Careless Wonder

A girl with strange light red hair, borderline pink, appears out of nowhere from Ichigo's past and demands that she speaks with his father... and why is Urahara looking for her? Ichigo/oc

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2. Chapter Two: Cold

Careless Wonder

Chapter Two: Cold

Ichigo's eyes twitched back and forth from his father and the girl named Aria. All three sat at the kitchen table sipping tea… Sipping tea like they supposedly did it every day! (Isshin and Aria sat across from one another and Ichigo sat at the end of the table closest to them). Earlier, when his two sisters arrived back from school his father made sandwiches and sent them both to their rooms giving the excuse that their young ears hadn't matured enough to listen in on their conversation. Itchigo's face was red with his own hand print after his sisters went upstairs.

He watched as Aria reached for the salt shaker and began to shake some salt into her tea, his eyes bulged out of their sockets as she did so. "What are you doing?!" He said with disgust as Aria took a sip of her salted tea.

She peeked her eye at him as she sipped. "It wasn't salty enough."

"Tea isn't supposed to be salty!"

"So says you." She placed the tea cup on the table, her hands tightening around it as she watched the hazel liquid swirl in the cup. "Why did you want me to come see you, Isshin? I hope it's something important."

Isshin set his own tea cup down as he looked up to see her face. She didn't bother to meet his gaze. "You do know Aizen was defeated. There is no need for you to hide anymore."

Aria's left eye twitched as she glanced up at the old Shinigami from behind her bangs. "Was that all? To tell me something I already know? This was a waste of my time."

"I wasn't finished." Isshin stared solemnly at the red haired teen. "Like I said, you don't have to hide anymore. Stay here with my family and live a normal life that doesn't involve looking over your shoulder every second of every day."

Ichigo stared at the girl watching to see her reaction. He was against the idea of letting a stranger live in their home, but his father seemed to trust her so he didn't voice his opinion on the matter. He, in a way, trusted his dads' judgment with this particular girl (Also due to the fact he felt like he owed her for saving him in the past). Even though he didn't voice his thoughts, his eye still twitched when his father suggested the idea.

"I don't need your sympathy, old man. Just because you and my mother were childhood friends doesn't mean you should feel obligated to take care of me after her death." She sounded rather annoyed about the idea.

Ichigo noticed how his father's eyes hardened when she mentioned her mother's death, her, on the other hand, didn't seemed as fazed by her words. Isshin's lips set to a fine line. "I didn't mean it like that. There's people who are worried about you and want to know that you are okay. You can't keep up this charade…"

She slammed her hand down as she got up from her seat glaring down at Isshin with anger. "You have no idea what you're talkin' about! I don't have friends, Isshin. I don't have anyone and I don't need someone or anyone. I've lived alone since I was ten and nothing has to change. I did fine then I can manage now. You're such an idiot!"

Ichigo stood up this time, his hands turned to fists at his sides. "What the hell is wrong with you? He's only trying to help you and all you can do is call him an idiot for worrying about you!"

"This has nothing to do with you so stay out of it," she said between clenched teeth, her eyes shifting from Isshin and Ichigo. She didn't have any idea why he was in this conversation in the first place. It had nothing to do with him. Why did Isshin allow him to stay?"

"Calm down, Ichigo," His father said calmly as he looked at his son with a level stare. He glanced back at Aria, his eyes actually softening. "I'm sorry to upset you, Aria. I only want what's best for you."

"Damn it," she half sighed, half seethed. "Stop it. You're not my father."

Isshin stood up this time sighing mostly to himself, his palms laid flat against the table. "No, I'm not. But your father did ask me to take care of you if he ever passed un-expectantly, as well as your mother. I was planning on keeping that promise but you up and disappeared on us. It wasn't until a few days ago Urahara found out your location. If you didn't want us to find you then why did you give away your location?" He stared down at her, Ichigo now noticing the height difference. Aria was pretty short, if he had to guess he suspected she only went up to his mid chest.

Aria looked away, unable to look into the older Soul Reapers eyes. She sat back down with her arms crossed, emotions flashing through her eyes as she thought about something. Isshin mimicked her move and sat down as well. Ichigo, however, stayed standing up as he watched the two with his own arms crossed but only from annoyance.

"I…" She hesitated. She chewed on her bottom lip and closed her eyes, her lip now sheathed underneath her upper teeth. "I lost control."

Isshin's eyes widened at the new information. Then was set back to firm as he stared intently at the young girl. "Did anyone get hurt? Or…"

She shook her head, diverting her gaze toward something to her left. "No one was there. Not this time."

"Okay, that's it." Ichigo sat down but still had his arms crossed as he stared down the two people at his table. "What the hell are you guys talking about? I'm going to find out sooner or later so spill it."

Aria shook her head and Isshin just sighed. "It's…" Isshin began but thought better of what he was going to say. "Well, actually you would understand." Aria finally looked at the man with her eyebrow raised with question. He glanced at her and said, "You see, Ichigo here is a Visard as well, but unlike you he can control his… other side… to a certain extent at least."

Ichigo's eyes grew wide with surprise as he looked at the girl who stared back at him equally surprised. "I – I think I'm starting to understand."

"Great," Her voice thick with sarcasm. "I just love bonding."

"What the…" He raised his voice, ready to insult, but his father cut him off.

"Ichigo, enough!" His father warned.

"What! She started it!"

Isshin turned his attention back to Aria ignoring his own son. "He knows people that can help you. The very same people that helped him. Stay here with us for a bit until you learn to control it. Then after that you can go anywhere you want without me protesting."

Aria sighed. She brought her hand to her face pinching the bridge of her nose as she thought. "Do I even have a choice?" She said mostly to herself. She looked back up at Isshin and leaned back in her seat while crossing her arms once more. "Fine. But any funny business and I'm out of here."

Isshin shot up from his seat with his right fist extended up into the air, his eyes sparkling with pride. "Yes! I win! I have yet another daughter to love and care for."

Aria smacked her head to the table and groaned. Ichigo slapped his hand to his face for the second time. "You're an idiot," Aria groaned out.

Isshin coughed into his hand and crossed his arms, his chin high in the air, his eyes set in determination. "Now head over to Urahara's and show him you're still alive. You can at least do that much on your own."

"No. I'm not going to go see that pervert."

His eyes bugged out of his head, his face turning red. "If it wasn't for Urahara you wouldn't even be here!" He argued.

"Well, the last time I went there he drugged me. Who knows what he did to me when I was passed out!" Aria stood up with her hand fisted in front of her face while showing her teeth with distaste.

Ichigo mouth fell open. "He did what!"

Aria turned her head to the orange hair teen, her expression not changing. "Yeah, he drugged me while he offered me food and I found myself outside in the rain in front of his shop with his doors locked!"

Ichigo's eyebrow twitched as he thought about it. "No wonder you ran away."

Isshin slapped his hands to his cheeks and shook it back and forth quickly. "He would never do such a thing! He used to be a captain! And it doesn't matter you're going there whether you like it or not!" He turned toward his son suddenly appearing in front of him as he gripped his shoulders, his eyes on fire as he stared down his only son. "And you're going to make sure she makes it there!"

"I'm what! I never agreed to this!"

Ichigo kicked the rock that found its way into his path as he trailed behind Aria who had her hands in her front pockets and her hoodie back on. After arguing further with his father he finally gave up and dragged Aria out by the arm while she herself protested. However, she agreed to go when Isshin followed them outside and told them not to stop anywhere to do any funny business. When he said that sentence they could hear the double meaning.

"I swear I'm adopted," Ichigo kicked another rock and he slumped forward with his hands in his own pockets and glaring at the girl in front of him. Damn, way to spend his evening babysitting a grown woman.

But he couldn't get the thought out of his mind when she said she had another accident and was a Visard like him, but – couldn't control it. Depending how strong she was, that could lead to absolute devastation wherever she lost control. But, how did she lose control and… what was she? Is she a Soul Reaper?

'I didn't know there was someone else like me. I thought I was the only one.' He remembered her saying. His eyes grew wide at that bit of knowledge. She knew what he was – and she was someone just like him.

"Hey," He called out. "Are you a Soul Reaper?" He was straight to the point, not caring he was being blunt going about it. He sort of already knew her answer.

Aria turned her head to the side to look back at him then turned forward to look ahead again. "No."

"A Substitute Soul Reaper?"

She snorted, "Not even close."

"Then what are you?"

"Something."

Ichigo felt his eyebrow twitch with extreme annoyance. "Are you always this vague?"

"I try to be."

He increased his speed making his strides longer until he was walking parallel from the red head. "Well stop being too vague. If you want me to help you, you need to open up a little bit more."

She stopped and turned her head to glare at the orange haired teen. "And why should I tell you anything? You're losing your powers after all. I can feel your damn Reitsu disappearing slowly as the seconds tick by. So why should I trust you with any information when you're going to be like any other human being? To tell you the truth, I know you are incapable of helping me. You're too weak and useless." She turned sharp on her heel and continued to walk toward Urahara's shop not bothering to wait up for the shocked Itchigo.

He stood there, staring at the spot Aria was just at, unable to look away.

She – was right. He was losing his powers slowly, growing weaker and weaker as the days passed. He turned his head slightly to the right to watch her walk off but was surprised to see that she stopped and was looking back at him. Her eyes held level with his when he looked up at her. He didn't understand why she had stopped to look back. It confused the hell out of him.

She closed her eyes and shook her head and turned back to walk on her desires path. Ichigo watched her for another second or two, then finally moved on after her, but keeping his distance as they walked in silence.

The sun was setting over the horizon when they finally reached Urahara's shop. She stopped her walking and looked up at the shop, sighing to herself. "Hasn't changed." She said mostly to herself. Her eyes set on the door as her foot took a step forward and stopped, hesitated. Her breath hitched in her throat when an image of her popped up to her mind bloody and on the brink of death, lying on those very floors inside the shop. She brought her leg back to her side as she cursed herself. She was being weak.

"Is there anything wrong?" Ichigo asked from behind as he watched her hesitation.

She turned her head to look at him from the corner of her left eye. He stared back at her and she could still see the emotional hurt in his eyes she herself inflicted. She turned her head again, not caring. "Nothing. I was just thinking about the last time I was here. The place hasn't changed. Typical really."

She took in a slow breath of air and walked forward. She opened the door and took a step inside with Ichigo following close by. The store seemed empty, the lights were off giving the shop an ominous feeling. "Well, this is strange. Someone is usually always here." Ichigo sighed to himself not liking how his day had been going.

"Um, excuse me," A small, soft voice said from behind. Both Ichigo and Aria jumped forward and twirled around with their eyes wide. "Sorry for scaring you. Is there anything you need?"

"Oh, Ururu, it's just you," Ichigo dusted the invisible dirt off his clothes acting like nothing happened and the fact he wasn't scared from the little girl that suddenly popped up behind them in the doorway. "Where's Kiskue? Is he here?"

Ururu nodded, her hand tightened around the handle of the broom she was holding. "He's in the back checking inventory." Suddenly, a kid with red hair popped out of nowhere and smacked the little girl across the head. She dropped the broom to bring her hands to her head where she cupped the wound with her tiny fingers.

"Ururu, what are you doing? The shop isn't going to get clean with you just standing there doing nothing!" He gritted his teeth at the girl but soon stopped and turned toward the two teens, his eyes glancing back and forth between them. "What do you guys want?"

"Aria…" She froze when her name was called from an all too familiar voice from behind her. She slowly turned around with Ichigo following her moves and looked at the blonde hair man with a hat and hard stare set visible in his eyes. "It's been awhile."

Again, Ichigo felt uncomfortable as the two stared at each other, the tension between the too almost visible in the air. Urahara was the first to move as he walked over to the red haired teen, his eyes never leaving hers. Aria visibly flinched when he was standing in front of her, but didn't break eye contact with the blonde man.

Then Urahara did something Ichigo wasn't expecting. He wrapped his left arm around her shoulders and brought her to his chest in a soft hug. She let him drag her forward until her forehead laid against his chest, her eyes not closing as she stared forward. "It's been too long. I don't understand why you left I could have protected you, kept you here in secret. No one would have found you."

Finally, Aria closed her eyes, she brought her arms up and wrapped them around his waist, returning the hug. "Because I wouldn't have forgave myself if anything happened to you, idiot."

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