Popping The Question
A Dragonball Z Fanfiction by Aoikami Sarah
With the arrival of Mrs. Briefs, the main house at Capsule turned into wedding planning central. Bulma managed to convince her mother that they should wait at least a week so the announcements and invitations could reach everyone. Mrs. Briefs had "helped" her daughter amass a list of close to twenty of her friends. If Bulma hadn't argued that the press should be left out of her big day, her mother would have invited hundreds of guests. It wasn't too difficult to keep Vegeta from knowing the extent of the plans; he had taken to camping out in the gravity room to avoid his psychotic mother-in-law. The old woman was everywhere. She tied up the phone all day calling caterers, decorators, entertainers and dress-makers. Every other word out of her mouth had to do with the event. After day three, Bulma was stressed to the breaking point.
"Mother, I think I've seen enough dresses today," she suggested as politely as she could.
"But honey, you haven't found one you like yet."
"That's because my eyes started to cross after the fiftieth one..." She slumped down into a chair and blew her bangs out of her eyes.
"What about Vegeta? Has he found a tux yet? I've hardly seen him since I got here..."
Bulma shuddered. 'Has he found a tux yet...?' "You know, Mom, he's not really into the planning part. If he had to deal with all this craziness I'd consider it a miracle he'd show up at all."
"Craziness?" Bulma's mother sat down next to her. "Is this too much for you, sweetie?"
"You could say that."
"I thought you always wanted a big wedding!"
"I do! I mean, I did... oh..." she attempted to explain to her mother that the simpler this was the less painful it would be for Vegeta. He'd bent over backwards thus far. She owed it to Vegeta to take it easy on him. Her mother looked dejected.
"You know, our wedding was touted as being the biggest, most impressive event in the social history of the civilized world! Even surpassing the weddings of most royalty."
"That's because royalty don't have as much money," she murmured.
"That may be, but... I guess I just want you to have the same..."
Mrs. Briefs got up and smoothed her hand over dress number fifty-one. Bulma sighed and rose. She took the dress off the rack and walked into the dressing room.
Trunks, Bulma, Mrs. Briefs Chi-Chi, Goten and the Pastor gathered for the rehearsal. They waited for a half an hour. Then Bulma started screaming. Vegeta didn't show. They went through the motions anyway, Bulma insisted. She was ardent. She hadn't spent the last week going nuts to plan this thing just to have him ruin it.
"But, if Dad doesn't show up tomorrow... isn't this kinda pointless?" Trunks asked fairly innocently.
"If he stands me up tomorrow, it's his funeral," she fumed. The week had strained her to the point of insanity. She now wanted this thing over just as bad as he did. They finished the practice run and Bulma stormed out, closely followed by her mother who yammered into her ear as she went.
.x. .x. .x.
People started arriving at eleven in the morning. All the guests were gathered and seated by one. Twenty some odd people sat in the audience. Flowers burst from vases and every post of the tent on the Capsule green. The press loomed outside, but ten foot walls and armed guards kept them at bay.
Miles from the complex, Vegeta cursed and pounded on the horn. A line of traffic spiraled in front of his car as far as his keen eyes could see. "What the hell is the hold up!?!" he screamed.
"Hey, take it easy, buddy! There's the Briefs wedding today, don't cha know?!" the man in the car next to his screamed back.
"No, really?!" the Saiyan looked sadly down at his precious car and sighed before abandoning it for the sky.
Trunks stood stiffly in his grey tuxedo and looked out the living room window at the open air tent. "He's still not here." The boy was furious with his father, but not nearly as furious as his mother.
"Told ya this'd happen. That guy is unreliable," Dr. Briefs murmured to his wife. He leaned against the wall, a cigarette hanging from his lip, his cat on his shoulder; halos above both their heads. Mrs. Briefs, who had been crying constantly all morning, hit her husband's arm with the back of her hand.
"Can you go look around for me please?" Bulma asked Trunks rapidly. He obeyed and went on reconnaissance.
Trunks flew around to the gravity chamber which was fortunately empty. He levitated above the complex and checked from the air. There was no sign of the prince anywhere. 'Damn him,' Trunks thought. 'If she doesn't kill him, I will.' Then he noticed the Aston Martin was missing.
"He took the car somewhere," the boy reported.
Bulma grabbed his lapels. "Where!?!"
"I don't know."
She started to hyperventilate. "That's it. That's it!" She grabbed her bouquet and stormed towards the door. Trunks, Chi-Chi, Videl, Goten, Dr. and Mrs. Briefs held her back.
"No! Bulma! What are you gonna do?" Chi-Chi pleaded with her friend.
"I'm gonna tell EVERY body what a..." she stopped short. Through the window, she saw Vegeta touch down. He was in his tux.
Everyone sighed and let her go. She was calmer, but still mad. Her heart raced with apprehension. The Pastor popped inside and organized the wedding party. He looked at the strange man standing next to Bulma.
"Dr... Briefs?" the young man stammered. "I thought you were..."
Chi-Chi ushered them outside to avoid having to explain the mysterious powers of Uranai Baba to the startled Pastor. Trunks and the Pastor emerged from the house. The boy tried to scowl at Vegeta, but was in fact thrilled that this day had come and that his father had made it. Besides, he looked like he was going to be sick.
They took their places in front and turned to watch. Mrs. Briefs, bawling her eyes out, was guided to her seat by Gohan's wife. The music started to play. Everyone rose to see the procession. Goten carried a red, quilted pillow on which the rings were nestled. Trunks and Chi-Chi marched down and took their places as best man and matron of honor. Vegeta couldn't swallow. His temperature skyrocketed. His vision blurred. He panicked. 'Oh shit, now I KNOW I'm going to throw up. I could just shoot up through the roof of the tent and be long gone before she even sees me...' he thought to himself. Then he saw her.
He thought he saw her grimace just before she got out the door, but her expression softened as her eyes locked on his. She glowed. Her gown, her hair; everything was perfect. Her father had put out his cigarette and actually looked dignified in his tux. The tell-tale halo explained his presence to the prince. Vegeta stared at Bulma as she inched towards him. His heart hammered his blood through his regal veins. Finally they were face to face. In his mind's eye the crowd that made him want to flee disappeared. He could hear the words the Pastor spoke and somehow managed responses at the right times (he had learned as much from the films which he had gotten part-way through watching). He was in a trance.
Bulma's hands shook, so she clutched her bouquet tightly. For the third time, she saw his eyes as she had never seen them before. His brows weren't quite so pitched downwards, his mouth hardly scowled at all. Vegeta finished his vows flawlessly. Her heart palpitated. 'Ohmygod, this is actually happening.' She heard herself recite her own vows as if she was somewhere distant, lost in his dark eyes. He took her hand and slipped the ring on her finger. She blindly did the same. He held her hands.
"Do you, Vegeta Oujisama, Prince of Vegeta-sei, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded bride?"
There was no hesitation but the words came out slightly hushed. "I do."
"And do you, Bulma Briefs, take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband?"
Her voice wavered a little with a stifled sob. "I... I do."
"Then by the power vested in me, I now pronounce you, husband and wife. You may kiss the bride." The Pastor took a step backwards.
Vegeta slipped his right arm around her waist, pulled her to him and kissed her in front of everyone. Suddenly the reality of the moment kicked back in and he heard applause. Everyone was back on their feet and clapping, most smiling ear to ear. The women had tears in their eyes. Mrs. Briefs bawled loudly. He held his wife's hand and his chin up high. They recessed out of the tent and into the afternoon sunshine.
.x. .x. .x.
Later that evening, after the last of the guests had left, Vegeta followed Bulma upstairs. Before they hit the bed, she held him close to her and thanked him for putting up with her.
"Putting up with you?" he frowned. "Bulma," he sighed and touched his forehead to hers. Vegeta whispered in Saiyan.
She leaned back and stared into his eyes. "Those words, are they the same as the ones you said to me that night by the waterfall?"
He nodded and grasped her left hand. She looked a bit puzzled as he slipped her ring off her finger. He held it up to her and she caught the light glinting off an inscription inside.
"This was on the note…" she looked to him, pleadingly. "What does it mean, Vegeta?"
He put the ring back on and kissed her hand. "It's something very hard for Saiyans to say, but they only have to say it once. 'I can't do without you. You are my queen. My life. Forever.'"
Things returned to relative normal in the Capsule household. Dr. Briefs returned to the great beyond and Mrs. Briefs went back to Florida. Trunks noticed that although they still bickered about the stupidest things, he knew his mother and father had been bonded by this experience in a way he would probably never fully comprehend.
He came into the kitchen one day with the mail. 'They're so weird', he thought, watching them snap at each other about who finished the milk and didn't tell anybody. They never seemed to bring him into it. He tossed the mail on the table and sat down, smiling. 'I'm not telling them I finished it!' When they were done and Vegeta had gone off to the gravity chamber, Bulma blew her bangs up with a sigh and rummaged through the mail.
"I swear, you'd think if you finished the milk, you'd at least tell a person..."
Trunks suddenly felt guilty. "Uh, Mom... I finished the milk."
His mother did not respond. She poured over a bill she had just opened. Suddenly registering what he had admitted she said, "YOU did!? Did you do this too?" She flashed the statement in front of him. Trunks grabbed it and raised an eyebrow at the total.
"Seven hundred forty-two Zeni? No!"
"Are you sure? You weren't exactly Mr. Honesty about the milk..."
"Yeah. I'm sure. I didn't rent these."
Bulma reexamined the bill. "…for late fees on The Wedding Singer, Four Weddings and a Funeral, The Graduate, Runaway Bride, Pretty Woman, My Best Friend's Wed..." she read of the titles, perplexed. 'Who could have possibly…? Oh Kami…' "…National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation?!?"