~ discalimer: sadly, I do not own any of the Dragonball trilogy and I never will... writing the disclaimer is pointless and it just reminds me of what I will never own *otherwise I'd be rich with muscley men strutting around :P*
~A/N: Happy Fathers Day, peoples! I was planning on releasing this one-shot after my 130 Days was complete but, seeing as I'm busy for the next week and it is Fathers Day, now seems like the best possible time. This was my first story I wrote :D so please don't hurt my nostalgia...
~R&R please x I love reviews :)
Bra watched her older brother, playing with Goten with wide eyes. Her eyes were glued to the both of them, though that didn't slow down the pace of scoffing the 10 cheese toasties into her mouth.
"Hey Goten, wanna spar?"
"Hey Goten, wanna spar?"
"Oh, not again…"
"Oh, not again…"
The purple haired youth smirked cunningly at him, knowing his closest friend would copy everything he says…
"GOTEN IS A BRAINLESS MORON WHO LIKES IT UP THE REAR!"
"GOTEN IS A BRAINLESS MORON WHO LIKES IT UP THE…- What? Trunks, that's not fair!"
Trunks was too busy rolling on the floor to notice any whines coming from the fuming Goten. Indeed, he continued laughing as said fuming Goten pounced on him and tried to pummel him.
Bulma calmly and gently put down the razor sharp kitchen knife in her hand before she whirled round at the counter, turning her back on the lunch she was preparing. "Boys! Cut it out, you're nineteen, not five! For goodness sake, I hoped that lunch would have calmed you both down, but noooo-"
"Alright, alright, we'll go outside. C'mon Goten."
The two adolescents ambled through the kitchen door, shoving each other to the side as they half raced each other to the front door, whilst Vegeta, shirtless as usual after his training, slipped in through the back and sat at the table. He was thankful of his good timing as he watched the boys practically leapfrog themselves outside.
"Before you demand your lunch, I'm just finishing it off." She turned and smiled at him. Vegeta managed a few precious seconds watching hi wife from behind, his mind momentarily off food.
Suddenly, a little voice piped up. "Mama, Goten likes what up the rear?"
Vegeta scoffed and stared wide eyed at the blue haired Bulma-mini-me opposite him. She had a huge quizzical smile on her little face. There was something about the little girl that just screamed cuteness, deafening to Vegeta. His lips opened but no sound came out.
Without missing a beat, Bulma half looked over her shoulder at her husband. "His car, sweetie. Goten likes to park his car behind his house. To protect it from the wind."
Bulma raised her eyebrows in Vegeta's direction as she stated this, quickly with a very firm but kind 'end of subject' tone. Vegeta would have just blurted out the totally inappropriate thing (how else did Trunks discover 'the birds and bees'? Trunks had never mentioned the F-word until after their little chat…)
This was the precise reason why Bulma stared at him with the plate held between them. The twenty something toasties would only land in front of him when he confirmed the answer….
Narrowing his eyes, Vegeta answered with a gruff voice. "Yes. His car." He muttered, before tucking in.
A few seconds later, he heard an equally low voice mutter, "…His car."
Vegeta polished off his plate and leant back. Those toasties had not satisfied his hunger. Rather it took the edge off. At least his lunch actually tasted nice. The woman had finally taken to cooking rather well (she had to! A full-grown Saiyan and two growing hybrids show no mercy when they are hungry). It had taken around twenty years, but she could finally dish up some nice food.
He sniffed the air, frowning. Burning was mingled with the delicious cheesy smells. "Second attempt?"
"Hehem. Yes." Bulma looked forlorn as she poured herself a coffee. She hadn't burnt anything for days, and now she managed to burn a simple toastie! Still, she had thrown it into the bin before taking a deep breath before picking up another slice of bread and continuing like it never happened.
"Your second attempt was worth it, then. Much better."
Bra looked a little pink in the cheeks as her father glared at her, feeling smaller and smaller as the back of her feet swung underneath her chair. His narrowed eyes were wearing the typical 'I'm not pleased' (understatement!)look he always wore. But Bulma was relived when there was no malice, or anger, or frustration in them. Nor was there any in his voice.
"What are you doing, girl?"
"What are you doing, girl?"
"Do not mock me- answer me!"
"Do not mock me- answer me!"
Vegeta let out a small growl. Bra retorted with an equally pissed of growl that made Bulma shudder. No one could deny it- Bra was defiantly Vegeta's daughter. Not even Trunks could imitate that growl as well as his little sister.
Vegeta, however, didn't stay on the same thought for long. "What is she doing, woman?"
"What is she doing, woman?"
Bulma hesitated. Words like mocking, teasing, playing or annoying was not going to help the matter. "Copying you." She smiled, "Pretending to be you." She paused before continuing. "I notice it's only you she's copying!"
Vegeta had yet to take his eyes off the little girl, but smirked as he realised that she wanted- no aspired- to be like him. And she too could push the right buttons to piss off Bulma. All she needed was some…guidance.
So slowly, he raised a hand and put it back down, only for it to be mimicked by her. He waved his other hand, then leant on his elbows and put his chin on his hands. He didn't blink, nor did she. Both were watching each other like hawks, a perfect mirror image. Their stares were so intense Bulma felt like she had to look away before the room caved in or something.
Vegeta pointed to his wife and simply said, "Woman." Bra, as expected, did the exact same thing.
"Vegeta! You jerk- now she'll start calling me that! I get enough of that from you, thank you very much."
He wasn't listening. He merely chuckled as he abruptly stood up, the chair scraping lightly. He stalked silently through the back door and into the garden. Bulma's anger faded when she saw little Bra following, trying so hard to stalk like her daddy when he moved so quickly. She was simply adorable. And Vegeta, well, she had married him many years ago but never once regretted it, nor did he. That alone said more than anything else could.
This is why she smiled at the spectacle outside and leant against the counter. As the blue haired woman watched the Prince and the Princess though the kitchen window, her heart was swelling from pure bliss and love.
Vegeta walked to the middle of the garden and surreptitiously glanced over his shoulder. Bra had finally caught up to him and stood beside him, panting slightly and waiting for his next move. Still silent, he took his trainers off and stood barefoot on the grass. Next to him, little purple court shoes were swiftly tossed aside for now.
He had turned to face her now and noticed that her arms were crossed tightly across her chest. Looking down at his own chest, he had realised he was doing so himself. He regarded the concentration on her face and contemplated his next move. He levitated just a few inches off the ground, his toes lazily hanging above the grass, and effortlessly landed about a metre away. He waited.
Wide eyed, Bra panicked. She couldn't fly yet! She had tried before several times, but her parents told her it takes time. Why couldn't she fly yet? Why?
Vegeta was still waiting. Balling her fists, she wasn't about to give up yet! In her stance, she jumped, leapt and soared into the air and landed next to her father. Both know it wasn't flying, just a jump. Both weren't gong to admit it.
Sparing a quick nod at his daughter, Vegeta turned to his right and crouched into a defensive pose. So did Bra. He gracefully moved into another pose as he followed his basic kata. So did Bra. He made a quick punch at the air. As you guessed, so did Bra.
Bulma stood there for close to half an hour just watching them. When her feet started to ache, she jumped up and sat on the edge of the counter but never strayed her eyes from the stern looking man and the bobbing little girl.
Bulma had at one point realised what her daughter was wearing when a slight smudge of dirt was smeared across her back from falling. A white tank top, dark blue shorts and little white socks.
From the distant kitchen window, it looked for the entire world like she was wearing a variation of Saiyan armour, just like her father had once worn day in, day out many years ago. Bulma could decide if seeing a five-year old hybrid, with a temper to match both her mothers and her fathers, was a welcome sight or not. As she could hear Trunks yelling goodbye to Goten, she finally turned to continue some work upstairs. She was smiling the whole time.
Bra sniffed back a few tears as she rubbed her knee. The skin was scraped but there wasn't any blood. It was one of those grazes that burned.
"We can stop if you so wish. Your mother will dress that for you." Vegeta stared down at her and made no other move apart from uncrossing his arms and holding out a massive hand. "Just don't cry, child."
Bra looked at his hand before grabbing it and jumping up. "No! I wanna continue, Papa…err, I mean, Don't cry, child."
Vegeta nodded to her and moved back into a tall strong pose, fists poised in front of his wide muscular chest. He was about the throw out a few deadly punches into an invisible face.
Instead, he leant down and patted her back. "Keep you back straight, remember?"
"Back straight… back straight." With that, she took a deep breath in…. and punched the air, making any enemy wince in agony from wherever her eye height is (particularly the men). Vegeta, obviously, had rarely felt so proud.
Bulma was lounging on the bed reading Beauty and the Beast. It was short and easy to read-perfect for after a days work. Smiling, her mind drifted from the pages as she remembered this had been one of her favourite books since childhood, and was very tatty and worn out over the years, but it was always on her bookshelf of romance novels, sci-fi thrillers and techno-gabble-how-to books that only she and its author could understand. She can remember when she was young, and wore princess costumes out in public, had imaginary tea out of plastic cups and read this book over and over again. She would insist to everybody, even perfect strangers, that one day it would happen to her, a fowl prince would eventually shed his disgusting mask only for her. She laughed as the memory rolled through her thoughts. Maybe she was right- that in some twisted and complicated way it really did happen to her, not exactly how she imagined, but still. The outcome was similar enough. Not that it would make a bit of difference, after all that had happened, she wouldn't have it any other way.
Footsteps on the stairs brought her back. The lighting of the room was golden thanks to the warm, stunning sunset as she stood up and smoothed out her dress. In the middle of summer, it was still very warm and the sky was bright, but it was now evening and she was planning on ordering a pizza, or twenty.
Bulma didn't make it past her bedroom door though. Vegeta was now walking down the hall towards Bra's room. In one hand swung their shoes, his other hand supporting the sleeping child against his chest. He glanced at Bulma and raised a spare finger to his lips before slipping into the pink and yellow nursery, where toys lie abundant like overgrown flowers. Truthfully, he hated the colours, and the lack of floor space, and the general feeling this room generated. Especially those caricatured animals with glass eyes scrutinising him all the time. But it didn't matter that much. He'd avoid being in the room for any long amounts of time and was relieved when he gently tucked his daughter into her soft bed. She barely stirred and he could've easily left the room without the fear of hearing a little "Papa? Don't go…"
But he lingered there and watched her for a while. Her brilliant blue hair spilled out onto the massive pillow and her chin was tucked under the covers where a Mulan doll was protruding out of the top. Now she looked so calm and… innocent. Innocence. Something Vegeta will never experience...there was always something there that meant he could never completely turn over a new leaf. But at least there was a new leaf. A clean, fresh, beautiful new leaf.
Vegeta watched her deep breathing for all of eight seconds then effortlessly tread in silence out of her room. He made sure to shut the door completely (and agonisingly slowly) before responding to the beaming woman.
"No wonder she's so tired. I'd thought she'd never stop. So…Enjoyed your shadow today?" There was defiantly a smug tone there.
"She had perseverance beyond her years. She shows potential, I doubt it'll be much longer before she can fly." His stomach grumbled loudly, signalling to Bulma to hurry up with ordering food. As the woman marched off in search of a menu, Vegeta thought of what Bulma had called their daughter.
"…my shadow…" for some reason, this made him smile. Not a typical Vegeta smirk- a true smile.