Second Chances For Love
by StarbearerTM     More by this Writer
What if instead of going to the past with the Time Machine, Future Trunks instead used a spaceship to go to New Namek? How would things be different, and could he succeed?
Shota



In Transit
The first awareness that came to the youth was the feeling of sterile cold air. Lavender lashed eyes slowly flickered open, and their owner turned onto his side. One muscular arm landed across the length of the bed, judging it narrower then it normally should be. Shaking off sleep like a blanket, the youth blinked into the shimmering curve of metal wall that emerged from the blur of morning vision. The distant hum of a power unit vibrated the entire tiny world that was now his temporary home.

Sliding his hand under the pillow, he touched the thin film of the picture he had slipped there. Quickly he pulled out the photograph, his pounding heart relaxing a few beats to realize he had not lost this piece of memory. Though it was a bit dog-eared, he often gazed upon it longingly before he would fall asleep each ‘night’. His arms were wrapped around the waist of one who loved him as no other would then or since, and to whom he had made a silent promise.

Just how many days had passed inside the metal shell of the Capsule spacecraft, he wondered. Pressing a kiss to his fingertips, he touched them in turn to the mouth of the dark haired dream in the picture. Anyone else who saw the picture would simply see two young men stumbling and laughing in each other’s arms, with a shared look of surprise and triumph on their faces. Yet through the eyes of the youth, he saw far more represented there. One who had been older brother, father figure, and lastly and most importantly the love of his life.

Granted it was a short and harsh existence, only the span of a few years long, but seemed double its span considering the events marking it. Tossing aside the covers cocooning him, the lavender haired youth swung his legs around and pressed the bare soles of his feet to the chilly floor. Artificial gravity still functioned well, he noted, feeling the weight of his own body under 1 Chikyuu G as he stood. He turned only to slide the picture back under his pillow and to tug the sheets up to straighten the bed. Just why he performed such tasks was simple; engrained in his mind from a young age were the rituals that his mother and later, the one he loved had told him were important reminders of normalcy.

After stowing the picture, he then glided his arms and legs to stretch out training sore muscles. Only a few days could he spend in one G before he would try upping the field strength. The destination was still months away, a quick glance at a battered paper calendar taped to the wall near his bed told him. His crystal blue eyes fixed on the black field of hot white points visible through the round windows of his ‘world’. Reaching through the clothing he found a T shirt bearing the Capsule logo, and a pair of loose sweat pants to wear that were recently cleaned from the ship’s onboard laundering cycle. To reach them he had pushed aside a hanger bearing the dark blue jacket and pairs of pants neatly folded. Landing would be days off, and it seemed silly to try wearing something heavier then what he now pulled onto his muscular body.

Movement out of the corner of his eye only temporarily caused him to jolt. Snapping his head around he saw his own reflection, long purple strands of hair falling around his young face. It had grown considerably since his start at Earth, and Trunks found little need to trim it. Besides, something inside told him he wanted few reminders of his former self.

Striding up to the mirror, he peered at his image, judging that other side of himself that was unproven and found wanting. Still if he ran his fingers over the back of his head, he could remember the throbbing bump dealt to him, along with the unfortunate gift of unconsciousness that preceded the shattering of his hope. Initially shattering into zillions of fragments, the visions now awaited reconstruction in the promise of his mother’s inventive genius.

While she had put most of her dreams into a Time Machine, Trunks had suggested an alternative plan. Granted they had shreds of Saiyan Technology still in the battered ruined labs of Capsule underground, but a Time machine required great amounts of energy to recharge, while a space ship already still existed in the battered hanger.

Trunks frowned, pounding his fist into the flat of his hand. He fought against the onslaught of images that were newly formed from the repeated dream. How many times would he have to relive the last movements preceding his’ hope’s first shattering? If he closed his eyes, he could smell the stony scent of the falling rain drenching his hair, which was short at the time. Pushing his fingers into squelching mud in an attempt to rise and rush to where he knew he’d find his love.

Love was something that was a grounding force in a crazy existence. When you didn’t know which moment would be your last, you would hang onto it with both hands and not let go. The warmth of a body upon which you had depended your life and gave your life in return was the measure of its intensity. What had started as mutual respect and great affection only veiled the true force of his motivation. For his love, he now ventured into the unknown, and for his love, he would have gladly gone in his place.

Toes slammed into mud, running along the ruined buildings to see where the figure lay face down. His heart pounded as his senses registered no ki, an absence that grew like a black hole. Passing his arm under his lover’s neck and raising it out of the mud, stroking dark fronds of soft hair matted with mud from his handsome face. Only to see the lifeless eyes vacant and staring into infinity up at him, but not seeing him. Alternatively, the trail of blood that dripped from the corner of his shapely mouth. A mouth that he longed to taste, and knew the counters of as he lowered his lips to them and struggled to breath his own life into his lover’s lifeless body.

“Damn it, breathe,” he whispered, between attempts to fill the muscular chest, which rose and fell under the ripped orange and blue cloth. Tears festered hot in his eyes as he felt them dripping onto the tanned skin that reminded him of light cinnamon, each angle burned forever into his brain at that moment. The lump in his throat growing to the size of a softball to choke off his hitching breath as he wrapped his arms around the body that was now cold and lifeless.

No amount of shaking, coaxing or soft ministrations would return what was now gone. All he could do was to clutch his love closer, pushing his face into ebony short hair and tremble with weeping rage. He cursed himself for not having the strength to join him in death, or take his place. Hadn’t he given his entire will? The screams of his name from the lips that quivered, “Gohan!”

Now only a whisper came from his lips and echoed in the cabin, “Gohan.”

Whispering that name gave him hope, and great dread. For Gohan he would do anything. For Gohan he would face hell itself.

“It should have been me, love,” he whispered. “Damn it. It should have been me. If I’d only been stronger…” Trunks whispered, wrapping his arms around his chest and hugging himself tightly. Swallowing hard he pushed away the hard memories and reached deep for ones far more pleasant. Death was only temporary if he achieved what he had set out to do.

Long ago Mother had taught him that through memories of loved ones, a person achieved immortality. As long as one spoke the name and carried the impressions from life to life the person would continue to exist. Such was the belief of ancestor worship. Goku’s memory lived on in his son, Gohan. In turn, the memories of his father Vegeta lived in his own mother’s brain. The blood of a Saiyan prince flowed in his veins, but it was a heritage that Trunks accepted with trepidation.

Just what it meant to be Saiyan depended on the point of view. All his definitions of Saiyan came from the stories of Son Goku, and the lessons taught to him by Gohan, his mentor, friend, and lover. Carrying the hopes and dreams of so many fighters was a burden Trunks was unsure he could shoulder. Memories and love gave him strength, and had pulled the hidden power out from the depths of his outraged soul. Unfortunately, great power without tempering was useless against the Androids.

Reaching around his neck, Trunks fingered something dangling there on a chain. A single capsule tapped against his chest, containing something of great import. Were they hopes and dreams of a civilization, or something more? Through him, Gohan lived on, and because of him, if all went well, his lover would again breathe and fight as he was meant to do.

“Dead fighters won’t help, Mom,” Trunks had said.

“But Trunks,” his mother protested, swinging her head from under the panel of the time machine that day. “If I can go back and stop Goku from ever getting sick, then there’s the chance this will never have happened?”

“Then what happens to us, Mother. I don’t mean to be selfish, but will we even exist as we do now?” Trunks asked, thinking immediately of the consequences of monk eying with time. “Do we even DARE play God when there are other possibilities?”

Straightening up, Bulma grabbed a rag from her pants pocket and wiped grease from her hands. Smudges of black graced her alabaster skin, two shades lighter then Trunks. She blinked at him, twisting the rag between her fingers, “Trunks, what are you saying?”

“Mom, you said there were other Dragon Balls. How about those on New Namek?” Trunks asked. “Why put all our eggs in one basket when there’s another solution we haven’t even pursued?”

“Surely you don’t mean…”

“Mom, it’s far greater a possibility that I’ll make it to Namek. It’s months away, but wouldn’t you rather bet on that… and bringing Gohan back to life before the year is up?”

“Trunks… that’s insane…”

“Just think, if I bring Gohan back to life, then you can send one of us to the past for help. Besides, I owe it to him after what happened.”

“When are you going to stop blaming yourself for his death, Trunks? It’s unfair!”

“Don’t tell me what’s fair Mother,” Trunks inhaled, seeing the anger sparkling in his mother’s eyes.

“Even if you did reach New Namek, there’s a chance something could have wiped out the Namekians there,” Bulma swallowed hard.

“But getting a space ship ready can’t be any more difficult than a time machine? Especially since there are some with enough time I could get working,” Trunks said quietly. “Please Mother…”

“All right, Trunks. We will try it. However, I can only give you two weeks of my time. If we can’t get a ship ready and working in that period, then I must give full priority to the time machine,” Bulma relented.

“I’ll give you all the help I can. I’ve already made a start,” Trunks confessed. His blue eyes sparkled with excitement, and she realized how fast he was growing.

“So that’s where you were going off to. I was afraid you were hiding in your room, but you were rebuilding a spaceship?” Bulma half chuckled.

His mother’s work could have carried him into the past, but he would rather face a certain future that he owned to the one he loved most. Gohan deserved to live here and now, and together they would rid earth of the monsters that one Saiyan alone could not beat. Only a year could pass before this reality would forever collapse, and the Time Machine would be the other alternative.

Bulma had agreed she would rather him face the depths of space then the winds of time. She would rather lose herself in its past, then her own son. A two-month voyage to Namek was a greater certainty having done it herself rather than an uncharted course to nowhere.



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