Author's Note: There won't be any mention of 'Future' Trunks or 'Future' Pan in this chapter. The timeline headings should be enough to help differentiate.
Bulma woke with a start. She heard footsteps inside the house and a pair of voices she was afraid she'd never hear again. She jumped up from her workbench and rushed to the front door. Letting out a happy shriek, she threw herself at her son.
"I'm so glad you're back!" she exclaimed. "I was afraid...."
Her words died off when she noticed the bundle in Pan's arms. Pan and Trunks exchanged a smile, and she handed the baby to Bulma.
"Were you there that long?" Bulma said with wonderment, looking down at the small sleeping face.
"No," Trunks replied. "It's a long story that we'll tell you about some other time. In the meantime, let me introduce you to Trunks Junior."
Bulma laughed. "A boy! And what a beautiful baby he is."
Trunks put an arm around his wife. They watched as Bulma cooed to Trunks Junior, a sense of happiness and peace settling over them both.
"I'm going to miss them," Pan whispered to him.
He didn't have to ask her who she was talking about. "So will I."
"But you know what?" she said, smiling up at him. "I think that we're gonna be alright."
"Yeah, me too," he agreed and then he kissed her.
Pan fidgeted in her seat as she waited for her ride. Goten and Bura were away on their honeymoon and her father was supposed to pick her up. He wasn't usually one to be late and she began to wonder if something bad had happened. She began to worry and was about to fly home when she saw a familiar low-slung sports car drive up to the curb. Her lips twitched with amusement as she saw the license plate.
The door swung open and she climbed in. He smiled at her, but it was tight. She swallowed hard and clutched her knapsack to her chest.
"Where's my dad?" she asked.
"I volunteered to pick you up today," Trunks replied, avoiding her eyes. "I haven't seen you in a while."
"Yeah," she murmured, surprised at his admission as well as the fact that he volunteered.
They hadn't talked about what had happened between them when Trunks had been close to dying. They had been best man and maid of honor at Goten and Bura's wedding, which meant they had to dance at least once. They had ended up dancing the whole night, yet neither one had made the first move to something beyond a dance.
"How was your first day of class?" he asked, forcing himself to sound casual.
"Not too bad," she replied. "How was your first day at work at the new and improved Capsule Corp. tower?"
"Not too bad," he echoed.
They lapsed into silence, the air thick with unspoken words. Trunks' hand ached to reach out and take hers, but he controlled his impulse. He could barely even look at her. Pan sighed loudly, not liking the new turn their relationship had taken.
"You wanna get something to eat?" she inquired, starting a dialogue familiar to both of them.
"Sure," he said, beginning to relax. "What's your pleasure?"
"Don't I always?"
"How about Chez Louis?" she teased lightly.
He glanced at her then and her smile faded at the look in his eyes. She saw him take a deep breath and felt his hand clasp hers. He smiled and tentatively, she smiled back. The grip she had on her knapsack loosened and it dropped to her feet without her notice. All she was aware of were Trunks' blue eyes looking into her own.
"Okay," he answered.