Dual Destinies
This disclaimer will be the death of me yet! Rumiko Takahashi knows 
what belongs to her. I know what belongs to me. The rest is all just a 
figment of my imagination.
<>: Thoughts
{""} Telepathic communication
                                  Chapter 23
                             Weathering the Storm
     "LOOK OUT RED!!!"
     Ranma Red was just barely able to dodge a huge spout of flame, in 
which the demon duck shot out of its open maw.
     "Damn! And people said that I used to shoot off my mouth!" The red-
shirted Ranma made a tuck and roll and came up in a stance beside his 
brother. The twins looked at the huge monsters that had once been their 
former rivals. Ryoga and Mousse began advancing toward them with 
murder in their eyes. The giant pig monster snorted with a vengeance as 
it brandished its umbrella weapons. The duck demon began exhaling 
small gouts of flame from its beak as it too, approached in anticipation 
for the coming battle. 
     "Well Red, any ideas?" Blue asked.
     "Not really." The other twin answered. "It's not Ryoga and Mousse's 
fault that they're being controlled by those two demons, even though 
they were stupid enough to accept the Mark of a God!"
     "Those WEREN'T the Marks of a God! Whatever they were, those 
symbols did something to them that amplified their Jusenkyo curses 
and put them under the control of those demon women!"
     "Big problem then."
     "Right. We can't fight them like we did with Arcodos and Zuruka! 
We can't hurt them!"
     "Yeah, but it looks like they don't have any problem with HURTING 
     Just then, Demon Ryoga pointed one of his weapons at the twins and 
the tip opened up to launch a barrage of wicked-looking spikes. The 
Ranma twins separated from each other to dodge. The projectiles 
whizzed by and impacted against the side of the dome, exploding into 
thousands of slivers of metal that ricocheted around the area like 
     Demon Mousse then followed up the attack by sweeping one of his 
wings in an arc and launched several of his huge feathers at his prey. 
The quills flew toward Ranma Blue and his brother points first. Both 
siblings noticed that every part of each feather was metallic and had a 
nasty edge to it. Cupping their hands forward, each initiated a 
     Ranma Red released twenty fireballs of mystic energy at the 
feathers while his brother used another application of his gravity 
manipulation techniques. Half of Demon Mousse's attack was 
incinerated, while the remainder were warped and twisted apart into 
harmless fragments. It was at that moment that the two Ranmas fell to 
their knees in pain.
     On the outside of the dome, Ukyo, Shampoo and Akane watched in 
confusion and concern as they saw the twins fall in pain. Ever since the 
battle had begun, the three female martial artists had been pounding 
away at the barrier in a vain attempt to free Ranma Red and Ranma Blue. 
Ukyo and Shampoo had been repeatedly smashing their respective 
weapons against the dome wall, but the energy field stayed firm. 
Akane's mallet also proved to be ineffective in breaking through. Even 
though they could not hear what was happening within the forcefield, 
they knew that the twins were in serious pain.
     "What happened? I didn't see them get hit!" Akane asked as she 
paused in her hammering.
     "I don't know!" Ukyo replied as her giant spatula rebounded off the 
barrier. "Something's wrong!"
     "Aiya! Think about later! Must get Airen and brother OUT!" Shampoo 
began redoubling her efforts and began smashing against the energy 
wall frantically. Her bonbori made a rapid and furious beat as she 
continued her ministrations to the dome.
     Inside the dome, both Ranmas forced themselves to stand. Ryoga 
and Mousse continued advancing, then stopped suddenly. The two 
monsters looked up at their masters, one of whom was waving her hand 
in a silent order to stand and do nothing. Both demons grunted with 
disappointment as they waited for their opponents to collect themselves. 
     "What happened?" Ranma Red asked of his brother.
     "I don't know Red! Just after I finished my move, I felt as if I was on 
fire! I feel… weaker now."
     Looking up at where Katoka and Makana's astral forms were floating 
above them. The Dark Worlders gave them evil smiles as the black-
robed one spoke.
     "Having a little trouble Chosen Ones?" Makana sneered. "Could it be 
that you've just experienced what it is like to be fighting in a Leech 
     "What?" Both Ranmas exclaimed.
     "Yes." Katoka nodded. "It is one of our most potent of spells. It is so 
draining that we can only cast it once every millenium or so. Right now, 
with the interdimensional barrier still in effect, we couldn't cast it by 
ourselves from the Realm of Infinity."
     "That is why we have your rivals to thank for your current situation! 
Their hatred for the two of you qualified them to wear the Demon 
     "Demon Mark!?" Ranma Blue repeated.
     "Yes! Those pathetic fools thought they had gotten that silly Mark of 
a God. In actuality, the Demon Mark amplifies all negative feelings, 
ESPECIALLY hatred and anger!"
     "When mystic, elemental or chi power is used against it, the mark 
absorbs it. When the energy levels reach a certain point, the mark uses 
all that power to trigger the transformation. We also modified the 
marks so that they would keep on absorbing your energies even after 
the transformation!"
     Katoka's smile became even more malicious. "The energies you 
expended while fighting our unwitting servants was enough to cause the 
transformation and there was still plenty of power left over for us to 
utilize to create the dome!"
     "You do realize that the dome will drain any and all power that is 
used within it to strengthen its integrity. That last attack you used had 
just doubled the strength of the barrier! And just remember! Our servants 
are still siphoning off power from you whether you fight them or not!"
     "My sister and I feel that leaving you alone would take far too long 
to drain you, so …" Katoka gestured to their minions and said, 
"Mousse! Ryoga! I REPEAT! KILL! "
     The two monsters rushed toward the twins and slashed at them with 
weapons and claws. Both Ranmas leapt out of the way as they tried to 
formulate their battle plans.
     {"We got problems! I think they're telling us the truth about the 
Leech Dome and those monsters siphoning off our power!"}
     Ranma Blue nodded. Already he could feel his massive stores of 
elemental and chi energy starting to ebb. {"So we can't use our powers 
too much! Fighting Mousse and Ryoga while they're like that will just 
drain us even faster!"}
     {"I've also found out something else!"}
     {"What's that?"} 
     {"I tried to draw on more mystic energy from the spiritual fields 
around us and… I can't get through the dome! That forcefield is 
blocking my every attempt!"}
     Ranma Blue decided to experiment as he tried to draw upon nature's 
power. The air around him had very little to spare since the majority 
was being drained by the dome. He then tried to draw up power from 
the ground, but that also met with negligible success. Apparently, the 
dome did not stop at ground level.
     {"No good here too! We're in trouble and…LOOK OUT!"}
     Ranma Red had his attention on his brother and was caught unawares. 
Mousse had snuck up from behind and had the Ranma brother in the 
grip of his right hand. The monstrosity that was once the master of 
Hidden Weapons began to squeeze. Despite his new levels of strength 
and toughness, Ranma Red began to hear his ribcage creak and strain 
under the pressure.
     The magic-using Ranma struggled to free himself, but the inhumanely 
strong Mousse continued to close his fist even tighter, threatening to 
crush him to a bloody pulp. After enduring his grip for what seemed to 
be an eternity, Ranma Red finally freed one of his arms to try a desperate 
     The beam of chi energy nailed Mousse right between the eyes. 
Although the monster did not feel any pain and absorbed the attack, the 
bright flash of light had startled him. Apparently, Mousse still retained 
some of his failings as a human, such as his sensitivity to bright light. 
Howling in surprise, the demon duck threw Ranma Red toward the 
other side of the dome.
     Ranma Red was relieved to be free of Mousse's grip, but soon 
regretted it when he impacted with the forcefield. The former Saotome 
screamed in agony as he struck the wall and his body flared up. He also 
felt more of his precious stores of energy drain away into the wall. It 
seems that direct contact with the Leech Dome would also speed up the 
siphoning process. These new discoveries barely registered in his mind 
as Ranma Red slumped down to the ground. A little distance away from 
him, Demon Mousse chortled with glee as he slowly advanced on his 
helpless prey.
     Ranma Blue was also having troubles as Demon Ryoga had started 
using him for target practice. His umbrella weapons had been continually 
shooting sharp spikes at him, just after Demon Mousse had grabbed the 
other twin. Ranma Blue had found himself hard-pressed to dodge the 
deadly projectiles, and several times, he had to resort to his chi attacks 
and elemental powers to defend himself. With each usage however, he 
could feel his strength waning. It wouldn't be long before he would have 
nothing left.
     The blue bolt of elemental energy impacted heavily against the pig 
monster's head, but had little effect, mostly because the Leech Dome 
had sapped much of its power in its flight. Demon Ryoga simply shook 
its head and continued firing.
     Outside the dome, the three girls became even more frustrated as 
their efforts to break through had proven to be futile. They could only 
watch helplessly as Ranma Red and Ranma Blue were being massacred.
     "Aiya! Airen and brother in very big trouble!"
     "There must be something we can do!" Akane despaired.
     "There's nothing we can do! We can't get through and even if we 
could get in, we wouldn't stand a chance against those monsters!" Ukyo 
gave one final and angered whack at the dome with her spatula before 
turning her attention back to the battle inside the barrier.
     Katoka and Makana chuckled as the watched Ranma Blue get swatted 
against the barrier by Demon Ryoga's umbrella. The blue-shirted 
Ranma screamed as he felt more of his power being painfully sucked 
away. Since the battle had started, both Ranmas had lost nearly 60% of 
their overall power as the Leech Dome and the demonic martial artists 
took their toll. 
     "Well, it won't be long now!" Katoka chortled as she observed Ranma 
Red just barely recover in time to avoid Demon Mousse's charge.
     "Yes." Makana agreed. "Even if our servants are unable to kill them, 
their constant attacks are causing the Chosen Twins to use up their 
energies even faster! I'd say they have another five minutes!"
     "No. I'd wager a thousand human souls that it will take six minutes!"
     "It's a bet!" 
     Ranma Red had become desperate. He knew that using his powers in 
chi and magic was only speeding up the siphoning process, but he had 
little choice. Demon Mousse wasn't letting up for any reason, and the 
magic-using Ranma found himself being herded back toward his brother.
     {"Blue! We can't keep this up forever!"}
     {"I know!"} Ranma Blue responded as he just barely avoided another 
barrage of spikes and blades that were launched by his opponent. {"I 
can't draw on any power from nature while in this stupid dome!"}
     {"It's cutting me off from any magical sources too! Chi attacks 
aren't as strong and even they're getting drained!"}
     {"I can't absorb from the ground, the air is too ionized now and there 
aren't any plants here!"}
     It was then that Demon Mousse launched another barrage of his 
razor sharp feathers. Both twins were unable to evade the attack 
completely. The keen edges of the quills grazed their sides and their 
clothes became stained with their blood. Ranma Red was caught near 
the barrier and was again jolted.
     {"Arrrgh! I wish these guys would lighten up! Getting smashed 
against that barrier is painful enough without them adding to it!"} 
Ranma Red complained.
     {"Light? The barrier? THAT'S IT!!!"}
     Quickly taking a stance he then began focusing whatever remaining 
ki energy he had around him. {"Bro! Do you think you can distract them 
for a minute?"}
     {"I… guess, but what do you have in mind?"}
     {"No time to explain, just distract them any way you can! Just make 
sure they're close enough the barrier."}
     {"Why? That won't… "} Ranma Red smiled as he then realized what 
his brother was thinking of. {"I get it! Let's do it!"}
     Focusing his remaining stores of magical energies, Ranma Red 
walked forward, cupped his hands and pulled them back. The two 
demons paused for a moment as they saw the mystic power build up and 
wondered what was going on. Katoka and Makana also looked on in 
confusion. So did Akane, Shampoo and Ukyo. Then it happened as 
Ranma Red threw his hands forward.
     The huge light spell of Ranma Red erupted like a supernova. 
Everything within the dome was obscured from sight as the light 
enveloped all in its wake. The three girls had to turn their eyes away 
from the sight as the brightness of the spell became painful. Demon 
Mousse and Demon Ryoga howled in surprise as they were blinded by 
the sudden eruption of light. They backed away from the twins in their 
sudden blindness and right up near the walls of the barrier.
     When the light faded away, Ranma Red collapsed from utter 
exhaustion. As he fell face first to the ground, he moaned and said 
weakly to his sibling, "That's… it. Nothing left. It's up to you bro…" He 
then slumped into unconsciousness.
     Ranma Blue was a sight to behold. His entire body was now glowing 
with a yellow light and tiny pinpricks of gold were floating about his 
body. Above the dome, Katoka and Makana watched with interest. At 
first, they had thought that they were about to win when they saw Ranma 
Red fall, but then they began to have second thoughts when they saw 
Ranma Blue empowered with energy that he shouldn't even have.
     "What's he doing? Doesn't he realize that the Leech Dome will 
simply absorb that energy?" Makana queried.
     "A better question is where he's getting that power!" Katoka replied. 
"The dome should be preventing him from drawing from any elemental 
source!" The white-robed demoness pondered for another moment, 
then frowned as she realized his plan. "Come sister! We must leave!"
     "It seems that we did not cut off all access to elemental power when 
we created that dome!"
     "What do you…?" Makana then paled as she looked at Ranma Blue 
again. She also realized what was about to occur. Nodding to her 
partner, she and Katoka disappeared from view, leaving their servants to 
their fate.
     Ranma Blue's body flared with an intense yellow light as he prepared 
to unleash his most powerful technique to date. Ranma Red's spell had 
been a diversion to buy him some time to absorb enough energy to 
make the move effective. Since he was not expending the power, the 
dome's siphoning effect could not keep up with the constant build up.
    <I'm only going to get one shot at this!> The elemental Ranma took a 
final glance at his brother's body, then looked behind him. Motioning 
for Ukyo and the other girls to take cover, he then turned his attention 
back to Demon Ryoga and Mousse, who were just now getting their 
sight back. Now!
     Throwing his arms forward like a tuning fork, Ranma Blue let his 
attack fly.
     All the energy that he had amassed was let loose in a huge beam that 
tore into the demons and began burning away at their bodies. The 
monsters howled in rage as they were pushed back against the walls of 
the barrier. All the energy that they had absorbed during the battle, plus 
the energy leeched off by the dome, reacted with the mind-boggling 
power of Ranma Blue's attack. This caused a chain-reaction of 
unbelievable proportions. Energies began being thrown about wildly. 
Sparks and explosions became rampant as the end drew near. The dome 
tried to contain the cataclysm within it, but it was apparent that it had 
been pushed beyond its capacity. For a single moment, the world was 
silent. Then came the blast.
     The dome expanded to another fifty feet in diameter, then exploded 
like a soap bubble. Fortunately, Shampoo, Ukyo and Akane had heeded 
Ranma Blue's warning and had taken shelter in the school's main 
building. As they watched from within the front door, they were 
fascinated by what they saw.
     Just after the dome exploded, the energy within it had erupted 
straight up and created a fountain of raw fury. The mystic, elemental 
and chi energies rocketed skyward and had created a geyser that made 
Old Faithful seem like a drinking fountain. For a full minute, the 
unleashed energies lit up the sky with a multitude of colors as it soared 
into to heavens. The clouds above parted and dispersed as the geyser 
blasted away at anything in its path. Finally, the gusher finally ran out of 
steam and began to die down. When the last of the energy had faded 
away, the three girls gazed upon the aftermath.
     There was horrible crater that was more than 200 feet in diameter in 
where the front lawn of the school used to be. The depression was 
about twenty feet deep and the sides had been blasted smooth. In the 
center of the hole, Ranma Blue was sprawled alongside his brother. 
Both were exhausted and were barely conscious. Somehow, the blue-
shirted twin had managed to protect himself and his sibling from being 
destroyed by the blast. 
     At the far side of the crater, near the rim were two huge and blacked 
masses. Demon Mousse and Demon Ryoga had also survived the 
explosion, but were far worse off. The two transformed martial artists 
moaned, then tried to rise.
     The three girls became fearful as they watched the two demons 
attempt to get to their feet. Then they let out sighs of relief when the 
monsters feel face first and lapse into unconsciousness. It was at that 
time they ran out to where the twins were.
     Just as they came within ten feet of them, the female martial artists 
stopped, as they were blinded by a brief flash of white light. As it faded, 
they beheld the forms of Soren and Taron.
     The immortals crouched down near the twins and began examining 
them. As they tended to the injuries of the Masaki brothers, Ranma Red 
and Ranma Blue started to come around.
     Ranma Red's vision was blurry at first, but he was soon able to focus 
on the face of his mentor Soren and the look of concern from Shampoo, 
who was crouched beside him.
     "Did… we… win?"
     Looking over to Taron, Ukyo and Akane, who were busily tending to 
a now alert Ranma Blue, Soren smiled and replied, "No contest!"
     A while later, after introductions were made to Akane, the immortals 
repaired the worst of the injuries that the twins had gained in their 
battle. As they continued using healing spells and replenished their 
energies, the original Chosen Twins began questioning their pupils.
     "Ranma Blue. How did you defeat the Leech Dome?" Taron asked.
     "Yes. I thought that the dome cut off all sources of outside power." 
Soren added.
     Ranma Blue smirked as he replied, "I remembered Taron telling me 
that I could manipulate all aspects of the physical universe. The dome 
stopped sound but not light. It was transparent and let visible light come 
through, including sunlight. Sunlight is an elemental energy, isn't it?"
     "Correct!" Taron said with a smile. "Although I was about to teach 
you how to draw power from the sun. Looks like you learned how to do 
it on your own."
     "What about the dome Ran-chan? Wouldn't it have absorbed that too?"
     Ranma Blue nodded and said, "By itself, yeah. But I also noticed that 
Ryoga and Mousse were toying with us and draining our power slowly. 
With that kind of power, they should have been able to suck all our 
energy away in an instant. I reasoned that they must have an upper limit 
as to how fast they could siphon our energies. The same thing goes for 
the dome. If it was really so powerful, then it should have been able to 
drain us instantly. Instead, those two demon ladies trapped us in the 
dome and made Mousse and Ryoga fight us to get us to use up our 
energies gradually, instead of all at once. When I smashed them against 
the barrier, the energies inside them plus my Sunfire Beam must have 
overloaded the dome and blew it up!"
     "You took a very big gamble." Taron said solemnly.
     "Yeah, well I didn't have any other options. Ryoga and Mousse didn't 
give me any choice!"
     "Speaking of Mousse and Ryoga… " Ranma Red pointed to the still 
forms of the two demons. "Is there any way we can change them back? I 
mean, we know how to reverse curses now."
     Looking at the two monsters, Taron and Soren used their senses to 
scan them. Both immortals frowned and shook their heads as Taron 
replied in a heavy voice. "No. I'm afraid that the transformation was… 
     "WHAT?!" Ranma Red and the others replied.
     Soren sighed as he began explaining. "When a person receives a 
curse, it his or her unwillingness to ACCEPT it that makes it possible 
for a cure. The cursed individual will readily accept the counterspell or 
elemental cure to reverse his or her condition. It is that psychological 
and metaphysical attitude that makes the cure effective. Curses affect a 
person on a mental and spiritual level, as well as the physical level."
     "So what that have to do with Ryoga or Mousse?" Shampoo inquired.
     "Ryoga and Mousse had ACCEPTED the Mark of the Demon!" Taron 
replied. "Even though they didn't know what they were getting, their 
anger and lust for vengeance had caused a strong bond to form between 
the Mark and their very souls. Makana and Katoka strengthened that 
bond. The energies they absorbed had triggered their transformation, 
and I'm afraid that when they were smashed against the barrier, the 
overload had pushed their metamorphosis to… irreversible levels."
     Ranma Blue became shocked at the implication that he was 
indirectly responsible for Ryoga and Mousse's current state. "I… I… 
didn't know this would happen! I only…"
     "No Ranma Blue." Soren cut in. "It wasn't your fault! You were acting 
in pure self-defense and you took the only option available to you. The 
only people that Ryoga and Mousse have to blame are themselves! They 
were so driven by hatred that they failed to consider the consequences 
of their actions."
     "Just like before at Jusenkyo. " Taron added. "Ryoga was always 
blaming you for his curse, even though it was HIS decision to follow 
you to China. It was his fault that he didn't show up on time for the duel 
and what occurred afterward was an unfortunate accident. Just like now."
     "We all make our own decisions and choose our own paths. Ryoga 
and Mousse had made their decision to dwell on the past. Don't blame 
     "So there's nothing we can do for them?" Ranma Red asked. "How 
about altering their bodies so they will look the same as before? You 
did that with my cursed half by changing it into a boy."
     "That won't work since there isn't anything left of the original 
Mousse and Ryoga to use as a blueprint." Taron declared. "When we 
separated the two of you, we just used the uncursed half as a template 
to create the other twin. The Demon Metamorphosis had totally altered 
their bodies beyond recognition. Their genetic structures are different 
from before and without knowing the original sequences, we would just 
be adding to the problem by guessing. I'm afraid that they're stuck like 
that. The only thing that they will have retained are their minds, now that 
Katoka and Makana aren't controlling them anymore."
     It was at that point that Demon Ryoga and Demon Mousse came 
around. The immortals took battle stances since they knew their 
students were in no shape to fight. Shampoo, Ukyo and Akane also took 
up stances as they prepared to face whatever threats that came their way.
     The two monsters shook their heads to clear their dizziness. It was 
then that their faces contorted into what could be described at utter 
shock. Looking at each other, then at themselves, the two demons were 
silent for a moment, then let loose with inhuman howls as the 
realization of what they had become sunk in. They turned toward the 
Masaki twins in a red fury and began to advance toward them.
     It at then that Akane and Shampoo stepped forward and stood 
between the demons and they prey. They held out their arms and 
shouted out.
     "Mousse! You no kill Ranma! Shampoo no let you! You kill Ranma 
     "Ryoga! I know you're in there somewhere! I know that you were P-
chan! I didn't like being lied to, but I can forgive you for that! If you do 
     Both demons stopped in their tracks as these words were being said 
to them. As they looked upon the ones that they once loved, they could 
tell that they meant every word. They could see it in their eyes. Then 
the two girls delivered their ultimatums.
     "You want to kill Ranma? THEN YOU KILL SHAMPOO TOO! NO 
PLEASE STOP!" Tears flowed down her cheeks as she waited for 
Mousse to respond.
welling up in her eyes as she finished in a barely audible voice. "Don't 
do this!"
     For one brief moment, it seemed as if the two demons were going to 
go through with their attack, but then they crouched down on their 
haunches. All anger within them drained away, and was then replaced 
with depression. They realized that Akane and Shampoo were right. 
Killing the twins would not serve any purpose other than add to the void 
in their once-human hearts. The girls had made their decision to stand 
by the Masaki twins, just as they had chosen to take the Mark of a 
Demon. For a long time, no one dared speak or make a noise. Then the 
unexpected happened.
     Mousse and Ryoga could never stand to see Akane and Shampoo cry. 
If there was anything that caused them the most pain, it was seeing 
those eyes filled with tears. They knew that they were the reason that 
Akane and Shampoo were crying and so decided to no longer be the 
cause of their tears. Looking behind them, they spotted the charred 
remnants of Demon Ryoga's umbrella weapons. They were nothing 
more than blackened rods, but they still retained enough mystical 
power to suffice. They also had the pointed blades on their tips. 
Walking slowly toward them, they each picked up an umbrella and then 
turned to face the group.
     Looking at Shampoo and Akane with pained eyes, the two demons 
held out their umbrellas with the pointed ends directed toward their 
bellies. Everyone's eyes widened as they realized what they intended to 
     "NOOOOOOO!!!! DON'T DO IT!!!" Akane and Shampoo shouted as 
they began rushing toward the demons.
     Demon Ryoga and Demon Mousse paid them no heed as they 
focused whatever energy they had left in their forms into their 
makeshift suicide blades. Each smiled a bit as they strained with vocal 
cords not meant for human speech.
     "G… g…goodbye…"
     With a single motion, each demon thrust the point of their weapon 
deep within their abdomens. There were twin explosions of magical 
energies as Ryoga and Mousse were enveloped in the blinding flash. 
When it faded away, there was nothing left, but a few wisps of smoke 
that marked the passing of the two martial artists.
     Akane and Shampoo fell to their knees in utter shock of what had 
just occurred. Then, their faces were in their hands as they began crying 
uncontrollably. Ukyo came up from behind to console them, but then 
decided that they needed to be left alone. Behind them, Soren, Taron 
and the twins also decided that Akane and Shampoo needed to be left 
with their sorrow.
     {"I never realized that things would go this far!"} Ranma Red said 
     {"Just you wait."} Taron said. {"The Contract is in two days and what 
you've experienced now was only a preview. I'm afraid that your trials 
and tribulations are only beginning."}
     {"I just hope you can weather the storm."} Soren added.
     The twins nodded silently as they continued to watch Akane and 
Shampoo. They were so distracted that neither noticed the presence of 
a shadowy figure that observed the group from the corner of a nearby 
building. After a moment, the man disappeared into the darkness of the 
The Realm of Oblivion…
     "Well Katoka! It seems that we did not plan for everything!"
     "Indeed Makana! But we still have … him!" The white-robed 
demoness pointed to the sphere, which had quadrupled in size and was 
now radiating more power than ever.
     "A pity that he will not be ready until the time of the Contract 
     "It doesn't matter now sister! The Dark World will soon have the 
victory that has eluded it for ten millennia! Then nothing shall stop us!"
     The two demon women smiled and then let off a blood-curdling 
laugh that echoed throughout the void. 
To be continued…
Author's Notes
     Well, I did it! Ryoga and Mousse are dead! They have paid the 
ultimate price for their folly, and I suppose all you Mousse and Ryoga 
lovers out there are going to want to burn me at the stake! 
     Things have become far more serious as the time of the Contract 
Renewal draws near. Ranma Red and Ranma Blue have just witnessed 
two of their rivals kill themselves. Shampoo now realizes the downside 
of finally being free of Mousse, albeit in a very drastic fashion. Akane 
has just seen someone whom she thought was a friend end his life and 
I'm sure the biggest point of all is still, WHERE IS SOUN?
     I'm not telling… yet! The next chapter will deal with the aftermath of 
today's events as our party prepares to leave their usual locale of 
Nerima and head for China. I had planned to get the Soun and Genma 
issue resolved by then, but I had just gotten some new ideas and 
suggestions from readers and decided to form some new subplots 
around the main story! With two of the supporting cast now defunct, 
things are only going to get more complicated! Stay tuned!