Spoilers/Warnings: AU. I am not very familiar with the Bleach anime, and Katen Kyokotsu's personality is based on the manga and my own suppositions.
Disclaimer: I do not own Bleach or its characters.
Summery: A mysterious pair of swords draws Nanao into the shadows, and she finds that just maybe she belongs there as well.
Tea in the Garden
Nanao let out a deep sigh and reached for her cup of tea. Given the insanity of the Eighth Division offices as of late, she had taken her paperwork and escaped to the sanctuary of Shunsui's home. It had proved quite effective so far. She had managed to get through two thirds of her paperwork in an hour which was the benefit of not being interrupted every two minutes. She wasn't actually going to blame Shunsui for the craziness this time. He had been out of town for the past two weeks on a mission with Jyuushiro. And unfortunately, that had seemed to signal all of the especially crazy supernatural shenanigans to start.
She had been kept very busy both putting out fires the entire time, and the paperwork had suffered. And while she might have all those fires put out now, that didn't mean the rest of the division wasn't still reeling from it all. Quite honestly, only half of the chaos had been the incidents, the rest of it had been her division members' reactions to the incidents. Still, things were calm enough now that she felt safe to slip away and do her paperwork elsewhere. Nanao was going to be very happy when Shunsui got home from his mission. He was much better with dealing the personnel issues than she was. She dealt with the paperwork, and he dealt with the people. It was one of the reasons they made such an effective team.
Things had quieted down since Stark thankfully. Nanao had been able to settle in to a normal routine with the division, and she was slowly getting used to the world she was now a part of. It still felt strange some times when she was at her job the museum. She'd walk through the museum and wonder just how many items originally had issues that the shinigami needed to deal with. She was finding about two or three a month, so clearly it had been an issue in the past.
Her relationship with Shunsui had also settled into something rather routine. She was no longer living with the man, but she did spend quite a bit of time at his home, and it was rare for them not to share at least one meal a day. To be honest, Nanao was more than a little surprised at how domestic the two of them had become. Not that she minded though. Nanao was more than happy with the way things turned out. She enjoyed quiet evenings spent in Shunsui's kitchen debating favorite books and Saturdays spent on long walks and poking through bookshops. She hadn't been looking for any sort of relationship when all of this started, but she wasn't about to look a gift horse in the mouth.
Finishing off the last of tea, Nanao picked up another form. At this rate, she would be done in another half hour. Then she would just eventually have to figure out dinner. But that could wait. Nanao zoned out a little as she continued filling out the paperwork. Most of it was repetitive, and at this point she knew many of these forms by heart.
"What do you think about curry for dinner, precious?" Shunsui's voice brought her back to the present.
"Sounds good." She looked up to find him holding out a fresh pot of tea. "When did you get home?"
"About twenty-five minutes ago." He leaned in to kiss her and refill her teacup. "You seemed busy. Almost done?"
She glanced at the pile of remaining forms. "Ten more minutes tops."
"Good." He stole another kiss. "I'm going to start the curry."
Nanao hadn't been looking romance, adventure, or the supernatural when she'd taken Katen Kyokotsu home in an attempt to properly catalog what she thought was an artifact, but she didn't regret that any of it had come her way.