Warnings for yaoi, mentions of rape. Ichigo/Ishida, mature situation here. If you're curious, the Ishida avatar I chose for this post is an old, old, old one of a drawing made for me by my wonderful friend Alexandria, the amazing quaedam on dA. Like so many talented people, she left Bleach fandom a while back. I'll still be trucking here until the end. :D
Sun and Rain, Love and Pain
Disclaimer: I don’t own Bleach or its characters; Kubo Tite, Shueisha and others do.
Ichigo/Ishida. NC-17 or M, yaoi, trigger warning for mentions of PTSD, rape, abuse. Thanks to nehalenia for the prompt. How would Ichigo and Ishida interact following having fought on opposite sides in a war? An unusual get-together story.
This story is part of the series that began with my ficlet “Leichtigkeit des Seins” but it can stand alone.
Eternal gratitude as always to my ideal reader, Neha, who gave me the prompt for this.
Ichigo had known where Ishida was in the family mansion but had peeked in all the windows of the first floor before finally sitting down on the ledge of the drawing room, the legs of his hakama dangling inside the house and his spiritual butt sticking through the closed window.
The inside of the mansion was way fancier than Ichigo had imagined. The curtains and the sofa cushions looked old and were embroidered with a pattern of tiny stars. Everything else looked super clean and expensive. So both their mothers had lived in this house once upon a time?
Ishida was settled in an armchair, leisurely reading a book, but to Ichigo he didn’t look right, no not at all.
Since the war, Ishida hadn’t worn his glasses at all. It was a superficial thing; people who took off their glasses always looked like their noses were longer. But they also looked a bit more vulnerable, like their expressions were easier to read. Not so with Ishida. He looked distant, his blue eyes icier, his eyebrows held just so--
“Yo!” Ichigo decided to announce his presence on the drawing room window-ledge. He knew Ishida must have felt his reiatsu for some time now, but the way Ishida had kept on reading, insisting on not acknowledging the shinigami in the window had started to creep out Ichigo. “Ishida? I’m right here. Aren’t you going to say hello?”
Slowly, in that dramatic way of his, Ishida raised his head and turned it towards the window. “Hello Kurosaki,” he said in a tone that was neither annoyed nor welcoming. “I didn’t know if you’d come here for conversation….” Ishida didn’t even close his book. “Or if you were going to stare at me for the duration of your visit to world of the Living.”
“I wasn’t staring--I--” Ichigo had been staring for about five minutes before speaking. “I wasn’t sure if you could still sense my presence.”
“Of course I can.” Ishida fingered the top corner of the page he’d been reading. Ichigo could tell he wanted to get back to the book.
“It’s examination time, isn’t it?” Ichigo was never sure of Living World schedules anymore or even what month it was--those things didn’t matter so much in Soul Society. Or maybe they mattered to captains like Toushiro, not to captains like Ichigo. “I should’ve planned a visit a little later in the spring. Everyone is about to graduate--”
“You didn’t go by your father’s house first?” Ishida closed his book now and gave Ichigo his full attention. Those blue eyes looked curious but still pretty cold. They’d looked that way for months now.
“Uh, no, I just zapped by here first.” Ichigo didn’t know how to explain himself. His visits to his family were always nice and predictable. It was always great to see old classmates, and certainly everyone had changed since the war, in good ways mostly, but Ishida--something about post-war encounters with Ishida had not been right, and Ichigo needed to understand why. Ishida seemed way older too soon. It was like he’d turned into a seventeen-year-old version of his dad, the aloof Doctor Ishida Ryuuken. But it wasn’t only that Ishida seemed older and frostier--he seemed not himself. “There was a thing with everybody at Inoue’s a few weeks back.” Ichigo went on, “and you weren’t there, so I thought I’d come by here first and see how you were doing.”
Ishida’s sharp voice sounded like the old confrontational Ishida, so Ichigo felt okay about answering the question honestly.
“Because, damn it, Ishida, you’ve been really weird ever since we fought. Is it because you lost so badly?”
“I didn’t technically lose.”
“Yes you did.”
“I didn’t lose, Kurosaki. I’m here, now, perfectly whole and alive, and you’re the one who was duped into believing I was actually conspiring against you.”
Ichigo leapt into the room, over the Ishida mansion drawing room couch, and lay on it with his head under crossed arms. “Okay, I think I get it now. You’re still sore about me thinking you’d betrayed everyone.”
“Nonsense.” Ishida got up from the armchair and began to walk to another room.
“Hey--hey! Where you going?”
“My father let the servants go today so they wouldn’t disturb my studying. No one was anticipating a shinigami on the window-ledge.” Ishida’s voice was fading as he walked. “I’ll get tea.”
Tea? That was strange. Ishida never served tea. He had always been polite and particular about niceties like capes and sandwich ingredients but …. Ichigo guessed that living in the Ishida mansion had something to do with this tea occasion--the accessibility to actual tea-stuffs and serving-ware? But maybe Ishida was trying to get away from Ichigo and his questions. Did Ishida really believe a shinigami captain could be distracted so easily?
Ichigo decided to follow Ishida into the kitchen.
“You still have a healthy appetite, I presume,” Ishida said. “If I recall correctly, shinigami who have exceptionally strong reiatsu crave food the way living souls do. Would you like little cakes? Before Ryuuken left for work this evening at the hospital, he made some custard pudding--”
“Your dad likes custard pudding?”
“No, I do.” Ishida was taking out a little bowl from the refrigerator that held a tremulous, gold and shiny dessert. “I like to eat sweets when I study.”
Ishida-sensei made sweets for his son to eat during exam-time? Everyone had changed so much since the war.
The custard pudding was tasty, the tea was like the kind Ichigo had sampled in fancy restaurants, and for a moment, Ichigo did forget to press Ishida for answers. It was nice to be in his presence as they ate and sipped tea; they didn’t speak much, but it was nice to know that Ishida and his dad were getting along.
Still, even as Ishida crossed his legs in that big armchair and looked like someone in a fashion magazine--a Japanese bachelor whose every worldly desire had already been fulfilled--there was something off. Ichigo couldn’t quite put his finger on it. It wasn’t just coolness. Ishida had always been good at pretending to be cool … but it was like Ishida was really cool now.
Was that it? Was it that Ishida had become a grown-up and that this Ishida had even less in common with the younger Ishida who Ichigo had come to know and fight? During their last confrontation, the differences between them had been as vast as sun and rain, but even so, when it was all over, more had come out from that battle than just lots of blood--a singular truth had emerged, and that truth was that, for all their differences, Ichigo and Ishida were committed with the same passion to protect family and friends and ideals.
Ichigo had always been able to read an opponent’s heart in battle, but in their last fight, Ishida had been the better reader; whatever other powers Ishida had acquired in the Shadow Realm had blown over Ichigo’s fire like rain, and there had been nothing left but the exposed pain of Ichigo’s own life, the pain of trying to be everyone for everybody, all of it washed away.
Ichigo had loved Ishida for exposing that pain.
“There are three more bowls in the refrigerator if you’re still hungry,” Ishida said.
“Yuzu will be mad with me if I’m too full to eat dinner when I go home,” Ichigo said.
Ishida picked up the teacups, saucers, and plates, and disappeared for a while again. Ichigo lay back on the couch.
Not counting this visit, Ichigo had been to the Living World four times since becoming captain--enough times to reassure himself that everyone was fine. Everyone but Ishida, that is. Ishida had always managed to say and do the right things, so what was it that was wrong? His absence at Inoue’s gathering was especially conspicuous. Ishida had always hovered around her before, but maybe … oh well, maybe he knew Inoue could take care of herself now.
It’s not that Ishida didn’t say or do especially cold things either. But he didn’t hold Ichigo’s gaze in that way like he was anticipating a lively argument. He didn’t poke fun at Ichigo’s hairstyle or how he wore his new uniform. Maybe he looked away when Ichigo looked at him? Maybe he--
“Tell me about everyone,” Ishida said, suddenly back and looking perfectly normal. Was Ichigo only imagining the sadness around his eyes where the glasses’ frames had been? “Kuchiki-san is well?”
“She’s a pain in the ass,” Ichigo said, smiling warmly at the thought of Rukia. He was about to launch into a description of her latest adorable deed at the new Shinigami Academy induction. Rukia had delivered a speech to the freshman class, and each of her “artistic visual aids” projected on the large auditorium screen had been met with wild applause-- “Hey wait, Ishida. I know what you’re doing. You’re trying to avoid talking about when we fought.”
“There’s nothing to talk about regarding our battle, Kurosaki.”
“You’re obviously still upset about it.”
“You think I should’ve trusted you the whole time. I know that you still believed in me when I was out of my mind in Hueco Mundo and thought you could bring me back and you ended up getting stabbed in the gut, so yeah, you win there. You were the better friend if you want me to say that. You win at friendship even if I win at … fighting.”
“You didn’t win our fight,” Ishida said, “and I’m not upset about your not trusting me the entire time. You had every reason to mistrust me. I wanted you to mistrust me, Kurosaki. My plan would’ve have failed had you not doubted me.”
Ichigo thought for a moment. “Oh.”
“You don’t want to be late for Yuzu’s dinner, do you?” Ishida’s face was so peculiar. He looked so mature and sober and … distant? There was probably a better way to describe it, but Ishida felt a thousand miles away and a thousand years away. Ishida had been curt before, but this distance felt wrong.
“You don’t want to hear about everyone in Soul Society?”
“I really need to study,” Ishida said. “I can hear your stories some other time.”
Ichigo sat up on the couch. He was actually considering leaving Ishida alone with his books, but one more look at him made Ichigo change his mind. Ishida was distractedly looking past Ichigo, at the doorway. There it was--Ishida looked young again, the disguise gone because Ishida was relieved that Ichigo was really leaving. Ishida looked tired and lost, not at all in charge of tea and pudding and his future and this fancy house.
“So you’re kicking me out? C’mon, Ishida. We both know you’ll ace these exams.”
“Something’s wrong with you.” Ichigo felt himself start to burn with anger over the thought that Ishida had been hiding something from him yet again. “You’ve been acting so weird ever since--what did they do to you in that Quincy place?”
Ishida’s eyes widened and his nostrils flared. Ichigo prepared himself for it, but the come-back didn’t come. Ishida’s face actually turned away; his gaze went to the book he’d much earlier placed on a chair-arm.
“Are you worried about med school?” Ichigo pressed. “Because that’s stupid. You’ve already decided what it is you want to do with your life, so go for it. The only thing left after deciding what it is you want is--”
“Not everyone reaches out and grabs life by the horns the way you do,” Ishida said. “Being an impulsive idiot isn’t, statistically, the best way to manage one’s time. I don’t know what you think you’re going to achieve by dawdling around here but I need to study and your family--”
“I’ve changed my mind. I’ll have some more pudding. And bring me some sake while you’re at it.”
“Just one cup.” Ichigo shrugged. “I learned to like it--well, some of the officers say it’s the only way to get through long meetings. Your dad probably has some good stuff. Get a bottle of some kind you think might go well with dessert.”
“Sake and pudding.” Ishida was already on his way to the kitchen. “You’re going to pass out on my couch, and I’ll never be rid of you.”
After complaining a bit that no one drinks tea then drinks sake and let alone pairs sake with dessert unless one is trying to appear exceptionally stylish and cutting-edge, “one type of cutting edge, which you, Kurosaki, have never come near,” Ishida brought out three different bottles of sake with colorful labels and told Ichigo to pick his poison. Truth be told, Ichigo had only tried sake once before, at Rangiku’s urging during a really boring captain’s meeting, and it tasted horrible, but the stuff made everyone speak more freely, so Ichigo thought that if Ishida could be persuaded to have a cup, he might open up and the strangeness and distance would be over and done with.
There had to be something troubling Ishida besides med school entrance exams and the usual concerns of accomplished, ambitious people his age--he never spoke to friends about anything, though. No one had known about the circumstances of his mother’s death until recently, and while Ichigo could understand not talking about that, there was something about Ishida that was more than just being a private person; it was like Ishida had never really learned how to open up. So, waiting for Ishida to do so when the time was right might mean waiting forever. Ichigo downed a cup of milky-colored sake and set it down on the table; he was determined to step right into Ishida’s heart, no matter what Rukia’s words of wisdom were on these matters, and muddy up the place until he found out what the hell was up with him.
“Have some,” Ichigo said. “Or haven’t you ever tried sake? This kind is really sweet. Like a soft drink.” The milky sake had tasted like candy, not at all like Rangiku’s sake.
“You sound more like your father every day,” Ishida said. “Of course I’ve had sake.”
“Really?” Ichigo was surprised. Ishida was still three years below the legal drinking age in Tokyo and not the kind of person to break rules for no reason unless he had a hell of a good reason. “Did you have some sort of weird Quincy sake when you were in the Quincy palace place?”
For a moment, Ishida’s eyes caught Ichigo’s and then looked away. Ichigo was putting two and two together. Whatever was bothering Ishida didn’t have anything to do with what was happening now in the Living World, or what had happened during their battle, but maybe it had something to do with what had happened before all this ….
“Tell me about the Ice Palace,” Ichigo said, trying his best to sound casual and knowing he was failing. “You never talked about it.”
“Nothing to tell.”
“Like hell,” Ichigo said. “That’s all important stuff. I mean, not only should Soul Society know, but even if you didn’t make a formal report … we both had Quincy mothers so I’d think you’d tell me.”
“Don’t,” said Ishida. He turned to give Ichigo a pleading look. Ichigo was a little ashamed of using their mothers as a bargaining tool, but the look was the most open one he’d seen on Ishida’s face all evening. Ishida dropped his gaze right away and his long fingers began to tear at one of the sake bottle labels. It was no idle gesture; he was clearly too uncomfortable to even think up a way to push away Ichigo’s question. That Ishida had crumpled so easily, without an argument, was a little frightening to Ichigo because that, most of all, was so unlike him.
“Ishida?” Ichigo felt hot. This always happened when he thought his friends had been mistreated or wronged, but he knew it was important to control his anger. The Quincy had been the trigger for Ishida’s being weird every time Ichigo had mentioned him. Yhwach and those Stern Ritter guys had been the worst enemies ever faced by the whole universe, and who knows what terrible things Ishida had been through in the Ice Palace. Torture? War games? Did they make him kill someone helpless? Ichigo spoke his next words with deliberate softness, even though he himself could hear the anger in them. “What did they do to you?”
Ishida had fully peeled the sake bottle label off now. He rolled the paper around his index finger. “What did they do to me? I can’t explain it to you.” His voice was deadly calm. There was anger there but it was Ishida anger, that cold kind. “You wouldn’t understand.”
“I’m not stupid,” Ichigo said. “I understand more than you think.”
“I know that,” Ishida said. “What I mean is… there are some things one can’t explain in words.”
Ichigo was afraid for a moment that maybe he was too stupid to understand what Ishida was talking about now; then he was afraid that whatever Ishida was talking about meant that the distance between them would always be like this.
“I don’t care,” Ichigo said. “You either tell me or you show me what happened there--I don’t care if you have to draw little bunnies and bears like Rukia does--but I’m not leaving until I know what the hell is going on with you and why you’ve been so fucking weird ever since--”
“Shut up, Kurosaki,” Ishida said. He picked up the nude sake bottle and re-filled Ichigo’s cup. He brought the cup to his lips and drank the contents in one gulp. Ichigo watched in amazement as Ishida repeated the process and shot back a second cup. That was some very sweet but strong stuff--Ichigo didn’t feel the effects of the alcohol at all but Ichigo was dead. Ishida was only human.
“What are you trying to prove, Ishida?”
“What do you want to know, Kurosaki?” Ishida wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, walked to the couch where Ichigo was sitting and stood over him. The distance between them seemed wider than ever, though, because of how weird Ishida was acting. “You want to know what they did to me? You really want to know?”
“They taught me how to do this.”
Ishida leaned over and, grabbing Ichigo head in his hands, kissed him fully on the mouth.
Hot, hot, waves of hot, and rivers of hot going down in sweat and going up in steam. Was Ichigo dreaming this or was his shitagi really damp at the chest and was that his reiatsu swirling around him in an invisible fire-storm?
Being too close to Ishida had always been something like this, though--confusing and angry-making and so what was this about closing a distance? Ichigo put his hands on Ishida’s shoulders and tried to push away, but as soon as his palms pressed and felt collarbones, those sad prominent collarbones, there was no pushing away. Ishida felt thinner than the last time Ichigo had touched him--in battle. Ishida felt--? Ishida felt like skin and bones. What had been wrong with him so long? Ishida felt like a dark cloud over Ichigo’s body.
It was an aggressive kiss, one flat on the lips and insistent on something--Ichigo didn’t know what until he made the mistake of opening his mouth reflexively to form a question and woah, tongue inside.
“Ehhh,” Ichigo managed to make that noise inside Ishida’s mouth, and Ishida stopped kissing him.
“What’s the matter, Kurosaki?” he asked in a hostile tone. “Never been kissed before? I thought you and Kuchiki-san…?”
Actually, no. Ichigo felt his face flush over what must have already been a flushed face at the mention of Rukia in this context. He hadn’t yet--no, Ishida Uryuu had just been Ichigo Kurosaki’s first kiss.
Ichigo tried to catch his breath. Woah, woah, he was panting. Out of shock, surely. When he managed to speak, his first word sounded like a long exhalation of air: “Whaaaaaaaat?”
“You kiss like a virgin,” Ishida Uryuu said. It was a schoolboy taunt.
“What are you doing things like--?” Ichigo was glad he was sitting down. Ishida was still hovering over him--wait, Ishida was standing up now, folding his arms, acting like he’d lobbed a smart remark at Ichigo instead of smacking him on the mouth with a kiss.
Ishida looked more like his old self now--smug, superior, in control.
They taught me to do this.
The Quincy had taught Ishida to freak out their opponents with surprise kisses? What was going on here?
“You seem unlike yourself, Kurosaki,” Ishida said. “Your face is brighter than your hair.”
“I--I-- “” Ichigo touched his own face with both hands. He was on fire. “I don’t get it. Why would the Quincy teach someone to kiss like a movie-star?”
Ishida rolled his eyes. “You’re such a dumb ass.”
“Argh!” Ichigo squeezed his eyes shut and threw his head back against the couch. “You just kissed me, Ishida. Why did you do that?”
In a flash--Ichigo never remembered the name for the Quincy flash-step--Ishida was over Ichigo again, this time actually straddling him on the couch, a knee on either side of Ichigo’s hips and his face so close Ichigo could smell custard pudding and the sweet sake.
“You don’t know why I kissed you? You were always a slow learner. Apparently, I have to repeat the lesson.” Ishida kissed Ichigo again, on the cheek this time, more tenderly. Then another kiss on the jaw.
Ishida was kissing Ichigo’s throat now, a series of soft caresses that made wet, expert use of tongue and lips, and Ichigo was lost now, all his senses vanished to lust.
“Kurosaki?” The word was a breath on his neck.
“Ishida?” Ichigo realized that his hands were holding onto Ishida’s upper arms, not to respond in any way--just to keep himself from falling onto the ceiling or something, from levitating off the couch, from--?
He’d never actually thought about it before, but it would feel wonderful to kiss Ishida. Strong, frustrating, smart Ishida. Amazing Ishida. Stupid Ishida.
That was Ishida’s hard-on pressing right against Ichigo’s. Ichigo heaved a big sigh, out of sheer disorientation over the realization, and the very act of sighing caused his back to arch, his hips to move forward, and for his dick to rub upwards against what was very obviously the shape of Ishida’s dick in blue jeans.
“What is it, Kurosaki?” Ishida breathed. Since when did his voice have the power to make the blood in Ichigo’s spirit body evaporate? Ichigo felt like he was dissolving on the spot because Ishida was talking through kisses. “Are you turned on, Kurosaki? Why is that?”
It didn’t matter why. As it was with most things as they happened to Ichigo, he didn’t see the point in thinking too much or asking why. What was most important was that he felt something very strongly; Ishida was obviously feeling it too and best of all, he was initiating the whole encounter so--
Wait. There was no way Ichigo was going to let Ishida get the upper hand on him.
Ichigo kissed Ishida on the mouth. It was easy. It was like fighting. You mirror your opponent’s moves. Ichigo pressed his tongue inside and swept past Ishida’s sharp teeth, felt the hot thick muscles that were Ishida’s tongue and began to do battle there, tasting his own pleasure more acutely somehow.
Ishida made a noise in his throat that sounded like a laugh--one of Ishida’s mocking laughs--Ichigo knew it well. Good. This was very good. Ishida was having a good time.
Kissing wasn’t getting close enough, though. The distance between Ishida and Ichigo had shrunk to almost nothing, but there was somewhere else Ichigo wanted to be right now.
He slid his hand under Ishida’s simple t-shirt. Wouldn’t you know? No sweat, just smooth skin over muscle and ribs and--shit, how skinny had he become lately? Ichigo slipped his other hand under, both hands pushed the shirt up to Ishida’s armpits, both hands went sliding down the sides of Ishida’s slender torso and stopped at his waist. Ichigo was barely aware of what his hands were doing because kissing Ishida was taking up most of his concentration. He was trying not to slobber too much, but he wanted to fully explore the inside of Ishida’s mouth. This kissing thing was amazing. It made him feel amazing. He’d learned it now, though, and was ready to move on.
In one effortless sweep, Ichigo’s hands on Ishida’s waist threw Ishida on the couch so that now Ichigo was on top. Ishida, who had been straddling Ichigo, lay with his legs apart as Ichigo’s body smashed on his crotch.
Ichigo hadn’t even broken this kiss. If this was making out, he could get really good at it. He excelled at physical activities.
Ishida’s mouth, still so delicious. Carmel pudding, hot wetness, pure lust. Ishida turned his face and ended the kissing. Ichigo’s mouth landed wide open on Ishida’s cheek.
“Kurosaki, you’re breathing like you’re tired.”
He was. This wasn’t like fighting. Ishida’s breathing was measured and in control. Ichigo’s own breathing was all over the place. He could feel his chest heaving against Ishida’s.
“So?” Ichigo pushed himself up on his palms and looked at Ishida. He looked so pretty without his glasses. “I’m not tired at all. I’m just…. ”
“What?” Ishida asked like he knew the answer. What was with this sensei act?
“Excited!” Ichigo exclaimed. “This feels like--this feels--” How could he describe it? Whatever was happening felt like something that had been waiting to happen for a long time. Ichigo had sensed something like this in the periphery of his battling Ishida before. There had always been something more that he wanted from arguing with, running after, worrying about, beating up Ishida. He wanted this. He had always wanted Ishida this way, but he hadn’t been aware of that desire.
Right now, that desire was about to burn him into cinders unless--
Ichigo stared right at Ishida for one long moment, panting hard. He wasn’t at all sure what territory he was heading into, all he knew was that he wanted to do more than kiss.
Another lightning fast motion and Ichigo had pulled Ishida's t-shirt off over his head.
Ishida was skinny, all right, but those years of archery had built incredible muscles in his upper body. That Quincy scar in the center of his chest would be there forever; it was a dark pink wound in the shape of a star and it looked hard-core. Beautiful, each line as precise as if painted there, an emblem of Ishida’s durability and power.
Ichigo threw himself on Ishida chest and started kissing that scar. The lines that looked painted were actually a hard bumpy ridge.
Not to be outdone, Ishida had somehow managed to un-do the sash of Ichigo’s hakama. Ichigo felt the straps fall and the waist of his hakama slacken. How had Ishida done that? Those hakama-himo were, under the best of circumstances, the hell to tie and un-tie, and Ishida had managed to loosen both knots with Ichigo’s body pressing on top of him. But then again, Ishida had always had this mastery of …. clothes.
“Don’t mess up my father’s couch,” Ishida said, even as Ichigo had started to suck on one of his nipples.
Ichigo didn’t know what Ishida meant by “mess up”--this really wasn’t a destructive activity like fighting. It wasn’t like the couch was going to be exploded by a kidou blast or cut in half by Zangetsu or--oh!
Ishida was fine with it! Ishida wanted Ichigo to go as far as jizzing on him.
Well, Ichigo would be damned if he was going to be the first to come! He would make Ishida jizz first!
Ziiiiiip! Ichigo got the first part of taking Ishida’s pants off quickly but that’s only because no one can fumble with a zipper; with his further intentions, he was less nimble. He wanted to pull Ishida’s jeans off, but Ishida wasn’t exactly cooperative, and the jeans were tight, so Ichigo felt himself tugging helplessly at belt-straps (fortunately there had been no belt) and making no progress.
Whatever he was doing wasn’t miserable, though, because Ishida was still into it all and brushing his hands through Ichigo’s hair as Ichigo tugged at the jeans.
Ichigo gave up the jeans struggle and slipped his hand into the open fly. Oh man, it was hot there--the soft hair, the rock-hard dick, the blood-heat of a human body. Ichigo forgot about the nipples which had tasted like crazy good and suddenly wanted to put his face against Ishida’s crotch and taste what was there.
He didn’t, though. He touched the smooth long dick, ran the tips of his fingers up and down the length of it, and thought about kissing it.
There was a mmm sound from Ishida. A very soft reverberating hum of approval. It sounded less like Ishida’s bitchy in-control self, and Ichigo liked it very much. He wondered what other sounds he could get Ishida to make. He’d made Ishida oomph in pain in battle before--
What did they do to you?
The realization washed over Ichigo like a cold shower. No, no. The Ice Palace. The kissing. What Ishida had said about “They taught me to do this.”
They did to Ishida what Ichigo was doing now.
“Oh my god, Ishida.”
Ichigo stopped his length-wise stroking of Ishida’s dick and laid his hand flat over it--as if to hide it or protect it.
“What’s the matter?” Ishida’s voice sounded un-sensei-like now. It sounded young and vulnerable.
“It just hit me,” Ichigo said. He was so stupid. He was so ashamed. “Why didn’t you stop me? What they did to you--what they did…..” He thought the word rape but could not bring himself to say it. The word alone, devoid of any actual imagery, was enough to make Ichigo feel like darkness had fallen over the room and the walls had turned to sheets of rain.
Ishida raised himself up on his elbows and was looking at Ichigo now--eyes full of understanding. “I see” Ishida was breathing hard too now. His dick was still rock-hard under Ichigo’s hand although Ichigo’s own erection had been put down by the rain. “So you finally stopped to think for a moment, Kurosaki,” Ishida went on in a melancholy voice. He didn’t sound chiding. “I was wondering if you would stop to think.”
“Ishida, I’m …. I’m so sorry.” Ichigo heard his voice crack.
“Don’t be. This is different.”
“How? How is it different? It’s just like you said. You said that there are some things a person can’t describe in words. You … oh my god, Ishida, oh my god, oh my god.” There was a throbbing under one of Ichigo’s eyes, and Ichigo covered it with his free hand. The other hand he kept firmly pressed over Ishida’s crotch. There was a throbbing there too. “They did this to you too, didn’t they? They made it feel good, and it was wrong. You couldn’t help but feel good.”
“No, it’s not like that at all.” Ishida shifted. Ichigo tried to keep him from going away. Whatever distance had been bridged between them, Ichigo didn’t want to lose that now--so his hand held against Ishida’s crotch as if he could keep him there that way. “Kurosaki, it’s all right.” Ishida’s voice was a little hoarse. “I was the one who was wrong. I wanted to prove a point, but I didn’t think you’d… I didn’t think that you’d….”
Ishida at a loss for words was a strange sight. He was pink and breathless, never so young looking. What had happened to his glasses anyway? Ichigo had wondered if because of Ishida’s last Quincy power-up, Ishida’s senses were so sharp that he didn’t need glasses anymore. Or were Ishida’s senses dulled now? Had experience and war jaded him? Ichigo didn’t know anything, really. That’s why he had been staring at him for so long at the window before announcing his own presence. Ishida, the once snooty boy, the once deadly final form Quincy Angel, had been sitting reading looking like one of those vaguely dissatisfied ordinary mortals, a grown-up comfortably numb to the wonders he’d seen in his younger days.
The Ishida here and now was a startled one.
“You didn’t think I’d kiss you back?” Ichigo asked. “Did you really think I was going to let you be the one in control of everything?”
Ishida sighed. “You’re getting better at thinking.”
“Who?” Ichigo wanted to know. “Who did these things to you?”
“It doesn’t matter, Kurosaki. They’re dead now anyway. You don’t have to avenge me.”
The moment was still charged with sex. Ichigo felt that his arousal wasn’t entirely dead. Anger had stirred it. Ichigo felt very protective of Ishida. If he didn’t want to fuck Ishida right now exactly, he wanted to hit something, kick something. “Tell me who,” he insisted.
“The king,” said Ishida in a quieter voice. Even though the house was empty, it was as if he didn’t want anyone else to hear. “The king and …”
Ichigo’s chest was in cold shock. The king of the Quincy. There was no wretchedness that Ichigo could imagine that man incapable of, but Haschwalth? Haschwalth had wanted to fight for the salvation of the world, not the destruction of it--he had not been that bad of a guy.
“I don’t want to talk about it,” Ishida said, and somehow Ichigo knew that the subject was about to be closed, probably forever. “But I want you to know that it wasn’t the same with Haschwalth. The Quincy army taught him to do these things. First it was him, then it was him and the king together, and then ….” Ishida drifted off as if remembering something. “It doesn’t matter.”
Ichigo was horrified. Together. He wanted to know more, but the idea of Ishida involved in such goings-on was not only sickening, it was also arousing. How many times had it happened? What sort of things had happened--?
“I’m sorry, Ishida,” Ichigo said again. He could not imagine the pain of having to live with whatever happened. That explained a lot about why Ishida had been acting so weird. People who feel pain and need to pretend they’re fine need to stay away from friends. Friends have this way of bugging you until your true self emerges. Now Ishida’s pain was partly Ichigo’s, but he still knew nothing specific of what it was Ishida had endured. Sex with the king in the Quincy army--for what purpose? Did they hurt Ishida? Did they try to humiliate him, did they--?
“It was supposed to confer Quincy powers on me,” Ishida said, as if reading Ichigo’s mind. “So they didn’t consider themselves evil or what they did coercion. But these things are just facts of war, Kurosaki. I used them as much as they used me. I think the point I was trying to make after I threw back that sake was that our bodies react in ways we don’t expect them to--and--and--”
He’d liked it.
“Ishida, even if you liked it, it was still wrong. You didn’t ask for it.”
Ishida gave Ichigo a look like he didn’t agree, but Ichigo didn’t press. There was never winning a battle of words with Ishida. Why did everything have to be a battle? For once, couldn’t he and Ishida have a moment where they were close and they weren’t fighting?
Ichigo’s hand was still resting on Ishida’s erection. “Why didn’t you stop me?” His voice was trying not to cry, even though his eyes were dry. “Even when I was acting like an idiot, you know I would’ve stopped. I’m not like them. I would’ve stopped, Ishida.”
“That’s why this is different,” Ishida said. “There’s no reason for you to be sorry. I didn’t want you to stop.”
Ishida put his hand on Ichigo’s head, his fingers burying themselves in his wild hair, and Ichigo felt forgiven. He knew that Ishida was saying there was nothing to be forgiven for, but Ichigo needed to feel forgiven. He had rushed in again without stopping to consider what Ishida might really be trying to tell him, without once thinking about the big-ass clue “They taught me how to do this” might really mean. Ichigo wasn’t a rapist, no, but he had grown up enough to be worthy of a captain’s rank in the Gotei 13; he should have stopped to think.
“What I want you to stop is looking so miserable,” Ishida said. Both his hands were combing through Ichigo’s hair now. Wave after wave of excitement was passing over Ichigo’s soul as Ishida’s fingers moved through the hair. “My father is going to be home in an hour, so we don’t have much time.”
Ishida still wanted to--?
Ichigo bowed his head and kissed Ishida’s belly out of gratitude. Not gratitude for the sex, because that wasn’t important, no, it really wasn’t--Ichigo was thankful for the closeness right now. That Ishida had taken the initiative in lessening the distance, that after whatever Ishida had been though, Ishida still trusted Ichigo.
When Ichigo and Ishida’s mouths met this time, Ichigo wasn’t sure who had kissed who first. All he knew was that the painful distance was gone, whatever stupid wrongness about Ishida that had been there since the war was going to go away too, and yes, he and Ishida were going to be closer.
Even closer, as close as it gets.
Written while listening to David Bowie and David Gilmour live at Royal Albert Hall, 2007, “Comfortably Numb”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8HnjsULFHmM Yes, I went to a Pink Floyd concert in my lost youth. All lost boys know this song in the womb.
This piece will be continued in another one-shot, a PWP with characterization, but the story itself ended here so please don’t hate me for ending it without more sex. ~ deb, August 14, 2013.