Hi again everyone! Thanks a lot for all the great feedback from chapter 1!
So I wanted to be sure and mention that this story is going to be quite different than the original ZAT. I promise to get to some good DBZ action stuff, but this is Christmas, and Christmas needs a little bit of… well… drama… right?
Forward we go!
Chapter 2: A Workshop to the North
"Coming!" Trunks shouted as he trudged across the house in his pajamas toward the door that was buzzing. He stretched and yawned before opening it, "Oh hey Gohan! What's up!"
"Yo Trunks!" Gohan saluted coolly. An observation pinged in Gohan's mind; now that Trunks was ten years old they were nearly the same height. Gohan only had maybe two inches over his friend. "I actually need to talk to your mom, is she in?"
"I think so, I don't think she's come out of her lab all night though," Trunks looked in that direction, "Come on we can go check."
"Awesome thanks!" Gohan entered and shut the door behind him.
The two trekked across the large complex filled with incredible gadgets and dinosaurs, "So where did you disappear to the other day Gohan?"
"Huh?" Gohan looked confused.
"Yeah, the night we were welcoming Uncle Tarble, you said you'd play some games with us once we got them all set up but then you disappeared," Trunks explained.
"Oh I'm sorry," Gohan scratched his head remembering the night, "I started talking to Piccolo and I guess I lost track of the time."
"Piccolo talks?" Trunks laughed, "No biggie Gohan, just Goten was saying you haven't been playing as much lately."
Gohan's mouth hung open slightly, "He said that?"
Trunks nodded as he knocked on the lab door.
Bulma sipped on her morning coffee as her tired eyes looked over the plans for her latest brainchild that came to her in the night. She groaned as she realized it was her morning coffee from the previous day. She dumped the cup as she heard the knock on the door.
"Mom, are you in here?" Trunks called as he entered the lab.
"Over here honey," Bulma replied without turning away from her spot.
Trunks held the door open, "Gohan's here to see you mom."
Bulma perked up, "Really now? Just the person I was hoping to see!" With a sudden burst of energy, Bulma hurried to the door.
"Hi Bulma, whoa!" Gohan had barely gotten a greeting out when Bulma grabbed him by the arm and dragged him deeper into the lab.
Trunks decided if anything interesting was going on that he wanted to see it and followed close behind.
"Let me start by telling you I had this dream a couple of weeks ago and then everything just suddenly made sense and the next thing I knew I was sketching out a blue print, and now I think I'm really on to something," Bulma started rambling as she dragged Gohan along.
Used to some of Bulma's genius outbursts, Gohan went along with it, "Okay, what's all this about?"
They reached her drafting table as Bulma pulled the large sheets off and displayed them before Gohan and Trunks, "This!"
Trunks looked at the ring on the paper in confusion but noticed Gohan's mouth was hanging open in shock. No one was talking so he finally asked, "What is it?"
Gohan took a step closer, "This is a plan for… a rift generator?"
Bulma nodded excitedly.
"English, anyone?" Trunks looked from his mother to his friend and back.
"Right," Gohan began to explain without looking away from the draft, "Basically it's a portal to another universe. It tunes to the frequencies of a particular dimension and establishes a link to it allowing things to cross over to it kind of like a bridge."
"Well… I guess that's kind of English, thanks," Trunks crossed his arms continued to watch.
"Bulma," Gohan started, "You know stuff like this isn't really allowed."
Bulma put the plans back on the table, "I know you've mentioned it before that randomly entering other worlds is dangerous and forbidden, but this isn't about profit or even exploration. We have already gotten involved in inter-dimensional conflict; this could be an answer for our defense. What do you say?"
Gohan chewed his lip for a moment. After a minute of silence, he held out his hand, "Can I see your pencil?" Bulma handed it to him and he climbed up onto the drafting stool and started adding to the design, "The math is a little off here; the vector of the lazimus is correlated to the event horizon of the inner planer dynamics, not the outer."
"That makes much more sense now that you mention it," Bulma watched excitedly as Trunks backed away clutching his head.
"Also as far as the physical structure of the ring goes, it needs to be reinforced with stronger material." Gohan pointed to three points forming a triangle inside the ring, "It will be under a lot of stress here holding a rift open and the whole thing would collapse on itself if these points were to so much as crack."
It appeared that Bulma understood everything as she rubbed her chin and nodded, "I hear you. Oh, one more question, does the electrical design look to be enough to handle the initial jump charge?"
Gohan looked over the pages really quick, "Yeah actually, that's a good design for the superconductors and conduit relays. They look like they could spark without a problem."
"Thanks!" Bulma smiled sweetly.
Gohan hopped off the chair and let Bulma look over everything.
Suddenly something else clicked in Bulma's head, "Oh, I'm sorry, you must have come by for a reason before I dragged you into this, what's up?"
"Oh yeah!" Gohan perked up, "I came to find out if I could borrow your Dragon Radar?"
"Of course," Bulma walked over to a lab closet marked "important" and fished through a few shelves, "Here it is." She turned around and held it up, "So what is it that you're wanting the dragon for, hmm?"
A slight blush came over Gohan, "I thought it might be fun to go collect them, be something different to do."
"Still out for adventure, you Sons never change," Bulma chuckled as she handed Gohan the radar. Once she was close enough and knew Trunks wasn't paying attention she whispered, "If there's anything you need to talk about though, you know you can always come ask me."
Gohan gulped hard but quickly recovered his composure, "Thanks a lot Bulma, I owe you!"
"Anytime!" Bulma winked before returning to her drafting table.
Trunks followed Gohan out as he left the lab, "So Gohan, is Goten going with you to find the Dragon Balls?"
"Umm…" Gohan stumbled, "Actually Goten doesn't know I'm looking for the Dragon Balls yet, it's kind of a secret until I find them all."
"Oh…" Trunks thought for a moment then grinned, "Alright, I won't say anything, for now."
Gohan pushed him playfully as they laughed, "Yeah you won't!" Once outside Gohan looked up to the sky, "Nimbus!" The cloud swooped down allowing Gohan to hop on to it before flying off to the sky.
The Dragon Radar booted up and began displaying the locations of all seven artifacts. Gohan smiled, "This is easy now, let's go!"
In a desert, the radar pointed into the heart of a huge dust storm, spanning hundreds of feet into the air. Gohan anchored himself nearby and flared his ki against the dust, calming the storm and revealing the three star Dragon Ball, "That's one."
A loud roar echoed throughout the planes, "Easy there boy, I've almost…" Gohan plucked the five star ball out from a tyrannosaurus from where it was wedged under its horns, "Got it! I bet that feels better," Gohan patted the huge beast. "Two."
With very little light Gohan crawled through a deep narrow cave. He forged down a spiraling path past stalagmites and stalactites and through waist deep mud. Finally he held the two star ball up above his head and shouted, "Haha, three!" Which woke up the bats and flooded the entire cave in their flapping cloak.
Gohan folded his clothes neatly before shouting, "Geronimo!" and diving off Nimbus into the ocean. When his head emerged again, the seven star ball was clutched firmly in his hand, "This makes four."
A cloud floated by the ash spewing from a caldera of a volcano making it hard to see anything. Gohan made out the sparkle of the one star ball just in time to snatch it before the ledge it was on was smashed by a molten projectile, "Whew, five!"
Fierce winds blew atop a tall narrow ledged mountain. Gohan floated to the peak where the winds held the four star ball wedged in place on the end of a thin brittle platform. Without much care Gohan swooped in and collected the ball, "Yes, that's six, only one more!" and left without even noticing the disheartened looks of a strange little blue man, a woman, and a dog who had almost made it to the ledge.
Gohan zipped up a dark red hooded jacket as he got cold approaching the last ball. The radar pointed ahead, "It's in North City…" Gohan frowned as he landed on the outskirts of town and let Nimbus float on.
Snow was collecting on roofs and sidewalks as Gohan started making his way into the city. He noticed how he could see his breath and smiled a bit though he was never fond of the cold.
North City didn't have much in the way of attractions. The buildings were mostly bland and brown brick. Even the people about town wore mostly brown and earth colors. Port like vents stuck out of the ground every few hundred meters with what seemed to be steam coming out of them.
With a bit of a cold bite to the air, people had their heads down and were moving quickly. No one seemed to pay the dark haired boy even an acknowledgement as he made his way through town.
Feeling secure enough that no one would even notice, Gohan pulled out the Dragon Radar and started to deliberately follow the signal through town. Gohan found it mildly difficult as he was used to getting places in a straight line, but realized it would look odd if he were to jump over houses and buildings in his way. At the same time though the dead end streets were starting to frustrate him.
The street Gohan had been walking down didn't even go straight, it curved in a different direction and it had been a while since Gohan had seen a cross street going in the direction he actually wanted to go.
Up ahead there was a narrow space between buildings that appeared to be some kind of alleyway. Hoping it connected to a better street, Gohan turned through it. His face was plastered to the radar as it ticked away his distance to the final ball. He was engrossed enough in his task that he almost didn't notice a muffled sound ahead of him.
Gohan stopped for a moment as he tried to make out what he was hearing. A heavy breathing, but more like whimpering, definitely sniffling, like someone was hurt.
More rushed than before to find the source of the noise, Gohan quietly floated closer to the sound. There was a stack of boxes against a wall, and mostly hidden on the other side of the boxes was a boy with his face buried in his knees.
Not sure what the best thing to do would be, Gohan thought he should at least make his presence known, "Why are you crying?"
Startled, the boy on the ground jumped to his feet, his eyes wide and slightly puffy. He stood at about Gohan's height, maybe slightly taller; he brushed some of his light brown hair from in front of his green eyes as he stared Gohan down. For a moment the boy seemed embarrassed and couldn't say anything.
Finally finding his voice, the boy took a step forward as if to show aggression, "Why are you sneaking up people?!"
Gohan cocked his head to the side, not sure what to make of the boy's stance. After a moment of awkward silence the boy reached behind him and pulled out a skateboard, "Whatever man," he sighed indignantly before jumping on the board and skating away.
Not able to do much more than shrug, Gohan pulled out the Dragon Radar and continued on.
The town continued to be frustrating with very few streets actually going very far in the direction Gohan wanted to be walking. He was about to call Nimbus when a vent beside him let loose a long plume of smoke into the air. Gohan stayed and watched for a moment until it cleared. He walked over to the vent and looked down into it. It seemed to go down pretty far, much deeper than the street anyway.
"Don't be playing around that thing!" A woman's voice called out. Gohan turned and noticed the woman about his mother's age with a familiar protective expression on her face, "You never know if it's going to go again, and if that smoke burns you, well, good luck getting that old cheapskate Mister Durel to pay any recompense."
"Oh, thanks," Gohan bowed politely to the lady before he continued on.
The Dragon Rader zoomed in and showed the last Dragon Ball wasn't too far off now; maybe just another couple of blocks to go. The streets here were nearly deserted. On both sides of the street were apartment buildings that all seemed to be at least three to five stories tall. People were either inside staying warm or out somewhere else it seemed. The silence was enough that it was a little jarring when Gohan heard a slam followed by a yell, "Ouch, stop!"
The yell came from the top of one of the buildings, "What are you gonna do, run to your daddy? Well good!"
Gohan found his way behind the building into the shadows before floating to the top to see what the commotion was all about.
"I won't say anything just please let me go," a familiar voice pleaded.
"You're missing the point punk!" Gohan's head poked over the top of the apartment building to see a group of teenagers surrounding the kid he had seen crying earlier in the alley. "You're going to crawl back to your pop with a nice shiner, and maybe he'll get the picture."
The larger boys pushed him around their circle from one to another until the smaller boy fell in the middle of them, "He won't even care, really he won't."
"At least it'll make me feel better then," The teenager doing the talking grabbed the boy by the shirt collar and hoisted him to his feet as his fist reeled back. The boy looked away as he braced for the blow.
"Don't you dare hit him!" A voice demanded from behind the group.
The teens looked shocked for a moment that someone else was on the roof even though they were on the side with the stair well, but they were over it soon as the ring leader dropped the boy and turned to Gohan, "Listen kid, if you don't know what's going on then butt out, this ain't got nothing to do with you."
Gohan shook his head, "If you're planning on hurting someone for any reason then you're going to have to get passed me first."
The older boy laughed, "Do you really think we'd have a problem with that punk?"
"I should warn you," Gohan assumed a fighting stance, "I've been trained in the martial arts."
"Send a kid to a few karate classes and next thing you know he thinks he's a Satan," all the teens laughed as they circled around Gohan, "Since you think you're doing something good, I promise not to hurt you too bad."
The teen laughed with his friends and looked away as though he wasn't serious before he turned and charged at Gohan as if to take him off guard. Before anyone even knew what was happening, the older boy's face was on the ground and Gohan was holding the boy's arm clamped tight to his back.
Even the boy on the ground was confused. He wasn't hurt, but the shock of being pinned to the ground faster than he could blink took a moment to process, "The hell, get off me!"
"Not until you swear that you're not going to bother anyone anymore," Gohan demanded.
The boy grunted, "Get this punk off me!"
The next few boys charged in, "Wrong move guys."
As the first boy extended his arm to punch, Gohan reached in and grabbed the boy's wrist as if he were hardly moving and pulled him forward off his balance before sliding him backwards into the next boy's path tripping one attacker with another.
A kick flew towards Gohan's head from another direction, Gohan grabbed the ankle gently once it was within his arm's reach and carried the momentum back with it flipping the kid's kick back over his own head and forcing him into an unbalanced backflip.
The last two charged in together with their shoulders heaved forward to tackle Gohan down. Gohan put a hand on each of their shoulders halting their moment completely before he simply flung them back and they slid across the roof a good thirty feet.
Finally the ring leader of the group was on his feet again and threw a punch toward the back of Gohan's head. He never even saw Gohan turn around, it was as if one moment the back of the kid's head was right in his sights, and the next he was staring into the kid's eyes, his fist caught in the other boy's hand. He grunted as he pushed against Gohan's hand as hard as he could but it was like pushing against a skyscraper.
"You little shiiii…" The boy's words didn't have a chance to complete as Gohan squeezed the fist in his grasp slightly. The boy sank to his knee; his free hand immediately went to clutch at his trapped one as he pulled and yelled. It felt as though his hand was caught in the gear of a machine that was slowly turning, "Please! I'M SORRY!"
With an apology out, Gohan let go of the boy who immediately fell back grasping his hand. The teen looked his hand over, it wasn't broken, but it was a little red and swollen, "What the hell?"
One of the other boys ran up to his hurt friend, "Dude, are you okay?"
"No…" the boy was almost sobbing as he shook his hurt hand and climbed to his feet.
A smirk crossed Gohan's lips, "Unless you still want more then maybe you should come up with a new strategy," the smirky look turned serious, "like running away."
The first of the boys took off immediately which quickly sparked an exodus from the roof top.
The smaller boy watched in awe as his tormenters were rushing by him in a panic. A smile crossed his face which didn't go unnoticed by the larger boys as they ran by, "This isn't over," the ringleader shouted as he ran by and shoved the boy as hard as he could.
The boy tried to stay on his feet as he slid back but as the back of his knees collided with the roof barrier, the majority of weight shifted over the side of the building and over he went.
Having noticed that he went too far, the teen boy stopped and stared in shock and horror at the spot where the younger boy had been standing, "No!"
The others who hadn't quite left through the roof access noticed the predicament as well and stared dumbfounded. The next thing they noticed though was that the other boy who they were running from wasn't on the roof anymore either.
The small boy watched the ground beneath him approach in slow motion as he tried to breathe calmly. At one point his mind registered that he was falling nearly a hundred feet, and then he tried to think if people normally survive hundred foot falls or not.
Before the boy had much time to think about anything else he noticed he wasn't watching the ground approach in slow motion, he was actually slowing down. He looked up and noticed the boy from the roof had a hold of his leg and was lowering him down gently, but he also noticed that there didn't seem to be anything holding on to the boy who was holding on to him.
The snow piled on the sidewalk was soft as the boy was gently plopped onto it. Without getting up, the boy looked up at Gohan, "Thanks…"
Gohan smiled as running footsteps were heard from the nearby stair well before the door was slammed open and a few of the teen boys ran out, "Bit, are you alright?!"
Looking angry, Bit stood up, "No thanks to you guys, leave me alone!"
The teen boys nodded and walked away without further incident.
Satisfied with the situation, Gohan pulled out the Dragon Radar and started following it again, "Hey wait!"
Bit dusted himself off, ran up alongside Gohan and walked with him, "That was really cool what you did back there, I might have died if you hadn't come around when you did."
"Actually, if it hadn't been for me those guys wouldn't have pushed you off the building, they didn't want to kill you," Gohan muttered without looking up.
"They still would have beat me up real good," Bit smiled, "but, boy, you showed them," he mimicked Gohan's moves in the air, "Pull, shove, floor! You made them look like a bunch of sissies! Here I always thought those guys were really tough."
Gohan finally grinned a bit, "It's not that they weren't tough, I'm sure they're really strong, but people shouldn't use their strength to hurt others. So don't worry, I'd help anyone caught up in an unfair match like that."
The boy shrugged and continued, "So what's your name?"
Gohan held out his hand, "My name's Gohan, and yours?"
"My friends call me Bit," the boy said as he shook Gohan's hand, "Nice to meet ya."
"Yeah," Gohan smiled.
"So another thing," Bit got quiet for a moment before asking, "how did you fly?"
Gohan shook his head and laughed, "You're probably better off forgetting you ever saw that."
"Aww…" Bit whined.
As the two were walking side by side Gohan noticed the boy was just slightly taller than he was, "How old are you?"
"Twelve," Bit answered, "You?"
"Umm…" Gohan thought about his answer for a moment, "Eleven…" It almost came out as a question.
Thinking Gohan's hesitation had something to do with feeling insecure over being younger, Bit added, "Don't worry, I guess you could say I just turned twelve, so we're about the same age."
"Oh…" Gohan looked away, "Cool…"
The Dragon Radar beeped as it pinged the ball and zoomed again. Gohan's attention fell back on the radar as he continued walking in that direction. Bit noticed the radar and quickly put two and two together, "What are you looking for?"
"A Dragon Ball," Gohan started but realized that probably sounded weird to other people, "It's a really important old artifact, and with it lots of things can be fixed."
"Oh," Bit didn't ask any more questions but continued walking with Gohan.
Realizing that he had apparently acquired a companion for the moment, Gohan tried to break the silence, "So what was going on earlier today that you were upset over?"
A frown crossed Bit's face, "You're probably better off forgetting you ever saw that."
Gohan gave Bit a quirky look, "Don't steal my lines."
Bit laughed and kept up with Gohan.
The radar took Gohan's attention again as it started beeping rapidly. He tapped the button on top to force it to zoom in, "Weird."
"What's wrong?" Bit asked as he noticed Gohan looked confused.
Gohan kept staring at the Dragon Radar "…According to this, the ball should be right here, but I don't see it anywhere."
Bit looked around and noticed they were standing right in the middle of a street with nothing around them, "Here? As in here, here?"
"Yeah, it shows that we should be standing right on top of it…" At that moment a vent nearby almost whistled as it spewed out a plume of smoke. Gohan blinked a few times as he watched the smoke rise into the air and dissipate. "We should be standing… right on top… of it…"
"Oh," Bit watched as Gohan sank to the ground and put his ear against the street.
"What's underneath us here?" Gohan asked from the ground.
"The factory," Bit answered plainly, "There's a huge factory that runs almost all throughout the town underground. Most of the people who live here also work in the factory."
"An underground factory," Gohan smiled as he hopped back up to his feet, "I need to get down there."
Bit shook his head, "Not a good idea," Gohan noticed the sullen expression overtake Bit suddenly. "The owner of the factory is kind of an old coot. He doesn't like people in the factory unsupervised or who are unauthorized."
Gohan scratched his head, "Doesn't sound like you like this guy."
"No one does," Bit continued, "He's a stingy old man, the factory has made him really rich but he doesn't do anything good with his money. And he pays his employees next to nothing and expects a lot of detailed work out of everyone."
"He sounds mean," Bit nodded in agreement. "Alright, but I'm still going to get in there and find what I came here for."
"There might be a way in nearby," Bit thought hard for a moment, "I don't know all the entrances and exits to the factory, but there are port windows and larger vents scattered all over town. If we could find one we could get in easy."
"Well this town is too confusing to just wander around looking for something like that, come on!" Gohan pulled Bit into an alley way behind a building, "We can check over the city for these vents and windows faster my way, we just need a little cover." Bit was still confused as Gohan cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted into the sky, "Nimbus!"
Mildly shocked, Bit jumped back as a cloud zoomed down from the sky and pulled up beside them. Gohan wasted no time and hopped onto the cloud and held his hand out to his new friend, "You want to come?"
Bit considered Gohan's offer for only a moment before he took the proffered hand, "Yeah!"
"Alright Nimbus, let's float over town, nice and easy," Obeying Gohan's command, the cloud drifted back up into the sky affording the boys a wider look over the area.
A thought crossed Bit's mind and he had to ask, "Gohan, you can fly on your own, I saw it, so why do you ride a cloud?"
Gohan looked over his shoulder at Bit and shrugged, "Why do you ride a skateboard?"
Bit nodded and said nothing further on the subject.
They circled over the area a few times before Bit pointed down at a particular street, "There, those are port windows that go down to the factory."
"Great!" Gohan twisted Nimbus around in that direction, "Take us down where no one will see us please Nimbus."
The cloud obeyed perfectly and floated down into an alley way across the street from the windows. The two hopped off the cloud and Gohan waved it off as it floated back up to the sky.
"Wow," Bit watched the cloud leave and laughed, "I'd swear I was dreaming, you've gotta be the coolest funkiest guy I've ever met."
"That's a new one on me," Gohan laughed as they walked up to the windows.
Bit kneeled down in front of the window, "They're locked, but I know what to do." Bit pulled out a card and a pen and started fiddling with the window. In a few minutes there was a click and the window slid open.
"You're kind of good at that," Gohan noticed.
"I used to play around these more often," Bit admitted before looking in to make sure no one was around, "Can you lower us down?"
"Yeah," Gohan grabbed bit from under the arms and slowly lowered them both to the floor inside the factory.
For the most part the factory was dark. Lots of large rooms connected by wide hallways filled with boxes and supplies. Metallic whirring noises and hisses could be heard down the hall. Every few minutes the tubes that follow the ceiling would shake as though something was being pumped through them.
The boys halted their talking as they went sneaking through the compound. Gohan pulled the Dragon Radar out to check when a door at the end of the hallway opened and two men walked in. Bit and Gohan barely hid in time to avoid notice, "Sir, please consider what this will do to employee morale."
"Don't you talk to me about your idiotic fallacies… morale… bah!" The older man who walked ahead scoffed.
"The workers have withdrawn their request for a Winter's Day bonus, that's fine, the people agree they can make it without extra money," The man gulped nervously, "but sir… closing the factory for just one day to let everyone spend time with their family would mean a lot to them."
The older man stopped in his tracks, "Spend time with family? Bah! I'm doing them a favor by keeping them working."
"Mister Durel," The younger man tried a different approach, "a lot of the workers have children, and this holiday is especially important to those kids. Shouldn't they have their parents home with them on Winter's Day?"
"These children need to get used to the idea that the real world doesn't believe in their silly little ideas like holidays," Mister Durel spoke flatly, "The factory stays open, and all employees are expected to be at their posts being productive!" With an air of finality to his words, Mister Durel turned and stormed through.
"Whoa…" Gohan muttered once both men were out of earshot.
Bit nodded, "Yeah, that was Mister Durel, he owns this factory; we definitely don't want to end up on his bad side."
"No kidding," Gohan checked the radar and they continued on.
"So you said these Dragon Balls of yours can fix things?" Bit finally asked, "What kind of things?"
"All kinds of things," Gohan admitted, "They're really powerful and can turn back mistakesand make them as if they never happened."
Bit chuckled, "Did you hear that from the tooth fairy?"
"You'll see," Gohan smirked as they entered a larger room. The beeping was indicating they were close, very close. It was in this room. Gohan scanned over the walls and places he thought it might be. "I think it's…"
Before Gohan could state his thought, a voice from behind startled them, "Phillip Bit Durel, What the hell have I told you about coming down into the factory?!"
"Run!" Panicked, Bit grabbed onto Gohan's jacket and the two started running back down the hall.
Footsteps could be heard chasing after them from behind, "You damn ignorant brat, where the hell do you think you're going?"
Bit's speed increased as he sprinted through the hall way with Gohan keeping pace beside him.
"Do you think this is funny?!" The shouting voice behind them was still moving but sliding back as they pulled away, "You stupid brat, you're garbage just like the filth you cling to!"
They reached the room with the port windows, and Gohan quickly lifted Bit out through the top before anyone else was able to find them.
Before the window shut the voice shouted out, "Don't think you can hide forever, you'll crawl home eventually!"
Bit ran toward the alleyway with Gohan not far behind. Once they were in a secluded spot, Bit sank down, breathing hard like he was trying to catch his breath.
Gohan gave the boy a moment, realizing that was a good amount of running they just did. A shudder in Bit's shoulders caught Gohan's attention though as he realized there were other sounds coming from the boy. He was crying again, "Are you alright? Are you hurt?"
Bit shook his head vehemently.
Something finally clicked in Gohan's head as he looked over Bit carefully, "Bit… that man said some terrible things to you… that wasn't just over us being in the factory was it?"
There was no answer for a moment, but then in a cracking voice Bit replied, "No…"
Gohan kneeled down beside the boy, "Bit, the owner of the factory, Mister Durel… Who is that man to you?"
Through sniffs and wheezes Bit finally admitted, "He's my dad…"
I'm glad this chapter came together well, I feel like we're set up nicely for the what comes next now even if it's only hint between the lines at this point. Somebody's probably going to say, "Winter's Day?" and yes, I wanted a generic name for the holiday and the name seemed to fit the DBZ world quite well. I mean, North City? West City?
Anyway, more fun and action coming soon, I can't wait!
'Till next time!