A Ranma ½ story
by D.B. Sommer
Disclaimer: Ranma ½ and its characters and settings belong to Rumiko Takahashi, Shogakukan, Kitty, and Viz Video.
All comments and criticisms appreciated. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
With apologies to Brian Randall, but I felt I had to do it. This was whipped up pretty quick, so it's more than a little rough in some places.
Kodachi looked down from the edge of the bridge to the icy dark waters far below. What a winter season this was turning out to be. It wouldn't take long, and she heard that there was little pain involved with freezing to death. Actually she would probably drown first, but with any luck she would be so numb from the cold that she wouldn't feel a thing once her lungs filled with water and unconsciousness claimed her.
Softly she murmured. "Not fair. Why me? No one cares for this lonely Black Rose in the field of red. They'd all be better of without me. They'd be happier without me, I bet."
Coward. That's an easy way out. You're better than that. Or are you?
"I suppose I am. I am a Kunou, after all." Kodachi reluctantly accepted this was not the right way to go about things.
She stepped forward, peering about for a familiar sign to lead him back to her estate, when she heard a voice behind her. "Or maybe, you're a coward for living. Ever think of that?"
Kodachi turned then to see a huge black monstrous form, at least five hundred pounds with sharp fangs, huge muscles, completely nude, showing obsidian-black skin that reflected no light.
"What are you?" she gasped
"My name is Rellram. I'm a tentacle rape demon. I've been sent to show you what a good job you've been doing."
"But you have no tentacles."
Rellram blushed slightly. It made an odd contrast with his obsidian-black skin. "Well, you see, that's sort of the problem. Every time a tentacle demon gets another soul into purgatory, he gets another tentacle. I'm sort of… Well, I've been on a bit of a dry spell lately. Okay, for my entire existence. But I'm sure it's going to turn around, starting with you."
"What's that supposed to mean?" Kodachi asked.
Rellram smiled, showing his pointy teeth. "I know you were considering jumping off that bridge. But there's no need for that. You have a great deal of value to us, don't you know? We like you lots for the great work you've done and wish to help you further. You'll see what it would have been like without you, and show you just how important you are."
Kodachi blinked in surprise, "What's that supposed to mean?"
The demon shook his head, "Not all that bright, are you? Come on. It's not like you have much of a choice in the matter. And remember, they can't see you."
"I don't understand what you're talking about."
Her statement was answered with an amused snort. "I guess you need to get out and see more foreign Christmas movies. Anyway, you'll understand in a moment."
It was daylight as Kodachi saw her brother approach the front gates of Furinkan. That in itself was not surprising. What was surprising was that Akane Tendou was holding him by his arm in a way that implied it was the result of something other than forced reluctance.
As they entered the school grounds, Akane detached herself from her brother's arm.
"Would you please allow me to deal with the rabble today?" Kunou asked politely, though with obvious desire to take matters in his own hands clear in his voice.
Akane shook her head. "Nope. You made the challenge. Now I'll have to live up to it." The note of disapproval was clear.
"I was merely joking. I did not believe for a moment those witless fools would take me at my word."
"You have to learn not to shoot off your mouth, Tachi-san," Akane voice continued to hold tacit disapproval, but not in a particularly forceful amount.
Kunou simply grunted, accepting the reprimand with reluctance.
A moment later, a horde of boys charged forth, shouting. "To date you, we must defeat you!" and promptly attacked Akane.
Kunou watched the carnage with the tired eye of one used to witnessing such things. "Loathe though I am to admit, she is right. One of these days I must learn to curb my tongue. Not that I would admit such a thing in her presence."
"Then my silence will cost you ten thousand yen."
"And one of these days, I must learn not to speak my thoughts aloud," Kunou said as he handed Nabiki the appropriate sum.
Kunou watched as Akane easily handled the last couple of attackers. He was preparing his congratulatory speech for her when his eye caught Miko Arisugachi walking to her classes. She did have a fine turn of the leg, and her hair glistened most proudly in the breeze.
A punch to his kidney caught even more of his interest.
"Hey! What did I tell you about your roving eye?"
Kunou rubbed the sore spot Akane had given him. Then he saw her with her hands on her hips, more angry at him than at the unwanted challengers she had beaten off.
He bowed low to the ground. "I admit that my eye does still roam, Akane Tendou. Old habits are hard to break. However, rest assured that no matter where it may stray, it will always comes back to rest upon you."
It was obvious Akane wanted to remain angry, but the total conviction in Kunou's voice won her over. "It figures. Only a baka boyfriend like you could talk smooth enough to get away with looking at other girls and not make me break up with him. Let's go to class."
"As always, at your service, my Tigress of Passion."
"Well, well, isn't someone in rare form today?" Akane said teasingly.
Again the couple linked arms once again and entered the school, bliss obvious on both their features.
"My brother won the heart of that harridan?! But he's a deluded imbecile. And why wasn't he as pompous as usual? And since we did he admit he had any shortcomings?" Kodachi asked in stunned disbelief.
Rellram shrugged. "Well, since you weren't born here, Kunou's mind was never affected by the constant drugs you bombard him with, making him much more grounded in reality. With a better grip on how people really reacted to him, he modified his behavior accordingly. The man is one smooth operator now, able to charm just about any woman there is. And he was happy to charm them, until he went out with one Akane Tendou. Then something changed, and for the first time in his life he found himself genuinely in love. He's still getting used to being a one-girl kind of guy, but Akane is slowly breaking him into the idea over time. She's in as much love as he is, even if she initially only asked him out as the result of losing a bet with her friends. It turns out she's always had a weakness for nice-looking guys that are good with flattery and NOT jerks about it. You know, the sincere type, which your brother turned into shortly after their first date. Now they're in the later stages of love, and are slowly working out the kinks necessary to make their union last a lifetime."
"Oh," Kodachi said in a soft voice.
"A pity. They're almost normal now. Not the bringers of misery and chaos like in your world." Rellram gave a sad sigh. "Let's see what happened to another couple people that are involved with your life."
"Ryouga, the movie is this way."
"Sorry. I was looking for the bathroom."
"Oh, silly airen. No try to find directions for yourself. Shampoo does not want to waste time trying to find you for another three days. You just lucky Shampoo is such a good tracker, or Ryouga would get lost for even longer."
"Yeah. Thanks for going out of your way to help me out. Sometimes I don't think I'm worthy of you. If it wasn't for me accidentally hitting you with my umbrella, you wouldn't be forced to go out wi— Ow! Don't hit me like that!"
"Silly airen. How many times does Shampoo have to tell you she wants to date you for who you are, not that you defeat her in combat? Now let's go in before we miss movie."
Kodachi watched in fascination as the Amazon and the perpetually lost boy wandered into the theater arm and arm. Shampoo was obviously the more comfortable of the two, resting her head on Ryouga's broad shoulder, but Ryouga only appeared slightly nervous at the close proximity of the girl.
Kodachi was completely perplexed. "Did she actually say she didn't care that he defeated her? And why is she is spending time with that simpleton instead of darling Ranma?"
Rellram stared down with just as much disapproval at the scene. "It's quite sad, really. You see, since Akane was dating Kunou when Ranma showed up, and since she was obviously quite interested in her boyfriend, Ranma was engaged to Nabiki instead. He ended up loathing it even more here than the brief time they were engaged in your universe, largely because Nabiki feels slighted at being forced into this and is taking it out on him. So when Shampoo showed up and he accidentally defeated her again, he was more than happy to date her. After the two went out for a while, they both realized they would be better off as friends rather than marriage partners and conveniently pretended the defeat hadn't occurred. Shortly after that, Shampoo was accidentally knocked unconscious by Ryouga. Having learned from the last situation where she gave a 'Kiss of Marriage' and considering that things might not work out, she decided not to give it and opted to date Ryouga instead. He was so starved for affection he readily agreed, though he's still learning with how to deal with the fact someone is genuinely interested in who he is. It figures a ruthless headstrong Amazon wouldn't care if a guy's really a seething engine of rage and depression deep down inside.
"Talk about a lousy outcome. Why, property values have doubled with the lack of destruction Ryouga normally causes. Hell, Shampoo doesn't come up with pathetic attempts to magically win his heart, or even run over people with her bicycle. This whole place is painfully boring!" Rellram wined.
"I… see," Kodachi reluctantly said.
"Let's check in with the last little twisted creature involved in your life, not counting Happosai or your father." Rellram waved his hand and the scene shimmered before him.
Kodachi scratched her head as she saw a young girl and man talking with one another within the halls of Furinkan. She recognized neither of them.
"Well, I suppose if you want to go out, we can," the girl cooed.
"Why, the little tease is playing hard to get. Even I can see that," Kodachi said.
"They can't hear you," Rellram reminded her.
"But it's so obvious, not that that lovestruck fool would notice anything short of a couple of gymnastics' pins aimed at his head."
The young man spoke again. "Aw, come on. I'm a great guy, once you get to know me."
"But I just went out with Hiroshi the night before last. Would it really be proper for you to go out with me when he's doing the same?"
"Are the two of you going steady?"
"No. I don't have a steady boyfriend."
"Then it's settled. We can go out tonight."
"Sorry. I already have a date. How about day after tomorrow?"
"Why not tomorrow?"
"I do have a restaurant to run. Okonomiyaki is a big portion of my life. If you want to go out with me, you have to accept that as a part of me."
"No problem," Daisuke assured her.
"Fine, we'll work out the details tomorrow. Bye." The girl gave a wink of her eye as she wandered off, swaying her hips as she moved further down the hall.
Kodachi stared in amazement. "That… that was the cross-dressing harridan that is after my Ranma?"
"Yep," Rellram confirmed.
"But, she looked-"
"Incredibly beautiful when she tries to look like a girl instead of a guy," Rellram drooled. "I know she'd be my first choice of rape victim, once I get a tentacle to rape with, I mean."
Rellram gave a disapproving glare. "After the mutual break up with Shampoo, Ukyou came onto the scene and challenged Ranma. He called her cute again, and this time he decided to go out with her afterwards. Only it turns out that after several dates, the image of Ranma she had built up in her mind didn't match the one in reality. She tried changing him, but he was resistant to any changes, so they broke up. As part of a backlash, she forswore her cross-dressing and decided to take up the mantle of pretty womanhood at last. Since then she's discovered the power of female sexuality and has to practically beat off her admirers. The only holdover to her old life is her okonomiyaki. It's terrible! She's no longer a deluded, obsessive, cross-dressing, violent thug, but a pleasant, if something of a tease, semi-normal girl! It's enough to make me toss my cookies. Let's blow this pathetic joint!"
With a wave of his demonic hand the two vanished.
Once again the duo stood on the bridge in wintry night. Rellram smiled at Kodachi. "Now you see how effective your presence has been in spreading the seeds of chaos and destruction and how much happier everyone would be without you. Wouldn't you like to gain revenge on them all by signing a deal with m-"
"Wait a moment," Kodachi interrupted. "What about Ranma?"
"Oh, him," Rellram gave an annoyed stare. "Things actually turned out semi-good there. He was forced into a loveless marriage with Nabiki. After ten years of abject misery, he finally sired a son with her. Once he fulfilled the family obligation, he committed suicide."
"How is that semi-good?!" Kodachi asked, horrified.
Rellram held up a finger as he made his point. "Hey, you're talking from a demon's perspective here, babe. Misery is good. Suicide is up there with cardinal sins as well. Only happy ending to your lack of presence, as far as I'm concerned. Although you know, there was a funny thing. Right before Ranma died, he lamented not having a relationship with a gymnast that knew how to laugh. Anyway, now about that deal… Hey! Where are you going?"
Kodachi, who had already begun to hurry away, turned back around to confront the demon. "Thanks to you, I now I know what I must do to set things right."
Rellram appeared confused. "When you say. 'Set things right' you do mean by signing your soul to me so you can gain the power to avenge yourself on all of the people that would have had the audacity to be happy if you hadn't existed, right?"
Kodachi shook her head viciously. "Don't be ridiculous. I'm going to stop drugging my brother so that he will become normal and win over Akane Tendou. Once my darling Ranma is forced to break up with her, I shall become his friend and comfort him in his time of trouble. Then, to prove my further sincerity, I shall encourage him to date those other two harridans in foredoomed relationships. Once they realize things aren't working out, he shall date the woman who at last has realized why she was wrong in the manner in which she had previously harassed him: me."
"Hey, now that sounds like a pretty good… wait a minute!" Rellram roared. "That's a terrible plan. I didn't show you all of that so that you could make everyone happy. I did it so you'll sign your soul over to me."
"Not a chance. I see my mistakes and can do things better now and ensure happiness for everyone."
Rellram fell to his knees and began begging, his tears literally flowing in buckets. "Please, oh please, please, please. Sign your soul over to me."
"I'll give you a calendar, just like banks do when you open a new account."
"Would you at least reconsidering killing yourself?"
"No!" With that Kodachi whipped her leg from out of his grasp and skipped away, laughing with genuine joy for the first time in months. How foolish she had been in acting like a spoiled child. She would become a nice person who would be more understanding of the people around them and not consider them beneath her notice from now on.
Rellram was left alone in the night, sobbing and falling prone as he pounded his fists into the ground. "Why does this always happen to me? I show them the future, and instead of getting angry at how much better everyone is without them, the idiots keep making everything better instead. It's not fair! WAHHH!"
He was still crying when a sympathetic voice said. "Oh, look at the poor… whatever he is."
Rellram paused enough in his tears to look at the newcomers before him. There were a half dozen, all-beautiful female teenagers dressed in skin-tight, scanty outfits that showed off their large bouncy breasts, shapely legs, and scandalous amounts of their buttocks as they bent low to peer more closely at the crying demon.
"Who, who are you?" Rellram blubbered out.
The girl who had spoken waved at her companions in a grand gesture that made her breasts wobble prodigiously. "We're the Virgin High School Cheerleading Squad. We're just randomly wandering about dark, lonely corners of the city without any form of protection or defenders, especially of the devil-hunting kind. Is there anything we can do to help you? You'll find we can be very accommodating."
"And limber," another girl added.
"I hope whatever we do makes me warm. It's so cold out, my braless nipples are almost ready to burst through my incredibly tight, flimsy white halter top," a third pointed out as she thrust her chest forward.
Rellram looked at all of the girls, especially their chests, all of which seemed to match the last speaker's current dilemma. Course decided, he rose to his feet, bowed before the girls, and did what he had to do.
The girls watched the tentacleless tentacle rape demon hurl himself over the edge of the bridge and into the abyss beyond.
Of all the people's lives he had encountered, Rellram's truly was the most woeful life of all.
Author's notes: Actually, besides "It's a Woeful Life", this probably owes as much to Gary Kleppe's delightful little spamfic, 'The Right Choice,' which stated the idea even better and with far more humor than what I just did here. As you might have noticed, I used pretty much word-for-word several of Brian's early passages in the opening, since they were appropriate and were useful in making the point. I just wanted to show that his idea could apply to anybody.
Back to real work.
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