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Price of the Priceless

Chapter 6: A Race into Space

by Hatashi Kitty

Careful not to set off the lasers, Picolo placed his smallest finger down into a small screw hole. His nail fit neatly into the grooves of the small screw. Slowly, the Namek twisted his finger. He smiled slightly as he felt the screw move. After a dozen or more twists, the screw came out easily. He repeated this action with the other screws that held down the floor’s metallic tiles.
Picolo quickly removed the sheet of metal. Now the wires and software of the spaceship were unprotected. A few energy blasts later Picolo dropped down to a lower level.
“Prisoner escape! Prisoner escape!” a loud voice blared throughout the ship. The voice woke up many of the other prisoners as the Namek raced around their cages. They started shouting and cheering Picolo on.
The escapee dashed through the ship as fast as he could, not knowing where he had to go, or how to get out. Soon lasers popped out of the ceiling, and started shooting at him. With more room, Picolo was able to dodge most of them, but the small stinging hits started slowing him down.
“Activating mind catcher,” the voice called out.
No, not that again, Picolo shouted in his head. He remembered that horrible vision with Gohan. He couldn’t go through that again. With renewed strength, Picolo ran faster. But the maze of glass cages seemed to go on forever. In his desperation, the Namek didn’t notice the cylinder shaped poles coming up though the floor until he tripped over one.
“What are those things?” he asked himself. Hundreds of them were springing up out of the floor. They reached up to four feet when they stopped growing.
“Mind catcher activated,” the voice informed.
“Nooo!” Picolo shouted as beams of bright light shot from each of the poles.
Picolo then relieved his entire nightmare. Gohan dying. Pulling the cloak down from the murderer to see his own face. The blood on his hands. And this time it seemed more horrible and gruesome then before.
When Picolo woke up, he was back in a glass cage. The floor was more secure and the ceiling was lined with lasers.
“Darn it, I was so close,” Picolo shouted, and slammed his fists on the floor.
After a laser popped out of the ceiling and zapped him, Picolo lunged upward for it. He hit the top of the ceiling hard, and burned his hand. He punched again at the ceiling. A laser from the floor came out and shot him as well.
Picolo’s angry welled up. He started punching and kicking wherever, ignoring the lasers that continued to punish him.
It only took a minute to finally wear down. He collapsed onto the floor, exhausted and bleeding. “Gohan. . .” Picolo called out weakly. “Please find me.”

*******

“Hey, Videl. What are you doing here?” Gohan asked in a cracked voice.
“All night I have been tied to a tree screaming my lungs out. You wouldn’t know who is responsible, do you?” Videl asked sarcastically.
“Videl, I can explain,” Gohan told her, putting his hands in between them, palms toward her.
“You better, because I’m this close to ripping out your kidneys,” Videl yelled her threat.
She’s really mad. I’m scared, Gohan thought, sweat seeping from his pours.
“Now start explaining. Where are those dirty car thieves?” Videl demanded. She spied something behind him. “Why are they here?’ she whispered to him.
“It’s. . .complicated,” Gohan told her.
“You three,” she shouted at the trio. “You are under arrest.”
“Gohan, what is she talking about?” Quin asked, stepping out of the house.
Raikel’s eyebrows turned down, and she frowned. “You tricked us, “ she accused. “We trusted you. You said you would help us.”
“And he will,” Treena said to Raikel soothingly. “Won’t you Gohan?”
“I promised I would,” Gohan said sincerely.
“Three hours and thirty minutes, Gohan,” Quin counted down.
Quickly, Gohan figured out a plan, but it was messy. It could work if everything went right.
“Go with Videl,” Gohan told the trio.
“What?” Raikel shouted.
“Trust me. Go with her, and I’ll see you in a while.”
After a few doubting looks, Raikel relented. The trio allowed themselves to be handcuffed by Videl.
“Good work, Gohan,” Videl praised him, angry and bitter. “Whatever you did worked.”
“Videl, I need you to do me a favor,” Gohan asked of the young woman. “I need you to get these three in front of a judge ASAP.”
“Huh?”
“Just do it. There’s something big going on. These three are in the middle of it, and I need your help,” Gohan tried to explain without revealing too much.
Videl sighed. She’s had a very long night, and it looked to her that the day wasn’t looking any brighter. “All right. But you better explain the whole thing to me later.”
I hope I can do that without telling you everything, Gohan thought.
Once the four were in Videl’s plane copter, and out of sight, Gohan sighed. This was the first quiet time he had in thirty-six hours. He wished he could just lay down, and sleep, but he had other things to do.
Just in time, Bulma’s hovercraft flew in from the horizon, and landed right in the lawn. Bulma quickly jumped out, and ran over to the youth.
“Gohan, I’m so glad I didn’t miss you. I have some great news. I finished the spaceship earlier than expected,” Bulma told him cheerfully.
“That’s great,” Gohan cheered. “You finished it just in time. Now there’s something else I need you to do.” He quickly told the older woman about his long night and this morning.
“Those poor kids. What do you need me to do?” Bulma inquired.
“As soon as you drop Trunks and Goten at school, meet me at the court house. And bring your check book,” Gohan told her. “I have to get going. I have less than four hours left.” From there he left her alone as he took off into the air.
Bulma sighed. She had a bad feeling when Gohan told her to bring her checkbook.

***********

Vegeta didn’t know how long he had been gone from the earth. It felt like years. But for all he knew, it could have just been a few hours. Time continued to play tricks on his mind. Did anyone notice he was gone? Were they looking for him? Did they even care?!
Vegeta glanced at the other Saiyin. He was in a lotus position as if in deep meditation. How could he be so calm? Numerous times Vegeta had asked him questions. Where did you come from? How did you survive the planet’s destruction? Was he mocking Vegeta by just sitting there in silence? Yes, he was mocking him. Vegeta’s anger boiled as he told himself this.
“Hey you,” Vegeta roared out suddenly. “Who are you?”
The Saiyin opened his good eye, looked at his noisy neighbor, and then closed it.
Vegeta wanted to hit the glass to emphasize his voice, but he knew better. “Hey! I demand you tell me who you are? How did you survive?”
Still silence.
“Tell me! If you don’t, I’ll kill you. When I get out of here, I’m going to beat you until you tell me,” Vegeta shouted at him. Vegeta’s energy flared, causing the whole ship to shake.
When Vegeta calmed down, laughter rang out through the ship.
“Who’s there?” Vegeta shouted.
“Did you hear that?” a giggily voice laughed. “He said, ‘When I get out’. What an idiot!”
“Yeah,” a deep voice agreed. “Nobody can get out of these cells. But let him try. We haven’t had this kind of entertainment in years.”
“Shut-up,” Vegeta shouted at the voice. He couldn’t decipher where they were coming from. “Shut-up, all of you!”
“Or what?” a snaky voice demanded. “Are you going to break out of there and kill us?”
The laughter continued louder.
Vegeta growled, ready to show them how wrong they are.
“Ignore them,” a gruff voice told the Saiyin prince.
Vegeta turned to see the Saiyin smiling at him. The smile wasn’t a scorning one. It was as if he knew that Vegeta could do as he said.
“I know being trapped in here is overwhelming, but calm down. Something will come along.”
“Something?” Vegeta asked pryingly. Then he smiled with understanding. “You know something, don’t you?”
The Saiyin’s smile became a little bigger. “Let’s just wait, and see if this old man really knows anything. By the way, my name is Negi, not ‘Hey you’.” And the Saiyin sat down again.
Negi, Vegeta mulled over the name in his head. Where have I heard that name before? It sounds familiar.

***********

According to 17's data, he and Hatashi had been trapped in their cell for over 36 hours. It wasn’t that he was worried, but he knew the woman hadn’t had any food or water that entire time. Surprisingly, she was still talking, but it sounded weak and parched. She hardly moved.
17 didn’t know why he started collecting the moisture in the air with his energy. Maybe it was because he wouldn’t have anyone to talk to if she died. It had been so long since he had talked to anyone. It had been even longer since someone WANTED to talk to him. So he gathered all the water vapor until the air was dry.
“Here, drink this,” 17 told her putting the water near her lips. It wasn’t a lot, but it was enough to keep her alive a bit longer.
Hatashi quickly swallowed it. “Thank you, 17,” she said.
“Hey, you didn’t call me Bob,” 17 said with a hint of a smile on his face.
“Do you really want me to call you Bob?” Hatashi asked smiling.
“I don’t know,” 17 shrugged. “It’s strange to have a name. It’s kind of nice.”
Hatashi laughed a little. “Do you really like the name Bob?”
“No,” 17 said. “But you can think of a different name for me.”
“How about Fred?”
“No.”
“Clarence?”
“No.”
“Lenny?”
“No.”
“Gee, you’re picky,” Hatashi argued.
“You’re not even thinking that hard about those names,” 17 countered.
Suddenly the floor started to shake. Hatashi grabbed 17's arm as they were pushed to one side of the cage. Among the chaos, 17 felt Vegeta’s energy.
“Vegeta’s here, too,” 17 observed.
Debris outside of their cage was flying around. A small screw flew out of nowhere and hit the outside of the glass. 17 heard it with his sensitive sensors. Just after that, the energy died down, and things returned to normal.
“What was that?” Hatashi asked shakily.
“An opportunity,” 17 answered. He went over to the glass to inspect the area the screw hit. At the area, he found a small crack. “As I thought,” 17 said out loud. “This glass is super strengthened on the inside, made just to keep things in. But on the outside, it’s as weak as regular glass.”
“Huh?” Hatashi inquired confused.
“Get behind me,” 17 ordered sternly.
Hatashi did so slowly from the lack of energy. She steadied herself by holding onto the android’s shoulders.
17 concentrated on building as strong of an energy attack as he could. It couldn’t be too strong, or he and Hatashi would be caught in the explosion. He back up to the opposite side of the crack, and threw the energy ball.
The explosion was larger than 17 expected, because there was less room. The air around them was pushed away building up a lot of pressure. 17 could feel Hatashi hugging closely to him, her body trembling.
Hatashi had closed her eyes through the whole ordeal. When she opened them, she saw a red light, and felt 17's body jump. She looked up into 17's face. It was twisted in pain. Then she noticed him grabbing his arm that was oozing blood from a wound.
“You’re bleeding?!” she exclaimed. “How did that happen?”
“That crazy old man must have set a trap or something. Curse him.”
“Here, let me see it,” Hatashi told him holding his arm.
“I’m fine,” 17 told her, and pulled his arm away.
“Let me see it,” Hatashi said sternly, and carefully grabbed the hand covering the wound.
17 let her pry his hand away from his arm. He heard her gasp.
“We need to wrap this up quickly. I hope this isn’t your favorite shirt.”
“Why?”
There was a ripping sound. 17 looked over and saw his whole sleeve had been torn off. Hatashi now held it to the wound.
“Put some pressure on it,” Hatashi ordered putting his other hand back on the wound. “Hold it tightly, while I tied this on.”
17 watched as Hatashi untied her scarf from her neck, and retie it to his wound. He was surprised. If it was 18's scarf, she wouldn’t use it to tie up his wound. Already the blood was seeping into the scarf. Who was this woman?
“Good, the blood seems to be stopping,” Hatashi told him. She sighed, and sat back down. She was about to wipe her forehead, but she saw that there was blood on her hands. She stared hard at the blood as if it would go away any minute. Her countenance turned confused. “Wait a minute. You’re an android. How can you bleed?”
“I’m an android, not a robot,” 17 told her. “Androids are part mechanical, part organic. My main organic part is my brain. For my brain to keep working, it needs blood. That’s why I bleed.”
Hatashi nodded in understanding.
17 sat down next to her.
“So, do androids also have feelings?” she asked.
17 smiled. “Yes, thank goodness. I can be happy, sad, angry, board, grumpy. . .”
“How about grateful?” Hatashi teased.
“What’s that?” 17 teased back.
Hatashi laughed and hugged the android unexpectedly. “You’re so funny BOB! I love you!”
17 was startled by her words, then grew still. “How could you love me? We only met a while ago. You don’t know anything about me.”
Hatashi smiled knowingly, and shook a finger at him. “Someone who’s been this nice to me, and can smile like you can it a good person. And I love all good people.”
If only you knew about my past, 17 thought. I wonder if you would love me then.
There was silence for a while.
“That’s one emotion I don’t know if an android can feel,” 17 started. “Love.”
“What about 18?” Hatashi contradicted. “She wouldn’t have married my friend if she didn’t love him.”
17 was silent for a while. “Maybe it’s just me.”

********

Saiya-Man paced in the foyer of the court house. Many people gave him strange looks and glares for his choice of clothing style.
“I’m here,” Bulma called out, rushing to him. “Dropping off the kids took longer than I thought it would.”
“That’s okay. The hearing hasn’t started yet,” Saiya-Man said rushing her along to the juvenile court. He led her into one of the court room. When they walked in, everyone’s heads turned to him. The super hero ignored them all.
The trio sat in the defendant’s chairs, handcuffed to the table, and sorrowful looking. Raikel was the first to look up when the super hero entered. She took one look at him, and her face turned to rage.
“You!” she yelled. “I’m going to get you for what you did to me last night!” She stood up, ready to break out of her handcuffs.
“Easy, Raikel. It’s just me,” Gohan said within his costume.
“Gohan!” the trio exclaimed together.
“Shhhh!” Saiya-Man shushed them quickly. He looked around hoping nobody heard. Gratefully, everyone was too busy talking to take notice. He sighed, and turned to the three teens. “Please call me Saiya-Man as long as I’m dressed like this,” he pleaded.
“So it was YOU the entire time!” Raikel yelled, grabbing his loose green cloak. “I should have beat the living day light. . .”
“Rai, sit down,” Quin begged. “Everyone is watching.”
Raikel obediently sat, glaring at Saiya-Man suspiciously.
“Listen to me,” he rushed in with a serious tone. “You must plead guilty. If you do, you can get out of here faster. Got it?”
The three nodded.
Then the bailiff entered into the court room. “All rise for the honorable Judge Torihime.”
The entire room stood up as a small old woman dressed in black robes walked into the room. As she seated herself she said gruffly, “You may be seated.” The judge went through a few folders on her desk. She looked confused as she read the folders. “Is this brief correct?” she asked the bailiff. “There is no personal information of the defendants.”
“Your honor,” the prosecutor said proudly, and scholarly while standing up. “The defendants refused to give us any information about them. Even their own names. The police took their finger prints, but there aren’t any files on them.”
Saiya-Man slapped himself in the face.
Judge Torihime turned to the trio. “Why didn’t you give any of your information to the police?”
The trio just looked at each other, and finally Quin stood up. “We would like to plead guilty. . .uh. . .your honor.” He sat back down timidly, glancing around to see if he broke some sort of court etiquette.
The judge looked down at them through squinty eyes. “Where’s your lawyer?”
The prosecutor stood up once again. “Your honor, the defendants refused to have one represent them.”
“Why is that?”
“They say that they can defend themselves.”
Judge Torihime rubbed her forehead as if she had a headache, while Raikel nodded her head defiantly.
Treena stood up. “Your Honor, we refused all help because we understood the seriousness of our crimes. We know we have wronged so many people, and we’d like to atone for our actions.” Treena’s tone was much like the prosecutor, professional as if she studied public speaking.
The judge folded her fingers, and leaned forward on her desk. “That is very responsible and mature of you. However, you don’t seem to understand the laws and judicial system enough to defend yourself. If you had a lawyer, they would have explained to you the concepts of a plea bargain which would benefit you. I would have agreed to one since you have so many offenses.”
“Look, your Honor,” Raikel said less respectable than Treena. “We said we would plea guilty to everything. We won’t cower behind some bargain. We were raised better than that. We’ll take whatever punishment you give us.”
Once again, Saiya-Man mentally slapped himself. What kind of mess were they getting themselves into?
“Very well,” Torihime sighed with a nod. “Never have I heard of a case like this, but I will allow the defendants to decide for themselves without the aid of a lawyer. We will determine what that punishment is when we return tomorrow at 3:15. Before then, I want you three to give the police some information. This court is adjourned.” She was about to slam down her hammer, when some weirdo interrupted.
“Excuse me, your Honor,” Saiya-Man spoke up while standing. “May I say something?”
“Who are you?” Judge Torihime asked grumpily, looking up. She was a little tired of things not going so smoothly.
“Uh. . .I’m Saiya-Man,” Saiya-Man introduced.
“Ah, yes. You’re the one who apprehended these three,” Torihime said looking into her folders. “What is it?”
“Is there any chance for some bail for these three?’ Saiya-Man asked timidly.
Judge Torihime leaned back. “I will allow them out on a bail for 500 Zenni each, after they give the police their information. This court is adjourned, finally.” She slammed her hammer down on her desk.
Saiya-Man was about to burst with relief. He had done it. There was still a little time left. They could make it.
“One thousand, five hundred Zenni. That’s not too much,” Bulma added while taking out her check book. “I suppose this is why you wanted me.”
“Yes, sorry about this,” Saiya-Man apologized in embarrassment.
“That’s okay. You can repay me by bringing back my husband,” Bulma said with a smile.
“Deal.”

*******

Goten wriggled in his seat. So far he hated school ever since this morning. In the first place, they had to wear uniforms. His uniform was itchy, and hot. The dark blue pants were too long for his short legs, his black shoes hurt his feet, and the tie was choking him. Trunks said they looked like they were going to a funeral.
The second reason he hated school was that he hated sitting. Why couldn’t they learn while being outside, and running around? They wouldn’t even let him sit by Trunks.
He had to admit school wasn’t as bad as he thought it would. None of the girls tried to make him go on a date, or blackmail him. And the teacher, Mr. Kirune, was really nice, and helped him when he didn’t understand anything. But for the life of him, there was no way Goten was lasting to three o’ clock.
RRRRIIIIIINNNNNNGGGGG!!!!!!!
Suddenly, all of the kids in the class ran out of the door.
“Come on, Goten,” Trunks called out, pulling on Goten’s sleeve. “Let’s go to recess.”
“Okay, what’s that?” Goten asked confused.
“It’s where we go out to play.”
“Really?” Goten didn’t waste any time running outside into the sun. It felt so good being back into the sun.
Trunks started taking off his jacket, and tie to put them nicely on the grass near the school. Many of the other boys were doing the same. Goten watched, and did as they did.
“You know Goten, we should bring some different shoes to wear during recess,” Trunks suggested. “These hard shoes aren’t good for running.”
“But we’re not going to run really fast. We can’t do stuff we used to. That’s what my mom said,” Goten told his friend.
“Mine too. She said we shouldn’t practice fighting either,” Trunks said disappointedly. “I know. We can play tag,” he said cheerfully. He slapped Goten on the back. “You It!”
“Hey! No fair. You didn’t say start!” Goten shouted, and ran after his friend.
“Tough,” Trunks taunted.
The two boys spent their time trying to suppress their energy, and not run too fast. It was like a game to them, trying to be like the other children.
But their game of tag didn’t last long. The sound of crying made Trunks stop. Goten, who was in pursuit of him, ran into the purple haired youth.
“Hey, isn’t that girl from our class?” Trunks asked Goten, and pointed to a small, crying girl sitting against a tree.
“I think so. Why is she crying?’ Goten grew big-eyed at the girl. He’d heard a lot about girls from Gohan.
“I don’t know. Let’s go ask her,” Trunks said interested, and walked toward her.
“Wait Trunks. I heard girls were mean. They’ll make you go on dates and blackmail you,” Goten warned.
“Who said that?”
“Gohan. He’s told me everything girls have done to him.”
Trunks smerked. “Well, Gohan deserved it,” Trunks laughed. “Come on.”
Goten followed closely behind Trunks, keeping his friend in between him and the girl.
“Are you okay?” Trunks asked, squatting down to the girl’s level.
The girl wiped her tears away from her big brown eyes. At the presence of the two boys, she tried to stop crying, but the tears still fell onto her dress.
By the look of the dirt on her school uniform, and how messy her hair was, Trunks guessed that some bullies were being mean to her. “What the matter?” Trunks tried again.
The girl tried to talk, but more tears came. She instead pointed to a group of three older boys. They were tossing back and forth a stuffed penguin.
Trunks then recognized the girl. She sat next to Goten in the front. During class, she had that penguin with her always.
“Did those guys pick on you, and take your toy?’ Trunks asked her.
The girl nodded her head sadly.
“Come on, Goten,” Trunks ordered, and grabbed his friend’s hand. “We’re going to stop those bullies.”
“But Trunks, we’re not suppose to fight at school. Our moms said so,” Goten protested.
“Goten, those bullies need to be taught a lesson,” Trunks argued. “Don’t you remember all the things your dad did as a kid? He was doing the same thing. Stopping bullies that picked on smaller people. We can’t let them get away with this.”
“Right!” Goten agreed and together they marched up to the three bullies.
The three older boys stopped their play as the two half-Saiyins walked up.
“What do you little shrimps want?” The biggest of the three demanded. He was bigger than any of the other kids, and was probably held back a few grades. He had large feet and hands. His black hair was slicked back and he had a large over bite. Because of his appearance Goten thought he looked like a crawdad.
“That toy doesn’t belong to you,” Trunks said in a tough voice. “Return it or else.”
“Hey, I didn’t know babies could talk at that age,” the skinniest bully said. His hair was so long, it went into his eyes. He was also tall and lurpy making him look like a mop.
“I didn’t either,” crawdad boy said. “Did you Gus?”
Gus was short and fat. Really fat. He had short blond hair that was spiked up in the air, and freckles infested his face. “No, Moe. Maybe they’re some kind of super babies.”
The three bullies laughed.
“We’re NOT babies,” Goten shouted. So far he really didn’t like these guys. “Now do what Trunks said.”
“Or else what?” Moe inquired tauntingly. “You’re going to spit up all over me?” The three of them laughed again.
“Or prepare to get your butts kicked,” Trunks threatened, and went into a fighting stance.
“Oh, the baby is going to do a little Kung Fu on us,” Gus feigned fear. “I’m so scared.”
“Well, let’s teach them what for,” Moe suggested.
“Uh, can I have the little freaky haired kid?” the skinny one asked pointing to Goten.
“Sure Paul, whatever,” Moe shrugged.
“All right!” Paul cheered punching a fist into his open palm. “When I get a hold of you, you’ll be screaming for yo mama. And don’t even think of running away. I’m the fastest kid in school.”
Goten’s eyes sparkled at the challenge before him. “Are you really that fast? Then why don’t you catch me.” Goten ran off laughing with his arms spread out.
Paul took off after him surprised, but still determined.
“Kids,” Trunks said while shaking his head. “Always goofing around in the worst times.”
“I don’t like the way you talk,” Moe sneered. “I think I’ll take you on myself.”
“That’s if you can take me,” Trunks mocked.
Moe frowned with a growl. “Why you little squirt. I’ll teach you good.”
For dramatics sake, Trunks only dodged Moe’s first menial attacks with arms crossed. This only made the bully more angry.
Meanwhile, Goten was skipping around the playground at a very slow pace. Every so often he would slow down enough to let Paul think he was gaining. But once he was in reaching range, the little Saiyin would dodge away quickly. Goten led him through an obstacle course through the jungle gym, over the monkey bars, under the slide, and always out of reach.
Paul had been going at full speed all this time, and found his energy running dry. He could barely keep up while his prey was running ahead and taunting him. Finally he followed Goten back to where Moe and Trunks were fighting. There he promptly fainted from exhaustion.
“Your not very fast,” Goten told the grounded Paul. “I’m done, Trunks. Hurry up, recess is almost over.”
Trunks dodged Moe’s fist. “Fine then. This is getting boring anyway.” Trunks jumped over Moe’s kick and tapped him with his fist directly in the nose.
Moe was flung backward. “Ahhh! My nose!” Moe screamed like a little girl. He dropped the toy penguin he had in his clutches, and tried to stop the bleeding. Tears started flowing out of his eyes almost as much as the blood from his nose.
“Now if I see you bullying anyone else, I’ll have to. . .OW!” Trunks was interrupted in mid sentence by a large hand grabbing his ear.
“Young man, you’re in serious trouble,” Mr. Kirune, their teacher, said sternly. He also grabbed Moe’s ear, and was hauling the two toward the school.
Another teacher had Paul and Gus by the arms, and was following Mr. Kirune. “You there. Come along.”
Goten followed obediently dragging his feet all the way.
As they left, the small girl carefully walked from her spot under the tree toward the scene of the fight. She had watched the entire thing with wide eyes. Carefully, she picked up the discarded penguin, and looked toward the school where her heros were.

**********

Saiya-Man and Bulma had to quickly sign, and pay for the bail on the trio. It took even longer for them to figure out how to give their personal information. Out of desperation, Bulma used the story about how they were her husband’s nieces and nephew in order to have guardianship over them.
Once out of the jail cell, Quin gave them the countdown time. “Thirty minutes and counting.”
“Then hurry up,” Saiya-Man called out, and followed the group in a mad dash to the door. They were almost to freedom, when Videl stepped in between them and the door.
“You owe me an explanation,” Videl demanded.
“But. . .but. . .” Saiya-Man couldn’t find any excuse this time.
“You guys go ahead,” Bulma told them pushing the four away. “I’ll explain everything to Videl.” She winked at them. “And your ride is ready to go. It’s behind my house.”
“Thank you,” Saiya-Man called.
The four were out of the door, and in the air in no time.
“Twenty-five minutes,” Quin informed.
Bulma’s place wasn’t far. They arrived shortly after.
At that moment, the round spaceship looked more beautiful than anything. As they walked in, Saiya-Man couldn’t help but take a deep breath. It even smelled wonderful.
“Do you know how to pilot this thing, Quin?” Raikel was asking.
Quin was sitting in the pilot’s seat, and examining the computer console. “This system is more complex than I’m used to, but I bet I can figure out the basics. They’re pretty easy to spot.” Quin flipped a switch. The spaceship started to hum and vibrate. “Everyone take a seat. We’ll be launching in 5. . .4. . .3. . .”
Treena, Raikel, and Gohan ( now out of his hot and sweaty Saiya-Man costume ) scrambled to get in their seats and strapped im.
“2. . .1. Let’s go!” Quin pushed a level forward. The thrust jolted everyone back. Through the window, they could see the sky coming at them fast. Clouds whizzed by. As they were going through the atmosphere, it seemed there was more turbulence. The whole ride happened so fast that they barely believed it was over when they broke through the last cloud layer. They now faced the inky blackness of space spotted with bright shining stars.
However, looming before them was a dark and ominous spaceship hovering so close to the Earth like a large shark swimming silently next to a boat.
Quin turned off the thrust, but they continued to float nearer and nearer to the ominous ship.
“We finally made it,” Quin said breathlessly.
Treena and Raikel stood out of their seat to go stand by Quin. Raikel put a hand on his shoulder. “Yes we did. We’re finally coming Dad. We’re finally here.” There were tears in her eyes.
Gohan watched the three. He wondered how it felt to wander the galaxy trying to find his family. To lose all you have in a second, and try to find just a small fraction of it. It must be tearing these three apart being so close yet not close enough. He knew what it was like not to have a father. He’d known the feeling too long. He promised silently that he’ll do everything to make sure Quin and Raikel won’t have to feel like him much longer.