-> ''"Because I'm Beautiful"''
-->--'''Yumichika's catch phrase'''

-> ''"The Nail That Sticks Up"''
-->-- ''"First Chapter of the Series"''

An Epic Fanfic series by Tomas The Betrayer, Hammered Down is an alternate view of Soul Society, the war against Hollows, and the kind of situations and people that would need to exist to make Heaven into a militocracy divided into slums.

It's not a nice place to die.

The story begins (at first) as a sort of prequel, detailing Rukia's tribulations adapting to her new life in the Gotei 13 and, more importantly, to the Noble House of Kuchiki after being adopted by Captain of Squad 6 Kuchiki Byakuya. She soon learns that just because she has left the ghetto doesn't mean danger no longer follows behind her, and she may be far beyond her depth. It soon encompasses all the characters of Bleach, from the captains to Ichigo and Co. including their enemies, going from around 50 years before the main plot and taking a complete divergence from canon storyline just after the end of the Soul Society Arc. It's a tale of dark plots thousand of years old, the sense of love, the unfairness of power, sacrifice, the need for peace and what it can cost to maintain it.

And it is awesome.

It's a massive {{Doorstopper}} (1022 pages at size 12) that was first constructed in equally massive chapters until it was retooled from 14 to 36 chapters. While at first look it may appear to be a sort of Coming Of Age Story and some romance...thing (the Rukia/Ichimaru is as far from romance as it's possible), it is in fact an action/suspense/guile-packed saga with bits of dry humor, drama and a lot of grayness thrown in. No side is truly evil and irredeemable but abounds with Well Intentioned Extremists who are convinced that ''their'' solution is the only one feasible and are ready to go any length to achieve/mantain it.

The story is told in continuous POV, sometimes going to the same scene again and again, with many chapters devoting themselves to [[{{Flashback}} flashbacks]]. It is also noteworthy for bringing most of the secondary characters to the front and making them [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome undeniable]] [[WorldOfBadass badasses]] (as Yumichika in the quote exemplifies) and retooling many scenes in more dark, complicated plots. Tends to gloss over the actions of the canon universe (just making a handwave to the Soul Society Arc) unless it's to give a different perspective of the situation or explain alternate actions that don't change much of the plot... that is until the end of the Rescue Rukia arc where things just go out of control.

The complete story can be found ''[[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/4970664/1/Hammered_Down here]]''

The Sequel, ''Lifted Up'', can be found ''[[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/7839152/1/Lifted_Up here]]''


Please know that reading any spoiler tags beyond this point WILL result in the work's most brilliant and shocking twists being spoiled. You have been warned.


[[folder: Hammered Down ]]
* ActionSurvivor: Keigo and Mizuiro, as per canon. To the point that they not only manage to save Kanoji from Barragan, but get him to let them live only to [[RefugeInAudacity troll him with the peace offering.]]
* AffablyEvil: Aizen thanks the Gotei for coming out to battle him in the Fake Karakura [[spoiler: after revealing that the whole thing was a trap while the Hollow Army lay waste to Seireitei.]] He even says that it was fun.
* AboveGoodAndEvil:
* ActionGirl: Rukia, Yoruichi, Nemu, Nanao, etc. Pretty much any female shinigami who get the spotlight with very few exceptions.
* AloofBigBrother: Same characterization for Kuchiki as in the manga, but explored to its logical ramifications, showing his [[InformedAbility (very hidden)]] dere side of Kuudere.
* AnyoneCanDie: [[spoiler: Or be permanently depowered]]
* AuthorityEqualsAsskicking: All the organizations from shinigami to Hollows are [[NotSoDifferent curiously]] maintained together under the threat of complete annihilation by their leaders (Aizen/Yamamoto).
* BestServedCold : A conspiracy a thousand years in the making...
* BigDamnHeroes: [[spoiler: Ginrei Kuchiki]] who came like a thunder in the tick of the moment, along with HeroicSacrifice and YouShallNotPass.
** Kenpachi [[spoiler: in Shikai crashes through a wall, crashes into Segunda Etapa Ulquiorra, and crashes out another wall.]]
* BlackComedy
* BolivianArmyEnding: While not the ending per se [[spoiler: the assault on the King's dimension ended with half of the Royal Guard completely laid to waste and forced to retreat while Fenrir Segunda Etapa and Perfect Hollow Aizen face each other over Fenris' next meal. ]]. Also see the Three Heavenly Warriors vs. [[spoiler: Wonderweiss/Yog-Sothoth]]
* BrainBleach: “Sitting naked on the table was Rukia Kuchiki, an evil grin stretching her face,” because Nemu just transferred Mayuri into her old gigai. [[{{Squick}} Enjoy.]]
* CallBack: Many. Renji makes it a battle tactic with [[spoiler: Yammy’s reattached arm]]. Then there are the little canon details that the author [[ChekhovsGun exploits]]...
* CampStraight: Yumichika.
* CanisMajor: [[spoiler: Fenrir, the world devourer]]
* CantCatchUp: Chad still can’t fight on equal terms with Espada. See [[spoiler: GrievousHarmWithABody]] for details.
* TheCasanova: Yumichika, the legendary BEAUTIFUL shinigami, who can charm the pants out of any woman [[spoiler: except for Rukia]].
* TheChessmaster : Aizen, obviously. But really [[spoiler: Retsu Unohana]]
* ConscienceMakesYouGoBack : [[spoiler: Ichimaru and baby Rukia.]]
* CrapsackWorld: This is the biggest motivation for all the factions: they want to change it. If only they could decide which way is the "right" way.
** [[spoiler: They do and it became more like a Fluffy Cloud Heaven instead of a 7 Samurai set]]
* DeconstructionFic.
* {{Depower}}: [[spoiler: Yamamoto, Kyoraku, Ukitake, Komamura. Subverted with Soifon.]]
* DidYouJustFlipOffCthulhu: [[spoiler: Hisagi]], did you just take Yachiru hostage? [[spoiler: And make Kenpachi sign off from]] the biggest fight in the history of ever?!
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: Did [[spoiler: Izuru]] just [[spoiler: GravityMaster]] Komamura’s Bankai, [[spoiler: Grimmjow]] take on Barragan to defend Aizen, and [[spoiler: Rukia]] just [[CurbStompBattle Curb Stomp]] the Old Man of the Mountain?! In a word, [[MindScrew yes.]]
* TheDogWasTheMastermind : [[spoiler: Retsu Unohana]]
* TheDreaded: Ichimaru for Rukia
* EarnYourHappyEnding: [[spoiler: And it was worth it]]
* EldritchAbomination: In exchange of the [[SurprisinglyEliteCannonFodder Canon Espada]], here the vasto lorde are defined as "Entire Nations Of Souls" and are more like AnthropomorphicPersonifications of the 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse than living beings, whose power is so massive that [[spoiler: the weakest of them managed to stop 4 of the strongest captains while still holding back, and 3 of them laid waste to battalions of captain-level shinigami without difficulty]].
* EvilVsEvil: [[spoiler: Fenrir Segunda Etapa vs Perfect Hollow Aizen after being trapped in the King's dimension]] can count in an epic way.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: [[RewatchBonus Subtle at first read]], but ''all over the place''.
* ForTheEvulz : Gin. Motives? What motives? He just loves to screw with people's minds and watch the world burn. [[spoiler: That is, if you don't take in consideration her love for Matsumoto and his desire for her happiness and well being.]]
* TheExtremistWasRight: Say what you will about Old Man Yamamoto but before him things were ''pretty shitty'' to normal souls and brutality was '''the''' rule instead of an unfortunate consequence. He may be an old jackass with full Kick The Dog moments but at ''least'' he tried.
* GambitPileup: UpToEleven
* GenocideBackfire
* [[GodIsEvil God is Well Intentioned Extremist]]: Utopia ''will'' happen and if it requires the whole world to burn, so be it.
* GoOutWithASmile: [[spoiler: Yumichika]] realized he had done everything he could do in the (after)life, the culmination of all his plans and goals, so he decided to refuse Orohime healing for a worthy death [[spoiler: but only after his body was impeccable. After all, just because he was killed in apocalyptic battle for the future of the world, after facing a [[PhysicalGod Vasto Lorde]] is not excuse to not be BEAUTIFUL]]
* GreyAndGreyMorality
* GrievousHarmWithABody: [[spoiler: Chad to Yammy]] with the latter’s [[CallBack severed arm]], [[CrowningMomentOfFunny because Hierro is too damn thick.]]
* HiddenDepths: Even Kenpachi can pick out the flaw to Yamamoto’s peacekeeping.
* HollywoodCyborg: [[spoiler: Hanatarō Yamada, because... Kurotsuchi is an asshole with overbudget]].
* HorsemenOfTheApocalypse: The vasto lorde.
* IAmLegion: In a nutshell what the vasto lorde [[spoiler: and Aizen]] are.
* Myth/JapaneseMythology
* KarmicDeath: It was just poetic beauty the way [[spoiler: Kurotsuchi was brutally tortured to death by one of his experiments]]. Too bad that [[spoiler: according to epilogue, he may come back]]
* KickTheDog: Gin’s main hobby, apparently. He especially has it out for Rukia; see RantInducingSlight. Most notable during a Kido display and the [[spoiler: subsequent loss of a student’s hand.]] Ouch.
* KidSamurai: Hitsugaya and mocked merciless by Matsumoto for this.
* LadyOfWar: Rukia in the first chapters, then it came the turn of Nemu, Hinamori and even Harribel. But the biggest example is Unohana who around chapter 32 shows ''why'' she is so feared in the Gotei 13 [[spoiler: and why you don't shackle Amaterasu to a gang of bullies]]
* LeeroyJenkins: Kenpachi (and in a lesser way Yachiru) are successful examples of this trope.
* LethalJokeCharacter: Yumichika, with his flamboyant attitude and queer disposition, is considered most of the time to be a one-joke shinigami until the chips [[CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass are]] [[AwakeningTheSleepingGiant down]]. There is a reason ''why '' unbreakable Rule #3 of [[BloodKnight Squadron 11]] is "Do NOT hit Yumichika Ayasegawa in the face".
* MadnessMantra: [[spoiler: WHY WON'T THEY DIE, THEY WON'T STAY DEAD, THEY WON'T STAY DEAD...]].
* ManchurianAgent:
* MemoryGambit: When the villains are [[spoiler: so generous with memory spells, it's unavoidable]].
* MindScrew: As soon as [[spoiler: Unohana]] starts singing, [[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu expect]] [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters many]] [[ManchurianAgent of]] [[MemoryGambit these.]] [[SerialEscalation A minimum of three per chapter.]]
* TheMole: Beside the obvious ones we got [[spoiler: Momo, Renji, Kira, Hisagi]] not to mention the probably hundreds of other offscreen collaborators to bring down Soul Society.
* MoodWhiplash: It can go from [[TearJerker brutally tearful]] to hilarious to introspective to [[NarmCharm narmtastic awesome]] in a single chapter. Sometimes in a single gorram paragraph.
* MoralityPet: Hisana for Byakuya, who managed to defrost him before the beggining of the series, and Matsumoto for Gin, to the point [[spoiler: that he betrayed Aizen, destroying his plans because he dared to hurt her]].
* MoreThanMindControl : Aizen and Gin are experts at this.
* MrFanservice: Hitsugaya, [[NoYay within his first two weeks of Captaincy]], to every Zanpakuto we're privy to the POV of.
* NecessarilyEvil: Genryusai Shigekuni Yamamoto to shinigami and Aizen to Hollows [[spoiler: at least until the epilogue]]
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: How most fights with Yamamoto tend to end such as [[spoiler: his brutal and graphic beating of Unohana to within an inch of her life thousand of years before, which cost her an eye and her sanity.]]
* OutGambitted: [[spoiler: Urahara outgamibts everyone]]
* OrganTheft: An apparent risk of sleeping with [[spoiler: Kurotsuchi Nemu. Hanataro]] didn’t seem to mind too much.
* RantInducingSlight: A mental rant, but still the sight of Rukia trailing after her adoptive brother [[spoiler: after Gin raised her as an infant in the Rukongai]] resulted in this for Captain Smiles… alongside a good fifty years of KickTheDog moments.
* ReasonYouSuckSpeech: Aaroniero gives one to Nnoitra after destroying Santa Teresa.
* RedShirtArmy: The usual shinigami tends to be left in this category more often than not, although there are several exceptions during the fic. Played straight with [[spoiler: the Zero squadron, who were literally mowed down with ease by 3 vasto lorde, Aizen, Tousen and Unohana. And neither Aizen nor Stark were going all out]]
* RedEyesTakeWarning: Gin, thanks to his past as [[spoiler: a Hollow]]. Which is why he mantain his eyes semi-closed at all times. That and because he loves to screw with people's mind.
* ReviveKillsZombie: Kanoji tries this on Barragan. [[spoiler: [[WrongGenreSavvy And fails.]] [[ChekhovsBoomerang Instead, it heals Ginrei.]]]]
* SugarAndIcePersonality: [[UptoEleven Kuchiki Byakuya]]
* TakenForGranite: The effects of [[spoiler: Nanao's shikai]]. Poor [[spoiler: Hinamori]]- it's unsure whether escaping the subsequent [[LiterallyShatteredLives smashing Tobiume received]] is [[AndIMustScream any better]].
* ThisIsReality : Notably, Unohana telling Ichigo he ''isn't'' the hero of some manga.
* ThouShaltNotKill: Kon, since the author remembers his earliest appearances. Doesn’t make him any more pleasant for [[spoiler: Loly and Menoly]] to deal with.
* TookALevelInBadass: ALL THE CHARACTERS. Even characteristics like Nanao's glasses are given near StoryBreakerPower levels. Not to mention Aizen, the vasto lorde or [[spoiler: Retsu Unohana's apocalyptic Bankai]]
* TraumaCongaLine: Rukia’s been stalked by Gin for fifty years, Orihime in Hueco Mundo ([[spoiler: and still stuck with Ulquiorra afterwards]]), [[spoiler: Ulquiorra]] [[CrowningMomentOfFunny can’t kill anyone]] (there are [[BlatantLies perfectly reasonable]] [[NextTierPowerUp explanations]], mind you), [[spoiler: Unohana was beaten for “insubordination” by Yamamoto for a good 2,000 years]]... Oh dear.
* {{Troll}}: Y’know the big, climactic fight we got in [[spoiler: the Fake Karakura Arc]]? Yeah, it was a trap. [[spoiler: Gin and the top 3 Espada weren’t even there. Hitsugaya]] was not amused. Oh, and did you ''really think'' that [[spoiler: the Hogyoku was some [[GreenLanternRing do-all reality warper capable of creating a King's Key]]?]] Ha. That was a prank.
* {{Tsundere}}: The Kuchiki siblings, type 1 and 2 respectively.
* UnwittingPawn: It would actually be shorter to list who isn't one.
* UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans
* VillainousBSOD: Two of the most memorable are:
** For [[spoiler: Ulquiorra: WHY WON'T THEY DIE]].
** For [[spoiler: Unohana: HE BEAT ME LIKE A WHORE]]
* VillainProtagonist: Define “villain,” [[GrayAndGrayMorality please]]. And “protagonist” in [[MemoryGambit later chapters]]. And... Who the Hell are we supposed to root for, [[MindScrew here?!]]
* WeAreStrugglingTogether: ''The'' only reason why shinigami captains are even social to each other, let alone face the threat of Hollows in any coordination, is thanks to the pure might of Old Man Yamamoto. Before him things were... [[AHouseDivided not]] [[FromBadToWorse so nice]].
* WeHaveReserves: This does not end well for their leaders at the very end.
* WellIntentionedExtremist: Half of the cast; the other half is either a WideEyedIdealist or ActionSurvivor trying to keep their life at all cost.
* WorldOfBadass:
* WorldsStrongestMan: Yamamoto, also know as "The Old Man of the Mountain"; the single most powerful warrior to ever possess a blade, and why this is not ''entirely'' a good thing.
** [[spoiler: With the destruction of Yamamoto the title seems to go to Ichigo, who is at one point theorised to be something of a contingency: "a warrior so powerful he could possibly challenge whichever one of the powerhouses was left standing after the war, Aizen or Yamamoto".]]
** [[spoiler: Zaraki Kenpachi gets his bankai, becomes immune to most ranged attacks, with a [[battle aura]] best described as a 'solid supernova'.]]
* WorfEffect: Boy, the [[spoiler: zero squadron]] took it hard in the backside in the story, becoming barely worth of being called Canon fodder. Also to Byakuya at hands of [[spoiler: Renji Espada]].
* {{Yandere}}: Holy ''shit'', [[spoiler: Momo!]]
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: Refreshingly subverted by [[spoiler: Unohana.]] It would be much more worthwile for them to have to live under the new management.

[[folder: Lifted Up ]]

* AnimalMotifs: The Divisions have been reorganized, instead of flowers, they now use animals as their symbols.
* InMediasRes: The story opens with Matsumoto [[spoiler: inexplicably a traitor]] and kind of goes from there.