.:Author's Note:. This was originally written as a sequel to Beneath the Stars by popular demand, but I decided that it could do well on it's own as a separate oneshot. However, if you do want some insight on Vegeta and Goku's relationship prior to this, you might want to read Beneath the Stars first. Rather ironically, I came up with this idea because I didn't want BTS to become a full blown story, and this ended it pretty well.
When this is set should be pretty obvious.
Disclaimer: Dragonball and Dragonball Z belong to Akira Toriyama.
WARNING: This story contains sexually explicit M/M content, violence, character death, angst, and all around Vegeta-ness.
Vegeta watched the Saiyan thrashing beneath him, sweat soaking through his torn clothes and chest heaving in heavy pants. He growled and sent another kick to the man's midriff, sending him skidding across the dry ground.
"Come on Kakkarot! What's wrong with you today!" Vegeta snapped angrily. The younger saiyan coughed, spitting out a thick glob of blood as he struggled to push himself upright. Vegeta tapped his foot impatiently.
"We've been at this for three hours and you've hardly been able to land a hit on me. Hell, you haven't even powered up to Super Saiyan. If this is your idea of pity or help, then knock it off!" The prince snarled, gathering energy in his fist and sending it flying in his rival's direction. The exhausted saiyan barely managed to dodge it before crumbling to his knees and slumping back to the ground.
Vegeta frowned and stormed over. Goku was never this relenting, even when they were just sparring. He looked down with relative disgust at the saiyan, whose breaths came in heavy gasps. He simply stared down at him until Goku managed to crack open an eye and attempt a smile.
"Sorry Vegeta," he gasped, "it… I guess… I'm not in the best shape… to be trying to spar…"
The prince glared pointedly at Goku. "If you weren't feeling well, you should have said so," Vegeta snapped. "I don't particularly enjoy using you as a punching bag when you're at this pathetic level. It gives me no satisfaction whatsoever."
Goku managed a brief chuckle. "Sorry… I wish… I could give you my all… Vegeta…" he said between pants. He coughed violently and spat out some more blood. Vegeta heaved a sigh.
"Look, that's enough for today. Go home, and come back when you're not a complete mess, alright?" Vegeta glanced down at Goku, and was slightly taken aback by the flash of disappointment that crossed over the saiyan's face.
"I… see… I'm… sorry. I guess… I'll leave," Goku said, rolling himself over on his stomach and pushing himself upright. He groaned as a bolt of pain shot through his chest again, almost doubling over again, but forced himself to stand to his feet, limbs trembling. He looked up to see Vegeta staring at him, expression unreadable.
"You're a mess, Kakkarot," he finally said. Goku choked a laugh.
"I guess," he replied faintly. The saiyan felt himself grow dizzy and winced, trying to shuffle his feet out to keep himself balanced, but the nausea doubled with a new jolt of pain, and he felt himself tumble to the side. He braced himself for the fall, only to land against a softer surface.
"Something is clearly wrong with you," he heard Vegeta say as the smaller saiyan lifted one of Goku's arms over his shoulder.
Goku chuckled, blinking to regain his blurred vision.
"I thought this was established a while ago," he muttered humorously. The prince snorted.
"More so than usual, I mean. Either way, I can't bring you home looking like that. Your wife will stir up a ruckus to destroy the neighborhood and all the blame will go to me." Goku smiled faintly. He felt himself be pulled up into the air by Vegeta, and let himself be carried off through the wind, closing his eyes and leaning into crook of the prince's neck.
When he came to, Goku blinked open his eyes to realize he was in an unfamiliar room, in an unfamiliar bed. He raised a hand and rubbed his eyes, noticing that the wounds on his arms, as well as the rest of his body, had been bandaged.
"Glad to see someone decided to awake." Goku started at the familiar sarcastic rasp.
"Hey Vegeta," he greeted the prince tiredly. Vegeta leaned against the door, having changed into a pair of sweats and loose shirt, and glowered down at the injured saiyan.
"You nearly gave the woman a heart attack, you know. Obviously she thought I'd done something terrible."
"It's easy to believe," Goku said, chuckling. The prince narrowed his eyes but ignored the comment.
"Even she has no idea what's wrong with you. She bandaged you up and ran a few tests. Apparently you're feverish, but not sick. In all honesty, I would be ashamed if you were that liable to a common cold, Kakkarot."
Goku rolled his eyes and smiled. "I doubt that's the problem. I've seen Chichi when she gets sick, but the symptoms didn't match. Speaking of which –"
"Bulma called her and said you were staying over," Vegeta interceded.
Goku blinked."Oh," he said. "How long have I been out?"
"A whole day," Vegeta said, smirking. "You passed out yesterday, believe it or not." Goku blinked, eyes wide, and groaned.
"You have to be kidding me," he muttered.
"Afraid not," Vegeta returned. Goku paused, finally looking around.
"Is… is this your room?"
Vegeta grimaced. "No way. You think I would let a sweaty, blood-soaked idiot like you anywhere near my bed?" Goku laughed, wincing at the effort.
"I guess not," he replied in a raspy voice before falling into a fit of coughs.
"Have you tried taking one of those magical beans of yours?" Vegeta asked. "They seemed to produce rather desirable effects last I used them." Goku shook his head.
"I tried, but it didn't work. The beans were completely ineffective."
Vegeta uttered a low growl from his throat. "Well isn't that inconvenient as hell," he snarled angrily. Vegeta pushed off the wall and walked up beside the bed. He picked up a small brown sack on a small table by the bed and shook out a senzu bean, handing it to Goku.
"Eat it. If it won't cure your sickness, at least it'll heal your wounds. I don't want to have to clean up after you if you leave bloodstains all over the damn bed." Goku smiled gratefully and took the bean, chewing it slowly before swallowing it with some effort. Almost instantly, all his physical wounds vanished, along with a good deal of his present soreness. The saiyan released a sigh, settling into his pillow.
"The woman wants to run some tests on you when she gets back," Vegeta said. Goku glanced up at the prince through tired, half-lidded eyes.
"Really? What kind of tests?" Vegeta shrugged.
"How would I know. Blood samples?" He saw Goku shudder and snorted.
"Don't tell me your trauma of needles is going to pop up now, Kakkarot," he jeered. The saiyan blanched and shot Vegeta a sour look.
"Shut it Vegeta. I just don't like them, and you know it."
Vegeta laughed. "What a mockery! The savior of the universe afraid of needles!"
Goku glared at him from beneath his covers. "If you're just going to insult me, you can leave, Vegeta," Goku growled. Vegeta's lip curled into a cold smile and he turned around.
"Fine by me," he said. "The woman should be back soon anyways." Before he could take a step forward, Vegeta felt a hand slip over his midriff and pull him back towards the bed. He stiffened, but made no move to stop a second hand as it wrapped around his hips.
"Don't go," Goku muttered, leaning his head against the small of Vegeta's back. The saiyan grunted but didn't move. Goku smiled to himself and pulled the saiyan towards him until he fell back, leaning into Goku's arms as the larger saiyan sat against the bedframe. They sat in silence, Vegeta settling his head against Goku's collarbone while the other gently breathed into the prince's hair, hands still loosely wrapped around his waist.
"What is wrong with you, Kakkarot?" Vegeta asked softly. Goku sighed.
"I'm not sure," he replied. "It's just… lately I've been feeling tired a lot. And my chest will go through these sudden, unnatural pains without being touched. It's strange. I… It feels like something's invading my body." The soft-bred saiyan pulled Vegeta closer to him, inhaling his unique, wild scent. Vegeta sighed and touched Goku's hand, tracing a finger along the man's calloused knuckles.
"Well… it needs to stop. I'm going to get out of shape if you don't strengthen up soon."
Goku smiled. "What about your affair with the gravity room?" he asked. Vegeta grunted.
"The gravity room can't teach me to become a super saiyan," he said matter-of-factly.
"That's a pity," Goku chuckled. Vegeta paused, as if in contemplation.
"So what are you going to do?" Vegeta asked in a low voice. The other saiyan sighed, running his fingers along Vegeta's stomach.
"I don't know. Hope, I guess. If I'm lucky, Bulma will be able to find a cure, or at least something to stop the pain." Goku smiled and nuzzled into the prince's neck."I think I should feel flattered that you're worrying about me," he chuckled. Vegeta flushed and crossed his arms over his chest.
"I'm not worried," he growled. "You of all people, I should hope, should be able to take care of yourself. As much as I hate to admit it, you are the strongest warrior." Goku blinked and smiled widely, pleased by the unexpected praise.
"You think so?" he asked. Vegeta snorted.
"Yes quite. In terms of spirit and an uncanny ability to cling to this foolish hope of yours, you are quite unbeatable." Goku laughed, pressing his face in Vegeta's hair.
"Well if it's any conciliation, your highness, I find your stubbornness and pride entirely unmatched. For a long while, I thought Piccolo was the worse I'd ever see. And boy was I wrong." Vegeta sniffed, snatching a glance at the saiyan behind him.
"I'm not sure if you're trying to compliment or insult me, Kakkarot."
Goku laughed and pressed the smaller saiyan closer to him. "I missed you, Vegeta," he said softly into the man's neck. Vegeta shivered and shifted uncomfortably.
"You sound so human, Kakkarot," he replied in a guarded tone. Goku shrugged.
"Well, that's what happens when you're raised around them for your entire life. If you were born and raised on earth, I don't think you would be any different."
"Well I highly doubt that, because that would have meant that I hadn't been born a prince, which is clearly my birthright," the saiyan prince spat. Goku felt the man tense in his arms, and quickly dropped the subject.
"I know, I know. I just..." he trailed off, eyes straying away and staring up at the ceiling listlessly. "I feel like it's not going to last."
"What isn't going to last?" Vegeta questioned. Goku waved a hand.
"Just... the peace, our lifestyles, everything. This," Vegeta didn't need to ask to understand what Goku meant as the saiyan's hands tightened around his waist, "... me." Vegeta detached Goku's hands from his waist, ignoring the mewl of protest from the other man, and turned around to look his rival dead in the eye, straddling his legs.
"Stop talking as if you were going to die, you fool," he growled. Goku blinked, pausing as if in thought before breaking out into a wide grin.
"Was I?" he asked with a chuckle. Vegeta smirked.
"Yes, you were. Being a pessimist doesn't suit you."
Goku smiled, slipping his hands around Vegeta's back. "Then what does suit me?" he asked softly.
"That insufferably carefree idiot smile of yours," Vegeta answered in all surety. Goku laughed, throwing back his head. Vegeta frowned and straightened.
"What? What's so damn funny?" he asked indignantly. Goku straightened and leaned in, a warm smile on his lips.
"You," he replied simply, pressing his lips against the saiyan prince's. Vegeta stiffened instinctively, but relaxed at Goku's tentative coaxing. He found himself accepting and even returning the man's lustful kisses. Goku's arms tightened around Vegeta's body, pulling the man closer to him. Vegeta suddenly pulled away from the kiss, licking his lips.
"I don't think the woman would want you engaging in... strenuous exercise in your current condition," he said in a husky voice. Goku leaned in, nipping Vegeta's neck.
"Do you honestly care, Vegeta?" he asked between kisses. The prince snorted softly, running his fingers through Goku's hair.
"Not at all," he replied, "just don't come crying when your condition acts up and you can't move." Goku smirked.
"I would think you would be more bothered by that than I would," he said, nibbling at the prince's collarbone and slipping his hands up Vegeta's shirt. The smaller saiyan groaned, arching his back and allowing Goku to remove the article of clothing. Goku suddenly paused, frowning.
"Hey, what about Bulma?" he asked. "Won't she be arriving soon?"
Vegeta growled, tugging at a strand of Goku's messy hair. "We still have plenty of time. The woman shouldn't be back for another half hour. She took the brat with her as well. Besides, you can always whisk us away with your instant transmission technique, can't you?" Goku processed this momentarily before a soft smile touched his lips.
"Sorry," he said, kissing Vegeta's collarbone and sliding his hands along Vegeta's torso. Vegeta grunted impatiently, shoving Goku's investigative hands away and began making his own bold moves on the larger saiyan's handsomely built body.
The prince made quick work of removing the now useless, bloodied bandages covering Goku's body, tossing them to the floor. Goku inhaled sharply as Vegeta traced his hands over the man's chest and hips, nibbling at his neck and venturing lower and lower, consummating in his state of complete control. Goku moaned and wriggled down so that he could lay himself out flat on the bed. Vegeta allowed this, but kept his hands and tongue tracing circles over the younger man's body. The prince greatly enjoyed these moments of superiority, when he felt invincible as he teased and tortured moans and hisses out of the larger saiyan. Vegeta pulled away with a hiss as Goku's hands slipped along his back and beneath the fabric of his pants. With Goku's help he quickly threw off the last of his own clothes, and crouched over the younger man with a hungry smirk on his lips.
Goku looked up at Vegeta and smiled, raising a hand to touch the man's cheek. Vegeta flinched at the familiar gesture, regarding Goku guardedly.
"Kakkarot," he began. The saiyan pressed a finger to the prince's lips. He suddenly grabbed Vegeta by the hips and flipped him over on the bed beneath him, tracing kisses along his neck.
"I thought you were sick," Vegeta growled amusedly, compliantly raising his head as Goku nibbled at his jaw.
"I am, but I can ignore it," Goku replied simply. The prince moaned in response as Goku ran a hand along Vegeta's inner thigh. Goku shivered and leaned forward, placing delicate kisses along Vegeta's waist, trailing lower until his tongue brushed against the saiyan's twitching organ. Vegeta growled, breath hitching as Goku took him in. The saiyan panted and moaned, hands twisting through the sheets until he finally came. Goku slowly lifted his head, licking away the last of the saiyan's seed he'd swallowed, and smiled at Vegeta, planting a soft kiss on his lips. Vegeta grimaced, weakly shoving Goku away.
"Urgh, I don't need to taste myself, Kakkarot," he said. Goku chuckled and kissed Vegeta's cheek, jawbone, and neck, hand gently coaxing the prince back to life. This time, however, the hand ventured further down, gently prodding Vegeta's entrance. The saiyan bucked beneath the touch, arching his back as Goku teased and stretched the tight area. Goku looked around curiously for something to use. In his condition, he really didn't want to resort to using blood again. Vegeta noticed his actions and motioned towards the bedside table, on which was a small tube of antiseptic cream. Goku reached out and grabbed it, twisting off the cap with his teeth and applying a decent amount to his fingertips before reinserting two slick fingers into the impatient saiyan. Vegeta howled, feet scraping against the covers.
"Fuck, Kakkarot," the saiyan snarled, "hurry up will you!" Goku smiled and removed his fingers. He slickened himself with the cream, tossed the tube aside, and gently pushed himself into Vegeta, cradling the saiyan as he was taken in. Vegeta released a hitched breath as he was filled, digging his nails into Goku's skin. Goku embraced him close to his body, nuzzling into the saiyan's dark hair.
"Kakkarot, you can move now," he rasped. Goku paused before obediently pulling back, kissing his forehead gently and ramming back in, slowly and gently. Vegeta groaned, hands fisting through the sheets and tearing them apart. Something about Goku's demeanor – the way he was so gently making love – confused him. Their last escapade was plenty rigorous, and Vegeta momentarily thought of the supposed illness, but Goku did not appear to be suffering. He only looked down at Vegeta with wide, dark eyes, something deep and gentle searing through the prince's skin. He growled.
"Harder, Kakkarot." Goku grinned and captured the prince's lips, ramming quicker and deeper, but retaining a similar excruciating gentleness that sent the smaller saiyan into a frenzy. He dug his hands into Goku's hair, wrapped his legs around his rival's abdomen, and completely abandoned himself to the man's feral lust. Their chests pressed against one another in heated grappling, hearts beating together to a wild rhythm. Finally, with a shudder and a howl, both saiyans came and fell to a sweating, heaving heap. Vegeta shoved Goku's heavy form off of him, but hardly attempted to remove the saiyan's arm still wrapped around his waist. They lay there momentarily, each regaining their breath and calming their rapidly beating hearts. Finally Vegeta pushed himself upright with a groan. He looked around for his clothes, and made to fetch them when Goku wrapped his arms around Vegeta's chest and pulled him close to the other. Vegeta stiffened and glanced questioningly at the saiyan buried in his neck.
"Kakkarot, I don't think we have time for another round," he pointed out, "not if we want to get rid of the evidence." Vegeta gestured to the ruined, dirtied sheets. Goku didn't move for a long while, and Vegeta was sorely tempted to elbow him in the ribs, but something held him back. Something was really off about the usually carefree, optimistic and easygoing saiyan. It wasn't like him to behave in such a reserved manner, as he was usually going all out and without holding back, especially when it came to Vegeta who he knew lashed out any time he believed Goku was holding out on him. Finally, Goku slipped his arms away, releasing Vegeta with a smile that hardly reached his eyes, and slipped off the bed. Vegeta paused before grabbing his clothes off the floor.
"Take a shower," he pointed to the door connected to the room. "I'll take care of the sheets. Grab some clothes from the closet. It used to belong to scar-face, but some of it might fit you." Goku nodded gratefully and padded into the room, closing it behind him with a sigh. Vegeta waited until he could hear the water running to turn around. He was still undressed, but grabbed the ripped and sweaty sheets, marked here and there with stains of blood and something else, and left the room, walking until he entered a small room and dropped the fabric into a laundry machine. After staring at it for a few minutes, he grabbed the detergent bottle, throwing in a capful as he had seen Bulma do, and pressed the start button, hardly bothering to reset the dials. Vegeta returned to Goku's chambers and grabbed the dirty bandages, throwing them in the trash can in the corner of the room.
Satisfied, the prince returned to his own room and allowed himself a quick shower before slipping back into his clothes and returning to Goku's room. Upon opening the door he found the saiyan sitting on the bed, clothed in only a pair of black sweatpants with a red, short-sleeved shirt hanging limply from his clasped hands, staring emptily down at the ground. His still-dripping hair fell over his face in as messy a manner as always, and droplets of water slid down his neck and over his shoulders in small rivulets. Vegeta sighed in irritation and grabbed a towel from the bathroom, throwing it at the saiyan.
"Dry your hair and cloth yourself, you fool," he ordered, then, as a side note, "You look pathetic like that." Goku blinked and looked up at Vegeta, lips twitching in amusement. He grabbed the towel and rubbed it over his head.
"Thanks, sorry," he said. Vegeta crossed his arms.
"There's really something wrong with you," he said. Goku paused and threw on the shirt. He stood to his feet, running the towel over his head again and looked at Vegeta before walking towards him. Vegeta stiffened, but did not move, as the saiyan stopped directly in front of him. The white towel slipped over Goku's hair, settling around his neck, as he leaned over and pressed his lips to Vegeta's. Vegeta waited, but Goku made no move seeking entrance or further reaction. He slowly pulled away, and touched Vegeta's cheek. The prince growled.
"Are you done yet?" he asked bitterly. "I can feel the woman approaching." Goku straightened, retracting his hand and turning away, throwing the towel off on the bed. Vegeta tried to ignore the heat of his cheek where Goku's fingers had once been.
A few minutes later, Vegeta could hear Bulma enter the house, the clicking of her heels and rustling of her bags echoing through the house. It didn't take her long to seek out Goku, and she entered the room after a single knock.
"Goku!" she exclaimed upon seeing him sitting, clothed, on the bed. "You should be resting! And," she paused, looking around, "where are the bed sheets?"
"I stuck them in the washing device," Vegeta interjected. Bulma's head swiveled and she raised her eyebrows upon noticing him in the room.
"Really? Why?" she asked. Vegeta rolled his eyes.
"Because they were disgusting," he scoffed. "Not to mention the smell of blood and sweat was nauseating." Bulma looked skeptical but shrugged it off.
"Alright. But still, Goku, are you sure you're alright? I still wanted to run a couple of tests on you, just to make sure everything was alright." Goku smiled lopsidedly.
"It's fine. I'm feeling better than before, actually. A bit tired, and hungry, but it'll pass." As if on cue, the saiyan's stomach rumbled. Bulma smiled.
"Well, if you're hungry, that's a good sign that you're getting better. Still, could I run a checkup?" Goku shook his head.
"Not today. Chichi is probably worried sick already anyways. Especially since I haven't contacted her in a while. Maybe the day after tomorrow would work?" he said. Bulma seemed like she was about to protest, but finally relented and nodded.
"Alright, that'll work. But promise me you won't get into any fights before then, alright?" She turned to glare at Vegeta. "That means you leave him alone for a few days, got it?" Vegeta huffed and looked away.
"I'm sure I can deal with the gravity room for a few days, thanks," he growled. She smiled, satisfied, and turned back to Goku.
Goku smiled."Agreed." The saiyan placed two fingers to his forehead. He glanced up at Bulma. "Well…" he paused, "I'll see you around." Vegeta watched as the saiyan began to flicker, and right before disappearing, Goku's eyes flit to his. He smiled, and was gone.
Vegeta panted, chest heaving, as he struggled through the last set of pushups. The gravity room hummed with the strain of the excess gravity force, pressing against every crack and groove in the ground. Finally, the saiyan turned off the machine, watching the red numbers on the dial descend from five hundred to zero in a matter of seconds. He sighed, grabbing his towel and flinging it over his bare shoulders. Clothed only in a pair of workout shorts, he trotted out of the gravity room, shutting the door behind him, and walked out into the grass barefooted. A few feet away, he noticed Bulma sitting in a recliner, a book in hand. She glanced up when she saw him, sliding the tinted sunglasses off her face.
"Hey, what are you doing out of there so early?" she asked.
"I didn't know I had a particular curfew," he replied dryly. The woman shrugged.
"Not really, but you usually spend the entire day in there. It's hardly been five hours. Speaking of which," she glanced at her watch, "I was thinking we call Goku. He agreed to have his checkup today, so he'd better not back out. I can't count on him to call me, forgetful as that man is." Vegeta grunted. He hadn't heard from the saiyan since he'd left the day before. This was normal, of course, but oddly enough, he couldn't feel the man's presence at all, either, ever since he'd left. If he was at his wife's house, he couldn't be that far away, though even the day they had fought, Vegeta had noticed Goku's presence to be weak. It was off-putting.
He followed Bulma into the house, rummaging through the refrigerator and pulling out a bottle of water, which he emptied in several gulps.
"Hello? Chichi? It's Bulma." Vegeta listened half-heartedly to Bulma's voice as she asked told Chichi about Goku's checkup. Obviously he hadn't bothered to tell her. That or he'd forgotten. Both were just as likely, knowing him. Suddenly, Bulma went quiet. Vegeta glanced over to see her standing stock still in front of the landline phone.
"Oh," she finally said in a voice that sounded all too off. "I see. We'll be there immediately. I… see you." She hung up. Vegeta waited expectantly, disliking the quiet and tense atmosphere.
"What is it?" he asked impatiently. Bulma turned away and disappeared through the house, returning with Trunks in her arms. She walked out of the house, motioning for him to follow.
"We're going to Goku's house," she said placidly. Vegeta growled, grabbing his shirt from off the couch in the living room, and hurried after her.
"Why? What the hell is going on?" he demanded. Bulma ignored his question.
"You'll see," she said simply, fumbling for her keys with one hand. They slipped from between her trembling fingers and fell to the ground. Vegeta huffed impatiently and slung an arm around her waist.
"Look, it'll be quicker if we fly there," he stated. Surprisingly Bulma nodded and latched one arm around his neck, clutching Trunks to her chest. Vegeta pushed off the ground and launched himself towards Goku's household. As they flew through the air, he could feel Bulma's tears trailing down his collarbone.
As they approached, Vegeta was immediately aware of a large crowd that had gathered at Goku's house. Several of the self proclaimed Z fighters were there, as well as Goku's brat and his wife. Vegeta couldn't sense Goku at all.
Vegeta slowly descended onto the grass in front of the quaint Son household. His suspicions were confirmed when he noticed Krillin, Tien, Chaotzu, Piccolo, Yamcha, and Master Roshi gathered around the entrance of the house. Only Piccolo, who stood a few feet apart from the others, greeted Vegeta and Bulma with a tense nod, his face grimly set. Vegeta followed Bulma towards the house, a cold, and foreboding feeling pulling at his gut. Finally, he managed to shove through the still crowd, and peered into the dark house.
What he saw inside caused his entire body to grow cold.
Goku – gentle, carefree, limitless Goku – lay on a white cot on the floor, his body still and pale, a soft smile on his lips. Chichi crouched over him, black hair undone over her shoulders and eyes puffy with tears. The huge Ox King rubbed her back with a hand, glancing sorrowfully at the corpse of his son-in-law. Gohan sobbed on the other side of Goku's body, his shivering back turned towards the others. Vegeta felt Bulma tense beside him as she clutched their sleeping child tighter into her arms.
"Ka…karott," he stuttered in shock. It was impossible. Goku was dead. The formidable, undefeatable, prideless buffoon was dead. Gone. The sight of his lifeless corpse was almost surreal. He seemed so at peace, he could almost be mistaken for being asleep. His body lay unmoving, oblivious to the melancholy atmosphere and echoing sobs. But he wasn't. Bulma shuddered against him, tears flowing freely down her face, and for a fleeting second, Vegeta wished he could cry.
Vegeta soared through the air, ignoring the call goodbye from Bulma, who stood on the pale grass and watched him go with round eyes, cradling the young child Trunks in her arms. His son. He pushed the thought away and launched himself in the direction where he sensed an abnormal disorder in the usual peace of the earth. The feeling of destruction and death grew heavier as he approached a city wrought in flames and black smoke. The saiyan prince glanced around, searching for the high power level that could be causing such damage, but there was none, only the lives of hundreds of people that flickered and vanished beneath the rubble.
A huge bolt of energy caught his attention, and he jerked his head to the left in time to see a building explode into rubble as a beam of concentrated blue energy hit it with full force. Vegeta growled and lauched himself in the direction he had seen the attack come from.
He landed on the top of a nearby building and peered down into the city. Rubble and corpses filled the streets. Bloodied survivors screeched and fled the area, clutching on to their sparse belongings, or entirely flinging them away as they scattered like insects. A gas station nearby burst, setting an entire block ablaze. The sirens of multiple firetrucks and police cars wailed in the distance, the sheer amount of rubble prevented them from approaching. Vegeta slowly looked around, seeking out the perpetrator. The first challenger.
Finally, he noticed two figures out on the streets, standing still and nonchalant rather than fleeing with the others. Vegeta tensed as he watched one of the figures raise a hand and send a beam of energy hightailing through the building he stood on. The edifice groaned and swayed, threatening to topple forward before being jerked back by another attack from the attackers, and falling on its back to collide with a large tower behind it. Vegeta leapt off the building before it crashed, hovering momentarily before dropping down to the ground and landing directly in front of the attackers. As they turned to face him, Vegeta allowed himself a good look.
The new challengers consisted of a young man and woman of similar age, with a similar, slender body build and almost identical features, including a sharp face and cold, empty blue eyes. The only differences were their clothes and hair color, the boy sporting short cropped hair of a hard black, while the woman's shone blond. They regarded Vegeta curiously but unimpressed. The most unnerving feature, however, was that Vegeta could sense neither of their presences or power levels. The prince smirked.
"What's this? Do we have a band of children amusing themselves by blowing up cities? Is this some new form of entertainment or something?" Despite their invisible power levels, Vegeta wasn't impressed by what he'd seen so far in terms of attack capabilities and physical appearance. If all went well, this would be over within minutes. The twins regarded each other momentarily. The fair haired one shrugged. The boy turned back to Vegeta with a cold, twisted smile.
"We're new to the area, so we are enjoying ourselves. Are you part of the police force or something?"
Vegeta snorted. "No, I'm not. But if you're going to make it a habit to destroy things around here, I hope you're ready to face me first." The dark haired boy raised his eyebrows, smile widening in amusement.
"Is that so? Well, let's see what you have." The boy wagged a finger tauntingly. The blond behind him rolled her eyes.
"Seventeen, can we please hurry up here? Everyone's dead and it's boring." The young man turned to her with a grin.
"Oh come on, Eighteen, relax. This guy sounds like fun! I mean, he flew here, so he can't be as pathetic as those other idiots, right?" The girl named Eighteen huffed impatiently.
"So he can fly. That really doesn't say anything. I'm still bored."
Seventeen growled under his breath. "Well fine then. If you're so damn bored, why don't you amuse yourself with him? When it's over we'll go to some other city, alright?" The girl narrowed her eyes before shrugging her shoulders and stepping forward.
"Fine, but you'd better not blow up all the clothing stores before I get something better to wear. I swear this outfit makes me look fat."
As the strangely named twins bantered back and forth, Vegeta felt his anger surfacing, insulted by their nonchalant and arrogant behavior. He snarled and shot towards the girl.
"Stop ignoring me!" he screamed, aiming a punch at her face. Before he could register what had happened, the girl disappeared from in front of him, only to reappear to his left and send a fist into his ribs. Vegeta was sent flying into the rubble of the collapsed building. He winced, and vaguely heard the girl sigh and say something to the boy. Vegeta growled, raising his power level and shooting out of the rubble at the girl. She turned around, surprised by his retaliation, but easily dodged his attack, aiming a kick at his knees. Vegeta tucked his legs beneath him, flipping over and landing a few feet away before sending several bolts of energy in her direction. Eighteen dodged them with ease and retaliated with her own, which Vegeta deflected with his hand and sent back towards her. The blasts fell short, surrounding her in dust and bits of rubble, which Vegeta used to his advantage to slip behind her and land a kick to the back of her head.
The girl grinned. Vegeta bit back a gasp, leaping away with a snarl. The hit had done nothing. He'd hit her with everything he had, and she hadn't budged. The saiyan growled angrily, clenching a fist. These twins were much tougher than he'd thought.
For a second, his thoughts returned to Goku. He shook his head angrily. The saiyan was dead. Not that he wanted his help. Though, maybe, if he had attained the powers of a super saiyan, he could have defeating these pesky teenagers.
But that hope was lost.
"Well, I'll give him some credit. He managed to get a hit in," Eighteen noted, raking a hand through her hair. Her twin smirked.
"You're getting slow. He's easy stuff, Eighteen. There should be no problem here."
The girl shot him an angry look. "I'm not slow. I'm just trying to enjoy this, because so far, this day has been rather dull, if you ask me. At least this guy can fight back. The others just run away."
"Fine, then," the boy said, shrugging. "Enjoy yourself. But the sun is setting and I want us to be able to settle down before nightfall. We still have to find this 'Goku' guy." Vegeta twitched, staring. Why had these people mentioned Goku.
"What business do you have with Kakkarot?" he spat. The young man and woman looked at him.
"Kakkarot? We don't know a Kakkarot," Eighteen said.
"If you'd rather call him Goku, so be it. Why are you looking for him?" He demanded. Seventeen smiled coldly.
"We were ordered to kill him," he replied. Vegeta's breath hitched.
"Ordered? So there's someone behind all this?" he snarled. Eighteen flicked a hair behind her ear.
"Used to be. We killed him though," she replied calmly. Vegeta stared.
"What? Then why are you still looking for him?" he asked impatiently.
"Because we heard he was the strongest guy on the planet. If he's that strong, maybe he could be a fun challenge. Looking for him is too difficult, so we thought we could lure him out like this."
Vegeta hissed. "Well that's too bad because Kakkarot died six months ago." The twins blinked, and glanced at each other. A small frown drew itself on Seventeen's face. Eighteen laughed.
"Well, that's too bad then, Seventeen. Looks like you won't get your challenge."
Seventeen growled. "You were the one complaining about being bored," he stated. Eighteen shrugged.
"I, for one, can amuse myself without pummeling in some airheaded muscleman. Besides, he couldn't have been that strong if he's already dead." Vegeta snarled, suddenly angry.
"You don't know anything!" he screeched, lunging forward. The saiyan threw a series of punches and kicks, screaming in frustration as the blond blocked every attack. He aimed a blow at her head only to have her slip away and punch him in the gut. The saiyan coughed, unable to dodge the kick to his chest which sent him flying upwards. He sailed aimlessly, eyes blurred, until Eighteen reappeared behind him, raised her clasped hands over her head, and slammed them down on Vegeta's head. The saiyan prince fell to the ground like a dead weight, crashing into the cement with a burst of dust and rubble. Vegeta lay helplessly on the ground, coughing and hacking out the blood in his mouth. He looked up through hazy eyes at the two approaching figures. The sound of wailing sirens and a roaring fire thrummed numbly through his ears. The voices of the twins sounded blurred and far away.
"End this, Eighteen. We don't have all day, and the guy's practically dead anyways. He's no more fun."
"Alright. You'd better let me take my time shopping though, for taking care of your dirty work."
"Fine, just finish this up. We'll let the police clean up our mess."
Vegeta twitched. He couldn't die. Not yet. Not like this. He hadn't even attained the status of Super Saiyan yet. He couldn't die.
He could no longer hear Seventeen and Eighteen. Vegeta closed his eyes, taking in a ragged breath. Kakkarot.
Would he see him? The saiyan almost smiled.
No. It was likely Goku would be… in a much better place then where he was headed. It was only right, after all.
Still, he wished he could see the saiyan again, even if he had been an idiot. Vegeta felt a surge of sudden pain jolt though his body. He gasped, and exhaled as the pain numbed away to nothing and everything went dark.