In the Future…

Chapter One: Revenge

A blindingly bright light filled the dark, cloudy sky, temporarily illuminating all around it.  With it appeared the time capsule that had saved so many lives in the past, had helped overcome the deadliest of enemies and conquerors.  It sat, motionless, for a few seconds as the loud, yet gentle humming of its engines calmly quieted down to nothing.  The clear glass hatch on the top of the unit unlocked with a sudden ch-ch and a noticeable shock.  The scuffed up skylight started to open, quickly at first, and then slower until it was possible to clearly see from the inside the dark storm clouds looming ahead.  Then, a traveler departed from his trusted companion that took him through time, a traveler who had seen both the fearful, disastrous future and the unsuspecting past.  Trunks had come home.

The Capsule Corporation premises of Trunks' timeline looked nothing like the beautiful one in the past.  This one had seen much more violence and destruction, and was pretty roughed up.  He noticed that everything on the planet was no longer as beautiful as it was in Goku's timeline.  Almost every city, town, village, and anything else signifying civilization lay in ruins, most of its occupants killed by two deadly terrorists.  The people who had managed evade this murdering duo for this long knew that death was still on the way.  These were the hardest times that Earth has ever known, and it looked like its inhabitants would lose this war if something didn't change in their favor.

Trunks took a few steps away from his time machine, looking around the area with disbelief.  He was shocked to see what he saw in front of him, all around him.  The Capsule Corporation premises looked nothing like it had when he'd left for the timeline of the past.  Now, everything lay in ruins!  Every single building, even the largest one, had been reduced to nothing but ruble!  As he spun about, trying to see everything at once, he realized that the labs and simulation rooms had all been totaled!  What was left of the once beautiful landscape was now in flames, and glass had been blown all over the place!

"The Androids!" Trunks thought.  "They must have been here while I was away!  Look what they did to this place!  It's completely destroyed!"  He pictured in his mind what his home had looked like before he'd gone to the past.  It was nowhere near as lively as in Goku's world, but it was at least intact.  The buildings had been dome shaped, with long curved windows that traveled across the sides.  There had been holes in some of the walls, and debris had been scattered about.  He remembered sitting in the time machine, preparing to launch himself through time.  He had been looking around then, too, observing all that the Androids had done.  Then, he was waving good-bye to Bulma, as he was just about to leave–Bulma!

"Mom!" he realized.  "Oh no!  Look at this place; there's no way she could've survived it!  But she can't be gone!  She just can't be!"  He ran to one of the piles of debris and started digging, looking for any sign of her.  He quickly lost heart, though, and slumped to his knees.  He sat for a few seconds in silence.  "Mom," he whispered to himself.  A single tear fell from his eye, though he was trying not to cry.

"The shelter!" he exclaimed suddenly.  "She's probably in the underground shelter we made!  There's no way the Androids could have known about it!"  With renewed motivation, Trunks sprang to his feet and turned toward the largest pile of rubble.  "I'm pretty sure we built the shelter under the main building," he recalled.  Then, he thought of something and gasped.  "Wait," he said to himself, beginning to panic.  "What if she's not in the shelter?  Maybe she didn't realize that Androids had come until it was too late.  What if she didn't make it?"  With this in mind, he hurried toward the site where the shelter was and threw a small energy blast at the debris to clear the area.

Once the site was free of rubble, Trunks could easily see the entrance to the underground room they had built.  The door was closed, though he wasn't sure if it was locked.  Nonetheless, this looked like a sign that Bulma would be inside, safe and sound.  He reached the steel door and quickly examined it.  "Oh no, it's unlocked!" he thought.  He yanked it open and ran to the end of the narrow hallway, where he came to a ladder that went further underground.  He let himself fall lightly to the bottom, and he found himself in the protected room, completely intact.  But the room was empty!  He ran back to the entrance and checked the computer's files, but it said that nobody had been in there for the past seven months, when they first built the shelter!

"She didn't make it.  Mom, no…" he thought.  "NOOO!!!!!" he shouted at no one.  "How could they do this?!  They had no right!  Nagh!"  He punched the wall, leaving a deep dent.  He calmed down and continued, "The had no reason to kill you, Mom.  How could you let them?  How could I let them?  But I'll be strong for you, Mom.  I'll avenge your death; I'll get them back!  You have my word, they are going to suffer just like everyone on this planet already has!  I'll make them feel the pain, the sorrow, the fear that they've given us."

Trunks turned and looked out the door, and saw that a storm had begun.  He stepped out into the heavy rain and howling winds, and listened to the booming, echoing thunder.  He welcomed it, for it was just like what was happening in his head.  "No more running and hiding," he said.  "No longer will I allow them to run free on this Earth.  I've seen them kill so many innocent people, and they've killed so many of our friends.  But now they've gone too far.  They've killed you, Mom; they've taken you away from me.  You, the only one left who cared about me.  There's no excuse for what they've done.  Their rein of terror ends today, with them feeling the same agony that they've caused this planet."

He stood silent for a few seconds, staring into nothingness.  Then, he began to emit white sparks of energy, and he leapt up into the air.  He flew off into the storm, leaving a trail of whiteness behind him.

***

Trunks realized that he didn't quite know how he planned to make Androids 17 and 18 feel fear or misery.  He had never thought that he'd try to do that to anyone before, and decided to land somewhere and think for a few minutes to formulate a plan.  He found an area in the middle of a large forest that was still untouched by the Androids, and decided to stop there.

"Now how do I do this?" he wondered aloud.  "It's not like they have a home I could destroy, and even if they did, it wouldn't hurt them to lose it.  And they don't have any friends I could take away…" He sighed.  "Man, being a bad guy is hard."

He thought for a few minutes, drawing up new ideas and immediately discarding them.  After all, they were two Androids, and they did live anywhere or know anyone.  It was just the two of them…

"That's it!" Trunks jumped.  "They don't have any friends, so they do everything together.  All they have is each other, so I'll just take one away.  But who?"  This was another question in itself.  They were both ruthless, or so it seemed.  "But Android 17 is obviously more reckless and violent.  Honestly, I doubt that it would bother him very long of he lost Eighteen.  So I'll do the opposite:  I'll kill Seventeen and let Android 18 live."

Trunks had his game plan, and now it was time to execute it.  However, he was having a hard time sensing where the Androids were.  "That's weird," he thought.  "Where are they?"  Then it struck him.  "Oh yeah!  The Androids aren't like Cell and Frieza.  The Androids don't have power levels, I forgot!  Oh well, there are other ways of finding them."

He levitated into the air, above the trees, and discovered that he'd landed right in the eye of the storm.  But that was among the last things on his mind right now.  He went silent, despite the thunder, and concentrated.  After a few seconds, he found what he was looking for.  He sensed lots of explosions about two miles away from where he was.

"That must be them," he told himself.  "They're always blasting buildings and killing people, and I can sense a lot of destruction going on over there."  As if on cue, strong winds began to blow in the direction of the Androids, and the storm moved on with them.  No longer in the calm center of the downpour, Trunks again sparked with white energy and flew off toward the city.

Traveling at about two-hundred-and-fifty miles per hour, it would only take Trunks about thirty seconds to reach Androids 17 and 18.  Still, it was the longest thirty seconds of his life.  As he flew over the city, leaving the raging storm behind, he saw people running for their lives in hopes of living for another two minutes.  Children and adults alike were screaming out of fear, offering up their final prayers.

"Don't worry," he thought.  "I'll save you.  I'll rid this world of the Androids once and for all."  But he wasn't going to just kill them; he was going to make them suffer.  It was their turn now.  No more waiting or planning.  No more running or hiding.  Today was the day.  The moment was now.

At last Trunks gained visual contact with deadly duo themselves.  Still in the air, he could see the smirk on Seventeen's face as the Android formed a red energy ball.  Trunks knew that this was going to make for a bigger blast than the others, and looked to see what he was aiming at.

"Oh no!" he thought, realizing that a seven-story building full of helpless people was about to be blasted into oblivion!  "There must be several hundred people in that building alone!"  Immediately, he began to fly downward as fast as he could.  Android 17, unaware of Trunks' approach, released his attack on the defenseless building.  "No!  No!"  Trunks panicked, knowing that at his current speed even he wouldn't make it in time. 

Without thinking, he turned Super Saiyan in mid-flight and his speed almost doubled!  He raced ahead of the blast and deflected it with his arm at the last second, thus saving the people in the building.  He, the Androids, and everyone in the building watched in awe as the blast traveled further and further away until it was out of sight.

Trunks then turned to face Androids 17 and 18.  The golden energy he had been emitting faded away, and his hair resumed its lavender-colored shade.  There was a silence for a few seconds, the Androids still watching the blast fly away.

Android 17 pulled himself away from the sight first, and began the small talk with a confident, "Well, well, look who it is, Eighteen."  He smirked and continued to Trunks, "Up for another rematch?"

"I'll bet you think of it as a rematch," Trunks replied coldly.  "That's all life is to you, right?  One big game?  Well—"

"If you've come to give us one of those heroic speeches," Android 18 interrupted, "then I suggest that you leave before I get irritated.  I'd hate for Seventeen to have to kill another cute face."  He tone of voice changed, and Trunks could tell that she was partially talking to Android 17 as well.

Her brother looked at her and countered, "You're still mad at me for that?  Why don't women ever forget those things?  You know, I'll never understand you, Eighteen, so I'm not even going to try."

"I didn't come here to watch you two bicker," Trunks loudly stepped in.

"Well that was rude," 18 commented.

Ignoring her, the Saiyan continued, "No longer will the people of Earth drown in the fear and pain that you've caused.  No longer will you roam free across this planet, leaving a trail of destruction and chaos as your footprints.

"I said," 18 interrupted again, "That I didn't want to hear your boring speeches."

"Oh, come on, sis," Seventeen said.  "The poems are half the fun.  And besides, he's probably put weeks into this."

"I don't care.  I'm not in the mood to listen to long dialogues.  So spare me the speech and skip to the bottom line."

"The bottom line is this:  I've come to stop your reign of terror on this planet, and that's exactly what I'm going to do."  It was obvious that they were going to object with several sarcastic remarks and a few evil laughs.  Before they could do this, though, Trunks pressed on, "I'm a lot stronger than the last time we fought, and I'm a lot stronger than you two."

With that, Trunks decided to somewhat power up, just in case he'd slightly underestimated the Androids' power.  He clenched his fists and tensed his muscles for a few seconds, causing small rocks and debris to rise off the ground.

"Ooh, I'm scared," Seventeen remarked.

Ignoring the Android, Trunks gave a loud shout, and instantly the ground began to rumble.  As his hair shot upward and golden energy enveloped his body, chunks of sidewalk and pavement broke apart and also drifted upward until they were about four feet off the ground, where they floated in place.  With one final shout, Trunks' energy aura got even more intense, and all of the airborne pieces of concrete disintegrated in a bright flash of light.  The ground shook so much that unstable buildings actually collapsed.  Finally, Trunks stopped and prepared to fight his greatest enemies.  He wasn't at his full power, but he knew that there was no way they could have been as strong as he was.

***

Unable to detect power levels, the Androids were unimpressed.  "Oh no!  What power!" Seventeen joked.  "Please, I give up!  Just don't hurt me!" he laughed.

"No," Trunks replied firmly, even though he knew Android 17 wasn't serious.  "Giving up is not an option."  A shocked look came over their faces for a second, but they quickly recovered.

Apparently, not quick enough, though, for in an instant, Trunks had landed a punch square to Android 17's face, sending him hurtling backward into a large pile of debris.

Eighteen watched as her brother struggled to recover from hit.  "Why you!"  She whirled around and shot an energy blast out of each hand.  But behold!  Trunks wasn't there!  "What the?!" she exclaimed to herself as her blasts hit part of the building her brother had been aiming at before.  By now, however, the building had been evacuated, meaning that no one was hurt when part of it broke off and collapsed.

She felt something behind her and immediately turned around.  Just as she did so, Trunks brought his knee forcefully into her gut, leaving her paralyzed for a few seconds.  Using this to his advantage, he swung his fist vehemently to the side of her face, causing her to fly back into the same pile of debris as her brother.

Speaking of whom, Android 17 had by now recovered and was ready to attack.  After waiting for his sister, the two Androids raced toward the young Super Saiyan, planning to double-team him.

Trunks foresaw this, and said, "Teamwork may have helped you kill my father, Gohan, and all my other friends, but it won't help you this time."

"We'll see about that," Seventeen smirked as he launched a punch to Trunks' face, like the Saiyan had done to him.  However, Trunks easily dodged the attack and slammed his elbow into the Android's side as he passed next to him.

Right after that, Trunks turned to see Eighteen speedily approaching him.  He did nothing in defense, though, except brace himself.  She landed a violent kick right to the side of his head, but was shocked to see that he barely flinched!  Not even his posture changed by more than two inches!  Trunks returned with his own kick to her head, sending her skyrocketing into the air.

Seventeen tried to attack him from behind with an energy blast, but he easily turned his head about three inches to the left, completely dodging the blast.  Then, he grabbed Android 17's foot and swung him around and around in circles until he finally let go, sending him flying helplessly into the remainder of the building Eighteen had hit.

Now Trunks got serious.  "It's time to end this," he thought.  "It's time to put my plan into action."  He put out his hand, facing Android 17, who hadn't had a chance to recover.  A small yellow energy ball appeared by his palm, and grew larger and larger until it was about a foot in diameter.

"Now, you die!!" he shouted as he launched his attack at the helpless Android.

"Seventeen!!"

Trunks turned to see that Android 18 was flying as fast as she could toward her brother, but she knew she wouldn't get there fast enough.  Without thinking, she fired an energy blast toward the scene.  Just before Trunks' blast would have killed Seventeen, Eighteen's blast collided with it and they both exploded.  When the dust cleared, they could see that Android 17 was still in one piece, and to his sister's relief, he was actually getting up.

He looked up into the air, where Android 18 hovered.  He flew up to her and said, "Thanks, sis.  That was close.  Now let's get him back!"

Eighteen put her hand on his shoulder and said, "Wait.  Seventeen, he's a lot stronger than he used to be.  Maybe we should go.  He can't sense our power levels, so he probably wouldn't find us if we left."

Android 17 was obviously overconfident.  He had been turned away when Eighteen landed a kick to Trunks' head.  He didn't see how unaffected the Saiyan was.  "Are you kidding?" he asked.  "That little punk's only been lucky.  Come on, let's go finish him!"  With that, he raced downward at full speed, prepared to "finish" Trunks.

"Seventeen, no!" Android 18 called after him.  "He'll kill you!"

It was too late, though.  Android 17 was just about to "kill" Trunks when the Saiyan easily kicked him to the side, sending him tumbling into another pile of ruble.  He aimed his open palm at the Android again, and began to power up the final energy blast.

"Seventeen!"

Trunks turned and saw that Eighteen was again interrupting his attack.  As she approached him, he unexpectedly grabbed her foot and pulled her to the ground.  He put his right arm around her arms so she couldn't move.

"Get off of me!" she demanded as she struggled to break his grip, but it was no use.  Trunks once more powered up an energy ball, this one even bigger than the other two.

"Now," he said to Android 18.  "You know what feels like to be so helpless.  What it feels like to know that you're going to lose someone you love.  It's ironic, isn't it?  You two have done this to so many people, for so many years, and now it has become your fate."

"Let go of me," Eighteen muttered between gritted teeth.  Trunks could feel that she was trying with all her might to break free.  He knew by how she slipped and squirmed that she knew she had no way of escaping, and was now at her most desperate struggle.  "I mean it, let me go!"

"Begging won't do you any good," Trunks replied mercilessly.  "Not after you've ignored the desperate pleas of all those people, after you've played with their lives as if they were toys."

"Hey!"

They both turned to see that Android 17 had gotten up.  "Get off my sister!"  He raced toward the two at full speed, and Trunks remembered that he had been adding to his energy ball the whole time that he had been lecturing Eighteen.

She realized this, too, and called out, "Seventeen, no! Stay back!"

Again, it was too late.  "Now you die!!!" Trunks called out.  He unleashed his attack, which was even bigger than he'd thought it would be!  Even Android 17 knew that he had no chance of deflecting this blast.  He stood for a moment, in shock, with a blank look on his face.

Eighteen watched in horror as the white blast engulfed her brother, and only a shadowy figure could be seen inside it.  "NOOO!!!!" she cried as the blurry figure began to disintegrate.  "SEVENTEEN!!!!"  She leaned forward, trying to escape Trunks' restraint to save her brother.  But with her arms held back, she could only watch as the remainder of Android 17's body broke up and dissolved into the current of red and white energy.

When Trunk's attack had faded away to nothing, Android 17 was nowhere to be seen.  Nothing, not even a strand of black hair, had survived.  There was even a large hole, about thirty feet long, where the bottom of the blast had cut through the ground.

He noticed that Eighteen wasn't struggling any more.  He withdrew his arm from her, and she fell to her knees.  Even though he'd expected her to be upset, Trunks was shocked at how hard she had to try to stop herself from crying.  He couldn't see her face because her back was toward him, but he could tell from her stillness that she had been deeply pierced.

Out of pure coincidence, the storm Trunks had left back at Capsule Corp. and his spot in the woods caught up to him now.  Thunder and lightning provided a melancholy atmosphere, which seemed suited for the occasion.  Rain poured down over both Trunks and Android 18, filling them both with guilt and sorrow.

For a few seconds, Trunks felt like the merciless killer.  "What am I doing?" he asked himself.  "I just held back a helpless person as I killed her brother!  Am I the evil Android?"  Then, he stopped himself and came to his senses.  "No.  I'm doing the right thing.  The Androids have done this to so many innocent people, and what goes around comes around.  They're finally through.

Android 18's sadness quickly turned to anger.  "How could that brat do this?!" she raged inside her head.  Her fists were clenched tightly, and she stared blankly at the ground as she continued, "How he can do this to Seventeen?  How can he do this to me?!"

"AH!!" she shouted as she suddenly fired an energy blast where Trunks had been standing behind her.  But alas!  He wasn't there!  As the blast exploded near some building elsewhere in the city, Eighteen looked upward and saw Trunks' body off in the distance.

"He's leaving?!" she thought, shocked at the idea.  "It's just over?  He's not going to kill me?"  For some reason, this disappointed her.  She wanted Trunks to kill her.  "How can he kill Seventeen and leave me here?!  What am I supposed to do now?"

"Hey!" she called after Trunks, who by now looked like a tiny dot that was barely visible.  "Get back here!!"  The Saiyan ignored her, though, and in fact increased his speed.  Eighteen was about to follow him, and even leapt into the air.  But she stopped herself, knowing that she would never catch up to him.  "Even if I did," she thought gloomily, "I couldn't do anything to him."

When she realized that she would not be able to avenge her brother's death, Eighteen knew that the rest of her immortal life as an Android was going to be one of misery.  With tears forming in her eyes, she slowly lifted off the ground again, this time in the other direction.  She pulled her heavy blonde hair out of her face, which had been plastered there by the downpour of rain.  She now had to struggle very hard not to cry, but she knew that she couldn't resist it and stopped fighting the tears that were building up in her eyes.  She sobbed silently as she flew off to whatever home she had.

***

            So…how is it?  Please review!!!  I must know!!!

--the Easter Bunny