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The Hime Squad

By Rebecca Collins

Romance

The Meaning of Heart

The Meaning Of Heart – Chapter 1

It was entirely unexpected. Even as I lay dying before Ichigo's eyes, as I beg him to do the final blow and end it sooner, that woman's eyes began to tear. I never understood the point of crying. But I was starting to. For some reason, although I was that woman's captor, she cared that I was dying. She reaches her hand out to me, and in a moment of whim, I reach back. Something changes in her eyes as I begin to fade away. She takes a step forward, but Ichigo moves to block. She knocks his arm away, and puts her hands to her hair clips. I look onto the scene, stunned. "Shuno, Ayame, Soten Kisshun I reject!" she cries out. The two healing fairies make an oblong shape and my eyes widen as the pain from my wounds is erased. Even through everything I've done to Ichigo, trying my best to kill him, the man she loved, she brushes him aside to heal me. So if somehow her healing didn't work, I could die, knowing the meaning of caring.

At some point during her healing I must have passed out from exhausting my reiatsu. I was still surprised I could wake up again. Still, my carefully schooled expression showed nothing of my emotion. I sat up, fighting a wince as some of the wounds she hadn't had time to heal reopened. The minute the battle of Las Noches ended, Orihime went around healing the Espada that she could. And every one of them, like myself, pledged a loyalty to that woman. The woman who would heal her enemies after a battle, even though every one of us tried to kill her precious friends. Even Nnoitra, once healed, gave his loyalty to her. Although it was unspoken, whenever that woman was in the room, he became just a little more alert. She was their Hime, the one that cared for them when it became obvious that we were once merely tools.

So when we heard the battle was winding down on the other side, and that Ichigo had taken off after Aizen and all of us that she'd saved were willing to band together, open a Garganta and walk our Hime through. Following behind us, were the Shinigami that Orihime had also healed. It was amazing the strength of one woman. When we walked through to the fake Karakura, we saw everyone that was gathering around there dying wounded. "Gather them all together!" Shouts Orihime. "All of them, even the Arrancar! If they are alive, they will be healed. Please only the critically wounded, Fourth Division can take care of the smaller wounds of the Shinigami, and I will later take care of the Arrancar!" Orihime cries. The wounded Yammamoto looked outraged.

"What's the meaning of this? Are you truly a traitor?" he asks in anger. "That we would send forth members from my own army to rescue you and you rescue your captors, our enemies?" Several of the Shinigami looked disgruntled. Orihime puffed up, the strongest any of us had ever seen her.

"This war isn't about them. Its about those of yours, that defected and used them as a tool. It doesn't matter that they were once your mortal enemies, what they are now are sentient beings that mistakenly idolized a man that many of your own had idolized. Look at Momo Hinamori! What's become of her because of that man!" our Hime exclaims, shocking many. "Bring them forward thos of you that wish to be healed by the likes of a 'traitor'."

All of the remaining living Arrancar that were barely holding on were carefully brought forward and laid out in a line. The shinigami were brought next. "Shuno, Ayame, Soten Kisshun I reject!" Unexpectedly, Tsubaki pops out as well. He tugs on her hair, calling out her name but she ignores him. Finally when those being healed were beginning to stabilized, she looked at her angered fairy.

"You can't keep healing this way, you are running out of reiatsu." Tsubaki says. Orihime shakes her head. She'd been unable to do anything during the battles, and the least should could do was this. Everyone else was running dangerously low, and so could hers. But a pale hand grasped her shoulder, and other hands touched her arms, some grasped her legs, and somehow reiatsu was flowing into her. The Arrancar were sharing their reiatsu with her.

"Only what you can spare, I've saved you already you aren't going to die now," she said. The pale hand that first grasped her, fell away, and Ulquiorra stepped forward. He looked at her, with his sad eyes then at the Head Captain.

"All of us remaining Arrancar from Las Noches have pledged our loyalties to this woman. We will fight her battles, not Aizen's. We are no longer your enemies," Ulquiorra says. He turns back to their Hime, and all of the previously healed Arrancar who were sharing their reiatsu. Suddenly, the Kuchiki noble taps the shoulder of Grimmjow, who moves aside. He puts his hand on the girls shoulder in Grimmjow's stead. Kenpachi replaces Nnoitra. Rukia and Renji replace Loly and Menoly. Nelliel becomes her Adult form, and replaces Szayel. Orihime smiles, with tears in her eyes, as Hinagiku, Baigon, Lily, and Tsubaki grab handfuls of her hair and give her their strength as well. The Captain Commander stood stunned watching his soldiers and the Arrancar woman help the traitor. Finally, she was done, they were mostly healed. Orihime took a cautious step toward the Captain of the Second Division. She points to the woman's arm and Soi Fon's eyes widen. Shuno and Ayame cover where Soi's arm once was.

"But it's gone, Barragon destroyed it!" Soi Fon exclaims. She stared on stunned as her arm began to regenerate. Grimmjow stepped up beside their Hime.

"And that bastard Tosen obliterated mine," he says, flexing the arm Orihime had repaired. He slung an arm over the sweating Hime's shoulders, giving her the reiatsu he'd regenerated in the respite Byakuya had given him. Soi Fon flexed her new hand in awe. Orihime began to collapse, and Grimmjow caught her. He carried her back to the Arrancar group, and any of them that had on an extra coat laid it down on a flat piece of ground for her to rest on. Grimmjow rolled up his jacket and stuck it under her head.

The fallen begin to awaken and look around in stunned silence. All of them were wondering how they were alive. As explanations were made, and their Hime awoke from their nap, the other Arrancar pledged loyalty as well. Orihime stood. "I'm going to where Ichigo is," she declares. A portal was opened to the real Karakura town, and Ichigo's friends, as well as Ulquiorra and Grimmjow went through. The latter two went as extra protection for their Hime. They first run into Tatsuki, Keigo and them. She heals their scrapes, as her spiritually aware friends stared at her. She moves on, finding a sobbing Rangiku with a dying Gin. He was her next on the list. When he was stable, she continues. Finding Ichigo about to use the final Getsuga. "Tsubaki! Koten Zanshun I reject!" she says, waving towards Aizen. Everyone stared in shock of her rejection abilities. Tsubaki went straight threw Aizen and turned to investigate his handy work. Aizen screamed in agony. It was apparent that every attack she'd ever done with Tsubaki had lacked the intent this one had. Aizen began to dissipate as Hime ran to a completely stunned Ichigo. "Now there's no reason to give your life," she said, catching Ichigo as he collapsed.

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