From A Different Viewpoint Chapter 25

All Ranma characters are property of Rumiko Takahashi, first published by Shogakugan in Japan and brought over to North America by Viz Communications. Sailor Moon was created by Naoko Taeuchi.

                                    A Different Viewpoint pt 25

    Back at the Tendo Dojo, Johnathon had spent an hour cleaning up and inspecting the contents of the kitchen.  Kasumi followed him around and occasionally he would ask her yes or no questions about where she kept things.

    Johnathon sighed.  "You know, Kasumi, I really don't know many recipes for Japanese meals.  I can tell you have the materials for a few things here.  Unfortunately I don't know how to prepare any of them."  Kasumi meowed soothingly.  Johnathon grinned.  "Right then!  Kasumi, do you have a cookbook?  I may not know any Japanese dishes, but I'm a deft hand at following directions!"  Kasumi meowed, it was a happy sound.  He looked down at her and she nodded emphatically.  "You do?  Great, show me!"  Kasumi nodded again and headed for her bedroom.  Their bedroom actually.  She showed him a drawer which he opened.

    After a little searching Johnathon found it.  "Ah, I see, your mothers recipes eh?  Well, I'll try not to disappoint her."  Johnathon opened the book.  "Eh?  Oh my, most of this is in Kanji, and I'm not fully fluent in that yet..."  He paused.  "Oh, I have an idea."  Johnathon walked downstairs.  "Artemis!  Luna!  Could you come here please?  I could use some help."  The two moon cats awoke from their nap and came into the kitchen.

    "What is is Johnathon-san?"  Luna asked.

    Johnathon laid the book down on the floor.  "I was planning on making a Japanese dish for dinner tonight.  Unfortunately I can't read the recipe book that well.  Could you give me a hand?"

    Luna nodded.  "I'd be glad to.  What are you going to make?"

    Johnathon shrugged.  "I'm not sure yet.  Kasumi, why don't you pick out a simple recipe for me.  You can point it out to Luna so she can translate it for me, OK?"  Kasumi nodded and went to the book.  Johnathon smiled.  "I'll be right back!"  He jogged out of the kitchen.  Kasumi went to her mother's recipe book and started going through it with Luna's help.  Artemis excused himself and the two black cats hardly noticed as they perused the book.  Kasumi pointed to a recipe on the fifth page.

    Luna took a look and nodded.  "That looks good, and it's not too hard to make."

    Johnathon came back in.  "You found something?  OK, tell me the ingredients and we'll see if we have everything here."  He brought out a small notebook and pen.  Luna read the ingredients to him and Johnathon jotted them down in English.  Then he started to search the kitchen.  With Kasumi pointing out where each thing was, Johnathon quickly had figured out what ingredients were needed.  He nodded to himself, grinning.  "Alright ladies, shall we go shopping?"

    Kasumi led Johnathon to the nearby market.  Johnathon made a quick side trip to a convenience store and dropped off a roll of film to be developed.  He bought a soda inside to hide his business there from Kasumi and Luna.  His copying of Shampoo's Amazon book of law was his secret to keep, and his risk to take, not theirs.  The shopping trip went well, Johnathon getting Kasumi's advice several times on which shop to go to or which item to buy.  He got a few funny looks but not many, this was Nerima after all.  As they returned to the Dojo Johnathon again stopped at the convenience store, once again leaving the cats outside.  Collecting his developed pictures and buying some candy, he rejoined them.

    "I'm always snacking."  Johnathon joked.  "I'm quite the chocaholic."  Kasumi smiled at this.

    Luna laughed.  "Just like Usagi.  That girl can never get enough sweets."

    Johnathon shrugged.  "I never gain weight from it either.  I'm always a beanpole."

    Kasumi looked envious, then playfully pounced on his leg.  Johnathon danced away laughing.  He played tag with his wife for a few minutes then let her catch him.

    They started home once more and Johnathon contemplated his plans.  < Dinner, then to Juuban for some help translating this.>  Johnathon considered that.  < Should I involve Ami?>  He nodded to himself.  < I will, she can handle herself, but if I tell her, should I tell Kasumi?>  Johnathon frowned.     < Kasumi might not approve of my methods.  She might not want me to do this for her.  So do I lie to her by not telling her what I'm doing, or risk her disapproval?  Then again... the more people who know, the more that can make a mistake and let Cologne know.  That old woman isn't dumb.  She might suspect I want a copy of the Amazon laws.  There's no telling what she's gotten out of Shampoo.  If Kasumi doesn't know, Cologne can't get her to tell her anything.  Kasumi can't talk, but a few yes or no questions answered under some sort of truth drug or technique could prove disastrous.>

    Johnathon nodded to himself, his mind made up.  < I'll tell her afterward.>

    They reached the Dojo and went inside.  With Luna's translation of the menu, and under Kasumi's supervision, Johnathon carefully prepared dinner.  He followed the recipe exactly, it was a simple dish and was ready by the time Ranma and Akane came home.

    Johnathon greeted them as they entered the house.  "Dinner will be early tonight I'm afraid.  I've got an errand to run tonight, so I've already fixed it.  I hope you don't mind."  Ranma and Akane looked at each other, nonplused.

    "No problem John-san."  Ranma shrugged.  "I can certainly eat now."

    Akane nodded.  "That's fine, John-san."

    Johnathon smiled.  "Good.  Akane, if you'd like you could call me big brother..."

    Akane smiled back.  "Sure... Big brother, I like the sound of that."

    Johnathon grinned.  "So do I, little sister."

    Dinner went quickly.  Johnathon asked about the school and their classes and got noncommittal responses.  Before they finished dinner Johnathon made an announcement.

    Johnathon looked serious but calm.  "Everyone, since my better half, Kasumi, cannot take care of the family as she used to, I would like to cover for her.  I know I can't replace the wonderful job she's always done..."  Johnathon nodded to his wife with a smile.  "But I can keep us fed and things clean."

    Ranma and Akane were speechless.  < Johnathon is taking over for Kasumi?>

    Johnathon sighed.  "It's going to be tough till Kasumi gets cured.  I'll need your help, especially if I'm going to continue teaching at the school."

    Akane nodded firmly.  "We'll help, big brother.  Won't we, Ranma?"

    Ranma blinked.  "Sure, Johnathon, I'll pitch in."

    Johnathon nodded.  "Thank you."  He looked down at Kasumi apologetically.  "Kasumi, I..."  She put her paw on his leg and nodded.  Johnathon fondled her head.  "I love you, Kasumi-chan."  He stood.  "I've got to get going.  I'll be back in three or four hours I think."

    Ranma looked interested. "What are you doing?"

    Johnathon looked at him seriously.  "I'm going to Juuban, I'm going to talk to Dr, Mizumi."  Ranma looked like he had more questions but Johnathon cut him off.  "I'll tell you later, I promise, but not today.  Trust me, OK?"

    Ranma hesitated, then nodded.  "OK, Johnathon, I know you'll do what's best."

    Akane nodded.  "We trust you big brother."

    Johnathon sighed and nodded back.  "I'll not make you regret your trust."  Johnathon headed out then, without a backward glance.


    Earlier that day, as school let out, Yoko had been disappointed to discover Ukyo was taking Ryoga home.  She momentarily considered going to Nabiki for a refund, then reconsidered such a futile action.  The mercenary girl in question was handling her end of the day accounts.  There wasn't much new business, besides a few latecomers with requests for information on Ranma and Akane.  Nabiki smiled in anticipation of the day after next.  The beginning of each school week was her day to collect outstanding loans and debts.  Nabiki always liked that part of her week.  Before she had finished, Hikaru Gosunkugi had approached her, wanting to talk to her privately.  Nabiki dismissed her aids and waited patiently for him to tell her what he wanted.

    Gosunkugi started to ask Nabiki about buying some photos of Akane.  "So, how much do I owe you Nabiki?"  Gosunkugi asked nervously.  Sure enough, Nabiki started to remove her shoe.  Gosunkugi waited till she was done with that and said the phrase again, and again, and again.  Hikaru Gosunkugi was fighting back a nosebleed.  It was hard enough watching her though a camera lens.  Nabiki was stripping just a couple of feet away.  He could barely stand to look at her, but tried to act normally anyway.  Nabiki was only in her underwear and Gosunkugi hesitated before continuing.

    Nabiki's eyes started to clear and she looked quizzically at him.  "Gosunkugi, are you...?"

    Gosunkugi broke in hastily.  "I'm fine, how much do I owe you?"  Nabiki blanked out again and removed her bra.  Gosunkugi took it and put it in his backpack.  Before he could change his mind he asked again.  "H-how much do I owe you?"  Nabiki pushed her panties down, stepped out of them and handed them to him.  Gosunkugi stared in awe.  < Everything!  Incredible!>  He forced himself to stop staring and shoved her panties in his pack as well.  Gosunkugi laid the rest of Nabiki's clothing down on the ground and asked her.  "Nabiki, are you feeling alright?"

    Nabiki started towards her clothing and Gosunkugi beat a hasty retreat, his heart beating like a jackhammer.  < I can't believe I did that!  I can't believe I got away with it!>

    Nabiki blinked.  "Huh?"  < Where did Gosunkugi go?  Is he learning ninja tricks from Sasuke?>  She shrugged.  "Oh well."  Nabiki walked around the corner to see if she had more business.  Hiroshi was there with her lieutenants.

    Hiroshi looked nervous.  < Nabiki still hasn't tried anything.  What's going on?>  He gritted his teeth.  < Fine, I'll play my hand first.  This isn't getting me anywhere.>  Hiroshi brought out a video tape.  "OK, Nabiki, I have a tape for you to see.  After you watch it we'll talk."

    Nabiki took the tape with mild interest.  "What's on the tape, Hiroshi?"

    Hiroshi coughed.  "Just watch it, I have a copy at home.  You'll know what it is about when you see it."  He smiled at her.  "If I were you I'd keep that tape to yourself, however."  Hiroshi walked away.  "Just watch it, we'll talk."  Hiroshi nodded to himself as he walked off.  < Nabiki will back off of her blackmail after she sees that tape... I'll keep my copy for insurance.>  Hiroshi considered.  < If I use it to blackmail her, she'd probably sic Ranma on me.  Better just leave things be for now.>  He chuckled.  < I did get a great video out of this.  I wonder if I could show anyone?>

    Nabiki looked around.  "Well girls, no more new business today.  I'm going to check out this tape.  You two can go home."

    They nodded together.  "Right boss!"

    Nabiki separated from the two girls and looked for an empty classroom with a TV and VCR.  < Now what could possibly be on this tape.  Hiroshi certainly seemed to think it was important.>  Nabiki put the tape in the VCR, turned on the TV and pressed play.  She watched the picture come on.  < That's me, and Hiroshi, yesterday.  So what?  What does he want me to do with...>

    Nabiki's eyes glazed over as she heard Hiroshi's words from the TV.  "OK Nabiki, how much do I owe you?"

    Nabiki blinked.  "Huh?"  The TV showed just static now.  "That's funny, I must have missed the tape end..."  Nabiki frowned.  < Didn't I?  It was just a tape of Hiroshi and me, yesterday... I asked him what he wanted and then...>  Nabiki frowned again.  "That was all?  No, that doesn't seem right."  Nabiki stopped the tape and rewound it.  It took several seconds to start rewinding, then rewound for a little less than half a minute before it stopped.  < The tape must not have been at the beginning when I watched it.  The part Hiroshi wants me to see must be at the front.>  Nabiki pressed play and was surprised to see her and Hiroshi again.  < What?  This again?  What does he want me too...>

    Nabiki blinked.  < Static again?  Ten seconds of footage, then static?>  Nabiki hit the fast forward button and scanned forward on the tape.  After a couple of minutes she stopped it and ejected it.          < Nothing.  What did he want me to see?>  Nabiki put the tape in her bag.  She shrugged.  "What a moron, wasting my time with an empty tape."  Nabiki started to leave, something was bothering her, but she couldn't think of what it could be.  Nabiki left Furinkan High and headed for Auntie Saotome's house, shrugging off her vague feeling of unease.


    Johnathon Dwire got off the train in Juuban and headed for Ami's house.  Halfway there, he paused.  "I'd better call before I arrive."  Johnathon spotted a pay phone and called the Mizumi home.

    An older sounding woman answered.  "Hello, can I help you?"

    Johnathon blinked.  < Must be Ami's mother.>  "Yes, is Ami home?  I'd like to talk to her."

    The older woman replied.  "No she's not.  Who may I say is calling?"

    "Johnathon."  He replied.  "Could you tell me where she is?"

    The woman on the other end of the line sounded suspicious.  "Why do you want to know?"

    Johnathon paused.  < This is awkward, I can't tell her the truth.>  "Oh, she was going to help me with translating a historical text."  < Why not?  It can't hurt.>

    Dr. Mizumi sounded interested.  "Oh?  Well she is studying with her friends right now.  I can leave a message for her."

    Johnathon coughed.  < Best not to get her suspicious. >  "Thank you, just tell her Johnathon called."  He hung up and paused to think.  < Usagi's?  Probably.>  Johnathon started for Usagi's house.  < I don't have her number, but that's probably where she is.>  Johnathon reached Usagi's home in a few minutes.

    Usagi's mother answered the door.  "Hello?"

    Johnathon coughed.  "Um, excuse me.  I'm looking for Ami Mizumi?"

    The pleasant looking woman blinked.  "Oh?  She's not here."

    Johnathon looked slightly puzzled.  "Oh?  Is Usagi home?"

    Usagi's mother shook her head.  "No, she's out studying at a friends place."

    Johnathon nodded.  "I see, thank you."  He nodded again and left.  < Better get over to the temple.  They're probably there.>  When Johnathon arrived, Rei's grandfather apologized.  Rei and her friends were studying at a friends place.  < Now what?>  Johnathon thought frustrated as he walked away from the shrine.  < I don't know where Makoto or Minako live...>  Johnathon frowned.  < I have a sinking suspicion that they aren't studying at all.>  He paused again to think.  < How can I find them?  If I was a Sailor Senshi, where would I be?>  Johnathon walked along, thinking about it.

    He hadn't come up with anything yet when he heard a child's voice.  "Look mommy, Tuxedo Kamen!"  Johnathon whirled and spotted a black cape disappearing over a rooftop.

    Johnathon took off at a dead run for the corner.  < No way, that's too much of a coincidence.>  He turned the corner and sprinted in the direction he had seen the cape go.  < Might as well check it out.>  Seeing no sign of Tuxedo Kamen he slowed a bit to a sustainable running speed.  After running for a couple minutes Johnathon heard a shout faintly from up ahead, and then a crackle of electricity.            < Bingo!>  Johnathon picked up speed looking out for...  < Ah, there!>

    Five girls in Sailor Fukus and tiaras dodged about a menacing draconic figure.  Tuxedo Kamen appeared from one side, throwing a rose.  The creature incinerated the flying object with a blast of flame.  Johnathon took a good look at it as he rushed in, dropping his pack.  Green scales covered a humanoid frame.  Medium sized wings were on it's back, bat like, but probably too small for efficient flight.  It looked muscular and its draconic head shot blasts of flame fifteen feet easily.  Johnathon was pleased to note that there were no civilians in sight.

    "Mercury!"  Johnathon shouted as he ran up.  "Hit me!"

    Sailor Mercury glanced back at the tall man in black running her way.  Her eyes widened as she recognized him.  Mercury summoned up a geyser of cold water in front of Johnathon, realizing what he wanted.  Johnathon dived through and came out with black fur, claws and a tail.  He grinned at her, for an instant, then jumped at her as his grin turned to shock.  Johnathon tackled Sailor Mercury out of the path of a burst of flame.  The Draconian Youma had taken advantage of Mercury's inattention to it.

    Mars, Venus and Jupiter attacked the Youma to keep it from following up it's advantage.  The Youma dodged the ball lightning and energy chain, getting singed by Mars's fire blast.  The fire ball didn't faze it in the slightest.  The Youma charged Sailor Moon, who was winding up with her healing blast.  She didn't have time to finish, and Tuxedo Kamen imitated Johnathon's entrance by tackling her out of the the way of its charge.  Johnathon and Mercury quickly got to their feet.

    The half-cat growled at her.  "Neutralize its breath Mercury, I'm going in."  Johnathon charged and the Draconic creature noticed him as he was about to reach it.  It spun, too late.  Johnathon reached the monster, slashing it with the claws on both hands as he went by.  It roared and turned to follow.  Johnathon ran in a tight arc around it, stopping as his back came around to Mercury.  The creature shot a blast of flame and Johnathon dived backwards.  Sailor Mercury's icy blast shot directly into the monster's mouth.  Johnathon leapt in, slashed it again, and was backhanded by the Youma.  The blow sent him flying.

    The monster was hurt, and choking from the ice blast.  It was suddenly hit from both sides by Venus and Jupiter.  The creature toppled, nearly unconscious and wrapped in Venus's chain.

    "Sailor Moon, now!"  Shouted Tuxedo Kamen.  With the ease of long practice the Senshi of the Moon unleashed her most powerful attack.  The Youma flared like a torch, and disintegrated.

    Johnathon slowly got to his feet.  "Ouch.  Damn thing hits as hard as Ranma."

    Sailor Mars, who had been closest, ran up to him.  "Johnathon!  Are you alright?"  The rest of the Senshi started over towards him.

    Johnathon massaged the back of his neck with one hand.  "I'm fine... But try not to yell my name like that, eh?"  Mars gulped and looked around to see if any civilians had been nearby to hear her.

    Sailor Venus walked up.  "OK then, what should we call you?"

    Jupiter grinned.  "Yeah, we can't just call you "hey you."

    Sailor Moon giggled.  "Why don't we call him Cat!"  She said, using the English word for it.

    Mars groaned.  "Oh brother, you would think of something silly like that, Sailor Moon."

    Johnathon shrugged.  "Cat is fine, but if you want to call me something else, you could call me Whisper."

    Mercury smiled, remembering the name she had chosen for her new pet, before she had found out Johnathon's secret.

    Tuxedo Kamen nodded.  "Whisper it is.  What are you doing in Juuban anyway?"

    Jupiter broke in.  "Yeah!  You really came at the right time!"

    Johnathon shrugged again.  "I was glad to help.  Actually I came for some help myself."

    Sailor Moon looked at him quizzically.  "Oh?  What can we do for you?"

    Johnathon walked over to his pack.  "I was hoping Mercury could translate something for me on her computer."

    Tuxedo Kamen looked around.  "We'd better get out of here before the police show up."

    Johnathon picked up his pack, and his ears suddenly swiveled around.  "About, um, three blocks that way and closing."  He pointed to the south.  "Mars, Mercury, could you change me back?"  They nodded and did so with a warm geyser.  The Sailor Senshi and Tuxedo Kamen all dropped their transformations and started heading off.  They went to the right of the direction Johnathon had pointed so as to avoid the police.  As soon as they got out of sight of their battle, Rei suggested they head for the temple.

    As they walked, Ami asked.  "Johnathon, how is Kasumi?"

    Johnathon sighed.  "My wife is the same.  We're holding up alright."

    Usagi shot Mamoru a shy glance.  "What is it like, being married?"

    Johnathon looked at her sadly.  "I, I was married the night before last.  I don't think I can really tell you what it's like."

    Minako looked shocked.  "Kasumi became stuck as a cat yesterday... You only had half a day!"

    Mamoru Chiba looked at Johnathon with shock and horror, then quickly covered it.  "I didn't know, Johnathon.  I'm sorry."  Everyone was silent then, and they walked in silence until they reached the shrine.  Everyone sat down on the steps.  Mamoru quietly asked.  "How did it happen?  How did your wife get cursed?"

    Johnathon looked at him and nodded.  "The girls know some of it, but the whole story is quite a bit more."

    Makoto put her hand on his shoulder.  "Tell us, Johnathon, please tell us the story."

    Johnathon sighed and his face took on a thoughtful expression.  "Well, several weeks ago Kasumi was kidnapped..."  He paused and the girls and Mamoru gathered around so they could hear him better.  "No, actually it all started eight months ago in China...."  Johnathon talked quietly, remembering how his life had changed.  Occasionally someone would ask a question or comment on this or that.

    "To save you, Kasumi chose to become a cat?"  Usagi said incredulously at one point.  "Wow, she really loves you."  She looked at her boyfriend.  "I'd do that for you Mamoru."

    Mamoru Chiba chuckled.  "I don't think it'll come up Usagi, but thanks for thinking of me."

    Later, Mamoru whistled in astonishment.  "A hundred of them?  And you attacked?"

    Johnathon nodded.  "A hundred and change.  Of all of us, I was only slightly better than Akane... maybe.  The others, especially Ranma, Ryoga, Shampoo, Mousse and Ukyo, were all better than me."

    Mamoru whistled again.  "Oh, I can see why you weren't too worried."

    A bit later Ami stopped Johnathon's story, sounding incredulous.  "Ranma created a whirlwind?"

    Johnathon nodded.  "He calls it the Rising Dragon Ascension.  I'm told, that in special conditions he can use it horizontally."

    Ami blinked.  "Interesting.  I've go to talk to Ranma about that sometime.  And you say Ryoga used a Ki blast?  It was visible?"

    Johnathon nodded again.  "Yup, Ranma can do them as well."

    Ami shook her head in amazement.  "Incredible."

    The story went on.  Johnathon left out a few details, especially Ranma's actions while he was a cat.  That part had to remain secret, for Shampoo and Kasumi's sake, not to mention Ranma and Akane.  He told the rest of the story from beginning to end.  Johnathon slowed near the end, it was hard for him to tell it.

    His voice was somber.  "Kasumi told me we couldn't marry.  She didn't want me... to be married to a cat forever.  I told her, it didn't matter, cat or human, I had to be at her side.  I couldn't see any other place for me."  Johnathon closed his eyes.  "I still can't.  Life without Kasumi... isn't life, not for me."  The girls were in tears, holding back sobs.

    Mamoru put his hand on Johnathon's shoulder.  "I understand Johnathon.  You made the right choice."

    Johnathon opened his eyes.  "I know it."  He looked around as the girls slowly pulled themselves together, sniffing and wiping their eyes.  "It doesn't mean I'm going to stop trying to get her cured.  That's why I'm here.  Ami, I need you to translate this for me."  Johnathon brought out a sheaf of photos and handed them to her.

    Ami looked at them with interest.  "What is this?"

    "The laws of the Chinese Amazons."  Johnathon explained.  "Outsiders aren't supposed to see this.  I photographed a book, but keep it secret eh?"

    Ami nodded.  "Right, I won't ask you how you got access to that book either."

    Johnathon grinned.  "Good."

    Ami brought out her miniature computer and fiddled with it.  After trying several combinations she brought out her visor.  Ami passed each photo before her visor and handed them back to Johnathon.

    She shrugged.  "I haven't ever tried this before, but I think it'll work."  She typed on her computer for a bit then looked up.  "It worked.  OK, what language do you want them translated to?  Japanese or English?"

    Johnathon blinked.  "How about both?"

    Ami nodded.  "Right."  She pressed some more keys.  "Hmmm."

    Johnathon looked over her shoulder.  "What is it?"

    Ami looked embarrassed.  "Um, do you have a notebook and a pen?"

    He nodded.  "Actually I do, why?"

    Ami blushed.  "No printer, and this isn't compatible with present technology."

    Johnathon laughed.  "OK, no problem.  You read, I'll write."

    Ami nodded.  "What section do you want?"

    Johnathon considered that.  "All of it.  There might be something we can use in any section."

    Ami nodded again.  "OK. let's get started."

    Rei coughed.  "Why don't we move to my room?  Better light."

    Soon they were all sitting around in Rei's room.  Ami had activated a holographic feature that had screens facing in four directions.  Johnathon and Ami transcribed the English sections while Mamoru and Rei worked on the Japanese.  Makoto took Usagi and Minako into the kitchen to fix some snacks.  Over a hour later everyone was going over the laws, trying to think of possibilities.

    Makoto shook her head in frustration.  "These laws are ridiculous!  They don't make any

    Ami looked up.  "Actually they do make sense, in their world.  These laws have a common theme.  To strengthen the Amazon tribe, weed out the week, unfit or corrupt, and bring in the strong.  They do make sense, if you happen to be a Chinese Amazon."

    Usagi sighed.  "It sound's like dog eat dog."

    Johnathon shrugged.  "In a way it is.  It's survival of the fittest, except it's also survival of the tribe."

    Minako picked up a page.  "If another outsider male defeats Shampoo. wouldn't she have to marry him?"

    Johnathon frowned.  "Not exactly, let me see..."  He shuffled through several pages.  "Ah, here it is.  Shampoo's pretty much considered married to Ranma.  If she's defeated by another outsider male, he also has to defeat Ranma."

    Mina nodded.  "OK, then why don't we find some guy she likes.  He can bop her on the head and then Ranma."

    Johnathon sighed.  "It has to be legit.  The Amazon's wouldn't buy a fake, he'd actually have to be able to beat them both."  Johnathon shook his head.  "That's practically impossible.  Shampoo is incredibly good.  It might be possible to find someone who could beat her.  But Ranma... I really doubt it.  There might be one or two in the world as good as him, but their probably much older, if they exist."

    Makoto spoke up.  "What about that Ryoga guy, or Mousse?"

    Johnathon frowned.  "Maybe Ryoga could do it, he's closest to being a match for Ranma, but he doesn't love Shampoo, and vice-versa.  As for Mousse, he's a Chinese Amazon too, not an outsider.  The law doesn't really apply in his case, not really.  Since he is already a part of the tribe there is no gain for them if he marries Shampoo.  So even if he could beat Ranma, which he's never managed to do anyway, that doesn't get Shampoo off the hook."  Makoto looked glum at this.

    Rei looked curious.  "Is there anyone who might work?  There has to be some available guy out there.  One good enough to beat Ranma.  There has to be at least one."

    Johnathon looked thoughtful.  "We'll, there are a few possibilities.  Prince Toma from the island of Togenkyo is looking for a wife.  He's a bit young, but you never know.  Um, there's supposed to be a guy in the forest of Ryogensawa that's pretty good.  He's got a terrible memory and has to stay in Ryogensawa, but otherwise he'd do.  Johnathon frowned.  "Taro is young and strong enough... but he's not a very nice guy from what I've heard.  Same for Herb the Dragon prince of the Musk dynasty.  Saffron is a kid now..."  The girls and Mamoru were looking at Johnathon incredulously.

    He noticed their looks of disbelief.  "Look, I'm not making this up.  Ranma has a habit of meeting incredibly powerful martial artists.  I haven't personally met the one's I've just mentioned.  However, from what I've been told any of them could possibly defeat Ranma... possibly.  That's the easy part though.  They'd also have to like Shampoo, and vice-versa, or we haven't solved anything."

    Minako slapped her fist into her palm.  "Well that's what we have to do then!"

    Johnathon looked at her puzzled.  "We?  And what are you talking about?"

    Minako winked at him.  "Yes we!  We're going to help!  And for what I'm talking about, isn't it obvious?  We find these super martial artists, and set them up on dates with Shampoo!"  Everyone looked at Minako dubiously.

    Johnathon blinked.  "That's not going to be easy, but it's worth a shot, I guess."

    Usagi broke in.  "But what if she doesn't find anyone?  Why can't Shampoo just quit that Amazon tribe?"

    Johnathon shook his head.  "That's not much of an option.  If Shampoo's own honor doesn't prevent her, then the Amazons would most likely hunt her down.  This is ignoring the fact that Kasumi would remain a cat forever as well."

    Usagi gulped.  "Oh."

    Johnathon sighed.  "Well, Minako's plan sounds like our only shot.  Unless any of you have a better idea?"  There was silence for several long moments.  "Johnathon sighed again.  "Me either.  Well, Togenkyo is never in the same place, so Toma's out unless he comes to Nerima.  Pantyhose Taro is always on the move too..."

    Mamoru coughed.  "Pantyhose?  You're kidding!"

    Johnathon shook his head.  "I'm afraid not.  Just never make fun of his name if you meet him."  He frowned.  "Herb is out as well. Too unethical... well, he's probably out, maybe Shampoo likes him... nah.  That leaves Shinoske.  At least we know where he is."  Johnathon stood.  "I'll try to get Shampoo to meet him.  We'll see how it goes, but I have a bad feeling about it."  Johnathon frowned.  "That's only one choice too.  Not very good odds."  He shrugged.  "We'll see.  Everyone, I'm afraid I must get back home.  Thank you very much for the help.  I wouldn't know what I would have done otherwise."

    Johnathon gathered his notebook and pages of translated Amazon laws and headed for the train to Nerima.

                                                    End of Chapter 25


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