In Another Dimension:
Within a building, hidden away someplace, a trio of people sat, all looking at the same document that one had brought. They were sitting at a rather ornate table within an oddly unassuming room. Their chairs were also matching with the table with other such chairs littered about the large table as well. The majority of the seats being empty and all on the other end of a table so that the three could sit close together and converse about what they were going over.
"What in Hild's name is this?" One of them hissed after finally reading it over for a third time, throwing it down in disgust. "That poison ended her existence long ago and she shouldn't exist."
"We know that." One of the other two said with a weary sigh. "This is an official update from Yggdrasil that I managed to sneak by."
"What I'd like to know is how her soul managed to survive all these years." The third, a female, growled lowly. "That was what the virus went after, her very soul."
"Well, we can't very well go and kill her again, not with the Doublet System." The second sighed again, slumping down in his chair.
"Damn the Doublet system and damn the Truce." The first hissed once more. "She might not have an opposite yet, and if we strike soon enough, we can destroy her and her kin."
"Are you sure that is wise?" The second asked.
"As long as Hild-sama doesn't find out." The third growled lowly again, this time with a bark of laughter. "I say we prepare to strike soon."
"Fine. We can't waste any Mazoku though...we'll need someone to conjure up some Youma." The second had a hint of a smile on his face.
"Don't worry, I have just the person to abuse." The first grinned, his teeth sharp and shiny.
All three chuckled once again as they planned some more. They didn't care if this started a war, after all, that's what the enjoyed. Suffering and Death to the end.
"My name is Selene. Goddess of the Moon."
An understatement would be to say that everyone was shocked at that kind of revelation. A few of the Senshi were trying to work their jaws from off the floor while some of the others just kind of stared. Usagi was a combination of the two, shocked beyond belief really.
Akane didn't really seem to be phased. Honestly, this was Nerima.
Suddenly Usagi's brain rebooted and she started to splutter out words. "Wait, what? How? You're really...? But what about...?" she trailed off, looking to the rest of her Senshi for support but got blank looks instead. Even Setsuna blinked owlishly at her. Finally, a bit more brain power entered the arena and Usagi steeled her resolve. "Does that mean you're Queen Serenity too?" Oh, please, let it be so...
The reaction Selene gave to that question was a sad smile and a shake of her head. "I am afraid not, my dear."
"Oh..." Usagi sounded so very disappointed at that.
Then the second hammer dropped.
"My only daughter was named Serenity. Named for which the sea upon the moon which I loved so dearly, and where near she was born."
This got a new round of stares, and even Akane joined in on this time. Akane, however did her usual Akane like thing and mentally over-reacted, going through a bunch of scenarios in her head that had nothing to do with the situation. She had started to splutter, her face going slightly red at the thought of Ra...
Suddenly, the youngest Tendo daughter froze in her thoughts and tracks, her face going pale. 'Not Ranma, Selene. Not Ranma, Selene. Not my Martial Artist but the Goddess of the Moon.' Ranma didn't do anything, it was all Selene. 'But it's his body!' she mentally screamed at herself. Well, his female body at least, but that wasn't the point, was it? It was the same voice, though refined, same looks, though with silver hair instead of red...then again, that golden upturned crescent moon on her head...
Then Akane realized all attention was on her from her spluttering, "S-sorry, old habits die hard." Her voice was weak, but she was telling the truth. A little smile formed, though it was mostly half-heartily, as she motioned a little towards Usagi. "I think she has some more questions though."
The smile that lit Usagi's face could have brightened a room, however it turned a bit more serious as she looked over at the silver haired teen. "What happened to you then...? All any of us..." she trailed off, looking at Akane for a split second, but she also saw Selene just smile sadly, though, even that emotion didn't reach her eyes as they seemed to lose a little light.
"Even as a Goddess, I fell ill, it can happen to the best of us." She still had that soft smile on her lips. "My daughter, Serenity, filled in where she could. In the end, however, I died." There it was really, cut and dry, just like that. Though, the blood of sadness was somewhat as she direct her gaze towards Setsuna. "While I was bedridden, my daughter befriended a girl her age that had been brought to the Moon. The girl's father and I were good friends. His name was Khronos and he knew I was dying, and to help ease the pain of my daughter, he bought his own so they would hopefully become friends. In one of my last few days, I watched them playing together and I knew my daughter wouldn't be alone after I had died." Finally, Selene bowed her head low, a few tears in her eyes. "Thank you for being there for my daughter, Setsuna, I am in your debt, more than you could possibly ever know."
There was silence between all involved again.
Selene getting up and moving towards the green-haired Senshi of Pluto before wrapping the taller woman in an soft embrace and for the first time since her best friend had died, saving them all from destruction, she openly wept. Tears streamed down her face as she whispered, "Thank you..." over and over and over.
They smiled at each other before Selene pulled away, looking to the other girls in turn as they all introduced themselves, from the first planet to the last. She thanked every single last one of them for what they had done before it finally came to Usagi who had her head bowed down, her own tears streaming on her face as she gave her own introduction. "Usagi Tsukino, Daughter to Serenity. It's good to meet you...Grandmother."
Akane chewed on her thumb as she watched the scene unfold before her. She could barely believe what was going on, and if it wasn't for past experience she sure as heck wouldn't've believed. Even after Saffron and all that nonsense, it was still hard to even think the way she was. After they got home and now this transformation change of Ranma's, a lot of different things were invading her mind that she just didn't want to think about. In fact, due to the way she was acting, she had caught a few of those girls looking at her with hesitation.
At least Ranma wasn't hugging the exotic green-haired lady now, but it was almost worse in that Ranma was now hugging the blonde girl with the same blue eyes as his. 'No, She's hugging Selene, not Ranma hugging her.' Yet at the same time, she had the strange urge to 'beat the pervert', after all, this was her Ranma! Another stray thought invaded her mind about was just said a moment ago. 'But she's her Grandmother, right? Aren't they the same age? ARGH! This doesn't make any sense..!'
Of course, Akane had been thinking the wrong things when it came to the other girls. She thought they would look at her as competition which was far from the truth...well, Minako briefly considered it until she watched the transformation. Ranma was a total hunk after all...but besides that!
"Maybe...we should show her?" Usagi asked, breaking into everyone's thoughts.
"Show her what?" Selene asked with a cant of her head.
Everyone blanched at that. Were the Senshi active back then? Probably on some planets, but who would need Senshi for a Galactic Kingdom being ruled by a Goddess? Case in point, that might be why Earth didn't currently have a Senshi after all. Though, the looks from the girls caused Selene's mind to stir at the implications and she gave the girls all a critical eye and thought back to what she had seen in some of Ranma's memories before the first transformation.
"Akane." She spoke suddenly.
"Yeah...?" The Tendo asked nervously.
She eyed the teen with a critical eye for a moment. "What gets said in here, stays in here. If Nabiki talks about this to anyone, lives will be in danger, and I mean the lives of people that can't protect themselves like those here in Nerima can."
Akane gulped and nodded her head in agreement at that.
"Now, you are all the...Senshi. Correct?" Selene turned her gaze back to the pack of girls, ignoring Akane's small gasp. "Planetary Warriors, usually a Senshi, though in some odd cases, someone else may appear." She gestured to the girls for Akane's sake. "All assembled have their own guiding force and unlike regular humans, they use Mana as a source of their power." She paused and looked over them with a tilt of her head. "Apologies, but I'm not sure which planet each of you rely on, outside of my Granddaughter and Setsuna that is."
"Yes." Ami spoke up. "Ami Mizuno, Senshi of Mercury."
"Minako Aino, Senshi of Venus."
"Rei Hino, Senshi of Mars."
"Makoto Kino, Senshi of Jupiter."
"Hotaru Tomoe, Senshi of Saturn." There was a brief pause as Selene looked almost guilty at the youngest teen who just had a sad smile on her face before the others continued
"Haruka Tenou, Senshi of Uranus."
"Michiru Kaiou, Senshi of Neptune."
"Setsuna Meiou, Senshi of Pluo."
"Usagi Tsukino, Senshi of the Moon."
Akane was stunned. "Howbuwha?"
Selene smiled at that. "Well, there's no sense in wasting the day away. Akane, could I have the hot water? It would not be fair to have Ranma cooped up until I have my meeting."
"O-o-of course." Akane babbled and quickly got up, rushing out of the room.
Selene continued to smile until Akane was out of the room, then her features straightened and the smile dropped. "It is good to see you all, but I'm afraid my appearance will cause complications for you."
"Grandma?" Usagi asked softly.
"Simply, I should not exist. I don't know why I exist, and I do not wish to put your hopes up...after my meeting, I might continue my non-existence." She spoke in a matter of fact tone, as if she was discussing the weather.
"No!" Rei burst out. "We can't allow something like that to happen!" The others all agreed with her sudden decree, even if Setsuna was strangely quiet about it. "We'll beat up anyone who tries to take you away."
"Oh?" Selene arched a silver eyebrow and smoothed back her pigtail slowly. "You would beat up Kami-sama himself?" Several of the girls paled at that. "Yes, that is whom I am meeting with, children." She got up and moved closer towards the group, giving a shocked Rei a gentle embrace. "Actions speak louder than words, however, sometimes one most know when to proceed quietly and accept the situation. If Kami-sama wills it, I will embrace his choice." A sad smile flickered it's way onto Selene's lips at that. "Of course, if I could, I would be honored to stay." Another soft pause before she continued. "That may not be the only problem. Because of what I am, until a final choice is made, we may be attacked by Mazoku."
"Demons?" The girls eyes all widened.
"Hai. Oh thank you for the water, Akane."
"Where was I? Oh yes. Mazoku might be willing to attack. I know not what has transpired in the past, and they are more than likely to send Youma, or worse, to my mana signature. It might be best if I was just hidden away for now." With that, she upended cup of hot water over her head while closing her eyes.
Like last time, the transformation seemed to be fighting something foreign and nothing seemed to happen at first. Slowly Selene turned into Ranma as their height grew and female details gave way to male ones. The change seemed to speed up after a few more seconds and finally stopped after a full twenty in total. When Ranma opened his blue eyes, he looked at all the girls who were staring at him with wide eyes, blinking his own a few times and getting a confused look on his face. "What?"
Selene's ghostly whisper answered his question, but it didn't seem to be acknowledged. Usagi seemingly pulled out a small compact from nowhere and that's when the words finally penetrated his brain.
The change was supposed to be full and complete. This last one was not. Oh sure, his body was fully male, his features were all his and his alone, but there were a few minor differences. Changes that shouldn't exist but still did, and suddenly Ranma wasn't so sure of things anymore. There were two standout visual differences in what should have been. His black hair now had strands of silver clumped together here and there, as if he dyed it somehow or another. The second big difference was his forehead, and the upturned crescent moon had not fully disappeared, it had just faded and looked like it was an outlined scar upon his head.
The last difference was not an outwards appearance but an inwards one that only Ranma could feel, and it made him feel...off. Something had changed, something was different, something was really freaking weird. He felt lighter somehow, better, maybe even faster and stronger, and there was something else, a feeling he didn't really understand at first. Then it finally came to him.
Ranma Saotome felt...happy?
The sudden sensation of elation was quickly consumed by a sense of dread as he once again went over his features and spoke without thinking. "Man...what else can go wrong?" Finally, Ranma realized what he said and let out a low groan of annoyance at his own stupidity and the sensation pinching at the back of his neck.
The gathered Senshi, and one fiance blinked a few times at Ranmma before they all heard a shout of "Now where am I?" With that being yelled, Ryoga turned the corner and promptly walked into the Dojo, Ranma facevaulting with a full body twitch.
"Ryoga? What are you doing here?" Akane asked.
"Akane? Why are you in Hokkiado?" The Lost Boy queried, causing the Tendo to sweatdrop at that.
"You're in the Dojo at my Father's home. Didn't you have a date with Akari?" Akane blinked a few times while helping Ranma up slowly. Ryoga just dropped to his knees in despair and whimpered in his newest depression. "There there, Ryoga...why don't I call Akari for you and let her know you're here?"
"T-thanks so much Akane." Ryoga nodded dejectedly and pulled off his large backpack and set it next to himself with a thud.
"So, where y'been man?" Ranma asked suddenly, his interest in the situation growing.
"Uh. Well. I dunno. I got some souvenirs though." He pulled out a couple from his bag and handed them to Ranma. "What y'think?" He blinked and suddenly realized a whole bunch of cute girls were sitting in the room as well, causing the Lost Boy to blush faintly as he pulled out more to show them as well.
"Got any food?" Ranma asked.
"Of course not."
"Damn." Ranma grumbled while he looked at the trinket in his hands. "How the hell did ya manage to get t' California, New York, and Toronto and back in two days?"
Ryoga blinked and then snapped his fingers. "No wonder everyone was speaking English. Besides, aren't those places just West of Tokyo?"
All the untransformed Senshi blink and stare at that comment as the conversation between the two martial-artists turns to that exact topic of why Ryoga goes anywhere without a real map while the fanged male defended his precious map saying it did what it needed to do...even if it was hand drawn.
Akane walked back in at the end of the conversation with a smile. "Akari knows where you are and she'll be coming to pick you up tonight."
"Thanks Akane." Ryoga smiled.
"Uhm. Question. Is this kind of thing normal?" Ami asked with a slightly raised hand.
Ryoga, Akane and Ranma all looked at each other for a few seconds and rolled their shoulders in a shrug all at the same time. "It's a Nerima thing." Akane said first with Ryoga nodding in agreement.
Ranma nodded as well but cocked his head to the side, listening to something. "Nerima is for crazy and weird like Minato is for monster attacks while Chiyoda is known for it's used bookstores and paper users, and..."
"They get the point, Ranma." Akane said in exasperation, letting out a small wince at she rubbed one of the bruises on her face.
Of course, Ryoga picked that time to start paying attention to his surrounding and his eyes narrowed to slits as he finally spied the bruises on Akane's face and arms. He started to splutter and his aura became visible for all to see, rounding on Ranma, he started to point, but the words weren't coming out properly. Eventually, he managed to overcome his righteous indignation and spoke with a growl. "What the hell happened?"
"Kuso...you noticed, huh?" Ranma grumbled to himself.
"Who did it, Ranma..." Ryoga seethed.
"Hey now. I tried to stop her, but they got it in their head that it was the right things to do."
Ryoga reached over and grabbed the front of Ranma's shirt, dragging his rival closer. "Tell me."
"Well, y'see. The thing is...my girl side has her own personality now and well..."
"Don't take me for a fool!" Ryoga shoved Ranma back suddenly. "I'm not an idiot Ranma! How dare you hit Akane!"
"Now wait a second! I didn't do nothin'!"
"Ranma! Prepare to die!" Ryoga pulled the Umbrella off of his back and thrust it at Ranma's face.
Of course this caused almost all of the girls to back off suddenly as the boys started to circle each other, Ranma edging towards the door to take this kind of thing outside and not ruin the dojo again. "Dammit, Ryoga. It wasn't me!"
WIthout saying a word, Ryoga started to attack with his umbrella while Ranma weaved in and out of the way, not fighting back. The pig-tailed martial artist kept evading The Lost Boy's attacks as he moved further and further away from the girls. Soon enough, Ranma found his exit and jumped back forcefully, landing near the Koi Pond the Tendo's had in the yard. "Man, he's got a temper..." Ranma grumbled, ducking out of the way of another thrust from the umbrella. "Oops. Need to stay away from the pond too." He didn't want to drown in the time it took to transform into Selene, and despite everything, he would keep Ryoga's secret.
Soon enough, the fight was really on and the Senshi had followed to watch. Though Haruka was sorely tempted to intervene, it was Akane and Michiru that held her back while they continued to watch as Ranma ducked, bobbed, and weaved his way through Ryoga's attacks with both umbrella and fist. Though it would seem Ryoga's temper at the thought of Akane being hurt had dissipated, there was still something that that Ryoga was holding in, it was probably the fact that Ranma seemed to be distracted, his head turning off to the side every so often just before he frantically dodged out of the way.
"Selene must be distracting him." Setsuna mumured softly.
"How can you tell?" Hotaru asked gently.
"His reactions. He's the only one that can see and hear her. She's distracting him on purpose." Setsuna frowned. "I'd guess she's trying to hold a regular conversation or something along those lines."
And it was true. It got to the point that finally Ranma snapped. "Will you quit laug...OOF!" Of course, in his brief lapse of concentration he took a right hook to the jaw, sending him careening through the air and into the outer wall of the Tendo Home.
Of course, that was enough to cause everyone to pause as they watched Ranma fall to his knees and cough a little, spitting out a little blood suddenly. Ryoga, most of all, was very confused.
"Did...I actually just manage to deck him good?" Ryouga looked at his fist and then at Akane with a small flinch. "I didn't imagine what I just did, did I?" The Lost Boy looked as his fist in amazement before looking over at Ranma who was stumbling. "You okay over there?"
"Yeah, yeah." Ranma said with a grumble, getting to his feet, not swaying a little, though it seemed like he was tonguing the inside of his cheek. "Don't laugh at me!" he turned and shouted just over his shoulder.
"No, it's not funny!" Ranma suddenly retorted after half a second. He was ignoring the crazed look he was getting from Ryoga. "No. Dammit. D'you want t' fight him?"
Back on the porch, Setsuna shook her head and pulled herself back away from the group. "I'm going to go get some tea."
"Sure...I think we're going to continue watching this, it's kind of amusing." Haruka grinned.
"Agreed." Most of the Inners nodded along with that sentiment while Hotaru and Michiru were silent.
"Excellent. I shall be back in a few moments." Setsuna gave off an enigmatic smile and turned on her heel before walking off back to the regular part of the Tendo Home.
On her way there, she spied the Panda sitting at the table with Soun, this time playing Shougi instead of their usual game of Go. Without even looking up, the Panda lifted up a sign. *How's things?*
"Could be better, could be worse." The green haired woman said nonchalantly. "I'm just here for some more tea."
*Kasumi is out.* Flip. *You'll have to get your own.* Flip. *Anything else?*Again, the Panda'd Genma didn't even look up from the board as he moved a single piece.
"I still don't understand how you can do that." Setsuna muttered, mainly to herself before looking at Soun on the other side of the board. "Sorry, Tendo-san, but can I borrow Genma for a moment to talk?"
"Of course, Meiou-san." Soun said while also not looking up.
"Excellent. Genma, let's go talk in the kitchen." The woman strode away as the Panda pushed himself back and up on his haunches before lumbering after Setsuna.
Once in the kitchen, Genma let out a soft 'growf' or a snort and worked the faucet, turning on the hot water and letting it run over his paw until he turned back into a human. The change was a lot more instantaneous than Ranma to Selene out in the Dojo. Soon enough, the bald martial artist was standing there once again. Replacing his glasses over his eyes after a second, having pulled them out of his gi. It was really odd how larger transformations from cursed victims kept their clothes on when they reverted back to human while smaller cursed forms lost theirs. Most odd.
"What?" Genma asked shortly.
"Look, you know I don't want to be here, but I'm here anyway." Setsuna replied blandly as she started heating up a kettle for some tea.
"Well, sure is a lot of good that got me." Genma grumbled. "I followed all of your instructions, did what I could and all that."
"Training started at two, I know. You put off the Neko-ken for as long as you could, I noticed." Setsuna nodded.
"Every time I talk to you, it's like we're discussing the weather instead of my boy." Genma grumbled.
"Yes, well...that's just how I am, I suppose." Setsuna turned and smiled somewhat at Genma. "I told you things would work out fine."
"Still, he almost never forgave me for that." Genma spoke softly, not really wanting to be heard. He did have a reputation to uphold. "I still regret it everyday. I'm just glad No-chan hasn't found out yet. She'll kill me."
"Oh, she won't." Setsuna said mysteriously. "Besides, outside of a few minor mishaps, you handled the Jusenkyo thing rather candidly."
"Yeah, yeah. I do have to ask though, did you know about this?" He gestured out towards the yard where Ranma and Ryoga were once again fighting.
"Honestly? Not a single bit. There was no way to predict that Selene would be reborn. It wasn't in any calculations or any news from the future. Nothing." Setsuna sighed as the water slowly heated before she finally turned to Genma and gave him a critical eye. "You know I got you to do what you did so that all of that nonsense would be here, away from from Minato. Do you honestly think that any of the Senshi could have dealt with Herb?"
"No way. Not in any shape or form." Genma sighed. "If it wasn't for the boy and the crazy stuff here, Herb would've probably been attracted to the energy being thrown around like crazy in Minato. Those girls really need to learn how to tone it down." The martial artist shook his head. "Not like I can speak for the boy. He did blow up a mountain in that fight."
"Indeed." Setsuna said wryly. "At this point, however, I've got no additional information to hand over. I'm operating cold here, and frankly. I don't like it."
"Welcome to my life." Genma grumbled.
The two of them looked out the window, watching the fight once again as the water continued to heat. The awkward silence between the two was finaly broken as the water from the kettle started to boil, then Setsuna poured it into cup. Idly she went about making herself her usual standard of green tea, all while trying to ignore the sounds of Ryoga and Ranma trying to beat each other.
"Setsuna. Why did you come in here?" Genma finally asked. "I know it wasn't for a pleasent conversation."
"It's hard, Genma. Every time I look at him..." she trailed off and a small shudder racked her body.
"There's still a chance, though you won't hear me admit it." Genma spoke quietly again.
"No. My time is up. My husband, my beloved gave his life for what he needed to do. Just because he has been reborn does not mean he is mine still." Setsuna let out a small bark of a laugh. "Thanks for the consideration however."
"Well, it's why I pushed for Akane...I really didn't think they would grow this close." Genma rolled his shoulders with a shrug. "Ukyo, he considers to much a friend. Shampoo tried to kill him to often...and really, Akane is to violent and angry. There is much hate and rage in the girl, sometimes I fear that she'll just snap one day."
"You did what you could with what you had to work with, Genma." Setsuna shrugged, swirling her tea around slowly. "You're officially relieved of duty."
The large martial artist grimaced at that last remark and let out a bone weary sigh, almost slumping over. Genma finally shook his head as he collected his thoughts. "Not quite yet, Setsuna...it's not over yet."
"Your work is done, General Saotome." Setsuna said gently.
"It isn't until I've taught him everything." Genma rebuked. "Princess Pluto." he added almost as an afterthought.
The green-haired Senshi of Time smiled amost as gently as she last spoke, finally testing her tea and giving it a small sip. "Fine then. Teach him everything you know. Then you can retire and be done with this whole mess."
"As you command." Genma gave a small bow and grinned a little as he took off his glasses. Turning the water from the faucet to cold, he dipped his fingers in it and then eventually turned back into a panda, shambling back towards the living room and the game of Shougi with Soun.
Once the man was out of earshot, Setsuna shook her head ruefully and sipped her finally done tea once more. "As I command, so mote it be. As I command indeed." Her voice went soft, almost dead as she left the kitchen to rejoin her Princess and other companions to finish watching the fight. "Here's hoping I didn't fuck everything up..." she raised her tea cup to herself in mock salute as she passed the mirror in the entrance and plastered a fake smile on her lips once she finally got back.
Notes from the Author:
Been sitting on this for a while. The fight was sucking, snice I'm horrible at writing hand to hand combat. Work much ebtter with weapons and all that. Not going to address msot of the comments and questions I got with the last chapter except for one of them.
Someone said that they didn't see this as a Ranma and Setsuna pairing, because it really isn't...I didn't know that when I chose their names that I was 'pairing' them together. I chose them, like I did for my other fics, because they're the main two characters I'm writing as. This is post canon-manga, which means that, unless something happens to Akane, she's the main one for Ranma, at this point in time.
Also, note that yes, Setsuna is meddling. It amuses me so.
I'll try and work on making the fights better, but really, my muse is more on a Naruto kick as noted by my other stories, but I won't be putting this one off for four months again like this chapter took. Sorry about that.