Puppy Love: Mend
Disclaimer: Do not own.
Before you start reading:
Please be aware that this is a SEQUEL.
If you're interested in what happened prior that ultimately leads to this story, visit my profile and read the prologue, Puppy Love: Veil.
"GOOOHAN!" A shriek filled the crisp morning air.
"Oh no… I'm done for," the half-Saiyan grumbled as the pit of his stomach dropped.
He had hoped he would get away with it again today. Ever since Goten reached his toddler age, the child had been such a hassle for ChiChi. A hassle that gave Gohan more opportunities to sneak out into the wilderness to, but what else, train. However, it seemed that the boy's luck had run out. His mother's rage was clear in her voice – a voice so loud and crisp that even the good civilians of Satan City could probably hear her just as well.
It had been two years since Gohan had visited that city. Two extensive years that seemed to drag longer than any other. The half-Saiyan actually went out of his way to evade stepping into that metropolis by buying groceries and running errands way over in West City.
Yes, Gohan had been deliberately avoiding Satan City for all of two years.
All because of a single girl.
If it were up to Gohan, if he had the power and foresight of knowing what was going to happen that night, he would've prevented it at all cost. Unfortunately, he had no idea that his disguise was going to run out at such a detrimental time in his life.
He thought his plan was going smoothly – considering it was poorly thought out and on a whim. The half-Saiyan was sure he had successfully eradicated his alias, Nos, from his and Videl's life. Which, he technically did. Just not the way he had intended.
o (o) (O) (o) o
"…G-Gohan?" stunned and baffled, Videl studied the boy standing in front of her.
The puff of pink smoke had dissipated, and Gohan was suddenly standing in place of Nos. What was more confusing was that the boy in front of her was wearing the same blue gi Nos was.
Videl trailed her eyes up from his over-sized pants and drooping tunic. Hesitantly, she asked as her brow wrinkled, "Wh-what the heck is going on?"
Gohan took a few steps backwards as he nervously brought his hands up in front of him. He stammered, "V-Videl, I-I can explain…"
"E-explain? Explain how Nos vanished? How you appeared here all of a sudden? Why you're wearing his clothes?" she frantically sputtered. Her voice then trailed as the befuddlement in her tone heightened, "Nos just – Then you suddenly – And now that – …When...? …You can't mean…?"
"I wanted to tell you…I really did," the half-Saiyan quietly spoke as he averted his gaze.
Videl glanced up at the boy, staring into his shifty eyes. Her own eyes narrowed as her mind jogged. She couldn't believe it. He was implying the very thing she was so desperately hoping wasn't the case. If it really were true – that Gohan was the very same man she had just confessed her feelings to – well, that meant that…
Blushing, Videl quietly brought her hand up and placed the tips of her fingers against her forehead, reminiscing back to the gentle kiss he had placed just moments ago.
Immediately, she shot her glaring eyes at the half-Saiyan. Continuing to cradle her forehead, she hissed, "You and Nos… you and Nos are the same, aren't you?"
Gohan meekly nodded. He felt like he wanted to shrink and hide inside a rat hole and never come back out.
"This whole time?"
The boy hesitantly glanced up to look at the pigtailed girl, and immediately regretted it. Her cerulean eyes desperately pleaded him to tell her this was all but a dream. That he wasn't playing an awful trick on her.
Her voice began to quiver, "At the tournament? At the… at the parlor too? The whole time… this entire time you were Nos?"
Gohan didn't know what else to do but nod once more.
At first, the boy panicked internally. He could tell by the look in Videl's eyes that she was livid. Who could blame her? He had been lying to her since the tournament. He watched her raise her hand with her palm stretched out. He had expected that to come sooner or later. The most the boy could do at that point was to stand there and take the hit. Something he felt that he deserved, anyhow.
Videl's arm swung downwards, and Gohan quickly shut his eyes in anticipation. However, the boy never felt her hand strike him.
Hesitantly, the half-Saiyan opened his eyes. Casting his glance off to the side of his head, he saw her hand frozen in place, her palm inches from his cheek. He looked back at Videl and was immediately taken aback by the despairing look on her face. The last thing Gohan ever wanted to do was make her cry. It made him want to take her hand and slap himself in the face as he watched watery droplets cradle within the crevices of her eyes.
"Videl, I –"
"No," she immediately countered, "get out."
Stunned, the boy stood frozen in place. Frustrated by his unmoving reaction, she screamed, "Get out! I don't ever want to see you again! Leave me alone and don't come back!"
Disheartened, Gohan took a few steps back before whispering, "I'm sorry." He then ran off without another word.
o (o) (O) (o) o
That was two years ago, the last time Gohan saw Videl. It was easier to forget about it now, since it's been so long.
The half-Saiyan kept himself busy by returning to his studies and taking care of his younger brother. Yes, things seemed to be back to normal now. Profusely studying when his mother checked up on him one minute, and sneaking out his bedroom window to train outside the next, it certainly felt like nothing had changed.
"SOON GOOHAN!" ChiChi cried out once more.
Nothing had changed – not one bit.
Hurriedly, Gohan regressed from his Super Saiyan transformation and bolted back home.
Already anticipating his return, ChiChi greeted him outside in front of the door. Her arms crossed, her face scowling, the half-Saiyan knew he was in trouble.
ChiChi hissed as her frown deepened, "That does it. I'm not letting you off the hook anymore."
"Wha –?" Gohan hardly thought his mother ever let him off the hook.
"You heard me. I've warned you plenty of times, right? Well, I'm through with it. Homeschooling you just leaves too many chances for you to slack off."
"M-Mom, you don't mean –"
"I'm sending you to public school."
Gohan's onyx eyes widened in disbelief. 'Oh no. She can't be serious…!'
It was strange. The boy hadn't thought of the event that occurred two years ago until the moment his mother spewed the words 'public school'. If he were to end up at Satan City's high school… then it would be inevitable that he would encounter… that girl. Granted that it's been two years, he was sure that Videl had no intentions in forgiving him any time soon. If his mother was going to send him to public school, then he at least had to try and coerce her somehow to give him some leeway.
"If I have to go to public school, can I go to West High?" he meekly asked.
"Absolutely not! You and I both know that Orange Star High is the best rated school in the area! Plus, why would you want to go all the way to West City to attend school? Satan City is much closer to where we live. That's just unreasonable, even if you can fly."
"B-but, Mom, can't we at least talk about this?"
"You had your chance, Gohan. I've warned you plenty of times, haven't I?" ChiChi cocked an eyebrow. She then turned around and stepped inside.
Gohan couldn't believe it. He was going to attend school in Satan City – with Videl, no less. How did it turn out like this? It was ironic that he once gladly told the pigtailed girl he planned to attend school with her. He and her both wanted that.
But, now… now he was sure of it that Videl never wanted to see his face again. Not after the lies he fed her with.
Gohan was sure he was in Hell now.
The fact of the matter was, since that night he rescued Videl in that hostage situation, as much as he tried to forget about it all, Gohan felt differently about her than before. That night, she had confessed to Nos that she liked him. Although he knew that her feelings were for his disguise self, he couldn't help but fluster each time he reminisced back to that brief moment. The look she gave him, the timid sound of her voice, the sincerity behind her confession as a whole was engraved in Gohan's mind. It made him feel warm inside, it made his stomach flutter.
The half-Saiyan flushed in embarrassment each time he thought back to when he kissed her on the forehead. He wasn't sure why he had done it – it surprised him as much as it surprised Videl, probably. He knew she was only talking to Nos, but he couldn't help himself at the time. Oh, how he regretted ever laying his lips on her at that exact moment.
Now, two years later, he had to prepare to run into Videl after all that had happened.
o (o) (O) (o) o
As the week went by, the half-Saiyan attempted numerous times in talking his mother out of sending him to school in Satan City. He offered to run all of the errands for, to spend more time taking care of Goten, and even told her he'd swear off training from his lifestyle. However, ChiChi's decision was set in stone. She reasoned that she gave him enough warnings that she'd enroll him if he continued to misbehave. And no matter how many times Gohan tried to explain that the school in West City would be better suited for him, she wouldn't hear any of it.
By the end of the week, ChiChi had called Orange Star High to set up an appointment with the principal. It was a complete and utter defeat for Gohan. He would only need to take an entrance exam in order for the school to accept him as a transfer student. Of course, the boy thought about deliberately flunking the test; however he also knew that his mother was aware of his academic capabilities. There was no way that he could fail an entrance exam and not seem overtly suspicious. Not to mention the fact he would have to deal with her fit of raging anger later.
Was there really no way out of this situation? It seemed so.
'Maybe high school won't be so bad, after all. Maybe Videl and I will have completely opposite schedules, and we won't even see each other down the halls. Maybe Videl even forgot all about me!' Gohan tried to helplessly reason to himself. Yet, he couldn't shake the little voice out of his head that kept echoing, 'Yeah right'.
The boy was scheduled to take his entrance exam in a few days. He decided that he would have to grit his teeth and bear it. It wasn't like he had the luxury to refuse to take the test. Not with a mother like ChiChi.
And so he did. The time finally came to pay a visit to Orange Star High and Gohan was a bundle of nerves. He figured if he were careful, he could avoid bumping into Videl there. Yet the thought of it alone caused a chill to run up his spine in the pool of anxiety he was drowning in. If only he could somehow disguise himself at school so no one would recognize him. But then again, that's what got him into this whole mess with the pigtailed girl in the first place.
The entrance exam was a breeze just as he anticipated. He was sure he was going to pass with flying colors – something ChiChi whole-heartedly expected without a doubt. After handing in his exam to the administration desk, Gohan stepped out of the building with a defeated sigh.
"Hey!" the voice of a girl suddenly called out.
Hesitantly, the half-Saiyan turned around.
He was relieved to see someone else than a certain raven-haired girl; however, the familiar face standing in front of him still left him at unease. Yes, he remembered. That girl was a friend of Videl, the last time he could recall. He met her once or twice, the short-haired blonde. But what was her name again?
"You look real familiar," she studied him intently. In a flash, her blue eyes beamed, "Oh! Aren't you a friend of Satan Videl?"
"U-um, hi. I recognize you. You're, uh, you're her friend, right?" Gohan meekly replied, avoiding a direct answer to her question.
"Videl's? Yeah, we're like two peas in a pod!" she giggled, "I'm Erasa, in case you forgot. You're… – wow, gosh, your name's on the tip of my tongue, but I can't quite remember!"
"G-Gohan," he practically whispered.
Happy to finally remember, she burst out, "Gohan! That's right!" If it weren't for Erasa's bubbly and care-free aloofness, she'd have probably noticed the boy nervously jump in place as she loudly pronounced his name. "It's been a while. How you been? What are you doing here coming out of the administration building? Are you transferring?"
'There's no use in hiding it, right?' Gohan reasoned to himself.
"Y-yeah, I am. Well, I took the entrance exam," he quietly answered.
"No kidding! I hope you pass – that exam is hard! I'm sure you will, though. You seem like the smart-type," Erasa's mouth continued to run.
With a sheepish laugh, he rubbed the back of his neck. "Heh, th-thanks." Gohan then looked left and right, scanning his eyes around him. He lowered his voice and asked, "Um, speaking of Videl, though. Is she… is she around?"
"Yeah! She's on the way right now to meet me here. We're gonna go to the library together. Why don't you stick around and say hi? I'm sure she'd be happy to see you, it's been so long."
Gohan immediately shoved his hands up in front of him as he took a few steps back. Voice cracking, he quickly stammered, "A-ah, n-no, I can't. Ihavetogosorry!" Without another moment to lose, the half-Saiyan dashed out of sight.
Watching the boy vanish from her line of sight, Erasa commented to herself in befuddlement, "Wow. That was kind of weird."
The blonde turned around to see who was speaking to her.
"Oh, Videl! You just missed him."
"Who?" the pigtailed girl asked, cocking her head slightly to the side.
"You're never gonna guess," Erasa grinned as a glimmer shown in her eyes.
o (o) (O) (o) o
As expected, Gohan passed the entrance exam with a perfect score. After another visit or two at the school in order to sign papers and discuss his future at Orange Star High, it was finally time for the half-Saiyan to make his debut.
Landing a few streets away from the school's entrance, Gohan walked down the path, following the other students who wore identical badges indicating that they were student of O.S. High.
As he walked through the school gates, the half-Saiyan peered down at the school badge pinned to his white mandarin-style shirt. He was an O.S. student now – a Sophomore. Aside from the academics he would be studying, he had no idea what he was in for. He just hoped that his run-ins with Videl would be kept to a minimum.
Gohan looked back up from his badge and trained his eyes on the building's entrance. Students were hurrying into the school in an attempt to make it to class before the bell rang. As his eyes darted back and forth, watching them walk inside, he suddenly cut his own breath short.
His eyes met hers.
Gohan expected he would spot Videl sooner or later, but he was counting on the latter. Never did he think he'd encounter her to moment he walked onto the school grounds.
'What do I do, what do I do?' he panicked. His eyes were locked onto hers, and it was hard for him to read her stoic expression.
However, his uneasiness and anxious demeanor was answered when Videl swung her whole body around and quickly walked inside the school building without a second glance.
'Was… was that good or bad…?' Gohan couldn't help but ask himself. Did she not recognize him? He wasn't sure. It was a possibility since Videl was the type to confront others – at least from what he remembered of her two years ago. Yet she merely glanced at him and walked off.
DING… DING… DING… DING…
"Uh-oh, the first bell! I better hurry up and get to class." Frantic, Gohan rushed inside.
Weaving through the crowds of students, the half-Saiyan searched for the room number to his classroom. Finally able to spot it, he watched as a few students entered the room. As the door shut behind them, Gohan took a deep breath.
"Guess this is it," he said to himself before he opened the door and walked inside.
"Alright, folks, settle down!" Immediately, the teacher's voice rang through the boy's ears. Gohan looked up at the class and scanned his eyes across the students sitting down. Noticing him, the teacher spoke up, "Oh! You're the new student, aren't you?"
Turning to him, Gohan replied, "Y-yes, I am. I'm Son Gohan."
"Great. Let me introduce you real quick and then you can seat yourself." The teacher then turned his attention to the rest of the students and announced, "Before we begin, let me have your attention. We have a new student here today, and his name is Son Gohan. Please give him a warm welcome, and help him with anything he might need. It's a big school, and you all know how hard it was to get around at first, considering you are all Sophomores now. You all can learn from this man here as much as he can learn from you. Gohan managed to ace the entrance exam without a single red mark. Amazing, isn't it?" An awkward silence filled the air as the teacher paused. It was as if he was waiting for some kind of response from his students about Gohan's success, yet no one had a single comment to make.
"Um, it's nice to meet you all," the half-Saiyan meekly waved. As he stared up at the bunch, he noticed that a certain pigtailed girl was not in this class. A wave of relief hit him as his shoulders slumped. He then caught eye of Erasa, the girl who he had bumped into on the day of his exam, the girl who he remembered as Videl's friend. His glance was quickly greeted with a small wave on her end.
"You may take a seat wherever you'd like, Gohan," the teacher pointed towards the desks.
Immediately, Erasa beckoned him to sit in the empty seat next to her. As if he didn't have a choice, Gohan complied and took a seat next to her.
"Hi, Gohan! Wow, I can't believe we're in the same class together. I knew you'd be able to pass that test," Erasa excitedly remarked.
"Y-yeah," was all he managed to reply.
Class commenced, and the teacher babbled on with his lecture. Gohan peeked over at Erasa and noticed her uncaring demeanor. Her back was slumped with her rear practically off the chair, her neck craned all the way back so that her head dangled off the back support.
"Shouldn't you at least look like you're paying attention?" Gohan whispered.
Slowly, she bobbed her head forward and glanced over at the half-Saiyan. Rolling her eyes, she retorted, "Yeah right. That old man can barely read the text from the book he's holding. He's almost as blind as a bat. Besides, class is just so boring without Videl here."
"V-V-Videl?" stammering, Gohan's voice practically cracked.
"Yeah. She's in this class too. But she's not here today for some reason," Erasa looked up at the ceiling in thought. She then smiled, "Oh, she probably got a call from the chief."
"The chief?" he asked questionably.
"She fights crime, you know," Erasa beamed with pride. "She's the best crime fighter out there in Satan City – better than the police! So they always call her and ask for her help. Crazy isn't it?"
'Fight crime? Is that why? I can't shake the feeling that I'm the reason she's not here…'
Regardless, Gohan was impressed.
Just two years ago, the Videl he knew didn't have it in her to fight against hardened criminals. She was helpless against that petty purse-snatcher the day he met her; and she was even more helpless against that gang that took her hostage – even the prior attempt when they tried to take her. How was it that the pigtailed girl was capable of being the best crime fighter in Satan City within a mere two years?
"Videl's crazy, going out there alone," a man's voice chimed in. Gohan peered over and glanced at the blonde male sitting two seats away from Erasa. His hair was long and silky, and his arms indicated that he certainly wasn't a newbie in athletics.
"She's fine out there, Sharpner. You've seen her compete in tournaments before. She can handle all those baddies all by herself!" Erasa winked. She then turned to Gohan. "By the way, this is Sharpner. He's a bit of a muscle-head, but he's OK, I guess," she joked.
"I'm the captain of the boxing club. If you're interested in joining, let me know. Although I'm sure your books keep you a little too busy for sports," the blonde boy presumptuously introduced himself.
"Th-thanks for the offer, but I'm not sure I can join any clubs," Gohan ignored his ending comment.
"Figures. You probably don't know much about sports or fighting, do you?"
"W-well, I –"
Gohan cut himself off when he suddenly felt a familiar Ki. He peered down to the front of the class and trained his eyes on the door, anticipating for it to open.
On cue, the door swung open and a raven-haired girl popped in.
"Sorry I'm late, sir," she quickly apologized with a slight bow towards the teacher.
"It's quite alright, Videl. I already know of your circumstance, so why don't you take your seat."
"Thanks," Videl replied. She trudged up the stairs towards her desk with her head hanging, her mind drifting off in another world.
Smiling, Erasa quietly called out to her as she stepped closer, "Had to put away another criminal?"
Videl looked up at the recognition of her friend's voice and replied, "No, not particularly –"
And then, she froze.
Her eyes were glued on the boy sitting in front of her. His spikey hair, his onyx eyes, his nervous composure…
"Gohan…" her lips parted as she coarsely whispered his name.
End, chapter 1.
A/N: And so the beginning begins once more! Hope you all enjoyed reading. And I hope this is a good start to Gohan and Videl's rocky relationship! :P
Just FYI, Gohan still has Cell saga hair (for now).
I started my summer semester this week *whimpers* Luckily, it's a short summer session – about 7 weeks. But alas, I'm stuck in the hell hole called university until then. (Swear I thought I had a longer break than this!) Oh well. I'll still try to update frequently!
I appreciate comments and criticisms, and as always, suggestions.