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Chapter One

Bura smiled amusedly as Goket struggled to make an enormous tower of alphabet blocks. He stuck his little pink tongue out from the effort of it, unaware that his godmother was entertaining herself by watching him. Unfortunately for the little boy, the base was much too small to support the rest of the tower. Nearby, his twin sister Lei brushed her baby doll's hair, lost in her own world as she hummed tunelessly. She did glance over to see what Goket was doing, but didn't make a move to help him. Then, without warning, Goket's tower tipped to one side and fell over, the blocks dropping all over the floor. Her mouth in an 'o' of surprise, Bura waited for the three-year-old to start screaming, but to her surprise, he merely glared at the rubble and began putting it back together. The determination on his face reminded Bura of her father and she laughed.

"Did you Grandpa Vegeta teach you that, Goket?" Bura asked.

"Nope," he replied.

"Are Mommy 'n Daddy comin' home soon?" Lei asked, climbing into Bura's lap, her eyelids drooping sleepily.

"In a little while, Sweetie. Want me to read you a story?"


"You have to get ready for bed first. Go change into your jammies and I'll help you brush your teeth."

"'Kay." Lei scrambled off her lap and went up the stairs.

"That goes for you too, Little Guy," Bura said to Goket.

"Not sleepy yet, Auntie Bra," he said, not even looking at her.

She choked back a laugh at the mispronounciation of her name and warned, "If you don't go to bed now, I'm not going to read you a story later."


His lisping words were interrupted by the doorbell. Bura picked Goket up and went to answer it. Goket let out a happy cry when he saw his great-uncle and godfather Goten standing on the stoop. Bura threw him a look.

"I was just about to put him to bed," she said to him, exasperated.

"Ten bucks says this one didn't want to go to bed just yet," Goten retorted confidently. At Bura's surprised expression, he winked. "I've done some babysitting in my time."

"Unkie Goten!" Goket exclaimed, stretching out his chubby arms.

"Hey, Kiddo," Goten greeted, just as enthusiastically as he took Goket from Bura. "Put Lei to bed while I keep this one busy, Bura. It'll be easier that way."

"Alright. Thanks." She smiled. Sometimes Goten's thoughtfulness surprised her.

When Bura went upstairs, she wasn't surprised to find Lei in the bathroom, her toothbrush in her hand. Bura squeezed some toothpaste on it and watched as Lei scrubbed her teeth carefully. Then, they went to the twins' bedroom and Bura tucked the toddler into bed.

"What do you want to read tonight?" Bura asked, going to the bookcase.

"Cinderewa," Lei replied.

Bura pulled the well-worn copy out and sat down on the edge of the bed. She began to read, but after looking at Lei, knew she wouldn't have to read long.

Meanwhile, Goten and Goket were busy playing a game of flying tag downstairs. It was Goten's way of teaching Goket how to control his powers. Pan and Trunks were at first hesitant about teaching the twins about their special strengths, but Goten managed to convince them by arguing that it was necessary for the twins to learn control rather than be ignorant of their powers because there was no escaping them. Goten found fun and new ways to teach the young Saiya-jins. Of course, these games were only supposed to be played outside, but Goten decided that catching falling objects before they hit the ground would be good practice for himself.

"Come on, Goket," he coaxed. "Come get me."

Eyes narrowing, Goket flew straight for him. Laughing, Goten flew away and the chase began. They went in and out of rooms, over, under, and around furniture. Goten made some good catches at the same time.

Upstairs, Bura tucked the covers around Lei and turned off the light. She floated out of the room, not wanting her footsteps to wake the sleeping child up. She touched down in the hallway and made her way down the stairs only to be knocked off her feet by a fast moving object. She didn't even have time to scream before the wind was knocked out of her. A pair of wide eyes stared down at her and she slowly became aware that Goten was lying on top of her.

"Oh crap...Sorry, Bura," Goten gasped, surprised as she. "I was watching Goket."

"Uh-oh," Goket said, somewhere behind Goten.

"What...?" Goten started, but his question was cut off by a loud crash.

In unison, he and Bura looked towards the sound and saw that a picture frame that had been hanging on the wall nearby had fallen. It had fallen on its face and its glass cover had shattered.

"Uh-oh," Bura echoed.

Just then, a key was slid into the lock on the front door, signaling Trunks' and Pan's return. Goket flew up the stairs without hesitation. Goten pushed himself off Bura, gathered up the broken glass in one hand, hung the frame back up, and made for the back door. Bura bolted up and threw herself on the couch in front of the TV.

"Bura, we're home," Pan announced.

"I'm in here!" Bura called back.

Dressed in evening finery and looking like a picture perfect couple, Trunks and Pan entered the living room, their expressions tired, but satisfied.

"How was the Capsule Corp. annual banquet?" Bura asked.

"The usual," Pan replied.

"You're lucky you don't have to be there, Bura. I couldn't wait to get out of there," Trunks added, loosening his tie. "But it was nice to go out for a while."

"Yes, it was," Pan agreed, smiling up at him before turning back to Bura. "How were the twins? Not too much trouble, I hope."

"Little Angels as usual."

"You probably spent the whole time doing your nails, right, Bura?" Trunks teased.

Bura's lips thinned. "No. Is that all you think I do?"

He raised an eyebrow. "What else do you do? I'm sure you're not out there robbing from the rich and giving to the poor."

Before Bura could reply, Pan put a hand up. "Enough. Thanks for babysitting, Bura. We appreciate it."

"Yeah, we do," Trunks said, extending the olive branch.

Bura smiled. "No problem." She got up and reached for her coat. "I'll head out now, then."

"Hot date tonight?" Pan asked.

Bura tensed. "No. Goodnight, Guys."

When the door closed behind her, Pan turned to Trunks, amused. "I wonder where Goten went?"

Trunks chuckled. "I don't know what they were thinking, trying to cover up their little mishap. I could have felt Goket's energy from a mile away, and I would have thought Goten would be smart enough to know we could sense him powered up or not."

"Well, I doubt Uncle Goten was thinking about that. He just wanted to make a quick getaway," Pan said as she removed the picture frame from the wall.

Trunks put an arm around her. "That's true."

They walked up the stairs and paused at the twins' room to kiss them goodnight before heading into their own room. Trunks sat on the bed as Pan began undressing. He flopped back onto the pillows, closing his eyes.

"Tough day at work?" she asked, glancing at him.

"Always," he answered wearily. "I wish I had more time to spend on my inventions. Mom lucked out. She can spend the whole day at her workbench with nothing to worry about."

She went to him, pressing a kiss to his cheek. "You can resign, you know. Your inventions are incredible and you should be able to spend more time on them."

"And then what?" he said frustratedly. "It takes a while to perfect something and we need the income that's coming in, Pan. You and I both know that whoever takes Capsule Corp. will not be in the family and he or she will destroy it. We get buy-out offers from other companies every day."

She sighed. "I know. I just hate to see you so unhappy."

He pulled her down into his arms. "I'm not unhappy. I have you and the kids. It's enough to counterbalance the rigors of being the president of a company. I bet my dad never had to go through this kind of thing on Planet Vegeta."

"I don't know. He was royalty."

Trunks laughed bitterly. "But I bet Saiya-jins never sat around behind a desk like I do."

"I doubt it. And that's why you have me as a sparring partner," Pan said. "We'll take it outside first thing tomorrow, alright? You'll feel better once you release all that stress."

He grinned at her wickedly. "I can think of another way to relieve stress."

As their lips met, the real world spun away and their troubles were forgotten...but only momentarily.

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