This story starts right when Kenpachi introduces himself to Nnoitra, I'm going to try and keep it fairly cannon or cannonish. I have most of the story planned out, and the rest is in my head, all of it though is just awaiting proper write up. I'm going to try and keep it fairly balanced though, but making a character whos arch-type has very little conformity in it (compare the different Hollows or the Espada in their released forms) tends to cause the imagination to go a little wild. How ever, I think I have made a somewhat balanced and unique character for the bleach universe. He only has two unique skills, which tend to lend themselves towards defence. Ahh well you'll see!
Anyway read and review, but most of all enjoy. Not sure how often I'll get to update, but hopefully it isn't too bad, a couple days at the most.
The 2nd Espada.
The sound of metal on metal frightened Orihime deep within her being, she hated it, it was the sound of suffering and pain. But she watched on with rapt awe at this most bizarre and unexpected of scenes. Two men completely opposite in looks and size, but so similar in bearing blades locked facing each other down in the fury of the moment.
With blades locked "What is your name Shinigami?" grunts the longer haired man dressed in white.
"I am the 11th division Captain, Zarakai Kenpachi!" roars the other man wearing the white haori marked with the division symbol on his back, shoving the other man back off his blade.
The feral grin on the other mans face just spread wider then usual; reaching his ears and showing all his teeth it seemed to Orihime. "I am the 5th Espada" he roared back in a voice no less powerful then the other man "Nnoitra Jiruga!" taking another powerful swing with his double crescent-moon bladed zanpakutō.
Orihime watched this impossible scene wondering how it was possible. Why would this man, of all people, come to her rescue? It just didn't make sense. It made less sense then Kurosaki-kun being here! She came here to save them, to spare their lives. Yet they came here anyway, to save her life.
"Ken-chan is happy!" bounced the small child like pink haired Shinigami standing next to Orihime "Ken-chan has someone to fight. It has been a long time since he has had someone to fight." Orihime blinked at Yachiru Kusajishi "Jiggles is in trouble, she's been playing with the baddies. But her friends forgave her and came anyway." Yachiru had her trademark smile that lit her little face up.
She whirled at the sound of Ichigo's faint voice "Kurosaki-kun!" she cried rushing over to him. But before she could summon Ayame and Shun'ō to heal his wounds Ichigo shook his head.
"Not me, heal Nel, she is dieing losing spirit energy like she is. Heal her mask and body. I've been in worse shape then this." He groaned out between clenched teeth.
Orihime nodded, but running through her mind was the worry that this was the worst she had seen him. Broken bones and all, how does he stay conscious she wondered. Reaching Nel she kneeled down over her with her back to fight between Captain Kenpachi and Nnoitra. Calling out to Ayame and Shun'ō she began to heal her. "Sōten Kisshun!"
An orange barrier covered Nel from head to toe and then some. It was much larger then her current body size, which was that of a small child wearing a comical looking horned bone mask on the top of her head in. Yachiru bounced on over to Orihime standing at her side to watch the process with wide curious eyes. The crack in Nel's mask began shrink and fill in, as if it never had existed. This in a way was true, if she understood correctly what it was that she did, rejecting the existence of events.
Nel herself was beginning to change slowly the little child was getting larger, and her clothing was changing to. Yachiru and Orihime watched as her hair, a short and messy green colour grew out longer and spread out around her head. If she was standing it would have reached down below her shoulders. Her face was aging to, her cheek bones grew more prominent, and her nose grew out a little more, giving it a slightly pointed look. The rest of her body was changing as well, into that of a full grown woman. Her clothing was no exception either. At first it was just the sack like rags she had on in her child like form, stretching with her growth. Halfway during the process her clothes began to change shape and colour as well, becoming more form fitting. When the whole process was over Orihime and Yachiru were looking at a full grown woman wearing a pristine white jacket and pants. The only variations in colour to the outfit were the black trim running from collar to waist where the jacket buttoned up, the black sash at her waist. Similar black trim was present on the lower section of her trousers. At her waist was a zanpakutō with a green sheath and hilt shaped like two crescent moons back-to-back.
Letting Sōten Kisshun fade Orihime watched as she opened her eyes and blinked up at her. Soft copper eyes regarded her for a few moments before she raised a gloved hand to rub her forehead. Nel froze instantly, staring at her hand which started to tremble slightly. Instantly the other hand shot up to the mask on the top of her head. Rubbing it over with both her hands as if she was checking for cracks and damager she began to smile widely. The next instant Nel was all over her.
"Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I owe you so much! What did you do to me, how? Thank you!" Nel had her arms wrapped around Orihime chest and shoulders squeezing her for dear life. Nel loosened her grasp up as she watched the battle between the 11th Division Captain and Nnoitra. Nnoitra was well out of his league in his current state, unless he released. The Shinigami was making vicious strikes at him ripping and slashing. His face was a mask of insanity, with a wide grin that rivalled Nnoitra's and he was laughing like a madman. But that's not to say Nnoitra didn't have an effect on the captain he was giving as good as he got.
Orihime squeezed out of Nel's grasp and shuffled over to Ichigo who looked like he was about to pass out from the pains of multiple broken bones, cuts bruises and other abrasions. He was so strong compared to her she lamented. Focusing on him she called "Sōten Kisshun!" and began to heal his wounds. A moment later Nel was at her side watching as Ichigo's wounds began to disappear. First the broken bones had to be taken care of…
Orihime jumped at that sound, like bones shattering. She looked at Ichigo carefully, noticing the slightly puzzled look on his face. Turning her head to look at Nel and Yachiru she followed their gaze towards Zarakai and Nnoitra and gasped. Nnoitra's head was bent at an odd angle, the cause of which was that Captain Kenpachi had his fist holding his sword buried in the side of his face. The three watched him remove his fist then back-hand Nnoitra across the face with his other hand sending him face first into a nearby pile of rubble. Before nonchalantly propping his sword on his shoulder he grunted his disgust at such a weak opponent under estimating him.
"Yay, Ken-chan did you have fun! It looked like you were having fun. He wasn't better then Icchy was he?" Zarakai looked from the twitching man half buried in the rubble who was trying to come to but lacking the coherency to be able to pull it off to Yachiru and her insufferably cute smile, anyone would think she was just playing with her friends thought Orihime.
"Nah, he was a waste, didn't even try. Idiot underestimated me. Hey, Ichigo if you ain't dead get up we're leaving this place." Walking over to where Ichigo was stretched out in front of Orihime "Hey, if he can walk he is well enough. As much as I want to say to hell with it and have a good fight, we have a deadline to make. So can he walk Orihime Inoue?" Before Orihime could even finish nodding at the Captain, he had reached down through the orange shield and grabbed Ichigo by the collar and was beginning to haul him to his feet.
Orihime stands and steps back letting Ichigo get his feet with a look of worry across her face. He smiles at her and nods "Thanks Orihime", she follows his gaze to Nel. Nel was fidgeting, like she wanted to say something but couldn't find the words.
Before she or anyone could say anything Zarakai slaps Ichigo on the back causing him to yelp out in pain. "Right, let's go." Yachiru jumps onto his shoulder with a look of glee. "You to girl climb up." pointing to his shoulder as he addressed Orihime.
"C'mon we don't have all day."
Pulling herself up on his shoulder Zarakai motions for Ichigo and Nel to follow. Nel steals a glance at Ichigo as he run along behind the Shinigami Captain muttering under his breath.
Far outside the alabaster hallways, outside the pristine walls, the disturbance within Las Noches would pass unnoticed to the naked eye, but to those who could detect and monitor spirit energy, it was a veritable hurricane of power, and a battle of epic proportions unlike anything ever seen within those white walls. To this watcher it seemed something most interesting was going on inside. How the watcher hated those who lived on the insides of those walls, it was tempting to go down and see what sort of havoc could be wrought in that bubbling cauldron of chaos. But there were Shinigami down there to. Compared to Hollows reiatsu which was a chaotic mess, Shinigami reiatsu was fluid and stable. It wasn't something the watcher had forgotten. This is what made the whole scene he was sensing within the fortress interesting. Why had the Shinigami attacked? Was it because of the traitors whose minions had forced the watcher to leave Las Noches in the first place?
What ever the reason for the struggle the watcher had no desire to go any closer to the Palace of the Night, there was nothing to gain from…
Eyes narrowing the watcher became very intent on Las Noches.
Searching… where… "I know I felt something…" the watcher muttered there!Shock widened the watchers eyes. I know this reiatsu! She is alive, ALIVE! That's impossible I felt her die. The watcher was very curious now about what was happening in Las Noches.
Nel shifted Ichigo's arm around her shoulders to make it a little more comfortable and moved to catch up to the Shinigami Captain in front of her. They were moving fairly fast, but not quite Sonido or Shunpo as the Shinigami call it she thought to herself Either way it wont take us long to reach the outside at this pace. She moved up alongside the burly Captain on the side Orihime was on. Keeping an eye ahead of her "Ichigo, I'm sorry I, I didn't know. I had forgotten everything. But it doesn't change what you did for me. Thank you. I'm sorry I wasn't more help." sighing "I could've beaten Nnoitra if I hadn't changed back." confessed the former 3rd ranked Espada.
Ichigo regarded her with a half cocked smile "Nel… Neliel… I'm grateful for your help. I would have been dead 3 times over if it wasn't for you." He grinned at her then in the most carefree way he could.
"Just Nel is fine." A squeak on her other side cause her turn her attention to Orihime who was struggling to stay attached to Kenpachi's shoulder. She looked utterly ridiculous hanging there with her size, and in that long dress. "Orihime are you alright?"
"Yes, Neliel-sama, it's just a little bouncy."
Touché Nel confided to herself when looking at the poor girl she must be in pain a fair bit. "Just Nel is fine." she directed at the girl. "Orihime, though I'm glad to have met you, Ichigo and his friends, I was wondering why you came here."
A pained expression filled Orihime's face. She looked like she was almost in tears "To protect my friends." she sobbed, Zarakai grunted "I had to or…" she swallowed "or Ulquiorra-sama would have killed them, he could have. He would have! Ulquiorra-sama is strong I didn't know what to do. He… he… I was going to destroy the Hōgyoku. You all came for me…" she was babbling now. He must have really terrified her.
"Orihime," The girl looked at her with a face a picture of misery and guilt. "It's 'that bastard Ulquiorra' not Ulquiorra-sama, you're far too polite. Your friends won't let you be taken by him again." Yachiru companionably bopped Orihime on the head.
"We're here." The Shinigami Captain stopped just short of a small group. Nel recognised Ichigo's friends, Ishida and Chad but not the rest of the group who had to be more Shinigami. Three were wearing the same white haori as Zarakai. I guess that makes them Captains, looking at the rest of the group what about the other ones though.
From behind Ichigo's friends came the most unlikely pair to be seen with a group of Shinigami. Crying tears of joy the pair of Hollows careened straight into Nel and Ichigo driving all four into the ground and a cry of pain from Ichigo.
"Dondo! Pesche! You're both okay! I'm so glad." she laughed.
"Freaking idiots, get off of me!" yelled Ichigo stuck beneath Nel who had both Dondo and Pesche on top of her. Gasping Nell jumped up and spun around to help Ichigo stand. Dondo and Pesche just kept rambling on about how they were so happy to see Nel-sama again to guard them from the evil Shinigami.
"Orihime? Orihime! Thank God you're alright." Ichigo's Quincy friend Ishida greeted Orihime with a light smile, Chad just nodded and mumbled much the same as Ishida, only with less words. "Nel is that you, what happened? Ichigo what did you do to Nel?" the Quincy arched an accusing eyebrow at Ichigo
"What, why would you assume I did anything, jackass."
"Usually when things happen it's your fault, idiot."
Drawing near them the female Shinigami Captain announced "Time is short, so we best depart."
Nel was torn she didn't know what to do. Staying anywhere near Las Noches would be far too dangerous. She and her companions would need to move deep into Hueco Mundo if they were to hide from Aizen and the surviving Espada. What else is there to do, it's not like we could go to… spinning to face Ichigo and his friends she announced with barely contained intensity "I'm coming!"
"What?!" the poleaxed look on his face was priceless.
"I'm coming with you to the living world. I can't stay here, it's to dangerous now." The announcement hit the group like a bomb, with silence being the fallout.
"Nel-sama, don't leave us!"
"This cannot be allowed."
Instantly the group divided itself into two camps, those supporting Nel included Ichigo, Orihime, Chad, Rukia and Renji, as well as another male Shinigami who seemed to be with the female Captain. Everyone else baring Dondo and Pesche, and the four Captains who were standing in between the two groups was against the idea.
"I don't give a damn but she kept Ichigo's weak ass alive, and she might be good for a fight herself. So she can come along for all I care." growled out the 11th Division Captain.
"Yay Ken-chan!" sounded out an exuberant voice coming from somewhere on his back.
The weird looking Captain with the odd mask put forth "She may have useful… data… on the Arrancar and the Espada." Nel was a little dubious about the man's intentions particularly with the looks a number of the others were giving him.
"She appears to have earned the trust of her supporters. Nor is she what I expected from a Hollow. I can see no issues with her coming with us, four Captains should be able to deal with her if she does prove to be untrustworthy. Lastly time is short we can discuss this further later." The quiet tone of the female Captain drew the attention of everyone there. The other Captain with the odd hair noodles was giving Nel a look cold enough that could have rivalled Ulquiorra and didn't say a word.
Before Dondo and Pesche could say another word Nel turned to them "Do you wish to come? I'll protect you."
"Yes, Nel-sama!" Dondo and Pesche said together "We will be good Nel-sama!" They both seemed so proud that she was back to normal. She did note the twin looks of abstract horror printed over two of Ichigos friends faces though from the corner of her eye. It seems that two of them spent a little to much time with my friends Nel giggled to herself.
The cold faced Shinigami stepped forward "No, if she is to come she comes alone. Her… pets stay here. There is too much risk involved in bringing just her, let alone two extras."
"Damn you Byakuya Kuchiki!" growled Ichigo
"No he is right Ichigo, it is risky. I gu…" she was cut off by Dondo placing a hand on her right shoulder and Pesche placing one on her left.
"Go Nel-sama, we'll be fine here. You can help them. We can hide out till you come back." Pesche sounded so serious. She hadn't seen him like this for a long time.
"We can hide in our super secret great desert brothers' hideout, don'tcha know."
Both gave her a shove sending her to stumble back a couple of steps. "I'll come back for you guys, as soon as I can." They both nodded at her and stepped back out of the way as some of the Shinigami were finishing setting up something looking a lot like two sticks shoved in the ground. As soon as the last Shinigami stepped back the world appeared to bend and rip apart opening into what looked like a black void. Garganta. It was the void between worlds that Hollows used to transit between them. She could have opened a portal for them without the need for this device, but decided again against saying anything.
Monitoring safely from a distance, the watcher, observed the Shinigami gathering. But the Shinigami themselves were not the watchers focus. The woman with the pale green hair commanded the watchers attention. Nel… it's been a while, but Shinigami? I wouldn't have expected that. The watcher looked towards Las Noches wondering how they would take this apparent defeat, surely not lying down. Hueco Mundo was not a forgiving place. Death came easy here, but vengeance was swifter.
Eyeing the peculiar Garganta that the last of the Shinigami were passing through the watcher came to a decision. By the time it was closing the watcher had a plan of action and it began with those two... "Dondo, Pesche, it's been a while." They both spun at the voice that was suddenly behind them. "We're going to have a little chat.
Hope you enjoyed it, I'll hopefully have the next chapter up soon, in a day or so.