Rukia has an unexpected encounter in the Human World. Major spoilers for manga chapters 502 and beyond.
The gentle breeze made the trees dance and the soft-pink petals cascade like snow. Rukia stopped walking suddenly as if she heard her name being called. This was her first trip to the Human World in nearly thirty years and she forgot it was the time for Hanami. Surely Renji wouldn’t mind if she was a little late returning from her errand. He was incredibly understanding when it came to things like this. It was one of the main reasons she married him.
Seeing the sakura in bloom reminded her of Ni-sama.
She made her way through the crowed path of onlookers to a small grove of about twenty trees. All the available spots on the lawn had been taken, but she could still stand there for a while and admire. Rukia closed her eyes to try and stall the tears burning to be released. He would not want this. Tearful displays were never favored by her brother and he would be irritated to know that she got all blurry-eyed whenever she thought about him.
But it was hard. She missed him so much. There were so many wonderful things she would have loved to share with him. Rukia could just imagine the proud look he would have had the day she finally mastered her Bankai or when Renji had been promoted to captain of the Sixth Division. Their wedding was a day of great joy, but also one of sorrow considering how many friends had been lost in the last great war of the Soul Society.
A stronger gust of wind swirled the petals around her feet like the great Senbonzakura and she gave a little smile. It was the small things like this that got her through the rough times.
“Satsuki-san?” a nervous voice said behind her, startling her momentarily. When she turned around she was met with a well-dressed young man looking expectantly at her. His hair was short and neat, save for a few longer strands that feel casually into his eyes- his strikingly familiar eyes. “Satsuki-san?” he asked again.
Never in her life had she ever felt such a strong feeling of déjà vu and in that moment she knew who it was that was standing before her. “Huh? Oh, no, that’s not me. Sorry.” Rukia replied trying not to seem as if she’d been taken completely off guard by the reincarnation of her brother. The young man’s expression fell.
“Oh, I’m sorry I bothered you,” he apologized. Ever the proper gentleman. “I’m supposed to be meeting…someone...” he drifted off as he gazed at something just over her shoulder.
When Rukia turned to see what he was looking at she literally had to bite back a gasp. The young woman approaching could have been her twin.
“Taoru-san?” she asked and the young man gave a rather energetic nod. Apparently her brother had learned to loosen up this time around.
Rukia took a step backwards and out of their way as the two closed the distance between them. She was too young to remember Hisana when they were living in Rukongai, but there were still pictures of her in the Kuchiki household. What were the chances? Through all of time and space, through the millions of souls scattered across this existence like sakura petals on a cool, spring breeze, that these two were able to find each other again was nothing short of amazing. She politely excused herself from this beautiful moment and gave them some space.
A calming peace settled over her as she headed back home. Things were going to be different from now on. She couldn’t wait to tell Rangiku about what happened. The strawberry blonde once told her about a visit to the Human World where she saw a little boy stealing candy from a convenience store. The boy noticed that she had watched him take the items and flashed her a very familiar, mischievous grin.
It was a comfort to know that we were all connected by the strings of fate. Sometimes they seemed to stretch into eternity, but they never severed.
I suppose there is still a possibility that Byakuya will be revived somehow, but after chapter 513, I’m not holding out much hope. This was a little closure for Rukia…and me. Feedback is always appreciated.