Gohan broke the pack of balls with what appeared to be a rather vicious strike. Three of the solid coloured balls rolled into the pockets. He looked at his friend who he was playing against with a smile.
"I shouldn't let you break..." He mumbled. "Have you ever thought about competing?"
"Nah. It's just for fun." Gohan spoke as he lazily pocketed another ball.
"Don't you ever get bored though? I mean, there can't be anyone that you know who can compete with you. I can tell right now that you aren't even trying but I doubt that I'll get a touch in this game."
The saiyan dropped another ball into one of the far pockets and grinned. "And that's why I don't make you pay for the table. But I do have someone who I play against who is pretty good."
"Oh yeah, who's that?"
"Just one of my dad's...old friends." Gohan smiled. He wasn't sure if he could call Vegeta one of his dad's old friends, but Gohan thought that maybe if Goku had been alive since the Cell games, then maybe they would be. Maybe.
He had started to play when he was a lot younger, even before his teenage years, when he had stumbled across a pool table in a staff room at Capsule Corporation. He watched two employees play a sloppy game, before asking if he could play. One of them kindly agreed, handing him a short cue that was designed for small adults. Even on the full sized table he had beaten the man easily. Apparently Gohan was a natural.
And then when Gohan's mother sent him to high school in West City, where he stayed with Bulma in the week, he had played constantly. Bulma even got a brand new table to go in the room that he stayed in.
He had been surprised to discover that Vegeta was also an avid player, the man having found the exact same table at almost the exact same time. In the weeks after Goku died, the saiyan prince had no will to fight and found fulfilment in other areas.
After that, the pair played whenever possible, sometimes even forsaking training. Gohan guessed thaa t he was pretty good because of the control that he had over his body, and his powerful grasp of physics and maths.
So here he was, relaxing in the hotel bar the evening before the biggest school athletics meet in the country. Looking around he saw students from all over, not just his own school. The staff had decided against throwing the dozens of underage kids out of the bar, due to the retribution that might be brought upon them. None of them were actually drinking any alcohol anyway.
Gohan missed a shot on purpose to give his friend, Will, a chance.
"Nice shot." He spoke, as the ball was sunk. Gohan turned as he felt a presence behind him. A tall blond male had strode up, flanked by three of his friends.
"We want the table." He said cockily.
"Fine, just wait until we're finished." Gohan replied amicably.
"We'd rather have it now." He said as he reached out to pick up the cue ball. Gohan reached out quickly and grabbed his wrist.
"Back off blondie before I crack this cue across your face." Will threatened, as Gohan let go. The boy stumbled back a little, but his friends supported him.
"Please just wait until we're finished. Then the table will be all yours." Gohan said, still in a friendly manner.
An idea struck into the mind of Sharpener, the blond boy rather quickly. He'd just lost face in front of a big load of people that he would be around for the next couple of days. He wasn't interested in a fight, he wasn't a thug. And besides, that skinny kid's grip had been pretty strong. Now when he looked at the boy he didn't seem so skinny, he actually looked sort of intimidating.
So to regain some of his lost honour, he gave them a proposition. "How about, instead of giving us the table, you give me a game, either of you, it doesn't matter." He thought himself to be a pretty damn good player, and irrationally thought that if he annihilated this guy, they'd all run away crying.
Two more of Gohan's friends had shown up, one named Bill, the other Phil. Now the numbers were a little more even. Not that Gohan was worried about a fight, but it stabilised things somewhat.
Gohan looked around to Will, who just shrugged his shoulders and said, "might as well just get it over with now."
Gohan nodded and went over to the coin slot, placing in a one zeni coin. The balls rolled down the chute, and Gohan went around to set them up.
"Do you want to break?" He asked.
"No, I'll let you." Sharpener said with a chuckle.
"Big mistake." Whispered Will.
"How about we make this worth something?"
"You mean, like money?" Gohan questioned fairly innocently. He didn't really want to take this poor, unsuspecting boy's money.
"Yeah, fifty zeni sound all right to you?" Gohan swiftly shook the boy's hand before breaking off.
Sharpener's jaw hung agape. He was standing in exactly the same position as he had been in when Gohan began playing. And now he was about to lose.
"Eight-ball, far right corner." Gohan stated as he potted the aforementioned ball into the aforementioned pocket. Gohan's friend's erupted into laughter and cheered the boy.
Gohan turned to his opponent. "Sorry about that, but I don't have fifty zeni on me right now so I couldn't have paid you if I lost."
"Yeah, pay up blondie!" Will shouted.
The blond gulped, and reached for his wallet. He didn't want any trouble, this kid was frightening. Upon handing over the notes, he turned and whispered to his friend quietly. "Let's go get Videl."
"What do you want Sharpener?" Videl was sitting with Erasa and a couple of the other girls that were on the athletics team of Orange Star High in a tv room inside the hotel.
"We went to go and play pool in the bar, and some guys stole fifty zeni off me."
"Well, that'll teach you not to go into hotel bars when you're underage, won't it?"
"But they were just kids like us, probably here for the meet tomorrow. Are you going to let some bullies get away with it?"
The dark haired girl sighed and stood up. "It isn't like you can't afford it, but theft is theft I suppose. Come on girls, I could use some back-up." They all followed her lead. Obviously they weren't there to help her take these bullies on, but she liked having them around just in case. Not many people would start fights with girls.
Gohan heard Will groan and turned to face the way in which he was facing. He saw the blond and his three friends following a group of girls that were striding quickly towards themselves.
The one that appeared to be leading them was the small girl at the front. She walked purposely and he noticed the confidence of her stride. His jaw dropped and he blushed a little. She was probably the prettiest girl that he had ever seen.
Gohan saw as the boy that he had beaten at pool pointed directly at himself and spoke something inaudible. But Gohan was in fact rather adept at lip reading, and knew that he had said "that's him".
The males hung back as she made her way up to him. "You stole some money from that guy. Are you going to give it back or am I going to have to force you to do it?"
"I can't believe that you went crying to your litle girlfriend just because my friend beat you!" Will shouted over to Sharpener.
"That idiot is NOT my boyfriend, nor is anyone else!" The petite female screamed. "You all got that?" She seethed through clenched teeth, staring at them all one by one. She never allowed herself to be associated with boys in that way.
Without warning, she began to delve her hand into one of Gohan's pockets, without realising the implications of the act. A chorus of cheers and shouts erupted, and Gohan pulled her hand away as she came dangerously close to...things.
"Whoa! Slow down there honey." He said as he blushed an even deeper crimson.
"Don't get any ideas you pervert, I'm just trying to get his money back so that I don't have to listen to his whining."
"I think she likes you, Gohan." Bill said, but regretted his action straight away as she focused her attention on him.
"Say that again and I'll kick your ass!"
"Why do I get the impression that at the end of every one of your sentences lies an exclamation mark?" Gohan asked.
Phil stepped forward and tried to be diplomatic about things. "Your friend challenged mine, and it was him who wanted to make it for money. It isn't our fault that he's such a sore loser."
"Whatever, just give me the money."
Gohan pulled the notes from his back pocket and fanned the girls face with them. She made a grab but he was far too quick, lifting them high above her head. She took a step back, crossing her arms over he chest. She looked him in the eye, and he held her gaze.
There was something about her eyes, something that he couldn't explain, and he couldn't remove his gaze from them.
"I know who you are." He said finally. He turned to his friends and spoke. "You know that this is Videl Satan, right?"
"She ain't the police."
"Yeah, that's your money, you won it fair and square."
Videl turned to her classmate. These guys didn't seem to be budging from the idea that the money had been won, not stolen, even in the face of her identity. "Be honest Sharpener, is this true?"
He tried pretending to ignore her, and that was all the proof that she needed. Now she would have to apologise. She hated to apologise.
"It looks like I should be saying sorry to you."
"No problem." Gohan held the cash in front of him for her to take. "But I'd rather that you just gave them back to him, I don't need them, and I don't need any trouble."
"If you're sure...?"
"Absolutely." She took the money slowly, and threw it on the ground behind her, where Sharpener scrambled to pick it all up.
"Sorry again, and maybe I'll see you tomorrow." He nodded as she turned to walk away with her friends, smacking the blond on the back of his head as she passed, knocking him further down. Gohan watched her until she had turned a corner, and hoped sincerely that he would see her again.
This is just a two chapter story that I just wrote on a whim. If you have any questions about the timeline or why this situation has happened just leave a logged in review or an email address if it is anonymous.
Plus, I think that a Gohan really would be good at a game like pool, since he and Goku probably got over the initial problems of self control during the Cell Games.