Disclaimer: This is in print, the actual series are in comic format, I think that would be a clue that I don't own Ranma ½ or any other series that will appear in this story. I will not say this again.
Saphir woke up with an absolutely horrible headache that felt like there was a troop of dwarves mining his head with jackhammers. The headache was so bad that Saphir couldn't even open his eyes from the pain. As he was trying to open his eyes the dark mage muttered, "I really shouldn't have all of those shots of Moonshine last night. What was I thinking allowing Rubius to goad me into that drinking contest?"
Even though Saphir was in a great deal of pain he got the sense of disaster breathing down his neck. Wait a second, that wasn't the sense of disaster, someone actually was breathing on his neck. Now Saphir was starting to get nervous and he timidly opened one eye to see what was going on. Saphir's mind immediately went to DEFCOM 2 when he saw that he wasn't wearing any clothes and that someone had her arms wrapped around him. When Saphir turned around and saw that the arms belonged to an equally nude Esmeraude he started to panic.
Saphir wasn't panicking because of Esmeraude's looks, except for her hands and lower arms which didn't offend Saphir at all Emerald had a supermodel's body. No what made Sapphire so nervous was the fact that he was a dead man breathing. It was well known among those living on Nemesis that Esmeraude was gunning to be Prince Demand's consort and had zero tolerance for anything that might hurt her chances of becoming the prince's bride. When Saphir considered that Esmeraude would figure that being 'ruined' would hurt her chances with his brother along with her legendary temper the only logical conclusion he got was that no one would be able to find his ashes after she finished scattering them across the Solar System.
After promising to destroy the still if he ever made it out alive, Saphir tried to think of a way to keep on living. For two or three minutes the mage panicked as nothing came to him, but then the solution came to him and he felt like an idiot for not thinking of it sooner. Saphir used his magic to silently teleport himself out of Esmeraude's grip and onto her bedroom floor. He quickly collected his clothes that were strewn about on the floor and teleported himself to his bedroom. Hopefully, Saphir prayed to his ancestors, Esmeraude would think that last night was only a dream.
"If I ever ascend to the throne, the first thing I'll do is declare Nemesis a dry planet" Saphir mutter to himself in his lab. It had been two weeks since the Esmeraude Escapade as Saphir had labeled his night where the cold green haired beauty in his mind and things had taken a one way trip to hell. For a second the mage almost wished that Esmeraude had woken up first and killed him in his sleep. At least that way, Saphir morbidly mused, he could have died in his sleep instead of having to deal with the consequences of that night.
Esmeraude never knew what had happen on that night. From what Saphir had heard from one of Rubeus's underlings gossiping Esmeraude thought that she had been playing with one of her toys while drunk that night. For the sake of his health insurance policy, Saphir was not inclined in the least to inform the woman what had really gone on. However, it seemed like the ancient gods had it out for the mage. When Saphir did Esmeraude's medical scan yesterday he had discovered that she was pregnant. Luckily his face and the computer screen were out of Esmeraude's view when that little bit of information popped up. Otherwise the mage would have probably been killed by her simply on the principal of killing the messenger.
Saphir had quickly erased the fact that Esmeraude was pregnant from the computer records and told her that she was in perfect health. What choice did he have? The instant that Esmeraude found out that she was carry the child of someone other then Prince Demand she would have used her magic to kill the child. It wouldn't matter that he was Demand's younger brother and thus that the little boy she was carrying was Demand's nephew. If the father wasn't the prince then Esmeraude would not become a mother. Esmeraude might have a beautify body, but her heart and soul were as cold as liquid nitrogen.
Returning his thoughts to the present, Saphir turned his head to look a large black canister sitting on his desk. Inside that canister was the most precious thing that Saphir had and it the one thing he would give up everything to protect: his embryonic son. Thanks to his extensive knowledge of the magical arts and the vast resources of his lab he had been able to quickly create this device. With it the mage had been able to discreetly remove his son from Esmeraude's womb without her knowing about it when she had teleported to the mall a few minutes ago.
With the immediate danger to his son's life removed Saphir started to see the long term problems that were going to develop. There was no way Saphir could just build an artificial womb and let his son grow in the lab. Not only would that raise the question of just why he had done such a thing in the first place, but it was also impossible for Saphir. That kind of magic just didn't exist to his knowledge and all his new device did was hold his son in stasis. Also, there was the fact that Nemesis wasn't exactly the best place to try and raise a child right now with Demand following Wiseman's advice. Saphir could read between the lines and he saw that there was going to be a war with Earth sometime in the next few years. Saphir definitely did not want to raise his son up in the middle of a war.
Suddenly a flash of inspiration hit Saphir. A few months ago his brother had pulled him aside and asked him to start researching practical time travel. While Saphir had been a bit skeptical about the whole time travel thing he had done as his brother had asked. Thanks to some magical items like the Nanban Mirror that had been in the royal family's possession for a millennium Saphir had been able to create a working time machine. His brother had completely forgotten about the request, but the device was still in his lab waiting to be used.
Nodoka was crying as she looked at the doctor's test results. She and Genma had been married for five years now and they didn't have a single child. For a woman who had always dreamed about having a large family the fact that she didn't have a single child caused a great deal of pain. What made the pain almost unbearable was the fact that it now appeared that she wouldn't be able to have children at all. According to the doctor's report that she had receive Genma's sperm count from a sample she had discreetly sent in was so low that there was almost no chance of Genma ever fathering a child.
What was she to do? All Nodoka had wanted out of life was to marry a good man and raise a happy family. Now it seemed that her dream would never fully come true. How could it come true as long as she was married to Genma? Thanks to her belief in honor she would never try to get the marriage dissolved or cheat on Genma. Silently Nodoka prayed to her ancestors asking for a way that she could have at least one child that wouldn't involve her cheating on her husband.
Suddenly a calm voice from behind Nodoka said, "Hello Nodoka Saotome." Nodoka turned around to see who the intruder and was surprised to see someone sitting in one of the living room chairs. The intruder was a bluish-black haired man dressed in strange clothes with a black upside-down crescent moon on his forehead. Nodoka had no clue how the man had gotten in her house and she was frightened by that fact.
The man smiled and raised his hands in a non threatening manner before saying, "Be at peace Nodoka for I mean you know harm. My name is Blue Saphir of the Black Moon Clan and I came here because we can both help each other out. You see Mrs. Saotome I am an alchemist and magician from the 30th century. According to my ancestor living in this era's journal the Saotome family died out with you and your husband Genma Saotome."
Part of Nodoka wanted to deny Saphir's words due to the pain they caused. After all, how could or why would someone travel a thousand years into the past? However, there was something about this Saphir that just made Nodoka realized that he was telling the truth. With tears in her eyes Nodoka sobbed out, "Why are you telling me this? If I truly never have a child in my life I would have preferred to have the chance to cling on to the faint hope that I could one day have a child."
Saphir walked over to Nodoka and gently gave her a comforting hug. It wasn't in his nature to cause other people pain and so he tried to help calm Nodoka down. Once Nodoka had stopped crying half an hour latter Saphir said, "I am sorry that my message has caused you pain Mrs. Saotome. However, I didn't travel into the past just to deliver this terrible news to you. If you would hear me out I have a proposal that would allow you to have a child and still keep your honor."
Instantly hope started to fill Nodoka's heart. Perhaps this future magician was her ancestors' answer to her prayers. With hope in her eyes Nodoka frantically said as Saphir sat down again, "What is your proposal?" She then immediately followed that by saying in a more nervous tone, "Why are you offering me this opportunity?"
Nodoka watched a black canister suddenly appeared on the coffee table in front of Saphir. In a very somber tone Saphir said, "A little over two weeks ago in my time I got drunk and accidentally slept with one of the members of the royal court that I belong to. This courtier is a very cold and calculating woman who will stop at nothing in her bid to become my brother, our ruler's, bride. Esmeraude, that's this courtier's name, would have killed our child that came from that night without a second thought. Luckily I am the only person who knew what truly happened on that night and that Esmeraude was pregnant. Using my magic I was able to secretly remove my son's embryo from her womb and place it into this container in front of me."
"In my time my brother is preparing for a major war that I fear will cost us greatly. Also, I don't have the magical ability to sustain my son so he can grow to the point that he can live without a womb. All of this, combined with the fact that my son's life would still be threatened even if the war is called off and I could get him to grow, is why I'm in the past. My hope Mrs. Saotome is that you would consent to allowing me to transfer my son into your womb and raise him as your own."
There was an immense amount of pain in Saphir's voice and eyes as he spoke. Nodoka could see that the man was truly worried about his son's life and was apparently trying something desperate to save the little one's life. After carefully thinking everything over Nodoka decided to accept Saphir's offer. One shouldn't reject a blessing just because it came in a slightly different form then one expected. In a calm voice she said, "I accept your offer Saphir."
Nodoka watched as relief washed over Saphir when he heard her accept the offer. Saphir reached over to the canister and gently pressed down on the center of the top of the canister. When Saphir's finger was withdrawn a small black diamond slowly rose from the container. To Nodoka's surprise a dark beam suddenly shot out of the diamond and hit her where her womb was. Although Nodoka was shocked that a beam was hitting her, she noted that she didn't feel any pain. After a few seconds the beam dissipated and then the canister faded from existence.
Saphir looked at Nodoka and said, "Thank-you for doing this Mrs. Saotome. Words can't describe how happy I am to know that my son is safe. Just remember: one cannot change the path behind them that they have walked, but one can change the path that they will walk." After saying those enigmatic words Saphir disappeared leaving Nodoka alone in her house again.
This whole misadventure was now officially FUBAR and Ranma knew it. Right now Ranma was wishing that Plum had never come to visit him in Nerima. Ranma was willing to compromise on a few things in order to try and get a cure for his curse, but there was no way he would accept a cure if it cost someone their life. Unfortunately due to a series of misunderstandings and stupidity on both sides Akane was dying and the only way he could save her life was being blocked by Saffron. This situation could have been avoided if the Phoenix tribe had just asked for the Jusenkyo map so they borrow the magical water for a few days.
Of course, given how arrogant their leader Saffron was this whole confrontation was all but inevitable. What infuriated Ranma the most about Saffron was the fact that this megalomaniac didn't care at all that Akane was dying. In fact the man seemed to be taking pleasure at his suffering over not being able to save the girl. Right now the urge to beat Saffron so badly that he thought he was a tweedy bird came second only to desire to save Akane's life.
But the question on Ranma's mind was how could he accomplish either of these goals? As long as Saffron was in the area the hot head wouldn't allow him to get Akane to the magical waters to save her life. On the other hand, Ranma couldn't see how he could defeat Saffron in time to save Akane. His best shot had been to use the Gekkaja that he had stolen earlier from the Phoenix people. Unfortunately Ranma had lost the Gekkaja a few moments ago when he had traded blows with Saffron when the bird brain was holding the Kinjakan. Ranma had been too surprised at having his attack deflected back at himself that he had accidentally lost his grip on the weapon.
Without the Gekkaja Ranma was up a creek without a paddle and he knew it. Saffron was just emitting too much heat for him to get close enough for hand to hand combat. The only range attack that Ranma could think of that might have a chance of working was the Hiryu Shoten Ha or a revision of that technique. However, he first needed the Gekkaja to create enough cold energy to be able to use the move. What made this situation all the more hopeless was the fact that he was falling in the air like a sitting duck with Saffron staring down at him.
Suddenly Ranma noticed Saffron's wings slow down until they were flapping at all. The next that the martial arts protégé noticed was the fact that he wasn't falling anymore. Ranma would have uttered his utter shock at what was going on, but he found that he couldn't open his mouth. In fact, he couldn't move any part of his body at all. This level of craziness was just not what Ranma needed right now and he wished he knew what was going on.
Just when Ranma thought things couldn't get any weirder he heard someone's voice speaking from out of no where. "Calm down Ranma" the masculine voice said strangely causing Ranma to calm down a bit. The voice then said, "My name is Blue Saphir Ranma and I am talking to you telepathically with my magic. Right now time is passing extremely slowly from our perspective because my magic is hyper accelerating both our consciousness."
Ranma was annoyed that this magician was interfering in such a critical battle and angrily snapped out with his mind, "Why are you doing this? If you haven't noticed I've got to save Akane's life. So if you don't mind I've got to figure out a way to win this battle."
Saphir's voice immediately replied, "You can't save the girl's life as you are now and you know it. Yes, there is a high chance that you will be able to figure out a way to defeat Saffron. However, there is almost no chance of you being able to figure out how to win in time to save the girl's life. In your heart you know that and it causes you pain. You don't want someone you know let alone someone you love like a sister to die."
If Ranma could he would have cried when he heard those words. It was something that he had been trying to deny so he could hang on to the hope that he could save Akane. He then called out, "Why are you telling me this Saphir? Do you want to torment me?"
In a soothing tone Saphir said, "I don't want to hurt you Ranma, I want to help you. There is a tremendous amount of magical power within you Ranma that has been sleeping for your entire life. Your sleeping magic is strong enough to kill Saffron in time for you to save the girl's life. I have the power to unlock your sleeping magic so that you can use Ranma, but there is a cost. If I awaken your magic it will consume almost your entire Chi to increase the amount of magical power you have. This consumption of your Chi to fuel your magic is sadly unavoidable and irreversible. If I awaken your magic, you will never be able to use Chi again at all for the rest of your life. It is unlikely that I'll be able to make this offer again Ranma so please consider all the consequences and choose wisely. You're the one who will have to live with the consequences of the choice."
Ranma didn't know to say or what he should do. He wanted to Akane, but to give up his abilities to use Chi to do it? Ever since the cat's tongue incident he had been using his Chi to augment his body's abilities. If he gave that up he wouldn't just be giving up moves like the Hiryu Shoten Ha or the Moko Takabisha, he'd be giving up almost half of his physical abilities as well. People like Kuno who he thoroughly trounced without breaking a sweat would become serious challenges again. Could he do it? Could he make that sacrifice?
But even as terrible as the thought of loosing his Chi abilities was to Ranma, the thought of letting Akane die was even worse. How could he face the Tendo's at tell them that Akane was dead because she had been forcibly involved in one of his adventures? Moreover, how could he live with himself knowing that he had traded Akane's life so that he could keep his abilities? With a heavy heart Ranma made his choice and he said, "Do it. Unlock my magic."
"Do it. Unlock my magic." Those words echoed in Saphir's mind as he felt every ounce of pain that his son felt over the thought of losing his abilities. When he had implanted Ranma, he thought the name Nodoka had chosen was very fitting; into Nodoka's womb he had sealed all of Ranma's magic. This was done so that no one could track Ranma via the boy's magic and thus the boy could be safe. Otherwise Ranma might be detected by the Sailor Senshi living in the 20th century and a confrontation might erupt between the boy and the Senshi for some dumb reason or another.
That was one reason why Saphir had been so angry when his brother had ordered the attacks in the 20th century. Not only did it increase the chance that Ranma might end up fighting the Senshi if they detected him, but it was pointless as well. The Black Moon's fight was, as pointless as it was, with Neo-Queen Serenity and Crystal Tokyo. Attacking the Senshi in a parallel version of the 20th century was just creating a second front to the war.
Saphir forced himself to ignore the war going on and focus all of his effort on helping his son. Around Saphir's wrist was a small black pendant that was linked to the seal on Ranma's magic. The pendant had allowed Saphir to stay linked with Ranma and know the boy's condition for the past decade even though he had lost the first six years of Ranma's life due to an initial problem he had with adding that feature to the pendant. Saphir calmly said the activation phrase, "Cast out of the Heavens, arise and claim your proper place."
Back in the 20th century, Ranma felt like a dam within him had just broken and all the power that the dam had been holding back was flooding his very being. As his newly unlocked magic encountered the massive amounts of Chi that was stored in his body the magic consumed the Chi and grew stronger. Unfortunately for Ranma, the conversion process was unbelievably painful and every cell in his body felt like it was on fire. Also Ranma could actually feel his streangth leaving him as his Chi dwindled to the point that it was just enough to sustain his life.
Once the physical pain of the conversion process ended Ranma felt better then ever. The new mana that was now flowing through Ranma had healed the physical damaged that the conversion had done and had filled the teen with a sense of euphoria. Ranma could feel his mana and he loved how it felt. His mana was wild, untamed, and powerful. It sang to him about how powerful it was, how with it he was unstoppable.
The new feelings that Ranma's mana evoked in him almost caused Ranma to become intoxicated with euphoria. This was because the type of mana that Chaos Magic used was very emotionally charged when it was called into use. Normally magic users who used Chaos Magic would gradually build up their magical abilities and learn to keep themselves emotionally grounded. If a Chaos Magic user lost their cool then their mana would carry them away and the magic user would become temporarily insane until their mana stores were exhausted.
Normally in such a case a chaos user like Ranma, who just gained one of the largest pools of magic known and who had no training in chaos magic, would have been driven temporarily insane. Luckily for Ranma sanity he had two things going for him kept him grounded. The first thing helping to ground Ranma was his curse. Jusenkyo was, not all that surprisingly, a chaos mana wellspring which was why the pools were 'cursed'. Every time the curse was activated Ranma had been exposed to minute amounts of chaos mana. Those tiny amounts of chaos mana had mixed with his previously locked stores of mana resulting in his water magnet status. What really mattered at the moment was the fact that this process had also partially immunized Ranma to the nastier effects of chaos mana.
The second thing that saved Ranma's sanity was the very reason why Ranma had his mana stores unlocked. Every ounce of Ranma's being was focused on the single goal of saving Akane's life. This determination allowed Ranma to cut through the mental haze his magic was creating and focus on a single goal. Sure, the sheer amount of magic Ranma now possessed meant that it had some influenced on his mental state. However, Ranma still more then sane enough to use his magic at the level he was using it on for now. With a magically enhanced rage filled voice Ranma screamed out, "Prepare yourself Saffron for today is the day you DIE!"
Ryoga, Mousse, Shampoo, and a still mind controlled Genma were watching the titanic battle between Ranma and Saffron from the relative safety of the cliff they were on. Both the boys had felt a lump in their chests when Ranma had lost the Gekkaja. Normally they would have been elated to witness Ranma getting his butt handed to him on a sliver platter, but not this time. The stakes were just too high in this battle for both boys and they were both, although they would deny it to their dying day, praying for Ranma's victory.
Everyone hiding on the cliff was surprised when Ranma suddenly screamed out in agony and a purplish-black aura of energy suddenly came from the pigtailed boy. None of them had a clue what Ranma had done or what that energy was. They knew from their senses that the energy Ranma was generating now equaled if not surpassed the power that Saffron had. Shampoo was first to speak up and she said, "What is that energy that Arien use?"
Ryoga immediately said, "I don't have a clue. Whatever it is, it's definitely not chi."
Mousse then retorted while playing with his glasses, "Once again Ranma pulls a new trick out of his ass when the chips are down. I swear he comes up with more crazy tricks for these times then the weapons I have up my sleeves." What was left unsaid was just how relived Mousse was that Ranma had done this.
No one on the cliff could hear Ranma or Saffron when the two were talking, but they knew that Ranma had just said something that had incensed the Phoenix King. What else could cause Saffron's posture to suddenly switch from anger to pure hatred? The assembled members of the NWC then watched as Saffron sent the largest pillar of fire that any of them had ever seen towards Ranma. The trio's eyes then immediately darted to Ranma so they could see what he would do. Genma was too busy doing a remarkable impression of a dodo bird for a panda because of the mind control to pay serious attention to the fight.
To the trio's surprise Ranma had his hand on a large ball of the energy that was surrounding him. They watched as Ranma launched his unknown attack at the pillar of fire. When the two attacks collided in mid-air a huge amount of black lighting formed and the lighting bolts struck everywhere. Although they were afraid of the lighting hitting them, the trio nevertheless continued to watch the battle.
They breathlessly watched as Ranma's attack began to burrow into Saffron's attack creating streams of fire that shot out like a deflected stream of water. Each of the teens started cheering Ranma on as their friend's attack steadily cut through Saffron's. Time seemed to stop for a split second when Ranma's attack finished cutting through Saffron's attack and collided with the Phoenix King himself. Then Ranma's attack exploded in a blinding flash of light forcing the on lookers to divert their gaze.
When the trio returned their gaze to the battlefield the saw that all that remained of Saffron was the tip of one of his wings. They also watched as Ranma fell to the ground with a thud. Ryoga was the first to speak and he said, "Ranma must have put everything he had into that attack to insure that Saffron died." This statement earned a round of head nods from the Amazons.
Suddenly Ryoga remember why this last brawl had started in the first place. In a panic voice he said, "Oh no! Akane still needs the water from the Dragon Tap or she'll die!" Ryoga then turned to Mousse and said, "Throw me at the Dragon Tap Mousse. It's the only way we can get the water to Akane in time."
Mousse nodded his head and double checked to make sure that his glasses were on. Now was NOT the time for vanity to get in the way of seeing the target. He only had one shot to help save Akane's life. It was an unwritten rule among the NWC that no matter what anyone said or did that no one was to be permanently hurt or killed. Besides, he needed Akane around to help him get Shampoo for himself. And so for good and selfish reasons Mousse grabbed Ryoga by the arm and started spinning in a circle. Once Mousse was sure that he had put enough moment in the spin he sent Ryoga flying strait towards the Dragon Tap.
As soon as Ryoga closed in on the Dragon Tap he stretched out his hand a cried out, "Bakusai Tenketsu!" The Dragon Tap was completely destroyed when Ryoga's finger touched the tap unleashing a torrent of water. Ryoga was one happy little porker as he was carried by the water to where Ranma and Akane were lying. Oh he just couldn't wait to see Akane safe and sound. He could just see her in his mind thanking him for saving her life.
Ryoga was so into his fantasy of Akane thanking him that he didn't pay attention to where the water was carrying him. Naturally Ryoga was knocked out of his daydream when he felt himself hit something and then land on something soft. When Ryoga opened his eyes he saw that he was lodged between Ranma's breasts. Even though the lost boy knew that Ranma was really a boy his shyness kicked in and the porker was out cold.
Author's Notes: Just so people know this story was inspired in part by Child of light born in darkness.