Why hello there :) It's so nice to be with again, and after such a long time too.

I'll be doing the AN later on after the story, so go ahead and read first.

Disclaimer: Last time I checked, I am not Japanese, I am not male, and my name ain't Tite Kubo. So no, I don't own Bleach.


You know how they say that a person's eyes are the windows to their soul?

Yes...well, the problem is with you I never know whether I'm looking at your real eyes or your fake ones. Actually, now that I think about it, I wonder if the you I've known is the real one.

You see, whenever we make love you would often give me that glazed look, coupled with that smile. That smile that never reached your eyes. But somehow you often managed to make me lose myself within those eyes, and I would forget any doubts that I have.

That's probably why I did not notice… probably why this loneliness is eating me from the inside.

And before I knew it, things between you and me will never be the same.

[flashback]

"Rukia"

Rukia turned around at the sound of that familiar voice,

She smiled at the person standing in front of her, "Byakuya" she acknowledged.

"I was wondering if you... do you have time?" his voice lacked the confidence that a male voice should usually posses.

Rukia noticed he was holding a wad of cash in his left hand, "so... I heard you took a part time job? Were you saving up to buy my time?" her voice was low and warm.

"Well, I'm not sure if this is enough... although just a fraction of your time would do." He said, handing her the money.

She accepted the small amount of cash, though she would have gladly given her time to him without any payment. She smiled at him again, "so where do you want to go?"

"My apartment." he stated bluntly.

0o0

He opened the door slowly, half expecting that the woman in his bed would be gone by now, but the figure of a naked body that stirred lightly at the sound of his footsteps told him otherwise.

"Hello." He greeted softly, touching the woman's cheek.

"Hello." The woman greeted back, her voice thick with sleep, "Its cold... where did you go?" she got hold of his hand and kissed his finger tips lightly.

"Out... I bought food." he raised his hand holding a plastic bag from a nearby convenience store.

"So you do eat," she teased him. She brought up her small hands and touched his cheek.

"You're so skinny... and pale. You should eat more often."

She got up and wrapped herself in his blanket, "I'll take a shower, why don't you prepare the food?" she kissed his lips tenderly, and wove her fingers into his long black hair. "Your hair is so soft" she whispered into his lips.

That smile again, the one that never reaches her eyes. They remained listless, hauntingly beautiful… hauntingly dead.

0o0

Rukia tilted her head up to look at a painting.

It was dark. Lonely. Dead… but very much alive. Colors were hidden beneath a black mask, threatening to spill out. Screaming to be let out.

A bitter smile graced her pink painted lips. She thought the painting reflected Byakuya, and felt a pang of jealousy hit her.

He had these things to turn to… she had none.

A hand snaked around her waist, "Found you."

She closed her eyes and soaked in the sound of his voice. The confidence it lacked before is now tucked in carefully in some place. She allowed his warmth to drown her, and remembered the way they shared their body heat just moments ago.

She turned around to capture his lips in her own. She knew people were looking, heck she could hear gasps all around, but she didn't care… and she hoped he didn't either.

"Wipe that surprised look off your handsome face." It took her all to keep her heart from falling apart.

Then he smiled, that warm-hearted smile she adored… and hated at the same time. His smile that held a promise of love if she dared look carefully.

He leaned in for another kiss. Her heart broke entirely… for him, rather than for herself.

"This university art fair is the best I've been to so far." His voice was barely above a whisper, as if it was meant to be a secret, just between the two of them.

"You art majors really are a sentimental bunch." She had her back to Byakuya. Her tone was playful, but her face was lifeless.

o0o

"Rukia."

She dreaded the sound of that voice. She held Byakuya's hand tighter.

"So this is why I haven't seen you around our department lately," a hand roughly grabbed her by the shoulder and spun her around.

She let go of Byakuya's hand. Afraid her pain would travel through their connected limbs, afraid he'd figure out what she was hiding.

"I've no business with you, Ichigo." Her voice would've frozen hell over. Her eyes could've rekindled the frozen flames.

"You've been hanging around the art majors too often," Ichigo glanced at Byakuya and smirked, "Haven't been feeling too posh lately Rukia?"

She took one look at the buxom red-head standing behind Ichigo and felt her contempt for the man spike up.

"Byakuya… let's go." Her voice was quiet, but her eyes pleaded with him. She was silently asking for salvation. The pain she carefully kept from him, bled out from the depths of her eyes.

"You always liked the famous ones neh?" He was baiting her. Rukia knew Ichigo's games too well.

She looked at Byakuya out of the corner of her eyes, his face was impassive… almost as lifeless as hers. She would've laughed at this at another time. She could almost believe that they were a couple… almost.

Everyone was looking at them now, all eyes intent on their little drama. She can endure all of it, she was used to the stares and the glares and even the whispers.

She wasn't sure he could… and she suddenly felt afraid.

"Enough Ichigo,"

"Why? Kuchiki looks confused, see?"

She knew he was right, Ichigo had talent when it comes to reading other people's emotions. Byakuya's jaw was set harder. He refused to meet Rukia's eyes, her hauntingly beautiful… but dead eyes.

"You liked those who were in the spotlight best, right Rukia?" Ichigo held her chin between his index finger and his thumb. Her cold, frozen amethyst orbs were forced to meet his smouldering amber ones.

His touch made her feel sick… yet loved. She hated every moment the two of them made contact. But she loved the feel of his skin on hers.

Her eyes strayed over the ginger-haired woman behind Ichigo who was watching them intently. Rukia wanted to gouge those sharp grey eyes out.

She knew she made a mistake, allowing herself to be caught up in the moment, when Byakuya's pale hand grabbed Ichigo's tanned one.

She felt sick once more, as they lost contact when Ichigo's hand was forcibly removed by Byakuya.

The sound of a fist connecting with flesh made her want to vomit. She saw red trail down Ichigo's nose.

She recognized the all too familiar rage in his eyes, and she feared for God-knows-how many times now for Byakuya.

She wanted to cry when she saw Ichigo's fist connect with Byakuya's perfectly chiselled face.

Byakuya got up, fist clenched and poised to throw a punch back. Rukia was struck with horror, she knew neither would stop until one has been murdered, or close to it.

She threw herself in front of him and buried her face in his chest.

"No more. Please, please, please, please…"

Her eyes were shut tight as a litany pleas poured out of her mouth. Her voice barely a notch above a whisper. Once again, the two of them shared a secret… always the two of them.

Byakuya tenderly wrapped an arm around her. She looked up and searched his face, it broke her heart to see his eyes filled with venom for the other man.

His lips were bleeding. A bruise was starting to form under his skin. Rukia gingerly placed her fingers over his bruises, hoping to high heavens that her touch would sooth the ache.

She placed a soft kiss on his lips, whispered once again for him to stop. She turned him around and led him away.

"Enough playing around Rukia," Ichigo's voice was firm. The kind he used when he's gone impatient.

She looked back, saw the ginger-haired beauty beside Ichigo. She wanted to cut off those arms wrapped possessively around him.

"I want you back by tomorrow. Enough fucking around."

She gripped Byakuya's arm tighter. They walked away without looking back.

o0o

Rukia pressed an ice pack gently over his bruised skin. She hated that patch of blue and black on his otherwise flawless skin.

She hated it even more because she was the cause of it.

Byakuya took her face in both his hands. She smiled, both his palms were warm… just the way she liked them. Maybe… just the way she loved them.

She turned her face and kissed his palm gently, "never soil these perfect hands again…"

Her eyes were closed; she failed to see the hurt that flashed in his grey slanted eyes.

"Never soil these hands again… especially for my sake."

She opened her eyes. Those beautiful haunting eyes. Two pools of purple flame, beseeching his handsome face for God-knows-what.

Byakuya knew she was in pain. Her eyes jumped to life whenever she was in pain.

"Rukia…"

"Never for me Byakuya." She was pleading again. Why though, Byakuya never found out.

She stood up and beckoned him to follow. She led him to the bedroom, to his bed and they made love.

She was careful not to hurt his face, he was careful not to hurt her heart. He trailed kisses down her neck to her chest, then back up again. He placed butterfly kisses along her jaw line, to her earlobe.

They made love while their hands intertwined together.

He hovered above her and looked at her eyes. She smiled. It broke his heart… it was that smile. The one that never reached her eyes. Those haunting, beautiful… dead eyes.

He bent down, his lips close to her ear.

"I think… I love you." He whispered while his eyes were shut close. He fucking hated himself right now.

He looked at her, her eyes specifically and he knew he won. They were, once again, two pools of liquid fire. Alive.

He cursed himself later on for hurting her deliberately. He cursed himself because of his selfishness. He hated himself because he wanted to be happy that time, he wanted to be happy with her. He called himself stupid countless of times for wanting to fall in love with her.

He drove her into a corner.

It should've been him… instead of her.

o0o

He grew afraid of the morning after. He was scared to open his eyes and find an empty space beside him. Afraid to find the dent on the mattress next to him still warm, still carrying her scent.

He had to open his eyes however. He did just that and had to choke back his tears when he found the space next to him empty. It wasn't warm however. She had left hours ago.

His long, black hair hung over half his face covering his grey, sorrow drowned eyes. He directed his gaze outside the window and caught glimpse of snow falling outside.

"You're awake," Rukia greeted him with a smile.

He released his breath he did not know he was holding. He almost forgot that Rukia loved his rooftop. She said something about wanting to fly off from this place. To break free of the cage she had stupidly built for herself.

She was treading snow with her bare feet. A thin scarf was carelessly draped on her slender shoulders.

He could see her soles were red. Raw from the cold.

"I'll get your shoes…"

"I'm pregnant…"

He stopped on his tracks. He turned around, confusion written all over his handsome face.

"Is it –"

"I haven't slept with anyone for the past few months except you." Her voice never wavered. She looked at him steadily with those beautiful haunting… dead eyes.

He sat down on an empty metal chair. It was cold… but he couldn't care less. He stretched out his hand, silently asking her to come to him.

He was grateful she took it. He kissed her forehead when she came close enough.

"Byakuya… I wish I met you before I met him." She cupped his face with both her hands. He closed his eyes, drowning himself in her frozen grasp.

"I wish I knew of your kindness, before I came to love that man." She placed butterfly kisses on his eyelids.

"Rukia…"

"My feet are getting cold… how about getting me those shoes?" Smiling, she turned her back and walked away from him. She stood against the concrete railing and peered down. "I think, Byakuya, I have this desire to fall in love with you."

He watched her for several moments before walking inside and searching for her shoes.

His thoughts were in disarray. But somewhere, in the recess of his dark, depressed mind the thought of Rukia and her recently spoken words provided light for his lost thoughts.

A blood-curdling scream broke through his thoughts and he sped outside to his rooftop to find the petite woman missing.

He approached the spot where he had last seen her, and had to choke back the sound of disbelief that fought its way out of his lips.

A simple phrase, "Thank you", was traced into the snow that piled up on the concrete ledge. He imagined her small dainty fingers tracing the outlines of her gratitude.

He steeled himself and peered down below.

He saw her face down, with the most vibrant of red seeping out of her exquisite raven coloured head, into the whitest blanket of snow.


Well, that's it... :) And before I proceed to my rant I just wanted to greet you guys a very MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY 2011!

First off, sorry If there are a lot of errors. I don't have a beta and English isn't my primary language. I do the best I can when I check grammar and spelling :)

Alright, moving on.

Yes, this one-shot isn't really something that I planned on. You see, I was cleaning out my laptop's folders when I came across this document filed under scraps. I suddenly remembered that I wanted to post this one a looooooong long time ago but then I started to hate the gloomy setting I had created so I ended up scrapping it.

Then I came across it again today and I thought, hey! why not post it now? Since I really can't find my muse and continue my other two stories, I figured maybe some of the feed backs (If I will be able to get some? ^.^) might kick me out of the bogs I am in and inspire me to continue with AAIW and JBF. I'd like for the new chapters to be gifts for you guys :D I hope I'll be able to post updates for the two stories within this week... before University starts again and interfere with my life *crosses fingers*

So yes... please. Tell me what you think? I'll really appreciate some of your feed backs. And tell me if I should change the rating to M... cause I'm not really sure if this is allowed under T.

Well, that's about it. I'll be waiting for your comments. Thank you

-Chi.