The tales of Touko Sonozaki arc is a term used to refers to the events that take place during the Bleach - Chronicles of the Soul saga. This arc focuses on Touko Sonozaki and her adventures in the human world. This arc introduces several new character such as, Hyorinmaru, Daichi Kazuhiro, Shusui Sakimori, and Karin Sonozaki. Character from the previous arc also make appearances such as, Aoko Sonozaki and Shiki Kurayami. Most of this arc takes place in the human world, with Karakura Town being the focus.
The First Story: Cold Dreams
The Wandering Siprit
On a cold day during winter, a echoing voice could be heard from the surrounding town, a young woman passing by decides to see what this echo could mean. Touko wearing a dark hooded cloak to keep herself warm from the icy cold weather enters the town, not seeing a single soul in sight due to the cold weather. She makes her first stop at a bar, in order to get a drink and get her self warmed up. Touko asks one of the bartenders for a drink and questioned him about the voice she heard while she was coming to town. The bartender said that its a spirit that haunts the town during the winter times and has been around for several years. He then says that since the spirit has been here the weather during the winter had become much worse, and due to this extreme cold several people have died. He then says that many of the town’s inhabitants have already left and if the situation does not get better more people will begin to leave, making it into a ghost town. The bartender than says that she should leave this place as soon as possible, as it is for her own good not to remain here too long, as the spirit doesn't like visitors and the same fate will befall her as it did with the people of this town. After talking to the bartender and listening to his stories, she asked if there is a hotel here to stay for the night, he said that yes there is and its just a few blocks from the bar, and to head towards west. She then gets up pays the bartender and leaves, she makes her way to the hotel and takes up a room for the night. During late at night while she was sleeping, Touko once again hears the echoing voice of the sprit, it calls out to her, as she quickly gets up from bed and heads towards the windows, and she sees that there is nothing except the dark night sky. She then goes back to sleep. The next morning, Touko wakes up from her sleep, she once again looks outside her window to see that the weather had become better, and people are able to move about, though she thinks to herself how long this calm weather will last, and what are the reasons for the sprit to haunt this town and cause it so much suffering. She thinks it might be the work of a hollow but then dismisses it thinking that a hollow won’t have the power to cause weather changes like this. She decides to head out and find the sprit before it causes anymore damage. Once again wearing her hooded cloak she leave the hotel and heads towards the entrance of the town, she leaves the town and starts searching for the sprit, she walked for hours looking for the spirit but could not find it. Suddenly a tall man with a large x-shaped mark on his faced appeared before her. Touko surprised at first looks at the man, wondering who it is and where did he come from, she then asks the man if he is responsible for the cold weather and all the things that happened to the town ahead. He merely states that he has been waiting here for some powerful to come by and that he wishes to fight them in battle, he cares for nothing else. Touko after sensing the cold reiatsu coming from the man realizes that this is sprit that has been haunting the town and that it is no ordinary sprit, but a powerful one. The man calls himself Hyorinmaru, and states that he is a zanpakuto sprit, he has been waiting for someone strong enough to fight against and that the time has now come, he says that Touko possesses a powerful reiatsu and that he wishes to fight her. He then without warning proceeds to attack and seal Touko within an ice pillar. Touko uses her shikai to break out and prepares to counterattack. Hyōrinmaru shows surprise at this and asked her what her Zanpakutō's name is, Touko remarks that it is none of his concern. The ice Zanpakutō then asks her to prepare herself as he has now challenged her to a fight. Touko draws her blade and takes her stance, ready to fight against the powerful ice zanpakuto, Hyorinmaru charges at her and begins to attack.
Clash: Ice Dragon vs Crystal Princess
Hyorinmaru attacks Touko but she is able to counter it and strike Hyorinmaru with her zanpakuto, as she is about to connect another attacks he quickly dodges the attack and flash steps away. He then sends an ice dragon from the tip of his blade towards Touko, she moves out of the way as the dragon is about to hit her and counters it by sending several of her crystal serpents at the ice dragon. The resulting clash causes a huge explosin of power and both the ice and crystal forms break away. Hyorinmaru is surprised to see that she was able to destroy one of his ice dragons so easily, he then rushes to attacks her but Touko uses flash step and goes behind him to strike but he to disappear and then reappears to attacks Touko. She blocks the attacks with her zanpakuto but Hyorinmaru uses his strength to push her back causing her to fall to the ground, he then quickly goes up into the air and once again sends another crystal dragon at her this time she is unable to move out of the way quickly enough and is devoured by the dragon. Hyorinmaru looked disappointed thinking the battle ended too quickly, as he is about to leave a huge burst of crystal erupts from the ground where Touko had been a moment ago, she emerges from the crystal though a bit injured, she then puts her had on the blade of her zanpakuto and incases it will crystal turning it into a crystal blade, Hyorinmaru looks on but is not impressed. She then looks at Hyorinmaru and tells him to wipe that disappointed look from his face as she is not finished yet, and the battle is just about to get started. She then crystallizes materials from her surroundings and swings her zanpakuto in an arc sending array of large crystal shards at Hyorinmaru, he quickly dodges them but she once again fires another array of crystal barrages and though he is trying to dodge them he is unable too and is hit by a shard on his left arm.
Hyorinmaru quickly freezes the crystal shard on his arm and breaks it, as he is about to recover Touko uses this chance to attack him, and slashes him across his chest causing him to fall to the ground, he puts his hand across his chest and sees blood coming out from the wound, he uses his ice powers to stop the bleeding and freezes his chest. He gets up and looks at Touko but she disappears and attacks him from behind with a crystal serpent, the serpent pushes him back quite far but he is able to deflect the attack and send the serpent away from him. He then retaliates by striking Touko with his blade and she too does the same, rather then using their respective powers they begin to fight one another with only their swords and dodge each other with their speed. For a while both the combatants continued to strike one another not gaining the advantage only able to injure each other to a degree, as the battle heated on and from each clash of their blade send out a huge wave of spiritual energy and caused a tremor around the town which could be felt by its inhabitants. Touko amazed by the power of the ice zanpakuto said that she enjoyed their battle but it was now time to finish this once and for all, Hyorinmaru with a calm look on his face say that he too had the pleasure of fighting such a strong opponent and that the victor of this battle would be him. Both Touko and Hyorinmaru begin to prepare for their final attack.
Touko's crystal blade shatters only the hilt remaining, Hyorinmaru seeing this as a chance of finishing her quickly forms ice on his blades and charges towards her, he tends to stab her with the ice on the tip of his blade encasing and freezing her. But as he is about to connect his attack his blade is stopped by a large crystal wall and he freezes the wall instead, unable to comprehend what had happened Touko explained to him that she had used her demonic crystal mirror to counter his freezing technique, though her crystal mirror shatters she quickly rearranges the crystal particles in the air and envelopes him in a cloud of crystal haze which then surround him, making it into a deadly tornado. She proceeds to move the hilt of her zanpakuto activating one of the crystal hazes ability and tears his flesh, caught by the surprise attack his entire body is slashed away by tiny crystal particles. Hyorinmaru falls to the grounds, lying in a pool of his own blood contemplating what had happened, as he lay there motionless Touko comes up to him and says that he had fought a good and hard battle, if she had not used her new mirror technique he would have defeated her with that last attack of his. Hyorinmaru says not be modest as she may have easily been able to defeat him without using that technique, he says he is happy that he was able to fight such a strong warrior, then with his last words he fell unconscious.
Several hours had passed since the conclusion of their battle. Hyorinmaru wakes up dazed, he opens his eyes to see Touko right next beside him, he asks her, how long has it been since he fell unconscious, she replied he was asleep for about 3 hours, Hyorinmaru surprised asked why did she wait for him this long, she should have just left him there. Touko says that she wanted to know the reason why he challenged her and why he caused so much suffering to the people of the town ahead, with a sad look on his face Hyorinmaru explained his origins. I’m an zanpakutou of ancient times a powerful force that was to be reconcked with, my masters name was Toshiro Hitsugaya he was a shinigami, a captain of the 13 court guard squads and for years we battled together, fighting enemies one after another and we grew in powers as well but as will all things nothing lasts forever, my master had passed on, as his zanpakuto I was suppose to go with him but due to being the reincarnation of a powerful spirit, I remained in the soul society. For ages without a master without a place to belong to I wandered looking for someone strong enough to wield me, some to call master and friend, I had made my way to the human and settled near this human town waiting for a warrior to pass by and someday challenge me, but it would seem my obsession for finding a new master clouded my judgment and my powers went rampant, though I did not wish to cause anyone any harm. After hearing his reason for challenging her, Touko said that she understood what he was going through as she too had wandered throughout the human world looking for a place to belong to, she then stood up and reached out her hand to him asking if he is willing to continue his journey with her and together they may find the place they are searching for, Hyorinmaru with a smile on his face took her hand and vowed to protect her and become her blade, she responded that she didn't need a weapon but needed a partner who would work beside her. Hyorinmaru satisfied with what he had heard acknowledged Touko as his new master and wielder. Hyorinmaru started to dissolve, fading away as he returned to his zanpakuto form, thanking Touko for what she had done. She picks up the blade and starts walking towards the distance, as she walks along her path she begins to wonder what the future holds for her, she then returns to the town.
Welcome to Karakura Town Part I
Several years later after the incident with the ice dragon Hyorinmaru, Touko once again visits another town standing outside at the outskirts of the town Touko says to herself, 'so this is the karakura town i've heard so much about, this place does have a rich amount of spritiual energy, no wonder all those strange phenomenon occurs in this town'. Touko then heads out to town, finding her way towards her new home. She settles in unpacking most of the things she had with her, suddenly she is apporached by Hyorinmaru who had manifested into his physical form, he asks Touko that why did she choose to live in a old place like this, Touko replies that since she is going to start an antique business to make money she thought that an old looking place like this will be perfect, the location is also good and she can do her research here without anyone becoming too suspicious. After their conversation Touko asks Hyorinmaru to help her out into tidying up the place, Hyorinmaru though reluctant agrees to help, and with a days worth of work they were able to finish up settling in. Two days later during the night time, as Touko was sleeping she could hear a strange howling noise coming from outside, disturbed by this she got up from bed and looked out her window though there was nothing there she could still hear the howling noises and it seems that the noises were coming from further away. She quickly ran outside taking her zanpakuto with her, she started running towards the direction of the sounds, she ran for several minutes untill she stoped, rushing to the scene she saw a girl being attacked by a hollow, the girl was plus and the hollow was trying to devour her. As the hollow was about to devour her Touko quickly using flash step stood between hollow and its victim holing the monster at bay with her zanpakuto, she told the girl plus to move out of the way, as the girl ran the hollow quickly turned his attention away from Touko and made chase towards the girl, Touko telling the hollow not to underestimate her, she cut the hollow in half in an instant saying that she doesn't have time to waste on lowly piece of trash hollow, after killing the hollow, she cleaned the blood of her zanpakuto and walked towards the girl. The girl was scared and confused at what had happened, Touko reassured the girl that she was safe now and that the monster is gone, she was going to go to a better place, Touko performed soul burial on the girl plus by using the hilt of her Zanpakutō, sending the girl to the afterlife. Touko finishing up her job there headed towards her shop, along the way she thought to herself that this was an interesting town and that she is going to enjoy staying here.
Welcome to Karakura Town Part II
On a bright sunny day, a man sit out by himself on the river side, people seem to pass him by, unable to see him, a woman walks by sensing a deep sadness coming from the man, she walks towards the man with the long white coat and silver hair, and aks him are you alone, the man looks at her surprised by the fact that she has been the first person to notice him in a while, he then says with a cold expression 'no i am here just resting for the time being, i'll take my leave once i am done'. The woman asks him if he would like to have some tea, the silver haired man thinks to himself that this person is the first one to notice him and now is offering him tea, he thinks to himself that tea would be nice, and accepts the woman's offer. He follows the woman to an antique shop, once there he sits down and has tea with the woman. She then introduces herself as Touko Sonozaki an antique store owner and asks the man's name, he replys by saying that his name is Daichi Kazuhiro. Touko then asks if Daichi is a shinigami or not, he reply by saying that he is a former captain of the Gotei 13 and that he has left soul society for certain reasons, though he doesn't elaborate on that, keeping his reasons of leaving to himself. He then asks Touko that how is it possible for her to see him, she replys that despite not being an offcial shinigami she does have the same powers as them, and as such can see other spritiual entities, she then say that she to possesses a zanpakuto. Touko asks him what is he going to do from now on since he left the soul society, Daichi says that since he is a shinigami he cannot interact with anyone in the human world and will mostly wander around like a ghost, he says if he was able to get his hands on a gigai then it would be possible for him to live in the human world as a human. Touko with a smile on her face says that she might be able to help him, since she knows a lot about gigai's and has been doing research into them, though she did not make a gigai for anyone else before and if Daichi was willing to become her first test subject. Daichi hearing that she could help him, offered himself to be her test subject if it meant he could live a peacefull life in the human world. Touko intrigued at the prospect of further developing her research into the gigai, told Daichi that he is going to stay with her for a while, until she creates the perfect gigai for him. She then told Daichi to follow her into the underground lab beneath the shop so that they could get started with the development of the gigai. Daichi happy about the events that had occured follows Touko, thinking that he may finally get his chance to live his life they way he wanted to and wonders about the future to come.
The Second Story: Hollow
Encounter: Touko Sonozaki vs Deadbone D
For several weeks there have been disturbance all around Karakura Town, there have been several incidents of unexplained murders, with the authorities unable to explain the cause of death. It seems the victims have no marks on there bodies, no signs of force or struggle, a clean murder. There are also no signs of evidence left behind by the murderer, the police are still investigating into the murders but are unable to find any suspects, the only statement that the police gave was that from the looks of the murders, it seems that the murderer must be a ghost or something unable to explain what had happened. Touko looking at the newpaper article with a cigarette in her mouth and with her reading glasses on, says that the murderer is no ghost but a highly dangerous hollow, she decides that she will investigate it tonight and try to find this hollow as quick as possible. Hyorinmaru appears from behind and saying that he will accompany her tonight, Touko replys that she is fine with it as she well planing on taking him with her anyway as she was not sure how many hollows they might have to deal with. Hyorinmaru shows concern for that recently there have been a high number of activity from the hollows and wonders if something has happened within Hueco Mundo, Touko calmy states that she doesn't care and that she is only here to take out the trash, not to worry about them too much. After their conversation Touko asks Hyorinmaru to bring her some tea, to which he complies and goes on to bring it for her, as Hyorinmaru leaves she continues to read the newpaper and says to herself that tonight's the night that i am going to find the culprit and put an end to all these murders.
Later that night Touko along with Hyorinmaru patrolled the streets of Karakura Town, looking for the hollow responsible for the recent murders. They walked for hours going from place to place unable to find the perpetrator, suddenly a loud scream could he heard from the distance, Touko along with Hyorinmaru quickly rushed to see where the scream was coming from. As they arrived the scene, they saw a large hollow ripping out a soul from a living human body and eating it, Touko horrified at what had happened said "dammit we are too late, should have gotten here sooner, we were unable to save yet another innocent life". Touko looked at the hollow with an angry expression on her face, Hyorinmaru kept holding her back from recklessly attacking the hollow without a proper strategy. The hollow laughed as it devoured its latest victim, and then drew its attention towards Touko and Hyorinmaru, and said" hmmmm two more victims for me to devour, this is indeed turning out to be a splendid night, and from what i can sense you two have exceptional spiritual power, if I eat you two my own powers will further increase , I will soon be able to evolve into a Vasto Lorde", hahahahahahahaha. Touko surprised at what she had heard asked the monster to explain what he meant by that. The hollow first introduced itself as Deadbone D an adjuchas class hollow, he then explaind " I've been devouring hollows for a long time in order to evolve into the final stage of the menos class a Vasto Lorde. The reason I came to the human world was to find a powerfull source of spiritual power and so I decided to devoured souls from living huiman beings since they taste much better and also increased my spiritual power at a much faster rate, my desire is to become a Vasto Lorde by any means possible even if it means killing a few worthless human. Deadbone then said I've been waiting for someone like you; you have an enormous amount of spirit power so I advise you to give yourself up since no matter how powerful you are in the end you are still going to die anyway". Deadbone finished with explaining his reasons took his stance ready to attack, Touko did the same by drawing out her zanpakuto, and telling Hyorinmaru not to interfere in this fight, she then charged towards deadbone, as did deadbone charged towards Touko.
Touko quickly changes direction of her attack using flash step to disappear and then reappear from above catching Deadbone by surprise but the hollow was able to dodge her sneak attack, quickly launching a punch of his own. Touko blocked the punch with her zanpakuto, but Deadbone uses his other hand to try to grab a hold of Touko, she once again escapes using flash step. Deadbone uses a barrage of punches against Touko but they are unable to connect due to Touko's speed as she dodges each and every one of them, Deadbone once again attacks, this time able to punch Touko in the stomach and sending her flying a few yards crashing into an abandoned building, Deadbone then laughed at how easily he was able to defeat her. Touko resurfaces from the rubble, slightly injured as blood dropped from her forehead though this did not hinder her from fighting, Touko now mad says I can't believe that I let a lowly adjuhas class like that get the best of me, this ends now", by saying the command Sever the Bonds Touko releases her zanpakuto Kesshoumaru. She then sends a large crystal serpent towards Deadbone, the hollow counters the attack with a powerful cero of his own which he fires from his mouth, the cero is able to destroy the serpent but Touko sends a barrage of crystal shards towards Deadbone, he dodges most of them but he is pierced on his right arm by one of the shards, bleeding and in pain Deadbone says to himself "Dammit I am still not strong enough, her powers increased the moment she released that zanpakuto of hers, need to absorb more souls but this is not the time or place, if I stay here any longer I might get killed, its time to retreat". He then looked at Touko and said, " well girly I enjoyed our little fight here but it seems its time for me to leave, oh but don’t worry this isn't over yet not by a long shot, I will have my revenge for humiliating and injuring me, till next time bye". Touko says "don’t think you can get away from me not after what you did to all those innocent people, I am going to kill you right here and now". Touko heads towards Deadbone but before she can attack him the hollow calls out, "Gillian's come forth", and from within a Garganta, four Gillian class menos appears, Deadbone bidding Touko farewell makes his escape through a Garganta of his own, he then disappears leaving Touko to deal with the four Gillian's.
Touko says to herself, "that bastard hollow got away and he used these Gillian as a distraction, can't believe that hollow could be this crafty, guess I'll have to deal with these weaklings". As Touko is about to draw her blade and attack the Gillian's, Hyorinmaru steps in and says " You've done enough let me deal with the Menos Grande, take this time to recover your wounds from the battle". After he finishes talking to Touko, Hyorinmaru draws his zanpakuto and slashes an ice dragon towards one of the Gillian, the Gillian instantly freezes and Hyorinmaru using his sword shatters the ice that was holding the hollow killing it in the process. He then uses his Sennen Hyōrō ability and traps the other three Gillian within the large ice pillars, at his command the pillars then start to move towards the Menos Grande's freezing, enveloping and crushing them all at the same time, Hyorinmaru was easily able to defeat the 4 Gillian on his own. Touko complimented Hyorinmaru on a job well done, in taking care of the Gillian but Hyorinmaru with a serious look on his face says "it might not be over yet, don't you sense it a large spiritual pressure is coming from the other side of town, it seems there is some else out there besides us, we should investigate this at once, as it might be a new enemy we are dealing with". Touko agrees with Hyorinmaru and prepares to head towards the source of the unknown spiritual pressure, they both flash step away and disappears from the area.
Friend or Foe:The First Contact
On the other side of Karakura town, a man with dark brown clothing and a hat walks along the streets of karakura slashing away at the hollows that stand in his way. He uses his blade with only one hand and easily cuts through the hordes of hollows that lurk the streets, as he killed all the hollows within the vicinity he is met with an unexpected visitor, an adjuhas class hollow by the name of Grand Screamer. Screamer without any hesitation attacked Shusui but he was able to dodge the hollows attacks. Screamer then fires a cero at Shusui but he deflects the cero with his bare hands, frustrated Screamer once again attacks Shusui but he just punches the hollow away, tired of playing games Screamer tries to attack one last time, then Shusui draws out his zanpakuto and in an instant cuts Screamer in half defeating the hollow in a matter of seconds, he then proceeds to kill all the remaining hollows. After killing the hollows Shusui sheaths his zanpakuto, Touko arrives at the scene along with Hyorinmaru, after inspecting the area she then looks at Shusui and asks him who he is, Shusui with his back turned looks at Touko but does not answer her. Touko once again asks who he is and then draws out her zanpakuto ready to fight him, Hyorinmaru does the same. Shusui then faces them both and finally replies,” put down your weapons, I am not here to fight you and I am certainly not your enemy". Shisui then explains the current situation and his circumstances.