Hi. How have you been? I've been real busy being dead.
So, it's been two long years since I first posted the chapter. I know some of you were afraid it was a one shot, and it was never getting continued, and I apologize for that. Muse just didn't want to focus on Dragon Ball for the life of me. And honestly, I'll at least TRY not to go another two years before the next one, though I make no promises, lol.
That said… I've already ended up making changes in this chapter from my comprehensive set of plans for this fic, so we'll see where it goes. ORZ
Chapter II: Training at Turtle Rock
"So where will we go first, Bulma?" Goku yelled at her. They were flying relatively slowly, and they both knew it. Goku on his own could more than double their current pace.
"I want to go to Capsule Corp first! We need to drop off the Dragon Radar and I want some better Capsules and supplies! Plus, I want to prepare an empty capsule for your spaceship so we can transport it back home!" She almost immediately started backtracking as she realized she may have made a gaffe, "I mean, if you don't have a problem with me taking it for study, of course!"
Goku smiled at her, "Hey, it's not like you'll break it, right? As long as you can save the data on it, I'll be fine. It's… it's all I have left to remember them by, you know."
"Yeah." She took a deep breath, knowing now that she had to be super careful with his ship. She took out her phone and kept a steady grip on it, "Darn, I was hoping we'd be closer, but Pilaf's Castle was basically smack dab in the middle between my house and your house!"
"It'll be good practice for you, then!" Goku laughed, not really bothered. He then grinned and veered towards Bulma causing her to squeak in shock and try ducking.
"What was that for?!" She screeched, "Stay in your lane, buddy!"
"You wish!" He cackled before blurring in motion and poking her on the side, "Tag, you're it!" Bulma had immediately spasmed as a bit of laughter escaped her throat. "You're ticklish!" Goku yelled in delight as he hurried away as she took a swipe.
"Get back here!" She snarled playfully as she took off after him. "Wait till I get my hands on you!"
"Ahahaha!" Goku laughed as she tried to grab him while they were in midair. "Gotta be faster than that, Bulma!" Secretly though, Goku did have an ulterior motive for initiating this play. He wanted to tire her out, so that he could find out her new limits. They played air tag for a while before he noticed her starting to sweat even if she herself didn't. She totally wasn't paying attention to her draining stamina, since they were having a lot of fun. "Nimbus…" He whispered. The command didn't need to be shouted. The magical cloud almost had a mind of its own and he was sure it knew what he wanted. He smiled when he noticed it tracking behind Bulma, just the way it was supposed to. "Catch me if you can!" He yelled, before putting it into high gear!
"Wah!" Bulma screeched as he started pulling away. She tried her hardest to keep up, but she just wasn't anywhere near fast enough. And then (with a gasp of horror) her power cut out and she started falling from the sky. "AHHHH! GOKUUUU!" She screamed, closing her eyes. And then she stopped and cracked open her eyelids to look below her.
Gold. She was on something golden. Her eyes shot open, and she gasped, wonder filling her. "Knew it!" Goku levitated next to her, the biggest grin ever on his face.
"Is…Is this?" She asked in awe, squeezing the surface a little bit. It was like a marshmallow. Like the fluffiest, most comfortable pillow she'd ever sat on. Goku landed on the Nimbus in front of her, still smiling gently at her. She bit her lip after her chin quivered. She was totally overcome with emotion as she latched onto her friend with a gasping, shuddering breath.
Goku simply ran his fingers through her silky hair, smiling gently all the while.
"I… I can't believe it!" She had a blinding grin on her face when she pulled away, "I…" She bit her lip again, a single tear dripping from her eye which she hurriedly brushed away, "Nimbus rejecting me was one of the biggest reasons I started seriously reconsidering my wish." She admitted to him.
"I know. You were so disappointed that day." He said, getting a nod from her. He sat next to her, "So I wanted to try it again. When I noticed you didn't notice your energy going down, I called for Nimbus."
She was going to say something when she jumped in place, turning to look behind her. Goku's tail had playfully entwined around hers, and despite the undoubtable innocence in the gesture from Goku she couldn't help but blush, "It's going to take some getting used to." She admitted.
"No time like now!" Goku declared as he started showing her how to use her new appendage.
"Wow, it's HUGE!" Goku squawked in awe as he stared at the massive dome from the air.
"Home Sweet Home!" Bulma smiled at him and squeezed his shoulder, "Welcome to Capsule Corp! We have all the toys!" She giggled, "Let's go say hi to my mom and dad! I can see them relaxing by the pool!"
"Sure!" They started to fly down, before Bulma snagged his wrist with a giggle.
"Wait. Let's go above them and confuse them a little!" She continued to giggle for a moment as Goku joined her.
Dr. Briefs and his wife Panchy both perked up, "Honey, did you hear that?" Dr. Briefs paused petting his cat as he looked around languidly.
"I did!" Panchy exclaimed, "That was our little Bulma's voice! But I can't see her!" How she was able to see anything with her eyes closed was anyone's guess, but she did an admirable job of it. She got even more confused when she heard her daughter's voice giggling.
"Up here!" Her daughter called out again!
"Oh my!" Panchy let out a little gasp at seeing her daughter and a smaller boy standing still in the air, "Oh sweetheart, why didn't you call ahead? I could have baked some delicious cookies!"
Bulma snorted as she and Goku started descending again and touched down easily. "Of course, you would think about that and not the fact I was flying."
"It was very cool, sweetheart! Is it fun?" Dr. Briefs was evidently a very hard man to shock with anything, "And who is your little friend?"
"This is Son Goku!" Bulma answered with a smile, "I wouldn't have had anywhere near the adventure without him!"
"Hiya!" Goku said cheerfully, his tail wagging behind him at meeting Bulma's parents.
"Well nice to meet you, Son-kun." Panchy leaned over a little to get a closer look at him, "And what a little cutie too! Would you like some snacks?"
Goku perked up immediately, "Lunch?" He almost started vibrating.
Bulma rolled her eyes, "If it wasn't for the fact that I started eating WAY more after the wish, I would totally be annoyed. Breakfast wasn't even an hour ago!" She grumbled to herself. "Anyway, mom, dad, can we go inside? I have stories to share. In private." She emphasized, and that certainly caught her father's attention.
"Of course. That was just about enough sun for me today." He commented as he stood.
"I'll go bake those cookies!" Panchy exclaimed as she made to wander off but was stopped by Bulma.
"You too mom." Bulma said softly, her hand resting on her mom's shoulder.
"How fascinating." Dr Briefs examined his partially nude daughter and her friend. Specifically, their tails. "And you say this tail gives you the ability to transform into a giant ape?"
Bulma and Goku pulled their pants back up all the way. Both of her parents had taken the information that her daughter was now biologically an alien with a grace that had almost stunned Goku. "That's right. I saw it with my own eyes. He was way bigger than King Kong too!"
"Which one?" Panchy asked as she walked in with the tray of cookies. She offered one to Goku who immediately bit into it… aaaand was hooked.
"Wow! Bulma's mom's cookies are awesome!" He exclaimed, drawing a smile from the blonde, perpetually squinting woman.
"The biggest one so far. Monsterverse. And I'm talking Kong vs Godzilla, not Skull Island." Bulma responded, before turning a somewhat nervous look on Goku. What would he look like if she let him get a sugar high?
"Oh my. That's quite big!" Panchy exclaimed as her husband busied himself with his screens.
"Biologically, you don't appear very different." He mumbled out loud, "At least not superficially. Maybe deeper down… Honey, can you draw some blood? I'd like to take a look under the hood."
"I'm not a car." Bulma deadpanned, before she stuck her hands in a machine that sterilized them and then covered them in gloves. She grabbed a needle and a bottle for her blood and skillfully stuck herself. "Should I draw blood from Goku too?"
"Uh, uh!" Goku had backed up into Panchy and almost knocked the poor woman over. He didn't know why, but that thing in Bulma's hands was seriously freaking him out.
Bulma blinked, before turning to him in shock, "Huh?" She almost literally had question marks over her head, "Are… Goku, are you afraid of this tiny thing?" She almost started to laugh hysterically.
"Keep it away from me!" Goku almost sounded like he was pleading.
Bulma's face was very evil, "No way buster! After all the torture you disguised as training, I'm not letting you run away from a little needle!" She had a very… Roshi look on her face as she held up a syringe, "Now hold still for nurse Bulma…"
"Eep!" That was the most un-Goku-like noise she had ever heard, and he actually started hiding behind Panchy.
Bulma burst out laughing, and both her parents exchanged half-worried looks at the near-hysterical tinge to it.
Bulma stared at herself in the mirror, after the first real, relaxing bath she'd had in days. No training to worry about. No worries about what her wish was going to be once she got the Dragon Balls. No roughing it after her capsules were destroyed…
Nothing but relaxation. And now, staring at herself, she was struck by just how different she looked compared to when she had set off. And she wasn't even referring to the tail. That was actually just the most obvious of the differences. She had always been beautiful, but it was a soft, feminine beauty. She had looked like a stiff breeze would knock her over, and that a broken nail would be literally the worst thing in the world. Now she saw the beginnings of a six pack from all of her hard work the past two months under Goku's training. She had some definition to her. Her hair – which she had always needed to work on heavily each time she wanted it straight – had simply fallen into place as soon as she'd finished drying it. As though she'd spent an hour at the salon getting it done professionally. She didn't just look beautiful… She looked downright hot.
She smiled, before turning away. She'd left a girl and come back a woman. Meeting Goku truly had been the best thing to ever happen to her, and it wasn't even close. She wouldn't trade their friendship for the world.
"You will bring it back, won't you?" Dr. Briefs asked for the nth time. He had almost started drooling when she told him Goku knew where his spaceship was and that it was in working order.
"Yes dad, I will." She let out a sigh, before smirking, "After I'm done studying it myself, of course. And it'll accelerate our knowledge by centuries!" She couldn't wait.
"As long as I can see it for myself." Her father smiled, "Have fun, sweetheart. You have the mobile lab?"
"Of course." Bulma nodded, having traded out her adventuring capsules for much sleeker and more advanced versions. No skimping on the air conditioning this time. She again couldn't understand why she hadn't just spent the extra Zeni the first time.
"This will be the longest you've ever been away from home, sweetheart. Make sure you have fun! And make sure to call." Panchy handed her a brand new, top of the line smartphone that had been released during her adventure with Goku.
"I will! Love you mom, dad!" She rose up into the air.
"Bye Bulma's parents!" Goku called cheerfully, very deliberately not looking in Bulma's direction as he ignored the bandage on his arm. He was wearing clothes that actually fit him now, rather than whatever they had been able to raid from Pilaf's destroyed castle.
He sped off past Bulma, who had to call the Nimbus to keep up, "Wait up Goku! I said I was sorry! Gokuuuu! Wait up you big baby!"
"There it is." Goku announced. It had taken a lot of hugging and playing in the air for him to forgive her for the needle incident, which annoyed Bulma more than a bit. But it was over now, and so was the pprevious leg of their journey. They were both on Nimbus, having discovered that it flew even faster than Goku could on his own. That had sure surprised them, but they figured they could get training with the skill later. Now, they were kind of in a hurry, eager to get back to Master Roshi.
"Wow… I'd seen it before when I first came here, but it's totally different in the air." Bulma breathed softly, "Plus… now I know what actually caused all of this. Are you sure it isn't destroyed?"
"Yeah." Goku nodded from his spot, "I don't know what these things are made of, but they're super strong. Look!" He pointed, "It's there in that crater."
"I see it!" Bulma jumped off Nimbus and flew there, giddy as a schoolgirl. "Wow…" She breathed when she saw it for the first time. Even after years of exposure to the elements, the ball still looked to be in pretty good condition. Luckily it had even closed after Goku exited, so the insides weren't exposed. It looked far from pristine, but it looked damn good.
"You got used to flying quick!" Goku grinned happily, "I remember the first time we flew, you begged me to slow down! Now you're jumping off Nimbus yourself!"
"Trust me… no one's more shocked than I am." She deadpanned, "Two months ago I was a girly girl and a spoiled brat. I never imagined how things would turn out." She eyed it and put a hand on it to try to move it. It didn't budge, "Can you bring it out of the crater? Sealing items that weren't prepared for capsules works a bit different than regular Dyno-Caps."
"Sure!" Goku made his way to the ball and started trying to lift it. Surprisingly, it was pretty damn heavy. He could actually get a good workout if he used it! He struggled for a moment, before lifting it over his head with a grimace on his face, "Yikes! It's really heavy!"
"Here! Set it on this pad! I'm really glad I grabbed this thing before we left. No way would we have been able to seal it in a Dyno-Cap without it." Bulma called out to him as he slowly rose from the crater, "Wow, even you're struggling with it? Hopefully this is sturdy enough…" Goku set it down on the raised, metal platform. It let out a little groan and even sank a bit further into the turf. Bulma grimaced, "Okay, no letting this thing on loose dirt. Got it." She hurriedly typed into the console, and then the whole ensemble started to glow before it poofed. In its place, was a small capsule in the dirt, which Bulma swiped and put into her carrying case, "There! All done!"
"Awesome! So, all we need to do now is go by my house so I can grab my futon and some clothes and then we're off to Roshi's!" Goku cheered, pumping his fist.
"Why would we do that?" Bulma blinked, "I have us covered. I got you a bunch of new clothes too." She patted her pack with a smile.
"Really? But where will I sleep?" Goku asked, "The old man's island is pretty small."
She frowned, "Hopefully we will be moving to a bigger place then. In any case, with me of course." She smirked at him, "You're my teddy bear now." She leapt up and started heading towards Nimbus, "If you really want to go there, we can. But really, I don't think we need to."
They both landed on the magical golden cloud, "You know… there is something at my house. I think you'll like it!" Goku grinned, having a feeling that the clothes he'd arrived on the planet in would wow her.
"So, what's this thing you want to show me?" Bulma asked as they stepped into the old cabin. It looked considerably dustier than the last time she had stepped inside.
She watched curiously as Goku pulled out a chest and rummaged inside, "Tada!" He exclaimed, pulling out a… a…?
"What is that? It looks almost like a shirt but it's super weird looking. What are those shoulder pads?" Bulma was bewildered. The white, black, and golden thing looked like it was meant for a tiny doll. "That thing wouldn't even fit a baby."
Goku grinned, "You sure about that?" And without waiting for her to respond, he raised it over his head and slipped it on to his body. It stretched to fit him like a glove.
Bulma's eyes nearly popped out of her head, "WHAT THE?!"
"Heheheh!" Goku laughed, "Knew you'd like that! It's supposed to be one-size-fits-all! And I mean all. It's even supposed to stretch big enough to fit you if you look at the full moon!"
"Y-y-y-y-y-you can't be serious!" Bulma blurted out, "That's not possible! There's no material on the planet that can do something like that!"
"That's not all!" He grinned and raised a hand that was suddenly glowing with his Ki, "This isn't clothing. It's armor!" He punched himself in the chest, causing a small explosion. Bulma shielded her eyes with an indignant squawk, "See! Not a scratch!" Bulma was quite literally just babbling like an infant, pointing at the armor ineffectually. Goku slipped it off and it shrank back down to its resting size. He then reached into the trunk and pulled out what looked like a onesie fit for a doll, "It's the same for this thing! It's not as good as the armor, but this stretches just like it!"
Bulma's brain finally seemed to engage again, and she grabbed Goku and smushed his face into her chest, "Goku!" She yelled as she spun him around, not noticing the strange look that came across his face, "You're just the gift that keeps on giving, aren't you?!" She finally put him down and grabbed the piece of clothing, marveling as she stretched it over a dozen times its normal size with her hands, "This is AMAZING! What else do you have?!"
"Just the rest of the armor pieces. Grandpa never showed them to me before he died. He told me about them… well… you know." His voice didn't go dark the way it used to, but he did grow a bit more solemn. She sobered, remembering what her poor friend had suffered through alone for so many years, "That's all I remember about, anyway. There was a thingy that went over one of our eyes too, but it never seemed to do anything and me and grandpa broke it by mistake, so we tossed it somewhere."
"Drat!" Bulma clicked her fingers, "I probably could have fixed it. Oh well. No use crying over spilt milk. Let's get this all packed up and let's head out!"
"Wow, it IS small! There's no way we could stay here if we're planning on training! It doesn't even look big enough for that!" Bulma exclaimed as they descended.
"Told ya!" Goku grinned as they jumped onto the sand. Strangely, Turtle was nowhere to be found, "Master Roshi! It's Goku and Bulma!" He called out, to no response.
"No way! Did we miss him?" Bulma frowned, "Do you think he hasn't come back from Frypan Mountain yet?"
"Master!" Goku called out again, and they got closer to the window, "Wait, there he is!"
"Oh, you've GOT to be joking." Bulma started to complain, her frown deepening as she watched the old pervert. He had his eyes glued to his TV screen and was practically drooling over the models exercising.
"And a one, and a two, and a one, and a two!" The girls kept chanting as they did their leg lifts, which Roshi mirrored. The chant. Not the exercise.
Bulma counted to ten, breathing deeply and then releasing it. "I think I may hate him. Hey Goku, did he try to ask for anything strange when you came by here to get the Banshō fan?"
Goku frowned as well, "Come to think of it, he did say something about me asking you on some 'date' thingy for him."
Bulma's face went flat, "Can we leave? I think I may kill him before he trains us." She sighed and started grumbling as she followed Goku inside. After a minute of watching Goku stand behind Roshi and call out to him, she got angry and stomped forward. "OLD MAN!"
"Wah!?" Roshi jumped a foot in the air, before turning and glaring at them, "Wha-Oh, it's you!" He grinned in excitement.
"Jeez, are you really a master?! We've been here calling your name for two minutes!" She crossed her arms with a harrumph. "We're here for training, you know. You did offer!"
"I did." Roshi mournfully turned off the TV, "My training ain't easy though, and it's not for free either."
Bulma rolled her eyes, "We'll just go then. Clearly, you can't keep a teeny, little promise."
"N-no wait! I didn't say I wouldn't train ya!" Roshi exclaimed as Goku (reading Bulma well) turned to leave with her. "Jeez, give an old man a break, will ya? I have to eat too, you know."
"I'm sure food is the last thing you're hungry for, you old pervert." Bulma stared at him, unimpressed, before reaching into her purse and pulling out a capsule, "Will this do?" She tossed it to him.
Roshi clicked it open, and his eyes widened as a bookshelf stuffed with vintage… reading material appeared. Steam blew from his nose with the accompanying sound of a teakettle, "OF COURSE IT WILL!"
"God damn it!" Bulma cursed under her breath, "Fucking pervert! Letch! I was HOPING that wouldn't work, but clearly, I overestimated him. Way to get my hopes down." She took a breath, "Whatever. As long as it's not me he's perving on." Roshi was drooling as he flipped through the pages. Just the cover page was risqué enough. "So, are we in, old man?"
"Sure, you're in!" Roshi coughed, "Goku still has to make payment though."
Bulma started to snarl, "What? What the hell do you mean?! You damned old pervert, you're the one who offered to train us in the first place!"
They were interrupted by the sound of something crashing into the island, and they all hurried out just in time to see a little boy about Goku's height wiggle his legs while stuck head-first in the sand.
"Oh, now what?" Roshi grumbled, "Friend of yours?"
"Nope." Goku and Bulma responded, with Goku grabbing him by the leg and just yanking him out.
"PUAH!" The boy batted himself off, revealing himself to be bald. He was wearing yellow and orange clothes reminiscent of Goku's old gi and he had six dots burned onto his forehead. He bowed to Roshi without even a hint of gratitude towards Goku, "Are you Master Roshi, the invincible old master?"
"That's right. And you are?" Roshi replied while Goku and Bulma watched on.
"I hail from the distant East! My name is Krillin, and my greatest desire is to train under you, master." He bowed his head.
"See, why can't you two be more polite like this one?" He shot towards Bulma. Bulma flipped him off, "Regardless, I'm afraid I must deny you. I don't take pupils often anymore, and I already have one accepted student here. Have a nice ride back." He told the boy without much care. He'd done the same to thousands of prospects, after all.
"Please take this as a token of my appreciation, master." Krillin handed him a magazine, and Bulma bit back the groan threatening to bubble up when she saw a far more risqué cover than anything in the collection she'd already given him.
"Perhaps I've been too hasty." Roshi quickly grabbed it, much to a smirking Krillin's happiness. "Mhmmm, yes, yesss, hasty."
"Kami give me strength." Bulma grumbled to herself.
"I take it this offering is to your liking, master?" Krillin continued smirking, before directing his attention to Goku and Bulma. He immediately blushed upon seeing Bulma, before forcibly looking towards Goku, "And who are you, kid? There's no way you were accepted. Everyone knows true martial artists shave their heads in order to unfetter their Ki. Take the venerable Master Roshi, for example."
"I'm naturally bald, actually." Roshi shot out, making Krillin wince before focusing on Goku.
"I'm Son Goku, and this is Bulma. The old man already accepted her as a student."
"BWUH?! But she's a girl!" Krillin gasped in shock.
"Fuck you too, pachinko-head." Bulma flipped him off.
"What?! How rude!" Krillin growled at her, "You're cute but you're a real-"
"Alright, that's enough of that." Roshi had stuffed his acquired porn… somewhere while they weren't paying attention. He had his arms behind his back and stood as tall as his hunched form would allow, "Now pay attention… for you both to be accepted as my disciples, you must accomplish one mission for me!"
"Of course, master!" Krillin exclaimed, "We will do as you command!"
"Excellent. Then go out and find me a beautiful hottie like her!" He pointed at Bulma. "Just make sure she's already sixteen!"
"Fucking pig!" Bulma yelled.
"Oh, that'll be really hard." Goku commented offhandedly, "I've never met anyone as pretty as Bulma."
Bulma's entire face flushed red at the unexpected compliment from Goku. The fact that he didn't even glance at her made it hit home even harder. It wasn't a comment designed to try to get in her pants, like it would have been coming from any of the other boys she'd ever known.
"Ho, ho!" Roshi let out a little laugh, "Looks like there's hope for you, boy. That was smooth."
'Yes, it was!' Bulma was still blushing, but smiling at her friend.
"Smooth?" Goku tilted his head to the side.
"Right!" Roshi studiously ignored Goku being the most successful one on the island with Bulma without even trying, "Off you go! Grab your Nimbus and find me a hottie!"
"Right! Nimbus!" Goku called out, and the golden cloud responded.
"Woah, what's this?!" Krillin yelled in excitement as he saw the cloud.
"Here Krillin, you can use the Nimbus." Goku patted it, making it clear that it was solid.
"Really? We can ride on this thing?!" Krillin jumped into the air in excitement… and fell right through the cloud.
A second passed, "Pff!" Bulma burst out laughing at the bald boy.
"What the hell?! Is this some kind of trick?!" The incensed bald boy yelled at him.
"Huh, guess that means you're not pure of heart." Goku commented, demonstrating the cloud's abilities by sitting on it.
"That's right. Have you come here to train for impure motives?" Roshi demanded of the small boy.
"No way!" Krillin exclaimed, standing up and clenching his fists, "I truly wish to become a great fighter! I just want to be more popular with the girls!"
"And that's not impure to you?" Roshi questioned dumbly.
"Pot calling the kettle black, old man!" Bulma resisted the urge to smack the older bald man. "Just fly with him Goku and get back as soon as possible!" She did not finish the statement, but her side-eyed look at Roshi gave Goku the clue.
"Right." He grabbed Krillin without so much as a by-your-leave and they flew away, "Be back soon!"
"So, now that we're alo-" Master Roshi turned and started talking to Bulma, who had already walked away.
"Unless you want to teach me any new forms, go read your porn, pervert." She called over her shoulder, before unsealing a barbell with some relatively light weights (she'd seen Goku lift ones dozens of times heavier) and started doing squats. "I said your porn! I'm not porn damn it! Don't make me bash your head in with this thing!" She yelled as Roshi's giggling reached her ears.
It did not take that long for Goku and Krillin to return, and this time Bulma had to bite back a smirk. Looks like the boys had indeed found Roshi's "hottie" and like Bulma herself, she had blue hair. A darker and deeper blue than her turquoise, for sure, but blue, nonetheless. That compliment from Goku from earlier was still ringing in her ears.
"Goodness, it looks so cozy!" The young woman exclaimed, looking around innocently.
Bulma shook her head, "Lo there!" She smiled at her, still pretty confident in her own looks, "So, what made you decide to come? I'm Bulma, by the way."
"Nice to meet you, Bulma! I'm Launch!" Launch replied, cheerfully. "Hmm, well I came with them because they helped me out, actually. I was being pursued."
"Yikes." Bulma winced in sympathy, "What for?"
"The police, probably." Launch said, making Krillin and Bulma's eyes widen in shock. She then opened the bag by her side, revealing stacks and stacks of cash, "Looks like I held up a bank again." She drooped.
"Held up a-" Bulma stammered, before glaring at Krillin, "Did you two beat up police officers?!"
"Goku did." Krillin stammered in defense, "We heard someone calling for help! We thought they were bandits in disguise!"
And Bulma whirled back to Launch, "And what do you mean it "looks like" you held up a bank? Again?! Did you or didn't you?!"
Launch rubbed the back of her head sheepishly, "Well, you did save me, so I suppose it's only fair. Whenever I sneeze, I change personalities." She drooped a bit more, "And the other me is bad and likes causing problems."
"Jekyll and Hyde, huh?" Bulma responded, nonplussed, "Yeah, that sounds like a problem."
"What?!" Krillin gasped, "That's ridiculous! Don't tell me you believe that!"
Bulma looked at him and raised her eyebrow. "Why wouldn't I? Have you never seen magic before, Krillin? She was probably hit by some sort of magic spell."
"There's no way! I've never seen magic! Ki, sure, but magic?" Krillin responded, shaking his head.
Bulma rolled her eyes, and with a small puff of smoke, a large turquoise tiger was sitting proudly before them. Launch let out a little squeak of fear and backed up a step, while Krillin's jaw dropped, "Satisfied?" Bulma asked sardonically, before popping back into human form. "Anyway, if it WAS a magic spell, then perhaps Roshi's sister will be able to help us. He told me that he's going to ask her to help train me, so maybe she could do the same to you."
"Oh, that would be wonderful!" Launch clapped her hands together with a bright smile, "At the very least, if we can both be awake it would really help us!"
"WHOOOOO!" Roshi broke into the conversation from the window as Goku finally got him out of the bathroom, making Launch nearly jump out of her skin. "You boys did it!"
"Goodness me!" Launch held her hand to her heart.
Bulma nipped it in the bud, delighting in ruining Roshi's little games, "Happy now, you old pervert? Can we start training?"
"Pervert?" Launch blinked rapidly.
Roshi bit back a groan, "That was uncalled for, young lady. I am a model senior citizen."
Bulma smirked back nastily, "Hop on the Nimbus then, Roshi."
Roshi coughed into his fist, "Well young lady, I am teaching these three martial arts. Perhaps you would like to join us?"
"Oh, heavens me, it sounds like fun." Launch smiled in good humor, "But if you're stronger than they are, your training must be really tough."
Roshi let out a little laugh, "Indeed, but martial arts are good for the health of your body and soul. Besides, there are beginner courses."
Krillin grinned at Launch, "You can't pass this up, Miss Launch. There's not a Martial Artist on this earth who would pass up training from the venerable, invincible Master Roshi."
Launch smiled, "My, I had no idea you were such a celebrity! I can't really say no to that, then. Though I am more interested in this magic that miss Bulma was telling me about. That was quite a cool trick she showed us!"
"Ah, the transformation technique?" Roshi asked, getting a nod, "Well, I can't say I know that one myself. Still, it is quite useful indeed." He coughed into his hand again, before pulling out a package, "Anyway, here will be your uniform."
Bulma's eye twitched, and she grabbed the package out of Launch's hands and looked inside. She shut the lid and gave Roshi the dirtiest look of her life, "Roshi I swear on the great god of technology-"
Roshi yelped and grabbed it back, making a show of looking inside, "M-My mistake. I grabbed the wrong one." He hurried into the house, before exiting with more packages, "They were right next to each other, Bulma. It was an innocent mistake. Here are the right ones." He handed them out to each of them. Launch immediately started grabbing at her crop top, before Bulma rolled her eyes at Roshi and Krillin and grabbed her arm, marching her into the house so they could change in peace. "Drat! Why did I not just send her to Baba?" Roshi groaned to himself under his breath.
"Excellent!" Roshi exclaimed, once they were all back. All four of them were wearing orange pants and Gi's, with blue wrist bands and boots. There were no other markings on them, as they were just training Gi's. The only difference was… the girl's uniforms were a bit tighter, and much to Bulma's consternation, they were also midriff baring. "Now-" A wasp buzzed in front of him, "Shoo!" he swatted at it, and it flew towards the rest of them.
Bulma flinched as it passed her and swatted at it as well, and then it brushed by Launch's nose before Goku cut it in half with a chop of his hand, "Oh no~" Launch exclaimed, scrunching her face up before sneezing, "Achoo!"
And then her head completely changed. Her eyes sharpened and also changed colors to green, becoming smaller in size, while her dark-blue hair turned as blonde as Bulma's mom. Even her voice became rougher and harsher, "Where the hell am I!? This doesn't look like any jail I've ever seen!" And then to their shock, she pulled out a submachine gun from somewhere and yelled, "You! You brought me here!"
Before Launch could begin shooting, Bulma whipped her hand forward with finger gun extended and landed a precise Ki blast on it, burning a hole through the firing mechanism and making Launch leap back in shock, "Calm down, Launch!"
"My gun?!" Launch gasped, "What in the hell was that?!"
"We helped out the other you!" Goku said cheerfully, "You agreed to train here with us. Where did you pull that gun from, by the way?" He asked curiously.
"Helped me? People don't hel- Achoo!" She turned back into her blue self, "Oh, bother." She said cutely, smiling at them, "I hope I didn't do anything too obnoxious."
"Ahahaha! You're fun, Launch!" Goku laughed, while Krillin and Roshi sweatdropped.
"Uhhh….right." Roshi coughed again, "Anyway, this little old island is too small for us to train, so give me a moment to get the house in order so we can go." He walked up to the house, pressed a button, and a BAMF had it sealed into a capsule.
"Huh, wasn't expecting that. How old is the house?" Bulma asked, "Pretty rare to see an older style like this one be capable of being sealed in a capsule."
Roshi giggled as he picked up the little device, "Well, it was a bit of a bother, but I had it custom built about thirty years back. Right around the time your father started perfecting his work."
"Ah, that makes sense." Bulma looked at him shrewdly, "Won a few tournaments in your time, huh? That couldn't have been cheap back then."
"You got it." Roshi laughed, before throwing a different capsule and unsealing a hoverboat with a large fan in the back. "Alright, everyone in!"
Bulma eyed it. It was a good model. Nice and fast. But it was pretty small. She said as much, mentioning that they'd probably be too squished in there, "Goku and I will fly. Where are we going, Old Timer?"
"Fly? Oh, did you manage to sit on the Nimbus?" Roshi asked her curiously.
"I did!" Bulma exclaimed happily, hiding a smirk. She wasn't talking about the Nimbus. She held out her phone, "So, which island are we going to?"
Roshi made the map a bit smaller, and pointed it out after scrolling south, "This one here. It's about twenty kilometers away. We'll be set up on the tallest peak on the eastern side of the island."
"Thanks!" Bulma said, before calling for Nimbus. "Here you go, Launch!" She patted the cloud.
"Thank you, Bulma!" Launch replied cheerfully, before sitting seiza on it. She also patted the cloud, mimicking her new friend, "Hop on!"
Bulma grinned, "Oh yeah, old timer?" She smirked at Roshi, "I wasn't talking about Nimbus. Come on, Goku!" She blasted into the air, getting a gasp from everyone but Goku.
"Ahaha! Your faces! See you there! Keep up, Nimbus!" Goku laughed, before launching after Bulma. Launch squealed as the cloud sped after them.
Roshi turned and gave Krillin a bit of a dirty look, "I don't suppose you're going to just fly off too, huh?"
Krillin started to sweat, instantly realizing that he was pretty far behind the one who he had called 'the girl.' "N-No master." He meekly sat in the hovercraft, before they followed the fliers by sea.
"Well now, I wasn't expecting you to have your own capsule house as well." Roshi mumbled, looking at the much larger, more traditionally 'Capsule Corp' domed home next to his Kame House.
Bulma smirked, her hands on her hips, "Oh please, I'm a city gal. Don't you remember?"
"Is it training time?" Goku asked, hopping up and down and almost looking like he was doing a dance as he warmed up.
"Yes, yes." Roshi let out a sigh, "Let's hop to it." He turned to Launch, "You can join us if you'd like, my dear. Or you may do as you wish."
Launch smiled prettily, "I guess I can make us dinner."
"Nah, I have that handled. My house is pretty high tech." Bulma said, "Would be nice to have another gal. What do you say?"
"Okay! Let's do it!" Launch replied cheerfully. It seemed that was her default mode, really.
"Very well then. Bulma, I know Goku has been training you, so Krillin, do you have any martial arts training?" Roshi asked his shortest pupil.
"I do, master! I trained for eight years at the Orin temple." Krillin replied.
"Hmm, excellent. And you, my dear?" He asked Launch.
"I haven't." She shook her head, "My other half might have, though. Not really sure."
"It'll have to do. Let's see your strengths and weaknesses now, then." He placed his foot on the small boulder by them, "This rock is precisely one hundred meters from that tree." He said, pointing to it, "Let's see how fast you can run it. Not that a fast runner necessarily makes a better martial artist, but it's never a bad thing to have strong legs. I'm going to go stand by the tree with a stopwatch."
Krillin stood smugly with his hands on his hips, "I'll go first then. You'll see legs good enough to qualify for the Olympics!" He took his mark, and as soon as Roshi yelled 'go,' he was off like a shot.
"Huh, guess he isn't just a braggart." Bulma mused. Krillin was indeed pretty fast. Per Master Roshi, he ran an 'unbelievable' 100 meters in 10.4 seconds. Considering the current world record holder was significantly taller than the boy, those were indeed some legs.
Krillin huffed a tiny bit, "Not bad, huh? My record is 10.1, but that wasn't too bad."
"You want to go next, Bulma?" Goku asked.
"Sure!" Bulma took her mark, waiting for Roshi's go. The second he shouted it, she surged forward. And she was fast!
Roshi's eyes widened, "My, my, you've come a long way since we first met, young Bulma." He said, glancing at the stopwatch, "10.9 seconds."
Bulma panted, "Holy cow. I knew Goku's training was effective, but I couldn't have done that in double the time before I met him! Even on the 50 meter, my best time in school was like 12 seconds."
"Feels good, don't it?" Roshi gave her a toothy grin, which she returned. "Your turn, Launch!"
"Okay…" Launch said, a little apprehensively, and took her stance. She rushed forward, much slower than the other two, "Wow, 12.4 seconds? I guess my other half did have some training!" She breathed heavily.
"Indeed, an impressive run." Roshi nodded, "Perhaps you'll be able to handle the intermediate lessons, rather than just the beginner."
"Looking forward to it! That was fun!" Launch hopped on her heels, which made her breasts jiggle. Roshi immediately zeroed in.
Bulma rolled her eyes, jabbing him on the cheek with a finger, "Eyes off, old timer. You still have to measure Goku."
Roshi shook his head, "Ah… right." He said, resetting the stopwatch again, "Ready Goku?"
"Ready!" Goku called out, grinning.
"Hah! What kind of stance is that?" Krillin crowed, seeing the other boy not taking the proper starting pose. Bulma merely smirked, not saying a word.
"Go!" Roshi yelled, and the rest of them except for Bulma dropped their jaws as Goku shattered the world record by a mile. Krillin merely looked on in dumbfounded horror. "9…9.2 seconds. My word! What a run!" He then blinked as Goku simply sat down and pulled at his feet, "What's the matter?"
"Ah, my shoe's busted!" Goku turned around, revealing his soles had split from the rest of his footwear, "It ripped about thirty meters from the tree." His footwear actually looked pretty old.
"What?" Krillin and Roshi asked dumbly.
"Yeah, let me go grab new shoes and I'll try it again." Goku said, and a few minutes later was hopping up and down, "Yeah, that feels better. I'm ready, master!"
"O…kay…" Roshi was sweating, "Ready? Set? Go!"
Goku kicked off so hard that the ground beneath him broke, sending up a small dust cloud. He passed by Roshi so fast that his beard and mustache waved in Goku's wake. Roshi stared at the stopwatch, dumbfounded, "6…6.7 seconds." Krillin keeled over, almost foaming.
"Good going, Goku!" Bulma cheered, hugging her friend. Goku grinned happily.
"That was incredible. You're all quite outstanding students." Roshi said, "And while we do have an…outlier…" he sweatdropped, wondering how in the hell he was supposed to keep Goku from getting a fat head if he was already this strong, "You're mostly still within human limits. In order to become masters of martial arts, you must break the wall of humanity! That will be your challenge!" He handed the stopwatch to Krillin, "Here, clock my time for me." He told Krillin as he pulled off his turtle shell.
They all stood by as Roshi walked over to the rock, and called out that he was ready. "Okay Master! Go!" Krillin called. And Master Roshi exploded from the start line. He was running much faster than he otherwise would have, due to Goku's amazing feat (and feet). His crater went even deeper than Goku's and he seemed to have a shimmering aura around him. When he passed them, all four of them yelped as they slid back three inches. And then Roshi simply stopped, his momentum cutting completely to zero in an instant. It was a display of bodily control that utterly boggled the mind. He stood there in a running pose, not even breathing hard. He turned to them with a toothy grin, "So, how'd I do?"
Krillin gulped, "…3.8 seconds."
Bulma looked awed as she swore in her head.
Roshi grabbed his shell, "Not bad for an old codger, eh?" He placed it back on, "That is what I mean by breaking the human wall. With training and discipline, you should all be capable of breaking the five second barrier." He scratched his beard, "Anyway, all that running has me thirsty. Can you go grab me a beer, Krillin?"
"Y-yes master." Krillin ran off, sweating heavily at the fact that Goku was so much better than him, and that Roshi still had them all beat.
Roshi had tried to pull a 'dinner withheld' routine before the day was over. He'd tossed a rock over the cliff and told them that only the one who found it and brought it back would get to eat. Bulma had firmly put her foot down, overriding every protest the old master had. He'd thought it was just the 'city girl' kicking in, but it hadn't been. Bulma was well educated and knew full well that starvation would just lead to developmental issues later. If he wanted to train discipline in his pupils, there were plenty of other ways to do it.
Roshi had, after a thirty-minute argument between them, realized that Launch, Goku, and Krillin had just left after not being able to get a word in edgewise, and were already preparing dinner.
Well, Goku and Launch were. Krillin couldn't cook to save his life. Defeated, Roshi had grumpily eaten his food while mentally reevaluating his plans. He got his revenge early the next day.
Roshi snapped awake instantly while Krillin somehow continued to sleep. "Krillin, wake up! It's training time!" He yelled at the boy, who immediately protested that it was only four in the morning. "And are you going to be a crybaby or are you going to get up and train?" He got dressed and sighed, starting to make his way up the stairs, before his eyebrow twitched, "Ah yes, Miss Bulma's house." He had an evil smile on his face as he grabbed a pot and pan and left Kame House.
He entered quietly… and then his eyebrow started twitching far more violently. Goku was in bed with not only Bulma, but Launch as well. Bulma had miscalculated in immediately telling Launch that she could room with them as she didn't trust Roshi. She'd forgotten that, with her intention of cuddling with Goku, she'd only gotten the single room capsule house. Oh, it was innocent enough. Bulma was using him as a teddy bear, with him as the little spoon. But Launch had rolled over in her sleep and was accidentally all but pressing her boobs into Goku's face. 'You lucky little monkey-butted-' Feeling as if he was going to burst a blood vessel, Roshi clapped the pot and pan together with a loud CLANG!
"WAHHHH!" Three voices screeched in tune, jumping a mile into the air, and entangling themselves in the sheets.
Roshi then had several milliseconds to contemplate his mistakes as Goku and Bulma wildly pointed fingers at him and Launch yet again pulled a gun out of nowhere. BANG FWOOOSH twin beams of plasma (one red and one turquoise) shot at him, followed a half second later by a stream of bullets.
Roshi held his hand out with a coating of Ki, slapping both beams just enough that they passed by him harmlessly before he caught all five bullets between his fingers.
"…What the fuck?!" Launch asked in awe.
"Rise and shine." Roshi did not have a distinctively nasty tone in his voice. Not at all.
"Rise and-" Bulma grit her teeth, "There needs to be a sun out for any shine, asshole!" She yelled at him, her teeth sharp and pointy like a shark's and her head significantly larger than it should have been.
"Oh, don't worry, there will be plenty of it during training." Roshi said, "If you don't want a wake up like this every day, I suggest you set your alarm for four. Now up and at em. It's breakfast time and then we're getting started."
Bulma fell back into the bed, pressing her palms into her eyes with her fingers just below her ears. Her face stretched as she dragged her hands, with Goku being the only one unaffected by the ordeal and happily hopping out of bed, his tail wagging excitedly. "Why did I agree to do this?" She asked the ceiling in despair. She hated being out of bed at the ungodly hour of midday unless she planned for it.
"You? Why the fuck did the other me agree to this shit?" Launch threw the blanket off of her and Bulma as she hopped over the other girl.
Bulma swung her legs out of bed, "I told you to wear boxers." She deadpanned as Roshi's sunglasses were glued to Launch's ass.
Launch scoffed, "Let the old man look. Once I'm strong enough I'll get my revenge."
Roshi blinked, "Wait a minute, since when do you have a tail, Bulma?" He was 100% sure she did not have such a vibrant appendage that day at the beach, and as she had used it not unlike a belt the past day, he had not noticed it before. "It's not contagious is it?"
Now Launch was looking at her warily, but Bulma merely smirked, "Who knows? Maybe it is?" She laughed at their faces, "Don't worry. It's not. Though I suppose if you want one it's possible. Just not any time soon." She then glared at Roshi, hands on her hips.
"…Right. I'll just… leave you to it." Roshi glumly left the capsule house.
"Fucking pervert." Launch grumbled, taking off her nightshirt.
"He blocked our damn Ki blasts. I hate to say it, but we've got a long way to go before we can teach him a lesson." Bulma responded.
Launch grudgingly nodded, "He's an old codger, but damn if he's not strong. My guns did nothing." She took her new uniform from Goku and slipped it over her head, before she stopped with her arms in the air, freezing. She stood there for two seconds, before she resumed getting the garment on, "Hey kid, how old are you?"
"Huh? Fourteen." Goku replied, tying his sash.
"F-four-" Launch's revolver materialized in her hand, "So, you're a little pervert too huh?!" She started squeezing the trigger, and Goku reached up and stuck his finger in the barrel. BANG! The revolver bulged cartoonishly as the gasses escaped out the sides, just barely missing burning her hands. She gaped at her destroyed weapon.
"Geez, can you stop trying to shoot at us? It's not going to work." Goku stopped, before his lips quirked, "Well, maybe on Krillin."
Launch made a vow then and there. She was going to make her precious guns relevant again or die trying.
"At last, we begin your education in the Kame-Sen School Bujutsu… The Arts of the Turtle Master." The four of them stood attentively, "But first, let me say a few words about Martial Arts. One does not study Martial Arts in order to win a fight or have girls say oooh~, you're so strong . One masters those arts for health in mind and body. For the ability to live one's life as courageously, uniquely, and energetically as one wished. But-" His brows furrowed, and he leaned in, "If there are any who seek to terrorize you or any other decent people with undeserved power, you must defeat such enemies with one mighty blast! Do you understand what I am saying?"
"Yes!" The four nodded, though Launch much less enthusiastically.
"Good." Roshi turned, "Then let's begin. First, some light jogging. Keep up."
After a few minutes, Krillin couldn't help but muse as quietly as he could, "Huh, I'd heard the invincible old master's training regimen was really tough, but this doesn't seem bad at all."
Bulma and Goku both heard him with their enhanced Saiyan ears, and Bulma bit back a groan. 'Does this pachinko head not have a single genre-savvy bone in his body?'
A few minutes more, and they were in town. The sun was just barely starting to rise, "HALT!" Roshi called, and then went close to one of the businessmen. A milk peddler who was a humanoid ox. The humanoid was stacking four boxes of milk in front of the entrance.
'Called it.' Bulma shook her head, already walking over before Roshi had even called for them.
"Oho, a smart cookie, huh?" Roshi grinned as she grabbed the top crate.
"Wasn't that hard to guess." Bulma shrugged.
The penny dropped for Launch, "You gotta be kidding me! We're delivering milk? That's just a regular chore! I thought we were going to learn martial arts!"
Roshi laughed, "You've gotta crawl before you can walk, young lady. An unprepared body cannot handle my training. This will be good exercise and a litmus test for you all."
"Wait!" The Ox gasped, "Don't tell me you're planning on doing it on foot?! You're not going to use the helicopter?!"
"Don't be silly. It wouldn't be training if we did that." Roshi laughed, and the other three grabbed their crates. Launch was steaming as she wondered what kind of scam Roshi was running. "Okay, now after me. We'll do the 2 kilometers to the first house… skipping."
For the first time, Launch started to sweat a bit. 2 kilometers to the first house? How many houses were there?
The quintet skipped all the way to the first house as commanded, and a clear difference had already shown itself. Goku and Roshi were as cool as cucumbers. Not a bit of sweat. Bulma would have keeled over and died five hundred meters in before she had met Goku, but now she was just sweating somewhat lightly. Her Saiyan physiology was helping a great deal here. Krillin was falling behind fairly consistently, and was huffing by the time they made it to the first house.
Launch? Her hair was matted with sweat already, but she refused to be the first one to drop, no matter how much her legs were already starting to scream.
"You've got the four empties?" Roshi asked as Krillin unloaded his bottles and grabbed the used ones. "Good!" Roshi said, before pointing his staff, "For the next kilometer, we'll zigzag this tree-lined path." Rather than running along the road, they exited and entered back onto the path as they zipped around the trees. At the next house, Krillin and Launch were lagging behind, while Bulma was huffing and puffing. Goku and Roshi were still as fresh as daisies. "You two are lagging behind!" He chided Krillin and Launch. "Take too long and the milk will go sour."
"Fuck you, old man!" Launch gasped for breath, hunching over, "I'll fucking drink it myself!" She tried to grab a bottle, only for Roshi to seemingly teleport and lightly whack her hand with his staff. "OW! Fuck!"
"Language." Roshi deadpanned, "And put that bottle away. Next one is three kilometers away."
"I'm going to die." Launch whimpered, wishing there was a bank to hold up.
They made it to a river, and Roshi stopped when he saw Launch was blue-haired and panting heavily, "You look tired, my dear." Launch nodded silently, but shook her head when Roshi asked if she wanted to quit. Internally, she said to herself that there was no way she was going to be the one to quit. A surprisingly strong statement from the blue Launch. "Very well!" He pointed at the river, "These rocks are spaced just far enough for you to be able to jump from one to the other. Careful not to fall in, or you'll have to work for our dear friend the milk peddler when the training is done every day." He leapt from rock to rock, making quick work of the course. Goku followed, giggling as he did so while skipping stones. Bulma also tried skipping, but slipped on one of the rocks and had to hurriedly save herself by flying. She was now wet down to her knees, and the extra exertion added to her exhaustion. She refused to stumble any more, and followed after Goku, albeit with the proper sequence of stones. She did not try to skip any again. Krillin and Launch both had to take breaks while the other three waited on the other bank. But neither fell, and they made it to the other end. It was Launch's turn to place the milk, and she was elated that she had been able to do it!
"Excellent work, you four!" Roshi praised, before pointing his thumb behind him, "Next one is up these stairs." He turned as Bulma, Krillin, and Launch whimpered at the sight. They had to crane their eyes way up, and they couldn't even see the top. "I suppose you don't need to take this one at a run." He said, before starting to hop his way up. Goku immediately followed him, though by the time he made it up and delivered his four bottles, he was a bit more tired than he had been, and was starting to sweat.
"Fucking kill me." Bulma moaned, before she started making her way up as well. She made it about a quarter of the way before she was forced to take a seat, gasping for breath. Krillin made it about the same, stopping a few feet after her in a complete refusal to be beaten by a girl. This had Bulma's eye twitching, and she hurriedly got to her feet and started making her way up again. She got another two quarters of the way before needing another break, her legs screaming at her. Krillin didn't make it up to her again before she got up and finished the trek. Krillin made it up a few minutes later, and Launch finally made it up almost ten minutes after him, once again blonde and crawling up the steps.
"Gonna… fucking… kill you…" She gasped, collapsing onto her front as she made it all the way up. She just was able to put the milk case down before flopping. Each of them had delivered exactly half of their bottles now.
"Going to be hard to do it from down there." Roshi happily ate the eye candy. Her Gi was so matted with sweat that it was clinging deliciously to her.
"As I live and breathe! Muten Roshi!" A somewhat squat, heavier, bald man came up to them, his hands inside his sleeves. "It's been a long time. And four students?" He smiled at all of them.
"Yes, they have some potential, don't they?" Roshi grinned slightly, "As long as they continue training, they should be able to enter the Tenka'ichi Budōkai in eight months should they wish it." He had a feeling not all of them would.
Krillin let out a shocked gasp, and spoke his first actual words in over an hour, "The "Strongest Under the Heavens!?" We're seriously going to-"
"What's that?" Bulma asked, interrupting him.
Krillin looked scandalized at their lack of knowledge, "They gather Martial Arts masters from all over the world and decide who is the "Strongest Under the Heavens." It's the greatest tournament in the world!" He whirled to Master Roshi, "Y-You really think we'll be good enough to enter?"
Launch finally managed to get off the ground, sitting cross legged. "Tch, I'll probably pass."
The monk stated, "Really? There is a 500,000 Zeni prize, you know."
"I said I'll pass on skipping it." Launch immediately corrected herself, getting snorts from the rest, money symbols in her eyes.
Roshi spoke up, "However, your goal will not be to aim for the title. Life isn't that easy. But if you aim for a decent placement in the tournament, you will strive all the harder in your training. Now that milk is getting warm, so let's go!"
Launch groaned, followed swiftly by Krillin and Bulma. But they obediently got up, with Launch musing that if Blue her hadn't quit, she sure as hell wasn't going to. They made their way to a gigantic log that was bridging a huge gap. They had to carefully balance on it as they walked across.
Disaster struck when a leaf brushed past Launch's nose, triggering her sneeze, and unbalancing her. She fell off the log, screaming. "Launch!" Goku yelled, tossing his crate to Roshi, and blasting off the log after her. He caught her in a princess carry, and she had such a death grip on her crate that she didn't even lose a bottle.
"Oh, my hero." She smiled weakly, trying to halt her pounding heart. "Thank you." She pressed her lips to Goku's cheek, holding it there for two seconds and giving him a smooch. Bulma frowned a little at the sight without noticing. She was too busy being relieved they had been able to catch the other young woman.
Goku giggled a bit, flying back to the log and setting her down, "You going to be okay?" He floated next to her.
"Yeah. That was just a really bad place to sneeze." She murmured as Goku checked her over one more time, before collecting his crate from Roshi. They made it the rest of the way across the log without further incident. Then they had to stomp through a huge sand pit, which really wanted to swallow them up. By the end of it, even Goku was starting to breathe heavily. Then they had to ford a river. A much more rapidly flowing one than the first river, so they had to take care not to get swept away. Bulma and Launch held hands doing it, not confident that the palette-swapper wouldn't get swept away.
And then a freaking dinosaur chased after them.
In the end, Goku was huffing and puffing at the end of their marathon. Krillin was flat on his back and gasping for air. Bulma had collapsed, face first in the grass with her butt in the air, which blonde Launch was using as a headrest.
Roshi showed no mercy, "Don't worry. It'll get easier as you do it for the next eight months. Anyway, that's it for your earlymorning training. Now for the morning routine."
Three students started to cry, and the last finally flopped onto his back.
"Well, now that you're rested from our little wakeup," Roshi said, knowing full well that they weren't, "It's time to get our day going." He pointed his staff at Krillin and Goku, "You two will be plowing these fields." He said, throwing his thumb back and pointing to the farmer in the distance. "Oh, and you'll be doing it barehanded."
"What?!" Krillin squealed in shock. Goku just shrugged, and started moving towards the field. Krillin was almost hanging his head and hunching as he followed the boy.
"B-Barehanded?" Blue Launch asked, "Isn't that dangerous? And what will we be doing?"
"Oh, you'll be joining them eventually." Roshi replied, only to get cut off by Bulma.
"What?!" She gasped, "But I told you I can't risk hurting my hands!"
"Part of Ki is spirit, girlie." Roshi shot back, "If you have the willpower of a wet noodle you'll never get anywhere with it." He leaned down and picked up a small rock, "And besides." He jabbed the rock with a single finger. It sank into the stone and cracked it into two pieces, "Ki can reinforce your body to prevent injuries. You'll never have to worry about breaking a nail again." He said, somewhat sarcastically.
Bulma ground her teeth, "Okay, so if we're not going to be plowing, then what are we doing?"
"You two are neophytes to Martial Arts." Roshi said, "Those two already have good bases from their years of training, so they don't need my help as much. You two on the other hand, will be practicing with me. Once I'm satisfied you have a good grasp of the basics, you'll begin joining the boys in their tasks as well." He eyed Bulma, "When we last spoke of it, I suggested leg-based styles. Did Goku keep to that?"
"He did." Bulma confirmed.
"Good. And are you happy with kicks as well, miss Launch?" Roshi asked.
"Hmmm." Launch tapped her chin cutely, "Yes, I think that works. I'm sure blonde me would prefer her hands free, after all.
"Then primarily kick-based styles it is." Roshi nodded, "Then we shall begin with Capoeira, Taekwondo, and a little bit of Muay Thai for flavor. Take this stance." He demonstrated, with the girls following. And off they went.
"Owwwww! My poor hands!" Krillin held his roughed-up and throbbing hands in front of him.
"What took so long? We're all starving, here." Roshi said, pointing to the two puddles of goo beside him.
Goku perked up. He was dirty as all hell, but wasn't exhausted, "Foooooood…"
"You'll have to start being faster tomorrow. These fields are only going to get bigger." Roshi said, before leading them away, "Now, let's eat." What followed was a crime against restaurants, as two Saiyans, a child, and a hungry, angry blonde Launch almost ate the shop out of food. Even Roshi was sweatdropping as he watched.
Soon, they went back to Kame House, and were seated on logs and chairs, "From now until lunch is study time. No martial artist becomes a master by strengthening their body alone. It is time to rest and train the mind instead. We will begin with a study of the finest literature. Goku, begin reading from page 12."
Bulma opened her book to follow along, rolling her eyes hard at her having to sit in this lesson. And then her eye twitched, "'Don't bob, Please.' Moaned Margaret, 'Mama's coming hom-'"
Bulma stood up and threw her book flat across Roshi's face, knocking the old man off his log. She collected the other three books, dumped them on Roshi, and stomped into her capsule house. She came out a few moments later with a stack of new books, handed them off, and cleared her throat. "I'm assuming you're all at least where I managed to get Goku to, so we will begin with exponential growth and decay." She was proud to see Goku had at least tried to hide the groan.
Several hours later, Goku collapsed into his hammock with his brain fried. Krillin looked no better and Roshi looked like he was going to be sick. Surprisingly, Launch (and blonde Launch too! Hidden depths!) had enjoyed the lesson and had told Bulma she explained it better than her teachers ever did. "Are we going to do any physics?"
Bulma teared up, "Finally! Someone who actually likes the stuff I do!" She dabbed her eyes with a handkerchief she pulled out of… somewhere.
"Hehe!" Launch grinned, "Physics was fun. I actually learned how to ricochet a bullet because of it. Languages sucked though."
Bulma deadpanned, "Rolling with it. I'm glad you had fun!"
"Enough. It's time to nap and recharge!" Roshi put a stop to it before they fried his brain. He wasn't the one training here. He laid back in his own hammock, "Move well, study well, play well, eat well, rest well. That's the Kame School way."
An hour later, they were up and at 'em again, food digested, and bodies slightly rested, for those of them who weren't Goku. They quickly were tired out once again, and this time Roshi forced the two girls into the construction gig as well.
Three hours later, they were allowed to stop, "Excellent." Roshi nodded, bringing them to a nearby lake. This time, all four of them were sweating like pigs, though for Goku it was because of the sun shining overhead. He could have handled it better without it. "Next is swimming, seeing as you've sweat so much."
"Y-You mean we're not done yet?!" Krillin blurted before he could stop himself.
"DONE?!" Roshi raised his voice, "You've hardly begun!"
That made Krillin and Launch's heads spin. The only reason Bulma didn't join them was that she knew what Goku did every day, long before they ever came to this island.
Goku surprisingly looked unsatisfied, "Master, aren't you going to show us any new moves?"
Roshi reared back, hocking up a loogie and spitting it on the floor, much to Bulma's disgust, "You little fledglings! How dare you be so insolent! You haven't even laid the barest foundations of strength or stamina, and you expect me to teach you 'moves?'"
"You showed Bulma and Launch." Goku deadpanned.
"You were trained by a former student of mine, and Krillin was trained at a temple. You already have good foundations in that respect." Roshi replied bluntly, "I was just getting Bulma and Launch to the starting line." He then clacked his staff on a large boulder, "You'll get advanced techniques only when you've proved yourself and built up enough to move that boulder!"
Launch (Blue, clapping her hands to her lips in shock) and Krillin gasped, "That's impossible! Nobody can move a boulder like that."
"Oh really?" Roshi turned to it, placed his hands on it, and with a small grunt, pushed it roughly ten feet away with a single shove.
"…Oh Kami…" Krillin looked faint, while Launch clapped excitedly.
"You see?" Roshi asked, hands behind his back.
Bulma had an entirely different reaction than he expected, "You should probably pick a bigger one." She smirked and pointed at Goku with her thumb as the young-looking boy casually walked up to the boulder.
Krillin and Launch's jaws fell to the floor as Goku grunted, sinking his fingers into the rock the same way Roshi had shattered the smaller one in the fields. With another grunt, he lifted the rock clear over his head, walked ten feet, and then put it back where it had been before the master pushed it. He jumped up and sat on it, smiling cheekily, "Like that?"
Roshi gaped. Gohan couldn't have done that so easily after he completed his year of training.
Krillin was stammering, "He-He just- What did? How the-" Launch looked like she was going to keel over in shock, and Bulma's smirk merely got wider.
Roshi started laughing a little nervously, "Hahaha, silly me! Anyone could move that tiny thing." Bulma rolled her eyes as he brought them to a much bigger rock. "I meant this one." Goku was making this hard. The little monkey was so much stronger than the rest of them that what was currently impossible for him might actually be impossible for the other three. "And seeing as you decided to show off, I will only consider your training complete when you can do the same to this boulder, Goku. The other three will simply need to push it."
"Works for me." Goku said, and decided to get an estimation for it. He placed his hands on it and growled, managing to push the rock about three inches when he pushed with all his might.
'…What in the name of Kami IS he?' Roshi thought to himself in shock.
"Phew, that's going to be tough." Goku grinned, "I look forward to our next battle, Mr. Boulder." He spun around, stretching his arms, "Let's get to it!" he said cheerfully, walking back towards the lake, already starting to take off his Gi.
"Wait." Bulma stopped them as Krillin (and Launch) started stripping as well. She thanked herself for being prepared, pulling out a single capsule from a pocket she had sown on the inside of her Gi top. She clicked it and threw it, allowing it to explode and revealing a privacy box and a wardrobe. She casually grabbed two swimming jammers for Goku and Krillin since they were similarly sized, even if Goku was taller. "Come on, Launch."
The bluenette followed Bulma in. A few minutes later, they came out (one of them blonde following a sneeze) in their own swimsuits. Roshi started to drool, and Goku again felt funny as he stared at the two women. Krillin emulated the dirty old man, though he hid it better. It was like a real life Sukumizu comic!
Bulma held back from smacking the master again, "Well?"
Roshi shook himself, "Right. Ten laps to the farthest shore and back. Goku, twenty."
Bulma frowned, 'Something's off.'
Krillin grinned as he leapt in, "Finally, something easy." The three followed.
"Nothing to it! A veritable siesta!" Roshi smirked as the water erupted behind them. Bulma screamed and shot past even Goku, "Just watch out for the shark!" He had a grand old time watching it, and once they were back and dressed in their Gi's again (just slipping it over their swimsuits and resolving to just wear them underneath the Gi from now on) they quickly found themselves tied to trees.
"Roshi, I SWEAR TO KAMI!" Bulma screeched as she desperately tried to dodge the bees, and quickly started getting stung.
"I'm going to fucking MURDER YOU!" Launch had whipped out her submachine gun and futilely tried to just shoot every bee down. There were thousands of them, so this quickly became a lesson in failure.
"If you don't dodge them quickly, you'll only be stung more!"
Roshi dodged Bulma's fists and Launch's bullets as the two women attacked him. "YOU ASSHOLE! THE OTHER ME IS ALLERGIC TO BEES!"
Bulma stopped the violence for a spit take, "Wait, how is only one of you allergic?!"
"Fuck if I know!" Launch threw the pistol away and whipped out a shotgun, "DIE!"
"Oh dear, my apologies. I'll exempt you from the bees and throw rocks at you instead." Roshi commented carelessly. "Anyway," he quickly surged forward, and judo threw Launch, disarming her. He followed that up with tripping Bulma and sending her sprawling. "You did well for today. That's it until tomorrow, so the rest of the day is yours."
Krillin moaned, "S-Sensei, th-the type of training we underwent today… do we have to do this e-every day?"
"Of course not." Roshi replied, and Krillin let out a sigh of relief. Bulma hated that she did as well. "Today was just a warm up."
Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.
"W-Warm up?" Bulma stammered in disbelief.
"Of course. They don't call me the Kame Sennin for nothing, you know." Roshi grinned just a bit, "Starting tomorrow, you'll be doing the same exercises you did today… but carrying these 20 kg shells." He dropped a shell on the ground, and it made a loud thud.
"Oh… that's going to make things a little harder." Goku commented, staring at it with a bit of a sweatdrop as Krillin, Launch, and Bulma started to cry.
"Not you." Roshi said. Goku blinked, pointing to himself. Roshi nodded, "You get this one." He walked into the house, and they heard a grunt. He came back out, walking steadily but a little slowly. While the other shells were blue, this one was Goku's favorite red. "You get this 50 kg one."
Krillin flopped onto his face. Goku simply smiled, "Challenge accepted."
Quite a bit of time had passed, as the quartet undertook Master Roshi's training. Summer had melted into Fall, which had passed into Winter. And yet they never deviated. Every morning they delivered milk, and in the afternoons they plowed fields and worked in construction. The frozen ground had provided extra discomfort for their hands, and they had quickly learned (or taught, in Goku's case) how to use their inner Ki to protect their bodies. They would have frozen over quite quickly just from the swimming if they hadn't, even if it was uncomfortable.
Bulma and Launch had taken a month and a half before they joined the two boys in manual labor on the fields. After that, Roshi had shown no mercy. Bulma at least had Saiyan physiology and her growing Ki. Launch had no such luck. The poor woman had started from the beginning, and her hands and fingers were essentially in perpetual agony for three solid months. Both of the Launches came fairly close to throwing in the towel, and none of them would have begrudged her if she had.
But, she hadn't. It was interesting to see, as both Launches became more… in sync. When they'd met, neither of them knew anything that happened while the other was 'awake.' What happened to one was not at all remembered by the other, and it was only the knowledge of what they were doing every day that kept them from being extremely confused day in and day out.
That had stopped being an issue about two months in. Where once each Launch had been "asleep," now they were more… in the back seat. They started to wonder if the two would simply merge, or if they would learn to control the switches. In any case, the two twins in a single body had the most catching up to do, and the switches enabled them to push through where one of them might have quit.
And it was a joy to watch the bluenette become more confident, and the blonde become less…trigger happy. Now she only shot at Roshi when he was being especially perverted, and hadn't shot at Goku or Bulma in months! Progress!
And after five months, more than just Launch had made exceptional amounts of progress. Bulma had become an adept fighter. Krillin and Goku were obviously far more skilled than her, but she had quickly shot past the bald boy in sheer power, though never quite catching up or even approaching Goku. As predicted, she had focused heavily on lower body, and had developed quite a good kick-based style with Goku and Roshi's help. That wasn't to say she couldn't fight with her fists and elbows, but she had actually developed a very good deal of control over her Ki. In some ways, she was becoming better at it than even Goku, and had developed an Energy Blade technique, which she could further alter into different shapes. It completely lacked the power of Goku's version (with his being potent enough to cut through hers unless she used much more Ki than she wanted to) but it was far more versatile.
But she had not just focused on her new (likely Saiyan derived) enjoyment of fighting. Oh no, while she did actually really love it, she loved her science FAR more. And while the spaceship was grand, she had already seen and fixed Jaco's spaceship as a child, and it wasn't incredibly different from that one. She had gotten copies of all of the data on it, and then shelved clothes that Goku had shown her had caught her attention far more. A material that was incredibly soft, could stretch to hundreds of times its original size, and ALSO functioned as bulletproof armor? They would advance material sciences by decades!
She had immediately started analyzing it, starting with the jumpsuit. It had been relatively easy, and it had only taken her a few weeks before she was confident she could recreate it. A quick trip back home with Goku (Roshi had been very reluctant to let them leave, and so they had promised to tack on more weight on their shells) and Bulma had brought back some small-scale fabricators. She'd dropped off the Attack Ball for her father to look at after getting a few promises that he would be extremely wary of any possible self-destruction traps. It took a few more attempts than expected, but she'd ended up with a perfect replica of the original. She'd then moved on to the armor, which included the boots, the actual armor plate, and the gloves. Those had taken her a whole three months of work before she was able to replicate it perfectly.
She loved sleep, but sleep didn't really like her during those months. Goku had needed to drag her out of her lab more than once.
She then obviously went all in on bettering them. She was a scientist after all. The original design of the actual armor had been a bit clunky, so she had improved them, getting rid of the shoulder and crotch plates. It did sacrifice some protection obviously, but they just made it kind of hard to walk in. Plus, she thought the shoulder plates looked kinda ridiculous.
In the end, she had created some very nice outfits for her friends. Goku's bodysuit was a deep red, and she had made a flowing black vest with a long backside that he kept secured via his tail, making it look like he wore a red sash as well. His gloves and boots were recreated Battle Armor pieces, in black with red highlights. It really was his color.
For Launch, she'd gone with simple black, and she'd taken the redesigned armor plate as well, seeing as Bulma had made it look sexy. Her bodysuit was actually just a singlet, and she wore the strapless chest armor over it.
Bulma herself had gone all out on hers. She loved the color orange and also liked black. With the new material, she'd created a two-toned set of pants that were primarily black, but had an orange flare racing up the side. Her top was also full body, going up to her neck and down to her wrists. Black and orange vambraces covered her forearms, and her boots had been recreated with the new material, looking sporty and matching in her favorite colors. Her own turquoise tail wrapped around her waist.
She looked damn good… and the material was magic. It was illegally soft, breathed well, never let sweat pool up, never really got dirty, and functioned perfectly well as a swimsuit. Plus, they had some inbuilt hydrophobic qualities, so the water just ran right off as soon as they were done swimming for the day. Their clothes were almost completely dry a few paces away from the lake. If she hadn't already been aware magic existed, it would have made her a believer.
She wasn't the only one who grew though. Goku had developed well and even seemed to grow a few inches. His Kamehameha had grown strong enough that he could split the ocean with it, and he'd grown monstrously strong. Something he was demonstrating for Roshi right that second.
Five months down the line, and Roshi's sunglasses had been shattered by his eyeballs pointing out of his skull at the sight of Krillin pushing that massive boulder three whole feet. Bulma had then pushed it a further five feet, and even Launch had been able to make it budge a foot.
Goku put them all to shame, lifting it clear over his head. With a strained grin, the monkey boy threw it. It landed and shook the land beneath their feet before loud CRACKS rang through the air as part of the rock could no longer take the strain. It was rent down the middle, splitting into two different chunks.
The four of them grinned at Master Roshi, and Bulma slyly said, "Well, would you look at that. We all moved it and this little overachiever went and threw it."
Goku strolled up, "So, you going to teach us some moves now?"
'Darn, I had meant that to be an impossible challenge. Youngins sure are something.' Roshi wiped some sweat away, before coming clean, "I've got to be honest. There isn't actually all that much more that I can teach you four."
"Fucking called it." Bulma shook her head in amusement while Krillin and blonde Launch flipped out.
Roshi cleared his throat, blushing a little at the stream of expletives that Launch shot at him. "I didn't say I had nothing left, but the basics of the Kame-Sennin School of Martial Arts are all things you've already been training in the past five months. You may not have noticed, but your eyes, legs, fists… your entire bodies and even your minds have been forged like steel swords. All the fancy tricks in the world mean nothing in the face of what you four have already accomplished. None of you were meant to be capable of moving that boulder. It was supposed to be an impossible challenge. On the path of Budō, one doesn't strive for victory over an opponent. One strives to avoid defeat over one's self. This is the foundation that we have been setting these past months, and it is what you all must continue to build upon." He smiled, "Besides, you four have been working hard even outside of training. Goku has done well to teach you your Ki abilities, and creating your own techniques off of that such as Bulma has done with her various Spirit Blades should be a cinch."
He dropped his shell and slipped off his shirt, "Now, watch closely. Goku, you've done well to learn the Kamehameha Wave, but there is still much to learn. Perhaps one day you'll take it even farther than me." He bulked up, small sparks of lightning crackling around him. Roshi had not been idle. He damn well knew that if he did not pick up his own training once more, at minimum Goku would leave him behind. The young boy showing he could budge that giant boulder months ago had proven it. He could hardly teach him that vital lesson at the Budōkai if he couldn't win. He took his stance and slowly worked through the motions of his ultimate technique, "Ka…Me…Ha…Me…HAAAAAAAAAA!" A blindingly bright bluish white light almost blinded them, as Roshi threw his arms forward.
Where Goku's split the sea, Roshi's boiled it while throwing up massive walls of water everywhere the attack touched. After a moment, the beam suddenly veered upwards and out of the stratosphere, dissipating harmlessly. Roshi let out a steamy breath as he shrunk back down, "As you can see, there is still much more potential that can be drawn out of the Kamehameha Wave, and it can even be forced to change directions in mid-flight."
"It's definitely more powerful than dad's Riot Javelin…" Goku mumbled to himself, and only Bulma heard it. He spoke up, "Whenever I use it, it feels like it's much stronger than my first technique. It takes much longer though."
"That's because it is, and that's the point." Roshi said, "The Kamehameha Wave is no mere Ki blast. It is designed to amplify your power and allow you to take down stronger opponents than you would normally be capable of. The tradeoff is indeed the slower time to charge it. You CAN fire it like a normal Ki blast, but then it is barely more powerful than just using both of your hands." He grinned, "In other words, you still have far to go, my young pupil."
Goku smirked, "Bring it."
Roshi nodded, "For these last three months, you shall-"
Bulma cut in, "If it's all the same to you, Master," Bulma could respect the old man… some of the time. "You did promise us something when we spoke to you up on Frypan. When are we going to meet your sister?"
"Ah, that's right." Roshi mumbled, remembering the conversation. "Well, I did promise. I'll give the old bat a call. I can't promise the old crone will bite though. She was always... I'm going to stop there." The old master turned and walked away.
Launch turned to Bulma, "What's so special about this old crone?"
Bulma grinned, "She's Roshi's sister, and she specializes in magic. Goku and I both already know one spell, and it is super useful. We were hoping she could teach us more. Me especially, since back then I had very little skill with Ki. I couldn't even do a measly regular Ki blast. I didn't think I'd cut it with the martial arts thing."
"Oh, I remember now!" Launch smiled, having sneezed, and turned back into blue, "I had totally forgotten about it."
"Here's hoping that she can help you out!" Bulma high fived the other woman.
"Hello, big sister." Roshi nodded to the old, tiny woman floating on a crystal ball in front of them. Inwardly, he was surprised she had come, even if it was a month later than his call.
"Feh, you call for me so rarely I figured it would be interesting enough to take a look, at least." Baba responded to his thoughts and not his words.
"Grk. Never remember you were always better at telepathy." He muttered.
She snorted, "So, what's this about?" She eyed Goku, noting with surprise he was wearing the heaviest turtle shell she'd ever made for her little brother easily. "Need more shells for your pupils?"
Bulma stepped forward, and bowed, "Thank you for coming, All-Seeing Crone." She smiled.
"Name's Baba." The old woman replied, "And you are… Bulma of the Capsule Corporation. My, quite a famous student you've got here, twerp."
Roshi's eye twitched behind his sunglasses.
Bulma smirked, "When he began training us, Goku and I were interested in learning more magic." She quickly BAMFed into a little turquoise kitty, meowed, and turned back. "He said you were far more learned than he was."
Baba's eyes widened, and she burst out laughing, "Teach my secrets?! My, Roshi must quite like you lot if he thinks I'd be willing to do that."
Bulma's smile dipped a little, but she continued, "In any case, even if you decline to teach us, our friend Launch here could perhaps use your help."
"Oh?" Baba turned to Launch, "And why is that?"
Launch was currently blue, and she pulled out a feather and tickled her nose. "Achoo!" And the change happened instantly. "That answer yer question?" Blonde asked, smirking a bit.
"My, I've never seen that before." Baba admitted, hopping off her crystal ball and positioning it in between Launch and herself. It began to glow as she perused its insights, "Well, magic is certainly involved, but it is not the cause."
Their eyes widened in shock. Roshi spoke up, "We thought she might have had her personality split by a spell. One is kind and diligent, while the other is very aggressive."
"Not even close." Baba snickered, "They are, in fact, two souls inhabiting the same body." Their jaws all dropped, "I've never seen such a thing. Both of their souls have an incredible affinity for her body, and are almost mirrors of one another."
Launch bit her lip, "So we're stuck like this? We're always going to be stuck changing whenever we sneeze?"
"Not even close." Baba repeated herself, "Like I said, you two are mirrors. You're all but sisters. This dedication you've shown in your training has brought you closer together than ever before, and I'm sure you've both realized it."
It was true, too. As mentioned, both Launches were 'awake' in either form, even if one was 'driving.' Blonde had become a bit kinder, at least to her friends. Blue had become less tolerant of being taken advantage of. It had been interesting to watch them develop over the past six months.
Baba noticed her thinking it over, "That body belongs to you both, and the more in sync you become, the less you will need to 'switch.' Perhaps eventually, you may stop needing to switch altogether, as you both will be in control at the same time."
Launch smiled at the thought, and knew her other half was as well. "Thanks, Baba."
Baba smiled back, before turning to Bulma, "So, why should I teach you kids anything?" She asked.
Bulma shrugged, "Well, we certainly aren't interested in poaching on your fortune telling. Would you like payment?"
"Hey, why don't I get payment?!" Roshi asked indignantly.
"First of all, you offered to train us. Second of all, you DID make us "pay" you. I gave you a mountain of porn, and then you still made Goku and Krillin go find Launch, you old pervert." Bulma replied, flatly.
Roshi started to sweat as Launch turned to him, glaring slightly, "Oh yeah, I haven't shot at you in a while for that."
"N-Now, now," Roshi started backing up.
Baba started to cackle, "Oh, but I DO like you kids. I think I'd pay to see that, dear." She grinned, "Tell you what. I'll teach you, and I'll even give you a discount. All it'll cost you is a hundred million Zeni per person."
Krillin, Launch, and Roshi sputtered, spewing spit from their mouths. "ONE HUNDRED MILLION EACH?!"
Goku said nothing, as he had no idea how much things cost. He'd barely used money on his trip with Bulma, and it had been months since anyway.
Bulma's reaction took the cake. "About two yachts then? Yeah, that's fine." She replied, utterly nonchalantly.
"SHE SAID YES?!" Even Baba's dentures popped out.
"I'm out!" Krillin crossed his arms, "I'm out. I'll stick to the venerable old master's training!"
"What?!" Bulma whirled to him, "What do you mean?! I'm covering it, Krillin!"
"No way. I'd feel like I owe you and I'd never be able to pay that back. Ever." Krillin shook his head adamantly.
"We're friends! What the hell do you mean you'd owe me?!" She yelled back.
Roshi stepped up, "Let it go, lass. If Krillin doesn't want to, then he doesn't want to." He shrugged, "Some people are like that with money."
Krillin told her, "It's alright, Bulma. Magic would be cool, but I'm not that interested." He smirked, "Just you wait. While you're playing with magic, I'll be making some secret moves up!"
Bulma harrumphed, "Fine then." She sagged, turning to Baba, "Me, Goku, and Launch then." She turned to Launch, daring her to be stupid.
Launch laughed, "Hey, free eats is free eats!" She pecked Bulma on the cheek, "Thanks!" The bluenette blushed slightly.
"Three students huh." Baba muttered, "Gotta say, even my crystal ball didn't tell me that…"
The last two months passed quickly. As promised, Krillin had continued to train and tried to develop his own special technique in secret. Goku, Bulma, and Launch had begun with one of the simplest abilities; Magic Materialization.
Bulma was quite put out when she recreated the Saiyan outfit with a finger and a thought. That thought vanished when Baba explained that Magic Materialization could create items with any properties that they desired, as long as they had the power to create it. Bulma had quickly figured out how to create their outfits with extra weight, allowing them to shed their shells. Goku and Launch had learned it a little slower, but now they were freely capable of manipulating their outfits. Shedding weight was as simple as Magic Materializing clothes without that property. They didn't even have to take the clothes off. They could just change them while still wearing them.
Launch however took the cake. She immediately used the skill to create bigger and badder guns, and bullets with special properties. She didn't even need ammo. She could just make it.
Roshi had been quite displeased, even if she hadn't hurt him… too badly for all the perversion of the past months.
They'd also quickly absorbed telekinesis and telepathy, and were capable of lifting that extremely heavy boulder with their minds.
All of them also trained in secret, preparing heavily for the Tenka'ichi Budōkai. Launch had learned a special skill that none of the others knew about, as had they all. It was bound to be an epic time at the tournament.
And before they knew it? It was time. The tournament had arrived, and it was time to find out who the Strongest Under the Heavens was.
And there it is! I hope you all enjoyed it.
I know, I know, probably wasn't what you were hoping for after a two-year absence, but it wasn't like I could just skip Roshi's training. Or any of the rest of it. Actually, a fair bit happened in this chapter. Already got some decently big divergences. At least three characters who didn't, now know magic and Launch can just make G U N! We've also pulled out the weighted clothing several years early. What other special surprises will I pull out in the next chapter?
Now, the outfits! Launch's outfit is essentially Cheelai's from the Broly Movie, except black with a tank top instead of a shirt. Bulma's is actually an outfit I created for her in modded Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2. Full-body shirt with the Pride Trooper pants. Ao3 version of the story will have a picture included (Though that only shows the pants and general design. The top was Towa's top in the picture I found, and I have to find out how to remod the game because I had to delete everything to save space a few months ago). Goku's outfit is essentially Xeno Vegito's outfit, except with the Saiyan skintight suit rather than the puffier earth-style Gi pants.
Also, you can all thank Kairomaru for this! He's been begging for more Monkey God for over a year now.
Next up for me will likely be the pilot chapter of my MHA/DxD crossover. See you next time!