Author's note: I don't want to ruin the mood at the end of this chapter, so the note is here. I'm considering a sequel, but it totally depends on the feedback I get from this. The song in this chapter is called 'Endless Rain' by X Japan- WOO! I love this song, the fic was actually thought up while I was listening to this piece of music, and I based the whole story around this, the ending.


~Tomo



********
I'm walking in the rain
Yuku ate mo naku kizutsuita karada nurashi
Karamitsuku koori no zawameki
Koroshi tsuzukete samayou itsu made mo
Until I can forget your love


Nemuri wa mayaku tohou ni kureta
Kokoro o shizuka ni tokasu
Mai agaru ai o odorasete
Furueru karada o kioku no bara ni tsutsumu
I keep my love for you to myself
*********


The darkness of the house, the emptyness was too incredible for Gohan to bear. As he walked to the bedroom he clicked on every light and opened every door, even knocking a few pillows off the chairs in an attempt to fill the void. It was now just a structure, it was now a house again instead of a home.


He changed his clothes, trading slacks and a dress-shirt in for jeans and a tank top. As he lifted the chosen shirt he froze- it was one of his Piccolo-look alikes, one of the half dozen he owned that matched his mentor's color scheme.


How long had he been wearing these? Piccolo had branded him with his colors at age four, and ever since then the dark indigo cloth had been a symbol of what he loved, of his courage and his skill.


Slowly he lowered the shirt, the voices in his mind screaming again for attention. Piccolo betrayed him. Trunks loved him. Piccolo had always been there, but Trunks had always been kind. Piccolo had died for him.


Trunks loved him.


Tossing the shirt across the desk, Gohan found another. Green.


He threw that one aside as well and picked a safe, plain white shirt that reminded him of nothing.


The stairwell was quiet, the house achingly empty, and Gohan turned every radio in the house to a teenage-music station, one he would normally never listen to, but it was loud and pushed the thoughts out of his mind.


In the kitchen he knelt to pick out the tea kettle, only to find that it wasn't there. Surprised, Gohan stood and found it already on the stove top, though the water in it was cold. Turning around, Gohan eyed a glass on the breakfast table, and his heart skipped a beat. Someone had been here....


There was a note on the table.


Gohan stepped forward, breath quickening. With a trembling hand, he picked up the note and held it tightly for a moment. It was folded and white, and on the front two symbols were etched in curly, unfamilier-yet-unmistakable kanji- his name.


It was from Piccolo.


Gohan closed his eyes and forced himself to breathe. Should he read it? Somehow he knew that this slip of paper would set his mind one way or another, somehow he understood that the decision he made now would forever influence his life, his family...


He licked his lips and unfolded the note.


********
Endless rain, fall on my heart kokoro no kizu ni
Let me forget all of the hate, all of the sadness

It's a dream, I'm in love with you
Madoromi dakishimete
***********

Rain.

It fell through the wind, carressing the fabric of the sky and showering down to touch the breast of a newborn leaf. It plummeted about, battered by the mournful wind, it fell upon Capsule Corperation, upon the muddy cloth of Piccolo's cape, and upon the Son household.

Rain.

*******
Endless rain, fall on my heart kokoro no kizu ni
Let me forget all of the hate, all of the sadness
******


Trunks swallowed harshly as he entered the house. Despite the music and lights, he knew something was wrong.


When he found two notes folded together on the kitchen table, he knew he had lost.



******
I awake from my dream
I can't find my way without you


The dream is over
******


Plucking the first paper up, Trunks read his name on the front. With trembling fingers he opened it, smoothing the paper once before examining what it said.

~
'Torunkusu-

I'm sorry, Trunks, but I can't do this. You're an incredible friend and I'm sure there's someone perfect out there for you...I've finally realized why Pikoro-san and I have been fighting, and it's all my fault. I've complained so much because Piccolo won't change for me, without ever thinking about how I could change instead....Trunks, please understand, in a relationship you have to give and take, and I've given nothing and taken everything.

~Son Gohan'
~

He stopped reading, shocked. Give and take? But Gohan had never been happy! 'NO! Don't leave me like this, Gohan...' That was the end, terse and abrupt, but still an ending.

The second paper still sat there, like a cancer on the table, malignant. Trunks didn't want to touch it, but he felt overpowered to discover what simple words Piccolo had used to undo his hold over Gohan. Slowly he flipped the sheet open, and surmised the letter.


The paper was splotched here and there, and Trunks supposed the ink-blurred blobs were either tears or drips of rainwater off a pair of dangling antennae. The edges were creased and several large pools of ink adorned the page in places where Piccolo had set his pen for a moment to consider his words.


Trunks swallowed, then nearly dropped the letter as he read the first line.


'On this page I write my last confession...'


"Shit, he wouldn't..."


'I'm sorry. I don't understand what I've done wrong. Gohan,' a pause, a blot of ink, then two scratched out words, 'all I want is for you to be happy.' Trunks squinted, the handwriting was cramped and unpracticed, but he could still make out a few words. 'If Trunks can give you that' (something was blotted out here) 'then I hope you will enjoy your time together...'


Trunks frowned. What kind of letter was this? Piccolo sounded like he'd given up all hope of seeing Gohan again.


'Please forgive me- I will never be able to change into the lover you want, but I have always, always loved you.'


The name at the bottom was smeared and scribbled hastily. Trunks set the letter down, trying to ignore the empty feeling in his stomach. Was that it? Had he been defeated by a slip of paper?! Trunks let himself fall to his knees and pressed his face into his hands. "I shouldn't have tried this..." he whispered. "I shouldn't have tried to take him. I've only hurt Gohan...hurt myself...hurt Piccolo...how can I look my Gohan in the eye now?"


The splashing of the rain was almost musical, almos talive. It was a companion, someone with a voice and a sigh that would listen to the silent demands of the heartbroken saiya-jin.


Trunks let the water drizzle through him, tried to lose himself in it's comforting cadence, but his mind wouldn't slow. "Me," he whispered, "The son of Vegeta, miserable over....over....."


He shook his head and lifted into the air. "What will I do now?" For so many long years he had lusted over Gohan, and now there was nothing, nobody at all.


Trunks retreatead to his home, feeling like his very future had been ripped away.



***********
Koe ni naranai kotoba o kurikaeshite mo
Takasugiru hai iro no kabe wasugi satta hi no
Omoi o yume ni utsusu
Until I can forget your love
**********


Piccolo was there, perched high on a cliff face, eyes closed. Gritty water slid down his shoulders, but he made no movement, just settled there, a long blade in his hands. It was flecked with mud, like it's weilder, the blade was short compared to Piccolo but the perfect length for a child, despite the broken edge.


Thunder clapped overhead as Gohan landed, already drenched to the bone. Wiping his slick hair out of his eyes with one hand, he studied his lover's profile, unsure of how to proceed.


The narrow green eyes were closed, and an expression that might have been pain had been etched across his features. With the water splashed all about, Gohan couldn't be sure whether he was crying or the rain was playing tricks on the panes of his face.


For a moment, Gohan tried to recall why this place felt so familier. It took him a few seconds before he realized that indeed, this was the island Piccolo had first taken him to train on. This was the place they had learned so much...


He stared at the sword. "Pikoro-san...."


At first, Piccolo didn't move, save for the trembling of his shoulders. "Pikoro-san?" Gohan ventured again, wondering if he had been heard. After another second, Piccolo opened his eyes and stared feverishly at Gohan, unsure of the reality before him. It seemed incredible- after a few seconds, Piccolo's face twisted into the most hope-filled mask Gohan had ever seen him wear.


Gohan was shocked. Where was his impassive mentor, who never batted an eye for anything? This stranger before him looked vulnerable, pleading despite the broad physical appearance he wore.


Somehow that made him feel his choice was truly the correct one.


*******
Endless rain, fall on my heart kokoro no kizu ni
Let me forget all of the hate, all of the sadness


Endless rain, let me stay
Evermore in your heart
Let my heart take in your tears, take in your memories
********


"Pikoro-san," Gohan managed to whisper weakly, "what are you doing with that sword?" Piccolo glanced at the blade wordlessly, as if just noticing it for the first time. When no answer came, Gohan asked again. "What's it for?"


He knelt in the muck, watching Piccolo carefully. Half of him thought the namekusei-jin would be angry, and yet half of him was convinced Piccolo would steal him back protectively, being angry at Trunks.


He had not been prepared for this utter helplessness, the way Piccolo seemed to be sleepwalking-


"It's yours," his mentor said at last, softly. Gohan did a double take and realized that yes, that was the sword Piccolo had given him to protect himself, so many years ago. "I kept it."


Gohan licked his lips. "Pikoro...."


The other man looked away. "You should go. I've only made you unhappy...I'm sorry, Gohan," the voice cracked, gruff and dark though it was. "I can never be the lover you want."


Gohan moved closer on his hands and knees, mud squelching through his fingers. "Piccolo, you've always been the lover I want. I was just too...too self centered to realize...."


The two locked ebony eyes, two souls that had been bound by companionship, friendship and love. Slowly Piccolo opened his arms, questioningly, unsure of the response, and Gohan fled from the rain into his embrace, tucking himself into the familier curve of Piccolo's neck.


"I'm sorry, I'm sorry, please forgive me...I..." Gohan tighted the damp fabric of Piccolo's gi between his fingertips. "He's nothing to me. Nothing. I just...I'm so stupid...please..."


The namekusei-jin tightened his arms, listening to Gohan's breathing beneath the filter of rain-patter. "No. I'm foolish. I never told you how much I love you."


Gohan felt himself tense at the unfamilier words.


Piccolo stroked his hair, whispering the words passionately into Gohan's ear, bearing his soul open. "I was too scared, so scared that you would hate me for depending on you so much... I've never told you how you light up the world, how you are my only reason for living, my pride and joy and love....my Gohan..."


"I....I knew it all the time, Piccolo, if I had listened to myself..... I knew it all along."


The rain poured down, frigid and endless, but they clung together and were warm.


*******
Endless rain, fall on my heart kokoro no kizu ni
Let me forget all of the hate, all of the sadness


Endless Rain
*******