Prologue: We who are Forgotten

...it is sad, of course, to forget.
But it is a lonely thing, to be forgotten.
To remember when no one else does.

The phantom city lay shrouded in mist, early morning had yet to fade the pulsing moon of four-points shedding pale lavender light into the narrow ways and light castle walls of Tsukikage. Beyond the highest window and wavy panes of ancient glasswork, life stirred, souls awoke, each greeting the dawn flushing in the east with mingled greetings.

"Such a lovely morn," whispered a slender girl, her eyes of clear mineral blue relished taking in the sight of glided rays falling onto her face from the thrown back curtains. Her name is: Takara Shimizu, as per custom in this land, names are called by first rather than the last as in the place where they were born.

"I wonder if anybody else is seeing this?" Takara wondered aloud as was habit.

In fact there were others watching the shy sun rising, a young girl lounging on the slanted rooftop of Tsukikage's highest tower, frowned slightly, "another day. Another step closer—"

"Oh, quit being so mysterious, Kei!"

Lilac eyes not so unlike the fading sky above, turned, narrowing, "Kagami. Even you must feel it."

He ran his hand through ash blond locks that had grown longer in the last half year, his face turned up to the sky as if searching for the answer to her question, "the end to our isolation?"

Kei watched him steadily, "perhaps more than that."

They were a part of the Juppongatana: ten swords in the language native to almost all. Rebels called by some in the other worlds; protectors of a world abandoned said more, and yet still others proclaimed the four captains ranked in order of strength to all surpass that of the Gotei 13.

No one knew where this had started up. Survey teams sent to review the area beyond the graylands reported nothing amiss except for that of a simple fact: no Hollows existed in that world. It was terra incognita to most, an unknown land of large and small continents watched over by guardians nobody had ever seen.

But that was a lie. Two had been seen and by a curious member of the survey team gone off by himself to explore a patch of peculiar-looking flowers.

"Beautiful, aren't they?"

He was surprised by the gentle female voice, "yes," he agreed, breaking the stock of one and standing, offered it to the girl, "I've never seen anything quite like them before."

She brushed it against her lips, "that's because they only grow in the sunken garden below Tsukikage. I planted these here…" She watched him mouth the name of the fabled castle, his eyes widening, "the—then you are—"

"…for the children. Yes. I am one of them." Her smile became sweeter, "pity it was your fate to cross my path here. I so wished to not meet any of you Seireitei scum. My assumption for coming here simply that of enjoying the flowers…so please," her hand touched the hilt of sword at her waist, a large crescent moon perched atop the guard, "don't be upset with me for this."

A slight clack issued forth as an inch of blade slid out from the scabbard, "take him to hell for me. Shakuranentai." It was at this point where his story took on legendary proportions. Wind gusted in a tightly controlled funnel, scattering the red plumes before they reached him. His savior came forth as a narrow aesthetically featured woman, her straight brown/black hair bound in a severe knot atop her head.

"Kamikaze," the newcomer spoke, her hand snapping briskly out, between two long fingers a fan extended into pleats. The wind came from there. "Don't you think that's a bit of overkill? Sending him to hell, I mean?"

"Atari, oh Atari. You just don't get it do you?" the first girl sighed, a look of pure unadulterated innocence coming onto her face, "we were created to destroy. Even now I feel it. The call to burn everything to ashes to leave nothing alive."

"That's just your innate bloodlust acting up."

The survey team member, stared from one woman to other, his hands shaking on the bound hilt of dark blue above a tear-shaped guard, "R-R-Ryusui no Ugoki!"

"See? What'd I tell you?" the girl with lilac eyes, swiped the air neatly with her palm, "Hado…63, I'm feeling merciful. Raikoho."

The woman called Atari by the other, "you missed him by a foot," pointed out the obvious. To which the girl replied snappishly, "his fucking Zanpaku-to deflected the blast! I'll get—" "Let me," Atari moved swiftly, silently, vanishing in a puff of wind then appearing beside our narrator. "Do you know who we are? Tell me."

His eyes bulged, "r-r-rebels."

"I see. And?"

There was the soft click of her fan closing and he felt somewhat safer, "dissidents who disobeyed Seireitei's laws." No other threatening motions followed so he went on, "and deserved to be cast out." The woman's jaw tightened, her dark eyes flashed once then became glassy pools, "deserved to be cast out?"

He nodded dumbly to her rhetorical question.

"So then…nothing has changed," her smoky voice dropped an octave of two. Atari glanced sadly to the other's still form, "for now. You're right."

"Sui—"

"They all deserve to die. Reppu Geki."

The tree behind him split in two, the trunk cleaving beneath the blinding force of the gale strike. He screamed and dove under the crashing branches, leaves snapping briskly like many flags in the wind. "So you think it's right what Soul society did?" Kazeatari advanced, her face a mask of deadly calm.

"Y-Yes—I mean—N-No! Plea—" his words became a torrent of screams, slashes crisscrossing his chest and back.

"You who live there, you who revile us. Remember."

"A-Anything!"

Atari's look suddenly became fierce, "remember the name Juppongatana. It is we who are forgotten, we who live here, we to whom this land belongs…finish him off, Keiko."

"With pleasure," the other smirked, "incinerate him, Maouen!"

The story had been changed so much that no one knew the exact truth. Only of the existence of a group of powerful Shinigami with greater strength than that of Seireitei's finest. The finest that even Ichigo Kurosaki had been able to defeat…so the question was: is there anyone stronger than him? And if in combat could he himself taste bitter defeat at the hands of a member of the Juppongatana?

S.1 The Phantom City in the early Dawn

It was of consequence that the world of Assiah with its countries and population so recently being liberated from the scourge of the Hollows, had its own legends concerning the timeframe from roughly a hundred and eleven years before. A great battle had been fought and won, the stronghold of the victorious became oddly enough called: The phantom castle.

At certain settings of the sun, in the distance upon a plain, rising from the ground in mirage-like splendor rose the stone castle of light gray. For an hour hence this vision could be seen, the people of Assiah coming from miles away to lay eyes filled with wonder at this unexplainable occurrence.

"When will they stop staring at us?"

Kagami heard the note of annoyance in the girl's tone, and smiled faintly, "I suspect Tsukikage is much like an attraction to them." They were on the southern side, looking out over the crenellated ramparts to the far gathering of gawking humans. Kei scowled, "I'm getting rather tired of it. We're not here to be any sort of spectacle for them."

"Just grin and bear it." He leaned forward onto his crossed arms, seeing beyond the distance into another place, "maybe you should wave to them."

"You're kidding, right?"

"Incoming!" a third voice joined in from above. Kagami leapt back from the low wall as curved gusts of wind shuddered up the length, a woman breezily stepping onto the flagstones, her hair loose today and billowing around her familiar face.

"Kazeatari! How many—"

"Atari!" Kei cried, the hip length surcoat of jet-black swirling around her legs, "where were you?"

"—times do I have to tell you? Not to drop down suddenly like that?" Kagami grumbled. The woman snapped her fan briskly shut, spinning once on her heels to face the awestruck crowd. Her hand flew in the air once and she vigorously waved, blowing three kisses in an arc, "thank you; my adoring fans! I love you too!"

A chorus of cheers erupted though surely they could not hear her words.

"They didn't gather for you," he was obliged to point out, to which Kazeatari grabbed his arm suddenly, "give them a show!"

"What?"

"Show them…" she bit her lip, thinking; "Holy Dragon water."

Kei had been silent, but now she stepped forward, lilac eyes alight, "how about it, Kagami? Dragons of water exploding from a wreath of flames, or is that too showy?" One eyebrow rose, his consternation rising, "you know you two as a team are supremely dangerous persuaders. Fine," he sighed, "I'll do it. If only so you two will quit bugging me."

Atari's dark eyes sparkled, "you're a darling," she kissed his cheek, having to only tilt her head at an angle to brush lightly tanned skin of a smooth face, "always."

"I can't believe I got railroaded into doing this."

(*)*)*)*)*)Living world(*)*)*)*)*)

"Shut up, fool. What were you going to do—refuse?"

"Be quiet, Rukia. You know what I mean." Amber eyes glanced her way, narrowed in meaning. Their knock at the Shoten door was answered a moment later, "Why, Kurosaki-kun and Kuchiki-san, I didn't expect to see you here so early!" as usual Kisuke Urahara's attitude was chipper, he took in the their serious expressions, waving them in, sobering slightly.

"What can I do for you two?"

Rukia looked to Ichigo, giving him a not so light shove of impatience, "tell him." Kisuke seated himself down; glancing from one to the other, "tell me, what?"

"I—I—I've been having these dreams. Of the same girl; night after night, in different locations, different scenes, with different people. People I've never seen before."

"Oh? And this girl," shadowed eyes flickered to the petite raven-haired Shinigami sitting pensive against one wall, "do you know who she is?"

"No. That's the thing…I don't ever remember seeing her anywhere. I know she's a Shinigami; she carries a sword-one with a large sickle moon on top of another lying down. But I—we've asked around and no one so far matches that description."

"So, why come to me?"

"Because somebody suggested that you might know something," Rukia spoke up, tired of the hesitance in which Ichigo edged around the subject, "we think she's associated with the rebel Shinigami group Juppongatana."

Kisuke grew quiet then finally shrugged. "Describe her to me."

Here was where it was the hardest for him to speak, "tawny hair past her shoulders. Large purple eyes of a pale lavender shade rimmed by black around the edges, fine skin, luscious pink lips," his tone changed, "she…I…don't know. It feels as though I know her. I feel so strange sometimes, in the world of my dream, the girl looks past me as if I'm not there. I've never communicated with her, though I've tried. Her name…Kei—" Ichigo shook his head briskly, "I don't know the rest. So what do you think?"

A smirk stretched slowly across the Shoten owner's mouth, "it sounds like little Ichigo finally has a crush on somebody!"

"I DO NOT!"

"Doesn't it, Kuchiki-san?" Kisuke implored to Rukia, who nodded gamely, pronouncing her judgment, "It sure does."

"I said I DO NOT HAVE A CRUSH ON ANYONE! PERIOD!"

"Well the way you described her…I've never heard you speak about anyone like that. So what can I say?" Kisuke shrugged innocently, enjoying watching the mixed emotions passing over the deputy Shinigami's face. He spluttered indignantly then plopped down suddenly, glowering fiercely, "well?"

"Well, what?"

"Do you know her?"

Kisuke heard the secret hope faint in the teenager's voice, wondering at it, "maybe. I think I might have something—I'll go get it."

Relieved, Ichigo heard the scuffle in the hallway in the back and the sound of a door sliding shut faraway. Was it in his room? Soon enough he came back, waving away the offer of tea from Ururu. "Here we are," carefully Kisuke slid out a pane of glass from a square frame behind which a faded scroll drawing resided. Setting aside the seemingly ancient artifact, he took out something that had lain against it. A photo halfway singed at the edges by blackened powder like soot from a fire, he turned it over to reveal the image of a young girl in her teens.

It was a candid shot as one hand was raised holding back locks of darkish gold hair, her eyes were looking past the camera's focus, her lips parted as if near to saying something. Kisuke handed it to Ichigo hesitantly, seeming to be loath to let it leave his grasp.

"It—It's her," he said softly, staring into the tiny image, "Gods…she's so beautiful."

It was Rukia's turn to stare; what was wrong with him?

"Yamamoto Keiko. Niece to the Soutaichou of Soul society." Kisuke clarified before anyone could ask.

"W-When was this taken?" suddenly he had to know.

Over a hundred years ago. A hundred and eleven to be precise, she disappeared after a certain incident involving the execution of a man I knew. They say she ran away—"

"Where?"

Kisuke paused at the forcefulness present in Ichigo's tone, "I don't know. Assiah, it was assumed, the fourth world. She's probably long dead by now."

He seemed to deflate, "oh…hey, Urahara?"

"Hmm?"

"How much…do you want for this?" he meant the picture, knowing the ex Taichou too greedy to pass up a sale. "Ichigo—" Rukia began but he ignored her. He had some spare cash at home, an allowance from goatface…since it wasn't in perfect condition he couldn't be expected to pay much for it.

So he was surprised at the flatness Kisuke spoke to him with, "it's not for sale." He took it back quickly from Ichigo's lax fingers.

"Wha-What?"

"Exactly what I said, Kurosaki-kun."

"But—but you sell everything! What's one charred photograph of a person you're not related to—"

"Why do you want it so badly?" Kisuke turned the tables on him. Unable to answer, he helplessly watched the photo be replaced behind the scroll and frame.

"I don't know," he said finally, not even able to understand it himself, "I just don't know why."

AN: :) reviews are appreciated.

Note: 9.12.2020 Edited and combined Ch.0, Ch.1. Ch.2

Please note: Divergence from original Bleach canon is assured as are the outcome of certain battles. Some canon characters will not die as in canon and the mythos of this story are that the Zanpaku-to were created by the Elementals thousands of years before. They make 'contracts' or 'covenants' with the Shinigami before the Shinigami are even born; to serve them as weapons. These Zanpaku-to then change form from their original manner of katana to whichever form suits the Shinigami during shikai-bankai release.

-Also, this section is merely for reference and ISN'T required reading-

-ShiKai Characters and Glossary terms-

Chimahou: more commonly referred to as Blood magic operates under the principal, if the body forgets, the memory is within the blood. Its uses include viewing memories held by an opponent's blood- an ability only a Master of it like the Fire Elemental, can do with ease.

Tokimahou: Referred as Time magic. Orihime Inoue's Soten Kishun is a lesser manifestation of this ancient magic. However, unlike a true spatial reversal; the Soten Kishun is fatally flawed as to its use on an Elemental's body.

Terra Incognita: Latin for Unknown Land.

Terra Justitia: A phrase meant to mock the Living world. Latin for Just Land.

Soulless blades: Unlike Zanpaku-to whom have a material entity attached to them, the swords created by Kagami are without, so they can be wielded by anyone.

A list of them follows:

Hokuto Shichisei: North Seven stars. A sword of healing, transmuting ambient reishii through the Quincy cross embedded in its guard to the tang emitted a soft blue glow when recharged. Is most effective for healing almost all wounds.

Hakuya: White Night. This sword's tang is made of crushed down Seki-sekki ore and an infusion of Chimahou within its core. Originally forged for Aizen Sosuke. Properties: unknown..

Gekkouha: Moonlight. This sword is currently imperfect, lacking its final piece.

Tenma Mukurode: Given as Demon Corpse-hand. This fearsome sword corrupts living flesh by releasing a Neuro-toxin upon contact with an enemy. It is the only one of the soulless blades to have a consciousness linked to that of its wielder.

Shinteichou: Ancient name for the Generals of the Black Army: the translation is simply given as God-Captain.

Sursum Corda: Latin for Lift up your hearts/ Take courage.

Provehito in Altum: Motto of the First Division. Latin for Reach for the Heights.

Multi sunt vocati, pauci vero Electi: Latin for Many are called, but few are chosen

(*~*)OC character theme songs~ More to be added at a later date

Kei: Disturbia-by Rihanna/and/ I'm so sick-by Flyleaf

Kagami: I shall believe-by Matt Brouwer/and/This is your life-by Switchfoot

Kazeatari: Karinui-by Mamiko Noto

Hana Retsu: Boulevard of Broken Dreams-by Green day

Kyou Retsu: Break your knees-by Flyleaf (on the deluxe edition CD)

Kanzaki: Sea of faces-by Kutless

Takara Shimizu: Shine-by Anna Nalick

Akashi Osore: Breakdown-by Breaking Benjamin

Touda (reflecting on Kei): Fully alive: by Flyleaf (the video version)

Reflecting on the Juppongatana as a whole (present day) Meant to Live-Switchfoot

Ren Mimasaka: I'm only happy when it rains: by Garbage

Kei to Ichigo: Again-by Flyleaf/or/ The world around you-by Papa Roach

Zangetsu and his Kouseitan'i *Kei*: Bitter Sweet- by Flyleaf and/or All I need- Within Temptation

Juppongatana main theme: Never too late- Three days Grace/and/ Attack-Thirty seconds to Mars/or/New Divide-Linkin Park

ShiKai Prequel : Stand In The Rain themes

Facing the betrayal of the First Shinigami and the subsequent others whom followed: No more sorrow-Linkin Park

Reflecting on the exiled Shinigami who later become the Juppongatana: Stand in the rain-by Superchick

During the early chapters: World so Cold-12 Stones

Toya Amakusa: Home-12 Stones

Kei: Nobody's Home-Avril Lavigne

Character facts:

-Kei-

Birthday- October 31st (Halloween)

Zodiacal sign: Scorpio

-Hana-

Birthday: August 6th

Zodiacal sign: Leo

-Kyou-

Birthday: August 7th (Kyou was born at midnight just seconds after Hana at 11:56 PM)

Zodiacal sign: Leo

-Kanzaki-

Birthday:

Zodiacal sign: Capricorn

(*~*)

Juppongatana Soul reapers

First Division: positions available, Defenders of the realm concerned mainly with defense.

Captain position, Raven Kanzaki

Lieutenant position: Hisrio Shihoin

Third seat: Akashi Osore

Fourth seat gender either

Vizard Fifth seat: Ren Mimasaka

Sixth seat: Mai Matsukaze

Seventh seat gender either

Second Division: known as the Scientific and observation district, positions available.

Captain position, Kagami Nanatsu

Lieutenant position, Kimiko Shimizu (no relation to Takara of third)

Third seat, Dani Snow

Fourth seat: Jinteki Eremiyasho

Fifth seat: Samuel Cain

Sixth seat gender either

Seventh seat gender either

Third Division: offense and defense warriors welcome, positions available.

Captain position: Toya Amakusa

Lieutenant position: Takara Shimizu

Third seat: gender either

Fourth seat: Keith Rolston

Fifth seat gender either

Sixth seat gender either

Seventh seat gender either

Fourth Division: Only offense warriors need apply, similar to Eleventh Division of S.S but Kido attacks may apply also.

Captain position: Keiko Yamamoto

Lieutenant position: Zoë Elbe

Arrancar Third seat: Aki Shikouten

Fourth seat: Atrix Crusellas

Fifth seat gender either

Sixth seat gender either

Seventh seat: Kazura Ichinomiya

Fifth Division: offense and defense warriors needed, similar to Third Division, positions available.

Captain position: Kazeatari Namaiki

Lieutenant position: Rizu Sakurai

Third seat: Seijin Maru

Fourth seat: Hana Retsu

Fifth seat: Kyou Retsu

Sixth seat gender either

Seventh seat gender either

~~~Facts about the filled positions and the four Captains of first, second, fourth and fifth:

First: Raven Kanzaki, former Quincy General. In Soul society was rising in the ranks of the Repentance Guards whose duty is to watch over the Senzaikyu. Saved Gin Ichimaru by shooting a Quincy arrow when Shoukyaku failed…then his secret was out. Personality: an amateur scientist, Kagami takes his strength into account, and then he is made leader of the rogue Shinigami group: Juppongatana.

Lieutenant of First: Hisrio Shihoin. A former Noble, his family was a distant relation to one of the four clans and as such enjoyed a distinction not afforded to others. Hisrio was taken into his cousin's service early on but never witnessed much combat do to his status not because of a lack of ability. Knew Kagami by name never face. Was involved in a certain incident of ill-repute and was cast aside as a disgrace. By proxy he fled during the same time as Kanzaki though wasn't a part of his group. In the decimated City of Apollonia near the Southern region, he was saved-by the very man whom he had blamed his fall from power-who was none other than Raven Kanzaki. Hisrio had been the very same Shinigami put in charge of the execution Squad dispatched to eliminate the Quincy from the Guard ranks. Hisrio's failure at the cost of a severe wound from an arrow nearly killed him outright. However it was his survival that insured his demotion and subsequent exile. The decision wasn't his cousin's to make...

Was eventually driven to accept Kanzaki's offer of a truce and joined him, though in the forming of the Juppongatana, was forced to accept a lesser position in terms of strength to the one who was once his subordinate.

Zanpaku-to: Houou-Hime. Personality: Arrogant, though highly intelligent, believes that everyone should drop what they're doing when he speaks and demands attentiveness at all meetings. Is very strict with his Division.

Third Seat of First: Akashi Osore-info pending.

Fifth Seat of First: Ren Mimasaka, became a Vizard during a training exercise with new recruits. It is thought she was a fifth-year student at the Academy, a time spent which she won't speak about. One of Aizen's early Hollows came across her and the students, Ren stayed behind to engage it while they ran to safety, it was then that she was overpowered by the sudden appearance of another and woke up changed.

She fled the living world in shame, knowing to return would be to face persecution. Leading some to believe she had fallen in battle.

In Assiah, she lived in one of the many caves dotting the eastern shoreline.

It was during one of the many torturous nights when the inner-Hollow would rise up that they found her.

Zanpaku-to: Kansatsu Tobi-Kunai. Personality: aloof but it's only habit. When in S.S Ren was often alone, considered an outcast and that stayed with her. She has somewhat of an inferiority complex, feeling inside that she doesn't belong, that's why consistently she pushes the group away when they try to include her, this eventually leads to near disastrous consequences one night outside of the sealed Castle of Tsukikage...

Captain of Second: Kagami Nanatsu, Commander of the water element in all its facets. Zanpaku-to: Sazanami. Personality: the easiest of the three to get along with. Former position as bodyguard to Yoruichi Shihoin.

Fifth Seat of Second: Samuel Winston Cain. The Last great American cowboy -or so he thinks. Likes twangy guitars and strumming beneath the light of the moon. A bit of an oddball; he came across-literally a bathing Dani to which she yelled pervert and no one came to her aid. A fact that still rankles her in regard to everyone else. Sam, carries two dueling pistols at his hips inlaid with mother-of-pearl and is truly the only seated officer whose Zanpaku-to isn't a Zanpaku-to at all! The appearance of these besides his dream of eventually going out west to be an famous gunslinger made childhood in the Northern city of Philadelphia very trying on his parents. It is unclear just how he received training in some levels of Way of Binding spells, Five-pillar piercing iron is the highest and discarding incantation once shows his degree of skill-despite his outward appearance of goofiness.

Zanpaku-to weapon: Gunslinger. Personality: A goofball who claims to have a heart of gold and gentlemanly civility towards the Ladies. Speaks in a mish-mash of Southwestern slang and Japanese honorifics to a few of his superiors. Kagami is 'Capt' sir while Kanzaki has -san added to his address.

Former Captain of Third: Hasumi-last name unknown. Status: Deceased. Zanpaku-to: Aohien Ageha

Lieutenant of Third: Takara Shimizu. One of the many orphaned waifs wandering in the Rukongai, Takara was discovered by Gin Ichimaru, on route to traveling to the academy. Gin saved her-a fact that she hasn't forgotten-and took her along with him when he became a student. Time passed and Takara made remarkable progress, Gin graduated before her and was seated but not a Fukutaichou yet by the time she left the academy. His original plan was to make her an officer in his Company, eventually supplanting the Taichou of Third...however something happened to make him reconsider this course and instead place her far from Aizen.

Upon Kagami's flight to Assiah, Gin beseeched his former friend to take her along and do everything in his power-which was a lot- to keep her safe until such a time came when Gin was in a suitable position to protect her himself. It isn't clear what Kagami's response was, however four Shinigami left by the Senkai mon. Meaning Takara was one of them.

Kagami later concedes he believed Gin to be heartless however admits his feelings for Takara are genuine.

Third Seat of Third Division: Toya Amakusa-info pending.

Fourth Seat of Third: Keith Rolston. An American by birth, Keith was discovered as a young child wandering alone in the Human world, it is unknown whether or not his parents were killed. The Shinigami who found him, however, took him back to Soul Society in the hopes that because of his unusual spirit pressure at such a young age might prove to be a great boon to the Court Guard Squads. He was enrolled in the Soul academy and graduated from the six-year course in four. High marks got him a position in Third company under Taichou-. He was well-liked despite once in a while getting a tad bit smart with his superiors. But overall his demotion was a shock to all. It was recommended by then Fukutaichou of Fifth, Sosuke Aizen.

It is assumed later, that he had learned of Aizen's early illegal experiments with the Hollows. Thereby becoming a threat to the devious man.

How he came to be in Assiah, is unknown as well.

Keith refuses to speak about it, a fact that doesn't seem to surprise anyone much. Save for that the man who was closest to him, had something to do with it.

Zanpaku-to: Nikoli. Overall best attribute: His intelligence and common sense (aka he's a bit of a smart **). He will do anything for his friends and the ones he loves. Is kind and very trustworthy, but you don't want to make him angry.

Asked to be made Fourth Seat of Third in some deference to his former seated rank in S.S as well as the assumption carried by some that he may have a crush on his Lieutenant.

Captain of Fourth: Keiko Kurai Yamamoto, only living relative of the Soutaichou of S.S. Wielder of the fire element in all its facets. Wields the Hell sword (Maouen) Zanpaku-to: Getsu-ten. Personality: Unknown. Her cool-headedness and talent for eliminating any pre-conceived hindrances to her plans have placed her at the forefront. Her intelligence is based on manipulation and the fulfillment of a design that was long ago set in motion. It is unclear her true feelings toward Shinigami sub Ichigo Kurosaki, however she has previously claimed that she could love him in her own way while yet in another sense denying that she has any sentiments toward him at all!

Former position as graduating Student in the Shinigami academy was the first to believe in Kagami's innocence when he was charged with murder.

Lieutenant of Fourth: Zoë Elbe, French Canadian background, parents were ex-slaves. Was made second in command of the small survey team dispatched to Assiah to keep watch over the growing Hollow population. Met Kanzaki and turned against S.S along with young current third seat of Second Division, Dani Snow. Zanpaku-to: Shirahime. Personality: calm, peace loving though merciless much like Kei in battle.

Third Seat of Fourth: Aki Shikouten, former Vasto Lordes. During a battle, he fought against Keiko and became an Arrancar due to the backfiring of one of her finishing moves. Afterwards, he was defeated and laid his life in her hands. There is no shame in defeat, he learned and grew to embrace their way of thinking. Zanpaku-to resurrección: Eisen-Iowe (Iron Lion-like.)

Fourth Seat of the Fourth Division: Atrix Crusellas, a modified soul who escaped the initial destruction of his fellow mods. Sometime later when Kagami and co. come across him in Assiah's FireThorn region, he inhabits the body of a Shinigami male. He attacks Kazeatari with the type of ability given to him, instead of with the Zanpaku-to strapped to his back. Kagami remarks on it and makes a deal with him to forge him a true sword as the spirit of the Zanpaku-to refuses to release for an imposter. After this has been accomplished, Atrix decides to join up with Kanzaki's group, then no longer feeling as though he didn't belong. Specially made Zanpaku-to: Tenma Mukurode. It is the only one of the soulless blades forged by Kagami, to have a consciousness linked to that of its wielder. It cannot be used by any other, making it a true Zanpaku-to.

Captain of Fifth: Kazeatari Namaiki and the most difficult of Captains to get along with. Controller of the Wind element in all its facets. Zanpaku-to: Kazekiri. Personality: self-centered except where Kagami is concerned, cares for her Lieutenant Rizu but doesn't show it, is cool and aloof much like her element. Former position as Graduating Student in the Shinigami academy; believes in Kagami and loves him yet despises Soul Society.

Lieutenant of Fifth: Rizu Sakurai, former seated officer under Eighth Company's Shunsui Kyoraku. Was known to be a friend of Kanzaki and helped him escape the Seireitei when his former comrades under the command of Hisrio Shihoin came to arrest him. In aiding him however, Rizu was left with no choice but to flee with him to the world of Assiah along with a few others.

They survived five months, losing only one Shinigami to the Hollows until the day came when they were surrounded in a field by hoards of the creatures. It was then that Kanzaki-foolishly decided to sacrifice himself by buying them some time to escape, this however was rendered null by the appearance of Kagami, Kei, Kazeatari and Takara.

While two of the Elementals made short work of the Hollows, Rizu engaged Kazeatari, recognizing the woman as being marked with absolute power. A fight ensued, eventually Kei did the same with Kanzaki, challenging him to a duel which she subsequently lost-even this is uncertain.

Whether she truly lost or feigned defeat is up for debate.

After that, Kagami was next in line-

Kazeatari following, however her defeat at Rizu's hands placed much doubt in her ability to handle another round if Kanzaki beat Kagami.

This was proved an unreasonable notion as Kazeatari did in fact rise after falling prey to Nekomata's psychological attack.

It is thought that if she had been truly serious during her short match with Kanzaki, she'd have won.

As it was, she dispersed the energy of his Bankai then sent him flying, claiming after a moment a scratch on her cheek as defeat. Kagami thought it might've come from her own attack but said nothing thereby advancing his plan.

( ^_^) Unknown Entities

Touda dancing snake: Black Phoenix whose tears bring instantaneous death to those they fall on.

Suzaku: Guardian of the South. One of the Four Gods, a single tear from this red Phoenix can heal the most grievous injury.

Soryu: Guardian of the East. Dragon God of the sea. Controls all water type and all that fall under that dominion.

Byakko: Guardian of the West.

Genbu: Guardian of the North. Once a mighty protector of man, this spirit was swayed by the concordat to serve the whims of the Earth Elemental and became twisted do to the nature of his want.

13th General of the Black army: Mara, ancient Vasto Lordes. Zanpaku-to release: Nanpa-sen. It is unlike the resurrección state of other Hollows. Her whereabouts are currently unknown though it is assumed by all that for the past 111 years, the keeper of the key to the castle of Tsukikage has resided in Cayo Hueso. However that has never been substantiated as fact.

6th General of the Black Army: Angelo, ancient Vasto Lordes. His appearance and even abilities aren't extensively known, save for Keiko Yamamoto's reference to him during Stand in the Rain. We do know however that one form of his Zanpaku-to release is to control rose thorns with vines capable of slicing through the hardest surfaces known to exist. A fitting power for one whose release is named: Aka Bara.

4th General of the Black army: Kotoko, ancient Vasto Lordes. The Fire elemental poured all her power and ability into his creation. Rather than combining the soul-giving power of Earth and her own fusion of the lifespark; Keiki made Kotoko on her own. His appearance is that of a Kannushi and indeed he and Keiki were very close, a time spent that Keiko reminisces with great joy. Zanpaku-to release: Mozu no Hayanie. Among Kotoko's abilities is the gift to read the minds of those whom he chooses. No one, thus far as proven immune to this most startling ability.

Called 'Lord' or 'Dono' by the Elemental of water once: Ukiyo, a mysterious being whose power is considered to be even with that of the King of Soul Society. His existence isn't acknowledged outside of the confines of Tsukikage and it is clear that he once had something to do with the binding of the elementals to corporeal flesh. It is thought he slumbers in Cayo Hueso. However, that as well, hasn't been confirmed as truth.

Earth Elemental-? The existence of the missing fourth element hasn't been officially acknowledged by Kagami. Nevertheless it is unspoken as of yet, but his powers match or even rival that of the Fire Elemental's.

Ether: The unstable fifth element. A fragment of this metal is contained within every Quincy cross. It is one of the few substances in existence known to cause severe damage to an Elemental; even unto causing death.

The Elements previous and current identities

Fire: Keiki-now Keiko Yamamoto

Water: Mizuna-now Kagami Nanatsu

Wind: Kazahaya: Kazeatari Namaiki

Earth-?

~~~The fourth world: Assiah~~~

Assiah is where in the olden days of Soul society, Reio used to rule from the Phantom city. Later on it was abandoned and only disgraced Shinigami were exiled there. Smaller than earth but more beautiful in its countries, Assiah however was overrun by Hollows whom went unchecked while devouring the humans who lived there.

Realm of the Soul reapers: Kinryou-ku Genei—Phantom Sanctuary also known as the Phantom City and within is the Castle of Tsukikage, base of Division one.

~~~The fabled Third World of Cayo Hueso, home of the God of the Hollows~~~

Unknown

~~~The Second world: Hueco Mundo~~~

Unknown

~~~The first world: Earth ~~~

Smaller world of the Shinigami: Soul society

Note: Juppongatana means ten swords in Japanese; this refers to the five Captains and their Lieutenants.