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Chapter 9

A Ranma ½ - Sailor Moon crossover story
by Dark Phoenix

Disclaimer: Ranma ½ and its characters and settings belong to Rumiko Takahashi, Shogakukan, Kitty, and Viz Video. Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon belongs to Takeuchi Naoko, Koudansha, TV Asahi, and Toei Douga, and DIC.

"Now that Usagi is famous, I think it'd be best if we left. Demon will have the whole region depopulated before long, too." I hadn't mentioned any of the conversation I'd overheard about Ami's condition. What was there to say? I'd gotten Ami pregnant. She knew about it, if she'd told her friends, and didn't seem to be acting any different. Mature and intelligent as my lover was, she was still a sixteen-year-old girl. In her situation, I would be flipping out. Whatever we decided to do with the kid, it wouldn't be on this planet; a place where animal eggs were given more attention than babies.

Demon gurgled happily, swinging a lamppost around trying to hit Rei's rat. The pokémon's massive frame must top at least twenty feet now. The wings, when unfolded, cast shadows over huge areas of ground, not unlike a large cloud. He, and I had finally learned Demon was a he, had figured out how to retract his two-foot long claws. I hope his growth slows down some, or he'll eat me out of house and home. My other pokémon were virtually forgotten with Demon's birth. I'm probably just going to give them away before we leave, or let Ami have them.

"But, Ranma, I have a worldwide tour to go on!" Usagi protested. Taking care of pokémon and living on her own had helped the girl to grow up quite a bit, but not enough.

"If you were to disappear right after winning the championship, then reappear next year to compete in the next one, don't you think it would make people think you were all mysterious and stuff?" Makoto asked. That was a pretty good idea, especially because by next year the girls would be strong enough to bring Usagi to PokéWorld without my help. I certainly have no intention of returning.

"Well, that does sound neat… but the Pokémon League is going to make a doll to look like me. Can we at least stay until they get it right? Please?" A few more days wouldn't hurt, unless Demon decided to raid the pokémon center. A little time to think about how to talk to Ami about the pregnancy would be good, too.

"Only a few more days," I answered. There was a loud crash, followed by a metallic screeching behind me. I whirled around, expecting to come under attack— I'd been getting complacent— only to see Demon using his lamppost to smash a large hole in the street. "Bad Demon, bad!" I shouted. I floated over to him, rising slowly until I could look him straight in his basketball-sized black eyes. I glared at him and asked, "What have I told you about smashing stuff? Bad Demon." I pointed at the pokémon and said, "No supper for you tonight." Do not say a word. Demon's lower lip began to tremble, for all of its meter-long length, and great big fist-sized tears gathered in his eyes. He snuffled and let out a high keening sound, revealing his foot long fangs. I couldn't stand to see the big guy cry like that, so I said gently, "All right Demon, you can have supper tonight, but this is your last warning. No more smashing other people's stuff!" Demon's tears disappeared like they'd never even existed and his big black lips split into a razor sharp grin of contentment.

As I descended to the ground and walked towards the Senshi, Demon spread his wings and took flight, nearly blowing me over with the gale-force wind kicked up by the takeoff. The Senshi were all grinning at me when I returned. Crap.

"Mama Ranma, you're so mean," teased Minako, who broke into giggles as I momentarily choked on my tongue.

"You shouldn't have gone so easy on him, Ranma," Rei chided, absentmindedly scratching her giant rat behind the ear.

I waved it off and said, "He's already bigger than almost every other kind of pokémon on this whole world, and not showing any sign that his growth will slow down or stop. I don't want to have a hundred foot pokémon decide that it doesn't love me anymore and try to make a meal out of me." I could take him down if Demon ever turned on me, but I doubt he'll ever do anything like that. "And he was crying," I added. The thing may look as evil as any true demon, but Demon had the heart of a puppy.

I caught sight of Ami giving me a considering look, very much unlike the mock looks of surprise and shock from the other Senshi. Yes, us two were definitely going to have a talk. Soon. As soon as I could figure out what to say, anyway.

"Ranma is an evil sorcerer?" Nabiki asked in confirmation to Ryoga's earlier comment. Genma had escaped from Akane as soon as she had stopped hitting him with her mallet. Ryoga just sat in a chair, looking none the worse for wear, even though Akane had tried to beat him into a pulp.

Ryoga nodded eagerly. They surrounded him. All three girls kept looking at him. Ryoga could barely breathe. "He cursed me to turn into a pig whenever I get splashed with cold water," Ryoga growled weakly. "That was the last time I fought him. The time before that, he made a demon appear." Ryoga shuddered. "It tried to eat me." He raised his tunic up above his chest. There was a trio of thick scars running from just below his collar to the waist of his left side.

Nabiki didn't believe a word of it. Ryoga himself seemed convinced that he spoke the truth, though. "Are you sure you weren't attacked by a bear?" she asked as she walked to the sink and filled a glass with water.

"Bears don't breathe fire and fly," Ryoga answered. "Hey, you don't believe me!" he realized.

Nabiki was back with the water. She didn't wait for permission, immediately upending the contents on Ryoga's head. The boy disappeared, leaving only a pile of clothes with a little moving lump at the bottom. A minute later, a small pot-bellied pig wormed it way from under the clothing.

"Well, I'll be…" Nabiki sighed in surprise.

"Oh, my, aren't you cute!" Kasumi swept the pig into her arms and began rocking it like a baby.

Akane started screaming.

With time to prepare, I arranged for the portal from PokéWorld to be vertical instead of horizontal. Falling face first in the dirt isn't my idea of fun. I had Demon and Slammer, with my still unused Gyarados, stored in pokéballs, along with some supplies recommended by one of the Joys that would help to care for the creatures. The other Senshi made their own arrangements. Usagi, unwilling to give up any of her army— and I do mean that quite literally— had two duffel bags full of pokéballs. She's spent the entire night carefully labeling each ball, and looked less than happy to be awake.

"No one's forgetting anything?" I asked. That would be great, having to jump back to retrieve a shoe or something— not that I would do it.

True to character, Usagi ran upstairs and came back down with another pokéball. "Wouldn't want to forget Psyduck," she explained.

The mirror portal was open five minutes later, and we stepped through into another dimension. This wasn't our home, either. That meant the last choice was the money shot. At least we didn't appear out of midair in the middle of traffic or anything.

I didn't notice anything unusual at first, busy as I was trying to feed Demon. It was when I reflexively attempted to draw energy to replenish that spent on flying. I got nothing. I could feel the power, I could even see it if I tried, but it would not obey my will. This is worse than it sounds.

"Girls," I roared, risking the use of some of my remaining power to make my voice audible to the spread out Senshi, "don't use any magic!" Demon's huge expressive face began to look anxious so I returned him to his pokéball. Before going in search of the girls, I drew my Crystal from within my arm and pocketed it. I don't even want to imagine how painful having it within my arm would be when my power finally bled away.

I found Rei and Usagi, silently gathering them to me. The other three found us while we were looking for them. They all looked confused and a little afraid. "I don't know what kind of shitball this world is, but it's got some seriously screwed up energy problems. Save all your energy for as long as possible, because you won't be able to get any more for a while." If only the Silver Imperium Crystal still worked with Usagi's magic, she could have kept us charged. As things now stood, even with the power of my Crystal backing me, I didn't have enough energy to key Usagi's crystal to my aura.

Usagi nodded. "I thought something felt odd." Her brow furrowed in concentration. "I can't draw any energy at all."

I had the others try and they all came up with similar results. We still had the pokémon if the natives got hostile, if there were natives. We, however, didn't have a way home. I wasn't going to mention that fact until later. Usagi obviously had the same thought I had. She started crying. Then I had to tell everyone why she was crying. My life blows ass.

No nice comfortable magical dome or cushion of air for us. Nope, just hard ground and hungry mosquitoes. I used my chi to start a fire for warmth. Yeah, I still have that, for as much good as it does us. Ami beckoned to me. Eager to get away from the gloomy girls, I followed her until we were far enough away that even the occasional night breeze wouldn't blow any part of our conversation across the meadow we were camped out in back to the girls.

"Ranma, if magic doesn't work here, why is your ring still working?" Ami asked. I hadn't even thought of that!

I kicked in the mystical senses and scanned the little band of white metal around my finger. Damn. The minor enchantment, which I still hadn't figured out, was nearly gone. If I had thought about it soon enough and deactivated the enchantment, there might have been enough power left in it for me to open a portal home big enough for me to squeeze through. I could have easily retrieved the girls then. Now… well, now it was practically useless and I would be back to being a guy full time in a couple hours. Good thing the Senshi couldn't attack me.

Ah, all those damned pokémon. My life blows ass.

"It's almost dead," I replied. "This ought to be interesting." I still had Demon in my pocket. If necessary, I could have him hold the girls off long enough to explain the whole fucked up situation.

I must have sounded pretty pitiful. Ami reached out and patted my hand reassuringly. "Let's go back and I'll explain everything to them. They'll understand, I'm sure."

Ami and me walking back into camp holding hands (Ami's idea, I assure you) got the others' attention faster than if I had grown an extra head right there on the spot. That's not saying much with them in their present mood.

"This is very important, so pay attention," Ami said, looking pointedly at Usagi. The blonde girl stopped polishing the pokéball in her hand. "Good. Everyone remember that man we fought the night before Setsuna arranged for Ranma to teach us magic?" They nodded. And Ami began to explain, all the while sitting a little ahead of me on the ground, protectively, I think. She finished a lot faster than I would have, but by using just the right words to get the point across.

I did my part then. Instead of changing the ring black, which would have used the remaining charge, I slid it off my finger. There were a couple of gasps as I changed back into a guy. No pokémon battle orders, though. That was good. "Hey," I said. "It's still me, you know. Like Ami said, Luna just goofed up. It's not really her fault, her brain is a lot smaller than a person's, after all." I probably shouldn't have insulted Usagi's pet/advisor. Then again, why not? The cat had been at fault.

I was stared at for a few minutes, until Rei, of all people, said, "I always did think you were strange, even for a girl who had demons for friends. It makes sense now that I know you're a boy. No self-respecting woman would scratch herself like you do."

Wow, I'd expected her to sic her rat on me at any time, not acknowledge me as something other than evil incarnate.

Usagi's eyes narrowed and she glanced from me to Ami and back again. "So… you two…" She made a lewd gesture. "Ah," and an airheaded smile of such magnitude as to almost need sunblock in its presence appeared. "Ranma is the father!"

I felt like slapping myself. No, they weren't going to try to kill me; they were going to embarrass me to death.

Ami looked at Usagi in utter confusion, then at me. "Uh, Usagi, what on Earth are you talking about?" she eventually asked.

"But… I overheard you and Professor Oak talking about the baby, and you said that you didn't know who the father was… and… Oops, I think I made a booboo." The meatball head hung her head in abject embarrassment, her face crimson.

No one could even begin to appreciate the relief I was feeling at that moment. Ami actually laughed, a little forced, but a laugh nonetheless. "The Professor and I were trying to figure out what combination of known or possibly undiscovered pokémon mated to spawn Demon."

With the flippers gone, Setsuna could finally walk properly again. Using the Time Gate no longer caused her agony since she didn't have hundreds of different energy patterns rampaging through her body. Ranma would pay. The rules banned her from contacting her future self for direct aid or information, but they didn't say anything about not traveling to the future herself.

First, before making the trip, she stopped by the drugstore and bought a tube of hemorrhoid cream. The silver mists of the Gate parted before her and she used its magic to zoom in on Usagi's classroom. No Usagi. She checked all the others' classes too. Nothing. Something could have interfered with the Senshi and kept them busy, or Ranma could just as easily murdered them all and voided the pact. Well, Ranma would suffer for eternity at her hands if that were true. Homes and hangouts came next. Finally, desperately, Setsuna opened herself fully to the Gate's temporal magic and allowed her mind to be buffered by the Winds of Time while she searched for the Senshi. Impossibly, that search turned up nothing also. If the Senshi had died, they would have left remains, even if only a few scattered particles, but there was NOTHING. They had no future, not even one as worm food. If Setsuna had not had clear access to the past of each of the Senshi, she could not have even been sure they had ever existed.

What had Ranma done to them?

I've always been a sorcerer first and a martial artist second, but I'd still hazard to guess that not ten people on Earth could challenge me in straight physical combat. Chi is a major factor for the truly elite martial artists, and would have been for me if I hadn't had so much access to magic.

Early the morning after the revelation of my true identity, I awoke and began reacquainting myself with my chi. It was still there, like always, just not overly flexible due to inactivity. The simpler exercises taught to be by Happosai were good ways to get the energy pumping. I had moved through those and on to Amazon attack augmentation, finally, and when the girls were greeting the morning, to my father's forbidden techniques. I'll say this for the old bastard; he wasn't a complete imbecile in his younger days. I'm glad mom gave me a copy of the scrolls that contained the techniques before the cancer got her. Bad memories.

"You said not to use our magic," Makoto accused a little suspiciously. The Senshi were handling my true form much better than expected. If I had known they'd take it so well, I could have been a man a hell of a lot more than I had the past four months. "Shouldn't you follow your own rule?"

I didn't turn around to face her immediately, toweling myself off and putting my shirt on first. "That wasn't magic," I answered with a smirk. "I was using my chi. It's not as powerful or as versatile as my magic, but it does replenish itself."

"Like in anime?" she asked.

I nodded. "Mostly. I can't pull off anything like on Dragonball Z. I'm closer to Fist of the North Star levels in that respect, I'd say. I don't know how long we'll be stuck here without magic. If you want, I'll start training you to manipulate your chi. The process takes years, but it it's worth the effort."

"I'll try," Ami commented as she sat up and brushed the fur from Makoto's big dog off of her clothes. That little puppy had gotten something like ten times bigger when it evolved.

The martial arts lessons I'd been giving the Senshi back on Earth had been meant to eventually lead up to some rudimentary chi training, in order to give them the slightly expanded senses that make gathering energy for magic easier. Now, when they couldn't use their magic and pokémon can't always be relied upon, they'd be getting more than the basics.

"Tonight, after we stop and make camp, we can begin the breathing exercises. Today we should just try to ascertain where we are. And I need to feed Demon." Not to mention get us some food. The few supplies we had brought wouldn't last long.

Demon was eager to fill his truck-sized stomach and decided that my walking speed was too slow. I fit in his hand comfortably enough. He was about to carry us into the forest when I stopped him. If he went crashing through, knocking down trees, there wouldn't be so much as a squirrel to be found.

I pointed up and said, "From the air, Demon, from the air." He nodded his understanding, and with a great whoosh of displaced air, we were aloft. The trees here were not closely spaced and the canopy was easily seen through. Gliding silently, Demon riding invisible thermal updrafts, I spotted a dear. Before I could signal Demon to pounce, my pokémon opened its maw and a thin jet of flame flew from between its sword-like teeth and burned the dear's head cleanly off. The carcass had barely fallen to the ground when we landed. Demon sounded like a tree limb hitting the ground, not the ten-ton monster he really was.

I'd been wondering when Demon would begin to manifest the fire and dark (whatever that meant) attack powers that Professor Oak's computer had predicted. I think that had been the flamethrower.

"You can go ahead and have this one, Demon. We can get one for us little humans later," I laughed. Demon was eyeing the surrounding trees hungrily, but he needed to eat meat too, not just wood fiber.

Demon shook his head and nudged the dear carcass with his left arm. "Raaaaaannnn Maaaaaaagh." My mouth snapped shut audibly and I stared at Demon in shock. He grinned at me and tore a tree out of the ground. He had talked! Demon had talked to me! He'd said my name!

Demon had eaten half the tree and all of its leaves when I finally regained enough sense to dress the dear. It was a big beast, and would feed us for days. Demon could have swallowed it in one gulp.

"Go on, Demon," I called to my pokémon. None of the girls believed me when I told them that Demon had said my name. I was about to prove them wrong. "What's my name?" I asked, pointing to myself.

"Raaaaaannnn Maaaaaagh," Demon spoke, his voice a whisper compared to his normal full-throated, earth-shaking roar. "Raaaaaannnn Maaaaaagh," he repeated. I patted his flank affectionately. Hey, I never had a puppy when I was a kid; I'm just making up for lost time.

"Hahahahaha! Told ya!" Demon's much deeper, rock grating laugh echoed mine.

"How come my pokémon never talk to me?" Usagi asked. "It's not fair!" And she started to cry.

Minako tried to comfort Usagi by saying, "I did hear about this talking Meowth when I was working at the pokémon center. You have one of those, don't you? You could teach it to talk."

Usagi wailed, "I traded my Meowth for a Bellsprout! Wah!"

I let Demon fly around a while so his trees could properly digest, then put him in his pokéball. Once Usagi was reasonably calm, we broke camp and went off in search of civilization and a means of returning home.


To be continued.

Author's Notes: I've had Ranma's personality changing slowly throughout the story, but I think it'll being pretty static from now on. C&C welcome at dark_phoneix@hotmail.com

Chapter 10
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