Across Time: Book One

If you're at all familiar with this fanfic, you know that I began it sometime last year and finished up to book three, but then decided to revise it. I know it's been almost forever, but I am finished up to chapter 5. My zip drive committed suicide (in the middle of typing up an essay, no less) and I've been a little paranoid about it happening again. Since all my fanfics are on zip disk, it explains why I haven't been writing anything for almost four months.

Warnings: Violence, profanity, lemon, accidental OOC (in Goku's case it's always on purpose).

Notes: This is a Dragon Ball fanfic despite the fact that it may not seem like one most of the time. It has six books (because I previously made the mistake of setting an exact number -_-;) and will take me a while to finish. Oh, and did you notice that I continuously forget that Saiya-jin have tails in the old version? I'm not used to writing them with that appendage still attached and I tossed it into the story a lot as an afterthought. If you've read it before, you might want to read it again. I've changed some important parts of the story and added a lot more.

Names: I've gotten into the habit of writing everyone's names the Japanese way (except for Goku and Vegeta because they're in practically everything I write and it's hard to change). Just a little heads up to everyone.

Posting Note: This is pre-beta'ed since I lost my editor. I've added or removed some things to this version and generally cleaned up my prose.

To The Reviewers (and future reviewers): Thank you. I know that I don't say it very often (if ever) but I do appreciate all of your comments. You keep me motivated.

Summary: Vegeta discovers several Saiya-jin books that chronicle the lives of two very familiar people.

*** = scene change, ~*~ = time period change

Across Time
Book One

Chapter 1 [Revision #1: 02/7/04 | Revision #2: 08/06/04]

The days had been calm and filled with idle pleasure after the defeat of Majin Buu. It was as if the other evil beings of the universe had caught wind of his demise and chose to stay away from Chikyuu-sei in self-preservation. This peaceful time was far from a hardship, however. At least, it was for most people. Goku and Vegeta were really the only two affected by the idleness of life. They turned to each other for new challenges and activities that alleviated their boredom and, as a result, grew close.

To a degree, they were best-friends. The two of them could spar all day without pause or sit for hours in silence watching the stars twinkle above. Words were never needed to express how they felt.

It was no surprise to either of them that they eventually fell in love.

Of course, this was beyond the understanding of majority of Goku's friends and family. They believed they still had good reason to hate the Saiya-jin prince who'd come to Chikyuu-sei to use their dragonballs for a selfish reason. Hatred clings like black tar long after the true reason fades from memory. It becomes habitual to hate and takes far too much energy to see things from another point of view. Goku eventually abandoned his crusade to change their minds about Vegeta and retreated to a nice home in Eastern Capital with his lover. They kept to themselves as much as possible, Goku fuming inwardly and Vegeta ignoring the problem's existence, until one day a peacemaker approached their abode to extend a humble apology -- and a very late housewarming gift.

Goku embraced his eldest son and invited him in for tea.

Now, eight years later, just about everyone had come around and realized that Vegeta wasn't as bad as they'd thought. He wasn't as good as Goku wanted them to believe -- that was something only the tall Saiya-jin was privileged enough to witness -- but neither was he the embodiment of evil.

Vegeta was, to put it frankly, bored. Goku had gone grocery shopping forty-five minutes ago; he had bad memories when it came to places like that. He opted to stay home and was regretting the decision within ten minutes.

The attic of their home had become, like the attics of many homes, a storage area for all manner of things. Even a portion of Gohan and Videl's junk had found its way over. There were boxes stacked as high as they would go in on corner, behind old dusty furniture that Vegeta swore he would someday restore to former glory, if only to have something to do. He went upstairs with the intention of maybe sorting some of their things into "keep" and "discard" piles and found himself instead remembering a time long passed.

A cloud of gray dust rose upward as the box labeled "Touch this and die" was opened, causing Vegeta to sneeze several times in quick succession. It had been found shoved behind a box of Pan's old baby clothes. Upon seeing the warning written on a flap in black marker, he knew that he'd been the one to pack the box.

How long had it been since he'd last viewed its contents? Ten years? Twenty? No, it had been twenty-four years, each of them filled with experiences that had forever changed him.

The original reason for coming up to the attic escaping him, Vegeta hefted the box in his arms and headed back downstairs. Maybe it was time to deal with some of the skeletons in his closet.

"Tadaima, 'geta," Goku called as he opened the front door. One arm was cradled around a paper bag while three more sat waiting on the porch. "I hope you didn't get too bored here by yourself." He looked around and smiled. "Well, the house is still standing at any rate."

A dust and grime covered being descended from upstairs as he transported the food to the kitchen. He set the box down on the glass-topped coffee table, inadvertently knocking the remote control as well as a few magazines to the floor. Hearing noise in the living room, Goku poked his head out to check and winced at sight of lazily floating dust mites.

"I just cleaned that room yesterday!"

Vegeta ran his arm across his eyes, effectively cutting a swathe through the grime coating his face, and smirked. "It's just dust, Kakarotto." He stared for one moment at the short lean-muscled Saiya-jin before shaking his head and returning to his previous task.

"What took you so long?" he asked as he wandered into the other room with the pretense of getting a glass of water. He wanted to look at Goku and re-memorize the face and form of the man that had come to mean more to him than life itself. Vegeta loved every inch of him from the top of his unruly raven hair that felt like silk between his fingers to the bottoms of feet that were incredibly ticklish and often the target of playful assault. He allowed the love and affection to fill him until he thought he might burst. Goku put away the groceries while Vegeta leaned against the counter and stared covertly.

He groaned with remembered irritation. "You should have seen the lines, Vegeta! They had a sale so big that there were three times as many people as there usually are." Goku put the last thing away and filled a glass of his own. "Next time I'm shopping at three a.m. So, what's in the box?"

The faint ghost of a smile that touched his lips faded as he thought of the box's contents. "Things I saved from my past life." His words caused the glass to halt millimeters from Goku's mouth.

"You've had it up there all this time?" he asked. "Can I see what's inside?"

"I don't care." He shrugged with feigned nonchalance but his stomach was churning furiously. Setting his glass in the sink, Vegeta went back into the living room. "There are only remnants of a past I would rather forget in that box."

Cradled within the cardboard was a familiar royal blue training suit that had more rips and tears than material. Goku held it in his hands for a moment before putting it aside, remembering when they first met. Beneath it were several books with leather covers, golden characters written neatly along their spines. He flipped through one of them carefully and saw handwritten words that he was unable to read on the pages inside. A blue blanket with an anchor-like embroidered symbol in one corner, a small metal doorplate with faded lettering, and a tiny silver mirror were what remained.

Goku pulled Vegeta down to sit beside him on the soft cream-colored leather sofa. "I bet every single one of these has a story. I already know about the suit, but will you tell me about the others?"

Suddenly, he had the desire to speak of his past. Vegeta had closely guarded it with everything he possessed, afraid to share lest he lose a part of himself in the process. It was easy to forget when he was the only one still alive who knew the truth.

But he loved Goku and knew that opening up his past to him would better the other Saiya-jin's understanding of who he was and where he'd come from. A strange emotion love was. It softened his demeanor and loosened his tongue so that he sometimes babbled like an idiot, but he would not trade it for any material possession in the universe.

He picked up the circular silver hand mirror that still shone with immaculate beauty, its narrow handle inlaid with an emerald about the size of marble. A fanciful twisting pattern that reminded Goku of grape vines covered the back. It was a delicate item, something more likely to belong to a wealthy noblewoman than a battle-hardened Saiya-jin warrior, yet it was in Vegeta's possession and Goku couldn't wait to hear the tale.

It was slow in coming. He wanted to get the words right so that his mate could understand perfectly and see things as he saw them. "I was a teenager," Vegeta began uncertainly at first, his voice gaining surety as he went on. "Furiza had given the elite soldiers leave for a rare evening to go out and release pent-up emotions on a planet called Picar. If there was something he feared more than a Super Saiya-jin, it was mutiny."


Furiza, the Changeling who sought to dominate the universe, held considerable sway over the monarchical government of Picar and was allowed to visit whenever he wished. He took great pleasure in making surprise visits that shook the very foundation of their society.

The giant disc-shaped ship rested gingerly in the white sand outside the capital city's limits. Majority of the planet was covered in vast desert that appeared lifeless at first glance but, after a deeper look, it was easy to see that it teemed with life. Picardians were desert-bred people and throve in the planet's unusually dry conditions. Visitors generally disliked everything about Picar -- including its playful and carefree inhabitants.

A quarter-moon hung very large in the sky and bathed everything in a pale white glow.

"Prince Vegeta, let us go with you," Nappa said while wiping the sweat that had slid down into his face from the collected puddle atop his bald head. Raditzu stood beside him, silent and indifferent. "This God-forsaken planet is full of people who'd hurt you."

"If Vegeta still existed this scum wouldn't even dare to think about it." Vegeta's mind imagined a life in which he was thought of as a god. In ancient Saiya-jin culture, kings had been treated exactly as such. He spared a moment to curse the alien who'd stolen just about everything of value from him, from rudely taking a dream of domination that would never be.

"At least let Raditzu stay with you."

"No!" he snarled. Without another word, he stalked off toward where the numbers on the scouter over his right eye indicated life. It wasn't particularly strong life, but still life nonetheless.

The streets were crafted of white stone that blended almost seamlessly with the color of the desert sand. The buildings were of the same color but there were small accents here and there that marked particular buildings and homes. If anyone were to try and invade, they would have a hard time finding visible signs of civilization. Vegeta's eyes stung and watered from a constantly drifting haze of grit stirred up by the wind and his throat felt sore from the grains lodged in it. It truly was a God-forsaken planet.

Picardians were a strange bunch. They didn't share his mammalian status but were more of a humanoid lizard type -- like Furiza. Fortunately that was where similarity ended or he would not have been able to conduct business with any of them. Their scales -- which were all varying shades of beige -- covered the entirety of visible skin except their faces and the palms of their hands. They wore clothes like most other races: loose garments of smooth cloth that covered from neck to knee, cinched at the waist with sashes. On their feet were sandals held on by thin rope. He assumed that the soles of their feet were scaleless as well but didn't care enough about the subject to question one of them.

Very few people lingered on the streets but those that did remain watched him with hostile eyes from shadowed doorways and beneath scrawny-looking trees. He walked on unafraid, daring someone to do or say something that he didn't like. The urge to fight was welling within him, filling his body to capacity until he felt as if it would spill over and force him into an uncontrollable frenzy. If there was anything he hated more than his lord, it was losing control of himself.

There was a short building pressed on both sides by much taller establishments, half-hidden at the end of a long, narrow alley. Whenever he visited Picar he made sure to patronize the Ignaadar; it was the only place in the city that served good alcohol. The rest never seemed to grasp that fine liquor burned like Hell going down and could fell a good-sized warrior with just a few glasses.

All conversation within the dimly-lit interior halted as the patrons sized up Vegeta. He completely dismissed them from his mind with one look and made his way over to the bar. "Firewhisky¹," he told the barkeep. "Make it quick and make it double."

"You have no idea what you're getting yourself into," a woman on his left said. He spared her a glance then ignored her. "Off-planets can't handle a single let alone a double."

Vegeta didn't respond for a moment. He turned the glass he'd recently received in his hand, watching the way the overhead lighting refracted through the burgundy-amber liquid. "What I do is my business," he finally said, turning slightly to regard her. The woman was willowy like most Picardians, tan scales covered the sides of her face, and her eyes were a light pink. The only evidence of her gender was the series of small ridges running down the center of her head to disappear into the collar of her robe. Her wide mouth parted in what seemed to be a smile. It was not returned.

She frowned at him, eyes darkening to a rose color. "It was just a friendly warning. Go ahead and burn away all the lining in your stomach. I don't care." With a smirk he tossed back the glass and swallowed it all without pause. Her eyes widened in disbelief when he didn't fall from his stool and roll around on the sticky floor in agony.

"Don't presume things about me," he said coldly as he set the empty glass down onto the bar. "It makes me angry."

"I'm M'nora," she offered in apology. "What's your name?"

"Prince Vegeta." He pulled his shoulders back and held his head high in a way befitting someone of royal status. "Of Planet Vegeta." She stared at him blankly, clearly unknowing that Vegeta even used to exist. He cursed Furiza with all the malevolence he could muster for denying him his birthright.

M'nora wouldn't shut up even after he'd taken to tuning her out. He had to give her points for tenacity however, and soon she had him grudgingly contributing his own words. A few hours passed and, before he knew it, M'nora was excusing herself.

"It's been... interesting," she smiled, "but I should be going. The next time you're on Picar look me up."

"Why would I do that?" he asked but his voice lacked its usual distinctive chill. She knew as well as he that his words meant nothing.

"See ya, Vegeta." M'nora briefly gripped his forearm before slipping out of the bar.

He had just finished his most recent glass when he realized that she hadn't told him how to look her up. Setting it down, he exited through the door just as a sharp scream filled the night. The voice was familiar -- though he figured that he would have run towards the sound regardless -- and was on the scene just as a moving shadow lowered itself over a struggling M'nora. Her robe was torn from one shoulder and her small fists beat relentlessly at her captor's back. In an instant Vegeta was there pulling the man away and cracking his head sharply against a nearby wall.

"What the fuck is wrong with you?" he roared before he could stop himself. "Do you have nothing better to do than rape defenseless women?" With every word the man's head came into contact with the wall until blood ran freely down his face and he slumped in Vegeta's hands, unconscious. M'nora was there grasping Vegeta's hands and urging him to release her would-be rapist.

"Let him go, Vegeta. He didn't do anything other than give me a good scare."

"He would have!" If anything, his grip tightened.

She shuddered at the thought and met his eyes. "If you do anything more then you'd be just as bad as he is."

Against his better judgment, he finally opened his hands and allowed the abused form to tumble to the ground. With a glance, he assessed M'nora's well-being and deemed her well. "You should get home. Do you want an escort?"

"It's okay. He caught me by surprise but I can handle the next one." Her cheeks colored slightly. "To be honest, I'm a little embarrassed that I was taken down so quickly."

"Happens to us all," he muttered. "Look, I have to get back." 'Or I won't be able to hold myself back from killing the bastard any longer.' He started to leave the alley when M'nora's hand caught his arm again.

Pink eyes shiny with unshed tears dissolved the sharp words on his tongue. "Thank you, Vegeta. I want you to have something to remember me by, just in case our paths never cross again." From the small pack at her waist she produced a small mirror whose surface reflected the light of the moon. "My grandmother gave this to me long ago with the instruction to pass it on to someone special." She pressed it into his palm and closed his fingers around it so that he had no choice but to accept it. "Whenever you think you've lost yourself, look into it and it will help you remember."

"Good bye, Vegeta," she whispered. After placing a small kiss onto his cheek, M'nora was gone.


"This was my very first gift," Vegeta said, his eyes unfocused as he remembered. "I could never forget her."

"Have you ever gone back?" Goku asked. He was very happy that at least one person had been kind to his love just because they'd wanted to be. A little kindness often went a long way.

He sighed heavily. "After I found this stuff again I went up into space. Nothing is left of Picar except chunks of rock and clouds of dust. That seems to be the story of my life, Kakarotto. Missed chances; wasted lives."

The response was immediate. "Iie, Vegeta. Don't think that way." He was worried that the memories would send the other Saiya-jin into one of his all-too-frequent brooding moods. As of late, the former prince was in one more often than not. "Tell me about the doorplate."

"There isn't really anything to tell. It used to be on the door of the cabin Furiza gave me the day I turned sixteen. I had been sharing with Nappa and Raditzu, confined to a too-small space like animals in a cage." His face twisted into one of disgust. "They were both Neanderthals who stayed as far away from soap and water as they could get and never picked up their things. Saiya-jin may be bloodthirsty warriors, but we aren't uncivilized apes. At least, most of us aren't. I kept it because it was the first time I truly tasted freedom -- however limited it was."

Goku opened his mouth but shut it when Vegeta glared at him. "I'm not going to ask," he said with a smile.

"Kakarotto..." he warned.

"Seriously! I'm not! Even though I really, really want to know."

Vegeta saw his reputation as a hardened warrior going straight down the drain. He carefully schooled his face into one of impassiveness and said, "It was given to me as a child, Kakarotto. My baby blanket."

"I knew it!" Goku crowed triumphantly.

¹ this came from Harry Potter. I was struggling to come up with something that sounded dangerous and it popped into my head.