Disclaimers, etc.: See chapter one and/or Disclaimers Page.
This chapter written on 08/14/2022
Opening Theme: Kuchibiru Kara Romantica by AAA
Ending Theme: Aitai Riyuu by AAA
Across the Dimensions
Fifth Division in the Red
Chapter Eleven: Getting Back to the Question
SOUL SOCIETY – FIFTH DIVSISION
“Nii-sama? Shouldn’t we be going?”
Rukia Kuchiki tried to persuade her brother to leave the fifth division already.
She couldn’t believe it, but her older brother finally moved on from his former wife. Yet he picked the wrong person to start getting possessive over.
Sajin stood between Byakuya and Shinjiro. He stared Byakuya down and threatened to fight him if he didn’t stay out of Shinjiro’s business.
Nanao and Renji left to spread the word they may have invaders and that the divisions should stand by to receive some specialized fifth division members to help keep watch. Nanao promised Momo to inform her taicho of the contest as well. She suggested Momo should announce the contest to the others in person. Renji feared the wrath of his taicho to spread the word himself.
Momo left Shinjiro to divide up alpha division’s assignments while she gathered the members of delta and theta divisions. Once she divided them into shifts, she returned to the annoying stalemate courtesy of one noble Kuchiki clan member.
“Delta and theta are ready,” she said to Shinjiro. “Now, let’s go ahead with the plan.”
“You’re kidding me. Hime-san doesn’t know about any of this and you’re going ahead?” Byakuya objected.
“Having second thoughts, Kuchiki?” Shinjiro asked. “Certain you’re going to lose now?”
“I won’t lose to you,” he vowed.
“Why?” Shinjiro asked. “Because you got ahead once – thanks to Kurotsuchi?”
“Certainly not,” Rukia insisted. “Say it’s not true, nii-sama. You can’t possibly be pleased that happened!”
“You think little eleventh division scum such as you are good enough for her?”
“You think your attitude makes you good enough?” Shinjiro shot back.
“Why you little -.”
Byakuya drew his zanpakuto.
SOUL SOCIETY – FOURTH DIVISION
Kenpachi couldn’t believe what Shirahime said. Kuchiki was still keeping up appearances around her?
“You mean to tell me Kuchiki still can’t get over it? He hasn’t changed?” Kenpachi asked.
“Nope,” Shirahime answered.
“At all?” Retsu asked.
“No reason why it should,” Shirahime said. “Appearances are important to him. He doesn’t really like me. I wish he’d just be more honest about it.” Like a certain other taicho she knew . . . .
“Maybe he likes you too much,” Kenpachi suggested.
“And acts like he doesn’t like you to hide it,” Retsu added.
“That was not his fault,” she said.
The others, except Kosetsu, looked at the three of them and tried to read what they did not say.
“Did he take you out on a date? And then deny it?” Rangiku asked.
“Really, don’t ask,” Shirahime insisted. “All you need to know is he didn’t want to get involved.”
“Then wouldn’t you just turn him down, mom?” Yachiru asked.
“Kurotsuchi poisoned me,” Shirahime answered. “Poisoned us. We were not ourselves. I think he surely thought I was someone else.”
“Are you saying -?” Rangiku began.
“Nothing that needs to be repeated. And Yachiru, Daichi, do not tell your grandparents. They don’t need to try and guess what I mean.”
“But mom,” Daichi interrupted, “Kurotsuchi really likes you. Why would he do that?”
“Because he’d do anything for his research.”
“But he and Unohana helped save me and you.”
“And he keeps looking at you like Yumi does when no one’s looking,” Yachiru added. “Oh, I know, does he want to have a baby with you, mom?”
“You’re kidding,” Kenpachi said.
“No way,” Rangiku agreed.
Shirahime stood speechless with her mouth open for a moment.
Kenpachi looked at her and tried to push his thoughts away. Now was not the time.
Retsu caught the expression and had to push her own thoughts away. Now was not the time. She was a medical professional. Now was the time to think about that. Not about those other thoughts.
“Perhaps now is a good time for another medical exam,” Unohana suggested before stopping herself.
Kenpachi looked at her, now realizing she read exactly what he had been thinking moments ago.
“There are a lot of people watching,” Kenpachi said.
Retsu had many years to practice not blushing.
“Mom, are you going to have a baby already? Yay! Daichi, we’re getting a brother and sister. We should go tell Obaa-san and Jii-san!”
“Kosetsu,” Shirahime looked to the boy. “Do you need me to explain it to you, too? Please tell me I at least won’t have to have that talk with you.”
“What talk, mom?” Yachiru asked.
“Nothing, Yachiru. Nothing at all.”
“Oh, big brother Kosetsu knows about our new brother and sister! You were keeping it a secret, mom?” Yachiru asked.
“So secret apparently I don’t know about it,” Shirahime said. “Look, everyone. I really think I should be getting back. Kuchiki really shouldn’t be left alone with my division. Like ever. What happened with Kuchiki was a long while ago. Before Momo woke up. At least to me that sounds like a long time. I got over it – kind of – but Byakuya has not. And that is okay. He was humiliated. I embarrassed him.”
“You’re kidding. Blaming yourself again?” Zaraki asked. “That ass still won’t drop it? The mad scientist is to blame, not you.”
“Still, I would feel better to see everyone. Somehow, I get the feeling something bad has already come my way. I can’t help but think Byakuya is involved.”
“I’m not sure you’d like to know what’s going on,” Retsu said.
The group looked down the hall to see Yoruichi and Soi Fon rushing towards them.
Yoruichi nearly flew into the room, ready to pick her daughter up.
Retsu firmly grasped her arm.
“It’s okay, mom. Really. Just a bit dizzy and overworked. Nothing to concern yourself with.”
Soi Fon narrowed her eyes at her.
Yoruichi looked to Yachiru and Daichi.
“Perhaps we should talk alone,” Yoruichi suggested.
“No need. Everything is fine. No need to worry. Though I feel the urgent need to check on my division. I have the feeling Kuchiki – or someone – is about to do something stupid.”
“I’ll go check, sister,” Soi Fon said. “I’ll punish Kuchiki if he’s done something stupid. Or I might just punish him anyway. I bet he’s done something you don’t like.”
“You don’t know the half of it,” Zaraki said.
“No, but I’d like to,” Rangiku interjected.
“Aijou, are you pregnant?” Yoruichi gasped as she looked her over. “That’s what made you ill? I’ll come with you, Soi Fon. Let’s kill him.”
“Good idea,” Soi Fon agreed.
“Yoruichi-ma, please. I don’t know where you got that idea -.”
“You mean you and Byakuya -.” Rangiku cut in.
“There is where I get the idea,” Yoruichi said.
“Does this mean we get a little brother or sister? You were just trying to hide it from us?” Yachiru asked. “I was hoping you’d have one with Kenny, Yumi, or Shiro, but still, yay! New brother and sister.”
“No, no it does not, Yachiru,” Shirahime answered quickly.
“But why?” Yachiru asked. “Have I done something wrong? Daichi wants a little brother or sister, too. It’s not just me.”
Shirahime stroked Yachiru’s hair. “That’s not how it works. I’m not pregnant. I will explain it to you later sometime.”
“I wanted brothers and sisters, and Daichi just showed up. You skipped being pregnant. So, skip again, mom. Won’t you like to have more of us?”
Shirahime kissed Yachiru on the forehead.
“My little girl, it would be nice to have more. But it’s my fault I can’t right now. I’m too -.”
“She needs to get better,” Retsu volunteered. “Once that happens, I’m sure you will have all the brothers and sisters you want.”
“All of them?” Yachiru nearly jumped up and down.
“How many is all of them?” Rangiku asked to herself. Oh, well, the secretly most popular man in Soul Society was going to be tied up with lots and lots of children. Some women had all the luck. Then again, who could compete against an actual princess? And a god, when she reminded herself of the fact.
“We’ve got to get mom better then,” Daichi said to Yachiru, cutting off Ragiku’s mental wanderings.
“Daichi, please remind me to have your grandfather have a talk with you,” Shirahime said.
“What kind of talk?”
“How people get pregnant. Or in general, how people have babies.”
Soi Fon stilled her laughter. She could imagine Kisuke Urahara freaking out over the upcoming task.
“I could -,” Zaraki volunteered.
“I think he might feel weird,” Shirahime turned him down.
“I could -,” Retsu offered.
“I think it may be best a man explains this to him. For physical reasons.” Shirahime hoped she didn’t have to say more right now.
“I’m too young to be a great-grandmother,” Yoruichi said.
“But how would I have a baby?” Daichi asked. “Can I get pregnant?”
“Your grandfather will explain,” Shirahime said.