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Genre: Romance
Rating: T
Pairing: Yumichika x OC
Spoilers: None
Summary: You do not love a woman because she is beautiful, but she is beautiful because you love her.
Word count: 2,756
Warning: Some language. Unclear timeline.

Disclaimer: Bleach belongs to Tite Kubo. Summary is an anonymous quote. Title is a Laura Whitcomb book.
Other: Song used for this chapter belongs to Fall Out Boy.

 Chapter listing

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You only hold me up like this, cause you don’t know who I really am
Sometimes I just want to know what’s it’s like to be you.
We’re making out inside crashed cars; we’re slipping through all our memories.
I used to waste my time dreaming of being alive
(Now I only waste it dreaming of you.)

______________________________________________________________________________________

 

Ayasegawa Yumichika was bored. Out-of-his-mind, counting-ceiling-tiles-to-pass-the-time, bored. He gave a long-suffering sigh as he glanced around the classroom again.

 

Most of the human world-dwellers were dutifully taking notes. Ishida, Chad, and Orihime-chan were all paying attention like the good students they were, as the teacher droned on and on about how to properly answer critical thinking questions. He could just make out that Ichigo, from where the substitute sat several seats back and to his left, was staring moodily out the window, no doubt pissed about not having a good fight lately. Hitsugaya-taicho was staring at the teacher, but the glazed over look in his eyes, meant his mind was somewhere else. In the seat behind the white-haired captain, his lieutenant was resting her chin on her hand and was asleep, just like Ikkaku, sitting behind Yumichika.

 

And if he tilted his head to the side enough, he could just make out Arya, from where she was sitting behind Ichigo. She was staring intently at the back of the orange-haired head in front of her. Or, at least she seemed to be. If he turned farther, he could tell that her eyes were glazed over, her mind clearly elsewhere. And he could see that she kept taping her fingers on her desk, almost rhythmically. He wondered what the hell she was doing. Especially when she made some random humming noise under her breath, causing Ichigo to glance back at her, and her face to turn red.

 

Realizing he was wasting time wondering about Arya of all people, he frowned and turned back to face the teacher, still droning on about nothing.

 

The minutes slid by, time seeming to move slower than he ever remembered it moving before, until the bell rang so suddenly that it startled half the glass. Matsumoto’s elbow (followed immediately by the upper half of her body) slid off the corner of the desk, Ichigo and Ikkaku both jerked, desks making loud screeching noises on the linoleum, and Arya made another funny noise, like a mouse being stepped on.

 

Sighing to herself as she collected her things, Arya was immensely glad that it was the end of the day. Her patrol was in the middle of the night. So for the last week, she’d spent the time in between the end of school and the beginning of patrol wandering around the city. Finding some place to train away from prying eyes (both the large number of humans in this city who could see souls and her comrades) was hard to come by.

 

But the city was so full of things to see. Stores full of those ‘CDs’ her brother had given her once. The sheer amount of different kinds of music was staggering. She could (and did) spent hours just browsing through the shelves and listening to samples of the massive amounts of genres.

 

She trailed several steps behind everyone as the group walked down the hall, staring interestedly down at the tops of her shoes, waiting until they reached the front gates so she could slip away from them.

 

“Arya-san.”

 

She glanced up when the deep voice called her name and stopped suddenly when she ran into the hard chest directly in front of her. Rubbing at her nose, she glanced up. “Chado?”

 

He tilted his head to the side, gesturing without words for her to step away with him for a moment. As the pair of them walked past the group, Yumichika and Ikkaku’s surprise ripple around her.

 

The Eleventh Division pair watched with dropped jaws as Chad murmured something to her lowly, at which point they felt their eyes widen as they saw her physically hold back a squeal and hug the taller boy. She let him go almost immediately, face as red as fire, but smiling at him. He pointed vaguely down the hall, said something else they couldn’t hear handed her something and, still smiling, she walked off down the hall.

 

When Chad joined the others, there was silence as everyone just stared at each other, wondering who the hell was going to ask.

 

“What the hell was that?” Ikkaku asked.

 

In typical Chad fashion, he shrugged, said nothing, and started walking again.

 

And while everyone else gave one last glance in the direction Arya had gone before following him, Yumichika, curiosity spiked, couldn’t help but linger behind. Waiting until her couldn’t see them anymore, he turned and followed Arya’s path.

 

-

 

The halls of this school are ridiculously quiet after classes, Yumichika thought to himself, as he wondered the empty halls, looking for his wayward Division mate. And not because he cared either. If anything, this was a perfect opportunity to make fun of her for something… As soon as he figured out what that something was. Maybe it would make her blush again. It was unbecoming to turn so red, it did nothing to improve her features.

 

Giving a sigh, he planned on giving up and going to join the others when he heard something that made him pause. It sounded like… music.

 

CCuriosity killed the cat he told himself as he followed what he could now tell was piano music. He wondered who had left one of those music players running.

 

“I was stained, with a role, in a day, not my own. But as you walked into my life, you showed me what needed to be shown.”

 

He paused when he reached the door the music was coming from. The sign above the door said, “First Music Room,” and he realized with a start that it wasn’t a recording. Someone was playing. And singing, he added.

 

“And I always knew, what was right I just didn’t know that I might peel away and choose to see with such a different sight.”

 

They were good, he decided. Nothing extraordinary, but they didn’t hit any wrong notes and the melody of both the piano and the words flowed smoothly together. The voice was soft, melodic. Beautiful.

 

“And I will never see the sky the same way and I will learn to say goodbye to yesterday and I will never cease to fly and I will always reach too high cause I’ve seen, cause I’ve seen, twilight……”

 

He slid the door open as quietly as he could, trying to find out who was playing. The angle was wrong, so he slipped his head in through the crack in the door.

 

“Never cared, never wanted, never sought to see what flaunted. So on purpose, so in my face, couldn’t see beyond my own place. And-”

 

When Ikkaku suddenly yelled his name from down the hall, in his shock, Yumichika’s head shot up at the same time he tried to turn towards his friend and he wound up slamming his forehead into the doorframe, yelping in shock/pain, and accidentally slamming the door open. He dimly heard a gasp echo throughout the music room, accompanied by the sound of someone slamming down on the piano keys in surprise, before Ikkaku was yanking him to his feet and asking him what his problem was.

 

“I was simply-”

 

“Aw, who cares? Let’s go man, you know we’ve got first patrol.”

 

Meanwhile, holding a hand to her rapidly beating heart, Arya stood from the piano bench and walked soundlessly to the door, leaning out to watch them go. She couldn’t believe Ayasegawa-san had almost seen her playing! She would never live it down if he found out, and she’d never be able to prove herself. Think about it, an Eleventh Division member who sings songs and plays music. Stranger things have never been seen.

 

Yumichika gave one last glance at the music room over his shoulder, eyes narrowing when he saw a silhouette in the doorway, before Ikkaku tugged him forward again. Arya, seeing his eyes stray back, instinctively drew back from the opening, and back into the dark doorframe and the safety of the classroom, and waited until the sound of the fifth-seat’s footsteps proved he really had gone away before she quickly slipped out of the room and into the hall, leaving in the opposite direction.

 

Reaching the entrance to the school, she glanced around swiftly, and, seeing the area clear of anyone, pulled out the slip of paper she’d shoved into her pocket earlier. Chado had handed it to after telling her where the music room was. She’d been watching him strum cords on his guitar one day and, when she’d seen him having trouble with one, had helped him out. Which led to her briefly telling him that her brother had given her a guitar. Chado must have remembered her saying she enjoyed the piano more, though.

 

The paper he’d given her, he said, was from Nova-san, who had gotten it from Urahara-san to give to her. The messy handwriting was an invitation, albeit a flamboyant one, since it was from Urahara Kisuke, after all. The point of the note being that he’d trained, at least indirectly, every one of her comrades, both shinigami and human, at one point or another, and was wondering if she would like to partake in (what he called) “the joys of his training.”

 

She felt one corner of her mouth twitch in amusement as she wondered what it would have been like if Urahara had been her Captain. He seemed like an interesting person. Shaking her head, and stuffing the note back into her pocket, she gave one more glance around the quad before flash-stepping to the Shoten.

 

She was met at the door by a red-headed boy chasing a dark-haired girl with a broom. Jinta and Ururu, if she recalled correctly. She stood out in the yard, unsure of what to do, until a giant of a man (Tessai, her mind supplied), ducked out the door and picked the boy up by the back of his shirt. She stepped forward just as he was threatening Jinta to tell the owner about this.

 

“Um… excuse me…” Arya called out softly, not knowing if she should have waited before taking Urahara-san up on his offer.

 

Eyes falling on her (or, at least she thought so, it was kind of hard to tell with the dark-tinted glasses) and he dropped the boy. “Arya-dono!” He called out as he walked towards her, pulled her in front of him, and started to push her forward. “The owner is waiting for you downstairs.”

 

“Downstairs?” She echoed. “Where are the-” That was the last thing she got out, before the floor vanished from underneath her and she was suddenly falling.

 

She barely had time to give out one high-pitched screech, before she fell bridal-style into someone’s arms. Heart racing and eyes wide in shock she glanced up to see who had caught her and was met with blond hair and grey eyes hidden by a white-and-green hat.

 

“Well, look who decided to drop in,” Kisuke sing-songed, a wide grin on his face.

 

Face flushing, she scrambled out of his arms and bowed, the tips of her hair streaming the ground and sending up puffs of dust. “I am so sorry, Urahara-san! I should have been paying more attention, and I apologize-”

 

“Hey there,” he interrupted, “I told you before, there was no need to be so polite.” He set his hand on top of her bowed head, rubbing her hair affectionately, before walking past her. “Now, I offered to train you, right?”

 

“Uh, h-hai!” She chirped, straightening and spinning to follow him. Only to stop abruptly when she noticed he was now standing with a beautiful dark-skinned woman with slanted cat-eyes. “Um… Hello,” she greeted shyly.

 

The woman nodded her greeting. “You’re Kurosawa Arya, correct?” Arya nodded. “I’m Shihouin Yoruichi. Kisuke asked me to help you train.”

 

Brown eyes widened at the name. “You’re the Goddess of Flash!” She exclaimed, before slapping her hand over her mouth in mortification.

 

Yoruichi grinned at her. “That’s what they call me!” She jerked a thumb at the blond beside her and continued, “We decided you’d probably need the most help with kido and shunpu, since you’re in Zaraki’s division.”

 

Arya smiled, a little sadly, at the description. That’s pretty much what people thought of her division. The other squads taught demon magic and flash-steps. But she was a part of the Eleventh Division. And they just didn’t hold with such nonsense.

 

“Yoruichi-san is perfect to train with for shunpu!” Kisuke said, vanishing for a moment, and reappearing on an outcropping a ways away. “Then I’ll assist you with your kido!” He yelled at them through his cupped hands.

 

“Ready to begin?” Yoruichi asked, when the girl’s gaze slid from the blond the her. “Let’s see how fast you are.”

 

Arya nodded stiffly and bowed to the woman, her eyes never leaving the golden eyes of her new trainer. It was the kind of bow you give to someone when you’re not exactly sure that the person across from you won’t attack you the moment you look down.

 

“Hai sensei,” she murmured. And then they both disappeared.

________________________________________________________________________

 

Turn off the lights and turn off the shyness
Cause all of our moves made up for the silence
And oh, the way your makeup stains my pillowcase
Like I’ll never be the same.

________________________________________________________________________

 

A/N: The song she sings is called “Twilight” by Vanessa Carlton. I’m going to be using all Vanessa Carlton songs for her, because that’s what I want her voice to sound like. It’s girly and pretty, something people wouldn’t expect to come out of Arya’s mouth. And also, there’s a lot of piano music involved, and I want Arya to play the piano. Plus, it's not overly extraordinary singing. Not Christina Aguilera or Mariah Carey or something.

 

1. Yes, Chad calls her Arya-san and she calls him Chado. I write it as Chado when she speaks because some of the characters (in the Japanese version anyway) call him Chad, while some say Chado. I’m doing this for preference and because, since they’re living together, I feel they should get along well. And they’re quiet anyway, it’s not like they’ll talk a lot.

 

2. Yes, Chad has a guitar. That is canon, I did not make it up. Ichigo has one, too.

 

3. Tessai has the tendency to add ‘-dono’ to the end of people’s names. Arya is no exception.

 

4. The song I chose for this chapter, really only kind of gets across what I wanted it to. At the beginning it says they wanted to be like someone else and then the line at the end “turn off the lights and turn off the shyness” is kind of about being yourself. And I kind of feel that this is where Arya is right now. With Yumichika and Ikkaku and some of the others, she’s still that shy, quiet, lower-ranked Eleventh Division member. But now’s she’s starting to have people she can be friends with. Chad and Nova. And now Urahara and Yoruichi are the teachers she never got to have in the 11th. So yeah, that’s why I did it.