Do Not Own Dragonball Z or the characters attributed to the series..no money made
Those under 18 ..this has sex..so do not read
The Remembrances Of Time Always Catch You In The End
"Costa, it is official. The last remanants of Frieza's empire have been officially destroyed. There is no hope of any of them coming back to haunt us again." The Hydrian mercenary, Refallo, smiled at his leader, sure he would be pleased. He had spent several months on one of Frieza's lesser known planets, unnamed by most accounts, purging the remains of the sadistic tyrant's loyal following for his leader. Costa, his lord and master, had several reasons to want the whole of Frieza's empire wiped out completely, his own advancement to top of the line as leader not withstanding. He had just arrived back on board his ship,which hovered just outside of Maordi Prime's atmosphere, aptly named 'The Destroyer' by his master, for that was all it seemed to do of late. Destroy. Destroy anything left of Frieza so that the masses would know he was finished, completely and with no question.
Costa, smuggler, pirate and mercenary, looked at his second in command and smiled. "Does that mean we have finally caught up with the illustrious Prince Vegeta? As I recall I owe him a very special debt."
Refallo felt his face fall, the whiskers of his cat-like face drooping as he was forced to relay that piece of bad news to his boss. "No, sir, I am afraid there is no trace of Vegeta. He may already be dead, killed by Frieza himself. There were rumours, and none of the remains of Frieza's battle troops had any idea what had happened to him, only that he had gone after Frieza and that was the last he had been heard from. No amount of torture, or threat of death brought forth any new details." He took a shaky breath, prepared to be struck down for his failure. Costa was not a patient or tolerant man by any means and his wrath was swift.
"No!" Costa roared, giant, meaty fist hitting the small table that sat in front of him, sending empty glasses and bottles cascading to the floor around him. "Vegeta is not dead. I would know. We have a blood debt, he and I, and I would know if he was dead. I must find him for there is nothing more important then a blood debt, or so my brother told me. Vegeta would not be able to walk away from it. Get out of here and find me a lead." His scarred human face set itself in a gruesome scowl, sending Refallo skittering away in fear of his life. Costa laughed uproariously at the sight of the hardened killer running away from him like a baby. Yes one could lay many galactic crimes on Prince Vegeta Of Vegittasei, he had numerous bounties that several nasty mercenaries had locked onto, determined to collect, but no one had been able to figure out what had happened to him. He had literally disappeared from existence, though one heard rumours from time to time. The most popular being of his death by Frieza's hand for his betrayal of the tyrant, but Costa knew differently. No, Vegeta was not dead, he was most assuredly not dead and he would be found. It was only a matter of time and when he was, Costa would be waiting for him, for he owed him, owed him for much, but most of all he owed him for his brother.Perhaps a visit to the planet that this brother's life had been extiguished on would be a help. He grinned and held up his glass of extremely rare Arlian ale, rare since Vegeta had blown the planet into smithereens. "Soon brother..I promise I will find him soon and he will pay for what he did to you."
Vegeta landed on the beach that served as his home away from Bulma. The small island was ideal for training, at least until she managed to make him up another gravity room, plus it provided the perfect isolation for the kind of training he needed to accomplish. He could also admit it was a beautiful place to stay, not that he really paid much attention to that kind of detail, but occasionally, when he was laying flat on his back from exhaustion, too sore to move, he would stare up at the stars and listen to the gentle lapping of the ocean and admit it was a place of calm beauty. He deposited his wayward mate on her feet, watching as she looked around in undisguised awe. He could already see she was taken with the place, he'd known that she would be when he had first found it, and how many nights had he lain,wishing she were there to share it with him. He cursed himself mentally and walked away from her, needing to put as much space between the two of them as physically possible.
"Vegeta? Where are you going? " She clutched Trunks to her chest tightly, blue eyes wide and fearful, not wanting to be left alone in the middle of nowhere, no matter how beautiful it was. The beautiful places were usually the most danger filled. He snorted at her, such a weakling.
"I'm hungry woman. I didn't get dinner tonight." He turned and stalked off, determined to leave her there alone for awhile. With a little luck by the time he got back, she'd already be asleep and he'd not have to deal with her anymore.
"Well, maybe if you'd said something, I'd have fixed you some dinner, idiot." The words were spoken low and irritably, meant for her ears only, but his sharp Saiyajin ears picked it up.
"Why would I want to eat anything you prepared, woman? So I could die?" He smirked at her angry expression and strutted off, leaving her alone on the beach.
"Damn asshole." She sighed and looked around. Nothing but a starlit night and the gentle sounds of calm ocean waves breaking at the shore. How absolutely perfect. It's a shame I don't have anyone to share it with. The thought passed unbidden and unwelcome into her mind. No she did not want to go there. Vegeta was lost to her. She smiled sadly down at her son, who had fallen asleep at some point, and laid him down gently on the sandy beach. She slipped off her tee shirt and laid it down, carefully smoothing it so that it was stretched to its fullest length, moving the baby's limp, exhausted body on it. "Not much of a bed, Trunks, but better then some I suppose. She looked down at herself, clad in only her bra and shorts. Well, what now? A swim. A midnight swim would be a wonderful way to end the taxing, horrible day. It would relax her and how often did she really get to relax. Tomorrow she would be right back in the thick of things, attempting to find a new locale for their shelter, and seeing everything needed got moved and moved covertly. That was the real trick now wasn't it. The artificial humans were out come day or night, the nighttime just proved a more terrifying backdrop to their destruction, a better time to wreak fear and havoc. The nighttime was always the time people feared most,it was the time the monstrs came out. She put her hands up to her forehead and moaned. What was she going to do? Anyway you looked at, she was doing the impossible. There was no way to set up a new base of operations without someone taking notice. She slumped down to the sandy beach, fisting her hands, bringing them down to pound uselessly at the beach. Why? Why had this all had to happen. Gero and those stupid artificial humans had changed her life and not for the better. She doubled over and lay there quietly, listening to the sounds of the beach, the ocean, the distant sounds of jungle life from the island itself, and somewhere out there the gentle sounds of a whale. It was so peaceful, so wonderfully lulling. She could always worry about the problems of today, tomorrow. Nothing was going to get solved tonight. She should take that swim, it might help clear her mind. She scrambled to her feet and yanked off her shoes and shorts, leaving her clad in only her underwear and bra. She thought of skinny dipping, but thought again. She didn't want Vegeta to think she was coming on to him and freak out on her. Tonight they had formed a somewhat casual truce and she had no desire to see that broken. She slipped into the water and swam out as far as she dared, letting the surprisingly warm water wash away her anxieties and troubles even if only temporarily.
Vegeta walked soundlessly out of the jungle, coming onto the beach like a cat stalking his prey. He'd thought maybe she would be asleep, but she was no where to be found. Where had the little fool gone? He saw his son asleep on the ground, laying on what must be his mother's shirt. He swallowed hard, picturing her shirtless, and almost flew off, yet something held him there, his eyes shot over a few feet more and saw the rest of her clothes laying in a heap on the beach. She'd gone swimming. If he looked hard he could see her form, floating gently on the ocean waves, not too far from shore. He sighed and sat down, trying to beat down the desire to go and join her. What genetic defect did he have that allowed him to have feelings of desire for a weak female such as this one? She wasn't even Saiyajin, not that he particularly minded that. He had never encountered a Saiyajin female that would have been his equal in mind or strength, and while the woman out there couldn't beat him physically, mentally she was every bit his equal and he had no doubt that if she had to, she would figure out a way to take him out with some invention, a thought that left him oddly thrilled and surprisingly turned on. He would have to keep on his toes around this little one. One could not deny the brilliance of her designs or her intelligence. He, himself, had benefitted from them several times, which reminded him, she was long overdue to build him a new gravity machine. His brows furrowed. He would need to remind her of that, he had waited far too long and he had his limits of tolerance, even with her, though she usually stretched them as far as she could, seeming to know exactly how much he could tolerate. He laid back and closed his eyes, trying not to imagine what she would look like,dripping wet, and wearing nothing, as far as he could tell. He would just keep his eyes shut, that way he would not have to see it, but no if he did that, it would show more then he wanted her to see, his overwhelming fear and terror. His fear of her and what she did to him and all the feelings he wasn't supposed to have, but somehow had popped out of him anyway. Best to look straight on and rely on his control to hold him back. Could he rely on his control? He jerked upright, growling in fury at his indecision, pounding a fist into the sand. He had been doing fine until this afternoon, now all of a sudden, he was like an untried schoolboy getting his first taste of a woman. What was with him? He was a damn Saiyajin warrior, not a weak loser like Kakkarot. Maybe he should just let it happen and purge her out of his system that way. If he fucked her enough, eventually the wonder of it would pass away and fade. Whatever love he felt for her, he could kill one way or the other. He was the master of killing things, wasn't he? He looked out again and slowly stood, pulling off his armor, discarding it on the ground. Was this a good idea? Was he just giving himself an excuse to do what he had wanted to do since he had first seen her this afternoon? His boots flew off next. He had long ago discarded his gloves, somewhere back in the confines of Bulma's shelter, lost in his haste to care for her. He hadn't even realized he had taken them off. He froze as he saw her swim back towards the shore, unable to move. Did she even know he was there? Most likely not. Her ability to know when she was not alone, was frighteningly lacking. He had bullied her about it repeatedly, most especially when she had gotten herself into some trouble he'd had to extricate her from, even gone as far to show her how to read ki, but she had never picked it up, finding it boring and useless. He had stopped trying, figuring if she didn't care, why should he.The thought, though, that she was so openly vulnerable, ate at him more then it should. Another reason to not care about this woman. He whirled and stormed off the beach before she saw him, he would just spend the night somewhere else. She and the brat would be fine here until morning.
Bulma came out of the water, shivering at the cool breeze that hit her wet body. That had been nice, but now she had no fire, no blanket, no nothing to keep herself warm. She walked further up the beach and stopped, taking notice of Vegeta's armor and boots laying askew over the ground. Where was he? Had he gone into the water too? No, she doubted Vegeta would go with his suit on if he could avoid it and she didn't see it anywhere.Who knew where he was. Probably up some tree getting ready to leap down and scare the hell out of her. His idea of a funny joke. She wouldn't give him the pleasure of jumping. She shivered again. She'd have liked to start a fire, but had no idea how to without a match. A skill she obviously should have learned. Well maybe when she dried off, she would be warmer. She laid down next to Trunks,curling into a ball around the child. How nice it would be to have Vegeta warming her up right now. She fell asleep to that thought, dreaming of the warm body that had pressed itself to her before once in a different time and place,and warming herself up in her dreams if not in her reality.
Doctor Gero sat in the moonlight, observing the man who had battled him so, but now was just a fading memory of the man he'd been before. Another brilliant creation of his. He remembered this one, from the past. A friend of Goku's, a friend from long ago and one that Goku would be happy to take in, believing it a miracle he had survived. A brilliant creation to finally capture his long time rival and hated foe and capture the woman who had so held his fascination since he'd first beheld her some six months ago. Any other benefit would just be extra icing on the cake. He wouldn't mind having Vegeta. There was an excellent specimen with a mind of a true Saiyajin, not like Goku who had the mind of a simplistic human. Vegeta held such promise, a killing machine, born and bred to conquer and purge. He would be an excellent tool for his designs. Ahh, well, one must be happy with small steps. Right now, the breaking and rewiring of this man's mind had been his second small step that night. Slowly he would attain everything he wanted. Gero had at first thought Vegeta could have cared less about the Brief's girl, but he had since changed his mind. He may not love her, but it would be a matter of pride to him, allowing someone else to take what he saw as his. He might still be able to get Vegeta yet and all by using the girl to do so. He turned his attention back to the warrior that sat in front of him. Still human, yet not. He had first broken his mind and he had found that not easily accomplished, taking the man's mind to the brink of death,several times, letting him feel it, taste it, experience it first hand, over and over again until the man had begged for release. Another brilliant creation of his. A technological wonder, allowing the human mind to feel and experience the greatest mystery known to man and perhaps his greatest fear.... death. It could be such a terrifying ordeal especially if one didn't actually believe..believe that their might be something else, that this wasn't the final plane of existence. Gero didn't believe. His truth was all powerful, he was God, able to create anything he wanted, to assure himself eternal life, to control the destiny of mass individuals, perhaps with time and the proper objective the entire universe. He had no fear of death, for it would be unknown to him, but others, well they had no such assurances and that was what made them such easy prey for his manipulations. Fear was a powerfully motivating facter when used properly, death in particular a strong motivation in itself and the two went almost hand in hand as the ultimate inducement for people he needed to move in some way, shape or form. The fear of the unknown, of the imagined emptiness and aloneness and inevitably, the fear of nonexistence. It was always too much in the end, that they would cease to exist, to feel, to experience, that they would be nothing. It was what had broken his twins. They had been human once, orphaned and alone, until he had seen them and realized them for the terrors they could be, all too easy really. They had not wanted to be alone, had come almost too willingly and hungrily to what he offered them, like mice to the bait, until they had realized, too late, what he had planned for them . Yes he had made them into the death machines they were today, they had been the first real test of his own, more personal death machine, a device he had created with the hopes of recreating his idea of death and what it must inevitably be, and it had passed with flying colors, proving itself yet again this night, breaking the man who sat in front of him in mere hours, longer then was usually required. Perhaps because he had already been dead once and had seen the afterlife, knew it existed. It really mattered little, in the end it had finally worked, the feelings and thoughts invoked and presented and injected into his head had finally overruled the man's rational mind, helping him to forget what he had to have already known and proving once again to the doctor something he had always known, the frailty of the human mind and spirit, easily smashed and broken, not like a machine's. He had tirelessly fed the man's empty mind new memories, new orders, new thoughts, turned the once, cherished friends into enemies that must be destroyed at all costs, yet fed him with the cunning and cleverness to deceive and poison. All the things he needed to know to not be suspected by the group he was going to infilitrate, but making sure he would do the job that Gero needed him to get done. The promise of eternal life as an artificial human, the reward for a job well done, as the incentive to get it all accomplished, never having to taste death again.. Yes, another small step in his final goal of being a supreme godlike ruler. When he was done, the people of this planet and even, perhaps several others would revere him as a God, and not be able to distinguish between what was scientific and what was truly miraculous, for his own genius in itself was miraculous. A true gift from God. He laughed outloud, capturing the attention of his new and latest creation. "Come, my friend, let's rest. Tomorrow will be a very trying time for you, and you must not fail me. What they have done to you, they will do to others if we do not stop them. Do you understand?"
The man looked at him, his black eyes shining dully in the partial light. "Yes, Doctor Gero. We will see Goku destroyed for all he has done to me and to you."
Gero smiled widely. "Good, that is precisely what I wanted to hear. Don't forget, they are clever and not easily fooled. You will have to be very clever. They must not suspect a thing, or they will destroy you and you will not have your eternal existence. Do not fail."
The man shuddered at the thought of feeling the black emptiness that he had felt earlier. The Doctor had told him that Goku could send him there again, make him relive his time there. He would fight to ensure that never happened. Doctor Gero had promised him eternal life if he succeeded. He would not let the Doctor down, the doctor had saved him, saved him from the betrayal of Goku, his supposed friend.Oh, the things that Gero had enlightened him about, well he would make them pay for all that they had done to him and all that they had done to harm Gero.The words that the doctor himself had made sure he understood, played in his head like a broken litany..over and over. Gero had saved him. Gero had saved him...
Vegeta came back to the beach only an hour after he had left it in frustrated anger. In the end, the memory of her in his arms, of her body pressed heatedly against his had been too much, driving his need for her, his need of the all consuming passion that burned between them, to the breaking point and driving him back onto the beach to lay beside her, no matter the consequences. He saw her, a huddled, shivering ball on the ground, and smirked. He'd be welcome. Stripping, he laid himself behind her, stretching out along her backside, pressing his warm, naked body against hers, urging her to stretch out, to relax against him. Unconciously she snuggled closer to the warmth, unrolling from the position she had balled herself into. His hand skimmed along the leaness of her legs, admiring the soft skin, the silk of her hair as it brushed his shoulder. He had never experienced anything like this and maybe that was why he ran so hard away from it. That he would even notice such details or care about them was disturbing, most especially to his peace of mind, his knowledge of who he was. He had never given thought to them before, raised to see the female as simply the means to momentary pleasure or getting an heir when needed, never as anything beyond that. His father had never gone back to the same woman twice, yet here Vegeta was mating with this woman repeatedly, unable to stop himself, and cursing himself for it every single time he did. His body was already about to explode from the simple act of laying next to her. He dipped his head in, letting his mouth work its way up her exposed neck to the soft jawline that lay open and exposed to him, as if inviting his touch. He heard her soft moan, felt her turn herself more into his embrace. Why did this have to be wrong? Why had his father told him this was wrong? Nothing had ever felt more right.
She felt so warm. Kami, Vegeta was warm. It felt so good, that warm, strong embrace. She had never met a man whose aura was so incredibly hot and smoldering. It practically sizzled around him, wherever he was and right now he was laying next to her. Was this a dream, if it was she didn't want it to end. She uncurled her body next to his, heart leaping at the feel of his hand smoothing up her cool skin, his mouth tasting the sensitive skin of her neck.This couldn't be a dream, that touch was too hot, too real, scorching her in its intensity. He knew how that made her feel,his mouth on her neck, her most sensitive spot, what that did to her, and somewhere inside of her she could feel that intensely warm feeling unfurling in her belly and spreading throughout her entire body, urging her to open herself more fully to him.
Vegeta had known this moment was coming, had known it was inevitable when he had seen her this afternoon layng asleep on her bed, when he had touched her. He had fought it with every thing he had, but in the end it had overwhelmed him and shattered everything he held true about himself, every lesson that he had learned, leading him down this path of utter damnation. He'd hate himself for this, he already knew that, the loss of control, the weakness. He would hate her for it as well, though it wasn't her fault, but he would hate her regardless, blaming her for the ability to cause him to abandon everything so casually and give in to this, for his inability to walk away, but right now it was pointless to think beyond this moment, not with his mind being overtaken by the overpowering urge to bury himself in everything this woman had to offer, everything she was willing to give so freely, and what he wanted to take unconditionally. He rolled her over, half covering her with his body, his mouth descending onto hers, relaxing as it opened to him, allowed him access, plundering it with his own, tasting, teasing, consuming her in a flame of fire so hot, she thought she'd been burned, arching up towards the hand that dipped in between her legs, rubbing her gently.
Bulma moaned and threaded her hands through his beautifully, spiky hair, holding him tightly to her, half afraid he would disappear, nothing but an illusion conjured up by her overworked brain. She gasped as his mouth trailed down the exposed skin of her chest, tasting each nipple, still lower over her flat belly his tongue dancing over her skin, trailing lower still to taste her completely. She arched her body against his mouth, trying to contain the emotions that had flooded her every sense. Kami, it had been too long since they had been together, too long since she'd held him, too long since he had claimed her body as his. Her hands grasped his shoulders, trying to coax him upward , to coax him to the joining that always made her feel so complete and full. Her heart ached for that, needed it. The intimacy of that connection, that he let her that close, that he opened himself to her that way. It was what she needed.
Vegeta moaned as she surrendered herself to him completely. He had felt her body give in to his, urge it to finish what he had started. He drew himself up, not giving her a chance to turn the tables on him, to completly demolish his self control, not like she liked to, his hard shaft poised and ready to join them, connect them, to bind them together. Too late to stop, too late to turn back. Oh...God, there would be time for self-recrimations and self-hatred later. The cold comfort of not feeling could wait. Right now he wanted to feel..God he wanted to feel every part of her. He entered her hard, not wanting to rush, but unable to go slow either. He had denied himself this little piece of heaven for so long that he wasn't sure he would make it past five minutes with her, but he would try.....he would try. He moved fully inside her, moaning with each hard thrust, overwhelmed by the feelings that he could feel rolling off of her, the way she answered his body and completed it. God how she melded so perfectly against his body, fit him, touched him, everything about her was absolute perfection to him.
Bulma lifted herself up to meet every hard thrust he had,taking him deeper, loving the sound of his deep,sensual moans as she did so, the look of utter pleasure on his beautiful face. She tried with every ounce of her being to pour her love for him through her body. He had told her once, after their initial joining, in a rare quiet moment, that Saiyajin mates were always bonded and completely attuned to each other's feelings and thoughts, a connection of mind, body and soul. She hoped he could feel hers. She wanted him to feel her love, her desire and most off all she wanted him to feel assured that she wouldn't turn on him,that her love for him wasn't conditional, that things didn't have to be as awful as he thought they had to be, that accepting her love would not make him weak or useless. She opened herself up to him like a book, giving as much as she took, moaning with the pleasure he was giving her.
Vegeta felt it all, every feeling she had for him, a side-effect of the bond that had been forged when they had come together initially. He shuddered from the depth of them, nearly overwhelming him with the beauty of it. He had never had anything like this in his life before and didn't know what to do with it. Beautiful things were a rarity in his life and he knew he had never held anything as beautiful as this in his life. He caught himself, before he gave away too much, not willing to show her that much of himself yet. It was too much, to open yourself that way, leave yourself open for such pain. That was the only thing that came from sharing yourself the way she wanted him to share himself, gut-wrenching pain. He knew that first hand and eventually so would she see. When she knew him for what he was, the heartless killer that Frieza had made him, that his father had wanted for the sake of pleasing Frieza. The merciless killer that had so casually killed thousands of people and as many worlds with a flick of his wrist. When she realized what he had done for the sake of power and strength, she would turn from him in a second and he would not allow himself to remain, having given himself to her so fully and be left standing holding his pride, alone. That would be too much. He could take pleasure, he could give it, but he could never give her the part of him she wanted. He thrust into her deeper, bringing himself closer to his own completion, hearing her as she neared hers, hearing her moan his name, feeling her body tighten as she came, thrusting wildly beneath him as she attempted to harness the pleasure. He felt himself go over the edge, forgetting for a moment to hold his emotions in check, allowing her to get a small sense of all he held so closely guarded, secreted away in the part of him that he had walled in like a fortress, tight and impenetrable.
Bulma gasped as she came, unable to give voice to any sound, any thought other then the mind blowing pleasure that was between them, feeling him as he climaxed with her, moaning her name, his breath hot and heavy in her ear. For an instant in time she saw something, some brief moment of deep feeling that she could not put a name to, but was there all the same, before it was snatched back away from her, leaving her alone and wanting more. She could have growled in frustration. Dammit he was so stubborn. Here they had shared something so immensely precious and rare and he was too dense to realize it. Well two could play that game. She wouldn't even ask him to stay or to love her, she had too much pride for that. She'd offered and he'd refused. It didn't get any clearer then that.
Vegeta slowly came back to himself, laying on top of her, attempting to gather his breath. He rolled over slowly, bringing her with him so that she rested atop him, her own body heaving with her exertions. He smirked at the passion flushed face and the dazed blue eyes. No one would ever know how to please her the way he did. He felt himself frown at the thought that someone would try to take over that position. She was his mate, there had better not be anyone else filling this role in her life. He stared into her sleepy eyed gaze for a moment, thinking of all the things he had felt from her in those few, intense, passion filled moments. He had not been meant for that kind of life. He had been taught those feelings were wrong, something unacceptable in a race where warriors and fighting and ruling were everything, where love got you killed. Not to say the Saiyajins didn't have their version of affection, it was just nothing like the humans of this planet showed it. It was something silent and mental, with private feelings spoken only through the bonds that were forged between couples that had found their perfect partner. It scared him that he had managed to forge a bond with a woman who for one wasn't even Saiyajin and secondly, how could he have forged a bond when his father had all but beat into him that his life was for ruling and strength and that there had been no time for love or anything beyond fathering an heir whenever it was neccesary for him to do so. What was it the bastard had said over and over. 'The throne is your life..brat..the power , the control. Nothing else matters but those things.' No need beyond that, just the power of the throne. Tears were beaten away and no one had been allowed to stay in his life long enough for him to even grow remotely attached to. Nappa had been a constant after he was given to Frieza, but Nappa had also been an idiot, not understanding the bigger picture and never fighting honorably, his loyalty questionable. Half the reason he had killed Nappa was his honorless attack on Kakkarot's brat. He had told him to stand down, to allow him the fight, but Nappa had disobeyed him and attacked blindly, striking cowardly and showing his lack of strength and control,getting himself beaten badly and in the end begging for something Vegeta had been unable to give him, forgiveness. Vegeta wasn't sure if coming to this planet was a good thing or not. He had suffered a humiliating defeat at Kakkarot's hands, yet it had worked out strangely for the best. He had needed Kakkarot and his son to help him defeat Frieza, it had turned out alright in that regard,though it had left him with the emptiness of an unanswered destiny, an unfulfilled vengenance. He had suffered more by Frieza's hand then anyone else, his planet, the planet he was sworn to uphold and protect, destroyed, and he had been denied the ultimate revenge against the bastard that had done it all, having to suffer instead as his greatest rival attained all that he had hoped for and wanted, not bothering to kill him, instead sparing him, and this strange adoption into their fold, from people that he had done nothing but hurt, even killed was almost too much to believe and this woman, that she was where she was now..well it was all mind boggling to a person raised with no such sense of loyalty or forgiveness or kindness. Something she would never comprehend. Now he was stuck on this planet with a family and he couldn't even figure out how he had let that happen. It was a mystery to him, just like the blue eyed beauty that lay above him, watching him warily. What would his father say now? He didn't really care. He was alive and his father wasn't. He had a son just like his father had, and while he might not be father material, he would die fighting, before sacrificing the boy to anything like Frieza or Gero or any other sick monster that haunted the universe. He had too much pride to barter for his life on the head of his own son. Did that mean he cared about the brat? Perhaps, some small part of him and that was more then he could claim. He had been under no such illusions from his father. His father had sold his soul for him, and that was perhaps the lesson he had learned the best. That there was no such thing as an unconditional love, no matter how much Bulma or that third class idiot badgered him about it.
Bulma watched the shut down begin. The black eyes that had regarded her so curiously for a moment had narrowed slightly,hardening even as she watched, the face that had been calm and relaxed for a brief moment had tensed, aging him ten years in one second, the black, slanting brows furrowed, still so devestatingly handsome, yet so much more harsh and forbidding. She sighed, deciding to just roll off him now, before he said or did something they would both regret. She attempted to do that, to roll off of him casually and just go to sleep, but he surprised her. His arms tightened around her, refusing her exit.
"Who said I was done with you?" His voice was husky, causing her to shiver in his arms. He smirked, pleased with her reaction. No he may not have the time or need for the higher emotions but that didn't mean he couldn't find whatever pleasure he could in this woman's arms. It had been a long time since they had last been together, and now that he had tasted her again, he wasn't anywhere near ready to stop.
She smiled down at him, unsure what had brought this on, but not about to argue. She had longed for this kind of physical contact with him for what seemed like forever, the need to touch and be touched nearly overwhelming. He rolled her over, determined to keep control, to be the one that set the rythym of their passion and Bulma allowed him to, gasping as he surged into her again, forcefully, taking her body to even greater heights of passion, repeatedly, desperately trying to get his fill before sunrise, knowing that at sunrise, he would have to walk away once more and this time not look back. She fell asleep sometime before dawn, wrapped in his warm embrace, held closely against his chest, her troubles, blessedly forgotten, until she rose.
Goku laid silently on the small cot that Bulma had managed to find for him, his head still throbbing from the clobbering it had taken earlier, a mixture of shame and frustration drifting through his body, refusing any and all exit and holding onto him with almost unbreakable vise. A year ago he wouldn't have even blinked at a knock like that, but now, since the heart virus had ravaged his body, even a dent on his head could mean death. He pounded his fist uselessly into his palm, angrier then he could ever remember being at fate's laughing blow to him. He'd been the strongest warrior in the universe, able to protect his family and friends, help people in need and now he was reduced to this? Was there some kind of cruel irony in this bizarre twist of fate? He didn't even know if he would ever regain his strength. Bulma had researched what she could about the virus, but it was still such an enigma, so unknown. She had found hardly anything on it. Her father had taken several samples of his blood, two while he had been sick and two after his apparent recovery, promising to analyze them and see what he could find out. So far, the Doctor had been unable to tell him anything, only that his Saiyajin blood had reacted negatively to the virus, leaving him weakened beyond belief. For once the Saiyajin blood had been a liability, something that Vegeta had hotly disputed, when warned about it. Yet it was as Bulma had argued to both of them, Goku had not one drop of human blood in him, and according to Trunks, the people that had gotten the virus in the future had all been cured completely with the antidote, no side effects evident. Only Goku had reacted to the virus so poorly, even with the antidote. He reached down and felt for his sleeping wife's hand, clasping it in a loose embrace. Chi-Chi. She had steadfastly stayed by his side, comforting him when he needed it and yelling and bullying when that had been required as well. She had gotten him through this much and Bulma...she'd been so encouraging, telling him there had to be a way to fix it, giving him hope. He believed if anyone could do it, it was her. As long as he'd known her she'd been able to fix or make, or even do anything and his faith in her was unshakeable, their past together proof that she would come through for him and his own. He had to have faith in that, in her. If there was a way she would find it, motivated by the desire to see the killer of all their beloved friends, brought to a final judement. Something Vegeta could not do simply because he had not cared about them, and would not understand the significance of making Gero and his two machines understand what they were dying for. No the death blow had to be struck from him, for them, Yamcha, Tien, Piccolo and he shut his eyes, the image of his best friend still vivid in its clarity, yet painful in its remembrance, Krillin. Yes for all of them he must defeat this stupid disease and then Gero. He turned his head and looked at the pinkening sky, awed by the beauty of the dawn. He loved this planet with every fiber of his being, it was who he was and it was his home and to not be able to defend it when she needed it the most,to not have been there for his friends when they had needed it most, well...he was still learning how to deal with that.
Bulma came awake slowly, alone, as the first rays of sun shone down on her, stretching languidly, recalling all the things he had done to her last night. He had to care.No man would touch a woman like that, take such care to please her if he felt nothing, especially Vegeta. He was more then capable of just using her body to please himself, yet he hadn't. He had tortured her repeatedly, using his own body to do so and taken her over the edge so many times, she wasn't sure she would be able to walk. She smiled as she thought of there last time together, when she had managed to get a hold of him, and using her own knowledge of what drove this man insane had proceeded to show him keeping his distance was an impossibilty, his self-control a mere illusion, drawing him to his own precipice and throwing him over it with all the gentleness of a bear, forcing him to feel things he claimed not to be able to feel and hearing him cry out in agonized pleasure as she took him and everything he had to give, driving him to the point of exhaustion. That was probably why he was not here with her now. She'd known when she was doing it that he would be angry with her, and that their would be a harsh penalty to pay, but Kami, it had been worth it. His inabilty to hold anything back, to share himself with her, it was all she had and it was worth any price that she had to pay. She stood up and walked to the shore, sliding her sore body into the ocean, allowing the warm water to wash over her aching muscles. So much for sleeping on the ground...she wouldn't want to do that too much, even with Vegeta..now sleeping on top of him, that was different..she still shivered at the husky words he'd mumered to her...' Who said I was done with you?' Did he have any idea what those few words had set in motion within her? Oh kami, she didn't have time for this now. She would be analyzing Vegeta until the day she died. She was alone now wasn't she. Vegeta was no where to be found. She washed away the night's activities, forcing her mind to return to the problem at hand, finding a new shelter. She had spoken to her future son briefly last night and he had promised to help her. ' I know of some underground caverns..they might be perfect for what we need them for...maybe we could even add to them. ' His somber voice had spoken quietly to her away from the others. He had promised to take her to see them. She would have to begin an immeditate check to see if there was anyway she could convert them to a working space for all the things she would need them for, they had generators, so they should be able to get power..kami there was just so much. She pulled herself out of the water, letting the warm sun dry her off, dressing in her now sandy clothes.She would change them when she got back. She had no illusions that Vegeta would want to stay here with her indefinitly, no matter how erotic that idea sounded. She bent to awaken Trunks who had managed to thankfully sleep through the whole night. She would be eternally grateful to him for that, last night had been wonderful,all too short, but astonishly amazing and it would have to last her for however long Vegeta held himself away from her this time. She smiled at the baby who opened his sleepy, blue eyes, wondering if Vegeta ever looked up at anyone this way, was this how he had looked as a baby. She picked him up and hugged him to her, turning to seek out Vegeta. It would be best if they got back to the corporation so she could begin avoiding him and start concentrating on all the things she had to accomplish today.
Vegeta sat by the waterfall he had found, studying his reflection in the clear, blue water, blue like her eyes, bottomless. He groaned and looked away. Last night had been a monumental mistake, giving into his desires the way he had and in the end game giving away much more of himself then he planned to, leaving him open and vulnerable by the light of day and unable to face her and what he would see in her face, the love, the desire all the things she felt and had said and shown him. Damn her, he hated her for this, for giving him something so wonderful to hold onto. How could he when everything in his past told him, it would be taken away from him, just as everything else had been..his peace of mind, his pride, his hope, his security..the list was endless and he could have listed the things gone to him for the rest of the day. Are they really gone from you or can you regain them? The question flitted through his brain, leaving him more frustrated then before. He had regained his pride only to have it drug from him and destroyed by those bastard artificial humans, in one merciless beating they had shown him his strength and pride were a mere illusion, a comfort and the only thing that has saved him from dying had been the woman he had spent the night with. It had signified the end of their burgeoning relationship, though. They had left him to die in shame and humiliation, his pride stripped from him, his strength gone, welcoming his final, painful breath, begging for its release and she had come, her tear streaked face had appeared above his beaten body. ' Vegeta, please don't you die on me. Don't you die, just give me a minute, I have a senzu...' He'd watched her dig frantically through the bag she'd had slung across her body with weary eyes, wanting to reach out to her, to give her some wordless thanks for helping him, for caring..for the gift of the son that would carry his blood on...Somehow he had found the strength to reach out to her, to graze her slender hand with his own,his gloves long since burned away, thinking that it wasn't so bad to die with her touch on him, that single memory enough to carry him straight to Hell where he already knew he would be going, to sustain him for all eternity, but her head had jerked up and her hand had been taken from his weak grasp, ending the touch he had so desperately needed, her face appearing before his yet again, this time smiling through the tears, forcing something into his mouth, forcing him to swallow it. ' It'll be alright now Vegeta, this will make you better.' And she had been right. In a matter of moments it had been like nothing had ever touched him, but he had been furious with her, furious for not letting him die with some honor, for forcing him to live with the shameful truth of his defeat, and she had thrown herself into his arms, hugging him, sobbing . He had shoved her away in disgust and fury, fixing her with the iciest look he could muster. He would never forget the look of painful fear on her face as he had taken the few steps neccessary to bring him to her, he'd been too mad to say anything to her, had just stood there shaking with fury, managing to convey all he had felt in those first few moments after her intrusion through the bond, simply sending his rage and hatred. He had flown off, not coming back for a week, and when he had he'd avoided her at all costs, turning away when ever she had walked by, learning to avoid the places she would frequent,showing her in no uncertain terms where she stood in his life and her son as well, until the first attack on Capsule Corporation had shown him precisely where his true feelings lay. She'd been working in her office, when Juuhachigou and Juuanagou had made an appearence, blasting everything and anything that had moved. At first he had been oblivious to any danger she'd been in, he'd been training in the gravity room, rocketing out at the first sounds of explosion, his blood running hot when he had seen the two piles of junk. He'd been on his way after them, on his way to avenge his previous defeat, when he had remembered overhearing her tell her mother that she'd be in her office all day if Trunks needed anything. He'd had a choice in those first few moments, face certain death at the hands of the artificial humans or save the woman that had come to epitome everything good in his life from her own certain death, the same woman he had treated like trash because she had decided to save his life, to give him another chance to survive and destroy the two terrors.He'd rocketed off to her office, flying through the already opened window, seeing her laying across her desk, unconcious. He'd scooped her up, whispering to her, cajoling her to hang on, not even sure now what he had said, flying back to the main house, dodging blasts and fire to get her to the safety of the house, following her father down to the underground shelter to the regen tank that stood waiting in the med lab..she'd awoken some four hours later, to see him staring in at her through the glass, unmoving and somber. They had made love that night, countless times in every possible way, he had made sure to take his fill of her, knowing it would be the absolute last time he would be with her that way, the decision to save her life over attacking an enemy waying heavily on his mind, making him realize just how distracted and intoxicated he had become with her and reminding him that it could not be that way for him, that he could not allow that kind of weakness in his life to be twisted and used against him, and he had succeeded at keeping his distance, of pushing her buttons, every day pushing her closer and closer towards hating him, until yesterday when the second attack on Capsule Corp had taken place, sending him flying back to her side in a flash and to make the poor choice of bringing her here to taunt him with her nearness and overwhelming his rational thought with her intoxicating presence, driving him to claim her body as his, yet again. He had tried to hold his mind away from it, to keep himself distant, but she had not allowed him even that small peace, forcing him to open up to her, to bare his soul. Why had he not stayed off this planet when he had the chance, gone far away and never looked back. Now he was stuck here, doing things that were far away from who he was or at least who he had believed himself to be, all for this one small woman. It drove him insane with frustrated anger, until he wanted to...he growled and raised his hand blasting a tree, feeling the urge to destroy anything, to take his anger out on something. He watched dispassionately as the ancient tree fell backwards, smoking and burning, fighting the urge to blast more objects. This was all the stupid woman's fault. He turned towards the clearing as he sensed her approach. Her intrusion angered him. Could he find no refuge from her? He watched as she came out off of the path and saw the waterfall, smiling joyfully at its beauty, hugging their son and showing him. He tried to look angry, harsh, anything that would frighten her away. What was she looking for, some silken moment between them after a night full of passion? She would not get it from him.
"What do you want woman?" He fixed a cold stare at her, his face set in a controlled, calculated expression, giving no clues as to what thoughts might be floating beneath his surface.
Bulma looked at him cooly, refusing to allow the hurt and the pain bubble up for him to see. She had known this was how it would be, there were no surprises, she had been willing to accept this, yet it still pained her. How could this be the same man from last night? It was just inconceivable to her, the mercurial changes that he went through. "I need to go home."
She returned his ice-filled stare, with one to match, surprising him with its intensity and hurting him with its bricked up regard.It seemed she too, had learned how to mask herself and she had obviously learned how to do it well. He wasn't used to that from her. As long as he had known her she had been an open book to him, letting him see all the thoughts, all the emotions, all the pain that he could inspire within her, rarely holding it back.It troubled him that she was able to do it now, but if he thought about it, it could be traced back to that fateful day when he had challenged the artificial humans and failed, when he had condemned her. She had never recovered form that emotional blow and he knew it well. He lowered his head, casting all thoughts away, save one, seperating himself from her before she cost him the rest of his soul, though he wasn't sure she didn't already own it. He would do what he must to reclaim it and break whatever bond existed between them.
"Whatever, it makes no difference to me, I need to get on with my training."
"Fine, then how about now. I have a lot to get started on, most importantly finding a new shelter. I don't have any time to waste."
"Isn't that something you do everyday woman, waste your time? You put too much stco in mechanical things." He sneered at her.
"What?" She couldn't believe he would say that to her, lost for a reply. She did alot of things and her inventions had certainly helped him, he knew that.
"Saving the weak, inventing useless machinery, you can't even defend yourself, woman. You have to rely on other people to save your ass. What good are you? In the end a machine will not save your life."
Bulma's throat convulsed tightly, painfully. Is that how he saw her? As useless, weak? She had tried to help him, tried to reach out to him, had done a lot to keep him alive actually. "I..I.."She struggled for a response. She knew what her self worth was, but that he didn't, that she apparently had no self worth to him, was the worse thing he had ever said to her, cutting a wound deep,raw and burning in her soul.
"Don't bother to answer, we already know what your good for don't we." He forced the words out past the tightness of his throat, fought the urge to go to her. She looked so shell shocked, so devestated. He forced himself to stare at her, to ignore the pain, a lesson he had learned in Frieza's army. He was a warrior, not a sap. "Perhaps I will have to avail myself of your services again woman, though I would rather avoid the appearance of anymore bastards."
Her mouth dropped open. How dare he? He could call her whatever he wanted, she was long past caring, but her son, the son he had helped to create, that was different. She felt something turn inside her and twist painfully, leaving her with a sick, empty feeling inside her. He wanted to leave her, to leave Trunks, well fine..she wouldn't stop him. She struck out blindly, clocking him in his jaw, doing no damage, but making her feel somewhat better with just the simple motion of doing it. "Fine Vegeta. I won't bother you again, and you can look elsewhere for your entertainment, mine won't be available to you anymore. "She turned and fled as the first hot tears began to cascade down her face, blurring her vision. She had another way off this island and she would use it. That would show him what she was capable of. She made it to the beach, aware of his oncoming presence. God there was no time to waste, she had to get away from him, before he destroyed her. She reached into the deep pocket of her shorts, producing the capsule she had purposely grabbed before she had left last night, throwing it onto the ground, watching as a small plane appeared. Thank Kami for capsules. She threw herself into it, setting Trunks down on the floor. Not the safest way for him to travel, but for now it would do, her desire to put space beteen her and Vegeta was too strong, overiding her rational thought and sense. She fired up the engine, intent on getting off this stupid island. She'd made a fool of herself, thinking perhaps he had wanted her back, had wanted to get back what they had, that maybe he loved her. She dashed away her tears, lifting back on the yoke and propelling the plane upwards and away from the island. She was done with being stupid for this man. She had given everything of herself that was precious, that was good and he had just destroyed it as if it was a worthless piece of garbage that he wanted to be rid of. She would not cry, she would not cry. She had known what he would be like when she had woken up this morning. She had known that he would be an idiot and ruin it, but she had not known the depth of his desire to be rid of her and his feelings. She dashed away more stray tears, Kami she just could not seem to stop the damn things.Why must she sob about everything. Why had she not been able to think of something equally scathing to say to him? She had stood there and literally stuttered, unable to form one coherent defense to him. How dare he treat her that way. She'd had it. She angrily swept away two more tears, attempting to bring some calm to herself. Thank Kami she had thought to grab this last night. She wasn't sure why she had, she was more then content to let Vegeta fly her all over,reveling in the feel of freedom in the simple act and loving his strong arms wrapped around her, but some small voice had spoken to her, urging her to take it just in case he decided to be difficult, which any more was just about every damn day. It dawned on her rather rapidly that she had no idea where she was going, he had not told her,nor had she even gotten some small sense of direction. She'd been too distracted with him. Well, she could fix that too, she reached over and activated the navigational system. All her planes had the coordinates for the Capsule Corporation programmed into them. Now if she could just avoid any artificial humans, she'd be doing good. Punching the button, she immediately set the coordinates for home, and didn't bother to look back.
Vegeta had made it back to the beach and seen her hasty departure, had almost gone after her but checked himself. So she hadn't really needed him after all. Why should that surprise him? She was an enterprising woman, he knew that, more enterprising then she should be. He sat in the sand, dropping his head into his hands.Why had he done that, attacked her that way? He had been angry, angry at her intrusion, angry at his constant response to her, to everything about her. He needed time, time to think, time to grow accustomed to her, to his home, and she just wouldn't let him have that. Things were so different now, not the way they were with Frieza. He had a choice now, a free choice that would not leave him broken or battered or fearing for his life. He could do whatever he wanted, and he could have her, the thought that he was so free was exceptionally difficult to comprehendlet alone to reach out to, and anyone who had not been forced to submit, to bow and scrape, to have their will subjugated, could not understand the emormity of the the simple act of having free will.Why couldn't he just reach out and take it, because it was too monumentally frightening and he lived in constant fear of all he had managed to gain being swiped away again, batted away as if it had never existed and this time he was fairly certain that after having tasted such freedoms, having tasted her, of having someone care for him, to inevitably lose it all would destroy him. He had destroyed them this time, he knew that. He had seen the look in her eye, right before she had fled from him. Dammit,all she had wanted was to go home, to start her work, to start in on that infernal time machine that their future son so desperately wanted.He had known she needed to get to work on a new shelter. He had been so angry and confused, he'd not meant any of it, but he had lashed out anyway,saying things that were unforgiveable even by his own standards. He was so tired of this, of the emotional drain. It was something he was unaccustomed to. On Vegitasei, the Saiyaijns mated for life and that was it. One accepted what one's mate gave them and that all. There was no emotional upheaval, not on the order of this. Why had he gone and fallen in love with this woman who demanded so much more? He was a Saiyajin elite. Love was beyond him...he growled and struck the ground with his hand. Dammit, he would give this no more thought. He was done with it. He needed to be training, not agonizing over this woman, love was for fools like Kakkarot.This planet was populated with millions of them,all subjugating themselves in the name of love. He was becoming unduly influenced by them and by their culture. He would simply train this undesired trait out of himself, train until he could barely stand if that was what it took. He stood and began his warm ups, clearing his mind of all thought but the simple need to attain more power, recalling the shame of his defeat by the artificial humans, his failure even at Supersaiyajin to achieve defeat over his enemy. The memory fueled him, fed his energy until he stood a golden beacon on the beach, his hair a flame of pure, glowing yellow, his eyes green. The power this gave him. He could not believe this wasn't enough to beat those fucking artificial humans. He could find more power within himself, enough to destroy them. To fail was not something he could contemplate.
Gero had arranged the details of his reunion into the Z group carefully, going over all the pertinent details with him, showing him how he would maneuver amongst them. He squeezed the small transmitter that he would fasten onto himself, the transmitter that would share everything with Doctor Gero. It was all so simple, so easy. They would be overjoyed at seeing him alive, pretending they had not sent him to his death in the first place, fawning over him,making excuses for their failures. Such hypocrites, well soon they would be dead and he would be alive forever. What a fitting revenge. How could he have even thought of them as his friends? He stared at the city that lay ahead of him. Inside its confines sat Capsule Corporation, soon, he would be one step closer to gaining his eternal life. He smiled at the thought. What things he wold be able to do, all he needed to do was achieve this, then the rst of his life was his.
Bulma landed outside the confines of the deserted corporation, looking around cautiously. Sunlight filtered down scorching and bright, illuminating the area with an almost hazy incandescence. It was the kind of day that should have seen the whole city bustling with activity and noise. Summer tourists in to spend their vacations. Instead there was nothing but an eerie silence that stretched out seemingly for miles. Nothing, not even a whisper of a breeze. Calm, still and deafening. The repurcussions of the artificial humans, every living being too afraid to show its face, afraid of being killed, hiding under the ground like moles or amongst the rubble like rats. She shuddered and grabbed Trunks, wanting to get back inside as fast as she could. She had spooked herself and she wasn't sure how or what had caused it, but it was just some inate sense of wrongness, of unease. She should have swallowed her pride and just come back with Vegeta. He might be emotionally stunted but at least she would have been safe. She took a cautious step outside the plane, Trunks clutched tightly to her chest,encapsulating it. Her eyes darted rapidly all around, looking for any hint of something out of place. Another step. Kami, why did she feel like someone was watching her, like she was not alone? "Hello.." Her voice seemed to boom in the empty silence that surrounded her. She thought she had seen something move. She squinted into the glare of the sun, unable to make out anything but a wavy haze of surreal images. "Hello, is anyone there?" She gauged the distance between herself and the hole that marked the entrance into the remains of the shelter. Could she make it there in time. Hopefully Trunks was there. Maybe he would hear her if she screamed. In the distance a twig snapped, a thunderous noise in the subdued silence, causing her to jerk sharply. She whirled and faced down the sound, prepared to take flight if neccessary, to do anything that might save her life if need be. "Who's there?" Kami, don't let it be the artificial humans, though she dismissed that thought as it swept through her brain, they were far too pompous and daring to hide amongst the bushes waiting to strike, preferring to show down whatever poor creature had crossed their path. Who or what in the hell was it? Whatever it was lay directly between her and the entrance she so desperately needed to reach. Perhaps she should get her plane out and fly off, back to Vegeta. She could have tossed her pride aside for that couldn't she, for the life of her son and herself. He might be many things but he wouldn't let her die. He hadn't yet. She was reaching into her pocket, preparing to get her plane and go when she she heard it, spoken in such a hushed tone, a voice she knew yet didn't, a voice filled with fatigue and an almost weary resignation to life.
"Bulma?" The lean figure staggered out into the open, raggedy and torn.
"Yamcha?" She knew her voice must have registered her bewilderment. He was dead, killed by the artificial humans. How could he possibly be standing here now, staring at her. She stumbled forward hesitantly, afraid it was some kind of horrible illusion, rendered true by Gero's deranged brain. She had seen him die hadn't she? Hadn't she seen him shot in a burst of hellish, red light by the girl, Juuhachigou? She had believed him dead instantly, a gaping hole blown clean through his chest. She had remembered hiding among the rubble and the debri as they had all fought, throwing up repeatedly as she had seen them all slaughtered before her eyes. Piccolo, Tien, Krillin and Yamcha.She had managed to grab Gohan's limp, unconcious form without notice and hang onto it, eventually able to slither along the ground into a small nook, to hide,dragging Gohan's limp body with her, unable to help them in any way. Ashamed of her cowardice, but too afraid to go out and see if they were still alive. You'd have been dead too. The voice skimmed across her mind. Yes she would have been dead, for Juuhachigou and Juuanagou had spared no living creature that day, blasting even small birds in their desire to devestate everything. Vegeta's words from that very morning rang through her head, echoing in the unforgiving chambers of her deepest recesses.' What good are you..'. No that wasn't true, she had done as much as she could. She had saved him hadn't she. Only after the artificial humans had gone. Kami you left them to die. You might have been able to save them if you had been braver. A sob escaped her voice..Oh Kami, oh kami..she'd left him to die. "Ya..Yamcha, I thought..I thought you had died."Her voice broke in a strangled cry. She lurched over to him, grasping his torn orange gi for support. His hand shot out to steady her, pulling her into a loose embrace She hugged him ferociously, ignoring the mad torrent of tears that flowed down her face, hitting her bewildered son who valiantly tried to catch them. Bulma pulled back, her hand softly caressing every angle of his face, a sight she had thought to never see again.
"I'm not dead yet Bulma." He smiled at her with that cocky grin she had first fallen in love with. They had long since realized the futility of a relationship between them, but their friendship had survived and she loved him with all her heart as she loved Goku, as she had loved Krillin. They were family forever.
"Yamcha, what happened, where have you been?"The words were horribly inadequate for what she was feeling, but she couldn't give voice to anything else. She managed to stem the thick flow of tears, to gather her emotions, batter down the guilt.
"I've been around." She noticed the peculiar hesitation in his voice, but brushed it aside. He was probably exhausted and hungry. She needed to get him inside.
"Come on, you can tell us all about it inside. It's not safe out here. If Juuhachigou and Juuanagou decide to pop over for a visit, we are dead.
"It looks like they have already done a number on the place, Bulma." He allowed her to lead him to the entrance.
"Yeah, they have been here a couple of times. Last night actually."
"Are you alright?" He peered at her as if he was seeing her for the first time.
She nodded, not wanting to discuss Vegeta with him. It was always a sore topic and she wanted no fights, not right now. What in the hell would she say to him, you were right? He was only using me..he doesn't love me, but kami I love him.
"What about Goku? Did he survive?"
"Yes, but he isn't the same.You need to prepare yourself." She climbed down the ladder that lead to the entrance, taking care to not drop Trunks. "He's down here. He's going to be so thrilled to see you."
"Is he?" She drew back in surprise. What kind of question was that?
"Of course he is. Why would you even ask that?" Her surprise must have been evident on her face, for he quickly smiled, attempting to soothe it away with his charm.
"I just meant if he's been sick he might not want to be bothered."
"I guarantee Yamcha, he will want to see you. He's been so sad, especially with everyone he loved getting killed or at least so we thought.To know that someone survived the madness well...you might actually be what the doctor ordered." She had reached the door that led into the temporary shelter she had rigged up last night. "Shall we?" She smiled at him, trying not to let him see the guilt that she had buried down within herself, hiding it from everyone who would look. She couldn't face that, not yet, and so far she had managed to push back the paralyzing emotions that had threatened to spill forth when she had seen him. She would deal with it tonight alone, try to get a grip on what she felt, but for now it was time to put on her facade. The facade that said everything was alright. The facade that no one seemed to see beyond.
"You don't know how glad I am to see you Bulma." He smiled at her.
She hugged him again. "Not anywhere near as glad as we are to see you."
He spoke in her ear. "Don't bet on that Bulma, don't bet on that."
Vegeta was done. He needed a damn gravity room if he was going to get any stronger. This place was just not cutting it anymore. He would go to her and demand she make him one and if she gave him any trouble he would just remind her that she would die by the artificial humans if he did not get what he wanted. He paused for a moment, an insidious finger of apprehension sliding along his spine. What had brought that on? He had only really ever had that feeling while in the presence of Frieza, who was rotting in hell, but that feeling.... He shuddered involuntarily, unable to control the icy unease that glided sleekly into his bones filling every hollow , every nerve with its cool touch. He glanced around, nearly imperceptibly, ascertaining if he was alone, the muscles of his body tightening, preparing, waiting for whatever had set him off. He saw nothing, but still that feeling....he walked purposefully towards the water, hearing nothing but the slap of the waves against the shore and the occasional squawk of a bird overhead. Nothing to give any pause over. He shook himself, breaking the hold the feeling had procured over him, and rocketing into the sky, leaving the island behind and not bothering to look back.
"Costa, I have made contact with another potential patron, located on Chikyuu and...." Refallo paused for dramatic effect, savoring what he would tell Costa next, anticipating his reaction. " I have seemingly found a very real trace of our exhalted Prince." He had only happened upon it by the barest whisper of luck, mentioning the name Vegeta to the man who had offered to buy some of Frieza's leftover technology, mere scraps really, of what had once been a great empire. Gero had been his name, Doctor Gero. He was a scientist on Chikyuu and Refallo had been left with the very real sense that he was short a few decks, but he had lit up at the mention of Vegeta's name, had subtly questioned Refallo as to his connection with the Prince, listening intently as Refallo had filled him in...Perhaps we can help each other out, you and I..those had been his words and judging by the look of pure, unadulterated joyousness that transcended over Costa's face, he knew his decision to cut a deal with the scientist had been the correct one.
Costa leaned forward eagerly, tail lashing behind him. "Tell me, Refallo, tell me what you know."
Refallo smiled, his facial whiskers lifting up in his catlike face, reveling in the anticipation he saw upon his master's huge face. "He's on Chikyuu, Costa and ripe for the taking, with a beautiful lover and a son, a very real weakness. "
Costa smiled. This was better then he thought. A woman and a beautiful one at that. Men were fools where a beautiful woman was involved. "Who has given you this information?" He leaned forward, heavy brows knitted in concentration waiting for Refallo's every answer.
"Gero of Chikyuu. He will help us, Costa, he will help us for a price."
"Yes there is always a price isn't there Refallo. Tell me what is his price?"
"Some of Frieza's old technology, weapons, medical machinery, the like and Vegeta's woman. We may do what we want to Vegeta, but he will keep the woman that Vegeta calls his own."
"What if I don't agree to these terms, what if I wish to use his bitch to make him suffer."
"I suppose we could always go back on our word. It certainly wouldn't be the first time, or perhaps we can use her as we see fit, then give her to Gero. There are thousands of possibilities Costa, and most importantly you will have your revenge in Nappa's name. The blood debt will be settled."
"I suppose you are correct. I can bring Vegeta back to my holding on Maordi Prime, and drag out his death for as long as possible. I have found persecution and suffering to be a fine technique to garner one's vengenance. His mind would already be half crazed if I were to use the...woman..in some way to torture him." His smile was filled with malevolent promise, sending icy chills down Refallo's back. He did not envy Vegeta or his woman. They would undoubtedly wish they were dead before it was all over, though Refallo wondered who would wish it more Vegeta or the girl unlucky enough to have been his.
"Alright, Refallo, we will play this your way for now and see what happens when we get there.I cannot believe after all this time, I will finally see him pay for my brother's death. As he showed Nappa no mercy,neither shall I show him and when I am done, he will rue the day he was ever born. Set the Destroyer on its course..to Chikyuu."
Goku had not been able to believe his eyes, when Yamcha had been led in to the shelter, his tall, lean body directly behind Bulma who had been wearing a smile from ear to ear, something he had not seen since before the artificial humans had shown up. His shock must have been evident, because Bulma had laughed and assured him it was as he was seeing, Yamcha had not died, had somehow miraculously survived and shown up here some three months after his supposed death. Goku had felt a bevy of powerful emotions in nearly one millisecond of time..happiness, relief, guilt, curiosity..so many yet he could put no name to anyone of them while they had ran through him. He had stood shakily, still woozy from the attack of the night before, clasping Yamcha's hand and pulling his long time friend into a tight embrace. He had pulled back and seen the surprise evident on Yamcha's face. "It's the virus. It decimated my body. I'm not as strong as I used to be." He had tried to keep his voice neutral and carefree but both Bulma and Yamcha had seen right through him, both embracing him at the same moment and to Goku's very real shame, he had sobbed..sobbed in a way he could not do with Chi-Chi, the need to be strong for her, for Gohan rendering him incapable of tears, he sobbed for what he had been once with them, of what they had been together and of what they had become, what he had become..He was vaguely aware of them, crying as he was, all three locked in a tight embrace and had anyone entered the room at that particular moment they would have thought the three occupants had completely lost whatever sense they must have once had. He was the first to pull away, looking at his two childhood friends."I am so ahshamed I wasn't there to help you Yamcha, that you had to fight them on your own."
"Goku, it's alright. You couldn't have helped it. You would have just gotten yourself killed and then where would we be. You are going to get strong again. You have to believe that,we have to believe that or there is no hope." He pulled away and walked to the door, leaning against it. "We have to come up with some kind of plan, some form of action that will end Gero before he gets started."
"Well we have a few things, but first I would like to hear about how you got out.." she was interrupted by her future son's head poking throught the door.
"Mom..uh..Goku..I think..I think you had better come here."He turned his head and noticed Yamcha for the first time, his mouth falling open in shock. "Oh kami, Yamcha! what the hell..this is bizarre..I think all three of you had better come here."
Bulma glanced at Goku, raising her eyebrows and stood, following slowly. They had stopped at her parents small area first, letting them see Yamcha and handing over baby Trunks. Her father and mother had been overjoyed to see Yamcha alive, wondering how it was possible, a fact he had been strangely close mouthed about. She could feel him walking behind her with Goku and wondered again why she was so bothered by it. She should be happy he was alive, not so eaten up with avid curiousity that she allowed questions of where he'd been and of what had happened to him in the three months ruin his arrival. She turned the corner behind her son and nearly fainted, for in front of her, standing patiently waiting, were Krillin and Tien .Kami what was this? She vaguely felt someone's arms supporting her, it must be Trunks, and she heard the sharp intake of breath as Goku and Yamcha rounded the same corner and saw their believed dead friends in the room. Kami, three in one day, what was this and that they would all find a way back on the same day. She looked up at her son, who stood, holding her quietly, so much like his father, yet so different too. He'd been right..this was bizarre.
"Krillin? Tien? What...how.." For once Goku had no words. He had just aclimated himself to the idea that Yamcha was alive, had just managed to get over the shock, now this. He couldn't believe it. He stepped forward cautiously..afraid it was all a dream.
"Goku, how are you buddy?" Krillin stepped forward, tears running unchecked down his face, seeing his friend up and around for the first time since his fateful fight with the artificial humans. Goku slipped to his knees, overcome for the second time that day. Yamcha hurried to help him, met by Tien and Krillin. Bulma sat back and watched the reunion teary eyed. Kami, they were all alive, everyone was here except for Piccolo. She hugged her son.
"Come on, why don't we go and let them all have some privacy. You and I have things to accomplish anyway." She pulled her son towards the corridor.
Hey, Bulma, where are you going? " Yamcha looked at her curiously.
"Trunks and I are heading over to the Northern Canyons to check out some underground areas. Trunks thinks they'd make a good shelter for us, since this one has been ruined.That'll give you all some time to visit." She nodded pointedly at Goku. "I'll see you all later and you can fill me in on everything that happened to you."
"Alright..You two be careful." Yamcha turned back towards Goku, leaving her staring into Tien's void filled gaze, giving her an extremely disconcerted feeling. Why was this just so odd?
"Come on, " she forced herself to break contact with Tien's stangely empty gaze. Perhaps it had been a trick of the light, or just the residuals of her creeped out feeling from earlier. She wished she could get rid of it for good. "Let's get going Trunks. We have a lot to accomplish."
Gero leaned back in his chair, staring idly into space.The Northern Canyons. How interesting and how very fortuitous for him. His first real opportunity of getting a hold of the Briefs girl and the Saiyajin, Trunks. One he knew next to nothing about. He would prove useful however.His new spy had proven to be very successful already and he had only been in amongst the group for a mere moments. They were all so stupid, blindly accepting anyone into their fold, not bothering to question them. Well it had worked out for him.
"Juuanagou!" he called sharply for the boy, not wishing to brook an argument with the defiant artificial human or his equally defiant sister. He would have to wire that out of them, burn out the undesirable trait.
"Yes, Doctor Gero,"Juuanagou's near silent approach surprised him, making him uneasy. Yes he was going to have to make some definite modifications to their brains of that he was certain. He fingered the remote control unit in his pocket, being careful to give nothing away to this machine that was entirely too perceptive for its own good.
"I want you to take your sister and go to The Northern Canyons. There is going to be a small treat for you. Two of them actually. Bring them to me, unharmed." He could do things with the boy she had with her. He could be an even greater creation then these two were. He smiled. "Do you understand?"
"Yes, Doctor Gero." Juuanagou's silky voice glided over Gero's being, infusing him with an almost latent longing. For what he wasn't sure, but it was there and it disturbed him.
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