200. Night of Sledgehammer
201. Wind & Snowbound
202. Mala Suerte!
203. Mala Suerte!2 "El Monstruo"
204. Mala Suerte!3 "Monstruo Sangriento"
205. Mala Suerte!4 [Tempestad de la Lucha]
0.side-A the sand
0.side-B the rotator
198. The Icecold Discord
200. Night of Sledgehammer
201. Wind & Snowbound
202. ¡Mala Suerte!
203. ¡Mala Suerte! 2 (El Monstruo)
204. ¡Mala Suerte! 3 (Monstruo Sangrieta)
205. ¡Mala Suerte! 4 (Tempestad de La Lucha)
0. Side-A The Sand
0. Side-B The Rotator
MALA SUERTE! is the twenty-third volume of the Bleach manga series.
Ulquiorra tells Aizen what happened in the Human World and Grimmjow decides to head to the Human World himself.
Ulquiorra shows what he saw in the Human World to the other Arrancar. When he tells Aizen that he finds Ichigo isn't worth killing, Grimmjow interrupts and tells Ulquiorra that he's weak. If it was him, he would have killed them all with one attack. Then he makes fun of Yammy, who got all beaten up. Ulquiorra stops them when they are about to fight and explains to Grimmjow that what Aizen is observing is not Ichigo at his current state, but his rate of growth. However, right now it's disproportionately unstable due in part to its immensity. What he gathered was if they were to leave him alone, he might just destroy himself or maybe even become one of their pawns. That's why they returned without killing him. When Grimmjow asks him what he is going to do if Ichigo's power grows even larger than he has calculated and he ends up getting in their way, Ulquiorra states that he will simply finish him. Aizen interrupts and tells Ulquiorra that apart from what his brother says, he's impressed with Ulquiorra's work. Grimmjow doesn't seem to be happy about that.
At Ichigo's house, Rangiku and Renji are examining Kon. Ichigo asks them when they are heading back, which Renji says that not until the Arrancar threat is over. Ichigo then tells them that they can't stay in his house like a bunch of free loaders. Rangiku asks Ichigo what good he is. Then she tries to trick Ichigo to let them stay by unbuttoning her shirt, but Ichigo covers his eyes, saying that he'll never give in to temptation, although he's still peeping. Then Rangiku decides that she will stay at Orihime's place, which makes Kon start dreaming about a fertile garden, and rushes at Rangiku, but is beaten up as usual. Hitsugaya comes with her too. Yumichika and Ikkaku go out to look for a place for themselves, and Renji says that he will stay at Urahara's place, because he has something to ask him. Ichigo then asks Rukia where she is going to stay. Rukia tells him that she can't stay anywhere but in his house, but Ichigo declines that and tells her to go away since his family already saw her.
Yumichika asks Ikkaku if he smells that Hollow scent, which Ikkaku says to just leave it be, since it won't do anything with so many Shinigami around. Yumichika agrees, but thinks that there's something off with that scent.
Tatsuki worries about the incident with the Shinigami at school earlier.
Orihime is telling her brother that Ichigo is back to normal, and she is jealous of Rukia.
Chad is still being healed by Orihime's "Shun Shun Rikka" at his house.
On their way home, Keigo is still talking to Mizuiro, but he suddenly sees a Hollow flying in the sky. Mizuiro calls him "Asano-san" and tells him that he's talking to himself again. And when Keigo says that there's a huge beast in the sky, he tells Keigo that he's got quite an imagination.
A Garganta opens in the sky, and Grimmjow emerges.
Rangiku cheers up Orihime and Grimmjow and his group decide to kill anyone with spiritual pressure in Karakura Town.
Rukia manages to persuade Ichigo's family to let her stay at their house.
When Rangiku comes to Orihime and asks to stay for a while, Orihime says yes, and that makes Rangiku almost smother her. Then she tells Hitsugaya, who is sitting on the roof, that if he has nothing else planned today then it's a great escape. Rangiku then borrows Orihime's bath. She asks Orihime what's off with her. Orihime tells her that Rukia is incredible. She lifted Ichigo's spirit up in just one go. She says it's a great thing, but it was something she couldn't do, and envies Rukia because of that. The chemistry Rukia has with Ichigo, if only she could do something like that. Orihime then begins to cry. Rangiku then gets out of the bath, tickles Orihime, and calls her a "childish fool". She tells Orihime that Ichigo needs her as much as he needs Rukia. Without the bond she has with him, there's no way he can remain as he is. Orihime cries even more and Rangiku hugs her.
Grimmjow's group has arrived. They notice that there are several entities in the area that are showing a noticeable Reiatsu, but they were not included in Ulquiorra's report. Then they start searching for Reiatsu. Grimmjow says that there are more of them, so there must be reinforcements. He tells the others to be careful, because this operation might get complicated. He then orders his fellow Arrancar to kill anyone with even a glimmer of Reiatsu.
Rukia is surprised that she's going to sleep in Karin and Yuzu's room and tells Ichigo that she had planned to sleep in his closet again. Ichigo tells her that she should bug his dad instead and Rukia complains that she brought a bunch of things to redecorate the closet. Ichigo tells her that she shouldn't act like this is a hotel.
Renji is shown sitting in front of the Urahara shop and Jinta looks outside and sees him. He tells Urahara that Renji is still outside and Urahara is confused as to why a lieutenant would be sent to his shop.
Ikkaku asks Yumichika if "these things" are a bit off and Yumichika asks him what he means. He tells him that it's the onigiri he got from a shop, and is confused as to how they could be restocked each day and be made so well and comes to the conclusion that something is controlling the shop from the shadows. Yumichika tells him that he was thinking the exact same thing.
Rangiku is shown to be satisfied with a meal she ate that Orihime prepared. Orihime is surprised by this and Rangiku states that while the food may look weird, it tastes really good. Orihime is happy by this statement, as everyone else decides to pass a chance to eat her meals. She then gets ice cream for the both of them and they take a scoop at the same time satisfied with it. Hitsugaya hears their conversation on the roof and states that he's hungry.
Grimmjow tells his group that everyone's been accounted for and not to let a single person escape. They all rush in different directions.
Ichigo senses the Reiatsu and remembers it from the Arrancar that attacked before and Rukia states that 6 of them are attacking now. Ichigo asks if they're heading this way and she says that they're just going at anyone with some measure of power. She then realizes that out of everyone with some power in the town, the one in the most danger is Chad and that an Arrancar is already at his location.
Ikkaku senses an Arrancar and he goes to where it is along with Yumichika.
Hitsugaya goes into his Shinigami form and tells the Mod-Soul in his body to go hide. Rangiku goes on top of the roof in her Shinigami form as well to assist her captain and Hitsugaya asks what she did with Orihime. Rangiku tells him that she asked her to look after her Gigai so she won't enter the battle. Hitsugaya tells her to prepare for battle as the Arrancar have arrived. Two Arrancar appear before them, one fat and one skinny. The skinny one asks Hitsugaya who he is and immediately attacks him. He introduces himself as the Undécimo Arrancar, Shawlong Koufang and Hitsugaya introduces himself as well. Shawlong states that he hit the jackpot to have found a captain. Hitsugaya counters by saying that he's picked the unluckiest lot.
Despite his injuries, Chad leaves the place he's being healed at and ignores the nurse's warnings. However, he is confronted by an Arrancar who tells him he's lost and attempts to stab his chest. Before he can, his hand is caught by Ichigo, who tells him that the winner is determined after the actual fight. The Arrancar says that it doesn't matter who is battling and that everyone here will lose.
Ikkaku and Yumichika reach the Arrancar they sensed before, while an Arrancar confronts Renji.
The Arrancar removes his grabbed hand from Ichigo and Chad realizes that he would've died if Ichigo was a second slower. Ichigo tells Chad to leave it to him and Chad runs away. As he's running, he spots Rukia, who tells him that she's glad that he's okay, but he simply runs past, ignoring her. Chad thinks to himself that he won't be able to watch Ichigo's back anymore and that he can't help him.
The Arrancar tells Ichigo that he would've had fun if he was able to kill him. All of a sudden, Rukia appears behind them and asks Ichigo what he told Chad. Ichigo says he told him to step back and Rukia decides to tell Ichigo to so as well. She pulls out a Chappy dispenser and eats the modified soul in it. While she does this she tells Ichigo that he's already exceeded his strength when he fought the other Arrancar and to leave this to her, since he can lose control again if the situation turns bad. She then appears in her Shinigami form and Ichigo is shocked that she got her powers back. She explains that since she got out of Urahara's Gigai, it would only be a matter of time until she returned to her normal self. All of a sudden, Rukia's Gigai attacks Ichigo, saying that she's going to hold him down and Rukia explains that this is the Mod-Soul she wanted to buy originally instead of Kon, since Chappy is the most popular Mod-Soul around. Ichigo states that he's glad that he got Kon instead and Chappy tells him he's cruel. The Arrancar decides to begin the battle and attacks Rukia. As they're battling he introduces himself as the Dieciséis Arrancar, Di Roy Rinker and Rukia begins to introduce herself as well. However, Di Roy tells her to stop since they're all going to be eliminated anyway and Rukia states that he should at least know the name of her Zanpakutō. She then releases her Zanpakutō, Sode no Shirayuki, and Di Roy notes that her Zanpakutō has become completely white. Rukia then uses a technique called Some no mai, Tsukishiro. A circle of ice forms under them and Di Roy's legs become frozen. He breaks out of it though and goes up into the air claiming that she won't be able to do anything with an attack that only effects the ground. However, the circle of ice becomes a beam of ice that shoots up into the sky and completely freezes Di Roy. As the ice begins to crack, Rukia explains that anything within its circle of influence will not be able to get away from its grasp. The ice is then destroyed, killing Di Roy, and fragments of the ice begin to fall to the ground.
Ichigo tries fighting off Chappy, who's holding him down, but Chappy begins breaking his arm. They start arguing until Rukia comes over, asking Ichigo what he's doing. Ichigo asks if she defeated the Arrancar and she says that if she didn't, there would be no reason to have come back. Ichigo then notices Rukia's Zanpakutō and she explains that Sode no Shirayuki is an ice type that is completely white and is the most beautiful Zanpakutō in all of Soul Society. Chappy tells Ichigo that Rukia has the ability to become a seated officer, but "he" talked with the other captains to stop her from becoming one since it would be too dangerous. Ichigo asks who it was and Chappy says that it was Byakuya. Ichigo then asks Chappy to get off of him and they start fighting again. Rukia says that she's glad the fight went quick, but is interrupted when she senses another Arrancar's Reiatsu approaching them. Ichigo and Rukia look to see who it is and Grimmjow tells them he will kill them both. He then introduces himself as the Sexta Espada and tells them to remember his name.
Shawlong realizes that Di Roy was killed.
The Arrancar that has confronted Renji states that Di Roy was scum and that he really was nothing more than a nuisance even with Aizen's gift.
The Arrancar that Ikkaku and Yumichika have confronted claims that Di Roy didn't even deserve to be called an Arrancar and the person that fought him was lucky. He then tells them they are unlucky to have run into him.
Keigo sees an explosion in the town and writes it off as some troublemakers. He then complains about having to get juice and begins wondering about the explosion again. He states that recently, he's been seeing weird things and that he saw a "huge flying monster" before. All of a sudden, Kurumadani runs by and notes that he was the one who destroyed the flying monster. He believes him to be an actor and asks him if he's getting something on camera again. He just runs by though and Keigo wonders if he will be on cable. Immediately after this, a huge explosion happens in front of Keigo and when the dust clears, Ikkaku is shown with blood running down his head. Keigo asks him why he's injured and with a real sword now, but Ikkaku ignores his question and recognizes him as the one from Ichigo's school. The Arrancar takes this opportunity to attack the distracted Ikkaku and sends him crashing near Keigo, and believes he's beaten the Shinigami. Keigo wonders who they are and Ikkaku gets up and asks if he could stay at his place tonight. Keigo is frightened by this and Ikkaku tells him that since he's in a situation where he can get killed, he will protect him if he lets him stay at his place. Keigo eventually agrees and Ikkaku looks over at the Arrancar and asks for his name. He says that he's the Trece Arrancar, but stops there since anymore would be wasteful and says to just think of him as the one who will rip him apart. Ikkaku tells him it's courtesy to introduce yourself by name and rank for the person you're about to kill since they would at least know your name before they die. Ikkaku then introduces himself and says that he kills any lowlifes who ignore this etiquette.
Ikkaku and the Arrancar begin battling and the Arrancar states that he will never be able to break through his Hierro and explains that Hierro is an Arrancar's armor. Ikkaku tries attacking him in a different way, but the blow is blocked and Ikkaku notes that he's able to block without sliding his arm. The Arrancar tells Ikkaku that it's a shame that he isn't releasing his Zanpakutō and Ikkaku counters by telling him he's in the need of a release.
Keigo looks on in shock and Yumichika goes over to where he is and asks if he's been listening at all. He says that Ikkaku's the second strongest man in the eleventh division and the most powerful in Soul Society. Keigo recognizes him from earlier as well and asks him if he's going to help out. Yumichika tells him that he doesn't get it and states that helping Ikkaku would ruin his pleasure of battle. Keigo asks if he's sure he can win and Yumichika tells him that if he loses then "so be it".
The two of them begin battling again and the Arrancar thinks to himself that for all of his complex movements, they are easy to read through, since Ikkaku always lunges with his Zanpakutō from his left and defends with the sheath on his right. The Arrancar, believing he's seen through Ikkaku, comes up with a plan to easily win, but is caught off guard when Ikkaku switches the placement of his Zanpakutō and sheath. The Arrancar gets a huge scar across his face and Ikkaku says that he wanted to chop his head off. The Arrancar thinks to himself that Ikkaku's way of fighting is full of holes and believes that he is simply thinking of this fight as a game. The Arrancar decides to make him take this fight more seriously and Ikkaku begins warming up for battle again, claiming that he can now read his movements. He states that in 5 or 6 attacks, he will be forced to release his Zanpakutō and the Arrancar tells him it doesn't matter who releases their Zanpakutō first. Ikkaku asks him if he's finally recognizing his power and the Arrancar tells him he should be cowering in fear at his strength and puts his fingers on the top of his Zanpakutō. He releases his Zanpakutō and Ikkaku is shown shocked at what has now happened. The Arrancar is then shown in a completely new form and now has no Zanpakutō. The Arrancar decides to introduce himself as Edrad Liones.
Ichigo meets Grimmjow as Ikkaku continues his fight with Edrad.
Rukia is stunned by Grimmjow's Reiatsu and wonders if he is truly an Arrancar like Di Roy Rinker, noting the vast difference between the two. Grimmjow asks which of them is stronger, causing Rukia to panic and tell Ichigo to run. Grimmjow takes the opportunity to put a hand through Rukia's abdomen, saying that he knew it wasn't her. As Grimmjow casually tosses Rukia's body to the ground, Ichigo charges him, much to the delight of Grimmjow.
Elsewhere, Edrad explains to Ikkaku that an Arrancar's Zanpakutō is completely different from that of a Shinigami. He explains that an Arrancar's Zanpakutō is the sealed form of the original Hollow powers of the Arrancar and when an Arrancar releases their Zanpakutō, they release their true power. Edrad explains that his true power is Volcanica. He then resumes his attack on Ikkaku.
Watching from the sidelines, Yumichika contacts Soul Society. He explains that the enemies' destructive powers are greater then expected and asks for spatial freeze around Ikkaku, Hitsugaya, Rangiku, Ichigo, Rukia, and Renji. He also instructs Soul Society to prepare a military funeral for Ikkaku. Edrad bashes Ikkaku around, forcing him to release his Shikai: Hōzukimaru, but Edrad quickly beats him back.
Eventually, Edrad punches down, meaning to crush Ikkaku. The dust clears to reveal that Ikkaku withstood Edrad's punch. Ikkaku says that he did not expect the power difference that exists between them. He says that that's fine. He then notes that the others will be busy with their own fights and won't notice. He then tells Edrad to watch closely and says one word, "Bankai".
As a whirlwind of power hides Ikkaku from view, Keigo wonders what's going on as Yumichika comments on how Ikkaku decided to use it. The stunned Edrad wonders if Ikkaku actually said Bankai. Ikkaku says that he did and reveals: Ryūmon Hōzukimaru. Edrad says he is impressed, but Ikkaku tells him not to mock him, saying that his Reiatsu is not yet at a level that would impress Edrad. Ikkaku tells Edrad to be impressed when he dies. With that he starts an onslaught of attacks that manage to cut Edrad's Volcanica. Edrad is surprised, but notes that Ikkaku's weapon was damaged as well. Edrad surmises that Ikkaku's Bankai is just a massive destructive force that does not augment his speed or even his defensive abilities. Edrad draws comfort from the fact that in a competition of raw destructive power, he should win, but then notices that Ikkaku's Reiatsu is increasing. Ikkaku explains that Hōzukimaru is not at full strength until the dragon crest is glowing completely red. The dragon crest powers up as Ikkaku exchanges blows with his opponent, but Ikkaku can also fill the crest up by spinning Ryūmon Hōzukimaru above his head. He does this to power it up fully. He then asks Edrad if he is ready. Edrad replies that he is. They clash in a massive explosion of power.
Ichigo asks for a blade so he can stop the wheel of destiny.
Ichigo is greeted in the morning by his family and offered breakfast. Later in school, Keigo asks if Ichigo has seen the latest Bad Shield movie. Ichigo is unsure what Keigo is talking about. Keigo says that a few days ago Ichigo told him that he really liked Bad Shield. Ichigo claims to have no memory of this — much to the mortification of Keigo, as Mizuiro takes an interest in the movie. Mizuiro then goes on about how great Bad Shield is, drawing the initially reluctant Keigo into a discussion about the show.
Meanwhile, Chizuru tries to convince Orihime that she is her ideal lover, but Tatsuki steps in and beats Chizuru up when the latter tries to molest Orihime. Orihime for her part notices Ichigo leaving and they exchange goodbyes and Uryū silently watches on.
On his way home, Ichigo stops where a ghost boy used to be, but finds nothing, but a bit of blood. The ghost of an old man tells Ichigo that the boy is gone. Ichigo comments that he brought a toy airplane for nothing and tries to give it to the ghost of the old man, who refuses. Ichigo notes that all he can do is see, talk, and touch ghosts, but he doesn't know what happens to them when they disappear. Ichigo goes on to note that sometimes they leave behinds spots of blood and a lingering smell of fear. Ichigo says that even though he can see them, he can't protect them.
Later on, Ichigo comforts the ghost of a small girl and promises her that he will return tomorrow. As he continues on his way home, he runs into Chad with whom he exchanges a warm gesture as Ichigo goes on to wish for a blade and power, imagining that the power to crush destiny looks like a blade that is swinging down.
Rukia receives an order posting her to the Human World, while Renji is promoted to lieutenant.
Co-3rd Seat Kiyone Kotetsu reassures Rukia that she is not being transferred, but rather being given a mission to the Human World. She reminds Rukia that she has been posted to the Human World shortly after joining the Thirteenth Division and becoming Kiyone's assistant. When Rukia does not remember this, co-3rd Seat Sentarō Kotsubaki mocks Kiyone and the two begin arguing. Ukitake enters the room and explains that Rukia will be assigned to a spiritual area at the center of Karakura Town. Ukitake tells her that it should not be difficult with her abilities. While the two Third Seats tell him he should be resting, Ukitake says he feels good today and says that, although the mission is only for a month, he thought Rukia would be worried and so wished to send her himself. Rukia bows in thanks, but Ukitake tells her not to be so formal and asks if she has told Byakuya. Rukia explains that she does not think Byakuya would be interested in such a minor thing, and she therefore does not intend to tell him. Ukitake offers to inform him on her behalf.
Hinamori informs Renji that he is being promoted from the Sixth Seat of the Eleventh Division to the lieutenant of the Sixth Division. After a moments hesitation, Renji formally bows and accepts her words. Hinamori tells him not to be so uptight. Ikkaku says it is good news and that Renji is one step closer to Captain Kuchiki. He says that it is about time he talks to Rukia, as being a lieutenant is not too lowly a position compared to the nobility. He tells Renji that his will has been strong for forty years and it is time for them to have the relationship they used to have. Izuru tells Renji to hurry, as Rukia is leaving for a mission to the Human World that afternoon. Renji, however, says it won't be official until the promotion ceremony in a month's time, so he will shock her when she returns by saying that he is a lieutenant.
The most secretive and influential group in Soul Society is revealed!
The Shinigami Women's Association meet at a conference hall with president Yachiru presiding, along with Nanao - her vice-president. The agenda for the day, as explained by Nanao, is the designing of a soul phone for female Shinigami. Even though the requirement is that the design must appeal to everybody, each of the female Shinigami have designed a phone that only suits themselves. Rangiku Matsumoto designed a phone that really sparkles which she wanted in either gold or purple because pink had been done to death. Isane Kotetsu wanted a phone that wouldn't break even when dropped from a height of over six feet (her height). Suì-Fēng wanted a phone with a bee body (that represented herself) and a cat head (that represented Yoruichi Shihōin). Nemu's design was blurred because it was too perverted. Once Nanao rejected all their designs, Yachiru steps in to submit her design — a bunny-shaped soul phone that's edible and made of chocolate, candy and gum. Yachiru also approves her own design without consultation with the others. The new phone is released, but no one likes it apart from Rukia.
It's been four years since I worked with my first editor, yet his is still the first name in my address book. I'm surprised just how little my social life has changed in the past four years. My resolution for this year is to make a new friend whose name will come before "Asada". -Tite Kubo
The Viz publication of this volume changed its title to "¡MALA SUERTE!".