Baba's Price

Part Two

Aftermath


- Videl


Right after mom went back to Heaven, I cried for some time in daddy's big, strong, hairy arms. He held me close to him and I think he was crying too, as silently and as discreetly as he possibly could, because I heard some sniffling and muffled sobs every now and then.

Ever since my birth, mom had meant the world to me, and dad was the goofy man who would make funny poses and faces to make me laugh. I guess that's how he got into his famous "Mr. Satan Poses" whenever he was in front of an audience; he must have taken a liking to it.

Mom meant the world to him, too, and when I came along, he'd call us his "favorite little things", because he was so much bigger and taller than the both of us. He still is to me now; I guess I got more of my mom's side in physical terms. But my eyes are as blue as his, and we both have this same fighting spirit, this same fascination for strength and martial arts. That was why we both entered and won our own category of the Tenkaichi Budokai, hardly three weeks before the Cell Games. That, but also because we both needed a win really, very badly, after the year or so of mourning the most important and dearest person of our lives.

It was so sudden. When mom died, I mean. It was so sudden we hardly had enough time to realize she was leaving for good. One minute she was laughing and happy, and the next she would be clutching at her chest and cry out in pain and collapse from agony. Even when she eventually fell unconscious, she would thrash about and clutch at her heart and scream, as if she was having a horrible and painful nightmare.

And when she died in that hospital room, her life only maintained by all those machines connected to her and looking peaceful only because of all the drugs they had to give her in order to relieve the pain, neither me nor daddy even had time to say goodbye, let alone speak to her, and it took the both of us a good while to actually realize that she was gone, and would never be coming back home with us.

She had been in hospital for only a few days, a week at most—those times are so blurry to me now, I barely remember what happened except for waiting in the nursery and crying a lot. Daddy comforted me as best he could, by trying to cheer me up and even doing his most hilarious poses to make me laugh again. It only got me to smile and maybe chuckle once or twice, but it did help to get my mind off crying and worrying about mom's worsening condition. And I guess daddy felt the same way, too.

So when the doctors told us to go home and get some rest, we weren't really aware that mom was gone until we got into our modest but comfy home, only to find it so… empty. Lifeless.

And we've had the exact same way to try and forget about the pain and the feeling of loss and injustice, burning us from inside out. Martial arts. Training. Practicing, every hour of the day, each day of the week. Get better. Stronger. Faster. More skilled. Always. We wouldn't even train together; we'd just go to the martial arts dojo closest to the house—it never felt like "home" after mom passed away—and sometimes to the gym to get more physical strength more quickly and efficiently. Once there, we trained apart from one another, each at their own level, so that either would get in the way of the other's training. We would have lunch and dinner there, and leave every day after breakfast. Daddy even got me out of school that year and hired a tutor so that I could still study at my own pace. But back then, martial arts were all that mattered for our broken family.

So, a year or so later, around March and April, the 24th Tenkaichi Budokai, also known as the World Martial Arts Tournament, was promoted and it was officially announced that the tournament was to be hosted on the 7th of May once again, on the very same island, and after years of interruption due to the destructive last world tournament, as well as ten years of constant reconstruction of the bigger part of the island. They built a whole new stadium and advertised hugely to get as many participants and spectators as possible. They even opened a junior division to get younger martial artists to enter the tournament as well.

The D-Day, on the 7th of May, my dad rented a jet copter and we flew over there together. We were excited and already day-dreaming of the prize and recognition we'd get once we had both won. Because there was no way we wouldn't win, we both got almost inhumanly strong, and I was too shaped up for a girl my age. Dad was so powerful, too, he accidentally crushed some ribs and bones of his opponent in the semifinals, and got the best score at the punching machine; so much, actually, that he was actually asked to punch again; the workers there weren't sure if the machine program was actually reliable. As for me, I didn't even have to try to beat guys almost twice my age and won so easily, it almost wasn't fun. Almost, of course, because going all out on real flesh and blood was a lot more fun than hitting a punching bag or training alone. I'd never gone all out on anyone up until the tournament, not even on the older students at the dojo, because there wasn't really a point to beat them up until they were knocked out.

But at the Tenkaichi Budokai, junior as well as adult division, it was the most important part of the tournament rules: fighting with everything you've got until your opponent either forfeits, touches the surface outside the ring, or stays unconscious for at least ten seconds. And before the final round, I did all of those more than once. It felt awesome.

When I won, my dad was already there from the adult division eliminatory session, and I jumped into his big powerful arms as soon as I saw his face in the cheering crowd.

"I'm so proud of you, sweetie pie. You will be stronger than your old daddy in no time at this rate," he told me as he hugged me tightly.

"What? No way! You're the strongest man alive and no one will ever be stronger than my daddy! I bet you scored so high, they were all scared to death and all wished they could leave the tournament, hahaha!" I laughed and hugged him more tightly. And I was right about that part, too.

I always liked his hairy nature. It must sound weird, but ever since I was a little girl, I would love when his hairy face and mustache would tickle me when he would give me a big kiss or when I would kiss his ill- shaven cheek, or even when he would rub the side of his much bigger face against my tiny one. Just like how he was doing right then.

That was the best day of my life, and it got better and better when daddy won the adult division so easily, too, that even his last opponent at the final round didn't stand a chance. It was just a professional wrestler who used raw strength to crush his adversaries, with no real skill and fighting technique. And even then, his hits didn't so much as bruise my dad's iron-like skin. I guess the past year of training really was too much for a regular human to handle. But we both got used to it quite fast, and worked out even when feeling sore all over. It was better than thinking of mom's abrupt death.

I still can't believe these past 24 hours were real. I actually got to see my still dead mom, spent all the day just the two of us, and when daddy got home, too, it felt like she never died at all and had been living with us all along. I still wish she would stay home with us, but she told me a bit about how it was up there, in heaven. They weren't allowed to keep contact or check on the people they left behind, in the living world. They were to spend all eternity up there anyway, so it really felt like waiting for your birthday gift every year, and seeing what it was and if you're going to like what people get you or who will remember and wish happy birthday to you at all. In the end, though, even if it's a crappy home-made gift or even just a birthday card or simply a few kind words to wish you a happy birthday, you always keep it dearly, because this gift is a memory, a souvenir, of that special someone who was so kind as to offer you a present to celebrate the day you were born.

Gohan… I just can't believe how sweet and kind his heart is. That boy must have the best and purest intentions in the whole world. I can hardly fathom just how such a wonderful and amazing person ended up having romantic feelings for me, of all people. I wonder how that happened. Since when did he start to like me in that way? Why me? Sure, I'm not ugly or anything, and Sharpner keeps hitting on me and trying to flirt with me, but that's only because we've known each other for so long, that he's the only one daring to approach me in that kind of way. And he's strong enough to take a hit, so it serves as a warning to other, less wanted guys. Like I have time for a stupid boyfriend anyway. Sharpner is just not my type of boy, I was never into long-haired, blond guys—sorry Sharpy. But I'm not worried about him, he's got tons of girlfriends and they are all so silly and girly, I sometimes wonder if he actually wants to date me, or if he's just regularly hitting on me for old times' sake. I would probably feel weird at first, if he were to suddenly stop our daily routine. It is kind of a stress relief to punch him in the face once in a while. I guess I got used to it over time and don't really mind his flirtatious antics. It's just the way he is, and Sharpner is one of my best friends, along with Erasa.

And Erasa is friendly and nice to just about everybody. She had a major crush on Gohan when he first got into Orange Star High. But Gohan didn't seem the type to be interested in having a girlfriend at the time.

"My mom got me into high school so I could study and learn new things in a real school. She homeschooled me from as soon as I could talk, and then I just studied by myself as I grew older. I don't think she would be happy if I got distracted with having a girlfriend, and I don't want to make her upset. I'm not in any kind of rush to have a girlfriend or go on dates and such, anyway, it's not like I'm going to die tomorrow, you know?"

Those were his exact words when Erasa kind of asked him out, barely a few days after he started attending high school. I would know: Erasa asked me to come for support, and to give her enough courage to tell him that she really liked him. I had never, ever seen her get so nervous about a boy before, but Gohan wasn't any random boy. He was the kind of person who actually enjoyed learning in class and listened intently to each and every teacher while taking notes. He was the type of guy that never hesitated to help his peers, be it in tutoring or carrying books for a random girl while having a small, nice chat with her as he walked with her to class. He was also so nice and friendly to just about anyone and everyone that even the "geek" or "bookworm" comments stopped pretty fast around school. Only Sharpner keeps calling him Brains or Mountain Boy and such, but that's just his own way of being friendly, really.

And of course, on top of all those qualities, Gohan is very, very handsome and charming, and he doesn't even seem to realize just how good looking and attractive he is, or how the girls would stare and sigh dreamily whenever he passed by them, so oblivious and adorably clueless.

And he likes me. Me, Videl. The daughter of the man who is called by all the inhabitants of the planet "the world savior" and "the strongest man alive". Daddy may be not strong enough to lift a bus effortlessly like Saiyaman, and maybe he didn't even actually kill this Cell monster, but who cares? He's the best dad one could ever have, and he's the only parent, the only family I've had those past eight years.

But Gohan, he… He just doesn't care about my dad's worldwide notoriety and wealth. When Erasa told him I was his daughter, he looked more surprised by the fact that the famous Mr. Satan even had a daughter at all. Then, while getting a good look at me, he honestly said that he would never have figured that out by himself, as my dad and I didn't really look alike.

"Oh, but you've got the same eye color," he then remarked absentmindedly. Then after a short while, he asked, "are you into martial arts like your father, too?"

It's crazy when I think back about it. Gohan was more interested in my life, as the daughter of the current World Champion, than the Champ himself; and learning in the process that I was also the last Junior World Champion, he got so excited, like a little boy really, when I told him how easily I beat all of my opponents and won the Junior Champion Belt when I was only ten years old. I was trying to be nonchalant and act like it was nothing, like I would usually do when others would ask about it, but it really wasn't easy. Gohan had that child-like innocence lighting up his dark eyes in such a way, that it made me feel like I was back to being ten years old again and won the junior division just yesterday, telling a random little boy about my victory. I remember getting a weird, but kind of nice and confusing feeling in my stomach back then, but brushed it off as the excitement I felt the day daddy and I both became World Champions.

I guess I just didn't want to admit it or think about it too much, back when we first met. Right now, I'm pretty sure I was just beginning to really like Gohan, from his very first day at school and as my classmate. But he was so suspicious looking and dressed like that Golden Fighter who had just appeared out of nowhere and stopped crime in Satan City three or so times before Gohan got into Orange Star High, and the golden haired superhero just so happened to have the Orange Star High badge pinned on his black vest, as the various witnesses told me, the exact same way my new classmate had his. Not to mention, spiky hair with a lone strand, long and thick enough to be noticeable by the passers-by who saw him dispose of the criminals so easily, it didn't even look real, although it was obvious that there weren't any tricks involved. They said he sometimes had some sort of a golden aura around him, looking like he was surrounded by golden flames, matching his unusual hair color. I actually never met this golden fighter person, as he would've always been long gone once I got to the crime scene, after being called for help by the police. The hair color didn't match, but that wouldn't stop me from suspecting Gohan to be this "superhero" character, what with that odd group of fighters that were present at the Cell Games. Some of them had that same hair color, and they could actually change it at will. And I would never, ever forget the little boy around my age, fighting so bravely a monster as powerful and scary as Cell.

That boy is probably the real world savior, when I think about it.

I really missed my mom. When we got in my room and we talked about Gohan, Saiyaman, and the Golden Fighter's possible shared secret, I realized just how much it affected me not to have a mom during my teenage years. My seventeenth birthday was yesterday, after all, and mom died just before I could celebrate the ninth anniversary of the day she gave birth to me, daddy by her side. So when she told me that trying and forcing Gohan or Saiyaman's secrets out of them was wrong because they probably just want to live like anybody else, it really made me realize just how stupid and immature I have been with both my classmate and crime fighting partner—well, sort of; I still don't like it when he comes to a crime scene when I don't really need his help. Yesterday, though, I really saw him in a whole different light. He fought those five remaining guys with such brute force and barely contained anger, that I got actually worried for a second that he was going to kill them all.

But it's not in his nature to kill people. He hardly even hurts the criminals usually, just knock them out enough to let the police officers arrest them and bring them safely to the police station. And when he would accidentally hit a criminal too hard every now and again, he'd actually apologize to the law breaker and tell the police force what to do in order to fix the guy up until the arrival of the ambulance. Saiyaman really seems to know a whole lot about physical injuries; I wonder if it's from past fights or the training that he probably went through when he was younger, or if he's just really well informed in that stuff or something. I just want to know if he's really Gohan or not, I truly wish he'd tell me himself… Maybe if we become closer, he'd trust me enough to tell me his secret. I do plan on becoming his girlfriend, after all.

And from his unexpected confession and everything he's told me yesterday, I'm pretty sure he wouldn't mind having me as his girlfriend. I'm really excited about seeing him again tomorrow at school, and the odd, nice feeling is back full force in my stomach when I try and picture how exactly I'm going to ask him out. I still haven't decided what I'm going to do or say to him when I see him tomorrow. I never felt so giddy and happy before. Monday just can come fast enough.

It's already night actually, and I should be sleeping by now. I'm exhausted because of yesterday; we did pull an all-nighter to spend as much time together as possible. Then mom had to leave for heaven with that odd, old woman—how can her crystal ball float about as she's sitting on it? I really do wonder how Gohan knows her at all…

"Don't forget to thank Gohan properly."

Those were her last words to me before going back to where she belongs, the other world. And she's right, that's exactly what I should be doing tomorrow. I will thank him for the wonderful birthday gift he's given me. He said it was because he's got feelings for me, but I think Gohan is just so kind that he would do anything he possibly could to cheer anyone up if they're down or sad at their birthday. I still wonder why he chose that very day to confess his feelings to me… He didn't even look like he wanted to tell me at first, like it was something he must do, not something he wanted to do. He didn't even ask for a response and would have left just like that had I not held him back.

Gosh, I don't remember ever blushing because of a boy until Gohan, and Saiyaman, too, got into my life and turned it upside down. Even if most of the masked hero's face was hidden by that orange helmet of his, from his jaw line and lips, I always could tell that he must be really handsome, in addition of the very athletic built. And Gohan, well… I think I've already named his numerous charming qualities, haven't I? And when he told me all the things he liked about me… I shiver as I think back to his words …

"I just like you, Videl, because you're so beautiful and so strong, and you're always willing to help those in need, risking your life doing so – though I'm always worried about you in those cases"

No one ever told me such beautiful things like Gohan did yesterday, and he was really just honestly answering my question.

He thinks I'm beautiful. He knows me well enough to understand why I was actually fighting crime. People thought I just wanted to become famous with my own name, instead of my father's. But really, I don't care about being famous at all, and I'm proud of my father and his heritage. He's the current World Champion and I won the Junior Division; if people who were smarter and knew just a little more about the history of martial arts, they would know better. But I don't care. Gohan knows. He knows and saw right through my tough girl act, and understood why I fight crime in Satan City in the first place. It wasn't like the police force were incompetent or couldn't handle themselves, but the crime rate went so high up those past years, I couldn't just stand there and watch people get hurt or shot at when I have so much strength in my possession. My goal had never been to be the strongest, or the world champion, or even get the recognition. I just wanted to make my dad proud of me, and fighting had always been fun and easy to me, really. I don't know if I'm naturally gifted or if it's that year of constant training after mom's death, but beating people twice my side and age has never been much of a problem to me.

To think Gohan may as well be Saiyaman after all. He did say that he liked the look I'd get whenever I'm fighting, but Gohan, my classmate, has never been present while I fought criminals and handed their broken bodies over to the police forces—what can I say, those guys' attitude and evil doing nature just pisses me off, so why would I hold back at all? I don't even wear weapons or anything anyway, whilst they always point those disgusting guns at me, so they had it coming.

As for the Great Saiyaman, well, he only ever makes an appearance when I get called in critical situations by the police and sometimes, on week-ends or after school hours, I'd hear of his newest heroic action on the news, then I'd rush wherever he is and try to get answers out of him. But like yesterday, the only answer I ever get when I ask him who he really is, is that teasing and knowing smile of his. It's like he actually likes it each and every time I ask him that question, and is waiting for me to ask it at every encounter between the two of us. It's like, he's actually enjoying it and just wait for me to ask him that question even when the criminals are taken care of! God, how could I have been so blind! It's so obvious now, Gohan has always been Saiyaman, and he's started to like me the more I got curious and suspicious over either of his identities! That boy actually likes the attention; I can't believe it! Both of my crushes have been liking me since the very beginning!

I think I'm just going to kiss him tomorrow. I don't think I can wait for his reaction and answer if I just ask him out. I want to be with him even more badly now that I know who he really is. I think I'm actually falling quite hard for him… I never thought I would ever fall in love so fast, and he actually confessed his feelings to me the day I turned seventeen! Gosh, I wish I could just fly over to his country home and just tell him how I feel about him, too. What am I thinking? It would probably get just as long if not longer, to fly to his mountain district in my jet copter than sleep the rest of the night. It's long past midnight, in fact, so it's already Monday now. I should get a least a few hours of sleep before morning. I can't wait to see him at school in a few hours!

I never thought I'd ever think this but, being in love is such a wonderful feeling. I do hope Gohan will stay my only true love, I won't handle losing him, and I never want to be heartbroken again.

If there's any God or divinity up there listening to my thoughts… Please, don't ever let anything bad happen to Gohan. I don't think I'll be able to live it through if I ever lost him… I know he's strong and powerful, but if there were any more monsters like Cell in the future… I just hope Gohan will come back safely after the battle. I can't ask him not to fight, just like I wouldn't listen to him if he ever told me to stop fighting crime. I know he'd never ask me something like that though, that's one of the reasons I love him so much.

Wow, I love Gohan… I really do love him. I hope he doesn't freak out too much once I tell him just how much he means to me. I love him so much, it's hard to believe that just yesterday, I still couldn't decide what my feelings for him meant. And here I am now, head over heels in love with a boy, a young man in fact, I hardly know anything about, and met barely a month ago. And all this happened on my birthday.

Scratch what I said about the Tenkaichi Budokai being the best day of my life. I think I've just found two new best days of my whole life. And I get the feeling that it's only the beginning.


- Gohan


I think I must be dreaming. Yes, that's it: this is all a dream. There's just no way what just happened is real. I cannot believe it. It's just another of those dreams I've been having since I started attended school and met Videl. It just can't be. I mean, why would Videl kiss me at all? I'm just the weird new kid who's got lots of secrets as well as a secret superhero identity that she isn't aware of. So there, I get it now. I am dreaming about Videl liking me back, that's all. No reason to get worked up about another one of those dreams.

But that kiss felt so real… My dreams about Videl never get so far usually. At most, she pecks me on the lips or the check after a very nice date we've just had. But this…

"Wow…"

It was real. It actually happened. Videl kissed me. And I kissed her back. And it felt like the time stopped around us, until it was becoming hard to breath, even for me, after all those years of training and the stamina I've gotten thanks to that. Maybe it was because of my heart, it felt like it was soaring in my chest, even now it's still not calmed down.

"Gohan, what are you doing still standing in the corridors? Hurry and get to class!"

"Whoaaahh!"

Err, that was me getting startled to death from the sudden outburst which brought me out of my thoughts so abruptly… that I actually fell backward, and on my backside, too. Good thing it can't really hurt me.

"What is wrong with you today?" Ah, I know that voice. As I turn my head to look at its owner, I see that indeed, it's my English teacher, but she's teaching another class now, it seems. Well, at least the door of her current classroom is closed and the kids on there didn't see me fall to the floor like that, hehe… No need to add any more clumsy moments on my already long list since my first day here, right?

I get up quickly and back onto my feet, and laugh nervously while absentmindedly rubbing my neck.

"Haha, yeah, uhm… Guess I should get going then! Thanks for the warning, Miss Robins; I guess I kind of got lost in my thoughts, hahaha…"

"Well hurry up, then. To think you were actually on time for once, you're lucky to be smart enough not to need much direction from your teachers…" she mused as I got my things that fell from my messenger bag when I fell and dusted my pants off.

I grin at her, ready to sprint to my classroom. "I think the teachers here are great, and it's much more interesting than learning alone at home with books, to actually have someone who can answer my questions and deepen my knowledge in that way. I wish I could've got into public schools much sooner; high school is so much better and fun than homeschooling! And I don't get distracted by my little brother here, hahaha…"

My English teacher stared at me with raised brows and eyes blinking as I grinned wider and waved goodbye to her, and then took off quickly—but not too fast, as I couldn't run with too much speed when I still was in my teacher's sight.

I still got to my classroom in less than a minute. But once I was at the door, I abruptly stopped in mid-move when I reached for the handle. What happened just before the bell rang hit me harder than before.

Dende, Videl's actually kissed me! Oh my, oh my, and she's right behind that door, barely two seats away from my regular place, next to Erasa. What should I do? What am I supposed to tell her? What did that kiss mean at all? She said "thank you" when we pulled apart and she turned away. Does that mean it was just that? A thank you kiss? Do city people actually give kisses like that when they want to thank you? Gosh, I'm so confused; I really wish I could understand girls better… or at all, for that matter.

The janitor passed by behind me and asked why I wasn't going in the classroom. Ah! Shoot, I'm even later to that class than I already was! And I like economy and statistics, too, I don't want to miss more of it!

Haa… Forget it, I can't be any later to class as it is, good thing my grades are good enough not to get yelled at by teachers, mom would kill me if I ever got punished by a teacher, and she would pound that scary frying pan of hers on my head for the rest of my days on Earth if she ever finds out I've had detention! Ahhh, I've got to get into class, I don't want to see that deadly weapon of hers EVER!

…And then I broke the door off its hinges.


- Narrator


"There's no need to make such an entrance to make your late presence known, Gohan. A simple knock on the door would have been enough, you know."

'And here I hoped for no more clumsy moments today,' thought Gohan while he scratched at his hair and chuckled nervously as the young male teacher got the class laughing discreetly at his teasing comment.

"Well, I guess we'll ask for a new door later. Go to your seat now, Gohan, we were only getting started on the next lesson in the book. Page 107."

But Gohan suddenly forgot his current predicament as he took a nervous glance towards his row. And then he locked eyes with the main subject of his thoughts.

Dende, how he loved her smile. And her eyes looked both amused and… dreamy?

'Eh? Am I seeing right? This couldn't be it though… could it?'

Was it actually love, that he was seeing in her sparkling blue eyes?

He then heard the teacher, Mr. Hobbs, chuckle softly, and blinked out of his musing as he turned to look at one of his favorite teachers of Orange Star High.

"Why don't you go up to your seat, Gohan? You should have a better view of your girlfriend up there."

"Huh? Wait... Did you say girlfriend..? Videl's not my…" Gohan stopped in mid-sentence and his eyes widened as realization and comprehension hit him even harder than before. Videl… she actually kissed him right in the middle of the corridors, still full of students and wandering teachers!

The whole school must know about it!

Oh no, with Videl's popularity in Satan City, it's going to become worldwide news in no time!

'Nooo! Mom's gonna find out! Oh no, oh no, please, dear and good Dende that I've saved so many times… do something and help your old friend!'

Gohan actually heard chuckling again, but this time it was coming from inside his mind! And it wasn't even the Namekian Guardian he had been praying to just now!

'Sorry kid, Dende's too busy right now. But this really does get entertaining; Baba was actually right about that.'

'Wha…? Piccolo! Why on earth are you spying on my life and making fun of me in my mind? I asked Dende for help, not you!'

This time he actually heard his mentor laugh all out in his mind. 'Stop laughing at me in my head, I can't hear myself thinking with you making so much noise!'

But it didn't stop.

"Hey, Gohan, are you alright? You're not upset about what I said just now, are you?" asked Mr. Hobbs.

"Huh? Oh, no! It's not that at all, haha… I just realized something all of sudden and got lost in thought, that's all, really."

'You've gotten better at telling half-truths. That girl's constant nosiness and questioning did some good on you after all,' he heard Piccolo comment in his mind.

'Shut up, Piccolo. I can't focus on my class if you speak to me whenever you feel like it. Now go away, I've got to get to my seat.'

He heard Piccolo laugh some more, and he clenched his fist as the green man's mocking laugh was really getting on his nerves.

'JUST GO AWAY, DAMMIT!' Gohan screamed in his mind.

'Hahaha, as you wish, kid. I haven't heard you swear since you got back to being a momma's boy... I guess you really are turning into a man now. I feel like crying in pride.'

Clutching his jaw tightly, his fingers still tightly closed into nearly white fists, Gohan decided to ignore Piccolo's mocking tone and went up to sit in his assigned place. After another few moments of hearing his former alien teacher laugh some more, the green pest finally cut the communication.

'Damn you, Piccolo. I hope you burn in hell." Gohan mentally cursed when Piccolo was finally gone from his mind. Or so he thought.

'That actually sounds nicer than hanging out with Son when I die. I do want to get revenge on Frieza and Cell… and I never got to fight King Cold…'

'Shut up. Go musing about your afterlife elsewhere. Or better yet, get to hell right about now, since you sound so excited to fight the bad guys that Dad, Trunks and I already defeated years ago, you so-called Super Namek.'

'Ouch, that hurts. You are quite moody today. Do teenage boys have moody periods like girls do, too? Being an asexual alien and all, I don't really know how puberty works for humans.'

'Shut up. Or you can get sent to Hell by a pissed off Super Saiyajin 2 in a few minutes. Your choice.'

'You would actually miss your favorite class just to kill me? Oh my, I'm flattered.' By now settled in his regular seat, Gohan began to power up.

'I'm serious, Piccolo. I can ask to go to the restroom, turn Super Saiyajin 2, go beat you up, and come back in class before this one ends. I've missed most of it anyway, because you wouldn't shut the hell up! Now go away, damn it! I don't need this, especially right now!'

'Ah, all right, all right. It's getting old, anyway. See ya around, kid."

'You're the one getting old, you sick, egg-spitting alien.' Gohan mentally swore again. Good thing his mother would never know of her not so innocent boy's current train of thought.

That was when he heard a soft voice whisper to him, trying to get his attention; fresh, sweet minty breath tickled his sensitive nostrils due to the proximity. Then his heart stopped completely, finally becoming aware that Videl had switched places with Erasa.

"Hey, Gohan, is everything alright? You look really upset," she asked him.

By now his face had heated up completely, and his heart was racing and pounding against his chest so hard he could actually hear the fast and irregular pulses through his ears. He tried to say something, but found his breath caught in his throat and he couldn't even articulate a single word.

Then it got even worse. Videl actually got even closer to him and reached for his forehead. As he stared at her in mute fascination, heart still pounding hard and face hotter than ever, he could hardly believe what has happened to him. First he got his very first kiss from the girl of his dreams, and now she was feeling for his temperature on his forehead, looking really worried about him.

Finally getting his voice back, Gohan was glad and smiling as he heard his vocal cords working at last.

"I'm fine Videl, there's no need to worry, really."

She didn't look all that convinced, then the teacher asked from down there what was going on. And before Gohan could speak up to answer that everything was fine, Videl beat him to it.

"I think Gohan's got a fever, sir, but it's hard to tell without a thermometer. May I accompany him to the nurse, Mr. Hobbs?"

"I'm fine!" Gohan suddenly blurted out. He said this so abruptly and loudly that everybody in the classroom was staring at him now. Even those who were trying to get some Monday morning sleep on their desks looked up to stare at him, too.

"I mean…" Gohan tried again while clearing his throat, trying not to show his embarrassment and nervousness. He didn't need to get any more red-faced. "I don't feel sick or anything, I guess it's just the hot weather today, hehehehe…"

'Please, anyone watching over me... Dad, if you can hear me, make them believe me… I really, really don't want to explain the real reason that got me so hot in the face,' Gohan prayed again, scratching the back of his head. He also hoped of no more mind invasions by Piccolo because of his prayer. Kami really shouldn't have fused back with Piccolo, now he's still got the powers of an Earth Guardian, but his evil nature isn't entirely gone either.

"Hmm…" Mr. Hobbs had his brows furrowed as he looked at Gohan's still crimson face. "I don't think getting your temperature checked will hurt. Yes, Videl, you may take him to the nurse."

"But I'm really feeling fine, sir!" Gohan insisted again. Now he panicked at the thought of being alone with Videl. At least in class he didn't need to worry about how to act with the girl who kissed him in the corridors, right before this very class! So he went on, more calmly this time.

"I'm just feeling a little hot, there's really no need to worry. I'm not ill and I don't have a fever. Besides, I don't want to miss more of this class either. Could we just move on and get back to the lesson, please?"

"Gohan, your face is burning. You need to get your temperature checked." This time it was Videl, and her voice sounded serious and concerned. The teenage boy felt his insides melt completely when he looked back at her. She looked truly and genuinely worried about him. Of course, Videl would get worried about anyone if they were sick, it was just her nature to wantto help people around her. But her eyes... those beautiful, big blue eyes that he could gaze into for hours on end, and never get tired of admiring just how gorgeous and loving her blue orbs actually were… Right then and now, they were showing so much more than just concern and worry, he couldn't even begin to describe all the emotions he was seeing in them now.

'Does Videl actually like me? She's not the kind of girl to show much affection in public, let alone kiss a guy… Could it be that… she's feeling the same way…?'

"Now come on, Gohan," she said while getting out of her chair. "Let's go to the nurse and see if it's really just the day's weather."

She was now holding her hand out to him and smiling gently. Seeing her like this, he just lost his voice and was breathless all over again. Unable to think either, Gohan just took her hand and stood up, letting himself be dragged out of the classroom by the girl he was deeply in love with. A girl that, up until a few moments ago, he always thought he could never have.

'Could it be that she's really feeling the same way for me as I do for her?' wondered the young man as he stared after her: the beautiful, stubborn and brave crime fighter was still holding his hand and dragging him to the nurse's.

"Videl, wait."

She stopped walking and looked back at him. Gohan swallowed hard; it was hard to stay focused when she faced him like that. That girl really didn't need to be as strong as him to get him down to his knees: one look from her and he already felt so weak, he wondered how long it will take before he could no longer stand at all. Pulling himself back together, the boy took several deep breaths in order to calm his fragile nerves.

"Gohan, I think you're really sick. Look at you, you're having trouble to breathe now!"

He suddenly started chuckling. Then, it turned into a real, loud, hearty laugh and he was actually clutching at his sides, having let go of Videl's hand. His cheeks were still flushed, and he didn't look like he would be stopping laughing so hard anytime soon.

Videl blinked. What on earth was going on with Gohan today? He was even more weird than usual! It wasn't all because she kissed him before class, was it…?

"Wha… What's going on, Gohan? How can you be laughing like that, all of sudden?"

He calmed down enough to answer her, still chuckling and giggling like a little boy.

"If I'm sick, then it's all because of you."

While Videl tried to understand what Gohan meant by that, the young man in question managed to calm his laughing fit completely and moved closer to her, a toothy grin still present and lighting up his whole face. Now that he was so close, the girl actually had to raise her head to still be looking at his smiling face. As she opened her mouth to question him again, she was suddenly speechless when he placed his large hand on the right side of her face, his thumb stoking her cheek as he now gazed lovingly into her eyes.

Videl swallowed hard. He was so handsome and adorable at the same time, she was having trouble thinking at all. She could feel her heart soaring and her throat was suddenly so dry, she found herself unable to speak up and voice the billion questions that were currently rushing throughout her mind. And when she became aware of the burning feeling on her face, she suddenly realized why, exactly, Gohan's face felt so hot when she touched his forehead, back in class.

"I don't think you realize just how much you affect me, when you so much as look at me. You truly are gorgeous, Videl, and your eyes… they are simply the most beautiful thing I've ever seen in my life."

Videl's lips parted slightly as Gohan's hand moved to her neck and his face got closer and closer to hers, feeling her heart miss a beat as she thought that he was going to kiss her.

But her hopes of a second kiss with that handsome young man disappeared completely when he simply touched his forehead against her own, eyes closed tightly, his cool breath tickling her cheeks. Then, she felt him place his other hand gently on the small of her back, while he was suddenly breathing a bit harder.

"I… I don't know how you feel about me but I… I really need to get it out of my chest now, or else I'll never find the courage to say it again."

He swallowed, and Videl could feel him trembling slightly. If she weren't frozen on the spot by his sudden closeness and gentle touch, the girl would be kissing him herself now and tell him how much she loved and adored him. 'Gosh, I just want to kiss him so badly right now…'

"I love you, Videl." His fingers played with the strands of hair at her neck, the thought of unlocking her pigtails to actually run his hand through her locks of dark, slightly curly hair crossed his mind, distracting him somewhat. But truthfully, he felt like an idiot. How foolish of him to tell her this. He read it on novels or saw it in movies or TV shows and such: when a boy tells a girl those famous three words, and even if they were already dating for some time, the girl always rejects the boy.

And here he was, doing that very mistake himself, and probably destroying the last remnants of a chance he'd ever have with Videl. If he had any at all to begin with, that is.

'Stupid, stupid, stupid! She's probably scared to death right now. I should probably let go of her now… I really wonder what came over me to hold her like that… But it feels so nice… and she's probably going to push me off anyway; might as well make the most of it while I still can. It's not like it's ever going to happen again anyway. Haa… I feel like such a fool; why did I have to go and open my big mouth? Now she'll never want to do anything with me again and will stay as far away from me as she can. Like I could blame her…'

Although his eyes were still tightly closed, Gohan's senses were still very much alert, and he was able to feel every change in the air and each movement around him. So when Videl slowly placed one hand against his chest, he braced himself, convinced she was going to push him away from her. He even got ready to jump back a bit, so that she wouldn't hurt herself because of his inhumanly powerful body.

But instead of the strong push he expected to feel, her hand moved slowly up, giving him chills all over his body, then stopped at his cheek, her touch so tender and gentle that he stopped breathing all together for some time. Still not daring to open his eyes, Gohan simply waited Videl's next action.

She giggled. Videl, the proud tomboy and crime fighter, was actually giggling like a schoolgirl. If he weren't feeling so petrified right then, he would've probably opened up his eyes, just so he could see what she looked like when giggling. He pictured it in his mind nonetheless; it wasn't like it was the first time he did so anyway. Relaxing slightly, Gohan relished in the agreeable sound. It was such a beautiful music to his ears…

And then she spoke, her tone so light hearted and loving, he'd never heard her talk that way since their first meeting.

"Quit worrying so much, Gohan," she told him as she began to play with his spiky and surprisingly soft hair. The touch felt so nice to him that he nearly let out a moan before catching himself.

"I love you too, silly-head."

And the nice and wet feeling on his lips returned shortly after. This time he didn't think at all and kissed her back, so desperately and deeply that the love and passion of his kiss overwhelmed the girl in his arms. As they both poured all their feelings and pent up emotions into that single kiss, they just couldn't—wouldn't—stop that magical moment for the world.

"I love you… I love so much..." Gohan breathed between two smacks of lips. His lungs were screaming for air, but he couldn't care less. He wasn't planning on breaking the kiss anytime soon.

But when he felt that Videl was getting too breathless herself, he came up with a better solution. He moved his lips to her chin and down until he reached her neck, planting hungry kisses on her soft skin all the way down. That was when he heard the most arousing sound that ever existed: Videl's moans.

"Ahh… Gohan… ah… shit, where did you learn to do that stu—ahhh… mmmhh… Go… Gohan…"

Both of her hands were on top of his head and her fingers were clutched tightly on his black locks, her neck arched back to give him an easier access. She bit down hard on her lips to stop herself from moaning too loudly, her eyes tightly shut, and her whole body felt like it was on fire.

She heard him chuckle against her skin, then felt his lips move to her shoulder as his hand slid her white shirt off to the side slightly. She couldn't hold it anymore and let out a moan again, before forcing his face off her shoulder and to her lips once more, kissing him hard and deep while slamming him against the lockers around them. He wrapped his arms around her, embracing her tighter against him, while she kept her hands clutched in his thick locks of spikes.

And then, the worst thing that could ever happen in that kind of situation happened, and they both felt like they were just thrown into the coldest, most freezing shower ever.

That would've probably been better than what actually interrupted their boiling teenage hormones in action…

"Kami, Satan Videl and Son Gohan are at it again! Hey, guys, come over there, you've got to see this! They're nearly doing it in here! This is too good: that nurse thing was just an excuse to get out of class and make out out here, bwahahahaha!"

Talk about ruining the mood…


"This is so embarrassing…"

Videl felt her face burn so much, it felt like it was about to explode. Gohan wasn't in much of a better state himself: sitting in a chair across from her, he was pulling at his hair with both hands as he waited for his doom, also known as his own mother and Videl's father in the same office as the principal, talking about missing classes and kissing in the middle of the corridors.

"She's going to kill me… Pound my head with that freaking frying pan of hers until I break down and die… Then bring me back and pound my head over and over again... I wish Dad had taught me his Instant Transmission technique, so I could join him up there for the time being… Bah, I'm going to see him when I die, anyway..."

As Videl watched him mutter nonsense under his breath, she bit down her lip to stop herself from bursting out laughing. He was just so cute and funny right then, she just wanted to hug him and cuddle him and kiss him and…

Whoops, there they come again. Damn hormones, they wouldn't be in that predicament if it weren't for those freaking teenage hormones!

Then, Videl blushed bright crimson when she thought back at what happened in that corridor. Just the memory of it made her feel like her blood was on fire, her whole body felt too hot, and little did she know, her power level went so high up that it made Gohan look up at her. As their eyes met, the exact same thought crossed their mind. More instinctively than anything else, the young man got out of his chair and went to sit next to this gorgeous girl. She watched his every move and when he sat down next to her, she closed her eyes, leaning on his soft hand as he stroked her cheek.

"I wonder…" she whispered breathlessly, as he planted soft kisses all over her face. "Just how… you can be so soft and gentle… when you're actually… so strong and powerful…"

He chuckled, not all that surprised that she found him out; this girl was too smart to be fooled long, anyway. Pressing his lips on hers in a tender and sweet kiss, he then pulled away and moved to whisper his answer to her ear.

"Because you are so beautiful and so dear to me, and I will always treat you like a queen. With love, gentleness, devotion and respect."

His words overwhelmed her in such a way that Videl felt tears welling up under her lids, slipping slowly from her closed eyes and down her cheeks. Then she felt his strong arms wrap around her and bring her close to his chest, his face buried in her neck as he whispered those three words again.

"I love you too, Gohan," she said, her voice broken by the tears still flowing down her cheeks. "I love you so much, I didn't think it possible to feel so much love for someone until I met you."

Lost in their own little world, they hadn't even heard the door of the principal's office open a short time ago, nor did they notice the three adults coming out of said office. Dumbstruck by the very moving and heartfelt scene showing before their eyes, Chichi nearly fainted when she heard what this young teenage girl just told her eldest son. As for Hercule, he was tearing up yet happy that his little girl had found her one true love, even though he still thought she was too young. And the principal, Mrs. Chealsaw, she completely forgot why she had decided to punish those two just moments ago. They were young and in love, and both had always had very good grades and the best of behavior. Besides, teenage hormones couldn't be easy to control when having such strong feelings for one another.

When Chichi spoke up, though, the embracing pair turned to look at the three, and the nervousness and fear came back at them full force. Videl was about to pull away from Gohan, but he kept her close against him, determined to stay by her side to the very end. Besides, he needed her too much right now, he just couldn't let her go.

What his mother said, however, left him and the girl in his arms completely dumbstruck.

"Principal Chealsaw… Please, forget everything I just said in your office. Gohan is and will always be my biggest pride in this world, along with my youngest son. I don't want him to be punished for being in love, and I don't think doing so will be a good example to give our children. I was about their age when Gohan's father and I got married, and I still remember this wonderful feeling like it was yesterday."

"I agree with Mrs. Son," Hercule added. "I'm just glad my daughter is happy."

"Yes… Yes, you both are right," nodded Mrs. Chealsaw. "Gohan, Videl, you are dismissed for the rest of today's classes. Mrs. Son, Mr. Satan, I apologize for making you come here for nothing. Especially you, Mrs. Son, as you live so far away in the mountain district."

"Ah, no, it's fine," replied Chichi as she waved her hand dismissively. "I was actually in a city nearby with a friend of mine, as well as my youngest son and her own boy. She flew us in here when I got your call and they're all waiting in the town park nearby while I'm here. It's nothing, really."

"Well, I'll get going," said Hercule. "My students at the dojo need to be taught by someone after all."

"Yes, I should go, too. They're all waiting for me at the park." Then she turned to the speechless teens, looking at them all with wide eyes and mouth gaping. Smiling at the sight, she said: "You are welcome to join us, you two. It's a nice day for a family outing, and I'm sure Goten, Bulma and Trunks will be delighted to meet you, Videl. Besides, from everything Gohan's been telling me about you since he's attending school here, I would really like to get to know you better, too."

"Yes, good idea," Hercule said suddenly. "Go have fun, Videl. You don't have days off very often after all, what with helping out the police all the time while keeping good grades. Go with them, you deserve a nice day out. And I'll call the police chief and tell him to leave you alone for today."

"Why don't you come and join us, too, Mr. Satan?" Chichi then proposed the man, shocking the two paralyzed teens even more. "I'm sure you wouldn't mind a day off as well, would you? You could teach your students at the town park, and maybe my boys can help them practice, too. We've all been into martial arts for quite long, and I've taught Goten, my youngest, the basics of fighting, as my late husband has been gone before Goten was born."

"Ah, what a great idea! I thought you looked familiar; wouldn't you happen to be that unknown fighter who married the former World Champion?"

"Why, yes, I am! It is such a lovely and romantic story, you have to hear about it: Goku and I actually met when we were little kids and he promised to marry me when he had to leave…"

As Chichi related the story of how she and Goku got married, Gohan and Videl exchanged looks. Silently agreeing, they suddenly got out of their seats and rushed out of the waiting room. Hands joined and laughing, they ran along the corridors of Orange Star High, away from their parents and the principal, who all had no time to register what was happening. Gohan then took a sharp turn and flew out of a random open window, holding Videl against him as he disappeared into the cloudless sky, their happy laughs fading out as they flew away together.

They were young and in love, so why should they spend their first day together with their parents and family? Nope, no way. Today, they wanted to be alone, just the two of them. And it was only their first day together of many, many more to come.

They were in love and happy. And they were to be so forever and always.

-True love never dies


And there you have it. I'm still thinking whether I should write an epilogue or not; the way the story ends looks perfect to me. Ah well, we'll see if inspiration strikes again for this fanfic. Maybe it will in another two years, who knows? Haha :P

Thanks for reading, and a big thank you to all those who have left this story a review from its very first publication. I hope you all enjoyed this second part as well, if not more. I know I did, hahaha... Drop me a word if you can, it's always nice to know what my readers think about my work ^_^

Also, special thanks to my anonymous beta-reader who did an awesome job on this! Thanks so much! =D