Don't own Dragonball Z...not making any money off of it...just having fun...
Vegeta moaned as a light flashed on above his head, blinding him. He shut his eyes against the glare. He had lain in this room for three days, his mind being assaulted from every which way, each day blending into the next. It had taken her little time to break down the wall he had erected in hopes of protecting himself. He didn't particularly care anymore. He had lost everything in one fell swoop. His planet, his father, his peace of mind and the most painful of all, Bulma. He longed to lay his head down on her shoulder, to have her hold him and tell him everything was going to be alright. He knew it was weak and unmanly of him, but he had stopped caring. Hadn't he been proven weak time and again by Frieza. He was a disgace to his Saiyajin heritage, what did one more weakness really matter?
"Vegeta, you can't keep your eyes shut forever." It was her voice. No more. He couldn't handle anymore. Tantris had done her job very well on him, invoking images that would have made his own father cower. She had probed his mind for every single thing she could find to use against him. He shuddered as he remembered the images she had invoked of Frieza. That had been terrible and it had been so real, like Frieza himself had really been there, like it had really happened. He had tried to tell himself that they weren't real, that it had never happened, but he wasn't sure he believed himself. He laughed to himself as he thought of his words to Bulma. A fool. He had actually called her a fool, dismissed her emotional state as ridiculous and weak, yet she had endured this as well and managed to come out of it still standing. He knew the link was still forged between the sorceress and Bulma. She was probably still tormenting her. He cringed at what she might have shown her. He hoped the Frieza images had been for him and him only. She had certainly used Bulma against him. Dredging up his anger at Kakkarot, images of them together in many different ways, laughing at him, taunting him. So real, yet he knew it wasn't. His guilt over Vegittasei. Yes, he understood exactly what Bulma had said. They had ripped him open, exposed the deepest, most private part of him and blown it apart. The very core of his being, of what he believed, of who he was, destroyed and shattered, leaving nothing but a hollow shell, that he had to somehow fill up again. The only problem was, he wasn't sure how he was going to do it and what he was going to use to fill it. He felt her hands touch his face, turn his head towards her. Left with little choice he opened his eyes, blinking again at the brightness of the room. She smiled.
"I understand why Lord Frieza has such a soft spot for you. You are absolutely magnificent." She bent down and pressed her mouth to his, biting his bottom lip with her sharpened teeth. He jerked away, drawing blood. She licked it off and smiled.
"Do you still want to kill me Vegeta? It looks to me like the only thing you can do now is lay there and take what I dish out. You are nothing without your energy. " To emphasize her point she trailed her fingers down his body. He had not one bit of energy to shove her away. She was like a leech, draining him dry of every bit he needed. He turned his head away, not wanting to look at her. It made him ill to not even be able to protect himself in the most basic way.
"Well, what should we do today? You know the little thing with Frieza seemed to really blow you away. Maybe we should try that again, except we will make it even more exciting, I do believe I can encourage you to experience it in an even higher level. It would be my pleasure."
Vegeta thought he was going to be sick. Not again, and he could only imagine what she was going to do to him. He thought of Bulma, of their brief time together. Maybe if he could think of that, he could override whatever she put in his mind. He shut his eyes as she entered his mind and prayed that it worked.
Kakkarot sat in the small chamber next to Toma. He awaited the return of his very own living, breathing nightmare, Sabrae, the sorceress from hell. He swallowed dryly imagining what she was going to be doing next. She was second in power only to Tantris, and very, very good at what she did. He looked at Toma, who sat, leaning weakly against the wall.
"I guess we are in it now, huh."
"It would appear that way."
"What do you think she is doing to Vegeta?"
"Something highly unpleasant, I'm sure." They hadn't seen Vegeta in a week. Toma wasn't even sure where he was. Frieza had seperated him out and given him to the lead sorceress. Toma had seen the look of desire on Frieza's face whenever he looked at Vegeta. It made him sick, and he could only imagine what horrors were in store for the boy. He remembered Bardock's own painful experience with that. Bardock had become an obsession for Frieza, more so with every denial. He had finally told Frieza no in the most horrible, vilest way possible and had suffered a severe, almost life-ending beating for his efforts. Frieza had left him alone then a bit. It had still been there, but somehow Bardock had found a way out. Vegeta would have to as well.He wasn't entirely sure Vegeta even really cared anymore. He had pretty much been destroyed already. Toma figured he would welcome death.He wanted to find a moment alone with him, to encourage him to keep fighting. He had plenty of reasons. Bulma being the singlemost important one. They had to get him motivated to fight back and get the hell out of here. So far, though, Frieza had kept him under lock and key, far away from the rest of them, something that was not good for his morale. His head jerked up as the door slid open. Sabrae stared down at them. Her orange hair flared around her shoulders. She smiled rather cruelly at Kakkarot.
"Are you ready, my love. We have many fun things to experience today."
Vegeta had managed to sit up. He had accomplished it when he had thrown up. He raised a shaky hand and touched his face. It wasn't real. It wasn't real. He had to keep telling himself that. Frieza is just tormenting you, it never really happened. He kept trying to tell himself that, over and over. His breath caught in a ragged sob. The things she had made him see, today, and she had been right, she had managed to make him feel it on a whole new level. He leaned over and threw up again. He had to find a way out of this, before he was completely destroyed. He slid to his feet on the floor, trying to accomplish the simple task of walking, he staggered and fell to his knees, his energy so completely depleted that he couldn't even do that. If he could only kill her, then it would be over for him and for Bulma. She had gotten a hold of his small fear today.The fear that she would give these images to her. She had more then done that, she had sent everything he was feeling,every raw emotion, so completely overwhelming the girl on the receiving end, Vegeta had literally felt her mind cave in. He had heard her voice, heard her calling to him through the link forged by Tantris and then it had been gone. He had sobbed her name over and over, trying to reconnect with her, it didn't matter what she had been forced to see. Any shame he had felt had disappeared when he had felt her presence in his mind, heard her voice. She was like a balm for his soul, a reason to hang on, then she was gone. She was still alive and she was out there.For a brief moment he felt like living again. He wondered, briefly if there was some way he himself could forge a link with her. If their being connected to Tantris could hold some small benefit. He wanted to try, he just wasn't sure how to. He cursed himself for being this weak, for needing her so badly, but it no longer seemed to really matter.He had been stripped of his pride very efficiently.He was fast on his way to becoming a broken man, what did it really matter if he expressed a need for Bulma and he did need her. He needed her now in a way he had never thought possible. He braced himself on the floor with his arms, trying to stand up. Maybe he could make it back to his little table and lay down. He heard the door slide open, yet again and cursed. Not again, he wouldn't be able to take it again.Not this soon. He felt an arm go around his back, trying to help him, he shoved it off.
"Vegeta, I'm trying to help you."
He looked up into the Parisia's face. "Get away from me bitch. I don't need your help."
"You can call me all the names in the world.I am not going to leave you laying here like this. Let me help you up."
He looked at her for a moment, finally allowing her to help him. She helped him over to the table and pushed him down gently. "Are you alright?"
He laughed bitterly. "What do you think?"
"I'm sorry about Vegittasei."
"I'm sorry about a lot of things Vegeta. I'm sorry you are here, suffering this way. It shouldn't be happening to you. It's all that stupid girl's fault. "
He looked at her for a moment in amazement. Bulma's fault. How was any of this Bulma's fault. Did she actually believe what she was saying? She had been the one to start the whole mess up with her open betrayal of him. She had been the direct cause of all his misery and Bulma's too. He reached up and grabbed the neck of her gown, yanking her close to his face.
"You are the bitch that has brought me here. Because of you, my mate is on Hell, probably suffering more then you will ever experience in a lifetime. My planet was destroyed because of your manipulations. You are the cause of this, you have sealed your death sentence as far as I am concerned and when I can, I will find you and kill you. Count on it." He released her and shoved her away, his anger had taken the rest of his energy, leaving him breathing heavily.
"How can you say that. Vegeta I love you. I want to be with you, to help you. Maybe I made some mistakes, but that doesn't change the feelings. Does the night we shared together mean nothing to you?"
"The night together? Are you so stupid that you think that meant anything to me? I used you like the whore you are. I wanted to cause you pain.I can't stand you. I have never been able to stand you. My mistake was not realizing how sick you were. That pain was a turn on for you. Had I known, I promise it would never have happened. "
"Funny, you seemed to enjoy yourself."
"Not by choice." The thought of her touching him, his tail, made him want to be sick again.
"I suppose it is different with Bulma."
"Don't speak her name to me. Whatever we share is none of your concern."
"I can make you respond Vegeta and you are powerless to stop me. How would Bulma feel if she knew we had been together yet again. That you couldn't resist me." She reached out to stroke his tail.
He closed his eyes. "Knock yourself out bitch."
She smiled and continued her ministrations. "I won't force you to do anything you wouldn't want. I would prefer if you would come to me of your own free will. I would like to experience what ever it is that you share with her."
"You will be waiting a long time."
"I wonder. Every man has needs Vegeta. You are no different. Tell me does Tantris invoke pleasant images for you? Images that make you feel like a man? Eventually you will need some kind of solace. I am more then willing to give it to you." She trailed her fingers up his leg, brushing alongside his manhood. He was pleased when there was no response at all.
"I'd rather fuck Tantris."
She smiled. "I am sure that could be arranged for you."
"For now." She left with out a backwards glance.
He closed his eyes and tried to concentrate, to find Bulma's mind again, but he was so tired. He would rest for a bit, while he could and then he would try again. Maybe some rest was all he would need.
Bulma sat huddled next to her brother in the transport ship that was taking them to the Planet Hell. She had heard stories of Hell and none had been pleasant. A place where monsters live. That was what her nanny had told her. She shivered. Now she was going there. How had she gotten to this point? She looked at her brother who lay asleep next to her. So far he had shown no ill effects from the shot that had been given him. Tantris had clearly shown her exactly what it was going to do and it obviously was going to be a slow and agonizing process. She brushed a lock of hair off of his forehead. He was so handsome with his blonde hair and green eyes and so very strong too. A catch for any woman. He should have been able to live a long life, to marry and have kids. Unless she could find some way to help him, he was never going to have any of it. He shifted next to her but didn't wake up. Maybe that was for the best. He needed his rest and Tantris still made visits to her mind, the last one had being excruciatingly painful. She had felt certain that somehow Tantris had linked her to Vegeta's mind, somehow using her in her torture of him. She had thought her visions had been horrible. It had become clear to her on Vegittasei that Frieza held some sort of desire for Vegeta, he was perhaps an obsession. She had heard that was the way his tastes ran anyway. If what she had seen was what they were feeding into his mind, then she doubted he would keep his sanity long. She felt hopeless despair at not being able to do anything to help him.The emotions that she had felt emanating from him in their brief link had been overwhelming. Shame, helplessness, even fear, and then the strongest of all had been anger and outrage and finally denial. She had tried to reach out to him, to help him somehow, but the link had been severed as quickly as it had been forged.Though she could still feel the imprint of his emotions stamped onto her very soul. She was deathly afraid for him. He had so much pride, more then your average man should be allowed to have, to have it all ripped from you so suddenly and completely. He wouldn't know how to deal with it. She would pay more attention to Tantris when she linked with her, maybe she could find someway to reach him, to help him. They still had a week to go until they reached Hell. Trying to help might take her mind off of his suffering and her brother's predicament as well. She looked around at the motley assembly of souls that were being sent to Hell. Britton had told her , her parents were there. She had every hope of finding them. Maybe her father would know someway to help out. If he is still alive. She tried to ignore the unwanted thought that crossed her mind.Would she survive? She laid her head back against the wall, feeling light headed. It was probably the close quarters and lack of decent food. She hadn't eaten a decent meal in ages. Maybe she should take a nap, try to rest up for her next bout with Tantris. Especially if she was going to have to stay alert enough to find a way through to Vegeta. If there was someway to keep them connected. She could help him survive and perhaps he could help her. She was so tired, more tired then she could ever remember being. She laid her head down on her brother's shoulder and closed her eyes. She had better get what rest she could. She had a feeling it was going to be a much different story on Hell.
Kakkarot stared up into the green eyes of his tormentor.He had never known a hatred as strong as this. He wasn't sure who he hated more right now, Sabrae or Frieza. It could be a toss up. He wanted so badly to wrap his fingers around her neck and squeeze. He moaned as she persisted in probing into the deepest recesses of his mind. She had even come up with a fleeting image of the girl on Chikyuu. He hadn't liked where she had gone with that. He had miraculously been able to keep his father's location to himself, but he wasn't sure how much longer he could hold onto that. Nothing was his own anymore. Every feeling, every thought, anything of any import to him had been drug out and ripped apart in his mind. His inner peace shattered. How did anyone survive this? He wasn't sure he was ever going to be alright again. He wondered fleetingly how Vegeta was, Toma and Bulma. He hoped she was alright. She probably had it worse then they did. He held onto that thought, trying to make himself stronger with it. If Bulma could survive this, then so could he.
Toma held onto the small transmitter tightly, as if afraid it would disappear. It was his one connection to Bardock and perhaps their ticket out of here.He had said nothing to Kakkarot about it because of the sorceress. He had made his escape from the cell awhile ago. He had lucked out. Frieza didn't seem so intent upon making him suffer. Most of his rage was directed towards Kakkarot, but mostly Vegeta. He didn't doubt that Vegeta was suffering as he had never suffered before. He and Bardock had come up with this idea, shortly before they had left Cusanta. If they got into trouble or needed help. It was a special connection that would go straight to Bardock's own transmitter. He had fashioned it together before they left, setting them both on the same frequency. He would stay behind and get everyone off of Cusanta and moved to Chikyuu, but if Toma rasied him on the transmitter, he would come running. He had Raditz with him and together they could do something. Toma figured this was as much trouble as any to be in. He clicked it on.
"Bardock." He heard nothing but dead air. He tried again.
"Toma? Where the hell are you? Where is Kakkarot?"
"Well, its a rather long story old friend, but I could sure use that help you promised me."
"What have you gotten yourself into now,Toma?" He could sense the other man's smile.
"Frieza wasn't too happy about us trying to overthrow him. He has us on his ship now. All of us except for Bulma that is."
"Where in the hell is she?"
"He sent her to Planet Hell. Her and her brother."
"Yes, and needless to say Vegeta isn't doing very well. They have us all linked up to the sorceresses, but Frieza has been going at it harder with Vegeta and Kakkarot."
"Is..is my son alright?" Toma heard the fear in Bardock's voice.
"He's holding up, but I haven't seen him for awhile. He's strong though, Bardock. He can hold on. "
"I suppose you are right."
"Bardock, there is something else, Frieza destroyed Vegittasei. He blew it up as if it was nothing but a toy he was tired of playing with. " Toma's voice was raw with emotion.
"I know, I felt it." He could hear the small catch in his friends voice.
"How long until you can get here. We could really use that help."
"I just sent the ship off to Chikyuu a few hours ago with Raditz. We worked our asses off to get it done. I have the ship that Vegeta and Raditz came in. Where are you now?"
"I'm not sure. Let me try to find out, then I'll contact you."
"Alright . I'll be waiting for you. "
" I'll be quick."
"Take care .."
Toma smiled as he clicked off. Bardock had remained stoutly loyal to his crew and most especially Toma. It was good to know he had someone on his side. He looked around down the hall. Before he found out where they were, he wanted to try to find Vegeta. He had to be here somewhere. He wanted to see the boy, see if he was alright. He and Kakkarot had been kept together, but they had isolated Vegeta. That was not good. It bred hopelessness and despair, a bad combination when you were trying to survive. He tried several rooms, all were empty. The last door he came to was in an isolated corridor, far removed from the main prisoner block, he hit the entry button. He had hit the jackpot. He was asleep on the table. Outwardly he didn't look any worse for the wear. It was his mental condition that Toma was concerned about. He crossed the room and looked down at him. His rest didn't particularly look like it was peaceful. Probably the sorceress. He looked around the sterile room. Nothing but the table. It was as if they were doing medical experiments on him. He reached out a hand and touched Vegeta's arm lightly, not wanting to startle him. His eyes shot open immediately, darting around wildly, trying to ascertain where the threat was.
"Vegeta, relax. It's Toma. I'm not here to harm you."
Vegeta relaxed in slow increments. Relieved to see it wasn't Tantris come to torture him. "Toma," he rasped, "What are you doing here?"
"I came to see how you were holding up."
"I'm alright. You should be more worried about yourself."
Toma gave him a doubtful look. "Don't be so proud boy, We need to work together if we are going to get out of here."
"I'm not going anywhere. I can't even walk, Toma. What's the point of even trying."
"Are you content to let Bulma rot on Hell? She's not going to get off without someone to help her or was I mistaken in thinking that you might actually give a damn about someone besides yourself." He was pleased when Vegeta's eyes flared in anger.
"How am I supposed to help her, when I can't even help myself. Do you think I am happy that I can't even protect my own mate? That she's not with me where she belongs, that she's slaving on that hellhole? I'm supposed to be the legendary super Saiyajin, but I can't even keep my mind from being invaded by that stupid bitch. I can't even fight back and help my woman." His voice broke, he clamped his jaw shut, unwillinging to break down in front of Toma. Not wanting to admit anymore.
"No one can Vegeta. It's their skill. The best you can do is survive it and not give up. You are many things, but a coward is not one of them. You have to keep fighting. We will find a way out and we will find a way to get Bulma. She hasn't given up on you. Don't give up on yourself. "
Vegeta sighed. He wanted to believe that, but what was the use? Tantris was never going to relent.Frieza wouldn't allow it. He tensed as he felt her at the fringes of his mind. "She's coming Toma. You had better go."
"Remember what I said Vegeta. Don't let go of your hope."
Vegeta said nothing, just turned to stare impassively at the wall. He snorted. Hope. That had been the first thing they had taken from him. He needed to fortify himself for the next round of mental onslaught.Toma shook his head and hurried out the door. Now it was time to do a little spying. See what he could find out about their location. The sooner they were off this ship the better.
Tantris entered the room a few moments after Toma had left. Vegeta had closed his mind to everything. He turned his head as she entered the room. She smiled coldly at him.
"Are we ready to play, Prince. I have had an even better idea this time. "
He shut his eyes and prepared himself for the worst.
Bulma felt her there at the fringes of her mind. She had been concentrating for over an hour, waiting for her to open the link. It seemed to her that the link had to work both ways. She should be able to get inside Tantris's head as easily as she went into hers. It was only a matter of realizing that you could do it. That might be the only way she could get through to Vegeta. She wasn't disappointed.It was obviously very easy to link to her when she was being active and she was most definitely active right now. Vegeta no doubt. She could make out the vague images she was showing him. Frieza again, but somehow worse. Was that Zarbon? She shuddered. Tantris was a sick, twisted creature. If she was going to get through to him, now was the time. If nothing else she could force her out to deal with her and not him.
Vegeta. She said his name in her mind. Can you hear me? She got nothing back. She tried again more persistently. Dammit Vegeta..let me hear you....please....Vegeta.
What in the hell do you think you are doing you little bitch. Tantris. She was making progress.
I want to talk to Vegeta.
Sorry, Vegeta and I are occupied at the moment.
Vegeta. She tried again. Maybe he could hear her. Vegeta please I need you..
Bulma? The voice was shaky and weak, but it was unmistakeably his. The rich, deep voice filled her head. She sobbed with relief. Listen Vegeta, just hang on okay. Use me if you need to. She can't get rid of me with the link.
She heard nothing, then Tantris's voice rang in her head loud and clear. DO you really want to experience his suffering. I can arrange that. It was what Bulma had counted on. It would be her one shot at it, she didn't doubt that Tantris would make sure of it when she saw what she was going to do, but this had to help him somehow. Woman, no..his voice sounded so weak ..., I don't want you to do this..
Alright Tantris, lets have it. She wasn't disappointed. She cringed as she saw Frieza touching Vegeta. God what he was being forced to endure. She sucked in her breath as the emotions came rushing at her. She could feel his outrage that she was doing this, his anger. That was good. He could be as angry with her as he wanted, it meant he was feeling something other then despair..
She focused all her energy on her own memories. Memories of them making love, of him touching her. The love she felt for him. She sent them to him as strongly as she could, trying to override the images and feelings Tantris was hitting him with.
Vegeta lay on the table, Tantris deep in his mind. Frieza was all over him, Bulma was watching this. No he couldn't let her see this. It was sickening.She would despise him. He moaned with the effort of trying to kick her out. She wouldn't budge, then he saw them. It was them. The night they had finally made love. She was pushing out the images of Frieza with her own. How? He heard Tantris's growl of frustration. Bulma was all over him, kissing him, touching him. He could feel her next to him caressing him. I love you Vegeta. Don't let go of that, no matter what.Then she was gone. Tantris severed the connection to his mind. He gasped with the force of Bulma's entry. How had she done that? It had been stronger then Tantris. He looked up at her. She looked angry. She will pay for that later.
Tantris turned and stalked off. The little bitch had used their mind link against her. She would have to be better prepared for it next time.She had screwed up when she had opened up access to Vegeta's mind previously. They had a mind link that was tied together now. Somehow the girl had figured that out. She just hoped Vegeta didn't.
Vegeta couldn't believe what had just happened. Bulma. It hadn't been much, but it had been enough to get Tantris off him for awhile. He closed his eyes and relaxed. She wouldn't be back for awhile. Not until she could figure out how to get around Bulma. He smiled.
Bulma had done it. Somehow she had done it. She had finally figured out how to connect to him. It was so easy.They were all linked together in Tantris's mind. When Tantris had opened up Vegeta's mind earlier to her, she had been able to get back in. It had allowed her access. She didn't doubt that Tantris would find a way to close it, but at least this time she had helped him. She looked over at her brother. He was still out. She leaned back against the wall. She felt horrible. She was so light-headed. It must be all the energy she had used doing that. She closed her eyes and tried to rest.
Toma had the information he needed. They were on their way to Correnia. He had overheard two guards discussing the planet previously. He assumed because King Vegeta had been killed in the destruction of Vegittasei that Frieza needed to appoint a new leader. That wouldn't be too big a trip for Bardock. They could be off this ship in days.
"Bardock," he called softly into the transmitter.
"Toma," Bardock's voice sounded sleepy as if he had just been roused.
"Must be nice to have time to sleep."
"Whatever Toma. What do you have for me?"
"Correnia. We will be on Correnia in a matter of days."
"So will I. I'll leave now and hide the ship. Contact me when you are there. We'll make our plans then."
"Sounds good. Take care old friend."
"You too and Toma....watch out for Kakkarot."
Toma smiled and clicked off. Now he needed to get back to the cell. He hoped they hadn't discovered him missing. He might be sharing Vegeta's and Kakkarot's fate then. He slunk back to the cell in the shadows, using every bit of his Saiyajin skills. To his relief, the cell was empty. Now he just needed to wait for Kakkarot, and see what they had done to the boy.
Bulma threw up for the third time that day. What was wrong with her. She had been sick the past two mornings. Her brother watched her with concern.
"Are you sure you're alright Bulma?"
She nodded."I think it is just all that has happened. It might have been too much for me." She refused to acknowledge the very real possibility that she was pregnant. Normally she would have been happy to be carrying Vegeta's child, but this was not a good time to have it. They had docked on Hell that morning and were waiting to get off. There were no windows where they were, so she had not yet gotten her first glimpse of the planet. To be pregnant now, would be disastrous to say the least. Not to mention the father was as far from her as he could possibly be. She hadn't been able to get through to Vegeta again since that initial success. Tantris had evidently found a way to seperate the links. She hoped what she had done had at least given him a brief respite from the things being done to him. She had not been troubled at all by Tantris for the remainder of the week. She supposed that would come to a screeching halt soon. The woman was nothing if not persistent and she would probably be angry for the previous intrusion. She let her brother help her up and they walked hand in hand to the line that was being formed to exit the ship. She felt her brother squeeze her hand. She looked up at him and squeezed back. They were in this together. She just hoped they could find a way out of it. She thought again of Vegeta. She hoped he was okay. She had been so mad the last time she had seen him, mad at his apparent betrayal with Parisia, mad at his inabilty to say I love you. It all seemed so trivial now. She had told him she loved him before they brought her here. At least if she didn't get off this planet, he would know exactly how she felt. She felt another wave of nausea wash over her. This was definitely not good.
How many times had they made love that night. He had an incredible stamina. Probably because he was a Saiyajin. He had woken her up at least four times to make love to her. She had woken him up once and then there were the three times that had started it off. Wow, she probably was pregnant. It was so intense, this almost unquenchable desire for another person. She could never seem to get enough of him. She was amazed she had been able to sustain it that long. She had been sore the next day, but that had seemed unimportant to her with everything else she was going through. That had been almost three weeks ago. She couldn't believe it. She would give anything to be safe and sound with him in a huge bed, somewhere. The memory of how his body touched hers made her mouth run dry. She looked up as she saw guards coming down the ramp towards the prisoners. They were herded up the ramp and out another exit in the ship. Her first view of Hell was mindblowing. They were in an enclosed dock of some sort, but hte walls of the dock were transparent and the planet could be seen clearly. Never in her wildest imagination could she have ever conjured up this. It was hot, even in the filtered air of the enclosed building. Hotter then anything she had ever experienced. She felt a thin layer of sweat pop up on her body almost immediately. The entire face of the planet, for as far as she could see burned with fire. Vibrant, leaping flames of red and orange for as far as the eye could see. How did they keep it away from the fuel mines where people worked? The guards were some type of huge lizard. Brutish, disgusting and ugly. She had forgotten the name of their species. They held long rods and she could see them using them on poor unfortunate souls who were too slow or clumsy. They shot off some kind of energy through their body. They guards wore electro whips at their waist. Well this was certainly not going to be a walk in the park. She wondered again if their parents were still alive and if they were, where were they? She watched a guard walk slowly down the line, clipboard in hand. He seemed to be taking inventory of all the people that had been sent here. He would send them off with a violent shove when he was done. She felt her stomach roil again. God, if she was pregnant, she was going to have to do whatever she had to to protect this baby's life. It was the one part of Vegeta, she had left. She wasn't about to let it go. It would only hasten her departure off this planet. She couldn't bring a baby into the world on it. She wiped her brow as the sweat dripped down her face. She could use a drink, but doubted seriously they would give her one. The guard was one person away from her. Time to be strong Bulma. You have too much to lose if you aren't. She felt Britton squeeze her hand.
"We'll be seperated Bulma. I will find a way to you alright, just do what they say and stay brave."
She nodded and wordlessly looked at the huge guard that now towered over her.
He looked down his list. Spotting her name he crossed it off and barked at her. "It says here you have been assigned to the repairs division of the fuel line. You will cross the dock and enter the black building directly in front of you. You will be taken to your assigned position at that time. You are a prisoner on this planet. Do not forget that and you will not suffer unduly. However if you step out of line,it will be our pleasure to remind you exactly what your position is. Do you understand me?"
She nodded. She winced as his clawed hand grabbed her shoulder and shoved her in the direction she needed to go. She glanced back at her brother. He gave her a small smile then took his own turn with the brutish guard. She made her way to the building he had pointed out to her. It was like a docking terminal, filled with crowds of people, She was pushed through the door and in front of a young woman, who could be no older then she herself was.
"Here, these are the regulation clothes you are to wear. They will be cooler then what you have on now." Her voice was cool and clipped, almost robotic.
Bulma looked at them. They were simple and basic. White tee shirt and white pants, made of a light, breathable material. She accepted them and a pair of black boots were handed to her next.
"These will be neccessary for treading through the fuels on the pipeline. They will help you keep your grip on it. It can become slippery with fuel. you will receive your breathing masks when you report for work."
"How do they keep the fire off the pipeline?"
The girl looked around her for a moment. Satisfied she would not get punished for speaking she simply said, "There is a chemical that is sprayed in parameters around the work areas and living areas. It repels the fire, for the most part."
"For the most part?" What did that mean?
"Enough. You will cause me trouble with your questions. You will see everything for yourself. Here this is the code to your room. The location is near your work area. It is yours and yours alone. You will find it to be very small, but it will serve your needs. You will eat with the rest of the prisoners at the alotted feeding times, twice a day. Now the shuttle to your left will take you directly to where you need to go. Do not linger. They will beat you if you linger. If you work efficiently and quickly, they will mostly leave you alone. You will be expected to start work in two hours."
"Two hours?" So soon?
"Yes, do not waste time. They will make your life hell if you give them reason to. "
Bulma nodded and turned towards the shuttle she had been shown. She could see other people on it. People just like her, whose lives had been turned upside down simply because Frieza said so. She walked slowly towards it, knowing that once she got on it, her life as she knew it was over. There had to be a way off this place. There had to be.
Bardock had landed on Correnia exactly two hours ago. He had landed the ship in a shelter of rocks and huge cliffs. It would be hard to discern if you didn't know it was there. They should be arriving anytime. He worked his way up slowly over the cliffs that seemd to take up the majority of this planet. He tried not to look down at the blue ocean below him as it thundered and beat against the cliff walls. He had tried to land fairly close to the palace. He couldn't risk flying . If, by chance, they had landed already,they'd pick him up on their scouters. He assumed they would be going to the palace. Frieza at least would. He lost his grip on the rock he'd been gripping and slipped down a bit. He caught himself quickly, then hung there, gasping for breath. This was taking everything he had. He had obviously not been cut out for this lifestyle. He clenched his teeth and began the arduous task of regaining the ground that he had lost, cursing anything and everything he could possibly think of. At this rate it was going to take him hours to reach the plateau. Why did his life always have to be so damn difficult.
Frieza sat and waited for the Prince of Vegittasei to be drug before him. Tantris had told him of the girls intrusion into their sessions and of her success in overpowering Tantris's link. He had been most displeased. Tantris should have been smarter then that. He was furious with the girl too. Once again she was intruding upon his own personal relationship with Vegeta. She had set him back in his complete and utter domination over the Prince. He had sent a message to Hell, to his lead Captain to ensure that she was properly punished for her insolence and watched closely for any other show of spirit. He would see her broken as well. He had warned her that Vegeta was not for her. Maybe now she would pay attention. He had doubleteamed Vegeta, having his mind attacked with a fury even he, Frieza, could cringe at. He had watched as Sabrae and Tantris both worked him over at the same time, digging deeply for all and any thought that they could use against him. He had fought as much as one could fight, held himself as long as he could, then inevitably he had lost the battle. He had been, in the end , too drained to even move. They had stripped him of his very soul, using everything he felt and thought against him, his woman, his father, his own guilt. They had done it together, completely overwhelming his mind to the point of delusion. He still hadn't begged much to Frieza's displeasure. Just laid on the table and stared. Frieza had at least enjoyed the look of dazed defeat that had shown brightly in the Prince's eyes. It wasn't as good as listening to him beg for mercy, but he figured that was just a footstep away. The Prince had at long last lost his pride,his mind linked to two sorceresses, each using him over and over , whenever they wanted to. His mind theirs for the taking. He was unable to stop it. Frieza smiled. Yes, it had been a very good time indeed. He had waited so long for the complete damnation of the Prince. It was finally upon him and the girl was the key.
Vegeta lay on the floor of his cell willing himself to die. Nothing else mattered except his death. Maybe then this would stop. Bulma, he thought weakly. You let her down. What did it matter. She would be dead too. No one could survive Hell for long. Did he love her? He had, with an intensity that frightened him. He had been raised not too love, but the first moment he had laid his eyes on her, touched her, heard her yelling at him, he had known he was completely hers. He was sorry it had taken her abduction for him to realize that. It hurt that he hadn't even been able to tell her in some small way. He supposed it didn't matter now.They had taken everything completely away from him. His peace of mind, his pride, his heritage. He had nothing left. They had all been stripped from him very meticulously by Tantris and Sabrae. He didn't care now, whether he lived or died, whether he defeated Frieza. Bulma. All he felt was an overwhelming sadness that it had come to this, that he would never have the chance to touch her again, to declare his love. Maybe if he could have heard Bulma's voice, felt her again, he could have fought harder, but she had deserted even his mind and he just couldn't fight it alone. Not anymore. He wasn't sure what was real and not real anymore. He heard the cell door open. He lay there impassively as two hands rolled him over.
"Vegeta!" Kakkarot's face filled his view.
"Kakkarot, what do you want." His mouth was so dry. They hadn't given him any water in days. He thought he might be dehydrated.
"Vegeta, my father is here. We're getting out of here. Come on."
"Let me go, Kakkarot. I'm finished."
"What? How can you say that Vegeta. We can get out of here now."
"It doesn't matter. I just want to die."
"I can't believe this is the Prince of The Saiyajins talking. My god Vegeta, are you willing to give up that easily? I never thought you were the kind to do that. Obviously I was mistaken."
"Fuck off, Kakkarot, what do you know? "
"I know that there is a monster we have to kill, for the sake of this galaxy, for the sake of our heritage and our planet. I know that there is a woman out there that needs your help. If you don't survive, what chance will she have? Does she really mean that little to you .Vegeta you are the legendary. You have to rise up and claim it."
"How Kakkarot? I can't even move."
"We'll get the sorceresses. If they die then the links are broken. It's all there right within your grasp. You just have to take it. "
"They broke my mind Kakkarot."
"No they didn't Vegeta. None of it was real. They only win if you let them. You can take it back. Beyond this day there is another. You only have to reach it."
"God Kakkarot, get off the soapbox."
Kakkarot laughed. "Only if you get your act together. You can't give up. It may seem like were down, but we aren't. Not by a long shot."
Vegeta grimaced as he tried to sit up. Kakkarot helped support him. "I'm nothing until the sorceresses are killed. They keep sucking my energy out."
"Don't worry, we'll get you off the ship and to a safe place, then Toma and I will come back and kill them. Frieza is off ship."
"Where are we"
"Bulma's home." He spoke quietly.
"Not anymore." Kakkarot was blunt.
Vegeta nodded grimly. "Kakkarot, I'm going to be the one that kills Tantris. It is my right. She has dishonored me."
"That's all well and fine Vegeta, but how do you propose doing that when you can't even walk."
Vegeta smirked. "Didn't you say I'm the legendary Kakkarot. There is nothing beyond my reach."
"You sure changed your tune fast."
Vegeta scowled at the younger Saiyajin. "Shut up Kakkarot. I don't want to have to admit my weaknesses to your third class ass."
"You have a weakness?"He flashed the Prince a quick grin.
Vegeta growled at him. He still hadn't forgotten his stunt with Bulma. The third class loser was becoming far too familiar with his Prince.
"Alright Vegeta, let's just concentrate on getting out of here. We can figure a way to kill the sorceresses later." He tried to help him stand up, but Vegeta pushed him away.
"I'll do it myself." He staggered to his feet, surprising himself. The damn bitch had kept him so drained he had barely been able to turn his head. Was she letting up. His head jerked up as the door slid open.
"Well, well Vegeta, it seems you have company. Kakkarot, should I go tell Sabrae that you've been a bad boy? She was just telling me she wasn't sure who's reaction she enjoyed more yours or Vegeta's?Maybe she could do a little test. " She walked to Vegeta and trailed her hand up his chest. " I know who I certainly prefer. No offense Kakkarot."
"None taken." He looked worriedly at Vegeta.
"I tell you what Kakkarot. Frieza has called for Vegeta. Seems he has some rather interesting news for him. Since your such a good boy,I'll allow you to come too. Frieza has a soft spot for you as well. Tell me did you enjoy the fantasies that Frieza sent you. I know Vegeta did."
Kakkarot blanched at the memory of that encounter with Sabrae. He looked at Vegeta who wore a look of sick remembrance as well.
Vegeta stared at the sorceress who had brought him so much misery. He knew he would be haunted by those stupid images she'd forced on him for the rest of his life. Real or unreal, they'd been too awful to ever forget. He clenched his fists. He was going to enjoy killing her. He arched his fingers. He wanted to wrap them around her neck right now. He held back. He wasn't ready yet. She looked at him, assesingly and smiled. Was she reading his thoughts right now? He didn't feel her.
"Let's go. Frieza wants you cleaned up for him.I have relented a bit on the link, but don't worry, if you try anything silly, I'll have you on your knees." She led them down the hall to another room. It was filled with the Saiyajin armor of their home. Frieza had taken a liking to the well-made armor. It was protective yet non constrictive and made of a very light armor. He had adopted it as his own armies look. Vegeta looked at Kakkarot. She was so confident she could control them. She wasn't even bothering to enter their minds. Vegeta clenched his fists again. This was as good a time as any to kill the bitch. He raised his hand slowly, unable to believe she would be this careless. This wasn't right, still could he afford to lose this opportunity? He released the blast just as she leapt into the air and landed behind him, kicking him across the back and into the armor. Kakkarot attempted to leap on her, but one carefully placed swing sent him flying back as well.
"My, my you two are being bad boys. I guess I'll have to tell Frieza that you haven't been as broken as he thought you were. Maybe this time Vegeta, he'll take it out on your bitch and make you watch." She laughed. "That would be good. Did you know that she has already received one beating for her little stunt with you. She received it just today and with the electro-whip to. That had to be painful. I confess I had a small hand in how things went." She smiled at the look of rage that contorted Vegeta's face. "Too bad, you can't help her. I think Frieza plans on being very hard on her."She smiled. "He doesn't like that she thinks to lay claim to you. He's so possesive of what's his."
Vegeta had lost all sense of reason.They had beaten her with an electro-whip. He would see this bitch dead and he would see it done by his own hand. He roared in outrage and flew at her, taking her by surprise. He landed a blow to her face, sending her careening into a pile of armor. He was upon her in milliseconds, grasping her by the throat, lifting her up, choking the life out of her. He felt more power then he had ever felt before running through his veins. He smirked at the look of disbelief that crossed her face. How pathetic.
"How?" She gasped out as her life drained from her body. He could have snapped her neck quickly, had it over in seconds, but he wanted her to suffer. He wanted her to feel despair on the order that she gave it out, to know that her life now belonged to another, and he would show no mercy. He didn't answer only tightened his hold,slowly, agonizingly. He watched impassively as the life slipped from her, throwing her aside like a broken doll when it was over.
"I am the Prince of the Saiyajins bitch, the legendary foretold. That's how." He spat the words out, his blood still pounding in his ears. How dare they touch his mate that way. He would see them all dead.
"Vegeta?" Kakkarot's voice intruded into the black cloud of rage that had settled over him.
"What do you want Kakkarot?" He breathed deeply, trying to clear the angry fog from his mind.
"I..uh..well..that was really ..." He was speechelss. He had never seen Vegeta attack anything like that before. He really was the legendary. It became clear to him then, how Frieza would die. It would be Vegeta. Vegeta had the rage, the eternal fire burning in his soul. He would never be satisfied until he had completely wiped the universe free of Frieza's vile touch.
"Quit babbling Kakkarot. I'm not in the mood for it. Let's get some new armor and get the hell out of here." He searched the room for some new armor, Kakkarot following suit. Vegeta threw the piles of armor off the shelves they rested on. He found what he was looking for. He hastily pulled on the blue spandex pants and shirt, grabbing some light armor to go over it. He turned his nose up in distaste at the sight of his old armor. It was filthy and smelled of his previous gloom and despair. How pathetic was he? They had even had to drag him to the refresher stations. At least he'd been spared the humiliation of defiling himself. By all that was holy, he would see them all pay. They would pay for Vegittasei and for his father and for Bulma. If they harmed her, if she had even one mark on her body, he would make them suffer as they had never suffered before. He would go to Hell, get her and then destroy it. It would be a nice wake-up call to Frieza. Then he would ascend to the next level, kill Frieza and take this universe as his. Bulma would rule by his side and there would be no one who would be able to challenge him. He was the strongest warrior in the universe and the mere thought that he had lost sight of that for even one moment sickened him. He had allowed himself to become too weak, perhaps to care too much about Bulma. Not that he could stop that now. He loved her with a passion that was almost unreal to him. It confused him that he could even feel anything on that level,since he'd been raised to hate, and to kill. His father had told him repeatedly that caring only brought pain. It certainly had this time, but it had also strengthened him and he would be a fool to discard that bit of information. He could admit to himself that she was valuable to him,that she held his heart,but she would never know and neither would anyone else. She would destroy him,if she even knew a fraction of what he felt for her. If he had any hope of achieving his goals, he would take her somewhere safe and leave her, then train until he ascended to the next level. There would be plenty of time to spend together after this was all over. When they ruled the universe together.Yes, that was how it must be. He would go to Hell and get her, then he would leave her to her work and get on with his. It wouldn't be easy,but his pride demanded it of him. He looked to Kakkarot. Kakkarot was just pulling on the last of his armor.
"Where do we meet Bardock?"
"Bulma told us of secret tunnels that ran under the palace here. They open up all over the area. Father has parked the ship in a small alcove and is waiting for us to get to him. He's already met with Toma. He wasn't too happy about climbing the cliffs. I guess they are rather difficult."
"I doubt it. Your father is a weakling."
Kakkarot bit back the angry words that bubbled up to the surface. If it wasn't for his father,Vegeta would still be rotting in the company of Tantris and Frieza,but he refrained from speaking the words. They would only make Vegeta mad . He had a lot on his mind with Bulma and the little news of the beating she had gotten. He would let the words pass for now.
"Are you ready?"
"Of course I'm ready Kakkarot. I'm just waiting on your ass. Let's go." They leaned out the door and surveyed the ship. Both had trained their senses to pick up energy levels. Neither man had liked relying on the unreliable scouters. They looked at each other and Kakkarot shrugged." I don't sense anything."
"Then lets go and keep your own energy level down."
Kakkarot nodded and they streaked down the hall looking for an exit. Kakkarot thought dimly that they were going to have to come back and get the other sorceress they were linked to. Sabrae. She had forged links with both him and Vegeta. They would figure something out later. First step would be to get the hell off this ship and to a safe place where they could plan their next course of action.
Bulma had been laying on the cot trying to rest when she had felt it. It was as if the clamp that had been locked on to her brain had been released. Was that Tantris. Had something happened? She certainly hoped so. The bitch had almost got her killed earlier. She had been working on the pipeline, fixing wires and broken connections. It had been her third day on the job. It was completely intimidating and those words didn't even do it justice. They only kept the fire back as far as they absolutely needed to, about ten feet from where she was. It was hotter then anything she had ever experienced, and you were alotted only three water breaks a day. They gave you a canteen type of bottle and you filled it up each time those three breaks. It was hardly enough for the kind of heat that the planet put out and the amount of sweating one did. Everyone was masked to keep the smoke out of their lungs and no one was allowed to talk.You never saw anyones face. She could have been working next to her parents and wouldn't have known. She had been trying to do the job, trying to ignore the roaring inferno just a few feet away from her. Praying that the repellant they used kept it back, when Tantris had decided to visit.
She had gotten hold of the fear of the fire right away and attempted to use those against her. She'd been able to successfully combat those. Tantris had tried harder. Vegeta was being tortured by Frieza. Horribly so. He'd been dying, his body battered and broken. She had tried to fight it off. She had been successful in that too. She had just kept telling herself over and over that it wasn't real. None of it was real. Then Tantris had started draining her energy. Was that how it felt? Is that how Vegeta had felt, when she had done it to him? She had felt a horrible lethargy. The heat had only compounded the problem. She had just wanted to lay down and die. It was like she had no will to move. She had sunk down onto her knees, unable to go on, had seen the guards approaching, their little electro-stick out for the kill. She hadn't even been able to defend herself. The jolt of electricity they had sent through her had actually rattled her teeth. They had done that repeatedly until she had been at the point of losing conciousness. When that had not garnered the desired results, they had brought out the electro whips. She pressed her fist to her mouth in memory, choking back a sob. The stupid bitch had not let up and they had just kept hitting her with that horrible thing. It had hurt so badly. She had bit her lip, to keep from crying out, not wanting to give them the pleasure. She had eventually passed out. It had burned so badly.
When she had come to she had been laying on her cot, with absolutely no medical treatment at all. She had missed her allotted dining time, not that she had any sort of appetite. She hadn't even been able to get off the bed it had hurt so bad. She could see the marks of the whip, laying across her belly, disappearing as they went behind her back. They were so long they literally curved around your body. She looked the angry red burn marks. She didn't even know if they would leave any permanent scars. The thought that her body would be forever scarred was what pushed her over. She felt the hot rush of tears,she tried but couldn't hold them back any longer. The lump in her throat had grown too painful to hold onto any longer. She felt her body convulse with the force of her sobs, crying for her family, for her life, for her brother. Her face froze in a silent, agonizingly endless fit of tears.Tears for what she was never going to have. She had lost everything there was too lose. Her freedom, her family and the most painful, Vegeta. All she wanted was too have him near her, too feel his warm presence next to her in bed, to hear his voice murmuring sexily into her ear. Free of all cares in the world, but each other. Why did they have to be so responsible. They were young, they should be enjoying their youth and their love for each other. Instead, this was what they got. She swiped at the tears uselessly as more gathered and built. What had she done in life to deserve this? She had been good, had not been another useless entity leeching an existence out of the universe. She had loved Vegeta and to her own belief she had loved him well. She loved him with a depth of emotion she had never reasoned as possible. Her brutalized body cried out for him. Would he even want her now? If she was scarred. Would he till love her or would he look at her in disgust. She realized that really it was a small thing compared to her suffering on this planet and those around her .Beauty was only skin deep, but for her it was the final, pivotal breaking point in her mind. She dwindled off to sweet oblivion, her tears finally spent, but the damage to her soul was complete. She would never be the same girl she'd been before this. Her hope, her idealism, were all washed away with the painful intrusion of reality. This was her reality and there was little hope left in it.
She wasn't sure how long she had slept. She jerked awake to a sharp rapping on her door. It clanged through the small room. All the rooms were made of some kind of light alloy. They were warm to touch, but not horribly so, which had surprised her. Somehow they managed to remain cool in the overwhelming heat of the planet. She rolled off the bed and staggered painfully to her feet. Her back ached with a fury she had never experienced before. She limped to the door,trying to ignore the waves of nausea that washed over . She wasn't sure if it was from the pain or from where she believed she might be pregnant. She was becoming surer with everyday that passed that she was pregnant. Any other time it would have been the most joyous thing she could have ever wished for, but now it was just another depressing reminder of what she'd lost. Not to mention, how in the hell did one bring a life forth in this hellhole. She made it to the door and jerked it open. She looked at the masked figure that stood before her and soon found herself engulfed in a bone-crushing hug. She hissed in pain and tried to jerk away.
"Please let go," She half fainted into the figure's arms. She felt herself swept up into strong arms. Arms she knew, safe arms. Arms that had held her when she'd hurt herself before, arms that had comforted her late at night when she had dreamt badly. She sobbed in relief.
"Daddy." She buried her head in the crook of his neck. He carried her to her bed and laid her gently down, jerking his mask down from his face. She blinked wearily up at him, taking in the sight of her father whom she hadn't seen in over two years.
"Bulma, what have they done to you." His voice was thick with emotion and he quickly wiped his hand over his eyes. He clasped her hand then and held it tightly.
"They felt the need to whip me." She tried to keep the brave front up. She knew how he hated emotional breakdowns, but something in her voice must have reached out to him, for he laid his head down on her arm and sobbed. She could hardly fathom that this was her father. She had never seen him do this. She reached up and stroked his head softly. "It's alright dad. I'll be okay." She heard him snort, then he looked up at her, tears streaming down his face. He made no move to hide them.
"You're the one tha has been whipped by those bastards and you are comforting me? " He caressed her face. "Why Bulma, why did they do this to you?"
She told him haltingly the basics about Tantris and the link. How she had incapacitated her and left her open for the attack. She voiced her fears for her back and then in a small voice she told him about Vegeta. She couldn't tell him she was pregnant. Not yet. She wasn't ready and she wasn't sure how she would even begin to explain to him.
"You love Vegeta?" She nodded. Why deny the truth. Her father would figure it out eventually. She told him about the two years that she had spent on Cusanta, about the fuel. He smiled at her ingenuity.
"You always were an exceptionally bright girl. I can't tell you how proud I am of you." His voice shook again with barely choked back emotion. Of all the things he could have ever hoped for her, life on this planet wasn't it. How could this have happened. It only fortified his resolve to find a way off this godforsaken place. It was responsible for so much pain.
"Bulma, there is something you need to know."
"She looked at him sharply. She heard the strained note in his voice. "It's mom isn't it?"
He nodded and looked away quickly from her face, swallowing hard. After a moment he turned back to her, unshed tears burning brightly in his eyes and told her of how they had been captured by Frieza on Correnia. They had been close to escape. They had warned the population of the imminent take over. He'd been this close to making it off the planet, but Frieza had been too fast for him. They had pressed Britton into military service at the threat of Correnia and the life upon it. Frieza had sent him and her mother to Hell. Her mother had not lasted more then a few weeks of the hellish conditions. She had been too fragile for that type of existence. Bulma felt more tears trail down he face. Her mother had been gone for two years and she hadn't even known it. This was all her fault. If she had stayed out of the Saiyajins business, none of this would have happened.
"It's my fault you know. If I hadn't shown them all of my designs." Still she couldn't regret Vegeta.
"Did you tell Frieza girl? Hell, were you the one that even set up the damn meetings in the first place? You were only doing what I wished. No, none of this is your fault or even that Prince you claim to love. All of this can be laid at King Vegeta's feet and if I live long enough, I will see him dead by my hand for all he has wrought. You tried to warn me, and I cast your warnings aside as if they were the meaningless fears of a young girl." He looked down at his hands which he had clenched tightly together in his lap.
"You can't kill King Vegeta dad, he's already dead." She said the words tonelessly, not sure how to really express the horror of seeing a whole planet wiped out of existence.
"Frieza destroyed Vegittasei. Blew it from the sky."
He leaned back in shock.
"Vegittasei is gone?"
She nodded. "He did it right after he took me off of the planet. He took Vegeta and Kakkarot and Toma and then blew it up. "
"My God. How did I ever think I could defeat him."
"You can dad. We all can if we work together. We just have to find a way. I refuse to believe that he is undefeatable" She shifted on the bed and winced. Her back was on fire. Her father smoothed her hair from her brow.
"Sit tight , Bulma. There's someone in the medic department that I can get some cream from. It will take care of your pain, and I believe help reduce scarring considerably. I'll have your brother get it and bring it to you. He wanted to see you."
"Is he alright?"
"He's doing as well as he can."
"Did he tell you what happened? What Frieza did to him." Her father lowered his head and nodded.
"Yes, he told me. Do you happen to know what it is that they put in him? He gave me a vague description, but I could tell he was keeping most of the details to himself. I think he was trying to protect me." He chuckled joylessly.
"No, he was pretty closed mouthed with me too, but Tantris, the sorceress, showed me what it will do to him. I don't doubt that she was telling me the truth. It will be slow and agonizing. He'll suffer."
Brennon sat back and closed his eyes. How had it all come to this? His son and heir now infected by some horrible disease only Frieza could dream up, his beautiful daughter lay in a bed trying to recover from a severe beating and they were all trapped on this godforsaken planet with little or no hope for the future. Was this the price he was destined to pay for trying to free the universe of Frieza. He was like a black plague set upon the universe, killing all and anything that was good and hopeful and leaving hopeless despair in his wake. He looked at his daughter. She lay on her bed quietly. The look she wore, it was so much more then physical pain. It was a sad despair he had hoped to never see on any of his children's faces, yet there it sat on her young face. He got up and turned away, unable to look at it anymore. For her, for Britton he had to figure a way off this planet.
"Rest now Bulma. I'll send Britton by in awhile with that cream. I'll be back tomorrow," He bent and kissed her forehead. "Stay my brave girl." Girl. That was laughable. She was entirely a woman now, her maturity forged by pain, loss and suffering on levels he had never even dreamt possible. He wondered how she would feel if she knew the truth about her origins. Was it her destiny to fight Frieza? She owed Frieza a thousand times over and she didn't even realize it. Could he tell her? He didn't think so, at least he couldn't tell her and preserve his relationship with her. She would see it as a betrayal and maybe she was right. It had been selfishness that had kept his mouth silent before. He owed the people that had brought this girl into the world to at least mention of their existence, but not today. He would let her heal first, then he would tell her when the time was right, if such a time existed. He turned and left.
Bulma lay quietly on her small bed,her hands clasped tightly together on her lap, tears streaming silently down her face. She'd been grateful to see her father, to know that he was alive. Her mother. Her beautiful mother was dead. She choked back a sob. What had she ever done to deserve that? She had been a good woman, a pure-hearted one. Now she was gone. Her life snuffed out well before it should have been and her brother. Her brother was dying to. She knew that. It might be a slow process, but it was happening. She wrapped her arms around herself, her slim body shook silently with the force of her sobs. She just wanted Vegeta. She needed the wordless comfort he could bring her, but he wasn't here and somehow she was going to have to find a way to go on. She closed her eyes and attempted to relax. She would do what her father had said and try to rest. Maybe things would be a bit better after that.
Vegeta shot up from his chair,sweat dripping down his face. He'd been dreaming of Frieza. He closed his eyes and pressed his head into his hands. No he couldn't let this happen. The images were gone. It wasn't real. He had never done anything like that and he never would. He stood up and walked down the ramp to the ground below. He took in the cool ocean air, breathed it in deeply to clear his mind. What he wouldn't give to have Bulma wrapped around him now, taking his mind off of everything but her and the feelings she induced in him. The mindless haze of pleasure and need would be a welcome distraction from his world right now. He glanced at the horizon. Kakkarot should be meeting with the other sorceress anytime. They had devised a plan to lure her to a place of their choosing and then kill her. He'd wanted to be the one to do it, but Kakkarot had insisted that this one was his, that he owed this one for his own honor. So he and Toma had waited behind to prepare the ship for their takeoff while Kakkarot and Bardock went to deal with Sabrae. He had hated doing it. His pride demanded that he be the one that killed the other sorceress, but Kakkarot had earned the right to and he found he could not deny the man the satisfaction of finishing it with his own two hands. Once that was done then it was over, and they could be off this planet and away from Frieza. He knew Frieza would be looking for them. They had anticipated that he would send men with Sabrae when she found Kakkarot. It had been a well crafted plan that they had thought out, and they had tried to anticipate every move Frieza might make. It all hinged on whether or not she believed she had truly found Kakkarot through the link or if she suspected Kakkarot had only allowed her to. She had so far not attempted to put a drain on Kakkarot, which had surprised him a bit. Perhaps the sorceresses enjoyed the challenge of the hunt. He smirked. That would make them a bit like Saiyajins now wouldn't it. Something primal that he could understand.
He looked back up at the ship. Toma had it as ready to go as it could possibly be. Once Kakkarot returned, then they could get on with it and get to Hell to find Bulma. He would be able to relax a bit once he knew that she was alright, once he could touch her. He had thought briefly that he had heard her voice calling for him, but he had soon realized that it was only an illusion or his own wishful thinking. Once she was safe he could turn his full attention to training to ascend to the level he needed to reach. It was the only way he could ever defeat Frieza. He sighed loudly, watching the mist roll in off the sea. Soon. It had to happen soon, before he went insane with the waiting. Every day that Frieza continued to breathe was like a shot in his soul. He was going to be eaten alive with his anger and his hatred of Frieza if he couldn't kill him soon. Bulma had been the one good thing he had and Frieza had even deprived him of that, of the one thing that could soothe him. He felt years older then his twenty-one years and Bulma, she was younger then he was. Kakkarot was barely a man, yet here they all were, being forced into positions none of them were particularly ready for. He had mated with Bulma, taken her for life, yet they had only been allowed one short night together. He felt himself begin to relive that night, to the nearly overwhelming longing he had felt to claim that body...he shook his head, enough thought. He could not keep on like this. Agonizing over what might have been and what should have been. One way or another, no matter the cost, he would destroy Frieza. If the cost was his soul then so be it, he would sacrifice it willingly for that. Would she let you? Bulma, it always came back to Bulma. He couldn't let her interefere with this. This was something that had to be done. She would have to accept it.
Kakkarot waited in the darkened passageway that ran underneath the palace. He and his father had found a small alcove to hide in that would allow for easy escape once they had destroyed Sabrae. He could make out his father in the inky blackness, clutching at the transmitter he had brought with him. The transmitter that would send the word to Toma about their escape. That transmitter had been a lifesaver for all of them. It was at times like this that Kakkarot was grateful for having a father that was brilliant. He could easily make out the interior of the cave, his superior Saiyajin eyes picking out each individual detail of the darkened trail. She should be coming anytime. He forcefully pushed all thoughts out of his brain. His mind must be at peace and quiet if he had any hopes of surprising her. He and Vegeta had counted on her having Frieza's forces with her. Frieza would be searching like a mad animal for them, furious that they had killed his most precious sorceress. He would see it as a direct slap in his face. Let him. Kakkarot pretty much lived and breathed for the day that Frieza's life would be snuffed out. He wanted to stick it to Frieza as much as possible before that deed was accomplished. He took in a deep, steadying breath and shut his eyes. She was coming. He could sense her on the fringes of his mind. He looked at his father and nodded, then pushed every lingering thought out. He had kept his energy level low. He just needed to do it for a moment. Long enough to jump her. It would only take a moment to kill her. She was closer now. He fought back the urge to panic. He remembered easily how she had worked his mind over. He could not let that happen again. He wished he could be more like Vegeta. Vegeta was able to do what had to be done, with out any reservations. Another quick gulp for air, it would be upon him soon. He felt his father's hand descend on his shoulder. A comforting presence. The strong hand clenched his shoulder for the briefest moment ,then released and Kakkarot saw Sabrae had entered his line of sight. She must know he was here. She could sense him as well, he could feel her begin the probing of his mind, but he resisted. He only needed to resist for a moment. If he could last just a few minutes, she would be dead and the link would be broken.
He clenched his jaw with the effort of keeping her out. She was a strong one. Kakkarot, I know you're here, why don't you come out and play? She spoke to him teasingly, as if she was trying to lure out a child. He said nothing back to her, couldn't actually, it was taking all his energy just to resist her pull and her images. Soon she would probably begin draining him. He had to make his move. It would be now or never. He lauched out at her like a shot, fast and furious taking her down to the ground in a single blow. They somersaulted over one another, both leaping to there feet and facing down the other.
"Oh, come now, do you really want to do this? I thought we had enjoyed each other?"
"Hardly," he spat.
"Kakkarot, really what chance do you think you'll have? I am much stronger then you are? I can take you so easily. Your mind is already mine, your body is well on its way. You can't resist me for long."
Kakkarot didn't answer, he shot a blast at her that had her leaping away from her spot. She leapt directly in front of the alcove that his father waited in. She never saw him coming as he wrapped his arms around her body. Kakkarot smiled. "Yu're nothing without that link are you?" He walked over to her. "Normally I wouldn't resort to such a cowardly way of fighting. I mean its hardly fair. However." His head jerked up as he heard the tell-tell sounds of Frieza's men coming down the stone path. "I guess we'll have to cut our little session short today, won't we. " His fist connected with her stomach, doubling her over. He cringed inwardly at delivering a blow like that to a woman. Yet she wasn't quite a woman now was she. She was something evil and nightmarish. Bardock released her as she fell to all fours on the ground. Kakkarot could feel her attempting to control the link. He opened his mind to her freely, allowing her to see all the hellish things he wanted to do to her. She looked up at him, a twisted grin on her face. Her eyes widened as she saw the ki blast that he had formed in his hand. He stared straight at her as he released it directly at her. She collapsed to the ground in a haze of smoke. Kakkarot could feel the link beginning to wane.
"She's not quite dead." His father looked at him.
"Then let me rectify that." He released blast upon blast, designed not only to finish the sorceress off but to disguise their exit from the troups that he could see beginning to enter the part of the path they were at. He could hear their scouters beeping wildly, and he knew they would have to mask their damn energies once they escaped from this. Kakkarot could felt the link disappear completely as she drew her last breath. All around him, there was smoke and flashes of light. He could see his father and he ran to him, grabbing his arm.
"That's good enough, lets get out of here. "They ran down the pathway twisting and turning with each different path they had chosen to take. They burst out onto the beach running madly. Bardock skidded to a halt.
"Let me tell Toma to fire that damn ship up." He made his call while Kakkarot watched anxiously for the troops. The smokescreen must have worked, not to mention that with out the link that Sabrae provided, the troops would be hard pressed to know which way they had taken in their flight. Kakkarot smiled. They were going to do this. They were going to get away from Frieza. He listened to his father tell Toma they were coming and then the two of them ran madly across the sandy beach. They could hear the roar of the spaceship's engines come to life as they ran. They were so incredibly close, just a little further. Kakkarot glanced back once and saw some of Frieza's troops spilling out of another exit, an exit much higher up then they had used. He smiled. They were going to make. As they turned the corner they saw it. It's thrusters blazed with fire. It was ready to go. Vegeta stood on the ramp up waiting for them. They ran up the ramp, Kakkrot hitting the ramp retract button as he flew through the doorway. Bardock went up to the cockpit to aid Toma and Vegeta and Kakkarot strapped themselves in as the ship blasted into outerspace leaving Frieza behind.
Vegeta leaned back in his chair and relaxed. They had done it. He tried not to let his relief show on his face. He didn't want Kakkarot to think that he had ever had any doubt as to their escape. His dark eyes swept over Kakkarot's face. Kakkarot found it hard to read what was in those eyes. Vegeta was the master of keeping himself closed off to anyone and everyone. It made him nervous sometimes. One never knew if Vegeta was going to kill you or not. He had become much more unpredictable with each encounter of Frieza. The young man that Kakkarot had guarded and served time with had changed without him and morphed into an extremely hardened, mature man. He had only seen the soft side with Bulma in recent times and he wondered if Vegeta would inevitably be able to shut those feelings off as well. He voiced the question that was at the forefront of his mind.
Vegeta stared at him for a moment before answering, then calmly said, "We're going to Hell."
Kakkarot smiled "Good, I hate the thought of Bulma suffering needlessly."
"Did you think that I would allow her to stay there Kakkarot, to rot on that fucking planet?"
"No, I...I wasn't sure what you wanted to do."
Vegeta stared at him icily. First he tries to lay claim to his mate, then he suggests that he would leave her to her own devices on a miserable planet of death. Kakkarot was begging for a beating and Vegeta would gladly oblige. He would love to thrash the insolent edge right out of him. He was the Prince now after all. No he guessed he was the King. Kakkarot needed to be reminded of that.
"Rest assured Kakkarot, Bulma will be rescued, then I will deal with Frieza." Then you he thought silently.
Kakkarot was beginning to get a uncomfortable under the weight of Vegeta's cool stare. He had upset him again, yet wasn't sure how. Anymore all you had to do was look at him wrong and he would fly off into a rage. Maybe Bulma would be what was needed to soothe him. He fervently hoped so. He stood up.
"I'm going to go speak to my father and Toma." He hastily beat his retreat to the cockpit leaving Vegeta alone with his thoughts.
Vegeta lay back in the chair. It had been a little over a month since Vegittasei had been destroyed. A month since he'd last seen Bulma. "Soon, woman..soon you'll be safe." He whispered the words to himself. Once he had seen her safe, then he could concentrate on killing Frieza.
It had been exactly one month since the bastards had whipped her. Her father had been true to his word. He had gotten her the cream to use on her back and he'd been right. It had taken the edge out of her pain and enable her to maneuver around. She bent over the pipeline she had been laboring tirelessly over for the past two hours, sweat falling into her eyes and stinging them. She brushed impatiently at it. The good thing about that cream was that it had helped ease her scarring. There would always be marks, but they were light and almost unnoticeable which was a far cry better then the alternative. She hammered angrily at the connectors on the pipeline. As each pipe fit together, they had an electronic connector that read the amounts of fuel and speed of flow. This one was refusing to read at all. She glanced around, this thing was impossible. It probably need to have a new connector made up for it, which meant she'd be wiring out here until morning. Dammit. She hit it again and winced as a pain shot though her abdomen. She rubbed her belly gently. There was no question now, she was pregnant. Just about two months gone. Unmistakeably so and evidently even at this early juncture of the pregnancy, the little guy had his father's strength. She just knew it was a boy. She wasn't sure how she knew, but she did. She smiled. She had told no one yet, but knew she'd have to tell her father soon. Question was how? Then she was going to have to get the hell off this planet. She felt a strange surge in the air and looked up. The fires were burning so brightly it was almost painful to look at them. She was surrounded by smoke, but thankfully breathed none in due to her airmask. There was something odd in the air, something she could feel, yet wasn't able to put a name to. It made her a bit jittery. So far there hadn't been any accidents where she worked and she was profoundly grateful for that. The whole thought of being burned alive was enough to send her into a panic. She had been grateful that there had been no more visits from Tantris. Her mind had remained peacefully free of the nightmarish woman's images and voice. Either she was dead or she had moved onto bigger game. Bulma hoped she was dead. She wanted Vegeta to be free of her too. She prayed he was alright. She had dreamt about him nightly. Some were so real that she could have sworn he was there with her. Her need for him hadn't lessened any at all, and some days were worse then others, but she was able to carry on without him. The true ache of missing him didn't really hit her until night,when she was alone.Then she felt every moment of their seperation. The need to lay next to him, to talk to him, to even just share a peaceful moment with him almost always overwhelmed her at night. She saw a guard approaching her and jerked her head back down to continue on the connector. She hadn't received another beating since that day a month earlier. They had watched her closely too. Bulma had seen them looking for reasons to punish her. She had been very careful to give them none what so ever. She looked up again as she felt another strong surge in the fire. What in the hell was going on?
Toma could see the burning flames of the Planet Hell from the viewscreen window. They had finally made it. It had only taken them one long month. The planet looked like a sun, the way the flames were leaping off of it. It amazed him that Frieza had found a way to populate the planet. He looked over at Kakkarot. They had no way of knowing whether Bulma was even alive, though if Toma had to take bets he would have bet on her strength hands down. She was a strong willed girl. She'd have found a way to make it.
"Well, I guess we're here. Did we ever decide on how we were going to do this? " He looked expectantly at Kakkarot.
"No. I don't think we ever really agreed to any one way. As far as I know Vegeta just plans on going in and bullying his way right to her."
Toma rolled his eyes. "Crazy fool. He's going to get himself killed."
"Well, I'm going to go back there and see if I can at least get him to give us all a job or place to be."
Toma watched him go then turned back to the screen and the view of the planet. His eyes narrowed as he took in a huge black spot that was surging across the planet's surface. What was that? He punched into the planetary system display on the computer and searched for Hell. He waited impatiently for the information about the planet to come up on his screen. He began to read about the planet and it's surface, his eyes widened as he read and his head jerked up to stare at the black spot that glided over the planet. God no. He turned and rushed out of the cockpit. They had to move now.
Vegeta felt his face contort with horror as Toma described what he had seen on the planet and read on the computer.
"A firestorm?" He had heard of them, but never paid much attention to them.
Toma nodded his head. "They sweep through occasionally and not much can keep them back. I'm sure they have shelters for the prisoners to go. I mean it would hardly pay to have your slaves killed off. Still, it puts a serious knot in our rescue Bulma plan."
"We go now. I refuse to wait and leave her safety to the guards that run the place. For all we know they have no problem with letting them die. "
"We won't have much time. We'll have to find her quickly. "
"That won't be a problem. I can sense her ki easily."
"Alright, I'll prepare to land, but how in the hell are we going to get past any guards they have stationed at the landing bay?"
"We'll kill them. That's not that difficult Toma." Vegeta couldn't understand why they had to make everything so damned impossible. You went in, took what you wanted and left. End of story. Were these men Saiyajins or weaklings?
"Are you sure there is enough of us to do the job?"
Vegeta rolled his eyes. "Toma, I could destroy this planet if I saw fit to. Blasting a few guards isn't going to be a difficulty." He would never understand these third class losers.
"Alright, I'll go ahead and put the ship down. There is only one coordinate that will lead us straight to the docking bay." He ran back up to the front of the ship to make contact. He figured he would just tell them that he had been sent by Frieza with a shipload of new prisoners. He hoped they would buy it.
Bulma had been dismissed for the day. She had hurried to her father's small room, but he had not been there. A quick check told her, her brother was still out as well. She wasn't sure why she felt the way she did, but she just knew that something was going on. She made it back to her own small room and sat down. She'd wait awhile longer and then she'd try again.
They had bought it. They had been surprised but they had accepted that it had been a last minute decision on Frieza's part to send a group of people to serve time on Hell. He had the coordinates he needed and was just about to set the ship down. The huge firestorm was moving over an even wider part of the planet. He wasn't sure where Bulma was. He hoped she wasn't too near the firestorm already. They needed some time to get to her. He saw the opening in the huge enclosure that housed the spaceship dock. He brought the ship down and even over the noise of his own engines he could hear them closing the opening. It made a horrible grating noise and as he began the shut down of the engines, he heard the metallic clang as they banged together. Well he supposed that would protect the ship at least in case of a worst case scenario. He hurried to the back and saw the others ready to go.
"They accepted the story I gave them, or at least they seem to. They should be arriving anytime to gather the prisoners I have brought in. Do we give them one?"
Vegeta looked thoughtful. "That's not a bad idea. Why don't you give them Kakkarot, while Bardock and I go find Bulma."
Kakkarot looked taken aback. "You're not going to let them keep me are you?" He looked legitamately concerned.
Vegeta smirked. "It depends on how well you listen to what I tell you."
Kakkarot stared with some concern at the men standing around him. Were they serious? Finally Toma slapped him on the back. "Sometimes Kakkarot you scare me."
Bardock laughed too. "Don't worry boy,we aren't going to give you up for any long period of time. Just enough time to reign mass confusion, get Bulma and get the hell off the planet. "
"Alright." He looked warily at Vegeta. He wasn't too sure Vegeta hadn't already contemplated leaving him. Vegeta caught the look and snorted. Kakkarot could be so foolish sometimes.
"I doubt they will go for it for too long," Bardock put in. "We have no official papers, no proof of who we are. You two will have to make it up as you go along."
"You know there is another small bit of information that you two are overlooking." Kakkarot had been concerned about this for awhile.
"What's that Kakkarot," Vegeta grunted,beginning to get impatient.
"Bulma is not likely to want to leave her parents or her brother behind."
Vegeta nodded. "I'd already thought of that. I'll take care of it. You needn't worry." Truth be told, he had forgotten all about the rest of her family, and dammit, Kakkarot was right. The stubborn woman would definitely not want to leave them behind. Emotions could really hold you back sometimes. He would just have to make it up as he went along. The first step would be to make it to where Bulma was at.
"Alright, are we through with this incessant chatter? I'm ready to get off this planet." Vegeta wanted to waste no more time. He wanted his woman and he wanted her now. He was already looking forward to an evening in bed with her. He'd be content to just hold her. He smirked. Wouldn't she be surprised when she saw him.
"Okay, let's go." Bardock opened the door and lowered the ramp. He and Vegeta stayed back as Toma pushed Kakkarot down. They watched from the shadows as the guards met the twosome at the bottom and listened to the argument that ensued. Vegeta stretched out a bit and attempted to find Bulma's ki. He could pick up a vague sense of it, but it was dampened quite a bit. He hoped she was alright. After what seemed to amount to hours, but really only lasted a minute, the guards pushed Toma and Kakkarot into some kind of security building. Vegeta and Bardock flew down the ramp, pausing briefly to make sure there was no one to see them. The place was deserted. They were obviously not expecting company today. Vegeta and Bardock flew to another building that apparently housed an exit to the pipelines and prison systems laced throughout the planet. Vegeta banged the door open,ignoring the startled looks of the prisoners around him. Bardock shook his head. The boy was going to get them all killed. He saw guards approaching them from their left side. He had no choice. He fired a ki blast and took out one. Vegeta caught the other one directly in the chest. They continued on, Vegeta leading them straight to her using her ki signature. Behind them Bardock could hear alarms being sounded. Well, this was going to get interesting in a big hurry.
Vegeta couldn't believe how hot it was. His battle suit was already soaked with sweat and the smoke was unbearable. He grimaced. How had Bulma managed to tolerate it this long? He landed before a small cluster of cubicles, hacking as he did so. He felt like he was going to lose a lung. She must be in one of these.Vegeta felt his heart speed up at a bit at the thought of seeing her. He concentrated again and felt her ki much stronger this time. Perhaps all the fires dampened the ki signatures. He coughed as the smoke began to fill his lungs again.. They needed to get out of the smoke. He tried to narrow down her location and managed to trace her to a small cubicle on the end. He looked at the small make-shift building. It was made of metal. He felt a surge of fire, practically sweep down his back. He could feel the winds picking up. They needed to get out of here.
Bulma was sitting on her small bed, holding her mask. She needed to go and try to find her father. She had heard the winds pick up outside her room. She had just stood up to fasten her mask when the door flew off it hinges. She screamed in terror and jumped back onto her bed. Was this one of the guards come to beat her again? She saw a wave of smoke roll in and with it she saw Vegeta and Bardock. She shook her head. This must be some kind of illusion brought on by too much smoke. She looked again. Vegeta stood there staring at her, taking in every detail of her face. She smiled lightly, unsure how to take this unexpected developement. He took one step towards her, then another until he could look up at her on the bed.
"Well woman, are you just going to stand there all day and look at me or are you going to show me the proper appreciation for coming to save your ass?"
She narrowed her eyes at him, why must he always be an ass? She collapsed into a fit of coughing as smoke continued to billow in. She could hear the wind shrieking. Good God, now wasn't the time to get mad at him for his behavior. She should just be thrilled he had come to take her off the damn planet. She smiled then, a smile full of hope . The first real smile she had shed for over a month. She threw herself in his arms and hugged him tightly. She felt him nuzzle her neck. "Woman," he said huskily. She had come to love the sound of that name on his lips. "We have to get out of here. There's a firestorm coming." He pulled back to look into her blue eyes.
"A firestorm?" She pulled away from him and went to pull the door up from the floor where it had landed. She propped it against the now gaping hole that had been her doorway. She was glad the door was light. At least this would keep some of the smoke out until they left.
"Yes,"said Bardock and it'll overpower the repellants they have. You aren't safe here."
"What about my father and brother?"
"Are they far from here?"
"No, just around the pipeline a ways."
"Isn't your mother with them?"
"No,"she looked down,"my mother didn't survive it here."
Vegeta nodded grimly. "Alright. I'll go and retrieve your father and brother. Bardock, I am trusting you to get her back to the ship in one piece." He grabbed her mask and jerked it on her, pausing a moment to kiss her softly. "I'm the only one who knows your father and brother's ki signatures."
"Please be careful, Vegeta."
"Don't worry so, woman. I'll be along in a minute." He threw the door out of his way again and swooped out, disappearing in a cloud of smoke, trying to ignore the burgeoning feeling that he was making a huge mistake.
"Come on girl, the fire is raging closer now. The storm must be almost on us." Bardock gathered her in his arms and took a lungful of clean air, then shot out the door towards the docking station.
Kakkarot and Toma stood back to back, completely surrounded. It had taken the guards about ten minutes to ascertain that they weren't who they claimed to be. Toma looked at Kakkarot and Kakkarot looked back at him, swet dripping off of both them.
"Well, boy I guess there is only one way to handle this." Kakkarot nodded in return. Toma lifted his hand and shot ki blast after ki blast at the guards that surrounded them. He could hear Kakkarot do the same. They kept it up for a minute until all that could be seen were smoking bodies. "Come on, lets get outside and see if they need any help. I heard alarms going off."
Kakkarot followed him and was unprepared for the sight that greeted him. The planet was absolutely everything people claimed it to be. He had never seen such a raging inferno and the winds were incredible. He could barely breathe for the smoke that filled the air.
"It's the storm. It's blowing these fires over their blockades. Apparently I was wrong, they don't seem too concernned with saving their prisoners lives." He pointed to a huddle of people working on the pipeline."The storm is almost upon them. Come on lets get back in and get the ship ready."
Vegeta was having serious reservations about leaving Bulma in Bardock's care. Not that he didn't think the older Saiyajin couldn't be trusted, but he just didn't trust anyone else taking care of her. Not that he had any options. Kakkarot was right. She would never leave without her family and it was easier to just take them along rather then argue the point with her. She was a damn stubborn woman. He located her father and brother quickly enough and swooped down to where they were. There were many people with them and all were working on the pipeline. He went right to them, though they had masks on. Vegeta was wishing for his own mask right about now. His lungs ached terribly from trying to hold deep breaths of air. He looked at a guard and fired a ki blast at him. He ignored the flock of people that surged towards him as he grabbed the mask off the dead guards face and put it on. The shot had attracted other guards. He promptly shot ki blasts at them and then turned towards the two men he had come to get.
"Prince Vegeta?" Britton could barely believe it.
"Yes, now come on, I've come to get you two. Let's go." He noticed more guards coming. He didn't particularly want to be stuck here fighting off these stupid lizards all day. The wind was about to topple them all over and even now he could see the flames begiining to rage closer.
"What about Bulma?" Vegeta couldn't believe he'd even have to ask. As if he would have come here to save them and not her. "I've already gotten her. She was first on my list."
Brennon understood what the Prince had not said. The only reason he was here, was because Bulma had insisted. Well he was still an arrogant ass but at least he loved his daughter. Why else would he risk his skin this way to fetch her family.
"Alright, lets go." Vegeta grabbed each man by the scruff of their shirts and blasted into the air. He wanted to get out of here now.
Bardock coouldn't believe his luck. The docking bay was just ahead of him. They were mere feet from it, yet it might as well have been miles. Every guard that served on this planet, must be standing in front of it. Attracted by the alarms that were still ringing throughout the area. He could only take out so many. He lowered himself to the ground. He stood on an unfinished section of pipeline. The huge pipe was open and unfinished, a gaping hole in it's side. He pushed Bulma behind him. "Stay back. Let me take care of this." He turned back to the guards and made a mad dash towards, firing as many rapid ki blat s as he could muster, he stopped for a moment and breathed heavily. His lungs ached from the smoke that he had inhaled.He doubted he would live much longer if he didin't get some clean air soon.
Vegeta had made it back to the docking bay in one piece. He had come in a diferent direction then he had left and to his amazement all the guards were occupied with someone else. Perhaps Kakkarot had taken it upon himself to create a diversion. He dropped the men outside the ship and turned back towards the exit building. To his horror he saw Kakkarot and Toma standing to the side of it. If they were in here, then that meant. Bulma. Bardock had been ambushed and left to his own devices outside. Damn Kakkarot.
"Kakkarot you idiot." He yelled as he ran." Your father is out there trying to get in with my mate. Get out there and help him. "He burst through the doors not bothering to open them. He had to help Bardock or they wouldn't get in. They had no time. That storm had been licking at his backside all the way back.
Bardock was preparing to blast some more guards straight to hell. At least that had been the plan. He heard it, before he felt it. He saw the horrified looks on the guard's ugly faces as they saw their death approaching, heard Bulma screaming at him. He turned slowly around. At least it seemed slow to him. The firestorm had reached them. All he could see was a huge wall of fire and it was coming rapidly. They had about ten seconds to make their decision.
"Bardock, down here, the pipe. We can fit in it." She yelled over the roar of the oncoming flames. Bardock looked down and realized she was right. It was their only hope. He grabbed her hand and jumped just as the flames reached them. He could feel it singing his hair,his skin and even his clothes. They threw themselves down into the gaping hole in the pipe, hitting hard, both sinking into a black oblivion as they hit. Maybe it was better this way he thought dimly. That way we won't feel our death.
Vegeta watched in agonized horror as the wall of fire swept up to where Bardock stood. He couldn't see Bulma, but he supposed she was right there by him. Dammit he should have taken her himself.he had known better, and ignored himself. He tried to jerk the door off its hinges. He had time, he could get to her before the fire did.
Kakkarot watched as his father fought for his life outside the docking bay. He should have waited longer. He and Toma had gone back in thinking they should ready the ship. They had not wanted to garner any unwanted attention outside. How stupid a decision was that. He saw the fire sweeping down on his father. He wasn't going to make it. He saw Vegeta trying to open the door, to go out and help. He managed to grab him around the neck, locking him in a stranglehold. "Dammit Vegeta, there's not time. You won't make it. "
"Let me go, you bastard. I have to get Bulma." He watched as the fire swept right up to the place that Bardock had stood. It had enveloped the spot. He roared in agony.
"Vegeta, you can't get her.It's too late. You can't die too. We need you to defeat Frieza." He wasn't sure why he was doing this, he just knew that they couldn't lose Vegeta. If he died then they had lost all hope and Bulma's death and his father's death would be in vain. Vegeta struggled like a madman against him as the fire completely engulfed where Bardock had stood and continue its rush towards the now scattering guards.. He heard himself scream in agony. Kakkarot knew that he was going to live to regret this for the rest of his life, but he knew he had no options either. His father was dead and so was Bulma and Vegeta could not die.Kakkarot could not allow that. He chopped the Saiyajin Prince in the side of the neck, rendering him unconcious. He turned to Toma who looked on in mute horror as his best friend was engulfed by the flames. "Come on Toma, we have to go. We'll die here too if we don't."
Toma looked at the Prince that was slung over Kakkarot's shoulder. "He's going to kill you when he comes to. You do realize that don't you."
Kakkarot nodded mutely. "What else was I supposed to do Toma, let him die too. He is my Prince. I was sworn to protect him. He couldn't have helped her." He felt the tears running down his face. Tears for Bulma and his father.
"Alright let's get out of here. I suppose there is no way they could have survived that. Toma ignored his own tears as they ran back up to the ship. He saw her brother and father standing at the base of the ramp.
"Where's Bulma?" Brennon asked anxiously.
Toma stopped for a moment. "She didn't make it. I'm sorry." He saw the look of denial that crossed the man's face. He pushed him up the ramp. The guards that were left were coming.
"He told us, he'd already gotten her." Britton yelled at Kakkarot. He turned to run. He had to find his little sister. Toma strong arm stopped him. "I saw it with my own eyes, boy. Your sister didn't make it." Britton stared hard at the man, then nodded painfully. "I guess I'll have to take your word for it. I'd better go be with my father." He trudged slowly up the ramp, unsure of how to deal with this latest blow. He wanted to cry, but he wasn't sure if he had it in him.
Toma and Kakkarot brushed past him, closing the doors as they entered. Kakkarot laid Vegeta in a chair, then raced up to the cockpit to help Toma depart. He paused a moment as he looked out at the docking bay platform. His father. He had lost his father. He choked back a sob. there would be time for that later. He almost laughed. He'd be lucky to have a later. Vegeta would undoubtedly kill him when he woke up. Maybe Kakkarot would welcome that. He was tired of fighting and of running and of loss. He wanted to live a quiet existence. This was becoming too hard. He sat down and began the sequencing code for the departure.
Brennon sat slumped over the small table, shoulders shaking. He had truly lost everything. His son was dying, his daughter was dead. His wife, his planet. What the hell else did he have to live for. He felt his son sit beside him and lay a comforting hand on his shoulder. He said nothing. There was really nothing to say. Britton knew that words could not really do the situation justice. He looked coldly at the Saiyajin Prince. He had assured them that Bulma had already been taken care of. This was his fault and he'd see him pay for it.
Vegeta came awake with the nagging image of something painful lurking in the furthest recesses of his mind. Something he knew he did not want to recall, yet it was already rushing upon him with the force of a galactic steamer. He swallowed and pulled his head up off the table. What had happened? He took in the sight of the ship and furrowed his brow. Dimly he noticed a sobbing man across from him. It rushed back to him in a furious torrent of unwanted images. She was gone.He staggered upwards, then doubled over in silent agony and staggered to the back of the ship. No she wasn't dead, not her, it wasn't supposed to be her.
Britton saw the Prince awake and watched the play of emotions cross his face. Good he hoped it hurt like hell. It was because of him that his sister was dead.
"Is that pain you feel Prince? I didn't think that you could feel the higher emotions? I thought the only emotion you could feel was hate." He stood up. He had never been the type of person to kick a man while he was down, but Britton was beyond that now. Everything in his life had been lost including his very own peace of mind. That shot had ensured that he would have a horrifying end and the only thing he could do was wait for it to happen. He could lay all the trials and tribulations of his family on the Saiyajin doorstep. Maybe not this one in particular,but since he was the one closest to the situation, then he was going to be the one that received the abuse. "You told us she was taken care of and you lied. Damn you, my sister is dead because of you now." Britton would have said more but his father's harsh voice cut through the air.
"Britton that is enough. Your sister's life was the price for yours. The Prince had no more to do with that, than you did."
"What do you mean? " He narrowed his eyes at the Prince, who stood alone in the corner looking down.
"Your sister wouldn't leave this planet without you or I. The Prince knew that and was the only one who could have tracked us down. I have no doubt that if he had taken care of Bulma himself, she'd be sitting here right now. "
"That's right and look what her life was sacrificed for. An old man and a dying boy." He spit the words out, furious that they lived while she lay dead. He turned away. He was unsure who he was angrier at, himself, them or Kakkarot. The dawning realization that Kakkarot had held him back from helping her, hit him like a ton of bricks.
"KAKKAROT!!" He screamed out the name, rage pumping through his veins. He had actually knocked him out. A third class nothing had seen fit to deny him his own woman, then had the audacity to knock him out like a coward. He felt new outrage replace the old, pumping him full of raw, unbridled fury.
Toma looked at Kakkarot. "It looks like the beast has awakened." Toma set the auto pilot, then calmly made his way back to the main hanger. The sight of Vegeta chilled him to the bones. He had never seen this kind of anger on his face before. Kakkarot was going to die if he didn't do some kind of maneuvering. He felt Kakkarot come up behind him.
"Vegeta." Kakkarot spoke quietly.
"Damn you Kakkarot. Do you have any idea what you cost me today? You bastard. I will kill you for what you have done to me this day." He prepared to charge at him. To unleash the pounding fury in his veins. Toma stepped in front of Kakkarot quickly.
"Vegeta, killing this boy isn't going to bring her back."
"Maybe not, but its going to help me forget what he did."
"Kakkarot is second in strength only to you. Do you really want to throw that away because he saved your life?"
"Saved my life? He denied Bulma her life. "
"Could you have reached her in time Vegeta? Kakkarot was doing his duty to his Prince. He shouldn't have to die for that. You need Kakkarot to bring down Frieza. He's the one to blame for all of this."
"I can take Frieza on my own. I don't need Kakkarot's help for that."
"Is that why Frieza is still alive.Up to now you haven't seemed able to take care of business with him." Toma knew he was crossing a line of no return, but he couldn't let Vegeta kill Kakkarot. It was too much like losing Bardock again.
Vegeta hissed in his breath. How dare he speak like that to him. It was true though. As much as he was loathe to admit it, he would need Kakkarot for that. After that, though , he could kill the bastard.
He moved so quickly no one saw him until he had reached his goal. He grabbed Kakkarot by his armor and held him. "Fine Kakkarot. You can live for now, but rest assured, after I have destroyed Frieza, I will come for you and you will die by my hands." He shoved the younger man away and turned in disgust, stalking off to the farthest corner of the ship. He wanted nothing more then to lay his head down and cry like a baby. SO this is where emotions got you. The pain he was feeling now was more excruciating then any physical pain he had ever been dealt. It was his soul. His soul had been ripped out his body. He had nothing buthis rage and fury left. In the course of a few short months, he had lost his planet, his pride, his peace of mind and now his soul. Bulma had been that neccesary part of him, the part that gave him a reason to go on and now she was gone. He cursed himself for ever allowing her to come to mean this much to him. He would never allow anything to touch him this way again. He angrily ignored the little voice inside his head that refused to let her go. Bulma was dead. He needed to deal with that and get on with things or he would never kill Frieza.
"Set a course for Chikyuu. That is where the fuel is." He swallowed hard. Frieza's defeat would be won by her hard work. He pushed it away. No he wouldn't do this now. Not in front of these people.
"Alright." Toma turned to go.
"Vegeta." Kakkarot's voice was small. " I never wanted her to die. My father was with her you know and I never wanted them to die, but I couldn't let you kill yourself too. Bulma wouldn't have wanted it."
"What do you know of what Bulma wanted?" Vegeta sneered the words at him. He could remember the joy on her face when she had realized that he had come to get her off that fucking planet. Instead he had let her die. He closed his eyes.
"I know she loved you Vegeta. I know that she wanted you to be happy and she would not have wanted you to blame yourself for her death."
Brennon watched the two. It was obvious that Bulma's love had been returned. The Prince was devestated by her death. He was trying hard to put up a front, but it was easy enough to get past it. He laid his head back down on the table and rested. He was so tired. Maybe things would be better if he rested.
Britton felt badly for what he had said. He had been angry. Angry at so many things and Vegeta had just seemed the perfect target. He cleared his throat. "Vegeta, I'm sorry. I shouldn't have blamed you for her death."
Vegeta glared at him, hatred shining brightly in the coal black eyes.. "I don't require your pity, now leave me alone. " He turned away from the man. Bulma's brother. What a joke. Look where caring about her family had gotten her. He felt himself seal up another part of his heart.
Kakkarot turned sadly and walked back up to the cockpit. He had realized that Vegeta would never forgive him for stopping him, yet he had hoped that maybe somewhere Vegeta would understand why. His friendhsip with Vegeta had been strained past the point of repair. He was Vegeta's enemy now. They might unite in the battle against Frieza, but after that Vegeta would come to kill him. Kakkarot wondered if he would just let him. He had lost something to. His father. That loss was slowly eating at him. That he had been unable to do anything to help his father, or if he had waited a little longer outside of the docking bay, they might have been able to clear a path through the guards to get him and Bulma in. He shook his head. He was going to drive himself crazy with all the what ifs. He managed to make it up to his seat before the tears came. For some reason crying in front of Toma wasn't as horrible as it would have been to break down in front of Vegeta. He felt Toma's reassuring hand on his shoulder.
"It'll be alright boy. It'll be alright."
Frieza stared at Ginyu. "Has there been any word of our missing Prince, Ginyu."
"No, my lord, I have received a few garbled reports from Hell of some kind of happening, but the firestorm has knocked out all communications."
"Of course. He's gone after his little whore. Well Vegeta, I suppose you just made your final decision."
He looked up into Ginyu's face. " I want you to find our Prince, Ginyu and I want him dead. I want you to kill his whore in front of him, use her if you want to. Make sure he suffers, then kill him."
Vegeta had made his last mistake. Frieza had offered him everything. Vegeta could have had everything, but no he had continued to reject him and deny him the thing that he had most wanted from the Prince. His very soul. Well that was fine. He would suffer ightily for that denial. "You have made a fool of me for the last time, Vegeta." He sneered at Ginyu. "Go now and search him out.Make it as painful as possible."
"Yes, my lord. Your wish shall be my pleasure to carry out." He turned and strode out of the throne room.
Frieza smiled. "Yes, Vegeta. What goes around has come around. It's your turn now."
Bardock came around slowly. How long had he been out? He was overwhelmed by the smell of burning flesh. Was that him? Had he been burnt beyond recognition. He lifted his hand in front of his face and looked. No it looked alright. He heard a moan next to him. Bulma. He turned and looked her over. She was alright. He couldn't see anything but superficial cuts and burns. His eyes widened as his hands traced over her abdomen. There was another strong ki there. She was pregnant. He lifted himself up out of the pipe cautiously. The firestorm had seemed to abate. It must be what this planet considered a nighttime. There was no one else around. He looked through the clear walls of the docking bay. The ship was gone. My God, they had left them behind. He clenched his teeth. What in the hell were they going to do now? How could Toma or Kakkarot have just flown off and left them. As possessive as Vegeta was about Bulma, he doubted the prince would have even considered leaving the planet unless he thought she were dead. He groaned to himself. That was it. They must have thought that they had been killed. If that was the case, then they had no hope of anyone coming to rescue them. Unless he still had his transmitter. He felt around for it, but it was gone. Dammit. They were stuck here. He lowered himself back down inside the pipe. At least they hadn't been discovered. It was a bit cooler down here. Not much, but better then it was up there. How long until they were discovered. He laid his head back and rested. He needed to get as much as he could. Maybe then he could make some kind of plan of action.
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