Orange Peel

Disclaimer: I don't own Bleach.

A/N: For Omelette. Because, ahem. He forgot to make hay while the sun was shining. Plus also I don't know what else to give you for your birthday D:

A gigai is that thing Kisuke stuck Rukia in, dub-watchers. (You suck :D)

The suffix –nii means brother. Please, please tell me you know the rest of the honorifics. Kthnxbai.

x.x.x.x.x.x.x

The night air that Ichigo breathed in was crisp with wintery stiffness, rolled in languorous moonlight. The stars in the sky glittered like opals encrusted in an indigo soufflé, and the seventeen year old threw his arms up and stretched hard.

"Ichi-nii! Karin-chan says she wants orange, not grape!"

"Dammit, Yuzu, tell her to make up her mind!"

The snip of a brunette appeared in the doorway, all slanted body and jaded eyes. "Orange. For sure. The old man says to pick up banana bread on your way home."

"I don't have the money for that," Ichigo began to stride away from his home as Isshin set up a horrible cry.

"My own son! My own son refuses to spare some change for his father's food! What about all the imported Mars Bars I bought for you? Mamma, the curse of puberty has made our Ichigo hate daddy!"

Karin said, "Take your time out there, you lucky duck."

"Like I need to be told?"

It was a blessed, happy family. Kinda. Ichigo took the long way 'round, going by Urahara Kisuke's mediocre store on his way to the new supermarket. He was a senior in high school now, studying hard for the National Exams, trying to get into a college that would take him far away enough from Isshin to make him miss his father's hideously embarrassing ways. Well, he thought he was studying hard; he had nothing on Uryuu. When was the last time he'd seen the bespectacled little shit outside of class or sewing club meetings?

Thinking about the Quincy and his weird ways, Ichigo walked right past the bench before realizing he knew the occupant.

"Soifon-san?"

She looked messy and pissed off, her tempered eyes blurring with emotion.

"I fucking hate Urahara Kisuke!"

Ooh, that was unexpected. Only not 'cause Ichigo knew the two of them got along slightly less well than oil and water. Not that…he'd ever actually…compare one or the other to a liquid to their face. I mean hello. Ichigo liked life. He'd fought a war for it.

"What'd Urahara-san do now?"

She stood (right, like that made a difference) and jabbed her finger into his chest. "Do not. Address that man. With an honorific. When speaking to me!"

He sat (halved himself in height! I swear) and said, "Yeah, alright. Are you gonna cry?"

She snorted, but she might as well have said yes. "Yoruichi-sama chose him over me. I said, let's spend the weekend in Soul Society! And she said, no, let's go to Kisuke's. And the way he behaves. I fucking hateUrahara Kisuke."

Ichigo got the sense that it wasn't so much Kisuke's behavior so much as it was his existence that upset Soifon this much, and cast an arm around her shoulder. "Cheer up, Soifon-san." And then he ran out of things to say. Wow, comforting was more complicated than he figured. "…Do you want to come with me and get some juice? It's this magical box of elixir that you open with a stick—"

"Kuchiki Rukia is a ridiculously unexposed girl," Soifon cut in bitingly, "I know what a juice box is. I don't want any."

"I'm going to get some."

"Am I blocking your way?"

"In a metaphorical sense?"

Two feelings struggled in her; the freezing resentment that she harnessed in a fight and the wry sense of humor that provoked her to choose Omaeda Marechiyo for a lieutenant. Heh, Marechiyo. That man was scared of everything but his captain. She really didn't get it, but that's why it was hilarious.

Soifon got up and went with Ichigo.

There was a vending machine at the end of the street. The intersection they were at lay deserted, traffic lights functioning primly nonetheless. Ichigo got a soda for himself before walking on, walking past to the store.

"I thought the human world never slept," Soifon was looking around interestedly at the silent, hulking buildings around her. "But it's so quiet."

"Karakura's a pretty small place," Ichigo explained, "It's the bigger cities…Tokyo, Kyoto, even Osaka…they never tone down. Besides, we're in the office district. No one stays here at this time, everybody's gone home."

"What are you doing here?"

"Shopping…"

"Urahara Kisuke's a dick…"

"There's the supermarket."

"What's super about it?"

"Banana bread at half-off?"

Their entry caused a slight stir in the skeleton staff, who all then fell back into their preordained positions at the cash counter, the produce aisle, and the back entrance. Ichigo did his thing, and Soifon met him at the counter with empty hands.

"Soifon-san, if you wanna purchase something, I can get it for you."

(He could practically hear Isshin's dying scream of traitor but hey, hot chick beats angry dad any day.)

Surprised but pleased, she scurried back and spent a while perusing the shelves before returning with a large bottle of root beer.

"That's it?"

"That'll do."

He'd thrown the banana bread back onto its display to be able to afford her stuff, and the cashier, having spent the whole evening meticulously arranging that one display shot him a dirty glare before spitting out the total.

Plastic bag in hand, he walked out. Soifon led the way, sipping at her root beer. He watched her back. Being young and incorrigible, his gaze slipped (entirely by accident) to her derriere. Being Ichigo, he forced it upwards. Her hair was wafting the scent of buttery honey something, one of those amazing shampoos girls used to make his life more difficult. It was with considerable horror that he found himself turned on to her.

Stepping slow to match his pace, Soifon held out the bottle of root beer for him to have a taste. He made a gesture of thanks and took it. She smelled that much better for being next to him.

So. There he was, an able bodied high school student, walking with an older (!) woman that oh, was also just sexy, if you liked the thinness of her shoulders and the sharpness of her face. To make a move or to not make a move, that was the question.

(Ichigo had long since gotten over the dead shinigami-live human thing. Ikkaku and Mizuho didn't mind, why should he?)

"Soifon-san, what was your name before the Covert Ops?"

She gave him a look like flying daggers on a January morning; for one heart-stopping second he thought she knew just what he'd been thinking. But hell, she wasn't thatawesome. She wasn't, like, Yoruichi. If it was Yoruichi he'd have been too intimidated to try anything but this was Soifon, and she might not have the cat she-devil's arrogance in her own body, and he'd found her ready to cry and he'd bought her root beer and sure that didn't count as booze but—

"My real name has been consigned to oblivion. I don't see why I should dredge it up for you."

Shot, shot, shot, down by the girl that a fat man wouldn't hump. But then again, what did fat men know about what to hump?

"I'm trying to make conversation."

"There are other topics," she suggested one called, "What do you think is the best way to kill Urahara Kisuke?"

"I really don't think it's healthy to dwell on hatred like that."

"I was thinking about marinating him over a slow fire."

"That would just ruin your appetite forever."

"You'd be surprised," she laughed, and stopped quickly out of—embarrassment? Ichigo was in way over his head, and he hadn't even started hitting on her yet. Quick, what would Mizuro do, him with his older-women fetish that he was so frighteningly adept at sating?

"Are you cold?" he asked like a complete dumbass, because he was in a tee-shirt and jeans while her human form was wrapped in a frumpy blue anorak.

"Are you?" she chivalrously (I think they don't call it that when a woman's doing it) shrugged the anorak off and held it out for him to take. "The new gigai keep us warm; clothes are just a front. Take it, go on."

He totally wouldn't have, except he noticed under the anorak was a white tank top and, there was a God she wasn't wearing a bra.

"Soifon-san," he started talking fast, heat flaming in his face rather than somewhere more functional, "I think you should stay at my house for the night. Do you honestly want to go back to Urahara Kisuke's place?"

"No," she sounded dubious, "But I thought I'd sleep at Inoue's."

"She's studying."

"And you're not?"

"I—no," said Ichigo. Well you think about it. Getting laid beats getting into a good school, just like hot chick beats old man. As soon as the thought entered his head, it took root. Ichigo was seventeen years old. He'd fought a war. He'd fought on her side. They were veterans, bound by trauma. Why couldn't he have sex with her tonight?

(Because that would make him a whore.)

This wasn't the same as sleeping together on the first date at all! He totally knew Soifon!

(What's her real name?)

What's in a name?

(The fate of your goddamn boner, is what. Your right hand is companion enough, leave the woman in peace.)

"Soifon-san?" he said her name not really knowing what he was gonna say after that, but when she tilted her head inquiringly upwards he just fell onto her mouth, leading with lips.

The plastic bag hanging on his left wrist rustled as he put his hand on her back to keep her in place, his other hand against her cheek. Soifon gripped his shirt and sort of just stared at him.

Kurosaki Ichigo stared back, went red, and pulled away.

"Sorry—"

"How old are you?"

He helplessly mouthed words at her, sure that she was about tear his testicles off, and was reminding him of his own inferiority and lack of right to resist. Soifon had other ideas.

"Never mind, I don't want to know. Let's go to your place. You're old enough to have a lock on your door and that's good enough for me."

He ran like hell, leaped over the little gate, slammed himself against the door till Karin opened it, and careened up the stairs and into his room. Locking it behind him, he bent over and grabbed his knees, gasping for breath.

"Warming up?"

Soifon was sitting on his bed, tiny feet skimming the floor. Memories of Rukia jarred his mind and he forced himself to focus. One diminutive brunette mustn't be confused with another.

"We need to be quiet. This room isn't soundproof."

"I'm an assassin," she was pretty nonchalant about it, "I think I can do quiet. Can you?"

Interesting question. Ichigo shoved it aside to sit on his bed and kiss her, his hand trailing lazily down her spine. Her tricky finger slipped under his shirt and ran along his softened abdomen; after all there hadn't been a world to save this year, and Ichigo hadn't exercised anything but his brain. Still, his stomach was lean and tough; Soifon's hands ran still higher. He froze stiff as the pads of her thumbs played over his nipples.

"Soifon-san…"

She sucked lightly on his lower lip, nibbled on his chin. His arm stopped to tighten around her delicate hip. He tilted his head backwards and she plunged her hands to the vicinity of his waistband, slipping one finger under and sending cackling bolts of electricity to his hardening cock.

"Hey, Kurosaki. Why don't you just stay like that all night."

It was the 'you' in 'all night' that galvanized him into action. Snapping his eyes open, he grabbed her waist and pulled her in for another kiss, ravenous and horny. Her thigh was pressed between his legs and she sighed, nails scrabbling for grip in his orange hair. Her shampoo nearly destroyed him as he caught it close and personal—a miasma of everything he needed right now. Right. Now.

Never having had caution to throw to the winds, Ichigo slid his hands into her pants. Soifon laughed (…he should be mortified, but he had other issues to deal with) and stopped when he felt the soft cotton of her work day underwear.

"What's the hold up?" she demanded, and her hands held his wrist while he tugged aside the panties. The cloven place took him in willingly, and Soifon closed her eyes. Ichigo frowned and pulled out, wiping his fingers on his jeans and casting an impatient eye around his ill-equipped room.

"We need lube…"

She brought his hands back to her hips. "Fully. Functional. Gigai. Works just like a human body. We don't need lube."

"Condoms?"

"I'm clean! This is a gigai. You're a virgin." (Hey! He was kinda hurt the way she said it.) "Who is going infect whom?"

"But a fully functional gigai—"

"I'll be out of it on Monday, whereby it'll be discarded. If you put this off any longer, Kurosaki—"

And his hands crept, of their own accord, to cup her breasts. He brought his lips to hers, kissing much slower, more patient now that he knew this was going to happen. She cajoled him into lying down as they kissed, one knee tucked on either side of him, leaning down to hold his shoulders as his tongue tried to bully hers. Right, like that was happening anytime soon. Soifon gave as good as she got, pushing his tongue around.

They grinned into the kiss.

Ichigo squeezed the warm arc of her ass, and she shuddered against him, against his arousal. He groaned, and Soifon said:

"I thought we needed to be quiet."

By way of reply, he sat upright and tugged his shirt off. Sunny shoulders had Soifon's eyebrows raised; and as her gaze fell she decided he wasn't at all young enough for her to feel guilty about. Following his example, she lost the tank top. As if confronted by unimaginable riches, Ichigo closed his eyes. She crawled into his lap for another kiss that slid down onto his collarbone, along his sternum, down into his navel where she bit.

"…Aah!"

He bit his lip. She bit back a smirk. He figured, enough is enough, strap on a pair, and undid his pants to reveal grey boxers. She pressed herself to him, hard, and he pressed back. Their bare skin seethed to be closer, and Soifon denied him his need. She slipped a hand around his cock and stroked.

"Don't touch there! Fuck, lady, you're crazy!" he blurted out in a low hiss before thinking it through, and she quirked an eyebrow at him.

"Where else do you want me to touch?"

"I…I don't mean…I meant not yet…"

"Kurosaki." Her voice, fuck, that was sexy. "Where do you want me to touch?"

"…There is fine."

So much for strapping on a pair, he was putty in her hands. She kissed him, both hands between their bodies. He braced himself on the heel of each palm placed firmly on the sheets behind him, whining for her to move faster through lips bitten bloody from holding back a series of cries and moans.

Then Soifon, a woman he thought too proud to ever sleep with him, brought her sweet, thin lips to his cloth covered erection and took him in, boxers and all.

He yelped, "Shit!" and closed his eyes hard as she started blowing on the tip, the grey silk rubbing against his cock and—feeling—like—mmm, heaven…

"Unnn…"

Miraculously, unbelievably, he disengaged her, wrenching away in what was easily the stupidest motion of his short life. She looked towards him, a question mark scribbled across her face. Ichigo swung off the bed, hopped bandy-legged to the stereo system, and turned the volume up on the radio. A song blared to life, and he just about made it back to the bed before pushing Soifon down and kissing her, deep and achy.

"Fuck being quiet."

"Okay," she agreed, "Fuck."

Her knees folded and her legs trapped him, ankles crooked over his back. He hadn't even noticed her legs were long enough to do that. Struggling with her pants did nothing to ease his want of her; he stayed hard until the last inch of denim was off her toes and then on impulse he kissed her feet, planted one straight on the soles. Soifon giggled. She stopped really, really quickly but he heard it. And whatever happened next, however he embarrassed himself, it would be worth it for that one moment.

Hesitating for a heartbeat, he slipped a finger into her, remembering porn and preparation. She slapped his hands away and her demanding hips demanded his; he gave in to her. One hand steadying her waist, he used the other to position his cock between her legs. For a second he wondered if she turned down his fingers because she thought his length was too small to bother with it; before he could feel offended she thrust herself up and he thrust in—and the sheer pleasurably flustered surprise in her eyes was an ego trip to Disneyland.

They rocked together like that for a while, music and blood roaring in their ears. Ichigo's world blurred, focused, and then corkscrewed into a dive so that the only plane he existed on was the one he occupied with her. Soifon tightened her grip around him and that was his signal to move—her turn to let out moans that twined around his neck like gentle breath play, a pool of molten liquid building in his nether regions. He bared his teeth and growled, determined to show her up for the sex god he surely was. He—would—not—cum—before her…!

"Ah," he said, "Aaahh~" and the sex god curled his toes and threw back his head.

Soifon's nails dug into his shoulder and she hissed, "Who said you could—?"

Panicked and ashamed, he drew out quickly. She crossed her legs and twitched her foot in annoyance, watching him go red.

"Sorry."

"Idiot."

"Hey now, for the first time, I thought I was—"

"A complete idiot."

"Huh." He'd been going for 'not bad at all', but she really was the judge of that. Her hot glare eventually eased into a frank appraisal of his features, and he met her gaze with some hope.

"Wanna try again?"

She laughed. He could really get used to that sound. She held out her arms, and he took them gratefully. They'd probably do it all night and end up sleeping in too late, so that when Isshin forced his way in (if locked doors could stop the man Ichigo wouldn't be looking for a college in Korea) for morning greetings he'd see Soifon in his son's arms or vice versa and make terribly unwitty puns about how Ichigo had gotten banana bread mixed up with something else altogether but hey, you know what?

He didn't give a shit, because he was getting laid.

x.x.x.x.x.x.x

:D It took a long time because I was hard pressed for a situation in which they'd wind up together.