The Past Returns
Goku and Chi-Chi looked on at the wreckage that was once a great castle. It had collapsed moments ago with Gogeta still in there. All this time, Goku had thought his son had made it out like Goten and Trunks did but as the building fell, something inside Goku told him he was wrong. As he and Chi-Chi stood in the air, Goku sense out for Gogeta's ki and to his horror, he discovered it was very low.
"Gogeta," Goku whispered.
Chi-Chi looked at Goku confused. She only had faint images of him but from what she was learning of her resurfacing memories, Gogeta was her son. "What about him?"
Goku clenched his fists as he tried to calm down. "The castle fell on him! He's trapped under there and he's hurt."
Goku looked back to see Goten and Trunks flying to him. Goten stopped in front of his parents and looked at his mother. Knowing about the memory loss of his mother, he chose his words and actions carefully instead doing what he wanted to do and that was to hug his Mom joyously. "Mom, do you remember me?" He stared at her features, noticing the youthful and tightness of her skin, wrinkles that were on her face when he last saw her were now gone. "Mom, you look younger."
Chi-Chi stared at Goten. There was something special about this young man that reached out to her. Aside from the shaggy hair and the slightly smaller build, he looked just like Goku. Chi-Chi had faint images of him as a baby and her being sad at that point in her life but something about him, helped her get over that. Yet, she wasn't sure about him completely because all of her memories haven't come back.
A smiled graced Goten's visage. Despite the fact Chi-Chi was unsure of what she said; all that matter to Goten was that she recognized him! "Yes, Mom. It's me," Goten assured his mother. The will to embrace his mother was stronger than before but since Chi-Chi was still looking at him more as an acquaintance she had not seen in a long time than a son, he held his ground.
In Goku's arms, Chi-Chi reached out to touch Goten's face. She ran her fingers over his eyelids, nose, mouth and in his hair some. "I remember giving birth to you."
Even though the moment between mother and son were nice, Goku had a serious matter to attend to and that was finding Gogeta. "Goten, take your mother back to the ship. I'm going to find Gogeta." As he said this put Chi-Chi in Goten's arms.
"Wait!" Trunks interrupted. "I want to come with you, Goku. He's my brother, too."
Goku wasn't going to deny Trunks. After all, with the two of them looking for Gogeta, they would find him quicker. "All right. Let's go."
Goku and Trunks flew to the castle and began their search for Gogeta under the tons of the rubble that covered his heavily wounded body. Goku sensed out Gogeta's ki to find it was very low. "Over there!" Goku pointed to the debris where the back end of the castle stood. The two flew to the rubble where Gogeta's body was and worked together lifting the heavy shards that weighed from mere hundreds of pounds to tons. Gogeta was very deep in the rubble and the longer he was the there, the higher the risk he could die.
Several worried, heart wrenching minutes passed before Trunks lifted a heavy piece of what was once concrete wall, tossed it callously away from him and noticed a patch of black hair. "Goku, I see something."
The two worked diligently removing the rest of the debris from the area and found Gogeta's body lying face first on a cold, broken tile unconscious. Goku and Trunks carefully pulled him out of the rubble. Trunks gasped in horror seeing how wounded Gogeta's arm was. It was nearly amputated. The rest of his body wasn't faring well either. He had severe bruises on his chest and back with several cuts and blood dripping from parts of his legs, right arm and of course his severely wounded left arm. Trunks couldn't help but wonder if it was the fight with Apollo and the palace falling on him that caused these injuries. "Goku. His arm."
Goku saw the blood on Gogeta's arms, the wounds on his body and knew it didn't bold well for his son. "I know. Let's get him back to the ship and see what we can do." He threw Gogeta's good arm over his shoulder, a firm arm around his son's waist and the three flew back to the ship as fast as they could.
When the three entered the ship, Iris was waiting for them with Goten and Chi-Chi, all anxious for their return so they can finally get out of here and head for home. Goten gasped at how wounded his little brother. He never saw his brother this badly beaten before. Chi-Chi rushed to his side. There was a motherly instinct that she had with him as well as Goten. She cried seeing how badly injured he was and feared the worst.
Iris rushed to Gogeta's side as well. She examined his left arm. "His arm is almost torn off."
"Yeah. It looks as if he may lose it," Goku mentioned grimly. He had to hold his emotions in and be realistic about the situation even though he didn't want to.
"Maybe not," Iris said as she carefully unwrapped Gogeta's arm. When it was completely unwrapped, she saw how it was only centimeters from being torn off. Iris firmly locked the limbs together by placing a hand on his lower and upper arm. "Hold his arm together like this," she told Goku. When he did, Iris put a hand on where Gogeta's arm was nearly severed. Her eyes and hands glowed silver as before when she sealed Vegeta's wounds. Goku and the others viewed the scene in curiosity, wondering what Iris was doing.
When Iris pulled her hands away, Gogeta's arm was locked in place as if it was never cut. Goku beamed in amazement at what she did. "Wow! You're a living senzu bean!"
Iris was lost at what Goku was referring to, but quickly remembered Gogeta giving her a senzu bean when they first met to heal her injuries. "No. My powers don't heal. I can only close wounds," she corrected Goku. "Gogeta will have to heal on his own. I would keep his arm in a cast until it does," she suggested.
"But you did save his life," Trunks said. "And my Dad with those powers of yours."
"Vegeta's really alive!" Goku was happy to know that everyone made it out. They were all coming home victorious and safe. "Thank you," he said gratefully. "We couldn't have done this without you." He looked at Chi-Chi. "Let's patch him up in his room." Chi-Chi agreed with a nod of her head and walked out with him.
"Now that everyone's here, we should leave before something happens," Trunks said. "I'll find Ami."
With everyone gone, only Goten and Iris remained in the room. "Aren't you staying here?" Goten asked out of the blue. "This is your home planet and their king is gone. You can rule it now."
Rule? Her? Iris scoffed at that. She had no intention on ruling. In fact, after all the bad memories she suffered here, she didn't want to ever see this planet again. Let someone else rule it. "No. This isn't the place for me. I wasn't very liked about anyone."
"You can change that now by being the ruler and restoring order so they do respect you," Goten suggested. "I think you would make a great leader."
Iris smiled, appreciating the compliment. "Thanks, but this isn't the place for me."
"Oh, I see," Goten said as he caught on to what was going on here. He smiled slyly. "You don't want to leave my brother, do you?"
Iris recalled the talk she and Gogeta had before meeting Apollo. Just thinking about the moment where they almost kissed, caused her face to heat up and a pink color to paint her cheeks. She tried to hide it of course by playing dumb. "Excuse me?"
Goten saw flushed face and knew she was terrible at hiding anything. His wily smile broadened. "I can see it on your face that you like my brother. Gogeta likes you, too. I've seen you two on this ship and my brother has never acted that way around women the way he's had with you. If you're worried about being accepted, don't. Dad will since you helped us save Mom and you're a good person. Mom might be the toughest to convince. She is protective of all of us, but I'm sure she will like you."
"And Vegeta?" Iris asked knowing how the Saiyan Prince felt about her.
Goten threw a hand behind his head. "Oh, yeah!" He forgot about Vegeta. "He might be tough but you did save his life so you earned a few points there."
"Gogeta did invite me to stay on Earth with him," Iris confessed. Even if she was leaving her home planet to go to Earth, she had her doubts and concerns. "But I don't know where to stay or how to make a living on my own. I don't want to impose, and from what Gogeta told me about his mother, there isn't a shadow of a doubt in my mind she would refused me in her home. She's right of course," Iris spoke truthfully. "A woman her son is interested in shouldn't be living with them. Besides, I do have my morals as well. I will not live with a man I'm not married, too."
Goten was impressed with Iris and knowing how morally strong Iris was knew it would impress his mother. "I take it back. You and Mom are going to get along just fine. Vegeta's your only worry."
Before Iris could respond to that comment, Ami's voice was over the com that spread throughout the room. She was telling everyone to get to return to the bridge of the ship and get their seats now so she can take off. Iris let her thoughts go on Vegeta and returned with Goten to the bridge where they along with everyone else buckled up and flew away from Olympus forever.
An hour after the ship was in space, Ami entered the sickbay to check on Vegeta's progress. She looked Vegeta over in the makeshift rejuvenation tank she created; still surprised to see him in there. When she made this device, she never thought about Vegeta being in there but someone else. She read the numbers on the panel of the tank. "Your vitals are looking well. I think in a few more hours, you should be ready to come out."
She sighed as she took a seat in front of him. Through the clear glass that gave a view of Vegeta from the waist and up, she saw the scars on his chest were healing. Seeing him like this, created a strange need for Ami to confess to Vegeta something she never thought she would say to him. He was unconscious and unaware of what was going on so she could say what she wanted. "This may sound strange and even rude but I am glad it's you in there and not Trunks. I brought this tank with me because I was worried he would get himself hurt. Let's face it--Trunks doesn't train as much as when he was a kid because he's busy with Capsule Corporation."
Ami threw her hands behind her head and leaned back in the chair as she stared at the ceiling. "I should give him more credit because he's your son and all. Trunks' very strong and a pretty good negotiator. I've seen him in meetings with board members at Capsule Corp. He's great at intimidating people." She smiled at him. "We know where he gets that from." She frowned and held her arms around her as if protecting herself. "But sometimes I see him and feel a need to protect him.
"I've known him since he was 14. He was a good help after your wife died. He helped test my experiments. Some were successful, others were disasters, and even though he got mad at me for the experiments that went bad on him, he continued to volunteer for the next one. I think our friendship worked both ways. He tested the inventions and I taught him about the technology in a way it was interesting to him."
Ami chuckled as she watched Vegeta heal. "It's funny talking to you and you're not saying anything. I can finally get my words out without being told to shut up. It's surreal because even as Trunks grew to be a young man, I kept seeing a boy who loss his mother, but something happened one day after he turned 21. I stopped looking at him as a boy but as a handsome, young man. I know I shouldn't feel this way because I work for him. There's a six year age difference between us but that's not much, considering how people with a much bigger gap in ages come together. I knew I should've stopped feeling this way for Trunks, but I couldn't.
"The more my feelings became for him, the more I became protective of him, which is stupid sine Trunks is one of the strongest people on Earth," Ami reasoned. "But then Chi-Chi was kidnapped and Trunks was going on this trip. I had to make sure he was okay." The room was silent except for the air bubbles and the hum of Vegeta's tank. "I can't believe I admitted that. Well, it's not like you can say anything," Ami laughed.
"So, that's why you came on this trip and insisted you come with me into the castle."
Ami felt her heart dropped at the sound of that voice. She slowly looked back quickly to see Trunks standing in the doorway with his arms crossed. His facial expressions weren't readable and that scared Ami since she always had a good idea what he was thinking. "H-how long have you been there?"
"Long enough." He uncrossed his arms and strode in the room. "Do you realize how stupid it was of you to come on this trip and in the castle because of me?!"
Ami wasn't sure how Trunks would react to her confession, but that wasn't it. So, she fired back. "I don't need to repeat it since you eavesdropped on me, but I was worried about you!"
"I can handle myself! For crying out loud, you could've gotten yourself killed and what good would that have done me!"
Ami didn't want to admit it, but Trunks did have a good point. Still, he didn't have to be so angry with her. "Well, then why didn't you try to stop me?! You're stronger than me! You could've tied and gagged me!"
"Knowing you, you would've found a way out, tried to find me and ended up getting yourself killed in the process! I can't leave you alone for a second without you doing something ridiculous stupid!"
"Is it so stupid that I care about you?!" Ami yelled.
This time it was Trunks who shut up. Ami was right. It wasn't stupid that she cared about him, but there was no need to worry about him since he could take care of himself. "No, it's not stupid," he admitted quietly.
"Then what is it?" Ami asked cautiously. Her secret was exposed and she had hunches of her own about Trunks, but with him, she could never be so sure.
Ami studied Trunks features carefully. If she didn't know any better, she could swear a hint of a blush on his face. "Are you blushing, Trunks?"
"What?! Of course not!" Trunks said flustered.
Ami giggled. "You're blushing."
This was embarrassing Trunks. Like his father, he wasn't one to be open with his feelings. Hearing Ami confessed her feelings, was a relief off his shoulders. He wasn't sure how she felt about him. To him, it was foolish for him to like her. After all, he was a kid when they first met and she was an older woman. Well, to a fourteen-year-old kid, twenty was old, especially one who was a little goofy even though a genius. In any case, she wouldn't have feelings for him. Now he had to admit his feelings and was finding that difficult. He felt it but how could he say it?
Trunks felt a hand gently stroking his. He tilted his head slightly to see Ami smiling at him. From the look on his face, she knew what he knew. She raised her hand to caress his cheek. "You don't have to be shy with me, Trunks."
"Uh, I know," he said nervously. He reached out to take her hand and squeeze it gently in his own. "See, I'm not shy with you."
"Then prove it."
Trunks tilted Ami's head upward and kissed her softly. He pulled Ami closer to him and she wrapped her arms around his neck kissing him back. When Trunks pulled away, Ami looked disappointed. "That's it? All this time of wondering and that's it?"
Trunks felt shock and insulted. That's it? What did she mean that was it? He felt something and he thought she did to. "What?"
Ami laughed. "You're so gullible." She jabbed him gently in his stomach. "You're too serious. You need to loosen up."
Trunks did a leg sweep and tripped Ami. Ami yelped in surprise as she fell but Trunks easily caught her. Ami wasn't looking pleased. "That's wasn't funny."
"But you said I needed to loosen up."
"Tripping me doesn't count," Ami told him.
"What about this?" Trunks whispered and kissed Ami once more.
Gogeta awakened to find that he was in his bedroom on the ship. How did he get here? The last thing he remembered was Apollo's castle crashing in on him. He thought he was a goner for sure.
"You're finally coming around."
Gogeta looked over to the right and saw Iris sitting in a chair beside the bed. "Iris?" He rose and grunted when he felt a sharp pain in his left arm. "Ow!" He looked at his arm wrapped in a bandage. "My arm feels whole. I thought it was gone."
"Your parents fixed you up, but you're still wounded and need to rest to get your strength back. You lost a lot of blood."
"My parents are here?!" Gogeta said happily. "Dad got Mom back. Where is she?"
"She's with Goku and Goten right now," Iris explained. "How are you feeling?"
"I feel a lot better now with the news of my Mom, but if you're asking physically, my body's still sore." Gogeta smiled gratefully at her. "Thanks…for the arm. Who got me out of the castle?"
"Goku and Trunks."
The mentioning of Trunks reminded Gogeta of Vegeta and what happened to him. The horrible image of Vegeta getting stabbed and dying in his arm flashed in his mind. He felt wracked with guilt for not saving his father and now his brother Trunks didn't have a parent anymore. The guilt tripled at that. "Oh, no, Trunks! I've got to tell him about Vegeta. I've got to tell him Vegeta's dead."
"No, it's okay," Iris interrupted him. She felt excitedly suddenly since she couldn't wait to tell him the good news. "Vegeta is alive."
Gogeta's face changed from horror and guilt to surprise. He couldn't believe what he heard. "Vegeta's alive? How?"
"Like you, I thought Vegeta was dead, but I felt his heart beating slowly. So, I sealed up the wounds my brother caused and gave him some of my ki to get his heart beating steadily again, and Ami put Vegeta in a rejuvenation tank. It's healing his internal wounds now. He should make a full recovery."
"That's great!" Gogeta said excitedly. "I have to see him and Mom!" Excited, Gogeta pulled Iris to him with his good arm and before she realized it Gogeta was kissing her.
Iris' eyes widened in surprise. Gogeta was kissing her. Her mind was in a whirlwind of confusion as she felt Gogeta's lips on hers. Her eyes slowly droop closed, her heart pounded and her body heated up. To her disappointment, she felt Gogeta pulled back. A lock of her black hair fell across her cheek and Gogeta swooped it back behind her ear.
Iris could feel her cheeks flushed from the kiss. "Um, what was that for?"
Gogeta gave her a knowing look. "I think you what that was for."
Iris felt like a shy teen in love. Sharing affection and feeling vulnerable for good reasons were new to her, given her background and she liked it. She could feel the blush still on her cheeks and not feel shameful about it. She didn't mind Gogeta made her feel this way, especially how his hand was stroking her cheek.
"Since you didn't stay on Olympus, I guess that means you're coming home with me."
Iris blushed deepened. "I, uh, um--" She had never been this tongue tied before in her life. She was always serious, level headed and straightforward, but Gogeta was easily changing that.
This was the first time Gogeta saw Iris was flustered and it pleased him in a strange way that he was causing this. "You know what's strange. We've known each other for a while and I don't know that much about you. I don't even know your age. What is it?"
"You should never ask a lady that."
"I know, but you're no ordinary lady," he replied back smartly. "You said Apollo was in his sixties and he looked so young. What about you? Are you in your sixties or fifties? My mother would want to know if I'm getting involved with an older woman."
Iris chuckled and gently shoved Gogeta. "Since you're that nosy… I'm 23."
Gogeta blinked. "You're 23? Wow! I thought you were older since Apollo was in his sixties. How old was your mother when she gave birth to you?"
"Seventy-one." She said it as if it was no big deal.
Gogeta's eyes tripled in size. "Seventy-one?!" He shrieked. "But that's old!"
Iris frowned, not happy with Gogeta referring to her mother as old. "Only to you because you only know about women on your planet to age fast, but there are thousands of worlds out there with different societies that you don't know about." She thought wistfully being to the planets that amazed her. "There are many animals you have never seen before, fighters of amazing techniques that you never met, foods that are a hundred times better than what you may consider your favorite. Some worlds are like fantasies in storybooks and others are nightmares. There are so many worlds outside your blue planet that you know nothing about."
The worlds Iris talked about amazed Gogeta. "Really? I'd like to see them."
"Maybe I'll take you one day," Iris said. "Once you get better."
Gogeta stole a kiss on Iris' cheek. "I'll hold you to it."
The door quietly opened interrupting Iris and Gogeta. Gogeta wondered who it was until he saw Goku and Chi-Chi entering the room. The young man's face lit with joy seeing his mother alive and well. "Mom!"
Chi-Chi quickly went to Gogeta's side and hugged him. Iris saw this as a moment for the family and quietly left the room. "How do you feel?"
"Physically sore, but otherwise okay," Gogeta said as he pulled back to look at his mother's face. His face scrunched up in confusion. "You look different."
Chi-Chi smiled a little. "So, I'm told. I was made younger. I still don't remember everything but from what I was told, Apollo made me younger so I could bore his children."
The way Chi-Chi sounded, how she couldn't remember was odd to Gogeta. "Mom, don't you remember that on your own?"
Chi-Chi shook her head. "No. I had my memory wiped and thanks to Goku, it's slowly coming back." She saw Gogeta's fists clenched in anger. She placed a hand on one. "It's okay. I'm starting to remember. Goku says it's this whole Saiyan bond thing. Do you like chocolate cake with white icing? I have a strange feeling that you do."
"Yeah, it's my favorite."
"Really? Um, I'll make you one when we get back."
The sound of cooking from his Mom made Vegeta's mouth water. "Thanks!"
"Thank you for saving me. I'm sorry you got hurt," Chi-Chi said.
"It's okay, Mom. You're all right now and so is everyone else."
"You did us all proud," Goku said joining in the conversation. A look of pride was on his face--the same prideful look he had of his son, Gohan when he defeated Cell. "It was a tough fight, but you won. You challenged yourself to a powerful opponent and won. I'm proud of you, Gogeta," Goku said.
"Thanks, Dad. I really did try," Gogeta said pleased at his father's words. Even he felt he stepped out of his father's shadow and proven himself to be the hero like his dead, he wasn't going to stop in his training. He would continue training until he was the strongest.
"I think that's enough talk for now," Chi-Chi said motherly as she fluffed Gogeta's pillow. "We should let him rest." She whispered in his ear, "I like your friend. Will I have to train her like Videl to be a good wife?"
Gogeta looked at his mother blushing. He could hear his father snickering. "Mom! It's too early. We haven't been on a date yet."
Chi-Chi sat back on the bed. "It's never too early to start marriage. Your father and I were marriage when we were your age." She frowned for a moment as she thought. "At least I think so."
Gogeta looked more like a kid being forced to do something embarrassing than an injured hero. "Mom!"
"At least she's remembering," Goku said. He took Chi-Chi's hands and pulled her off the bed. "Come on, Chi-Chi. Let's let him rest and not think about marriage." He escorted her out of the room, despite her confusion on what was wrong with marriage. Goku knew better at how this made Gogeta uncomfortable. She was like this with Gohan and Videl and was starting on Goten and Marron. Chi-Chi would never change on the subject of marriage and her children.
Vegeta changed clothes in his room after he was revived in the rejuvenation tank. He didn't say much after he awakened. Trunks was there with him as he explained what had happened and how Iris helped save his life. He heard a knock at his door and told whoever it was to come in.
It was Iris.
Vegeta was curious. Why did she come to see him? "What do you want?" He said picking out a shirt in his closet.
Iris stood her ground as she stepped in the room. "Hi. I just wanted to see how you were doing."
He put his shirt on and buttoned it. "As you can see, I'm fine."
'I can see his attitude hasn't change,' Iris thought sardonically. "All right. Gogeta's very happy to know that you are alive. That's all I have to say." She started to leave when she heard Vegeta say something. She paused at the door looking lost. "I didn't hear that."
"I said thanks…for saving my life."
"Oh!" Iris was surprised. Vegeta thanking her? "You shouldn't thank me. I'm partly responsible for you getting hurt. If I had known about my brother…"
Vegeta glared at her. "You got that right."
'Boy, he holds grudges. Not that I blame him.'
"I know how you feel for my son and how he feels for you. I also know you have no place to stay on Earth and Chi-Chi will not let you live with her and her son." He spoke so low that if it wasn't for Iris' sharp hearing she wouldn't have heard him. Where was he going with this?
In any case, she stood her ground in spite of anything negative Vegeta might say. "I don't plan to. That's not how I conduct myself. It's true I have no place to stay, but I'll find something."
Vegeta sighed. He had a feeling he was going to regret it but this was for his son and only temporarily. "You can stay with Trunks, Ami and myself at Capsule Corp. We have plenty of room."
"I can?" Iris was startled. Vegeta helping her? Maybe all that water his body was submerged in from the rejuvenation tank did something to his head. Whatever the case, Iris wasn't complaining. "I must admit--getting help from you was the last thing I expected."
"Things change." Was all Vegeta said before walking out the door.
Iris was speechless. He was the one who didn't trust her and now it looked as if she gained respect from him. She shrugged. "I guess nearly dying would do that to you."
Now that he was well, Vegeta wanted to check on Gogeta. The last time he saw his son, he was badly beaten. He opened the door to Gogeta's room and found his son in bed, thumbing through pages of a martial arts magazine. He looked up and smiled, happy to see him alive and well with his own eyes.
The way Gogeta looked at Vegeta reminded him of the times Gogeta smiled at him admirably as a kid--the look where a child looked at parent with adoration and amazement at all the things a parent could do. Vegeta studied Gogeta's physical features from the large bandages wrapped on his left arm to the small bandages on his face to hide the cut and bruises there and on his other arm. He even had a white bandage wrapped around his head.
"You looked you've been through a garbage disposal."
Gogeta laughed at Vegeta referring to all the bandages and wounds that were still healing. He winced suddenly and clutched the left side of his waist. "Don't make me laugh. My body's still sore."
Vegeta rolled his eyes. "You were always a whiner of feeling pain."
"I guess I get that from you," Gogeta shot back. "Seriously, I'm glad you came to see me. I want to talk to you."
Vegeta knew what Gogeta wanted to talk about. He took a seat at the chair besides Gogeta bed, crossed his arms proudly over his chest and waited for Gogeta to speak. "Talk."
"Do I call you Dad?"
"Call me whatever you want, but I think Vegeta is best so there's no confusion."
Still putting up the strong front as usual, Gogeta noticed of Vegeta. "I wanted to apologize for my behavior the other night when you told me you were my father, too. I don't feel all that well knowing how you feel for my mother, but I know you won't do anything."
"There's nothing to apologize about," Vegeta dismissed the apology. Vegeta always knew Gogeta wouldn't take the news well. Who would? Certainly not Vegeta. "I would've killed a man for making a confession such as that to me."
"Knowing you, I'm not surprised. The point is--you're my Dad, too and I want you to know that I'm proud to be your son. I feel very honored that I'm carrying your blood. I'm also proud of Trunks being my brother, too. I saw him earlier and we had a long talk." He smiled humbly. "It's pretty cool that he's my brother. He was always like one to me. I'm glad you, my mom and my other Dad planned this out so I can spend time with you and Trunks and become close with you."
"It was your mother's idea," Vegeta reminded him.
"I know. You told me, but you and Dad agreed to it." A spark of innocence appeared on his face. "Hey, does this mean I'm a prince now?"
Vegeta raised an eyebrow at his son. "What?"
"You're a prince even though you should be king but I guess you can't since you never had a coronation, so does this mean Trunks and I are princes, too."
"NO! Only I'm the Prince of the Saiyans!" Vegeta barked. He may lose a lot of things in his life--his pride, his title of being the strongest Saiyan but no way was he going to lose or share his title as prince. That was his alone.
Gogeta laughed at Vegeta being upset. He remembered asking Vegeta that question as a kid about Trunks being Prince and he went berserk. "All right. I won't ask to be prince, Dad."
Vegeta remained still as a look of genuine happiness peek through the eyes of his stone face. It was the second time Gogeta said that to him. It really did touch him that Gogeta called him Dad. Even Gogeta could see it now. He wanted to see more like this than the tough exterior all the time. An idea came to him. "How about this--when I'm with my other Dad I call you Vegeta so there's no confusion but when it's just us I call you Dad?"
Vegeta didn't need a long time to think it over. He knew what he wanted. He held a hand out to Gogeta and smiled. "Deal."
Gogeta shook Vegeta's hand smiling. "Deal, Dad."
Kiro didn't waste anymore time as he ran to strike Ox King. Kiro was so fast that Ox King didn't have the time to put up a defense. He punched Ox King in the chest using a quarter of his strength. Ox King cried in pain as he felt a few ribs break instantly with that hit and a mouthful of blood spilled out of his mouth. Kiro struck Ox King on the back of his neck just as fast, just as hard with a sharp hand. A loud crack was heard and Ox King collapsed to the ground unmoving.
Chi-Chi watched it all in horror. He was too fast for anyone to strike. "Dad!!" Chi-Chi cried running to her father's side as he fell to the ground. She shook him gently. "Dad! Dad, wake up!" Chi-Chi cried, tears falling down her cheeks.
Ox King laid there unmoving in his daughter's arms.
Kiro laughed. "You can forget it if you think that fossil is coming around ever. He's finished."
Chi-Chi felt for a pulse and didn't find any. Tears continue to pour from her eyes. "Dad! Dad, no! You can't be dead! You can't be!" She buried her head on the back of her father crying.
"No!" Chi-Chi screamed as she bolted in bed in a cold sweat. That couldn't have happened. Her father was dead. She thought with her memories coming back, she would learn that her father was alive.
Goku kept a safe distance from Chi-Chi in bed so they weren't touching. She hadn't got all her memories back yet, so Chi-Chi wasn't comfortable becoming intimate with him even though Goku wanted to be. When he opened his eyes after hearing her scream, he saw she was crying.
"Chi-Chi?" Goku said sitting up in bed and putting his arms around her. "What's the matter?"
"My father," she finally got out after heavily crying on Goku. "I dreamed he died by Kiro." She looked at Goku pleadingly. "Please tell me it's a dream and that he's alive." Goku was hesitant to respond and she took his silence as the truth. Chi-Chi even louder and Goku held her close to sooth her.
"I'm sorry, Chi-Chi," he whispered. "I'm so sorry."
"He's not coming back, is he?"
Goku rubbed her back soothingly, trying to prepare her for the awful truth. "No, he's not. After Buu, we all agreed to never use the dragon balls for personal use again. It was a crutch to us. We promise to accept the hand life gave us--whether dying in battle or dying by accident. There are people all over the world who have to accept the card life dealt them, no matter how unfair it might be, while we, who are no more important than anyone else, have used the dragon balls to constantly change life to suit us. We can't do that. It's not fair to the other people who can't change anything."
Chi-Chi had stopped crying as Goku talk. He was right. She recalled that day faithfully when Goku made the announcement they shouldn't use the dragon balls anymore. It was at a reunion for them all when Pan was a newborn. "I remember." She pulled away to wipe the tears from her eyes. "Dad is probably happy where he is anyway. I know he was a good man. He's probably with Mom now or your Grandpa Gohan."
Goku was glad Chi-Chi was accepting the matter on her father so calmly. "When we get to Earth, we'll give your Dad a proper funeral and then we'll see Baba. She can tell us about your Dad in Other World."
Chi-Chi sniffed as she agreed to the idea. "I'd like that."
For the rest of the trip home, Chi-Chi's memory slowly came back as she spent more time with her husband and sons. It was also during this time that Chi-Chi learned of Gogeta discovering the big secret that was kept from him for eighteen years. She was relieved Gogeta wasn't angry about it anymore. When she met with Vegeta and Trunks on the ship, she thanked them both for coming to help rescue her. Trunks accepted her thanks while Vegeta was just pleased that she was alive and well and left the matter at that. Chi-Chi also talked with Iris more and told the woman if she was going to be Gogeta's wife, she would train her on being a good wife. This caused Iris and Gogeta to fluster and Goku and Goten to laugh at them. That was until the question was shot at Goten at when he and Marron would marry.
On the day of their return, everyone waited outside Capsule Corp. Gohan was standing with Videl and Pan, Yamcha was with his family as well and Krillin with 18 and an anxious Marron wanting to see her boyfriend. She had worried about him since he left and couldn't wait to see him again. Only then would she know he was safe.
The ship came to a smooth landing on the grounds of the large capsule corporation. Marron watched as the smoke from the ship's landing cleared and the door slowly opened. "Goten! Goten!!"
Goten was first to step off the ship with a luggage bag over his shoulder. His face lit up with joy seeing Marron's face. The journey to save his mother was even more worth to see the loving look Marron was giving him. "Hey!" he said with a wave. Marron screamed and ran to Goten. He dropped his bag and held his arms out for her as she jumped into them. He swung her in his arms as he hugged her tightly. "I told you I would be back."
"I know, but I was so worried," Marron said with a frown but smiled seeing Goten's cheerful grin. "It doesn't matter now. You're home." She buried her head in his chest. "You're home."
The next to step off the ship were Vegeta, Trunks and Ami and last but not least, Goku, Chi-Chi and Gogeta.
"Grandma!!" Pan screamed and ran to her grandmother for a hug. "I missed you!"
Chi-Chi returned the hug. "I did, too, once I got my memory back."
Pan looked up confused. "Huh?"
Chi-Chi patted her head. "I'll tell you later."
"Mom," Gohan greeted his mother and gave her a hug. "I'm glad you're safe."
"I'm glad to be back."
"Um, Mom, why do you look younger?" Gohan asked confused.
"Long story. We'll tell you later," Chi-Chi promised.
More hugs and congratulations were spread through the group as friends and family were reunited after being apart for weeks. Goku and Gogeta told the others what had happened when they were on their ship and their fights on Olympus. Gohan had an adventure of his own to tell about Apollo's minions coming to attack Earth and how everyone worked together to defeat them.
It was a surreal feeling, but everyone knew that this would be the final major fight for them. Gathered together and talking as friends and family gave a pleasant feeling to them all that peace had returned to Earth for good. All their enemies of the past were now gone and a new life was beginning for everyone. Chi-Chi was younger again, therefore extending her life with Goku longer for many years to come. Gohan had Videl and Pan and were talking of expanding their family. Goten and Gogeta had their school to build and their romantic lives ahead of them with Marron and Iris. Yamcha was going to be around to see his daughter grow up in a young woman and marry a nice man and continue to rest of his days with his wife. Krillin had his wife and daughter. Trunks was starting a new life with Ami as they pursued their relationship. Vegeta had Trunks but a new life with his son, Gogeta as they would be spending more time together, getting to know each other more and possibly traveling to other planets that Iris promised him. No more wars, no more fights to save the world, just tranquil peace.
AN: YAY! I finished!! Finally! Five months this story has been up. Can you believe it? I sure can't but what a ride! Thanks for the reviews, the rational ones anyway, and a special thanks a war didn't break out over this one! Whoo-hoo! I'm done!! Time to party!!
Saiyan Vamp: Well, no more cliffhangers. It's over. Yes, Gogeta went SSJ2. Thanks for reading.
Lady Athena: Yay! Everything worked out! Well, castle for Gogeta but his Dad helped him out and Gogeta is still the hero. Ami and Iris always gotten along. It's just now that Iris thinks Ami is a little strange. Hee. Hee. The idea of the tank came from those Sagas. It kind of looked like a washing machine to me. This is it! No more sequels. Everyone is living in happier times from now on in this story.
Carrie: Yeah, Vegeta made it out. I decided not to kill him off. Yep. G/CC are going to be just fine from now on. Gogeta makes it out and he's going to have a happy life just like the rest from now on. No more dramas for them in this saga.
GD: LOL! The only Apollo fan. Poor you. I understand about the protagonist dying. It does work for some stories. Goku was supposed to have died after killing Frieza and that was how DBZ was suppose to end but the fans wanted Goku to continue so Akira Toriyama did. Thanks for the compliments. I'm glad you liked it.
Sara: What resolution between ChiChi and Vegeta? They got that worked out in 'Unexpected Love'? She's been friends with him since.
Moongirl: LOL! You said please don't die Gogeta and then say at ChiChi's safe. Oh, wow!
Sadako: That manga scene is so like Goku. Yep, Gogeta made his Mom proud.
Chuquita: Not for a while Gogeta wasn't with that nearly torn off arm but it's all good now.
Gogirl: ::Vegeta storms in the room:: You will not watch anymore Wizard of Oz!! ::Me:: Oh, come on. It was a good movie. ::Vegeta glares at me:: You're going to pay for what you did to me in ChiChi's Surprise!!! ::Me:: (Screams and runs around the house looking for Goku) What I put G/CC is nothing to what you may do. It wasn't that bad and it's certainly not OOC and ridiculously stupid as some authors make it for G/CC stories.
Lady Kouga: Yep, they'll fine and they made up. Thanks for the compliments on the G/CC moments.