AN: This is a little more risqué in a few places than most of my stuff, but I figure that's okay. This is a great song, and I hope you enjoy the story I've woven around it. I don't own DBZ or this song. Akira Toriyama and Lorrie Morgan do. So there.
Something in Red
"Oh!" Erasa squealed, throwing herself towards one of the many racks that crowded the floor of the department store. Videl, Bulma, and ChiChi followed with good-natured exasperation. After all, they'd only been putting up with the blonde girl's impulsiveness all day.
The four women were on a mission for what was an extremely important item. At least, it was extremely important to three of them. One of them wasn't acting too thrilled about what they were searching for. Of course, she was kind of excited, but at the same time, it would have been a whole lot easier if the other three weren't carrying on as they were prone to do.
"What did we find this time?" Bulma asked, peering at the rack.
The bubbly blonde reappeared a minute later, holding the article of clothing that had so captured her attention. "Take a look at this little number!" She held it up in front of her and spun around, pretending to model it for the approval of her shopping comrades.
ChiChi raised an eyebrow and smiled. "Well…that will definitely get somebody's attention."
Bulma nodded her agreement. "After all, red is the color of love."
"Good gods!" Videl protested, blushing furiously. She closed her eyes, but the fiery color of the garment burned right through her eyelids. "I could never wear that!"
"Why not?" Bulma countered, taking the offending piece of clothing from Erasa and holding it up in front of the raven-haired girl. "You've got the figure for this kind of thing, and besides, think about what we're shopping for here." A devious grin crossed the woman's face. "This is for your honeymoon. We wouldn't want poor Gohan to be disappointed, would we?"
Videl blushed even brighter. "Well…I…that?"
"Try it on!" ChiChi ordered, and forcibly ushered the protesting Videl into a fitting room. "Don't come out until you try it!"
Videl obeyed, afraid not to. Then she stared in the mirror. Well…that was interesting, to say the least. It was pretty, but she had the feeling that she would have liked it better if she wasn't being forced to wear it. And truthfully, it didn't look half bad. But the thought of somebody seeing her wearing that—a person of the male persuasion, no less—made her face heat up again.
This is the last time I ever let those three take me shopping again, she vowed, changing back into her own clothing. Besides, I didn't think ChiChi would be encouraging this…oh well.she vowed, changing back into her own clothing.
Erasa, Bulma, and ChiChi waited patiently outside the door. Finally, it opened, and Videl stepped out, back in her normal street clothes. The hanger bearing the red lingerie she had been loathe to try on was in her hand. Her face was as red as the garment.
"Well?" Erasa bubbled eagerly.
"…s'okay…" Videl muttered. "…why me?"
"You're getting married, Videl," Bulma said firmly. "And you have a honeymoon to go on. I'm very sure you know what is supposed to happen on the wedding night."
"Then it's settled!" ChiChi declared. "With this little number, I'll have grandchildren in no time!"
Videl put her face in her hands as the other three women dragged her towards the cash register. In spite of herself, though, Videl had to bite back a tiny smile at the thought of what was to come.
Only one week left.
The delicious smell of food wafted up, filling the room. Goten and Trunks looked at their mothers with entreating expressions, but their patented sad puppy dog eyes failed to draw a suitable reaction. With a sigh of defeat, they returned to what they had been doing before: sitting there, drooling, and casting longing glances at the buffet that was calling their names. But they didn't dare do anything. After all, they had already gotten in trouble at the actual rehearsal.
Hey, it wasn't their fault that the window was so breakable!
Around the room, the adults were engaged in lively conversation, waiting for the last of the wedding party to arrive—namely, the bride and groom, along with the maid of honor and the best man—so that the dinner could commence.
Finally, the doors opened, and Erasa bounded in. "We're here!"
Behind her was Piccolo, looking every inch his usual stoic self. He merely rolled his eyes at the blonde girl and took a seat. Everyone was absolutely baffled at how in the name of the seven mad gods Gohan had managed to convince his old teacher to be a part of the wedding. But there he was, good ol' Mr. Piccolo, playing Gohan's best man.
And finally, the bride and groom themselves, arm in arm.
"They look so young…so happy…so in love…" Bulma sighed dreamily.
"And so irrational…" Krillen added, mocking the blue-haired woman's expression. She made a face at him, then grinned a little at the good-natured bantering. "But seriously, they look good," he added as they took their seats of honor at a table with their parents and friends. Goku, ChiChi, Piccolo, Erasa, and Hercule, of course. And, at Videl's insistence, the housekeeper at the Satan mansion was also at the table. Videl refused to go to the dinner unless Hannah was there, which was a request easily granted. After all, Hannah had been the closest thing Videl had ever had to a mother, and therefore was not to be left out. (AN: Hannah's an original character, for those of you who don't know. I've used her in one other story, and she's a really cool character.)
Krillen was right about the happy couple looking good. Gohan looked wonderful, of course, in khakis and a black turtleneck. Videl was wearing a little number that she definitely had not picked out herself. Actually, the outfit had Erasa stamped all over it. An emerald green sheath dress under a white cardigan was most likely not the sort of outfit Videl would have selected for herself, but it looked absolutely wonderful on her.
"Can we eat now?" Goten and Trunks started whining loudly, earning several stares from guests around the room, and whispered reprimands from their mothers.
Gohan grinned. "It seems we have a request for dinner to begin. So…dig in!"
Still, ChiChi and Bulma held their respective sons and mates back until everyone else had gotten a plateful. Only then did they unleash the Saiyan appetites on the unsuspecting food. Needless to say, the poor caterer finally understood why the food order for this fiasco had read servings for one hundred and fifty for a dinner of about thirty five.
Once everyone's appetites were sated—or in the case of the Saiyans, merely whetted—the children squirmed out of boredom while the adults engaged in more lively conversation.
While Gohan was distracted by something his father was saying, Erasa poked Videl under the table. Once she had her friend's attention, she leaned over and whispered, "By this time tomorrow, you'll be Mrs. Son Videl. And a couple hours from now tomorrow night, you know where you'll be."
Videl's face turned the color of the strawberries that had topped her desert. "Erasa, knock it off!"
The blonde giggled furiously, not noticing that Piccolo was giving them weird looks.
"Oh, when you get married, Erasa," Videl muttered, 'I'll be waiting."
Hercule chose that moment to stand up and raise his glass. Naturally, every eye in the room immediately gravitated to the man with the unmistakable afro.
"I'd like to propose a toast to my darling daughter, Videl, who is getting married tomorrow," he said proudly to a chorus of 'ayes' and the sound of glasses clinking together. "And I'd like to remind my future son-in-law that he'd better watch his step, or I'll rip him apart."
Gohan somehow managed to twist his face into a convincing mask of horror before he grinned and threw Hercule a wink. The World Champion smiled back and sat back down.
Videl sent a silent prayer of thanks to whatever deity happened to be up there. She was unmeasurably grateful for the fact that since the days when she and Gohan had first started dating, her father had gradually started to warm up to him. By the time Gohan (ever the gentleman) had asked Hercule for permission to marry Videl, the two could almost have been considered friends.
The raven-haired girl sighed happily, and her fingers found Gohan's under the table. He gave her hand a squeeze, and threw her an easy smile.
She smiled back. Tomorrow was the big day.
"Can I look now?" Videl asked impatiently.
"No!" Erasa shook her head. "I want to see your face when you see how we did." The blonde straightened up and tilted her head to one side, sizing up her own work. Then she resumed what she had been doing before, dabbing at Videl's face with every possible cosmetic item known to mankind.
Bulma came scurrying back into the room and immediately moved around behind Videl. "Okay, let's finish this hair. Thank Kami you grew your hair back out."
Videl sighed in exasperation. She had been sitting there in her wedding dress for Kami knew how long, letting her maid of honor experiment with her makeup. Then Bulma had appeared, and had immediately whipped out a curling iron and hair spray and started playing with her hair. Her face felt like a mask, and her hair felt heavy. And her nerves were already stretched to the breaking point over pre-wedding jitters, so this definitely was not helping things.
Finally, Erasa sat back and grinned. "Bulma!" she gestured quickly, having long since grown accustomed to addressing the Capsule Corporation heiress on an informal basis. "Take a look. Did I do good, or did I do good?"
Bulma's blue eyes were dancing with glee. "You done good, kid. What do you think of the hair? Too much, not enough?"
"Perfect!" Erasa squealed; her own eyes were taking on a dreamy quality to them. She clapped her hands and started jumping up and down. "And now, the veil!"
Bulma all but danced across the room and gently lifted the headpiece from its perch atop a mannequin head. Then she carried it back across the room and placed it atop Videl's hair. She fiddled with it for about thirty seconds, then stepped back to take a better look at her handiwork.
Suprisingly, she frowned a little. "It's missing something…wait…" Bulma raised a brow, and a speculative look came into her eyes. "Videl, do you know what Gohan's favorite flower is?"
Videl searched her memory, then finally said, "I think he told me once that he likes daisies because they're happy. I think."
"Don't think, know. You're right," Bulma grinned. "And we just happen to have a few." She plucked a few daisies from a vase that was sitting on a table in the brideroom. She broke the stems with her hands to a certain length, and then disappeared behind Videl once again.
The raven-haired woman sighed and kept herself occupied by watching Erasa make some touch-ups to her own hair and makeup. Videl also took a brief second to admire the bridesmaids' dresses. What had possessed her to choose red was beyond her, but it was definitely not a choice she regretted.
"What do you think?" Bulma asked Erasa, receiving a nod and a smile in response. Finally, after another eternity of waiting while Bulma poked things into her scalp, she finally heard the words she'd been praying for since this whole fiasco had started nearly two hours ago. "Okay, you can look now!"
Videl stood up from her perch on a cushioned stool, and slowly turned around to look in the full length mirrors along that wall, and see what they had done to her.
Her breath caught in her throat, and she barely noticed the insanely large grins that were plastered across the faces of both Erasa and Bulma. "Is that…me?"
Indeed it was, but not the Satan Videl that most people saw every day. Her dress was simple enough, made of white satin and lace, cut modestly, and highlighted a figure that many women would have killed to have. Her makeup was, surprisingly enough, fairly light, and only served to accent and bring out her natural features. She honestly had thought that after that much time getting sponged and dabbed at by Erasa, there would have been a lot more junk smeared across her face, but hey, she wasn't complaining.
Her hair was piled on top of her head in a flattering tumble of curls, a few of which spiraled down to frame her face. The veil, which was as simple as the dress, was hanging down her back at the moment, and Bulma had managed to create almost a crown of daisies around it.
"And you were complaining," Erasa teased.
"Mom!" Trunks' voice came in from the door. Seconds later, the young man himself appeared.
"Trunks! This is the brideroom!" Bulma admonished her son. "Translation? Estrogen zone!"
But the teenaged demi-Saiyan wasn't listened. He smiled charmingly at Videl. "Wow. You look really nice." Then he held up an instant camera and snapped a picture before turning and racing out of the room. "I got it!"
Bulma ran to the door and slammed it shut. "Damn," she muttered. "I bet he's a spy. Gohan's not supposed to see you until you walk down the aisle!"
"Oh well," Videl replied dreamily, still looking at herself in the mirror. She hadn't even looked this good at the prom, and that had been amazing!
A knock at the door caught everyone's attention. Bulma, who was closest, opened it a crack, allowing the wedding coordinator to poke her head in. "Ten minutes, sweetie. You look beautiful."
Videl felt a little blush rise in her cheeks. "Thank you."
"By the way," the woman who had put the wedding together leaned a little further into the room. "He looks fantastic. Wow!"
Erasa squealed with delight.
Hercule picked that moment to appear at the door. "Is she ready?"
"Just about," Bulma replied. "We'll be just one more minute. Erasa, could Videl and I have just a minute please?"
Feigning a pout, the blonde exited into the hallway.
"What's up?" Videl asked.
"You're nervous as hell, aren't you?"
"Me? No…no way."
"Your hands are shaking so hard you can't even pick up your own bouquet," Bulma pointed out, chuckling as Videl tried to grasp the bundle of flowers. "Don't worry. It's going to be fine."
"What if it's not right?" Videl asked, finally allowing her uneasiness to reflect itself on her face. "How do I know if this is the right thing?"
"You'll know," Bulma said firmly, giving the younger woman a quick hug. "Trust me, it's right. But if you have any doubts at all, just wait until you get to the altar. If it's not right, you'll know."
"All right…" Videl sighed, looking a little more at ease. "I'd better see Daddy now."
"Just one more thing," Bulma reached up and lowered Videl's veil over her face. Then she nodded. "Now you're ready."
Bulma exited, and Hercule entered, actually looking quite nice in a standard black tuxedo.
"Hi, Daddy," Videl said happily, suddenly feeling like she was seven years old again and had just gotten a brand new outfit. Feeling giddy and childish, she spun around a few times to model her ensemble. "Do I look pretty, Daddy?"
For probably the first time in his life, Hercule Satan looked close to tears. "My baby girl is all grown up! And now she's leaving me…"
"Oh, Daddy, don't be silly," Videl admonished gently, giving her father a hug. "You couldn't get rid of me if you tried. Now," she straightened his jacket and dusted off the corsage that was pinned to his lapel, "are you ready to walk me down the aisle?"
With a heavy sigh, Hercule nodded. Then he hugged her. "I love you, sweet pea."
"Love you too, Daddy," she replied.
He pulled back and offered her his arm. "Shall we?"
"Let's go. I'm ready."
They followed the wedding party out towards the door that led into the church. Through the glass panes in the door, Videl could see Gohan and Piccolo standing at the end of the aisle. She was a little amused to see that Gohan seemed incapable of standing still. He was pacing back and forth, and talking to Piccolo at the same time. The Namekian warrior looked, surprisingly enough, mildly amused about something. Probably Gohan's nervousness.
She looked down at Marron and Bra, who were serving as flower girls, and Goten, who, as the youngest, had been dubbed the ring bearer. The others were lined up, ready to go.
This is it, she took a deep breath and did a quick double check. Everything was ready. She reaffirmed her grip on her father's arm, and took another deep, calming breath. Here we go.she took a deep breath and did a quick double check. Everything was ready. She reaffirmed her grip on her father's arm, and took another deep, calming breath.
The wedding march began to play, and the procession started. First Bra and Marron, dropping their flower petals around the aisle, and earning numerous "awwws" from the guests. Then Goten, carrying the pillow with the rings. Then the bridesmaids and groomsmen. Then Erasa by herself, since Piccolo had flat out refused to walk down the aisle. And finally, it was her turn.
She was holding her bouquet in one hand, and clutching at her father's arm with the other. This was it. The guests stood, and the organist began playing "Here Comes the Bride."
Videl heard several exclamations of things like "oh, how beautiful," and "lucky guy." She strongly suspected that the latter comment had been made by Sharpner, who had in fact been invited. But she didn't pay too much attention to them. Her focus was on the young man waiting at the end of the aisle.
Gohan looked just about as nervous as she felt, but she felt a rush of elation when his jaw nearly dropped at her appearance. But then again, he wasn't doing too bad himself. He looked absolutely immaculate in a white tux, white shoes, the whole nine yards.
When they reached the end of the aisle, Hercule gave his daughter one last hug before stepping back and taking his seat next to Hannah. Never one to be unprepared, she promptly handed him a spare handkerchief. On the other side of the aisle, Goku was grinning from ear to ear, while ChiChi was already dabbing at her eyes.
They took each other's hands and she looked happily into his eyes.
:Ready: he asked in her mind. It was the first time they'd spoken all day, having gone along with the age-old superstition that the bride and groom seeing each other before the wedding was bad luck. They had even agreed not to have a mental conversation, though it had been mighty tempting. Especially considering that whenever Videl got nervous about anything, Gohan was the one she had always gone to for a sounding board.
:I am. You:
:Ready. Do you have something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue:
:Yup. New dress, antique necklace, borrowed flowers in my hair, and blue eyes. Let's go.:
His response was laughter, flavored like sweet, crisp apples.
Then the preacher began speaking, and their attention was elsewhere. When asked, they spoke their vows softly, never taking their eyes from each other. She could hear her father and Hannah crying when he slipped the ring onto her finger. And when the preacher finally said, "I now pronounce you man and wife. You may kiss the bride," they were more than ready to seal the deal.
The terrible, terrible sound echoed down the hallway and into the bedroom. Videl pulled the pillow over her head in an attempt to block out the awful noise, but it was all in vain.
Pan was awake again, and with a true Saiyan's appetite, she was hungry again.
But Gohan, who probably qualified for the Best Father in the Universe Award, had gotten up the last three times, Videl decided it was her turn.
In fact, he was already getting up, but she put a hand on his shoulder. "Go back to sleep."
He didn't protest, and simply fell backwards onto his pillow again. Seconds later, Videl could hear him snoring softly. Smiling to herself at how he was still so cute when he was asleep, she tiptoed down the hallway into her daughter's bedroom.
Son Pan was screaming her head off in a successful attempt to draw the attention of her parents. Videl leaned over the edge of the crib and smiled at her daughter. "What's the matter, Panny? Are you hungry again?" At the responsive shriek, she nodded. "Just like your father. Always hungry."
Scooping up the infant from the crib, Videl made her way down to the kitchen and easily located a bottle. It didn't take too terribly long to warm the milk, but to a very hungry baby, sixty seconds is approximately equal to five years. And like her Saiyan grandfather, patience was definitely not her strongest virtue. It didn't help any that she was tired and cranky.
Finally, Videl handed her daughter a bottle, and chuckled at how quickly Pan stopped crying and like a true Saiyan devoted her attention to the promise of food that had been laid before her. The bottle was empty in under two minutes, and Videl quickly refilled it for her hungry daughter.
The raven-haired woman took a seat at the kitchen table, cradling her daughter in her arms. "Well, Pan, you are definitely a Son. The appetite alone says that."
The tiny girl yawned in response and snuggled closer to her mother.
"You are so beautiful," Videl sighed, a mixture of tiredness and happiness. It was so peaceful to just sit here, holding her precious baby, and not have to worry about anything. It was moments like these when she could just relax and think.
And right now, her thoughts strayed to her husband. Gohan was a loving husband and a great father. But true to his training as a child, he was a definite workaholic. His childhood had taught him never to leave things undone, and that carried through to his work.
Videl understood that perfectly. After all, was it only a few years ago that she had been so intent on discovering the identity and secrets of the new boy in her class at school and the amazingly powerful, if slightly goofy, superhero who had started taking over her job? She was just as driven as he was.
But sometimes…sometimes she wished he would just forget about work for a while. Sometimes she wished they could go back to the days right after their wedding. The world had been their playground, and like two children, they had enjoyed it to the fullest—the freedom, the fun, everything. Being out in the world with no parents and no real responsibilities had been the most unbelievable experience she had ever been through. Yes, there had been…other aspects of those days on their honeymoon that had been equally enjoyable. Not that those things weren't enjoyable now, but something about those first weeks had been a magical experience beyond dreaming. And then she had gotten pregnant, and little by little things started to change. When Pan was born, it went from changing little by little to changing lots by lots.
Maybe that was what happened when you got married and had kids, though. You were too tired from running around, changing diapers and getting up in the middle of the night, to do much else. But Videl didn't want to believe that.
Maybe when you start sleeping through the night, she said silently to her daughter.
With a soft sigh, Videl got to her feet and walked back up the stairs, down the hall, and into the baby's room. Gently, she replaced her now-sleeping child in the crib and selected one of the many baby blankets they had been given as gifts. Finally, she selected one that had come from one of her father's business associates—a strongheaded woman who had never believed in gender roles. To prove her point, the baby blanket was a beautiful shade of light blue.
Videl covered Pan with the soft blanket, careful not to wake her, and lingered for a moment more, just to admire the sleeping beauty in the crib. Then, finally feeling the exhaustion, she returned to her own room and crawled back into her bed.
No sooner was she under the blankets did Gohan mumble, "All clear?"
She smiled. "All clear."
"Kay…" he muttered.
Videl lay back in bed for a moment. Then, almost as an afterthought, she leaned over her husband and whispered into his ear, "Love you."
"Love…you…too…" he whispered back, though fatigue slurred his words together.
Videl sighed happily and rolled over to go back to sleep.
The light was on in the den, and Videl could see the shadow of someone moving around in the room. In the living room, the clock chimed twelve times. Midnight. She tied the belt of her bathrobe around her waist and sighed. This was becoming more and more typical.
Slowly, she walked down the hall and stopped in the doorway. Gohan was alternating between sitting at his desk and paging through books, and pacing around the room with a notepad in his hand, muttering to himself. A pencil was perpetually sticking out from behind his ear, and he looked exhausted and frazzled. But that was only logical, since he'd been in there since about eight.
"Gohan?" she said softly from the doorway.
He actually jumped, which she found to be slightly amusing, and turned to look at her with a mixture of surprise and confusion written across his face. "Oh. Videl, I thought you were in bed."
"I was," she replied, sauntering into the room. "Couldn't sleep."
It was silent in the house, and dark except for this little room. Pan was over at Capsule Corporation, spending the night with her best friend Bra. Gohan smiled to himself as he recalled the threat he had received from Vegeta, that if Pan was as loud and rambunctios as Goten had been at that age, Gohan was a dead man. Not that the Saiyan Prince would ever carry through on such a threat, of course. He just enjoyed making them on occasion, just to make sure everyone still remembered who he was.
Gohan was pacing now, so Videl took his chair behind the desk. She rested her elbows on the desktop and watched him walk around. "You look exhausted."
"I gotta get this done," he replied.
"You're a workaholic, and you know it," she reprimanded gently.
"Guilty," Gohan admitted with a weak smile. "But hey, nobody's perfect."
Videl watched him for a few more minutes before she spoke again. "Gohan, it'll still be here in the morning. Your work isn't going to grow legs and run off while you're sleeping."
He looked sheepish all of a sudden. "I'm sorry. I know I get carried away with this."
"Your work is important to you," Videl replied. "I understand that."
He glanced back down at the notepad in his hand. It was then that Videl made her decision. She stood up, walked around the desk, and pulled the notebook from his fingers. She set it on the desk beside the books, and turned to grace him with a measuring glare.
"This is an order, isn't it?" Gohan looked right back.
She nodded. Then a mischievous grin crossed her face, and she hoisted herself up to sit on top of the desk. From this perch, she looked at him mysteriously. "Hey, Gohan…"
He looked blank. "Yeah?"
Videl continued to look enigmatic. "You know…Pan's not here…"
Realization started to dawn. "Yeah?"
"Remember that…ah, little outfit I wore on our wedding night?" she teased.
Gohan raised an eyebrow, finally seeing where this was going. "Yeah?"
For a scholar, he sure has a great vocabulary, Videl thought to herself, but she didn't say that out loud. She slid off the desk and moved slowly towards him. "Guess what I have on under my robe?"
Gohan smiled briefly, then put a serious face on. His professor face, she called it, it was the expression he used when scolding unruly students in the classroom. "Are you suggesting—"
He didn't get any further before Videl pressed her lips against his.
And after that, they didn't need words.
AN: Like I said, a little more risqué than most of my other stuff. But it was actually a lot of fun to write. I hope you enjoyed it. I actually sat down and just typed this up on a whim. I have another story that I've been writing on and off for about two months now, and I'm going to finish it, come hell or high water. I've got a couple things in the works, so keep your eyes peeled. Until then, ciao!