quiet_curiosity: (Hinamori)
quiet_curiosity ([personal profile] quiet_curiosity) wrote2006-11-12 05:09 pm

Once in the Morning, Once before Bed, for [livejournal.com profile] 31_days

Title: Once in the Morning, Once before Bed
Fandom: Bleach
Characters: Hinamori
Words: 837
Rating: PG
Warnings: Soul Society Arc Spoilers
Disclaimer: Bleach is the brainchild of Kubo Tite and is distributed by Shueisha in Japan and Viz Media in the US. I receive no monetary benefit from this work.
Summary: At modest recovery, Hinamori attempts to rejoin the rest of Soul Society

For [livejournal.com profile] 31_days. Prompt Nov. 12: little anodynes that deaden suffering

Slowly, the world began to move again. Hinamori finally found herself released from the Fourth Division infirmary, a small bag of pills in one hand and her sword in the other. She was tired but ready to take on life again. She just didn’t know if her friends would allow her to do so. Nanao and Isane walked her back to her apartment, each trying to hold her hand or help her jump over obstacles that she knew she could move around on her own. And though she received a warm welcome from her division, she could easily tell that they wanted to coddle her. Of course, they covered this over by saying things such as “You should take it easy your first few days back” or “Maybe you should take some time off to clear your thoughts.” Hinamori would have none of it. She calmly explained to them all that she would be taking on her original duties plus the emergency captain powers that had been granted to the Vice Captains of the disgraced divisions. Though no one seemed to like the idea, they begrudgingly accepted it.

And so things moved along. At sunrise, Hinamori would awaken, take a pill, and begin to work on the paperwork that had been left by her door. In due time, she would run off to the Vice Captains’ daily meeting, offering up her opinions with a frequency and forcefulness that she hadn’t seemed to possess before the incident. She would then rush back Fifth Division headquarters and would immediately summon the other seated members of the division. They would caucus about the days planned activities and would finally receive their orders from Hinamori as to what they should supervise. She would always hold one person back, though, and have them help her handle the mountain of paperwork that had piled up within the few hours she had been gone. Usually, this person would have no issue helping, but they would always leave her as quickly as possible, noting to all their friends how her habits mechanically followed those habits she kept with the former Captain when they decided to tackle the paperwork.

Once the paperwork had finally been subdued, Hinamori would wander around to all of the precincts of the division to check on everyone’s progress. New adjuncts were particularly unhappy to see her. She always seemed so aggressive in her admonitions to them, warning them that they would be knocked down to the Seventieth seat if they kept up with such poor work. She had once heard one of them wail “When is the Captain going to pull this bitch back in line?” To her relief, an older officer piped up, saying, “She’s all the Captain we’ve got left. You need to straighten up or you’ll find yourself as a target in the first years’ kidou practice field!” These kinds of outbursts weren’t common, but from her knowledge of division gossip, she knew their sentiments were well shared amongst the younger crew. Inevitably, this would take most of the day. Hinamori, though often frazzled by the behavior of some of younger officers, would find some time to hang out with a few of friends. This was generally done over dinner and included most of the girls from the Shinigami Women’s Association. They knew her well and, because of their hypersensitivity to her recent problems, would keep the conversation light, focusing on things such as the gifts Matsumoto has sent them all from the real world or the new pictures that had been taken of Captain Ukitake for their charity calendar. This dinner would go on for at least an hour. By the time it was over, it would already be dark.

Darkness seemed to bring the world to crashing halt. Not well enough to follow the girls on one of their nights of fun, not sick enough to crawl into bed so early, Hinamori often found herself alone when the sun set. And though she had books to read and records to listen to, she always found dark thoughts creeping into her fantasy, forcing it out and letting the darkness resume its place. With the darkness followed all the pain she had carried over those months. Her chest throbbed almost immediately, initiating a scratching session that would leave her nails slightly bloodied and her chest in just as much pain as it had been before. She would search though her assortment of medications for an astringent but applying it almost always brought back more memories. She would sit there, bloodied piece of cotton in hand, and relive the highlights of the last few months. His voice would rumble through her mind, all tinged with kindness, understanding, and betrayal. “Who are you,” she would mumble through the tears, “because I don’t know anymore.” The voice wouldn’t stop until she stooped to take the sleeping pills that had been prescribed to her. Defeated again, she would crawl into bed and bury her head in her pillow until she fell asleep.