Alternative Dragonball universe. Medieval retelling.
Disclaimer: DBZ characters property of Akira Toriyama.
This story is set in a medieval style of world. Bra is not Bulma and Vegeta's daughter. Kakarott is the Son Goku of this alternative universe. All else shall be revealed.
Many thanks to Anja for helping me come up with the original concepts for this story.
Chapter One: What is the magic girl looking for? Kakarott gets lost.
Warning: Mild language
There was just no getting around it. Kakarott was lost. Very lost. He scratched his head as he sat on a damp rock. It made absolutely no sense to him how he could be lost, and yet he was. He was in a jungle. That meant he was probably in or near the Animal Kingdom. So, if he walked for long enough in one direction, he should get out of it, and hopefully back to Saiyajin territory. But he'd been walking all day (he'd even tried flying) and for some reason he had yet to get out of the jungle. He'd flown as high as he could, and seen the desert off in one direction, and a large blue area on the other side, and flown towards the desert... but then he'd gotten hungry, and landed, and eaten, and fallen asleep, and now it was dark.
Sighing, because he'd probably gotten everyone annoyed with him, he started sensing for Ki large enough to be intelligent life. He found one rather quickly, and jumped off the rock, secured his shoulder bag, then set off at a brisk pace towards the Ki.
Kakarott could smell something before he could see whoever it was. Something that smelt delicious. Creeping silently up behind some ferns, he found himself staring at a large flat square of... material? floating in the middle of the jungle, a little bit off the ground. Seated on it was a girl, with short black hair pulled back in a ponytail. She was eating something, and playing around with the flat, round, metal amulet she was wearing. She was also human, which meant he'd probably scare her. Still, that food smelt great, and he really needed directions.
"Hello?" Kakarott called out, not stepping out yet.
The girl stiffened and quickly stuck her amulet down the front of her tunic. She straightened up and looked around. "Um, hello?" She called back.
Kakarott walked out into the clearing, quickly making his tail bunch up flat on his back so it wouldn't show just yet. "Hello," he said again, "um, do you know where we are?"
She blinked. "The Animal Kingdom," She replied firmly.
"I know that, but I'm lost, and I need to find my way out," Kakarott said, deciding to cut right to the point.
"Oh, well, my name is Bra. Actually, I'm just passing through here myself, so, if you want, I'll show you the way out tomorrow," Bra said, eyeing him warily.
"Um, okay," Kakarott decided. He stood there, wondering what to do next. He frowned slightly, wishing he knew a bit more about how-to-deal-with-humans-when-you-weren't-trying-to-fight-them.
"Well, are you going to tell me your name?" Bra demanded after a moment of silence.
"Oh yeah, um, I'm Kakarott..," Kakarott began, walking forward out of the shadows.
"EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! You're a Saiyajin!" Bra scrambled backwards in a rush, falling off the edge of her material in an undignified heap.
"Uh, yeah," Kakarott said, nervously.
After another moment, when it was clear he wasn't going to attack, Bra stood up, and began straightening her clothes. She looked angry, and Kakarott started to wonder about disappearing back into the jungle and finding his own way out.
"Well!" She yelled suddenly, then continued in a more normal voice. "Ahem, Karott, I, uh, don't suppose you want something to eat?"
"Eat? Yes!" Kakarott smiled and walked forward to investigate the rather thin material. Bra jumped back onto it and seated herself, before fixing him with a frown.
"That's my tent," she said sharply, "well, the bottom of it, anyway. It's perfectly solid, I don't want the bottom wet so I levitated it. You may sit on it instead of standing there poking it."
He nodded and stepped up onto it, finding that it was indeed solid, it didn't waver or dip or do anything to indicate that it was not planted firmly on flat ground. Bra motioned to her dinner, which was sitting in a large metal bowl.
"Help yourself, I guess."
Kakarott immediately did so, all apprehension forgotten in light of a good feed. Bra watched him for a while, then sighed.
"Kakarott," Kakarott muttered helpfully around a mouthful of food.
"Kakarott," she corrected smoothly, "I'm going to sleep. I sleep over there, on that half of the tent. You may sleep on this half if you wish. Do not touch any of my stuff." She stood up and strode over to the area designated as 'that half' and fiddled with one of many small pouches at her belt before pulling out a large blanket. A blanket way too big to fit into such a small pouch. Kakarott would have asked about it, but there was still some dinner left, and by the time he was finished, Bra was asleep. So he curled up and went to sleep as well.
Kakarott was the first to wake up the next morning. He yawned and stretched, and blinked for a moment before remembering where he was. He looked over to see Bra, still asleep, sprawled all over the tent, her blanket wrapped half around her and half falling off the edge. Curious, he sat and watched her sleep. Suddenly a shrill sound started. Alarmed, Kakarott was up in an instant, looking around for the source of the noise.
"Mmmeeehhhh," Bra mumbled and sat up sleepily. She snapped her fingers and the noise stopped as suddenly as it had started. She rubbed her eyes and looked over at him. And screamed, and somehow managed to move backwards and fall off the edge of her tent.
"Shimatta!" She swore, scrambling up, angrily untangling herself from the blanket.
"Um, girl?" Kakarott asked warily.
"What?!" She snapped. "My name is Bra. Bra! I told you that last night!"
"Are you a sorcerer?"
"Yes. I am a sorceress. I'm the best sorceress you'll ever meet, so don't attack me and don't think any funny thoughts," Bra said firmly, folding up her blanket as she stepped back up onto the tent.
"Wow, I've never met a girl sorcerer before," Kakarott said, cocking his head to the side.
"Really?" Bra asked, all trace of anger gone. "That's odd. Where I come from there's plenty of girls who know a little magic. Oh, not all of them could really call themselves 'sorceresses', but there's a few who could."
"Where do you come from?"
"Capsule Kingdom, of course. The best place for magic."
"Oh. I come from the Saiyajin Empire."
"Well, duh," Bra said snidely, rolling her eyes. "You're a Saiyajin, where else would you come from?"
"Um... Do you know where the Saiyajin Empire is from here?" Kakarott asked, remembering the reason he was talking to her.
"Of course I do!" Bra announced.
"Can you take me there?" Kakarott asked earnestly.
Bra gave him a strange look. "You know, I've never met a Saiyajin so... never mind. Listen, I'll take you to the border later. Right now, I've got to find something." Bra finished, then took out the amulet Kakarott had seen her playing with before. She held it and suddenly several intense yellow glows dotted the surface.
"Wow! I'm so close!" Bra shrieked happily. With a smile she bounded down off the tent and started skipping off into the woods.
"Hey, wait up!" Kakarott called, grabbing his bag and darting after her. He slammed into her back as she stopped and sent them both tumbling.
"Hey, watch it!" Bra yelled, scrambling up.
"Uh, sorry," Kakarott said sheepishly.
Bra looked at him in disbelief, then shook her head.
"Anyway..," She muttered to herself. She frowned as she looked at her medallion. She looked up and looked around.
"What are you looking for?" Kakarott asked curiously.
"Um, an orange ball, about this big," Bra made a rough circle shape with her hands.
"Oh, this?" Kakarott opened his bag and fished around for a second before pulling it out. An orange ball, about the right size, with four red stars somehow visible in the middle.
"THAT'S IT!" She shrieked, and Kakarott winced, wondering how she could possibly make such a loud noise. Bra grabbed the ball out of his hand and hugged it, dancing around in apparent joy. "The four star ball! That makes three! Yes! Mwahahahahahahahaha!"
Bra spun around and stopped, facing Kakarott. "Thank you so much! I was wondering how it was moving last night, I thought something might have eaten it."
"Well, it wouldn't break into small enough pieces," Kakarott said seriously.
"Hey!" Bra yelled crossly. "You idiot! You can't eat this! It's... very special. Where'd you get it, anyway?"
"I found it in some plants last night, while I was hunting," Kakarott said.
"Oh. Well, let's see where the next one is, then I can figure out what border to drop you off at. You do look a little young to be out running around, even if you are a Saiyajin." Bra studied her amulet, the yellow dots quickly appearing again.
"Can I see that?" Kakarott asked.
"Sure," Bra murmured absently, tilting it so Kakarott could get a good look at it. He frowned at the yellow dots, counting them silently. There were five of them, one at the centre and four more scattered around.
"You're looking for five orange balls? Are you trying to do some big spell?"
"Uh, you could say that," Bra smiled at him, then laughed softly. "Anyway," she became serious, "the closest one to here is up on that tiny island. Unfortunately, that's the wrong direction for you. So, I'll tell you what. You can come with me and help me find it, because I'll have to come back to the mainland afterwards to get the others, or I can just point you in the right direction and let you go!"
"Uh..," Kakarott paused. A real Saiyajin warrior would not have gotten lost in the first place, let along hopelessly lost when even by his own logic he shouldn't be lost. "I'll go with you."
"You will?" Bra blinked, surprised. "Come on, the Saiyajin Empire is just off that way!" She pointed to her left. "You just keep walking that way, and you can't miss it."
Kakarott gave her a pitiful look. "I tried flying to it yesterday, and I'm still lost."
Bra took a deep breath, then bent forward to make eye-contact. "That's a little extreme, huh? How old are you, Kakarott?"
"I'm twelve. I think."
"Well, a while ago Radditz said I'd be twelve soon, and Bardock said that was good, because I could move out of his quarters, and I did a week ago." Kakarott told her.
"Riiiiight," Bra said, straightening. "Say, these guys, Radditz and Bardock or whatever, they're not going to come looking for you, are they?"
"I don't think so," Kakarott sighed.
"Well, you can come with me. That's okay," Bra said quickly. She leant forward again. "Kakarott, can you keep a secret?"
"Why?" Kakarott wondered, a tiny bit suspicious.
Bra grinned. "Because if you're coming with me, I might as well tell you what I'm really looking for, but you have to promise me you won't tell anyone else!"
Kakarott was intrigued. "Okay. I promise. I promise on my honour."
"Honour, huh? That'll do," Bra shrugged. Then she straightened and looked at him with the superiority of one who knows more than the one they're looking at. "I... am looking for the legendary Dragonballs."
Kakarott blinked. "The what?"
"The legendary Dragonballs," Bra said in a stage whisper.
"What are those?"
"Aaaaaaaarrrrrrrrhhhhhhhh!" Bra threw back her head and shrieked to the jungle. Then she bounced forward so fast Kakarott went into a defensive crouch. She fell to her knees, grabbing the front of his armour. "You can't not know!" She cried, not noticing Kakarott's tenseness.
Bra put an arm over her forehead, and lent back. "It's impossible!" She let go with the other hand and curled up on the ground, muttering something to herself.
"Um, you mean that story about the magic Dragonballs that make you immortal if you find them all?"
"Huh?" Bra looked up. Then she snarled and jumped to her feet, flicked her ponytail over her shoulder and crossed her arms. Kakarott couldn't help leaning back a bit.
"Whoever told you that was an idiot."
"The legendary Dragonballs are seven mystical balls that, when brought together, can summon the dragon Shenlong. Of course, you have to say the right phrase. Once summoned, the dragon Shenlong can grant one wish. Anything you want!" Bra smiled smugly for an instant, then sneered. "I suppose that could be used to wish for immortality."
"Oh, okay," Kakarott agreed. "What were you going to wish for?"
Bra drew herself up. "A husband."
"Oh," Kakarott scratched his head. They stared at each other for a few moments.
"I suppose you don't know what a husband is," Bra mused.
"Nope," Kakarott shrugged.
"Let's get going. I don't like this jungle, and I'd like to get my next Dragonball."
"Yumcha, I hate this jungle."
"Sorry, Kashumi, but we've been getting such good pickings. After all, this is the only decent road through this place."
"One good picking, and I still don't like it."
Yumcha shifted in the tree, trying to get a bit more comfortable. The fungus on the already shaky branch made his position very precarious.
"Tell you what, sis, if we don't get a mark today, we'll leave."
"All right!" Blond Kashumi threw him an evil grin from her branch. Suddenly her face dropped and she scowled. "Kuso, I can hear someone coming."
"And after adding the red mountain silver, you boil some water and dump everything in that. There's some chanting and other stuff that's completely over your head, and it takes forever, at least two days anyway, but after that: Presto! One Dragon Amulet!"
Kakarott nodded, not understanding a word of it.
"I came up with the spell all by myself, too," Bra smirked. "Nobody else has anything like this, and nobody else can make one. Heh heh he-aaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh!"
Kakarott sprang backwards, barely avoiding being landed on by a man with longish dark hair. The man immediately sprang around, in a fighting stance. Kakarott shifted his to match, his tail curling around his waist.
Behind the man, Bra was pulled to her feet by a rough looking blond woman. "What's this?" The blond asked angrily. "Some brat of a girl and a miniature Saiyajin? Okay, girlie, let's get this over with. Tell me you have something of value, and you haven't just been wasting my time."
"Value?" Bra's voice wavered. "I'm just a poor girl, I'm trying to find my Grandmother's village to visit her! I don't have anything valuable on me!"
"Bah," The other woman answered. "You've gotta have something. Coins?"
"Nope," Bra shook her head.
"You have nothing but you're traveling with a Saiyajin?" The man asked over his shoulder, but his eyes never left Kakarott's. The Saiyajin boy found himself snarling slightly.
"Who are you?" Kakarott demanded.
"Heh. I'm Yumcha," The man said, tossing his head slightly, as if waiting for recognition.
"The bandit?" Bra piped up. "Hey, I thought you were terrorizing the countryside near Capsule Kingdom! What are you doing all the way here?"
"Hey hey hey! Yumcha, you're a stuck-up idiot. Stay on the subject!" The blond shook Bra. "And come on, out with the money, I don't have all day! Yumcha, just bash the little twerp and come give me a hand!"
Yumcha grinned at Kakarott. "You heard the lady, let's see what you got!" With a cry Yumcha hurtled forward, swinging a fist at Kakarott's head. Kakarott dodged nimbly to the side, and retaliated with a swift kick at Yumcha's jaw. The human, however, had anticipated a counter attack and was already on the move. A leg smashed into Kakarott's ankles, sweeping him to the ground.
Kakarott hit hard, and rolled quickly to the side, climbing to his feet in a smooth movement. He blocked Yumcha's next two punches, before sending back a few of his own, which were blocked in turn. Kakarott and Yumcha broke apart, eyeing each other.
Kakarott narrowed his eyes, and darted forward, trying to slam his elbow into Yumcha's stomach, but the human dodged with remarkable speed and brought a fist crashing down on Kakarott's back, forcing him to the ground. Before the Saiyajin could recover, the bandit grabbed one of his ankles, and hoisted him off the ground. Kakarott's eyes widened as Yumcha used his momentum to hurtle the tailed boy into a nearby mess of ferns, tree roots and vines. Kakarott smashed through it and hit the ground with a thud.
"Not bad, bro," Kashumi commented with a sneer. "Ouph." The air left her lungs in a rush as Bra suddenly slammed her elbow backwards. The black-haired girl twisted, forcing Kashumi to release one of her holds, and slapped the blond woman across the face before pulling free completely.
"Why you..!" Kashumi straightened, her eyes murderous. "You little bitch!"
"I'm a bitch?! You're sure one to talk!" Bra snapped back. She pulled one of the small pouches on her belt free, and reached in, pulling out what looked like just another sack.
"Huh? Magic?" Kashumi paused for a moment, trying to figure out how Bra pulled a full sack from an empty one the same size.
"Blind Dust!" Bra cried, tugging open the full pouch.
"What?" Yumcha yelped as the air suddenly become full of swirling black clouds.
"Ah-choo! Ah-choo!" Kashumi's sneezing filled the air.
"Ack! Lemme go!" Bra's voice cried. There was a thump, then a thud, then some more sneezing.
"Kashumi?" Yumcha's voice called.
Kakarott scuttled up, looking around as the smoke cleared. Yumcha was waving his hands to disperse it faster, while a dark-blue haired woman leaned over Bra, who was lying on the ground.
"Yumcha! Oh, Yumcha, I think she's hurt!" The blue-haired lady cried in a worried voice. Kakarott quickly moved closer, taking a better look. Yumcha sighed and came over, squatting down as the blue-haired girl took Bra's pulse.
"Oh dear, oh dear," She murmured. "Wake up, please!" She shook Bra gently.
"Don't worry, Ranchi, I'm sure she's fine," Yumcha said, settling down on the ground.
"Uh..," Kakarott started.
"Oooooo, ouch, my head hurts," Bra mumbled, coming to.
"Oh thank Kami! You're all right!" Ranchi clasped her hands together.
Bra focused on her. "Who are you?"
"I'm Ranchi!" Ranchi said, smiling brightly. "Uh, who are you?"
"I'm Bra," Bra said, sitting up. "Hey, you look just like that Kashumi woman."
"Who?" Ranchi asked blankly.
"Never mind," Yumcha interrupted. "Say, why don't you just hand over your money, and we'll leave you in peace."
"What in the world makes you so sure I have money on me," Bra demanded, folding her arms.
"Well, it's just that we haven't been having much luck here," Ranchi explained helpfully. "The jungle doesn't invite many travelers, especially not ones carry valuables."
"Gee, I wonder why," Bra sneered. "It's only completely soggy with weird natives living in tiny villages you can only find by accident."
"Hey, come on, lady," Yumcha said, annoyed.
"Um, are we going to fight or not?" Kakarott asked, confused.
"Oh my, a little Saiyajin!" Ranchi exclaimed. "What are you doing here?"
"I'm lost," Kakarott told her.
"Really? But if you follow the road back that way, the main road, not any of the side ones - they just lead to villages - it leads to the main trade road, which goes through the desert," Ranchi said, pointing.
"Huh?" Kakarott asked, following her finger. "But that's the way I've just come," He frowned at Bra.
"Hey!" Bra snapped. "What do I look like, a mapmaker?" She bounced to her feet, and reached into one of her magic pouches, fiddling around before pulling out a long cylindrical object. She untied the ribbon on it and let it fall open. "Now. This is a map," She shot a look at Kakarott. "You know what that is, right?"
"I'm not that stupid," Kakarott grumbled.
"Yeah. Anyway, here is the Animal Kingdom," She pointed to one area, "and this is the desert, or Saiyajin Empire, or whatever you want to call it. Now, I told you we would head away from it before we went towards it. Just because I didn't know you could reach it easily by following the road is no reason to get your tail in a knot."
Kakarott frowned again, the tip of his tail flicking from it's position around his waist.
"Where did you get that map from?" Yumcha exclaimed, startled.
"Are you a magician?" Ranchi asked, wonderingly.
"Magician?!" Bra scowled. "Don't be ridiculous! I'm a sorceress!"
"Yeah, right," Yumcha scoffed. "A sorceress, and you don't have any valuables."
"Oh please," Bra sneered. "Being a sorceress is a lot of work, and we cannot turn metal into gold, no matter what you've been told. I can turn gold into less gold, though, if you'd like to see..."
Yumcha blinked, then frowned at her.
"What are you doing in the jungle? Looking for special ingredients for your spells?" Ranchi asked, eyes wide.
"No, she's looking for the Dragonballs," Kakarott answered. They all stared at him.
"Dragonballs?" Yumcha asked.
"The ones that grant a wish?" Ranchi questioned Bra.
"Ha ha ha! Well, that's what the story says they do," Bra laughed nervously. "I have no idea whether they work."
"Oh, what would you wish for if they did?" Ranchi implored.
"Um, it's not important," Bra dismissed the question.
"Ah-choo!" Ranchi sneezed. Her hair turned blond. Kashumi sneered at Bra. "Come on, you have to have some idea. Queen of the world?"
"No!" Bra scowled. "And what's with the hair?"
"I'm told my hair changes colour when I sneeze. Immense wealth?"
"No, and you sure act different when you sneeze too."
"Yeah whatever. What about immortality?" Kashumi demanded.
"What the hell is it with people and immortality?" Bra practically screamed. "Do you want to live forever?!"
"Eh," Kashumi shrugged. "Probably not, but I wouldn't mind not being able to be killed. Now spill."
Bra sighed. "The perfect husband," She muttered.
"A husband?" Yumcha gasped. He dissolved into laughter. Bra scowled.
"Pay him no heed," Kashumi ordered. She put a hand on Bra's shoulder. "Girl, you have a good head on your neck. I can't think of any other way to find a perfect man. I have a really good idea though. If you're on such a dangerous quest, you need people along who can fight, right? To protect your interests."
"I guess," Bra narrowed her eyes, glancing at Kashumi's hand.
"Tell ya what, Yumcha and I will come with you as hired help. We find the Dragonballs. You wish for a perfect husband and immense wealth. We get the wealth, and you can keep the husband."
"Hmm," Bra mused, her eyes slowing lighting up. "I think I like that idea!"
"What?! You've got to be kidding!" Yumcha exclaimed. "Kashumi, there's no guarantee the Dragonballs will work, they're a children's bedtime story! And even if they do, we'll spend the rest of our lives searching for them!"
"Bah, rubbish," Bra snorted. "I've already found three, and I know where the other four are."
"You do?" Kashumi stared at her.
"Mm hm," Bra nodded, pulling out her amulet smugly. "I created this amulet." The yellow dots appeared. "These lights indicate the locations of Dragonballs. It's especially tuned to their magical energy."
"But there are only five dots," Yumcha pointed out.
"Of course! I have three of them on me, and I'm condensing the world into this tiny circle!" Bra snapped. "There are three dots in the same place!"
"Use your head, Yumcha," Kashumi scowled.
Yumcha scowled back.
"Hey, are you sure I can get to the Saiyajin Empire by following the road?" Kakarott asked Kashumi.
"Huh? Yeah sure, kid. Follow the main road, and you'll end up in the desert," Kashumi told him.
"The desert?" Kakarott frowned.
"What, that's your Empire, isn't it?" Yumcha asked.
"Nah," Bra waved a hand. "Any good mapmaker'll tell you, after you draw in all the real kingdoms and empires, you just label the rest of the space 'Here there be Saiyajin' so it doesn't look so blank."
"You know, he's awfully quiet for a Saiyajin," Kashumi commented.
"Yeah, I noticed," Bra said. "I think he's a bit... slow."
"Oh," The blond girl nodded.
"Great, now even humans are telling me I'm stupid," Kakarott scowled. He turned around and started walking off down the road.
"Good luck, Kakarott!" Bra called after him. "I hope you don't get lost again!"
"Okay," Kashumi asked. "Where's this next Dragonball?"
"Vegeta-Ouji," The tall Saiyajin bowed slightly.
"What is it, Radditz?" Vegeta asked in a bored tone.
"Uh, I was wondering... my brother, Kakarott went out on a scouting mission two days ago and he hasn't come back yet. If you weren't planning on doing anything interesting tomorrow, I'd... like to go look for him," Radditz said, his tone indicating that he wanted to only because someone else was pressuring him.
"Kakarott's missing, huh?" Vegeta rolled his eyes. "Probably got himself killed by some humans."
"Actually, I think he's lost."
"Yeah, you know, he just hasn't been the same since that bump on the head," Radditz reminded him.
"I'm perfectly aware of that," Vegeta snapped.
"So, can I go?"
"I suppose your father talked you into this?"
"Well, Tabelu had a word or two to say about it."
"I thought she dismissed Kakarott from her services. Too stupid."
"No disrespect, Vegeta-sama, but this is Tabelu we're talking about."
Vegeta sneered. "Of course. She never can make up her mind. Hmm. Actually, other than training, I haven't got anything planned for tomorrow. I suppose we might as well go try and find your useless brother."
"We?" Radditz asked, surprised.
"Yes. Maybe we'll run into some humans. Target practice is always more interesting with live targets."
"Absolutely," Radditz agreed.
"Remind me to bump your brother on the head."
- Finis Chapter 1 -
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