Disclaimer: I do not own Ranma characters. (the edited version)
'It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife ( Jane Austen in Pride & Prejudice )'
This saying was so well-fixed in the minds of the small town, Nerima, that every wealthy young man that stepped in this town would be considered as the husband-to-be of some random single lady in town. However, no families were more anxious to marry their daughter off than the patriach of the Tendo family, Soun Tendo. As a widower and father of not one but three daughters and no heir, his only solance was to find suitable rich husband for his three deserving daughters before he died.
"Kasumi! Nabiki! Akane! Please abandon what you are doing currently and come immediately to my study. I have excellent news to share with you."
Kasumi, the eldest daughter, wiped her hands on the apron and glanced at the kitchen table. The servants had a day off, giving her a rare opportunity to prepare meals for her loving family. Dinner is ready to be served. With her serene smile, she approached the study, wondering which young man her father had in mind.
Nabiki's fingers danced with the beads on the abacus as she calculated the family's monthly expenditure. With a brillant mind inherited from some long lost ancestor, she was able to keep her family well fed and provided comfort from her father's modest income of two thousand pounds a year. This month's savings, with the addition of the profits she earned from her little schemes, was more than enough to meet their demands sufficiently. Pleased with the financial well being of the family, she gave a satisfied smile and made her way to the study.
Akane, the youngest member of the family, gave a tired sigh. Pieces of concrete were strewn all over the traning room. Ever since, she was a child, she tried to learn martial arts from her father by watching him training and practised the moves later. She had to bribe Nabiki to keep her training a secret from her father just because the societyviewed it as unfeminine.Currently, shewas able to master the intermediate techniques and moves but it did not satisfy her passion for martial arts. It was at this moment that she wished she was a boy.Sighing in defeatat her fate,Akane straightened her dress and brushed off the dust before joining her sisters and father in the study.
Soun received them with much excitement and motioned them to take their place quickly. Clearing his throat, he begun.
"During the council meeting this morning, I have learnt that the Red Orchids Mansion was being taken by a bright, young doctor of promising future and large fortune. He would settled down there by the end of this week."
He paused, hoping that his daughters would sharehis excitment.
"As the town council member, I would certainly pay a visit to him and hope he returns it soon. Of course it would be a great pleasure if he chose one of you to be his bride, A man with four to five thousand a yearwould be a good catch for a woman from a middle income family like us. There are also a dozen girls taking an interest in him but I'm sure my beautiful daughters would far surpassed them and leave a lasting impression in his mind. Nevertheless, you should prepared for his arrival, especially you dear Akane. Don't take meas a fool. I knew you are training secretly. Although I wouldn't stop you from it, I must remind you once again that men prefer women of grace and charmrather than rockmuscles."
The girls listened the long speech with varying interest. Kasumi gave her father her ever ready smile and returned to the kitchen to add the finishing touch on her dishes once he had finished. Nabiki was calculating mentally how the young man's fortune would be spent and frankly speaking, she was not really impressed. Akane listened with disinterest. She was not very fond of men due to her past experience with them. She was teased mercilessly by them when they found out about her martial arts training. They played a game in which that if a boy defeats her, she would be engaged to him. Her beautiful features and womanly figure worsen the situation and she constantly found herself engaged in twenty fights or more a day. Fortunately, her training paid off and she managed to win every fight that crossed her path. Now, only one of two brave young men would occasionally challenge her as most of the boys could not afford to loose one or two teeth.
A few days after Soun's visit, he was rewardedwhen the doctor returned it and welcomed him graciously to their house. The doctor, Tofu Ono, had heard much of the Tendo girls' beauty and had entertained the thought of being introduced to them but he only get to meet their father. The girls, however, were lucky to catch a glimpse of his physical appearance but not his face. His well fitting clothes revealed a well built body and the girls marveled at his strength when he swung himself off his horse before. An invitation to dine with them was given to and refused politely by Dr Tofu as he had other engagements. However, a positive answer was given to the delighted Soun about the incoming welcome ball planned for him to be introduced to the principal people in Nerima. Dr Tofu revealed that he was also planning to bring with him a party of people from north of England and would be planning to meet them there. All this generated much interest among the Nerima inhabitants as it was months since they saw a new face in town.
On the day of the ball, the guests assembled anxiously at the hall to welcome the newcomer and his fellow companions. When Dr Tofu arrived, he brought with him a lady and two gentlemen, much to the relief of the girls as there was speculation that he had with him twelve ladies and five gentlemen in his group.
The woman glided smoothly and proudly around the room and nodded slightly when introductions were being made. The expensive gown she wore brought out the beauty in her and revealed her slim but womanly figure. She was introduced as Ukyo Kunoji, niece of Dr Tofu Ono.
Dr Tofu was a bespectacled man in his late twenties but good looking and gentlemanlike; he had a pleasant countenance and easy unaffected manners. Even Akane was so taken in by his good looks and pleasing manners that she could not help but blushed slightly when he asked her for a dance.
One of the young men looked overwhelmed by the sheer number of ladies in the room as there were two ladies to one man in the room. His shy demeanor, cute fangs and his fortune ofsix thousand pounds a year caused some single ladies to look at him with interest. He was about to became the husband property of the ladies in the room until he was introduced as Lord Ryouga Hibki and was engaged to Dr Tofu sister, Akari.
However, the centre of attraction was the other gentleman. His well muscular but lean body, handsome and noble features, and a report, which made its wayinto thegeneral circulation within five minutes after his entrance, of his having ten thousand pounds a month, made him the darling among the audience for at least halfthe night. The pigtailed gentleman was known as Lord Ranma Saotome.
Author Notes: This is my second fic. I started to write this after reading the book Pride and Prejudice although the plot may be twisted a bit to suit the characters and some of them may be OOC. I will still try to stick to the original story although right now, I have a bit of difficulty assigning roles to certain characters in the book. Reviews are welcome.