(A Ranma 1/2 Fanfic)

From the Desk of Megane 6.7

This is a work of Fiction.  All Characters and Landmarks are the
property of Rumiko Takahashi, Shogakukan Video, Kitty Films, Viz
Video, Shonen Sunday, and anyone else who legally owns the rights. 

(Note: This fanfic shifts back and forth from the past to the present. 
The stars indicate a time shift.)

10:00 AM.

   Akane Tendo stared up at the ceiling as she lay in her bed,
her mind wandering.  It had been an uneventful morning and she had
been too tired to jog or practice her martial arts in the gym.  With
Ranma and his father away on a training trip, things were actually
somewhat normal at the moment.  She glanced at the clock beside her
bed and saw there was a couple of hours before lunch would be ready
so she decided to lie back and meditate for a few minutes before
getting up.

   Many things that had once been central in her life had
changed drastically when Ranma Saotome arrived.  Every once in a
while, she would try to remember what her life was like before Ranma
and as time passed it became more difficult.  Still, there were aspects
of those days she doubted she'd ever forget and while they weren't all
pleasant, they played a big part in who she was today. 

   Akane rolled over on her stomach, resting the bottom of her
chin on her folded arms.  Sometimes she wondered how things would
have turned out if Ranma had never arrived.  Would she have eventually
met someone else and fallen in love?  Would she have waited years for
someone she had once cared for so deeply?  The possibilities were
endless back then.  No worries of arranged fiances or jealous rivals.  A
childhood dream that may have come to fruition someday.... 

   Akane slowly rolled over to a sitting position.  She glanced
around her room for a long moment, taking in everything, then stood
up and walked over to her closet.  She quickly changed into her
training gi and slipped her red headband around her forehead.  Taking
a moment to check her reflection in the mirror, she walked towards the
door but paused as she found herself staring at the Magic 8-Ball on her
desk.  It had been a birthday gift from Nabiki and even now served as a
reminder of the past, when things were different.

*    *    *

   "Here you go, Sis.  Happy Birthday."

   Akane looked up at her older sister.  "What is it?

   "It's an Magic 8-Ball."  Nabiki replied with a grin.  "People
use it to ask questions and predict the future.  You just shake it and
then turn it upside down for an answer.  I figured you'd like it."           
   Akane glanced back down at the 8-Ball, then shook it gently
and turned it over.  A small window revealed a die with the word 
*MAYBE* written in hiragana.  "I guess so." she murmured.  "Where
did you get it?"
   "Actually, one of my friends got it at school and gave it to me
to cover a small debt.  I tried to sell it but no one was interested, not
even Kunou-chan.  So I figured I'd save it for a rainy day and then
when your birthday came along...."

   "Nice to know you put so much thought into it."  Akane
replied sarcastically.

   "Hey, I could have just thrown it out but then I thought of you
and decided it would make the perfect gift for my little sister...." 
Nabiki replied playfully as she walked to the door. 

   Akane felt her cheeks flush slightly.  "Aw, come on, I'm only
a year younger than you, Nabiki."

             Nabiki's face became thoughtful for a moment.  "Well, that's
true.  You're already fourteen years old and Kunou-chan certainly
considers you to be a woman."  The sour look on Akane's face caused
Nabiki to break out into a grin again.  "Relax, Sis, I'm only teasing....
Although, you never know... one day you might actually find Kunou
   "Yeah, right...."  Akane muttered as Nabiki left.  It would be
a cold day in hell before Akane would even consider Kunou to be
anything else but a total jerk.  She had been kind to him only one time
when they had first met and ever since he had constantly asked her out
on dates and given her bouquet after bouquet of red roses, all of which
ended up in the garbage anyway.... 

   Akane walked over to her bed and began packing her supplies
for school in her satchel.  'Still, things could always be worse' she
thought to herself.  Ever since she had begun attending Furinkan High
School, she had made some new friends and despite Kunou's annoying
presence, life was pretty good for the most part. 

   "Akane!  Breakfast is ready!"  The voice of Kasumi drifted up
the stairs.  Akane closed her satchel and was about to leave her room
when she paused by the door and glanced at the Magic 8-Ball in her
hand.  After a moment's hesitation, she asked herself a question, shook
the ball and turned it over to see the answer.


   Akane sighed.  "Figures...."  she muttered as she placed the
ball on her desk and left her room, making her way downstairs.  Her
father and two sisters were already sitting at the table eating and she
quickly joined them. 

   "Good morning, Akane.  Did you sleep well?"  Kasumi asked
her sister with a smile.

   "Hai, Oneechan."  Akane replied as she poured herself a bowl
of miso soup....

*    *    *

   "Akane, is something wrong with your soup?" 

   Akane snapped out of her reverie and looked up to see her
family staring at her curiously.  "Oh, I'm fine!  That is... It's fine!" 
Akane quickly replied as she began eating.  After a moment, Nabiki
and Soun also returned their attention to their meals.  Kasumi, on the
other hand, wasn't so easily convinced.

   "Are you sure everything's okay?  You seemed distracted a
moment ago...."

   "I..."  Akane hesitated.  "I was just daydreaming.  It's nothing
to worry about, really."  she smiled at her sister who reluctantly nodded
and turned her attention back to the meal.  When they were finished,
Akane stood up and walked over to the back patio.  She leaned against
the side of the entrance and stared into the koi pond.

   She smiled as she watched the fish quietly go about their lives,
eating tiny plants, swimming and occasionally leaping out of the water
like a dolphin and falling back in.  In a way, those fish were lucky, their
lives were so simple.  Eat, drink, swim, jump, not having to worry about
things like cooking, family honor, being feminine or learning marital
   On the other hand, living the life of a fish would be rather dull
once the novelty of breathing underwater and jumping wore off.  Still,
there were moments that she thought otherwise as she continued to
watch the pond as the koi leapt from the water, sparkling in the

*    *    *

   The koi made a small splash as it landed.  At the same time,
Akane lashed out with a kick at her father as they continued their daily
sparring session.  Soun moved deftly, avoiding every one of his
daughter's moves while occasionally striking out his own offense. 
Akane managed to block her father's punch, but in doing so threw
herself off balance.  Soun went low and legswept her off her feet. 
Akane desperately tried to maintain her balance by landing on her
hands but Soun's legsweep followed through with another and Akane
found herself lying flat on her back, staring up at the dojo ceiling.

   "You've improved a great deal, Akane,"  Soun remarked as he
offered a hand to her and pulled her to her feet.  "But your attacks still
lack focus and concentration.  You tend to strike out blindly in anger
and it can easily be used against you in a fight...."

   "I know, Dad... I know...."  Akane replied wearily, her eyes
now cast down at the floor.  "It's just...."

   Soun placed a hand on his daughter's shoulder.  "What's
bothering you, Akane?  The last week, your attacks have become more
and more reckless and filled with even more anger than usual.  Is
everything all right?  Is there something I should know about?"

   "It's not your problem, Dad.  It's... It's something I have to deal
with myself."  Akane replied softly.  "I know that's not what you want to
hear, but...."

   Soun smiled while giving his daughter a reassuring look.  "It's
all right.  I won't push you if you don't wish to be pushed.  But I hope
you can find a way to resolve whatever it is bothering you.  Sometimes
your greatest enemy is yourself and the longer it takes for you to
confront your fear, the more difficult it will be to defeat it."

   "I understand, Dad.  And thanks."  Akane replied as she
bowed respectfully towards him.  Soun patted her on the shoulder as
he left the dojo.  When he was gone, Akane sank to her knees, her
expression sorrowful as she thought to herself.

   "Defeat my enemy... But how can I defeat my enemy... when
she's my own sister?"

*    *    *   

   Akane looked over at Dr. Tofu's clinic as she jogged past.  She
briefly considered paying him a friendly visit but he would most likely
be busy with his elderly patients right now and she didn't want to
impose upon him.
   As she turned the corner of the street, she wondered why she
was thinking so much about the past today.  Part of it, she figured, was
probably because she hadn't done it in a while, what with her usually
arguing with Ranma over something or another.  She had accused
Ranma on more than one occasion of her life being peaceful before he
wandered into it, but deep down, she knew her life had been anything
but peaceful, especially last year when her list of opponents had
increased dramatically.               

*    *    *


   Akane chanted the familiar mantra as she rushed towards the
horde of boys determined to win the right to date her, as if Kunou's
words meant anything to her at all, which they didn't....    

   She added an extra degree of speed to her legs as she reached
her first attacker, a javelin thrower, who was trying to use his javelin
as a Bo and failing miserably.  Akane snatched the javelin from him
and twirled it around.  Each time it smashed against his head, a piece
broke off until it was in splinters and Akane finished him with an
overhand right to the jaw.

   A pair of wrestlers attempted to take her off her feet with a
double clothesline, only to have their arms nearly wrenched from their
sockets as she flipped them up and over her head, not even pausing for
a moment as she punched and kicked her way through another series
of would-be suitors.  Several seconds later, they all lay unconscious at
her feet, their individual weapons scattered around them.  Akane took
a few moments to catch her breath, knowing her battle wasn't finished

   "Ah, my darling Akane Tendo...."

   Akane looked up as Kunou emerged from behind a tree, a look
of admiration on his face as he surveyed the carnage.  Akane wanted so
much to simply smash her fist into his face and get to class but she
knew it wouldn't be that easy....

   Akane blew out an angry breath.  "Can we just get this over
with, Sempai?  I have a class in less than five minutes...."

   Kunou smiled and placed a hand on his forehead as he replied.
"Time waits for no man, nor the woman who's heart awaits capture by
the man who's own heart is joyfully imprisoned by her."  He sighed
with pleasure for a moment and then he face grew serious once more.  

   "Therefore, I, Tatewaki Kunou, the Shooting Star of Furinkan
High... accept your challenge."  Kunou finished as he withdrew his
bokken and assumed a battle stance.

   The two combatants circled each other carefully, looking for
an opening.  Kunou usually waited until Akane made the first move, a
gesture that Akane found insulting despite its honorable intent. 
Nonetheless, Akane obliged him by lashing out with a kick.  Kunou
blocked it effortlessly and swung his bokken in a wide arc.  Akane
easily leapt over it and Kunou's head as she tried to catch him from the
blind side but Kunou was too fast for her and managed to deflect the
blow in time.

   They circled each other again and Kunou lashed out forward
with his bokken.  Akane dodged the blow and countered with a left
hook.  Kunou sidestepped the punch and swung around in the
complete circle to strike her exposed back.  Akane performed a full
backflip to avoid the blow and dropped low when the bokken swung
in her direction again, barely missing her head.  Akane then tried to
legsweep him, but Kunou leapt backwards defensively, his bokken
held in front of him protectively.
   "Though she is little, she is fierce...."  Kunou remarked with a
smile as they circled once more.  Akane felt herself trembling with rage
at those words.  Kunou seemed to say them at least once every time they
fought and they never failed to make her angry.  Whether Kunou
intended for that to happen, she didn't know and frankly she didn't care. 
She was going to make him pay for saying it....

   "KIYYYYYYYYYAAAA!!!"  Akane screamed as she attacked
with everything she had.  Kunou's bokken became a blur, blocking her
shots as fast as she could throw them.  Then there was an opening and
Akane drove her foot into his stomach.  Kunou gasped and took a step
back.  Akane pressed her attack as more holes in Kunou's defense
opened up and it wasn't long before she was finally able to send him
flying into LEO, his shattered bokken resting in pieces at her feet. 

   Akane then fell to her knees, exhausted from the battle.  It
seemed Kunou blocked her attacks more and more every time she
fought.  Even thought she always managed to defeat him in the end, she
wondered how he was able to block her attacks so easily earlier.  It
seemed the only way she could beat him was to get very angry and
usually that "little but fierce" comment did it every time....

   Suddenly the loud chimes of the school bell quickly brought
her back to reality as she stood up and rushed towards the school
entrance in order to get to her class on time. 

   The low rumble of thunder could be heard in the distance,
along with the sudden crack of lighting.

*    *    *


   Akane yelped in surprise as the flash of lighting and clap of
thunder brought her back to reality once more.  Then a downpour of
rain suddenly unleashed its full fury on her.  She quickly rushed
towards the nearest awning and stood under it as the rain continued to
pour in sheets.  Akane decided she might as well wait out the storm
and entered the nearest restaurant. 

   As her eyes adjusted to the dim interior, she took a seat in one
of the booths on the far wall.  After ordering some hot tea, she gazed
out the window as the rain continued to pour.  She had been furious
when she learned that Kunou had actually been holding back when he
fought her.  Naturally she had taken out her anger on Ranma, as she
tended to do almost daily whenever he was around.

   She knew that the things that happened to her and him wasn't
always his fault and she could be a bit hard on him at times but he had
a way of pushing her buttons in a way that caused her to lash out
automatically.  She didn't like being called a tomboy, she didn't like
having her cooking insulted after she went to so much trouble to make
it, she didn't like constantly losing her sparring battles to Ranma,
especially when he barely had to try anyway.  Just because she wasn't
as good a martial artist as him, didn't mean he had to rub her face in

   Akane rubbed her eyes and thanked the waiter as her tea
arrived.  She poured herself a cup and glanced at her reflection in the
steaming liquid before taking a long deep sip.

*    *    *

   "Almost... Not quite there yet...."

   Akane glanced at her reflection as she combed her long black
hair.  It was nearly as long as Kasumi's now.  Just a few more weeks
and it would be longer....


   Akane turned to see Nabiki poking her head in the door. 
"Hey, Akane.  You're going to be late for school if you don't hurry...."

   "I'll be there in a minute!"  Akane replied as she struggled to
untangle a knot in her bangs.  Nabiki entered her room and glanced at
Akane's reflection.  "Still trying to grow a ponytail, Sis?"

   "Yeah...."  Akane replied, distracted.  "It'll just take a few
more weeks for it to be...."

   "...as long as Kasumi's?"  Nabiki finished.

   Akane suddenly stopped brushing her hair as a big teardrop
appeared behind her head.  "W-What do you mean?"  Akane replied

   "Akane... look... I know it's none of my business... and I
know the guys at school are giving you a hard time and all... but I
think you might be setting yourself up for a huge fall here...."

     "I don't know what you mean."  Akane replied, trying
to keep her voice neutral.

   "Come on, Sis, I'm not blind.  Every time you have to see Dr.
Tofu about anything, whether it's a book that needs to be returned or
getting your ankle fixed, your face lights up like a Christmas tree and
you're practically walking on air."

   Akane felt her face turn a deep crimson.  "Y-You're crazy! 
You don't know what you're talking about!"

   Nabiki considered saying something else but thought better of
it and shrugged.  "Suit yourself, Sis.  I just don't want you to be hurt...."

   "Just leave me alone!"  Akane snapped as she returned her
attention to the mirror.

   "Okay."  Nabiki replied as she turned to leave.  At the door,
she paused for a moment and added.  "But even if it's not true, I'd better
keep it to myself... just to be on the safe side...."

   Akane turned towards her sister and caught the meaning in
her words.  "Thank you, Oneechan."  Akane whispered as Nabiki
flashed a quick grin and closed the door behind her.  Akane then took
another long look at herself in the mirror and smiled as she whispered.

   "I haven't lost yet...." 

*    *    *

   Akane gasped as the chill of cold water temporarily
interrupted her train of thought.  She shivered as she refilled the
bucket and poured it over her head once more, removing any last
traces of sweat and soap suds from her body. 

   Fortunately, the storm had been brief and she had finished her
jog about five minutes ago before heading to the bathroom.  After she
was finished cleansing herself, she walked over to the bathtub, filled
with warm water and slowly lowered herself into it with a long sigh. 

   As she felt the muscles in her legs, back and shoulders relax,
she remembered what she used to think about when lying in the tub. 
An embarrassed flush grazed her cheeks that had nothing to do with
the warm water she was currently relaxing in.  She used to fantasize
about *him* shamelessly, about the life they would have together once
she was old enough for him. 

   For a long time, she had considered her age to be the only real
obstacle that prevented him from noticing her, despite his obsession
with Kasumi, and she would treasure the time she spend with him,
hoping one day her patience would be rewarded.

*    *    *

   "That doesn't hurt now, does it Akane?"

   "Not at all, Dr. Tofu...."

   Akane felt herself starting to blush again and she desperately
tried to calm down as Dr. Tofu carefully examined her swollen ankle
with his soft gentle hands.  A sudden sharp pain caused her to wince.

   "Does that hurt?" Dr. Tofu asked.

   "A... A little."  Akane replied, gritting her teeth against the

   Dr. Tofu examined it for a few moments longer, running his
fingers along the bone and causing Akane to involuntarily blush once
more.  "Well, it doesn't appear to be broken, just sprained.  I could try
to fix it now but it would be very painful.  If you're willing to wait a
few days and rest, it should heal up nicely."  The doctor said with a

   "I'll wait."  Akane replied, reluctant to feel any more pain like
the jolt she just suffered.  She gingerly sat up on the examination bed
and then stood up, shifting her weight to her good foot.   "Thank you
very much for helping me,"  Akane said as she bowed deeply to him.

   "No problem!  It's what I'm paid to do after all!"  Dr. Tofu
replied cheerfully.  "Do you need some help getting home?  I'd be
happy to lend a shoulder if you need it,"  he added.

   Akane felt her heart beat faster as she stammered  "Uh... sure! 
I mean... That's very kind of you, Doctor Tofu...."   

   As Dr. Tofu slipped her arm around his neck for support,
Akane knew she was blushing like a beet turnip but at that moment,
she didn't care as the man of her dreams led her outside the clinic
towards her home.  She only wished that she lived farther away from
the clinic so she could savor the moment a little longer. 

   As it was, it only took them five minutes to reach her house. 
Kasumi was in the back yard, hanging some laundry on the clothesline
to dry.  When she saw them and noticed Akane's condition, she
immediately ran over towards them with a concerned look on her face. 

   "Oh my!  Dr. Tofu, what happened to her?"  Kasumi exclaimed
in alarm.

   "K... K... Kasumi...."  Dr. Tofu stammered, his glasses
immediately fogging up.  Akane found she had to struggle to keep her
arm around Tofu as he started to go into convulsions.  "I'm all right,
Kasumi.  I sprained my ankle jogging and Dr. Tofu helped me get
back home,"  She sighed.

   "Well, that's good to hear."  Kasumi's voice was filled with
relief as she turned to Dr. Tofu and bowed to him.  "Thank you for
bringing her back safely, Doctor."
   "Yggghh... Puuulll... Orrth...."  Dr. Tofu babbled incoherently
as he grinned like an idiot.

   Kasumi giggled.  "Oh, you're always clowning around,
Doctor."  She then unwrapped Akane's arm from his neck and placed
it around her own. 

   "Let's go inside and get some ice for that ankle...."  Kasumi
said as she lead Akane back towards the dojo.  Akane glanced back at
Dr. Tofu and was dismayed to see him running back towards his clinic,
no doubt to give his skeleton, Betty-chan, another wild ride through
the district while he whooped with joy.  It was enough to make Akane's
stomach turn... and her chest ache.                        

*    *    *

   Akane walked towards her bed and lay back on it, staring at
the ceiling once more.  Her skin still tingled from the effects of the
warm bath and she decided to rest for a while before dinner was ready. 
Suddenly, she heard a small *bwee* noise and glanced at the window to
see a soaked P-Chan, trying to get in.  Akane opened the window and
cradled her pet in her arms.

   "Awww... poor baby got stuck out in the nasty rain?  Well, you
wait here and I'll get you a towel so you can warm up...."  Akane cooed
at her cute pet.  P-Chan sneezed and then nodded slowly in understanding. 
Akane smiled at him as she got up and left her room, walking towards the

   Sometimes she wondered what it would have been like to have
a pet like P-Chan when she was younger, someone to comfort her when
she felt sad.  Then again, Akane couldn't imagine a better person to
have around to cheer you up than Kasumi....

*    *    *

   "Here's some watermelon for you, Akane...."

   Akane glanced over at her older sister, smiling in
appreciation.  "Thanks, Oneechan!  Just the thing I need after a good

     Kasumi had already divided the melon into slices and Akane
took one of them.  Taking a bite, she gestured at the remaining slices. 
"Aren't you going to have some?"

   "Well, I really should get back to preparing dinner for
Father...."  Kasumi replied.

   "Can't you stay for a little while?  I'm sure Dad won't mind." 
Akane coaxed.

   "Well, all right then."  Kasumi said as she took a seat next to
her sister and then helped herself to a watermelon slice.  "So how are
things going for you in school?"

   Akane sighed.  "Not too good.  That Kunou idiot keeps
attacking me every morning and now he's got an army of students
convinced to do the same."

   "Oh my!  Why would he do that?"

   "Because he's Kunou."  Akane replied sarcastically.  "Other
than that, everything just fine...."

   "Have you told him that you appreciate his offer but you don't
wish to become involved?"

   "In so many words, yes."  Akane remarked as she glanced at
her fists.  "He won't listen to reason, though.  So I use force and he still
doesn't listen.  It's getting to the point where I'm going to have to get up
an hour early and sneak into school if I want to avoid them...."

   "Have you tried talking to Nabiki?  Maybe she can help?" 
Kasumi suggested.

   Akane shook her head.  "She said she's tried but Kunou is too
stubborn to give up.  Besides...."  Akane said with a frown.  "I get the
feeling that Nabiki is encouraging Kunou, I'm not sure how though...."

   "Why would she do that?"

   "With Kunou?  Probably money.  He's supposed to be fairly
rich or so I've heard...."

   Kasumi was silent for a moment.  "Maybe you should try
dating him then...."

   "WHAT?!?"  Akane exclaimed, her eyes wide with shock.

   "Maybe if you dated him once, it would calm him down and
he would leave you alone."  Kasumi explained.

   "But... But... Kasumi, when we first met, I said hello to him
and offered him some of my lunch when he forgot his.  Ever since,
he's been chasing after me.  If I actually went on a date with him,
he'll follow me to the ends of the earth!"

   Kasumi's expression was thoughtful as she replied.  "Then
maybe you can try and get him interested in someone else." 

   Akane's brow furrowed.  "Hmm... well, some of the girls in
my class think he's handsome but so far the only one he's paid
attention to is me.  I don't know if he'll settle for anyone else...." 

   "And you're not flattered by that?"

   Akane felt the heat rise in her cheeks as she stammered. 
"Well... I... I mean... I guess it's flattering that he chose me over the
other girls... but... he's still a jerk....an arrogant conceded macho jerk
with no sense at all!"     

   Kasumi cast her gaze down at the floor.  "I guess you'll have
to put up with him until he finds someone else, or you find someone
that can protect you from him...."

   Akane's eyes glazed over briefly as a fantasy of Dr. Tofu
beating up Kunou and taking her into his arms entered her mind. 
Then she snapped out of it and replied, a little too quickly.  "I don't
need anyone to protect me!  I can defeat Kunou on my own!  I just have
to find a technique strong enough to get it through that thick skull of

   "Maybe you should try talking to father, then?"

   "Maybe...."  Akane quietly replied.  Then she looked over at
her sister and smiled.  "I guess it wouldn't hurt to learn some more
advanced techniques from him.  Thanks for the advice, Oneechan."

   Kasumi smiled and replied.   "Always."               
   Akane took another slice of water melon before rising to her
feet.  She was about to leave when Kasumi suddenly called out 

   "Yes, Oneechan?"

   Kasumi voice was filled with concern as she continued.  "Is
there anything else bothering you?  I've noticed you've seemed... distracted
the last few months and Father's worried about you."

   Akane winced involuntarily.  "It's nothing for either of you to
worry about... really."  she replied in a quiet voice.

   "Are you sure?  You know you can talk to me about anything?" 
Kasumi offered.

   'Can you make Dr. Tofu look at me... just once... the way he
looks at you?'

   "I'm sure."  Akane replied as she pasted a smile to her face
while banishing the unspoken thought from her mind....

*    *    *

   "Akane, Ranma's back!"

   Akane opened her eyes and glanced over at her sister. 
"What?"  she grumbled, her voice rough with sleep.

   "Ranma and Mr. Saotome came back early from their trip." 
Kasumi replied as she opened the curtains to reveal the ruddy glow of
the sunset.  Akane moaned and pulls the covers over her head. 
Kasumi noticed this and said,  "Don't you want to welcome them

   A muffled groan emerged from beneath the pillow.  Then
Akane pulled it off to reply.  "I'll be down in a little while.  I just need
some time to wake up." 

   "All right."  Kasumi replied cheerfully as she left her room,
closing the door behind her.  Akane allowed her eyes to close once
more but refused to allow slumber to claim her again. 

   Yes, things had certainly changed in the past year and she
had done a lot of changing with it.  Her crush on Dr. Tofu was a thing
of the past, Kunou was now a minor annoyance at best, the students
didn't attack her anymore and she was engaged to Ranma.  Even now,
she still refused to acknowledge, even to herself, how much she cared
for him.  She only wished she knew how he felt about her.  Their
fighting was less a battle of words than it was a battle of wills.  Who
would be the first to crack and reveal how they truly felt?

   Akane pulled off the covers and stretched her arms skyward
until she felt her joints pop and then she rose to her feet.  P-Chan was
still sleeping on the pillow next to her and she pulled the blankets up to
his neck, scratching his ears affectionately before heading downstairs.

   Ranma and Genma's attention was fully occupied with eating
Kasumi's dinner and they didn't notice Akane until she had sat down
at her place.  "Muuph!  Hey Akane!"  Ranma greeted her with a mouth
full of rice.  "Miss me?"

   Akane shrugged as she poured herself a bowl of tempura. 
"You were only gone for a few days, what's there to miss?"   

   Ranma swallowed the food in his mouth and almost looked
disappointed for a moment but recovered in time as he remarked. 
"Yeah, well, I thought it would be boring around here without me to
keep things interesting...."

   He expected a sarcastic or angry reply, instead he was
surprised when Akane actually smiled at his words, her expression
mysteriously nostalgic as she replied.  "Oh, I don't know about that. 
My life was pretty interesting before you came along, Ranma...."

   "Really?"  Ranma's voice betrayed his surprise.

   "Yep... maybe I'll tell you about it someday."  Akane replied
mysteriously as she took a long sip from her bowl, savoring the taste
and the moment. 

   "Then again, maybe I won't...." 

*    *    *

   Akane returned to her room after dinner and closed the door. 
Then she went to her closet and changed into her favorite yellow cat's
pajamas.  She was about to crawl into her bed when a thought struck
her and she walked over to her desk and picked up the Magic 8-Ball. 
She asked herself the same question she had asked over a year ago and
then turned it over.


   Akane smiled.  "Figures...."  she whispered softly to herself as
she carefully replaced the ball on her desk before turning in for the night.             


I hope you enjoyed this.  C&C is very welcome.  ( megane67@home.com)

Special thanks to Gary Kleppe and Robin "Lunari" Seabaugh for their C&C!

This was a spur of the moment story that came to me as I was reading
"Blue Thunder Rising" by R.P.M. and I wondered what sort of
problems and challenges Akane had before Ranma entered the picture. 

I tried my best to see things from Akane's point of view and how she
may have dealt with Kunou, Dr. Tofu and her sisters.  The switching
back and forth from present to past time frames seemed to help things
flow better and once in a while everyone takes stock of their lives and
what they did to deal with the problems they faced back then.

You can find my other works at -- http://www.nabiki.com/mst

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