Runaway Horse (NC17) by nehalenia Warning: non-con, yaoi, Hollow Ichigo/Ishida
Now more about chapter 315. The scans are out, and I've read at least two interesting discussions on friends' LJs about Ichigo's character--is it consistent? What about his speech to Kenpachi at the end of the chapter? IC? Unnecessary?
I loved the whole chapter--the art was spectacular, the return of Ulquiorra gave me goosebumps and the eyeball exchanges between Ulqui and Orihime were ZOWIE! off the charts. (Does Kubo even know what sort of UST he's created here? I suspect he does. Last year's Hime slap on Valentine's day seemed like pure calculated romance to me. In the cleverest, most demented sort of Kubo way, of course).
The only criticisms I've been hearing about the chapter concern Ichigo. Why is he being so spastic? turkwriter explained it all very neatly by reminding me that Ichigo is SIXTEEN. That explains the spazzing, but what about the righteous speech towards Kenpachi?I thought that Ichigo's whole panicking to save Karakura and then rushing to fight Ulquiorra once he detected the Espada's presence was very much in character. What some people are questioning was Ichigo's taking the time to make the little speech--"You're wrong, Kenpachi." Kenpachi was wrong? What?
Of course Kenpachi wasn't wrong. Kenpachi was telling Ichigo to protect his town (something Ichigo just tried to do in the last chapter) and to protect the girl (something Ichigo is trying to do NOW). The way Ichigo phrased his "my duty is to protect my nakama" makes it sound like he made a choice whereas the fact is---the choice was already made for him because the exits from HM were sealed.
Just glory-hogging like your average shounen hero?
The line "to protect my nakama" didn't faze me at first glance. My shipper biases were to note that Ichigo has yet to say he's come specifically to rescue Inoue-san in this entire arc (contrast Mister "I'm here to rescue Inoue-san, not to fight Espada" Ishida Uryuu) and that he didn't even call her by name in this scene. But beyond that, the line didn't bother me too much. Then brightredglow pointed out in her LJ that maybe Kubo " realized how bad Ichigo looked when he didn't think of Orihime in 313 so he put this lame dialogue in."
Do ya think?
I like to think better of my Kubo in that I believe Ichigo's not thinking right away of Orihime in 313 was natural, understandable ( and deliberate on the part of the author) and that the rest of Ichigo's behavior is in character. Still, I think people are onto something. Ichigo isn't sitting right with audiences. He seems off. He seems scattered and cocky and I think Kubo wants us to see him this way.
I think we're going to see an upset of the powers that be in Ichigo's inner world soon. I hope we see HOLLOW!ICHIGO.