"Renounce our name?" Both Ranmas said simultaneously.
Nodoka nodded as she explained, "Even though I do not approve of
your father's past actions, he is still the head of the family. You two are
still bound by the vow, since you are both Saotomes. If the Saotome
line were to end with you two, then there would be no reason for Soun
Tendo to force the issue. Furthermore, I too will no longer be
associated with that idiot Genma!"
"W-What do you mean?" Ranma Red asked.
"I will be filing for divorce. I will no longer share his name. I shall
resume my maiden name of Masaki. My parents were quite against my
marriage to that fool and I see now that they were right. In fact, the only
good thing that ever came from him were the two of you. He has used
you for his own ends with no regards for your opinions, feelings or
welfare. I rather suspect that he arranged the marriage with the Tendos,
so that he could live off the dojo. With your curse and the threat of
seppeku, I feel that he had no intention of ever contacting me. I thank
Soren and Taron for allowing me to meet my sons and showing me how
big a fool that man truly is. If he had wanted all those arranged
engagements, he should have come home to make certain there were
children to uphold them!"
Both Ranmas nodded as they too had come to that conclusion
before. Genma had never worked for anything in his life. Not if he
could use them to get something for free. The multiple engagements
were proof of that. Although they were not totally uncomfortable with
losing the Saotome name, they had always prided themselves of being
Ranma Saotome. Of course, that was when they were a single being.
Added to the fact that their mother was also giving up the name.
"Mom, we…" Ranma Blue started.
Nodoka held up a hand and motioned for him and his brother to
listen. "Do not worry about my well-being. I am quite well off. The
Masaki family is very wealthy, as it is descended from a noble samurai
line. That is one of the reasons that I think Genma married me. My
parents opposed the match, but I assured them that I would not let
Genma get his hands on any of my fortune. That is why I chose to live
simply. Furthermore, during the time you were in the Kami Plane, I had
contacted my parents and told them of what had happened and my plans.
They have agreed to let me take up the Masaki name again and are even
more than willing to name the two of you as heirs. You will no longer
be Ranma Blue and Ranma Red Saotome. Your new names will be
Ranma Masaki, respectively. However, I will not force the two of you
to do this. Your lives have been controlled by others long enough. I will
let you make your own decisions."
Both Ranmas looked at their mother for a long time as they
considered their options. They then looked at their fiancées and Akane,
hoping that they would give them a hint as to what to do.
Ukyo sighed and then gave Ranma Blue a smile. "Ran-chan, I never
wanted you for your name. Even if you didn't have any name to give me,
I'd still marry you. I love you!"
Shampoo nodded as she agreed. "Shampoo no care if Ranma not
Saotome! Is still Ranma! Shampoo will marry Ranma! Wo ai ni!"
Akane was a bit shocked at the whole discussion and didn't know how
to respond to this development. She had thought that her renouncement
of the engagement would be enough, but now the twins are being asked
to give up their very identities. She then shuddered as she recalled how
close she had come to losing her own.
The twins then gave each other a small smile as Ranma Red said
thoughtfully, "Ranma Masaki. You know, I like the sound of that."
Ranma Blue shrugged as he replied, "It doesn't sound too bad."
The next day at the Tendo dojo…
Soun had been pacing the house and bawling his head off for several
hours since Akane had disappeared. Kasumi had done her best to try to
calm her father down, but he had proven to be inconsolable. Genma had
tried in the beginning to get his old friend to stop, but after being
reminded that Akane had left because of the twins, he later decided that
it would be better to let Soun get it all out of his system. In any case, he
did not want the Tendo patriarch to go into that demon-head again, if he
was reminded that was Genma's fault that the twins had left the dojo in
the first place.
By the time Nabiki had gotten home from school, Soun was still
doing his impression of Niagara Falls. Shaking her head in frustration
and worry, not only for her father, but also for her missing sibling, she
decided that it was time to discuss an important matter with her older
sister. Since Akane, Ukyo and the Ranma twins had not shown that day
in class, she knew that something was up. Furthermore, on her way
home, she had noticed that the Nekohanten had closed early, with a note
that announced a massive going-out-of-business sale in a few days.
<Something big must be happening!> Nabiki thought. <If it is what I
think it is, then it's time I had a long talk with Kasumi! She's the only
one who'll listen and besides… this'll concern her as much as it does
for Akane and me! Wherever she is, I hope she's okay!>
Nabiki found her sister in the usual place, in the kitchen preparing
the evening meal. She saw that Kasumi had prepared her delicious
Sukiyaki for tonight. Sukiyaki was her father and Genma's favorite dish.
Sighing to herself, Nabiki approached her sibling and said, "Kasumi?
Can you spare a few minutes? I need to talk to you about some really
"It's about Akane, the engagement and the Nekohanten being closed,
isn't it?" Kasumi said without turning to face her.
Nabiki was taken aback. "H-how did you know?"
Kasumi turned to face her sibling and gave her a wan smile. "Nabiki,
I may act as if I'm oblivious to the outside world, but I am far from
unaware about things that happen around me. I noticed the sign on the
Nekohanten when I came home from shopping. And, it doesn't take a
genius to figure out that you're worried about Akane and the engagement.
I was worried as well, but a few minutes ago, I received a call from Mrs.
Saotome. She informed me that she and her family are coming in an hour
to speak with her husband and our father. She also told me that Akane is
"She is?!" Nabiki blurted out. "Why didn't she tell us sooner?!"
"She didn't say, but she assures us that Akane is fine and will be back
home by tonight. She also told me that the vow between our families
will finally be settled."
Nabiki let out a sigh of relief. Then she decided to get to the heart of
the discussion. "Well I'm glad that Akane is all right. Now I have to talk
to you about those other things."
"Yes. The closing of the Nekohanten and the vow to unite the schools."
"Well, I can probably guess why they're closing the Cat Café. I mean,
they got what they wanted. Ranma Red is going to marry Shampoo.
What I really wanted to talk to you about, is what are we going to do
about Akane! She was really choked up the last time I saw her and I
doubt that either Ranma will break off their new engagement and come
back to her!"
"Yes, it is a very difficult situation. However, you must admit,
Ranma and Akane have had a rough time of it these past few months.
Also, this is the first time I have ever seen Ranma eager to be engaged
to ANYONE, never mind it's not Akane. I believe that they are serious
and Akane is going to be the most hurt!"
Nabiki cocked her head in thought and let the wheels of her razor-
sharp mind turn, in her attempt to try and salvage the situation. She
frowned as she considered all the evidence. If what her spies were
telling her was accurate, the two Ranmas were head-over-heels in love
with Akane's former rivals. That fact did not sit well with the middle
Tendo daughter. She also recalled that it took an event such as this to
finally force Akane to admit her true feelings to the son of Genma
Saotome. She also remembered the desperation in her younger sister
eyes as she almost begged her to think up of a way for Ranma to return
to the dojo. However, Nabiki knew that it would have been a doomed
plan. She had noticed that the personalities of both twins had been
dramatically changed from the self-centered, arrogant and chauvinistic
Ranma that they had lived with for nearly a year.
The twins were far less egotistical than the original. They acted with
more maturity and were showing better manners. They didn't shoot off
their mouths and were polite. They didn't boast about their new abilities
and seemed to have learned humility. They were thoughtful and
extremely affectionate toward Shampoo and Ukyo. They were more
aware of what was happening around them, instead of showing
indifference. Most of all, they seemed to be in better control of their
lives. It was if Kami-sama himself had stripped Ranma to the soul,
corrected the mistakes that were made the first time around and then
duplicated him. The result was Ranma done right and doubled.
Nabiki let out a loud sigh as she said tiredly, "You're right Kasumi.
Akane doesn't stand a chance!"
Kasumi nodded as she prepared the Sukiyaki. "When you think about
it, you have to wonder how those two ever got this far in their relationship."
"I'll say! With all those boys fighting her at school and Kuno chasing
her all the time, I guess we shouldn't have been surprised to see her
ticked off when Daddy announced that one of us has to marry a total
"I will admit, Father does not have much when it comes to subtlety."
"Hey Kasumi! When Ranma came in that day, why did you agree with
me to have Akane engaged to him? I mean, no offense but I always
thought you were the dutiful daughter. As the oldest, shouldn't you have
accepted the engagement?"
Kasumi became silent for a long moment, and Nabiki began to fear
that she might have offended her. The eldest daughter of the Tendo clan
then nodded slightly as she replied, "You're right Nabiki. I should have
accepted the engagement. When I saw Ranma's curse… I panicked."
"You?!" Nabiki could scarcely believe it. She always thought that her
older sister was the icon of control.
Kasumi nodded again and said in a quiet voice, "Remember what I
said that day before Ranma arrived? That I hoped that he was older than
me?" Nabiki nodded as Kasumi continued. "When Ranma first came in
that door, I decided that it didn't matter that if he was younger than me.
He seemed nice enough and I realized that I was just having a case of
nerves. After all, we had just met him, even though one of us was
supposed to marry him. But… when I saw Ranma turn into a girl with
cold water, I got scared because I just couldn't handle things like that
the way you and Akane could."
"What do you mean?"
"Think about it. Even though I seem to always be in control, deep
inside me, I'm just as human as you are. I do get scared! Every day in
"Yes. When Mother died, I took it upon myself to take her place!
Every day I worry about what to feed the family, how to get all the
chores done on time and how to make sure that the family doesn't fall
apart! Father had never been the same since Mother died. The one time
he was truly happy was the day when the Saotomes arrived at the dojo!"
"Well yeah, but what's that got to do with your handing Ranma over
"When Ranma showed me his curse, it was so strange that it scared
me! Instead of being strong like our mother used to, I acted like a
terrified deer caught in front of the headlights of a speeding car! I just
couldn't imagine myself married to such a person. I found it far easier
to move him toward Akane and treat him as just another family member
to take care of. I didn't have your business-savvy or Akane's martial arts
training to deal with the shock. All I knew how to do was run a household."
"Kasumi… I didn't know."
"Now that I think back on it, I realize that I have been making a lot of
mistakes. Not just with that first day, but also with what happened
afterward. I was always trying to push Akane into becoming the perfect
wife for Ranma, but I didn't realize just how badly things were between
them. I had always assumed, just like our father, that every fight they
had was just another phase they were going through. I always maintain
that things would turn out all right in the end. I never truly stopped and
considered the possibility that Akane and Ranma were really having
"Come to think of it," Nabiki agreed slowly, "those two did get a
little more violent before Ranma became twins. At least Akane did."
"Exactly. We had gotten so used to their constant fighting that we
didn't see that Ranma was starting to drift from Akane. You must admit,
Akane was never any good at showing her feelings to anyone outside of
the family. Having Ranma's father and our father badger them all the
time about honor, upholding the vow and joining the schools, without
acknowledging their feelings did not help matters. In fact, I think that
their constant attempts to push them together actually did the opposite."
"Well you know Daddy. Considering other people's feelings was
never one of his virtues. I admit, I was more than a little ticked off when
he tried to get us engaged to a total stranger. He expects everything to
go the way he wants it and… well, I really didn't like it when he started
to treat Ranma like a piece of property. Not that I'm defending that jerk,
but Daddy always thought of him as just the future of the School of the
Anything Goes. He never considered any of his opinions as important,
and he would go into that demon-head whenever Ranma objected to
"Father certainly has a one-track mind. I'm afraid that Ranma's father
is no better."
"I can't believe that Daddy still thinks of him as his best friend! After
engaging Ranma to all those girls, you'd think that Daddy would have
dissolved the engagement on the spot! But no! He still wants to force
Akane and Ranma into that stupid arrangement! All for the sake of that
"Father never realized how much the engagement was hurting the
both of them! Both were being forced into a marriage, in which they
barely tolerated each other. Neither one was willing to swallow their
pride and let the other get close. The insults, fighting, misunderstandings
and rivalries were too much for them. There were so many missed
opportunities, botched matchmaking schemes and too much pressure on
them to get married when they were clearly not ready at the time. I'm
afraid that we're just as much to blame for this as well. We were just
adding fuel to the fire by telling Akane that her behavior was unladylike
or Ranma's treatment of her was inappropriate. We never really
discussed with them as to why they were always fighting. We pointed out
their mistakes, but instead of correcting them, we chided them and made
the situation worse! It's so sad that Akane has finally come to love
Ranma, but he no longer wants her."
Nabiki nodded in agreement as she recalled all the times that she had
called Akane's food as toxic and saying that she was weird by her
tomboyish ways. She also remembered her many comments towards
Ranma's problems, especially when it came to his Jusenkyo curse. <I
guess I should have realized that he was having it bad! Hell! I added to
his problems when I sold those pictures of him as a girl to Kuno!> It
was then that another thought hit her. "By the way, Kasumi. Aren't you
worried that Daddy might see this as a way to get us engaged to both of
them? I mean, it's obvious that neither one wants to marry Akane."
"I have considered it. However, I will not do it."
Nabiki stared at her older sibling in shock. She had never before
seen Kasumi even think about going against her father's wishes.
"You needn't look so surprised, sister. I consider Ranma as a good
person. He may have his faults, but he is a good catch. Any girl who
gets him would be very lucky. However, I am not the one for him. He
needs someone who not only loves him, but understands him. His
martial arts are his life, and the only one of us who was familiar with
that aspect was Akane. However, she and Ranma couldn't come to a
consensus. They couldn't stop fighting long enough to agree on anything.
That fact, plus other things is what caused their relationship to self-
destruct. Furthermore, my becoming the new fiancée would only lessen
the problem, not solve it. Granted, I will not have the same arguments,
but I would still be subjected to some of the troubles as Akane had. Ukyo
or Shampoo would resent me, and so would Kodachi. Also, you do
remember that Mr. Saotome had arranged other marriages for Ranma
that we did not know about. How long do you think it would be, before
those girls come to collect? Lastly, I don't love Ranma as a wife should.
I believe that was Father's biggest mistake. He did not take into account
Akane's feelings on the matter. He believed that she should marry Ranma
and that love would come later. When love finally came to her, it was too
late. I don't think I could handle that kind of heartbreak."
Nabiki nodded as she listened to her sister's reasons. As of late, she
had been considering what it would be like to be engaged to one of the
twins, if it came to that. Naturally of course, her father would insist, no
demand that she accept it, if Akane could not get either Ranma as a
fiancée. Since it was certain that Akane would not succeed, Nabiki had
started to consider it. She and Ranma had never gotten along very well.
In her schemes, Ranma was seen as nothing more than a terribly
convenient source of income. She had studied him, learned all of his
quirks and habits. She had prided herself on knowing Ranma better than
he knew himself. It was this advantage that she had over him, which kept
him under her thumb all this time.
Now Ranma had completely changed, both in personality and form.
He was an unknown. What Nabiki did not understand, she could not
control. If there was one thing that Nabiki hated, it was not knowing
anything about something or someone. More to the point, Nabiki now
found herself in a difficult situation. Considering how much they loved
Ukyo and Shampoo, the twins would undoubtedly become resentful at
being forced from them and engaged to another against their wills. They
might even take out their frustrations on her. Although she knew that
both Ranmas would never harm a girl, Nabiki remembered all the
heated arguments and bouts of insults between Akane and the single
Saotome. She decided that she did not want to be in that position.
As Nabiki considered what might very well be her future, she
became resentful toward her father. He had never considered once,
about how much Akane had suffered in her tumultuous relationship with
Ranma. He had always tried to push them together, when in fact, the
attempts only sent them further apart. He had maintained that every
fight they had were mere phases in their path to true love, despite
overwhelming evidence to the contrary. He never discussed with Akane
as to how she felt about the whole arrangement. All he went on about
was the future of the school! The thought of uniting the families was
what drove him. It had become an obsession. That was when Nabiki
thought about how that notion had affected the family.
He didn't support the family with their financial troubles. He didn't
have a job! How was the family going to survive when Nabiki finally
went off to college? This is supposed to be a training dojo. So where
are the students? All she ever saw her father do was play shogi with
Genma all day, and read the newspaper. Aside from groveling in front
of Happosai and perhaps sweep around the yard, he didn't do very much.
Nabiki had to deal with the family's money worries! And quite frankly,
she was getting tired of her mercenary life. It was a lonely life and she
had begun to realize of late that money wasn't going to cure her of
being alone. When all is said and done, money was just scraps of paper
and pieces of metal. They didn't compare to the warm, loving touch of
another. The feelings of togetherness. The joys of intimacy. Nabiki
couldn't even remember the last time she was with someone for
something that wasn't business related. It was hard to start a relationship,
when every boy who met her thought she was an cold-hearted bitch.
It was then that she realized a shocking fact. This was what made
Ranma resent her! She had placed the value of the yen over his feelings
and Akane's. She had both used them in various schemes to make enough
money to support the family. Although she had maintained that it was a
good cause, she could now understand as to how they viewed her.
<I guess they did see me as an ice princess! A greedy, money-hungry
bitch! No wonder they always looked down at me! I shouldn't be
surprised that no boy in school would want to ask me out. They probably
expect that I'll charge them by the hour! They'd rather get pounded by
Akane while trying to win a date than associate with me. Kami-sama! Has
my life really gotten so low? Do I really appear that way? If I get engaged
to one of the Ranmas, then he'll see this as another one of my get-rich
plans! Damn it! I don't want that anymore! It's not my fault that I have to
resort to blackmail and extortion! I have to keep our heads above water!
Why can't Daddy see that his family needs him? Why can't he get a job
or start teaching? Why can't he listen to what we have to say? Can't he
see that we're all suffering? Kasumi is stuck with taking care of us!
Akane has all of her problems! I have a reputation of being a mercenary!
He never talks to us about anything other than the engagement! All he
cares about is the stupid future of the schools! He never gave Akane a
choice and he's not going to give me or Kasumi a choice either! I hate
that promise! I hate it! I HATE IT!!!>
Kasumi's voice shook her back to reality. As Nabiki looked up at her
sister, she had what appeared to be tears that were starting to form in
"Nabiki… what's wrong?" Kasumi asked in a motherly tone.
Nabiki took her sibling in a hug and said in a quiet voice while tears
began to stream down her cheeks. "Kasumi! I'm not going to marry
Ranma either! It's time we faced Daddy and tell him that there are more
important things than uniting the Schools of the Anything Goes!"
It was Kasumi's turn to be surprised. The last time that Nabiki had
shed tears was when their mother had passed away. Since then, she had
become hardened and hid most of her pain behind a cool exterior. Of
course, she knew that Nabiki was really hurting inside. She wrapped her
arms around her younger sibling and let her cry for the first time in years.
For once, she was not even concerned that dinner was becoming burned.
One hour later, the twins, Shampoo, Ukyo, Cologne, Nodoka and
Akane arrived at the dojo. Soun brightened up as he saw his youngest
daughter walk through the door. He quickly rushed to the front and had
his child up in a hug before she could get out a 'Hi dad.' Genma was
right behind him and when he saw that the twins had returned to the
dojo, he immediately jumped to the wrong conclusion.
"Ranma my boys! I'm glad that the two of you have finally come to
your senses! After we have chosen a fiancée for the other boy, let's
hold the weddings tonight!"
"Stuff it old man! That's not the reason why we're here!" Ranma Blue
"We haven't changed our minds! And don't think that old lecher is
going to help! Last time we saw him, he couldn't beat a four-year old!"
Ranma Red agreed.
"W-what?!" Both Genma and Soun stammered as they heard this.
"That's right!" The blue-shirted Ranma said smugly. "We did Nerima
a favor! They don't have to worry about their underwear or food being
stolen for the next six months or so!"
Both men paled a bit when they realized what had happened.
"Y-Y-You beat... THE MASTER?!" Soun stammered.
"Quite handily too." Cologne replied as she smiled. "I was fortunate
to have been there to finally witness the downfall of that pervert!
Although I would like nothing better than to talk about Happi's defeat,
we have more important matters to discuss."
"Yes, well there is the matter of the engagements... " Genma began.
"Genma...." Nodoka slowly growled as she began unsheathing her
As soon as Ranma's father caught sight of his wife, he went into a
state of shock. Briefly he thought about hiding in the koi pond, but then
remembered that she knew about his curse. Gulping loudly, he backed
away to where Nabiki and Kasumi were standing.
Kasumi knew that things were starting to get tense, so she decided to
take control. "Why don't we all go inside and discuss this over a cup of
A few minutes later, there was much shouting as Soun was informed
that Akane had renounced her claim and that the twins were still not
going to uphold the vow!
"Akane! You will marry a Saotome! I will brook no disobedience! It
is a matter of honor that the Schools of the Anything Goes Martial Arts
"And what's wrong with me being able to carry on the school on my
own?" Akane shot back. "I'm a martial artist too!"
"It was intended that you and Ranma wed and carry on the Tendo line,
as well as the school! You were to sire enough children to ensure that
our legacy would continue!"
"Is that all? Is that what I am to you? Just a brood cow? I'm your
"Akane! You will not speak to me in that tone! I am only doing what
is best for you and the school! Furthermore, it is a matter of honor?"
"Don't give me that! You have just about as much honor as Ranma's
father! When Kaori Daikoku and Ukyo showed up with valid claims,
you should have dissolved the vow right there, since Mr. Saotome had
broken his promise to you! And if you really did have my best interests
at heart, then WHY didn't you tell me that Ryoga was P-chan!?"
Kasumi and Nabiki let off startled gasps as they heard of this
"W-what? How did you know?" Soun stammered out.
"Never mind how I know! What I want to know is why you let me
sleep with him? If I was supposed to be marrying someone else, then
you should have put a stop to it! Kami-sama knows that Ranma tried!"
"Well, it was a difficult situation. You had obviously taken a liking to
your new pet and I thought that Ranma would get jealous. Then there
was the matter of his oath to him."
"I don't want to hear any more of it! What you have told me now only
proves that this whole engagement wasn't for my sake or Ranma's! It's
for your own! You never asked me whether or not I wanted this
arrangement in the first place! You always kept on saying that things
will work out, even though Ranma and I were constantly at each other's
throats! You never even discussed with me about other things. When
those boys started attacking me, you didn't do a thing to help! I told you
that I needed to improve my martial arts, but you didn't take me
seriously! When Ranma arrived, you just focused on him and the stupid
engagement! You never listened to what he or I wanted to say! Our
opinions didn't matter! Well I'm through with being ignored! Just like
the twins, I'm going to take control of my life! I hereby restate that my
claim to either Saotome is renounced!"
Soun was about to let off another tirade but he then saw tears were
forming in her eyes. Sighing to himself, his expression became
saddened as he said, "Very well Akane. I had hoped that you would be
the one to carry on our legacy, but since you are against it, I will not
force you to marry them. Your sisters..."
Soun was surprised to hear those words. He even more amazed that
Kasumi had said those words. Turning to face his other daughters, he
slowly asked, "What... did... you...say?"
"I said no." Kasumi responded. "Nabiki and I have been discussing
this and we have decided that too many problems, hurt feelings and
sacrifices have been made because of the vow. We will not add to it by
getting involved. We will not marry the twins either. It's about time that
we began living as a family, and put a stop to these troubles."
"That's right Daddy!" Nabiki agreed. "You and Mr. Saotome had been
so caught up on the idea to unite the schools that you didn't realize how
much that promise was hurting both families! Ranma and his father
were eating us out of house and home! Their constant fights were
putting a strain on the repair bills! Happosai was getting us into deeper
debt and trouble with his panty and food raids! Just how long do you
think I could pay for that? All you have been doing is staying at home
and play shogi with Mr. Saotome all the time!"
Kasumi nodded as she continued, "You two were always pushing
Ranma and Akane together., despite the fact that they weren't ready yet!
You had so many silly notions that they would grow to love each other,
after they had gotten married! Love takes time, and you were rushing it!
Also, you were never there for Akane when she was hurting! I can't
count how many times I had seen her cry herself to sleep whenever
Ranma had hurt her feelings! You always assumed that their fights were
just phases they were going though! Nabiki and I were the ones to
console her. You couldn't be bothered because you were too caught up
in that vow!"
Nabiki gave Genma a withering glare. "And you, Mr. Saotome are the
worst excuse for a father that I have ever seen! Ranma is not a bargaining
chip that you can use to fill your fat belly! He's got rights and feelings
too! All you see him as is a way to get something for nothing! I'm not
proud of what I did to him over the last few months, but I don't do it out
of greed! I have to support this family and Kasumi has to keep it
together! Akane and Ranma has suffered through a lot since this whole
thing started and we don't want them to suffer any more. Nor do we want
to suffer through it either! We're not marrying anyone either!"
Now by this time, Soun would have been bawling his head off. This
time however, he didn't. Instead he had taken on a raging expression that
scared Genma even more than his usual demon-head. He simply could
not believe that his daughters were turning against him, even Kasumi.
Something inside him snapped. It began to build like a raging volcano.
Finally, after a full minute of silence, he erupted.
"YOU WILL MARRY THE SAOTOMES OR I WILL DISOWN ALL
Everyone in the room were struck dumb with shock. Never had they
seen Soun explode with such rage. They had seen him in severe
emotional distress before, but this went beyond anything they had
witnessed before. Genma was the most affected. He couldn't believe
that his long-time friend was capable of such an outburst. It scared him
far more than Nodoka's threat of seppeku.
Kasumi, Nabiki and Akane could only stare at their father with mixed
expressions of shock, sympathy, sadness and resignation. They had not
expected the situation to go these extremes. For many minutes, nothing
was said. Finally, Kasumi broke the silence with a tearful voice as she
"Goodbye... Soun Tendo."
Nabiki unsuccessfully held back her tears and said, "If...that's what you want."
"I love you... Dad, but I can't live with you any more." Akane sniffled.
The three sisters wept as they all ran up to their rooms and slammed
their doors. A minute later, the people downstairs could hear the rustle
of clothes. It was obvious that they had begun packing. Soun's expression
changed to one of regret as he realized what he had done. He had just lost
his family. If there was anything that hurt him as much as the time he lost
his wife, it was this moment. He tried to take a step forward toward the
stairs, but he found that he had no strength in his legs. His entire body
shuddered as he fell to his knees. Finally he gave in to his feelings and
began weeping quietly with his face in his eyes. It wasn't the same
waterfall of tears. It was the sobbing of a man who had been totally
broken. A man who had lost everything.
Genma started to walk over to his friend and placed his hand on
Soun's shoulder. "Tendo?"
"Get out!" Soun growled without looking up.
"What?" Genma said fearfully.
"I SAID GET OUT!!!" Soun sprang to his feet and backhanded his
former friend in the chin. Genma went flying to the floor of the dojo.
He found himself sprawled on his back with his chin throbbing in pain.
He could feel the trickle of blood forming on his lower lip as he
looked up at Soun's newly enraged face.
"THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT!!!" Soun raged as he tried to kick
Genma in the ribs. Genma barely managed to dodge the blow as he
scrambled to his feet and backed away.
"N-Now take it easy Tendo!" Genma said nervously as he scanned a
room, looking for the nearest exit.
"I've just lost my family and YOU WANT ME TO TAKE IT EASY?!"
"I SAID DIE! I CURSE THE DAY I MET YOU! I CURSE THE DAY
WE MADE THAT VOW! BUT MOST OF ALL, I CURSE YOU TO
Tendo reached behind his back and pulled out a really, really BIG
mallet and started swing at Genma's head, intent on knocking it into
orbit. As his battle aura flared and his demon-head took on gigantic
proportions, Genma knew that now was the best time to make a fast
exit. He ran toward the nearest wall and crashed through it effortlessly
(ah, the wonders of adrenaline). He then invoked the Saotome Anything
Goes Martial Arts Final Technique. He ran. Unfortunately, Soun also
knew of this maneuver and countered it with the Tendo Anything Goes
Martial Arts Final Technique. He chased him while swinging that big
mallet. Sound familiar?
As the two disappeared over the horizon, the twins and their party
could only stare at the hole in the wall.
"I always wondered where Akane had gotten that mallet." Ranma Blue
"I guess it runs in the family." Ranma Red said.
"It seems that the vow to unite the families has been rectified."
Cologne said simply.
"Yeah, well it wasn't exactly how we wanted it to end." Ukyo
"Shampoo feel sorry for Akane and sisters. They have no place to go
"I can give them a place to stay until they're ready to talk with their
father." Nodoka said as she turned to her sons. "As for the two of you. It
seems you have a choice. Since it's apparent that Soun no longer wishes
to uphold the vow, there is no need for the two of you to renounce your
"What about you Mom?" Ranma Red inquired.
"I am still intent on divorcing with Genma." She took a glance at the
hole, then added, "Provided that Soun does not make me into a widow
before then. Not that Genma did not have this coming to him for a long
"Well that's it then. We're still going to renounce our names!" Ranma
"Yeah! We don't to be associated with Genma either. Besides, we'd
like to meet your family too!"
"We can discuss more on this later." Cologne said. "Right now, we
have three very lost and sad girls to comfort."
They all nodded as they headed up the stairs.
To be continued...
Well now. Have I solved the honor issue with what you expected?
Does this mean the end of the Tendos as well as the Saotomes? Have I
given everyone a satisfactory end to the chaos?
Probably not! But I did want to explore what would happen if Kasumi
and Nabiki were to join Akane in defying their father's wishes. Kasumi
being disobedient and Nabiki regretting her mercenary life does sound
out of character, but as I said before, Rumiko Takahashi didn't really
expand on the other sisters as much as Akane so I decided to go into
their minds and make them seem more than they appeared to be. After
all, they are human.
For those of you who think I'm going off the main focus of the story,
don't worry. We'll soon be seeing more of the training, the Dark World
and the Contract Renewal soon enough. I just wanted to satisfy some of
my readers suggestions to end the honor issue. Chapter 19 will be
concerned with the aftermath of these events and a few more surprises.