|The Day I Became a Shinigami|
|Air Date||October 5, 2004|
|Story Arc||Agent of the Shinigami Arc|
As several figures crawl about in a dark world, Rukia Kuchiki dressed in a black kimono stands atop a telephone pole in the Human World. She senses a strong pulse and proceeds to jump forward. As she falls forward, a message appears, stating, "And so the sword of fate had fallen."
Elsewhere, an Ichigo Kurosaki fights with a small gang of skateboarders after they knock down a flower vase placed on the grave of a young girl. After he scares off the skateboarders, he proceeds to pick up the vase and tells the girl's spirit that he'll bring more flowers tomorrow before saying she should hurry up to Heaven.
On his way home, the student calls himself Ichigo Kurosaki, admitting that he has had the ability to see spirits for as long as he could remember. Upon entering his home, his father greets him with a kick to his face. His father tells him that he is late, and that dinner is served at seven o'clock every night. Ichigo argues, asking if that is any way to treat his son who just helped a spirit find peace on his way home. While the two argue, one of Ichigo's sisters tells him that he has a new friend, a spirit, to which Ichigo says that no matter how much he exorcises them, they just keep coming back. His other sister becomes jealous of Ichigo and Karin's ability to see spirits, while she only can sense them. Karin tells her that she doesn't believe in ghosts, saying just because she can see them, doesn't make her believe in them. After his fight with his father, Ichigo decides to go to his room rather than having dinner.
The following morning, Ichigo notices a news report of an accident that occurred close to where he lives. While delivering flowers to the spirit, he suddenly hears her scream and rushes to find her being chased by a large hollow that resembles a giant mantis. Just as the two are about to be devoured by the monster, a woman in a black kimono and wielding a Zanpakutō appears and vanquishes the monster before quickly disappearing.
Later that night, as Ichigo is reflecting on the events of the day, he finds himself wondering who that woman was. Suddenly, a black butterfly and the woman from before appear in Ichigo's room. Ichigo attempts to speak to her, but she does not seem to notice him, until in frustration, he kicks her in the back of the head. After her initial surprise at his ability to see and even touch her, she proceeds to introduce herself as a Shinigami. Meanwhile, the little girl's spirit is once again being chased by a Hollow. Ichigo, having not believed a word from the Shinigami, tells her that he admits that she is not a Human, but he does not believe in Shinigami because he has never seen one before calling her a little kid. The Shinigami uses a spell to bind Ichigo in order to prove what she said and performs Konsō on a plus, letting him know that he is being sent on to Soul Society.
The Shinigami explains to Ichigo about Soul Society, Pluses, and Hollows by drawing pictures for him. Upon seeing her drawings, Ichigo comments on how bad they are. Having explained that there is a Hollow in the area that she hasn't been able to locate, Ichigo asks why she cannot hear it, to which she claims that something has been hampering her senses. Meanwhile, another Hollow goes after the spirit of the dead girl, but stops short of attacking her, saying that he senses an extraordinary soul along with a Shinigami. Moments later, the Shinigami notices its presence and is amazed at how she was unable to sense something with that much Reiatsu.
Having reached Ichigo's home, the Hollow proceeds to attack his sisters and the Shinigami tells him to stay still while she deals with it. Seeing his sister Karin in danger, Ichigo breaks free from the binding spell he was put under, to the Shinigami's shock, and begins to attack Fishbone D to no avail. After rescuing his younger sister and finding out that the attacks on the spirit girl and his sisters are his fault, Ichigo tells the Hollow that if he wants his soul, he should come and get it.
The Hollow attacks Ichigo, but he is saved by the Shinigami, who manages to injure the Hollow. However, she is injured herself in return. With no way to fight, she tells Ichigo that if he wants to save his family, he must become a Shinigami himself by being impaled by her Zanpakutō. Having accepted this, Ichigo tells the Shinigami to give him the sword. She tells him that her name is not Shinigami, but it is Rukia Kuchiki, to which he responds by telling her his name in return, before she impales him with her Zanpakutō.
Having become a Shinigami himself, Ichigo defeats the Hollow, leaving Rukia astonished at how Ichigo took almost all of her power (when she only intended to give him half), how he broke a Kidō on his own, and how he is able to wield such a large Zanpakutō.