The follow story is a work of fan fiction using characters that are copyrighted and/or trademarked. The purpose of this story is for fan enjoyment only free of charge. All original content is protected by Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License.
Michael "TheZorch" Haney's
"Look Who's Coming To Dinner
or If You Can't Stand The Heat Get Out of the Lake of Fire!"
Nabiki stuck extra close to Ranma as they walked home. She often prided herself as the only one in the household who was able to keep her cool no matter the situation. Ranma's arrival has certainly brought its fair share of excitement to the Tendo home. Crazy situations were the norm most of the time. The only other member of the household who didn't go ape-shit when something hit the fan was Kasumi. Though she seemed oblivious to the happenings around her. Nabiki knew differently. Truth be told, Kasumi was much smarter and more observant than she often let on.
Rarely, very rarely, did the middle Tendo sister loose her cool or actually get scared. Ok, there was that time she and her sisters thought someone was breaking into the house, and later it turned out to be a piglet. Of course, Nabiki figured out a long time ago "who" that piglet was. She had an educated guess as to why Ranma wasn't spilling the beans. May heaven have mercy on Ryoga, because when Akane finally wises up to the truth mercy won't be in her vocabulary. Oh, there was that other time they all thought Kasumi had turned psychopathic on them, when they all went out to dinner, and forgot to invite her. How could they have ever doubted their sweet, kind hearted older sister. Even when she was possessed by that escaped oni she wasn't really dangerous. Somehow Kasumi made being evil look cute.
No, rarely did something truly frighten Tendo Nabiki … until now.
She held tight to Ranma's arm. Grasped it with both arms and held him close to her side. If someone in the neighborhood stared at them she didn't really care. Ranma on his part didn't seem to mind either. That was a pretty far cry from the old Ranma, who shied away from any close contact with a girl. If any of the other iinazuke saw her like this there would be World War III, but she wasn't as concerned about that as she was about the person walking beside them. That is, if you could really classify the blond as a person. She looked human enough, but Nabiki knew better. Her experience with Ranma, the curses, and all of the other insanity that surrounded him taught her one very important lesson … appearances were often "very" deceiving.
All she knew was this person was named Mara. Ranma called her a demon. Considering the fact that Ranma was now an honest to goodness Kami added a great deal of credibility to that statement. The way he put himself between her and Nabiki also added to it. Ranma was always protective of girls even if he had often been afraid of intimacy. He was treating this woman like he often did his most volatile opponents. Opponents like Pantyhose Taro and that Prince Herb guy Akane had told her about. She never met the Musk Prince/Princess, and was pretty glad she never did.
The demoness was seething with rage. Nabiki saw her look over at Ranma periodically. Every time she did she both got angrier and angrier. She got the impression the "woman" was being torn by two contrasting desires. As they walked home Ranma explained to Nabiki in hushed tones how the former first-class, unlimited demoness, now second-class, unlimited became infatuated with him due to all of the chaos that surrounded him. He, as in Ranma, had been unaware of this, but Urd did and often teased Mara over it. The demoness supposedly hated humans, and here she was falling in loved with one. The two contrasting desired turned out to be her love for Ranma and her completely hatred for Urd.
With Ranma and Urd now joined as one being Mara didn't know whether to blast him to bits or drag him off somewhere secluded and rid him like his namesake.
"Why are we taking her home?" Nabiki asked Ranma with a whisper.
He looked over at the demoness and whispered in rely, "She already knows where I live, if we ran and somehow lost her she'd eventually show up at the dojo anyway."
"But, what about Akane?" Nabiki worried.
"Let me worry about that, I won't let Mara hurt her," he reassured her.
Mara stopped, grabbed her long hair and let out a blood curdling scream of frustration. The other two didn't stop to look back and stopped only when Mara ran in front of them. The demoness eyed Nabiki with an uncomfortably hostile stare. Ranma moved her behind him and way from Mara.
"Under normal circumstances I applaud your underhanded dealings Tendo Nabiki," the demoness pointed her finger at the Tendo mercenary. "But when you use them on my Ranma-sama I take great exception!"
"What are you rattling on about now," Ranma groused.
Mara looked into his eyes, they flashed back and forth between adoration and hatred. It showed just how severely conflicted the demoness' emotions were. "She's got something on you, doesn't she, that's why you're letting her get so close to you." she accused turned her eyes to the middle Tendo sister.
"Nabiki is my iinazuke," he came right out and said shocking Nabiki with how casually he was able to admit it. Getting used to his new Ranma certainly was going to take some time.
Mara looked confused. "Huh?!"
She leaned forward showing off her generous cleavage and looked at Nabiki. "I thought you were engaged to that little psychopathic dick tease," she growled.
Nabiki smirked, she'd heard other women who were after Ranma call Akane all kinds of different names but this was a first. "Psychopathic", well that might actually be partially accurate of the old Akane before the incident, but "dick tease"? A dick tease by definition actually tries to get the attention of boys only to deny them "access" when they get close enough. Akane may be many things but she's certainly not a dick tease. A flirt, whether she realizes it or not, certainly. Besides, if Nabiki's guess was right Akane's "interests" lay in a different direction.
The trio arrived at Tendo-ke and went straight to the family room after leaving their shoes at the genkan. Soun and Genma were in their usual spot on the back porch sucking down sake and playing/cheating at Shoji. Neither of them noticed Ranma and Nabiki's guest. The leather clad blond sat brooding up a storm that would have impressed the old Akane. She was torn between her complicated "frienemy" relationship she often had with Urd and her puppy-love crush she had for the chaos nexus. They were one and the same now, thus she was torn. What she wasn't indecisive about what she was going to do to the person who made their merger possible. Oh, she was thinking of some really creative ways to torment the fool who hurt her Ranma-sama. Oh, yes, she was going to make them see hell. Quite literally actually.
If Ranma was worried he didn't show it. Akane had yet to come home from wherever she went, and the fact she wasn't there when they arrived was sort of a good thing. Ranma was certain Mara would suspect her as the most likely suspect. He had no intention of letting Mara hurt Akane, at least not in any serious non-reversible manner. He'd already forgiven Akane for what happened. She was making an effort to change, yes she slipped up once, but overall she was making an effort and that's what really mattered. Taking the pressure of the engagement off of her was the best way to help her. Now he had to make sure she lived long enough to make herself into a better person.
Nabiki wasn't sure what to think. She had a goddess and a demoness sitting in her family's house. That alone would have been enough to make most people go mad. But, weird shit like this was par for the course where Ranma was concerned. Chaos seemed to follow him like it was a natural part of his body. It was a palpable force which exerted itself at random times, often in ways which usually lead to Ranma getting nailed with a mallet, Ranma gaining a new iinazuke, Ranma gaining a new rival/enemy, or Akane getting kidnapped by the villain of the week. That last one hadn't happened in a long while, so something had to happen to balance things out. Yes, the rule of law in Nerima-ku was if hell wasn't breaking loose it just meant the tsunami hadn't hit yet.
"Ara, who is our guest?"
Mara gasped, she had no idea Belldandy was here. It took just a short glance at Kasumi to see she wasn't that annoying goody two-shoes goddess, but the aura of peace and calm the mortal was giving off was pretty unsettling. If Kasumi noticed the blond's reaction she didn't seem to show it.
"Mara, Kasumi," Ranma waved back and forth between the two women. "Kasumi, Mara."
Kasumi gave their guest a happy closed-eye smile, the kind Belldandy was famous for and it made the demoness shudder. "Would you care for some tea?"
"Yes please," said Ranma before Mara could speak. Nabiki, always observant didn't miss Mara's expression and smirked. She guessed at where the demoness' apprehension was coming from. Her big sister and a certain kind-hearted goddess had very similar demeanors. If this demoness knew Urd then it stood to reason she also knew Belldandy. If there was one thing Nabiki was good at it was putting two and two together. She was no fool, and Mara's discomfort was funny.
Kasumi headed straight for the kitchen. "Alright, I'll have it ready in a moment." she said over her shoulder.
"What are you looking at?" Mara gazed at Nabiki with a look that promised pain.
The Tendo mercenary didn't bat and eye. "Nothing at all," she said. "Ranma, wouldn't you say Kasumi is a lot like your imotochan?" Ranma nodded.
"Yeah, she's a lot like Belldandy." he replied. He knew where she was going with this. He knew the demoness never really could handle Belldandy's kind, cheerful and caring nature. It made him feel pride in his iinazuke, she was already figuring out which buttons to push on Mara. Of course, he was an expert at pushing Mara's buttons or Urd had been at least.
"Alright, where's the mallet bitch?" Mara demanded. Kasumi came in with their drinks and sat them on the kotetsu table before going back into the kitchen, she told them dinner would be ready in twenty minutes.
"How should I know, I ain't her keeper," Ranma said taking a sip of his tea.
Nabiki did the same and made no effort to volunteer any information. "If I find out she's the one who caused this she's dead!" Mara threatened, her eyes glowing red.
Ranma sighed, he knew when Mara was seriously pissed. Ok, Mara was almost always pissed except when things were going her way. That was also just before things went out of control. Most of Mara's schemes usually ended up blowing up in her face, literally. The demoness was not immune to Murphy's Law. Her schemes usually ended up being like a giant fan sitting at the top of a hill, turned on full blast and a horde of monkeys are at the bottom armed and ready to hurl with Murphy on the sidelines eager to watch the brown, stinky carnage. That wasn't to say the demoness wasn't dangerous. Oh she was dangerous, just none too smart, and that usually wasn't a good combination.
Those words were like the shot heard around the world. Tendo Akane hadn't made it one foot into the family room before a leather clad blond stranger jumped up and pointed a shaking finger straight at her.
"YOU!" Mara snarled.
"Huh?!" the youngest Tendo just blink-blinked at the busty blond. The fact that she'd been sitting next to Ranma hadn't registered in her mind yet. She was too preoccupied with the fact said blond was now holding two fireballs in her hands. It wasn't like it really matter anyway, she wasn't engaged to him anymore.
"TENDO AKANE PREPARE TO DIE!!!"
"What the hell did I do to you and who the hell are you anyway?" Akane shouted back, her anger growing by leaps and bounds.
"Ranma, why is your girlfriend threatening my little girl?!" Soun's demon head demanded. Ranma didn't flinch though. That technique did nothing to him anymore but annoy him. He raised a finger, zapped the inflated apparition making it fly around like a popped balloon and calmly took another sip of his tea.
"Why oh why must I have such an ungrateful son!" Genma sobbed before a ball of water that emerged from the pond hit him upside the head turning him panda. He looked over at his son in time to see him lower his hand, the tip of his middle finger still glowing slightly from the spell he just cast.
"YOU DID THIS!!!" Mara yelled pointing at Ranma. "BECAUSE OF YOU THEY'RE LIKE THIS!!!"
Nabiki tapped him on the shoulder. "Ranma?" she looked over at her sister worriedly. She didn't believe for a minute that he'd allow Mara to hurt Akane but it didn't mean she still wasn't worried. Mara was a demon after all and Akane just an ordinary human.
"It was a mistake," Akane said meekly. "I never intended to hurt him, them, I just got so angry and I didn't think. I did something horrible, it cost two people so much but despite what I did he forgave me. But, I don't really deserve his forgiveness. I don't even deserve his love." She looked away, a stray tear falling down her cheek.
"So you admit it," said Mara, her eyes growing angrier.
Akane replied, "Yes, I admit it, its time I started taking responsibility for my actions." Ranma smiled, this indeed progress for her. He stood up and put his hand on Mara's shoulder.
"Let it go," he told her.
"NEVER!" the demoness cried but before she could strike with her fireballs Ranma snapped his fingers and the radio sitting next to the television switched on. The monkeys took aim ...
Welcome to the jungle
We got fun 'n' games
We got everything you want
Honey we know the names
We are the people that can find
Whatever you may need
If you got the money honey
We got your disease
… and they left fly while Murphy laughed his ass off! Mara's fireballs fizzled out and she started dancing in the middle of the family room. Nabiki and Akane stared at her in disbelief. One second the leather clad bimbo looked angry enough to tear the head off a lion and the next she was head banging to Guns N' Roses. Ranma started laughing his head off and the father's looked at him as if he's suddenly grown a third head.
"Why you," Mara groused as she danced around the room. "Turn it off Urd! Turn it off now!" She bounded and twirled around the room banging her head making her long blond hair fly.
Ranma regained control of himself and said, "Call me Ranma now, and I'll turn it off if you promise to control yourself." He noticed the two Tendo sisters looking at him. Nabiki's expression demanded explanation.
"Whenever Mara hears rock n' roll she starts to dance uncontrollably." he explained.
Akane replied, "That's stupid, why does she do that?" She watched the blond really get into the chorus of the song moving her body faster making her large assets bounce. It took some effort for her to tear her eyes away.
"She's a demoness second class unlimited," he said nonchalantly. Which made Akane's eyes nearly bug out of her head. Kasumi looked out of the kitchen to see what was going on and cheered and clapped as she watched the blond dance around. The fathers reacted just about as bad if not worse. They heard "demon", immediately thoughts of the "Master" hit them and suddenly made themselves scarce. Ranma watched the two cowards run off.
"Make it stop, mommy make it stop!!!" Mara cried as the radio transitioned into an Alice in Chains tune. Her eyes spun and twirled with dizziness from her frantic dancing.
"A demoness, as in from hell, fire and brimstone and all that?" Akane asked looking at the dancing woman in awe. It wasn't too hard to believe, Ranma was a kami after all in both male and female forms.
"Nifelhelm," he corrected her. "Its called Nifelhelm, not hell, and its a world of ice not fire." Ranma snapped his fingers again and the radio switched off. Mara, exhausted, collapsed to the floor huffing and puffing.
"Oh my, that was quite entertaining Mara-san." Kasumi cheered before going back into the kitchen. The demoness, still dizzy, just grumbled to herself about Belldandy clones.
Ranma turned to her. "Now will you behave or would you like some more," he held up his hand, fingers poised to snap again.
"That was a dirty trick," the demoness accused as she slowly got back to her feet which where still a bit shaky.
Ranma gave her a Kasumi-esque smile. "Yes I know,"
Nabiki couldn't take it anymore and flopped onto her back laughing. The demoness looked so hilarious dancing around the room, she couldn't handle it. "Laugh it up Vader hair!" Mara groused.
"Hey, at least I'm not wearing half a cow." Nabiki laughed sitting up and taking a sip of her tea.
Ranma laughed, "That's a good one, I'll have to remember it." He gave his iinazuke a thumbs up, took his seat and then took a drink of his tea.
"Excuse me, but why is their a demon in my house?" Akane demanded now that the initial shock of the encounter was finally over. She stood staring daggers into the blond with her hands on her hips, one fist was holding Mallet-sama which had manifested there on its own.
"She has a crush on me, the guy me, cause I'm a chaos nexus," Ranma explained, but that just puzzled the angry girl and Nabiki both.
Akane blink-blinked. "A chaos nexus?"
"A wonderfully rare jewel," Mara said almost swooning. "A mortal around which the ebb and flow of the chaotic energies of the universe converge and become a howling, broiling maelstrom! Oh the beauty of such a roaring hurricane of chaos! The incredible sound is like a dark under-worldly symphony, a chorus of maddening power blasting into the sky! Oh, yes!!!! Ahhhh!!!!!" The woman closed her eyes, hugged herself and shuddered with a beaming smile on her face.
"Did she just orgasm?" Nabiki said more then asked a bit shocked. That took effort, with all the crap that happened around Ranma she stopped being shocked a long time ago.
Akane scowled, "She's a pervert and a demon!" To Ranma it looked like Mallet-sama just got two sizes bigger. Akane in anti-pervert mode was almost unstoppable. He imagined hearing the Terminator theme song in his head as he watched the youngest Tendo sister stalk up to the swooning demoness.
Mara looked up just in time to see the hammer incoming.
"HENTAI NO BAKA!" SLAM!!!!
Mara went flying out of the family room and slammed back first into the privacy wall leaving an indent. She stuck there for several minutes stunned by the ki enhanced blow. Akane crossed her arms and turned away sticking her nose in the air with a huff.
"Nice backhand, but you would have gotten better force if you just twisted your waist a bit on the up swing." said Ranma. Akane blushed and thanked him. Nabiki muttered something about martial artists and rolled her eyes. Kasumi did her usual "oh my" and went back to finishing dinner.
A few minutes later Mara shook her head to clear it and began pulling herself from the wall. "Ok beotch," she growled. "ITS SO ON!" Summoning her fireballs again the demoness snarled and hurled herself at Akane. The youngest Tendo sister let out an eep and ran for it. The two started racing around the room in some weird parody of a Scooby-Doo cartoon chase scene.
"Oh good grief!" Ranma sighed, got up and summoned a magic circle. A tanuki statue rose up from the center the circle just as Akane ran by. Mara slammed it into it, not that she was in a condition to really notice it. Arches of what looked like electricity hit her and she screamed for a few minutes before falling over. She twitched on the floor, gray smoke rising from her body.
Ranma explained, "Mara's biggest weakness is good luck charms." It wasn't Bushido to tell others about an enemy's secrets but the Urd side of him didn't care so much about adhere to that ancient code anymore. All it had ever done for him was cause him trouble in the past anyway. Nabiki pondered this, she wasn't all that superstitious but did keep a rabbit's foot in her purse. She smiled as she finally now had a legitimate reason for having the thing.
"Now behave or go away," Ranma said to the demoness when it looked like she was recovering. "You can stay for dinner but I'm not letting you hurt Akane." The demoness climbed to her feet and went to the kotetsu. Akane also went to the table and the two sat there staring daggers at one another.
Mara sipped her tea. "Damn, it even tastes like Belldandy's!" she groused.
"I want your promise you will not do anything to directly harm Akane," Ranma stared at the demoness. The expression on his face was one Mara was familiar with. It was often the same look Urd gave her many times. "Promise," he said again.
"Fine, fine, I give my word as a demoness I won't do anything to harm one hair on her head." Mara relented with a dismissive wave and went back to sipping her tea.
Nabiki whispered, "A lot of good a promise from a demon will do."
"Remember what I said about promises and Kami?" Nabiki nodded at him. "Well its the same for demons, if they make a promise they have to keep it. Don'tcha Mara-chan." He looked over the brooding blond and did his best Belldandy/Kasumi closed eye smile. All it did was annoy her.
Dinner thankfully went by without any complications. Mara, good to her word, behaved herself. The fathers stayed a good distance from the woman who brooded and moaned under her breather about having to keep dammed promises. She occasionally shared with Ranma while Akane occasionally threw daggers at the woman with her eyes. At the start of dinner Mara had complimented Kasumi on her cooking. She compared it to and said it was better than Belldandy's. Ranma felt Kasumi was a very excellent cook, but Bell's was still better in his opinion. Both women put their heart, soul and love in whatever they cooked and to him that was all that really mattered in the end.
"Well, I should be going," Mara sighed, taking the last sip of a cup of sake Kasumi had brought to the table for dinner. "Got mortal to corrupt to the dark side and all that jazz. You know how it is." The fathers eeped with fear and grabbed each other like frightened schoolgirls.
"Aww, and here I thought you could stay for desert," Ranma said sarcastically. Glad to see the demoness was about to go. He knew he could take her in a fight if it came down to that but he'd rather not put too much more on the girls for the time begin.
Kasumi quickly got up and went to the kitchen. "Ara, I almost forgot about the desert." Nabiki just rolled her eyes. Sometimes her sister pulled off that oblivious act "way" too well.
"Sorry, but I've got to check in with the office anyway," Mara replied getting up from the kotetsu. She went to the back porch and looked around at the yard.
"See you around Ur … I mean Ranma-sama," the blond purred before stepping out into the yard.
Ranma replied, "Say hello to mother for me." He knew the reaction that would get. Mara contorted with an exaggerated cringe. The subject of Hild always did that to the former demoness first class. It put a smile on Ranma's lips to see that at least hadn't changed. Though, inwardly he was worried. Mom would indeed come to visit, and sometime soon. That was going to be an interesting day. If the fathers cringed and whimpered like little schoolgirls when just a regular run-of-the-mill demoness was around what would they do if the Mistress of Nifelhelm herself came over for dinner?
"I'll do that," Mara said over her shoulder as she summoned a gate. It appeared as a ring of runes and other patterns on the ground, which she stopped into the middle of and descended into. As she vanished the blond threw one last eye dagger at the youngest Tendo who threw it right back.
"This isn't over mallet bitch," said Mara just before vanishing.
When Mara was gone Akane slapped her palms against the kotetsu making all of the dishes jump briefly. "Who the hell does that bitch think she is?" she growled, her battle aura showing.
Ranma didn't blame her for being mad. At least Mara's presence brought the girl out of the deep depression she'd been in that morning. He didn't fail to notice that not once did Akane get mad at him. That was a good sign. She didn't seem all that concern that Mara sat next to him either. Also a very good sign.
Nabiki looked at Ranma curiously, something he said bothered her. "What was that about mother?" she asked him.
"Yes, boy, how does that demon know your mother?" Genma asked, now recovered from acting like a frightened animal.
Ranma sighed, "She's Urd's mother, so indirectly she's my mother also. Her name is Hild." They all looked at one another. None of them knew the name, so it was obvious none of them knew Norse mythology.
"She's Kami-sama's counterpart," he said and Nabiki gasped and cringed. He knew the girl would pick up on what he said almost immediately. The girl was smart after all. The fathers and Akane just blink-blinked and looked at him waiting for him to continue.
"Her name is Hild, she's the ruler of Nifelhelm and lord of the all the demons," he continued with a sigh, rolling his eyes and twirling his finger in the air like it was a big deal. It was an Urd mannerism which survived the assimilation.
"NANI!!!!" Soun screamed before passing out. THUD! Ranma rolled his eyes at the pathetic man.
Akane and Nabiki both gasped, "You're mother is the ruler of hell?!"
"Nifelhelm," he corrected. "Hell is a Christian concept which doesn't really exist."
"Ara, wouldn't that make Ranma the Prince of Hell?" said Kasumi. It was the fat panda-man's turn to pass out.
The pigtailed martial artist face-faltered. "Kasumi, that isn't helping," he deadpanned.
Ranma knew he had to have a talk with Akane. She seemed to be over what happened that morning far too quickly. He knocked on her door and heard her response, when he said who it was he surprised by her opening the door almost immediately. Entering the room, Ranma noticed that she'd cleaned it up and there were some open books and a stack of papers on her desk. He briefly glanced at them, it was the homework that Akane had missed.
Akane closed the door behind him and went to the desk. "I went out for a walk today and ended up at Yuka's place just as she got home from school," she admitted. That explained why she wasn't at home when they got home today.
"Don't worry," she continued. "I didn't say anything about the Kami stuff, she wondered how you recovered so fast and I just explained you were always a fast healer."
Ranma asked her, "So are you going to pull a Kasumi too?" She didn't turn to look at him.
"No," she said meekly. Her shoulders shook and he heard her cry softly. He slowly went to her and pulled her into his arms. She resisted for a moment then buried her face into his chest and sobbed. He said nothing, just cooed softly in her ear and gently petted her head. It hurt to see her like this, he did forgive her and still loved her in a way. They couldn't be together, not like before, if she was going to get better.
Eventually she stopped crying and he left her go. She sat back in her chair and looked away. "Thanks, I needed that," she said.
"A part of me still loves you," he admitted. "It must have taken a lot of courage to tell our fathers what you did about the engagement."
She wiped a tear from her eye and took a tissue from a box on her desk. "When I realized the horror that I'd done I realized that I didn't deserve to be engaged to you anymore." she said almost crying.
"I know the whole engagement thing's been stressful for you," Ranma said softly. "When I came here you were being tormented by Kuno and a bunch of perverts at the school. You thought I was a girl at first, then you found out I wasn't and we were suddenly engaged. A lot of stress can make people do stupid things."
Akane replied, "Still, I should have had better control. Because of me you're the way you are now." She wiped her eyes some more.
"No, because of oyagi I'm like this," he told her. "Because of the Nekoken training Urd had to step in and save me. Only way she could do that was to merge with me, so we were already one when I cam here. Sooner or later we had to finish it or we'd both die." He didn't mention because of her they joined sooner than Urd has expected but he left that unsaid. The girl was feeling bad enough as it was.
Akane got up and went to her shelves. She looked at the framed photos. There was one of her and Ranma at a local festival. In some ways it could be called their first date, though neither of them would admit that it was. Another was taken of them not long after the cherry blossom mark incident, and there was one of her, Ranma, Shampoo and Ukyo together after the hot spring race.
"We've been through a lot," she said. "Doesn't seem like its only been a year and a half." It seemed longer than that for some reason to the young girl.
"Are you regretting your decision?" he asked her wondering if maybe she was having second thoughts about them ending the engagement. She dissuaded his fears by shaking her head. The fathers were downstairs right now scheming. They didn't know about the agreement he and Nabiki made yet.
"No," she answered picking up one of the pictures and hugging it to her chest. "The engagement is what really got to me most. It wasn't really you at all, but I took it out on you and that was wrong of me. It was just my resentment for not being able to decide for myself. My father, Kuno, the boys at school, they were all taking away my right to choose.
Ranma smiled, this was indeed progress. "So, what have you decided?" he asked, he felt he had to.
"Remember when you first came," she said. "I said "you want to be friends"." She looked over her shoulder and saw him nod.
She blushed and said, "Why I was really mad that you were a boy was because it broke my heart that you weren't a girl for real."
"Why's that?" he asked her, but he had a funny feeling he knew why. Someone was coming out of the closet.
"I … like … girls," she blushed and looked away, too embarrassed to look at him. He could see one of her ears, it was candy apple red from the intense blush that must be on her face. She herself couldn't believe she just told him her deepest, darkest secret. One she never told anyone else about except on other person, and to her surprise that other person felt the same way.
He sighed, "I had a feeling it was something like that." He laughed and scratched the back of his head.
"I mean, it explains why you always looked at me funny when I was a girl," he continued. "I always thought it was cause you were jealous of my bigger boobs."
Akane scratched her chin nervously, "Well, yeah, I was jealous." A blue-ish light reflected off the wall and she heard the sound of water. She whirled around and found herself looking at Ranma's platinum blond girl half. Her wet silk shirt stuck to her body. It was obvious she wasn't wearing a bra. Not hiding her feelings anymore, Akane couldn't help but stare and admit the girl's figure. She felt herself get moist and blushed furiously.
"So all this time what you really wanted to do was bury your face in these," Ranma said pushing her breasts together and giving them a squeeze. He saw the younger girl's eyes glaze over and a drip of blood come from her nose.
Akane shook her self out of it and looked away. "Hell yes!" she blurted out, and covered her mouth in surprise. "I mean, yeah," she corrected herself. "It also scared me, I didn't want people to think I was a freak or a pervert for feeling this way, so I hid it and the more I hid it the angrier I got." She'd been hiding her feelings and urges for so long behind a mask of anger that it felt liberating to be able express them now. But, it still worried her how others would see her.
"There ain't nothing wrong with how you feel," Ranma told her. "Heck, there are Kami who are lesbians!" Many religions said homosexuality was wrong or a "sin". Truth was "Religion" was a human concept created from one person's or a group's views which they imposed on others calling it the will of the Gods. The truth was the kami didn't care either way. If you loved someone and that someone happened to be the same sex, so what.
Heck, there was scientific proof of homosexuality among animals!
"I don't think you're a freak or a pervert," he told her.
"Thanks," she said finally turning to face her. "So, I guess our fathers are scheming about the engagement right now. Who do you think you'll be engaged to now?" She felt a little sad about the end of their engagement, but she didn't feel she deserved him anymore. He was the only boy she ever felt this way about. That would define her as bisexual in a way, but did it really count as bisexual if your feelings were only for one person?
Ranma laughed, "Already talked to Nabiki about it. We've decided to give it a try, but we haven't told our fathers yet."
Akane's eyes went wide. "Nabiki?" she gasped disbelievingly. "After all those times she's taken advantage of you?" She knew it had to be her or Kasumi. Akane was expecting Ranma to pick Kasumi as the most obvious choice. She could cook really well, was very beautiful, and unlike Nabiki never used him to make money.
Ranma shrugged making her assets bounce and causing Akane's eyes to glaze over again. "Eh, we sorta kinda worked out those issues, we've got an agreement going." Ranma told her, scratching the back of her head.
"I'm going to go back to school tomorrow," said Akane. "I've got to stop hiding here crying over something I can't undo. And, I also can't continue living wearing a mask either." She looked up at the redhead and smiled. To Ranma it was perhaps the most beautiful smile she's ever seen on the young girl's face. A few tears ran down Akane's cheeks.
"I've been hiding from who I really am," she continued, her voice cracking. "I let it bottle up inside me and fester. All because I've been afraid. Afraid of my feelings, these urges, how people would perceive me if they ever learned the truth. But, mostly I think I was afraid of letting daddy know. He's pretty traditional, I was also so afraid of disappointing him, so I pretended to be a normal straight girl."
And Ranma said, "And then you went to Furinken and met Kuno. He wouldn't take no for an answer, then the speech the baka made that started the morning fights, and then I came along." She could now fully understand why Akane was such a mess. She'd been under way more stress than Ranma had ever realized. It was a wonder something like this hadn't already happed to Kuno. The youngest Tendo had been a ticking emotional time bomb with a hair trigger. No wonder she was always so prone to quick outbursts of blind rage.
No one person was to blame for this situation. Ranma had thought it was brought on by Kuno and the Hentai Horde, but Akane's problem date back much further than that.
"How old were you when you realized you liked girls?" she asked Akane.
The taller girl thought for a moment. "I was twelve," she admitted. "In school I had a friend named Mika, her family moved away a few years ago when her father got a promotion at his job. We were really good friends."
"So, you started having feelings for Mika?" Ranma asked her.
Akane blushed and replied, "Actually, she was the one who started having feelings for me." The taller girl sat on her bed and beckoned Ranma to sit next to her.
"We were having a sleep over at her place," she explained. "Yuka and Sayuri were there too. It was night time, the other girls were asleep. I was still awake, I thought I was the only one but Mika was awake too until she crawled out from under her blankets and came over to me. She looked down at me, I could see she'd been crying in the dim light coming from the window. Then, very quietly she said "I can't hide it anymore, I'm sorry Akane-chan, I love you" and she closed her eyes and leaned down and …. kissed me … on the lips." The young girl blushed brightly for a moment.
"Wow," Ranma breathed. "Then what?"
Akane blushed again and replied, "I'm not sure what came over me. Everything I've ever been taught growing up said girls liking other girls was wrong, but her kissing me like that felt so right for some reason. I found myself returning her kiss and I put my arms around her, and pulled up down close to me." Now the girl was really blushing, her ears were candy apple red and she looked like steam was about to shoot out of them.
"And then … I still don't know what came over me," she said covering her face, embarrassed. "I put my hand down the front of her panties and put my finger in her …. oh my Kami-sama I can't believe I'm telling someone this! We … we … our friends were right there in the room sleeping, and we were right in the middle kissing and … rubbing … and …. I can't say it!" Akane flopped down on the bed and hid her face from him to hide the 3rd degree blush on her face.
Ranma's eyes bulged, "You had lesbian sex with your friends sleeping next to you guys! And, they didn't notice?" Akane didn't sit up but she did shake her head no that they didn't.
"WOW!" Ranma responded, it was the only response she could give. And Akane had been calling him a hentai all this time, but she didn't say anything about it.
"We didn't, you know ..." she sat up, stuck her tongue out and wiggled it. "Just rubbed … with our fingers." She was still blushing but at least she didn't look like she was about to burst into flames.
"... but it was still good," she admitted with a nostalgic smile.
Then, a cloud seemed to cover her face and she said, "A few days after that happened there was an uproar in the neighborhood. One of the neighbors, a young girl named Koiyuki who babysat me and my sister had decided to come out of the closet. Her parents were devastated and kicked her out of the house. Talk spread all over the neighborhood about it. Father and the other parents went on the warpath, they started asking all of us questions … like did she molested any of us when she babysat or not. Which she didn't, of course, but they didn't really listen to what we had to say. In the end Koiyuki's family had to move away. Nobody in the neighborhood would talk to them anymore and they wouldn't let their kids play with their son who was Nabiki's. I was so scared that daddy would kick me out of the house too, so I hid how I felt. It was also around the same time Mika's family moved away too, because they didn't want their daughter to live in a neighborhood where a pervert lived." A single tear fell down her cheek.
So, it was blind intolerance and prejudice that started this whole shit-storm. It finally put everything into perspective for fully assimilated goddess/martial artist. The parents overreacted, went completely overboard and nearly ruined the lives of several people for no damn good reason. One of them, the the young girl next to her, was probably hurt the most by this whole mess. Except for that poor Koiyuki, who lost her family because of prejudice. Ironically, it the man who was the most protective of Akane who had hurt her the most … her father. What a cluster-fuck!
Japan was changing and society was becoming more accepting of homosexuality. Well, the younger generation was more open-minded. The older generation wasn't, they were pretty close minded. In a few generations the more open-minded ones will be the ones in power, and the more right-wing ultra-conservatives who ran things would become a distant memory. To Ranma ultra-conservatism was a disease, nothing good ever came from it. According to the news and rumors at school the Americans were learning that lesson the hard way.
"So this whole farce is actually your father's fault," she commented still compiling all of what had been said.
Akane didn't had a retort for Ranma's comment, because she knew it was true. Ever since that day she lived a lie because she feared her father's prejudice.
"What are you going to do now?" Ranma asked her.
Akane took on a determined expression and said, "I'm not hiding behind my mask anymore. If daddy can't accept me for who I really am then its his loss. If he kicks me out of the house I can always go live with Auntie Shizumi in Osaka. She's openly lesbian, which is why daddy won't let her come to visit us … but I sneak behind his back and see her every once in a while when she's in town on business."
Ranma smiled, "Good for you, and I won't let that baka kick you out. He abandoned you girls when you needed him after your mother passed away. He abandoned you emotionally, withdrew into himself instead of trying to keep his family together. You're sisters sacrificed their childhoods to save the family. He doesn't have the right to kick you out."
"Thank you," Akane whipped a tear from her eye and hugged the smaller girl.
Sasuke made his nightly rounds in Kuno-ke, checking the traps and security alarms to make sure they were ready for the night. The family he served has a lot of enemies, and not just the ones who lived in Nerima. No, these were enemies who make people like Ranma look like saints. The Kuno clan fortune can partially be traced back to the time when they were a powerful and influential Samurai clan, but greater half of their wealth came from several enterprises. Not all of them were legal.
Leaping from the wall that surrounded the compound he alighted to the roof just above his mistresses bedroom. Every night he would check up on Mistress Kodachi to make sure she was alright. On some occasions he found her passed out from an accidental exposure to some of the exotic chemicals she worked with. Many of those being highly illegal drugs, which she made herself from the flowers in her garden. The other reason, he kept to himself. One time he looked through her bedroom window and saw something he didn't expect. Enraptured, he watched a naked Kodachi, laying on her bed masturbating while admiring a full sized picture of her Ranma-sama. He accidentally looked into his master's room while he was banging a sex doll which almost perfectly resembled the redhead Master Tatawake was obsessed with. Sasuke was still recovering from the mental scares.
This night, Sasuke heard voices coming from Kodachi's room. He didn't remember his charges having any visits tonight. Looking in he saw his mistress talking animated to a strange looking woman. She was a blond who wore a tight outfit of mostly black leather. It was quite obvious that the blond was gaijin. Her European features were unmistakable, yet she was speaking perfect Japanese.
"So, you are saying that with that I can make my Ranma-sama mine?" Kodachi asked the blond. She looked at the small bottle in the gaijin woman's hands.
Mara gestured with the bottle and said, "Oh, yes. One sip of this special potion and you will gain the power to finally overcome the influence of Tendo Akane and the pigtailed girl." She handed the small bottle over to Kodachi.
"You are giving this to me for free?" Kodachi asked, suspicious that this stranger who came out of nowhere would give her such a gift and ask for nothing in return.
Mara just smiled and replied, "My only payment is that you find the happiness you so deserve."
The blond gave Sasuke an uneasy feeling. There was something about her that didn't seem right. All of his ninja instincts were tell him something was very wrong here. Before he could act he watch as his mistress opened the bottle and drank its contents down in one gulp. He prepared to jump into the room to grab his mistress and run for it to the nearest doctor, but something stopped him. He felt it first, then saw it. A change overcame his mistress, her eyes grew crueler and more manic than usual. His instincts were screaming at him to run away, far away!
"I can feeling it," Kodachi gasped. "I can feel the power flowing through me! I can do this, I can finally rid myself of that a wretched pigtailed girl and that vile Tendo Akane!"
She narrowed her eyes. "And I know exactly how to deal with Tendo-san," she said evilly. A vile plan forming in her head. Mara smiled wickedly as she left. She'd get her revenge, and do it without breaking her promise. It was the perfect plan.
If only she had known what Kodachi were planning, and what consequences it would have.
Akane didn't reveal her coming out of the closet to her father that night. She wanted to wait for the right time to spring it on him when he was most vulnerable. That night Ranma and Nabiki headed the baka brothers off at the pass by announcing their engagement, which made them happy. Of course, they tried to summon a priest to the house almost immediately but a lightning bolt from Ranma put an end to that. The new couple made it clear that there was to be no interference in their relationship. Ranma promised pain and heaven's retribution, and Nabiki promised her own brand of punishment. Needless to say, the fathers were pissing themselves by the end of the night.
The next morning Akane did get ready for school. She walked with Ranma and Nabiki to campus and quickly went on to class to talk to her friends. Akane had gone to see Yuka yesterday. Considering what she told him, he suspected he knew why. Nabiki could tell Ranma knew something, there was enough of his old mannerisms left in him that she could tell, but when she asked he told her it wasn't his story to tell. Not yet anyway. Kuno was surprisingly absent that morning, as were a lot of the boys who were former members of the Hentai Horde. This didn't bother Ranma to much, when they were scarce around Akane it mean no stress for her. It was when he noticed two of the ex-HHers were missing from class he started to wonder what was going on. He still didn't think there was anything bad going on, it was just odd.
When it was time Akane made her way to the girl's locker room for gym. As she entered strangely the room was empty. She was certain she didn't get there late and thus missed the other girls. She had hoped that she might get to ogle them like she usually did without them noticing. Guessing that she must have got the time wrong she went to her locker and pulled it open. A plume of white smoke hit her in the face and she felt her body go limp. She was totally aware but couldn't get her body to respond. As she fell she clenched her eyelids, one of the only things she could still move, and tried to brace for the fall as best she could. Someone caught her, she felt soft hands catch her and felt her body pressed against someone with impressive breasts.
When she opened her eyes she began to panic. The girl holding her was Kuno Kodachi, and her eyes had a manic look to them. More so than they usually did, something was very wrong here.
"Wicked harridan," she spat. "Your vile scheme to defile my Ranma-sama will not succeed. Today you pay for your crimes. The punishment you will receive this day will be most fitting." The disturbed gymnast laid her on the ground and began to strip off Akane's uniform. Akane tried to resist, but she still wasn't able to move. After the last article of clothing was tossed to the side Kodachi unceremoniously picked Akane up fireman style and carried her out of the room.
Akane wasn't able to get that good a look at where they were going from the angle she was laying, but it looked like Kodachi was taking he to the supply room that attached to the locker room. The lights were off, so she wasn't able to see and wouldn't have likely seen much even if she could turned her head. Then, she was dropped to the floor. At least there was a pad that cushioned her some.
In the dim light of the room she saw Kodachi kneed down next to her and move her body around. Akane started to panic as the gymnast spread her legs wide. She pulled something out from hammer-space and Akane felt her ankles being clamped into something that kept her legs spread apart. Then Kodachi bound her hands above her head with handcuffs. These were connected to a chain, but Akane was unable to see that it was connected to a fixture on the wall. Finally, a ball gag was stuffed into her mouth and fixed into place. Akane could feel some of whatever it was that hit her start to slowly wear off, but she still couldn't move much more than one of her fingers.
Kodachi grabbed her chin and turned Akane's head so she was looking into her eyes. "Now, vile temptress," she said with a voice like venom. "You will know your place. Ranma-sama is mine! This is what happens to those who dare stand in my way!"
Akane winced as the light came on in the room. When her eyes adjusted she looked around and if she could have she would have screamed through the gag. Surrounding her, standing close to the walls of the large room were former members of the Hentai Horde. All of them were naked, and there was no mistaking the fact that they were all aroused. All had that same manic look in their eyes that seemed unnatural.
Kodachi stood and headed for the door, before closing it behind her she said, "You brought this upon yourself, you know. If only you had stepped aside like a good girl this would not be necessary." Akane tried to struggle out of her bonds, scream, anything but she was still under the sway of whatever drug Kodachi had used.
"You have two hours, make the best of it," Kodachi said the assembly of boys. "Enjoy the present I brought for you. Ohohohohohohoho!" She closed the door and continued to laugh as she left. Back in the storage room Akane tried to scream as the boys advanced on her like zombies.
On the roof, Mara looked at the event going on in a magic sphere in her hands. She had to admire this Kodachi's imagination, when she had the right motivation and a good push in the right direction she could be quite evil. Mara did promise not to "directly" hurt Akane, and she was keeping her promise. She smiled as she heard the first sounds of a boy's moaning, his body moving rhythmically between the mallet bitch's legs. A small part of her tried to warn her that this was crossing a line she shouldn't be crossing, but she ignored it and continued to watch as the boys took turns with the bound girl. She dispelled the sphere and jumped into the air with a satisfied grin on her face. She left the school behind, but deep, deep within a tiny voice inside warned her this was wrong.
Mara did not realize it at the time, but this event would have far reaching consequences for herself and Akane. She was setting off a massive firestorm, and by the time it finally died down her current self would not be able to recognize herself. Kami-sama watched these same events with sad eyes. What the Tendo girl was going through was terrible, but it all a part of the grand scheme of things. These events had to play themselves out. As horrible as they were they were necessary.
"Its has begun,"
Alarms went off in Ranma's head when Akane didn't come out for gym. Nabiki told him the girls were told to use the old girl's locker room rather than the new one in the recently built annex. The old locker room had been hastily repaired. It was still damaged from the last big fight with Happosai, thus the reason why the new annex had been built. They went to the new building but saw and heard nothing. Ranma sensed a bit of magic and realized it could be only one thing. The two raced from the annex and ran through the school trying to find Akane. They were unable to detect Akane and the boys not far away in the next room behind several layers of magical shielding. As they searched they found all of the former HH-ers were missing. Panicked, Ranma and Nabiki ran back to the locker room in the new annex. It has taken then nearly two hours to search the whole school.
In the adjoining storage room that's where they found Akane, naked and crying in a corner. The leg spreader, gag and shackles had been removed and tossed to another corner. From the smell in the room both teens knew what had happened but their minds refused to believe it. The telltale taint of demonic magic filled the air, and Ranma's rage began to build. Mara would pay for this!
"AKANE!!!!" they both cried in shock and grief as they ran to her.
Akane had been raped.
To be continued …
Next time …
The fun was over. Ranma and Nabiki's relationship begins to grow as the two struggle to help Akane overcome her ordeal. The love of her family and a special someone would help her pick up the shattered pieces of her soul. Meanwhile, Mara faces the first consequences of her actions and her own ordeal begins. It is a time of upheaval and change in Nerima as the backlash of what happened in that storage room begins to tear Furinken High School apart. For Kuno Kodachi, it is the beginning of her own private Nifelhelm.
Next time in Chapter 6 - "Time May Heal All Wounds, but Only Love Can Heal the Soul"
NOTES: First I want to say I'm sorry for not getting this out sooner. I had hoped to get it out much much sooner than this but time didn't permit me to do it and I was out of ideas. Damn Writer's Block!!!! We now go into a darker part of the story. Why did I do something so extreme to Akane? It wasn't to bash her. Someone wanted me to let Mara beat the crap out of her, but I'm not into character bashing and I wanted Akane to grow as a character. So, why something as extreme as Rape? Ultimately its to act as a catalyst for the changes to come later in the story. Akane is going to change, in what way you'll have to just stay tuned and this time I promise NOT to keep you all waiting as long I did before. How dark will I take it? The next chapter will be pretty dark. Akane will recovering from her ordeal and Ranma and Nabiki will be there for her. There will also be someone else, someone close to Akane who will help her heal too. This story arch will span a few chapters, but it will eventually take Akane a lot longer than 3 or 4 chapters to finally fully recover.
What about Mara? I won't say right now but she won't get away with this unpunished. I have plans for this fic and I can't reveal all of cards now can I. Just know that its going to be an interesting ride, and likely one that'll make you cry while you're smiling at the same time. And, yes to all of you begging me this will NOT be a Ranma + Akane pairing but a Ranma + Nabiki pairing. I hope you liked it and please leave constructive reviews.