"I can't even get five minutes of peace."

Bulma smirked to herself, her head ducked so that her hair veiled her face. As quietly as possible, she slid the balcony door closed until it made a final click. When she turned back to face him, she noticed that he had not budged from his place against the railing.

Ever the still statue, she mused to herself, her head canting to view him from a new angle. Fascinated by his presence, Bulma witnessed the sunset play upon his strict features; the furrowed brow and perpetual scowl casting stark shadows across his visage.

"Are you just going to stand there like an idiot, onna?" He growled again, low and deep, and Bulma noted with satisfaction his dark eyes darting to catch her movements toward him. Her hands reached out to the railing before she drew up beside him – that is, as close as Vegeta would allow her.

Deftly she curled her fingers about the rail and she leaned forward, pressing her stomach against the metal. Bulma inhaled, drawing in the sweet scent of her mother's gardens below, and she shut her eyes against the setting sunlight. Upon popping a single blue orb open, she found Vegeta gazing, unmoved, into the distance. He didn't seem focused on any particular point; whatever it was he was looking at was well beyond her realm of vision.

"Welcome home, at least," she offered sardonically, knowing full and well he would not appreciate the sentiment.

Bulma was not disappointed in his clenching of teeth and the sharp 'tch!' he used to reject her pleasantries. "Don't be stupid," he spat aggressively, arms wrapped firmly above his chest. He seemed to tighten them unconsciously. "I will be gone again by daybreak."

"Aw, don't tell me you didn't miss this," she teased with a lilt as she tilted her head back to let her blue locks tip away from her shoulders. She half-smiled upon his quick glance, noticing that specific glower her usually saved for her. His silence answered her well enough, and Bulma simply sighed and bowed further over the rail. "Whatever," she dismissed him. "Can't say that I blame you. I'm happy to get away from Trunks right now, if only for handful of seconds. He can be so loud and fussy sometimes!"

"Can't imagine where he inherited that," Vegeta sneered.

The pinch to the patch above his elbow did little to deter the smirk on his lips. The aqua haired woman snorted disdainfully as she turned away from him once more, her glare settled firmly on her family's lot stretched out before them. "Oh, what would you even know?"

"There is likely little difference between the squalling brat and his future counterpart," Vegeta supplied with a hint of irritation, his thick eyebrows knitting tight together as he recounted the time together with the young man in the Room of Spirit and Time.

"Don't call my son a brat," Bulma reprimanded him sharply as her digits fastened harder over the metal bar beneath her hands. "Just because he doesn't like you—"

Onyx eyes flew heavenwards, before soaring back over the landscape of Capsule Corporation. "Like I give a shit," he bit out with a pointed look thrown Bulma's way. "As though I need another one, attached to my hip as though to a mother's apron strings. It's disgusting."

It took her a moment to riddle that one out – good God, her brain had been fried over the last handful of days – but inevitably she met Vegeta's opinion with a thin smile, somewhere between agreement and reproach. "He is a bit clingy, ne?" She permitted and was rewarded by the minute tilt of his lips in appreciation of her response. "But you can't blame him, Vegeta," Bulma continued on an exhale, her torso dropping so that she may lay her head against her folded arms upon the railing. "He never had a father in his future. You were killed before he could even remember your face."

Her mind whirled over the possibilities of Trunks' future occurring within her own timeline, and Bulma felt the familiar flash of fear tangle in her stomach. Tightening her hold on reality, as well as the rail of the balcony, she let her teal eyes focus intently on the sparring figures on the lawn as her vision blurred with the promise of tears. "He just wants to know you, even as you are now – as though that would make a difference – and he—"

"What is that supposed to mean?"

Vegeta's inquiry had come so abruptly, Bulma faltered on her words. Instantly, she met his speculative gaze, and her cheeks flooded with color. She didn't know why she suddenly felt embarrassed – what was it that she had even said, now? "I'm just trying to explain to you, is all. Don't treat him so harshly."

The Saiyan's dark eyes swooped over her, the angled curve of her body as she leant beside him. His mouth turned southward as his gaze darted back to the horizon. The response to her plea was as insignificant as it seemed her request was to him, and Bulma groaned aloud in exasperation.

"Fine," she began to draw up from the bar, one arm dropping away as she moved. "As though it makes a difference," Bulma repeated once more, already beginning to twirl away, "I just wanted to say hello—"

Her sea foam locks had barely finished falling before his warm, hard fingers encircled her wrist. Bulma froze mid-movement as she felt his grip, her eyes scanning up his arm until they reached his face. His features, set in such an odd determination, seemed vaguely familiar to Bulma. It wasn't until she saw the reflection of her own azure coloring in his eyes that she recognized his purpose for halting her.

"No," she ordered, her eyes bright and wide with apprehension, as he began to tug her toward him, "no, no, no…"

Her rebuffs died against his lips as they pressed down upon her own. Bulma remembered them as being far less rough, even as she conceded to the press of his tongue. She opened her mouth to him, sighing into the space between as he slipped in. It amazed her that despite the passing of time, how almost common this seemed. The twisting of his hand on her arm led her baby-stepping into him.

With expertise, he lifted a hand to angle her head advantageously. Vegeta allowed himself to enjoy the warmth of her, of her mouth, and of her closeness. He guiltlessly reveled in the velvet push of her tongue against his, in the subtle shift of her hips to accommodate him against her. It was shameless of him to think so, but the familiarity of this situation was gradually becoming enticing to him…

Her free hand lifted and fell against his abdomen, her fingers splaying over the muscles that lay beneath his shirt. Upon this furthered intimate contact, Vegeta broke away from her mouth with an agitated rumble. Parting from him with a soft gasp, Bulma found her hooded gaze unable to pull up to his face. Instead, her eyes lingered at his fingers around seemingly fragile wrist.

Apparently taking similar notice of their final physical connection, Vegeta gruffly thrust her back from him, his hand leaping away from her arm as though burned. When her blue eyes flashed upward, he glared out upon the yard, half-turning away from her intrusive staring.

Bulma recognized the tell-tale signs. Stiff jaw. Tight shoulders. Distrustful eyes. As Vegeta distanced himself from her, she found herself lacking the urgency to bring him back that she may have previously possessed. In point of fact, she realized with a twinge of annoyance, there seemed to be more of a necessity for separation.

"There'll be some capsules on the table for you and Trunks to take in the morning." Surprisingly, at least to Vegeta, her voice came out solid and sure. Finality, he thought to himself without taking her in. He felt her move away from him – toward the doors, and he heard them slide open and she paused.

"I know you don't like to hear it, but … do take care, will you, Vegeta?"

Her request was, as expected, met with nothing in response. Heavily, her chest sank, and Bulma watched him turn away quietly to face the umber horizon once again. An inexplicable sadness coursed thoroughly into her veins, seeming to weigh her down as she observed him. Would this be the last time she ever saw him? It would be a classic final visual, she thought to herself, albeit unfulfilling.

As quietly as she had entered, Bulma slipped though the sliding doors. Vegeta would not move again until the assuring click had sounded, and the padding of her feet had led her into the heart of the home and certainly away from him.

Author's Note: Set during the 9 days just before the Cell Games begin.

Been watching the Cell Games on my awesome Dragonball Z DVDs and this idea fluttered into my head. Had to get it out somehow, so here we are! Just a one-shot, though something tells me I maaaaaaay add future installments - I'm thinking, maybe moments throughout Bulma and Vegeta's romance. Who knows.

Please review, let me know what you think! :D :D