Magical Girl Pretty Ruri
By Tailkinker and Kitsy
*DISCLAIMER* Warning: Java compilation error. Insufficient coffee. Due to this, none of the characters, situations and sites belong to the authors of this story. They are currently just used to explore the effects of sleep deprivation. “I’ve never gone to a normal school. At this rate, I never will. My classmates are falling in love with whatever males seem available - Dark Generals, Cooks, whatever - my teacher has less personality than a TRS-80, and on top of everything else, I had to fight in Magical Girl form in front of my classmates. And they still don’t recognize me. “And now it seems my mother is trying to marry me off... “Baka bakka.” Tail Kinker and Kitsy present Magical Girl Pretty Ruri Episode Eight: *BOOM!* “Omoikane...damage report?” “Huh?” The cat yawned and hopped off the bed. Ruri blinked, slowly coming awake, and remembered where she was. There was a flash of light and another rolling boom, and she jumped out of bed, grabbing her Henshin in a reflex action. “Mars Guardian, Make-UP!” The light seared her eyes, all blue and gold. The air around her rippled, and she felt waves of incredible heat pounding her. Her clothes shredded and re-formed into the blue skirt, tight-fitting golden bodysuit and long blue boots and gloves. The tiara formed on her brow, and the Henshin lengthened to quarterstaff proportions. “Calm down, Ruri. It’s just a thunderstorm.” “Huh?” She looked outside, and saw the rain pouring down. “Oh. Baka.” She allowed the transformation to lapse, reverting back to her bedclothes. “Good thing it woke you up...with your reliable alarm clock, chances are you’d end up late again.” “I guess so...” She picked up her watch and squinted at it. “Looks like I’m going to be late anyway. It’s eight oh five.” “Um...” “AAAHHH!!! I’m gonna be late!” Ruri blinked. “Hey, Mom, isn’t that my line?” Usagi ran past Ruri’s door, struggling into a sweater. SBye Ruri I gotta go to work there’s taxi fare on the table see you after school!” “Uh, Mom...” Ruri stepped outside her room, to hear the front door slam. She shook her head. “Give her a minute.” “ACK!” The door opened, and Usagi ran back in. “Sorry, forgot something...” She ran upstairs and back into her room. “Yeah...like a skirt.” Omoikane smirked. “Or anything else besides the sweater.” “At least it was a long sweater.” “Not from this angle.” “Hentai.” * * * * * Ruri scowled at the notice posted on the school door. *All classes canceled today due to power failure* “Great. Just marvellous.” She sneezed. “Ruri! What are you doing here!” Ruri looked over at Megumi. “I didn’t know that school was cancelled. For that matter, why are you here?” “I was on my way to the Ice Cream Parlor. Houmei’s having a half-price sale before it all melts.” “Ah.” “Why didn’t you know about classes being cancelled? It was announced on the radio.” “Yes...and none of our radios had power.” Megumi laughed, and held up her portable radio. “Let’s go! Tons of ice cream to be eaten, portable entertainment, and...” She grinned slyly. “Akito is there!” “You’ve talked me into it.” She patted her pocket. “Mom gave me taxi fare, and I walked here...” “In the rain?” “I’ve never really walked in the rain before.” She smiled. “It’s a new experience for me.” “Passing a test would be a new experience for you. Why don’t you try that?” “ANYWAY, I have a fair chunk of money that can now be spent on ice cream.” “Gotta keep your priorities straight, eh?” “Baka.” “You know, I bet it’s just that you don’t have the sense to come in out of the rain...” * * * * * Ruri and Megumi sat at the counter in the ice cream parlor, shivering slightly. The storm had brought some much- needed cooling to the city, but for two small girls sitting in an ice cream parlor in soaking wet clothes...well, at least with the city blacked out, the air conditioning wasn’t running. Megumi had set up her radio, and though the music was tinny through the rather minuscule speaker, it brought a bit of cheer to the restaurant. Akito set what looked like a flower vase full of ice cream in front of Ruri. She eyed it suspiciously; the dish was a foot and a half tall, and six inches across at the top, the ice cream was three different colours, there were four kinds of nuts in layers in it, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, a cherry and a small red and black bamboo-and-paper umbrella. She looked up at Akito. “What exactly is this?” “Your usual.” “How...how do you eat it?” Akito laughed. “I don’t. It gives me cavities just to look at it. You, on the other hand, usually just inhale it.” Ruri blushed faintly. Megumi handed her a spoon. “Dig in!” “I need a shovel.” “Most of us would agree with you.” She turned to Akito. “Just a chocolate sundae for me...I’m not a glutton.” She smirked. “Really, Tenkawa-san...I don’t see what you see in her.” Ruri’s blush deepened. “Megumi...that was uncalled for.” “I agree.” Akito snapped his notebook shut. “It should be obvious.” Ruri looked up in panic. “Oh, really?” Megumi leaned towards him, resting her chin on her hands. “Go on.” “Aheh...” Akito rubbed the back of his head. “I...ummm...Oh, yeah!” He reached under the counter, and pulled out a pamphlet. “This came in the mail today. It’s a contest.” “The pamphlet is a contest?” “No! The TV station is running a talent search. They’re looking for voice actresses for a new anime, and Hayashibara Megumi’s busy. I thought you two might be interested.” Ruri blinked. “Why us?” “Well, you sing very well.” He shrugged. “You both have great voices.” Ruri’s blush was not going away. ~I just can’t win...~ “And besides, Houmei wants me to tell all the girls that come in.” “Okay.” Megumi nudged Ruri. “Let’s go for it! It’ll be fun. Just like the karaoke!” That made up her mind. “No thank you.” “Ruri!” The door burst open, and Yurika stumbled into the restaurant, panting. “I really need your help!” Ruri glanced over at Yurika. The other girl was dripping wet, and gasping for breath. Ruri put a hand in her pocket, grabbing the Kasei no Henshin, and ran outside. “Where are you going?” Ruri paused. “I thought...” “I really need your help! Please?” It dawned upon Ruri that it was nothing so simple as a golem attack. “All right, what do you need my help with?” “Well, there’s this big talent contest going on, and they’re looking for voice actresses...” “Oh, no...” “You’ve already heard of it?” “Sadly, yes.” She sat back down at the counter. “Well, I need your help to get ready for it. Besides, you’re a good singer.” “Baka.” Megumi leaned over. “Just ask Akito! He’s heard her sing.” Yurika’s demeanour turned frosty. “Oh, yes, that’s right. Never mind...I can get by without your help.” She turned and stormed off to another corner of the restaurant. Megumi smirked. “She’s gonna kick herself when she realizes Akito was standing just behind us...” Ruri almost smiled. “And she didn’t even see him.” * * * * * Tsukumo signed the form and handed it back to the secretary. He sighed. When he had conceived this plan, he had not foreseen the tremendous amount of paperwork and drudgery needed to keep it afloat. But it was absolutely necessary, and so far was running smoothly. --- “Our master is not pleased, Tsukumo.” Genichiro had stepped out of the shadows and was blocking Tsukumo’s path. “Our energy reserves are low, and the rate at which you are using up Golems is proving...troublesome.” “I was told by Prince Akara that I was to cease collecting ki until Pretty Ruri was eliminated.” “You have failed to eliminate her! If we do not collect some ki soon, we will lose the ability to strike across the Barrier.” Tsukumo scowled at Genichiro. “And if we start a harvesting operation, and lose the OverGolem to Ruri? We are no further ahead than if we had simply attempted to kill her. And all of our attempts to kill her have failed. You have not discovered where we can catch her unprepared, so all I can do is stake out bait.” “Your tone is...less than subservient. We have insufficient ki to make more than one more attack. You *must* succeed on a ki-gathering mission. Only after that can we spare the energy to attack Pretty Ruri.” --- Tsukumo was snapped out of his reverie by the door of his “office” opening. He looked up, to see three young girls walking in. He noted that one of them was the girl he had earlier mistaken for Pretty Ruri. The other two he didn’t recognize. “Wow! You’re the photographer for the Gleaner, right? You work for the television company as well?” Tsukumo recovered quickly, and thanked the Kami that he was dressed in a manner similar to the previous day. “Well, yes. TV Tokyo and Xebec hired me for my scouting abilities. The Gleaner manager didn’t mind, he just told me that I’d better get some good prints of the event. Now then, you’re here for the contest, right?” Ruri was nervous; if Tsukumo was organizing this thing, it was going to be a ki-stealing and Golem smashing extravaganza. Yurika looked equally concerned. She poked Ruri. “Umm...I’m not so sure that this is a good idea, Ruri.” Tsukumo looked up in shock. ~Ruri?~ ~Baka. How to defuse this...~ Ruri smacked Yurika. “Ite!” “But I’ve been waiting all day to come here! This is my big chance - my big break to actually be someone!” Megumi blinked. “Uh...do you have a fever?” “But I always wanted to be a voice actress! I could get a role, like the computer operator on a space battleship. Like Sammy Porter in Macross.” Yurika twitched. “No. I couldn’t see it.” Tsukumo deflated somewhat. ~This can’t be her. Magical Girl Pretty Ruri is...competent.~ Megumi looked at her oddly. “Space battleship? Ruri, you have yet to pass an astronomy test, or successfully use any computer except your game boy. And you want to be on a battleship?” “Oh, come on! Who cares about that? You don’t need an education to be a voice actress!” ~Damn, it’s less fun to tease her when she has no idea what I mean...~ Yurika was looking at her oddly. “Ruri...I think maybe you’re overreacting a little...no, make that a lot.” “But everyone knows that a voice actress has to show passion!” “Not with MY Akito, you little tramp!” Ruri bounded up to the desk and leaned across it. “Hello, sir! Can I apply for the tryouts as well? We were told to come here to collect our numbers and our mini- scripts! Wow, you’re really cool! Are you the judge?” Megumi sweated. She turned to Yurika. “Now I know how you feel!” Yurika nodded. “The minx.” “Ruri, leave Tsukumo alone! You have Akito. Tsukumo’s mine!” She paused, and though about where she had just said that. “I mean...” Tsukumo was sweating. ~And this was supposed to be just a quick and easy ki grab...~ * * * * * “Ruri...are you serious about all this?” “No.” “Then why are you...” “Do you think I want him knowing what I look like? Thanks to you and that big mouth of yours...” “Oh, so that was just an act?” “Well, these are voice tryouts, right?” “Very funny.” Ruri smirked. She just knew that Tsukumo was up to something . And this way, she’d be able to find out what it was. Megumi finished her song and set the microphone in its stand. She walked over to the other two girls. “Wow, that really took a lot out of me.” Ruri’s eyes narrowed. “Like you’re low on energy?” “Yeah. I guess ice cream isn’t the best breakfast food.” Yurika stifled a giggle. “Number three-forty-three.” Megumi nudged Ruri. “That would be you.” “Wow, this thing must have been going on forever.” Yurika looked around the room. There were several girls in seats around the audition stage, perhaps sixty or so, but all of them seemed to be asleep. She glanced over at Megumi, and realized that the other girl was also asleep. “Umm...Yurika...let’s go get changed.” “I thought this was a voice part. Why do we need costumes? Oh.” Ruri grabbed Yurika and dragged her out the back door. “Oh, it looks like three-forty-three is giving up. Number three-forty-four.” * * * * * “Mars Guardian, Make-UP!” “Mars Warrior, Make-UP!” The light seared Ruri’s eyes, all blue and gold. The air around her rippled, and she felt waves of incredible heat pounding her. Her clothes shredded and re-formed into the blue skirt, tight-fitting golden bodysuit and long blue boots and gloves. The tiara formed on her brow, and the Henshin lengthened to quarterstaff proportions. Yurika’s body was all a-glitter, no details visible to the eye. Flames seemed to dance around her, burning the clothing off of her, then reforming itself into a short red skirt, white bodysuit, thigh-height red boots, elbow-length red gloves and the bow at the back, red and white striped. Her hair lightened, and shifted to a flame-red colour. A silver tiara, with a single red gem centered in it, appeared on her brow. The Henshin lengthened and curved in on itself, becoming a silver bow. * * * * * Tsukumo leaned back in his director’s chair and scribbled notes in his folder. “Not bad. Not bad at all.” The assistant leaned over to him. “Are you kidding? She’s the worst yet.” Tsukumo spoke quietly. “Do you expect me to tell her that to her face? What, do you think I’m going to say to her, ‘Please clear the stage, and hopefully the seventeen dogs you called will go with you?’ Sorry. My life is worth more to me than that.” “Hey, better you than me.” “That’s the attitude!” Tsukumo made a vague gesture with his free hand. “Next.” The lights flashed, angling above the stage. “For preying on the dreams and hopes of all these young girls, for stealing their energy under the guise of...of...of...” “Well?” “Damn. Give me a second. Oh, yeah! Under the guise of a new life and a new beginning as an actress and a star, you shall be punished!” The floodlight snapped on, highlighting Yurika on the stage. Yurika threw her hand forward, two fingers raised. SV!” The assistant flipped through his notes. “Not bad, but the Magical Girl auditions are three doors down the hall. And costume is optional.” Tsukumo pulled out his cell phone. “Is the transfer complete? Good. I need you here.” He snapped it shut, and made a vague gesture with his free hand. “Next.” “Next?!” Yurika stared at him. “What do you mean, next!?! We’re here to stop your evil plan!” “Okay, fine. Next, please.” “Are you serious?” “No. If I was serious, there would be some sort of explosion, and a monster would jump out of the sound booth.” *BOOM* “Kind of like that.” The Golem landed in front of Yurika. It had four legs and two arms, and an angular head with some sort of nozzle- like protrubence. It was covered in red and green fur. “Flare Arrow!” Yurika raised the bow, and pulled back the string. A flaming arrow appeared at her fingertips. She aimed at the Golem, and let it fly. The Golem raised its head and spat out a gob of thread. The gob intercepted the arrow, destroying both. “Oh, that’s not good.” “No, actually it’s great.” Tsukumo leaned over to the assistant. “Are you getting all of this?” “Just don’t break the camera! It’s a rental; I’d lose my deposit.” “Flare Punch!” Yurika’s fist glowed a bright orange, and there was a blast of light when she hit the golem. It staggered back, seemingly dazed, then spat another wad of thread at her. It exploded outward on impact, pasting her to the back wall. The Golem lost no time in applying more webbing, doing its best to cocoon Yurika. “Well, that didn’t take long.” Tsukumo stood up and walked over to Yurika. “In fact, it was altogether too easy. Now what I want to know is, where is your partner? Where is Magical Girl Pretty Ruri?” “Right behind you.” Tsukumo whirled, to see Pretty Ruri, plasma pistol trained steadily on him. “You know, that might not be the best place to stand.” “Huh?” “Well, the golem behind you has a nice clear shot at you. But I’m worried that the blast might get my suit dirty.” “Your OverGolem is right there, holding my partner prisoner. And a lesser golem cannot penetrate my Distortion Field.” “Ah, yes. You’re quite right. That’s why I brought two OverGolems.” *SPLAT* “Oh, great.” “Ruri, do you never think to check your six?” “What do I look like, a pilot?” Tsukumo laughed. “What a marvellous day! A full load of ki already sent to the Dark World--” “The Dark World? Weren’t they the bad guys in Sailor Moon?” “Dark *World*! Not Dark Kingdom! And certainly not the Negaverse!” “Same thing.” “Well, at any rate, the Master will be pleased, now that I’ve captured both of you.” “I don’t see why.” The assistant shook his head. “The Board of Directors already has enough Magical Girl series.” “Baka.” Tsukumo waved towards the OverGolems. “Bring them here.” The Golems picked up the girls and dropped them in front of Tsukumo. He stepped forward and reached for Ruri’s tiara. “Once I remove this, I’ll know for certain who you are...” “Blazing Slash!” The massive sword glowed a dull red, and as Tuxedo Ken swung it, it left a trail of fire in the air. It cut effortlessly through the silk that imprisoned the girls. “Ite! Ite! Ite! Hot! Hot!” “Would you rather be tied up again?” Tuxedo Ken landed lightly in front of Tsukumo. He snapped around in a brutal circle kick, knocking the Dark General across the room. He turned to Ruri. “Finish the Golems!” Ruri held the quarterstaff in front of her, eyes closed. A wind began to swirl around her, and her hair fluttered, drawn out to its full length. She opened her eyes, swept the staff around her and brought it to rest, pointing directly at the two. “Gravity Blast!” A black field of energy formed around the tip of the staff, then flowed down to encompass Ruri completely. It swelled outward, and exploded into a cone of black energy. Tsukumo staggered to his feet. “Well, I managed to complete my mission, at least.” He smirked, and faded out. “What did he mean?” Tuxedo Ken looked around the room. “He managed to drain almost three hundred people before you got here. He didn’t drain them for too much; most of them seem to have simply left under their own power. But this was a major victory for the Dark World.” “Damn.” Ruri sighed. “I should have acted the instant I knew he was here.” “But you couldn’t, Ruri.” Yurika set a hand on her shoulder. “You didn’t know what was going on, and you couldn’t blow your cover.” “No.” Ruri scowled at Yurika. “That’s what I have you for.” “Aheh...sorry.” * * * * * Yurika dropped into the beanbag chair. Ruri stared at her. “What?” “That’s my chair.” “So sit on the bed. Or that cute little pink chair by the computer.” Ruri sat on the bed. “What a day.” The phone next to the computer rang. Minutes later, Usagi knocked on the door. “Ruri? Megumi just called. Apparently, the studio liked her audition. Her parents are taking her out for dinner tonight, and she wants you to call her later. She says she got a part-time job!” “Ummm...thanks, Mom.” Ruri winced. “I wonder how disappointed she’ll be when she learns that Tsukumo doesn’t work there?” “What I want to know, is why the TV station had power when the rest of Nerima didn’t.” “You think they don’t have their own generators? Also, in all likelihood, it was on a different grid.” “Oh.” The phone rang again. And again, Usagi knocked on the door. “Ruri? Akito’s on the phone. He wants to talk to you.” “Akito!” Yurika jumped up and ran for the door. “Gimme the phone! He doesn’t want to talk to Ruri; he wants to talk to me!” “Are you sure? After all the time he’s spent with Ruri recently--” “WAAAHHHH!!!!” Ruri smiled, and picked up the phone. * * * * * Author’s Notes: For those not in the know, Hayashibara Megumi is the most prolific voice actress in Japan, having done somewhere in the neighborhood of seventy roles. Among her most famous roles are: Nuku Nuku APCCG Nuku Nuku Kitty Hello Kitty Faye Valentine Cowboy Bebop Ayanami Rei Neon Genesis Evangelion Pen Pen Neon Genesis Evangelion Masaki Achika Tenchi Muyo In Love Amano Ai Video Girl Ai Saotome Ranma Ranma 1/2 As far as we can tell, she did not appear in Mobile Battleship Nadesico (though she had a bit part in Sailor Moon...) [Tail Kinker] Step aside, Kitsy. The co-author with the 120 wpm typing speed and built-in spellchecker is taking the conn...the creative co-author must step aside... [Kitsy] Yes, yes...creativity must take a back seat for this ‘fic...:) Comments and Criticism can be sent to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. Flames can be sent to Gainax. We just saw the last episode of Neon Genesis Evangelion. Bad ending. Very bad. The story can be found at www.geocities.com/groves_ca and at members.home.net/kitsy. 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