What Must Be
Disclaimer: I don't own this series or any other series. I am just floating an idea. I am making no money, nor plan to, off this venture. If you think of suing me over this, then grow up.
I would like to first personally thank all of those reviewing my stories. I enjoy reading your comments, and try to correct the grammatical errors I miss with my final read-through as well as my spell checkers. The suggestions you all make will help make this story better for everyone to enjoy, as well as allow my to fix some plot holes I may unintentionally leave. If you find any, let me know, and I will correct them and repost the chapters.
Please feel free to review, and make comments. If you find a spelling or wordage mistake, feel free to let me know. Thank you.
Also, please check out my other stories. I try to keep a constant level of dedication to all of them.
Special thanks to Howard Russell for the main conflict idea and the pre-reading.
Words done in bold like this are the spoken words of the Hina sword.
Words like this are for the sword's inner monologue.
Kanako sat with her brother and his new...wife. That term was still tearing apart the heart of the Goth girl. It hurt her to no end to see her brother stuck with someone who wasn't her.
It wasn't right, as far as she was concerned.
But there was nothing she could do now. She had seen how the two were practicing for this match, her brother showing moves she had never seen before. Even if they did win, and the chance was given to annul the marriage; would they take it?
Sighing, she drank more of the tea. These thoughts were depressing her, and the last thing her onii-chan needed was more on his mind. "So, are you two ready?"
The two simply stared into their cups. Keitaro was the first to speak. "If not for the Hina Sword, I fear we would fall just as easily today as we did then."
Motoko nodded. "True. But we shall defeat her today. Of that, I have no doubt." She turned to face her husband, placing her hand on his shoulder. "And neither should you."
Kanako bit down the urge to attack Motoko for touching her brother, but decided that injuring her before the match would less likely free him.
No, she would wait, bide her time, and strike when the marriage was annulled. She would react so quickly, even Naru would be left out once again.
"You two will defeat her, and win your freedom of choice once again. I have faith in the both of you, Onii-chan, so should you."
And soon, if all went right, she would soon have him as well.
Sakura, Ami, and Yuka had gathered at what would be the battlefield for the upcoming fight. They had gone home quickly to get their outfits, while Yuka had returned with a duffel bag.
"So, what is the plan?" asked Sakura.
Yuka smiled. "After the fight, we wait for the pervert to be alone. We knock him out, and take him to the Love Hotel about six blocks from here. We drug him a little, and make it look like he had abducted us and was abusing us before he passed out. When Sempai arrives, she will see it, and she will return to normal."
The two stared at her as if a second head had formed on her shoulder.
Ami decided to voice her opinion. "Um, isn't that...illegal?"
Seeing that Ami wasn't going to continue, she did. "It is up to us to save Sempai from the perverted male that has bewitched her so."
The two lowered their head, groaning. It was obvious Yuka had been watching Ranma ½ again. They never liked it when she started acting like the Kuno character.
Sighing, the listened as Yuka continued to rattle on about having to tear some of their clothes, look scared when they rented the room, and faking rope burns to appear to have been tied down by their "assailant".
They knew it was going to be a long day.
Grandma Hina and Tsuruko were sitting alone in the train carriage, waiting to arrive at Hinata Springs.
Well, Hina was.
Tsuruko was passed out from trying to recover from her hangover, and getting some sleep to burn out some more of the alcohol.
Hina simply stared out the window. If all went as prophesized, then her grandson would be forced to leave their world for a long time, a few weeks at least, a year at most.
She had no idea how much time would pass for him where they were headed.
But she knew they were needed. People like him could make all the difference in the end.
She would have to explain it to them. It was doubtful at this moment if even Tsuruko would be able to defeat them today, even if she wasn't currently nursing the hangover that time forgot.
"Well, he can always hook up with more women when he returns. After all, he will be gone for untold time. And if Motoko is found sufficient to escort him to there..."
Her smile grew, imagining all the little great grandchildren she would soon have, without waiting those awful years.
She did feel somewhat upset though. If the Aoyama were supposed to be as fertile as bunnies, then why was Tsuruko childless still?
Oh well, her grandson could fix that as well.
Smiling again, Hina began to start drinking from the hidden liter of Everclear she brought with her. Good times...
"It will begin soon, won't it?"
Su sat on Keitaro's lap on the back porch, watching the scenery. She wasn't certain what was about to happen, but she knew it was not going to end well for her favorite ronin and her adopted protector. Every fiber of her being said something big was coming.
And she knew she had no power to fight it with.
She knew all of these things, and their definition had only grown while she was here; when he was here.
It was sad in a way. She had finally found love, found a man whom she could be herself, who wouldn't expect her to grow up or change.
She had at first lost him to Naru.
Then she had lost him to Motoko.
It wasn't fair that she had never had a chance. True, it was no fairer than Shinobu losing her chance with him, merely because of age.
"I guess. Can't really say how things will turn out."
He was too innocent at times, a child-like innocence she strove to keep in herself.
Maybe I can clone him? That would make everyone happy. Everyone gets their own clone of Keitaro! They each get the ronin they love!
Childish dreams. He was Motoko's now, even if they hadn't gone all the way. His heart was attached to hers, more so than anyone else's. He had saved her from herself...twice. He had faced her sister...twice.
For better or worse, he would ride this out with Motoko.
"I know you'll win, Keitaro!"
She would support him, no matter what. If she couldn't be that someone for him; that love that never dies, then she would work for his happiness.
After all, even love exists between friends.
"I hope so, Su. I have faith in our abilities."
She leaned back into him, enjoying the feeling of protectiveness he seemed to give off.
So much like Big Brother.
But the worry only dimmer, never disappeared.
And she knew that after the battle, it would only grow again.
So, she took stock in these last few moments with him, knowing that in the future, they would be fewer and farther in between.
I love you, Keitaro.
Please, be happy with Motoko.
Naru and Motoko sat alone, watching television.
But their conversation wasn't relating to what was happening on the latest episode of the soap opera now showing.
"So what will you do if you win?"
"I don't know. We never set the terms. We'll do that when she arrives, I guess."
"Does that mean you might ask for the annulment?"
"I'm not certain."
"Do...do you love him, Motoko?"
"I...I...I can't say for certain. I know I like him."
"You should figure that out before the duel. If you love him, stay married. If you like him, get the annulment."
"If you only like him, you can't build a marriage on that. If you love him, take the marriage as far as the love will let you."
"I won't lie, Motoko. I know how I feel; at least, I believe I do. You learn a lot about stuff like that when you lose it, simply because you didn't take the time to find out. Would you rather hurt him now, because you know only that you like him? Or would you rather hurt him later, when you tell him you cannot love him?"
"I...I see your point, Naru."
The two returned to silence for a few moments.
"Do you love him, Naru?"
"I...I think I do. But he is married now, and I will not ruin that like a selfish girl. I...I don't want to be that type of person."
"The others...they love him as well."
"True, he did find a way into all our hearts, and never once took advantage, despite what we did."
"Naru, I don't know if I can love him like he deserves."
"Motoko, only he can tell you if the love you offer is enough."
"Good luck...on everything."
"Thanks. Are you okay with this?"
"He stayed with me when I needed him to. I can't ask for him to stay forever. I won't come between you two, despite the ranting of my heart."
"Good. It would be ill-advised for those involved if my husband was...not faithful."
Sometimes, many things can be solved with a simple talk.
It doesn't mean it will always make both sides happier, or solve all their problems.
The spirit of a doll sat in silence between the realm of dreams and the realm of reality.
Oddly enough, this was called Hinatasou in both realms.
She looked at the man she loved, looking out upon the field he would soon be dueling Tsuruko in, holding a sword that had once been demonic, but was now what it had been meant to be.
She was happy for him. He was finally becoming a better person, standing up for what he believed in, and fighting with more than clumsy movements, a seemingly endless immortality, and a kind heart.
He was a warrior now. Not blooded, true, but a warrior, nonetheless.
But of the group now assembled at this weigh station of hope, only two knew the truth of why this was all happening.
There was a purpose for having Keitaro take over the dorm.
There was a purpose to leaving the Hina Sword in the open for him to find.
There was a purpose to Tsuruko arriving when she did.
And now, there was a purpose to this last encounter.
Moe hated to be like this. Manipulating things like this went against who she was. It felt wrong to be doing this to him, making him become what he was meant to be by force, rather than choice.
But what was done was done. Nothing could change it now.
And despite how it had come about, he was needed as he was now.
Soon, the secrets would be out.
And maybe...she would find peace.
The time had come.
The two warriors stood on the field of battle, awaiting their opponent, swords in their sheaths.
The girls and magical flying pets of Hinatasou were waiting to the side, looking forward to this match, their reasons mixed.
"Are you ready, Husband?"
"I am. Are you ready, Wife?"
"Hey!" shouted Kitsune. "Make certain you figure out what you win or lose first!"
The two warriors sweat-dropped. "Um, I guess we kinda forgot that."
Motoko bowed her head. "We spent so much time preparing, we never figured out what we would get."
The Motoko Aoyama fan club was hidden a bit further back. "Um, Yuka, what happens if Sensei loses?"
Yuka held up a box. "We ship him to Antarctica."
Ami shook her head. She really needed new friends.
Finally, two figures could be seen, the sun behind them, making their way to the field.
The battle was soon to begin.