A/N: Let's get it ladies and gentlemen.
Trunks and his friends landed down in front of the familiar capsule home, the dome house a mismatch among Mount Myoboku's forested landscape. Trunks took a deep breath, steadying his heart as he mentally prepared himself at seeing the woman who'd birthed him after all this time. Naruto clapped him on the back, the blonde nodding towards the house. The son of Vegeta clapped his friend back, and walked up to the door.
Tsunade, Shizune, and Bulma sat down at the dining table, the three women sharing a bottle of wine. The blonde elder of the three was unpleased, if her deeper than usual scowl was any indication.
"Those little brats... where do they get off taking a vacation in Suna." Tsunade said.
Bulma shrugged, "They're teenagers. They do what they want at that age. What are you gonna do about it?"
Shizune, holding Tonton, shook her head, "Kakashi was with them. Maybe there was a good reason."
"Way I see it, he can get a foot in his ass too." Tsunade said.
The door to the home opened, the three women's eyes going towards the hall that led to the front. They could hear multiple footsteps entering the home.
"Oh grandma Tsunade~" Naruto sang out,
"You're all dead!" the woman said as she got up, Shizune getting up as well.
"Before you kill us," Sakura called up, "can you tell Bulma to come out, we have a surprise for her."
The women looked to each other before Bulma got up from the table. The woman heading towards the hall, Tsunade and Shizune followed her.
Bulma gasped when she saw the familiar face there to greet her. He was so different now that she hardly recognized him.
"Hey mom…" Trunks said bashfully, "I'm back."
Bulma couldn't help the smile that spread across her face, "It took you long enough." she walked up to him, the woman looking her boy up and down, "Wow, you're so different now."
"Heh," Trunks scratched his face, "what can I say, puberty hits like a truck."
Bulma grabbed at his hair framing his face, "And just where did you get all this hair?"
Bardock snorted, "I wasn't gonna cut it for him."
"To be honest, I never found the time to do it myself." Trunks said.
"Don't!" Ino said, "I think it's hot." Karin nodded her agreement.
Shizune glared at Bardock, "You're a fine man to talk."
Bulma rolled her eyes, "Well, it's so good to see you again, son." she smiled at him warmly, "I prayed every day your ship didn't break down and leave you guys stranded somewhere."
"Nonsense, it's a ship you made, remember." Trunks said.
"It's something I made that got us here, remember. I'm not without my flaws." Bulma said as she looked past Trunks and to the others, noticing another familiar face.
"Wait a minute…" Bulma's eyes squinted as the memories came flooding back, "Tapi-"
"Minotia." the mohawked alien said, "Tapion's brother."
Bulma's brow furrowed, "Okay you and me are definitely gonna talk." she nodded towards the living area, "Come on, let's get out of the foyer."
As everyone moved, Tsunade passed Bardock a glance, "Caveman."
The saiyan smirked, "Missed you too cow tits."
Shizune sighed, "Three minutes… it's only been three minutes…" Tonton oinked in shame. She shook her head and focused on the others, "So, everything with Gaara worked out well?"
"Yup!" Fu said as she flopped down on the couch, "Gaara's fine and the Akatsuki are down a player." she pulled out her game player from inside the couch cushions.
"Trunks took out one of the Akatsuki?" Tsunade said, the woman making a lucky guess.
"Yeah." Kakashi said, the man taking a seat at the dining table, "Trunks showed up, turned Super Saiyan and picked the bastard apart."
"So those three years were good for something after all…" Tsunade sighed, "Do we get… optimistic?"
"Trunks can definitely take those two metal bastards out." Bardock spoke up for Trunks, the saiyan opening the pantry to scrounge for food.
"That's right." Trunks said, the half-saiyan sitting down on the couch next to Ino, "Speaking of which… any updates on them?"
"Evidently," Tsunade said, "they haven't been rampaging much since you two left those years back. Occasional town winds up torn apart from time to time, it's about the only time they show themselves."
Trunks nodded, before he shrugged, "Well, at this point, I'm just itching for'em to show themselves again." his eyes widened when he realized what he'd just said, "That's… pretty cold blooded, isn't it…"
"A little bit." Tsunade shrugged, "But those monsters only show themselves when they're out killing people."
"Yeah," Sakura said, "it's not your fault that the only way to find them is when they're doing their usual routine."
"But, now, hopefully you can put a stop to them for good." Bulma said, the others nodding their agreement.
The Leaf ninja stared down the monster before them, ice-cold fear ever present in their eyes. The beating of their hearts filled their ears, the only sounds they could hear aside from the creature's low raspy growl.
The old man the creature held began to stir, his eyes widening in panic at his crisis, "H-Hey, hey, help! Help me please! Get this thing off me!"
Tenten snapped out of her fear triggered stupor, "Let go of him…" she ordered the creature.
The creature's head tilted lightly not in curiosity or confusion but with a blank expression. It then seemed to comply as it released its grip on the man's collar, dropping him. The fisherman began crawling into the house, before the creature's tail shot forward, piercing into the man's lower back.
Stunned, the teen's watched as the elder's eyes widened in pain and terror. Bulges appeared through the tail's length, guiding from the tip and into the bug's back. This monster was drinking the man from the inside out…
Within' seconds, the old man's already wrinkled skin began to shrivel up like a prune, before he practically started to melt right in front of the ninja; his face caved in, and his body flattened out into a sheet of skin akin to paper… before he faded away into nothing but a set of empty clothes…
Choji choked up, before he heaved over and puked.
None of the Leaf nin had seen anything so terrible before. Sasuke hadn't been this stunned with fear since the time Orochimaru made him witness his own death during the Chunin exams or when Itachi made him see the massacre.
"Oh… my… god…" Tenten breathed in horror, trying and failing to stop herself from trembling.
Neji shuddered, "What on earth…"
At the reaction it received, the creature grinned, "You're next."
"Tenten, move!" Shikamaru ordered, the young woman by instinct diving back and away from the creature.
Sasuke appeared in her place, already having finished the handsigns for a jutsu, "Fire-Style: Fireball Jutsu!"
The creature stood unshaken as the fireball consumed it. When the flames faded, there was no sign of the bug in sight.
Not yet feeling safe, the teen's ran out of the house.
"Leaving so soon."
They stopped at the shrill voice that spoke up from behind them. Turning, they saw the creature kneeled atop the ruined house, the bug casually resting its arm on its knee.
The Leaf nin got into battle stances, ready to fight for their lives.
"So," Shinhan started, poking Trunks in the shoulder, "You never answered my question. Did. You bring. Gifts."
Trunks eyes brightened, "Oh yeah! Thanks for reminding me!" he pulled a capsule out of his jacket, everyone else in the house gathering around. They watched as Trunks tossed the capsule to the living room floor, a collection of different things appearing before the group.
"Alright," Trunks went up to the stuff, "Mom, I got you an assortment of different fruits from various planets, all delicious, trust me." He handed her a big bowl of various coloured berries.
"Awww, thanks son!" Bulma said as she took the bowl to her room.
Trunks handed Ino a necklace, "Ino, a purple crystal necklace from Planet Altimbus. I always figured purple was your favorite color…"
Ino smiled and took the necklace.
"Sakura," Trunks handed her a vase with pink flowers, "Peony's from the Planet Geobes. They only need oxygen to survive so they never wilt."
"They're so beautiful!" Sakura said as she took the vase.
"Naruto," the blonde outcast got excited, "I know how much you love ramen, and I know how much you love pizza…" Trunks pulled up a twelve-count box set, "Pizza flavored ramen!" the blondes eyes lit up, "On Planet Nal Flor, they don't call it pizza, and they don't call it ramen, but they have their equivalents."
"Sweet!" Naruto grinned as he took the box.
"Kakashi," Trunks grabbed another box set from the bunch, "A best selling romance novel collection from Planet Remnant. It has all of the… spicy bits uncensored." he rolled his eyes.
"Ooh, sounds exciting." the copy-ninja smiled as he took the book set.
"Shinhan," the triclops raised a curious eyebrow, "You still like volleyball right?" Trunks pulled a yellow ball, "Never runs out of air, doesn't pop," he suddenly threw the ball towards the wall, but before it could hit, the ball suddenly stopped and came back to the young man's hand, "you don't have to worry about it flying off somewhere because it always comes back!"
"Cool!" Tavi said as she took the ball. Trunks handed her a sculpture of a dove, "That's for #16."
"He'll appreciate it." she said.
"Lee," Trunks pulled out a set of four bands, "You eat, breath, and sleep training, and these are four bands that can be set to a weight of your liking. These can be set heavy, even for me, so be careful with them."
"I much appreciate these, Trunks-kun." Lee said with a bow before he took the bands.
Trunks looked to Shizune, "And for you, Miss Shizune, I picked up an encyclopedia set from several of the planets we hit. I know you're into that whole cultural learning thing." he handed her the books.
Trunks pointed at Fu and Karin, "I know how much you two fell in love with my handhelds." he held up a box and a stack of cases, "You can play some of the top-rated games from Planet Gelus."
"Yes!" the two girls said in unison.
Trunks sighed, before looking to Bardock, "Last but not least, Miss Tsunade, Bardock has something he wants to give you." The elder saiyan's eyes widened as he gave Trunks a light glare for putting him on the spotlight. Everyone in the house looked to at him in wonder at hearing this.
"Really?" Shizune questioned in surprise.
"It's not some severed heads or a jar filled with the blood of innocents, is it?" Naruto asked half sarcastically knowing Bardock could be an ass. With a twitch in his eye, Bardock chose to ignore the comment from the blond as he cleared his throat and grabbed the last item, a glass bottle.
"So…" Bardock said awkwardly as he handed the woman the bottle, "This is a tasty liquor that's popular on the planet Vargas. They call it Sweet Mercury. It's extremely strong, one glass for me can get me lit, so, that's probably a shot for you." Bardock's eyes shot left and right, "Keep it or don't, I don't care." He shrugged and walked away, everyone else snickering at the saiyan.
Looking a bit surprised Tsunade could only look on in wonder as he left. "Um… thanks…"
It had been a long time since anyone gifted her with anything...
Sasuke and Neji shot apart as the creature lunged at them, Neji's heart rising into his throat as the creature zeroed in on him.
The Hyuga set his feet and spun, "ROTATION!"
The creature stopped just short of the sphere, the sound of chirping coming rapidly from behind it.
It's head turned to see Sasuke coming down at it, hand filled with lightning. It simply swatted the Uchiha aside with its tail. Sasuke's heart rose into his throat as the monster's tail wrapped around his ankle before he was whipped up into the air and slammed down hard into the ground. The bug threw him across the ground, Sasuke's back sore and head dazed.
The creature found its movement halted, its head slowly turning to Shikamaru who struggled with all his might to hold the bug with his shadow possession jutsu, "Tenten! Now!" the Nara shouted, feeling as if his hold would break at any second.
"Twin Rising Dragon's Explosive Fireball!"
The bug looked up, the creature unimpressed by the kunoichi that spun up in the air, two opened scrolls twirling stylishly around her. It's brow raised as a barrage of knives and shuriken shot from the opened scrolls and down at the creature, each weapon holding an explosive tag lined to it.
Neji launched himself back to clear himself from the massive explosion that resulted from the onslaught of weapons.
Choji still shook in his boots as he watched the fireball before him, Sasuke getting back up to his feet as Tenten lowered herself to the ground.
"Just what the hell was that thing?!" Tenten said, the young woman shaking in her sandals. Neji appeared next to his teammates.
"I don't have a clue…" Sasuke said, the teen letting out a shaky breath, "We need to get-" his eyes widened as a tall shadow formed from the fading smoke haze.
"How…" Neji breathed.
Sasuke was suddenly having flashbacks of his battle with the Androids three years ago.
The bug gave a small dark chuckle. "My turn now." Without warning, one hard elbow to Shikamaru's neck completely and effortlessly laid the teenager out, knocking him unconscious. The creature's hands suddenly came together, rapidly forming hand signs…
"Earth Release: Stone Hail Storm!"
Rocks shot up from the ground around the bug, rising high up into the air. The teen's moved in a blur as the rocks shot down to ground, the ninja barely able to avoid getting shredded by the stones. Choji grabbed Shikamaru's unconscious form, the Akimichi crying out as several deep gashes opened up on his arms and legs from the stone. Despite the pain, he moved his friend out of harm's way.
Tenten gasped as the creature fazed in, hitting her with a back fist to her jaw and sending her tumbling across the ground.
Choji's right arm expanded to the length of a bus, his fist flying to the creature. To the Akimichi's horror, his fist was stopped cold by the creature's palm as it didn't even budge from its spot.
The creature looked up and down the arm, before flashing into Choji's defence and hitting the Akimichi in the gut, winding the boy before grabbing him by the top of his head and throwing him at Sasuke.
Sasuke dodged, allowing Choji to tumble along the ground behind him. He eyed the creature, realizing he and his teammates weren't even so much as winding the thing. It was playing with its food...
Neji's Byakugan scanned the bug's tenketsu. He jumped up over the creature, suspending himself up in the air as his hands thrusted forward repeatedly. His distance based Jyuken strikes struck home against the creature, though if it were harmed by the attacks, it didn't show it.
The bug chuckled in a manner that showed a disturbingly human trait… arrogance. It brought its hands together to form more hand signs for another jutsu. After forming a series of them however it raised its brow in confusion as it looked its hands over when it found it couldn't use it's intended jutsu. It looked to Neji in suspicion at being the cause of this.
This raised the Leaf nin's spirits, the teen's quickly coming together and standing before the monster.
Chuckling the bug took a stance, before cupping its hands at its right side. Its stance was familiar, one the teen's had seen before… from a certain Ki user.
"No way!" Sasuke, Shikamaru, and Choji breathed.
"Tavishinhan's technique?!" Tenten and Neji exclaimed
"Kaaa… meeee… haaa… meeee… haaaaa!" The bug cried out as he unleashed the familiar blue coloured ki blast. The teens leaped apart as the blast tore away the earth. Through the whirlwind of movement, Choji barely saw the shape of green appear in his vision.
The Akimichi was smacked in the face by a tail, the boy getting sent skidding across the ground. A foot planted itself on Choji's chest, pinning the Akimichi to the ground. The heavyset teenager looked up in horror at the monster that towered over him, its tail slinking up before his eyes. The tip of the tail waved tauntingly in the boy's face.
Choji raised his arms, "No… please no!"
The stinger shot down into Choji's forearm, the Akimichi crying out in pain and terror.
The creature cackled hysterically before a massive shuriken chopped through the air. The creature's laughs stopped when the blades clipped off the tip of its tail before continuing through a forest. The lightning and ki enhanced shuriken sliced through several trees before the blade got stuck into the bark of an oak half a mile away.
A clear cry of pain was heard from the creature for the first time as it jumped back. It brought its tail into view and saw the extent of damage it received. The base tip having been severed off just a bit over where the green colouring began. With a hint of anger, it turned to see Sasuke panting heavily. The Uchiha had put everything he could into that throw. Choji moved beside the Uchiha while holding his aching arm.
The anger left the bugs eyes as it looked at them as if seeing something of interest. "Fascinating." it said.
"Before you kill us…" Sasuke started, much to the shock of Tenten, Shikamaru, and Neji, "tell me… just what in the hell are you?"
"Sasuke?!" Tenten said.
"Quiet!" Sasuke barked at her, "Don't you get it? We can't kill this thing… we can't escape it... it's over." his brow furrowed as he stared the monster down, his aim to deceive, "Before you kill me, I just... wanna know what the hell you are… I know you aren't from this world."
The bug raised an invisible eyebrow, not anticipating the Uchiha's knowledge. It smiled as it gave a small mocking laugh, "Ah, finally someone who knows some semblance about my origins. As well as who acknowledges the futility of his actions against a clear superior foe. I like you boy." he smirked, "To answer your question… my name is Cell. And you're right… I come from an Earth that isn't yours."
Neji, Tenten, and Choji's eyes widened at the confirmation.
"What… what the hell are you? Are you an android?" Tenten asked.
Cell raised another nonexistent eyebrow at hearing the girl call him by that specific word. Everyone else he had come across had only ever called him monster, reptile, lizard, abomination, and demon. She wouldn't have questioned him with that term unless she knew about the two he had come into this world for. Perhaps these humans know where his prized preys were located or had gone. Well he'll find out soon enough once he devours them.
He shrugged, "In a manner of speaking, I suppose. However, unlike my brethren I was not a human or machine but rather an organic being created from scratch. For you see, I'm actually more of a clone, created and grown from the DNA of the strongest warriors of my Earth."
The Leaf ninja shuddered in their sandals.
"Satisfied? Good." Cell grinned as he suddenly seemed to focus and make an effort for something. They soon got their answer when his tail tip regenerated, much to the kids further horror. Cell got ready to attack again but before the bio-Android could act, the distant sounds of explosions brought its attention to the east. "Could it be?" He suddenly flew into the air and it grinned as it spread out its senses, feeling no strong power levels coming from the direction of the blasts. The fact he also didn't sense any chakra signatures gave it a further indication at what it could've been. After all there was only one thing that could use Ki blasts, had no chakra and were undetectable. "My babies? It has to be!" he cackled maniacally as he shot off from the battlefield and towards the sounds of destruction.
Choji grabbed his chest, feeling as if he were gonna have a heart attack.
Neji hissed, voice filled with venom, "Next time I see Trunks… I'm gonna kill him."
"This is not… Trunks… fault, Neji!" Tenten shouted at the Hyuga.
"Open your damn eyes, Tenten! Because of him there's now a monster roaming our world sucking people dry!"
"You just need something to blame! You always need something to blame, Neji! Why can't you just-"
As Neji and Tenten went at it, Choji went to Shikamaru, pulling a senzu bean from his equipment pouch. He force fed the unconscious Nara the bean, watching as the teen's eyes popped back open.
Shikamaru sat up, he and Choji turning to the sound of Tenten and Neji's escalating argument. The two boys and Sasuke sprang in to intervene when Neji slapped Tenten, the young woman retaliating by punching Neji.
"Enough!" Shikamaru said, the jonin restraining Tenten. The two teens backed off.
"Just what we need," Neji snarled, "Another monster on the loose."
Shikamaru pieced together the context clues, "That thing's from Trunks world?"
Neji went up to the tail tip laying on the ground. He picked it up, eyeing it. The creature's shrill voice echoed in his mind, *'I'm actually more of a clone, formed from the DNA of the strongest warriors of my Earth.'* Shikamaru walked up next to him, eyeing the bit of tail as well, "We should get this back to the Hokage. Let him know what's out there."
"Yeah." Neji agreed, handing Shikamaru the tail and letting him put it in his weapons pouch, "Let's get the hell out of here."
Sasuke looked off in the direction the monster flew, "This is only gonna get worse… isn't it..."
"You're kidding?!" Sakura breathed, the others in just as much disbelief.
"I'm dead serious," Trunks shrugged, the teen sitting casually on the living room couch, "I didn't believe it at first, either, but it was Bardock's theory. We tested it… and he was right."
"A level beyond super saiyan…" Naruto got giddy, "You gonna show it or not?!"
Trunks looked around, "I don't see why not…" he nodded towards the front door, "lets go."
Trunks stood out in the clearing, his friends standing before him. He shed his jacket and tossed it to the side. His feet set heavy into the grass, before he let out a yell, instantly transforming into a Super Saiyan. His aura raged, growing larger and louder as his power skyrocketed to heights the teens hadn't seen before. The ground around him cracked and shattered. An orb of pure light formed around him, the aura suddenly bursting outward and forcing the teens to cover their eyes.
From inside the Capsule home, the adults saw the light pour in through the window, Bulma's conversation with Minotia being interrupted by the rattling of the cups on the table, "Ugh, great." she sighed in mild irritation, the woman and the alien grabbing the glasses before they spilled.
The ninja could hardly move as they eyed the display before them. His power eclipsed anything they'd felt from him before, his muscle mass increasing even past the typical bulk of the usual transformation.
"Insane…" Karin breathed.
Trunks smirked, the half-saiyan looking between the pairs of eyes staring him down, "It's not so much a transformation as it is an augmentation of the super saiyan form." he explained, voice rougher. He stood up straight, his aura still violently flowing. He was taller, his hair spikier, and body much bulkier, "If you wanna give it a name… call it Ascended Super Saiyan."
"Cool…" Fu and Naruto said in unison.
"So if its an augmentation and not a transformation," Shinhan deduced, "Then that means it works like my kaioken or Lee's gates, right?"
"In a sense." Trunks said, "Only, in my case, my body doesn't get ripped apart from the stress. The main downside to this, is that the energy required to sustain it is a drag. If I pull this out, I wouldn't wanna drag out the fight too long, get it."
The others nodded.
"Ready for the next stage?" he asked.
"There's a next stage?!" Ino asked.
"HYAAAAAAAAAAAA!" Trunks sudden yell caught everyone off guard, the demi-saiyan lowering into a squat. Their eyes widened in shock at the sudden and rapid increase in power.
Trunks yell turned to a holler as his power skyrocketed even further. His aura began to flow further outward and surged violently with bioelectricity. His hair grew noticeably longer, his skin turning red from increased blood flow. His muscles began to grow even more in size, becoming enormous by human means. Each of his biceps alone were about the size of a basketball. His tank top began ripping apart and his pants legs tore open.
Ino looked the young man up and down, 'Talk about too much of a good thing…' she loved how muscular he was typically, but at this point, he looked ridiculous. If his muscles got any bigger they may have ripped right through his flesh.
"BOY! What did I tell you?!"
Trunks immediately cut the transformation short, Bardock's voice cracking through the air like a gunshot. Dropping back into his base form, he and the others looked to the Capsule home to see Bardock, Tsunade, and Shizune standing by the front door.
A sigh escaped Trunks throat, "I know, I was just-"
"I don't even want you showing it off." Bardock said, "Forget you know it. That form has no use to you."
The sannin studied Trunks Ultra Super Saiyan physique through her mind's eye, "Trading speed for strength and power…" Tsunade mumbled, instantly realizing the flaw, "suicidal in our battles."
"Talk about a lack of respect for the environment."
All eyes went to the new voice, Pa and Ma toad having hitched a ride atop #16's shoulders, the Android having landed in. The two toads looked around at the torn up landscape.
Pa looked at Trunks, the elder toad raising an accusing eyebrow, "Ya just get in and you're already tearing up the place?"
Trunks scratched his cheek, "Er, sorry. Didn't think that one through."
#16 approached the half-saiyan, Ma and Pa toad hopping off his shoulders, "It is nice that you've made a return, Trunks-kun."
"Good to see you too big fella." Trunks shook hands with the machine.
"Good to see you've actually improved." Pa toad said, he looked to Naruto, "Now we can handle this Akatsuki problem, and you" he looked to Trunks, "Can handle this Android problem."
"Consider it done." Trunks told the toad, "This world's gonna be a much better place. I promise."
Cell landed in the center of a ruined town, the destruction fresh as smoke still seeped from destroyed buildings... though there was no sign of its perpetrators in sight…
"Too late?" Cell asked himself, the Androids gaze hardening in anger.
He walked through the town, traversing around the wreckage. As he did so however he quickly started to notice one crucial thing that showed something off... there were no bodies.
Mysterious. There were no signs of anyone at all. Not even pieces of clothes which were the only thing he left behind as evidence of having been the cause of the sudden vacancy. For all this destruction, there wasn't a single sign that anyone had lived here…
"Where had everyone gone?" Cell though suspiciously knowing despite his prized prey's tendency for destruction even they didn't leave a place this clean from human life.
The bug went still as he could suddenly feel the gaze of something boring into him…
It quickly turned its head… but for a fraction of a second his peripheral he caught sight of a figure standing atop a ruined building before it disappeared.
The android's slitted eyes narrowed. It didn't get a good look at who that was but for a moment he thought he sensed something unusual about the figure.
"My… how you've grown…"
His head turned again to the sound of the voice, catching nothing there...
A/N: And that's that, ladies and gents. With new threats on the horizon, it looks like the world is gonna get worse before it gets better. Since Cell's been feeding on shinobi, instead of strictly civilians like in canon, his strength will naturally reflect his diet. I'll get creative with his abilities.
Anyways, I'll catch you guys next time. Slide a review my way to let me know your thoughts!