pissed that she had mentioned it.

Uryu and Orihime had been dating since their freshman year so it was no wonder it happened for them. Tatsuki had a few boyfriends come and go but the only serious one got away, taking her virginity. Hell, Chad had a drunken one night stand with a girl he still can't remember clearly, but at least he remembers it happened. Not to mention that fact that everyone saw him leave the party with some out of town girl the night before.

So yeah, Ichigo was the only one still holding onto his V-Card. It's not that he didn't dream about it or want it, he just didn't want it to be with a girl he didn't know. However, now that he was literally only one day from graduation, his self control was slipping and their offer was become more and more enticing.

Could one night of furious sex before graduation really be so horrible? To Ichigo, it was like denying all that he'd resisted for so long and it left him frustrated, both normally and sexually.

A heavy silence hung between all of them before Uryu patted him on the shoulder and said, "You're more than welcome to join us, if you want. We really hope to see you. Take care, Ichigo."

And with that, the group went their separate ways, leaving Ichigo confused and anxious all at the same time. He clenched his first and storm off to his apartment, finally decided that enough was enough.

-36 Hours Prior to Graduation-

"What the hell am I doing here?"

Ichigo sat next to the cooler filled with various beers and liquors, glancing around at all the people at Chad's party. He'd taken great care with his appearance, putting on cologne and dressing in an easy to remove but hot pair of jeans with an open hoodie.

He'd arrived before the party and helped set everything up, much to his friends' surprise. However, after everyone began to arrive, he slowly retreated to the beverage area and slumped against a wall. He didn't move other than to take a drink and no one approached him. Some of the girls who normally hit on him glanced once and turned away, frustrating him further.

Everything about him shouted, "I'm hot and available". The only issue was – his vibe was completely awkward and put everyone off. Sure, he looked amazing but his scowl and foreboding attitude drove away any girl that looked at him. Feeling embarrassed and unimpressed with himself, Ichigo downed his only beer of the night and prepared to leave when something stopped him.

"I should just go home," a strong voice nearby said.

The voice startled him and Ichigo turned to see a beautiful young woman with shoulder length raven hair framing her face and bright violet eyes glaring out at the party goers. The sighed and a stray bang of hair fell between her eyes. She wore a strapless red dress that revealed most of her back. She looked like someone trying get attention and in that dress, it should have worked but the way she fidgeted with the material and glanced around awkwardly gave her the same vibe that Ichigo was currently exuding.

In an instant, Ichigo recognized who the young woman was.

Rukia Kuchiki – heir to the illustrious Kuchiki Family that owned the university.

Actually, Ichigo talked to her several times before, in a few classes they shared. They knew each other by name and he wouldn't deny that at one time he had his eye on her. She was smart, funny, attractive, and single. However, he never found the time to ask her out.

She was way out of his league anyway. She was a transfer student that came to the university only two years ago but quickly became the University Princess. She had many admirers but never seemed to be dating anyone. In public, she had an air of aristocracy about her but Ichigo had seen that it was all a rouse.

Rukia's obviously fake personality in front of her peers bothered him, particularly because he'd see how tough she really was. Every so often, he'd get involved in a street fight and each time, Rukia would yell at him for being irresponsible and forced him to apologize – by beating the crap out of him herself!

In a way, he actually respected her for not actually being the weak little flower that she pretended to be in front of the faculty.

Honestly, he couldn't figure out why Rukia was at a party like this at all. She often protested when people got caught drinking, saying it lowered the image of the university. More than likely, now that she was graduating and her reputation didn't matter as much, she wanted to see how a real party went.

Obviously, she was unimpressed. The same as he was.

From a few feet away, Ichigo saw her sigh in exhaustion before turning his way, making him turn away. As she passed him, he noticed that she was nearly a foot shorter than him, even in heels. He couldn't stop his eyes from wandering down her petite frame when a pair of shining violet irises thrust at his face.

"And just what are you looking at, Ichigo?!" she practically shouted at him in frustration, "If you keep looking down my dress I'll have to show you the underside of my fist."

Ichigo was kind of impressed that she wasn't putting on the good-two-shoes act right now, openly yelling at him for his behavior. He waved her away and crushed his beer before tossing it into the trash.

"Lighten up, Rukia. I just looked down as you passed. It's hard not to when you're so much lower to the ground." Ichigo chided with a scowl. She narrowed her eyes at him and kicked his shin. As he yelped in pain, she grabbed his collar and pulled it down to her level.

"It's only because you're such a freaking giant!"

As she shouted in his face, Ichigo realized how close they were to each other. Her violet eyes shone in the dim light and he found himself entranced for a second. What he'd give to stare into those beautiful orbs as he embedded himself inside her.

Shaking off his delusion, he pushed her back and countered, "W-Whatever! Just let me go and leave me alone." She released him and he turned away, hoping his flushed face wasn't showing in the half light of the room.

She glanced at him accusingly, turned to leave and said, "I'm outta here. This place isn't for me." Before she took a step, however, she whirled around and said, "Hey, are you coming or not?"

Confusion overtook Ichigo as he stared at her. "Why the hell would I be going?"

Rukia groaned and marched back up to him. "Because it's common courtesy. It's late. It's dark. I'm a young woman walking home alone. Isn't it the man's job to walk a girl home? Or has chivalry actually died?"

Ichigo huffed and turned away. "Don't act like we're friends. Just because we're acquaintances and had a few classes together, doesn't mean I'm at your beck-in-call."

Rukia balled her fists and narrowed her eyes as she slowly moved closer to him. Ichigo was stunned when she got so close to his face that he felt her hot breath on his neck.

She leaned in and whispered in his ear, "Look, you're the only person at this party who isn't crazy drunk or looking for an easy lay. You're responsible and that's why I want you to walk with me back to my apartment. Besides, you know how dangerous this area is at night."

Breathing heavily and forcing himself to be calm despite the fact that a beautiful girl was personally asking him to walk her home, Ichigo managed to whisper back, "I still don't see why it needs to be me."

He heard her groan before she replied, "Because I know you won't try anything. You're the only person here that I actually trust to walk me home."

The moment those words left her mouth, she pulled back and stared at him as he tried to hide the furious blush that overcame him. However, he did see her point. A lot of the "popular" guys were hanging around, eyeing her and every other female in the place. Not to mention the crazies like Keigo, who happened to be dancing in the corner with a lamp shade on his head.

After looking at the competition, Ichigo decided that she was probably telling the truth.

"So, what's it going to be?" Rukia demanded, her beautiful violet eyes peering into him.

Even though he felt that he was being tricked into something, Ichigo couldn't deny that it felt great to have her express that much faith in him. They may only be acquaintances but he knew Rukia enough to know when she was lying and when she was giving praise. The funny thing was, he never expected to get that from her. Ever.

Despite his better judgment, he waved his hand and replied, "Fine. But only because it's been crazy around here lately."

In all honesty, he didn't really know that. He lived on campus and she lived in one of the better areas of town. Chad's apartment, where the party was, was rumored to be more dangerous but not to any such degree that people wouldn't have a huge grad party. Either way, Ichigo followed Rukia to the door as she slipped on her coat over her dress, hiding the smooth skin of her back.

Pulling his own coat on, he followed her out without a single word to anyone.

Back inside the party, all of his friends had seen the interaction and laughed silently. Ichigo, going home with the University Princess, Rukia. If they didn't get a juicy story out of this one then their orange haired friend would certainly be considered a failure for the rest of his life!

Ichigo walked next to Rukia in utter silence.

Even after traveling five blocks together, neither of them had said a word. They still had a ways to go and the silence was becoming deafening, at least to Ichigo. He wanted to say something but every time he opened his mouth, it snapped shut again. He looked like a fish out of water, in more ways than one.

Finally, after seven grueling blocks of nothing, he said, "Graduation's tomorrow. You walking?"

Now he wanted to smack himself. All this time and he couldn't come up with any better than to talk about then current events? Dammit, this flirting thing was harder than he thought. But wait, was he trying to flirt with Rukia? Somewhere in the back of his mind, he wanted to believe that, but another part screamed that his chances of actually hooking up with a beauty like her was 1/10 million!

That's why he was surprised when she answered, "Nah, I'm not really one to stand on ceremony."

Ichigo nearly stopped as she actually responded to him but managed to keep walking. "Oh, really? Why's that?" he asked, out of curiosity, "Wouldn't your family want to see you up there, getting that fancy degree you always wanted?"

His tone was mocking and he felt like things were getting back to normal between them when Rukia sighed heavily and replied, "Actually, the only reason I would walk would be because my brother would wish it. And he's not even here for the event. A business meeting came up and it was obviously more important."

"More important?!" Ichigo proclaimed on instinct, earning a glare from Rukia as a response. "I mean, what could be more important than his younger sister's special day? That's not how a brother should act—".

"It's no big deal. He's not my real brother. I was adopted," Rukia informed him, "It happened after my sister, who was married to my brother, passed away. I may be a part of the Kuchiki Family but all that means is that I am responsible for maintaining their reputation at this school."

Ichigo was shocked to hear this but had not time to comment as Rukia continued.

"And as for the 'fancy degree I always wanted', it was never what I wanted to do. My brother thought that the only way to get ahead in life was to work for him after graduation. So, business was all I was allowed to study." She sighed and glanced upward at the night sky, "Everything in my life has been decided for me, even the way I have to appear in public. My opinion doesn't matter, only my family's reputation."

Rukia stopped suddenly and glared fiercely at him. Amazingly, he wasn't fazed by her glare or her attitude. He just kept scowling at her, waiting for her to finish. It was impressive that he didn't flinch or run from her, as so many had done when she opened up about this subject.

"In short, the fact that my brother isn't here is more of a blessing. I don't have to put on an act for the faculty or impress the elders of our family," she turned and Ichigo noticed that they had arrived at her apartment building, "I'll just get to sleep tomorrow. That's more of a reward than a stupid piece of paper that I don't even want. Thanks for walking me home."

Before he'd even realized it, Ichigo found himself outside her apartment. Rukia began walking up the steps to the door and didn't bother to look back at him. Halfway up, Ichigo couldn't stop himself from asking, "So, what do you want to do with your life?"

The question stopped her in an instant. She whirled around to see Ichigo staring at her blankly. He wasn't scowling and he wasn't smiling, but at least he didn't look intimidating anymore. She was even more surprised when he began climbing the stairs after her.

"E-Excuse me?" she managed to force out as he got up to her level.

"If you hate business so much, what do you enjoy doing? There must be something else that you wanted to get a degree in. What was it?" His sudden interest was shocking to her, to say the least.

"W-Well I," she stumbled for the words, "I like to draw. I don't know if I'd want to do it professionally but it's really the only thing that relaxes me." He wasn't sure because it was dark, but Ichigo could have sworn he saw a faint flush in her cheeks. "My brother is a talented artist himself but doesn't draw anymore. Don't get me wrong, I don't draw because of him. I just really like it."

Rukia waited for the laughter that was certain to come but instead she heard, "Drawing, huh? Did you ever take any art classes while you were here?" Again he surprised her with a common but out of character question.

"Okay, who the hell are you and what have you done with the real Ichigo?" she demanded.

"Hey, what's that supposed to mean?!"

She scoffed and replied, "The Ichigo I know is a rude, belligerent, delinquent that pays more attention to himself than anyone else. I mean, you hardly ever leave your room and you sit and brood during class."

"I do not brood during class! And who are you calling rude, you crazy midget!" Ichigo retorted, bearing down at her.

Growling, Rukia shouted, "Hey! I warned you about calling me that!" she kicked him hard in the shin, "And for your information…I tried to take an art class but my brother forbid it!"

"Well why the hell did you listen to him then?" Ichigo shouted back, rubbing his shin, "If it makes you happy, then you should have don' it anyway?!"

"And get the source of my tuition cut off! Now who's the crazy one!"

For some reason, this argument seemed to revitalize both of them and as they came to a break in their insults, both of them felt a great deal of stress fading. Glaring at each other with their teeth grit, the pair pulled away and huffed, each of them folding their arms. After a long silence, Ichigo finally spoke.

"I bet your drawing suck, anyway. If you haven't taken a single class—".

"Oh, yeah! Well why don't you come upstairs to my apartment and I'll prove you wrong!"

Ichigo also turned to her, stunned by the offer. "Y-You're…inviting me up, to your apartment?"

Rukia slowly turned back to him with a frown. "Yeah, I guess I am."

Ichigo couldn't be sure but she seemed to be halfway convincing herself as well. He watched her turn and march up the stairs before unlocking the front door.

Turning back to him, she said, "So, are you coming or not?"

Ichigo stood there for a moment before sighing and following her to the door. "Alright, but let's not go overboard here."

She nodded and led him inside.

The air between them was odd the entire way up the stairs. Ichigo had no idea what to expect but at least Rukia seemed calm about the whole thing. His thoughts wandered back to her lovely body and how smooth it would feel as he caressed her—Dammit Ichigo! Now wasn't the time for that! Or was it?

He'd never been invited up to a girl's apartment before. Did it mean what he thought it meant?! No! Surely not with Rukia…or could that be precisely the reason? No way! Rukia wasn't the kind of girl to sleep around…or at least he thought she wasn't. He shook his head and tried to rid himself of the impure thoughts that invaded his mind.

After all, it was best not to get his hopes up too high, he was just here to see the damn drawings and that was all! They reached a door marked – Kuchiki – and Rukia unlocked it and let him in. It wasn't as lavish as he had expected.

A leather couch sat in the middle of the living area, a flat-screen TV across from it. The kitchen was off to the left, nothing fancy about it either. Off toward the back was a set of doors that presumably led to the individual bedrooms. All in all, it wasn't that much different from any other apartment.

"Do you want a drink or something?" Rukia asked him, tossing her coat aside.

"Uh, yeah. I guess," he answered and she made her way to the kitchen. "By the way, why do you live in such a normal apartment?"

"Normal? What did you expect? You trying to say that I can't have a simple place to eat and sleep while I get my degree?" she shouted from inside the fridge. "Looks like someone's judging too much on appearance. I thought that was my job."

"That's not what I—Urgh, forget it!" he plopped down on the couch and leaned back, groaning.

He closed his eyes but felt something cold against his forehead and they shot open. Rukia pressed a bottle of something to his head and smirked down at him. With a scowl, he grabbed it from her and twisted off the cap without looking at the label. He felt her take a seat next to him as he took a swig.

His eyes bulged as the taste of lemonade hit his tongue but with a kick. He sprang up and saw the label on the bottle: Hard Lemonade.

He cocked an eyebrow at her and said, "You're giving me another drink? Thought you were supposed to be the straight-laced one." He took another swig and heard her chuckled at him.

"Whatever do you mean, Mr. Kurosaki?" she pronounced with fake cheerfulness. "I'm as mild-mannered at they come." She took a huge gulp of her own lemonade and sighed happily afterward.

"I knew the goody-two-shoes bit was just an act," Ichigo said, leaning back into the couch. Again he heard Rukia laugh, but this time it was heartfelt and warm. He looked over to see her happily smiling at the space in front of her, dangling her bottle between her fingers.

"The goody-two-shoes act works on most. But it never fazed you, did it?" she gulped again, "Nope, you always saw through that crap and didn't have a problem telling me how two-faced I was." She smirked at him and added, "That's what I always really liked about you."

Ichigo choked on his lemonade and abruptly turned to her. Rukia burst into laughter again after seeing his flushed face and he scoffed angrily while turning away. This just made her laugh even louder at him as he gripped the bottle tightly, wishing it would break.

"This is what makes you so interesting, Ichigo!" she pointed at him while explaining, "You're not gullible. You're brutally honest. And you turn beat red whenever anyone mentions something personal or private! You make it too easy!"

She took another gulp and finished her bottle, setting it down beside the couch. "I bet you honestly came up where with no expectation other than looking at my drawings, didn't you?" He turned to her and she smirked, "If I had invited any other guy up here for any reason whatsoever, he would have instantly thought, 'I'm getting some tonight!'."

Ichigo could have sworn he felt the glass on the bottle begin to crack as she chuckled at him again. She leaned over the side of the couch and continued.

"But not Ichigo Kurosaki! He thought he was coming up here for picture viewing and that's what he's gonna—", she suddenly stopped as Ichigo slammed the bottle down the table next to the couch and shouted in frustration.

"Is this all a fucking game to you?! Do you invite guys up here just to mess with their heads and denounce their feelings?!" he stood up as he screamed, "Is this what the great Miss Kuchiki does with her time?! Because if it is, then I won't be a fucking part of it! I'm out!"

Ichigo turned to leave when something slapped against his back. He turned back to see Rukia glaring at him even more fiercely than usual. It may have been the light but for the first time since he'd known her, she looked genuinely upset. He glanced down to see a notepad with a pen in the bindings lying at his feet.

It was labeled: Rukia's – Keep Out

"For the last few minutes, I've done nothing but compliment you," Rukia said to him, "And then, when I'm finally feeling ready to show you something personal, you explode on me like an asshole."

Ichigo just continued to stare at the notepad without looking up. "And to answer your question – No, that's not what the Great Miss Kuchiki does with her time because the Great Miss Kuchiki is too busy keeping up with the demands of her family! So you can just go to hell!"

His eyes shot to her and she readjusted herself on the couch, turning her back to him. He slowly sat back down and picked up the notepad, flipping it open. Inside he found the most childish of drawing littering the pages. At first he couldn't make sense of them, most of them appeared to be rabbits that were human-like but others were just plain weird!

There were some pictures of the bunnies fighting giant monsters with swords that were white and black, plus they wore black robes! It made no sense but it looked kinda amusing. The funny thing was, there were so bad that they were amazing. Yeah, the artistry wasn't all that great but each picture was alive and vibrant, even if they were pretty crappy.

"Wow. These suck."

Rukia huffed angrily and replied, "You certainly know how to kick 'em when they're down."

"But I can tell you enjoy it," Ichigo stood up and set the notepad down carefully next to her. "Thanks for sharing. Seriously." His tone was soft and apologetic, something he didn't even intend to do.

He turned and began making his way toward the door when he heard her call back, "I meant it, you know." He stopped and looked back to her.

"Meant what?"

"What I said about liking you. I meant that," she picked up her notepad and got up herself. She moved to the kitchen and grabbed another Hard Lemonade from the fridge, setting her pad on the counter. "I also meant what I said about inviting other guys up here," she walked back to the couch and plopped down on it, crossing her legs.

"You invite a lot of guys up here?" Ichigo asked, finding himself drawn back to the couch. Rukia shook her head and gulped her lemonade.

"Not really. But whenever I do, most of them get so turned off that they come up with excuses to leave." She gulped again, "And the ones that do stay, are just wasting my time."

"How's that?" he asked, sitting back down on the opposite side of the couch. She tilted her head toward him, finally realizing he wasn't still trying to leave. She gave an amused huff before taking another quick swig.

"Like I said before, most guys are looking for an easy lay," Ichigo laughed a bit at her comment and she smiled at him as she continued, "They think I'm some fragile flower that they need to careful with. But I'm not a fucking flower!" she pounded the arm of the couch as she spoke, "Don't these guys get that I like to have as much control as they do! That I want it HARD and ROUGH and FAST! God, they must think that if they even try to please me in bed that I'll just die in their arms! Fucking pussies!"

"If they only knew the truth!" Ichigo proclaimed, finally letting out a laugh himself. "The University Princess is a vulgar and tough bitch who likes it rough and doesn't want your pity!"

Rukia turned toward him in surprise, obviously not used to him laughing. It could have been the alcohol but for some reason, Ichigo just felt comfortable with her. Like he didn't have to hide things. Even more surprising was that he enjoyed being the only one to really see the true Rukia like this, drinking Hard Lemonade in the middle of the night.

He rolled over to look into her beautiful violet eyes and said, "That's what makes you so interesting, Rukia!" He grabbed his lemonade he'd left on the side table and took a swig. "You're smart, funny, quick-witted, tough and not afraid to stand up for what you believe. God, it's a wonder you're still single!"

"And what's that supposed to mean?!" Rukia objected with false hurt.

"Maybe if you showed more people who you really are, you'd have more friends, get a boyfriend and probably be a lot happier," he explained, taking a gulp. "I mean, if you don't want people to treat you like a flower, just show them that you're…uh, like a raging blizzard or something!"

He felt her hand smack the back of his head and heard her shout, "What the hell kind of comment was that?! How the hell am I like blizzard? Or are you trying to say I'm some cold bitch or something!"

Ichigo grumbled and sat up on the couch, glaring at her. "What I mean is: You're like a blizzard because while it appears cold and dangerous, if you're ready for it and know it well enough," he tapped two fingers between her eyes and smirked, "it's the most beautiful thing you'll ever see in your life."

Rukia's eyes widened for a moment before she suddenly burst into uncontrollable laughter. "You must be drunk!" she exclaimed, "What kind of weird ass explanation was that?!" She continued to laugh as she rested her head against his shoulder.

Ichigo joined in her laughter and patted her on the head. "I don't know, but its true isn't it?!"

They laughed together for a few minutes, only stopping to take a fresh breath before letting it all out in laughter. Subconsciously, Ichigo wrapped his arm around her shoulders and pulled her closer to him. She didn't fight it and leaned into his shoulder, snickering at their exchange.

Ichigo continued to laugh until he felt a hand on his chest. He stopped instantly and turned to see Rukia crawling on top of him and smiling, inches from his face. Before he knew what happened, she pressed her lips to his, hard and fast. His eyes flew open wide as she massaged his lips with her own before pulling back, her smile even brighter.

So many thoughts whirled around in Ichigo but all he could do was stare into the beautiful orbs of violet that bore into him.

"Tell me, Ichigo" Rukia whispered as she leaned close again, "When you look at me, who do you see?"

Despite the fact that Ichigo knew it was a loaded question, one that he should have taken time to consider before replying, his mouth opened and he gave the most honest answer that came to his mind.

"All I see is – Rukia"

Rukia's eyes shone as she kissed him again, dropping her drink and caressing the side of his face with her soft hands. Ichigo's bottle fell as well as he wrapped his arms around her and supported the back of her head. She kissed him with such passion and force that Ichigo though he was going to burst.

Against his lips, he felt her tongue begging for entrance. He complied and she forced her tongue deep inside, down his throat. He gagged for a moment before she retracted it slightly and began furiously lapping at his orifice. Ichigo came to his senses and pushed her tongue back with his own, forcing it back and inside her own mouth.

Rukia gave a surprised yelp as he furiously battled with her inside her own orifice. However, she began to moan against him and fought to regain dominance. They were forced to push back to suck in air and stared at each other with lust.

"Is this really happening?" Ichigo asked aloud, almost surprised. In response, Rukia leaned into his neck and began nipping at it playfully.

He moaned as she trailed her lips up to his ear and huskily whispered, "Only if you want it to." She pulled back and smiled. "Do you want it, Ichigo? Say the word, and this'll be as real as you want it to be."

It took Ichigo no time to pull her into him and smash his lips against her own. Smiling against his lips, Rukia moaned as they continued their tongue battle once again. It was fierce and neither side staying in the other's mouth for long, a true battle for dominance.

Pulling back again, Ichigo practically shouted, "How's that for an answer!"

Rukia laughed at his enthusiasm and gripped his shirt, pulling him off the couch. She led him down the hall and into her room, practically throwing him on the bed. As he hit the soft mattress, Rukia straddled him and gripped his face with her hands.

She leaned in close and whispered, "Don't go easy on me! Don't treat me like a flower! I want you to fuck me, with all your perverse virgin rage!" His eyes widened and she smirked, "You thought I didn't know? It was more than obvious. But that's not the deal right now!"

She claimed his lips another passionate exchange before quickly pulling back.

"I want you because I know you'll treat me the way you see me. So, I'll say it again!" she began to grind her hips against his crotch feeling the bulge in his pants prick up. "Fuck me, Ichigo. Let out all your perverse desires and make me feel a-fucking live!"

She pushed up and grabbed the sides of her dress, slipping it off over top of her. She lay on top of his area in nothing but a black bra and panties, devilishly smirking at him. Without warning, Ichigo grabbed her arms and flung her underneath him, throwing off his shirt in the process.

"If that's what you want, I'll gladly give it to you!" he shouted as he claimed her lips and began to thrust his tongue inside her mouth.

She gagged as she pushed it down her throat and played with her tongue. She smirked against his lips. He was sloppy but the passion he put into everything made her forget about how inexperienced he was. She began pumping her hips and grinding against him wrapping her arms around him and pulling him in closer.

Ichigo suddenly broke away from her and got off her, unzipping his pants. Rukia helped him by grabbing at the edges and pulling hard, letting him slip them off easily. He pressed himself against her as she unclipped her bra, tossing it aside. Ichigo member bulged in his underwear and pressed against her panties. He was nearly ready to thrust through the tight material when he suddenly realized something.

"Shit! I don't have protection!" he cursed, nearly ruining the mood.

"No need! Just do it raw!" Rukia demanded, grabbing him again. "Did you think I was at the party just for the drinks?! As it happens, it's my safe day so stop being a pussy and fuck me!"

Ichigo stared into her eyes and said, "I'll trust you on that!"

He gripped her panties with his hand and ripped them off her body, causing her to moan deeply. He positioned himself at her entrance and thrust inside her forcefully. Rukia cried out in a mixture of pain and pleasure. Ichigo stopped for a moment before she smirked devilishly at him and began thrusting her hips up to meet him.

Enticed by her actions, Ichigo began pounding into her with reckless abandon. She was tight and wet, his member sliding in and out furiously. Both of them moaned in ecstasy as they finally managed to synchronize their thrusts. Ichigo felt her walls tighten as Rukia reached her orgasm and shot her juices all over his member. She moaned and fell back onto the bed, smiling.

However, Ichigo hadn't finished and continued to thrust inside her, making her moan again.

"T-That's it, Ichigo! Let out all your f-frustrations!" she shouted, letting him do as he pleased with her body.

She felt him member begin to pulse and was shocked when he suddenly gripped her face and kissed her hard as he burst his hot seed inside her. She moaned against his mouth as he embedded himself deep within her, a burning sensation tingling them both. He pulled out and collapsed next to her, both of them breathing heavily.

A few moments passed before Ichigo felt Rukia flip him over and straddle him again. "Who said we were done?" she said with a grin.

Ichigo gave an amused huff before catching his breath and grabbing her arms, surprising her. He easily slipped out from under her and pressed her face into the mattress, gripping her wrists and lightly tugging. Her knees kept her behind up at the level of his crotch and he felt his member harden again.

Guiding his prick to her sex again, Rukia scoffed in mock annoyance. "A bit much don't you think!"

She heard him chuckle and lean toward her. "You were the one who said you wanted it rough. Now you're complaining?"

"Who said anything about complaining!" she squirmed in his grasp, smirking. "You're just taking too long!"

Ichigo grinned as he thrust into her again, making her moan loudly. Using her arms as leverage, he pounded into her sex, like a mad dog. Rukia huffed and salivated at the pleasure that overwhelmed her, moaning deeply in her throat. Quickly enough, she felt him quicken his pace and her breathing became quick and ragged.

Moaning along with her, Ichigo thrust deep inside her and felt the walls of her fold clench tightly. Rukia bit into her sheets and reared her head back as her orgasm rocked her body, spurting her juices all over Ichigo and her sheets. A moment later, Ichigo pulled her back in full force and embedded himself fully inside her, his hot spunk coating her womb.

Finally, he released her arms and she fell back on the mattress, allowing the material between her teeth to be freed. Ichigo pulled out and collapsed next to her.

"O-Okay, now we're done!" she moaned as she allowed herself to lie flat on the bed.

Both of them rolled onto their back, their arms landing on the other's body. They glanced to each other and smirked before breaking out into laughter between deep breaths. With the last of her strength Rukia pulled herself over to him and laid her head on his chest, wrapping her arms around his frame. Ichigo pulled her closer up to his face and kissed her again.

Pulling back, he asked, "So, how was I?"

"Sloppy…" Rukia said, still breathing heavily. Ichigo's eyes widened and he scoffed, turning his head until Rukia pulled his face back and kissed him. "But definitely the best! None of the other guys come close!"

Ichigo kind of wanted to ask about the other guys but didn't want to ruin the moment. Right now, he was exhausted and had a beautiful girl snuggling up to him. Nothing could be worth screwing that up!

Rukia lay her head down on his chest and smiled, finally having been satisfied. Ichigo patted her hair and laid his back, pulling a pillow to rest his head on. Sleep came quickly and the pair let their exhaustion be dealt with.

-24 Hours Prior to Graduation-

Sunlight stun Ichigo's eyes as he awoke.

His head was aching and his body was stiff but he felt great! Slowly lifting his head, he immediately recognized that he wasn't in his bed. The memory of the night's encounter flooded his mind and he fell back onto the pillow, a smile on his face. His arms swept around him but he found the space next to him empty.

Sitting up, he saw that Rukia was nowhere in sight. He looked around a moment before he heard the sound of running water. Across the room was a door with a bit of steam leaking out. He huffed but continued to smile and lay back down. He turned over and for some reason, he deeply inhaled the scent on the pillow.

It was sweet but also…spicy? He didn't know how but it was clearly the way he wanted to remember his night with Rukia.

The sounds of water ceased and the door of the bathroom opened to reveal Rukia, a large towel wrapped around her body and another encasing her hair. She sighed in relief before catching sight of Ichigo and smiling.

"Morning. Sleep well?" she asked with sarcasm.

"Yeah, actually I did."

"Great, now get out."

Ichigo's eyes widened and he froze, unable to respond. Rukia raised an eyebrow before rolling her eyes and sitting down on the bed.

"I meant, 'I want to change. Leave the room.' You didn't think I was that heartless did you?"

Ichigo snapped out of his shock and breathed a sigh of relief. Rukia scoffed and pointed to the bathroom. "You can shower if you want. There's plenty of hot water left."

"Oh, sure. I'll do that." Ichigo said, getting up.

Rukia chuckled and pointed to his crotch, which was completely exposed. Looking down, he finally realized his manhood was showing and he screamed in high pitch before covering it with his hand and rushing to the bathroom. Slamming the door behind him, Ichigo felt his face flush as Rukia's laughter reached his ears.

Pushing his embarrassment aside, he gladly turned on the hot water and scrubbed himself clean. All the while, he kept thinking about last night. It had been the most amazing and fruitful encounter he'd ever had! The only such encounter but that didn't make it any less thrilling!

A light knock at the door brought him back to reality. "It's me," Rukia's voice rang out as the door cracked open, "I'm leaving your clothes inside the door."

Before he could respond, the door closed and Ichigo peered out to see exactly what she'd said she do. He smiled and finished his shower, got dressed quickly and went back into the room to find it empty. Walking into the living area, he heard the sound of pans clanking and went to the kitchen to find Rukia already flipping pancakes.

She looked back and smirked at him. "Hungry? I've got bacon on the way too."

As Ichigo took a seat he said, "Didn't know you could cook."

"Idiot. How else would I feed myself?" she mocked as she set a plate in front of both of them.

The scent of pancakes and bacon was too tantalizing and both of them furiously began eating. Ichigo chuckled as he watched Rukia lift a pancake with her finger and bit it in half, a part of it dangling from her mouth. She glared at him and slurped it up, chewing as she spoke.

"Whah? I likh pancakhes!"

Her words only made Ichigo laugh harder and he went back to his food. Rukia rolled her eyes and finished her food. Both of them sighed happily, leaning back in their chairs.

"Oh God! I'm so full! Sex takes it out of you, doesn't it?!" Rukia asked with a smirk, making Ichigo chuckle and nod.

"Yeah, but damn is it worth it!"

They both smiled and laughed before settling into a pleasant silence. Outside, the sun was shining bright and the sounds of bird chirping echoed. The pair seemed to glow in the morning light and simply reveled in being completely satisfied at the moment. After a while had passed, Rukia chuckled and leaned her elbows on the table.

"I haven't laughed like that in years," she said, a soft smile on her face.

Ichigo glanced to her and leaned forward too. "Me neither," Rukia glanced to him as he spoke, "I spent so much time working on getting my degree that I didn't take the time to enjoy myself. Now I just feel stupid!"

Rukia poked his head and said, "You should! Isn't this supposed to be the time of your life? Getting freaky in college?"

"I could say the same to you, couldn't I? That act of yours must getting old," he replied, kicking her chair slightly. She scoffed but smiled and looked away.

"The act's been old," she retorted, her smile beginning to fade. "But I have to uphold the responsibility of my family. I'm supposed to be the next head," she scoffed and rested her chin in her hands, "What would they think if they knew I wasn't anything like they imagined?"

"Yeah," Ichigo agreed, "If they saw the blizzard instead of the flower, would they let you off the hook?" He was half-kidding and they both knew it. Rukia gave him an annoyed look and turned away.

"Not likely. They probably lock me and never let me out again." Her tone was light but her eyes hardened. Ichigo hated that look.

For some reason, seeing her like that pissed him off. How dare they make such an amazing girl live her life like a trapped animal instead of a normal person? It sickened him but also gave him courage for something that wouldn't leave his mind since last night. Taking a big breath, he steadied himself and asked:

"Will you be my girlfriend?"

Rukia's eye shot to his, utter shock on her face. Ichigo knew that she could see he was serious and he patiently waited for a response. Her eyes looked into his for a moment before she glanced away, hesitating. She looked back and opened her mouth but closed it immediately, unable to reply. Finally, she turned away completely.

Ichigo thought he was ready for this reaction, but it still stung. "I get it," he said, standing up. "Never mind." He began to walk away and look for his coat.

"Wait." Rukia said quietly, making him turn back. She glanced up at him with sad eyes. "It's not that simple." Ichigo sighed and sat back down, listening intently. "Listen, last night was…incredibly, really. But I just don't know if it's gonna work."

"Why not?" he asked, but she didn't respond. She looked like she wanted to say something but held back.

Ichigo scoffed and said, "Then let me ask this. Yeah, last night was incredibly but that's because it meant something to me. It wasn't just about losing my virginity. It was losing it to someone that I won't ever forget! Or was it just sex to you?"

Rukia looked at him with surprise and replied, "No! It wasn't just sex!" she said as she clenched her fists, "I don't sleep around. I've only slept with two guys before you and while they were more experienced, neither of them bothered to see if I was satisfied. Believe it or not, when I invited you up, I never thought I'd end up going to bed with you."

"Well, thanks for the vote of confidence." Ichigo said as he hung his head.

"That's not what I meant! Even if you insulted my drawings, you still looked at them. That meant more to me than anything a guy's ever done before. And besides," for the first time, her face flushed and she nervously looked away, "When you said that you see only Rukia when you look at me, I knew you weren't lying."

An awkward silence followed but didn't last long.

Ichigo tapped her arm and she looked back at him, staring into his eyes. "Rukia, the bottom line is; I want to get to know you. Really know you and not the fairy princess you pretend to be. So why not give it a chance?"

Rukia sighed and replied, "How would it even work? I'm going to be working for my brother here in town soon and where will you be?"

"I'm going to medical school. Right here in Karakura Town." He insisted, making her purse her lips and think hard. "I'm not saying we need to see each other all the time but I'd like to see you more. Spend more time with you."

A chuckle followed his word as Rukia smirked at him. "You sure you're not just looking for sex?"

"If that's what you think, then we don't need to have sex anymore!" Ichigo insisted, narrowing his eyes.

"W-Whoa now! I didn't say that!" Rukia nearly shouted, before clearing her throat. "I was just kidding. You didn't need to be so hasty." Ichigo groaned and slumped in his chair, making her regret her joke.

"Look," she continued, "The truth is; I don't know if my family would allow it." Ichigo pulled forward and glared at her, scowling deeply. She was taken aback by the look at first but quickly responded with a frown of her own. "I don't mean to burst your bubble, Ichigo. But like I said before, my personal interests don't mean shit to them. And if they say that I can't—".

"Bullshit," Ichigo cut her off, "I don't care if your family wouldn't like it or even try to stop it. All I'm asking is what you want." He waited for her to respond but she fell silent, so he continued. "Personally, I say who cares about those bastards! All they do is make you miserable and that's bullshit! Family should support each other and if they can't accept the real you, then you don't need them!"

"It's not that simple, Ichigo! I can't just—".

"Yes, you can! You don't owe them anything!"

"They paid for my tuition!"

"For a degree that makes you miserable! That's not a favor. That's a curse! Give me one good reason you should respect their wishes—!"

"Because my brother took me in!" Rukia shouted in his face, "I was an orphan on the streets before he took me and gave me a home! It may not be the life I wanted but at least I have a good home!"

Ichigo slammed his fist on the table and screamed back, "That doesn't mean you have to do everything your family wants! Did you ever stop to consider that your happiness was more important than repaying a debt! If you were my girlfriend, I wouldn't put my reputation above your happiness!"

Rukia sighed heavily and sat down, glaring at him. "This is why it wouldn't work," she insisted, "You don't understand my family and the way that they—".

"No, I get it. I just don't care."

That stopped her instantly and Rukia found herself unable to look away from him. Ichigo stared at her for a moment before taking a deep inhale and exhale, calming himself.

"Rukia, I don't care where you come from or what you think you need to do. The fact is; you're the most interesting girl I've ever known in my life and I don't want you to lose that to these people who don't even know the real you." He scoffed and continued, "I bet they don't even know about your drawing, do they?"

She averted her gaze and he sighed, "Thought so. And you probably haven't told your brother that you don't want to study business or that you like drawing. Am I right?"

Her silence was his acknowledgement. Taking a chance, he reached out and grabbed her hand. To his surprise, she squeezed back and looked at him with sad eyes once again. He could tell she was conflicted and that she needed time to sort this out.

"Just tell me now. If your family wasn't a factor in all this, what would your answer be?" he asked quietly.

"I…I don't know." That response dug into him until he felt her grip his hand tightly. He looked up to see her nervously smiling at him. "But I know that regardless, I do want to know more about you, too. It's just…" She lost her words and hung her head in confusion. She groaned and shook her head but still couldn't find the right words to say.

"Alright then," Ichigo said, getting her attention. "Take some time and think about it. I won't pressure you into anything. Just do what makes you happy and that'll be enough for me."

"You're just saying that—".

"No, I'm not." His insistence caught her. "If you don't think it'll work out between us then that's fine, I'll accept that. But at least take some time to think about it." He pulled his hand away, grabbed a pen and wrote down a number on a scrap of paper. "Call me when you make up your mind."

He placed the paper in her hand and stood up. "I need to go. I'm meeting my family today. They'll be here for my graduation."

Rukia looked at the paper and nodded, a slight smile on her face. "Alright, you win. I'll think about it. But that's all I can promise."

"Okay then," Ichigo said with nod before nervously scratching the back of his head, "I know you're not walking but if you want…feel free to come and watch me graduate."

Rukia gave an amused huff and half-smiled at him. "No promises. Those things are boring as hell."

"I'm only going for my family," Ichigo replied, smirking. "I, uh, better go."

"Yeah," she agreed, walking him to the door. He opened it and turned to say good-bye when she pulled him down and kissed him hard on the lips. She pulled back and smiled at him with sad eyes.

"Thanks for everything, Ichigo."

For some reason, the way she said that made him understand that she'd already made her choice. And it wasn't favorable. His heart sank but he held himself together and replied, "No problem, Rukia."

He slowly walked out of her apartment and heard her close the door behind him.

-Present Time: Graduation-

All the next day, Ichigo never got a message from Rukia. Not even a call. He had expected this but it didn't make it any easier. When his friends asked about going home with her, he avoided the subject. He wanted to keep that memory as sacred as he could.

Now, as his family congratulated him on earning his degree, he continued to look around in a vain attempt to find her. He felt stupid but he held out hope she'd at least be here. Reality was crueler than he imagined it to be.

"I shouldn't be surprised," he whispered, "I really shouldn't have expected her to come."

He lifted his head and began walking toward his family when something smacked him on the back of his head, causing him to grunt and stop. Suddenly, a voice proclaimed in his ear:

"And just what are you looking all depressed about?!"

Ichigo's eyes widened as he turned and saw none other than Rukia Kuchiki smiling at him. He couldn't help himself as he broke out into a bright smile as well.


"Who else? Idiot!" she retorted, folding her arms.

Turning around to her, Ichigo noticed that she looked different. She was wearing a white blouse with frills around the collar and sleeves. Not only that, she was wearing jean shorts that barely reach her thighs, not something she would normally wear in public! On her feet were a simple pair of shoes and not heels, like he'd have expected. But the most surprising change was her hair!

It was shortened into a bob that perfectly framed her face, the stubborn bang still hanging between her eyes.

"Well?" she asked, spinning around and grinning, "What do you think?"

"Your hair's shorter!" he blurted out, earning a kick to the shin. "Ow! What the hell was that for?!"

"For your pathetic face! I come all this way to see you, make myself presentable, even get a haircut and all you can say is 'It's shorter'!" she put her hands on her hips and glared at him, "How stupid can you get!"

Ichigo completely forgot about the pain and smiled at her. "My bad. I like your new outfit. Your hair looks great too."

Rukia sarcastically scoffed and replied, "Well, at least someone likes it. My family pitched a fit when I came home with it yesterday."

Ichigo eyes widened and his mouth hung over for a second. "Wait, you mean you—".

"I thought about everything you said and decided it was time for a change," she replied, "I told my brother about wanting to take some art classes. And after he scolded my about cutting my hair without consulting him…he told me that as long as I take a graduate level business course, he'd be more than happy to pay for all of it."

"Seriously! That's great!" Ichigo proclaimed. Before he knew what he was doing, he swooped down and hugged her. He held her tightly for a moment before he realized what he was doing and moved to let go.

"I, uh—", he began to say before, shockingly, Rukia returned the hug and latched her arms behind his head, pulling him down to her level.

"Stop being such a wimp," she whispered before she kissed him. Ichigo's eyes widened for a moment before he leaned into her, kissing back. They pulled apart and Rukia smiled up at him. "If my family ends up disowning me, you better take responsibility."

Ichigo smiled and replied, "No problem."

"Hey! Ichigo! What's the hold up?!"

The couple turned to see Isshin, Yuzu and Karin quickly approaching them. Karin was the first to smirk at him and say, "So this is why you were so depressed."

"My boy is finally becoming a man! I knew it! Masaki, our son will give us babies soon—Ahhhh!" Isshin screamed as Karin punched him in the face, flooring him. Meanwhile, Yuzu walked up to the couple and smiled sweetly.

"Oh, you have a friend, Ichigo?" Yuzu said naïvely, "It's nice to meet you, Miss…"

Rukia smirked and untangled herself from Ichigo. "It's nice to meet you too. I'm Rukia Kuchiki."

She wrapped her arm around Ichigo's waist and pulled him next to her. He glanced down at her, his face flushing, not knowing what to say. With a cheeky grin on her face, Rukia glanced up at him before proudly declaring to the Kurosaki family:

"I'm Ichigo's girlfriend!"

The End

This was a little project I put together because of my recent graduation from college. It's a tough time and not everyone gets the happy ending they fantasize about. However, that's why I wanted it to happen to these two!

Thanks for reading and I promise that I'll post the next chapter of my regular stories soon! Keep on smiling my beautiful readers!