Disclaimer: I own nothing.
He didn't know how he got on the spaceship. Of the whole story, that was the detail that disturbed him the most. He'd been wandering around its cold, steel-covered corridors for a while, but no matter how much he raked his brain, he still could not figure it out.
He wasn't even sure it was a spaceship, now that he came to think of that. He'd just assumed it was one, since it vaguely resembled Freeza's. Not that he had a long time to study it, what with having to escape from an exploding Planet Namek. Okay, not getting distracted Goku. You have to get out of here one way or another.
The corridor he was into was badly-lit and apparently endless. Right, left, left, right, right, left... When he finally reached a door, he had to actually stop and check it was real. It took him another second to figure out how to open it; he was used to doors with handles, not buttons.
He entered a wide room. What hit him immediately was the wall that wasn't a wall at all, but a glass panel showing the dark and cold depth of space. Goku was so entranced with it that he almost didn't notice the lone figure semi-hidden in a dark corner of the control room. He had been gazing at the stars for hours, but when he heard the door sliding open he'd turn to stare at the intruder.
Finally, their eyes met and they both froze.
The lone figure exhaled a breathy laugh. "It seems I have finally gone insane", he whispered, shaking his head in what could be amusement or desperation.
Goku was working on his own theories. He wasn't too fond of the insanity one, so he decided to settle on the good ol' "I must be dreaming". Now, if only he could wake up...
"So, what are you? A hallucination or a ghost?", the shadow asked conversationally.
Goku blinked. "What?".
The figure sighed. "My first social interaction in centuries is with a deficient peasant. How very fitting", he complained aloud.
Goku blinked again. First social interaction... in centuries?
"Look, I don't know what game you're playing, but I won't stand here and let you insult me. Because you were insulting me, right?".
Thin, dark lips stretched into a ghostly smile. "Oh dear, an impudent silly monkey. Again. I think I've just felt a wave of nostalgia".
Goku's eyes narrowed dangerously. Of all the villains he fought against it had to be this one.
"Seriously, though, I truly am curious. Why you, why now? Why would my mind conjure up your image? Are you a message from my subconscious?", the figure insisted.
Goku said nothing in reply. He was wondering whether slapping him-self would wake him up faster...
Suddenly, an image hit him. He was standing in front of a door. No, not really a door. More like an arch. A steely, mechanical arch...
"... not allow the product of my very own mind to ignore me! Pay attention when I talk to you!".
The Saiyan's concentration broke. "Huh?".
Goku was once again distracted by the strange images on the back of his head. The arch was now glowing and he had the distinct impression that other people were there as well. Were they speaking to him? He seemed to recall instructions. "We will give you 10 minutes, not a second more. 10 minutes and then we bring you home".
How long he'd been here for?
"You may be a bit confused when you get... well, wherever you get. We won't know for sure until you test the machine, but there shouldn't be any dangerous side-effects".
Kami, he was definitely feeling confused! Who was he talking to? He really should...
His chin was grabbed roughly. A cold hand brought his face level with even colder eyes.
"I. Will. Not. Be. Ignored".
In that very moment, Goku remembered. Bulma, requesting his help to test a very intriguing and potentially lethal invention; him-self, accepting enthusiastically the new challenge; doctor Briefs, warning him that they would give him only ten minutes to explore... Oh Kami...
He frantically clawed at the hand that was still clutching his chin. "Let go! You have to let go!".
A nasty little smirk answered his pleas. "Or what?".
A loud sucking noise, a sudden sense of void and a vortex of white light later, they were no longer facing the blackness of space but a crowd of concerned faces. Nobody spoke.
Goku felt nauseous. White lights danced in front of his eyes and that damn hand was clutching his chin so hard that he was sure it was about to break. He couldn't take it any more. His eyes rolled inside his head and he blacked out.
Seeing their friend slumping to the ground unfroze the silent bystanders. They immediately surrounded him, screaming in concern, calling for a doctor, asking him questions... It was all a little too much for the silent villain, whose last encounter with sentient life took place exactly 458 years prior. It didn't end well.
He frantically extended his mind, searching the planet for something he could use, and it was with great surprise that he found it. He latched onto it and ITed away from the ruckus. No one saw him go.
Vegeta had been in the wasteland for a while. Strangely enough, he wasn't in the mood for training and was content to stare off into the distance. He felt betrayed. He'd known that Bulma had just completed one of her contraptions, hell, she'd been talking about it non stop for months. He'd also known that, since nobody could predict what the outcome would be, she wanted the machine tested by someone who could take care of themselves. He immediately assumed she'd ask him. After all, he was the living and breathing definition of "able to take care of him-self" and he lived in her own bloody home. She asked Kakarott.
-You don't have the best of records when it comes to helping-, a part of his brain argued.
-She could have asked me!-, another retorted, -I would have said yes!-.
-Go back and tell her, then-.
-I won't go back and beg her, I certainly don't need her pity!-.
-You'll have to go back, eventually-.
-Is that so?-.
-Stop being stupid-.
-If I'm stupid, then you're a...-.
The other part of his brain never found out what it was, for at that very moment he appeared. Right in front of him. Out of thin air, as if HFIL had suddenly vomited him out. They stared at each other incredulously.
"How the hell did you get here?!", Vegeta screamed menacingly.
The other simply looked at him, too surprised to speak. Then, he hesitantly raised a hand and moved it towards the Saiyan. Vegeta steeled him-self for an attack and was therefore shocked when the limb merely came to rest on his cheek. It was so cold that it almost made him jump.
"You're alive...", he heard the hated voice whisper.
"You're alive", the monster repeated, "How? I killed you".
"Have I really gone crazy? First the stupid monkey and now you. You must be a hallucination. But you feel so real. So warm...".
The Prince wouldn't admit it even under torture, but he was a little spooked. The monster sounded even crazier than normal! He started to pull away, only to realise that he couldn't; the second he'd moved, the other's tail had woven around his form, trapping his arms at his sides.
"How dare you! Release me this instant, Freeza!".
The Arcosian sighed in relief. Finally something familiar! He could deal with an enraged Vegeta in his sleep. With a smile blossoming on his lips, he slapped the struggling Prince.
Vegeta's outburst halted as the Saiyan looked at him outrageously. When he opened his mouth to start again, Freeza happily slapped him again.
"Are you going to be quiet now?", the tyrant asked in a pleasant tone.
Vegeta opened his mouth. Freeza raised his hand.
They studied each other for a minute. Then, "What the hell are you doing here?", Vegeta asked in a low voice.
Freeza stared blankly at him for a second before admitting, "I have no idea where here is".
"I was on my ship minding my own business when your stupid monkey friend appeared and brought me here".
"Kakarott? But he was supposed to be testing Bulma's invention...".
Oh. Oh... Damn!
Freeza smiled seeing the Prince's horrified face. "Don't tell me. Some kind of interdimensional portal?".
"How the hell did you...".
"Come now, my dear boy, it really doesn't take a lot of imagination. Besides, were we still in my reality, I wouldn't be talking to you now".
Vegeta sneered. "Just because you killed me once...".
"I killed you twice. You came back to life after the first time thanks to the Namekian Dragon...".
"Then I was transported to Earth and Kakarott did away with you in his Super Saiyan form".
-Well, sort of-, Vegeta amended mentally.
Freeza cocked his head to one side. "Is that what happened in this reality? Interesting. Well, in mine I intercepted the little green maggot before it could voice the second wish and... persuaded it to request eternal life and youth on my behalf. Then, I did away with Goku in his Super Saiyan form".
The tyrant's eyes veiled as he reminisced.
"It was glorious. The desperate look in his eyes when he realised that he couldn't beat me, no matter what he did. The pain etched on his features when I pierced his heart. Delicious! And you! The bold hero! Trying to help the legendary Super Saiyan defeat the evil overlord. When he died, I thought you were going to cry again! Didn't even try to run when I got to you".
The tail coiled more tightly around the Saiyan, who almost didn't notice caught up as he was in the monster's tale. It was both sickening and captivating, hearing about the death he could've experienced.
"Our second time was even more enjoyable than the first. It was over much more quickly, but there was a better atmosphere. No irritating insects, just the two of us. It felt more... intimate, I suppose. A beam to the heart wasn't going to cut it. So I strangled you, with my bare hands. Saw the light go out of your eyes. Slowly. I savoured every moment...".
When a white hand rose in the direction of his throat, Vegeta decided he'd heard enough. He ascended with a roar and freed him-self from the tyrant's grip. The Arcosian's eyes widened as he took in the awing view.
"Why... You too?".
"Did you have any doubts?", Vegeta smirked, "Now, go back to the hell that vomited you out! BIG BANG ATTACK!".
The wave of blue energy rushed toward the petrified villain and completely engulfed him. One great explosion later, all that was left were cinders.
Vegeta laughed merrily. "Yes! Take that, you disgusting lizard! I shall thank the woman and the clown for giving me the chance to...".
A white, cold hand appeared out of thin air and wrapped tightly around his throat. He was mid-speech and hadn't managed to take any air into his lungs. He helplessly gazed into dead red eyes as he started to choke.
"Tell me, my dear", Freeza whispered sweetly, "What part of "I'm immortal" is causing you trouble? Is it because it's a long word? Would you like me to explain the concept? Well, I must say that denying reality is a skill you mastered very young. I'm the strongest, I'm not your slave, daddy didn't abandon me, blah, blah, blah... It was funny, until it became annoying".
The tyrant noted that the gloved hand's grip on his forearm was weakening; however, he was too lost in progressively duller green eyes to do anything about it.
"Why were you so ridiculously stubborn? There's no shame in kneeling before a god. Even your oaf of a father understood that. Not you. Not the proud, spoiled, naughty little prince. Stupid little thing. You could have accomplished so much if only...".
Freeza cut him-self out. The hand clutching his arm had fallen down lifelessly; the eyes staring into his were no longer green or focused. He sighed and released the Prince, whose body started to fall from the sky. Freeza easily caught it and studied the Saiyan's feature. Air flew between parted lips. The Prince was still alive.
Freeza nodded, satisfied. Saiyans were very resilient. However, he should be more careful or he'll end up killing him by mistake. Like he did with King Cold. He hadn't meant to do that. Cooler, on the other hand, had been on his hit list for a very long time.
Yes, Freeza can use IT. I'll explain later, I swear!
Thank you for reading and do tell me what you think!