Hello again! Well, when I said this chapter would be longer, it was truer than I expected. I'm not too sure how I feel about this chapter, so I'm excited to hear your thoughts! Review if you can, otherwise enjoy!
Disclaimer-I don't own DBZ or anything else, but perhaps this laptop.
Chapter three: Hitchhiking and Mass
Three weeks of silence from Vegeta and it was starting to creep her out. Not that she was upset for the lack of the annoying prince's presence, she was thoroughly enjoying it! Almost an entire month had passed since they started this little game of theirs and he hadn't forced himself on her since the time he barged into her room. But she couldn't help the nagging feeling that this was the calm before the storm. Vegeta was plotting something, and she wasn't about to sit around and wait for the bomb to drop; so she kept herself busy.
In some ways this whole thing was good for her. She had gotten more work done in the last month the she had ever done in three and, with no boy to add drama, she was sort of happy! With so much getting done and more time to hang with girl friends she was feeling much more confident and fulfilled. This whole 'avoiding Vegeta' mission had done her more good than she ever imagined it would!
No, it wasn't the fact that she didn't seem him that freaked her out, but what did concern her was that he didn't even seem to care! Life with the Saiyan prince almost seemed to go back to how it was before the wager started; seeing him only at a few meals a week and sometimes at night, but now when he needed something fixed he went to her father instead of her. He was planning something. She knew it! But…what?
Well, as she said before, she wasn't going to just sit around and wait. Luckily today, she had a meeting in the city to approve some selling strategies and get monthly reports and that would take up most of the day. Wearing a turquoise blouse with a black pencil skirt, jacket to match and black stilettos, she left with a coffee at around 9:00 in her capsule car to the city. When she got there she parked in the VIP section, right outside the doors of the skyscraper labeled: "Capsule Corporation". Glancing in the rearview mirror at her complexion she smiled, then left into the building. Upon entry she was greeted by she was greeted by the receptionist, who led her to the conference room on the twelfth floor. A smirk grew silently on her face as she caught many heads turn upon her passing.
Ha! She still had it. Eat that Yamcha!
The rest was boring to say the least. She arrive at the conference room, waited for a few more members to join them, then they got underway. It turned into a longer meeting then originally planned, ending roughly till 4:30. She was happy to leave when they finally concluded. Not that she didn't mind doing this part of the job, it was fun to feel important, but she didn't like office buildings. The smell and the cramped spaces made her feel like she needed to run and do cartwheels in the parking lot when she was done. She often blamed that on all the adventures she suffered through with the Z worriers. Once you hung out with them every day life seemed so dull. So as soon as she gave her final handshakes and said farewells she quickly made her way to the elevator and out the office doors.
However she nearly tripped on her heals upon the sight that greeted her. Sitting where her capsule car USED to be sat a huge pile of steaming scrap metal. Smoke billowed from under the hood and the once red paint was now covered in black soot. A small fire emitted from what looked like the seats in side, but the gaping hole directly in the middle of the car made it hard to tell what was what now. She dropped her brief case in shock and ran up to the car.
"No! Oh my gosh, what in the world-"
"Oh my goodness, would you look at that." Said a low, amused voice from behind her. It was then that all the paranoia and suspicions that had been hanging over her head for the past three weeks suddenly came crashing down on her as she comprehended the situation. Anger erupted inside her as she whirled around to see the man she momentarily loathed, leaning against the buildings wall, arms crossed and watching her smugly.
"VEGETA, WHAT THE HECK DID YOU DO TO MY CAR?"
His eyes widened and gave her a sarcastically shocked look. "Me? Why you've got it all wrong woman! It was horrible; you really should have seen it."
Enraged she couldn't even roll her eyes at his charade. Planting her feet she glared holes into the prince as he pushed himself off the wall and moseyed over to her.
"Really it was a spectacular show on the culprits' part." He continued, his smirk never faltering, "This man came from nowhere and began throwing Ki blasts at your car and at an unbelievable level. I swear, I've never seen anything like it. Naturally, being such a GOOD person, I dispatched of the man just before you exited this strange structure."
She just glared at him, unable to believe what she was hearing. He was being sarcastic her!
"Vegeta, this is INEXCUSABLE!" She screamed, causing the gathering crowd to pick up a few more members. "You can't just blow up my car, how am I supposed to get home?"
He looked up at the sky. "Hmmm, that is a good question. Ah! Wait I have an idea!" He then leaned close to her, placing his hands in his pockets. "How about I give you a ride?"
She blinked, and then growled, "No!"
He stared at her, and then shrugged and began to walk away. "Ah well then fine, so be it. Have fun walking."
"Ha, jokes on you!" She yelled after him with a smirk. "See on THIS planet we have things called Cell Phones to contact people when jerks like YOU wreak people's cars!"
"You mean that contraption that you left in the car?" He shouted over his shoulder. She stopped and considered his words. Crap, she had left it in the car so no one would interrupt her during the meeting!
"Hope those shoes are accurate attire for such a hike!" He called with a chuckle. She gave a cry in frustration and stomped her foot, making a loud snap. After a few moments of feuming she looked up and noticed the crowd that had gathered.
"What are you looking at?" She screamed. The crowd quickly dispersed and left her alone with her options. She could always call home from the office building, but who knows how long it would take to get a ride out here. Plus she hated being a bother to her dad…
Not seeing much of a choice, she glared up at Vegetas retreating form. Well. It couldn't be all that bad. And besides, this was his first move to "woo" her (albeit blowing up her car was NOT on her 'turns me on' list) since she started avoiding him and she had to admit, she was a bit curious at what Vegeta had planned…
"Fine." She whined with a roll of her eyes and a sigh. Glancing over at the prick, she noticed that he has stopped and was looking back at her. Glaring at him for a few seconds more, she straightened herself with dignity and began to walk towards him. Once she was a few feet away he turned to fully face her with a smirk.
"Change your mind?"
"I just decided to humor you." She said, crossing her arms, trying to keep as much poise as possible.
"Hnn..." He answered, his smirk growing, then he turned and continuing forward again. She blinked, and then walked after him.
He glanced back at her, "Well what?"
She frowned, "Aren't you taking me home?"
He shrugged and looked forward again. "Perhaps later."
Her glare was back as she caught up to his speed and walked on his right side. "What do you mean later? Vegeta, I've got work to do-"
"Did I mention, your father said for me to tell you, great job on getting ahead of schedule." He cut in, his leer forming again. "I'm not surprised; you have been busy these days. It looks like my work ethic has rubbed off on you."
She snorted at that and shook her head. "Right because you are such a prime example."
That swiped the grin off his face, and she fought to keep it from growing on hers. It was amazing the response you could get by simply poking at his ego.
"I have excellent work ethic." He argued. "Much better than any of those other idiots, including Kakarot."
"If you mean killing yourself before the androids get her, then yeah, you got that down pact." She said with a laugh. "Seriously Vegeta, I can't believe you've made it this far without your body just collapsing into a pile of goo. You might as well cut off your arms and legs, it might be healthier then the training you put yourself through."
"If you are referring to when the Gravity chamber collapsed under my GREAT power, it simply caught me off guard, and I was FINE woman." He growled. "You humans just don't understand the sacrifice needed to succeed. If I want to become stronger then Kakarot then stopping because its hurts a little is out of the question."
She watched him for a moment, but he did not meet her gaze. Knowing she wasn't going to win this one she sighed and shook her head.
"Whatever, just no breaking yourself until the androids come."
"Hmm, I'm afraid that's impossible, Saiyans don't 'break'." He answered, his grin returning again. She rolled her eyes and finally asked the question that was nagging at the back of her mind.
"Um, Vegeta," She looked around the city, trying to get her bearings, "If we aren't going home, then where exactly ARE we going?"
His grin widened widened and she couldn't help but notice that his back got straighter.
"Well you see woman, I've been doing some research..." He purred. She cocked an eyebrow and watched as his ego seemed to double. "…And in my research I've learned of a place that females on this planet can't seem to get enough of."
Bulmas mind flashed to candle lit restaurants and clubs downtown with neon lights as the suspense wrapped itself around her. She looked up expectantly, waiting to hear this destination that he had put so much effort into finding.
"The Mass." He said, looking back at her.
All the suspense fell like cold turkey and her expression changed to completely confused. Since when was Vegeta catholic?
"We're going to church on a Tuesday?" She asked attempting to clarify. His ego dropped just as hard as the suspense had and he returned her confused look.
"What, no! I said we're going to the mass."
"What do you mean THE mass?" She asked, slipping into her problem solving mode. He stared at her for a moment, the stopped walking and started digging into his pocket. She stopped and waited for him. He then pulled out what looked like a page from a magazine and started to read it.
"You read English?" She asked, honestly surprised as she peered at the page. It was torn from a teenager's magazine.
"Of course I can, I am well versed in hundreds of languages." He stated like a fact of life, "Yours here is simple enough. Ah! Here it is the mall!"
She stared at him, and then doubled over laughing. Vegeta jumped slightly at her sudden response, but quickly covered it up with a glare.
"What is so funny Woman?"
"You said we were going to mass!" Bulma managed through breaths. The blush that started to rise in his cheeks only made her laugh more.
"T-they are almost the same word!" He yelled, crossing his arms defensively. "Might as well be the same thing!"
This only proved to make her laugh more, which only made him more embarrassed. "Oh then pray tell me what's so different between the two words?" He asked, his voice low, but she was laughing so hard she could barely breathe. After a moment he gave a frustrated growl, and then leaned back against the building that they were passing, waiting for her to recover. Many giggle fits and long breaths later; Bulma finally recovered enough to walk straight.
"T-that…that's just too funny." She said, wiping the tears from her eyes.
"Are you quite through?" He sneered. With a smile and a nod from her, he pushed off the wall and they continued walking.
"In summary," He restarted with a slight growl, "I did some research and learned that the women on this planet greatly enjoy this activity. Am I wrong?"
She thought for a moment. Actually, he was quite right. She really did enjoy shopping, even though she hadn't gone in a while. Yamcha always hated being dragged to the mall, and she never liked going alone. Plus her closet WAS running low on the newest season styles…why not take advantage of the Saiyan for a bit?
"No, you're right." She said with a nod, "I've been meaning to go anyways."
A few minutes later they arrived at one of the biggest malls in the country. Its large glass windows shimmered in the setting sun and music could be heard from inside. Upon entering Bulma had to stop because Vegeta suddenly did. Looking up at him, his eyes were taking in the enormous building, with all its lights, sounds, smells and people. Her eyebrows knitted together for a moment in concern, wondering if he would be okay with so many humans around.
He looked around a bit more, and then looked back at her, his face unreadable. She cleared her throat awkwardly and looked away. "Um, you okay?"
"O-of course I am." He said, but the arrogance behind his voice was gone. She bit her lip and was about to suggest they do something else when he suddenly started moving again, which she quickly followed.
"Tell me woman," He said as she fell in step with him, "What exactly does one DO at a mass?"
"Whatever, answer the question." He growled. She giggled and placed her hands behind her back.
"What, you came here not knowing what a mall is?"
She noticed his lip twitch down in a frown before looking away. She guessed that meant no. Rolling her eyes, she explained,
"Well it's a building full of shop owners. People come here so they can get things from multiple stores, giving the store owners more business than if they had their own building."
"How bizarre…" The Saiyan mumbled, his eyes trying to keep up with all that was happening around him. The mall wasn't as nearly packed as it could have been, but Bulma wondered if Vegeta had ever been in such a big crowd of people before. Biting the inside of her cheek she resisted a smile then turned to face the mall.
"We need a plan of attack!" She stated, placing her hands on her hips. She could almost feel Vegetas ears perk up at her last word, so she quickly corrected, "No not a real battle plan, don't even." She mentally pulled the mall map from her memories and highlighted all of her favorite stores. Then, after two minutes she nodded and faced him again.
"Alright." She began, "As the man on this date you have two obligations." To prove her point she held up two fingers. "ONE you follow me wherever I go understood? I don't want you getting out of my sight because there's no telling what trouble you'll get into if you do! TWO, you are the designated pack mule. If I hand you a bag you hold onto it until I tell you otherwise, got it?"
She could see him grinding his teeth at her demands, but he said nothing and looked away; making her almost scream in happiness. Ha! Now he knew how SHE felt when he bossed HER around!
"Whatever woman, let's get this over with." He grumbled, crossing his arms. With a smug smirk, she turned on her heal and began to go through with her battle plan.
Things went surprisingly smooth after that. Bulma, followed closely by Vegeta quickly made their way to every one of her favorite stores; comparing prices, finding sales and purchasing clothes. It was here that she remembered how much fun this was and how much she missed doing this on a regular basis. She was having such a good time in fact, that she even forgot about her poor capsule car! Trying on clothes and finding great deals seemed to lift the stress of work and Yamcha off her shoulders for a few hours. It really felt nice…
…But she wouldn't let him know that.
"Alright, there are two more stores I want to hit on this level," She stated, more to herself then to him, "Then I think we can call it a day! I'm sure you're probably regretting that you brought me here anyway, right?" She turned with a smirk but it vanished when she noticed he was not directly behind her anymore. Instead he was standing a few feet back, looking up through the glass at a manikin in the window. Surprised, she quietly walked towards him and looked up to see what he was looking at.
The store was a men's clothing store with a black and white logo and glass doors. The manikin directly in front of them sported a pair of dark jeans with a white tee shirt. Over top of the tee was a black, leather jacket with a gold zipper. Glancing back and forth, she noticed he was staring at the jacket.
Unable to stop herself she gave his appearance an overview. He was currently wearing the only human cloths he owned; being the pink BADMAN shirt, some yellow pants and green shoes. To say the scene in front of her looked simply pathetic would be an understatement. There stood Vegeta, holding eight bags and three boxes of clothes, looking like he got his own from a dumpster, staring pitifully at a stylish manikin as if it were taunting him. This just had to be remedied.
Powerless to stop the smile that formed on her face she sighed and shook her head. Her sound quickly snapped him back to reality and he resumed his grumpy look. She then signaled for him to put down the bags. Confused, he obeyed and she pulled out a capsule and activated it. Once all her things were safely inside she placed it in her pocket, then placed her hands on her hips, staring at him. Unsure what these actions meant, he just stared at her back.
"Alright, your turn."
She smirked at the confusion that suddenly swept through his face as she opened the door to the shop and went in. Hesitantly, he followed.
Bulma never took him as a man of style, but once he found his footing in the store, she couldn't help but be impressed. He seemed to skip anything light weight or flimsy items and instead went for more durable clothing. He picked up the jacket in the window, a set of dark and light jeans, and some white, blue, red and black cotton tee-shirts. They then visited a few more places, completing his purchases with a pair of tennis shoes, a pair of black boots, sweat pants and hoodie, some long sleeved cotton shirts and some black gloves that he fancied. Once he was finished he was back to being grumpy, but this time she could sense that it was more of an act then an actuality. Although he wore the frown, his eyes seemed to shine a bit more than before. Thus she couldn't be mad at him when he told her that if she wanted to stay alive for more than three years he needed to take them home. Once she had placed his purchases in a second capsule, and then walked out of the mall and into the street. Once there, it dawned on her.
"You have to fly me!"
"That's correct woman." He growled, not waiting for her permission before grabbing her around the waist with his left arm.
"But I'm wearing a skirt!" She hissed, trying to pry his arm off as she glared at him. He cocked an eyebrow at her,
"SO!" She growled low, "Any guy over here is going to see up my skirt!"
"Teh. Don't flatter yourself." He answered with a roll of his eyes and, before she could say anything else, he rocketed them both straight into the clouds.
Meanwhile, down below, Master Roshi took off his sunglasses to get a better view.
"Yahoo! I saw them!" He cried out in joy, making everyone turn and give him a strange look.