Disclaimer: I do not own Dragonball Z. Period, dot, end of statement.
Chapter 13: A Reunion… of Sorts
Now that she could sense energy, Videl could tell that Gohan was training. Usually the only presence she could sense on a regular basis was Vegeta, since he trained all the time. She thought that Gohan had been focused during his training – Vegeta was ridiculous. But when Gohan unleashed all his power, he overshadowed the other man easily.
Grinning, the girl decided to pop over to Gohan's house, even though it was not a training day for them. Thanks to their little heart-to-heart, they had managed to push through the cause of Videl's problems together. Flashbacks were a rare occurrence now, and when they did, Gohan was able to talk her through them much more quickly than before. She was also able to continue training the same day rather than going home and hiding under her covers for the next two days.
Because they were able to do so much more training than before, Videl's power had begun growing by leaps and bounds. Her biggest accomplishment (to her, anyway) was being able to use the Instantaneous Movement technique to get from her house to Gohan's. She had only done it once, during training, but now that she knew the feel of it, it would not be a problem.
What she did not expect was to see a sword hurtling toward her face at a speed that would definitely slice her in two. She squeaked and jumped out of the way, just as Gohan attempted to pull the blade up. He managed to plunge it into the grass instead of in her abdomen, but did an odd sort of flip over the blade and landed on his back. Unfortunately, he had not let go of the handle, and a loud crack rent the air. His sword had somehow snapped off near the hilt.
"Gohan! Are you all right?" Videl asked, hurrying over and kneeling beside her friend.
The teenager groaned. "I'm fine," he replied, holding the hilt up in front of his face and examining it. "Kibito is going to be pissed." He took Videl's proffered hand and hauled himself up, sighing. "Oh well," he said, tossing the hilt by the blade. "Obviously it wasn't a very good sword, even though it was supposedly legendary. What are you doing here?"
"I just wanted to surprise you," the girl answered, shame coloring her voice. She had made him break a legendary blade? It must have belonged to someone very important.
"Hey, don't worry about it," Gohan soothed. "It's just a sword in the end. I'm sure I can find a blacksmith who can fix it." Suddenly, his eyes narrowed. He whirled around to face the sword, pushing Videl behind him. She scowled at his back and peeked around his torso to see what his problem was.
She gasped as she realized that the hilt of the sword was glowing. The grass around the shorn off blade was billowing and she could feel a strange energy coming from that direction. "What on Earth…?" she wondered aloud. She and Gohan looked at each other, both extremely confused.
"Oh, it's so nice to be out of there!" an elderly voice said. The two teenagers immediately looked back at the sword, or where the sword had been. They gaped at the sight. In place of metal blade and jeweled hilt was a very short, very old, very purple man with a shock of white hair atop his head and a tiny white toothbrush mustache under his nose. Yellow spheres dangled from his humongous ears. But it was his outfit that caught Videl's attention. It looked a lot like the clothes that two of the fighters at the WMAT had been wearing.
Apparently Gohan recognized the clothes as well. "You're a Kai," he said, voice odd. "You look a lot like Shin. Are you related?"
The old man – the Kai – scowled at him as he began brushing off his odd clothes. Copious amounts of dust billowed from the fabric and Videl coughed, bringing the bottom of her shirt up to her mouth and nose. "How would I know?" he asked grumpily. "I've been sealed in that sword for 75 million years. I've no idea what's happened in the universe since then, let alone know of any relatives that I might or might not have."
The two teenagers glanced at each other. The same incredulous look graced their faces. 75 million years? Gohan shrugged. "Well, that's easy enough to find out." A concentrated look graced his face; ten seconds later, a man appeared next to him. Videl recognized him from the WMAT, though she did not remember his name. Shin, apparently. Then something Gohan had said registered in her mind.
"Gohan, did you say he's a Kai?"
Gohan had seen the look of absolute shock on the Supreme Kai's face only once before, when he actually managed to pull the Z Sword out of the rock back on the Planet of the Kais. Somehow, he thought, mortals did not usually see a Kai's face at all while alive, much less looking completely gobsmacked. He snickered briefly before Videl's question penetrated his amusement.
"What?" the boy said intelligently. "Oh. Yeah, Shin's the Supreme Kai at the moment. That might change though."
"Wait, you're on a first name basis with a Kai?" she shrieked.
Gohan winced as the two immortals turned to face them, identical expressions of annoyance on their faces. "Excuse me," he muttered, grabbing Videl's arm and hauling her into the house, ignoring her attempts to stop their movement. "Yes, I'm on a first name basis with the Supreme Kai," he said, answering her question. "It's a perk of saving the world. Cell would have moved on to other planets with other civilizations and killed them too, so Shin thanked me for killing him." Okay, so it was a half-truth, but he was not going to get into the story of his life right at this moment, no matter how close he and Videl might be. "It might be best if you go home for right now. I don't know what will happen right now, and I'd rather be safe than sorry."
Videl blew her bangs out of her face. "Fine," she acquiesced, sounding frustrated. "Are you coming with me?"
The teenager shook his head. "No," he replied. "Unlike you, I'm stronger than the two of them combined. If something bad does happen, I'll feel better knowing that I only have to worry about protecting myself and not you as well. I'm not trying to be rude, you know that."
The girl sighed. "I know," she said. "Be careful." And with that, she was gone.
Gohan was suspicious of her lack of a fight. He did not put it past her to show up after several minutes had passed, but he figured that by the time she came back, explanations would be over with. He went back outside and walked into a figurative battlefield.
"How could you have left me sealed in there for so long?" the Old Kai was currently shouting. "It's embarrassing that a mortal was the one to break the seal and not a Kai!"
"I didn't know you were in there," Shin shot back. "I am the only Supreme Kai left, and I was young when the others were killed. I hadn't learned everything I needed to yet."
"The only Supreme Kai left?" Old Kai scoffed. "Lad, you must be joking. The only being that might have been strong enough to do that was Majin Buu, and he was easy enough to overpower when we all worked together."
"An evil wizard named Bibidi was able to unseal him, Elder," Shin said somberly. "The North and West Supreme Kais were killed. The only reason we were able to seal him again was because Grand Supreme Kai and South Kai were absorbed and gave him some measure of goodness. I was able to kill Bibidi and somehow Majin Buu was sealed again. He was recently unsealed by Bibidi's son, Babidi. Gohan here managed to kill Majin Buu, while his father Goku killed Babidi. Hopefully we will have no more problems with Majins."
"You killed Majin Buu, eh?" Old Kai asked, eyes glinting as he looked at Gohan. "Well, in thanks for that and helping me get out of that sword" – here he gave an evil look to Shin – "how would you like me to give you a power boost? I'm sure it would be helpful."
For a moment, Gohan was tempted. A power boost would be helpful if any other problems came along. But… "No thanks, sir," he replied. "Shin's already offered me a reward. A power boost is too much like cheating to me, anyway."
"Saiyans," Old Kai muttered, rolling his eyes. "Heaven forbid that they get a helping hand in the power department. They'd rather be beat to the brink of death rather than accept any help."
An idea formed. "But would you do it for Videl?" the demi-Saiyan asked. "She was the reason the sword broke in the first place, honestly."
"Oh, I suppose so. Won't be much a challenge, but it's better than nothing," Old Kai grumped. "Girl, you heard him! Get out here and sit in front of me."
Videl, caught out, emerged from the house looking embarrassed. Gohan had noticed her return, but ignored her in favor of the more interesting stories he was hearing from the two Kais. As she sat in front of the old man, Gohan made sure she saw him roll his eyes.
"This is a long ritual," Old Kai warned. "The first part takes five hours. The second part will take at least twenty. You have to sit still the entire time. You probably won't get a huge boost, definitely nothing like your friend's power. Do you really think you can do this?"
'Well, if she didn't think she could before, she definitely will now,' Gohan thought, seeing Videl's back stiffen in indignation. 'Never could turn down a challenge.' He did not voice this opinion, however. Instead he told her, "Videl, just meditate. You'll be fine." Videl nodded at him.
"All right," Old Kai said, rubbing his hands together. "Let's begin."
The first part of the ritual had been bizarre by anyone's standards. It had consisted of a strange dance routine around the girl that did not stop for the entire five hours that the beginning took. At the end of it, Old Kai took a seat in front of Videl, a thoughtful look on his face. "She's stronger than I suspected," he admitted. "It will take longer than twenty hours. I'm not sure how long exactly." He stopped talking then, engrossed in the second part of the ritual.
Gohan did not say anything, though his smug smile said everything it needed to. He knew that she was strong. She had to be, after going through the ordeal she had gone through.
"Gohan, have you decided what you would like from me?" Shin's soft voice asked from behind him.
The demi-Saiyan blinked at the Kai. "Um… well, I know what I want, but I don't know how you could do it."
"Well, tell me what it is and I'll see if I can," Shin replied calmly.
Gohan took a moment to organize his thoughts. "I know that you can't open a permanent portal between this timeline and the one I left," he began slowly. "That would cause all sorts of problems for both timelines. Is there a way that I can communicate with my grandfather and uncle where I won't mess things up any more than they already are?"
Shin was impressed, and he said so. "I was not expecting you to be so calm about not being to go back and forth as you pleased," he admitted. "I am impressed that you can even begin to understand the problems, to be honest. I mean no offense," he added hurriedly. "It's just that it's a very large concept for a mortal to grasp." He tapped his chin, thinking. "I believe that I can do something like that," he said slowly. "I will go back to the Afterlife and see what I can do." Raising a hand in farewell, he disappeared on his quest.
Gohan grinned. Hopefully, he would get to see Granddad and Raditz again before too long. He wondered if Lunch had successfully caught Raditz yet, and what Kakarotto was up to. Most of all, he wondered how his grandfather was doing. Had he reached the second level of Super Saiyan yet? Were Dr. Gero and the Red Ribbon Army still causing trouble?
He was distracted from these musings, however, by his stomach rumbling. He winced as Old Kai tossed a glare over his shoulder at him and went inside the house, planning on getting a lunch together. He did not know how Videl could sit there for upwards of a full day and not have to eat. If it was him, the ritual would probably be started over ten times before Old Kai finally gave up in frustration. Good thing it was not him sitting there after all.
It was the thirteenth hour of the second part of the ritual when Shin returned. He looked tired, or as tired as a Kai ever could look. However, a triumphant smile spread across his face when he saw Gohan lounging under a tree close to his front door. He withdrew a largish mirror from his pocket as he walked to the demi-Saiyan.
"It was hard," the Kai announced, but I was able to do it. He handed the mirror to Gohan, who took it eagerly. "I would have used an electronic device, but my magic would have rendered it useless within a month, possibly sooner depending on how you use it. To activate and deactivate it, all you must do is say 'Kanassa-sei.' Your grandfather came up with the word, not me," he added at Gohan's questioning look.
"Shin… I don't know how to thank you," Gohan admitted. He was not crying, thankyouverymuch. Dust had gotten into his eye, probably stuff that was still floating around from Old Kai's clothes.
"There is no need to thank me," Shin replied gently. "You did the universe a great service. This is the least I could do." Noticing Gohan's longing look at the mirror, he said, "I think I shall go and watch this ritual and see if I can make it shorter for the next time he uses it." With that, he got up and walked over to his elder, settling in place behind him.
Gohan stood up and went into his house. He did not want anyone witnessing this moment. 'Not even you, Dende!' he warned mentally. Sitting down on the couch, he propped the mirror up against a book, absently thinking that he needed to get a proper stand for it. He took a deep breath.
He watched as the mirror's surface slowly went black. For a moment, he thought that it would not work. The surface remained stubbornly dark before color finally began to thread through the black. It took a long time to materialize into a picture, and when it did, Gohan stared in shock. What the hell had happened during the time he was away?
Bardock sat on a chair that looked like it belonged with a kitchen table. The wall behind him was part of what Gohan was sure was a plain Capsule Corp house. He saw more decoration on the walls than he would have expected for the kind of practical man Bardock was. He was also very sure that he saw a lacy doily peeking out from under a vase of cheerful daisies nodding under an open window. But none of that was as shocking as what Bardock himself was doing.
He was holding – and feeding! – a baby.
"Granddad, what the hell?" Gohan exclaimed. "That's not yours, is it?"
Bardock smirked at him. "What if I told you he was?" He outright laughed at the expression on Gohan's face. "Calm down. He's Raditz's brat. Guess you were on to something back at the Lookout when you were teasing him."
"And the house?" Gohan's voice was faint.
"I'm babysitting. Raditz and Lunch are out," the Saiyan explained. He made a face and added, "I don't want to know what they're doing, but I wouldn't be surprised if another brat pops up before too long."
Gohan made a face. Yeah, he did not want to know either. "I wondered if you'd turned into a house husband after I left," he teased instead. "The doilies are a nice touch."
Bardock rolled his eyes. "No. I live nearby with Kakarotto. I kicked Raditz out after he and Lunch got together and they got their own house. I'm really glad they don't live with us now; Maze still doesn't sleep through the night. Must be a human thing. Saiyan babies don't do that."
"Himself, here," the older man explained, raising his arms up slightly to indicate the baby. "Raditz wanted to name him Gohan, of course, but we knew that Kakarotto might do that for his own son. Since he only knew you as Maze, they picked 'Maze' instead." He snorted, though his eyes were soft. "Sentiment."
Gohan's throat was tight. He managed to keep the tears at bay, if only to avoid the inevitable teasing, but he really was very touched. He never expected Raditz to do something like this. They were close, yes, but naming his first-born after plain old Gohan?
"Don't cry, kid," Bardock said gruffly. "Or I'll find a way to reach through and smack you one."
The demi-Saiyan smirked slightly. "Maybe I should," he threatened jokingly. He cleared his throat. "Anyway, what's happened since I left? Other than the obvious, I mean," he added, nodding toward the sleeping Maze.
"Training, mostly," the Saiyan replied. "I let Kakarotto roam around as much as he likes. He gets into enough trouble on his own, so I figure that a lot of what you told us happened to him in your time will still happen to him in this one. The Dragonballs are almost ready to be used again, so he's getting really excited to look for his Grandpa. We didn't think about trying to catch it after you disappeared."
"Yeah, I can understand. What about Raditz? Has he gotten any closer to transforming?"
Bardock shook his head. "No. He's slacked off a lot lately. Maze is taking up a lot of their attention right now."
Grandfather and grandson spoke well into the night, regaling each other with their adventures in the past year. Gohan had had more than Bardock, of course, though Bardock had enough stories of Kakarotto's explorations to match Gohan's own. He also had the added bonus of embarrassing stories of Raditz having to sleep on the couch if he made Lunch angry while in her more aggressive personality. It was during a more entertaining story of Raditz being chased by his gun-toting, eight-months-pregnant wife that the subjects of said story walked into the house.
Raditz's face lit up. "Gohan!" he shouted excitedly. He closed his eyes in resignation a second later as Maze's wail cut through the air and Lunch's glare bore into the back of his head. "Shit," he said, much more softly. "It was nice seeing you again, but I've got to go take care of the brat."
"We can talk later," Gohan assured him. "I can't promise I'll be available all the time, but surely we can… I don't know, leave notes taped to the mirrors or something. It was good seeing you too, Raditz." With an ironic salute, Raditz's form left the frame. Gohan returned his gaze to Bardock. "I should probably go. I need to check on Videl and see how that weird ritual is going. We'll talk later, okay? Maybe you can even talk to my parents and Piccolo next time."
"I'd like that, kid," Bardock agreed softly. "I'll see you next time."
"All right. Bye." Gohan said the deactivation phrase quietly. He set the mirror down before standing up and stretching, wincing as his back popped. He wandered outside over to where Old Kai and Videl were still sitting. Shin had moved to the tree that Gohan had been sitting under earlier in the day.
"Ah, Gohan," Shin greeted as Gohan moved closer. "How did your conversation with your grandfather go?"
"Great," the demi-Saiyan replied, grinning widely. "I really don't know how to thank you. Just… thank you so much for doing this. I know it must have been hard."
"Make no mention of it," the Kai countered, smiling. "Elder Kai has told me the ritual will take until tomorrow afternoon sometime. I would suggest procuring food for Miss Videl as I am sure she will be quite hungry after thirty hours or so hours with no food."
Gohan's eyes widened comically. "Damn, I need to go tell her dad that she'll be here overnight." He sighed, scrubbing a hand through his hair. "This'll be fun."
"ABSOLUTELY NOT, GOHAN!"
The demi-Saiyan pursed his lips in annoyance. Mr. Satan was ranting and raving about how it was "improper" and "extremely suspicious" that Videl had to stay the night at Gohan's house. No matter how many times Gohan had repeated that they were being chaperoned by not just one but two people, he would not stop. It was extremely late, Gohan was tired, and he did NOT have the patience to deal with this nonsense.
"Mr. Satan, if you will promise to stop talking and not talk when we get there, I will show you what exactly is going on," Gohan finally snapped, voice cold. "I don't appreciate the insinuations you're making right now. Quite frankly, Videl could come over whenever she wants to and you would never know. You need to trust her to make the right decisions. I know she's your only daughter, but you need to let her grow up."
Mr. Satan slumped, a puppet whose strings had been cut. "I'm sorry," he mumbled. "It's instinct. You'll understand when you have a daughter of your own." Privately, Gohan thought that he would not be nearly so possessive about any daughter that he might have, but he was smart enough not to mention it. He merely placed a hand on Mr. Satan's shoulder and warned, "This is going to feel kind of weird." They immediately disappeared.
They reappeared in Gohan's living room, the better to keep the big man from disturbing the ritual with his inevitable sputtering. When Gohan was sure that his companion had regained his bearings, he pointed to Videl through the window. "The man in front of her is performing a ritual to increase her power," he said quietly. "She has to sit as still as possible. She's already been sitting like this for probably fifteen hours. He said it will take until tomorrow afternoon to unlock it fully. Apparently, her power is stronger than he thought, so it will take longer than normal."
"What about the man sitting under the tree?" Mr. Satan asked, pointing to Shin.
"He's here to learn the ritual," Gohan replied dismissively. "I promise, Mr. Satan, she'll be fine. Really, really hungry and tired tomorrow, but otherwise fine."
Mr. Satan watched his daughter for a moment. Her face was calm, eyes closed, hands on her knees. He recognized the position as one that she used for meditation. He knew that she would not adopt that position if she felt unsafe in any way at all.
"Fine," he sighed. "I don't like it, but I guess I don't really have a choice. Take me home, please."
Gohan silently took him back home.
It took Old Kai a full thirty hours to finish unlocking Videl's power. During that time, Gohan had, for lack of a better word, "called" Bardock again to continue their conversation from the previous night. He took the mirror over to his parents' house so his grandfather could talk to them for the first time.
It was rather funny to see how uncomfortable the man was with Chi-Chi. Of course, that could have been that she was sobbing uncontrollably whilst thanking him profusely for saving her baby Gohan's life and raising him and taking care of him, etc., etc., etc. "I suddenly understand your eleven- year-old self a little bit better," the man said, looking at Gohan. Gohan snickered.
"I'm sorry, Bardock," Chi-Chi said, looking embarrassed as the waterworks finally died down. "I didn't mean to make you feel uncomfortable. It's just… well, I missed Gohan so much while he was gone. I'm just so glad that he had someone to take care of him when we weren't there to do it."
Gohan could see his grandfather biting his tongue. He knew very well what the man thought of Goku and Chi-Chi's "care." He had heard the rant on more than one occasion. Hurrying to smooth the waters, the demi-Saiyan interrupted, "Where's Raditz, Granddad?" Bardock was obviously in his own house this time. There were few decorations in this house, just serviceable but plain furniture. He had gotten a glimpse of a small TV shoved in a corner, but mostly the house was covered in books. This was not surprising at all to Gohan, who knew that his love of books had to come from somewhere beyond those crammed down his throat in his younger years.
Bardock waved a hand. "They all went to the city. Just me here for today. Where's Kakarotto… er, Goku?"
Gohan tilted his head to the side. "Fishing," he and Chi-Chi chorused. "Like always," the teenager continued. "I can go get him, if you'd like."
"Sure, go do that," Bardock ordered. "Leave the mirror here; I don't want you to break it and make Shin have to make a new one."
Gohan looked suspiciously between his mother and his grandfather, sure that they were somehow trying to get him to go away so they could talk privately. Finally, he groaned. "On your own heads be it," he warned them, and left.
Chi-Chi went to the door to make sure that he was walking away and not lurking behind a wall, before she went back and sat at the kitchen table. Bardock opened his mouth, but she beat him to it. "I want you to know that we – Goku and I, that is – know that the way we treated Gohan during his childhood was not the best way to go about things," she said, steamrolling over anything her pseudo-father-in-law had to say. "Heaven knows that Goku didn't know what was even going on when I became pregnant. In this time, he lived by himself for so long that he was quite unaware of the… circle of life, shall we say. I'm ashamed to say that I took advantage of his nature and tried to make Gohan into a scholar. I know that in the world you lived in, fighting was how you stayed alive. On Earth, it's different, as I'm sure you've noticed. The people who get ahead are usually those of higher intelligence. Look at Capsule Corp, for example.
"I wanted Gohan to be able to provide for himself reliably by getting a steady job, not by hopefully winning tournaments and relying on the prize money to keep you alive through another winter. By the time Goku understood enough to object… Well, Gohan was four. I'm sure that he told you what happened around that time."
Bardock was silent for a moment, processing what she had said. "Are you doing the same thing with Goten?" he asked.
Chi-Chi laughed. "Heavens no! Gohan had the temperament for schoolwork at such a young age. Goten is exactly like Goku was at that age, according to Bulma. We've let him pick what he wants to do. He does schoolwork, yes, but not like I made Gohan do."
The man shook his head, chuckling in spite of himself. He knew very well what she meant about Goku at age seven. The boy could never stand still. He was still trying to learn how to read well nearly a year later. "Well, as long as we're clear," he said.
"Crystal," she replied, winking. "Oh, here come my boys! You know, Goku really does look extraordinarily like you. Just wait until you see Goten, though."
She had barely finished speaking when a whirlwind of dust, grass, and boy plopped in her lap and peered into the mirror. "Hi!" Goten chirped. "Are you Granddad?"
For a moment, all Bardock could do was sit and stare. Bulma had not been kidding when she said Goten was the same as Kakarotto. They looked almost exactly alike, though Goten's face was perhaps a bit rounder than Kakarotto's. He found his voice. "Yes, that's me," he replied, smirking at the childish glee that spread across Goten's face. "I'm glad to finally meet you."
It was an odd sensation, watching Goten interact with Bardock. Intellectually, he knew that Bardock was his father. There was no denying that they were related, that was for sure. It was funny just how similar their hair was. There were a few minor differences – Bardock's skin was darker, and his eyes were shaped slightly differently – but for the most part, if someone did not already know who was who, they would be very confused indeed.
"So you're Kakarotto."
Goku blinked, interrupted from his musings. "Um, yeah. That's me!" he replied, one hand rubbing the back of his neck nervously. "I don't know what you want me to call you though."
"Raditz calls me 'Father,'" Bardock shrugged. "You can call me Bardock, though. It's not like I was present throughout your childhood."
Goku laughed, startled. "Yeah, I guess so," he said. "Where's Raditz, anyway? I'd like to meet him the way he is now. Er, I'm guessing that you know how it went the first time we met."
His father nodded. "Gohan told me once. He went to the city with his family." He looked back at Goten. "You know, you're the same age in my timeline as Goten is now. It's amazing just how alike the two of you are. I know that we look alike, but it's nothing compared to you and Goten."
"Where am I now?" Goku asked. This was so weird, asking about the location of your past self!
"Somewhere. The Dragonballs are nearly ready to be used again, so you've gotten a head start on finding them so you can find 'Grandpa.'"
They were silent for a few moments. This was descending into awkward territory awfully fast. Neither man knew what to say to the other; the only thing they seemed to have in common other than their looks was their shared love of fighting. If they were in the same location, it would have been easy – someone would eventually ask if the other wanted to spar and that would be that. Unfortunately, they were separated by more than just distance, so that was impossible.
Gohan inadvertently saved the day when he stiffened and looked out the window. Goku felt it too. "Gohan, who is that?" he asked. "They just came out of nowhere!"
"Holy shit," Gohan breathed. He looked proud. "I knew she was going to be strong, but that's incredibly strong for a human! I think she's passed Krillin's level by now."
"Yeah," the demi-Saiyan replied. "Long story short, I broke that sword and there was an old Kai in it. He has the same kind of power that Guru did, where he can unlock your potential. He just unlocked all of Videl's. I'm sorry, Granddad, but I need to get back to my house. Are you okay with talking to Dad later?"
"That's fine, kid," Bardock said, and Goku heard the thin note of relief thread through his voice. It echoed the relief tumbling through his own mind. "I'm sure that we'll have plenty of time to talk."
"Thanks. Bye!" Gohan whispered something to the mirror and it blanked out. "Sorry guys, gotta go!" He disappeared a second later.
"Well, that was interesting," Chi-Chi said briskly. "Goten go up to room and finish your schoolwork for today, please. If you need help, come ask. When you're done, you may come down and watch some television before dinner." Goten pouted, but did as his mother asked and began to trudge upstairs.
She turned back to Goku. "Give it some time, dear," she said kindly. "You aren't going to hit it off with everyone right off the bat. Bardock is more like Vegeta than anything. It'll be fine."
Goku smiled and kissed her cheek. "I'm sure you're right," he agreed. What would he do without her?
"Of course I'm right," his wife replied, smiling beatifically. "Now help me do these dishes. Over half of them are yours anyway."
The Saiyan's face fell comically. For one thing, he would not be doing the dishes...
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