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A Ranma ½ fan fiction story
by Ukyou Kuonji

Disclaimer: Ranma ½ and its characters and settings belong to Rumiko Takahashi, Shogakukan, Kitty, and Viz Video.

Kasumi set beefbowls down in front of her father and Mr. Saotome. Ranma licked his lips. His favorite meal, too! He was looking forward to it, as it had been a rough day. He'd been stuck in this body for nearly a month, and that meant he was still fighting off the guys trying to hit on him — the perverts! Didn't they know who he was? Well, apart from Kuno, that is. He was starting to sympathize with Akane for what she'd had to go through before he arrived… in fact, he had begun to wonder why she wasn't a bit more grateful to him for having put a halt to it.

And this pain in his gut wouldn't go away, either. Kasumi had given him a couple of painkillers when he'd complained about it after school today (even let him keep the bottle, in fact), and they'd helped some, but the knots were once again starting to form in his stomach (or was it a little lower than that?). He hoped it was just hunger pangs, and once again, he smiled in anticipation of Kasumi's peerless cooking. He watched hungrily as she set down bowls for Akane and Nabiki… couldn't she hurry this up? Even if he was stuck in this girl's body, he was a growing boy, with an appetite to match. Why was she serving him last?

Finally, she came out from the kitchen with another bowl and a black lacquer box, somewhat larger than a bento box. She set the bowl in front of her place, and the box in front of Ranma-chan. Ranma looked very perplexed, and a bit disappointed — it didn't look like a beefbowl. Kasumi explained, "This is a special day for you, Ranma-chan, and as such, I've prepared a special meal for you."

Special… for him? Well, hey… if it's Kasumi's, it's bound to be good in any case. He lifted the lid off the box. The entire box was covered with an even layer of rice, and in the center, there was a large circle of red beans. It looked very much like the Japanese flag.

Ranma-chan picked at the contents of the box carefully, so as not to disturb the design Kasumi had made. "Uh, Kasumi… it's really very pretty, but… where's the meat?"

Kasumi sat down, smiling. "Oh, there's no meat in this dish."

"Any particular reason?" An note of irritation began to creep into Ranma-chan's voice.

"Well," Kasumi began, either ignoring or not noticing Ranma-chan's annoyance, "it's just the traditional meal to serve a young girl on this occasion. You and I need to have a woman-to-woman chat about this…"

At this, the two younger Tendo girls paused and looked intently at Ranma-chan's meal. Then they looked at each other, and a silent thought passed between them. Kasumi was about to give Ranma-chan "The Talk," and she appeared to have no idea the size of the bomb she was about to set off. Now would be a good time to make themselves scarce.

"Uh, Kasumi-oneechan…"

"Yes, Akane?"

"If it's all the same to you, Nabiki and I have some studying to do. On her computer. Right, Nabiki?"

"Huh? Yeah, yeah, sure."

"Right. So do you mind if we eat upstairs?"

"Couldn't this wait, Akane? This is a very important day for Ranma-chan, you know, and maybe she'd like your support during this time. After all, she's your—"

Akane cut her off. "Yeah, I know, but I've really got to study right away. There's… there's this big test coming up tomorrow, and I need to do real well on it."

Kasumi sighed. "All right, then. You study hard."

"Thanks, oneechan! C'mon, Nabiki." And they left the table, bowls in hand.

"Don't spill in your sister's room!" Kasumi called after them.

As he watched the two of them leave, Soun Tendo also got the hint. "Erm… I think Saotome-kun and I will retire to the patio for a game of shogi… won't we, Saotome-kun?" He stood up and strode off.

The panda held up a sign [Hang on a moment, Tendo-kun. I'm not finished yet] He picked up his bowl and simply poured the remaining contents down his gullet. [Okay, let's go]

"But father… you haven't finished your meal yet, either!"

[I'll take care of that, my dear] And the panda picked up Soun's bowl and repeated the process.

From the patio, Mr. Tendo could hear what his friend was doing to what was left of his meal, and was none too happy about it. Not just because he was losing what was his, but because that gluttonous panda wasn't getting away from the conversation Kasumi was about to have with Ranma-chan. He wanted no part in that, and didn't relish rescuing his friend from what might happen. He poked his head into the dining area and hissed angrily at his friend: "Saotome!"

The panda got up and lumbered off to the patio, waving another sign. [Hey, YOU had left the table…]

"That's not the point…" Mr. Tendo's voice drifted off as the older men headed for their evening game. Ranma-chan, after staring off in the direction they had gone, now turned to Kasumi.

"Okay, I give up. What was all that about, anyway? And what's with this food, hm? You say it's some kind of tradition…?"

"That's right. When I was nine years old, just before Mama took sick, she fixed this meal for me, and spent the evening explaining…" her voice trailed off as she searched for the words, "the facts of life to me."

"You were nine years old? Wow, that's early. I didn't learn much about it until I started going to high school regularly up here."

"Some junior high schools teach that sort of thing, too…"

"Yeah, I guess. Mine didn't. But then, it was an all-boys school. Maybe they didn't figure it was that important if we weren't gonna mix with girls that regularly. But you said you were nine? That's even before junior high. Why so soon?"

"Well…" Kasumi fidgeted a bit. She hadn't meant to put herself on the spot like this. Still it was a question that deserved an answer. "When I was nine, I started getting… sore… here…" she touched her chest. "And then, one day, I started to… bleed…

"I thought something was wrong with me. I went running to the school nurse in hysterics. I really thought I was dying or something. She just gave me one of these," and she held up another one of those painkillers she had given him earlier that day, "and sent me home with a note for my mother. Mama read the note, and that night, she fixed me this dish, explaining about the differences between men," and she poked at the rice, "and women," and at the red beans, "and the changes we undergo in becoming one or the other. She explained that menarche — that was what she called what I was going through — was just another step in becoming a woman, and that it was something to celebrate… and explain a bit."

"Explain what?"

Kasumi took a deep breath. "How much do you know about being a woman, Ranma-chan?"

Ranma-chan smirked. "More than most men, that's for sure."

Kasumi sighed. This was going to be harder than she had thought it would be. "No, I mean do you realize what you're going through? You know, the cramps, the bleeding…"

"Bleeding? What're you talking about, Kasumi?"

Kasumi's expression went stern, a no-nonsense, don't-play-dumb look, and Ranma-chan flinched at the sight. "Ranma… while you were taking your cold-water bath, I washed your clothes. Your boxer shorts were bloody. You're going to need a napkin for the next day or so."

"A napkin?"

Another sigh. I have to spell it out for him, don't I? "A sanitary pad, Ranma. You're having your first period."

"I'm WHAT?!"

"It's a natural thing, Ranma. It happens to every girl; it's just that it hadn't happened to you before since you'd never stayed a girl long enough. You see, every month or so, we have an egg travel down from the ovary to the uterus, and there it sits, waiting to be fertilized and become a new human being. After a month, the body gives up on it, eliminates the old egg, and starts the cycle over. You see, this just means that you have become a full-fledged, fertile female."

Ranma-chan's eyes widened in horror, and a howl of anguish escaped from her lips. With tears streaming from her face, she got up and bolted from the house.

"I'd say he took that pretty well." A sardonic tone of voice preceded Nabiki's re-entrance into the dining room. "Anyway, sis, congratulations… for once in your life, I imagine you've said too much."
"Oh! Nabiki! Are you two done studying, then?"

Nabiki facefaulted.

Ranma-chan wasn't even looking where he was going. His eyes were closed tightly, as he tried to shut out the pain and the humiliation of all this. That goddam old hag! This was all her fault!

Panting, he rested against a light pole. He winced as his gut began to screw up inside of him. Thank heavens Kasumi had given him the whole bottle of painkillers — he sure as hell needed one right now. He pulled it out of his pocket and popped a few of the pills in his mouth. Then he decided to take a good look at the bottle.

Midol. He'd been taking Midol. Dammit, he really was having a period. Next thing, he'd be bleeding something fierce all over the place… in fact, as he stood there, motionlessly staring at the bottle, he could feel a warm tickle running down his leg. He twitched his left foot as a red pool began to form under it… it looked like Kasumi was right about that pad business. He cursed under his breath. If only the Tokyo Grandpa Point could work again! If only he could get his hands on that Phoenix Pill! If only…

"Having fun, sonny?"

She wasn't carrying it right now, but it didn't matter to Ranma. If only he could get his hands on her, he'd feel a lot better, even if it didn't solve his problem just yet. He charged at her. "You goddam ghoul! Look what you've done to me!"

Cologne eluded his grasp easily, landing on his head. "Oh, I knew it was going to happen sooner or later. Maybe it'll give you a better appreciation for the things we women deal with all of our lives. Then again, it may just give you the extra push to finally agree to marry your rightful bride, Shampoo."

Ranma growled as he reached for the monkey on his back. "Shampoo ain't my rightful bride, and never will be!"

"Too bad, son-in-law." Cologne leaped from Ranma's back, somersaulted in mid-air, and landed at his feet. "Then you'd better stock up on Kotex, because you're going to endure a lot of this in the future." She poked him with her staff, once between the breasts and once on each nipple. "I just wanted to check and see if you'd changed your mind before Shampoo and I go on vacation. It'll give you some time to think about whether you want to stay female or not." The old crone hopped away, casually whistling a tune. The song was vaguely familiar, and Ranma-chan stood there, trying to recognize it.

"You Make Me Feel… Like a… Na-tu-ral Woman…"

Ranma-chan growled. How dare she taunt him like that! He knew the old ghoul was goading him, but an insult like that just could not go unanswered.

Cologne turned around to face him once again as he charged, yelling all the way. She just stared, immobile, as he ran toward her. When he got within twenty yards, she held up a hand, and began lowering one finger at a time. Five… four… three… two… one…

Her hand closed in a fist, and she thrust it as the rampaging girl. It didn't connect — Ranma-chan was still a few yards off — but it stopped Ranma cold. The young girl froze, tottered, and fell face down into the street.

Cologne laughed as she turned and hopped away. "I'll send you a postcard, son-in-law!"

Momentarily paralyzed from the neck down, Ranma-chan could only snarl at the ancient Amazon's receding form. So she was going on a vacation, was she? Well, he'd follow her… he'd track her down; seashore or ski slope, he'd be right behind her. And when he caught her, he'd make her life a living hell, in exchange for what she was putting him through.

He felt the warmth pooling around his groin as he growled: "I'm gonna get you for this, you old ghoul!"


Author's notes: Well…

This has been one of those Athena-type stories, that spring fully grown from one's mind. I don't think I need to tell you what brought it on. My apologies to those that may have been offended, but hey… this is one of those things nobody seems to think about that Ranma-chan might have to deal with (but IMHO, only if he stays a girl for 28 days or so…)

Oh, and as for the traditional beans and rice, I am led to understand that this is common; although now that I think about it, I suspect that they'd be arranged on a round plate in the yin-yang pattern (red signifies female-yin, and white male-yang. I leave it to the hentai or clinically-minded among us to ascertain why those colors are used — I have my own suspicions)

Once again, thanks for reading, and I'd love to hear any C&C you might have.

Itsu mo,
Ucchan ^_^

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