Lost Library Email Form Lost Library Mailing List
Lost Library Home Page
 
A Ranma/ Rurouni Kenshin crossover story
by Brian Randall

Disclaimer: Ranma ½ belongs to Takahashi Rumiko and Viz video.  Nobuhiro Watsuki owns Rurouni Kenshin.

Notes: Please please be certain to read the first part of this story, "I am Become…" before you read this fic. Otherwise, it will make little to no sense.


Epilogue


Ennui.

She sighed, drumming her fingers against the table, and watching her sisters closely. Something had happened, though what it was, was beyond her…

Ranma too had been touched, dancing through a kata effortlessly over the koi pond, gracefully avoiding the water, all the while wearing a… a… relaxed look.

A peaceful expression.

She shook her head, glancing at her younger sister, who was staring raptly at her pigtailed fiancé.

Shaking her head again, she turned back, watching as Ranma landed from a series of tight flips, and swept a bow towards the house — only to slip and fall in.

Frowning, Nabiki turned away, ignoring his now higher-pitched peals of laughter at himself as he struggled out of the pond, echoed quickly by her sisters.

"Hey, sis?"

The older sister looked over, a bemused smile playing across her face as Ranma set about drying himself off before entering. "Yes, Nabiki?"

"What's going on?"

"What do you mean?"

"I mean, what happened? How did Ranma's father get hurt, and why is Dad acting so weird lately, and… where the heck did the old pervert go?"

Kasumi turned somber instantly, regarding her sister frankly. "There was a fight. Saotome-no-Ojisan was injured, and… Grandfather Happosai moved along." Shaking her head, she rose, softness slowly seeping back into her eyes. "Now if you'll excuse me, I'm afraid I have to help a friend with something." She turned towards the pair of girls — towards Ranma and Akane, speaking in low tones on the back porch. "Ranma? Akane? Would you care to join me?"

A light in Ranma's eyes flickered briefly, one that she had not seen in the pigtailed martial artist's face before. A light that spoke of confidence, strength… of… tranquility. She blinked, thinking for a moment that it was mirrored in her sisters' eyes, but then vanished.

Ranma nodded, pulling his shirt on while Akane whispered something that caused him to glower at her sharply, and stick his tongue out.

She turned away, already knowing what happened next, and pushing the image from her mind. "So," she addressed her father, somehow not catching the lack of ensuing violence that she had expected, "Can you tell me what's going on?"

The man shook his head, his eyes seeming distant. "I suppose, Nabiki, that they've grown up a bit." He amended a moment later, smiling at her, "I suppose we all did. Come, Nabiki, let's say hello to your mother."

She sighed, hanging her head. He would be insistent, and fall apart, and weep and wail, and… "Sure, Daddy. Let's go." Maybe if they were to hurry, he would finish weeping before dinner.


He poked at the okonomiyaki in front of him, his schoolmate in the seat at his side, poking at his own.

"So," the other said in a low tone, trying not to be heard, "I guess the rumors are true."

He nodded, taking a bite of his okonomiyaki, and momentarily stunning himself with the flavor. "Good stuff," he managed, blinking, and reeling.

The other grinned knowingly, and nodded. "Oh yeah… you think all three of them girls go at it together?"

He hung his head, sighing. "Why must you always be such an idiot?" he hissed.

Before the other could respond, a voice cut through the air, silencing both of them.

"That, my friends, is not a question I think you'll find an answer for."

He turned to look at the speaker, and the other with him, taking in for a moment the assembled trio. A pair of trios, actually. Ranma, in his girl form, Akane, and Kasumi in one. And in the other, Ukyou, Shampoo, and Konatsu.

A part of him wanted to lurk, to decide which of them was cuter… and he had no doubt his companion would feel the same way. But something in Kasumi's voice had said, beyond any possible doubt, that he should leave. He grabbed at his food, muttering, "Yeah, yeah, you're right…"

She nodded in a good-natured manner, eyes sparkling with mirth, and announced, "Now be off, and let us speak in private."

He shrugged, already halfway to the street. "Sure thing. Girl talk is boring anyway."

There was a snort, and one of the voices — he wasn't sure which one — responded, "We need to speak of things that matter to warriors and women." He glanced back over his shoulder, confused, but all six of them were too busy giggling, a giggle that built into a much deeper laughter.

Rolling his eyes, he walked away again, mumbling, "Whichever one, I ain't gonna understand it."

Another friend saw him and the other in the street, calling out, "Hey! Hiroshi, Daisuke! I got a copy of Final Oxymoron 12! Come on over and let's check it out."

He grinned slowly. Maybe he wouldn't understand it, but then, he at least, would never have to.

 

Scattered pebbles flung,
Sweep wide across the pond, and
Come home far apart.

 


Author's Notes: That haiku, I believe, summarized things quite well.

Errata: I can only hope that this lives up to Durry's original ideal, but it's a horribly difficult thing for me to work on… It's really his more than it was ever mine. :\

Right. This is the point where you all look at me like the moron I am, and say, "What on earth was that supposed to be!?"

And I reply, "Well, you see…"

So what is it about?

That's one I have to mull over.

It's going to mean one thing for me — that's certain. But for everyone who reads it, it will mean something else. There's different ways for it to be interpreted… I also hear a lot of complaints that it doesn't make a lot of sense. But then, it's not meant to. Rather, not at the most basic level. If you want to look at it that way…

It's not a story of, "Cologne uses another evil Amazon Seekrit™ and Kasumi reveals herself as the closet-super-power." Well. Actually, it is. But it's also more than that. It's a story about the search for self, and the best answer to a bad situation in a world of extremes.

Though… I suppose if you wanted to you could take it as a story of just people doing things, where Cologne is the ultimate evil, etcetera… but if you look at it that way, you're missing a lot. Cologne's no more evil than Happosai is good, really.

The biggest complaint that I get is that the action scenes in the second chapter were unclear.

I have an answer to that issue.

I know. I like it that way. If you're focusing on the combat, you're missing the point. It's there, but it's far from the central issue of this story. It's just a backdrop for what's happening internally.

I'm dodging the question?

Well — imagine that, out of time…

*sigh*

Well, the fight may seem important, and I guess to some people, it might be… but the actual combat feels like a backdrop to me.

I apologize, because this story is both a good and a bad thing. Because of this story, my friend, Durandall… is gone.

Studying the yin and the yang within this story has allowed me to finally lay one of my own ghosts to rest, and I suppose that I'm as complete as someone with disassociative identity disorder can be now, but… I'll miss Durry.

So thanks to everyone who helped me along this road, as confusing as it is, and to Durandall, my friend… goodbye.

Any questions or comments can be directed to me.

 
Layout, design, & site revisions 2005

Webmaster: Larry F
Last revision: May 21, 2007

Old Gray Wolf