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Chapter 11: They're Heeere
Gohan never took his eyes off the androids as his father and the others dropped in front of him protectively. He knew he was much stronger than these androids but it would be unwise to lower his guard in the presence on any enemy. Yamcha was still on the ground behind him gasping, as he tried to breath with at least one collapsed lung from the hole through his torso.
He heard his father speaking to the androids, he sounded angry but Gohan heard little of it. His mind was racing through things he could of done, should have done. He knew Yamcha had been hurt badly before, he should have watched him better, followed him. Piccolo caught his eye and like he knew what his student was thinking shook his head very subtly.
'Times change. You cannot predict what will change.' Piccolo's thought echoed in his head just before the Namek refocused his attention on the conversation. Gohan frowned, they have been over this, it just still felt like his fault. The nine year old took a breath and pushed his guilt away. Piccolo was right and he needed to focus.
"Gohan, take Yamcha back to Bulma and give him a senzu bean." Goku ordered just after the androids flew off. Gohan nodded turning back to the fallen fighter as his father and everyone else followed the androids to a battle ground away from the city. As he flew Yamcha as quickly and as carefully as someone half the man's size could, Gohan tried to clear the past from his mind, this wasn't last time, and no one was guaranteed safety. They all knew that coming here.
If he had gone with Yamcha the androids could have attacked one of the others who were alone, and they could have died. Nothing was certain anymore and he needed to start thinking that way. He could use his past for information but it couldn't make his decisions for him. Kami, if he didn't have superior genes he would probably have a stress ulcer by now.
He held Trunks as Bulma worried over Yamcha. She was frantic though as she handed the baby over before trying to give an almost unconscious Yamcha a senzu bean and Trunks of course was wailing from sensing his mother's distress.
"Shh, it's okay Trunks." Gohan whispered taking Trunks a little further away from the action. "He'll be okay." He knew it didn't really matter what he said as long as his tone was calm. It wasn't working as well as he hope though so Gohan tried blanketing his energy around them like he always does with Goten, and took a deep breath, making sure his energy was calm.
Trunks quieted but wriggled a little and frowned, like he was trying to figure out what he was feeling came from. Gohan watched as Trunks opened his eyes and for a moment thought Trunks would reject his energy, not wanting to be comforted by someone he'd only met today but then Trunks reached his hand out and touched Gohan's face in fascination. Like he'd never seen anything like the boy holding him before, and Gohan knew he was the little boy's new friend.
"Gohan?" Bulma asked behind him. When he turn around to her she looked confused as Trunks had a moment ago.
"Yes, Aunt Bulma?" He looked around her to see Yamcha was doing okay now, but sitting still, probably in shock.
"He never calms down so fast, what did you do?" Bulma asked in awe like he might give her the secret to life. Gohan smiled as he let Trunks play with his hand and fingers.
"I just wrap my energy around him, Goten likes it, and Trunks was upset so I thought I'd give it a try." He smiled up at his stunned Aunt.
"Oh," she sighed "I guess that means I can't do it. Too bad, it would save a lot of headaches. Say you wouldn't mind babysitting?" Bulma smirked like she had found something almost as good as instant cry-stop. Then she blinked. "Who's Goten?"
"Uh," Gohan blinked back; well there went the surprise Mom wanted. "He's my Brother." He answered hesitantly. Honestly he had no idea why his mother wanted to keep Goten a secret from everyone… Except maybe to protect him. Gohan felt his stomach sink, what if the others wanted Goten to fight? Like they made him? No.
That was it. No. He may of accidently told Bulma of his brother's existence but there was no way Goten was getting involved in any future battle. They'd have to kill him first.
Bulma just kind of stared at him shocked for a moment like she could believe someone would not tell her there was a new addition to the family. Hypocrite. Gohan gently handed Trunks back, and whispered, hoping Yamcha hadn't heard him before.
"Don't tell; Mom wanted it to be a surprise, like you." He smile at her before running a few steps away and blasting into the sky towards the others; he was at least five minutes behind. Even though Yamcha still seemed to be in shock he snapped out of it enough to yell out as Gohan was leaving to tell Goku that the androids can absorb energy. Gohan nodded to him before rushing after the energy signatures of the others. He already knew that and had told Piccolo but he would be sure to tell his father now that he had a reason to know.
Before the androids had blown up half the city and now they took off just ahead of the others. What was different, was it because he stepped in? Did he give something away? Like that they were strong than Gero thought they were. Gohan frowned and sped up, he had been angry and let some of his power slip, not a lot but he really needed better control. He smiled as he felt Yamcha take off after him. The guy maybe a sore loser about Bulma but at least he was a loyal friend.
Gohan slowed as he felt the others stop and Yamcha caught up flying just slightly behind him, it was hard to sense them when they weren't using their energy to even fly. So he went in the direction he felt them land and slowed even more after a minute, he couldn't be sure exactly where they landed just by judging from so far behind.
"Can you sense them?" Yamcha asked, looking around below them.
"Not anymore, but they can't be far." The little saiyan replied pursing his lips in worry. Suddenly they both snapped their heads up. His father had gone super and was now more than easy to pin point. "That's my dad!" he told Yamcha as he took off after the large power. He tried to hurry but he felt his father almost immediately engage in battle. Though he could sense the other side of the battle obviously as the androids couldn't be sensed.
It was only a few minutes before he could see the fight, "That's them!" he called behind him because he knew he could see further than a human. "Dad!" Gohan called up as he landed next to the others. He knew he couldn't interfere with the fight, but even just getting there he could see there was something wrong with his father. He was breathing heavily and even though there wasn't a scratch on him, he looked like he was trying harder than he should be.
"Hey, don't worry. Your dad has everything under control." Tien said confidently, trying to placate him. "That android never had a chance." After a moment of watching his father beating down the android the others put in their thoughts of how Goku was going to win. Gohan stay silent watching in worry and looking for any sign of the heart virus. Piccolo didn't say a word either, he knew it was far from over from Gohan.
"I'm not even worried anymore! Are you Gohan?" Krillen asked.
"Yea…" Gohan replied absently, his mind and eyes still on his father.
"You're right to worry Gohan." Piccolo put in, he knew that Gohan didn't needed his to back him up, that the boy knew from his future to worry, but it was expected. And the others needed to be aware that Goku was in trouble. "Goku is just not his usual confident self. His attacks aren't even hurting the android. He is going to need our help you guys!"
"Hey wait a sec, he seems fine." Tien put in. "You're being paranoid I mean look at him, what could go wrong?" If Gohan was willing to take his eyes off the fight he would have glared at him for that question. Like they needed a jinx.
"I tell you some things not right, Goku's maxed out for some reason. He is going to give out if this keeps up." Piccolo tried to convince them. Gohan frowned, they all believed in his father so much that they wouldn't even notice that he needed help. He had to make them believe.
"Hey Yamcha remember you said when the android touched you it was like you could feel yourself getting weaker?" Gohan questioned Yamcha, turning from the fight for the first time to look at the man. He knew it wasn't that, because the android absorbed energy through it's hands and hadn't had an opportunity to do so. Until there was some kind of sign that it was the heart virus he couldn't just tell them. After all he could be wrong, and if he wasn't he couldn't explain it. He turned back to the fight as Yamcha explained how the androids stole his energy.
Just in time for his father to kick nineteen so close to them a dust cloud rolled over all of them. He looked up to see his father completely out of breath, his face slightly pinched in pain even as he tried to hide it, and guilt built in his own chest. Should he have told him? Could he have saved his father this pain? And then his father started building up a Kamehameha wave.
"NO! Dad don't! He'll absorb it!" Gohan called moving a few steps forward before Piccolo grabbed his shoulder. He didn't fight his mentor's hold, he couldn't jump into a fight like that, he knew that. It was too late though, either his father couldn't hear him or was so focused on the fight he was ignoring him but he fired the powerful beam. Gohan couldn't help but cringe as Nineteen laughed putting his hand out to suck all his father's energy wave in.
By the end of it his father was sweating, looking worse than before and Nineteen was probably stronger than before the fight began. No one question him on why he'd called out or stepped forward. They were all too shocked to notice his slip but right now he was wishing he'd told them everything. Piccolo maybe right that things could go differently but it was going closely enough that it might have helped more than hurt for them to know.
Piccolo squeezed his shoulder before letting go and stepping in front of him to call up to his father. "Goku don't use any of your energy waves! They absorb energy through their hands! It will only make them stronger! Understand!?" The Namek was getting more worried about Goku's condition. He knew it was a possibility that he get the virus at the same time as he did in Gohan's old timeline but he was hoping otherwise.
"You're kidding!" His father called back exhausted. The others starting with Krillen finally noticed his father was running on fumes. Though they seem to think it was from losing the energy. Piccolo tried to push them away from the thought with the logic that he hadn't used enough energy to exhaust himself. Gohan wasn't listening anymore though, he was gritting his teeth as that weak excuse for a robot started hurting his father in his weakened state.
He wanted so badly to jump in and pulverize the thing but his father would never let him. Until his father was down or asked for help he couldn't do anything. He father tried to fire another energy wave in frustration but couldn't pull it off and backed off; lowing himself to the ground. The other were finally worried and then he saw it, his father was clutching his chest.
"Guys look!" Gohan wasted no time telling them. "He is grabbing at his heart! It must be the virus!" he told them. Normally it be a bit of a leap but in the circumstances no one argued with him. And Piccolo immediately back him up saying the stress from transforming must have brought it out. Now could he jump in? Would his father let him? Even if he father stopped so he could give him the medicine it wouldn't work immediately. His father would have to back out of the fight and his father never did that while he was still standing, except when he'd planned it with Cell. The fight had moved so that 20 was between them and Goku.
"Father!" Gohan called as his father dropped to one knee, and prepared to go to him.
"Gohan, stay!" Goku ordered though he was gasping. Gohan stilled at his father's command, his fists shaking, clinched at his side as he watched. Krillen had the sense to throw Goku a senzu bean but it wasn't having much effect.
"It's not working." Gohan stated as the others began to see the truth as 19 was easily beating Goku. "He needs the antidote, I have some with me but I need to get to him and it will take time to work." As his father hit the ground and dropped out of super saiyan Gohan knew he should do something soon. Letting his senses stretch out he was relieved to feel Vegeta close by.
When 19 pounced on his father's downed form and started draining his energy Gohan moved not waiting for the others thoughts. They followed, but 20 flew in front of all of them from his angle and blocking them off from Goku.
"Stay where you are. That is, of course, if any of you are foolish enough to believe that you can get-" 20 started, but with his father weakening with every moment Gohan wasn't going to let him finish and attacked him head on. The android wasn't expecting him to not fear him, or be fast so he got a good hit in before he had to pull back to dodge 20's eye beams.
They singed Krillen's arm behind him and Gohan felt guilt go through him but shook it off, he just had to remember where everyone was and making sure nothing hit them again. As 19 started to laugh Gohan felt his rage spike and engaged 20 again. His fist and feet flying fast, his mind on only one thing, getting to his father. In the back of his thoughts he hoped one of the others would take the distraction and go help his father.
Piccolo was about to do just that when Vegeta came out of nowhere and sucker kick 19 a few miles. Gohan slammed his foot into 20, throwing him in the same direction the other android though not quite as far, he wasn't in super form. The little saiyan didn't purse him though and went straight to his father, who didn't even look conscious anymore. Damn it, he knew his father would be out of fighting shape for a while but he was hoping if he could stop this sooner his father would recover faster.
"Nobody is going to kill Kakarot while I'm around; destiny has reserved that pleasure for me." Vegeta stated to the dust that led to android 19. While the others were stunned at seeing what they were just figuring out was Vegeta saving Goku, Gohan ignored them and knelt down by his father's side.
"You're pitiful Kakarot; you were warned about the heart virus. You should have known that turning into a super saiyan would only make it worse. Really Kakarot you're far too forgiving to be a great warrior." Vegeta gloated as his father continued to groan in pain, Gohan looked up briefly to glare at the saiyan Prince but turn back away as he pulled out the little bit of the antidote that he brought with him.
"At least your kid is prepared." Vegeta stated raised an eyebrow as Gohan unscrewed the little vial.
"Here Dad take this; it's a little bit of the antidote Trunks brought." He explained tipping the vial slowly into Goku's mouth. He could feel Vegeta's eyes on him and realized his mistake. He wasn't supposed to use Trunks' name.
"I'll finish these android but then you're next got it?" Vegeta finally stated walking around him and Goku toward the androids. His father couldn't even open his eyes let alone answer and Gohan didn't bother saying anything, there was no way he was going to let anyone fight with his father until he made a full recovery.
"One of you needs to take Kakarot home right now, he's running out of time. And will only be a hindrance on the battle field." Most the other's seemed to take offence but Gohan was pretty sure that was Vegeta speak for being worried about his father's life.
"I got him." Gohan stated. He really wanted to stay but he didn't think it would make a difference at this point, his father was already down and he hadn't even been able to get to him any sooner.
"Please let me!" Yamcha called coming over. "They need you kid, sad to say but I'd just be in the way here." Yamcha state carefully lifting Goku up and over his shoulder. Gohan looked at Yamcha assessing him. It had to be hard admitting that a nine year old was stronger, more useful, than you. He nodded to Yamcha. Maybe he could still do something; it was a slim shot but if he could keep Gero from awakening 17 and 18 it would make things easier.
The only reason he couldn't just destroy Gero before he ran away is because he couldn't remember exactly where the lab was hidden and it would take a long time to search through all those mountains to find it. He had already destroyed Cell, but if he really wanted all of this to be over the androids and the Cell that wouldn't be ready for twenty years under the lab had to be destroyed too. He had been much less worried since he had stopped that Cell in the mountains but he couldn't help but think something was going to go wrong.
Piccolo warned Yamcha about catching the virus as he and the others reached them. Yamcha thanked him before lifting into the air. After he was gone, Gero started gloating to 19 about how they could destroy him anytime and would hunt him down after killing all his 'pitiful friends'. Gohan's tail flicked in anger, catching Vegeta's eye. He glared but said nothing. Krillen noticed and almost swallowed his tongue biting back a gasp.
Gohan looked at him, momentarily distracted from glaring at Gero and saw what he was looking at. Frowning Gohan swiftly wrapped his tail back around his waist and looked to Vegeta. Who gave him a nod so slight he may have not have done it at all.
Gohan mostly ignored Krillen's reasoning to run away. Through he knew he used the same argument about the androids going on a killing spree if left to their own devices. He felt Piccolo's words wash over him though about how there are many difference between the timelines and acting as if they had never heard Trunks' prophecy. He knew that was partly directed towards him and he would continue to do his best in that.
As 19 got permission to fight Vegeta Gohan almost smirked. The evil creature had just signed his own death warrant. He barely kept in a chuckle as Vegeta transformed and everyone's mouth dropped but Piccolo. And Krillen blathered about how he thought a super saiyan had to be like Goku. Oh they had no idea, he couldn't imagine what they thought when he ascended into the next level. He listened as Vegeta recounted his tale of how he transformed, that he'd been training at 450 time normal gravity before his trip to space.
Gohan knew he'd been lucky to have someone who was already a super saiyan giving him hints. His father wouldn't push him over the edge until he confronted him but he did train him. Made him a little stronger every day so that when the time came he was more than ready.
Vegeta broke, he let go when he stopped caring about it, about being better than Goku and his pride no longer pushing him he changed. Gohan remembered snapping for the opposite reason, he needed the power because he did care. Because he couldn't be the little kid on the battle field that always needed someone else to save him anymore. Vegeta was right, to each saiyan their own way.
The nine year old time traveler let his eyes follow the battle however he wasn't paying attention to anything but the movements. The taunts and mind games meaning nothing to him, he knew how this would end. 19 hadn't changed from what Gohan had seen from his fight with Goku and he could sense Vegeta's power. He took a deep breath before doing something he hadn't in his timeline, he started observing Gero.
The old looking android watched in what Gohan knew had to be slowly fading confidence. Though Gero's face was blank until Gohan heard Vegeta ripe off 19's hand. Stupidly letting the android drain him in a display of confidence. He finally saw true shock on Gero's face though when Vegeta completely destroyed 19 as if it was a toy that he no longer found entertaining.
"Just give it to him Krillen." Gohan stated as he finally tuned back in when Gero fled and Vegeta asked for a senzu bean. "We're all on the same side right now." He added looking as open as he could when Krillen frowned at him. He was more used to his father defending their old enemies but at least he knew he was right this time. Krillen still didn't look happy about it but threw one to the saiyan Prince.
After Vegeta took off and despite the prince's advice for them all to go home Gohan follow half a minute behind not waiting for the others to finish arguing about it. Piccolo was right behind him and then Krillen with Tien coming up last.
"Kid?" Piccolo asked coming up beside him. Gohan looked over at him before turning back to watch where he was going.
"We need him to lead us to his lab and destroy androids 17 and 18 before he activates them." Gohan tried to compress everything that was spinning through his mind. Piccolo nodded in understanding.
"You need to calm your mind, focus on the here and now. Not what was or could be." Piccolo ordered him gently. Gohan took a breath and slowly let it out and forced himself to stop thinking ahead to things that might not be important or even real in this timeline anymore. He nodded to Piccolo as he focused on the present.
"We will try to stop him from releasing them if that is what he's going for but if we can't we will stop them." The Namek stated as they saw Vegeta stopped ahead. "Now we should split up to cover more ground. The others are already looking."
Gohan nodded and they both split into different directions away from Vegeta. Of course he was sure Vegeta already knew they had been there and could probably tell everyone had followed and spread out to search for 20. It wasn't long though before Gohan sensed Vegeta's frustration give way in the form of a giant pot shot. The nine year old frown as he watched 20 zip out of hiding to absorb Vegeta's attack.
Of course Gero ran away before Vegeta could get to him and disappeared quickly. Gohan twitched to go after him but knew it would be a waste of time Vegeta was already trying that but with the terrain and being unable to sense the android it was useless until they could corner him. Maybe he was going about it the wrong way though, should he be trying to find Gero's lab instead of him?
It was where Gero was going, even if his timeline was different Gero would be going somewhere to hide and get reinforcements. He hadn't looked for the lab since he got to this time because of the possibility of releasing 17 and 18 early and because he couldn't remember where it was but now he had a general place to start… As he looked around though finding it still didn't look too plausible.
Gohan I need your help quick! Gohan it's me hurry the android has me! Gohan froze in his searching for less than a second before turning shooting off towards Piccolo's swiftly draining energy. He knew it was Piccolo contacting him telepathically and he didn't need to think, he didn't breathe, he just moved.
"Do not worry about the future for it is not yet come. Live each day in the present and make it beautiful."
Hey, I know been awhile life has been... trying. Anyway you can up my day with a pretty review :3