Disclaimer: All characters and storylines (except for the one I'm writing
of course!) belong to Rumiko Takahashi (God bless her genius!).
Important Note!!!!!!!!!!: The legend I based this story upon is an actual
legend, I don't know the exact location of its origins, but I know it is
still believed throughout Europe. Another legend which I used in this story
is an Irish legend, and it states that on Hallowe'en night, the spirits of
the dead are walking about and if you hear footsteps it is one of the dead
following you, so if you turn around and see him or her, you will soon join
them. Eerie, eh? Mwahahahaha!!!!!
Akane Tendo watched out of her second floor bedroom window, her dark,
velvety brown eyes following the large raindrops falling from the grey sky.
She sighed in defeat. It had been three days and the rain hadn't stopped
yet, there was no way it would stop by that night.
her face into her arms and sighed again, subjugated by the mizzle. A sudden
knock on her door broke her out of her depressed thoughts. "Come in." She
mumbled through her sweater sleeve.
"I brought a lamp, dear." Kasumi said, stepping into the dimly lit room.
She noticed the candles glowing on the desk were almost burned down to the
pins that had been stuck through them.
Earlier in the day, Akane had come home from an
early morning outing with two white candles and a book of charms, then
preceded to ask Kasumi for four pins. Without asking questions, the older
girl had committed said amount of pins over to her shorthaired sister. Now,
staring at the candles lit on the desk by the window, she understood why.
legend, which originated in the North of England, used candles as love
charms. It was believed that if two pins were stuck through a lighted
candle, by the time it burned down to the pins the sought-after lover would
have arrived. For extra effectiveness, it helped to recite a special verse
while inserting the pins. 'It's not the candle alone I stick, but (name of
the man or woman)'s heart I mean to prick; whether he (she) be asleep or
awake, I'll have him (her) come to me and speak.'
That would explain the quiet chanting Kasumi had
heard while passing her sister's room only hours ago. Seemingly, Akane
thought she would need two candles to snare her love. Moreover, the eldest
Tendo daughter had an idea who that might be.
The longhaired girl smiled quietly as she placed
the lamp on the desktop, resting her hand on the girl's shoulder. "Akane,
are you alright?" She asked, stroking her sister's bobbed hair.
"Yes." Came the muffled reply. It sounded much more half-hearted than
intended Kasumi was sure. Akane lifted her head and looked at the girl
standing before her. "It's not going to work, Kasumi." She choked out, a
small tear creeping down her cheek. "I just know it." It was obvious the
older girl knew what was going on.
Dark eyes gazed sympathetically at the
sobbing young woman, and Kasumi leaned over to wrap her arms around her
younger sister's petite form. "I'm sure it will, dear." She assured,
smiling even though Akane couldn't see her. "But even if this doesn't work,
I know something that will." Her sibling perked up a little and managed a
"What is it?" She questioned, wiping her eyes and
sniffing sorrowfully. Kasumi straightened and pointed at the lamp.
"Do you remember that
old legend mother used to tell us when we were young? How on Hallowe'en
night, if a girl carrying a lamp goes to a spring of water and peers into
the depths she'll see the face of her future husband?" The younger girl
nodded and looked in the other direction, fresh tears appearing in her
"Yes. But I already thought of that, and the rain won't stop in time!" She
broke out crying again, louder than before. Kasumi slipped her fingers
through the dark, cropped hair of her sister, the same way their mother had
when she had been upset.
Akane had always
been the most spoiled in a way, being the youngest, and Kasumi hated to see
her cry. Especially since she so looked like their mother. The same soft
eyes and pouty little mouth, the colour of peach petals against porcelain
skin, and the ebony-black hair, straight and glossy. To see her cry was to
see their mother cry, and it was painful to be reminded of the sorrow of
"True." She stated simply, smiling sweetly in hope that her words
might pull the girl from her melancholy, "But the tale never said that it
had to be a clear night to see your lover." Akane lifted her face, the
start of a grin pulling at the corner of her mouth.
"Then you think I could-?" She stopped
in the middle of her sentence, biting her lip in anticipation, Kasumi
"Of course! I don't see why not!" She
lowered her voice to a whisper and leaned forward, "But I think you may
want to wait until father and Nabiki are asleep, they may give you trouble
and ask questions." Akane agreed quickly and stood up, stretching her
think I'll go and eat dinner now." She beamed, and headed downstairs,
stopping at the door to turn and look behind her. "Thank you, Kasumi."
Suddenly, she ran to her sister and threw her arms around her neck, then
scampered down to the dining room without another word.
All through dinner, she was staring straight at her food,
smiling uncontrollably. Or so it seemed to her fiancé, Ranma Saotome. "Hey,
Akane," he began, cocky and sarcastic as ever, "How come you're smiling so
much? Find out that even homely chicks like you can get away with marriage
if it's arranged by parents?"
tensed every muscle in his finely tuned body, readying himself for the
customary mallet used when he'd said something particularly stupid. Which
of course, he had. When it didn't come, he opened one eye and peeked over
at the still-smiling girl.
Akane ignored him and kept eating her food, a pretty smile still
plastered to her heart-shaped face. It was as if she'd been given something
irrevocably wonderful. Even Ranma's supposedly 'witty' repartee, wasn't
going to ruin it for her. And of course, it didn't, for tonight, she would
finally discover who, without a doubt, she was meant to marry, and love
until the day she died.
Thing was, the boy had
expected to be shot into orbit around Nerima, and that was the problem. It
hadn't happened. And a violent reaction from this girl who he could take
anything for was better than no reaction. No reaction meant she didn't
care, not about what he thought, or said, or did, maybe didn't care about
him period. This was the thing that bothered him the most, and as she
finished up dinner and headed upstairs silently, he choked down his food.
For the first time in his life, Ranma Saotome had lost his appetite.
'I wonder what she's up to-' He thought
to himself as he left the table and headed for the bedroom he shared with
his father. 'If she won't even hit me than it must not be good.'
"Stupid tomboy-" He mumbled aloud, cursing
himself for not knowing her as well as he thought he had. "Stupid-" He
stopped mid-sentence, his face downcast and worried. "Dammit, Akane, why
won't you hit me-?" The pig-tailed boy let out a long sigh and covered his
face with his hands, massaging his temples with his thumbs. Things were not
going his way. At all.
Later that night, Akane pulled a bright yellow raincoat on over
her pale pink skirt and white woolen sweater, and then grabbed a pair of
black rubber boots to put on over her tennis shoes, carrying the lamp in
her other hand. She crept noiselessly down the stairs, careful to skip the
creaky ninth step. At the door, she donned her boots and snatched an
umbrella from the basket in the front hallway, then ducked out of the house
into the dark streets of Nerima.
Ranma watched as she closed the door without a sound, slowly
backing out from behind the corner wall near the front entrance. He'd been
pacing around the koi pond for hours, kicking stones and dirt and trying to
figure out what had made Akane so happy but had nothing to do with him. How
dare she be made happy by anyone else! When he found out who it was, he was
going to do some serious butt kicking! He'd finally decided to go straight
to the source and ask her right out. That was when she'd come sneaking down
the stairs holding a lamp, obviously doing something disreputable.
'She must be going out to meet this mystery man!' Ranma thought as he
hid automatically and watched the girl leave, 'This is my chance to find
out who he is!'
The boy slipped into his Chinese army jacket
and slippers and followed her surreptitiously into the rain. He was always
a step behind her, watching from shadowed doorways and dark corners, and
when she finally made it to a bus stop three blocks away, he sighed in
relief. Following on foot was getting tiring, but it was well worth it if
he unraveled the source of Akane's sudden attitude of secrecy.
He pulled the jacket up over his head and tucked his chin into
his chest, quietly sitting in the front of the bus, hoping she wouldn't
acknowledge his presence. However, the girl seemed distracted to even
notice her surroundings, she was staring out of the window, rain streaking
down the outer glass. She was somber-faced, but her eyes were dancing with
something that Ranma couldn't describe.
He watched from behind his collar, as she
leaned back comfortably against the seat, sighing. Her small hands fiddles
with the hem of her coat, her uncovered hair, then laced their fingers
together and settled back on her lap to start the cycle all over again.
The boy stared down at his feet
after a few minutes of watching her, and focused in on the droplets of
water falling into a quickly forming puddle. He was soaked thoroughly and
he would have some explaining to do when he arrived back at the dojo
dripping all over the floor. As would Akane when she arrived at her
destination, only she would be explaining to him. And in no uneven terms.
The bus made an
abrupt stop and Ranma almost shot off the seat, but caught himself with his
foot in time to duck his head as the girl passed. She stepped off the bus
gracefully, opening her umbrella against the downpour, and moved into a
large cluster of trees. "You gettin' off, buddy?" The bus driver asked in a
deep, scratchy voice, flicking off ashes out of the window from his
"Oh, yeah," the boy answered unconsciously, following his fiancée off
the bus. He waited for it to pull away, then walked down the grassy slope
she had, and into the collection of foliage. The sound of night animals
going about their business perked up the young man's ears and he treaded
carefully through the underbrush.
As he broke
through the trees, he caught sight of Akane standing by a small spring. He
had absolutely no idea where they were at the moment, somewhere rural
enough not to be labeled he was sure, but then, he didn't really care. All
he wanted to know was what was going on with this girl. His girl.
She closed her
umbrella, letting the rain splash against her smooth cheeks and run down
the back of her neck. The pale moonlight of the Hallowe'en moon hanging
overhead glowed against her face, causing her to look ethereal, as if she
were not of this world. Something wild and free, faerie.
She shook her bobbed black
hair, trying to free it of excess moisture. Ranma crouched in the bushes
only two feet away, and gulped as a droplet from her tresses fell on his
cheek, just below his wondering eye. An incredible thought came to him and
he touched it lightly, bursting the perfect roundness of it's liquid form,
slowly moving down his flesh. When it touched her, the rain took on her
scent. The scent of lavender and her own essence, something sweet and pure,
that he couldn't describe. This was Akane. His Akane. The Akane he knew,
really knew was there whenever she smiled. And she was his world, cause
whenever she smiled, everything seemed so trivial in comparison.
The girl placed the umbrella on the
ground and knelt before the spring on the coat she'd spread out on the
ground. Pulling a match out of her pocket, she cupped her hands against the
rain and lit it, leaning forward to set the wick of the candle in the lamp
ablaze. The coloured glass lit up brightly in the darkness of the night and
she sat back on her haunches for a moment leaning her head back with an
open mouth to catch the rain on her tongue.
'What's she doing?' The boy thought, creasing his eyebrows
in confusion. Where was the man he'd been sure she'd gone out to see? Or
was there a man? He kicked himself mentally and bit his lip. No, there
wasn't. He'd been so overwhelmed by her lack of reaction that he'd jumped
to conclusions and accused without proof. It was definitely a good thing he
hadn't made it to her room that night with indictments aplenty. Wait! He
stopped his train of thoughts suddenly, moving out of the undergrowth
silently, and creeping closer to the stooped girl. She was leaning over the
spring, staring into the water.
"Please-" Her soft voice came, pleading
with the night, "Please. Show me-" A tear slipped down her cheek and Ranma
moved forward, right behind her, staring into the depths of the water that
she had been previously. He wanted to do something, something to help her.
reached out his hand and grasped her shoulder, his fingers squeezing the
soft flesh gently. "Akane," he whispered, "What are you doing out here?"
The girl's velvety brown eyes flipped open
with surprise and she gazed into the water at Ranma's reflection. "Ranma-?"
There it was again, a voice softer than a spring dawn, calling again. To
him. A sigh escaped her throat and she closed her eyes for a second,
reopening them as her fingers pressed against the back of his hand.
"What are you
doing here?" He repeated, with more force, turning her around to look at
"Looking for answers." She
replied, softly, staring up into his azure eyes, bright in the October
moonlight. His face leaned closer to hers involuntarily and his heart
"Answers? Did you find any?" The girl moved from her bent
position, standing in unison with him, their fingers clinging together
desperately, seeking answers of their own in each other's touch.
A smile appeared on the
girl's lips and she blushed instinctively at the question with a double
meaning. "Yes." It was only one word, but after a night of chasing her
through darkened streets and worrying that her heart was lightened by
another, Ranma did the only thing he supposed he could do in the weary
state he was in. He kissed her.
Lips fitted against each other in
silent conversation, expressing with actions what could not be articulated
with words. Soft, sweet, and drowning, all were her kiss, all were being
felt by him now. Ranma breathed her in frenziedly, sucking in gasps of the
perfume of her hair. His hands moved down her back, to the small curve
right above her buttocks, his fingertips brushing the warm, tender skin of
her lower back, beneath the hem of her sweater. He felt her fingers in his
hair, pulling him deeper into the kiss, she was inescapable. Though, even
if he'd been able to let go, he wouldn't have wanted to. He moved as close
to her as he could get, grasping the material of her pullover in his
fingers, holding her to him.
"Akane-" He groaned into her mouth, his mind cut off
from the rest of him, "I think I love you." She pulled away slowly, just
enough to speak comfortably.
"You're not sure?"
She questioned mischievously, swallowing in anticipation, her eyes focusing
on his pining lips.
"Huh? What?" He asked, not sure of what
exactly he was saying. The girl smiled and moved her hands to his face.
"Well, you better have figured it out completely by the end of
the next kiss." She quipped, pulling his lips back to hers.
Ranma smiled into her mouth, enjoying her touch. "Mm-hmm. Next kiss-" He
trailed off, but they both knew what he really meant, here in the rain on
Hallowe'en night. I love you.
Author's Note: Thank you everybody who read this!!! And everybody who read
all of my fanfics!! Who bothered to read them, that is, because you didn't
have to, but you did! And I appreciate it! Truly and sincerely!!!! Again,
I would like to thank all of those people who are continuous readers
(possibly avid readers, heh, heh, I wish-) of my fics. I won't mention your
names because I'm not sure if you want to keep a level of privacy or not.
If you want me to I'll mention you in my next fic!!!! I love you guys!!!!!
And, once again, I will also promote my other fics, "Wanna' bet?!",
"Thinking 'Bout you.", "All I Want for Christmas.", and "Fence-Walking".
All you have to d to get a listing of them all is click on my name and then
click on the one's you'd like to read!!!! Thanks so much again!!!! God