Curses Aren't The Only Change
Disclaimer: I think that you are smart enough to figure out how much of this I own.
There are many different parallel realities where the same people live sometimes greatly different lives because they or the people around them have made different choices, due to the butterfly effect simply stopping to look at the sky instead of the ground is all it takes sometimes. For example in one cluster of worlds lives a young man named Ranma Saotome, but what happens to him is different in each one. In one he ends up becoming the ruler of a large part of China and in another world he ends up dying from food poisoning. And in a third, well, that is the story that will be told here.
The choice was that made the butterfly flutter in this world was that Genma Saotome decided to go to a bar. This was not an odd event, Genma went into bars all the time and this time he needed a drink even more then normal. The Neko-ken had seemed like such a good idea at the time, but the results were disastrous. Genma was not the only one who was drinking heavily at this particular bar. A lawyer named Shiro Takakita was also there. One of his clients had just died in a plane wreck along with his wife. Their daughter was still alive though and he needed to figure out what to do about the brat.
After Genma and Shiro had each had a few drinks, they ended up talking to each other. Genma gave his well used rant about his ungrateful son in hopes of getting something. Shiro thought this was a great opportunity to both get rid of the kid and get his hands on the Kino's money. So he complimented Genma on his parenting skills and suggested a deal. Genma was very pleased with this deal Shiro had planned. Not only had he managed to get a yearly payment, but his son would have a new sparing partner. The boy needed something that would take his mind off stupid things like being afraid of cats. Also he did feel a bit sorry for the girl, having both of your parents die in a plane crash is hard.
But the story really starts when Genma's son, Ranma, and Makoto Kino are sixteen in London, England.
The streets of London were blanketed in fog and in the distance Sailor V could hear Big Ben chiming the hour, but she was not worried about the time right now. She was on the trail of a thief. There he was. She hadn't lost him. She was going to track this thief to his lair and confront him there! It's bad enough, Sailor V thought, that I keep running into criminals when I am patrolling for signs of the Dark Agency, but why does this thief have to be Japanese like me? Normally Sailor V had no problems with chasing down random thieves, but tonight she was looking for something specific.
"Why ya following Genma?" asked a voice right behind her. Sailor V turned to see a brown haired girl about her age just standing there acting like being on top of a roof was perfectly normal. To cover up her surprise she said tersely. "He's a thief and must be punished."
The girl mathered something too low to be heard then she punched Sailor V off the roof in such a way that she would fall right in front of Genma.
When Sailor V got up she decided to make the best of it. She pointed dramatically at Genma. "I am Sailor V and I will stop your evil crime." Genma took one look at his attacker and burst out laughing. As one might expect Sailor V was less then happy at this reaction.
"Cersent Beam" She looked at the area where the thief had been. There was no way she could have disintegrated him right? She thought tight before being thrown into a wall. By the time she had gotten up again the thief was gone.
Minako Aino could barely get out of bed the next morning, which had been happening way to often lately. She was so tired. She briefly debated with herself about trying to convince her mom that she was too sick to go to school, but decided not to. It hadn't worked last time after all. She had just gotten was a lecture on not staying up all night partying with her friends. She really wished that had been the reason she was still sleepy in the morning, but it wasn't for one thing she had yet to make any real friends at school here. In truth she was the Soldier of Love Sailor Venus, although she was going by Sailor V right now.
Last night had been a long and fruitless one. After her defeat at the hands of that fat thief and his accomplice, she had spent half the night trying to find any sign of the missing boys. She had not been able to find so much as one trace of them. The Dark Agency had hidden them well it seemed. For some reason though she kept thinking about the face of that thief's accomplice instead of the boys, weird.
Artemis was taking a cat nap at the foot of her bed, so she poked him to get him to wake up, maybe he would have some answers. "Do you have any way of tracking down those thieves from last night."
"Minako we are suppose to be fighting the Dark Agency, not chasing down random thieves."
This was an old argument between them and before she thought about it she said "It's not my fault that when I am patrolling for signs of the Dark Agency, I come across criminals and it would be wrong to let them get away with what they are doing."
That may be true, but going out of your way, like now, to catch them is something different."
"But these thieves are different..." Minako was interrupted by her mother calling up the stairs, "Minako you better get going if you want to get to school on time."
Minako sighed, she really didn't want to go to school, "See you this afternoon' she called to Artemis as she left.
That afternoon Artemis had just arrived at Minako's school when a brown haired Interpol officer he knew walked up to him.
"Hi Artemis, Minako should be getting out of school soon, right?"
"Maybe Katarina, If she didn't get detention again. What are you doing here?"
"There is a situation that I thought I should inform Minako about."
Artemis was about to ask what the situation was when Minako came rushing out of the school. "Hey Katarina," Minako noticed her friend seemed to be very serious today, "Whats up?" Katarina gestured for Minako to get in her car.
Once they were all in and belted up Katarina started to drive and she explained. "I think you know that there have been a number of disappearances of teenage boys. About two hours ago The Dark Agency sent a letter to the police saying that they will kill all the missing boys at the East Side Park at 4 this afternoon if Sailor V doesn't show up." She stopped the car and turned to Minako. "This is probably a trap you know. The Powers That Be have already sent several police squads to deal with it. You don't have to go, they should be able to take care of it."
"Can't risk it," replied Minako, "besides none of the officers have any magic do they?"
"No, I wish we could get Special Ops interested in our 'little problem." said Katarina with considerable venom.
"Don't worry, you don't need them, you got me. So where's the park?"
Katarina had apparently expected Minako to say that. "It's right around the corner," she pointed. "Good luck."
Artemis wanted to see his charge fight, but he knew that Sailor V would not be able to fight her best if she was worrying about protecting him and he was to small to be of much help in the fight. So he went up a tree, after all he unlike normal cats did not need the help pf a fireman to get down from a tree.
Oddly enough there was a large pink blimp hovering over the park wit the words Petite Pandora: World's Cutest Wink. Artemis could think two reasons why that thing could be here. Either this was a setup to make Sailor V look bad by having her attack a cultural icon or the Dark Agency had worse taste then he thought possible. The question of which one it was got answered when a cute little girl was lowed from the blimp. When the girl, who Artemis guessed was Petite Pandora, was half way down she winked, and the wink did something but Artemis was not sure what.
"Sailor V! Where are you? I don't see you." called out Petite Pandora, "Ah, there you are. I'll get you for killing my sister, Pandora, Sailor V!"
As the last line was said Petite Pandora transformed into a youma that was neither little nor cute. It was then, as he saw Sailor V pushing though the crowd to get to the youma, that he figured out what that wink had done. However before he could call out a warning, Petite Pandora yelled "Kill her my slaves." and every one in the crowd turned and started attacking Sailor V.
Artemis had to do something. He tried to unravel the spell, but he was unable to grasp the threads of it.
"Genma is being even stupider and more annoying then usual' thought Makoto as she ran, "he didn't have to be so insulting when I just asked why he decided to bring us here, and he had no right to say that about Ryouga just because he finally asked me out on a date.'
Makoto's thoughts were interrupted by the sound of someone gloating over their immanent victory and she decided a fight was just what she needed to take her mind off things. Besides whoever was gloating deserved to have their face kicked in on general principals. So even though she had no idea who the Dark Agency was, she set off towards the noise. When she reached the center of the park where the fighting was she saw the qloater was probably not human and not even doing any of the fighting.
"Man can't I even go for a walk without some looney ranting." yelled a brown haired girl as she punched Petite Pandora.
"You are going to regret that, human!"
"So what's a wimp like ya, who can't fight their own battles gonna do about it?"
"This" yelled Petite Pandora and thew a summoned blade at the girl.
"That the best ya can do?" said the girl as she dodged the blade and used her momentum from that to throw Petite Pandora into a tree, at least that is what Artemis thought had happened. It had gone by rather quick. Then as the girl turned her head he saw the of Jupiter on her forehead.
The girl was Jupiter. He had found another one of them. Artemis needed to get Jupiter's transformation wand to her, but how...wait Artemis noticed something that, while it wouldn't help him directly on getting Jupiter her wand, was even more important, a loose thread in the mind control sell. He pulled on the thread and the whole spell unraveled like a cheap swether and all the people who had been controlled collapsed unconsious.
'Man, this thing's tougher then I thought it would be' thought Makoto 'And now what is it doing?' she could see it summoning a whole lot of blades which the monster threw at Makoto all at once, pinning her to a tree.
"Now, I have you" the monster said as she walked over to finish the job and promptly got hit by a rock that Ranma had thrown.
"I'm not letting ya hurt my sister."
"Another bra-" started the monster.
"Crescent Beam." The girl in the funny looking outfit from last night yelled as she shot off a really cool attack that disintegrated the monster thing.
"is your shoulder ok?" she asked the girl.
"It's just a flesh wound." said Makoto trying not to winch as she pulled the blade out."How did ya do that attack?"
"That is what I want to talk to you about." said a white cat as it dropped down on the blond girl's shoulder.
"C...C...Cat" yelled Ranma and ran off. Makoto of course followed after him, cursing Genma.
As the brown haired girl ran off Sailor V realized why she seemed so familiar, that was the same girl that had been with that fat thief and tried to follow her, but she lost her very fast. "Who was that girl?" she said to her self as she de-transformed.
Artemis, who had just barely managed to stay on his charge's shoulder said. "I believe she is Sailor Jupiter."
"What you got to be kidding me, her. That can't be true." Minako looked at Artemis aghast that a known thief would be a Sailor Senshi.
"I am not kidding, didn't you see the symbol of Jupiter on her forehead?"
"Um, well I did see something, but still..."
As Ranma and Makoto came into the small and dingy apartment Genma noticed Makoto's wound and yelled, "What you got in a fight, girl, you haven't been training hard enough if some mugger in this lousy country can hurt you."
Only her wound stopped Makoto from beating some sense into Genma. "It wasn't a mugger I was fighting ya fat fool. It was a monster of some sort and I threw the damn thing though a tree and it wasn't hurt in the least. If you would just get off your fat ass and teach us a chi attack then I woulda killed it no time flat."
Genma was about to give a scathing reply when he stopped and thought, a rare thing. He did have those schools he created. "In the next few days, I'll test the two of you to see if you're ready, so be prepared."
"Yes, sensei" Makoto said glad that Genma was being serious for once.
That night after a long conversation with Artemis about the other senshi, Minako's parents dragged her to a play which she wasn't paying much attention to, in fact she didn't even remember that the name of it was 'Midsummer Nights Dream.' She was to busy worrying about that brown-haired girl she kept running into when she was Sailor V. First that girl stopped her from catching a thief, then she helped me when I was fighting Petite Pandora, I don't get it. And if that isn't enough now Artemis is saying that she might be a Senshi herself how can a defender of Love and Justice be... oh cute boy.
The boy that had derailed Minako's thought process was sitting two rows down from her and was concentrating intently on the stage. He had red hair and a very cute face. Minako so wanted to introduce herself to him, but when she started to get up her mother stopped her. "Minako just watch the play. You can get up at intermission, honey." Minako paid a lot more attention to the play after that since she wanted to have something to talk about with that cute boy at intermission.
"Speak of all loves! I swoon almost with fear. No? then I well perceive you are not nigh: Either death or you I'll find immediately." With the actress playing Hermia saying these lines the act was over and it was time for intermission and Minako went hunting for the cute red-headed boy. She soon found him looking at the list of plays being preformed this season.
"Do you come to these kinda things often?"
Tomas turned to see the person who had addressed him. Where he could not say that the girl standing before him was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen, for he had seen many beautiful ladies at court, she did have a certain spark that was quite attractive to him.
"Yes, I try to come to William Shakespeare's plays when ever I can. I am very grateful that I was able to make it to this one."
"Cool, so could you help explain some of it to me? English isn't my first language. I'm Minako Aino by the way."
"Thanks Puck...Puck" Ryouga looked around but Puck was nowhere to be found.
"How did you find us, Ryouga?" asked Makoto as she gave him a hug.
Ryouga turned bright red because the cutest girl in the whole world, in his opinion, was hugging him. "Um, I got, um, lost..."
Makoto let go before he got a nosebleed. "See I told you that your ability to get lost would be of use some time. The English you taught me has been much more useful then what the teacher taught us was. Bet the other languages ya taught me will be useful too."
Ryouga rubbed the back of his head. "Glad it was helpful. I was worried when I heard about the slave traders"
"Slave traders" said Makoto.
"Haruka heard some rumors about a slave ring and she thought that had something to do with your disappearance." actually Ryouga himself had been worrying that Genma might have sold them to the slave traders.
"That must have been why we left in such a hurry. That idiot we coulda taken them." said Makoto, "So Haruka is chasing down slave traders. I'm dealing with a girl in silly outfits and me and Ranma are learning how to fight monsters. What have you been up to?"
"Well I just found out some about how to deal with my curse after I helped this King or Lord or something by getting some herbs that they needed to heal the wounds he got from a one eyed warrior. They said I should worry about finding people not places."
When Ranma and Makoto got back from the Cane fighting lessons that Genma had somehow arranged for them, the room they were staying in was empty and Genma's pack was gone. There was a note written on a random scrap of paper laying in the middle of the floor. It read "Gone gathering supplies. be back in a week."
"Think he left 'cause of Ryouga yelling 'prepare to die'?"Makoto asked Ranma trying to make a joke of it.
"Naw the idiot, probably heard about some good loot in some country house." said Ranma.
They checked but Genma had, of course, grabbed all the food and money before he left. This had happened before, but then he had only been gone for couple of days.
Neither Minako or Artemis knew how to go about finding the new senshi, but they both knew they had to find her. Since they had no better ideas and, they had run into her twice by accident, they were just walking around hoping to run into her again. It worked. As she was walking though a basketball court that she liked to boy watch at when she had the time,she saw the very person she was looking for. Well technically both of the people since the girl who Artemis said was Jupiter was with her brother. They were talking to a boy about their age who was wearing a baseball cap.
"Didn't say she was some kind of wizard with the ball?" said baseball cap.
"So ya still lost, just give us the money ya bet and-"
The boy took a wild swing at Jupiter's brother and next thing Minako knew the boy was on the ground and Jupiter was holding his wallet.
"Man, you're loaded." she took five pounds out of it and threw the wallet back to the boy. Then as the boy ran off she turned and saw Minako.
"Um, I have been hoping I would find you soon." a blond haired Japanese girl that Makoto had just caught staring at her said.
Her response was short and to the point. "Do I know ya?"
The girl rubbed the back of her head. "I guess you wouldn't recognize me like this. Last time you saw me you got pinned to a tree by a bunch of blades. How's your shoulder doing anyway?"
"Fine, what do ya want?" Makoto had figured that the girl must be that thief catcher, but what would she want. After all I helped her with that last monster, that should count for something.
Minako saw the stormy expression on the girls face when she asked what Minako wanted. "I just want to talk that's all."
"You buy me and my brother lunch and you can talk while we eat."
"Ok," the girl said slowly, ""I'm Minako Aino."
"Makoto, he's Ranma."
This 'deal' surprised Minako but she agreed to it. Minako looked over both of there grimy torn clothes, Kami was that the same shirt Makoto had been wearing yesterday, it looked like it still had blood stains. "I'll order some pizza. What would you like?"
"Pepperoni, sausage..." Makoto listed off about ten different types of pizza.
"Um, so which one of them do you want?"
"All of 'em."
"Uh, right, Starve a pizza, eat cold feet."
"That don't make no sense." said Ranma before Makoto could.
Minako wasn't listening though, she had just pulled out her cell phone and call the pizza place thinking the whole time that there was no way they could eat that much. "Ok, they said the pizzas should be done in 30 minutes. Do you want to head over there now?"
"So why did you run off so fast yesterday?"
"My bro has a slight fear of cats." said Makoto
"Do not I'm not afraid of anything especially not something silly like ca...c... felines, stupid pops."
"How is it your father's fault?" asked Minako
Ya don't wanta know."
"Oh" said Minako "So where are you going to school?"
"Drasi Jr high." said Makoto
"Not sure we're still going there" said Ranma.
"That's an all boys school in Japan." Minako didn't want to admit it but she knew the name of every boy's school in Japan.
"Ya that's why we're not going there anymore." said Ranma.
"Only been three weeks so we're still on the roll and so we are to still going there." retorted Makoto.
"How and why were you going to a boy's school? You're a girl."
"Genma said it was training. Anyway I wasn't the only girl going there."
Minako thought about asking more about that statement, but decided not to. She might not like the answer, instead she tried to figure out how to go about telling Makoto about being a Sailor Senshi without Artemis around to help. She was going to try her best.
Makoto was too busy eatting to pay much attention to what Minako walking about, something about Grand Destiny and stuff.
"Let me get this right ya want me to were a silly outfit and fight for love and Justice 'cause a cat said so." Makoto said in a tone that said you must be crazy.
Minako, of course, caught on to the most useless thing in Makoto's statement."The Senshi uniforms are not silly."
"Yes they are. Why do you think Pops started laughing when he saw you?" said Ranma.
"Because he's an idiot." What ever reaction
"Ya got that right." Ranma
"Couldn't have said it better myself" Makoto
Minako stared a moment surprised that they agreed with her, instantly. "So are you ready to be a Senshi?"
"Naw, got more important things to do." replied Makoto.
"What could be more important then fighting for love and justice?"
"Getting enough money to eat. Food is important."
"I live at 2234 W Eastmon Dr, if you change your mind." said Minako as Makoto and Ranma left.
The rest of the week passed with out much going on, just several fights in the case of Ranma and Makoto. At the end of it a badly beaten up Genma made his way back into town. He had claw marks on his clothes and he was almost as freaky around cats as his son. One can guess that his trip was less then a success.
"These English are not very hospitable." complained Genma
"Ya mean they won't let ya steal their stuff."
"No I should have not bothered to-"
"leave in the first place." finished Ranma
"Now come on, boy, I was just testing you to see if you were ready. The Yamasen-ken and its brother art the Umisen-ken are based of different types of thievery. Yamasen-ken is in essence breaking in though the front door of a house to steal things. The Umisen-ken is the essence of a thief, who sneaks in the back door, being as quiet as possible and taking belongings without being detected. Now these two arts are too dangerous to use and so I have sealed them and I will not be teaching them to either of you."
Genma's speech was interrupted by his son whapping him on the head, "Then why ya even mentioning them ya old fool?"
"If you would just give me a second, boy." yelled Genma then he cleared his throat and tried to look serious again, "Anyway while I won't teach you those, I will teach you several techniques that I, um, used for inspiration when I created the Yamasen-ken and the Umisen-ken."
"So an art based on thievery uses stolen techniques." said Makoto
Genma asked the heavens "What ever did I do to get such disrespectful children?"
It was not the heavens that answered him though, it was Ranma, who started to list off all Genma's 'training accidents.'
Genma was caught between a number of emotions that he didn't know how to express. In the end he just threw the scrolls with the techniques on them at Ranma and stomping out. He had been right when he thought that having a sparing partner would make his son a better fighter. Unfortunately those two had also learned to work together in a fight and he could not best them both at once.
This is loosely a rewrite of an earlier fic of mine, Timeline 4536. That story was getting rather out of my control, so when Clancrusher suggested rewriting it I decided that was a good idea. Thanks go to Spokavriel for coming up with the name and other stuff and Anime Freak317 for prereading.
Time periods: To keep things simple in this story, the Silver Millennium is going to only refer to the time period that the Senshi first existed in. The Moon Kingdom will refer to the Kingdom (or should that be Queendom) that Queen Serenity ruled.
Ages: This is a point that gave me more trouble then I thought it would, since the inner Senshi are all suppose to be in junior high and Ranma is in high school, but I need some of them to be going to the same school. I thought of many ways to get around this, but in the end I decided just to make the inner Senshi a year older, so they are now finishing up their last year of junior high as the story starts.
AN for 2.0
Thanks to Mike Koos and Spokavriel for the C+C