No Tendo: A Fusion Tale
by Greylle (Kestral) and Kender_SciDISCLAIMER: all rights, copyrights, dittorights, implied rights, etcetera are owned by the original owners of such. Even if they are altered significantly, they'll be returned at the end of shooting before you know it.
"The multiverse is composed of roughly one times ten to the five hundredth power universes in each mainline," informed the Being to his audience. "In those other universes you will often see reflections of another reality. The same world, or close to it. An individual of one mainline can often be found in the various realities bordering the other mainline."
"Analogues," said the apprentice to indicate she understood and remembered her lessons. "The reflection of one being in another reality. The same person, yet different due to the situations of that upbringing. Yes, I understand, Elder."
"The problem I wish you to study," said the Elder, "is in this reality. A disturbance along these branches here caused a mass merger within this timeline."
"It looks... odd," said the apprentice.
In another world, another time, Soun Tendo and Genma Saotome studied martial arts under a master named Happosai. Eventually they engaged their children before either actually had any children to engage.
Here it was different.
The Tendo engagement never occurred because Soun Tendo never studied under Happosai. Soun studied under a lesser Master, and the Tendo School Of Martial Arts followed an entirely different path as a result.
Genma had met Soun Tendo, but there was no shared suffering and laboring under a crazed loon. Genma labored alone and suffered alone. One day he was injured in the course of following the dread Master and ended up meeting someone different. In repayment, the engagement pledge came into play though with a very different participant.
It had been a long day for Genma, just like all the others he had been through since he had begun training. Promises of fast learning and great power had lured him into it, and he had once had dreams that he would become a great martial artist without having to curb what he didn't want to. But it proved to be otherwise, as the Master had proven to be rather harsh, uncaring and petty, with appetites that he expected his student to provide for.
And once again he had left his student to deal with his actions.
This time Happosai had taken the cake, both literally and figuratively. He had crashed the reunion of a group of young women who'd attended an all girls' high school, which gave him the opportunity to get all three of his favorite things. The diminutive pervert had groped and fondled each woman before taking all the liquor and food that he could carry. Plus, on his way out, he had 'visited' some other female patrons of the resturant that the party had been taking place.
Leaving his sole student with the 'responsibility' of getting whatever he could of what was left, and to act as a buffer between his Master and the righteous indignation of the assaulted women.
Needless to say, Genma had gotten out of their as quickly as he could. Grabbing what he could, as he knew that he would recieve his Master's displeasure if he didn't, the martial artist ran as fast as his legs could carry him. With Happosai's cackling in front of him, he knew which direction to go, but the women behind him provided the impetus. They were all deeply pissed, and very vocal about their intentions as they wielded improvised weapons of blunt force trauma. As he didn't want to get hurt, he dashed away, trying to lose them as he went, going so far to leap over a guard rail.
Unfortunately, the barrier had been put there so that people would not fall down the steep hill behind it. Tumbling down the slope, he came to a stop using one foot that slammed into the ground with a pain that shot up from his thigh to his chest. Getting up was difficult due to some aches and pains, but as he tried to stand, he realised that he had sprained his ankle and dropped his ill gotten gains.
Not wanting to face either his Master, or the angry women he could hear in the distance, he hobbled off as quickly as he could. It wasn't fast, but he wanted to put as much distance between him and his pursuers as possible. So he stuck to the shadows and tried to weave a chaotic path so that none of them would be able to follow him.
But he was sore, tired, and hungry, all of which caught up with him more quickly as he would have liked. Soon he was stumbling around and going only by sheer will. He got a burst of energy from that, and he used it immediately. However, that could only take him so far, and as he got into one corner, he found his legs giving out on him and sending him crashing to the ground.
"There he is!" called out a female voice.
That sent chills down his spine and he tried to huddle against the expected blows.
Except that the next voice to speak was male. "It is him, and he doesn't look so good."
"He hasn't been drinking, has he?" the woman asked.
"No... It looks like he's taken a fall of some kind. Not life threatening, but it couldn't have been fun."
"The poor dear..."
"Very poor, by the looks of him."
Genma felt himself being rolled over by masculine hands and looked up to see a blond man with glasses kneeling over him. "Who... who are you?"
"My name is Souichi Tomoe, and this is my wife," the man told him, gesturing up at the pretty dark haired woman next to him. "And you are..?"
"Well then Genma, what happened? How'd you end up like this?"
"I'm a martial artist, and I've been training under a sensei, but he got me into trouble... again, and so..."
"I see... It does explain the outfit. Still, you're coming with us."
"Yes, you are. You need to get better, and we're going to do it," Souichi told him with a grin, "And my wife will kill me if I leave you to suffer like this."
"Why you!" she commented good naturedly.
"Heh. Now let's get you to our house..."
Dazed and confused, Genma allowed himself to be brought to the house. Once there, he found himself in a well to do home, and a place where he was allowed to rest and relax. He got to know the couple, and enjoyed their company, especially since he got good care at that point.
Over the time he was with them, he grew so close that he couldn't help but feel gratitude towards them. And he felt that there was only one way to thank them for this.
He broached the engagement idea, and after a little convincing, got them to agree to it.
And even when he left their home, he remembered it.
A few years later:
"Of course I came to see the baby. Well when I heard..." Genma's voice trailed off as he felt something.
He had trained long and hard with the Master. He had developed the three ways of the thief, two of which he'd sealed after that problem with Kumon - resulting in the third path. He had turned his path away from that of Happosai, vowing not to follow the path of his Master. In this last he was somewhat successful.
Professor Tomoe turned away from his wife to see the portly martial artist staring at Hotaru. "Is something wrong?"
"Dear kami, what a chi to find in a child..." mumbled Genma.
"She's just hungry," said Mrs Tomoe, getting a bottle and heading over to feed the newborn.
"Saotome-san?" Professor Tomoe said, a little concerned now.
Genma blinked as the monstrous eruption of chi vanished. Or had it been something similar to chi, now back to slumbering? One thing was certain though. The arrangement he'd made with Tomoe-sensei was definitely a good one. "Pardon me. I was merely admiring the child's healthy set of lungs."
Mrs Tomoe seemed to accept that while the Professor seemed skeptical.
"Pardon," said Genma. "The boy is only two years old now and I'd best get back. No telling what mischief he's into at this point."
Genma smiled as he went home. He was working out details yet of the third school, the Way Of The Silent Thief and the Way Of The Noisy Thief had proven to have their problems, while the Way Of The Observant Thief seemed to have less day-to-day application but more potential.
Genma began considering the new wrinkle. Ranma would be trained to be the best martial artist possible, yet for a baby less than a month old to produce such a chi...
It was like finding a newborn lion cub that produced a roar like an earthquake. Firefly? More like a sleeping dragon!
Ranma would have to meet the girl. Be allowed to play with her. Get acquainted while still young. Perhaps some lessons to the child as well. It was doubtful, being a girl, that she'd ever reach the heights of mastery. With that kind of chi, some lessons in control might keep her from accidently burning herself out.
Genma was guessing, and he hadn't quite put behind his upbringing and experiences with Happosai, but he was trying.
For several years, Genma had trained the boy quite well in his own estimation. The boy had started off only being eager to learn, and had grown quickly into a skilled fighter for his age. There was still quite a long way to go, but he was certain that the boy would eventually become a superb martial artist, and the best around.
Not that he'd forgotten the arrangement he'd made with his friends. His son had made friends with the little child, and had become attatched to her. Which was exactly what his father wanted, and so the elder man was pleased by the progress his plan was making. Even though they only made quick stops on occasion, the boy looked foward to them, and he was certain that she did as well.
Even now, while on the road, the Tomoes and he kept in contact with each other, sending messages to keep each other up to date with how things were going.
Such as was the case at the moment.
Not that he was pleased by what he'd just heard.
However, he had decided that he couldn't run from this, and had to go face it.
Which meant immediately stopping the training and heading back to Tokyo.
"I don't know how this could happen," Professor Tomoe said as he sat in his chair, "Keiko was the only woman I've ever wanted to be with. How could she be taken away like this?"
Genma pressed his lips into a thin line. "I am sorry for your loss, but such things do happen. I wish they didn't, but they do. The only thing to do is to be there for your daughter."
"Hotaru... She's never going to know her mother, you know."
"Yes, but you can tell her all about her."
"It's not the same."
"I know," the portly man agreed, "But life isn't always fair. All we can do is to keep on going, and deal with the loss as best we can."
Souichi snorted. "I'm not sure I can ever really do that."
"Try. And you won't have to do it alone."
"No, you won't. Ranma and I'll stay here to assist you as best we can."
"But what about the training?" the professor asked.
"We can train right here. And if we need to, we'll just take a trip. Besides, the boy needs to learn how to adapt to changing circumstances."
"Don't worry about it. What are friends for?" Genma asked, already pondering how he could work things out, though the coming luxuries of indoor living made it easier, while another conversation was taking place nearby.
Ranma was five years old to Hotaru's three. He wasn't sure what to make of the little girl bawling her eyes out.
Genma watched Ranma for a few moments before joining his son. "Not a thing you can do at the moment, son. Let her be."
Ranma nodded, still wanting to do something but not sure what.
Genma thought it time for more philosophy, and as he had decided to pursue an anti-Happosai stance - went that route. "Son, what is the duty of a martial artist?"
"Ta be able to kick butt?" asked Ranma.
"Yes, that's... no that's not quite it," said Genma. "To protect yourself but especially those who can't otherwise do it themselves. Someday I hope you'll be protecting Hotaru there."
Ranma frowned in thought. "I'm supposed to protect her?"
"Yes, son," said Genma, not mentioning marriage or anything else. Keep it simple for now, use vague and general terms so Ranma could understand. "She's going to grow up into someone important and will need your help. Sometimes, like now, you can't do anything. Other times you'll be there for her and she'll need your strength."
Ranma brightened. It sounded like some new technique was on the schedule. "Okay!"
"Now," said Genma, figuring a distraction might help, "let's see about practicing your blocks."
Time passed. Ranma grew stronger and Genma continued vague predictions of Hotaru being important in the future. (He still avoided mentioning how or why, which to his mind would be a continuation of the school.) Because the two showed signs of becoming friends, some time for the two to play together was scheduled amongst the training.
Genma couldn't help some old habits, and it was the training he was familiar with. Ranma would have to get away from civilization to up the training level. Not to mention avoid some legal entanglements.
Still, Genma couldn't help but hide in the shadows and smile as the two children began a new game in the yard, trying to picture the two grown.
The smile faded as he saw a flicker of something else, that monster chi hiding within the frail girl.
Clearly he needed to find new techniques, focussing on control and mastery of chi. Perhaps some meditation and discipline techniques. The Way Of The Observant Thief had shown him a different path than the Way Of The Noisy Thief or the Way Of The Silent Thief. Perhaps...
It was lucky for Genma that he had managed to get his skills to the point where he could stand out in the clear and still manage to be unseen. That was helpful in not only battle situations as it allowed him to watch people without having to worry about interrupting them. Though in this case, it was much easier as these were children, and other than a bit of training, and some special chi, they were normal kids, who acted their ages most of the time.
So he was able to see as they sat together and did something slightly suprising.
"What's this?" Hotaru asked.
"It's a way to make an extra special promise remember?" Ranma told her, and held out a single finger.
She held out her own finger. "I do."
"Good." He hooked his pinky around hers and tried to look as serious as a kid his age could. "Now, I promise that I'll always protect ya."
"Yup. I'm gonna protect ya no matter what."
"Then I'll protect you too!"
"We're friends, right?" Hotaru told him. "So I've gotta protect you too!"
"I don't think it's supposed ta go that way..."
"Why not?! I'm going to do it!"
Rubbing the back of his head with his free hand, the pigtailed boy shrugged. "If ya wanna..."
The smile she gave him in return was bright.
That put him off balance for a moment, but he quickly regained his center. "I guess ya do..."
"Oh well," he said, "I guess that settles that. So... ya wanna get back ta the game."
Genma watched the two children get up and run off, and wondered what he should make of it. The idea that his son was stepping up to his responsibilites was a good on. But that the girl had insisted on reciprocating the promise was surprising. She was after all younger, smaller and weaker, though if that dormant chi was ever tapped into, she would be a force to be reckoned with. At the moment however, all he could read into this was that Hotaru had decided that she would be just like her friend.
Not that it was such a terrible thing in the elder Saotome's regard.
They spent four months there before Ranma and Genma parted company with the Tomoe family, during which time the Way Of The Observant Thief was further refined.
Originally the two methods had been intended as lifestyles, thieving methods approached as martial arts. The third had been added after the destruction of the Kumon dojo had demonstrated that mixing the two had been rather volatile.
The Way Of The Observant Thief was actually more along the lines of martial arts spying.
Professor Tomoe waved goodbye to his houseguests, an eye on his daughter as she also waved.
"Why do they have to go, Papa?" asked the little girl, clearly upset about losing her friend.
"Because Ranma's training to be a martial artist and that's how his father is training him," answered the Professor. He didn't mention how restless Genma had been getting the longer they were in one place. Genma apparently had a bit of wanderlust in him still.
"Ranma will come back, won't he?" Hotaru asked as the two turned a corner and vanished from view.
"Of course he will, Hotaru-chan. Of course he will."
Ranma had a purpose in life. Of such things can major differences can be formed. He had to protect Hotaru. While he'd been studying the martial arts before, Hotaru was going to be in trouble somehow if he couldn't protect her.
So Ranma was less driven by pride and more by purpose. A small difference in motivation perhaps, yet not without repercussions.
In one world, Soichiro Tomoe would have developed a "tanstaffel" - universe in a pocket. That would have left him to contact a Class IV Vampiric Entity known as Pharoah 90, which would have been very bad indeed.
Things were going a bit differently, but his field of expertise had been shaped for years before Genma Saotome had crossed paths with his own. He was also brilliant in that field, if a bit absent-minded and fumbling outside of it. Dimensional physics was still his focus in the sciences and he worked out the problems in his math eventually with several of the more promising students such as Kaolinite.
His thought processes were a bit different though, and so instead of a "pocket universe" he was developing something a little different.
His work showed mathematically how one might be able to open wormholes in space that would allow for travel over interstellar distances. He envisaged large toroidal 'stargates' which would link distant star systems and allow for humanity to spread to other planets.
Which led to Soichiro Tomoe being contacted by some very interested people.
Genma slowly awoke, stretching his frame bit by bit in the cool mountain air. Another day of training his son in the skills needed for him to become the true heir to Anything Goes. At fourteen, his son was fairly impressive - and the goal of protecting Hotaru was still something that the boy puzzled over but threw himself into.
"Excuse me," said Genma, bumping into some guy wearing sunglasses and a black suit as he stretched out. Yes, today would be a day of harsh training under difficult circumstances and... ?!
There was one such gentleman. And another over there. And three gathered there. And one over there talking into some walkie-talkie. And another with field glasses over there. And another right over there.
"Uhm, is something wrong?" asked Genma, hoping these weren't bill collectors.
Ranma had just gotten up and was fidgeting. "Is it about Hotaru?"
The guys (and one girl) in their stark black suits all looked as one towards Ranma.
One of them nodded.
"Then let's go!" Ranma declared, cutting off any protest his father might make.
The trip was made mainly in silence, the people in the suits seemed disinclined to small talk and nobody was giving any details on the events going on at their destination.
Ranma spent the entire time fidgeting. This was his big chance. Everything he'd learned so far was for the goal that was fast approaching. He had to do well. Since they were heading to the United States, he was also flipping through an English phrasebook.
"Haroo, Mistaru Jonusu. The pencil iss yerrow. Hasta la vista babee. Do ruu speake Japonese? You no shut up, I beat you like drum at bongo festival. Where is the bathroom?"
For some reason, a number of the black suited figures (including the girl) spent a lot of time either wincing or trying to restrain laughter.
General Hammond looked over the two and wondered why the old scientist had insisted on these two being informed if anything happened to him. Well, maybe appearances could be deceiving.
General Hammond knew that it would be hard enough to explain matters to anyone. After all, it wasn't every day that one would tell a civilian of another nation that the U.S. military not only had a device that could allow interplanetary travel, but used it on a regular basis. Of course, he could leave that part out, and simply inform them about the fact that someone had kidnapped the girl, but then that wasn't much better. Adding in the language barrier was just another hurdle that he didn't need at the moment.
Still, for some rather odd reason, Doctor Tomoe had been insistent that these two be told if anything happened to him or his child. He didn't understand why, but one could never understand the twists of another persons mind fully. However a promise was a promise, and he had a duty to fulfil.
"Hello, I'm General Hammond, the commander of this facility," he told them, "And I have some rather bad news to inform you of."
"Is about Hotaru, no?" the teenager asked.
"Yes, I'm afraid that it is."
"Ranma!" the elder Japanese man snapped.
The boy subsided, but looked rather annoyed to be restrained.
"Too sorry. Son very worried."
"I can completely understand," the General replied, "I would feel the same in his place."
The other man merely nodded.
"As for the situation, it is rather... bad. Shortly before we contacted you, an enemy force broke into this base and kidnapped Hotaru."
"'Kidnap'?" Ranma parroted in confusion.
"Grabbed, took... stole."
"She was taken by force, and the ones who did it ran off before we could get her back."
"Is not good. I go now."
"Rescue," came the teen's reply as he left the room.
"You can't exactly do that."
The General was about to answer that before he saw the boy manage to duck an weave around the guard outside the room with such ease and speed that he was shocked.
But a simple grab by his father caught the teen by the collar and dragged him back into the room.
Scowling, the boy glared up at his father. "Why do that?!"
"Time listen," came Genma's reply.
"Exactly," Hammond commented as he tried to get over how quickly the pair moved. "It's not as simple as you think. These were not normal people who kidnapped her."
"They are called Goa'uld, and they are a race of beings that take humans as bodies for themselves."
"Is... what word... Monsters?" Ranma blurted.
"They can be called that, but they are very powerful, with a lot of slaves who worship them as gods."
Both Saotomes frowned as they considered his words, and he was sure that they were going to have a lot of trouble dealing with what had come up. It wasn't an easy thing, but he knew that they would have to deal with it as quickly as they could. But he wouldn't push them, as it wouldn't serve any useful purpose.
Ranma fretted and paced, looking like a fourteen year old Japanese boy who was a little hyper or something.
In another world, another time, Ranma would have been a dedicated martial artist. Well, mostly. He tended to slack in that timeline until pushed by circumstances to master a new set of techniques or counter the same by a new/recurring opponent. For him to go out and try to learn a new technique on his own was much more rare.
Here, however, he had a Purpose. He'd known for years that his old man had told him that Hotaru needed to be protected. That it was Ranma's purpose in life.
Ranma had since watched and read all sorts of stories that involved that very concept, as he could relate now to the events in that sort of thing. She was his princess, sort of, and he was the samurai/gunman/knight who was charged with protecting her.
Ranma therefore was not weaker for having this new focus in his life. He'd learned more at this point than he otherwise might have, and more than he thought his father suspected.
"I rescue Hotaru," said Ranma again, glaring at his father.
Genma responded in Japanese, and whatever he said did not sound at all polite.
"Son, I understand you want to go off after your girlfriend, but what can you do when we already have a military force out there?" General Hammond had been young once, in love once or twice, but the idea of a foreign national being allowed access to the Stargate - unthinkable. Even now he was still inclined to use the expedient solution of sheathing it in concrete and burying it.
"General?" An aide stuck his head into the room. "We have activity at the Stargate, it looks like the team's coming back."
"You two wait here, I'll be right back," ordered the General, following the aide. Then he stopped and looked back in the room. "Where'd the boy go?"
Genma looked around and said something else in Japanese that didn't sound polite.
Ninjitsu. Not a particularly powerful style, but effective and it had some decent special techniques.
Several times guards raised their weapons and investigated a shadow, only to miss a flitting shadow behind them.
This was the kind of task he had been raised to do, and if he had to prove himself in order to rescue Hotaru - that was what he would do.
Now let's see, if I was some 'Sta-ru-ge-to', where would I be? Probably the lowest level because they would be restricting access to it.
"What do you mean you can't find him?" General Hammond asked.
"Ninjitsu technique," grumbled the large father walking around in the General's shadow.
"'Ninja'?" asked the General, whirling on Genma. "Your son is a ninja?"
"Not ninja. Use ninja technique. Hotaru fiancee of boy," explained Genma, frowning as he dredged up his English skills. The more he used it, the more he remembered - but it had been awhile since he'd done anything like this. He'd learned it years ago at a base while studying. "Commando training. Spe-ci-a-ru O-pa-su."
General Hammond stared for a moment before continuing at a slightly faster pace down the corridor. "Special ops training on a child? Captain Tsubasa! Go over the folder on these two and summarize it in light of these new developments."
"Already have sir," said the aide. "These two are practitioners of a highly advanced martial art style whose name translates as 'Anything Goes School Of Indiscriminate Grappling.'"
"Sounds like something O'Neill would find interesting," said the General.
"It seems similar to the 'Cotton Fist' or 'Goju Ryu' styles. Use anything that is useful, adopt your opponent's moves into your own, adapt like water to any situation, and so on." Captain Tsubasa opened a small notebook which had a bright baseball logo on it. "Expert thieves though they stick to penny-ante stuff, mainly food."
"Is for Art," token protested Genma.
"You have no idea how much trouble your son could find himself in, do you?" The General glared briefly at Genma. "Tsubasa, take Mister Saotome to his room and post a guard. Harlich, coordinate the search for his son."
"You not find him," protested Genma, "he use Umisenken. Special technique. Is not ninja, is like ninja. Tell Ranma it ninja, he learn so -"
"Yes I'm sure that's fascinating but we just don't have the time now," said the General. "I'll speak to you later."
Despite the fact that he knew little about this place, Ranma was sure that he could find this thing. He'd been trained most of his life to do stuff like this, and he wasn't planning on acting on letting all that effort go to waste. Hotaru was out there, and in danger, somewhere, and it was up to him to save her. There was no way that between his training, and the memories of the sweet little girl, that he would let anything stop him.
A few hitchhikes down on elevators later, he'd managed to get to a level swarming with activity. There were a lot soldiers heading in one direction, and he decided to follow them. If there was some big to do where he wanted to go, then it was likely that they'd send forces to make sure that everything was secure. However, since they took the most direct route, he only had to trail after them.
That led him to a rather odd room, in which things got even odder. A ramp led up to what looked like a big stone ring, only there were lights on it, and an inner ring was turning with a speed that should have been impossible. It seemed that it was dangerous, as the soldiers were pointing guns at the thing.
He wasn't prepared for the big... whooshing sound that came from it, nor the sight of what looked like water spanning a space that was vertical.
And when people started coming through out from the 'water', he nearly lost his balance in shock, while watching four people come down that ramp.
The base was even more inclined towards frantic activity as the team returned.
The cause was a large dark-skinned man with an emblem on his forehead.
"Wait," said the large man. "There is someone unseen here."
O'Neil and the others began making explanations about closed-circuit television.
General Hammond made the connection. "That boy made it down this far?!"
Teal'c looked around, his eyes scanning the surroundings.
"What boy?" asked O'Neil.
"Hotaru's fiance," said the General, also scanning the room around him with his gaze. "If he made it down here, I'm actually a little impressed. This 'commando training' the boy has undergone might be something to look into later."
Teal'c continued to look around when he paused and his gaze tracked back to a place he'd already passed by. "There."
"I don't see..." O'Neil began.
Seeing all the guns pointed in his direction, Ranma reluctantly dropped the Umisenken.
"...I gotta learn that," finished O'Neil.
"Is special technique. Where Hotaru?" asked Ranma.
"You should be worrying about yourself, son," indicated the General.
"No worry me, need protect Hotaru," said Ranma with the sort of focus a fourteen year old boy rarely had.
"Well, that might be a little difficult," hedged O'Neil.
"Me go, me is protect Hotaru," insisted Ranma.
"I understand," said Teal'c, surprising people who had momentarily forgotten about the stranger. "You are a warrior and you have your task before you. You cannot go before you learn the details though, or you will fail in your mission."
Oddly enough that seemed to calm Ranma. "Sun Tzu. Understand. Need learn. (I don't know how to say it in English though. I was to be her protector and I wasn't there to protect her.)"
"So the Stargates do have a translation function as regards spoken languages," said a guy in glasses.
"That is good for future reference," General Hammond commented, "But even with that realisation, and the understanding that Mister Saotome here has for his problem, I'm not about to let him run all over this facility."
"That's understandable," O'Neil said, "But who is he, and how'd he get down here?"
"This is Ranma Saotome. He and his father were the ones that we were instructed to contact by Doctor Tomoe if anything happened to him or his daughter."
"Ahh... An emergency contact field trip."
"Is not trip. (I wanna find Hotaru and save her)," Ranma grumbled, "(I can't do that without going and finding her.)"
"Ain't going to happen."
"(What's that mean?)"
"It means that kids with no intel, no clearence, and no idea of what's going on shouldn't go and risk little girls getting hurt."
"(I wouldn't do that.)"
"You'd risk it," the colonel replied, "You really wanna help out? Let us handle things."
"(It's not what I'm supposed to do.)"
Teal'c nodded. "Indeed. He's a warrior. For such to go back on an oath is no little thing."
O'Neil gave the dark skinned man a sour look. "Who's side are you on anyway?"
"You do realise that for him, it is like you are asking him to let someone close to him be in danger when he feels he could stop it."
"He's got a point there," the man in glasses commented.
"Thank you for that, Daniel," O'Neil drawled.
"You're welcome... err..."
"There is a way to make him settle down," Teal'c informed the group.
"And that would be..?"
The bald man gave the teen a measuring look. "Would you risk going after your companion without knowing where she is, or what sort of forces you might be facing?"
"(I could figure out something when I got there..,)" Ranma muttered.
"But would it not be better to know what it is that you face, and how to defeat it?"
"(Ugh... You're right...)"
Teal'c nodded in response to the boy's agreement.
"One thing though," Daniel commented, "Did anyone think to mention to him that he can't get to where she is unless the Gate's opened for him?"
At his words, O'Neil turned to the woman. "Carter?"
"That's true, sir. Unless he was instructed in the use of the dialing computer and given clearence, he wouldn't be able to dial out."
"He can't use the Gate unless someone shows him how."
"And since he hadn't been on base long enough for that, it's certain that he won't be going anywhere," Hammond said.
The Japanese boy sighed heavily and slumped as he realised that even with his need to help Hotaru, he couldn't act as he'd hoped to.
"That's reassuring," O'Neil commented, "Now, can we leave the room and get on with business?"
Hammond nodded. "Certainly. Unless Mister Saotome wishes to try something else."
"(No. I'll wait. For now,)" Ranma muttered, clearly displeased about his being delayed.
"Good. Then you can stay on the base while we figure out just what we should do."
"Great. We get to report on our outing," O'Neil drawled -0-0-0-0-
Author's Notes: Roughly half of this was written by Kender_Sci, the other half by me, over at the Anime Addventure.
It's easier for people to read in a fanfic format though.
i'm hoping that by writing and posting this here, it'll get me over the writer's block i've had on this story for over a month now. We'll see.