A/N: Thank you so much for giving me and my story a try. It's a great honor to have even one reader. This fanfic was highly inspired by Aftonen's "Amazing Ichigo's Blast to The Past." It, too, had Ichigo going back in time but I decided to give it a try of my own. This is set immediately after the first movie, Memories of Nobody. I don't believe I have any spoilers and I will try my hardest to keep it that way. Anyway, on with the show!
Rated T for language.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own most of these characters; they strictly belong to Kubo Tite-kun. Kishu Sorata is my O.C. but I borrowed his name from another anime. I'd like to see if it rings anyone's bells. I am not selling this product so I will not at any time make any profit for this story. The only time anyone will be paying is for the ink if that person decides to print this piece of work. I will also declare that I borrowed some favorable lines from other televised programs and literature.
A lovely silk ribbon ran between Ichigo's fingers as he pondered why it rang such a small bell in the back of his mind. He watched across the bridge as a teenage girl with purple hair ran off to the far distance, her friends in the same school uniform following afterwards and laughing the whole way. He didn't know why it seemed so familiar or understand the peace it brought him to see it. He let the smile cross his lips as a familiar image of a shinigami armed with a spear crossed his memory. A shinigami with amber eyes and a red ribbon in her hair…
He turned his back to the retreating school girls and went to walk his way when something caught his eye below the bridge and in the water. Ichigo ran to the edge, both hands on the railing, as a bright light shone from the depths below. "What the-?" he said, eyes growing wide. He took a look around but he seemed to be the only one who noticed. Then, a giant gust of wind began to swirl around the now formed orb of light that rose from the water and began to levitate right in front of him.
Everyone crouched down to protect themselves from the strong wind and Ichigo crossed his arms in front of him for his own protection, the ribbon slipping out of his grasp. He turned to watch it go, not sure why he wanted to catch it but as he turned the orb progressed and wrapped itself around him.
"Wha-?" Ichigo grabbed his substitute badge at his waist but was too late to do anything else. His whole world was engulfed in white before slowly fading to pitch black.
***Swirly Swirly Swirl***
"Hey, we've got a breather!"
The words rang in Ichigo's pounding head. He gave a low groan as he went to reach for his temple but a hand pushed his back down.
"Take it easy. Don't move until we know the total evaluation of your injuries."
"Injuries…?" Then, Ichigo recalled a ribbon floating in the wind. What was so important about that ribbon…? The bright orb flashed in his memory and him being sucked into it. Brown eyes shot open and Ichigo sat straight up. "What happened?"
The person sitting in front of him shot backwards in sudden shock. "I-it was a Hollow," the boy stuttered.
"A Hollow?" Ichigo recalled being on a bridge but then he realized he was nowhere close to a bridge. He didn't even think he was in Karakura anymore. He was lying in a field of green-an open prairie with a surrounding of trees. Ichigo was breathless when he looked around and saw countless shinigami scattered everywhere and coated in blood. "A Hollow…did this…?" Only a few shinigami were standing and most of them were crouched over their wounded (if not dead) teammates.
"Wait a minute! How'd I get here?" It was obvious he was in the Soul Society but he was just in the World of the Living. What was that orb and how'd it get him here? He looked down at his clothes and noticed he was wearing his shihakushou and had Zangetsu strapped to his back.
"Hey, are you okay?" The shocked shinigami regained his wits and was placing the back of his hand up to Ichigo's brow. "Have you gone through amnesia?" He turned his attention to someone else. "I need Squad 4; we have a mental trauma!"
"What was that?" Ichigo grabbed the guy by the collar, a vain popping in his temple.
A calm, deep voice interupted saying, "Behave yourself. You've been through a very traumatizing situation. There's no need to attack our allies." Ichigo looked up to see a man flash-step behind the threatened shinigami. The man had short white hair and deep hazel eyes that gave both a calm yet determined resolve. "Please behave; we have many to attend to."
There was something about this man that was so familiar...and reminded Ichigo of…
Both men looked at Ichigo with shock on their faces. "Captain…?" The white-haired man was the first to speak and looked at Ichigo curiously.
There was a silence.
The white-haired man gave a chuckle before growing stern. "You must have been hit pretty hard. Kishu Sorata," he turned to the threatened shinigami, "please take this man to the Squad 4 barracks."
The man nodded, his long bangs getting in his eyes. "Understood, Ukitake-fukutaichou."
Ukitake nodded before flash-stepping to another shinigami.
"Wait, Ukitake!" Ichigo jumped to his feet and began to charge after said shinigami until Kishu Sorata came diving after him, grabbing Ichigo by the ankles and both of them went face first into the dirt.
"Hold on! I need to follow orders," the boy cried.
"Oh, shove your orders where the sun don't shine! I need to speak with Ukitake." Ichigo kicked at the man before going to his feet. "Ukitake!"
Ukitake was turned to a shinigami but stopped when he heard his name called and looked over to Ichigo as he approached, Sorata following suit.
"What's going on, Ukitake? How'd you get demoted? Why'd you cut your hair? When'd—"
Ichigo's rushed questions were halted when Ukitake raised a hand, the shadow of a scowl on his face. "I don't have time for this, young man," he said. "Please be compliant and go to the Squad 4 infirmary."
"I'm sorry, Ukitake-fukutaichou," Sorata said as he bowed in respect. He grabbed Ichigo by the elbow and began to walk him off to the Seireitei but Ichigo shoved him away.
"Captain Ukitake!" Ichigo stomped towards the man who had once again turned his back and started to walk away until Ichigo called for him again. "Damn it, Ukitake. It's me, Kurosaki Ichigo," he exclaimed as he slammed his hand to his own chest.
Ukitake furrowed his brows, "I don't have a Kurosaki Ichigo on my squad."
"What are you saying, Ukitake?" Ichigo was about to explode until he heard someone flash-step behind him.
"Now, now, what have we here?" another man asked as he approached. He crossed his arms lazily as he stood next to Ukitake. "I don't recall having a Kurosaki Ichigo in my squad either."
Ichigo looked at both men totally dumbfounded. He was positive that man was Captain Ukitake and this other man had such a familiar face…A face with a tiny scruff on the chin and lengthy brunette bangs with shaggy hair; a face with a carefree smile and calm eyes; a face that reminded Ichigo of…
"Captain?" His deep voice bellowed in a small laugh. "I'm flattered but I believe you're mistaken. Neither of us are captains." He scratched at the stubble on his chin. "Where are you from, stranger?"
Ichigo scratched at his head irritably. You've got to be kidding me! "Are you two serious? I'm the substitute shinigami, Kurosaki Ichigo of Karakura Town!"
"Now, hold on," Kyouraku said as he stepped forward. "You're a substitute shinigami? If you're assigned to the World of the Living then what are you doing here? In the middle of this battlefield?"
Ichigo gaped at them. "Look, I don't know what happened. I was on this bridge in the World of the Living, in my body, but there was this thing that sucked me in and dropped me off here. I don't know how I got here or what happened to my body."
The two shinigami looked at each other before looking back to Ichigo. "What was this thing?" Ukitake took a step forward and grabbed the substitute badge poking out of the opening of Ichigo's shihakushou.
Ichigo would have stopped him but thought better of it. "I don't know. It rose from the river and just…swallowed me and I woke up here."
"Hm…" Kyouraku took a step closer to Ichigo to get a better look and looked down at the badge in Ukitake's hand. "That's real, alright." He then looked back up to Ichigo. "What year is it?"
Ichigo paused for a moment. "2004, why?"
"Just as I thought."
"What do you mean? What is it?" Ichigo began to grow uneasy as the two 'lieutenants' began to look at him pensively.
"Kurosaki," Ukitake started as he returned the substitute badge, "You're far beyond our time."
"What are you getting at?"
"It seems," Kyouraku started, "you've taken a warp through time."
"I think it best you keep your presence here on the hush." Kyouraku sat cross-legged behind a table, drinking a small cup of sake. "If Yama-jii finds out about your presence then you may never get home. Squad 12 may want to keep you here to gain knowledge of the future."
Around the table sat Kyouraku, Ichigo, Ukitake and Sorata. While Kyouraku was drinking away, Ukitake donated cups of his famous green tea.
"Agreed," Ukitake said as he took a drink of his tea. "We don't know how large an uproar it would cause to have access to such advanced knowledge."
"Agreed," Sorata said, looking around cautiously. He didn't know what exactly was going on but if Ukitake agreed, then he agreed.
"Yeah, but how am I supposed to get home?" Ichigo sat with his hands pressed in his knees, staring at the tea in front of him. "Maybe if we ask Byakuya, he'll be able to help."
"Kuchiki Byakuya? What would Captain Kuchiki's grandson have to do with any of this?" Ukitake's black brow perked up.
"Hold it, Kurosaki." Kyouraku placed his sake cup down and looked over to Ichigo. "You must understand that your time is very far along the line from ours and that whatever you may tell us now can damage our future. Even the slightest hint of what may come can change time and space."
Ichigo looked up from his tea. The corner of his mouth stretched to show a small frown. He opened his mouth to say something but Kyouraku continued.
"No matter how important some information may be that could possibly change our future for the better, you must be sure to not share. There's a reason we're not supposed to know. You were never meant to be here, Kurosaki, so don't do anything that may alter the future in the slightest. When you find your way back home we must continue like you've never been here."
Ukitake had excused them all shortly afterwards and gave Ichigo a room from a fallen comrade. Ichigo sat upright on the futon, sleep far from him right now. He was stuck here, how long he didn't know, and he couldn't even take advantage of the situation. Kyouraku's words were ringing in his head along with all the images of what could be avoided by telling them now. Ichigo growled under his breath and gripped at the stretched cloth on his knees.
"That's it," Ichigo said as he uncrossed his legs and stood up. "I've got to tell them. They need to know about Rukia's sentence and the betrayal of those captains no matter what Kyouraku says." He slipped out his room and headed towards Ukitake's. The lieutenant had told him where he would be if needed and Ichigo began to stomp that way. Gratefully, there was still a light on and Ichigo could hear a light coughing beyond the paper. He was tempted to storm in but stopped himself and slowly slid the door open. "Cap—Ukitake."
Hazel eyes looked upward from a stack of papers to lock eyes with Ichigo. "Kurosaki," he cleared his throat only to get another small wave of coughs. "It's late."
"I know." Ichigo stepped inside and slid the door closed behind him. "Ukitake, I don't care what Kyouraku said. There's something I have to tell you." He was about to continue until the older man gave a heavy sigh.
"Kurosaki, I will heed Kyouraku's decision." Ukitake put down his brush and invited Ichigo to sit across from him. "His conclusion may seem ridiculous but it is smart to be cautious."
"Knowledge is power," Ukitake continued. "And with great power comes great responsibility. Please, Kurosaki, don't damage your present and our future. It's bad enough that you already claimed us as captains." As he finished his sentence he took a drink of his already held tea. "Eventually, you'll have to tell us all you can about your situation so we can return you to your own time but until then don't speak a word that may cause disruption later."
Ichigo's brows furrowed. So many words were running across his tongue but he swallowed them back down. Finally, he sighed in defeat.
"I can only imagine the burden we've put upon you and I hate to see the weight on your shoulders but we must be cautious." Ukitake lowered his tea and held it in his lap. Then, he looked up to meet Ichigo's troubled eyes and gave a smile. "Thank you."
Ichigo hesitated and raised a brow. "For what?"
"Well, if you hadn't come in I'm sure I would have fallen asleep doing my work," he gave a small chuckle but seemed to stop short and take a breath. He smiled again and closed his eyes cheerfully. "I can just hear Kyouraku never letting it go." Ukitake stood up from his desk and moved to his side table before returning to hand Ichigo a cup of steaming tea. "I'm sure your mind is full, so here, it will help you rest."
Ichigo held it in his hands and looked at it carefully, the smell slowly reaching his nostrils. "What is this?" he said with a sour look. "It smells awful."
"Trust me; it will clear your mind instantly. It was made by Squad 4 so not only is it effective but not very pleasing to the tongue either." Ichigo was reluctant. "It's late, Kurosaki, and we both need our sleep. As much as I like your company I've a lot of work to get done and would like to get some decent rest and I'm sure you wouldn't like being up all night by your lonesome."
Groaning, Ichigo took a long chug, nearly spitting it out when he stuck out his tongue in protest. "Ugh." Again he hesitated but finished the cup. He slammed the cup down on the desk as his body began to tremble from the horrible taste. "Yeah, thanks. I'll leave you alone." He got up to leave but stopped after sliding open the door when Ukitake said his name.
"Kurosaki," Ichigo turned, "I promise I'll get you home." Ichigo stared at the lieutenant's determined eyes before giving a wan grin and leaving, sliding the door closed as he left.
"He doesn't change much," Ichigo said to himself as he entered his room and sat on the futon. He thought about how Ukitake had risked near everything when he saved Rukia at the last minute because the mere substitute wasn't fast enough. Then he thought about how he met back up with Ukitake back in Karakura when Rukia went to him for assistance to get the Shinenju. "Wait a minute…" Ichigo rested his chin in his hand. "We were arguing at that shrine. Why didn't I just give him the Shinenju?" Something began to click. There was something about the situation he just couldn't remember. "What was the Shinenju…" Before he could get anywhere else, the medicine kicked in and he was out like a light, crashing backwards into his pillow.
To be continued…
A/N: That's the first chapter. I will not lie; I have no idea where I'm going with this. I thought I did until I started typing it up. I know how I'm getting Ichigo back home and I have a huge climax planned but everywhere else is pretty blank. It would be greatly appreciated if some would donate recommendations. They'll all be accepted with open arms and contemplated over. I, too, will try my hardest to think of something interesting to get this story going. Until then, help would be splendid. Well, I hope you enjoyed the first chapter and you're all interested enough to continue reading as I continue writing. Thank you so much for reading! Any questions, comments or concerns are welcomed. Even criticism's harsh cousins, flames, are invited over with cookies ready for dunkin'.