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-- Child of the Goddess! --
Disclaimer: All characters, and such are the copyrights and property of their respective owners. I claim no ownership of any character and such in any way."" = Spoken words* = ThoughtsPower. Humans strive to have power over their environment. To have the power to do things they want, when they want. However power comes in many forms. Most power is perceived power. We perceive that we have power in some fashion or another. But there is also another type of power. The power of energy and the ability to manipulate it. Very few humans have this kind of power. But those that have it, are amongst the strongest of us all.It had been a week since the battle with Saffron and Ranma couldn't help but do something he'd done very little in his life... Think... He had plenty of time as he sat on the boat which was taking him and several others back to Japan. Looking around at the others, he couldn't help but wonder what the future would hold for him now that this latest event had occurred.All the crew with him had been giving him a wide berth since the incident. Shampoo, Mousse, Ryoga, and Cologne. Even Soun and his Father. All had the look of awe and fear in their eyes when they looked upon him. Or at least most of the time. Sometimes it appeared that Cologne knew more than she was letting on. He was troubled by that a little, however what troubled him the most was that Akane was no longer among the living.Replaying the battle over in his head, he pondered just what happened./*Flashback*/Ranma battled with all his power against his opponent. Knocked from his grasp earlier, Akane lay on the ground, dried up from touching the Kinjakan. And between him and the water needed to save her life, floated Saffron. Flapping his fiery wings every so often to keep airborne. Everything Ranma tried seemed to fail. Sure the occasional hit would seem to damage his opponent. But any damage he inflicted upon Saffron would regenerate with but a wisp of flame.Why won't anything work! I've taken on opponents that were more powerful than me before and came out victorious. Why should this be any different! he thought, gritting his teeth as he took another blow."Foolish Mortal! You dare oppose the powers of the Immortal Phoenix!" bellowed Saffron. "I shall show you the follies of your ways landling!"Saffron flew higher into the air and prepared for his final assault. Only one would walk away from this and he was sure it would not be this landling. He smirked as he thought on how the mortal below him never figured out to try and use the Gekkaja against him. It would have been fruitless in the end but it would have been amusing. But the weapon had been lost early in the fight. Those thoughts aside, he continued to power up his final attack. He wanted to finish this soon so he could again bath in the waters of Jusendo so his body could regulate the extreme heat that it generated.******/On the ground.../The others stood back as they watched a fight like no other they had watched before. Each lost in their own thoughts as they hid so as to not be in the way of the fight.Soun was crying about how his baby girl was now a dried up doll and how the schools would never be joined. Genma patted him on the back, trying to tell him everything would be all right in the end. Looking over at Ranma, Genma couldn't help but be proud of his boy.Ryouga, with concern for Akane, couldn't help but watch his sometimes friend, sometimes rival battle this mythical beast. He knew that he would not be able to do what Ranma was doing. Mousse and Shampoo hung back with Cologne, watching with wide but worried eyes. Neither wanted to see Akane dead even though for Shampoo, that would have been advantageous in her quest for her Airen. However, she still considered Akane somewhat of a friend.Mousse didn't want Akane to die either. If she did then Saotome would be free to pursue his beloved Shampoo.Watching with narrowed eyes, Cologne studied the moves Ranma used against the phoenix. The Hiryu Shoten Ha had little effect on it, but the revisions were what she was watching. To believe Son In Law was capable of revising that technique into these others is simply astounding. To be able to master the soul of ice far enough to create ice! If we survive this, then he shall be adopted into the tribe. Shampoo has little, if no chance to woo him anymore. To think, I came here to keep Shampoo from getting killed and I find myself witness to a fight the likes of which may never be seen again. she mused as the battle progressed.As the fight neared it's climax, Ranma prepared himself. This would be the final clash. But he could sense the power behind Saffron's final attack and knew he would be unable to defend against it.Saffron gloated as he prepared his final attack. "Your woman is dead and you are next. You shall pay for interrupting my cycle of ascension!"Searching deep for the power to defend himself, Ranma struggled to find anything that could help him. Even the power of the Neko-Ken wasn't enough as he broke through a barrier, suddenly realizing that he could now access it's awesome and terrible power.With his eyes closed in the search for power, he didn't see Saffron unleash his final attack. The flames were coming closer and closer. He could feel the heat off the attack as sweat poured down his face. Deeper and deeper he dug until the real world faded away. He was just about ready to give up hope when a shimmer of blue light appeared in the corner of his mind's eye. Turning toward it, he could see a beautiful and majestic hawk unlike anything he'd ever seen before. It flew towards him and he could feel the power radiating off it. The hawk flew down and landed in front of him. Silently it stared at the pigtailed martial artist while cocking it's head to one side then the other. Silence ensued as the two stared at each other. Just before the silence became too much, the hawk spoke, "Hello Ranma"Startled by the speech coming from the hawk, Ranma slowly said, "Um.... Hello...""Do not be afraid Ranma. I am not here to hurt you." said the Hawk.Ranma, a little braver than before, questioned the Hawk... "Who are you? And where are we? What happened to Saffron?"The hawk pondered this a moment before replying. "We are in your mind Ranma. Do not worry about Saffron for now. Time has no meaning here."Seeming to understand, Ranma nodded and inquired, "Ok, I think I understand but what about you? Who are you?"If a bird could smile, this one would have. "That is a complicated story and there is one better than I to tell it. But for now, lets just say that I am you and you are me."Ranma stared dumbly, "Huh? What do you mean, I am you and you are me? What kind of nonsense is that?"Deciding to explain a little, the Hawk replied, "Ranma, I am a part of you that was locked away due to the Neko-Ken training. It was because of that miserable excuse of a human that you call your father that this happened. Now that you have broken the barrier and gained access to the powers of the Neko-Ken, I have been set free.""Well I know pops ain't much, but he's all I've had." Ranma replied trying to stick up for his father at least a little bit.Shaking it's head the Hawk tried to clarify, "Ranma, The man you call your father is not related to you. He is mearly your father in name only. He has no blood relation to you whatsoever.""What! You mean to say that the Panda isn't my father?!" erupted Ranma with a slight maniacal gleam in his eye."Err... yes, that about sums it up. However you have not a father, but two mothers." replied the hawk.Blinking at this a moment, Ranma mearly shrugged. With all the strange stuff that happens in my life, this is mild. Looking back at the Hawk, Ranma asked, "So what happens now?""We become one, Ranma. Once that happens, your true heritage and power will be awoken as well as making you more complete instead of fragmented like you are now."Before Ranma could say anything, another presence appeared and presented itself. The presence took the shape of a large panther whom looked at Ranma and the Hawk.Gazing upon the panther, Ranma oddly enough didn't feel afraid but more as though felt a kinship to the black beast in front of him. "Who are you?" Both Ranma and the Hawk inquired.With a throaty chuckle the Cat explained, "I am the representation of what you call the Neko-Ken. I am the combination of small parts of the souls of the cats that were used to train you. And I too wish to join with you."Both the Hawk and Ranma blinked at this unexpected turn of events.The hawk looked into the cat and at it's power. It saw that it had a similar source as his own. The hawk merely nodded and said, "I see no problems with that. However it is Ranma who must decide."Both sets of eyes turned to Ranma who seemed to be thinking the situation over. They are both a part of me but I wonder if I will still be myself after this is over..."I have one question before I say anything on this." said Ranma."Yes?" replied the dual voices of the Cat and HawkSighing, Ranma decided to just ask, "If I go through with this. I mean join with you two. Will I still be me?"The Hawk and Cat looked at each other a moment before they nodded to one another. The hawk stepped forward to reply."Yes Ranma, you will still be you for the most part. However by combining with us, you will undergo some changes. Some physical, some mental. We cannot say what physical changes will occur. They will occur slowly over time as you use your power. However mentally, you would most likely gain a greater understanding of the world around you. You would be more in tune with nature than before. And knowledge will be imparted to you of your new powers. But you would have to practice and train to gain complete control of them."The large cat interjected a little as well, "Also you will no longer be afraid of cats but will be able to communicate with them. You will have a deep love for them as well."Pondering this a moment, Ranma gently nodded. "One more question. Will I be able to defeat Saffron?"Both the Cat and Hawk chuckled a little before answering."Yes, you will have the power required to defeat Saffron and be able to attempt to save the girl. But we fear that it may be too late for her. Saffron's final attack is approaching and her body can no longer withstand the heat of his attacks." replied the hawk to Ranma's question."WHAT!" bellowed Ranma. Both the Hawk and Cat flinched at the outburst."Very well. I will join with you two." stated Ranma. An icy fire in his eyes.Nodding both the cat and hawk seemed to form into two balls of energy. One a brilliant blue, the other a midnight black. The two balls of energy swirled around him, infusing his body with knowledge and power as they mixed. Ranma's body started to glow a light purple as the two energies combined with him. His body floating, suspended in mid air. His clothes and hair fluttering about him as though a strong wind were blowing. Soon the process was completed and Ranma slumped to the ground.Thoughts raced through his head. Knowledge he didn't have before flew around as he did his best to assimilate it. A few moments passed before it began to slow down. Finally it was finished and Ranma Saotome, phased out of this mental landscape.In the real world, the heat of Saffron's final attack approached. Closer and closer it came until there was no escape from it. Suddenly, Ranma opened his eyes, each glowing with an ethereal light. One a brilliant blue, the other a midnight black. They soon merged to form two glowing purple orbs.Ranma, angry at his foe, held up a single hand. Too quiet for anyone else to hear, he softly said, "Wings of the Light Hawk".The blast impacted. The flames engulfing him along with a large area around him. Saffron, high above was sure that this landling and his friends were dead. Fortunately everyone was behind Ranma and was shielded from the blast with the exception of a certain lifeless tomboy. As the blast subsided, Saffron's smirk faded as he could see his foe standing there with an arm outstretched. Before he could think about it, something caught his eye as well as the others around. Wings. Wings of Light appeared fanning out until they presented an impressive sight. Ten Wings of Light. Everyone stood in shock at the sight they saw. However, only three on the battlefield knew the significance in the appearance of the wings.Saffron: No! Impossible! How could a mere boy generate enough power to call forth the wings, let alone all 10 of them! I must tread carefully. The last time I encountered this power, I was nearly destroyed. Curse that woman! Fortunately, I crashed on this planet and was able to recover somewhat.Cologne: Incredible. The wings of the light hawk! But how? I never sensed any Jurian energy out of him. I will have to have a talk with son-in-law, but before that, I should contact my old friend Yosho and get his input on this.Ranma: Akane is Dead. Saffron will regret this day if it's the last thing I do. I will avenge you Akane. I promise.Eyes locked with Saffron, Ranma stated with a voice that carried a seriousness not present in it before, "Saffron... Because of you, the woman I love is dead. Now, I shall kill you just as you killed her. This I swear."Saffron gulped as his peered into those unnerving glowing purple orbs. He knew he was no match for the power the boy now held and prepared himself to be reborn.With a power behind his voice which rattled the bones of those around him, Ranma called his attack..."Wings of the Light Hawk Revised: Wings of the Cat's Claws!" shouted Ranma.As though bursting from flesh, the tips of the wings sprouted midnight black claws. Four on each wing tip. The black color, like an endless shadow, receded into each wing a short ways. In the blink of an eye, the wings closed fast on Saffron. The eyes of those around him turned away with the exception of Genma and Cologne. The others tried to keep their lunch down. Gulping, Genma decided to stay on the good side of his son from now on as he realized that the technique his son was using made the Yama-Senken look like a butter knife.Cologne on the other hand narrowed her eyes, So Son-In-Law has mastered the Neko-ken as well and merged the Wings with it. An Impressive feat and it further proves that adoption is the only way to get him into the tribe. He has grown too powerful and he stated it already. The woman he loves is dead. I definitely must speak with Yosho about this. From what I know, only the ships could generate the wings. And then, only three wings were capable of being generated. Hmm... this is a most intriguing mystery.Saffron could not put up with the assault as the claws tore him limb from limb. Soon his energy was not enough to maintain him and in a burst of flame, he died. His ashes falling over the ashes of Akane. Unbeknownst to all but Ranma, the attack caused damage to Saffron's regenerative life force. As a result, the phoenix would not rise from it's ashes this time.It is done Akane. Your killer has been destroyed and you have been avenged. Ranma thought as he approached the ashes that were once his fiancee. Kneeling down, he gathered them up as best he could. He would give her ashes a proper burial before they left.Ryoga's heart was broken but instead of blaming Ranma he silently mourned as he knew Ranma did everything he could to save her. He could only hope that Ranma would still be his friend and sometimes rival/sparring partner. Slowly everybody gathered together to leave the mountain behind and head for the port. Nobody would say anything to Ranma, lest they incur his wrath. They gave him a wide berth and vowed not to anger him. Soun could be heard in the background crying about his youngest daughter./*End Flashback*/He knew what happened now. With the joining, he now knew that there are times when one must resort to lethal force to save those they cared about. He was now no longer a Martial Artist, but a Warrior. He could not save Akane, but he was able to save his friends and family. Now, he could only wonder when the physical changes would begin and if he'd still have friends and family when they happened. Sparing once last glance at his supposed father, Ranma decided he'd deal with him later. For now, he required his sleep to rest after all that had happened this last week. His last thoughts before surrendering to unconsciousness were what he would tell Akane's sisters...*******Meanwhile...In a house deep in the country, a young girl slept. A worried sister and furry Cabbit patiently awaiting her awakening.... Whenever that time would come...Author Notes:Ok, now we know who holds the power, but what is the true significance of the 10 wings? What is Tsunami's story? Will Sasami ever wake up? How does Cologne know Yosho and about the power of Jurai? Did Ryo-Ohki get her Carrot? All this and more in the next chapter of: Child of the Goddess!