3: For the Love of Taicho

Disclaimers, etc.: See chapter one and/or Disclaimers Page.
Opening Theme: Diamond by Alan
Ending Theme: With You by AAA


Bleach: Cross
Across the Dimensions
Shiro Shattered
By Eugena

Chapter Three: For the Love of Taicho



Third Seat Takeya returned to his division.  He had a few things to pick up before he could assist Kurotsuchi Taicho.  He found Hinamori busy ordering practice routines for the division.

“Again!” shouted Hinamori to the members in front of her.  In pairs, the members spared unarmed.  One rolled out of the way of his partner’s foot stomping down upon him.  Another finally got his partner in a choke hold.  Each member looked at his partner as if he were Aizen or Ichimaru.

He walked up next to Hinamori.  “Break!” he ordered.

“What are you doing?” Hinamori hissed at him.

“Working them to death will not bring our taicho back.”

“Thorne Taicho will come back to me.  I won’t give up on her.”

Several of the division members stopped to watch the exchange.

“Dismissed,” Takeya said to them.

The members left, leaving Hinamori and Takeya alone.

“Where have you been?” Momo demanded.

“Finding out about Sou Taicho’s plans.  I’ll tell you later.  But right now, I have to gather some things and see Kurotsuchi Taicho.  He needs me help for something for taicho.”  He touched her face.

Then Momo saw it.

“Daichi, have you been crying?”

“Don’t worry about it.”

“Then taicho -.”

“No, no.   Just someone reminding me I’m not really her son, that’s all.”

“Daichi . . . .”

She leaned in and kissed him on his cheek. He gasped then turned and kissed her on the lips.

“I have to go,” he said quickly.  “Kurotsuchi Taicho might be able to help her.”

He kissed her again quickly, ignoring the question of how much trouble he’d be getting in.

“Thorne Taicho is coming back to all of us.  And for all of us.  Not just you.”

“I know,” she said, “but I watched Aizen Taicho betray everyone, and I won’t watch Thorne Taicho die.”

Takeya wanted to comfort her further, but he knew that he was not the one she needed.  “Go see her,” he said.  “See her for all of us.”



The room seemed to move and spin, but Hitsugaya ignored every screaming protest from parts of his body.  He didn’t remember if he had eaten at all, but he had no thought for himself.  As he had stared continuously at Thorne’s unconscious body, he slowly drowned out Maru’s voice.

He thought he had seen the most tubes connected to a patient when Momo had been here, but now was no comparison.  His vision blurred continuously, and he ignored the members of the fourth division as they came in and out.  He even ignored Matsumoto who had come by to personally escort him to the taichos’ meeting.  He could see nothing but Shirahime and his guilt lain out before him.

“Toshiro-kun,” Momo called to him.  “Shiro Taicho.”

His eyes widened at that name.  “Shirahime?”

He had been holding her hand and now squeezed it tighter.  “Shirahime!”  As he leaned closer, the room spun again, and he felt himself slipping away.

Third Seat Iemura caught him before he could fall forward.

“Let me go!” he protested.  “Shirahime!”

“Toshiro-kun,” Momo said again.  “I’m sorry, Toshiro-kun.  It’s only me.”

He turned to face her.  “You’re lying.  She called me Shiro Taicho.

Momo struggled not to cry in front of him.  “I’m sorry.  I know she always calls you that.  I shouldn’t have said it.”

“You need to rest, Hitsugaya Taicho,” Iemura said.

“Toshiro-kun, please.”

Hitsugaya struggled against Iemura’s hold.  He no longer looked at Iemura or Hinamori but tried to look again at Shirahime.  Iemura grabbed something from inside his pocket and jabbed it against Hitsugaya’s side.  Hitsugaya’s eyes widened, and he fell limp.

“I didn’t want to have to do that,” Iemura said.  “But it can’t be helped.  He needs a room of his own now.”

“Thank you,” Hinamori said.  She looked at her taicho.  Although she told herself Thorne Taicho was simply asleep, she knew that Thorne might never wake up.

Taicho,” she pleaded under her breath.  “My taicho.”

She turned for a moment, embarrassed, but Iemura was no longer there.

She rushed to her taicho’s side, taking the same hand Hitsugaya had held.  Tears flowed freely down her face.  “Taicho.”

If she could tell her just one last thing, what would it be?  How could she summarize it into words?

“Princess of the Heavens,” she began, “Ruler of the White Snow, I don’t know if you are my taicho or just a past life soul, but please bring her back.  I love you, no matter what form you take or what life you have.  Please don’t take my taicho from me.”

She remembered the brief time Shirayukihime had awoken her from her sleep before Aizen had killed her.  She learned only of Thorne’s past life as a princess and those who loved her now.  There had been little time to get to know her then.

Yet when Hinamori woke again, Thorne showed her a brand-new world.  Slowly the wounds from Aizen began to heal and she placed her love for Aizen in her new taicho.  Takeya had warned her to revoke her feelings.  He said that Thorne would never love her the way she had hoped Aizen would, but Hinamori did not care.  In a way, Thorne was like Hinamori.  She had been betrayed by the ones she loved the most—her family in the past life—and suffered for it—both in the past life and in the current one.  Thorne would marry into the royal family to finalize her claim to it.  She was bound by past life and current life duties.  She could never love who she wanted.  She could never marry Shiro.

She was brave and everything Hinamori wanted to be.  By loving Thorne, Hinamori loved herself, something she had not done in a long time.

It’s now or never,” Tobiume told her.

Hinamori rose.  She brushed Thorne’s hair to the side.  “I would give my life for yours.  Takeya would, too.  But the truth is, I can’t live without you.”

Hinamori had grown too dependent on her taichos.  Because of her idolization of Aizen, she had latched on too much to her new taicho.

What would the Spirit of Yukihime require to revive her?  Another life perhaps?  Yes, Hinamori would only have to trade her life for Thorne’s.  She only wished to say goodbye first.

She leaned down and pressed her lips to Thorne’s.



“Welcome back, Mayuri-sama,” Nemu greeted him as he returned.

“Nemu, is it true we cannot contact the Royal Family?”

“Yes, Mayuri-sama, officially.”  She looked at him quizzically.  He was not acting like his usual self.  “But as you know, Yachiru Kusajishi can speak to the crown prince.  At least we don’t need to worry about zero division and the king finding out.  Any news on the Shinnouhi?”

“Shinnouhi has not recovered.  It seems Toshiro Hitsugaya will be the next casualty.  Nemu, contact Urahara.  Then bring me my latest mod soul research.”

“Yes, Mayuri-sama.”

Mayuri wondered if the mod soul research would work this time.  His earlier attempt did not work.  Although it did not separate Thorne’s spirit from her human body, Shirahime had insisted on the mod soul not be destroyed.  He made a body for the soul like he had Nemu, and she had named the mod soul Lafiel.  Lafiel took Urahara’s last name, since he was Shirahime’s father in the past life and would now be Lafiel’s father.

Why did Mayuri give so much to another?  Was it because he still admired the very unpleasant man who was his former taicho?  Was it because Shirahime was royalty?  Did he miss the relationship they had before zero division took her away?  He had no answer for himself.



Tears flowed down Hinamori’s cheek.  This was her last goodbye.  After all, this is how Shiroyuki had done it last time.  But Momo was not royalty.

She stood up, crying harder.  Why did it not work?  Did Shiroyuki love her more than she did?

“Hinamori,” said Unohana.

Hinamori turned to see Unohana in the doorway.

“You don’t have the same powers as the prince.”

“Why isn’t he here?” she asked.

“It is not for us to question the royal family,” Unohana reminded her.

“But Thorne Taicho is one of their own!”

“Hinamori, please say your goodbyes.  Thorne Taicho will return to the world of the living.”

Hinamori stammered, unable to voice her objections.

“Until a new taicho is selected, you will be in charge of the fifth division.  My apologies, Hinamori.  I know it is not what she wants.”

“Then why go along with it?  Is that what your taichos’ meeting was about?”

So, Daichi heard someone say it.  No doubt it was Sou Taicho.

“We have no Central 46, so the Sou Taicho makes all our decisions.  His choice cannot be overridden by anyone except the royal family.”

“But she is the royal family.”

“I’m sorry, Hinamori, but Sou Taicho has spoken.”

“I’m going with her,” Hinamori said softly, then she repeated it louder, “I’m going with her.”

“To the ends of the Earth,” said Unohana, “but right now you have to stay behind.  I must heal her, and you must take care of the fifth division so she can rest easy.”

Shirahime’s fingers twitched, and she felt a sudden desire to drink an ocean’s worth of water.  Funny, she could not see a thing.

“I think I’ve rested enough,” she said, slurring her words.

Unohana and Hinamori turned to her.  Hinamori rushed forward, clasping her hand.

“Kotetsu!” Unohana called.

“I can take care of the fifth division just fine,” Thorne protested as she slurred her words.  “Surely they like me enough.”

“Taicho,” Momo said softly, “my Taicho.  We love you!”

“Funny,” said Shirahime, “I don’t even need a translator to understand that one.”

Momo leaned down and hugged her, although it was awkward with the machines hooked up her.

“I’m never going to leave you,” Momo vowed.

Shirahime patted her head.  “In a thousand lifetimes, there are some things I would never change.”

Momo looked at her and Shirahime just smiled.  She felt her energy drain.  Her hand slowly fell to her side and her eyes rolled upward.  She tried to cry out, but she could not make a sound.

Unohana pressed a hand to Momo’s shoulder, and Momo stepped back.  Isane appeared at Shirahime’s right side, holding her down.  “Taicho?” Isane asked.

Unohana reached into her pocket and drew out a syringe.  She injected it into Shirahime’s arm.  “For the pain,” she said.


Bleach: Cross: Shiro Shattered
Introduction & Chapter List

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[Chapter 1] [Chapter 2] [Chapter 3] [Chapter 4]

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