Rabbit and Carrot

Chapter 18

I stared at the drink in my hands, trying to search for something to say.

My brother sat opposite me and Ichigo was beside me, unusually still. I sneaked a peek at his face and… his face was practically glowing. Sensing my gaze he turned to me and his eyes all but shouted…

Holy sh*t its Kuchiki Byakuya! I'm sitting at the same table as the internationally famous lawyer who is actually the leader of Kings! Holy sh*t, I'm sitting with K I'm sitting with K I'm sitting with K I'm-

I turned back to my brother whilst wanting to kick Ichigo's shin.

"I didn't know we had him in Kings," my brother commented. "What's your name?"

My brother already knew who he was from Kaien, I was sure of it, so why was he doing this? And brother sounded calm. That wasn't good. It wasn't good at all. I wanted to scream at Ichigo to run away before it was too late. Or maybe it was already too late…

"His name is Kurosaki Ichigo. It's his first time here," I answered as Ichigo was still too dazed to speak.

He continued to look at Ichigo, with his arms crossed, thinking deeply. That was when I realised he was actually calm and not that angry.

I remembered how Kaien and my late sister mentioned something about candidates and a bad feeling erupted inside me.

"Nii-" I stopped midsentence and wanted to hit myself. I really had been away for too long. So long that I had forgotten I wasn't supposed to call him that at the club. I quickly backtracked, "K, I'm coming back – for good."

That got his attention. A hint of a smile ghosted past his face but he just nodded.

Behind him, Renji was ecstatic. He had been in Kings for almost as long as me. I briefly thought back to the times we went on errands together. And how I used to always had to save him. And all those times when I beat him when we were practicing our combat skills with…

Finally remembering why I was here, I looked around before looking at my brother again. "K, where is -?"

"K." I looked at the newcomer and froze. Walking up to us was a silver-haired male who owned the most cunning smile I have ever seen.

"Ichimaru Gin," I called, half rising out of my seat.

"Eh, am I seeing this right?" He said in an astonished voice. "The legendary Kime is here?"

I opened my mouth but my brother cut me off, "Gin, why have you come here today?"

Hearing that, his grin disappeared and a serious expression replaced it. They seemed to hold a conversation with their eyes and my brother stood up.

"I'll let this slide today, I'll speak to the two of you another time," he said.

I watched the two of them walk away before remembering something, "K, Wait!"

Brother paused and his hand snapped up to catch the object I had thrown at him. He glanced at his hand, where the golden bullet shell I had found now lay. Recognition flashed across his face. Gin gasped and, beside me, Ichigo looked on in confusion.

"I found it in Nee-sama's hospital room," I explained simply.

With a quickly darkening expression, he turned to look at me fully but before he said anything I continued, "Let me take care of it."

He looked at me for a long time before throwing it back and saying firmly, "I want him dead."

"Wait, you want what?" I heard Ichigo exclaim but I just nodded determinedly.

That was the only treatment a traitor deserved.

…And I really was returning to my old ways faster than I wanted to admit.

It was like riding a bike. No matter how long ago it was when you last rode one, the moment you climbed onto the bike, you remembered how to ride it.

"Location? I'll have it done tonight."

"Carrot, stop following me," I clicked my tongue.

"I'm not following you," he looked anywhere but at my face while he rubbed his neck.

I sighed and turned to face him, "Then why are you here at my apartment?"


"I'm serious, Ichigo," I told him and rolled my eyes. "Go home. You have no business with what I'm going to do tonight."

We glared at each other for a full minute before I sighed and entered the building. This wasn't the time for arguing.

As always, the people in the foyer all lined up and bowed when I walked into the foyer. In unison, they greeted, "Good afternoon, Kime-sama, Ichigo-sama."

Ichigo jumped, "Holy… Do they always do this?"

I stepped into the elevator and waited for Ichigo to enter before I swiped my key card and pressed for the top level, "Every time."

Ichigo let out a whistle in awe, "I guess us normal people can't compare with rich ones like you, huh."

I rolled my eyes then closed them while I thought out a plan. When I heard the chime of the elevator, I stepped out of the elevator and headed straight to my room. Ichigo paused at the entranceway before hesitantly following me.

Picking up Chappy from the floor, I patted her as I walked straight to my wardrobe with Ichigo trailing behind me.

"This place is bigger than my room," he commented in amazement causing me to sigh again.

I picked out a simple, loose white dress that reached down to my mid-thighs then walked deeper into my closet. There was a white door at the end of the path and I placed my thumb on the sensor. With a click, the door swung open and Ichigo's jaw dropped.

Ignoring him, I walked in and placed the dress onto a chair before facing the various glass cabinets around me. After a moment of thought, I reached into one and took out a thigh sheath that had half a dozen blades already in place. Stepping across to the next glass case I chose another empty thigh holster. Taking another step to my left, I took out a key, unlocked the compartment and then took out two guns. Slipping an automatic pistol into the holster I then walked to Ichigo who stepped back in surprise.

"Last chance, Ichigo. You sure you want to come with me?"

He nodded and swallowed as his gaze slid over the weapons I had in my hand.

"If you say so," with a sigh, I walked into a small changing room set into the wall. Quickly slipping into the loose dress, I clipped the holsters in place, tidied my hair and stepped back out.

He followed me quietly until we reached the garage and I headed straight to a white motorcycle.

"Eh," he suddenly yelled and pointed at me and then at my snow-white motorbike. "You… You're the girl we saw that day…You're that Kime?"

Right, I've completely forgot.

I turned to look at him. "No… it wasn't me. That day I raced you at Hisagi's place was the first time I've ridden a bike in months."

"Then who…?"

"I don't know, Ichigo," I cut him off and clicked my tongue. It was bothering more than I wanted to admit. Who would want to impose as me? I bit my lip and hoped it was only a one-off thing. There was too much trouble happening around us already.

"Are you going to track her down?" He sounded oddly excited.

"It'll leave me no choice but to do that if that person goes around using my name and messing with my reputation. We're wasting time, get on," I said as calmly as I could. He climbed on behind me obediently. I quietly thanked the inventor of motorbike helmets when he hesitantly wrapped his arms around my waist.

"Drive slower this time…"

I rolled my eyes, "Let's go."

Fifteen minutes later, we arrived at a small, grey apartment building. I turned to Ichigo while reaching into my handbag, "Here, just in case."

He looked at me in surprise and then at the Glock in his hand. Without waiting for him to recover I headed inside the building.

Walking up the flight of stairs I stood outside the familiar entrance and took a deep breath before knocking on the door of the apartment complex.

I stared at the bullet shell in my palm. I only knew one type of gun that used these bullets - and knew only one person who used that type of gun.

There was no mistaking it.

"I'm coming, hold on a second," my head snapped up when I heard his voice from behind the closed door.

"Hey, Kaien, it's me," I greeted.

Like I mentioned before, I had known Shiba Kaien all my life. I treated and cared for him as if he was my older brother. He was both a friend and a teacher. I slowly locked up every memory of him as I waited for the door to open. It didn't matter how close he was to me anymore. He was an enemy of Kings and therefore an enemy of my brother and me.

The door opened and I took a deep breath, "Can we come in?"
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