Disclaimer: Team Dragon Star does not own DBZ
Hercule looked out from behind the curtain at the crowd that had shown up just for him. Sure this was another promotional stunt before the next tournament but he couldn't help but feel excited for it. No matter what he did, these people loved him for it and in turn he loved them back. For weeks, months even years he would continue to do so in order to entertain his fans.
"Telephone for you sir," stated a nearby attendant holding the mobile device in his hand.
"Who is it?" demanded Hercule, unhappy about having been snapped out of his train of thought.
"They gave me no name sir," announced the attendant.
"Then tell them to get lost, I have no time for people who would merely waste my time," said Hercule as he turned away.
"Sir, they said it is about your daughter."
Hercule's attitude for the entire situation flipped as he practically stole the phone out of the man's hand and held it to his ear. "Who is this?" Hercule questioned.
"If you want to see your daughter alive again, come alone to warehouse twenty four on Satan wharf immediately,"said the voice on the line before the call was disconnected, leaving Hercule standing there stunned as his brain rapidly tried to process what it had just heard.
"Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for waiting," shouted the announcer as the crowd broke out in a roar of excitement. "Here he is, the undeniable champion and savior of the world, HERCULE!"
The crowd continued to shout out as they waited for their hero to come bursting out into the open from behind the curtain, his hands held up in victory poses as he basked in all his glory. Yet seconds passed before a minute as the roar of the crowd turned to curious whispers.
The announcer had no real idea what had happened and apologized over the microphone as he popped his head behind the curtain, possibly to see whether or not Hercule was doubled over in pain with a stomach bug or something. Little did he know that the man in question had long since left the building.
"Where...where am I?" questioned Videl as her eyes flickered open. Yet it did little use in the darkened room, even with her eyes fully open all she could see was the darkness surrounding her. She tried to lift her arms but she could feel the tightness of rope binding them to the back of the chair she was sitting upon. Videl tried to kick her legs but they too were tied to the frame of the chair and she only managed to shuffle the furniture back and forward slightly.
"Damn it," she cursed as she tried to recall how she had ended up in this predicament. She recalled being knocked unconscious with gas but only after her friend had suffered the same fate. Her eyes went wide as she quickly recalled that one of her friends was likely caught up in the same situation. Who was it though?
"Shit!" she yelled hoping that somebody could hear her as she tried to recall just who she had been with before this had all occurred. She could remember the walk from school and small details but the gas still clouded her mind somewhat and she couldn't help but worry if her friend found themselves in a very familiar situation.
"Alright I'm here where are you!" shouted Hercule as he entered the warehouse like he had been instructed. Nobody answered as the world champion stepped forward boldly. Had it been any other circumstance he would have likely cowered and made sure that he wasn't going to get ambushed but with his daughter's life on the line he could risk such a thing. "Umm...hello, is this the right place?"
"Welcome mister Satan," responded a static voice from the speakers set up in the roof of the complex.
"Where are you? Show yourself!" demanded Hercule.
"Unlike you who is no stranger to a crowd, I prefer to hide myself in the shadows."
"Then what do you want with me, money, land?" questioned Hercule wondering just who this person was and what their motive was.
"Any other human may be interested in such meager things but I have no use for what you have to offer."
"Then why drag me all the way out here," shouted Hercule, his rage increasing.
"For you to make a choice."
"A choice?" repeated Hercule.
"Step over to the window and you will see two triggers sitting on the table,"instructed the voice. Slightly unnerved, Hercule did as he was told and looked at the two devices that were sitting in front of him. "These two triggers are connected to are large number of explosives in the two small storage sheds you can see from the window. Before we proceed any further allow me to tell you a story."
"What kind of fool are you playing me for?" shouted Hercule continuously getting frustrated.
"You asked before what I wanted and I shall tell you. During the first round of the tournament where you won your championship you defeated my son, but calling it a fight would be a bit of an overstatement. You humiliated him, basking in the glory as you posed for the cameras at every chance you got. My son saw himself as inferior and knew that he wouldn't be able to compete with you until he proved himself. Sadly he went about this in a different way and turned his attention to fighting your daughter."
"So this is revenge!"
"If you let me finish I will explain. He couldn't simply challenge your daughter to a fight so he went about it a different way and robbed a jewelry store knowing that your daughter would make an appearance and he would get his chance to prove himself. His plan did not go well and he was sentenced to several years in prison for his crimes. He didn't last two weeks as he hung himself from embarrassment."Hercule remained silent at that statement as he continued to listen to the voice. "It is through the actions of yourself and your daughter that my son is dead."
"So what does that have to do with leading me out here?" asked Hercule.
"I'm not the kind of guy who would simply kill your daughter to get petty revenge, such a thing would be too simple. There's still a chance that you will be reunited with her in the next couple of minutes. All you would have to do is press the left trigger."
"Why tell me this?" questioned Hercule preventing himself from pressing the device right there and then.
"Because in doing so you will rob some parents of the life of their child."Hercule simply stood there dumbfounded as the voice continued. "See now is where we get to the interesting part. You have thirty seconds to decide whether or not the life of your daughter is worth more than the life of her friend. Will you be able to live with yourself knowing that she is still alive because you took the life of someone she knows? Failure to pick a trigger will result in both sheds will go up in flames and two lives will be extinguished today. I'd hurry and make your decision, you only have eighteen seconds left."
Hercule stared at the two triggers in front of him and for a moment wondered whether or not this was all some elaborate prank, that the walls were going to come down revealing an audience that simply wanted to see what he would do in such a situation. No. This was real, Videl's life was on the line and only he could be the one to make sure that she would come home tonight. But could he really live with himself knowing that his daughter was alive for the sole reason that her friend was dead? Would the morally correct thing to do would allow both of the teenagers to suffer a horrendous fate so that no blood would be spilled on his own hands?
"Ten seconds mister Satan."
Cementing his resolve, Hercule couldn't help but let the tears flow from his eyes as he reached down and grabbed a trigger. His actions would cause people to hate him and others to love him but that didn't comfort him in the slightest. "I'm sorry Videl," he muttered through sobbing breaths as he squeezed the trigger.
The result was instantaneous as an explosion shook the foundations of the warehouse quickly followed by the sound of a car screeching away but Hercule paid little attention as he rushed to the exit. Having just made the toughest decision of his life all surroundings seemed as if they didn't exist as he paid sole attention to the smoke in the sky rising up from the shed he had destroyed.
And the life he had taken.
Turning the final corner on the wharf he came to his destination as he looked at two sheds, one standing perfectly upright like nothing had happened while the other was a burning wreck consisting of twisted metal, fire and undoubtedly blood and burning flesh. Hercule merely paused as he looked at the chaos, unable to find any strength to turn his attention away from the blaze as the heat dried up his eyes. As soon as it became too unbearable he made his way towards the other returning his view to the carnage as tears swelled in his eyes.
His grip on the handle of the shed felt cold as he realized that the person inside could have perished in a similar way that the other had had he not had the courage to pull the trigger. What would they think of him though, was it truly worth it? Was there anymore that he could have done?
Opening the door the person inside tried to shield themselves from the blinding light but with their arms tied behind their back it was impossible to do so. "Dad?" questioned Videl as she barely recognized her father from the afro adorning his head.
"Sweet pea," said Hercule in return as he moved forward and undid the bindings that held Videl in place. Only now that there was light in the shed was Videl able to see the explosives that surrounded her and the fear was immediately written all over her face. The entire building had shaken less than a minute earlier and what had felt like an explosion had gone off. Once the rope was removed she was quickly embraced in a hug by Hercule but she paid little attention to that as her eyes focused on the destruction that she could see outside the door.
Hercule, seeming to understand his daughter's feelings simply allowed her to walk forward ad he released his grip on her. There was nothing he could say, nothing he could do to help his daughter. Undoubtedly she already understood what had happened, her mind was likely rushing through every possibility. "I'm sorry, there was nothing I could do," said Hercule feeling that it was more than nothing as Videl stared at the carnage before her. Her eyes glanced downwards and noticed the blond hair that was mixed in with the debris before she dropped to her knees.
In an instant she could remember what had happened, how Sharpner had had to go to his boxing training, how Gohan had wanted to head home to play with his brother and Erasa...
"ERASA!" shouted Videl at the top of her lungs as her fingers clawed at the ground as she prayed that this was somehow a dream. "NO NO NO NO NO ERASA NOOOOOOOO!"
It couldn't be, it just couldn't be.
Erasa's laugh, her chatty nature, her smile.
Videl's wail pierced the skies as she called out Erasa's name constantly as her tears rained down her face. Hercule could only stand by watching his daughter, knowing that because she was captured her best friend was dead.
He was to blame as well, it was his hand that had taken the life of the blonde and he knew that Videl may never forgive him for what he had done.
"Videl?" came a petite voice from nearby which caused the Satan heiress to turn her attention towards the sound to find her blonde friend staring at her from behind the corner of a nearby building.
"Erasa!" shouted Videl as she charged forward, stumbling twice before reaching her friend and embracing her in a fierce hug. The tears of sadness were quickly replaced with tears of joy, the thought of Erasa being dead quickly fading from her mind. Never again did she want to think of such horrendous thoughts.
"But, how?" questioned Hercule standing nearby in disbelief having fully believed that he ha killed the blonde haired girl standing before him. Had it all been an elaborate ruse all along?
"I can answer that," stated another voice from nearby as the body of the man who had pulled this stunt was tossed at the feet of Hercule, the quivering mess seemingly having wet himself at some point recently.
"Gohan?" questioned Videl as she saw the mysterious teen from her school.
"He was the one who saved me," explained Erasa. "He got me out of there just before it blew up and then quickly rushed off, to get this guy apparently."
"I saw them take both of you and put you in those sheds," explained Gohan, making up the whole thing as he went. In actuality he had been flying home when he had felt Videl's ki drop and knew that something could potentially be wrong. "When I was sure the coast was clear so that I wouldn't get caught I rescued Erasa knowing that you could probably handle yourself longer than she could."
Little did he know that if Hercule had taken a different course of action both he and Erasa would have watched their friend die.
"But then how did your shed blow up and not mine?" asked Videl before her attention to her father.
"Well...the thing about that sweet pea is..." stammered Hercule, who while relieved that all had turned out okay realized that he still had a lot of explaining to do. Perhaps the true horror had only just begun.
Thank you for reading. This is part of a Halloween competition and if you believe this deserves a prize, please fav and review.