Character NAME: Ukitake Jyuushiro Character FANDOM: Bleach Character JOURNAL:thirteenth
Point in CANON: The start of the Fake Karakura Town Arc - before any fighting takes place.
Main LOSS: The memory of Shiba Kaien. Kaien was Ukitake's lieutenant, who he loved much like a son, and after he was killed by a Hollow he was never replaced. Ukitake had false memories implanted to replace Kaien - he now believes he has always had two third seats instead of a lieutenant, he thinks this decision was made due to the amount of time he has to take off because of his illness, and two third seats would be able to keep up with the paperwork and duties better than one lieutenant.
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Ukitake is a kind and generous man who presides over his squad as though a father over his children, he is shown as caring for all those placed under his care, right down to the unseated officers. His lieutenant, Shiba Kaien, was almost as a son to him and his death devastated Ukitake so much that he could never find a replacement.
He is an honourable man who is greatly respected by all who know him for his unwavering sense of justice, even choosing to break laws to honour his beliefs. This is shown when he helps Shunsui try to rescue Rukia from her execution, even going to far as to fight the Captain-Commander.
Ukitake lives his life by a personal philosophy – that there is a fight for life and a fight for pride, and it is intrinsically important to know the difference and respect it. He believes that the pride a person holds in their soul should never be taken lightly, as by crushing that pride, even if the end result was to help them, would take away a part of what made them who they were. This is shown clearly when he refuses to let Rukia help Kaien defeat the hollow that killed his wife, despite the fact that were they both to step in, Kaien’s life might have been saved.
Ukitake is often shown as having quite a dorky sense of humour, often coming up with silly gift ideas to lavish on the child-like captain, Hitsugaya, in a fatherly manner. He is friendly to everyone, with a big heart and will often care too much, to the point where he pushes himself too far for the sake of others.
It was raining.
Not that Ukitake noticed, even though his haori and shihakushou were soaked through. Small specks of blood still stained his lips and Sougyo no Kotowari was still bared. He should have sheathed his zanpakutou before walking back to the Seireitei, but the thought had never even crossed his mind.
He was blank. Numb. Empty.
He had made sure Rukia was seen to first, holding himself together long enough to make sure she got to Fourth Division, but he refused to stay there himself. They tried to make him, wondering what had transpired between the white-haired captain and his subordinate out in the rain, but he had quietly refused all offers of help and left, sword still dragging along the ground and stirring up small rivulets of water.
A fight for life and a fight for pride... A mantra he had lived his whole life by, his pride one of the most important things to him. He battled for his own honour and pride every day, combating the image that it would be so easy for him to fall to, the sickly captain – useless for duty and his position. That battle was hard fought, and had it’s victories and losses, but it had taught him the value of a man’s honour, and never to interfere in another’s fight for pride.
This had been a fight for pride; he knew that, he really did. He had said those words to Rukia even as he held her back, stopping both of them from interfering. But even so, Kaien had still lost his life this night and it weighed on him that he had stood back and allowed it to happen.