I am not uncaring—expressions of care are, however, difficult.
Tsubine doesn't want to show his emotions. It's definitely not that he can't—his temper when unleashed is a beast. But if he went around expressing
himself all the time, the moments he did express what he felt wouldn't be worth anything. While he may express amusement or displeasure, it's never enough to be called superlatives like "jubilant" or "revulsion." For him to go that far, it's usually an extreme to the point of his child being born or coming across a days-old bloated corpse. He keeps his cool for multiple other reasons as well. The main one, besides the one mentioned above, is that if he doesn't stay calm—especially in dire straits—who else could he rely on to do the same?
Tsubine tries to keep himself as calm as can be, but the fact is the guy cares a lot more he lets on. That isn't to say he's a secret giver-to-charity, nor does he own an off-the-books rescue shelter for lost animals. But if he sees a kid is crying, he actually thinks about why that kid might be crying. He may not act, but not acting doesn't mean not caring in his mind. He's a tall guy in a suit with a huge scar across his face. Whatever the kid was crying about will most likely be compounded by the scary man trying to talk to him. Tsubine, while in a gigai, was questioned by multiple police officers at various points in his life because he was randomly talking to children who were upset—and passers-by thought the children were upset because of him.
Tsubine can get flustered rather easily by the people who know him well enough to point out when he actually is caring for something. His friends over the years have picked at him when he tries to nonchallantly assist people in need. He's not a big softie, nor is he a jerk with a heart of gold. He's more like a hardass with a copper heart. It's not a bad heart, but it's definitely not as good as a gold one. But damn is it easy to get it stimulated at first.
A man's wit is only as clever as the chasm between him and his opponent is wide.
Due to his stoicism, Tsubine usually voices displeasure or disappointment with witticisms. They may be obscure or dry, but that is his primary form of aknowledging someone else's failure. When he was a patrol officer in the Gotei 13, he'd apprehend repeat criminals who tried to deny charges with the same quip: "I believe you less than I believe in a Hollow's heart." Needless to say, that isn't very much trust. Tsubine will gladly insult someone with a quip rather than a direct "you're an idiot." If Tsubine flatly tells someone they are intellectually challenged or are a disappointment, the severity of their misdeeds is astronomical.
But Tsubine's humor is not always a negative thing, though negativity is more common in it than positivity. To those that he's close to, he'll poke at previous failures just to try to get a laugh from them. Sometimes he'll even laugh at these himself. Humor may not be his strongest suit, but he does think that he is more funny than he is unfunny. His sense of humor goes on to be somewhat dry and dull, leading themselves to short statements and twisting of words more than actual jokes.
One's pride is only as good as what they can back it up with.
If there's something that people know about Tsubine besides his sword skill, it's that he has an ego. When you factor in his sword skill into his ego, most recognize that it's a hard-won pride. He holds himself above most not just for his capabilities, but his accomplishments as well. Tsubine has done more than most people have in a similar timeframe, though most of his work he will admit came out of necessity rather than desire.
The man aknowledges his good traits while either shrugging off or re-tooling (or rather, re-wording) his negative ones. He doesn't admit he's perfect—and will emphasize heavily that he isn't. But damn if it doesn't seem like he believes he might be. He calls himself an "epitome" of various things—a swordsman mainly. The one negative thing he freely admits to not doing well is his cooking. He has given up trying to hide that trait, so he plays off of it. He denies it being a secret way for him to appear helpless at home so he can win a woman over with pity, but some still speculate that's the case.
Of all things, romance and cooking have been my two biggest failures.
To continue off of the previous section, Tsubine vehemently denies that because he feels that the best way to win a woman over is with either charm or daring deeds of heroism or something of the sort. Needless to say, he barely has charm—his romance tips are from perhaps the worst sources. Although he has not been with many women, Tsubine put exceptional amounts of effort into their relationship. Because of his pride, he doesn't ask other people on what to do. Oh no, he consults romance novels. However, he chooses those with interesting back summaries. These usually are, unfortunately, the kind you would pick up at an airport book rack. They're bad. People read these for the laughs—except for Tsubine. He reads them for genuine assistance.
Tsubine dislikes speaking of what happened with the women he's been with. It was, to be blunt, entirely unpleasant at the end. He's the type of possessive that borders unhealthy. He's violent to others that try to, in his mind, steal his
woman away. That's something about him that is outdated—that when he is with someone romantically, they belong to one another and no one else—but he has and will continue to refuse to change that. If someone cannot handle that, then they are not the woman for him.
A sword is the best tool not just for battle, but also for self-reflection.
Tsubine is, like many people nowadays, someone who has romanticized the use of a sword. he believes that any form of martial art is a great way to get int touch with one's self. Learning how to fight with a weapon is even better. A sword is a great balance between greater distance for safety and lower distance for the personal connections that form during fighting another. The only weapon Tsubine doesn't approve of is the kind that doesn't require personal usage. Automatic defenses are lazy and the epitome of a sign of weakness. In a grand scale, it shows that generals do not trust their soldiers to react properly. It is their own failures which gives way to the lack of humanism in conflict.
That is something that makes Tsubine take a fight extremely seriously. He understands that everyone he fights has a life. Well, most everyone. Therre are some creatures whose lives are so inconsequential and more bestial that it becomes hard to distinguish if they can be called truly sentient or not. Most Hollows and Demons fall under that category. The sword allows him to get close enough to an opponent to understand some of what drives them and to determine if they are truly intelligent life or not. He has fought everything from Hollows to Shinigami to soulless husks of beings. He has enough experience to understand the difference between something that acts upon desires and something that acts upon instinct alone.
Beyond understanding an opponent, Tsubine finds the sword a great tool for introspection. A wrong slip with a sword upon unsheathing can cause serious wounds. The same can happen with a knife or a dagger—and are perhaps more common with those. Thus a sword is safer than they are. But the most that might happen with a spear or other polearm would be tripping on the haft—barring extraordinary circumstances. Thus the sword is more dangerous than those weapons. This gives the sword a great balance of safety and danger while still being effective. Each person usually chooses a sword that fits their own preference. Some might like the light stabs of tri-bladed swords while others might like the heavy slashes of single-bladed ones.
One's choice of sword imparts a great deal of insight towards how someone operates. Using the two examples, the light stabber is one who would not win in a contest of strenght, but perhaps one of endurance or of speed. They are probably a quick thinker and quicker to react. The one with the heavy blade is one who would rather finish a fight fast and dirty. They are ones who value—perhaps overvalue—their own strength and are confident enough in themselves to feel that a limited amount of swings will win a contest. Neither are wrong choices, but they do have many ups and downs into how they will perform in combat.
Order may not be a natural state, but it is the perfect state.
Tsubine has his way of doing things. He is strangely predictable and deviations make him paranoid and anxious. If he has t otake an alternative route home because of unannounced road construction, he assumes it's a trap—funneling as they call it. Tsubine does not let others touch his things willingly. His swords are exceptionally off-limits and touching them has ruined multiple friendships in the past. It is not recommended to do so. his way of doing things is the only right way—his order is a perfect order for him. While this does speak to his ego, it's also just what he expects. He likes his clothes washed a certain way, his towels folded to an exact, and an exact number of ice cubes in his drinks. Any more, he takes out. Any less, he asks for enough to match that number. He does not ask for much from other people—but what he asks he expects to be followed to the letter.
If you go to his abode, it is always decorated in a similar way. Things may change—and if they do, it is an entire overhaul of the layout and not just simply getting new paint on the walls—but there is a pattern to it all. There are always three chairs set out permenantly at a small dining table, and always just a couch and reclining chair. His bed is always a four-post one large enough for him and one other. He never picks vibrant or pastel colors for anything. Pink and purple, or at least certain shades of them, are colors he would tolerate but as a single man, he does not feel the need to use either of them.
A liar is one who claims I alone do strange things.
Tsubine is the type to look someone in the eyes and tell them "go ahead and tell someone, they won't believe you." he does strange things, seemingly on a whim. He has bad direction sense, so he's more lost than found. He's known to leave hours before an appointment because he knows he'll get lost. It isn't because he's distracted, but rather that obstacles annoy him and his choice of routes seems to change based on how long he feels like a certain direction will take him to get to his destination. These detours are routinely found out by him when he realizes he might not even be in the right town. "Ah, right, I'm lost" is a common motto of his before turning back the way he came as if nothing had been said.
However, the strangest quirk of Tsubine's goes to his ego. He is slightly taller than most people. He stands at 6'3 without his boots, which give him about an extra three-quarters of an inch in height due to them being thick-soled. Tsubine, usually during casual conversation, will give a single pat on the head when he feels someone shorter than him has done something admirable or said something he thinks is correct. This usually happens once per conversation, but it can occur more than once if the other person is being profound. The odd thing about these headpats is that they are given only to people who are six inches shorter than him or more. For every 6 inches shorter than the initial 6 inches, they get an additional headpat—thus someone at 5'3 would get 2 headpats, someone at 4'9 would get 3, etc. He does this with a stoic face and does not give any warning. The only person to get an exception to this is Lilith Antonovich—to whom he gives a headpat to her simply to annoy her.