180. Something in The Aftermath
181. AND THE RAIN LEFT OFF
182. GET BACK FROM THE STORM [TRIGGER FOR A NEW CONCERTO]
183. eyes of the unknown
185. BE MY FAMILY OR NOT
186. Tell Your Children The Truth
187. THE CIGAR BLUES PART TWO
179. Confession in the Twilight
180. Something in the Aftermath
181. AND THE RAIN LEFT OFF
182. GET BACK FROM THE STORM (TRIGGER FOR A NEW CONCERTO)
183. eyes of the unknown
185. BE MY FAMILY OR NOT
186. Tell Your Children the Truth
187. THE CIGAR BLUES, PART TWO
BE MY FAMILY OR NOT is the twenty-first volume of the Bleach manga series.
The Shinigami are healed from their injuries and Byakuya tells Rukia why he didn't do anything to stop her execution.
The 4th Division arrives on the Sōkyoku Hill to begin treatment and evacuation under the command of 3rd Seat Yasochika Iemura. Iemura makes sure the Ryoka are also treated, saying they now enjoy the status of "Saviors of the Soul Society". Captain Retsu Unohana comes bearing news about Captain Tōshirō Hitsugaya and Lieutenant Momo Hinamori, who have escaped death. Iemura reports that the two most severely injured are Byakuya Kuchiki and Ichigo Kurosaki, but Unohana, seeing Orihime Inoue's Sōten Kisshun at work, says there is no need to worry about the latter.
Approaching Captain Byakuya Kuchiki, she tells him he has been reckless. Seeing Rukia Kuchiki nearby, she calls for her to come. Byakuya tells Rukia the real motive behind her adoption: His wife, Hisana Kuchiki, was her older sister. She had asked him on her death bed to find and look after her younger sister, whom she abandoned. When the orders came for her arrest and execution, he was torn between his promise to his dead wife and the vow he made at his parents graves to always adhere to the law, a vow he made when he forced his clan to accept Rukia's adoption, which was against the law. He apologizes to Rukia for having chosen to protect his vow over his promise.
Later, Lieutenant Isane Kotetsu wakes up from yet another nightmare then thinks where she should go. After leaving her room, she is then acknowledged by Captain Unohana who tells her what a day they had. She then tells Isane to rest after she calms down.
In the aftermath of Sōsuke Aizen's betrayal, those left behind try to pick-up the pieces.
Goteitaishi and the other injured 11th Division Shinigami start to cause trouble in the Sōgō Kyūgo Tsumesho, but Unohana intervenes and tells them that while they are in the Sōgō Kyūgo Tsumesho, their lives are in the hands of the 4th Division. The terrified Shinigami immediately quiet down, as Unohana serenely suggest that they open a window given how nice a day it is. Elsewhere in the 4th Division, Uryū Ishida presents to Yasutora Sado and Orihime clothes similar to what they wore coming to Soul Society, reasoning that they cannot return to the Human World wearing the Shinigami's shihakushō. Chad notices that the pattern on his tank top is different, but Ishida explains that he added his own touches. Chad also comments that Ishida is better at making Women's clothes after seeing the top Ishida made for Orihime and the one piece dress he made for Rukia. Impressed with the dress, Orihime goes off to show it to Rukia, as Ishida complements Chad on the latter looking like a Quincy.
Back in the 11th Division, 3rd Seat Ikkaku Madarame is feeling well enough to spar, but is unimpressed with the rest of the squad, calling them all cowards. Ichigo then steps forward, but Ikkaku asks if he is all right to spar, given that he just left the sick bed. Ichigo tells him that he's fine and says he wasn't sick, just injured. They then get into a semantics debate where Ikkaku insists that the term "sick bed" can apply to injuries as well, with Ichigo insisting that, that can't be. They two of them decide that the winner of the bout is the one with the correct semantics and charge at each other, but are interrupted by the entrance of Captain Kenpachi Zaraki and Lieutenant Yachiru Kusajishi. Kenpachi is pleased to see that Ichigo is doing well, as it means that he doesn't have to hold back. As Kenpachi proceeds to attack Ichigo, Ichigo runs away, saying that he will never fight Kenpachi ever again. Hearing the commotion, 5th Seat Yumichika Ayasegawa complains of the rowdy behavior to Lieutenant Tetsuzaemon Iba, who, in-turn, states that it would be worse if it was too quiet. Yumichika then wonders why Iba is not with his captain. Iba replies that Komamura has asked to be left alone.
Captain Sajin Komamura himself is at the grave of Kaname Tōsen's friend and wonders what she would have said to stop Tōsen. Lieutenant Shūhei Hisagi comes to the grave site, but is surprised by the presence of Komamura. As Komamura starts to leave, Hisagi asks him if he thinks that Tōsen will ever come back to that spot. Komamura reassures Hisagi, telling him that with their own hands they will open Tōsen's eyes.
Meanwhile, Lieutenant Rangiku Matsumoto sits, thinking back to Gin Ichimaru's last words. She remembers how he told her that he wouldn't have minded being her prisoner a little longer and how he said sorry. She says that that is what she hates most about him. She sighs and calls Gin an idiot out loud. Hitsugaya asks who she is referring to, causing Rangiku to jump in shock and then proceed to berate Hitsugaya for sneaking up on her, as well as how he almost made her boobs fall out. Hitsugaya says its a good thing her boobs didn't falls out, as she has a visitor. In the doorway is an uncomfortable looking Lieutenant Izuru Kira, but Rangiku just smiles and offers him some soba buns. A little later, both Rangiku and Kira are horribly drunk, with Rangiku calling Gin a pig head and demanding to know what's up with his squinting eyes and declaring that she doesn't care if he dies. Kira agrees with her and declares he's going to drink until he pukes, as Hitsugaya slips out of the room, claiming to go to the bathroom, but the Rangiku tells him to take care. Hitsugaya ends up at Hinamori's room, watching the unconscious Hinamori.
Meanwhile, Orihime continues to think about how cute the dress Ishida made for Rukia is. She then theorizes that Ishida must be in love with Rukia, but while she is proud of having used her womanly intuition, she is way off the mark. She drops into Rukia's room to show her the dress, but she is not there. She then finds Ichigo, who had been running around Seireitei to escape Kenpachi and wondering how he ever beat Kenpachi, and tells him that she can't find Rukia anywhere in Seireitei.
Ichigo gets a Substitute Shinigami Badge and leaves back to the Human World with his friends.
Renji is sitting with a recovering Byakuya, who asked Lieutenant Renji Abarai if he wished Byakuya was dead. Renji says no way, cause without him, Renji would have no reason to become stronger. Just then, Ichigo comes barging in and interrupts Renji, who was apparently about to say something really cool. Renji yells at Ichigo, who apologizes and then asks where Rukia is, but those two don’t know where Rukia went either. So Ichigo says bye and leaves. After he leaves, Byakuya expresses his concern about Ichigo. When Renji asks about it, Byakuya replies that he was hoping Ichigo would stop using his first name and that he finds Ichigo very disrespectful.
Since Renji doesn't know, Ichigo figures out that probably no one else would either. He suspects that there’s only one place she could have gone. On their way, they are invited by Rangiku to have a drink first. Rangiku happens to have invited a few lieutenants and captains already. Ichigo turns down the invitation. Continuing his search, he finds out that Rukia went out and found Kūkaku Shiba and Ganju Shiba so that she could apologize to them for killing Kaien Shiba. However, Kūkaku had long since learned the truth from Captain Jūshirō Ukitake, so she is already prepared to forgive Rukia if she asks. When Ichigo and Inoue show up, Rukia breaks the news to them that she’s staying in Soul Society and not going back. Although Ichigo's slightly surprised, he realizes that if that’s what Rukia wants, then it is okay. The next day, Ichigo and company leave through the special Senkaimon, after saying their goodbyes and after Ukitake gives Ichigo a Substitute Shinigami Badge.
182. GET BACK FROM THE STORM [TRIGGER FOR A NEW CONCERTO]
Ichigo and his friends head back to their homes.
Ichigo and company, including Yoruichi Shihōin in cat form, travel back through the Dangai to get to the Human World. They emerge above the city and quickly begin falling toward the ground. Kisuke Urahara and his workers catch them and welcome them home. Urahara formally apologizes about keeping the Hōgyoku a secret, but Ichigo doesn't mind. However, he does tell Urahara to apologize to Rukia the next time they meet. Everyone gets off at their own home, though Ishida tells Ichigo that when they meet again, they’ll be enemies, reminding him that they are a Shinigami and Quincy. Ichigo himself gets off early and walks back home to the family clinic. While flying back, Kisuke and Yoruichi talk about the future war. They both realize the battle isn't over and very soon, he and the other Shinigami will have to rely on Ichigo's group and their strengths more then ever.
As soon as Ichigo enters home, Isshin Kurosaki greets him with a "daddy's crazy screw in midair," but was blocked by Ichigo. He then comments that nothing has changed since he left and their family skirmish starts again.
Ichigo goes up to his room and is speechless to see that Kon has been destroyed by Yuzu Kurosaki. Kon attacks Ichigo, asking if he's looking down on him and Ichigo tells him he just didn't know what to say, which Kon counters as him trying to suppress his true feelings. Ichigo decides to bring Ishida over to get him fixed up and is about to leave until he realizes he still has his mother's talisman that his father, Isshin, gave him. He goes over to his father and attempts to give it back, but Isshin doesn't allow it and sews the talisman onto Ichigo's school uniform. As they/re fighting each other, Yuzu tells Ichigo that the bus for school is coming soon and Ichigo vows to get his father for this after school.
Ichigo on his way to class is confronted by Keigo Asano, who happily screams out Ichigo's name and runs towards him, but Ichigo simply punches him in the face and says hi to Keigo. Ichigo then says hi to Mizuiro Kojima and continues walking to his class.
When he gets into class, Orihime, Chad, and Ishida greet him. Keigo, confused, asks Ichigo why it seems like they are all friends now and fears that he's going to become "the odd man out". All of a sudden, Chizuru Honshō hugs Orihime and Tatsuki Arisawa punches her away. Ichigo says hi to Tatsuki and she asks him where he was all summer until something catches her interest. Ichigo thinks it's the talisman sewed on his uniform, but Tatsuki corrects him and asks what the "skull looking thing" is (referring to his Substitute Shinigami Badge). Ichigo, surprised, asks if she can see the badge, but their conversation is interrupted by their teacher, Misato. She looks to see if everyone's in class and tells them a new transfer student is coming in today. While this is happening Ichigo continues wondering how Tatsuki can see his Substitute Shinigami Badge. All of a sudden the badge goes off and Chad asks if it's a Hollow. Misato goes out to get the new transfer student, but he isn't there. Ichigo then runs out along with Orihime and Chad claiming they have to go to the bathroom. As this is happening, Tatsuki looks out the classroom window and sees Ichigo running outside in his Shinigami clothes.
Ichigo defeats the Hollow easily and he tells Chad and Orihime that they didn't need to sneak out of school as well. He then realizes that Ishida hadn't come with them and asks why. Orihime tells him that Ishida probably doesn't want anyone knowing the reason why and Ichigo says she shouldn't have said anything then. Orihime decides to pretend not to know anything and Ichigo is dumbfounded by this. While this is happening, a man is seen in the air upside down and is interested in Ichigo.
A new transfer student named Shinji Hirako arrives in Ichigo's class.
After having been repaired and "modified" by Uryū Ishida, Kon shows his dissatisfaction towards his new design by starting an argument with Ishida about what the latter views as his "personal touch". Ishida's modification includes sewing frilly laces around Kon's head, as well as adding a Quincy cross design across the back of his head. After Ishida restores Kon to his former design, he begins to leave the Kurosaki household, only to be stopped by Ichigo. Ichigo was about to question Uryū about the loss of his Quincy powers. However, before he mentions the topic, Ichigo decides to avoid the conversation altogether, believing that Ishida would not want anyone else to find out. Ishida then continues to leave the Kurosaki household, at which point Ichigo confirms to himself that Ishida has, indeed, lost all of his Quincy powers.
The next morning, a new transfer student arrives in Ichigo's class, who introduces himself as Shinji Hirako. When introducing himself to the class, he writes his name in reverse, claiming that he's pretty good at writing things backwards. While Shinji is introducing himself to his new classmates, Ichigo is still thinking to himself about Uryū, about how he heard from Captain Ukitake about Ishida's fight with Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi, and that was most definitely the cause of the loss of Uryū's Quincy powers. Ichigo then proceeds to blame himself, as he was the one who took Uryū to the Soul Society. Just as Orihime turns around to look at Ichigo, Shinji barges in and sits next to him. After a very brief introduction, Ichigo's Substitute Badge starts glowing, indicating a Hollow presence in Karakura Town. Ichigo flees from the classroom, claiming he needs the bathroom again. Chad excuses his leave to Shinji, who then claims that's "just how he imagined him to be".
That night, an uninterested Ichigo and Kon are arguing about the latter's freedom. Just as Ichigo tells Kon to shut up, his badge once again begins to flash. Ichigo allows a rather pleased Kon to take care of his body, and jumps out of his bedroom window into the darkness of the night.
Just after Ichigo vanquishes the Hollow, he hears a loud shout, coming from Rukia's replacement in Karakura Town, Zennosuke Kurumadani. Ichigo introduces himself with his Substitutes badge, to which Kurumadani claims he has never even heard of a Substitute Badge. Before the two Soul Reapers can continue their discussion, Shinji Hirako, the transfer student from that morning, comes up behind Ichigo, complete with a Zanpakutō in his hand. Shinji then swings his Zanpakutō towards Ichigo, who subsequently blocks it. After Ichigo questions Shinji's true identity, Shinji tells him not to make such a ruckus. Hirako continues that with Ichigo's Reiatsu, 'others' will notice him. Before Ichigo begins his rebuttal, a large Hollow-like creature appears behind Ishida, who was wandering the streets. Ishida immediately becomes aware of the Hollow's presence. Kon, in Ichigo's body, also becomes aware of something behind him; however, he just brushes it off as nothing, continuing his mischievous deeds. However, a large hand, followed by what looks like a larger version of Grand Fisher, complete with a sword, comes out from behind Kon.
Ishida is attacked by a Hollow who is able to tear an opening through dimensions and he questions if it's a Menos Grande.
Kon, in Ichigo's body, is attacked by someone. He looks to see who it is and realizes it's the Grand Fisher.
Yoruichi is shown with Urahara and shows concern as to what's happening.
Ichigo blocks an attack from Shinji and Kurumadani looks on in shock at their monstrous spiritual pressure. Shinji mocks Ichigo, since Hollows are attacking because he can't control his spiritual pressure. Ichigo asks who he is, but he doesn't answer. He tells Shinji that he's impolite and questions why he even cares about who he is. Shinji decides to show why by bringing out a Hollow mask and asks Ichigo if he realizes what he is, since he has a Hollow mask and a Zanpakutō. He then states that he's a Shinigami who's crossed over into the realm of Hollows, a Visored, and asks Ichigo if he'll join them.
Ishida runs from the Hollow and decides to use silver tubes, or Gintō, to fight him, since he lost his Quincy powers. He uses Heizen which destroys the Hollow's left arm. While this is happening, Ishida has an inner monologue about storing spiritual energy in silver tubes during his breaks in training, which he can use to do significant damage to Hollows. However, the Hollow regrows its arm and Ishida attempts to use another technique, until he realizes the Hollows upper body disappeared. The upper body attacks Ishida from behind and sees the bottom half is alive as well and realizes they were two separate Hollows to begin with. All of a sudden, the Hollows attacking Ishida are hurt by someone from behind. He tells Ishida that that was unsightly of him. Ishida looks to see who it is and becomes shocked to find out who saved him.
The true identifies of Ishida and Ichigo's fathers are revealed.
The man who saved Uryū berates him for being clumsy, as the stunned Uryū calls the man Ryūken Ishida. Ryūken further berates Uryū for calling his father by his given name and states that Uryū hasn't changed. When the Menos Hollow tries to attack, Ryūken easily disposes of it, telling Uryū that instant regeneration is not an issue if you kill them before they can use it. Uryū demands to know what is going on and asks why Ryūken has Quincy powers when he despises the Quincy. Uryū claims that he thought Ryūken gave up his Quincy powers. Ryūken calls Uryū a fool and says he chose his words very carefully. Ryūken reminds Uryū that he said, "I am not interested in the Quincy and you don't have the talent for it anyway." He then says that his powers are a lot harder to get rid of than the feeble ones Uryū lost in Soul Society. Claiming that whether he is interested or not, he is the Last Quincy, who inherited the title from Sōken Ishida.
Ishida is stunned by this revelation, but before he can say anything the other Hollow resumes its attack, but is quickly dispatched by Ryūken. Ryūken then berates Uryū for going to Soul Society before he was ready and losing the feeble powers he did possess. However, Ryūken tells Uryū that he can restore Uryū's power, but on one condition: He can never involve himself with Shinigami ever again.
Elsewhere, Kon tries to outrun Grand Fisher, as the latter demands why "Ichigo" is running away and demands that he become a Shinigami and fight him. Kon still tries to evade and run away, but is caught by the Grand Fisher, who declares that he has given "Ichigo" plenty of time to turn into a Shinigami, now he has lost his patience and will crush him while he is still in Human form. With this he smashes Kon into the ground, damaging his legs. Suddenly, out of nowhere, the protective charm Isshin gave Ichigo appears and forms a barrier around Kon that stops Grand Fisher from grabbing and crushing him. As Kon wonders what's going on, Isshin appears in Shinigami form and reminds Kon that he told him to keep that charm with him always. He then tells Grand Fisher that Ichigo is a little busy and asks Grand Fisher to play with him instead.
Isshin introduces himself to Grand Fisher. Shinji and Ichigo sense an unbelievably strong Reiatsu. Shinji wonders whose Reiatsu is he sensing. Ichigo runs away, refusing Shinji's offer, telling him that he's a Shinigami, not one of them. After Ichigo left, Shinji calls someone named Hiyori Sarugaki to inform them that he has failed the mission, but also tells them that they should just wait patiently.
Isshin tells Grand Fisher that he is Ichigo's father. Then he tells Kon to take the charm. Kon asks him when did he know that he wasn't Ichigo, which Isshin answers that from the beginning, when he saw Kon entering Ichigo's body for the first time. Grand Fisher realizes that Ichigo is the son of a Shinigami and therefore the real thing, and he notes how he finally understands how he lost to him. He also states that he has no interest in Isshin and that he only came to kill Ichigo and orders Isshin to hand him over. Isshin, however, reveals that he does not know where Ichigo is because Ichigo is no longer a kid. He then explains that even if Grand Fisher has no interest in him, he himself came to kill Grand Fisher. Grand Fisher only begins to laugh and questions if they believe that he is nothing, but a regular Hollow and transforms, growing in stature. A shocked Kon says that he is larger than a Menos Grande, which Grand Fisher takes as an insult. Isshin reveals that he is an Arrancar, a Hollow who had removed his mask to gain Shinigami powers. Grand Fisher draws his Zanpakutō, saying that the size of a sword shows the amount of power someone may have and says that Isshin cannot win with his twig sized sword. Isshin smiles and challenges Grand Fisher to give it a try and draws his own Zanpakutō and the two clash. He kills the Arrancar with a single cut from his sword.
Isshin states that all captain-level Shinigami know how to compress their Zanpakutō; otherwise all captains of the Soul Society would be swinging around swords the size of skyscrapers, much like Grand Fisher was doing and tells him to remember to never to judge an opponent by the size of their Zanpakutō. He then calls him a kid and says that he should not talk about a Shinigami's strength until he could understand that.