"OHOHOHOHOHO!!!! It is the pet vermin of the wicked Akane Tendo! Come to Kodachi! I know how to make you useful!"

George slipped out of Kodachi's ribbon and ran as fast as his pig legs would carry him. He didn't want to know her idea of "useful". How had this happened to him? How could he have acquired Ryoga's curse?

The outer wall of the estate loomed before him, as tall as a skyscraper from his perspective. He scurried along the ground at its base, hoping desperately that the evening shadows would hide him from Kodachi.

After crawling through the brush for what seemed like miles, he came to an exit gate. Forcing his pig body between the bars, he slipped out onto the sidewalk.

Cars the size of houses zoomed by on the road as George quickly made his way away, the concrete scraping painfully on his shoeless appendages. Soon he had no idea where he was. Did he now have Ryoga's problem with directions too? Or was it just the smallness of his new form?

He came across a house, and ducked in through the opened door. Hopefully, he could get some hot water somewhere inside.

Moving through the house as fast as he could, he listened for anyone who might be present, but heard nothing. With his luck, he thought, he had probably come around in a circle and was now back in Kodachi's house.

He finally came to a door. This would be the bathroom, if the house he was in was the same as the Tendo home, as it seemed to be. Slamming his piglet body against it, he managed to get it to swing open. Just a little hot water, and everything would be all right.

Inside the bathroom, a short-haired girl dried herself with a towel. Happy recognition crossed her face as she turned. "P-chan!!" she exclaimed, as her towel fell away. "P-chan, don't be afraid, it's me!"

George caught sight of Akane's magnificiently-conditioned body in its full naked glory. Blood gushed from his nose as the world spun into blackness.


George found himself on a bed in a neat and tidy room. Akane, sitting next to him in her pajamas, smiled at him warmly.

"Oh P-chan, I'm so glad you're all right!" she cried, as she grabbed him into a tight hug.

George had been with a few different girls in his life, and had even gone all the way once or twice. But never had he felt anything like the tenderness and warmth of Akane's embrace. It was like coming home, finding a home that he had never known. Finally, everything *was* all right, there in her arms.

Akane turned off the light and lay down on the bed. "Good night, P-chan!" she said, as George snuggled close to her. If this was what being a pig meant, he could be a pig for a while.

The light came on again.

"Oh, I almost forgot. I wonder what this letter says?" She picked up the envelope that George had left for her earlier and began to tear it open. Contentment gave way to total panic as he remembered what he had written.

"That's strange. I wonder why it says to do that? I guess it couldn't hurt to try, though." Akane took George in her arms, ignoring his frantic protests, leaving her room, carrying him toward the bathroom.

"Don't be afraid," she said, turning on one of the faucets. "Mommy won't hurt you. It's only a little hot water." She moved George under the spigot, his pig body unable to resist her strength.

"Uh...." George found himself suddenly back in his normal body. "About not hurting me..."

Akane's scream filled the household.


Ranma, Kasumi, Nabiki, Genma, and Soun came running. "What is it, Akane?" they shouted.

"I'LL KILL HIM!!! My P-CHAN! All this time, this PERVERT was my P-chan, sleeping in my bed!" She brandished a mallet that had not been there a second ago, and swung back, aiming to knock George's head into the ground like a railroad spike.

Ranma got a look as if he were putting two and two together. "Hey wait!" he said, grabbing Akane's mallet in mid-backswing. "This guy's not P-chan! That box thing made him *look* like P-chan!"

"Oh," Akane said, taking in this new revelation. Then her angry expression returned. "But he was in my BED! He was going to SLEEP WITH ME tonight!"

"Uh, I guess you got a point there." Ranma let go of the mallet. The others murmured in agreement as Akane swung back again.

Suddenly a voice called out, "SAOTOME!!!!!" Everyone turned to see Tatewaki Kuno determinedly rushing toward them.

"Yes?" Genma said.

"Not YOU!" Kuno retorted.

"What?" Ranma snapped. "Whattaya want?"

"It is you this time, is it not?"

"Of course it's me, idiot! I'm Ranma Saotome! Who else would..."

"Then DIE!! Die for what you have done to the Pig-Tailed Girl! *Strike!* *Strike!* *Strike!*" Kuno launched a rapid-fire series of bokken thrusts. Ranma, unprepared for the ferocity of the attack, dodged frantically.

"Hey!" George interrupted. "I thought I explained..."

"Indeed you did. *Strike!* You showed me how the Pig-Tailed Girl *Strike!* had been cursed to take on the appearance of Ranma Saotome, in the same way that the lovely Shampoo was cursed to take on the appearance of my insane *Strike!* sister. What a dark, foul deed, to despoil a young and beautiful flower *Strike! Strike!* to satisfy his own vanity. And you told me that this effect was permanent. Therefore *Strike!* the only way *Strike! Strike!* to rescue the Pig-Tailed Girl is for her foul tormentor to DIE!! Why *Strike!* have you no clothes?"

"Huh?" George noticed his own nudity for the first time since he'd changed back into a human.

Ranma took advantage of the distraction to give Kuno a quick kick in the face, sending him through the wall. He glared at George. "This is all your fault. You tell me you're here to solve my problems, and then this? And sleeping with Akane?!?" He was seething with anger.

George decided that this would be a good time to make a strategic withdrawal. He ducked out through the Kuno-shaped hole in the wall and ran as fast as he could. He saw Ranma, Akane, and Soun chasing him, yelling "Come back here!"

Kuno got up. "Sleeping with Akane? That is a crime more heinous even than anything Saotome has done! I, Tatewaki Kuno, shall punish you, fiend!" He chased after George.

Another voice was heard. "OHOHOHOHO!!!! There you are! I will have what I want from you, even if I have to kill you to get it!" Thoughts of his dead body being used in some rather disgusting ways made George run even harder.

Happosai leapt into view. "Hey! You're the one who stole my undies!" He joined the chase.

George came around the block and was face-to-face with Shampoo. She would help him, she had to. By Amazon law he was now legally her husband! "Shampoo, it's me! The one who defeated you in combat! You've got to help me!" he said as he rushed toward her.

"What crazy naked boy talking?!?" she said, punching him in the stomach. "Make slur on Shampoo's reputation? I KILL!!" He ran as she began chasing him as well.


George's heart was pounding as if it was about to explode. He remembered an old cartoon. *Help me, Mister Wizard! I don't want to be a martial artist anymore!*

After what seemed like hours, he stopped running, though he couldn't stop puffing and panting. Finally it seemed that there was no one chasing him. He was in the clear.

"Hey there." Ranma stepped out from the evening shadows, cracking his knuckles.

"It wasn't supposed to happen this way," George said, to no one in particular. "Not this way at all."

"You stupid screw-up." Ranma said. "I oughtta give you a good pounding right now."

"Oh, yeah?" George felt his second wind -- or maybe it was his third or fourth. Maybe he was just tired of being made a fool of. "Just try it, pal. I've got an attack that's guaranteed to take you down." George felt an energy building up inside of him as both boys assumed combat stances. "This is it!" he yelled. "Cyberspace School of Martial Arts Final Attack! The..."

The killfile.

All at once George knew that the Goddess had told him the truth. She *had* given him an attack that could take down Ranma. In fact, it would kill him. George had come to help Ranma. He got everything wrong, caused him nothing but trouble, and now he was going to end up killing him. That George, real helpful guy he is.

On the other hand, Ranma was just a cartoon character, wasn't he? And wouldn't killing him mean that Shampoo would then belong to the man who killed him? The others would be pissed off, they'd try for revenge, but he could escape with Shampoo back to her village. He could become king of the Amazons!

The energy within George built toward its climax. There was no turning back now, the energy was there, the attack had to be made. He saw things clearly for the first time. He could see what he needed to do to get everything he had ever wanted.

But he wouldn't do it.


There was a loud *PLONK*, followed by a scream of deathly agony. The angry mob led by Akane went to investigate.

"Huh?" Akane gaped in shock. "He's... dead?!?"

"Yeah," Ranma said. "He was gonna use his attack on me, but looks like it backfired on him instead. Looks like we'll never know who he really was."

"Oh... that's too bad, I guess." She had wanted to kill George herself moments earlier, but when someone was dead it was hard not to feel sorry for him.

Unnoticed, a familiar little old lady watched the scene. "George no baka," she said to no one with a chuckle.

She carried the Box of E'civedt'olp. It was time for it to be put away; it had served its purpose.

She let go of her body; it, along with the Box, dissolved into the ether. This form was another one of her favorites, because it was so good for catching people off-guard; but for now it had served its purpose as well. The part of her essence that had given life to this manifestation rose up through the cosmos, and merged into her larger being.

She had been right, it had been fun. This one had provided her with even more amusement than she had expected.

And the fun wasn't over. It was just beginning.


George regained consciousness and looked around. He stood on a street corner, one that looked a lot like the one he had fought Ranma on. But this had to be the real world. The Goddess had told him that the death of his body in this world would take him back to his own universe.

But why did he still have his magnetic tape ribbon and razor floppies? That didn't make any sense!

George's finger accidentally scraped the edge of one of his razor floppy disks. Blood trickled from the wound, but soon stopped as the cut miraculously closed. Within a few moments there was no trace of it.

The old woman! The food she had given him was the Mermaid Meat from that video! He now had a body that couldn't be killed. Still, that might not be so bad if...

"Hey!" The angry mob that had been chasing George came around the corner.

He was still in the Ranma world.

"He's not dead!"

He was stuck there, with no way to get home.

"It was a trick!

"Let's get him!"

George ran.


George had to stop. He couldn't feel his legs anymore. He felt
as if he'd ran farther than he ever had before. If he hadn't lost them,
he never would.

He looked at his surroundings. In front of him stood a somewhat
run-down two-story building. Its sign identified it as an apartment

A pretty woman came out. She wore blue jeans and a sweater, with
her long hair tied back into a bow. "Oh, hello! Have you come about the
handy-man job? Did father-in-law send you?"

George just stood, puzzled.

"We were a bit surprised when the company suddenly offered to
pay for a full-time repairman. Not that the place doesn't need one.
You'll have your hands full here. I'm afraid the job doesn't pay much,
but you do get a free room out of the deal."

A young man in jeans and a black T-shirt emerged from the
building. "Kyoko, please listen to me!" he said desperately.

Kyoko turned away from the new arrival and continued speaking to
George. "You'll be in room three, just inside and down the hall. I'm the
resident manager. If there's anything I can do for you, please let me
know." She walked into the building.

The young man sat on the steps, tears forming in his eyes. "Oh,
Kyoko... Kyoko...."

George turned to him, ignoring a strange feeling of deja vu.
"Got trouble?"

"It's just a stupid misunderstanding. She... she thinks that
Kozue and I..."

"Don't worry about it, pal." George put a hand on the man's
shoulder, reassuringly. "I'm here to help." Yes, he'd be the handy-man.
Whatever problems this guy and Kyoko were having, he'd fix them.

After all, what could go wrong?


AUTHOR'S NOTES: When I first read Ranma, before I had ever heard of fanfiction, I imagined that I could go into the Ranmaverse myself. Surely with my knowledge of the series, I thought, I would be able to help Ranma and friends out, tell them things that would make life easier for them. It would be easy to change the status quo.

As we fanfiction enthusiasts know, there are actually many plausible ways in which the status quo of the Ranmaverse might change, with or without an interfering outsider present. Many fics have been written with believable scenarios in which Akane finds who P-chan is, or in which Kuno realizes who his Pig-Tailed Girl is, for example.

Changing the status quo is easy; the trick is to *keep* it from being changed. It was the genius of Rumiko Takahashi-sama that kept the Ranma 1/2 series going through thirty-eight volumes, maintaining the equilibrium of the series while keeping it ever fresh and interesting.

Please note that I am NOT saying that fanfics shouldn't change the status quo. Whether this is a good thing or not depends on the particular story.

The title of this fic is based on a line from the Urusei Yatsura anime; specifically, the "Age of Dinosaurs" TV episode. Lum (whose appearance the Goddess takes on in the beginning of this story) is from UY, and the characters at the end are Kyoko and Yusaku from Maison Ikkoku.

C&C is most welcome on this or any other of my works; in any case, I hope you enjoyed it.

This story is respectfully dedicated to Rumiko Takahashi -- not a kami, but a superbly creative human being.