" " are speaking
' ' are quotes
{ } are thoughts
[ ] are panda sign
* * are sounds

Everybody was in the sitting room. M. Tendo had his three daughters
on his right and two men on his left, each group facing the other.

"I present you once more... my best friend..." started Soun Tendo.

"Genma Saotome." said the man dressed in a dirty white gi. He waved
to the young boy sitting beside him. "This is my son..."

"...Ranma." finished the boy, dressed in a pale blue, sleeveless
chinese shirt, with matching black trousers, black combat shoes and
red combat bracers.

He and Akane looked at each other, the former with a questioning look
and the later more suspicious.

"It's a joke, right?" interjected Nabiki.

"You are... the girl from back then?" asked Kasumi, completely lost.

"Hum. How to start?" Genma wondered. "I know! Hyah!!" He throwed his
son into the koi pond, located in the middle of the Tendo garden.

"Hey!!" Ranma shouted while airborne. "A...Argh!.... Aaaaargh!!" he
screamed, just before reaching the water with a loud *SPLASH*

For a while, bubbles were noisily showing on the water. He then broke
the surface of the water, holding his head with both hands in obvious

"Huh... Nyaah!... Ahh... Ahh... AAARGH!!" His pained screams started

For a second that seemed to never end, he bent himself. His head
looked like it splitted in two, then all the wooden studs of his
chinese shirt bursted at once. A naked mass of bare skinned flesh, or
perhaps a body, was ejected from his torso, splashed in the water and
vanished into the pond.

"Ahh... Ahh... Pff..." He tried to get his breath back, taking
support on his knees, his head dangling. "It stopped. So much
pain..." He raised his head, sending a questioning glare at his
father and the Tendos.

"What happened?" the only response he got was a stupefied look. He
finally registered the information his body was sending to him and he
looked down his bare torso... definitely male. "I... I don't change
into a girl? I... I'm cured?" he asked to nobody when suddenly...

*BLOOSH* A young girl with fiery hair emerged a few feet from him.

"Ouch..." she groaned. "It hurts!" She looked quickly around
her. "Where... Where am I?" she took a step back... then
another... and she bumped into Ranma.

She gently turned toward him and he got the confirmation he feared :
it was his female self. The shock keept him from making any sensible
thought, like it might have been the case for his father and the
Tendos, none of them having told a word yet, their brains trying to
compute the facts.

She slowly pointed a trembling finger at Ranma while cautiously
backing away. "You... you are... imposs... I..." Like all others
present, all rational thinking seemed to have left her. Nonetheless,
the fact that she can identify Ranma was unmistakable.

"Who... are you?" Ranma managed to ask intelligibly.

"Who I am?" she asked.

She was answered by the shocked silence of her observers.

"I ... I ..." she stammered, as surprise dawns upon her face, then
it changed to a look of reflection.

Her observers did not bear her any ill will, but their shocked
silence was somewhat cruel.

"I ... I ..." she stammered again as her face began to show panic.

Seeing her emotional state, Ranma attempted the question that was
consuming him : "Are you me?"

"WHAT?" If the result attained was not the one looked for, the
question had the benefits to have apparently calmed her. "If I'm you?
You are just before me, how can I be you?" she answered him like as
though he asked a stupid question.

Her declaration, in addition to relaxing Ranma a little, restarted
the thinking machine that was Nabiki's brain.

"You're not Ranma?" Nabiki asked while nearing the pond.

"Ranma? Ranma... RANMA! YES! It's your name!" she shouted, pointing
her finger toward him again. "I know you! Ranma Saotome, heir to the
Saotome school of Anything Goes martial arts!"

"Y...yeah. That's me"

"If you are not him, then who are you?" asked Nabiki a second time.

The redhead turns toward Nabiki and stares at her silently. "I... I
don't know!" she concedes. "I see things, memories, but they are so
foreign to me... the more I seek, the more I find events linked to
the life of... of Ranma... but I cannot remember my name... my
house... my family..."

Slowly, her posture changed, as she fell into depression.

"I don't know why... but I know that all these memories are Ranma's
and not mines."

"Ranma..." Nabiki said, cutting into the girl's monologue, "give her
your shirt." "Hu? oh..." he removed it and gave it to his female

"Thanks..." she answered him while putting the shirt on, suddenly
aware of her nudity.

"So, if I assume, you don't know who you are, but you are sure of not
being Ranma, even if you have the same memory as him?" Nabiki
analyzed while speaking, her hands on her hips.

The girl nodded, her morale starting to sink even further.

"Hmm... We may not be able to resolve this tonight." Nabiki looked at
the two, still waist deep in the water. "Say, you can exit the pond
now. You'll catch a cold if you don't."

They suddenly realized that, yup, they had been standing in the water
all the while they were chatting.

"Hum, if you're not Ranma, and you don't remember your name, you'll
have to choose a new one until you get your own memories back. Any
ideas?" Nabiki asked.

Ranma-chan stopped immediately where she stood, then looked back to
Ranma-kun. "Ranma... it's strange! I get the
impression that... that..." the tries to remember something. "Is
there not a girl name starting like Ranma?"

"Let me see... Ranma? Ran... Ran... There : Ranko... Wild child,
seems fitting as a female name, seeing that Ranma means Wild horse."
Declared Nabiki.

"Ranko? I seem to have heard it before, somewhere..." said 'Ranko'.

"It doesn't ring a bell for me..." Ranma said, cutting the girl off.

"Yes? Maybe your memories are already coming back..." Nabiki paused a
little, then "I think that this name can help you to quicken the
process, even maybe get some indications..."

"Ranko... yes, after all, it's just a name. Any name will do the

"I will have to do some researches... hey, it'll be a real
challenge..." Nabiki sing-sang while returning to the house, followed
by the other two. "How do you know that you are not Ranma, by the
way? If you have the same memories as him, even if it seems strange,
you should have believed that you were him, no?"

"Well, the memories I have might be mine, but there is this feeling
that tells me they aren't. I dunno... but then my memories are so
clear, so well ordered... it ain't normal! Nobody can recall stuff
that way. It's almost like they were implanted or somethin'. I
remember all this stuff too well. That's why I think these ain't my
memories." answered back Ranko.

The three came back into the house and Nabiki sat back at her place,
thinking. When Ranko were going to sit too, Ranma put a hand on her

"Ran...ko? Can you come with me, I want to try something."

"Hu... ok!" She followed him and they exit the room.

"What... the... hell... happened?" Akane asked her sister.

"I don't know for sure. But I think our guests just started to
surprise us." declare Nabiki, half-anxious for the problems to come,
half-delighted for the spice that the Saotome family would bring into
her life.


Ranma took Ranko to the room where he and his father had put their
belongings. He got his bag and lead the way through the Tendo

"Here we are!" he said, entering in a room.

"This is the bathroom? What do you want to do here?" she asked.

"First, I wanna try the curse to see if I'm cured for good or not.
Then try to see if you are cured too. Lastly, just dry myself and
change my wet clothes."

"Okay..." She walked toward the furo, still full of hot water. "You
changed back with hot water, and we stayed into the pond's cold water
long enough to know that it doesn't change us. My case will be
quickly resolved." She got in the furo et immerged herself in the hot
water, warming her body from the pond water's coldness. "I think
that's clear. Your two forms seem to be really separated from each
other." She exited the water, took a towel and started to dry her

"That's... that's... THAT'S GREAT! I get rid of this curse... huu..."
He stopped his euphoria to look at his female double. "If I don't
change into a girl..."

"I don't change into a boy... where is the problem?"

"The problem? you are locked in my cursed body without memories... so
how can you know if you are a guy or a girl?"

"Oh! That... That's right... I didn't think of it." she said as she
stopped drying herself. She thought for a moment, then started back
to dry her hair. "I can't remember. That's not important."

"How's that 'that's not important'? If you are a girl in a girl body,
okay, but what if you're a guy?"

"If I'm a guy, then I'll know easily. I'll just have to look what's
the more attractive to me : guys or girls. For now, there is a more
pressing problem than that."

"Say what?" he asked with a challenging tone.

"Well, look at this, don't have anything more than this body, and it
was yours less that an hour ago..." She dropped the now wet towel and
took the shirt off. "I can't see myself taking a walk like this..."
she told him, showing off her nudity.

"Hu..." He turned backward to stop looking at her. "Yeah..." He went
his back and took out some clothes. "There should be... yes..." he
gets his clothes ready, and continued to search on the bag. "I think
that... eh, eh, eh, your problem is solved..." he said, giving her a
second pair of pants and a shirt similar to his, if not for the color
which is red. "I like the blues one better, they bring my eyes out
more." He added with a mischievous smile.

"You are lending them to me? thanks..." She quickly finished to dry
up and put her new clothes on, copying Ranma. "Say, you wouldn't have
a small ribbon or a string for my hair? I want to fasten them."

"You're gonna make a pigtail too?"

"Nah, I was thinking of your old ponytail, before Jusenkyo..."

"Let me look... Yes, I still got the one I used back then. Here." He
gave her a little black ribbon.

"Perfect!" She fastened her hair. "You already looked at your
reflection in a mirror? While a girl I mean." she said as she looked
at theirs images on the great mirror on the bathroom wall. "Look at
us... One might think that we are twins... TWINS?! excellent!!"

"Hu? What?'

"Look, I haven't anywhere to live, so before my memories come back,
if I even get some before this splitting, I might as well live
here... as your twin sister, no?"

"EEHH? My sister? But..."

"The only life I know, it's yours. If we were really twins, then your
father would have to take me on the training trip too. That will
explain why I'm a tomboy if I'm really a guy too...

"Yeah... that can work but..."

"I can't lose anything by trying because, precisely, I have nothing!"

"That's true."

"Now that we are refreshed, let's get back there, I have a request to


In the sitting room, everybody got their spirits back.

Genma and Soun were in a corner of the room, making plans, while the
three Tendo sisters were trying to find a mean to cure Ranko's

"Yes... doctor Tofu might be able to do something for her." Kasumi

"Akane, you'll take her to Tofu's clinic after classes tomorrow."

"Huh, okay, but why me?" asked Akane.

"I'll have some work to do to if she can't be cured... build her a
new identity, look for some clues of her past... and Kasumi can't do
it either, for the rather obvious reason." Nabiki answered.

"It's true that amnesic people can need a lot of time before being
able to be cured..." said Kasumi, totally missing Nabiki's comment.

"If she can be cured someday." finished Nabiki, inducing a look of
full horror from her sisters. "I prefer to be far-sighted. Ranma and
his father will live here for some time with this engagement
affair... we cannot properly throw her out of the house." she added
to explain herself.

"Oh my! No... of course not." answered Kasumi.

"Stop! Here they are..." noticed Akane just before Ranma and Ranko
got in the room.

"We are back!" declared a happy Ranko. Ranma followed her, stopping
the chat between M. Tendo and his father, the two began to cast
speculative glances at Ranma.

"What have you done this time?" Ranma asked his father, not liking it
at all when Genma gave him this sort of look.

"Son..." started Genma just before being cut off.

"Ranma..." Soun put a hand on Ranma's shoulder. He then placed
himself behind Ranma, making the two of them face the Tendo girls.
"Kasumi, age 19... Nabiki, 17... and Akane, 16. Choose one and
she'll be your fiancee." Explains Soun.

"Congratulation, Akane!" Nabiki hurried to say, then she whisperd
"Let's relieve ourselves from this problem so we can focus our
efforts on Ranko!"

"Father won't stop until one of us is chosen." Kasumi whispered back.

"But... but..." protested Akane vainly.

"Please!" her two sisters begged her.


"Good! So it's settled! Akane shall be Ranma's fiancee. I'm proud of
you, my daughter!" Soun announced dramatically, crying tears of

"Excuse me..." Ranma extricated himself from Soun and walked toward
his father. "Pop! Me and... Ranko have a request for you..."

"What is it, son?" Genma asked. "You are awfully polite all of

"M. Saotome, my amnesia, added to the body I have for now on and
Ranma's memories I got into my head... all of this compels me to ask
you this : until my own memories come back to me, do you accept me as
your own daughter, Ranma's twin sister, that followed you and Ranma
all along the training journey?" she asked, bowing. "I beg you!" she
added, bowing a little lower.

"hmm..." Genma took some time to think about it. "Your request is
rather surprising..."

"Mr. Saotome, I think this is a very good idea." Nabiki interjected.
"I was about to ask her to become a Tendo, but it makes better sense
for her to become a Saotome, given that she shares all of Ranma's
memories. Not to mention her looks. Almost anyone who sees them
together will automatically assume they are brother and sister,
perhaps even think they are twins."

"But... I don't know if..." Genma tried to plea.

"Saotome, my friend, I think that our children are right about this."
Added Soun.

"Anyhow, if he doesn't agree, I'll refuse to become Ranma's fiancee!"
declared Akane, crossing her arms over her chest in a challenging

"Akane... Nabiki... thank you all, that's very kind of you." Said
Ranko, tears in her eyes.

"So, Pop! What's you choice? Methinks that Akane ain't gonna back
off, eh?" Ranma said to his father.

"I... I..." Genma stammered.

"Saotome!!!" threatened Soun.

"Okay! I accept!" He finally agreed.

"Ranko... welcome to the Saotome family!" Ranma congratulated her. He
then turned toward the Tendo. "Thanks to you all... that was very
nice of you."

"Good! I have work waiting for me... I need to create her
identification, we all have school tomorrow after all, haven't we?"
Nabiki said while sitting up, smiling evilly. She then went upstairs
and into her bedroom.

"School?" Ranma asked.

"Yes, son, we are going to stay here some time and..." Genma started.

"...And we need some mental training to complete our physical one."
Ranko recited from her memories. "Well, you did accept my request, so
from now on, you are my Pop. And you need to get used to the fact
that I was actually there all along the training trip, because I can
remember it entirely."

"I see that!" Genma admited.

"Hey, by the way... what do you think of my clothes?" Ranko asked
"Fitting my new identity, no?"

"Ranko!" her father cut her again. "You say you recall all my son's
life like it was yours... so you must be at his exact level in
martial arts."

"Logically, yes." She answered.

"Ranma, Ranko, in the dojo... you two are going to spar a little to
check this." Genma ordered them.

"But, Pop, you said yourself to never hit a woman!" Ranma shouted

"You don't need to strike her hard to test her..." retorted the


In the dojo.
The twins were facing each other, in loose fighting stances.

"Begin!" declared Genma, sitting near the wall, with all the Tendo
family around him.

"Since you don't want to hit me, I'll start the match." Announced
Ranko just before dashing forward.

"Come!" Ranma shouted back while shifting his stance to a defensive

She started with a rain of punches of impressive speed, all blocked
by Ranma, whose arms are moving as quickly as hers. She then tried
some killer kick combos that Ranma deflects easily. She backed off a
few feet, then charged him with a jump.

"Big mistake!" retorted Ranma, launching into the air himself.

They met in mid-air, each kicking the other, but Ranko succeeded in
passing over Ranma's leg with the help of her arms and hit her twin
on the shoulder.

"Urgh!" He groaned when he lands on the floor.

"I'm not stupid, I know that being a girl I'm shorter than you...
however, the warming up was cool. Shall we go on?"

"Hehehe! I like this! It's been a long time since I've had a real
challenge..." Ranma answered her.

Only Genma was not surprised by the level of skill shown.

"Saotome, your son is very talented." Soun admited to his friend.

"That... that... He really went easy on me." Akane noticed, her
hatred starting to boil.

While the two fighters resume their fight, Genma analyzed their
strong and weak points, visibly different. After several minutes of
hard sparring, he called it off.

"Okay! Stop it you two and come here." Genma said while sitting up.

Reluctantly, they came to a stop and walked to their father.

"Ranko, I'm pleased, very pleased... you are worthy of your name. But
you Ranma, I'm not happy about you. How do you expect me to train you
seriously if you hide your real level?" he questioned Ranma.

"You taught me yourself to always keep an ace up the sleeve, if I can
recall you." Ranma shot back.

"In any case, our styles are different... I use the same moves as
but not in the same way." Ranko noticed.

"Your strengths are not the same. I trained Ranma to be good at
everything, but the curse had modified his body : Ranko is faster,
lither and seems to bear more pain, but she is weaker in both
strength and resistance, and her limbs are shorter. All in all, you
two are on an equal level." Explained Genma. "I'm pleased, I have the
data I needed, I can plan a new training regimen for Ranko. She'd
best work on her advantages than trying to fill the gaps between her
and Ranma in strength and constitution."

*tap* *tap* Akane got Ranma's attention by tapping him on the

"Eh... yes, Akane?"

"Grr... when you got here, we sparred. You beat me easily when
holding back! You know how humiliating that can be?"

"Hey! You asked to spar 'just for fun', didn't you? I never use more
skill than necessary. If I had fought all out, you'd be in the
hospital, or worse." He defended himself.

"Akane! I'm sorry, but he's right!" added Ranko. "I can recall the
sparring match as though I did it myself, and I know I'd have done
same. You need to understand that the stronger you are, the more you
need to stay aware of yourself."

"That's not what'll make me feel better!" Akane hurled back.

"That's right! But for you to feel better, you'd need to train harder
than you currently are... Hey, maybe you can train with us? What do
you think?" Ranko asked, hoping to end this problem.

"Sure!" added Ranma. "We can't train correctly being three, we need
to be in pairs."

"Akane! It's a great chance for you! You can learn lots of things
that I don't know. They traveled a lot after all." Soun exclaimed,
eyes in tears.

"What to you have to lose, anyhow?" Ranko asked the younger Tendo.
"you can't know before you've tried!"

Akane glared at her, looking divided between trust and anger.

"You asked Ranma, believing he was a girl, to be friends... will you
take your words back now?" Ranko continued. "Akane, let's be
friends..." she finished with the same small smile that Akane had
earlier, when saying the exact same words.

"I... okay!" Akane answered.

"Great!" shouted Ranko. "We haven't had friends for a long time, have
we, Ranma? When traveling, we didn't stay in the same place long
enough to make friends."

"Our journey is not complete yet, boy... hmm, girl!" Genma told her.
"This situation will sure need some time before I can adjust.

"Pop, you'll need to plan a training regime for Akane now, too..."
Ranma told Genma. "She has some major power in her punches and she
could do lots of damage... if only she could connect first."

Akane glared angrily at Ranma. "Grrr..."

"Ranma, not everyone is as fast as you... and you were a girl at the
time too, quicker than you are now. She didn't stand a chance, but to
say she's bad.... you see what I mean?" Ranko asked her twin.

"Hey! I didn't say that!" he protested.

"Not really, but the way you said it implied that she was bad, in
comparison with you. Well, one can't keep a normal life and train
like us. But she'll get better now!" the redhead explained.

"Sure... training with us, you'll get better in a way you don't even
hope to conceive. After all, I'm the best!" Ranma said to Akane, ego
full out.

"Ranma... WE are the best. We ended the test with a draw, and I know
that you and me were fighting nearly all out!" Ranko shot him.

"Humpf!" Akane growled, turning away from the twins.

"Hey! Don't tell me that you are still angry for the bathroom
accident..?" Ranma asked her, seeing her angry.

"Huh?" apparently, she had forgotten said accident, and to recall her
of it didn't seem like that good an idea, seeing her changing her
posture. "PERVERT!!" she screamed.

"Why this 'pervert'? You were the one to walk in on me, and I put the
occupied sign up!" he retorted.

"How was I supposed to know that MY bathroom was occupied by a 'BOY',
when the only man in the house I knew of was my father? The only one
I was expecting to see was a girl!"

"I was naked as well anyhow. So I don't see your problem." He said
while turning his back to her, his hands crossed behind his head.

"That's not the same! Maniac!" she shouted.

The two fathers laugh together at the quarrel.

"They are the couple of the year!" Soun said to Genma.

"HEY!" interjected Ranko. "Am I the only one sane here? You don't
find yourselves stupid to shout at each other like that?" she asked
the engaged couple.

The quarrel ceased instantaneously.

"Good, that's better... If I remember, this accident prevented Akane
from taking her bath, didn't it?" Ranko asked.

"Of course... how can I bathe when..." Akane answered the redhead.

"Hey! Calm down... go bathe yourself, you need to cool off." Ranko
said, trying to help Akane to cool down. "*yawn* hmm, all this tired
me out. I'm gonna sleep... Ranma, the guest room was the one where
you took your bag from?" she asked her twin.

"Yup! I need to think about some stuff. Go suit yourself." He
answered her.

A very short time later, the futon was prepared and Ranko fell into a
deep, refreshing and well deserved sleep, soon to be copied by Ranma.


Reincarnation - prologue end