Barracks
by Chayron     More by this Writer
Due to a curious mix-up Goten is taken into an officer training school. While trying to understand what is happening, he stumbles into a series of strange events, and the dots finally start connecting.
Graphic Violence



Chapter 01
I dedicate this piece of fan fiction to Anzia, to the friend who has been with me during all these long years. Thank you for your support, ideas and love.

A/N 1: Goten is seventeen, and Trunks is eighteen years old (they will get older with time).
A/N 2: This fic is completely independent of my other fics.
A/N 3: Started: 10 2006
A/N 4: There will be some specific imaginary words in this fic. Officer ranks at Hataro Officer Training School from the highest to the lowest:
1. Taisa
2. Shaii
3. Shyu
4. Captain Laureus Tanko
5. Drill sergeant
6. First-in-command
7. Second-in-command
8. Savar anyone attending any officer training school

A/N 5: The Saiyan education:
0. Preparatory school (pupils 8-13 years old)
1. Paramilitary school (pupils 14-18). From there to --> boot camps (drafts/grunts) or:
2. Officer training school (savars 18-20). From there to --> military posts or:
3. Commissioned Officer Academy (ranks)

A/N 6: for non-native speakers: AWOL means absent without leave.

oOO-oOo-OOo


Goten’s sleepy head jerked up as someone’s boot gave a painful kick to his thigh. He blinked his blurry eyes at the space in front of him, but whoever had kicked him had already walked away. Goten looked around. People were hustling around him, stuffing their belongings back into their bags and sacks. Goten felt that the train was slowing down. That must be the reason for the bruise forming on his thigh – just a friendly tap to tell him to get ready.

They had been traveling for four days on a train. The car was stuffed. There was hardly a place to put one’s foot. The stench and heat were unbearable, several small vents on the sides of the walls hardly helping the situation. Sweaty, overheated and tired bodies shouldered and elbowed each other in the mass to move from one point in the car to another.

During sleep-hours the car usually turned into one big bed with blankets strewn about where everyone intermingled. Arms, legs and tails got entangled, the owners not even bothering to figure out which belonged to whom as there simply was no space to sleep otherwise.

Goten had always been a light sleeper, and the first three days were a nightmare to him. On the fourth day after not getting any sleep, his body had just shut down on its own, finally letting him rest without hearing all that snoring, talking, or walking; the door opening and closing each time somebody went to the toilets; and the unceasing sound of the train hitting the railroad trusses.

Yawning and shaking his head to clear it, Goten stood up and started collecting his belongings, which included his blanket, a book, a deck of cards and a bottle of water. Despite that he hadn’t expected to, he had found several men to play cards with. Even though he was the only third-class on the train – to say nothing of him being the youngest of all those present -, it didn’t really seem like he was being pushed around or sneered at. Actually, if he thought about it, he was singled out on the first day, as some of the men from his previous paramilitary school were among the crowd and knew who he was. But after a day of nonstop jolting on the rails, everybody soon lost interest in him. It was just too hot to care.

The brakes hit, and the curses were heard as the train stopped none too gently. The men grabbed blindly at whatever was the closest to them to keep themselves on their feet. Goten’s back hit the metallic floor as a bundle of men in front of him didn’t manage to keep their balance. Goten groaned as he was sandwiched between their bodies and the floor, the stuff in his rucksack digging into his back painfully.

The door finally opened, but instead of dashing into the fresh and brisk air, the men at the front hung near the entrance blinking until their eyes got used to the direct sunrays. Then they began to fall to the ground and roll down the trestle as the men from behind forced their way through. For a moment the car and its surroundings turned to chaos.

“Align! Get your asses moving! You imbeciles, stop lying around on the ground! What did I tell you?! -Align, damn sissies!”

The hits and kicks and curses followed and in two minutes all second-classes were drawn next to the car. The captain cast a look inside the car.

“You! What the hell are you doing in the car?! Hey!”

As the man lying on the floor of the car didn’t move, the captain sent the first-in-command to check that he wasn’t injured or dead.

“I can bet he’s only sleeping,” Ario snickered into his friend’s ear. “I have been trying to wake him up for ten minutes. You won’t believe the things the third-class gets himself into… He-”

“Silence in the rows!” the captain yelled.

Ario shut his mouth with a click and raised his head to look forward at nothing.

“You!” the first-in-command kicked Goten in the side. “The fucker’s just sleeping!” he shouted from the car to the captain in disbelief.

“Told you,” Ario snickered.

Goten rubbed his side unhappily. He opened his eyes just in time to see a heavy boot smash into his head, then grabbed his bleeding nose, cursing in pain. He jumped to his feet, intending to teach his attacker a lesson but his eye caught several shiny pieces on the black uniform of the man in front of him. A first-in-command.

Goten changed gears quickly and saluted. “Sir!”

“Into the row, you worthless piece of trash!” the first-in-command bellowed. As Goten rushed past him, he tried to kick the boy on his behind but missed. At least the kid was fast.

“The school is fifty kilometers away,” said the captain before hopping into the jeep with his first-in-command who started the car and began driving.

The second-classes in the row met each others’ eyes then, with all their belongings, began running after the jeep.

Ten kilometers later, Goten was trotting at the very end of the band, his sides already marked by the shoves he had gotten after he had started wobbling and bumped into several teammates. The blood had finally stopped running from his nose, but he was hardly staying on his feet. His head throbbed and his vision was blurring from time to time.

Goten started seriously contemplating dropping somewhere on the roadside, vomiting, then having a decent sleep; then, in the morning, trailing up after the party. He knew he would probably not survive going AWOL, but he was positive that he was going to drop dead on the spot anyway. A ki blast in the head would be less painful.

“Just a little bit more,” Ario sidled up to Goten. “I really doubt the fuckers will make us run all fifty damn kilometers…”

Goten cast a hazy look at the second-class. Ario was one of those rare second-classes who knew him from paramilitary school but didn’t seem to mind having him tag along to officer training school. It was unheard off that a third-class would attend an officer training school and, in addition, Goten was a year younger than the rest of them. As a result, he was met with derisive glares and sharp tongues wherever he went.

Actually, Goten himself wondered about the whole situation. He had almost fainted when he got the call-up papers. He had been completely positive that after finishing the paramilitary school he'd been attending, he would go to some boot-camp like all the other third-classes. For him to be ordered to one of the best officer training schools on Vegeta-sei was akin to a death sentence.

Holding the document in his trembling fingers, he had read it three times and decided that it must be a mistake. There was no way it had been addressed to him, even if Goten Bardock’s name was clearly written on the envelope.

He had dialed the phone number that had been provided on the papers for those who needed further information. He had gotten an affirmative answer, that yes, Goten Bardock was indeed expected to present himself to Hataro Officer Training School. He had also been informed that those who disobeyed the order would be arrested and punished with death.

After he had hung up the phone, he stood for several minutes, doing nothing except staring at the wall. There really had to be some mistake. He could not be going there; not there to the place where his brother had died.

With Gohan it had been the same. Despite being only a third-class, he had been sent to one of the officer training schools. He never came back. There had been some accident during training. The body had been sent back, but the circumstances had never been cleared.

But an order was an order, so Goten reported. Then, together with over fifty other pupils who had graduated from the same paramilitary school as him, and with the best marks, he was almost literally freighted into the train.

And now, even as he was running after the second-classes, he still thought that it must be some mistake that he’d been sent here. It had been a horrible bureaucratic mistake when Gohan got sent, and now the same was happening to him. However, he had never been one to believe in coincidences.

Ario’s hand stopped Goten before he could smash into the man who had been running in front of him. Because of his blurred vision and the fact that he had to concentrate so hard not to pass out, Goten hadn’t noticed that they had slowed down and soon stopped completely.

The roar of an engine soon reached their ears and after several minutes the transport showed up from behind a nearby hill. The truck approached them and the driver stopped. He was supposed to collect the newly enlisted savars from the train station, but was not surprised to find them twelve kilometers away in the wrong direction. The captain always did that to newbies.

Relieved, the men climbed into the truck. Goten squeezed himself into a corner and let himself black out. He woke up only after somebody had punched him on the shoulder.

Shielding his eyes from the bright sun, Goten stumbled out of the truck. After several kicks to his shins, he, together with the other men, aligned next to it. With his eyes closed, he was only vaguely aware of the buzz of the captain’s loud voice then five minutes of the second-in-command humming. He heard nothing, but at least had a half-hour of rest.

Confused, Goten looked around after a sudden silence settled around him. Everyone appeared to be dismissed and walking in all directions possible. Goten caught up with Ario, who, with several more newly enlisted savars, was walking the opposite way of the majority of them.

“Where are we going?” Goten asked, shifting his heavy backpack to get it more comfortably situated on his back.

“I’m going to get my hair cut first,” Ario said, not stopping. “The bastard said that we already have barracks assigned, so there’s no point in running over there straightaway. Later I’m going to get blankets, uniforms and stuff.” He noticed Goten’s gaze shift from one group of savars to the other. “I suppose that some went to the toilets and the other half went to get something to eat in the canteen,” Ario commented before Goten could ask. “You should wash that face of yours to get the blood off and go to a doc here. I think that kick to your head was pretty harsh.”

“I think I’ll go to the barber’s first,” Goten decided. He thought he knew what the doctor would say anyway, and he doubted that he would make it to the barber’s after he dropped into his bunk. He would be out until tomorrow.

“When and where do we gather tomorrow?” Goten asked.

“The sirens will go off at five. We assemble in front of the main building, the one near the flag. They'll probably check the lists to see if everyone has arrived as ordered. Then we'll be given our schedules and tortured until breakfast. Breakfast is at seven. Didn’t you hear anything that pig said?”

“Not really,” Goten shook his head. He regretted it as his head protested with an intense pang of shooting pain.

“You’d better not to be late. He already caught you sleeping on the train,” Ario warned.

Gotten nodded. The last thing he needed was to get in trouble on the very first day of his service.

After five minutes they entered the barber’s. Goten groaned inwardly at the rows that were flooding the building. Another train must have arrived just a fraction earlier than his. He leaned on the wall near the entrance wondering whether he should go get his uniform first but then decided that it would be the same there.

In half an hour Goten was finally seated, a piece of some cloth was hastily wrapped around him, and his hair was gone in seconds. Patting his bald head and marveling at the feeling, Goten turned to look at the guy on his right who was crying after having his long mane cut. Goten turned to the left side where Ario seemed to be quite content with his shiny head and was looking at himself in a mirror grinning.

Goten left his seat and went to look for a doctor. He drifted around the enormous campus of the school for about half an hour until he saw a huge sign with a red droplet on one of the buildings. The med bay.

He could have asked someone to show him the way but most of the men he had passed had given him unfriendly looks. He had also seen several elites. Goten was glad that there was hardly anyone who knew his background here and that the second and third classes were differentiated only by their birth line and power level. He was sure that otherwise he wouldn’t have avoided trouble so easily. But on the other hand, he knew that the news of his status would quickly be spread by the second-classes who had arrived together with him.

Elites were the strongest and thus had become the richest of the three classes in Saiyan society. They had a white tail tip that was usually clearly shown off to boast their high position to everyone around them. Most elites looked down on the lower classes and rarely interacted with them unless it was to give orders. The third class was considered the lowest and seen merely as a labor force, and most of elites detested it. The second class stood in between the two and mostly handled bureaucratic issues.

Goten pushed the door open and entered a hall then turned to the reception area, where one old female and a young male were drinking tea and chatting. Goten sniffed the air and concluded that it was black tea. He walked over to the window and stated his problem.

The female looked him up and down and inspected his face where it was caked with blood. “It’s nothing serious. Come back tomorrow evening after we have gotten the registers of newly enlisted savars,” she said before shutting the pane in his face. She turned back to continue her conversation with the young assistant.

Goten shifted from one foot to another but as he was simply ignored, he went back to the door. Already outside he decided he had to try for supplies. He should simply have followed Ario to wherever the second-class had gone. Ario didn’t seem to mind having him around. But Goten didn’t really want that – he knew he might put the second-class in harm's way by hanging around him. However, other Saiyans mostly avoided Ario. He was built a bit more massively and was heavier than most Saiyans, which automatically made others careful with their words and behavior in his presence.

He didn’t know Ario well. They were from the same paramilitary school, but Ario was from a different group and class, and he had only seen the other Saiyan from afar. He had heard things, though. Ario had a cheerful and mild character but turned into a beast when annoyed. There were several rumored incidents concerning Ario’s fuck buddy, but after Ario had cracked a few skulls open, everybody kept their distance from both of them.

Goten wandered around the base for fifteen minutes until he saw some savars carrying blankets, boots, uniforms and other stuff from one of the buildings.

Goten entered the building and joined the queue that extended as far ahead of him as he could see. The lone was moving fast but it was still much slower than Goten would have liked. After forty minutes he finally reached the distribution point. He stated his name and sizes.

“Two uniform sets, size L. Boots 40, underwear. Two blankets, one pillow and linen!” the quartermaster shouted in the direction of the repository that was behind him.

“Hell, you look even younger with your head shaved.”

Goten turned his head to see Ario’s friend busying himself with supplies, rifling through the items stacked on huge shelves and filling out the order.

“Here,” the rather short man put the huge pile onto the table in front of Goten. “Just take it and go. Don’t start rummaging through it now, or we both will be had,” he leaned to whisper into Goten’s ear. He straightened, winked at the younger man and ran off to fulfill another order.

Goten scooped the bundle into his arms and, hardly able to see over the high pile, found his way out of the building. Trying to balance the stuff he had on his arms and shoulders and not to drop anything was quite hard, and, in addition to that, Goten realized that he didn’t know which barracks were his. He should have listened to that captain’s prattle after all.

After breaking into a sweat and starting to pant under his burdensome load, Goten simply walked over to one of second-classes he found on his way and asked how he could find out to which barracks he was assigned. He was sent to one of the buildings that stood in the middle of the base.

Something was off with the smell, Goten decided as soon as he had stepped through the door. After walking several meters and taking a corner to his right, he stopped dead in his tracks at the sight of no less than ten half-naked females in the hall. The bastard had sent him to the women's barracks!

“My bad,” Goten muttered, quickly retreating.

“Get him!” someone behind Goten shouted, and he heard the sound of feet approaching quickly.

Goten ran. He was not sure why they were after him but his best guess was that they thought he was some kind of pervert. Although how they had come to that conclusion… He cut the corner, the door was nearing fast, but not fast enough, and he was tackled before he reached it. The impact with the floor wasn’t painful at all because he landed face first into the bundle of clothes he had been carrying.

Goten shouted in pain as his tail was grabbed and unwound from his waist. It was tugged up, and he quickly followed the lead, standing up and leaving his stuff scattered all around on the floor.

“Look at what we have here,” said the elite female who had him by his tail. “I think you are searching for showers in the wrong building…” She snickered, yanking on Goten’s tail and earning another pain-filled cry. Then she dragged him back into the hall where they were met with enthusiastic shouts.

“Let me go!” Goten struggled. He yelped as he was struck. His vision went hazy again. Unable to stand the pain after his tail was squeezed again, he fell to his knees.

“I don’t think this straying cutie is in a position to make any requests, is he?” the elite mocked, earning several laughs from her friends. “Let’s give him some good experience just like he was looking for!”

Blows and kicks showered Goten’s body. At first Goten tried to defend himself but each tug at his tail would send him to the floor and leave him weak as a kitten and shouting in pain. In the end he just shielded his head and curled into a ball, hoping they would get bored and leave him alone.

“What the fuck are you doing, bitches?!”

The hall suddenly went silent. Goten’s tail slipped from its capturer’s grasp and fell limply to the ground, next to the unconscious and half-naked body.

“Sir!” the females saluted.

“Get the docs here! Now!” the shaii bellowed. “You,” he stabbed his finger in the direction of the female with yellow underwear, “get me a sheet of paper and a pen! You,” he kicked the nearest one who stood next to him, “gather his stuff and put it next to him!”

The shaii looked at the boy’s things as they were brought to his side. His sharp eye noticed that there were two blankets too many and the boots were those of better quality that were usually given to elites. The boy had someone to look out for him at the quartermaster’s, it seemed. Any other time he would have protested or punished the boy and the one who had helped him, but it seemed the boy had already gotten punished more than enough.

The shaii grabbed the notebook and the pen he was presented with by a panting female who had just come back. “Align, scum!” he yelled. “Name, surname, rank and number!” he shouted at the first female in the line. He put everything down. “You all get the latrine and kitchen duty for half a year! And if I hear of what happened here being spread beyond these walls, I’ll personally ensure that you never finish this school! Is that clear?!” he screamed.

“Yes, sir!” the females saluted.

When the shaii was already at the tenth female, he heard the sound of the door opening and soon two doctors rushed in. They ran to the boy and started examining him. Meanwhile the shaii finished writing down the names and surnames.

“We’ll need to take him to the sick-bay. He seems to have a concussion and his tail is broken,” one of the meds said after looking the boy over.

“Fine, take him and his stuff and inform his superiors that he won’t be able to attend tomorrow’s drill. I’ll report the incident to the Taisa myself,” the shaii said. His cold blue eyes snapped to the female whom he had seen holding the newbie’s tail. “Come here,” he beckoned her with his fingers. “Your tail,” he reached out his palm.

The female paled. She unwound her tail off her waist, took it in her hand and held out for the shaii. The loud scream echoed in the hall together with the loud snap. The shaii dropped the tail alongside the female, who now was on her knees, tears of pain streaming down her face.

The shaii’s head snapped back to the hushed hall, lavender hair flying around his shoulders. “Dismissed!” he barked.

ooOoOoOoo

Goten’s eyes fluttered open. For several seconds he stayed completely still then looked around, confused. He was in a medical bay. There were five other men besides him. He was the only one awake it seemed.

His tail hurt. A loud groan left Goten’s mouth as the pain reminded him of recent events. He had been beaten up by a bunch of females… What a disgrace. Hiding his face in the pillow, he groaned again – the whole base would be talking about this nonstop. His life would be hell – no one would pass him without pouring salt into the wound.

Goten gathered that it was still early in the morning, and he wasn’t sure what he should do. But as soon as he decided to get up and go to the bathroom and at the same time get some information about what was going on, the door opened and a doc, with a nurse following him, entered the ward.

As Goten was the only one awake, the two males approached him first. The doctor asked how Goten felt, examined his tail then his head, ordered the nurse to dress the tail again then went to the others. Goten didn’t manage to get much information from them except that he had been here since yesterday and that his tail was broken and he had a light concussion.

He was told that very likely he would be released in the evening and that now he should use the opportunity to rest. Goten found the bathroom first, ate breakfast that consisted of some cereal, vegetables and tea then used the advice he had been given. He realized perfectly well he would need all of his strength to survive this school.

Goten got caught up on the sleep his body needed and slept almost until lunch, had his meal and went back to sleep again. At about six o’clock Goten was woken up by Ario rustling about next to his bed. Goten’s eyes blinked at the big Saiyan. To tell the truth, Goten was surprised to see the second-class here.

“Hey,” Ario waved his hand. “What the heck happened to you? At first I thought you had overslept but then I heard that you were at the sick-bay...”

Goten greeted Ario and sat up in the bed, the sheet sliding down his chest to reveal the white undershirt he was wearing. Goten gave the man a bitter smile. “I got beaten up.”

“Heck, already on your first day!” Ario patted himself on his bald head, disapproving. He was used to ruffling through his longish mane and still couldn’t get used to the feel of only skin instead. “Who was it?”

Goten shook his head. “It’s too embarrassing to talk about. Besides, the rumors will start flying soon enough. Believe them.”

Ario shrugged. “Fine, then.” He reclined tiredly into a nearby chair and stretched his legs out. “You don’t mind me taking these damn boots off, do you?” Not waiting for an answer, Ario started taking them off. “Got blisters all over my feet. Ahhh…” he exhaled blissfully, stretching his sore toes. “I gotta go to Toharu and get a bigger size later.”

“Toharu?”

“Ah, it seems I forgot to introduce you two. I somehow thought you knew him from school.” Ario yawned. “My boyfriend, the one I arrived together with. The lucky bastard got sent to help with distributing supplies. I think it’s because he has that deceiving goodie-goodie face,” he giggled. “He did give you better boots and more blankets, didn’t he?” he looked at Goten questioningly.

Goten scratched his bald head. Surprisingly, it seemed that Ario thought of Toharu as more than just a fuck buddy. “Ah, so that’s what that was all about… Actually I didn’t have time to check the supplies out. And now I have no idea where they are. Well, say thanks to Toharu anyway.”

Ario just nodded. “So what’s actually wrong with you?” he asked, wiggling his feet, enjoying the cool air around them.

“I guess I really did have a concussion. And in addition to that I got my tail broken. Otherwise it’s only a bunch of bruises. Nothing serious,” Goten answered.

“When are they going to release you?” Ario asked, starting to rock on the chair and threatening to topple over, and Goten wondered how the man had any energy left after the drill.

“I was promised to be released today,” Goten told him, “but it doesn’t seem to be happening. It seems that currently they have enough free space in the med-bay, and since I won't be able to attend drill for a few days anyway, it doesn’t really matter to them if I stay here or go to my barracks.”

Ario stayed another fifteen minutes. He related everything he had experienced during the first drill then cursed the drill sergeant for about ten minutes then wished Goten good luck and left, leaving a confused Goten stare at the closed door. Goten had been sure that the second-class had come to fish for gossip, and was quite surprised when the man didn’t pry any further.

Dinner arrived several minutes after Ario left and Goten dug in hungrily. The food was horrible: some mashed greenish-brown vegetables, stewed or boiled potatoes (Goten couldn’t tell which), and a tiny piece of meat of an unknown date. But Goten had eaten worse and wasn’t going to be picky about food now. His body was healing and required any nourishment it could get. Besides, he doubted that he would get anything better in the canteen.

After finishing his meal, Goten settled back to sleep, but was shaken out of his slumber by the same doctor who had checked on him that morning.

“You’re still here?” The doctor shook his head. “Go get your belongings and get the hell out of here. How do you think you'll attend the lectures tomorrow? Here,” he held out a piece of paper for a blinking Goten. “You are relieved from physical service for the next four days. Come here once a day to get your tail re-bandaged and no jumping or sudden moves or your head will start killing you again.”

Goten blinked once again at the door after it had shut behind the doctor’s back. He lowered his head to look at the sheet he was holding between his fingers. So he was to attend lessons but not drill. It was only logical.

Goten sighed and climbed out of the bed. He winced as his bandaged tail shifted causing pain. He waited for the pain to go away and then moved to the door. So now he had the difficult task of finding his clothes and the barracks he was assigned to…

Goten wandered through the corridors for some time until he found the same cubicle with the same old Saiyan female and her young assistant. Goten approached them and asked for his clothes. The female eyed him, but it seemed that without that bloody mess on his face she didn’t recognize him. Goten was sent to Room 122 where he found his clothes and all the other stuff he thought he would never see again. He was quite surprised that nobody had taken the blankets and boots.

Before leaving the hospital, Goten stopped at the same reception area to ask if they happened to know which barracks he was assigned to. The female motioned with her hand, indicating for him to go away, but the guy started searching for something under the table then slammed a huge book on the desk in front of Goten’s nose.

“When were you brought here? Name and surname?” he asked.

“Yesterday. Goten Bardock,” Goten leaned his pile of clothes on the wall as it was becoming annoying to keep his arms up and balance the whole thing. He watched the man leaf through the pages, his finger searching through the surnames.

“Ah, here. Goten Bardock, a savar, third-class, enlisted yesterday. Squad seven. Under the command of captain Laureus Tanko. Barracks number three, room fifty-four,” he read. “Has a concussion and a broken tail.” The man’s head rose to Goten. “A third-class?” he cocked his head to his left shoulder. Then he turned to the female. “Give me a marker; Saira fucked up the records again.”

“Squad seven, Laureus Tanko, the third barracks, fifty-four,” Goten repeated in his head several times while watching the guy striking through the word “third-class” and writing “second-class” above it. “Thanks!” Goten nodded at him thankfully and turned to the door.

The sky was still quite bright, the sun still up. It was already setting, but provided enough light for him to clearly see the numbers on the barracks and soon he was at the third barracks. He entered the building but before going to the second floor he stopped to read the notice-board that hung at the very entrance.

Goten’s eyes quickly found his surname amongst the others and he found out that tomorrow at eight, he, with all others who were in squads 5, 6 and 7, was supposed to be at the fifth auditorium for a lecture about using arms versus ki-blasts on the battlefield. Then a lecture about the re-introduction of cold steel in a modern Saiyan army was to follow. And then another one about the development of ki-guns. Then they were supposed to go to the main yard and finish the day with drill sergeants drilling them to death. Goten thought about the piece of paper in his pocket and smiled – that didn’t include him.

He studied the notice-board for five more minutes then went to the stairs that led to the second floor. He found the room he was looking for, knocked and pressed on the handle with his foot. Maneuvering the pile of clothing on his arms carefully, he entered the room.

It was small, with four bunks and a table at the window. Several half-empty shelves were hung on the walls above the beds. Goten’s gaze settled on one of the three guys in the room. Here a smirk appeared on Goten’s face. It was the same guy who had sent him to the female barracks.

“Well, hello there,” Goten said, walking over to the free bunk and tossing his stuff on it.

The other two second-classes looked at their room-mate questioningly. The guy just shrugged and asked Goten if he had seen any boobs during his visit to the female barracks.

Goten shook his head in denial. He walked over to the guy. He knew it was pointless and silly and suicidal, but he was pissed – nobody walked away unscathed after playing such a prank on him.

The other two guys jumped to their feet after Goten had punched their friend in the gut. Goten turned around, snarling, ready to pounce if any of them wanted a piece of him. He heard warning bells go off in his head as, after standing up, one of them appeared to be almost twice as big as he was.

“Hey, if you want your bunk back, just say so,” the bigger of the two snarled. “But don't come in here throwing punches or I’ll put you back in the hospital. You,” he motioned with his head to the guy Goten had punched in the gut. “Get your stuff off his bed!”

“I told you he’d know that you took his bunk!” the other snorted at the doubled over man.

Goten blinked and lowered his fists. Apparently there were numbers on the bunks or something. “Give my bunk back!” he turned back to the guy who bared his canines at him. But the guy's threatening demeanor subsided after his tower-sized roommate approached him with an expression of warning on his face.

“Fine, you fucker!” he spat and turned to start gathering his stuff.

“I’m Goten,” Goten nodded to the big Saiyan.

“Yeah, I know,” he rolled his eyes, turning to the bed where Goten had thrown his clothes. He pointed at the headboard of the bunk where a piece of paper with Goten’s name was stuck. “He switched the names. Wanted to have the bed at the window.”

Goten’s eyes shifted to the big guy’s bed where a note with the name "Daram" was stuck. Then he looked at the other bunk. “So…I suppose it’s nice to meet you, Daram and Kyon,” Goten scratched his bald head sheepishly.

The other two nodded and went back to their bunks. Daram plopped into his bunk and picked up the book he had been reading before Goten arrived. Kyon went to the table and switched the radio on. After Daram’s displeased look at Kyon because of the loud music, Kyon plugged in a headset and put it on. It became very clear who had the authority in the room.

Goten waited for the third one to gather his stuff then moved to his own bunk and plopped down on it. Yep, he definitely liked this place next to the window better. Goten peeled the sticker with the name “Roland” off the end of the bunk, walked over to Roland’s bunk, slapped the sticker on it, peeled off his own and came back to his bunk.

“And I want new sheets,” Goten pointed at Roland’s bed.

“You little…!” Roland growled.

“Shut up, Roland. You are irritating me,” Daram said from behind his book. “And he’s as tall as you.”

ooOoOoOoo

Goten looked around the kitchen. He had followed Kyon there after Kyon said he wanted to smoke and Daram said that he would kill him if he smoked in the room.

“So what’s with Daram and Roland?” Goten asked after looking around.

The kitchen was small, shabby and dirty with only two stoves at the wall. The walls were painted a light yellow, the color having faded to a disgusting shade after several years. There were no utensils around. The trash bin in the corner was overflowing and the three sinks were filled with cigarette butts and various scraps.

Kyon opened the only window, lit his cigarette and inhaled the smoke deeply. “Roland messed with Daram once and Daram is still pissed,” he exhaled loudly. “I don’t know the details – the same as you, I came to this base only a day ago – but that’s what everybody keeps saying.”

“Wait… Roland and Daram… Are they both second-years?” Goten asked.

“Yep,” Kyon nodded. “You should have known that by their long hair,” he commented, snickering. “But you were probably too busy punching that idiot in the gut.”

“Do you think Daram purposely arranged it so that Roland would be assigned to the same room as him?” Goten wondered.

“Definitely,” Kyon nodded. “No doubt about it. We gotta look out for trouble,” he spat through the window. “Those two will be at each other's throats until one of them kills the other. I heard they used to grapple quite a lot. Roland has suffered many broken bones at Daram's hands.”

I want to go back home or at least back to the hospital, Goten thought. After talking some more it appeared that Goten and Kyon were both assigned to the seventh squad.

The rest of the night passed more or less fine, except that Goten woke up five times to Roland’s snoring, which breached all noise limits. But at three o’clock in the morning, Daram’s left boot smashed into Roland’s open mouth, Roland turned to his other side, and Goten was finally able to sleep.

At five o’clock Goten heard the sirens go off, but just covered his head with his blanket and slept further while his roommates dressed and left the barracks.



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