“Blood Calls Out For Blood”
A Ranma ½ / Sailor Moon Crossover
Sailor Moon and all related properties are properties of Naoko Takeuchi. Ranma ½ and all related properties are properties of Rumiko Takahashi. This story is inspired by Vaughan Stevens’ “Recruiting” and I owe him a debt of gratitude for a good story and inspiration.
Chapter 7 –
Two Minds and Just One Heart
Kaiba stared in the mirror as Setsuna slipped quietly behind her. “Kaiba-chan, are you going to be ok?” the eldest Senshi asked with true concern.
The newest Senshi looked back at Setsuna. “We’re not sure, Setsuna-san. Things are so different now. We’ve changed so much.” She turned toward her and leaned back against the sink. “We haven’t completely integrated with each other.”
Setsuna barely restrained a curse as she nodded. “I see… I’m sorry.”
Kaiba shook her head. “Actually it is helping a little. What part of us that was Ami finally has someone she can speak to and trust implicitly, and What part of us was Ranma finally has someone he can discuss his actions with, trust, and… well, show his true self to.”
Setsuna raised an eyebrow. “I see. Very curious indeed. But even so, we’re all very sorry about this. And we do hope that you can come to trust us as you seem to trust, well, each other.”
Before Kaiba could speak however, a small pink blur rushed into the open door, hugging Kaiba about the waist tightly. “Kaiba-‘baachan!”
Kaiba looked down to see a little girl with bright pink hair and red eyes staring up at her with a contented expression. “Setsuna?” She asked, confused. The girl seemed a bit upset, but looked to a nodding Setsuna.
Setsuna nodded to Chibi-Usa then replied to Kaiba. “This is Chibi-Usa, Usagi’s daughter from the future. Evidently you were, or will be, one of her best friends.” A slight hint of amusement crossed the woman’s face as she looked at the two.
Kaiba blinked in surprise. “Future, huh?” She then looked at Chibi-Usa and hesitantly put a hand on her head between the unusual-shaped odangos. “Nice to meet ya, kiddo… again I guess.” She said a bit sheepishly.
“So, Kaiba,” Setsuna said with a soft smile, “You’re going on a date with Akane?” This caught the pink-haired girl’s attention as she looked at Kaiba.
Kaiba blushed a bit. “It’s not…” She paused and sighed. “Yeah, I guess I am. But I could use some help getting ready…”
Setsuna paused, then grinned a bit, almost amused. “Haruka, could you come over here…”
Akane stared in the mirror, hands gripping the sink tightly. “Nabiki, how can I do this?”
Nabiki smirked ever so slightly, a bit of her old humor returning. “Well, you’ll want to dress rather casual, it would draw less attention.”
Akane looked down. “It’s not that. Can… Can I deal with Ranma the way he is? Can I-“
“Can you date another girl? Can you live with another girl? Can you live with Kaiba?” Nabiki interrupted. “I don’t know. I can’t give you the answer to that one. It’s something only you can answer.”
Akane sank a little. “I don’t know either. But Ranm… Kaiba chose this. This isn’t like the Chisuiiton, or the Cat’s Tongue or things like that. H… She chose this. She’ll be a girl for the rest of her life.”
Nabiki nodded. “You have to have thought of it before, though, right? After all those things, when Ranma could have been trapped as a girl?”
Akane closed her eyes. “But inside, Ranma was always a guy. Kaiba… I don’t know anymore.”
Nabiki stared into her eyes. “Then don’t you think you should find out?”
Akane looked at Nabiki and sighed. “Alright. How…”
“Should you dress? Come with me.”
Chibi-Usa smiled as she followed Kaiba and Haruka into a room, as Haruka picked out some rather stylish, if somewhat androgynous clothing. “Thanks, Haruka.” Kaiba said as she sat down, Chibi-Usa automatically crawling into her lap and relaxing.
“Hey, no problem, Kaiba.” She paused. “You know, that hair’ll make it tough, but…” She looked through the clothing thoughtfully.
“So, Kaiba-‘baachan, what’s Akane like?” Chibi-Usa asked, a hint nervously.
Kaiba did not seem to notice the edginess as she looked at Chibi-Usa, trying to get used to the ‘baa-chan’. “Well, she’s…” Kaiba paused as she tried to think of how to describe her. “She’s stubborn. Whenever she gets her mind on something, she refuses to give up. She has a bit of a temper problem…” Kaiba marveled at how little insult she put into the words as she continued. “Usually focused on me.”
Chibi-Usa giggled a little, as if Kaiba’s words were the punchline to a joke.
Kaiba shook her head at the laughter as Haruka gave her some clothing. “Sometimes she’d smile, and it was the most wonderful thing in the world. But most of the time she was angry…” A sigh escaped her.
Haruka looked at Kaiba and said, “Don’t worry, Kaiba. You’ll always have friends, no matter what.” Kaiba nodded to the encouragement as she moved to the bathroom to change into the clothing.
Chibi-Usa looked at Haruka. “I hope ‘Baa-chan’ll be ok.” She said gently.
Haruka nodded as Michiru stepped in. “So do I.”
Michiru looked at Haruka. “Setsuna asked me to come by. Need any help?”
Haruka gestured to the bathroom. “She’s changing right now.”
Michiru sat down carefully, face lined with thought. “Haruka, I was thinking about something.”
Haruka raised an eyebrow. “Do you have an idea?”
Michiru nodded gently. “You might be able to help her a lot. You’re a woman, but you like a lot of the things that Ranma liked. Perhaps you can teach her what you need to know. About being a woman, and being one of us.”
Haruka tapped her chin thoughtfully. “Good idea.” She barely stifled a weak chuckle. “I’ve got a feeling I don’t have to teach her one thing.”
Michiru looked at her confused, then blushed a bit. “Oh… right.” She paused then sighed. “I just hope this Akane can understand what Kaiba’s going through.”
The bathroom door opened, then Michiru looked at Kaiba. “This will be interesting, I think.” She remarked.
Akane paced nervously, her soft golden gown flowing about her with every motion. “Nabiki, I don’t know if I can do this,” she fretted.
Nabiki shook her head softly. “Imouto-chan, relax. This is Ranma we’re talking about. She’s probably more nervous than you are. Hell, I think she’s probably more nervous than you are.”
Akane looked back to Nabiki. “Are you sure? This might not be Ranma anymore.”
Nabiki caught the tense tone in Akane’s voice and sighed. So that’s what the problem is… “Akane, look at me.” As her younger sister looked toward her, she spoke, “Who wouldn’t change after what’s happened to Ranma? But if she’s willing to go on a date, don’t you think that perhaps the part of Ranma you know is still there?”
You know were the words Nabiki said, but Akane knew what she meant. She loved Ranma. She could admit it now, even if it were only to herself. But was that part of Ranma still within this new woman? For that matter, could she love that part of Ranma, despite the fact that both shared the same gender?
The sound of a car outside the dojo startled Akane out of her reverie, and spawned another army of butterflies within her stomach. A moment later, a careful rapping upon the door was heard. Akane opened the door and blinked in surprise.
Standing before her was a study in conflicts. A rather petite woman looked back at her, her long red and blue hair flowing behind her, only restrained in a ponytail. Sheathing her body was a well-fitted black tuxedo, traditionally a male outfit, yet it seemed to, for some strange reason, bring out the femininity within her. Her feet were capped in black high-heeled shoes.
Yet it was the eyes that caught Akane’s attention. They were almost mirrors of her own eyes, bearing the same fear and love her own eyes unknowingly bore. Within them were a storm of doubts. She’s almost terrified, Akane thought in the back of her mind. Almost as terrified as I am.
“Kaiba.” Akane stumbled over the new name.
A tall blond woman in a grey suit stood behind Kaiba, and Kaiba turned. “Akane, this is Ten’oh Haruka. Haruka, this is Tendou Akane.”
The woman seemed to be imminently comfortable in her suit, yet somehow carried an elegance. Akane suspected it was her that aided Kaiba in her clothing for the night. “Yes, I remember the other day, Ten’oh-san, I’m glad to have met you.” Akane replied as she bowed.
Haruka returned the bow gently. “It’s an honor to meet you as well, Tendou-san. Kaiba’s spoken very highly of you.”
Akane felt a twinge of relief and fear at those words, for the same reasons. It sounded like Kaiba changed, but how much had she?
Kaiba smiled a little, though it was still that nervous half-smile she bore since the beginning. Akane noticed the fact that Kaiba had not yet taken her eyes off of her.
Haruka smiled a bit. Oh boy… those two are looking at each other like Michiru and I used to. She hated to interrupt, but coughed gently. “Kaiba-kun, we need to go, the reservation is in thirty minutes.”
Kaiba blinked and nodded. “Alright. Come on, Akane,” she said softly as she gently took Akane’s arm in her own, as they were led to Haruka’s car.
The restaurant was a rather formal Italian, as Haruka dropped the two off and left them to their own devices. As they approached the maitre d’, he nodded. “Welcome. Ms. Meiou informed me you would be arriving. Follow me, please.” Akane looked at Kaiba in confusion, but Kaiba just looked a little astonished. Setsuna’s sure… efficient? The two followed the maitre d’ to their table on an open veranda. The moon shown brightly upon them, yet the building shielded them from any weather-related problems. There were no other occupied tables about them, thus letting the two speak unheard after the maitre d’ left.
Kaiba looked into Akane’s eyes and said, “So, how are you?” She asked, the first words she spoke since the two left the dojo.
Akane looked at her, nibbling her lip, before finally admitting, “I’m scared, Kaiba.”
Kaiba looked down and sighed. “I am too.” She admitted, surprising Akane. “I’ve changed so much, and it’s hard to put it all together. But what I told you the other day is true. I do love you, Akane. Even if you can’t deal with me, know that.”
Akane closed her eyes. “I know. I think I’ve known for a while, even if I could never admit it. But I don’t know this Kaiba. C… can you tell me about her?”
Kaiba blinked. “Well, let’s see.” She looked down. “This is hard. I… Well, I guess I’m trying to fight off father’s less favorable teachings. It’s not easy but I’ve a lot of help.”
Akane nodded slowly. “I see.” She said softly and looked at her. “What are you going to do about your father?”
Kaiba tried not to flinch, and didn’t quite succeed. “I don’t know. I don’t know how he is going to react. Probably not well.”
Akane frowned. “If he tries to break us up, I’m going to hurt him.”
A bit of hope crossed Kaiba’s expression. “I won’t let him. Even if I have to stop being a Saotome, I’m not going to let him do that.”
A nervous look crept onto Akane’s face as she replied, “I hope it doesn’t come to that. But if you do, I’ll support you, no matter what.”
Kaiba relaxed a bit and took her hands gently in her own, staring gratefully into her eyes.
The evening went beautifully from then, until the two left, arm in arm. Things would still be difficult for the two, but at least this night, there was peace.
Setsuna sat back, a book in her hands. She looked at the words but did not read them. Her mind was, for the first time in a long while, in a jumble. . o O (I really hope nothing went wrong. Kaiba deserves this. Not to mention how important it is… Oh hell, forget the ramifications for once, Setsuna. For once, Kaiba can become more than she was.)
Hotaru entered the room, tapping Setsuna’s arm. “Setsuna-mama?”
She flinched and looked toward Hotaru. “Oh… Hello, Hotaru-chan. What’s on your mind?”
Hotaru sat down and sighed. “Where is Kaiba going to stay?” She asked.
Setsuna paused. “I think we’ll have to clean out the extra guest room.” She admitted.
Hotaru nodded. “I’ll be glad to help.” She walked toward said room, and then asked, “Setsuna-mama, you sound worried. What’s wrong?”
Setsuna began to place some things in a box to move to the attic. “I’ve been watching Kaiba, and Ranma, for a very long time now. And I guess I just regret not being able to stop… well, stop the trainwreck that is her life.”
Hotaru frowned a bit worriedly. “Trainwreck? That bad?”
Setsuna closed her eyes for a long moment. “Worse. I keep telling myself that joining Ranma with Ami was the best thing for both of them. And I’m just hoping I’m right. My future self won’t say anything about it, and I’ve just got this feeling that I’m missing something important.”
Before Hotaru could reply, their communicators both beeped. “Everyone, we’ve got something attacking a music store. I’ll need some help,” Minako said over the communicator.
Both the youngest and the eldest Senshi sighed as they looked to each other. “We’re on our way, Minako,” she replied as Hotaru set what she had aside. “Let’s go, Hotaru-chan.”
Kaiba led Akane to the door of the house, face still a little bright pink. “Thank you, Akane. I think this is the first time we have ever had a chance to talk. I mean really talk, without the cows, or raving psychotics or whathaveyou.”
Akane blushed a bit and nodded. “You’re welcome, R… Kaiba.” A sigh escaped the girl as she said, “This is going to take some getting used to.”
Kaiba nodded gently. “That’s why we’ll just take it a step at a time,” she replied softly. At this time, a car drove up to the gate of the Dojo.
“Kaiba?” Haruka called from the car. The two looked from the doorstep, both bright red from embarrassment. “Kaiba, we have to get going,” she said.
Kaiba looked confused, then nodded. “Alright.” She then looked to Akane. “I’ll talk to you later…” She paused, then quickly gave her a kiss on the cheek before rushing off to the car, leaving a stunned Akane on the doorstep.
“You two make a nice couple,” Haruka remarked as she pulled away from the dojo.
“Thank you, Haruka. You’re early though. Is something wrong?” The part of Kaiba that was Ami picked up on the timing of the arrival, while that part of Ranma picked up on the tense anticipation that she had seen far too often in fights.
Haruka sighed gently. “There’s something attacking a music store downtown. Minako needs some help, and perhaps you could see what we can do… and what you can do.”
Kaiba nodded hesitantly. Before, she would have jumped into the fight. Now, things took more contemplation. If this creature was of the same kind that attacked her friends, her predecessor, then things needed a bit more thought. She also did not know what she was capable of yet. She knew she could still practice her art, but would it be enough? She also knew almost nothing of her own abilities as a planetary warrior. The car stopped as Michiru slipped into the seat next to Haruka. “How was the date, Kaiba?”
Kaiba nodded. “Ok…” she said, mind rapt in contemplation.
The two in the front seat looked to each other for a moment, but before words could be said, they arrived a few blocks from the store. They all piled out, and slipped into the shadows. “Alright, Kaiba… you know what to do,” Haruka said.
Michiru placed a gentle hand on Kaiba’s shoulder. “We believe in you, Kaiba-chan.”
Nervously, Kaiba closed her eyes and grasped at her bracers beneath the tuxedo’s sleeves. “Mercury Power Makeup…” She whispered under her breath, triggering her transformation. The light caressed her body as she transformed from a mere mortal, to something beyond… the apparel of a planetary warrior rippled up her body caressingly as the power flooded through her.
Mercury opened her eyes to look at her teammates, who changed as well. “Al… alright. Let’s go.” She said quietly, as the three took to the rooftops, approaching the scene of the crime.
Sailor Venus crouched down behind a rack as dozens of plastic blades were thrown her way. The Decapitator was grabbing the compact discs that lay strewn about and hurled them with unerring accuracy, and it was only Venus’s heightened agility that prevented her from suffering grievous wounds. As it was, two people were already down, one beheaded, another missing his right leg below the knee. The creature made it’s way through the store, and Venus wished she hadn’t looked upon it. The head was that of some nightmarish version of a mantis, with immense mandibles. Each arm was covered in a metallic carapace, with a pair of scythe-like blades extending from the elbow forward, sidecar to a pair of clawed hands. Each hand, at the moment, was occupied with hurling the discs, while the blades carved their way through anything that got in it’s way. Each of it’s four legs were massive, and ended in a triangle of claws, tearing huge furrows through the linoleum with every step.
Her first attempt to attack had failed miserably, as her Crescent Beam Smash merely dug a small gouge in it’s arm that only served to irritate the creature. From that point to this, she had been acting as a diversion, letting the remaining customers and staff evacuate the building. It had been ten minutes since she called everyone, and no one had appeared yet. I only hope someone gets here soon, Minako thought to herself. Suddenly, her line of sight became almost nothing, as a thick cloud of mist filled the store. It can’t be… Sailor Venus thought to herself.
But it was. The trio of Senshi slipped into the store quickly under the cover of Mercury’s Shabon Spray. Then Venus could feel three presences about her. “Venus, are you alright?” Uranus hissed.
Venus nodded. “Yes… but that thing is still out there.”
Mercury spoke in a voice as cold as the near side of her planet. “That thing is ours.” She said in that chilling, dual-toned voice, as she slipped back into the fog.
“Mercury, get back here!”
The Decapitator swore in a language not heard this side of the nine hells as it tried to peer through the fog. It knew that it’s foe was there, but could not tell where it was. When it found the prey, however, it would delight in dismembering the filthy fleshbag as painful…
Before the fiend could finish the thought, however, a fierce pain surged right up along it’s shoulder, as the creature suffered it’s own dismemberment. With surgical precision and evenness, it’s right arm was cut cleanly from the limb. It shrieked out, then spit out vile imprecations as it hurled discs with it’s remaining hand, while trying to concentrate long enough to regrow it’s missing limb.
The Sailor Senshi are famed for their somewhat longwinded declarations before a fight. So this seemed somewhat out of place. But the creature looked up at a silhouette in the mist that gave the shortest speech ever given by their kind, in a voice that sang like a choir of angels… yet promised hellish torment. “You die. Painfully.”
The warrior then charged, and began a fusillade of punches, kicks, vacuum waves and other attacks. This was joined by a bombardment of other attacks from five other Senshi a moment after. The creature screamed in utter agony as the first warrior systematically crushed every limb inch by inch, before hacking it off with a vacuum blade. It tried to fight back, and, were it not for the constant pounding from the other warriors, might have succeeded. Instead, the monstrosity was beaten to with a millimeter of it’s existence, before Mercury waved them all off and knelt, placing her fingers to lift the now mandible-less head upward. “This is for Ucchan,” She spoke in a quiet whisper, staring into the creature’s compound eyes, before backing up, and building greenish-black ki between her hands.
A strangled scream was heard for blocks as the Decapitator spent it’s final moment of existence caressed by depression and anger fuelled ki.
As the Senshi pulled back and returned to their civilian guise a few miles away in a park, Minako, a faint green tinge crossing her face at her partner’s brutality, asked, “What the hell was that about?”
Kaiba’s eyes bored holes into Mina’s. “That thing killed one person and permanently crippled another. It’s kind killed us and three of our closest friends. It got off lightly.”
Setsuna shivered at the malice in her ally’s quiet tone and placed a hand on Kaiba’s shoulder. “Kaiba-chan, perhaps you should get some rest,” she said as she placed a hand on Kaiba’s shoulder. The woman turned toward Setsuna, eyes dark and burning… then glazed as she sagged. Haruka barely caught her as she collapsed.
Michru rushed to Kaiba’s side. “Kaiba? Are you alright?”
Setsuna blinked and then swore, kneeling next to the girl. “Hotaru-chan…” The violet-eyed girl needed no prompting, as she already was at Kaiba’s side as Setsuna was calling for her.
Haruka stared at Kaiba. “What the hell happened back there? Ami never had powers like that.”
“Those weren’t Mercury’s powers. Those were techniques of Ranma’s school. As for what happened, Kaiba used her own power to fuel them. She’s now almost depleted. Damn it,” Setsuna swore as she explained. “I knew that thing went down too easy. Kaiba overdid it. Haruka, go get the car.”
<What kind of stunt were you trying to pull back there?> A voice called out.
<That thing deserved to die. It was a murderer of a race of murderers.> It’s counterpart replied, voice chilly.
<Maybe. But did you ever think to pace yourself? Did you want us to die again?>
<… I’m sorry. I overreacted. I couldn’t help it. Those things killed Ucchan. Ryouga. Almost killed my mother.>
<You just keep getting worse and worse… We need time to relax, to think, to merge. And they just won’t let up, will they?>
<What good will we do if we end up killing ourselves taking them out? I know you’re upset. Just try to calm down a bit.>
<Alright. I hope they’re not too mad at us.>
Setsuna was swearing up imprecations in Irish Gaelic. Difficult language to speak, but cursing in it sounded perfect for her mood at the moment. “Damn it, Kaiba… you have to be more careful.”
Chibi-Usa looked at Setsuna. “You shouldn’t be swearing, Pu-chan,” the diminutive princess scolded as she stroked Kaiba’s hair softly.
“I’m sorry, Usa-chan. It’s just that she went off half-cocked and almost got herself killed.” Setsuna said, sighing as she sat down. “If you and I didn’t know any better, I swear this was a bad idea.”
Chibi-Usa nodded. “So you’ve said so many times. You had to do it. Even if you don’t know why. You say that all the time to me back home.”
Setsuna nodded quietly as she took Kaiba’s hand in hers. “I just hate having to let this train wreck play out when I know I could have stopped it. Even if I know I can’t stop it.”
The princess shook her head. “It’ll be alright. Kai-chan forgave you.”
Setsuna sighed and nodded. The little one wouldn’t have said it if it weren’t true and if she wasn’t allowed to. It didn’t help much, however. She muttered to herself, or perhaps to her future self, in Gaelic, “I’m a real bitch, I know that, right?”
Haruka slipped into the room. “Is she doing any better?” Setsuna shook her head and sighed. “Setsuna, how did she do what she did?”
Setsuna just barely managed not to flinch. “Simple, really. Saotome Ranma spent all but the first four years of his life learning under the most sadistic son of a bitch teacher in the world,” she explained, ignoring the glare by Chibi-Usa for the profanity, “then spent the last two years under incredibly hostile conditions that seemed engineered for him to either completely lose his mind, or become a living weapon. Or both. Everything in his life was intended solely either to be training or a challenge to hone his skills.”
“Tell me this sadist isn’t still alive,” Haruka said, outraged.
“Yes, he is,” Setsuna replied. “Saotome Genma is still alive.”
Haruka stared. “His own family?”
“Father,” Setsuna corrected.
One could almost see the flames ignite in Haruka’s eyes. “His own father?! What the hell? Well, he won’t…”
“Be touched. If Kaiba wants retribution, that’s her choice. Would you want to take that from her?” Setsuna asked archly.
Haruka frowned, then backed down. “Alright. But I’ll be in line to help her out.”
“One long line, Haruka.” Setsuna remarked.
“Alright saved a place for all of us.”
Author’s note: Sorry about the wait on the end of this chapter, guess I’ve just been scatterbrained lately. The last few lines were a sentiment I had for a while. Despite all Ranma’s enemies, he does have a few friends. Not to mention all the people Genma’s managed to tick off along the way.
As for Setsuna, yes, she’s showing a lot more emotion, but she’s doubting herself. She doesn’t like the fact that she’s partially responsible for the pain she’s put Kaiba through.
As for the seeming ease in which Kaiba took out the Decapitator, it’s simply because Kaiba’s going all out. Of course, she’s paying the price for it as well. She barely knows any of Mercury’s abilities, but she does know hers. Even if this body isn’t ready for them yet.