Author – cornerofmadness
Disclaimer – so not mine, all rights belong to Minekura
Timeline – no real spoilers, set before all the ugliness
Pairing – none, Kenren & Goku centric
Rating – PG-13
Summary – Kenren learns exhaustion and gun safety don't mix
Author's Note – written for the Saiyukitime challenge, prompt –Kenren, took 35 minutes to complete, concrit welcome, thanks to those who pointed out the one embarrassing typo….
Everything hurt. Kenren dragged into his place, dropping into the first available chair. Any battle you walk away from was a good one or so the saying went, but Kenren knew there was no such thing as a good battle. The one he had just walked away from had been worse than most.
He hadn't been badly hurt and the various cuts and bruises had been dealt with but nothing but a good hard sleep would help him now. The ache seemed to go down to the very marrow of his bones. Heedless of the gore dried and crusted on his clothing, ignoring the rank scent of his own sweat and all the blood, Kenren slipped his holster off and thought about putting the gun away in its safe. He just needed to take a deep breath and get his feet back under him. Instead, his eyes slammed shut and he was snoring in the chair before he could fully form the thought about securing his weapon.
X X X
Goku pushed into the room. Konzen was on a rampage. He hadn't meant to drop the vase of flowers he had brought for Konzen all over the desk. Goku didn't know ink could run until now. While trying to find a good hiding spot, he overheard Kenren was back. Kenren was always so much fun so Goku went to find him.
"Ken-nii-chan!" Goku cried and the man stirred in his chair but didn't get up. Goku studied his friend for a moment then resisted the urge to peel open his eyes to see if he was sleeping. He had done that with Konzen once and had gotten swatted hard.
Goku sat cross-legged on the floor next to Kenren, hoping his friend would wake up soon. Seeing the holster, Goku remembered how neat that gun was. He slipped it out of the leather and looked at its golden sheen. Goku trailed a finger over the cool metal then peered down the barrel wondering how the bullets came out. Resting it against his chest, he played with the little metal knobby thing inside another circle of metal.
Suddenly a hand grabbed his hand holding the gun hard, yanking upwards. Startled, Goku yelped, looking up into Kenren's angry face. "Never play with this!" the man roared. "This is not a toy, Goku!"
Never expecting Kenren to yell – that's what Konzen did- the confused boy cried.
X X X
Kenren watched fat tears roll away from golden eyes. He hadn't meant to hurt Goku's feelings but that was better than the alternative. If he hadn't woken up when he did, Goku would have pulled the trigger and buried a slug in his own chest. Setting the gun on the table, Kenren painfully levered himself onto the floor. He wrapped his arms around Goku, pulling him close. Kenren whispered in the boy's ear, "I'm sorry, Goku. Don't cry, little buddy." Kenren rocked the frightened boy, harder to do than it looked with all those horrible chains on him, making him weigh more than the general. His hands, red-brown dried blood flaking from them, soothed Goku's back. "I didn't mean to scare you. It's just that my gun is very dangerous. You could have hurt yourself or me very badly with that."
"Didn't mean to," Goku sniffled, snaking his arms around Kenren's back, the chains grating over already sore flesh.
Kenren tried not to flinch. "I know you didn't mean any harm." He ruffled Goku's hair, feeling that diadem cool under his fingers. "Promise me you won't play with that again."
"I won't. I'm sorry," Goku mumbled.
Kenren let him go. "It's okay. I'm not mad at you. You just scared me. Why are you here, Goku?"
"Konzen was yelling again but you're fun so I came to play," Goku replied, wiping his eyes on his sleeve.
Kenren smiled. "We can play but not until later, okay? I'm very tired right now." He got to his feet and went to his desk. Kenren pulled out some children's books he had borrowed from Tenpou and some colored pencils and a tablet. "Here you go, why don't you stay here with these until Konzen gets his britches out of a twist. I'm going to take a nap."
"Okay Ken-nii-chan. I'll be real quiet," Goku promised.
Kenren smiled at him and ruffled the boy's hair. He locked up his gun then, stripping down to his boxers, he slipped under the sheets still dirty. Consciousness caught up with him at some point only for Kenren to find a little monkey sleeping next to him, a picture book clutched in one hand and his other hand pressed firmly against his mouth, sucking his thumb in his sleep. Kenren thought about the battles down below, of the things brewing in the heavens and about little boys who didn't seem too heretical to him and wondered if they weren't all insane. Draping a protective arm around Goku, Kenren drifted off to sleep once more.