Well, my dear readers, it's me.
As a start, yes, I know I deleted my "Through the hole" fanfic, and I'm very sorry for doing that, believe me. But it's just that, as I considered the project on a more long-term basis, I realized it would be just too much like Dragon Ball Z, only with Bardock in it. Besides, I wasn't feeling all that motivated to write it. So, I erased it.
I'm back now, with another attempt at a Dragon Ball Z fanfic. This time, we have another Saiyan as well here... Goku's big brother, Raditz.
I have a slight impression this concept was tried somewhere by some author... I can't remember exactly who did it, nor the fanfic in question... and if the author ever comes across this, I'm sorry. All that I can say is that I'll try to make this fanfic as original as possible.
And it's going to start right now. So, without further ado, here it is.
Chapter 1 – An inoportune fall
Goku ran along the Snake Way at the highest speed he was able to reach, determined to get to the end as quickly as he could. He didn't know for how long he had been running, nor how big was the distance he still had to cover before he got to the end, but he did know what was waiting for him: training from a gifted martial arts master who went by the name of King Kai. Goku knew he had to get the most out of that training, for his opponents would be stronger than the strongest person Goku had known while he had lived.
Raditz. Goku thought, trying to ignore the stab of pain on his heart. My brother. And I died because of him.
Under different circumstances, perhaps Goku would be happy to say that sentence, but now, such a thought only brought him sadness, and perhaps rage. After all, his brother Raditz was nothing like the kind of brother Goku had ever wanted to have. The only thing he had ever been during the short time they'd met was a monster. The only thing comparable to the shock of having such a brother was the shock of being part of such a race.
Of being a Saiyan.
For many years, Goku had believed he was just a normal person. But those same years had been spent in a place called Mount Paozu, without seeing anyone else than his grandfather. As a result of that, his notion of normal had always been off, that much he was forced to confess. At least after he'd spent some time out of Paozu and more of the outside world and its inhabitants had slowly come to be known by him. One of the things that had confused him was that no one else had a tail. Confusing as it was, though, Goku had learned to let it go, and as such, when Kami had decided to remove it, he'd scarcely given it a second thought.
But now that he knew the furry, monkey-like tail he no longer possessed was the trademark of a barbaric race that slaughtered innocents by millions, he was glad he didn't have it, although it had come in handy a time or another in the past.
How ironic. Goku allowed himself to think for a moment, remembering what Raditz had told him about the Saiyans. They wiped out planets for a living, but they were all wiped out when their planet was destroyed.
No. Not all of them. Two of them were still alive, and right before his death, Raditz had told him they were heading for Earth. The worst part of it, though, was that they were much stronger than Raditz. And Raditz had already been about three times than Goku when the two fought.
Shut up! Goku shouted at his own mind. Why are you thinking so much about Raditz? He may be your brother, but he's a monster! He doesn't deserve another thought from you! So, get over it, and run faster!
Deserving of another thought or not, Goku had to admit he was giving too much of a thought to that monster who called himself his brother. Or Kakarot's brother. That had been his Saiyan name, until he forgot it when he hit his head. And he was sure glad he had. He sure didn't want to have become a monster.
But one thing a tiny part of him wanted was that, someway, his brother hadn't been such a monster, and instead had been more… of a brother. Goku didn't know anyone who had a brother, so he couldn't compare, but one thing he'd always known was that family was to be there for you if you needed them, and to help you through your troubles. And Raditz…
Stop it! Goku again ordered his mind. Just what do you think you're doing? Hoping for something that can't happen is the most pointless thing ever! For now, the only thing you can hope for is trying to reach King Kai and get a decent training before the other two Saiyans get to Earth!
With that, his mind finally seemed to quiet the thoughts about Raditz. Happy that such a thing had happened, Goku allowed himself to keep running along Snake Way.
Below Snake Way, in one of the deepest spots of Hell, Raditz punched and kicked a rock in his path over and over again, imagining it was his brother Kakarot he was punching instead of a chunk of mineral.
It could be worse, Raditz recalled. Although he was dead, and in Hell, he had somehow gotten to keep his body, something no one else Raditz had seen managed. So far, he'd only seen white clouds who claimed to be souls. But having his body did little good to him. Raditz would only find his body useful if he could use it to pound his brother to dust.
In fact, his brother would be more sensitive to his hits than the rock he was currently pounding. Raditz had been hitting this rock with all his strength ever since he'd gotten to Hell, and hadn't even made a scratch on it. Punching this rock had the objective of draining out all the anger and hatred he felt toward his brother. But instead, with every punch he landed on the rock, the magnitude of his feelings seemed to increase. If before his death Raditz had hated Kakarot, now Raditz just… well, there simply was no word strong enough to describe the depth of his feelings for Kakarot. Negative feelings, but deep nevertheless. They were what had gotten him to Hell. And although Raditz had always known, deep down, that this would sooner or later be his destination, he wouldn't really mind that much – if he hadn't been killed by his brother. True, Kakarot had died as well, but even so, he had managed to defeat Raditz in the most painful way ever. And worse, he'd be resurrected by those Dragon Balls the green man had spoken about. Being the weakest of his companions, Raditz was more used to be defeated than most other Saiyans – but none of his defeats had been as painful as his last one.
Raditz reminded himself that this had happened to him because he had been stupid – and coward. What he should have done was to look for his brother, and then torture him in the most agonizing way he could think of, before finally erasing his face off the map. But no, Vegeta and Nappa, his two comrades, had told him they wanted him to get Kakarot, so Kakarot would help them conquering that planet they'd found, and if for some reason it was a wasted chance, then he should just erase Kakarot of the map. Because Vegeta and Nappa had been listening through the scouter, all his fight with the green man and Kakarot had been like a well rehearsed theatre play. If not for that damned scouter, Raditz would have gotten his real feelings out. But Saiyans were not meant to have feelings of any kind. If Vegeta and Nappa had known of all the grudges Raditz held, they'd probably kill him without a second thought. Everything he'd done since arriving to Earth had been more of an attempt at saving his life than anything else.
Worse, his efforts had been wasted ones. Now he was down here for eternity. Although he'd said Vegeta and Nappa would resurrect him with the Dragon Balls, that sentence had come out more as the product of a drained brain than of a real hope. And it made no difference to him, for Raditz didn't want to be resurrected. The only thing he wanted now was to cause his brother Kakarot the same pain Kakarot had caused him.
And that moment would come, even if Raditz had to wait for the rest of eternity.
As Goku kept running, he had the impression he could see some sort of vehicle moving along Snake Way. It appeared to be some sort of sanitation vehicle, as Goku could see a faint trail of foam and water the vehicle left on its path.
Goku ran up to the vehicle's side. Inside it, there was some sort of ogre-looking guy, similar to the one who'd taken him to the beginning of Snake Way.
"Good morning, sir!" Goku said to the ogre inside the vehicle. "What are you doing here?"
For the briefest of moments, the ogre looked confused, but then, he answered as if it was the most obvious thing ever,
"What an idiot question! I'm in charge of the maintenance of the road, can't you see it? And you, what are you doing here?"
"I'm going to King Kai's place." Goku answered. "Is it far from here?"
"WHAT?" the ogre shouted. "You're going to King Kai's place? Well, young man, one can't say you haven't got nerve!"
"Is it far yet?" Goku asked.
"Oh, you have barely started, poor friend!" the ogre said. "I guess so far you've only made a quarter of the way!"
"WHAT?" Goku shouted back. "Only a quarter of the way? No, it can't be!"
Even after all the efforts I've been through? Goku asked mentally. He couldn't have a precise idea about the time he'd spent running so far, but he'd say it had been at least a month and a half. Apparently, it would take him long indeed to get to the end… and to King Kai.
And worse, it looked like he would need to take a break, because his last remnants of strength were already out. Unable to give another step, Goku fell on his bottom, trying to use his hands to sit up instead of falling completely.
The driver stopped his vehicle, and put his head out.
"What is it?" he asked. "Is there anything wrong?"
"No, no, I'm alright." said Goku. "I only need to rest a little bit."
"If you say so…" the driver said, before getting his head back into the vehicle.
But, before carrying on, he stuck his head out again, and called, "Hey, I can take you with me while you rest! Are you interested?"
A small burst of energy coming across him, Goku ran to the vehicle and jumped onto the rear area.
"Thank you very much, sir!" Goku shouted.
"You're very welcome!" replied the ogre.
Goku lied down right as the ogre started the engine of the sanitation vehicle, every muscle of his body aching with tiredness. For a moment, he contemplated the caramel-coloured clouds above him, but sleep fell down on him in less than a minute.
And so tired he was, that he didn't notice when the sanitation vehicle shuddered as it took a turn – and threw him off Snake Way.
Still boiling with anger even after all the time he had spent pounding on that rock, Raditz growled in rage, his eyes on fire with madness and hatred. Yet another array of punches, and still, he could see no mark.
Delivering another punch on the rock, Raditz jumped away of it, and lifted both of his hands, preparing a Double Sunday, one of his signature techniques. As the energy gathered in his hands, Raditz kept his eyes locked on the stone he'd used as target, imagining it was his brother Kakarot that he was about to blast into oblivion.
Kakarot… Raditz thought, his fury fuelling the energy going onto his hands. I swear to you, the second you appear in front of me, I'm going to rip you to pieces so tiny they won't be distinguishable!
As he continued to gather strength, Raditz briefly thought about the real first time on which he had seen Kakarot. At that time, he'd been delighted at the idea of having a little brother. It had meant to finally have a friend, to finally have someone who would look up to him, instead of bullying him like most other Saiyans his age had done.
But that had been a short lasting hope. Even before his birth, Kakarot had been starting to take the two people Raditz cared the most about away from him. And when Kakarot had been born, both those people had been gone forever, although in different ways.
For the briefest of moments, the thought that Kakarot hadn't done that on purpose came across Raditz's mind. After all, Kakarot had been a newborn baby, barely aware of those around him. The only things Raditz had seen him doing – until meeting him as an adult – had been drooling and crying. But that didn't make the final result of what Kakarot had done less painful for him. And intentionally or not, Kakarot had done it.
And if I ever get to see him, he will pay for that. Raditz thought, before trying to vent his feelings through the strongest Double Sunday he had ever created.
But, right before he fired, something in the sky caught his attention.
It appeared like something was falling off from those yellow clouds. Raditz had never known what was above those clouds, and although he had once tried to fly up there, those things were harder than concrete, and he'd never been able to break through them. But apparently, there was something above them, otherwise, nothing would be falling off.
Raditz focused his sight, and realized that thing had a vaguely familiar shape. And a familiar colour. And a familiar size. And it was…
"Kakarot!" Raditz gasped out.
For a moment, Raditz just stood there, so shocked that he forgot to keep all the energy he had gathered. It seemed impossible that such a thing would happen, that Kakarot would literally be falling from the sky at this moment.
But it only lasted a moment. Immediately after, the feelings that Raditz had been trying to vent on the rock rushed through him with the power of a hurricane. The energy he had let go of returned to his hands at lightning speed. But Raditz didn't even focus, his eyes wild like those of a crazed beast, like he was when turned into a Great Ape.
"KAKAROOOOOOOT!" he roared, before sending out the most intense energy blast he had ever produced.
Goku woke up from his sleep with a start as a scream reached his ears. He realized that he was no longer asleep on the sanitation vehicle, but instead he was falling through the air. Already somewhat rested, he used his energy to stop his fall. As soon as he knew he was floating in mid-air, he tried to get some bearings of his surroundings, but before he could orient himself, all of his senses were overpowered by the sight of an energy blast heading straight at him.
"Whoa!" Goku shouted, right as he used all the energy he could to dodge the blast.
He managed to dodge it, although barely, but he still felt the energy wave's power on his skin. Although he couldn't be killed, he dreaded to think what would have happened if the blast had hit him.
Then, before he could recover from the scare, the scream came again.
Goku froze again. He remembered that voice. It was the voice of his brother, Raditz. And he was angry. Beyond angry, in fact. From his tone, he seemed bent on murder, literally.
Goku heard a distant explosion, which must have been his brother Raditz taking off, and he could already feel Raditz's energy, approaching him with the speed and precision of a missile.
Damn! Goku thought. Where do I hide? Where do I hide?
Looking up, Goku saw the layer of caramel-coloured clouds, floating above him. He realized he should have fallen off Snake Way, but that wasn't important at the time. The most important at the time was to get Raditz to lose track of him, and continue his journey to King Kai's planet.
In the clouds, Goku realized. His best chance was to hide in the middle of those clouds.
Hoping to hide in the clouds before Raditz caught him, Goku flew as fast as he could toward his only hope. Raditz was gaining ground on him fast, but, thank God, it wasn't fast enough. Goku would get to the clouds before Raditz caught him.
Almost there… Goku thought over and over as he kept his eyes focused on the protective layer of clouds. Almost there…
Raditz was close, but the clouds were much closer. And once Goku got there, he just had to be really quiet.
Almost there… almost there…
As soon as the top of Goku's head touched the clouds, he felt like he'd just crashed with a whale of steel. The pain burst through his skull, and whatever awareness he had of the world around him vanished. Disoriented like he had never been, Goku repeatedly shook his head in an effort to get his bearings back. Through the middle of the shaking, he recalled something that the ogre who took him to the beginning of Snake Way had said, something about being impossible to come back once you fell off. He had fallen off. So, he was down here forever. He'd wasted his only chance to get to King Kai and be trained by him. Even if he was resurrected, defeating the Saiyans would be impossible.
Suddenly, a feeling broke through the throbbing in his head. The feeling of a hand engulfing his right ankle.
Looking down with tears in his eyes, Goku saw that Raditz had caught up with him. In fact, Raditz had caught him.
The throbbing in his head slowly receding, the picture of Raditz became ever clearer in Goku's eyes. But as soon as it became clear enough, Goku wished his sight was still blurry from the pain.
For Raditz, holding his ankle in that death grip, looked ever more terrible than Goku had ever seen him looking. Back on Earth, Raditz had looked emotionless and cold-hearted for all the time Goku had met him. The only time where Goku had seen any emotion at all coming from his older brother had been when Raditz had been stomping on his ribs. But the only emotion he had there was genuine hatred. Raditz hated him.
But now, as Raditz was about to drag him to the depths of hell, Goku realized the hatred he had seen on his big brother's face while he was being stomped to near-death was nothing, compared to the hatred Raditz held in his eyes now. Mixed with that absolutely diabolic smile, it was the most terrible thing Goku had ever seen.
"Well, well, Kakarot…" Raditz whispered softly. "May I ask where you were going?"
Goku didn't answer. His mind was racing in an effort to find a way out of the big trouble he'd gotten himself in.
"It's such a pity you can't stay around…" Raditz kept whispering. "After all, I have a few matters I need to settle with you. Did you know that?"
"Do you mean since you've died, or are those matters older?" Goku tried to repress his voice from shaking as he made the question.
He didn't even know why he'd asked that. The main goal was distracting Raditz while he thought about how to get away from this big mess, but he could have done something else.
"They're older, Kakarot." Raditz whispered. "Much older."
Goku rubbed the back of his head. "Well, I'm sorry I can't stick around to help you then…" he whispered, trying to crack a joke in an effort to calm down. "But I also got my matters to solve…" struck by a sudden idea, he added in a shout, "AND THEY'RE MORE IMPORTANT!"
Then, he fired a one handed Kamehameha toward Raditz's face. Raditz let him go, taking his hands to his eyes, and Goku took the time to fly lower, hoping to hide in some deep spot of Hell until he managed to find a way out. Because there had to be one.
But Goku never got to hide. After a short-lasting feeling of freedom and hope, Goku sensed an energy wave coming toward him. He tried to dodge it the best he could, but the blast hit him head on. He knew without looking that he'd been hit by one of Raditz's "presents", equal to the one Raditz had given him after the Kamehameha had failed. However, this "present" had been much more powerful.
Goku fell down like a duck that had been shot, but, unlike a duck, he was stopped shortly after his fall… by what seemed to be the grip of a huge vice.
His sight was too dim for him to have a good view, but it was more than obvious for him that Raditz had been the one catching him.
"You have more important matters, huh?" Raditz whispered in the same soft, scary tone.
Weakened by the power of such a strong hit, Goku could do nothing but shiver in fear.
His sight slightly clearer by now, he saw Raditz's look shifting from his sinister smile to a snarl, a snarl as full of hatred as his previous look.
"Unfortunately, it seems you're just going to have to wait before going to solve them." Raditz whispered, his voice appearing choked. Then, Raditz shouted, "BECAUSE I'VE ALREADY BEEN WAITING FOR TOO LONG!"
Even before Goku could totally take in the hatred in Raditz's voice, Raditz flew head down toward Hell at top speed, dragging Goku with him. Goku struggled as much as he could, but nothing came out of his efforts, other than some feeble movements.
Eventually, Goku felt that Raditz let go of him and stopped… but Goku himself kept pummelling down toward the ground. Again, he focused every bit of his brain in soothing the impact in every way he could imagine… to no avail.
He dove into the hard floor head down. And then, pain like he'd never felt erupted all over his body.
Raditz landed next to his brother, watching Kakarot's crumpled form on the stone floor. That floor was hard indeed – although Kakarot had fallen on it at a speed higher than Raditz had ever flown at, it barely had a mark. But Kakarot himself was totally broken. He still twitched, but twitching appeared to be all he could do, other than moaning.
Walking over to Kakarot, Raditz grabbed the collar of his brother's shirt and lifted him to eye-level. He wanted to be able to look into Kakarot's eyes as he spent the rest of eternity burning him with an energy blast, relishing in the satisfaction such an act would bring to him.
I may be in Hell, but Kakarot's arrival has just made it a paradise! Raditz thought, even as he lifted his left hand to create another 'Begone'.
But, before he started gathering the energy, he realized something was wrong. Kakarot was helpless in his grasp, beaten as ever, and Raditz was able to deliver him a punishment that would last the rest of eternity… and yet, no satisfaction came onto his heart. Considering this had been the moment Raditz had been awaiting the most ever since he'd arrived to Hell, that was odd. Frightening, almost.
For years, Raditz had relished in slaughter, the fear emanating from those he burned away with his energy being the best reward for his assignments. And Kakarot… Kakarot had been the one making Raditz suffer the most, even more than Vegeta. Raditz had dreamt about getting back to Kakarot about every time he slept.
But if that was the case, why wasn't he getting any satisfaction from his brother's pain?
Although all of his body was in more pain than Goku had ever felt, he forced himself to open his eyes. Even the simple gestures of moving his eyelids and moaning seemed to cause him the deepest agony.
But, through his tears and through the blood in his eyes, Goku could see something different in Raditz's look. For the first time, the hatred had disappeared from his eyes, and although his teeth were still bared, Raditz's look was now doubtful. It almost seemed like he was wondering why he was doing this.
Goku couldn't help but making the same question mentally. At least, thinking didn't cause him any pain.
But making the question mentally wasn't enough. Goku had to speak it. He had to find out the answer to that question.
Although speaking appeared to be an insufferable torture, Goku asked, "Raditz… why are you doing this?"
The hatred returning to his eyes in a flash, Raditz snarled, "Shut up!" and threw him down. Goku felt his back exploding in pain as he hit the floor. He'd shout, but his throat appeared to have gone too tight for that.
"Raditz… brother…" Goku managed to whisper.
Raditz stomped on his chest.
"Silence!" he shouted. "You're not my brother, Kakarot! You never were my brother! A brother doesn't cause all the pain you've caused me!"
Through the fog of pain enveloping his brain, Goku could feel confusion coming over him.
"The pain I've caused you?" Goku insisted, trying to ignore the pain for long enough to speak. "But… what sort of pain did I cause you?"
"Oh, nothing." Raditz spat. "You just caused everyone who I cared about and who cared about me to go away!"
This was making less and less sense to Goku. He didn't remember causing his brother any pain.
But that was expected. After all, he'd hit his head when he was a baby, and therefore had forgotten everything that had happened to him before that.
The only thing he knew was that, whatever pain he had caused Raditz… he didn't mean it.
But this time he was in too much pain to say another word.
In the meantime, Raditz looked at him again. The hatred in his eyes was as intense as ever, but an equally strong sadness was mixed there, as he recalled whatever Goku had done to him.
"All of them left." he repeated. "Because of you. And now… you're going to pay."
With that, Raditz lifted his left arm, and started gathering energy on the palm of his hand. Goku could see a white ball of energy forming there. It was meant for him, Goku was sure of that. Although he was already dead, it was far from pleasant to imagine what could happen to him. The notion of dying again was stupid… but somehow, the idea scared him.
But through his fear, there was also a tiny bit of pity. Although Goku didn't know what sort of pain he'd caused his big brother, there was one thing he knew: it had been a strong one. And if there was anything he could do to change that, Goku swore he'd do it.
Unfortunately, there was nothing he could do, neither to make up to his brother, nor to save himself.
So... I hope you all like this new fanfic, my dear readers. But in order to let me know, please, leave me a review.