Disclaimer: All characters, names, places etc in Dragonball Z are property of Akira Toriyama

A/N: Sorry I haven't updated in so long. I've been working on two major projects. One is my mega epic fanfiction "Duel of Fates" (which is a DBZ/LOTR/Star Wars crossover -yea really- based on the mythology each story was inspired by e.g. Nordic tales, King Arthur and the Monkey King.) I don't know if I'll be updating this anymore but no worries! Because practically all of this happens in the prequel to "DOF" which is all DBZ and no SW/LOTR.

The other thing I'm busy with is my Ginyu Force RPG. Feel free to join - we're on & you can find the link on my user info. If you fancy reading Duel of Fates the link to the site I host it on is there too - there's just no way I'm posting it up on I've put a lot of work into it but that doesn't matter, it'll still get flamed rolls eyes

Chapter Two
The Elusive Planet of Namek

'Subject showing signs of activity. All Doctors in the vicinity please return to medical base room 402 immediately.'

Even before the computer's monotone voice could finish its alert, the door had hissed open and the stout alien Doctor was trotting towards his patient. He smiled crookedly at the exceptionally good computer readout. Vegeta's Saiyan healing powers combined with the Tank were nothing short of impressive.

His clawed fingers flew across the control panel and the healing tank was quickly drained of the green, restorative liquid-substance.

Vegeta shivered slightly as the cool chill of the medical room came into contact with his dripping wet skin. Slowly, the Saiyan's senses came back to life and the dull hum of the room's machinery drummed in his ears. His eyelids, no longer tired and glued shut with his own crusted blood, flashed open to expose a pair of cunning onyx pools. As he rose to his full height Vegeta found his body aching from sitting in the one place for such an extensive period of time, but Saiyan pride compelled him to shake the numbness off with an arrogant toss of his head.

The good Doctor looked up at the young Prince who was busily scanning the room for some clothing to shield him from the awful chill of this planet. Although Lord Freeza had his choice of literally millions of planets, both warm and tropical, he preferred building his army bases on perilous, cold worlds with hazardous, rocky terrain and dense forests filled with monstrous beasts which could snap a full-grown Saiyan in half with one bite of its massive jaws.

"Vegeta?" the rough, croaky voice infiltrated the Saiyan's hearing, "Ah, I see I finally have your attention now. You are nearly fully healed, my Prince. However, I'm afraid your tail could not be rejuvenated."

"No matter, it'll grow back again." Vegeta grunted as he marched past the beaked Doctor and headed towards a bench where a new set of clothes lay waiting. The super quality rubber armour was invented specially by some of the greatest minds the Galaxy had to offer for the Kold Empire.

As the Saiyan no Ouji began to clothe himself the Doctor inspected the battered and torn armour Vegeta had worn while he had been away 'on vacation'. His expression quickly twisted from curious to practically horrified.

"You must have had a hard time… In my very humble opinion I find it a miracle that you're alive, Vegeta," the Doctor spoke incredulously, "even with your superior strength and this armour those Earthlings managed to defeat both you and Nappa?!" As he waited for a reply he noticed Vegeta was acting unusually distant; shoulders hunched and his regal head bowed deep in thought. The Doctor suddenly realised that he was touching upon a very sensitive subject here, and to prod the matter any further might prove to be a dangerous action. But his curiosity and worry overthrew his logical side and he prodded the Prince a little further, his tone gentle and almost kindly.

"Vegeta, tell me what happened out there? I'd have to be blind not to see that your battle on Earth hasn't hurt your pride." and the words were out before he could close his beak.

The Saiyan Prince turned on him, eyes glowing with such intensity it was as if the raging battle between the half-breed Kakarott and his self were replaying in his shining black orbs.

The good Doctor cowered under that powerful stare, but he did not move an inch. If his fate was at the hands of Vegeta, the Prince of whom he had looked after ever since he was nothing but a powerless child, then he would let fate take its course.

Then, slowly but surely, the burning fire in Prince Vegeta's raging, onyx eyes, fizzled out and taking up an arrogant pose, he spun on his heel so that his back was once again turned on the Doctor.

"Tell me where Freeza is." Vegeta demanded.

"You're not strong enough to worry about Freeza."

Vegeta spat angrily, "I'm not getting enough to do his dirty work! Is he in or not?"

"Now Vegeta you must calm down." The Doctor shook his head and tutted. "You haven't fully recovered and I'd be a fool to release you if you weren't 100 percent-"

"Hah!" the Prince scoffed, "I've never felt better, so get ready for your next patient cos Freeza's going to be checking in!"

The Doctor was fast paced to keep up with the cocky, young Prince as he disappeared through the doorway and marched down the corridor.

"Vegeta, don't be a fool! You can't go-" but his attention was suddenly swayed by flash of light in the corner of the room. When he turned he found Vegeta's scouter lying abandoned on his desktop, its transparent, magenta, surface twinkling beneath the flickering, strip-light. "Wait Vegeta you're forgetting your scouter!" he called desperately.

Halfway down the corridor, a secretive smile tugged on Vegeta's lips.

"Keep it Doc. I won't be needing it."

Ignoring the awkward looks he received from passing soldiers, Vegeta continued down the long, twisting corridors of Lord Freeza's Army Base: No. 79

As his black eyes trailed the ground beneath him, he could feel strength born anew coursing through his veins. It pleased and aggravated him at the same time. Surely this new found power would be enough to defeat Kakarott, but Freeza? Now that was an entirely different challenge all together.

Yes, a challenge, he smirked devilishly, and one I intend to see through 'til the very end.

"Yo! Vegeta! Up here monkey-brains!"

The Saiyan's gleaming dark eyes fell upon a pair of green-booted feet directly before him and as they travelled upwards to find the owner he heard a voice inside his head groan miserably. The one thing he was certainly not in the mood for was Kui's aggravating stupidity.

"Heh, heh! I heard you went through Hell!" the purple-skinned, alien soldier chortled. "I also heard your supposedly invincible comrades died too! What a shame. Heh, heh, heh."

Vegeta tensed at that little reminder. He was now one of only two pure-bred Saiyans in the entire universe.

He shook off the cold chill which had begun to slither up his spine and glared venomously at his rival, "Get the Hell out of my face, Kui. I'm busy."

Vegeta pushed past the taller soldier none too gently, intending on searching out a Starchart so that he may locate the Planet of Namek. But he was halted by Kui's heavy hand as it crashed down on his shoulder.

"I gotta tell ya Vegeta, Lord Freeza ain't too happy that you guys went off on your own without his permission." Kui spoke with a mild note of warning.

"Get your hand off me." Vegeta snarled.

Kui ignored the young Saiyan and continued as if he had never been interrupted, "But Lord Freeza is a generous person. He's going to forgive you seeing as you found something very useful to the Empire's cause."

Kui's words drummed in his ears, echoing in his mind until his head began to spin. Freeza had overhead them on the scouters! He knew of Planet Namek!

He knew of the DragonBalls.

"He…he knows…" Vegeta stuttered in a timid whisper.

Kui slammed a large hand against Vegeta's back, catching him off-guard and nearly throwing him off his feet, "Yep, Lord Freeza was very pleased to learn he would finally be granted eternal life, Veggie-boy. You'll be in his good books for a while, heh, heh, heh!"

Vegeta could only stand in stunned silence as Kui's harsh laughter disappeared along with his foul appearance down the winding corridors.

How could he be so ridiculously idiotic! Freeza had listened to all their conversations through their scouters, he knew everything there was to know about the golden DragonBalls of Namek. The royal tyrant was probably speeding towards the unfortunate planet at that very moment. And if he got his wish, he would become immortal…

Vegeta's blood boiled at the thought of serving that tyrant for the rest of his life. His senses returned and attuned to the dangerous world around him. The Saiyan instantly took off down the winding corridor, dead set on finding the co-ordinates for Planet Namek.

When at last Vegeta had located the Star-chart room, he was startled at the site of an orange-skinned, bushy haired humanoid lounging before a holographic monitor, which currently displayed an excessive number of porn links.

Vegeta knew him of course, as did everybody else. He was a member of a notorious gang of pirates called the Ginyu Force. Composed of five members, the infamous Ginyus worked as the Frozen Shadow's elite forces, spreading devastation wherever they went.

With the amount of horrific stories and rumours, which flew around the base, Vegeta could not help but feel a little intimidated by them as a whole. But alone, each member was nothing but a bumbling fool. And the gangly teen-punk Jeice, who lounged before him, was the worst of all.

Swallowing his Saiyan pride, Vegeta marched towards him.

"Ooh foxy! din-din-din-din...foxy lady!" Vegeta cringed as the young man began howling along to his so-called music. "'ere a am baby! ah'm comin t' get yeh!"

Suddenly sensing a second presence in the room, Jeice whipped off his earphones, which continued to blare heavy rock music, and turned towards the Saiyan Prince with a smirk.

"Hey Veggie-boy. What can ah do yeh for?" he asked in his heavily accented tone.

It took all of Vegeta's will to bow down to the cocky punk before him. It was all so unjust to him that an overconfident fool of a warrior could have so much more power compared to a royal member of the Saiyan race.

"Pardon my intrusion, sir, but I have orders to locate the Planet of Namek on the Starchart."

The young Ginyu elite's emerald eyes widened, "What, you too?! That Pansy-assed bastard Zarbon was in 'ere a week ago. An' ah told him exactly what ah'm gonna tell you. There ain't no friggin' planet Namek!!" Jeice hollered before swinging back to the super computer to continue scanning his collection of porn links.

Vegeta froze. That couldn't be right. Someone must have tampered with the star chart. In his life he had travelled far across the Galaxy with Radditz and Nappa by his side, and he had heard many mysterious tales. The legend of Namek's Golden Dragonballs was one of the most famous fairy tales told across the Galaxy, but no one had thought it to be true. But the planet itself was never a myth. Vegeta knew this for he had encountered tribes of Super Nameks of whom had been banished from their homeworld. There were very few Super Nameks left living amongst the stars, but the ones who did could be found sitting inside smoky taverns, surrounded by a captivated audience as they wove their great tales of myth and magic.

Vegeta had met a few of these curious creatures on his missions, had heard their curious tales of myth and intrigue and when he had heard those words spoken from the Earth dwelling Namek, Piccolo, Vegeta grew ever curious himself...

Namek existed. And so did the Dragonballs.

Meanwhile, the irritated Ginyu Elite was still muttering away to himself. "But did his High an' Mighty Zarbon believe me? Feh! Yeh right! He waltzes off to Teradda to find out more info. Guy walks around like he's got a rubies up his arse."

Vegeta's eyes widened in terror. If Zarbon discovered Namek before he did his plan would be ruined. In a flash the Saiyan Prince was up and out the door, racing along the dimly lit corridor as quick as lightning, flattening any poor unfortunate soul in his path.

By the time he had reached the Ship Hangar in the very bowels of Freeza's station, Vegeta had thrown together a loosely thought out plan in his head. He would travel to Teradda and track down Zarbon. Once he had discovered Freeza's left hand subordinate he would gather whatever information he could from the unsuspecting fool. Then it would be a race to Planet Namek and the prize would be Eternal Life. The plan itself wasn't much to go by, but for the time being it would have to do. He knew that with time and a little patience another opportunity would arise.

Hopping into the first available Space Pod he found, Vegeta set the destination into the navigator for Planet Teradda before blasting off from Freeza Planet No.79. And swearing never to return.

As his heavy music blared in his ears, the red-skinned Ginyu Elite watched with inquisitive hunter-green eyes as the Space Pod, which he presumed to be Vegeta's, merged into the blanket of stars above. His blood froze and for a moment he was completely deaf to the music blaring in his ears. Jeice doubled forwards as a premonition of doom flooded his every sense, the icy sensation chilling him to the very bone. Then, as quickly as it came, the feeling disappeared and the music continued to pound in his ears. But that tingling sensation still lingered in his memory.

"Bleedin' Hell..." he muttered, his dark emerald eyes straying to the sparkling stars shining outside his window.

"Hey, moptop!" Recoome's deep, booming voice called out from the doorway, "C'mon, we're going bowling!"

The stubby, green-skinned Guldo leaning on the doorway by Recoome's massive feet, winked craftily at Jeice. "I'll bet you five chocolate-nut bars that I'll beat you into the ground tonight."

Jeice instantly flashed a cocky grin at his two counterparts, "Yer on, mates!" Dumping his headphones on the desk, Jeice strutted towards them, abandoning his earlier anxieties as the opportunity to gain one up on Guldo and Recoome made itself apparent.

Any criticism is very much appreciated!! Thanks