Ranma sat on the porch reflecting a few weeks after the failed wedding. He never told anyone, but he had sensed a different type of energy during his battle with Saffron. He had a significant amount of ki, but it was only as much as someone like Akane, although it had neither the small focus or developed form of hers. It was obvious he wasn't a martial artist and in tune with his spiritual energies (after using so much in the battle with the Phoenix, he found was more sensitive to it than ever; he could even sense the old goat coming.). However, Saffron was in tune with the other type of energy. The energy was more lively and complicated than ki. Ki was a reflection of will and emotion; the spirit. The energy Saffron wielded was patterned, and seemed to resonate with something other than emotions, like ki. Ranma took a while to find it, but inside himself he found a small store of the same type of energy, but a different resonation. It seemed to be the polar opposite of Saffron. He also seemed to have a foreign type of energy of the same type in him. It flared and changed when his curse was activated. He had discovered magic! He tried to use it like ki, but he had been seriously drained when he did a blast of it. The blast was nothing compared to his chi blasts. Then again, he surmised, it wasn't trained like his ki. The energy he used also wasn't replaced. That scared him. Since then he had been training himself to "see" the energy. Everyone had it, but he found curse victims had more.
Ranma played with his curse a few times while he sat on a roof with a kettle and a glass of water. He examined how the energy worked. He noticed it drained energy from the water he was splashed with. Ironically, it seemed to be the same type his personal store of it did.
After much studying, Ranma found that only water had that type of energy. Maybe he could absorb the energy of water to fix his own store?
The house began to shake on its foundation. Everyone in the dojo was awakened when it was followed by a scream. The residents ran downstairs to find Ranma in the pond, the water seeming to boil. Ranma's mouth and eyes were opened in a scream, and the shined with a powerful light.
"Ranma?!" Akane called frantically. She hadn't talked much to Ranma after the wedding. They no longer fought and argued anymore because she had been thrown off center by the anger Ranma radiated when it was blown up and done. He had screamed about how tired of the 'bullshit' he went off on a list of what everyone did to piss him off. Everyone had studiously avoided mentioning the wedding, and backed off from him. The only Kodachi had the nerve to approach him during his ranting, even though he was glowing an angry red that was usually associated to Akane. For her to see it from third person like that...it was a quieting effect. Ranma must have been pretty angry because he actually hit Kodachi, sending her into orbit much like her brother. No one had seen her around again.
As everyone watched, the water around Ranma swelled, and then exploded in an elegant splash. In midair the water seemed to pause, snapshot quality, and reverse, flowing into Ranma. Then the light and the screaming were gone as everyone ran to the pond, to find dead fish and Ranma gasping on her hands and knees.
Akane was the first to arrived at the edge and gasped at what she saw. Ranma's former red hair...it was a rich unnatural blue.
Ranma went into the pond, to attempt his experiment while everyone was asleep like every time before he tapped this strange new energy. Previously, he had only been able to see the energy, and watch how it worked. Apparently it was the basis for his curse. It must be magic, Ranma concluded. He tried to control the energy of it inside him, and only managed to slow the transformations, nothing more. When he tried to manipulate energy, his internal source imposed itself on the task, attempting to do what he asked of it. He didn't have enough, it seemed, and his store was dangerously low from his experiments. It seemed to be a natural energy, just like ki, and he feared without any he would die just the same. Tonight was the night he decided to attempt to replace it with the same energy all water seemed to have.
Ranma stood in the pond and took a deep breath to find her center to concentrate. She felt his inner store and then she felt for the energy surrounding her in the water. She pulled it to her core and then everything went white as she was overwhelmed with information, suddenly she felt everything within a mile. She could "see" everything, walls or no.
She felt exhilarated as an immense amount of energy flooded into her. It was pure rapture and ecstasy. She felt old scars and old wounds disappearing, while previously broken bones and torn tendons became as if the were never damaged. She vaguely realized the earth around her was shaking and people were approaching, judging by the odd energy (perhaps it was mana like in games?), ki signatures, and the fact with he new sight he could "see" them without looking.
Then almost as almost as soon as the flood began, it stopped, and Ranma fell to the bottom of the pound gasping. She felt shock and surprise from someone above her. In fact she could "see" the expression. Her sight was more like in intimate awareness of where everything was. She could tell the expression on her face, and now the others that joined her, by the shape she knew her face took.
"Ranma?!" She said with panic and awe. "What happened?"
Ranma gave a soft smile as he felt her concern. She began to wonder why she was ever afraid Akane didn't love her. Ranma stood, taking in the feel of everything, both natural and unnatural. Ah, he found there were four major types of mana. They were classically elemental: Earth, Water, Fire, Wind. It seemed there were combinations and alterations of those. All wood in the trees around her seemed a modification of Earth and do did steel. Metals seemed to be a very solid form of Earth.
"Ranma? Y-your hair...eyes?" Despite Ranma's warm smile, Akane was still very much worried.
Ranma came out of her examination of her new reality and felt out what Akane meant. She blinked. She was taller than usual. Her hair and eyes where a deep blue...and her eyes didn't seem to have irises like she felt from everyone else. In fact they were entirely blue if Ranma didn't know any better, judging by the "tone" of the light reflecting off of them.
"Ah...um..." Ranma was somewhat shocked by her changes. She felt her fathers confusion and anger at being confused.
"Ranma! What did you do?!? And why do you look so...girly?"
It as then Ranma realized her hair had came down in the confusion. She just frowned lightly before speaking.
"I don't know what happened entirely, but I'm fine. In fact, I'm better than I've ever been."
She looked at her father and saw the binds of the curse. She could tell the make of it, and debated whether she would try to remove it with her new power. Then she thought again. 'Nah, pops deserves what he got.'
She decided to take a look at her own curse. She gasped. It was entirely bonded with her, it fused with her own mana center when she absorbed that flood of water. She almost panicked. Can I still change? She willed the change by making the patterned mana, which she recognized as the curse, think she came in contact with water with her own water element mana. The change came slowly and her body had a hard time changing. It seemed her new mana store was attempting to heal what it thought was damage when her body rearranged itself. She screamed in pain loudly and it sounded odd as it turned into a male voice, dropping in octaves.
Ranma found himself hugged suddenly by Akane, she was radiating concern. Ranma awkwardly pat her on her back to assure her.
"What's wrong Ranma? Why did you change without water?"
Ranma's thoughts jumbled before he ordered them. "Um... I made myself change... It hurts."
Ranma suddenly realized his new "sight" diminished ridiculously now as a boy. It seemed since his mana was linked with the curse, her access was dampened when it wasn't active. He also felt...off in his form, much like when his balance was off when he first changed into a girl, he felt this way now as a boy. But he was born a boy, why would he feel so odd in his natural form?
"How?!" Genma shouted. The boy had figured out how to control the curse!
"Um...I used the energy I just got from the water."
"You can get energy from the water?! It must be immense if you can use it to change at will! How did you do it?"
"Um...I absorbed it."
"I get that boy! But how?!"
Ranma peered closely at his father with his eyes, which felt like normal, with none of the changes his girl side had. "I don't know how to explain it. It's a new type of energy. I think its 'mana'. Ya know, like the energy anime and games say is used for magic. I think that's what it is because my curse was ...made of it."
Genma absorbed this with wild eyes. "So...could you get rid of the curse?" He asked excitedly.
Akane knelt by Ranma, removing herself from their small embrace. Now that she was relatively sure he was okay, she didn't feel the need to hold him anymore. Even if it was nice. She listened to him quietly from beside him.
"Maybe. Not mine though. Since my energy type seems to be water, it bonded with my center for my mana. In fact I feel weaker as a boy."
Genma frowned when Ranma said he was weaker as a boy. "Well, you'll just have to toughen up! Now, try and remove my curse!"
Ranma found himself again as he snorted. "As if I'd remove your curse. It's your fault I have mine, along with fifty million other problems."
Genma suddenly got really angry. "Disrespecting boy! I'll teach you some respect."
Ranma felt his father's aura flare as he went into a flying kick. Ranma caught his foot and redirected his momentum over his head and into the stones on the other side of the pound. Surprisingly, the old man got back up and attempted to attack again. Ranma actually had to stand and after a short exchange, sent her father smacking into the wall, cracks spreading out from his point of impact.
"Buzz off. If you want me to fix your curse, you fix all the problems you've caused me...then I'll think about it."
Genma stood up after his fall to the ground. He wiped the small amount of blood on his chin off with the back of his hand and regarded his son. He hadn't been able to beat his son in a long time, thanks to the constant battling with the Hibiki boy and the old Amazon's training. He WOULD have his curse cured though...but how? He decided to use something he didn't use often...his head. Until he came up with a way to either beat his son, or trap him someway, he would bid his time.
"If you don't cure me, you'll regret it."
Ranma sneered, "What can a panda like you do anyway? Other than screw up your son's life?"
Genma scowled. "I'll remember that, boy." Genma stalked back to the house, everyone's eyes following him.
"Ranma is it true? Can you cure curses now?" Kasumi asked.
Ranma leaned his head to the side thoughtfully. "Yeah. I think so. It feels kind of like a knot in someone's body and aura. All you have to do is untie it and pull it out...I think."
Ranma yawned and stood. "Well that was enough excitement for the night. I need to go to sleep."
Akane looked at him warily. She waited for him to go in first, observing him from behind.
Ranma laid there in his futon as his pops laid beside him. His father seemed to be pretending to be asleep. With Ranma's new sensitivity for aura's, he could tell his father was conscious, his aura was too focused. He laid there for a while, staring at the ceiling. He wasn't the least bit tired. He wasn't particularly energetic, like on a sugar high, but he seemed not to tire.
He ended up laying there past her father falling asleep, waiting for her to. He felt Kasumi wake up and dress. Ranma blushed as he realized that he could "see" past her clothes. 'Wow, Kasumi might have a better form than me.' Ranma thought again about his girl side. 'Well, maybe before the change last night.'
Ranma was immensely bored and decided to get up and bathe while he waited for breakfast. Maybe he'd even help Kasumi.
He went downstairs and into the furo. He lathered up and rinsed off with...cold water.
Ranma bit back a scream as his internal energies clashed. She fell back onto the floor gasping in relief from the pain. Ranma stood and realized she was taller than before. She sort of realized it with her higher sense, but it truly sunk in when she used her regular sight. She walked to the mirror and realized she was taller than Akane but slightly shorter than his male side. She gasped in awe at the changes to her appearance in the mirror. So that was how she looked to others now. She sighed and stood in front of the furo. She was about to step in when she thought differently. She realized it would hurt getting in. She decided to pass the soak, and went towards the changing room. Kasumi opened the door. Ranma blinked. She stopped paying attention to her higher senses, both her new one and her ki sense, when she was observing herself in the mirror. She never realized Kasumi was about to bathe.
Ranma blushed. "Um..."
Kasumi didn't seem to be bothered, surprisingly. In fact, she seemed to be more curious.
Kasumi stared deeply into Ranma's new eyes, and felt like she was trying to see the bottom of an ocean in twilight. Kasumi's wandered over her face and hair, noticing the more mature and sharpened angles in Ranma's face. She seemed older than Kasumi herself and was about the same height. Ranma probably looked like she would in a few years...her prime. Kasumi's gaze wandered down Ranma's body, noticing the breasts didn't seem as big on the taller, more slender body. She noticed that Ranma apparently didn't shave, and her hair was blue down south as well. Ranma's legs seemed long and soft, yet toned.
Kasumi breathed, "You're beautiful."
Ranma turned even redder. "Um...Thank you?" Ranma squeaked out, unsure.
"You're welcome. But really...you are."
Ranma was at a lost to what to do. Kasumi was blocking her only exit, and the expected pounding wasn't forthcoming.
"Would you wash my back? Ranma-chan?"
Ranma cringed. "Chan?"
Kasumi blushed. "I'm sorry, you're so beautiful I forgot that you're a boy."
Ranma scratched the back of her head. "A-heh. Yeah...I should get going..."
"Nonsense. You're a girl right now. And you wouldn't do anything improper, would you?"
"I haven't had anyone bathe with me in forever. It would be nice to have someone wash my back."
"I want to ask you about your new...power?... also."
Kasumi merely walked in and shut the door behind her.
Eventually, while blushing vividly, Ranma was washing Kasumi's back with a wash cloth.
"Why aren't you a boy?" Kasumi asked as she thought about it. Ranma should have been coming out as one...the furo was warm.
"Um... It hurts loads when I change."
"Oh...could you explain?"
Ranma explained what she thought happened at the pond the night before. Eventually ended up explaining what she discovered fighting Saffron, and that she was training at nights. Ranma paused in her recalling.
"You know Kasumi," Ranma said, entranced, "You have a beautiful aura. It's fluffy white tinted pink. Your element seems to be...wind?" She asked as she took a deep look with senses.
"Really? I suppose that is why they named me what I'm named." Kasumi smiled. "So...why are you up this morning?"
Ranma frowned. "I'm wasn't tired. In fact, I'm still not."
Kasumi looked thoughtful in a very cute fashion with a finger to her chin and her head tilted. "Maybe your new energy keeps you from getting tired?"
Ranma mulled on that, still frowning. "I have a lot of chi, but it doesn't do that..."
"Well, you never know Ranma."
Ranma nodded slowly in agreement. 'Never sleeping again... I'd be able to train all the time. Hell, I could even waste time on homework.'
Genma and Soun played Shogi while they waited for breakfast. They normally never played this early, but he couldn't find Ranma for the Saotome Sunrise Surprise attack. He wasn't focused as he tried to figure out what he could use against his son. There had to be something...
Nabiki came in den, blearily looking for Kasumi with her cup of coffee. Shortly a female Ranma looking much differently from last night, emerged from the hall from the kitchen presenting her sacred drink. However, she didn't need it as much as usual as her eyes widened in shock at memory of what happened last night and at the new appearance. Ranma now met her eye to eye and her gaze seemed to have an infinite depth. Nabiki seemed drawn to her, as she became lost in her eyes.
Ranma's previously cute smirk at Nabiki's weary appearance disappeared as Nabiki stared at her. Ranma felt like fidgeting as Nabiki's eyes tried to pierce through to her soul and seemed to have gotten lost on the way. The eerie thing about it was that her Nabiki didn't look like she normally did – predatory, cynical, amused, or sarcastic – but in awe, with a slight tinge of affection seeming to get stronger. The same emotion and feel was reflected in her aura. Ranma took a deeper look at Nabiki and that was when she realized her element...was water.
No response. Scary.
"Nabiki..." Ranma waved her hands in front of her face.
Nabiki abruptly stopped staring with a suddenly blink. "Huh?"
"Hi Nabiki. Here's your coffee."
Nabiki looked down at her hands and took the cup gently from Ranma's, affectionate brushing Ranma's hands as she took it.
She looked back into Ranma's eyes, getting slightly dazed again.
"You're...welcome." Ranma quickly retreated from the affectionate gaze back to the kitchen to help Kasumi.
With her retreat Nabiki felt an odd sense of loss. It was like she suddenly felt cold, like her campfire was put out or a nice blanket was taken from her. She felt her heart longing for him. Nabiki suppressed a shudder.
"Something's different about Ranma. Very different." Nabiki concluded out loud. Soun nodded and Genma's eyes narrowed.
Nabiki sat down thinking over what she felt from Ranma. She had felt a comforting presence that made her felt safe. Ranma felt like a lost love come back from the dead. It was unnerving for her to feel that way. She hadn't ever felt that way before, the closest thing being her...mother. She found herself longing for Ranma's presence.
Shortly Ranma returned with trays of food with Kasumi behind her. That was when Akane returned from her jog. She found it slightly odd there was no battling going on in the backyard. That was when she got an eyeful of Ranma. The night before it was dark out and she didn't get a full look. Now she realized Ranma was as tall as her and look older and maturer. She was also more beautiful than before and that thought filled her with jealousy.
Ranma smiled in her direction. "Hey, Akane."
Akane became lost in Ranma's pupil-less deep solid blue eyes and felt unnerved by it. Akane bit her lip. "Hi...Ranma." She quickly looked for something to fill the silence. "Um...you helped Kasumi?" Akane felt jealousy twinge again.
Akane nodded and sat down. Ranma and Kasumi sat down the trays of food and with an "Itadakimasu," everyone began to eat.
Ranma ate a little bit of food and found even though it was good, she wasn't very hungry. She eventually ended up poking at her food.
"If you aren't going to eat your food, I'm going to eat it, boy!"
Ranma glared at her father, then looked thoughtfully back at her food. Then she shrugged and handed it to him. Everyone gaped at her.
"What?" Ranma said irately at their stares.
"Are you alright, Ranma?" Akane asked.
"Um...yeah. I'm just not hungry..."
"I think you should go see doctor Tofu."
Ranma became defensive and snapped, "I'm fine."
"O-Okay Ranma-kun," Kasumi said, "We believe you." Her concern shined through with her wavering voice.
Ranma stood and went to sit out on the porch, thinking and feeling out everything around her with her new senses as she waited for Akane to be ready. After 20 minutes she returned from the furo ready to go.
"Um...ready to go?" Akane asked.
"Yeah...sure. Let me get my lunch."
Ranma retrieved his lunch from the Kasumi and began walking beside Akane. Nabiki was right behind them.
"You're walking with us today, Nabiki?"
Nabiki nodded to Akane who was looking over her shoulder for Nabiki's response.
"Why today? You normally take off early."
Nabiki's gaze flickered to Ranma, who was still a girl, before going back to Akane. "Just feel like it."
Akane raised an eyebrow, then dismissed it as one of Nabiki's schemes.
Ranma walked, hearing everything they said, and sensed Nabiki look at her. She wondered at the reason.
Suddenly Shampoo took that moment to show up. Ranma had already thought she felt someone approaching faster than normal. She was surprised when she wasn't meeting rubber tire. Shampoo landed neatly before the group. She narrowed her eyes.
Akane frowned. Nabiki smirked.
"Right here, Shampoo."
Ranma's words attracted Shampoo's attention.
Ranma rolled her eyes. "I'm him."
Shampoo's eyes narrowed menacingly. "You no airen."
Akane scowled before saying, "Come on Ranma, let's get to school."
Akane paused. "Why are you going as a girl?"
Ranma looked away. "It hurts when I change. I forgot this morning in the bathroom. I'll change in a little while... it takes a lot out of me."
Akane frowned and then accepted that. She did scream last night when she changed. Akane turned her up and Shampoo and attempted to walk around her. Shampoo stuck a bonbori in her path.
"Where you hide husband?"
"I'm right here, Shampoo."
Shampoo looked at the blue-haired girl with eerie eyes. She had a heavy voice that sounded like a woman's without the usual feminine lilt. The voice sounded odd as her appearance...it reminded Shampoo of someone speaking underwater.
"You not airen. Airen have red hair and shorter. No have weird eyes."
"Something happened last night and I changed."
"You lie! Imposter!" Shampoo tried to attack Ranma, who dodged nimbly without effort. After a minute of this a wary Shampoo stopped in a defensive stance. "Who you?"
Ranma blinked. "How?"
Shampoo couldn't think of how either. "If you Ranma, what happened?"
"I discovered an odd power and after fooling around with it," Ranma waved her hand at herself, "this happened."
"Shampoo not sure...but with airen, would no be surprised. Stuff always happened to husband."
Ranma grimaced. "Ain't that the truth. Anyway..." Ranma suddenly had an idea. She wouldn't remove her pop's curse because he was an asshole, but perhaps she could get something out of removing Shampoo's curse. "If I remove your curse, Shampoo, will you stop trying to marry me?"
"Ranma would never ask Shampoo not to marry. Besides, who you think can remove curse?"
"Trust me Shampoo, I'm pretty sure I can. If I can't then you don't have to do anything."
Shampoo mulled over this. "Shampoo don't like that. Still no believe you Ranma."
"Fine...I'll prove it..." Ranma took a deep breath...and changed. He fell to the ground afterwards. In a few moments the pain was gone, and he was male. He stood. "Now do you believe me, Shampoo?" He said in a familiar voice.
"Airen!" Shampoo glomped onto Ranma.
"Hey! Let go!" Ranma struggled weakly.
"Miss so much. You no mad at Shampoo anymore yes? She save you from kitchen destroyer."
Ranma felt Akane's aura flare. Ranma groaned. He got angry at Shampoo, however, at mention of the wedding. She wasn't even sorry. "GET OFF!" Ranma said in a angry voice.
Shampoo suddenly let go and looked at Ranma with hurt eyes. Ranma's resolve almost broke until he reminded himself of the wedding, and to doubly make sure his resolve didn't break, he reminded himself of all the tricks she'd used on him. "Don't look at me like that Shampoo." Ranma said in a firm voice. "You aren't even sorry for what you've done."
"No, you're not."
"So, will you accept my offer." Shampoo turned away from Ranma, a tear in her eye. "Have ask great-grandmother first."
"We go now." Shampoo got on her bike and began riding. Ranma chased after. Akane swore and tried to keep up. Nabiki jogged behind them, falling somewhat behind.
Cologne was preparing to open shop when she sensed her grandchild returning. She seemed to be in upset mood judging by her aura. She guessed the meeting with son-in-law didn't go very well.
Cologne then felt another presence following her – a powerful one. It was like son-in-laws but odd...distinct. It was a thicker presence and more pressing. Cologne quickly hopped over the counter and onto a table before the door. Shampoo came in first, scowling. Cologne sensed Akane following...and the Nabiki girl farther. Ranma came in after Shampoo.
"Hey old ghoul."
Cologne frowned, but let it slide. She tried to read Ranma's aura to pinpoint the change. It was more powerful but that was suspected after the battle with Saffron. However there was a ...pressure that she couldn't account for.
"I've come with a proposal."
Cologne cackled. "A proposal? What can you do for me?"
"Well, nothing for you. I can cure Shampoo's curse."
Cologne raised an eyebrow. "Really?" She asked skeptically.
"Yep. At a price of course. You leave me alone, and I'm no longer Shampoo's 'husband'."
"I'm not sure if I could do that...even if you could remove the curse."
"I can." Ranma said, determined to sway her.
"Well...is there way for you to prove this?"
That brought him up short. He could cure someone...but who to cure? Ryoga was no where around...and he couldn't cure Shampoo until they agreed...Mousse!
"Saotome," greeted the myopic boy. Mousse's voice contained respect and was wary. He had gained genuine fear of Ranma after Saffron. He didn't attack partly because of that, and partially because he realized now that he had no interest in Shampoo; especially judging by what he overheard with his sensitive ears.
"I'll prove I can cure a curse...I haven't tried in honesty, but I'm sure I could."
Cologne felt Ranma focus as his aura became fierce and controlled. Son-in-law was obviously in concentration. He raised his hand towards Mousse, holding his breath and closing his eyes. Cologne felt an electricity in the air. A few moments later Ranma let out his breath and lowered his hand. His eyes fluttered open.
Cologne cackled. "I don't know what you were trying, but it sounds like it didn't work. Son-in-law, the pools of sorrow were legend to be created by the Ancient Amazon god of water, Mizuki-gami. (Water Spirit Goddess). Even a mage could only lock a curse or prevent it from activating temporarily. The most powerful mages of olden only managed to make the Cold Water Ladle, and the Hot Water Kettle. You don't even know magic."
"Really? It didn't seem all that complicated to me when I locked at it."
Cologne raised an eyebrow. "You can see magic."
"Um... I guess that's what it is. Mana right?"
Cologne nodded slowly. "Yes..." Cologne was thoughtful before shaking her head. "Even if you can see magic, it doesn't mean you can manipulate it or be powerful enough to break it."
Ranma smiled cockily. "You just gave me a challenge, old bat." Ranma's smirk got bigger. "Actually I only couldn't because I have more power as a girl. The stupid curse bonded with my mana."
Cologne's eyes narrowed and she frowned. "So do you need water?" Cologne humored him.
Ranma smirked. "Nope."
Ranma triggered his curse and visibly cringed. That was when Akane and Nabiki arrived in the doorway. The Amazons witnessed Ranma's change into his drastically different female form.
The Matriarch's eyes widened. "Wha-What happened to your curse?"
"It changed when I absorbed a bunch of mana..."
Ranma turned towards Mousse and closed her eyes. Mousse suddenly coughed up water that flowed into Ranma hand, and absorbed. That was when Ranma's back arched and she yelped. White feathered wings sprouted from her back, making her look like an angel.
Cologne completely gawked. "H-How..."
Ranma fluttered her wings a little and frowned. She looked at the water magic within her and found that the wings weren't bonded to her center like the girl curse. She thought about banishing them, but decided she would let herself recover from changing so much recently. With her mana constantly combating her change to 'heal' her, it was painful to change form.
"I discovered a different type of power when I fought with Saffron. He was saturated with it...it was hard to miss if you were sensitive."
Cologne suddenly shut her mouth and dashed to the kitchen. She returned with a kettle and splashed Mousse with it. He was still human. He cried.
"Saotome! Thank you!" He demonstrated the male version of the Amazon glomp.
"Okay, Okay, let GO!"
Mousse quickly let go.
Nabiki and Akane were staring in awe at Ranma's wings.
Cologne attempted to collect herself. "You must be a very powerful mage." I couldn't believe it if he became...a god. But just in case.
Cologne pulled out a gem and closed her eyes. It allowed the user higher sight. She dropped the gem when she saw how much magical power Ranma contained. It wasn't Saffron levels...but it was 10 times the amount of the most powerful mages she'd known in her lifetime.
Ranma frowned at Colognes dumbfounded expression. "What?" She snapped.
"Spit it out!"
Cologne quickly collected herself, her tone taking on respect she hadn't shown to anyone but Prince Herb. "I think you have become a god."
Ranma blinked. And think blinked before. "Ya mean...like Saffron or something?"
Cologne nodded in awe.
Ranma fainted. Luckily, she fell forward. It would have hurt her wings otherwise.
Ranma awoke in a sparse room, laying face-down on a futon. She felt slightly dizzy before it went away. She used her higher senses... and found Nabiki (Sharp Purple, Water), Akane (Rampant Red, fire), Shampoo (Sensual Purple, Wood), Mousse ( Wild Orange, Steel), Cologne (Stark White, Wind). Aura, Element
"How long was I out?" Ranma asked as she sat up Indian style.
"For an about an hour." Nabiki said.
Ranma chuckled. "Guess I'm too late for school."
Akane was strangely quiet, looking at Ranma in silent awe. She sat across from Ranma, against the wall. Nabiki sat close to Ranma's left, where her head once was. She was quiet and thoughtful, basking in feelings Ranma caused in her.
"What happened anyway? I remember talking to you..."
"You fainted, Ranma-sama." That sounded odd from Cologne. She eyed her warily. "I don't faint."
"Ranma..." This time it was Nabiki, "Cologne told you that you were a god, then you passed out."
"A god, Ranma..." Akane said quietly.
"That's what I thought you said..." Ranma felt uncomfortable and fidgeted.
"So, do we have a deal, Old ghoul?"
Cologne didn't choose to answer that, and instead chose to ask another question. "Do...Do you know your element?"
"So...you are a goddess of water..."
"I'm a guy, dammit."
Ranma's outburst didn't phase the Matriarch. "Ranma... you are more powerful in your cursed form right?"
Ranma hesitantly nodded.
"And that is the only form that changed, right?"
"Then I'm pretty sure that is, 'Goddess'."
"Well...There is one last thing to test to see if you're a god."
Cologne slashed her staff diagonally, catching Ranma off guard. Drops of blood flew from Ranma's chest, his shirt cut clean through.
"What'd you do that for!" Ranma screamed. Ranma felt her chest to check how bad the cut was. She didn't feel cut. It didn't hurt except when she was first sliced. She didn't find any wound. "Wha-What?"
"It is as I've figured. You are a god. Much like Saffron, you don't die easily, and even then you may not stay dead. You heal rapidly and probably only an element strong against you would defeat you. Either earth, or very powerful fire. You would probably have to use up all of your energy before being defeated."
"But...how did I defeat Saffron then?"
"You tell me? Were you aware your aura is cold and calm like ice or water?"
Ranma mused that over. She did freeze him after a long battle. Ranma nodded.
Cologne was quiet. "The Element of the Ancient Amazon Goddess who created the pools was water. It is said that she is the source of the magic of the springs. It is said that to defeat the ancient god of the musk, The dragon god Tochi-dono (ground/earth prince), she formed the pools under him. A Musk warrior was sacrificed to form the first Spring of Drowned Man. She locked his form with the last of her magic. With the defeat of their God, the musk retreated off Amazon lands, taking the dragon man with them. From him formed the royal line of the musk."
Cologne regarded Ranma. "As a god, you should be renamed. Ransui?" (Wild Water)
Ranma mulled it over. "Sure, why not?" 'Not that anyone would really call me by that.'
Nabiki sat musing over what the Amazon said. She had done all she's done since Ranma arrived to a future god? Was that why she felt so...attracted to her presence?
Akane was fidgeting. No wonder she couldn't even compare to Ranma...he's a god. He's more powerful and beautiful and a better cooker...Akane felt complete inadequacy around Ranma. Not to mention she felt... repelled by now ever since his change. It wasn't a big deal, but it was annoying.
"So, Kuno was right all along, huh?"
Ranma shot her a dirty look, and to Ranma's surprise, Nabiki gave her a genuine smile. She almost melted. "Nabiki?"
She merely giggled. "So what are you going to do now that you're a god?"
"Well...if I'm going to life even longer than the old goat, I should try to learn everything I can about Martial Arts."
The Amazon Matriarch was musing over this new development. She thought perhaps she should still pursue...her for the tribe. But if Ranma –er Ransui had kids as a male it only his inherent strength would be passed on. As a girl her hair and now wings would be inherited. They would be somewhat like the phoenix with odd eyes. Was that advisable? Plus Ransui was born a male...she would never reproduce as a girl...at least not yet. Perhaps in a few hundred years... She just had to make sure her descendants kept an eye on her.
"I guess in light of this new...development. We have some options never available before. I will nullify your marriage to Shampoo and I will teach you all I know... if you become goddess of the Amazons."
"No, great-grandmother! Shampoo love Ranma!"
Cologne waited for Ranma to think on it.
"What would be required of being your god?"
Cologne suppressed a frown at Ranma using the masculine form. "You will be our ally and protect us, even help us with your magic when you can. Also, since I will teach you all I know, you will be our immortal vessel of Amazon Lore."
Ranma mused on that. "Do I have to come to the village?"
Cologne shook her head. "As our goddess...we really can't control you...but I would beg you to come in a hundred years or so, when you're through with what you are doing here." The Matriarch shot a glance at Akane.
Akane was confused at the look Cologne shot her, but Nabiki caught on. Ranma would outlive them all, being effectively immortal. A hundred years would be nothing, and Cologne being three hundred, understands patience. She sees Akane as being the only obstacle to Ranma going to China.
Ranma looked towards Nabiki. She blinked at her look. She was asking her for advice. She would normally charge...but for some reason the –warmth?—she felt from her prevented her from doing so.
"It actually doesn't sound bad at all Ranma. You still have your freedom mostly. All they are asking is for a goddess to protect them and someone to probably worship. You will still be able to uphold whatever...engagement you want here and go there later. I don't know if you realize what Cologne meant...but you're an immortal. You will live for a long time. Whoever you marry will probably be dead in a hundred years and you can go to the village."
Ranma blinked. 'Immortal? I'm immortal?' Ranma looked at Akane. 'I'll outlive her and everyone...that's a depressing thought.'
"Um...Since Nabiki doesn't think it's bad, I guess I'll be your goddess."
Cologne bowed to Ranma, which made her uneasy. "Thank you Ransui-sama. As agreed, I nullify your marriage to Shampoo. I will begin planing on how to teach you."
Shampoo stood swiftly gaping. "but...you can't do that great-grandmother!"
Cologne looked onto her sympathetically. "Shampoo, child, he never loved you. You know that in your heart, otherwise nullifying the Kiss of Marriage wouldn't shake you so. You know that is your only claim and right to Ranma. If he truly loved you, it wouldn't matter, would it? He would come to you anyway."
Tears began flowing from Shampoo's eyes as the truth from her elder's words rang in her head.
"Jerk!" Shampoo shouted at Ranma, lashing out in her pain.
Cologne held her staff in front of Shampoo. "You should not talk that way to the Goddess, Shampoo."
Shampoo turned her nose up and walked out. Ranma looked hurt and guilty about Shampoo. She suddenly felt a hand on her shoulder. "It's okay Ranma...sometimes people get hurt. You are going to have to learn how to deal with that if you going to be living forever. You did nothing wrong."
Surprisingly it was Nabiki with a sympathetic look foreign to her. Cologne had a neutral expression as she regarded the Tendo daughters. The Akane girl didn't seem to like this new development, likely she felt her status threatened. Cologne doubted they're compatible anyway. Their elements don't get along normally. It is probably why the girl feels so insecure about him. Water defeats fire. She probably feels inferior to him. It doesn't help things that he is better than her in so many things. If the girl just didn't try so hard... Perhaps if she was feeling generous she'd help her. She probably wouldn't hit Ranma as much anymore because she would probably feel meek in the shadow of his elemental power. She probably feels like a fire about to be smothered in his presence and that's no surprise giving its sheer immensity. Ransui's just a fledgling god at the moment...she probably hasn't even reached her full power. Cologne eyed Nabiki. However that girl's element is the same. Ranma's power probably draws her to him like a river to an ocean; she'd never seen that girl act anything but distant in the past.
The Tendo Dojo trio stood at the door way to the Nekohanten.
"Ranma... you aren't going to go out like that are you?" Nabiki asked Ranma.
Nabiki pointed at her wings.
"Eh, heh." Ranma rubbed the back of her head, abashed. She then concentrated and with a small squeal of pain her wings retracted and she shifted back to her birth form.
Nabiki nodded. Ranma smiled. Akane scowled at the display.
"So...should we go to school...or what?"
"Where the hell am I now/"
Ranma sighed as the exited the restaurant
"Ryoga." Ranma greeted.
"Ranma..." Ryoga growled. He was still mad about getting knocked into orbit by Ranma in his rage after the wedding crashed. He had never been so pitifully defeated before. He noticed Akane. "Akane! H-how are you?"
Akane was still scowling at Ranma and Nabiki. "Fine, Ryoga..." She said curtly.
Ryoga caught her expression and tone and turned to Ranma. "Ranma...you made Akane angry!"
"What?!" Ranma shouted confusedly. He was also somewhat irked he didn't feel Ryoga's approach. Ryoga had a rather immense greenish-yellow aura that was hard to miss. No telling with him though, he practically teleports around.
"For making Akane angry, you will die!"
Ryoga reared his umbrella and began attacking Ranma in earnest, damaging the streets and some of the vender's carts in his warpath.
Ranma internally smoldered. He didn't fill like putting up with P-chan at the moment. He thought of the quickest way to get Ryoga off of him. If he got him wet...but Akane was present. Hell, Ranma was pretty sure even with his weaker magic in his male form he could trigger Ryoga's curse. An idea hit Ranma and he poised to move when Ryoga swung his huge umbrella down. Ryoga, thinking Ranma was going to move, didn't hold back anything when his umbrella smashed into Ranma, breaking him like he did concrete. Bones jutted out Ranma at odd angles and he bled as he hit the ground. Ryoga blanched. Nabiki and Akane lost their color. Nabiki shortly regained her calm from her shock first, realizing what Ranma was doing.
"Ranma! No! You were supposed to dodge...I never really meant to kill you...just beat you black and blue!" Ryoga cried. He fell to his knees with his eyes clenched shut, tears falling from his eyes onto Ranma's body.
Then out of no where... "Fucking SHIT that HURT."
'Look at me,' Ryoga thought, 'I'm hearing things.'
"You pack one hell of a wallop. I'm glad I never let you hit me with that umbrella before."
Ryoga opened his eyes in shock. That sounded to real to be his imagination. He looked down and found a living, if bloody, Ranma.
"Ranma! You're alive!" He crushed Ranma to his chest. Then he sputtered as he dropped Ranma in shock, "But h-how?"
Ranma smirked. He stood and brushed himself off. "Well, P-chan," Ryoga was too relieved to get angry, "I'm immortal."
Ryoga blinked. "Immortal?"
"Yeah...I'm a god."
Ryoga blinked again, then busted out laughing. "Y-You? A god! BWAHAHAHAA!"
Ranma scowled. "I'll show you..." he growled.
Ranma cringed as he sprouted wings and shifted form. Ryoga's laughter shortly died down and he took in Ranma's appearance. "R-Ranma? Is that you?"
"Of course it is, P-Chan," Ranma said in a deeper, maturer female voice that sounded oddly like listening to someone speaking underwater.
Ryoga looked into Ranma's eyes and stared at the solid blue, pupil-less eyes before tearing his gaze away. "What the hell?"
"My cursed side changed when I tapped into a power that I saw Saffron use."
"S-Saffron?" Ryoga gulped in memory.
Ranma checked her higher senses...she was weaker from healing. She should replenish the energy she lost. She absently noticed Ryoga's element...Earth. Ranma felt the air and found her type of mana floating around sparsely. She sighed, it would have to do. She didn't want to get caught napping without anything to heal. She'd barely be able to heal from another death blow like that again. Saffron must have been packing some mana. She concentrated, drawing in water mana from around her. The group watched in awe as water seemed to collect in droplets around Ranma and enter flow into her. This went on for a minute before what was left in the air fell to the ground around her. She sighed in ecstasy from the new energy pulsing from her.
Ryoga gawked at her. "What are you?"
Ranma rolled her eyes, even though you really couldn't tell to much due to the solid color. "I'm a god, pig boy. Ransui – new god of the Amazons."
"Ran..Sui? Wild Water...?"
"Ya know I'm actually pretty powerful...at least when it comes to water magic. And you, dear pig, have some of it." Ranma smiled as he figured curing Ryoga's curse would rid the boy of one reason to hate and attack him randomly – not that he minded it every now and then. But if he did it like last time...She shuddered at the thought of gaining hooves or something. She would figure out a different way.
Ryoga's eyes widened as he realized what Ranma meant. "You can cure curses?"
Ranma smile knowingly. Then Ryoga frowned. "Then why do you still turn into a girl?"
It was Ranma's turn to frown. "Because the stupid magic bound to me when I awakened mine."
Ryoga looked at him skeptically.
"So...you want to talk in private?" Ranma tilted his head towards Akane. Ryoga caught on.
Ranma took a hold of Ryoga's arm and led him towards the alley. "'Scuse us for a moment."
Nabiki almost pouted when Ranma left her presence and gasped as she hit passed out. This went unnoticed by the to rivals. Akane's eyes widened and she went over to Nabiki. "Nabiki? Nabiki!"
"Stand there." Ranma directed. Ryoga almost felt giddy...a foreign emotion for the eternally lost boy.
Ranma tiled her head thoughtfully. She couldn't remove the curse entirely without some affect to her...at least she hasn't figured out a way yet and she doesn't want to risk it. After a minute she decided to change the temperature for the curse. She would change the trigger, but her specialty was water...she hadn't messed with other elements yet. She would make it freezing, so he couldn't ever change...unless perhaps ice touched him or something. Little did Ranma know would Ryoga gain problems later with people spilling drinks with ice on him, and snow and sleet hitting him. It was good winter all ready passed at least.
"Okay Ryoga...I can't remove the curse entirely."
Ryoga dropped into despair.
"...But I can pretty much keep you from changing. I can't remove your curse because, sorry, I don't want to have any pig features." Ranma shuddered.
Ryoga raised an eyebrow. "Whaddya mean, 'pig features'"
"Well...see the wings? That's from Mousse. Luckily for me, I find wings pretty cool." Ranma realized she hadn't even tried them out yet. Maybe that was what she would spend the rest of the day doing.
"So what are you going to do?"
"Change the temperature of your curse to freezing."
Ryoga thought over that then grinned huge. "I'll never see the pig again!"
Ranma felt warm inside from the elated Ryoga. She felt good doing something for the pitiful boy.
"Okay...here I go..." Ranma raised her hands, her palm facing Ryoga. Ryoga glowed an odd blue before it disappeared. "There."
Ryoga couldn't wait to see if he was cured. He looked around madly for water. He was about to exit the alleyway when Ranma stopped him.
"Hey...you want Akane to see you change?"
Ryoga vigorously shook his head no.
"So let me see if I can get you something wet..." Ranma concentrated and gathered a ball of water in his hand, taking the humidity out of the air. She smiled as it formed. "Here." She tossed it haphazardly on Ryoga and he...didn't change. Suddenly Ranma was crushed in a back breaking hug as tears trailed down Ryoga's face.
"This is the happiest day of my life!"
Ranma awkwardly patted Ryoga on the back before asking, "Couldja put me down now?"
Ryoga blushed shamefully before dropping her. "Sorry..it's just...I'm so happy!"
Ranma blinked at Ryoga's aura actually became a grass green instead of a sickly green. 'I don't think he'll be able to do a shi-shi hokoudan anytime soon..."
"Now I'll be on my way..." Without further adieu, Ranma walked out of the alley by the Nekohanten. She came to sight of...
"Ranma! Something wrong with Nabiki...she won't wake up!" The panic in Akane's voice snapped her to. She used her senses to scan Nabiki. There was nothing physically wrong...she scanned some more. Her aura was weak and...her mana gone!
"Oh god!" What to do, What to do!?
Ranma snapped her fingers as she got an idea and she knelt beside Nabiki. She placed her hand on Nabiki's abdomen.
"What are you doing you pervert!" Akane snapped. Ranma glared at her, her eerie eyes quickly shutting her up.
Ranma concentrated and pushed some of her mana into her. She had probably accidentally took it when she pulled it from all around her. Nabiki was too close and of the same element. Everyone else nearby was a different element. After a few moments Nabiki's eyes opened.
"What happened to me?" She asked somewhat groggily. Akane whispered, "Thank God."
Ranma looked guilty. "I'm so sorry Nabiki...it's my fault."
"What did you do?" She asked as she sat up.
"You were too close and I wasn't careful about were I was drawing from. I think I pulled away your mana."
"Mana? I have mana?"
Ranma nodded. "Yeah...everyone does. Just like ki."
Nabiki absorbed this and nodded. "But then why didn't Akane or Ryoga pass out...?"
"Because they have a different type. You are water. Akane's fire and Ryoga's earth. Those aren't exactly my type."
Nabiki blinked. So that's why she felt so...attracted to him. In fact she felt even more so now. "Well...thanks."
"So what do we do now?" Akane asked.
"I don't know what yall are going to do...but I'm going to test out these wings."
Ranma gave a few light flaps and she almost felt like she was about to lift off the ground. It came to her almost naturally...probably part of the curse. That would explain how Ryoga could run so well on four legs and how Mousse can fly so easily. She flapped her wings and flew up into the sky. Akane and Nabiki craned their necks to watch. Nabiki stood. "Wow...imagine flying. It must be exhilarating. I wonder if she can carry passengers?"
"Yeah..." Akane said in awe. The watched as Ranma flew out of view because of the buildings.
Suddenly Nabiki gasped and swooned. Akane heard the gasp and caught Nabiki swooning. "What's wrong?"
"I don't know...I suddenly started feeling weak..."
"We should get you to doctor tofu...maybe he can tell us what's wrong."
Nabiki shook her head. "Why don't you just ask the Old woman?"
"Because she'd probably ask something for it..."
Nabiki shook her head again. "She did all that to get Ranma. Plus I'm sure she doesn't want me to die...I am a friend of her 'goddess'."
Akane's mouth abruptly shut. She reluctantly helped Nabiki in.
"Cologne-san! We need your help!"
The old ghoul hopped from the kitchen, quickly noticing Nabiki's state. "What's wrong?"
"Well...Ranma just said he accidentally stole Nabiki's mana or something like that and then he touched her and she was better. Now after he's taken off to test out his wings Nabiki became weak again. Can you do something?"
The elder rubbed her chin. "Well let me see what's wrong."
She did a scan of her aura and found nothing. She thought that odd. Then again the girl mentioned mana...even though Cologne wasn't entirely sure of its significance and use in other that it fueled magic. She pulled her gem, holding it in her grasp. The eye of sight beyond sight. Using it she felt Nabiki's mana...it was there, even more than an ordinary person's. Ransui must have put too much back into her. She was about to make her diagnosis when she caught something. There were threads leading somewhere upward and away from the Cafe. They looked much like the threads someone has to their own ki enhanced objects or attacks until they release it or it disperses. If she made an educated guess she was linked to Ransui now. She was so new to her powers it was no surprise she did something like this. She probably used her own supply of mana to replace Nabiki's. And since it hasn't dispersed or finished it's use...it was still linked to Ransui. The goddess seemed to already be screwing up, but she was just a fledgling. Apparently she was stretching the link too far, the farther away, the more she pulled out of Nabiki like unrolling a spook of thread.
She sighed and returned the gem to her robes. "It looks like Ranma's linked to her now. When he replaced her mana, there was a bond form."
Akane and the weak Nabiki mused over this. "So what does that mean?"
Cologne raised an eyebrow. "Really? It means that the farther away from Ranma you are, the weaker you become."
Nabiki sighed. At least Ranma made her feel all warm and safe inside around her. "We should go to the dojo and meet him there to tell him. Maybe he can fix it?" Right now it sounded like she would have to spend the rest of her life near him. Nabiki snorted at that thought. Maybe they could marry instead and carry on the school?
Akane's mouth flapped like a fish before she closed it. Her brow furrowed slightly, angry. "Yeah." She almost spat, "Let's."
Cologne shook her old head. 'That Tendo girl will never learn...'
Akane and Nabiki slowly made their way home. Nabiki felt weak, so they couldn't make a brisk pace. They arrived half an hour later.
"We're home!" Akane shouted.
"Welcome home!" Kasumi called and approached the pair at the doorway. "Oh my...shouldn't you be in school?"
Nabiki answered, "A lot of things happened. Shampoo stopped by and Ranma tried to make a deal to get rid of Shampoo's curse if she stopped trying to marry him. We found out apparently, Ranma's now a god... or rather," Nabiki snickered, "goddess."
Nabiki nodded. "Apparently Ranma is very powerful...he managed to remove Mousses curse with a side benifit...you'll see when Ranma gets here. We need to talk to him."
"Well... I'll make some tea and snacks while we wait for him."
Kasumi smiled, and went down the hall to the kitchen. Akane and Nabiki went into the den and sat down. Nabiki rested her head on the table. "Argh...I feel like sludge."
Akane shook her head. That idiot Ranma. This is all his fault.
"Akane, what are you doing home so early?"
"Some stuff came up with Ranma, as usual, and by the time it was done...we figure it's too late to go to school. We'll pick up what we missed tomorrow. We have to talk to Ranma. Hopefully he'll be back soon."
Nabiki yawned and sat up. "I'm starting to feel better..."
"Really? Maybe Cologne didn't know what she was talking about," Akane said irately.
"Or rather Ranma's nearby?" Nabiki proposed. Akane suppressed as scowl.
Suddenly a hoot cut through the air. "Woo-hoo! That was a hoot!" Ranma said as she landed in the back yard near the porch. Genma and Soun gawked from their positions by the shogi board.
"Ranma?" Nabiki called.
"Yep.. the one and only."
"Come here, we gotta talk to you about something."
Genma finally closed his gaping maw. "What happened to you boy?!"
"Well...when I cured Mousses curse, it merged with me. I probably won't do that again...unless I get something cool from it. I'd never cure Pantyhose Tarou's curse or something..." Ranma shuddered.
"What about your father boy!?"
Ranma snorted. "As if I'd wanna look like a furry she-panda. Even if I could cure your curse without side effects I wouldn't cure your lazy ass."
Ranma glared at her father with her solid blue eyes. "What are you gonna do about it?"
Genma scowled but didn't press further.
"Besides, even if you could hurt me, I wouldn't stay hurt. I'm a 'god' now."
Genma and Soun blinked. "A- A god?"
Ranma nodded with a sadistic grin. "Yep...Cologne verified it. I'm a certified demi-god like Saffron."
Nabiki smirked, "Yeah, Ransui, goddess of the Amazons."
Ranma scowled at Nabiki.
"What do you mean god?" Soun asked.
"Well, I have magic power beyond the most powerful mages and I can sense everything, living or not, within a wide range." Ranma tilted his head thoughtfully, "I could even sense you coming in the umisenken, pops. You may mask you ki and visibility, but I can still feel your body." Ranma frowned. "More than I like to."
Nabiki quirked an eyebrow as Ranma sat down at the table, folding her wings. "What do you mean by that?"
"Well, I can feel everything meaning regardless is something is between me and you I can still 'see' you."
"What do you..." Nabiki actually blushed. "Like what you see Saotome?" Nabiki leaned back, arching her back sensually. Ranma blushed in response. Nabiki chuckled at him.
Akane watched the exchange, confused. "What do you mean Nabiki?" Realization was just tingling in the front of her head...
"What he means, dear sister, is that he can see through walls, doors, objects, and...clothes."
Akane blinked. Then she blinked some more. Suddenly she shrieked in anger, "Ranma! You pervert!"
Akane pulled out ye ol' mallet and smashed Ranma. The moment it disappeared back into subspace Ranma had already recovered. She didn't even rub her head. There was no pain except when it hit.
"Stupid tomboy! Like I'd want to see you anyway! It's not like I can help it."
Akane growled and reached for your mallet.
"I don't know why you even bother. It doesn't even really hurt. It hasn't hurt much in a while. Ryoga hits me harder than you. Besides, what little you manage to hurt me is gone the moment you pull that hammer off my head."
Akane frowned, waving her mallet menacingly before dismissing it. She turned her nose up and harrumphed. She stalked off to her room.
"Stupid tomboy," Ranma muttered.
Nabiki smirked. "Maybe I should charge you for the free show."
Ranma frowned at her. "Oh.. I'm kidding. However I do expect a few showing..." She let her words hang.
Ranma blushed. "No way!"
Kasumi came in with cookies and tea. " Oh my. Hello Ranma-kun! What nice wings you have."
"Thank you, Kasumi. I kinda like them myself. Too bad I only have them as a girl."
"So Ranma who do you think looks better, me or Kasumi?"
Kasumi blushed at the question. "Oh my..."
"Nabiki," Ranma growled...
"Alright, Alright," Nabiki relented, "I won't make you answer that. I was curious. You do have what other people dream of... X-ray vision."
Kasumi blinked as she sat down the tray. "You have X-ray vision, Ranma-kun? So you can see through walls and other things?"
"Yeah, Kasumi. Don't forget clothes."
Kasumi blinked and looked down at herself. "Oh my." She flushed. Nabiki got a good laugh out of her reaction. "I don't think that's proper..."
"Anyway..." Nabiki interrupted, becoming all business, "When you left me to goof off, I fell weak."
Concern marred Ranma's brow. "You okay Nabiki? I'm sure I did it right..."
Nabiki smile slightly at Ranma's concern. "Actually," she began, "Cologne said you were linked to me. Just like threads in your ki attacks or something like that..."
"What?" Ranma took a deep look at Nabiki. Sure enough...
"Yeah, kinda my thoughts too."
"I have to be around you or I fall weak apparently. We should test the distance we can be apart...unless you can fix it."
Ranma frowned and then shook her head exasperatedly. "No...I don't know entirely what I'm doing, and it's your life I'm messing with. I don't want to risk it."
Nabiki smiled and shook her head. "Well then...see how far we can be apart then. Hopefully this will wear off sometime soon."
Ranma nodded and walked towards the porch watching Nabiki. When she was ten feet away, Nabiki felt the warmth leave her. She nodded at Ranma to continue. He went out into the yard, and a few feet from the porch, Nabiki started to feel it.
"I feel it now Ranma. I think that's as far as you can go. About 15 feet." Ranma frowned and so did Nabiki. This was going to cause some problems.
Ranma came back in and they sat in silence for a while and ate Kasumi's cookies. Nabiki broke it. "Well...it'll be a while before dinner's ready...wanna see if you can carry someone with those wings? We can stop by the school to pick up our work."
Ranma whined, "I don't want to go to school..."
"Ranma...you may not care about your grades, but I do. I wouldn't mind getting a head start on my work by picking it up after school today."
"Okay, Okay," Ranma relented. She stood and started towards the porch. "Well...come on."
Nabiki suppressed the urge to bubbly prance over to Ranma in her excitement. She managed to come of only as eager. Ranma suddenly scooped her up and she squealed. "Hold on." Nabiki wrapped her arms around her neck. She felt even more comforted in Ranma's arms than when he was just nearby.
With that Ranma took a short jog and a huge leap, soaring like a glider before gaining altitude.
An exhausted Ranma and an hour later, A new goddess landed on the school's roof with Nabiki.
"There. Go in and get your stuff and come back. I'll wait."
Nabiki started towards the door and began to feel weak. "Ranma...I can't be more than fifteen feet away from you..."
Ranma frowned. "Okay then...but I can't go inside like this."
Ranma triggered her curse and moaned in pain, transforming back to his natural body. "There," he gasped.
Nabiki arched an eyebrow. "Why is that so painful?"
Ranma walked up to her side, and they entered the school from the door on the roof. "Because my mana constantly tries to 'heal' me while my curse constantly tries to reform me. It conflicts and makes the transformation kinda slow and painful." Ranma paused. "Just because I don't stay hurt, doesn't mean I don't feel pain."
They went to Nabiki's classroom and picked up her papers left there. She asked a friend – more like an associate actually – for the notes needed from class. Ranma stood outside the classroom, still being within the 15 foot radius. 15 minutes later they were on the roof. Ranma painfully transformed and scooped Nabiki back into her arms, streamlining for the dojo. The short rest she got from flying when they stopped at the school did her wonders. She discovered her mana worked on recovering her fatigue too.
They landed in the back yard and Ranma folded her wings.
"Let's go to my room so I can do my work."
Ranma frowned. "But that's so boring."
Nabiki rolled her eyes and got an idea. She teased Ranma, "Well, Ranma... why don't you just stare at my body while I do it. After all, it doesn't matter that I'm wearing them."
Ranma blushed. "Nabiki!"
She giggled and grabbed her arm, taking her to her room.