Disclaimer: I don't own YYH—wish I did, but since I don't, whatever ideas I get go here and not into the actual anime...(sigh)...
Summary: Yusuke goes on one last training trip with Genkai to China after he gets back from Makai. What happens when he takes a hit to the head and ends up falling into an ordinary-looking pool that turns out to be more than what it looks like? Ranma Parody, please R&R!
Pairings: Yusuke/Keiko is the only clear thing for now. :D Or is it? ;;) Hehe—you'll have to find out! XP
Rating: T for language—just to be safe. :D
Author's Note: (clears throat) How long have you waited? Let us count the days...
Seriously though, HI EVERYONE! I'm so sorry I took so long in updating—despite constant promises of updating quickly. Thus, henceforth I shall promise no more—and hope that you'll simply be patient with me and resist flaming my ass in an attempt to get me moving. I'm really, really sorry!
To make up for it, this chapter is the longest I've written so far—eight pages with the author's notes cut out. There's no direct involvement between Yusuke and the rest of the Reikai Tantei save Genkai—not directly, at least. You'll see, hehe. Just please forgive me for making you wait, and do enjoy what I've brought as a peace offering.
Wrong Person, Wrong Time Of Month
Huh. What would Yusuke do without me?
Genkai could afford to be smug as she watched her pupil's reiki solidifying, converging into her—his being with a fluidity that made the old woman proud. Whatever Yusuke lacked in other kinds of contemplation he made up for in fighting, where his mind, body, and soul made all the right moves and calculations. It was their last week in China and Yusuke was in perfect form, banishing her worries that they would have to extend their stay because he'd spent a good amount of time fretting over his "girl trouble" as she and Ling liked to call his abrupt plunge (pun not intended) into female sexuality.
Now where there had been chaos and misery in his heart there was furious determination that shoved away his lingering fears into the small part of Yusuke's mind that liked to think about things. The rest of him was absorbed into what he had come to China for, and that was not a gender problem, it was training.
As she dodged a punch she admired his form and inwardly smiled with approval at how neatly and uncongealed his transition from offense to defense was when she launched her own attack. The reiki that had been concentrated in his fist for the attack dispersed instantly as he guarded for her blows, and she was pleased beyond measure that his reiki was enough for him to brace for the attack. He no longer needed the support of the earth beneath his feet to anchor himself, nor was his physical strength that great of a factor in keeping himself from being forced back. It was delighting.
She also noticed how well his Mazoku powers had incorporated themselves into his reiki and fighting style without necessarily dislodging what had been there previously. The spirit detective whose power she had honed and to whom she had entrusted her own strength had managed to merge what she and his human side had given him with his Mazoku roots. In many cases of such people as Yusuke—though such people were very rare—it was either the fighter prized one kind of power over the other. In Yusuke's case, she had expected him to take on the infinitely more vicious, all-consuming, and ambiguous power attributed to his Mazoku line. Instead he had surprised her and made her proud by finding a mesh for both kinds of power. At the beginning, he had either fought like a spirit detective or a Mazoku. Now that he had officially found a way to fight like both at the same time, she considered the goals she had set for his training met.
"You're spacing out, grandma!"
Genkai blinked, then grinned to hide her surprise as she narrowly escaped being crushing into the ground by Yusuke's descending leg. Her pupil whirled, dark brows snapping together worriedly even as he brusquely barbed, "What's the matter? Too hot? You need a nap or something?"
"I was getting a little bored," the spirit master yawned insultingly. "Training with you for the past week has been getting so routine."
"Well excuse me for making considerations for your health," Yusuke shot back, huffing indignantly although they both knew that wasn't true. He'd been fighting as hard as though he was in a tournament against the odds again—and the landscape as well as their swelling "damages account" with Ling could attest to that.
"Well, when you get to the top, where else can you go?" Genkai shrugged, still speaking in a flat, bored voice. "That's why they say perfection is boring, kid."
Yusuke blinked, and Genkai earnestly wished she had that camera Keiko had insisted they bring to "cherish" their time in China with—for when they trained, went to eat, toured, etc. Secretly, Genkai had the feeling Keiko wanted to know who Yusuke had been hanging out with in China when they got home and she felt a hysterical swell of laughter as she considered showing Keiko a picture of herself, Yusuke, and Ling.
Oh yeah, Ling is certainly competition for Yusuke's affections, she snorted, suppressing a full-blown shout of laughter.
Then again, if she showed Keiko a picture of Yusuke in girl form...
Why hadn't Yusuke been born a girl, she wondered absently. He was certainly pretty enough as a female, and his temperament was certainly more appealing when he was a woman than when he was a guy. As a guy his attitude labeled him as a punk—as girl it was refreshing. She admired her "child" as only a mother could, unable to stop chuckling as a bright strawberry blush colored the soft peach of Yusuke's cheeks and he yanked up a bra strap uncomfortably, clearly not expecting to be called "perfect" in terms of his fighting abilities.
He looked so fetching dressed up as a girl, she sighed wistfully. He'd submitted himself willingly enough to her heretofore unknown makeover fetish and allowed her to cut his long hair several inches shorter after combing became too much of a hassle. The heat was curling the ends and the natural waves looked becoming either tied up or let down. He'd even reluctantly gone shopping with her after a session she'd had to stop because his "jugs" hurt from all the movement. It was a stretch to get him to try on lingerie after his nose bled upon entrance to the shop, so she settled for sports bras (and one pushup), cotton panties, tank tops, and loose-fitting jogging pants. Strangely enough, Yusuke's foot size remained the same as a female, so the need for new training footwear was immediately out. But that didn't mean skipping footwear altogether, she smiled mischievously, remembering the stilettos she had shoved under the unsuspecting Yusuke's bed. They served no purpose and they cost a lot, but could you blame a bored old lady for wanting to dress up a son who had so conveniently undergone a magical sex change?
"You're trying to lure me into a false sense of security," he accused, trying and failing to sound suspicious. He knew a compliment when he heard it—he wasn't that much of an idiot. But it was still hard to internalize that Genkai was saying he'd pretty much learned and mastered it all. It sounded too much like a goodbye—like those scenes in movies with inspirational theme music and the dying master saying something like, "...(cough)...I have nothing more to teach you, my child..."
He pushed the idea away resolutely. So what if she had nothing more to teach him? Teachers didn't kick the bucket just because their students graduated, did they? She'd probably be teaching his children and their children after them.
How did you get children without a partner? The thought of kids and grandkids had brought forth his favorite mental picture of his fiancée—and how exactly he was going to tell her about his problem.
"Hey Keiko! Guess what? If you've ever had any lesbian fantasies, well you won't have to worry about cheating on me to fulfill them...when you marry me, you'll actually be getting the best of both worlds, hehe..."
He shook his head. That was too...he didn't like the idea of Keiko fantasizing about getting it on with other chicks.
"Hey honey! You know, it's really good that they legalized same-sex marriages recently because you won't believe what happened in China. Don't worry though, you still get to be the bride..."
"Yup, training's officially over, then."
He snapped out of his semi-hysterical contemplations and met Genkai's laughing gaze.
"I already said it, didn't I?" His master lifted a brow imperiously. "I don't want to waste any more of my valuable time—not just because you've learned it all, but because you've got that dumb look on your face that tells me teaching you at this point would be pointless."
"Huh? Y-You mean we're done?" We're going home then?
"Unless you'd rather hang out here with Ling. He's taken quite a liking to you..."
The hint of a pervert flew right over Yusuke's head as panic swelled in his chest.
"But I still feel like a weakling! The time I wasted doing nothing still needs to be made up for! You can't slash out two weeks of training! I can't have learned it all! I mean, w-where's the rush, right?"
Genkai heaved an irritated sigh, but she conceded that she was—as mean as it seemed—relishing the prospect of bringing home a female Yusuke to his fiancée and friends. After all, while the boy (Girl now, she corrected, cackling in her mind) had all the best fighting skills and was a lion in a fighting situation, he was still unconfident and woefully unequipped in social situations.
It was time Yusuke learned how to deal with people and fix social problems. After all, he was right. He hadn't learned it all—not yet.
Keiko Yukimura was in an especially good mood that day. The patrons and staff of the small but frequented noodle shop felt it almost tangibly as she came down the steps from the family's apartment like a debutante at her coming-out, put on an apron like she was putting on a Prada gown, and went to work like she was painting a masterpiece or serving ambrosia to the gods.
She was glowing. Literally. Like a lamp had been turned on underneath, her fair skin looked like it was cast in moonlight and through the fine fringes of her lashes her eyes resembled earth that had seen fresh rain. She was moving about the shop like a moonbeam, her silky brown hair tied back in a forgiving bow, leaving flirtatious tendrils to preen over her face. Slender arms took up trays easily twice her size, gentle hands cleaned up messy tables and the faces of the children who messed them, and she rung up bills and dispensed change with a soft, inexplicably grateful smile on her face.
Business picked up and work got harder, customers got impatient and the staff got defensive. Yet the aura of one who feels truly blessed pervaded the steamy, smoky air, and brought boiling tempers down to a strange simmer.
Kazuma Kuwabara carefully refrained from voicing the comment out loud, but his boisterous and blunt nature gave him some difficulty. He was one of the regulars at the Yukimura's shop, firstly because he and Keiko went way back, secondly because they served really good, affordable food, and finally because it was a convenient stop on the way home from his university classes, which he had crammed from 6 AM to 1 PM. His mind often went to computer games and boxing come afternoon, and being forced to sit in class when he'd rather be busting faces (literally or otherwise) made him cranky.
And he wasn't the only one like that. He watched Keiko smile soothingly at a particularly loud and hot-headed old man and frowned in confusion. Keiko hated working at the family's shop, as far as he knew. She devoted a lot of time to her studies and a school club (exactly what was it again she'd joined...?), and would usually be neck-deep in books at the library or attending a club activity on the weekend. She'd even considered taking on a part-time job, but given that the university prohibited it the only way for her to help the family was to help with the business. It wasn't so much the work or the people she worked with, but as the old man snarled at her when she approached with his bill, he understood the amount of self-restraint it took not to smash people's faces in at times.
But she didn't seem to be having any trouble at all. He'd seen her on one of her worse days near the midterm examinations with a couple that spilled the food and refused to pay, so he had something to compare to. The crowd was almost as rowdy as it had been on that day, but here was Keiko, smiling in the face of irate, starved consumers.
Maybe her parents are giving her a raise? No, she doesn't get paid in the first place—that would count as her being a part-timer and that would give her trouble. Hmmm...this is weird. I'm getting creeped out. Maybe I should just pay for the food and—
"Are you almost through, Kuwabara?" Keiko asked, materializing at his side. Strangling the unmanly shriek that jumped from his vocal cords into an uncomfortable choking sound, he nodded rapidly.She beamed at him, patting his back helpfully as he continued to cough. "Good. Are you busy after?"
Kuwabara's brow crinkled as he took a long gulp of water to soothe his throat.
"Not particularly," he responded. "Why?"
Keiko grinned and unceremoniously slammed the tray she held down on his head, startling the customers with the sound of his skull splitting and the excited shrieking that followed.
"YUSUKE'S COMING HOME!"
Poor Kuwabara, Keiko's parents thought, their eyes meeting as they chuckled simultaneously. Both of them had a feeling it had to do with Yusuke—not much else had the capacity to get Keiko so exuberantly joyful.
"Did he call you, Keiko?" her mother called out, hoping to stop her as the tray cracked and several pieces flew hazardously into the air.
It did the trick.
Sobering abruptly, Keiko turned away from Kuwabara and worriedly put her hand to her cheek. The remains of the tray fell to the floor unnoticed and her father moved discreetly to find some ice and bandages for Kuwabara's head.
"No, actually," said Keiko, her pretty brows contracting. "I called to ask how he was doing, but Mr. Ling said he'd already brought Yusuke and Genkai to the airport early this morning. I wonder why he wouldn't call me."
"Maybe he's hoping to surprise you?" her mother suggested comfortingly, not wanting Keiko's mood to spiral in the opposite direction. Lord knew she could be as dangerous when she was mad as when she was happy.
"Yeah, I guess so!" Keiko laughed, giggling and blushing. She turned and put her hands on her hips, annoyed that one person was not cooperating with her plans for a wonderful day. "Hey, Kuwabara, wake up! We have to leave in an hour if we're going to be on time to meet Yusuke!"
"I am never flying first class with you again," Genkai solemnly promised, casting her young pupil an irritated glance.
Beside her Yusuke growled, shoving a handful of peanuts into his mouth and chomping on them noisily before reaching over to his orange juice and gargling with it prior to swallowing. An elderly couple nearby shot him a scandalized look, but quickly averted their eyes when he looked at them challengingly.
"Stop that!" Genkai hissed. "If either of them have a heart attack, you'll be held responsible!"
"Well sorry for being so bitchy today, Genkai!" Yusuke snapped right back. "It's not my fault this body is so messed up!"
The wife gasped, turning to cast a censorious look on Yusuke regardless of her earlier intimidation. Smiling awkwardly, Genkai smacked Yusuke's head down and leaned in to whisper warningly.
"You idiot, you make it sound like you've been raped! Would you keep your voice down?"
"Why are you always so mean to me? It's always, 'Yusuke do this' and 'Yusuke do that' and 'Something's wrong with you, you fool'!" Yusuke sniffled and Genkai felt her facial muscles tick apprehensively.
This was not good.
"All right, all right, I'm sorry," the spirit master apologized half-sincerely, casting the various pairs of eyes turned in their direction a warning glance. When she was satisfied with the amount of awkward throat-coughing and shuffling newspapers as people duly went back to minding their own businesses, she turned back to her young student. She inwardly cursed Ling for being so clumsy as to insist on drinking his energy drink while driving them to the airport. It was his fault they'd nearly missed their flight, as well as the fact that his hazardous driving had resulted in a little interlude between Yusuke and the energy drink. Thus the plan to have Yusuke leave China as a man (just as he had arrived as a man), went clean out the window. And it just so happened that upon turning into a girl...
Yusuke did not take to menstruation well.
The first time it had happened, he'd simply lain in bed for days, mortified at his situation and unwilling to receive assistance from anyone. He'd taken the cramping reasonably well—but the mood swinging and bouts of irritability were definitely things he needed time to cope with.
And that was before Genkai educated him on tampon usage.
The memory made her smile, and she patted Yusuke soothingly on the head, glad to see the sniffing subside. Pouting adorably, the former spirit detective rubbed the sleeve of his red jacket over his face, rubbing at the tear tracks and his nose. He then remembered that it was his favorite and Keiko had given it to him before the trip. It was embarrassingly adorned with his surname lavishly embroidered on the back, but it being Keiko's gift he had wanted to wear it on his homecoming. It simply felt right to have something she made over his shoulders, on his back. During his more fanciful moments (which, he was loathe to admit, seemed to occur more and more frequently as of late), he liked to think that having the jacket on was like having Keiko's slim arms wrapped around him comfortingly.
Yusuke sniffled dangerously.
"What is it?" Genkai asked worriedly, wondering if it was time to call for a tranquilizer.
Yusuke shook his head, then bit his lip.
"I miss Keiko."
Genkai smirked. "Well you'll be seeing her soon enough. I estimate another hour before we land."
"What's taking them so long?" Keiko snapped impatiently, pacing back and forth like a caged tiger as her suddenly sharp, hawk-like eyes pierced the crowd of passengers who were milling through the busy airport. "They landed an hour ago, I'm sure!"
"Um...custom and luggage problems?" suggested Kuwabara carefully, flinching when she turned her blazing gaze in his direction. He learned that despite her earlier cheerfulness, today was not one of Keiko's best anatomical days. If her routine checking of wherever she sat and the glimpse he'd caught of a floral wrapper for a sanitary napkin told him anything, this was in fact one of the more volatile, dangerous days to interact with Keiko. Sure, she was cheery and on Cloud Nine when she knew her boyfriend was coming home, but make him an hour late and Cloud Nine became the Ninth Circle of Hell.
But Kuwabara understood perfectly. Hell, he was just a friend and he'd had plenty to keep him busy and from missing Yusuke, but even he was getting antsy. He stood up, stretching legs that had been useless for the good part of two hours.
Keiko sighed heavily, knowing it wouldn't be fair to snap at Kuwabara for it, particularly when he made a very valid suggestion. Still, she couldn't help herself. She was nearly jumping out of her skin to see him. It had been too long—for both of them, she was sure. He didn't call as much as he had promised he would, and Mr. Ling had been making disturbing inferences like, "Oh, it's his female problem" and had even once said, "They went to buy lingerie." She chalked it up initially to lack of proficiency in Japanese, but that seemed sketchy because she had no problem understanding him at all other than when he spoke so confusingly like that. Perhaps he had been referring to Genkai as Yusuke's "female problem"? Kami knew she gave him a hard time, though it was what was best for him. But what did they go to the lingerie store for?
She shook her head, dispelling the image of Genkai dragging Yusuke to such a shop for him to comment. Heck, the very idea of Genkai trying on lingerie and asking, "How do I look?" was simply...
"I know," Keiko agreed seriously, not realizing that it was Kuwabara who had unwittingly completed her thought for her. "Still, I really want to talk to Yusuke about it. Not now, of course—what kind of fiancée would I be, jumping him with an interrogation the minute he lands? Is Mr. Ling the kind of guy who likes to tease and cause trouble? Surely Genkai would keep Yusuke busy enough to keep him from doing anything..." She flushed indignantly. "Well, Yusuke would never do anything of the sort to begin with! Get a grip—"
Kuwabara shook her roughly, cutting into her out-loud tête-à-tête with herself and nearly dislocating her shoulder. It was a very good thing she saw the confused, worried look on his face mid-snarl and she managed to keep herself from knocking his teeth in.
"What?" she asked, hopping up and down uselessly as she attempted to see what Kuwabara's height gave him the privilege of spying.
"Here," he offered, releasing her arm in favor of taking her by the waist and lifting her onto a seat.
"Where?" asked Keiko excitedly and impatiently when she still didn't see what had Kuwabara interested.
Kuwabara lifted his hand, pointing to the customs block where it was yet again exceptionally crowded. Keiko squinted, deciding that despite her size, it would be easier to locate—
"Genkai!" she cried excitedly, spotting a child-like figure with faded pink hair and dark traditional attire handing her papers to the bespectacled customs' agent while security scanned her things.
"Where's Urameshi, though?" Kuwabara asked, making known what had bothered instead of elated him at the sight of Genkai. "Don't tell me Genkai came alone. Maybe Yusuke just brought her over to the airport then went back to train by himself?"
Keiko's brows snapped together, the hope in chest suddenly pierced by Kuwabara's suggestion. She felt her throat constrict painfully and she watched as Genkai passed through customs and the next person stepped up.
A person who was not Yusuke.
It was a pretty girl who leaned towards the customs' agent and whispered something that clearly made the agent uncomfortable. If his body language and the vibrant strawberry blush on his cheeks was anything to go by, she had just said something extremely embarrassing. Still, the agent was nodding furiously and stamping the girl's passbook like nothing was wrong. The girl grinned at him and walked forward, collecting her things from security. She seemed to have a lot of stuff—security had just lowered the fifth bag to the floor to make room for the next passenger's things. Keiko turned her eyes away from the curious girl and looked towards the next passenger.
Who was, yet again, not Yusuke.
"Where is he?" she whispered, worriedly, bitter disappointment gnawing at her stubborn hope.
Kuwabara was not deaf to the catch in her voice, and ever the gentleman he racked his brains for some thought that would dispel the gloom that was quickly settling over his friend.
"Um...hey, maybe he got in before Genkai!" Kuwabara slapped his hand to his forehead, craning his neck further to try and locate the spirit master as more and more people passed through customs.
"No, he has to be after," Keiko answered, though her voice was brighter. "See, there's Genkai and she seems to be waiting for someone!"
She pointed in the direction of the small old woman, who was indeed tapping her foot impatiently. Of course Yusuke was here. It was unthinkable that only Genkai would return to Japan. After all, what reason did Yusuke have to stay behind in China? She was in Japan. And she was one-hundred-and-fifty percent sure that wherever she was, Yusuke would want to be.
But the person who walked up to Genkai carrying an armload of bags was, horrifyingly, not Yusuke. She stared, a numbness seeping into her chest as Kuwabara's loud words about baseless worries faded into a shocked silence.
It was the girl who'd come right after Genkai, and Keiko watched with growing tension as Genkai evidently said something explosive that caused the girl to gasp in outrage and drop one of the bags she was carrying. Clearly pissed, she dropped all of the bags she was carrying and bent over, trying to stuff one of the smaller bags into one of the larger ones and make handling them all easier.
When she did so, Keiko saw the dark stitching on the back of the girl's jacket—which she then noticed was red.
"Kuwabara," Keiko whispered softly, her own voice inaudible against the roaring in her ears and the pounding in her chest. "Why is that girl wearing Yusuke's jacket?"
"Man, customs' is a bitch," Yusuke complained loudly, stomping on the small bag when it refused to sink into the large duffel containing his clothes. At the offended sound the customs' agent made, Yusuke turned back to him, winking apologetically. The young man flushed, stamping his own hand in his flustered state. Yusuke suppressed a chuckle. After all...
"...um...Mr. Urameshi?" the young man asked uncertainly, staring down at the cocky grin of the male in the passbook and looking up at the sparkling features of the young woman in front of him.
"Any problems, sir?" she asked with a friendly smile, dimples showing in her smooth cheeks.
"Ah...er...w-well...Miss...i-is this yours?"
He held up the passbook, indicating the picture of the young man awkwardly.
The young woman laughed, her eyes widening comprehendingly.
"Oh, that," she snickered. Leaning forward, she whispered—her voice lower by several alarming octaves—"I went to China to have a sex change."
"Hey!" Genkai exclaimed, annoyed. "Those are your toiletries! There's some stuff in there that might break and ruin the bag—and your clothes!" Whapping Yusuke in an annoyed motion, she yanked the crushed bag from beneath his foot. "And stop teasing him!"
Privately, she had to give Yusuke props for what he had just pulled. As a girl, Yusuke's voice was low and sexy—but definitely a woman's. How he had managed to make himself sound like a messed up Kuwabara to get through customs' was inspired. It was funny how she had never considered the problem before boarding the plane. They'd considered changing him back into a boy before landing, but what would that look like to the other passengers when it had been a girl that had boarded? Hell, it was a good thing the customs back in China had been so crowded and their rush for the plane so frantic that the difference between the Yusuke in the flesh and the Yusuke in the passbook had been missed. If she hadn't planned that out then she really was getting old...
"Well if it's such a big deal, you carry it then," Yusuke grumbled, a bit put off that she was killing his fun. Zipping up the duffel he reached for the rest of their things and heaved them up, obeying Genkai's command dutifully and resisting the urge to turn back and tease the customs' agent some more.
"This makeup is expensive, you know," Genkai lectured, surprised that now that she'd taught Yusuke the serious things she was now focusing on trivial things. "The Xi Wangmu Peach Cream is almost 50,000 yen!"
Yusuke rolled his eyes. "Then that's the first thing I'm giving to Keiko."
Further Author's Notes: First of all, my thank-you-s: (let's hope no one takes me down for it)
inu-yusukekaiba102: ...uwaa. (sniff) I took really long this time, I'm so sorry! I really hope you liked this one, and thank you for reviewing. ;)
Kenshin-Battosai: Sorry I haven't reviewed your story lately—I'll get to it ASAP. It's been a busy semester, but I'm on break now, so I'll go straight to reading and commenting. Thank you for reading and commenting on mine—I'm so glad you liked it. :)
Kuramastrass –Keiko Minamino-: Well, I did it!—only "later" instead of "now"—so I hope you still like it and think it's great. (crosses fingers) Thanks so much! ;)
NebuNeferu: TA-DA! ;) The update is here—very, very, inexcusably late, but here! ;) I'm hoping you like it—and do comment. I'm interested in learning what you think of the plot direction I took. This isn't the whole of it yet—I'll substantiate it more come next chapter, but let me know what you think so far. ;) Thank you! ;)
Thunderstorm101: You're very welcome, and I'm very happy you like it! ;) Thank you for your support! ;)
DarkWolves Faith: Well, there's more Yusuke/Keiko-ness in here—but as you've read, with a darker twist. Hehe...hope you like it just the same. There's more come next chapter. Thank you for your support! ;)
I truly hope you enjoyed this chapter, and I'm looking forward to hearing what you all think. Next up: Kurama and Hiei's entrance. ;) Don't we all want to know what's going to happen? ;) So quick, click the review button and be internet hounds on my heels for the update. ;) I don't run fast. Heehee...(wink) ;)