Chapter 35b: Last Sunset - Part II
Chronus recoiled and lost control of the powerful blast brewing in his palms, but he never went down, and the flying saiyan had only restored his anger to its fullest capacity. He retaliated, slamming the saiyan with a fist that Vegeta felt through to his spine before whirling around and carrying on his assault with ten more punches to the man's already bruised face. Each one felt like it would crush Vegeta's skull or take his head clean off before the next one knocked him the other way. As the Prince went down he genuinely wondered if any brain damage had occurred, spinning in and out of consciousness for a few prolonged moments before his determined mind finally settled on a decision.
Chronus had turned back to Goku, convinced now that he'd managed to shut up the annoying blue monkey for good. He'd made the mistake before, and each time he'd been proven wrong by Vegeta's unwavering spirit. This time would be no different.
"Leaving already?" rasped the taunting voice.
After managing only a few steps away from the fallen saiyan Chronus turned back around; Vegeta had rolled over onto his back, leaving a pool of blood behind him in the process of staggering back onto one knee. Chronus snarled and slipped back into rage. "Why won't you just die?" he demanded. "What are you?"
The Prince growled in annoyance. "I'm a saiyan you pitiful bastard – the most powerful race in the universe!" He got back to his feet with his shoulders still hunched and one eye still lazily hanging shut. Despite his condition the man carried on his speech, talking to and reassuring himself just as much as he was Chronus. "And I swear, before this fight is over you'll see what we can do!"
Chronus's wordless reply of a shocked and infuriated growl only bolstered Vegeta's ego further. Being on the verge of death didn't faze him at all – that sheer horrifying determination had shown its face that never failed to frighten even the most powerful of foes.
"What's the matter? Getting scared Chronus? That bomb should be ready any second now and I don't think you can hold me off for long enough to do a damn thing about it!"
Chronus roared in a frenzied bloodlust as he set off towards his foe, lumbering like a charging bull towards the unguarded and open saiyan stood half-dead before him. Before he could reach his target however, Vegeta dashed smoothly out of the way and retaliated with a fierce kick propelling the Master up into the skies above the canyon. In thinking the saiyan all but defeated Chronus had attacked lazily; a mistake never missed when presented to a veteran like Vegeta.
He chased the Master into the skies, landing at least half a dozen quick attacks and a finalising blast before Chronus managed to get back in position. Even upon steadying himself the Master found himself suddenly swarmed by a cluster of attacks that he had to retreat further to avoid before finding himself somehow on the back foot and being chased all the way around the huge perimeter of the Spirit Bomb and high into the sky above. Vegeta roared and let fly a string of his best combinations, though upon finishing them without a single hit he found himself once again with no options against the behemoth now back on equal footing.
He tried hopelessly to dash out of the line of fire as quickly as possible, but instead found himself barely ducking under a punch and retaliating with one of his own before Chronus warped behind him, just as he'd done to Gohan. Instead of being stabbed through the back though, the Prince suffered a more prolonged and drawn out method of torture. Grabbing the Prince's left hand hung loosely by his side and twisting it around so that he could grab the thrown punch as well, Chronus managed to quickly reverse Vegeta into a restricting submission with both his arms straight out behind his back and pushing inwards towards one another with a ripping sensation terrorising his shoulder muscles.
In this position the Prince was powerless to do anything; he kicked out with his back foot to try and smash the demon's shin, though moving his leg a mere twitch resulted in his arms being thrust closer together, squeezing out his muscles and pushing his chest unnaturally outwards with an intense pain accompanied by a sadistic laugh in his ear. Below him the Spirit Bomb convulsed and grew even larger as the attack begun to take shape, though even Chronus knew that at this range Goku wouldn't dare throw it even if it was ready.
Chronus pushed the saiyan's arms closer together, resulting in two sickening clicks of unhinging joints as Vegeta's shoulders dislocated right out of their sockets. The Prince let out a scream of pain that could be heard by both Goku down on the planet and only made Chronus push harder. If the backs of his shoulder blades got any closer together his arms would be torn completely from his body, though even in knowing this there was nothing Vegeta could do; he moved his leg again resulting in a twinge of stabbing pain.
"Ah. . . I remember now." Whispered Chronus. "You lost this part of your arm didn't you?"
Vegeta's eyes widened in fear; Chronus knew about the cybernetic limb he had attached to what remained of his right arm, and in knowing that he could exploit the saiyan's most vulnerable weakness.
Instead of pushing his arms further together, Chronus kept the Prince in the same position but only tightened the grip of his right hand that held Vegeta's arm in place. He smirked with a manic satisfaction upon feeling titanium rupture rather than bone as Vegeta roared with an agony like that he'd never felt before. Chronus squeezed tighter, beginning to crush his arm slowly like it was nothing more than an empty tin can. Dozens of the thousands of electrons joined to the expansive network of his nervous system began to tear off with each the pain of an acidic explosion blazing up his right arm. For the first time since receiving his enhancement Vegeta wished he'd let Bulma keep those pain receptors inactive.
A few sparks of electricity jolted from the surface of Vegeta's arm as Chronus burned away at the faux-skin with a small charge of energy, revealing the hardened metal underneath it running in a small ring around his forearm spreading from the spot where he clutched it tightly. Vegeta's scream rang aloud and echoed across the canyon, and for a moment he almost didn't catch the mental voice of his oldest friend ring through his mind across the telepathic link.
Vegeta! It's done! Get out of there! Cried Goku.
Vegeta breathed deeply in spite of the pain and prepared to reply; to tell Kakarot to stop being so soft and throw the damn thing while he still had the chance. Yet before he could make his proud and selfless statement the cry of a familiar attack rang through the air.
"Kamehameha!" called two voices in synchronism.
The first voice was easily recognisable – against Hyperion's better judgement Gohan was back on his feet again, though he was accompanied by another fighter who seemed to have joined the fray when no one noticed. Restored to life by the power of the Dragon Balls, Uub had come back to fight once again, and now the dark-skinned reincarnate seemed more deadly than ever. For all their strength though, the double Kamehameha blast was at a volume that could be merely shrugged off by the almighty Chronus. However in his moment of distraction Vegeta felt the submission loosen with a subtle change so slight that very few would notice it; this was his chance.
As fast as his body would allow, Vegeta wheeled over in a graceful flip and drove his foot sideways into Chronus's jaw with an overhead, soccer-like bicycle kick. The Master's grip loosened further, giving the Prince the room he needed to quickly reposition his feet to plant firmly against the monster's chest and push himself off and out of the devastating hold. He kicked out so hard that he managed to propel the Master out into the depths of space above the planet from the surge of ki he bolted from his feet. With no time to waste Vegeta then raced over to Gohan and Uub and dragged them away from the trajectory of the Spirit Bomb, now swelled up to a mass almost half the size of their beloved Earth.
Kakarot! Throw the Bomb! Throw it now!
Infusing the last of his Super Saiyan 5 power, Goku took one last inhale and let out an almighty scream as he threw the entire weight of the blast upwards, focusing on the massive ki that pervaded the universe above them. Almost immediately he lost control of the Super Saiyan's power and dropped to his knees out of exhaustion with his work done at last. Vegeta landed beside him, followed closely by Uub and Gohan some ten paces behind. The four stared after the Spirit Bomb filling the sky as it lumbered slowly into the planet's atmosphere. They scoped the giant orb with their senses, though in truth only Goku and Vegeta could truly comprehend the bomb's full power.
"You think it's enough?" questioned Vegeta after a few moments.
Goku shook his head. "Of course it is; I made sure that the Spirit Bomb's power outmatches his own!"
"Yeah, but so did Gogeta." said the Prince. "It has to completely dwarf his energy to stand any chance of beating him."
"We don't know that! It should be enough!"
"Kakarot you know as well as I do that 'should' isn't an option here. If this fails then there's nothing else we can do."
Goku gritted his teeth and made a growl of annoyance; the situation infuriated him just like the time he'd been forced to watch Chronus blast planets – he hated being helpless, and now was one of those moments. He was confident in the Spirit Bomb when he'd thrown it, but in being perfectly honest to himself he realised that he would've spent another minute or two finalising it had Vegeta's life not been at stake.
The Prince seemed know this, and yet he didn't berate him for being soft or idiotic as he usually would; he remained calm and focused – collecting his thoughts carefully.
"So what should we do?" asked Goku. "Do we just hope it'll work? I mean it should! I can't put more energy into it now that it's gone!"
Overhead the Spirit Bomb howled as it left the planet and plotted itself on the route of a collision course headed straight for the Z-Fighters' nemesis hovering in limbo above. Vegeta sighed, and for the first time he tore his eyes away from the sky and looked directly at his rival, stood oblivious to his scheme across from him.
"I think I have an idea." He said. "And you're not going to like it."
Goku shot the Prince a funny look before blinking twice and staring blankly. "Huh?"
Vegeta sighed. He looked up the giant asteroid in the sky before looking back to his friend; he'd made his choice already - there was no other way - they had to see this thing through to the very end. "Goodbye Kakarot. . ."
With that, Vegeta took off into the sky, but upon finally realising the nature of his plan Goku managed to follow the saiyan and react quickly enough to grab the blue furred tail of his Super Saiyan 5.
"Vegeta no!" he insisted; a gleam of desperation could then be heard in his plea. "Don't go up there – you'll be killed!"
Vegeta struggled in vain again before looking up to the sky. If he didn't get a move on quickly he'd miss his only chance; he didn't have time to be indecisive here; he had to act now before it was too late. With a feeling of both regret and, admittedly, immense satisfaction, Vegeta reeled backwards for just a split second to put him well within range to smash Kakarot back into the ground with a single punch.
Goku's most basic form was naturally bested by the full force of Vegeta's Super Saiyan 5, causing him to let go of the Prince's tail and allowing him fly up towards the colossal Spirit Bomb above.
"Dad! Are you okay?" Gohan rushed over to his father's side, but before the man even reached him Goku had shot up and out of the crater he'd formed using up what strength he could muster to transform and pursue Vegeta into the clouds. Despite Kakarot being naturally stronger though, the Prince had no worries; he knew that with the lead he had and Kakarot's current state of power there was no way he'd catch up to him in time. He streamed through the third and final layer of cloud cover with the blazing fire of his aura burning away the moisture right before he shot through it. He carried on upwards just another mile in the space of less than a second before hearing the beep of the gravity enhancer strapped comfortably to his left arm, signalling that it had activated automatically upon him leaving this planet's atmosphere.
Moments later Goku reached the same spot, only this time he was forced to turn back. He momentarily choked and experienced a subzero chill far too low for his body to handle thanks to his lack of a device to protect him from the void of space. Once again there was nothing he could do; Chronus had smashed his gauntlet to pieces thanks to his own mistake and Vegeta was now too far away for him now to do anything.
Still the Prince charged up through the darkness of space, headed straight for the mighty Spirit Bomb that resembled a small planet with all the speed his body would allow. It was a devastating attack – the most powerful he'd ever seen, though he did not slow down upon approaching it. He'd heard once from Kakarot that the nature of the Spirit Bomb's energy was to not harm those of a good and true disposition. The explosion was painful to any who came within the blast radius, but only a being of evil could cause it to actually detonate.
He reminded himself about the time facing Majin Buu; he'd been brought back from the dead when Dende had wished for everyone 'not evil' to be brought back to life – surely that would make him exempt from this Spirit Bomb's restrictions too, wouldn't it? On the other hand, the first time he'd fought Kakarot the same attack had been used on him and would've blown his entire body to smithereens had he been just a few years younger. He'd been damaged severely by it back then, so wouldn't the same apply now? Would the Spirit Bomb recognise his latent selfish desires and deem him unworthy? Or could he really, truly have changed for the better? There was only one way to find out.
As a sharpened arrow of pure energy Vegeta made contact with the Spirit Bomb at high speeds, piercing straight through the orb's exterior and into its very depths. He held his breath for just a few moments, though to his pleasant surprise the bomb didn't explode around him – it remained intact and welcomed his presence as Vegeta now found himself quite literally surrounded by the hopes of the entire universe. Despite the bomb being completely blue on the outside, a vast multitude of different colours swum around harmoniously amidst the Spirit Bomb's interior. He was hardly a sentimental person, but even Vegeta found it hard not to appreciate the tranquil beauty that encircled him. Colours he'd never seen before shifted in and out of iridescence before glowing with a metallic tone as different pockets of energy weaved in and out of each other amongst the cluttered space.
But this was no time to admire the scenery; he had work to do and time was running short. As fast as he could, Vegeta made his way to the very heart of the Spirit Bomb and took his position. Down on the rocky planet the three fighters figured that like Hyperion, Vegeta was going to convert himself into energy to fuel the attack even more, however he had a better idea in mind.
Once at the vey core the Prince cast his gaze above, seeing past the swarm of energy through a translucent film of surrounding blue that Chronus stood hovering in space as they hurtled towards him, closing the gap between them with every passing second. With one final attack on his mind, Vegeta took his stance.
"So what do we do? I take it you don't have any new moves?" Goku had asked before.
Vegeta considered for a few moments before shaking his head. "None that I could land. . . Damn it! He's too fast and too strong for us to get anywhere near him!"
Those words he'd said before rung in his head as Vegeta begun transferring energy into his palms; it was true – he'd had no real plan or effective attacks left at the time, but given his current situation the environment was perfect to charge his ultimate technique. He'd not yet mastered it or even controlled the output of energy, but right now it was do or die.
Sparks of the deepest red energy suddenly jolted from the saiyan's hands as he pushed them together in front of him with a pose he'd stricken so many times before. Bolts of electricity cackled, dancing away from his left and ruined right arm from the output of the attack. He began to pour every last scrap of energy he could muster into preparing the beam; with Chronus beating him at every turn he'd had little chance to use the enormous pit of power that had been restored to him from the Elder's wish, and now was the perfect time to put it to good use.
"CRIMSON!" he began; his voice a booming call that echoed across the universe. Somewhere on Earth he somehow felt that Trunks and Bulma had heard his voice and turned their gaze to the skies in amazement. If there was a time to notice him, this would be it; as far as he was concerned, this was his crowning moment.
Through the transparent looking glass of the Spirit Bomb's surface above him Vegeta saw that Chronus had heard his cry and simply chose to ignore it. They were close enough now that he could just about make out the expression upon the tyrant's face, and he was definitely smiling. As they feared, Chronus looked ready to take on the Spirit Bomb after scoping it out and telling himself that he could just about survive, but what he didn't bank on was the saiyan Prince hiding inside, readying a surprise of his own.
A smaller orb of crimson thunder suddenly expanded around Vegeta and made his own personal space amidst the enormity of the planet-sized Spirit Bomb. The attack was beginning to take shape. The ball now forming in the conjoined bridge of his hands grew wider and more unstable by the second, but he had to hold onto it just a little while longer. He knew that he'd not properly mastered the attack yet, and for the most part its main drawback was that it consumed his vital energy, leaving him almost dead upon even one burst. But that wouldn't matter here.
The Galick Gun, the Final Flash and the Final Shine; they'd all been practice - a mere preamble to this: Vegeta's ultimate attack – the pinnacle of destructive energy blasts that came with too heavy a price. The universe had never experienced anything like it before; the fact that just one man could generate such a force was beyond even Chronus's understanding, though it had enough drawbacks to make it impractical save for situations like this one.
The Prince's energy was sucked up by the demanding technique entirely as his right arm became more indentured thanks to the incredible pressure it tried so hard to contain. The attack flared out in an uncontrollable storm of ten foot long tails of red lightning snaking away from the ball of wild ki in his hands that glowed so brightly it looked ready to explode right in front of him.
Vegeta looked up once again; Chronus was now just above them, and the prospect of victory brought a smile to each of their lips. The saiyan thought of his family back home; of the home planet he'd lost, the allies that had fallen around them, and much to his regret, of the saiyan Kakarot. He let his loyalty to each of them fuel him with the strength he needed to prime the blast.
Chronus raised the sword he kept close and swung it down, preparing to transfer energy and bat the Spirit Bomb away using everything he had. As the bladed edge made contact Vegeta let out a primal, untamed roar that shook the universe itself.
From the surface of Vegeta's torn and shredded gloves the Crimson Oblivion exploded as the largest and most devastating energy blast a single being had ever thrown. It soared at the speed of light through the depths of its blue counterpart and rushed to the Spirit Bomb's surface where an unsuspecting Chronus saw his end only a split-second before he met it. The Crimson Oblivion detonated upon impact, and with it, the blast set off the even bigger universal Spirit Bomb as the two combined to create a screaming explosion whose frightening aura of crimson and blue pulsed across the skies of every planet to the far corners of the cosmos.
"Vegeta!" Goku cried up into the explosion. He panicked and looked around; despite the immense display of blooming energy up in space the saiyan knew his friend was still up there somewhere. Using the Instant Transmission he warped back down towards the planet's surface, turning to his son with a frantic expression. "Gohan!"
He didn't have to say any more. Without hesitation Gohan quickly unstrapped the device clinging to his wrist and threw it to his dad. Goku caught it, and without even bothering to strap it on he warped out into space, hoping that the shield would activate automatically whether it was on his wrist or not. Fortunately it hummed to life as he arrived out in the void and left him glancing around desperately between the crumbling rock formations drifting in zero gravity. The meteor fragments coupled with the spiralling wisps of multicoloured light meant he could see or hear little out here, but he didn't have to. Somewhere amongst the void Vegeta's power signal still flickered, and in being much closer to the source Goku zapped quickly to his location before grabbing the saiyan and transmitting them back to the first place that came into his head.
Somehow the Prince was still alive as the two suddenly appeared in a desolate, unremarkable mass of rocky land. Where exactly they'd teleported to Goku had no idea, though he knew instantly what planet he'd taken them to. They were home at last - the distinct gravity of Earth was instantly recognisable, but only one of them had arrived safely. To Goku's dismay, one look at his greatest ally as he settled him down on the ground showed him that Vegeta's body was utterly broken; in finally reverting back to his most basic level the damage was undeniably fatal. His clothes had been slashed a thousand times over to display a river of blood that coated his entire body. Many of his bones were clearly broken and patches of exposed muscle protruded that pained Goku to even look at. His face was slashed with a dozen small yet clearly deep cuts along with the intense burns from the explosion and the darkened bruises that covered his entire frame.
It was just like with Raditz; Goku knew immediately that the saiyan was beyond saving, leaving him powerless to do anything to stop the inevitable.
"Vegeta! Vegeta! Come on Vegeta snap out of it!"
After being surrounded by an immeasurable sea of intrusive journalists, Mr. Satan took his seat at a long, mildly decorated desk. The unruly crowd of a thousand questions were held back by twelve surly bodyguards who tried desperately to keep the reporters from making their way to the champion's desk. Mr. Satan sighed and looked around the room; to his left sat his agent, and behind him sat his publicist, whilst to his right his head trainer sat smugly with his left leg propped up onto his right knee.
They were all either completely clueless or too clever for their own good. The masses would eat up his story just as they'd done time and time again, and those that knew about his biggest secret would never publically confess, since being close to the world champion gave them the kind of benefits you didn't give up so easily.
A small legion of women suddenly swarmed him, quickly wiring him up and pointing him in the direction of a small camera and a screen below. He nodded absently as the entire scene went by in a blur; for once in his life he didn't want to be here - he'd give anything to leave and escape the private shame of it all. Voices filled the room and the snapping clicks of cameras sounded followed by blinding solar flares went off like a chemical reaction. An announcer then demanded silence from the paparazzi whilst a leading woman chewing the end of a pen pointed him to a small screen right below the camera with the autocue ready to begin.
"Mr. Satan, we're rolling in three, two, one. . ."
"Come on Vegeta!" pressured Goku.
After a minute of dazing in and out of consciousness Vegeta finally came to his senses to be greeted only by a world of pain that could mean nothing but approaching death. He blinked twice and inhaled a wheeze of what felt like razorblades down his throat.
"You did it Vegeta." Goku reassured him comfortingly. "The universe is safe now. Thanks to you."
The Prince opened his mouth to speak, finding only that a rasping whisper and a mouthful of blood came to his lips. He steadied himself and tried again. "Idiot. . . It would've done nothing without the Spirit Bomb."
"Well then it's a victory for both of us then."
Vegeta laughed weakly. "I suppose you're right." He breathed painfully. The saiyan looked down to see the sorry state his body was in and groaned uncomfortably in agony. Moving was almost impossible for him – even to blink caused him discomfort.
As the Prince reflected on the battle the air was suddenly filled with a soft, white ash that rained down gently upon the planet. It was like nothing he'd ever seen before and clearly a side-effect of their battle's fantastic climax. He knew that the same phenomenon was occurring across every galaxy, and as he weighed up the rewards of his sacrifice he deduced that it was all worth it. But there was still one thing he had to be sure of.
"Trunks, and Bulma-" He grated out.
"Their fine, don't worry about them – everyone's safe." Goku informed him. With the current situation getting the best of him a few tears streamed down the saiyan's face; there was no use in fighting them now, but it was something he knew Vegeta would berate him for regardless.
"Quit being so soft. . ." Wheezed Vegeta after a toturous cough. "What are you crying about? At least in the afterlife I'll be free of this ridiculous arm and be back to my old self." He held up the barely attached prosthetic of his right arm that still sparked like exposed circuitry and remained completely crushed at the centre.
"People of the Earth," Hercule read aloud from the autocue. "As many of you may know, last week a great evil terrorized and attacked our planet, thinking it could boss us around and enslave humanity for its own personal satisfaction." He spoke in a bored and distant monotone like a jaded news announcer with a hangover; he was completely devoid of the usual over the top charisma and made many of the journalists and bodyguards look to one another in confusion as he continued. "Well I'm here to tell you that the Earth is in danger no more. Once again I marched up to his evil face and I. ."
For the first time in his public career Mr. Satan's composure wavered and he hesitated for just a few seconds.
"I. . ." he tried again as the lines of his autocue slowly scrolled up and off the screen. The leading cameraman peered out from behind the lens as the woman who'd pointed him to the screen looked frantic, ushering him on in a silent mime to hurry up.
"I can't do this." Hercule finished. Appalled stares from the woman by the autocue and the higher-ups that surrounded him were suddenly fixated on the world champ, though he'd now decided that he didn't deserve that title; enough was enough.
"People of the Earth." He began again, this time completely disregarding the autocue and ignoring the hectic beckoning of his advisors whilst slipping back into his usual charming persona. "I did not defeat Cell!" he announced.
Gasps of shock and bewilderment echoed around the mob of journalists beyond the panel. His agent jumped to his feet, though would never dare challenge the champ himself. News reporters hastily checked to see if they'd caught the legend's sudden confession on camera, but he wasn't finished yet; not by a long way.
"And I did not defeat Majin Buu!" he continued. He savoured the reactions and suppressed a laugh at how amazed these people were whilst silently wishing he'd done this years ago. "And those events on the moon; where we all got our minds taken over! I had nothing to do with that either. Those people who transported you to safety – they weren't my associates or my apprentices, they were the ones you should've been thanking!"
"Kakarot. ." said Vegeta once again as he put on his most determined expression that looked obscure amidst the mess of his damaged face. "Help me stand. ." Using all the energy he had left, the Prince managed to raise his left arm and motion for a hand from his rival. It was something he'd never normally consider; receiving help for anything from Kakarot was a strict no in his code of honour, but he'd come this far, and wanted to be on his feet in his moment of victory; in his moment of death.
Goku fought back more tears and reluctantly grasped the saiyan's hand. He hoisted him up with another splash of blood leaving a small lake of it behind where Vegeta had lain. After staggering initially the Prince rested his left hand on Goku's shoulder for support and managed to stand despite everything. He breathed deeper than ever now as each exhale grew longer and throatier. The end was near, but for some reason he didn't care. Feeling the spongy ash fall upon the back of his neck from the sky, standing face to face with his greatest friend and rival and experiencing the aftermath of his biggest victory; this was how he knew it should be.
Goku suppressed the urge to remain upset in one final effort that succeeded eventually; there was nothing he could do now – Vegeta had chosen this willingly of his own accord. Tears would solve nothing and would only serve to make the Prince resent him more in his final moments. He had to remain strong now; to prove himself worthy of being this man's rival and ensure that his last moments here were comforting. He knew just what to say.
"You mentioned once that when we fought we'd need a whole planet as our battleground. . ."
Vegeta looked up in wonder as if he'd seen the light at the end of the tunnel. From his slumped position leaning on Goku's shoulder he suddenly straightened and met the saiyan's eyes once again.
"Well how about a whole galaxy?" Goku finished. He cracked a smile, and so did Vegeta.
The Prince chuckled and his smile widened a little; the idea comforted him greatly; knowing that one day the two would finally get a chance to fight one another again in a time of peace sounded like the best idea ever to the both of them. "I can't wait." He rasped.
With nothing more to say, Vegeta closed his eyes and finally drew his last breath. His body faded slowly into nothingness as he passed over to the other side, no doubt regaining his true self free of injuries and with a new, organic arm to practice with. He didn't know when exactly it would be, but he knew that one day, in this life or the afterlife, in one year or a hundred, the two would meet again. And with that to look forward to the saiyan would use every day to prepare, waiting for that fated moment when they, the universe's two greatest heroes, were reunited once again.
"So why am I telling you this?" questioned Mr. Satan hypothetically. "Naturally, I also had nothing to do with these recent events either. Some true heroes – the ones who've saved you all these years – fought in the battles that surrounded them." He looked down regrettably for a few moments before addressing the camera once again. "Not all of them made it out alive." He revealed. "There were casualties on our side that sacrificed themselves for us to come out on top; ladies and gentlemen this was not a great success but a hollow victory for planet Earth. One man in particular, who has defended us time and time again, suffered more than any of us could ever imagine to save a planet that he wasn't even born on! And this isn't the first time either! Warriors have given their lives before; and I've grown tired of taking all the credit for their noble sacrifice!"
By now the audience of journalists had grown silent in the wake of Mr. Satan's inspiring, daring and terrifying speech. Even the persistent woman who'd counted him in looked speechless with her jaw hung aloft in shock and horror as the pen fell from her mouth. Hercule took a deep breath and finalised his memorable announcement.
"So ladies and gentlemen - people of the Earth. I must ask you to bow your heads for a moment in respect to these warriors who live among us, and have saved us more times than you or even I know. Because more than me or any other fake out there; whether they were born on this planet or not, they are the true champions of Earth."
A whole hour had passed, yet Goku never moved from that spot. He stood still; only waiting for the evening to come with a breeze that swept through his hair as he savoured the victory and remembered all the times he'd shared with Vegeta – both the good and the bad. It shouldn't have ended like this; he didn't deserve to die again – someone who'd given so much deserved more than that. Goku had quickly realised with the Namekian Dragon Balls out of commission; and probably for a very long time out of the fear of overuse, that there was no visible way to restore life to the Prince of all Saiyans or any of the others. The prospect infuriated Goku; why should Vegeta, Piccolo and Raditz be punished for all this? It was in thinking this over that Goku clenched his fist tightly enough to draw blood in his frustration. He turned around slowly and begun to walk away as the setting red sun winked its final rays of crimson light behind him.
Vegeta. . . Guys. . . He thought only in his own mind, promising only himself to do what was necessary. I swear that I'll find some way to bring you back. Dragon Balls or no Dragon Balls, you deserve to be here in this time of peace. Our fight isn't over Vegeta; I promised you we'd finish what we started, so no matter what: I'll find a way. . .
And so there you have it folks. Thank you guys so much for reading and in particular all you guys who've sent me messages and stuff, you've really helped me with everything. As for me, I've had a brilliant time writing Dragon Ball AF, especially this final chapter. Say what you will, but I'm actually kind of sad after writing that. Anyway it was inevitable; I had this planned from the start so I wasn't about to go back on it after all that preparation
Oh and just for the record, I mentioned it a few times but just to be clear Vegeta's Crimson Oblivion isn't as powerful as the enormous Spirit Bomb, but its massive strength was required to defeat Chronus. I know that of the three titans Vegeta is the weakest, so him having the biggest single ultimate attack doesn't make much sense (it goes Crimson Oblivion, Darkness Buster and Dragon Kamehameha in order of power) but it uses up all of his power and life force energy so it does sort of make sense in a Dragon Ball kind of way, and Vegeta's the kind of guy who does stuff like that anyway.
And I told you guys that the Vegeta's arm subplot wasn't just over like that! - Tien got his arm back after having it blasted off by Nappa and Chiaotzu got his entire body restored so it makes sense that Vegeta would get the same treatment.
I know a lot of people don't like Mr. Satan and the timeskip ending might have gotten confusing but it's just one of those things I thought would be effective. Mr Satan coming clean and developing some humility may not be totally in character but I like to think that by GT's end he'd gained some perspective and regretted his actions somewhat.
Hmm, what else? . . Heheh, Uub got no lines aside from 'Kamehameha'. . . And when I said two more good guys were gonna die, I never said I'd exclude the one you already thought was dead! (Hyperion got to die twice!) Pssh, and you all probably thought I was going to kill Gohan when he got stabbed. . .
I guess the only thing left to do now is the disclaimer that I've forgotten about up until now and rip off TeamFourStar :S
Dragon Ball AF: The Room of Spirit and Time Saga is a non-profit and purely fan made story. Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball GT are all owned by Funimation, Toei Animation, Fuji TV and Akira Toriyama, so support the official release! . . .
. . .
IIII smell a sequel!
Dragon Ball AF: The (insert awesome name here) Saga! Coming March 20th 2011!
Stay tuned :D
1ST MARCH 2011 UPDATE:
Finally the picture of Chronus is up on my profile. Honestly I've had it finished for like a month now aside from colouring in his belt but I just kept putting it off for one reason or another. Even before that I did so many drafts of him that I just got sick of it eventually, the final product still doesn't look ideal to me, but at least it's something and I promised you guys that much at least. Again I'm sorry it took so long to do but then again I've said before that I always consider myself a writer and not an artist - I'd hope you guys read Dragon Ball AF for the writing and not the art since you'd be left pretty disappointed it you relied on the drawings - like I said, I'm no artist, the drawings are just something to give it extra flavour.
The sequel is still happening at the date I specified above and I've been plotting it for quite some time now so I'd say it promises to be better than The Room of Spirit and Time Saga (which I made almost completely spontaneously - it was originally supposed to just be a short story a few chapters long about Trunks and Vegeta in the Room). I still don't actually have a name for it but I reckon I should be able to think up of one in time. For those who are interested I'm also writing a brand new fanfiction which also plans to be a huge, multi-installment story like Dragon Ball AF. It's not on Dragon Ball this time but it is on a certain anime that I guaruntee you'll have at least heard of, and it's not a spin-off or a carry-on like AF, it's a brand new 100% original fanfiction, set in only the universe of the anime along a completely different timeline (so even if you don't like the anime in question you might even find yourself liking this story xD). It'll start in about two weeks since I'm on holiday in Bulgaria next week and it'll run alongside Dragon Ball AF.
But just let me make this clear - this will not affect Dragon Ball AF in any way. You'll probably think my time and attention is divided and therefore DBAF will come out slower than usual, but I promise you this will not be the case. Having another project breaks monotony and I have plenty of time to write both in regular installments. It's actually really common; many writers have two or three projects so that they can flip between them to stop them getting bored of one. I'm an aspiring writer so I write other stuff aside from Fanfiction in the hope that it'll be one day published. Including Dragon Ball AF and the new fanfiction I'm working on I've got an A, B, C and a D project - I'm juggling four things here, but at least I'm drawing the line at that many, five would be a stretch. xD