Private

Chapter 25

Chapter 25:

Ichigo sat on the sofa and his frown deepened every time Nel squealed in delight at the kitten or Grimmjow laughed. He just didn't see what was so adorable about it. Yeah, it was a small, white fuzzy kitten, so what?

He looked up when Nel came back in and she grinned at him. "Isn't she just so adorable?"

"Yeah, I guess."

Nel rolled her eyes at Ichigo's less than enthusiastic tone. "You'll come around eventually, looks like she's here to stay. Anyway, I'm off out to grab some things for her." Nel opened the door and called over her shoulder as he left. "Have fun with our parents!"

Ichigo groaned. "Damn, I was better of forgetting Nel!"

"Better of forgetting what?" Grimmjow asked, walking into the room to sit next to him and frowned in confusion.

Ichigo sighed and shook his head. "About your parents." He looked at Grimmjow and frowned. "Where's the fur ball?"

"She has a name." Grimmjow chuckled and slung an arm over the orange haired teens shoulder, placing a kiss to his temple. "And it's really cute that you're jealous." He winced when Ichigo elbowed him in the ribs and stood up with a huff, walking into the bedroom without a backwards glance.

Ichigo sighed heavily and pulled his jumper off, his shirt and tie soon following before he started hunting for a shirt. Even after practically moving in with Grimmjow, he still hadn't adopted the ability to be clean. Finally finding a clean one, Ichigo pulled it on before changing his trousers and joining Grimmjow again.

He sat down next to him and scoffed when he saw Pantera curled up on his lap. "Fur ball."

Grimmjow glanced at him and grinned, leaning towards the pouting teen to kiss him and was pleased to see the put disappear afterwards. "Does she really bother you that much?"

Ichigo shifted uncomfortably and shrugged. "I dunno, just never had a pet so I don't see the point. You have to fork out so much money for stupid shit and what do you get in return? Affection?"

"Mmm, but it's worth it." Hearing a knock on the door, Grimmjow stood and dropped Pantera in Ichigo's arms and grinned at the face Ichigo pulled. "Pet her for a bit."

Ichigo's eyes narrowed as he followed Grimmjow's process across the room before sighing and looking at Pantera who was sat looking at him expectantly. "Hey." Damn this is stupid; I'm talking to a cat. Now I've gotta try and make friends with the damn thing. He slowly scratched behind one of her ears, sighing in relief when she purred and curled up on him. "Well, I guess you're not too bad…"

He looked up when Grimmjow shut the door, stiffening when he saw he wasn't alone. Grimmjow gave Ichigo a small smile before looking at his parents again. "You remember Ichigo."

"Yes." His father just looked at him whilst his mother nodded, not altogether hostile which made him feel that tiny bit better.

Ichigo cleared his throat and stood up, glancing at Grimmjow. "I should go clean up my stuff, and then I should probably go."

Grimmjow frowned, following him into the bedroom to leave his parents to settle in. "Where are you going?"

He sighed and sat on the bed, looking at Grimmjow with a small smile. "I don't want to intrude, besides, I'm pretty sure they weren't expecting me here and probably don't want me here either."

"So what?" Grimmjow moved to sit next to him and grabbed one of his hands. "You shouldn't care what they think. Besides, you live here dumbass so you're not leaving. They have to get used to you, simple." He ran a finger over Ichigo's ring. "And they need to know about this."

"Mmm." Ichigo cupped his cheek and kissed him softly. "Fine, but this isn't going to end well, is it?"

"Nope, I doubt it will."

He chuckled before standing up and smiling at Grimmjow. "Thanks, I guess."

"You're, welcome, now c'mon, they'll be waiting for us."

He grabbed Ichigo's hand again and led him from the bedroom to find his parents on the sofa and Pantera lapping up the attention. His mother turned to look at him and smiled. "When did you get her? She's so sweet?"

Grimmjow grinned and dragged Ichigo over so they could sit on the adjacent sofa. "Today, found her abandoned in an alleyway so deciding to bring her home with us." He glanced at Ichigo and smiled proudly. "We went to get Ichi's results from school."

"Oh, how was that?"

She looked at Ichigo who was glad for her making the effort and managed his own small smile. "I got the grades to get into University."

"What are you planning to study?"

"Art."

Grimmjow's father scoffed at the statement and Grimmjow frowned at him. "Is something wrong with that?"

"Art is a subject for those who limit themselves, those who can't achieve." He looked at Ichigo who flinched at the cold look. "People beneath your status Grimmjow."

Grimmjow opened his mouth to argue, but Ichigo beat him to it. "You're wrong." He said quietly, gaining everyone's attention. "I chose to do Art because I like it, if I wanted to, I could've been a doctor. But Art is something I want to do, so don't belittle me or think I'm incapable of achieving. I'm perfectly capable of being who and what I want to be."

He stopped suddenly and frowned, closing his mouth before looking down at his knees and Grimmjow couldn't help but grin proudly at him for speaking up like that. His father was looking at him in sheer surprise and he could see his mother was trying not to laugh. Thankfully for them all before an argument could break out, Nel came in, her hands full of bags stuffed with an assortment of cat essentials and treats.

"Hey, can someone help me out here?" Ichigo stood and took the bags form her silently, taking them into the kitchen. "Uh, thanks Ichigo?" She looked at her brother and parents and frowned. "What happened?"

Grimmjow grinned. "Ichigo spoke up for himself."

"That boy needs to learn his place."

Grimmjow rolled his eyes at the comment before waving it off. "Whatever dad, you just weren't expecting him to do it. Word of warning, Ichigo can be fiery when he wants to so don't provoke him. He's the guy I always got into trouble fighting when we were younger." He laughed at his face when he told him that. "Guess I forgot to mention that huh?"

Shaking his head in amusement, Grimmjow went into the kitchen to find Ichigo taking everything out the bags and observing them carefully. He paused when he saw Grimmjow and sighed heavily before setting the box down. "Hey."

"Hey." He walked over to the younger teen and pulled him into his arms, kissing him quickly. "Damn that was good, you should've seen his face when you finished. And when I told him we used to fight, too damn funny."

Ichigo blushed and grasped the front of Grimmjow's shirt. "Sorry, I let him get the better of me. You don't think I overstepped it do you?"

"Overstepped? Nah, dad just thinks you're someone who can't do something with their life. It was a shock for him to realise you actually have an idea of what you're doing, that's all." Grimmjow nuzzled his hair and smiled. "Don't be afraid to speak out Ichi, the more you do it, the sooner he'll respect you."

Ichigo snorted at the statement. "Yeah right, I'd like to see that happen." He sighed and stepped out of Grimmjow's arms to throw a cat toy at him. "Help me put this shit somewhere suitable."

"Can do."

When they were done, Ichigo groaned and collapsed on the sofa, happy to ignore everyone in favour of rolling his aching shoulder. He opened an eye when Grimmjow sat next to him and smiled when he was pulled closer, resting his head on Grimmjow's chest. He dozed happily, fading in and out of the conversation but never heard anything directed at him so found no need to join in.

He yawned and grasped Grimmjow's shirt. "Grimm…"

"Yeah Ichi?"

Ichigo sighed and sat up straighter, blinking several times to clear his vision and when he did, he found all eyes were on him and blushed. "What?"

"What's that on your hand?" It was Grimmjow's mother who asked as she leant forward and frowned slightly.

Ichigo stiffened and looked at his hand lying innocently on Grimmjow's chest and cursed himself when he saw it was his left hand and his ring was now on full display for everyone to see. "It's a, umm… ring?"

Grimmjow rolled his eyes. "It's an engagement ring, I proposed and Ichi said yes obviously."

The silence that ensued made Ichigo shift uncomfortably under the heavy weight. He pulled his hand back and hid it from view, flinching when Grimmjow suddenly grabbed his hand and pulled it out again, giving him a questioning look. Ichigo shook his head and pulled his hand back, quickly covering it again and Grimmjow frowned, opening his mouth to ask what was wrong but his father spoke over him.

"Engaged?" His asked in disbelief, looking between the two. "Surely you're joking."

"Nope." Grimmjow shook his head. "We are and we will get married, at some point." He looked at Ichigo questioningly. "Right?"

"Sure."

He frowned at the murmur, but before he could ask why his father stood up abruptly. "This is preposterous. You want to marry that kid? Have you lost your mind?!"

Grimmjow scowled and stood up as well. "No, this is probably the most sensible thing I've ever done. You just can't get over yourself and see how great Ichigo is!"

"How dare you speak to me like that, I am your father!"

"And I'm your son!" Grimmjow sighed heavily and ran a hand through his hair. "I don't care what you think, I'm marrying Ichigo, and you can't stop us."

"Grimmshaw." Grimmjow's mother stood and placed a hand on the enraged man's arm gently. "Can't you accept this? It's too late to stop it, just let them be."

The man looked like he was about to explode but exhaled slowly and sank bank into the chair. "You're right, nothing to do now. Let him make his own mistakes." He muttered to himself as his wife sat down next to him again.

Grimmjow snorted. "Mistakes, yeah whatever." He sighed and sat down next to Ichigo and went to touch him but Ichigo stood abruptly and brushed him away.

"Excuse me."

He left the room, shutting the door to their bedroom quietly behind him before sinking onto the bed with a heavy sigh and cradling his head in his hands. Grimmjow's father's reaction had shaken him, he didn't realise someone could be so against them, so angered by their relationship. Was he really making the right choice?

He was jerked from his thoughts when the door opened and Grimmjow slipped in, shutting the door before walking over to him and crouched in front of him. "What's wrong?"

Ichigo sighed and looked down at his hands, twirling his ring gently. "I… don't know if this is right."

"What?"

"Us…" Ichigo looked at Grimmjow and bit his lip. "Is this right? How can it be when your dad hates me? Do we really stand a chance?"

He flinched when he was suddenly pushed back on the bed and Grimmjow knelt over him, glaring at him furiously. "Shut up Ichigo. Don't you ever say that, do you understand? You said yes because you wanted to. My fucking father's opinion has nothing to do with us. I don't care about what he thinks, neither should you. If you want to be with me, great, but if you don't, don't use him as a damn excuse to chicken out. I thought you were better than that."

Ichigo shivered and looked down, ashamed by what he'd said. I do love him; I do want to be with him, why am I letting his father come between us, that's ridiculous. "I'm sorry."

Grimmjow sighed and cupped his cheek. "Idiot, don't say shit like that, please."

"M'kay." Ichigo sat up and kissed Grimmjow slowly, his hands grasping his shirt tightly. "I really am sorry, I do love you, and I do want to marry you. Please don't think otherwise."

"I won't." Grimmjow sighed and pulled Ichigo into his arms. "Ready to go back out?"

Ichigo tightened his grip on his shirt and shook his head. "Not yet."

"Ok, we'll stay in here as long as you need."

He nodded and settled in Grimmjow's arms with a sigh. "I love you."

"I love you too Ichi."

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