[3rd/3rd] Week 87: Okaeshin's new teddy bear

FogOverLondon

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Endymion had only recently recovered, still wrapped in a sling for his left arm, and now he had been called to the Division headquarters to meet the Third Seat, Okaeshin. She had been rumored to be...spirited. A trait he could definitely handle but with his evolving sense of self, just how he might handle it would be the real question.

He carefully approached the door to the office, it was normally an imposing walk to the Taichou's office, but ever since Ritoru-Taichou had been dispatched on a new border patrol mission of some sort, Okaeshin had been quick to take care of things in his place. If in only in deed alone, she was worthy of her seat in his mind.

He paused, halting the back of the knuckle of his hand hovering at the door. What would she need from a newly-recovered, administrative type such as himself? He wasn't usually called upon directly for much, his lowly post didn't call for much face to face interaction. What could the news possibly be about?

Only this will let me see I guess, he thought, proceeding to knock at the door.

"Ma'am, Endymion Vivaldr...(ahem!)...Akai, reporting for summons!"


There was a yelp from inside the office, and at the pain filled sound, the Norseman quickly opened the door, only to see noone in the room. Confused, he stuck his head in, calling out inquiringly.

From behind the mahogany desk, a hand rose up and fell over the polished surface, a support as Okaeshin picked herself up from where she had fallen. The swivel chair beside her slowed its furious revolution, coming to an innocent stop, having taken delight in dumping its occupant on her ass, just because she was having too much fun spinning and spinning and spinning.

The roughed up officer collapsed onto the desk, her hair a mess as she looked up dizzily at the tall, solidly built man who had entered. "Oh hiya. You must be the head on fire bearman. Nice to meetcha." A nail-painted hand stretched itself across the mahogany.


"Bear...man?” He repeated with perplexity.
The odd girl continued to straighten her posture in the unruly furnishing and Endymion even snickered a bit when he thought he saw her hit the chair arm for its uncooperativeness. But that wasn’t why he was here, even if it should have been. He made his left arm rigid at his side and tucked in his other arm, which was braced with a sling.

Repeating his earlier introduction he spoke with little vigor, as if the formality of introducing himself held little interest compared to the, yet unstated, reason he was summoned.

"Akai, assistant to the administrative office division, reporting Teishou-san.”


For a moment, Okaeshin stared at him. Or rather, stared up at him. The man was huge. Snapping out of it, she waved a hand, bright blue nail polish glinting in the sunlight streaming from the lone window behind her.

"Um, at ease." Did people say that? Well, it didn't matter. Pulling a pile of wrinkled papers from her desk, the Third Seat sifted through them, tossing them away one by until she found what she was looking for. Enymion Vivaldr's profile.

"Kay, bearman. It says here that you were in the Fourth being sewed together for a month. Before that, you were more of a desk shinigami than one that did work in the field." Flipping the first page over, Okaeshin continued browsing, refreshing her memory. She had read through this previously, relatively unknown Death God's portfolio before, although it had been strictly out of accidental coincidence, really. If he hadn't needed paperwork for being so sliced up, she wouldn't have ever heard of him, but it was a good thing that he had. Now that she saw him, she was pretty sure that he was exactly what she needed.

He held himself with surety, this beast of a man. His eyes were steady, voice held a tone of command. These things weren't readily noticeable, but they were there. Thanks to a childhood where being able to read people meant life or death, Okaeshin could see the empathy Endymion was capable of. A gentle giant.

Tossing the papers down onto the desk, she asked, still swiveling in her chair, "So what do you say to that?"


"I say that I fill the role that my division needs me in. Right now that seems to be in the company of paper and ink...lots of paper and not enough ink.” He answered sardonically, averting his gaze at the painful thought of the paperwork involved with each active member of the Third Division.

Endymion managed to see across the desk, which seemed more like Okaeshin had taken the desk meant for him and he the one that belonged to her with the way her desk seemed to consume her. It was like watching her desk swallow her whole as her body disappeared beneath it. He almost laughed at the irony.

Maybe we really did switch desks... he thought in jest.

"I hope, little one, that you didn’t call me here just to make fun of my blatant lack of speed in a speed based division.”

His tone was less offensive and more his nervously injected humor. He noticed a slight twitch as she looked up from the file bearing his name.

Good job Endymion, you managed to say the one thing that would be off-putting enough to make her mad.



At the word 'little', Okaeshin felt herself straighten in her chair, scooting herself so she sat just a bit higher. Shooting a look at the still grinning man, she crossed her legs before letting out a cough.

"Actually, no. You seemed to be doing a better job behind the desk anyways. Behind the desk and behind others." As she spoke, the girl wiggled slightly, as subtly as she could, until she was spinning in her chair from side to side.

As she turned, she waved the profile at Endymion. "What I mean by that is, I see you watching people's backs, saving people's lives, making sure things are tied, all without letting anybody know.

Humility. The Third Division needed a dose of it. Well, she needed a dose of it. Koko had been right. Kind of. She had gotten too proud of her role in the Blitzkrieg. Too sure of herself in her dedication. She had forgotten there were people like Endymion.

Overqualified for what they were underestimated as. He was the third unseated shinigami to open her eyes just a bit more, to crack that shell just a bit further. And she had only read his profile.

Life was ridiculous sometimes.

The small girl smiled. "Bearman." She paused, enjoying the moment, happier than she had been in a long time. "You are promoted to Sixth Seat." Looking up, her smile grew wider. "And sit down. There's a chair right there and you're making my neck hurt."


As he squeezed into the plastic chair he noted that she began to swivel. She seemed almost...excited that he was being promoted. But he was reluctant to take up such a position.

He studied the girl for a moment; her mixed look of excitement and an odd anxiety was well noted as he fidgeted against it.

No getting out of it, eh? He thought.

Sighing in a bold breath he scooted the chair forward. Each scoot filled the silence with plastic screeching across the floor boards as he inched closer to her desk. Then, as he leaned forward he put a thick index finger on the desk.

"Okay, so I’m being promoted, I suppose that’s what the division asks of me.” He started, his voice resolute and strong toned as he raised his voice, "But know that I’m hesitant. And not only that, I may hear back about my request for an Eleventh Division transfer any day now. So if I take up this role, it will be only because you have led the division beautifully for someone that isn’t a captain. Okaeshin, I respect your enthusiasm too much to turn this down. Does that sit okay with you – that the closest thing to an equal you’ll have is not even sure if he’s half as dependable as you are?”


"It doesn't matter what you think of yourself. It only matters if you can pull it off." Okaeshin flapped a hand at his words. "You say you aren't dependable, but from what I see, you've been pretty much the tree a lot of these initiates lean on when they first start out. And I'll worry about the Eleventh when Leon Taichou himself calls you to him. Until then, you're stuck under me." The tattooed Death God grinned widely.

Well at least she was direct. He again made the mental note that he would have to learn to be direct as well. It was something that he currently and definitively lacked.

"If you say so.” He said, affirming her assessment of his situation.
"I might as well help out,” he said, studying her in the face for a moment.

Someone like her... ‘could become a great friend’. Is exactly what he wanted to think, but embarrassed to where his mind might lead him he silenced the thought altogether, choosing to instead extend a hand toward her across the sea of wood that was her desk.

"No, I’d be glad to help out. Thank you for the opportunity Third Seat Teishou. So then, what is our first adventure together?”

"Well, I do have a couple things I need some help with and you’re just the bearman I was looking for to help...” She said with an impish giggle to follow.

Forcing a smile he spoke though his teeth "Great...”

Behind his toothy smile his anxiousness swelled in his mind.

I think being around her things could get interesting...
 

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