Subject: A Son's Duty
From: Hitomi Ichinohei
Date: 8/28/1995, 7:13 PM

Ok, a lot of people who are on this list have emailed me requesting a 
copy of the fiction.  Here are chapters one and two, part four will be 
posted tomorow.  For those of you who like this sort of thing, I am 
trying to place some of my own knowledge (dubiously obtained) within the 

I actually find the series quite funny and a good mixture of things that 
can happen with the rediculous.

And as to how I came by some of this knowledge...

Ask those on the Ranma Mailing List.

Ichinohei Hitomi


A Son's Duty.

A fan fiction based on Takahashi Rumiko's ongoing Manga series, Ranma 1/2

Saotome Ranma, Saotome Genma, Saotome Nodoka, Tendo Akane, Tendo Soun, 
Tendo Kasumi, Tendo Nabiki, Kuonji Ukyou, Hibiki Ryouga, P-chan, Shampoo, 
Moose, Kunou Tatewaki, Kuno Kodachi, and Hinako Sensei are copyright 1987, 
1995 by Takahashi Rumiko.

Publishing rights:

Japan:              Shogakukan Inc. Tokyo
Hong Kong:          Jademan (Holdings) Ltd.
North America:      Viz Inc.

Chapter One:

The morning was beautiful.  Nice and sunny with a hint of moisture left 
over from the morning rains.  In the air, a delightful fragrance, full of 
perfumes and smells, yet clear and fresh, with just a hint of suppressed 
dust tickling the nose.  A day like this was to be savoured whenever 

For many Japanese however, this was another day in which people had to 
hurry to get to the trains and buses, rush to the undergrounds, or get 
ready for school.  Busy lives, the rush of the city, and the race for 
prosperity in an effort to keep up with the demands of energy, the cost 
of living, and increasingly high prices.  One could describe it as 
preparing for war.  Not the kind of war that was obvious, indeed, not one 
that many would call a war in the usual sense.  It was a war for survival 
and in this war Ucchan's, a small okonomiyaki shop located in Nerima 
District, was barely holding its own.

The owner of the shop, one Kuonji Ukyou, always opened the shop with a 
friendly smile and a pleasant demeanour.  While the regulars who attended 
the place found the business cozy, if a bit unusual for a district far 
from the hustle of downtown Tokyo, the irregular customers were surprised 
to find that the restaurant resembled many of the Office Girl bars and 
clubs closer into the city.  One of the reasons was the fact that Ukyou 
sometimes appeared as a young man and at other times as a young woman.  
Then there were those friends of hers, especially one red headed girl who 
tried to disguise herself as, and claim to be, a boy despite her obvious 
femininity.  This raised some eyebrows, but as long as they caused little 
or no trouble, the establishment was tolerated.

Technically speaking, Kuonji Ukyou was a boy, at least on paper.  He was 
sixteen, the owner of a semi-successful expansion shop of the Kuonji 
family, which he ran part time in the evenings and on weekends, and was 
enrolled in the local high school, Furinkan.  Admittedly, he was not at 
the top of his class in school, but Ukyou was close enough so that he 
would have little, if any, trouble getting into a university of his choice 
once he passed the Juken.  To all appearances, Ukyou was a self-assured, 
competent businessman with a solid, if unusual, set of customers.  Some of 
the other business people in the district were surprised at the good 
fortune of the restaurant which apparently filled an unsuspected niche in 
the neighbourhood.  Especially since it was closed at the oddest times 
when the shop should have been open.

In reality, Ukyou was a young woman.  She had chosen to be regarded as a 
male early on in her life thanks to a disappointment which dishonoured her 
and her family.  It started when she was a child.  Ukyou met a young boy, 
who, at first, was her adversary.  A pleasantly mannered boy who happened 
to beat her every day in order to secure an okonomiyaki from her father's 
yattai. Gradually, the two of them became friends, with Ukyou now making 
okonomiyaki's for Ranma.  For Ranma's part, he was glad to have such a good 
friend, for Ukyou, she had started to fall in love with him.  Admittedly, 
it was a crush at the time, and it was complicated by the fact that Ranma 
thought she was another boy, but she persuaded her father that this was 
the boy for her.

When her father had asked the father of the boy, Saotome Genma, to marry 
the two of them, Genma had said that it was up to Ranma.  What happened 
had embarrassed her family, and embarrassed her for when given the choice 
Ranma had not realized what was being asked.  Genma, not wanting to give up 
anything, agreed to the engagement.  The boy's father had then stolen the 
yattai when they were supposed to take Ukyou with them on their training.  
This created a situation where, for the sake of honour, she and her family 
had to make a choice:  Either move, or for her to be raised as, and to 
become in fact, a young boy.  Ukyou herself chose to be raised as a boy 
since she would never trust another male again.

Over the years, he had become a good son, performing all of his duties, 
going to school, getting good grades, and practicing a type of martial art 
almost lost in the rush to teach 'business martial arts' to the westerners.  
While his style used many of the basic moves common to all the higher arts, 
Ukyou had an additional set of weapons, his spatulas with which he 
practiced daily, and the equipment of an okonomiyaki chef with which, if 
used correctly, he could become extremely deadly.  It was soon after the 
start of the new school year when the tracers Ukyou had put out and the 
tracking he had been doing finally paid off.  Ranma had returned and was 
now living in Nerima district.  While this was far from home, he 
nonetheless set out to confront, and defeat Ranma for the deep, still 
painful, insult to his, and the families, honour.

Ukyou applied to, and was enrolled in Ranma's school.  His goal, to 
challenge Ranma and make a fool out of him.  By this time, he did not 
consider himself a woman anymore, at least not in any real sense of the 
word.  All that was left for Ukyou to move on was to finally defeat the 
one who had stolen his honour.

Ukyou had not realized how wrong he was to confront Ranma.  At first, his 
opponent had avoided all his blows, then when Ukyou was getting the upper 
hand, Ranma's skills started to show.  Instead of defeating him, Ukyou and 
his shame were exposed to the school.  At that point, as far as he was 
concerned, Ranma was now a deadly enemy.  It was only after a talk with 
Ranma, who explained what had happened, that Ukyou realized that he had 
not meant to dishonour him, but that he honestly did not know what Ukyou's 
sex was when he was younger.

Seeing the way Ranma wished to restore his honour, Ukyou started to fall 
in love with him, a love that blossomed in an instant.  This time, it was 
not a crush, or a passing phase, but true, deep, and meaningful love.  At 
that moment, Ukyou's life was thrown into turmoil.

You see, Ukyou stilled considered himself to be a male for the most part 
and his documentation and papers supported that fact.  It was only after 
being exposed for whom he was several times that he came to accept, and 
be what he once was for some part.  Ranma's revelation of how he changed 
sexes had facinated Ukyou and helped in his decision.  Thus Ukyou started 
to live a life where he lived his school and some other parts of his life 
as a man, and at other times he was a sweet, caring young woman.  It was 
not too bad a life, and he was able to fit into the area well, away from 
his family.

All things considered, it was not a bad start to a new life, in fact, it 
was an excellent start.  The best thing about it was he had more freedom 
than he would normally be allowed had he stayed with his parents.  
Generally speaking was as pleasant as this particular morning.  At the 
moment however, Ukyou had to head for school.

"Well, at least it is a beautiful morning.", Ukyou thought as he inhaled 
slowly, enjoying the smells and feeling of the air.  "Today is the sort of 
day that nothing can go wrong."  Turning back to the door, he locked up 
and reached into the mailbox.  Inside were the usual items and, as Ukyou 
started to walk down the street, he began to sort through it.  The bills 
he put to the back to the pile to handle later when Ukyou got home.  There 
were the new magazines, his regulars would like the article in them, 
especially since an Ensoku to that area was coming up in the next couple 
of weeks.  In addition to this was a reminder from her supplier about next 
month, and a thank-you letter from a local construction company.  The last 
letter though caught his eye.

It was from his father, whom he hadn't seen, or really thought of 
contacting, for a few months now.  Worried that something might be wrong, 
he quickly opened the letter and started to read it.  After the usual 
salutations and greetings, as well as some other information, Ukyou got to 
the part that interested him.  He started to read in earnest and his eyes 
began to show a bit of startlement.  As he read further, Ukyou stopped 
walking and stared at the letter.

"By the gods!", he thought to himself, "Not now, not when I finally am 
getting my life back together."  Ukyou looked at the letter once more to 
make sure that he had not misread it, and shuddered.  What he now 
considered his worst nightmare was now coming true, and there was not a 
thing that he could do about it.  Folding the letter carefully, Ukyou put 
it back in the envelope and placed it in his briefcase.  Surprisingly, he 
then stuffed the rest of the mail haphazardly into his briefcase as well, 
not really paying attention to what he was doing.  "Family duties!  I 
thought I could escape from them if I stayed here after what Ran-chan said 
to me.  If father finds out how I feel, if he even suspects what I feel 
about Ran-chan, there could be a lot of trouble."  He shook his head as he 
resumed walking, "How am I going to get out of this?  In any case, while 
father visits I can no longer appear as a woman, even in private...
Ran-chan!!!"  Ukyou grimaced, "I'm going to have to stay away from him, 
and I am also going to have to make sure that he stays away from me and 
the restaurant, at least for a while."

At that moment, the object of Ukyou's concern was having a few troubles of 
his own.  For Ranma, the day had started better than normal.  His usual 
morning practice with his father had ended with Genma being dunked in the 
pond, and Akane, luckily, did not catch him watching to make sure that she 
arrived back safely from her morning jog.  Even breakfast went well with 
Akane and him being cordial and polite to each other.  It was when he was 
walking with Akane on the way to school, that he had made a big mistake.

He opened his mouth.

He wasn't quite sure what it was he said.  In fact, Ranma was sure that he 
had been nice to Akane all morning.  "Stupid girl," Ranma thought, "What 
does she think I did now?"  Turning his head, he looked back at his fiance.  
In the mood she was in, Ranma was not sure if it was wise to stop.  He did 
like her a lot, but her temper...Ranma still had bruises from the last time 
she blew up and he wanted to avoid any more.  "I'm sure I didn't do 
anything to her.  Why does she have to be so violent?"  He continued to 
think..."Ok, what did I do...I asked her how she liked the day so far...I 
looked up at the sky and smiled...I asked her if she wanted to go somewhere 
this evening...I said that she looked nice..._I_ DID_NOT_DO_ANYTHING_TO_HER
...What's wrong with her?"  He looked back again and ended up tripping over 
something and hitting the ground...hard.

Akane's morning had started off well.  The sunlight had come streaming in 
her bedroom window, tickling her nose and waking her up.  She had opened 
her window, letting the outside air clear the mustiness and smells of sleep 
from the room.  Akane looked outside and noticed how nice it was, the sun 
giving just a hint of a rainbow to the air.  She got ready and left her 
room, heart light, and feeling wonderful.

Her morning jog had also gone very well, and she arrived back, full of 
energy.  The surrounding neighborhood had just waking up and not too many 
people were about.  People had greeted her with a friendly smile, and others 
had noded politely.  All in all, a nice, lazy day, not that she really 
expected it to last.

She also expected to have an arguement at any moment with Ranma.

"Strange, " She spoke softly to herself, "Sometimes, it's as though we 
can't have a good day unless we fight."  Going downstairs, Akane expected 
Ranma to make some sort of smart remark, something to purposely get her 
angry.  It wasn't that Akane was looking for her day to be spoiled, but she 
had gotten used to their constant bickering.  She was surprised that he 
greeted here pleasantly, even warmly.  It sometimes happened, so she 
shrugged her shoulders and started eating.  It was on their way to school 
that Akane realized Ranma had not eaten as much as usual.

What had triggered that reaction was when Ranma asked her about how she 
liked the day.  He had never been that pleasant, in fact, he usually made 
some comment by this time that caused her to automatically attack him.  "Is 
he sick?", she muttered to herself as she looked at him, "He's just staring 
up at the sky."

It was when Ranma had asked her out and said she looked nice that she 
decided to try and hit him.  At first, it was because she thought their 
parents were trying to get them to date again, they were always inventing 
situations to throw them together.  Then she realized, he was just being 
nice because he wanted to be nice.

She hesitated, then shouted, "RANMA NO BAKA!!!"

It wasn't that Akane wanted to fight this time, it was more that she wanted 
to return some normality to her day.  She was not used to Ranma being nice 
to her, and it was unnerving to say the least.  For Akane, it was better 
for her sanity, and her pride if they were fighting.  She ended up chasing 
him into the school yard, her school bag swinging at him.

That was when Ukyou turned the corner.

Normally, Ukyou would have been able to avoid an attack, having been able 
to feel when danger was approaching.  Most people thought that he, and the 
other martial artists at the school, had fast reflexes.  As Ukyou would 
have told anyone who asked, the skill came from practice, of putting 
oneself into enough danger that the skill became as a new sense, and while 
his body and mind would usually react before truly being aware what was 
happening, his worries had distracted Ukyou.

It was a spectacular crash.

Chapter Two:

The school yard was suddenly quite silent.

Akane was looking at the scene, a little bit startled and a trace of a 
smile starting to twitch at the side of her mouth.  What surprised Akane 
so much was the fact that Ukyou had ended up sprawled out on the ground, 
stunned.  Ranma, on the other hand, was flat on his face about five feet 
further.  She couldn't help but stare, her knowledge of their skills made 
the two of them accidentally hitting each other immensely funny.

Ranma's face clearly showed that he had lost his breath.  As usual, 
however, he was going to be ok.  He usually was in these situations, and 
he had a tendency to recover faster than most people.  Of course, he had 
to concentrate and focus on those parts of the body that were injured, not 
very much of a problem given his stamina.  Actually, his stamina was a 
product of two different circumstances, the first being that his study of 
martial arts and the associated medicines allowing ones body to heal faster 
than normal, and the second being that he was a trouble magnet.

The first was a distinct advantage, allowing him the chance to concentrate 
on healing and on getting a task completed.  When he was growing up he 
learned many schools of thought, and the most important lesson he had 
learned was that the mind was more important than the body.  His teachers 
in the school would have disputed this as Ranma never seemed to pay 
attention in class.  This of course, was not entirely true as he 
concentrated on the expansion of his mind and senses, intergrating his 
knowledge in order to act instrictively and decisively when the time came.  
It allowed him to experience a lot, especially since he was concerned with 
the study of Kenpo, seemingly to the exclusion of all else, for most of 
his life.  The many training trips he had gone upon would have meant his 
being a failure in school long ago if he was unable to use his head.

The second reason was sometimes his worst nightmare.

Wether it was Kunou Tatewaki, who was in a way both a romantic rival (at 
least to Kunou-Sempai's mind) or a potential and persistent suitor (in the 
oddest sense), to people he had never heard of before, their first reaction 
to was usually to marry or kill him.  It had become an almost a constant 
factor in his life since he moved here.  It made things interesting, but 
somehow he kept wishing for a chance to be normal.

In the past few months alone, Ranma had been attacked several times, 
offered dates, threatened with marriage, and other complications occurring 
from his...other half.  He was angry with his father over that particular 
incident, and at times hit Genma when reminded about it, but was able to 
act a lot calmer now than when it had first happened.  In a way, he was 
handling the situation a lot better these days.  Of course, he wouldn't 
admit it, but the reason Ranma was able to handle his situation was due 
to Akane.

Nobody would have beleived that however, given the way they acted in front 
of their family or in public.

For both of them, the relationship started out well.  Ranma had just 
arrived at the Tendo Training Hall and was being...harassed... by Nabiki, 
Akane's elder sister.  Ranma had been embarashed, and it was Akane that 
noticed the blush Nabiki's...handling...of the situation had caused their 
guest.  Akane had decided to take some pity on this new arrival to their 
home and took Ranma out to the Dojo proper in order for them to practice 
Kenpo.  She wanted to test this person who was supposed to be an arranged 
husband for her, or one of her sisters.  Ranma ended up defeating Akane, 
but at the time, she didn't mind.  Losing to Ranma was not so bad, and 
they had started to become friends.  Somehow, the fact that her father 
wanted Ranma to marry either her or one of her sisters was still somewhat 
ridiculous, but not really as bad as it sounded originally.

At least that is how it started out.

During the battle, and afterwards, Akane had revealed a bit of herself 
that she would have never told a male.  How determined she was, the fact 
that she did not like boys for the most part, at least, not romantically, 
and that the only people that she respected were other women.  Ranmas' 
face had shown a bit of shocked strain at the acknowledged respect Akane 
had shown.

A lot of it had to do with the fact that Akane had said some things that 
only her family and closest friends would hear.  The emotions she revealed 
told a lot about the trust she placed in her father and in the apparently 
close relationship between their family's.  Still, she had shown a shadow 
of her true self, the part that was hidden away beneath the many layers 
that were part of her personality, and not one that she would normally 
allow to be obseved by a male.

Wondering what to do about this, Ranma decided to sit down and contemplate 
the garden, allowing the mind to drift to different areas and touch 
lightly on the situations that had brought them here.  However, Kasumi had 
prepared a bath for the two practitioners, and insisted that their guest 
take a bath.  With no option, Ranma headed for the bath, still wondering 
what to do, and not realizing Akane would be coming in soon.

Ranma's bath had changed the respect Akane had shown earlier to a type of 
hatred and rivalry.

During the past few months however, their respect had once again grown for 
one another, and they started to hide their true feelings behind the wall 
of hate and contempt that they had built, not wanting to be the first to 
admit defeat.  Akane had started calling Ranma a pervert, and Ranma 
retaliated by calling Akane a tomboy.  These times, while interesting to 
those around them, had created a situation that made them decide to avoid 
the possibility of marriage for all time.

Somehow, through all of this turmoil, Akane had grown to support Ranma, 
and to help him get out of most of the situations that he found himself 
in.  It was not that he could not handle himself or could have not have 
defeated what was coming at him, but more that he did not have the heart 
to do so himself.  It was this that she had come to recognize as a part 
of herself in him, that of the nervous, slightly scared individual who 
cannot bare to show it.  Of course, when it came to a battle, she found 
him stupidly macho, full of fight and bluster, but put him in front of 
people where he had to reveal or display emotions, and he was a wreck.

Being with Akane made what Ranma had to go through a lot easier to bear.

Ukyou on the other hand was just lying there, his eyes closed and 
seemingly unwilling to get up.

Akane smiled slightly as she approached the two, pointedly not paying 
attention to Ranma.  She noticed a strange, almost-grimace evident on 
Ukyou's face, something that was unusual, especially given Ukyou's 
tendency to be as obstinately macho as Ranma.  Usually he was ok when in 
a fight, and could take a lot of damage.  He had proven that several times 
in the past, and would probably prove it again, despite the fact that he 
did not have to.  For some reason, however, this time seemed different 
and Akane was a bit concerned.  Despite their competition for Ranma, they 
were friends and if Ukyou was hurt then she wanted to help.

"Want a hand Ukyou?" Akane asked.

Ukyou opened his eyes slowly as the words sank into his head.  He was 
really bad off if he couldn't avoid getting hit by someone, especially in 
an accidental manner.  The practice of harakei had given him the skills 
necessary to avoid such occurrences and only severe emotional stress could 
cause him to disregard the warning signals that must surely have been in 
the air.  This was not a good sign, and that meant the news that he had 
received from his father had disturbed him more than he was originally 
willing to admit.

Sighing, Ukyou looked up at Akane, "Thanks Akane-chan, I appreciate it."  
So saying, he took the offered hand and allowed himself to be helped up.  
"I am just annoyed with myself at the moment,"  Shaking his head, he 
continued, "I should have been able to avoid getting hit like that, After 
all, I am supposed to be a martial artist."

Akane had to grin at that.  The reputations that Ukyou, Ranma, her, and 
a few others in the school had gained was immensely overrated at times.  
Although he looked a bit unsteady at the moment, if Ukyou could joke like 
that, he was going to be ok.  Shaking her head, Akane said, "Are you sure?  
For a moment it looked as if you were hurt."

Ukyou smiled slightly, "I'm sure, although this is probably going to 
start some new rumours around here."  Turning, he started to look for his 
briefcase, and noticed Ranma with it.  At the moment, it was open, with 
the magazines now on the ground, and a certain letter being held by Ranma, 
who looked as though he was about to open it.

While the discussion between Ukyou and Akane had been going on, Ranma 
managed to get air back into his lungs.  Noticing that his two fiances 
were talking with each other, he groaned to himself. Despite the valiant 
try, he was going to end up with bruises again.  At least this time he 
would not have to go to the doctor.  Standing up, and trying to bounce 
back quickly, (He couldn't allow anyone to notice that he was hurt.), 
he noticed that Ukyou's briefcase had poped opened and that everything 
usually contained inside was now spilled over the ground.

As his two fiances were not paying attention, he started to gather up 
everything and place it back in the briefcase.  The spill wasn't too bad, 
and he was able to gather most of the papers and books, placing them back 
inside the briefcase.  It was when he started to get the mail that he 
came across the letter addressed to Ukyou.

Ranma had known for some time that Ukyou received a lot of mail.  
Actually, he was a bit surprised at the amount of mail that his friend 
received every day, but usually paid no attention to it since it was 
related to the restaurant business.  This was the first time that he knew 
about that Ukyou had received a personal letter.  Ranma was curious, and 
he stared at it as if to open it up.

"Ran-chan, If you don't mind, I'll take that.", and Ukyou proceeded to 
grab his briefcase and the letter, then bent down to pick up the magazines.

"Who is it from Uk-chan?", Ranma asked, curious, and trying to get a 
closer look at it.

Sighing, Ukyou replied, "Nothing you should be concerned about, just a 
letter from my past."

Akane was the only one who noticed the slight grimace appear briefly on 
Ukyous' face once again.  Realizing that Ukyou needed a friend more than 
a pest at the moment, she grabbed Ranma by his pig tail, took him, and 
tossed him some distance away.  A cry of  "Kawaiikune" could be heard 
coming from that direction as Ranma headed for parts unknown.

In the meantime, Akane was trying to get Ukyou to open up a bit.

"Want to talk about whatever's bothering you?"

"What's to talk about Akane-chan, I'm just not at my best today."

"Is that so?  Then why so protective over that letter?"

Sighing again, Ukyou answered the only way he could, "Something to do with 
the past, and now has to do with the future.  It's really nothing that 
should worry you."

Noticing the time, Akane decided that she would have to try again later.  
The two of them, each thinking their own thoughts and hoping to get there 
before Hinako-Sensei, rushed towards their room.  Both had forgotten that 
Ranma had been sent into the air, and that the direction he was 
travelling in was towards the pool...

Said person was climbing out of the pool, and she was not having a good 
time.  "Gah...Why did she have to do that?  JUST WHAT DID I DO TO HER 
TODAY!!!"  She fumed a little bit, and started to wring out her clothes, 
"Just perfect, I didn't need this to happen to me today.  Why can't I go 
a little while without getting wet somehow.  It's as if someone really 
wants to complicate my life."

The young red head, who looked very cute because of the fact that she was 
angry, went out of the fence surrounding the pool and started back towards 
the school entrance.  She glanced up quickly at the school clock and 
noticed the time, "It figures, no time to get some hot water...Ah well, 
it's not as if the class doesn't already know.  At least I'll be able to 
get some water at lu..."

At that moment, a happy yell went through the air.  A yell that most 
people in the yard ignored, while a few just smirked.  A yell that made 
Ranma close her eyes in utter frustration, and groan with contempt at the 
person who had just grabbed onto her.

"My Pig Tailed Goddess, how I have longed to see you.  I am glad that you 
have managed to elude that sorcerer Saotome!", Kunou Tatewaki said as he 
hugged the young woman, completely oblivious to the signs of almost pure 
hatred coming from her, "I have wanted to hold you in my arms, and to 
take you away from the evil that abounds here."

Ranma didn't even try to explain, she just booted him into the sky.

She grumbled and went into the school.  One of these days Ranma was either 
going to get rid of her curse, get rid of her idiot father who was the 
cause of the trouble, or kill Kunou.

It was not a good day for her.

The usual school antics happened during the day.  Hinako-Sensei speaking 
to Ranma and telling her that, when she was a girl, she should wear a 
proper girls uniform, Akane attempting to both Ignore Ranma and to get 
her to pay more attention to her work, especially in English, and Kunou 
trying to find his "pig tailed goddess" during the lunch break.

It was also obvious to Akane that during the day Ukyou's concentration 
was off.  Their professors had come in and out of the class and while, 
normally, Ukyou was an excellent and intuitive student, today he had 
almost no reaction to what was going on around him.  Somehow, she would 
have to try and get Ukyou to open up about what was bothering him, after 
all, they were friends.

For Ukyou, the day seemed to be one long torture session.  For him, there 
was a good reason for not paying attention, his thoughts were in complete 
turmoil at that moment.  In fact, he hardly heard what any of his 
professors said as he tried to decide what to do.  It wasn't going to be 
easy to stop Ran-chan coming to the restaurant, Ranma was too curious for 
his own good at times.  Shaking his head, he realized something and started 
to laugh silently at himself.  He had chosen this life, chosen to be 
considered a male in front of all Japanese society and yet he still 
loved Ranma.  The duties he must fulfill because of his new sex and the 
duties that he wished to fulfill were at complete odds to one another.

"I'm going to need help with this," Ukyou thought, "But who can I go to?  
Ran-chan is a good friend, but father would kill him.  Shampoo is out, 
and so is Mousse..."  Trying to decide which of the many people that he 
knew who might have been able to help, he looked lazily around the room.  
As he did so, details of the past flitted through his upset mind and for 
some reason his eyes settled on Akane.  "Why not, " he snorted, "She's 
the only one who might be able to help, and she has some knowledge of 
what I'm going to have to go through."

Deciding that the best course of action would be to ask Akane for help, 
Ukyou decided to walk her home after school so that he could explain the 


"So your father is coming to the District?  I would be very happy to meet 
him.  From what you and Ranma have told me, he must be a very nice person, 
and I am sure that Ranma would enjoy talking with your him again."

Ukyou face took on a hurt expression, "I wouldn't say that Akane, if he 
saw Ranma, there would be a lot of trouble.  In any case, my father has 
his own ideas of what his 'son' should do."

Akane caught that last part, and looked at Ukyou, "What are you talking 
about, You're a girl."

Shaking his head, Ukyou pulled out the letter and handed it to Akane, "Not 
legally Akane-chan, by law, I'm a boy.  This means that I have certain 
obligations to fulfill, not the least of which is one that you are 
familiar with."

"What are you talking about?"

"Just read the letter Akane"

Akane started to read.  Normal stuff, things that she hoped her father 
would write to her when she went off to university.  It was when she got 
near the end, that she saw what had caused her friend some worry.


Turning to business concerns about the store, Ukyou, it is a pleasant 
surprise that you have managed to be profitable during the past few months.  
Your mother and I expected to still be supporting you, even though you 
told us that you would have more than enough customers in Nerima District.  
Your books are showing a nice profit, but then, that is what I would expect 
of you considering the business courses that you had opted for.  I guess 
an old man has to take a back seat once to his son once in a while.

There are some concerns I have however, such as the fact that your profit 
margin seems to be low.  Is this a promotion of some kind to get new 
customers to come to the shop?  I would like to know, because it seems to 
be a success where you are and I was thinking of implementing it here at 
this shop.  Another thing, haven't you hired on any help?  From the looks 
of the figures, you seem to be leaving a lot of time open.  I know you 
have to go to school, but couldn't you find some girls to waitress and 
run the shop during the day?

On a more personal note, your mother and I were going to take a vacation, 
but she convinced me that it would be better if I come out to visit you.  
We do have a lot to discuss, such as your education, and I would like to 
spend some time with you.  You are growing up fast son, and I wish to be 
a part of your life now and then.  If you want, we could take a Sunday and 
go fishing, like we did when you were younger.

As to the main matters of my visit, there are some duties that you must 
perform now that you are old enough.  Although it will be several years 
before your coming of age ceremony, your mother and I must insist that 
you carry them out.  One of these duties will be for you to visit the 
family shrine in Kyoto.  As my eldest son, you will have to make the proper 
offerings to our ancestors in preparation of becoming the one to inherit 
the business and honours of our house.  The Kuonji line is old Ukyou, and 
our origins are tied with that ancient city.   The priests and members of 
the temple have already asked if you were ready so you will have to travel 
there soon.

Other than that, there is one particular duty that require your immediate 
attention, which is setting the date for your marriage.  I will admit, we 
would not discuss this normally considering what happened in the past, but 
it is time that you were engaged.  I have spoken to a friend of mine, and 
his daughter will be arriving with me in Nerima on Saturday, March 19.  I 
am sure that you willlike her. She is a pleasant young girl, and will make 
you a good wife.

As always son, I am proud of you.



Akane had stopped walking, shudering a bit at the information that she 
had just absorbed.  "That is some letter Ukyou, I can see why you were 
troubled.  What are you going to do about it?"

"What can I do.  Family honour requires I go through with whatever is 
planned."  Ukyou put one hand in his pocket and the with the other lifted 
his briefcase to his shoulder.

Akane just looked forward, the letter forgotten in her hand and whispered 
to herself, "Family honour..."

Ranma had rushed home in the meantime.  He did not want to stick around 
the school any longer that he had to.  It was not that he hated the school, 
although he did feel that most of the courses that he was forced to take 
in the science stream had no relation to his future profession, but rather 
that whenever he stayed around, something, or someone, always managed to 
pull him into some type of battle.  After the bruises he had recieved 
earlier in the day, he was not feeling up to having a fight.

As he reached the gates to the Tendo household however, he ended up being 
drenched with cold water.

Ranma glared at the panda that was standing on the road outside the 
stonework fence.  "What did you do _that_ for pop?" she shouted, "You may 
_like_ being a panda, but I do _not_ like being a girl!"

Wanting nothing more to do than to take a hot bath, Ranma paid no heed to 
the panda, who was now trying to stick a sign in front of her face, and 
entered into the yard.  "Perfect, " she muttered to herself, "Now I need 
some hot water to change myself back.  Sometimes I think I should skewer 
the old man, just on principle."

"Hello everyone, I'm home!  Kasumi?  Do you happen to have any hot water 
available?", Ranma shouted as she went through the door.

Kasumi stepped out from the kitchen, "Yes Ranko, do you want some tea?"

"No Kasumi, I need it in order to..."  Ranma stopped talking as she 
realized what Kasumi had called her and suddenly knew why her father had 
thrown the water at her.

The person who stepped out of the kitchen behind Kasumi wore a very nice 
silk kimono, with an eye pleasing geometric pattern on one shoulder.  She 
looked very much like 'Ranko', the same facial features, same delicate 
grace, and a confidence that fairly exuded from her.  Although both denied 
it, anybody who looked at them would have said that they were mother and 

"Hello Ranko," said the woman, "How are you today?"

Ranma could only answer, "Hello Auntie Saotome."



Okonomiyaki litterally means, "As you like it."  It is comparable to an 
American pancake, but with a richer flavor and a lighter, more delicate 
skin.  A recipe for it follows below.

The basic recipe is a pancake mixture made with rice or wheat flour.  Extra 
flavor can be given by adding a stock to the mixture.  In addition, many 
Okonomiyaki places have their own family recipes that have been handed down 
for generations.

The following is a restaurant type mixture for about 10 people.

Basic Ingredients

10 chicken eggs
2 quail eggs
5 cups of wheat or 6 cups of rice flour
3.5 cups of Awase Miso

Additional ingredients

Thin pork slices
Thin beef slices
Shrimp, shelled, deveined and fillited.
Red pickled ginger
Sesame oil
Daikon, grated finely
Thinly sliced Shitaki Mushrooms
or any other flavourings as long as they are thinly sliced.

Break the eggs in a bowl and mix well.  Add Awase Miso to the eggs and mix 
well.  Slowly  add the flour and beat so that the mixture is without lumps.

Heat a griddle or hot plate to about 350 degrees farinheit and oil.  Stir 
mixture just before you pour it out on the hot plate.  Allow to start 
cooking, and add any ingredients that you would like to the mixture that 
is on the girdle.

Wait until the bottom is browned and flip over to cook the top.

Flip back over and onto a plate.

Garnish with bonito, nori, or some wasabi.



There are a variety of sauces that can be had with Okonomiyaki.  My 
favourite is a Sweet Sake sauce.


2/3 cups Sake
1/3 cup Mirin
1/3 cup Shoyu
1/3 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons of grated fresh ginger
2 tablespoons of Su
2 whole takano tjume crushed

In a suacepan heat up the Sake, Mirin, Shoyu, and Su.  When it is nearly 
boiling add the sugar and stir until dissolved.  Reduce heat and add the 
ginger and takano tjume.  Let simmer for an hour or until the sauce is two 
thirds of its original volume.  Strain and cool.  Serve in a Shoyu dish.


These clubs and bars are designed to cater to Office Girls or secretaries 
as they are known here.  In areas of Tokyo, these clubs and bars feature 
transsexuals and transvestites as waitresses.


This is the standardized test that students take to determine their place 
within the structure of schooling.  The test results determine which 
schools you can enter.


A type of cart used for selling food to customers.  Can be seen in many 
resort areas and is similar to the American mobile hot dog or hamburger 


The gathering of various magazines is a type of customer appreciation 
displayed by the restaurants.  Because life is very heric and rushed, most 
people take any oportunity that presents itself to read, study, catch up 
on current events, or socialize.  In fact, a restaurant usually has a set
of regulars who sit at the same place every time and use it to study and 
socialize.  In fact, some regulars pay for the privilage of the sitting 
space with a monthly fee over and above whatever food they may order.  In 
other cases, an owner might provide a space because of the customer
flow a particular person might bring in.

The new magazines are placed at these tables and the older ones are 
rotated to other parts of the restaurant including the food preperation 
bar.  Over a month, a restaurant will go through approximately eight or 
nine dozen new magazines.

Remembering my school days, the only times that I had to relax was going 
to the candy store where ojisama used to sit all of us down and tell us 
stories or during the performance of the tea ceremony every day.  Trust 
me on this, we even work at having fun. My country is a country of
workaholics, and no matter what anyone says, this is a fact of Japanese 


An Ensuko, or 'Far Feet' is a type of field trip to a historical place, 
such as a temple, or a place where something of great importance has 
occured in our history, or, for students in the science stream, a 
scientific research centre.  These were both fun and boring, depending on 
how good you were.  Ranma would definately be in trouble on these for 
_NOT_ wearing a proper uniform.  (For that matter, he would be in trouble 
anyways since _NOT_ wearing a proper uniform can be grounds for dismissial 
from school.)


In Japan, manufacturing is conducted on the just in time theory of 
economics.  Basically stated, screws, parts, and equipment are delivered 
as close as possible to the manufacturing time.  According to the theory, 
this has the following benefits:

1)  Top quality raw materials are made available.

2)  Top quality parts are created.

3)  No stockpiling occurs of unecessary equipment.

4)  Quality control remains very high.

5)  There can be imediate production stopage and revision if it needs to 
    be done.

Because of this, the reminder serves two purposes.

1)  Asking the restaurant owner to make an estimate of the materials 
    needed for supplies at the end of each week based on past business 

2)  To provide information on new techniques, recipies, equipment, and 
    materials that allow the restaurant owner to have a better product 
    and more customer satisfaction.


This is _not_ what most readers of this would think.  I.E.  A thank you 
for repairs done due to a lot of dammage being done to the restaurant.  
Indeed, this is a common, mundane occurance that is designed to promote 
good public relations and repeat business.  In this instance, a new type 
of high effiency hotplate and burners would have been installed at 
Ucchans.  This would include a series of single cup coffee burners as 
well as a large cold brewing container to make a strong house specialty 
coffee.  Given that Ucchans would serve mostly studying school students 
and some business people, this would be the best way to increase the 
popularity of her place of business.


Also known as Kempo.

This is an ancient art that is the basis of all the higher levels of the 
martial arts that are in existence today.  Basically, it is a hand to hand 
style of fighting that has evolved over the centuries to encompass all of 
the teachings of arts, and has evolved into many diferentiating styles.  It 
is also the first known combat art.

The origin of the art is said to have begun long ago at the Shaolin Temple 
in China.  While this is true in a way, it is necessary to trace the art 
back even further.  According to recorded history, the legend of the 
martial arts started when Prince Bodhidharma, a warrior, and later a monk, 
was sent by his teacher, Prajnatara to China to reteach the principles of 
Buddhism and introduce the knowledge of Dhyana, or Zen Koans, to the 
practices of those there.  Bodhidharma agreed to do this and headed 
north, to the various southern kingdoms.

In the year 520 BC, Bodhidharma travelled to the kingdom of Wei where he 
had an intense meeting with the Emperor Wu.  This conversation led nowhere 
since the Emperor was concerned with worldly matters and did not have much 
time for spiritual concerns.  This had discouraged Bodhidharma and he left 
for the Honan province and the Shaolin Temple in a kind of depression.

When he arrived, his worst fears were realized.  The monks of the famed 
Shaolin Temple, which was known even then as a place of great learning, 
had grown physically, and mentally, deficient having no other concerns 
than meditating all day long.  Bodhidharma was not happy with this and had 
to find some way to return the temple to the place of learning it once was.  
He left for a time and returned to teach all the monks of the monastery 
the art of Shih Pa Lo Han Sho.  This art was _not_ meant to be used as a 
way of war, but instead used to inspire vigour, confidence, health, and 
concentration so that the monks could continue to pursue enlightenment.

Forty years later, the first of many attacks occurred.  Bandits had 
decided the temple held vast sums of treasures.  In the attack, the monks 
did not fight well, and it looked as though the temple would fall, and 
indeed, the elders of the temple were ready to give up.  Instead, a young 
monk, known only as the begging monk to history, fought back with his hands 
and his feet killing some of the attackers and driving away many more.  
Thus began the training in the Shaolin temple of the first fighting style 
known as Chuan Fa.

Over the next few decades, the techniques were expanded so that the 
learning of Shih Pa Lo Han Sho, supplemented with Chun Fa raised the 
various techniques from the original eighteen to seventy two.  This 
allowed the monks an advantage, and they were soon known as the silent 
protectors of the people of China.  Later still, a meeting between Ch'ueh 
Taun Shang-jen and a master of many martial ways known as Li, developed 
the fighting style of Wu Xing Quan, which had one hundred and seventy 
distinct techniques and were divided into five different animal forms.  
This was the true start of the higher arts, and it was the greatest gift 
that the monks could give to the peoples whom they were to teach.

According to some legends, it is said that Kenpo originated in the 
Okinawian Islands and the Ryukyu kingdoms as well as in Japan, however, 
this is not entirely true.  Kenpo, or Law of the Fist, was a derivative 
of Chuan Fa.  Many wandering monks had brought the arts across Asia, but 
nowhere was the art more welcomed than in these far off islands and 
kingdoms where fighting for survival was paramount. Thus, since monks 
thought the practice of bodily skills to any who wanted to learn, Kenpo 
was available to Noble and Commoner alike.

Kenpo also developed due to the many disappearances and returns of people 
from Okinawa and the Japanese Islands.  Many times had they left for 
China, and many in the villages thought they had died, their families 
leaving a marker in the gravesite above the village.  They had instead 
traveled and applied themselves to many difering ideals, and thus learned 
of the fighting skills of the Shaolin.  In their time away, they learned 
many ways, many types of masteries of different arts, but at the base of 
which was Kenpo, or Chuan Fa.  In most cases, there is a mystery behind 
the spread of these arts in Japan, especially since it was as a rather 
abrupt explosion of learning in the seventeenth century.  Unfortunately, 
the reasons for this development have been lost to history, or rather, 
been kept from history as many schools of learning are only handed down 
within the family line.

Today's modern art of Kenpo, as known across the world and most especially 
in North America can be traced back to the Kosho ryu Kenpo which was 
developed in Kyushu, Japan by the families of Kumamoto and Nagasaki.  
These schools of arts, however, are not the only forms of the arts 
available.  As of last count, there were over five hundred different 
schools with most of the training going back to as a basis centuries 
older than that of Kosho Ryu Kenpo.

To be honest, Kenpo is the first of the "Anything Goes" or "unrestricted" 
Schools of Martial Arts, the real question was, what was the secret that 
allowed the Kenpo practitioner such power?  A saying from the Han 
Dynasty, "Nothing is impossible to the willing mind." was the first 
attempt to put into words the power of the form, the power of the mind.  
Thus in reality, Kenpo is a way of training the mind more than that of 
training the body.  This has left the world with few true masters of the 
Kenpo style for to master this style one must be able to master oneself 
and then integrate both mind and body into one cohesive unit.  It is an 
emphasis on the combination and utilization of body and mind in concert, 
and thus being able to achieve the higher levels of enlightenment, that 
makes the art so difficult.

As one master said, "Mastering others requires force; Mastering the self 
requires enlightenment." thus summing up all that has been learned by 
striving to study Kenpo.  A way of the enlightened, on the path to the 
goal of enlightenment.  A way for all of the forces of nature, and the 
forces of man to go past what has been known before.  Thus as the basis 
for the martial arts, Kenpo is best described by Bruce Lee, who in comment 
on his art of Jeet Kune Do said, "To have no way as a way; To have no 
limitations as as a limitation."

And before anyone asks, Kenpoist can use weapons, although true masters of 
the techniques disdain them.


Harakei is the practice of knowing when an opponent is going to strike or 
do something.  Sometimes decribed as a sixth or seventh sense, it is 
practised by many arts, but actively developed among the higher arts, 
especially in the Japanese practice of Bujutsu, or the study of all 
martial arts.

When training begins, the student is taken into as a room to practice by 
themselves.  The student, when they are truly ready to learn the 
techniques, will first feel a presence of another person in the room, or 
observing them.  When they are ready to go on, they will be able to 
determine from feel alone weather the person watching means to harm them, 
observe them, or help them.  Somewhat difficult to know at first.

When the Sensei decides to teach the student the art, the student is 
blindfolded and sent into a room filled with objects, the idea is for the 
student to avoid the objects placed in areas around the room.  Each time 
this is done, the room is rearranged so that memories of what the room was 
like before will not interfere with the training.  When the student is able 
to pass through the room, the ears are then blocked and the trial begins 
again.  Then the nose is stopped and this is repeated.

After this, training with as a live person begins, again following the 
steps outlined above.  The main difference here is that the student learns 
how to use the currents of air, the small change in the feel of the floor 
of the dojo, and to access the part of the mind that has never truly 
disapeared in the human species, that of the instinct.  Working through 
this, the student comes to be at a level where mind and body work in 
harmony to react before knowing.  They training is long and arduous, 
usually lasting between three to five years for the hand to hand combat.

Finally, training is completed with weapons being used to face one another.  
The weapons used are for practice, and usually do not have any sharp edges 
or killing points on them.  There is a point however, where sharpened and 
deadly weapons are used, and that is at the point where the student is 
about to graduate from that Dojo.  While not usually practised publicly 
today, there are still incidences of this final training technique being 
carried out, especially in the Koga district.

It is theorized that the training is not actually creating a sixth sense, 
but is intensifying the other five senses that humans have available.

This last point is still debated by physicians and philosophers.