Ulquiorra falls backward, the wound in his stomach bleeding heavily and Orihime runs to him. She drops down to her knees and pulls his head into her lap activating her shield. "Hinagiku, Lily, Baigon, Santen Kesshun, I reject!"
The shield surrounds them and she looks down into his eyes. He looks back
up at her, his face blank but annoyance in his eyes.
"Why?" he whispers, refraining from speaking loudly for fear of coughing up blood.
She shakes her head. "Shhh," she orders and she begins
the process of reversing the damage, even as their opponent attacks them. He's
a shinigami from Seireitei, but she's never seen him before.
"You're a fool," Ulquiorra scoffs, but he doesn't stop her healing.
Orihime knows what he says is true but she smiles gently and doesn't reply even as their enemy is
steadily breaking down her shield. Right before it's shattered, she finishes
and tells Lily, Hinagiku and Baigon to release, and they are grateful, returning to the form of a hairclip, along with Ayame
and Shun'o. Ulquiorra stands and knocks the shinigami away when he attempts to
"What a coward," the Espada sneers. "You cannot defeat
myself so you attack a healing woman? Truly pathetic."
The shinigami roars in outrage and attacks Ulquiorra again.
He parries the blow and Orihime thinks she can see a new resolve in his eyes.
Far away, she can hear Ichigo's cry of fury as Gin's reiatsu lessens a bit; the man must have been wounded. Still further, Aizen-sama and Urahara are battling back-to-back, their reiatsu still strong.
A shinigami falls, bleeding badly, beside Orihime. He
looks up at her and she's sorry to see that it's poor Sentaro. He smiles at her
and reaches out. "I know... Your
heart is right," he whispers and then his eyes lose their light.
"Orihime!" Ulquiorra calls, before appearing beside her. He
looks down and frowns. "Close his eyes," he orders, before returning to his battle.
She's touched when she realizes that he'd been concerned for her and she obeys his request, closing
poor Sentaro's eyes, and arranging his arms beside his body. Nearby is Kiyone,
his killer, on her knees crying. Orihime can understand and she goes to the other
woman and holds her. She knows how hard it must have been, and despite the fact
that they are enemies, Kiyone holds onto her desperately, whispering how sorry she is.
Orihime screams when a sword goes through Kiyone's chest, and she looks up in shock to see Soifon,
her teeth gritted in fury. The second company captain raises her hand and prepares
to strike with her zanpakuto. And suddenly, Ulquiorra and she are clashing swords,
and she stares in shock as he falls a second time. She calls up her shield again,
and blocks Soifon's attacks.
"Ulquiorra-sama," she asks, afraid. His eyes are closed
and something twists uncertainly inside her. "Ayame, Shun'o! Soten Kisshun, I reject!" she cries helplessly, tears running down her cheeks and onto his face. "Don't die, Ulquiorra-sama," she whispers. She hopes he can
At some point, between Neliel appearing to assist them and completing the healing process, she closes
her eyes and begins to sob carelessly, hoping he won't die. Something cold touches
her face and she opens them again, looking down into a sea of deep, calm green. His
fingers brush away her tears, his face blank.
"Don't cry, it's annoying," he states and she wants to laugh, because that's such an Ulquiorra thing
Then she's finished healing him and he rises and helps Neliel take Soifon down. Despite how foolish it is to think, she wishes with all her heart that she can stay beside him forever.
He saves her again, and calls her
foolish for spacing out, and she knows he's right. She stands, and begins to
heal whoever on their side that she can, starting with Gin-sama.