This chapter gets just a bit dark, not just for violence, so you've been warned.
X x x x x x
"Yo, come out and tell me why you were in my room." She called out as the alley came to an end the only thing that he could have hid behind was a metal dumpster. "I got enough perverts, rivals, and fiancées busting in on me, I don't need anymore."
"I'm here." A voice breathed from directly behind her. Spinning she just caught sight of a pair of glowing red eyes before a fist impacted the side of her face sending her sprawling backwards into a wall. Recovering and regaining her feet she took a stance. Wiping at the side of her mouth she realized she had bit her lip. "That won't do at all, I've spilled some of your blood." The voice seemed to come from everywhere at once.
"Can't have any of that." It said from behind once again and in a flash she had jumped up to twist in midair before kicking out. Her foot connected with his head and drove him into the wall this time. Landing she resumed her stance and watched for any movement. But he just stood there laughing slumped against the wall. "My you are strong." he chuckled.
"So I am, now ya gonna tell me what you were doing in my room or what?" She asked and didn't let her eyes leave him. Every fiber of her being told her that this guy was strong and he put her on edge like no one else ever had. Not Ryoga, not Saffron, not even Herb came close to this guy. It didn't help that her body was screaming at her to run, because she did not run from a fight.
"Such a wonderful night this turned out to be." Slowly he drew himself up, showing that he was at least three heads taller than her, and straightened his clothing. "Maybe I won't kill you after all." Narrowing her eyes she nearly missed the momentary flicker of his body before she was grabbed by the throat and lifted off the ground.
Gasping, she grabbed his wrist and kicked him repeatedly in the side of his chest using amaguriken speeds. He took the several hundred hits without a care and she could barely reach him making each hit weaker than it should have been. Driving upwards she started to hit his arm with her knees having no effect. Attempting pressure points met the same fate. Gasping for air, her vision started to tunnel, and her attempts at getting free grew weaker and weaker.
Releasing his wrist she gathered all the confidence ki she could and threw her hands forward. "Mouko takabisha." She whispered and the blue ki exploded in the guy's face. As the aftereffect cleared away she could see him standing unharmed, though he did look shocked. 'I'm not confident enough.' She realized.
"I'm not cruel, I wished to spare you this trauma." As her arms and legs fell limp he moved her closer to his body and brought his other hand up to run through her hair. Too weak she could only bat weakly at his hand. "Red, the color of blood." He seemed to verbally smile and smacked his lips.
"Get away you freak." She wanted to spit in his face but couldn't do it with his hand on her throat.
"This is such a dirty place, we should have done this in a nice pleasant room." The man's face spread into a toothy grin, exposing long and sharp canines. Ranma's vision began to blacken around the edges. "Maybe a Western style bed with soft sheets and pillows."
'I gotta fight, who knows what this guy is gonna do if I don't.' Trying to raise her arms up again, they only reached her waist before falling back down. Her attacker was holding her just tight enough that she remained conscious while unable to respond. Staring defiantly into cruel green eyes, her own blue ones widened suddenly as thoughts of escape fled her mind. She tried to fight but every attempt to resist the compulsion slipped further and further away.
"That's better." He purred, lowering her to ground to stand on her own feet, he had to hold her upright while blood started to return to her brain. Ranma could do nothing as he held her around the waist and adjusted her head to lean back and to the side exposing her neck. "It's time I satisfied this thirst." Ranma felt his fangs stab deep into her neck and she moaned in pain, unable to physically resist.
X x x x x x
Ranma felt someone nudge her shoulder and she rolled away from the source of the annoyance, wanting to go back to sleep. Her mind rebelled against this idea though, forcibly dragging her to consciousness.
"I said wake up." The voice repeated with far more force and her mind snapped into full alert.
Shooting up into a sitting position, Ranma rubbed at her eyes to clear out some sleep gunk. Blinking, she shook her head, and looked around. She was in a Western style bath tub, inside of a bathroom without any windows. Standing over her was a tall man in black dress pants and shirt. His face was pale and not fully Japanese, but some handsome European mix with green eyes bordering on teal.
"Who are you?" She asked, glancing down to see that she was only dressed in her tank top and boxers. The man looked familiar, like she had just met him recently, yet where she had seen him escaped her. Rubbing at her forehead with both hands, her memory wasn't right, and she could barely remember what she had been doing yesterday morning.
"I'm your Master." He introduced. "And you are my new servant."
"Master?" She wondered why he would tell her that. "Did Nabiki sell me again?"
He smirked. "Stupid fledgling, you are a vampire now, I'm your Sire, and that makes you mine."
"A vampire? That's a new one." Standing up in the slipper tub, she stepped out. The crazy man was much taller than her, the top of her head barely reaching his mid chest. "You mind telling me where I am so I can figure out how to get home?"
He frowned and Ranma immediately screamed, clutching at her head, and falling backwards into the tub. Clawing at her hair, she writhed in pain, bouncing off the sides of the acrylic basin. It felt like her head was being torn apart from the inside out, as if hundreds of bugs were eating her flesh. The searing pain finally ended and she slumped against the side, breathing heavily, in too much shock to do anything else.
"I don't appreciate your impudence." He informed her. "Now get up and get dressed, you must be hungry." Ranma didn't immediately do as ordered, still struggling to figure out what was going on. "Do not make me repeat myself."
Shakily rising to her feet, Ranma nearly fell stepping back out of the bathtub once again. Staggering out of the bathroom, she found that it was night and she was in an expensive looking apartment, with glass windows that ran around two sides, and a door to her left that lead into another room. To the right was what looked like the exit. She could make it if she went now, the crazy man with the weird mind power was in the other room.
"The clothes are in here." He called and automatically she turned from the exit to enter into the other room. The bedroom was large, with a wooden coffin laying on the floor next to a queen sized bed. The man had the closet opened and was holding up some female clothing. Seeing her, he held up a dress so that from his perspective she was wearing it. "It's too bad that you're shorter, these would fit perfectly if you were about ten centimeters taller."
"If you're going to give me clothes, I'd prefer guy ones." She tested the waters. "Or if I could use some of the hot water in the bath so I could change back." Ranma briefly wondered why she hadn't simply changed back but then reasoned that the situation was strange enough to miss the opportunity.
"You don't have to worry about that anymore." He answered. "And if you ever take that form again without my permission you will be punished."
"What do you mean?"
"Because you are still adjusting I will let your questioning go this time. But you are a draculina now and a draculina you will stay. I have no desire for even a male appearing fledgling." He smiled darkly at her. "Besides, hot water will do nothing but get you wet now."
Ranma shivered, feeling the man intrude on her mind once again, it wasn't painful just uncomfortable. When it was over, she stared down at her hands, a vision from the point of view of the man testing hot water on her while she slept. Collapsing to her knees, her mind rebelled at what he was telling her.
"Enough emotions." He threw some clothing on the bed and walked by her. "Get dressed in that, you'll feel better after you've had your first meal." Once he was out of the room, she heard him add. "Don't make me wait."
X x x x x x
Finished dressing, Ranma stared into a mirror hanging on the wall. The clothing he had picked out was a cheerful looking yukata with a flower print that could be adjusted to deal with her height, even if it meant her arms were swallowed up by the sleeves. It didn't match her mood in the slightest. Her eyes were no longer blue but the same shade of green as the man, her skin was pale to the point of being white, and she now had long, very sharp fangs.
Not only did she look different, but she felt different. She could feel her ki had been replaced by something heavy, oppressive, and very inhuman. Ranma could now feel the man in the other room, a strange presence that she was unable to shut out. Glancing at the coffin on her way out, she found the strange man sitting in a plush chair, waiting impatiently for her.
"What did you do to me?" She forced herself to ask.
"Your curse intrigued me, I was going to kill you, but I decided to satisfy my curiosity, and see if you would become a ghoul－ or vampire." He rose to his feet. "Now stop wasting time, I'm sure you'll feel better once you've had your first meal." Without waiting for her to follow he headed out the entrance, while Ranma simply stared forward in shock.
(Come) His voice reverberated in her head and she hastily grabbed a pair of slightly too big sandals to follow him down the hall way. An elevator carried them down to the ground, a ride that Ranma took in complete silence. For some reason she trusted what the man had said though she did not like any of the implications that came with it.
Exiting the lobby of the apartment building, rational thought began to become difficult when surrounded by people. She could smell them, hear them, and she wanted to have them in a way that she had never felt before.
"Control yourself." He commanded. "If you attack humans in the open you draw attention to me, to yourself." Ranma realized with a horrible moment of clarity what she truly wanted from the people around her. At first she was revolted at herself, but then the hunger she was feeling pushed it to the side.
It would have been easy to escape now, out in the crowds, but no matter how much she wanted to run away, to get away from the man, his strong presence kept her at his side. Some part of her, a very strong part, actually looked up to the man and trusted him.
She had expected them to go to someplace secluded but instead she found herself attending a sumo competition. Pressed on all sides by humanity, she barely noticed him paying, or walking around the stadium to take seats in the upper level. Gripping the plastic arm rests tightly, they started to warp and deform from the force.
"Why did you bring me here?" She asked, her teeth clenched so tightly that she thought they might break.
"I had plans to come here before I made you. I'm not going to change my schedule just because you're here." He answered. "Do you not like sumo?"
"Sumo is fine." Chewing on her lip, she didn't know how much of this she could take. Smell, sight, and hearing were all giving her a sensory overload.
"Good, calm down and enjoy it."
The competition stretched out into an eternity. She could block out the smell, apparently she no longer needed to breath. She could block out the sight by closing her eyes. But she could not stop the endless drumming of the hearts around her, not even the loud voices could stop it. 'He's doing this on purpose.' She realized halfway through. 'He's going to get me so worked up I'm going to attack someone.'
Well she wasn't going to do that. She wouldn't give in to this. Ranma would rather die than do what he wanted.
X x x x x x
When they finally got up to leave, Ranma was, no matter her resolve, ready to do what she felt like doing. Dark thoughts entered into her mind whenever she saw a person that caught her eye. Forcibly keeping her eyes on the ground, she wished to be out of the crowd as soon as possible.
"You'll be able to feed soon." The vampire who had put her in this hell said as though she should be happy.
"I won't do it, I won't hurt anyone, and you can't make me." She said defiantly as they finally reached a secluded spot.
"Silly fledgling, I could remake you into what I want. You're mine to do with as I please." He seemed more amused than anything else, turning to look down at her with a cruel smile. "Would you like that? For me to twist you into the perfect little vampire?"
Ranma took an involuntary step back, having encountered mind altering magic before, she wanted no part of it again. The vampire reached out and cupped her cheek, gently rubbing his thumb along her skin.
"I could even make you my lover, show you what you missed out on in your mortal life." He suddenly grabbed her by the hair on the side of her head and with a quick jerk pulled her close to him. "When I can, I will free you from your servitude, I took on that responsibility when I made you, until then, you will follow my orders. Or I will make it so I have no desire to let you leave. Understand?"
She wasn't hurt by what he was doing, but nodded, having no desire to become someone's willing sex slave. "Yes－ Master."
"Good." He released her hair and smoothed it out. "Without feeding you'll grow weaker and weaker, as you are now, if someone so much as waved a crucifix at you, you'd likely explode into dust."
"Can't I just have normal food?" She didn't know if she could, blood was what she wanted, but if she could get by on regular food then there was no reason to break her promise.
"No, human food is poison, now enough nonsense, we will now go find your first meal."
X x x x x x
Laying in her bed, Ranma didn't immediately get up, choosing to remain in the bathtub she now lived out of. If she could call what her life had become living. She didn't even get a pillow or blanket to make the hard material more comfortable. Ranma didn't even know how long she had been a vampire, the nights seemed to meld together into a haze of degrading tasks for her Master, and endless boredom.
The apartment that she lived in had been liberated from the previous owners when her Master had killed them. Using knowledge gleamed from the information contained in their blood he was able to make it seem like they were still here for bills and rent. He used her to get money to keep living here by having her feed from wealthy people and then empty their bank account. Ranma wouldn't mind that so much if she actually got a percentage of the money, but all she received was allowance to buy clothing, specifically female clothing.
Vampires she found out were natural shape shifters and as soon as she had learned that particular talent she had become male once. True to his word, he had punished her by going into her mind and painfully removing the image she had of herself as a male. Remembering her human life always resulted in seeing her current self. She could still become male, but it would never be herself ever again.
Sniffling, she rolled over to lay on her other side. She despised her Sire in a way she had never felt before. Not even Happosai could have caused this much hatred from her. The worst part was that thinking about leaving, what life would be like without him, was horrifying. She had asked twice now when she would be freed, and each time he had said she wasn't ready with an infuriating smile on his face telling her that he had no plans to.
The door to the room slid open and her Master walked in wearing only a towel. "Out." He commanded.
Deciding that she had spent enough of the night trying to get sleep that would never come, Ranma went out into the apartment so he could use the bath. Vampires didn't sweat much and what little they did had no smell to it. Baths were still nice though and Ranma made a point to have one once a night, hoping in a vain that the water would wash away the shame she felt from being a vampire. She also hoped that it might give her back her real body, the one she could no longer remember, but no amount of hot water ever changed her.
Getting dressed in some jeans and a sweater, Ranma headed out to get away from the depressing apartment. Even if the only clothing she was allowed to buy was in the feminine part of the store, she still dressed in a masculine way.
She took off running at high speed, using some vampire power to literally fly over the tall rooftops of the inner city. The apartment was near the Akihabara shopping area, which was where her Master usually found his meals. Ranma occasionally wandered the stores, looking at merchandise she would otherwise be able to purchase if she wasn't supporting a lazy vampire almost three hundred years her senior.
It was quite a trek to reach her destination, but going in a relatively straight path at super human speeds had shortened it considerably. Crouched on a roof overlooking the Tendo home, she could see over the koi pond, and through the open doors inside. Her family and several of the Tendos were sitting around the table talking, her sensitive ears easily picking up that it was a conversation about something at school.
This was the first time she had come back since being turned. Fear had kept her away, how would they react to what she had become? How would her Master act if he found her trying to contact them? He had stressed that to seek her past life would only end badly. She would have ignored such an idea if it didn't have a sliver of truth to it. As well as a hint of a threat.
No one would know if she got just a little bit closer. Jumping from the roof and into the yard, she melted into the shadows, an ability inherited from her Master, and slipped into the home. Watching them from the corner of the room, she wanted nothing more than to form out of the shadow, to let them know that she was still here. Struggling with indecision, she did nothing but wait for them to leave the room, and go to sleep. Moving through the shadows back outside, Ranma reformed up on the roof, sitting with her head in her hands.
'Maybe when I'm free I'll come back. Maybe then I can face them.'
X x x x x x
Laughing to herself, Ranma took the money from the ATM, and shoved it into her pant pocket along with the bank card. Her Master would not be getting this money, that leech had enough money to live in that apartment for years now. She didn't even want to go through the hassle of taking the rest of the money from the account. Especially since she had nowhere to put close to six million yen.
The cash would be spent on little things, while she would use the bank card for bigger purchases. Ranma couldn't wait to spend it though, the man she had taken it from would be found soon enough, and there would be security cameras that would come into play. Thankfully the face she now wore had no background, no fingerprints, no parents, and no identity. All anyone could come up with is a face that fit hundreds of other teenage girls who often visited the area.
Being that most of her time was spent in boredom, she looked for things to waste time. A music player was her first purchase, but then she realized that she had to get music for it, so she ended up purchasing a small laptop, and a bunch of prepaid cards to download music. They were things that she could never have afforded in her human life so casually and it would be nice to be able to just block out the world.
Wandering through the crowd of humanity, she wondered what else she could purchase. Not so much that she needed anything, she just didn't have anything, and wasn't supposed to. That was probably the main reason, to piss her Master off if he ever found out.
"Ranma?" A very familiar voice called out to her. Instinctively she looked towards the voice that had called her name and instantly regretted it. Akane took it as all the confirmation necessary to run up and envelope her in a bone crushing hug. "You're alive!"
"Do－ do I know you?" Ranma stuttered, her voice betraying her, and pulled herself away from the youngest Tendo.
"Ranma what happened to you?" Akane wasn't about to let her go, reaching out to grab Ranma's wrist.
"I'm sorry, I don't know who this Ranma is." Ranma's heart was hammering in her chest, trying to keep a neutral face, to not show how happy she was to have someone call her name. Akane recoiled, searching Ranma's eyes desperately. Ranma made the mistake of looking away, unable to meet the Tendo girl's gaze. She caught sight of Akane's friends, Yuka and Sayuri, following as if Akane had suddenly left them.
"Please, it's me Akane, what's happened? You've been gone for four months. We almost－ we were almost ready to have a funeral for you."
"Akane-san, please let me go, I do not know you." Ranma pulled as lightly as she could, trying to hide her strength from the human girl. "And you're being very rude."
"Ranma?" Akane released her, staring at Ranma with a look of confusion and hurt.
"I'm sorry I'm not the person you're looking for Tendo-san." Ranma bowed quickly and hurried off searching for a secluded spot. She didn't get more than three steps away before she felt the realization wash over Akane that she had not told Ranma her last name.
"Ranma stop!" Akane yelled. Running, Ranma ducked into narrow passage between two buildings and vanished into the shadows. The youngest Tendo followed her briefly before stopping and looking around in confusion.
"Akane." Yuka finally caught up. "She said she wasn't Ranma."
"She knew my last name." Akane answered her friend. "I didn't tell her that."
Disgusted with herself, Ranma didn't stay to watch the humans. She was such a coward. If she had any kind of courage she would stand up to vampire who had turned her and demand freedom. She would go back to her family and face the consequences of her failure that night.
Back at the apartment, the plastic bags carrying her purchases made telltale crinkling noises as she moved. Not that she could sneak them by him since he was watching television in the main room. Ranma realized that she had been too distracted by Akane's sudden appearance to worry about that.
"You purchased something." He leaned back in his chair to look at her, his eyes instantly going down to the large bag with the square box of the laptop.
"I did." She shifted her weight to one leg. "So?" Ranma decided to be upfront and casual about it.
"What?" He seemed simply curious.
"A music player and a laptop."
"If it keeps you out of the way." He turned back to the television. "Actually I believe the cable comes with an internet connection, you will have to let me use it when I wish." Taking out the laptop box in the kitchen area, she was about to open it up when he spoke up again. "Did you hear me?"
X x x x x x
Two weeks later
"Girl, more blood."
Ranma sighed internally at the request and took the empty glass to get the requested drink. Her Master had decided to show her off to another vampire that he was apparently friends with. This vampire was named Nathanial and he looked like he was in his late fifties, with a fit build, and average height and looks. Unlike her Sire, he was a pure gaijin, likely from Europe, and he wore an expensive business suit that seemed slightly out of date.
In the kitchen area, she opened up the normally neglected fridge, and turned the nozzle on a plastic water container normally used for camping to let blood pour into a wine glass. The previous night she had helped harvest the life giving substance and she had complained during every step. Not only did she have to deal with being around so much blood, which had driven her up a wall not to touch any of it, but she also had moral qualms, if she had to take life to eat, it shouldn't be at knife point.
Handing the glass to the elder vampire, he didn't even thank her before going back to talking to her Master like she wasn't even there. Which was just fine by her. The less she was involved, the less Nathanial decided to leer at her. Vampire senses could leave little privacy, seeing through such flimsy objects as clothing was child's play. So the clingy little black dress she wore didn't protect the tiny fraction of a percent of her feminine modesty. Then again he probably liked that he couldn't see everything, enjoying the mystery more than the reality.
Sitting down just out of Nathanial's line of sight, she retreated enough from the world that time would pass faster, yet she could still react to the outside world. She had been eye candy enough before; normally she even enjoyed the attention, and the ego boost it gave. This time wasn't really all that different, Ranma would have to be stupid or as unobservant as Akane and Ryoga combined not to notice how she was treated like an object in this body often enough. Even her two friends Hiroshi and Daisuke did it often. That also carried the strange connotation that she should treat this form as an object as well.
"So why did you make her?" Nathanial asked. This was the first time either of them had really discussed her, sticking to more of what they had been doing since they last met.
"Why? Just a little experiment. She was a boy."
"I find that hard to believe." Nathanail's eyes roamed over her form, obviously looking past her clothes as he did. No doubt seeing that she was indeed a girl.
"Born and raised, up until she received a magic curse that made her change back and forth."
"Sounds like a fun experiment."
"Oh yes, she was very delicious." Her Master purred. "A delicacy really. Too bad she's rather worthless. If her attitude wasn't so horrible she would make a good companion."
"Why not just make her more useful?"
Ranma gulped at this direction of the conversation. Fear of her Master taking away the last parts of her that were her was what kept her from fighting him. After that night when she had been found by Akane, in her depression she had considered if it would be better for him to destroy who she was. She would no longer be herself, she'd be truly dead, but at least she might enjoy being a vampire and wouldn't have the past haunting her. That idea had been instantly squashed; she wouldn't give up to him, that was probably what he wanted, for her to become his willing little slave. She would survive this and come out stronger on the other side.
"Actually her obstinate attitude is rather refreshing. It wouldn't be as fun if she just did what I wanted."
Ranma narrowed her eyes angrily. 'Bastard.'
"And she does look so adorable when she's angry." He added upon seeing her look.
Fuming a second longer, she quickly steeled her face to look completely passive, and without a hint of emotion. 'He's just trying to get under my skin, probably wants a reason to punish me in front of his scumbag buddy.' Ranma had dealt with her Masters innuendo enough and she had been spared his advances in that he preferred human girls.
"Master, may I be excused? So you two can talk?" Ranma wanted to at least put a wall between herself and the two elder vampires.
"No." He answered and held up his glass. "Now get me some more."
X x x x x x
In the apartment above the Nekohanten, Cologne sat relaxing before bed, her pipe drifting up a small stream of smoke towards the ceiling. It had been nearly three weeks now since she had found out from the Tendo girl that Ranma was alive. She was hesitant to take action on this news, keeping Shampoo occupied during the day, and inside at night.
When first learning of Ranma's disappearance, she had been furious with the Tendos and Saotomes for missing the signs. But once she had calmed down, she realized that it was unfair to assume they would have realized what was going on. She chose not to tell them what may have happened to him. Cologne had seen the news reports about missing girls. Either Ranma was dead or worse than dead. But she still held out hope that Ranma was just missing.
Taking a long drag from her pipe, there was movement in the shadow behind her television, and she blew the smoke out slowly. "You should come out." She informed the intruder, debating on whether or not to grab her staff.
The figure that rose from the shadow was both expected yet not. It was Ranma in female form, her red hair still braided in a pigtail, and wearing a variation of her normal clothing that fit her form. Her skin was pale and two intense teal eyes looked at Cologne, reminding her of a beaten dog.
"I'm not sure if I should be happy or sad to see you still moving." Cologne tried to look nonchalant by continuing to smoke casually.
"It'd be nice if I had a choice, but I can't take my life." A small smile appeared on the red heads face. "I guess I shouldn't be surprised that you know, it's why I came."
"If you wish, I could assist in that." Cologne wouldn't have offered if Ranma didn't look so beaten. It was like back when that monster Happosai had applied the weakness moxibustion on the teenager.
"How would you do it? I don't know how a vampire can die."
"I had heard that there were rules and guidelines for vampires on turning another. I would think, things that will kill you, would be required information. Right, Son in law?"
"Don't call me that." Ranma snapped.
"So you were turned as a girl then?"
"I can't remember what I looked like." The red head's voice was shaky. "He took it from me."
"And you wish to kill him for it?"
"And more." Ranma glanced down at the cushion next to Cologne and Shampoo's dining table, and she nodded. The vampire took a seat while Cologne put out her pipe, no longer having the option of looking carefree. A distressed vampire was a dangerous and unpredictable one. "You acted like you knew, how do you kill a vampire?"
"There are many ways and some do not work all the time." Grabbing her staff, she hopped over to a large trunk she had in the corner. "Decapitation isn't a sure thing. Fire can do the job if they aren't able to put it out. Silver, especially something blessed properly will burn worse than fire, but it must penetrate their heart to kill them. But the simplest way is to take a wooden stake and run it through their heart."
"He has a silver wakizashi." Ranma mumbled to herself.
"That would explain why the news report said the victims were missing and not dead by blood loss. A good way for a vampire to cover their tracks. Let any authorities solve a mystery they are incapable of solving." Digging through the trunk, she looked for the right artifact to give to Shampoo for protection. "Is that the only reason you came here?"
"I needed to tell you that you have to leave."
"Oh?" Finding the pendant, she put it in her pocket, and turned back to Ranma. In a minute it would attune to the vampire sitting in front of her, once it had done that, Shampoo would be safe from the type of vampire Ranma had become. "I'm running a business and can't simply pack everything up and leave on short notice."
"My Master mentioned Shampoo the other night."
"I take it that it wasn't just casual conversation." Cologne looked towards the entrance of the room and briefly wondered if Shampoo was still sleeping peacefully or if Ranma was simply a diversion.
"He joked about having the whole set." Ranma squeezed her eyes closed and bowed her head almost to the table. "Please protect Akane and Ukyo."
"I can make no promises." This was very bad indeed. The pendent should be able to protect Shampoo but she didn't have anything else. She had ways of fighting a vampire, however she couldn't be everywhere at once, or on watch all the time. This was also a huge request, while bearing no ill will towards either girl; she had no reason to put her life on the line of them.
"One more thing." Ranma straightened up. "Do you know how a vampire is freed from their master?"
"The Joketsuzoku know more on how to destroy them not how they live, but I was told drinking the masters blood."
"Thanks for your help." Ranma rose to her feet and backed up towards the shadow again.
"Son－ I mean Ranma. Where are you going?"
"If I stay away too long he might get suspicious about where I went."
"Cologne－ I wanted to thank you－ for helping."
"You were my Shampoo's betrothed, think of it as a last request."
"It may be." Ranma shook her head. "If he finds out about this－ I'm sorry if I do anything." The red head fell into a shadow and vanished.
'A useful ability.' Lighting up her pipe again, she wondered why all the dark creatures of the world had easy access to reality breaking abilities.
X x x x x x
Moaning softly on the floor, Ranma struggled to get over the latest mental attack by her Master. Inching herself away from him, he kicked her in the stomach, making her flop on to her back. His foot slamming down on her chest, breaking her ribs, and crushing several organs. Unable to cry out in pain or remove his foot, she whimpered ineffectually in pain.
"Why must you disappoint me?" He asked with his eyes closed. "Asking a human how to kill us? What side are you on?" Lifting up his foot, he kicked her in the side again, sending her sprawling into the side of a chair. Clutching at her destroyed chest, she felt the damage immediately begin to heal itself.
"Do you really think they care about you?" He knelt down next to her. "You're a vampire, given the chance they would kill you without a second thought." Grabbing both sides of her head, he hauled her up to look directly in his face. "And here I thought I was being so generous－ offering to make a little sister just for you."
"Please." Ranma wheezed. "Don't."
"Because of you, they've learned of us." He let her go and Ranma's head bounced off the floor. "I suppose I need to fix you since you're not smart enough to do as I say." Eyes wide with fright, Ranma ignored her injured body, and backed away from the master vampire.
"Such little trust you have for me." He easily kept pace with her backward movement. Ranma had to pause as her organs suddenly healed themselves, her ribs soon joining them. Taking several deep, unneeded breaths out of reflex, she was unprepared for the pain that assaulted her.
X x x x x x
Ranma's eyes snapped open and she sat up in a flash. She couldn't remember the mental attack stopping, only finally being disconnected from the pain, and then nothing. Rubbing at her eyes, she couldn't believe what she was seeing. All around her was nothing but blackness. She could see nothing, not an outline of an object, not even what she was sitting on. The only thing she could see was her unclothed self, which strangely she could make out normally. Ever since becoming a vampire, she could see clearly in a room where no light could enter, being in a place where she could see nothing felt so alien and wrong.
Getting to her feet, she wondered where her clothes had gone but waved that concern away to shout into the darkness. "Hello!" There was no echo or response. "Anybody!" She tried again while walking forward until her face met an invisible wall. Clutching her face briefly, she soon felt around looking for a seam, and found that she was enclosed within a box. Jumping upwards, her head painfully hit a ceiling the same height as the box was wide.
Finding a corner, she sat down with her back to the wall, and pulled her knees up to her chest to stare into the black world around her. The last thing she remembered was her Sire attacking her mentally. Had he killed her? Was this where vampires went when they died? Ranma started to cry softly, overwhelmed by her new circumstance. Her life had been stolen by a vampire and now he had condemned her to this?
How much time passed, Ranma couldn't tell, her mind was playing tricks on her, but finally she heard something. It sounded like someone was shifting around a bathtub. The dark around her vanished in an instant and she was back in the place she had woke up every night since becoming a vampire.
"Hey!" She got to her feet and looked around. No matter where her eyes turned, the same vision from someone else's eyes was all she saw. The world twisted and the person sighed contentedly while stretching. Looking down as they stepped out of the tub, Ranma now knew the person was female, and that it was her when they looked into a mirror over a sink.
Watching, the doppelganger appraised herself in the mirror, poking at her face, and prodding at her hair until she untied the pigtail to let her long red hair free. Digging in a drawer, the girl grabbed a brush and sat down on the edge of the tub to run it through her hair.
"What's going on?" Ranma wondered, trying to figure out why she was watching herself do this. Having no clothing or any other item, her own hair was already out of it's pigtail.
The other Ranma seemed satisfied with her work, returning the brush to the drawer, and stepping out into the main room of the apartment. Her Sire was waiting, reclining on the couch with his feet kicked up on to the cushions. "How do you feel?" He asked smugly.
"Oh I feel wonderful Master." Ranma's own voice echoed around her, the girl running up to stand before the master vampire. "What ever can I do to thank you for all that you've done?"
Ranma gagged at the girl's actions. Banging futilely on her invisible prison, she couldn't help but watch the girl be pulled down to sit on his lap. Ranma shivered in disgust as her Master lightly played with her hair. Even inside this prison she could feel everything that her body was feeling.
"I can think of－ many things." He gave the other Ranma a knowing smile, seeming to look to Ranma's prison. "But don't you want me to make a sister for you?"
"Really?" The other Ranma exclaimed happily. "Oh thank you Master!" She gushed, hugging the elder vampire.
"No!" Ranma shouted, throwing her fists against her prison. "No no no!" She screamed.
"Go get changed." The master vampire waved a hand dismissively towards the bathroom. "You want to look your best when you meet your new sister don't you?"
X x x x x x
Ukyo leaned on the counter watching the entrance to her shop. Business had been slow tonight and Konatsu was cleaning the sink for the third time. The male kunoichi was always busy with something and it tired Ukyo out just watching him. Her day had been highlighted by Shampoo coming by to say Cologne wanted to see her about something urgent. Ukyo wasn't interested in what the old crone wanted so she had ignored Shampoo to deal with the few customers that had come in.
Akane had been by about a week ago and told her that Ranma was still alive but was hiding out for some reason. That answered the question that had been hanging over their heads for months now. Ranma would come back when he was done with whatever it was he was doing, and if not, then she would just track him down again.
"Hey Konatsu." She called into the back.
"Yes Ukyo-sama?" The pretty head of her gender confused waiter appeared in the doorway.
"It's getting late, I'm going to close up."
"I'll clean the griddle." He chirped happily and she didn't have the heart to tell him that it was already clean.
Ukyo stopped on her way out from behind the counter when a short girl came inside. "Welcome to Ucchans". She greeted before recognizing the red head in front of her. "Ranchan!" She cried out happily, running up and gathering the smaller girl in a hug.
That her fiancé was wearing a black halter top with spaghetti straps that was showing off a large amount of cleavage and fitting capri blue jeans didn't register for a moment. But she quickly wrote it off as Ranma out to scam someone. What was important was that he was back.
"Where have you been?" She demanded, pulling Ranma over to the counter.
"That's actually why I'm here." The red head said in a way that made the hairs on the back of Ukyo's neck stand up. Ranma usually made an effort to sound more masculine as a girl, but now she was using feminine language, and seemed completely relaxed with how her voice sounded.
"Really?" Ukyo took a seat next to Ranma. "I'd ask if you wanted some hot water but I don't think you could pull off that look as a guy." She joked, noticing strange differences in her childhood friend. The eyes were an unnerving shade of teal, not for the color, but the person behind them didn't feel right.
"Hello Ranma-sama." Konatsu greeted as he came out to clean the grill.
"Hello Konatsu." Ranma returned enthusiastically.
Ranma's skin was very pale, something Ukyo didn't think possible with how much time he spent outdoors. Sure it was almost summer and the winter had been cold, but she didn't think a person could get that pale naturally unless they were shut up in a dark room all their lives. When the redhead smiled at her, Ukyo saw that she had long sharp fangs.
"Are you alright?" Ukyo asked, wondering what the cursed boy had been through. The shorter girl didn't look bad, in fact she seemed a little more attractive than before.
"Oh I couldn't be better." Ranma answered in a bubbly voice. "I've never felt better in my life." She added a half beat later.
"You mind telling me what you did to make yourself feel so good? I've been worried sick about you and it'd be nice to relax. Hey, how about we take a trip to the beach, just the two of us?" The weather was warm enough now. Well the water wouldn't be all that warm but being out on the beach in the sun would feel nice.
"The beach－ can't do that. But do you really want to?" Ranma asked hopefully.
Ukyo didn't have a chance to respond before the enthusiastic red head grabbed her by the wrist and started to pull her towards the doorway. "Ranchan wait I have to close up before I go anywhere, I can't trust Konatsu with the money." She protested, struggling to pull herself free from Ranma's iron grip. 'Wow, Ranchan must be really cold.'
"But Master is waiting." Ranma stopped to turn back to her, a confused expression on her face as if the cursed boy couldn't figure out what to do now.
Ukyo winced as Ranma's confusion turned to frustration and she started to squeeze her fist. "Ranchan－ you're hurting me."
"Is he now?" Cologne hopped into the store on her cane. "Evening Ranma." The elderly woman greeted.
"Hello." Ranma seemed to finally be back on track and became bubbly again as she loosened her grip. "I'm sorry you can't be turned." She said sadly. "But I'll miss you when you're gone."
"There's a few years of life left in these old bones." Cologne reached into her sleeve and pulled out what looked like a jar of peanuts. "I did get something for you."
"Really?" Ranma eyes lit up and she released Ukyo's wrist to grab the jar from Cologne. Rubbing at where a bruise was already forming, Ukyo watched Ranma puzzle over the gift. "I can't eat these though."
"Oh it's not food." The Chinese woman answered. "You'll just have to open and find out what it is."
"Okay!" Ranma chirped, unscrewing the lid, and looking directly inside. With a heavy poof, a white cloud exploded from the chair to hang around Ranma. Ukyo found herself thrown across the room by Cologne as Ranma looked around at the glittering dust cloud. Konatsu appeared at her side and checking to make sure that she was unhurt.
"What is this?" The pale girl asked, her eyes crossing, and her noise twitching like she had something in it. The red head's breath suddenly caught and she started to choke and gag.
"Mousse." Cologne ordered and the blind boy jumped into the room. "The chains." The old woman added.
"Yea yea." He threw his arms forwards and chains show from his sleeves to wrap up a chair.
"Put your glasses on you blind fool!" Cologne shook her head, keeping an on Ranma as she staggered over to lean on the counter, clutching at her chest and clawing at her throat.
"What are you doing?" Ukyo shouted, torn between helping Ranma, and finding out what was Cologne's purpose. Mousse was retrieving his chains rather than pull out new ones.
"Saving your life." Cologne answered calmly. "Hurry up before she can recover." She told Mousse.
"Shut up you old mummy." He answered, putting on his glasses, and wrapping Ranma in the chains.
Ukyo covered her ears at Ranma's scream of pain, the small girl falling to the floor, smoke erupting from where the chains touched her skin. "Stop it!" Ukyo ran up to free Ranma but found herself falling flat on her face, Cologne's staff having caught her legs.
"Do not hurt Ukyo-sama again." Konatsu stepped between Ukyo and Cologne. Ranma's screams came to an end, replaced by pained whimpers that were muffled when Mousse gagged her with some cloth.
"I'm saving her life." Cologne narrowed her eyes at the male kunoichi, sensing something off about his feminine appearance but being unable to pinpoint what. "If you had come to see me earlier you would have known that Ranma has become a creature of the night, a vampire. We've wasted enough time and we need to get to a secure location before the master vampire realizes what's going on."
X x x x x x
"I'm going to have to burn these clothes because all this garlic is NOT coming out." Nabiki sat on a chair in the main room of the Nekohanten, her arms crossed, watching impassively as Cologne went about doing some final preparations to keep the other vampire out.
Ranma was bound in the center of the room to a chair, looking like the most miserable thing in existence. Some of her skin was still smoking from the chains, and it looked like she was having a severe allergic reaction to all the garlic Cologne had strung up. Every so often Ranma would have a coughing fit, her skin had splotchy red patches all over, and she wouldn't stop moaning in pain.
"What can we do for my son?" Nodoka asked Cologne worriedly. All of Nabiki's family was here as well as the other two Saotome's. Ukyo and Konatsu had tagged along after Ranma had apparently tried to drag Ukyo off, and Shampoo and Mousse lived here. Nobody had bothered to tell Kodachi, but Nabiki figured that no one in their right mind would want to make her a vampire.
"Not much I'm afraid, vampirism doesn't have a cure." The old woman sighed, finally taking a seat on the cash register counter. "If Ranma was still himself I would have suggested getting some of the master vampires blood to free him. That way he could help us defeat him. But－ not now."
"Why not?" Nodoka demanded.
"Because as Ranma feared, his master has done things to his mind." Cologne pointed a small finger at Ukyo. "Did that seem like Ranma to you?"
"No." Ukyo answered, having a perpetual frown since she got here. "That's not Ranchan."
"So then what are going to do?" Akane asked.
"Use Ranma as bait." Cologne answered. "And then－ we end his suffering." The old woman's gaze swept over them, before pausing. "Where is your eldest?" She asked Soun.
"Oh she said she was going to go grab a book if we were going to be here a while." Nabiki's father answered.
"Kitchen destroyer's father no too smart." Shampoo commented.
"Come with me." Cologne pointed to Shampoo, Genma, Soun, and Mousse as she hopped out of the store front. Akane didn't seem to like the idea of being left behind while their elder sister was possibly being attacked by a vampire capable of taking Ranma out, so she followed too. Nabiki didn't move, figuring that the stench of garlic was preferable to being put in mortal peril.
Now that Cologne was no longer here to stop her, Nodoka grabbed a damp rag from the kitchen and began to wipe at Ranma's face. Ranma said a few muffled words into the cloth gag that Nabiki couldn't make out. The Saotome woman reached behind Ranma's head and undid the gag.
"Mom, please let me go." Ranma started another coughing fit that sounded like she was going to hack up her lungs.
"I want to but you're－ not right in the head." Nodoka answered slowly.
"Not to mention that you drink blood and live at night." Nabiki pointed out, picking up her chair to move it closer to the red head before sitting back down. "So do you actually burst into flames?"
"Nabiki this is no time to be combative." Nodoka chastised her.
"You're not curious at all?" She shrugged. "How often do you have a vampire sitting in front of you?"
"The sun doesn't do anything, we just don't like it." Ranma answered her earlier question with a slight cough at the end.
"Why were you trying to drag me out of my shop?" Ukyo butted in.
"Master." Ranma stopped, looking like she wanted to throw up. "Master said he would share his gift with whoever I brought to him."
"You wanted to turn me into a vampire?" Ukyo all but screeched. "You really aren't Ranchan."
"Ucchan." Ranma pleaded. "It's so wonderful being a vampire, I just wanted you to be like me." Nabiki caught Nodoka's hard look at she stepped back away from Ranma.
"And would it have mattered if I said no?" Ukyo pressed.
"I didn't say yes when I was turned, you would have understood afterwards." Ranma answered.
"So what's so wonderful about being a vampire?" Nabiki decided to ask. She knew that this Ranma was off mentally, but it was better than sitting in silence.
"Everything." Ranma replied, slumping a bit in her chair at a happy memory. "I'm stronger, faster, I can change my shape at will, I'm immortal, and blood." The girl purred. "When you're done eating it's like your body is on fire. It's all you can do not to－ hmm－ touch yourself, and when you do." Ranma trailed off with a rather perverted smile on her face.
'Wow, am I happy that Akane isn't here right now.' Nabiki thought, noticing that Ukyo was as surprised as she was by Ranma's comment.
"I do not think anything that this vampire has done to you could be described as wonderful." Nodoka walked away from Ranma, clearly disturbed by the admission of sexuality from her son turned daughter. "It will be good when this stain on our honor is over with."
Nabiki shared a look with Ukyo and Konatsu, the male kunoichi blushing furiously. Nabiki did have other concerns on her mind than the cook and her male waitress. "So if it's so great to be a vampire－ why did your master play with your head?"
"He didn't do anything to me." Ranma answered as if Nabiki was an idiot. "Cologne is just angry that I'm happy and she can't get me to marry Shampoo. I'm free and she can't handle it. She's probably angry that I have more money than I know what to do with too." Nabiki's left eyebrow rose briefly. "It's not like the humans I eat will need it."
"You kill people and steal their money?" Ukyo asked angrily. "You're a monster."
'Not all that monstrous.' Nabiki considered. She took people's money enough to know that leaving them broke wasn't the nicest thing to do. Honestly Nabiki wondered about this vampire thing. Getting horny after eating sounded like an inconvenience, but she did always enjoy the night life. Immortality, freedom from responsibilities, power, and money those things spoke to her. Maybe she was looking at things the wrong way.
X x x x x x
Ranma wiped at her eyes with the back of her forearm, Resting against a corner of her prison, she could feel that the walls had become weak and spongy, but after an hour of beating on them she had given up. Her mother's comment had been a factor. As much as Ranma wanted to end her life, to hear such a callous declaration that she was a stain on the family honor was another matter. She had no choice in becoming a vampire and had no control over ending it.
Kasumi turned out to be alright, which improved Ranma's mood. That the person who had replaced her was manipulating Nabiki removed that improvement. The longer she remained in control, the more competent she seemed to get.
Looking down at her wrists, she saw the angry burns from the chains keeping her to the chair in the real world. Thinking about it, the draining influence of the silver was likely what was weakening the prison. Maybe if she was held long enough she would be able to get free. This led her to another question, what would happen if she did? Would there be a battle for supremacy? Some kind of melding? Would it even change anything? Leading to her floating around in this world where she could only watch the outside world.
A feeling of dread crept over her, it had only been a short time now in this mental prison, if she had to be in here for years she would go insane. Could she even go insane was a scarier thought. Outside, daylight was starting to appear through the covered windows at the front of the shop. She had never seen the sun since becoming a vampire and the light quickly grew so intense that the outside Ranma had to close her eyes and turn away from it.
Ranma knew that the sun wouldn't hurt her unless she was out in direct sunlight, and even then it would be at most a bad sunburn. The personality in control of her body begged and pleaded enough that Cologne had Shampoo drag her into a back room where it was darker. The other Ranma still couldn't sleep and Ranma smiled that if she had to suffer then so did her body snatcher.
She could hear voices discussing plans for the next night, but for the day they would go about a slightly normal routine, and then meet back here before sundown. Ranma was happy that she knew someone capable of doing this. If Cologne wasn't around, then there would be little any of them could have done to protect themselves.
Distracted as she was, she missed Nabiki removing the lock holding the chains on her body, but when the burning suddenly stopped, she noticed. "What's she doing?" Ranma stood up in her prison.
"Come on, we have to go before they notice." Nabiki told the Ranma outside. Inside, Ranma could feel that her body was weak from the silver exposure, and would be too weak to take on Cologne if she noticed. But that was still more than enough for everyone else. The two didn't remain in the shop, quickly running out the back door before the other personality picked up Nabiki and started to sprint across rooftops.
X x x x x x
Nabiki was jostled around as Ranma made good time across the roof tops. She would have preferred to be held tight to a strong manly chest during this trip, but she would take what she could get. Feeling Ranma slip for a moment on a roof tile, she nearly cried out before the vampire recovered, and quickly dropped to the ground.
"Trouble?" Nabiki asked.
"I－ I just need to rest for a moment." The red head leaned against the wall of a building, a hand covering her eyes.
"You said the sun didn't do anything."
"I'm just tired, that silver really drained me. That and it's really bright." She finished with a whine.
"I can see that." Nabiki didn't prod but she inspected the burn marks on Ranma's skin that were slowly healing, and with how the red head was dressed, anybody would be able to see them. "How far are we from－ wherever?"
"Not too far." Ranma replied, rubbing at the burns on her right shoulder.
"Well we can't really have you walking looking like that." Nabiki grabbed Ranma and pulled the vampire to where they were better hidden. "Let's switch tops." She suggested, unbuttoning her blouse which had long sleeves.
"Good idea." Ranma nodded and they quickly switched clothing. Tugging on the bottom, Ranma's top was one size too small, but nothing that would be seen as abnormal.
"So why are you a girl?" She adjusted her breasts to sit better. "And with a fashion sense?" Nabiki had checked out the tab and this was designer label clothing.
"I was turned as a girl, I'm not a guy anymore." The red head answered casually.
"Woah, and you're fine with that?" Nabiki could tell that Ranma had changed in the past few months, but she would still expect him to be freaking out over this, or at least having some difficulty admitting it.
"Oh, I wasn't at first, but now I can't imagine being a guy."
Nabiki worried about how happy Ranma sounded about that, but looking into the red head's teal eyes, she figured that it was something that had a proper story to it that explained it. "Do you think they followed us?"
"No way, humans can't catch vampires." Ranma boasted.
"Are all vampires as strong and fast as you?"
When Cologne had first explained that a vampire was targeting people around her, and had been able to defeat Ranma. She had been scared of that. Being a young attractive woman, while other young attractive women are going missing due to a vampire who can beat one of the strongest, most skilled people she knew, how could she not be scared? Being the predator was always better than the prey. The few times where she had been in a position of weakness were not times she wished to repeat.
"Master is stronger." The vampire crossed her arms and nodded sagely. "And I am very skilled, but you would be very strong and fast. You'd be able to beat Shampoo I bet, maybe even Mousse or Ryoga. I haven't had much of a chance to test myself."
"So what's the drawback? What's the price for this?" She asked, pretty much having decided to go through with it.
"Drawback?" Ranma's face scrunched up into a frustrated pout. "Humans don't really like it if they find out."
"No I mean more like physical stuff. You already said you get all hot and bothered after a meal, what else?" She already considered wearing sunglasses during the day a small price to pay.
"You can only die if someone stabs you in the heart with a wooden stake?"
"That would probably be a positive." Left unsaid was that it would kill her at the moment, so she wasn't planning on being stabbed ever.
"Um, you'll be as you are now forever? Unless you decide to change what you look like."
"Again, a positive."
"I won't ever be pushing out a kid, so not much of a negative. How about that you kill people for food?" She asked, thinking that while she didn't care much for other people that may be something that would cause her some distress.
"Oh no, that's perfectly natural. Just like a human eating a fish."
"So no lingering remorse about ending someone's life?"
"If it's someone that you like maybe." Ranma cocked her head to one side. Nabiki caught the vampire's eyes once again and she accepted the answer at face value.
"Alright, let's get going before Shampoo magically finds you."
X x x x x x
Nabiki rode the elevator up to the top floor with Ranma. A doorman had greeted Ranma at the door to let them in. This was clearly a high scale place, with a large main lobby, and simple yet elegant decorations. 'Oh yes, I can definitely see living in places like this.' The apartment was in the corner and Ranma held her hand over the door knob briefly as a small click marked it unlocking.
'Some weird mind powers too?' Nabiki realized how good of a thief a vampire would be.
Inside, she couldn't see anything once the door had closed behind her. Blackout curtains covered over all the walls, letting in only tiny slivers of light between them. 'Shouldn't I be nervous about this?' She wondered, this whole situation should be directing her away from Ranma, not following her to the lair of a vampire.
"Sorry I'm late Master." Ranma said from behind her.
As her eyes adjusted, she made out a tall figure sitting in a plush chair, who reached out to turn on a lamp to his side. The light revealed a man of mixed descent, with teal eyes like Ranma, and wearing black silk pajamas. "I was wondering why you took so long."
As soon as the man spoke, something clicked in Nabiki, and she realized suddenly what she was doing. Squashing down the sudden urge to run, she knew that Ranma could easily stop her, and was positioned right next to the only exit. Glancing at the blissfully smiling red head, Nabiki gulped. 'Weird mental powers.' She had been tricked, manipulated, and now she was at the mercy of two beings who would have no qualms about eating her alive.
"Nabiki helped me out and wants to become a vampire. Isn't that great Master?" Ranma chirped, clasping her hands in front of her chest.
"I uh－ couldn't just let them torture you like that." Nabiki couldn't stop her voice from quivering. "But I think I want some more time to think about that vampire thing." She added. 'Okay, keep calm, you can get out of this.'
"You came all the way here." The male vampire stood up and even from across the room he towered over her. "Please, sit." He motioned towards a couch matching the chair.
"I've been up all night and I should really be finding a ride back home." She took a single step back and a hand found it's way to the small of her back.
"Master wants you to sit." The girl said flatly.
"I suppose that wouldn't hurt." She smiled nervously and went over to take a seat. "You have a nice penthouse." She pointed out.
"It's getting very small." The master vampire took a seat very close to her. Ranma as well took a seat on the opposite side of her, making her the middle of a vampire sandwich. "We'll have to move soon and find something with more rooms."
"Maybe I could help you with that." She spoke up. "As a human I mean."
"Humans aren't needed." He told her, leaning in far too closely for her comfort.
"Shouldn't vampires be sleeping during the day?" She tried a new tactic. "Wouldn't you want to talk about things tonight?" If she could get them to go to sleep then she could get out of here and then beg Cologne for forgiveness.
"No, this is a fine time to do this, and you'll wake with us tonight." He leaned in closer.
"I changed my mind." She tried to stand up but again she was stopped by a single hand on her shoulder that nearly crushed her into the cushions. "Please, I really don't want to be a vampire." Nabiki tried not to beg, to sound confident, and from a position to negotiate. Out of the corner of her eye she saw Ranma suddenly clutch her head in pain.
"Something wrong?" The male vampire asked the red head.
"No, I'm fine." Ranma answered.
"No more distractions." The master vampire suddenly grabbed her far shoulder and twisted Nabiki to face him.
"I'll scream." She pushed her hands against his chest, trying to hold him off. "These walls can't be that thick."
"If you scream." He easily overpowered her and pushed her hands to the side. "I'll turn you into a ghoul, do you know what a ghoul is?" Nabiki shook her head side to side. "It's a revolting corpse that craves human flesh. You would be conscious of all your actions and you would hate every part of your new existence. Scream－ and I rape you, then turn you into a ghoul. Then, I'll make sure everyone of your family members are fed to you."
"Ranma－ help me please." She pleaded with the red head, tears blurring her vision. "Please help me."
"Don't worry, you'll be much happier as a vampire." Ranma answered her plea with a Kasumi-like smile.
Nabiki didn't have any more time to beg before the vampire sunk his teeth into her neck. Hissing in pain, she struggled to push him away but he didn't budge. She could feel him sucking her blood out as she grew weaker and weaker. Soon enough she couldn't even hold her head up, falling limply against the couch, the vampire shifting his position to stay biting her. Just before she lost consciousness, she felt something warm enter her cold body where she was being bitten, and it rapidly started to spread through her body.
X x x x x x
Shampoo sighed as she began to pack up the eating utensils. She would get through losing Ranma on her own time, but right now she had to help pack. A task that would have been easier if The Tendo patriarch and the violent kitchen destroyer Akane, weren't demanding that Cologne help return Nabiki.
"What are you going to do to get my daughter back?" Soun demanded.
"Nothing." Cologne answered, ignoring him as she was doing her own task to help leave before night fall.
"What do you mean nothing? You wanted us to come here because you said you had some way to fight vampires. Why are you just stopping now?" Akane asked.
"Because you stupid little girl." Cologne barked. "My entire plan was to capture Ranma which left only one vampire to deal with. I doubt we'll have any kind of chance to get Ranma again, and your daughter is likely already well on her way to being a vampire. That means three vampires to deal with. The only choice I have is to cut my losses and save Shampoo from the same fate."
"You selfish old hag." Soun responded to Cologne.
"I'm sorry, but if you can come up with a way to find where they went, and Nabiki hasn't been turned yet, then how do you expect me to magically solve this?"
"I－ don't know." The emotional man answered.
"Cologne-san, isn't there anything you can do?" Kasumi asked politely.
Shampoo could see her great grandmother thinking this over and wanted to speak up and tell her to say no. They had no requirement to assist the Tendos. The family had always been obstacles and obstacles were for killing, not helping.
"Where did you say you originally saw Ranma?" The elderly woman asked Akane.
"Great grandmother!" Shampoo finally spoke up, switching to Chinese. "Why would you want to help them?"
"Because." Cologne remained speaking Japanese. "Ranma asked and we should honor his last request." The old woman closed her eyes. "But only one more night. Nabiki will need to feed and won't have a vampires full abilities until then. After tonight, I won't risk any further action."
X x x x x x
Ranma was horrified at what had just happened to Nabiki, not even the middle Tendo had done anything worthy of that kind of treatment. Thankfully her Master hadn't made her a ghoul or simply made a meal out of her. When the other Ranma took Nabiki into the bathroom and curled up with her in the bathtub as the change from human to vampire ran it's full course, she snarled to herself, not being able to hate the girl for being what he had made her.
Preparing herself to spend the day in darkness, she was surprised when another red headed form appeared outside of her prison. Like her, she was naked, and looking around confused at her new location. Leaping against the wall, she startled the doppleganger, before being bounced back by the wall. Snarling, she paced in her prison like the caged animal that she was.
"You." Ranma said hatefully.
"Who are you?" The double asked cluelessly.
"I'm Ranma you idiot! The owner of that body you're walking around in!" She found one of the walls and punched it out of frustration.
"But I'm Ranma." The other protested.
"The hell you are! You're just some－ thing that he made to replace me."
"If Master had to do that then you were definitely being bad."
"Master is bad, don't you get that?"
"Master is not bad!" The double screamed.
"You're just as bad as he is." Ranma wanted to rage, she wanted to destroy the crazy girl in front of her, but all she could think of was Nabiki begging for help while the girl did nothing. "You let him hurt Nabiki like he did me. Like he did us." She added trying to see if she could get to this crazy girl. "If you were me you'd care."
"She'll be happier as a vampire." The other Ranma said without conviction, seeming to agree with her to an extent.
"Maybe she will, but she deserved to have a choice, and not having to live worrying that your precious Master will twist her into something like you and lock the real Nabiki up like I am."
"You wanted to know how to kill Master, you were bad." The copy changed the topic.
"Master took away everything from me and he wants to do the same to everyone that I know. How could I not want to fight back?" Placing both hands against the wall, she dug her fingers in as much as she could.
"You－ you were bad." The red head on the other side of the wall came closer.
"Was I bad enough that I deserve to be locked up here, forced to watch everything you do?" Ranma's question caused the desired reaction, making the girl question herself.
"If you wanted to kill Master then yes."
"I don't know why I'm even trying to get through to you, he made you into a willing and stupid slave." Turning her back, she leaned against the wall, and slid down to a sitting position.
"If I'm so stupid then why are you in here while I'm free?" The double asked, trying to poke Ranma through the prison. An electric shock shot through Ranma and for a brief instant she was in the bathtub looking at Nabiki who was facing her. A moment later she was back in the prison, the fake Ranma laying outside like she had just been run over by the Akane train.
'If I get rid of her, then I go free.' A wicked smile spread over Ranma's face. Of course now she had to figure out a way to do that.
X x x x x x
"Are you up yet Nabiki?"
Nabiki scrunched her eyes shut tighter, refusing to respond to Ranma, who knew for a fact that she was awake, and had been for the past half hour. When she had first woken, memories had come back to her of how Ranma had manipulated her. Played to her greed and lead her back to this place to be forcibly turned into a vampire. That part was impossible to remember, but every part of her told her that she had said no.
"Hungry?" The irritating voice of Ranma asked. Nabiki kept herself from answering, hoping, wishing that this was nothing more than a bad dream that she would wake up from. She could ignore the strange feelings she currently felt for the red head, and the unnamed Master that she couldn't help but think of fondly for the moment.
But she could not ignore the painful gnawing of her stomach that drew more and more attention the more times Ranma mentioned food. The fangs her tongue kept running over practically tingled at the thought of blood, a thought that her mind couldn't help but come back to.
"Hmm." Ranma seemed to be thinking of something before Nabiki felt the other body leave her side. "If you don't get up, I'm going to turn the water on." The evil red head turned the handle just long enough to splash her bare feet with water.
"Fine you little bitch." Nabiki spat, climbing out of the bathtub. During the day, it seemed like she had been redressed in a set of flannel pajamas. Ranma had a hurt look on her face, ataken back by the venom in her voice.
"What's wrong? Are you still changing? I figured it would be done by now. Well you do have to go through this kind of vampire puberty for the next couple weeks where your senses are kind of out of control but that's nothing to be worried about."
"What's wrong? What's wrong!" Nabiki's voice rose to hysterical levels.
"You don't have to shout." Ranma tried to pacify her.
"I'll shout if I want! After what you did to me, you think you can be all nice, and things will just blow over?"
Ranma shrinked back further during Nabiki's outburst, actually looking ashamed of herself. "I'm－ I'm sorry if you feel that way."
"No you're not, don't sit there and lie to me whoever you are. The guy did do something to your head because you are clearly not Ranma." Crossing her arms, she glared at the smaller girl.
"So what if I'm not?" The girl started to sniffle. "Ranma was bad and Master had to punish her. I'm Ranma now and she'll just have to deal with it."
'She'll?' Nabiki blinked several times, confused over that phrasing.
"I'm happy as a vampire, you'll be too." Ranma shifted back into a happy mood. "But we need food!" She announced, running up to grab Nabiki around the waist and pull her out the doorway to a bedroom. Nabiki noticed that the vampire who had violated her was not here.
"Let me go." She finally pushed the demented Ranma away.
"This is where Master lets me keep all my clothes." Ranma slid open a closet exposing a great deal of clothing. Underneath were small drawers that likely held the rest. "You can borrow anything you like. Sisters do that right? I know you've borrowed from Akane all the time." Shrugging away the detail, Ranma started to sort through the clothing without waiting for a response.
'Oh Ranma, what did that guy do to you?' She glanced down at the pale skin of her arms. 'What did he do to me?' Other than the hunger she felt, she didn't immediately notice a big difference in her new self, and had no way to know what to expect from this.
"Ooh this is perfect!" Ranma happily skipped over to the bed and laid out a green and red dress that were nearly identical otherwise. "We can match!"
"I'm in hell."
X x x x x x
Staying off to the side and making herself as unnoticeable as possible, Cologne, watched the crowd for the two vampires that could still be in the area. This was the shopping district that Akane had seen Ranma originally. Shampoo was positioned within sight also searching for the pair. With the amulet on her, she should be safe from any attack a vampire may attempt save throwing something at her.
It was getting late and the crowds of shoppers were starting to thin out. Cologne was already ready to call it a night. From her research into the deaths that the original vampire had caused, he moved all over Tokyo, taking young girls in random places. There was little reason to believe that Ranma and Nabiki would show up here.
Luck seemed to be on their side though as she caught sight of bright red hair and a familiar body wearing a rather tight and revealing green dress. Ranma was walking with her arms wrapped around Nabiki possessively, the middle Tendo wearing a matching red dress. Both had a more normal skin tone and a light blush graced Ranma's face while Nabiki looked like she was going to combust.
Neither had caught sight of her and Shampoo so the world was truly smiling on them tonight.
X x x x x x
Nabiki had known intellectually that this would happen. Ranma had made it rather clear how she got excited after drinking blood. Of course now she knew that the Ranma who had said that was not the real Ranma, who never would have admitted to pleasuring herself as a girl in front of Nodoka. That didn't make it any less true. Actually it wasn't really that overpowering and if Ranma would just stop touching her, she would have just ignored it until it went away.
The act of taking blood itself had been easy. Someone like her, who was predisposed to a lack empathy, had been able to accept the powerful urge without trouble. In a way it had been a very intimate moment, where only she and her meal had existed. Right before the brainwashed Ranma had started to kiss and molest her, clearly intent on doing a different brand of intimate activity right there in the alley next to two dead bodies. Thankfully she had been able to dissuade the amorous red head for now, but she did not seem willing to give it up completely.
Ignoring the way Ranma's fingers were gently rubbing up against side, she focused on how powerful she felt. Walking past a bike rack, she used two fingers to pinch the metal, easily deforming the steel in an act that would have been impossible before. 'At least I got something out of this.' Nabiki closed her eyes and moved a bit closer to Ranma when the crazy girl's hand strayed up to the side of her breast, the tips of her fingers like a feather tickling her flesh.
"Stop that." She batted Ranma's hand away.
Keeping her focus was difficult, all of her senses seemed strained to the max. The thundering of human heart beats around her, the ability to feel the individual fibers of her clothing, to see into ever dark crevice like she had a flashlight, and the myriad of smells. Add to that Ranma's continued violation of her personal space and she was very tempted to let Ranma do what she so clearly wanted to do. Being an open minded liberal sort of girl, it may be interesting to experiment now that she was a creature of darkness. What did she have to lose?
The doorman paid particularly close attention as they passed. Nabiki wanted to speak up, try and tell the man who had happened, even get him to call some authority. But how could she explain what had happened in a few sentences without sounding like a lunatic? 'Help! I've been turned into a vampire, and I need help getting away from my former brother in law, who's now a brain washed vampire girl who's is planning to have her way with me!'
She sighed. 'Yea right, he'd probably just ask to watch.'
Nabiki was trapped and the only people who might help would be just as likely to kill her.
X x x x x x
One application of memory techniques, and Shampoo had found out what floor the two vampires had went to and which apartment they lived in, afterwards she had erased the man's memory of them. Once up on the top floor, she helped Cologne fix a packet of exploding garlic powder mixed with silver flakes to the wall above the door. Each of them had more that they would place in the other doorways of the hall that would fill the entire hall with the material. They would all be triggered at the same time, so it would be impossible for him to dodge.
Shampoo didn't like this plan at all and didn't trust the amulet Cologne had given her to keep her safe from the vampire. Supposedly she would be the bait and while the powder did its work to distract the vampire, if he tried to use her as a shield or to attack her, the amulet would repel him violently.
"Remember, when you see him, do not look into his eyes or think of the explosives." Cologne instructed.
"Yes." She nodded.
Once the vampire was confused by the garlic and silver, there were two options. The first was that they use some silver plated chain to take him out of the fight. That way they could attempt to free Ranma and Nabiki by giving them his blood. Then they would kill him. The other was a backup plan and that was to simply kill him if the first failed. Right now they had no idea what that would do to the other two vampires, but whatever it was, it was better than letting him get away.
X x x x x x
Ranma had it; she had a finger hold in the corner of her prison. Digging and clawing at the seam, her feet peddled against the floor as she pushed her fingers deeper in the wall. Grunting in exertion, she ignored the muted pleasurable sensations that her body was feeling as her jailer and Nabiki did things that made her blush. Suddenly her fingers punctured the prison, tearing small holes in it. Ranma would have gone further but she dropped to the floor as she suddenly felt everything from the outside world at once.
At the same time that happened, outside the other Ranma cried out in pain, and tumbled off the bed to lay awkwardly with her body half on the master vampire's coffin. Free from outside distractions, Ranma started to tear at the wall; small chips broke away from the invisible prison at first, but quickly larger pieces came free. Getting one hole bigger than the others, she pulled and pushed at it, desperate for her freedom.
"Stop it!" The fake Ranma appeared in front of her.
"Yea right!" Ranma yelled back.
"You might kill me!"
"All the better." Finally she had a hole big enough to pass through, and she dove out. Rolling, she jumped at the only other form, attempting to grab hold of her. The other Ranma avoided her grab, moving with the same speed Ranma possessed. "Hold still." She growled.
"I'll protect myself." The fake Ranma assumed a stance.
"I'm going to love kicking your ass."
X x x x x x
"Well this is great." Nabiki sat on the edge of the bed, having placed Ranma's comatose form up on it in a haphazard fashion. She had quickly cleaned herself off after getting over having her bed partner suddenly drop into a coma, putting on the same pajama's Ranma had put her in during the day since she didn't want to go diving into Ranma's wardrobe. The other vampire was covered by a towel and Nabiki had done a little bit to clean her off.
She was worried about the crazy girl. Nabiki hated Ranma for doing this to her but it would be infinitely worse if something had happened to her former brother in law. "You got me into this, you can't turn into a vegetable on the first night after you got into my panties." She could only imagine Akane's reaction if she found out that Ranma, or someone running Ranma's body, had done that with Nabiki.
Resting her hand on Ranma's wrist, she wondered what the real Ranma had gone through before being altered into this. Living here all alone with that vampire, adjusting to this without anyone for support. Nabiki couldn't see how anyone capable of rewriting someone's personality could be supportive. Horrible was the only way she could describe it.
She jumped in shock when Ranma sat up straight in the bed, her eyes looking around wildly before settling on Nabiki. "I－ I'm free." Ranma whispered, a look of pure joy washing over the red head's face.
"You're what?" Nabiki asked, worried about what the unstable vampire would do.
"Nabiki." Ranma switched emotions to one of utter devastation. "I'm so sorry!" She wailed, gathering Nabiki up in a hug. "I couldn't do anything." She cried into Nabiki's shirt.
"Is it really you?" Nabiki sat without doing anything as Ranma started to squeeze her tightly.
"Yes, I killed that copy." Ranma pulled away, smiling sadly. "If it wasn't for those chains Cologne put on me I don't think I would have ever gotten free."
"Free from what?"
"I'll tell you later, we have to get out of here." Ranma looked around nervously. "No that won't work, he'll be able to find us." The smaller girl slumped into herself. "I can't go back, I can't let him do that to me again." She started to hyper ventilate. "You gotta kill me Nabiki."
"What do you mean kill you?" Nabiki wasn't about to let Ranma get out of this and leave her.
"Please－ I can't do it myself." Ranma begged, kneeling on the bed in front of her with her hands clasped in front of her chest. "Don't let him do that to me again."
"You want me to deal with this alone?" Nabiki frowned at Ranma.
"I－ no." Ranma bowed her head. "He－ locked me away in a box, it was dark during the day, and I saw everything she did at night."
"Then we have to stop him before he realizes what's happened." Nabiki tried to imagine what Ranma had been going through and couldn't.
"He can read our minds, as soon as we try anything, he'll be able to stop us." Ranma explained.
"What about if he's distracted?"
"It'd be our only chance."
They had no time to discuss a plan before the lock to the apartment door caught Nabiki's ears. Ranma's eyes immediately widened in horror and she looked around fearfully. 'Damn it Ranma, calm down you idiot or else he's going to realize what's going on.' She wanted to tell the other vampire but the one causing Ranma's distress would hear.
"Come out girls, we have guests." Her Master's voice called out as the door closed.
"Just a second." Nabiki called out. Cupping her hands around Ranma's left ear she tried to whisper in the lowest voice she could. "Play the part." Ranma nodded, closing her eyes, and seeming to realize what she needed to do already.
Out in the main room of the apartment she found the master vampire and two humans, Shampoo and Cologne. Shampoo was being held captive by her Master, while Cologne was trying to make him explode with her glare.
"Where is the other?" He asked her.
"Ranma's getting dressed." She answered, wondering how exactly she should be acting.
"A birthday gift." He forcibly pulled a round pendant hanging from Shampoo's neck, and threw it to her. Catching it out of the air without any difficulty, she briefly inspected it, finding it to be a bland gray color on the outside. "They honestly thought that it would protect this one from us." He explained cruelly, breathing in deeply through his nose next to Shampoo's neck. "Throw the staff away."
Cologne looked at her long staff once before throwing it to fall at the vampire's feet. "How did you know what we were planning?" She demanded.
"I read the doorman's mind every time I enter. I saw you and this tasty morsel here getting information from him." He explained, sitting down in the plush chair, and forcing Shampoo to sit in his lap.
Nabiki looked between the three with a sense of dread. She could literally feel the fear coming off of Shampoo like waves that broke over her. The situation made her think of what she now knew Ranma had to deal with. Having to watch a situation that she was powerless to stop.
"Don't worry my dear." The vampire purred to Shampoo, his right hand wrapped around from the back of her neck to grip her throat. "You're too beautiful to let die. It'd be much better if you existed as my pretty little servant for eternity, don't you think."
"Shampoo say no." The purple haired girl replied defiantly.
"Hello Master." Ranma butted in, speaking in a bubbly voice, and skipping from the room in pajamas to stand at the side of the male vampire.
"I was wondering when you would show up." He laughed to himself. "Isn't it nice of your friends to come searching for you?"
"Uh－ yes Master." Ranma nodded absently.
"Go and make sure she doesn't move." He told Ranma and then looked to her like the same order applied. They both stood on opposite sides of Cologne and slowly gripped her small arms just to keep her in place.
'Please, please, please don't hurt me.' Nabiki prayed to herself, imagining that the old woman could still cause a great deal of pain to her.
"Once I've turned your precious great granddaughter into one of us, I think I'll keep you around to be her first meal." Laughing evilly to himself, he didn't wait before sinking his fangs into Shampoo's throat.
Nabiki watched as he began to drain Shampoo of blood. 'This is it, that's how it happened with me.' She let go of Cologne's arm, forgetting that she was supposed to be helping with this horrible act. Nabiki was happy that she didn't remember it, seeing the pained look on Shampoo's face. Movement to her right caught her attention. It was Ranma clearing the distance to where the vampire sat draining Shampoo. He released Shampoo's neck, staring in surprise at Ranma, who grabbed Cologne's staff, and plunged it through his chest, impaling him to the chair. His eyes were wide, his arms hanging out to the side, and his blood coated mouth open in shock.
Shocked herself by the sudden violence, her eyes caught Shampoo trying to stem the blood coming from her neck, and found that she couldn't look away from the red liquid. Even when Cologne grabbed her and yanked her towards the staked vampire, she couldn't stop. If she hadn't already drained someone of blood earlier, there would have been nothing to stop her from attacking Shampoo.
"Snap out of it!" Cologne hit her in the head.
"Wha－ what?" She asked, forcibly dragging her eyes from the blood.
"You need to take blood from him." Cologne pointed towards the soon to be dead vampire.
"Why?" Nabiki didn't want to take anything into herself from him.
"You're a servant vampire, if he dies, you'll likely die as well. If you take blood you'll be free. So just do it!" Cologne shoved her towards the man and went to help Shampoo.
"Help－ me." The master vampire weakly and weakly tried to grab at her.
"Like you helped me?" Nabiki smirked sinisterly and grabbed his arm. Ranma needed no prompting and actually latched on to his neck. She was more discrete and simply bit into his wrist.
X x x x x x
"Why did you help us?" Ranma asked Cologne while pulling away from the still living vampire. He was clinging to life, even after being stabbed through the heart by a wooden stake, and having nearly all of his blood drained by her and Nabiki. Licking some last drops of blood from her lips, she could feel it, he wasn't her Master anymore.
A toothy grin spread over her face and she drew back her hand into a knife strike that chopped off his head. It bounced several times before coming to a rest face down. So much more, she wanted him to suffer in a way that made her captivity seem tame. Unfortunately she knew no way to do that so being able to mutilate his corpse would have to suffice.
"Don't think of it as saving you." The elderly woman answered, having found a first aid kit in the bath area, and applying a bandage to Shampoo's neck. "I need information about vampires, information that's not going to fail when needed."
"Like this thing?" Nabiki held up the amulet.
"Yes like that." Cologne finished with Shampoo's neck. "So what better way to get information than to ask the source? Maybe start with how you're yourself again?"
"I think those chains you wrapped me in did it. That bastard put me in this box inside my head, when those chains were on me, it became kind of like jello, when－ something was happening earlier, I was able to get out and kill her in my head." Ranma explained, skipping over the lesbian sex that Nabiki had been engaged in with Ranma's body.
"No lasting effects?"
Ranma blinked several times, considering Cologne's question. Everything had happened so fast, she felt like she always did right now, but then again the clone seemed to think that as well. "Seems like it." She finally answered, resolving to be diligent in making sure she didn't start with for that bastard to be back in her life.
"Shampoo sorry she fail." The purple haired girl told the elderly woman.
"None of that, it was my fault." Cologne rolled up her left sleeve to expose a pair of dark circular scars on the top of her forearm. "I'm just sorry that you had to be marked for my mistake."
"Joketsuzoku wear scars with honor, no?" Shampoo smiled weakly.
"Yes we do." Cologne patted Shampoo on the shoulder.
"So what are we going to do now?" Nabiki asked her after the two had finished talking, putting as much distance as she could from Shampoo. Ranma was purposely not breathing to avoid being distracted, she would have to tell Nabiki that she didn't have to breathe soon.
"Burn the body." Cologne had a habitual reaction to reach for her cane before realizing that it was still buried in someone's chest. "I expect that he'll go up quickly."
"Wait on that a minute, I have stuff I don't want to lose." Ranma gathered up her laptop and music player and put them in a satchel bag she had bought shortly after the previous two to carry her little computer around. Packing up the clothing she actually liked in a duffel bag, she then dug through the file cabinet buried in the closet, and found documents detailing where the money had been kept as well as others for the fake ID that he used.
"Oh, I should probably get that too." She shifted the lifeless body of her former master and pulled out the wallet in the back of his pants. Checking the contents there was a credit card, some cash, and a fake picture ID. Throwing it all the duffel bag, she was finished with this place, and even if it wasn't going to be burned she would never return.
"Why are you taking that?" Nabiki asked her. The middle Tendo was hovering at the door, clearly wanting to leave as soon as possible.
"This worthless bastard." Ranma kicked the body. "Made me steal money from wealthy old men then he kept it all for himself." She shivered in disgust at a particularly unpleasant memory. "He's got it all saved in up an account."
Ranma was suddenly overwhelmed by the events of the past hour, falling into the couch to sit staring at the former vampire. "Please tell me this is real." She spoke in a tiny voice. "That I'm not just dreaming and he's really dead."
"This is real Ranma." Nabiki appeared in front of her, gripping her shoulders. The middle Tendo was smiling and even started to laugh. "Now snap out of it because I want to get home."
"Home." Ranma whispered, imagining what it would be like to see the humans she cared about again, while ignoring anything that could go wrong.
X x x x x x
Walking through Nerima towards the Nekohanten where everyone should be, Ranma felt strange being the only one carrying something. Well she was carrying multiple things, the duffel bag filled with the clothing she liked, her computer bag, and Cologne had decided to use her as a pack animal by riding on her head. She actually didn't mind, in fact she was happy that Cologne was treating her so casually after everything.
She was concerned about Shampoo though. Having been bitten by a vampire, it would have been highly possible for a small amount to have mixed with the vampire's saliva. If even a tiny amount had been pushed back into the girl's blood stream, then it would be a slow poison that would kill her, turn her into a ghoul, or even a vampire if it worked through her system fast enough.
"Shampoo, you feeling alright?" Ranma asked, the Joketsuzoku girl looking pale enough to be a vampire, and had none of her usual energy.
"Shampoo fine." She straightened up. "Thank Ai－ Ranma for concern." She added with a sad look directed at Ranma.
"Well if you start getting weaker you're probably not alright." Ranma cursed her former Master. The only way to find out if Shampoo was infected was to wait and if she was it was already too late.
"Shampoo will need a nice hot meal and some liquids before she can go to bed." Cologne laughed to herself. "I think this will be the first time food will be delivered to the Nekohanten."
"Why's that?" Ranma asked, confused over why they didn't have food available at a restaurant. The restaurant itself was finally within sight.
"Until I was convinced to try one more night, I was planning on leaving before sundown. So everything is packed up."
"I wonder how surprised everybody is going to be." She mused, being the first one to reach the building, and open the front door.
"Wait!" Cologne tried to warn her, but her foot had already passed the threshold. Vaguely Ranma felt Cologne leap away from her with her bags before Ranma was repelled with enough force to throw her halfway through the concrete wall on the far side of the street.
"This seems－ kind of familiar." She groaned, pulling herself back through the wall.
"I forgot to tell you that there's a one way barrier there." Cologne chuckled along with Shampoo and Nabiki. "Good to know that works."
"Nabiki!" Soun wailed, appearing next to his daughter, and hugging her. "You're alright!"
"Dad!" Nabiki exclaimed, squirming in her father's grasp, mortified over being seen in public being hugged by her father. Even though it was late and the street was deserted.
Any kind of happy reunion was halted when Akane saw Ranma standing off to the side. "You!" She pointed an accusing finger at her.
"Akane, wait." Nabiki tried to free herself from Soun without hurting him.
Ranma didn't know where Akane had found the stone maneki neko statue, but she knew how much it hurt when it was thrown at her, and caved her head in.
Her limbs twitched erratically and Ranma struggled to work out the strange feelings brought on by not having a brain. It actually felt rather pleasant in a way. Like when she would retreat into herself to get away from some situation her former Master had put her in. Noting that someone had removed the murder device from her head, there really wasn't much she could do when someone moved her inside of the building.
"What do you mean Ranma's still alive?" Nodoka asked as Ranma was set down somewhere.
'Sheesh give me a minute to pull my head back together.' Ranma would have rolled her eyes but they were still mush.
"Akane, that's the real Ranma now, not that crazy girl." Nabiki said to her sister.
"How was I supposed to know?" Akane answered. "And he's still a vampire."
"So am I now, are you going to stone me too?"
"You should finish this now, there's no more reason to put off ending this stain on the family honor." Nodoka spoke up again.
The statement of her mother made Ranma react instinctively, her head snapping back to normal, the blood that had escaped her even sucked back into her. "If you're going to kill me, at least let me be involved." Ranma spoke while sitting up, her sudden recovery making several of the humans jump. Now that she was free and no longer had someone torturing her, simply ending her life now was as attractive as it was when Nodoka first appeared in her life. "Sides, I'm in too good a mood to have someone shove a wooden stake into my chest." She added.
"I am also not going to see the one who saved my great granddaughters life be killed in front of me." Cologne gave her opinion.
Nodoka gripped her katana tightly, her lips pressed firmly together, and a look of distaste on her face. "Nothing further can be gained here." With a small bow, she grabbed Genma, and left.
"Such an－ awkward woman." Cologne remarked. "As much as I want to question these two, I need to attend to Shampoo, so if you would be so kind to return to your home."
"Yes we should go home." Soun announced.
"Tell me if Shampoo gets weaker." Ranma told the old woman.
"What would you do?" Cologne asked. "If she became a vampire she would die without the Master vampire."
"Doesn't mean I wouldn't want to be there." Ranma grabbed her things and followed the Tendo's out of the shop. Ukyo and Konatsu weren't in attendance, and Ranma knew the likely reason for that.
X x x x x x
Sitting down in the living room, Ranma adjusted her hearing so she couldn't hear Nodoka and Genma discussing her out in the dojo. She had listened for all of a minute before becoming disgusted by her mother who was more angry that she was being unmanly than a vampire who killed people. Genma was angry that she preyed on the weak. They were just going around in circles and Ranma was sick of hearing the word manly.
"Akane, I'm not going to bite." She said without looking back at Akane who was hiding behind the wall in the hallway. "You should probably get some sleep anyways."
"I can't go to sleep with a vampire in the house." The youngest Tendo stepped out quickly as if she hadn't been sitting there for the past five minutes spying on her. "You're really Ranma right? Not that－ whatever she was."
"If I was her I'd be crying over that bastard who made me into a vampire." Ranma smiled sadly at her former fiancée. "Akane is this a picture of me?" She held up a framed picture of the Tendo family, Genma, and a strange boy that she didn't know.
"What kind of question is that? Of course that's you." Akane came in and sat down across the table from her.
"I'm handsome." Gazing fondly at the teen in the picture, she couldn't connect the person contained in it with herself, but he looked so familiar that they could be twins.
"You're ego certainly isn't in trouble." Akane snorted.
Ranma bit down on her lower lip, her vision blurring red as she started to cry. "How could he?" She asked herself. "He said he was supposed to help and to guide me, to tell me what I needed to know." Her shoulders shook and the picture frame cracked under her grip. "But he used me, he treated me like a slave, he－." She couldn't think up a word that fit what he had done to her mind. Clutching the picture to her chest, she closed her eyes, and desperately tried to force the image of the young man on to herself.
"Are you alright?" Akane asked worriedly.
"No－ I'm not." Ranma admitted softly, standing up she left the youngest Tendo to go find the only person who might understand what she was going through, still clutching the picture to her chest.
X x x x x x
Snuggling deeper into the soft blankets of her bed, Nabiki frowned, popping open her eyes to look at the wall across the room. 'I'm not sleepy at all.' It wasn't even like she was too excited to sleep, she was very calm. Far calmer than she should be considering what had happened earlier in the night. She had her first meal as a vampire, got about midway through lesbian sex with a psychotic red head, and witnessed the death of the vampire master she didn't really know. She had even witnessed Ranma becoming a wet smear on the ground by her younger sister only to get up a minute later unharmed.
That she wasn't actually warm was worrying. Being cold blooded took a lot of fun out of simple things like curling up in a blanket. Without a knock, the door to her room swung open, and Ranma stepped in before closing it behind her. The red head didn't say anything before sitting down at the foot of her bed with a picture frame clutched her chest.
"We can't sleep at night, don't bother trying." Ranma said mechanically.
Sitting up, she glared at the other vampire. "So I should just give up and do everything a good little vampire is supposed to do?" She asked angrily.
"Why did you－ with her?" Ranma suddenly shifted into an uncomfortable subject.
"Why?" She quickly listened for the heartbeat of anyone listening in just to make sure her buzz saw of a sister wasn't going to pop in.
"Is it because she was a girl? Or someone who tried to act like a girl and wasn't just some guy in a girl's body?" Ranma asked quickly.
"What are you talking about?"
"This is me right?" Ranma held up a picture that showed her family and the two Saotome men.
"I can't remember." The other vampire dropped the picture to the bed. "When I first learned how to change forms－ he－ he－ punished me."
"Punished?" Nabiki asked, punished was such a vague word, that she had no way to figure out what had happened.
"He－ went into my head－ and－ and he took my body from me." Ranma's voice caught as she explained it. "I－ only know I'm a man because my memories couldn't be that of a girl."
"It's good that he's dead." Nabiki patted Ranma on the shoulder, having no clue how to comfort anyone. She was usually the one causing people to be distraught.
"And her." Ranma added, likely indicating the false personality.
"And her." Nabiki agreed.
"So then why did you－ with her?" The red head reminded Nabiki suddenly that this had started with Ranma bringing up earlier activities.
"That was." She struggled to answer. Thinking hadn't been her strongpoint earlier and she had assumed that Ranma would be like that forever. Having the real Ranma, who had been there for every moment suddenly want to know why, was a difficult thing to answer.
"You told me you loved me once just so you could jerk me around and torment me. Not even one night with her and you hop right in bed with her." Ranma's stared at her with an impossibly hard look. "Was it because I was a man?"
"Listen Ranma, earlier that was－ that was just because of." Nabiki floundered for a way to justify her actions without alienating Ranma. The other vampire had put her in a no win situation. "Ranma." She slid out from her blanket to slide over to Ranma's position. "Being a man wasn't why I never did anything with you." She answered, grabbing the sides of the smaller girl's head, and kissing her deeply. Ranma's eyes widened in shock momentarily before her eyelids drooped. The red head twisting on the bed to face Nabiki's body, bringing her legs up on the sheets.
Breaking off the kiss, Nabiki nearly slapped herself for doing that. "This may just be because I've been turned into an evil blood sucking monster, but it's like－ I don't know. When Akane hit you with that statue earlier I was terrified that you might be dead. When you were lying in that bed like a vegetable, I was so worried that you wouldn't wake up, and I'd have to face this alone."
"Idiot." Ranma got right up in Nabiki's face. "Our blood is the same now; we're closer than any twins. Didn't you hear when that crazy girl said she wanted a sister?"
"Then－ wait－ isn't that." She wasn't interested in incest.
"Monsters remember?" Ranma closed her eyes and Nabiki watched as the girl turned into a rough approximation of the original male form. "Did I get it right?" He patted down his chest before moving his hand to feel himself much lower. "Feels weird."
Nabiki's line of thought was derailed by Ranma's sudden change, having thought that she would have to look like she belonged in high school for all time. "How did you do that?"
"It's easy, just imagine what you want to be in your mind, and then make your body do it." Ranma was engrossed in feeling himself up like he had never been a boy before.
"Like this?" Her body was momentarily uncomfortable before she was a slightly more masculine version of herself. She imagined that she just looked like she had bound her breasts and she doubted that she got the details right between her legs.
"You make a very pretty boy." Ranma joked.
"So do you." He pointed out. Ranma may have become a man but his height hadn't increased and he looked like masculine woman. Deciding to mess with Ranma some more, he moved towards the other vampire with a sultry look. "We had the yuri earlier, want to finish with yaoi?" Nabiki had meant it as a joke but Ranma immediately looked at him like he was going to kill him. Shooting to the the far side of the bed, he brought up his hands in warding. "It was a joke! You know there's some fanfic out there that goes just like that."
"I'll never do anything with a man." Ranma's form melted back into a girl and she stared down at her lap. "Maybe when I was human－ if the circumstances were just perfect, if the planets aligned, and it was destined. But not after what I was forced to do. Not even with you."
Nabiki also went back to her real body, marveling briefly at how much control she had already. Changing into a guy might be an interesting diversion but now was not the time. "It's a good thing he's dead."
"But not before he wrecked my life, your's, and maybe Shampoo's."
"Well we should have a long time to pick up the pieces." Moving over to sit on the side of the bed with Ranma, she tried to imagine what the future would be like, but couldn't. She looked down when Ranma rested her hand on her thigh.
"It's horrible but I'm glad you're a vampire too." The red head smiled sadly. "Being alone like this, if he hadn't made it so I can't kill myself, I would have done it a long time ago."
"Say you're happy about that after I've been one more than a night." She laughed, knowing that there would be a lot she had to learn. Placing her own hand on Ranma's thigh, she traced her hand up and down it. She had never been this forward with anyone before, she just wanted to be as close to Ranma as possible. It could be that Ranma had become vitally important to her for dealing with her new life, it could be Ranma herself, or it could be some compulsion that the bastard who turned her had put in her head. The effect was still the same.
"Ya know I think that perverted copy isn't really gone." Ranma commented, leaning in towards her.
"Didn't you say she was?"
"Yea, but could you imagine me doing this otherwise?" Ranma smiled shyly, draping her arms around Nabiki's neck, and causing them to fall back on the bed. The red head looked down into her eyes. "And it's not like she didn't think she was the real Ranma. Maybe it was just me that was split, the parts he didn't like and the parts he did, and now we're back together."
"Good, because she did this amazing thing with her hands." Nabiki pecked Ranma on the cheek with a kiss and wrapped her arms around the other girl's waist to pull her down close to her. "Maybe being a vampire doesn't have to be all bad."
X x x x x x
And that's it. This came out of an idea to have a sidestory where Ranma had never told the Saotomes and Tendos after becoming a vampire. Which lead to me thinking about Alucard simply not being in Japan. There might be a sequel but don't hold your breath.