A/N: Yes, it's here. I hope all of you enjoyed this story playing out in real time, haha.
DISCLAIMER: This story is the only thing I own. Oh, and Dragonball Z. I totally own Dragonball Z.
It happened in darkness. The horrible pain attacked her lower abdomen in waves. Bulma sat up clutching her enormous belly. Her gasp woke up Vegeta who had been resting beside her. The pain struck once more and she inhaled sharply, squeezing her eyes closed.
In a moment she had been swept out of bed and into Vegeta's arms. Her memories of what happened later were lucky to exist, as they were mostly fuzzy, masked in the ensuing chaos.
Honking cars. Wind. Bright lights. Vegeta.
"Get her a room now!"
Finally, a soft bed. The bustle of hurried nurses. The gentle voice of her doctor.
"Relax Ms. Brief. Everything's fine."
The door kept opening and shutting. Why? Cool instruments touching her ears, chest, and stomach. Chair scraping on the floor. A needle in her hand and one in her spine. Her voice.
"How are we feeling? Still doing okay?"
Soft music overhead. Vegeta's lips on her forehead. A large TV on the wall playing a stupid soap opera. A mouthful of ice chips. Several workers bringing her pillows and blankets. Her bedside telephone ringing over and over. On speakerphone.
"Honey! Honey, how is everything? Oh, this is so exciting! I can't wait to see you and the baby! Your father and I are in the waiting room! They said we can't come in until you've had him! I'm not going to protest or anything because your father said you'd prefer us out here, but how rude! I love you, dear!"
Her forehead was sweating. Vegeta's hands had moved to her shoulders. A sheet was draped over her open legs. She could hardly feel the contractions anymore but she pushed. She pushed hard. The doctor had cupped his hands together. She pushed.
Bulma threw back her head. Her hair was flat against her head and cheeks. A nurse dug in her pocket and found a hair tie. The purple scrunchie provided instant relief. She closed her eyes.
"Push, Bulma. Come on!"
Her teeth clenched so hard she could have sworn they had receded back into her skull.
"You're doing great. Just a little more, alright? I can see the head!"
Bulma let out a roar so loud that the nurse closest to her put a hand to his ear and winced. Apologies were due later. For now, there was only pushing.
Vegeta's hands were no longer on her shoulders. They were on her back. He was holding her up when all she wanted to do was fall back.
"Please, get him out of me!"
A scuffle. Chair scraping backwards. Excited cries. A loud, piercing wail and a cheer.
Bulma felt tears sliding down her cheeks and they mingled with her sweat. She watched blurrily as Vegeta cut the umbilical cord on a screaming red newborn that was whisked away before she could see him. Instant anxiety.
"Vegeta, is he…"
"Stop worrying, woman. He's fine."
Her panic subsided. The nurse had the baby in his arms, wrapped in a fluffy, warm towel.
Bulma looked down at her newest creation. The baby's eyes were squinty in the harsh hospital lights but his mouth was wide open. A tuft of purple hair the color of her new hair bow peeked out from under the cloth. He was absolutely the most beautiful thing that she had ever seen.
"What are we gonna name the little guy?" asked a friendly nurse with a clipboard.
Bulma smiled as she looked over at Vegeta.
"I'd like to name him Trunks."
The Saiyan arched an eyebrow but said nothing.
"Trunks Vegeta Brief."
From his corner of the room, the father gave a tiny smirk.
Between the cooing of the woman's parents and the incessant wailing of his infant son, Vegeta had no peace. He sat patiently while doctors probed the woman with their equipment, watched in silence as her parents noisily celebrated in the hospital room and remained impassive while the woman argued with nurses who refused to let her walk around in her 'condition'. Finally, after three days of the madness, they were allowed to return home.
Now he stood in the hallway across from Bulma's bedroom. Inside she had been sleeping for several hours, her arms folded gently across Trunks who had also fallen asleep.
Vegeta walked inside and watched the two from a safe distance. The woman's parents had made it clear that she should not be disturbed and his own experience had taught him not to wake a slumbering baby without good reason. All the same, he felt exceptionally pulled to wherever they were. On some level he understood that the feeling was natural, but he could not help wishing it were not there.
The woman had awoken, her eyes blinking slowly as she yawned.
She smiled and motioned for him to come over to her. "Must get bored standing over there all the time by yourself."
"I'm fine, woman."
"I'm sure," was her response.
Vegeta walked over to the bed and gave his son a quick lookover. His tiny chest rose and fell rapidly as he breathed.
"Look," said the woman softly. "He has your smile."
Curiously, Vegeta peered once again at the baby. He wasn't smiling at all. He was scowling.
"Yes, well I suppose you think that's funny."
She did. She was laughing in her pillow. Suddenly she frowned, her smile turning into a grimace.
"What's the matter?" he asked, leaning over to examine her more fully. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary but he was too unfamiliar with the female body to lean on his own intuition.
Bulma closed her eyes. "My back is killing me. I think it has something to do with my boobs."
At the last word Vegeta's eyes quickly traveled downward. He had grown quite accustomed to the new size of the woman's breasts and took many opportunities to inspect them when he could.
"Plus it wouldn't hurt to lose a little weight," she said with another wince. "I thought it was supposed to fall off really quickly."
"You've just given birth to my heir," Vegeta told her firmly. "I'd be surprised if your body ever fully returned to normal."
Bulma's eyes widened to twice their normal size. It took a moment before Vegeta realized what he had said and its implications. The woman sat up and grabbed his shirt collar in both her hands.
"You had better take that back or you're going to be miserable for the rest of your life."
Her display of strength despite her condition was impressive.
"I take it back, woman. For now," he added once she had let him go.
"Good. Now I'm going back to sleep. Unless you want to keep talking and wake up this little bundle of joy."
Both Vegeta and Bulma looked over at Trunks who was still asleep but beginning to move, a sure sign that he'd be screaming for something soon enough. Vegeta grunted, annoyed that he was being asked to leave but willing to do so. Besides, it wasn't as if he'd be too far away.
He promptly left and closed her bedroom door. Then he took his place across from her room and leaned against the wall.
The two day old text message had gone unanswered. Yamcha knew that he should send the obligatory 'congratulations', but he hadn't felt up to it. He thought Bulma would understand, given their history and all.
So why did he keep thinking about it?
"Really, I don't know why you won't respond back," Puar said, flying into the living room and taking a seat next to him on the sofa. "It's not like she's asking you to be the baby's godfather."
Her response startled him. Puar had never been on Bulma's side before and he immediately said so. She frowned.
"I'm not on anyone's side," she said, flicking her tail. "I just don't think it's the end of the world to reply. Besides, you guys are still friends."
"I guess so," muttered Yamcha, flicking the TV on with the remote. "We haven't spoken to each other in awhile. It feels weird."
"Do what makes you happy," Puar said with a smile. "I'm sure Bulma will understand either way."
On the television screen a baseball game was in full swing. A pudgy man was running quickly across the bases and the crowd was going wild. Yamcha remembered that his baseball training sessions were going to be starting soon and he suddenly felt a lot happier. His life was a lot better than it had been, that was for sure. Also, he had been dating a lot of women and had pretty much forgotten about his ex-girlfriend until her text.
Yamcha thought he might even go see her but he didn't think about it for too long. His life might be awesome at the moment, but a glimpse of Bulma could derail his happiness in a heartbeat. It was a possibility at least.
No, it was better not to see her.
"You know, I'm glad that Bulma's happy," he told Puar. "Really."
"That's good to hear," she answered.
"No, I'm serious," Yamcha said indignantly. "I mean, maybe on some level I wish we would've worked out. But then I see her in this situation where she's sort of settling down and starting a family… and I'm sort of happy that's not me."
Puar's ears perked, but she remained silent.
"I'm not ready to be a dad. I don't think I ever will be. If it had been me and not you-know-who, I'd feel like my life was over."
"Don't sell yourself short, Yamcha," Puar said to him. "I think you'd be a great father."
He shrugged. "Better not to test that theory anytime soon."
In an instant, the tiny blue shape-shifter had transformed into a fat pink infant with curly blue hair. Yamcha thought it was kind of cute at first; it kind of looked like Bulma. Unfortunately it sounded a lot like her too, once Puar got into the role.
Yamcha instinctively covered his ears. Oh, man. He was luckier than he thought.
When Puar had given up on the baby act and returned to normal, she flopped down on the sofa and exhaled loudly.
"That is exhausting."
He pet her on the head. "Tell me about it. I don't know how people do it. Someone should really send Chi-Chi some flowers or something."
He refocused on the baseball game for the next half hour, making small talk with his furry best friend and downing cans of grape soda. It was incredibly relaxing and Yamcha was glad he had made himself take a few hours everyday to engage in indolence. He had been training nonstop to prepare for the Androids arrival and these moments helped him forget.
"STRIKE THREE!" shouted Puar, a willing participant in most of Yamcha's lazy endeavors.
Yamcha's phone began to buzz and he grabbed it. It was his alarm reminding him to meet up with Krillin later on for a quick sparring session at the Kame House.
He paused when he began to set down the phone and then looked at the screen again. He found Bulma's text message and read it to himself once again.
He's finally here… Thanks for everything Yamcha. You're amazing.
Yamcha stared for a long while, until the only thing he could see were green and gray boxes filled with dark text. He began tapping.
It was no problem. Congratulations.
He paused, then added something else.
I'm really happy for you.
Only two and a half months had gone by since the birth of her firstborn, but Bulma had gone straight into maternity overdrive. She was with Trunks all day long; he was with her while she ran errands, worked out, held phone conferences, etc. Bulma was well aware how crazy she was driving everyone. Even her sweet, doting mother had retreated from her several times, refusing to be in her daughter's path if she could help herself.
Now the blue-haired scientist stood hawk-eyed at the infant's crib, her back aching from standing for so long. She was wondering when it'd be a good time to take a rest. Trunks had been asleep for awhile now. In fact, she had sort of lost track of how long she had been watching over him.
"Well! I knew I'd find you in here."
It was her father in the doorway and he was dressed peculiarly for the day in a bright red polo and plaid golf pants. He even had a baseball cap on his head, smashing his hair onto his forehead.
"Before you ask," he said, obviously noticing her look of confusion, "I'm going to go golfing with a few guys I met at one of those conferences I attended. The silver lining I suppose."
Bulma winced. "You're not going to ask me to go are you? I really hate golfing, dad. It's on a list I have of things I refuse to do before I die."
Her father waved his hands in front of his face. "Certainly not. Especially not after… well, the last time we tried."
Some muddy golf balls and a waterlogged caddy came to mind and Bulma laughed.
"Actually I've come to see if you wouldn't mind looking over the lab for me while I'm gone? I have a lot of projects I'm overseeing at the moment and it'd help me a lot if you could check in every once in awhile."
The offer was tempting. Bulma had practically been living on the second floor of the house. But there was a pretty fair reason for that and she stuck to her guns.
"I can't leave Trunks here alone, dad," she reminded him, resting her elbows on the crib railing and staring at the sleeping baby. "He cries for me a lot."
Her father shrugged. "Thought I'd give it a shot. I have to be honest though dear. I think you'd be a bit more rested if you took some time off from watching the baby. Your mother and I are more than happy to look after little Trunks."
Dr. Brief walked over and placed an arm around her shoulder, looking into the crib.
"Your mother's even been complaining that she hasn't gotten to see enough of him!"
"You mean she hasn't gotten enough time to take pictures of him to show all of her friends," Bulma said firmly. "Even though she knows how quiet I'm trying to keep the whole thing."
It was ridiculous really that anyone with her last name try to stay away from the media, but Bulma had done just that. Furthermore, she had contracts with the hospital staff to keep her delivery completely private. If any mention was made to the press about anything regarding her pregnancy, their very expensive monthly salaries would immediately stop. Bulma wasn't necessarily accusing her mother of upsetting her quiet world, but Mrs. Brief did have a few questionable, loudmouthed acquaintances.
Her father looked put out as he leaned over the baby's crib.
"Oh well, I may as well admit it. I haven't seen enough of Trunks!"
Bulma gave her dad a puzzled look. "Really? Mom hasn't been sharing?"
Dr. Brief shook his head. "Not even a bit. You know your mother dear." He sighed. "Your hesitation comes from a good place, dear."
He kissed her cheek and turned to leave, but Bulma grabbed his sleeve. She felt her eye twitching. She must have picked that up from Vegeta. She knew what had to be done however, so she clenched both of her teeth and forced the next two sentences out.
"If you really want to, you can have Trunks for the night. Is that okay?"
Her father's woe turned into glee.
"I knew you'd come around!" he exclaimed, a bit too loudly perhaps.
The tiny, swaddled infant began to move, his arms dislodging themselves from between the folds of his fuzzy blue blanket. Then his slate gray eyes slowly opened.
"Why hello there Mr. Trunks!" her father exclaimed, reaching down to grab his grandson with both hands. "Are we finished with our nap? Yes we are!"
Resting on her father's shoulder, Trunks could barely move his own head, but he could certainly open his mouth. Bulma braced herself when he closed his eyes and threw his mouth open.
"Now, now Bulma," said Dr. Brief, patting the baby lightly on his back. "No need to worry. He's in very safe hands. Go enjoy the rest of the day! He's fine with his old grandpa!"
"What about golf, dad?" Bulma asked as her father gently guided her out of the nursery. "Won't the guys be disappointed?"
"They'll live," said her father with a smile, and he turned back into the room with a happy, gurgling baby on his shoulder.
His personal dungeon was lit red and gold; intense waves of heat made his vision blurry. A powerful lunge to his right threw his lithe body into the fiery blast of energy. His hands shot up to his chest and in an instant, the Saiyan prince had violently struck the ball of flames into the opposing wall.
The instant the burning sphere hit the paneling, large pieces of tile were melted through. Some fell onto the ground in fractured pieces while others turned to ash. When the blast of energy had fizzled out, there was a large, gaping hole on the side of the Gravity Room and anyone could see right in.
"Shit," Vegeta mumbled, his eyes adjusting to the bright light of earth's sun as it fell upon the floor in front of him.
"Lowering gravity from 400 to 300."
As the calm voice continued to announce the decrease in gravitational pull by increments of 100, Vegeta slowly felt his body become lighter and his vision became clearer. Unfortunately with this clarity came the sudden knowledge that he was in a lot of trouble.
And not a moment too soon.
From the basketball sized hole in the wall, Vegeta saw the woman's head. Her teeth were bared.
"What were you thinking?" she shouted as she stuck her head through the gap. "Do you know how long my dad and I worked on this?"
"Not nearly long enough," Vegeta muttered, turning his back on her, knowing full well she'd be coming in through the door to continue her shouting.
Less than thirty seconds later, the woman had found her way inside the Gravity Room, the look on her face less than friendly. She turned around and gave Vegeta a particularly stern look. It was one that he had been unfamiliar with lately since she was not around him very much, but recognized right away.
"Before you destroy my ears, woman," Vegeta said as he folded his arms against his chest, "I didn't do it on purpose. I'm stronger than I used to be."
He fully expected her to start yelling again, but to his surprise she did not. Instead she sighed and leaned against the wall near the damaged wall. She looked tired. For the first time, Vegeta noticed that the infant was not within her reach.
"I'm letting my parents watch him for the night," the woman said, covering her face with her hands. "And not of my own accord."
The prince surveyed the woman with a degree of anxiety. She had not been herself lately and he did not know what to expect from her.
"He's a Saiyan," he said to her. "He doesn't need to be coddled."
"He's also a baby," the woman countered, uncovering her face. "He needs his mother."
"Whatever. What are you going to do about this hole?"
For a brief moment Vegeta saw a flash of anger fly across her face, but then it was gone. Bulma stepped back from the wall and gave it a long, searching look.
"If I start today, maybe I can be finished by the end of the month. Truthfully, I don't have a timeframe. My father installed what we thought were Vegeta-proof tiling. It took a few days just to get the ceramic fitted. Until today, I sort of believed the thing was indestructible."
Vegeta's left eye twitched. He certainly didn't have until the end of the month.
"In case you've forgotten, woman," he said with a frown, "those androids will be here in less than three months. I don't have the time to wait around doing nothing while the machine is broken."
Bulma threw her hands up in the air. "Well it's not my fault, Vegeta! I've got several bots I can give you to train with, but they're pretty useless without the simulator."
She blew hair out of her face. "Shit."
"Precisely my point."
The woman chewed on a bright yellow fingernail. "I suppose sparring with Goku is out of the question."
Vegeta scowled but didn't answer. It was certainly a suggestion but he had no intention of demonstrating to Kakarot that he had yet to reach the status of a Super Saiyan. It was humiliating enough that he hadn't been the first.
While the woman was still silent, Vegeta had time to weigh his options. If the Namek were stronger he would consider him an possibility despite the risk that he may report Vegeta's condition to Kakarot. He cursed himself for blowing up the Gravity Room and causing such an infuriating predicament. Because he had no sparring partner to speak of and no simulator, training on lowly Earth gravity was not an option. He furrowed his brow.
"I'll need to train somewhere else," Vegeta stated firmly.
There was a silence and then the woman sighed. "I thought you might say that." She gave him a look that seemed sad, but the prince couldn't quite tell. "Follow me."
Vegeta walked closely behind the woman across the backyard and inside Capsule Corporation. She led him to the very same basement he had come across after he had awoken from his painful unconsciousness all those years ago. Dr. Brief was not here however, and he did not have to push any doors down to get inside.
They took metal stairs that kept descending further and further into the earth, until the only light came from wall panels overhead. The woman pressed a code into a control panel next to a very large steel door. When it slid open it revealed an enormous room and sitting on the floor on stubby, metal legs was a white and blue pod with black lettering on the side.
"What is this?" Vegeta asked, surprised that this had been here all this time and he had had no clue. "Well! Explain yourself!"
"It's a ship," Bulma said, walking forward and knocking on the front of it. The loud bang echoed around the room. "As you can see it's plenty big enough and can hold a decent amount of food and equipment."
How had something so gigantic escaped Vegeta's knowledge? He circled around the pod, his eyes scouring its surface. It was pristine, shiny and sturdy. It was a lot like the one he had traveled to Earth in but larger.
"So how much food will you be needing out there?" asked Bulma from across the room.
Vegeta continued inspecting the ship. "I haven't even decided which planet I'll be going to. I need some time to think."
Bulma placed her hands on her hips. "Guess I'd better get started on that Gravity Room then. Can't get fixed by itself." She paused. "When are you going to leave?"
Vegeta could hear the uncertainty in her voice, and while he did not particularly like it, he understood it. He faced her with a smirk. "Trying to get rid of me, woman?"
She smiled and pressed a few buttons near the door. It slid open and she stood underneath its sensor which kept it open.
"Not yet," was her answer, and the door slid shut as she disappeared on the other side.
Trunks had a set of lungs that rivaled his daughter's in every way. In fact, his might have been more powerful.
"Just a minute Trunksy-Wunksy!" Dr. Brief cooed, patting the baby's back gently and swaying in place. "Grandma will be back in just a moment. Look! Look at me!"
Dr. Bref reached onto the sofa and seized a fuzzy blue bear. He waved it sideways in front of Trunks' face. For a moment the infant seemed satisfied. His crying stopped and his eyes widened at the sight of the stuffed animal. The scientist exhaled in relief.
The baby's tears had started again and the bear had been mercilessly thrown to the floor.
"I'm here! I'm here!"
Mrs. Brief flew into the living room with a plastic bottle in her hand. She motioned for her husband to hand her the screaming child and he did so with reluctant pleasure. When the bottle reached Trunks' mouth the crying instantly stopped and he began to eat so fast it seemed as though he were inhaling rather than drinking the formula.
Both mister and Mrs. Brief took a weary seat on the couch.
"Did you see him throw that bear?" asked Dr. Brief with a wry smile. "It was quite remarkable, dear. Most children his age can't even hold a toy in their hands, let alone throw it halfway across the room."
"He's Vegeta's boy through and through," his wife answered with a grand smile.
Well that was certainly true. The boy's strength for his age was outstanding. He could already hold up his head and had taken to grabbing the fingers of whomever was feeding him in an adorable attempt to hold his own bottle. The older man could see an independent streak in the baby as well. Trunks seemed to enjoy being left alone at times, taking solace in the quiet that surrounded him.
"I don't care how much he cries," said his wife as she adjusted the bottle, "I'm so happy that Bulma let us spend the day with him."
"Maybe she'll go on vacation with Vegeta and let us take him for an entire week! Oh, it'd be lovely!"
Dr. Brief frowned. "I don't think there'll be too many vacations for awhile, dear. Those androids will be here soon enough and everyone will be much too busy."
His wife chuckled. "You've never been an optimist. Vegeta's so strong now and Goku's been training everyday. That's what Bulma said, right?"
"So just how long could it take? Those boys are going to win! There's no doubt about it!"
Dr. Brief had no desire to crush his wife's hopes so he smiled and nodded. His open happiness was a façade that he used routinely around others less knowledgeable about Earth's impending doom. It was the only way he was ever happy nowadays; even his daughter had no idea how heavily the impending android battle weighed on his mind.
But today everything was better. Staring into the hungry, half-closed eyes of his only grandson, Dr. Brief truly felt joy. There was always a silver lining, wasn't there?
The sun was blazing in the distance. Goku lay in the grass outside of his home with his eyes wide open. Chi-Chi, her hair disheveled and her purple dress wrinkly, looked like a tiny angel, curled under his arm. Her red sphere earrings glittered in the sunlight and Goku touched one with his free hand.
"Those things sure are shiny."
"My father got them for me a long time ago," she said, closing her eyes.
"He's a good shopper."
The conversation drifted away but Goku didn't mind. The two of them had been like this for the entire day, slipping in and out of sleepy consciousness. Goku was tired from his constant training regime. Chi-Chi because of her worry.
Goku lifted his head in time to see his son perform an incredibly complicated series of kicks in the air. The boy landed on the ground with his knees bent and one arm straight between them. The other was behind his back, pointing toward the sky.
"Hey! That was great, Gohan!"
Goku would have liked to join his son in his acrobatics but he couldn't bring himself to leave his wife by herself, even if he'd only be gone for a little while. She had been really nice about him needing to train so much. Besides, he missed her.
He settled back into the tall grass and let out a long breath, closing his eyes. Less than three months to go and he wasn't nervous yet. His lack of anxiety unnerved him to say the least. Was he really so confident in everyone's abilities? He had been preparing his son and checking in on Krillin and Piccolo constantly. Goku hadn't met with anyone else though. In fact, he hadn't seen Vegeta in such a long time that he began to wonder if the boy from the future even existed anymore.
Man, he was really in a bind. He thought about going over to check on how he and Bulma were doing but he wasn't really sure if he should. Besides, Chi-Chi had talked to Bulma pretty regularly at some point in the past year. Goku knew he shouldn't risk going over to Capsule Corp if everything was fine. He couldn't think of a single thing Vegeta hated more than him.
A purple dragonfly buzzed past Goku's face and he opened his eyes again. The sky was clear and blue, the sun burned a bright yellow. In the long branches of leafy trees nearby he could hear birds cheerfully chirping. It was one of the best days of the year and he was glad he was going to spend it with his family, even if the peace weren't going to last for very long.
A dark cloud began to hang over his head and he sighed. When this ordeal was over, he just wanted everything to go right back to normal. He wasn't sure what was going to happen, but Goku knew he was going to try his very best no matter what.
The world depended on it.
If all of her calculations were correct, Bulma had successfully navigated through stars and charted a course to Nemet, a dwarf planet with over four-hundred and fifty times Earth's gravity. It was so far away that Vegeta would certainly require a spaceship and loads of supplies. Furthermore, it would take him several days to arrive. Luckily she had anticipated all of this already and had spent the past three days making sure the basement spaceship was ready for lift off.
She began to inspect her work from inside the ship.
"Closet full of boots and Saiyan armor, check." She turned around from the control panel. "A pantry full of food, check."
Bulma continued walking around the large ship, switching on lights and checking the radar, autopilot and fuel systems. It wasn't a new pod or anything, but it had been taken care of like one. It was almost in perfect condition if she didn't count the chipped paint on the outside.
She took a brief look at her watch. It was still early in the evening. She could get back to fixing that stupid Gravity Room if she wanted to. Her mother was watching Trunks upstairs again so there was no reason to prolong it any further.
Bulma turned to leave the room and gasped as she ran straight into Vegeta's chest.
Her nose smarted and she pushed off of him and used her free hand to cover her face.
"What have I told you about sneaking up on me like that?" she demanded to know. "This has got to be the six hundredth time!"
He was staring at the ship behind her and didn't respond.
"Oh no, Vegeta. That's fine. I'm not here at all. Don't mind me," said Bulma, irritated that she was being ignored after working for so long.
"What?" he asked, and it was obvious that he had not heard her. "What are you talking about, woman?"
She narrowed her eyes but didn't have it in her to start an argument with the man. So Bulma grabbed Vegeta's hand in hers and pulled him through the open door of the ship.
"Let's take a grand tour, shall we?"
She entered into the main room, which looked an awfully lot like the GR. This was partly because of the decoration, but mostly because it acted as a gravity simulator for intense training.
"You can train here. The control panel for this is in the middle of the room," Bulma told Vegeta as she waved her hand around. "Don't you dare push it past the limit. It'll destroy the ship. It's just a temporary training room, so it only goes to 200g."
Vegeta tapped his foot on the white tiled floor and knocked a fist against the walls.
Bulma motioned for him to follow her to another much smaller room where there was a bed, dresser, closet, TV and small circular window. A small door led to an immaculate bathroom with a shower, sink, mirror and toilet.
"Obviously this is the bedroom. I doubt you'll be spending too much time back here since you'll be training. But there's a television and everything. You should be able to get some satellite channels I guess-"
Vegeta shot her a look that cut her off mid-sentence. "I don't think I'll have time for channel surfing, woman."
"Let me show you the main control room then," Bulma said, and she walked out of the bedroom, past the training center and into another door at the very front of the ship. It all looked very high tech and Bulma was quite proud of it.
"So, how do you like it?" she asked, leaning against the front window.
Vegeta walked around and looked around. He ran his hand across the dashboard, the windshield and several flat TV monitors.
"Does this blasted thing know where it's going?"
"You know it," she answered. "I've already charted it, plus there are backups installed in case you get off course. I've even got the takeoff scheduled for tomorrow morning right as the sun goes up. It'll come back whenever you're ready to. Which reminds me, do you have any idea how to steer this thing?"
Vegeta's brow furrowed. "It's almost exactly like the ships I remember from my home planet. I'd commanded hundreds of ships like this one before you were even born."
Bulma smiled, seriously doubting that but willing to ignore it. "You like it then? That's good. I was worried you'd find something to complain about."
The Saiyan arched an eyebrow. "Just give me a moment. I'm sure I'll find something."
Rolling her eyes, Bulma turned to leave the ship. Instead she was stopped by hand on her arm. Spinning around she was thrown face to face with Vegeta; his dark eyes were boring into hers.
"And just where do you think you're going?"
She raised a teal eyebrow at him and looked down at her arm where he had seized her.
"I'm going to work on that gravity room you blew up. Remember? I should put it back in shape so that if for some reason you come back early, you've got somewhere to train."
Vegeta looked upward at the ceiling. "How do you turn these lights off?"
Suspicious, Bulma hesitated before flicking off a switch. Instantly they were surrounded in darkness, except for the dim, green light of the control panel. Vegeta instantly became shrouded in the darkness, his form a ghostly emerald in the blackness.
"Are you scared, woman?" Vegeta asked with a smirk he knew she could hardly see. "And all this time I thought you were like me."
The woman's fearsome expression became aggravated instead. "What are you doing, Vegeta?"
He enjoyed being able to see her while she could not see him in return. It gave him an insurmountable amount of control that he hadn't tasted in a long while.
"Stop asking so many questions," he said with another smirk. "You'll find out soon enough."
He sensed that she had finally guessed what he was planning. When she didn't turn the lights back on, or turn away from the touch of his hand on her hip, Vegeta had no intentions of stopping what he had started.
Staring through the darkness Vegeta saw her eyelashes flutter. He could see her soft flesh in the moonlight, soft from motherhood and taut with her recent flurry of exercising. Soft pink lips, a dirty smudge on her temple, and her hair messy from working. He carefully ran his fingers up the length of her arm.
The pressure in his veins was startled by the velvet texture of the woman's voice, calling his name in a way he hadn't heard in a long time. What he wanted to do was take her the same way he had always taken her, swiftly and primitively. It could last hours or minutes and the outcome was always the same. But this time…
Vegeta stepped closer to Bulma until he was so close to her that he could feel her heartbeat and smell the faint citrus perfume she always applied lightly. Slowly, he lowered his head until his lips were resting beneath her ear. His hands began to unbutton her shirt. Her hands reached for his shirt and she pulled it off over his head.
He left hot kisses down her neck, her throat, her shoulders, her breasts, her navel. The woman had discarded her shirt and undergarments gradually. She was matching him pace for pace. Her hands slowly tugged at his pants until they lay in a pile on the floor.
He kissed her hard, staggering along the wall of the ship until the two of them toppled over onto the unchristened bed, their breathing labored. A range of emotions began to overcome the alien prince but he did not know why.
Vegeta gave her a onceover as she lay face-up in the darkness, her hands reaching out to grab his shoulders and bring him down on top of her. His body responded so quickly that he became fearful of what he might do to her. The woman seemed so much more fragile now.
Her teeth marked his neck, his ear, his bottom lip.
"When… when are you c-coming… back?" she breathed.
"I don't know," responded Vegeta, taking the woman's shorts and throwing them aside. Her long legs wrapped around his naked torso and pulled him close to her.
"Are you coming back?"
Such a loaded question and yet she wore a look of intense innocence, as though he might answer that any way he pleased. Vegeta spoke the truth.
He grabbed her in his arms and turned over on his back so that she was on top of him. If he had enough patience he could watch her from that angle for a generous amount of time.
Bulma leaned over, looking satisfied at his answer. She rested her forehead on his, her parted lips touching his seductively. Vegeta felt the hairs on his arm stand up and while he was thoroughly lost in what was happening, he could not help but think of what she had asked him only moments before. He would certainly return. He had no choice.
She was his, after all.
Vegeta awoke hours later with the woman's arm hurled haphazardly over his face. He did not need to look at a clock to determine that it was well into the night. Wiping sleep from his eyes, he sat up and got dressed. He wrapped the woman, who was a remarkably heavy sleeper, in the blankets and lifted her into his arms. He looked outside and a pitch-black basement greeted him.
Good. The last thing he needed was the woman's meddling parents finding the two of them in their current state. He left the ship quickly and made it to the stairs that eventually led to the ground floor of Capsule Corp.
The woman was mumbling in her sleep but didn't awaken. Vegeta rolled his eyes and began his ascent to her bedroom. Sensing that he was alone, he was in no rush. He nudged the woman's bedroom door open with his toe and once inside, carefully laid her on the messy bed.
Vegeta left her room as quickly as he had entered and found himself in the hallway once again. He stood still, looking around. He was being pulled again.
What's the matter with you?
He treaded quietly along the soft carpet that led to the nursery. Muted golden light escaped from the crack in the door. Was it such a good idea to disturb a sleeping infant and risk waking his sleeping mother? Vegeta narrowed his eyes and pushed open the door with a finger.
The new father walked into the nursery and looked over at the crib as it rocked gently back and forth while classical music played. Inside, his hands and feet wriggling under a baby blue blanket, was his son. And he was wide-awake.
"What are you doing up, boy?" Vegeta asked gruffly, folding his arms against his chest as he looked down at Trunks.
The baby was silent but his eyes grew wide as his father approached him.
The two stared at one another for a long time. Finally, Vegeta bent over and did something that he had not done before. He pulled back the blanket and lifted his son out of his cradle. He held him at arms length and squinted hard at the tiny infant.
"Gah, even your eyes are beginning to turn blue."
At the sound of his voice the baby began to gurgle unintelligibly. Vegeta brought him to his chest and with his free arm, took off the ridiculous looking blue hat the woman made him wear constantly.
He would never have guessed the heir to his legacy would have purple hair. Something nagged him at that very moment, but he dismissed it.
Trunks began to whimper and his eyes shut. Vegeta was new to fatherhood and did not understand the simplistic language of babies, but he realized quickly that his son was going to tear his eardrums apart any second.
With an irritated grunt, Vegeta stretched the ugly hat back around Trunks' head. He stopped whimpering.
"She's gotten to you already," he said with a wrinkled nose. "Humph. Well, no matter boy. You'll be Saiyan material soon enough."
Vegeta eyed the boy closely; he smelled like milk and womanly scented powder. His own mother had treated him just as well. If he didn't keep watch, his son would end up as soft as Kakarot's boy. Gohan had consistently shown that he was strong, but he was a fighter of impulse, of emotional unrestraint. For that his true power would remain locked inside of him. His son would be different.
Vegeta gave his son a searching look and then looked forward, his eyes landing on the glowing painting of Vegetasai. He remembered that he would be leaving soon and he pursed his lips and looked downward at his son.
"Keep your mother company for me," he said.
Trunks made a 'cooing' noise but his eyes had closed. Vegeta carefully placed him on his back in his crib. He pulled the blanket to his waist. Then he stepped back, gave his son one more glance, and left the room.
The next morning Bulma pulled herself out of bed with a feeling of dread. Vegeta was nowhere to be found. She hurriedly dressed and pulled her hair into a ponytail. She had been on her way to the basement to see if Vegeta had gone when she detected the smell of pancakes from the kitchen.
Bulma changed direction and headed into the kitchen. Vegeta sat at the island counter shoveling food into his mouth in such a disgusting manner that she nearly gagged. In front of the stove was her cheerful looking mother in her world famous apron, flipping bacon in a hot pan.
"Good morning Bulma, dear!" cried Mrs. Brief with a great smile. "I've made you some delicious chocolate chip pancakes! Come have a plate!"
"What's with all this food?" asked Bulma, taking a seat next to Vegeta, who had yet to acknowledge her as he inhaled his breakfast.
"I figured since Vegeta's leaving today he wouldn't mind having one last home cooked meal. Isn't that right, darling?"
The Saiyan prince looked up at her and grunted, crumbs falling from his mouth.
"Oh, gross. Do you even chew it first?" Bulma asked, repulsed.
"Eat up dears!" said her mother and she sat a plate of pancakes and bacon in front of her.
Even Bulma couldn't resist her mother's cooking. It was a shame she had yet to inherit any of the woman's cooking skill. She turned to Vegeta, who was gulping a large glass of orange juice.
"Today's the day," she said, trying to push down the anxiety she suddenly felt at the thought of him taking off into deep space. "Are you ready?"
"I was born ready, woman," was his answer.
"I'd like to come see you off, Vegeta," said Bulma's mother, "but I'm afraid seeing you leave would make me very sad. You will come back and visit now won't you?"
"Mother," Bulma said rolling her eyes. "He's not moving out. He's just going to train for the Androids for a little while."
Her mother's eyes filled with tears instantly. "Oh, how wonderful! I thought you might be leaving us for good! What a good man you are, Vegeta! And thoughtful too! This world is all the better for having you in it!"
Bulma wasn't sure, but it looked like Vegeta was smirking.
Hearing Trunks begin to cry, Bulma left the table. When she had returned to the kitchen, Vegeta had gone. Grabbing a bottle, the younger woman turned to her mother.
"Don't worry, dear. He's just gone down to the basement. He said to let you know."
Bulma popped the bottle in Trunks' eager mouth and quickly made her way down the stairs and into the large room where the shuttle was activated and waiting to depart. Vegeta stood in front of it with his hands on his hips. He looked determined.
"What time is thing taking off?"
Bulma glanced at her watch and then up at the ceiling, which was beginning to fold upon itself, revealing the sunlight overhead.
"In a few minutes, so you'd better get situated in there."
Vegeta nodded, but made no immediate moves.
"Be careful, Vegeta," pleaded Bulma, trying to look as determined as he was. She was afraid but she refused to show it. "I want you back in one piece."
A corner of the Saiyan's mouth rose in a cocky looking grin.
His display of strength did nothing for her nerves. Bulma rushed toward him and kissed him hard on the lips. He was clearly surprised at her motion but he did not stop her.
"Don't be an idiot," she said, pulling away.
He began to climb up the walkway and then stopped, and put out his hands in front of him.
"Give him to me."
Bulma placed the baby in his outstretched hands. Vegeta looked the baby directly in his eyes.
"Remember what I've said to you, boy."
That was that. He handed Trunks back and with a nod in her direction, boarded onto the shuttle. As the doors closed, Bulma waved at him, not entirely sure if he could see her but sure he knew she was still there. The countdown began.
"T-Minus 10 seconds until liftoff."
Something was happening inside of Bulma's chest. She felt a resolve she hadn't felt before. The androids were coming and Vegeta was leaving. Her grip around Trunks tightened.
"BYE, VEGETA!" she yelled. She waved Trunks' tiny arm as steam filled the underbelly of the ship.
Bulma stepped back to a safe distance as her spacecraft began to levitate off of the ground. She pressed her hand against her son's ear and lay his other against her chest as the ship began to power up.
"T-Minus 5, T-Minus 4, T-Minus 3, T-Minus 2…"
Inevitably tears filled her eyes, but she was not sad. She was not afraid. She was not disheartened.
"T-Minus 1, preparing for takeoff."
There was a loud rumble and the ship hovered feet over Bulma's head. A gust of wind blew her hair back. The ceiling had completely opened, a burst of fire shot out of the exhaust. It shot off into the sky and carried Vegeta further and further away until the only thing either Trunks or Bulma could see was a tiny white dot in the sky and then nothing at all.
Her life was going to change dramatically in the upcoming months and possibly for the worse, but she would not show apprehension or fear. Vegeta certainly hadn't. And despite their rocky relationship, he had never lied to her. If he said he was going to be okay, she believed him.
No, Bulma was not sad. She did not know when, but she knew that one day Vegeta would be back. She knew he would be fine, that he could take care of himself the way they had taken care of one another. She permitted herself a small smile and let herself feel something she still couldn't quite say aloud.
But it was there as clear as the blue sky before her.
One day she might even tell him.
Yes, she was going to tell him one day soon.
A/N: Finally, this is complete! I am very happy with what I've turned out for all of you and I can only hope that you found it half as entertaining as I did while writing it. I couldn't have found the motivation to finish without all of you who clicked on the strange title and read this story. Seriously, thank you all so much.
With that out of the way, I hope that you enjoyed the ending. I understand that a lot of B/V 3-Years end with Vegeta having attained Super Saiyan status. I've always liked the idea of leaving a few things up in the air. If you have any questions at all, feel free to PM me! Now I look forward to reading all of your stories since this one has left me needing a bit of a break!
A special thanks to all of you who have reviewed and/or are going to review at some point. Knowing that someone has taken the time out of their busy day to review something that you've written is a really amazing feeling. Thanks again for sticking around through these 3 years with me. It's been a rough, yet awesome journey. We'll have to do this again sometime.