Once I could stand up again, I followed everyone to the kitchen. But it turned out (the smell gave us a fair warning) that someone was already there
. And that someone was none other than the heir of the Kuchiki clan, young Kuchiki Byakuya (although I guess he came from a different time because he was dressed as a student just like us)!! By the look -- and smell, as I've already said -- of things, he'd been trying to make tea and had only managed to melt whatever he'd been using. Unlike Yoruichi-san and Urahara, I decided to help him
because I could see how angry and ashamed he was, and I knew how to work the water.
I got distracted after that when Shunsui raided the cupboards and brought me food, and even more so when an extremely cute young Hollow walked in. Now don't ask me why I couldn't help offering him food, all right? I don't know! I've never been able to resist children ; it comes from having seven younger siblings... So, like I was saying, I was distracted and didn't instruct young Kuchiki-dono about the brewing time and bitterly regretted it -- and I mean bitterly
But after that, I don't know... Could his horrible tea have been enough to knock me out?
When I came out of the room
, I found not only Shunsui but four other people as well; a young man and a young woman looking about our age, and two lovely kids. Turns out the young woman was from the Shiba clan and Shunsui decided to try out his new technique on her. And he got buried in sand
, so I'm not too sure what the conclusion is... At least it gave us a good laugh. Towels were needed at that point (one of the children wanted one as well) so I went to fetch it since I knew exactly where they were. And that's when Shunsui started questioning poor Kurosaki-san
and wouldn't let go. He was clearly bothered by something...
And next time I won't question him, because he was right! After taking us to another room, Kurosaki-san told us he knew us
. And that he was a shinigami. Well, used to be. I know, hard to believe. I couldn't either... But then he started saying things he shouldn't have known
. And messing with our heads, supposedly telling us all these things about our future (graduating from the academy, Shunsui becoming Captain...) But then he came out of his gigai
and indeed turned out to be a shinigami, but Captain-level too!! Despite all the things that remained to be explained, I must say it was a huge relief to know there was someone with so much power around...
And then Urahara walked into the room
, but he was obviously not from the same time as us, and he was wearing... a Captain's coat! And he knew Isshin-san too and the reason is that he apparently provided the gigai the latter has been in for a year. And a charming story it is
I really need to sit down and rest for a week because Yoruichi-san also walked in
and it's getting a bit too much for me...
I'm so happy I don't know what to do with myself...
So even though I felt quite foolish for doing so, I followed Tatsuki and Rukia's advice
and decided to go look for Shunsui. I honestly didn't know what was going to happen, but one thing was for sure: I couldn't leave things as they were. And boy am I glad I did!! I found him just after leaving the pool and couldn't believe what I was hearing when it turned out it was just a big misunderstanding
and he never meant to finish with me but thought I wanted to finish with him...
Not a word will be said about what happened afterwards, thankyouverymuch, and it will remain in my memory only, for me to think about whenever I am foolish enough to doubt what we have.
I don't pretend to understand everything about everything, but I would like someone to tell me how I ended up in a church
, when the last thing I can remember is a van...
But yes, the fake wedding between Kuchiki and Abarai-kun. Oh I couldn't help thinking about the last wedding I'd been to -- Kaien and Miyako's -- and that did nothing to lift my mood. Shunsui did his best to cheer me up, as he always does, and I knew I'd have to snap out of it quick before our escape plan was put into action. Well I didn't have much time to think about it all, because when Aizen appeared
, Shunsui decided to cover one side of the church and so I got down to business too
. When the shower of darts started falling all over the church, I managed to shelter myself from them but ended up cut off from everyone else. So I did something stupid
and was rewarded with one of those darts hitting me in the back, and knowing my health, I wasn't going to last like Isshin did. The last thing I remember is Shunsui catching me just before I hit the floor, saying he wouldn't leave...
I'd noticed a while back that there was something wrong with Isshin. I know some people would probably argue that there's always *something* wrong with him, but even more so, and it seemed to have something to do with women. So on the way out of the club, I gave my jacket to Yoruichi-san
(she really doesn't understand these sorts of things...)
Everybody knew it was most likley a bad idea for Madarame-san to drive again, but Ishida-sensei wasn't there anymore and Isshin had had too many drinks. Still, maybe *he* wouldn't have crashed into that building
! I managed to open a door and get out so we wouldn't all suffocate, and when Shunsui found poor Tatsuki-chan obviously in shock (it turns out most of the women were in *that* building!!), I decided to look for Isshin so he could check up on her
. Turns out my suspicion about his "problem" was right so he wouldn't get anywhere near her... And then Yoruichi-san let something slip about Ichigo-kun and that was the end of Isshin, so I told him to calm down and made sure he wouldn't move before going back to the side of the van to intercept Tatsuki-chan
It felt good to be doing things and helping people again, but I really am too old for so much excitment...
I should have known Isshin't arrival would create chaos... How could I have expected him to be any different after merely 20 years away? I must say I didn't really feel like dealing with him (or his son, later on), and left it to Shunsui instead. Besides, Isshin was more his friend than he was mine. I mean I do like Isshin, of course, but we only got to know each other through Shunsui in the first place. Anyway...
I did feel I had to say something when Shunsui started acting too casually with him in front of Ichigo
. And the two of them looked like they could do with a private moment, if only Isshin could concentrate on his son and not show us pictures of his kids. I mean they were adorable, but still, he's always had focusing issues... It turns out that Shunsui knew what he was doing. Of course, Ichigo had enough on his mind, and people tend to be too friendly even to complete strangers once they've consumed enough alcohol (not that I've ever experienced it first hand).
So I put my guards down. I was so wrong... When Shunsui made a pass at a waitress
, Hell broke loose again and before I knew it I found myself running after said waitress and kissing her. And I'm not talking about a small peck either... I was mortified. I couldn't see how we would ever get out of that one, and I honestly wasn't sure Shunsui's idea
was going to work. But it did! Oh thank God it did!! True, I wasn't too pleased to find him half naked right in front of me while everybody was watching, but he'd woken me up again and that was all that mattered. And when the cake fight started on stage, I begged him to go. I'd had more than enough of that place...
I never thought I would ever do this to him...
After Abarai-kun left us alone on that bench, it seems as though a monster had been awakened inside me
. I have to admit he did all he could to make things better, but him nearly calling me by someone else's name
, followed by Madarame-san's interruption, made the monster completely lose it. I've always been a calm person. Even as a child, my mother said I rarely made tantrums. And later I learned that getting too excited would induce coughing fits so I grew into a very calm person. He tried again (although I'm not sure what he said was the best thing to say in that situation...) but the monster didn't calm down one bit and I ended up firing a binding spell at him and taking out my sword
! And because we're evenly matched and I couldn't get to him, I even released Sougyo no Kotowari! Against him!! I managed to regain control just before I attacked him
, but it took its toll on my already weakened body and I collapsed at his feet. I never thought I would lift my swords against him. I never want it to happen again. I'd rather die than see it happen again... He's always been there for me and looked after me all these years, and this is how I thank him?I showed no resistance when he took me to the van with all the other later on
(although I'd refused going to the hospital when he'd offered to take me) and when we arrived at the club they had chosen as the venue for Abarai-kun's bachelor party, I decided to keep quiet, stay in a corner somewhere and mostly ignore what was going on around me
. Even though I could tell he was enjoying the...exotic dancers, I'll call them, Shunsui came to sit with me instead
. I was really touched, and glad to see that he'd forgiven me what had happened in the garden. So it finally looked as though I might be getting some peace and quiet (well, if you ignored the horribly loud music and all the...dancers) when Isshin came barging in and begging us to help him
Right... So after what I could only describe as being...sucked into the sky, I woke up all on my own in what appeared to be a rather large mansion. I managed to make my way downstairs and came upon Ichigo-kun, Uryuu-kun (in a dress) and Orihime-chan
. And it turned out the mansion was somehow mine. And maybe Shunsui's too. I'm not too sure. I've always made a point to keep my private life private
, and here I was, telling three youngsters I really don't know that well that I needed Shunsui for cuddles
... I guess it could have been worse; at least I'm a man again.
Once Uryuu-kun (still in that dress) had gone to fetch Shunsui, Ichigo-kun seemed rather keen to leave so I didn't force him to stay. I've spent so much time on my own that it depressed me a little to see him run like that, which Orihime-chan understood and so she offered to cook
to cheer me up. Now I'm not one to say no to any sort of food; it's the second best thing guaranteed to lift my mood. She appears to be my cook (wow, I've never had...well, servants, I guess. I know Kiyone would cook for me if I let her, but it's probably wiser not to) and the food she offered me was so good. She's a funny girl, that Orihime-chan. I'm not sure I understand her all the time but she's so lovely and caring.
We'd moved to the kitchen (because I couldn't possibly wait in the other room while she slaved in there for me) when a friend of hers walked in
, looking a bit disoriented. I didn't know her so she obviously was one of the few extra humans that were evacuated. And she was very pregnant too. Not that I wanted to patronise her, but I was relieved when she told me that she wasn't actually pregnant. Well of course she was, the bump was there, but that was something that had appeared in this new place. The two of them were obviously close and I couldn't help thinking that I was in the way and thought I should leave them, when Tatsuki-chan mentioned something very strange
about leaving a hospital and walking straight into this mansion. We didn't have too much time to talk about it because Ichigo-kun, Kuchiki and Byakuya walked in
(the sunglasses give him such a mean look... I should tell him). I was looking forward to speaking with Kuchiki again but Byakuya wanted my attention as well, and for once I had the feeling he wasn't about to blame me for anything. I felt sorry to give him priority but he speaks to me so little these days that I couldn't turn him down and followed him back into the living room.
And after he left again I didn't feel like going back into the kitchen. I hoped Orihime-chan and Tatsuki-chan managed to speak about whatever they wouldn't say in front of me, and I was glad to know that Kuchiki was with her friends. So I stayed in the dining room, reading various things to try to amuse myself (I didn't understand any of it) when someone suddenly flashed past me
. It appeared to be a young man, but he too was wearing a dress. Or a skirt. I don't know, don't ask me. All I could think about was that there was something highly abnormal about his reiatsu, and that I'd already felt something like that somewhere but I couldn't remember where. I promptly forgot about the boy when Shunsui suddenly burst through the double door and, I am most ashamed to say, I ran to him... He made me spin around, whispered in my ear and gave me some Pocky... I hope I never see that young man again, but I'm sure that's unlikely. And he was acting like such a flirt
, I could hardly believe it; olging us all one after the other! (that would be Shunsui, Ishida-sensei and myself) Then I remembered that the similar reiatsu I'd felt before came from that Vaizard woman with the Hollow when I'd woken up in the previous place and so I tried to interrogate him but he wouldn't answer any questions. He was actually displaying all signs of getting ready for a fight if he had to, and Ryuzoji's sudden arrival
didn't make it any better. I've seen him act like he doesn't know what's happening countless times before and I could tell that's exactly what he was doing. The Vaizard boy knew too much about everything and I really wanted to question him further but -- great timing, as usual!! -- I got too worked up, which naturally brought a rather violent coughing fit
. I tried to hang in there as much as I could, but when I dropped to my knees, Shunsui decided to leave the Vaizard boy to Isshin and took me outside.He nearly dropped me on Abarai-kun's lap
, who was sitting there on his own, looking more miserable than I've ever seen him. And after nearly coughing out my lungs (you'd really think I'd be used to it by now) I remembered the very strange announcement we heard a little while ago
, obviously coming from whoever brought us here, and suddenly everything made more sense. We managed to get him to talk to us -- while I went through my Pocky in record time -- and the poor boy is being forced by Byakuya to marry Kuchiki... It seems Byakuya is struggling to act like himself in this place (I, for one, cannot complain too much, but it would be nice if I could stop being so obvious sometimes...) and Kuchiki even had to attack him at one point. Ouch, that's not going to do any good to their relationship... And I really could have done without Shunsui's idea of throwing a bachelor party
to try to cheer up Abarai-kun... (he said he'd be chasing girls!!)
I knew something was wrong as soon as I opened my eyes, because I was indoors. It turns out I was in our headquarters' main room, but none of the people I had been travelling with were there. There was, on the other hand, a rather strange looking woman with horns
AND a Hollow... Talking about women, somehow I had become one too -- and no, don't ask, because I don't understand! The woman seemed to have power over the Hollow (as well as all the strange creatures in the room) and when she asked him to bow before her, he broke into a song
that ended mentioning Vaizards. By then I realised that Kisuke was also there
(he had been turned into a small robot so I only recognised his reiatsu, but before we had any chance of questioning her, she vanished. Seeing how this was clearly not my Division building as I knew, we decided to leave and search for others.
So after venturing into what happened to be a teleporting device, we found ourselves in a rather creepy looking bar
-- and not only because most of the patrons seemed unconscious. In there I had the pleasure of being introduced to Ishida Ryuuken, the young Quincy's father, who happened to be a vampire... Charming. No, I shouldn't say that. He was nothing but polite towards me, even when I faltered and had to sit down. Then Ichigo-kun and Kichiki walked in
and I was so relieved to see her safe that I could have cried. I couged instead -- surprise, surprise. Among the things she had to say to me, I learned that Ryuzoji Isshin was still alive and happened to be Ichigo-kun's father (now that I think of it I can definitely see similarities between the two of them) and that he had Kuchiki basically kidnapped the Ishidas, who refused to be evacuated... A stricter Captain may have decided to sanction her there and then but I didn't have the heart to do it, especially when she mentioned Kaien
... (What was Kuukaku thinking??) I tried my best to remain as vague as possible seeing how I didn't even know where he was, and then proceeded to apologise to Ishida-sensei for the treatment he had received, promising that I would do my best to help protecting him and his son along with Kuchiki.
And then it all went dreadfully wrong
... I only meant to follow directions to the toilets and stumbled into another of these teleporting devices, which, would you believe it, took me straight to the brewery supplying the bar! I don't know how long I was stuck there (thank God I didn't let anyone make me taste anything that they kept offering -- I guess I am a better-looking woman than I thought...) I somehow made it back to what appeared to be Soukyoku Hill
, only to stumble upon a scene that felt like a horrible déjà vu...