Disclaimer: I do not own DBZ.

Foreword: This is essentially a prequel to my Hybrid Theory series, BUT it isn`t directly involved and can be used as a substitute for the Bardock Special if someone wants. Also note that this is only listed with Goku and Raditz because they`re the only TV series characters who really show up in this one.




Preludes
For Whom The Bell Tolls



Kanassa. A desert hellhole inhabited by a race of powerful psychic warriors. These people averaged in at about the same size as most normal human beings as far as height went, though they were exceptionally muscular, scaly, tough and well adapted to life in the desert. The world they inhabited was rumored - incorrectly, of course - to grant psychic powers to those who live there long enough, powers which included the ability to see into the future.

It had been a gift of vexing nature, in more ways than one. Because of their gift, the people of Kanassa were able to see changes in the weather patterns of their world, and they were able to perfectly tell what an enemy`s next move would be before it was even made. The people of Kanassa were gifted and cursed because of this fact, and they had spent generations training a hardened warrior class, even going so far as to teach children how to fight as a result of it.

In the end though, as Warrior Leader Sousu Patas desperately threw his arms up into a block, it was going to prove absolutely futile in every single way one could imagine. In an instant, scales crumbled and bones worn hard by decades of top level combat training cracked and broke from what was considered, by his attacker, to be a damnably weak blow.

"Doesn`t look like we`ll get much resistance here," a woman stated, climbing out of a hauntingly familiar silver pod as the attacker drew his arm back, spitefully kicking the surviving Kanassan in the chest. The rest was the warrior`s instant death, flying back before his entire chest exploded into a gaping hole. The body landed with a crash into a wall made of adobe, bringing an entire building down around the fallen defender`s body.

Great walls hung behind that same building, stretching hundreds of feet skyward, reflecting as a concrete gray to the eyes of the five aliens standing before it. It was a fortress that had taken twenty years simply to set the foundations for, the only stronghold on the entire planet and apparently the place where the entire species had converged in preparation.

Toma smugly lowered his leg back down, glancing over at Bardock with an amused expression. "I don`t really see why you wanted us to wait for the full moon anyway," he stated with an equally amused voice. The five member team`s commander merely shrugged in reply, narrowing his eyes and tapping one of the buttons on his scouter. It wasn`t one of the advanced models, it could only read individual powers of up to 15,000 or so, though Bardock had rigged his with a safety device that caused it to shut down rather than explode as a result of overloading. Despite the fact that it was basic, it did the trick well enough that he knew what he and the others were dealing with.

"Pay attention to your scouter, Toma. We`re five people averaging at 1,200 having to deal with fighters packing 1,000 for their main soldiers. Five against several thousand, do the math," Bardock shot back bluntly, looking up at the midnight clouds and pooling a bit of energy into one hand. "Caught off your guard again, eh?" Celipa quipped, drawing an annoyed glance from the other, who merely huffed and leered over at the fortress. "Doesn`t mean we couldn`t have some fun if we tried it during daylight," he grumbled.

"Doin` somethin` boss?" Panboukin, the heaviest of the five Saiyans, asked. "Getting us a nightlight," Bardock replied smoothly, flinging the collected energy out of his hand and sending it skyward before letting loose with a faster, weaker bit of energy, this time in the form of a thin, precise beam, which struck the first blast perfectly once it made it into the clouds, literally blasting open a gaping hole in the blackness of the sky to display the full moon of the planet.

Make us fight on the hill in the early day

The sound to follow was one that had lit up the nightmares of Kanassans for close to seventy years as all five of the Saiyan warriors gazed up into the light of the moon and found themselves changing instantly. Eyes began to fade to a solid, bloody shade of red, brownish fur sprouted across their bodies, thick and tough. Tails lengthened, bodies became wider and taller in a matter of seconds, and snouts lined with teeth sharp enough to sever a man in half with frightening ease came to force through the faces of the five Saiyans.

Constant chill deep inside

By the time the transformation had ended, all five Oozaru were being attacked by every warrior in the fortress, with ki blasts powerful enough to level naval battleships zinging off of the battlements of the walls, dozens at a time. Battlecries, epic in their desperation, sounded throughout the enormous structure that surrounded what the Oozaru could now identify as a largely built city, filled with the hustle and bustle of activity that was obviously coming in response to the impending assault.

Not that it would do them any good.

Shouting gun, on they run through the endless grey

Toma let out a feral roar and drew his arm back, quickly swiping a closed fist across the top of the external wall, ending the lives of close to a hundred Kanassans in one fell swoop. Totepo - the veteran member of the group - was faster to get right to business though, opening his mouth with an equally loud roar and vomiting forth an immense blast of raw energy, sheering through the enormous walls in seconds and continuing on to plow a wide, deep trench into the inside of the city it protected.

"Rally! This is the moment we have spent our lives training for, let`s not waste it now!" One of the Kanassans shouted, putting his hands forward and unleashing a machine gun-styled series of energy blasts up at the face of one of the Oozaru, namely Panboukin.

On they fight, for they are right, yes, but who's to say?

"They aren`t invincible!" A Kanassan exclaimed with glee, succeeding in slicing open the giant ape`s cheek with one of his blasts. His effort was rewarded with a swift, lethal swipe from Panboukin`s tail, reducing the warrior to a cloud of blood and scales, spraying through the air like bullets to kill a dozen or so of his comrades.

For a hill men would kill, why? They do not know

By daybreak, the slaughter was over.

Thousands of dead bodies - or in most cases, what was left of them - littered the ground. Buildings that once held a primitively basic charm to them had been reduced to violently crafted ruins, and craters marked the entire span of what had once been a great city. It was still a city though, only now it was a city of the dead, shared by five solitary members of the living, the same people who had so ruthlessly, uncaringly slaughtered the Kanassans like animals.

The same people who now sat around inside of a crater with one another, talking about the past night`s events like it was all one big camping trip to them.

"I`ll never get the hang of that," Celipa complained dryly, fixing her scouter back into place. "That makes two of us... Sometimes I can remember bits and pieces of it all, but most of the time it`s like a dream. I`ll remember most of it for a little while and then completely forget," Totepo replied. "I only remember the little bastard who gave me this... Ossna damn thing itches like hell," Panboukin grumbled his way into the conversation, scratching at the open cut on his cheek with annoyance.

"Bardock say`s he can remember everything," Toma said with a smirk. Celipa let out a blunt laugh in reply. "He doesn`t even remember when his own son was born!" She replied. Bardock only leaned forward and spat out the piece of grass he had turned into a chew toy over the course of an hour or so, leaning forward and shaking his head. "What`s the point of getting attached them when they`re always sent away?" He asked cynically. "Do you even know how many kids you have?" Toma asked, obviously mocking in his tone.

" Raditz," Bardock answered carelessly. "Wrong," Celipa cut in. "You completely forgot that you had a third son born just the other day."

"How the hell was I supposed to know when the only news we ever get this far out is about the damned Royal Family?" Bardock asked. "We were only at the hospital yesterday," Toma pointed out. "Given how often you come back half-dead, it`s not too surprising either... Hell, surprised Koroumi only smacked you once this time," Celipa commented. "Through a wall," Bardock finished, completely unphased at the mention of his wife`s antics. His relationship with her had never been the best, after all. "Could`ve at least stopped in to see the little runt," Totepo commented.

"I don`t even know his name," Bardock shrugged, and at that moment, his scouter went wild. In near unison, every member of the team shot up to their feet, but by then it was too late to do much good.

Men of five, still alive through the raging glow

The attack to follow was swift and stealthy, unnervingly silent as well. Bardock let out a wheezing gag as the chop went to the back of his neck, sending him crashing to his knees in disorientation more than actual pain. The same attack was made an instant later on both Toma and Celipa, who met it with similar reactions, both falling forward from the stunning effects of the attacks rather than any actual pain. Totepo was the fastest to react though, with over three decades 'in the biz,' he had the instincts to duck out of the way, knowingly kicking Panboukin in the stomach and throwing him out of the way of another attack, allowing them both to avoid what had happened to Bardock, Toma and Celipa.

Gone insane from the pain and then they surely know

A haunting laugh echoed through the crater as Totepo got back to his feet, followed by an utterly annoyed Panboukin, both glaring over at the demonically smiling Kanassan, who was apparently set ablaze in a white aura.

"Fools!" He chastised sharply. "You came to this planet seeking our gift, well I gave it to you," the Kanassan growled. "With time, you might have changed, might have understood the futility of your ways but now... Now you must suffer the way we did."

"What the hell is he talking about?!" Panboukin growled angrily. "I don`t know but I think it`s time to shut him up," Totepo replied, pooling up energy into his right hand.

"Oh, you may silence me, but can you silence the screams in your friends` minds? For they now bear our gift - and our curse... They will see the future, and they will see their own dooms, just like we did, unable to do anything about it at all!"

The Kanassan broke into a fit of laughter, but it didn`t last. Totepo made sure of it himself, blasting the already dying warrior right out of existence with one furious bolt of ki, plowing out a second crater into the wall of the one he and the others were already located in.

For whom the bell tolls

A boy at the age of four, a man at the age of five. Toma had no clue what he was seeing or even how it was happening, the child wouldn`t face him but he could tell it was a Saiyan. With a tail like that, it had to be. It was the middle of a field at night, atop a gigantic rock pillar as the child stared vacantly into a moonless, star lit sky.

And then the boy who had been a man at five became an aged war veteran at thirteen, standing atop the shattered remains of that same pillar. His tail was gone, his hair had changed but Toma recognized him all the same.

And then the sequence ended. He was standing on Bejita. It was the afternoon, the red-and-orange skies of the capital city sparked with a second sun that seemed to stand out even in the background of the first. But something was wrong, very wrong...

The second sun was growing. Fast.

Time marches on

She saw herself running down a nearly vacant hangar, filled to the brim with mostly empty Saiyan space pods, being trailed by a boy of the age of two, though there were two others as well. A sobbing infant who bore more than a passing resemblance to Bardock was held in one arm, another infant, though this one was wounded and screaming twice as loud as his counterpart, being held in the other.

With moments to spare, she came to a screeching halt, the boy behind her toppling over after tripping on his own feet while she set either of the infants down into either space pod, gently pausing to run a hand down the cheek of the one who was injured.

And then she stepped back, said something indecipherable and grabbed the older boy, literally slinging him into a space pod, kicking and screaming before she keyed in the controls and slammed the pod shut. "Just live," she ordered with the tone of a surrogate mother, darting down the hallway and hitting the mandatory launch buttons for every pod in the hangar at once.

For whom the bell tolls

He was standing alone atop a half-a-mile tall building. Injury marred him, but he couldn`t really feel it. All he felt was emotion; desperation, hatred, betrayal and rage like none he`d ever felt in his life, mixed with a hope that seemed so out of place it could scarcely be comprehended. Slowly, he leered skyward, watching a small speck of black against the immense glare of the sun, which caused his eyes to naturally wince somewhat to compensate.

"Totepo... Panboukin..."

He heard the words, but didn`t even know he was saying them. It was like he was nothing more than a passenger in his own body, able to feel the emotions of whoever this was, able to distinctly, definately identify the body as his own and even able to smell the blood, sweat and tears streaked around his nose.

"Celipa... Toma..."

He could even feel this man`s sorrow, joy, love and hatred as if it were his own - because in truth, these things were his own.

"... Kakarot..."

His son`s name? What was going on here?

"This is for you!"

An aura of bluish fire shot off of the ground and...

Take a look to the sky just before you die

He woke up, finding himself bathed in bluish slop, warm to the touch and a bit stinging to feel.

It's the last time you will

"All three of `em at once?" A familiar, slightly overweight voice asked, obviously more than a little concerned. Bardock slowly pried his eyes open with a hyperactive surge of energy rushing through his entire body. He found himself initially greeted by two faces, namely one Doctor Malaka, and another Doctor Planthor. He could remember them very well, mainly since these were the same two doctors who had both cared for Queen Noyin on her death bed mere weeks earlier, as well as delivered both of his sons. In addition to that, at least Planthor had delivered the Prince Vegeta, and they had both been assigned as the chief medics for Bardock`s team.

After them, he found himself staring at the forms of Totepo and Panboukin, the taller of the two leaned against the doorway with his arms crossed over his chest, the shorter eating a drumstick large enough for the leg bone to serve as a weapon to cave a man`s head in with ease. Bardock instantly knew why Panboukin was eating so casually though, it was his way of showing concern. Boukin, as most people called him, was one of the few overweight Saiyans alive, mainly due to three factors. The first was that he had a slightly slower immune system, the second was that he ate when he was worried and the third was that he worried a lot.

Totepo on the other hand, bore the look of a hardened soldier without so much as a bit of concern showing. Bardock saw straight through the facade, and it brought a bit of a smirk to him beneath the oxygen mask that was strapped to his face.

"I really hate when they don`t salt it right... It`s-" "-amned idiots need to be on their guard more oft-" "Am I hearing things?"

Four individual voices, two saying the same thing at the same moment, echoed through Bardock`s mind. The first two, in order, were Panboukin and Totepo, and the second two were Celipa and Toma.

Blackened roar, massive roar fills the crumbling sky
Shattered goal fills his soul with a ruthless cry

"... What the hell?"
Bardock thought, careful not to voice his words. Malaka and Planthor were both notoriously concerned for him, to the extent that they thought he was a lunatic for all of the times he`d come back half-dead and gone back out without so much as a care in the world, uncaring even of how few soldiers he took with him to battle.

Stranger now, are his eyes, to this mystery

"You may silence me, but can you silence the screams in your friends` minds?"

"Did anyone else hear that?" Toma asked drearily, glancing out from the confines of the regen tank they had stuck him in. "Hear what?" Totepo asked. "Guess that chop knocked his hearing out too," Boukin joked, smirking ruthlessly at his currently immobile comrade, knowing that whatever he did, Toma wouldn`t be able to do jack to stop him other than trying to insult him.

For all of his concern, Panboukin had one ill sense of humor to go with it.

"Don`t you even think it, lard ass," Toma growled annoyedly as Panboukin grinned like a maniac.

He hears the silence so loud

"Nice to see Boukin and Toma are still bitching... Means we`ll actually get out of this dumpy hellhole by the end of the day,"
Bardock heard Celipa think. It was absolutely unnerving to him as he started to struggle somewhat, shifting his focus off of the others and to the doctors, namely Malaka, who was staring at a nearby console with a very curious expression.

Before he could do or say anything though, another vision hit.

Crack of dawn, all is gone except the will to be

A planet, familiar, enormous and colored an implacably dangerous tone of orange and red, streaked with faded white and resting amid a background of two suns in the distance, forever locked on a collision course that would one day birth a super nova. Bardock recognized it instantly, because he had seen it dozens of times.

It was Vegetasei. Also known as Bejita, and a good many other names. Something was wrong though, because there was an odd cloud of specks hanging in front of the planet, accompanied by a larger speck that he could vaguely recognize as a Saucer-class War Transport, but there was a faint orange glow coming from above it, matched by a bright silver glow within the larger cloud.

The silver streaked towards the top of the ship, where the orange glow was coming from, but it was promptly consumed as the ball of energy shot up in size, becoming as large as the already huge ship itself, then continuing to expand until finally...

"Ossna, no..." Bardock said to himself at the vision, watching the Death Ball tumble forward with speed he could scarcely even perceive, wanting to somehow go down there and try to stop it in a futile effort, but unable to even try and do anything other than watch.

And listen.

"KAKAROT!!!"

Now they see what will be, blinded eyes to see

The vision ended before he could hear, say, do or even think anything else, lurching forward as Malaka spoke up, listening to the doctor over the sound of his own ragged breathing.

"It seems that their bodies are all fine - actually a little better than usual since they`re actually letting themselves heal this time..." The doctor stated. "But?" Totepo asked expectantly. "But there`s been a complete change in all of their brainwaves... Everything keeps spiking briefly and their memory centers seem to have something wrong with them, I`m not entirely sure what it might be though."

"In other words, you don`t have a single clue if it`s good or not," Boukin deduced with little effort. "Pretty much," Planthor replied.

For whom the bell tolls

"Yeah well... Since you`re all out of it, me an` Totepo here`ll handle the next job on our own," Panboukin stated. "Dumpy little hellhole called Meat," he added. The other Saiyan merely shrugged and gave a small salute to Bardock before walking out of the room. "Must still be pissy about going bald," Toma commented dryly. "Not everyone`s as lucky as you when it comes to hair genes," Boukin shot back before following the other Saiyan out of the room. By then though, it was already too late.

Celipa`s thoughtful silence shattered, at least on the mental level, as the two left.

Time marches on

"They`re both going to die..."

For whom the bell tolls

End Part One