I'm kinda pleased with this chapter, and I'm beginning to like this story a lot more than anything I've ever written, because I like Goten a lot. I promise to try and update everything else, so bear with me. I don't like forcing out anything. I promise that Maron will appear in the next chapter. I'm hoping for humor. ;D


"I thought I was doin' you a favor by lettin' you live with Trunks, but it's painfully obvious that it was the single most worst idea I've ever done. What were you thinkin'?! Drunken fist fightin', puttin' holes in walls? I expect this kinda wild behavior out of your father and that Vegeta, but you? I thought I raised you better 'an that, Son Goten," Chi-Chi ranted, hacking angrily at an onion before sliding its contents into a boiling pot of soup.

As Chi-Chi continued to lay into Goten the "fierce talking to" that he was hoping desperately to avoid, the hybrid bit back a groan as he lay his head on the table, cradling his mug of hot cocoa with one hand as he tightened his grip on his head with the other. Goku sat next to him, eyes darting between his wife and his youngest son as he bit into a piece of toast, light crumbs dusting the edges of his mouth.

"Go easy on 'em, Chi," Goku said between mouthfuls of jellied toast. "I'm sure it was all just an accident."

Chi-Chi slammed her ladle on the counter as she shot her angry gaze towards her husband, causing him to jump. "You call this an accident?!" she practically roared, sliding Goku her recently attained newspaper.

Goku looked down, his expression as lax as his posture. "A Hole in the Wall: Coincidence or Assassination Attempt?" it read in big, bold letters and underneath its title was a photo of his son's and best friend's apartment building in West City with a hole the size of a dinosaur.

"I don't know," he relented slowly, looking to Goten, whose chocolate brown eyes were giving him a pleading look. "I still say it was an accident."

Chi-Chi huffed, running a tired hand through her graying hair. "Did you even read the article, Goku?"

"Chi-Chi… I can't read," he replied, bringing his cup of cocoa to his lips to hide his growing smile. He winked at Goten, who, in turn, smiled back before drinking from his own cocoa.

"Fine," she snapped. "If that's the game you wanna play, then so be it! I'm gettin' too old for this," she grumbled angrily. Chi-Chi marched from the kitchen and into the living area, poking and prodding around the room in search for the remote. Maybe a little television would help ease her mood. Honestly, it was as if Goku conspired against her whenever their children horsed around. Goten was an adult now, a 24-year-old adult who should, at some point in his life, grow up! Gohan certainly never acted this way; although, Chi-Chi knew deep down inside that it was only a result of her eldest growing up way before his time.

"Thanks, Dad," Goten mumbled, sitting up straight once his mother was out of earshot. He stared at his reflection in his drink. "For a second there, I thought she was gonna start comparing me to Gohan again."

Goku smiled, turning to look at his wife, who'd practically turned the living room upside down in her search. "Ah, don't mind your mom. She's just cranky, 'cuz she got that phone call from Bulma early this mornin'. She ain't get much sleep last night… somethin' 'bout her "motherly instincts on an all-time high". I don't know," he trailed off with a shrug, chugging the rest of his cocoa in one swell gulp.

Goten almost sighed out of relief. For a second there, he thought his dad was going to say more than intended. Winter never did his visits home any good. On more than one occasion, he'd caught the… off-balance of his parents' ki, which only ever stood for one thing. Imagining them doing anything out of his comfort zone was almost as scary as his "uncle" being nice. It was gross.

"Hey," Goku called, catching his son's attention as he stood from the table. "Let's go outside."

"But, I thought you hated the cold?" Goten questioned, pushing his cocoa to the side. It was starting to cool.

"I do," he agreed, scratching the back of his head with a sheepish grin. "But, we wouldn't wanna get in trouble for stealin' the remote, now would we?" he asked, pulling it from behind his back. Goten opened his mouth to speak, to ask his father how in the world he knew his mother would search for it (or how he'd gotten it in the first place), but he immediately closed it with a shake of his head, pushing away from the table.

It'll be our secret, the Saiyan sent him telepathically with a round of laughter, placing the remote on the table.

"So, wanna tell me what really happened?" Goku finally asked, balancing his axe on his right shoulder. He knew just as much as the next person that he could easily chop down a tree with just the tip of his finger, something he'd done on numerous occasions, but these days, he'd been opting for more… primitive ways of doing things. It took more time, yes, but it gave him a challenge.

Goten shoveled some snow with his boot, sinking into his scarf. "Well, it was, like you said, an accident," Goten said with an awkward laugh. "A really big accident."

Goku hummed, but a smile found its way on his lips. "Well, how 'bout that… Don't worry though, Goten. It'll all work out."

"How do you know that?" Goten asked, digging his hands into his pockets.

Goku shrugged. "I don't."

Goten almost threw a snowball at his father's head, but he knew that the Saiyan was only trying to cheer him up. It was working, that much he knew, but for what it was worth, he really hoped his father was right.

Last night, he'd gotten into a fight with Trunks. Normally, their fights would consist of its usual, playful banter. Name-calling and small rounds of slap-boxing were an everyday thing for them. Goten blamed it on the alcohol. Somehow, Trunks' nitpicking had gone a little too far, making things 10x worse than they already were, and because Goten was pissed at his friend for seducing majority of his past girlfriends, their usual name-calling had turned into an all-out brawl, resulting in more than just damaged property. Goten knew just as well as Trunks that it wasn't his fault, but he hadn't cared then. While Goten certainly regretted the event, he had no intentions of apologizing to him just yet, if at all.

His pride wouldn't allow it, and he was afraid that if he saw the young prince again, they'd end up in another fist fight, which lead him to Mount Paozu. While he certainly had no intentions of being home, he needed to get away from West City. Capsule Corp. was a definite no, and as much as he wanted to go to Gohan's house, he couldn't bring himself listen to another one of his brother's "I-told-you-so" lectures and he definitely couldn't deal with that overbearingly nosy niece of his. Certainly, his mother was no different from Gohan in that aspect, but at least there was his father.

Although Goku was, by no means, the perfect candidate to run to unless there was a global crisis afoot, he certainly knew how to lighten a person's mood, and for that, Goten was extremely thankful.

"Dad?" Goten called out, just before Goku took a swing at a tree. Pausing in his task, Goku turned to give his son his full attention, eyebrows drawn together. "Can we train?"

Goku grinned from ear to ear, embedding his axe into the trunk. "I thought you'd never ask."