Fighting Blind

So many disclaimers, so little time�

<>: Thoughts

<"">: Chinese language

Chapter 5

Operation Get the Groom!

"There he is Saotome!" Soun whispered as he prepared to pounce

on the unsuspecting Ranma and his companion.

Genma nodded as he too readied himself. "Right. You distract

that Amazon while I get my boy. Pay no attention to what he says.

Those Amazons have brainwashed him into thinking that he's one of


"Don't worry Saotome! Once we get your son away from those

people, we'll set him straight and he can then fulfill the pledge to

unite the schools of the Anything Goes School of Martial Arts!"

"All right. We have to get closer though." Genma then paused,

then asked his friend. "By the way Tendo. Which one of your

daughters will be engaged to?"

Soun thought for a moment and then said. "Akane! Yes! He'll

marry Akane! He's a martial artist! She's a martial artist! It's a match

made with heaven's blessings!"

Somewhere in reality, the personification of Common Sense

groaned in frustration and went off to sulk.

"All right then. It's Genma's�"

"And Soun's�"

Both men said the last part in unison. "Operation Get the


Meanwhile, Ranma and Pepper were quietly engaged in a friendly

discussion as they walked down the street. Each of them carried a

takeout box and was in good spirits when Ranma suddenly stopped

and tensed up.

Pepper noted Ranma's sudden agitation and then, she too got the

feeling that they were being followed.

<"Ranma, are you sensing something?">

Ranma nodded. <Two men� one of them is more out of shape

than the other. They're� traveling over the rooftops behind us and

are trying to� ambush us from both sides. They're about� fifty

feet away and�"> The blind martial artist paused as his sixth and

seventh sense gave him a bit of unwelcome information. <"He's



<"Pepper� my father is here and he's going to try to take me

away. I sense that he wants me for something. Probably so he could

sell me off again.">

Pepper frowned and then placed the takeout box gently to the

ground. She then readied herself for the imminent battle. She knew

about Genma from the letters that Jasmine had wrote to her and she

did not like the idea of him getting a hold of Ranma one bit. <"He's

not going to have you.">

It was then that all hell broke loose.


Ranma jumped to the side, placing the takeout box on top of a

nearby mailbox. He deftly avoided Genma's charge and retaliated

with a spin kick to the head. Genma went sprawling and the Unseen

Light martial artist used this opportunity to leap back and bring out

his battle staff.


The metal rod extended itself to its five-foot length and Ranma

assumed a ready stance with his weapon held out. As he sensed

Genma getting back to his feet, his expression became one of anger

and disgust as he faced off against the man with whom he had not

encountered for over eight years, his father.

"Ranma! Son! We're here to save you!"

"Save me?" Ranma said with contempt. "Save me from what?"

"Don't worry son!" Soun said as he faced off against Pepper.

"We'll rescue you from these evil Amazons! We know that they've

brainwashed you into thinking that you're one of them!"

"Brainwash? Evil Amazons?" Ranma turned to his father and said

in a low and deadly tone. "Just what kind of lies have you told him?"

His battle aura and ki energy began to flare as his anger increased.

He knew that Genma was not an honest person and right now, this

sounded like another one of his father's idiotic schemes. After

being engaged to a dozen different girls for food, any respect

Ranma had for his father had long since disintegrated.

"I don't know what you're talking about Ranma! I'm only trying to

do what's best for you!" Genma began to sweat a little as he looked

for an opening. He had hoped to catch his son off-guard, but it was

apparent that he had greatly underestimated the boy's skill level. The

way he was radiating his ki energy at the moment was daunting. Still,

after a lifetime of dodging responsibility for his actions, Genma

was not about to let this opportunity slip away. After eight long

years, he had finally gotten into a position in which Ranma was

separated from those Amazons. There was only that one woman to

deal with and with Soun's help, bringing Ranma to the dojo would be

a snap, right?

"Doing what's best for me huh? More like you're just doing

what's best for yourself! I don't know what you got planned and I

don't really care! I'm not going anywhere with you after what you

did to me!"

"I'm sorry son, but I'm afraid that I'm going to make you see the

error of your ways. For the sake of the Saotome School of the

Anything Goes Martial Arts! This is going to hurt me more than it

does you!" Genma got into a fighting stance.

<You got that right!> Ranma thought as he waited for Genma to

attack. <And I severely doubt that you could make me 'see' the

error of my ways.>

Meanwhile, Soun was facing off against the owner of Pepper's


"Madam, though I bear no malice against you, I must demand that

you relinquish your hold on my future son-in-law!"

"Son-in-law?" Pepper said in surprise then sarcastically replied.

"Don't tell me that his father had engaged him to your daughter, has

he?" She knew about the numerous girls whom Genma had sold

Ranma off for food. Jasmine's letters had been very detailed.

Soun nodded. "It is a matter of honor that he wed one of my

daughters and carry on the School of the Anything Goes Martial

Arts! He was promised to me before any of our children was born!

Genma and I had made a solemn vow and the boy will follow


Pepper gave Soun a glare as she replied, "Well you can't have

him. Ranma has had enough of his father's idiotic promises in which

he had no say in the matter. In any case, I have grown rather fond of

the boy and I will not let him be taken away from his family. If you

want him, then you'll have to get by me first!"

Soun charged at Pepper, hoping for a quick knockout.

Genma tried to rush at his son, thinking that he would not be able

to block his attack. He couldn't do it when he was eight and he

certainly couldn't see the attack. However, this was not to be as

Ranma's sixth sense warned him of the approaching danger and his

seventh sense was already forming the image of his father as he

aimed a high punch sweep combo. Ranma easily dodged the strikes

and delivered several quick jabs with one end of his staff. Genma's

breath was driven out of him as the staff struck him in the abdomen.

He was driven back as his son delivered a solid strike to his temple,

then followed through with a snap kick to his face. He then used a

fast nine-hit combo with kicks and staff that his father was simply

not able to avoid even he hadn't been dazed from the first attacks.

Genma staggered back as he resumed another stance. <Ow! Ow!

Ow! The boy can't be that good! He can't have that kind of skill

level, especially when he's blind! What's going on?> It was then that

Genma's eyes widened as Ranma took a different stance. It was a

stance that Genma remembered well as only one other person ever

used it. It was during the time in which Ranma was thirteen and

Genma had been trying to retrieve his son. However, a certain blind

master of the Unseen Light had prevented him from getting close to

Ranma and had given the fat martial artist a painful thrashing each

time they faced off. Despite any special technique that Genma used,

Koga would always pound the living daylights out of him.

Ranma smiled as he sensed the fear and shock in his father. Koga

had told him about his encounters with Genma and taking his

master's old battle stance was having the desired effect. He could

sense Genma's heart racing and his sweating had become a bit more

intense. His body language was also betraying him as trembled

slightly. He then decided to taunt his father to further undermine his

confidence. "Surprised Genma?" Ranma refused to call him Pop as

he felt that Genma had long since lost the right to be referred as

such. "Master Koga had taught me a lot of things in the last eight


Genma was not about to let Ranma get away with that kind of

insolence. "Ranma! You shame our family name and bring dishonor

to the School of the Anything Goes Martial Arts!" He tried a triple-

strike with his fist, followed by a high kick. "As the heir to our

family's fighting style, it is your duty to fulfill the pledge to marry a


Ranma was caught off guard from this bit of information and was

nearly hit by Genma's attacks. He quickly recovered and continued

to evade his father's punches and kicks. "What?! You engaged me

again?! What was it for this time?!"

Soun paused in his fight with Pepper when he heard this. He

turned to Genma. "Saotome� what did he just say?"

<Uh oh! Looks like he found out about them!> "Errr� Tendo!

Don't listen to him! He's been brainwashed by those wicked and

barbaric Amazons and�"


Genma was cut off as Ranma slammed him in the head with his

battle staff. The fat man staggered back as Ranma addressed his


"Listen here you sorry excuse for a human being! Nobody

badmouths my tribe and gets away with it! And for the record, I'm

thinking quite clearly!"

Genma could see that the situation was getting rapidly out of

hand. "Son, you don't know what you're saying! I'm only here to

save you from�"

"From what?! The only person I need to be saved from is you!

After all the things you've done to me, I would have to be totally

insane to go along with any stupid arrangement that you made!"

"It's not stupid! It's a matter of honor�"

"Don't make me laugh! Tell me Genma! Does the name Daijkoku

ring a bell? How about Li Zang or Shinada or the other families

whose daughters you engaged me to feed your fat stomach? Do

those names sound familiar?"

"Errr� should they?"

"Don't play dumb with me Genma! They all came by the village to

collect on those debts you owe them! They actually believed that I

would go through with those stupid engagements! Now you actually

want to uphold one of your stupid promises? WELL LEAVE ME


Genma began to sweat even more and before he knew it, Ranma

had closed the gap between them.

Soun was also having problems as his fight with Pepper was

going badly. The Amazon proved to be more formidable that he

thought and he was not in the best of shape. Every kick or punch

would be countered and it wasn't long before Soun's body began to

slow down from the constant exertion and the bruises it received.

So far, it had been normal hand to hand fighting. Pepper's speed and

agility allowed her to dance around Soun's relatively slow and

clumsy offense. He had not been training as hard as Genma had after

they had gotten away from their perverted master Happosai. It was at

that time that Pepper began demonstrating the fighting style that she

specialized in.

"Behold!" Pepper exclaimed as she took a new stance. One of her

arms was raised and with a casual flick of her wrist, she made a pair

of chopsticks appear. "The techniques of 3,000 years of Chinese

Amazon Cooking Combat!" Her battle aura glowed with a fierce

green aura.

Soun rushed at her, throwing a high punch. Amazingly though,

Pepper simply sidestepped the blow and used her chopsticks to snag

the sleeve of Soun's gi. With almost no effort whatsoever, Pepper

twisted her wrist slightly and Soun found himself flying straight up

into the air. He then crashed down on the pavement with an audible

splat. Pepper was far from finished as she threw her hand forward

and launched the pair of chopsticks at him.


The two wooden sticks suddenly glowed with a yellow light, then

exploded into a hundred chopsticks each. Soun eyes widened as they

came at him like darts. He was just barely able to dodge as the

projectiles imbedded themselves into wooden structures, concrete

and even metal streetlights and signs.

Ranma also had Genma on the ropes. No matter what technique

Genma used, Ranma's enhanced senses would give him more than

enough warning to counter and evade each attack. Ranma ducked

another high punch, then jabbed forward with a finger, just as his

father attempted a flying kick. The blind boy's digit struck a nerve

on Genma's leg and the martial artist felt his leg begin to lock up.

With a sickening feeling of d�j� vu, Genma was slammed to the

ground face-first as the Unseen Light fighter used his staff as a

lever. Several more pressure points on Genma's back rendered him


Pepper landed another blow to Soun's midsection, then followed

though with a sidekick. Soun's breath whooshed out and he

staggered back. Pepper's then threw out her hands and released a

fine mist from her fingertips.


A cloud of spices exploded forward and Soun caught a good

portion of it in his face. The effect of the mixture of hot spices was

like tear gas. His eyes burned and became watery as he began

coughing. As he raised his hands to wipe his eyes, Pepper pressed

home her advantage and launched her final attack.


As she threw her cupped hands forward, a huge stream of brown

liquid spewed forth from her palms like water coming from a high-

pressure hose. Soun was immediately drenched in the cooking

liquid and was pushed back into a wall. He slammed into the

concrete and was knocked out. His body slumped down to the

pavement in a messy and smelly puddle.

Ranma smiled as he walked up to Pepper, who happened to be

wiping her hands with a handkerchief. His enhanced senses had

already detected the ki energies that she used in her attacks.

Although some Amazon techniques were unorthodox, he had to

admit that Pepper's fighting style was effective. Bizarre yes, but


"That was neat Pepper!"

"Thank you Ranma. It is my family's fighting style. It was created

for some Amazon housewives who got into arguments with their

husbands over what to have for supper."

Ranma paused for a moment, then shrugged. "Okay� I guess that

makes sense."

Pepper smiled as she picked up the takeout boxes and started

walking. "We'll talk more about it later. For now, we have some

deliveries to make."

Ranma nodded as he picked up his own takeout box. Before

following Pepper down the street, he turned back to where Genma

was still sprawled on the ground. His brows furrowed in disgust. He

had been willing to talk things out with his father when he arrived in

Japan, but this ambush had destroyed all hope of ever coming to a

peaceful solution. His father had once again engaged him to

someone without his agreement and this time, he was bound and

determined to make Ranma take responsibility for his greedy acts.

He was actually expecting him to marry a Tendo. After meeting

Akane, Ranma shuddered at the thought of being engaged to a

violent maniac. The lies and slander that he told his friend about the

Amazons only made the blind martial artist detest his father even

more. It was at this time that Ranma came to a fateful decision. He

would no longer consider anything of Genma's to be of any value.

The Amazons had been his only family and he would not forsake

them. They had helped him deal with his blindness. They had taught

him honor and loyalty. They had given him a home and made him

what he was. Though he did wish to meet his real mother, he now

committed himself to following the ways of the Joketsuzoku.

With these thoughts, Ranma spat on his father's insensate form

and then followed Pepper down the street.

Later that night, after Pepper had closed down her restaurant, the

two of them sat with Cologne and the others to discuss their

encounter with Genma and Soun. The three girls became very

concerned when they learned that Ranma had been promised to one

of the Tendo girls. They especially didn't like the idea that he may

get engaged to Akane Tendo. The self-centered girl had already

become hostile toward them as they had been getting all the

attention during their first day at school. They didn't like her attitude

toward Ranma either. Calling him a pervert for no good reason

other than the fact that he was boy. Ridiculous!

"Stupid Panda-man make trouble for Ranma again!" Lilac said in

an irritated voice. Like everyone else in the village, she was quite

aware of the numerous fianc�es Genma had arranged for Ranma to

feed his fat stomach.

"Yes child." Cologne agreed. "However, this is not China and he

may have a bit more leverage here than back at the village."

"What do you mean great-grandmother?" Shampoo asked. "We

can just beat him up if he gets too close to Ranma, can't we?"

"What she means Shampoo�" Pepper continued for Cologne. "Is

that we don't have the help of our sister Amazons. This little defeat

was only a minor setback and I'm certain that he won't give up that

easily. I also saw that his friend had an obsessive look about him and

was just as determined to make Ranma marry one of his daughters.

We'll have to be on our guard from now on. We also must

remember that we are in Japan. We must be very careful not to get

involved with their laws."

"I can take care of myself Pepper. You don't have to do this for

me. It is my problem and I don't want any of you to get into trouble

because of me."

"No trouble Ranma!" Shampoo insisted.

"Amazons take care of each other!" Perfume said.

"Amazons no let stupid Panda-man take Ranma!" Lilac agreed.

"The girls speak for all of us." Cologne said. "You are a part of

the tribe Ranma and we're not about to lose you to some idiotic

promise that worthless slime had made in your name."

Pepper nodded enthusiastically. "Besides, I promised your

mother that you would be safe and she would have my head if

anything were to happen to you."

Ranma was overwhelmed at the way that his sister Amazons were

ready to defend him. "Thank you."

At around eleven o'clock, the three girls and Ranma went to their

rooms to sleep and prepare for school. As the building was closing

down for the night, Pepper and Cologne were sitting in the kitchen

and were sipping on some tea.

<"You realize that Genma might get the law on his side and

demand that Ranma be returned to him."> Pepper said after a long

silence. <"He is still Ranma's natural father and therefore has full

custody rights.">

Cologne considered this for a moment then shook her head. <"I

severely doubt that. If it were as simple as that, then he would have

done so long ago. According to what Koga and Ranma had told me,

Genma is a person of little or no conscience. He steals things, lies

and cheats whenever he has the opportunity. He even got Ranma

involved before Jasmine found him."> <Just like Happosai.> The

elder's eyes narrowed a bit at the thought of the pervert. <"He has

built up quite a list of petty crimes and there are many businesses

that want to get a hold of him. Also, keep in mind of all those

engagements that he had arranged. Most importantly, he was the one

that had caused Ranma to be blind in the first place by putting him

through the Neko Ken training.">

Pepper blanched when she heard this. <"The dreaded Cat Fist?">

She then paused and slowly asked. <"Does� that mean that�

Ranma� is?">

The ancient matriarch held up a hand and replied. <"No. He does

not know the Cat Fist. In a way, his accident was sort of a mixed

blessing. He may have lost his sight, but he does not have the

accompanying madness of Cat Fu. And even if he did learn it, the

trigger to the madness is to 'see' a cat. Hearing a cat isn't enough.

He can't see it, therefore no regression into a feral state.">

<"Thank goodness.">

Cologne nodded before taking another sip of her tea. <"In any

case, after all that Genma had done to the boy and the crimes that he

committed, I doubt that any court would see him fit to raise a child.

That's probably the reason why he didn't try any legal action against

us and ambushed you and Ranma during the delivery.">

The restaurant owner nodded in comprehension. For now, Ranma

would remain with them.

At the Tendo complex, two battered and beaten figures limped

and staggered into the house. A gentle-looking girl in her late teens

greeted them at the front hall.

"Hello father. Welcome home." She then got a good look at Soun

and his friend and gasped. "Oh my! What happened to you?"

Soun looked up at Kasumi. He was a sorry sight to behold. His

body was littered with bruises and he absolutely reeked of soy

sauce. His gi was stained dark brown and his hair was slick and still

dripping. His eyes were a bit glazed and he looked as if he was about

to collapse at any moment. One moment later, he did just that. His

friend Genma followed suit as the pressure points that his son used

against him made his legs give out.

Kasumi rushed toward the two of them and began tending to their

wounds. She also called out to her sisters who were currently


Somewhere in the mountainous areas near Kyoto, a lone figure

was wandering around, looking for any sign that would lead him to

Tokyo. In his mind was just one thought.

<Ranma Saotome! I swear that I'll make you pay for my

suffering! I will have my revenge!>

With this in mind, Ryoga Hibiki headed off in a direction

opposite to Tokyo. He then took a wrong step and tumbled down a

hillside. After making a painful landing in a patch of nettles, he

screamed out to the heavens.


To be continued�

Author's Notes

Well, Ranma has confronted his father after eight years and he

certainly did not approve of the pledge to unite the Schools of the

Anything Goes Martial Arts. I would say that he would especially be

against hooking up with Akane, considering her attitude toward him

and the Amazons.

You can understand why Genma has not tried to get Ranma back

by legal methods. Given his past and the treatment that he had

subjected his son to, taking the Amazons to court would have been a

bad idea. Also remember that his wife Nodoka still holds that threat

of seppeku over his head. Imagine what would happen if she were to

find out that her son was blind, not to mention the dozen or so other

engagements. We will be seeing some of these other fianc�es, as

they will learn that Ranma is no longer in the village.

I couldn't resist adding that little bit at the beginning. It was a

scene taken from Featherbrite's Tale, A Private Bet #10 and from

the Desperately Seeking Shampoo OAV. I hope that Gregg Sharpe

and Shade will appreciate it.

Chapter 6 will deal with some more hijinks at Furinkan High as

well as a confrontation between Ranma and Akane. Oh, and a certain

lost boy shows up as well.