Ichigo's most distinguishing feature is his spiky orange hair, a trait he has been ridiculed about for years on end. He is a fairly tall, lean-built young man with peach skin and brown eyes. He likes to wear tight clothes. He has a tendency to wear shirts patterned with the number 15 because his name is a homonym for the number. Since becoming a Shinigami, he has become noticeably more muscular, as noted by his sister Karin. When in his spiritual form, Ichigo wears the standard Shinigami attire, with the addition of a strap across his chest. Initially, it was a thick brown belt to hold his Zanpakutō sheath, but it later became a red rosary-like strap. It is shaped like a kite with a flat top and bottom. Ichigo's appearance has caused several people, including Jūshirō Ukitake, to note a similarity to Kaien Shiba, the former lieutenant of the 13th Division. After training in the Dangai, Ichigo's hair grows considerably, and he is noticeably taller, as stated by his friends. After Ichigo loses his Shinigami powers, his appearance reverts to the way it was before his Dangai training.
Seventeen months after defeating Aizen, Ichigo's overall appearance does not change, but he becomes taller and grows sideburns. After regaining his powers, Ichigo's Shinigami attire consists of a thicker strap across his chest. He has four black vertical lines on his forearms and black, tattoo-like bands crossing over his chest, wrists, and ankles. Similar bands, but with white ends, lie around his neck as collars.
When he was younger, Ichigo considered his mother to be the center of his world, always smiling when he was with Masaki and regularly holding her hand. Despite crying whenever he lost in a match at the dojo he attended, Ichigo started to smile again as soon as he saw Masaki when she came to pick him up. At a very young age, Ichigo heard his father saying his name means "to protect one thing," which instilled in him a desire to protect his mother. When his sisters were born, he began attending a dojo for the sake of protecting them. Since then, the number of people he wishes to protect has continued to grow, causing Ichigo to risk his life to protect both the people close to him and complete strangers.
As a teenager, Ichigo is stubborn, short-tempered, strong-willed, and impulsive. Despite claiming not to care about what other people think about him, he attempts to maintain a detached and "cool" image. He generally keeps his face set in a near-permanent scowl, with his eyebrows drawn together. His outspoken, hot-headed demeanor is a trait Ichigo himself has acknowledged, and if somebody picks a fight with him, he cannot help fighting back. He coldly refers to his teachers as "instructors". He is genuinely compassionate and empathetic towards others, promising to bring a Plus flowers and a toy plane, or soothing others when they become upset.
Ichigo is a capable student, ranked 23rd in his year at school, who studies regularly and does not neglect his schoolwork. He works as hard as he does to overcome the misconceptions many have about him based on his hair color and fighting. Ichigo hates fortune telling, horoscopes, feng shui, psychics, and anyone whose trade involves taking money from people for things they cannot see. He has difficulty remembering people's faces and names. Ichigo becomes extremely shy and uncomfortable around nude or immodestly dressed women, a fact both Yoruichi Shihōin and Rangiku Matsumoto have teased him for. Ichigo is often disrespectful when talking to those older than himself, calling Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto "gramps" and referring to several of the Shinigami captains by their given names without using honorifics.
When it comes to fighting, Ichigo has a complex sense of honor; he regularly seeks to exact revenge for the cruel actions of his opponent, such as instilling the fear of being murdered in Shrieker and cutting off the right arm of Yammy Llargo in retaliation for him ripping Yasutora Sado's right arm off. He often taunts and belittles his opponents when fighting, sometimes attacking without warning. Ichigo has a strong desire to win his fights, but in what he views as a legitimate manner. To this end, he has often refused the aid of his inner Hollow, even when knowing it would allow him to win. Ichigo's resolve in battle can waver at times, which can impede his fighting prowess, and goes into a state of depression and self-loathing when he loses a major battle or lets a friend down.
Ichigo despises those who mistreat their allies in any way, even if they are his own enemies. He is disgusted when an individual berates his/her own allies, such as when Yammy calls Ulquiorra Cifer, Nnoitra Gilga, and Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez "trash". He expresses anger towards those who go as far as attacking their own allies, stating he cannot forgive those who murder their own comrades.
Ichigo was born on July 15th as the son of Isshin Kurosaki and Masaki Kurosaki, 15 years before he became a Shinigami. His sisters Karin Kurosaki and Yuzu Kurosaki were born a few years later. When he was four, Ichigo joined a karate dojo, where he met and befriended Tatsuki Arisawa. Though Tatsuki beat Ichigo in every match they had, she would help Ichigo if he was being picked on by bullies and cheer him up if he was upset.
Ichigo was able to see Pluses for as long as he could remember. He could see them so clearly, as a child, he could not tell the living from the dead. This resulted in him appearing to other people to be looking at deserted places and talking to himself. This caused people to say he could see ghosts, though when Tatsuki asked him about this, he denied being able to see them.
On June 17th, when Ichigo was nine years old, he and his mother were walking home alongside one of Karakura Town's rivers, which was swollen from heavy rain. Seeing a girl near the river, Ichigo thought she was about to jump into it. Unable to tell the difference between ghosts and living people, Ichigo ran towards her to stop her, unaware the girl was the lure of the Hollow Grand Fisher. Masaki tried to stop him, but he did not listen. After failing to grab hold of the girl, Ichigo lost consciousness for a time. When he awoke, Masaki was lying on top of him, covered in blood. Starting the day after Masaki's death, Ichigo repeatedly skipped school to go to the riverbank where Masaki died. Tatsuki found him there, where he would stay from morning until night, wandering along the bank as if searching for his mother, squatting down if he was tired and then wandering some more.
One day, when Ichigo was twelve, prior to the Kurosaki Clinic opening, he heard the bell ring and answered the door to find a girl with her brother on her back. He had been in a car accident, and was covered in blood. The clinic did not have the equipment necessary to save him, and he died before an ambulance arrived to transfer him to Karakura Hospital. Sometime later, he learned the girl was Orihime Inoue.
Ichigo later entered Mashiba Junior High School. During this time, Ichigo finally defeated Tatsuki in a karate match, and had not had another match with her since. Ichigo regularly got into fights with thugs, due to the unusual color of his hair. During one of these fights, he received help from Yasutora Sado. Shortly after, Ichigo returned the favor when he rescued Sado from two gang members roughing him up. When the thugs later abducted Sado, Ichigo found them and knocked down their leader, Yokochini. Using Yokochini's phone to ring for an ambulance for each of the five thugs, he beat up all of them. After Sado was freed, they made a pact to protect and fight for each other.
Shortly before Ichigo became a Shinigami, he and Sado began attending Karakura High School, and their reputations preceded them. During a fight with a gang led by Reiichi Ōshima, Ichigo and Sado met Keigo Asano and Mizuiro Kojima, saving the former in the process. While Keigo was initially afraid of Ichigo and Sado, both he and Mizuiro later became friends with them.
Agent of the Shinigami arcEdit
After scaring some skateboarders away from a dead girl's resting place, Ichigo, apologizing to her, promises to bring her some new flowers to replace those damaged by the skaters, telling her to go to heaven quickly. That evening, Ichigo, seeing Rukia Kuchiki in his bedroom, initially mistakes her for a burglar, but when Ichigo realizes only he can see the intruder, he accepts Rukia is a ghost. When he refuses to believe her explanation about Shinigami, Rukia binds him with Kidō. As a Hollow attacks the house, Ichigo, upon hearing his sister's pleas for help, breaks free and rushes to stop the Hollow. Surprised at its monstrous appearance, Ichigo charges at it with a baseball bat in an attempt to release the captive Yuzu. Rukia frees Yuzu, but Ichigo's reckless actions force Rukia to shield him with her body, severely injuring her. Seeing Ichigo's determination to protect his family, Rukia offers to temporarily turn him into a Shinigami by piercing his chest with her Zanpakutō and transferring half of her power to him. Absorbing almost all of Rukia's power, Ichigo, making short work of the Hollow, collapses afterwards.
The following morning, Ichigo is horrified when he discovers Rukia is now a part of his class, and she has altered his family's memories of the attack. She insists he must help her do her job while she awaits the return of her powers. When Ichigo refuses, Rukia, forcing his soul out of his body, takes him to a park where a Hollow is about to attack. She persuades Ichigo to perform her duties. After undergoing some training with Rukia to improve his combat tactics, a Hollow bursts into his room. Rukia, who has taken to staying in his closet, forces Ichigo's soul out of his body. He cuts off part of the Hollow's mask, revealing it to be Sora Inoue. Explaining the origins of Hollows, Rukia states Orihime Inoue is in danger, as Hollows often attack their relatives. They rush to Orihime's apartment, where Ichigo manages to stop the Hollow before it eats Orihime's and Tatsuki's souls.
At Orihime's apartment, Ichigo initially panics when he sees her soul separated from her body, but Rukia explains there is still time to save her. Still intent on eating Orihime, the Hollow attacks. During Ichigo's subsequent fight with Acidwire, Orihime, stepping in between them, gets bitten. Her influence temporarily restores Sora's conscience, prompting him to purify himself with Ichigo's Zanpakutō. Rukia explains to Ichigo Hollows defeated by a Zanpakutō are purified and sent to Soul Society. As Ichigo and Orihime talk, Rukia, healing her, erases her memory of the event.
At school, Ichigo fends off Mizuiro Kojima's suggestions of a relationship with Rukia and Reiichi Ōshima's threats about his hair color. Ichigo notices Sado has a parakeet with him, and there is a spirit inside it. When Rukia confirms it is just a lonely Plus, which they should send to the Soul Society that night, Ichigo complains about missing another night of sleep. Upon returning home, Ichigo helps with the injured from a car accident, among them Sado. Ichigo notes the wound on his back was inflicted by a Hollow. The next morning, Ichigo tracks the spirit inside the parakeet using Reiraku in order to find Sado. When they find Sado, he runs away from them. Telling him it is dangerous to be by himself, Ichigo is distracted by an ill Karin. At Rukia's behest, he brings her home. Karin tells him she saw the Plus' memories, and he saw his mother being murdered. After placing her in her bed, Ichigo, rushing to help Sado, reflects on how long it had been since he last saw Karin cry.
Ichigo arrives to take over fighting Shrieker. When Rukia releases him from his body, he, injuring Shrieker, notices small creatures nearby, and is told they spit out explosive leeches. After asking Shrieker if he was the one who killed the child's parents, which he confirms, Ichigo, catching one of the leeches, slams it into Shrieker's mouth. When the Hollow refuses to trigger them, Ichigo, ripping out its tongue, stabs his sword into Shrieker's leg. Asking him how it feels to be unable to move or fight and if he can savor what it is like to be murdered, Ichigo cuts through his head, and Shrieker is pulled into Hell. After Rukia explains about Hell, she tells the Plus they will send him to Soul Society, and Ichigo says he might see his mother there.
The following day, Ichigo, noting Sado's memory has been erased, receives a Gikongan from Rukia, who, after explaining its purpose, forces him to try one. Unconvinced by the artificial soul's personality, Ichigo is forced to leave it in his body when they receive an order from Soul Society. After defeating the Hollow, a concerned Ichigo, rushing back, sees his body jump out of an upstairs window and run away extremely fast. As they chase after him, Rukia tells him it must be a Mod soul. As Rukia explains what she means to an angry Ichigo, he, asking if Rukia is alright with the idea of the Mod Souls being created and killed all for Soul Society's convenience, wonders how the Mod Soul must feel about being persecuted and gaining his body. Receiving a warning about a Hollow, they, hurrying to its location, find the Mod Soul is fighting it. Rushing to his aid, Ichigo reminds him he is using his body. As the two continue arguing, they defeat the Hollow together. When Kisuke Urahara removes the Mod Soul from Ichigo's body, Ichigo, asking him what he is going to do with it, asks who he is. When Rukia gives the Mod Soul to Ichigo, he thanks her for not throwing him away.
After failing to find a body to place the Mod Soul in, Ichigo, placing him in a plushie, decides to call him Kon. On the 16th of June, Ichigo, woken by Kon, scrambles to hide him and Rukia as Yuzu comes into the room to say Mizuiro is waiting for him. Apologizing to Mizuiro, he, noting his memory has been erased, remembers Rukia had told him Urahara must have worked hard. As Rukia leaves, Ichigo, complaining about Isshin not waking him up as usual, notices the date. That night, the Kurosakis hold a family meeting to discuss their trip to Masaki's grave the following day. Ichigo asks Rukia if he can take the day off from the Shinigami work, as it is the day Masaki was killed.
On the 17th of July, the Kurosaki family visits Masaki's grave. Annoyed that Rukia followed them, Ichigo, becoming angry when she asks if Masaki was killed by a Hollow, notices the same girl he saw the night Masaki died, and, running after her, tells Rukia he killed Masaki. At Masaki's grave, Ichigo, watching his family's antics, reflects on his mother's death and its impact on his family. Sensing the reiatsu of a Hollow, Ichigo realizes the twins are easy targets. As the Hollow attempts to eat Yuzu, Ichigo, arriving, cuts the twins free. Demanding to know why the girl he saw when Masaki died is there, he asks if she is controlled by the Hollow. When Rukia tells him the Hollow is called Grand Fisher and it uses the girl as a lure to trick and devour Humans who have high levels of spiritual power, Ichigo, realizing Grand Fisher killed his mother, lunges at it. Stopping Rukia from interfering, he, insisting on fighting alone, instructs her to mind his sisters.
Struggling against Grand Fisher, Ichigo is subjected to the Hollow's Transcribe ability. Transforming his lure into an image of Masaki, Grand Fisher explains about his ability. As he pierces Ichigo's chest, Ichigo, stabbing the Hollow's chest. grabs his arm, saying he has finally caught him, and slashes open his chest. Transferring its form into the lure, Grand Fisher escapes. As Rukia tries to convince Ichigo he cannot fight him any more, he, insisting he can and the Hollow is still not dead yet, soon collapses. Using most of her strength to heal his stomach wound, Rukia leaves his other injuries. When Ichigo awakens, in his Human body, in great pain, Rukia reminds him the wounds his soul receives will show up when he returns to his body. When Ichigo asks her if he lost, she tells him he won, since the Hollow fled and nobody died. Saying Grand Fisher is not dead, Ichigo walks off.
When Ichigo, at Masaki's grave, apologizes for not being able to avenge her, Isshin notes the time has gone by quickly, and it has already been ten years since Masaki died. When Ichigo corrects his error, Isshin states he was "so close". When Ichigo loudly complains about this, Isshin says Masaki can rest easily if she sees him being so lively. When he starts smoking a cigarette, Ichigo says he thought he quit smoking when Karin and Yuzu were born. Isshin explains he smokes on this one occasion, as the only time Masaki complimented his looks while they were dating is when she saw him smoking. When Ichigo asks why nobody blames him for her death, Isshin, dismissing the suggestion, says Masaki would be mad at him, and she would gladly die to protect her child. Reminding Ichigo he is the one the woman he loved gave her life to protect, he, telling him to live his life well, leaves. Asking Rukia if her powers are returning, Ichigo asks her to allow him to remain a Shinigami for a while longer regardless. He says he wants to become stronger so he can defeat Hollows, protect those who are targeted, and defeat Grand Fisher; otherwise, he will not be able to face Masaki.
While Yuzu and Isshin are watching Don Kanonji's Ghost Bust TV program one Wednesday evening, Ichigo asks Karin why she is not watching it with them. She tells Ichigo she can see spirits about as clearly as he can, and is not interested in the ghost show. Remembering she saw the Hollow who attacked the house when he first met Rukia, Ichigo realizes she might be able to see Shinigami too. The next morning at school, Orihime, performing Don Kanonji's pose as Ichigo arrives in class, asks him to do the pose with her. As Ichigo's friends all do the pose, Ichigo tells Keigo he is not going to the live recording of Ghost Bust at the abandoned hospital in Karakura, despite his attempts to convince him to go. The following Wednesday, Ichigo accompanies his family to watch Ghost Bust being filmed. When Orihime apologizes to him for trying to get him to do Don Kanonji's pose, he, telling her it is okay, reveals Keigo and Mizuiro know he despises it, but yet still do it anyway. When asked why he came, he, stating Isshin and Yuzu are huge fans of the show, says they would look pitiful if just the two of them went. When Orihime tells him he is so kind, Ichigo dismisses it as normal.
Telling him he must be tired from his dual life, Rukia instructs him to use this chance to relax. Surprised she is concerned about his health, Ichigo, asking if there really is a spirit in the hospital, says the Shinigami would have dealt with it already. Rukia says it is likely to be a Jibakurai, a soul on its way to becoming a Hollow. When Ichigo asks Rukia if they should perform Konsō on it to prevent it from becoming a Hollow, she says it takes months to turn into a Hollow. She says to do it after the show to avoid trouble in case of a struggle, but Ichigo is unconvinced. Meanwhile, Don Kanonji jams his staff into the partially open hole in the Jibakurai's chest. As Ichigo tries to stop him, he is caught by security. Urahara frees Ichigo's Shinigami form from his body, allowing him to knock Kanonji away from the Jibakurai. As Ichigo realizes the medium can see him, the Jibakurai vanishes in an explosion. As Kanonji promises to send Ichigo to heaven too, Rukia shouts at him to look up, where they see the spirit reforming into a Hollow on top of the hospital. As Ichigo and Kanonji bicker, the Hollow charges at them. Ichigo fends off its attack, and when the Hollow gets its head stuck in a wall, Ichigo drags Kanonji inside.
Ichigo insists they stay inside to avoid the audience being caught up in the fighting. When the Hollow attacks again, Ichigo's Zanpakutō becomes stuck in the ceiling. Ichigo realizes he never thought about the corridors being too confined to use his sword in. When the Hollow glues Ichigo's hands together, Kanonji, jamming its mouth open with his staff, frees Ichigo's blade. When Ichigo's sword becomes embedded in the Hollow's shoulder, it drags him up to the roof. Freeing himself, Ichigo takes advantage of the open space to defeat the Hollow. When Kanonji praises him, Ichigo, telling him to stop his antics, explains it is the same spirit Kanonji thought he had sent to heaven. Stating regretting it is pointless, as he did not know, Ichigo directs Kanonji to the crowd. Kanonji thanks him, complimenting his courage, quick wits, and strength, and asks that they work together in the future. When Ichigo agrees to help him once in a while, Kanonji forces him to take a Don Kanonji fan club card, signed "to my #1 pupil".
The following day, Rukia helps Ichigo and his friends get out of trouble for their actions at the abandoned hospital when they are brought before the principal and Kagine, who states their escapades were broadcast live nationwide. That afternoon, Ichigo, answering the door, meets Don Kanonji. Closing and locking the door, he demands to know how he found out about his house. When Kanonji reveals he invited Rukia along, Ichigo realizes it was her who told him where he lived. Seeing Kanonji, Yuzu knocks Ichigo over while opening the door. When Rukia's Denreishinki alerts her to a Hollow, they rush off to fight it.
After numerous incidents of arriving at the supposed site of a Hollow attack, only to find there is no Hollow, Ichigo and Rukia bicker. When Ichigo asks if there is another Shinigami defeating the Hollows before him, Rukia tells him Shinigami are strictly sorted, and it should not be the case. Ichigo tries to keep away from Rukia at school to avoid the rumors since their appearance on Ghost Bust. While discussing his high grades with Keigo and Mizuiro, Ichigo notes his orange hair causes him a lot of trouble, as older students pick on him and teachers watch him closely, so he studies so the school does not complain about him. Rukia drags Ichigo off, prompting him to complain about the rumors regarding them. When she tells him to complain later, as there is a Hollow, Ichigo tells her he will not forgive her if it is not there this time, but they find nothing. After another incident following school, Ichigo tells Rukia to do something about the problem as she drags his body from its hiding place. The pair are approached by Uryū Ishida, who asks Ichigo if it is correct he can see spirits, which Ichigo denies is even possible. When a new Hollow appears, Uryū, killing it, introduces himself, saying he hates Shinigami and Ichigo.
At school, Ichigo, reflecting upon his encounter with Uryū, wonders why he would say such things to a complete stranger and why Uryū was angry. Realizing he cannot remember his full name, Ichigo lists off possible names out loud. Overhearing him, Orihime, stating Uryū is in their class, takes him to the handicrafts club to show him Uryū. When Orihime asks what happened between Ichigo and Uryū, Ichigo dismisses it as no big deal. After school, Ichigo follows Uryū as he leaves. Asking him if he intends to follow him home, Uryū notes he had noticed him spying on him from the classroom doorway. When Ichigo applauds him, Uryū states it is due to Ichigo's inability to restrain his spiritual power, and he lacks the ability to sense reiatsu, as evidenced by him not noticing Uryū until that day. Revealing he noticed Ichigo's unusually high spiritual power and his acquisition of Shinigami powers, Uryū, inviting Ichigo to fight him, says Shinigami are unnecessary in the Human World.
Though Ichigo ridicules the idea, Uryū succeeds in convincing him to fight him, and he uses Kon to free his Shinigami form. Using some Hollow bait to cause Hollows to gather in Karakura Town, Uryū states the one who defeats the most Hollows within twenty-four hours wins. When Ichigo, angered by this, demands to know why he is exposing the town's residents to such danger, Uryū tells him not to worry, as they will kill all the Hollows. As Ichigo tries to make him undo it, Uryū tells him Hollows will soon flood the town, and he should try to protect as many people as possible. When Uryū tells him Hollows tend to prefer people with high spiritual power, Ichigo runs off to find Karin. After slaying his third Hollow and saving a pair of Pluses, Ichigo, struggling to remember where Karin is, sends Kon to get Rukia's Denreishinki to aid in reacting to the Hollows. Defeating the Hollows between the Kurosaki Clinic and the last place where he saw Karin, Ichigo thinks it should be safe for her now.
Having found Uryū, Ichigo bickers with Kon when he arrives. Unable to attract their attention by shouting, Uryū fires an arrow at Ichigo, who, blocking it, insists it is a battle between him and Uryū, and the amount of Hollows they beat is irrelevant. As Kon points out there is a large crack forming in the sky, and Uryū begins firing arrows into the group of Hollows, Ichigo tells him there are too many, and they need to come up with a strategy. Asking him if he is afraid, Uryū charges towards the Hollows. When Rukia explains the fall of the Quincy at the hands of the Shinigami, Ichigo, running after Uryū, attacks several Hollows around him. When Ichigo, telling Uryū he does not know or care about whether the Shinigami or Quincy were right, expresses frustration at his methods, Uryū tells him he thought the Shinigami were correct until his sensei was killed in front of him. Telling Ichigo of his sensei's attempts to convince the Shinigami to work together with the remaining Quincy and how he died fighting a group of huge Hollows without achieving that goal, Uryū says he must prove the strength of the Quincy to the Shinigami. Pointing out his sensei's wish was to work together, Ichigo, asking if he will do that now, says fighting back to back is the best way to deal with the situation.
As the two begrudgingly work together, Ichigo, telling him his approach to their fight is endangering the people he wants to protect, says he will not forgive him for that. They agree to beat each other up after the Hollows have been dealt with, but as they prepare attack a horde of Hollows, a Menos Grande appears. As Ururu Tsumugiya, Tessai Tsukabishi, Jinta Hanakari, and Urahara arrive to fight the Hollows, Urahara tells Ichigo to concentrate on fighting the Menos. Seeing its size, Ichigo, questioning if it is in fact a Hollow, is shocked to see it eating the nearby Hollows. Saying there is no way they can figure out how to fight such a monster and they will have to simply cut it repeatedly until it succumbs to its injuries, Ichigo, charging towards the Menos, attacks its leg, but is knocked back by the unfazed Menos.
Noticing Ichigo's power flows into his bow when he touches it, Uryū, planning to fire an enlarged arrow at the Menos, tells Ichigo to increase his power to maximum. Stating he never controls his energy output, Ichigo says it must be at maximum all the time. When the Menos starts to charge a Cero, Ichigo, rushing towards it, blocks the Cero with his Zanpakutō. His power increasing as he resists the Cero, Ichigo repels the attack, injuring the Menos in the process. As the Menos retreats, Ichigo, claiming victory, collapses as his Zanpakutō begins to destabilize. Noting it will explode, Uryū begins to dissipate the energy by firing arrows into the sky, injuring himself. Uryū tells him to make sure he lives so he can beat him later. The following day, when Rukia tells Ichigo not to pay attention to Uryū's injuries, Ichigo denies being worried. Later, when he overhears Keigo telling Mizuiro he saw Uryū talking to himself the previous day, believing it to be related to a theater, Ichigo is thankful Keigo is an idiot. Asking Uryū to join them for lunch, Ichigo later regrets it, due to the atmosphere which prevails over their meal.
That night, Ichigo, taking the leftovers from dinner to give to Rukia, finds she is gone. At 2:00 a.m., Ichigo, wondering whether she is going to return that night, notes it would be nice not to have Shinigami duties to carry out for once. Hearing a muffled noise, Ichigo finds Kon gagged and tied to the back of the toilet bowl. When Ichigo asks why he was tied up, Kon, saying Rukia is in big trouble, shows Ichigo a note she left on his desk. Confused by the message, which tells them she has to leave and they should go into hiding instead of looking for her, Ichigo decides to change into his Shinigami form and find her. Realizing he cannot change form without Rukia, Ichigo demands a reluctant Kon change him into a Shinigami. Appearing at the window, Urahara changes him into his Shinigami form.
As Lieutenant Renji Abarai attacks Rukia, Ichigo, arriving, attacks him. When Renji notes the size of Ichigo's Zanpakutō, Ichigo replies he thought it was large compared to Rukia's, but there had not been anyone else to compare it to. Realizing he is the Human who took Rukia's Shinigami powers, Renji, attacking him, asks Ichigo what the name of his Zanpakutō is. When Ichigo, stating he has not named his sword, asks if they actually give them names, Renji activates his Shikai, surprising Ichigo with the change of form of his Zanpakutō. Leaping into the air, he slashes Ichigo's shoulder.
As Renji, explaining about the Shikai form of Zanpakutō, moves to attack him, Rukia attempts to stop him so Ichigo can flee, but Ichigo's reiatsu increases, and he, injuring the surprised Renji, quickly overwhelms him. As Ichigo attempts to end the fight, Byakuya severs his sword's tip, leaving Ichigo stunned. As he prepares for Byakuya's subsequent attack, Byakuya, appearing behind him, stabs him. Falling to the ground, Ichigo, wondering whether he was attacked from the front or from behind, is stabbed again by Byakuya. As Byakuya and Rukia talk about Ichigo, he, grabbing Byakuya's leg, tells him not to talk about him as if he is dead. As Byakuya tells him to let go, Ichigo instructs the captain to look at him when he is talking so he can hear him. Kicking Ichigo's hand away from her brother, Rukia, telling him he should know his place, tells Byakuya she is ready to leave. As Ichigo protests, Renji tells him to stop making things worse. When Rukia tells Byakuya there is no point in deliberately killing Ichigo, as he will soon stop breathing on his own, Ichigo asks if this is a joke, prompting Rukia to state if he tries to follow her, she will never forgive him. As she tells him to conserve what energy he has left so he may live a moment longer, Byakuya, acquiescing to Rukia's request, states Ichigo should die shortly due to his injuries, but if he does survive, he will no longer possess any Shinigami powers. As they leave, Ichigo, noting he cannot move or speak, reflects upon how he came to protect Rukia, but instead she protected him again. As Ichigo contemplates his injuries in the rain, Urahara approaches him.
When Ichigo awakens in Urahara's shop, Urahara tells him his wounds are not yet fully healed, and if he moves too much, he may die. When Ichigo asks him about Uryū's condition, Urahara states Uryū's injuries were treated on the spot, and when he left, he was worried about Ichigo, stating Ichigo was the only one who could beat the Shinigami and save Rukia. When Ichigo says he cannot do anything, as Rukia has been taken to Soul Society and he cannot follow, Urahara reveals he can send Ichigo there if he trains with Urahara for the next ten days, revealing Soul Society typically allows a grace period of one month before executions. Saying Ichigo will die if he goes there in his current condition, he reveals he purposely allowed Ichigo to fight Renji and Byakuya so he would realize this after having fought them himself. He states it will take seven days to open the gate to Soul Society, leaving Ichigo with thirteen days in Soul Society to rescue Rukia. Though unsure if he can become strong enough in ten days, Ichigo agrees to Urahara's deal.
Giving Ichigo some pills to take every hour, Urahara, saying he will recover from his injuries by dinnertime, sends him to school for the final day of the term. At school, Ichigo notes how nobody appears to remember Rukia. As Misato dismisses the class for summer, Ichigo, noting Uryū's absence, thinks he would remember Rukia. As he walks home after dismissing Keigo's invitation to spend the holiday with him, he meets Orihime, who, asking him where Rukia is, notes everyone has forgotten about her, but she believed Ichigo would know. Explaining the situation to her, Ichigo is surprised she can see his Shinigami form. Noting Ichigo has already made up his mind to rescue Rukia, Orihime, telling him to go save her, insists she does not want her friend to die either. Thanking her, Ichigo, going to the Urahara Shop, shows Urahara his healed wounds. Telling Urahara he told Isshin he would be sleeping over at a friend's house, he asks Urahara to teach him well.
In Urahara's training area, Ichigo's soul form is freed from his body, and he finds it difficult to move. Urahara reveals Byakuya destroyed the source of his power, leaving him without any Shinigami powers, and he must restore these in order to fight the Shinigami. Explaining about Reiryoku, stating the more one's Reiryoku rises, the sharper the movements of their spiritual body become, he says if Ichigo can manage to move even better with his spiritual body than he can with his mortal body, they will have completely recovered his Reiryoku. Urahara has Ururu Tsumugiya attack Ichigo, and she lunges at him, creating a large cloud of dust and debris. Emerging from the dust, Ichigo runs away from Ururu after another near miss. Realizing he is able to run away from her, Ichigo attempts to dodge her attacks directly. Successfully dodging, Ichigo attacks Ururu by trying to hit her headgear lightly, believing the weight difference will do the rest. When he hits and cuts her face, Ururu kicks him into a rocky outcropping. Catching Ichigo before he hits it, Tessai cushions him from the impact.
Congratulating him on clearing the lesson, Urahara asks if Ichigo is still having trouble breathing or moving, which he is not. As Urahara says he has successfully recovered his spirit energy, and the soul tends to gain the Reiryoku faster when it is in danger of being destroyed, Tessai, cutting Ichigo's Chain of Fate, pins him to the ground. Telling him the chain has already begun to corrode from the severed end, Urahara states if it reaches his chest, Ichigo will become a Hollow, but he can avoid this by becoming a Shinigami instead. The point of this lesson, which Urahara calls "Shattered Shaft," is to restore Ichigo's Shinigami powers. Dropped to the bottom of a shaft, he is bound with a Kin spell, and Urahara tells him to scale the vertical sides of the deep shaft. Revealing there is a gas at the bottom of the shaft which speeds up the corrosion process to at most 72 hours, he tells Ichigo to become a Shinigami and climb out of the hole before that, or else he will become a Hollow, and they will destroy him
After the corrosion of the chain's fifth link, Ichigo notes the process alternates between a few minutes of painful corrosion and a few hours of dormancy. Only able to attempt to escape during the dormant phases, Ichigo unsuccessfully tries to run up the wall. Asking him if he is hungry, Jinta Hanakari explains a soul feeling hungry is a sign they will soon become a Hollow. Later, as Ichigo wonders how long he has been in the hole for and how he can get out of it, Jinta runs down the shaft's wall with a platter of fruit for him. When Ichigo, denying he is hungry, says the chain is still long, Jinta reveals it has been seventy hours since he entered the shaft, and the final corrosion phase is stronger than the earlier ones. As the remaining length of the chain begins to corrode, a hole opens in Ichigo's chest, and a mask begins to form over his face. Urahara explains the mask forming before his body reforms shows Ichigo is resisting the transformation.
Awakening inside his consciousness, Ichigo sees a man standing on a building. Surprised that Ichigo does not recognize him, the man says his name, but Ichigo cannot hear it. Stating it is sad, the man asks how many times he has to tell him his name before he is able to hear it, as he thought nobody in this world knew him better than Ichigo. When Ichigo falls from the building, the man, following him, states he should not worry, as Shinigami control death. As Ichigo tells him he is not currently a Shinigami, the man, telling him to focus the Reishi around him underneath his feet to stand on, urges Ichigo to remember a time when he stopped in mid-air as a Shinigami. He tells Ichigo Byakuya destroyed the powers given to him by Rukia, but Ichigo has his own Shinigami powers, which were hidden deep in his soul and awakened by Rukia's power. As the world crumbles around him, he instructs Ichigo to find it.
With the buildings of his inner world dissolving into countless boxes, Ichigo, falling through a fissure into water, wonders how he can find his own powers. Remembering Uryū stating Shinigami have red Reiraku, he uses this to find a box containing a Zanpakutō's hilt. Telling him this time he ought to hear his name, the man urges him to take the hilt. As Ichigo struggles to pull out the Zanpakutō, back in the shaft, the Kidō restraining Ichigo breaks apart. When Tessai activates the next stage of the Kidō, Bankin, an explosion erupts from the shaft. As the smoke clears, Ichigo, wearing a Hollow mask and Shinigami clothes, uses his still broken Zanpakutō to smash the Hollow mask. Congratulating him on his success, Urahara says he is now a complete Shinigami. Having sworn to kill Urahara when he got out of the shaft, Ichigo hits him in the eye with the sword's hilt. Urahara starts the third lesson, which is simply to knock the hat off of Urahara's head. As Ichigo proposes a five minute time limit, Urahara draws a blade from within his cane.
Overwhelming Ichigo, Urahara, revealing his sword is a Zanpakutō, activates Benihime's Shikai. As Ichigo remembers Renji using his Shikai during their fight, Urahara, telling him every Zanpakutō has a name, cuts through the remains of Ichigo's blade until just the hilt remains, saying if he continues to fight with just the hilt, he will kill him. As Ichigo, thinking he is going to die, runs away, Urahara continues to attack him. Ichigo sees the man from his inner world again, who, asking why Ichigo ran when he has not yet called him, reveals his name is Zangetsu. Stopping in his tracks, Ichigo, turning towards Urahara, calls out Zangetsu, activating his Shikai. Looking at the new form of his Zanpakutō, Ichigo, telling Urahara he might not be able to hold back, swings Zangetsu at him, who uses Chikasumi no Tate. As the dust settles, a hat-less Urahara, stating he would have lost an arm if it were not for Chikasumi no Tate, says he did not expect so much from one swing.
After completing Urahara's training, Ichigo has a relatively normal summer holiday while waiting for the gate to Soul Society to be opened. On the first of August, Ichigo and his friends gather for a fireworks festival, where they catch up. Isshin and the twins, running up to Ichigo, knock him.
Story of Joining Sora's TeamEdit
Ichigo met Riku when they were both fighting each other when thinking that Riku was responsible for the Heartless, Nobodies, Dream Eaters (Nightmares), Subspacers, Castlevenoms, Zelnemies, and Unversed for appearing. Then when Slender Man attacked both of them, they worked together to find the Keyhole. When they both received a message from Skelita Calaveras, she was with Karin Kurosaki who was helping her, and telling that they figured out that Ichigo's sword holds the Keyhole. After everyone met, everyone began to fight The Dream Catcher, who was more bigger and creepier than before. After the showdown, Ichigo's sister asked to join the team, but he wouldn't let her join without protection, so he joined also.