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Author's Note: Trunks and Pan from Timeline B will now be referred to as Future Trunks and Future Pan. At this point, they're really not from the future, but Alternate Trunks and Alternate Pan is too hard to type out.

Chapter Three

Timeline A

Like comets in the sky, the warriors who had gathered at Gohan's house streaked across the sky, following their senses towards the two new arrivals. Marron, Bulma and Chichi were along for the ride, flying in the arms of Tien, Vegeta, and Goten respectively.

"Is it him?" Trunks said with wonder. "Are you sure it's the Trunks that had come here to save Goku?"

"Yes," Vegeta replied sharply. "Your energies are close to identical, but with a little bit of concentration you can detect the differences between you two. So shut your mouth and concentrate!"

"But what about me?" Pan said. "I thought my father died in that timeline."

"Well, I guess he lived long enough to have you," Krilin said with a shrug.

"There it is," Goten said, pointing at a gleaming ship below them. "They landed near my house."

One by one, they touched down, surrounding the time machine as its hatch opened. Future Trunks emerged first, his narrowed eyes taking in their faces. Then, he turned and held out a hand to help the young woman sitting behind him.

"Trunks?" Krilin called out, squinting into the darkness.

"Hi, Krilin!" Future Trunks said with a smile. "Nice to see you again."

"So it is you," Vegeta said, floating upward to look his son in the face. His sharp eyes focused in on Future Pan. "And you've brought a friend."

"This is Pan," Future Trunks introduced.

Standing below them, Trunks and Pan exchanged a look.

"This is strange," Pan murmured to her friend.

"I've heard stories about this Trunks, but they haven't prepared me for the real thing," Trunks said.

Hearing this, Future Trunks glanced down at his counterpart. Their eyes locked and the world seemed to swim. Unconsciously, he reached out to put his hand on Future Pan's shoulder. Below, Pan put a steadying hand on Trunks' arm. He stared up at Future Trunks, his blue eyes hooded.

"What are you doing back here, Trunks?" Yamcha inquired, unaware of what was occurring between the two. "Every time you come here, something bad is usually about to happen."

"Very sensitive, Yamcha," Pan said with a snort of laughter.

Future Trunks glanced at her, his eyes wide. A shiver ran up his spine as he looked into this Pan's face, so familiar to him, yet not. Her hair was shorter and her face carried none of the pain that his wife's did. The other Pan's face shone with a youthful glow, filled with excitement, while his Pan exuded a serene air. She'd had enough excitement in her life.

"Hi," Pan said. "I guess I don't have to introduce myself."

Future Pan smirked. "No, you don't."

"How about we go back to Gohan's house and discuss it there," Chichi suggested, rubbing her arms. "It's chilly out."

"That would be nice," Future Trunks said.

He turned to help Future Pan, but she froze at the sound of her father's name. Her eyes scanned the faces around them and stilled when she recognized him standing next to Videl. The sight of her mother, long dead, brought tears to her eyes. Seeing them, Gohan and Videl stepped forward hesitantly.

"Hello...Pan," Gohan said, holding out a hand.

"Hi," Videl said.

"Hello," Future Pan said, her voice hoarse.

"Let's go," Future Trunks said gently, putting his hand on her arm. "We can talk about this more at Gohan's house."

They took to the skies once again. Flying not too far behind Future Trunks, Trunks stared hard at his back. Discomfort made him silent and moody. He'd heard the stories, heard the admiration in Yamcha's, Krilin's, Gohan's, and even his father's voice when they spoke of Future Trunks. Suddenly, Trunks felt very, very small, and he didn't like it one bit.

The atmosphere in Gohan's house contrasted sharply with the bright streamers and balloons strewn about. The living room was cleared of all remnants of a birthday party, and Future Trunks and Future Pan were made to sit on the couch. Chichi retreated to the kitchen to make tea, Future Pan's eyes following her movements. Her senses seemed to go into overload as she took in the faces around her, faces she never thought she'd see. She took a deep shuddering breath. Videl looked at her worriedly.

"Would you like to lie down?" she asked, putting a hand on Future Pan's knee.


"Go lie down," Future Trunks said, gently but firmly. "You look pale."

"I'll take you up," Pan said. "You can rest in my room."

With a moment's hesitation, she took Future Pan's arm, thinking how strange it was to be holding herself. The others were silent as they went up the stairs, two Pans from two such different times.

In her room, Pan pulled the sheets back and piled her pillows by the headboard. Future Pan sat down and leaned back, closing her eyes. Pan looked at her and a million questions danced on the tip of her tongue, but she ignored them. Her other self looked exhausted, and was probably not up to answering any questions.

"I'll leave you to rest then," Pan said, starting to leave. I'll be back up to check on you in a little while. Just yell if you need anything."

"Thank you."

Pan went back downstairs in time to hear Future Trunks sigh and rub his tired eyes with the back of his hand. She went to sit on the arm of the armchair Trunks was sitting in, more out of habit than anything else.

"So what are you doing here?" Vegeta prompted impatiently. "If you're so happy, why are you here?"

"Dad!" Trunks exclaimed, annoyed. "Would you relax?"

"Boy, are you telling me what to do?"

"Would you both shut up!" Bura yelled. "The guy is trying to tell us why he's here and you won't let him."

Future Trunks' eyebrow arched as he regarded Bura who was a vision of a young Bulma. She nodded at him to continue, Vegeta-style.

"Someone stole my time machine," he blurted out.

They stared at him.

"Then how did you get here?" Gohan questioned.

After taking a deep breath, Future Trunks retold what had occurred in his timeline. The others listened with rapt expressions on their faces, which quickly turned to horror.

"So you're telling me there are two people running around here doing Dende knows what??" Goten exclaimed.

"Pretty much," Future Trunks replied, then he frowned. "Who are you?"

"My younger brother Goten," Gohan replied. "And that young lady with the long hair is Bura, Vegeta and Bulma's daughter."

Future Trunks nodded his acknowledgement at Goten and Bura. They returned his nod with smiles.

"Have you feel any strange energies lately?" Bulma asked the others.

"Other than them, nope," Krilin answered. "Are you sure they're Saiyan or something like that?"

"Logic points to that conclusion," Future Trunks said. "But it's not certain."

"But most likely," Trunks said gravely. He looked at his other self, his brow furrowed thoughtfully. "I think we can make the assumption that in almost all timelines in which a time machine is involved, you and your and my mother--well you get the idea--have control of it. You, er, I would have to be overpowered for them to take the machine and the only beings on the planet who could do that are other Saiyans or androids. There's the remote chance that you, uh, me,er...we were forced to give it up, but I don't think it's likely."

"No, it isn't," Future Trunks agreed.

"So we'll keep our eyes peeled for any super powered beings walking around here," Piccolo said sarcastically.

"They should be easy to spot," Tien snorted. "Just follow the train of carnage and destruction."

"I hope it doesn't get to that point," Gohan said. He stood. "Everyone go home."

They glanced at him with surprise.

"We need a goodnight's rest because tomorrow we are all going to do some searching," he explained.

Suddenly, a bloodcurling scream ripped through the air.


Future Trunks shot up and flew up the stairs towards Future Pan. She met him halfway, her eyes ablaze with rage.

"I feel her," she screamed.

"Who, Pan? Who?" he asked, his heart beating a mile a minute.

The front door opened then and a familiar voice called out, "Where did the party go?"

"It's just #18," Goten said, a confused expression on his face.

Future Pan snarled and would have leapt from the top of the stairs, straight into #18, had Future Trunks not caught her in his arms.

"She's good in this timeline," he said loudly, trying to get through to her.

"She's my wife," Kriling said gently, taking Future Pan's hand so she'd look at him. "We have a daughter, Marron."

Marron stepped up beside Future Trunks. "I'm Marron," she said. "And trust me, my mom isn't like the one you're used to."

Future Pan looked at Marron, a frown on her face, but her hands uncurled and rested on Future Trunks' shoulders. #18 came into her line of sight then, and though Future Pan sucked in a quick breath, she did nothing.

"What's going on?" #18 demanded, her eyes bouncing from one Pan to the other, then from one Trunks to the other.

"Long story," Krilin said, leaping down and pushing her towards the door. He took Marron's hand. "Let's get going."

The door shut behind them. Future Trunks let go of Future Pan and she sat on the step, struggling to still her heart.

"I feel like an ass," she said, trying to laugh.

"No," Gohan said. "We understand. You should get some rest."

"Stay at our house tonight," Bura suggested. "You'll just fall over each other here."

"Thanks, Bura," Pan said dryly.

"Actually," Videl said. "Pan is perfectly welcome to stay here if she wants. I have a feeling she has a lot to talk to us about."

"Yeah," Pan agreed. "You can stay in my room."

"I don't want to kick you out of your own room," Future Pan said reluctantly.

"It's not a problem," Pan assured her.

Future Pan glanced at Future Trunks. He nodded slightly, but she knew he didn't like being apart from her anymore than she liked being apart from him. They hadn't slept in separate beds since before they were married, but she needed to be closer to Gohan and Videl.

"I'll stay then," she said, looking at Gohan. "Thank you."

"Let's go then, Trunks," Bulma said, dragging Future Trunks out the door. "You look like you're about to pass out."

"I'll take care of the time machine," Goten called out as Future Trunks stepped into the car outside. "I'll just hide it in the garage or something."

"Thanks," Future Trunks replied.

Future Pan watched as the car flew off, taking her husband with it. Gohan put a hand on her shoulder.

"Come on," he said. "Pan's getting the room ready for you."

She looked up at her father and a weight that she didn't know had settled on her shoulders was lifted. A small smile on her face, she nodded and followed him up the stairs.

To Interlude One