Ranma casually walked into the room, calling out, "Hey Nabiki, I was
wondering if-"

"Get out!" Nabiki yelled from were she lay on her bed, her body curled
into a fetal position, "GET OUT NOW!"

"Nabiki...?" Ranma asked hesitantly, "You OK...?"

"I TOLD YOU TO GET OUT!" the girl screamed again, a tremor of pain in his
voice.

Instead of listening to the girl, he quietly closed the door and stood
there silently. A few moments passed before Nabiki's body began to
shake, the sounds of choked crying wracking through her body. For a
moment, he stood there, uncertain, then slowly he walked over, his bare
feet not making a sound as they treaded across the floor. An instant
more he hesitated, then he gently put his knee on the bed, and put an
hand on her shoulder.

The moment she felt his hand touch her, she flinched a way, yelling at
him in a half hearted, broken voice, "I told you to go away!"

"I've never been one for listening to people," he replied with a shrug,
"So you gonna tell me what's wrong?"

"I'm going to make you life a living hell for this Saotome!," she yelled
at him, still hiding her face in her arms and knees.

"Like that would be anything new," Ranma countered, then his voice took
on a sterner tone, "Now tell me Nabiki. Now."

"No. Get out of here now Saotome," she demanded desperately, then added
in a pleading voice, "Please, just go."

"I'm not leaving," he responded firmly, "Look at me Nabiki."

"No!" she yelled desperately, pulling herself into an even tighter ball.

"If I have to I'll make you look at me Nabiki," he countered firmly,
"You know I can."

"No, don't look at me, just don't look..." she pleaded.

His hand reached out and took hold of her shoulder firmly, his face
grimacing as he felt her wince and try to pull away, only to find his
grip inescapable. As she continued to mutter desperate, terrified
protests, Ranma slowly pulled her body to roll over so that her body now
faced his own. With a sigh, he spoke again, "Come on Nabiki, just look
at me."

"Please," she begged, "I don't want anyone to see me like this. No one
can see me like this. NO ONE!"

Ranma sighed and grasped her by both of her wrists, gently pulling her
resisting arms away from her legs. He ignored the hits his body took as
she began to thrash out at him, her legs striking his body again and
again. Raising both her arms above her head, he gathered both wrists in
one hand and used his other to reach down and gently cup her cheeks, the
warm liquid of her tears moist against his palm. Then slowly,
deliberately he lifted her face, until he could look at her clearly.

"Oh god..." he whispered in shock.

Nabiki's face was a mess, one eye blackened and swollen shut, the other,
glaring red with tears. Her bottom lip was swollen and split, a thin
trail of blood running down her cheek, the paths of both tears and blood
running over a collection of bruises scattered about her cheeks and jaw.
A row a thin cuts slashed along her right cheek, as if someone wearing a
ring had backhanded her. Her hair was wild and disheveled, soaked in
tears, sweat, and something else. He looked down at her form, her
clothes torn in disheveled. In his mind, an almost audible click
sounded.

"Who did this Nabiki," he half growled as he gently released her arms, a
screen of red coming over his eyes.

The girl immediately curled back into her fetal position, her tear
choked voice sobbing, "I told you not to look at me!"

"Nabiki..." he began, "What happened...?"

"I told you, go away!"

Instead of responding, he reached out once more and gently put his hand
on her shoulders, and gently pulled her towards himself. She resisted,
struggling as much as she could, but his grip was inescapable, and soon
she felt herself leaning against his chest. For an instant, his hands
released her shoulders, but before she could react, she felt his arms
wrap around her, warm, and comforting, holding her with a gentle
security that told her that he wasn't going to let go. For a moment she
struggled, but then she couldn't hold back the pain any longer and her
entire being suddenly existed for one reason alone, to cry hot tears of
pain in his arms. As she heard the soft soothing sound of his voice, her
body slowly relaxed, her legs slowly sliding away from her body, until
they hung limp before her. With a care she thought he didn't have he
gently turned her around and pulled her close to his chest, his shirt
soon damp with the salty liquid of her tears.

At last she mumbled, "Why...? Why did this happen...?"

"What happened Nabiki?" he asked gently, "Who did this?"

"It hurt... I wanted to get away but he wouldn't let me... I screamed,
but nobody heard me, then he... he... stuffed them into my mouth, full
of sweat and blood... I couldn't scream anymore..."

"Who did this to you Nabiki?"

"I was there to talk to Hiroshi... He was supposed to delivering
something to me... Then... then he showed up... Hiroshi was scared of
him... Tried to stop him... but he couldn't... Then he grabbed me...
took me away... Then... then he..."

Then the day's events finally took their toll on Nabiki, and her mind
simply slipped away. He could feel the sudden change in her body as her
muscles went limp, and her breath grew slow and even. For a few moments
he held her in his arms, then he gently laid her down on her bed,
pulling a sheet over her body. Rising to his feet, he cast one look down
at the sleeping girl, her battered face slack and peaceful, then walked
out the door, quietly closing the door.

For a moment, he stood in the hall, uncertain of what to do, then,
slowly, he began to pad down the stairs, his body tensed like a
predator, ready to strike out at its prey at any moment. After he made
his way into the kitchen, he calmly picked up the phone and dialed a
number, when he heard an answer, he spoke up, "Doc, we have a problem."

"No, I'm fine, so is Akane. The problem is Nabiki. No, she didn't get
hit by a stray attack, it's worse than that. Doc, I'm pretty damn sure
she was raped. Her body's been beaten pretty badly too. Yeah, we need
you here as soon as you can get here, I'm the only one here with her at
the moment. No, the rest of them don't know about it, they're all out of
the house. I'm about to be going to. No Doc, I'm not going to do that.
Just don't let her family know what really happened. No, she doesn't
want anyone to know about it, I had to pry it out of her. I'm sure you
can think of something. Yeah, I'll be careful. Thanks, bye."

As he hung up the phone, Ranma stared out into the yard for a moment
then began to run out towards it, vaulting up on the wall, then jumping
to the rooftops, a very specific place set in his mind.

***


Ranma gently rapped his knuckles against the solid frame of the wooden
door, his mind filled with worry and revenge. After a moment, a woman
slowly opened the door, her face slightly red, as if she had just wiped
away fresh tears. Hesitating a moment, he asked, "Um, is Hiroshi
here...?"

"I'm sorry Ranma," the woman replied, her face threatening to break out
into tears again, "He can't come out right now... He's indisposed."

"That's kinda why I'm here," Ranma said, his deep blue eyes staring into
her's, "I need to talk to him."

"I'm sorry Ranma, but..."

"Ma'am," Ranma interceded, the fires of his anger sparking into his
eyes, "I've got a friend who was just raped. She's asleep right now, and
the only person who could know who the guy that did that to her is your
son. I have to see him now."

"R-raped...?" the woman responded, her eyes wide with fear, "Oh the poor
girl..."

"And the bastard didn't stop there," he continued angrily, "Her face is
looks like it was used as a punching bag, covered in bruises and cuts. I
don't even know what this guy did to the rest of her body, but...
whatever is was, it wasn't good."

"A-all right," the woman finally agreed stepping aside, "He's in his
room..."

"Thank you ma'am," he responded as he quickly removed his shoes and
entered into the house, quickly finding his way to his friend's room. He
paused at the open doorframe, gently knocking upon the wood to alert
Hiroshi to his presence.

"Who's there?" a voice called out hesitantly, a tremor of fear within
it.

"Just me Roshi," Ranma replied as he stepped into the room and got a
good look at this friend.

The boy's body was covered in bandages, a splint on his right arm and
leg, a patch of white gauze over one eye. The boy seemed to stiffen
where he lay, then suddenly burst out, "I'm sorry! I tried Ranma! I
tried! But I couldn't stop him! He just kept beating me...!"

Ranma noticed the fiery red line the rose upwards from his friend's
chin, virtually identical to the ones on Nabiki's cheek, He shook his
head and told the boy, "Relax man, you did all you could..."

"I tried! I really did Ranma!"

"I know Roshi, don't worry about it."

"Is she... Is she all right...?" the boy as hesitantly, his uncovered
eye wide with fear.

"Physically, she'll heal," Ranma responded, "You both will... But as for
her spirit...? Dunno, but Nabiki's a strong girl..."

"Oh god he really did it..."

"Who is he Hiroshi? Who did this?"

"That new kid, Jiro... something or another... I heard he used to do a
lot of the same things that Nabiki does at his old school, only a lot
worse... I guess he figured he could do the same here."

"Do you know where I can find him Roshi?" Ranma asked, visualizing Jiro's
face in his mind.

"The arcade," the boy blurted out, "He's always at the arcade after
school until it closes."

"Thanks man," Ranma responded, putting his hand on the boy's shoulder,
"He'll pay. Don't you worry about that..."

"Not for me man," Hiroshi replied fiercely, "Get that bastard for what
he did to Nabiki. She may be a mercenary, but no girl should have to do
through that. NONE."

"He'll pay, I guarantee." Ranma finished, then slowly walked out of the
room, casting his friend one last look before heading back to the front
door. When he saw Hiroshi's mother standing there uncertainly, he spoke,
"He'll pay. For what he did to both of them."

Wordlessly to woman nodded, bowing deeply to Ranma, her voice almost
breaking as she spoke, "T-thank you Saotome-san."

"I'll be back to check in on him when I'm done... And call me Ranma."

"Thank you Sao-Ranma, for everything."

"I'm not done yet," the teen responded as he walked out the door, "Not
until that bastard has paid."

Hiroshi's mother stood in the doorway, watching the boy's back as the
martial artist began to vault from roof to roof, a grim goal held firmly
in his mind.

***


"I'm telling you Hiro," a dark haired teen grinned cruelly to his
companion in the alley next to the arcade, "Soon, I'm gonna be running
this new school!"

"What about Nabiki...?" his companion, a nervous boy with shaggy brown
hair asked in a frightened tone, "She's not gonna like you trying to
move in on her turf..."

"Fuck that bitch!" Jiro laughed, "In fact, I already did! Put that ice
bitch in her place, her little lackey Hiroshi too!"

"What did you do Jiro...?" Hiro asked, his face gone white as a sheet.

"I told you, I put that bitch in her place... Damn she's got a hot bod
though! I really enjoyed her..." the dark haired teen replied with a
smirk.

"You... Raped Nabiki...? And beat up Hiroshi...?" the brown-haired boy
asked, his voice wild with fear, "Do you have any idea what you've
done...?"

"Like I'm scared of anything that bitch could do to me," Jiro snorted,
"I took care of her once, I'll do it again."

"Nabiki's not the problem," Hiro snapped back, "Ranma is."

"Watch your tone man, you wouldn't want to end up like Hiroshi now would
you...? Or maybe even worse...?" Jiro threatened, "And who the hell is
the Ranma fucker?"

"You... You don't know who Ranma Saotome is...?" Hiro responded in
disbelief.

"Heard his name a few times," Jiro shrugged, "Nothing special."

"Nothing special..." Hiro repeated, then suddenly burst out laughing
madly, "You're a dead man Jiro. A fucking dead man!"

"SHUT THE FUCK UP!" Jiro growled, backhanding Hiro across the jaw, his
thick gold ring leaving a cut across the boy's cheek, "I'll take care of
that Ranma punk if he tries anything! He's gonna learn that Furikan is
MY school now!"

"Is that a fact?" a new voice echoed through the alley way, cold and
mocking, "For some reason, I don't think that's gonna happen."

"What the hell? Who's fucking there?!" Jiro demanded angrily.

"Heh, that would be Ranma," Hiro sneered, "And he doesn't sound happy."

"You think I'm gonna be scared of some punk ass little bastard that's
hiding in the shadow?!" Jiro yelled, "Come on out and face me man to
man!"

"You're no man," Ranma's voice responded with a growl, " You're not even
human. You're scum. And you, you sadistic little sack of shit are gonna
pay for what you did to my friends."

"So says the guy that won't even face me! Come on, where you hiding!?"

"I'm right behind you asshole."

Jiro whirl around in shock to find himself face to face with a pissed
off Ranma Saotome, whose blue eyes glowed brightly with an azure light.
Before Jiro could fully react, Ranma slammed his knee into the boy's
gut, smiling at the gasp of pain that Jiro let out before quickly
slipping into a sweep the knocked the shocked boy off his feet. In an
instant, Ranma was on him, pulling the boy's face inches from his own,
causing Jiro to stare, terrified into the burning orbs of Ranma's eyes.
With a bestial growl, Ranma swore, "You're gonna pay for what you, and
you're gonna pay in full."

Before the terrified Jiro could respond, Ranma's hand lashed out, and
all the boy knew was darkness.

***


Groaning in pain, Nabiki slowly opened the one eyes she could, and
looked around the room. There, sitting next to her was Ranma, a look of
concern on his face as he spoke, "Easy Nabiki! Don't try to sit up, Doc
says you need to just keep off rest for a while."

"What...?" the girl responded in confusion, then her face cracked as she
remembered what had happened, the painful memories storming through her
mind, "Oh god..."

"Its all right Nabiki, he won't touch you again," Ranma said fiercely,
taking her hand in his, "That bastard's getting what he deserves."

For a moment, the girl stared into his eyes wildly, as if refusing to
believe what he had said, then, she slowly calmed down, until another
look of horror crossed her eyes, "Oh God, Hiroshi..."

"Roshi's fine," Ranma assured her, "A little worse for wear, but he'll
recover. You're the one we're both worried about..."

"Oh god, my family..."

"Don't know about this," Ranma finished, "Only me, Doc, Hiroshi, his
mom, Jiro, and this Hiro guy know. And I made sure the last two won't be
telling."

"What.. What did you do...?"

"Lets just say that I borrowed something from Cologne to make sure that
he learned first hand what he'd done feels like," Ranma responded with a
cold, savage grin.

***


Groaning, Jiro pushed himself up from where he lay, his bare skin lying
on the ground of a dark alley. Chuckling to himself he spoke, "That's
all that punk's gonna do? Dump me naked some place?!"

"Well looky what we got here boys," a cruel voice suddenly called behind
him, "Looks like we got ourselves a nice little play toy for the evening.
You know better than for a whore like you to be out here dressed like
that girly."

Jiro was confused as a group of men slowly walked out of the shadows,
his body feeling strangely alien to him. He slowly looked down at his
naked body and screamed in shock. He had breasts! His hand shot down to
his crotch and he felt around, his dick was gone! His scream grew even
louder as he realized what had happened to him.

"Screaming won't do you any good bitch," the man smirked, "Not here.
Now, its time for us to have some fun."

Jiro could only whimper in abject fear as the man's shadow fell over him,
the terrible knowledge of what to come echoing through his mind.

***


Cologne shook her head as she leafed through the yen notes Ranma had
given her. Why the boy had wanted a packet of instant Nyannichuan, she
would never know. But at least she got some money out of the deal.
Shrugging, Cologne turned back to the ramen, calling out to Shampoo
that another order was ready.