Author's Note: I changed the absolute SHIT out of this story.

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or Ranma 1/2.

The More People I Meet, the More I Like my Cats

Chapter 1

Transmutation: recreation, or mutilation?

Traveling through the Land of Wind were two missing-nin shrouded by sand. One ninja was a lean man with long blonde hair pulled into a half ponytail. The other was a hunched-over man with a crooked brow. Despite their differences, each wore a straw hat with paper tassels hanging down over their faces and a high-collared black cloak designed with little red clouds.

"Sunagakure," the gruff voice came from the man hunched over as they walked leisurely towards the Village Hidden by Sand. He quietly slipped through the village's great gate as his partner stayed behind. However, his appearance was noticed by two sand shinobi who shouted his way. He waited until they stepped out of the village's perimeter and knocked the two out before returning to his partner.

"They saw me," Sasori muttered as he disposed of the bodies. "Even with these two gone, their clamor will probably bring more."

"They didn't see me, un," Deidara responded.

Sasori turned to his partner with a disapproving look. "You're not going alone."

The blonde brought up his hands in defense. "Sasori, my man, come on. I can get it on my own," he assured.

Sasori glared at him. "Fine, but don't make me wait. You know I hate waiting."

Deidara smirked as he watched the groggy, hunched man flit away while he himself turned towards the village. He flashed a toothy grin before jumping the gate and speeding off to the Kazekage's mansion.

"Tell me what's new on the One-tail," Pein, sitting atop a stone throne, asked Deidara.

"He and his little sib posse are going to the Byankala Mountain Range in China," the blonde smirked. "Apparently it's home to some famous training ground, Jusenkyo, if I heard right, hm."

"When do they leave?"

"Tomorrow," Deidara grinned while spinning a tiny clay bird between his fingers.

Pein answered briefly, "We'll leave today."

Deidara stopped twiddling with the clay and brought his clear beryl eyes to his leader's. "All of us?" he asked skeptically.

"Everyone will meet at the training ground," he answered simply.

The blonde looked irritated at the fact that he and Sasori would not be traveling alone, but said no more.

Pein informed the others of their mission and immediately set off in their respectable pairs.

"I don't understand why all of us have to go," Deidara complained as he jumped off a large cedar branch. "I thought the One-tail was our mission, un."

Sasori didn't show much concern. "As long as they don't slow things down."

But it would have been a lie to say the puppet master was not skeptical himself.

A rustle from the treetops, following a quick swoosh was heard from behind as two ninja appeared next to them.

"Hey, you're not the only one with complaints," Kisame growled as he and Itachi jumped beside them. "Last thing I want is to travel with a brat like yourself." Kisame stared directly at Deidara.

"Kisame, my man. I couldn't complain about you," the blonde ninja smirked. "You're much more bearable than Master Sasori."

The puppet master scowled and rolled his eyes at his partner's immaturity. Kisame merely chuckled while Deidara grinned back before shooting a swift glare at Itachi.

They continued their journey for days and nights—running, walking, and sailing until a grand mountain range came into view.

"We're in China!" Tobi exclaimed enthusiastically and pointed at the mountains.

"Of course we're in China, idiot. We passed the border days ago," Black Zetsu scolded.

"Panda! Panda! Where's the pandas?" Tobi ran off looking for pandas while Zetsu slumped after him.

Pein and Konan were already inspecting the training ground when the rest of the Akatsuki arrived. They admired the many hot springs surrounding them.

"Jusenkyo training ground," stated Hidan. "You sure the Kazekage is coming here for training and not for vacation?" He scoffed as he looked at the steaming pools.

"I wouldn't mind dipping in one of those springs myself," Kisame said longingly as he sniveled over his reflection in the water.

A low, gruff voice spoke up. "When does the One-tail arrive?" Sasori asked rather impatiently.

Pein didn't answer, and he didn't need to because at that moment a large panda, running precariously on two legs, burst out of nowhere, stopping in the middle of the clearing to catch his breath.

"PANDA!" Tobi yelled as he tried to run towards the panda but ended up knocking into Pein, which created a chain reaction as he knocked into Konan, and she knocked into Kisame who knocked into Itachi. The water made a kerplop sound as all four of them splashed into the hot pool.

"Oops," Tobi pressed a finger to where his lip would have been under his mask.

"Does this mean we can go in the hot springs now?" Hidan asked. Zetsu sent him a glare.

"Could you calm down for five minutes!" Deidara growled at Tobi. "Now look what you've done!" He mercilessly grabbed Tobi in a head lock and threatened to drown him in the hot spring.

"Zeeeeeetsu, Deidara-senpai is trying to hurt me!" Tobi pouted.

"If you keep pushing my patience, I just might let him."

Tobi sighed and admired the panda's black and white fur from Deidara's death-hold. "Woooah. Zetsu, that big fat panda looks just like you!"

Multiple veins bulged from Zetsu's forehead. "Deidara, do what you want with him."

"My pleasure," he sneered.

Deidara meant to throw just Tobi in the spring, but Tobi tripped on seemingly nothing and flailed his arms around, knocking the blonde, the puppet master, and the plant Akatsuki members into the spring with him.

"Now Deidara-chan gets to go in?" Hidan remarked. "Why does the youngest always get to have the fun?"

Kakuzu observed the bubbling surface. "I wonder why they haven't come up for air yet," he pondered.

Hidan ignored his comment. "I'm gonna go in." He took off his cloak, leaving him in only a pair of black trousers. "You goin' in too?"

The panda (who had been helplessly watching the whole scene unfold as he caught his breath) held up a sign reading "DON'T GO IN THE HOT SPRING", but neither Hidan nor Kakuzu paid attention.

"No." Kakuzu gave Hidan a hard glare.

"Come on, just one little dip won't hurt." Hidan inched closer to Kakuzu and put his hand on the top of his back.

"You push me in and I'll kill you."

"What kind of threat is that?" smirked the shirtless man as he tried to push him in.

By this time the panda was frantically waving his sign, but quickly dropped it as a crazy girl bolted out of the bushes and chased after him.

Annoyed by Hidan's hovering hand on his back, Kakuzu flipped his lid. "That's it, Hidan!" he yelled before attacking his partner.

A bear roar and the cries of death threats could be heard in the distance as the two wrestled on the ground. After a few slices to the stomach and blows to the head, Hidan successfully rolled them both into the hot spring. The two sunk down into what they found was a very deep spring.

Kakuzu decided to decapitate Hidan right then and there, but when he reached out his hand to wring the Jashinist's neck, he found his palm to be a furry fluff instead. Bubbles obscured his vision as he looked around and realized why the rest of the Akatsuki had not resurfaced yet.

In front of him were nine squirming cats struggling to swim for their lives. It took a while, but they all managed to scramble out of the water before running out of oxygen.

Each feline stared at each other in disbelief.

"Why the hell are we cats?!" Hidan roared.

The other newly transfigured cats could not decide whether to howl their lament or stand silent in their misery.

"The hot spring..." Sasori, his voice youthful again, said as he peered at the puddle they just escaped from. "Just what kind of place is this?"

"A cursed mountain filled with cursed hot springs," hissed Kakuzu. "I'll kill you for pushing me in." He struck Hidan with the most fowl glower his face could contort into.

Pein silently seethed as he realized his plan had been outsmarted by the Kazekage.

"As if this mission couldn't get any fucking worse," Hidan deplored.

A sickening crack reverberated above their heads as somber clouds spit golf ball-sized hail upon them.

Each cat sourly glared at Hidan.

"Let's get out of the storm," Pein muttered.

They padded into the closest shelter they could find which was a hot, dank cave, the walls sticky and wet from perspiring steam. The cats huddled into a circle, mewing amongst themselves.

Minutes passed when some of the cats realized a certain black-furred feline was missing.

"Where's that brat Tobi?" Black Zetsu hissed.

"Who cares," Deidara bluntly stated. "That idiot can get as far away from me as possible."

The other members agreed to stay put, but just as they were getting comfortable, slight tremors shook the earth, causing the surrounding walls to begin collapsing.

"Move!" Pein urged the others.

The now running cats raced for their lives, avoiding a boulder-crushing death from the falling rocks. They kept running until the small tunnel grew into a large cavern with a high ceiling. This den was much like the rest of the cave, except the air was colder and fresher, if that was possible.

Rocks crashed into the entrance, blocking the Akatsuki from the outside world before ceasing. Kisame and Deidara tried nudging the rocks but were at a loss with their current state.

"Well fuck!" Hidan snarled, his teeth baring in a wry grimace. "We can't do anything in these shit bodies!"

Pein and others ignored his cursing and proceeded to inspect the cavern.

Kisame nodded to a figure up ahead. "Tobi's over there."

The cats trotted to their fickle member, but his black form dissipated into the air right before their eyes.

"Hey, how'd he do that?" Deidara asked surprisedly as he gazed at what lay ahead.

In front of them was an expansive hot spring, looking more like a lake. The water was clear blue and seemed to emit a faint glow in the dark cave. The more Pein looked at it, the less hot it looked. He dipped a paw in the water, only to instantly shy away.

It was ice cold.

Faint ripples rung from a spot farther into the pond, colliding with the ripples left from his paw.

"I think he jumped in," Pein analyzed.

Before anyone could answer, the pond emanated a fierce blue glow, revealing an archaic design bubbling from beneath the water's surface. The earth began to shake once more, and the ceiling started to rain rocks.

"Not this again," Hidan muttered.

Boulders upon boulders crashed towards them with no where left to go except into the lake.

"Everyone jump!" demanded Pein.

With no other option, the nine cats jumped into the cold, glowing lake and prepared themselves for the impending rocks.

Nine cats spluttered their heads out of the water, gasping for air. The rocks they had been expecting never came, so they resurfaced. Scrambling out of water for the second time that day, the Akatsuki hoisted themselves out of the pond and onto the soft earth.

"Where the hell are we?" Hidan complained.

There was no longer hard rock beneath them; instead, damp dirt brushed their paws. They weren't in a cave but they seemed to still be underground. A light at the end of the tunnel egged them onward, and they kept walking until they stepped out to a blinding light, and a wave of fresh air and an abundance of trees.

"What is this place?" Hidan asked, a little bewildered.

"Everything's so... crisp, and... 3D," Sasori commented.

Hidan disconcertedly stared at Kakuzu. "You look weird."

"Of course I look weird, I'm a cat," Kakuzu seethed.

"No, I mean you look even weirder than a normal cat. I can see every fur on your pelt, and your eyes are all glassy."

The others actually found some sense in Hidan's notions, noticing the strange differences in color and shadow in this world than the ones in their own world.

"It's like we're in some artist's fantasy land," Sasori murmured to himself.

Deidara rolled his eyes and muttered something about how the only way this place could be art is if he blew it all up.

After spouting over the alluring forest and its strange colors, the Akatsuki cats continued their journey, wherever that may be.

Having traveled for some hours, the cats stopped to take a rest by a strange black river.

"What is that thing?" Deidara flicked his tail towards the mysterious black trail.

"It looks like a road," Itachi stated.

"That's a road?" Kisame implored. "Why's it black?"

The others shrugged, and Hidan cursed under his breath, "Fucking weird place."

Their ears perked at the sputtering sound of rumbles and hums from a distance.

"Rain again?"

But it didn't sound like rain.

Hidan padded onto the black trail and stared at the approaching fiend. The cats' ears lay flat as the sound came closer and a giant monster loudly sped up the black river. A loud squeal followed by a faint hiss echoed throughout the forest as the monster abruptly came to a halt.

The cats jumped a few steps back, eyeing the monster machine. It spit out a man who quickly ran to the side, finding a limp cat underneath a wheel. He scooped up the breathless Hidan and brought him inside his monster machine. Pein signaled for the others to follow. The cats jumped into the back of the machine as it swallowed Hidan and the man, then sped down the black river once again.

Spitting and sputtering of a tired truck engine echoed throughout the woods, its broken melody chiming with mother nature's song. The truck stopped in front of a modest animal hospital, and a man haphazardly stumbled out with a limp cat in his arms. The hospital doors swung open as the man barged in like a screeching banshee, earning him frightened stares from the waiting pet owners.

No words were needed as the vet rushed the seemingly dying cat to the emergency room while two nurses prepared to take blood tests.

"There's no pulse," one of the nurses said.

The vet frowned. He gave the blood tests a brief glance before staring at the lifeless animal.

"There's something odd about this cat," he put a hand to his creased brow. "It's definitely dead, but the blood is still active, along with some other organs."

Deciding to let an expert in deceased bodies resolve the matter, he gingerly picked up the cat and walked three rooms down the hallway. He stopped at an open room where a young man dressed in a white lab coat sat typing away at an old computer. He swiveled his chair around as the vet knocked on the door.

"Dr. Love, I'm sorry to bother you, but would it be possible for you to perform an autopsy on this cat?" the vet asked hesitantly. "It's rather strange looking."

"A cat?" the doctor exclaimed in contempt. "I'm not a vet, that's your job."

"I understand, but this is no ordinary cat, and I'm not as experienced in the field of pathology as you are."

Dr. Love sighed and glanced at his watch. "Well, I've got time to kill. Bring him here."

The veterinarian smiled with relief as he set the cat on the medical table. "Thanks, Doctor, I really appreciate it."

The doctor waved him out and inspected the dead cat. Besides the bloody flap of skin hanging from it's stomach, the cat really was strange looking. Its fur was a dull silver, and its eyes, after prodding them open, were a murky violet. He wondered what type of genes caused this rare eye color. There wasn't much to do now but cut it open.

He lifted a scalpel from his metal tool tray and carefully incised a small section of the cat's chest. His mind must have been playing tricks on him, though, because he could have sworn he saw it breathe. Shaking the thought aside, he continued incising, but the tricks played on as he heard a low grumble in its throat. The doctor placed an ear to the heart, listening for a beat, although, he couldn't really hear anything over the racing heartbeat of his own. He leaned in closer, and the cat's head jerked up, lunging for the doctor's face. Dr. Love jumped out of his skin and stumbled backwards into his medical cart.

"This cat's not dead!" he affirmed, half to the vet (who was in a completely different room) and half to himself.

The cat's ears fell flat and he lowly hissed at the doctor before taking a swipe at him.

Dr. Love successfully dodged the blow, but knocked over his medical cart with his flailing arms, spilling tubes and vials of liquid onto the cat. The cat steamed and the sound of releasing vapor filled the room. Next thing he knew, Dr. Love found himself face to face with a bulky, silver-haired man wearing nothing but... well, nothing.

"What the hell? Why am I naked?" the cat man angrily cursed. His violet eyes cursorily scanned the room before settling on the doctor. They zoomed in on his black slacks and white lab coat.

"Gimme your clothes!" he pointed at the doctor.

Utterly terrified, the doctor ran for the door, but the cat man was too quick. He grabbed the doctor by the waist and tugged on the sides of his pants, pulling them down a few inches.

Dr. Love cried out and pushed his hands away, making a run for the door again, but the cat man grabbed his white lab coat. The doctor spun around, trying to twist him off, but slipped on the wet floor and fell face first on the cat burglar's chest.

"Get off me!" the man yelled, prying the doctor's arms away from his waist. The man started to steam again and that same vapor from before released into the air, shrouding the room. Once it cleared away he was yet again a cat, to the doctor's astoundment and utter confusion.

His eyes widened as the cat surged towards him, claws sheathed. He ducked and grabbed a broom and swatted at it until the cat scurried out the door. As the feline vanished, Dr. Love's faded voice could be heard in the distance, "Damn vet bringing cats into my office. Cats!", and the sound of his footsteps echoed throughout the halls as he walked to the bathroom to clean up.

After running for a few minutes, Hidan skidded abruptly in the hallway, his legs feeling heavy and stiff from being run over. He pressed his body close to the wall and mulled over his thoughts. Those liquids the doctor spilled on him turned him back into a man. Who in their right mind would find the antidote to their cat-shit bodies and not grab it while they had the chance? A pussy would, meaning a man without a penis. He would have to go back, for the sake of his mother fucking cat penis.

Stealthily, he crept back into the doctor's office. He poked his head in first, not fully entering until the doctor was no where to be seen. He trotted over to where the vials of liquid had spilled, but the spot was dry. Damn doctor must have cleaned up the mess after he was so hastily swept out of the room. He nosed around the office a while longer but was at a loss. He couldn't find so much of a drop of chemical anywhere. Ready to give up, he spied a letter with the doctor's address scrawled on the front. Deciding that would be the best thing he could find, he snatched the letter in his mouth and clomped out the door. However, he wasn't alone as two vets noticed his presence and shouted at him.

Hidan's legs truly felt like deadweights now as they carried him away from the raving doctors. Damn vets, he thought. Damn world! Just what the fuck is this place with black roads and ugly monster machines that run people over?

During his thoughts he outran the vets, looking behind him to see no one following. Satisfied, he slowed his pace to a trot as he neared the exit which was a strange door that opened by itself as he walked towards it. Outside was filled with the same blinding light that he could not seem to get used to, and the freaking thing that crushed his body was standing right by, taunting him.

Now what?

He heard a hiss from the thing's direction and looked over to see the whole Akatsuki cat clan hiding behind the goddamn monster. He reluctantly padded over and explained to them how he had turned into a man in the doctor's office and back into a cat again.

"Did you take the antidote?" Pein inquired, as Hidan had expected.

"No," the silver cat spat a piece of paper onto the ground. "But I got his address."

Whether Pein was pleased or not, he had no choice but to accept the information because at that moment a group of vets burst out of the hospital and chased them back into the woods.

Author's Note: I updated this chapter... again. /shot Only to add stuff though.

Just a reminder to my good ol' readers that I deleted the other chapters because they are no longer relevant to the story.

Anyway, tell me what you guys think! Does this chapter clear up some questions that were left unanswered in the last story? I know I did not make it very clear on how the Akatsuki turned into cats, so I wanted to write a whole chapter about it.

Don't forget to review!