A/N: I don’t have all the in-between bits written, so – there’s a bunch of stuff that happens between Ichigo at 10 and when he crashes into a Shinigami, it’s just not down on paper yet! So I’m posting some of the later bits.
The boy’s ghost faded into light, and a black swallowtail soared for the sky.
Still crouched on the playground with his sword reversed, Ichigo took a deep breath. Let it sigh out. He’s gone.
And was it regret or relief that choked his throat? He didn’t know where he’d sent the kid with this konsou. He didn’t know what might happen to him there.
But he didn’t get eaten by a Hollow. And he didn’t become a Hollow.
Maybe helping Rukia out with this shinigami stuff wouldn’t be so bad after all.
Though now he was missing more school. Damn it, this was going to be painful.
Loki’s right, Ichigo thought reluctantly. I should just switch to doing all my courses online. Bad enough Ishida and I end up missing days whenever Fenris and Vali get torn up by the latest youkai idiot. And the idiots always headed for them first. Which sometimes gave Chad, Orihime, and Tatsuki a perfect setup, but… well. Sometimes, he and Ishida ended up in serious pain.
But seriously, if he was going to get yanked out of his own body any time a ghost needed help? Yeah. In school was not the place to be. He had way too many idiots waiting to pound him.
Still. He didn’t want to switch to all-online unless he had to. Going to school made him feel normal. Like he had a life beyond ghosts and goblins and dodging a black cat with impossible speed and a wicked sense of humor. He went to homeroom, he bowed to the teachers, he avoided Coach’s latest ploy to get him on the kendo team. He hung out with friends like Keigo and Mizuiro, who’d never seen a ghost or a youkai and never really wanted to-
But he might have a chance here he couldn’t pass up. Darn it.
“So you’ve decided?”
Standing, Ichigo sheathed the soul-sword over his shoulder. Awkward, damn it. Rukia’s hadn’t been this big. Maybe she knew why his was so lousy? “Can a konsou send on any spirit?”
“Any soul except a Hollow, yes – yeep!”
Annoying shrimp over his shoulder, Ichigo took off at a dead run.