Bleach: Words of the Copper Chain Book 2

Choices

ORIHIME WAS in a small, dark room. The only source of light came from a small window. Its light shone on an untouched plate of food that was a few feet from her. She sat on a chair, her head leaning against a wall, tears streaming down her cheek.

The door opened and she did not turn to see the entrant. He was of average height, had very pale skin, raven-hair, two thin, green lines running down his face like tears and was clad in a neatly buttoned, ¼, twin tailed coat over white Shinigami trousers and had a Zanpakutou in a green sheath, slung at his left side. He had one quarter of a horned skull on the left side of his head.

He looked down at her plate and turned to Orihime.

"You still haven't eaten?"

Orihime did not answer. He sighed and walked up to her.

"Do you want to die here?" He looked down at her.

She did not respond.

"Lord Aizen made it my duty to ensure that you survived and that has nothing to do with you being comfortable," he said, "Do you want me to force the food down your throat?"

Orihime swallowed, with dryness in her.

"Why are you doing this?" She asked.

The man furrowed his brow.

"Why are you keeping me in here? I'm no use to you," She said.

"It is not I who keeps you in here, I am simply fulfilling my duty as first Espada," He said, "I must do what I've been told."

"Kill me." Orihime said.

"You've only been here for a few days –,"

"Just kill me," Orihime said.

"And why should I do that?" The man asked.

"Clearly that's your plan," Orihime said, "Use me, and then kill me. So, get it over with."

The man looked down at Orihime and ignored her request.

"Do not let me find that you have not eaten," The man said.

The man began to leave.

"Ulquiorra," Orihime said.

Ulquiorra stopped.

"Help me," Orihime said.

He turned and walked back up to her.

"Clearly, you have gone mad," Ulquiorra said.

"You won't kill me and you're not planning to hurt me," Orihime said.

He looked at her blankly.

"Then help me," Orihime said.

"I cannot," Ulquiorra said.

"And why can't you?" Orihime asked.

"Because I have orders to follow," Ulquiorra said, "My own interests are unimportant."

"Your own interests?" Orihime asked.

Ulquiorra glanced at her plate. She sat up.

"Lord Aizen made it my duty to ensure that you survived and that has nothing to do with you being comfortable," Ulquiorra said, "But you must survive."

"What's the point of remaining alive if I'm going to die anyway?" Orihime asked.

Ulquiorra sighed and walked up to her.

"I have noticed that the guards are on the move, patrolling the halls more enthusiastically than usual. That means that there are intruders," Ulquiorra said.

Her eyes lit up at the statement.

"It most likely means that someone has come to save you or at least has come to kill Lord Aizen," He continued.

"Ichigo," Orihime muttered.

"It is a futile attempt whatever the reason," Ulquiorra said.

Orihime furrowed her brow and turned to him.

"Whether it's for you or anything else, coming to Las Noches will be their demise." Ulquiorra said.

"Don't say that." Orihime said.

"The inevitability is evident even in your voice." Ulquiorra said.

She looked away from him.

"Their road has ended and you know it." He said.

Orihime clenched her hands against her lap.

"The least you can to is survive," Ulquiorra said, "It'd be better than to die so ungracefully."

He headed for the door.

"You say your own interests don't key in," She said, "Maybe not in Aizen's plans, but they do in your life."

He turned to her.

"If you say it is in your own interests, then help me, Ulquiorra," Orihime said.

He frowned and looked away from her.

"Please," Orihime said.

Ulquiorra looked at Orihime and left the room.


ICHIGO LIFTED a large piece of rubble and tossed it aside. He breathed heavily as Shinji, Dondochakka, Pesche and Hiyori climbed over the debris.

"Nel!" Dondochakka said happily.

He and Pesche ran toward her then stopped in their tracks. They looked at her and their expressions dampened.

"You're sure about this?" Pesche asked.

"I don't have a choice," Nel said.

Dondochakka and Pesche looked at each other worriedly. That was, if their facial expressions were visible from underneath their masks.

Hiyori looked at Nnoitorra's corpse.

"That was some fight," Hiyori said, "Didn't think you'd survive. I'm impressed, Ichigo."

Ichigo stabilized his breathing and stood up.

"That's a lot coming from someone who got knocked out in seconds." Ichigo said.

"Hey, you weren't even here to see the fight!" Hiyori said.

"Would I be lying if I said so anyways?" Ichigo asked smugly.

Hiyori growled.

"Alright, let's get moving." Shinji said.

The guys ran onward, manoeuvring through the rubble and entered a hallway that was intact.

"Hold up, when did Nel get a Zanpakutou?" Hiyori asked.

Ichigo and Nel shared a glance.

"I knew it," Hiyori reached for her Zanpakutou.

Shinji blocked her.

"If Ichigo hasn't attacked her, then she's on our side," Shinji said, "You aren't born into a side."

Hiyori growled and sheathed her Zanpakutou. The guys continued down a hall when a wall exploded before them, causing them to halt abruptly.

Ichigo reached for a Zanpakutou when Renji stepped out of the wall.

"Ichigo, long time no see." Renji said.

"Wish it'd have been longer." Ichigo groaned.

"Hiyori, thought you'd be dead already." Kensei said.

Hiyori growled. Renji, Kensei, Mashiro, Aikawa, Rojuro and Lisa stepped out of the wall and into the hall.

"Well, since we're all here in once piece," Shinji tried to say.

"That will be far enough," A heavy voice came.

The guys turned to see a elderly and hefty man enter the hall. He had a thick white beard, a scarred face, a patch over his right eye, wore a white Shinigami kimono with black fuzz around the collar of his jacket, and had several rings on each hand.

The man drew out his Zanpakutou and a black mist exuded from the blade. It spread throughout the room and covered the walls, floor and ceiling. The guys ran away from the mist and into the hole in the wall Renji broke into.

Dondochakka struggled to climb in and Ichigo pulled him in, barely getting him out of the way of the mist.

The guys ran into the room where Renji's team fought Szayelaporro and looked for an exit.

"What was that stuff?" Hiyori asked.

"I don't know." Nel said.

"You know who that guy was?" Hiyori asked.

"His name is Barragan, but that's all I know about him," Nel said, "He is the third strongest Espada,"

"Wait; if you're the fourth, then he's the third?" Ichigo asked.

Nel nodded.

"What do you mean fourth?" Shinji asked.

"Espada are numbered by strength in descending order and I'm the fourth strongest," Nel said.

Shinji turned to Ichigo.

"She is pretty powerful," Ichigo said with a shrug.

Nel smiled slightly.

"Well, we'd better not wait to find out what that mist does." Shinji said.

"Uh, guys." Pesche said.

Pesche pointed at a Hollow's corpse that the mist slowly engulfed. The corpse began to rot rapidly as the mist covered it and slowly turned to ash.

"Oh, man." Hiyori said.

"That's gonna happen to us if we get touched," Dondochakka said, "That's bad, you know what I'm talking about?"

"We gotta get outta here!" Lisa said.

Ichigo looked around. The room had no exit.

"Well, no use in being polite." Ichigo said.


A WALL exploded and the guys jumped out of the wall and into another hallway. The mist slowly covered the room they came from.

"Come on!" Ichigo yelled.

The guys ran down the hall and the mist followed them. They ran into another hallway and Aikawa fell behind.

"Come on, we have to get outta here!" Ichigo yelled.

The mist covered his foot and he gave out a bloodcurdling scream.

"Aikawa!" Mashiro cried.

Aikawa's foot began to rot and it spread across his leg. Mashiro ran toward him and Shinji grabbed her arm.

"It's over, Mashiro." Shinji said.

"But, Aikawa's getting killed." Mashiro said.

"And so will you if we stay here." Shinji said.

Mashiro looked at Aikawa worriedly as he fell over.

"Run!" Aikawa yelled.

Tears welled up in Mashiro's eyes and Shinji pulled her. The guys ran on and the black mist slowly engulfed Aikawa.

His body rotted from his leg and spread around his body. It slowly turned to ash as the mist covered him. His screams quietened as the life left his breath.

The man stepped into the hall and the mist slowly spread apart as he walked. He walked passed Aikawa's corpse and the mist moved away from it. The corpse, now a pile of ash, disintegrated and spread across the floor.


ICHIGO AND the guys ran down a hall. Nel turned around and saw the mist approaching.

"It's still following us!" She cried.

"I got this." Ichigo said.

He grabbed his Zanpakutou and flipped over the guys, landing behind them.

"Go on without me." Ichigo said.

The guys ran on and Nel stopped, looking at him.

"Go!" Ichigo yelled.

Nel ran on and Ichigo drew out his Zanpakutou.

"Getsuga Tenshou!" Ichigo yelled.

Ichigo sent out the black wave and it collided with the mist. The energy dissipated however and merged with the mist.

"Oh crap." Ichigo said.

Ichigo flew away and over the guys, landing in front of them.

"It didn't work!" Ichigo yelled as he ran.

"We're all gonna die!" Dondochakka cried.

"Well, goodbye swimsuit mags." Lisa said.

"Goodbye manga." Rojuro said.

"Goodbye not dying!" Renji said.

"Please, please, don't kill me!" Pesche prayed.

Ichigo looked around and saw a dead end.

"Oh, you've gotta be kidding me!" Hiyori yelled.

"Oh, great." Renji said.

"Well, guess we are gonna die." Shinji said.

Dondochakka wailed.

"Of all the ways to die, did I have to die with you, Mashiro?" Kensei groaned.

Tears flowed down her cheeks and he looked away from her.

"Yeah, bad time for jokes, isn't it?" Kensei said.

"Aikawa's dead." Mashiro said.

Mashiro wiped her tears and Kensei looked at her concernedly.

"I'm sorry, Mashiro." Kensei said, placing his hand on her shoulder.

Mashiro looked at him and gave a slight, wistful smile.

The guys reached the dead end and turned, seeing the mist approach them.

"What do we do now?" Pesche asked.

Ichigo looked around the room. Nel whimpered, pressing her back against the wall. Kensei saw Mashiro still crying and looked at the others. He looked around the hall and frowned.

"Oh, I'm not gonna die like this!" Kensei yelled.

He turned around and punched the wall, destroying it. He looked out and there was no more building left. He looked down and there was several feet between them and the ground.

Dondochakka clung to Renji and whimpered.

"Get off me!" Renji yelled.

Renji punched Dondochakka off him and he cried.

"What're we gonna do?" Lisa asked.

"We're gonna jump," Kensei said.

"Are you kidding me? It must be over two hundred feet!" Pesche yelled.

"It's either that or rotting to death," Kensei said.

Pesche turned and looked at the mist behind him.

"Okay guys, on three," Kensei said.

"Okay," Nel said.

"One."

Dondochakka whimpered.

"Alright, tell me when, I'm ready to go." Nel said.

"Two,"

"I was born ready, yes." Nel said, rubbing her hands together and jumping around.

"Calm down," Kensei said.

Kensei looked back and frowned.

"Three!" Nel yelled.

The guys jumped all except for Nel, Ichigo and Dondochakka. Dondochakka whimpered and looked at the mist. He closed his eyes tightly and slowly crawled toward the edge of the floor.

He clung to the wall and let his feet fall. He slowly pushed himself back and held to the edge of the floor. He looked down and closed his eyes again.

Nel kicked Dondochakka and he fell, screaming loudly. She stood back and looked at Ichigo who had his hands in his pocket and was chewing gum.

"So, what's the plan?" Nel asked.

"Nothing." Ichigo said blankly.

"So, we're just gonna die?" Nel asked.

"Yup." Ichigo said.

He blew a bubble of chewing gum and she folded her arms.

"Wonder how far a drop it is." she said.

He looked around then looked at the mist calmly.

"Maybe … two hundred, four hundred feet," Ichigo said.

"Yeah, I guess." Nel said, "Where'd you get the gum from?"

"Don't know, must be the writers." Ichigo said blankly.

The two looked out at the other buildings in Las Noches.

"You were totally scared." Ichigo said with a chuckle.

"I wasn't scared." Nel said.

"You were totally whimpering." Ichigo said.

"Dondochakka was." Nel said.

"Woman up." Ichigo said.

"Why are you telling me that?" Nel asked.

"'Cuz my plan is jumping." Ichigo said.

"Wait, what?" Nel asked.

Ichigo swept Nel off her feet and jumped.

"Are you insane!" Nel screamed.

Ichigo flew down and threw Nel into the air. She screamed loudly as she ascended above the building. Ichigo flew down and grabbed Dondochakka's foot and Shinji's arm. He tossed them upward.

Nel plummeted to the ground, screaming loudly. Ichigo swooped down and grabbed Hiyori's leg, shouldered Mashiro and grabbed Renji's arm. He threw them up into the air. He flew down, grabbed Rojuro's arm, Lisa's leg and shouldered Pesche, throwing them up into the air.

Nel screamed and shut her eyes.


NEL SLOWLY opened her eyes and looked around. She was in Ichigo's arms. She looked up at him and smiled.

Ichigo landed on the roof of the building and the others were groaning as they rose to their feet. He landed and set her down.

"Could you warn us next time?" Hiyori asked.

"I think I'm gonna throw up." Pesche covered his mouth.

"Well, don't do it on me!" Lisa yelled.

She threw him off her and rose to her feet. Mashiro shook her head and stood up.

"Where's Kensei?" Mashiro asked.

Kensei jumped high up into the air and landed on the roof.

"Hey, what happened to the plan?" Kensei asked.

"It got better." Ichigo said.

Nel smiled at Ichigo and looked away from him. The guys got to their feet and dusted themselves off.

"So, where do we go from here?" Shinji asked.

"I dunno, it'd be easier if we could sense Orihime's reiatsu." Ichigo said.

"I can sense Aizen's." Shinji said.

Shinji looked at the other Vizards and they shared looks.

"We're not going after him yet." Ichigo said.

"That's what we came here for." Lisa said.

"Yeah and now we've lost someone already." Ichigo said.

"Well, I'd rather die trying to take revenge." Kensei said.

Ichigo looked around and could tell that the other Vizards agreed with Kensei. He walked up to them.

"Look, I came here to rescue Orihime and I'm not doing anything else before that." Ichigo said.

"Well, then we have very different reasons for being here." Shinji said.

"No, we have the same reasons." Ichigo said.

Shinji turned to him.

"An Arrancar killed Rukia and a Hollow killed my mother. I am here to save Orihime and avenge Rukia because she died saving her." Ichigo said, "I am not leaving her and until I save her and when I save her, I will kill each and every Arrancar here."

Nel's eyes widened.

"Except for you," Ichigo said.

She smiled.

"So, are you with me?" Ichigo turned to the Vizards.

The Vizards shared looks.

"We all know these guys don't even come close to being as strong as Aizen and they've already beaten us down," Ichigo said, "The only way we can take him down is if we work together."

Mashiro looked at Kensei then looked at their leader, Shinji.

"Aright, let's do it," Shinji said with a sigh, "Let's go save Orihime."

Ichigo smirked and walked up to the edge of the roof.

"Now, you guys ready to ride Kurosaki Airways?" Ichigo asked.

"Fine." Hiyori groaned.

The guys walked up to Ichigo when the black mist shot out of the ground and enveloped Rojuro.

"Rojuro!" Shinji yelled.

Rojuro screamed as his body rotted.

"Come on!" Kensei yelled.

Kensei grabbed Mashiro and Lisa and jumped toward another building. Ichigo grabbed Nel, Dondochakka and Pesche and flew toward another roof. The guys remained and looked at the mist.

"Oh man, it's getting close." Lisa said.

"Yeah." Shinji said lazily.

He levitated into the air and hovered lazily toward the building Ichigo was heading to, his hands in his pocket. Hiyori and Lisa looked at him with shock.

"You do know we can fly, right?" Shinji asked.

"Oh, right." Lisa said.

Hiyori slapped her forehead. She, Lisa, Renji and Shinji flew toward the other building.

The guys landed on the other building and looked at the building they came from.

"I think we're safe here." Ichigo said.

"We're not safe anywhere in Hueco Mundo." Nel said.

"Well," Ichigo said unsheathing his Zanpakutou, "We're safe from the mist."

Ichigo threw his Zanpakutou into the head of a skull man.

"Let's get moving," Ichigo said.

The guys walked onward and Ichigo dislodged his Zanpakutou from the skull man.


THE GUYS ran down a hallway and came to a three-way intersection. They looked around.

"Okay, we should split up here and cover more ground," Shinji said, "If anyone finds Orihime, radio it in."

"Got it." Ichigo said.

Ichigo and Nel ran down the hallway to the right, Shinji, Lisa and Mashiro ran down the hallway to the left, and Kensei, Hiyori and Renji ran down the hallway straight ahead.

Dondochakka and Pesche ran up to the intersection, panting heavily.

"Hey, where'd the other guys go?" Pesche asked.

The two looked around.

"They ditched us, you know what I'm talking about?" Dondochakka said.

"Well, let's keep moving." Pesche said.

Dondochakka and Pesche ran down the hallway straight ahead.


ULQUIORRA WALKED into Orihime's room and saw her still seated before an untouched plate.

"You are merely adding to your suffering by doing this." Ulquiorra said, "Why won't you eat?"

Orihime did not respond. He sighed and walked up to her.

"Well, the time has come," Ulquiorra said, "Aizen has ordered me to take you to him."

She did not respond and he closed his eyes.

"Come with me." Ulquiorra said.

Ulquiorra offered his hand to Orihime stood on her own. She headed for the door and he followed her.


ULQUIORRA WALKED down a large hallway, lined up by pillars on either side. Orihime followed him, looking around solemnly.

"You will be unharmed if you cooperate, I promise you that," Ulquiorra said, "It will be over soon."

The room began to shake, halting them.

"What's happening?" Orihime asked.

The floor exploded and Ichigo flew out of it, carrying Nel in his arms. He landed and set her on her feet.

"Who are you?" Ulquiorra asked.

Ichigo looked at Ulquiorra and frowned. He drew his Zanpakutou and saw Orihime standing behind him.

"Well, whoever you are is unimportant," Ulquiorra said, unsheathing his Zanpakutou, "You are clearly not an Arrancar. You will die by my sword."

He turned to Nel.

"It is a shame you will have to die as well," Ulquiorra said, "You had potential, but you tossed it aside."

"The only thing that will be tossed aside is your corpse!" Ichigo yelled.

"Ulquiorra, he's my friend." Orihime said.

Ulquiorra turned to Orihime.

"Don't hurt him." She continued.

Ulquiorra frowned and turned to Ichigo.

"My own interests are unimportant," Ulquiorra said, "He must die."

Ichigo held his Zanpakutou to his side and it began to glow. Black energy flowed out of it and wove around him like a dark cloth.

Ichigo flew toward Ulquiorra with a slash of his glowing Zanpakutou. He blocked the strike and moved out of the way of the wave. He kicked his hand away and they exchanged two slashes. They interlocked blades.

Ulquiorra kicked Ichigo back and swung down. He rolled out of the way and swung his blade at his head. He dodged it and swung at him. Ichigo dodged the strike.

"Getsuga Tenshou!"Ichigo yelled.

Ichigo sent the energy wave at Ulquiorra who simply waved his hand at it, dissipating it.

Ichigo's eyes widened with shock and he frowned.

"Dammit." Ichigo said.

Ulquiorra stabbed at Ichigo, who dodged and swung his blade down on him. He blocked it and pointed at him. Green energy collected at his fingertip. Ichigo jumped out of the way as Ulquiorra shot an energy beam at him.

The beam shot toward Nel and she tried to suck it in. The beam did not go into her mouth and it was fast approaching. She jumped out of the way and the beam smashed into a wall behind her and exploded. The explosion sent out a wave the flung Nel against a wall. She went unconscious.

"Nel!" Ichigo yelled.

Ulquiorra swung at Ichigo and he jumped out of the way. He swung at his neck, arm and leg. Ichigo wove through the slashes and jumped back. His sword exuded black energy and he jumped at him with a swing.

Ulquiorra blocked the slash and pushed him back. He shot a beam at him and he dodged it. The beam hit the ceiling and exploded, sending debris falling toward him. The debris fell on him, slamming him onto the ground.

Ichigo pushed the debris aside and Ulquiorra directed another beam at him. He jumped out of the way and the resultant explosion sent him smacking against a wall. Ulquiorra slashed at Ichigo and they locked blades.

Ichigo spat blood at Ulquiorra's face. He kicked him in the gut and tossed him away. He wiped the blood off his face and swung down at him. He rolled away from the slash and rose to his feet.

Ichigo sent a Getsuga Tenshou at Ulquiorra who dissipated it with a wave of his hand. He shot an energy beam at him, sending him hurling back and slamming against a wall. He struggled to his feet, wiping blood of his bruised face.

Ichigo panted heavily. His chest was badly bruised and part of his attire had burnt. He grimaced and placed his hand over his face. He donned his Hollow mask, catching Ulquiorra off guard.

Ichigo roared and flew toward him, his blade exploding with energy. He slashed at Ulquiorra and they locked blades. The latter's eyes widened in shock and the former growled like a carnivore.


A BUILDING'S wall exploded with part of the resultant smoke shooting out. Ichigo and Ulquiorra flew through the air, clashing blades.

Ulquiorra kicked Ichigo with a back flip and shot an energy beam at him. He spun around the beam and flew back at him with his glowing blade. He blocked the slash, but the force was too much.

Ichigo pushed Ulquiorra into the air and flung him upward. He balanced himself and sent an energy beam at him. He dodged it and sent a Getsuga Tenshou at him. The blast hit him, sending out an explosion that resulted in a shockwave.

Orihime watched the fight from the hole in the wall. She heard stirring and turned to see Nel coming to. She ran toward her.

The smoke dissipated and Ulquiorra hovered in mid air, breathing heavily with his jacket heavily tattered. He frowned.

"Resurreccion, Segunda Etapa," Ulquiorra said.

Black energy exploded out of his body, sending out heat waves that forced Ichigo to shield his eyes with his forearm. The heat waves dissipated and he slowly removed his forearm. His eyes widened with shock.

Ulquiorra's clothes and Zanpakutou had disappeared. He had two long horns, green eyes with yellow pupils, the tear lines had turned into smears down his cheeks and his bare chest had a large hole in the middle which had a black mark running down his stomach like smeared paint. His skin was completely white and he had black fur on his arms. He had two large black bat wings, a tail and his lower body was covered in black fur with two large patches of fur extending from his lower back and large claws extending out from his feet.

"Urahara was right, Hollows are like demons," Ichigo said.

"Those are your final words? Disappointing," Ulquiorra said.

Ulquiorra swooped toward Ichigo with such speed that he broke a sound barrier. He tried to block his Zanpakutou and he easily grabbed it and his face, breaking his mask and tossing him into the building.


URAHARA KISUKE stepped out of a trolley and walked down a street. He walked passed a sign that read "SAN FRANSOKYO INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY".

Ever since he had returned from the Sereitei with Ichigo, Rukia and Yoruichi, Urahara knew that something was strange about the world. People had been accessing the Precipice World without the use of reiatsu and a foreign being had crossed over to their world.

The earth had changed as well. Karakura Town was no longer in Asia, but was now in a continent that was the mixture of America and Asia, Amerisia. Politics had changed and there were different presidents in power. Things had changed so drastically and yet no one other than himself seemed to notice the difference. He knew that he would sound insane if he tried to explain it to Yamamoto or anyone else, but he knew that someone out there knew.

He discovered a secret espionage agency, SHIELD, Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division, and had hacked into their archives. He discovered that the continents of the earth had merged and that new locations were popping up all over the world. The agency itself was unclear about what was going on, but had important information from a Tony Stark that dimensions had merged because of an accident that happened in a city called San Fransokyo.

Urahara did all his research and knew that earth was forever changed and nothing could be done about it. One thing however struck him and he needed to speak to the man who had the fate of Amersia and Karakura in his hands.


ORIHIME KNEELED beside Nel, conjuring up a force field around her body that was slowly healing her. Ichigo burst through a nearby wall and crashed onto a pillar. Ulquiorra flew into the room.

"No, don't hurt him!" Orihime cried.

Ulquiorra landed and ignored her.

He walked up to Ichigo and lifted him by his neck. He kicked him in the gut and tossed him aside. He bounced on the ground and fell through a nearby pillar. He fell on the ground and spat out blood.

Ichigo tried to stand up and Ulquiorra kicked him in the head. He stomped on his hand, halting his fall and he grabbed his face. He held his hand upward, like he was holding a javelin and an green energy spear formed in it.

Ulquiorra threw Ichigo toward a wall and threw the spear at him. He flew out of the way, letting the spear hit the wall. The spear exploded, leaving a gaping hole in the wall and causing a fire to start.

"Ulquiorra, please!"Orihime cried.

Ulquiorra turned to her and he sighed. Ichigo struggled to his feet and spat out blood. Ulquiorra walked up to him.

He conjured up a spear and stabbed his leg, pinning him to the ground.

"No!" Orihime yelled.

Orihime ran up to Ulquiorra as he lifted his hand to form another spear. She held his hand.

"Please, don't do this," Orihime said.

He turned to her, seeing the tears in her eyes.

"Please," Orihime said, a lump forming in her throat.

Ulquiorra turned to Ichigo, seeing him bleeding out on the ground.

"I don't have a choice," Ulquiorra said.

"No, you do, you can let him live. Please, don't do this," Orihime said.

Ulquiorra set his arm down and she let go of his hand.

"Thank you," Orihime said.

"I have orders to follow and they include killing all those who intrude in the Sereitei," Ulquiorra said.

Ulquiorra conjured an energy spear and stabbed it into Ichigo's back.

"Ichigo!" Orihime cried.

Ulquiorra held Orihime's arm and walked away with her.

"Aizen wanted to see you," Ulquiorra said.

Orihime cried and struggled, but Ulquiorra pulled her regardless.

Sounds muffled and the crackling of fire echoed. Ichigo's vision was blurry. The light of flames reflected from the right and dust filled the air. He coughed and could feel immense pain spreading through his body. He strained to turn to Nel who was lying amongst the rubble.

She turned to him, her beautiful hazel eyes buried behind tears that welled up within her. She struggled to move, but her body would not let her.

"Ichigo …," She breathed weakly.

Ichigo's body felt like it was under a ton of bricks. The pain was immense, but was quickly rivalled by the misery that welled up within him.

He had failed to avenge Rukia's death and he had failed to avenge his mother. He failed to save Orihime and now he was bleeding on the ground in a place eons away from home. He was alone. Neither his friends, his sisters nor his father were anywhere nearby. All he had left was the sight of the beauty before him.

Seeing Nel now, the girl he was growing fond of, hurt more than the spear that drove through his lung. He would rather be boiled alive or ripped to shreds by an army of Hollows than to die seeing that he had another person to add to the list of people he had failed.

Blood that oozed from his mouth. Nel said something, but the loudness of the silence washing over him stopped him from hearing what she had to say.

Everything went black.


GIN ICHIMARU walked into Aizen's throne room with a man following him.

"Lord Aizen, we have a guest," Gin said.

Aizen's eyes lit up when he saw the man.

"Ah, what a surprise," Aizen said, "What brings you here, Loki Laufeyson?"

For info about the sequel, please check the Guide To The RealDone Universe. Thank you for reading.

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