Calm's Sorrow

A Magister Negi Magi: Negima! and Ranma ½ crossover

By: GraysonPaladin, the author formerly known as Paladin13

Inspired by: Kamon772's "The Tough Badgermole and the Chaotic Horse", written with his permission

Disclaimer: I GraysonPaladin do not hold the rights to Ranma ½ and Negima, those belong Rumiko Takahashi and Ken Akamatsu, respectively. I do own any OCs except for Aura, the little bundle of joy belongs to Kamon772.

Summary: Who is Nodoka Saotome? Who was she before the birth of Ranma? What made her the person that she is? Whatever happened to Nodoka Miyazaki? Why did she disappear after Negi's confession? What if these two women, a Mistress of the Blade and a Mistress of the Book, are one and the same?

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Chapter Two: A Future Rekindled

A few days after the reunion a storm blows into the Tokyo area, rain pounding the small house of the Saotome family. During one of the lightning flashes Yue can see a figure lying out on sidewalk in front of the house.

"Mommy," Yue calls out, "there's someone out there."

"Are you sure dear?" Nodoka peaks out the window as a flash lit up the figure, "Yue-chan go get some blankets."

"Of course mommy."

Nodoka opened the door and entered the storm, the rain soaked to her to the bone as she reached the figure. She lifts the figure into her arms and runs back to the house. Inside she sets the figure down on the couch, the light of the room revealing that the figure is in fact a young girl around ten years of age, with dark blue-black hair. After stripping the girl out of her wet clothes Nodoka wraps her up in the blankets that Yue pulled out then left to the kitchen.

In about fifteen minutes the girl opened her brown eyes, she painfully turns to see a small red-head sleeping peaceful next to her. "Where am I," she moaned.

"You are at my home, I am Nodoka Saotome and that is my daughter Yue" Nodoka answered stepping back into the room carrying a mug a hot chocolate. "Here drink this," she hand the mug to the girl.

"Thank you," she takes a sip of the liquid, warmth flowing back into her body. "I am Akane Tendo."

Nodoka sits down in a chair next to the couch, her eyes staring levelly at Akane. "Now why would a young girl like yourself be caught in a storm this late in the evening?"

Akane gulps, "I ran away from home. Mama is gone, daddy doesn't care anymore, and, and …" she begins to cry. Nodoka starts to comfort Akane, until the young girl fell back asleep.

After pulling a blanket over the sleeping children Nodoka leaves the room to find the phone and phonebook. In a few short minutes she finds what she is looking for, flipping thought the book she comes across the only Tendo listing in the residential section of the book, she dials the number and waits patiently through the ringing.

"Moshi Moshi, Tendo residence, Kasumi speaking," came a pleasant voice form the other side.

"Um, hello this Nodoka Saotome, I am wondering if you are missing a young girl named Akane."

"Yes we are, were is she, is she all right," the Kasumi started babble out question.

"It's ok," Nodoka said trying to calm her down, "she is at my home, she is alright except for a possible case of hypothermia."

"Thanks you Saotome-san, my sister has been missing since this afternoon."

"No thanks is needed Tendo-san, though with the weather the way it is I'll bring Akane home in the morning.

"Of course Saotome-san, we will see you then."

With a click Kasumi hung up the phone leaving Nodoka in silence, the only sound heard is the rain pounding on the windows.

The next morning Nodoka along with Akane and Yue entered a large estate on the outskirts of the ward. Looking around she can see a perfectly groomed lawn, an elaborate koi pond, and a two story house with attached dojo. To Nodoka it is all very eerie seeing how 'perfect' it all seemed.

After they reached the door Akane opens it and rushes in. "Onee-chan, I'm home," she calls out.

Nodoka and Yue follow the young girl in to the house. After they entered they stopped shortly when they see Akane hugging an older girl. The older girl looks up at her guests, she lets go of Akane and approaches Nodoka.

"Good morning Saotome-san, I am Kasumi Tendo. Thank you for bringing my sister home," Kasumi said with a bow.

Nodoka returns the bow, "you're welcome Tendo-san."

When both of them released their bows Nodoka got a good look at the teenager's face. No not a teenager but a young woman. Those eyes are like those of an adult, she is hiding something behind that smile. On the surface I can see sense of serenity, but underneath there is pain and sorrow.

"Please call me Kasumi, Saotome-san. If you would like you may join us for an early lunch as payment for helping Akane."

As if on cue Yue stomach growled in hunger, "well I guess the answers that question," Nodoka said embarrassed.

With a nod Kasumi leads them from the entry way and into a small living room adjacent to the entry way. Looking around the room Nodoka couldn't see a thing out of place, like the outside of the estate the inside is just as eerily perfect. Seated at a table in the center of the room is a young girl with short brown hair, she is about a year or so younger than Kasumi. Also at the table is an older man with long black hair, a neatly trimmed mustache and dressed in a brown gi, currently he is reading a newspaper and not paying attention to the world around him.

Nodoka frowns at him, he is obviously a single parent but still I'm more attentive to world. It's like he doesn't even care. She is quickly brought out her thought when Kasumi introduces her and Yue to the Tendos.

"Saotome-san, Yue-chan this is my sister Nabiki and my father Soun. Daddy, Nabiki this Nodoka Saotome and her daughter Yue, they helped out Akane last night."

Soun looks up from his paper at Nodoka, "Saotome any relation to Genma Saotome?"

In her mind Nodoka frowned, something doesn't feel right, she thought. "Yes he is my husband."

Soun smiled at the answer, "so how is my old friend and training partner?"

She narrows her eyes at the man, "I don't know I haven't seen him in four years since he took my son on a training trip."

"Good to see that Saotome is keeping the Art alive."

Before Nodoka could retort Kasumi enters the living room with a large platter of food. Lunch was fairly subdued though Nodoka did ask a few questions about why Akane ran. Apparently the previous day was the three year anniversary of her mother's death. The young girl was very close to her mother at the time of her death, on the surface Akane took Hikari Tendo's death the hardest. The elder Saotome also observed the other Tendos during the meal. Kasumi acted too much like a housewife for her age, periodically Nodoka could see the façade slip and see the inner turmoil. Nabiki on the other hand seems to be the more level of the sisters, even though her eyes were sizing up Nodoka like a piece of meat. Soun unfortunately reminded Nodoka too much of her husband, while he appears to be a strong and talented martial artist he is also a lazy as Genma. Frankly she is amazed that he was able to raise three daughters by himself for so long.

"Girls can leave Saotome-san and me for a bit," Soun asked.

"Of course daddy," Kasumi replied as she ushered her sisters out of the room.

"Yue why don't you go play with Akane," Nodoka asked. Yue squealed with delight and took off after the youngest Tendo. Nodoka turns back to Soun, "so what do you need to talk with me about?"

"I know you said that you haven't seen Saotome in over four years, but perhaps you have heard from him or from your son?"

"No I haven't since that day."

"Oh shame, well perhaps I could know a bit more about his son?"

While Nodoka is a very patient woman, this line of questions is started to try her. "Why are you so interested in my son, a son that for the most part I never go to know sine my bastard of a husband took off with him over seven years ago!"

Soun gulps, "well ten years ago Saotome and I went off for a round of drinks, we decided that for our children to wed and join the two halves of Anything Goes."

"I see," Nodoka said simply. "So my husband thought it was best for me not to be included in such a discussion." Her voice was level but as cold as the starry void.

"Well such decisions are too great for a woman to understand," Soun said hopeful that the discussion has ended.

"Too great for a woman to understand, dear God I have seen things that you can't understand. Why can't I understand this, I am Ranma's mother, I have raised my own daughter by myself while holding down a full time job."

"But this is the for the sake of the Art, women are too weak to understand such things like martial arts."

Nodoka looks at the man in disbelief, woman too understand the martial arts. Setsuna, Kaeade, Fei Ku and the others could easily kick Soun's ass. "What about your daughters, you can't force this on them."

"For the family's honor they will do what is necessary."

Those words seemed to have punched Nodoka in the gut. She has heard those same words before, right after her father found out about her pregnancy. She quickly pushes those memories into the back of her mind.

"I guess there is no way to change your mind then," Nodoka said as she stands up. "I must take my leave then, good day Tendo-san."

She leaves Soun behind, collects Yue and thanks Kasumi for the meal. Of course Nodoka had some trouble prying Yue from Akane, the two of them became friends or even sisters. Only by promising that Yue can visit them did the Saotomes finally leave.

Over the next few months the Tendo Sisters and the Saotomes become very close, the Sisters finally got a new maternal figure with 'Auntie' Nodoka and a fourth sister with Yue. Nodoka got three new 'daughters'. During the weekends the Sisters would watch Yue while Nodoka did her time at the library, and at least twice a week the elder Saotome would fix dinner for the Tendos.

Over time the Sisters started to open up to Nodoka, and started to tell her about their lives before she helped Akane. Before Hikari Tendo's death Soun used to be one of the finest martial art instructors in Nerima Ward, the Tendos were a very happy family. But after Hikari's death everything fell apart. Soun became so overwhelmed with grief that he started to neglect his dojo and his family; as a result he lost his students and daughters. Akane started to become angry at the world, except to a select few, if Nodoka didn't appear when she did Akane would have never reign in her anger. Nabiki retreated into herself, fearing the hurt that would come if she made any new friends. Putting up a cold façade; she started to manipulate those around her and became the sole source of income for the family. If her 'Auntie" hadn't stepped in Nabiki would have lost the rust of many people and would have crossed the ethical and legal line.

Kasumi was by far the worst off. She hid the pain of her mother's passing beneath her serene smile. She unfortunately had to grow up before her time, at the age of ten she had to become a homemaker. Without Nodoka's help Kasumi would have surely snapped under the great pain, stress and sorrow bearing down on her heart.

About a year after she met the Sisters, Nodoka decided that she would try to gain custody of the Sisters. The Sisters agreed to the idea especially after it was revealed that Soun had not just arranged a marriage between them and Ranma but to the son of a wealthy French family for the price of a meal. Even with his mistakes as soon as he found out about Nodoka's plans, Soun fought every step of the way. That is until Nodoka brought her petition for custody before the courts.

Fortunately with the help of the courts Nodoka and Soun reached a compromise. Soun gave up custody of the Sister and had to reopen the dojo; Nodoka gained custody but had to move into the Tendo estate, the Sisters became Saotomes in all but blood and name. For Soun he gained a chance to redeem himself, while Nodoka gains three new daughters. Because Nodoka had to move into the Tendo estate she opened her old house for renters as another source of income.

Time pasted, and things changed. Shortly after moving into the Tendo home Yue headed for Mahora, hopefully to be protected from her estranged father. Within two years Kasumi entered high school in Nerima, one thing she thought was long out of her reach. The family moved on, no longer fearing what the future will do. But these happy times were not to last, two year after the moving in Nodoka will get the news that will devastate her.

"Moshi Moshi, Nerima Public Library, Nodoka Saotome speaking," Nodoka said as she answers the phone.

"Auntie this is Nabiki," her voice uncharacteristically shaky.

"Nabiki-chan what is it, shouldn't you be at school?"

"I am at school Auntie but I have some bad news. Something has happened to Akane."

"Nani," Nodoka asks. Akane she knew was in China for a class trip.

"Auntie she… she…" Nabiki's voice started to break as unseen tears flowed down her cheeks, "Auntie she was kidnapped in China."

The phone slipped from her hand as the shock sets in, "No… no… not again…, not again, I can't lose another child." Nodoka blacks out and collapses to the ground, the patrons of the library called for an ambulance and Nabiki shouting over the phone.

June 13, 2023

Nerima Ward, Tokyo, Japan

Late afternoon a teenager with yellow and black bandana walks frustrated though the streets, clad in only a pair of swim trunks and a t-shirt he grumbles as he tries to find out his location. At his side is a young panda cub.

"WHERE THE HELL AM I NOW," the teenager shouted.

The panda cub tugs at on his trunks, he sees that the cub is holding up a sign that shows them looking in both directions confused.

"Thanks I guess, Aura," the teenager replied, not excepting an answer to that question.

The sign flips showing a picture of the cub along with a black haired young man, and a young woman, all three looked angry. "Hey I'm sorry, it just happened as we got caught up in a crowd and I lost sight of Ranma and the others. Toph usually notices when I fall behind, and stops me from wondering off. But she was asleep on Ranma's back"

For two girls that can't swim, they certainly had a good time at the pool, the young man thought. "Huh, what is it Aura," he said as the cub gets his attention.

The cub holds up a sign showing the young man looking at a dojo.

"No it's unlikely that we will find Akane or Shampoo at the dojo, since we have no idea where we are. So the chances of Akane being at that dojo are pretty slim."

His midnight-blue haired friend has a thing about dojos, as whenever she saw one she has the sudden urge to visit and challenge the masters.

Shaking her head Aura flips the sign so the arrow points upward at a sign in front of a dojo, the dojo sign reads 'Saotome Dojo'.

"Toph must be rubbing off on you, you picked up on things the rest of us would miss," the young man said, and then he lets out a sigh, "Aura just because the dojo has the same name as your brother doesn't mean it's in your family."

"Excuse me did you just say that panda cub is a Saotome," a voice asks from behind them.

Turning around they see a tired woman with long auburn hair hanging loosely in a ponytail, she is dressed casually with a large duffle bag slung over her shoulder. All in all she looked like that she just got off a long trip. Ryoga was about to say something when Aura tugs on his trunks again.

She holds up a sign with Ranma's picture on and an arrow point to the woman.

Aura seems to think that this woman is related to Ranma, and her nose is hardly ever wrong when it come to identifying family. So this person might be able to help up get back home, he thinks.

"Excuse me Ma'am, if you don't mind me asking, are you related to a Ranma Saotome or a Haruna Saotome by any chance," he asked

"No I don't mind, in fact Ranma is my son and Haruna is my sister-in-law, my name is Nodoka Saotome." Nodoka is puzzled by the question, "how do you know them?"

"I'm…" the young man began to say before he was interrupted by Aura, who somehow changed into a young girl.

"Mommy," the girl yelled as she hugs Nodoka.

"Mommy," Nodoka repeats back, shocked as this girl certainly couldn't be her daughter as Yue is safely at Mahora and she has red hair not black and white.

The young man recovers from the interruption, "wait you are Nodoka… then you must be the same Nodoka that Haruna-san has been trying to get in touch with for months."

The woman looks thoughtful for a moment, "I see. Perhaps it is best that we discuss this at my home. I think that the three of us need a rest from traveling, and perhaps you can tell me your names?"

"Of course Ma'am, I'm Ryoga Hibiki."

"I'm Aura, Kaa-san."

She leads him the estate that the dojo is on. They continue to talk as the approached the front door.

"So Aura you are my son's half sister correct," Nodoka asked.

"Yep, Ranma is my Nii-san. He is really strong and nice and best friends with my Nee-san!"

"I see," Nodoka said levelly, "so my idiot husband once again contaminates the gene pool." She sees Aura's eyes grow big, "no don't take it as an insult to yourself. I cannot judge you for the sins of your father." She sighs, "So who is this other sister?"

"Actually Toph, the other girl, is not Aura's sister. She just looks up to her as if she is," Ryoga explains.

They kick off the boots and shoes and entered the living room.

"You two are talking as if you lived with him. My son has been missing ever since my idiot of a husband took him away over seven years ago."

"Daddy? You know where Daddy is," Aura asks since she has never seen her father before, only heard stories about him.

Nodoka raises an elegant brow, "You tow have never seen Genma," she asks, the two children nod their heads.

"I met Ranma six months ago, he was only living with his Aunt Haruna, along with Toph, Akane, Aura and one other girl," Ryoga told her.

Nodoka's eye grew large at what Ryoga just said, "Did you say Akane and Ranma are in Japan?"

"Yes they are," Ryoga said, "you know Akane?"

Nodoka smiles, "of course this is her family home," she waves her arms at the home. "Kasumi," she calls out.

A young woman with long brown hair enters the room, "oh Auntie I didn't know you were back."

"I just came in. Kasumi can you get this young man and my new daughter something to eat and let them clean up while I use the phone," Nodoka said as she gets up and walks to the door.

"Of course Auntie," Kasumi said with a smile, and then she frowns for a moment, "something the matter Auntie?"

"Nothing is the matter Kasumi, quite the opposite really. They is the bearer of wonderful news, my son and Akane has been found."

"Oh my, that is indeed wonderful."

"Excuse me for a moment Ryoga-kun, Aura-chan, while I call Haruna," Nodoka leaves Kasumi, Aura, and Ryoga behind. When she reaches the phone she dials Haruna's number.

After a couple of rings someone picks up. "Yo! This is the Saotome Residence. Haruna is not here right now, so you are going to have to leave a message."

Nodoka frown at the rude tone from the other side, "can you tell me when she's going to be back? It's a rather urgent matter that I wish to speak to her about."

Aura ran up to Nodoka and took the phone from her hands, "is that you Toph?"

"Aura," Toph shouted. "Hey where are you, we've been worried sick about you. I'm stuck here waiting for you with Akane, and Shampoo is getting on my nerves."

"I'm at my mother's house," Aura said happily.

"China," three voices yelled from the other end, Aura had to pull the receiver away from her ears while Nodoka turned on the speakerphone.

"That idiot took you all the way to China. How in the heck did he do that in two days," Toph asks.

Nodoka's patience is starting to wear thin and interrupted Aura, "I can assure you that she is not in China. This is Nodoka Saotome, and technically I am Aura's mother since Ranma is my son and her half-brother."

"Well I'll be sure to tell Haruna when she gets back… whoa," Toph's seemed to disappear.

"Aura, stay right where you are, make sure Ryoga doesn't wander off either!" A new voice said over the phone, "I'm not going to fail my class project me and him are assigned just because he got lost."

The new voice seemed to resonate in Nodoka's mind, even if the voice sounded much deeper and older she will always know who it belongs to, "Ran…ma?" Nodoka whispered it was first time in seven years that she has heard her son's voice.

"Sorry about this, Ryoga has almost no sense of direction and get lost…" Ranma's voice was cut off as a loud thump was heard.

Nodoka and Aura glanced at each other, confusion and unease shadowing their faces. Yelling and loud thumping can be heard from the other end, soon two other voices stared shouting. Nodoka sighs as the weariness from her trip started to return as the adrenalin faded. Sensing that no one was going to pick up the phone she hung up and slumped in a nearby chair. A minute or so passed when the phone rings.

"Moshi Moshi, Saotome-Tendo residence, Nodoka Saotome speaking."

"Nodoka-chan this is Haruna."

"Haruna-chan, it's good to hear you again. It's been a while," Nodoka replied.

"Same here Nodoka, it has been a while," Haruna said. "Where have you been all this time. I haven't been able to get a hold of you," Haruna said before shouting to someone in her home.

"I was in China looking for my son and Akane," Nodoka told her, "I just got home, but not after getting some interesting news. I meet a young man and girl, A Ryoga Hibiki, and an Aura Saotome. They tell me that Ranma is back in Japan with Akane."

"I meant to tell you sooner but I couldn't get in contact with you. I found Ranma and Akane a few months ago, along with Aura."

"From the sound of your voice there is something more."

Nodoka could hear Haruna sigh on the other side, "yes there is," Haruna said after a moment. "I also found three other girls with them. Two of them were apparently with the same group that got Akane and also Ranma. They are Shampoo and Toph, skilled martial artists and very good friends of your son. Toph was the one who answered the phone. But I need to warn you Ranma, Akane, Shampoo, and Toph are suffering from some memory loss, but don't worry it should be temporary and Ranma and Akane knows who you are."

"Oh dear, and the other girl I'm guessing is Aura?"

"Hai, Genma managed to once again contaminate the gene pool. Please don't hold Genma against her, Aura is very sweet and looks up to Ranma, though her past is just as screwy as your son's. Nodoka do you want me to pass the phone to Ranma so you can talk with him?"

"No there is no need Haruna-chan, how about we meet up tomorrow morning at Nerima Station."

"Sounds good, oh and if Ryoga is still there make sure he doesn't get lost. See you tomorrow Nodoka-chan." With a click Haruna hangs hung up the phone and walks back to the living room to find the rest of the Tendos taking their seats at the table. They look up at her and see the large smile threatening to split her face.

"Everyone I have some wonderful news," Nodoka announces jovially, "by tomorrow the family will be reunited." She starts to tell them all the news; by the end of breakfast not one face was without a smile.

Early the next morning Nodoka is sitting in Nerima Station with the Sisters, Ryoga, Aura and Soun. It is a foggy morning, with very few people up this early. Nodoka is engrossed in an old Honorverse novel and just as she gets to the climatic ending of the Second Manticore-Havenite War when a train pulls in from Minato Ward. Closing the paperback and slipping it into her purse she looks up at the platform as the train opens its doors. Walking out onto the platform is a sight she never thought she would ever see, a tall, black haired, young man with steel-blue eyes dressed in red and black.

"Ranma," she whispers.

Ranma Saotome exits the train with Akane Tendo, Shampoo, Toph, and his Aunt Haruna. Once on the platform he spots an auburn haired woman in a kimono looking at him. As he gazes into her brown eyes he recognizes her. He has seen this woman in his dreams; she is the guardian of his mind, the one who chased away the nightmares.

"Mom," he mutters.

The two of them take off towards each other, meeting halfway and collapsing into each other's arms. Nodoka and Ranma embrace each other tightly, tears falling freely.

"My son, my son you have returned to me," Nodoka sobs out. "You're home, you are finally home and I'm never letting you go again."

"I'm home mom, I'm home," Ranma chokes out.

After so many long and painful years, Mother and Child, Calm and Chaos, are finally reunited, and no force on Earth will ever separate them again. Calm's Sorrow finally lifted from her heart.

*****

Paladin's Notes: Well thus ends "Calm's Sorrow" a side story to Kamon772's "The Tough Badgermole and the Chaotic Horse," which I totally recommend for you all to read. For me this story was so much fun to write, heck it got me to get back into the Negima manga. I would also like to say that this is the first time that I really used the honorifics, hopefully I got that right, if not tell me. The book that Nodoka was reading at the end is "At All Costs," by David Weber, and the battle she is at makes battles in Star Trek look tame. For any differences of the last few scenes between TBCH and Sorrow is mostly due to the difference between Kamon and my own writing styles and our vision on how it happened. There will be more added to this, mostly side stories and interludes.

Questions, Comments, Concerns, just drop me a line through a review or a PM I'll get to ASAP. GraysonPaladin sighing off!

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