AN: *blink* *blink* Hello? Is anyone still out there? Hello? Okay, good. I apologize for the delay in the updating. Truthfully, it's been a cross between not having time, and not being motivated. But here we are, with a brand, spankin' new chapter, featuring an event that many people have said they would like to see happen in this little tale o' mine.

And plus, guess what? Hannah's back! For those of you who don't know or don't remember, Hannah is an original character of mine. She is the housekeeper at the Satan mansion, Videl's surrogate mother, and one awesome old lady. You'll like her. Promise.

Anyway, I don't own DBZ. Shucks.

Chapter Fifteen–Dragon Tales

"Hmm...I could have sworn he lived around here somewhere..." Gohan murmured, his eyes scanning the landscape below.

He was searching for an old friend, someone he hadn't seen in ages. By all accounts, this friend shouldn't have been this difficult to find. But he just couldn't locate the being he was so carefully seeking.

The forest below him was a seemingly endless sea of green leaves with very few breaks in the foliage. And for the life of him, Gohan couldn't see through it. Finally, he gave up and swept down, breaking through the canopy and landing easily in the middle of the forest.

Frowning, the chibi peered around, trying to look through the trees for his elusive quarry. Unfortunately, he had not been blessed with X-ray vision, so it wasn't possible for him to look through the trees. But Gohan wasn't about to give up. Not yet, anyway.

The sound of a twig snapping nearby reached his ears, and he whirled around to face the sound. There was something out there. Something nearby, just out of sight in those bushes over there.

Gohan could almost hear the theme song from Jaws playing in the background. Truthfully, the moment had all the makings of a great shot from a horror film. Suddenly, the shadows cast by the trees seemed longer, darker, and far more menacing. And suddenly, Gohan felt an awful lot like the seven year old he appeared to be.

Then he shook himself from the fearful stupor he had managed to lapse into, and mentally smacked himself upside the head. Get a freakin' grip! What's it gonna do to you, whatever it is? You're Saiyan, for crying out loud! Just beat it up!

He lowered himself inot a defensive stance in preparation for a fight with whatever monster was about to come running at him. It was still there; he could hear the foliage rustling.

Suddenly, a blur came and hit Gohan head on.

From behind.

The chibi went flying headfirst and face first into the dirt floor of the forest. The thing that had hit him, something heavy and large, ended up sitting on his back.

"Ack!" Gohan yelped as he pulled his face out of the dirty and spat out a generous mouthful of sod, leaves, and twigs. Then he looked towards the bushes he had been studying so carefully. There was still a rustling sound coming from them.

Two squirrels jumped out of the bush and scampered off, headed for parts unknown.

Gohan groaned; then his attention was returned to the being sitting heavily on his back, slowly pushing him further and further down into the dirt. There was already a healthy imprint of the small body in the earth, and it was slowly but surely getting deeper.

And as far as Gohan was concerned, getting buried alive was not an option.

It didn't take but a small exercise of his Saiyan strength to relieve himself of the unwanted burden. Ki was such a wonderful tool for sending objects into flight. He heard whatever it was hit the ground nearby with a loud, heavy thump. A very heavy thump. A very, very heavy thump. A very, very, very heavy thump. A very, very…ah, you get the idea.

Once the ground had stopped shaking from the thing's imprompt landing, Gohan jumped to his feet and whirled around, dropping reflexively into a flawless stance. But he relaxed the instant he realized who—or rather, what—he was face to face with.

"Icarus!" he cried joyfully, lunging forward and throwing his arms around the dragon's lavender-scaled neck. "It's great to see you again!"

The thing was that when Gohan grabbed his friend's neck, he had to jump several feet in the air. His faithful friend, good ol' Haiya Dragon, was now more than twice as tall as Gohan was at his current size. Compared to when Gohan had first met him, right now, the dragon was huge!

"It really has been a long time," Gohan muttered, dangling precariously from the dragon's neck. Then Icarus dipped his head until Gohan's feet touched the ground, and the chibi let go, landing easily.

The dragon kept his head lowered, though, and gestured coaxingly with one yellow claw towards its back while looking entreatingly at Gohan.

After a few seconds, it clicked. "You want me to get on your back?" the chibi asked, a look of sheer and utter delight crossing his young face. When Icarus bobbed his head up and down in affirmation, Gohan laughed and scrambled up onto the dragon's back—yet another reminder of just how much time had passed since he had last visited his childhood friend. "All right! Let's go!"

With no further ado, Icarus spread his now-long, yellow wings and shot joyfully into the azure sky, carrying a thoroughly happy child on his back.

It felt like they spent hours up in the sky, racing and flying together, just like in the old days of Gohan's first time through childhood. Gohan also made sure to fill his friend in on everything that had happened lately, from Goten's wish to the pranks on Vegeta. The dragon had seemed to share Gohan's sadness at the story of his predicament with Videl and the prom, but had perked back up when Gohan suggested another race. By the time Gohan professed exhaustion, the sun was just beginning its downward trek across the sky, towards the horizon.

"Whew!" Gohan wiped perspiration from his forehead with the back of his hand. Having fun was hard work! "I'll stop by again soon, and we can play again. Promise."

Just then, the Voice of Doom came echoing across the heavens. Thunder crashed and lightning flared in its wake. Gohan just groaned.

"Son Gohan, come home right now! Who knows what kind of germs that dragon has?"

Gohan shook his head. "Not again!"

Then he noticed that Icarus had also reacted to the appearance of the disembodied Voice of Doom. The dragon had his head cocked to one side, and was regarding Gohan with a certain degree of confusion; the look seemed to say, "How does she do that?"

"I have no idea," Gohan shrugged.

Apparently satisfied with the explanation (or lack thereof), the dragon's expression changed then, to the look of someone who had just been mortally insulted.

The demi-Saiyan giggled. "Don't worry. I know you're not diseased." He turned. "But I'd better go before I get in trouble. See you soon!"

With a wave, he shot off towards home, leaving his childhood friend behind.

It didn't take long for the little house in the moutains to come into view. Gohan swooped down a little closer, but didn't land right away. He did little circles in the air, trying to burn off a little energy. But finally, he zoomed in and managed a masterful two and a half somersault landing. Goten, who was watching from the front door, applauded.

As he scurried up to his room, Gohan called towards the kitchen to let his mother know that he was home, lest she come after him later for not alerting her to his presence. With the warden alerted, he darted into the safety of his bedroom and closed the door behind him. If he could get a little studying done before dinner, maybe his mother would let him go outside later.

Hey, he could always dream, right?

As he plopped down at his desk, his eyes habitually wandered the the calender hanging on the wall. He zeroed in on the date.

And his heart dropped, right down into his shoes. His good mood went straight out the window, along with any motivation he might possibly have had for his studies.

He hadn't even realized it. He hadn't realized what the date was.

The prom was tomorrow night.

*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

"Videl?" the older woman said from the doorway.

No answer came from the closet, where the teenager was currently invisible beneath a moutain of clothes and the like. Quite frankly, it just wasn't normal for the young Miss Satan to even be digging around in her closet. She just wasn't the kind of girl who fretted over her outfits.

"Videl?"

"Where the HFIL is it?" an aggravated voice finally came in response, and Hannah couldn't help but smile. She'd seen Videl through nearly every stage children and teenagers were prone to go through, and now she would see her "daughter" through the prom as well.

Finally, the raven-haired teen emerged from the depths of her closet, though she still wasn't exactly visible. Her face was obscured behind the pile of dress, shoes, etc., in her arms; she quite unceremoniously dumped the pile on one side of the bed and flopped down on her stomach beside it.

Hannah sauntered into the room and looked over the jumbled heap of prom-wear thrown haphazardly about. Then she turned a measuring eye on her young friend. "I'm glad to see you've taken an interest in what you wear."

A muffled response came, one that sounded vaguely like Videl was saying, "Shaddup."

Sighing with an almost unfailing good nature, Hannah picked up the red dress and laid it carefully over the back of the chair. "I take it you're still upset over the fact that Gohan can't go."

"Understatement."

Hannah sighed again. "Well, if what you told me is true, then it's not exactly his fault, now is it?"

"It still sucks."

"So does everything. Welcome to Life. I'll be your hostess."

"You're not funny."

"Actually, I've been told that I'm quite the crack-up."

"Leave me alone."

"You're pouting."

"So what?"

"Knock it off."

"Make me."

"What are we doing with your hair?"

"I'm not going."

"Yes, you are."

"Am not."

"Are too."

"Am not."

"Are too."

"Am not."

Hannah stopped then. "Videl, what about those other two friends of yours? Sharpner and Erasa, right? Weren't you going to be going with them?"

"Yeah."

"So you can still have a good time. You're going, and that's that."

"Make me," Videl said again in an echo of her earlier sentiment. She propped herself up on her elbows and regarded the Satan family housekeeper with an icy look.

"Fine, I will," Hannah proclaimed, returning the teenager's glare with an unmatched calm. "I will force you into that dress, and I'll tie you down so I can do your hair and makeup, and then I'll drag you out to the limo kicking and screaming. Normally, I'd threaten to do this by holding onto your hair, but I guess that won't work in this case, so I'll figure something else out. Then I'll sit there and force feed you dinner, ride to the dance with you, drag you into the dance, and I will personally escort you onto the dance floor and tie you to the first boy that walks past."

By this point, the absurdity had even gotten through Videl's bad mood, and the teenager was laughing. "Well, if you put it that way…"

"Videl, you need to go, with or without Gohan. And besides," Hannah pointed out with a logic that came from years of experience. She had long ago figured out how to decipher exactly what Videl needed to hear. "How do you think Gohan feels? I'd wager he feels worse about it than you do."

Judging from the look on Videl's face, the thought hadn't occurred to her. Finally, the young woman sighed, albeit unahppily. "All right, okay, you win. I'll go. But I won't have a good time."

Hannah smiled victoriously, fully aware that the victory was a small one. After all, you could lead a horse to water—or as the case was, a dance—but you couldn't make him—or in this case, her—drink.

AN: Next chapter, the prom begins! The whole prom thing is going to be a two parter—i.e., two chapters. Hopefully, I'll get them done a lot faster than I got this one up. Sorry it's kinda short, but I'm really pressed for time. Also, Hannah's gonna be making fairly regular appearances from here on out—at least, I think she will. You'll get a better look at her character too, since this chapter wasn't a very good example of Hannah being the cool old lady she is ^-^ Thanks a million times over to my wonderful, amazing, awesome, fantastic reviewers! And thanks a mil to everyone who's been shipping me ideas for additional chapters. Thanks to you guys, this story is growing. It should be substantially longer than I originally planned it to be. Until next time, amigos, ciao!

Candyland's Fic Pick:

Title: Pencil Sketches of an Angel

Author: Swiss Army Knife

Rating: PG

Genre: Angst/Romance

ID No: 1187737

Summary: This was the first K/18 fic I ever read. 18 finds something, one of Krillen's little secrets. Trust me, even if you don't normally read K/18 stories, this one is bordering on magical. Actually, read any of Swiss Army Knife's stuff. He writes mostly about Krillen, and he's got a great perspective on things. You won't be disappointed.