AN: Wow…it feels like it's been ages since I wrote a DBZ one-shot. But when the inspiration hits, I gotta go for it. What can ya do? Write it, that's what you can do! Sit down with a notebook or computer and scribble the stupid thing out! Then post it on the Internet in the hopes of receiving feedback from readers on a certain website where all the rest of your multiple fanfictions are posted.
This is based on a true story. You might not believe it when/if you read it, but it is. This is based on something that happened to my mother. Believe it or don't, but my mother doesn't lie. So I believe it. I believe in this stuff. I don't own DBZ.
Just Before Midnight
It was a dark night. Not quite stormy, but getting close. Clouds rolled across the sky, blotting out the faint light the stars would have otherwise offered. There was the occasional flare of lightning and crash of thunder, but that was about it. It was pitch black outside, save for the rare lightning—not surprising, considering that it was just before midnight.
Inside the Satan mansion, four teenagers were all but oblivious to the condition of the weather outside. They were too busy groaning and complaining as one of their number managed to win the fourth game of Go Fish in a row.
"Yes!" Erasa laughed, flipping her hand around to show that the four cards she held were all aces. "I win again! Go me!"
A chorus of groans met her proclamation.
"Enough. Please!" Penny feigned begging as she rolled onto her back, sprawling out on the carpet. They were sitting on the floor while they played cards. "I can't take losing anymore! For the love of Kami, let's play something else!"
Erasa pretended to pout. "Aw, you're no fun."
"I agree with Pen," Gohan commented, using his friend's nickname. "Losing four games in a row to the same person isn't very good for my self esteem. There's gotta be something else we can do."
Videl glanced up at the huge clock on the wall. Her brow knitted as she appeared to think something over; then her face twisted into an enormous smile, and she climbed to her feet. "I think I might know something we can do. No winners and no losers, either. Hang on, I'll be right back." With that, she darted out of the room.
After watching the raven-haired fighter exit, Penny ran a hand through her long auburn tresses and sighed. "It's too bad Sharpner couldn't make it tonight. Must be lonely for you, Gohan. I mean, being the only guy and all."
Gohan just shrugged. "I don't know. Doesn't bother me."
"I wonder what Videl's got in mind," Erasa seemed to be thinking out loud as she gathered the playing cards into a neat pile and began shuffling them with all the practiced ease of a casino dealer. "Must be something really good for her to be this excited about it."
"If that's the case," Gohan pretended to groan, "it'll probably get me into trouble with my mom."
Erasa laughed. "Sharpie's right, Gohan. You are such a mama's boy!"
"So?" he replied, looking genuinely confused. Everyone laughed.
The door opened again, and Videl stepped back in. She had that huge smile, and was holding something flat in her hand. "It's almost midnight. The witching hour. So I thought maybe this would be fun to play with." She held up a Ouiji Board.
Erasa clapped her hands in delight. "That's an awesome idea!"
The rest of the group seemed to agree that it was indeed a good plan. Gohan displayed a little nervousness about playing with the thing, ("If my mom finds out, she'll kill me!") but he went along with it, secretly thinking that it might actually be fun.
Within ten minutes, they had set up a few candles, and had some sandalwood incense burning for protection. The door was shut, and the lights were turned off, leaving the room dark except for the faint glow from the candles positioned around the board.
Gohan, Videl, Erasa, and Penny carefully put their fingers on the small plastic indicator and took deep, meditative breaths. "Okay, let's see what the board has to say," Penny said softly. "Anyone have a question for the spirits?"
"I do!" Erasa suddenly said. "Am I going to pass the psych test on Tuesday?"
She looked more than a little dismayed when the heart-shaped piece of plastic slid up to the word NO. Everyone laughed at the disappointed expression on the blonde's face; she recovered quickly, though, and the four teens began peppering the board with questions.
"Who's Penny going to go to the Homecoming dance with?" Erasa asked after about twenty minutes of asking such questions as 'Who are we speaking with?' (the mover had declined to answer) and 'Is my father an idiot?' (that was Videl, and she got the answer she had expected).
A few giggles met her question as the indicator began to move across the letters of the alphabet enscribed across the piece of wood. It stopped on the letter M before trailing over to the A, then the R, and finally the K. Then it stopped, indicating that the answer was fully delivered.
"M-A-R-K!" Erasa squealed triumphantly. "Ohmigod, Mark's gonna ask you to the Homecoming dance!! No way! You've had a crush on him forever!"
The next thirty seconds or so were devoted to intense squealing by Penny and Erasa, while Gohan and Videl waited patiently. It was one of the surprising effects that Gohan had managed to have on Videl—since they had become first friends and then a couple, she had calmed down: less angry, more patient.
"Okay, okay, how about a no-brainer?" Penny seemed to regain control of herself as she asked the board the question. She was still giggling like crazy, though. "Will Videl actually go to the dance this year?" It was well known that Satan Videl wasn't really a fan of dances.
No one was really surprised when the indicator slid up to YES. "Who's it gonna be?" Erasa tittered. Once again, there really wasn't much shock when the indicator spelled out G-O-H-A-N. This prompted another round of high pitched squealing and giggling from the two more ditzy members of the party. But they soon managed to get themselves back under control and resumed the game of questioning the spiritual board.
"Okay, who's Erasa's date going to be?" Videl asked, getting into the swing of things. She was already certain what the answer was going to be, though, as certain as everyone else had been about her date. Erasa and Sharpner had been a pretty tight couple since right after that whole Majin Buu thing, not long after Gohan and Videl had gone out for the first time. So it was only natural that the board would dictate the blonde jock as the date in question.
But the indicator didn't move for a long, long moment. Then, suddenly, it simply moved to the side and slid off the board onto the carpet, where it ceased to move.
The four teenagers stared at it for a long moment. Then Penny let out a small laugh. "Very funny," she said, picking the small plastic heart back up and putting it back in the center of the board. "Let's try again. Who's Erasa's date going to be for Homecoming?"
To their surprise, the same thing happened. The indicator was motionless for a moment before sliding off the side of the board.
Two more times, they tried, and two more times, they had the exact same result.
By now, everyone was getting thoroughly freaked—especially Erasa. This had never happened before. What was going on?
The clock suddenly chimed, making everyone jump a mile. It was half past midnight. This had only been going on for half an hour? Somehow, it felt like ages longer.
"I think that's enough Ouiji board for tonight," Videl said firmly, shoving the board under the nearby couch, where it was out of sight. "I think it might be time for bed."
Needless to say, everyone agreed wholeheartedly with this, and within the next half hour, the entire party was sound asleep, splayed across the floor and the furniture.
Gohan was awakened by a scream.
It snapped him back to the world of the wakeful so suddenly that he fell off the couch, landing with a thud on the floor. He looked around in confusion before realizing that Videl was no longer there, and that Erasa and Penny were also looking around in bewilderment.
"What was that?" Penny yawned, rubbing at her eyes.
As if in answer to her question, Videl came flying back into the room. Tears were streaming from her eyes, and her face was bright red.
"Videl, what's wrong?" Gohan asked in concern, leaping to his girlfriend's side.
"I just got the call," she sobbed. "Last night, there was a car crash, just before midnight. Sharpner…he was killed. He's dead."
Gohan's jaw dropped while Penny gasped and Erasa burst into tears.
Then he stopped and went over what Videl had said in his mind again. "Videl, you said it happened just before midnight last night?"
"Uh-huh," she sniffed. "Why?"
For a moment, Gohan was silent. Then he walked to the other side of the room. The demi-Saiyan reached under the couch and pulled out the Ouiji board. He set it out on the carpet in front of him and stared at it for a long moment. "Sharpner was already gone when we asked about Erasa's date last night. That's why the board wouldn't answer."
Without really knowing why, Gohan set the indicator in the center of the board and put his fingers on it. Not that he really expected anything to happen, but something compelled him to do that.
He was startled when the plastic heart-shaped thing began to move of its own accord, dragging his fingers with it. It moved across the board to stop on a letter.
He stared at it, willing whoever was moving it to continue. It slid down to another letter.
"B, R," Gohan muttered as it moved again.
"B-R-A…" he spelled out loud. He could feel the others watching over his shoulder. The indicator continued to move, slowly.
Suddenly, a chill ran down Gohan's spine, and he knew exactly what the board was spelling out.
"B-R-A-I-N," Videl repeated from behind him. "It can't be…" But any doubts went out the window with the last letter.
Brains. Sharpner's teasing nickname for Gohan.
As the four teens watched in wide-eyed horror, the indicator moved again. Gohan lifted his hands away from the heart shaped piece of plastic, yet in continued to manuever itself around. It slid down the board to the very bottom, where it came to a halt.
AN: This is based on something that actually happened to my mother. It's the reason she would never let me have a Ouiji Board in the house. I have an intense fascination with the supernatural, so her refusal to let me get one always kind of ticked me off. But she only told me the story a few days ago.
Think what you will of Ouiji Boards and the like. I am a believer, and my dorm has a resident ghost that seems to have a devoted hobby of opening my door—my occasionally locked door. So…yah. Like I said, think what you will. I respect any and all opinions, and any anonymous flames will be used to keep warm, as winter is nearly upon us here in Iowa, and it's very cold. Ja ne!