AN: Not written one of these in a while. Enjoy.
The sun is up. It has been for hours. And yet I'm still hiding beneath deep blue covers on a bed that is sickeningly familiar while being unfamiliar at the same time. This is my room. I was given my own room outside of the nursery when I was four. I can still remember the fresh smell of paint as it was redecorated, the baby blue and white walls repainted. It was a birthday treat, and I had loved it.
My covers had been dark blue, like these. The carpet a plush teal that sprung beneath your toes. Windows framed with the same blue curtains. It made me shiver. It almost made me cry with the feeling of homesickness. But in a sense I was home.
It was stifling hot outside, humid. It was even hotter where I lay. The windows were shut and I was cocooned in layers of blankets and pillows.
I didn't want to leave. Didn't want to leave this shell.
There were voices outside my room, hushed. My Grandpa and mother, talking quietly behind the door.
"Should we get him up? It's almost noon."
"I'm sure the boy wouldn't mind another half hour in bed. Leave him be for now Bulma."
"Well if you say so..."
Footsteps retreated, and I released the breath i didn't realise i was holding.
I was meant to be leaving at three in the afternoon. Meant to leave this world behind and return to the derelict, ruined world of my own. There were no friends that understood me. No one of my race, my blood. Only a broken woman with a broken heart. A shadow of her former self.
I'd seen her former self. The flamboyant, giddy woman downstairs was my mother. The pure form of my mother. My mother who had not seen her whole family torn apart for the better part of a decade. A woman who had loved and still loved.
I was startled from my musing as the door opened.
"Get up boy." Snapped a gruff voice.
Reluctantly I pushed the covers away, recognising the sound of my father. "What?"
He huffed, and left - leaving me confused and tousled from my sleep. Quickly dressing, I followed him down the hall. I was surprised when he led me to the back door, and even more surprised when he took off.
Mustering my Ki, I shot off after him - catching up easily with his leisurely pace. "Mind telling me what this is about?" I asked, confused.
"Shut up and follow." That's my father. Blunt and straight to the point.
How different the scenery was from up here. It was green and red, browns and delightful shades of grey. There was nothing dirty or sorrowful about it.
The towns were still quaint. The cities glorious; but there was no omnsious loom of the mountain ranges I was so use to. There was no smell of burning, of flesh. No bouts of screaming. There was no silence either. Trees had leaves to rustle - birds hand beaks to sing with. There was no sound of decay.
It was beautiful.
A sudden descent startled me from my thoughts, and we landed atop a quiet hill. The skyline of Orange City was visible, barely, it shivered in the heat and sun. The hill was in the middle of meadows and fields. There was nothing around for miles except sheep and cows.
"What is this place?" I asked, truly bewildered.
"Hn. Just a place." Was that it?
"Just a place. Huh. You come here often?"
He sat down, settling himself beneath the shade of a huge sycamore. "No."
"Oh." Sitting beside him, i admired the view. "So why did we come here?"
There was no answer.
"Well. That explains it." I was trying to keep this cheerful.
"Do you ever miss this?" he suddenly asked, not taking his eyes off of the city.
"Miss? Miss what?" I knew what he was getting at - but the abruptness of the question had me intrigued.
"This. This world."
So he wanted this kind of talk. "I didn't know it. My first time coming to this timeline was the first time I ever saw this. Any of this. But; I suppose if I had known it - I'd miss it." There was no movement. Nothing to say that he had even heard my answer. "Do you miss it?"
"Hn." I had a feeling there'd be no answer.
My thoughts flickered back to his question. Did I miss this? Would I? Without a doubt I would. But - in time, my world would heal itself. And perhaps in my lifetime I could see something that looked similar to this.
"No." So he answered. "I miss my people - but not my world. The Saiyans had more honour than humans."
"I can believe that. But not all humans are honourless." I argued. He simply nodded.
My watch beeped. One o'clock. I had two hours left in this world. Two hours. That was it. Then my holiday was over.
"Trunks." His voice cracked a little, but he still stared intently at the horizon - at the shimmering city.
"Huh?" Never once had I heard this man apologise. "What for?"
He turned to me then - and at once I saw the haunted look in his eyes. The ebony orbs were tainted, glassy, as if they were hurting. "I'm sorry I was not strong enough to protect you and your mother."
And then he stood, and walked away - leaving me in a stunned silence contemplating his words. He bent his knees to take off, and then it hit me what had just happened. Quickly, I got to me feet - my hands clenched in determination.
"Vegeta Sensei!" I cried, making him turn. He more than likely didn't expect me to call him my teacher. "Tousan." I echoed, quieter.
He stood, waiting, watching a boy bow his head in sadness. Watching me battle with my words. Watching me thinking of something meaningful to say. I couldn't think of anything that could match what he had said, that he didn't already know.
"Thank you for letting me be your son." I whispered. He nodded, the corners of his mouth tugging into a small smile. What had needed to be said had been; and there was no more need for words.
He was gone by the time i finally raised my head and wiped the wetness from my eyes. He was barely a speck in the distance, and i watched until he disappeared.
My journey back to Capsule Corp was slow and lonely. There I was met with a leaving party that made my smile, but also made my heart ache.
I would be leaving them all. I would be leaving this whole world behind only to return to hell.
My smile was strained as I left the room, cheeks hurting from pretending so much. I'd told them I had to gather my things, that I'd be down in a quarter of an hour. It was only then that I relaxed - my eyes trailing to the stairs that would take me to my room. My father hadn't been at the party. Which hadn't really bothered me. It would have made no difference.
The room was as I had left it. Silent and cold. I had no luggage to pack. Everything I needed was in my breast pocket in my capsule case. I just wanted to escape all the faces. All the laughs and smiles. They'd break me.
I could hear a commotion downstairs, and again looked to my watch. Two forty. I had twenty minutes. Twenty minutes of this freedom. And yet I felt it was taking me prisoner. Intoxicating my soul. These laughs and joyous games making sure to haunt me.
I'm tired of being haunted.
The view from my room is the same as always. A little more green. But essentially the same. The sky is blue, peaceful. Not grey and haunting. It does not flash periodically. There are people outside in this world.
As I finally venture downstairs and onto the lawn; I begin to question my choices.
I could stay here, in this bountiful earth with both a father and a mother to love me. I could stay here and go to school, a proper one - with teachers and books and children to hang out with. I could stay here where the days are bright and the air does not smell of smoke and dust. I could stay here where my best friend is alive and healthy, and where my friends are always around me.
Or I could go home. Back to where my only friend is my mother, who cries herself to sleep at night - holding close something that reminds her of my father. Usually me. I could go home and free my world from the devils that have tormented it for over a decade; only to be faced with a world starved of hope and salvation. A world I would have to spend years teaching how to trust again. A world where I am the only one of my kind. Where I am faced with memories of what it could have been.
The decision is like a swing, and as I chat with Gohan and laugh at his small jokes, I resist the urge to tell him that I'm not going back.
Because I know that there is a reason I must not stay.
My mother comes to say goodbye, trying to hide the tears that pool her eyes. I give one last smile to the child in her arms. The child that will one day grow up to be myself.
He is one of the reasons I cannot stay. It would not be fair. For a moment I am jealous of the bundle of flesh and blood that she holds close to her heart; until I tell myself it is ridiculous. I can not be jealous of myself.
The time machine looms closer; and with every step towards it the breath catches in my throat. I cannot do this. I love this world too much. I can now touch it, can stroke my hands across the smooth steel, warmed by the sun.
It's not too late, I can turn back and refuse to leave - burn the machine so that I can live a life everything I have ever wanted it to be.
But as I climb into the cockpit and input my equations; I realise that there is a reason I cannot stay.
For as I waved one last time to my friends and family, all smiling and laughing to see me off - I remembered that my mother, my real mother, would be smiling and laughing to see me return.
I know that if I don't return - she will sit by the window staring out into the horizon, watching the broken skyline fade with the sun each night, waiting for me to finally come home and relieve her torment.
For that I am thankful.