Gohan groaned as he sat up in his bed. Rubbing his eyes he looked around the latest hotel room he repeatedly found himself in. Eying a half full beer on the counter, he quickly downed it before collecting his clothes up from the floor and looking at the girl laying under the covers on the bed. Ever since being kicked out of home by his mother and shunned by most of the z fighters he had spent many mornings in this situation. He eyed the blonde woman curiously, still unsure of how they had came together. He'd been out drinking his troubles away one night before spotting her doing the same, he had decided to join her and one thing had lead to another. That was several months ago and while they had a great understanding of each other, neither felt anything for each other besides the physical attraction. They both understood that and had managed an arrangement of sorts where they would 'cheer each other up' when it was needed. He was still watching her when she began to stir and looked at him.
"How come you're always up before me Gohan?" She asked as she wrapped the blankets around her naked form.
"Good morning to you too 18." He said sarcastically before throwing her clothes to her and walking to the bathroom. Staring at himself in the mirror he admired himself for a short while before picking up a razor to shave. Ever since the cell games Gohan had thrown himself into his training thanks to a little motivation. Having achieved super Saiyan 3 and acquired an array of battle wounds, including a scar on his cheek and forehead, he couldn't help but agree that he was a badass. Having finished his shaving he said his goodbyes before heading off to one of only two places that still welcomed him, Capsule Corp.
It had come as a rather large shock to him when Vegeta had declared his respect for him and told him he was welcome with Bulma and himself. Even giving him the rank of a Saiyan elite in exchange for mutually beneficial training. Just a few short months after the cell games chi chi, he refused to call her 'mother', had kicked him out during one of her bad mood swings from the pregnancy. Blaming him for why Goku didn't come back, that he was ashamed of his son. For a while, Gohan had believed it and fell into depression. The glares of Krillin, Tien, Chiaoutzu, Yamcha and master Roshi hadn't helped either. One day he had been running out of homes to knock on and finally summoned the courage to knock on Bulmas door. After explaining the situation to her she had hugged him tightly and told him that he was always welcome at Capsule Corp. Vegeta had stared on silently and as Bulma left called Gohan to join him in the gravity room.
"So then brat, what's your plan?" Gohan was quite surpised that Vegeta had taken an interest in his life and mumbled incoherently before looking away in shame. "Brat I know that your angsty as all hell right now but you need to get over yourself, you didn't kill that clown Kakarot."
"How can you say that?! He died having to bail me out of my mistake! If I had listened to him then he wouldn't have died!"
Vegeta stared him down for a moment, carefully choosing his words. "Gohan," he started, instantly gaining his attention, "I will tell you this once and once only. Kakarot got himself killed."
"Kakrot got himself killed because he was a coward. He claims to be the protector of this planet yet he sent his son to fight his battle for him."
"But I was the only one strong enough."
"You were stronger, yes but you only won because of that new form of yours, something which Kakarot himself could have accomplished himself had he been willing. You said it yourself that he was far too relaxed during the lead up to the battle with cell and didn't use the full time in the chamber when he could have. He could have gained that new form while he was in there and fought his own battle and yet he chose not too and dishonoured himself by sending you in his place. Even afterwards he chose the cowards way out and chose to remain dead instead of fulfilling his duty as a husband and father, claiming that 'it was better that way'. Tell me child, ever since Raditz has he done much besides training?"
"W-well no but-"
"Did he take days of to look after you?"
"Uhm well...mister Piccolo did..."
"Most importantly though tell me this child, didn't he seem rather rushed to start a new adventure in the afterlife?"
Gohan stared at the ground as he remembered how his father had cut of all complaints with a weak excuse before saying goodbye again. Again. That part struck him deeply. This was not the firs time he had left him. After the battle with Frieza, Goku had dissapeared into space for a year and a half to train, refusing to be wished back. His guilt was steadily becoming anger. Anger at his father for abandoning him. Anger at his mother for betraying him. Anger at the z fighters for hating him. Swiftly followed by happiness. Happiness at Bulma for loving him. Happiness at Vegeta for respecting him. Happiness at Piccolo for raising him.
"Gohan, you have demonstrated extreme courage where your father did not. You have surpassed possibly every Saiyan in existence and for that I respect you. As your prince I bestow upon you the title of super elite. A first class warrior of the Saiyan race. Do not dissapoint me young one." With that the prince of all saiyans left the room to leave Gohan to his thoughts.
"Big brother!" Shouted Trunks as he came running to the door, attacking Gohan with his strongest hug. While he knew they were not related by blood, the bond they shared was close enough to be his real brother.
"Hey squirt, what you up to today?" Said Gohan as he patted the small boy on the head.
"Not much, dads been shouting cause the gravity room broke again. Oh I almost forgot! Mum wanted to talk to you about something. C'mon she's waiting!"
Gohan became rather curious, what could Bulma want? He entered the living room to see Bulma sitting patiently with a brochure in her hand. "Hello Gohan." She said with an exaggerated smile. 'Uh oh, this must be evil.' Thought Gohan. "What's up Bulma?"
"We'll I've been doing some thinking and I've decided it's time you went to orange star high school in satan city."
Gohan stared dumbstruck. "What?!"
"You need to get a job eventually Gohan and although you're a genius, no one will take you seriously if you never did high school."
"But I'm a warrior! I have no business in a school with all those stupid humans. Besides what about my training with prince Vegeta!"
"I agree with the woman actually." Said Vegeta, walking out of the shadows. "Go socialise with the morons and find a mate, you're starting to come of age brat and you could use an actual mate. Not the fuck buddy you currently have."
Gohan looked away embarrased at the comment about 18 and thought about complaining before he caught sight of his princes glare at him. "Fine, I'll do it. When do I start?"
"First thing Monday morning, I already have it set up for you. Firstly we need to go over some ground rules. Make sure you pass everything well however I doubt that will be difficult, no killing people although I understand that you won't take back talk. Also no showing up drunk, you drink enough as it is."
Gohan rolled his eyes at Bulmas rules knowing that they weren't exactly hard to follow. Now though he needed to blow off steam and he could see prince Vegeta was itching for a fight.
Elsewhere, a young boy had just finished his studies and was roaming around the attic looking for something interesting when he came across a picture of a boy he hadn't seen before. "Mommy? Who's this boy?" He asked, handing her the picture. She started to tear up at the sight of him. "That's your big brother Goten."
"Really? Where is he?"
"He's not here anymore."
"Because mommy made a big mistake Goten."