Dragon Ball Z: Pride Before A Fall

Chapter 8 - END

It was a somber victory for Bulma. She had won back her saiyan prince. But it was not as it had been before. From that night into the next few weeks, he returned to sleeping next to her at night, but went to sleep quickly and woke long before she got up. And though he no longer refused to speak to her, when he did choose to, it was usually brief and harsh. Even her teasing usually met with cold glares rather than warm blushes. She wished she could say she didn't know what was wrong with her Vegeta, but she knew. His goals were crushing the life out of him. And she was no longer a solution.

In the beginning, she thought it was the mood between them that was causing it – the occasional sweating, light-headedness, and bloating. She tried getting more rest and taking a trip to the spa to relax herself. Then came the nausea, and in her gut she knew. She didn't want to believe it at first, she was too scared to. But the facts added up, the symptoms combined with the fact that during the week preparing for her war on Vegeta, she had been so busy she hadn't stopped at the pharmacy to pick up her pills. At last she broke down and bought some test sticks.

"Come on, you stupid thing," Bulma grumbled before the bathroom mirror, swatting the thing anxiously against her palm, "Just spill it already!" At last, it beeped. Bulma stared at it, her mouth hanging. "Oh…" She looked at herself in the mirror, rapidly touching her cheeks with both hands before looking at the reading again. "That's…well, that's…yeah…"

She sat on the toilet for a long moment, just taking it all in. For a moment, she was terrified. She touched her stomach, sweating like she was about to die. Then she was angry, cursing to herself and pounding her fist against the sink. But then, all other feelings out of the way, the truth at last dawned on her…and she opened her mouth in a smile.

"I'm…I'm…!" She hugged herself and squealed with excitement. She looked at the reading one last time and then tucked the stick into her pocket and rushed out of the bathroom. "I have to find Vegeta! Oh the look on his face! I wonder what he'll say! Ohh…!" She paused to fan herself for a moment and took a deep breath, squaring her hips as she walked at a slower pace. "How should I do it? Should I be subtle? Maybe be like, 'Hey Vegeta! I think I might be putting on a couple pounds soon!' …No, Vegeta hates subtly. I should just come out and say it! Yeah, that's it! No, maybe…maybe I should explain it gradually, don't want to scare him too much!" She laughed and broke out into a jog again, rushing out into the yard.

She ran straight to the ship, the door sliding open for her with a soft hiss. She laughed as she came to a stop. "Hey, Vegeta! You in…" She blinked as she saw him, standing in front of several monitors, looking at star charts. He was clean, neat, showered, and… "V…Vegeta?" she asked, her heart beat rising, "Why are you wearing your armor?"

He turned a dial, zooming in a star system, his head turning his way and that. At last he paused, twisting his neck just enough to look at her, briefly. "You're here. Good." He stepped back, giving the screens a look over as he folded his arms. "I wanted to tell you something."

"Oh…really," she stuttered, coming a little closer, "Heh, that's funny, cause I wanted to tell you something too! You see—"

"I'm leaving, Bulma."

She froze. "Wha…what?"

"Immediately. You almost missed me, actually." He put his hands on the console, returning to studying the star charts. "Your father already knows. I was going to leave it to him to tell you. But since you're here, I might as well myself."

Bulma hung back, her arms spread out as she shook with horror. "What…you…" Her brow lowered. "NO! You can't!"

"It's not what you think," he rumbled, his back still to her, "I'm not dismissing you. You are still my wife and will remain so." His lips flattened as he looked down at the control panel. "And as I said before, it is for life. Back on planet Vegeta, there would be severe punishments for anyone who broke the marriage contract. My honor binds me to you. So you can relax, woman."

Bulma continued to shake. "No! You can't leave! Not now!"

"Would you be quiet?" he snapped, "I won't be gone forever. I am merely going elsewhere to complete my training." He grabbed the side of one of the monitors. "It is necessary, I can't reach my potential here, there are far too many…" His voice grew quieter. "Distractions."

"Is that all I am to you?! A distraction?!" His lips pursed. "You know, you have a funny way of showing gratitude, Vegeta. I have done everything I can for you! You…you married me and did you ever once stop to think about whether I wanted to marry you?!" She panted and her face lowered, hugging herself. "Not that I regret it. You…" She turned on him again. "So you just can't!"

He grunted. "Oh really? And how exactly do you intend to stop me?" He turned around and she shrunk at the coldness in his eyes. "Hmm?" Her lips wiggled and he lifted a fist. "Did you really think you could keep me here with you on your little planet forever? I am Prince Vegeta, the destined lord of the entire universe. There is no force that can stop me." He lifted his mouth into a cruel little smile, leaning close to her. "Stay your tears and think of that, will you. Someday, I will come for you and you will be a queen. You will stand at my side as I gaze down upon the ashes of a thousand worlds, truly supreme. All will fall before me, even Kakarot as he is made to bow to the Prince of All Saiyans." He took her chin in his white-gloved fingers. "But not you, Bulma." He chuckled, his smile tightening into a grin. "Now isn't that a future worth looking forward for?" He laughed.

Bulma grunted, her visage trembling as she fought to hold down the scream erupting inside. Vegeta continued to laugh, seemingly oblivious to this. Her teeth clenched and she struck him across the face. He stopped laughing and stared at her. She hit him again and glared, tears creeping up into the corners of her eyes.

Vegeta continued to look at her and his mouth slowly closed. "Hm. Disappointing."

She choked and grunted again. "Wake up, Vegeta." She angrily pushed aside her tears.

"And here I thought you believed in me…"

"Wake up, Vegeta!"

He turned his shoulder to her, folding his arms and looking up. "That's all right, though. Your faith will soon be restored…" He eyed her and chuckled darkly. "I can wait…"

"The hell is the matter with you?!" she screamed, stopping her foot, "You're talking like…like…are you crazy?!"

"I can see that you are overwhelmed by the vastness of it all," he brushed her off, turning away again, "But now that Frieza's out of the way, it's only a matter of time. It always has been." He returned to the control console. "Go now. I won't be taking you with me."

Bulma stared at his back, a tightness welling up in her chest. She hissed as she clenched her fists at her sides. "You can't…you're supposed to be here." He didn't look at her. "You can't…you can't!" Her heart thundered and she threw her arms back and screamed. "Vegeta, I'm pregnant!"

He stopped, his mouth freezing open slightly, the color draining from his face. "Ut…" he choked, wobblingly microscopically Bulma continued her own shaking. His eyes stared wide at the wall, almost looking dizzy. Finally, at long last, his mouth slowly closed. "Hmm. Congratulations."

"Wha…" she stared, her expression shifting to shock, "I…yeah…it…it's yours, Vegeta."

He scowled at her. "Well of course it's mine! At least it had better be!"

"Ah! No," she glared back, leaning forward, "No I would not." She touched her head. "It's just…I mean…" She came up behind him and touched his shoulders. "Don't you know what this means? We're gonna have a baby! …You know? I'm gonna be a mom and you're gonna be a dad?"

He grunted, shaking her off. "That is generally what pregnant means, yes, I understand the concept."

"Well it…it's wonderful news!" she exclaimed, grabbing his shoulders again and shaking him slightly, "Aren't you excited?!"

"What's there to be excited about?" he scoffed, "I admit I didn't consider the possibility, but it's only natural that offspring would eventually come about. Only time will tell what that prospect is worth."

"Is worth?!" she cried, wanting to slap him again, "What do you mean 'is worth'?! This is a baby we're talking about, Vegeta, not real-estate!"

"The concept is similar," he mildly returned, "To a true Saiyan, an infant's only value is the potential warrior they may become. Show me the child when it's born, and perhaps then I'll show some enthusiasm."

"What the…you are unbelievable!" she screamed, "How dare you talk about our baby that way?!" She growled and folded her arms. "Well one thing's for sure, I sure hope he isn't born an asshole like you!"

"Consider yourself lucky if he's anything like me. He'll be strong."

"Or she!"

"Females are usually weaker…" He rubbed his chin thoughtfully, looking down. "But then, there have been great women among the warrior class, so perhaps…" He snorted. "It's far too soon to say." He gave her a sharp look. "Was there anything else?"

Bulma seethed and he actually jerked back as she slammed her hands on the wall on either side of him. "Yeah, you're a jerk and I hope you get hit by a meteorite or something while you're out there!" He lowered his brow at her and she pulled back, folding her arms. "Whatever. I don't need a loser like you hanging around here anyhow. I'll have this baby all by myself – you'd only get in the way!"

"Hmph." He turned his back to her again.

Bulma bit her lip angrily and ran out of the ship, refusing to let him see her cry again. She plopped on the ground and hugged herself: hugged the stomach where Vegeta's seed grew. She heard the engines fire, looking back over her shoulder with a gaping expression as the ship took off towards the sky. He was really just leaving her there. She looked down at the ground and shoved her fists to her eyes, beginning to scream as tears burst from her eyes. She cried as the ship fled through the clouds, stopping abruptly as it vanished out of sight. Bulma blinked the rest of the tears away and swallowed. "Vegeta…"

Vegeta rested his arm against the edge of one of the ship's windows, watching as stars came into view and the Earth grew small. Then he felt it – that heaviness on his chest. Vegeta looked down at his breastplate and touched a hand to it, his brow lowering as he growled softly. The moment passed and he walked from the window, taking a comfortable position in one of the ship's chairs, closing his eyes and entering a calm, meditative state. There he sat like that for a long while. Then he heard a soft beeping. His eyes slowed cracked open.

"Hey homeboy."

"Huh?!" he snapped up. He looked to the side and saw Bulma's face smiling softly on one of the monitors.

"Okay, I get it. You need to get away for a while." She smiled and lowered her brow intensely. "But don't think that means you're getting away from me. You're still in my Dad's ship and I'm gonna be keeping tabs on you."

He glared at her and turned away, closing his eyes again. "Fine, whatever, just don't get in my way."

She giggled, touching a hand lightly to her chest. "I would never."


She ran a finger across her lips, watching Vegeta's face through her own screen back on Earth. "So…got any names?"


"For the baby, stupid."

He grunted. "If it's a girl, I could care less. But a first born son will be named Vegeta. That is how my father always intended his line to follow."

"Well that's boring. I don't want two Vegeta's to put up with." She hummed, putting a finger to her chin. "How about Denim…or Trunks…or Boxer? Hmm, I think I like those last two."

"And what exactly is wrong with Vegeta?" he demanded, opening an eye.

"I told you, that's boring! Besides, I'm not gonna have some Saiyan king deciding what I'm gonna call my son! If it is a boy, that is. Now, for some good girl names…"

"Call the brat whatever you want," he snapped, glaring at her, "I don't care. All I care about—"

"Is being the strongest there is, I know." She winked. He looked at her for a long moment, snorting and turning away again. "Vegeta?"


She gave him an earnest look. "Please be careful. Come back safely."

"I will," he stated confidently. He gave a long pause and then turned to the monitor with a sharp look. "And when I return, I will be a Super Saiyan."

She just smiled. "Of course you will."

Months later, a saiyan prince stood on a barren world. Months later, a woman screamed in a hospital bed. To this human woman, a violet haired prince was born. As the newborn cried, far away, his father also cried, gold flickering through his hair, bloodied fists upturned to a storm.
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