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Wings of Paradise

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This story is No. 1 in the series "Wings of Paradise". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: Time flows and things change. But how will one mistake alter the course of history? This is the first in my 'Wings of Paradise' series. Primarily a Ranma/Sailor Moon cross but with elements from my personal superhero world setting.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Anime > Ranma 1/2
Anime > Oh My Goddess!
Anime > Sailor Moon
TheKnightofFaerieFR21427,430232,88910 Dec 1221 Apr 13No

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The First Installment

Author Notes: This story deviates from canon by a large degree. In fact, it's in a sense a continuation from another story of mine called That Old Time Magic. As such, there will be OC interactions. The timeline will be different. Relationships with various persona will not be the same as in Canon. Thanks are given to Tirsis from Fanfiction dot Net for permission to use his world setting from Ranma ½ A Wing And A Prayer. For point of reference, I am going with the assumption that Kino Makoto's reincarnation in each time cycle is not 100% identical each time. Thus in the time cycle this story deals with, she is a natural red head.




Disclaimer: Ranma ½, Sailor Moon, and Ah! My Goddess do not belong to me. Other elements such as Jason Blair, Sam Bricklbuster, and their friends/allies do. I make no money off this story, it is written simply for amusement.




Ranma 1/2: Wings of Paradise
by
Faerie Knight

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Chapter 1
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There are fates far worse then death, as Kino Makoto could attest. She hadn't always known this. Once she had been a normal girl. Well, at least as normal as a magically powered demon hunter could be. Then everything changed. A woman named Setsuna had approached her, asking Makoto to take over as guardian of time. And to her eternal regret Makoto had accepted. A choice that once made. She discovered could never be altered.

At first the greatest challenge was boredom. This she'd alleviated by toying with a chaos nexus. Finding new and interesting ways to screw with a gender changing martial artist had been a great diversion. Granted, a chaos nexus is hard to track. But she'd quickly learned ways around that blind spot. And it provided endless entertainment.

That had been her first time through the cycle. Before she'd realized the true horror of her position. Back then, she'd sparingly viewed the future. Makoto hadn't wanted to know too much about what was coming. Just the vital details, such as when she'd have to lend aid to the senshi. Back then, she hadn't realized that time was not linear, but cyclic.

The stress of her job had driven the guardian of time insane a few times in that first cycle. But it hadn't broken her spirit. It was only when she witnessed the end of everything that happened. Watching all of creation die had been hard. And Makoto had thought she too would pass away then. By that point she welcomed death. Her life had been long. Too long in fact.

Then the Lady Nox had approached her in the mists of time. It was during that visit that she'd learned the true extent of her job. That it wasn't one she could give up or pass on to someone else. The fact that Setsuna had passed on the job of Guardian of Time had been unusual. She'd been allowed to do so thanks to a quirk of fate. After living through the cycle of the universe hundreds of times, Meioh Setsuna had finally been forgiven for her role in destiny. And with that forgiveness, a curse which had bound Setsuna to her job had been broken.

But now it was Makoto who was trapped here in the endless loop. And for the eight hundredth time she was heading to her death. She could remember each and every time it had happened before. She knew how things would play out, and knew she could not change it. The beginning was today. The Queen would receive word of a mysterious hallway on Pluto. They would travel with Queen Serenity to investigate. This would start a chain of events leading to the destruction of the kingdom, and her own death. It was inevitable. While minor events changed each time through it, the major things didn't change.

Kami how Makoto wished something would change. She wanted out of this cycle of death, rebirth, and endless duty. Sixteen years of blissful ignorance wasn't enough. What she truly craved was the oblivion of death without rebirth. Let someone else watch the gates. I just want it to end, she thought. When the message arrived calling her to aid in an investigation, she didn't even bother to read it. Makoto already knew what it said.

When the senshi gathered Queen Serenity gazed at the first of them sadly. She didn't know why Sailor Jupiter was so depressed lately. Or why the other woman's eyes spoke of madness. Jupiter was always so reserved. Always holding back and reluctant to interact with others. Serenity knew something was troubling her friend though. Especially today. The sadness was greater then ever.

"I have received word of an unusual structure on Pluto. The initial team sent to investigate reported several dangerous magics. I want you all to be careful this time. Let's go." The queen told them.

Some time later they were approaching an alabaster structure. The doors to the structure were made of highly polished oak. The walls were made with a substance which even the mercury computer couldn't identify. There was no lock, and the doors swung open without noise. Everyone was quiet as they walked down the hallway. So it was a little surprising when Serenity heard Makoto muttering.

"Here I go again, I hope the kid doesn't pull on my skirt this time."

"What child? And when have you been here, Jupiter?" Serenity asked.

Without thinking the senshi of jupiter and guardian of time answered. "The child is a girl I have seen grow up many times already. And it is more when haven't I been here. The cycle always repeats."

This time it was Mercury who questioned her reclusive ally. "What cycle is this? And do you know what this hall is?"

"Of course I do, I built this hall after all. The hall is known as the 'hall of seasons'. Called such because of four paintings I hang here when they are finished each time through the cycle. As for the cycle, I am talking about the cycle of time."

It was only then that it struck the senshi of Jupiter. Things were happening different this time around. That fact gave her hope. Maybe she wouldn't have to repeat everything again. Maybe she could finally end it all.

"You speak like your the barbarian of time," Venus said.

"That's 'guardian of time'," Jupiter absently corrected. "While I'm breaking from the script, a warning. I'd stand to the left Rei, otherwise you'll get trampled, again."

Mars glanced back at Jupiter as she opened the gates. Her expression said she didn't believe the warning. A moment later a hyperactive child with green hair had knocked the off balance Rei over while running past. Five pairs of eyes stared at Jupiter in wonder. All of them trying to figure out how Makoto had known what would happen.

Twelve years had passed since 'rescuing' Setsuna from the mists of time. Tonight was the big night. The ball in honor of Princess Serena was the main attraction, although it wasn't what Makoto was looking forward to. She was anticipating the slaughter that would occur in an hour or two. The exact timing was always different of course. But tonight hopefully she would be allowed to die for good.

Just a few months previous Setsuna had been made the senshi of Pluto. That had surprised time's guardian. Usually Setsuna wasn't a true senshi, but merely linked with the time gate with an honorary uniform and title. This cycle had been full of surprises in fact. Something which was a pleasant change. This fact alone had made the burden a little easier to bear. And the knowledge that she would be free from it for a little while was relaxing too.

Until the attack, she decided to relax. The ball wasn't too bad. Even if Makoto had been through it too many times in the past. Then the screaming started. Royal guardsmen tried fighting off the invasion, but again were overwhelmed by superior numbers. The outers were off fighting the fleets, again. Pluto was standing next to the Queen, again. Soon Pluto would be sent to the gates, and she would die once more. Expected, routine even.

"Jupiter, go guard the time gate. You mustn't let it fall into evil hands." Serenity proclaimed. "We'll hold the demons off until the outers get here."

As Sailor Jupiter found herself transported to the time gates she blinked in shock. She was once again holding a key shaped staff with a gem in the top. A staff she hadn't expected to hold again until after her rebirth. What just happened? She focused the gate on the battle which had just began. A battle which Jupiter was suppose to be fighting in, not Pluto.

The battle was long and bloody, of course. The guardian of time watched as one by one the senshi fell. She watched as Prince Endymion died. Watched as Princess Serena impaled herself on Venus's sword. She watched as the queen desperately sealed away Beryl's forces and sent the senshi forward in time. And through it all she wondered what had gone wrong. She was suppose to have died in that battle. Then something hit her.

"This will be interesting, I have no idea what is going to happen between now and Jame's awakening. So, who's this generation's chaos nexus? I'm going to need something to keep boredom at bay."

XxXxX

There are places and times of great importance. There are moments which define the direction history will take. Such moments lead to world shaking events. What starts as a pebble quickly becomes a landslide. The assassination of an Austrian duke was one such moment. A woman in America refusing to move from her seat on a bus was another. Out of all the pivotal moments in time, only one of those watching for such events noticed a balding man filling a pit with starving cats.

"Is this man seriously trying to raise a demon, or is he just an idiot?"

The speaker stood six feet tall. His skin was almost bronze in color, and his hair was jet black. He wore a robe made from red silk with blue trimming. His name was Enki, and some would have called him a god. He preferred the term 'pan-dimensional meddler'. Being a god was too much trouble, and would prevent him from his favorite pastime. Currently he was staring at a glass orb, and watching as events played out in this dimension.

Enki had first started observing this man two days ago. That was when Enki had found one of his scrolls to be missing. That particular scroll had been confiscated after it's scribe had summoned the demon Katar. While it amused Enki at the time, having demonic cats running around the world was not a good thing. And now here was an idiot offering his son as a sacrifice. How the scroll had gone from Enki's personal library to the fat man's travel pack, he had no idea. It was something he'd have to look into. But first he had to somehow salvage the situation. He did not need another Atlantis due to reckless magic.

"Well, let's see what I can do. Hmm, too late to stop the ritual. How about altering the results? Yes, that should work. Still, I feel sorry for the boy."

Enki nodded at this. He waved his hand over the orb, causing a subtle shift in the patterns surrounding the cat filled pit. The changes were minor enough that the one who'd dug the pit probably wouldn't notice them. Another chant, and Enki ensured that area would be free of wind for a week. His brother would naturally be upset about this. But it was better then the alternative. Now all that was left was watching what happens next.

Not for the first time he wished that destroying the scroll was an option. He'd tried it of course, a number of times. But as Enki had come to accept, once a magic was created it could not be uncreated. Destroy the scroll, and someone else would accidentally pen it once more. The best he could do was keep the knowledge from Man. But that it seemed was going to be problematic too.

"This boy seems important. I wonder why? Maybe I should have someone keep an eye on him. Maybe that nice Kino girl, she could use a distraction. While at it, maybe she can look into how this oaf got the scroll to begin with."

Genma stared down at the pit in annoyance. When he'd found the training scroll it had seemed like an easy technique. Dig a pit, fill it with twenty to thirty starving cats, and throw in a child that is wrapped in fish. That was it. There was no way his son could fail to learn the neko-ken akuma . There was more on the scroll, but the rest was as unimportant as it was hard to understand. The need for those circles and symbols wasn't clear. They were probably useless decoration anyway. Still, he had formed the various sigils like the training scroll said to. He didn't have any chalk, so instead he used salt. After all, what difference would it make?

For almost a week he had been trying to teach Ranma this unstoppable technique. Nothing was working however. Not to mention the number of stray cats in the area was dropping fast. Each day Genma was having to replace at least half of the cats in the pit. Not only was the boy refusing to learn this technique, but his thrashing kept killing the felines. This time would be different though, he was sure of it. This time he had used thick wires to bind the boy. Either Ranma would learn the technique this time, or he would stay down there.

While waiting Genma leaned against a tree. He didn't know how long it would take. Or how to tell when Ranma finally figured out this technique. So the best thing to do was take a nap. Genma's eyes were just starting to close when he heard it. From within the pit had come a yowl that was louder then the rest. Then the distinctive sound of metal twine snapping in twain. The man stood and looked into the pit just in time to see his son bounding out.

The boy landed next to Genma. He was crouched on all four limbs, with his hands curled as if paws. This surprised his father. He'd not known quite what to expect. This wasn't it however. The angered hissing and arched back also came as a surprise. As a hand lashed out, Genma felt something cut deep into his right leg. Then the boy ran off, still on all four limbs.

XxXxX

A red haired woman wearing a yellow ball gown sat beneath the gnarled oak tree. Behind her and to the left was a small cabin. Her eyes slowly opened as a sound came from the bushes. The sight which greeted the woman was shocking, to say the least. Out of the bush had crawled a young boy with raven hair. The woman marveled at how easily the boy moved on hands and feet.

Is this the boy I was told about? She thought. I wonder who he is. The poor boy, he's cut to ribbons. The woman had gone by many names. Her original one had been long forgotten however. A name she favored was Kino Makoto. She couldn't remember if it was her name, or just an alias. It was one she liked though. There were others she favored as well, but this name was one that was used the most.

The pain causer was long gone. The pit was left behind as well. Now that the raw terror was gone, he could find some food. Ahead was the scent of Female. Motherly, ancient. Curious, he stalked through the bushes. Maybe the old one had food. He stopped in confusion, sniffing the air again. This was the Old One, but wasn't. No food could be smelled, but something equally good was in sight. A warm lap, the next best thing from food. Warm lap meant petting. And that was something to be desired.

Makoto blinked as the boy leaped across the clearing and into her lap. She'd not have thought such an act possible. When he circled and kneaded her legs an eyebrow rose. Then the boy curled into a ball while purring. Her hand started to stroke the boy's head. As Makoto did this she examined his injuries. He wore a shredded gi and boxers. She could see a multitude of lacerations across his arms and back. Just seeing the state this boy was in brought tears to her eyes. This too surprised her. Makoto had thought she'd cried her last tear a long time ago.

The warm lap was everything promised and more. Warm lap was doing more then just petting. Warm lap was washing him too. It stung a little, but warm lap didn't seem dangerous. Warm lap was also singing. And this he found very pleasing. This was something he could enjoy. Food could wait he decided. Maybe it was time for a nap. Nothing bad had happened after all.

When he finally fell asleep Makoto gently picked the boy up. Her cabin wasn't quite big enough for a family. But it would do for now. She'd needed a vacation. There was nothing that needed her attention going on for the next sixteen years. So a few years living in a cabin had seemed a good idea. Her heart ached still for lost friends. And her soul was in turmoil from the horrible things she'd done. And all in the name of the Forest Kingdom. Yes, the forest kingdom would be a golden age. But now she could understand why Pluto gave her the job each time through the cycle.

Learning about events in school just doesn't convey the true horror of them. I feel so tired these days. After tucking the boy into bed she looked at her wrists. The scars had been old before the universe's rebirth. Reminders of all the times she had tried to give up on life. Those scars were proof the easy way out was denied her. It was for this reason the cabin existed. Makoto needed time living a normal life. She needed it so badly it hurt. But before she could rejoin society, she first needed time to heal.

On the table Makoto found a letter. It hadn't been there before, which meant a Power likely had contacted her. Just great, I can't even get a month of peace can I? Who is it, and what do they want? The letter was addressed simply to 'the one who watches' As she read it, tears once again began to fall.

To the one who watches,

For too long you have stood as Guardian. It was not your task, but you accepted it. With your sacrifice the suffering of an innocent child ended. For that, I thank you. Sunlight has long been dear to my heart. To see her punished for all eternity because of one mistake was a shame. But you deserve happiness as well. I know your wish, but it is not to be.

Chronos himself demands a guardian. For a time Faerie stood watch. But in her arrogance the Queen broke one of the laws of magic. And in doing so, split the Realm. And so the gates chose a new guardian. In a fit of rage the Queen condemned the young guardian to eternal service. You who have taken the task also accepted the curse. And for this I am sorry.

I can however offer hope. The child you took in is your salvation. Watch over him, guide him, and your fate may yet be reversed. His father possesses a scroll of great importance and knows it not. Prevent the scroll from being used again. Do this, and you may yet have the freedom you deserve. No one should have to suffer like you have.

Signed,

Enki

P.S.: Your vacation is eight years too late, Nodoka.

The name at the end seemed familiar. Was it one she'd used in the past, or someone she knew? Hard to say really. But being told her vacation was being taken too late brought a smile. After all, what was the point of being 'guardian of time' if one couldn't rectify such a mistake? Once the boy was in good hands, she would go back and start that vacation. Maybe she'd use that name. Kino Nodoka sounded good. And it would allow access to the various accounts set up under the family name 'Kino'.

Fortunately one also had to know the account numbers, and answer several security questions to access said money. That had been a safety measure began during the first cycle. Staying at the gates all the time could drive one insane. Makoto knew that intimately. And to live in the mortal world, one needed money. Having relatives discover the accounts and emptying them was troublesome.

Initially she had tried linking the accounts to a specific name. But even that had failed on it's own. Given enough generations, it was inevitable that someone would share her name. A child or grand child named after her. A parent who just liked the name Makoto. And so the accounts each time got set up in the Kino name, but with additional precautions. Another name might have been better, but Kino was one she could remember for some reason.

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Chapter 2
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Time passed as it is wont to do. For three weeks Makoto watched over the child. Most of the time she cared for her youthful guest it was in the form of a loved pet. That however was understandable. After all, the boy was acting very much like a kitten for most of the stay. It had only been within the last three days the boy had snapped out of whatever had happened after all.

The Boy was startled by rustling in the bushes. When a man in a dirty gi emerged, the Boy didn't recognize him. Something about the man was familiar, but the Boy didn't like him. Nor really trust him for that matter. The Boy's name was Ranma. A fact which had only come to him that day. Other then that, the past was lost to him. His entire world had began in the arms of the Nice Lady three days ago. The only other fact in his life known was that Ranma could fight. Each day he'd practiced kata for a martial arts style. How he knew them was a mystery to Ranma however.

The unknown man entered the cabin, and spoke to Nice Lady. A bit later he came out with a hand shaped mark on his cheek. "Come along, boy. We're leaving."

"Don't wanna. Wanna stay with nice lady," Ranma said to the man. The boy ran inside and looked for her everywhere. However the nice lady was gone.

XxXxX

Ranma looked up from the papers he was reading. For three years now he'd been growing more and more suspicious of his father. The fact that Genma was his father for a while had even been in doubt to the youth. The old man's ideas of training were dangerous. Very dangerous in fact, and usually rather stupid. They worked though, which was the only reason Ranma would usually agree to them. But this, this was too far.

One of the papers was a contract of some sort. It said that if one Saetome Ranma was not a 'man among men' after the training journey then both he and Genma would commit seppuku. Ranma wasn't quite sure what that was, but it probably wasn't good. Then there was a notebook called 'retirement plan'. In it Ranma found something most unusual. Lists of families, dowry offers, and how much each family was worth. Some entries, such as for Ranma's friend Ukyo had an additional notation. One that indicated everything of value was already taken.

What does he know of honor? Ranma thought in disgust while still reading the list. Hey, I remember that temple! Pops left me there for a week. Then dragged me away in the middle of the night. So that's where those technique scrolls came from. And here, a 'dowry' of one bowl of rice, two pickles, and a fish? Not sure what a dowry is, but these other ones list yen, scrolls or building usually. What's pops up to? Looks like he's been selling me over and over.

XxXxX

Genma was at a loss. For three years now he'd been unable to work on his retirement plans. Every time he would try, the boy would interfere. He had no idea what had happened. Just that one day three years ago his son had asked what a dowry was. Naturally, Genma had lied. But somehow the boy had still learned the truth. Now every time he tried to sell Ranma, the boy kept telling the others of all the other times such had happened.

Somehow, the boy even knew that several families had been robbed blind after the dowry was accepted. It was getting most frustrating. Not only that, but it was dangerous too. Entering towns was flat out. Genma was now a wanted man. Bars refused to accept tabs under his, or Ranma's name anymore. And local police kept watch for him too. Which was why Genma had dragged the bot to the coast.

"And why again should I swim to china?" Ranma asked.

"For training," Genma said.

"And how's it training anything except how to drown?"

"It's strength and endurance training, now come on Boy."

"Strength and endurance, ya right. This ain't cause yer afraid ta enter Itoshima, is it?"

"Of course not, boy. It's training."

While Ranma didn't believe him, the 12 year old boy did admit it would be good training. Assuming of course that they didn't drown. Or somehow miss any and all land. There were so many things that could go wrong. Still, the potential gains were also attractive. Not to mention he'd heard his father muttering about legendary training grounds in china. That more then anything interested Ranma. With a shrug he grabbed a sturdy log and swam after his father. The log he figured would provide something to rest on when he got tired.

XxXxX

Through the mists two figures were walking. The older of the two wore a dingy white training gi and a white handkerchief on his head. The younger one wore a well washed white training gi and had black hair. It was currently tied in a pig tail to keep said hair out of his way. The mists cleared, and they saw hundreds of springs. Each spring had a bamboo pole sticking out of it.

"Well pops," the younger of the two said. "This doesn't look that bad. Maybe ya finally had a good idea."

A tour guide approached the two travelers. Even as he began to speak the elder traveler was leaping to the top of a bamboo pole. The young man almost followed. Then paused to listen to the guide. Unlike his father, the youth wanted to know exactly what was in store.

"Wait, you no go there, very dangerous!" The guide was yelling.

"What's so dangerous 'bout water?" The youth asked.

"Over one hundred springs, each with own tragic story of animal what drown there." The guide told him.

"So?" The youth replied casually.

"Legend say any who in cursed spring take body of last drown there." The guide told him. "Very tragic."

"You coming, boy?" The older man called out.

This caused the boy to chuckle. He didn't really believe in magic or curses. Still, it would be better to be safe. The added danger would make training that much more difficult. And thus more worth while. It was one of the few things he agreed with his father on. So thinking, the youth jumped to the top of a pole.

"Prepare to get wet, old man. Saotome Ranma never loses.”

For ten minutes they sparred mid-air. Then finally the boy got the upper hand. A flying ax kick launched the boy onto another pole, while sending his father down into a pool. Keeping an eye on the pool below, the boy jumped several poles away from his current position. His jaw dropped when out of the pool a panda wearing his father's gi emerged. The boy's shock was such that he didn't hear what the guide was saying.

"That's it, I'm done with this. I ain't turning into no animal cause yer an idiot, Pops."

With that proclamation the youth made her way to the edge of the cursed springs. The entire time he was dodging punches and kicks from the panda. With a flip, he landed on the ground below. The ground was muddy however, and his foot slipped. With mounting horror the boy realized he was falling into a spring himself.

As the boy surfaced the guide spoke. "Very bad, Sir. Fall in spring of drown gi..." he paused as two leathery wings emerged from the water. They were attached to a red headed girl. "That new."

As Ranma submerged in the water he almost panicked. His gi felt too tight for a moment. Then a ripping, and the gi was no longer tight. Nor was it held on by much either. His head broke the surface, and Ranma gasped for air. An odd pull caused Ranma to lose his balance while climbing out of the pool however. Falling on his face, a burst of unexpected pain called further attention to the new parts.

Not entirely sure what had just happened, Ranma opened the gi. The sight was naturally enough quite a shock. His well muscled chest was gone. In it's wake was two fleshy mounds. This alone was a shock. Further down was another one. Ranma's manhood was gone. There wasn't a gaping wound. It was just gone, as if it had never existed. Fleshy mounds on chest, manhood gone, the evidence was impossible to ignore.

Saotome Ranma realized that he had become a she. The how was obvious. The why, less so. But there was one thing which Ranma did know. This couldn't entirely be blamed on his father. After all, he had been warned. It had been his, no make that her choice to ignore the warning in the first place. She did have to wonder how the grass had been muddy if it hadn't been raining, and he wasn't even close to where the stupid panda had splashed down.

XxXxX

It had been a couple weeks since the incident at the training grounds. In that time the boy turned girl had learned much about her new body. Most of the gained knowledge had embarrassed her greatly. Things weren't all bad though. The first week had been nice. A shriveled up old crone had helped Ranma learn to fly, as well as taught several useful techniques. Including learning how to store vast quantities of items using an interesting martial arts technique. And then there was Shampoo.

Ranma gazed nervously at his wife. The challenge match had been tough. She was very skilled, and it took everything Ranma had to win. He'd been surprised when Shampoo had pulled him down for a kiss. But still the youth had turned into the kiss. It had felt wonderful. An equal surprise had been finding out that he'd managed to accidentally convert a vow to kill into a marriage.

"Thanks for coming with me," Ranma told her. "Don't know how long I could have handled being apart."

Genma's reaction to his son bringing along a wife had been priceless. Of equal amusement to the couple was his reaction to stopping every few hours to satisfy Ranma's needs. The aqua-transexual had been spending most of the time in his cursed form. After all, water seemed attracted to the youth. And Ranma enjoyed the feeling of freedom gained.

They had discovered Ranma actually didn't need sleep in his cursed form. Not if he was able to feed regularly. And Ranma did so enjoy feeding. He'd made sure to never take too much. Especially after that first night. His demonic appetites however seemed insatiable and very hard to deny. Nor was regular food needed. This too was a reason for staying a demoness. The food supplies Ranma carried were mostly for Shampoo. As was the water.


The three of them gazed down at a coastal village. From here the plan was to swim to Japan. Not that Ranma intended to swim. Or to make Shampoo swim. But first, a little snack. He'd talked with his wife about it. She needed to rest if they were going to make the trip safely. And he needed to be ready too. At that moment it started to rain. A fact which made Ranma very happy.

"I'll meet you at the docks at midnight." Ranma said with a smile. She then sauntered into town.

This is wrong, but I might hurt Shampoo otherwise. She's been understanding so far. I hope she wont hate me for what I'm about to do. Already she could feel her hunger growing. It gnawed at her will relentlessly. If ever she fully gave in, Ranma was afraid of the harm she'd cause. But it was so tempting to give in. It would be so easy.

But the easy way was never Ranma's way. And yet this once the girl decided to give in, for now. She strolled down the streets, looking for likely prey. A few men whistled at her, but Ranma shuddered at the thought. Finally her eyes latched onto a woman. The person was alone. That was good. She was also very attractive. That was also good. Ranma licked her lips and approached.

Turning on her sultry charm, Ranma smiled at her chosen meal. Internally she warred with the idea of just using people for food. That was wrong. Finally a truce was made. This woman wasn't food. She was a bed partner, but not food. The fact Ranma would feed off her was irreverent.

"Would you take me home with you?" Ranma asked the woman.

Her eyes glowed faintly, although the neo-girl didn't know that. The woman nodded with a smile, and took Ranma's hand. They walked several blocks before stopping at a small house. The entire time Ranma couldn't take her eyes off her host's rear. It swayed in a most enticing way. It was with great joy that she led the woman through the house. Finding a bedroom, Ranma smiled even more.

Two sets of cloths quickly found their way to the floor. Ranma's eyes explored eagerly. The next few hours seemed to pass as a euphoric blur. Her prey's cries of passion eventually starting to get softer, and still Ranma drank deeply of herher sustaining meal. The natural elixir was too tempting. Her prey's orgasmic spasms grew smaller, and still she drank. Then the flow stopped all together.




NO! She thought in panic once the lust induced haze faded.Please

don't die please don't die... She checked the woman for a pulse, and

just barely found it. Breathing was shallow. Ranma vaguely remembered

seeing a clinic, and quickly dressed. Picking up the woman, she left the

building. The neo-girl took to the air to save time. During the panicked

flight Ranma licked her lips clean.




After landing on a nearby roof Ranma pulled her wings back inside. Next

she stepped off the roof and dropped to the ground. Her knees were bent

as feet struck. To further cushion the landing the martial artist

allowed herself to bounce forward. Thankfully the clinic was still open.

The door was kicked open, the glass shattering. Ranma ran inside and

laid her burden on the lobby's coffee table.




"I found her in an alley, I think she's hurt. Bad." Ranma said.




While she'd never been that good at lying, the fact she was clearly

concerned for the naked woman helped a lot. That, and attackers rarely

took their victims to hospitals personally. As the staff busied

themselves helping the drained woman Ranma slipped away.




The plan had originally been to feed off of several girls. That way no

one would be hurt, while Ranma could fully sate her hunger. The plan

however was now a bust. One victim, and that was all Ranma could call

that woman, had been enough to satisfy. Since this area was well known

in some circles for it's demon lore the youth knew they had to leave

right away. Fortunately it was close enough to the rendezvous time.




"Come Pops, time to go."




Ranma scooped her wife up in her arms and took to the air. Beneath them

Genma had grabbed a pair of oars and stolen a row boat. He began to

consider the folly of his many crimes. If he'd actually practiced the

honor he talked about, they could have traveled by plane or chartered a

boat. Instead Genma had to avoid leaving a trail. And especially avoid

customs.




It isn't right. The boy is suppose to be a tool, easy to manipulate.

What happened to the plan? Genma looked up into the sky as he pondered

how things had turned out. Ever since the neko-ken training Ranma had

been harder to control. That useless girl Ranma insisted on bringing

along was only the latest disobedience. While the boy hadn't truly

balked at even the most dangerous of training methods, he'd insisted on

knowing why he should preform them. Even had insisted on knowing the

dangers in advance. And Genma still wasn't sure how the boy had

discovered the retirement plan. Let alone what a dowry was.




XxXxX




In a place quite unlike anywhere on earth a woman sat. She was sitting

in a plush office char. Before the woman was a holographic computer

screen. The high tech object was very out of place, especially

considering the office was located within a medieval looking castle.

What the woman was reading however caused her eyes to twitch.




The woman reached for a phone and quickly dialed. Finally the call got

put through. "Why did you authorize the restructuring ofthat one?

What? Of course it wasn't me! I cut all ties to those traitors eons ago.

No, all my files say is a rebirth of some sort. After that everything is

sealed. That's odd. Who authorized that?"




As the woman hung up the phone she could feel a migraine coming on.

Having a bunch of rogue demons on midgard acting as a third faction was

bad enough. She didn't need a random unaligned demon running around.

Neither did her ex.A demon and god, both completely outside the

system. Wonderful. And just how did the norns manage to classify

something beyond Kami's ability to view? With a sigh she called out her

favorite underling.




"MARA! GET IN HERE!" When the mentioned demoness finally showed up Hild

sighed. "I have some new orders for you. I need you to work with the

Norn sisters. Note, not against them. There's a rogue demon on midgard

that both I and Kami-Sama need watched. Your orders are to just observe.

I don't want you interfering with what is going to happen."




"And the demon I'm suppose to watch?" Mara asked with a long suffering sigh.




"That's the problem, all the file will say is the name 'Ranma'."






Chapter 3





Tendo Dojo




She's flying over the town. The wind blows, but she doesn't feel it.

Ahead is something important. It calls to her, and she is helpless to

resist. Now past the city limits. The urban jungle replaced by one of

wood. Still further, the calling draws her forward. Now a campfire. She

descends towards it.




A boy is speaking with a beautiful woman. What they are saying she

can't quite make out. Still, from their tones it is a negotiation of

some sort. Closer she moves, curious as to why she is here. The woman's

presence is nearly overwhelming. Just being near makes it hard to focus.

Here is her destination at last.




"I need more control," The boy is saying."Ya wanna live again, but it's

my life. And that can't be allowed to happen again."




She wonders about the boy's comments even as the woman speaks. "Then we

fight, and only one will survive."




"No," The boy says. "We work together. I want control, you want to

live. So let's share."




She doesn't understand what they are talking about. And when the two

before her begin to fight, her confusion grows. The boy is very skilled

in hand to hand combat. More so then anyone she'd seen before. The woman

is also a skilled fighter, but seems to prefer range. As she watches the

fight, she notices the woman's fighting style is starting to look like

the boy's. He's getting tired. She reaches out, trying to help the boy.

Now she is the boy. The fight is even once again. Almost a dance. The

woman catches a wrist, drawing him/her into an embrace. A kiss, she

doesn't want it to end...




In the district of Nerima there stands a building. It's not a fancy

building. It's design is more functional then anything. Stone walls

surround it. The main house connects to a decently sized dojo. Once the

dojo saw a lot of use. But the owner hadn't taught in many years. These

days it saw use only during one teenage girl's war against cinder

blocks. From the noises coming from the dojo, that war was going on

currently.




Inside the house a man sat beside a table. In his hands was a post card.

As he read it, the man began to cry fountains of tears. He turned the

post card around, but who he was showing it to was a mystery. Behind the

man, a young woman was working in the kitchen. The woman cheerfully

hummed as she chopped vegetables.




"Kasumi, Nabiki, Akane!" The man called out.




From the kitchen came the young woman. When the other two didn't

immediately show up, the man sighed. "Go fetch your sisters Kasumi"




The woman, Kasumi, gave her assent. The dojo proved to be empty. The

sounds of smashing cinder block had ended. Her sister it seemed was done

and now out for a jog. This left only one other person in the house to

speak with. With that thought in mind, she started for the stairs. Just

outside of Nabiki's room she paused.Oh my, I hope she isn't doing that

again. Knocking produced no results.




"Don't come in," A female voice called out from the room.




Nabiki was laying in her bed. Her school uniform was in dissaray. The

blouse had been unbuttoned, and her skirt was laying on the floor

nearby. For the last week it had been growing harder and harder to fight

her carnal urges. The dreams of a seductive redhead didn't help either.

Ever since that first dream of a fight between two strangers, a red head

had haunted Nabiki's sleep. The knocking was getting annoying. With a

frustrated growl Nabiki got out of bed.




Ranma




Elsewhere, two teenage girls and a panda were walking down the street.

Or rather, the panda and one girl were walking. The red headed girl was

carrying the other one, who had purple hair. The rain had come suddenly.

Not that it really surprised any of the three travelers anymore. In

another time, another place Ranma would have engaged in a running

battle. She would have been intent on returning to China. But here and

now, she was more concerned for Shampoo's well being. The demon seals

carried by Genma didn't help any.




As they approached the residence, Ranma gently woke the girl. The trip

across the ocean had been taxing, and Genma had refused to stop for

longer then a night. Between the long flight, and frequent rain things

had started to get desperate. Shampoo was too weak right now. She needed

at least several days to recover her strength. And Ranma didn't trust

herself yet not to lose control again. Shampoo, she could restrain

herself with. But others she wasn't sure about yet.




"We're there," Ranma whispered to her love.




The idiot panda rang the doorbell, then walked in as soon as the door

was open. Ranma led her wife in, laying her on a couch as soon as

possible. The temptation to sate her need rose, and the girl fought it

off. The gnawing emptiness was growing however. Hot water would help,

but first she needed to deal with the people living here. She followed

the panda deeper into the house.




"Is this your friend?" A brown haired girl asked. A man shook his head.

"So you invited a panda and two girls into the house?" The man shook his

head again.




"Sorry about this, I'm Saotome Ranma," she told them. "May I please have

some hot water?"




Where the stupid panda got his signs from it tried holding up, Ranma

didn't know. Didn't really care either. She just figured it would be

easier if she did the talking. The man threw himself at her though,

engulfing Ranma in a hug. Moments later the man let go, and started to

squeeze Ranma's chest.




"Please stop."




The man backed away with obvious confusion. "I thought Ranma was a boy?"




The brown haired girl reached forward and began to fondle one of Ranma's

breasts.Mmmm, more please, Ranma thought to herself.




The girl with the short brown hair spoke. "Does she look like a boy to

you, father?"




Abruptly the brown haired girl pulled back. She looked surprised. Her

hand being removed disappointed Ranma however. There were two other

girls in the room now. One with long brown hair, the other with long

black, almost blue hair.Maybe they'll help. It was an idle thought.




Nabiki




Mmmm, more please. The thought was clear as day. And it wasn't hers.

Shocked, Nabiki backed up. If she didn't know any better, this stranger

had enjoyed being groped.Maybe they'll help. Another thought not her

own. This time she blushed deeply. Nabiki had gotten a brief image of

herself and her sisters in bed with this red headed stranger. A

disturbing image indeed. Shaking her head, Nabiki tried to focus. Hot

water, right.




"How hot does it have to be?" She asked the red head.




"Above room temp, steaming maybe. But not boiling. Please, hurry." Ranma

answered. While waiting, she decided to broach the subject of the pact.

"Tendo-san, what was the agreement ya made with pops?"




Hearing the girl ask that question was a surprise. Nabiki hadn't

expected someone who'd been learning nothing but how to fight to ever

ask it. Her father's response was disappointing though. "To unite the

schools by joining the families."




Her surprise deepened when the stranger pulled a notebook out of her

pack. Taking it, Nabiki looked at the cover.Retirement plan? What is

this? She started flipping through the notebook, then handed it to her

father. The contents had been rather enlightening. Her father's reaction

seemed normal. His waterfall of tears was annoying, but sadly normal.




"Just thought ya should know." The strange girl said. "Donno if it's

another of the panda's scams. And I hate being sold. Now, bout that hot

water?"




Kasumi chose then to return with a kettle. And Nabiki's eyes went wide

as the girl poured water on her own head. The red head grew, hair

changing to black. She grew several inches taller. The stranger's chest

visibly shrank as her shoulders became broader. Facial features subtly

shifted. And then the middle Tendo sister knew no more.




That night Nabiki sat in her locked room, typing furiously on her computer.




The dreams are continuing, but things just got weird today. I was

surprised when the girl in my dreams walked in the front door. Turns out

she, is a he. Who'd have guessed, right? The boy's name is Ranma, and

apparently he's already married. That's not all either. Father says one

of us are suppose to be engaged to Ranma.




I'm not sure if that'll still be true tomorrow. After all, Mister

Saotome kept very good records of all the times he sold Ranma's hand in

marriage to others. I counted at least a dozen times so far. It appears

to be Genma's favorite scam. I just know that's going to come back to

haunt the boy. Maybe I'll deal with it for him, for a price of course.




Switching genders wasn't Ranma's biggest surprise either. Once everyone

had calmed down, he took my sisters and I into the dojo for a private

talk. That boy is down right strange. Not only does he turn into a girl

when hit by cold water, but a demoness. I'm not sure what type, he

didn't say. I'm hoping to find out though. Can't make money without

accurate information. And I can see a fortune coming out of this.




Akane didn't take the news very well. Not surprised by that. Kuno's

announcement had been good practice for her, but clearly it's doing more

harm then good. I'm starting to worry about her. One of these days,

she's going to go too far. She may have already done so. After the shock

of learning about the curse wore off, she broke the table on Ranma's head.




Down to business, betting pools on the morning fights have dropped off.

Will need a new source of income. Kuno's the only one buying pictures of

Akane anymore too. It seems he's threatened everyone into not buying

them. If this keeps up, I wont be able to afford the bribes. If supper

was any indication, grocery costs are going to skyrocket too. Ranma

probably will refuse to get a job. That panda, Genma, doesn't seem the

type to earn money either. So it's up to me to figure out how to pay the

higher upkeep.




I've thought about entering Akane into tournaments, but Father refuses

to allow that. Something about it being beneath a 'true martial artist'.

I expect plenty of people will want information on Ranma, so that's an

easy 300,000 yen today. More if Kuno wants info, he's always willing to

pay 10,000 yen for any bit of information. Idiot, he never once looked

into my standard price. Just accepts whatever I tell him. After today

though, I'll need something else.




Don't dare try to make money off Ranma. Risking a demon getting angry

is too dangerous. Only way I could possibly make any money is off...

Wait, there's a thought, I should look up Ranma's mother. As I recall,

she has a reward offered for information regarding her son. What was

that name? Ah, Saotome Nodoka. Let's see if I can find that number.




After saving her file, Nabiki shut off the computer. Her password would

keep people out of it. She stretched and got out of the chair. Turning

to her bed, Nabiki eyed the red head laying in her bed. Idly she

wondered why she'd insisted Ranma sleep here tonight. Shrugging, Nabiki

climbed into her bed to snuggle up with Ranma.Could get use to this.




Nodoka




Ten years, for ten long years she'd been looking. Saotome Nodoka hadn't

thought about it at the time. Then a week after that useless husband of

hers had left it hit her. Genma had taken her son, and wouldn't be

returning. It had been so long that the names had lost their

significance to her. And by the time Nodoka had remembered the

significance of one Saotome Ranma, it had been too late.




She didn't know where the two would be going. All she knew was the

journey typically lasted ten years. She knew her son was probably going

to be tortured in ways even she was horrified to consider. But she

couldn't track them. At first it had been because of her arrangement

Then she'd discovered the gates refused to lock onto his location. For

ten years her son had been in the hands of a dangerous moron, and there

was nothing she could do.Hell, why did I even agree to that stupid

'man among men' contract? What a way to waste a good vacation. What did

I even see in that idiot?




If one's been alive for billions of years, they learn many things. And

one of the things Nodoka had decided to learn in this life time was

swordsmanship. Sure, others were more skilled then her. But no one could

dispute her dedication. And so it was this day that Saotme Nodoka was

practicing in her dojo when the phone rang.




"Saotome residence, can I help you? You do? He is? HE DID WHAT? Where

are you, I'll be over this afternoon."




After hanging up the phone, Nodoka scowled.Guardian of freaking time,

and I didn't see this coming a century away? He dared sell my son for

RICE? Of course he did, it's Genma. Stupid panda. I'm guessing my son's

a girl now too. That panda will pay. No one hurts my baby. No one.

Author Note: Still going through and fixing formatting errors from when I originally archived this from Fanfiction dot Net. so the formatting cleanup will continue sporadically. The full story is written, but in my word processing program it's about 152 pages long. Thus I'll be uploading updates only after posting an equal (roughly) length buffy cross. You know, due to site rules.
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