pr0ntober for na_no_nai/ audra_sama
Ichigo/Tatsuki, locker room. I have NEVER been able to comfortably write Ichigo. XD I think our respective kinds of stupid are too different from each other or something. ONCE AGAIN no actual pr0n I swear I know the point of this month.
Around 940 words. Thanks to jaina for looking it over for me.
Tatsuki slung her bag over one shoulder, taking one last look around the locker room. She clicked off the lights, and closed the door behind her. As usual, she was the last person to leave.
She left the dojo, walking through the yard to the street. After a moment's hesitation at the gate, she turned towards the park, going in the opposite direction from her house.
Tatsuki didn't hurry, enjoying the last of the sun before it set. Everything seemed to glow and thrum with energy on summer evenings. Once at the park, she crossed the grass, finally sitting on a bench and setting her bag beside her.
"Come out, Ichigo," she called. "I'm not in the mood."
Even though she was expecting him, it was still strange to see him seem to appear in front of her like that, his face carefully blank.
She rolled her eyes. "Can't you just walk with me like a normal person? You have to stalk me from the roof?"
"I was just over here, that's all," Ichigo scowled, scratching his head.
"Why do you even bother? You know you can't sneak around worth shit."
He sighed and looked to one side, avoiding her eyes. With the hilt of his enormous sword rising above his bright hair, the idea of him being inconspicuous was laughable. "It hasn't been safe."
Tatsuki gave her own sigh, and leaned forward, resting her arms on her knees. "You don't listen. Did I say don't help me? I said stop stalking me. It's annoying."
"I don't care if I'm annoying you." His brows drew together in a mulish expression she was all too familiar with. "Keigo--"
"Keigo fell down the stairs and hit his head before that Hollow even showed up," Tatsuki said, her voice weary. She sat back, stretching her arm over the back of the bench. "Seriously, you need to get a grip."
"But a Hollow did show up. I don't want you guys to have to worry about that stuff," he said, frowning.
"So are you going to follow me around all the time? Are you going to save me from speeding cars and food poisoning and earthquakes, too?"
"You don't under--"
"Right, I couldn't possibly understand. I'm sure you've worked out some painfully stupid justification in that head of yours."
Between one blink and the next, he was in her face, hands planted next to her shoulders. "I'm trying to keep you safe! Why are you so on my case about this?"
The breeze picked up, carrying with it the smell of some household's dinner; if she concentrated on that, she could hold her irritated expression and ignore the hot prickle of impending tears. "Go ahead and tell yourself that protecting us makes up for you being a shitty friend, but don't waste my time trying to convince me."
She turned to one side, steeling herself against the hurt on his face. "You've got this idea of us, that you want to keep safe and perfect from far away, and if you'd been paying any fucking attention at all, you'd know none of us ever wanted that."
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw him sag, his head almost falling to her shoulder.
"All you put us through," Tatsuki whispered. "And you can't even give me a good reason why it had to be like that."
The hand she could see gripping the back of the bench drew into a fist, before it relaxed and moved to her shoulder. If his touch had been angry, she could have punched him in the face and left. But it was warm and undemanding, and she turned back to face him almost against her will.
"I don't know how else to do this," Ichigo said softly, looking distressed but resolute.
"Retard," she growled. "I already told you. Stop separating yourself. Don't--don't leave us when you don't have to." She glared at him, willing her tears not to fall.
He flinched. "Shit, Tatsuki, don't--"
His panicked eyes filled her vision, and she didn't think, just leaned up, grabbed his top and brought his mouth to hers. He inhaled, then gradually relaxed into the kiss, letting his hand slide into her hair.
Tatsuki had never before allowed herself to think about what it would be like, so the sweet awkwardness of it took her by surprise. Ichigo was tentative as he moved his lips against hers, and despite her boldness in initiating the kiss, so was she.
After a few moments, she pulled back and gave a long, shaky exhale. "Great," she muttered, letting her arms fall to her lap. "Now I look crazy, sitting on a park bench and making out with the air. All I need is a hat made out of aluminum foil and a jar full of piss."
"It's getting dark," Ichigo said absently, pulling his hand from her hair. "No one can see you over here." He was still bent over, one hand on the back of the bench.
"Hell," she muttered. She sniffed and pushed him away, standing up abruptly. "I need to get home."
"I'll walk you." He stepped back, looking at her with determined bemusement, as though she was a new technique he needed to learn.
She paused, then shrugged, picking up her bag. "Whatever."
"Tatsuki." Ichigo crossed his arms. "I'm sorry, all right?"
She blinked, and the hard knot of abandonment and betrayal that had been lodged in her chest for so long began to loosen, just a little. A reluctant smile spread over her face.
"Asshole." She brought her bag up, resting it against her shoulder. "Just don't do it again."