An unintended fic which is developing despite that.


Grey grumbled. This was hardly new. He was not as whiny as Shinji Ikari or as given to theatrics as Soun Tendo, but he was hardly a stoic and often feeling put upon.

He had been told that he had one more chance, and that was to take the test that he had turned down quite some time ago. He'd said there was absolutely no chance of success. He'd been told to give it a try at least.

Considering *whose* office the request had come from, he really hadn't thought about declining.

Which brought him here, into a Ranma timeline. He didn't know *when* but he knew *where* and who. Where was Nerima, Furinkan ward. Which made this all suck wind. He was an American who was in Japan due to a Japanese talent scout, at least according to the papers he had.

That test had been to be Akane Tendo's boyfriend in that most shameless tradition of inserts. He had been of the opinion that being fed to carnivorous worms was less onerous. Even after that event, when he had gone through just such a fate on a world known as Gehenna, he had felt that he'd gotten the better of the deal.

In fact, Grey didn't exactly enjoy being *in* a "Ranma" timeline. Insane and ridiculously powerful martial artists were common in such timelines, and as these were all somewhat obsessive and violent, he felt he didn't fit in too well. He would much rather deal with the "Oh My Goddess" crowd (providing one can get Urd away from the potions), or a "Sailor Moon" timeline (despite how severely underage they were - most were at least nice and capable of carrying on a conversation that didn't involve the words 'die' or 'kill' coming up frequently), or "Tenchi" (who might be a weenie in some respects, but he was nice), or "El Hazard" (he'd gotten along famously with Makoto Mizuhara the one time they had crossed paths), or "Slayers" (he hadn't gotten along well with Lina, but he'd found a sort of kinship with Zelgadis) or...

Actually there were quite a few "anime series based" timelines he'd rather be in. And the closer to a mainline this "Ranmaverse" was, the less happy he'd been about it.

The first thing he'd done was find a "Manga No Mori" - one of the more premiere manga shops. And while his command of Japanese had been largely disabled, the pictures could tell him some things immediately. A Rumiko Takahashi *had* written some popular comics - Urusei Yatsura, Maison Ikkoku, and something he didn't recognize involving samurai. No sign of "Sailor Moon" but there was a manga series involving superpower granting sailorsuits from outerspace, something that reminded him a *lot* of the old "Greatest American Hero" series retooled for a Japanese audience. Which meant this *could* be a universe with "Sailor Moon" characters. He wasn't sure he could take meeting them after the last adventure, but he probably should check it out when he could.

The second thing, as it was early in the morning on a schoolday, was finding Furinkan High School.

Grey groaned. There was this huge crowd of boys in sports gear waiting around the front gate of Furinkan High School. So he was at the beginning of the series, he'd be running into Ranma, and likely get his clock cleaned. Of course, considering the Butterfly Effect, he'd likely have maybe one or two days before his knowledge of the series became completely useless. Though there was no guarantee that this was a baseline universe anyway.

Kuno began yelling something with gaijin in it. Figured that his Japanese was so stilted and archaic that only one word in a dozen was recognizable.

The crowd moved. Grey smiled. At last, something to concentrate on besides how much he *hated* being stuck in this situation.

He had some talents, but as this *was* a Ranma timeline, he had to do it in martial arts terms. His papers indicated that he was Greylle Shard, practitioner of Martial Arts Baseball and Heir to the Seven Dragons Style. Since he was not at all fond of baseball, he could see someone's sense of irony showing. As for the "Seven Dragons" - he had no idea what that was supposed to be so he'd just make something up as he went along.


Now holding a baseball bat, Grey made use of kendo and sword techniques drilled into him from the Valkyries. If he allowed *this* crowd to defeat him, it would be a direct insult to his teachers - and they'd be *really* ticked. Of course, this kind of martial arts universe meant a special attack should be called out. Maybe... got it.

The baseball bat was not a particularly bad choice as far as a martial arts weapon. It was fairly well balanced, you could use kendo or jo stick techniques with minor modifications, and you could really thwack someone silly with it.

"Hailstorm Defense!" Hmmm. He'd have to work out some better attack names. He ought to try and keep to a baseball motif whenever possible.

It sheared through a hockey stick to slam into a face mask with enough force to shatter hard plastic, spun and was then brought endwise into a sumo's stomach, swung up and brought underneath a karate practitioner's chin, and rebounded off a soccer player's ribs.

A blocked bokken was the warning that Kuno himself had entered the fray. Another special technique seemed mandated. Maybe something like "Lightspeed Grounder!"

Kuno ended up skipping across the school like a stone across the surface of a pond. Grey decided he'd overdone it a bit. He had to leave Kuno available to fight Ranma later. Uh oh. There was always one more, if that danger sense going off was any indication. Might as well play to the crowd and not even look, just wait then backswing.


Deciding to borrow a move from Bob Hope, Grey made a show as if his bat was a sword and he was slipping it into a sheath, then bowing elaborately.

Waitaminute. *Something* was wrong. There was a lot of muttering going on.

Grey slowly turned, this cold hollow feeling starting up in his stomach. There was a girl with long black hair, out cold on the ground.

He sighed and picked her up, heading for the Nurse's office. "i *told* them this wouldn't work out."


Akane slowly focussed in on the ceiling. Her head hurt. A lot.

"Are you okay, Tendo-kun?" Greylle wanted to use the most formal and distant address possible.

"Who? What?" Akane sat up and the wet cloth from her forehead dropped into her lap.

"I student. Yomiuri Giants want me study over here, scouted out in America. Not familiar Japanese custom."

Akane glared at the boy, who was curiously *not* looking at her. "So what are you doing here?"

"Supposed attend Furinkan. Find fight first day. You okay. I leave now."

Akane frowned at the departing boy's back. She didn't have time for this. It was already...



Universes which have an RN or RM tag usually have an individual named Ranma Saotome. They also have, quite often, most of the usual characters associated with Ranma Saotome.

Due to something called the Law Of Conservation Of Realities, quite a few of these had other elements that never quite crossed orbits with Nerima Japan. These elements existed in a number of other realities as well, without being crossovers or alternates, because the elements in question rarely directly mixed.

In the typical Ranma universe, for example, there were various elements of magic that never got properly explained. Who built the koi rods, or what created Jusenkyo, or even who eventually dealt with that large oni and returned Happosai back to normal after they'd attacked California.

There *were* spellcasters and magical artificiers in such typical "Ranmaverses" - they just preferred quiet areas where there weren't a lot of ridiculously powerful and obsessive martial artists to muck up their property.

For various reasons, these "persons of magic" tended to congregate. For one thing it was awfully handy if one of your experiments got loose to be able to call up your neighbors and ask for a hand. For another, one could only properly gripe and moan about the results of your latest incantation with someone who understood what the blazes you were talking about.

In some universes, this congregation of magi would end up in Pillow Creek, Minnesota. In others, a small place in Utah called Willow Brook. In this particular universe, this community of 238 wizards, magi, artificiers, and such were found in the United States. In a state called Virginia, and in a small rural community known as Pungo, to be precise. A small town on the verge of vanishing, a tiny bit of old fashioned Americana tucked away where most road maps couldn't find it.

Which was how the wizards, magi, artificiers, and other magic types wanted it.

When one gets to a certain level of power, your typical magi suddenly realizes a Universal Truth. That Truth being that most of the motives typically applied to such individuals are actually rather stupid for someone who is trying to unravel the Secrets Of The Universe. Summoning Demons, for example, leads to a short lifespan and one associates with the most dreadful fellows. Conquering The World was rather silly as well, the paperwork and internal politics leeching the joy from the accomplishment quickly. And so on.

So, for wizards and magi and the like, when they reached that level of power, they retired. Summon up some gold? No problem, but why? Use a Copy Item spell and make a half dozen Playstation 2, or a Temporary Manifestation of the latest computer game if that's your fancy. Want that new pop singer's newest CD? Just as simple.

No, material wealth and goals became ludicrous when you'd mastered the basics of matter manipulation.

So one usually sat back and relaxed, cuddling nymphs or other summoned spirits, while trying to work out some really nifty spell or item, or one just puttered around in one's workshop and see what developed. Those at this stage of wizardry mostly didn't want to be bothered with the Mundanes, who tended to get terribly frightened or at least upstaged by nearly all powerful wizards.

Still, they did tend to do things like keep an eye out for young wizards. The ones just learning their power tended to be a bit rambunctious and could get into all sorts of trouble.

Which was why Hieronomus ("Harry") Bosch was roused from a decent nap by a glow on a map that told him that a low power mage had just appeared in Tokyo Japan.


"Don't be silly, Yuka," Akane insisted. "He's a boy. Worse, he's American, so he's even more hormone-addled than the ones here."

"But Akane, you *never* argued with anyone about Kuno's conditions. You just accepted them. So when he defeated you..." Yuka's voice trailed off as she noticed that throbbing vein on Akane's forehead.

Akane took a deep breath, and realized she'd been doing that a *lot* lately. "I never accepted that 'defeat me to date me' crap from Kuno. The only reason I went along with it at *all* was because it was a decent workout. Frustrating as all, but a good workout."

"And he's so tall and his shoulders," began Sayuri.

"Not you too, Sayuri," complained Akane.

"Don't forget his butt," said Yuka, nudging her compatriot and winking. "And that blond hair and those blue eyes make him look *so* exotic."

"...perverts..." Akane mumbled, for once not referring to a boy with that particular epithet.

"Class, we have a new student," the teacher said, interrupting the gossip. "He's a bit late, but considering that he's American, some problems in paperwork are to be expected. It says here..."

Everyone came to attention as the teacher froze momentarily while reading his notes. Just the way he was staring at the paper and repeating "oh my kami" was enough to clue in even Hiroshi and Daisuke that something was up.

"Teacher?" The class president decided to ask.

The teacher turned and began to write things on the blackboard. Akane wasn't that much into baseball, but she did recognize "RBI" and a few of the other terms.

"This boy was scouted out by the Yomiuri Giants in America," said the teacher, glasses gleaming in the flourescent lamps. "They signed him up for as soon as he graduates, and he's attending high school here so they can make sure he's ready for a position."

"Oh no. Please no." Akane looked heavenwards. "Please not in *my* class."

Sure enough, the tall blond boy entered the room and tried to bow. It came off shaky but passable. "Uhm. I... Greylle Shard is. Pleased to meet you. Aaaaaa!"

Akane winced. The boy was making little warding gestures. Then he said very distinctly though under his breath in English "please don't make me sit next to her."

"Shard-san, you'll sit next to Akane Tendo," said the teacher, ignoring the winces and pained expressions from both persons mentioned.


Japanese classes had the teachers change with the subjects, but the classroom remain the same. The exceptions being PE and Home Ec.

Whatever the case, now that he was a little over six feet tall, Greylle was relatively happy that he could stretch his legs from being cramped at a little desk.

Unfortunately, this being his first day, the crowds had wanted to see exactly what the "gaijin tarento" (foreign talent) had.

Which was tricky. Here he was supposed to be the Heir Of Martial Arts Baseball, and he hadn't played baseball in a very long time. All he had going for him was some martial arts training from valkyries and a few decades as a Ranma stand-in, the increased strength and toughness that came from being a dragon in human form, and some minor spellcasting abilities as a cleric. Preparing a few spells, he'd thought he'd need the help.

First he'd done pitching.

Naturally, he'd had time to think about this and come up with special manuever names which had to be spoken before unleashing them. When in Rome and all. So the "Dragon Thunder Pitch" had been a fastball, the "Dragon Spiral Dance" had been his double-curve pitch, his rolling slide was now dubbed the "Earth Dragon Wave" and so on. Incorporating dragons into baseball. For now at least.

His fastball had caused the catcher to slam into the backstop, leaving flaming furrows where his feet had dragged from the force of impact. Greylle had then done a curve ball, a slider, and a double curve. Nothing special, though the double curve got some strange looks.

Then had come batting. Draconic strength was sufficient that the baseball was now missing and presumed in geosynch orbit. One of the others, a grounder, was buried far enough that there was talk of getting a backhoe. Overall, a tentative success.

Preoccupied, Greylle never noticed the guys in the trenchcoats and sunglasses in the bleachers.


The mercenary middle Tendo daughter walked back to her classroom in deep thought, fitting all the pieces she'd just observed together.

Nabiki had smirked and sat down to watch this "practice" when actually it was just everyone and their classmates wanting to see exactly how good the foreign talent was. Martial Arts Baseball? Yeah right!

Nabiki's eyes had doubled in size and her jaw had dropped quite early in the demonstration.

When the boy had announced "Dragon Thunder Pitch" she could have *sworn*, just like out of some sentai sports manga, that the foreign boy had been framed by a glowing blue-white dragon. The pitch had seen the dragon streaking across diamond, resolving into the ball just before it slammed into Honda's catcher's mitt. One of the guys in a trenchcoat had been pointing some kind of radar gun gadget, and Nabiki had noticed the guy had suddenly keeled over on reading the display.

The "Dragon Spiral Dance" had been a pitch that had impossibly followed an "S" shape. The list had gone on for a good portion of the period, almost as if he was making things up as he went along. There had been strange pitches, batting techniques, base-stealing as a martial art, and other things that had occurred too fast for Nabiki to observe properly.

The Baseball Coach had gone from "Damn gaijin infesting the school isn't going to be on Furinkan's team" to "Isn't life a beautiful thing now that we're going to beat the snot out of the other schools" after the first fifteen minutes.

Nabiki kept track of a lot of things. One of which had been that prior to this little demonstration there had been muttering about cheating, or that Akane couldn't be given over to some gaijin no matter what the rules, or that Kuno had finally been hoisted by his own petard. Now it was how neat it was that there was that they had a future baseball star attending Furinkan (which would increase the school's reputation), or that Akane made such a lovely couple with Shard-san (which caused Akane to fall off her seat in the bleachers and glare at her friend Yuka), or that Kuno had finally been hoist by his own petard.

Actually, just beating the snot out of Kuno had assured some popularity to the new student.

Right after class, a group of the Horde had come to Akane and told the puzzled young Tendo that now that she was spoken for and had a decent boyfriend they'd be leaving her alone. Akane had begun protesting that she was *not* going out with the boy. She was *not* his girlfriend. Nabiki had taken a moment to whisper into Akane's ear that if she convinced this group she'd have to go back to the morning melee.

Akane was still standing out in the field wrestling with this moral dilemma as far as Nabiki knew.

Nabiki let herself into her classroom, still deep in thought. She was wrestling with several decisions, quite aware that her own future could hinge on making The Right Choice.


Ripples went out from a single change. Some big, some small.

Somewhere in China, a ripple in the fabric of reality went through a place known as Jusenkyo, which had more than its own share of chaos to begin with.

"Come on boy! I won't go easy on you!"

"Like you ever do!"

"Oh sirs, you have not let me finish my Terrible Tragic Story!"

"Oy Toh Shoh!"

*Legsweep* *SPLASH!*

"Hey, Pop, are we done yet?"

*Burble!* *SPLOOSH!* "BrreeeAAWWWWW!"

"What the hell is THAT?!"

"BreeeeAW!" *THUNK!*

"Aaaaaaa!" *Sploosh!*


Greylle looked over his apartment, then reached out with one hand to put a palm flat against one wall. Stretching his arms out, he then touched the opposite wall with his other hand.

Conclusion: dinky. A little over five feet wide. If he laid on the floor and put his feet against the one wall, then stretched out, he wouldn't be able to extend his arms fully above his head. Maybe seven feet there.

Bathroom was common to a room next door, someone else's room. Whoever it was wasn't home apparently.

The closet was one of the walls, which slid open revealing two shelves.

Unfurnished. Which meant that he had to get a futon and everything else he'd need on this mission, since he was stuck here for a lifetime. Which brought him to finances. Income was...


How was he supposed to eat or anything? Oh. Yeah. IF this worked.

"Create Food & Water," he cast. Doing the rhymes and gestures was better, more controlled, and certainly classier. He just needed to see if he had clerical spells.

A cloud formed, then dispersed, leaving a pile of rice and two pickles. Also some wet floor.

"Make note. When casting spells, have containers ready." Greylle sighed and added paper towels to the shopping list.


as it states above, this was never intended as a fic, just an epilogue to ASD. However, i'd written enough for two chapters by the time i stopped... arrgghh.

Setup: Akane has been harrassed by Kuno for a couple of months, but the stuf only hit the fan and the morning battles had been going for less than a week when she's "defeated". Greylle, as you know, intensely dislikes Akane Tendo for a number of reasons. Therefore he's setting himself up to fail the mission and then go on to find some other place where he can set up shop and not be bothered by her or any of the other Nerimians (Nerimites? Nerima-jin?) At least, that's his plan.

Odd how his plans rarely work out, isn't it?