Chapter 49: Looking Ahead
Bulma hummed softly to herself. She was laying out in the thick grass of one of her gardens in Venova. She was hidden from the world in the tall grass. She was also sure no one knew where she was. She chuckled a bit at the thought.
No one but Vegeta, she mused. She inhaled and stretched her arms out to either side of her. This is so relaxing. When was the last time I relaxed like this?
"A queen should not be frolicking about in the dirt," a gruff voice said. Bulma smiled but did not open her eyes.
"It only took ten minutes from the time I disappeared. That's a new record for you. I'm impressed." Bulma started to move. She paused when she felt something next to her left arm. Bulma looked to her left and saw a familiar sight. "I remember that flower," she whispered.
"Well, take it. I hate carrying such things," Vegeta said. Bulma smirked and reached up for the flower. Vegeta looked away from her; he could feel the look she was giving him. "Stop looking at me like that, woman."
"I can't help it, Vegeta. It was very sweet of you to bring me a flower. You've only done it once before. It's considerate." Bulma reached up and grabbed his hand. She pulled him down. "Lay with me."
"Woman, I'm not going to lay in the dirt with you," Vegeta said as he allowed himself to be pulled to the grass. Bulma released him and put the flower in her hair. Then she glanced up at the red sky. She felt Vegeta rest uncharacteristically on her stomach.
"I thought you didn't want to lay in the dirt with me," Bulma said, rubbing his scalp.
"Hn," Vegeta said. Bulma laughed and sighed contentedly.
"Let's stay like this forever..."
Three Years Later...
Vegeta stared at his son. The five-year-old was staring defiantly at the muddy ground while avoiding his father's eyes at all costs. Vegeta sighed and looked over at the older boys that Trunks had been fighting with. While his son was moderately bruised and beaten, these boys looked like they had been through a war and back. The sad part about it was that the older boys were definitely OLDER; they had to be at least 15 or 16. Vegeta resisted the urge to smirk as the instructor approached him. He gave him his attention.
"Your highness," the man said with a head nod.
"What is the problem now? I'm tired of being called down here every time the boy gets into a fight," Vegeta said, sounding irritated. The instructor nodded fervently.
"Prince Trunks is an excellent student. He is everything you want in a young pupil," he said. Vegeta sighed.
"So that's it? Why am I really here... again?" Vegeta asked.
"His majesty is very... touchy about his appearance. While the boys his age don't bother him much about it, the older boys do."
"You mean to tell me that my son, the prince, is getting picked on? By teenagers? Those boys are more than twice his age," Vegeta said. The man nodded timidly. Vegeta crossed his arms and glared at Trunks. Trunks wiped blood away from his mouth while still glaring at the mud as if it was invading his space. Then Vegeta looked back at the instructor. "Does the boy go looking for fights?"
"Prince Trunks never starts the fights..." The instructor looked over at the older boys as he trailed off. Vegeta looked at them as well and understood immediately.
"But he finishes them." Vegeta faced the instructor. "There's only so much the boy will take. He's not used to being made fun of. I will talk to him. In the meantime, do not give the boy any special treatment. He still gets treated the same as everyone."
"But, your majesty, couldn't I just sep..."
"No special treatment," Vegeta reiterated as he made his way over to Trunks.
Trunks shifted his weight from his left foot to his right foot. He wished Goten were here. Training was not fun if he was not with his best friend. He hated the fact that Goten was a year younger and would not start until he had already been there for a year. They did everything together and this was the first time since they were babies that they were apart.
Trunks was brought out of his thoughts by a shadow looming over him. He squeezed his eyes shut, knowing who it was already.
"Look at me, boy," Vegeta said sternly. Trunks flinched at his father's harsh tone with him. He squeezed his fists together and looked up. Vegeta, although he was not very tall in any sense of the word, seemed like a giant among men to Trunks. Right now, as Vegeta stared down his nose at his son, it made Trunks feel much smaller than he actually was.
"Hello, Father," Trunks said quietly.
"Don't give me that meek voice, boy. That only works on your mother." Vegeta sighed. "What is with the unnecessary fighting, boy? Your mother would have a fit if she saw the way you look now."
Trunks let out a big sigh of relief. So his father was not mad at him. He seemed far more concerned with what his mother would think if she saw his condition. Trunks looked down at himself. He looked back up at Vegeta and shrugged.
"They were making fun of me. They said my hair was the color of flowers and that I probably smelled like one, too. They called me havling or something like that..."
"They called you what?" Vegeta cut off Trunks, his eyes narrowing. Trunks recognized the swift change in tone. He swallowed; had he said something wrong?
"They called me havling. I think that's what they said," Trunks said, completely mispronouncing the word again.
"The word is half-ling, son." Vegeta sighed. Trunks nodded. He knew it had to mean something bad, but he did not dwell on it. "The next person who calls you that, you can beat their face in until you can't tell what they look like anymore," Vegeta said.
"But, what if I don't want to, Father?" Trunks asked. Vegeta smirked.
"Trust me, boy. You'll want to." Vegeta lifted his son's chin to take another look at his face. Trunks only had a busted lip and his cheek was a little swollen. Other than that, he was perfectly fine. "Try to stay out of trouble. The next time I'm called away from the palace, I'm bringing the woman."
"You're not taking me with you? But, I want to go home," Trunks whined. Vegeta gave him a stern eye. Trunks bit his lip. He looked back down at the ground. Vegeta sighed, knowing the boy was holding back tears. He could tell that he missed Bulma.
"If I get Kakarrot's spawn to come down here will you stop all this nonsense?" Vegeta sighed out. Trunks looked up and nodded. Vegeta shook his head. "Get back to the barracks."
Spoiled brat. Just like the woman, Vegeta thought as he watched Trunks run off. He saw a few boys give Trunks evil looks. Then they looked over at him. Vegeta strutted over to them and stood before them.
"Who had the balls to call my son, your future king, a halfling?" Vegeta asked, his eyes roaming over the group of teenagers. They all avoided looking directly at the clearly infuriated king. Vegeta nodded and grabbed a random boy off of the ground. The teenager yelped as the angry king took his tail and pulled it completely off. The group of boys all winced as the teenager fell to the ground, reeling in pain. Vegeta threw his tail to him. He then looked at the other teenagers. "Let this be a warning. His tail will grow back. But, you only get one. Next time, the ass beating won't come from my son."
"Yes, sire," the teenagers said. Vegeta turned on his heel and stalked off.
Bulma was looking over a business deal with another planet in the throne room. It was relatively silent in the large, empty room. The only noises came from outside the room where servants were either talking or ordering around other servants. Bulma sighed, trying to focus on the small print on the paper she was reading.
It's ridiculous how popular these gravity rooms have become. You'd think I was selling the key to immortality or something, Bulma thought as she looked at the number of gravity rooms this particular planet had ordered.
"Brolly, the emperor of Kaigyo-sei wants three thousand gravity rooms. He even gave ME a deadline for when he wants them." Bulma turned to look at her trusty bodyguard. "Has he lost his mind? No one gives Queen Bulma a deadline," she said.
"Emperor Kai is an impatient man. Perhaps you should agree to his terms. How much is he willing to pay?" Brolly asked. Bulma shrugged, but she looked down on the paper. Her eyebrows rose when she saw the hefty sum.
"A fair amount for the time deadline he's giving me. No one else in the galaxy has this technology, so it's not like he can just go to some other conglomerate and see what they cost. I'll see what I have and then get started. Do I have any other orders?" she asked. Brolly handed her a packet. Bulma looked in it and frowned.
"Repairs," he said. Bulma pulled out a list and looked at it.
As Bulma was reading the list, Vegeta entered the throne room noisily. He stormed up to his chair and sat down in a huff. Bulma continued looking at the list of repairs. After a few moments of silence, she sighed.
"So, how is Trunks?" she asked happily. Vegeta looked at his wife. She was still not looking at him.
"He was fighting needlessly with teenagers," Vegeta said plainly. At this, Bulma looked up. Her mouth had dropped open and her expression showed her concern. Before she could inquire, Vegeta held up a hand. "Relax, woman. The teenagers were the ones who took the beating. The boy is pretty good for a five-year-old kid."
"Vegeta, you shouldn't encourage him to fight kids twice his size and more than twice his age. He could get seriously hurt. My poor baby..." Bulma whispered the last sentence. Vegeta rolled his eyes.
"Can I finish?" he asked. Bulma looked back at him and nodded. "It turns out that the right button to push on the boy is the one about his appearance."
"Appearance? You mean his hair and his eyes?"
"Stop interrupting! Yes, woman. The boy also said they called him a halfling," Vegeta said. Bulma gasped and Brolly stiffened up at the term. "He obviously had no idea what it meant and was far more concerned with being picked on about his hair and eyes."
"Did you tell him what it meant?" Bulma asked quietly.
"No. I told him to beat the hell out of the next person who calls him one." Vegeta sighed. "I also pulled out one of those teenagers' tails."
"Vegeta!" Bulma yelled.
"What? It was just to scare them. It'll grow back," Vegeta said as he relaxed back in his throne. Bulma shook her head.
"Did you bring Trunks back to stay up here?"
"Why the hell not?"
"Because he's never going to grow a thick skin if he stays up under you all the time!" Vegeta sat forward and looked at Bulma. Brolly took this as his cue to vacate the room. Whenever they fought about how to raise Trunks, it always ended in one of two ways: one of them storms away in anger or they end up making up, right then and there. "You should've seen the boy's teary eyes when I told him he couldn't come back to the palace with me," Vegeta said.
"So? He just misses living here with us! Who could blame him? I wouldn't want to spend my nights in mud, either!" Bulma yelled in Vegeta's face. Vegeta nodded.
"Right. And I suppose him whimpering like a little human child is what you expect him to do, right? You're turning the future king of this empire into a little..."
"Don't you dare call my son that, Vegeta," Bulma said in a deadly voice. Vegeta smirked.
"A what? Huh? A pussy?" he whispered. Bulma frowned and raised her hand to slap Vegeta. He caught it easily. "I wasn't going to call MY own son that, woman. I was going to say spoiled brat, which is exactly what he is."
"Trunks isn't... spoiled," Bulma whispered. She relaxed her hand and Vegeta let her go.
"Yes, he is. I have to convince your harpy friend to let her boy go to the camp just to appease the brat. But," Vegeta sat back in his throne again, "our son is by no means a pussy. He proved that by beating the shit out of six teenagers."
Bulma fiddled with the edge of the paper she was holding. She bit her lip and looked at Vegeta. He was sitting with his eyes closed. Bulma leaned forward, thinking he was in one of his meditative states. Before she knew it, she was in his lap and he was holding her around her waist.
"How did you do that?" she asked.
"Magic fingers," Vegeta said.
"I didn't know you were a comedian."
"I'm a king, not a comedian." Vegeta leaned in to kiss her. Bulma put a finger to his lips, stopping him. Vegeta looked up at her, looking slightly disappointed. "What?"
"I have a question." Bulma paused for a moment. It was as if she was thinking on how to word the question. Vegeta sighed after a few minutes and leaned forward to kiss her again. "Wait, Vegeta," Bulma said.
"Well, what is it, woman? You try my patience," Vegeta said.
Here goes nothing, Bulma thought as she took a deep breath. She met Vegeta's dark eyes. He just crossed his arms and glared back at her.
"How do you feel about another child?" Bulma asked. Vegeta raised an eyebrow.
"Woman, there can only be one heir," he said. Bulma nodded.
"I know, I know. But, still," she sighed, "what if, you know?"
Vegeta continued to give Bulma a blank stare. She finally looked away from him, feeling somewhat uncomfortable. Vegeta noticed this and made her turn to face him again.
"I don't really mind it, but it will only bring trouble," Vegeta said. Bulma smiled and hugged him. She wrapped her arms around his neck and squeezed as tight as she could. Then she stopped and looked back at Vegeta.
"But, it was so hard for me to have Trunks," she said. Vegeta shrugged. He took Bulma's paper away from her and incinerated it. "Vegeta, I needed that!" she yelled. She gave another little yelp as Vegeta picked her up.
"You want another brat." Vegeta walked over to a window and kicked it open. He looked towards where their suite was. "We need to get started." Bulma laughed as he jumped into the air.
AN: Ya'll are seriously mistaken if you think that's where it just ENDS. That's where THIS story ends, but that leaves SOOO much more to tell, ya smell me? So, thanks for reading this one, and look out for the next one. C'ya!