Takehiko had been successful for the most part after his mission. But he'd returned much worse for it all. He'd performed above and beyond what one could expect. But even so, he laid in his room with a breathing mask. His body ached and using that Sokatsui had felt amazing. But his transformation and running wild. It felt like something was missing inside him. Who was that person who's hands wrapped around his throat? He couldn't recall a face or even an image. Arm and leg both wrapped up in casts. His eyes opening tiredly to see a figure. Red skinned visible to only he stood next to him. His hand ascended towards the mask now to remove it. Talking with it on was hard and nearly impossible. Slowly the large red hand rested on his. Moving it back to his chest and shaking his head. Akuma finally spoke exhaling softly. The generally angry expression of Akuma was quiet and even softened. "No, don't talk this time I want you just to listen. "
Takehiko studied that expression for several moments.
He couldn't tear his azure eyes from Akuma. He'd come alone not with prodding from Ruin. Something was bothering the hollow he'd been born with. Something beneath the surface and the Kuchiki boy could feel it. "Listen, I am not good at these things. Never have been nor will I ever be. "
Akuma said his glowing eyes looking down at him. He didn't see anger or sadness in them. But admiration for just how far Takehiko went. Resolve had been proven and up until this point. Akuma had been the representation of just anger for Takehiko. So it was strange to see his brother try to find words. "You fought valiantly Takehiko, with more hinderances then most would dream of. You walked into that place to save lives even at your body's peril. "
Akuma said while gesturing to his condition. Takehiko continued to sit silently breathing into the mask. His breathing didn't accelerate or decelerate. Merely remained stable as Akuma's eyes looked on at him. "No longer, do I want you fighting so recklessly. I want you to learn the powers of a vizard fully, I will help in whatever way I can."
Takehiko's expression was full of shock. Surely this figure didn't just tell him to use those powers. What had changed since previously when they met. Oh, sure he and Akuma worked together on occasion. As they did at that moment but not freely. The hollow lent bits of power to him and trained with him now and again. But this wasn't as simple as that. No Akuma wanted Takehiko to use his vizard powers instead of his shinigami ones. As they'd been failing him all his life. Those very powers had been costing him. Now instead of just coming to laugh at him, Takehiko was offered, nay demanded to use his instead. "I've watched this road you tread, it is one that has hurt you...too often. And instead of backing down and cowering in fear. You rise to the occasion of not caring about the damage she does to you. You....have my...respect."
Takehiko wished he could sit up and acknowledge him. He wished he could move his broken body. So many things right now poured through the Kuchiki's mind. Questions danced in the number of millions. Akuma had been watching with his scornful gaze? If that was the case why had he never spoken up? Was it hard for him to do so in this sense? Takehiko with his strength gave a nod to Akuma. This nod meant the world to the crimson hollow. It's body soon faded away as Takehiko's eyes looked upwards. Towards the ceiling as he felt injuries mending. It wouldn't be long now, would it? Soon he'd be able to begin training naturally. He needed to start exercising those muscles even more. Cero was a power he was aware of. But had put limited time into using it. Because he'd been good at kido in that sense. So what if he could push himself further into that form. Akuma had an idea that was for sure. He needed to begin finding himself a way forward. He couldn't just run headlong into danger anymore.
His right hand moved to his neck remembering that feeling. Suffocating beneath her digits as they grasped his neck. The feeling as tension placed upon his throat mounted. It kept building up until finally, it seemed like he'd die. But then she pushed her frame into him manipulating him. It hadn't been Chi no Miru nor had it been Ruin. His senses were dull and felt aching as he tried. For some answers but his uncle was busy. Far too busy for questions that came to him. What could he do to train his skills further? The only teacher he could go to would be Colin. But being dropped onto solid earth over and over again. That just seemed unpleasant in every fabric of the word. He needed to recover for now before thinking about moves. Akuma seemed to have a plan, it was perhaps for the best. That he put his faith into the hollow. Akuma had a plan in mind he could sense it. Just lingering in this place before him. It wouldn't be connected to anything else or others.
It was time for Takehiko to become his own master and learn. Not by being a Kuchiki or by being a Unabara. Takehiko had to be Takehiko, but for now, he needed to rest. His bones felt sore as they mended together. But the only thing left to do in reality was waiting for a change. Waiting until he healed up enough to fight without issue. But also to get back to his original intention, to save lives. To find a way forward with Akuma. Where he didn't lead to his destruction.