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Ranma 1/2: New Challenges
All That We Have Known
Chapter 12

"Fe Fi Fo Fum, I smell the blood of Saotome-san," the giant

"Funny, all I smell is your bad breath," Ranma replied, jumping
to the demon's shoulder and delivering a powerful kick to it's face.

Galfgar roared. "You try stay locked in a statue for a thousand
years and see how good your morning breath is! Just make it easy on
yourselves and submit to me!"

Ranma sighed. "Why do you all-powerful types spout the same
garbage? `Foolish mortals, submit, die, can't hurt a god.' It gets
rather boring after awhile." He landed onto the ground and released a
ki-blast at the same time as Akane.

The demon staggered under the impacts until it seemed he was
about to stumble through the outer wall of the Kuno estate, then
something strange happened. He stopped suddenly, as if he had
backpeddaled into an invisble wall. A bright white light flared up
behind him and by the expression on his face, it seemed to be painful to
the creature.

Galfgar snarled and stepped up his attacks. He was already
bleeding from several small cuts and gashes made by the twin blades of a
pair of ninja trainees, and a certain giant spatula. He was strong and
tough, but he was slow.

Unfortunately, he had to get in a lucky strike sometime and
managed to catch Yuri in the air with a backhanded strike. She screamed
in pain and went tumbling into a wall.

Enraged, Kenji quickly thrust his sword into the monster's
backside as far as he could, then withdrew. Galfgar growled in agony
while the young ninja went to check on his sister. Kneeling by her, he
determined that she was unconscious and there was blood by her head.

Suddenly, Akane was beside him. "How is she?" she asked,

"I-I don't know!," he replied hysterically. [I promised to
protect her and this happens!] "Sh-she's not moving and there's blood...

Akane tried to calm him. "It's okay, she's going to be fine. It
looks like just a light concussion. We'll get her to a hospital and
she'll be fine." When she didn't get a response, she looked up. "Kenji-

He was standing now, and looking back at the battle. "He did
this. He hurt my sister. Tell Ukyo and Ranma to get clear. Apparently,
there's some sort of barrier that keeps this creature on the property,
and it hurts him when he hits it." His eyes narrowed and Akane didn't
like the tone of voice he used next. It was so full of venom and hate.
"I'm gonna give that SOB my strongest wind blast and pin his ugly hide
against that barrier."


She nodded and picked up his sister, taking her to the farthest
end of the battle and setting her down where Nabiki could see to the
young ninja girl.. As Kenji concentrated his wind energies, Akane
informed the others. Kenji felt the spiral of wind descend on him and
gather around his body. He struck his hands out focused on the demon in
front of him. The others leapt clear.

"Hey Ugly!" he yelled. Galfgar looked up at him. "This is for

The mega-blast of wind shot forward in one concentrated stream,
slamming into Galfgar and driving him backwards. Sure enough, he struck
the barrier behind him and howled in agony, unable to move from the
shear amount of wind that was pinning him. Light from the invisible
barrier flared behind the demon. Ranma and Akane added a few ki-blasts
while he was pinned, and Ukyo charged a few spatulas with her creative
ki energy. She tossed them and they exploded after embedding themselves
in his skin.

After 20-30 seconds, Kenji felt his strength begin to wane and
he reluctantly cut off the attack. As soon as he did, Galfgar unleashed
a red energy beam that cut into the ground and struck Kenji while he was
recovering. He went rolling along the ground and ended up
unconsciousness. It was a good thing, too, since had he been awake, he
would have been suffering badly.

"Yeesh, that hurt!" Galfgar grunted. "I guess he was just full
of hot air!" He snickered at his own joke. "Anyway, it doesn't seem to
take much to stop one of these puny mortals."

"Then foul demon, you shall face the Blue Thunder!"

All attention was now focused on the figure standing on the
highest point (which wasn't saying a whole lot, everything was pretty
much flattened) and pointing a katana at the demon. The sword was
crackling with blue electrical energy.

Kuno wasn't finished with his speech. "For too long, demon, you
have afflicted my family and caused us to hurt those we care about. The
madness ends now!" He charged.

"Kuso!" Ranma swore. "He's gonna get himself killed! Come on!"

The three remaining martial artist re-entered the melee. Kuno's
sword, charged with lightning, bit deep as he swung at the creature. He
didn't quite posses the speed of the others and was soon whacked away.

Galfgar lifted his arms and and shot another wave of the bone-
spikes out, their course set for the the youngest Tendo.

Ranma yelled her name, trying to warn her, but Akane didn't
move. Instead, she burst into gold flames and caught a couple of the
large spikes in her hands, while dodging the rest. She flipped them
around and readied herself.

"TORA SUMAT-SU!" she yelled.

Her body became a golden comet that shot through the air to
impact the creature's chest. There was a flash of an explosion, and
Galfgar was thrown backwards to impact the invisible wall that was
keeping him on the estate. He now had two spikes speared through his
chest. Akane backflipped out of the impact and landed on the ground.

"This isn't working!" Ukyo yelled. "I'm out of spatulas and he's
still standing! None of our attacks are strong enough. He just keeps
healing himself." She limped up to Ranma and Akane. Her leg had received
a nasty gash from a near claw strike by the creature.

"Then we need a new, stronger attack," Ranma said slowly. "It
just heals from the physical attacks, but ki attacks really seem to hurt
it. Ucchan, back away and guard Kenji and Yuri, there's something I'd
like to try."

"Okay, Ranchan, be careful! I believe in you." She limped away.

"I've had enough of this," Galfgar stated. "Can't we just skip
to the end now where the singular hero is supposed to face me?""

"Akane, stay close to me," Ranma whispered. She nodded, then he
said louder, "Hey ugly, right here! Tell you what, let's settle this
now. Take me out, and you win."

"Yes, Saotome, I kill you and the master will triumph! That, and
I'll get a nifty raise when I return to the demon plane." He began to
glow with a blood red aura, bringing himself to full power.

"Akane, put your arms around me and use your Tora Dokiken,"
Ranma said quietly. "If we join our ki, we may able to stop him. And
whatever you do, don't let go."

She wrapped her arms around his waist and rested her head on
his shoulder. "I love you Saotome Ranma, so don't screw this up and
leave me."

"Hey, have ya ever known me to fail when it really counted?" He
grinned back at her, then his visage changed. "I love ya, too. Have
faith in me; I need you to believe in me for this to work."

She nodded. "I do, I know you can do this."

Ranma turned face forward again as Akane activated the Tora
Dokiken. Both were consumed by the fiery gold aura, and Ranma drew from
both his and Akane's ki, forming the sphere of energy between his hands.
It continued to grow, until it was larger than half his body.

Ukyo realized what he was about to do. [But will he have enough
confidence for it to work? It couldn't hurt to give him some more.] "I
know you're the best Ranchan, you can beat him!" She nudged Kuno who was
standing next to her and hissed," Say something encouraging!"

He glared at her, but she waved her battle spatula at him
menacingly. He gulped, then turned and said loud enough for Ranma to
hear, "I, too... believe in you, Saotome. We had our differences, but I
know you to be a strong warrior."

"Gotta admit, I didn't think much of you when you first
arrived," Nabiki said, catching on. "But I know now that you always
protected Akane no matter what the cost."

Kenji was sitting against a wall with his sister's head in his
lap, and Nabiki glared at him. He didn't know quite what was going on,
but he followed suit. "Uh, you helped when I needed it. You're the
strongest guy I know."

Ranma heard all of this, and felt his confidence grow to new
heights. His friends believed in him, Akane loved him, he loved Akane,
and there was nothing he couldn't beat. This demon would die. The
forming ki-ball grew bigger.

"Time to end this!" Ranma yelled.

"I highly agree! I'm gettin' a nasty cramp in my right back
spike." Galfgar retorted. His red aura was huge now, almost doubling him
in height. Then, he launched his attack.

A huge beam of swirling red and black energy lanced out toward
the gold couple. Before it hit, they could hear Ranma shout.


The beam engulfed them. For a few seconds, everyone else lost
sight of them. Then, a spark of blue light emerged from the turbulent
energies, growing ever stronger. When it was full size, they could see
both Ranma and Akane encased in a blue and gold sphere, the red and
black energy washing around them. Ranma thrust his cupped hands forward.


The sphere expanded slightly, then an intense blue beam shot
out, cutting through
the red energy and nullifying it. It slowly grew in size and intensity.

Galfgar seemed to realize he was losing. "Oh momma, this ain't

With a final flash, the beam tore the rest of the way through
it's counterpart and engulfed the monster, pushing him into the
invisible wall that caused him so much pain.

The sphere began to shrink as Galfgar wailed in agony. With a
final push, Ranma sent the remaining energy all at once. The final blast
exploded against the creature in a flash of bright blue light, forcing
all to shield their eyes.

When Nabiki opened her eyes again, she noticed several things.
Ranma and Akane were froze in the same position, with her arms around
him and his cupped outward. Also, Galfgar was still standing. His skin
was blackened, green blood running from nasty-looking pores. Nabiki
thought he looked pretty awful, even for a dark creature of the demon

The group watched expectantly as he dropped to one knee. He was
obviously still alive, but it didn't look like he had much left. Nabiki
inhaled sharply as she saw Kuno approach it.

"You are finished monster," he stated. "And when your master
comes, he will be similarly obliterated. For now, face your defeat at
the hands of Blue Thunder!" He pointed his katana up, and lightning
lanced down from the sky, energizing the blade. He leapt at the creature
and sliced downward, starting at the middle of his grotesque head, and
ending at it's crotch. The crackling energy dissipated and Kuno backed

"Oh my!" Galfgar sputtered. "I coulda... been... a contendah..."
He then ran out of steam and his body fell apart. First in half, then
the rest of him simply crumbled into black dust.

For awhile, nobody moved. Then slowly, they gathered around the
exhausted and now-collapsed couple. Kenji had recovered enough of his
strength to stand, and carried his sister, who had also revived.

"Ranma, I'm no martial artist, but I could tell that was
incredible!" Nabiki said.

"Indeed, `twas a mighty blow that thou delivered this day,
Saotome," Kuno admitted, grudgingly

Ranma was shocked to get such a compliment from Kuno. "Thanks.
That sword of yours was pretty cool, too. What's the story with that?"

"I shall tell you another day. For now, we should leave this
place and recover our

"I never thought I'd say this, but I agree with Kuno," Akane
said. "I'm pooped."

Ranma recovered enough to force himself to his feet. He helped
Akane up and the small group left the battleground that was once the
Kuno estate.

Nabiki took Kenji and Yuri to the hospital along with Ukyo to
get their injuries taken care of, while Ranma, Akane, and Kuno walked
back to the dojo. Since he had come through for them at the end and
seemed back to his old (sane) self, they allowed him to stay at the
Tendo Dojo until the Kuno mansion could be rebuilt.

Ranma was still uncomfortable with the idea of Kuno spending
the night on the same property as him, but he was just too tired to
argue. Plus, Kuno would be sleeping out in the dojo instead of the
house, so it wasn't like he was going to be in the same room.

Across town, two people awoke from their unconsciousness and
stared at each other. Slowly, they got off each other and sat there,
unsure of what to say.

Finally, one spoke. "What just happened?" He grasped his
throat, wondering why his voice sounded different.

"Wh-who are you?" Ariko asked, worridly. She too, grabbed her
throat in surprise.

"Why do you look like me!? What's going on?"

Ariko felt her chest and looked down, the promptly fainted.

Hikaru slapped his head. "Great, just great. I don't how this
happened, but obviously Hikaru didn't take it as well. I wanted to get
closer to him, but this isn't what I had in mind." He sighed. "I guess I
better figure out a way to fix this."

He stood up and looked down at his (her?) fainted self and
shook her (his?) head. "And I better do it before Hi-chan has a nervous

Kasumi help set Kuno up in the dojo with Genma's old futon and
blankets, but he didn't go to sleep right away. Instead, he assumed a
lotus position and pondered this latest development.

The demon who had afflicted his family with madness was finally
gone, after who knows how many centuries. He knew he couldn't blame his
delusions entirely on the creature; after all, they were based on his
own perceptions. Yet the creature sensed both Tendo and Saotome blood,
as well as his own. What did it mean? And what was the talk of the

There was a basement room that contained many old texts beneath
the Kuno mansion. Hopefully, it survived and he could go there for
answers. Something about all this seemed eerily familiar. Maybe with
Galfgar gone, his father and sister would return to normal? Maybe his
father would have some answers?

"Don't hurt yourself, Kuno-baby," came a familiar voice from the

"To what would you be referring Tendo Nabiki?" he asked.

Nabiki had returned home after checking the three in. They were
going to spend the night there, but since the middle Tendo hadn't
received any real injuries, she went home.

She walked up to him and sat down. "You're thinking, I can
tell." She smirked. "It's a rare sight and I was tempted to take
pictures for posterity."

Kuno sighed. She did love to tease him. "Tendo Nabiki, I have
much to apologize for, and much to atone for. No, please let me finish.
My behavior over the past year and a half has been dishonorable. I am a
dishonored samurai from a long line of dishonored samurai. The fact that
the beast was in some way responsible, does in no way ease my blame. I
wish to make amends and I trust you know better than I how to best go
about that."

She smiled. "You got that right. I've got several ideas I'll
discuss with you in the morning." She cocked her head. "You know, you're
kinda cute when you act this humble. Ranma rarely has this kind of meek

Kuno turned his head to look at her. "Tendo Nabiki, is it true
that Ranma and the pig-tailed girl are the same person?"

Nabiki actually looked moderately shocked. "You finally figured
it out? It's about time, and yes it is true. Ranma was traveling with
his father in China when they fell into the cursed springs of Jusenkyo.
His father now changes into a panda when hit with cold water and Ranma
changes into a girl. Hot water changes them back." She cocked her head
at him and smirked. "You do know this means you've been in love with a
man all this time?"

Horror crossed his face, even as he hid that face in his hands.
"Surely, the heavens must hate me. My life must be some sort of, how do
you say, `cosmic joke'."

Nabiki rolled her eyes. "Oh come on, Kuno-baby. Quit being so
melodramatic. You see the truth now, don't you?"

He looked up slowly. "Yes. Ever since the demon was vanquished,
it's as if a fog has been lifted from my mind. I can see things more
clearly." He lowered his head. "But if my perceptions were wrong before,
how can I trust them now?" He got up and went to the dojo window. "What
I knew before was a lie. That both my loves are lost to me. No, I take
that back. They never were mine to begin with. I was only in love with
the idea of being in love. I do not know how to love."

Nabiki stood up and crossed her arms over her chest. "Puh-
lease, Kuno-baby. You'll find someone new to obsess over in no time."

"At least one thing ceases to change. Thy wit continues to
plague me."

She smirked. "It's mutual, Kuno-baby."

[Mutual? I wonder.] Kuno turned to her with a curious glint in
his eye. "Nabiki-kun, would you perchance be free this weekend? I would
show my gratitude to all you've done for me."

Nabiki's smiled disappeared. "'Nabiki-kun'? You're being
awfully familiar aren't you?" He simply smiled at her, and she sighed.
"Very well. On one condition, though."

Kuno nodded, understanding perfectly. "But of course. As a
gentleman, I would consider no less than paying for the entire day."

Her smile reappeared somewhat. "You read my mind. There may be
hope for you yet." She began to walk toward the door. "I'll look forward
to it.

As she walked away, Kuno spoke up again. "There is two more
things I would offer you."

Her ears perked up. "Oh? And what's that?"

"First, I will be staying here while, so I trust you will charge
me appropriate room and board." She nodded. "And second: A job working
for me. While my family owns shares in numerous companies, I do not know
the first thing going on with them. I could use a trusted financial
advisor to look after our family investments. Again, I feel you can
determine a suitable salary."

Nabiki's eyes widened, as she came as close to genuine shock as
she had ever come. [He's basically writing me a blank check to manage
his investments!] She recovered quickly. [Wait a minute, I can't let him
be in control. He can't just throw money at me and expect me to do what
he wants. Then again, this is a rare opportunity. As long as I keep

"Well, well, well," she said at last. "You do surprise me, Kuno-
baby. And that's not an easy thing to do. If I do take the job, it will
be the understanding I will still attend college. I want the degree."

Kuno nodded. "That is a noble goal."

"And I may have additional requirements and conditions that will
need to be met before I sign any contracts," she added.

"They shall be met," Kuno said simply.

Nabiki smirked. [Well now, this could very well be
interesting.] "I don't know if the world is ready for this new you.
Goodnight, Tatewaki-kun." She winked at him and left.

Kuno looked through a window and into the starry sky. [I
wonder, has the one for me been under my nose this entire time?]

In her room, Nabiki couldn't stop smiling to herself. [It's
about time that pompous, arrogant, baka came out of his dreamworld. Not
that I'm attracted to him at all, but this will end a source of grief
for my sister and my soon-to-be brother-in-law.]

She climbed into bed and flicked off her desk lamp. [Of course,
this job might help. I'll need to establish a reputation in the business
world and that's not easy to do as a woman. So I will need to work
closely with Tatewaki, but it will be a strictly business relationship.
Yep, just business.]

By the time she went to sleep, she had almost convinced herself
of that.


"I know," the lady in blue replied. "It's the third one."

"'Death of a kami, death of a demon, death of a human with great
magical power,'" the caretaker quoted.

The lady nodded. "Saffron, Galfgar, and Garon."

"But the text does not speak of what else they need."

"Even I do not know. All we can do now is concentrate on our

The caretaker looked up. "The Kuno family madness is gone. You

She shook her head. "No, not now. Tatewaki has almost
recovered, but Kodachi is still in trouble. She must progress to a
certain point before I can help her."

"But what about your hu-"

She cut him off. "I cannot help him now, either. No matter how
much I want to. For now, all we can do is wait."


Author's Notes:

Well, this concludes this story arc and many questions remain. Who is
the master that Galfgar talked about? What do Kuno, Saotome, and Tendo
have to do with it? How will Kuno cope with his situation? What has
happened to Kodachi and Sasuke? Will Kuno and Nabiki be a workable

With the exception of the last question, I know the others. I do see a
possibility of a relationship between Nabiki and Kuno, though time will
tell if it will work. Let me know your thoughts. Takahashi has said
Ranma and Akane are the only real couple in her series, so I'm kinda
experimenting with the others. If you think two particular characters
should get together, let me know which ones and why. I plan on bringing
a lot of the characters, who've appeared in the manga and anime, into my
series, so anything's possible.

Oh, and I could really use pre-readers for my stories. Just remember,
your suggestions could alter the story!!!

This fanifc written and brought to you by Brad aka Kaiphantom

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