This story is describing Bulma's reaction to when she found out Trunks had been killed by Cell. Slightly AU but just go along with it :-)

Hope you enjoy it!

DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN DRAGON BALL Z OR ANY OF THE CHARACTERS


Clarity


She supposed she had felt it: a twinge in her chest, a cold feeling descending over her body, as if the sun had disappeared suddenly from the sky. As soon as she had this feeling she returned to Capsule Corp., wanting to be alone. The camera had gone out so watching the television coverage of the battle with Cell was useless. It had made Bulma furious anyway; they kept on harping on about this Hercule guy or whatever his name was. Bulma had wanted to yell at the screen. It was her son and her - well, Vegeta, that was fighting for the planet, risking their own lives to save it.

As she thought this she glanced over at her son. Baby Trunks was asleep in his crib, peacefully dozing. He must have tired himself out. All day he had been fussy, whimpering and whining. Bulma knew why. It wasn't because his nappy needed changing or he was hungry; no, he was nervous because he could feel ki of the warriors. Her son was no fool; he knew there was a battle going on. She didn't touch him, not wanting to disturb her son from sleep.

She hadn't gone to her parents, who were in the living room. Instead she had brought baby Trunks and herself to her lab on the ground floor. She had tried to distract herself, but it was no good. Her mind kept going to the battle and what was happening. She was in her lab because she knew if Trunks or Vegeta wanted her, they would come down here to find her.

Part of her was hoping that they wouldn't need to find her.

She stared at her son. He did look like Vegeta: when he was mad he wore the same scowl on his face, like a monarch denied his rights, and his skin was darker than her pale colour. He had her hair though, and her beautiful blue eyes. She was glad of that; she often thought her eyes were her best feature. No one could ever ignore her big blue eyes staring up at them.

No, her son was beautiful. She knew he would go far. He would be smart like her, and strong like his daddy...

As usual when she was looking at Trunks, her mind strayed to Vegeta. He was strange, that one. Sometimes when she was furious at him or when she simply couldn't find him, she berated herself for being so foolish. How could she have been so stupid to have a fling with Vegeta, of all people? Of course, it wasn't a fling. It had meant to be just for one night, to soothe the need that rose every time he walked into a room. But their "fling" had lasted a lot longer than one night. During the three year wait for the androids Bulma and Vegeta had slept together plenty of times. Bulma understood why she was attracted to him - he was good looking if you could ignore his hair, and she was often attracted to guys that were no good for her (she dated Yamcha for years, but in the back of her mind she always knew they were too different to make it work). But she didn't understand why he wanted her. He was the Prince of Saiyans, too important for some mediocre human girl. Yet sometimes he had come to seek her out.

Previously she had only had sex with Yamcha. Sex with Vegeta was an entirely different thing. She thought Yamcha was wild, rugged, which was why she had been attracted to him in the first place. But Vegeta was animalistic. Having sex with him was always exciting; all he had to do was touch her and she would become aroused. It was an experience she had never felt before.

But she didn't know where she stood with him. She'd had the stupid notion that when she was pregnant Vegeta would be different: this was his son, the next heir to the Saiyan throne. Surely he would be interested. But no. Vegeta had barely treated her any differently to when she wasn't pregnant, except he stopped sleeping with her. Since that was the basis of their relationship, it was like they were strangers again.

The only time Vegeta had shown any sign of affection was after she gave birth to Trunks. It had been agonising; Bulma had always considered herself a little stronger than most women - she was certainly smarter than them - but giving birth to a Saiyan baby was the worse pain she had ever felt in her life. She could barely remember how long it took, but the pain had ripped through her body like bullets, one after another. In all her life she would never be able to match that pain. But thankfully Trunks had been born healthy, and apparently it had only taken five hours.

Exhausted, she had fallen fast asleep in bed with Trunks next to her. He too had gone straight to sleep, as if he was tuckered out too. Bulma slept extremely deeply. She was unsure how long she stayed asleep, but woke suddenly. It was as if she had sensed his presence; maybe hanging around with guys who had sense the power of a moth was rubbing off on her. She saw him as soon as she opened her eyes. Vegeta was standing next to the bed, gazing down at Trunks.

With her breath caught in her mouth, Bulma stared at him. His expression was, as always, unreadable. She felt a surge of irritation: he was staring at his first born son, his only child, and he couldn't even dredge up a smile? She opened her mouth, readying an insult, when he turned his face to her. Blue met brown and Bulma bit her lip, for once in her life unable to speak. Quite suddenly, Vegeta's face changed. It wasn't quite a smile, but the corners of his mouth were tilted upwards. It was as close to one as she would get, and with a genuine smile on her own face she fell back down on the mattress and went back to sleep.

Despite that moment between them, Bulma was still unsure. When she had woken up the next morning she found out that he had taken the spaceship and left without a word to anyone. Bulma hadn't even known whether he was coming back to take on the androids, though she guessed he would. She had been furious with him, forcing her aggression down by looking after her baby. He hadn't even seen her when he returned. She knew he didn't communicate, but she could probably have gotten more out of a rock.

The heiress leant back in her chair, her hand rubbing a spot on the back of her head. She always did this when she was thinking deeply about something, but it was a bad habit that she was trying to stop. Not today though. The truth was she had no idea what would happen with Vegeta. If Cell was defeated (please Kami) then she didn't know whether Vegeta would even stay on this planet. Would he want to stay with her? Or would he grab the nearest space ship and race off? How did she know that she would even see him again?

A little bell chimed cheerily, signalling a person's arrival. Bulma swung round on her chair, her heart suddenly pounding. As if he heard her thoughts, Vegeta entered.

There was something different about him. He had bruises and scratches on his face, and he was definitely stiffer as he walked. But he was alive! Bulma stood, feeling a flush in her cheeks. "You're back," she breathes. She pauses for a second, the realisation dawning that the battle was over. "What happened? Did you win?"

Vegeta dark eyes lifted to hers. "Yes," he said. "Gohan defeated Cell – with a little help."

"Gohan? He defeated Cell?" Bulma couldn't imagine that cute little boy being strong enough to take down such a monster. "What about Goku?"

"Dead," Vegeta said shortly.

Bulma shrank down on the inside. Goku was their hero; the cheerful warrior who could put a smile on anyone's face, who wanted nothing more than a challenging fight. The thought of him dead hurt. But at the same time she would be lying if she didn't expect it. Goku was always back and forth to the other side. Always in the middle of it, she thought, remembering that cute little boy with affectionate.

"So what? Are we going to wish him back with the dragon balls? Haven't you done that already?"

Vegeta's shoulders were hunched; he looked exhausted. She wanted to have him take a shower and tuck him into bed. "The Namek was killed too. The dragon balls have gone."

That revelation stunned Bulma, hit her like a punch to the gut, leaving her gasping for air. The dragon balls are gone?! What would happen now? They used the dragon balls for everything. Whenever they had a problem they used them; if someone died before their time they could wish them back. What would they do without them?

Tension began to fill up in her chest; no, not tension – panic. She placed a hand on her chest, rubbing it anxiously. At first she didn't realise why she felt so anxious, why her eyes were looking behind Vegeta's shoulder. She didn't immediately know why she was scared. The baby sniffled behind her.

"Where's Trunks?" she asked.

Vegeta's was looking straight at her. "We're going to go to Namek. Dende reckons that we could use those dragon balls again."

"Where is he?" Bulma's voice rose and breathing became difficult.

"We can get there faster now. Krillin and Gohan are planning to go. I think its best that I stay-"

"Vegeta!" Bulma's voice had always made his eardrums feel like they were about to burst, and this time is no exception. As usual it had worked. Vegeta shut up. She now understood the reason he had looked so sober, like a man that had been stripped down to nothing. "What happened to Trunks?"

He said nothing. Then he turned away, and she saw his jaw working. "Cell killed him."

It was those words that finally broke Bulma. She recoiled as if she had been shot and her hand flew to her mouth. Trunks... Trunks. "But – how?" she whispered.

She was barely aware of Vegeta talking, but somehow she managed to understand. Cell had appeared out of nowhere, when they thought he had been defeated. Like a coward he had shot Trunks while hidden in the smoke. It had gone right through his chest. He hadn't stood a chance.

She can't believe it. Trunks, her son – dead. She may not have given birth to him, not technically, in some strange time-travel way he was her son. Her boy, that teenager, was gone. "No," she whispered. "He can't be dead."

"We'll wish him back." Vegeta's voice was steely, filled with determination. "I will inform those idiots that if they do not wish him back with the very first wish then I will hunt them down and make sure they regret it."

The words sounded as if they were coming from far away. "But what if we can't?" she asked. "He's not from this time – what if there's some stupid rule that doesn't allow you do wish a person back from another time line? What if they think he's already alive?"

His hands gripped Bulma's forearms. "Bulma," he growled. "He will be fine. We'll get him back."

It was those words that did it. Her legs went weak and, the tears flowing freely now, she slid to the floor. She was crying for her son: the son who had nobly come to this timeline to save them; the boy that had lived his life in fear of being found and killed; of losing not only his father but the mentor he loved like one; who had been rejected by his father in this one. All of a sudden she hated Vegeta, hated him with a passion; she hated Cell, even hated Chi-Chi because even though her husband was gone her son was still alive. She wanted to bring the world to its knees because of her pain, but all she could do was cry a river.

Vegeta's legs were the only thing that she could see, and through blurry eyes they looked like poles. She couldn't think. She, the brilliant heiress, who had brains as well as beauty, couldn't think. Her emotions were going in overdrive: hate, anger, and incredible sadness. They surged round her body. She kept to the floor, unable to stop the tears.

She didn't know what she expected Vegeta to do. Leave probably; move away from her as fast as she could. She hadn't had time to recognise that he had said "we'll get him back". She felt him kneel down next to her. In a strange detached way she understood how strange this was, to have Vegeta stay with her. After a hesitating moment she felt his arms slowly come round her. Bulma always loved his arms, how strong they were and how protected she felt when she was in them (though that was rare). But he held her now, pulling her against his chest and allowing her to sob into him. He said nothing. He didn't try to reassure her. That's not what she wanted right now. Funnily enough he was giving her what she needed. He was being there for her. He placed his chin on the top of her head, securing her close to him, and let her cry.

Despite the fogginess in her brain she had an epiphany; a moment of pure clarity. He would be there for her. He would always be there for her. He would never admit it, but he loved her. She didn't need him to say it. He was saying it now. The Prince of Saiyans didn't hug people. He didn't console a grieving mother. She was different. She was special.

He wasn't going to leave her. She would be with him. For better, for worse, they would be together.

She couldn't feel the relief then, but she would.

Their story ended happily. Gohan and Krillin went to Namek and made three wishes. Goku didn't return, which was typical of him. But Trunks did. The dragon didn't have a problem with bringing him back to life. Surprisingly it was happy too. Having Trunks dead in this time upset the balance of nature. To Bulma's relief (and Vegeta's, though he would never admit it) the boy was brought back from the dead. He was able to return to his own timeline, happy and healthy.

Bulma and Vegeta ended up living happily ever after too. They shared the same bed ever since that night. They had another child, a little girl who they named Bra. Their lives became filled with the daily routines of school runs, big family dinners, hot tempered arguments. There were also threats to the universe and explosions caused by some of the gadgets Bulma was working, and the gravity chamber malfunctioned now and again. But how ordinary was a life with a Saiyan and a genius going to be?

Their son Trunks worked in the company and eventually took over from his mother. He didn't marry for a long time, but the girl he chose could always make him laugh. Bra graduated from a top university when she was sixteen, modelled and jetted off across the world. She was married three times before she finally found love with Goten. Things are usually in right in front of your face. Vegeta wasn't best pleased, but what could he say?

Bulma and Vegeta never married. They didn't need to. They stayed together all their lives. Unlike Yamcha who was eyeing up other girls constantly, Vegeta never strayed. Not even so much as a glance.

He never told her he loved her.

He didn't need to. He said it in his own way, every day.


Hours to make. Seconds to comment.

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