Continuing Tales

Destiny's Child

A Crossovers Story
by Fire

Part 8 of 26

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Destiny's Child

Ranma loved Tokyo, and he wondered how he survived for so long away from Japan. Simply everything about the city made him want to leap with joy, and he felt alive today like no other. All around him, he saw people walking, talking and laughing. Spontaneously he joined them, leaping to the roof of a nearby house to laugh and cry in joy.

All around him the city stretched in its sprawling beauty. Even though the morning was still cool, and the dew sparkled off the roofs and trees, he could not recall the last time he had seen a more beautiful day. Leaping down to the street, he bowed to some startled people, waving his stick in a flourish, then ran laughing on his way. Surely today could not get any better. Oh, Akane, if only you could see me now.

On a day like today it was so easy for anyone to see why the city was so lovely. The people were nice, polite and, well, they were _his_ people. While cool, the day was remarkably pleasant, and the way the sun was creeping over the horizon - what a sunrise that was - it promised to be perfect and warm without being hot.

Standing in a park, Ranma spread his arms wide and closed his eyes. Opening his senses to the magic, he revelled in this other beauty. He had thought that there were potent places in Tibet, but they hardly compared to Tokyo. A focal point for the Ley Lines in the area, Tokyo was awash with energy, giving even the weakest magician the power to impress. And the colours! Blues, reds, greens, all moving and swirling together. Those poor people who could not see it! He laughed again, with all this power, it was no wonder Tokyo seemed to get attacked by giant monsters and demons more often than anywhere else in the world.

Oh, sure, Ranma knew about the demons. Who could live in Tokyo and not know about it? Good thing there was at least one effective vigilante group, otherwise he might feel inspired to do something. As it was, he had he spiritual, magical and physical senses wide open, drawing in the peace and glory of a perfect day, and blasting out waves of health and happiness all around him. Anyone coming within a ten meter radius of him were struck by a sudden feeling of relaxation and complete well being.

Even as he ran along the streets he came across a small trebling in the spiritual dimensional barriers. Today was not a day for fighting: it was a day for champagne wishes and caviar dreams, a day where they all came true. Ignoring the stares of the people watching, he moved over what would soon be an entrance from one of the nether worlds, and began to dance. Mapping out a warding, he sealed it in place with lines of fire, drawn magically from the buoyant, exuberant feelings he had.

Even as he moved on down the street, the glowing symbols faded, powerful motifs etching themselves into the ground. That was his good deed for today, and one demon that the Girl Guides would never need to deal with.

Grabbing a lamp post, he swung himself around and almost burst into the chorus of 'Singing In The Rain', hampered only by the fact that there was no rain to be singing in. Hmm, too dark down on the streets, time to hit the roofs again. Laughing in a subtly disturbing manner, he ran and jumped, propelling himself at speed, not caring about the looks, or the comments he attracted.

This morning, Mistress 9 had awakened him just before sunrise. Her long work was paying off, and she had finally broken one of the most powerful parts of the spell. No longer was he cursed to change at anything less than boiling water: warm water was sufficient! Oh, Akane, if only this could have happened 400 years sooner!

At the same time that Ranma was running around and exhorting just how lovely the day was, others were bemoaning the fact that it was another school day. Children all over the city were rising and getting ready for another day of dull lectures. Had he considered the problem, Ranma probably would not have cared what his friends at school though of Hotaru's absence today. Fortunately, Hotaru did not have any friends, so no-one really noticed her absence.

The girls of Juuban High saw it as another day of the same old routine. Strange things were afoot, but traditionally they waited until after the girls had rushed through their morning routines and arrived at school. The school may have felt some sort of lenience if a demon had attacked it's students and that caused them to be late, but since Usagi and Minako were late so often, they got to stand in the hall of a while.

Most of the other Sailor Senshi (in their normal guise) were at school, attending some form of learning institute. Only one was not today, and that was Sailor Pluto. She knew they were out there, and she knew that it was almost time to contact them. The Outer Senshi would be needed soon, and she would be there to bring them into the fold and guide them to their future. But now was not the time, and since time was her speciality, she waited and prepared.

At the Mugen Gakuen Academy a pair of close friends spent the day in peaceful bliss, ignoring any vicious rumours which may have been circulating. What does it matter what other people say when you only care about the opinion of one other person?

Rei's day had been as good as one could expect for a school day. No monsters, no demons, no Usagi wailing at nothing in particular... actually today was quite good. The quality of the day really rested on the perspective that you looked at it from.

Walking down the street outside the school, she nodded to passing friends and acquaintances. To these people, the day had probably been fairly dull, maybe even a bit of a trial, depending on the amount of study that they had done. From that perspective, today was wholly unremarkable.

Saying a quick 'Hello, Sensei' she passed one of teachers who was picking on several of the rowdier students. Rei flicked her long black hair over her shoulder as the wind brushed it and ignored the stares from the boys. They were so immature. To them, today would be measured by which girls they managed to grope, or which boys they intimidated. Feh! How trivial!

Turning down a street, she headed to some stores on the way home, her shoes clicking on the concrete paths. Her religion taught the value of all things, and their place. Her friends in the Senshi also taught her the same things. They might be aggressive or flighty, smart or klutzy, but they all realised the significance of what they fought for. To them, the lives of these simple shop keepers was something worth risking their own lives for.

As she took some fruit from the vendor and handed over the coins to him, Rei wondered what his opinion of today was. Did his world revolve around profit and loss? Or did he have a family? Wife and children more valuable than the whole world? Could he even understand what she was thinking? Would he understand the point of view of a girl reincarnated from the defenders of a kingdom which was now rising from thousands of years of slumber?

Probably not.

Arriving at the Hikawa Shrine which was her home, she removed her shoes and walked inside. Stopping in the kitchen, she deposited the fruit she would be using for desert. She headed to her room and got changed, all the while wondering about her grandfather. She did have to admit his wisdom, but she wondered how much he though about the serious issues in the world. Or was his view of important actually that different from hers? Perhaps she should ask him.

Rei was so wrapped in her thoughts that she hardly registered the sound of voices as she walked through the shrine buildings seeking her grandfather. All her life she had been training to take over the shrine, and he was her teacher. Not only her teacher, she realised, when she walked into a room containing her grandfather and a young man with his black hair held back in a short pony tail.

Both the men looked up at her intrusion, and she bowed her head in shame. How could she have been so rude? "My apologies, I shall be sweeping the yard, Grandfather."

Before she could back out of the room, her guardian called to her. "Rei, a moment of your time. This young man has come to us seeking some training in Shinto. He says he is not acquainted with our methods, but he has studied some similar work in India. Would you be so kind as to work with him for a while?"

As soon as she bobbed her head, he was up and out of the room. Looking at the boy, she realised what her grandfather was up to again. Always match making! From the way the boy was staring at her, she figured that he must have seen her here before and came purely for a chance for a date. "I'm sorry, if you've come to ask me out for a date, I'm not interested."

The boy just sat there. It wasn't that she was not interested, he was quite cute in all honesty, she just did not like the idea of someone taking advantage of her religion as a dating service. After a minute he still sat there with an open mouth, gaping at her. Bending down in front of him, she waved a hand in front of his face.

Ranma had been stunned. While he was bouncing around the city he had seen the shrine and realised that he had no knowledge of the most popular religion of his native land, so he had dropped in for a chat. They had retired to a small, sunlit room, and Ranma had stacked his small pack and walking staff in one corner. After talking with the old priest for a while, this girl had walked in, and he had almost fallen over. In his mind, he added twenty years and removed about three foot of lustrous, beautiful, black hair.


"No, I'm Rei."

"Is... Is it you, Akane?"

She stood up and put her hands on her hips. She had heard of boys trying the 'Do I know you?' trick, but she did not believe anyone would really be dumb enough. "No, silly. Rei. One syllable: Rei. Akane, three syllables, Rei: one."

The boy shook his head and bowed. "My apologies, Rei-san. I mistook you for a very dear friend. She... She died a long time ago. The Indian mystics... they often told me of reincarnation. I'm afraid I was mistaken for a moment."

Rei returned his bow. He was not quite as bad as she though, even if he did admit to trying to us a pick-up line on her... sort of. "That's OK..."

"Ranma. Tendo Ranma."

"That's OK, Tendo-san. I think I can say with pretty-high confidence that I am not the reincarnation of anyone you might know." Not unless you happen to be thousands of years old, she thought.

"Please, call me Ranma. Should I call you Sensei?"

Rei let out a chuckle. "No thanks, I don't think I'm quite ready for that title yet. Well, why don't we see what you know."

After giving a general overview of the philosophy, Rei went on to show Ranma some of the more applied aspects of Shinto, since that was what she had been planning on studying tonight. Fighting demons gave her a real interest in improving the speed and quality of her wards.

After demonstrating a half a dozen of the basic wardings, to ensure pleasant dreams or good cooking, Ranma paused her for a moment and pointed to the last one she had written. "That's a knew one to me. It's got a simple sort of efficiency. I know someone who could have really benefited from a cooking charm... once..."

Seeing her guest start to drift off into memories, Rei gave him a brief tap. "Pay attention! Do you mean you know the others?"

"Well, not precisely. I'm familiar with the first three, and I know the fertility charm in a few older forms. The dream ward... that one I only know in this form; can I borrow the brush?"

Passing him the brush and ink, Rei sat in amazement as Ranma rapidly began to sketch. In fast, flowing strokes he built a ward. At first she was lost, then she saw the form beginning to emerge. It started out as an alarm against possession, then built up, including charms for fortune, happiness, and dreaming, ending with a seal against demonic tampering or intrusion.

Rei sat back stunned. She could have constructed it, but it would have taken her five times as long at least. And she would have had to work it out from scratch. What was sitting on the floor was the dreaming equivalent of a reinforced steel door, compared to her fly screen. Catching her breath, she studied it a bit more.

Hah! He knows the form but it's not active! No wonder it was so easy. "Nice picture, but it won't do anything. Anyone can draw a pattern, but can you charge it?"

Taking the ward she drew in her hand she chanted and threw it at a wall where it stuck. "Rin, pyou, tou, sha, kai, jin, retsu, sai, zen. Akuryou taisan!"

Ranma raised an eyebrow as the ward glowed with life and then settled back to its waiting form, appearing no more than a decorated piece of paper. Taking his own, larger, ward he simply passed it to Rei. "Most impressive Rei-san. You show a lot of talent. With that sort of power, you might even be able to banish a minor demon."

Rei snarled. Make fun of her, would he? Taking his ward she slapped him over the head with it. When it glowed into life and he had to pull it off, she almost fell over. "But... It wasn't... but it is... how... when?"

Ranma laughed. "It's a matter of practice. It won't work on me since I wrote it, so there's no need to worry about that."

"Gee, you're pretty good. I'd hate to be beaten by a girl, at least I'm still the best at that."

Ranma smirked. Don't worry, Rei-san. Mistress 9 tells me it should only be a few more months, and you really won't have to worry. Just a little longer and I'll be a whole man.

They stayed and talked for much of the evening. Around seven, as storm clouds gathered, Ranma made a hasty goodbye. Donning his pack and taking his staff in one hand, Ranma stepped into the main courtyard and bowed deeply to Rei. "Thank you so much for your time this evening, Rei-san. I'd really like to come back again, and we can teach each other some more."

"Bah! You just got lucky. One ward and you think you know everything. Idiot! See if you can do that again next time."

Ranma danced backwards out of her reach. He hadn't had this much fun arguing with anyone since he met that trader in 1641. "Ha! You are so uncute!"

Rei snarled and was about to yell at him when he clapped both hands over his mouth, a look of absolute terror coming over his face. Before she could do anything he was outside, and she was ducking under cover to avoid the rains which chose that very moment to start falling.

Rei was barely under cover when her grandfather was pushing her back into the downpour. "No, no, no. Can't let a handsome young man walk home in the rain, can we? Quick, quick, go get him, you two can spend the night.... studying! Yes, you need a study partner."

Mumbling under her breath and glaring daggers at the old man, she complied, but there was no sign of Ranma. Far down the street - in either direction - all she could see was the one small girl walking miserably in the rain, carrying an oddly familiar staff, and wearing clothes that somehow looked too large.

The one small girl was also Ranma, and she could not believe what she had said. 'I'm sorry, Akane! I didn't mean it! It just slipped out! She's really pretty, honestly! You're the only uncute tomboy for me! I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!'

Neither the rains nor the heavens cared, and Tomoe Hotaru walked home: sniffing, crying and dripping the whole way.

Destiny's Child

A Crossovers Story
by Fire

Part 8 of 26

<< Previous     Home     Next >>