The shadows hanging over Nerima have dispersed. Now read on as Ranma, Akane and a friend go...
Looking For Trouble
Ranma Saotome grinned as one of his best friends stepped through the private gate at Narita National Airport. Roy Harper looked rumpled, as anyone would after a long international flight no matter how luxurious the aircraft, but otherwise seemed awake and alert. Roy was a lean, fit young man, about a year older than Ranma and an inch or two taller, but not quite as broad across the shoulders. He wore his red hair almost militarily short, and his keen green eyes glinted with pleasure when he spotted his friend. He was dressed in blue jeans, black sneakers and a t-shirt that bore the legend 'Great Frog' and an anthropomorphic frog which looked like the bastard spawn of Kermit the Frog and Ed 'Big Daddy' Roth's Rat Fink.
"Roy," said Ranma as he walked up to his friend. "Welcome to Tokyo."
Roy grinned back as he shook hands and clapped Ranma on the shoulder. "Thanks buddy. You're looking good. Or at least happier than last time I saw you. How did things work out with your folks?"
"That's... a bit complicated. A lot more complicated than I expected."
Roy gave Ranma a quizzical look. "Considering you were dealing with a surprise arranged marriage and a seppuku contract, I'm almost afraid to ask for details."
"Oh yeah, it was tons of fun. But things are working out. I'll tell you about it in the car. How are things with you."
Roy shrugged. "Quiet enough that I'm pretty bored. No Titan missions or emergencies, and there hasn't been much trouble in Starling City since Onomatopoeia took a header into the bay off of Star Bridge last month. Brick may be up to something, but when is he not? Donna, Wally and Garth all say 'hi', by the way, and are sorry they couldn't come out with me."
"It's okay. Trust me, I know something about family obligations," Ranma said wryly.
"Yeah, but at least their families make reasonable ones."
"It's good to see you again, Master Roy," said Alfred. He had walked up to the two young men as they talked.
"Thanks Alfred. Same here." Roy looked the older man over. "I didn't realize you owned any clothes that weren't black."
Alfred smiled. "Even an old fossil of a manservant lets his hair down every once in a while," he joked, straightening the lapels of white drill suit. "May I take your bag, sir?"
"No, I got it. Thank you, though." Roy slung the carry-on duffel he carried in his left hand over his shoulder. The three began to walk from the gate. "It's still a shame the rest of the crew couldn't visit," Roy said to Ranma.. "It would have been cool, all of us hanging out in Tokyo."
"Maybe they'll be able to swing it in a few weeks," Ranma answered.
"Huh? I though you were heading back to Gotham in early August."
"That was my original plan, but like I said things got complicated."
"Just how complicated?"
Ranma flashed a crooked smile. "Well, for one thing, I've got a fiancee now."
Roy stopped and stared wide-eyed at Ranma. Ranma walked a few more steps then turned to him, still smirking and silently counting seconds. Alfred just shook his head and continued on, trusting his charges would not linger too long."
"Say what ?" Roy finally said.
"Indoor voice, Roy."
"You went through with it? You actually agreed to your old man's hair-brained idea?"
"I just won a bet today. Wally and Garth once said only Donna could ever get you to shut up; I knocked you speechless for thirty-two seconds."
"You are a goddamn troll, Saotome. You gonna explain just why you went out of your mind?"
"Yeah, I will. But not here. Come on, we need to get to the penthouse before two. Someone's visiting that I want you to meet. I'll give you the details on the drive over."
Disclaimer – Ranma ½ is the creation of Rumiko Takahashi. The Teen Titans are the property of DC Comics. Both are used without permission.
Looking For Trouble – starting this weekend!