Original story concept belongs to Destria Cosplay and it with their permission that I am able to do this story in more novelized form.
Bleach is owned and belongs to Tite Kubo
The pre-dawn light was painting the dark, black sky with a light purples just over the horizon, indicating that the sun would soon be rising in full. The morning mist from the river he was walking next was receding but a trace amount still remained. Not that it mattered to the young man. No, what mattered to him was not the beautiful scenery of nature against the city scape but something else.
The young fifteen year old had spikey orange hair with slightly tanned skin and deep brown eyes that currently held sorrow within them. He stood decently tall, for a young Japanese man, at one hundred and seventy-four centimeters, just slightly above five foot, eight inches. Currently he was wearing a high collared, short sleeved, white shirt that had an orange band going around the chest, and a blue cross where the heart would be, that also had longer blue sleeves attached to it. The neckline opened up to just show the top of his chest and also exposed it slightly to the cold Autumn, morning air. Green jeans were ragged where his shoes were, whather by design or constant use was unknown.
This young man was Kurosaki Ichigo.
And on his back he was a young woman who was around the same age as him. Her large eyes were an amber that reminded of of the leaves of Autumn. She wore a school uniform that had a tan overcoat, a brown and black pladed skirt. A red bolo-like necktie indicated the year she was in, but he didn't know what that was. She had shiny purple hair that was currently falling down to the top of her shoulder blades. She was the Shinenju, a being that wasn't supposed to exist. The Shinenju was an object that is composed entirely of memories of Souls that have lost their way in the Dangai, the realm connecting the realms. These memories merged into one object and eventually returned to the Human World and attracted being calleds Blanks,souls who were without memories and were lost in between the realms connecting the World of the Living and Soul Society.
She was nothing more than a Memory Rosary. Even her Zanpukuto, a sword that represents one own soul, was not truly hers but that of one who had been lost to the Dangai.
Her name was Senna. Normally she would have her hair up in a ribbon but that had been blown away right before...
Right before she had used the the last of the power of the Blanks, to destroy The Valley of Screams, the realm in between where the Blanks resided, in order to keep the realms from crashing into each other and had saved all of them. The World of the Living. Soul Society. And quite possibly any other attached realms.
No, that's not right, Ichigo thought to himself as he went down a flight of stairs to access the main street next to the river trail. She did it so she could save me... She even said it herself... He should have had the urge to bite his lip in frustration, but instead he was feeling something else. Something that he hasn't felt in a long time.
"Hey... Ichigo," Senna said softly from his back breaking him from his thoughts.
"Yeah?" Ichigo replied without looking back and focusing a bit less on the task at hand. The crossing light lit up from him to cross the street.
"Where are we going?"
"To the graveyard," was his solemn answer, no longer needing to stop for lights or streets as he started onto the path to lead him to his destination. "You wanted to know if you existed right? We'll find out the answers there."
Ichigo truly did his best not to notice how Senna was starting to lose her warmth nor the fact that as every second ticked by, she was slowly starting to become lighter and lighter. Both of their hearts were heavy with the inevitable fate that they knew was coming. Neither wanted to admit it out loud though.
"What for idiot?"
"For... Everything, I guess..."
"Don't apologise idiot. It doesn't sound like you."
Senna had come into his life like a hurricane and tooka hold of him like a storm. Only one other had managed to so that so far but unlike the other one, when she got kidnapped, he didn't go to rescue her out of a sense of duty or a debt he owed her. He went after her because he wanted to. No one else had seen her almost break down when she started to question her very being, one which may have been a lie to everyone.
Everyone but him.
He was the only one who had seen her for being her and not for what she was.
He truly cared for her in a way he didn't care for anyone else. Arisawa Tatsuki was his oldest friend and they both knew each other in a way no one else did. But this type of caring was different. His twin little sisters, Yuzu and Karin, he would storm into Hell for. He would slay dragons and kill gods to keep them safe. But he was their older brother and that was more of a kinship type of caring.
This... this was different.
He didn't know what it was and his heart, both of their hearts, were dreading what was to come.
The memory of when Ichigo had brought her home played in his head. How his father, Goat-Face, was shocked that he had brought a girl home to spend the night. How he practically was already thinking of how he had another daughter in his family, this one possibly giving him grandkids. How Karin was the only one who was seemingly uninterested, she hid it well but he was the older brother for a reason. She may not have been nosey but she was a little bit happy that Ichigo might have had a girlfriend now. He only noticed because of the way her eyes kept flickering between the two of them. How Yuzu was happy and curious beyond all belief but hid it under being polite. Of how Yuzu and his father were trying to spy on the two of them while they talked in Ichigo's room.
Of how out of everyone he had met... he didn't mind her being on his bed. And he really did disliked it when other people where on his bed.
"Can we go on the ferris wheel next time?"
"What kind of a question is that?"
"Yeah... We can."
Next time, he thought to himself. There won't be a next time.
And that truly broke his heart.
Senna had known the consequences of what she did. If she didn't use her powers over the Blanks, then the world would end. But if she did use her powers, then she would fade from existence. Back into Nothingness. Stuck between a rock and a hard place.
No... That wasn't right.
That would mean that the 'rock' and the 'hard place' were of equal value. This was different. Senna had only seen two options before her. Option one being a world where Ichigo died and option two being a world where Ichigo lived.
For Senna the choice was easy.
It was option two for her, Ichigo thought as his footsteps were the only sound all around them. But if I was in similar position with Mom and Grand Fisher... he didn't finish that thought because he knew the answer already. He would always choose the lives of others over his own. But he finally knew what he was feeling.
Powerlessness. His inability to do anything and to watch on helplessly as others saved him... died for him. First with his Mother protecting him from Grand Fisher as a child. Next with Rukia when she saved him and his family from a Hollow on that fateful night he had become a Shinigami. And now with Senna...
"You promise right?" He did his best to ignore how her voice sounded like it was breaking. How it almost sounded like she was on the verge of tears. How he kept a blank face no matter what was about to happen.
"You promise, right?"
"Yeah, I promise."
"It's a promise then."
Ichigo didn't know what it was, but he felt something take a hold of him, down to his very soul. As if a seed was planted.
He stopped before the gate of the graveyard for a second before he opened it up, as respectfully as he could for one should respect the dead in Ichigo's personal belief, with his foot. He walked down a familiar path that they had taken just the day prior. The Sun was closer to peeking out now and the shadows of the gravestones were starting to become long.
"Hey... Ichigo," Senna spoke up when they reached a familiar spot.
"Fourth stones from the end."
"Okay." He made a slight turn and found the stone she was talking about.
"I was alive once... Living in this town. I must've had a family. I know it."
"Hey Ichigo... It's all blurry and I can't see right... is there a name?" Ichigo felt her bury her head into the shoulder and tighten her hold around his neck. And he read the names in his head.
They say that ignorance is bliss and he supposed that this was one of those times. Not out of spite or the need to belittle her, but out of the fact that he did care for her and did not want to see her defeated face if he told her the truth He wanted to give her closure, even if it was a lie... so no matter how much longer she had left, he would still care for her.
Ichigo simply said, "Yeah... There is."
"You used to live in this town and you had a family."
"i'm so happy Ichigo," he could feel her grip tighten once again. Ichigo felt her tears on his back. He could see the outline of her arms start to glow a faint orange that reminded him of the Autumn leaves. He could feel her body become significantly lighter now that she had become.
He could feel her Spiritual Pressure fading back to Nothingness.
"It's a promise right?"
"Promise that I'll see you again."
"Don't be dumb. Of course you will," and slowly the seed that was planted started to grow.
"Make sure you don't forget."
And when dawn finally broke, she was gone with the Autumn wind.
He couldn't get a reply in when he felt the last of her weight disappear. His arms dropped down to his side lifelessly and he just fell to his knees. And for the first time since his mother had died, Ichigo cried. It was just a single tear but it still held all of his feelings within it. Pain. Sorrow. Rage at himself. And most importantly, the loss of a loved one.
The sound of footsteps behind him would have caught his attention, but he knew that they were already there. They had been following him since he had taken Senna from the bridge where she used the last of her powers but they had enough respect for him to give him and Senna the space that the both of them needed alone.
"Ichigo," Rukia's voice sounded out. All ichigo did was turn his head her way and stare into her violet eyes. "The Blanks energy is running out. Everything about the Shinenju... About Senna, will disappear from our memories." Ichigo could feel his heart stop for a second when he heard that. But he didn't let it show on his face. He just kept a neutral expression own to hide his own pain. "One cannot remember that which was never supposed to exist in the first place."
Ichigo stood up and faced toward the rising sun, listening to the sound of the wind rustling through the trees and the oranges and reds of the leaves.. "Even if it's just for a few more seconds, but for now... I can still hear her voice." After a brief moment of silence, he put his hand into his pockets and started to walk towards the entrance to the graveyard. Where Ichigo was going... he wasn't sure. All he knew was that he wanted to be away from this place for now.
"Hollow! Hollow! Hollow!" When he made it outside, with Rukia right behind him, the alert and flashing light of his badge drew his attention to it.
"GAAH!" Rukia kicked him from behind as he fell flat on his face.
"Ichigo! Why did you drag us to a graveyard?"
"What? You were the one who brought us here you midget!" The familiar acquaintance of her foot met his face.
"Stupid Berry!" she said with a huff. "Come on. Let's get that Hollow already," Rukia started to run off into the direction of the Hollow.
With a huff of his own, Ichigo ran after her with the Autumn wind on his heels.
Hey everybody, good to see ya!
For those of you who Follow me, thanks for taking a look. For all you new comers, please and sit while I retell a damn good story. This chapter isn't as flushed out as I would normally do it, but there were a few things that I wanted to keep based on the original
I don't have much to say about this aside from Thanks to Destria for letting me do this and that you guys should check out the original works if this has interested you. And that this is one of my favorite parings in Bleach with one of the best girls in the series.
Read, Review, and Enjoy