Heeeeyy...sorry for the REALLY late update..I had this Summer School type thing that wasn't really Summer School..but it kinda was..BUT IT'S OVER NOW! I was really tired during it which caused lack of inspiration and yeah. BUT IT'S OVER AND A;LDSKFJA;LDK! I SWEAR I'll start with consistent updates..Ugh..well yeah. Thanks to all who've reviewed at alerted, I appreciate it very much so! And I would love more feedback :) Well, here's the next chapter! Enjoy! Translations at the bottom
Mushoku No Kagayaki
"Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal." -Anonymous
Karakura Town August 10 3:00 P.M.
I loved my inner world. It was always cold, always quiet, and always peaceful.
The cold wind ruffled my hair and clothes, of course having no effect on me. I opened my eyes and saw the endless valley of snow and ice; on the ground, trees, and distant mountains. From the gray sky, small snowflakes started to fall and the air suddenly shifted into heavy gusts of icy wind.
I shifted my eyes up and saw Hyorinmaru descend to the ground right in front of me. It folded its giant wings and lowered its head a little, looking down at me.
"Master, why are you so pent up with anger?"
I scowled and clenched my fists slightly. "You know perfectly well why! I'm losing my powers, and I have to deal with this damned human!"
The red eyes narrowed dangerously. "Watch your tongue master. You shouldn't use such language."
I scoffed and crossed my arms. "Cheh.."
There was a long moment of silence before Hyorinmaru spoke up. "Master, you shouldn't be stressing so much. You need to calm down."
I twitched and stood up, glaring at the dragon. "Are you kidding me? I can't shunpo or even use kido anymore! And it is all because of that human! I have every right to be stressing out!"
There was another moment of silence between the both of us. Hyorinmaru slowly lowered its head, bringing it close to mine. I felt its ice cold breath against my skin, giving even me goose bumps. Our eyes locked, staying that way for a very long time.
I slowly felt myself calming down. My muscles began to relax and all the cuts and bruises on my skin began to disappear. My eyes felt very heavy all of a sudden and I couldn't keep them open. My legs began to feel weak, along with my entire body. It didn't feel like the energy was being drained from me, but rather, something else. My anger and tension perhaps?
Before I knew it, I was lying on something very cold and staring up into the gray sky. Everything else seemed to become distant; I was unable to focus on anything, not even on my own breathing.
"There, now you're calm." Hyorinmaru echoed in my ear, it seemed to be the only thing that was clear to me. I tried to form words, but nothing came out. I even tried to lift my body but I couldn't move.
"Don't worry," It soothed the direction of its voice range from my right ear to my left. "You're in a state of paralysis. I put it under it so you could calm down, so please hear me out."
I couldn't respond, so I simply stayed in place, waiting for it to continue.
"I understand your anger, but you mustn't blame Kato Shizuko. She was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I do not know why your powers are deteriorating, but I wish to know why as much as you do."
There was another silence, I assuming Hyorinmaru wanting its words to sink in.
"I also understand your position master, and I know it's dire. Instead of you training her, perhaps you try to regain your own powers while have someone else train her. Try to think of some plan master. Remember to collect your emotions and try your best to think…"
Everything slowly became distant, even Hyorinmaru's voice.
"Because if you don't, you'll have a repeat of last time.."
My eyes snapped open. I stared blankly at my reflection in the blade of Hyorinmaru before I let out a laugh that would make anyone question my sanity and ran a hand through my hair.
It was right. I had let my emotions get the best of me, which clouded my thinking. I had to think of a plan in order to somehow pull myself out of the trouble that I was already in. If I continue to get overly emotional, it can only lead to deepening the possible punishment.
I shot up and walked over to my discarded shihakusho and haori and put the two back on and sheathed Hyorinmaru.
'But first things first, I have to apologize..'
Karakura Town August 10th 3:15 P.M.
Stretches were bothersome today. I had been stressed about because of the whole 'turning-into-a-shinigami-situation' which caused my muscles to tense up. Not only that, it was difficult to dance and stretch with a giant cast on my hand.
The doctor has said that the frost bite was only mild, and there were no permanent damages to my skin tissue, but I would have a dull pain in my hand which I would have to take pain medication for. He also had said that my Mom would have to put Aloe on it every six hours and make sure that I took hot baths to help 'warm up' the almost frozen skin tissue.
He was confused about my fake story for how I got it, but to be honest, I would believe the 'sticking my hand in the ice box for too long' story over the 'a shinigami froze my hand because he got pissy' story. It was so strange, on how not only Hitsugaya-san had given me frost bite, but almost froze the underground training area as well.
'I recall a couple nights ago, when that hollow consumed Mika, Kurosaki-san had appeared and shouted some sort of chant and some darkish light had shot at the hollow, causing it to burn. And Hitsugaya-san had given me his powers through his sword, and when I woke up, I had a sword of my own. So I can assume that the Shinigami channel their powers through their sword.'
'But does that mean that all their powers are different? Could Kurosaki-san freeze things as well? Or is it just a 'Hitsugaya thing'? I know so much yet so little at the same time.'
I heard clapping echo through the room and I turned my attention forward and stopped my dancing.
"Alright girls, good job today!" Sato-sensei, our dance instructor, called from the front of the room.
"I'll see you all next week!"
I stood there for a second in slight shock that class was already over. It had seemed that only five minutes ago we had just started our stretches.
It was only the nudge of someone brushing past me that brought me out of my slight daze. I shook my head and trotted to the back of the studio where the bags were placed.
'I must be losing it.'
"You seemed out of it today, Shizuko-chan." Mom commented as walked home in the rain under the safety of our umbrellas.
I looked at the wet cement and shrugged. "We all have our days when we can't focus." She stopped walking. I turned around and looked up at her, meeting her gaze.
"You've been like this for the past four days. What's wrong?"
I narrowed my eyes and looked back at the ground. "Nothing, Okaa-chan."
'What was I supposed to tell her? That my ghost friend Mika died and I have powers of a shinigami now?'
"You can't even look me in the eye and say that." Mom walked towards me and grabbed my chin with her thumb and index finger, forcing me to look at her. "I am your Okaa-chan; now tell me what's wrong now." She said seriously, her faced screwed up in a deep scowl.
"I told you nothing," I sneered, pulling away and glaring at her. "Can't you just leave me alone?"
Her face dropped as well as the hand she held my chin with. Her dark eyes scanned for mine, as if she was trying to find some sort of remorse for what I had said. We stood there in the rain for what seemed like hours, just staring at each other. I had the urge to just fling myself at Mom, cry, and tell her everything that's been happening.
To be fourteen and yearn for that childish parental comfort, it's moronic. It says that I'm an immature coward who can't gather herself together in a tumultuous situation. I thought I had learned this past year from my family drama, but I guess not.
"I'm losing my daughter.." Mom mumbled under her breath, walking past me with downcast eyes. "…Just like I lost my son.."
I stood in place, hearing her footsteps fade away into the rain. I bit my lip and slammed my eyes shut, trying to fight back angry tears.
'How could she compare me to that jerk?'
Karakura Town August 10th 4:00 P.M.
Toshiro barely made the jump to Shizuko's apartment balcony. The small captain fell frustrated at his deteriorating powers. He had deduced that the powers he had left after giving them to Shizuko were draining away because the reishi in the World of the Living wasn't great enough for him to absorb to gain back his powers, where in the Soul Society, he would gain them back in a few weeks.
So now, Hitsugaya was in more of a ditch. He wouldn't be able to return to the Soul Society as if nothing happened as planned. He would either have to return and accept any punishment necessary or get caught and face against a bigger punishment. The captain's pride went against both, but he had a budding idea, though it was insane. But at this point, he was desperate enough to entertain the idea.
Toshiro stepped into the apartment, looking around for Kato. Even his reiatsu detecting abilities were going downhill.
He was soaking wet, little beads of water falling from the drenched locks of his white hair falling onto the floor, his waraji leaving wet tracks in the beige shrug carpet as he walked around, looking for Shizuko.
Toshiro checked the Kitchen and Living room first for Kato, not finding her there. He walked over to the door of her room and lifted his hand to knock on it. Just as his knuckles touched the wood of the door, loud music started blasting from the room, catching Toshiro off guard, making him jump.
The singer was screaming rather than singing, causing a rolling headache to form in the back of Toshiro's head. He rolled his eyes and opened the door, finding Shizuko with the top half of her body hanging off her bed with a towel over her eyes.
"Kato!" Toshiro yelled over the music, but to no avail, he couldn't even hear his own voice over the music. He huffed and walked over to the radio where he assumed where the music was coming from. Not knowing how to work the machine, he found the extension cord that connected it to the outlet and yanked it from the wall.
Shizuko growled and the sound of her music suddenly disappearing and yanked the towel off of her eyes. "What the hell, man?" She yelled at Toshiro angrily. She suspected it to be her mother, but was surprised it was Toshiro.
"You'll blow your ears out like that." Toshiro stated calmly, walking over to Shizuko and raising an eyebrow, looking down at her. "And what are you doing?"
"Hanging upside down so eventually my blood vessels in my brain would rupture and I would die from hemorrhage." She stated flatly, looking back at him.
Toshiro stayed silent for a moment before he forcefully grabbed Shizuko by the arm, and yanked her off the bed. "You're an idiot." He replied in the same manor, sitting down on the edge of the bed, crossing his arms and looking over at her.
Shizuko let out an angry snort and stood up, glaring at Toshiro who simply looked back at her nonchalantly. She knew that leaning over the bed like that would cause brain hemorrhage, but she also knew that it was very painful from the pressure building up in the head. So eventually she would give into the pain and sit herself up right before any damage took place.
"Why do you care?" Shizuko snapped, walking over to her desk chair and sitting down, her eyes never leaving his. "After all, I am just a life ruiner aren't I? Wouldn't you like me dead?"
Toshiro flinched and scowled, shifting his gaze down to the floor. He didn't know what to say, and neither did Shizuko, so they both sat in a silence.
Shizuko had walked home instead of heading back to the shop. She decided it would be best if her and her Mom stayed away from each other for a couple hours so they wouldn't break into harsh arguments at the shop, which would run off costumers.
From the time that Shizuko had been walking home, to the time that she had arrived at home, she had gone through three stages of emotion: anger, depression, and back to anger again. Shizuko was angry at the fact that her Mother would compare her to her older brother. It was a highly offensive insult to her to be compared to him. She then spiraled down into depression that her Mom would actually say such a sensitive thing to her, burning a hole into her self-esteem and letting out a few tears of self-pity. Then, out of all of that, Shizuko somehow managed to blame it all on Toshiro, and grow angry again.
So all-in-all, Kato Shizuko was a emotional teenage mess.
"Gomen…" Toshiro spoke up after awhile, looking over at Shizuko who was caught by surprise.
He sighed, crossing his arms over his chest. "I let my emotion get the best of me, I shouldn't have done that, I'm sorry." It went against Toshiro's pride to apologize, but he knew he had too to gain her trust back, plus, he knew it was wrong to snap at her like that.
She blinked, taking a moment to let it sink in before she sighed as well and dropped her shoulders. "I shouldn't have snapped at you like that either. I'm mad..just not at you.."
The captain raised a white eyebrow and peered at her with curiosity, but he remained silent, waiting for her to continue.
Shizuko noticed Toshiros curious eyes on her, so she let out another sigh and shrugged, looking out the window into the rainy sky.
"I'm the middle child of my family," She started off. "I have one younger brother, his name is Tadao and had one older brother, his name was Ryo." Shizuko remained silent for another moment, pushing a strand of light brown hair behind her ear.
"Ryo had a lot of problems. My parents took him to many doctors and put him in many hospitals to try and get his medicine straight. It would work for awhile, but he hated taking it because he said it 'toned him down too much.'"
Toshiro nodded for her to continue, listening inventively.
"They would put him on one medication after the other, until one day, they finally got the medication right. I was eight and Ryo was fourteen. For three years, we all lived in happiness. Nothing seemed to be wrong, everything was going right…" She began to play with her fingers and her eyebrows were etched together in sadness. "But then his best friend was killed."
"After that, Ryo turned for the worst. He started doing drugs and drinking. He became violent towards my parents and Tadao and I. My parents started to blame each other and became violent towards each other as well. And then, when I thought it couldn't get worse, Ryo was killed because he owed a drug dealer money."
Toshiro widened his eyes a little bit, but continued listening.
"My parents arguing got worse after that, eventually my Outo-san kicked my Okaa-chan out. Outo-san still had pent up anger, which he then took out on me. One day it got so bad that I ran away. That's when everything changed." She shifted in her chair and held her hands tight together.
"My parents stopped arguing and settled a divorce; they had me in therapy for a couple months as well as Tadao. When we were all better, Outo-san and Tadao moved to Tokyo and Okaa-chan and I stayed here…"
Shizuko pulled out a picture from her pocket and opened it up. Her Mother and Father stood happily, their arms around each other and warm smiles on their faces. Tadao held onto his Mothers dress, his big dark brown eyes shining. Ryo had Shizuko up on his shoulders, both of them with huge grins on their faces and the same color eyes shining brightly and innocently.
"I was mad, because Okaa-chan had compared me to Ryo.." She sighed and handed the picture over to Toshiro, who took it and examined the picture.
"That photo was the only family portrait that we have with all of us smiling in it…"
Toshiros face softened and handed the picture back to Shizuko, who put it back in her pocket.
"…Gomen for what happened…" Toshiro said, feeling slightly bad for her.
"It's fine.." She replied, looking over at him and smiling a little. "To be honest, I've calmed down now. Thank you for listening to me, Hitsugaya-san."
"You're welcome." He replied with a slight nod. If one looked closely, they could see the corners of his lips quirk up into a ghost of a smile.
The two remained silent after that, keeping to their own minds. Toshiro had decided to leave Kato alone for the rest of the weekend. He needed time to think on how to train her while his powers were deteriorating, and he needed to think more on his plan.
Shizuko was left alone in her house. When she was telling Toshiro her story, she felt an odd closeness to him, as if they had been friends for years. It also confused her on how she easily told him the story. She had only known him for a couple of days, and she was terrified of him, so why would she tell him the story so easily?
It was beginning to frustrate her as she thought more about it. She had told herself, when Toshiro had given her the frost bite, that she wouldn't trust him as easily and would try to be void of any unnecessary interaction with him. And yet she told him something so personal that she hadn't told to anyone else, not even Akira.
'What's happening to me?' Was Shizuko's constant thought as she tossed and turned in her bed that night.
Karakura Town August 12th 12:00 P.M.
Shizuko and Toshiro were sitting in the class room, eating lunch together. Toshiro had woken Shizuko up and started her training again, making her run laps across the entire training area. She whined and complained about being sore and feeling nauseous so she didn't want to eat lunch, but Toshiro told her if she didn't eat, he would make her work out until she threw up. After that threat, she immediately dove into her food.
The two were eating in a bit of a silence, Shizuko reading her favorite manga while The Captain stared out the window, looking forlorn. He felt so trapped from being in the World of the Living. The air was stuffy, the gigai felt like it was crushing him, and the people were obnoxious. Hell, he even longed for yelling at Matsumoto for not doing her paperwork.
Toshiro was indifferent about Kato Shizuko or her family. Sure, he was willing to admit that what she went through with her older brother was a terrible experience, but it didn't really concern him. He needed to act like he cared around her so he could gain her trust in order for his plan to work. He needed to remove all the hatred she had for him and replace it with a 'bond'.
The plan was to train Shizuko to however high her ability the genius could get her to in however many months he would be in the World of the Living. If he gained any notice that the Soul Society was coming after him, he would somehow trick Shizuko into stabbing him through the chest and transferring whatever power she had into him.
Yes, Toshiro was using her and he knew he was being selfish, but he didn't care. He had Hinamori and his reputation to protect and that's all he cared about.
Shizuko was buried in her manga, feeling the tension of the situation course through her small body. She flipped the page to find out what was about to happen to the main character, but the book was snatched out of her hands. She twitched and swallowed the rest of the white rice that was in her mouth and looked up.
"Oi, what was tha-"Shizuko paused, her blood running cold.
Akira stood in front of her, the manga book being hold up loosely between her fingers. Her hazel eyes were looking down at Shizuko, filled with amusement. Her plump and glossed lips were curled into a wicked grin as she flipped through the book.
"Still reading the Shonen manga I see, Shizu-chan~"She chimed, tossing the book to the side.
Shizuko scowled and glared at Akira, feeling her blood broil. "Don't call me that, Akira." She snarled.
"Aww c'mon, Shizu-chan, it's a nickname that fits a small child like you very well." She bent down, taking some strands of Shizuko's hair and running it through her long, dainty fingers.
"Oi, leave her alone." Toshiro called, taking notice at Akira's taunting. Akira scoffed and looked over at Toshiro, opening her mouth to say something, but then quickly changed gears.
She raised her eyebrows and looked Toshiro up and down, licking her lips. "Well hello there." Akira called seductively, moving a desk over to get a better look at him. She leaned on his desk, flipping a strand of black curly hair behind her shoulder.
"You must be Hitsugaya Toshiro, the new hottie in town," Akira held out her hand as if she expected Toshiro to kiss it. "I'm Yamata Akira, nice to meet you."
Toshiro raised an eyebrow and looked at her as if she was stupid. "Look, just leave Kato alone and we won't have any trouble."
"Don't tell me you're wasting your time with," She jutted her thumb at Shizuko. "That." Shizuko scoffed and rolled her eyes at Akira.
"You smell like cheap furniture and look like a raccoon with all that makeup on." Toshiro retorted flatly.
"E-excuse me?" Akira gasped, putting a hand on her chest in a melodramatic manor.
"That is obviously not your natural hair color, and you cover yourself in so much fake tan you look orange. Please, if anyone is a 'that' it's you. At least Kato doesn't dress herself up to look like a cheap baita."
Shizuko placed a hand over her mouth to cover her laughter. Akira just stared stupidly at Toshiro, slowly taking in everything that he just said. She let out a yell of frustration and stormed out of the room, not able to come up with any sort of retort.
Toshiro just shrugged it off and looked over at Shizuko, who looked at him with a huge grin on her face. "Arigatou, Hitsugaya-san. That's the first time anyone has ever stood up to her!"
He just nodded in response and turned his gaze back to the window. "You're welcome.."
Karakura Town August 12th 3:20 P.M.
Class had ended awhile ago. Kato and Hitsugaya were standing outside of the school, exchanging phone numbers. Toshiro had explained that he wouldn't always be around Kato sometimes, so if she was ever in need of something, he would just be a phone call away.
The two had given each other their phones so they could put in the number. Just as they handed them back to each other, a random student ran straight into Toshiro and Shizuko, causing both of their phones to fly out of their hands and scatter onto the ground.
"Oi!" Both of them called irritably in unison.
"G-gomen!" He apologized, quickly scrambling to his feet and running back in his direction.
Shizuko huffed as she watched him run away, placing her hands on her hips. "Well he was in a hurry.." She mumbled.
Toshiro bent down and picked up the two phones. He didn't take time to notice that both were the same color and same design. He simply put one in his pocket and handed the other to Shizuko, who took it and placed it back in her school bag.
Just then, a beeping noise came from Kato's watch. She checked it and gasped. "Eh! I forgot! We have stocks today!" She cried out, darting for the street that led to the shop.
"Gomen, Hitsugaya-san!" Shizuko called out, waving back to him. "I'll have to continuing the training tomorrow!"
The captain sighed and dropped his shoulders. He rolled his eyes and looked around the court yard to find Kurosaki so they could walk back to his house.
Karakura Town August 12th 3:30 P.M.
I continued running down the street to the shop. My muscles were sore from running all this morning, but I had to be there for stock. Mom was still mad at me for snapping at her the other day, so if I was late, it would make everything ten times worse.
I heard a beeping noise come from my school bag so I slowed down and rummaged through it, picking up my phone. I didn't bother checking the Caller I.D., thinking it would just be Mom, so I opened up my phone and took a deep breath.
"Gomen nasai, Okaa-chan! I swear I'm almost to the shop to help you!"
There was a bit of a silence from the other side.
Gomen-I'm sorry (informal)