"Alright, Goku." You speak up, stroking your chin. "Lets go get your son back. I trust that you know how to get there?"
"Hmm..." Goku says loudly. "Yeaaaaaah, sorta'." You look at him questioningly, but he doesn't seem to notice. "I mean, I recognized a lot of the people here's Ki Signature. When I escaped, there wasn't any map or anything. I just used my instincts and sensed the best I could."
Your palm finds its way up to your face instinctively and you sigh. "Can you get us back or not?"
"I think I can. They must be suppressing their Ki though, because I can't sense any of 'em. But together, i'm sure we can do it!"
"Meh, whatever you say." You stand up and eye Rem carefully, who does the same to you. "You alright with me leaving so suddenly?"
"No, i'm not." He boldly replies.
"Well lucky for me, I don't care what you think. I'll send you a postcard." You turn around and shoot your right hand above your head, giving a small wave to the rest of the room without saying another word. Goku walks right after you, not even attempting to say a goodbye. "Lead the way."
16 Years Ago...
"We'll be alright, Ed..." A young Kaiba says to his little brother, patting him on the shoulder. "Even though mom's gone, we still have each other!" His brother doesn't respond. He only glares at a closed coffin in an empty church.
"But what if you get hurt?" Ed asks, a tear slipping out of his eye.
Still a child himself, Kaiba sighs and clenches his fists. "Just have a little faith." Footsteps creep up behind the two and a short, stubby man with glasses approaches the two children.
"Hi, uh, Kaiba, Eddy, we have to go." He sympathetically speaks up. "Sorry, but the bus is waiting. I have to get you guys to your new foster home before dinner or else you won't have anything to eat tonight!"
"Right." Kaiba softly says, bringing his brother along. "We'll be okay. As long as we stick together!"
10 Years Afterwards...
"Kaiba! Get your ass down here, you have a visitor!" A fat women with grey hair shouts up the stairs, grappling onto the railing. In a few seconds, Kaiba slides down the railing and jumps off with style. "At the door. He's some military man who wants to recruit you or something?" The foster mother directs, pulling a cigarette out of her pocket and lighting it in the house.
"Military!?" Kaiba gasps, running to the door. His long hair breezes by and he reaches the open door. A man with piercing eyes and a formal suit stands tall without saying a word. "Hiya, i'm Kaiba Abiak. I was told you were looking for me...?"
"That is correct. My name is Rem and I am currently in the process of gathering fighters with recognized accomplishments from around the world. You, Mr. Abiak, are on my list."
"Yes. Is it a fact that you recently conquered every fighter in the World Martial Arts Tournament without being touched?"
Kaiba blushes a bit and scratches his head, smiling. "Tatito, ergh...Yes, it's true Mr. Rem!"
"Splendid. How would you feel about joining an organization titled the Freeborn Military? I assure you that you will be treated with the finest of accommodation and will find it more than satisfactory. You will be assisting in the greater good of the Planet."
"W-wow. But what about my brother Ed? I can't just-"
"Then take him along with you. He's free to join. Mr. Abiak, how about we discuss this further over coffee? I'll inform you of all the details you would like to know." Rem persuasively says.
"O-okay," Kaiba agrees and steps out of the house, closing the door behind him. "But uh, no guarantees..."
The sun blisters down and scrapes the skin off of your neck as you quietly walk with the Saiyan named Goku. Since the two of you left Forte Valkyrie two hours ago, not a word has been spouted between you both. Finally, Goku spots and shakes a puddle of sweat out of his air.
"You know, it'd be a lot faster if we could fly..." He complains.
"I'm sure it would. But unless you want to carry me through the skies, I don't see that as an option." You coldly reply, walking ahead of him. He catches up to you with a slow jog and sighs. "Where the Hell are we going anyway?"
"Ummmm..." Goku looks in each direction and raises his hand in the air, squinting into the distance. "Thhhhat way!" He yells, pointing to the northeast. Not asking any questions, you press on with no intent of speaking for another few hours but Goku obviously had different plans. "So Kiryu, what's your story?"
"I don't have a story. We done?"
"Hehe," Goku chuckles a bit. "Seriously, why did you join the Freeborn Military? Of all the organizations you could join, why'd ya' pick the FB...M?"
"If it's any consolation, I joined the Red Ribbon Army when I was 18. I was there for a few years before I left and joined Rem at the FBM."
"Oh? What made you quit?"
"I was persuaded by the man who saved my life. Besides, the Red Ribbon Army manipulated me into thinking that what they made me do was just...Not like I even know what such a concept means." Goku frowns at this and looks back into the horizon.
"Maybe you need better motives to help guide you on a just path."
"Like saving my unborn son?"
"How about saving somebody who exists?" Goku retorts. "Friends? Family? Even people you don't know! Everybody needs help with something...Maybe you could-"
"Maybe I could just keep living my life how I want. That work for you?" Goku looks taken back a bit, but shrugs it off. The silence that impedes suddenly begins to bother you, so you continue speaking. "Hoi. My parents were murdered when I was a child. I have no care for those who I do not know, and all of the people who I would even consider a 'friend' don't need any help."
"Have you asked them if they needed help?"
"...No." Goku smiles briefly at this, glad that he was able to get you to admit defeat on at least one point. "What about you, Goku? Is saving your son and living happily ever after all you want with your life?"
"Not exactly. I mean, that's my plan right now. I don't really have anything else in mind. Maybe I'll visit my old Master to see how he's doing. After that, I want to learn of a way to take down Prince Vegeta and everybody else working with him."
"You were born and raised in the Saiyan Kingdom, correct?" Goku nods. "So why is it that all of a sudden you and the ones with the most authority over your entire race have such a large scaled hatred between one another?"
"When I turned 12, I left the Saiyan Kingdom to go train amongst the greatest. I learned more about the world and its people, which sort of gave me a wider understanding of just what was going on outside of my life. Ever since then, I stopped doing what King Vegeta had ordered and started becoming my own man. I would leave the Saiyan Empire for months at a time to just try and help the world best I could. But my strength kept growing and growing to such a degree that I guess the King didn't feel my um, disobedience was enough to have me killed. But once I became a father...He exploited me the best he could."
"By threatening his life unless you did what he asked?" Goku nods slowly. "I don't understand why you wouldn't just hand the kid over to his mother and have her live far away from that freak."
Goku looks off into the distance and sees a large dock that stretches out into the ocean. Many ships are all surrounding the dock, with sailors of all sort running about. "My wife Bulma - who was also Gohan's mom - passed away shortly after giving birth to Gohan. Apparently Gohan was a ripe fruit before he should have been. His premature birth was too much on Bulma, because of the tremendous amount of power he was born with. I had to take him back with me to the Saiyan Empire..."
You look down on the ground, feeling like an ass now. "Sorry." You calmly say and Goku shrugs it off, keeping his optimistic attitude at a peak.
"Anyway, it looks like we made it." Goku cheerfully says.
Looking just ahead, you see a few ships sailing out into the open waters. To the right of the shipping dock, a large desert crawls around the exterior walls of the ocean that goes so far off into the distance you can't even begin to see an end. And finally on your left, there is a bright forest just off into the distance that is crowded with overgrown trees and mysterious life.
"Made it where exactly? There are no irregular powers around here."
"No, not to the refugee Saiyans' hideout. We're far from getting there, especially since we're walking. But if we keep going north east, there shouldn't be any problem getting there. I think..."
"And you want to get there by travelling by sea. How long will that take?"
"I don't know, a few hours...or days. But I mean, if you get sea sick or something, we can always go another way. This ocean current is just the quickest way. Taking the desert route would take twice as long and we'll probably be tired by the time we make it to where a boat would drop us off...But as far as I know, it's clear territory. No enemies live this far out...I think."
"Which implies that you believe there are enemies living in the water? Makes perfect sense!" You sarcastically reply.
"Hehe, exactly." Goku happily cheers, not realizing you were making fun of him. "I haven't been in this area for a good three years, so they could be dead for all I know but..." A bead of sweat drips off from Goku's temple and evaporates in the sand. "There are a group of ocean dwelling creatures that are called Tuffles. Story has it that the Saiyans wiped out the majority of their race and pushed them off of not only their own land, but land altogether. That was a few hundred years ago."
"Were they capable of living underwater before?"
"No!" Goku yells. "That's the scary thing. They were such bright people that they managed to develop technologies that allowed them to live freely underwater just before the Saiyans finally took the last of their land! But again, a lot can happen in three years so maybe...they're gone?"
"I wouldn't count on it." You say, looking over to the forest. "You know, that bright green path seems to follow along the ocean's path pretty closely. Might take a bit longer since we would be travelling on foot rather than boat, but I'd say we can take that path and avoid all trouble."
"Oh no no no no." Goku puts his palms forward to try and stop your devious plan. "A Namekian named Piccolo lives in that forest. It's his home that he claimed seven years ago now. He's insanely powerful, considering even King Vegeta of all people listened to his demands and let him have that land. The Red Ribbon Army doesn't touch him either. Nobody even dares go in that forest. Well, nobody that we'll ever know of that is..."
You smile a bit and gaze into the forest. "Interesting."
"No, Kiryu! I said we aren't going that way! I'm trying to save my son, not die along the way!"
"Oh stop being a baby. We're some of the strongest fighters that have ever existed in this dimension. I wouldn't count on some forest dwelling green man to be able to give us too much trouble."
"That was a bit racist..." Goku admits and you roll your eyes and start walking towards the forest. Goku runs up to you and grabs your shoulder, turning you around. "Listen, you're helping me with Gohan and I appreciate that so whatever you want to do...we'll do. But please, lets be smart about this!"
You sigh and look at each route, examining the situation. "Fine, I've come to a decision. We'll..."
A) Travel across the desert. It may be tiring and lengthy, but at least it's safe!
B) Travel by sea. These Tuffles might not even exist, and even if they do, they're nothing to the two of you!
C) Travel through the forest. Piccolo shouldn't be any problem if he arises. Who's to say he's evil anyway!
D) Go back to Forte Valkyrie. Me so scared!
Author's Chapter Notes: