102 Village of the elfs
"Permission Denied. Your strength will be needed in the upcoming battle against the Arrancar. You need to return to Soul Society this instant."
Renji was immediately denied permission to go to Hueco Mundo and retrieve Inoue. Knowing that she was able to meet Ichigo before leaving showed that she had left on her own free will. Itsuki was also there and when Yamamoto talked about returning to Soul Society, he especially looked at Itsuki.
As Rukia rejected the order, a Senkaimon appeared behind them with Byakuya and Kenpachi walking out. Kenpachi looked at Itsuki with eyes filled with a lust for battle while he desperately tried to hold himself back. Byakuya nodded at him and made sure Rukia and Renji got into the Senkaimon before he entered himself. Toshiro and Rangiku also entered and the Senkaimon disappeared leaving only Ichigo and Itsuki.
Ichigo started talking,
"I know you're going to try stop me but, you should know that I'm still going to go any…way…"
Turning around, Ichigo realised that Itsuki had already gone. Itsuki was on a pathway next to the river running through Karakura town as he saw Tatsuki looking frantically around shouting Inoue's name.
She saw Itsuki in front and ran towards him,
"M-master, have you seen Orihime?"
Itsuki remained silent as Tatsuki continued.
"I could always sense her, even if she went far away, I could faintly sense her. But now, I have lost all trace of her."
Tears started to pour out Tatsuki's eyes as she buried her head in Itsuki's chest. Itsuki looked down and sighed, patting her head, he waited for her to calm down.
'Maybe it's time. Well she will still go anyway even if I told her not to.'
Looking at her puffy eyes, Itsuki pushed back any nefarious thoughts and gave her a piece of paper.
"Tomorrow after sunset, come to this location."
"You'll know once you get there."
With that Itsuki disappeared leaving Tatsuki standing there. The next day, Ichigo appeared at the Urahara store looking for a way into Hueco Mundo. When walking inside, he saw Chad and Ishida already standing there. As the three were about to ask Urahara to open the gate, he just said,
"We have to wait for just one more person."
Ichigo was confused. However, his questions were answered as soon as he heard footsteps behind him. Looking back, his eyes couldn't help but widen as he saw who they were waiting for. He wasn't the only one, Ishida and Chad had a similar expression on their face. They couldn't believe their eyes right now.
Tatsuki walked in with an embarrassed expression.
"Then, everyone's here."
Urahara never gave enough time for Ichigo to think as he opened the gate and appeared next to Tatsuki. After hitting her with a stick and causing her to get into Shinigami form, he then started hurrying the four into the portal, telling them how it works. One the four were through, he slowly said,
"You can come out now."
Two teenage boys came out from behind a rock. It was Keigo and Mizuiro. The two looked shocked seeing their best friends run into a portal of some kind. The two looked at each other then at Urahara who was looking at them with a serious face.
"What do you want to do with them?"
Urahara spoke to a fourth person in the area. Looking up, he saw Itsuki looking at them and just walked away, leaving it up to him. Keigo and Mizuiro followed his line of sight and saw the back of Itsuki disappearing from their line of sight.
- Soul Society -
Yamamoto felt the Senkaimon open and the familiar sources of reiatsu enter Seireitei. However, one of his eyebrows twitched and was raised when he felt one missing. Knowing exactly who it was, Yamamoto clicked his tongue as a flash of light shot towards him for the direction of Seireitei. Catching it, he opened it and read the letter. As soon as he read it, a vein popped out from his forehead and he crushed the letter.
The roar was heard throughout Seireitei and everyone felt a wave of heat pass over them.
- Hueco Mundo -
Itsuki appeared in the vast desert once again after seven years. Breathing in, he felt his hollow abilities get stronger and the assimilation start up again. Itsuki had reached a barrier in his fusion with the Black Hollow and Sokyoku. He needed one more final step and the only way he could think off was fighting. He couldn't fight anyone from soul society yet, so he went to his next option, the village of elf's. A village where the residents were just purely Vasto Lordes. He hoped they were strong enough.
With that he disappeared from his position. While Itsuki was going to the village, Seikyo could be seen flying leisurely towards Ichigo and the rest's location.
Itsuki was still able to process his surroundings despite his immense speed and slowly a structure could be faintly seen over the horizon. As Itsuki got closer and closer, more of these structures could be seen until Itsuki clearly made it out. They were trees, large, humongous trees. From Itsuki's knowledge, the small crystal-like trees on the deserts of Hueco Mundo were actually the tip of ones that had grown underground. But judging by the size these were actually growing on the desert.
The closer Itsuki got the more surprised he was. He had just got the basic location of the village from Seikyo, but it seemed that the details were left out. He knew that he would encounter trees on the way but not about the size of them. The place was like a large forest, Itsuki couldn't see into it due to the sheer number of trees. It was as if a very nutritious oasis had appeared in the desert.
Itsuki felt like he was approaching a forest for the dead but with silver crystal trees. With Itsuki nearing the forest, movement was seen before the sand and out jumped two Adjuchas. But by the time they had emerged from the sand, Itsuki was already upon them and with a quick slash, the two had barely said a word before they were cut into pieces.
Once Itsuki entered the forest, he never slowed but rather just jumped on top of the tree branches and continued. Itsuki never knew how long he went on for until he jumped into a clearing. Landing on the ground, he looked ahead, and a small village entered his vision. There were thatched huts within a circle with a rather large on in the middle. Itsuki counted about 30 - 40 huts and saw one humanoid rooster looking at him with wide eyes.
The roosters voice was but off with its head as the sound was too loud for Itsuki's liking. However, this had saved some time for Itsuki as Arrancars started leaving their huts and looked towards Itsuki with the intent to kill. The killing intent started to manifest in physical form and pressure Itsuki as he felt his body sink into the ground a bit and his fusion with his hollow and Sokyoku to once more return.
A smile found Itsuki's lips as he got into stance. The other hollows looked at each other but didn't move. Suddenly a spike shot out from beneath Itsuki, aiming for his heart, but he was able to dodge and send a move of his own. The scorpion like Vasto Lorde never expected Itsuki to dodge and retaliate, but it was too late for him to move and Itsuki's sword had already reached him. Decapitating its head, Itsuki sheathed his sword and looked around,
"Might as well attack me all at once, it will be too late to regret once I've killed you all."
Displeasure was written on all their faces, but they still didn't move, they weren't stupid. However, an apple tree will always have an apple that was a bit slow to grow and there was also one here. A bear like Vasto Lorde appeared behind him with a large mace and smashed downwards.
"Don't get cocky, Shinigami!!"
Itsuki dodged and ran up the mace and was about to strike when a mantis Vasto Lorde attacked. Itsuki blocked its attack and the two exchanged a few rounds, its speed didn't lose out against Itsuki's speed, but he was still a bit slower. Slowly one by one, the other Vasto Lordes joined in and Itsuki began to feet more pressure. A smile that had rarely appeared on Itsuki's face surfaced and excitement grew within him while a manic look covered his eyes.
On the other side of Hueco Mundo, Ichigo and his group had just left the underground checkpoint and were met with Hueco Mundo's desert. Ichigo looked annoyed at Tatsuki as she refused to tell him how she was a Shinigami. A relatively strong one at that. If he had to put it, she would probably give a good fight to Rukia. The only thing Tatsuki would tell him was that he never told her, why should she tell him?
Ichigo clicked his tongue and was prepared to move forward when a shadow shot towards them. Itsuki had barely grasped his zanpakuto until he felt the shadow land on his arm that was holding it.
Ichigo looked shocked as he could feel his heart rate quicken. Slowly tuning around, he noticed the bird on his hand also looking at him while a quick gleam flashed through the eagle's eyes. It was a pure white eagle with ice cold blue eyes. The end of the eagle's beak was like a hook and when it flapped its wings, they stretched to at least three metres. The eagle's body was rather large, reaching 1.5 metres, it was larger than normal golden eagles. Ichigo's eyes moved to his arms where he saw the eagles claws het tighter and tighter before it punctured his skin.
The birds Talons started digging into Ichigo's hands as she turned her head towards Tatsuki. With a squawk she jumped of Ichigo and landed on Tatsuki, decreasing her size. Seikyo was able to resize herself but she couldn't make herself bigger. Although she liked staying in her normal form, whenever she was on Itsuki's shoulders her size was smaller.
Ichigo started holding his hand as Ishida started bandaging his arm. The former looked at Seikyo and was about to attack causing Ishida and Chad to hold him back. They knew who the bird belonged to and that it was an ally, so they had to stop Ichigo before he did something regrettable. Seikyo was a young bird, in Itsuki's eyes and it was one of the reasons why she was spoilt. Looking at Ichigo desperately trying to attack her, she turned her head as a mocking look surfaced on her face. This only resulted in agitating Ichigo further.