|Ranma vs the Tank|
Another typical morning in the Usual Restaurant. Some random people sit around the room in various booths. A few more random people sit at the bar. It's all very, very random - and by that we mean the exact same as any other afternoon. With a soft ding the front door swings open and a dusty man in a pair of goggles and heavy clothing marches in. Removing his hood and the goggles in one fell swipe, the man is revealed as Ranma Saotome - missing from Twisted for the better part of the past couple of years. Where the hell has he been?
Making a bee-line to the bar, Ranma takes a seat and throws a triumphant fist in the air. "HAAA-HAA! Finally!" People look and stare. "I FINALLY got rid of the old geezer!" So apparently that's where he's been.
The bartender glances at Ranma and pushes some green hair out of her eyes. "That supposed ta mean something?"
Ranma blinks and lowers his head. "J-just gimmie a glass of water or somethin'." Well that took the wind out of his sails.
Meanwhile, the real heroine of our story arrives with a tremendous crash across the street, detonating a sprinkler system as the vessel of her dimensional transference immolates one of Twisted's ever-changing shop fronts. The shopkeeper runs off screaming as a burst of 5.56mm fills the air, along with a series of wild screams in a distinctly PO'd Australian accent.
"BLOODY! FUCKING! KIWI TESTICLES! AAAAARRGGGGHHH! BOLLOCKS!!"
Yep, it's a morning like any other. Shouldering the girth of her customized assault rifle (with underslung grenade launcher and a convenient fag holder that definitely isn't supposed to be a night vision scope), the inimitable Tank Girl stomps her combat-booted foot down onto the surface of Twisted Street for the first time in history. "I need..." She looks around at the carnage her falling tank has caused, smacking her lips thoughtfully and pausing to puff the stray bang of dirty blonde out of her eyes. This is important; she's otherwise bald, making that one strand extra irritating all by itself.
"Lager, dear girl?" Replies a second voice from somewhere above her eyeline.
"...right," she agrees, emphatically, "Lager for breakfast! And none of that Spunk bollocks!"
"Ooh, I don't know, I'm rather partial to some spunky bollocks..."
Rebecca Buck makes a disgusted face, lifting her free hand up to slam a rather bent cigarette between her cracked lips. Her bloodshot eyes flick heavenward, trying in vain to meet the eyes of the leering stuffed animal perching on her skull. "I liked you better when you were dead, Camp Koala."
A moment later, the door of the Usual Restaurant is opened again - with a BANG. No, she doesn't blow it up, she just kicks it open and strides in, the heavy assault weapon clack-clacking against her bare shoulder. The patrons get to be thoroughly distracted from long-suffering Ranma Saotome, as TG stands there in all her mostly-naked splendor. Aside from her combat boots, she's wearing a stained set of undies, including a bra that's seen better days; if one really wants to linger in examination (and a few pairs of eyes do) it looks like she wrestled a landmine and won. No nipples though, sorry fellas. Just the smooth outline of charred flesh and the artfully clinging fragments of underwired upholstery.
"Well, this looks like a fine establishment and no mistake! And do I espy a little bit of what I fancy--"
Breathing out a profuse cloud of wretched smoke around her cigarette, TG reaches up, grabs the stuffed koala, and launches him across the room, where he bounces off the wall and lands in the middle of a conveniently-placed basketball hoop supported by one of the resident skutters. Rebecca doesn't even look, grabbing her smouldering roll-up and yoinking it from her mouth as she stomps toward the bar and comes to a halt beside Ranma.
"Geezers, am I right? Ooooh--- vodka, that'll do for a warm-up! Don't mind if do!"
Without so much as a by-her-leave she grabs the glass of water in the moment it's set down. Gulp.
Well, that happened. The door being kicked open, fine. The conveniently placed hoop and the casually-if-perfectly-thrown stuffed animal? Fine. Normal. It's the rest of the package and the before mentioned lack thereof covering it that has Ranma frozen in place with his hands making gestures not wholly unlike what they'd call 'devil horns' in the metal music circuits. He stands confused on one foot, his other bent against the first's calf as he watches the woman make herself at home in record time. This isn't something he's used to and for a moment pure panic screams its way through his brain. Somehow it's her stealing his drink that brings him slightly out of his trance.
"W-wait. That's not vodka. What th' heck lady? Ain'tcha got no modesty?" He's one to talk. It hasn't been that long since he streaked around topless as a woman back in Japan yelling about wearing frilly clothes. Of course that's a whole other world away. "I have some clothes in my backpack." He indicates towards the floor where he'd dropped it. "Just gimmie a second and I'll loan you somethin'. Heck, you can keep it." He's a nice guy, right? No? Shut up Dante, you're not even in this scene.
Or not gulp, as it happens.
Ranma is still rattling out his panicked diatribe as our lewd, crude heroine just stands there with her cheeks puffed out like a hamster and circuits slowly firing in her brain. A quick cutaway - for the benefit of the readers - shows an elderly woman in the frontal lobe taking her sweet time on Tank Girl's neural switchboard. Somewhere in the rear, her libido is having a drinking contest with her id while her ego looks on, laughing, but let's not worry too much about the nitty gritty details of Rebecca Buck's brain. What's important, dear reader, is that her baby blues roll toward Ranma and then widen in dawning alarm as her tongue is finally able to radio back to base and confirm the horrible truth.
It's really *not* vodka. Oh shit! Abort! ABORT!
"PFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFffffFFFFFffffffFFFFF--" Becky darling goes from teasing her long-departed gag reflex with the impending act of swallowing a mouthful of sweet, sweet alcohol, to spraying out a mouthful of disgusting H2O like a human super soaker, right in the face of Ranma Saotome. The scene should probably be played back in slow-motion, as the universe plays a terrible prank on the both of them. For her part... "FUCK!!"
It ends in a disgusted bellow, and then she's diving over the bar to grab the waitress by the lapels and shake her to and fro, screaming.
"LAGER! I NEED SOME BLOODY LAGER! I'VE BEEN POISONED!!"
Ranchan stands dripping and feeling more disgusted than she can ever remember. Did we miss a page? The torrent of water has melted away Ranma's masculinity leaving a red-haired girl in his wake. As she stands in total confusion muttering, "...there wasn't that much water in the glass?" The bartender is having a much crazier time fending off the 'dying' woman shaking her for alcohol. As soon as she's able she'll make a frantic sprint for the door - leaving Rebecca behind the bar regardless of how big of a mistake it may be.
Wiping off her face and trying to wring out her clothes Ranma calls out to Tank Girl, "Hey why don'tcha leave her alone?" ...aaand she's gone in a green-haired blur. "Oh. Okay, nevermind." What else can you do at this point? Look for warm water probably.
"YOU'VE GOTTA HELP M--urk!"
With a crash, Rebecca falls headfirst to the floor as her target and simultaneous support railing makes a bolt for it, a banging hangover and a small concussion contributing to what feels like the detonation of a micro-nuke. Fortunately, this wipes out the doddery old woman erstwhile responsible for routing our heroine's thoughts, and when she pops back up with a huff of breath and a scowling glare she actually seems, if anything, rather more alert. She's also shrugging on a leather jacket that she's seemingly produced from nowhere. On either breast are picked out, in middle studs, the letters 'UR' - on the left - and 'BITCH', on the right.
TG settles into a garment with a sigh, then retrieves her fallen assault rifle and slams it down on the bartop. "Listen up, you primitive screwheads, this is--" She stops in mid-sentence, her mouth open and one eye squinting as she stares with aghast confusion at the previously dark-haired... well, there's no two ways about it, that's not the same fucking person, is it? What do you even say? She settles for: "Tits?!"
And then thinks twice about it, scratching at her cheek with one dirty-nailed hand. She tries squinting the other eye for a better look at Ranma, but is unable to reach any particular conclusion not explicable without the addition of a few hundred cc's of pure alcohol. "Right then! Camp Koala! All is forgiven-- scouting mission for ya; verify the authenticity - or otherwise - of this young lady's business end, and make your report! Meanwhile--"
There's a frantic scrabbling from beneath Ranma's seat, and then the scruffy stuffed toy is attempting to bury his leering, manic face in her chest.
"I'll proceed to get absolutely rat-arsed!"
Having an uncanny knack for knowing when someone is about to strike, Ranma's eyes manage to notice the skuttering toy before it manages to pounce on him. Unfortunately being who this is, she promptly fails to react to it in a defensive manner and instead points and screams, "What the heck is tha-AAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!" And by this point the crazed looking bear has already reached its destination. At least she can hit hard and manages to punch it downwards to the floor with a strength that would have probably taken a door off its hinges. Can you actually hurt a stuffed animal?
Leaping back, Ranma shakes her head and falls into a defensive stance finally expecting the doll to pull a Happosai and promptly lunge at her chest again. "Okay! That's enough! Who are you, what is that, and what the heck do you think your doing?!" These are valid questions. Someone else should have probably asked them but most of the customers are so used to this most of them don't even run for the door. Typical.
"Oh, bloody h---"
Camp Koala isn't just dismissed, but driven with -authority- into an impact crater that sends a ripple of force across the floor. The establishment being where it is, the damage is swiftly amended by a billion tiny nanites, but the end result is still a smouldering stuffed animal, facedown on the floor with its lascivious tongue protruding to one side. He seems to be drooling, too. Definitely a toy, though, yep. Don't question it.
Meanwhile, Rebecca has poured the trace content of several bottles with thoroughly alien labels into a cocktail shaker, her own recently-cleaned tongue protruding from one corner of her mouth with the utmost air of concentration as she works. So intent is she on her work that when Ranma questions her, it takes a moment for the realisation to sink in. TG looks up with a blink and a sudden, shit-eating grin.
"Who, me?" She asks, jabbing a thumb back into her frazzled chest - now fortunately 50% less visible through unlikely application of her newest garment. "Just your friendly neighbourhood bounty hunter! Tank Girl! And I'm making breakfast!" When this fails to get any recognition whatsoever - why would it? - she crumples up her brow and slaps the lid back on the cocktail shaker, shaking it as she continues with obvious disappointment. "You haven't bloody heard of me?! I bet you haven't heard of Camp Koala either, but that's fine, he's a wanker..."
Shakeshakeshake. Something goes *foom* within the metal confines of the shaker, and Rebecca hurriedly uncaps it and downs the contents.
Flames lick around her mouth before she wipes it clean with the back of her other hand, exuding a profound belch. This burns up half the room's oxygen.
"Camp Koala," she concludes, leaning forward to look at the smouldering wreckage of her long-time pet and companion, "I don't think we're in Kansas any more. MORE TO THE POINT--" Looking up abruptly, as the koala replies with a distant 'hrgl...', she squints at Ran-chan. "Who are you, and why have you got a nicer chest than me?"
Since the Koala is momentarily out of commission, Ranma takes the opportunity to relax while she gives her introduction. "I'm Ranma Saotome of the Saotome School of Anything Goes Martial Arts." The second question gets another blush and a glance at the floor. "...and it's a curse." What is? He's bad at explaining necessary information. "This ain't no Kansas either. This is Twisted. It's... a little hard to explain." Yep. Good job. We're all caught up now.
"Tank Girl, huh? I don't see a tank around here." Just keep on leaving openings for more terrifying things to show up. "I don't think we need much of a bounty hunter here either. Are you after someone?" She braves inching closer to the bar again keeping her eyes open for a hot water faucet. There's got to be one somewhere.
"Not much of a curse!" Scoffs our foulmouthed heroine, leaning away from Ranma to squint around the bar looking for something else to drink. Preferably something that won't destroy what remains of the indigenous atmosphere - behind the self-confessed martial artist, a few of the patrons are choking as they find the air much thinner than it was a few moments ago. Helpfully, one of the skutters turns up the aircon. "You can get anything you want with a rack like that - what are you into, men, women? Tanks?" Erm. "I'm not gonna judge. You want a drink?"
Looking back toward the redhead, Rebecca smears a big ol' grin across her face and jerks a thumb toward the floor, "Least I can do, since you shut that old codger up. Been giving me grief ever since he returned from the grave! Oh, er, the tank's parked outside. They don't ticket here, right?"
She pauses, glaring at the front window and the smoking chaos beyond. Somebody seems to be on fire now; probably just a gas line, she reasons, phrasing a shrug and then snatching a random bottle off the back of the bar and taking a swig. "Only thing I'm after is a good drink and somewhere to shag in peace and quiet. Had a bit of trouble getting work since the Second Coming of Christ." Swig. "Ahh! That's the stuff. Tastes absolutely NOTHING like Spunk." Apparently not done running her mouth just yet, TG scratches again at her cheek. "So martial arts, huh? You ever boxed a kangaroo?"
Ranchan spins around and runs to jerk open the front door to look outside, "YOU PARKED A TANK IN THE MIDDLE OF TWISTED STREET?!?" She decides to back up and just shut the door, ignoring the tank and the fires and the screaming idiot in red tights who appears to also be on fire. Instead she sidesteps back to the bar and sits down numbly. Is this something she really wants to try and stop right now? A quick glance is given to the remaining uncaring people in the room. "Nope. Someone else's problem." What a hero.
With a shake of her head Ranma chooses instead to move on to the next question, "A kangaroo?" Wait, she has to think about that. "Noooo. Not yet. A bear, a giant cat ghost, a guy who changed into a pig, a guy who changed into a duck, a guy who changed into a big winged bull-bird-thing..." Seriously? "I don't think I've fought a kangaroo yet. Wait, are we talkin' a real kangaroo or someone cursed to turn into a kangaroo?" Specifics are important.
[OOC] Ranchan elbows Rayne. "Hey. This could be your problem! *sagenod*
The wild exclamation draws only a matter-of-fact nod and a shrug from Rebecca, who sets down her bottle and reaches into the fragmented right cup of her bra, scrabbling around briefly before producing another bent and battered cigarette. Slapping it between her lips, she lights it using a book of matches produced from the pocket of her mysterious 'UR BITCH' jacket. There's a brief stink of sulphur before she flicks the extinguished match away.
She's a lot more interested in the list of battled animals that follows, that broad grin back on her filthy lips and a fire in baby blue eyes. "Fuckin' A," she enthusiastically compliments the redheaded warrior, "Real, fake, what's the difference. How many of them did you sleep with?" That question isn't left to hang long, the frazzled and unwashed punkette distracted by a glint from the corner of her gaze. "NOW we're talking."
Stomping to the other side of the bar, she returns flipping a bottle from hand-to-hand, cigarette dangling nonchalantly from the corner of her mouth as she locates a ceramic bowl and plunks it down in front of Ranma. Sloshing some of the pale liquid from bottle to bowl, she inspects it a moment, sniffs the air and then pronounces her experiment a success. Plucking forth another match, she tosses Ranma another grin over the blaze, this time tossing it fully-lit toward the bowl of rice wine she's just poured. It ignites with a belch of flame that can't be entirely natural, or right.
"Drink a bowl of saké, for goodness sake, then we'll discuss your next fight."
"The hell?!" comes the shout from outside. A few moments later, the door to the UR opens and through it steps a fairly tired looking Rayne Hurris, armored up and everything. "Okay, who parked the tank in the /middle of the street/?" Yes, it seems to be more the fact that the tank is in the middle of the street than that it, well, is there at all, that bothers her. Certianly it doesn't appear that the flaming Freakazoid still running around behind her on fire is bothering her much. Sure, she might not know the guy, but she's heard enough about him to know he'll be okay.
Well, the older looking TASK officer seems slightly more concerned, but only enough to ask if Freakazoid wants to go spit off the Plowse Bridge and see how long it takes to hit the water.
With a huffed out sigh, the rainbow haired officer steps through and glances around. Spotting two at the bar she doesn't recognize, she walks over into their direction and asks, "Does that tank belong to either of you?"
While this is probably something Happosai would have approved of, it's not something Ranma's willing to do and she promptly pushes the bowl back, "Naaaaah, I think I'm good. Thanks." A bit of mental calculation on how many times that's exploded in her face and Ranma adds, "It just means more for you, right?" See. Totally being helpful. Her eyes turn to Rayne as she steps into the room and just simply points over at the Tank Girl.
Stomping through the doorway behind Rayne marches a very angry Freakazoid, his head currently still burning. "Do -I- get any offers for help? HUH? DO I? Nooooooo. Let's worry more about the TANK, right?" He marches past Ranma and Rebecca and heads straight for the kitchen. A moment later he returns with his hair smoking and a teakettle in his hands. "I was GOING to give this to the doody-head but /SHE/ had to lock me out of the scene, right? RIGHT?" He promptly pours out the water and throws the kettle towards the back of the room. "SHEEEESH!!!" He spins around to point angrily at Tank Girl, "AND YOUUUUUUU!!! I liked you better when you were played by Lori Petty!" He marches over to the stuffed animal on the floor and stomps on it, "AND YOUUUUUU! You're pretty creepy, y'know that? Like Shmee with teeth." He pauses long enough to compose himself and politely inform them, "Now I'm going to go spit off the bridge with Cosgrove. At least HE appreciates my company!" ...and out the door he stomps.
Ranchan stares at the broken fourth wall and just lets out a sigh. You get used to the weirdest things around here.
Clad in nothing but combat boots, scorched underwear and a studded leather jacket bearing the legend 'UR' on the left breast, and 'BITCH' on the other, Rebecca Buck isn't so much 'at the bar' as (wo)manning it. With a bottle of finest Betelgeusian space-saké in one hand and a lit cigarette - bent at a right-angle - dangling out of her mouth, she appears absolutely professional as she turns to stare nonplussed at the harassed-looking officer in full freaking combat armour. There's a moment where TG does nothing but stare, and then-- then she busts out laughing, big guffawing bellows ending in a gasp as she clutches at her side and sloshes probably very expensive booze all over the place. "BAHAHAHAHAHAHA!"
Straightening up, she shoves out her arm in what can only be called a FASCIST SALUTE because the times they have a'changed. Actually, it's very historically-accurate, dear reader, and shouldn't at all be taken as an indication of our heroine's racist leanings. A pottymouth is for everybody, not just pasty white people with dodgy hair and tiny testicles!
"Ave!" She offers up by way of greeting to the newcomer, "True to Caesar!"
See? /Historical/. Never let it be said you won't learn anything hanging out with Tank Girl. For her part, however, she's rather /dismayed/ to learn that she's managed to spit out her cigarette in all the excitement, and phrases a surly, pouted 'hmph' as she bends down to retrieve the article. Which leads her to miss the crazy blue guy marching past, though she hears him and straightens up with a, "HEY! LAY OFF THE TANK!" Her voice drops from a hoarse scream to a grumble as she adds, despondently, "That's the father of my child you're talkin' about..."
Her expression only grows more sour at what follows, and as Freakazoid is crossing the room she scoops the heavily-modified assault rifle from the top of the bar, shakes the stray drops of Space-Japaneasy wine off it, and opens fire toward the closing door. *DAKKADAKKADAKKA*
...she's not being that careful, but she'll probably miss anyone who's not stupid enough to just -stand there-.
"Pft!" She spits, shouldering the rifle with one arm and snatching up the refused bowl of burning saké to do it in one, searing gulp. "What an arsehole!"
Just for extra class, she belches around the final syllable, yet still manages to sound it out. Them's skills.
"I told you I was famous," she comments to Ranma, matter-of-factly, producing the remnants of her cigarette and popping it into her mouth like gum.
Rayne glances from Ranma to TG as the redhead implicates the other. She then gives TG a blank look as the punk proceeds to apparently make fun of her. "...Are you done, then?" she asks. She looks like she's about to say something else when Freakazoid stomps past complaining the whole way. As the red-clad one is in the kitchen, she raises an eyebrow. "Huh... I asked Cosgrove to help him out. What's his problem?" She shrugs and then takes a few steps foreward again before ducking the gunfire. "What the /hell/ is wrong with you?!" she shouts out as she gets back up to her feet and walks towards the bar with a bit more energy in her now. Her right hand is twitching lightly, as is her left eyebrow.
Ranchan has jumped back, gesturing habitually with both hands again for whatever demon-ward thing she's subconsciously doing. Rayne sums things up perfectly not a moment later leaving Ranma to look around for that emptied tea kettle that Freakazoid had thrown on his way out the door. Glancing at the two women to see if it's safe - she makes a mad dash for it only to find it already clutched in the finger-like head of one of the skutters here. "Hey! You give that back!"
Jim the Skutter doesn't like people. He doesn't like the way the meat sacks ingest food and leave their filth all over his home. He especially doesn't like being called anything other than Jim. So of course he blatantly ignores the redhead and heads back into the back. It's time for Gunsmoke, after all!
Ranchan screams, "GET BACK HERE YOU BUCKET OF BOLTS!!" Already the machine is gaining momentum forcing Ranma to start grabbing coasters off of tables to launch them ninja-star style at the blue service droid. Don't pay any attention ladies. This is perfectly normal in the UR as well.
Baby blues roll lazily toward the approaching rainbow-haired woman, and Tank Girl rolls her shoulders in a shrug, answering without missing a beat:
"According to my psychiatrist, rampant alcoholism, a predilection for acts of outrageous violence bordering on functional psychosis, and sexual miscreancy characterized by flagrant bestiality and a persistent Electra Complex - possibly a relic of my highly strict and religious upbringing." Rebecca pauses, rolling bits of tobacco and paper around in her mouth while she scratches thoughtfully at her rear; in the process disturbing the sensitive location of her butt floss and frowning as she tarries a bit longer to adjust it. After sufficient squirming and hopping, she leans forward over the bar and sends a shit-eating grin to the twice-crushed stuffed koala on the floor. "Ain't that right, Mr. Koala?"
The drooling creature groans and extends a raggedy-furred arm, opposable thumb raised in approval.
"My psychiatrist," explains the punkette helpfully, looking back to Rayne with a broad smile. "I've got papers to prove it! Besides," she tips her near-bald head toward Ranma in the background, as patrons duck and cover for the next display of violence, "I'm not the crazy one here."
Back to Rayna, and a conspiratorial stage whisper notes, "Gender identity issues. Very trendy."
Rayne raises a hand to cover her face and groans into it. "Would you mind /not/ shooting up the place? I'm really, /really/ not in the mood to deal with this kinda crap right now." She sighs, and looks back up to the punkette. No, there's no questioning the Koala being a psychiatrist, though she does give it a glance now... She hadn't thought it was living thing until now. "Look, would you mind moving your tank to the parking lot? Or at least the side of the road? It's causing a traffic jam right now."
And in the short amount of time that passes ICly, the doors to the kitchen are slammed open as Ranma continues to chase after her pray. Judging from the high pitched yelling and screaming it's not going too well. Following the sounds of a movie starting and water running, a black haired Ranma comes out of the kitchen moments later. "Alright. I'm good." It's worth nothing he's a guy again.
"Move... the tank?"
Scrunching up her face and squinting long and hard toward the window, Rebecca appears to give this issue far more thought than can possibly be warranted. Somewhere between each side of her skull - helpfully illustrated beyond the fourth wall and accompanied by a pull-out diagram in the center of this issue - electrical impulses play a game of tag until one of them gives up and they start making out over the formerly-combusted corpse of the old woman in charge of the mental switchboard. That seems to resolve the internal debate, and TG's expression lightens as she graces Rayne with a jovial laugh and a snappy, military-style salute that clunks a little too hard against her head and makes her wince out an 'ow'...
"Reckon I can give it a burl," she rallies, snapping her arm down and swallowing the foul nicotine paste in her mouth with an 'ulp'. "I'm better in an automatic though. Really need to switch out that gearbox. Oi, tits!" Turning toward the re-emerging Ranma, the punkette stops with her mouth forming an 'o' and then tips her head toward Rayne, raising a hand to shield her mouth, "Hate to say I told you so."
"Right then!" Skipping around with the attention span of a gnat, she promptly vaults the bar and, in the same motion, whips off her studded leather. This leaves her in a soiled g-string and a bra that by all rights shouldn't still be on - it's really some underwiring with a few vestigial scraps of frilly material - but she doesn't seem to care about this so much as seeing that she does right by her new duty. To whit, the 'UR BITCH' jacket is flung unceremoniously at the dark-haired martial artist. "Put this on and keep a watch out. You'll be right; it's unisex!"
One last salute is flung to Rayne, and then TG reshoulders her 5.56mm assault weapon and goes clomping out the door in her combat boots.
A few moments later, there's a loud roar as the WWII-era tank rattles to life.
Rayne just sighs and glances at Ranma with a somewhat apologetic look, as if to say, 'Sorry you have to deal with this,' - doing a double take in the process, of course, as she's not familiar with the her who is now a him - and walks back to the door to make sure that TG is in fact merely moving it to the side of the road or the parking lot... and not just making things worse. "I really wish I could say I trusted her... But it's hard to trust someone that forgot to put on clothes in the morning," she grumbles to herself. She opens the door to watch what's happening outside, a look of utter exhaustion on her face. Yeah, she has absolutely zero expectations of what she's about to watch, and her slumped shoulders bely that acceptance that this is probably not going to go well.
Rumbling on its tracks, Tank Girl's tank spits up chunks of rubble left behind by the destruction of the nearby shop front that brought it here. Flames still lick around the pavement behind, though this theoretically shouldn't be the case - scientifically - and raises a question about what, exactly, was destroyed when the vehicle bounced through a family's livelihood in order to end up in the street in the first place. There's no time for further questions, however, because deep in the bowels of the little tank that could, a single syllable is spoken that should put the fear of God into anyone:
There's a loud explosion as something in the rear of the tank just up and detonates rather than put up with whatever nonsense the eponymous Girl is attempting to put it through, and then the whole thirty-ton monstrosity lurches forward toward the front aspect of the Usual Restaurant. Knick-knacks go flying out of the open top hatch, including several articles of clothing that go no way to explaining WHY Rebecca was swaggering around almost labia-naked in the first place, a few empty liquor bottles, and an antique television set that's inexplicably showing an old Alec Guinness war movie. All of which is irrelevant in the face of the RAPIDLY APPROACHING ASSAULT VEHICLE clearly capable of flattening an ordinary building.
Rayne looks back to Ranma. "Oh, so you're not a new convergence then? Sometimes I forget I've been here for less than a year... Uh, Rayne Hurris, Second of TA-" Her attention is, of course, immediately drawn back to the tank as the explosion is heard. Her eyes widen, but only for a second. "...How did I know this was going to happen?" she groans as she runs into the building and well to the side of the projected path of the tank(at least in her mind.) "Everybody!" she yells out to the various unnamed people in the place. "We've got an incoming out of control tank! GET OUT OF THE WAY!" She starts motioning vigarously to try to convey where she thinks it will be safe to be.
There's really not much time before impact, but in what little time there is, Rebecca appears from the open hatch bearing a megaphone with a 'radioactive' sticker on the side and wearing a camo-patterned fireman's helmet. "EVERYTHING'S UNDER CONTROL!" She bellows, amplified by the device to a degree that just results in ear-splitting feedback. After smacking the side of the megaphone a couple times (this doesn't help) she adds, "TRUST ME! I'M A PROFESSIONAL!" Not that she seems to entirely trust herself, taking advantage of the delay between panels to drop down and slam closed the hatch. This coincides perfectly with what should be a tremendous impact as the tracks meet the Usual's window--
--but Ranma Saotome has other ideas, finding the time to make his own preparations and mount a battle for the ages, demanding an answer to the question all and sundry present have no doubt demanded to hear; can a man, who turns into a dangerously attractive redhead with a gloriously squishy chest, possibly hope to save Twisted City's premier meeting spot from the accidental bullrush of a Sherman tank??
MEANWHILE, INSIDE THE RESTAURANT
Camp Koala senses a disturbance in the Force, and rises groggily to his stuffed feet. Bloodshot eyes, one bulging noticeably larger than the other, look toward the entrance, and then toward the back wall of the premises. Not drawing in a breath because he's a stuffed animal and doesn't breathe, you IDIOT, Tank Girl's best and only hope for a sane and rational mind makes his own decision and sets out to perform one more majestic deed.
This is probably entirely unconnected to the way the cowering patrons all begin to glow, the power of the Earth (...er, wait) rallying behind their stalwart defender outside. Somewhere distant, a young girl looks up at the sky and brushes a tear from her eye. "We believe in you, Ranma Saotome."
DISCLAIMER: THIS MIGHT NOT HAVE ACTUALLY HAPPENED THIS NEXT PART TOTALLY DOES THOUGH
It's a small sound, really, deceptive in its relative lack of aural impact. A fist impacting plated steel, leaving a dent that's no more profound and will likely require about a good minute of hammering to even out. This is quite impressive, considering - especially as the Anything Goes martial artist still appears to have an entire arm left in the aftermath. More impressive yet is the tornado that rises behind his strike.
The yell comes from inside the suddenly-stalled tank, in the instant that follows wherein the universe - the multiverse! - holds its breath. The tank rattles and hums, tracks spinning as it's suddenly lifting a foot in the air... and then more, the culmination of Ranma's technique sending a shudder the length of the thirty-ton frame - and back, the tremor quickly reaching a most fortuitous point. The point, of a warhead.
Deep in one of the tank's missile bays, said warhead detonates. It just so happens to be rear-facing, because Rebecca is a sloppy-ass bitch who can't be bothered to prettify her beloved vehicle before she leaves it in park. There's a powerful expulsion of fire and fury, directed against the row of buildings opposite the Usual Restaurant and the tarmac between, tearing a gouge in the street that Tank Girl -was- obligingly attempting to vacate. Car alarms go off in every which direction, forming a fanfare for the skyward /LAUNCH/ of her mighty namesake.
"I REGREEEEET NOTHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIING!!!"
Her voice inexplicably coming through the megaphone, through the hull, Tank Girl makes her final proclamation to the stricken denizens of the Usual Restaurant as she's blasted out of harm's way and off into the skies above, descending past the roof in a long, less-than-lazy arc. ...she'll probably come down somewhere with catastrophic results, but here and now? Ranma is a hero! The crisis is averted!
Except for you know, all the fire left in the wake of this unlikely series of events. Fortunately, somebody else has a solution.
Camp Koala leers over the top of the firehose pulled from its case at the back of the UR, and now aimed into and through the doorway. There's a *thump* as the water gets up to pressure and is expulsed into a fierce, COLD jet at the hero of the day.