It doesn't seem like it's been nine years already, but it has. Eight and a half since Videl began wearing scarves and heavy makeup, dark sunglasses even at night, brushing off questions and vehemently refusing when someone would mention abuse. But the tears were in her eyes and the pain was in her words when she spoke, and even at such a young age, I understood.
And then she was gone. Dead, with Gohan laughing over her corpse, and then giving way to heart-wrenching sobs, weeping his apologies into her broken form.
Nine years since he attacked Chi-Chi. Nine years since he was killed by his own father. Nine years since Goku had lost the innocence that had forever brightened his eyes.
And no one could figure out why he snapped. Why Gohan, just reaching the adult stage of his life, had lost himself. To what, we can only wonder.
Someone mentioned genetics, and my life has not been the same. After all, Gohan was the first Human-Saiyan crossbreed that we knew of. I pray every night that Gohan's problem was not his genetic makeup, that he simply lost a few screws. And yet, every day my mother finds more evidence against that odd pedigree. Every day, she finds more evidence that the two species most base personality traits conflict fatally. Every day her findings condemn us, and there is no cure for yourself.
So now, at age 17, their eyes are on me, and I can feel the tension from everyone who comes near me. Goten has my same fears, and he watches to see if he will suffer Gohan's fate. If I will suffer Gohan's fate.
I can't even bear to look at Bra. I can't fail her. How could she live her life, knowing that she will turn into a psycopath at age 18? It has been hard enough on me, these nine years, and I would not subject her to such a burden.
I can't fail her.