Catch Me I'm Dreaming
Disclaimer: Do not own.
I remember I was eleven years old sitting in front of the TV waiting for the biggest event of Earth's history: The Cell Games. My father was to attend this tournament, and it was expected that he would defeat Cell. And he did of course, to no one's surprise. But something unexpected happened nevertheless, and a group of no-name fighters stepped up to challenge the monster. My father was humble enough to allow them to fight first, but I suppose it was a lost cause considering he was the victor in the end. Regardless, I remember there were four men within that group of fighters that drew my interest; and all four had glowing golden hair, identical to the mysterious fighter's that showed up at the bank two days ago.
There is no doubt in my mind that this man is connected to that group of fighters shown at the Cell Games seven years ago. And to be frank, I have a hunch that he may have even been one of them.
There was a boy. He was about my age, if I had to guess. The 'Delivery Boy', is what they called him back then. He had unruly golden hair and a bright aura enveloped his entire being, just like the other three men that were present.
He fought that monster…
And if he lived to tell the tale, and my assumptions are correct, the Delivery Boy and the mystery fighter must be one and the same.
It must be true. Those eyes… those teal eyes of that boy back then burned through my mind, forever engraved in my memories. And I have no doubt in my mind that those irises are the same ones as this mystery fighter's.
I have to find out. But how?
I suppose I could start my investigation at home. Dad saw those men at the Cell Games, so he must have an idea as to who they were or where they came from.
I knock on the door to the den, and Dad tells me to come in. He's sitting in his favorite red recliner in front of the fireplace. The TV is on and he's reviewing his last match at the Tenkaichi Budokai. Typical of him, really. Hero of the Earth or not, I always thought my father was a bit too egotistical for my liking.
"Hi, honey. What brings you here? You know I don't like being disturbed when I'm in my den," he says as I approach.
"I know," I reply, "but I needed to ask you something."
"Well it better be important. The next world tournament is sneaking up on us, and I need my full attention on my training," he says bitterly.
"It's about the Cell Games," I say.
And I swear time just stopped.
Dad doesn't even look like he's breathing anymore. I hope I didn't cause any traumatic memories to pop up.
"What about the Cell Games?" he finally asks. His demeanor just changed, but I can't quite point out what exactly. He almost sounds distant now.
"I want to know more about those golden-haired fighters," I answer. "You were there on the tournament grounds with them, so you got a good look at them didn't you? You said that they were just showboating with lame magic tricks, but there's something about them that's been plaguing me."
"Wh-wh-what's that?" He's beginning to sound nervous again. Dad always sounds nervous when he talks about the Cell Games, and I'm not sure why. I've always assumed it to be post-trauma. Usually I end up veering off topic just for the sake of keeping my father sane, but I know I have to push to get any information out of him.
"The young boy that was with them, the Delivery Boy. I want to know more about him. Can you tell me?" I ask.
"Wh-what's there to know? H-he was just a little twerp who thought he could beat Cell! He had nothing going on compared to me, the World Champion!" Dad begins to force out ragged laughs. "I'm the one who beat Cell, and that's all that should matter! You shouldn't concern yourself about those losers. You're a winner – like me!"
"But… did he make it alive?" I ask. That's really all I need to know.
Dad starts muttering something I can't decipher. He then says, "Yeah, sure. I don't know. Why does that matter? What's important is that Cell was beaten – by me!"
It's no use, I should have known. There's no way I'm going to pry any information about the boy from Dad. It's going to be up to me to find out, I suppose.
I'm relieved to wake up the next morning and find that it's Saturday. Finally, the weekend! Erasa and I made plans to hang out today, so I wash up and get ready. We never really make concrete plans when we want to hang out, but I do know that I want to tell her about my intuitions on this glowing crime fighter.
Erasa and I meet up at the city park, and we start talking about the usual topics that come up between friends – the latest episode of our favorite soap, upcoming movies, any school exams we're worried about, whatever. Eventually our little discussion comes to a close, and I finally decide that it's time to bring that up.
"Erasa, I've been meaning to talk to you about the glowing fighter," I begin.
"Him again? Man, Videl. You weren't kidding when you said you plan to find this guy out, huh?" she raises an eyebrow at me.
"And how long have you known me?" I ask rhetorically.
"Well, what is it?" she asks.
"The other day. You mentioned something about the fighters at the Cell Games," I say as I take a seat on a nearby bench.
"I did?" Erasa asks as she sits next to me.
"Don't tell me you don't remember," I raise my eyebrow at her skeptically.
"I'll keep my mouth shut then," she pretends to zip her mouth. What a wise-ass.
"You were talking about how the men at the Cell Games could change their hair color," I say, trying to jog her memory.
"Oh yeah. What about that?" she asks. By the tone of her voice, it seems she's beginning to remember. "Don't tell me you had some kind of epiphany because of what I said. It wasn't like I was trying to invoke some deep thought – I was just messing around like everyone else was."
"I know you were, but you did get me thinking," I say. "It sounds crazy, but hear me out. I have a feeling this new crime fighter is one of those men from the Cell Games."
"What?" Erasa sounds incredulous as ever.
"That man at the bank was glowing, there's no doubt about it. And Chief Loo confirmed that there were witnesses who saw the same thing I did, so I know I'm not crazy. Think about it. Glowing body, golden spiky hair, green eyes… doesn't that ring any bells for you?" I ask.
"W-well, yeah, I guess… but, Videl, if your theory were true, how are you going to find this guy?"
I stop for a moment to think. I have no answer; I don't know how I'm going to nab him. The abilities he displayed at the bank were far beyond a human's. Is it a trick? Is it real? It sure felt real… If it is, then he's going to be one hell of a catch when I do get my hands on him.
"No matter," Erasa says, despite my lack of an answer. Her eyes light up and she looks directly at me. "Now I have something else to discuss."
I raise my eyebrow at her inquiring what it is.
"Well, I suppose we're talking about the same day. You seemed a little comfortable around Gohan, going out of your way to defend him and all. Something going on?" She smiles coyly at me as her eyes narrow into tiny slits.
I squint my eyes to mimic her and scoff, "Nothing's going on." I watch her study me from head to toe as she leans backwards with a smirk on her face. "What?" I ask in frustration.
"Oh, nothing," Erasa immediately retracts from her judgmental posture and peers upwards to the distant sky. Her pupils then dash back towards me from the corner of her eyes and again they narrow, reading me like a dirty book.
"Will you stop that?" I huff, letting out a scoffing laughter. I can't tell if I'm laughing at her or at myself. Why do I feel my face burning up? "You guys were just teasing him too much, that's all." Is that my only excuse?
"Oh please. You acted like you'd jump in front of a bus for him, Videl," she rolls her eyes. "But," Erasa then pauses for a slight second, "I suppose you owe him for saving your life the other day, am I right?"
Again I find myself jeering with laughter. "You're kidding, right? Gohan made things worse for me if anything. He shouldn't have jumped in front of a knife for crying out loud. I don't owe him anything; he's just a nice kid."
I kick at the dirt under my boots, taking a moment to stare at the soil underneath me. Swinging my legs back and forth as I sit on the wooden bench, I watch the tip of my boots scrape along the earth. There's something about Gohan that continues to grab my attention and I'm not sure what it is. He certainly doesn't seem to be anything special – just a normal high school kid. Sure his grades are superb, but that's nothing out of the ordinary I suppose. Definitely not attention-worthy in my book. He's just… different. His eyes are so gentle and kind…sincere and genuine… and yet when I look at his body language, it tells me a completely different story. Nervous and restrained… as if he's hiding something. I doubt he is of course. What has he got to hide? That he got a C+ on a homework assignment once? Even that sounds unlikely. Maybe all this time living my life surrounded by scum-like criminals has molded me. Changed my perception about people. That a genuine guy like Gohan just seems plain weird to me now.
Erasa clears her throat, hurling me back to the present. "Well then. I guess I read your vibes wrong, sorry. It just seemed like, you know," she drifts off.
"No, I don't," I quickly respond back as I get up from the bench. "Anyway, I need to get going."
"Where are you going?"
Erasa's eyebrows perk up. "You got a call?"
"I wish," I sneer. "I just need to meet up with Jon for a moment. Ask him some questions."
As I walk off towards the exit of the park, I hear Erasa's voice call out from behind, "If it's about Glow Boy, ask him if they know he's single!"
I head into the station and Officer Kite's eyes brighten. He stands up from behind his desk and waves me in with a welcoming smile.
"Long time no see, Videl. What brings you here?" he asks.
"Hey, just stopping by to see the chief. Is he in?"
"Actually Loo's out on his lunch break; he should be back in 10. Why don't you take a seat?" Kite gestures me towards the row of chairs lined up against the wall.
"No thanks. Can't help but think I'm waiting to go through booking, sitting in those chairs," I laugh.
He chortles in return, shaking his head. "I don't blame you. It's almost surreal seeing these seats so empty nowadays. That Gold Fighter's been really at it, taking down all those criminals. Usually it's you and us getting at them and bringing them here in these seats, but now they just go straight to the holding cells. It's almost unfortunate that this mystery fighter's here now."
I look at him quizzically and ask, "Why's that?"
Kite sits back down behind his desk, his chin resting on his clasped hands. "Well, normally when we nab a criminal, what do we do?"
"We book the culprit and go through normal procedures until he's tried in court. So?"
"That's just it," Kite furrows his brow. "Since Goldie's here, we can't do our normal routine anymore. Nobody's seen the guy, for one. But even more importantly, there are no witnesses to these nabbings either. Jon told you, right? We have no clue if this new fighter's actually stopping crime or is just picking fights. Regardless of the fact that he's only brought down people with heavy criminal backgrounds, that type of argument doesn't hold in court. If these criminals are smart enough, all they have to do is play the victim card and they're set free the next day. The day of the bank robbery was different because all the workers were witnesses to their crime, but more low-key criminals like pick-pocketers, drunk drivers or even rapists can easily slip by the justice system. All because of Goldie."
"I… I've never thought about that," I mutter. Kite's right. Even if this mystery fighter's stopping these guys because of their crimes, there's no way in proving that in the justice system. He needs to testify and there needs to be witnesses. Or else all those guys who have been caught by him can get released the very next day! This is absurd. I doubt the mystery fighter has even thought about this.
"We need to do something," I say.
"You need to do something," a voice calls from behind.
I turn around and Chief Loo is standing by the door, pointing at me with the remnants of his meatball sub clutched in his hand.
"I need to do something? What are you talking about, Jon?" I cross my arms.
Jon shoves the rest of his sub in his mouth and beckons me with his finger to follow him to his office. He takes a seat behind his desk and I stay standing, awaiting the next words to come out from his lips.
"Look," Jon finally speaks as he wipes his mouth with a napkin. "We thought up a plan. Whether Goldie's doing this for the good of the city or he's just having some personal fun, we need to catch him. The public opinion about this guy is split, believe it or not. The younger generation loves him and well, others, not so much. He's too mysterious to be trusted. His face needs to be revealed for the sake of relieving suspicion."
"And how do you propose we go about doing that?" I ask cynically.
"Like Kite said, witnesses. His actions need to be revealed so the general public knows he's doing this to help the city."
"And if he's not doing all this to help the city?"
A cunning smirk creeps up on Jon's face. "We're killing two birds with one stone. That's why we need you in on this. You're the strongest crime fighter out there, Videl. If anyone can bring this guy down, it's you." He stands up from his seat and begins to pace back and forth. "We need you to be a decoy. The damsel in distress so to speak, so he'll fall right into the palm of our hands."
"I don't understand. If the mystery guy isn't out there to help the people of Satan City, then why should we think he'd fall for a trap like this? He wouldn't be interested in saving people, he'd be interested in beating people up," I retort.
"And that's why you're so perfect for this role, Videl!" Jon grins. "You know how to defend yourself; everyone knows that. If it seems like you're having trouble dealing with a bunch of thugs, maybe Goldie will swoop in and take over the scene. It works both ways."
As crazy and circumstantial this all sounds, it makes sense. Who else would be able to pull off the role besides me?
"OK, you've convinced me. I was hoping I'd get to talk to you about the mystery fighter anyhow."
"Oh?" Jon looks over at me. "So it looks like we're pretty much on the same page then."
"Pretty much," I agree.
Except for the fact that the mystery fighter may be linked to the Cell Games. That's something I'll keep to myself for now. Considering the police and the citizens of Satan City are wrapped around my father's fingers, I doubt they would hear me out if I told them the possible connection between the Cell fighters and 'Goldie', as the police here like to call him.
I guess it's up to me now to figure out how to go about initiating this plan of ours. What do I do? Should I just plant a scenario in the middle of the city and hope the guy just happens to be in the area? There's no information about this golden fighter and that sure doesn't help my case. Maybe if I think back to the bank robbery something about him will stick out to me. Of course the only thing I can think of is the fact he knew my name. And on that note, how the hell am I gonna find out about that? This is beginning to feel worse than doing my math homework.
I bring my conversation with Jon to an end and thank him and Kite for the information as I head out the door, adding that I'd contact them once I figure out a plan. For now, I know I have to figure out a way to encounter this fighter.
Monday rolls along and I'm sitting in class, hardly listening to the teacher's lecture. I never had a knack for neuroscience. It's just one of those subjects that flies right over my head. Erasa's picking at her nails and Sharpner's dozed off. Gohan on the other hand is writing notes as fast as I type on a computer. He really is too smart for his own good. I can't even keep up with the teacher's vocabulary to write proper notes. Luckily before I know it, class ends. A communal sigh of relief spreads across the room before the sound of shuffling papers and books closing orchestrate. I close my textbook and tuck it underneath my armpit, ready to head to my locker until Erasa speaks up.
"Hey Sharpner, Videl." We both look over at her, our faces asking her what it is. "Got plans this weekend? I was hoping we all could hit the beach!"
"Hey, that sounds like a fantastic idea. Wow, Erasa, who knew you had it in you to think for once!" Sharpner grins as he pokes fun.
"I take it back. Gohan will replace you. Right, Gohan?" Erasa sticks her tongue out and frowns.
Sharpner whines, "Hey!"
"What, me?" Gohan asks as he stands up, hugging his textbooks to his chest.
"Yes, you. Is there another Gohan in this class? C'mon, it'll be fun. Let's all go together, this Saturday."
"I'm down," I say. I could use some R&R. I've really stressed myself out the past couple days and it would be good to clear my head.
End, chapter 4.