Dragon Lady of Macross
Written By Calamity Cordite
Developed by Calamity Cordite and James R. Axelrad
This Story will be a Robotech/Ranma 1/2 x-over. I have to say that while the idea plagued me for quite some time, the two mix about as well as oil and water. The reason for this is that Robotech is pretty much exclusively technology based. There is no precedent for magic in it, so bringing in Ranma, who just isn't Ranma without a Nyannichaun curse, sort of clashes with the Robotech Universe. I did it anyway, as my muse dictated.
While I will try to adhere to the Robotech Macross Saga timeline, I haven't been very religious about the rest of the details of the Robotech Universe. Things that were changed were done to increase that realism, particularly in reference to the military. I have converted the RDF command structure to a Naval model structure (except for the Marines). The ground units will be called Marines, as they are based on a Naval vessel. The Veritech squadrons will start out in the traditional four plane flight format with two or more flights forming a squadron. They will go to a three plane flight later in the story, although some squadrons will still use the four plane format.
Other changes were made to update the Robotech Universe to a more modern model, ala the SciFi Channel's update of Battlestar Galactica. Namely, there will be female combat pilots from the very beginning. This will also be an enlightened military in which sexual preference doesn't cause everyone to freak out. WARNING: Lesbianism ahead!
A word on clichés...the Ranma universe is one of the most popular universes to write fan fiction in. That means that after you read about the first ten or so stories, everything is cliché afterward. The challenge is to put the clichés together in an original way. I hope I have done that here, but given the limitations of the Robotech Timeline, it's very difficult to do something totally original. All I can say is that I took the same set of situations from the Robotech canon, that others have written about before, and tried to put a unique spin on them. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't. Hopefully the over all story made up for the times it didn't.
The Ranma in this story is NOT the canon Ranma. This Ranma was changed by the events surrounding the crash of the SDF-1 on Earth. This was a huge wake up call for him and he made choices about where he wanted his life to go early on. He is more educated than the canon version and knows how to use his brain. He is also more pragmatic that the canon. Ranma is 23 when this story begins and as such is much more mature. What does this mean? OOC! Consider yourself warned and don't whine about it. *wink*
This story contains very harsh language and citrusy scenes. If such things offend you, don't read it.
And lastly, but not leastly *grin*, I don't own Ranma or Robotech. They belong to their respective copyright holders as do the various song lyrics that appear in potions of the story. I used it all without permission for non-profit non-monetary purposes. It is meant as a tribute to the original creators of these brilliant anime.
As always, I wrote this story for my enjoyment and am sharing it with you for yours. Comments are welcome. If you want a reply, leave an email address or email me directly. It also bears mentioning that this story is for all intents and purposes complete in its entirety. The chapters (30 of them) will be posted as they come out of final proofing. Changes to the story itself will be unlikely, but if you wish to point out errors in chronology, grammar, or typos, they would be welcome.
Lieutenant Ranma Saotome stared pensively out the window of the transport aircraft as it orbited Macross Island, awaiting clearance for approach. She absently played with the crimson end of her French braid as she got her first view of the object that put her life on a very different path over 8 years ago.
When the Visitor, now called the SDF-1 crashed on Earth those many years ago, it had been during one of Ranma's short periods of attendance in school. That event was all anyone was talking about, be they students or teachers, and it was also the thing that caused Ranma to realize that there was more to life than just martial arts, in spite of what his father said. This was something Ranma wanted to be a part of, maybe even going out into space. He had talked to his teachers about it at the time and one thing became clear, if he wanted to do anything, he would have to get an education. So he made arrangements to continue his education via correspondence when his father eventually decided that they needed to be back out on the road. He convinced Genma to allow his studies by telling him it would keep the authorities off their backs for Ranma not being in school. What he didn't say is that he was doing much more than basic studies. He also didn't tell the old fool the real reason why he was determined to finish his education.
Ranma applied his genius, heretofore only used in learning new martial arts techniques, to his studies and completed his college preparatory high school education by the end of his fifteenth year. Then his world was shattered.
It was early June of 2003 when, after traveling around China for a couple of years learning whatever martial arts techniques he could by day and studying a few hours by night, the old man led them to the accursed place called Jusenkyo. Ranma, able to read Mandarin reasonably well by this point, knew the springs were supposed to be cursed but being firmly grounded in science from his studies, discounted the curses as something that didn't exist. It was something he would learn to regret.
When he and his father left Jusenkyo, it was as a petite redheaded girl and a fat panda bear. To make matters worse, while warm water would change his father back, the water required to change Ranma back to birth form was required to be just below boiling, causing painful burns in the process. A small rain shower as they left the valley of the Springs of Sorrow ensured that Ranma would remain in female form for the foreseeable future.
And thus they came to the village of the Amazons where the guide said they might find more information on the curses. The guide told them they were lucky that they had arrived on the day of the village tournament. Unfortunately, when Genma is involved, ill luck seemed to be the only luck they had. As Ranma watched the fighters and talked to the guide, Genma had spied a table laden with food and had begun to chow down. When Ranma glanced around for the panda, she saw her father at a table clearly labeled 'First Prize'. Ranma rolled her eyes at the old man's stupidity, rapidly becoming disgusted with the man. In a state of depression already because of the curse and the negative impact it would have on the future she had worked so hard on, she decided, this time the old man could deal with his own mess. She wasn't going to allow him to put it off on her anymore. As the purple haired winner of the tournament leaped down from the log and attempted to brain the fat panda, causing the coward to run and hide behind Ranma, Ranma decided it was time to break away from the old moron.
The purple haired girl stalked up to Ranma and stood menacingly before her.
"Is this your panda who was eating my prize?" the girl demanded. Ranma sighed.
"Is not panda," Ranma said in broken Mandarin. "Is man with Jusenkyo curse. Get hot water and girl see proof. Girl fight with him. Ranma not have anything to do with it." Ranma stepped aside from in front of the panda and the other girl fixed the beast with a glare.
"Seize him!" she yelled and several of the warrior women grabbed the panda.
Ranma's words were soon confirmed as hot water returned the old fool to his birth form. The purple haired girl approached him and glared at him angrily.
"Why did you eat my prize, foolish male?" she demanded, lifting a bonbori menacingly.
"(She want know why Mister Customer eat her prize for winning tournament)," the guide translated in broken Japanese for Genma.
"(Prize, huh)?" Genma said thoughfully, then brightened as an idea came to him. "(Boy, challenge her for the prize then it will be mine...er...ours and there won't be a problem)." The guide was about to translate for the girl, but Ranma's grip on his arm stopped him. Ranma glared at her father, furious that he had tried to involve her in this. She then smirked wickedly before turning to the girl.
"Fat panda-man say is just weak womans," Ranma told the purple haired girl. "Say it not matter, he take whatever want and no weak womans stop him." An angry murmur ran through the gathered crowd and Genma began to sweat under the hostile glares being directed at him.
"Take this trash away," the purple haired girl commanded. "He will be judged and punished for his crimes against the Amazons."
Genma was knocked unconscious and carried off.
"You no kill him, yes?" Ranma asked the girl.
"Most likely not," the girl said. "He will probably be sentenced to be whipped for his offences."
"Is good then," Ranma said relieved. "Ranma not like old fool, but not want to see die."
"I am called Xian Pu. It is traditional that the winner of the tournament share her feast with the other warriors of the village," the girl said. "You have the look of a warrior and you also look as though you have traveled far. Would you like to share the feast with us?"
"Ranma hasn't eaten in over a day," Ranma said. "Ranma is in Xian Pu's debt for generosity. Ranma will join you for you feast and then would ask if it be possible to obtain some supplies for journey home to Japan."
During the journey home to Japan, Ranma thought long and hard about what would become of her dream now that she had the curse. She knew that most organizations would be hesitant to take her because of the weirdness of the curse and special considerations her gender changing would bring. Her dream of going into space was now beyond her reach, as a man anyway. She realized given the temperature of the water required to change her back to male that she could conceivably hide the curse if she lived as a female. As it was, living as female was now the only way for her to live anything like a normal life.
The Amazon's had told her that there was no cure for a Jusenkyo curse. They considered her to be blessed because the springs found her worthy of being a woman. Ranma made allowances for their bias and found that she was indeed blessed to an extent. She could have changed into something not human like her father, or worse, something not human and helpless, like a cat or a pig. That would have eliminated any possibility of achieving the dream she had worked so hard for. As it was, all she had to do was decide if pursuing her dream was worth giving up her manhood indefinitely.
She was realistic enough to know that part of said manhood was already gone. She wasn't as uncomfortable as a female as she thought she should be. Her mind told her this body was wrong, that she was a man, but it didn't feel wrong. It didn't feel any different to her than when she was male. The Amazons had told her that the reason for this was that the curse came with the instincts native to the body received. While it didn't change a person's mind or the type of being they were attracted to, it did come with a sort of buffer, in the form of instincts, that would allow a person to live with the new form and not go insane from the sense of wrongness.
By the time she reached the shores of her homeland, she had decided in her typical fashion that she wouldn't allow the curse to stop her from achieving her dream. Researching the matter she determined that the best place to start working toward her goal was the newly formed RDF Academy. She managed to get signed up with a full scholarship with the provision that she join the UNEDF as a pilot upon graduation.
So it was, Ranma Saotome found herself in America, attending a prestigious military academy as a female student in the aeronautical program.
Ranma was shaken out of her reverie by a familiar voice coming in from Macross ATC.
"Macorss ATC, Pacific 5-8 heavy, you are cleared to begin your approach to runway 27 right. After rollout, proceed to ramp zero-niner south for off loading."
"Pacific 5-8 heavy, Macross ATC, Roger," the pilot said as he and the co-pilot began to put the large transport aircraft into landing configuration while Ranma looking on with professional interest from the observer's seat.
"Don't worry, Lieutenant," the co-pilot grinned at her after noticing her watching. "We'll have you on the ground in no time and you'll be back up here with your own set of controls soon." Ranma smiled vaguely at him as he turned back to his job.
'That sounded like Lisa Hayes on the ATC,' Ranma thought. 'I haven't seen her in a long time.' Her mind drifted back to the time when she met Lisa Hayes while the flight crew continued with their approach.
Ranma found that, for all that she was comfortable living in her female form, she was not comfortable socializing in that form. Not only did she not have any interest in men, but she also felt like she was somehow being vaguely dishonest. So she largely kept to herself and devoted herself to her studies, pursuing a grueling course load that having any sort of social life wouldn't have allowed for. It was this that allowed her to graduate with honors after only two and a half years.
Not that she never had any friends. She had a roommate that shared her dedication. Lisa Hayes was the daughter of several generations of military tradition. She was dedicated and hard working and strived to exceed the expectations of her family. Through her, Ranma met an idealistic young man named Karl Riber. Lisa and Karl were an item. She got along well with Karl, sharing his dream of going into space, though she wondered how he would fit in the military with his non-violent ways.
They also knew of her curse. It had happened about six months into the academy. Lisa had been out with Karl and was supposed to be out for most of the night. Ranma had decided that she needed some male time and opted to hang out around the dorm room in his male form for a while. He had just taken a bath and was preparing to change back to female form when the bathroom door opened. Ranma saw Lisa standing there just as the cold water descended onto his head. The transformation occurred right before the young brunette's eyes and she soon hit the floor in a dead faint as her world view was shattered.
When Lisa awoke, explanations and demonstrations followed. Unable to deny the evidence of her own eyes, Lisa was forced to accept the existence of magic and curses. She was also persuaded by a tearful and pleading Ranma not to tell anyone outside of Karl and only then if Karl swore not to tell anyone. Lisa felt bad for her friend, who had worked so hard to get where she was. She knew that if this got out that Ranma's chances of reaching her goals were remote at best. She also realized that the curse would in no way effect Ranma's abilities or dedication. So rather than destroy her friend's life she agreed to keep her secret.
Ranma felt much more comfortable around the pair after that, and for their part, Lisa and Karl took Ranma as she was. The three became quite close friends. Karl would laughingly tease Ranma by truthfully mentioning that all the other guys were jealous of him for having the two prettiest girls in the Academy all to himself. They all had a good laugh over that.
Thanks to Ranma's hard work and the less demanding nature of her curriculum Ranma managed to graduate at the same time as Lisa and Karl who had been attending the Academy longer. She felt terrible for her friend when Lisa was heartbroken after finding out that Karl was leaving for Mars Base Sara. She had intended to follow him but her father who was high in the chain of command had her assigned instead to the SDF project. Ranma comforted her as best she could until she had to ship out to attend flight school. She had heard later that Lisa had thrown herself into her career with a vengeance in an effort to take her mind off her broken heart. She was greatly saddened later when she heard that contact with Mars Base Sara had been lost.
Ranma gathered her gear and prepared to deplane as the flight crew went through their post flight checklist. She was the first one down the ramp when the loadmaster dropped the ramp. She moved away from the noise of the aircraft's APU and paused to stretch out the kinks from the flight.
"Excuse me, Ma'am," a man with Chief Petty Officer tabs approached her. "Would you happen to be Lieutenant J-G Ranma Saotome?"
"That I am, Chief," Ranma replied.
"Outstanding, Ma'am," the chief said. "I'm Chief Smythe. I've been assigned to pick you up and show you to your barracks and then take you to the CAG to report in. I have a Humvee right over there. May I take your gear, Ma'am?"
"Thanks, Chief," Ranma grinned as she held out one of her duffles to him. The chief reached out and took the duffle bag...and it was immediately pulled to the ground when Ranma let go.
"Crap, sorry, Ma'am," the chief said giving her a strange look. "It was heavier than I expected." Ranma just smiled as the noncom wondered at the hidden strength the petite redhead must have to handle that much weight so casually.
"Don't sweat it, Chief," Ranma shrugged. "Please, lead the way."
"Yes, Ma'am," the noncom grinned ruefully. "Right this way, Ma'am."
They tossed Ranma's gear in the back of the hummer and after about a ten minute drive they arrived at a large building situated in the shadow of the enormous SDF-1. Ranma tried not to gawk too much but it was clear she was riveted.
"She's amazing, huh, Ma'am," Smythe asked in an amused tone.
"No kidding," Ranma grinned. "I guess I was staring."
"No worries, Ma'am, we all did the first time we got this close to her," Smythe chuckled. "Anyway, this building is the female BOQ. This is where you'll be staying. You go get checked in and drop off your gear. You have time, if you want, to freshen up a bit before meeting Commander Fokker. I'll wait right out here for you."
"Roger that, Chief," Ranma acknowledged and got out, collecting her gear before entering the building.
Once in the lobby, she approached the desk sergeant and introduced herself. The woman checked her information and led Ranma to her quarters. They were more luxurious than she was used to, actually being a small suite complete with a small galley style kitchen and a private bath. The living room had a set of glass sliding doors that opened on to a balcony with a nice view of the ocean not too far away. The main room also had a moderate flatscreen TV and a stereo housed in an entertainment center in front of a couch and a coffee table. Going though the other door, Ranma found herself in a bedroom with a double bed, and a desk. She dropped her gear on the bed and took out her kit before heading to the bathroom.
Ranma smirked at her image in the mirror as she touched up the little bit of makeup she wore. She had been resistant to the idea of wearing makeup at first, but Lisa had convinced her it was a good idea. Besides, if one had to be a girl, it was nice to look like an attractive girl. So Ranma took Lisa's advice and took pride in her appearance. The next stop was in front of the full length mirrors on the closet doors. Ranma smoothed out her black skirt which fell to a couple inches above her knees and then straightened her black tunic with gray stripped lapels with purple piping. She adjusted her ribbons and rank insignia and nodded to herself, satisfied that everything was in order. Grabbing her paperwork out of the pocket of her duffle and pocketing her key card, she went back down to rejoin Chief Smythe.
Ranma knocked on the door with the sign reading "CAG - CDR Roy Fokker". She heard a muffled response to enter and opened the door.
"Lieutenant Junior Grade Ranma Saotome reporting for duty, sir," Ranma said crisply, standing at attention and issuing a precise salute to the man with shaggy blond hair seated behind the desk. The man returned the salute and stood. At six foot five, he towered above Ranma's five foot four height, nearly giving her a crick in her neck from looking up at him. He smiled at her.
"At ease, Lieutenant," he said. "I don't stand on ceremony too much around here. Only when the brass is around. I'm Commander Roy Fokker, the CAG around here. Call me Roy and welcome to Macross Island." He put out his hand. She took it firmly and his eyes widened as he felt the strength of her grip in spite of the fact that her small hand was engulfed in his.
"Thank you, Sir, it's good to be here," Ranma said with a smile of her own.
"Please have a seat," he said, taking her orders. He glanced over them and then took a file off the edge of his desk and began to look though it. "Says here you are some sort of flying prodigy. In flight school they determined that your g-loading limits exceeded the aircraft limitations."
"Yes, Sir," Ranma said with a hint of pride. "It's the product of a childhood of intensive martial arts training. I've got perfect muscle control and I can control most of my bodily functions, like heart rate, blood pressure, and the like. My style is aerial so it's hard for me to be disoriented by violent maneuvers."
"Good, that'll be good for you because what you will be flying here has no structural limitations," Roy grinned, looking back down at the file. "Hm...you have quite a service record too. Flew mostly CAS in F/A 18-E Super Hornets...six air-to-air kills, two of which were SU-27's...two DFCs, one Navy Cross...impressive. Tell me about them."
"Well, Sir, I was just doing my job," Ranma said blushing. "I got the first Cross for saving a Marine mechanized infantry unit that was pinned down and about to be overrun. They were cut off and pinned down in a valley by two Hinds while a tank company moved in on their position supported by two infantry companies. They were calling for air support and my flight was in the area on its way to hit another target. I requested permission to go in and help and Command okayed it. I took the first Hind out from beyond visual range with an AMRAAM. They never saw it coming. I splashed the second one with my gun as I made the first pass. As I flew down the valley, I got targeting lock on two of the tanks and took them out with a pair of Mavericks. I nailed the third tank with a Maverick on the return. The last tank I got with a GBU. After I dropped a CBU-87 on the infantry positions and they retreated in disarray allowing the Medivacs to get in and remove the wounded Marines and the rest to be extracted via helo. I stayed in the area until the helos pulled out to cover them." Roy nodded.
"The second Cross was for the two SU-27 kills," Ranma went on. "My flight was headed back to the fleet after dropping our ordinance when we got a distress call from the JSDF AWACS supporting our operations in the area. They had 4 hostile aircraft closing on their position and there wasn't time to send anything up to intercept. We were close so my wingman and I requested permission to help in spite of the fact that we only have our two AMRAAMs and Sidewinders plus guns. We got the nod and made to intercept. I got the first kill with an AMRAAM. My wingman's shot missed but we closed and engaged the remaining 27s. My wingman managed to take the second out with a Sidewinder and after another minute I got the third with the gun. The last one bugged out and we didn't pursue because we were fuel critical. That's also how I got my ejection patch and my Purple Heart. When they sent out the refueling bird, I let my wingman tank up first since my fuel indicator said I had plenty. The problem was, my indicator was mis-calibrated and I ran out of fuel while I was waiting. I glided the aircraft to within 10 miles of the fleet before I lost enough altitude that I had to eject. I also managed to slice my hand on something as I did so. Fortunately, the tanker orbited me the whole time and it wasn't long until the helo arrived to pull me out of the water."
"So how'd you manage the Navy Cross?" Roy asked, impressed with the young woman before him.
"That one was scary," Ranma admitted. "My wingman was shot down as we were on our way to feet-wet. It was a pretty brutal mission. We had had to fight our way in when we were jumped by a flight of Migs. We had a very basic air-to-air load out and I had used all my missiles on the way to the target. We dropped an entire load out of mostly GBUs and Cluster Bombs on target before strafing enemy positions. My wingman took some ground fire and since we were all low on 20mm ammo, we made for egress. About 10 miles from the beach my wingman's plane failed and he punched out. I began to orbit the area, waiting for the extraction team, when I saw some rebel forces moving in on my wingman's position. I strafed their column, taking out several vehicles before my gun when dry. They didn't know that so they fell back. Then a couple of attack helos came in. I managed to hold them at bay. I even caused one to crash with a highspeed close pass that disrupted the airflow over his rotors. I kept the last one busy until the CH-53 came in with its Super Cobra escorts and the enemy helo bugged out. They awarded me the Navy Cross for staying in the area and covering my downed wingman even though I was unarmed."
"That definitely took some guts," Roy commented.
"I've got nothing on you, sir," Ranma said, blushing. "108 air-to-air kills...loads of decorations...you're a hero, Sir. I'm just a pilot doing my job."
"That's all I was doing, Lieutenant," Roy grinned. "I've been at it a little longer than you and I was fighting in a full scale war. You're record will be just as impressive as mine if you keep it up. I see you flew some Iron Hand too. That takes some serious intestinal fortitude." Roy shuddered as he thought of purposely allowing hostile SAM's to lock on to you so you could hit them with HARM's. "That's something I never did. Never wanted to. And you volunteered for it in between carrier deployments while most people take it easy, taking the opportunity to be at home with family and friends."
"Well, Sir, I don't really have family and not much in the way of friends either," Ranma said a little somberly.
"I bet you have a lot more friends than you think, Lieutenant," Roy remarked. "Anyway, the only dark spot on your record was near the beginning of your career. It says here you broke a superior officer's jaw. You wanna tell me about that one?"
"The bastard wouldn't leave me alone," Ranma growled darkly. "He kept flirting with me and wouldn't take the hint when I ignored him. Finally one day he crossed the line and groped me. I popped him in the jaw and put him down. The bastard turned around and tried to press charges against me, but a witness came forward and told the Board of Inquiry that he had groped me and had been sexually harassing me leading up to that point. The charges were dropped. I was fuming for weeks afterward and that's when my CO at the time gave me my call sign, 'Dragon Lady'."
"How come you didn't report him before that?" Roy asked.
"As much as he was a bastard, he was good at his job," Ranma admitted. "I can take care of myself so I figured I could handle it if he got out of line. Which I did. I just never figured on the shit storm that followed."
"Well, in this unit, I want you to come to me before things get that far," Roy said seriously. "Understood?"
"Yes, sir," Ranma said then grinned. "What if the problem is WITH you? I've heard you have a rep as something of a playboy." Roy chuckled. The phone rang, interrupting his reply.
"CAG," Roy said, answering the phone. "Well, if it isn't my favorite Lieutenant Commander...Yes, dear...Yeah, we're still on for tonight...yeah, as soon as I finish up with my new pilot, Lieutenant Saotome here...Yes, Ranma Saotome..." At this point Ranma could hear the excited squeal over the phone as Roy pulled the receiver away from his ear with a wince. "Okay, okay, I'll ask her...Roger...See you in a bit." Roy hung up the phone shaking his head. Ranma looked at him questioningly.
"That was the person you need to go to if you have a problem with me flirting with you," Roy grinned. "That was Lieutenant Commander Claudia Grant, my significant other. She seems to know you."
"We were stationed on the same base together when I was flying the Iron Hand missions," Ranma grinned. "It seemed to bug her that I kept to myself and didn't get out much. I guess I sort of became her pet project. She made it her mission to get me a social life. She also is the one that told me all about you, Sir."
"Yeah, that sounds like my Claudia alright," Roy laughed. "Anyway, we were going out tonight. She asked you to join us. Said she has a surprise for you and that you better not even think about declining because she'll drag you kicking and screaming if she has to...like the first time." Ranma rolled her eyes.
"I guess I'm going out then," Ranma sighed.
"Good choice," Roy laughed. "Come on, I'll drop you off at the barracks. We'll be around to pick you up around 6."
"Roger that," Ranma said with resignation.
Dictionary of Acronyms and other Jargon
(As requested by Lerris)
2IC-Second In Command
AMRAAM-Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile
APU-Auxiliary Power Unit
ATC-Air Traffic Control
AWACS-Airborne Warning And Control System
BDU-Battle Dress Uniform (fatigues)
BOQ-Bachelor Officer's Quarters
CAG-Commander, Air Group
CAP-Combat Air Patrol
CAS-Close Air Support
CBU-Cluster Bomb Unit
ETA-Estimated Time of Arrival
GBU-Guided Bomb Unit
HARM-High speed Anti-Radiation Missile
JSDF- Japanese Self Defense Force
LAV-Light Armored Vehicle
SAM-Surface to Air Missile
SDF-Super Dimensional Fortress
UNEDF-United Nations of Earth Defense Force
UNEDC-Untied Nations of Earth Defense Command
RDF-Robotech Defense Force
XO-Executive Officer (second in command)
Angels in reference to altitude is a navy thing, and is a way of saying flight level, which basically means adding three zeros on the number for the altitude reference. (JRA)