Mawwidge, that Bwessed Awwangement
Ryoko looked about the leaf-covered courtyard and
hovered. She sat there looking about wistfully before
landing, and letting gravity take hold again. Almost
immediately she dropped to her knees, clutching her
side. Ryo-Ohki jumped down from her shoulder and
looked up at her in concern.
Most of the minor injuries had faded to nothing
already, but Ryoko hadn't given the hole in her side a
chance to heal. She had even aggravated it to
life-threatening levels in the battle. She would
already be dead if Ryo-Ohki hadn't gotten her to a doc
after she passed out.
"Don't worry about it Ryo-Ohki," Ryoko growled.
"Ryoko!? Are you okay?" Ryoko whirled toward the
voice before she realized it was just her imagination
again. Then she slumped.
"No, he's dead," Ryoko said quietly. "And I
brought him to it."
"Miao, MIAO!" She stared down at the lecturing
cabbit, and then looked at her hand. There was blood
there, but not much. She stood up a little
"I'll be fine!" She snapped. "I don't need a
doctor, especially not on THIS world." She had no
qualms about letting herself die, not with Tenchi
gone, but she had no intention of becoming a lab
"Miao?" The cabbit sounded desperate.
"I have an idea for that," Ryoko said. "Can you
hack some records to make me the owner of the land,
shrine and house?"
"Miao," Ryo-Ohki was nervous about this, Ryoko
sounded suspiciously like she was tying up loose ends.
"You know as well as I do!" Ryoko snapped.
"I don't TRUST anybody else," Ryoko snapped. "How
do I know his family wouldn't just sell it to some
"No, I don't want them to know I'm alive," Ryoko
said. ~Might keep me from joining him.~ The cabbit
phased out of site, probably taking space ship form so
she could hack the Tokyo records. The cabbit returned
a couple of minutes later.
"Is it done?"
"I have to SIGN something?" Ryoko repeated.
"They're going to be closed for a week after
today?" Ryoko was off for the municipal offices.
Ryo-Ohki was moderately worried that she was
flying, but as long as she didn't teleport or
something more energy consuming she should be all
right. Plus the cabbit didn't think she'd risk
herself before securing the shrine.
"Well, there he is," Soun said, looking down to his
childish-looking wife. Hinako's child form had aged
some at least, she looked about fourteen or so now.
He pointed out the kneeling figure at Akane's
tombstone, laying down flowers.
Ranma stood and turned as he heard the approach of
another person. He relaxed when saw Hinako and Soun.
"Thought you were Kuno," Ranma said evenly.
"That delinquent is STILL attempting to desecrate
Akane's grave?" Hinako was furious.
"No, he's trying to goad me into making a mistake,"
"We haven't seen you since Nabiki left for school,"
Soun noted, changing the subject.
"Did you get Ryouga and Ukyou's wedding
invitation?" Ranma asked. He wondered briefly if the
fact that neither of the two had followed him today
had anything to do with Soun and Hinako's presence.
"You'll see me there."
"How's your education going, Saotome-san?" Hinako
asked as he passed them. They knew the answer
"I'm finished," he said, turning around. "I plan
to sign for the license to teach today."
"You'll need a dojo," Soun noted. Ranma's eyes
~He's NOT going to suggest that HERE!~ Ranma
"How would Akane feel about the dojo being empty?"
"She wouldn't like it," Ranma agreed reluctantly.
"I'll think about it, but this is the LAST place you
should have EVER tried something like this!!" Ranma
snapped before leaving.
"You made him angry," Hinako noted.
"I did," Soun agreed.
"That's a good sign."
~Why do I need ALL of this just to make sure that
no one ever tears down the Shrine?~ Ryoko thought to
herself. ~Ryo-ohki gave me an entire life history!~
It had taken Ryoko forever to get the paperwork
that Ryo-Ohki had faked for her. She didn't have much
time before these offices closed and then it would be
another week before she could come back to sign things
~You've planned this, haven't you?~ Ryoko thought.
~Damn walking carrot plague.~ Ryoko irritably sorted
through the pile of papers the last clerk had handed
her, trying to figure out which ones were pertinent to
Else where a similar scene was occuring.
~I did NOT want all this stuff,~ Ranma growled to
himself. ~All I wanted was my degree, transcripts and
dan certifications.~ Ranma tried to find the
documents in question in the sheaf of documents as he
Ryoko and Ranma both looked up and towards the
lines of people at nearly the same time. Though they
were interrupted in identifying the proper lines by
colliding with each other. Both of them were angry,
Ryoko suffering from a fresh loss, and Ranma on the
verge of venting four years of pent up emotions. They
Ryoko snapped her mouth shut as she hit the ground
amidst the shower of papers. She stood up quickly
trying to avoid seeming awkward. Next to her, Ranma
stood up much smoother, but no less angrier.
"Watch where you're going asshole!" Ryoko shouted
as she began randomly picking up papers.
"You ran into me!" Ranma retorted as he picked up
papers as well. He blinked when Ryoko's hand darted
for her side as she reached for a paper. "Are you
"Excuse me for caring!"
"You don't want to mess with me, punk," Ryoko
snarled as she picked up the last paper she could find
started sorting through them. "I'll take your head
"Punk!? Have you looked at your hair recently..."
he looked at one of the papers in his hand. "Ryoko?"
"Well...Ranma," They switched papers as they walked
forward, not paying attention. "Your not one to talk
with that girly little pig tail."
"What did you say?!?"
"You heard me fem-boy!" Tenchi had had a similar
hair style, but Ryoko was feeling less than forgiving
at the moment, and it seemed that she had struck a
"May I have your documents, Ma'am?" Ryoko shoved
her papers at the clerk, still glaring at Ranma.
"Hey, at least I'm not dressed like some slut from
a hentai manga."
"You're papers sir," Ranma slapped his pile down.
"What's the matter, can't keep up?" Ranma smirked,
this argument had an oddly nostalgic quality about it.
He wasn't about to admit to himself why though.
"Keep up with a brainless, effeminate, weakling
like you?" Ryoko snapped. "Why should I bother?"
"Excuse me, I need your signatures," the clerk said
nervously. Ranma and Ryoko both paused to get what
ever it was the little man wanted out of the way so
they could continue the fight.
"I ain't no weakling, Ryoko!"
"So, Ranma, you're just effeminate and brainless
"Here you go," they turned to glare at the clerk
pushing their documents towards them in one stack.
"What do you want!?" They both snapped. Ranma
picked up the stack of documents and was about to flip
through them when he noticed what the top document
"Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. Saotome," the clerk
said before shutting his window and making a mad dash
for the time clock.
"NANI!!?" Ranma and Ryoko looked up at the sign
above the counter. "MARRIAGE CERTIFACATES!?!"
"Hey," Ryoko smashed through the thin wooden cover.
"Come back here!! That little weasel is gone
"Great, just great," Ranma growled. "I thought I
was finished with fiancees and marriages."
"ACK!! They're closed!! I have to wait a week
"So do I!"
"This is all YOUR fault," Ryoko declared. She held
her hands in front of her to gather power.
~Deja vu,~ Ranma thought bitterly. "Now there's
something I haven't heard before." He stuffed the
documents in his shirt and put his own hands forward
ready to deflect a chi blast.
Ranma's preprations ceased as Ryoko cried at and
clutched her side. He looked at a play of what looked
like chi power sparking from her side. The
silver-haired woman crumpled to the ground, her tail
twitched once (tail?) and then she seemed to pass out.
"Ah shit," Ranma said as he noted the blood begin
to pool around her side. In a blink of motion he
swooped her up and was running out of the building.
"Kasumi and Tofu's ain't that far away from here."
"Just let me die." Ranma was about half-way to Dr.
Tofu's when he heard those horribly familiar words.
"Hey, I ain't letting no one else die, if I can
help it," Ranma snapped.
"No one else?" Ryoko repeated. ~Damn, I really
ripped it open this time, good I'll see Tenchi soon.~
"Who di.." She passed out again.
"Well that was interesting," Tofu said as he walked
back to the front of his house where Ranma was
"So how is she, Doc?" Ranma asked.
"Ranma," Kasumi said as she entered the room after
Tofu. "Were you aware that she is not human?"
"Well, the tail was a clue," Ranma said. "But I
just met her today, so I didn't have much chance."
"Just met her today?" Tofu repeated, arching an
eyebrow. He was surprised, elated really to see Ranma
behaving more like his old self. He was angry, yes,
but he wasn't cold any more.
"Yeah, so." Kasumi produced the marriage license.
"Oh, that. We were sort of fighting and didn't notice
what line we were in."
"I see," Kasumi said. "This does sound like
something that would happen to you."
"Yeah, so how is she?"
"She's going to live," Tofu told him. "It took me
a little while to find some equivilent shiatsu points
on her, though. So she lost a lot of blood, I'd
suggest you take her to a hospital, if I thought she'd
come out again."
"You mean the thing about her not being human?"
Ranma asked. "You don't believe that alien autopsy
crap do you?"
"Ranma, watch your language," Kasumi blinked. She
hadn't heard Ranma curse since his return from China.
"That is a concern though, yes," Tofu confirmed.
"What can you tell me about the wound?"
"She already had it," Ranma said. "She was
summoning a chi blast when it sort of short circuted
"Hmm, I wonder if I can apply a chi block to her,"
Tofu thought. "Keep her from further aggravating the
wound. That sleeping point I found on her should last
a little longer."
"Miao?" Ranma leaped onto a table, as the other two
turned toward the worried sound.
"Oh my, where did that come from," Kasumi asked.
Ranma looked to the little rabbit-like thing and
cautiously came down from the table.
"That's not a cat...is it?"
"It doesn't appear to be," Dr. Tofu said. "I
wonder if this perhaps connected to your mistaken
"He means, Ryoko," Ranma said nervously from the
other side of the table.
"Do you understand us?" Kasumi asked. The little
rabbit creature nodded. "Don't worry Ranma, this is
not a cat."
"You're sure?" Ranma asked. Moving nervously back
around the table.
"Yes," Kasumi said soothingly. "Tofu, dear,
perhaps you should tend to that chi block you were
discussing." Tofu glanced at his wife, noted her
expression, and nodded. As the doctor moved to return
to the still unconscious Ryoko she turned to face
"Well, that isn't a cat," Ranma agreed sitting down
still eyeing the cabbit, which was looking at him
~No one has been afraid of me like this before.~
"You seem better than you have been," Kasumi
started. "Its been a long while since anything beyond
a real cat has gotten a reaction from you."
"Mr Tendo was at Akane's grave today to ask me
about running the dojo," he said.
"I know," Kasumi said. "I suggested it."
"Well I suggested that they make you angry," Kasumi
said. "Everybody else came up with the details.
"Why the hell would you WANT me angry?" Ranma
"Because it is better than cold," Kasumi noted.
"And you are acting more like your normal self at
last. And please watch your language."
"Sorry Kasumi," Ranma said.
"Now why are you so interested in this woman,"
Ranma opened his mouth. "And don't tell me you
aren't, I know you to well for that."
"She told me to just let her die," Ranma muttered.
"And I rememebered saying something like that to
"Hmmm, I see," she turned to the cabbit. "Does she
have any friends to look after her?" The cabbit shook
its head after a moment. "Yes, but not in the area
"Miao," the cabbit nodded.
"This seems to be a fortunate meeting then," Kasumi
said. "You won't be able to anull this wedding for
another week, correct?"
"Again, Yeah, so?"
"Then you are honorbound to look after her at least
until you anull the wedding, then," Kasumi said.
"I guess so," Ranma shrugged, not sure he liked
where this was going.
"Then do so," Kasumi spoke softly, but it still
held the note of command. "It might do you both some
Ryoko sat up and looked around and then dropped
back to the bed.
"Still alive," she sighed, before sitting up again.
~I can't leave yet anyway.~
"Yep, Tofu patched you up." Ryoko turned toward
the voice and growled.
"Oh...YOU," she said, disgusted. "What are you
"Somebody has to make sure you stay alive," Ranma
said. "Apparently that falls to me." He didn't
mention that Tofu and Kasumi had virtually commanded
him to watch her while they "talked" to the
rabbit-thing. ~How do you talk to a rabbit?~ Of
course he had seen stranger things before.
"I'm not your problem," Ryoko snapped. She stood
up and leaned forward. Ryoko's eyes goggled as she
failed to float off the ground. She teetered for a
moment in off balance confusion before falling
forward, and being caught by Ranma. ~Damn he's fast.~
"Oh yeah, the Doc blocked your chi," Ranma said as
he set Ryoko back on her feet.
"Blocked my what?" Ryoko took a moment to try to
summon a force shield, then a short teleport, and
finally her energy sword. Nothing happened. "You
JERK, what did you do that for?" Ryoko lashed out at
Ranma and was surprised when he caught the fist.
~Damn, she's strong,~ Ranma noted to himself.
~Maybe Doc should have given her the strength sapping
"How'd you do that?" Ryoko growled, pulling back
and looking at the young man. He just shrugged.
Ryoko narrowed her eyes and snapped up a foot, which
Ranma blocked. True to Ranma's history with women,
the distraction proved enough for Ryoko send him
flying against the wall.
Ranma shrugged in frustration as the silver-haired
woman turned and left the room. Ryoko cursed as she
ran into the door, forgetting she had to open it. He
shook his head clear before standing up and following.
"What kind of sense does this make," Ranma
"Oh, you're awake," Kasumi said as Ryoko walked
into the front room. Ryoko froze at the sound of the
voice. There was a familiar hint of unconditional
kindness in the voice.
"Sas.." then she sighed, turning around. "No, too
old." She turned to face the serenly smiling visage
of a young woman maybe twenty-three years old.
"I'm sorry, did I remind you of....someone?"
"Are you the doctor?" Ryoko ignored the question.
"Oh my, no," Kasumi said surprised. "Not yet at
any rate. That would be my husband."
"You woke up faster than I thought," another voice
said behind her. Another man walked around into her
view, paying close attention to her wound, bandaged
again, and how she was holding herself.
~Definitely a doctor,~ she thought. Then she
caught sight of Ryo-Ohki sitting on a chair, watching
her cautiously. She fixxed the cabbit with a glare
that left Ryo-Ohki little doubt that she suspected her
of causing today's delay. "How long until I get my
"Well I can reverse it, but I don't know when or if
they'll come back naturally," Tofu answered. "Your
physiology is a little different."
"Hey, maybe you should give her the
strength-sapping moxibustion too," Ranma suggested as
he joined them. "She's strong, maybe as strong as
"If you try it, I'll kill you," Ryoko promised.
"So I guess the only way I'm getting my powers back is
when you decide to give them to me. Fine, I won't
need them anyway. Ryo-Ohki, let's go home."
"Miao, miao." Ryoko blinked.
"NANI!?" Ryoko shouted angrily. She looked back
and saw Ranma's head poking into the room from deeper
in the building. She didn't care much why he had
suddenly retreated into the hallway, but turned back
to Ryo-Ohki. "Wait for him?"
"Forgot about that thing," Ranma muttered, inching
back into the room, he looked up at the phrase "Wait
"Oh yes," Kasumi said. "We thought maybe Ranma
should accompany you home." Ranma narrowed his eyes,
there had to be more to this.
"I can take care of myself," Ryoko argued.
"I'm sure you can," Tofu agreed. "But if the
injury were to somehow open again having him on hand
would be a good idea." Which Ryoko correctly took to
mean they wanted to make she didn't do anything that
would get her killed.
"What haven't you said yet?"
"Well, we gather from this wonderful little
creature," Kasumi indicated a preening Ryo-Ohki.
"That Ryoko lives outside of town, she shouldn't be on
her own with a wound like that."
"Oh HELL no!" Ranma shouted.
"There's no way I'm showing him where I live."
"Miao," Ryoko glared at the cheerful cabbit. Of
course Ryo-Ohki could lead him there.
"Why should I go live with her for a week?"
"It'll make it easier to get the marriage anulled
for one thing," Tofu said. "Plus I imagine you could
use some time to think things over."
~Great, we get to babysit each other,~ Ranma
sighed. "We don't have a choice here, do we?"
"I do NOT need to be babysat!" Ryoko shouted.
"Miao?" Ryoko ignored the cabbit.
"It's only a week," Kasumi said sweetly.
"I'll need to tell Ukyou and Ryouga," Ranma said
irritably. "I think he still has my camping gear
anyway." After a futile argument with Ryo-Ohki, Ryoko
gave up with a frustrated growl.
"A week with you, this'll be just great," Ryoko
"Think it worked?" Ryouga asked as he finished up
the tables. He had washed each table at least three
times, mostly because he kept coming back to one table
"I hope so," Ukyou said. "Babysitting him is
getting...frustrating. He cares less now than when he
finally woke up."
"He isn't trying to kill himself," Ryouga noted.
"He doesn't really need to be watched."
"Yeah, he just doesn't care if he lives," Ukyou
said, quietly. Ryouga turned to face her, well tried
to, he found her on the third try.
"Ucchan, you tried," Ukyou turned an exasperated
glare at him. "It didn't work."
"Don't get jealous P-chan," Ukyou said, half
teasing. "I just wish he'd..."
"I can walk on my own!" Ryouga and Ukyou looked in
the direction of the shout for a moment and then
"That's why you trip ever thirty feet," somebody
"Ranma?" Ryouga and Ukyou blinked.
"I'm used to walking THROUGH obstacles, not around
"Owww! What did you do that for?" Ryouga and Ukyou
had their attention riveted on the front of Ucchan's
when a silver-haired woman with what looked like a
rabbit on her shoulder walked in looking upset. She
walked rather stiffly and irritably into the
"This is Ucchan's right?"
"Uh...we're closed," Ryouga said, confused.
"Its alright, Ryouga, she's with me," they looked
to Ranma coming in rubbing his head.
"Uh, Ranma," Ukyou started. "Who's this."
"A pain in the neck," he mumbled. "Its a long
story, just leave it at I'm supposed to make sure she
takes it easy for the next week or so." Ryoko mumbled
something as she turned toward a booth.
"Sit at the counter," Ukyou suggested. "I can keep
us all fed that way."
"Thanks Ukyou," Ranma said as he sat down on a
"Miao?" Ryoko sighed as she sat down at the
counter, stiffly. This patch wasn't quite as complete
as when she had unexpectedly woken up after the
battle. Ryoko had expected to die then, but as soon
as she'd passed out Ryo-Ohki was off to a doctor
they'd used before.
"Do you have any carrots?"
"Sure, how many do you need?"
"As many as you can get," Ryoko said simply. Ukyou
"So what's the long story?" Ukyou asked.
"Hey, what's this?" Ryouga asked leaning down to
pick up a crumpled piece of paper he had seen fall out
of Ranma's shirt. "YOU GOT MARRIED?!!!" Ranma's head
dropped to the counter while Ryoko growled.
"IT DOESN'T COUNT!" Ryoko yelled.
"Just burn the damn thing," Ranma whined, head
still on the counter.
"I'm beginning to get the picture," Ukyou said.
"You're making this too easy, Ryoko," Nagi said as
she walked out of the spaceport.
"Xian Pu," the named Amazon looked up from her
kata. "There has been some news."
"News, great grandmother?"
"Yes, apparently Ranma was not as hopeless as we
had thought," she said. "I've heard that he's been
mostly active the past three years at, least."
"But I'm already married," Xian Pu reminded her.
"Even if he is better, its too late now."
"True, but didn't he also beat your sister's in
battle as well," Kuh Lon asked. "And Ran Ran has not
found a husband since then."
"That's true," Xian Pu agreed. "Where did you
learn of this, Great-grandmother? The spatula-girl's
invitation said nothing of this."
"The Kumon boy brought the information," Kuh Lon
said. "I suspect he's just trying to make trouble for
Ranma without actually having to fight him. Though
there is little concern for his motives."
"It doesn't matter, I guess," Xian Pu shrugged.
"Why tell me and not talk to Ran-Ran?"
"I want you to go with her to Japan," Kuh Lon said.
"You and Mousse could visit old friends and you can
get some practice with certain duties of a matriarch."
"Like matchmaking?" Xian Pu asked.
"Among other things," Kuh Lon agreed. "I'd suggest
going on the excuse of the Kuonji girl's marriage to
Ryouga. And re-open the Nekohanten as well, perhaps
even for a more permanent stay."
"Perhaps it is time for our people to move out into
the world," Kuh Lon said. "And Nerima would be a good
place to start. Keep a tight rein on Ran Ran, the
primary goal is getting a foothold in the world,
pushing Ranma could endanger that." Xian Pu thought
of the battle with Saffron and nodded.
Back to Ryoko Saotome