Last chance for comments


Vacation Days
Epilogue



"Ohh, I can't wait to get to the beach."

"Yeah, me too," Tenchi said as he finished tying the cord of his black-colored (and very baggy) swimming trunks. He double checked the cord. With the way his luck had been going, the trunks would probably be too loose and float off him once he hit the ocean or something. No way was he taking any unnecessary chances, not with the way his vacation had gone so far.

Mihoshi was nearly bouncing up and down in excitement. "It was nice of you-know-who to repair my ship, wasn't it, Tenchi?"

"Yes, it was." Tenchi was not enthusiastic about having to constantly refer to the Juraian Security Directorate as 'you know who,' but they had promised their silence on the matter, and Mihoshi insisted they not call the Directorate by name, even in private.

After the successful meeting with General Shakari, he and Mihoshi had been sworn to secrecy about what had happened. The general had assured Mihoshi in particular that he would take care of informing the Galaxy Police about the matter, and had promised to leave out any details concerning her part in the affair. She was supposed to be on vacation, and if she had to file a report on the matter, she would be forced to call an end to her vacation and go through who knew how many debriefings. And it was not as though the Directorate had not already thoroughly interrogated and learned all they needed to know; it would have been a waste of time. Mihoshi had felt bad about not reporting to her superiors, but they had specifically given orders that they did not want to hear from her while she was on vacation, and she was ever the obedient officer. Besides, if you couldn't trust the Juraian Security Directorate, who could you trust?

To help Mihoshi out, they had rebuilt her ship, leaving it in even better shape than before the crash, even going so far as do Midasize it. Even Yukinojo was placed into his new domicile without a problem, although Shakari informed Mihoshi that they purged the memory programs that had information concerning Stargrave and the Yagdagron. They left a fake diagnostic test that informed Yukinojo there had been a small malfunction in his memory bank that had wiped out the events in the last few days and that the problem had since been repaired. That had seemed to take care of everything, as near as everyone could tell.

The two had landed on Aqua Regia without further incident, proving that miracles could happen. Yukinojo was happy to shut down and go on his own 'vacation' at last. Accommodations proved no problem, despite arriving over a week late from when they made their reservations. There was plenty of room at the hotel Mihoshi had selected, a very nice choice with an elegant interior and a pleasant, relaxed atmosphere (with little in the way of screaming children, or screaming aliens, as the case might have been) Mihoshi told him she had stayed at it before when she was younger and that it hadn't changed a bit since those days. After a hassle-free check in, the pair went directly up to their room. The room itself was very ornate, with tasteful ocean-oriented decorations and everything seemingly in order. There was the slight problem of the man at the front desk making a slight mistake in giving them a room with only one king-sized bed instead of the double that Tenchi had specifically asked for, but he was sure they could have it changed. However, it wouldn't be until after they had a chance to enjoy some quality time at the beach. In a pinch, he could even sleep on the floor. It was the right thing to do, after all. He and Mihoshi had already shared enough body warmth, not that it had been a bad experience, not at all. She had been pretty warm, and it wasn't as though she had tried to seduce him (while she was awake) or anything. Maybe it wouldn't be so bad if they were to share the same bed...

No, no. He didn't need to have any thoughts like that; they would just get him into trouble. Although, it had been kind of nice waking up next to someone. And there were other considerations. After he had feared Mihoshi was dead, he somehow, in some imperceptible way, felt closer to her. A lot closer. Actually, he now really, really wanted to spend some more time with her, even though they had already spent over a week exclusively in each other's company (not counting interrogators and people trying to kill them). It was just that for some reason it didn't feel like enough time. The whole matter was all very confusing to him.

"So how do I look?" Mihoshi spun around once in a circle to show off her swimsuit.

The distraction's timing would have been perfect, save that the nature of the distraction did little to ease Tenchi's thoughts. "Ah, very nice." Tenchi felt himself blush slightly. Mihoshi had chosen a considerably more revealing outfit than Tenchi had. It was a yellowish orange two-piece bikini that, while not as revealing as something Ryouko might have worn, was definitely less conservative than a suit Aeka would have chosen. He also couldn't help noticing that she filled the suit out VERY well. However, that particular thought made him realize something was... missing.

"Of course!" Tenchi shouted in joy as he gave a tiny leap into the air. He went over to a nearby table and proceeded to smack his head into it. Several times.

"Ah, Tenchi, why are you slamming your head into the table?" Mihoshi asked as she stared at him in confusion. "Did you leave something behind on Earth? Don't feel bad. I know when I go on vacation I always forget to take something along. I think it's that way for every race, except for the ones that never take vacations, of course. Now, I happened to notice that this time I forgot my sunglasses, but I wouldn't hit my head into a table because of that, and you shouldn't either."

Tenchi smacked his head into it one more time before turning to Mihoshi, his eyes almost filled with tears. "I can't believe it. The voice in my head's gone."

"What voice?"

Tenchi was nearly delirious with joy. "Back on the planet, after our crash, I kept hearing this voice in my head. A pretty raunchy one, too. Sometimes it would go away, but every time I hit my head, it would come back. But now it's gone. The doctors must have made it go away. HAHA-"

Tenchi's laughter was interrupted as Mihoshi broke a chair over his head. A metal one.

Tenchi moaned in pain, eventually lifting himself from the floor. He was still holding his head in pain as he shot Mihoshi a look of incomprehension, "What did you do that for?"

"Is the voice in your head back yet?"

"No."

Mihoshi picked up a second chair. "Don't worry. I'll try again."

"No! Stop!" Tenchi stepped backward and once he saw Mihoshi drawing back the chair again for another swing.

Mihoshi kept it poised above her head. "How come?"

"That's my line," Tenchi retorted. "Why did you hit me in the head with a chair?"

Mihoshi put the chair down and sat in it. "Well, since you said the voice in your head went away, and that it would come back if you hit your head, and you were smacking your head into the table, I assumed you wanted it to come back. Since it didn't seem to be working, I decided to help you out."

"NO!" Tenchi grabbed Mihoshi by the shoulders and shook her slightly to emphasize his point. "I was just making sure it was gone. I don't want it back, ever."

"Okay, I won't hit you in the head again. But if you change your mind--"

"--you'll be the first person I go to," Tenchi assured her. The ringing in his head had stopped. It must have been becoming sturdier form all of the abuse he had taken over the last few months. It was time to get down to the beach before something else, less repairable, went wrong. "Let's go. And here." He handed her an extra pair of sunglasses. "I know what it's like to forget things, too."

The pair made their way down the stairs and through the crowded hotel lobby and prepared to go out onto the beach. Tenchi was eager to get an up-close look at it. The only time he had a chance to examine the world was as they were landing, and a mile-high view of a beach did not exactly allow one to get a good impression of it, other than it was large and had no visible oil spills nearby.

The pair cut through the lobby and towards the back, catching sight of the sunny exterior through the oceanside of the hotel. The two walked out the back of the hotel and onto the edge of the beach adjoining it. At a glance, it wasn't really all that different from Earth's style of beaches. There was sand. There was an ocean (whose waters were clearer than anything on Earth). There were beachgoers. There was an outdoor bar next to the hotel. There was a swimming pool next to the hotel for those that didn't like to swim in the ocean. Yes, everything was just like Earth, except for the multiple-limbed aliens, the amorphous-blobbed aliens, the aliens with the big heads, the aliens...

Mihoshi giggled and spun around in a little circle, holding her head up to the skies as she basked in the warm aura of the sun. "Isn't this great, Tenchi? There isn't a cloud in the sky. The temperature is just right. The ocean is clear blue. There's only a light breeze, allowing us to enjoy the brisk salty air--"

"--No one on the beach is wearing a bathing suit."

"--No one on the beach is wearing a bathing suit. There's lots of food vendors. There's..." It took a moment for the actual words to set it. Using her impressive detective skills, Mihoshi examined the people in her surroundings a little more clearly. "It looks like you're right about that, Tenchi. That's odd. I distinctly remember wearing a bathing suit the last time I was here."

"This particular section of Aqua Regia was converted into a nudist's beach, Ma'am. It's that way on this entire island and the adjoining ones," one of the waiters that worked the outdoor bar mentioned as he passed the pair.

Mihoshi appeared relieved. "Well, that would explain it. I just knew everyone was wearing clothing last time. Better get out of your suit, Tenchi." Mihoshi began to undo the straps on her bikini top.

"Whaa?" was all Tenchi managed to get out as Mihoshi's top fell to the ground. It took him a moment to collect himself, especially with the view he was suddenly receiving. "Look, why don't we stay at one of the other islands? One that has people wearing clothing."

It took a moment of stared confusion before Mihoshi gave Tenchi a wide smile. "Oh, I understand."

"Thank goodness," Tenchi sighed.

"You don't have to worry about getting sunburned. I'll be happy to lotion you up."

"That is not what I meant!" Tenchi shouted. He quieted back down once he realized everyone was staring at him because of the outburst. "What I mean is, I don't think I'm really comfortable with the idea of going out there without a bathing suit."

"How come?" Mihoshi asked as she took off her bottoms.

"I'd feel kind of weird." Tenchi wondered exactly why Mihoshi had suddenly seemed to have become as brazen as Ryouko tended to be.

"I don't know why you would," Mihoshi said without a hint of duplicity. "Everyone else is naked too. That means being naked is normal. Now, if you were the only one wearing a bathing suit when no one else was, then you'd have a reason for feeling weird."

"Well, yes," Tenchi slowly admitted.

"So you should feel weird with a bathing suit on. Therefore, if you take off your bathing suit, you shouldn't feel weird."

"I guess." Tenchi started to become uneasy at the course the conversation had suddenly taken. He was losing an argument with Mihoshi; that was not supposed to happen. Perhaps the Directorate had done something to him he was unaware of.

It felt like he was being set up, and Tenchi suddenly found himself wishing he still had the voice in his head. It tended to be more savvy and would probably have known what was about to happen. Of course, it would also have been making all sorts of suggestive remarks about the attractive naked female in front of him. Ohh, he was thinking of Mihoshi in terms of attractiveness, not a good way to talk himself out of being on a beach, naked with her. He tried to bring his thinking around back to the original course it had been on, but Mihoshi's further prattle prevented that.

"And since everyone else is nude, it only makes sense you shouldn't mind it either. Unless you have something to be embarrassed about."

That caught his attention. "I do not," Tenchi spluttered out.

Mihoshi continued on, as though she hadn't heard him. "Don't worry, if you're embarrassed, then we can leave."

"I have nothing to be embarrassed about!"

"I'll go back in and check us out." Mihoshi started to head back into the hotel.

"Look here!" Tenchi shouted as he dropped his trunks and held his arms wide apart to show that he had absolutely nothing to hide.

All went quiet as everyone within the sound of his shout turned briefly towards him.

Someone snickered.

Tenchi suddenly didn't feel quite as confident as he had a second ago.

Mihoshi turned, and smiled. It wasn't a lascivious leer, but one of simple happiness. "Oh goody. We're going to stay." She grabbed his arm and the two of them went out to the beach itself, making sure to bring their swimsuits along, as well as grabbing a couple of beach towels that the hotel offered at one of their booths along the beach.

Tenchi noted that about eighty percent of the inhabitants of the beach were humanoids of about the same general appearance as an Earthling. He also noticed that, unlike most of the beach-oriented shows he had seen on television and at the movies, many of the inhabitants of the beaches of Aqua Regia were not the sort he would have chosen to view without clothing. Certainly very few of them compared with either his own, fit body and Mihoshi's rather well endowed one. His pride swelled slightly.

So did other things.

Tenchi shifted his towel in front of him. No sense in Mihoshi, or anyone else, getting any ideas that he was perverted or something.

As his initial wave of indignation passed, Tenchi's usually reserved demeanor began to reassert itself, allowing parts of his anatomy to calm down. Here he was, walking right next to an attractive, naked girl that he knew really well. Maybe he was making a mistake.

No. Suddenly he realized that, well, he was being something of an indecisive weenie. Harsh words, but there was something about this whole situation that made him want to act more... mature, at least when it came to the opposite sex. Perhaps it had to do with how close to death he, and especially Mihoshi, had come. Perhaps it had to do with that part of his subconscious that had come to the fore from the concussion. As much as Tenchi was loath to admit, it had been right about a number of things.

No! Not the latent bi-sexual tendencies (he hoped), but rather in his usual habit of avoiding any serious thoughts that concerned dealing with members of the opposite sex in a mature manner. Okay, seeing other men, or at least aliens that were comparable to him, made him realize he might not have been the 'biggest' man around, but he wasn't that bad either. It was normal to actually go out on dates, have girlfriends, and other things that ordinary guys around him did. It was true he had never had a real girlfriend, had never been on a date actually, but maybe it was about time he tried to do those normal things. Admittedly, he didn't want to hurt any of the girls' feelings, but none of them acted like they were going to give up on their own any time soon. That meant either continuing to semi-lead them on in the hope that matters would work themselves out, or making some sort of decision. Perhaps it was time to stop wasting everyone's time and actually make a choice. Yes, just thinking about it made him realize that, as difficult as it might be on him and the others, it was probably the right thing to do.

The two began to pick out a spot, well away from most of the other beachgoers, to lie out in the sun. Tenchi thought since they had some measure of privacy, now was the time o speak his mind. He cleared his throat to catch his companion's attention. "Mihoshi, it wouldn't be fair to Aeka and Ryouko if I didn't spend any time alone with them before I made any sort of important decisions, so I'm going to have to go off alone with each of them too. But if I was forced to choose someone right now, I have to admit, it would probably be you."

Mihoshi looked at him blankly. "What are you talking about, Tenchi?"

An exasperated sigh escaped his lips. She would force him to spell it out. "Look, what I'm trying to say is that I can now admit that I really enjoy spending time with you, and I know I like you a lot. An awful lot. I'm not sure, but I think it might even be lo..."

Tenchi trailed off as a high-pitched whistling began to fill the air. An all-too familiar whistling. Tenchi knew exactly what it meant without having to look up. Instead, he leveled his stare towards Mihoshi. "Hmm. Since you're right here in front of me, that means you're not the one that's plummeting out of control from the skies."

"Yep," Mihoshi confirmed. "There was an evil mirror universe version of me that accidentally ended up in our universe once, but I outsmarted her and sent her back forever. There's no way it could be her. Besides, she used to brag about never having crashed her spaceship."

The whistling grew louder.

Tenchi nodded in understanding. "In light of what I was about to say, that means it can only be one, or two people."

Mihoshi looked up to the sky. "Say, isn't that-"

"I should imagine so," Tenchi said without bothering to look up. Judging from the pitch of the whistling, the ship would be crashing in three... two... one.

*CRASH*

"Zero." Tenchi looked to the large space ship that had chosen to crash in an empty stretch of the beach within fifty feet of Tenchi and Mihoshi. A door opened from within the middle of a set of black protrusions, and two women fell out of the ship before it shrunk down to the form of a cabbit.

"I can't believe how much power that stinking ship had," Ryouko said as she was barely able to raise her fatigued form out of the pile of sand she had collapsed into.

"And that it called upon reinforcements." Aeka was barely able to rise to her feet as well. "How many of those ships did we destroy?"

"Four of the big ones, about a dozen of the ones half its size, and close to twenty five of the ones that were about the size of Ryo-Ohki." Ryouko tallied. "And now we got to crash, I mean land, and let Ryo-Ohki rest up. And I need some rest too."

Aeka held the back of her hand to her head in distress, as dramatically as a princess should, just as she had been taught. "It's simply not fair. Why must we be delayed on our holy and righteous quest? Why must we be forced to go through the fire and swords of the enemies who seek to prevent us from saving the one noble soul who has touched me in a way no other could?"

"Except for Yosho," Ryouko said.

"Yes, except for Yo-" Aeka cut off abruptly and scowled at Ryouko. "No! That's not true! I did not harbor those feelings for my brother! What I felt for him was the affection a little girl has, one that could not understand what love truly is. It is only now, that I have blossomed into a delicate woman in the flower of her youth, that I understand what true love means. And now, you repulsive demoness, you've made me lose my place."

"Saving the one noble soul who has touched me in a way no other could."

"Thank you, Lord Tenchi." Aeka cleared her throat. "Yes. As I was saying. Saving the one noble soul who has touched me in a way no other could. For without him, I should wither..."

Aeka froze, her eyes becoming as wide as saucers. Ryouko matched her as her eyes bugged out as well.

"You mean," Ryouko began.

"We've finally found you, Lord Tenchi." Aeka began to cry as she found herself before Tenchi once again. "You have no idea what we went through to rescue you from Mihoshi."

"Rescue?" Tenchi and Mihoshi said together as they stared at Aeka, then at each other quizzically.

"Yeah," Ryouko said as she began to hover in mid-air. "We know she nabbed you when everyone else was looking the other way. And we took it upon ourselves to rescue you from her devious, I mean, witless, clutches. Say, you're not quite as big as I thought you'd be."

Aeka looked at Ryouko curiously, then realized what she was referring to. "Oh, I don't know. I never imagined Lord Tenchi would be all that big. But as Mother has always said, it's the measure of a man's heart that matters, not the size of his..." Aeka's eyes widened. "Lord Tenchi, why are you and Mihoshi naked?"

Ryouko didn't bother asking as she easily put two and two together. Veins began popping out on her forehead, making a rather interesting map-like design. "YOU ROTTEN JERKS!" An energy sword formed in her hand as her eyes turned blood red. She floated towards Tenchi. "So, you two have been doing the horizontal mambo while leaving me out in the cold!" She waved the sword menacingly as she flew toward Tenchi, focusing her attention on him. She stopped when she was no more than two feet away. "I bet you think I'm going to cut you in half for toying with my heart then discarding me like a piece of useless garbage! Well, guess what!" She held the sword high above her head.

"You're wrong." And with that the sword disappeared and she fell to the ground, crying. Ryouko sobbed, "I'm better than that. If you wanna choose Mihoshi over me, then that's all there is to it. I can handle that. I'm a big girl. I won't kill you or anything. I'll be just like I am now, except for destroying any Galaxy Police ships that tick me off from now on."

"And I shall bow out gracefully as well," Aeka sobbed. "I won't have either of you branded traitors to the Empire or executed or any such thing, because I'm a true princess, and I'm better than that too." As Aeka finished her pronouncement, she noted one other interesting fact. "Is it just me, or is everyone else on this beach naked too?"

Ryouko stopped crying and looked at the crowd that had gathered around them. "You know, I think you're right. That must mean--"

"It's a nude beach," Tenchi finished for her.

"Oh," Ryouko said as her and Aeka's tears dried up instantly. Ryouko looked at Tenchi, gained a sinister gleam in her eyes, then phased out of her outfit. "I guess I'll just blend in with the rest of the environment," she said as she flew up to Tenchi and wrapped her arms around him. She was giving him a wide smile that showed off her fangs when she felt someone pinch one of the hands curled around Tenchi's back. Ryouko gave a yelp and released him.

"Sorry, I still need to put lotion on Tenchi," Mihoshi said.

Ryouko directed a scowl at Mihoshi, but her attention was diverted when Aeka gasped, "This is not fair! I cannot be nude in public. I am of royal blood. To be in naught but my own regal flesh before the masses is unacceptable. It would be scandalous. It would be improper. It would be-"

"Aeka! What are you doing here?"

Aeka's jaw dropped until it nearly hit the ground. "MOTHER!"

All eyes turned to see that it was indeed Misaki who had spoken. And that she was in the same state as everyone but Aeka.

Misaki felt overwhelmed. "You should have let me know you were coming. I'd have been happy to greet you when you arrived. I've missed you all so much. Come here, Ryouko."

Before Ryouko could do anything she found herself torn away from Tenchi and given a Misaki-sized hug, which in her unclothed state, meant having one's face buried in an impressive set of cleavage.

"Let me go! People will think I'm a lezzie!"" Ryouko squirmed futily in Misaki's grasp.

"Mother!" Aeka gasped in shock. "You cannot do this. There will be a scandal."

"Now, now." Misaki released her hold on Ryouko and waved dismissively towards her older daughter. "I might not be the young lass I was a nine hundred years ago, but I think I'm still good-looking enough to get by without anyone cringing back in fear. Look, no sag." She handled her breasts briefly to demonstrate to her oldest daughter.

"THAT IS NOT WHAT I MEANT!" Aeka roared.

"You need to relax, Aeka. You could learn something from Ryouko." Misaki turned to the next person in line. "Hello, Tenchi." And proceeded to greet him in her own unique fashion.

"I can't breathe," Tenchi gasped, thinking he preferred it when he had been buried in Mihoshi's cleavage.

Mihoshi tapped Misaki on the shoulder. "Excuse me, but I still haven't lotioned Tenchi up."

Misaki looked up. "Oh, I didn't mean to leave you out, Mihoshi." The Empress made up for her oversight by hugging Mihoshi as well. There was no telling how long the embrace would have gone, for Misaki caught sight of the last member of the party at last.

"Little Ryo-Ohki!" Misaki abandoned Mihoshi and went over to the happily 'Miya'ing creature, who turned into her humanoid form and allowed herself to be embraced by the Empress as well.

Tenchi sighed. Aeka appeared ready to faint from the whole situation as she continued to insist that it wasn't proper for a member of the royal family to appear naked before the public. Ryouko's full concentration was on making sure to stay well out of Misaki's reach. It appeared the vacation Tenchi had been looking forward to had come to end and the one he was going to get was just beginning. He gave an apologetic look towards Mihoshi.

Mihoshi just smiled. "Oh well, vacationing with friends can be fun too."

At least she wasn't depressed, Tenchi thought. That kind of acceptance deserved some kind of reward. "Come on, let's see if we can get a minute alone and you can lotion me up."

And as they walked away, Tenchi had to wonder if the path he had seemed to end up pointing towards was the one he was going to journey to the end with.


xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx



Yep. That's it. Felt better to end it like this than with a bang (no pun intended). No, there's no plans for a sequel, though it is quite possible I'll use some of the new characters (that survived) in another fic. Any last questions and comments would be greatly appreciated, as always. Including any summations of how the entire story worked and anything else

Thanks for reading. (BTW: Aqua Regia is really a mixture of nitric and hydrochloric acids that dissolves gold or platinum. I thought that one was kind of obvious. See, you learn something new every day ^_^)

D.B. Sommer