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By Shade

Disclaimer: Ranma ½ and affiliates are the property of Rumiko Takahashi, Rifts and Phase World are owned by Palladium. Other references belong to their respective owners.

2-B: Just When You Thought Things Couldn't Get Any Worse

"What was with the gun though? I mean it's not like he really needs it."

Any subject was preferable to this newest complication in the Bet going on. Even the Bard had winced as they listened in on Thoth's explanation to Ranma of the exact nature of the Universal Compatibility Spell.

Apparently it permanently "altered" the victim in such a way as to allow them to consummate a relationship with a person of the opposite gender of virtually any humanoid race by compensating for any severe differences in size or genetics between the two.

The Ibis God confessed that it had never been intended for a CosmoKnight, though. There was no telling what side effects the magic might have on Ranma's cosmically charged body. He had to admit though it would probably be very interesting.

He even offered a handsome sum to be able to observe and record the results. Ranma politely turned him down.

"Hmm? Oh, you mean why didn't he just start blasting his way through like a one man army?"

"Yeah, I mean look at him. He's got the firepower, why doesn't he use it?"

"Same reason Rowan rarely uses his powers. It's the equivalent of painting a nice fat bulls eye on your back, while waving a sign around that says `Big threat here, please kill me!' Not to mention that it's not just overkill, it's extreme overkill. And that goes against the code of conduct for a CosmoKnight."

"Code of conduct?"

The Guardian closed his eyes and quietly counted to ten.

{Must… control… fist… of… death.}

"He's talking about that silly chivalry and honor thing."

"Oh! Why didn't you say so!?"

"Ahem, a code of honor is not a thing, nor is it silly. Just because SOME of us make it habit of fighting dirty in order to win, that's no reason to insult the ones who are civilized enough to have a sense of morals."

The Guardian glared at Shadow meaningfully.

Shadow ignored it; he knew that irked the knight more then anything else.

"I use whatever works. Too bad Ranma can't anymore."

"What do you mean?"

"The code of the CosmoKnight is more flexible then most. Basically your standard be good and protect the innocent package deal. However, part of the code also means keeping a low profile and at least attempting to do things the legal way."

"And if they don't?"

"They fall. That… would be a bad thing."

"So what about when the law doesn't work?"

"When that happens, then they pull out the heavy firepower and start kicking ass and taking names." (1)


"Ah sir, you are most unlucky."

The guide had heard a scream and arrived just in time to see a charred boy wearing a bandanna leap into one of the cursed springs. Not just any normal cursed spring either, this particular spring had a very ancient legend surrounding it.

Only the truly stupid people of the land, those who blamed their misfortunes on others and relied on violence to solve their problems ever fell into this spring. The spring of drowned…

"Hee-haw!!!" [Translation: "Ranma, this is all your fault!!!"]

… Jackass. (2)

-A Few Provinces Over

Genma was fleeing for his life.

If the Amazons caught him, then the only future he had was as a rug by the fireplace.

All he'd done was eaten one lousy feast! Was that any reason to go on the warpath?

Genma would have cursed his lousy luck, but he needed the all the air he had for running.

It was definitely time to leave China.

"Are you sure you didn't forget anything sir?"

"Yeah, I've got everything all packed up to go. You worry too much, Lo Shun. It's not good for you."

"Sorry Captain."

He hesitated, then gave her a quick hug.

"It's okay. I'm going to miss you fussing over me."


"My, such an interesting shade of red you're turning."

Hefting his two bags Ranma Saotome walked out to the hanger, whistling a cheerful little ditty. Behind him a very flustered Amazon tried to regain her composure.

"Good luck, Ranma." Tania's normally cheerful voice was subdued. The loss of the finest man any of them had ever met was hitting her the hardest out of the crew.

With longing eyes and aching hearts, they watched on the view-screens as their former commander's Avenger Power Armor descended toward the world below.

It was an empty planet, mostly dry, hot desert. Although the atmosphere was just barely within the minimal life sustaining range, its lack of any type of natural resources and distance from any easily reachable population center had insured that the planet remained uninhabited. It was too far from the normal trade routes for even pirates to use as a base. If there was a bright center to the universe this was probably the planet furthest from it.

"Okay, I'm here. Now what?"

Seeing no immediate answer forthcoming, Ranma settled down to wait.

He waited for an hour.

CosmoKnights were supposed to be invulnerable to extreme temperature changes.

He was roasting.

"Damn, it's hot."

Another three hours had passed.

He'd had to dismiss his Avenger back into its dimensional pocket to prevent the generators from overheating. Still no sign…

Patience was a warrior's virtue.

Ranma was rapidly reaching the limit of his.

This was getting ridiculous.

"Hey! I'm HERE!! Make with the Bippity Boppety Boo already!!!"

Silence answered him.

"Damn it! I wish something would happen!!"

Ranma's eyes widened as soon as the words left his mouth, he'd done it again.

You'd think after all this time, he would know better then to say something like that. When would he ever learn?

The ground beneath him collapsed.


A moment after he passed through the underground Rift it closed again with what suspiciously sounded like a giant burp.

-Back at Jusenkyo

A rip opened in the fabric of space and time once more. A truly alien mosaic of magic and quantum level energy deposited several tons of sand and grayish dirt onto one of the springs, filling it completely. Several seconds later a young man fell onto the small hill that had formed.

Right after that a backpack and good-sized suitcase crashed into the young man's noggin.

Ranma was back.

His arrival didn't go unnoticed.

Washuu's curiosity was piqued. Her sensors had just picked up a large dimensional anomaly that had lasted exactly 2.45 minutes. According to the data, something had come through it.

A familiar gleam filled her eye.

This was very interesting.

Sailor Pluto spit out her tea in surprise as she sensed the surge of power that marked the Rift's presence. And it originated from the same general region where the recent disturbance in the Earth's ley lines had come from.

Something had come to Earth. Something powerful… something dangerous.

She needed to find the Outer Senshi immediately.

Luna and Artemis were already meeting with the Inner Senshi.

The surge of power passed a certain temple. Belldandy, Urd and Skuld all blinked in surprise. Something was up; a call to the Almighty might be in order.

Mara was already on the phone with her superiors.

Ranma dusted himself off. As landings went, it hadn't been too bad.

He inhaled deeply.

He was back home. Well not really, looked like he was right back where had started from in China. But this was HIS Earth, no monsters or demons or killer aliens and having to save the world every couple of days.

At last, Ranma had finally gotten back to a normal world. The weirdness that had been dominating his life for the past four years was finally over.

If he'd been able to see into the future Ranma might not have been so relieved.

But for now, Life was Good.

Other forces were already in motion.


To be continued.

Author's notes:

  1. This is arguably the most fun part about being a CosmoKnight.
  2. Inspired by Peter Suzuki's fic, "Spring of Drowned Goblin" and Ukyo's classic line from the anime.

The Code of the CosmoKnight (Condensed version):

  • Defend the just and the good.
  • Defend the weak and innocent.
  • Defend nature.
  • Protect the Cosmic Forge.
  • Obey the law unless it's evil.
  • Fight Evil.
  • Never betray or abandon a friend or comrade.
  • Always keep your word.
  • Never give in to Evil.
  • Show mercy to those who deserve it.
  • Show respect where it is due.
  • Never taunt those weaker then you.
  • Die with Honor
Part 2-C
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