Chapter Four: How the Deed was Done Edit
Hmph, so now I've finally found you, Kenoru, she thought to herself. Shampoo walked off of the gangplank of the ship she had just spent the last week on, and onto the docks of the San Francisco bay area. She inhaled. God how she hated places like this. She hated Nerima, she hated Hong Kong, and she hated all other 'civilized' places shes ever been. But she couldn't return to her village, not until her honor was avenged.
As she walked warily off the docks and down a few streets, she reminded herself why she was doing this. She thought about it. Ranma was dead. Mousse was dead. That was all the reason she needed, and for the past four and a half years, she had been searching for him, which had brought her to this place.
Where he came from originally, she did not know, all she knew was that he was a national figure in Organized crime. This did not frighten her one bit. Kenoru was smart, she'd give him that much. He may have been skilled in the martial arts, as good, maybe even better than Shampoo herself, but rest assured, he would die for his sin. He had killed Ranma and Mousse.
Shampoo thought about it. With Ranma dead, she could return to her village, honor intact, which was a good thing. But she scolded herself. That was not a good thing to think. She had long ago accepted that Ranma did not love her, he loved Akane, and Shampoo would have to settle for friendship. Maybe it was out of love. Maybe her time in Japan had clouded her Joketsuzoku ideals, but she had accepted it. Her great- grandmother was angry, to say the least. She scolded Shampoo, told her never to return to the village, but as she left she looked at her, heartbroken, and left a note, reminding her of the 'loophole'.
Shampoo refused to lower herself to that, even for Amazon honor, she would not kill Ranma. What confused her the most, however was that if Shampoo were to kill Ranma, would she then have to kill herself? The law was that if someone, anyone had killed her intended before a marriage could be fulfilled in the village, it was her mortal duty to hunt that person down to the ends of the earth. And that was what she was doing.
Shampoo still wasn't sure who she was doing it for, Ranma, Mousse, or herself. Killing Kenoru would surely avenge the deaths of Ranma and Mousse, but it would also ensure her ability to return to the village. The whole thing made her head hurt. Shampoo was smart, but it was to confusing to think about.
As she made her way through the darkness of the city streets, she began to find her way to Chinatown. Surely, Kenoru would be there.
Suddenly, she heard it. Her reflexes snapped her into a defensive position as she watched. Out of a dark corner of the street, riddled with warehouses, several men stepped out. They're heads were all shaved, and she noted the telltale insignia of a Nazi swastika tatooed to they're arms, necks, the back of they're heads. One even sported one on his forehead. As they pulled out of the corner, each holding a weapon of some sort, whether it be chains, knifes or lead pipes, one thing was clear.
They were not going to be friendly.
"Looky here boys, we got ourselves another impure jap bitch", the leader said.
Shampoo could understand exactly what they were saying. She knew english just about as well as she knew japanese.
"Am not Japanese. Am Joketsuzoku.", she replied, looking totally unworried.
The leader shrugged. "Jap, Jokufetmolecule, whatever. Point is, your just another impurity trying to sabotage our country. You are not welcome here."
"Shampoo not want trouble", she said, knowing full well she could take them down, but not wanting to have to.
The leader burst out laughing, followed by his comrades, he replied. "You should have thought of that the moment you stepped off whatever slave ship you came in on. And what the hell kinda name is Shampoo? You gonna wash my hair, you chink bitch?"
"Shampoo is of Amazon Tribe. Not Chink. Not Jap. Am simply woman.", she replied.
"Yeah, well guess what we're gonna do to you, 'woman'. Your type is not welcome here, and we're gonna make an example outta you. First we're gonna beat you within an inch of your life. Then we're gonna do whatever the hell we want to you, then we'll probably finish you off.", he shrugged, "If you're nice, we may even let you live, and sell you on the slave market."
Shampoo frowned. She knew full well there was still slavery in America. From sweat shops to farms, slavery wasn't as abolished as people thought. She didn't like the idea of being sold to such a place, and decided it was best to get it over with. She took a defensive stance and smiled.
"Ooh, she knows martial arts guys. Might want to have Mike take care of this bitch.", the leader said, as a tall slender man took up a similiar stance.
'Mike' spoke. "You're gonna get yours, bitch. I'm a third degree blackbelt in American Kempo."
"Why Shampoo care what color belt is?", she replied.
'Mike' laughed and started to lunge at her. Shampoo, still unsure of his underlying talent, kept a mainly defensive stance, and lashed out a few test attacks. After seeing his speed, she smirked and completely dropped her stance.
"Shampoo not fight you.", she said, "You too weak."
This enraged Mike. He lunged at her with all of his best attacks, which was exactly what Shampoo wanted. A quick crescent kick the the waste, and a reverse upward punch to the chin, and 'Mike' was sprawled out on the concrete, completely unconscious.
Shampoo deducted two different outcomes of her actions. 1. The others would see her skill and run off, or 2. They would become angry and gang up on her. Shampoo hoped it was the latter.
After a moment, the gang began to realize what had happened. Shampoo smirked at them, still remaining in a calm stance as the began to surround her, each of them brandishing the weapon of they're choice.
The first came, easily put out. She simply grabbed his lead pipe and pushed it in the opposite direction, banging him on the head and knocking him out. Even one without martial arts experience could figure that out.
Then two more came, one with a knife and the other with a chain. One of either side of her. The knife-man was smirking, getting ready to run her through with the miniature blade he held in his hands. The other was swinging his chain above his head, getting ready to strike. She timed her move just so, that she had jumped up just when the chain was being released from the mans grip, grabbed the other man by the shoulders and shoved him to where she was just standing. The knife dropped from his hands as the chain struck, and he hit the ground. The chain-man had lost his chain, and was heading towards her bare-handed. The last two members of the gang were doing something similiar. Then one of them pulled out a gun.
Shampoo had dealt with guns before. They were tricky machines, but it was also possible to dodge the bullets. The normal, everyday martial artist could not dodge a speeding bullet in any respect, but with Shampoo's speed, she could easily dodge it.
The man with the gun smirked. She recognized him quickly as the group leader, and then mentally remembered the position of every person. The chain-man had stopped after seeing the gun, and joined in on the taunting. The third man was just sitting there, smirking.
"You ready to die now bitch?", the leader said. "We were gonna letcha live after making you hurt, but now we're just gonna kill ya."
"Wait.", the third man said.
"I'm gonna make her hurt still."
"Go right ahead."
The third man walked up to Shampoo and hit her across the face. Shampoo just stood there, smiling. It hadn't hurt her. Not with her endurance, but the man would surely pay. She waited for the right time. Three strikes across the face later, and with Shampoo still smiling, the man got pissed.
The fifth strike came quickly, and totally unexpected. But Shampoo wasn't on the recieving end this time. She had pulled a bonbori from her belt and struck him across the face, sending him sprawling to the man with the gun. They connected, and the man with the gun went down fast. Shampoo heard a muffled gunshot as the man she threw became limp.
She had tried to avoid a death. Killing wasn't a pretty thing, even if honor demanded it be done. EVen it was to teach a lesson. But it was too late. The man, she could tell with her blind eye, was dead. Shampoo didn't want to hand around any longer, and then jumped into the air, landing on the roof of a warehouse. She ran towards the lights in the distance.
"I.. I... I don't know.", Ranma replied, cradling his wound. It no longer hurt, amazingly, and as he removed his hand, all that remained was a scab. A scab of some strange liquid he had never seen. It glowed neon green, but when Ranma saw it, he knew. He knew it was his blood.
"What the hell are you?", Makaro screamed, still being held up to the wall by Mousse.
Mousse was deciding. Deciding whether or not to kill the man he held with his single hand. He considered it. Considered it long and hard before he decided to let him live. The old Mousse would have done it in a heartbeat, but not now. Mousse was going to clean himself up. There would be repercussions of his actions, of course. But he would deal with those when the time came. He just held Makaro against the wall.
"Whats happened to me?", Ranma asked himself, oblivious to what was going on around him.
"I tried to tell you.", a voice said, coming from the entrance.
Ranma looked up. "You."
"Yes, its me. I told you. You must accept it", the man that Ranma had met earlier in the day replied.
"Accept what? That I'm dead!? Its bloody impossible!"
"Ranma, during your life, how many things have happened to do that were deemed impossible?"
Ranma recalled his life. "A few."
"More than most people I'd imagine. According to my sources, you were a good soul in life. How you were sent to hell when you died, I have no idea. But the fact remains. You died."
"But I can't be dead!"
"Remember the deal Ranma? Malebolgia, that heartless fiend tricked you. He offered you something he knew you wouldn't refuse, and then warped it all."
"Ranma, was it a love? A Place? Money? Why did you come back?"
Ranma looked towards the ground. "A..Akane."
"Ahh... A love... I made a similiar choice. Now let me ask you, how long has it been?"
"And since that time, you're love has remarried, presumably to a close friend, and had a child. Correct?"
Ranma looked up. "How did.. How did you know?"
The old man simply shook his head. "Its the way Malebolgia works."
Soun, sitting off to the side of this conversation finally decided to interupt. "Uhh, excuse me sir. But who exactly are you?"
The man turned to him. "I am sorry for not introducing myself. I am Count Nicholas De Cogliostro."
Soun nodded and stretched his hand out. "I'm So--"
"Soun Tendo, father of Kasumi, Nabiki and Akane."
"How did.. How did you know?"
"When I felt Ranma's presence's manifesting a few days ago, I had to look up some old files. At first I had thought the new Hellspawn would have been a fellow named Al Simmons, but it seems I was wrong."
"You kept files on us?"
The old man nodded. "I have to. Its my duty to guide new Hellspawn, so they don't take the wrong path."
"Wrong path?", Ranma interupted. "What do you mean?"
"I would imagine you have met someone recently. Someone you did not know, but they knew you. Possibly a human, maybe not. Most definately a disgusting one however."
"There was a Clown."
"Ahh. His favorite human form. That, my friend, was the Violator. One of the Seven Phlebiac brothers, and servant of Malebolgia."
"So he's a bad guy then?"
"Yes. Undoubtedly. He is powerful beyond belief. New Spawns cannot hope to defeat him in battle. Unless they have a trick up they're sleeves."
"Whats his deal?"
"He is charged with training you to be a warrior for hells army, however he has.. personal beliefs that would rather you died by his hand than be his superior. He believes humans are not meant to be high ranking officials in the army of hell."
"Excuse me, but can _SOMEONE_ please tell me whats going on?", Kinami interupted, now gaining consciousness.
"Ahh, Kinami. Where is Nabiki?", Soun asked.
Kinami pointed to the floor behind a table where she had fainted.
"Hey, Ranma.. Sorry for fainting back there, but I didn't expect your face to look like that. I'd seen pictures of you and if you'd told us, maybe I wouldn't have reacted like that."
Mousse chuckled, "Pretty blunt, isn't she?"
Kinami suddenly remembered Mousse, she turned to face him and put her hands in front of her. "What the hell are you still doing here? Get out!"
Soun placed his hand on Kinami's shoulder. "It's alright, Kinami. Its only Mousse, he's not going to hurt us."
Now confused as ever, Kinami sat down and massaged her temples. "Either someone tells me what the hell is going on, or I'm going to go nuts."
Soun began to explain, but when he got to the part "Ranma's dead.", she got _REALLY_ confused.
"I'm sorry for telling you like this, Ranma. But you had to be warned. Now. I must go. If the times comes when my presence is required, I'll find you.", the old man said as he departed.
"Wait!", Ranma said, but it was too late, Cog was leaving, and had utterly disappeared after leaving therestaurant.
"What should we do with him?", Mousse finally asked. Truth be known, his arm was getting tired.
"Drop him.", Ranma said, walking up to him.
Makaro fell to the floor, and curled himself up, cowering from Ranma's presence.
Ranma grabbed him by the collar. "You bastard.", he began, "If I ever, ever, EVER see your ugly face even grace my eyes, or if I ever hear your name, you _WILL_ die before the day is out... You can threaten me, you can even try to kill me, but once you threaten my friends, you've signed your own death certificate. Now go, get out of here before I change my mind."
Ranma dropped Makaro and he ran out of the restaurant, shouting back obscenities and threats.
"Hey Nabs, you awake?", Kinami inquired, shaking her unconscious friend. Suddenly, she began to stir.
"I think so. Was it just me or did Ranma look like he went through a blender?", she asked, sitting up.
"A fireball would be more accurate", Mousse answered. Nabiki suddenly tensed up.
"Mousse? What the hell is going on?", she asked.
Mousse looked down towards the floor. "I'm sorry Nabiki. I should have stopped a long time ago."
"Nabiki, your awake?", Ranma asked.
Nabiki tensed further. "Ranma, how.. What... Your face."
"I know. I don't know the whole story, but apparently I'm dead."
Soun helped his daughter to her feet. "Are you okay Nabiki?"
"I'm fine, its just.. a little.. strange."
"You think its strange for you? Look at me? Last thing I remember was coming back from China, and the failed wedding. The next thing I know I'm running around on the roof of Furinkan, and ending up six years down the road."
"Then, you don't remember how you died?", Mousse asked, unbelieving.
Ranma shook his head. "I heard from Kuno that it was some guy named Kenoru, and then you said the same thing."
Nabiki dropped her mouth open. "You talked to Kuno?"
"Yeah, he aparently took up Kenpo. He tried to fight, but next thing I know he was knocked unconscious. Didn't even lay a finger on him either."
"Whoa. You _FOUGHT_ with Kuno? Thats weird. From the way hes been talkign about you since you.. uhh.. went away, hes been acting like your best friend."
"Yeah, I noticed. He found me honourable and such, but I think he didn't believe I was actually me. Besides that, I've got tonnes of questions I need answered. Before I get into the big stuff I hafta ask this. What happened to Ukyo? I've heard what happened to pretty much everybody except for her."
Nabiki suddenly pulled her wallet out of her back pocket and pulled out a letter, attached to a pink sheet of paper. She handed it to Ranma.
As Ranma read the letter, he finally began to understand.
The letter read:
Dear Nabiki Tendo,
Hey there, its me. Ukyo. The 'cute' fiancee.. Ha. Thats a laugh.. I'm sorry for storming off so quickly like that last week, but as you could probably imagine, it was hard to handle. As you've probably already noticed, I've stapled the deed to Ucchans on the back, and its yours to do with as you please. Although I do have one request.. Don't sell it. Maybe its just sentimentality, but I love that restaurant, and I couldn't willingly place it in the handles of someone I didn't trust... With money that is. Which is the reason I've given it to you.
Anyways, I'm going away for a while. Maybe I'll come back someday. Maybe I won't. I've just got alot of thinking to do. Ten years of wanting revenge for my fathers Yatai, and another year of bliss. And now this. I couldn't handle it. Maybe after some time I'll learn, but until then, good old Ucchan won't be coming around much.
Give my love to Ranchan, and wish him and Akane the best of luck. I'm sure I'll understand someday, but in the meantime, I'm heading on the road. I might do some training, I may travel the world. But I'll always remember my friends.
Tell Ranma and Akane I'm sorry for any trouble I've caused them.
Ranma stared. If he could allow tears to come pouring out, he would have. He even noted the stressed handwriting in the final two paragraphs, and the pattern of tear stains running throughout the sheet. He silently gave the letter back to Nabiki.
Nabiki tried to lighten the mood. "You acted pretty much the same the first time you read it."
"I.. If I had known it would have caused her that much pain.... I.. I don't know."
Mousse exhaled. "It was slightly different with Shampoo... Believe it or not, she didn't love you as much as you thought. At least not in the way you or I would understand."
"What do you mean?"
"Well, I spent my adolescence outside of the village. So I was exposed to the outsider culture, and train of thought. Love in the village is based around honour and laws. Nothing more. Outside of the village, I learned and used the rest of the worlds vision of love. Not the warped way the village had done things."
"I had suspected it to be something like that.", Soun interupted.
Mousse nodded. "Yes, well. When Shampoo had lived here for that year, she too had learned the love of the outside world. But she was still under control of the laws of Joketsuzoku. She couldn't ignore them. Thats why she pursued you like she did."
"And after Akane and I got married?"
"Well, she was not happy with it, to say the least. But apparently her view of love had changed, and she loved you enough to accept your decision. Law or no law. She still tried to change your mind though, but not so relentlessly."
"And then I died."
"Well, not quite like that. Akane had gotten sick. _VERY_ sick. She would have died if Kenoru hadn't showed up."
"I thought he was the guy who killed me."
"He was. Here, let me explain. Akane had something known as the Jimura Flu. It was a result of what had happened during the Saffron incident. She suddenly became unable to hold liquids. She was dying a slow death of Dehydration. The doctors were unable to do anything. Even when they tried to give her liquids through an IV. Her body kept rejecting it."
"So, Kenoru had the cure?"
"Yes. He showed up one day, this was about a month before you died, and offered her the cure, for a price."
"What was the price?"
"A favour. A favour from you."
"Yes, well, you agreed. And in agreeing you had signed a verbal agreement."
"So he called in the favour."
"Yes, a week later. He told you... He told you to kill someone."
"An American. An english teacher at a college north of Tokyo who had apparently made the wrong people angry."
"And.. What happened?"
"You refused. Even if it meant your death, you refused."
"He had sent several hitmen after you and Akane. One day, you had enough. You came to the Nekohanten asking for our help."
"What exactly happened?"
"Well, the night you came to get us, you seemed extremely edgy. You told us you had had enough, and were going to stop Kenoru once and for all. Shampoo and I agreed to help, since Ryoga was missing and unable to help. Akane was still recovering in the hospital. You left Soun and your father to protect her, and we set off."
"I was edgy?"
"Yes. We didn't find out why until we were in China."
"Yes, now let me finish. You had aparently had a nasty dream, screaming how 'you didn't mean to do it'. When we woke you up, you explained what had happened. Kenoru's hitmen had come for Akane while you were away. It was fortunate that you managed to show up right then, because another second later, and Akane would be dead. You were angry, and engaged in combat with him. He was knocked out of the window and died. You had killed him."
"What? Is this true?", Soun asked.
"I.. I don't remember.", Ranma replied.
"It certainly does explain a few things.", Mousse continued. "Like how you were sent to hell."
"But.. I killed someone?"
Mousse nodded. "Agressively. The only reason you weren't pursued by the police is because a nurse had witnessed the whole thing. Anyways, we had made our way to China, and found Kenoru in Hong Kong."
"He fled.", Mousse clenched his fist. "He fled across the country, but he was a smart bastard. He knew things about us, as well as things we didn't know ourselves. He had managed to hide his true skill for so long, looking as nothing but a high ranking member of the Triad."
"Who was he? Really?"
"I still don't know. He had fled so far, and we tracked him every inch of the way. We finally caught up with him eventually."
"Who knows. To tell the truth, I'm still not exactly sure. All I knew was that is was the base of a mountain."
"Well, we started to chase him up the side of the mountain. We had finally cornered him against a rock face. But at that point, he made his true skill known. The battle was long and hard. We had fought him for about three hours, and we were starting to tire rapidly. He had eventually fought us to a cliff edge. First to fall over was Shampoo. We had thought she fell all the way down and died, but she was hanging for her life on a ledge far below. That was when Kenoru launched his final attack."
"Yes. I think he could have done it at any point, but he was just playing with us. It had the same effect as a flamethrower, but alot stronger, and it was heading directly for me. At that point, I gave up completely."
"You jumped in the path of the attack. Whether it was bravery or exhaustion, I just dont know. But you gave your own life to save mine. You were burnt to a crisp, I was burned pretty bad too. My face isn't the worst of it. I've still got scars all over my body. But I survived."
"Oh my god."
"About half an hour later, Shampoo managed to make her way back up. I was barely conscious, and in alot of pain. I finally slipped out after Shampoo had knelt by us and started crying. When I woke up, she was gone. And I guess I was gone too, in a way. That was one of the main reasons I started in my line of work, I guess. I did alot of work for individuals, then last month, I agreed to work for the Yakuza, in an effort to start working for the Triad. Once in the Triad, I could start looking for Kenoru, and have revenge."
"What happened to Shampoo?"
Mousse sighed in thought. "I saw her last month. Five years older, but just as beautiful. But that can't be helped now. It was in Hong Kong, I had just finished a 'job' with a regular client of mine, who I had heard had connections with the Triad. Aparently Shampoo had heard the same thing. I saw her in an alleyway, beating him for information. As far as I know, shes in San Fransisco."
"Most probably where Kenoru is now."
"Would there be any way to contact her?"
"Doubtful, besides. She won't come back until Kenoru is dead. Which I believe is impossible."
"Kenoru... The amount of power he had, it... It wasn't human. I don't think he's your normal everyday martial artist. He hid it well, but made it look like he was hiding nothing. With his skill, he could not only take you, me and Shampoo, but probably every other Martial artist you've ever met, all at once."
"Even the old letch?"
"Huh. Funny you should mention that, Ranma.", Nabiki interupted.
"When Shampoo came back and told us what happened, Happosai went nuts with rage. He set out to find him, and promised he to never come back until you were avenged."
"WHAT?! THAT OLD LETCHER?!"
"Its true Ranma.", Soun continued, "The master was so distraught at the loss of your life, and the most talented heir to the anything- goes school, he left immediately. He even left his panties."
"How come I have trouble believing you?"
"Its true. The master has shown his true self a few times in the past, but tries to keep it hidden under the mask of an old pervert."
"I'm getting a headache", Ranma said, shaking his head.
"You're not the only one", Kinami agreed.
"Anyways, he sent a postcard from San Fransisco last week, saying he was getting closer to Kenoru. He had even spotted him on the street."
"So its pretty safe to assume that Kenoru is out there."
"More than likely", Mousse nodded his head.
"So then what are we waiting for? Lets go out there and give them a hand!", Ranma yelled.
"I'm all for that, Ranma.", Nabiki put her finger up. "But theres a slight problem."
"Well, who here has money to get us to San Fransisco?"
"Don't you have any money?"
Nabiki shook her head, "You think after what Gendo and Makaro put me through, I'd have _ANYTHING_?"
"How much do you have?"
"I've got enough to get one person across, one way. Give me about two weeks, and I'll have enough."
"So we've gotta wait two weeks then?"
Nabiki nodded. "Unless you can find an alternative money source."
Mousse scowled. "I should have kept some money from my work."
Ranma shook his head, "No. I wouldn't feel right flying across on dirty money."
Mousse stared at the floor. "I guess your right."
"What about Genma and Nodoka?", Soun suggested, "They've got money!"
"No.", Ranma refused, "I don't want them knowing about me just yet."
"Well, the amount of money those two fools have leeched off of me left me broke, so I'm estimating a couple weeks until we can afford the trip across."
Kinami then spoke, "I'm coming too."
Ranma shook his head, "No. We can't have that. Martial Artists only."
Kinami huffed, then took up a Kenpo stance, "What the hell do you think I am?"
Soun nodded his head. "Thats right, For the past four and a half years, Kinami has been a student of Anything-Goes. Although she leans more towards Ryoga's style."
"Damn straight. The guy might still be better than me, but I can give him a run for his money."
Ranma shook his head. "Ryoga an Anything-Goes Sensei. I never would have imagined."
"Well, Anything-Goes can adapt any style into it, after all. Ryoga has improved over the years. He's even managed to master the Kachuu Tenshin Amiguriken, its still not as fast as yours was, but he can do it now."
"Your kidding.. Is nothing sacred?"
"Well, besides the Old Ghoul, I thought I was the only one who knew how."
"Well, Akane had explained to Ryoga how you trained for it, and he did the same thing."
"Indeed. You should see the burn scars on his hand. I never would have thought he could master it."
"Cologne didn't either, aparently. She was going to try and teach him that, before she gave up and taught him the Breaking Point Technique.", Ranma replied, remembering that particular training trip.
"But he was determined."
"Well, I guess if anything, Ryoga was determined."
"What happened to Cologne anyways?", Ranma asked, looking towards Mousse.
"Beats me. I haven't heard from her since she left five and a half years ago. I could care less though."
"Mousse, my boy. Where are you staying?"
Mousse thought for a second. "Nowhere now. I was staying at a hotel paid for by Makaro and his men, but now I don't think its safe to be there.", he huffed, "Not that I couldn't defend myself against any type of cowardly attack that moron would try on me, but I still would rather not have to worry about it. I'll just make my way around."
"Nonsense, you can stay at the Dojo."
Nabiki nodded, "Sure, you can have my old room."
Mousse smiled, "I would be honoured. Thank you."
"Which reminds me, Mr Tendo?", Ranma asked.
"Why were you so quick to get me out of the house this morning. You would think after me being gone for so long, you would postpone the morning class."
"Well, yes. I apologize for that, Ranma. I'm sorry for not explaining, but it involved Ryoga. As you now know, he teaches at the dojo now as well."
"Could he even find the dojo?"
"Well, yes. His directional skills have improved."
"Really?", it was more of a statement than a question.
"Yes. Anyways, I had to explain it to him before I--"
"YOU TOLD HIM?!?"
"Yes, why, what--"
"He had to know. He was your best friend."
"But, he'll tell Akane."
"I told him not to, for now. But Akane should know."
"No. I can't hurt her like that."
Nabiki chose this moment to interupt. "Ranma, Akane went through hell after you died. But look at it this way. If it were the other way around. If Akane had died and come back five years later in your condition. Would _YOU_ want to know?"
Ranma stood silently for a few moments. "Yes. I suppose I would."
Ryoga sighed heavily. He looked up one street, and decided against walking in that direction. It had been about a week since he had gotten lost, but that was only for a few minutes. He managed to backtrack to a point he knew, but that was not the case this time. After hearing from Soun of Ranma's return to Nerima, he had been so distracted, that he couldn't find his way anywhere. From what he could tell, he was likely still in Nerima, but where in Nerima, was unknown. He decided to use his last resort. Sit himself on a street corner and wait.
Akane looked up at the time. She sighed and shook her head, then helped little Ranma on with his coat. She grabbed the keys to the car and left, with Ranma in tow.
- Oh, Ryoga*, she thought, *You were doing so well.*
"Mommy, daddy lost again?", Ranma asked.
Akane nodded and smiled, "Yes, we've got to go for a drive and find him."
This was normal for little Ranma. His father hadn't gotten lost in a while, but his mother and father had sorted out a last resort, that if Ryoga got lost for a long period of time, she'd drive around and look for him.
Debating what her first destination would be, she decided on her sisters restaurant.
"How long?", she asked.
"He's been here for about 15 hours so far.", the voice answered over the telephone.
"Nerima, Japan eh? Its been a few years since a Japanese Spawn has shown up."
"Yes, well, according to these readings, he's already used some force, we don't know who against yet, but its safe to assume someone is dead."
"Don't count your eggs before they've hatched."
"Angela, are you coming out or what?"
"My license has been revoked, Celeste."
"That never stopped you before."
"Good point. Give me a couple days. I'll just finish up some business out here and I'll catch the next flight over."
"Hurry Angela, this one is displaying alot of power."
"Have I ever failed before?"
"Well, there was that one back in 486."
"Jeez, miss one and you're branded for life."
"Alright, well just make sure you hurry. Tiffany may want a piece of this one."
Angela frowned, "Not this time. I'll be there in two days."