Division 13 is responsible for communications between the squads, as well as with the rest of Soul Society, and the planes of the human world and Hueco Mundo when necessary. Unfortunately, this division is currently somewhat under-staffed; its captain, while powerful and well-liked, suffers from a debilitating illness, and its vice-captain seat has remained empty since the death of Shiba Kaien some years ago.
Captain: Ukitake Juushirou
Captain Ukitake is one of the most popular captains of the Gotei 13, a man respected by many – especially by his subordinates – for his honesty, loyalty, and sense of justice. Unlike the more lawful captains, however, Ukitake's morality is much more personal, and he does not hesitate to speak out or work against the law if he believes it is wrong; this has placed him in conflict with the enforcers of the law on more than one occasion. Even in opposition, however, Ukitake is a calm and thoughtful man who prefers to resolve a situation without resorting to extreme measures.
Ukitake has been close friends with 8th Division captain Kyouraku Shunsui since his youth, and the two frequently work together. Like Kyouraku, Ukitake is seen as one of the most powerful captains in Soul Society; however, unlike his friend, Ukitake is hampered by having tuberculosis (said to be the reason for his white hair). This limits him to fighting only for short periods of time – excessive action triggers fits of bloody coughing – and means that he spends a great deal of time resting, usually delegating most of his tasks to his vice-captain, or - since Kaien's death - his two 3rd seat officers. Although his body is weak, he is known for having a great appetite, and many subordinates make a habit of presenting the captain with various foods as gifts.
Zanpakutou: Sougyo no Kotowari (lit. "Truth of Pisces")
Ukitake's zanpakutou is one of only two in Soul Society that exists as a pair, the other being Shunsui Kyouraku's Katen Kyoukotsu. Unlike Kyouraku's zanpakutou, however, Sougyo no Kotowari only splits into two swords when released. Also like Katen Kyoukostu, its shikai command is long and elaborate: "every wave be my shield, all thunder become my blade".
In its shikai, Sougyo no Kotowari splits into two thin blades resembling fishing javelins with a reversed prong-blade on the dull end. The two swords are connected by a cord, which is lined with several small charms. Although its special abilities are broadly unknown, it is obviously a water-based zanpakutou.
The position of 13th division vice-captain has been empty since the death of Shiba Kaien, despite pressure for Ukitake to appoint a new one. The two strongest contenders are the equally-ranked 3rd seat officers, Kotetsu Kiyone (younger sister of 4th division vice-captain Kotetsu Isane) and Kotsubaki Sentarou, a former resident of Rukongai. The pair constantly compete to serve their captain better than their rival.
Former Vice-captain: Shiba Kaien (deceased)
Shiba Kaien was a kind, good-natured young man from the Shiba house, formerly one of the great noble houses (which declined after his death). His laidback nature was somewhat at odds with his noble birth, and he had a reputation for treating all his subordinates fairly and equally despite his position. Kaien is noted as something a prodigy amongst the shinigami, graduating from a six-year curriculum in just one year, and becoming a vice-captain five years after. He was also married to another shinigami, his 3rd seat officer. Some years ago, however, both Kaien and his wife were killed by a rampaging hollow, which was later defeated by other members of his division.
Zanpakutou: Nejibana (lit. "Screw Flower")
Nehibana appeared as an ordinary sword in its sealed state. Its shikai command was "uncoil the liquid heavens", and its shikai form was as a tri-pronged spear or trident with a crystalline appearance. Its special ability was to manipulate water. that has the ability to manipulate water.