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Changing Times

Last Time

While getting ready for her wedding, Akane gets hit by a car and ends up in a coma. The others take turns watching over her and just as she wakes up, Ranma learns she has lost her memory.

Chapter 6: Never leave you

Disclaimer The Ranmaverse and all of it's characters are property of the brilliant Takahashi-sama and I claim no ownership of them. Only the story belongs to me.

Edited 02/23/08

"Any change with Akane this morning?" Nabiki asked as Ranma walked in and sat down at the table for breakfast.

"No she's still the same as she has been for the last month. She hasn't remembered anythin' yet." Ranma said shaking his head as he picked up his bowl and started eating.

"Still doesn't want to eat down here either?" Soun asked nodding toward Akane's empty spot next to Ranma.

"Nah says e'eryone stares at her when she's down here eatin' so she'd rather eat in her room." Ranma said with a laugh as he quickly finished off his food and then picked up Akane's. "I'll brin' this up ta her." Ranma said as he turned and headed upstairs before anyone could say anything else.

"'Kane can I come in?" Ranma called from outside her door as he balanced her bowls in his hands.

"Yes Ranma." Akane called back as she opened the door and moved out of the way so he could enter.

"Brought ya breakfast." Ranma said with a smile as he put the bowls down on her desk.

"Thank you Ranma." Akane said softly as she sat down and started eating.

"I'll be down stairs while ya eat." Ranma informed her as he started back out of the room.

"Can you stay?" Akane asked looking over at him.

"Sure 'Kane." Ranma said with a smile as he sat down in the extra chair at her desk.

"A campin' trip huh?" Ranma asked looking over at his father who had just suggested the getaway. "I think ya right, we could all use a break and it'll be good for 'Kane. I'll go see if she feels up for goin'." Ranma said with a smile as he stood up and headed up stairs.

"You sure we should invite everyone though?" Nabiki questioned after Ranma was out of ear shot.

"I think they have earned the break as well and they seem to have come to terms with Ranma and Akane being together." Soun explained as he looked up from the Go game they had returned to when Ranma left.

Nabiki just raised her eye brows at him for a moment before shrugging.

"'Kane?" Ranma called as he opened the door to her room and walked in.

"Yes Ranma?" Akane asked looking up at him from the picture frame she was holding in her hands.

"What'cha got there?" Ranma asked as he walked over and sat down on the bed next to her.

"It's a picture of everyone. I was hoping that looking at all the faces at once might help me with my memory." Akane said softly as she looked back down at the picture but still not recognizing most of the faces staring back at her.

"It'll come in time 'Kane." Ranma said reassuringly with a smile as he took a hold of her hand. "Pop came up with an idea ta go on a campin' trip. A way for e'eryone ta get away from e'erythin' and relax for a while. Ya feel up ta goin'?"

"Do I like camping?" Akane asked after thinking about it for a minute.

"Yeah." Ranma answered with a nod.

"Then let's go." Akane said with a smile as she started getting off the bed. She looked around her room for a minute and then turned to Ranma confused.

"What's wrong 'Kane?"

"Where do I keep my bag? I do have a camping bag right?" Akane asked as she raised her eye brows.

"It's in the closest." Ranma said with a smile as he walked over and pulled it out.

"Looks like e'eryone is here." Ranma said with a grin as he walked downstairs with Akane. In addition to the Tendos and Saotomes, Shan Pu, Mu tsu and Ukyo were there waiting with their bags ready to go.

"I hope I packed enough food." Kasumi fretted as she walked into the room from the kitchen.

"No worries Kasumi I'm bringing my grill with me as well." Ukyo assured her with a smile.

"Shan Pu bring stuff make ramen." Shan Pu said with a nod of her head.

"Well then if we are all ready shall we go?" Nodoka asked with a smile as she looked around at the group.

"Sounds good ta me." Ranma said with a smile as he took a hold of Akane's hand and they all headed out the door.

"So where's this camp site of ya's pop?" Ranma asked as they continued to hike uphill like they had been for the last two hours.

"Getting soft boy?" Genma asked with a laugh not bothering to turn to look at him.

"No old man, some of the girls aren't used ta this." Ranma replied nodding to Kasumi and Nabiki who seemed to be having problems.

"Ranma has a point Genma I think we should give the girls a small break." Nodoka said with a tone that gave him no room to argue. With a snort Genma stopped the group in the clearing that was just ahead of them.

'Thanks.' Nabiki mouthed to Ranma as she sat down to get off of her feet for a minute.

"How ya doin' 'Kane?" Ranma asked as he helped her to sit down on a large rock.

"A little tired but I'm okay. Don't think I should have packed so much." Akane said laughing as she pulled her bag off her back and let it drop to the ground. Ranma reached over and threw it across his back before she could stop him.

"You don't have to do that Ranma." Akane insisted as she stood back up to get her bag back.

"No worries 'Kane. Take it easy for a while." Ranma said with a smile as he took back a hold of her hand.

"Where in the world am I now?!" Ryoga screamed out looking around the clearing he was in.

"Heya Sugar fancy meeting you here." Ukyo said with a grin.

"What are you doing here? This isn't Nermia." Ryoga said confused as he started to notice the others that were there as well.

"Campin' trip. We tried ta invite ya but ya were too hard ta track down." Ranma said laughing as he walked over to him with Akane.

"Oh." Was all Ryoga could say.

"We all ready to head out?" Genma asked walking over to them.

"Yeah pop." Ranma said with a nod as they all started walking but Ryoga. Ranma looked back when he noticed Ryoga was heading the wrong way, and laughing, let go of Akane's hand. Walking back to Ryoga he grabbed onto his arm and pulled him over to Ukyo.

"You've got Ryoga duty." Ranma said with a grin as he walked back over to Akane. Ukyo shook her head at Ranma before looking over at Ryoga.

"Guess you're stuck with me Sugar." Ukyo said with a smile.

"Ya sure this bridge is safe pop?" Ranma asked as he followed the bridge with his eyes to the other side of the cannon. Looking down he saw a long drop before the river below.

"Yeah it's safe boy stop being so scared." Genma grunted as he headed across the bridge, once he made it to the other side the others started following him.

"Let's go 'Kane." Ranma said as they were the last two needing to cross.

"I'm scared Ranma it doesn't look safe." Akane said as she looked down over the edge.

"It's okay 'Kane I'm gonna be right there with'cha." Ranma assured her as he took a hold of her hand and started crossing with her. "Almost across." Ranma pointed out when they were about five feet from the edge.

"Ranma! The bridge!" Ukyo screamed pointing behind them. Ranma turned just as the other side broke away and they began falling toward the river.

Ranma quickly grabbed onto the bridge as he grabbed Akane's hand and they were slammed into the side of the mountain. "Ya okay 'Kane?" Ranma asked looking down at her.

"Yeah I'm okay." Akane said softly.

"Just a second Ranma and we'll pull you guys up." Ryoga called over the side of the cliff as Mu tsu laid down and Ryoga grabbed a hold of his feet, lowering him over the edge.

"'Kane grab his hands." Ranma instructed as Mu tsu's arms came within their reach and Ranma raised her up to him.

"Hold on Akane-san." Mu tsu said as he grabbed onto her hands and Ryoga started pulling them up. "Hold on Saotome, coming down for you." Mu tsu said after placing Akane on the ground and Ryoga started lowering him over the cliff again.

"Okay..." Ranma started but was cut short when the last ropes of the bridge broke free and he started falling toward the river below.

"Ranma!" Ryoga screamed as he watched him falling, unable to stop him. When he lost sight of Ranma, he pulled Mu tsu back up and turned back to Akane.

"I'm sorry Akane, we couldn't get to him." Ryoga said softly looking at the ground at his feet.

Akane wasn't listening, thoughts of the past had started to flood her mind. I'm Ranma Saotome sorry about this.

I wanted ta tell ya your hair really does look cute.

'Kane's my fiancé ya touch her and I'll kill ya!

I just wanted ta make sure ya saw that I had returned as a man again, as I had promised! Welcome back Ranma.

Ya move. But I know somethin' ya don't know 'Kane is MINE!

'Kane's my fiancée the one that's gonna fight for her is gonna be me.

Because! She's my fiancée!

What? But Ranma you're losing! I'm just worried about you. Ya idiot. Ya don't know anythin' do ya? If I quit now how will I get ya back?

No one's gonna take her from me. 'Kane's mine and she's engaged to me!

Is that the spring? Now you can be cured, Ranma! No way, 'Kane! What?! I gotta blow it up! Ranma, no! Then you'll never be able to-- Hey, didn't ya just say ya like me the way I am? I do! Well, the way that ya are is the way that I -- I gotta destroy it! Ranma. This is it, 'Kane, all my remainin' strength! E'erythin' I've got in one all-or-nothin' blast--NOW!

I fell in at Jusenkyo! No matter what ya transform into I'll...

Why'd ya look like 'Kane?! We're gonna find ya. And then ya gonna pay for hurtin' 'Kane.

Ranma run for it! Hurry!

She...she's alive?! For 'Kane ya bastard!

I'm gettin' the water for 'Kane now. Stay outta my way or get hurt.

'Kane! Don't ya hurt her! A shield? For me?

For endangerin' 'Kane's life, ya'll pay! HIRYU SHOTEN HA!!

She...She's smilin'! She's still with me!

'Kane! Don't leave me now! Not like this! Please Dragon! Look up to the sky and brin' her back to me! Please! Please I beg ya come back ta me!

I wanted ta tell ya that I love you! Once the memories had finished flooding her mind, Akane just looked over the edge of the cliff. Taking a deep breath, Akane rushed toward the edge.

"Ranma!" Akane screamed as she jumped off before Ryoga could grab a hold of her.

"Akane no!" Ryoga screamed as he landed on the edge and Mu tsu had to grab a hold of him so he wouldn't fall over as well.

Everyone just stared out over the cliff in complete shock of what had just happened. "She jumped." Ryoga said still unable to believe she had done it.

"Well standing around here wont do us anyone good." Mu tsu said standing up and dusting himself off. "Let's go look for them." Mu tsu said as he started looking for a way down the cliff.

"You think they're okay?" Soun asked as he managed to turn off the water works that had started in the moment the bridge started to break.

"If anyone can survive it's them two." Mu tsu called over not bothering to turn back. The others looked at each other for a moment before following after him. "We should be able to make our way down here and follow the river, but I don't think the girls can make it down a hill this steep." Mu tsu said stopping and turning to look at the others.

"Right they should set up camp up here and we'll head down." Genma agreed nodding his head. "The girls and Tendo will stay here. Mu Tsu and Ryoga will come with me." Genma said turning toward his wife, who nodded in agreement.

"Why do I have to stay? I can handle that." Ukyo said nodding toward the cliff.

"Shan Pu can too." Shan Pu agreed with her.

"Yes but we need some martial artists to stay here to protect the girls." Ryoga said nodding toward Kasumi and Nabiki.

"Ah." Ukyo said nodding her head. "So who's hungry?" Ukyo asked taking out her grill, hoping to calm everyone down before they tried to take on a hill that steep.

"Good idea. I think we should eat before heading down." Genma said nodding his head as he sat down in front of the grill.

"Ran..Ranma?" Akane mumbled as she started to regain consciousness and opening her eyes she began to take in her surroundings. She was lying in a small pond at the base of a large waterfall.

Looking over to the side, she noticed Ranma-chan was submerged in the pond next to her and went to go over to him but pain shot up her leg causing her to stop. She let the pain subside before trying again to go over to him.

Ignoring her leg, she grabbed a hold of Ranma-chan and began dragging him out best she could with only one leg to use. Once they were out of the water she pulled the bags off of his back and checked to make sure he was breathing.

"Thank Kami" Akane breathed when she found his pulse easily and that his breathing wasn't too irregular. "He must not have been under for too long." Akane thought out loud to herself relieved.

Opening up her pack she quickly found her small camping stove and began heating some hot water. "Think I'll make enough for tea too. But got to remember to leave you enough to change back." Akane told the unconscious Ranma-chan with a smile.

"Well let's head out. Looks like there is a storm coming and I don't want to have to make camp on the hill when it hits." Genma informed the others while he shouldered his pack.

"Make sure you keep the fire going, it will keep the animals away and you should set up your tents now in case the storm hits with out warning." Genma said turning to Nodoka before he started off down the side of the cliff with the others.

"My poor little girl!" Soun wailed again for the umpteenth time since they had stopped.

"She'll be okay Mr. Tendo. Ran-chan's with her." Ukyo reassured him with a smile as she pulled out her tent and started setting it up.

"How do you know that? They could be miles apart." Soun informed her as his tears stopped momentarily.

"Come on this is Ran-chan we are talking about. Trust me, where ever Akane is, Ran-chan isn't far behind." Ukyo insisted gaining a nod from Shan Pu.

"Anyone catch the license plate number on that bus?" Ranma-chan asked no one in particular as he opened his eyes.

"I think it was BA KU FU." Akane said laughing as she helped him to sit up before handing him a glass of tea. (AN: This is a play on waterfall as is not meant to be a realistic license plate from Japan)

"There's some water left for you to change back." Akane said nodding to the kettle.

"How long was I out?" Ranma asked still a bit confused as to what was going on.

"Depends on how long I was out, but I woke up about 35 minutes ago." Akane replied after thinking for a moment.

"Wait ya were out too?" Ranma asked confused as he looked over at her. "Last thin' I remember was the bridge broke but Mu Tsu and Ryoga had already pulled ya up by then." Ranma said as he picked up the kettle and poured the water over his head.

"Yeah I jumped." Akane said quietly as she sipped on her tea.

"Ya what?!" Ranma screamed at her unable to believe what she had just said.

"Ranma." Akane said looking up at him. "I'm never going to leave you, not after everything we have been through." Akane informed him with a smile, a smile so bright he almost didn't catch the last part of what she said.

"Wait ya remember e'erythin'?" Ranma asked hopefully.

"Yeah everything came flooding back when the bridge broke." Akane said nodding her head.

"Oh. Well we should get camp set up since it looks like it's gonna rain." Ranma said looking up at the sky before putting his cup down and standing up.

"I can't." Akane said so quietly Ranma almost didn't hear her.

"Why not?" Ranma asked worried.

"I think my leg is broken." Akane said nodding down toward it.

"Let me see." Ranma said as he leaned down to check the damage. "Yep looks like it's broken. We need ta get that splinted and get ya warmed up." Ranma said as he looked around for something to use as a splint.

"I need to set it, it's gonna hurt." Ranma warned as he looked up at her.

"I'm ready." Akane assured him as she bit down on a stick that had been lying near her. As Ranma set the bone back into place, Akane's screamed echoed around them.

"What's wrong?" Mu tsu asked Ryoga when he noticed he had stopped.

"Thought I heard something." Ryoga said with a shrug as he started down the hill again.

"We're almost at the base. We'll make camp there, the storm's going to hit any minute." Genma called back as the wind was starting to pick up around them.

"There that should hold ya 'til we get ya ta Tofu for a cast." Ranma said as he finished splinting up her leg.

"I saw a hot spring close by while I was getting the wood. Let's put ya in for a soak while I set up camp." Ranma said as he picked her up and started walking away from the waterfall.

"There ya go." Ranma said with a smile as he set her down on the edge of it. "Here's a towel, ya should get out of the clothes. Ya can change when I brin' ya back ta camp. Gonna go set it up now. Just holler if ya need anythin'." Ranma said as he headed back toward camp.

Akane quickly undressed and wrapped the towel around herself before getting in the hot water. Ranma made his way back to their packs and started taking out the tent and quickly set it up.

After putting the bags inside, he took out their sleeping bags and opened them up so they could share them. Soon as he had everything set up, he headed back outside and got a fire going to make them some dinner.
"We'll have to stop here." Genma informed them just minutes after reaching the bottom of the cliff as the winds picked up and the first drops of rain started to fall.

By the time they had the first tent set up, they had all transformed. Genma-panda just shook his head as he held open the tent flap for the smaller animals and then followed them in. Setting up a portable cooking stove, Genma-panda started heating up some water for the three of them.

"'Kane!" Ranma called as he headed toward the hot springs.

"What's wrong Ranma?" Akane called back as she turned toward him.

"The rain's gonna start any minute we need ta get ya inside." Ranma said as he picked her up out of the water and started heading back toward camp. Entering the tent, he set Akane down and handed her bag.

"Gonna get dinner before it gets wet, go ahead and change into some dry clothes." Ranma told her as he headed out of the tent.

"We'll set out first thing in the morning, hopefully the storm will have passed by then. For now let's eat and get some sleep." Genma said as he worked on making dinner for them.

"Sounds good to me." Ryoga said as Genma handed him a plate of food.

"Eat up and then we should try ta get some sleep." Ranma said as he handed Akane her food before sitting down next to her with his own.

"I wonder if the others are okay." Akane said as she listened to the sound of the rain pelting off of the tent.

"I'm sure they're fine. Pop may not be good at much else but he knows his way around the out doors." Ranma said with a laugh as he finished off his plate and put it in the bag with Akane's.

"Let's get some sleep." Ranma said as he picked Akane up and laid her down on the sleeping bag before laying down himself and covering them up with the other.

"Good night Ranma." Akane said softly as she curled up next to him.

"Good night 'Kane." Ranma whispered as he kissed her lightly on the cheek before closing his eyes.

"How do you think they are doing Sugar?" Ukyo asked looking over at Shan Pu who she was sharing a tent with.

"They okay. Ranma take care of Akane." Shan Pu said as she rolled over and looked at her.

"Oh I know that, I'm worried about the guys, they are being led by the idiot dad of Ran-chan's." Ukyo said with a laugh.

"Oh. Shan Pu think they know not listen to stupid panda-man." Shan Pu said laughing.

Now where's the restroom around here? Ryoga wondered to himself as he stood up and headed out of the tent. Not thinking to take his umbrella, since he was still half asleep, the moment he walked out of the tent he transformed into a little black pig.

"Bwee?" The pig wondered as he started heading off in the direction he thought the tent was, had he bothered to turn around he would have seen it right behind him, but had he done that then he wouldn't have been Ryoga the eternal lost boy. So instead he started off down the river away from the tent instead of toward it.

Early in the morning, a few days later, Ranma awoke after hearing sounds of something moving outside of the tent. Careful to make sure he didn't wake Akane, he quietly climbed out of the tent and looked around to find P-chan walking around the pond.

"Was wondering if you would show up." Ranma said with a laugh as he walked over to him and picked the pig up off the ground.

"Bwee?" The pig asked as he looked up at Ranma.

"She's sleepin'. Let's get ya some warm water so we can talk." Ranma said as he headed off toward the hot springs.

"What's P-chan doing here?" Akane wondered as she rubbed her eyes before grabbing the crutches Ranma had made for her and started out of the tent. Akane followed along behind them and made it to the hot springs just in time for Ranma to drop P-chan in.

Just as she was about to yell at Ranma for picking on her pet, Ryoga's head cleared the surface of the water. Akane just stared at him for a minute before turning and heading back to camp.

"So how long ago did ya lose them?" Ranma asked as he handed Ryoga an out fit to put on.

"About three days. The girls and Mr. Tendo are up top of the cliff. Only your dad, Mu Tsu and me came looking for you, the others stayed back to watch out for Kasumi and Nabiki." Ryoga informed him as he began dressing.

"So how long before ya got lost?" Ranma asked laughing as they started heading back to camp.

"It's not important." Ryoga grunted as they sat down around the camp fire and Ranma began making them some tea.

"No really how long?" Ranma asked handing him his cup.

"That night okay?" Ryoga asked taking a sip of his tea.

"Figures." Ranma laughed as Akane came out of the tent.

"Good morning Akane." Ryoga said looking over at her.

"Morning." Akane said as she started getting supplies out of her bag and started breakfast. "Is it just us three this morning?" Akane asked looking around as she started cooking.

"Yeah from the looks of thin's they should be about two or three days behind Ryoga." Ranma said with a nod.

"What happened to your leg?" Ryoga asked nodding to the splint.

"I broke it." Akane explained coolly not bothering to look up at him. Ranma and Ryoga exchanged looks and just shrugged their shoulders.

"Think it's time we get some sleep." Ranma said later that night as he picked Akane up and started toward the tent.

"Alright but P-chan can sleep outside." Akane called over her shoulder making sure Ryoga heard her. Ranma looks back at Ryoga, who's eyes are not the size of beach balls, but neither can offer an explanation. Turning back, Ranma headed into the tent and place Akane down on the sleeping bag.

"How long?" Ranma asked as he grabbed an extra blanket out of his bag.

"The hot springs." Akane said looking up at him.

"Look 'Kane..." Ranma started but Akane raised her hand and interrupted him.

"I don't want to talk about it tonight. I'll deal with this after we are back home." Akane said as she rolled over and closed her eyes. Ranma just nodded and headed back out of the tent with the blanket.

"Here man. It's not much but it should keep ya warm as long as it doesn't rain and ya stay close to the fire." Ranma explained as he handed Ryoga the blanket.

"How?" Was all Ryoga could say.

"She saw me drop ya in the hot springs. She says she'll deal with it when we get back home. And I'm not gonna cover ya on this one man. Ya gotta fix this ya self" Ranma said as he turned and started back for the tent.

"I know Ranma and I'll take responsibility for all of it. I wont let this fall on you Ranma." Ryoga assured him.

"Good it's about time ya take responsibility for your actions." Ranma said with a laugh before he ducked back into the tent.

"About time ya guys get here." Ranma said with a laugh a few days later when he walked out of the tent to find Genma and Mu tsu talking with Ryoga.

"You two okay boy?" Genma asked turning toward him.

"'Kane's got a broken leg, other then that we're both good." Ranma said as Akane was coming out of the tent. "Let's get this packed up and get outta here." Ranma said nodding to the tent as he started packing it up with the help of Ryoga and Mu tsu.

"Ryoga can ya carry 'Kane's bag?" Ranma asked as he shouldered his own and picked Akane up.

"I can walk you know." Akane said shaking her head.

"It'll be faster this way and besides it's gonna be hard for ya to walk up hill with the crutches." Ranma informed her as he turned to Mu tsu.

"Mu Tsu would ya mind carrying those in case she needs them?" Ranma asked nodding toward the crutches.

"Sure Saotome." Mu tsu said with a nod as he picked them up and they started following Genma back toward the others.

"And that's when Pop and Mu tsu showed up." Ranma said as he finished telling the others what had happened as they sat around the fire back at the camp with the girls.

"Well soon as we get back we'll get a cast on that leg and Akane will be back to normal in no time." Nodoka said with a smile as she passed out plates of food.

"P-chan can I have my bag?" Akane asked turning toward Ryoga.

"Sure." Ryoga said as he reached over and handed it to her.

"What an odd nickname." Nodoka said confused as she looked over at Ranma hoping he would explain it.

"Oh my." Kasumi whispered as everyone looked around at each other.

"So everyone but Aunt Nodoka knew?" Akane asked searching everyone's faces.

"Knew what?" Nodoka asked looking back over at Akane. Akane picked up her glass of water and dumped it on Ryoga turning him into P-chan.

"Oh dear." Nodoka said shaking her head.

"We are ALL going to have a long chat when we get home." Akane warned everyone as she started eating her dinner.