A/N: Ok, so this is one of those What if? Scenarios, except it's not with a show, its a What If? with my own story (Gemini Saga) For followers not past chapter 23, think of this as one of those alternate path kind of stories... This was an alternate idea I had, that I ultimately threw out, and put in my Scrapped Folder just in case I changed my mind. I looked it over and thought Hey, maybe I could write a side story with these different circumstances if people are interested... If you've gotten past Chapter 24, then you know why this is different.
For those just looking for something to read with no prior knowledge, feel welcome to read! There are a few oddities unique to this universe I've created that I'm sure you'll figure out soon~
As always, I do not own Dragon Ball Z.
I will go from where I left off at Chosen Dilemma, Chapter 22. Insert From Gemini Saga Eclipse. Do not skip this chapter until you have read what happens the next morning, which is where things begin to change. Ok, let's begin...
There was a crackling in the air as the two warriors met one another with a flurry of blows, Vegeta laughed cockily as Raditz flew back, growling.
"I suppose I do feel a slight difference, but you still have a long way to go before you can hope to harm me!" Vegeta sneered, entertained by causing Raditz to become more enraged.
"I'll show you exactly how much pain I can inflict!" Raditz growled back, irritated.
He rushed forward and reached to bear hug Vegeta into submission, but only scooped the empty air as Vegeta ducked. His agile opponent darted down and pummeled his abdomen with two fists, causing Raditz to crouch over. Raditz connected his own fists, then brought them down on Vegeta's head.
This time, Raditz was the one cackling cruelly as Vegeta rubbed his head angrily. The Prince then shook off the dizzying feeling and attacked him with even more gusto, wrapping himself around Raditz's back and yanking his tail up, at the same time as he wrenched his head back by his hair painfully.
"You little cretin! You still fight just as dirty as before!" Raditz grunted, as Vegeta laughed and tugged hard enough to arch Raditz's back. Raditz turned his head and sunk his teeth into Vegeta's fingers, snarling viciously. Vegeta clutched Raditz's skull and tore him away, holding his bloodied fingers then clenching them into a fist.
"How dare you, third class scum! You'll die choking with the taste of my elite blood in your throat!" Vegeta growled, glaring at the man who quickly backed away and snickered maliciously; unphased by Vegeta's empty threat.
"I may be third- class scum to you, but I do not stoop low enough to drink the growth-stunted blood of puny princes, Your Highness...With all due respect, I have no wishes to diminish my height." Raditz sneered, cracking his knuckles.
Vegeta could only bellow out an enraged growl as he blasted towards Raditz, taking his anger out on the hard, offending flesh. The two then became a whirling dervish of fists and legs, as Bulma and Launch watched, dumbfounded.
"You! You oversized hedgehog!" Vegeta cried out as Raditz finally escaped his wrath, slinging him over his shoulder so that he was face down and sputtering, disgusted by his proximity to Raditz's exposed backside.
Vegeta smirked and tweaked him in an area the girls couldn't see, then Raditz shot up, howling in pain, and whirled around to face him, his eyes bloodshot with anger.
"That was entirely unnecessary!" He spat, and strained as his muscle quivered, sweat beading his body, his long hair began to lift from his back. After the sneak attacks, they were both growing tired of childish games, sharing a simular boost of energy fueled by rage.
"It is necessary, because you're much more entertaining to fight when you're pissed off!" Vegeta responded, in an amused voice as he brought forth another wave of power, without even breaking a sweat.
There was a gust of wind as they rushed past, sending a mist over Bulma and Launch as they shrieked and shielded themselves from the whipping air. Bulma looked up, gulping.
"Is Vegeta... really that strong? I can't even see where they went!" She gasped, now fully drenched from the shockwave. Launch lifted one hand from the water, brushing back her hair so that she could watch as well.
"They're right over there, you didn't know how powerful he was just by the feel of his presence?" She said, narrowing her eyes. Launch was still getting accustomed to her new senses. She wasn't sure if that was the right way to describe the immense power she'd felt brewing within him, but it was too unmistakably strong to ignore. She was used to the steady, controlled pressure of Raditz's energy. She knew that he was strong by his own right, but this other saiyan was justridiculouslyfull of an erratically fluctuating ki.
"No... I didn't know... wow." She said with a dreamy sigh, and Launch chuckled, lifting her tail out of the water, then squeezing water from it.
"There's a lot of things I found out about being a saiyan once I was awakened. Even though I'm only a half-breed, my strength is inhumanely high. Not to mention, lots of other weird things..." She mused, placing one hand on her cheek, blushing as she watched the two fighters. Her emerald eyes following Raditz as he was encased in a ruby aura now, in a close-range battle of blows with the other saiyan.
Bulma looked to Launch and smirked, "You like him. In more ways than one..." She said, and giggled. Launch shook her head and snapped herself out of her fog.
"What?!That pervert? He's a creep! A-A caveman!" She blushed even fiercer, her hands covering her now red hot cheeks.
"Besides, he likes me much better when I have blue hair...I'm just not his type!" She said, squeezing her eyes shut, ignoring the feeling of Bulma suddenly shaking her by her shoulders.
"You know that's not true! I'm sure he likes you either way!" Bulma had seen the way Raditz showed her off proudly, that was a clear enough sign that he valued both versions.
Launch shrugged, "...I just know he looks at her alot differently than he looks it's not as if he can cheat on someone who I'm practically attached to, but... sometimes that's how it feels, like I'm just a third wheel." She said, somber, and began walking out of the water.
Bulma followed, trying to think of words to say that would comfort her. She would have liked to investigate further into Launch's biology, but she'd never had the opportunity.
"Launch, don't say that ...! How do you know that's how he feels? If he wants to be with her, he has to accept that you are a part of her!" She protested, having to run after Launch who, just walking was moving quicker than her at her very fastest.
Launch went inside, slamming the door behind her, and Bulma followed, huffing for breath. "Launch!" Bulma yelled, pulling the door open and taking after her, causing Raditz to turn his head and lose focus. Vegeta took advantage and socked him in the jaw. Raditz allowed himself to fall back, holding one hand out before himself haltingly as he scented the air.
"That girl, she's-" He furrowed his brows together, his hand weakening as he was distracted.
"Fight me, right now!" Vegeta growled, and blasted at Raditz with a blue ball of ki. Raditz shook his head and dodged, returning his attention to the fight, sending out a flurry of ruby ki blasts back in Vegeta's direction.
What am I doing? Am I that freaking stupid? Launch asked herself, as she ran upstairs to her bedroom and fell onto the bed, sobbing.
I'm such a idiot! Why did I get it in my head that if tried to be more like her, he would like me?! When I kissed him earlier, he didn't even kiss me back barely, if you count kissing on the head as passionate! Like I'm a little kid or somethin'!
She punched the bed as she buried her face in the pillow, squeezing it and screaming into it as her tail fuzzed up and lashed wildly around her back.
I just feel so weird! Like I'm going crazy! I must be nuts if I wanna jump his bones! Not only that, but cuddling?! Yuck!
There was a soft knock on the door, then she heard Bulma's scratchy voice calling her name in a worried tone. Launch sat up, rubbing the tears from her cheeks violently and huffed, "Come in."
The door creaked open and the pretty azure haired girl Launch knew as her one and only female friend came in and sat on the edge of the bed.
"Are you ok...?" She asked, tucking a long strand of hair behind her ear.
"I... don't know. Maybe I'm just feeling under the weather, you know? Chick stuff." Launch said, shrugging. Bulma nodded knowingly, with a sympathetic smile.
"Do you need anything? Something to eat, pain medication maybe?" She asked softly, and Launch shook her head, no.
"No thanks, I ate earlier... I don't feel so good... maybe it was those Mai Tais we had..." She said, covering her mouth. Launch got up quickly and ran to the bathroom, the door swinging shut behind her as she rushed to the toilet. Bulma gasped, rushing to stand by the door as Launch voided her stomach contents.
"Oh, Launch!" She said, feeling bad for her friend as she rested one hand on the door. She knew nausea sometimes was a symptom of PMS, which could be set off by any number of things, such as a strong smell, or a bad food combination.
"I'll get you something to drink, ok?" Bulma said, walking downstairs. She had her head lowered as she went towards the kitchen, then felt something solid stop her as Raditz held her back with one hand. Bulma looked up, gulping nervously.
"What are you doing?" He asked, suspiciously.
"Oh, um, R-Raditz! Launch is very sick..."
The tall man's eyes widened worriedly as he looked straight past her and towards the bedroom where he could hear her pained, heaving sounds. He moved past Bulma, feeling irritated when she grabbed his arm and tugged.
"Wait! Don't go in there, I'll take care of her... she would be embarrassed if you saw her that way!" Bulma bumbled to make an excuse, waving her hands. She was startled when Raditz curled his lip and growled at her, ripping his arm roughly out of her grip.
"Ow!" She hissed, holding her hand that had been injured earlier that day.
She then felt a shiver down her spine as she heard another more familiar growl and was suddenly behind Vegeta's back, held securely to him with his tail, one arm wrapped behind her back.
"Don't you fucking dare cause harm to my ward, or we will finish our fight once and for all, with your splintered bones sticking out of your bloody back!" Vegeta retorted back angrily, in a rasping growl.
Raditz snorted at him, "A heartless prick like you knows nothing about protecting his female! My mate is not well, now leave me to tend to her!" He growled back, and stormed up the stairs, slamming the door shut behind him. Vegeta stood stiffly a moment, until Bulma touched his back, gently caressing. She sensed his tension and tried to calm it.
"Let's give them a minute, Vegeta. You would be worried ifIwere sick, wouldn't you? If I'm your 'ward', as you say, then Raditz is doing kind of the same thing for Launch, isn't he?" She said softly, then gulped as he turned around briskly.
Vegeta narrowed his eyes at her, offended.
"There is a large difference between a mate and a ward, foolish woman! First of all, the clear lack of mating! Second, I would never act so idiotic because of some bitch in heat that I would risk my own life! He should be punished for speaking to me like that!"
Bulma crossed her arms and growled back at him, if she couldn't get through to him with words, maybe she could speak his stubborn monkey language. He paused a moment, then looked at her questioningly.
"Of course you wouldn't, because you don't know how to treat a lady right like Raditz does! That's what you do when you truly care for someone, you would look out for them no matter what! That's why she actually wants to be with him, he's a kind person!" She snarled right into his face, she was only an inch or two shorter, which made her the perfect height to glare right into his cold eyes.
Is she fucking daft? All I do is constantly run around saving her ass, but she's unconscious for most of it! ...Of course, Bulma wouldn't know just how enslaved she's made me!
Vegeta's face was so taut, Bulma couldn't discern what he was feeling beneath his constantly angered expression, but it surely had more to it than anger as he held her gaze and grit his teeth.
"Well, I'm not exactly what you'd consider a kind person like that weakling! You wouldn't survive a goddamn day without me! That's my kindness to you each and everyday, the prolonging of your life!" He snapped, and Bulma gasped, instantly translating his words to make the most out of his harsh words; looking past his uncouth phrasing as she had become accustomed to.
Is that his idea of a gift? I suppose it's pretty damn good, I would take being alive over stupid flowers anyday, not that he would ever be crazy enough to do that...
" ...Ok, Vegeta. I understand. Thank you, I wasn't doubting your skill to protect me. No matter how rudely you go about it, you're very capable..."
Bulma patted his chest apologetically, gulping for breath. Her air felt shoved out of her lungs as his tail clenched tighter around her waist, holding her so tightly their chests were pressed together after he spoke the conflicting words; his tail showing an unexpected emotion he didn't know he felt. Possessiveness.
Bulma looked down at the tail, then up to him and blinked, feeling her heart race as he was unflinching in his heated gaze, with an odd reddish flush below his eyelashes. She tore her eyes away and pushed on his chest, but couldn't move.
"Vegeta! Let go!" She cried out, frustrated and embarrassed; but he hesitated to answer, his hand going uncharacteristically to the back of his neck and rubbing there, uneasily.
"Well, if you would stay still; perhaps it will loosen its grip. I'm not doing this of my own volition!" He said, as Bulma looked back to him. He looked away quickly, the tips of his ears reddening.
"My tail sometimes moves on its own. Well- oftentimes, but it normally stops once I punish it. Unfortunately, I can't do that at the moment without harming you. It will not move until I'm absolutely certain that Raditz does not intend to harm you. So, just... getusedto it."
"You mean...WE'RE STUCK LIKE THIS!?"
"It would seem that way." He responded coldly, just as freaking thrilled as she was.
Vegeta attempted to walk with her attached to him, but she stumbled and nearly fell. He exhaled sharply and paused, hefting her back up.
"Where are you going?" Bulma said, squealing when he grabbed her by the thighs and wrapped them around his waist in a provocative position.
"V-Vegeta!" Bulma tried to hold herself away, but as he walked she shifted back uncomfortably close to him.
"Hold on tight, damn it! I'm hungry, if we have to stay like this awhile, we may as well make ourselves comfortable, seeing as Raditz has chosen to mark his scent throughout this entire house." He said, opening the fridge and nearly hitting her head off the door.
"What?! His scent!? What are you, skunks?!"
"Don't compare me to that idiotic meathead, Nappa! My scent is more robust, less sour than a rodent like Raditz or Nappa!" He spat back, and earned a look from Bulma like he was insane.
"Well, spray yours out, then we can go home!" She said, shaking him as he sniffed a container of leftovers.
Vegeta raised one brow at her and smirked.
"I can't quite do that in this position, now can I? Unless you like being covered in urine." Vegeta said, then chuckled darkly before scooping a handful of cold noodles out and shoving them in his mouth.
"Eww! You're disgusting!" Bulma gagged, slapping at him for his nasty comment.
"At least put that in the microwave and use a fork! I'm hungry too you know, I bet Raditz would have shared his food with me!" She whined, pouting.
Vegeta gulped his food down and his eyes widened, "Don't tell me you're attracted to that pathetic low-level?!" He said with disbelief, nearly dropping her in his shocked reaction.
Bulma giggled at his telling reaction, and pressed her chest closer to his teasingly. If they were going to be stuck like this, she might as well have some fun at his expense.
"Hmm...maybe... He certainly is tall, isn't he?" She purred, getting a good rise out of him.
"Tall doesn't mean strong, I guess you'd enjoy being dead? You know, you're quite height-challenged yourself!"
Vegeta snapped, then slammed the fridge door shut and growled deep in his chest at her, then set the container of lo mein down and darted his eyes around the kitchen. "Where's the blasted microwave?" He said, and Bulma snickered, pointing. Vegeta brought them to the microwave, then waited for further instruction.
"Here, let me." Bulma said, and he placed her bottom on the counter, flushing as he attempted to pull back as far as possible so she could maneuver the container into the microwave. "There... Now, set it for two minutes and thirty seconds.. that should do it." She said, quickly pressing the buttons. Vegeta sighed with annoyance, watching the food go around and around in circles. Bulma leaned her hands on the counter and whistled, swinging her legs back and forth.
"Stop that!" He snapped, and Bulma snickered, wrapping her legs around him, then resting her head on his chest.
"I'm tired! Do you think we'll have to sleep like this? It's getting really late..." She pouted, Bulma wasn't sure why, but she was purposely pushing his buttons to see how far she could go before he flipped out.
"We are most definitely not sleeping together, not like this!" He growled, shoving her off.
"Why...? Are you afraid you'll poke me with your morning wood?" Bulma said suggestively, flinching back a little as she finished her sentence.
Vegeta furrowed his brows, puzzled.
" 'Morning wood...?' What's wood got anything to do with it?" He said, snorting.
He was watching the seconds count down stubbornly as Bulma crafted an incredibly evil idea.
"You know... when things getharddown there? Where we're touching right now?" She purred seductively, and pressed her hips against him, wiggling herself against the rough textured front of his swim shorts and pretending to moan for emphasis. Vegeta's eyes widened and he flinched back, pulling on his own tail and grunting in pain as he thrashed around violently to try and free himself.
"Jeez louise, calm down! I was just teasing!" Bulma said, looking at him funny. Her cheeks flushed brightly, she meant to only tease him, but she had to admit it sort of... felt good. She didn't expect his exaggerated reaction though, although she supposed she preferred it to what she intended to cause...Vegeta finally calmed when she stopped moving, and rested his hands on the counter, panting.
"Do not do that ever again, if you wish to retain your purity as royalty, it wouldn't be wise to tempt me at this moment when I have the advantage." He lifted his head and sneered at her cockily as he moved closer. Bulma gasped as she suddenly felt a firmness pressed against her bikini bottoms. She whimpered sharply in reaction and he withdrew back regretfully, seething in annoyance.
That's all it takes to frighten her, a teasing little jab? This woman obviously isn't fit to mate, even though she offered! Pathetic...
"You really are a foolish female. It's almost as if youwantto be raped, only to have your womb stripped of my offspring? Don't you see how easily I could have done it? Why do youthinkmy tail has us forced into this ridiculous position? My base instinct is to claim you before Raditz does any more harm, and I will not do sogently." He growled, biting back his own frightened reservations on the matter. He had to end any silly notions she had that such a thing was desirable. Bulma flinched back, her eyes watering.
"Y-You... would do that...?" She whimpered, as the microwave beeped and he opened the door to retrieve his food, completely ignoring the sobbing woman attached to him. Bulma cried harder as he stuffed noodles in his mouth, rolling his eyes at her pitiful sobs. At least the foul smelling tears helped quell the problem she caused.
"Just consider yourself lucky I have enough willpower to resist those primal urges. Some with less refined blood wouldn't." Vegeta said truthfully, sliding his eyes on her.
"I-I don't ever want to talk to you again, you're a h-horrible person! You don't care about me at all!" She blubbered, sobbing uncontrollably. Vegeta paused, agitated, he'd only made their doomed situation even worse now with his comments.
You better not hurt Bulma, or else I'll blast your goddamn rocks off! A husky voice suddenly shouted in his mind, making him freeze.
Who the hell are you?! Raditz's bitch?! He growled back telepathically.
I'm a bitch alright, wanna see just who the hell I am?! I'll get up out of this fucking bed right now and tear ya a new one!
Vegeta felt their twin spikes of ki from across the house and grumbled, gathering her up in his arms to waddle awkwardly over to the couch with his lo mein, noticing a slight let up in her incessant sobbing. He sat them on the couch and sighed, holding the container between them as a barrier. Bulma sniffled, her stomach growling.
"Woman. It's time to eat, now." He said, and stabbed the fork in the food, wrapping the noodles around it then raising it to her mouth. Bulma opened her teary eyes, stunned that he would offer to feed her.
This is going too far, now I'm feeding her?He was now aware after his spar today with Raditz, that thisalsowas a stage in Saiyan courtship; to feed the female your own food as a show of peace.
She asked for it, and she's not getting it from Raditz on my watch, that's for sure.
"Open your mouth." He demanded, and she obeyed, shyly opening her mouth as she hiccuped between gasps of breath.
"Breathe properly or you'll choke," He growled, then put the food in her mouth.
Once she finally began chewing, her mouth stuffed with food, the sobbing had stopped and he could finally think clearly.
"Princess Bulma... I do not mean to violate you, that would go against my code of honor." He said sternly, watching her eyes widen as he addressed her by her actual name, and Princess at that!
"I do not intend on having offspring, ever. Even with a...comely female as yourself. My race is a dead race, and it will stay that way." He said with apathy, then swirled the noodles around and popped them in her mouth once again. Bulma's heart raced, as she struggled to chew, her throat bobbing up and down with her restrained sobs.
"I had to stop you somehow before I lost my control. I did not do so properly, for that I should apologize. It was inappropriate for me as your guardian." Vegeta said, so quietly that it was a grating whisper. His eyes lowered to her exposed belly, as he thought back to the eviscerated female victims; their reproductive organs ripped from their bodies after Raditz had finished with them, dumping them carelessly wherever he had violently used them. Vegeta quivered, and shut his eyes at the terrible thought. He tormented himself with a terrifying image of Bulma, her brilliant azure eyes staring blankly; speckled with blood, her legs splayed open, hanging off her hip bones like raw slabs of meat...
Bulma at last swallowed her food, and looked down to Vegeta, feeling conflicted. What he said was unacceptable, but, hehadapologized, and he seemed truly sorry, in fact; he had a haunted expression and was visibly quivering.
"Vegeta, I forgive you. I'm sorry, I won't do it again. It was stupid, I feel like a such a dumbass whore..." She said, with a small scoff. She allowed her tears to trickle down as he looked up at her, with a pained expression.
"You are not an idiot, Woman. Nor are you a whore. You are one of the most intelligent females I have ever known. You are...worth more than your body alone. I would be cruel to treat you as such, like Raditz... you see... he..." Vegeta gulped, quickly looking away. He'd almost divulged too much! He shook his head, and shuddered.
Why did I almost tell her that? It would surely frighten the wits out of her if she knew what the 'kind' man in the other room was more than capable of at one time!
He was startled as he felt her hand caress his cheek, Bulma looked down at him curiously; her eyes dried of tears.
"What could Raditz possibly do that scared you, Vegeta? I didn't think you were scared of anything..." She whispered, and he closed his eyes, enjoying the comfort in her stroking hand. His tail subconsciously began to stroke her lower back soothingly, as he took a shaky breath and debated on how to answer her question.
"Fear is a natural response. All men should listen to their fear, and face it. Are you still frightened of me...?" He asked, staring down and swirling the noodles around the fork. Bulma's hand covered his, and he pulled back as she raised the fork, giggling softly.
"Open up!" She said, and he did so, to his shame, his eyebrows raised with his sheer surprise that she returned the favor. She simply wanted him to listen while she spoke, and he knew that, so he sat and patiently chewed.
"Vegeta, If I were afraid of you, do you think I would allow you to hold me so intimately like this? Even without the tail!Feeding me, as if we're infatuated teenagers on their first date?" She giggled, watching his bashful reaction. Bulma wrapped more noodles around the fork, and he took it, gulping.
"You're stronger than even Goku, that I've figured out. And he was very strong, it seems most saiyans are." She said as if she were highly impressed, popping even more food in his mouth. Vegeta's brows furrowed, his cheeks bulging with food.
"But, as strong as you are, you've never actually hurt me! I couldn't tell you how many times Goku accidentally stepped on my toe and broke it! One time, he fractured my arm trying to carry me while running, and so many other times he left me covered in bruises..." She said lightheartedly, then heard a muffled growl of protest through his mouthful of food and shook her head, flapping one hand dismissively.
He broke her toes!?
"Not on purpose! Goku was well, how do I put it...? Mentally handicapped? -Just slightly. But, you've had multiple opportunities to hurt me, and you haven't!" She said, and smiled down at him as he swallowed.
"Of course I haven't! I can control my strength, unlike some of the fools in that family!"
Vegeta's tail tightened, making Bulma cough. He loosened it with a good amount of straining, it was still far too stiff at the moment to voluntarily move it.
"Well, from what I can gather, Raditz did some nasty things to women, is that what you're afraid to tell me...?" She said, resting one hand on his neck. Vegeta nodded, still not meeting her eyes.
"Yes... things that would surely make you scream and cry far worse than I can...you will never befall that fate, not on my watch." He said, and coiled his tail around her back, eyes hardening.
"Thank you, Vegeta..." Bulma said, setting the empty container aside and relaxing on his chest, which was very warm, although stiff. "Can't you try to relax? I'm so tired..." She whispered, and Vegeta slowly relaxed his tension so that her head could rest comfortably, leaning back and closing his eyes. Bulma breathed in deeply, enjoying the masculine scent of him that wasn't ripened or sour at all, but was more woodsy, almost smoky like sandalwood, the heavy undertone of rich caramel practically making her mouth water. How was it she had never smelled it before? He was practically oozing the smell like an expensive cologne.
"Mmm, you smell really good..." She mumbled sleepily, then curled her hands around his back and fell into a deep sleep, feeling content after having her hunger sated, with a warm body to snuggle against. Vegeta's breath halted after hearing her say such a thing, but he kept his body's reaction as calm as possible. Her admission of approval of his scent was permission to court, for a Saiyan. He shook his head, She couldn't possibly know that. She's only a human.
Thankfully, Raditz's scent overpowered Bulma's, and if it were not for that, he knew he wouldn't have been able to control himself again.
Vegeta opened his eyes in the darkness, stroking one hand down her back and petting her long, beautiful hair.
He admired the way it seemed light lavender once again in the bluish hue of night, so soft and fragile unlike his own stiff, coarse hair. He pulled a thick section of hair to his face and rubbed it on his cheek, bathing himself in her sweet scent.
"Silly woman... It's your scent that is lovely..." He whispered, not knowing why he smiled so gladly as he accepted her empty offer, but he didn't think much of it, she was definitely asleep. Vegeta's tail finally let up, but he refused to let go of her, fearing she would wake up. Instead, he wrapped his arms around her and moved them both to lie down, holding her closer as he drifted off to sleep, lulled by her scent. Bulma mewled softly from the movement, feeling the tightness of his tail was gone, she cracked one eye open. Simply watching his peaceful expression, a small smile softening his features and making him look more youthful, in fact, incredibly... handsome.
Vegeta would never say that, would he? I must be dreaming...! She thought, fleetingly, then smiled herself as she closed her eyes, dreaming of a fairytale fantasy, full of wonder, romance, and handsome alien princes...
End Of Chapter 22: Chosen Dilemma Chapter Insert
The Next Morning...
"Mmm, so comfy..." Bulma sighed, nuzzling her cheek into Vegeta's chest. She felt much too warm and cozy to wake him up, and his sweet, sleeping face was priceless, with the way his features were slack, his long rumbling breaths moving her head as he breathed deeply, for once looking so peaceful. Bulma gazed up at him, and for a moment longer, she enjoyed the rare treasure; she had never seen him like this, and she was savoring the moment very much.
But... I need coffee... She bit her bottom lip, weighing her options. She started to carefully move to get up, then gasped as his arms tightened and yanked her back down to him with a muffled grunt. Bulma made a small startled yelp, and pushed against his arms and tail wrapping around his still sleepy form.
"Vegeta! I can't breathe!" She panted for her breath, then was quickly torn away from the warm embrace as Vegeta wrenched himself away, quickly standing, and shaking out his hair as if he were soiled somehow.
"What was that all about?" Bulma pouted; sitting up. Vegeta turned his eye on her from his peripheral, and sneered, crossing his arms.
"I demand nutrient serum, woman." He snapped, then stormed off towards the bathroom, and slammed the door.
"Excuse me?! You need to learn some manners, ass!" Bulma screamed as she stood up, growling. She then stormed off as well, looking around the kitchen for coffee for her and the snobbish prince. She was surprised when Raditz shuffled out, his black hair unruly, with dark circles under his eyes as he observed her making the coffee. She heard his soft sniff, then chuckled.
"Let me guess, you want 'Nutrient Serum'?" She said, adding an extra scoop of coffee. Raditz scratched his abdomen and rose his dark eyebrows.
"We have that...?" He said with surprise.
"Not enough for you." Vegeta said lowly, and Bulma gave him a roll of her eyes as she turned on the coffee maker.
"Seriously...? You do realize, that you don't own Master Roshi's coffee?"
Vegeta looked away from the both of them, going to sit at the table. Raditz shrugged off the insult and opened the refrigerator, taking out multiple types of fruit and popping a peeled banana half into his mouth. Bulma leaned up against the counter with a puzzled look, as Raditz made himself look even more convincing as Tarzan as he munched on his banana.
"How is Launch feeling...?" She asks carefully, as he begins searching the drawers for some type of knife. Raditz pauses, polishing an apple on his black t-shirt.
"She's very hungry. But I'm not sure she'll keep it down."
"Ugh.." Launch grumbles, stumbling out to the kitchen, her blonde hair frizzy, wearing a grey tank top and boxer-like shorts as she shuffles out. Raditz sees her and smiles, chopping the fruit quickly as Launch plops into the chair across from Vegeta. Bulma pours him and herself a cup of coffee, then sits beside him, sipping curiously as she observes the other couple.
Raditz sets a plate before Launch and kisses her on her brow, to which she responds by quickly wiping her forehead, shortly before looking down and stuffing the cubes of fruit into her mouth quickly. Raditz pours himself a cup of coffee and stands behind her, stroking her shoulder as he sips his coffee. She blushes and shrugs him off; her cheeks pinkening furiously.
First, she couldn't get enough of his coddling her. Now, feeling queasy and grouchy, she had enough of the pawing monkey man at her beck and call. Launch paused, gulping. Then she squeezed her eyes shut and whimpered as her stomach growled again. Raditz leaned down and sniffed her curiously, setting his coffee on the table beside her. Launch accidentally sniffed the bitterness of the coffee, and her face paled, then one hand flew over her mouth and she made a mad dash for the bathroom, with Raditz flying right behind her. Vegeta looked up from his coffee and raised one brow.
"Hn. The fool. Doting on her like that."
Bulma gasped, looking at Vegeta in shock.
"What do you mean!? She's sick! Of course he would take care of her!" She couldn't believe he would say such a thing! After all, he'd fed her their dinner himself last night!
Vegeta snickered, grinning spitefully as he sipped once again.
"Oh, right. He would. Pitiful." He said, and Bulma glared at him.
"What are you saying, Vegeta...?" She said sternly, and gulped as he licked his lips and smirked at her.
"This is much too fun for me to spoil... Just watch the show, little woman."
Bulma shook her head and disregarded him, standing up quickly.
"You're a jerk! Just goes to show how much you care!" She yelled, only receiving his cruel laughter. Her eyes widened as she observed Vegeta laughing callously like never before; a shiver went down her spine as he did, and she turned away from him briskly.
"Launch!" She called, and ran up the stairs to stand beside Raditz by the bathroom door. The tall man turned and frowned at her, his dark eyes watery as they could both hear her retching inside.
"Oh... Raditz." Bulma said, pitifully as he looked back and placed one hand on the door, closing his eyes as he turned away.
"My mate is sick. I made her sick!" He whispered, his voice shaking, and Bulma gasped.
"You...? You mean!?" Her voice rose. Bulma shook the door handle, but it was locked.
"Launch! Let me in!" She begged, but they both flinched as they heard a low growl, then a thud as she threw something at the door.
"No! I'm coming in!" Bulma looked to Raditz; her blue eyes hardened. He breathed an exhale and reached over, turning the knob easily until it broke and swung inward. He backed away, with a guilty, shameful expression as Bulma walked in the door. Bulma closed it behind her, then walked over to where Launch was hanging her head over the sink, crying.
Bulma frowned, then opened the medicine cabinet, one finger on her lip. She didn't see what she was looking for, so she closed the door.
Bulma placed one hand on Launch's and gave her a serious look.
"Launch...Can we talk?" She said softly, seeing her friend look into the mirror wearily with her emerald eyes.
She squeezed her eyes shut, then whispered.
"I'm scared, I don't want to hurt him..." Launch's shoulders quivered as she began to cry, and Bulma looked on, feeling puzzled. She then remembered what Launch told her yesterday; with a dreadful realization dawning on her.
"You have to tell him." Bulma said softly.
"Tell me what?" Raditz growled, his figure filling the door as he walked in, looming over the both of them. His nostrils flared and he panted sharply, darting his eyes over Launch, grimacing.
"That smell, I knew I recognized that foul odor." He growled. Launch turned quickly, wrapping her arms protectively around herself.
"You idiot! I can't believe you would be that stupid! Tien is the father!" She shouted, and Bulma looked on in shocked confusion, back and forth.
"I was going to kill him. He should be gone, and the curse along with it. But you, you just wouldn't listen to me. Foolish girl." He spat, approaching on her. Launch backed away, as he advanced, and Bulma scrambled out of the bathroom, looking frantically around for Vegeta. She found him leaning up against the door frame, smirking.
"Is his sense of smell working now?" He sneered, a laughing tone in his voice.
Bulma glared at him, shaking her head reproachfully.
"Raditz! You!" They heard Launch yell out, then sneeze. He walked out soon after, holding her in his arms. Bulma gasped, seeing Launch now with blue hair, looking around innocently. Raditz walked past them quickly and laid her on the bed, his back to them as he felt her stomach with one palm.
"What's going on? Raditz?" She whimpered, placing her own hand over his, then cringing. "Mm...my stomach..." She moaned.
"Hn." Vegeta mused, and quickly turned away, as if he'd totally forgotten what had happened. Bulma looked on, feeling baffled.
"Is she ok?"
"Yes..." Raditz sighed and sunk to his knees, resting his head on Launch's exposed stomach. The violet eyed girl stroked his cheek worriedly.
"What's wrong, honey?"
He turned his face away from Bulma and his shoulders shook. Bulma backed away and closed the door behind her with a soft click.
Raditz squeezed his eyes shut, allowing his hot tears to fall on Launch's stomach as he restrained a sob.
"You have your heat, little Launch... You're not hurt... No... It's not your time to bear my child yet." He whispered, and held her closer. She made a soft groan and sat up, wrapping her arms around his neck.
"...Is that what you would have liked?"
Raditz looked up to her with an intensity in his eyes and kissed her firmly, pulling her down to him as they shared a passionate kiss. Raditz at last pulled away, his jaw quivering. He grit his chattering teeth and shook his head, standing.
"Where're you going..?" She said, her hands smoothing down him as he stood. Raditz lowered his head and smiled at her, sadly.
"I mustn't be with you right now, little Launch. You're in pain... I have acted irrationally." He said softly, then turned away and gave her some privacy.
I don't deserve it. The man who died claimed her first...My Launch...No matter what you look like, you are one and the same woman to me... I wish you could see that. Raditz thought, looking back once pensively, before closing the door.
Launch sat on the edge of the bed and wiped one eye with the back of her hand.
"Oh Tien... I'm so sorry." She said in a small voice, curling her hand to her chest and sobbing as she felt the other's emotions welling up inside her; feeling the pain of his death once again, as the woman mourning in her subconscious took to the safety of the dream realm to hide away her pain.