Disclaimer: TDS does not own DBZ
Beads of sweat dripped down both Vegeta and Trunks' faces as they duelled in the high intensity gravity that the room produced. Several years had passed since the confrontation with the pink monstrosity known as Buu and while life had gone back to normal, the memories still plagued him of how even when he had used all of his energy in one final attempt to rid the world of Buu by himself he had fallen miserably short. It had all been up to Kakarot in the end which infuriated the prince to push himself past his own limitations.
As for Trunks, he and Goten had continued to grow in their friendship as years went on. Sure there had been some rough patches along the way but they were determined to best each other at everything they did ranging from races to tests of strength. It had only been a couple of months earlier that the violet haired boy had turned thirteen years old and as such had been suspect to a very detailed conversation about Saiyan puberty, something he would rather forget. That being said, he was currently missing his long time friend who had been whisked away to New Namek with both Goku and Chichi on a holiday while Gohan and Videl were on their honeymoon halfway across the globe.
The wedding had been one of the biggest ones in recent times, with the paparazzi delving into the mysterious man who had captured the heart of Videl Satan. When news first got out about the two of them dating, many had thought that it wouldn't last, but as the press dove deeper and deeper into the story they discovered that Gohan was actually the grandfather of the Ox King and hence royalty in his own right. As such, when the day of the wedding was announced every news tabloid imaginable jumped at the scenes, desperate to get the inside scoop while other predicted that it was merely an impulsive move made by two young people. On the day of the wedding, Hercule Satan had nearly reached the boiling point when he ordered every camera on the premises to be destroyed to allow his daughter some privacy. Although Vegeta would never admit it in that one moment a glimmer of respect had formed for the afro haired champion.
A slight misstep caused Vegeta to lose balance for only a fraction of a second, but from years of honed training Trunks was able to capitalise on the situation, driving his knee into his father's stomach before delivering a vicious haymaker across the side of Vegeta's face, causing a small amount of blood to spray across the polished tiles. Vegeta quickly snapped back his head, a small smirk on his face filled with pride that his son was able to quickly strike upon such a small mishap. The bout continued for a short while later before the door was pushed open, the gravity immediately changing back to normal as the failsafe was activated. "I'm heading out now Vegeta," said Bulma as she walked into the chamber, a small bundle of laughter held tightly within her arms. "While I'm out I want you to take Bra to the park, can you handle that?"
"Of course I can woman," stated Vegeta as he washed the sweat off his brow with a nearby towel before reaching for his little princess only for Bulma to pull her out of arms reach.
"Shower first, I don't want your daughter recognising you by stench alone," complained Bulma.
"You say that after sucking on your little death sticks all day," mumbled Vegeta under his breath. It had been many years earlier when Vegeta had approached Bulma after she had been working in the workshop for several hours and was then enjoying the satisfaction of placing her lips around a cigarette. Vegeta had approached her but as soon as he had gotten within a few feet he had collapsed, the poisonous chemicals in the tobaccos smoke seemingly attacking his Saiyan genes. While cigarettes had long term effects on human health, on Saiyans it was almost instantaneous; draining him of his strength. Since then, whenever Bulma had felt the urge to light up a smoke, she made sure that Vegeta was nowhere within the vicinity and as such she had managed to cut down significantly on her smoking intake.
"Anyways, I'll be in a conference meeting for roughly two hours," explained Bulma.
"What do those imbeciles want with you now?" asked Vegeta why the board of Capsule Corp so desperately needed the time for his woman.
"Actually, this is a meeting with a different bunch of 'imbeciles,'" Bulma stated. "The heads of several pharmaceutical companies have gathered and have asked a meeting with me."
"So it's about that little pill you mass produced then," stated Vegeta in return.
"That little pill, as you so aptly put, will help strengthen the human immune system to nearly triple its usual capacities. It will save the lives of thousands and increase the lifespan..."
"I get it, I get it," said Vegeta cutting off Bulma before she continued to go off on a line he didn't want to pay attention to. "Trunks, I'll be taking your sister to the park for two hours. If I believe for a second that you've so much as stepped foot outside of the gravity chamber you'll wish they'd built a war bunker strong enough to hide you from my fury." Trunks didn't respond to his father's threat but looked to his mother for support on the topic.
"You know the rules, there'll be time to do your homework later. Remember to keep the place in one condition, we have a school class coming here tomorrow for a demonstration," said Bulma before revealing a piece of paper from underneath Bra which she slyly handed to her son without Vegeta noticing as the Prince of Saiyans walked towards the bathroom. Ensuring the coast was clear, Trunks had a peak at the paper and saw a number combination with several words scribbled underneath.
Had the apprentice create an easy workout for you, take care
"Cheers mum," mouthed Trunks as he returned to the isolation of the gravity chamber, closing the door behind him. The apprentice that had been mentioned on the piece of paper which had been scrunched up and placed within his pocket was referencing the man that Bulma had hired when she had had Bra. With her workload now stretching to several departments, she didn't have the time to manage everything her company threw at her as well as looking after both her children. As such the apprentice had been selected from thousands who had applied, his resume seemingly impressing Bulma to such an extent that she didn't believe a prior interview was necessary. For Trunks, he was happy that Bulma had extra time to both herself and to her family. Vegeta's perception of the additional work member was of a different variety, but Trunks rarely pried into details.
As he walked through the gravity chamber, he noted one of the apprentices first inventions to grace the floors of the household in the form of a small cleaning device. It wasn't anything special, just a little robot on wheels that came in once the gravity was returned to normal and cleaned up spillages such as blood and sweat. At the moment it was cleaning the small amount of blood that had escaped Vegeta's lips, but with a sensor inbuilt realising that another person had entered the immediate vicinity it quickly stopped cleaning and with a small opening appearing off the side, made its way to its hiding position where it would be safe from both the increase in gravity and any stray energy blasts.
A small smile graced Trunks' lips as the gap in the wall was sealed over, knowing that instead of his mother having spent hours over something so simple she had instead spent the time playing with Bra. Pulling out the paper, he inserted the combination into the machine, the program flashing up on a panel in front of him. "Doesn't look too bad, he knows his stuff," mused Trunks as he pressed the 'Start' button, the machine whizzing into life as the gravity began to increase.
With a fresh set of clothes on, Vegeta walked through the park with Bra sitting atop his shoulders as he held a protective grasp on her feet. "Butafwy," she said as she pointed out to one of the flying insects flying nearby. She clapped her hands several times as if trying to coo the creature into coming closer.
Vegeta was impressed by his daughter's perception of the creatures around her, knowing that other children roughly the same age were only able to recognise creatures such as dogs and only through the fact that their parents probably owned the animal. While tucking her in at night, Vegeta had no problem showing a softer side of himself by showing her pictures of animals in a children's book. While he had shown no such kindness to Trunks, that was mainly due to the fact that there were several rampaging androids that needed to be prioritised. Had things been different, even he didn't know the answers. Truly it had only been when he had knocked out his son before confronting Buu had he realised just how much his children meant to him.
"Dadda, down," commanded Bra and Vegeta had a brief chuckle about what side of the family that his daughter inherited that trait from. Lifting the small girl from his shoulders, he gently placed her down on the ground before she started chasing after the butterfly she had previously spotted. Vegeta watched over his daughter protectively as he took note of everybody else occupying the park at that time. Old battle strategies he had been taught as a child made him take notice of every vantage point and where unseen assailants could be waiting to strike. While he knew there was nobody even remotely strong enough to so much as consider the thought they could so much as touch a hair on his daughter's head without being viciously assaulted, he knew never to be too cautious in any situation.
His gaze shifted towards the top of a distant building where he knew that Bulma would be just about to enter a conference meeting while he got to enjoy time with his daughter. It seemed that all was good.
"Miss Briefs, thank you for coming in at such short notice."
"My pleasure, but please refrain from calling me Miss Briefs, just Bulma is fine," replied the blue haired woman as she took a seat opposite the board members numbering six in total. She also took note that of the six present, only one of them was female whom seemed less than interested to being there.
"As you wish."
"Bulma, it has come to our attention that your latest pharmaceutical medicine is in simple terms, a wonder drug."
"I'm glad you see it that way," said Bulma with a smile but slightly confused as to why she had been brought all this way just to be told that.
"It is for that reason, we want you to strip it from the shelves."
"What!" exclaimed Bulma as she got to her feet, slamming her hands on the table.
"Please, calm down."
"I have created a drug that will improve everybody's health dramatically and you want me to take it off the market," stated Bulma still with her hands firmly pressed on the table.
In front of her, one of the men produced a packet of the tablets that had been manufactured by Capsule Corp. "Indeed, we have examined your pill over the last couple of weeks and noticed that there is seemingly no side effect we can name to list your drug as defective."
"One of these a year will help strengthen the body's immune system to the point where the rate of people catching the common cold will drop below three percent."
"Not to mention all of the other viruses and diseases that this pill helps fight against without even targeting them specifically."
"Yet you want me to take it off the market why?" asked Bulma as she took her seat again.
"From your pill alone, forty percent of the drugs we mass produce become, redundant. Our manufacturing companies will close to a halt as less and less people need to purchase medicine created from our companies."
"So basically, you're saying that with new competition on the market you're afraid your stock prices will plummet," stated Bulma, clearly understanding the hidden message in what was being said.
"It is not just us who will be affected."
"If nobody purchases our products, we will be forced to make cuts and hundreds, thousands, even possibly tens of thousands of people will lose their jobs."
"The unemployment rating will go through the roof."
"You will single handily destroy the delicate balance that we have created."
"People lose their jobs all the time, what's important is..." started Bulma only to be cut off mid-sentence.
"What's important is that you know the danger you are getting in to."
"Was...was that a threat!" exclaimed Bulma, not believing what was happening.
"Take it as more of a warning. Not everybody is easily calmed by government rebates and when they realise that you are the reason that they lost their jobs, well you can imagine what irrational men can do."
"Gentlemen, more jobs get created every day; unemployment is currently at its all time lowest not just in West City but all across the continent. If you think for one second that I believe you are not stating these for your own selfish reasons then you are wrong," claimed Bulma. Silence seemed to follow until one of the executives leant forward.
"Know this then, so long as your product is on the shelf you will be deemed as an enemy to my pharmaceutical company, the results of which you will not find beneficial."
"I second that motion."
"As do I."
Of the six executives, only one failed to raise their hand, the female member of the table, but Bulma barely took notice as she prepared her final statement.
"Look, listen," said Bulma taking control of the situation as she got to her feet. "You can come at me with lawyers, government lapdogs and anybody that you have at your disposal, but if you think for one second that I would throw away something that will benefit mankind, you are poorly mistaken."
Bulma didn't say another word as she grasped at her belongings and stormed off, slamming the meeting door behind her.
"It seems that Ms Briefs chooses not to listen to reason."
A small device was pulled out from under the table. "Then perhaps she will listen to the screams of her children."
A single button was pressed.
"Dada, ice cweem," said Bra as she pulled her father towards an ice cream vender. Vegeta smiled, feeling that a frozen treat would be a good way to end the father daughter date before taking her back home for when Bulma arrived. Yet it was him feeling the presence of two men behind him that made him cautious of the situation. Looking over his shoulder, it seemed to him that both men were trying to be inconspicuous without actually being so as they walked ever so closer to where he and Bra were.
It seemed to be that brief realisation that they had been spotted which sent the two men straight into action, one of them pulling a knife out at Vegeta while the other made a beeline straight for Bra. It took exactly point four seven of a second for both men to be on the flat of their back and several shards of the knife to be landing on the ground. Bra hadn't even noticed that two men had been trying to kidnap her at all, her sole attention on the number of ice cream flavours she could choose from.
While he knew that he would need to call the local authorities, his head twisted straight back to the household as he felt Trunks power skyrocket well past anything that he had done over the past year. While normally he would be proud at such an achievement, he quickly grabbed Bra by the hand and blasted off into the air, the confused girl quickly forgetting about the ice cream as she enjoyed the ride through the air. Having somebody attempt to steal his youngest child for whatever reason and for Trunks to power up so rapidly was not a coincidence.
In the gravity chamber, Trunks in his Super Saiyan form struggled to get up from his hands and knees, the sudden increase in pressure seemingly too much for him to handle. Everything had been going smoothly until only a minute earlier, when an extra zero got added to the gravity chambers pressure system.
A chunk of the roof tore off, crashing to the floor and indenting the tiles several feet. Trunks didn't even know the capabilities the chamber could hold but wasn't willing to find out as he crept towards the control panel, intent on switching the gravity off manually. Yet he found it difficult to even get a single finger off the ground, let alone enough of his body to move an inch forward let alone the several feet he needed to cross.
He was relieved of this duty however after several minutes, as the door to the chamber caved in with Vegeta's furious strength, bursting down the door and triggering the failsafe. As the gravity in the chamber returned to normal, Trunks relieved himself of his Super Saiyan strength and collapsed from exhaustion. Vegeta looked at his son with a wary eye before turning his attention to the control panel where several words flashed on the screen, making his eyes squint in anger.
East City Remembers