Please read this explanation of the Junk page.


1412 (Magic Kaito)
A Simple Plan (Naruto)
Aftermanga Daioh (Azumanga Daioh)
Banana March (Jungle wa Itsumo Hale Nochi Guu)
Batman Beyond: Year Two (Batman Beyond)
The Blond Leading The Blind (Naruto)
Bluer Than Violent (Ranma/Ai Yori Aoshi
Chiyo-chichi (Azumanga Daioh)
Chiyobits (Azumanga Daioh/Chobits)
Detective Christy (Detective Conan)
Eff-Rays (Phineas and Ferb
Far From Home (Fullmetal Alchemist/Naruto)
The Goddess of Gryffindor (Aa! Megami-sama!/Harry Potter)
Hamyoujo (Hamtaro)
Hybrids (Pokemon) (Mature Content Warning!)
Jenny (Harry Potter)
(Key)holes (Naruto/Kingdom Hearts)
Kodomo Sentai Chibiranger (Detective Conan/Super Sentai)
MihoKiyo (Tenchi Muyou!)
Night Game (TMNT/Teen Titans)
No Such Thing (Hellboy/Ben 10)
The Other Side of Death (Detective Conan/Bleach)
Ranma's Daughter (Ranma)
Rockman.EXE Version Up (Rockman.EXE)
Ryouma 2/1 (Ranma)
Sakura's Path (Street Fighter Alpha)
Stealing The Philosopher's Stone (Detective Conan)
Stop And Stare (Bleach/Paranoia Agent)
Ten Years (Detective Conan)
To Get Where You Need To Go (Ranma/Dora the Explorer)
Transformers: ReAnimated (Transformers: Animated)
Untitled Harry Potter Project
Untitled Thundercats Project
Love Doll (Neon Genesis Evangelion) (Mature Content Warning!)
There Were Ten Of Them (Ranma) (Mature Content Warning!)

Series:Magic Kaito
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 30, 2012

A retelling of the return of the notorious jewel thief Kaitou Kid.

There are things which move in the shadows...things instinctively feared by men. Instinct drives rational thought out of the mind, to be replaced by paranoia, suspicion, anger, and panic.

And with good reason...for many of the things that lurk in the shadows are quite terrifying, quite cruel, and quite lethal.

But there are OTHER things which stalk the darkness...

* * * * *

The slow, creaky squeal of a hinge sounded like thunder in the night. With practiced ease, a gloved hand shot into the dark cavity, adroitly removing a velvet-covered box. Opening it, the figure gave an amused chuckle as one hand removed the glossy gem within...

...which suddenly sparkled dazzlingly as the beam of a flashlight skewered the darkness. "Who's there?!" The two security guards which had just arrived skidded to a halt as the figure crouching before the small office safe looked up...

...and a bone-chilling smile was the only thing they saw before the room suddenly filled with blinding light.

"Agh, shit! Dammit, what the hell...?!"

"Get him! Before he gets away!"

"I can't see anything!"

Less than a minute later, the guards were able to see again...and the only thing left to see was an empty room, an empty safe, and a slip of paper on the floor...


                           MOST SINCERELY,
                               KAITOU KID.

The two guards looked at one another for a long while after examining the note. The elder of the two swallowed hard. " the police."

* * * * *

//At 0:42 last night, the security camera caught this image of the perpetrator—//

//—guard says the burglar had a smile like the devil himself—//

//—are not confirming rumors at this time that the burglar is the infamous phantom thief—//

//—used some type of flash bomb to facilitate his escape—//

//—Nakamori-keibu was unavailable for comment—//

//—inactive for ten years, but that seems to be—//

//—unknown at this time if the thief is, in fact, the real—//

//—designated by the ICPO as International Criminal 1412—//

//—expert on the thief's infamous career—//

//—witnesses describe as an open challenge to police—//


The television remote nearly slipped from her trembling hands; she placed it on the table, fighting to steady herself. * isn't HIM. It isn' COULDN'T really be HIM, because he's...*

A slow, cold rage began to simmer in her veins, lending a deadly fire to her deliberate movements as she prowled the kitchen, venting her trembling emotions on the ingredients for her son's bento. *Who DARES...! It's been ten long, hard years...and some interloper has the GALL...!*

"Ohayou, 'Kaachan!"

Shuddering, she forced a cheerful smile on her face. "Ohayou gozaimasu, Kai-chan," she said pleasantly. "Breakfast is already on the table...I'll have your lunch ready in a minute. You'll need to hurry, Aoko-chan will be here any minute to walk to school with you..."

"Hai, hai..."

Her blood settled and her frayed nerves relaxed as she watched her energetic son wolf down his breakfast with flair, as though even the act of eating was a stage performance. She smiled slightly. *So much like his father...*

* MUCH like...*

* * * * *

Nakamori Aoko woke up to the sort of "alarm" she hadn't heard in a very, very long time.

"—dammit son of a f...ten goddamn years, and now SHIT ON A SON OF A BITCH that GODDAMN PHANTOM BASTARD INBRED PIECE OF SHIT—"

Aoko's eyes tripled in size, her cheeks flaming red as the loud, angry tirade continued, tearing through the thin walls like cheap tissue. Finally, she had Had Enough. Rising, slipping into her house-scuffs, she stormed down the stairs, into the kitchen, and retrieved an old cast-iron skillet from a cupboard. Homing in on the source of the litany of obscenities, she drew back, and...


"That'll DO, Otousan," Aoko said with a tight smile.

Nakamori Ginzo rubbed the back of his head, grimacing in pain, and turned a wounded look on his daughter. "MUST it be the skillet, Aoko?"

The teenager sighed, shaking her head in amused disgust, and wandered back to the kitchen. "I'll have breakfast ready in a little bit."

Her father grunted, still muttering under his breath as he sat down at the table.

"Light that pipe and I'll stick it somewhere REALLY unpleasant," Aoko chided from the kitchen without even looking.

Nakamori spat out a very unflattering curse around the pipe stem clutched in his teeth. "Aoko-chan, your father really needs his pipe this morning. That damnable..." He began growling incoherently.

"Kaitou Kid, I know, I heard you...the whole NEIGHBORHOOD heard you," Aoko replied, rolling her eyes. She paused in her breakfast preparations. "Is it...really true? Do you think it's really him?"

"It's him," the middle-aged police inspector rumbled. "I feel it in my bones."

"Sure it's not just wishful thinking?" Aoko teased.

"Wishful—?!" Ginzo spat, eyes wide. "Aoko! You're talking about an internationally wanted criminal! How could I want someone like that to—"

"Because YOU want to be the one to catch him, and if it really IS him, you'll finally get your chance again after all these years," Aoko cut across him. "You're not fooling me, Otousan. You're GLAD he's back."

"You're full of it," the inspector groused. After a pause, he added, "But I will admit that...if it IS him..." His mustache twitched. "Well, let's just say I wouldn't mind putting a permanent end to his career."

Aoko smiled. *Good luck, Otousan. And...if it really IS him, hurry and catch him...that thief's already stolen too much of our time together as a family...*

* * * * *

"Yo, Aoko!"

The messy-haired, smiling teen waving to her jogged a little to walk beside her, bookbag slung casually over one shoulder. She smiled back, her bag held demurely in front of her with both hands. "Ohayou, Kaito," she replied.

As they walked, Kaito noticed a shift in his childhood friend's demeanor. "What's wrong, Aoko?" he asked.

"Hm? Nothing's wrong, why?"

"I've known you how many years?" Kaito asked, moving to stand in front of her. She paused, frowning. "I can tell when you've got something on your mind."

Aoko sighed and allowed her shoulders to slump. "Otousan...well..."

"Eh? Something's wrong with Keibu-san?"

"Ah, it's nothing like that!" Aoko exclaimed, shaking her head frantically. "It's just didn't see the news this morning?"


"HE came back."

Kaito's brow crinkled. "'He'...?"

"You know. That thief."

The dark-haired boy's eyes widened. "Oh! That Kaitou Kid your dad spent half his career obsessing over!" He blinked, turning to continue walking toward school. "So he's back? Just like that, out of the blue?"

"Yeah. It's been ten years...why now? Where has he been? What's he playing at?" Aoko frowned. "Otousan's really pissed about it. the same time, I think he's happy, in a way."


"He always wanted to be the one to catch Kaitou Kid. Now he has the chance again..."

Kaito nodded, glancing up at the sky. "Hmm. Looks like rain. We'd better hurry."

"Eh?" Aoko glanced up. "It's a clear day, how do you figure rain?" She failed to notice Kaito lobbing a small, round object into the air. She glanced back at him—just in time to miss him spitting a tiny silver needle skyward. "I think you need your eyes cheAAAAAACK!"

The water balloon descending toward Aoko's head exploded, drenching her. Kaito grinned. "Toldja it looked like rain."

Aoko sputtered. "Kaaaaaaiiiiiiitooooooooo...."


Passersby blinked bemusedly as a laughing, grinning teenager sped down the sidewalk, chased by a wet, angry schoolgirl waving her bookbag as though it were a valkyrie's sword. "GET BACK HERE, YOU JERK!"

Return to top

Title:A Simple Plan
Genre:Self-Insert, Silly
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 17, 2012

A letter written in the final moments of the person who succeeds in destroying Konoha.

To you who are reading this:

I write this as I lay, broken, battered, and dying, pinned beneath a heavy tree which probably stood for a hundred or more years before a single blow felled it and brought it crashing down upon my back and thighs.

I welcome my death, gladly and with open arms, for I have succeeded where others far more powerful and memorable than myself have failed:

I singlehandedly brought about the destruction of the hidden ninja village of Konoha.

First, I must say that I come from a place where Konoha and its inhabitants are mere drawings on a page, words and images that weave and merge to tell a story, a story designed to entertain young boys and sell magazines and nothing more.

How I came to be here, I still do not know. However, once it became clear to me where I was, and that I was, in fact, not dreaming, I knew that the probability of a long life expectancy, or of anyone believing the truth of my origins, was so low as to be virtually nonexistent.

Besides, everything worth doing that I could do here in this world would be impossible for me, since I'm no ninja, and have no chance of a romantic or even casual relationship with anyone I'd desire.

So I sat at Ramen Ichiraku, slurping the best damn noodles anywhere and wondering how I was going to weasel out of paying the bill, when an idea hit me—an inspiration so simple, so brilliant, so PERFECT...

Of course, I immediately knew that acting on this insanely brilliant plan would be signing my own death warrant. And yet...

And yet, it would be a tragedy to let such inspired mischief go to waste. Sure, it was evil, cruel, malicious, sinful, spiteful...

But it was just too PERFECT.

So, I watched, and I waited.

Eventually, as I expected, a certain pink-haired kunoichi passed by outside the ramen stand. I made a great show of falling off my stool and having most of the contents of my pockets tumble out into the street, made a quick apology to the cook, then clambered out into the street...deliberately obstructing the path of Haruno Sakura, who wasn't paying as close attention to where she was going as she should have been.

"Oops! Terribly sorry about that," she said, bowing.

Grinning inwardly, I gave her the nastiest, most hateful sneer I could muster, and spat out:

"Watch where you're putting your fat foot, you ugly whore!"

Then I ran.

That was around noon, and sunset was an hour ago.

I ran as fast and as hard as I could, all over the village, ducking around corners, under shop curtains, through open doors, and making a point of rounding every major landmark save for the Hokage Mountain.

What gave me the endurance to keep going, I don't know. I just knew I had to keep running—but I wasn't running for my life.

No, I was running for THE PLAN.

Every building I put between myself and the enraged kunoichi, she smashed her way through like a rampaging bull. Within ten minutes of the chase, the first sounds of massive structural failure and collapse echoed behind us, raising a dust cloud and many panicked shouts.

By sundown, as I tore through the village gates and into the dense forest, Sakura still hot on my heels, most of the village lay in ruins.

I still wonder why ANBU never intervened in the chase. Or any jounin. Or Naruto. Or ANYBODY.

Maybe they just know not to get in the way of the Pink Wrecking Ball. I dunno.

In any strength is fading, and I can barely see anymore. My hand is shaking, and I'm certain I'm about to drop my pen.

But I just want it to be known that where Kyuubi, Orochimaru, and countless others have failed, I have succeeded.

The one who has truly destroyed Konoha is

Return to top

Title:Aftermanga Daioh
Series:Azumanga Daioh
Genre:Continuation, Drama, Slice of Life
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 30, 2012

The lives of the Azumanga Daioh cast after graduation. This fragment focuses on Osaka.

She woke slowly, the morning sun splashing gently against her pale face through the curtains, rousing her from the depths of dreamy slumber and urging her to greet the day.

Slowly, a pair of milky-brown eyes opened, blinking a few times in the bright morning light. A wisp of black hair drifted across her face and was ignored.

She sat up, still blinking away the tattered fragments of dreams, and swung her feet over the edge of the bed. Yawning, she stood and crossed the room to her closet. For a moment, she did nothing but stare vacantly into space. Then, she reached out to take the school uniform which hung on a hook inside the open closet door.

Just as she was removing it from the hanger, she blinked. "Aaa...I forgot."

Carefully, she returned the uniform to its place hanging inside the door.

A full minute passed during which she didn't move. Then, still clad in her pajamas, she shuffled over to the bed and crawled back under the covers. "Oyasumi," she murmured.

Five minutes passed.

Slowly, a pair of milky-brown eyes opened, blinking a few times in the bright morning light. A wisp of black hair drifted across her face and was ignored.

She sat up, still blinking away the tattered fragments of dreams, and swung her feet over the edge of the bed. Yawning, she stood and crossed the room to her closet. For a moment, she did nothing but stare vacantly into space. Then, she reached out to take the school uniform which hung on a hook inside the open closet door.

Just as she was removing it from the hanger, she blinked. "Aaa...I forgot."

Carefully, she returned the uniform to its place hanging inside the door.

A full minute passed during which she didn't move. Then, still clad in her pajamas, she shuffled over to the bed and crawled back under the covers. "Oyasumi," she murmured.

Three minutes passed.

A knock on the door made her open her eyes again. A muffled voice called to her from the other side.

Yawning, she stood and crossed the room to her closet. For a moment, she did nothing but stare vacantly into space. Then, she reached out to take the school uniform which hung on a hook inside the open closet door.

Just as she was removing it from the hanger, she blinked. "Aaa...I forgot."

Carefully, she returned the uniform to its place hanging inside the door.

A full minute passed during which she didn't move.

Finally, she stripped off her pajamas, pausing in front of the mirror for a moment to look at her near-naked reflection. She then reached into the closet, selected a simple lavender skirt and white top, and dressed.

A moment later, she realized she forgot to put on a bra.

Several seconds of debate later, she decided it didn't matter, stepped into her house slippers, and headed downstairs for breakfast.

* * * * *

"Mornin'," she called with a yawn as she sat at the table.

"Good morning, Ayumu-chan," Kasuga Usami greeted as she began laying the serving dishes on the table. "Sleep well?"

"Un," the dark-haired teen replied. "Where's Tou-sa?"

"He had to leave early today," Usami said regretfully. "It's just us two today. Unless you have plans."

Ayumu thought about it for a long moment. "I don't think I do," she said slowly as she began filling her rice bowl.

*You wouldn't remember if you did, most likely,* Usami thought, sighing mentally. She loved her daughter dearly, but the girl was so scatterbrained...

"I'm really through with school, huh?" Ayumu said after a long moment.

"Sou," her mother replied, deciding for the moment not to mention college.

"No more more Chiyo-chan and Tomo-chan and everyone else. Nobody calling me Osaka anymore."

"Sou da ne," Usami nodded, sipping her miso. She'd winced when she'd discovered her daughter's nickname at school. She'd winced even harder when the grade reports started coming home with simply 'Osaka' on them. However, it didn't bother the girl, and her husband didn't seem to mind, so she'd let it slide.

They ate in silence for a time. Then, suddenly, "Kaa-sa, do you remember all your friends from high school?"

Usami thought for a moment. "Most of them," she said. "I know who a lot of them married, at least."

"Aa." Another moment of silence. "So you talk to them a lot and all, right?"

"Well...we write letters sometimes. I haven't really talked to any of them in a while."

"Oh." Ayumu looked down at her rice, and picked a single grain up with her chopsticks. "This is the first day of life after high school."

She popped the grain in her mouth.

"You know," Usami said, "your friends are probably going to be busy getting ready to go to college soon. You might want to make sure they all let you know how to keep in touch, so you don't lose track of them."

"That's a good idea," Ayumu said.

"And you can let them know where you'll be going to college, and that way they can know they'll be able to find you too."

Ayumu didn't respond for a long moment, her gaze drifting blankly toward a potted fern in the corner.

"Where am I going to college again?" she asked.

Usami's face fell into her miso bowl with a splash. "Ayumu, can't you even remember a thing like that?" she asked with an aggravated sigh.

The teen sighed. "Sorry, Kaa-sa. I should've paid more attention..."

"You really need to get your head together, Ayumu-chan. You can't be a spacy kid anymore. You're a woman now. You have to face the world and your responsibilities."

"Hai, hai..."

"Don't give me that, Ayumu," Usami groused. "I want to know you really understand what I'm saying and that you'll really try."

"I'll try, Kaa-sa. I promise I will..."

*And I've heard that for how many years now?* Usami thought wearily, feeling a headache coming on.

She loved her daughter dearly, but the girl was slowly driving her insane.

* * * * *

With nothing important to do, Ayumu left the house at around nine in the morning to wander around town. A block from home, she bought a cold juice and sipped it as she walked along, enjoying the warm sun and the mild breeze.

No more school. All those times were over. Now every day would be like this morning, lazy and free and—

Oh. Wait. College.

She mulled that over as she walked, sipping her juice. College. Another school. New friends? Would making new friends make her forget her old friends? Would she like college? College didn't have some of the fun things high school did. But didn't they say college had different kinds of fun things?

A hand fell on her shoulder. She blinked, and turned. "Aa! Nobuta-han!"

"Ohayou, Ayu-chan," a stocky, round-faced, cheerful man in casual clothes and an apron greeted her. In his forties, Nobuta was a travelling vendor who moved his yatai around every two years or so. Shortly before she finished junior high, he'd been set up near her old neighborhood; she'd been somewhat surprised to see him selling less than five blocks from her new home in Tokyo near the start of senior year. "Nice day, isn't it?"

"Un!" she said, smiling cheerfully. Nobuta-san was such a nice man, and made really tasty steamed pork buns. She could smell the first of the morning's wares already, warm and ready in the small travelling kitchen.

"Up for a mid-morning snack? On the house, as usual."

"Aa, ookini!" Sitting at one of the wicker stools Nobuta kept around so his patrons could sit and chat, Ayumu accepted a fresh pork bun, blowing on it before taking a bite. "Oishii," she said, laughing happily.

Nobuta smiled. "Glad I haven't lost my touch." He busied himself with preparing more wares. "So, what's new with you, Ayu-chan?"

Ayumu paused in her eating and frowned slightly. "I'm out of high school now. Kaa-sa says I need to get myself together and be ready for college. I've been thinking about college today. I don't know anything about college." She turned to face Nobuta directly. "Ne, did you go to college?"

The foodseller shook his head. "No, I didn't. I didn't even finish high school, actually. I was too impatient. I wanted to be out on the road and with people, and doing what I like." He gestured at his yatai. "I talked my parents into this instead of college, and they agreed because I was a good cook even then...of course, that was a long time ago. I've had a lot of time to practice." He smiled. "So I'm probably not the best one to ask about college."


"Why not ask your dad about it? I'm sure he went to college."

Ayumu's eyes widened. "Aa, sou ka! Tou-sa went to college. You're right!" Laughing, she finished her bun and stood, smoothing out her skirt. "Thanks for the snack!"

"Anytime, Ayu-chan," Nobuta said with a smile as the teen walked away.

* * * * *

Later that day, Ayumu sat in a small cafe that she knew to have fairly good Western-style dishes, the energy boost from her mid-morning snack having worn off at half past noon. At a nearby table, she saw two people who looked to be slightly older than her—college students?—with open books in front of them, writing furiously in small notebooks, frowns etched on their faces.

She thought again about college. It sounded like a lot of work. She was tired of school. Not that she ever really did much in school, though she thought it was nicer to sit out in the sun and do nothing rather than sit in a stuffy room doing nothing.

Did she want to go to college? She knew she was expected to; everyone was expected to. Her parents expected her to, and she had taken the exams and passed them. But did she really want to go to college?

If not, then what?

A hamburger and french fries was placed before her by the waitress. She began to eat distractedly, mind consumed with thoughts about what she might like to do other than college.

By the time she was finished eating, the only thing Ayumu was sure of was that she had no idea what she wanted to do, and that the hamburger she'd just eaten was making her stomach hurt.

And she was sleepy.

* * * * *

Kasuga Iyao came home from work early. "Where's Ayumu?" he asked as he embraced his wife.

Usami shrugged. "Probably wandered into the park and dozed off, like she does every time she goes off by herself for a day. You know her."

"Hai," Iyao said with a tired sigh.

"What's wrong, anata?"

"I was talking to an old friend today. You know, Marubishi-kun."

"The dean of admissions?"

"That's him, yeah." Iyao took off his glasses and rubbed the bridge of his nose. "He thinks we shouldn't bother sending Ayumu to college."

Usami frowned. "Anata, we talked about this. This is the last chance we have to make her pull herself together."

"And if she doesn't? Does the child even have any ambitions at all?"

Usami was quiet for a long moment. Finally, she sighed. "I don't think she does, not really."

"Marubishi thinks we'd be better off setting up an omiai for her."

At that, Iyao's wife frowned. "A-na-ta..." she said dangerously.

"Well, what are we supposed to do? Let her go through life daydreaming and dozing off and eating and doing nothing at all? Usami, the girl needs a focus."

"And college will be that focus!"

"Like high school was? Or junior high?"



"Maybe having a family of her own will change her," Iyao said gently. "It really is the last resort. Something's got to give, Usami-chan."

Usami stood with her head bowed, tears brimming in her eyes. "I just hate that it's come to the point where we're ready to pawn her off on some foolish boy..."

Iyao embraced his wife, and no more words were said for a long time.

Upstairs, Ayumu sat against a wall of her bedroom, chin pressed against her knees. She had been at the top of the stairs when her father had come home, had heard her parents' conversation.

"Omiai," she said to herself.

She fell asleep a few moments later, still sitting against the wall.

* * * * *

Ayumu was up and dressed early the next morning.

Usami blinked as she saw her daughter coming downstairs before the time she usually woke up. "Ayumu?" she asked.

"I'm leaving early today, Kaa-sa," the teen replied. "Chiyo-chan called last night and wants to have breakfast with everybody today while she has time."

"Okay." Usami smiled. "Have a good time, dear."

A short while later, Ayumu walked up to the familiar house where the youngest graduate of the class lived. She pressed the intercom buzzer on the gate; a moment later, the front door of the house opened, emitting thirteen-year-old Mihama Chiyo and her large pet dog, Tadakichi-san. Chiyo smiled happily at her. "Ohayou, Osaka-san!" she chirped merrily.

'Osaka' smiled back and waved. "O-ha!" She blinked at the younger girl. "Where's Chiyo-chan's pigtails?"

Chiyo blinked, then ran a hand through her slightly dissheveled brown hair. "Aa! I decided not to put my hair up this morning. I'm going off to college soon, so I need to look more mature, ne?"

"Aa," Osaka said, looking down. Her expression faded, and her eyes seemed to lose a little of their usual spaciness.

Chiyo frowned and leaned forward. "Osaka-san? What's wrong?"

"I'm just thinkin' 'bout how much I'm gonna miss everyone now. Chiyo-chan an' Tomo-chan an' Yomi-chan an' Sakaki-chan an' Kagura an' Yukari-sensei an' Kurosawa-sensei an'..." She trailed off with an unhappy sigh. "I'm just really gonna miss everyone."

Chiyo tilted her head to the side, then smiled. "It'll be okay, Osaka-san! We'll always be friends! We can all keep in touch, and see each other on holidays..."

"But ain't you goin' to America, Chiyo-chan?"

Chiyo nodded. "Un...but I'll be coming back for holidays! And during the summer..."

Osaka smiled. "I'm glad. I don't wanna never see Chiyo-chan again."

Chiyo took the older girl's hands. "I promise that'll never happen, Osaka-san."

* * * * *

Less than an hour later, the Mihama residence was full of life as the group of friends who had endured high school together, as well as their two favorite teachers, sat around the large, exquisite dining table, stomachs growling at the large breakfast spread laid out before them. "ITADAKIMASU!" everyone cried, then began digging in.

"Ah, this is good!" enthused Takino Tomo. "Better than breakfast at my place!"

"I'm going to go way off my diet eating like this," Mizuhara Koyomi groused, even as she folded some scrambled eggs and a strip of bacon into a slice of toast.

"So Chiyo, you're really going to America then?" asked Kagura, the well-tanned, competitive athlete of the group.

"Un!" Chiyo nodded. "I'm not sure when exactly, but before the end of the summer I'll be moving to America. I'm excited, but a little nervous."

"So what school?" Tanizaki Yukari, the former homeroom teacher of the recently-graduated girls asked. "Harvard? Berkeley? MIT?"

The young girl giggled. "Texas!"

The others blinked. "Texas?" Tomo asked.

"Un!" Chiyo said, taking a bite of pancake. "That's what my dad's setting up for me. An exchange program at the University of Texas."

"Texas..." Osaka said contemplatively. "What's a Texas?"

The others sweatdropped.

"Don't you know?" Yukari asked. "That's where they raise cows and drill oil and have big ranches and big cars and lots of money!"

"UOOOOOH!" Tomo enthused, standing up. "I know about Texas! Everyone wears a big cowboy hat and says 'Haodi padonaa!' Right, Yukari-chan?"

"Hai, hai!"

Osaka thought about that, then looked at Chiyo. "So if Chiyo goes to Texas, she's gonna hafta drive a big car and wear a cowboy hat?"

"I'm not old enough to drive!" Chiyo exclaimed, giggling. "But..." She hopped up from the table and dashed out of the room suddenly.

Everyone glanced curiously at one another.

Chiyo returned a moment later, giggling, and waved around a large white cowboy hat, which she then placed on her head.

The tall, aloof Sakaki stared at her, then her cheeks started to flame. "...kawaii..." she murmured softly.

"UOOOH!" Tomo cried. "Chiyo looks like a Texas!"

"Texan," Yukari corrected. "It's very cute on you, Chiyo-chan."

"Yes, it's very cute," Kurosawa Minamo, the girls' former gym teacher, added, smiling at the young girl.

Osaka frowned thoughtfully. "So instead'a ridin' Tadakichi-san, Chiyo-chan's gonna ride a cow in Texas?"

Chiyo sweatdropped. "I hadn't thought about riding a cow..."

"Nobody rides cows!" Tomo said, slapping her palms on the table and standing suddenly. "In Texas, you ride a BULL!"

"EEEH!?" the others chorused.

"Riding a bull sounds fun!" Kagura opined excitedly.

"It sounds a little scary," Chiyo disagreed, tears gathering in her eyes.

Osaka stood suddenly, eyes wide. "I KNOW!" she shouted.

Everyone turned to look at her.

"Cows are girls, right? And bulls are boys. And they have cowboys in Texas..." She turned to look at Chiyo. " they probably have bullgirls!"

"...bullgirls?" Chiyo asked.

"Un! Chiyo-chan'll be a bullgirl if she goes to Texas!"

"A-anou..." Chiyo ventured, sweatdropping nervously.

"I've never heard of a bullgirl before," Yomi said.

"I don't think there is such a thing," Minamo replied.

Tomo leapt onto the table, nearly upsetting several dishes. "Boy or girl, cow or bull, it doesn't matter! Because Chiyo-chan is going to go to Texas and take the bull by the balls and be the best!"

Everyone stared at her.

Chiyo turned an unusual color. "I don't wanna touch a bull's balls," she whined, eyes constricted to pinpricks. She was visibly trembling; if she still had her hair up in pigtails, they would certainly be drooping.

"Don't they eat bull balls in some places?" Osaka asked.

"It's a delicacy," Yomi nodded.

Breakfast ended shortly after that.

* * * * *

A while later, many of the others had left to take care of things, but Osaka and Sakaki were still at Chiyo's house. Sakaki was presently engrossed in playing in the yard with Maya and Tadakichi-san, and Osaka was relaxing in the spacious furo, not having taken the time to bathe that morning or the night before.

She was about to fall asleep when the door slid open and Chiyo joined her. "Ah, Chiyo-chan," she said sleepily. "Thanks for lettin' me use your furo."

"It's no problem at all," Chiyo smiled. A few moments passed in silence as the younger girl scrubbed and showered, then slid into the hot water across from her friend. Chiyo frowned cutely. "Ne, Osaka-san," she began.


"It' seem a little...distracted today."

"Aa?" Osaka looked at the younger girl, and smiled. "No, really, it's okay, Chiyo-chan. I'm just thinkin'."

Chiyo shook her head. "No, I can tell something's bothering you." She looked down, eyes shimmering. "I...I want to help, because Osaka-san is a good friend, and I just want to help if I can. I don't like seeing my friends upset."

Osaka tilted her head back against the edge of the tub and sighed.

"Please, Osaka-san?" Chiyo asked, tears threatening to break free.

The dark-haired girl looked back at her, and Chiyo was shocked to see a clarity in Osaka's eyes that was very unusual for her, and an apprehension totally alien to the normally spacey girl.

"Kaa-sa and Tou-sa...they're givin' up on me," Osaka began.

Chiyo blinked. "Eh? Giving up...?"

"They don't know I know yet. I heard 'em talkin' yesterday. Talkin' 'bout an omiai."

The younger girl's eyes widened. "An omiai?"

Osaka nodded. "They wanna marry me off."

"But...why?" Chiyo asked, tears brimming in her eyes.

The dark-haired girl shrugged. "I can't ever get my head together, so Tou-sa thinks sendin' me to college is a waste of money. They say I don't have any ambition, so the best thing is to get me married so I can have kids."

"But...that's..." Chiyo ran a wet hand through her brown hair. "They're wrong though, aren't they? You do have ambitions, don't you?"

Osaka was quiet for a long moment. Finally, she shook her head. "Not really." She smiled then, but it wasn't her usual vacant, happy smile. "I'm useless, huh?"

"! You''re not useless..." Suddenly, Chiyo flung herself at the older girl, embracing her tightly and crying against her shoulder. "It's not right! They can't make you do something just because they—"

"It's alright, Chiyo-chan," Osaka said, wrapping her arms around the smaller girl. "I can't daydream forever, even if I can't manage to do anything else." She pushed Chiyo away slightly, and looked her in the eyes, smiling. "Besides, I could end up bein' really happy as a wife, ne?"


Osaka disengaged herself from Chiyo and rose from the furo. Drying herself, she turned and bowed. "Thank you, Chiyo-chan. I feel better now."

Chiyo remained in the furo long after Osaka had dried, dressed, and left. Long past the point where her fingers began to prune from the water, she sat there.


Return to top

Title:Banana March
Series:Jungle wa Itsumo Hale Nochi Guu
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 18, 2012

It's HaleGuu. Do you really think anything I could POSSIBLY say here would make sense?

"And now, class...we'll have naptime," Reiji snored, head collapsing back onto his favorite pillow.

"Oi, wake up!" Hale shook his fist at the perpetually slumbering teacher. "You're supposed to teach a class here! You should sleep at night!"

"Hale, it's okay," Mari smiled. "If you don't want to sleep, just read the schoolbooks, ne? Oniichan can't help the way he is."

"I guess you're right," Hale shrugged. "Ah, I forgot! Mari-chan, are you going on the banana march this afternoon?"

"Banana march?" Mari blinked.

"Un," Hale nodded. "Okaasan told me about it—Chourou and the hunters and all the kids are gonna march into the jungle and pick all the bananas we can and have a big party with a bonfire and roast bananas and dance and sing and have a lot of fun!"

"That sounds great! I'll definitely be coming!" Mari bounced.

"Great!" Hale beamed.

* * * * *

"Cancelled?!" Hale gasped.

"Chourou ate some bad Pokute and can't leave the toilet," Weda shrugged. "And the rest of us didn't really wanna do it in the first place, so we called it off."

"I see," Hale slumped. "That's too bad."

"Anyway, eating up all the bananas at one big party would make everyone sick, and it means I can stay home and finish off all that wonderful booze I had sent from the city," Weda grinned.

"So you talked them into cancelling it so you could get drunk," Hale frowned.

"Haaaaaai!" Weda belched.

With a sigh, Hale headed outside. "I think I'm gonna go pick bananas with Mari-chan and roast them anyway," he tossed over his shoulder.

"Okay! Have fun!" Weda said, hiccuping. Snorting disgustedly, Hale closed the door behind him.

* * * * *

"Sou ka...that's too bad," Mari deflated.

"But you and me can still go and pick bananas, Mari-chan," Hale smiled.

"That's right, we can, can't we?" Mari perked. "Okay, let's go, Hale!"

Hand in hand, the two children skipped down the jungle path, Mari carrying a large straw basket. Pokute watched them from the trees as they chatted about inconsequential things. "Hold on, I need a quick snack," Hale decided, stopping to pick a pair of Manda, one of which he handed to Mari.

"Arigatou, Hale," Mari giggled. "I wonder if anyone else is going to have the same idea you did..."

"I dunno, but if they do, it'll make it more fun, won't it?" Hale grinned.

"Un," Mari smiled. They continued on for a bit, when Hale suddenly stopped. "Anou, what's wrong, Hale?" Mari blinked.

"I...think we should turn back now," Hale grimaced. Mari turned to see what he was looking at...

Up ahead, on a crosstrail leading to some of the other villager's huts, a large banana was striding purposefully down the path, swaying from side to side as it moved. "What the—?" Mari stared.

A pale, flat-featured face with a fringe of pink hair was visible in a hole in the center of the giant banana. "March, march, banana-nana march," monotoned the banana.

"Oi, Guu...what're you doing?" Hale gaped disbelievingly.

"Banana marching," Guu smirked without breaking stride.

Hale facefaulted.

Return to top

Title:Batman Beyond: Year Two
Series:Batman Beyond
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 30, 2012

Unexpected new surprises lie in store for Terry McGinnis as he begins his second year as Batman.

"Busy night."

"Always is when the Jokerz decide to rumble with the T's."

"Well, the city's quiet now. Calling it a night?"

"One last thing to do first."

A dark shadow slipped silently through the neon skyline of Gotham City, gliding at barely air-legal speeds toward the old part of town. A jet black vehicle descended just outside the perimeter of one of the oldest and largest cemeteries in Old Gotham. As the silent turbines of the car stirred up a small cloud of dust, a vague distortion emerged from the vehicle, gliding smoothly across the graveyard.

Anyone looking directly at this apparition would see nothing; anything short of heat-vision goggles would never be able to discern it from the surroundings. Even those who knew to look would barely trace a faint outline in the air, as though all the light in the area were being refracted away from a solid object.

Said object glanced around the cemetery briefly before adjusting a control on his belt. The stealth field fell away, revealing a wraith unlike those normally associated with burial grounds. The slender black figure knelt before a tombstone, head bowed.

"It's been a year," a voice too world-weary for its age rasped from within the pointy-eared cowl. "So much has happened...but this is the first time..." The living wraith glanced up at the granite marker. "The first time I've come to visit you. I..." Swallowing, he continued, "I felt so ashamed...of that night. The way I acted, the things I said...I felt like it was my fault. But...

"I avenged you. I know that isn't much hasn't been much comfort to me all this time. There's so much to be's not just about my personal justice. It's everyone's justice. I can't stop...I might've been able to stop after I got my revenge, but...what I'm doing is too important. Every night I can make sure some other kid won't come home to find his father gone...

"I don't expect you to be proud of me, you know. I'm not proud of myself sometimes. Most of the time. I think I know why the old man's like he is...I've only been doing this a year..."

The dark figure leaned forward and placed a single white carnation on the ground before the tombstone. "I'll see you again next year, Dad. Unless I end up joining you before then."

A snap of glider wings locking into place and the soft whoosh of microthrusters were the only sounds of the wraith's departure from the cemetery. The only other sign that anything had disturbed the quiet atmosphere was the small cloud of dust swirling at the base of a tombstone that bore the legend "WARREN MCGINNIS".

* * * * *

A woman in her late thirties found herself daunted by, of all things, a plain plastic door. Mary McGinnis never had liked giving people bad news; the date and circumstances made things worse on this particular occasion.

It being a Saturday morning, she'd let Terry sleep in while trying to keep Matt, her younger son, from being too noisy. *Thank heaven for VR Webgoggles,* she thought to herself. She glanced down at the disc in her hand and sighed. *Well, I suppose I'd better get this over with...* With a quick knock, she opened the door.

She was greeted by the all-too-familiar sight of her eldest son sprawled haphazardly on his bed, covers kicked all over the place, with the window open and the curtains fluttering in the morning breeze. "Terry?" she called softly.

For a moment, he didn't stir. After another, more insistent call, the teen awoke, rubbing his eyes blearily. "Ugh...mornin', Mom," he grunted.

Mary sat down in the chair by the desk and faced her son. "Terry," she began, glancing down, "I...I let you sleep in a little late, but...there's something I need to tell you. Something I'm afraid you won't be too thrilled to hear."

Immediately, the young man was alert and attentive. "What's up, Mom?" he asked.

The red-haired woman fidgeted for a moment. "There was someone here last night to see you."

"To see me? Who—"


Terry went pale. "Oh, slag. I completely forgot..."

Mary nodded. "I tried to explain to her that sometimes you get so caught up in your work, and the day..."

Burying his face in his hands, Terry exhaled deeply. "Awww, man...and I was determined I wasn't gonna break that date..."

Steadying herself, Mary held up the data disc she'd brought in. "Dana left this for me to play for you. She's really had it, Terry...just to warn you, so this doesn't come as too much of a shock." She slipped the disc into the reader on the desk and turned the small screen to face Terry. The visage of a pretty, dark-haired, and decidedly unhappy girl appeared.

//I'm going to keep this as short and simple as possible, McGinnis,// she said. //No more. It's over.// She sighed. //Look...I know it's been tough for you since...and I know you've got this important job and everything and you have to work late hours. But...I'm tired of being ignored, Terry. I can't even remember the last time we actually managed to go out together. I see less of you than Maxine does!// She paused. //I'm sorry, Terry, but...look at it this way. Now you won't have to worry about making dates to break.// The image dissolved to static, and the disc popped out of the reader.

Mary sat quietly for a moment, watching her son. Terry simply sat on the bed, eyes cast toward the floor, expression unreadable. "Terry?" she prompted after a while.

"It's better this way," he said at length. His voice was soft, raspy, and had an edge to it that disturbed his mother.

"Honey...I know how much this has to hurt," Mary began.

Terry shook his head, and to her relief, when he spoke again, his voice sounded more normal. "Hey, I've been a jerk to her," he said with a shrug. "Putting my job before her...I can understand how she feels. I know I'd hate getting blown off like that all the time. She deserves somebody who'll pay attention to her."

The head of the McGinnis household was impressed by her son's display of maturity. "Don't be so hard on yourself, Terry," she said. "This last year's been hard on us all..."

*You don't know the half of it,* the young man thought darkly.

Mary stood. "Well, I've got a few things to take care of before dinner...could you look after Matt for a few hours? I hate to ask, but..."

"Sure Mom, no problem." Terry stretched as he stood.

"Oh, and..." The red-haired woman paused, reaching into her pocket for another disc and a cred card. "This just arrived from your grandparents. And...I know it's probably the last thing you want to hear right now, but...happy birthday, Terry."

The young man blinked after his mother as she left. "Slag," he groaned a moment later. "I completely forgot it was my birthday..."

* * * * *

The old man looked up from his tea and called to his young protege and successor. His voice was weary, tired; Terry had never quite heard him sound this much like the octogenarian he was.

"It's time I told you," Bruce said simply.

"Told me what?" Terry asked.

"The reason I quit."

The teenager sat down; it only took him a moment to realize what Bruce was about to tell him. He'd once asked, after he took on the mantle of Batman, what the real reason for Wayne's retirement from the fight was. He'd not gotten an answer yet. "Go on," he prompted.

The old man looked at him with the most tired, haunted eyes he'd ever seen. "I pulled a gun on someone."

Terry blinked.

" was a bad night," he continued. "A kidnapping. Should've been routine. I hadn't been using the new suit long. I'd been having a few aches and pains, arthritis...some breathing problems, and a bit of blood pressure trouble. Problems I never should have had, except I was getting old. Mind you, I was still in fairly good shape for a man my age. But...I was just getting to the point where being on the streets..." A sigh.

"I had the situation under control, until one of them blindsided me with a pipe. In my prime, without the suit, I could have taken it without flinching. But that night, even protected by the suit, it hurt like hell. I went down, hard. The punk beat me with a vengeance. He was enjoying seeing the Batman down on the ground, in agony, at his mercy.

"I could tell he planned to finish me off. I got desperate. I...the gun was lying there, where one of them had dropped it. I picked it up...I aimed. I didn't fire, but...he backed off. He ran, and that was it. The cops arrested the kidnappers, took the girl home, and I left. And that was it."

Terry was on the verge of making a comment, but stopped. He knew Wayne's story, knew about his parents, how they were shot and killed...he knew the old man had a thing about guns, despite some of the weapons he put on the suit and the car. "So that's it," he said quietly. "Just like that, you gave it all up."

"Just like that," Bruce said. "I couldn't deal with that moment of weakness, that lapse...I knew, then, that I could never be Batman again."

Terry sat silently for a moment, before shaking his head. "No, it wasn't one lapse that did you in."

"Excuse me?"

"Don't you see? You said it were getting old. You couldn't handle it anymore and you knew it. The gun might have been the catalyst, but it sounds to me like you were looking for a way out before you ever went into that warehouse."

Bruce set his cup down hard enough to chip the saucer. "You think I wanted to—"

Terry wasn't finished, though. "I'm not accusing you. I understand. Look...everyone you worked with before me...the Robins, Commissioner Gordon...they got out young. They knew they couldn't go on forever. You knew it too, but you weren't willing to admit it to yourself." He shrugged. "The only mistake you made was waiting so long to find someone to take your place."

Bruce frowned. "I don't recall finding anything. YOU stole the suit."

Terry smirked. "And a good thing I did, too."

The corners of the old man's mouth twitched, and after a moment, he chuckled. "You may be right," he admitted. "A year ago, I'd have denied it, but...there's not much point in denying things anymore." He paused. "Promise me one thing, Terry. When you're ready to quit, don't make the same mistake. Gotham must always have a Batman. Always."

"Don't worry, I prom—wait." Terry leaned forward, peering intently into his mentor's eyes. "What do you mean, 'not much point'?"

Bruce sighed tiredly, rubbing his forehead. "It's one of the things I wanted to talk to you about tonight. So many things you need to know..." He trailed off.

Terry sat pensively for a long moment, then his eyes grew wide. "You're dying."

Bruce nodded. "I've taken better care of my body than most people ever think about. Even in my condition, I'm stronger than most people half my age. But the fact is, a body can only hold off the inevitable for so long...

"There's not going to be a lingering illness, thankfully, or much pain beyond what I already live with. There's no specific cause...I'm just at the point where my body is shutting itself down. The doctors say that over the next month, I'll feel more tired, need to take longer naps, won't have much of an appetite." He paused. "Within thirty days, I'll simply die in my sleep."

Terry bowed his head. "I'm glad you didn't keep it a secret."

"I couldn't. Not if you're to take on the responsibities I've set for you."

The teenager blinked. "Responsibilities?"

"Well, you're the closest thing I've had to a son in decades..."

* * * * *

"Welcome home, hon," Mary called as she heard the door open and her son trudge inside.

"Hi Mom," Terry replied in a vague, distracted tone of voice. His jacket was slung over one shoulder and his face was a study of intense, brooding thought.

Peering intently at her son, Mary quirked an eyebrow. "You okay?"

"Huh? Oh...yeah. Just...a lot on my mind." He sat down on the couch, slung his jacket over the back of it, and sighed, face in his hands.

"Problems with Mr. Wayne?" his mother asked, sitting beside him and patting him on the shoulder.

The pain in Terry's eyes told her she had hit the mark, but not in quite the way she had guessed. "He's..." Terry looked up. "He's dying, Mom."

Mary gasped. "Oh my God...I'm sorry." She frowned. "What—I mean, are the doctors—"

"Mom, he's 89," Terry reminded her. "He's in better shape than a man his age has any right to be, but he's still...there's only so long a man can live, you know?" He sighed.

His mother looked down. "Yes, I...I suppose so...but still..." She sighed. "I close you've gotten to him in the past year, and...I can only begin to imagine..."

"There's more," Terry said abruptly.

"More?" Mary asked.

Turning to face his mother squarely, blue eyes intent and serious, Terry said, "He's rewritten his will. Today, he showed it to me."

"His will?" Mary asked, blinking. "What's that got to do with—"

"'With the exception of these specific charitable contributions and donations, I bequeath all of my assets and personal belongings to Terrence Warren McGinnis,'" Terry quoted. "That means Wayne Manor, his percentage in Wayne-Powers, the eight million or so in liquid assets he still has in his accounts..."

Mary stared, wide-eyed, at her son. "Wh—WHAT?!"

Terry's lips quirked into a sardonic, vaguely amused expression. "We're about to be very wealthy," he said tonelessly.

Mary fainted.

* * * * *

Mary McGinnis came down from the second floor of the mansion, pausing at the bottom of the stairs to catch her breath. "Whew!" she exclaimed. "I didn't know I was that out of shape until I started walking around this place!" She frowned at the pensive expression on her eldest son's face. "Terry? What's wrong?"

The teenager looked up, his brow creased. "Nothing," he replied. "Just thinking."

Moving to her son's side, Mary put a hand on his shoulder. "I know this is a lot to take in, Terry..."

"It's not that," he said, shaking his head. "It's..." He glanced toward the stairs. "You sure Matt's asleep? I don't want to chance him overhearing any of this."

Mary nodded. "Yeah, he's out like a light. Why, what is it?"

Terry stood. "Mom...I think it's time you knew just what it is I've been doing for the last year." His voice had taken on the oddly raspy timbre she'd heard a few times recently, startling her.

"A...alright," she replied, suddenly uncertain as he led her across the spacious sitting room.

"I should warn you," Terry cautioned, "this is probably going to come as a shock."

Mary laughed softly. "Terry, come hear you talk, you're about to tell me you've become a secret agent or something!"

He smirked. "Or something." And he opened the glass cover of an old grandfather clock...

* * * * *

Mary gasped in shock at what she saw before her. She'd begun to wonder what her son was up to when he'd started playing with that old clock. When the clock swung away to reveal a hidden door, she'd been somewhat surprised, but had recovered quickly. Lots of old houses have weird secret entrances and things, don't they? At least they always did in the vids...

Then he'd led her down a stairway into some kind of cave that was hidden behind the entrance. Her sense of unease began to grow, as well as a nagging sensation that what she found at the bottom of these steps, she wasn't going to like.

Once they reached the bottom, she looked around, and gasped. ""

Terry led his stunned mother through the cave, idly wiping a bit of dust off one of a row of glass cases containing a collection of costumes. He led her to the center of the sprawling cave, where she could take in the full sight of the enormous computer, the myriad glass cases and hanging oddities, and the jet-black cruiser resting on a landing pad.

"What...?" Mary looked up at her son, eyes wide, trying to understand what she was seeing. Her mind was in the process of shutting down, making it impossible to grasp the significance of where she was standing.

"Mom, this is probably going to be a little hard to believe..."

She watched as her son picked up his brown bookbag from a chair near the computer, walking behind a Japanese ricepaper folding screen. A moment later, he re-emerged, only clad in... "Oh...oh God..." Her hands flew to her mouth, her eyes wide in disbelief and horror.

He stood there, with the cowl held in one hand. He pulled it over his face to complete the image, and suddenly it wasn't her son standing before her. Yet it was her son's voice, raspy and disconcerting as she had heard it so frequently in recent months, that issued from behind that fearsome black mask. "Now do you understand?" he asked.

She didn't know whether to nod or shake her head. "''re not really...?"

He nodded. "I'm Batman," he said in that quiet, ominous rasp.

Mary McGinnis nodded distractedly, paused a moment, then did the only thing any mother could do in her situation.

She fainted.

* * * * *

"So Mr. Wayne was..."

"The original Batman, yeah."


"For the past year. That's the 'job' I've been doing."

Mary shuddered, a scowl forming on her face. "How could he...ask a boy he hardly knew to..."

"He didn't, not exactly," Terry said. "It was my choice." He looked down. "There's something you should know. Something I would have told you a lot sooner, but it would have meant giving away my secret. Which I couldn't do."

"More secrets? A bigger secret than...THIS?"

He looked up, eyes haunted. "Mom, Dad wasn't killed by Jokerz. He was murdered by his own boss. When I found out...I became Batman to avenge his murder."

Mary stared at her son, hands once again flying to cover her mouth. "Wh-what?!"

"Dad found out Powers was making and selling illegal nerve gas. Really nasty, really deadly stuff. He hid a disc with the info in the back of a picture frame. I found it while I was moving stuff from his place." Terry paused. "I took the disc to Mr. Wayne, because I already knew he used to be Batman, but he said the best I could do would be to take it to Commissioner Gordon. So I tried, but Powers and that goon of his intercepted me and took the disc." Terry looked down, hands fisting in his lap. "I had to stop Powers, and...I had to avenge Dad. And without the proof, there was only one way. So I snuck back into the house later that night, stole the Batsuit, and went after Powers."

Mary's hands fell to her lap. "Terry..."

"Well, I stopped the shipment of the gas, and Powers..." Terry chuckled ruefully. "We all know what happened to him."

"He...turned into that radiation monster, right?" Mary asked.

"Yeah. And that's kinda my fault. I think. I threw a canister of that gas at him at the pier, and the last time I saw him he was already starting to rot." Terry shook his head. "Bruce said it looked like intense radiation might save someone who was exposed to it, but it looks like the cure was worse than the disease." He frowned. "For all of us."

Mary stood, walking in a slow circle around the perimeter of the cave, taking care not to stray too far into the dim recesses which were only faintly lit by the overhead lamps. "Terry...why are you telling me all this? After all this time?"

"Because I need your help, Mom," Terry replied.

"MY help?" Mary asked in disbelief.

Terry stood and gestured around himself. "I can't do this alone, Mom. I'm not as green as I was when I started, but I'm not ready to fight this war without backup." He walked over to the computer and placed his hands on the back of the large, comfortable leather chair there. "Bruce was...Mission Control, you might say. He worked here, at the computer, doing the part I couldn't do so I could do the part he couldn't do anymore." He sighed. "I've learned a lot, but I'm not him. Not yet. I've still got a long way to go." He turned to face his mother. "There's only three people left on this Earth I'd trust enough to ask, Mom. You're one of them. I need someone to have my back, to work things from this end, just for a while longer. Just until I'm ready to go solo."

Mary laughed shakily. "Terry," she said, shaking her head. "I...I wouldn't have a clue what to do. I'm not...I mean..."

"I can walk you through using the computer and the commlink," Terry said. "Everything else you need to know is already in here. I won't need you every night. Just when...just when something comes up I can't deal with by myself." He walked over to her, seizing her hands in his own, still sheathed in those black gloves. "Mom, Gotham needs me. I need you. Please."

Mary took another look around the cave, then drew in a shuddering breath. Squeezing Terry's hands tightly in her own, she nodded, eyes closed. "Of...of course," she said. "You're my son. I couldn't possibly turn my back on you."

Terry let out a sigh of relief and drew his mother into a silent embrace.

* * * * *

"You killed my father."

Those four words had tormented a once-great man for months as he sat on the shore of an uncharted, deserted island.

"You killed my father."

Looking around, he decided it would be time to move on soon. Exposure to him was killing everything edible on the island. It was the third deserted island he'd left lifeless during his exile.

"You killed my father."

Batman. That little bastard had bested him. Him! Power incarnate, the most powerful man in Gotham City in every sense of the word!

"You killed my father."

Ever since that fateful night, the night his own son betrayed him, he'd wracked his brain attempting to decipher Batman's cryptic clue. He had ordered the deaths of many men in his time, so many...

"You killed my father."

As he ate a sickly banana and tracked the sun's progress across the sky to determine his next destination, he thought back to those last months before the appearance of Batman, and his own downfall. There had been the many dead keeping that little venture a secret...

"You killed my father."

Blight's eyes widened.

*The McGinnis boy...!*

Throwing the remainder of the poisoned banana aside, Blight stepped into the sea. The ocean boiled around him as he began his slow, arduous return to his former empire.

He had a bat to kill. And a traitorous son.

Return to top

Title:The Blond Leading The Blind
Genre:Drama, Tragedy
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

During a patrol, Hyuuga Hinata is blinded.

The enemy ninja had been sighted shortly after dawn.

They had been self-trained shinobi with no village, using only stolen scrolls and vague recollections of washed-out former nin of other villages—the type of ninja who were so inept at their art that when they had gone missing-nin, the villages hadn't even bothered listing them in the bingo book.

In short, they had been easy prey for the four genin, each able to dispatch or arrest two of the eight criminals handily.

"Yattaze!" Naruto cheered as he met up with Shino and Kiba at the crossroads, their designated rendezvous point. "You guys get yours?"

"Hai," Shino replied curtly.

"No problem," Kiba nodded, grinning. He then looked around, confused. "Eh...? Hinata's not here...?"

Naruto frowned. "There's no way those guys gave Hinata a real fight..."

Shino stiffened suddenly. "This way," he spoke, pointing. The others glanced at one another, then followed the bug-using shinobi as he sped through the grassy plain.

"Yeah, Akamaru smells her now, too," Kiba said suddenly, furrowing his brow. "Somethin's not right, though..."

About two kilometers from the crossroads, toward Konoha, they found Hinata, seated against a signpost, slumped forward slightly, apparently dead to the world. There were no signs of the two ninja she had pursued.

Naruto frowned, darting ahead of the others to kneel before the dark-haired girl. "Hinata? Oi, Hinata!" He felt her neck, frowning. "She's not dead...oi, Hinata!"

Hinata stirred, opening her eyes slowly. "Naruto-kun...?" she asked.

"Hey, good, you're awake. You got your part done, right?" Naruto asked.

"H-hai...d-demo..." Hinata seemed to fix her pupilless white eyes on Naruto. "N-Naruto-kun, I...I..."

"Hinata? You okay?" Kiba asked, crouching beside her.

Hinata swivelled her head to her left. "Kiba-kun..."

Naruto grabbed her shoulders, peering deeply into her blank, glassy stare. " okay?"

Hinata fixed her gaze in Naruto's direction, though she did so by moving her entire head. This went unnoticed by the blond genin, but not by the other two. "N-Naruto-kun...h-he said..."

"He?" Naruto asked, frowning. "Who?"

"H...he said...'this is a present for Naruto-kun'..." Tears welled in Hinata's eyes.

Naruto frowned, tilting his head. "A present? From who? What i—" He was cut off as Shino placed a hand on his shoulder and shook his head almost imperceptibly.

"F-from the Ch-Chuunin Exams," Hinata said shakily. "Th...the one with glasses..."

Naruto's frown deepened, his eyes opening. "Glasses? ...KABUTO? Oi, saw Kabuto?!"

Hinata's head dipped slightly, salty moisture beginning to track down her cheeks. "A pr-present...for what h-he said this is..."

"This? What? What did he—"

Hinata's head snapped up, pointing in Naruto's direction, and it suddenly struck him how empty of life her eyes seemed; even though her eyes had always been pupilless and creepy, there was something...

Kiba growled. "That bastard...he didn't!"

Hinata's voice trembled almost to the point of incomprehensibility. "H-he attacked...did something w-with his chakra..." She swallowed, sniffling. "I...I'm b...blind."

Silence followed that statement as the sun crested the pink-purple cloudtops, shining brightly from the clear blue sky above.

* * * * *

Naruto opened his door on the fourth loud, insistent knock. He frowned as he peered at Hyuuga Neji, who stood solemnly on the other side. "Yeah?" he asked.

"Naruto-san," Neji bowed slightly. "The Hyuuga request a favor of you."

Naruto's brow furrowed. This was very unusual behavior for Neji, and the way he phrased—

"Like what?"

Neji paused for a moment, carefully arranging his words. "Presently, all active members of the core Hyuuga household are engaged in or have impending missions, assignments, or crucial business. Hiashi-sama and the clan elders are involved in an annual review of the clan status. I will be departing in the morning on a lengthy mission with my teammates. Hanabi-sama is engaging in a week-long survival exercise with her classmates at the Academy.

"We would be...appreciative...if you would agree to safeguard Hinata-sama until such time as we are capable of providing the attention she requires."

Naruto scowled. "You want me to babysit Hinata because you don't think she can take care of herself."

"She has not yet sufficiently adapted to her present condition to allow her to remain unsupervised," Neji amended.

The blond sighed. "You don't hafta be such a prick about it when she's standin' right behind you, y'know. Yo, Hinata."

The pale girl bowed her head, touching her index fingers together around the handle of her cane. "G-gomen nasai, Naruto-kun...I do not wish to be a burden on you."

"Hey, last thing you are to ANYONE is a burden, Hinata," Naruto snapped. "Don't ever think about yourself like that."

"In any case, will you watch over Hinata-sama for as long as necessary?" Neji asked.

"Of course I will," Naruto replied. "Make yourself at home, Hinata."

Hinata bowed. "N-Naruto-kun..."

Neji stepped aside, also bowing. Naruto tilted his head at the sight of the rather large pile of baggage situated in the hallway behind him. "You will find stipend vouchers for her room and board in her luggage," Neji said.

"Uh...okay," Naruto nodded. He picked up the load of bags, taken aback by the sheer weight.

Neji bowed. "I must take my leave now. Naruto-san, Hinata-sama."

"Be safe, Neji-niisan," Hinata replied, bowing in his direction.

Once Neji was gone, Naruto set Hinata's things inside, then took her gently by the arm and guided her inside, mindful of the probing tip of her cane as she traversed the threshold. Once the door was closed behind them, Hinata turned toward Naruto, her head bowed. "I must apologize for my family, and I...understand if you don't want—"

"Hinata," Naruto cut across her, exasperated. "I said I'd look out for you until they're able to, and I will."

Hinata's head ducked lower. "That...that's the problem, Naruto-kun." She looked up, attempting to face him as directly as possible. "They won't come back for me. Ever." She swallowed heavily, tears welling in her sightless eyes. "Neji-niisan tricked you with the phrasing of his request. The Hyuuga have abandoned me. Permanently. no longer Hyuuga."

Naruto stared at her for a long moment, completely at a loss for words.

Finally, he swallowed. "Well then, I guess we'd better fix up a room for you and get you used to the place."

Hinata blinked. "Naruto-kun?"

He reached out and took hold of her hand. "I promised I'd look out for you, and you know I don't go back on my word."

The blind girl sniffled, wiping at her eyes with her free hand. "Hai. That is your nindo." She paused. " shouldn't feel bound to a promise elicited in bad faith."

"Hinata," Naruto said in a harsh tone. "You're my friend, and...I care about you. And I don't give a damn about the Hyuuga or you being blind or whatever the hell. You need help, I can help you, so that's all there is to it." He smiled, hoping she could somehow sense the expression. "Now stop being so down on yourself, and let's get you settled in."

"H...hai. And...arigatou."

Return to top

Title:Bluer Than Violent
Series:Ranma 1/2
Ai Yori Aoshi
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 17, 2012

Yet another fiancee appears out of thin air.

When I was small, a very kind boy sometimes lived in a house near my family. We would sometimes play together, and once he shared his onigiri with me when I dropped mine because my sandal broke and made me fall.

Then he disappeared, and not long after, his mother also left, selling the estate. I was saddened, because I knew then I would never see him again, even though I'd been told for a long time that I was to be his wife one day, because his mother's family was very important.

There was never a formal dissolution of the engagement, but my mother never spoke of it again.

Ever since that time...I've wanted to see him again. I have longed for it my entire life; I've learned everything I can so that I can become his perfect wife one day.

And just recently, I've learned where to find him...

* * * * *

"Ah, hello. Can I help you?"

Tendou Kasumi smiled, trying to set the girl standing in the doorway at ease. She had short, neatly-styled blue hair, gentle eyes, a cute face, and wore an elegant blue kimono with a lavender obi. Her cheeks were flaming and her eyes were downcast; she seemed quite timid and afraid. The girl bowed slightly. "A-anou...sumimasen..." She paused for a long moment. "I...I'm looking for a Saotome Ranma..."

*Oh dear. Not again.* Kasumi smiled cheerfully at the girl, who appeared about the same age as Akane. "Ranma-kun should be back from school shortly..."

"Tadaima," a voice called from the gate just then. "Oi, Akane, how'd you get here so fast? And what's with the kimono?"

"You have a visitor, Ranma-kun," Kasumi called to the boy who'd just entered the compound.

"Ranma-sama?" the blue-haired girl spun around, eyes shining, cheeks flushing more deeply as she caught sight of him.

"...hey, you ain't Akane," Ranma said, staring at the girl. "Who—?"

" don't remember me?" Her eyes began to moisten, and she looked down at her feet.

"H-hey now...don't cry..." Ranma tried to placate the girl. " do seem kinda familiar, but—gee, you look a lot like my fiancee..."

At that, the girl's head snapped up, her eyes shining brightly, and she let out a cry of joy. "You do remember!" She flung herself at him, embracing him tightly. "Ranma-sama..."


"Ranma, who's this girl?" a voice asked from the gate, tinged with heavy suspicion.

The blue-haired girl in the kimono stepped back suddenly, cheeks once again red, and looked at the frowning blue-haired girl in a school uniform behind Ranma. Smiling, she bowed formally. "Hajimemashite. Ranma-sama no iinazuke, Sakuraba Aoi desu. Yoroshiku onegaishimasu."

*Oh hell, here we go again...*

Return to top

Series:Azumanga Daioh
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 18, 2012

The girls and teachers meet Chiyo-chan's father.

"UOOOOOH! Chiyo-chan, you made all this yourself?"



Chiyo giggled and smiled at her friends. She knew it was showing off a bit, but she couldn't help it, and besides, it made everyone happy, didn't it? Tomo and Yukari-sensei were trying to decide which cake to eat first, while Kagura already had a cookie in her mouth and was reaching for her tea to wash it down. Osaka had speared a dango on a toothpick and was dipping it in her tea, while Yomi was trying to look casual about eating the chocolate cake in front of her. Kurosawa-sensei was daintily nibbling on a cute pink mocchi shaped like a rabbit. Sakaki had one of these in front of her as well, but was simply staring at it instead of eating it, and seemed a bit flushed for some reason.

"Ah! I almost forgot!" Chiyo cried suddenly, drawing everyone's attemtion. "Otousan is here today! You'll all get to meet him!"

"Eh? Your father's here?" Tomo asked.

"Un! He's getting ready for a party tonight with a bunch of business associates."

"Uoooh," everyone said. For some reason, Sakaki turned even redder...

"Sakaki-san, are you alright?"

"Eh? Oh...ah....hai." Sakaki sipped her tea.

Just then, the door leading to the study from the parlour opened. A deep, rich voice called out, "Chiyo-chan, are you out there?"

*That voice...!* Sakaki thought.

"Hai, Otousan! I'm having tea with my friends!"

"Sou ka. Would you mind helping me out for a minute?"


"Is it okay if I come out, then?"


The door opened farther, and a form emerged from the room beyond. Everyone turned to look...





"...aa! Chiyo-chan no chichi ya!"

"UOOOOOH! Chiyo's papa is a weird space cat!"

For truly, what had emerged from the study was a large, broad yellow creature, vaguely cat-shaped, with cat ears and cat eyes, tiny legs, and thin arms. "Yo," the creature called, waving.

" father, Chiyo-chan?" Kurosawa-sensei asked, staring with wide eyes.

"Hai!" Chiyo giggled.

The cat creature turned as it walked into the room, motioning toward its back with one of its spindly arms. "Chiyo-chan, can you help with this zipper? I'm having trouble reaching..."

"Hai!" Chiyo stood and walked over. Everyone watched as she unzipped the cat creature's back, and it fell away, revealing a dark-haired, fair-complexioned Japanese man in his mid-thirties, wearing square, wire-framed glasses. He smiled and waved at everyone.

"Ah, that's better. That costume is a little hard to breathe in."

"You forgot to open the airholes, silly!" Chiyo giggled.



"Nice costume!"


"So it's not a neko papa."

"Of course it's not a neko papa, baka!"

"Awww, and the space cat theory made so much sense, too..."

"Anyway, it's nice meeting you all, but I have to finish getting ready for a costume party tonight. See you later!" With a wave, Chiyo's father headed upstairs, cat costume under one arm.

"Otousan's really nice, don't you think?" Chiyo asked.





Return to top

Series:Azumanga Daioh
Genre:Crossover, Silly
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 18, 2012

Sakaki finds a cute persocon...

1. The discovery

Sakaki stared at the bundle on the trash pile. Wrapped in clear plastic and many bandages, it looked like a young girl, but upon closer inspection...

"A persocon?"

She was very cute, and seemed to be in fairly good condition, made to resemble a ten-year-old girl with short brown hair; the pink and white interface terminals attached to her head were positioned so as to look like a pair of small, cute pigtails.

Sakaki blushed at the cuteness of the persocon. Glancing around, she saw nobody was watching, and quickly picked up the machine from the trash pile.

A clatter alerted her to a data disc falling out of the loose packaging. She scooped it up, pocketed it, and made her way home.

2. Awakening

It had taken a while to find the persocon's activation switch once Sakaki had removed the bandages. She frowned; she'd have to go shopping for some cute clothes for the persocon later.

She thought about the wonderfully cute outfits that this persocon could wear, and blushed, trembling.

The persocon opened her eyes. "Chiiiii...?"

"Chii?" Sakaki repeated.


"Is your name...Chii?"

"Chii...chii yo!" The persocon smiled, and her terminals bobbed cutely.

"Chii yo..." Sakaki smiled. "Alright, I'll call you Chiiyo."

3. The neighbor

Yomi frowned as she looked at the persocon, which was now dressed in a simple high school girl's uniform. "So the data..."

Sakaki pulled out the disc she'd picked up at the trash pile. "I think this is it, but I don't know how to install it."

Yomi studied the disc, adjusting her glasses, and nodded. "This is it. Yosh'...Tomomo!"

A small form popped out of Yomi's bag, and blurred around the room at high speeds. "YOSHA'! Yomi-momi needs me to show what a genius persocon I am!"

Sakaki blinked. "Yomi-momi?"

Yomi scowled, blushing. "Urusai!" she hissed. "Get over here and help me with this data install."

"ARI!" Tomomo squealed, waving a hand.

4. Genius persocon

"with an elevation of...and the current population...but this data is three years out of date. Connecting to the government public information database..."

Sakaki, Yomi, and Tomo stared at Chiiyo as the persocon continued to rattle off tons of information about Japan, Tokyo, and other things.

"...this persocon is very, very intelligent," Yomi said.


"If you don't mind, I have a friend who I'd like to introduce her to. She's an expert on persocons, though she can be a little spacey at times."


"Would you like me to organize your day planner and prepare a menu for the month as well as a budget and a daily shopping itinerary, Sakaki-san?" Chiiyo asked.

"Ah...hai," Sakaki replied, bewildered.

Chiiyo smiled. "Hai! Dekimashita!"

5. Persocon expert

"Your friend sure has a lot of persocons."

"Yes, yes she does."

A persocon with a deep tan, short brown hair, and a rather impressive figure, wearing a swimsuit, walked up to them. "Yomi-sama! Have you come to see Ayumu-sama?"

"Yes, we have."

The persocon bowed. "Please, come this way, into the study."

The group entered the study, where a girl with shoulder-length dark hair, somewhat glassy eyes, and a school uniform similar to the one Chiiyo wore sat behind a brightly lit computer desk, tapping a light stylus idly on the surface. She looked up, and smiled. "Ah! Oha, Yomi-san!"

"Hello, Ayumu," Yomi greeted.

Tomomo leapt from Yomi's shoulder, landed badly on the desk, and skidded across, nearly falling off. She stood up and shuffled back over to stand in front of Ayumu. "Oi, Osaka!"

Ayumu winced. "Tomomo, please don't call me that."

"But you're Osaka! Osaka Osaka Osaka Osa—" Tomomo suddenly went limp as Yomi clicked a small remote she'd just pulled from her pocket.

6. Bean knowledge.

Yomi and Sakaki sat on a sofa, sipping tea and staring.

"Your friend is very..." Sakaki observed.

"Yes, she is."

Ayumu and Chiiyo sat across from them, lost deep in a conversation.

"Ah! So there's not a man named Juan Valdez who picks all the coffee beans!"

"No, it takes a lot of workers and machines to harvest the coffee beans."

"I see! I always thought it seemed kind of weird that one guy and a mule could do so much work. You sure know a lot about beans, Chiiyo-chan!"

The persocon giggled. "But you know some interesting things about beans too, Ayumu."

Sakaki leaned toward Yomi. "Do you think they'll ever stop talking about beans long enough to get around to the subject of persocons?"

Yomi shrugged. "Who knows?"

7. Yorokonde

"You like your persocon a lot, don't you, Sakaki-senpai?"

Sakaki looked at the girl who had helped her get her present job. She was young, though probably not much younger than Sakaki herself, and she was very cute and energetic. Her seeming worship of Sakaki unnerved the taller girl somewhat, but she tried not to let it show, as Kaori was really very nice. "Ah...hai. Chiiyo-chan is very helpful and very nice and a lot of fun to have around."

Kaori looked down. "Sou ka..." She sighed, a slightly glazed look in her eyes. "I guess...I guess there's no way I can compete with a persocon..."

8. The bake shoppe

"Chiiyo has been working very well, Sakaki-san. She really brings in the customers."

"I'm glad."

"Wouldn't you consider working here too, Sakaki-san?"

Sakaki eyed the baker warily. His vacant stare (made more so by his thick glasses) and gaping-jawed expression unnerved her, and she was truthfully a bit nervous about letting Chiiyo work for the man, but he seemed to have a lot of good qualities as well. Still...

"I'm sorry, I already have a good job that I like."

"Oh. I see..."

Chiiyo emerged from the back room wearing an outfit that consisted of a white leotard, an abbreviated pink skirt, puffy little pink boots, elbow-length white gloves, and a pink, cake-shaped hat with a big fuzzy cherry on top. "How do I look?" she asked.

Sakaki blinked, and blushed. "Kawaii..."

"Isn't it?" Kimura asked. "It's the same design as the outfit I made for a girl who used to shop here all the time..."

Sakaki blinked. "For...a customer?"

Kimura nodded. "For a customer." He sighed, then bellowed, "SHE STOPPED COMING!"

Sakaki and Chiiyo both blinked.

Kimura slouched into the kitchen area. "I need to finish a customer's order."

"He's strange," Chiiyo said.

Sakaki nodded.

Across town, Kaori sneezed and shivered slightly...

Return to top

Title:Detective Christy
Series:Detective Conan
Genre:Alternate Universe
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

On that fateful night, instead of being shrunken into the body of a little boy, Kudou Shinichi is turned into a little girl...

"So...that Sonoko chick still trying to get a date out of you?"


Two friends, Kudou Shinichi and Mouri Ran, strolled casually down the sidewalk, headed for the Tropical Land amusement park. Kudou Shinichi was a tall, lanky boy with messy dark hair and piercing blue eyes; he had won national fame as a high school detective, solving many difficult cases for the Tokyo Metropolitan Police first division.

Ran was also tall, but slightly stockier; his build was rather more muscular than his friend's, due to his strict martial arts training and his ongoing rivalry with his 'senpai', Kyougoku Makoto. His long brown hair was tied back into a ponytail, which lent him a somewhat rogueish appearance which had, to his chagrin, attracted the attention of the talkative, airheaded rich girl from their class, Suzuki Sonoko.

If the chatty girl ever discovered the truth about Ran and Shinichi, it would be a disaster. Fortunately, they were VERY good at hiding their most precious secret.

With their parents, they pretty much had to be. (Though Shinichi often suspected his father knew. It simply wasn't possible to hide anything from Kudou Yusaku.)

"Just one question, Ran."


"WHY Tropical Land?"

Ran shrugged. "Just a whim."


* * * * *

"Ran...I think those guys are up to something."

"I think you're right. Let's go."

The two boys began to chase the two black-clad men. However, as they dashed off, an unnoticed broken shoelace caused Ran's sneaker to shift, catching him up and tripping him. He swore loudly as he went down, scraping his knee roughly on the pavement, and rolled to a sitting position, cradling his ankle.

Shinichi skidded to a halt. "Ran?"

"I'm okay, I just twisted it. Go!"

Frowning, the teen detective nodded, dashing off after their quarry.

* * * * *

The pain was indescribable. Shinichi felt like his bones were melting, and his heart was about to explode...

* * * * *

In a dark, secluded laboratory in a facility hidden away from prying eyes, an auburn-haired young woman frowned at a small plastic drawer full of capsules. "Tanqueray," she called out to a lab assistant.

"Yah, Sherry?"

"You filled the supply ticket Gin put in, didn't you?"


"Then there shouldn't be this many capsules of APTX-4869 in this drawer."

Tanqueray scratched his head. "4869? I thought it was 1039."

Sherry's head snapped around, her eyes narrowing sharply. "1039? You gave Gin APTX-1039?"

"Well, yeah."

The chemist cursed. "I'd better warn him not to use it, then. That formulation is completely unstable. I meant to destroy the samples..." She frowned. "How'd you make such a huge mistake?"

Tanqueray shifted. "Well, I..."

Sherry advanced on the man, hands on her hips. "You've been smoking marijuana against my orders again, haven't you?" When he didn't answer, she sighed, running a hand through her bangs in frustration. "Get out of my lab." As he left, Sherry pulled a phone out of her pocket, and dialed. "Gin? There's a small problem..."

* * * * *

The small figure ran through the rainy night in clothes much too large, mind racing. His body had shrunk; what had been in that pill the men in black had given him? When he'd caught sight of his reflection in that store window, it had been the single most frightening experience of his life.

He dashed madly for home, desperately trying to plan his next move, and idly hoping this was all a bad dream...

* * * * *

It hadn't been easy, convincing Agasa-hakase of his identity, but he'd managed. However, the kindly inventor had seemed rather ill at ease, as though something wasn't quite right...well, something besides the obvious.

Now, Shinichi was in his own house, had snagged a towel to dry off with, and planned to change into some of his old kiddie clothes as soon as he could drag the heavy, sodden adult clothes off of his small frame.

Once Shinichi had kicked his sodden boxers across the room, he turned and caught sight of himself in the mirror...

Downstairs, Agasa jumped in alarm as an earsplitting shriek rang through the stuffy old house.

* * * * *

Agasa raced into the Western-style bathroom to find the shrunken Shinichi standing there, nude, staring into the mirror. He could see the child's wide, shocked eyes in the reflection. "Oi, Shinichi...what?"

"DON'T LOOK!" Shinichi screamed shrilly, grabbing and throwing a sneaker at the old man.

Agasa's eyes widened, even as the thrown shoe smacked him wetly in the face, and a vivid blush crept over his cheeks. "Oh...oh my..."

"GET OUT! ECCHI!" Shinichi snapped out the fluffy white towel and rapidly whipped it around his—

—no, her body. She then promptly sank to the floor and began to cry. "Just...just get out...leave me alone..."

Agasa mutely turned, unable to think of anything to say, and left the room.

* * * * *

The girl blushed cutely as she looked up at the tall, brown-haired boy. Rubbing the back of her head, she stammered, "I, suitcase got kinda...lost, hehehe...and I fell in some mud and my clothes got ruined, so I had to borrow some old stuff that belongs to the niichan that lives here."

Ran frowned. "Well, for right now I guess it's okay, need some proper clothes for a little girl."

"Ah...yeah. For a little girl. Heehee."

"Let me call my mom, I bet she can take you on an emergency shopping trip." Ran dug around in his pocket for his mobile. While he did so, he tilted his head curiously at the little girl. "By the way, I didn't get your name."

" Aheh..." The girl sweated nervously. "Anou..." She thought about her cover story—being Agasa-hakase's grandniece—and, catching sight of the spine of a book across the study, inspiration struck. Smiling, she brightly replied, "Christy! Agasa Christy."

Ran smiled. "Saa. Well, Christy-chan, let me just call my mom, and we'll have you all taken care of, okay?"

"Un!" *I am NEVER going to live this down. This is humiliating...*

Return to top

Series:Phineas and Ferb
Genre:Silly, Random
Content Rating:18+ (Mature content)
Updated:December 12, 2012

Doof's latest scheme causes problems for everyone in Danville.

Summer morning in Danville. It always starts the same: bright sun, clear skies, two stepbrothers sitting under a big tree in their backyard with their pet platypus, and a neurotic teenage girl hoping to expose her brothers' zany schemes and wacky inventions once and for all.

And so it was on this, yet another sunny summer day...

Until a bright white flare exploded in the sky with the muted *whump* of a distant sonic boom.

Phineas looked up at the sky, blinking. "What the fuck was that?"

His brother stared oddly at him. Before he could ask what was wrong...

"PHINEAS!" Candace yelled, erupting from the house. "I fucking saw that! In the fucking sky just now! What the fuck are you boys up to?"

Both boys stared at Candace. "Uhh..." Phineas said. Ferb shook his head and pulled a bar of soap out of his overalls.

"You are so fucking busted," Candace warned.

"Okay, first of all, stop fucking saying that word," Phineas replied. "Second of all, we haven't fucking done anything yet, and third of all, I don't know what the fuck that was either."

He found a bar of soap jammed in his mouth, and spluttered.

"Well, I'm DEFINITELY fucking telling Mom about your MMMMPH!" Another bar of soap found its way into Candace's mouth.

Phineas spat his soap out. "Something's really fucking wrong here—hey, where the fuck's Perry?"

* * * * *

Perry slid into his seat in his lair and activated the video screen.

//Agent P,// Major Monogram began briskly, //Doofenshmirtz is up to his usual fucking evil schemes.//

Perry blinked.

//Ten fucking minutes ago, everybody in the Tri-State Area started fucking swearing every other fucking word. We don't fucking know why, and we can't fucking stop. This has Doofenshmirtz written all the fuck over it. Find out what the fuck his plan is, and put a fucking stop to it. Good luck.//

Perry saluted, and commenced the mission.

* * * * *

"Will you cut it out with the fucking soap already, Ferb?" Phineas complained. "I'm not fucking doing it on PURPOSE, I swear!"

"Yes, yes you do."

"Not what I fu—"

"Hey Phineas!" Isabella bounced into the yard. "Whatcha fuckin' dooooooin'?" She froze abruptly, eyes wide with horror. "Oh my fucking gosh, did I just—?"

"Yeah, it's kinda fuckin' goin' around," Phineas replied. He idly deflected Ferb's bar of soap with one hand, and glanced up at the sky. "It started with that fucking light..."

* * * * *

"Ahh, Perry the fucking Platypus! Excellent fucking timing!"

Perry glowered at him.

"I see you've fucking noticed something's fucked up in the Tri-State Area," Doofenshmirtz began. "Well, allow me to fucking explain...

"When I was a boy, I fucking said a bad word without fucking meaning to, and my father forced a whole fucking bar of soap down my throat. I was fucking spitting soap suds for days! So one day, I was fucking buying soap, and I remembered that, and wouldn't you fucking know it, I came up with a fucking brilliant plan!

"You see, I decided to fucking build...the Effinator!" Doofenshmirtz proudly proclaimed, gesturing at a machine on a pedestal in the center of the room. "For weeks now, the fucking Effinator has been saturating the Tri-State Area with subliminal F-rays! This morning, I triggered the fucking activation pulse, and with the fucking F-rays activated, now everyone in the fucking Tri-State Area is fucking swearing uncontrollably!" He rubbed his hands together and cackled. "And I invested in every fucking soap-making company I could. Imagine how much fucking soap will be shoved down everyone's fucking throats...I'll have thrown the entire fucking Tri-State Area into disarray, AND made a fucking fortune!"

Perry grabbed a giant wrench and demolished the Effinator.

Doofenshmirtz cackled loudly. "You're too fucking late, Perry the Platypus!" he crowed. "You see, the only fucking way to stop the F-rays is with a fucking Washyourbrainoutwithsoap-inator...and I never fucking built one!" He laughed until he started coughing. "You've fucking lost, Perry the Platypus!"

Eyes narrowed, Perry stormed out of the lair.

* * * * *

Phineas paced under the tree, agitated. "I don't know what the fuck to do!" he ranted. "This fucking potty-mouth thing is making it hard to fucking think!"

"So fucking think of a way to fucking stop it!" Isabella suggested, covering her face and blushing. "Oh no..."

"But I don't—oh, there you are Perry. Hey, what the fuck's Perry holding?"

Ferb extracted a rolled-up document from the platypus' bill and unrolled it, studying it with his head tilted. Wordlessly, he passed it to Phineas.

"Washyourbrainoutwithsoap-inator..." Phineas blinked. "Fucking erases subliminal F-rays that fucking cause uncontrollable swearing..." He looked up brightly. "Ferb, I know what we're fucking gonna do today!"

* * * * *

"Okay, let's see if that worked..." Phineas said after the brothers switched on the device they'd spent most of the morning building. "Am I saying bad words anymore?"

Ferb shook his head.

"Cool. Isabella, you?"

"I...I don't think so..."

"Ferb, how about you?"

Ferb cleared his throat.

"Badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger badger mushroom, mushroom...nope, I'm good."

"Cool. And we still have the whole afternoon to do something really fun!"

* * * * *

Doofenshmirtz trembled in rage as he turned off the television, where the news reported that the strange uncontrollable swearing that had overtaken the Tri-State Area had ended as mysteriously as it had begun.

"FUCK YOU, PERRY THE PLATYPUS!!" he yelled angrily. "And no, that one wasn't the Effinator, that was on purpose." Sighing, he stuffed a bar of soap in his mouth.

Return to top

Title:Far From Home
Series:Fullmetal Alchemist
Genre:Crossover, Drama, Romance
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 14, 2012

Two brothers, survivors of a shipwreck, wash up on a beach in a land far from home...

He sat on the shore, the sound of the gently lapping waves and the crying gulls providing a soothing background music to his writing.

The research part of his little hobby was the most fun, of course, and best done in an environment populated by many people; the actual writing, on the other hand, he preferred to do in peaceful solitude, preferably at dusk or at dawn, the times of day which most inspired him.

He loved writing on the beach. It was so relaxing, so peaceful, so inspirational...and so remote and quiet. No distractions, no noisy, obnoxious little brats...

A sudden, loud clanking shattered the peaceful stillness, causing him to make a nasty, awkward brush stroke, marring his precision calligraphy. He glanced up, annoyed, and saw a hulking mass of metal roll down a rock to land on the sandy shore. "What in the...?"

Sighing and pocketing his writing materials, he rose to his feet, brushing sand and moss from his pants, and leapt from the rock upon which he was perched, lighting gracefully on the beach. He walked across to the noisy intruder, and slowed when he heard a young voice begin to utter a litany of...well, he supposed they were curses; the tongue was unfamiliar to him. The metal mass shifted and rose onto two legs; he realized it was a figure wearing armor.

However, as the figure rose, its helmet fell off...and revealed an empty space. His eyes widened.

A volley of muttering came from the figure, which bent down to scoop up the empty helmet...then paused, turning to face him. The body language indicated startlement, embarrassment, and wariness, and the headless figure began to stammer in that foreign tongue.

*I don't sense any malice or evil intent,* he thought. *I also, this isn't a puppet or a genjutsu...something is not right here.* His eyes widened further. *This is a living person...a human being...or at least, it used to be. What in the...?*

As the figure reattached its helmet (head?), he held up his hands in a gesture of greeting. "I don't speak your language, friend," he said calmly, "but hopefully you'll understand I intend you no harm."

The helmet cocked sideways curiously. It then knelt and, ponderously, drew a strange series of symbols in the damp sand. It then looked back up at him inquisitively.

He shrugged, shaking his head.

The figured nodded, frowning, and looked at the sea. It crouched again and drew a different, more complicated symbol on the ground. It then gathered a double handful of sand and placed it in the center of the symbol it had drawn, and placed both hands flat on the ground. There was a bright blue flash of light...

...and the pile of sand had been replaced with a small, clear glass figurine. It looked like a teenage boy with intense eyes and a long pigtail.

"Amazing. How...?"

The armored figure glanced up at him again, gesturing first at the figurine, then pointing at its own eyes.

Clearly getting the message, the man shook his head. "Sorry. Doesn't look familiar to me."

The armor bowed its head, then picked up the figurine, cradling it protectively.

The old man's heart went out to this strange apparition. Whoever the young man was, he clearly meant a lot to the armor being. Drawing himself up, he gestured to his own chest, and spoke slowly and clearly, "Jiraiya."

The armor studied him for a long moment, then seemed to brighten in understanding, and placed a gauntleted hand to its own chest. "Alphonse."

* * * * *

Tenten sighed as she reclined on the beach, sprawled out on a large towel, clad in an off-white one-piece swimsuit and sunglasses. "This is nice," she mused to nobody in particular.

Inwardly, she felt a slight pang at slacking off on her training. That was, ostensibly, what she was out here on the shore to do. Though the village was recovering nicely from the attack by Otogakure and Sunagakure, there were still plenty of missions to go around; missions that were breaking up teams were getting more and more common. Neji had been sent away with the entire active Hyuuga clan on a mission that required their unique bloodline limit; Gai-sensei and Lee had been dispatched to investigate an underground fighting tournament which was attracting many unsavory types to towns and villages far too close to the daimyo's seat of government in their own nation. Tenten wasn't sure what sort of trouble had arisen to require multiple Byakugan users, but it was obvious why the two eerily similar taijutsu masters were sent to break up an illegal tournament ring. This, however, left her in an awkward position: there were no solo missions for kunoichi with weapons specialty, and no active team needed an extra hand.

Therefore, Tenten had requested time to take a training sabbatical, and the Hokage had readily agreed; she'd even suggested this particular beach as a tranquil place.

More than once, Tenten wondered if perhaps Tsunade-hime had lain out on the beach sunbathing instead of training too.

A sudden sound snapped her out of her idle musings; a familiar, metallic sound. She instantly rolled into a crouch, two shuriken and a kunai which had been hidden in the sand beside her in hand. She heard a grunt of exertion; a male voice. She frowned. *It'd be just my luck to have some would-be rapist pervert show up...*

Another metallic sound, another grunt. Tenten cautiously stood up, carefully edging along the beach to the source of the sounds. When she located the target, she gasped.

A boy, no older than herself, lay sprawled on the wet sand. His amber eyes were unfocused; his long, braided blonde hair was matted and dissheveled. He was shirtless; his build was slight but well-toned, and...

...well, he had one arm. One real arm, at any rate. His right arm, from the shoulder down, was made of metal.

"Are you...alright?" She asked hesitantly. The boy looked up at her, his eyes seeming to pass over and around her without really seeing her. He coughed, a mouthful of sand tinted red with blood issuing from his mouth.

"Al..." he rasped. Then he collapsed face-first on the shore, his right arm clanking ominously as the artificial shoulder hit the damp sand.

* * * * *

Twelve hours had passed since Tenten found the young man on the beach. Carrying him back to the cottage she was using had taken quite a bit of effort; he'd seemed heavier than he should be, even accounting for the metal arm.

Once she'd gotten him in and stripped off his remaining clothing (blushing all the while), she discovered the reason for the added weight. His left leg was also made of metal. "What on earth happened to you?" she had wondered aloud as she carefully cleaned and dried the boy off with two large towels, and began inspecting his artificial limbs for rust or sand damage—she knew very little about machines, but knew that sand getting into gears was bad for them, and it stood to reason it went the same for mechanical limbs.

Ultimately, she decided that it'd be a bad idea to tinker too much with what appeared to be some very delicate and precise engineering, so she settled for doing only what she knew best from her own hidden weapons experience—cleaning and oiling the metal. After she had finished her ministrations, she'd tightly wrapped the boy in linens and blankets, and begun preparing medicinal broth for his high fever.

Now, she sat beside him, changing the cloth on his forehead, watching for any signs he might regain consciousness. She'd managed to get small amounts of broth into him; he hadn't coughed up anything more since he passed out, so she began to worry less about internal injuries.

* * * * *

Communication, Jiraiya mused, was a very interesting thing. Two people with no common language striving to understand one another...

He just wished it was a pretty woman instead of a strange, empty suit of armor. But, you take what life gives you...

Through a long array of attempted dialogue, pantomime, crude drawings, and figurines made from sand, the non-man had managed to convey his situation to the elder shinobi.

His name was Alphonse Elric, and he was fourteen years of age. Jiraiya had been right in his initial assessment; Alphonse was human at one point. The young man he sought was his brother, Edward. They had been on a ship at sea, encountered a storm, and Alphonse had been washed away on a raft hastily constructed from remnants of the deck after the vessel had smashed. He did not know what had become of his brother.

These things had been rather straightforward, told through a series of drawings and gestures. Other details, however, had been somewhat more confusing, and he still was not entirely certain he had it all straight.

Alphonse and his brother apparently both possessed the ability to convert materials from one form to another. This amazing talent was not without its limits; it seemed the output could not exceed the amount of raw materials consumed (which was sensible—you can't create more than you have to work with in the first place), and apparently, utilizing this ability on living things had rather grim results.

Based on Alphonse's diagrams and transmuted figurines, with which he had put on a slightly embarrassing "puppet show", Jiraiya learned—again, if he was understanding properly—that the boys' mother had died some time ago. They had attempted to resurrect her, and had paid dearly for it. Edward had lost two limbs, and Alphonse had lost his entire body. Somehow, his soul had been attached to an empty shell of armor, which explained his continued existence.

Jiraiya had not, for his part, been as capable of communicating information about himself—of course, he had not gone out of his way to do so. He was, after all, a ninja. He had, however, agreed to help Alphonse search for his brother for a while. He rather doubted they would find him, but he intended to take Alphonse to Konoha and request a search on his behalf as a C-rank mission. Alphonse didn't appear to have anything on him that would count as money, but his unusual abilities would come in handy in the reconstruction efforts...

* * * * *

Al repressed a sigh as his companion sat back on his haunches, rubbing his chin in thought. Although he thought he'd managed to get the gist of his story across to the elder man, with the horrendous language barrier between them, he simply couldn't be certain.

Jiraiya suddenly sat forward and began tracing a symbol in the dirt. It didn't look like the pictographic markings that had made up his earlier attempts at communication; this was a very stylized symbol, a spiral with an extruded terminus, and an additional marking added on to form the shape eye, perhaps? A leaf? He frowned inwardly; it could be either, really.

The white-haired man then gestured first to Al, then to himself, and then tapped the symbol on the ground. At Al's headshake, the man smirked, and picked up the figure of Ed the living armor had made earlier. He once again pointed to Al, then to himself, then tapped the symbol on the ground, and then gestured meaningfully from the symbol to the figure.

"I...don't get it," Al admitted, knowing his words would mean nothing, but hoping his tone conveyed his ignorance.

Jiraiya sighed. He tapped himself and pointed at Al, then tapped the symbol on the ground again. He placed the Ed figurine a short distance from that, then began drawing stick figures around the symbol, with arrows pointing from them to the figurine.

Al gasped with comprehension. "You want to take me someplace where someone can help me find my brother?"

The old man grinned; he hadn't understood Al's words, but he knew nevertheless that the bodiless youth had gotten the gist of things. He then pulled out a scroll and a brush, and began rapidly scrawling characters Al couldn't make heads nor tails of. He finished by making a marking identical to the one he wore on his brow, then made several of those strange hand gestures he was fond of making, and pressed both thumbs to the last symbol. The scroll began to glow and shimmer, and then...

If Al could blush, he would have. The writing had vanished entirely, to be replaced with something...very, very lewd. Leering, Jiraiya rolled the scroll up and tied it with a bit of twine, then bit his thumb and, making more hand gestures, pressed the bleeding digit to the ground. There was a flash of light and a puff of smoke, and...a frog appeared.

Al stared.

Jiraiya spoke some uncomprehensible words to the frog and placed the scroll in its mouth. The frog hopped off, disappearing suddenly mid-hop. Jiraiya dusted off his hands, then turned back to Al, grinning. He stood, and gestured for the displaced alchemist to do the same.

* * * * *

Edward Elric awoke to find a very pretty girl in a bathing suit leaning over him. "Nnn...what—?"

The girl's expression brightened, and she said something in a language that was naggingly familiar, but...

"I'm sorry, I...don't understand," Ed said sheepishly. The girl blinked, a puzzled frown on her face. Then she smacked her forehead, muttered something, and sighed, sitting back with her hands on her (bare and very distracting) thighs.

Ed sat up, and realized a few things:

1. He was, except for the bedsheets covering him and the compress that had just fallen from his forehead, naked.

2. His head and most of his joints hurt like hell.

3. His automail had been freshly cleaned and oiled, but he could feel, through the artificial nerve connections, the sand and grit that would, if left unattended, grind the precision gears down and render them useless.

Situation number one was of most immediate concern, especially since the sight of the beautiful, scantily-clad girl beside him was causing a very ill-timed reaction. Coughing, he gathered the sheets in a loose, concealing pile over that region of his anatomy, then gestured in what he hoped to be a meaningful fashion at his bare torso.

The girl fortunately took his meaning; with a blush, she disappeared from the room. She returned a moment later with some sort of loose, belted robe, which she laid on the bed. Bowing, she retreated from the room to give him some privacy.

Ed stood and wrapped the robe around himself, cinching it tightly; he looked around and could spot none of his clothing. As he was finishing his cursory examination of the small room, the pretty girl returned; she had changed from her bathing suit into a pair of green silk pants and a sleeveless pink silk top. She smiled at him; he smiled back.

With a loud groan, he stretched; he winced at a sudden sharp "pain" from his automail arm. With a frown, he examined the mechanical limb, gingerly stretching and flexing each joint. He grimaced; there was definitely sand in the gears. "Dammit," he muttered. "And no Winry to fix it..."

The girl caught his attention and motioned to his arm, then opened a different door from the one she'd gone through earlier; this door led outside. She leaned out, gathered up a handful of sand, then stepped back inside. She gestured at his arm, then let the sand trickle through her fingers onto the floor, then tilted her head quizzically.

Ed nodded. "Yeah, there's sand in the gears."

The girl nodded and went over to the corner, where she began rummaging through a bulky hiking pack. After a moment, she withdrew a small leather case and headed over to a little table in the corner which had two simple wooden chairs next to it. Ed walked over and sat down across from her. She opened the little case and Ed saw it was a tool kit full of small, slim needles, tiny brushes, precision files, screwdrivers, and other things he had occasionally seen in Winry's workshop or portable kit.

Was this girl an automail mechanic? He seriously hoped so...but then again, if she was, wouldn't she have already cleaned the sand out when she oiled his automail?

Sure enough, she passed the kit across to him and sat back. With a nod of thanks, Ed selected the most slender needle and began probing the crevices between the metal plates of his arm.

This was going to take a while...

* * * * *

Tenten watched, fascinated, as the young man cleaned the sand out of the gears of his artificial limbs. He would occasionally mutter something that was probably a swear word in whatever language he spoke.

The kunoichi sighed inwardly. This whole situation would be so much better if they could just TALK!

A sudden blue flash drew her attention, and she stared as half the metal plates on the boy's arm peeled away, like a banana. With a grin, he dug a brush into the deeper gear work and extracted a prodigious amount of wet sand. Then, he clapped his palms together; with another blue flash, the plates of his arm sealed back together into its original shape, showing no signs of warping or damage.

Tenten stared. *What the hell was THAT?*

A moment later, he repeated this performance on his mechanical leg. Cleaning the sand from the leg took far less time than cleaning it from the arm; once he was finished, he stood gingerly, testing and flexing the delicate joints. With a satisfied nod, he returned the tools to the kit, and passed it back to her. As he did so, his stomach rumbled.

With a giggle, Tenten motioned for him to sit back down, and started preparing a small meal.

Return to top

Title:The Goddess of Gryffindor
Series:Aa! Megami-sama!
Harry Potter
Genre:Crossover, Slice of Life, Comedy
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

Belldandy sends Skuld to Hogwarts.

Frustration, for a goddess, is rare.

Well, it's rare for one goddess in particular.

Belldandy, middle of the three Norns, Goddess of the Present, was presently...frustrated.

Astonishingly enough, it wasn't her mortal boyfriend's nervous reluctance to deepen their relationship that was the source of her present frustration. Although that was always simmering on the back burner. No, what had Belldandy at wit's end for the moment...

"Skuld. Dearest little sister. You're not even trying."

*She certainly is trying. My patience...*

"Gomen ne, oneesama."

Across the room, Urd snorted derisively. "Give it up, Bell. You're never gonna squeeze any magic outta THAT brat."

THAT wasn't helping matters either.

Belldandy sighed. "Urd, you're not being fair. Skuld has it inside her. She's a goddess, after all. She just..." She sighed.

Skuld looked down, eyes watering. She hated to see Belldandy disappointed—particularly if it was with her. "Gomen nasai..."

"The problem," Belldandy suddenly announced, "is your fascination with all those mecha and gadgets." She paused for a moment, tapping her bottom lip with one slender finger. "Yes...we need to get you away from technology, Skuld."

Skuld gasped. "B-but...oneesama...!"

"She's right, kiddo," Urd commented. "You get bored with magic lessons because all you want to do is play with your little toys."

"Oneesan," Belldandy began, "Is that mortal school in the Celtic lands still there?"

Urd blinked. "Hog's Warthe? The school Godric Gryffindor and his friends started?"

"Yes, that's right."

The tanned goddess frowned. "I'd have to check, but I'm fairly sure it is. The mortals had such powers in those days..." She trailed off, smiling. "Sad to see it all disappeared."

"Yes, in favor of science and technology," Belldandy agreed. "The magic left the mortals' lives. But if some of that magic is still around..."

Urd grinned. "You're a genius, Bell."

Skuld looked between her sisters, brow furrowed in confusion. "What are you two...?"

"How would you like to go to school with mortals your own age, Skuld-chan?" Belldandy asked.

"School?!" Skuld made a face. "But I already know Japanese and English and math and—"

"Not that kind of school," Belldandy cut across her. "A different kind of school." Her eyes twinkled. "A school that teaches magic."

Skuld's eyes widened.

* * * * *

Albus Dumbledore was a man who, after one hundred and fifty years of life, did not surprise easily.

"I'm sorry. I'm not entirely sure I heard correctly."

The young women seated across from him had rather successfully shocked the elderly wizard.

"You did indeed hear correctly, honored elder," the fair-skinned, sandy-haired young woman said. All around the office, the paintings of the previous Headmasters, normally feigning slumber in the presence of visitors, were eyeing this woman—as well as her companion—very curiously. Fawkes was perched on her hand, receiving absent but affectionate strokes. He was also eyeing her companion rather distastefully.

The other woman had deeply tanned skin, sultry eyes, and long, luxuriant platinum hair. Both women bore distinctive facial markings—markings which identified them as creatures Dumbledore had not been certain existed, but whom had been readily identified by several of the portraits in the room. Two of them had even known the women by name, and one had blushed rather heavily at the greeting of the darker-skinned woman.

Dumbledore steepled his long, thin fingers. "The two of you are, as my esteemed colleagues and forebears confirm, goddesses. Of the Norse pantheon, no less, and the goddesses of the Past and Present. And you have a sister, a third goddess, the goddess of the Future, whom none in this room have ever met. And you wish..."

"To have our younger sister come here, to Hog's Warthe, to learn magic."

Dumbledore's eyes twinkled. "The school has not gone by that name in over four hundred years," he said pleasantly. "It is currently known simply as Hogwarts. As to your request..." He frowned. "I am afraid to admit I am at a loss as to why a goddess would need to be instructed in magic by mortals."

The two goddesses glanced at one another hesitantly, as though in communion about what to say. Finally, the fairer goddess, Belldandy, spoke. "Our sister, Skuld, has embraced the ways of the modern world. Her passion lies in science and technology—the devices of progress, and away from tradition and the ways of old."

Dumbledore nodded suddenly. "Ah. I understand now. You cannot remove her from her more modern methods of madness, be it in Heaven or here on Earth, so you wish to further her education in the one place where no technology will function."

The goddesses blinked. "Actually, we weren't even aware of that," Belldandy admitted. "I'm afraid neither of us have been around these parts in a very long time. We just thought a more isolated environment would be good for Skuld."

"But if this place really turns off all that crap she plays with, so much the better," Urd said with a smirk.

Dumbledore smiled, his eyes twinkling. "Indeed. Very is rather out of the ordinary, but under the circumstances...I believe an exception can be made."

Belldandy rose and bowed deeply. "I thank you, honored elder."

The Headmaster stood and returned her bow. "No thanks are necessary, blessed Goddess. I am only pleased to be at your service."

Return to top

Title:Hamyoujo (or: Girl, Interspecied)
Genre:Slice of Life, Silly
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

Laura turns into a hamster and goes on an adventure with Hamtaro and friends.

Laura slumped exhaustedly into the chair at her desk, flipping open her treasured diary to the next blank page. "I sure am tired, Hamtaro," she said. "I had so much to do today...and all that homework!" Yawning, she wrote down the day's events. "But still, it was a pretty good day."

*Yeah,* Hamtaro thought to himself. *We found a whole bag of sunflower seeds someone just dropped in the grass, and then we all did watercolor drawings of our owners! Well, except for Boss and Snoozer, anyway.* "Kushikushikushi," he said aloud as he scrubbed his face with his paws.

The fifth-grader giggled and leaned down to look her hamster friend in the eyes. "Yeah, it was a pretty good day, Hamtaro. And you know what? I bet tomorrow'll be even better!"

Laura put her pet back in his carrier, then turned off the lights and crawled into bed. As she snuggled into the blankets to get comfortable, she gazed across the darkened room at the cage and its small occupant. "Mm, I wonder what it's like to be a hamster," she murmured sleepily. "Probably pretty boring...not much to do but eat, sleep, run on the exercise wheel, shred newspaper..." A yawn interrupted her musings. "Must be nice not to have anything to worry about, though," she said drowzily as she began to drift off to sleep.

"Might be nice to be a hamster..."

* * * * *

The morning sun shone in through the bedroom window, rousing Hamtaro from his slumber. Rubbing at his eyes, he padded away from his bedding, pressing up against the front of his personal ham-home. "Ahh, morning! Time for a new day full of fun! ...heke?"

Something was amiss.

It took him a moment to realize what it was; Laura wasn't in her bed. That was odd; usually he was awake before she was. The alarm hadn't gone off yet, and Laura's mom hadn't come in either. "That's odd..."

Deciding not to worry too much about it until after breakfast, Hamtaro grabbed a sunflower seed and began munching. He'd just finished his breakfast when the alarm went off.

A moment later, the voice of Laura's mother called from the hallway. "Laura! Time to get up, sweetie! It's time to get ready for school!" Her head poked in the door, and she blinked. "Laura?"

The covers lay flat enough against the bed to convey the message that there couldn't be anyone underneath them. "Hmm, that's funny. Did she get up early? Maybe she already left?" Her voice trailed off as she headed back down the hall.

She didn't notice the bedsheets shifting slightly as something moved underneath them. Hamtaro did, however; the golden hamster raised his nose to the air. "Hif-hif...hif..." His whiskers twitched, and his eyes widened. "I smell a ham-ham!"

Quickly, he pushed open the carrier door and climbed out, scampering across the floor and over to the bed.

* * * * *

The air was warm and heavy as she woke up; the kind of thick, stifling warmth that comes with pulling the blankets up over your head. Yawning, she moved to push the covers off and get out of bed.

The heavy warmth continued to press on her. She blinked. Wriggling around a bit, she discovered she wasn't confined like she should have been if she was covered in blankets. In fact, she could move around fairly freely. She just had a pile of bedcovers on top of her.

Something was not adding up here.

Laura wriggled a bit more and pushed her way through one layer of cover. Her senses told her it was thin flannel, with a familiar smell...her favorite pajamas, she realized a moment later.

This caused her to stop short. *Pajamas? Familiar smell? Wait...what...?*

Panic setting in, she began to scramble more frantically toward the thin slivers of light that could be seen now among the soft, comfortable warmth surrounding her. As she approached, she began to hear a faint sound from somewhere above: "Diggi-duggi, diggi-duggi..."

"Hello? Is anyone there?" she called out. Her voice sounded a bit odd, but she couldn't tell why for the life of her.

The narrow points of light widened suddenly, revealing her pillows, and a familiar furry head poked into the light. "Hamha!"

Laura blinked. "Hamtaro?!"

The golden hamster hopped down from the pillow, sliding across the sheets. " I know you? I don't think I've ever seen you before. Whatcha doin' in Laura's bed?"

"Hamtaro, you can talk?!"

"Well yeah, duh," he replied, tilting his head and sniffing at her. "You sure you're okay there? I don't mean to be rude, but you seem a little weird."

Laura edged backward away from him, eyes widening. "I...this must be some kind of crazy dream...this is just a dream..."

Hamtaro looked at her with concern. "Are you alright? I'm sorry, I didn't mean to be mean to you. I'm sorry I said you're weird. Hey, are you hungry? I've got lots of sunflower seeds!"

"Sunflower seeds...?"

"Yeah, come on out, they're over by my carrier. Then you can tell me how you got in Laura's bed. What's your name, by the way? Mine's Hamtaro...wait, you already know that." He blinked. "How did you know that anyway?"

"Hamtaro..." Laura said, fear edging into her voice. "Don't you know me? It's's Laura..."

The golden hamster froze, and looked back. "HEKE?! What did you say?!"

"I'm...Laura...oh Hamtaro, I don't think I like this dream. What's wrong, why don't you recognize me?"

The golden hamster crept closer, sniffing at her curiously. "Hif-hif...hif-hif..." His eyes widened. "ATATA!"

"What? What is it?"

"You..." Hamtaro paused. "You do smell like...but you were in her pajamas, so...but..." He sniffed again. "No, you definitely smell like Laura! Or rather...what Laura would smell like if she were..."

"What? If I were what, Hamtaro?"

"A hamster."

* * * * *

"Dear, have you seen Laura this morning?"

"No, I haven't...shouldn't she still be in her room?"

"She isn't...I checked on her, and she wasn't there. But I can't find her anywhere."

"That's odd. Do you think maybe she got up early and went to school for something?"

"Hmm. It might be, but...oh, I hope nothing bad has happened to her."

"I'm sure she'll be fine, dear. She can take care of herself pretty well."

* * * * *

"This is impossible, this isn't happening, this is some kind of dream, I just need to wake up...yeah...wake up, Laura..."

The reflection in the mirror on her desk wasn't doing much to reassure her, however. Two hamsters stood side-by-side in the mirror; the familiar golden hamster that was Hamtaro, and a new, brown female hamster with cream-colored bands above her paws and halfway down her belly. Laura tilted her head, the hamster tilted her head. Laura twitched her nose, the hamster twitched her nose. She drooped, eyes moistening. "I'm scared..."

Hamtaro patted her comfortingly on the back. "It's okay. Being a ham-ham isn't so bad."

"'d this happen? Wait, it's a dream, it doesn't matter how—"

"Laura..." Hamtaro shook his head. "I don't think this is a dream. I'm wide awake, and so are you."

"It HAS to be a dream!" Laura protested, waving her paws frantically. "I'm a girl, not a hamster! Hamsters can't talk! Girls can't change into hamsters!"

"Well, you've got me on that last one, but...hamsters can talk, Laura. We always have. It's just that humans usually don't understand us."

"Really?" Laura asked.


"Wow, I didn't know..." The brown hamster cocked her head. "Wait. If this isn't a dream...then what are you doing out of your carrier?"

Hamtaro laughed nervously. "Heheheh..." He began scrubbing his face with his paws. "Kushikushikushi..."


"Ah...well, you's kinda like..." The golden hamster coughed. "I kinda get out all the time. It's not that hard, any ham-ham can do it."

"Really?" Laura blinked. "Then..." She frowned. "I'm confused."

"What about?" Hamtaro asked.

"You mean you can get out of the carrier anytime you want?"


"Can you get out of the house too?"

"Yep!" Hamtaro said, smiling.

"Wow. Then..." Laura's whiskers twitched. "Well, I mean...where do you go? I've never seen you try to go anywhere..." She then blinked. "And you've never tried to run away?"

"Run away? Why would I run away?" Hamtaro blinked in confusion. "You don't ever run away from your home..."

Laura's eyes widened. "Then you..."

Hamtaro bounded off the desk suddenly and stood by the head of the bed. "Come on over here," he called.

Eyeing the edge of the desk and the floor below uncertainly, the brown hamster carefully made her way down. "Okay..."

Hamtaro smiled. "You wanna know where I go when I get out, right?"

"Yeah...what does a hamster do all day if he can go anywhere he wants?"

"Well, you go to school and see your friends, and I go to see all my friends! And then we both come home at the end of the day!"

"Your friends?" Laura asked curiously.

"Yep! Wanna meet 'em?"


"Well then, let's go!"

* * * * *

Two hamsters bounced off the nose of the slumbering dog near the drainpipe. "Mornin' Brandy," Hamtaro called.

The family dog flicked an ear, opened an eye, and yawned. His gaze lingered on the brown hamster for a moment, his nose twitching furiously. He then huffed and went right back to sleep.

Laura looked back at the pipe they'd just slid down. "That was kinda fun, Hamtaro. But...isn't it a bit dangerous?"

"Naah," the golden hamster replied. "Come on, let's hurry!" He began scampering away.

Laura struggled to catch up with him. "Wait up, I'm not used to running like this!" As Hamtaro slowed, she matched pace with him. "So where are we going?"

"To the Ham-Ham Clubhouse!" Hamtaro said cheerfully.

"A clubhouse? For hamsters?"

"Yep! And there should already be a lot of ham-hams there if school's started already."

Laura slowed, drooping. "Oh Mom and Dad, I bet they're worried..."

Hamtaro stopped and moved to comfort her. "Look Laura...whatever happened to you, you can't do anything about it. So you might as well just do what you can do and not worry about everything else. Okay?"

The brown hamster looked at her pet, eyes shining. "You're right, Hamtaro!" She drew herself up, determination showing on her face. "I wanted to know what it's like to be a hamster, so now I'm gonna find out! And whatever else happens, well, it just happens."

"That's the spirit! Now...race ya!"

"Ack! Wait up!"

* * * * *

"Hey Kana! Have you seen Laura this morning?"

"No...I haven't. I wonder if she's sick or something?"

"I hope not. But she probably is."

"Mmm. I'll stop by her place after school and see what's up."

Return to top

Genre:Drama, Tragedy, Dark
Content Rating:18+ (Mature content)
Updated:December 11, 2012

Ash, Brock, and Dawn find a creature which isn't quite human, and yet not quite a Pokemon...

"Well, here we are. Eterna Forest."

Three youths—two boys and a girl—as well as their assorted Pokemon walked into the well-shaded, densely packed forest which marked the path between Floaroma Town and Eterna City.

"Brings back memories, huh Ash?"

"Yep. Viridian Forest, Petalburg Forest...we sure have seen a lot of forests."

"Bug type Pokemon live in forests, right?" the girl asked.

"That's right, Dawn. Of course, you'll find a few other kinds of Pokemon here too. You never really know what you're gonna—"

Ash was interrupted by something crashing through the undergrowth less than three meters in front of them.

It was a girl, roughly the same age as Dawn; she was naked, filthy, disheveled, and had numerous bruises and scrapes. Thick, dark finger-shaped bruises stood out lividly on her small breasts, and viscous fluids had congealed on her thighs and groin. There was a wild, terrified, glassy look in her eyes; she saw them and froze solid.

"What the—?" Brock exclaimed.

Dawn's eyes widened. "A girl? She looks...really hurt."

Ash frowned. "A little more than hurt," he said, with uncharacteristic maturity and wisdom. "But somethin' doesn't seem right here..."

"You mean besides the fact that there's a girl right in front of us who's obviously just been raped?" Brock hissed, jaw clenched tightly in anger.

"Look more closely," Ash said quietly.

Dawn shot him a venomous glare. "You're not some kind of sick freak all of a sudden, are you?"

"NO!" Ash snapped. "Look...she's not...look at her face. And her...well...fur."

Ash was right; on second glance, a lot of the alleged 'filth' covering the girl was in fact a fine coat of matted fur, largely light brown with areas of a fine cream color. While her body was unquestionably human, and she had normal human hands and feet instead of paws or claws, thick tufts of creamy fur covered her wrists. Her nose, only slightly pinker than the skin of her face, was more of a button shape than normal, and was twitching madly.

Lastly, what could have been taken at first to be long hair was, at a second glance, a pair of broad, fluffy ears that hung to the ground.

The girl, noticing their scrutiny, shrank away from them, covering herself with her hands and curling up into a frightened, shivering ball. Her wide, glassy eyes looked them over, and in a quiet, nervous voice, she whimpered, "P-please...d-don't...hurt me...lop."

Dawn looked utterly horrified. " this...a Pokemon...?"

"What kind of sick bastard a Pokemon...?" Brock wondered, anger and revulsion surging in his hard, gravelly voice.

"I don't think..." Ash began slowly. He paused, frowning pensively. "Something is off here." He pulled out his Pokedex. "She looks like a Lopunny, but..." He pressed the activation switch on his Pokedex. It hummed for a moment, before making a loud sound it had never made before.

[Error: Species unidentifiable.]

"That's weird," Brock commented, tearing his eyes away from the not-girl, not-Pokemon wretch. "Isn't it supposed to say 'Pokemon unknown, there is no data?'

"Yeah, it is," Ash replied, confused. "I've never gotten this message before..."

Pikachu, meanwhile, had crept slowly toward the terrified creature. "Pi pika?" he asked.

"Y-yes...lop, punny."

Pikachu turned back to face his trainer. "Pikapi! Pi pika, chu."

Ash turned partially to face Dawn, not taking his eyes off the rabbit-girl. "Hey. You have some extra clothes in your bag, right?"

Dawn blinked, then nodded. "Right." She walked slowly toward the girl on the ground, kneeling in front of her. Her own eyes were still wide with confusion and horror as she dug a pair of panties, bicycle shorts, and a T-shirt out of her pack. She laid them in front of the girl. "For you," she said.

The strange girl stared at the garments in confusion, then picked them up one by one and began sniffing at them.

Dawn's face colored. "Um. You put these..." She turned to face the two boys. "Could you two not look at us for just a minute?"

Ash and Brock blushed. "Right, sorry," the older boy said. They turned to examine the brush the strange girl had emerged from.

Once certain they weren't looking and nobody else was coming along the path, Dawn demonstrated to the frightened creature how to wear the clothes.

A few minutes later, she called for the boys to return. The girl, or whatever she was, now had on simple but concealing enough clothing, and was standing up, examining herself. She still looked afraid, and was still dirty and injured, but she seemed to have accepted that the three young people not going to harm her. ""

Ash frowned. "Do you have a name?"


"I'm Ash," the Pokemon trainer said, touching his hand to his chest. "This is Brock, and the girl next to you is Dawn."


"Pika, pikachu pi."


Brock frowned, pulling out his own Pokedex. He used the search function, and after a minute, rubbed his chin thoughtfully. "This is strange."

"What is?" Dawn asked.

Brock moved to show them the screen of his Pokedex, which displayed a rabbit-like creature with a vaguely humanoid, and not so vaguely feminine, shape to its body. "That's a Lopunny," he mused. He knelt and showed it to the abused girl. "You look a little like a Lopunny, and you sound like one,'re not, are you? This isn't you, is it?"

The girl blinked at the screen, frowning as her nose twitched. "Not...Lop..." Her eyes widened suddenly. "Lop! Punny! Mama, lop!"

"Mama?" Ash and Dawn echoed.

Brock's mouth flattened into a hard, grim line. "I think I'm beginning to get the picture here. And I don't like it at all."

Dawn frowned. "First thing's first, we need to get this girl some help. We need to get her to a doctor."

"Or a Pokemon Center," Ash replied.

"I don't know if Nurse Joy's ever seen anything like this," Dawn replied.

"I know I haven't," Ash said, shaking his head.

Pikachu began chattering animatedly with the girl. She frowned, her ears and nose twitching, but finally she nodded. Pikachu then turned to report to Ash.

Ash nodded. "Right, it's decided. We'll take you to see Nurse Joy at the Pokemon Center, and then we can try to figure out what's going on here."

* * * * *

Nurse Joy stared, wide-eyed, at the pitiful creature the three trainers had led into the Center. Thankfully, it was a slow day; nobody else but her was present. " the world...?"

"Nurse Joy," Brock said; the others were surprised at his utter lack of distracted goofiness. "This...girl...or whatever...really needs your help."

"Um..." Joy blinked. "This is a Pokemon Center, not a hospital..."

"Actually, you should call the hospital and ask if a human doctor can come right away," Brock said thoughtfully. "If what I think's happened is what happened..."

"Lop, what's going on, punny? Dawn, lop? Ash, lop? Pikachu, punny?"

Joy's eyes widened to the size of tea saucers. "She's a Pokemon?"

"Lop? Am I...a Pokemon...punny?"

"We can't say for sure what she is," Brock said. "But we do know she's been abused. Sexually."

The nurse looked sick. "Oh my God..."

"Please, help us, Nurse Joy," Dawn pleaded.

"Of...of course..."

* * * * *

The doctor completed his examination; it had been difficult, as the bunny-girl frequently withdrew from him, shuddering and whimpering, and had to be reassured by Dawn and Pikachu that everything was okay. He shook his head, running a hand through his salt-and-pepper hair. "Well, kids, looks like you found one for the record books here," he said.

"What do you mean?" Dawn asked.

Brock looked the doctor in the eyes, his face hard. "She's a hybrid, isn't she? Half-human, half-Lopunny."

"Yes," the doctor replied, nodding. "I'm amazed you picked up on that."

"I'm in training to be a breeder," Brock said. "And from what happened to this poor thing, wasn't hard to figure out."

"I still don't get it," Dawn admitted with a shake of her head.

"I think I do," Ash said, grimacing. "But I'm usually wrong about stuff...tell us, Brock."

The tanned breeder sat down heavily. "Someone raped a Lopunny," he said bluntly. "And got it pregnant. And then this happened."

Dawn's hands flew to her mouth, her eyes wide and her face pale. "Oh GOD, that's..."

"It gets worse," the doctor said, faint anger on his stern face. "This creature was probably abused by her own father."

"Papa...lop..." the bunny-girl sniffled, wrapping her arms around herself and shivering.

Dawn ran off to the bathroom suddenly; the others could faintly hear her throwing up.

"So...what do we do now?"

Return to top

Series:Harry Potter
Genre:Drama, Slice-of-Life
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

A Muggle girl from Little Whinging takes interest in Harry.

I watch him. He doesn't know it, but I watch him. He always looks so lonely—no, that's not quite right. He always looks so alone. It's hard to say. He never seems to react to anything, not outright anyway. It's more of a dullness, as if he's a patch of shadow in a corner that never quite gets touched by the sun no matter what time of day it is.

It's not his appearance that gives this impression, although he certainly looks miserable and downtrodden enough. Battered, taped glasses, unkempt hair, a scrawny, underfed frame, and baggy, patched clothes. Mum and Dad have a word for it: "waif". I suppose it fits; every inch of him screams it. Except for his eyes. There's something in those eyes...but it's so hard to see through that shadow over him.

I don't get how he can be so pitiful, really. His family isn't bad-off at all; one look at his great fat slob of a cousin is enough proof of that. Dudley Dursley wears nice clothes, is always neatly-groomed (well, as neatly-groomed as a boy that fat and sloppy can be), and always has the newest and most expensive toys for the teachers to confiscate during class.

But Harry...

His clothes are so large on him, I suspect they used to belong to Dudley before he outgrew them. He needs new glasses desperately, but every few days he can be seen sellotaping the bridge of his old, battered pair. It's a miracle the lenses never break. He never seems to have any toys at all, and I've never seen him in the possession of anything that looked remotely new, save for the occasional pencil—and even then, it's usually borrowed or bought off a classmate.

Mates...that's another thing. Harry never seems to have any. Dudley runs around with those other rude, thuggish boys, and everyone simpers to them for fear of being beaten up or robbed, or both. Nobody ever wants to be seen with Harry Potter. Mostly, I believe, this is due to the aforementioned beating up and robbing done by Dudley and his gang—it's well known that being seen in the company of Harry Potter makes you a target for bullying—but there's also the fact that Harry himself has a reputation, though I honestly don't understand how it came about.

People call him weird, strange, freakish. Rude nicknames for him abound. Scary Harry. Swotty Potty. It's really annoying hearing people pick on him for no good reason. Nobody even knows him well enough to say things like that about him; nobody bothers talking to him.

...I never bother talking to him.

I feel really bad about that. Thing is, I just don't know how to go about it. And, bad as it sounds, I don't much like being teased and bullied either, and I know I will be if...

That sounds really shallow of me, doesn't it?

Right, after school, then.

* * * * *

So much for that. Just as I was approaching, those hooligans started chasing him round the school grounds. Last I heard, they were shouting and hollering about him having gotten away.

Good for him.

* * * * *

"Dad?" I began at dinner.

"Yeah, Jenny?"

I hesitated. "I was you know anything at all about the Potter boy? You know, the one who lives with the Dursleys over on Privet Drive?" We live on Magnolia Crescent. I've seen them leave Harry with the old bat with the horde of cats a few times.

My parents went quiet and looked at one another. Mum isn't much for gossip, but Dad knows everything there is to know about most of the neighbours. It's not that he's nosy; he's a private investigator by trade, and unofficial peacekeeper for the neighbourhood. Dad pushed a bit of roast about on his plate, then sighed. "Not much," he admitted. "His parents died when he was a year old. Car crash. His mum was Petunia Dursley's sister, and there were no other relatives, so he ended up with them." He paused. "They say he's a bit funny in the head. You know that scar he has?" I nodded. "He got that in the accident when he was just a baby. Had it near all his life. They say he was...damaged. Left him a bit dull and disturbed."

I frowned. That would explain the almost perpetual deadness in his eyes, if he was mentally abnormal. However, something about that didn't seem right. "If he's retarded or something, why's he in regular primary school, then?" I asked.

Dad shrugged. "Couldn't say." He peered at me. "Why the sudden interest in that boy?"

I flushed and ducked my head to stare at my plate. "It's...I just feel sorry for him. He doesn't have any friends, and everyone's always picking on him."

Dad sighed. "Poor boy. You just be careful though, alright? I'm not saying he's as dangerous as the Dursleys claim he is, but..." He trailed off significantly. I nodded, and the discussion ended.

Return to top

Kingdom Hearts
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 17, 2012

Sora needs to lock the Keyhole in Naruto World, but it's in a somewhat...inaccessible place...

It was perhaps the strangest thing any of the Leaf jounin present could remember ever seeing.

And given recent history, that was saying a lot.

"Get back here!" the boy with spiky brown hair and deep blue eyes cried. "I need to lock the Keyhole!"

"My ass you do!" the black-haired boy running from him called over his shoulder.


"Oi oi," groused the leader of the pack of blonde, whisker-faced, orange-clad ninja running just behind the brown-haired boy, "Sasuke-bastard already has enough sticks crammed up his ass without you putting THAT in there, too!"

THAT, as it was, was a giant key with a heart-shaped handguard around a swordlike hilt, with a charm dangling from a silver chain at the back which reminded many present of the hairstyle of one of the onlookers.

Said onlooker tapped the pink-haired girl standing beside her on the shoulder. "Anou, Sakura...that weird kid with the big goofy shoes wants to stick that big key up your teammate'" She flushed.

"...." Sakura replied.

"Shouldn't you be, I dunno, helping stop him?"

"...don't bother me right now, please. My mind is in a very weird place."

"Kakashi, shouldn't you be helping your student?"

"Well, if that kid's right, the only way to stop those weird black shadow things—" here, Hatake Kakashi paused to throw a kunai which speared two shadow creatures through the heart-shaped, crossed-out marks on their chests— "from popping up all over the place annoying the hell out of everybody, is to stick that key thingie up Sasuke's butt."

"Then shouldn't you be helping get this over with? I mean, you're Konoha's master of sticking things up people's butts..."

"Why, Kurenai-chan, are you coming on to me?"


"Why did I agree to take this job again, Shizune?"

"Because you were getting bored, Tsunade-sama?"


"Please, come back to your office and sign these papers..."

"Aw, you're no fun."

"My idea of fun isn't watching a thirteen-year-old boy having a giant key shoved up his rear end."

"Then I haven't trained you nearly well enough."


After a half hour of a very circular chase, the blonde ninja grumbled in irritation. "Here, give me that!" he cried, snatching the Keyblade from Sora. "Oi, Sasuke!"


Sasuke turned around. "Got him, NaruWHATTHEHELLAREYOUDOINGDOBE?!"

Seven of Naruto's kagebunshin dogpiled Sasuke, holding him down and ripping his white shorts off. The real Naruto grinned, smiled cheekily to all the observers, and...


"Oh my."


"I can't believe it went IN that far."

"Um...that's not exactly how it's supposed to work..."


"I. AM. GOING. TO. KILL YOU!!!! Ow. Ow. Ow. Ow. I need some help here."

"Well, I'm glad that's over. Now we can get some WORK done around here."

"...not now, Shizune. My mind is in a very happy place."

"...and you call Jiraiya-sama a pervert?"

An hour later...

"Thanks for your help, Naruto," Sora said as he continued to vigorously polish the Keyblade with a rough, wet cloth.

Naruto folded his arms behind his head. "Hey, no problem. Glad I could help out."

"....yyyyeah. Well, we'll be going now. There's lots more Keyholes to lock if we want to stop the Heartless for good."

"Good luck!"


"Anou...Bobobo? I know you're the master of the Fist of the Nose Hair and all, but...don't you think you should see a doctor about this cold? I mean, those things coming out of your nose don't look especially healthy..."

Return to top

Title:Kodomo Sentai Chibiranger
Series:Detective Conan
Super Sentai
Genre:Crossover, Sentai, Comedy
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

The Shounen Tanteidan become Rangers.

Five small bodies piled out of the beat-up old yellow Beetle, three of them laughing and running, the other two moving at a more sedate pace. A moment later, an elderly man emerged from the driver's seat with the loud groaning of those whose joints have long since refused to cooperate.

"You're getting old, Hakase," the shortest boy, the one with tousled brown hair and large eyeglasses, commented with a smirk.

"It'll happen to you too one day, Shinichi," the old man replied, snorting.

"Not soon enough," the boy grumbled. The reddish-brown haired girl beside him snickered.

The young boy sighed, hands behind his head, and looked up at the sky. "A five-day camping excursion to Okayama...I have to admit, this was a good idea. Country air is so nice..."

"Mm," the girl beside him agreed. "Even I'm a little excited about this trip."

"Oh? That's unusual coming from you, Haibara."

The girl shrugged. "So, where are we—"

The sky suddenly flared white, and a sonic boom shook the ground. "What the hell?!" the boy cried, staring around in alarm.

The three other children in the group rushed back over the car. "Hakase! Conan-kun! Something big just crashed in the woods!"

As one, the party turned to stare toward the nearby woods at the base of a large mountain. Thick plumes of black smoke billowed above the treeline, as the horizon began to glow dark orange-red. "Chikushou!" Edogawa Conan hissed. "Was that a meteor?"

"It didn't look like a meteor," the tall, thin-faced boy—Tsuburaya Mitsuhiko—replied. "It wasn't on fire when it passed over us, but it was...white. Really white. And it looked like metal."

Suddenly, the ground shook again as another sonic boom ripped through the air, followed by a loud, leaden *whump* from nearby. A thick cloud of dust and earth boiled into the air from somewhere near the burning forest. Without hesitation, Conan headed in that direction, the others quickly following. "M-matte!" Agasa called, but the aged inventor's cries were ignored.

The five children screeched to a halt at the edge of a broad, scorched impact crater. At the very center was a metallic black sphere, almost perfectly round, roughly two meters in diameter.

"What IS it?" the only other girl in the group, Yoshida Ayumi, asked.

"It's not a meteor," Conan replied, frowning thoughtfully. "A satellite maybe...?"

Haibara Ai shook her head. "No satellites in Earth orbit look anything like that, even accounting for damage, debris, disintegration..."

"It's an alien spaceship! It's gotta be!" Kojima Genta, the largest of the five, bellowed.

"Be serious," Conan snapped. "For one thing, it's too small to be anything like that..."

"Not if they were very small aliens," Mitsuhiko commented.

Conan sighed. "Yareyare..."

"Edogawa-kun," Ai said, "It's unwise to discount the possibility that of extraterrestrial origin." At Conan's disbelieving stare, she elaborated, "It's extremely improbable that such an object would occur naturally in space, and even more improbable that it would remain perfectly intact after a landing hard enough to make this crater. Assuming this object is NOT manmade, there is no other logical explanation for it."

Conan was about to protest, but a sudden scream from Ayumi cut him off. He looked up and his eyes widened; several figures had just emerged from the burning forest and were approaching quickly. As they grew near, it became obvious to all five children that they were decidedly NOT human.

"What the hell ARE those things?" Genta yelled.

"Aliens!" Mitsuhiko replied. "They're aliens!"

A retort died on Conan's lips; the approaching figures were easily twice as tall as Genta, but had narrow trunks, limbs that seemed too slender to be of any use, and misshapen ovoid heads. Their faces weren't remotely human: round black protrusions like fish eyes protruded from the lower sides of the pulpy grey cheeks, while two short, thick grey whiskers twitched between them. Above those was a gaping, toothless maw, where the forehead of a human would be. In all, there were two dozen of the creatures, gibbering in a strange, unearthly language.

"We need to leave. Now," Conan ordered. The group began to back away from the object they had been examining, but a sudden yelp from Mitsuhiko alerted them to the fact that they'd been outflanked and surrounded. The creatures had formed a ring around the crater, and were slowly circling, cutting off any possible chance of escape through a break in ranks. Growling, Conan readied the stun-dart gun in his wristwatch, knowing even as he did so that it would be of no real use in this situation...

Kodomo-tachi, a voice echoed in his mind. The confused expressions on the faces of the others confirmed that they'd heard it as well. "What—who—?" Genta wondered aloud.

A faint silver light began to pulse around them, seemingly keeping the grey-skinned creatures at bay. Kodomo-tachi, the voice repeated. Use the power of youth and friendship...

"What IS that?" Ayumi asked.

"Look...the alien ship..." Mitsuhiko breathed.

The others turned; the metal sphere in the crater was humming softly, and several lights had begun to flicker across its surface. Without warning, five beams of white light erupted from the object, each arcing high into the air before slamming downward...straight into the golden plastic Detective Boys badges the five children wore.

"AHHH! What's happening?" Ayumi screamed. Genta took his badge off and threw it at the ground. Ai looked contemplative. Conan took his off and examined it.

It had...changed.

The plastic face of the badge still bore the same logo, but seemed a bit...shinier, more polished. The back, however, which should have contained a simple radio transceiver assembly...


It now bore two small rows of black buttons, labelled in Roman letters:


As well as a more sophisticated microphone and speaker assembly and some type of LCD panel. The original fastening pin was also gone; it had been replaced by a narrow strip of what looked like metallic velcro. Frowning, Conan attempted to fasten it to his shirt, and was surprised when it attached easily and held firm. Beside him, Ai had also inspected her badge; she turned to glance at him with a raised eyebrow.

"What WAS that?" Mitsuhiko asked shakily. Around them, the grey creatures continued to gibber.

Kodomo-tachi, the strange voice echoed once again. Call on the power of youth and is the only way to defeat the enemy...

And with that, the alien object went dark and silent, and the silver light surrounding them faded away.

The five children stared nervously at the grey creatures, which were beginning to draw nearer...

"Kudou-kun," Ai hissed at Conan's shoulder, "Look at the back of your badge."

Conan did so; the LCD panel had come to life, and he blinked almost audibly at the words he saw there. "Naaaaaaani?!" He took off his glasses and rubbed them on his shirt, then rubbed at his eyes with his sleeve for good measure. He then peered at the words flashing on his badge again, reading them aloud as though to confirm their existence. "Seishun Henshin...Elementary Change?"

The badge suddenly began beeping loudly, and Conan let out a startled exclamation as something...very odd happened. A bright red light engulfed the small detective, expanding to a tall pillar of flame.

"Conan-kun!" Genta, Mitsuhiko, and Ayumi screamed. Ai backed away, eyes wide. The light began to fade...and the four stared at what was revealed.

A figure—the exact same size as Conan—stood there; clad in form-fitting red spandex with the gold Detective Boys badge affixed to the breast just left of a broad white pentagon, a narrow white belt at the waist with a red-and-gold soccer-ball emblem on the buckle, red leather boots and gloves with white and gold trim, and, most improbably, a red helmet which completely encased his head, bearing only a small, smirking silver mouthplate and an opaque black visor in the shape of a bowtie.

"C-Conan-kun...?" Ayumi asked uncertainly.

The red-clad figure looked down at himself. "Wha...what the hell?!" he cried, in what was unmistakably Edogawa Conan's voice.

"You look like a toku hero," Genta breathed. He glanced down at his own badge, lying on the ground, and quickly picked it up. He glanced at the back of it, frowned, then grinned suddenly. "Seishun Henshin! Elementary Change!"

Another pillar of light, this time green. When it subsided...

"Genta-kun too?" Ayumi asked.

"Well...this is interesting," Ai commented, though her left eye was twitching dangerously.

"Haha, this is cool!" Genta exclaimed. Clad in green spandex designed similarly to the outfit Conan now wore, the primary difference was the visor on his (distinctly bullet-shaped) helmet, which resembled an inverted rice bowl, and the emblem on his belt buckle, which looked like jade and gold chopsticks. "Mitsuhiko! You too!"

"O...okay!" the gangly boy replied hesitantly. "Um...Seishun Henshin...Elementary Change!"

Blue light enveloped the tall boy. As it faded, Mitsuhiko now wore a blue spandex costume, with a blue camera emblem on the belt buckle and a visor which resembled goggles, or perhaps the lenses of binoculars.

"Sugoi!" Ayumi cried, having gotten over her shock. "Me next! Seishun Henshin, Elementary Change!"

Pink, this time. Her belt buckle was a gold-edged pink heart, and her visor...bore the unmistakeable shape of Conan's glasses. Mitsuhiko and Genta turned to face the red-clad boy, and though their faces were not visible, he could FEEL the heat of their glares. He took a step backward, rubbing the back of his helmet nervously. Ai smirked.

The red helmet then turned to face her. "Oi, Haibara. You too."

The redhead's eyes widened. "Sorry. Pass."

"Come on, Ai-chan! It's fun!" Ayumi pleaded.

"You've gotta do it, Haibara!" Genta enthused.

"There's supposed to be five of us, Haibara-san," Mitsuhiko added. "That's how it works."

"You watch too much television," Ai retorted.

"Come on, Haibara," Conan needled. "If I have to put up with it, so do you..."

The shrunken scientist blew upward on her bangs in annoyance. "Oh, fine." She removed her badge and pressed the lower left button. "But I refuse to say the stupid words." A wash of pale purple light engulfed her, and...


"...there's not usually a purple one, is there?" Genta asked, scratching his helmeted head in confusion.

"Lavender," Ai's voice replied from within the candy-colored helmet, the force of her withering glare muted by the rounded, oblong visor—if it had been bisected by a line, it would most certainly have looked like a capsule. The emblem on her belt buckle resembled the business end of a revolver. "Can't you at least learn that much about colors?"

"Looks purple to me," the green-clad mountain of gradeschooler replied with a shrug.

"Okay, so...WHY exactly did we all just turn into rejects from a corny Sunday-morning kiddie show?" Conan wondered, crossing his arms.

"Better question," Ai replied, jerking her head to indicate the rather agitated grey creatures surrounding them. "Will these ridiculous outfits actually be of any use to get us out of this?"

Conan's cocky grin could be felt as he spoke. "I know one way to find out." He pressed in on both sides of his belt buckle; it lit up, and projected a glowing red ball into the air. "Alright! Now we're talking." Grabbing it, he leapt high into the air and somersaulted, releasing the ball in mid-flip. "FLAMING SHOOT!" he cried, kicking the ball hard toward the throng of creatures. It caught fire as his foot touched it, and rocketed straight into the chest of one creature, which screamed incoherently as it exploded in flames.

"Yooosh'!" Genta cried, grabbing his belt buckle. A pair of giant emerald green chopsticks appeared before him.

"...chopsticks? What the...?" Mitsuhiko asked.

"Watch! TORYA!" Genta grabbed the giant chopsticks and charged into the throng, lashing out with them as though they were swords. "ALL-YOU-CAN-EAT ASSAULT!" The oversized eating implements struck the marauding creatures across torsos, limbs, and heads, creating showers of smoke and sparks where they hit, sending the hapless aliens flying.

"My turn!" Mitsuhiko cried enthusiastically, reaching for his belt buckle. A blue camera appeared. "Hey, ugly! Say cheese!" He clicked the shutter, and a blinding blue flash lit the area. The two aliens caught in the flash froze solid, three-fingered hands absurdly raised as though giving the peace sign. Conan's flaming football lashed out at one, knocking it into two behind it and tackling them all to the ground; Genta drummed on the other one with his chopsticks until it fell to the ground in blackened, smoking pieces.

Ayumi made a pose as though blowing a kiss; a large pink heart shot away from her, catching a creature in the chest and sending it flying. Ai had acquired a lavender gun, with which she was precisely sniping aliens through the heads with bright purple laser beams.

Within minutes, the small army of grey creatures lay severely wounded or dead on the ground around the crater; the haze of battle hung heavy in the air. The five transformed children stood together in defensive postures, watching for any sign of activity from their fallen foes. As the smoke began to clear, Agasa staggered toward them, coughing and panting. "" he huffed. He then STARED at the disguised (yet unmistakable) forms of his young charges. "What the...? What happened...?"

"Hakase!" Genta called. "Check it out! The Shounen Tanteidan got an upgrade!"

"That's right! We're not just the Shounen Tanteidan anymore!" Mitsuhiko chimed in happily. He and Genta began making sentai hero poses. "Now we're...KODOMO SENTAI CHIBIRANGER!"

The others STARED at them.

"We're no such thing," Ai snapped, powering down in a flash of lavender light.

"That was kinda dumb, you two," Ayumi put in, a pink flare marking the dispersal of her own transformation.

" two kinda suck at picking names," Conan added, his costume disappearing in a flicker of red fire.

Genta and Mitsuhiko slumped dejectedly, dispelling their own transformations to reveal disappointed faces.

Agasa looked at the five of them with wide, curious eyes, then shook his head. "You can tell me just what happened here after we get back to the car. We're getting out of here."

"...yeah, that's probably a good idea," Conan said, glancing back at the crater and the dead alien orb.

As the six campers trooped back to Agasa's car, an unseen figure watched from concealment in the thick smoke hanging above the burning forest. "Yes...departing sounds like a fine idea. But do not think this is over. It has only yet begun...Kodomo Sentai Chibiranger."

By the time emergency response vehicles arrived, there was no evidence left of what had taken place except for the empty crater and the inexplicably burning forest.

Return to top

Series:Tenchi Muyou!
Genre:Drama, Suspense
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

Mihoshi and Kiyone are inexplicably fused into a single being.

"Looks bad out there," Sasami commented, peeking out the window as she sipped her tea.

"Mm," Katsuhito nodded. "The spring rains are often like this."

The two sat in the shrine, quietly sipping tea and watching the rain. Ryo-Ohki nibbled on a carrot nearby. A rather loud party was going on in the main house; the girl and the cabbit had come out to the shrine for some peace and quiet. Outside, rain beat down in heavy sheets, the occasional flash of lightning and rumble of thunder punctuating the rhythm of the steady rainfall.

There was a sudden flash outside which had nothing to do with lightning. Ryo-Ohki looked up. "Mya..."

"That...looked like a ship landing," Sasami noted.

Katsuhito nodded, adjusting his glasses. "Now, who would be coming down in the middle of this weather, I wonder?"

Sasami peeked out the window. "Looks like the Yagami," she said.

* * * * *

There was a faint but persistent knock at the front door, barely audible over the rain and the din of the party. "Tenchi, be a dear and get that, would you?" Ryoko said between gulps of sake.

"Really, Ryoko-san," Ayeka scoffed, "it would not kill you to move your lazy bones once in a while and do something, instead of leaving it all for others to do."

"Yeah, so? Nobody asked you anyway," Ryoko sniped, punctuating her rude retort with a long belch. Ayeka turned away with a 'hmph', pointing at the ceiling with her nose.

Meanwhile, Tenchi opened the front door...and took a step back as a shivering, dripping wet young woman collapsed into his arms. "H-hey!" he cried out. Recovering from the shock, he dragged the unconscious woman into the house. "Someone roll out a futon," he ordered. The others looked up in mild surprise.

"Who's that?" Ryoko wondered.

"I have no idea," Tenchi said. Ayeka appeared with the futon, and Tenchi laid the woman upon it. "I think maybe she's Galaxy Police, though," he commented after a moment.

She appeared to be in her early twenties, and even in her present state of unconsciousness and dishevelment, she was quite attractive. Strands of her long, seafoam-green hair were plastered to her face and neck, having escaped the topknot she wore which was held in place with a simple orange cloth. Curiously, one lock of hair which trailed down her right cheek was darker in color, and was intertwined near the temple with a curl of almost blond hair. Her lightly tanned skin was flushed slightly with fever. She wore a Galaxy Police uniform, as well as a heavy pair of sweatpants and a dark blue jacket.

"We need to get her out of those clothes and into the bath," Washuu noted. "She's already running a high fever."

"You're right," Tenchi said. "Can you girls handle it?"

Just then, the woman began coughing, and stirred slightly. Tenchi unconsciously took hold of her hand, much to the consternation of Ryoko and Ayeka. "Miss? Are you alright?" he asked softly.

The young lady's eyelids fluttered open, and she focused on Tenchi with sharp, deep blue eyes. "Ten...chi..." she said hoarsely.

Everyone blinked. " do you know my name? Who are you?" Tenchi demanded.

The woman's eyes became slightly unfocused. Her voice trembled as she replied, ", Miho...that's not right...I don't know," she finished. "I...I don't know anymore." A pitiful sob racked her frame.

A loud rumble of thunder filled the silence as Tenchi, Ryoko, Ayeka, and Washuu glanced around at one another uncertainly.

* * * * *

Tenchi, Ryoko, Ayeka, Washuu, Sasami, and Katsuhito stood around a large cylindrical tank in which the mysterious young woman floated, hooked up to sensors, intravenous nutrients, and a respirator. Much to Tenchi's relief, the girls had wrangled her into a one-piece bathing suit.

Washuu frowned and swore under her breath as she furiously typed away at two different floating keyboards simultaneously. "These readings don't make any sense whatsoever," she muttered, brow creasing.

"Any idea who she is, Washuu?" Tenchi asked.

"WHO she is?" Washuu echoed, looking up sharply. "I can't even figure out WHAT she is...based on what these readings are telling me, she's been exposed to so much concentrated crude radiation she shouldn't still be alive." Turning back to her work, she added, "As it is, her DNA looks like someone poured acid through Swiss cheese."

"That bad, huh?" Ryoko commented.

"Is it..." Tenchi began. "Is it possible that this is Kiyone? Or Mihoshi?" None of them had forgotten her earlier outburst.

Washuu shook her head. "I can't make a positive match for either case. The part of the sequence that serves as identification is..." She paused, making a face, as though her next words tasted bitter. "It's nothing I've ever seen before."

"She's waking up," Sasami noted. Everyone turned to see the girl's head move, her eyelids squeezing more tightly shut against the surrounding liquid.

"Good. Maybe now we can get some answers," Washuu said.

* * * * *

The entire group sat around the dining table a few moments later. Their mysterious visitor, dressed in borrowed clothes, sipped the tea Sasami had given her. She seemed nervous, frightened, and incredibly miserable.

"Please, calm yourself," Katsuhito said gently. "You are among friends here."

"I...I know," she said, her voice quavering. "Th-that's why I came here. I...I didn't have anywhere else to go..."

"It's alright," Tenchi said reassuringly. "Can you tell us anything about yourself? Anything at all?"

This only made her look more miserable. "N-none of you recognize me at all, do you?"

The group shook their collective heads.

"Could...could I trouble someone for a mirror?" she asked. There was a confused pause, before Washuu produced one out of thin air and handed it to her.

The young woman looked long into the mirror. As she did, the unshed tears brimming in her eyes spilled over, and after a moment, the mirror dropped from nerveless fingers, as she buried her face in her hands. "No...this can't be happening..."

"You don't look all that bad," Ryoko quipped.

The woman looked up sharply. "This...this..." A spark of anger ignited in her rich blue eyes. "This is NOT ME! It's" She broke down, all coherence lost to wracking sobs. Every so often, her cries were punctuated with a shaky, quiet "who am I?".

Everyone, even Ryoko, looked on with sympathy for the seafoom-haired girl. After a moment, Washuu frowned pensively, and called up one of her keyboards. "Hmm...let's see...mmm-hmm...this...and this...alright...hmm."

"What is it, Washuu?" Tenchi asked.

Washuu nodded solemnly. "I should have known." A holoscreen popped up in the middle of the table for everyone to see. On the screen, side by side, were images of Kiyone and Mihoshi. As Washuu tapped keys, the images began to slide together, overlapping. As they became perfectly aligned, the images began to morph and blend together, until the screen showed an image which looked almost exactly like the woman crying in their midst.

Everyone stared. Washuu turned to the young woman, who looked up at the screen with wide eyes. "That's what you are, isn't it?" the scientist asked. "You're Mihoshi...and you're also Kiyone." She received a shaky nod in reply. "I think you'd better tell us what happened to you," she said.

All eyes focused upon the miserable young woman as she took a deep breath, and began her tale.

Return to top

Title:Night Game
Series:Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Teen Titans
Genre:Crossover, Suspense, Action
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

The Teen Titans find themselves caught in the crossfire when the Foot Clan attempt to gain a foothold in their city, arousing the wrath of Slade.

The moon was waning, and the scant sliver of a crescent which was visible that night had taken refuge behind a thin bank of wispy silver clouds. Stars struggled vainly to fill the void, to bring light to the world below, but valiantly though they tried, darkness had won this night; the only illumination truly reaching the vast concrete sea came from the city itself: from flickering neon signs, from dim lights in dusty windows, from security lights searching for signs of disturbance...and of course, the most prominent source of light on any moonless night in this city, the ever-watchful glow of the tall T-shaped tower which loomed over the cityscape; distant, yet always near, a reminder that this city was protected, secure.

Still, even that vigilant light could not reveal the mass of moving shadows which ghosted from rooftop to rooftop in the quiet business district, a soundless collection of synchronized movement and precision control of the very darkness of night.

Nor did it quite unveil the second group of silent, shadowy forms waiting on a particularly tall rooftop, directly in the path of the first group.

The two waves of shadows collided, and a battle which only the night would ever know took place...

* * * * *

A number of warriors had fallen on each side. The remaining forces stopped fighting for a moment, one side catching a second wind while sizing up the enemy, the other merely waiting, unconcerned, for the battle to resume.

The clouds took leave of the moon for the moment, the pale, ghostly light dispelling some of the shadow and secrecy which shrouded the warring parties. On one side: two dozen men in form-fitting black outfits with grey tunics, boots, and gloves, faces covered by hoods with round yellow-tinted eyeshields. The other side, numbering perhaps a half dozen fewer, were not human, a fact attested to by the twisted wreckage of the few which had fallen. Rather, they were androids: built with the proportions of an average-sized man, encased head to toe in form-fitting black spandex and silver aventails, belts, boots, and gauntlets, with a red circle emblazoned in the center of a black, faceless mask with glowing white eyes.

A tall, imposing figure strode forward from the larger group. "Enough of this," he snarled in a menacing, resonant voice. This tall, broad-shouldered man wore a dark suit of armor which seemed to devour any light that dared touch it. Plates of deadly, razor-sharp spines curved outward from his shoulders, shins, and forearms, and a pair of long, slim claws adorned his left gauntlet. His helmet, with a three-pronged ornamental crest that matched the scarlet sigil upon the uniforms of his warriors, completely concealed his face, allowing only two burning red slits of eyes to glare evilly into the night.

"I quite agree," a much calmer voice stated. From amid the group of androids, another armored man appeared, his stride measured, even, unhurried. Unlike his counterpart, his build did not differ from that of his forces. Indeed, his attire was quite similar to theirs, save for the heavier armor on his upper arms and thighs, the silver sash across his torso, and his mask: the right half, flat black, featureless save for two bronze-grilled slits over the mouth area; the left, bronze with black-grilled mouth slits, and a black-rimmed eyeslit, from which he stared levelly at his adversary across the rooftop.

"Do not mock me further with these...things," the dark-armored form said, pointing his clawed hand at the androids. "You do not wish to further incur my wrath."

The other man gave the impression of raising an eyebrow. "Interesting. And what precisely do you intend to do if I...further incur your wrath?"

Suddenly, the armored man was directly in front of him, body twisted as he attempted to land an open-palm strike on the cycloptic mask. With almost negligent ease, his strike was turned aside, and a rising knee caught him in the midsection. This was followed by a roundhouse kick that sent him sprawling across the roof, where he skidded to a halt in front of his warriors, who quickly stepped aside to avoid being bowled over. He stood and glared. "You shall regret having done that," he snarled.

"This is my city," the other man replied in a casual tone of voice, hands behind his back. "You are not welcome here. I allow petty, incompetent criminals and would-be megalomaniacs to inhabit this city only because they pose no threat. They amusement. And provide a valuable resource, both in terms of contract manpower and the opportunities for intelligence-gathering they afford." He paused, his single eye narrowing. "You, on the other hand, have nothing of interest to offer me, and I refuse to allow a rival faction to operate under my nose. As they say in the movies, this town simply isn't big enough for the both of us."

"Then make no mistake, I shall remove you by force," the armored man insisted.

"Please," the black-and-bronze-clad man replied, the first trace of an emotion—amusement—entering his voice since the exchange began. "With less than two hundred loyal ninja remaining in your service, and seventeen of your Elite? I'm afraid, Saki-san, that you lack the manpower to take control of this city away from me. Especially once the Teen Titans discover your presence. It's only a matter of time before you lose another half of your forces to the Titans. Or to me."

Oroku Saki—better known in the underworld as the Shredder—growled low in his throat, clenching his fists in fury. "These so-called 'superheroes' are nonsense. A joke. My Elite are more than capable—"

"Of being bested by them, as all others have. Myself included, loathe as I am to admit it." The masked man paused. "I know everything about your organization, Saki-san. The moment I discovered your first operations in this city, I researched the Foot Clan. I know everything there is to know about you, and that is why I can say with absolute cannot hope to defeat me. Or the Titans, for that matter." He gestured expansively with his arms. "Save yourself the wasted effort, Saki-san. Return to New York. You would have a better chance of reclaiming control there, even with the gang wars and your enemies, than you ever will here, in my city."

Shredder's only response was to launch another attack. Once again, with almost contemptuous ease, his attack was turned aside, his own force redirected against him to knock him flat on his ass.

As he stood, the master of the Foot eyed his adversary, arms folded. "Perhaps direct confrontation is not the answer here. Perhaps if I were to offer not an adversary, but an ally..."

"As I said, you have nothing to offer me. I have all the disposable muscle I need at my...disposal," the masked man said with a soft chuckle.

"Disposable..." Shredder snarled. "How DARE you!"

"You should work on that temper, Saki-san. It may be the death of you some day."

Shredder pointed at the masked man with his clawed hand. "I would have your name, fool, that I may write it on your tombstone in your own blood."

"My my. That was quite an interesting threat. Very well." The masked man turned on his heel and walked calmly through the ranks of his androids. "My name is Slade. Remember it." Two steps later, he was gone, and his androids quickly followed suit, disappearing into the shadows.

"Indeed I will," Shredder growled. A second later, the rooftop was empty, and the night had grown unnaturally still.

* * * * *

" me!"

It was shortly before noon; Beast Boy, having spent the entire night before gaming with Cyborg, had retreated to his room, turned into an owl, and gone to sleep. Cyborg, not really needing sleep and being fully charged, was waxing his car. Raven had not seen any sign of Starfire all day. And Robin...

...was about as panicked as she could remember ever seeing him. She raised a slender eyebrow and lowered her book. "What is it?" she asked.

With the look of a man who had seen the heart of Hell itself, Robin replied gloomily, "She' again."

Raven twitched.

"And she's trying...gourmet cuisine."

Raven shuddered.

"Please, you gotta help me! Cover for me or something. Anything!"

Raven sighed. "Robin, it's only food. It's not the end of the—"

"Robin!" Starfire called cheerfully from the kitchen. "I have almost finished preparing today's lunch. I do hope you will enjoy it! It was a very challenging dish to prepare." She leaned into the room, a frilly pink apron covering her usual purple pleather attire, smudges of flour and sauce and things best left unidentified covering her hair and face—the apron was miraculously unscathed.

Robin swallowed. "It smells...really great, Star," he replied. "What, er, is it?"

"I am certain you will love it! It is called poodle noodle strudel!" With that, Starfire disappeared back into the kitchen.

Raven winced. "Are you sure there isn't a crime going on somewhere we should be stopping?"

"I already checked," Robin replied miserably. "The only crime happening right now is in that kitchen."


The intruder alarm suddenly sounded.

Robin looked up at the sky. "Thank you, God."

"Come on," Raven said, marking her place in the book and setting it aside. "We'd better see what's up."

* * * * *

The intruder wasn't hard to spot. He'd crashed in through a window halfway up the tower. A very cross green owl arrived at the same time as Robin and Raven, transforming into an equally grumpy Beast Boy as it landed. "Alright, whose bright idea was it to ruin my nap?" he asked.

Then he got an eyeful of the intruder.


"That about covers it," Raven said.

Standing in the middle of a pile of glass was a hulking figure covered head to toe in rust-red spandex. Easily a head taller than Cyborg, and with muscles a bodybuilder would envy, the intruder radiated strength, toughness, and menace.

He also had a pair of wobbly antennae on his cowl, and a pair of angular, tapered sunglasses.

Return to top

Title:No Such Thing
Ben 10
Genre:Crossover, Action
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 31, 2012

Ben Tennyson meets Hellboy.

A messy, satisfying splatter marked the end of another successful job.

The demon hunter stowed his weapon, gave a sigh of deep contentment, and withdrew a cigar from a pocket of his trenchcoat.

Just as he had clenched his teeth around the finest product of Cuba, a black blur entered his field of vision. "STOP RIGHT THERE!" shouted a high, nasal voice.

"Hm?" the hunter subvocalized, quirking an eyebrow.

The black blur resolved itself into a small saurian creature, mostly covered in a sleek black and white bodysuit. A round emblem graced the breast of the uniform: a raised black dial with a crest in the shape of a stylized white hourglass.

"Okay, and what the hell are you supposed to be?" the hunter asked in a gravelly voice.

The visor on the lizard's helmet slid up, revealing a blue-skinned face and narrowed yellow eyes. "I'm the guy who's gonna kick your butt back to wherever you came from!"

"Oh yeah?" The hunter fished around in his coat pockets, producing a long wooden match. He struck the match against one of the splintered, uneven stumps on his forehead, then lit his cigar, taking a deep drag before blowing out the match and tossing it into the gutter. "Izzat so?"

"And you're a litterbug on top of everything else!" the lizard continued indignantly.

With an irritated grunt and a long exhalation of smoke, the red-skinned demon slayer produced a massive hand cannon from a concealed holster, levelling its muzzle at the saurian nuisance. "So sue me."

And then, suddenly, the creature wasn't there anymore. An instant later, neither was the hunter's gun. "What the—?!"

The black blur returned, resolving into the lizard creature again. "Sheesh, this thing's heavy!" it protested, dropping the hand cannon to the sidewalk with a loud crash.

The demon hunter sighed deeply, shoulders slumped. "Okay, why'd you go and do that? 'Cause now I'm gonna hafta kick your ass."

"Just try it! I've handled bigger, tougher aliens than you!"

The hunter blinked. "Alien? What the—?" He then gave a laugh that rattled nearby windows. "There ain't no such thing as aliens!"

"Oh yeah? Then what the heck do you think I am?!" the lizard retorted.

The infamous demon stalker, believed by many to be nothing more than an urban legend, eyed the strange creature for a moment, frowning. He then took one last, long drag from his cigar before tossing it into the gutter.

"A two minute workout," Hellboy replied at length, cracking his neck loudly.

Return to top

Title:The Other Side of Death
Series:Detective Conan
Genre:Crossover, Slice of Life, Comedy
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 11, 2012

Edogawa Conan becomes a Shinigami.


Higher-order spirit beings, generally invisible to humans, who exist to facilitate the transition of human souls from the living world to the world of spirits—the world which is referred to by the Shinigami as 'Soul Society'—and to disperse sin and impurity which causes human spirits to transform into soulless, evil monsters which prey on innocent souls—creatures known as Hollows.

Strict laws govern the behavior of the Shinigami, who are considered by many to be the highest authority of the spirit domain, and others to be its most notorious scum. Punishment for violation of the laws of the Shinigami is severe. Interfering in the affairs of the Shinigami usually leads to death.

One of the more important tenets of Shinigami law is the noninvolvement of living humans in the affairs of Soul Society. Violations are severely frowned upon and carry heavy penalties. The most severe penalties are levied for the offense of imbuing a mortal with the powers of a Shinigami—an act that completely contradicts the delicate balance of the mortal and spirit planes.

And even so, occasionally, it does happen—a human being becomes involved in the affairs of the Shinigami, and is subsequently, by one circumstance or another, changed—given the power over dispensation of the deceased that rightfully belongs only to the Shinigami.

The most infamous case in recent history of a human becoming a Shinigami involves one Kurosaki Ichigo, a teenager possessed of immense spiritual power and awakened to his potential as a Shinigami by Kuchiki Rukia, a talented Shinigami who nearly died protecting the Kurosaki family from a Hollow.

This is not their story.

Rather, this is the story of another human who became a Shinigami, through a completely different set of circumstances...

* * * * *

"P-please...please go away! Leave me alone...!" Amano Michie was not having one of the best days of her short life. The seven-year-old girl had come home to find police and firemen and reporters and lots of strangers around her apartment building, and nobody could tell her where her mommy was—and wouldn't let her go home. Frantic, she'd slipped away from the policeman who was keeping her from going into the building and snuck inside to look for her mommy. She had trouble finding her home in the hazy smoke clinging to the hallways, and when she did, things were black and ugly and didn't look right, and just as it hit her that her home had been on fire and burned and...and...

Her mommy...

And then suddenly it had HURT REALLY BAD

and then it got all white

and then all black

And now she was standing at the end of the hall, by the elevators, cowering in the corner—why wouldn't the elevator come? She needed to get away...

Away from...

She'd seen it for the first time after she tried to crawl over the broken door of the apartment, after everything had started hurting really bad. It was a monster, like something out of Kamen Yaiba, only...worse. Because those monsters were never really scary, and you always knew the good guys were going to beat them.

This monster was really really REALLY SCARY, with five arms and sharp claws (it had already cut her leg twice and it hurt it hurt MOMMY) and a snakelike tail and a skull face with way too many teeth and its breath smelled rotten

And it kept coming after her and moaning and telling her it was hungry and it wanted to eat her...

"NOw, lITtlE gIrL," it cackled, foul breath rolling off it in waves as it bobbed in front of her, "lET Me dEVouR YouR sOUL..."

Michie opened her mouth to scream, but nothing came out...and the monster was laughing...and...

"Saa. You're the one."

Michie blinked and looked up. The monster also stopped where it was and started looking around. "WhO'S thEre?" it asked.

Down the hall, from the direction of her apartment, a small figure—no larger than Michie herself—calmly approached the scene. The flickering hallway lights reflected off the large lenses of the approaching form's glasses, long before he drew close enough to make out any features.

"This girl—you're responsible, right? And her mother as well?"

"ThaT'S rIGht," the monster cackled, turning to fully face the newcomer. He really WAS just a little boy—about Michie's own age—with dark brown, messy hair, wearing a black kimono that reminded the girl of the clothes her daddy wore the day her grandmother went away to be with her ancestors—a full two years before Michie herself understood what that really meant.

Except Daddy hadn't worn a sword on his obi—which this boy did, although it was a short, child-sized sword, and it couldn't really be a real sword, right?

Michie shook her head. Why was some strange boy in a black kimono playing samurai in her apartment building while she was trying not to get eaten by a monster? And what was that about her mommy?

The monster tilted its head, observing the boy. It chuckled—not a nice sound. "i'M SUrpRIsEd You cAN See Me, boY. yOU sMeLL lIkE a hUMaN tO mE."

The boy smirked. "'re right. I'm a living human. But..." And here, he drew his sword, which gleamed in the dim lights.

The monster laughed. "YoU ARe aN AMusING chILD. I cOUld ALmosT swEAr yoU tHInk yoU'rE a sHi—"

The monster trailed off suddenly, examining the boy more closely. A note of hesitation entered its horrible voice. "...maSAKa..."

The boy smiled even more grimly. his blue eyes hard and sharp behind his glasses. "And now that I've identified the criminal, it's time for the judgement." He held his sword before him in both hands and closed his eyes. "Tsukamae...ZENIGATA!"

Michie's eyes widened as the sword...changed. It got longer, sharper-looking, like a grown-up's sword...and the boy grasped it firmly by the hilt, looking as though the weight and bulk of the sword meant nothing to him. The ribbons on the pommel of the sword started to glow, then lengthened, transforming into a chain with a large, heavy shackle on the end. The boy reversed his grip on the sword, and the chain lashed out, the shackle clapping itself around one of the monster's wrists.


The boy's smirk grew; his eyes flashed dangerously as he leapt high in the air, sword raised over his head...

There was a bright, blinding flash of light as the sword connected with the back of the monster's head, and suddenly the monster wasn't there anymore. The boy landed in a crouch, the now-empty shackle and chain clattering heavily to the floor in front of him before shrinking back into two silk ribbons, even as the rest of the sword shrank back into the child-sized shape it had originally been. After a moment, the boy stood and approached her. She shrank back uncertainly; she was a little afraid of this strange boy who had just...made the monster go away? Like Kamen Yaiba, only...

"Wh-who are you?" she asked timidly.

The boy smiled gently. His smile would have made Michie feel better, if only he didn't still have his sword out. "Are you alright?" he asked gently.

"U-un," the girl nodded, swallowing.

"Yokatta," the boy replied, pushing his glasses up his nose. "I bet you're you want to sleep now, right?"

"I...I need to find my mommy—and my house is all burned up..."

"Aa," the boy nodded, rubbing his chin thoughtfully. "Well, I can't do anything about your house, but about the other...I can take you to where your mommy is. Is that okay?"

"You—you know where my mommy is?" Michie asked curiously, tilting her head. "But how? I mean, I don't even know who you are..."

He smiled. "My name is Edogawa Conan. And your mommy...well, why don't you come with me and I'll show you." He held out his hand—why wouldn't he put that sword away?—and waited patiently.

Nervously, Michie stood and, hesitantly, took the proffered hand.

"Yosh'...let's go." The boy began leading her back down the hall toward her apartment.

* * * * *



The sobbing mother clutched her daughter tightly, tears streaming down her cheeks as she smoothed the little girl's hair. "Michi..."

"Mommy, I was so scared! I couldn't find you anywhere, and there was a monster, and I—"

"Shh. It's alright now, I'm here..."

"...Mommy? You look sad. did...when Daddy..."

The woman sighed, her lips quivering as she looked at her daughter with eyes full of pain. "Anou...Michi...the truth is..."

Conan stepped forward, eyes full of sadness. "Suman na," he whispered. "It's time."


Michie looked from him to her mother, confused. "Mommy? What—"

"'s alright, Michi. Mommy's here. Everything's going to be alright."

"But...our home..."

"We're going to have a new home pretty soon."

"Oh. ...will it be far away? I don't wanna leave all my friends..."

Fresh tears streamed down her mother's cheeks. She pulled Michie into a tight embrace for a long moment, then drew back. Voice quavering, she said, "Michi...can you close your eyes for just a minute for Mommy?"

The little girl looked confused, but nodded, and did as asked. A moment later, she felt a soft pressure on her forehead—but when she tried to open her eyes, all she saw was light...

* * * * *

The woman sighed as the presence left her embrace, then turned her tear-streaked face to the boy standing beside her. "She' okay, won't she?"

"Un. She's where she belongs now. Where both of you belong." He swallowed. "I'm...sorry I didn't—"

"It's okay. I think it was already too late when you got here...I'm just glad you kept that thing from taking her away from me for good. Thank you." The woman took a deep, shuddering breath, then closed her eyes. "I'm ready now. Send me to my little girl...and my husband."

Conan nodded, and pressed the butt of his sword to the woman's forehead...

As she began to vanish, she opened her eyes once again, smiled, and said, "Arigatou...Shinigami-kun."

After the soul of the deceased woman faded into nothingness, Conan slumped against a ruined wall, removing his glasses and wiping tiredly at his eyes. "I really hate this damn job sometimes..."

But he knew there was no turning back now. Not after...what happened that day...

* * * * *


The red-haired Shinigami looked grim. "Ichigo, Rukia. We have a problem."

"Eh? A Hollow?"

"A rogue Shinigami."

Ichigo and Rukia exchanged a glance. "You mean Aizen and them?" Ichigo asked.

Renji shook his head. "No, here. We think..." He paused, frowning. "Well, Tenth Squad lost a member, and Hitsugaya-taichou sent out a search party. The missing man was found, dead, near the center of Tokyo."

"Eh?" Rukia asked.

Renji nodded. "Un. But, the thing is...they recovered the remains of the Shinigami, but there was no sign of his zanpakutou. And..."


"Well, someone has been clearing out Hollows and performing konsou in Beika City. But nobody's been assigned to that area in over a month."

"Beika City?" Rukia asked. "Isn't that—?"

"The Hotspot, yeah. The highest concentration of unnatural deaths in all of Tokyo."

"Unnatural..." Ichigo frowned. "Hollow?"

Renji shook his head. "Murder. Living humans killing each other. Shinigami tend to be on call to that area frequently, but a while ago there was a complete lull in activity. Now, there's a sudden influx of Hollows there, and they're all being taken out before anyone arrives. With konsou being performed without any active Shinigami in the area, the Hollows, and the missing zanpakutou..."

"You think there's another living human Shinigami running around in Tokyo," Rukia finished.

"That's what the captains think."

Ichigo frowned. "So what do we do?"

"We investigate, find out if there's another guy like you running around, and determine whether we should deputize him or stop him," Renji replied. "He's using a slain Shinigami's zanpakutou, which is an unusual situation in itself. That he seems to know exactly what he's doing with it is more troublesome."

Rukia nodded. "Un. We should go, quickly."

Return to top

Title:Ranma's Daughter
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

Ranma unexpectedly becomes a father, but not in the usual way. Or even in the UNusual way.

The rain fell in a soft rhythm; it had been raining for hours now. It was one of those steady, soaking rains; the kind that made one long for a warm hearth, a soft, thick blanket, and a steaming mug of hot cocoa. A lovers' rain, a family time rain...a depressing rain, for those with nobody to love or care for.

The girl pulled her thick, puffy pink jacket tighter against the chill evening air. Her eyes darted about nervously as she walked beside the tall, foreboding man in the black suede overcoat and the hat with the brim shading his eyes. She debated for perhaps the millionth time whether or not to try to strike up conversation with him, but once again kept her silence; the grim set of the man's jaw and her unfamiliarity with him would make any conversation attempt awkward, and she had learned—rather painfully—to speak only when spoken to.

A part of her, deep down inside, knew that was wrong, but the pain in her thin, small frame kept that part quiet.

"We're here," the man suddenly said. He pushed through the gate of an old, somewhat run-down property and marched up the walk to the door; she hurried her pace to stay with him, reaching his side as he pressed the buzzer.

A tall, pretty young woman with long brown hair and a frumpy dress answered the door. "Yes? Can I help you?"

The man's expression did not change, nor did his tone, as he replied, "I'm looking for Saotome Ranma. Is he in?"

"Just a moment, please," the young woman responded.

A moment later, a teenager with black hair tied in a pigtail appeared in the open doorway. "Yeah? Whatcha want?"

The grim man reached into his coat and pulled out a thick envelope. "Saotome Ranma?"

"Yeah, that's me."

"I have an urgent delivery for you." The man paused. "Might we speak in private?"

The young man hesitated. "Yeah. Come with me."

Ranma led the grim man and the small girl into the house, not seeming to take notice of the younger visitor. Through a connecting hallway they went, entering a small, heavily abused martial arts dojo. Once inside, he turned to face them, hands behind his back, giving the younger girl a quick, confused glance. "Okay, what's up?"

The man in the black coat frowned slightly. "Saotome-san, do you recall a woman by the name of Kanemaru Chiharu?"

Ranma blinked, a puzzled frown on his face for a moment. "Kanema..." His eyes widened. "Oh yeah, Chiharin!" He grinned. "Man, I forgot about her. Me an' Oyaji used'ta camp out near her place, an' I got ta know her while I wasn't at school or trainin'. She was cool."

"She recently passed away."

Ranma's mood dropped like a stone. "Oh, damn. Sorry t'hear that."

The grim man shrugged noncommitally. "Saotome-san, I represent the child welfare services bureau in this ward. Kanemaru-san had a will, and in it stipulated with great urgency that in the event of her death, her child—" He gestured at the young girl beside him— "should be immediately placed in the care of her father." He looked at the pigtailed teen intently. "Which is you, Saotome Ranma."

Ranma choked. "WHAT?!"

"This girl," the black-clad man repeated, "is Kanemaru Hiroko nee Saotome." He paused significantly. "Your daughter."

Return to top

Title:Rockman.EXE Version Up
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

A continuation of the Rockman.EXE storyline, picking up after the third game and ignoring games 4-6.

"So this is the data...this is his data..."


"Hmm. Incredible power. Impressive. No wonder..."


"But how...? How is such a powerful Navi possible...? How did he create something like—"



Click, click.


"So THAT'S his secret..."

Click. Chuckle.

"How foolishly simple."


"Hikari...I will create a more powerful Navi..."

"...and I will delete Rockman.EXE..."

Sinister laugh.

* * * * *

"Welcome one, welcome all! Welcome to the second annual NetBattle Tournament of Champions, N1 Grand Prix Version 2! The top battle Navis from all over the world have gathered here in our Grand Prix Arena to compete for the title of NetBattle Champion! Midorikawa Kero here, reporting live on all the action here at the N1 Grand Prix! So far, we've seen a lot of challengers from the first Grand Prix return, and there are also many new operators and Navis here to battle in this year's tournament! So let's get things started in our main dome with our first match..."

* * * * *

"Oh that really HIM?"

"It is! It's really him, OMG!"

Several pink and purple female Navis were gathered around one of the vidwindows in the Navi Lounge, watching as the first contestants arrived in the arena. Their attention was fixed on one particular Navi—a Navi who didn't look like much in the eyes of some, but who was known the world over for his incredible power.

Nearby, another pink Navi reclined in a floating chair, bootheels kicked up on a table in front of her. Such things were extraneous affectations in the cyberscape, as Navis had no need for comfort of any kind, but as the artificial intelligence that drove them continued to advance, making the electronic assistants seem more and more lifelike to their owners, many such things were programmed into the network to give the Navis a sense of being more than mere programs.

The Navis, of course, ate it up like RAM.

As the gaggle of spectators continued to squeal, the lounging Navi rolled her eyes and sighed, half-dozing as she tried to tune out the excited chittering and squawking of her peers.

"So strong..."

"So handsome..."

"...sleek and sexy..."

"He can scan my ports any day..."

Finally, the reclining Navi had had enough. "Ahem."

The others ignored her.


The gossipy, girlish squealing continued.

With a final sigh of disgust, Roll plugged herself out of the stadium network, not entirely sure what she was so upset about, and not particularly caring. "Mou," she muttered before going into standby mode inside Meiru's PET.

* * * * *

"And you are...?"

Two Navis stood across from one another in the cyber-arena. One was small, unassuming in appearance—barely deviated from the standard model battle Navi so many kids had—and had a quiet voice.

The Navi across from him, by contrast, was big, loud, and showy. A giant camera lens dominated his torso; a flash was situated on his left shoulder. "I am Cameraman!" he declared proudly, making a "viewfinder" with his fingers and peering at his opponent through it.

"Right, I should have guessed. Well, let's have a good match, ne?"

The small blue-and-black Navi began to charge forward, his arm morphing into a cannon.

Cameraman grinned. "FLASH!"

The flash on his shoulder flared brilliantly; the blue Navi had to shield his eyes. Not able to aim, he began firing his cannon wildly; the shots nevertheless flew in the general direction of Cameraman, who didn't seem to be in a hurry to evade. "F-STOP!" the photographic Navi shouted. The shots from the blue Navi's cannon froze in midair, then dissipated harmlessly.

"And now...ZOOM!" The lens on Cameraman's chest gleamed, and suddenly he was right in front of the smaller Navi, who had just begun to recover from the blinding flash of light. "AUTO-WIND!" A ribbon of film snaked out of Cameraman, winding itself around the blue Navi. He struggled to free himself; meanwhile, the shutterbug retreated to a safe distance. "And the birdie!" Cameraman's lens vanished, and the shutter behind it irised open. A sparrow-shaped projectile erupted from him, screaming toward the smaller Navi; there would be no dodging.

For some reason, the blue Navi didn't seem worried.

//Attack mode battle chip! FireSword! SLOT-IN!//

The ridges on the blue Navi's helmet gleamed, and suddenly his right hand transformed into a fiery steel blade. The binding film melted under the intense heat, and the Navi charged forward, slashing at the flying bird and obliterating it in a shower of data cubes.

"Well...they said you were good," Cameraman said, grinning. "Your operator is a bit slow, though, don't you think?"

"We'll show you slow," the blue Navi replied, smirking.

//Cannonball! SLOT-IN!"//

A heavy iron ball suddenly appeared in the blue Navi's hand. "Here, catch." With a perfect fastball pitch, he sent the heavy ball hurtling toward Cameraman's flash. The bulb shattered with a resounding crack. While the larger Navi staggered, another cannonball materialized in the blue Navi's other hand; another perfect pitch destroyed the camera lens.

//Shotgun! SLOT-IN!//

The Navi's hand reformed into a cannon; he fired a rapid spray of shots at Cameraman, who staggered backward, small explosions ripping across his body, before he lost resolution and was replaced by the hovering 3-D message "PLUGOUT".

The screens in the main dome of the Grand Prix stadium switched off the battle camera, replacing it with the message "Battle Over."

//And the winner of this first round, Hikari Netto and his Navi, Rockman!//

Netto grinned as he unplugged his PET from the battle podium. "Good work, Rockman," he said.

//You too, Netto-kun,// the blue Navi said, smiling up at him from the screen.

* * * * *

A young girl with shoulder-length, backswept brown hair typed away at a console in a modest, cluttered, cozy living room.

A voice behind her called out, "I'm going out for a little while."

She adjusted her large, round glasses and turned, frowning. "How long will you be gone?"

The tall man at the door shrugged. "Not sure. I have to go all the way out to Yokayoka to meet the lady that posted the request."

"Hmmm..." The girl nodded. "Okay. Good luck!"

"I won't come back empty-handed this time, I promise!"

Once the front door closed, the girl looked back at her computer, nodded once, and connected a long, slender cord from the console to a device on the floor...

* * * * *

Enzan peered cautiously around as he entered his home. The wall panel that monitored the house's systems flashed with a bright crimson glow; in addition to alerting the police, the warning alarm had also sent a secure message to his PET.

"Strange..." he mused as he walked around, carefully inspecting everything. "Nothing's been stolen..."

//I shall inspect the network, Enzan-sama,// Blues' voice piped up from his PET. //Plug me in and I'll search for viruses or signs of hacking."//

Enzan nodded and plugged into the network. Several minutes passed.

//This is indeed odd,// Blues reported at length.

"What is it? Any data missing?"

//Negative. There is nothing...I don't believe the intruder even plugged into the network.//

"This is too strange. Are there any odd thermal readings in the house?"

//Negative. The intruder isn't here.//

"Chikushou...what's going on here...?"

* * * * *

"HIKARI! You old dog! Long time no see!"

Yuuichirou smiled and led his family across the room to a tall, broad-shouldered man with flyaway gray hair and red-tinted spectacles, dressed in a green suit. "Teisel! You're looking well." He clasped the tall man's hand and shook it firmly, then turned to his family. "This is Dr. Teisel Bonne, an old colleague."

"We went to university together," Dr. Bonne said, grinning broadly.

"Teisel, this is my wife Haruka, and this is my son, Netto." The two bowed; Teisel bowed to Haruka and gave Netto a firm, hearty smack on the shoulder.

"So you're the famous Hikari Netto! I've heard a lot of stuff about you. You really stuck it to that old bird Wily, didn't you?"

Netto grinned sheepishly, rubbing the back of his head. " I helped a little." He held up his PET. "It was really Rockman that did all the hard work."

//Don't be so modest, Netto-kun,// the Navi said.

"Ah, so this is Rockman!" Teisel crouched slightly to peer directly into the screen. "I've been studying you, too. You're probably the most advanced Navi ever created, you know?" He paused, then grinned. "Well, until tonight."

"Eh?" the Hikari family chorused.

Teisel chuckled. "You'll see. I've got to take care of something real quick. Later, Hikari!"

"Bye! Nice seeing you again!"

* * * * *

"With the rising threat from the new stealth virus which has been reported across the Net, it's very important that many strong Net Navis are out there battling to keep the peace. Many powerful Navis are already doing their part, and many great NetBattlers are working hard to keep the crime rate down to a minimum.

"However, as this mystery virus spreads and grows stronger, we need more Navis, better Navis, stronger Navis. I've been working the last few months on a new next-generation prototype Navi. Created by analyzing the power and battle data from the world's strongest Navis, and by utilizing a revolutionary program code, this Navi is capable of outshining any Navi currently operating, with a vastly superior artificial intelligence.

"Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the experimental next-generation enhanced Net Navi...X."

* * * * *


A shadow darker than pitch emerged partway from the recessed alcove. "What fool dares seek me out in my personal domain? Do you truly wish to be deleted?"

"You don't have the power to delete me. And I've come here to prove it."

The non-light in the dim Cyberworld glittered off the black helmet of the reclusive Navi as he emerged from his alcove. Scornful eyes studied the interloper intently; there seemed nothing particularly remarkable about what he saw before him. "You look...vaguely familiar. I sense nothing special about you. However, I commend your sheer nerve for venturing this far. I shall allow you to leave unscathed, if you swear never to darken my path again."

The red Navi narrowed his eyes. "Are you that much a coward, that you will not fight me?" He shifted his stance, and a glowing energy blade flared from his right hand.

Forte scowled. "You are indeed a fool. Very well, then." One white-gloved hand emerged from his tattered brown cloak, a ball of plasma forming in the outstretched palm. "Deletion is the fate of all who oppose me."

He began to fire, but suddenly the red Navi was behind him, slashing in a complicated pattern. Forte's cloak fell apart, the remnants derezzing into the ether as they drifted to the ground. Forte spun, eyes wide, to see the interloper crouched low, sword upraised, smirking. His long silver-blonde mane fluttered behind him in the wake of his passage.

"Interesting," Forte mused. "Perhaps you present a most welcome challenge. I will have your name."

"I am called Zero."

"I see. Then prepare to become as one with your namesake..."

Return to top

Title:Ryouma 2/1
Genre:Alternate Universe
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

Ranma and Ryouga arrive from China with a VERY tragic story...

A gentle rain pelted the streets of Fuurinkan, the soft sound of droplets striking the pavement not quite covering the pounding of feet splashing through puddles, or the angry shouting coming from the northwest.

"DAMN YOU!" a young man's voice growled. "Get BACK here, you stupid old bastard!"

The scattered handfuls of people who were out and about in the rain watched the chaotic scene with amusement, confusion, and apprehension. A massive panda was charging up the street, eyes wide in terror. The boy chasing it looked angry. Supremely angry.

"Hold still, coward! I'm not finished with you by a long shot!"

The panda skidded to a halt in the rain and spun around, assuming a defensive stance. The boy unlimbered an umbrella from his backpack and rushed the animal.

"Hey, should that boy be pickin' on that panda?" one of the onlookers wondered.

The panda dodged the umbrella strike, and the odd weapon left a sizeable dent in the pavement.

"You wanna try tellin' 'im that?" someone else asked.

A sign appeared in the panda's paw as it frantically backpedalled away from the enraged teen. [Son, be reasonable!]


[Yes you are—] "GROOOWF!" The panda dropped its sign and skidded backwards on its behind as the umbrella drove its way home in the beast's gut.

Stashing the umbrella, the young man hefted the animal over his head and drove his point home by slamming the dazed panda into the street repeatedly. "I!" *WHAM* "AM!" *WHAM* "GOING!" *WHAM* "BACK!" *WHAM* "TO!" *WHAM* "CHINA!" *WHAM* Dusting his hands off, he scowled, showing a glimmer of fangs. "I don't have time for your stupid bullshit. I've seen hell because of you! HELL!" With that, he brushed his pigtail back over his shoulder, and turned to walk away.

Somehow, he found the gates of a large residence where he was sure there was a road just a moment ago. "Huh? What—hey!" He was shoved through the gate from behind by the bruised, battered panda.

[You'll thank me for this, boy,] read a sign waved in his face.

The young man sighed. "Well...I guess we can at least get out of the rain for a bit..."

* * * * *

Two young men sat in the steaming furo. "Well? Any idea how to get out of this mess?" the one wearing a spotted yellow bandana asked.

The other one shrugged and sighed. "This is one'a Oyaji's stupidest stunts, but...well, it is family honor. Even if I don't think my old man knows a damn thing about honor ta begin with." He glanced at the other boy. "You know, you don't really gotta be part'a this thing. I know you don't wanna be here, an' we both wanna be cured. Still, it's not like we hafta worry as much as th' old man does."

The one in the bandana looked down and shook his head wearily. "No, Ranma...honestly, I'm tired. It's been so long..." He sighed. "If you're stayin', then so am I. Besides, better that than what happened the last time we got split up."

Ranma shuddered. "Ya gotta point there, Ryouga. Still, if we stay put, we probably won't find a cure." He paused. "Or at least a way t' make it stick for good."

Ryouga growled. "No."

"Would it be that bad, Ryouga? It ain't like I wanna lose me, but..." He looked toward the door. "Think about it. Never havin' ta worry about water, or gettin' split up, an' ya know how strong an' fast we are..." He smiled slightly. "An' I think that Akane chick kinda likes—"

The door slid open. Akane stepped into the room, naked. She blinked.

Ranma blinked.

Ryouga blinked, got a nosebleed, and fainted.

Akane slid the door shut again.

Three seconds later, Tendou-ke was shaken by the force of a girl's scream.

Return to top

Title:Sakura's Path
Series:Street Fighter Alpha
Genre:Slice of Life, Action
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

An adult Kasugano Sakura reflects on her years of training to face Ryu.

The warrior sat in a plain, unadorned room in a small cabin in the countryside, meditating over the small, unlit incense pot sitting on the tatami before him.

As he focused his mind, body, and spirit, the three incense sticks in the burner slowly began to smolder, eventually glowing a bright, cherry red.

He spread his senses outward...

"So...this is where you've been hiding yourself."

His eyes opened. A woman's voice? But he hadn't—

There! The ki was expertly concealed from his senses, and only became noticeable as he turned to see the intruder upon his solace leaning in the doorway.

A young woman, in her early to mid twenties, dressed in a navy business suit with a modest-length skirt and black high heels. Her hair was worn loose, stopping at the middle of her back, and she wore round, rimless glasses. Something seemed familiar about her, but...

"Oh, don't tell me you don't recognize me," she said, smiling. "Then again, it has been a while." She made a playful "come-hither" motion, then walked out onto the rocky grounds. Now that he was paying attention to his surroundings, he wondered how he'd missed the crunch of gravel under her heels earlier.

Frowning, he rose and followed. The woman had stopped in the middle of the clearing, bathed in the full moonlight, next to a large handbag. She smiled at him, then bent down and removed her shoes, placing them in the bag. Next, she folded her glasses and placed them carefully in a side pocket. She reached down to her skirt, and with a loud, distinct sound of ripping velcro, split the seams along the sides. A similar sound of ripping velcro accompanied the abrupt removal of the sleeves of her blazer.

"What—?" he asked.

She bent down again, reaching into her bag, and withdrew a battered old pair of sneakers, which she stepped into and laced up. She then removed a pair of red padded fighting gloves, and after slipping them on, went into her bag once again, removing...a long white strip of cloth, which she tied around her head.

She posed, placing one hand on a cocked hip, and grinned at him, gesturing tauntingly with her other hand. "I did say I'd face you again, Ryu-sama."

Ryu's eyes widened. "Sakura...?"

"And this time, you're going down!"

* * * * *

"Sakura! It's been what, seven, eight years?" Ryu couldn't help but smile. This young woman before him was the star-struck schoolgirl who had tracked him down once and forced him to fight her...the one who had, astonishingly, copied his moves rather effectively, if inexpertly. For one who had not formally studied ansatsuken, the schoolgirl had put up an amazing fight, and had pressed him more than he had let on.

"Yeah, it has. I've still been keeping track of you, though. We almost crossed paths a few times before I graduated high school..."

"So you finished school...I'm glad. I never bothered with a formal education, and—"

"You never needed one, because you're a wandering warrior," Sakura cut across him, smirking. "Besides, between winning tournaments and the allowance you get from Masters-san, you've got all the money you need, ne?"

"True. But it's not a lifestyle that suits everyone."

Sakura shrugged. "Yeah, I learned that the hard way..."

* * * * *

" you understand why I've called you here today?"

Sakura smoothed her skirt nervously, quailing under the intense, hard stare of the vice principal. " it about my absences?"

"Partially." The middle-aged man shuffled some papers on his desk. "Your grades, when you bother to attend school, aren't bad. They're not stellar, but they're not bad. However, you are absent far more than you are present, and rumors of your...extracurricular activities...well, frankly, they're detrimental to the reputation of this school."

Sakura winced. "My...extracurricular activities."

"Skipping school to go all over the world getting in street fights isn't a normal, healthy, or favorable activity for a teenage girl."


" should fall to your parents to keep a rein on you and prevent you from running wild, but they're obviously not doing it. So, I'm going to—"

"Sensei...don't insult my parents."

"I am not insulting your parents, Kasugano-kun. I know you have a younger brother, who is very well-adjusted—obviously receiving proper attention at home. The problem with you is that you are as rarely at home as you are at school." He coughed. "Now, traditionally, problem students such as yourself are invited to withdraw enrollment."

"You're expelling me?"

"Do you believe I have an alternative?"

Sakura sat silently for a long moment, bangs obscuring her eyes as her fingers dug into her skirt. At length, she said quietly, "...yes, I do."


She looked up, fire in her eyes. "The real problem is the damage I'm doing to the school's reputation, right?" She swallowed, picking at her skirt. "Then...I'll stop wearing the school's uniform. I can—"

"Kasugano-kun, that isn't—"

"I'm not finished!" Sakura shouted. "Look...Sensei. I'm not going to stop fighting. I have...a reason. Something I need to do. Something important. But...I don't want to be thrown out of school and disappoint my parents." She sighed. "Is there some way I could be...I dunno, an 'off the books' student? I could study on my own time and send my work in to be graded, or—"

"That simply isn't acceptable. Who do you think you are, to suggest something so ridiculous and arrogant?"

"Who do I think I am?" Sakura asked, standing up, arms held stiffly at her sides. She looked her principal in the eye, gaze steely. "I'll show you who I am. SHINKUU..."

* * * * *

"Bye Mom! Bye Dad! I'll be back in a few weeks!"

"Don't forget to send your homework to the teacher, dear."

"Hai!" Straightening her skirt—blue, unlike the green of her real school uniform—and adjusting her headband, Sakura slung her small knapsack over her shoulder and headed for the train station.

Return to top

Title:Stealing The Philosopher's Stone
Series:Detective Conan
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

Kaitou Kid enlists the help of Edogawa Conan in stealing something that shouldn't even exist.

The summer night was still and hot, oppressive humidity hanging in the stiff, unmoving air, suffocating the energy out of all it touched. Tokyo is a city that never truly sleeps, but on this sleepless, sticky night, everything seemed a bit more subdued than normal.

Edogawa Conan, for a change, had the bedroom of Mouri Kogoro all to himself, because the middle-aged detective had gone down to his office to drink the stifling heat away and had fallen asleep in a puddle of spilled beer, with a video of his favorite pop idol blaring on the small office television. However, Conan did not particularly enjoy the respite; he had stripped to a thin, sleeveless T-shirt and the thinnest pair of boxers he owned, but the humid air still made these garments cling to him like an unwanted second skin, and his bangs, damp and limp, refused to be cleared away from his eyes. He lay on his back on his futon, arms behind his head, staring at the dark ceiling and lost in thought.

The curtains rustled, and a light breeze drifted through the air. Conan took a moment to feel relief at the slight, cool breeze stirring the air...

...before remembering he hadn't opened the window. "Wha—MPH!"

A gloved hand covered his mouth.

"Quiet, Kudou," a soft voice whispered into the stillness.

Conan glanced up, blue eyes wide, into an almost identical set of blue eyes, shaded by a white hat brim...and an all-too-familiar monocle.

"Promise not to scream, or use any of your gadgets, or try to call the police."

Conan's eyes narrowed, but he nodded slightly. The hand was removed, and the figure straightened up to his full, impressive height, his long, white silk cape flapping in a nonexistent breeze.

A million questions and comments burned in the boy detective's mind. However, the first one that tumbled from his lips was:

"How can you stand to wear that stuff in this godawful heat?"

Kaitou Kid chuckled softly. "Practice."

Conan stood and leaned against the wall, crossing his arms. "So, what is it you want, thief?"

"I need your help."

Conan raised an eyebrow. "YOU need MY help? expect me to help you?"

"It wouldn't be the first time," Kid said lightly, smiling. Then, he became serious again. "There's something..." He paused. "I have a target. But it's going to be especially difficult this time, and I can't afford to screw this one up. That's why I need you."

Conan's eyes widened, his jaw slackening with disbelief. "You want me to help you steal something?!"

Kid waved his hands to ward off the onslaught of protests and shouting from the small boy. "Kudou, Kudou, calm down! Give me a chance to explain, will you?"

The detective narrowed his eyes. "This better be one damn good explanation."

"It is. You see...this isn't a normal heist. And the target..." He paused for a moment, his usual implacable poker face on the verge of slipping.

Conan snorted. "What, are you planning to steal the Crown Jewels or something?" He paused. "You're NOT, are you?"

Kid chuckled. "No, the Crown Jewels are worthless. Not even worth the laughs I'd get from taking them. But what I'm after is serious business...and I need your help, because it's going to be especially hard, and because..." He paused. "Because certain parties are VERY interested in this thing, and I've got a really, really bad feeling about this one. It's not playtime anymore, and..."

Conan waved a hand in his face. "Back up. What do you mean by 'certain parties'?"

Kid's eyes flashed, though his confident smirk didn't falter. "Aa, I think you might know them. They're some guys who aren't very nice...I know what they did to me, and I'm pretty sure you're after them too..."

Conan scowled. "Those kurozukume bastards?"

"It's in your best interests to make sure they don't get what I plan to steal."

"And you having it is somehow better?"

"Yes. Because it won't be dangerous in my care."

Conan raised an eyebrow. "So what exactly is the target, anyway?"

Kid told him.

Conan's eyes widened to the size of dessert plates...

* * * * *

"For most of my career as the Kid, I've been searching for a stone called the Pandora Gem. It's supposed to..." The thief laughed. "It's supposed to grant immortality. I don't know as I buy into that myself, but they DO believe in it, and that's enough reason for me to want to find it and destroy it first.

"But entirely different. I don't know what the Pandora Gem is even supposed to look like, but..." He swallowed. "The real. And I know what it looks like."

"You mean you know what the legends say it looks like," Conan corrected.

"No, I know what it—the Philosopher's Stone—really looks like. I know where it is, where it's being kept, even some of what's guarding it.

"The problem is that I think they know too, and they're not likely to be nearly as subtle as I am about getting their hands on it."

Conan stared at the thief in open disbelief. "YOU? SUBTLE?!"

"Kaitou Kid Rule #1: Nobody gets hurt." The thief raised a gloved finger. "My methods are loud, flashy, a bit obnoxious, yes. But I have never harmed anyone, and I never will."

Conan frowned. "Okay, I'll give you that one. But the kurozukume...would just kill anyone that got in their way."

"Right. Especially with something this big as the reward."

"I still don't see why you need me for this. Even if this is for real."

"I couldn't do this with anyone else BUT you, Kudou," Kid replied. "There are two special keys which open the path to the Stone. No other means but these keys will work. I already made a probing attempt at it, and ruined two of my best lockpicks."

Conan smirked.

"The keys are made of some special metal that resists acid, and the lock tumblers themselves are made of the same metal, and touching them with anything makes acid fill the lock mechanism. Anything you stick in the lock that isn't made of that metal—"

"I getcha," Conan replied. "So there's two keys, which means you probably need to use them both at the same time."

"Right. And one of the keys is in a place that's far too small for me to reach—it's in a place only a child can fit into."

"Aaaaah, I see now."

"Also, I'm not sure what traps wait beyond the two locks...I'm good at thinking on my feet, but the people who set this up are..."

Conan nodded. "And you're worried that the kurozukume will be able to get it before you can, because at least one of them knows what APTX-4869 does..."

"So they could shrink any one of themselves down like you are, and get the second key, right."

The boy detective frowned. "Okay, I really don't like the idea of stealing this thing, but...I really don't want to think about what'd happen if those bastards got hold of the Philosopher's Stone...if it's real."

"It's the real thing. I, ah, saw it being used..."

Conan raised an eyebrow.

"Lead into gold, Kudou," Kid hissed, eyes wide. "And that's only half what that Stone can do! If they had that..."

"And you naturally don't have any intention of using it yourself," Conan said with a smirk, arms folded.

Kid sighed, shaking his head. "Have you ever read Harry Potter?"

The young detective gave him a dirty look.

"I'm serious!" Kid replied, eyes wide. "I'm not trying to make fun of you."

Regarding him coldly, Conan sighed and closed his eyes. "Only someone who wanted to find the Stone, not use it, could have taken it from the Mirror of Erised."

"Exactly. I've FOUND the Stone, but the reality protecting it from being taken is a bit more complicated than a magic mirror." He paused. "So...will you help me?"

Conan stared at him for a long moment...then sighed, nodding. "Yeah. I'll help."

Return to top

Title:Stop And Stare
Paranoia Agent
Genre:Crossover, Random
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 17, 2012

Two Shinigami observe three people behaving strangely.

"Oi, Rukia."

The diminished Shinigami looked up at her subordinate, then followed his disturbed gaze across the park to three people sitting on a bench, making faces as they drank what looked like...

"What the HELL are those three doing?!" Ichigo demanded

Rukia looked at the trio on the bench, then back up at Ichigo. "Well...judging by the drain cleaner they're drinking, I'd say they're trying to kill themselves." She frowned. "Should we maybe call someone?"

Ichigo shook his head. "No, there's no need..."

"WHAT? can't just let them die..."

The orange-haired substitute Shinigami looked at her like she had grown a second head. "Oi...don't tell me you didn't notice."

"Notice what? That three people are trying to kill broad public..." Rukia blinked, then looked at the trio again. "...oh. ...OH." She blinked some more, just for good measure. "...what the hell?"

"NOW you notice," Ichigo remarked dryly. "What...should we do about it?"

The three Drano-drinkers on the bench stood, the youngest of them giggling happily, and walked hand-in-hand out of the park, humming 'London Bridge' loudly. None of the other people walking past paid them any heed.

Rukia and Ichigo stared after them for a long moment.

" know," Rukia said slowly, "I...think maybe we should just pretend we didn't see that."

Ichigo nodded. "I can live with that."

They went home.

* * * * *

*Yes, it really does have to be a delusion,* the elderly gentleman known as 'Fuyubachi' thought to himself as he, Zebra, and Kamome left the park. *After all, those two young people clearly saw us...*

"Hey, Fuyubachi! What's next? Fuyubaaaaachi!"

"Huh? Oh...let's get some plastic bags from the conbini and suffocate ourselves."


*Yes...we have to keep trying harder, is all...*

Return to top

Title:Ten Years
Series:Detective Conan
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 11, 2012

Kudou Shinichi has been Conan-free for ten years...

"Touchan! Pass!"


The day had dawned cloudy and wet, but by noon, the sun had come out, burning away the last of the morning drizzle and baking the ground, leaving the grass of the park green, damp, and spongey. The perfect day for a family outing in the park, and an impromptu game of soccer with some old friends.

Friends who, he lamented, he couldn't talk of 'old times' with, because they didn't associate him with the person who used to be one of their gang.

But...that didn't really matter. He'd forged a new friendship with them, and his son liked them well enough. The seven-year-old boy, his spiky brown hair tousled and his bright blue-grey eyes shining with excitement, deftly intercepted the speeding soccer ball with his foot, kicking it forward and chasing after it, laughing as the older kids downfield moved to block him.

Off to the side, sitting on a picnic blanket, remains of a large lunch scattered around her, his wife sat watching their game and smiling, a sunhat with a pink ribbon casting cool shade over her laughing eyes.

Sometimes, he had trouble believing almost ten years had passed since the laughter had returned to those eyes—in his heart, he still remembered the pain and longing he'd created there; the year of suffering and torment she went through, he'd give anything to take away.

Of course, he did the best he could, now, as he had for the last ten years, to mitigate the sins of the worst year of their lives. They were happy, their son was vital and healthy and as smart as both of his parents combined...

Life was very, very good.

"Koichi!" he called out. "Go right! You're about to get...nevermind." He laughed as his son went tumbling end-over-end across the grass, having slipped on a particularly wet patch of grass directly in his path. *He really should've noticed that grass was wet...I'll need to work with him on that.*

His wife had immediately rushed to the boy's side, frowning at his reaction; Koichi stood up, brushed himself off, and laughed, rubbing the back of his head. He smiled; everything seemed to be going




No. NO!






Ran...I never told you...and now...

...but...why? Ten years...dammit, it was OVER! It was


"Shinichi? SHINICHI?!"

"What's wrong with him, Neechan?"

"Ayumi-chan, call for an ambulance!"


"This is bad. He's burning up!"

"Yow! He's too hot to touch! I think he's actually on fire!"







"He's...what the hell?"


* * * * *

The first thing he saw when he awoke was a crowd of blurry faces amid a sea of white. He blinked up at them, noticing the worried, confused, anxious, and even angry expressions.

Definitely angry. Particularly HER. She was VERY angry.

Worried, yes. But angry.

Not good.

"Well...glad to see you're finally awake. Conan-kun."

VERY not good.


"Touchan? Why'd you get little? You're littler than me..."

Shinichi blinked. "Eh? That can't be right. I should at least be—"

"Exactly the same as you were ten years ago," Mitsuhiko said. "EXACTLY the same."

"Conan-ku...iie, Shinichi-niichan..." Ayumi began, hurt and confusion in her eyes. "Why didn't you tell us?"

"Better question. Why didn't you tell ME?"

Yep, Ran was EXTREMELY pissed.

Return to top

Title:To Get Where You Need To Go
Series:Ranma 1/2
Dora the Explorer
Genre:Crossover, Silly
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 17, 2012

Ryouga meets Dora.

"Let's see..." Hibiki Ryouga scratched his head, tightened his bandana, and adjusted his backpack. Frowning thoughtfully, he began muttering to himself, "Okay, from here, it's Ucchan's, then the high school, then the dojo. Ucchan's, high school, dojo. Ucchan's, high school, dojo..."

"Train station, store, hotel...train station, store, hotel..."

"Ucchan's, high school, dojo..."

"Train station, store, hotel..."

"Ucchan's, train store, dojo..."

"Train station, store, hotel..."

"Hotel, train school, dojo..."

"Train station, store, hotel..."

"Hotel store, school train, do...HEY!" Ryouga spun around, red in the face. "CUT THAT OUT! YOU'RE RUINING MY CONCENTRATION!"

The small, tan-skinned foreign girl on the sidewalk behind him blinked confusedly up at him with wide, innocent eyes. "¿Que?"

Ryouga paused, blinked...then, realizing he'd just screamed at a small child, he deflated. Shaking his head, he crouched down slowly to look at the girl at eye level. She was a cute kid, with a hairstyle not too dissimilar from Akane's, wide, dark eyes, a cheerful expression, and normal everyday little-girl clothes. She wasn't Japanese; he'd have to guess she was from Brazil or Mexico or some other place in Canada. "Sorry, I didn't mean to yell," he said in heavily accented English.

The girl smiled. "It's okay!"

Ryouga looked around, and didn't see any other tan-skinned gaijin on the sidewalk. "Are you alone, little girl?"

The girl nodded. "¡Si! Mi familia es on vacation here in Japan! They said it was okay for me to go sightseeing by myself for a few hours, but now it's time to go back to the hotel for dinner, as soon as I find the train station and then stop by—"

"The store, yeah, I heard." Chuckling, Ryouga patted the girl on the head, and shrugged off his backpack. Digging around for a minute, he pulled out a box of sakura mocchi. "Here, a tasty Japanese treat to take home for your family."

The girl beamed. "¡Gracias!" She then frowned thoughtfully. "But wait. I'm not supposed to take things from strangers."

Ryouga frowned. "Hmm. Well..." He paused, then dug around in his pack again, withdrawing a tattered map. "How about this. If you help me find three places on this map, then I'll give you these as a reward. Then it'll be okay, right?"

The girl thought about that for a minute. "Well...I guess so!"

* * * * *

"Annnnd here's the dojo! We did it!"

Ryouga smiled at his travelling companion. "You're really smart! And really good at finding your way around."

The girl shrugged, smiling. "I get around a lot back home."

Ryouga handed her the box of mocchi, and patted her on the head. "You'd better hurry now, ne? Your family's probably getting worried."

"¡Si!" The girl stuffed the box into her own backpack, thanked Ryouga again, and began to skip away, singing to herself. Ryouga chuckled as he watched her leave, then stepped through the dojo gates.

"New girlfriend, P-chan?" Ranma asked.

Ryouga kicked him in the face, then replied, "Just some tourist I ran into on the way here. She's a pretty smart kid. Followed the map straight here, no problem."

"It's pitiful that a little girl who isn't even Japanese can do that more easily than you can."

"Shut up."

* * * * *

"Did you have fun today, Dora?"

"Uh-huh! I hope I get to explore even more places tomorrow!"

Return to top

Title:Transformers: ReAnimated
Series:Transformers: Animated
Content Rating:All Ages
Updated:December 31, 2012

Continues the story following the capture of Megatron. A small taste of a VERY long planned work.

Two weeks have passed since the defeat and capture of Megatron. While Autobot forces in the outlying systems are still mopping up leftover Decepticon positions, tensions begin to fade in the Metroplex, the Autobot-held capitol of Cybertron. Ultra Magnus has largely recovered from the damage inflicted on him by the Decepticon master spy Shockwave, and having returned to active command duty, Magnus has many lingering issues to deal with...

* * * * *

"NO! can't do this to me!"

A blue Autobot stood in the center of a blindingly bright spotlight in an otherwise dark, cavernous room deep within the fortified Metroplex of Cybertron.

The only other lights in the chamber shone up from a raised dais onto the grim faces of the Autobot Council and Ultra Magnus, supreme commander of the Elite Guard.

"We've taken depositions from everyone affected by your actions, I've evaluated your behavior during your thankfully brief time in command, and I've examined many security recordings that illustrate quite clearly what an utter travesty entrusting the safety of Cybertron to you was. I have had many doubts about you in the past, and I sincerely hoped I was wrong...but I see now that trusting you with authority of any kind is a mistake."

"NO! I did what was best for Cybertron! I did what I had to do—"

"You usurped authority, declared yourself the next Magnus, overrode the wishes of the Autobot Council, and completely disrupted civic order all over Cybertron. And to top it off, REAL heroes saved the entire universe from Megatron while you sat around with your pistons up your exhaust port. If anything, you made it a lot harder for Optimus Prime and his team to actually stop the Decepticons, all by being a self-important, swaggering glitch-head."

Ultra Magnus' vitriolic words rang against the metallic walls of the tribunal chamber. The Council sat in silence, staring gravely at the Autobot whose fate was being decided.

Sentinel Prime stared in disbelief at his commander. "But...but..."

"But nothing," Ultra Magnus said harshly. "You're finished, Sentinel."

The Autobot commander descended from the dais and walked slowly, purposefully across the room, each step echoing with a resonant clank. Once he reached the podium upon which Sentinel Prime stood, he reached out and pressed the palm of his hand against the smaller Autobot's chest. When he withdrew his hand, Sentinel's insignia had been stripped of the wings that identified him as a member of the Elite Guard.

"You are hereby expelled from the Autobot Elite Guard," Ultra Magnus declared, "and stripped of your rank. You will be reassigned to a new post within the next decacycle." He turned his back on his former second-in-command. "Dismissed!"

For a long moment, Sentinel could only stare in mute shock and outrage at Ultra Magnus' back. Then, stiffly, he turned and walked out of the tribunal chamber, fists clenched at his sides and trembling in fury.

* * * * *

"Jazz, have you seen Optimus today?"

The newest member of Autobot Earth Base looked up from the monitor console at the elder medibot. "OP took off for Cybertron about an hour ago. He's got somethin' pretty big up his crankcase, said he wanted to talk to UM in private."

"Huh," Ratchet grunted, rubbing at his chin. "Wonder what about?"

"Beats me," Jazz replied.

Ratchet fixed him with a hard look. "Y'know, you could just say 'it's classified'; I was rebuilding higher-ranked soldiers than you before the Cybertronium in your protoform was even mined. I know the score."

Jazz raised his hands placatingly. "Hey, be cool, Ratchet. I really don't know, cross my Spark." He frowned. "All I know is it's got somethin' to do with a transwarp trace signature he's been trackin' when he thought nobody was lookin'."

Ratchet's optics widened. "Oh, SLAG."

* * * * *


A massive magnocutter tore huge chunks of rock and clouds of dust out of the barren, dull surface.


Optics glared at the brownish rock, as though their owner could bore through to the planet's core with the sheer force of his hatred.


Sentinel angrily tossed the magnocutter across the quarry, where it struck a workface and caused the entire thing to collapse in a massive shower of pebbles and dust.

The disgraced Autobot let out an angry hiss. "And I absolutely hate YOU, Optimus. THIS IS ALL YOUR FAULT!"

If the target of his venomous ire had been present, he would have presented the numerous errors in that particular string of logic.

Of course, there was nobody else on this worthless ball of rock. Just him, all alone. Stripped of his rank and dignity, exiled to the most tedious, menial, demeaning job Ultra Magnus could come up with.

One day, he had been the Acting Magnus, with his optics set on claiming the title for keeps.

The next, he was merely Sentinel, cashiered out of the Elite Guard and kicked off Cybertron because obviously Ultra Magnus liked Optimus better than him.

Optimus. It was all HIS fault.

Optimus, whose smug superiority—always under the guise of niceness and willing comeraderie—had led to a string of misfortunes that, for reasons Sentinel could not fathom, had led to an unexpected and undeserved fall from grace.


With a loud, frustrated sigh, Sentinel walked over to the workface and recovered his magnocutter.

* * * * *

Sentinel frowned as the proximity alert beeped insistently over his comm link to the base station. "There aren't any supply ships scheduled for today..."

Irritably, he shut down his magnocutter and headed into the converted bunker that served as his home and only link to the rest of the universe—not that anyone generally bothered to call, and he doubted they'd respond to any of his hails if be bothered to send any out. The mid-range scanner screen was flashing bright red, and the voice of the computer was repeating an alert over and over again.

"Shut up, I heard you," he grumbled. The audio warning abruptly ceased. "Display visual scan."

The flashing red screen changed to a shot of the Kuiper belt at the rim of the system. A roughly spheroid object, ringed with a cloud of debris, was sailing gracefully through the assorted frozen detritus.

"Hmmm, that's not a comet," Sentinel mused. "It's not an asteroid, enhance visual and identify object."

//Cannot enhance visual. Interference limits the function of long-range optical scanners. Cannot identify object. No data matching object profile exists.//

"Huh...looks like I'm about to discover something new," Sentinel said, a faint surge of hope rising up within him. If he found something interesting out here in the exhaust port of space, it might just be what he'd need to get back to Cybertron... "Computer, analyze and report."

//Analyzing...analyzing...error! Sensor data rejected by logic circuits! Error! Sensor data rejected by logic circuits!//

"I don't care about your slag-sucking logic circuits, tell me what the thing IS!"

//Bypassing logic circuit error. Displaying raw sensor data.//

Readouts and wireframe schematics began scrolling on the screen at an alarming rate. Sentinel scanned it all, turning it over in his processor. His optics widened in alarm. "There's...there's no WAY. This has to be a malfunction..."

//No malfunction detected in sensor arrays. Raw sensor data confirmed by repeated scan with boosted active sensor bandwidth.

//...alert! Object has detected active phase scan. Object has increased speed and is approaching the planet. Estimated time of arrival, two minutes.//

"Two minutes..." Sentinel stood and raced outside, staring up into the sky. All too soon, the impossibly massive object loomed large in orbit, and Sentinel couldn't help but wonder if his optics were malfunctioning.

And yet, there it was.

A mechanical planetoid, roughly half the size of Cybertron, its surface a tarnished, mottled golden color. A large orifice that looked for all the world like some disturbingly massive predatory maw protruded from the nearest hemisphere of the planetoid. What he had initially assumed to be a ring of debris was actually a small number of irregular satellites connected by arcs of plasma.

"Reboot me," Sentinel breathed softly.

* * * * *

The great maw on the mechanical planetoid began to glow an angry, pulsing red. Sentinel nearly collapsed as a deep, booming voice resonated in his processors.


"Yes...I am. I was built and formatted on Cybertron."


"And what of it?" Sentinel demanded angrily.


"Optimus did NOT best me!" Sentinel roared. "Any cycle, any sector, I am by far a better robot than he could ever hope to be!"


"What's your point? Who or what are you, and what are you doing scanning my memory banks?!"


As if to make the point clear, the entire planet began to shudder, and a massive explosion ripped apart a nearby outcropping. The huge boulders were caught up in a tractor beam and sucked into the glowing maw.



"Well, we have that much in common, I guess."


"Cybertron? Destroy...Cybertron?" Sentinel asked. "NEVER! I may be royally ticked at the Elite Guard right now, but that's still my home—"


A pause.


"What sort of incentive?"


"Power...beyond Ultra Magnus...beyond Megatron..."


"And if I refuse?"


"That's a convincing argument," Sentinel agreed.


"Yes. I will become your herald."


And Sentinel found himself rising into the air, arcs of raw energon crackling around his body as his circuits burned and his processors screamed. Such agony...he was almost certain his Spark was going to be extinguished by whatever this monstrosity was doing to him...

And then it ended, and he felt himself surging with power unlike any he had ever known.



The reformatted Autobot's optics blazed with blood-red fire. "I hear and obey, mighty Unicron!"

* * * * *

"So, are Moonracer and Chromia?"

Optimus scratched his head idly. " know, I don't think I've even seen those two since before..." He trailed off, shifting uncomfortably.

"Oh." Blackarachnia looked down. "I guess if I tried calling them, they'd probably short-circuit."

"It might be a little...awkward, right out of the blue like that, yeah." Optimus smiled reassuringly. "But someday, right?"

"Someday," Blackarachnia echoed.

* * * * *














Return to top

Title:Untitled Harry Potter Project
Series:Harry Potter
Genre:Drama, ???
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 17, 2012

An alternate sixth year fan novel. (Replaces Half-Blood Prince)

[Author's note: I actually have a LOT more of this one written than I've posted here, but this is the most (more or less) contiguous chunk of the story, so I decided just to post this part.]

An unusual amount of commotion pervaded the Great Hall. True, the Sorting Feast was never a quiet affair, with new students marvelling at the wide variety of magic on display in the castle, old friends catching up with each other animatedly, and the ever-present clank, clatter, and clamour of much food being consumed by many hungry mouths. Tonight, however, there seemed to be a lot more movement between the House tables than usual.

"Wot's goin' on over there?" Ron wondered, glancing in the direction of the Ravenclaw table. A large knot of students—mostly witches—clustered around one end, and several excited squeals erupted from the throng.

Hermione crinkled her nose in distaste. "Probably someone with a new shiny bauble, or one of those horrible gossip magazines." She cut into her steak delicately, noting that Parvati Patil and Lavender Brown had just vacated the table and were rushing over to join the throng.

Harry spared the briefest glance at the Ravenclaw table before returning his full attention to his plate. Whatever it was, it probably had nothing to do with him, and he didn't feel like worrying about it at the moment. He was too happy at Lupin's return to Hogwarts to worry about anything in particular except the steak-and-kidney pie in front of him.

A second-year girl scrambled back over to the table at that point, giggling as she plopped back onto her seat, situated between the Creevy brothers and Ginny Weasley. Ron leaned across the table toward her. "Oi, what's goin' on over there?"

The girl looked up from her roast beef and smiled. "Oh, a seventh-year girl had a baby over the summer. He's really cute."

The others blinked at that. "A BABY?" Ron asked.

Hermione sniffed. "Really! Not even out of school yet, and—how disgraceful!"

At that particular moment, Parvati and Lavender returned to the Gryffindor table, squealing and giggling madly. Much to their surprise, the two girls grabbed Hermione and Ginny and pulled them to their feet.

"Geroff!" Ginny protested.

"What're you playing at?" Hermione snapped at Parvati.

"C'mon, Granger, even you have to love this!" Parvati insisted. "Cho Chang's had a baby!"

"I didn't even know she was pregnant!" Lavender said, giggling.

"Cho Chang!?" Ron asked disbelievingly.

"Oh, he's just adorable!" Parvati gushed. "He has the prettiest green eyes..." With that, the two giggling girls dragged Hermione and Ginny over to the Ravenclaw table.

None of them noticed Harry, whose head had snapped up sharply.

Ron glanced at him. "D'you know anything about this, mate?" he asked thickly, mouth full of ham and boiled potato.

Harry said nothing. A cold dread had begun to seep through his veins.

Several minutes later, the Gryffindor girls returned to the table, seating themselves just in time for the desserts to appear. Hermione had an unpleasantly thoughtful look on her face.

"Well? Is it true then?" Ron asked as he began helping himself to pudding.

"Yes, it's true. There's a baby, and Cho says it's definitely hers." Hermione toyed with her fork, frowning. "Named him Cedric."

Ron blinked. "She had a baby with Cedric?"

"Don't be stupid," Hermione said. "She's only just had the baby. She'd had to have gotten pregnant in November or December—"

"Oh...right." Ron frowned. "So who—?"

"She didn't say who the father is. Funny though...he really does have the most remarkable green eyes..." Her gaze flicked over to Harry, and one eyebrow climbed up her forehead.

Harry remained silent. After several minutes, he left the Great Hall without a word.

* * * * *

Harry sat on his four-poster bed in Gryffindor Tower (having been fortunate enough to learn the new password from Sir Nicholas on his way up), glasses on his nightstand, his mind whirling.

Cho had been pregnant. Cho had had a baby. A baby with green eyes.

Cho certainly hadn't been pregnant the previous year, though, had she...?

No, he thought, she definitely had not been pregnant. Not that night...

The door opened, and Ron's ginger head poked in. "All right, Harry?"

Harry shook his head, then placed his face in his hands, digging his fingertips into his unruly black hair.

Ron walked in and seated himself on the bed opposite. "What's wrong, mate? You're not upset Cho went and had a kid, are you? I thought you were over her..."

Harry looked up, sliding his hands only far enough down his face to uncover his eyes and stare pointedly at Ron. "Hermione's right, you know," he said. "You are positively disgustingly thick at times."

Ron blinked. "What crawled up your arse, then?" he said, irritation creeping into his tone.

Harry sighed, and let his hands fall to his lap.

There was a tentative knock on the door. "Harry?" Hermione's voice called.

"Yeah, he's in here," Ron replied.

The door opened, and Hermione walked in. She carefully seated herself on Dean Thomas' presently unoccupied bed, then fixed a gaze that was half sympathetic, half disapproving on Harry. "He's yours, isn't he? Little Ced."

Harry sighed, and nodded. "Probably."

Ron blinked. "Wha—yours?" His eyes widened. "Y' Cho...?"



Harry sighed. "That night..the last D.A. meeting. Before the Christmas holiday, I mean."

"The night she snogged you?" Ron asked.

Harry nodded.

"Only you did more than just snog, didn't you?" Hermione asked.

"That should be obvious," Harry retorted snarkily.

"...whoa," Ron breathed.

"But I don't understand," Harry said with an exasperated sigh. "She never looked pregnant...why didn't she tell me? Why didn't she say anything? She should've..."

"She might have been ashamed or embarrassed, Harry," Hermione said. "Then there's the fact that you two had a row in February, remember? She might not even have known before then."

"She still should've—"

"Maybe you should talk to her and ask why she didn't," Hermione advised.

"Why should I? It's obvious she doesn't want me to have anything to do with...with her, or with—with—"

"With your son," Hermione said in a firm tone.

" son," Harry said, disbelief in his voice. "My son."

There was silence for a long moment.

"Couldn't...I mean..." Ron looked between the two of them. "Could it be someone else's? I mean, no offence, but Cho isn't exactly the most..." He trailed off. "Maybe she—you know—with someone else—before you, I mean..."

Harry shook his head. "She—she was a virgin. That night, I mean." He blushed faintly, as did Hermione.

"Well..." Ron cast about for something to say, then shrugged and lapsed into silence again.

Harry stood, grimacing. "I'm going to speak to Dumbledore," he said, extracting his Invisibility Cloak from his trunk. "If anybody wonders where I went, I'm having a bath."

They barely had time to nod to him before he opened the door and vanished from sight mid-stride.

* * * * *

"Sugar quill," Harry snapped at the stone gargoyle as he strode purposefully up the corridor. The gargoyle slid aside; if Harry hadn't been in such a preoccupied state of mind, he would have marvelled at the fact that he guessed the password on the first try. Instead, he simply moved to the spiralling staircase and waited impatiently for it to reach the top. Arriving on the landing, he knocked brusquely on the oak door.

"Come in," Dumbledore's aged voice called from within.

Harry opened the door, removing his cloak as he stepped over the threshold into the circular office. "Ah, good evening, Harry," Dumbledore greeted as the teenaged wizard threw himself heavily into one of the squashy armchairs in front of the headmaster's desk. "What a pleasant surprise, a visit from you on the first night of term—"

"Did you know? About Little Cedric."

"—Ah." Dumbledore sighed. For a moment, he said nothing; at length, he flicked his wand at a polished cupboard across the room; an ornate silver snifter and two brandy glasses floated across the room and landed on his desk. "Ordinarily, I'd not offer a student liquor, but I suppose sixteen is old enough for a young man to have a bit of brandy...and you certainly have the air of a man who could use a stiff drink." He poured two glasses of fire-coloured liquid from the snifter and passed one across to Harry.

"So you did know, then."

The old wizard sighed. "I wasn't certain until the afternoon he was born, but...yes, I knew Miss Chang was pregnant. I'd suspected perhaps you were the father."

"And you didn't tell me?"

"As I said, Harry," Dumbledore said, sipping his drink, "I wasn't certain until the child was born. Which was, I might add, less than two weeks ago."

Harry bolted back his drink recklessly, then slammed the glass roughly back onto the desktop. "I thought you weren't keeping secrets from me anymore."

Dumbledore refilled Harry's glass and sat back in his chair. He regarded Harry over the rims of his spectacles for a long moment, then said softly, "Even if I'd been certain before he was born, and even after, when I was not my place to tell you." He sloshed his brandy around in his glass for a moment, then took a long sip. "Though, had Miss Chang outright refused to ever tell you, I certainly would have."

Harry snorted. "She's had what, nine months to tell me? Doesn't seem in any big hurry, does she?"

"I cannot begin to ascertain her reasons for keeping this from you, Harry," Dumbledore said. "Perhaps the—indiscretion—shamed her. Perhaps she was angry with you at the time, and felt it best to avoid further association with you. Perhaps she was scared of your reaction." He sighed. "In any event, she has gone to great pains to keep her pregnancy a secret from everyone, save her parents, myself, Madame Pomfrey, and Professor Flitwick. Even when it became obvious to us that she was with child, she adamantly refused to identify the father." He peered at Harry again with his tranquil blue eyes. "She was most insistent that her pregnancy was her fault alone, and that she saw no need to implicate the child's father in her own stupidity."

Harry sighed, sipping his drink. "How can she say that? It takes two to make a baby..."

"Yes, indeed it does," Dumbledore said, eyes twinkling. "And I assume your participation in the event was of a most willing nature?"

Harry flushed. " could say that, yes."

Dumbledore smiled. "You are not the first young man, nor she the first young woman, to find themselves in this particular predicament, Harry. And believe it or not, this sort of thing happens to wizards and witches almost as often as it happens to Muggles."

Harry nodded, taking another swig of his brandy. "So..."

At that moment, the door to the office burst open, and Madame Pomfrey, the school nurse, bustled in. "Albus! I know who it is!" Harry glanced around; the plump witch had a somewhat triumphant expression on her face, and clearly did not notice him sitting there. "I figured it out—Little Ced's father—"

"Is me," Harry interrupted.

Madame Pomfrey blinked at the interruption, glanced at Harry, blinked again, then unexpectedly launched into a furious tirade. "YOU! What you did to that poor girl—and not even being there for her! You cad! You should be ashamed—"

"It'd have been a bit bloody hard to be there when I JUST FOUND OUT TONIGHT!" Harry snarled, draining his glass once again and slamming it down so hard it shattered. "She hasn't spoken to me since May, and she certainly never told me she was pregnant with MY CHILD!"

"Calm yourself please, Harry," Dumbledore chided, idly repairing the broken glass and refilling it.

Madame Pomfrey seemed taken aback at Harry's angry outburst; she'd never witnessed the boy in such a temper before. "You didn't know then?"

"Too bloody right I didn't know! I never know anything until it's too goddamn late to do anything about it!"

"Poppy, you recall how reluctant Miss Chang was to reveal the identity of the father. Didn't it occur to you that perhaps she'd kept it secret from him as well?"

Madame Pomfrey looked from Harry to Dumbledore, then sighed. "I don't suppose it did." She frowned. "But then, she told you tonight?"

Harry snorted. "No, she didn't. I figured it out for myself when everyone was gushing about Little Ced's 'beautiful green eyes'." He gestured expansively with the brandy glass he wasn't even aware he'd picked up, then drained it in one swallow. "Wasn't too hard to put two and two together after that."

"Oh dear," the mediwitch said.

"Harry," Dumbledore said, "would you be so kind as to locate Miss Chang and Professor Flitwick for me?"

Harry blinked somewhat stupidly at him; it took him a moment to understand, after which he nodded and withdrew the Marauder's Map from his robes. Tapping the parchment with his wand and muttering the incantation, he let his eyes roam over it for a moment. "Cho's in the Ravenclaw common room," he said at length. "Professor Flitwick's in his office."

"Thank you."

"How did you—?"

Dumbledore rose and strode to the fireplace, where he took a pinch of Floo powder from the ceramic pot on the mantle and threw it into the flames. "Filius, could I see you for a moment?"

He stepped back, and the squat, gnomish Charms professor emerged from the fireplace with a small hop. "Yes, Albus?" he asked.

"Filius, I'd like your permission to allow Mister Potter here to visit the Ravenclaw common room."

Flitwick frowned, glancing at Harry. "You want to—but why? I mean, it's highly irregular—"

"Harry is the father," Dumbledore explained, "of Miss Chang's child."

Flitwick's eyes widened. "Oh." He paused, looking Harry up and down as if he'd never seen him before. "Oh. I see...I see..." His brow furrowed deeply. "Alright, I suppose..."

"Thank you. Harry, at your leisure..."

Nodding, Harry stood and walked to the fireplace. As he threw in some Floo powder and stepped into the flames, he heard the voices of his professors trail off...

* * * * *

He emerged from the Ravenclaw common room grate with a soft whoosh, landing silently on the royal blue carpet. He glanced around; the round, blue-and-bronze-decorated room was rather like the Gryffindor common room, with the exception of the many bookshelves, the low-hanging oil lamps for reading, and the large marble statue of Rowena Ravenclaw. On a loveseat near the stairs leading up to the dormitories, Cho sat, a blanket across her lap, Little Cedric cradled in her arms, swaddled in blue.

His breath momentarily caught in his throat. At the end of last term, he'd felt a hollowness inside where his feelings for Cho had once lain, carved out by the death of Sirius and the prophecy that he must one day kill Voldemort or die trying. Now, as he stood there, watching her, seeing her holding his son—their son—in her arms...

The hollowness began to fill with warmth anew, as well as a bitter pain.

"Cho," he said softly.

Cho gave a start, and looked up sharply. Her dark, almond eyes widened. "H-Harry?" she asked. "Wh-what are you doing here?"

Harry crossed the room slowly, crouching before her. "I came..." He paused, unsure what to say. "I came to see our son," he said at length.

"Then...then you know," Cho said shakily. Harry nodded. Cho sighed deeply, then pulled the blue blankets slightly apart, leaning forward and holding the baby out toward him.

Harry peered at the tiny, slumbering form. There was a sparse shock of dark hair upon a head with skin the colour of parched almonds—not quite Cho's light Asian complexion, nor Harry's own pale skin, but somewhere between. As Harry leaned over, the baby opened his eyes sleepily—bright green eyes, two emerald orbs that flashed up at Harry from an inquisitive face. Little Cedric blinked, then formed a tiny round 'o' with his mouth and reached up a stubby-fingered hand.

"He has your eyes," Cho said quietly.

"So I see," Harry replied. He reached out with a finger toward the infant; the tiny hand closed around it firmly, and the baby made a small, happy sound.

"He's beautiful," Harry said softly, eyes shining. Then he looked up at Cho. In a hoarse voice, he asked, "Why didn't you tell me?"

Cho didn't answer at once. She looked around the room, anywhere but at Harry, tears gathering in her brown eyes. "I—I don't know," she admitted. "Maybe I was scared. Maybe I was angry. Maybe...maybe I was confused. Maybe...maybe I just didn't want to—" She shook her head. "I'm stupid. I'm so stupid," she sobbed.

Little Cedric made a vaguely unhappy noise.

Harry placed a hand on Cho's shoulder. "I could have been there for you. I'd—I'd have wanted to."

"I know. I know," Cho said. "I think I felt...guilty. Afraid. Ashamed. And..." She swallowed thickly. "I didn't want to risk losing you. Like I lost him."

Harry went silent.

"I thought...if it was just me and the baby, then...then it'd be alright. I couldn't be hurt again, not like that." Cho began rocking Cedric in her arms. "I didn't want to feel. Not like that. I felt like that before, and look what happened." Tears rolled down her cheeks. "And he was just...just a by-stander. It''s you who was..."

"Yeah," Harry agreed quietly. "Voldemort wants to kill me."

"Don't you SEE?" Cho exploded. "If I lost you—and then surely if everyone knew, he'd come after Little Ced...I'd lose everything, Harry! EVERYTHING! I don't want to lose anything else..." She wept, her tears spilling onto the baby blanket; Little Ced blinked up at his mother inquisitively, though fortunately did not seem keen on emulating his mother's cries.

Harry slipped one arm around Cho's shoulders, and let his other arm fall protectively across her lap, surrounding their infant son in both parents' embrace. He gently slid the raven-haired girl over on the loveseat and sat down beside her, drawing her toward him. She leaned her head against his shoulder, her tears spilling onto his robes, as they had done that night...

"I'm not leaving either of you," Harry declared firmly. "I'm going to be here for my son. I'm going to be here for you, too." He turned her head towards him, and pierced her moist brown eyes sharply with his own green ones. "I don't know how you feel about me, or if you feel anything for me anymore. I'm not sure how I feel about you right now. I haven't felt anything for a long while now—I still feel hurt, bitter. But—" He sighed. "But seeing you here, with our son—"


"If you don't want anything to do with me, that's fine," Harry cut across her. "But I want to be part of our son's life."

Cho nodded. "I—I want you to, too. I just...I've been so confused, and scared, and stupid..." She sighed, and leaned into him; he tightened his hold on her, drawing her into an embrace, as he'd done that night. Between them, Little Cedric fell asleep again.

"So," Harry said at length, "his name is Cedric."

"I thought—it felt right."

Harry nodded. " does. Does he have a middle name?"

Cho shook her head. "I haven't been able to think of a proper one."

Harry smirked. "I've an idea."



Cho stared at him. "What?!"

Harry chuckled softly, though a ghost of pain flitted through his eyes. "Let me tell you a story..."

"Who's still out of bed down here?" a voice called sharply from the stairs. Both teenagers looked up to see Padma Patil descending from the girls' dormitory.

"Hello, Padma," Cho called.

"Oh, Cho. How's—Harry Potter? What're you doing here!?" Padma half-shouted as she espied the Gryffindor seated beside Cho.

Harry smiled. "I'm just visiting Cho—and our son."

Padma blinked. "Your...oh. Oh! Oh." She took a step backward, eyes wide. "Well, er...okay. Just...don't sit up too late, alright?" She retreated hurriedly up the stairs.

Harry grimaced. "I shouldn't've done that. Now the whole school will know by the end of breakfast tomorrow."

Cho smiled. "It's alright. I think they'd have known anyway." She looked at him inquisitively. "Now, you were going to tell me a story...?"

* * * * *

Harry went down for breakfast with the Ravenclaws the next morning. He received a number of very odd looks, but ignored them in favour of sticking close to Cho and the baby. Around them, whispers picked up, as well as startled exclamations; as he expected, the word was spreading quickly.

He gave Cho's hand a squeeze before taking leave of her for the Gryffindor table, where he quickly found Ron and Hermione. As he sat down, Ron loudly asked, "Long bath then, Harry?"

Harry grunted and poured himself some coffee. "I've a bit of a headache this morning."

Hermione gave him that half-sympathetic, half-disapproving glance again. "It's no small wonder, what with...all that."

Harry shook his head. "It's not that. I had about half a bottle of brandy in Dumbledore's office last night." He grimaced. "Thank Merlin it's Sunday. Only I don't reckon I ever want to get hung over again for the rest of my life."

"So where were you last night, Harry?" Neville Longbottom asked as he, Dean Thomas, and Seamus Finnegan moved to sit with the other three sixth-years. Before long, Lavender Brown had joined them; Parvati Patil had gone over to the Ravenclaw table to see the baby again and visit with her sister.

Harry glanced at the other Gryffindors. "Err..."

There was a sudden squeal, and Parvati rushed back over, sliding onto the bench with such force that she collided with the table and had to take a moment to collect her breath. Then, she gasped out, "Harry! You're Little Ced's daddy!"

Those for whom this was news stared at Harry; Ron and Hermione looked glum. Harry just nodded and sipped his coffee. "That's right."

"Harry? You're a—you have a baby!?" Neville squeaked.

"That's right," Harry repeated calmly, buttering his toast. "Pass the bacon, would you Ron?"

"You dog," Dean said, grinning. "You absolute dog!"

"I knew something looked familiar about those eyes," Lavender said.

"I should've seen it too," Parvati agreed, nodding. "Harry, you're a"

"Lots of people are daddies," Harry said, shrugging. "We wouldn't be here at all if they weren't."

"How can you be so calm about this, boyo?" Seamus demanded. "You're not even out of school yet and here you are with a kid, and—and—who's its mam?"

"Cho Chang," Parvati supplied.

"Whoa," Dean said, gaping. "Damn, but you've got good taste, Harry..."

"Shame the same can't be said for the little woman, eh, Potty?" a cold voice drawled.

Harry sighed. "Malfoy."

"Look, lads, it's Daddy Potty," Draco Malfoy said, eliciting a snicker from his ever-present companions Crabbe and Goyle. "Getting your just desserts now, are you, Potter? I can only begin to imagine the sort of trouble—"

"You know, Malfoy? I don't particularly care what you can imagine." Harry set his coffee cup down and spooned scrambled eggs onto his plate. "In fact, I'm sure I'd rather not know the sort of things your sick, twisted little mind can come up with."

Malfoy's eyes narrowed, and his voice dropped to a low, cold hiss. "Careful, Potter," he spat. "You know what they say about history repeating itself...wouldn't want little Scarhead Junior to grow up being known as The Boy Whose Parents Didn't Live, would we?"

Harry turned slowly around, glancing coolly at Draco. "Worthless words coming from you, Malfoy. Your father and his lord and master haven't been able to kill me yet, and they've been trying for how many years? And d'you think you could do any better?"

Malfoy's eyes hardened, his scowl deepening. Finally, he turned on his heel and stalked back to the Slytherin table, Crabbe and Goyle trailing in behind him.

"Harry..." Ron said quietly.

"He touches either Cho or Little Ced, he dies," Harry said firmly. "It's that simple."

A pall of silence fell over the Gryffindor table at that pronouncement.

* * * * *

Shortly after breakfast, Professor McGonagall cornered Harry in the corridor. "A word in private, Mr Potter," she said briskly and curtly.

With a nervous swallow, Harry followed the head of Gryffindor to her office. He took a seat when McGonagall motioned for him to do so and waited anxiously.

Professor McGonagall sat behind her desk, studying Harry through her square-rimmed spectacles with a tight, unreadable expression. "I've just learned from Professor Dumbledore," she began, "that you are the father of Miss Chang's child."

"Yes, Professor," Harry said thickly. *Am I going to get points off for this? A detention? What?*

McGonagall sighed. "I had hoped I was mistaken, but when I saw the baby's eyes the afternoon he was born, somehow I knew." She pierced Harry with a stern glare. "When precisely did you become aware you had become a father?"

"Last night, at dinner," Harry replied. "Figured it out the same way you and apparently everybody else did, Little Ced's eyes."

"I see," McGonagall said simply, nodding once. "It was impossible not to notice that you came down to breakfast with the Ravenclaws this morning," she added.

Harry flushed. "Er...I spent all night with Cho and the baby. Talking, mostly. We...had a lot to discuss."

"I should say."

"I did have permission to be in the Ravenclaw common room—" Harry began.

"Oh, I know. Professor Dumbledore told me as much when I remarked on it." Once again, she fixed Harry with an unreadable expression. "Are you under the impression you're in some sort of trouble, Mr Potter?"

"Er, well...yeah," Harry admitted, ducking his head. "I mean, this is pretty much the most serious thing that's happened to me at Hogwarts, and that's saying rather a lot."

McGonagall chuckled drily. "Yes, quite." She folded her hands. "You may relax, then, Mr Potter. I simply wished to discuss your...situation, briefly, and to assure you that should you ever need advice or counsel of a personal nature, my door is open." At Harry's dubious expression, her face softened. "Just because I have a reputation for severeness with my students, that doesn't mean I don't care a great deal. And I daresay, I have managed to accumulate a great deal of wisdom as regards teenage emotions and the anxieties that go along with parenthood."

"I, er...thanks, Professor," Harry replied, at a loss.

McGonagall nodded. "Now, I also wanted to discuss Quidditch..."

* * * * *

By the time Harry left Professor McGonagall's office, he had assured her that he was indeed equal to the task of captaining the team, but had opted to select a co-captain to ease his load in case he had to miss practises due to his son, or any other circumstance which might intrude upon his duties—the sort of circumstances which Harry was all too commonly beset with. He had also agreed it was a good idea to fill a full reserve roster, for the good of the team. Lastly, he assured his head of house that, should Cho resume her place as Seeker for Ravenclaw, their personal lives would not affect his performance as her opponent on the pitch.

All in all, he was quite looking forward to returning to Quidditch.

* * * * *

Harry fidgeted nervously in his seat. Saturday morning had at last come, and he, Cho, and the baby were in Dumbledore's office, waiting for the arrival of the Changs.

"Relax, Harry," Cho said soothingly, patting his hand. "It's going to be alright."

Harry sighed and shifted again. "This ideally isn't the way I'd have wanted to meet your parents," he said.

Cho raised an eyebrow. "You'd have wanted to meet my parents before this, then?" she asked.

Harry flushed. "Err—I mean—"

Cho giggled. "I'm only teasing you."

"I believe it is time," Dumbledore said, smiling at the two teenagers. No sooner had he said this than the fire suddenly roared brighter, and two figures stepped out. Harry gave them a quick looking over as they straightened up and brushed off their robes.

Mrs Chang looked very much like Cho, except she was taller (though Harry reckoned he was taller still); her dark hair was cut much shorter and done up in a pair of buns which were covered with white silk. Her robes were blue and had golden patterns woven into them which shifted and undulated as she moved. Her eyes flicked sharply around the room.

Mr Chang was roughly as tall as Harry himself, quite slender, with short dark hair and silver-framed glasses. He wore robes of a shimmering green, with a large golden Chinese symbol embroidered upon the chest. He adjusted his spectacles, gave a small, pointed cough, and stood with his hands behind his back.

"Good morning, Peter, Li Ling," Dumbledore nodded pleasantly to them.

"Good morning, Professor," Mrs Chang replied. She spotted Cho and nodded to her. "Hello, Cho."

"Good morning Mother, Father," Cho replied. Harry shifted in his seat again; something about Mrs Chang reminded him uncomfortably of Professor McGonagall.

"I suppose you're wondering why I've called you here at such a ghastly time on a Saturday," Dumbledore said to the Changs.

"It had crossed our mind," Mr Chang said.

Dumbledore gestured them to armchairs; they remained standing. When he saw they were not going to sit, he gave a small shrug and cleared his throat. "I've called you here today," he began, "because I thought you might wish to meet the father of your daughter's child."

The Changs stiffened. Mrs Chang's eyes immediately fell on Harry, whom she had apparently only just noticed. Harry swallowed nervously and stood, bowing slightly. "Hello," He said, his voice catching. "I'm Harry—Harry Potter. I'm Little Ced's father."

Mr Chang's eyes widened. Mrs Chang stared at Harry, her eyes performing the familiar flick to his forehead.

She proceeded to faint dead away. Mr Chang barely caught her in time, and set her gingerly in a chair.

"Dear? Oh gracious," Mr Chang said. Dumbledore strode forward, dutifully waving a vial of smelling salts under the Chinese witch's nose. A moment later, Mrs Chang stirred, sitting up shakily. "Cho?" she asked shakily. "You—with—Harry Potter?"

"Yes, Mother, Harry is Little Ced's daddy." Cho shifted in her seat, eyeing her mother warily. Apparently, Harry wasn't the only one Mrs Chang made nervous.

Mr Chang sat down across from Harry, staring at him intently. "So. You got our daughter pregnant, then."

Harry nodded. "Y-yes, sir," he said hoarsely.

"You didn't—do anything funny to her, did you?"

"Father!" Cho snapped. "I already told you a hundred times—"

"I never did anything to anyone!" Harry replied hotly. He hastily added, "Err—except, well. Except the obvious, I mean." He flushed and sank low into his seat.

"Young Harry is one of the most honourable, respectable young men in this school," Dumbledore informed the Changs. "I assure you that the behaviour you have implied is not within his character at all."

"I—I apologise," Mr Chang said, nodding to Harry. "It's just—well—you have to understand. Cho wouldn't tell us who the father was for ages—and now we find out it's—it's you—"

Harry sighed. "I understand. I'm used to people believing all sorts of foul rubbish about me."

Cho took Harry's hand, and frowned at her parents. "Harry's taken enough abuse from people without the two of you starting in on him," she said.

Mrs Chang looked taken aback. "Cho, you should remember that you're not in any position to be impertinent just now—"

"I'm in a position to defend the father of my—of our child," she amended, tightening her hold on Harry's hand. "It was my choice to make love to Harry. It was my choice not to tell him, or anyone else, who Little Ced's daddy was. I didn't think things through clearly, I admit, but I would not for an instant change what has happened, or why."

The Changs stared at their daughter, as did Harry.

"Yes, I believe Miss Chang has quite eloquently expressed her feelings toward young Mr Potter," Dumbledore said in an amused tone.

"Yes—well—" Mr Chang coughed. "What about you, Harry? Do you intend to do the honourable thing? It won't be easy, you know, supporting our daughter and your child as well. You'll have to work hard to afford—"

"Cho and the baby will be well taken care of," Harry replied. "I've more than I'll ever conceivably need in my Gringotts vault. My inheritance. We might like to be a bit frugal and not act as though we're wealthy, but..." He trailed off meaningfully.

The Changs seemed satisfied on that point, but Mrs Chang then pressed a further matter. "And—what about—"

"What about what?" Harry asked.

"Surely you intend to marry our daughter promptly," Mrs Chang finished.

Harry flushed, glancing at Cho, who was also quite red. "Err—"

"You don't have to, Harry," she was quick to say. "Just having you helping me raise Little Ced is enough..."

"It's not enough for us," Mrs Chang snapped. "You should bear the full responsibility to both our daughter and your child," she informed Harry crisply.

"It's not that we want to pressure you," Mr Chang said. "It's just that the situation—and you have to think about Cho's reputation. An unwed teenage mother..."

Harry nodded. He knew from his many years with the Muggles that this was the sort of thing that was frowned upon; he reckoned that it was much the same for wizards and witches as it was for the rest of the world.

"If..." He trailed off, swallowing. "If Cho wants to—I mean—"

"Harry?" Cho asked.

Harry turned to her, flushing. "Err—I mean, y'know, I..." He paused. "I've got no problem with the notion of marrying you. If you want to. Marry me, I mean."

Cho turned crimson. "Harry—I—" Smiling, she simply nodded, squeezing Harry's hand tightly; he gave it a squeeze in return.

Dumbledore smiled broadly. "Well. I believe this calls for a celebration!"

* * * * *

The Dursleys were just taking high tea as Harry slid out of the grate. He dusted himself off and stood to face them as they whirled around. Uncle Vernon turned red immediately; Aunt Petunia's mouth pressed into a thin line over her horse-like teeth.

"What are YOU doing here, boy?" Uncle Vernon snarled.

"I'm not here by choice, I assure you," Harry said curtly.

Another whoosh from the flames, and Cho stepped elegantly from the grate, Little Cedric asleep in her arms. The Dursleys turned to stare at her, then back at Harry.

"Hello," Cho said meekly.

"Boy—I was under the impression that all this—this—THIS!" Uncle Vernon roared, his moustache quivering violently, "would be well and done with after you went back to that freak school! The comings and goings and—and—out of the fireplace, in the middle of the afternoon, right in the middle of tea! I ask you."

Another soft whoosh from the fire heralded the arrival of Professor Dumbledore, who calmly brushed out his long silver beard and patted down his robes, then smiled broadly at the Dursleys and bowed.

"Good afternoon," he said pleasantly.

Uncle Vernon looked at him as though he would very much like to inform him that no, it was not a good afternoon at all, and his presence had just made it all the less so. Instead, he narrowed his beady eyes and growled, "And just who the bloody hell are you?"

Dumbledore showed no reaction to Vernon's rudeness except to smile more broadly. "I am Albus Dumbledore," he said politely. "Headmaster of Hogwarts School, pleased to make your acquaintance."

Aunt Petunia sucked in a deep breath. Uncle Vernon's blotchy face paled, mixing a sickly pistachio green with the thick splotches of beet. "You're the—you—" He stammered, pointing at the elderly wizard.

"Yes, quite." Dumbledore straightened up. "We shan't be staying long," he added. "We are simply here to fulfill an obligation."

"What sort of obligation?" Uncle Vernon asked suspiciously, raising one thick eyebrow.

"In our society, much as in yours," Dumbledore began, "it is customary to inform the parents, guardians, or whoever else must be informed, of certain events in the lives of their children whilst under our supervision." Sensing Vernon was about to make a hostile retort, Dumbledore raised a hand placatingly. "I understand that you prefer a certain level of—shall we say, distance and non-participation in Harry's life. However, as I said, it is a duty I am obligated to fulfill at such a time as this."

"The little blighter hasn't gone and gotten himself expelled again, has he?" Vernon asked, narrowing his horrible beady eyes at Harry.

"No, no, nothing of the sort," Dumbledore said, smiling. "Harry's behaviour at school is most exemplary, aside from a few minor curfew infractions. Well, and one...well, one very...human error in judgement, which is the purpose of this visit."

He turned now to Cho, motioning her to step forward. "This is Cho Chang, another Hogwarts student, a year above your nephew. And this," he said, motioning to the sleeping infant cradled in her arms, "is Cedric— Sirius—" he paused, glancing up significantly at the Dursleys. "—Potter."

There was a very long pause, filled with an intensely loud silence.

Uncle Vernon burst out laughing.

Harry scowled; Cho stared at the large man uncertainly. Professor Dumbledore merely raised an eyebrow, smiling as though he would very much like to be let in on the joke.

"Surely you're not suggesting what I think you're suggesting!"

"I believe I am indeed."

Vernon's bellowing laughter deepened. "You mean to say that this—" He pointed a thick finger at Cho, "—went and got in a family way off of that?" Here he pointed at Harry.

Cho scowled. "That's right," she said.

"Well now, if this isn't—Petunia, did you hear?"

Aunt Petunia's mouth was still pressed in a thin, disapproving line. "I heard, Vernon," she replied waspishly. "I'd expect no less from the son of that worthless rotter my sister went off with—"

"Mr and Mrs Dursley, I believe you have made your point," Dumbledore said mildly, though there was a certain sharpness in his blue eyes.

"Alright, so what d'you expect us to do about it?" Uncle Vernon asked now, eyeing Dumbledore beadily.

"I expect you to do absolutely nothing except be aware of the fact that your nephew has become a father," Dumbledore said mildly.

"Is that so? Well, just do us a favour, then," Uncle Vernon sneered at them. "If you two—" here he pointed at Harry and Cho— "manage to get yourselves blown up, I ruddy well thank you not to leave that—" He pointed at the infant cradled in Cho's arms— "on my doorstep."

"Don't worry," Harry said quietly, his eyes flaring ominously. "That's a mistake which will NOT be repeated." With that, he turned on his heel, marched to the Dursleys' fireplace, threw a handful of Floo powder into the grate, snapped "Gryffindor!" into the emerald flames, and disappeared with a soft whoosh.

* * * * *

The Gryffindors who had been studying or relaxing in the common room had begun to scatter the moment a furious Harry emerged from the grate; when Professor Dumbledore himself entered through the portrait hole no less than five minutes later, a quick glance around the room had sent the rest of them scarpering for their dormitories or the library. Once the room was empty save for the two of them, Harry rounded furiously.

"I am NOT going back there again," he insisted.

Dumbledore nodded. "I quite agree."

"I'm serious, I—come again?"

The headmaster sat down, smoothing his robes. "There is no longer a need for you to return to Privet Drive, Harry."

Confused, Harry sat down across from him. "There isn't?"

The aged wizard smiled. "Tell me, you remember what I told you about the protections placed upon you? About the reason you had to return there once a year?"

Harry frowned. "They're my only living blood relatives. It's because of that..." He trailed off, eyes widening as comprehension dawned. "Only...only they're not my only blood relatives, are they? Not anymore."

"Quite right," Dumbledore replied. "There is other...and I daresay it would be far more prudent to transfer the protection to him, not only to remove you from the home of your aunt and uncle, but also because your son has no means of defending himself—but if you are present with him, his protection will be your protection, and vice versa."

Harry nodded. "That makes sense. So..." He swallowed. "So, I'll have to live with Cho and the baby, then? When we're not at Hogwarts."

"That is correct."

The young father swallowed...then grinned. "I can live with that."

Return to top

Title:Untitled Thundercats Project
Content Rating:14+ (Some objectionable content)
Updated:December 31, 2012

A reboot of the classic cartoon, conceived and written more than seven years before the short-lived 2011 reboot.

A sudden loud beep from the navigation console startled him. Looking across the control panel, he began tapping a few keys, bringing up a report from the computer.


      ETA 15 MINUTES

Behind him, the suspension capsules began to hiss, steam escaping from the opening doors. The young man who had been alone for so long shot out of his seat, watching eagerly as his long-dormant friends began to awaken, stumbling blearily out of their capsules.

After years of isolation, Lion-O would soon be surrounded by his fellow Thundercats once again.

* * * * *


Before he knew what was happening, a massive form had tackled him. Stasis-blurred combat instincts were slow to respond, but failed to kick in once his brain realized he wasn't in danger. He was being...hugged?

"Panthro...oh, I've missed you, friend."

He blinked repeatedly, trying to clear the film from his eyes. A red blur atop a cream-colored blur filled his vision. The blur was connected to the voice, and to memory, which was recalled as his mind sluggishly restarted after the long sleep.


"Yeah! Oh, look! Tygra!" The blur disappeared again, accosting another, less distinctive blur some meter or so away.

As his vision cleared, the blur resolved into a tall, muscular Thundercat with a long, bushy mane of red hair that hung down to his waist. He frowned; for some reason, he couldn't recognize this Thundercat. But...that shouldn't be possible, should it? Nobody he didn't know had gotten onto the ship when it left Thundera. "...who...?"

The unknown Thundercat was bouncing around the cabin like a playful kitten, snatching up the awakening Thundercats and crushing them each in turn in a powerful, jubilant hug. Once everyone including Snarf had received this treatment, a baffled and groggy group stood around the stranger, trying to figure out what was going on.

"'s good to see you all again. You don't know how much I've missed you..."

"Who...who are you?" Tygra asked. The strange Thundercat seemed familiar somehow, but he didn't recognize him.

"Where's Lion-O?" Cheetara asked suddenly, whipping her head around. "Where's the king?"

"I didn't see him come out of stasis..." WileyKatt blinked. "Sis, did you?"

"Uh-uh," WileyKitt replied.

"You...what did you do with Lion-O?" Tygra demanded of the stranger.

The mystery Thundercat backed off, eyes wide. "Tygra...don't you recognize me?" He turned to search each of their faces, golden eyes filled with hurt. "Panthro, Cheetara...don't any of you recognize me?"

Snarf took a tentative step forward and sniffed. His eyes widened and his ears flared outward. "Snarf, snarf...Lion-O, is that you?"

Panthro's eyes widened. The Thundercat did bear a resemblance to the boy king, but... On a hunch, he turned to inspect the stasis capsules. The ones which had just opened were still warm, wisps of steam gathered in their bases, readouts displaying time of release, vital signs of the occupants, and other information that a medical technician could use to determine the health of the recent occupants.

One of the capsules was inert, cold. Its readout panel had a steadily burning red malfunction light.

He turned back to the adult Thundercat with the red mane, studied him closely. The clothes were different, the hair was longer, the muscles were new, but the eyes, the face, the boyish demeanor...

" is you, isn't it?"

"What?" Tygra stared. "How can this be Lion-O?"

"Lion-O is our age..." WileyKitt protested.

"Smells like Lion-O snarf snarf..."

The red-maned Thundercat looked at his friends. "I am Lion-O," he assured them. "I...I guess I should have realized you wouldn't recognize me. I forget just how long it's been..."

"What happened? How...?" Cheetara looked back and forth between Lion-O, Panthro, and Tygra, searching for an explanation.

Panthro provided it. "Look here...this is the stasis capsule Lion-O was in."

"A malfunction?" Tygra asked.

The dark blue Thundercat nodded. "This capsule's been open a long time, I'd say." Looking back at Lion-O, he added, "A very long time."

The red-maned king looked down. "Yeah, it's been a long time alright."

Tygra moved over to the console and began calling up the flight log, scrolling through for malfunction reports. After a moment, he found it. "Looks like..six years. Capsule damaged when a small meteor hit the ship during an acceleration cycle. It ejected him just in time, before the stasis system shut down completely."

"Six...years?" Snarf asked.

"You've been awake and all alone out here for six years, Lion-O?" WileyKatt asked.

The king nodded. "I was beginning to get worried...the food rations are running low, and some of the systems need maintenance I can't provide. I've tried to learn everything I could about the ship, but I just can't understand it all, even with all the time I've had to figure it out."

"Well, you've certainly been keeping yourself...busy," Cheetara commented, eyes roving the young king's muscular frame. She purred softly in appreciation, causing Lion-O to blush.

* * * * *

The salamander arched a smooth-skinned brow at the shrouded figure. "And why, pray tell, should we believe that a withered, decrepit...THING such as yourself would be capable of offering us anything we'd be interested in?"

Dull red eyes flashed with anger from within the tattered hood of the frayed scarlet cloak. "Why don't I give you a...demonstration."

The stale, musty air in the crypt suddenly thickened, an aura of blackness gathering. The mutants took an involuntary step back.

The decayed creature stood before the oily, bubbling pool in the center of the crypt, raising its bony, bandage-wrapped hands. Dust flaked from its dried-out bluish-grey skin. The thing's raspy voice suddenly took on a stronger timbre, echoing through the chamber with unholy strength.

"Ancient spirits of evil..."

The eyes of the animalistic statues arrayed around the tomb began to glow, an electric charge filling the air as power...enormous, burning power flowed from the great idols. The mutants' heads whipped about uneasily, trying to discern what was going on.

"Transform this decayed form..."

The black mass of air pressed down suddenly, wrapping itself around the shrouded mummy; the electric tingle of the unholy power flowing from the statues was tangible, prickling across smooth skin and raising hair and feathers.


The mummified figure suddenly rose into the air on a wave of pure evil, the power of the ancient idols surging into it; bandages exploded outward and cloth shredded as the figure began to grow and change. Slythe hissed; Monkian backpedaled away, covering his eyes and whooping. Vultureman and Jackalman stood their ground, though their eyes darted about warily.

At length, the walking corpse settled to the ground...significantly changed. No longer small and withered, Mumm-Ra stood tall and powerful; the dusty, decayed blue-grey skin now stretched taut over hard muscles. Wraps of ash-grey bandage covered the massive being's wrists and calves; sharp black talons tipped his hands and feet. The tattered remains of the cloak fluttered behind him as a cape; black trunks and a tarnished bronze helmet with ebony horns carved in the shape of hissing snakes made up the rest of Mumm-Ra's wardrobe. His jewel-like red eyes burned with intense hatred and menace, accentuated by his hideous, fanged maw.

Most disturbing was the emblem on Mumm-Ra's chest. An irregular, angry red circle blazed over where a man's heart would be, pulsing as though in time with a heartbeat. Twin black snakes coiled within the circle, twisting around one another endlessly, hissing and snapping at one another, yet unable to strike each other. As Mumm-Ra roared, flexing and stretching his newly transformed body, the eyes of the hissing snakes locked briefly on the mutants, and their jaws snapped; the group from Plundarr felt a strike of terror, as though their very hearts had almost been subject to a fatal dose of venom.

"Now," Mumm-Ra said, heedless of the exchange, "allow me to show you why it would be in your best interests to agree to serve Mumm-Ra..."

Return to top

Title:Love Doll
Series:Neon Genesis Evangelion
Content Rating:18+ (EXTREMELY mature content!)
Updated:December 31, 2012

Asuka decides to molest Rei out of boredom.

Sohryu Asuka Langley growled in frustration and tossed aside the magazine she'd already read twice. Picking herself up off the floor, she walked into her room and began rooting around in her schoolbag, wondering if perhaps she should read ahead a bit for her classes. Five minutes of staring at boring text, plus remembering that she was on break, quickly dissuaded her of that notion, and she began pacing the apartment, trying to find something interesting to do.

Things had been too quiet lately. Misato had taken a trip to one of the other NERV branches, Shinji was visiting the relatives he'd been living with most of his life, Kaji hadn't been around lately...things were just plain dull. School wasn't even an option to relieve the boredom at present, and even the standard routine of synch tests was beginning to drag.

Asuka considered briefly investigating Shinji's room for something to read, do, or look at. However, she just as quickly decided that she'd probably be even more bored if she started poking around in his life, and moved on to Misato's room. *If anything, I'll find something worth looking at in here.*

Ten minutes later, Asuka emerged from Misato's room, blushing furiously. *I never knew Misato was into...into...ewww.* She stalked into the kitchen, remembered the distinct lack of anything remotely edible, and sighed. Even eating her way out of boredom wasn't an option.

The phone rang. Asuka picked it up, vaguely hoping it was something interesting...Kaji calling her for a date, Hikari wanting to go shopping, an Angel attack...anything to alleviate the boredom. "Hallo?"

//dr. akagi has asked that we come in today to run a new series of tests. please be at headquarters in thirty minutes.// *Click.*

Asuka growled several swear words in German, slamming the phone down with almost enough force to crack the plastic. *Stupid Wonder Girl. Couldn't she at least try to make small talk? What is WRONG with her!?* Sighing, she decided she might as well get this over with, and after a quick change of clothes, Asuka left for NERV.

* * * * *

The synch tests were, predictably, boring. As the only two available pilots stripped down and changed into their plugsuits, Asuka paused for a moment to secretly check out her cold, lifeless teammate. *It's not fair,* she told herself, *that a body like that had to be wasted on a wind-up doll who wouldn't even know what to do with it.*

During the actual test, Asuka was mostly operating on auto-pilot, not bothering to concentrate, as her mind was mostly occupied by ways to relieve her boredom. The only mildly interesting thing she'd seen all day was Misato's bedroom. She nearly lost her synch ratio as she thought about that particularly ecchi piece of junk. She had no idea Misato was into that at all. Sure, she herself had thought about it once or twice...what girl hadn't? Not that she'd ever admit it, of course, and she certainly wouldn't experiment. There'd be no way she could live it down if someone caught her at it, not to mention the lack of people she could ask to try it...with...her...


A plan began to form in Asuka's mind, even as Ritsuko announced the end of the test and the two pilots emerged from the plugs. As she changed out of her plugsuit, she glanced over at the pale, emotionless First Child. Okay, so maybe it was a bit...weird...but it was something different, anyway, and after all...who would doll-girl tell about it? Ikari? Even Rei wouldn't be likely to tell him something like that.

Asuka grinned to herself. This could

* * * * *

Rei folded her plugsuit neatly into her locker, closed it, and turned to leave.

"Saaaaay, Rei..." a perky voice piped up from nearby.

Not turning to acknowledge her fellow pilot, the First Child paused only to slip on her shoes. "hai?"

"I was just know, we don't talk much...we don't really get to know each other, you know? You come in, you do your thing here, you go back to your apartment..."

"that is correct," Rei replied simply, and began walking away.

Asuka trailed in behind her, matching the pale girl's footsteps precisely. "Well, I was thinking...Misato's gone, Shinji's gone, there's nothing to do...why don't you come over to my place tonight? We can talk, get to know each other...y'know, have a girls' night!"

"for what reason?" Rei asked, curiosity nonexistent in her flat tones.

"'s fun! It's different! It's something to do other than sit around doing...whatever you usually do," Asuka insisted.

Rei paused briefly. "what i usually do satisfies me," she decided, and continued walking.

Asuka fought to rein in her frustration. This wasn't going as well as she had planned. "Come on, Rei...don't you ever want anything more? Don't you ever get bored? Live a little! What would it hurt for one night?"

Rei paused again, seeming a bit indecisive. At length, she turned to face Asuka. "very well," she said. She altered her course, headed in the direction of the other girl's apartment. Asuka fell in step behind her once again, cheering silently at this small victory.

* * * * *

As the girls walked through the door, Asuka stretched. "I don't know about you," she commented, "but I could use a good soak in the furo." She turned to Rei. "Come on, let's hit the bath."

Rei trailed in behind the other girl and quickly, methodically removed her clothing and folded it neatly on top of the hamper, next to Asuka's clothes. Asuka was already seated upon a stool, filling a wash bucket with cold water. "Brrr," she shivered as the water cascaded down her bare shoulders, flowing in rivulets to the small of her back. Beside her, Rei did likewise, barely reacting to the chill of the water.

*Okay...let's see just how lifeless Wonder Girl really is.* Asuka slid off her stool and knelt behind Rei, reaching past the pale girl to grab some soap. As she did so, she pressed her front firmly against Rei's back. "I'll wash your back for you," Asuka said.

Rei sat still, presenting her back to Asuka, seemingly oblivious to the contact. Asuka began slowly rubbing the soap against the pale, wet skin of Rei's back, until a thin layer of lather extended from the nape of her neck to the base of her spine. Setting aside the soap, she began kneading the supple flesh with her fingers, the slippery lather making it difficult to get a good grip.

Once this was done, Rei began to wash the rest of her body. As she methodically soaped her breasts, Asuka stopped her. "Don't you know the right way to do that?" Asuka asked rather sharply.

Rei blinked in response. Asuka gave a mock growl of irritation and took the soap from Rei's hands. "Here, let me show you." Asuka began stroking the soap across Rei's skin, then set it aside and seized the pale girl's breasts with her bare hands. Slowly, she began massaging them, lather and soft flesh squeezing between her fingers as she worked.

Rei blinked more rapidly. A faint tinge of pink crept onto her skin.

After a few moments, Asuka reclaimed the soap and lathered the pale girl's body from the midriff down to her thighs. As she approached Rei's sex with the soap, she smiled to herself. Pressing slightly harder than necessary, Asuka rubbed the soap over the sensitive area in slow, deliberate up-and-down motions. She heard a faint gasp from Rei as the pale girl drew in a sharp breath. *So, she does feel...* Glancing at Rei's face out of the corner of her eye, Asuka noted the blush that had dominated her features. Setting the soap aside once more, she began working the lather from the soap into Rei's thighs, moving slowly up to her midriff, leaving the most important part for last. Finally, her hand landed upon Rei's womanhood, pressing firmly, middle finger almost but not quite breaching Rei's slit. Rei began to tremble very slightly.

Asuka decided enough was enough, and picked up the rinse bucket, filling it with cold water. She poured the water over Rei's breasts first, letting it trickle down her body, carrying away the lather. Another bucket of water was dumped mischeviously in Rei's lap, eliciting a rather loud gasp from the pale girl as the cold wave crashed against her crotch. Sitting on the stool beside Rei, Asuka said, "Okay, your turn." Noting Rei's uncomprehending gaze, she smirked. "Your turn to wash me. Do exactly what I just did."

Rei moved behind Asuka, picking up the soap. She first washed the redhead's back, then moved around and, hesitantly at first, began lathering her breasts. Asuka stifled a sound of pleasure as Rei mimicked her earlier actions precisely, kneading and massaging her breasts with expert skill. A few moments later, she could not stop herself from gasping out loud as the same attention she had earlier applied to Rei's sex was given to her own. *Wonder Girl's a quick study,* she thought to herself as her own body began tingling, heat building up in her nether regions.

Asuka practically yelped when the icy cold rinse water flowed over her crotch. Once she regained control of herself, she stood. "You did a good job, Rei," she said as she strode over to the furo. Blushing slightly for some reason not entirely known to herself, Rei joined the redhead in the furo.

Return to top

Title:There Were Ten Of Them
Genre:Dark, Hentai
Content Rating:18+ (EXTREMELY mature content!)
Updated:December 31, 2012

Ranma must find and bring to justice a group of boys who brutally gang-raped Nabiki.

There were ten of them.

Akane could only stare in horror, face white with shock, as the glossy photograph slipped numbly through her fingers to land on the pile of similar prints on the table.

The envelope had been left inside the gate, with no markings, no addressee listed. Just a blank yellow envelope, which Akane had brought in and opened since she happened to be the only one home at the time.

The horror within explained her elder sister's recent listlessness and unresponsive behavior, as well as the screaming, raging fit in which she had destroyed all of her cameras, all of her film, all of her recording devices, and every last negative and print of every picture she had ever taken. For ten horrible minutes, Nabiki had raged throughout the house like a tornado; after that, she had retreated to her room, curled up on her bed, and would not speak to anyone.

And now, Akane knew why.

She could only stand one more glimpse of the photos lying on the table before she ran to the toilet to be violently ill.

There were ten of them.

* * * * *

There were ten of them.

"Now, now, boys...I don't like the hostility I'm sensing here..."

"Oh, there's no hostility. We're all here to do a little friendly business with you."

"Look, if it's pictures of Akane or Ranma you're after, Kunou-chan bought out the last I had—"

"Naw, we ain't interested in that. We wanna see the pictures of you."

"...eeeexcuse me?"

"You heard me. What, you sell out your own sister, but you're too chickenshit to put a price on your own frigid little cunt?"

", I'm flattered, really, but—"

"But what? You're too good to whore yourself out like you whore out your little sister?"

"I don't 'whore' Akane out. I just..."

"Yeah yeah, save it for the judge. Well if you ain't got pictures of yourself, we're gonna make some, ain't we boys? An' they're gonna be a lot hotter than the ones you've been sellin'."

There were ten of them.

* * * * *

"There were ten of them."

Saotome Ranma glared around the schoolyard, cold, murderous fury in his eyes. "Ten of you bastards did something unforgiveable to Nabiki. As soon as I find out who you are, every last one of you is going to pay."

The assembled student body looked around at each other in confusion. Tendou Nabiki had been missing for days, and nobody knew what had happened to her. Her friends had called upon her at home, only to be told by her elder sister Kasumi that she was unwell and did not wish to be disturbed. There had been a haunted, somewhat angry look in the gentle woman's eyes.

"I can make it so every last damn guy here won't ever even wanna LOOK at a girl again," Ranma threatened. "If you're one of them, better fess up before I REALLY get pissed. If you know anything about the guys, best tell me before I lose my temper. I want every last son of a bitch that hurt Nabiki, and I want them by sundown.

"There were ten of them."

Return to top

The images and fanworks on this site are derived from intellectual property belonging to various artists and corporate entities in Asia, North America, and Europe and are used without permission. No profit or claim of ownership is intended or received from these works; they are merely the appreciative and humble musings of a writer too crappy to come up with his own stuff. Any non-derivative works on this site are copyright 1997-2018 Mythril Moth. Do not reuse or hotlink content on this site without direct permission from the site owner.


Since 12/11/12