DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, or Dragon Ball GT. This is a fan fiction, based off the movie and show, but twisted to fit the plot of my own evil genius. MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! *cough*

The Alternate Future: Goten's Story

Background: "Why Can't" Trilogy has more than Rikku's story to tell in a future where Rikku was victimized by the radical virus. She not only died, but left her lover Vegeta, and their newborn son to chance the world without her.

For those who don't know: Goku/Kakarott = Rikku/Karat

If there is any more confusion don't hesitate to send me a message through review or e-mail.

Chapter 1: How it started

Time, it seemed like her entire life was centered on it. Bulma didn't know how things had come to pass or who the hell decided who suffered and who rejoiced, but to her it was all a lot of bull crap.

It was she who had stopped praying for a miracle and decided to do something about it. She'd lived too long with unspeakable dangers, end of the worlds, and phenomenal powers to believe that one distant force controlled everything

For now the androids were defeated, and everyone's lives were back on course. At what costs though? How many lives had suffered since Rikku's death 20 some odd years ago? How many lives had changed, for the worse? What little survivors on the planet were left, were picking up the pieces of a world left behind.

God, it'd been so long, and yet it still felt like yesterday…

~20 years previously~

"I'm pregnant!" Bulma said her eyes hopeful and teary. "I know, I know what you're going to say. You're no longer my woman, it's your kid, your problem, but I'm having it anyway!"

Stunned speechless Vegeta backed away from her as if she had grown another head. This couldn't be happening. This wasn't how it was supposed to work. Bulma lifted her teary, angry eyes and let out an aggravated sigh. "I'm not stupid Vegeta." She finally spoke again after a long brief of silence. "I know about you and Rikku, and that our time together was a momentary fling. This is just, I needed to tell you, and so I did. Now you need to do the right thing and tell Rikku, before I do it myself.

His destined mate, Karat or Rikku as her friends called her, was a woman he had come to respect and accept as his. She had all but shoved him out of her life after the defeat of Frieza. For almost two years he waited, pondered, and searched for her. When finally they had seen each other after so long did she come to him, no, but instead cradled her son, rejoiced with friends, and showed off those stupid super Saiyan powers she was so proud of.

As a result, he had distanced himself, training in the gravity room made for him. He worked day and night pushing his body to the limits. Then, to make matters even worse, he gave in on a moment's lust. The blue haired woman, Bulma, a puddle of tears, smelling sinly, and clinging to him, was another open door, one he chose to explore, and one he painfully regretted.

What the hell was he supposed to say to Karat? I couldn't wait? I was weak? It serves you right for making me wait in the first place? He pondered that last phrase as he stepped up to the little home in Mt. Paos

His Karat was outside with her boy Gohan. The half-breed mishap of her past, and currently the most treasured person. He knew Karat loved him, wanted him, and was as far lost in those feelings for him as he was with his feelings. Hadn't they shared that blissful nigt together? After a month apart he finally caved and found her, waiting, and smiling for him.

Never the less, this boy was something he could never break her from. Children were a part of a person, their legacy, and now he was about to have one of his own, but with a woman he didn't love.


At Vegeta's tone of voice, Rikku sent Gohan inside for homework and turned to her lover. She took a long careful study of his face and pulled his hand to her cheek rubbing against it. "You don't need to explain, Vegeta."

He guessed he shouldn't be surprised. It was so like her to find things out on her own. "I don't know what to feel." He admitted, showing only his weakness to her. "I feel disconnected, angry, and yet somehow, stupidly I feel proud of myself."

"It's your first born child," she smiled brightly at him her eyes glittering with tears. "It's the most wonderful feeling in the world. You'll see."

She shouldn't be jealous. Rikku told herself over and over that Bulma deserved to have a child of her own. Bulma was a wonderful friend, wise, caring, and always so vivacious and curious. Her love of science, her love of life, and just everything about her made her someone Rikku was proud to call friend.

Jealousy, greed, and anger are all little monsters sitting on your shoulder, she told herself. They had no business being there, but they were anyway. Sitting in the hospital room she fidgeted, unable to sit still. Vegeta had refused to come unless she was there with him, and like a good friend Rikku grit her teeth and went along.

Why did they have to deliver babies in a hospital? She gave birth to Gohan at home didn't she? Why did Bulma insist to have all these doctors, all these sick people, and all these needles around?

"Karat," she heard Vegeta's voice break her thoughts and she smiled. "Are you alright, you look pale."

She was lucky she wasn't green. She absolutely hated hospitals. They smelled funny, they were noisy, crowded, and scary! "I'm fine." She insisted.

~3rd Person~

She didn't look fine. Dark circles had formed under her eyes initiating that she hadn't been sleeping well. Her hands were cool to the touch, but she was sweaty along the temple. "This is probably a stupid question to ask you, but have you been eating well?"

"Of course, I always eat well, I'm just not good with hospitals Vegeta. Trust me, I'm alright. You need to worry more about Bulma. Your son is about to be born after all."

Before he could say anything a doctor came from Bulma's room his smile bright and happy, and his hands wiped clean on a towel. "Vegeta, and Rikku, Ms. Briefs would like to see you both."

Not needing to be told twice Rikku pried herself from Vegeta's protective hold and jogged into the little room. She looked at Bulma upright on the bed, her long hair pulled back in a ponytail, sweat dripping down her face and on the hospital gown she wore. In her arms she carried a crying baby boy wrapped in a blue cloth, a little stubble of purple hair on his head. "Oh Bulma, he's adorable!"

Vegeta grunted from behind her announcing his presence. Rikku rolled her eyes and pushed Vegeta closer to the bedside. Bulma smiled up at him and offered the boy to hold. Vegeta hesitated. The baby wriggled as he stared up with those bright blue eyes. Those blue eyes that came from his mother framed by the baby's face, a face he inherited from him. "What is his name?"

"What?" Bulma looked shocked by the question. Vegeta took the baby cradling to his arm and continued to watch him. He grunted.

"Did I stutter woman? What's the name? What's the brat's name?"

Bulma laughed, she couldn't help it. Vegeta looked so cute and flustered holding the babe and trying to keep his tough bravado. "His name is Trunks."

"Trunks, my son," he glanced at Rikku who giggled in reaction. "Ah, I'm no good at this, take him back." He pushed the babe back at Bulma making him cry. Vegeta turned his back hiding the blush on his cheek. He heard the laughter of both women and was glad no one else was here to see this.

"Hello!" Dr. Briefs shouted with an arm full of flowers and candy. "How's the new mother?"

"Dad, do you mind, this is a hospital, you're supposed to be quiet."

"How can I be quiet? My daughter just had a baby." He looks around the room and suddenly quieted himself. "Oh, I see, I didn't realize Rikku was taking a nap."

"What?" Vegeta whirled and saw Rikku collapsed on the floor by Bulma's bed. When had she gotten there? "Karat?" He rushed to her side and lifted her up. She was unconscious. "Karat!"

To Rikku it was all a blur. She had remembered laughing full healthy belly laughs with Bulma, and then suddenly couldn't find the energy to remain standing. The next conscious moment she remembered was waking up in a hospital bed, a rough calloused hand clenched in one of her hands, and a cold smooth one taking her vitals.

"What happened?"

"What the hell do you mean what happened? You passed out." Vegeta said, not so much as yelling, as speaking with an aggressive tone. He had been worried. " You're fine, my carcass! Why are you sick?"

"She's not sick, Mr. Vegeta." The doctor said smiling. "As I was trying to tell you before, all her signs are good, she's just exhausted, probably from the pregnancy."

"Why would Bulma's pregnancy affect me?" She looked to Vegeta, who had caught on before she did. "Oh… OH! VEGETA!" She was up like a shot and her arms were encircled around her lover's. "I'm pregnant!"

For the second time of his life, Vegeta found himself at a loss for words. He held his mate as she cried and laughed. She was so happy. He took the kiss she offered, and finally let the news sink in. His mate was pregnant, it would be THEIR first child together. He slipped his hand to cup her belly and forgot all about the blue haired woman in the next room.

For months things seemed so content. Rikku grew rounder, happier, and more in love with the child with every waking second. Bulma and little Trunks visited often, and the three women, herself Chichi, and Bulma, all made clucking noises over baby names, clothes, whether it would be a girl or a boy, and what not. Vegeta in the meantime was left to babysit with Trunks, and left to listen.

He didn't mind, much, for it was expected from the Earth women. In fact after living at Capsule Corps for so long he was becoming accustomed to it. It almost frightened him.

Rikku helped Chichi wash dishes by drying them and setting them aside for Bulma to put away. She ate like a cow, but she'd learned at an early age that she couldn't let Chichi handle all the work. The baby in her womb danced and she nearly dropped the plate. She stroked her belly and smiled. "He's kicking."

"Oh!" Chichi dropped a plate to bend and touch. "Oh how wonderful Rikku, your second child! Oh I could just cry!" Chichi held her apron to her face sniffling. "Can you believe we would be here today? It seems like yesterday we were little girls dreaming of our future, and now we're living it."

"You should find a man now Chichi, you're the next one in line to have kids." Bulma said winking. Chichi blushed and touched her face sighing.

"Oh, I don't know, I'm beginning to feel so old."

"You're sandbagging Chichi. You're young and vibrant just like the rest of us. You'll meet Mr. Right, I'm sure of it!" Rikku said. All three girls had a good laugh, the room filled with happiness and hope for the future.

Then, darkness struck. Rikku gasped and wobbled a little holding her heart and belly. She clutched her heart wheezing and fell to her knees. "Ah!"

"Rikku! What's wrong, what is it?" Chichi knelt beside her stroking her back and touching the hand on her belly. "Is it time?"

"No, no it's my heart… oh it hurts it feels like it's…. AHHHHHH!"

Gohan rushed through the woods his heart in his throat. He had been out catching fish when he felt the sudden tremor in his mother's energy. His feet flew across acres of grass and miles of trees. Oh why had he gone out so far? He had wanted a little quiet from the baby talk, and Vegeta's constant owlish stare, but he should have known better!

He heard a plane overhead and spotted Yamcha, in a plain with the gang from Roshi's island. Things were looking worse. He jumped to the sky, forgetting about people who would spot him flying, and took off at high speed to the house.

Rikku clutched the sheets heaving and sweating badly. Vegeta held her hand tight in his grasp as Chichi pressed a cool cloth to her forehead. "Where the hell is that blasted doctor?"

"He's on his way, Vegeta, don't worry Rikku's strong I'm sure she'll pull through this." Chichi said, more to comfort herself than the growling Saiyan across from her.

"Chichi," Rikku wheezed. "The baby… the baby's upset it's moving a lot, and I think he wants to come out."

"To make matters worse… oh thank god!" Chichi said as Krillen runs in with the doctor behind him.

"We got here as fast as we could. How is she?" Krillen said looming over Chichi's shoulder to look at Rikku. His stomach clenched at the pain stricken look on her face. "Hold on Rikku, you've got to hang on."

"Now, now," the doctor tried to calm everyone. "Give this woman some space… I only need one other person in here with me, and that is my patient. Please step outside."

"Not on your life!" Vegeta snarled. "I will not leave my mate lying in a bed alone! I stay with her!"

"Vegeta," Rikku choked out and squeezed his hand. "Gohan, find Gohan, bring him here, hurry, please you're the fastest one here."

Vegeta opened his mouth to retort but he saw the look in his lover's eyes and he nodded. "I'll be back soon, please stay alive." He kissed her forehead and rushed out. Rikku felt his energy go super as he sprinted off to find her son.

An hour passed, and the doctor came out wringing his hands together. Chichi and Krillen stood anxious, and the sound of a plane is heard overhead. Soon after, the room was filled with Rikku's friends. Vegeta and Gohan burst through the door and pushed their way to the front. "My mother, is she…"

"I'm afraid your mother is dying. She's caught a virus that is attacking her heart, and there's not much I can do about that. To make matters worse she's reaching final stages in labor, and I don't think she'll survive the birthing.

The thud of his knees hitting the ground was nothing compared to the shattering of Vegeta's heart. He bowed his head gripping the carpet under his bare fingernails. "No, anything but that, I'll accept anything, but death!"

Chichi and Bulma both burst into tears and all around sad faces were exchanged. The doctor swallowed hard and turned back to the room. "I can save the baby, but it'll require Rikku to go through manual labor. I can't even offer her a morphine to stop the pain."

"I'll do it!" The croaky sound of Rikku's voice from the room silenced the sobs. The doctor pushed the door further open and Rikku's face, pale, and sickly looked at her family and friends with a smile. "I wanna give my baby life."


The echoing screams pounded in Vegeta's ears, even from the outside. He couldn't stand to be in the same room, so he kept Gohan company in the liivngroom. Both men had their heads hung and their ears plugged by their hands.

Outside, the rest of the Z members could only stand and wait. Those who could, kept a lingering watch on Rikku's life force. She was fading fast.

"You can do it Rikku!" Chichi coached patting her forehead. "push through it!" tears and sobs escaped through the coaching, but Rikku took comfort in knowing Chichi was pushing back all fear to help her. Her heart felt like it was exploding, and her energy was fading fast.

"That's it Rikku, one more push!" The doctor persuaded and proceeded to turn the baby upright as Rikku pushed him out in one more fluid stroke. The cry of a baby joined Rikku's screams, and suddenly the dark omen that had filled her heart, disappeared. She collapsed back on the bed, trembling and smiling as she listened to the beautiful cries of her baby.

Chichi cradled the boy, showing Rikku. "It's a boy, it's a beautiful baby boy Rikku." Through half opened eyes Rikku looked at the crying babe and reached out with a trembling hand to stroke the face. "my son… my beautiful baby."

Chichi could see Rikku's body failing. Her face was deathly pale and she struggled to even keep her eyes open. The hand that had touched her son's face fell onto her chest to clutch her heart. The pain was numb now, and Rikku could heard her own failing heart beats. "Goten… his name is Goten."

"She's gone," Krillen said with a trembled voice as he felt the last drop of energy fade from Rikku's body. "Rikku's gone!"

Long Chapter, I know, but I wanted to get it all out before the next chapter begins. So what do you think of the start? Worth waiting for? I hope so because the next chapter will be out soon.

Next CHapter: A future without her