Bridge ficbit – Jibaku III

Rukia had always seen konsou from the viewpoint of a shinigami. From knowing what would happen next, and hoping somehow it would still come out right for a lost soul.

Two years. If Ichigo’s heard him, watched him…. “You saw his chain of fate pulling away.”

“Told you. I see ghosts, Rukia. Have for as long as I can remember.” Ichigo shrugged, looking away. “I try to help them figure out what they need to do to pass on. And… I figure out where all the bound ghosts are. So if they don’t pass on-” He ducked his head, as if falling dust were the most interesting sight ever. “I couldn’t fight that guy at the clinic. You saw.”

Rukia swallowed. “You knew this soul was going to Hollow.”

“Eventually. Yeah.” Ichigo still wouldn’t look at her. “Kind of like watching a car wreck.” Another, formless shrug. “Drives you a little bit crazy.”

I never thought about it.

She knew how souls suffered in Rukongai. What it took to fight your way out of the slums, struggle through the Academy, and try to exist in a noble family where her so-called brother wouldn’t even look at her.

But the living also suffer.

She’d trained at the Academy to protect souls from Hollows. To do something about the monsters that had stolen Kaien and Miyako from her life. Yet so long as she had her zanpakutou and kidou, she could fight.

Ichigo could only watch souls crumble.

She straightened, violet eyes meeting brown. “Are there other earthbound souls in Karakura?”

“I know a few.” His scowl softened. “Rukia?”

She raised a curious brow.

“Thanks.”


Another day, another dozen emergencies. Loki downed a cup of strong tea, stalking over to the window of the tiny staff lounge in Karakura General for some bracing sunlight. Ordinarily he could take back-to-back shifts interning under Ryuuken and assisting at Isshin’s clinic; jotunn stamina outlasted the merely human any day of the week. But after that fiasco last night, with Ichigo, a Hollow, and a shinigami all tangled up in blood before he could get home and stop them-

Sunlight glinted off steel, laced with the aura of Ichigo’s power.

But Ichigo’s at school…. Oh. My. Gods.

Grinning like a wolf cub with his first kill, a black-robed Ichigo waved at him from the roof of the office building opposite the hospital. Gave him a thumbs-up, and drew runes on air with a blue flicker of power.

“Got the idiot stuck to Akasuki Hospital. Going to try to hit a few more before I get back to school. Talk later!”

Walking in behind Loki, Ryuuken choked. “Is that-?”

“It is,” Loki said dryly, absently charging a levin-bolt between his fingers as Ichigo picked up a slight, dark-haired form. The boy was fifteen; he was mortal, mostly….

And he was currently running around without his body. Of course.

I need to put a location spell on his soul, not just his body. Wonderful.

“And that girl!” Ryuuken’s eyes narrowed, icy chips behind glass, as Ichigo dashed away.

“The shinigami Urahara swore he’d take care of. Yes.” Loki’s own eyes narrowed. Gray skirt, white blouse, red tie – he knew that uniform. “Since when did take care of mean put in Ichigo’s school?

Cursing under his breath, Ryuuken picked up the phone.

“Hello, my valued customer!”

“Urahara,” Loki and Ryuuken growled as one.

“Um. I can explain?”

“Ichigo is running around Karakura dressed as a shinigami,” Loki said dryly.

“You put a shinigami in my Quincy son’s classroom,” Ryuuken bit out.

“…It seemed like a good idea at the time?”

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45 thoughts on “Bridge ficbit – Jibaku III

  1. Noticed Loki’s comment about Jotun stamina. Sounds like he’s in a much better mental space. Also, did Ryuken and Loki bond over crazy shinigami antics, because it sounds as though they’re on civil, if not passingly friendly, terms with each other?

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      1. > Ryuuken: …I shouldn’t. I know I shouldn’t. But tell me more….>
        Isshin: A tingle down my spine, hair raising on the back of my neck. Could it be? It is!
        -He races over to Masaki’s picture-
        Isshin:Oh dearest Masaki, the moment we worked for so long has finally come to pass. Ryuuken is finally loosening up. Or he’s just cracked and gone insane.

        I can’t really see Isshin being upset at Ryuuken using Loki’s advice to take pot-shots at him etc.

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  2. Oi . . . .

    And Loki, odds were good that Ichigo would have become a Shinigami eventually. There was going to be a time when he was helping someone that Zangetsu would have gotten through to Ichigo.

    Yes, there is a possibly that it would not happen until after Ichigo died but given how powerful he is, even untrained, and considering his magical affinity, it’s not very likely.

    Granted Rukia being involved in this tangle complicates things. A lot. Not least of which is that eventually the Soul Society is going to get curious (and even if she had healed up quickly and gone right back, there still might be questions asked about Karakura) and leap to exactly the wrong conclusions. Granted, it is an understandable mistake given what information they will have but still . . .

    And I wonder how gritted Uryuu’s teeth have been since Rukia showed up at the school? Because you can’t blame him and Ryuuken for being distrustful of Shinigami. They did, after all, try to wipe them out.

    And why do I sense the delicate and reasonable hand of the Central 46 involved in that? Maybe because their solution to everything that doesn’t go their way seems to be kill whatever or whoever they deem responsible.

    And I’d like to think that as they have done with other less than moral decisions made by the Central 46, if some Captains did everything in their power to avoid actually carrying out their orders. They conveniently lost people they were “pursing”, somehow missed their hiding places, or failed to identity Quincy and claim that there were “only normal humans here”, accidentally on purpose messing up other people’s attempts to locate and kill Quincy, etc. Maybe actually spiriting people away when they could manage it.

    It wasn’t much but it was enough for people like Ryuuken and Uryuu not be horribly inbred or something.

    And given that they know Urahara already did something he thought were a good idea, perhaps someone should be checking Rukia for any other brilliant ideas . . .

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    1. The other thing we need to wonder about is the relation between Quincy;s and souls here.

      Because I can’t remember if the ‘Quincy’s destroy souls with their powers and destablize the balance’ explanation was actually true in Bleach or BS.
      But here they are more specialized human mages and the ability to destroy a soul is not exactly easy.

      My guess is that the 46 or some other faction didn’t like the Quincy’s horning in on thier ‘sacred duty’ and came up with an excuse for wiping them out. And since the majority of the Shinigami wouldn’t really have any connections to the living world (and Quincy/Shinigami relations were probably poor in general) ,there wouldn’t be too many people going against the order.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. *nods*
        I agreed that there probably weren’t many who went against orders but I do think there should be at least a few across the organization.

        Because I want there to be decent people in the Gotei 13. And decent people usually balk at committing genocide. Kinda of like how some Germans and even some members of Nazi organizations balked and did what they could to subvert their orders.

        And I don’t want to have put every character old enough to have participated in said genocide on my needs-to-be-die-in-a-fire list. Because characters like Ukitake, Kyouraku, and Unohana are old enough to be on that list and I’d like to to able to keep liking them.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. >In this AU, basic Quincies can, indeed, destroy souls. (And so far as we know that was true in canon.) Uryuu’s done a lot of work to find out a way to make it so he doesn’t. It was not easy! >
        Which makes it all the more interesting. The Quincy’s abilities which include energy arrows that blow great gaping chunks of your soul apart are hereditary. Sure you need training to use it right but the ability faithfully passes on from parent to child.

        So you have to ask yourself, what in the heck did their ancestors fight against (for presumably generations) that resulted in this sort of ability forming and being ingrained into the bloodline to the point where even a Quincy with the most basic of training can shatter souls?

        Because that sort of capability doesn’t develop in a vacuum.

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      3. *G* If I point out that Loki – one of the most powerful sorcerers in Marvel canon – is Jotunn, and that Quincies may have some jotunn ancestry…. Well. Jotenheim might be a very interesting place. 😉

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      4. I remember seeing somewhere that the souls of things quincy killed like hollows weren’t actually being destroyed but Yhwach was nomming them instead. However that might be fanon.

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    2. Eventually, yes. Loki was hoping Ichigo’d be a lot older than 15, though!

      Things are still going to be tangled with Rukia and co. In part because Urahara… isn’t going to have quite the same options this time around. I haven’t figured out exactly what he’s decided to do about that, but I suspect it gets sticky.

      From what we know of canon, Yamamoto-Genryuusai was directly involved in the whole “wipe out the Quincy” mess. Ouch.

      As for what other captains might have done about that – difficult to say. Think about the fact that canon, Quincies fire soul-destroying arrows. Think about that vs. Shinigami. I can see that any conflict – when Shinigami know their comrades lost in action are not just killed but destroyed – would become very nasty, very quickly.

      (Ichigo, Ishida, and Loki have done a lot of work to make Ishida’s arrows not utter destruction. This may be one of the biggest changes from canon!)

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      1. Yeah, I can see how that would get very nasty very quickly.

        But . . . did anyone ever explain that to the Quincy or did the Shinigami just tell them not to it because “I said so!” and the Quincy rather understandable when “ah . . . no!”

        Because if they didn’t explain the first couple of times they met, then the Quincy would be right to suspect that explanation as a darned dirty lie?

        Were attempts at being reasonable adults hindered by forces on both sides of the conflict being unreasonable jerks?

        Maybe an outside force purposely sabotaging attempts to work things out because he/she/it/they want the Shinigami and the Quincy to remain mortal enemies? Like say Odin who hates both Jotunn (whom the Quincy are descendant from) and Shinigami. (Because as tempting as it is, we can’t blame Aizen for everything messed up about the Soul Society, just a lot of it).

        Maybe few past Quincies who did believe the soul-destroying bit and were rightly horrified when it was further pointed out that destroying all of the souls the Hollow consumed, including the Quincy’s own loved ones, but were killed before they could either work out how to change their arrows OR were killed before they could pass said knowledge on.

        The remaining Quincy either not knowing the soul-bit or not believing it since it came from people killing them in droves, never bothered to try to change their techniques . .

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Okay, your Bunnies are getting derelict in their duties to your Betas.

    *glares at Bunnies* This was the first I’ve seen of that scene in the hospital.

    (*wants more, yes, wants much more, my precious….*)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Kenpachi as well. I like kenny, think of him as a samurai equivalent of a drill sarge. I don’t know what he does to the enemy, but he scares the s–t out of me deal.

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  5. >>Hmm; Bleach canon, the Quincies did know they were destroying souls. They were looking at it from the POV of, these monsters are eating us, and we have to stop them somehow.>>

    Valid concern but the fact that apparently no one before Uryuu seems to have bothered to even attempt to change their arrows in-between Hollow attacks does not exactly speak well of them. If they tried and failed, that would be one thing. But to not try at all when you aren’t fighting for your life . . .

    And that still doesn’t eliminate the possibility that somebodies or somebodies was making an already bad and tense situation worse for their own purposes.

    Maybe I’m grasping at straws here but even with the soul-destroying wrecking the balance and the final destruction of fallen comrades making the Shinigami less reasonable than they might otherwise be, but it seemed like the whole thing escalated to genocide very quickly.

    And, presumably, the Quincies had been around for a while before Shinigami decided to wipe them out – what changed?

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    1. “What happened” is a good question. But Uryuu getting his arrows to behave differently wasn’t easy, trust me! Even with a sorcerer of Loki’s level poking the problem.

      And yes, it did escalate quickly. I’d have to look up exactly what Bleach canon said was happening, but apparently there were several people involved in the meddling back then.

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      1. >>But Uryuu getting his arrows to behave differently wasn’t easy, trust me! Even with a sorcerer of Loki’s level poking the problem.>>

        *nods* Understandable. And it might be part of their righteous indignation about the whole complicated mess was that some of them were trying to change it. They failed but at least they tried.

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      2. And apparently the whole thing happened 200 years before canon. (Which is before Kenpachi showed up, I think before Toushirou showed up, before Urahara became a captain – he was 3rd seat of 2nd, under Yoruichi, until 110 years BCanon – before Byakuya got rank….)

        Hm. Given where Mayuri was 110 years BCanon, it’s possible that he was involved (I don’t know exactly what he did to get sentenced to where he was – or at least I don’t remember if it was mentioned or not). And Yamamoto-Genryuusai was definitely involved.

        Given the reactions during the Rescue Rukia arc… I would say that Eighth, Thirteenth, and probably Fourth were Not Involved. That Twelfth likely was, but we don’t know about Mayuri (considering that he became Urahara’s vice-captain 110 BC – yes, that was a remarkable lack of common sense even for Urahara). That the current ranks in Tenth weren’t involved, and given Isshin’s relationship with Ryuuken, likely Tenth wasn’t involved at all.

        Anyway. My 2 cents poked in.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. *Nod* So far as we know, at least. We’re not sure how Isshin and Ryuuken met in canon – but my bunnies love the fanon that they met in med school, and Isshin’s been bedeviling the guy ever since.

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  6. We do know how and when Isshin and Ryuuken met in canon. They met when Isshin went to go investigate white killing shinigami and he infested Masaki.

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      1. Wait, you haven’t read that section in the manga? I think it is also where Masaki and Isshin met. No wonder you had that impression of it.

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      2. The manga I have only up to partway through the Arrancar arc. I got bounced onto other fandoms (SAO, Ubel Blatt, Log Horizon to name just a few) and, well, only so much cash for books at any one time. *Rueful G* ATM I’m not even caught up to all of Magi out yet, due to needing to get some books for research instead. So… yeah.

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  7. I think Mayuri should get konso’d. He is one of the best arguments against Soul Society imo. He might be better in his next incarnation, but his r63(?) clone is the only good thing about him. I think Ol’ Man Genocide went senile just before appointing him captain. Or brainwashed.

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    1. Oh, and I’m not actually sure how much say Yamamoto-Genryuusai has over the appointment of captains (and vice-captains – I doubt he has any say over the latter, all things considered). Mayuri was Urahara’s vice-captain (like I said, a remarkable lack of common sense even for Urahara), and had bankai. I don’t know if Yama-jii (to quote Shunsui) could have prevented Mayuri from becoming captain of Twelfth after Urahara was exiled under those conditions.

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  8. > I need to put a location spell on his soul, not just his body. Wonderful.

    Loki just sounds SO DONE in my head when reading this. Here’s my limit, here’s you a mile behind it. /Why?/

    I’d almost feel sorry for Urahara if he didn’t deserve absolutely everything coming to him from this.

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