Dual Destinies
The characters of Ranma ½ belong to the remarkably talented Rumiko 
Takahashi. This story is based on said characters and I write this only 
for entertainment.
<>: Thoughts
<" "> Chinese language
{" "} Telepathic communication
                                  Chapter 10
The park…
     Ranma Blue was astonished as he watched Taron float above him. As 
the immortal floated down to the ground, the young martial artist 
excitedly asked, "Are you going to teach me that?"
     Taron smiled and nodded at his wide-eyed pupil as he responded, 
"What you saw was a reverse application of that gravity-altering 
technique that I taught you a few days ago."
     "You mean, instead of making things heavier, I can make them 
lighter? Maybe make them weightless altogether?"
     "That's right Ranma Blue. In addition to manipulating the elements 
of nature, you can also achieve physical control over certain universal 
laws. Gravity is just another aspect of the physical realm."
     "Cool!" Ranma Blue paused for a moment, then his eyes opened 
wide. "Hey! If that's true, then I could not only be able to just float… I 
can actually FLY!"
     "You're catching on boy!"
On the other side of the park…
     "Whoa! How are you doing that?" Ranma Red asked as he watched 
his teacher Soren float in midair, ten feet above the ground.
     Soren smiled as he began drifting down to the ground. "What you 
have witnessed was my levitation spell."
     "That's right." Soren said as he touched down. "This spell will enable 
you to lift heavy objects from a distance. As you can see, it can also 
work on one's own body."
     "Is this like my brother's power to increase gravity, just in reverse?"
     "Not really. You see, my brother is teaching Ranma Blue how to 
manipulate the force of gravity on an object. What you have seen is 
something different. Instead of just changing the amount of 
gravitational pull on an object, I am using my ki to manipulate the 
mystical forces in the area to NEGATE the force of gravity. In essence,
 I am countering gravity's pull with a force that is opposite to it."
     "Wow!" Ranma Red remarked excitedly. He was eager to learn the 
new technique.
     "Indeed. However, there are limits to this ability. It cannot increase 
the gravitational pull on an object, since it has nothing to do with 
gravity. Secondly, it takes a great deal more concentration than simple 
gravity manipulation."
     "What are the good points about this power?"
     "Well, besides being able to being able to fly and move objects from 
a distance, you'll be able to use this power to form a protective barrier. 
You might not be able to change an object's weight, but you are able to 
increase or decrease an object's speed. Furthermore, you can also 
change an object's direction. I believe the scientists of Earth have 
termed this as psychokinesis."
     "What are we waiting for? Let's get started!"
Meanwhile, somewhere else in reality…
     While the twin Ranmas begin to increase their already formidable 
abilities, two dark figures were observing the scenes from another 
place that was between places. Unlike the Realm of Infinity though, this 
place was dark and foreboding. There was hardly any light as the two 
shadowy beings floated in a void of gray. Stray chunks of rock floated 
aimlessly in the sea of nothingness as swirling mists wafted about. This 
was the Realm of Oblivion.
     The two figures seemed to be the only living beings in the place. 
They were identical in appearance, but one could hardly call them 
human. Both figures had massively muscled, humanoid bodies, but had 
blue-tinted scales instead of skin. Their mouths seemed to be set in 
permanent scowls with huge fangs protruding up from their lower lips. 
Their eyes were red with slitted pupils. Their fingers had long nails that 
resembled talons and each had their long, bone-white hair done up in a 
ponytail. The only way to tell them apart was that one wore bright, 
crimson battle armor on his arms, legs and torso. The rest of his 
clothing consisted of black boots, pants and tunic. The other had steel-
blue armor. Both also sported black capes that flowed down to the 
middle of their backs. 
     The two beings frowned as they looked at the scenes that were being 
displayed on a flat disc that hung in midair. They watched with disgust 
as they saw the twin Ranmas master the their new techniques with 
unbelievable ease. Finally, the blue armored one turned toward his 
     "I cannot believe that Taron and Soren have found their champions!" 
Said the blue-armored demon, his voice dripping with utter hatred.
     The one in the red armor nodded. "Indeed. Sharoka will be not be 
     Suddenly, the images on the disc became blurred and the edges 
started to quiver as it tried to maintain its shape. The red-armored 
demon raised his hand and fired a blast of red elderitch energy at the 
disc. The viewing portal became stabilized and resumed its function. As 
the two man-beasts saw each Ranma successfully master his new 
technique, they became ever more angry.
     "Blast those twins!" Said the demon in the blue armor. "At this rate, 
they will be ready long before the time of the Contract Renewal! I 
cannot believe any mortal could learn that quickly!"
     "What are we to do Zuruka?" Asked the demon in the red armor.
     "At this point Arcodos, nothing." Zuruka replied. "Although the 
dimensional barrier weakens as the time of the Contract Renewal grows 
near, we are still unable to cross over into the Earth Realm. It is taking 
much of our power just to see what is happening!"
     "I had thought that the Masters had destroyed one of the Chosen 
Ones sixteen years ago!"
     "Yes. It had taken the life energies of nearly half the Dark World 
Council in order to pierce the dimensional barrier and destroy one of 
the twins! However, that blasted Kami-sama had managed to save 
Ranma's brother by merging the two of them together! I had thought he 
had gone mad when he arranged for the Saotome boy to be immersed in 
the Spring of Drowned Girl! Now I see that it was all part of his plan!"
     "How will we explain this to Master Sharoka?"
     "He is probably aware of this situation by now. All we can do now is 
wait. And watch for any opportunity!" 
     With these words, the two agents of the Dark Word turned their 
attention back toward the glowing disc.
The Earth Realm…
     It was late afternoon as the Saotome brothers headed toward their 
mother's house. However, they were not walking or leaping between 
rooftops. They were not even touching the ground. Instead, they had 
decided to use their newfound skills and were flying at an altitude of 
1500 feet. As they sped through the air, the two engaged in an aerial 
sparring match.
     Ranma Red and his brother darted back and forth as they fought in 
midair. They threw midair punches and kicks as they swooped, dived 
and streaked across the skyline like maddened dragonflies.  fter thirty 
minutes or so, the twins began to feel the strain of their attacks while 
keeping themselves aloft. Deciding to conserve their power, the two 
made a beeline to the house of Nodoka Saotome.
     Nodoka was just about finished with cooking dinner when she heard 
her boys call.
     "Mom! We're back!" Ranma Red shouted.
     Nodoka put down the dishes on the dining room table and went to the 
front door to greet her sons. However, when she came outside, she 
could not see her offspring anywhere. She looked around in confusion, 
but she could not locate her boys.
     "Up here Mom!" Ranma Blue called.
     Nodoka looked up and her eyes widened as she beheld her twins 
gently descending to the ground from above. She was understandably in 
shock as her two Ranmas lightly landed beside her and took her into a 
three-way hug. After a minute, she calmed down and began hugging them 
back, realizing that she should expect a few surprises. After all, it's not 
every day that her only child suddenly becomes twins, rub elbows with 
goddesses and is chosen to ensure the safety of the Earth. She was still 
getting used to the idea that she now had two children to cook for.
     Later on, the Saotome family is sitting around the dinner table as 
they finished up the evening meal. During this time, the family has been 
engaging in quiet discussion.
     "So Mom. Have you heard from Pop?" Ranma Red asked.
     "Not as yet my son." Nodoka replied, her face betraying a hint of 
annoyance at the mention of Genma. "Since he hasn't come home, I 
would assume that he was still staying at the Tendo dojo."
     "Are you sure Mom?" Ranma Blue said. "I mean, Mr. Tendo looked 
mad enough to toss Pop out on his ears!"
     "I do not think so. Your father had always assured me that he and 
Soun were the closest of friends. The fact that he had supported the 
three of you all this time and how he had forgiven Genma's misdeeds 
says much about his patience."
     "I guess so." Ranma Blue admitted. "Pop and Mr. Tendo were always 
so close. I don't think we ever saw them not playing shogi, drinking, 
groveling in front of Happosai or trying to push us closer to Akane."
     "Yeah." Ranma Red sighed. "By the way, where do you suppose that 
old lecher is anyway?"
At the Tendo dojo…
     Both Soun and Genma are groveling in front of Happosai who is 
sitting on the floor and smoking his pipe. After being told of what had 
occurred, the wizened master had clearly become upset.
     "You two are a disgrace to the Anything-Goes School of Martial 
Arts!" The ancient pervert took a puff of his pipe. "Not only did you 
lose TWO chances of uniting the schools, but I am now left WITHOUT 
     "We're sorry master!" Genma meekly apologized.
     "Forgive us master!" Soun said with tears in his eyes.
     "SILENCE!" The old lecher roared. "It seems that it's up to me again 
to bail your sorry behinds out of the fire again!"
     A new ray of hope dawned on the two sniveling martial artists as they 
raised their heads and said, "You will?"
     Happosai nodded as he sat up. "Don't worry boys, by the time I'm 
through with those twins, they'll be begging to be back here! Besides…" 
Happosai began to head toward the door, "it'll be nice to have those 
lovely breasts to grope once more. Now with two of them, I'll have 
twice as much fun! Hee! Hee!" 
     As soon as Happosai was out of earshot, Soun looked at Genma and 
asked, "Do you think we should tell him that the twins are no longer 
     "Are you kidding Tendo?! I don't want to make him any madder than 
he already is!"
The House of Nodoka…
     "I'm still very worried about this Dark World that you have told me 
about." Nodoka said. "I have just been reunited with the two of you and 
met your fiancées. I don't think I would be able to stand it if I were to 
lose one or both of you. It sounds so dangerous!"
     "Mom, please understand. We have to do this!" Ranma Red stated. "If 
we don't do this, the world will end! If that happens, then it won't make 
any difference whether we die or not!"
     "This is the reason why we're here now!" Ranma Blue added. "This is 
what all the training is for. We are the Chosen Twins. It's our 
     The mother of the Saotome twins looked at her offspring with an 
appraising eye. Finally, she gave them a small smile as she said, "It is 
good that you both take your responsibilities seriously. I am grateful 
that you are not like your father."
     {"We're glad too!"} 
     {"Hey Taron!"} Both brothers responded.
     Suddenly, there was a flash of light and the original champions of 
Earth appeared before the Saotomes. Nodoka was startled by their 
sudden appearance, but her sons came to her side, assuring her that 
everything was all right.
     "We're terribly sorry about dropping like this, but it was important 
that we speak to you and your sons, personally." Soren began. "Oh, I'm 
sorry. We haven't introduced ourselves. I am Soren."
     "And I am Taron."
     The twins bowed to Nodoka, who relaxed when she realized that they 
were her sons' benefactors. "It is a pleasure to finally meet the ones 
who have given my family back to me."
     "We are pleased that you have come to terms with Ranma's situation 
so quickly." Soren nodded to both brothers.
     "Hey Taron! What brings you both here? I thought our training 
session was over for today." Ranma Blue asked.
     "It is." Taron replied. "However, we do need to inform you both on 
certain things that are going to happen in the near future." 
     "Is it about the Dark World?" Ranma Red inquired.
     "Yes. The dimensional barrier is becoming weaker with each passing 
day." Soren began. "As a result, Sharoka may send some of his agents 
over to this reality and try to stop you two from fulfilling your roles in 
the Contract Renewal."
     "Sharoka?" The Ranma brothers and Nodoka said.
     Both of the immortals nodded as Taron continued, "Sharoka is the 
Emperor of the Dark World. He rules his realm with the proverbial 
'iron fist.' He is incredibly cruel and would not hesitate to enslave or 
destroy all life on Earth. He was the one responsible for causing Ranma 
to be born an only child."
     Soren took up the explanation. "Yes. You see, between each Contract 
Renewals, there is a near impenetrable barrier between our dimensions. 
It is because of the dimensional wall, that both the Earth Realm and the 
Dark World remain separate. However, it begins to weaken whenever 
the Contract needs to be renewed."
     Taron then continued. "It was sixteen years ago that Sharoka decided 
to gamble away the lives of half his ruling council in order to stop the 
two of you. He killed those members and used their own life energies 
to break through the barrier. The huge amounts of Dark World essences 
were enough to cause a small gap to appear in the Earth Realm. It was 
through this gap that Sharoka cast a spell on your mother and destroyed 
one of the fertilized eggs."
     "He killed half his council? Just to destroy one of us?" Ranma Blue 
said incredulously.
     Soren nodded. "Twenty members of the Dark World Council were 
snuffed out in an instant. Nearly all of them protested."
     "That explains it." Nodoka said thoughtfully.
     "Explains what Mom?" Ranma Red asked.
     "A week before I found out that I was pregnant, I had suddenly come 
down with a fever. My entire body ached, but what really hurt the most 
was a stinging pain in my belly. The following day, I began to get 
morning sickness. Later on, I assumed that the stinging pain was just 
part of the sickness."
     "Did you feel a sense of absolute relief the day after?" Soren asked.
     "Why yes, how did you know?"
     Taron replied, "That was the time that Kami-sama had placed the soul 
of Ranma's brother within the remaining egg. After Ranma was born, 
the soul of his brother was brought into the world also."
     "I see."
     "Now that you know what had happened sixteen years ago, I hope you 
understand why your sons must face this danger now."
     "Actually, I do understand that they must fight these demons now. 
However, I do not understand why these Dark World people have not 
tried something like this on your previous champions."
     Soren and Taron looked at each other for a long moment before the 
white-shirted immortal responded. "The reason why they have become 
so desperate as of late, is because this is their last chance."
     "What?!" Both Ranmas said.
     "When the Contract was made ten thousand years ago, Kami-sama 
had added a small 'sub-clause.' It specifically said that if the Dark 
World were unable to defeat the Earth Realm within ten thousand years, 
then the dimensional barrier would be forever sealed. After ten 
millennia, they have wasted both their efforts and power, trying to 
defeat our champions."
     "Why didn't Kami-sama make up that clause to seal them away the 
first time around?" Ranma Blue asked.
     "At the time," Soren replied, "the dimensional wall was so damaged 
that it would have been impossible for even Kami-sama to fix. During 
the Great Conflict, the deities of this world had taxed their powers to 
the limit. The Dark World had also depleted its power. It would take 
several thousand years before the space-time continuum would become 
stable enough for Kami-sama to effect permanent repairs. That is why 
he drew up the Contract in the first place. To effect temporary repairs 
and to stall for time."
     "That's right." Taron agreed. "When the Contract was being drawn up, 
Kami-sama secretly added that sub-clause into it, hoping that the Dark 
World would not notice it. For the next ten thousand years, the Contract 
has been upheld without question. However, in recent times, Sharoka had 
discovered the sub clause. Since his ancestors had signed the Contract, he 
had no choice but to follow it. Now we fear that he knows of your 
existence. He will try to stop the two of you. Most likely try to kill you."
     Nodoka became white at this statement. "I will not allow it! I have 
just gotten my family back! I will not put them in such danger! My sons 
will not be subjected to this!"
     Soren shook his head. "I'm afraid that it's not possible Mrs. 
Saotome. Your sons are the Chosen Ones. If they do not battle with the 
Dark World, then Sharoka will win by forfeit. Then the Earth will be 
doomed to slavery or destruction."
     "Can't you find another pair of twins?" Nodoka pleaded.
     Soren and Taron shook their heads, as Taron answered, "No, I'm 
afraid that there is not a pair of twins on Earth that have the right 
attributes. Ranma Red and Ranma Blue are the sole hope for Earth's 
     Nodoka looked as if she wanted to argue some more, but she then 
looked at her sons. She saw the looks of determination in their eyes. 
They were willing to sacrifice all for the safety of the world. They 
showed no outward indications of fear. They wanted to fulfill their 
obligations. It was a matter of honor. Most of all, they were ready to 
die for their loved ones. Nodoka could not help but feel proud of her 
two Ranmas. They were truly men among men.
     The matriarch of the Saotome clan took up her offspring in a teary 
hug as she cried softly. "My…(sob) sons! I have just gotten you back! I 
was …(sob) so happy that you had gotten engaged to Shampoo and Ukyo. 
Now I …(sob) learn that the weddings may not occur. I… may never see 
my grandchildren! I may lose both of you all over again! (sob)."
     The two Ranmas held back their tears as they reassured their mother.
     "Don't worry Mom!" Ranma Red declared. "We won't let that happen!"
     "Yeah! We are going to win!" Ranma Blue agreed. "We'll save the 
     The three Saotomes embraced each other for a long time before 
they finally separated. Nodoka wiped the tears from her eyes and 
addressed the immortal twins. "You will look after them?"
     "We will be watching over the both of them. You have our solemn 
     "And unlike Genma," Taron added, "we keep our word!"
     Nodoka nodded as she thanked the two.
     Soren then turned his attention on the Saotome brothers. "The two of 
you must now rejoin with the rest of the world. We are quite certain that 
your mother wishes you to go back to school and finish your education."
     Both Ranma twins became surprised at the change in subject. They 
both looked at their mother, who nodded.
     "But what about our training sessions?" Ranma Blue queried.
     "Don't worry." Soren replied. "We're already ahead of schedule! I'd 
say that the two of you will be ready two, maybe three days before the 
Contract expires."
     "We will be training you after school, so that we won't interfere with 
your daily lives." Taron added. "We'll still be looking after you, just in 
case the Dark World tries something. Until then, we bid you good night."
     In a flash, Taron and Soren disappeared, leaving the twins with their 
     Nodoka smiled at her sons as she said, "Now then you two, it's 
getting late. I want the two of you to get a good night's sleep. 
Tomorrow, the both of you will resume your classes at Furinkan."
     "But Mom…" Ranma Red began.
     Nodoka put her hand up. "No need to worry. I had already phoned the 
school while you were gone. I had told them that Ranma's twin would 
be enrolling tomorrow. I've already taken care of all the details. Now 
off to bed with you."
The next day…
     The Ranma twins decided to take a less spectacular way to get to 
school that morning. Ranma Red had decided to test the limits of his 
teleportation spell. Within an instant, the two boys found themselves 
less than a block away from the gates of the high school. As they began 
walking toward the front gates, they saw Nabiki and Akane some twenty 
meters ahead of them. 
     "Hey! Its Akane and Nabiki!" Ranma Red pointed.
     "Do you think we should see her now?" Ranma Blue wondered.
     "I don't know. Akane was pretty ticked off yesterday."
     "You're right. We'll give her some space."
     Up ahead Akane was in a very depressed mood. She had not gotten 
much sleep the night before. Her mind had focused on nothing but 
Ranma's departure from her home. Both of them. The fact that they were 
now going to marry Ukyo and Shampoo had put her into a deeper funk.
     <I can't believe that they don't…l-love…No! I won't say it! They're 
just a couple of jerks anyway! Why should I care if they're not my 
fiancée? They did nothing but insult me and call me uncute! They didn't 
even say goodbye last night! I should be glad that they're gone!>
     Despite her denials, Akane knew that she was only fooling herself. 
She had gotten used to Ranma over the last several months and seeing 
him as twins had shocked her. What became the biggest blows to her 
already fragile feelings was the announcement of her engagement being 
invalidated and the new engagements of both twins to her biggest rivals. 
Since then, Akane had not been the same. She had spent a near-
sleepless night replaying yesterday's events in her mind. Every time she 
imagined Ranma in the arms of Ukyo or Shampoo, her mood would 
darken. She would never admit to anyone that it was jealousy, but she 
couldn't stand the thought that both Ranmas were now showing 
affection toward those other girls, rather than to her. They also seemed 
to have changed personalities. They were more enthusiastic with their 
new engagements and they were less cocky than the single Ranma had 
been. Akane sighed sadly as she trudged her way to the school.
     Nabiki looked at her sister with concern. Like her sister Kasumi, she 
knew that Akane had more feelings toward Ranma than she would admit 
to. Last night, she had heard her sister quietly sobbing and this morning; 
Akane's eyes were still puffy and red. Nabiki shook her head. <How 
could Ranma do this to her? I thought he cared about her!> Nabiki 
shook her head. Things were not going to be easy for the next few days. 
With Ranma no longer living in the dojo, her sister was heading towards 
a roller coaster of angry, sad and hurt feelings. Her father was no 
better. After the twins had departed with their mother, Soun Tendo had 
become a veritable waterfall of tears. He would either shout at Genma 
about the situation being his fault or he would bawl his head off over 
the schools never being joined. He still considered Ranma's father as 
his best friend, but the recent events had strained their relationship. 
Genma was still staying at the dojo and playing shogi with her father, 
but they lacked the usual happy-go-lucky spark that they always carried.
     With Ranma gone, Nabiki knew that the family would be going 
downhill soon. 
     At the gates of Furinkan High, students were busy milling about their 
business as they headed toward their classes. Several students turned 
their heads as they saw Nabiki and Akane enter through the gates. 
Ordinarily, this would not be an uncommon sight, but what the students 
did notice was that Ranma was not at Akane's side. This sparked the 
interest of several boys and they began wondering where Saotome was. 
Then another surprise came walking through the gates.
     Ukyo Kuonji looked like a candidate for Teen Magazine as she 
strode proudly into the schoolyard in a girl's school uniform. Of course, 
she still had that giant spatula strapped to her back, but the overall effect 
was just as staggering as the last time she was wearing such an outfit. 
Several of the boys began rushing toward her, trying to ask her for 
dates, but the okonomiyaki chef smiled and politely turned them down, 
explaining to them that she was only waiting for her Ran-chan. 
     By this time, the crowds had attracted the attention of Furikan's 
poetry-spouting kendoist. Tatewaki Kuno stood proudly with his 
bokken at his side as he gazed on both Akane and Ukyo. "Ah…the gods 
must truly smile on me to deliver these beauties into my presence. The 
lovely Akane once again graces these hallowed grounds, in which my 
holy feet do tread. The treacherous Ranma Saotome is not in her 
presence! Could I dare hope that his disappearance is permanent? My 
beloved had escaped his vile presence? To dream such a wonderful 
dream! And look! The sweet Ukyo Kuonji has once again donned the 
garb of feminine ways! Surely she seeks to attract the attention and gain 
the affection of the Great Blue Thunder of Furinkan High! I must 
reward the both of them!"
     Kuno strutted out toward the girls with bouquets of red roses in his 
     Akane and Nabiki were a little more than surprised at seeing Ukyo in 
girls clothing. They looked at her with a confused look. Ukyo gazed 
first at Nabiki and then to her sister. Although Akane was putting up a 
face of indifference, the Kuonji girl could tell that she was jealous of 
her engagement to one of the Ranma twins. 
     "Hey Ukyo! What's with the outfit?" Nabiki asked.
     The brown-haired girl smiled as she joyfully replied, "Ran-chan told 
me before that I looked cute in this outfit. Besides, I am Ran-chan's 
fiancée. If wearing this outfit makes him happy, then I'm happy!"
     Akane was about to say something awful when Kuno arrived.
     "Akane Tendo! Ukyo Kuonji! Such beauty! Such grace! Surely the 
two of you must be overjoyed now that Tatewaki Kuno is here to reward 
your efforts to woo me!"
     "What are you talking about?!" Both replied with annoyance.
     Kuno was taken aback and his face showed confusion. "Why, the fact 
that you have escaped the clutches of the evil Ranma Saotome and have 
come here dressed in feminine garb to please me, of course! Why else 
would you be here?" Kuno thrust out the bouquets in front of him. 
Akane sighed as she held forehead and shook her head sadly. She gave 
off a long and tired sigh.
     Ukyo unslung her spatula and said in an irritated voice, "Listen here 
you jackass! I'm dressed like this because I'm waiting to see my Ran-
chan! Going out with you would be as appealing as eating year-old 
     Kuno became shocked at her rejection to his overtures. "What's 
this? You do not accept my tokens of affection? Surely you must be 
under the spell of the vile demon Ranma Saotome! I will free both of 
you from his disgusting influence, should he have the courage to show 
his face here!"
     Ukyo prepared to hit Kuno upside the head with her spatula. "How 
dare you call my fiancée that! Take it back!"
     It was then that someone from the crowds behind them shouted, 
     Ranma Red and Ranma Blue were running towards the school at an 
easy pace. As they neared the gates, Ranma Red turned to his brother 
and asked, "Well, this is it! You ready?"
     Ranma Blue nodded and smiled. "We may as well make a big splash! 
Look out Furinkan! Here come Ranma times two!"
     The twins leapt into the air and landed in the middle of the crowd. 
Everyone within visual distance did a collective facefault, with the 
exception of Ukyo, Akane and Nabiki. Kuno's jaw dropped to the 
     "What cruel joke is this?!" Kuno said as he raised his bokken at the 
two Ranmas. "It is punishment enough to have one Ranma Saotome! 
Now am I cursed to seeing double?!"
     Both Ranmas stood with their arms folded and each had a look of 
contempt as they stared at the kendoist.
     "Kuno, the real punishment is seeing your stupid face every day!" 
Ranma Red said.
     "The fact that we BOTH have to see it is even worse!" Ranma Blue 
     Meanwhile, the crowd began gossiping among themselves.
     "Do you see what I see?"
     "Two Ranmas!"
     "Maybe they're twins!"
     "Maybe Ranma got cloned!"
     "Does this mean that Akane has two fiancées?"
     "That would be some wedding!"
     "Aw man! As if one Ranma wasn't trouble enough!"
     "I wonder if Akane's willing to share?"
     "Yeah, maybe she can have one Ranma and the rest of us have the 
     "Which one is the real Ranma?"
     The crowd stopped in their gossiping as they turned their attention to 
     Kuno took a stance as he faced his twin adversaries. "Whichever of 
you is the real Saotome, step forward so that I may give you the beating 
that you so richly deserve!"
     "What are you talking about Kuno?" Ranma Blue said with annoyance.
     "You dare to mock me by having someone else impersonate you?! 
     "I don't know Kuno. How many kinds are there?" Ranma Blue replied.
     "SILENCE KNAVES! I will smite the both of you and save the 
beautiful Akane and Ukyo from your horrid presence!"
     As soon as Ranma Blue heard Ukyo's name, his eyes narrowed. 
"WHAT did you say?"
     "Once I have dispensed with thee, I shall be the sole recipient of the 
affections of Akane Tendo, the pig-tailed girl AND Ukyo Kuonji!"
     "Okay, that's it. Badmouthing me and my brother is one thing!" 
Ranma Blue took a fighting stance. "But get this straight! UKYO IS MY 
     Ukyo was ecstatic at Ranma Blue's declaration. The crowd gasped as 
they heard those words.
     "Did you hear that? They're brothers!"
     "I didn't know Saotome had a twin brother!"
     "He's engaged to Ukyo!"
     "Where does that leave Akane?"
     "I guess the other one is engaged to Akane."
     Akane was shocked to hear those words from Ranma Blue's lips. She 
began having a flashback to the time when Ranma had said those words 
during that match with the infamous Golden Pair. At the time, he had 
been referring to her. She looked at the blue-shirted Ranma. His 
expression was very intense. Deep inside her, Akane knew that he 
meant every word. This made her heart sink even lower.
     Ranma Blue addressed to his brother without taking his eyes off 
Kuno, "Stay out of this! It's personal!"
     Ranma Red nodded as he took a few steps back. "No problem bro. 
This shouldn't take long."
     Kuno charged at Ranma Blue, intending to strike him down quickly, 
then do the same with his brother. "DIE YOU DUAL DEMONS FROM 
     Ranma Blue suddenly moved forward and was inside Kuno's defense 
in less than a microsecond. He then let loose with his accelerated 
Chestnut Fist.
     One thousand twenty-two punches went by in the blink of an eye. 
Kuno was severely pummeled before his body had registered the first 
hit. Ranma Blue ended the move in an uppercut, which sent Kuno flying 
back twenty feet. The kendoist fell down in a crumpled heap. As he 
faded into unconsciousness, he mumbled, "That didn't hurt you know."
     Ranma Blue relaxed into a casual stance as Ukyo ran up to him and 
began hugging him. "Ran-chan!" 
     He smiled at his fiancée and returned the embrace. "Hey Ucchan! I 
like what you're wearing." Ukyo blushed for a moment before planting a 
deep kiss on his lips, which he responded to enthusiastically. This 
resulted in mass speculation among the crowds.
     "Wow! Did you see that? He must have hit Kuno at least a thousand 
     "I didn't know Ranma could do that!"
     "Which one is Ranma and which one's the brother?"
     "That was sooo romantic. The way he said that she was his fiancée."
     "The way he defended her honor was like something out of a fairytale!"
     "Why can other guys be like that?"
     After Ranma Blue and Ukyo had broken off their kisses, they turned 
to a smiling Ranma Red. 
     "Way to go bro! Took him out in point three seconds!"
     "Not a problem!" Ranma Blue answered as he kept Ukyo by his side. 
He then looked up at the clock and noted the time. "We better get to 
     The Ranma twins headed into the building with Ukyo. Behind them, 
the crowds followed. Nabiki and Akane were soon the only ones left in 
the schoolyard. Nabiki looked at her sister with concern. Akane had a 
wistful expression on her face as she stared at the door where the happy 
couple had entered. It was all she could do not to cry in despair.
     "Class, I would like to introduce you to a new student. His name 
is…" The teacher looked down at the note in his hands, then looked at 
the two Ranmas who were standing at the front of the room. "Excuse 
me, there must be some mistake. You both can't be Ranma Saotome."
     Ranma Red and his brother turned toward the teacher and grinned. 
Ukyo giggled in her seat while Akane groaned.
     "Actually, we are." Ranma Red replied. "Both of our names are 
Ranma. We're twins. In order to avoid confusion, call me Ranma Red 
and he's Ranma Blue. We both know everything that the other knows."
     The teacher looked at the twins with a suspicious eye, then shrugged 
as he motioned for them to take a seat. The students began whispering 
among themselves as Ranma Blue took his seat next to Ukyo and gave 
her a wink. Ranma Red sat down near Akane, but made no indication in 
noticing her. Akane became even more depressed. Already, her friends 
were starting to exchange gossip about her and the twin Saotomes.
     At noon, both Ranmas decided to eat with Ukyo under the tree by the 
soccer field. A short distance away, Akane and her two friends, Yuka 
and Seiko, watched the three as they ate their lunches.
     "I can hardly believe that Ranma had a twin brother!" Yuka remarked.
     "Yeah. Did you hear what Ranma Blue had said about Ukyo this 
morning?" Seiko asked.
     "You bet! The whole school has been talking about it! He's Ukyo's 
     "I guess that means that Ranma Red is your fiancée, huh Akane?" 
Yuka asked as she turned toward the youngest Tendo girl.
     Akane became very irritated at first when she heard that statement, 
as a usual reflex action. Then she recalled the current situation. She 
sighed and took on a depressed look as she quietly answered, "He's not 
my fiancée."
     "Oh come on Akane! You say that all the time!" Seiko said with a grin.
     "Yeah!" Yuka agreed. "You guys have been fighting since Ranma 
came to school!"
     Akane was about to burst into tears, but she bravely held them back. 
"No. You don't understand! Neither one are my fiancée! Not…any more."
     "What are you saying?" Yuka inquired.
     "Are you saying that you're not engaged anymore?" Seiko added.
     Akane sniffled a little as she nodded slightly.
     "What happened?" Both girls said at the same time.
     Akane remained silent for a long time before she answered in a quiet 
voice, "Their mother… disallowed our engagement. She gave her 
blessings to two other girls when both Ranmas proposed to them."
     "What?!" Both girls yelped.
     "It's true. I… was angry at the time when those two jerks announced 
that they were going to marry someone else. When… I reacted badly, 
their mother decided that I was unsuitable for either of them. She's 
already given her blessings for the new engagements."
     Both girls nodded in sympathy as they knew that Akane did have a 
short temper. She did tend to react violently to bad news. However, 
they were her friends and they tried to console her.
     "So who's Ranma Red's fiancée, if Ukyo is engaged to his brother?" 
Seiko asked.
     As if in answer to Seiko's question, a bicycle came flying into the 
schoolyard. It landed a few feet from the Ranma brothers and Ukyo. 
With incredible swiftness, a purple-haired Amazon leapt from the seat 
and promptly attached herself onto Ranma Red with one arm, while 
balancing a small takeout box in the other. Ranma Red smiled as he put 
one arm around Shampoo's shapely waist and kissed her. Ranma Blue 
and Ukyo smiled at the pair.
     Seiko and Yuka did a huge facefault as they witnessed the display. 
They turned their heads toward Akane. Akane was clearly having 
difficulty keeping a straight face. She bowed her head as her sniffles 
began to become louder.
     "SHE'S his fiancée?!" Yuka gasped. 
     Akane barely nodded.
     The two girls looked at the two happy couples in front of them, then 
looked at the sobbing, shorthaired girl beside them. Giving each other a 
nod, they began trying to console the distraught Akane Tendo.
     "Airen! Shampoo make delicious lunch for you!" Shampoo bubbled 
as she handed her future husband the takeout box.
     Ranma Blue and Ukyo were already eating the okonomiyaki that she 
had prepared that morning. They were about to offer some to Ranma 
Red, but saw it was unnecessary when Shampoo showed up.
     "Better watch out for any mushrooms bro!" Ranma Blue joked as he 
recalled the incident of the magic mushrooms.
     Ranma Red punched his sibling lightly in the shoulder as he took a 
pork bun and bit into it. "Naw! Shampoo wouldn't do that!" He looked at 
his fiancée with a mischievous smile and gleam in his eye.
     Shampoo smiled as she blushed. "Shampoo no do that! Shampoo 
promised no more potions! Ranma Red already loves Shampoo! No 
need to drug Airen!"
     The twins and Shampoo laughed at the inside joke. Ukyo was bit 
confused, but decided not to ask.
     "Hey Red! I just remembered. What are you going to do about 
Mousse? He's not going to take this lying down!"
     "Nothing Mousse can do about it!" Shampoo replied. "Ranma Red 
loves Shampoo. Shampoo loves Ranma, not Mousse! He no beat her! 
Ranma Red beat her twice! Is law!"
     Ranma Red hugged the Amazon closer, then sighed. "Sorry darling. 
But I'm afraid that Amazon Laws don't mean much to him! As soon as 
he hears about this, he more than likely going to attack me!"
     "Hmpf! Then Shampoo will tell him once and for all that Shampoo 
no love him! Never want to marry him, even if Ranma Red no beat her!"
     "I hate to say this, but I don't think that's going to work." Ranma Blue 
     "That's right Sugar!" Ukyo added. "You've been telling him to take a 
hike since you were both three. If he hasn't got it through his head yet, 
then I don't think telling him now is going to make a difference!"
     Ranma Red became silent as he pondered the situation. He then 
suddenly became inspired. "I got it!"
     The others looked at him. "What?!" They all said.
     Ranma Red turned to his fiancée and asked, "Sweetheart, do you still 
have your book of Amazon Tribal Law?"
     Shampoo nodded as she took it out and handed it to him. The red-
shirted martial artist held it in one palm and then placed his other palm 
on the top cover. He began concentrating his ki and invoked a small 
spell, which caused the book to glow with an eerie red light. The two 
girls looked with wide-eyed expressions, while the other twin simply 
smiled as he comprehended his brother's plan.
     A minute later, the light faded and Ranma Red gazed at his love's 
eyes with a warm smile. "Shampoo, I have now memorized every law of 
your tribe and I found something that should get Mousse off your case 
for good."
     "Really? How?" Shampoo asked.
     Ranma Red took out a piece of paper and pen. He began writing in 
fluent Chinese as the rest of them looked on.
     "When Ranma know how to write Chinese?" Shampoo asked in 
     Ranma Red smiled as he replied in Mandarin, <"I used a simple 
comprehension spell when I scanned your book. Soren taught me this 
     Shampoo's eyes widened even further, along with Ukyo's. She then 
began to read the message that her beau was writing. She gasped as she 
realized what he was writing. <"Aiya! Do you know what you are 
     Ranma Red nodded. <"This is the only way I can think of to get him 
to give you up!">
     <"But what if you…">
     <"Shampoo, do you love me?">
     <"Yes…"> Shampoo answered uneasily, not sure what he was getting at.
     <"Do you trust me?">
     <"Then let me do this. I'll admit there is a little risk, but it's the only 
way I could find to make Mousse back off."> Ranma Red finished his 
note and handed it to Shampoo. Giving her a long and passionate kiss, 
he then told her, "Give this to him and tell him to meet me at the soccer 
field. Make sure that your great-grandmother is with you."
     Shampoo took the note. She gazed longingly into Ranma Red's eyes 
and saw the confidence in their blue depths. She then gave him a small 
peck on the cheek, mounted her bicycle and pedaled off.
     Ranma Blue and Ukyo looked at Ranma Red. Although Ranma Blue 
already knew what his brother had in mind, he still asked, "Are you sure 
you want to do this brother?"
     His sibling nodded, a serious look on his face.
     "You what he's going to do?" Ukyo queried.
     "Yes. There's very little that either of us can keep from each other."
     "What's going to happen?"
     Ranma Red sighed as he replied, "Everything will be settled after 
     The sun began its daily descent into the horizon as the students were 
let out for the day. A large crowd of people had gathered around the 
soccer field as news of the upcoming confrontation spread. Apparently, 
no secret could be hidden from Nabiki and her spies. Nabiki and her 
cohorts were already taking wagers. The news of Akane's sudden 
availability had also caused a frenzy among the male student population. 
The young Tendo girl found herself back in the same situation as she 
was before Ranma had arrived as she was constantly attacked for dates. 
This predicament was made even worse when Kuno joined in the fray, 
although he could barely move. Ranma Blue's punches had left him in 
worse shape than Ryoga had been in. 
     Akane had gotten so angered by the day's end that she had gone in 
search of the twin Ranmas in order to start blaming them for her 
problems. When she heard that Ranma Red was going to face Mousse, 
she had gotten to the soccer field ahead of time.
     Ranma Red stood alone on the soccer field with arms crossed and 
feet spread apart, as he waited for his rival to appear. On the sidelines, 
Ranma Blue and Ukyo watched. Ranma Blue looked around for any 
signs of trouble as he used his senses to probe the crowds.
     {"Well Red. This is it."} Ranma Blue told his brother.
     {"Yeah. I was kind of hoping that this could be more private, but I 
guess nothing gets by Nabiki."} Ranma Red said.
     Ranma Blue cocked his head to one side then sent a message to his 
twin, {"Hold on! Here they come!"}
     Ranma Red nodded as he also sensed the approach of his adversary, 
his fiancée and Cologne. The crowds parted as they allowed the three to 
enter the field. Mousse casually stepped forward as Cologne and 
Shampoo waited on the sidelines, opposite to Ukyo and Ranma Blue.
     "What is the meaning of this Saotome?" Mousse held up a slip of 
paper, then tossed it at Ranma Red's feet. Since he was solely focused 
on his opponent in front of him, he did not notice Ranma Blue, who was 
standing no more than twenty feet away."
     "I would think that you would know by now." Ranma Red replied in an 
even tone. "Mousse! I challenge you to an Honor Duel in accordance to 
Amazon Tribal Law!"
     Mousse snorted as he gave the pigtailed martial artist a look of 
contempt. "Hah! You're not an Amazon! You have no right to challenge 
ME to an Honor Duel!"
     Ranma Red looked toward Cologne and began reciting from the 
book of Amazon Tribal Law. "Chapter Five, Subsection Three! 
ANYONE can challenge a member of the Joketsuzoku to an Honor 
Duel when settling a dispute of great importance! Correct?"
     Cologne nodded, impressed at Ranma Red's knowledge of their 
ways. "Correct, son-in-law. The dispute may include family honor, 
business transactions or… marriage laws."
     Ranma Red turned back toward Mousse and declared, "I challenge 
you! We are going to settle WHO is going to marry Shampoo!"
     "WHAT?!" The myopic hidden weapons-master gasped.
     Ranma Red turned back toward Cologne and began reciting again, 
"Chapter Three. Subsection One! In the event that an outsider defeats an 
Amazon, and if that outsider is a woman, the Amazon must give the Kiss 
of Death and kill without delay! However, if that outsider is a man, she 
must give him the Kiss of Marriage and make him her husband! Correct?"
     "Correct, son-in-law!"
     "Cologne. As a matriarch of the Joketsuzoku, you are the highest 
authority of Amazon Law here! Do you acknowledge my defeat of 
Shampoo? Am I therefore obliged to marry her?"
     "I WON"T ALLOW IT!" Mousse threw forth his arms and a barrage 
of daggers and shurikens was launched at Ranma Red. Ranma Red had 
been expecting this reaction. Casually turning his head, he raised an arm 
and began using his new levitation skills.
     The projectiles suddenly stopped in midair, hung there for a 
moment, then reversed their direction back toward Mousse at twice 
their original speed. Mousse screamed as he found himself the target 
of his own weapons. He found himself pinned to the wall behind him as
his daggers and throwing stars caught the edges of his robe and pants. 
Five daggers pinned down his right arm. Another five had caught his left 
arm. Each leg was pinned by three shurikens and four daggers each. 
Mousse was too shocked to speak. The crowd gasped as they had 
witnessed the impossible.
     Ranma Red glared at Mousse and said in a firm tone, "I'M NOT 
FINISHED!" He then turned back to Cologne and continued his recital, 
"Chapter Two. Subsection Four! If a male member of the village wishes 
to marry an Amazon, he must first get either her consent, or defeat her 
after challenging her in a Marriage Duel! Correct?"
     "Correct, son-in-law!"
     Ranma Red turned back and walked toward Mousse, who was now 
hanging from the wall like a volunteer for a knife-throwing act. "YOU 
HAVE DONE NEITHER! By rights, I am the only one eligible to 
become Shampoo's husband!"
     "SHAMPOO IS MINE! NOT YOURS!" Mousse snarled.
     Cologne decided to approach the two antagonists. As she hopped 
toward the myopic Mousse, she gave him a hard glare. "Mousse! You 
have ignored our laws for years now in your pursuit of my great-
granddaughter! Despite the fact that she has repeatedly rejected you 
since you were three! You have also failed to challenge her formally in 
a Marriage Duel, let alone defeat her in battle! Son-law-law is well 
within his rights!"
     Ranma Red nodded as he said in a final voice, "Since you are 
unwilling to follow these laws, I am therefore challenging you to an 
Honor Duel to settle this!"
     "I WON'T ACCEPT!" Mousse said defiantly, knowing full well what 
would happen if he lost.
     "You have no choice!" Cologne declared. "To refuse an Honor Duel 
would forever disgrace our tribe! For a male member to refuse is 
punishable by DEATH! You know that!"
     Mousse gulped as he remembered that part of the law. He then said 
in a quiet voice, "All right. What are the terms of the match?"
     "Loser gives up on Shampoo. FOREVER! If I win, you will go back 
to China and never again bother Shampoo!" Ranma Red stated.
     Mousse looked at Ranma Red for a long time, trying to find some 
ulterior motive for him to be acting in this manner. All he could see 
from his hardened face, was a look of utter determination. There was 
none of the usual cocky attitude that he had before. It was a final and 
frightening visage. Mousse nodded his assent. In a flash, Cologne 
removed all the daggers and shurikens and he fell to the ground.
     As he got up Cologne hopped over towards where Shampoo was 
standing and spoke in a somber, yet controlled voice.
     "The match will begin this moment! The terms are simple! Victory 
can be achieved by knockout, submission or… DEATH! No rules. No 
time limit. Any technique can be used. No outside interference will be 
permitted! Prepare yourselves!"
     Ranma Red and Mousse faced off at twenty feet. Ranma stood in a 
ready stance as Mousse had his arms put out in front of him, with his 
sleeves held at the ready. The crowds became silent as they watched. 
     "Begin!" Cologne shouted.
     Mousse wasted no time as he charged at Ranma Red with two curved 
blades that popped out of his sleeves and began slashing at him. Ranma 
Red dodged each slash and then delivered several punches to Mousse's 
ribcage. The punches were more than what the Chinese boy had bargained 
for since Ranma Red and his brother had triple their original strength. 
As each augmented punch hit home, Mousse gasped out as he wondered 
how Ranma had gotten so strong. After the last of the punches went by, 
the near-blind martial artist tried a feint in order to make his opponent 
lower his guard. Ranma Red used his teleportation technique to 
disappear from view. The sudden disappearance of the Saotome twin 
caused Mousse to become confused for a moment. It was all that 
Ranma Red needed as he reappeared behind him and tapped him on the 
shoulder. Just as Mousse turned around, Ranma Red unloaded his 
accelerated Chestnut Fist.
     Mousse was subjected to one thousand twenty-eight rapid-fire 
punches. His blades were reduced to shattered fragments with the first 
three hundred impacts and his body received the remainder. Mousse 
had experienced the amaguriken before, but never with this kind of 
ferocity. He began seeing spots as several hundred hit him in the head. 
Ranma Red then ended the technique in an uppercut to the chin and sent 
his opponent flying.
     Ranma Red followed up with a chi attack as his opponent went 
     The bright yellow ball of chi nailed Mousse in the chest, blasting 
him further upwards.
     Ranma Red wasn't finished as he watched Mousse land on his head 
some twenty feet away. He began condensing his ki and then threw his 
fist forward.
     White energy shot forward and shaped itself into a translucent fist 
that was the size of a small car. It shot forward and slammed into 
Mousse just as he was getting up. The impact smashed him back another 
fifteen feet. The crowd gasped as they witnessed the technique.
     "Ranma must have learned some new techniques since he was gone!"
     "Look at that!"
     Mousse got up quickly, ignoring the searing in his chest. <What's 
going on? Since when could Saotome do that?!> He threw out his arms 
and launched a huge array of chains, spikes and other sharp implements 
at his foe. 
     Ranma Red simply dodged the assault by leaping high. As he reached 
a height of twenty feet, he cupped his hands forward and sent a chi blast 
downward at Mousse.
     The yellow beam of chi energy shot down and plowed into Mousse 
just as he was about to launch a second barrage. The weapons were 
blasted aside as the myopic magician's body experienced intense pain 
as the chi attack hit him in the upper body. It was only his pride that 
kept him from collapsing to his feet.
     Ranma Blue's brother landed on the ground and held out one fist as 
if he was holding a bow. He then slowly cocked his other arm back 
while red energy began to emanate from his hands. Before the startled 
eyes of the crowds, the energy became like a thing as it extended from 
his fists and took the shape of a bow and arrow. Ranma Red drew back 
the bowstring and took aim.
     Mousse's eyes widened in shock as he saw himself as the target. 
Quickly, he withdrew a metal shield from his robes and held it up, just 
as Ranma Red loosed his attack.
     "SOUL ARROW!"
     The energy arrow shot forward and blasted against Mousse's shield. 
However, to Mousse's horror, the attack was not meant to do physical 
damage. The energy surged around the metal plate and enveloped his 
body. Mousse screamed as he felt an intense numbing cold. It felt as if 
his very soul was on fire. Dropping the shield, Mousse collapsed onto 
his knees, holding himself and shivering uncontrollably. 
     Ranma Red decided that there was little point in continuing the 
match. He took a wide-legged stance with his arms ready at the sides 
and concentrated. Eerie swirls of mists, which resembled smoky 
ghosts, began to form around the twin Ranma as his body glowed
with a bright red. The swirls began to condense into his palms as he 
brought them close together and drew them back.
     Mousse groggily got to his feet and noticed the bright red light. He 
looked up and saw that Ranma Red was preparing to unleash something 
big! Although his body was screaming in pain, he refused to quit. He 
had to stop his foe before he could let loose with whatever technique 
he was about to use. Summoning up his last reserves of strength, he 
invoked his only chi attack.
     Leaping to the top of one of the field lights, Mousse spread his arms 
and dove at his foe feet first. His shoes sprouted their hidden claws as 
he aimed for Saotome's face. Unlike the last time, Mousse had recently 
revised this technique and added his own chi energy to it. His body 
became surrounded by a green aura, which took the shape of a diving 
hawk. His feet glowed the brightest as he shouted out his attack.
     Ranma Red smiled as he simply redirected his palms upwards and 
released his own counterattack!
     The combination of ki and magical energy erupted upward and took 
the shape of a huge dragon. As it roared towards Mousse, the hidden-
weapons master screamed. His chi energy dispersed one nanosecond 
before he was enveloped by the blast. There was a huge midair 
explosion as the crowd looked away. Mousse felt his body burn with 
unbearable heat, but at the same time inside his body, he felt a numbing 
cold as the attack chilled him to the very soul.
     When the attack ended, Mousse felt himself falling toward the 
ground. He landed on his back and faded into unconsciousness. Before 
he blacked out, he feebly said, "N-Not fair!"
     Cologne hopped over toward Mousse's burned and bruised body. 
Looking him over and nodding, she then turned toward the crowds and 
shouted, "The victor, Ranma Red Saotome!"
     There was a loud cheer as Shampoo ran forward and glomped onto 
her champion with tears in her eyes. Ranma Red smiled as he returned 
the embrace, then swung her around in a wide circle. His brother and 
Ukyo ran up toward them to congratulate him on his overwhelming 
victory. In the background, Akane looked at the two couples with tears 
in her eyes. She began recalling when Ranma had fought like that for 
her honor, even when she denied it. Seeing how happy the twins happy 
with her biggest rivals only made her more depressed. After watching 
the four of them for another minute, she could no longer stand the sight 
of them and began running toward home, holding her face in her hands 
as her tears started flowing uncontrollably.
     <It's not fair!> Akane thought as she blindly ran toward the Tendo 
dojo. <Ranma was my fiancée, not theirs! Not fair! Not fair! Not fair!>
     Both brothers, Ukyo and Shampoo had noticed Akane's sudden 
departure from the crowds. They all took on somber looks as they 
watched Akane's sobbing form disappear over the horizon.
     "I feel so sorry for Akane." Ukyo said.
     Shampoo was silent for a moment, then nodded. "Shampoo no really 
hate Akane. Shampoo would feel same way."
     Ranma Blue turned his head to his brother and sent a message to 
him. {"You know that we have to face her sooner or later."}
     {"I know. I really don't know what to say to her."} Ranma Red shook 
his head. He then glanced over to where Mousse was still unconscious 
and then spoke to Cologne. <"Honored elder. Would you please see to 
it that my opponent is removed from the battlefield and bind his 
wounds? I would appreciate it, if you were to inform him that he has 
lost the Honor Duel and that he must uphold the terms.">
     Cologne was slightly taken aback at hearing Ranma Red speak to her 
in fluent Chinese, but recovered. <"Very well son-in-law." > Cologne 
picked up Mousse's insensate form as easily as if she was picking up 
her great-granddaughter in her cat form. She then used her staff to bound 
away across several rooftops as she headed toward the Nekohanten.
     It was just at that time that Soren and Taron contacted the Ranma 
     {"If you two are now finished, we need you to come to the empty lot 
for your next training session."} Taron said.
     {"Be right there."} Both Ranmas replied. They quickly turned to their 
fiancées and gave them each a quick kiss after explaining that they had 
to go. Ranma Red then touched the shoulder of his brother and 
concentrated. The two vanished and left the crowd stunned. Ukyo and 
Shampoo giggled as they tried to explain what had happened.
     In a spare room above the Nekohanten, Mousse groaned as he awoke 
in a bed. His body ached with a throbbing pain each time he tried to 
move his limbs. After several attempts to sit up, he yielded to his 
body's protests and relaxed. He then saw Cologne balancing on her 
staff at the foot of the bed. His face turned into a mask of anger as he 
snarled, "What do you want? You old mummy!"
     Cologne's eyes narrowed as she replied with a hard tone, "Just this 
once, I'm going to let that one pass. I am here to tell you that you have 
lost the Honor Duel and therefore must give up all pursuit of my great-
     "Saotome cheated! He used some kind of magic on me!" Mousse 
shot up to a sitting position, then regretted it as his body screamed out 
in pain, forcing him to lie down.
     Cologne shook her head and stated, "As I recall, there were no rules 
to the fight, except that you may win by knockout, submission or death. 
Consider yourself fortunate that son-in-law had decided on the first 
option! Submitting to defeat would have further disgraced you and death 
would have been unpleasant. Furthermore, you were quite free to use 
any such weapon against him! Therefore, he was very free to use any 
technique he wished. Accept your defeat Mousse. I tended your wounds 
as a favor to my son-in-law! I was very annoyed when you continually 
pursued Shampoo without acknowledging our laws. Ranma had reminded 
me of it today! When you are well enough to travel, you will leave for 
China! I have already sent several messages to the elders of the village! 
They are expecting you! Failure to appear in the village within a month 
will be seen as a breach of the terms of the duel! We will then hunt you 
down! I will see to it that the terms are upheld!"
     "But that's…"
     "Silence!" Cologne said with a voice that could make Kami-sama 
stop and listen. "For several months, I have tolerated you and your 
pathetic attempts to win my Shampoo! No longer! Shampoo's rightful 
husband is now willing to return to the village and will most certainly 
strengthen our bloodline! Furthermore, he has proven himself as an 
honorable and great warrior! He now respects his elders. My great-
granddaughter has fallen in love with him and I am certain that the two 
of them will be happy! My Shampoo's future and happiness are my 
biggest concern! I will not allow you to jeopardize that! You will 
prepare to leave once you are able!"
     Mousse was about to voice out another protest, but Cologne had 
already hopped out of the room. He then sat fuming in silence for a 
while as he allowed his body to heal. After more than half an hour, he 
heard a noise from downstairs and after a minute, someone came up the 
stairs and entered the room. His face lit up when he saw whom it was.
     "Shampoo! You came to see me! That means you still love me!" 
Mousse once again tried to sit up but the pain of his injuries forced him 
back down.
     "No Mousse." Shampoo said with an even tone. "Shampoo come to 
say that she love Ranma, not you."
     That statement caused him greater pain than all his injuries 
combined. "No. You can't mean that!"
     "Shampoo most definitely mean it!" Shampoo said, slightly annoyed. 
"For long time, Mousse not take hint that Shampoo no want you! 
Shampoo may think of you as friend, but only because we were friends 
from child times! Shampoo want husband who not only love her, but 
respect her as well! You treat Shampoo like some prize! Always telling 
people that you are her future husband! Always chasing off other boys! 
You never listen to what Shampoo say! That was Shampoo's mistake in 
     "Huh?" Mousse was confused.
     "In beginning, Shampoo also treat Ranma like prize! Never listen to 
what he says. Always try to trick him into marrying Shampoo! Always 
fighting with Akane and Spatula… uh Ukyo all the time! Things change 
after Ghost Cat!"
     "I tried to save you!" Mousse interjected.
     "You almost caused Shampoo to be MARRIED TO GHOST CAT!" 
The Amazon stopped for a moment to collect herself, then continued in 
a calmer voice. "Ranma faced greatest fear for Shampoo! After that, 
Shampoo realized that he do care for her, but not like how Shampoo 
treat Ranma! Ranma want respect! Shampoo give him respect because 
she also want respect! No more potions! No more tricks! Just treat him 
like person! It work and now Ranma will return home with Shampoo and 
marry her!"
     "But, I treat you with respect!" Mousse said pathetically.
     "Hmpf! That no respect! That groveling! Shampoo no want husband 
who beg like dog and follow around like idiot! Shampoo tell you many 
times! Shampoo want strong and honorable husband! Ranma is like that! 
He trust Shampoo and she trust him! He listen to Shampoo, but also 
tells Shampoo when he no like something! You no do that! It always, 
'Yes Shampoo,' or 'Anything you say Shampoo!' That stupid! Want 
husband with backbone!"
     "But my darling! I've loved you since we were three! He can't love 
you as much as I do!"
     "Huh! You may believe that, but it just fantasy to you! Shampoo have 
own dream! Dream of strong husband, who love and respect Shampoo! 
Husband is strong and care for her! Respect Shampoo for being Amazon 
and not as some prize! Why you think Shampoo after Ranma for long 
time?! Shampoo know that Ranma is best chance to be happy! Now he 
want to marry her! Not just because of law, but because he love her! Not 
because she is Amazon! He love her because Shampoo is Shampoo! 
Mousse just too stubborn to admit that Shampoo never want him!"
     "No more! Shampoo tell Mousse last time to give up on her! Also 
know about letters to elders in village. Shampoo tell you to go home to 
China! Even though Shampoo marry Ranma, she still no want you dead! 
You are still a friend, but Mousse must realize that Shampoo never 
become your wife!" 
     Mousse couldn't believe that his lifelong dream would never be 
fulfilled now. He then sat up, not caring that his injuries were 
screaming in agony. He brought his knees up, crossed his arms on top 
of them and bowed his head. Soon, he was sobbing quietly as Shampoo 
looked at him with pity. She let out a sigh, shook her head and then 
quietly left the room.
     It was near nine o'clock when both Ranmas were walking back to 
their mother's house after a strenuous training session with the 
immortal twins. As they neared the house, they stopped suddenly as 
they sensed an evil presence. 
     {"You feel that?"} Ranma Blue asked.
     {"Uh huh! I'd know that freak anywhere!"} Ranma Red nodded as 
they both took a stance.
     Within an instant, a small figure appeared ten feet in front of them. 
Both Ranmas curled their lips back into a snarl as they gazed at the 
ancient and perverted master of the Anything Goes School of Martial 
     Happosai cackled as he looked the twins over. Then he smiled an evil 
smile as he addressed the two. "Well now. I see that the rumors are 
true! I have TWO heirs to the Anything Goes School of Martial Arts!"
     "In your dreams, freak!" Ranma Blue growled.
     "We're not going back!" Ranma Red added.
     "You don't have a choice!" Happosai said in a firm voice. "You will 
come back to the Tendo dojo with me and that's final!"
     Both brothers went into a new stance as they said in unison, "You 
want us? Come and get us!" After saying that, both began to power up 
their battle auras.
     Happosai's eyes widened slightly as he gazed at the level of power 
that the twins were generating. "Impressive! You two have improved 
since I last saw you! However, I am still going to have to teach the both 
of you a lesson!" With these words, Happosai began powering up his 
own aura. The darkening sky was lit up by the glowing auras as the three 
prepared to do battle.
To be continued…
     Wow! Chapter 10 was a doozy to write! I am very pleased with it and 
I am looking forward to developing many of the characters as the story 
progresses. Next chapter will be a doozy as Happosai discovers just 
how strong the Ranma twins have become. Get ready to rumble!