I could feel the drumming pain behind my head...

Again, a rapid rhythm falling onto the roofs. A slow yet fast beat of a singing lullaby, a secret song that puts us all into ease. As I remember it, I loved to listen to the fallen tears of rain. Ironically, I hated being in it. It was because it had consequences, my every choice of where to go and what to do has consequences yet I dared not to think too much of it. Was it the fear dwelling deep within me of sudden change? I knew that I wasn't the thinking type on the outside but in this mind, thoughts float and ideas slowly appear.

Because on the outside, I am Ranma Saotome: a martial artist wanting to become the best. In the mind of a martial artist, are questions, answers, thoughts, regrets, opinions and memories. Nothing more.

Darkness was balancing an illusion in my eyes. It was either growing slightly thinner or slightly darker. I was fighting--no struggling to regain the modern sights I would see when I awoke from a long slumber. At the same time, I didn't know what was going on. A puzzle or simply a battle with my mind tormenting me with trickery such as these was getting quite annoying.

"He seems to be getting better."

"I'm so sorry Haruka, I... I just didn't know he was going to take to impact so easily."

"Actually, it was my fault. During our private conversation, I told him do not hit or seriously defend himself from the girls, it would just cause a sparking challenge between Naru, Motoko and Su. He agreed and I guess the outcome of my comment came down to this. He's a stubborn one, always wanting to become the best but once it comes down to girls, I guess he just takes them too lightly."

"I'm sorry Haruka..."

"Don't need to beat yourself up, Motoko. He's a strong warrior just like you; he'll be able to get through it."

"Haruka, do you think Sempai would wake up soon? I want to make him his favorite dish."

"Ha ha, I'm pretty sure, Shinobu. He just needs to rest for another hour or probably earlier."

"Can I still shoot missiles when he wakes up?"

"Umm, you might want to save that for later."

"I wonder if he's good at Kung Fu then I'll give him some of my sake so he can perform the Drunken Master style!"

"Kitsune! Do you seriously think that movie is real?"

"Aww, c'mon Naru ya know I was kidding."

Finally, my eyes opened slightly. The voices I heard were all familiar. I could see blurs at first, many different colors--but like a TV screen, everything became clear in the right places. A groan slipped out of my lips and I curiously looked around, lost in the unfamiliar area. "Where--where am I?"

(Back to normal point of view)

Everyone stood still for a moment since they had laid eyes on the recovered teen. At first there faces were at shock but when they finally realized the sudden situation, all of them screamed for joy and huddle around Ranma.

"You're back!" screamed Shinobu as she wrapped her arms around Ranma's neck.

"Yay! We can play again!" declared Su as she jumped on top of his legs.

"Welcome to Japan my friend!" said Kitsune with a playful smirk.

"Ranma... nice to see you alive and well," softly muttered Narusegawa with a hidden blush.

"I knew you would make it," smiled Haruka.

"Errr... your not going to hit me again are you, my younger cousin?" Keitaro rubbed the back of his head with a nervous facial expression.

Laughs, screams and tears of joy surrounded the 'just awoken sleeping beauty.' Not that Ranma didn't enjoy it—he did, for the welcome party. Although something else was amiss. It was that one missing person hidden deeply with the shadows masking her face. She stood there, a still statue, silently emotionless yet mysteriously suspicious.

"Motoko," spoke Ranma as he stared at her with curious cat eyes again. Although he said her name, it was deeply lost and unheard of the roaring crowd hovering around him. Unnoticed by the others except Ranma, Motoko sighed with crossed arms and left the area, leaving him speechless, at least for another three seconds.

"How's your head, nephew?" Ranma turned to his aunt and winced slightly to answer her question. She laughed it off. "Still hurts, eh? Well, it will get better soon. That must've been one heck of a blow."

"That's only because I didn't take it too damn seriously; like I do with that uncute-tomboy. I never knew she was that strong. This happened twice, it ain't like me." He muttered with a hint of shame showing in his facial expression.

"Always trying to be the best," Haruka spoke with a soft mysterious smile and crossed arms. Her head shook as she walked away, still smiling from her previous remark. "Get well soon!" She shouted without turning her back.

"Whatever!" He scoffed and blew it off as he turned his back away as well with a hung head.' When I try to be the best, I go over-board. He thought, strangely feeling a sudden sting to his emotions. Hinatasou is definitely an area where you can change.

"The night is still young! Let's celebrate!" roared Mitsune holding a rather large bottle of sake. Everyone agreed by matching her volume, all shouting, "YEAH!"

Predictably, Ranma ignored the outrageous party and went upstairs to see his attacker. Of course she nearly placed him in a coma, but at least she realized her mistake…right? Ranma rattled his head by clenching onto a patch of hair, frustrated of what to say. He sighed roughly and slammed the wooden wall with his foot.

"Damn! Why do all girls have to be so complicated?" He pounded the wall and leaned forward with his forehead touching it. "Why do I even have to become one?" He groaned and took a deep breath. There's no time to get upset of the past. He thought while taking each step of the stairs that led to the roof-top.

There she was, standing still with crossed arms looking up at the night sky. He could not see her face but the posture and uncomfortable silence said it all. He didn't planned on talking to her, but as he felt a sudden draft caressing his thin strands of bangs and some skin left unclothed, he could tell something was going to start.

I came all this way to talk to her... but she needs some time alone. Damn... Therefore, he took a moment to admire the stars and the brave warrior with one last look for the night.

Motoko could see Ranma's blood-red clothing from the corner of her eye and sighed, not turning her back to him. She could see him turning to leave but reacted quick enough to gather his attention. "Did you came here to stalk me or did you just want to chat, Saotome?"

Ranma stopped in his tracks and felt the chill of her words creeping up to his spine. That was REALLY unexpected. He thought while slowly turning his back to hers again. "Ummm, yeah, I wanted to talk to you about something, got a minute?"

"It seems this conversation will take more than a minute, Saotome." Motoko turned to him with a rather emotionless expression. "Even though I hate males like you, I must admit that what I had done was not appropriate for a swordswoman such as myself. My honor shows nothing but reckless actions because of the emotions I could not control. All I can do is apologize for my cruelty, for I previously thought you were much powerful then Urashima." She took a deep breath, "but it seems that my instincts proven me wrong once again."

Ranma felt no wind moving through his hair or his face. He didn't even felt cold, he felt much warmer than that. It wasn't the emotion called 'love' it was called 'anger.'

"Are you calling me weak, Kendo-Girl?" growled Ranma with his hand transforming to a bloody fist. "The only reason why I've been blown away from your attacks twice was because I was taking you VERY lightly! Besides, I don't fight girls, no matter how masculine they are... or sexless."

"Excuse me?" blurted out Motoko while whipping around with her Shinai ready to be unsheathed. "You dare insult me again!"

"Like you do to me?" Ranma stuck out a tongue with both of his hand spreading out his cheeks. "Now that sounds very hypocritical!"

Motoko attacked Ranma, as he typically dodged it with ease. Their little dance went on for hours and obviously both of them were tired. Although, they went on, unnoticed by some of the party members downstairs singing Karaoke.

"You acrobatic monkey!" panted Motoko as she struck rather weakly with her Shinai.

"You sexless butter-knife killer!" panted Ranma as he lazily dodged the last attack.

"Cowardly... bastard... strike back..." The raven-haired Goddess slowly knelt down and tried to catch her breath so she could sound normal again.

"No...way... I don't... fight... samurai wannabe's like you... well actually I do... but not sexless girls... okay well I do… you get the idea!" Ranma knelt down faster then Motoko and nearly collapsed on his forehead, not as hard as the last time though.

Both of the fighters collapsed together at the same time, landing besides each other.

Of course, if someone was there to witness this after they collapsed; here are one of the reasons why this looks wrong. One, their clothes are soaked with sweat so deep, it goes through there clothes, it even went through Motoko's bindings. Two, both of them have red faces. Three, their panting like dogs. And four, they are next to each other, tight closed eyes while trying to catch there breath.

"Wow. Someone had fun," snicked Kitsune looking rather drunk as the other party members were behind her.

"Whoa! That looks fun! Can Ranma do me next?" drooled the gullible Su.

"No Su! And no sempai... you only known Motoko for hours!" cried Shinobu close to tears, "Auu..."

Naru, our dear lost twin of Akane Tendo, predictable as always, stood there speechless with a vein throbbing near her temple. "You... you... unbelievable scum bag! PERVERT!" She charged at Ranma and jab a clean, swift and hard uppercut to his chin.

"What... did I do...?" His words echoed through the night as he spun around crazy high up the stars.

"Humph! Honestly!" Naru whipped around and went straight downstairs for a nice bathe in the hot springs.

(The Next Day...)

After the incident last night, Ranma had lost trust in Naru, well some of it, except for the others since Motoko to explained to them all. Although, after his nice flight to another girl's public hot springs and a long flight back home, he was exhausted. So exhausted that he would have to hibernate for the winter. Well, let's not go that far.

"Wake up sleepy head!" shouted cheery Su giving him the friendly welcome kick to his head.

"Off!" He rolled out of his sleeping bag and scowled quite angrily at his attacker, "WHAT THE HELL IS YOUR PROBLEM?"

She ignored his outrage and sat there innocently with a smile. That was when Naru walked in with a blunt frown and thin slit eyes that resembles no trust because of his presence ruining her atmosphere. "If you're going to stay here, you have to work here. You're not staying at the Hinatasou for free, you know. You have to pay, so that includes cable, food, and bathing. Don't you dare try and talk your way out of this with Haruka's permission, because she told me to give you a wake up call. So if you can't pay for it, then you have to work for it."

"Can you at least give me some rest? Do you have any idea what time it is?" grumbled Ranma as Naru nonchalantly passed him the pail and bucket.

"Nope, either you work or you leave." She left with no further words, again, leaving him dumbfounded.

"Damn violent, bossy son of a------!" he shouted, still clenching on to the pail and bucket.

And so, his words echoed throughout the entire dorm...

"I HEARD THAT!" A bar of soap was thrown at his head.

(Hours later...)

Ranma wiped off the sweat on his forehead and sat down on the highest stone-stairs of Hinatasou. He could see the view from here and smell the familiar scent of the cherry blossoms. He breathed in the fresh morning air and finally let out a calm smile, enough to pull his cheeks slightly.

"So this is where another crazy life-story of mines begins." He spoke clearly, admiring the fallen petals covered in light shades of pink. His smile still stayed there—and this time, it was the feeling of exciment. "At least I'm away from all of those annoying idiots back home, I need a vacation."

Rays of the sun slowly bathed him greatly, showing that there is rare-peace in this world of his. But like what Buddha or Karma's rule—what goes up must come down.

"Oh my, the cherry blossoms has gotten prettier!"

Ranma turned to the one whom spoke those words and stood still. 'She's—she's beautiful!' He thought with astonishment with his heart racing. Her long braided chocolate hair let loose in the playful wind. A simple green dress forming her body curves—and her—ahem. Her soft laughter echoing through Ranma's ears. The smooth silky white skin that was left unclothed such as her hands and face. The innocent radiant glow began to increase her short display as her eyes finally opened up towards Ranma.

"Oh my… am I in the wrong area of the Hinatasou?"

A deep blush crossed Ranma's face. His blue eyes widen as large as Kuno's fantasies with Akane and the Pig-Tail girl. "Err—yeah—no—I mean… uh… you're in the right area!" He mentally slapped himself for sounding so stupid in the first place.

"Oh! Is that so? Then that must mean you're a new-comer!" Her smile melted Ranma again as she clapped two hands together.

"Actually… I'm Keitaro's Urashima cousin, Ranma Saotome…" He spoke in a slow careful pace so his words did not get humiliatingly slurred like a drunk.

"Ranma…" She was lost in thought for quite a while but Ranma didn't mind the awkward silence. His eyes were on her, for some reason, he just blushed because of her normal appearance.


"Huh? Who, what, where?" Jumped Ranma as the peace was broken by a disturbing noise.

"Oh! Hello Mr. Piggy! Were you uncomfortable in my little bag? I guess the trip from Okinawa really made you tired! Awww, Hehehe!" She tickled the small black pig that had a yellow bandana tied to its neck. It cutely cuddled to her tickles, that is until Ranma instantly knew who that little 'Mr. Piggy' exactly was.


End of Chapter 5.

Damn, how long had I haven't updated? Long time for me—well that's because it's summer vacation baby! Wahhooo! Yeah! Punk Rock! LOL, anyway, nice to see you all. I'm going to give you a sneak preview on the next chapter…

Next time on Patience of a Martial Artist: With Ryoga suddenly appearing, what will the black pig do to make Ranma miserable? And what's this strange feeling Ranma suddenly got just by looking at the gorgeous Mutsumi? Only several days left until the roaring Akane Tendo and the others will appear! When will Ranma's secret be revealed? Will Narusegawa ever trust Ranma again? Why aren't I showing Keitaro a lot? Because I hate Keitaro, Ranma is way better lol, I'm evil. When will Kitsune force Ranma to do the Drunken Master style? Will I suddenly make Motoko pair off with Kanako because I love doing it for the fun of it? Find out on the next…








Creator of Love Hina… Ken Akamatsu and Tokyo Pop

Creator of Ranma… Rumiko Takahashi

Creator of Patience of a Martial Artist… Panda Inc.

Spell-Checker/Grammar editor… Innortal








… this is an awkward moment… I still love you LOL.

The Desperado… Yes! And Mutsumi is the first woman that's going to HAVE his soul! If ya know what I mean… LOL… eww.

Warlordmega… Yep! Ain't it grand to be alive to see my story come back to life?

Lunarian… You think this is a serious fic? Well… you're a big meanie! Look at Wonderbee31's comment. I haven't thought of it before, so that proves how stupid I am but uh… wait… what was I talking about again… oh yeah… um… you see the explanation Haruka gave? I'm pretty sure that reason seems solid right? (sweats nervously) Don't get mad at me! I love you! You wouldn't kill a person that confessed something utterly ridiculous so she can avoid getting one of her reviewer's disappointed… or avoid getting her reviewers motivated to kill her by her flawed chapters, right? Okay! Moving on!

Lord of the Pit… Good! Now what did you learned today? n.n!

Innortal… I know where you live! Ummm… it feels kind of awkward speaking to you like this lol. Alrighty then, I shall continue with my excellently!

Fenix Down… meh… you'll see.

Sk8er7… WOW! And you know what else is amazing? YOU! LoL…



Love, always, Panda.