Hey guys! I'm so sorry for the delay with this chapter, it took much longer then I had expected. To be honest, I've been kinda down lately and as a result it's been pretty hard to get myself motivated to do anything, let alone write, so for that, I'm deeply sorry.
I'm so thrilled to be over 200 reviews! Wow! I'm so flattered, I never imagined that people would still want to read my story after my four year hiatus. I love you all!
I just wanted to respond quickly to dcp1992; thank you for your long review, it's the longest I've ever received! I just want to mention that I started writing this story when I was in grade 7, lol and back when I had no interest in proof reading. I apologize for all the typos, I'm tempted to go back at some point and fix them all someday! Now that I'm an educator (but still a nerd at heart!) myself, I make sure I review everything I write now…the odd one makes it through, but I've made sure the mix-ups are little to none now! Also, thank you for your compliments on the plot line and the suspense. I tried to imagine what would keep me wanting more, how I would feel, what do I considered suspenseful…then attempted to put them into my story. Thank you for your kind words!
Ultimately, one of my goals I look to portray in my story is that we are never truly alone when we're in our darkest times. There is and always will be someone to turn to, you just have to trust them. I've learned that through my life issues, and I want to convey that with my story.
I'm so glad so many of you have remarked on me keeping the characters with their original personalities. I've read a few fanfics with different personalities, it felt so…unnatural to me. For me, I write how I would picture them talking and at the end of the day, I always enjoy their original personalities most so I've done my best to keep them!
I feel I should clarify, I don't hate Hercule; I was just in a really bad place at the time and he provided a scapegoat for this story I had envisioned. It also allowed me to develop the relationship between Gohan and Videl more.
But anyways, enough with my ramblings! Let's get this show on the road, shall we?
Chapter 27: Days in Between
Gohan woke up silently and cast a glance down at the sleeping frame curled up against his side. He allowed a small smile to spread on his lips as he noticed she was sleeping peacefully. He heaved a sigh and cast a glance at the clock and realized it was still pretty early in the morning. His stomach began to beg for food, not wanting to wake up Videl with his stomach grumblings, he slowly slid out from the covers of the bed.
He stood up and stared at her again, making sure she was still asleep. He quietly made his way out the door and headed towards the kitchen. He yawned as he moved quickly towards the kitchen, scratching his stomach as he stared blankly ahead as he made his way through the dark halls.
He moved to the kitchen and peered into the fridge, allowing his tired eyes to adjust to the light beaming in his face. He grabbed a carton of milk that was half full and an apple before he pushed the door closed with his hip. He took a big gulp of milk and set it down on the counter as he took a bite of the apple.
"Couldn't sleep either?" He heard a voice come from the door frame.
Gohan jumped and started coughing as he pounded his chest with his fist to dislodge the piece of fruit that he was choking on. He looked behind him and saw his dad standing there with a bashful smile.
"Sorry, I thought you would have sense me" he said as Gohan started to regain a normal breathing pattern.
"You scared me" Gohan panted, taking a quick gulp of milk before casting a glance up at his dad. "What are you doing up?" he asked as he jumped up to sit on the counter.
"I felt kinda hungry too, then I noticed you were down here so I thought I'd make sure things were ok. How's Videl doing?" he questioned as he grabbed a banana off the counter.
"She's doing ok I guess, she ate half a plate of food tonight, which is the most she's eaten in almost a week. She did complain of stomach pains afterwards…but she's slept through the night so far with no issue. She still just seems off…" he said quietly, taking another bite from his apple.
"Well that's a start, it'll take her awhile to get back to her old self. She's been through a pretty major event" Goku replied through bites of his banana.
"It kind of feels like she needs a change of scenery" Gohan mused, scratching the back of his head as he looked over to his father.
"Maybe that's exactly what she needs" Goku offered as Gohan seemed to perk up.
"Maybe she'd feel better if I took her home?" he questioned, earning a nod from his father.
"I could talk with your mom so just the two of you could go over there. Then if Karie needed to contact you I could just do instant transmission and bring her over" Goku said, earning a smile from his son.
"I know she loves being here… I think she'd just feel better in her own bed, away from the city and the news that keeps flying around. Maybe some time in the mountains is what she needs to perk up a little" he said as he finished his apple and took another gulp of milk.
"I think that's a great idea Gohan. The mountains always helped clear my mind when I was stressed" Goku said, finishing off his banana.
Gohan took a long gulp of the milk and finished the carton off. "Thanks dad, I think that will help cheer her up" he said as he hopped off the counter and threw out the apple core. "I think I'm going to head back to bed, hopefully she won't have any nightmares while I'm gone" he said as he lifted his arms to stretch as he covered a big yawn.
Goku gave a nod, "I think I'm going to follow your lead" he said quietly as the two moved out of the kitchen towards their room.
The two walked in a comfortable silence as they made their way to their rooms, both realizing just how tired they were after their late night snack.
Gohan turned to his dad and offered a small smile, "night dad….thanks" he said, earning a smile from his dad.
"Night Gohan" he said as he watched his son give a small wave then move back into his room. He stared at the closed door for a moment, letting a smile come to his lips. He remembered what it was like to be so young and in love, but it was more heartwarming knowing that as tough as everything was Gohan and Videl were going through, in the long run it was only making them stronger. "Keep up the good work, son" he said quietly, pausing before he moved to go back into his room and join Chi Chi in bed again.
~*~*~A Few Hours Later~*~*~
Cheerful humming could be heard in the hallways, Karie expertly navigated her way through the Briefs mansion. After receiving a call early this morning that the district attorney wanted to interview a few people as well as test the regeneration chamber, she wanted to make sure she could inform Bulma as soon as possible that he would be coming over later that day.
She paused for a moment then grinned as she changed directions and made her way towards the kitchen. After first hand witnessing the power of the saiyan stomach, she figured she'd find someone in there. She continued her cheerful humming as moved through the long hallways.
As expected, she found someone in the kitchen, that someone was Bulma. "Morning Mrs. B!" she said cheerfully causing the older woman to jump and drop whatever it was she was pulling out of the fridge.
"Jesus Karie, you scared the crap out of me!" she yelled as she grasped her chest in order to calm her breathing, "I need to put a bell on you or something".
Karie gave a light laugh, "I was humming, I thought you would have heard me" she offered sheepishly as she watched Bulma bend down to pick up the items she dropped.
She raised an eyebrow as she moved to help her boss clean up, "whatcha making there?" she question, seeing random contents on the floor. She watched as Bulma seemed to struggle with carrying everything as a result of her growing belly being in the way. "We've got a tube of cookie dough, pizza, pickles and chocolate sauce" Karie said as she grabbed the contents from Bulma to lift them for her.
A blush crept across Bulmas cheeks, "I had a craving" she said bashfully.
"A cookie dough pizza with pickles and chocolate sauce dressing?" she questioned as Bulma blushed and nodded her head as she grabbed the items from Karie. "Cravings hit you like a ton of bricks, eh?" she said as Bulma started to combine the ingredients.
Bulma looked up from making her pizza and stared at Karie, "shut up" she said simply as grinned and took a big bite. She let a small moan escape her lips as she ate her pizza, "man this is so good!" she said as she took another big bite.
"You're so weird…" Karie said quietly as she gave her boss a disgusted look. "So, anyways…there is a reason I'm here so early" she said, drawing Bulmas attention away from her pizza.
"Drew wants to come over and interview Gohan and Saiyaman. He also wants to test the regeneration chamber…how he plans to do so I have no idea. But he wanted to come over today…a little after one in the afternoon that is" Karie said as Bulma frowned.
"Guess we don't really have a choice, do we?" Bulma muttered as she took another bite from her pizza.
"I tried to come over early to try and give everyone a warning. That and try and figure out a way for Gohan and Saiyaman to appear in the same place at once without him catching on" she said, grabbing a piece of fruit, casting another disgusted look as her boss made another slice of pizza.
"Morning Ladies" Goku said as he walked in and offered a wave to the two women. "Bulma what are you eating?" he asked, scrunching up his nose as he took a sniff to try and figure it out.
"Don't ask" Karie muttered as Bulma blushed again.
"I had a craving!" she offered weakly, taking a smaller bite of her pizza.
"Chi Chi always wanted pickles on everything too when she was pregnant with Gohan. Very strange…and kind of disgusting" he said as he watched his long-time friend continue to eat her creation.
"I did with Goten too, I'm pretty sure Gohan can't eat pickles anymore because of my concoctions" Chi Chi said as she came in to the kitchen wearing a large fluffy robe.
"It must be a Saiyan thing" Bulma pondered out loud.
Chi Chi gave a laugh, "I'm pretty sure I made something similar to that before" she remarked as she watched Bulma eat her bizarre pizza.
"Morning Mrs. S" Karie offered, turning the older woman's attention away from Bulmas food.
"Hello sweetie, how are you?" She asked with a small smile, turning the kettle on to make herself a tea, "Want one?" she offered, motioning to the tea cup.
"Actually, I'd love one," Karie said, receiving a nod from Chi Chi. "Drew wants to come over today and interview Gohan and Saiyaman" she added, earning a frown from Chi Chi.
"That sounds like it may stress Videl out" Chi Chi said, frowning at the kettle.
"Yeah…I'm sure it will. I'm not sure what excuse to use to get Gohans alter ego in the room without Drew catching on. That jerk is perceptive" she muttered.
"What is he just goes super? You said you told Drew that he and Saiyaman were the same person. He can interview Gohan, then show him the regeneration chamber and then from there Gohan can go super, then it buys time to look like we're waiting for Saiyaman" Goku offered, earning a grin from his wife.
"You always have the best plans" Chi Chi as she moved to hug her husband around his waist.
"That's actually a great idea" Karie said, earning a bashful smile from Goku, "Nice work Mr. S".
"Goku…Mr. S makes me feel old" he offered, a small blush creeping on his cheeks.
Before Karie could respond, a sleepy Goten walked into the room rubbing the sleep out of his eyes, "mommy when is breakfast?" he muttered.
Chi Chi heaved a sigh, "You just got downstairs… god you are your fathers son" she muttered earning a grin from Goku.
Goku bent down and picked up his youngest son, "I'm hungry too kiddo" he said as he propped him up on his shoulders. "Speaking of sons… Chi Chi I suggested to Gohan that he take Videl home and we stay here for a few more days" he said, catching his wife off guard as she handed the young lawyer a cup of tea.
"Why by themselves?" she questioned, a thin eyebrow arched as she directed her attention to her husband.
"It's not like that!" he exclaimed quickly, waving his hands in front of him in defence, "I just thought it's time away from everything in the city where the two of them could relax. It may help her sleep better and maybe get a little more food in her" he could hear Karie laughing lightly in the background.
"Do you really think she's going to want to have sex with your son after she had to kill her father?" A gruff voice responded from behind.
Bulma slapped Vegetas arms, "that was uncalled for" she scolded as Vegeta snorted in response.
"He does make a point…" Chi Chi trailed off. "I think the mountain air will be good for her, maybe some time in the hot springs and a hike or two in the mountains will help her" she thought out loud.
"Also, this way is Karie needs her, I can just instant transmission her over to them" Goku offered as his wife nodded in response.
"I think it's a good idea" She said earning a smile from her husband.
"Vegeta, the district attorney is coming over today, I would appreciate it if you behave" Bulma said, offering a glare to her husband.
"Isn't this the guy you ranted about being a self centered prick?" he questioned arching an eyebrow.
"Just behave!" she growled as Vegeta rolled his eyes.
"Hey kiddo, why don't you go wake up Gohan and Videl and tell them that the district attorney wants to interview him?" Goku asked Goten, interrupting the about to erupt argument.
"Ok daddy…but then breakfast" he said, giving a stern look to Goku as he put him on the ground.
"You got it buddy" he replied, messing up Gotens hair as he watched his youngest son go to wake up Gohan.
There was an uncomfortable silence in the room after Goten left. "Just a few more days" Karie said softly, breaking the silence. "It'll be over soon enough".
Videl let a small yawn escape her lips, she could feel the sun's rays hitting her face, but wanted to try and get a little more sleep. She felt an arm lightly gripping her waist, a small smile came to her face; something about waking up to Gohan was so soothing. She had been sleeping in his bed consistently for a few days now and since then she has finally been getting the sleep she desperately needed.
She felt her body tense up as she heard the bedroom door slowly creak open, she knew she was safe, but deep down she feared that her dreams would become a reality. She kept her back to the door and leaned back closer against Gohan as she heard soft footsteps getting closer to the bed.
"Gohan" she heard a soft voice whisper as Gohans arm was nudged lightly. Gohan groaned quietly in response and the soft voice whispered again.
"What is it squirt?" Gohan mumbled, not bothering to turn his head.
"Dad said I should wake you because the district attorney is coming over to talk to you…and I'm hungry" he said quietly, not wanting to wake Videl up.
Gohan gently turned to face his brother, "ok, thanks kiddo, I'll come down soon… I don't want to wake Videl up" Gohan whispered back, covering a yawn.
"I tried to be really quiet" Goten said, earning a smile from Gohan.
"You were squirt, I was already up" Videl said as she slowly turned and leaned up offering the two brothers a smile.
"Morning Videl" Goten said with a big grin.
"Morning handsome" Videl replied, earning a blush from Goten
"We'll be down soon squirt" Gohan said as Goten nodded, still blushing and quietly left the room.
"I wonder why he wants to talk to me" Gohan muttered as he laid back down and rubbed his eyes.
"Probably because you witnessed some of the crap my dad tried to pull… or maybe he wants to interview Saiyaman or the gold fighter" Videl offered, learning her head on Gohans broad chest.
"I don't know if I can be polite to him" Gohan said with a sigh as he brought his hand up to rub Videls back lightly.
"You only have to be polite as Gohan… you can be a dick as the gold fighter, he won't know who you are" She replied, earning a laugh from Gohan.
"I guess you're right" he said, leaning over to gently kiss Videl's forehead. "Oh…by the way I have something planned for tonight, I'm hoping it'll help you feel better" He said, drawing Videl's attention.
"Any what might that be?" She questioned, arching an eyebrow from curiosity.
Gohan offered a shrug, "Guess you're just going to have to wait and find out".
Videl gave him a small frown, "then let's get this over with" she said, giving Gohan a small shove, catching him off guard and knocking him half off the bed. Videl fell back laughing.
"That's not funny… I wasn't ready" he mumbled, sitting up halfway, his legs still on the bed.
"Neither is telling me that you have something planned but won't say what it is" she said with a big grin.
"You'll like it, I'm sure" he said, standing up and offering Videl a hand up.
Time was flying quicker than Videl would have wanted, she looked at the clock and before she could register the time, the doorbell echoed throughout the house. She felt her throat tighten as Karie stood up.
"I'll get it" she said quietly as she made the short walk towards the front door. She opened it and there was Drew standing in a suit with his briefcase in hand.
He offered Karie a grin, "hello beautiful".
Karie rolled her eyes, "can the small talk and let's get this over with", she watched as Drew's grin grew.
Before Drew could say anything she turned her back and motioned for Drew to follow her. They walked in silence towards the living room where the small group was relaxing. She paused at the entrance and turned sharply towards Drew, catching him off guard.
"This is Mrs. Brief's house, you will be respectful to her and the others who are in the house or I will be sure to have you thrown out and report you to the judge for gross unprofessionalism" Karie said sternly, sending a small glare towards Drew.
"People love me" he said, as he watched Karie's glare deepen.
"Not when you're trying to throw their loved on into prison for a chance to boost your career. Be polite and be quick." She said, watching as Drew's grin dropped.
She turned around and inhaled deeply as she walked through the entrance to greet the few people that were in there.
Gohan and Videl were sitting on the couch, Goku and Chi Chi were sitting beside them with, Goku playing with Goten on his lap. Bulma walked in the room a moment after Karie and Drew had entered.
"Good afternoon Mr. Bailey" Bulma said, leaning against the door frame.
"Good afternoon Mrs. Briefs" Drew said with a curt nod, "afternoon all" he said, receiving mumbled responses from the others of the group.
"So how shall we do this?" Drew questioned, averting his gave from the glares he was receiving from Gohan, Chi Chi and Goten. "Should I interview Gohan, the gold fighter and then see this healing chamber" he suggested.
Gohan could feel himself getting nervous as he tried to figure out a way to sneak off without the district attorney knowing he was the gold fighter.
"How about you interview Gohan, check out the chamber and then interview the gold fighter. That way he has time to arrive" Karie suggested, noticing as Gohan seemed to relax after she offered her suggestion.
"Works for me, shall we get started Gohan?" Drew questioned, before Gohan could respond he asked another question, "Where can I conduct these interviews in private?"
"Well, it won't be private as I will be in the room," Karie said, earning a glare from Drew, "We can go into Mrs. Briefs meeting room to conduct the interview".
"Gohan, if you would kindly follow me?" Karie said with a soft smile, motioning for Gohan to follow her.
Gohan took a quick glace over to Videl and gave her hand a squeeze. He nodded silently as he got up and followed the two lawyers out of the room.
A silence lingered in the room. "Is that the man who keeps saying mean things about Videl?" Goten asked quietly.
Chi Chi gave a small nod, "yes, sweetie, that's him" she said quietly.
Videl stood up quickly, "I think I'm going to get some exercise, I need to burn off some energy" she said quietly as she quickly left the room.
Goku stared at her Videl as she quickly made her way out of the room, "I think I'll go too" he said, standing up.
"I don't know if she wants company, sweetie" Chi Chi said as she lightly grasped Goku's hand to prevent him from going further.
"No, I'm sure she doesn't. But I think she needs a good talking to right now and like it or not she's going to get it. Besides, she's family, I want to try and help her the best I can" Goku said, earning a nod from His wife. He leaned down and kissed her cheek.
"Can I come too daddy?" Goten questioned, still perched on his mother's lap.
"No, I think I'm going to do this on my own kiddo. But thanks" Goku said, giving his youngest son a smile and ruffling his hair. "I'll see you all in a little while" he said with a wave as he made his way outside of the room, following the same way Videl left.
"Mommy, that man doesn't look so tough, why is everyone so worried?" Goten questioned, sticking his thumb in his mouth and glancing up at his mother.
Chi Chi let a small sigh out, "it's not that he's physically tough sweetie, he's got a power that no one here is quite used to. But hopefully Karie is stronger and can beat him" she said, offering a small smile to try and comfort her son.
"So I can't try and beat him up?" Goten asked, pouting slightly.
"I think that would do more harm than good," she said with a light laugh, "how about you go find Trunks and play?" she offered, earning an excited grin.
"Bye mom!" Goten said as he jumped off his mother and went to go find his friend.
"It'll work out" Bulma said, moving from her quiet spot on the side of the wall.
Chi Chi jumped a little, "you creep. I forgot you were there" she said, holding her chest a little to calm down her breathing.
"I like watching sometimes. I think Goku could be a good person to talk to Videl though" she said, taking a seat beside her best friend.
"You think so? Maybe it will help take a load off for Gohan" she said, leaning back and staring at the ceiling.
"Videl needs a father figure in her life, now that hers is gone. Goku obviously wants to be that father figure, and you know she looks up to him. Besides, Goku has had to kill before in self-defence, he probably can understand to a degree what she's going through, maybe offer some coping suggestions" Bulma offered, earning a smile from her friend.
"Yeah… I hope you're right".
Videl took a deep breath as she flipped over and swam another lap in the large pool. As hard as she was trying to be comfortable in her own skin and put weight back on, she desperately felt the need to be in control. She knew she was losing weight, but being in control of the amount of energy she burned was such a great chance regain control of some aspect of her life.
She completed her lap and stopped, her breath now ragged. She leaned her head up against the side of the pool and closed her eyes as she attempted to slow down her breathing.
"Cannon ball!" She heard someone yell, before she could react she a large splash stifled her scream.
She coughed up the water and frantically searched for who had scared her. She saw a familiar black mop of hair emerge from the water and give her a familiar grin.
"Goku…you… scared…me!" she exclaimed through pants.
Goku offered a sheepish grin, "Sorry, I thought I'd join you".
"I don't think I'm much company" she said quietly, again, leaning her head against the side of the pool.
Goku swam over to the side of the pool and grabbed two floating lounge chairs and pulled them into the pool. He hopped into one and motioned for Videl to do the same. He watched as she slowly pulled herself into the lounge chair and relax as she continued to try and catch her breath.
"I know what you're doing" he said nonchalantly, drawing the attention of the teen.
"Pardon?" she questioned.
"The exercise, it's a control thing" he said, watching as Videl's head snapped into his direction. "I've killed people before too".
"You killed to save the world" she said quietly.
"I killed to save myself and the ones I loved." He offered, watching as she cast her eyes downwards. "You killed to save yourself, because if you didn't he would have killed you. It's no different from when I had to kill people. Being merciful never works…I tried once… it got Krillin killed" His face took on a sad look as he recalled the events on Namek. "You couldn't have given him mercy, if you did, you'd be dead".
"Then why do I feel so terrible about it?" She said quietly.
"That's the downside to being a good person Videl. People like you and I pride ourselves on helping others, providing a service for them that they can't provide themselves. Killing is not in our nature…but sometimes it has to be done. Whether we like it or not" Goku said, a small smile crossing his features. "You went through so much in your life; you survived. But the only way you could have done that was by killing the opponent. It's not an ideal situation, but it had to be done."
"But… he was my father" she mumbled.
"I killed my brother when I was younger. He came and threatened my family and tried to kidnap Gohan. If I hadn't killed him, he would have killed Gohan," he gave a small laugh, "actually, he killed me as well, that was the first time I died. Well, I suppose technically Piccolo killed us both…but I held him in place, so we both got impaled by that beam cannon". He mused, before shaking his head. "But I know what it's like to kill a family member, and I know it's not easy".
Videl stared at Goku in amazement, anytime she spoke with him, she always learned something new and it always caused her develop a greater respect for her.
"The point is, it was a necessity. If my brother hadn't been killed, then Gohan would have been. And at 4 years of age if I let my son die, I would have never forgiven myself…and Chi Chi would have probably killed me again" he said, earning a small smile from Videl.
"Do you think he would have let you go if you didn't shoot him?" He questioned, his voice taking on a more serious tone.
Videl cast a glance downwards, "no… I tried asking him why he was doing this and pleaded with him to stop but he just grabbed the lamp and came after me".
"What about if you didn't have the gun, do you think he would have stopped if you tried to talk him out of it?" Goku stared at the young girl as he watched her try and hide her face from him.
Videl felt her well up with hot tears, she turned her face, not wanting to be seen crying in front of Goku. "No… I think he would have killed me in the slowest way he could think of" she choked out quietly.
"Then take some solace in knowing that you gave him a quick and painless death. That's more then he deserved for what he put you through all these years, and what he would have put you through" he said, watching as Videl's shoulders began to shake lightly, her face still hidden from view.
"I know he may have biologically been your father… but no real father would ever do those things to a child they love. It's like with my brother…biologically we may have been related, but no real brother would ever kidnap and try and kill their nephew." He kept his eyes on Videl, waiting for some kind of reaction.
Videl rubbed her eyes lightly and took a deep breath. He was right, Hercule may have been her biological father, but he was never there for her in time of need and did make a number of attempts on her life. She looked over to Goku slowly and was met with weak smile, to which she offered one back.
"It's funny… he knew me my whole life, and we never had an emotional connection. I've only known you for a few years, and I feel like I could tell you everything and not be judged" she said, a light laugh escaping her lips.
"I may not be your biological father, but I do care for you as if you were one of my own." He said, offering a bigger smile to try and comfort the teen. "You're family Videl, and we'll be there for you when you need it".
"You have no idea how glad I am to have you guys in my life" she said, she jumped off the floating lounge chair and got out of the pool. Goku followed her lead and stood beside the petite teen, offering her one of the large plush towels that were on the shelf.
"Thank you… for everything" she said quietly as she came over to give Goku a hug.
Goku nodded as he returned the hug from the petite teen, he did indeed feel like Videl was his unofficial daughter. He hated seeing her so upset, and he hated even more seeing how upset it made Gohan. He was satisfied in knowing he had helped Videl a little.
Videl slowly pulled away from the hug and was met with a concerned look from Goku. "What?" she questioned, unsure of what the problem was.
"Gohan was right… you are getting tiny" he said, earning a blush from Videl.
"I'm not trying to lose weight… my stomach just can't handle any food" she mumbled, wrapping a towel around her small frame.
"You should talk to Bulma, she's probably got something that could help" he offered, watching Videls eyes cast downwards, "there is nothing wrong with seeking help when you need it" he said, putting a hand lightly on her shoulder.
Videl sighed, "I guess" she muttered.
"Gohans really worried about you… I bet he'd feel better if you got something to help you" he offered, noticing her cheer up a little.
"I'll do it for Gohan" she said quietly.
Goku offered a smile, "and maybe a little for you" he said with a light laugh as the two made their way out of the pool room.
Gohan sat down beside Karie at the large table as Drew pulled out his tape recorder.
"So, Gohan, let's get down to business shall we?" Drew looked up and received a nod from Gohan, "what is your relationship to Miss. Satan?"
"She's my girlfriend" he answered, watching as Drew cast a glance down at his notes.
"A little more than a year, almost a year and a half" he answered again.
"And she lives with you… how did that come to be?"
"Yes, she lives with my family. Shortly before Christmas she got sick, when I went to visit her at Hercules house, I found her passed out on a track, he had forced her to run laps while she was fighting a fever; he had also physically assaulted her. After she went to visit him on Boxing Day, she came to my bedroom window soaking wet after being forced to swim laps and was left to sleep in a room with no heat, my family and I convinced her to stay at my family's house for good."
"When did you start to suspect this alleged physical abuse?" Drew questioned, earning a glare from Karie.
"I'm pretty sure if it happens, it's no longer alleged. I had suspected it for a while, she would come to school covered in bruises; on extreme heat alert days she'd be wearing long sleeves sweaters and pants. I tried getting her to open up about it, but she kept blaming it on fighting crimes, even when there was no criminal activity. When she was at my place when she was sick, she was covered in bruises; she confessed to the physical abuse". Gohan could feel himself getting angrier but did his best to remain calm.
"Right, and what happened at the New Year's party?" He questioned, ignoring the glare he was receiving from Karie.
"Hercule broke into Bulmas house and attempted to shoot Videl. One of the bullets grazed Videl's arm, thankfully, the Gold Fighter caught the second bullet before it hit Videl between the eyes" He responded, it felt weird to refer to himself by such a strange title.
"Did you not see the video?" Karie questioned before Drew could ask another question.
"I have… I've decided not to show it in court" he said as Karie smirked.
"And why is that?" she asked, knowing full and well that all it did was help her case.
"We've just decided against it" he answered gruffly.
"Then why do you need to interview the Gold Fighter? He mainly pertained to that video, what other reason do you have to interview him?" Karie questioned, Gohan now taking more interest in this conversation.
"We would like to know how he gets his powers. He caught a bullet, we want to know how he can do that" Drew answered nonchalantly.
"You have no right to expect an answer from that! If that's the only reason, then I will ensure you are not allowed to interview the Gold Fighter. Stick to the case Drew," she pulled out her cell phone, "or I will call judge Novak now" she said, highlighting the judges number to prove her point.
"Fine! This interview is done. I want to see this regeneration chamber" He said annoyed as he grabbed his tape recorder.
Gohan blinked in surprise, not only had he managed to get out of talking with the DA as a super saiyan, but the interview barely lasted 20 minutes. He looked over at Karie who wore a satisfied smirk on her face as she stood up.
"I'm sure one of the kids would be will to prove it works" Karie said, motioning for the two men to follow her out of the room.
Gohan walked behind the two lawyers, he watched Drew as he walked and noticed the angry glares he kept shooting at the back of Karie's head. He couldn't help but let a small smile cross his lips; Videl was indeed in good hands and the glare that Karie was receiving only proved that the district attorney knew his case was barely hanging on by a thread.
He realized he really had no need to follow the two lawyers, but deep down he was looking forward to Karie putting Drew once again in his place. They walked in silence until they reached the room with the regeneration chambers. He noticed that Bulma was standing in front of the doors, rubbing her large belly and offering a small wave.
"I called Trunks to demonstrate the regeneration chamber" Bulma said, earning a curt nod from Drew.
As if on cue, Trunks walked into the room in his torn gi; Drew gasped as he saw the battered and bloody child walk into the room.
"Ugh, Dad and Goten put me through the ringer today" he muttered as he attempted to pop in a dislocated shoulder.
"Good god! What happened to this kid?" Drew exclaimed as he studied the child with the dislocated shoulder and swollen over eye.
"I was sparring with my dad and Goten, dad got me in the shoulder and Goten sucker punched me in the eye" he said nonchalantly as he rubbed his shoulder.
Drew turned to Karie with a stunned expression on his face, "How have they not been charged with child abuse?" he questioned.
Before Karie could retort, a very angry Bulma was right in Drew's face. "Excuse me mister" she said, poking him hard in the chest with her finger. "My husband and I both love our son very much. He wants to train to be a fighter like his dad and like his best friend. He does this on his own, we do not force it on him. Don't you ever dare accuse us of child abuse again" she shouted, causing Drew to pack up into a wall and drop slightly as Bulma stood over top of him, her belly pushing him as she leaned closely.
"Sorry Mrs. Briefs" he muttered out as he stared the angry pregnant woman in the face.
"That's enough Mrs. B, we'll show how this works then you can go make something with pickles on it" Karie said as she laid a hand on Bulmas shoulder.
Bulma blushed as she stepped back and cleared her throat. "Trunks, sweetie, if you could please step into the machine, I'll get it started for you" she said, smiling at her son.
Trunks stared at his mom in disbelief before he shook his head and did as he was told. His dad warned him about mood swings, but he didn't realize just quite the extent they could go until he had witnessed the exchange with the district attorney.
He stepped into the chamber and sat down on the little bench inside. Bulma came and fastened an air mask to his face. She gave him a small wave before she closed the class dome lid in front of him.
Bulma programmed the computer and slowly they could see Trunks close his eyes and fall asleep as the chamber filled up with a liquid. She turned around to the two lawyers and smiled, "he should be done within an hour" she said, smiling at the district attorney who had come in closer, but maintained a fair distance between the pregnant genius.
While Gohan enjoyed watching the district attorney cower as Bulma yelled at him, he did want to bring Videl home. "Hey, Karie?" he questioned, drawing the attention of the other three adults.
"What's up buddy?" Karie questioned, flashing him a smile.
Gohan nervously rubbed the back of his neck, "Could I head out with Videl now?" he questioned.
Karie nodded gently, "go bring her home, I'll either call you guys or have your dad deliver any messages I may have" she said, offering a wave to Gohan as he returned her smile.
"Your mom made food for you guys, go have fun!" Bulma said as she came over and gave Gohan a hug and waved to him as he walked quickly out of the room.
"She's not allowed to leave you know" Drew stated as Gohan was now out of ear shot.
"She's going home, she's allowed to do that" she retorted, narrowing her eyes at Drew.
"Whatever" he stated as he rolled his eyes and took a seat that was in the room. "I hope this doesn't take too long" he muttered.
Videl slumped onto the large bed Bulma had provided her and stared blankly at the ceiling lights and heaved a sigh. She winced a little as she felt her stomach rebelling against the food she ate not too long ago, gently rubbing it in an attempt to gain some form of comfort. After talking with Goku she planned on talking to Bulma about the possibility of taking something that could help calm the knots that were taking over her stomach and possibly get a full meal into her sooner than later.
She heard a soft knock at the door, she was tempted to ignore it and try and sleep a little but felt it was unfair and she should acknowledge whomever it was that was knocking on her door. "Come in" she said loudly, not moving from her spot.
"How are you feeling?" She heard a familiar voice question.
She felt the corners of her lips curl up a little, "ok I guess, went for a swim with your dad" she said, slowly sitting up to meet Gohans gaze.
"You went for a swim with my dad?" he questioned, an eyebrow arched in surprise.
"Well, it was more like I went for a swim, he came and scared the crap out of me then talked some sense in to me" she said, smiling as she recalled the father-daughter like talk she help with Goku.
"Oh yea? What kind of sense did he talk in to you?" he questioned, sitting beside her on the bed.
"He convinced me to talk to Bulma about something for my stomach; he remarked that I was getting tiny and said you and him were both really worried about me" She met Gohans gaze and noticed the small smile he was offering her.
"We have been worried" he said quietly, noticing she averted her gaze now. "I'm glad you've decided to talk with Bulma, I'm sure she'll have something to help you out" he said, offering a bigger smile as he stood up.
"Come on," he said, extending a hand to Videl, "I've got a surprise for you; we're going somewhere" he said, pulling Videl up to her feet as she grasped his hand.
"Where are we going?" she questioned, allowing herself to be pulled by Gohan.
"It's a surprise, but hopefully it'll help cheer you up a bit" he said, holding her hand as they walked through the hallways.
Videl knew attempting to pry information out of Gohan would be useless, when he set his mind to surprising her, he never gave in. She sighed as he continued to lead her through the maze of hallways before she reached the familiar area of the living room.
They walked in and saw a grinning Karie talking with Bulma, both women jumped as they heard a loud slam of the door, both quickly turning to glare at the area the sound came from. "What a jerk" Karie mumbled as she shook her head.
"What happened? Gohan questioned, drawing the attention of the two women, "What was that noise?"
"That, my dear friend, was the sound of us shutting this case" Karie said, a large smile now returning to her face.
"The district attorney was not please to find out my regeneration chambers are everything they're made out to be" Bulma said, a grin now also returning to her lips.
"I'm pretty sure I saw steam coming out of his ears. He's mad because everything he attempted to claim about our case has been proven to be nothing but the truth" Karie said as she moved over to Videl. "This means, so long as the jury doesn't fall prey to Hercules reputation, we've got this in the bag!" she exclaimed as she jumped the teen and gave her a big hug.
"That's awesome!" Videl exclaimed as she hugged the young lawyer. She felt like crying at the thought of this being over sooner than later and prayed that the jury would be smart enough to follow the evidence and not Hercules reputation.
Karie pulled away from the hug as her phone started ringing. She grabbed it and stared at it for a moment before answering, "Hello, Judge Novak….. Today? Already? ...wow…okay, I'll be down within an hour. Sounds good, see you soon!" Karie said as she turned off her phone, meeting the expectant gazes of Gohan, Videl and Bulma.
"Speak of the devil, that was Judge Novak, she wants me to come so we can proceed with jury selection. I best be on my way lovies" she said, bending down to pick up her briefcase.
"Good job today kiddo" she said, offering a smile to Gohan, "And great job Mrs. B putting Drew in his place. I'll be in touch soon" she said as she offered the three a wave and made her way out of the large mansion.
"Well, that's good news" Bulma said, offering the two teens a smile to break the silence in the room.
"No kidding… Bulma I believe Videl wanted to ask you something before we go" Gohan said, nudging Videl causing her to blush a little.
"What is it sweetie?" She questioned, watching Videl cast her eyes downwards.
"Would….would you have something to help calm my stomach?" she mumbled, slowly looking up as she watch Bulma greet her with a smile.
"Don't be embarrassed to ask for help hun, but yes, I think I have something that will help. Give me a second, I had brought it down earlier" she said as she ran out of the room.
"Was that so hard?" Gohan questioned with a small smile.
"Shut up" she said, rolling her eyes and sticking her tongue out at him.
Almost as soon as she left, Bulma was back in the room with the two teenagers. "That was fast" Gohan remarked as Bulma took a deep inhale and adjusted her short hair back into a proper position.
"Just because I'm pregnant doesn't mean that I don't exercise" she said, flexing a muscle to prove her point.
"You look awesome Bulma, you'd never knew you were pregnant from behind. The belly give it away though" Videl said as Bulma grinned with pride and rubbed her growing belly.
"Well thank you sweetie. Now, take one of these before every meal, they're fast acting and should work. Give them a try for a week, that way you've got them in your system by the start of the trial…" she trailed off as she noticed Videl avoiding her gaze.
She grasped Videls hand gently and pushed the pill bottle into her hand, "Karie has your best interest in mind, you've still got a few days before this starts then Karie will win this for you. Try and relax till then" she said, Videl slowly looking up to meet her smile.
"I'll try", she said quietly, Bulma pulled her in for a hug which Videl was happy to return.
"Let's go say good bye to everyone, then we'll head out" Gohan said, watching as the two women pulled apart.
"That should certainly help you relax" Bulma said as she pulled her shirt back down over her swollen belly. "I'm pretty sure most of them were in the kitchen" Bulma said, grasping Videls hand and leading her towards the kitchen.
The two teens said their good byes to everyone and Videl thanks them for their continuing support of her and all their generosity and being there for her during the whole ordeal with Hercule. She gave all of them a hug, even Vegeta gave her a small pat on the back as she made her rounds and said good bye to everyone.
Chi Chi handed Gohan a number of capsules and gave her son a hug, "have fun sweetie!" she said, moving to hug Videl.
"We've given Karie your cell phone numbers, I'll instant transmission if we need you quickly" Goku said, giving his son a hug before moving to hug Videl as well.
"Thanks guys, we'll see you soon!" Gohan said, grasping Videls hand and offering a final wave before moving towards the backyard.
"I figure it'll be safer to take off out here" Gohan said, noticing Videls questioning look. He did a quick pocket check to make sure he had all the capsules. He bent down a picked Videl up bridal style, earning a surprised yelp from Videl.
"I can fly you know" she questioned, settling into Gohans arms.
"I know, but this way it's more of a surprise when we get to where we're going" He said, slowly lifting up into the air.
Videl heaved a sigh, knowing arguing was pointless, "alright, let's do this" she said, watching Gohans grin grow as he quickly took off in the sky.
Vide looked around as her surrounds quickly flew past her. It always amazed her the speed Gohans and the other saiyans possessed when they flew. She always thought she could fly fast, but it was a totally differently experience when Gohan was going close to his top speed.
She noticed that the grey blurs of buildings was now turning into green blurs, she felt Gohan then turn her head slightly so she wasn't looking forward at where they were going.
"No peeking!" he said with a laugh as he felt her shake her head as she averted her gaze.
She felt Gohan land, "close your eyes!" he said as he slowly lowered her feet on to the ground. "Ok, now look!" he said, big grin on his face as he watched her slowly open her eyes.
Videl felt a big grin come to her face as she studied her surroundings. "We're home" she said as she studied the dome like building.
"I thought you may be able to relax a little here before the trial. You know, away from the media and such; I thought maybe we could go for a swim or relax in a hot spring. My mom made us food too so it's all taken care of" he said as Videl turned and jumped into his arms.
"I missed being here" she said quietly as she continued to hug Gohan tightly. "I feel relaxed already, even the air up here is calming" she said as she slowly pulled away and looked at all the green surroundings, listening to the birds chirp happily. "It's good to be home".
"Let's go for a swim, what do you say?" he questioned, moving to unlock the door so they could go into the house.
Videl walked into the house and felt her smile grow larger, "it even smells relaxing" she said, taking a deep breath, smelling the air of the house.
"Home sweet home" Gohan mused as he put the capsules in the fridge and stretched. "How bout that swim?"
The rest of the day flew by, Gohan and Videl went for a swim, but cut it short as the water was a little chilly, they warmed up dinner and enjoyed it by candle light. Gohan made sure Videl took her medication beforehand and was satisfied when she finished a plate of food without the issue of stomach pains afterwards. Our teens were now just coming back from a dip in a hot spring, Videl was upstairs changing into something warmer and Gohan was getting the fire place set up to help warm them up.
Videl came downstairs in one of Gohans old sweatshirts and a pair of pj pants. "Man…I forgot how cold it gets here at night" she muttered as she held the sweatshirt closer to her and moved to stand in front of the now roaring fire.
"Yea, we got spoiled at Bulmas… but that's ok, I've got a nice big fire going" He said, moving away to sit on the couch.
"It's only been like two weeks, but I missed being here" Videl said as she heaved a sigh and relaxed on the couch beside Gohan.
"It'll be over soon" Gohan said quietly as he leaned down and kissed the top of her head.
Videl only nodded, she was unsure of what she wanted to say and quite frankly she didn't want to ruin the moment. She relaxed in the plush couch and rested her head on Gohans shoulder. The two of them fell into a comfortable silence, both staring off into the dancing flames in front of them.
Before either of them knew it, they could feel their eyes getting heavier and heavier and knew it would be time to turn in soon. Gohan leaned up, jarring Videl out of her sleepy stupor slightly, "Think we should go to bed?"
Videl leaned up and yawned and stretched her arms above her head, "I think that may be a great idea" she muttered, turning her attention away from the fire.
"Where would you like to sleep?" Gohan asked as he moved to put the fire out and turn on the lights.
"I'll try my bed tonight, I'm feeling better than I have the past little while so I'll give it a go" She said, standing up as Gohan finished putting out the fire.
"Are you sure? You're welcome to sleep in my bed if you like" He checked to make sure the doors were locked beforehand then moved to turn off all the lights in the downstairs.
"I feel more relaxed here as opposed to the city and my dad was never able to find me out here. I'm going to give it a shot, if I feel uncomfortable or if I get a nightmare, I'll come and see you" She said, leaning up against him and lightly brushing her lips against his.
"Ok, my door is always open if you need me" he said, matching the quietness of her voice, offering a few kisses of his own.
"Night baby… I love you" he whispered between light kisses.
"Night sweetheart… I love you" she replied, kissing him one last time before slowly pulling herself away from him.
They gave each other a small wave before they moved into their respective rooms and closed the doors.
Videl exhaled a deep sigh as she turned on her night lamp in her room. She studied her surroundings and couldn't help but smile; pictures littered her walls of past events. She looked over them for a few minutes, happy memories of her times with the Son family members, her mom and the whole big group. She was so glad she was able to call the Sons house her home, Gohans family had welcomed into their home and hearts so openly, she was unsure how she would have been able to deal with anything that had occurred over the past two years without their love and support; especially during the time frame she and Gohan had been dating.
She laid down on her bed and grabbed the teddy bear Goten had given her for Christmas and hugged it tightly as she curled up under the covers. She inhaled deeply and felt herself instantly relax. She turned off her light and allowed her body to relax completely, she smiled as she stared at the ceiling, she felt so overwhelmed to finally be back in a place that she called home.
She loved Bulma and her house, but the Sons house was just so welcoming, it was a home, her home to be exact. In her time of need she was so appreciative of the fact that Gohan felt that this would help her relax; everything about this place, the mountains, the tall green grass, the clear lakes and all the animals, it was something out of a fairy tale and she wouldn't trade it for anything.
She let her heavy eyes close, a small smile still on her lips. She exhaled deeply and felt herself start to drift off to blissful unconsciousness, forgetting for a brief period that the trial of the century was going to begin in only two short days.
Again, I'm soooo sorry about the delay! As mentioned, been kinda down lately and sometimes it's hard getting myself motivated to do anything when I get in these emotional slumps.
Anyways, the trial is coming up so we'll see what my mind can create for it!
I hope you enjoyed this chapter! I hope to read a few reviews, I love hearing from you guys!