Ranma ½ was created by Rumiko Takahashi and distributed by Shounen Sunday Comics, Shogakukan, Kitty Animation, & Viz Media LLC.
Sekirei is created by Sakurako Gokurakuin and distributed by Young Gangan, Square Enix, Seven Arcs & Funimation Entertainment
No permission has been obtained from any of the copyright holders for the use of the characters and situations from these series. This work of fiction is not for profit and not intended to infringe on copyrighted intellectual property in any significant or harmful way. Should they, or any of their affiliates, request it this non-profit story will be taken off line as quickly as possible.
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Any original characters, however, are owned by me. If you steal them, I shall hunt you down and skewer your nuts. You want to use them? Just ask me first as I'll probably say yes.
Feedback is encouraged. That's why I write. Also for the cookies. And The Root Beer. The sweet, nectar-of-the-gods root beer.
Flames are pointless, as the author is a flaming retard.
...hold up, that's not what I meant. Uh, let's just start the story.
It's odd how little things can cause large changes in the span of destiny, like the flapping of a butterfly's wings causing a small displacement of the air that results elsewhere as a raging hurricane. Or how one man clapping could cause another man to dislocate the vertebrae in his back thousands of miles away. Or even how one simple cry could alter the events of one man in ways not many could even fathom.
Then again, considering the man in question... I doubt many of you readers would be surprised.
But such philosophical questions could be set aside for the moment as we see two unspecified people gathered in the small chinese restaurant in a far off part of the Nerima district of Tokyo. Those gathered could only stare at the rather intimidating yet comical sight before them while noting that the two feminine figures were either unaware or uncaring of their amazed glances.
The two women were in the midst of putting their seventh large bowl of ramen away and didn't look to be close to ending their meal any time soon. One of the girls was dressed in what could be described as a very loose interpretation of a shrine maiden outfit; It had the long white sleeves as well as the obi complete with long flowing bow tied in back. Her pink skirt in comparison however was rather short to the point of being called scandalous by some of the more judgmental people there. She wore brown flat shoes, accompanied by white thigh high socks and a pair of bright pink padded gloves, the kind used in professional fighting to protect the knuckles.
To her left sat another girl whose looks brought immediate attention towards her- and not just for her shocking bright red hair. Had they seen her face they would have been first drawn to her immersive grey-blue eyes before down a bit to her cute nose. Now what doesn't need to be said is that immediately after their gaze would drop further to the taunt bulges in her blue chinese long sleeve silk shirt. From what they could make the girl looked to be in her late teens and wore black silk pants and slippers on her feet to complete her look.
"Y'know," The red head spoke suddenly as she finished her latest bowl of ramen. "I don't think I thanked you for helpin' me out with that panda did I?"
The girl in the shrine maiden outfit shook her head as she finished her own bowl of ramen. "No, but you're welcome! And thank you for helping me out with those twins."
"'S no problem," the redhead shrugged as a confident gleam entered her eyes. "It's th' least I could do for ya in return."
"And you even helped me out when I got so hungry," the shrine maiden (?) smiled brightly at the redhead. "How can I ever repay you?"
The redhead srugged again, "Like I said, 's no biggie. But I guess you can start with why those girls were chasing you."
She sighed, "They wanna fight me because of the game, but I can't fight them. At least not until I find my Ashikabi."
The redhead just nodded, a slight moment of confusion played on her face, but the other girl never noticed. "So... um... I guess they jumped you so you couldn't find your... ashikaobi?"
"Ashikabi," the other girl corrected as their new bowls came to greet them. "Ah!" The girl exclaimed.
"Hmm?" the redhead asked.
"I just realized we've been helping each other so much and we've never introduced ourselves!" She stood up from her stool and bowed to the red head. "They call me Musubi. It's nice to meet you."
The redhead nodded. "Ah right... Nice ta meet ya Musubi. Names's Saotome Ranma."
"Saotome... Ranma," Musubi sighed as she picked up her new set of chopsticks. "After all you've done for me... you've been like a savior to me y'know?"
Ranma let out a small chuckle, "Well I am a martial artist. It's my duty to help people like you out y'know?"
Musubi nodded, "You're so nice Ranma-san... I just wish someone like you could be my Ashikabi-sama."
Ranma sighed, "Like I said Musubi, ya still ain't told me what that is." The red haired girl sighed as she lightly rubbed her forehead, wondering what she had gotten herself involved in.
And just why if felt that China was getting further away even as she was away from Genma...
A Ranma ½ - Sekirei Cross...
Random Act of Love
Feather 1: Love and Marriage (AKA Ranma meets the Tendos: Sekirei Edition)
"A fiancée? You better be kidding old man!"
People stopped in their mundane routine to see what the noise was all about. They then stared in amazement, as there was a panda in the middle of the street along with a young girl that was apparently its trainer. The animal then let of a growl as to the people's shock and horror, it charged in a mad dash at the young girl.
"So it's like that pops? Fine! I got no problems kicking your ass!" cried the girl as she charged the panda. The people remaining in the area however, looked on with awe as the giant panda threw a flurry of panda punches at the small red haired girl. Dodging nimbly, she flipped, ducked, and parried, avoiding all of them.
"Getting slow, old fart!" The girl smirked. Then she counter attacked. The girl launched punch after punch, and numerous kicks, but the panda just blocked them, growling and snarling all the while. Just when it looked like the panda was about to get the upper hand, the girl zipped in close and she delivered an uppercut to the panda, knocking it a few feet away from the girl.
The girl looked on for a few moments to ensure the panda did not rise to continue the assault. Satisfied that the panda was out of commission, she hefted her pack, and started back down the street. "Now ain't the time for a fiancée, I'm going back to China!"
As the young girl set off, the panda rose silently and grabbed a stop sign like he was uprooting a plant from the ground. The people still gathered let out another gasp of surprise a the feat of strength but the animal paid them no mind. Sneaking up behind the girl on its tiptoes, he raised the sign above his head and prepared to plaster her into the ground.
The red head blinked as he felt a gust of wind blow past her, and turned to find in her amazement to find the panda knocked unconscious in the middle of the street, the uprooted sign laying across it's chest. "The hell?" she muttered. And she looked and blinked, as just a bit beyond where her father had landed seemed to be someone's rump, showing off white panties for all the world to see from her upturned pink school skirt waving a bit back and forth.
"Ugh...ughoooo~," a moan came forth as the rump in question lowered and the girl righted herself with a hand going to her back and rubbing it a bit.
"Uh... are...are you ok?"
"Ow-owowow," she quickly chirped out as she got up and flattened her skirt down and stopped, looking around. "Oh!" she said as then quickly bowed. "I'm sorry, I'm sorry. Are you okay?"
The red head blinked before looking at the girl in strange clothes oddly. "I'm... I'm fine thanks. Thanks for the save by the way."
The girl in question stopped mid-bow and was at a forty-five degree angle and lifted her head. "Save?"
The redhead nodded and pointed to the panda on the ground, "Yeah. From that old thing."
The girl lowered her head and noticed the panda laid out cold in front of her. "Oooh, he's big." She then looked up to the redhead. "Was he strong?"
"I guess you could say that," the redhead shrugged. "Anyway, thanks for the help."
"My pleasure. I'm glad that I could help you but I have to go now!"
The red head opened her mouth to respond but stopped as she felt a cold shiver run up her neck. Without warning she shot forward and grabbed the girl in the strange clothes by the arm and pulled with as much strength as she could.
"Uwah!" Was all the other girl could manage to utter at the pull as she hit the ground, hearing something crash hard into ground from where she had just stood moments ago. The smell of burning ozone set her on edge and she quickly broke free from the redhead's grip.
"Hey there Number Eighty-Eight! Why you still runnin'?"
The redhead and the brunette turned towards the new voice, "The hell's goin' on now?" the redhead asked. As she looked up she had to gape at the sight before her. A pair of twins decked out in skimpy leather and seemingly nary a care to the weather conditions with as much of their skin was exposed. They stood tall with a slender build, both with long black hair pulled into twin ponytails and hazel eyes. The only difference was that one woman was decked out in a violet leather outfit and with larger breasts than her companion, who had on a pink outfit and a smaller chest.
As confident as they stood there, they might have even reveled in it. Their hands were clutched together and a ball of light cackling with energy rested in the center of their grip.
"I gotta learn that," the redhead muttered. "However they're doing that..."
"C'mon Number Eighty-eight," cried out one of the women decked in violet leather. "It's time we finished this!"
"Friends of yours?" the redhead muttered to the brunette.
The girl shook her head, bangs flapping as she did so as she then called out to them. "No! I can't! I haven't even found my Ashikabi yet!"
"Like that matters now," The violet one muttered. Turning to the redhead she pointed with her freehand and shouted, "WHOEVER YOU ARE, MIND YOUR OWN DAMN BUSINESS!"
Ranma gave a flat stare in return and blinked. "Excuse me?"
"Listen", the violet girl had called before taking another deep breath. "I don't know if you realize what you're in for, so I'd suggest you leave now! She's ours to take, so step aside!"
"Right..." Ranma muttered "I got no clue what you're talkin' 'bout but this girl helped me out just now and since you two ain't friends..." she grabbed the brunette's wrist and ran off. "See ya!"
"H-HEY!" Cried the violet one. "Get yer ass back here ya red-headed bimbo!"
"Calm down Hikari," sighed the one in pink. "Didn't you see that she wasn't reacting to the girl? We've got another chance."
"Yeah yeah, Hibiki," Hikari muttered as the redhead got further and further out of sight. "But still, we missed this chance."
"Even if that's the case, I don't think you know who would've let it been that way for long," Hibiki whispered as she pointed down.
Hikari followed the finger only to let out a grimace as she spotted the figure. It was a man who was decked in black from the mask that partially covered his mouth and nose, to the long black trench coat and matching gloves. The only thing that could be made out on the person as he leaped from rooftop to rooftop effortlessly was his silver locks, darker than the moon's own surface.
"Oh great..." she muttered. "How does that jerk-off always know where to find us?"
"It's his job," Hibiki replied. "Let's move. We might luck out and run into Eighty-Eight again."
Hikari nodded and the twins disappeared into the Nerima streets.
"Ahhh," Ranma cooed as she patted her stomach contently. "That hit the spot!"
"Did you like it Ranma-san?" Musubi asked as she finished off her eight bowl of ramen.
"You better believe it," Ranma nodded as she put her feet up on the table. "I didn't know I was that damn hungry 'til I got started. We really lucked out findin' this place an' all."
"Isn't that great Ranma-san?" Musubi chirped. "It's just a shame you can't be my Ashikabi. With all you've helped me with, it's almost like destiny that we've met."
Ranma sighed scratching her red hair idly, "So are you ever gonna tell me what the hell an Ashikabi is Musubi?"
"An Ashiakbi is an Ashikabi, Ranma-san," Msubi answered. "An Ashikabi is someone I've been searching for a very long time."
"Ah hah..." Ranma sighed. "Still got no clue what that means but good luck with that."
"Thank you Ranma-san," Musubi nodded at her.
"Excuse me," came the voice of their waiter. "Here's the hot water you requested young lady. Are you ready for the bill now?"
"Yeah sure," Ranma nodded distractedly as their host placed the water on the table. "Welp, I guess it's about time..."
"Ranma-san?" Musubi asked, not understanding.
"It was nice meetin' ya Musubi," Ranma began as she rose from her seat. "But I really gotta be goin' soon. I gotta get to China an' get things back ta normal." Musubi tilted her head, still confused and a little saddened by her friend leaving. "Good luck with your Asherzabi thing or whatever," Ranma continued as she reached for the glass. "And watch out for any pandas."
"O-okay! Oh! Ranma-san!"
"Eh?" Ranma blinked as Musubi sat up suddenly, shifting the table. "Woah, slow-!"
All at once, the table seemed to shift, causing the empty bowls and glass to shift and fall towards the young martial artist. Ranma could only sigh in resignation as the hot liquid landed on him, staining his clothes and causing her body to shift higher by a few centimeters. Her chest was no longer jutting out as much and her clothing seemed to fit a bit tighter. "Well that happened," a much lower pitched voice sighed softly. ""I'm sorry about this...I didn't want you to see me this way..."
"Ranma-san?" Musubi blinked.
"I guess maybe now you'll be freakin' out 'bout it, but it's a long story," Ranma sighed. "And it's all my pop's fault."
Musubi then walked past him. "Ranma-san! Ranma-san!" She called out and began to spread out away from where he was. "Where are you?"
"Musubi?" Ranma blinked as the sekirei continued to look around. "What're you doin'?"
"Ranma-saaan!" Musubi called out again, holding her cupped hands to her mouth help make her voice travel.
"Musubi, I'm right here," Ranma replied.
Musubi blinked at what he said and tilted her head and frowned. "Ranma-san is a girl."
"Musubi, I'm Ranma." Ranma replied.
Musubi shook her head. "Musubi won't be fooled!"
"Look Musubi, I'm Ranma. The girl was just my cursed form," Ranma sighed. "I can prove it." He clasped her hand and dragged her back towards the bathrooms. "Come on!"
"That's amazing Ranma-san!" Musubi clapped as she and Ranma re-took their seats.
"Not really no, but you're taking this a lot better than I thought," Ranma sighed.
"So are you a magician as well as a martial artist?"
"I'm no magic guy, it's a curse. I got it while me an' pops were in China."
"A curse?" Musubi blinked, tilting her head at the unfamiliar term.
"All ya need to know is that they're bad and to avoid 'em at all costs." Ranma shrugged. "I'm goin' back to China to get rid of it."
"China?" Musbui asked, tilting her head in confusion. "Is that close to Nerima?"
"Um... no," Ranma sighed. "It's a far far off place from here. I was tryin' to go back there when you helped me out with that panda before those thunder twins showed up."
"Oh," Musubi muttered, looking down with a sad look on her face. "So... so are we not gonna see each other again?"
"I wouldn't say that..." Ranma sighed as he rubbed the back of his head. "I... I mean ya never know right?"
"Really?" Musubi chirped as she looked back up to the cursed martial artist.
"Yeah... yeah I guess..." Ranma shrugged as he stood up and gave a light strech. "Who knows? By the time I get back with my cure you might've found your Ashizabi or whatever."
"Sure, why not?" Ranma shrugged again as he tilted his head towards the door, "Look I gotta go. Thanks for the grub Musubi." Without turning, he waved his hand at her and walked out the door; turning left and putting both hands in his pockets as he joined the crowded street.
Unnoticed behind him, Musubi watched him leave before placing a hand on her heart and looked downward.
Ranma had the distinct feeling that he was being followed.
A sound and an odd, prickling sensation on the back of his neck alerted him and with narrowed eyes Ranma turned to look behind him, seeing no one of interest before he lowered his gaze and shoved his hands into his pockets; continuing on his quest to be cured. Irritated thoughts of pandas and surprise engagements entered his head for a moment before that feeling that he was being followed returned. He suppressed the prickling sensation that now flowed across his spine as he turned around again. His eyes widened as he spotted a sprout of a familiar brown ahoge hair poking out amongst the non-descript crowd.
'Nah, I'm imaging things,' he thought to himself. 'Ain't no way it's her...' he sighed cursing silently to himself at the same time for his distraction. Not that one could blame him. It had been the first time that the pigtailed marital artist could remember being able to talk to a girl without the threat of death hanging over his head or the old man butting in. And... well... she was pretty cute.
'And there it is again,' Ranma thought in irritation as he felt the prickling sensation traversed across his back stronger. He turned around once more and once he got a good look, he knew that he was, indeed, being followed by Musubi. The girl let off a slight gasp as their eyes met, but smiled brightly as she attempted to get closer to the aqua transsexual martial artist. Ranma frowned and turned away, as nice as the girl was and as thankful for her help with the old man as he was he didn't have time to hold her hand while she searched for her ashizabimaru or whatever the hell she was looking for.
With that though in mind Ranma looked up for a moment before vaulting skyward, unmindful of the awed stares he received as he landed on the nearby roof of a non-descript building. "Sorry Musubi, but I got things to do," he whispered to himself before vaulting to the next rooftop.
Only to pause as that odd tingle raced up his back again with a vengeance. He turned his head back in time to see Musubi vaulting over the roof and landing on the one he had just vacated from. Before he could turn back to leave Musubi suddenly landed beside him. "Mu-Musubi! Why're you followin' me?!"
Musubi stayed crouched for a few more seconds and Ranma's concern raised a notch. The girl looked to be breathing hard, her shoulders rising and falling. Slowly, she rose and turned her head to face him, her brown eyes locking onto Ranma's cobalt blue. Ranma almost took a step back at how clouded they were and wondered what could have happened within the last few minutes when he left her.
Her face was flushed and she was continuing to pant heavily. "I... I don't know Ranma-san..." she got out.
"Are... are you okay?" Ranma asked as he frowned and took a step closer to check on her. "You got a fever or somethin'?"
"I... I don't know," she sighed, putting a hand on her impressive chest. "I... I am feeling... hot..."
"Oh man..." Ranma muttered as he leaned closer to her to put a hand on her forehead. "Damn it... You're burning up."
"R... Ranma-san..." She got out, her voice beginning to lose strength. "I... how... come..."
"Easy, Musubi." Ranma said as he put his other hand on her shoulder -
Only to pause as Musubi's hand shot up to grab his shirt and pulled him closer to her.
"What... what should I do Ranma-san?" She asked and Ranma's brow furrowed at the strange shift in the tone of her voice. Where the other one she seemed to be losing the ability to talk, this new one sent chills down his spine. Though he couldn't quite decide if it was a bad way either. "My body... just keeps... getting... hotter..."
"M-M-M-Musubi?!" Ranma squeaked, his tone an octave higher than usual and more closely resembling his voice when he was in his girl form. He tried to swallow but the lump in his throat made the action impossible. With Musubi this close he felt as if he couldn't move; Not a single technique that he could think to use to extract him from this perilous situation came to mind yet oddly enough at the same time he found his pulse racing and his senses keying to heightened levels of awareness. It was something similar to what he felt when going into battle though battle was the farthest thing from his awareness at the moment.
"WHOEVER YOU ARE, STEP AWAY!" cried a female voice, distracting Musubi long enough for Ranma to break out of her grip.
Ranma placed a hand on his chest to calm his heart. "Ah... hah?" Ranma absently asked, not daring to blink as he kept staring round-eyed at the intruders who stood before them. "Oh... it's you perverts again," he sighed out; inwardly relived at the distraction they provided for the moment.
"WHO'RE YOU CALLIN' A PERVERT, YOU ASSHOLE?!" Hikari shouted at Ranma.
"Well when ya dress like that in this weather what else ya want me to call you?" Ranma asked irritably. "So what'cha want ya pervert?"
"This guy right here..." Hikari grumbled as a crackle of lightning danced around her fist.
"Calm down, Hikari," Hibiki gently chided. "We don't want this to escalate any more do we?"
"Yeah calm down pervert," Ranma nodded as he eyes the twins warily while keeping himself in front of Musubi protectively. "Let's keep it all nice an' civil like, ok?"
Hikari let out a growl of irritation, but managed to keep her hand stayed as Hibiki addressed Ranma. "Listen... for your own good I would recommend that you don't even think about wanting to wing that one. Just please stand aside, and you can go on with your life and be spared the pain of the game."
"Winging?" Ranma blinked, eyeing Musubi in concern out of the corner of his eye. "Game? 'The hell are you talkin' 'bout?"
Hibiki sighed, giving Ranma a hard gaze. "Look... what I'm about to tell you is still pretty much a secret at the moment, but as you've no doubt guessed my sister and I along with number eighty-eight behind you are not human. We've been released to find our Ashikabi, however once they're found we sekirei and our Ashikabi will be forced into playing a Game we have no choice to play."
"Again; what the hell are you talking about?" Ranma frowned. "So you want me ta buy that you two pervs and Musubi are some sorta weird freak chicks? Like that's why you dress like that? And what th' hell is an Ashikabi?!"
Hibiki sighed, "Look-"
"Save it sis," Hikari growled. "This kid's too dumb to get it so I'll explain it for ya. Step away from number eighty-eight and let us take care of her! Or not and get hurt."
"I think I'll pass ya loony perv," Ranma growled. "Who know what a freak like you'd do to my friend here?"
"Oh I'm really gonna enjoy kickin' your ass," Hikari growled as she launched herself at the pigtailed martial artist and conveniently missing her twin's icy glare replaced now with a look of panic.
"Hikari Dont!" she cried out futilely. "You know the rules!"
Ranma's eyes narrowed into icy blue slits as Hikari's fist surged forward glowed with electrical power. To Hikari's surprise the pigtailed martial artist dashed forward, sliding out of the path of her fist and countering with a quick sweep of her legs, sending the electric sekirei face first onto the rooftop and covering her face with the grimy remains of rain water and mud that laid atop the building roof. The sekirei groaned from her prone position as she rose to wipe her face clean of the gunk.
"Yeah, I'm thinkin' my decision was the right one ya pervy freak," Ranma smirked. "I ain't in the mood to fight but I ain't about to let ya mess with Musubi on my watch." As he finished his declaration, the aqua transgendered martial artist spun back around catching an expected punch with his left hand. He held in a grimace that threatened to break across his face and managed to sigh as his eyes met Hibiki's surprised hues. "Can't you just leave her alone?"
Hibiki's surprised look was replaced with a determined gaze, "Believe me or not, I'm doing this for her own good."
"Suit yourself," Ranma replied as he pulled back, rammed his elbow into Hikari's gut and threw the woman's body atop her twin sisters unceremoniously. A single forward step and before the twins could react, Ranma had bolted forward to where Musubi sat and picked her up bridal style before leaping over the rooftop.
"You arrogant little jerk!" Hikari cried out as Hibki rolled off her twin. "You're not gettin' away from me!"
"Yeah, I doubt that," Ranma muttered as he and Musubi continued their free fall. "Hold on Musubi... I'll get us gone soon enough."
"So... hot... Ranma... san." Musubi whispered in a daze.
"Don't speak," Ranma whispered back to Musubi. "Just-!" He was cut off as he had to suddenly dodged to the right and avoid Hikari shooting down like a rocket with her fists extended. He grimaced as he could practically taste the power flowing freely from her hands; sparks of electricity tingling across his face. "I'll give that perv some credit... she's determined to lose to th' best."
As he landed, he barely had time to put Musubi down before he dodged Hikari's latest charge. The pigtailed wonder ducked forward and to the left, causing his alien opponent to miss him entirely. He then spun around and slammed an open palm in between her shoulders, causing Hikari to grimace as she clutched her shoulder in pain. She growled and quickly stood and rocketed forward, clenching and throwing a punch at Ranma's stomach with her good hand. In turn, Ranma caught her fist and using her momentum threw her aside into a pile of garbage.
Ranma sighed as he picked up Musubi in his arms again and gave Hikari a pitying look, "Y'know... if ya weren't so busy huntin' my friend down for ya weird pervy cosplay thing you got goin' you could've avoided all this y'know?"
"You son of a bitch," Hikari growled as she worked her way out from trash. "You just don't know when to shut your mouth do ya?"
"All I'm sayin' is ya could've avoided bein' taken out like the trash you are if you went about this a better way or somethin'." Ranma shrugged. "All I know is my friend needs to see a doc so if you'll excuse me, we gotta go now."
"I don't think s-!" Hikari was cut off mid-threat as she stared helplessly at the sight before her, "Damnit, no!"
Ranma for his part stood still while his face redden deeper than any tomato as Musubi had managed to cup his face after he had attempted to give her a quick once over before leaving to find a doctor. "Musubi wha-!" was all he managed to get out as Musubi brought his face down to hers.
"I...I've found you," she breathed out, voice no higher than a whisper.
Before Ranma could ask what she meant he suddenly froze as he felt her lips touching his. His blush deepened as the contact continued, a part of his mind idly realizing that this was his first kiss. A first kiss that was kind of nice, not that he had anything to base it on. Still, it didn't explain what the heck was going on with Musubi, nor the wings of light that had protruded from her back.
Waaaaaaaaaaaait a minute.
Ranma looked down out of the corner of his eye as he managed to spot a few tendrils of a glowing pink light coming from behind Musubi. They seemed to resemble wings and he could feel them envelop his arms in a soothing, warm feeling. Before he could properly freak out, Musubi had broken the kiss and her smile widened a bit as her gaze fully focused on him. Her eyes looked at him with more emotion and warmth than he could ever remember seeing directed at him and she whispered-
"Ah... huh?" Ranma replied dumbly as he stared at Musubi's smiling face.
"Damn, looks like you've really stepped in it." Hibiki sighed as she descended from the roof.
"Huh?" Ranma replied.
"But since she's chosen you as her Ashikabi, we won't interfere with you two anymore." She continued as she helped her twin out of the pile of garbage. "I hope you're ready for the heavy duty you two will have to face."
"Wait, wait, wait," Ranma grunted out as he set Musubi on the ground. "Ya wanna stop bein' so cryptic and tell me what the hell is-?!"
Ranma was unable to finish as he felt a sharp, hard pain in the back of his head. The pigtailed martial artist was quickly knocked out, falling unceremoniously on his face to the pavement. The twins and Musubi could only stare in shock as a panda holding a stop sign in its paws.
"Ah!" Musubi gasped in recognition. "You're the bear Ranma-san was fighting before!"
"..." went the twins as they stared at the scene before them.
The panda paid Musubi no heed as it tossed the boy onto one shoulder. He gave the gathered women a warning snarl as it headed in its initial direction. "Wait a sec Mr. Panda!" Musubi cried as she ran off after them. "You've got my ashikabi with you!"
Faster than anyone could guess a bear could run it ran off at seemingly inhuman speeds with Musubi hot on its heels. It resembled a comedic chase video that had been set on a smooth fast forward, leaving Hikari and Hibiki sitting alone with each other dumbfounded at the sight.
"Hikari..." Hibiki whispered as she blinked as she then heard a large crash followed by a geyser of water that could be seen over the tree line.
"Did that really just happen?"
Hikari sighed as she threw a piece of paper out of her hair, "Got me. All I know is... I need a shower ASAP. Probably something strong to drink too."
"Sounds like a plan to me," Hibiki muttered in agreement. "Good thing we're off tomorrow."
"Like that would've stopped me." Hikari muttered as they made their way back home.
[Tendo Training Hall. Challengers, please enter from the rear]
The panda eyed the sign with an odd look in its eyes. One might say it was joy. One could also say it was resignation. Then again who can read a panda's eyes anyway?
"Damn it you stupid old fart, put me down!" cried the girl who was slung over the bear's shoulder. The bear simply grunted in irritation as he entered the gate, preparing to ring the doorbell.
"At least get some hot water!" Ranma cried in frustration.
"Ranma-san!" Came a far off familiar cry.
Ranma blinked as he heard the weird girl's voice, "Musubi?"
The bear blinked as he looked to the sky. No... no it couldn't be. He was just imagining things. Nodding to himself at his reasonable explanation, the bear reached out and rang the doorbell. As this happened, a familiar figure came like a rocket towards the cursed martial artists, her outfit heavily damp and a thermos bottle in one hand as she cheerfully waved to them.
"Ranma-san!" Musubi cheerfully cried out.
"Musubi! How'd you find us?" Ranma asked before he started to punch at his father, "Damnit y'old fart lemmie go!"
"Ranma-san! I brought you hot water!" Musubi chirped happily as she approached the boy-turned-girl and held it out in front of her.
The Panda's eyes widened as she neared. This was going to be a problem!
It was at that moment the door opened.
"Gaah!" Soun cried as he backed away from the door. "Wild panda?!"
Akane called out to her sisters, "Nabiki, Kasumi! Stand back, it might be dangerous!"
"You hear that, Pop?" the girl asked, "You're scaring them! Put me down so I can explain what's going on!"
Soun stared at the redheaded figure as the bear did as commanded before saying, "Are you...?"
The figure looked sheepishly back and said, "Saotome Ranma. Sorry 'bout this."
Nabiki continued to stare, then slowly she began to smile again and replied, "Oohhh...he is cute! And such exotic looks, too. A real live bishonen!"
"A what?" Ranma responded ever so smoothly as the panda began to try to remove Musubi from the entrance again.
"Hey!" she cried and suddenly laid a chop onto the cursed bear's head, stunning him. "Bad! That's a bad boy!"
"At last!" Soun was all but sobbing again as he moved forward to put his arms around Ranma and conveniently ignoring the background event, "You have no idea how long I have waited for this moment...!" The Tendo patriarch tensed up as he held Ranma close in his embrace. Soun's hands began to explore the boy's dimensions as if trying to puzzle something out. He then held Ranma out at arm's length and stared down at the stranger with a look of utter perplexion.
"Yeah," Ranma muttered as he looked Soun in the eyes. "They're real."
"Huh?" Akane asked in a curious tone as Musubi came up to her ashikabi.
"Daddy, I thought you said Ranma was a boy!" Nabiki moaned in disappointment.
"I-I don't understand," Soun stammered, "I was certain Genma's son would be male…"
"Well it's kinda hard for me to be a guys since I'm a girl and all," Ranma chirped. "Sorry to let you down Tendo-san." She gave a sly smirk at the panda beside her who growled in response. "Sorry to be a disappointment and all since I'm not a guy."
"But... but the pledge..." Soun muttered.
"Yeah it's too bad," Nabki muttered as she looked at her nails distractedly. "You'd make a sexy bishonen if that were the case."
"Gee thanks," Ranma muttered. He turned to Musubi who had poked him in the side. "Yeah?"
"I thought you were a boy Ranma-san," Musubi stated looking at her Ashikabi in confusion as she still held the thermos in her hands.
"Not right now Musubi," she hissed back.
"I don't believe you two!" said Akane, causing the gathered group to turn and look at her in surprise, "Boy or a girl she's still our guest! Is this any way to treat her?" She stepped forward and at once adopted a friendly greeting, "Hiya, my name's Akane. Would you like to go somewhere?"
"Uh…ok," the redhead said hesitantly, "Where would you like to go?"
"How about to the dojo?" Akane smiled, "We can work out together. You study Kempo, right?" She then looked at Musubi as the girl looked between Ranma and the thermos in her hands. Weird. Anyway, "And you too, right?"
"Ken...po?" Musubi asked, putting her pointer finger on her face as she looked up to the ceiling.
"Uh, yeah," Ranma replied uneasily, "A little."
"Great!" Akane beamed, "Then we can spar to see how good you are."
"Spar?" Musubi repeated with a light gleam entering her eyes.
"Yeah!" Akane chirped. "It'll be fun."
"Uh wait a…" Ranma started to protest when Musubi took her by the wrist and hurried her along.
"Come on Ranma-san, let's go spar!" Musubi chirped.
"Woah, slow down Musubi!" Ranma cried as the girls left for the dojo. Nabiki sat where she was for only a few seconds before frowning. There was something very odd going on around here, but she just couldn't figure out what.
"But Ranma... why aren't you a boy Ranma...?" Soun muttered.
"Oh daddy," Nabiki muttered as she took note of the thermos the other girl left behind.
The new arrivals walked forward softly, the redhead studying the interior of the building with relaxed interest, like an art collector studying a potential buy. She nodded, as if in approval of the structure. "Nice place ya got here," Ranma said in a respectful soft tone.
"Isn't it?" Akane asked as she allowed a bit of pride to enter her voice. "We've had this place for generations."
"I can feel the history," Ranma nodded. "I'd love it if I could have a place like this someday."
"Too bad you can't," Akane replied. "There's no place in the world like our dojo you know."
"Yeah I figured," Ranma answered. "Girl can dream, can't she?"
"No harm in that," Akane agreed. "So... how you two wanna do this?"
Musubi immediately shot her hand in the air. "I wanna go first!"
"Eh?" Ranma blinked as she turned to her Sekirei. "Are you sure Musubi?"
Musubi turned to the redhead and nodded vigorously, the gleam in her eye stronger now. "Musubi wants to see just how strong Akane-san is!"
Akane chucked at the buxom girl's exuberant response. Giving Musubi a bright, charming smile Akane threw a thumb over her shoulder. "I've got a spare set of workout clothes if you wanna get changed. Then maybe we can really see who's better between my style and yours."
"Right!" Musubi cried as she clenched her fist in determination.
"Great, let's go!" Akane chirped as she clasped Musubi's hand and pulled her towards the changing room. "I think you're close to Nabiki's size and she barely uses it anymore so you should be fine. Just don't tell her, ok?"
"Ok!" Musubi chirped as they disappeared into the changing room.
Unseen, Ranma arched her eyebrow at the display, puzzled at a feeling of concern filling her. "It'll be ok, right?"
Several minutes later the girls stood in front of each other at the center of the haloed dojo; Akane dressed in a yellow dogi with a red sash around her waist and her long lavender hair tied up in a loose ponytail while Musubi stood several feet in front of her. Of the two girls it was Musubi who was bouncing up and down, doing her best to keep herself from lunging at Akane right then and there. For this, Musubi was dressed in a borrowed white dougi with a green sash.
And one would take care to note how much the dougi was struggling to hold her bountiful... assets in place.
"Musubi, you better take it easy ok?" Ranma spoke up as she made her way in-between them to act as the referee for this spar. "Remember it's just a spar. No need to go all out."
"Right Ranma-san!" Musubi chirped, her fists clenching so tightly you could almost hear the tendons popping. The youngest Tendo daughter almost blinked in confusion at the display. Did she really want to fight that badly?
'Well,' she smirked internally as she took up her usual fighting stance. 'If she's that rarin' to go who am I to disappoint her?'
Almost as if reading her opponent's mind, Musubi took her stance as well. A determined grin crossed her face as their eyes met.
"All right," Ranma raised her hand high into the air before lowering it in a chopping motion between them. "Begin!"
As soon as Ranma spoke, Musubi lunged forward like a cannon, and Akane barely slipped to the left side and dodged the attack. 'Damn she's fast!' Akane thought wide-eyed as she quickly tucked and rolled away from her opponent and got back to her feet, barely able to twist her head and dodge Musubi's blindingly fast right hook. Akane then dashed forward, cocking her right leg back and sending it towards Musubi's stomach. Ranma's sekirei prepared to block the incoming kick, but at the last second Akane brought her foot down on Musubi's lead foot, stapling her lead leg to the ground. They paused just long enough for give off a small grin of victory as she landed a hard right in Musubi's side.
Only to grunt in pain as Musubi's fist smashed against Akane's unguarded abdomen, and the impact was so surprisingly hard that it threw her off-balance. Freed from her temporary imprisonment Musubi pressed the attack, and once more Akane was on the defensive. The sheer speed of Musubi's barrage was making it harder and harder to find an opening again. And for every small opening that would present itself, When Akane would attack it her opponent wouldn't even notice it.
'Damn this girl is strong!' Akane thought in frustration as she tried to push down that sense of panic when she had been hit in the stomach. Never could she remember being hit so hard. If she hadn't been braced she wasn't sure if she'd be up, and even then she was trying to ignore the pain and the urge to vomit.
'She's sloppy,' she analyzed as she continued to press her opponent, 'but she's so fast and built like a brick it doesn't seem to matter!' She redirected a quick jab from Musubi, managing to give her enough space to pause and take quick stock of her opponent. Musubi had a spark of skill, but was too reliant on attacking. She didn't have much on defense, but given her freakish speed and defense she probably didn't have much of a reason to.
Across from her she caught Musubi's grin. In spite of herself, she chuckled, causing Musubi's grin to grow. "You're enjoying this, aren't you Musubi-san?"
Musubi nodded, retaking her fighting position, "Yeah, I'm having a lot of fun Akane-san!"
"So am I, Musubi-san. You're something else." Akane's smile vanished, a determined look on her face. "But even so, I'm not gonna lose."
"And I'm not going to lose either Akane-san," Musubi returned, a determined grin on her face.
"Well one of us is going to be a liar Musubi-san," Akane returned.
At that Musubi tensed suddenly, but Akane was ready as she flung herself backwards and out of the way of the jab she sent at her chin. Akane then threw herself to the left, narrowly dodging the buxom girl's follow up attack, and lashing out with a vicious punch to her adversary's right cheek. She was disappointed to find that Musubi barely reacted to it as she pressed her assault. She managed to get an arm up in time to block, but the impact jarred her whole body.
'Looks like Musubi's trying to make a liar out of me,' Akane thought as she continued to dodge attack after attack. 'She just might at this rate...'
While Akane had the edge in skill when it came to Musubi, her opponent was such a juggernaut that it was being rendered mute. Unseen, Ranma continued to watch this scuffle, the frown on her face continuing to grow with every second. Considering what she had seen earlier with her new friend, she was growing more and more concerned that she was going to have to step in soon and put an end to this.
As she finished this thought, Musubi had managed to graze Akane on the chin with a left cross. Akane stayed on her feet but turned her head with the impact to further mitigate the damage, surprise easily seen on her face and snapped her right leg up in a side kick aimed at the brunette woman's stomach, catching Musubi in her stomach and forcing her back only slightly. Akane tried to press her attack, but was once again forced to defend as Musubi dodged her follow up punch. At this point, it was becoming clear that it would be only a matter of time before Akane would be forced to submit.
Too bad no one told Musubi or Akane of this fact.
It was this thought that seemed to spur Ranma into action. In one moment Musubi's right was cocking back in a powerful haymaker. The sekirei's fist lashed out blindingly fast, aimed for Akane's face.
The next moment saw Ranma appear out of nowhere hooking Musubi's arm halfway to its destination. Musubi blinked as she felt and unfamiliar weight on her arm, the motion of her attack sending the redhead off her feet and causing Ashikabi and Sekirei to hurl forward at Akane. She had but a second to blink before the duo landed on her and collapsed into a pile on the dojo floor. After a moment to regain their bearings, the trio managed to unbury themselves from their impromptu dog pile.
"Huh... well that happened," Ranma groaned as she rose up. "I think ya'll can stop now don't ya think?"
"Y... yeah," Groaned Akane as she felt the adrenalin fading. She was sore; as both had spent the last several minutes doing their best to pound the other into the ground. However genial the fight had been, it had still burned energy, lots of it. Akane hadn't felt this tired in a good long while. She was sore in ways she hadn't even believed possible compliment of Musubi's juggernaut style.
And she hadn't felt so good in a long while.
"Man... that was fun," Akane sighed as she rolled over to see Musubi had risen beside her Ashikabi. "I had no idea you were so strong Musubi-chan."
Musubi smiled and nodded, "No problem Akane-san, I mean we are friends right? And friends do this kind of thing." Her tone was simple, mater-of-fact.
Akane giggled at that, "Some do, I'll grant you that." She turned to Ranma and frowned slightly. "You didn't have to step in though."
"Yeah I did," Ranma replied. "Trust me, it was about to get out of the friend zone really soon."
"I guess we did get a little too into it there," Akane acknowledged, shrugging slightly. Ranma smiled, and after another moment Akane smiled too then said, "Friends?"
"Sure," Ranma replied, "Why not?"
"I can't wait to see how good you are soon," Akane said as she rose up and glanced over her shoulder, "But just the same, I'm glad you're not a boy."
"You are?" the look on Ranma's face was suddenly very nervous.
"Of course," Akane replied, "It'd serve dad right for tryin' to do something so archaic without telling us in advance at least."
"Oh," Ranma sounded deflated, "That's true ain't it?"
Musubi blinked, "But Ranma is a b-!"
Akane blinked as Ranma slapped a hand over her sekirei's mouth. "Ahhahahaha, don't mind Musubi! She was about ta say somethin' silly!"
"Right..." Akane shrugged as she laid back onto the floor, missing Ranma whispering something to her friend. "Anyway... I'm gonna catch my breath here for a sec. I'll bet the bath's open if you wanna use it."
"Great!" Ranma chirped. "Let's go Musubi!"
At that, Ranma and Musubi rose, leaving Akane alone sprawled out on the dojo floor. Akane let out a sigh as she stared at the ceiling. "Man... tomorrow's going to be fun."
It was then that she hissed and held her stomach.
"Damn that girl is strong..."
Ranma felt extremely awkward as she opened the door to the furo and entered the actual bathing chamber, letting out a sigh as she sat down on a stool and began to clean herself. All she wanted was for the odd day to come to an end at this point, but of course, life doesn't work like that. It was going to be hard enough trying to explain Musubi's presence to the Tendos, and this engagement crap just made it all worse.
Still, at least that Akane girl was nice. Her odd hang-up about boys not withstanding anyway.
She sighed as she lathered up, wondering how the girl was going to handle the whole curse thing and imagining it not nearly as well as Musubi did. 'Speaking of Musubi', she thought as she began washing her hair. 'That crazy chick still ain't told me what this whole ashimikikabi crap means anyway. Just that she belongs ta me.' She let off a shudder as she picked up the water basin and poured it over her head.
"Jeeze," she sighed as she stood up and moved towards the bath. "All this crap is givin' me a headache."
Ranma turned to the voice coming from the changing room, "Musubi? What is it?"
Ranma blinked as something clicked in her head, "Musubi... what are you doing?"
"I'm changing of course," Musubi answered. A ruffling of clothes and Ranma's eyes bulged slightly as he could imagine her disrobing.
"W-why are you changin'?" Ranma asked in a dubious tone.
"So we can bathe silly," Musubi answered simply.
"Y-you can't come in here yet Musubi!" Ranma cried out. "I'm a guy!"
"But you're a girl right now right?" Musubi asked as Ranma heard additional ruffling of clothing. "I was taught that it's ok for me to bathe with girls."
"But I won't be a girl for long!" Ranma pointed out as his eyes darted around the room.
"That's ok," Musubi replied. "I was told it's ok for me to bathe with my ashikabi as well!"
"No it's not ok!" Ranma replied as she unconsciously backed away from the door. "And you still haven't told me what the hell an ashikabi is anyway!"
As the aqua transsexual martial artist tried to figure out a way to get Musubi to stop her actions, her foot encountered something rather unexpected as she edged towards the tub, the bar of soap that she had been using and absently dropped while lost in thought, and as Ranma suddenly lost her traction she naturally missed the door opening as she absently tried grabbing first thing handy that she could use to steady herself, to no avail. Musubi was taken completely by surprise as she entered the bathroom and saw her ashikabi flailing about and backpedaling towards the ground. And before she knew it she found herself rushing to her ashikabi's aid...
Only for Ranma to frantically grab her sekirei, and find themselves being pulled into the bath with Ranma breaking Musubi's fall with her body. For a moment they both went under and sputtered as neither one had thought to take a deep breath for the occasion, but then Musubi pushed up and broke the surface of the water once again, sputtering like a wet hen but managing to quickly recover...
And found herself only inches away from the face of a now-male Ranma, who was staring at her with rounded eyes, sputtering and coughing a moment later as he spat out a mouthful of very warm water.
"Gah-!" Ranma lurched up out of the bath and waved his hands disarmingly, "Musubi… I'm sorry! I didn't mean to do that! Honest!"
"Huh?" Musubi blinked, her eyes naturally traveling down the length of his powerful male body before she smiled up at him, "Are you all right Ranma-san?"
"Umm..." Ranma found himself feeling both confused and awkward as he responded, "I... I'm fine Musubi."
"Oh good," Musubi sighed in relief. "Well then sit down and I can wash your back for you."
"W-Wh-What?" Ranma blurted out, his eyes becoming cross and his face flushed with embarrasment, "No, no, no, no, no!" He cried as he crossed his arms in an X-formation for emphasis. "That's not happening at all tonight! What's gonna happen is you get out and let me finish first!"
"But why?" Musubi asked.
"Because!" Ranma protested, "It ain't proper for-!"
"It's perfectly proper for us to see each other naked, Ranma-san," Musubi assured him in a calm tone, "After all, you are my ashikabi."
"Again, I don't know what that means," Ranma sighed. "Nor do I care. All I know is that you gotta get outta here before someone shows up and gets the wrong idea!"
It's like they want this shit to happen, I swear...
"Musubi-chan?" a familiar voice asked, "Hope you and Ranma-chan don't mind but..."
Ranma's head whipped so fast that he nearly fell over once again, only spared that awkwardness by the wall at his back, which allowed him to slide into the water without totally losing all dignity, and just in time to catch sight of a stunned Akane with nothing but a washcloth and soap in her hands. "Ah..." came Akane's stunned reply to the scene before her.
"Y...Yo..." Ranma replied in a soft tone
"Hi Akane-san!" Musubi chirped. "Maybe you can help me convince Ranma it's fine for me to wash his back!"
"Please stop talking Musubi," Ranma muttered under his breath, sinking down to his neck into the water and looking quite embarrassed.
Akane was silent for a moment before bowing slightly and muttering, "Excuse me." At that she turned and left them staring open-eyed in her direction, a regard that both boy and sekirei maintained until long after the youngest Tendo had vanished down the hallway.
After a moment Ranma spoke up again, saying, "I'm getting dressed."
Musubi turned and blinked at her ashikabi, "Ranma-san?"
"Just... just enjoy your bath Musubi," Ranma said softly as he headed for the changing room. "I... I just got this feeling I should get dressed now."
The soft muddled screams that he could now just hear outside the door only hastened his resolve.
It was starting out to be one of those days in the Tendo household...
It was all Ranma could do to keep from sighing as he looked across the table to the Tendo clan before him. He was sandwiched between Genma on his left and Musubi on his right. It was some minutes after his bath and after he and his father gave their explanation for their unique situation, complete with graphic illustration, that the three Tendo daughters sat together with equally stunned looks. Well... Nabiki looked stunned at least. Kasumi looked in equal parts confused and awed. At least, Ranma thought she did. And Akane...
Ranma turned his head towards the youngest Tendo daughter, who gave him a heated glare right back.
Oh yes, she was taking it very well. Well, at least he had managed to calm down enough to not kill him. That was nice at least.
"How I feel for you both," Soun began in a solemn tone while he openly wept, "To bear this burden as you two have… truly the way of the martial artist is filled with strife!"
Genma nodded in return, "Indeed my old friend. Truer words have never been spoken. Yet and still..." He paused as a wide grin began to break out on his face, "This is actually great news! It means that now my son can marry one of your three daughters, just as we planned, Tendo-kun!"
"Oh geez..." Nabiki groaned, knowing a significant headache was growing worse in all of these exchanges.
"But father," Kasumi said, "He's too young for me."
"You've got to be kidding!" Akane protested, "He turns into a girl! And he's a pervert besides!"
"Excuse me?" Ranma replied, his eyes narrowing as he turned back to Akane. "What th' hell did you just call me?"
"You heard what I said, you sick little pervert!" Akane spat.
"Just how, exactly, am I a pervert?" Ranma spat back.
"You saw me naked!" Akane naturally replied. "And you were in there with Musubi-san!"
"First of all, I was trying to get Musubi out of the bath. And second of all, you walked in on me!" Ranma replied back. "So how the hell is it my fault you saw us naked?!"
"I…" Akane hesitated for only a fraction of a second, "It doesn't matter! You're still a pervert! You were taking a bath with Musubi-san and trying to take advantage of her!"
"Umm... Ranma-san?" Musubi tried to cut in.
"Take advantage...?!" Ranma squawked at Akane. "Did you not hear the part where I said I was trying to get her out of the bathroom?!"
"As if I'd believe a pervert like you!" Akane replied. "All I know is there's no way I'd let some freak like you stay in this house!"
"FREAK?!" Ranma shouted. "Who're you callin' a freak you uncute tomboy?!"
"Ummm... Ranma-san..." Musubi tried again, pulling on her ashikabi's shirt for emphasis.
"Don't call me a tomboy you freak!" Akane replied hotly.
"I just call it like I see it you railroad spike tomboy!" Ranma was rising up in his seat, "So why am I a freak?! Because I turn into a girl?! That's not my fault!"
"Please," Soun said as he waved his hands in a warding gesture, "There is no reason to fight, you two."
Both Akane and Ranma rounded on him, their eyes ablaze "YOU STAY OUTTA THIS!"
Soun let out a small eep and slinked back into his seat.
"No way am I marrying you, you gender bending freak show!" Akane spat insistently.
"Well what a coincidence, ya gorilla tomboy," Ranma spat back. "I was just thinkin' the same thing! We finally agree on somethin'!"
"Ranma-san!" Musubi cried out with an emphatic tug.
Ranma turned to his sekirei, his eyes ablaze. "WHAT, MUSUBI, WHAT?!"
"What's a pervert?"
Ranma's eyes crossed at the question, "Huh?"
Musubi looked at her ashikabi curiously, "I said 'what's a pervert?'"
Ranma sputtered, his anger deflating at the simplicity of her question. "Ah... hah… wha?"
Musubi tilted her head as her ashikabi slumped back into his seat, "You don't know?"
"No, I...I..." Ranma sighed, raking a hand through his hair, "I'll tell you later." Looking across the table, he saw Akane had done the same as him. Apparently, that was enough to stop even her dead in her tracks. "Man, my head hurts."
"Do you need some aspirin, Ranma-san?" Musubi asked.
"Just... just gimmie a minute Musubi," Ranma replied. "I... I need a minute to process this."
"Well!" Came Soun's voice suddenly as Ranma's head slumped onto the table. "I'm glad you two got that little tiff out of your system! Now, Ranma my boy…you have a choice of one of my three girls to be your fiancée. There's my nineteen year old Kasumi, my seventeen year old Nabiki, and my sixteen year old Akane. Choose one and you will unite our families and make the Anything Goes school the stronger for our union!"
"Yes boy," Genma grunted, elbowing his son in the back. "Look up and choose your future!"
"Head hurts, dun wanna." Ranma muttered.
"Then if I may," Nabiki cut in. "You want Akane."
"Bua?!" Akane replied smartly.
"Oh yes," Kasumi agreed quickly. "She'll get over the whole bathroom incident quickly. You two will make a nice couple."
"Oh my sweet baby girl," Soun beamed proudly, "You make your father so happy!"
"Well, glad that's settled," Genma nodded in satisfaction.
"Someone shoot me please," Ranma groaned as Musubi looked on in confusion.
"Now just a minute!" Akane protested, "Don't I have any say in who I'm going to marry? And how could you two foist me on that freak?!"
"Oh come on Akane-chan," Nabiki sighed dramatically. "It could help with that one issue you got at school and besides... he is half-girl and you hate boys so..."
"So nothing!" Akane shouted back. "I ain't marryin' that pervert and that's that!"
"Ranma-san," Musubi began as she looked down on her ashikabi's miserable form. "What's a fiancée?"
"A fiancée is the girl who's supposed to be my wife someday." Ranma muttered.
"Really?" Musubi asked.
"A-yup," Ranma answered. "Now lemmie see if I can wake up from this nightmare ok?"
"But Ranma-san," Musubi continued. "Does that mean I'm your fiancée too?"
The Tendos and Genma looked at the Sekirei as if she had grown a third head. Ranma rose his head from the table and gave Musubi a blank look, "I'm sorry, what?"
"Well," Musubi began as a warm smile grew on her face. "You winged me and made me yours. I am bonded to you now and forever Ranma-san as your sekirei, and you to me as my ashikabi. So doesn't that mean I'm your fiancée too?"
"Wait," Ranma managed to get out through a dry mouth. "Wait. Are you tellin' me that me 'winging' you is like some kind of engagement cerimony?"
"Well, yeah," she nodded in agreement. "I guess it is in a way isn't it?"
"SSSSSSSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA AAAAAAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO TOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMEEEEEEEEEE EEEE-KUUUUUUUUUUUUUUNNNNNNNNNNNNN NNNNN!"
Genma blanched as Ranma and Musubi shrunk slightly back to the sight before them. During the discussion, Soun had managed to make a rather large astral projection of his head in and old uky-o style paining... somehow. And he was using it to greatly scare the ever-loving piss out of his old friend. "C-c-calm down Tendo-kun!" Genma cried out.
"CALM DOWN?!" Soun replied. "YOU BETRAYED OUR SACRED OATH SAOTOME-KUN! HOW COULD YOU ENGAGE YOUR SON TO SOMEONE WHO ISN'T ONE OF MY PRECIOUS LITTLE GIRLS?!"
"Hey this is news to me too, Tendo-kun!" Genma retorted.
"Ah man," Ranma groaned. "This day just keeps getting better and better."
"Ranma-san?" Ranma turned to find the eldest Tendo daughter holding a phone and giving him a puzzled expression. "There's a phone call for you."
Ranma blinked, "For me?" At her nod he stood, ignoring the goings on of their fathers and giving Kasumi his own puzzled expression. "Who the heck even knows me and pop are here?"
Kasumi gave Ranma a slight shrug as she showed the cursed martial artist toward the kitchen area and handed him the phone. Ranma gave Kasumi a slight nod of gratitude and put the receiver towards his ear. "Hello?"
"Greetings and salutations my friend," came an unfamiliar voice. Ranma frowned at the facetious sounding tone, feeling as though the sound was surrounding him.
"Who is this?" Ranma asked.
"You're quite a hard man to track down Saotome Ranma-kun," the voice continued. "If we weren't tracking our dear Musubi-chan, we might have never gotten a hold of you."
Ranma blinked, pulling the phone away to look at it weirdly before placing it back on his ear, "Who the hell are you? How the hell do you even know about Musubi?"
"Honestly my dear boy," The voice sighed out dramatically. "This would have been so much easier if either you or your father had a cell phone. I know you two just got back from China, but they sell those things over there too."
"Who the hell is this?!" Ranma nearly shouted, causing the peanut gallery behind him to pause and look at him curiously.
"I'd be more than happy to explain who I am Ranma-kun," the voice replied with hidden excitement. "All you need to do is turn on the Tendo's television and all will be made clear. You may go ahead and hang up now."
Ranma simply frowned as he put the phone back on its cradle. "Tendo-san," he called out. "Can you turn on your TV, please?"
Soun blinked at the boy's request, "Why?"
"To answer some questions," Ranma replied simply.
"All right," Soun replied, not quite understanding but turned to give a soft glare to Genma as a reminder that they weren't done with their previous discussion. His training partner simply let out a nervous chuckle as the television turned on. There was static for a moment, but it quickly faded and the image of a man came into clear view.
A man that caused Nabiki to choke slightly as he came into view. Akane and Soun simply gasped while Musubi simply smiled brightly at the man. He sat forward, folding his arms casually across one knee; and was dressed in an all white long coat with pointed tips at the collar. Black square rimmed glasses sat on the bridge of his nose, and white gloves adorned his hands.
Ranma gave the man a flat look. He couldn't look more like a super villain if he tried.
"It is an honor to meet you, young Saotome Ranma-kun," The man said in a pleasant tone. "And allow me to be the first to offer you congratulations. You were magnificently chosen to be the partner of a Sekirei!"
"Hello, professor!" Musubi chirped.
"And hello to you Number Eighty-Eight, Musubi-chan!" The man replied warmly. "I see you were able to find the Ashikabi meant for you!"
"Musubi," Ranma cut in. "Y'know this doofus?"
"Doofus?" The man repeated, aghast.
"You idiot!" Nabiki snapped. "Don't you know who this man is?!"
"No," Ranma shrugged as he turned to the middle Tendo daughter. "Otherwise I wouldn't ask. Should I?"
"You damn well should!" She spat back. "That's Hiroto Minaka, the CEO and owner of MBI!"
Ranma blinked, having heard of the company on and off during his travels. "This screwball?! This guy runs MBI?!"
"My, my, Saotome Ranma-kun..." Minaka huffed in a hurt tone. "You're quite the rude Ashikabi aren't you?"
"It's been a long day," Ranma growled. "And you ain't making it any shorter."
"Fair enough," Minaka sighed dramatically. "I suppose we should get to the point of all this." He rose from his hunch, crossing his legs and smirking at Ranma. "Saotome Ranma-kun! You have been blessed with one of the one-hundred and eight sekirei being slowly released into Tokyo to find their destined Ashikabi and participate in the creation of new legends!"
"New... legends?" Akane asked, blinking at the screen.
"Indeeed!" Minaka crooned. "As the ashikabi of dear number eighty-eight, Musubi, you have the honor and right to participate in the Sekirei Plan! The rules are simple my young friend. There are a hundred and eight freed Sekirei, and when the time comes they will fight!" He stood up, stretching his arms out wide, "And fight! And fight! All until the last Sekirei and Ashikabi is left standing to receive their prize!"
Genma blinked, turning towards the screen with a hungry gaze. "Prize?"
"And the Ashikabi of the final Sekirei standing," Minaka continued, fully into his speech. "The pair is blessed with the chance to ascend to the heavens and hold the fate of the world in their hands!"
Silence reined as Minaka finished his impassioned speech. The CEO of the most powerful corporation in the free world re-took his seat and steepled his hands across his chest. "Oh, and one more thing."
Ranma blinked, "Yeah what?"
"Now that you know about this, you now have a responsibility to keep it secret. We are still in the opening stages, and it will be very, very bad if word got out about this at this time. Should you by any chance leak this information, then I am unhappy to say that you will feel the full force of MBI's retaliation." His smile faded from his face, "And yes, I'm afraid that extend to you Tendos as well. All of you are in this together from here on."
Nabiki opened her mouth to speak.
"And no, you do not want to know. Just know that there would be no way out for you Tendo Nabiki." Minaka added.
Nabiki closed her mouth with an audible clap.
Minaka's smirk returned to his face, "But until such time, REJOICE, for your empty life has been given new meaning in this new age of gods! Now then, any questions?"
Genma raised his hand, "What's this about prizes?"
Minaka chuckled, "The prize would be for your son and his Sekirei Genma-san. However," he paused as he pushed his glasses over the bridge of his nose. "It's beyond... ANYTHING... you could hope to imagine."
Genma blinked, and then let off a goofy grin. His mind already salivating at the guaranteed victory.
"Now just a moment sir," Soun cut in, giving the CEO a hard look. "There's something I need clarification on for the sake of family honor and-"
"Professor!" Musubi cut in suddenly. "Musubi has a question!"
"Hmm?" Minaka blinked. "Yes, what is it Eighty-Eight?"
"Professor, an Ashikabi is like a fiancée, right; right!?"
"What?!" Minaka replied aghast. "Absolutely not. An Ashikabi is not like a fiancée at all!"
Soun gave a giddy grin at Minaka's words while Akane looked sullen and Musubi looked deflated. "It's not?" Musubi asked.
"Good heavens no!" Minaka replied. "An Ashikabi is no mere fiancée at all! When a Sekirei meets and is winged by their destined Ashikabi, they are making a vow of marriage!"
Soun paled at the MBI CEO's words. Akane's sullen look faded as Musubi perked up. "Really?!" she cried out.
"What?!" Ranma cried out.
"That's right Saotome Ranma-kun!" Minaka replied, pointing at the young martial artist. "As Musubi's husband I insist that you make sure to see to her well being as your top priority, understand?"
"W-w-what?!" Ranma cried out. "My wife?! What?!"
"Now then!" Minaka began as he stood, his coat flapping in the wind dramatically. "Before I go; one last thing. My dear number Eighty-eight!"
"You left your MBI card here when you were released," He sighed. "My dear I know you were excited to find your husband, but do realize these things are important."
Musubi bopped herself on the head and stuck her tongue out slightly, "Sorry, professor."
"Don't worry yourself about it my dear," he said in a reassuring tone. "I sent it to your new address and it should be there tomorrow. And so - farewell!" And at those words, the television turned its self off.
"SSSSSSSSSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAOOOOOOO OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOTOOOOOOOOOOOO OOOOOOOOOOOOOMEEEEEEEEEEEEE-KUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUNNNNN NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN NNNNNNNNNNNNN!"
Genma paled as he received the full brunt of Soun's demon head attack, "HOW DARE YOU ENCOURAGE YOUR SON TO MARRY SOME HARLOT THAT ISN'T ONE OF MY PURE SWEET DAUGHTERS!"
"Why are you getting mad at me Tendo-kun?!" Genma asked as he paled under the assault. "I had no control over this!"
"Ranma-san!" Musubi chirped as she clasped onto her Ashikabi's arm. "Did you hear? Did you hear? I'm your wife!"
"I... I heard," Ranma muttered. "What... what the hell just happened?"
"I'd say our engagement's off," Akane replied. "But for some reason I doubt it'd be that easy."
"Whatever," Ranma groaned as he and Musubi took a seat. "I'm just ready for this day to end."
Minaka set aside his phone as he leaned back, basking in the glow of another piece of the epic plan he had unveiled fall into place. With that he turned on his television to watch as the cameras he had on the Tendo-ke displayed the rampant chaos his words had riled up. "Humhumhum" he chuckled. "Saotome Ranma-kun, I eagerly await to see what path you take to accent to the heavens! It promises to make good television!"
End Chapter 1
So once again, for those of you expecting a Veiled Moon update well… it's another Sekirei cross so it meets the standards half way at least right? Right?! No? Oh fine then…
Anyway, this one's just a fun little ditty I'm doing sporadically. It won't be nearly as serious or as encompassing as Veiled Moon but some elements of it may pop up in here. Even some things that I wanted to include in VM but just couldn't. You might not see the next chapter of this soon as my co-author's PC is having some… issues so VM chapter seven is delayed at the moment.
And there's your Veiled Moon update.
In any case, let me know what your thoughts are on the first hopefully decent Ranma/Sekirei cross in the reviews section and thanks for reading.