[Bleach] Playing With Fire – Need for Change

“I’m going ta cut it.”

Kisuke’s hands stop mid-comb, fingers buried in lengths of blond hair. “Why?” he asks, forcing himself to resume. The repetitive motion is as soothing to him as it is to Shinji.

“Because it’s who I used ta be. Who I’m not anymore,” Shinji replies, hands flat on his thighs, but Kisuke can see his fingers curling and uncurling. Shinji’s reiatsu is a muddled mess, occasionally flaring, as he fights to keep it under control.

Kisuke chews on the inside of his cheek for a long moment. “You’re still you,” he says, watching the comb slide through Shinj’s long hair, from root to tip, over and over.

“No. Not anymore. Now there’s him.” The last is said with so much loathing that Kisuke nearly takes a step back.

His lips thin and he sets the comb aside, choosing to set his palms on Shinji’s shoulders instead. He can feel the restless reiatsu, feeling the churning of darker energies that have yet to fully merge with Shinji’s Shinigami abilities.

Kisuke honestly doesn’t know what to say in return. He doesn’t know precisely what Shinji is going through. He’s done his best to help and in the end, it’s just not good enough. He’s actually surprised Shinji doesn’t resent him for it.

“You’re still you,” he repeats, more firmly this time. “And I like your hair the way it is.”

Shinji snorts, and one of his hands lift, settling over Kisuke’s. “Thanks,” he says, and squeezes Kisuke’s hand. “But I’m still goin’ ta cut it.”

He should have known. Shinji is nothing if not stubborn, and once he’s made his mind up about something, nothing will change it.

Kisuke ghosts his fingers over the sensitive sides of Shinji’s neck. “If you insist.”

“I do.” Shinji rises to his feet, dislodging Kisuke’s hold, but turning around to face Kisuke which makes up for it. “So if yer done playin’ with my hair, there are better things we could be doin’.”

Kisuke’s lips quirk toward a smile. “That’s one of the worst pick up lines I’ve ever heard.”

“So sue me. I’m rusty.”

“Only a little,” Kisuke murmurs, and cups Shinji’s face, pulling him into a kiss. It won’t heal him by any means, but it’s a start. He’ll settle for that right now.


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