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Ranma's second chance
Arrival at Furinken again!
Ranma and Ranko were walking on the fence to Furinken high, Akane and Nabiki were walking on the path next to the fence.
Ranma was partially annoyed that he even had to go to school but his mother had insisted.
The sounds of fighting could be heard in the early Autumn morning, the noise was coming from the Tendo backyard, where Ranma and Ranko are in mid-air performing various combinations of attacks.
"You're getting slow Ranko" Ranma taunted as he tagged Ranko in the shoulder.
"Yeah well your always picking on me" she stopped suddenly to say her eyes watering up.
Ranma could never see a girl cry and not do something so immediately went to comfort her.
"Ummm......c'mom Ranko I'm sorry" he tried lamely.
She suddenly ran towards him arms open, Ranma was surprised at this so left himself wide open.
Ranko was giggling all the time as she grabbed Ranma by the waist propelling them both backwards towards the pond, just before they were both about to break the surface, Ranko let go and pushed herself of Ranma's body so she would not fall into the pond.
Ranma emerged from the pond spluttering
"What'd you do that for??"
"you're ...so ....easy...to ....fool..." she replied in between laughs.
"Ranma your mother's here!" Kasumi called out from the kitchen.
With that heard Ranma rushed upstairs to his room, coming down a moment later dress in his traditional red shirt and black pants. There was nothing on him to indicate he had ever been in a fight.
He took his place by the table, seeing Ranko still grinning go upstairs to change.
"Morning mom....where's pops?" he asked with a slight bit of fear in his voice.
"Don't worry Ranma your father's just at home cleaning up"
"Anyway you seem to be settling in pretty well, so I've enrolled you and Ranko in the local school"
By now all the members of the Tendo family were present and eating.
"that's the school me and Akane go to" Nabiki said helpfully.
*I guess I would have to go to school, or I probably won't meet up with Ucchan or Ryouga, although
having to put up with Kuno family and miss Hinako is definitely a problem*
Ranko arrived in time to hear the last part of the conversation,
"Hear that Ranko we're going to school" Ranma told the redhead.
"Cool" she casually replied, after all she did have a lot of history to catch up on.
Nodoka handed them both some school bags and Kasumi gave them some packed lunched just as they were leaving.
Ranko started walking in a random direction,
"Hey Ranko the schools this way" He said pointing to the opposite direction in which she was heading.
"How would you know where the school is Ranma?" asked a suspicious Nabiki
"Ummm.....lucky guess" he said quickly *damn I mustn't slip up like that* thinking inwardly.
Even though he disliked going to school, he knew that was where most of his problems found their way to in his first life.
As they approached the school, he noticed Akane pick up her pace which soon turned from a brisk walk to an all out run.
"Hey Akane where you going?" Ranko shouted out but Akane was already too far ahead to hear her question.
"Don't worry about her this happens everyday" Nabiki said.
Ranko shrugged her shoulders and just continued walking to school.
As the three neared the school they heard shouts and screams coming from a large crowd of boys gathered at the front of the school.
Shouts such as "Akane date with me!"
Were among the words being spoken, smoke was gathering around the group of boys.
As Ranma and Ranko neared the crowd to investigate, they noticed Nabiki hurry off to class.
Ranma waited for the fight to finish and for Kuno to appear, while Ranko stared dumb folded
at the events that had just occurred.
The smoke cleared to show Akane standing amongst a number of boys all of whom wore various
combat clothing, from gi's to samurai garbs.
"Every single day" Akane said just loud enough for the pair to notice.
A boy slightly older than Akane approached from the school, he wore a traditional Samurai outfit, in one hand he carried a bokken in the other was a single rose.
"Truly they are such a boorish lot"
Before Kuno continued he noticed Ranko standing behind Akane, ignoring the presence of Ranma.
"But hark what is this beauty I see before thy eyes, it must be a goddess"
Ranma noticed Ranko blush at Kuno's complement so decided to make his move before Kuno spoke anymore of his poetry.
He walked up to Akane and whispered.
"Hey Akane who this weirdo?"
indicating to Kuno.
This did not go unnoticed to the kendoist.
"Halt vile cur who are you too be so friendly to my love the beauteous Akane Tendo"
"Hi Kuno sempai.." Akane said wearily
Ranma grinned inwardly, *same old Kuno*
Before Ranma could continue he was cut of by Kuno's voice again.
"Ah but it is only proper to give one's own name first"
"My name is Tatawaki Kuno, the undefeated star in the kendo world, my piers refer to me as the Blue Thunder of Furinken High.
There was a loud clap of thunder and lightning in the background.
No matter how many times Ranma saw the kendoists do that he was still impressed by how he timed his speeches just right.
"Well I'm Saotome Ranma" He said pretending to take the time to think up a title.
"I'm a martial artist practicing anything goes and I'm staying at the Tendo dojo"
Kuno had heard all that Ranma had said but only one part actually had an impact on his already dense skull.
*This vile cur is living under the same roof as the beauteous Akane, I cannot allow this*
"Fiend how dare you live in the same house as the beautiful Akane, I the blue thunder of Furinken high shall vanquish you!"
With that kuno charged with his bokken hacking and slashing at places where Ranma was only a moment before.
*hm..he's got about the same ability as when I first met him*
Ever since Ranko had started to teach him in the mystical arts, Ranma had now a heightened sensitivity to the world around him, being able to sense what a person was feeling and when something was going to happen. This also after much practice included how to detect changes in weather, although he was no longer cursed he still felt uncomfortable around water.
*Wow Kuno's usually never this good when he fights me* Akane thought, as she was again impressed by Ranma's ability to avoid Kuno's blurring bokken slashes.
Not really wanting to start of his first day in school wet like before, he decided that taunting Kuno could be done another time, so he quickly leapt inside the arc of his defense touching a serious of pressure points on his chest.
Kuno could not believe it, the vile cur Saotome was avoiding all his best strikes with ease. He than saw that Saotome was no longer where he last saw him, he didn't even feel it as Ranma pushed a serious of pressure points on his body causing all his muscles to lock up.
Ranma walked casually walked away from Kuno, as he was frozen in mid strike. He was not even able to mutter a curse as Ranma had frozen the muscles in his jaw as well.
"Wow that's really good Ranma" complemented the Ranko as she walked past the frozen form of Kuno.
"you gotta teach me that"
"Sure I will"
he replied as the pair walked towards school, Akane stared momentarily at Kuno then decided to go to
Many of the girls and boys who watched the match from the first floor, were either cheering or shocked into silence.
Ranma turned once more to face Kuno, pointed his hand at him then quickly pulled it back causing a small vacuum wave head towards Kuno.
Kuno of course frozen in position fell on his face but was not knocked out due to the hardness of his head from consistent poundings from Akane.
Only Ranko and Akane noticed this, Akane did not even believe what he had just done was even possible.
"Geez Ranma don't you think your over doing it, I mean you've only just met the guy"
"Don't worry Ranko, Kuno's so dense a fall like that ain't gonna hurt him"
The two laughed and walked of to class which had already started.
Akane followed behind still in shock as to what Ranma had done.
"Class we have some new students, they've just arrived from China"
the teacher pointed to the pigtailed pair.
"Would you please introduce yourselves to the class?"
"Hello I'm Ranma"
"Hi I'm Ranko"
Many of the female class members could be heard sighing heavily, others winked at him.
While many of the male members of the class stared and drooled at Ranko.
"Even though this is your first day here, that still does not excuse you for being late, stand in
the hall now"
"You too Akane you were late as well"
The trio stood in the hall each holding buckets full of water,
"Ahh man this really sucks" commented Ranma
"Well it's all your fault you know" Akane implied to Ranma
"Whatt?? how's it my fault, it was your fight" *it's almost the same as before* he thought
"That's right but I always manage to finish my fights before school begins! until you interfered today"
*hm....better not say what I did last time*
"Well I couldn't just stand by and watch so many people pick on you could I?"
"Well I don't need your help……"
"Umm Akane don't tell me you like having to beat up all those boys?" Ranko inquired
"anyway what was all that about anyway?" the redhead asked
"it's all that idiot's Kuno's fault, he made an announcement that whoever wanted to go out with me would have to beat me up first!"
"That's awful Akane" Ranko said with a sympathetic voice.
"Yeah that Kuno must be a real asshole to do something like that" said Ranma
"I know but everyone in Furinken listens to what Kuno's says or gets beaten up, although until today I never knew that Kuno was that good"
Ranma biting back a comment saying that a guy always holds back against girl, as he knew it would only anger Akane.
"Guess he's been practicing a lot more now then huh?"
Before the conversation could continue, a bucket full of water was sent flying towards Ranma's head, Ranma had sensed the thrower and his intent as he entered the corridors dodged the projectile easily.
Ranma knowing who from past experience, slowly turned towards Kuno,
"Fiend, honorless cur how dare......"
Kuno was cut off by Ranma's bucket impacting with his face, knowing that no matter how many
times in the future he would have to beat Kuno, he decided to confront him in his own area.
"YOU Kuno, you speak of honor but you attack an opponent when he isn't even looking"
This stopped Kuno in mid speech, as he considered what Ranma had said.
Kuno than began to walk away, *the villain is right*
"Very well I shall vanquish you another day Saotome"
With that he turned and stalked off.
"Wow I never seen Kuno give up so easily" commented Akane
The rest of the day went surprisingly uneventful considering Ranma ability to attract trouble.
When they reached the Tendo dojo, Ranma and Ranko immediately ran upstairs to their respective rooms. Meeting again moments later in the dojo. while Nabiki and Akane went to their rooms to finish their homework.
They squared of against each other, only this time the match was not as intense although would make
any expert sweat. They talked casually during the match.
"So Ranma when can we have a real match?"
"How about sometime next week over the weekend, so we've got some to settle down" Thinking back to the place where he and Ryouga had fought after he had learned the breaking point technique.
"Your on and you won't beat me this time"
Ranko glancing around quickly to see that no one was about, quickly form a wind spell, although very week it was enough to cause Ranma to lose his position in mid-air as he descended towards her.
Realizing too late what she had done Ranma attempted to compensate managing only to land awkwardly leaving himself open for a few seconds, as he attempted to balance and co-ordinate himself.
This was enough time for Ranko to flip him into the dojo wall, since they were already near the edges of the dojo Ranma did not have enough time to flip over as his back impacted against the oak wood that was the dojo's wall.
Picking himself off the floor he commented,
"Hey Ranko no fair you cheated we agreed no magic while we here"
"heh heh, it was worth it to see the look on your face when I cast that spell"
"Well I suppose your right, I mean you hips are way too wide for you to be able to dodge my attacks"
"Baka there's nothing wide about my hips" She spoke a little too loudly, as she cast a spell which caused a bucket in the corner of the dojo to fly towards him emptying it's contents on him.
"What???" was all Ranma could say before he was soaked.
"Hahahah...I got you back"
Ranma with a mischievous grin dashed towards Ranko.
Ranko had expected some sort of throw but was surprised when Ranma embraced her in a hug.
"Ha Ha now I'm not the only soaking wet"
Before Ranko retorted she stopped as she looked directly into Ranma's handsome face, right into
his crystal blue eyes.
Ranma noticed Ranko staring at him, could not help but notice her deep green eyes as well.
The pair lay there looking at each other for what seemed like hours.
*I've never really noticed this before but she is really cute* he thought
*Wait what am I thinking I have another chance with Akane, but she is really cute*
*I wonder what he's thinking those beautiful eyes of his seem to see right into the very depths of
my soul, why am I embarrassed I mean we're friends nothing more*
They stared at each other a moment longer, before Ranma heard someone approaching the dojo.
Quickly disengaging himself from the hold he back-flipped as to put a distance between himself and
Ranko. All in the blink of an eye.
Ranko likewise picked herself off the floor.
"Umm ha ha got you back for that."
"hmmm.....don't expect me to go easy on you this weekend"
Strangely enough Ranma had not felt uncomfortable while embracing Ranko, although he was always uncomfortable when either Shampoo or Ukyo hugged him.
"Anyway that was a really good move Ranko, ya caught me completely off guard"
"Thanks I can't wait until our proper match though"
"Yeah I know what you mean" thinking *I sometimes wish the pervert or old ghoul would
hurry up and get here, then at least I'd have a decent fight* He was confident with his previous' life's knowledge in the art and with the magic he learnt from Ranko the ghoul would have a hard
time beating him.
"Ranma, Ranko dinners ready" called Akane from the dojo entrance
At the sound of food the pair turned towards the entrance of the dojo and broke out in an all out run for dinner.
The two ate dinner relatively calm today compared to how they usually ate, there was less confrontations over the table for pieces of food.
Everyone just suspected that it was due to them just finishing a match in the dojo.
Ranma felt strange that for once he was actually having a normal meal at this table, a place where he was before constantly in conflict with Akane.
He remembered his mother telling him that the reason why Akane even cooked was because of him, the need to impress him was why she had tried so hard to cook, unfortunately she would try too hard leading to mistakes during the cooking.
Ranma of course had not believed this as he was so sure Akane always cooked to get him back for an insult or another.
*hmm I wonder if her cooking as bad as before*
A jerk from Ranko in his ribs snapped him back into reality.
"What you staring at pervert" She whispered
Ranma realized that he was staring at Akane, seeing her cheeks go slightly red. He felt himself begin to blush.
*Why is he staring at me, but why do I care he's just another boy although he is cut....*
Akane wondered where that last thought had come from.
"Um...nothing just thinking about school that's all" coming up with the best explanation he could.
Nabiki just watched calculating how to get a hold of more of Ranma's money.
Kasumi just sat there smiling, while mister Tendo was relatively calm considering how emotional
Ranma remembered him to be.
After that incident Ranma reminded himself that he had to be more careful, or he could let slip that this was the second time he had met this family.
After dinner Ranma decided to go to his room to actually catch up on some school work, reminded by that conversation with his mother.
She had reminded him that not situations would be resolved by violence, how even the greatest martial artist had at least the minimum education.
Ranma now realized how right his mother was about not being able to fight your way out of every situation. *I mean look at Nabiki she's was always conning me and I couldn't exactly beat her up*
He remembered how in the dojo the night before he had played Nabiki and her own game and had scored what he considered a victory.
As Nabiki had thought him as some dumb jock and had tried to manipulate him like one, but after over two years of being conned by her he was wiser now then when he had first arrived at the dojo.
Slowly as he began to think about his relationship with Akane, on the plus side she was not beating him to death with that giant mallet of hers but on the down side she seems to be avoiding me. He had at lunch time expected her to be waiting for him under the tree where they usually sat to have lunch but was slightly disappointed when he saw her with her friends instead.
*I know she dislikes being forced into this engagement, at least when I insulted her she actually talked to me, but now she barely even knows I'm here*
He decided to ask her now before he either forgot or lost his nerve, fearing that saying the wrong words would result in a free trip across Nerima
*Stop it* part of his mind told himself *stop treating this Akane like the one you knew, you've got a good chance here to start off on the right foot, just relax*
Ranma decided to take the more scenic, knocking on Akane's window as there was less chance of someone discovering what he was doing and spying on him.
"Hi.. Akane it's me Ranma open your window"
The curtains were abruptly pulled apart, to reveal a angry yet curious looking Akane.
"What are you doing outside my window you pervert!"
Biting back his natural retort he calmed himself,
"Look Akane I just wanted to talk that's all, I mean we're both in the same position"
She stared at him waiting for him to continue.
Ranma glad that nothing had connected with his face yet continued.
"We're both forced into this stupid arranged marriage thing...."
"If you think I'm gonna marry you...." interrupted Akane
"LISTEN will you, all I'm saying that it's stupid to force either of us into anything we don't want to,
so I'm here to say that if you don't want to marry me and I don't want to marry you we won't. honor or no honor, so don't worry about having to marry me OK"
With that said he pulled himself up to the roof and went back to his room.
Leaving behind a very surprised Akane.
Surprised because this boy had not attempted to convince her to marry him, even though she would as a matter of honor, this boy had told her she was free to do whatever she wanted.
*Perhaps he not like all the other boys at all*
Ranma returned to his room both physically and mentally tired, his heart had been racing during his talk with Akane. It was a relief he had actually managed to talk to her without being punted into the atmosphere.
*At least now she won't always be angry at me* he hoped
Now there was the other problem that would find him tomorrow.
He opened his hand to reveal several crumpled up listening devices positioned around his room and on the roof. He knew that Nabiki would have at least known he had visited Akane if she had not recorded
the whole conversation, *If mom finds out that I won't marry a Tendo she'll think I've got no
He gulped at the thought of being forced to commit seppuku after all the trouble he'd been
through. Then decided that his own sacrifice at another's happiness was worth it.
Strangely enough Ranma slept quite soundly that night dreaming of a certain person....or two.
The next morning Ranma was abruptly awoken by a bucket of cold water drenching him.
Opening his eyes he expected to see Akane, but looked up to see a grinning redhead
"What'd you do that for??????"
"Well I tried to wake you any other way but no go so I used the last resort"
she said while smiling widely.
Ranma noticed he was still wearing his red shirt and black pants, trotted past Ranko to the
bathroom, opened the door and walked in. Only to find himself staring straight at a naked Akane who was
just getting out of the bathtub.
They stared at each other for several seconds before Ranma's brain kicked into to action. He immediately grabbed his nose to stop the blood from draining out of his body, looked straight at the ground.
Akane's immediately react was to pummel this pervert when she notice him staring at the ground, instead of what a real pervert would do.
"Akane I'm sorryI'm sorryI'sorry...." he kept repeating as he back out the door careful not to
look up again.
Once Ranma was out in the hall, he noticed he was still soaking, not wanting to leave water all over the house and not wanting to go back into the bathroom just yet.
He concentrated and allowed his chi to flow through him yet keeping his battle aura close to his body. There a yellow glow that surrounded him, soon steam could be seen coming from him and after a minute he returned to normal his now clothes dry.
The rest of the morning went smoothly, Ranma and Ranko sparing which ended in Ranko taking a dunk in the pond, breakfast swiftly eaten.
Ranma was surprised however that he had yet to be approached by Nabiki by the previous night's events. Akane just acted like how she did the day before, neither actually ignoring him nor making conversation with him.
*Damn she must be mad about this morning* he kept thinking.
Akane however was wondering what kind of a person Ranma really was, she had thought he was a pervert but after thinking things through and remembering last night's conversation she was not so sure anymore.
As the four approached school they noticed a large group of boys, which were the male student body
of the school waiting outside the gate. The group was led by Kuno.
Akane thinking it was her daily fight began to tense up and ran towards the horde, stopping when Kuno spoke.
"Ahh the beauteous Akane Tendo, today I cannot allow for you to date with me for I have matters to
settle with the fiend Saotome"
Akane stunned that today she would not have to fight any boys, held back on beating Kuno as it never did any good anyway. Waited for Ranma and the others to catch up.
"Yo Kuno what's up?" asked the pigtailed martial artist casually.
"Fiend today I shall vanquish you for I cannot allow for your engagement to Akane stand" All the boys behind Kuno nodded supporting him.
"Say Ranma you want some help with these guys?" Ranko asked.
"Nah I need to work off some stress anyway, just help me get Nabiki and Akane inside the school before I start I don't want them to see or be near what I'm gonna do"
Ranko noticed the look in Ranma's eye. *Boy he must really have been stressed last night*
She nodded an acknowledgement and backed off.
"Vile cur what spell do you have over the pigtailed goddess that she would stand so close to
one such as you" shouted Kuno as he saw the interaction between Ranma and Ranko.
"C'mom Nabiki let's go"
"What Ranko this looks like the fight of the century, I'm gonna make a killing"
"Trust me Nabiki you don't want to be out here for what he's gonna do"
"Whatever I'm busy taking bets here"
"I'll give you a good tip Nabiki just get inside"
Currently the odds were five to one against Ranma, although many had seen the ease at which Ranma had defeated Kuno, with such overwhelming odds they guessed he didn't stand a chance.
"This tip of yours had better be good Ranko" Nabiki said as she was dragged into school by Ranko.
By now practically all of the remaining school had gathered at the windows to watch the match.
Many girls watched in horror as they saw that the boy whom they liked was about to be pounded by all the boys in Furinken.
Akane just smirked pretending not to care even though inside she prayed nothing would happen to Ranma, she knew he was better then her, but she also knew that these boys were not fighting to date Ranma but rather to cripple him, especially Kuno she noted did not have his customary bokken but rather a katana.
The mob slowly surrounded Ranma, completely encircling him.
Ranma all the while just stared at the ground.
"Dost thou fear me the great Tatewaki Kuno that he dare not even speak, thou are really a coward"
Ranma ignored the comments although normally he would have just gone straight up and knocked Kuno out. He had learned that his anger and recklessness often put him in vulnerable positions.
"Anyway Nabiki here's the tip, place bet on Ranma not only winning the match but that he won't even have a scratch on him at the end of the match"
"What are you MAD, he's completely surrounded"
"Well that's my tip take if you want to" with Ranko turned and left.
Nabiki had noticed that unlike many of the other girls watching the match including Akane all had a hint of concern on their faces. Ranko was the only exception, deciding to trust his instincts.
*If your wrong Ranko your gonna regret it* thinking as she placed a sizeable bet on Ranma winning
without a scratch.
Ranma without even looking up knew that the crowd was slowly yet silently closing in on him.
He prepared himself.
With a roar Kuno led the start of the attack,
"TODAY I SHALL VANQUISH YOU VILE CUR"
Ranma with lightning fast reflexes thrust out a finger to the ground at the same time shouting
Instead of the ground exploding to reveal a crater, the ground where everyone was standing on exploded upwards in dust. The whole area was covered in smoke from the dust.
"Fiend dost thou think they can hide from my justice" Kuno shouted between coughs.
The girls watching from the first floor were blinded by the dust.
"What the hell was that" asked Akane in general
"I don't see Ranma anywhere"
"Do you think he lost"
"nah couldn't be it's too soon right?"
Were the types comments coming all the way down the corridor from girl watching the match.
Ranko just stared *Guess he thought this out already, at least he ain't that stupid*
Knowing that Ranma always liked to down play his skills martial arts as a form of respect to many of his opponents, so as not to humiliate them.
"CHI WAVE" was the next shout heard from the dust cloud in the school yard.
Moments later thudding noises could be heard, then people noticed a figure walking out of the cloud
they saw the outline of his pigtail first.
He walked out of the cloud without even a scratch on him anywhere, there was only dust in his hair and clothes to indicate he had been in a fight.
He casually walked to class glancing up towards Ranko's direction and wave an ok sign.
She breathed out a heavy sigh, the sign Ranma had given her was to tell he that not only was he completely unhurt but that none of his opponents were either. As in no broken bones that is, many of the other girls believed that Ranma was waving to them so nearly fainted on the spot.
Within a few minutes the smoke cleared, everybody gasped as they saw the entire anti-Ranma group
were all unconscious on top of each other. Some looked badly bruised others were even bleeding.
Nabiki had calculated that Saotome had taken less then twenty seconds to end the match, if one could call it that. She was ecstatic as she had made over a hundred thousands yen on the opening bets.
Akane stared in shock thinking *HOW???*
Ranko shrugged her shoulders and proceeded to her and Ranma's class just as the school bell rang.
After a few minutes all the conscious students returned to their classes, Ranko spying Ranma in the
corner of the now mostly female class, (dueling to the majority of boys having to be takento the school's infirmary )
"Say Ranma you ok? I noticed you seemed a bit out of it ya know out of it ever since we came to Japan" She queried.
"..It's just that I've had a lot to think about recently, and all this hassle from Kuno and everybody is getting annoying"
"Why what you thinking about?"
"..um.. just wondering what's gonna happen when someone from that loony Amazon village shows up" He answered thinking up a quick and believable reason, *Well I'm not lying exactly, I'm a bit worried about what that mummy will do*, Ranma knew that he would probably end up fighting the old ghoul in the end but even with his extra skills the chances were not in his favor.
"Oh" as she remembered back a few months ago to that incident at the Amazon village.
The rest of the day went rather quietly as most of the male student body were still recovering from their injuries.
After school the four went home, Akane was still not talking much to anybody as she was still trying to figure out what she had witnessed in the school yard. Nabiki was smiling, happy to have made such a large amount on the fight.
Ranko and Ranma just walked silently along the fence each with their own thoughts preoccupying them.
*Well at least Kuno will be outta my hair for at least a week* was the only plus side he could conclude about the battle, although they had attacked him first he disliked to beat up weaker opponents as it seemed a bit too much like bullying and was dishonorable.
( To be continued….)