Amagiri, Ai [Future Regrade - WIP] Oct 26, 2016 7:47:48 GMT -5
Post by Ai Amagiri on Oct 26, 2016 7:47:48 GMT -5
On The Surface
Name: Ai Amagiri
Name Kanji: Ai using the kanji 愛 'love/affection' & Amagiri: Using the kanji for 天 'sky/heaven' & 霧 'fog'
Age / Apparent Age: 150/18
Height & Weight: 5'1" & 115 lbs
Hair & Eyes: Blonde hair/Purple Eyes
Blood Type: O
Dominant Hand: Left
Chinese Zodiac: Year of the Tiger
Default Expression: Glare
Gait: Slow (because of her short legs), likes to set her own pace and make others slow down for her/hardly ever makes the effort to catch up to someone. She also tends to walk in a more masculine manner, swaying her shoulders rather than her hips.
At 5'1" & 115 lbs Ai is a very small girl that makes up for it with a big personality. She has a head full of thick, platinum blonde locks that fall past her waist. Her fringe fully covers her forehead and frames around the side of her face and she has two longer side-locks that fall in front of her shoulders, while the rest of her hair flows down her back. Most of the time she's seen wearing her hair free-flowing, although in situations where she has to study or is particularly frustrated, she might gather her hair up into a bun high on her head. Her eyes are tyrian purple, like grape juice.
Ai's canines are very sharp, sometimes making it appear as if she has tiny, short fangs. She has fair skin that can burn easily with too much exposure to the sun. Despite a terrible diet, Ai doesn't carry much extra weight, but neither does she have a very defined musculature. She's only slightly toned, probably due to her rambunctious behavior. She's the popular 'hourglass' build, with C cup breasts and wider hip bones that cut an attractive figure. Her own favorite features are her long hair, and her hands, which are rather dainty, especially when she wields her zanpakutō. She keeps her nails long, and painted black. And she's usually loud enough to tell people exactly what she's feeling anyway, but her facial expressions are often very drastic. She isn't good at hiding what she's feeling.
Like every unranked shinigami of the Seireitei, Ai wears the typical black kimono and hakama. Her chest is wrapped in bandages underneath, and whenever she happens to be off-duty but still in uniform, she may take one arm out of her kimono sleeve, yakuza-style. Her off-duty clothes usually run in black as well, since she's a fan of the color. Most typically she can be found in a black bandeau, with black shorts purchased in the human world. For festivals or formal events, she wears yukata and kimono.
Ai smells like bergamot oranges. Her voice is deep (for her size) and slightly scratchy (Reference).
Empowering her own smell, her reiatsu may heavily scent the air with the smell of bergamot. Her reiatsu feels very heavy, even when she is the weaker opponent. Despite her small body, she likes to make a big impact, and her reiatsu reflects that. Her pressure is a light, bright yellow. Not because she's particularly sunny or warm in disposition, but because yellow is f***ing bright. Her reiatsu is extremely luminescent, burning brightly, demanding attention. A gut-punch rather than a caress. It bursts out from Ai and scatters around in wild curves, with no straight lines or sense of order. Given enough time for Ai to grow in power, her reiatsu might prove to be a light that can shine through almost any darkness.
All That Sass
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Vice(s): Pride, Sloth
Ai is an outspoken brat. If she's unhappy or uncomfortable, she'll make sure to loudly and clearly let everyone else know. She's a very opinionated girl, and if someone else doesn't want to talk to her she has no problem simply holding a conversation with herself. Ai is a stubborn girl, who clearly defines her comfort zone and will strike up a terrible, loud rebellion if someone tries to force her to leave it. Ai will only commit herself to tasks that she agrees with, morally or otherwise. She can go the extra mile to complete a job that strikes her as worthy or important. On the other hand, if she is given a job that she finds unsavory, she will immediately put her foot down. She can be 'convinced' to do things, either by having her narcissistic ego fed, or using a 'task-reward' system. Thankfully, using the reward system is rather easy, because Ai is a major foodie, and her ethics only hold up until someone entices her with a five-star dinner. The only thing to watch out for is her picky eating habits. The 'Ai Food Pyramid' has about five different categories for desserts and baked goods, and no room at all for vegetables. She can also be a heavy drinker, given enough time
Ai is observant enough to easily pick up on other people's emotions, but whether or not she actually caters to their mood is a different matter. She might see someone mad, and simply aim to pester them even more. On the other hand, around people she cares about, she will at least attempt to be a shoulder to lean on and an ear to talk into, although she isn't great at giving advice unless someone is looking for a frank solution. Affection-wise, Ai can sometimes give out mixed signals. She enjoys being a tease, and hasn't ever been out looking for her 'one true love' when immediate pleasure can be found.
'Immediate pleasure' is also a big theme for Ai's personality. As a girl who has largely always been 'comfortable' in her situation since the time she's grown up, Ai often lacks long-term goals. She's un-adaptable, and doesn't want to strive for improvement when she's perfectly fine where she is. It's not so much a fear of failure, as it is pure stubbornness. She only seeks change when the current situation is no longer working out for her. For example, she'll only train to get stronger after being defeated. And even when she does manage to acquire big aims, she usually only completes them in sporadic fits. If she wants to become stronger, she'll train hard for a few days, take a week off, and then train for a few more days, repeat. Most of her days are spent pursuing goals that can be immediately satisfied, and things that come to her on a whim. The long goals that she has had, have never been planned out as such.
When she isn't mad, Ai can be easily entertained. She likes to have fun, and enjoys being around funny people and jokesters (unless the jokes are aimed towards her). She enjoys all sorts of cheesy puns and comic nonsense. When she's really having fun, her laugh is loud, and can come off as obnoxious. She also snickers a lot, as she's the type of girl who will laugh at someone if they trip and fall. Even in the middle of a battle, her face might light up in a smile, albeit a malicious one, or she might let out an evil giggle.
When she is mad, Ai quick to start a fight. She likes a nice screaming match, but also isn't afraid to escalate to violence. Once she's ascertained someone is her 'enemy' she'll hold a long grudge. No matter how long she's known someone, or what they've done for her in the past, the minute someone lets her down they are violently cast from her life. The bright side is that Ai treats people on an individual case-by-case basis, and holds no large grudge over races or types of people. No one is met with outright hostility until they do something to trigger her.
Ai is lazy and impatient, which usually adds up to someone who has no tolerance for years of schooling. And it is true that she can't be contained inside a classroom for long, but Ai is blessed with a brain that is quick to pick up concepts, so usually she doesn't need to be stuck in a desk all day anyway. Her learning, like her physical training, usually comes as a result of being proven ignorant in a subject, so most of the time she's simply seeking knowledge on only one thing or another. But there's always something new to learn; there are always things that other people know that she doesn't, so actually she finds herself in pursuit of knowledge quite often, if only to satisfy her ego. Her memory retention is only average, and unfortunately the things she remembers most clearly are usually negative, thanks to her pessimism. It's probably obvious, but Ai is not a good 'educator'. If she knows something you don't, you definitely should not let her know.
Ai is a fan of theater and the arts. Or at least the ones that are flashy or exciting, which promptly counts out things like Noh theater. She's passionate about festivals and events, and will find time to attend and dress up. She completely transforms from lazy to extremely thorough. Going to a festival with Ai means visiting every stall and stand on every street, watching every event possible, and basically walking around until everyone has bloody feet. She has a similar love for music, and will listen to all kinds. Most of her trips to Earth are for festivals.
Her ego can get in the way of Ai observing things she should probably notice, like her surroundings or the people in the area. She wants to think that no one around her at any given time is strong enough, or willing, to harm her. Thus she can be prone to traps she's unaware of. She isn't, however, gullible. Her pessimistic nature actually saves her from falling for most people's deceptions. Her stubbornness, too. If someone tries to trick her into doing something, their plan might fail simply because Ai doesn't want to be bossed around.
Despite much of her behavior coming off masculine, Ai is actually a bit of a girly girl. She gets enraged by the possibility of acquiring scars from fights, and worries about breaking her nails and damaging her hair. She's into cosmetics, although her rambunctious behavior often results in her makeup not staying on her face for long.
♦ Independent - Ai isn't a needy person, and will be reluctant to admit she needs to rely on anyone.
♦ Straightforward - Frank about what she wants to say. Doesn't mince words. Honest.
♦ Loyal - Ai demands loyalty from people around her, but is also loyal herself.
♦ Nimble Mind - Ai is quick to understand concepts.
♦ Stout-hearted - Dauntless. Ai can hardly ever be intimidated or cowed.
♦ Audacious - Recklessly bold. Ai doesn't take time to consider the 'what ifs' or consequences before taking action, even in dangerous environments.
♦ Fierce - Ai feels intensely and is inclined to react violently.
♦ Stubborn - Ai's stubborn streak can actually make her accomplish great things...but most of the time it just makes her annoying to deal with.
♦ Rebellious - Prone to defying orders, and she generally doesn't respect her superiors.
♦ Lazy - As if rebellious wasn't enough, she also tends to do the bare minimum unless someone's actually goaded her into doing more to prove herself.
♦ Vain/Arrogant - Excessively proud of her own qualities, and sees almost everyone else as 'not as good'.
♦ Pessimistic - A tendency to stress the negative or unfavorable or to take the gloomiest possible view.
♦ Vindictive - Whether the offense is big or small, Ai will seek revenge.
♦ Temperamental - Ai is easy to anger, and hard to appease.
◊ Chews her lip when thinking/making a decision.
◊ Pointing. She often rudely points her finger at people.
◊ Hand waving. Ai often waves her hand dismissively, either at people or when talking about ideas.
◊ Yelling. She isn't big on "inside voices" and will often raise her voice to a yell to get her point across no matter the time or place.
◊ Ai often talks to herself.
Driven by Desire
Zanpakutō Spirit and Inner World:
Nengan (念願, kanji meaning "heart's desire") is a small female spirit clad in a black cloak and armor, with straight, mid-length blonde hair draping down her back. She stands at only 4 feet tall, although she is not a child. She wears large black metal pauldrons on her shoulders, metal plates that form a skirt around her waist, and solid metal boots on her feet. The rest of her body from the neck down is covered in a skin-tight black cloth, long-sleeves and gloves, and pants that tuck into her boots. On her back she wears a short black cape. Her shoulder pauldrons connect on her back to form a sheath for a large claymore she carries. The claymore is almost equal to her own body in length, and broad as well. Nengan always faces away, only turning around in pivotal moments. Her face, if she has one, is completely concealed by a blank, oval-shaped metal mask. The metal is especially reflective, so all anyone sees when gazing at her face is their own reflection.
Nengan is an indestructible pillar of support for all that Ai is. But because she is a part of Ai's soul, this, unfortunately, means that most of the time Nengan's support operates in the form of "I". Nengan has an absolute, unshakable confidence in her strength. Aside from the haughty attitude Nengan exhibits, the concept of "Ai's strength" and "Nengan's strength" is the largest disconnect between the two, but also their usual form of communication. Nengan herself gets angry when Ai trains things like Kidō and Hakuda, because most of the time it means Ai is intentionally avoiding her. Nengan is impatient to implant some ambition into Ai, so that they can both grow stronger, not just Ai. While the two are alike in personality, both getting along and butting heads because of their similarities, Nengan mostly differs in that the spirit also holds all of Ai's ambition. Nengan is the version of Ai that knows she's talented, capable of great things. Ai herself, due to past events, has completely suppressed such ambition. Therefore she only sees Nengan's confidence as arrogance.
Nengan is more selfish than Ai. Perhaps as a mechanic to preserve Ai's ambition, Nengan does not view relationships with others as something necessary. Ai's friendship with Zakuro was what initially sent Ai into decline. Nengan goes so far as to resent Ai's relationships, such as Ai's love for Gin. This is a second disconnect between Ai and Nengan.
Despite her destroyed ambition, it seems unlikely that Ai, who has a solid confidence in herself, would need a "pillar of support" as her spirit-half. But it is Nengan who has always been the "confident" part of her soul. Ai was an unruly wild child who was never encouraged, only told endlessly to settle down and behave. Nengan was always the part of Ai's soul that shrugged off reprimands and let Ai's soul continue on, rowdy and unperturbed. It was the "Nengan" part of Ai's soul that Zakuro admired. It was Zakuro's death that caused Ai's soul to fragment, to birth Nengan.
With Zakuro's death, Ai lost both her confidence and her ambition. The first true time in her life that she wasn't sure what she was doing was right. Nengan spent years trying to communicate with Ai. She may have never been heard, and Ai given in to a life of drinking and partying. As it was, some part of Ai remained reluctant not to live exactly like Shiho did. That reluctance allowed Ai to hear Nengan's voice for the first time. Nengan coaxed Ai's confidence back to life by getting Ai to enroll in Academy to become a shinigami. Unfortunately Ai's similarly-budding ambition suffered another blow her first year of Academy. Too much, too soon.
Ai's inner world is a murky, foggy swamp. There are no buildings or structures of any kind, save for a dock. A dock that extends seemingly-forever, with multiple endless branches. No matter which way Ai walks, or which turn she takes, she will never reach 'the end' of the dock. The heavy fog also prevents a long-distance view. A thick canopy of trees blocks out the sky. The weather is warm and humid, and never changes. Neither does the time. Somewhere past the tree trunks, there is a setting-sun keeping the swamp from darkness, but because of the fog and the trees, the sun can never be seen directly, and it's position in the sky never changes. The dock is the only way to traverse through the swamp, as there is little to no land, only moss-covered rocks and trees rising up out of the murky swamp waters. There's no telling how deep the water is.
Her world is largely characterized by her ambition-less nature. Although at any given present moment Ai knows exactly what she wants, she never has a large 'future goal' to work towards. So her world only provides immediate comfort without giving any long-term satisfaction; the swamp is warm because she prefers warm weather, lacks direct sunlight because she hates to be out in the sun getting burnt, and although the dock has forks and turns, they are seldom and only ever come one at a time, and the dock itself is endless so she never has to make a big decision about which way to go. On the flip side, never will she arrive at any destination, she'll never know how far she's walked or how long.
Pre-Release Appearance: Ai's unreleased zanpakutō is a wakizashi, slightly shorter in length than a regular katana. Because it is the form that is most often seen, the hilt and guard are extravagant and heavily decorated. The hilt (tsuba) is black metal, with thick strips of hot pink and purple cloth are braided across the length. Tiger's eye and diamond gems dot the hilt to serve as menuki. The end pommel is gold, and topped with a red peony flower. The guard is four points, in a flower shape, made of gold and a black metal. Each of the four points features a small gem, tiger's eye or diamond. The collar (habaki) is gold and black metal, four-pointed and meant to resemble a flower as well. The sheath is a dark purple, with gold accents on the top and bottom. Ai wears her zanpakutou across her back, with a strap crossing her chest in the front. Near her collarbone, the strap has a lever-type buckle for easy release. When she is about to fight, she reaches over her shoulder to grab the wakizashi's hilt with one hand, and with her other hand flips the buckle. The bottom of the sheath is weighted by a lead tip to help the release process. Ai lets the sheath drop to the ground behind her and swings her now-unsheathed zanpakutō over her shoulder.
Shikai Appearance: Upon release, Ai's zanpakutō completely changes sword form and length, turning into a double-edged claymore. Were she a man, someone might think that her shikai size is to make up for something else. The blade extends to 48 inches (4 ft) and grows in width to 6 inches at it's widest point, tapering down towards the end. The blade is dark gray, with a black cross guard and gray pommel. The cross guard are two thin arches that extend past the width of the blade. The hilt is long, to easily allow room for two-handed techniques, and is wrapped in black cloth. Overall the zanpakutō is large but deceptively simple, giving no hint to it's powers. Her zanpakutō sheath disappears in this form.
Bankai Appearance: Not yet achieved.
Release Phrase: 「溶けよ、,念願! 」「Tokeyo, Nengan!」「Melted by Desire!」
Shikai Power: Shikai turns Ai's zanpakutō into a claymore that is in a constant state of "melting". Kind of like a popsicle. A deadly, molten popsicle. The outermost layer of the claymore is liquefied, while the core is constantly generating more material and pushing it out to the rest of the blade. This may be hard to see at first, because although the "liquid" seeping out is as hot as lava, it does not glow and instead stays steel grey in color. Thus, her blade simply looks like it's dripping. The liquid that comes off her blade is magma. Once it leaves the blade, it quickly cools and hardens into obsidian. Her blade being a virtual fountain of lava, attacks she makes with the blade directly are searing. Opponents won't suffer blood loss, because her blade cauterizes as it slices, leaving enemies with both burns and cuts. Additionally, shards of hardened obsidian are often left behind when material comes off her blade during a cut. Altogether, enemies find it a pain to quickly heal from Ai's damage.
Bankai Power: Not yet achieved.
Ai is a wick that's quick to light. If words don't solve her problems fast enough, the next step is to start swinging. She's very aggressive, and if she can get away with a hack and slash style she won't hesitate to use it. She's also capable of thinking through her next two or three attacks, especially if mindlessly swinging away at an opponent isn't working for her. But she isn't one to come up with a detailed strategy for the entire scenario.
She fights mainly with her zanpakutou. It might be obvious by the fact that she totes around a large sword, but she's a girl who utilizes strength over speed. She hounds opponents with powerful attacks to wear them down rather than quickly trying to strike vital points. For Ai, it doesn't matter where she hits them as long as she actually lands a hit.
Current Division: Fifth Division
Previous Divisions: N/A
♪ Died as a human infant, at seven months old
♪ Was sent to District 6, South Rukongai & given to Shiho Saiga, a wealthy woman of leisure
♪ At 10 years old, Ai (and her mother Shiho) were kicked out of the share-house they lived in, because of Ai's unruly, troublemaker demeanor
♪ At 12 years old, Ai made her first friend, a girl named Zakuro
♪ Through her teenage years and 20s, Ai makes noticeable progress in her behavior thanks to Shiho actually parenting, and Zakuro's presence
♪ After many peaceful years, at 85, Zakuro takes her own life, and leaves Ai alone
♪ Through her 90s Ai adventures with a group of other wealthy-district souls, touring the poorer districts
♪ Through her 100s & 110s, Ai falls in with a group of women who live leisurely as her mother Shiho does, partying all night. Ai becomes a heavy drinker.
♪ In her 110s, she gains her first lover, a man named Rikiya.
♪ At 112, she hears the voice of her zanpakutō. But she has no idea what the voice even is, or where it came from. It simply vaguely taunts her. She dumps Rikiya.
♪ Also at 112, she meets a future academy student who tells her he also 'heard a voice' before taking the academy exam & passing.
♪ At 113, Ai takes the academy exam for the first time. She fails.
♪ Through the rest of her 110s, despite her efforts, the voice is quiet.
♪ In her 120s Ai goes back to a life of partying; somehow thinks drunkenly rambling alone in her room every night with help her hear 'the voice'.
♪ At 128, Ai takes the academy exam again. She passes.
♪ At 136 Ai graduates, having taken an extra two years to graduate. Joins Division 5.
♪ At 147 Ai goes on a mission and meets Ginjo Xoi.
♪ At 150, Ai and Ginjo become 'exclusive'.
Unfortunately for Ai, a lengthy human life was not to be. Before she'd even completed a year on Earth, she fell ill and passed on to Soul Society.
Not lucky in life, but perhaps lucky in fate: The infant Ai was sent to the wealthy District 6 of South Rukongai. The soul who was to be her mother was a local beauty, with fair skin, dark hair, bright pink eyes, and a killer figure. Her name was Shiho Saiga. Shiho herself was initially excited, and glad to have a legacy to call her own, but like any unprepared mother, her happiness soon turned to annoyance when her newborn got in the way of having fun.
So for the first few years of Ai's life, her days were filled with many different women: All of Shiho's friends. Whoever agreed to take care of the child while Shiho went out to play. Made easier by the fact that Shiho lived in a large, multi-story building full of women similar to herself, ladies who were single for one reason or another. Some also had children, and they were most often the ones who took care of Ai. Even through Ai's earliest memories, she cannot ever remember being in want for anything major. This was largely the benefit of living in District 6. Though she lived in a share-house with her mother, it was still a large, sprawling mansion. Shiho never said no to anything Ai asked for, if only so that she wouldn't have to deal with a crying child. And thus Ai grew up well fed in a posh environment, where the wealthy mingled with each other, and things like the poverty of the higher-numbered Rukongai districts never touched them.
As Ai grew into her 10th year, Shiho gained more interest in the daughter she'd now been "raising" for a decade. It was as if on one particularly boring day, with nothing left to do, Shiho decided to finally take notice of her daughter. But what she found immediately made her retreat from parenting once more. A tyrannical 10 year old who hadn't been hindered or leashed by rules, without a strong parent figure. Ai was a small horror to deal with. She'd grown past crying for things she wasn't immediately given, now she simply pouted until everyone's backs were turned, and took what she wanted without asking. If another child in the mansion took something she wanted before she could get to it, Ai turned into a bully. Shiho didn't want to deal with it...But as both mother and daughter came to find out, neither did anyone else. Shiho was finally approached by a gang of women whom she shared the house with, and asked to leave. They did not want Ai around their more well-behaved child. At best, she'd bully them. At worst, she'd turn them into a bully as well.
Suddenly, Shiho and Ai were forced to move. Though they remained in District 6, they found themselves in a small house with no company but each other. And for the next eight years, as Ai turned into a teenager, Shiho was left to parent her nightmare of a daughter all by herself. Perhaps, in the end, this was for the best. Shiho, while irresponsible, was a calm, quiet woman who could be determined when she saw need to be. And the change in environment finally made her see that she needed to rein in her daughter. She bunkered down and fully committed herself to motherhood. While she still couldn't be the most strict parent in the world, her more constant presence in Ai's life turned Ai from tyrant to...Well, slightly less difficult. She was still a brat, and it was too late to change that. Especially when they still had their every need satisfied by living in a wealthy district.
Ai's first true friend also appeared during these critical development years. Her name was Zakuro. At the time they first met, both girls were just 12. Ai was still a little beast, and Zakuro was even smaller than Ai, and quiet. Their first interaction was Ai bullying Zakuro for a piece of candy. And afterwards, Zakuro watched Ai go off and intimidate boys who were older and twice her size. When Ai won the scraps, Zakuro decided what she was witnessing was a small hero. A girl completely the opposite of herself, who said whatever she wanted and could beat up boys. The admiration Zakuro had for Ai made her stick close. And eventually, Ai turned from bullying to Zakuro, to beating up others who tried to bully her friend.
With a friend in tow to do everything with, a schedule of leisurely days, and then years, flew by. All the way until the girls were up into their 80s. It was all happy times, or so Ai thought. Unfortunately, Zakuro harbored feelings she never spoke a word of aloud. While Ai was just as strong and confident as she'd been when they were 12, Zakuro was depressed to find that she hadn't changed. Some part of her younger self must have wished to not only be near Ai, but be more like Ai. She did not want to be the timid shadow, but she found she still was. And 80 years was a long time to go on not changing when one wanted to. So during the summer of their 85th year, Zakuro decided she would become someone new entirely. She took her own life, to join the stream of souls on their journey to be human on Earth.
The biggest impact her friend's death had on her, was that Ai stopped bullying altogether. She'd already stopped picking on those obviously weaker than her, thanks to Zakuro's feelings, and after that she had no one left to protect either. At home, things with her mother Shiho were less than savory. Daughter and mother simply did not get along. Ai was loud and temperamental, Shiho was a calm ocean. Shiho did not relate to her daughter's interests, and as Ai was rather independent anyway, she had once again pulled away from any heavy parenting. Instead she finally saw an adult daughter that could be left alone, and resumed going out to play with her friends, and with men, through all hours of the night.
For several years following her friend's death, Ai was not quite as rambunctious as she'd used to be. She joined in with a group of younger souls from a nearby district. Their biggest adventure was travelling to the lower districts, to walk with well-made sandals among those who had none. Ai
joined them for a change of pace more than anything else. It didn't keep her entertained for long, and a few years later she joined in with a group of girls surprisingly similar to the ones her mother ran around with. Girls who woke up in the late afternoon and stayed up through the wee hours of the morning, drinking and partying. Sake and liquor proved to quickly pass the time, when you drank enough of it. Ai enjoyed herself, and even found a steady lover, a man named Rikiya.
Rikiya and Ai met during a night when they'd both been drinking too much sake, but when they met again at a bar several nights later, they began a pattern. They kept on for several years, but although they were attracted to each other, there was nothing between them but pleasure. Still, nothing might have changed, except for one night as she lay in her boyfriend's arms, Ai heard a mocking voice taunt her, "Quiet sleeping in a man's arms every night, aren't you domesticated?". Upon hearing the voice, Ai shot up in bed, looking around for an intruder. She'd clearly heard the voice. But there was no one to be found besides a sleeping Rikiya. And the voice was female.
Ai was content to ignore it as nothing more than her imagination. Even when a similar snarky comment was heard the next night. And the next. By the week's end, she was in a fury, and the one who took the brunt of that anger was Rikiya: She dumped him. Which she almost immediately regretted. But she didn't want to admit it, and Rikiya seemed content to move on. So Ai was left alone with a voice that taunted her in the middle of the night, one apparently only she could hear.
This voice, though it was not immediately apparent to Ai, was Nengan. At the time nothing more than a voice, but still managing to be a sassy one.
Ai discovered the answer to her voice-mystery by chance, she met a soul in a bar one night who had just passed his academy entrance exam. He was to be a shinigami. A voice in his head, and clear signs that he had a good amount of reiatsu, had prompted him to take the exam, and he'd managed to pass it the first time. If there was a solution to figuring out the annoying voice in her head by becoming a shinigami, Ai was suddenly determined to find it. But she was not particularly gifted, and her voice had just come to her only a week before. She took the very next entrance exam the academy held. And she failed.
The first big failure of her life, all things considered. Ai didn't take it well. She pouted. She insisted the exam had been a waste of time anyway. She carried on, not just for months, but for several years. And left with no other way to deal with it, Ai addressed the voice itself. Instead of going out with her friends, she would stay home. She would sit in a room, alone, and try to communicate with the voice. When this didn't immediately produce clear results, she went back to partying and drinking sake every night. Except she would go home alone. And would drunkenly call out to the voice. She would sing loudly, bang on the walls, as if making noise would somehow gain the voice's attention. Stubbornness carried her through these nightly rituals .It was never meant to be a long-term goal, but Ai wasn't going to fail. If the voice talked once, she was determined to force it to speak again. Years passed and the drunken rambling in her room alone decreased in frequency, but continued to happen, becoming a normal part of Ai's night. By the time she took her second attempt on the exam, the voice had managed three whole sentences before fading out. She passed the exam.
The Academy proved to to be Ai's biggest frustration. She was not a genius who sailed through her academy years and graduated as a young shinigami. No. She was impatient in the classroom and disobedient during training exercises. Ai remained in the academy two entire years longer than she was supposed to. It took her eight years to graduate. Whereas decades had passed before with Ai hardly noticing, the years for her academy felt like a lifetime on their own. Any time she tried to quit, the voice would taunt her in her head. And to her aggravation, it was silent when she did well. The end result was the most satisfying: Ai learned the voice's name was Nengan, and was able to achieve shikai.
Ai applied and was accepted into the Fifth division upon graduating. Her shikai, though unstable, is clearly offensive with no secrets or hidden abilities. And although she can now communicate with Nengan rather easily, since both of them are talkers, simply talking with her zanpakutō has not given Ai any true knowledge or power. Nengan is haughty, and Ai hasn't been given any incentive to make herself suffer Nengan's taunting, to actually train. Ai spends most of her days avoiding large responsibilities, and taking whatever opportunities she gets to visit Earth, which has proven to be the largest form of entertainment she's had since her years spent with Zakuro.
Her other form of entertainment came in the form of a person, though he was not like Zakuro at all. Off on a mission one day, Ai became acquianted with Ginjo Xoi. A shinigami from Division One that wanted to tell her what to do and how to do it. Apparently running in and hacking away at whatever Ai found was not to Ginjo's liking. He annoyed her. And to get back at him, Ai purposefully found her way over to his division and began to pester him daily. Whether because they got off on the wrong foot, or simply because she's a pessimist, Ai found Gin's reiatsu another reason to keep showing up in places he frequented. She was suspicious, thinking he was up to something. No one with a reiatsu that dark was actually the man he appeared to be: A charming, smiley bastard that got along well with everyone. He used her interest in him to his advantage. Until eventually late one night, Ai found herself with the ultimate opportunity to study her target: No barriers lay between them. Not even their clothes.
It wasn't what she'd been going for, but she found she enjoyed being Gin's lover. In the beginning, he was nothing more than another 'Rikiya', simply a man to bed down with at night. But Gin proved to be much more. Unlike with her former lover, Ai and Ginjo had chemistry. Out of bed, they often butted heads, and had fights. But Ginjo wasn't simply content to lay down the argument and move on as Rikiya had. That proved to be pivotal for Ai, who had quit her relationship with Rikiya and found that she couldn't fix her regrets after he was gone. Gin gave her no room to regret in the first place.
Years passed. Gin, secretive at first, gradually revealed parts of the darkness in himself to Ai, the reason for the reiatsu she'd been so suspicious of in the first place. But where she might've tried to take him down before, she's now loyal to him. She doesn't necessarily agree with his evil scheming and brutal demeanor, but she has no particular commitment to 'Good' to actually motivate her to stop him. They are similar enough that she can imagine herself in his shoes, in the life he's lived. And she can imagine that had it all happened to her, she might've turned out the same. So who is she to stop him? And he continues to put up with her no matter the attitude she cops around him...So at least in that teeny aspect alone, maybe he's like Zakuro, after all.