By Donny Cheng
Disclaimer: All characters portrayed in this story are the property of their respective creators and companies.
This story takes place after volume 38 of the Ranma manga and a few years after the end of DBZ. It largely overwrites most of DBGT.
Vejita grunted as he threw Trunks over his shoulder. Pain all too familiar to him coursed through his body from the action of moving his son's body. The added weight of a body in a room with the gravity four hundred times its normal strength did nothing to help. Each step he took to walk to the control panel reinforced the negative sensations on his newly acquired injuries. However, the physical pain was incomparable to the emptiness he felt.
He hadn't really been surprised. His expectations still did not prepare him for the awful truth, though. His son was not a Saiyajin.
When he reached the panel, he proceeded to shut off the gravity control mechanism, returning the weight in the room to its normal status. He sighed as the strain on his muscles decreased, but the emptiness persisted, making the relief that usually followed one of his workouts impossible attain this time. As he walked out of the room, he glanced over his shoulder at the purpled haired boy. The hair was further proof of the impurity of the blood. Physical evidence to match the evidence of the soul. One that was clearly not Saiyajin.
The faint glimmer of hope had left as fast as it had come. It had been foolish of him to expect otherwise from his son. Second transformation or not, Trunks was still Trunks; half-human.
He had pitied his son, since Trunks had not felt the same bloodlust he, Kakaroto, and Gohan had when they transformed and tasted the power of the Super Saiyajin for the very first time. Never would the boy know the feeling of being so alive. Every bone, every muscle, every ounce of blood singing in unison as unbridled anger surged through them. Instead, Vejita grunted, the boy had became a Super Saiyajin over childish anger and promptly forgot all about the transformation the next day.
To think, Kakaroto's son, Gohan, born of peasant stock could be more of a Saiyajin than his own son. It still jarred Vejita to this day that Gohan chose to be a scholar. Though the boy did not like fighting, anyone that had seen the boy transform in the battle against Cell could not deny the fact that what they saw was a Saiyajin warrior in his full fury. A waste of potential that Trunks would never have. That thought brought him back to his previous battle with Trunks.
Bringing both of his arms down hard against the boy's back, Vejita sent Trunks speeding downward. *That should do it,* Vejita thought as the hard metal floor dented at the impact. He could already feel the telltale signs of power rising at a drastic rate, even though Trunks lay prone on the ground.
Vejita was not fooled by the stillness however, and soon, just as he thought, the body disappeared. *Up there,* he predicted as he fired a ki blast over top of him. He was surprised as he saw the touch of gold in the color of the hair out from the corner of his eye. *Already?*
The ki blast slammed into Trunks, but he didn't bat an eye as he disappeared once again. Vejita was not prepared for the second time Trunks vanished and was thus caught unawares as his son materialized right in front of him. He had not been mistaken. The boy's hair now stood up even straighter than previously and the color was definitely golden. The blankness in his eyes that indicated Trunks had lost all sense of what was going on, as rage clouded his mind. Vejita had done it. He had helped Trunks reached the next level. And now, he was going to be in a world of hurt.
He thought desperately of what to do as Trunks flew in the air in front of him. If he powered up, he would not be able to stop the next attack in time. It would be best to block or dodge whatever came and look for an opening to escape and regroup his power. However, he had sorely underestimated how much of an increase in speed and strength the new transformation awarded Trunks, as an elbow slammed into Vejita's stomach. He lost sense of where he was, as his body was thrown to the ground.
Vejita looked up to see Trunks hovering above him, as he shook off the bout of dizziness that had overcome him. A large ball of ki formed in the boy's hands. Vejita quickly formed a chi blast in response hoping to be able to deflect most of the damage. Then, all of a sudden, a light of sanity appeared in the boy's eyes, and just as quickly as the transformation took place, Trunks de-powered and fell limply out of the sky.
Vejita's emotional high also deflated as he held out his arms and caught his son's body before it hit the ground. He could hear his son muttering 'father' just before he lost all consciousness.
Vejita reached the boy's room and dropped him onto the waiting bed. The tiredness Trunks was experiencing was more likely from the effort of reaching his second transformation than from any injuries Vejita might have caused. It didn't warrant the use of the regeneration tank. Besides that, he knew Kakaroto could still be in there. This time, the thought of putting his rival into the tank did not cheer him up. Seeing that imbecile would only remind him of Gohan and what Trunks might have been. It was of small consolation that Goten was even worse compared to Trunks.
Trunks had reached the next stage in his development and would probably be able to do it again without any help. But to Vejita, it mattered little without the soul behind it. Trunks had once again proved that despite being able to transform, ultimately, his human side ruled over his soul. However, even with all of this on his mind, there was one other thought that bothered Vejita more than his son's failure as a Saiyajin. It was something he felt when he heard Trunks whisper 'father'. Relief.
Why the hell had he been relieved that Trunks never landed a blow? He wanted Trunks to strike him, didn't he? Finding no answers to that question, he stalked out of the room intent on clearing his mind the only way he knew how. Time to wake Kakaroto up.
"I figured you'd be here when I didn't find you in the tank," Vejita said as he entered the kitchen. Kakaroto's head was buried inside the refrigerator.
"Oh, Vejita," Goku said, pulling his head from out of the fridge to give his long time rival a huge grin. "You must be happy about Trunks. The power of his transformation woke me up."
Vejita grunted in answer. Kakaroto had managed to irk him again in a span of less than a minute. His abilities must have improved drastically for him to be able to penetrate the gravity room's barrier. *I knew it, he had been holding back against me recently. I'll just have to force his hand later tonight,* Vejita thought to himself.
"So you're training Trunks again? And where's your other student?" Goku asked, while he set the table, placing a setting for Vejita also, who took a seat at the counter across from him.
Vejita grunted again before replying. "No, the boy just needed a little help to reach the second level. I gave Ranma the day off while I took care of business with Trunks." Little was spoken between the two men as they quickly and efficiently polished every item on the table.
"Oh, that was good. Bulma's cooking has gotten better," Goku sighed patting his stomach happily.
"More like she's gotten more money and hired better help," Vejita said. He caught himself glancing to the door of the kitchen, looking if anyone might have been listening in on them. He shook his head and wondered if his fellow Saiyajin were laughing at him from hell.
Without another word, the two men got up and decided to find someplace relatively uninhabited.
Trunks managed to stay upright as he groggily walked to the kitchen, for once glad that he hadn't woken up in the tank that smelled so much like medicine after one of his fights with his overly aggressive father. His stomach rumbled, reminding him of his mission at hand and to get a move on. Staggering, he made it to the kitchen to find a large spread already laid out in on the table.
"Hey, Trunks. Where's dad?" Bra asked as she got the rest of the leftovers from the fridge and brought them to the table. "He ate half of what was in the fridge. Mom's going to be angry."
"I don't know. I just woke up in my room. I saw that Uncle Goku is out of the regeneration tank, so you know what that means. And if you're so worried about mom, why the food? It looks like you have the other half of the fridge on the table. Didn't you guys go out to eat?"
"Hello? That was last night. You've been out like a light since then," Pan said as she and Ranma arranged the overflowing food.
"Well don't eat all of it. I live here too, you know," Trunks said testily as he grabbed a stool and sat down.
"Boy, you're in a foul mood. I thought you'd be happy. I just looked at the computer logs for the gravity room. The power spike reading says you did it. Congratulations," Bra said, also sitting down as the last of the food was taken.
"It didn't work," Trunks mumbled quietly to himself as he remembered the look of disappointment on his father's face just before he fell into unconsciousness.
"What was that?" Ranma asked, not hearing what the older boy said.
"Nothing," Trunks replied. It was after a moment of silence and picking at his food despite how hungry he was, that he spoke again. A question had been on his mind since he talked with Ranma last. "When you train with your father, do you go all out?"
"How do you do it, Ranma?" Trunks asked. *Why can't I do it?*
Ranma shrugged. "He may be slow and fat and getting on in the years and dimwitted and..."
"Uh, I get the point," Trunks said quickly, interjecting in.
"...but he knows me very well and even when I try to fight unpredictably, he usually figures out what I'm going to do. If I don't go seriously on him, I get bruises, and later at the dojo I lived at, I would get wet."
"Now that you've mentioned it, I haven't seen the transformation Pan told me about yet," Bra said.
*Might as well get this over will,* Ranma sighed. He took his glass of water and upended it over his head. However, the usual gasps didn't come.
"That's it?" Trunks looked on disappointingly. The chi, as far as he could tell was different, more 'feminine' like that of Pan's and Bra's. However, the actual level of it was exactly the same. Definitely not a transformation like that of the Super Saiyajin.
"Hey, no fair, they're even bigger than mine!" Bra exclaimed as she reached out and touched one of Ranma's breasts.
Pan glared at Bra as the girl started to demonstrate by jutting out her chest. Pan nearly exploded when Bra took a hold of Ranma's hands to let him 'compare'. "I think Ranma can tell!"
"Well, they're for sure bigger than yours Pan," Bra smiled condescendingly.
Ranma was already on his feet as the telltale signs of battle aura manifested themselves. Life was decidedly easier since he managed to pinpoint with accuracy how much battle aura a girl had. He noticed Trunks motioning him to the doorway as the two girls argued.
"Are they always like that?" Ranma said as he and Trunks walked along the hallway.
"Only when they're both after the same things. Which you happen to be this time," Trunks snickered.
"Ack, and I thought I left all that back in Nerima." *Man, it's got to be a curse to be this good looking.*
"You don't know the half of it. It was one of the reasons I left there in the first place, along with Pop pressuring me with inheriting the dojo."
"You don't sound like you get along with your father that well. If it were me, I don't think I would mind him paying that much attention to me." *I would love it,* Trunks thought to himself. "It must be great to have him train you for the past ten years."
Ranma blinked at the wistful sound coming from Trunks's voice.
"Ranma, enough training. Time to show me what you've learned."
"O-Okay," Ranma stammered as he looked up at the towering figure over him.
Ranma blocked the first fist that was aimed at his face, but he was not fast enough to block the leg that swept him off his feet. His head rang as it was swatted to the side by his father's huge hands. His meager, trained reflexes left him suddenly as his six year old mind sought only to run away.
"What are you doing, Ranma? You could have hit me there instead of trying to flee. An opening is only for a tactical retreat when you can't win. But you can't tell that unless you actually try to hit me. Again. We'll do this all night if we have to."
Ranma's head rang as more swats from those large hands batted his head to and fro. He could dimly recall his feet running to get away in any direction, as his puffy eyelids made it hard to see where he was running. He didn't know when it happened, but something snapped inside of him and instead of fear, anger emerged. The next time he felt his father's fist against his face, he launched himself into the direction of the attack, as he could not even see where his father was anymore. The solid flesh against his knuckles indicated he had done it.
Ranma tried looking down at his hand which was still clenched in a fist, but could only see a blurred shape. He had done it. He had punched his father.
"Good job, boy. You made your father proud. We'll do some more sparring later. Don't worry, you'll get use to it."
*Get used to hitting Pop? I didn't like it when I got angry at him.*
"I don't know about that. Pop never asked me what I wanted. Well, if he asked me now, I'd probably have told him to do what he did to train me. But if he asked me earlier, when I was young... well then, I don't know anymore," Ranma said thoughtfully.
"Heh, you know what? Probably the same with me. My life isn't too bad now, and it would be a whole lot different if I asked him to train me back then. But I still wonder what would have happened if I took your route, though."
"I don't. Thinking's not my thing," Ranma grinned. He pointed to his fist. "This is. So, you up for that sparring contest now?"
"Of course," Trunks grinned.
Trunks could have won within a minute, but something about Ranma made him want the fight to last longer. He still won an hour later, but it felt much more satisfying than outright overpowering his opponent as he had done in the past Tenkaichi-budokai.
Vejita woke up and stared at the arm lying across his chest. It was not attached to his wife. He stared irritably at the sleeping Kakaroto and wondered how the idiot had managed to invade his sleeping space. Looking around, Vejita realized that somehow, he and Kakaroto had managed to knock both of themselves out during that last attack.
He sighed and wondered how angry Bulma was going to be with him when he got home. Yesterday night was supposed to be a 'celebration'. At least Kakaroto's wife will be there and lessen the blow somewhat.
Bulma and Chi-Chi rolled their eyes as their respective husbands walked in. "Chi-Chi's decided to stay a few days, since we haven't seen each other in a long time."
"Oh, Chi-Chi, you told Bulma about it? So, you pregnant?" Goku asked innocently.
"I told you to keep quiet!" Chi-Chi yelled, aghast and blushing like crazy.
Bulma raised her eyebrow. Chi-Chi hadn't mentioned it yet, but Bulma should have figured something was up. Chi-Chi was just as old as her. She looked over at Vejita and noticed that he didn't even bat an eye. Apparently Saiyajins really didn't know the difference between a fifty year old woman and the young woman they married. In fact, she recalled him asking her why she didn't have children anymore. She could still remember the funny look on his face when she explained the concept of human aging to him.
Nail smiled at his waiting brother as he came out of the Room of Space and Time. "I was right. The room was magically attuned to Piccolo. For me, it is a fresh start and the two year limit did not inhibit my stay in there."
"What if you were wrong?" Dende admonished, relieved Nail was able to walk out.
"I had to take that chance. My chi level was still the same as when I fought Freeza. There is no other way I can beat Piccolo when the time of our fight arrives."
"Piccolo's had a few years head start."
"He's also had a few years where he was at a dead end. I know everything he knows and was able to cut a few corners in my training. One more day in the Room and I should be quite close to him."
"Amazing, isn't it?" Dende asked as he walked over to the edge of the Kami platform and looked down. Even now, he could sense the chi levels of once dormant fighters beginning to rise to new heights.
"Thinking of the human?" Nail asked. Ever since he heard of the boy Vejita was training, he had noticed a decidedly noticeable change in the natural order of the planet.
"I still find it surprising that one of such little power can cause all of this."
"I think Vejita should take most of the credit for this. He's started the ball rolling."
Dende tensed at Vejita's name. "You aren't still thinking of revenge are you, Nail? It's been so many years. Most of the others have already forgiven Vejita."
"One colony is one colony," Nail replied. "He is but one man. Seems fair."
The End. (maybe)