Anime Etc. / The Otaku Institute / The Otaku Institute Same-Sex Archive / Fanfic Recommendations / Suto-ri Denkaku

An eerie silence hung over the apartment complex that housed many of the Guardians. While there weren't too many of them on Vejiitasei at all - only 46 of them had been captured by the Saiyans - they were usually social and busy, cleaning, chatting and bustling about, making things as bearable as they could for themselves. Saiyans usually did not take prisoners on their planet raiding forays; the normal procedure was to 'sterilize' the chosen planet of its indigenous sentient life forms. Natives on these planets that tried to fight for their homes and families were squashed as quickly as possible, and those deemed annoying enough were treated to visits from Saiyan Oozuru. Any captives taken during these times were usually for entertainment purposes; slaves were brought back to Vejiitasei only if they were deemed strong enough to withstand the lifestyle and demands of the King.

When the Guardians were brought to Vejiitasei, however, it was made abundantly clear that they were NOT to be used as personal household slaves. The King had them placed in special quarters in the palace, loosely grouped together, and insured that they were kept as busy as any other slaves. They were assigned positions in the infirmary and the research labs, places where their formidable intelligence could be put to productive work; these were also places that were staffed by mostly Elites, and because of what happened when they were initially relocated, only Elites were permitted to have any contact with them. The King had also decided several years into their captivity that they were simply wasting away and needed regular exercise, so he commanded that each was to be paired with a sensei and trained to the best of their ability. The Saiyans established what they euphemistically called a "training program" for them. It was, ostensibly, supposed to increase the Guardian's physical strength and agility - many of them, however, saw it as punitive in the extreme, and felt the Saiyans kept it just to reinforce the your-neck-is-under-my-boot-and-it's-going-to-stay-that-way idea.

That was the feeling that had permeated the compound of late, the feeling that the Saiyans were just looking for an excuse to punish a Guardian - any Guardian. The news about Theo swept through the little community like wildfire; indeed, many Guardians had actually heard her final agonizing shriek, as she broadcast involuntarily to Guardian minds everywhere before she passed out and weren't surprised. They simply wondered why it had taken so long to happen.

Most of them had the good sense to continue on with their day as if nothing had happened, because in the minds of their 'employer,' nothing had happened. Saiyans had the potential for psi sensitivity, but the talent was dormant in most of the population. Because they had no use for power other than for its destructive potential, they scorned any low power usage as childish and ignored twinges and tweaks that might have alerted them to other possible problems.

But that was exactly what the Guardians were doing that bleak afternoon - communicating with each other, using the 'twinges' and 'tweaks' of low wave emission power transfer to talk about Theo and what they were going to do now that their little secret was out. Most of them felt scared to death; the fact that Theo had manipulated power in front of an Elite - the little Prince, no less - was enough to send them over the edge, declaring that they knew what Beryan, Theo and Stranna had been doing, and that any planned escape attempt would need to be NOW. Those Guardians working in the infirmary almost fainted when Raditz stalked in, carrying Theo's limp, burned body in his arms.

"Take care of this thing," he said distastefully, thrusting Theo at the physicians. "The Prince wants her healed, and healed quickly. See to it."

Oshinko, the lead physician, glared at him. "Put it over there," he responded contemptuously, jerking his thumb at an empty stainless steel table. "And you!" he barked at a young Guardian standing next to a small console. "Get over there and start preparing it for one of the tanks." Turning back to the Saiyan, he said, "Don't go anywhere yet, Raditz. First you have to tell me - WHAT are you people gawking at? Get to WORK!" he yelled, distracted, staring over his shoulder at the rest of the staff. The Saiyans in the group turned and cuffed the younger ones, who swatted the slaves before they turned and left the room. "-you have to tell me what to do with the collar," he said in a lower voice, sneaking a look over to the slab where her body was being prepared for the tanks. "I have others," Oshinko continued, "but if what I think happened -there's only one collar that would be suitable for this one."

"Fine, old man," Raditz said sardonically, grimacing. "Use whatever you think is right. Just make sure that it's big enough. And tight enough. That thing's not coming off of her, ever."

"It's right here ...," Oshinko said, unlocking a drawer and pawing through it.

While the Saiyans were sniping at each other the young Guardian scurried over to the long table where Raditz had placed Theo, dragging a small metal cart with surgical implements, gauzes and ointments with her. She yanked her shoulder length red hair back from her face with impatient hands, knotting it behind her neck, exposing a sharp, angular face with color-shifting, violet eyes. The woman tended to Theo, cutting away the rest of Theo's clothes, her sure, nimble fingers gently massaging salve onto her burns. An expression of suppressed rage crossed her face as she clenched her teeth, silently working over Theo, smoothing salve over her blistered face, taping and fastening monitors on several parts of her body, trying to measure her vital signs.

Damn these Saiyans to every hell imaginable, she thought furiously, cutting more burnt clothing and skin away from under Theo's right arm. If I could, I'd ...

Beryan ... Beryan, how is Theo? The thought snaked into her mind, just under the sensing threshold of the Saiyans.

Covertly glancing over at the Saiyans while she worked, Beryan responded, she is alive, but barely. If we don't get her into the tank soon, her body is going to start to regenerate. She was totally unsurprised that Yisador could communicate with her without the Saiyans being any the wiser.

A short silence answered her. Then came a faint reply: Beryan, you must get her into the tank - we cannot afford any more of these .. revelations. A twinge of fear accompanied the thought. Talk to her ... tell her to hang on ... I've tried, and I can't get through ...

She knows I'm here, Yisador, I can feel it. I'm trying ... She looked at the Saiyans again, still sniping and preening for each other, and a great fist of anger squeezed her chest. Stupid moronic half-witted simpleminded idiots get over here and PUT her in the tank for Kami's sake!

Amazingly enough the Saiyans stopped jabbering and walked over to Beryan. The physician grabbed her shoulder and unceremoniously shoved her out of the way, hard enough to throw her into the equipment at the edge of the floor. She caught her balance and watched, seething, as he quickly checked all the leads to Theo's body; then, apparently satisfied, reached for Theo's neck and shot a small, controlled burst of chi into her twisted collar. It parted then, dropping from her throat with a thud, exposing the burnt flesh underneath it. Muttering angrily to himself about the quality of help available in the infirmary, Oshinko reached for the salve and made sure that her entire neck was swathed in the stuff, then nodded to Raditz. A large collar was produced from Raditz's hand.

Good Kami, that thing's big enough to collar six of us, not just one of us!

Beryan shuddered.

Oshinko snapped it around Theo's neck with an audible *click,* then motioned to Raditz to pick her up. Gathering the leads of the monitors in one hand, he gestured for Raditz to take her over to one of the larger tanks. After insuring that everything was connected, he stuck the mask over her face, closed the door and started the machine. The tank filled quickly, the viscous liquid lifting Theo's body so that she was suspended, arms hanging in front of her and head hanging down.

She's in the tank, Yisador ... she'll be all right soon ...

No, daughter, Yisador sent back faintly, things will never be all right again ... there was too much damage done to us today ...

A sharp blow to the side of her head snapped her out of her reverie, throwing her onto a control console. "Get back to work, woman! Stop gaping and start moving, unless YOU want a turn in the tank!" The Saiyan leaned over her and snarled, his eyes bright black, threatening.

As she hurried away, she heard the physician say to the warrior, "It's the only thing they understand. The King says they're so intelligent, but I haven't seen it. Just trained animals, if you ask me. You have to smack them to get them to do anything at all."

Burning with hatred, Beryan rubbed her jaw and thought fiercely, nobody asked you, moron. Slinging a glance behind her, she pulled power from the wellspring into a tight, narrow beam, focused on the ceiling above the Saiyan's head and used the energy to shift the molecules in a meter diameter. As her eyes taperd to thin, violet slits, large chunks of the ceiling rained down on the Saiyans' heads, smashing themselves to pieces. Howling in pain, both Raditz and Oshinko looked about, furiously determined to find the cause as blood dripped down the sides of their faces. As they raced around, Beryan stayed in her corner of the infirmary and watched them, a small, impassive, gray clad figure. A small, satisfied smile was the only evidence of her involvement in their obvious discomfort.

Her eyes drifted over to the tank, which looked like a huge, transparent sarcophagus with Theo floating in the middle. When you're healed, my dear, she thought, we're getting off this rock and away from these imbeciles permanently. Our TARDIS is almost ready.


Some time later, the room was quiet - almost painfully quiet. Banks of machines and computers flanked the walls of the infirmary, noiselessly performing their duties, which were supporting the physicians in delicate operations and keeping the regeneration tanks operating at peak efficiency. There was no scheduled surgery during this hour, so the floor was almost deserted; the only occupants were those in regeneration tanks. On the consoles, small lights flickered on and off, indicating that some processes stopped, while others started; sometimes it was possible to see lights working in tandem, which indicated that the same operation was running on different machines. The regen tanks were the only pieces of equipment that actually made any kind of noise in the room; otherwise, the room was dark and still. Oxygen bubbles softly burst on top of the DNA fluid, a subdued hum eminated from the various parts of the tanks that actually had moving parts, and the occasional murmur from the tanks' occupants were the only sounds audible in the room.

The boy stood in front of one of the larger tanks, watching the unconscious movements of its single occupant. His arms crossed and his tail flicking slightly behind him, his face bore the unmistakable expression of someone concentrating at his maximum capacity as he looked intently into the tank. He seemed to be waiting for something to happen as he stood motionless, staring at the naked woman floating senseless in front of him.

She appeared to be suspended in midair, but in reality was buoyed by the thickness of the gel surrounding her. The entire enclosure was filled with a viscous liquid. She appeared to be swimming in Guardian DNA, the consistency of the solution slightly blurring the outline of her body. The lower half of her face was hidden behind a large dark mask that was fastened securely over her nose and jaw and held in place around her head by two straps, long tubes trailing on either side of her body to the floor of the chamber. Monitors and other types of electronic equipment were strapped or tied around various parts of her body so that accurate physiological readings could be taken - so we can study you, the Saiyan thought to himself. Her head was bent forward and her curly red hair gently bobbed in the shallow liquid current running through the tank, her eyes closed. A large golden collar was the only ornamentation she wore other than the wires and electrodes; it appeared to encase her entire neck, had no visible clasp, and looked to be considerably uncomfortable.

The only sign that something had happened was the position of his tail; normally moving gently to and fro, it suddenly stopped moving altogether. If someone had been watching him, they would have seen his eyes narrow to a squint and his body lean toward the tank. The woman changed her position, lifting her head and tilting it slightly to the right. His position rigid, he watched as she moved again, this time tilting her head over to her left side.

A small, triumphant smile appeared on his face. "You're mine now," he said softly to the woman, "aren't you?" He watched in amusement as she bobbed her head up and down several times, as if in answer to his question. Straightening to his full height, he gazed into the tank; she raised her left hand and waved at him, then dropped it; her hand floated in the liquid, limp.

"Prince Vejiita!" exclaimed a voice nearby. The child Prince turned his head to give a hard stare to the person who dared interrupt him. The guard walked out of the shadowed portion of the lab, obviously out of breath. Seeing that the person was only a guard, the boy turned his full attention back to the tank. "Prince Vejiita, you father has sent me to find you and tell you that you must attend him right now." Stopping to catch his breath, he looked at the Prince and then at the regen tank.

"Where is he?" Vejiita asked absently, turning back to watch as the woman wiggled her left foot at him and then tried to cross it over her right knee in the tank. It did not work, and pulled some of the monitors off her skin as well, leaving red, raw patches as the electrodes drifted away from her body.

"Let me take you to him," the guard replied, staring as well at the woman. "Is this-"

"Mind your own business, soldier," Vejiita snapped at him, baring his teeth. The guard took a hesitant step back, his fist to his chest, bowing his head. Satisfied that he had cowed him sufficiently, Vejiita turned to the tank once more.

"Don't worry - I'll be back for you soon," he promised Theo with a typically Saiyan grin, his eyes glittering.


The King was not in a favorable mood. To be more precise, any lower class Saiyan who had any business to transact with the crown prayed that today was NOT the day they would have to approach him. Even the Elites wanted to avoid him when he was like this; there was a large potential for vaporization almost clinging to the King, and any Saiyan intelligent enough to detect that aura was also smart enough to stay away from him.

Nappa stood to one side of the room, his brutish face drawn into a scowl as he glowered at the future King and his father. He had already had a considerably large piece of himself chewed up and spit back into his face by the present King for permitting the boy to wander the palace without any supervision. Consequently, the boy had been up to mischief, which in Nappa's mind was good; he needed diversion - he was entirely too serious. Unfortunately, the diversion that he chose had destroyed one of the larger recreation rooms, put quite a few lower class soldiers into the tanks, and actually had killed some of the Elite bodyguard. That would not have been bad in and of itself, but it was the way in which it happened. Apparently the brat had pulled one of the Guardian slaves out of their quarters and had been amusing himself with her when the deaths occurred.

Absolutely stupid, Nappa thought to himself as he watched the pair. And what exactly did the King think I could do to stop the boy, had I known? As an Elite, Nappa had an impressive physique; however, his line had not inherited the innate intelligence that characterized Elites, which left him lacking when it came to strategic planning. In a fight, Nappa had years of training, experience and cunning behind him, but when it came to outmaneuvering the Prince, he was sorely out of his league.

Turning his attention back to the fireworks in front of him, he saw the King towering over the erect form of his son, fury and barely held restraint evident in every line of his body as he shouted, "You took that woman's collar ...OFF? and now there are five Elites dead? This was YOUR idea?" Soldiers standing next to the King silently moved a discrete distance away, keeping their gazes locked on the floor. They heard a loud *thwap* followed by a short grunt and a muffled thud.

Nappa snorted softly. Serves the brat right.

"Baka! We need as many elite warriors as we can get - and YOU decide that they're expendable?" the King snorted, thoroughly enraged. "Get up, brat. I'm not finished with you yet."

A clear voice answered him immediately. "You're a fool not to use them to their full potential," the Prince said icily. "The mental strength of one alone could take the place of a battalion of Elites."

The soldier dared to look up at his sovereign, and saw the King's face flushed with rage. "We don't NEED their kind of help!" the King roared, watching the young Prince, his eyes flashing dangerously. "We need nothing and no one but Saiyans! They are aliens - those creatures are abominations - unnatural beings-"

"-whom you brought here," ouji huffed out at his father, glaring at him from across the room. "Their power is tremendous - and manageable. Linked mind to mind, we can order them to do virtually anything - heal, communicate, destroy ..." He gave Vejiita ou a calculating look. "Didn't Nappa just spare a small planet not too long ago so we could use their technology? I don't see the difference between using machines and using these creatures - both are easily bent to our will."

Impassively Nappa watched the King digest this new piece of information. The elder Vejiita glared in Nappa's direction, his look full of dark promise. You'll pay for that one, boy, Nappa thought angrily, I swear.

"What Nappa did or did not do has nothing whatsoever to do with this conversation," the King said menacingly, turning and striding purposefully toward his son. "Machinery has no will of its own, brat, but those creatures certainly do. So - you believe that you, out of every other Saiyan on the planet, have been able to puzzle out in that puny little brain of yours the mystery that's kept our researchers stumped for years? Well," he snarled, "think on THIS for a while. Very soon we're going to need every single warrior we can muster. That ... Freeza," he grimaced, a distasteful look on his face, "has been pushing me - us - too far for much too long. We are NOT slaves. When we fight," and the light of battle was in his eyes, "we will win. But we will NOT use those - those females - to help us. Not now, and not ever."

"Why?" Vejiita asked coldly, standing and facing his father. "We control them. They're dispensable."

His father looked away, an odd expression on his face. "Nothing is free," he said cryptically. "You pay the price for whatever you use eventually. At one time I thought I wanted their kind of power ... but now," he said musing, "now I want nothing at all to do with it. The cost is too great."

The King turned back and stared at the Prince for a moment. "Nor should you, boy. She almost killed you, didn't she?" he asked suddenly. When Vejiita didn't answer, his father snorted. "It serves you right. Those people wear collars for a reason, brat. Don't be so stupid again." Shaking his head, the King planted his feet and stood directly in front of the Prince, scowling. Vejiita met his father's scowl with one of his own, a black and icy stare. They both had their arms folded across their chests and appeared to be mirror images of each other.

"I can master her and her power," the child insisted, snarling up at his sire.

"You have no idea what you are talking about, baka," his father replied in the same tone. "Don't make me regret not killing you at birth. Nappa!" the King called without raising his voice.

"Sire," Nappa said, snapping to attention.

"See if you can keep the Prince in sight this time," the King said sarcastically, giving him a level stare. "I'm going to allow him to play with his Guardian toy -" and the look he gave Vejiita was pure acid, "- but I want to be notified BEFORE anything happens. And keep that moron Raditz with you. Understood?"

"Perfectly, Your Majesty," Nappy replied, relief breaking over his face and as quickly being replaced by an air of studied cynicism.

The King turned his back on Vejiita, dismissing him. "Feh. Get out of here and send in Naradzuke and Pikurusu. They, at least, can be useful in planning our campaign."

The Prince glared at his father's back, then transferred that glare to Nappa, who simply shrugged his shoulders. Turning on his heel, the Prince stalked out of the room. Shaking his head, Nappa followed him, bowing first to his sovereign.


Ah, it's dark, warm ... safe ...

Time to get up, woman

The warmth beckoned her back into its welcoming arms. She snuggled, feeling secure, that nothing could hurt her here. Indeed, nothing hurt at all, which was curious. A faded memory of horrible pain ran across her mind, but was pushed away. Ah, warmth...

Wake up, woman, we don't have all day ...

Who are you, she thought irritably, go away and leave me alone. Immediately she erected walls around her mind, walls that were smooth and hard and designed to keep the rest of the universe away from her, and went back to snuggling.

No, I won't go away, the voice said, amused. In fact, I think I'll stay right here. Get up.

What in the hell is going on? she thought, rising out of her comfortable spot. Her breathing and heartbeat were increasing with her annoyance and anger at the mysterious voice inside her head. Who are you? How'd you do that?

Open your eyes and see, it taunted her.

Sluggishly she ordered her body to start moving, then realized she couldn't move; at least, she couldn't move very well. Something was preventing her from rolling over. I always sleep on my stomach .. what's the deal with ...

...breathing? She couldn't hear anything, but she could almost feel the wet condensation from her breath trickling around her mouth. And what's this ... in my mouth ... Stark realization hit her. I'm in a regen tank, she thought numbly. They hurt me badly enough to put me in a regen tank. Kami, I hate those things.

Don't blame other people for your own mistakes, the voice chided her. You were the one who decided to pull all that power, not someone else.

That's enough of that, she thought, incensed. She slit her eyes open and felt the familiar sting of what she thought of as the amino fluid; she fought to open them further and focus. There was a large, black, fuzzy object directly in front of her. Blinking, she tried to clear her vision and open her eyes wider. The room started to come into focus; there were lines and tubes snaking around and around the tank, and that thing in front of her ... was a person. A small person ... one who was at eye level with her, peering at her face ... curious, intelligent obsidian eyes...

Now you're awake, the voice said, a hint of cruel laughter in it. Do I look the same through the glass? You seem a bit blurry.

Her eyes popped open all the way and her arms snapped out as if electrified, fingers spread on the ends of rigid hands. With wild eyes, her head slowly swiveled in the thick goo from side to side, desperately searching for something, finally settling on the person in front of her. She started shaking her head in denial, slowly -

...dear Kami it's ... you? oh my god....

As the implication of what she heard hit home she became more agitated, moving her head back and forth, silently wailing nooooooOOOOOO-get me out of here right now! Get me out of here and get out of my mind get out get out OUT OUT-

That's no way to ask your master to do something for you. The thought slipped through her defenses as easily and naturally as a knife through muscle. Try again, but this time try to be polite.

She stopped struggling then and floated, staring, in the tank. Master? Even though the breathing harness was connected to the lower half of her face and the rest of her body was wired with electrodes and other equipment, her expression could have been interpreted by anyone. Sheer, utter, horror shone out of her eyes and shivered through her body. One hand floated up to touch her neck and fingered a wide golden collar, about four fingers in width, invisibly fastened around her throat.

Why, yes, he replied, I'm your master now. As he leaned closer to the tank, she could see that one side of his mouth was quirked up in a sadistic smile. Like the jewelry? It's the largest one we could find, he explained silently, watching her reaction. We couldn't have you running around creating mayhem now, could we?

She stared back at him from the tank, unblinking, floating in front of him. This isn't real, it isn't real, no....

It is interesting that we can communicate without benefit of my touching that thing, isn't it? he continued pleasantly. I don't believe we would have been able to do that yesterday. And you can't shut me out, can you? He smiled at her, a knowing, devilish smile.

Her eyes blinked once. Fuck you, she thought, gesturing rudely at him through the tank. Think all you want at me - I don't care.

Really? he calmly rejoined. Then I'm sure you won't mind if I do THIS ...

...and suddenly her neck felt like it was on fire again. Her eyes rolled up in her head and her body started spasming as if she was going into a seizure. The monitors on the tank started clanging alarms...

...which just as suddenly stopped. Whatever had caused her body to react that way was gone; her heartbeat was dropping back to normal, her respiration rate was decreasing. The only thing that started to increase was her brain wave pattern; the memory of the pain was fresh and raw.

Just something that I figured out how to do after watching you work for a while. I can also do THIS ...

...and suddenly a languid, heavy, pleasant feeling suffused every nerve and pore of her body, forcing each muscle to relax. Pain wasn't even a memory; it seemed that nothing had ever existed before, and nothing would exist after...

...oh dear Kami where did you learn this? she thought despairingly, fighting for control of her own body.

Why, from you, Guardian - I learned it all from you. You were an excellent teacher, especially when you thought you were deceiving me. Fiendishly he taunted her, I can't seem to coerce anyone else ... it only works on you ...

A terrible certainty anchored itself in her soul as she stared at him, powerless to move. ...only ... me? The monitors on the outside of the tank started to blink rapidly, showing a swift increase in all her vital signs as her eyes changed colors, darkening from green to brown, her head pushing against the viscosity of the liquid imprisoning it. Then ... there's no way out ...

Not for you, he agreed silently, watching her struggle. And I'm sure after we've ... explored ... your different talents, we will be able to apply that knowledge to others of your race. Vejiita ouji bared his teeth at her and gave a short, humorless laugh. I'm sure there's a Guardian for every Elite, don't you agree?

Full-blown horror blossomed in her chest at his words and pushed its icy tendrils deep into her spirit. ...a Guardian for every Saiyan ... no, oh no ... Cold, she felt so cold inside; and trapped, she was trapped inside her own head - there was no retreat, no respite. Reality was pressing in on her from all sides, and she felt she was smothering in Saiyan power. As he relentlessly drove her into the granite wall of his total mental dominance, she glimpsed a small, narrow crevice that showed a final, frightening alternative to being his slave. Theo snatched at it, not allowing the truth of what she was doing to penetrate her consciousness.

The analytical part of her brain calculated the volume of liquid in the tank, accounted for the viscosity of the fluid, determined the probable amount of time it would take to drain the tank using normal methods, compensated for what she thought would be faster methods, and was satisfied. Time enough for what I need, and I know what I need, she thought grimly, staring at the Prince through the walls of the tank. And with this, regeneration won't work at all. Thank Kami this thing was built for Saiyans...

And what is it, exactly, that you need? he inquired, obviously overhearing her mental musing.

Why, just to tell you something, master, she thought, deliberately masking her mental tone, flexing her fingers and arms in the liquid, testing.

...and that would be ...

That I'll see you in hell, bakayaro, she sent viciously; then she took her hands, threw them up to her face, ripped the breathing mask away and opened her mouth, swallowing as much fluid as she could, inhaling it as if it were the sweetest of aromas, choking herself.

Loud klaxons immediately sounded throughout the infirmary, bringing medical personnel on the run. "No! No! She'll drown!" cried the doctors, running over to the tank.

"Open the tank!" shouted Raditz, pounding over from the far end of the room, beating on the tank cover. He pulled his arm back, ready to thrust his fist through the tempered glass.

"Stand back! I'll blast her out!" yelled Nappa, powering up.

"STOP, both of you! You can't shoot that in here - there's too much instrumentation, you'll end up killing us all!" Oshinko screamed, running over to the console for the tank. "I'll just-"

Put that mask back on your face NOW or I'll-

She was sliding out of consciousness, but he could still hear her derisive tone, laughing at him. Or you'll what? Order me to live? Get lost, little boy ....

Oshinko started the procedure to drain the tank, frantically punching out the sequence, but it was painfully obvious that it was much too slow - she'd be gone by the time they were done.

No! You're not going anywhere! I forbid you! Extremely angry at her audacity and at himself for not anticipating her move, he called a small ball of chi into his hand and shot a thin laser ray at the top of the tank. It went through the material cleanly, came out the opposite site and zapped into the equipment directly behind the tank and continued through the wall. Sparks flew from the console as both Raditz and Oshinko ran over, beating at the fire with their bare hands.

Theo saw what Vejiita held in his hand, and with her last conscious thought, taunted him again -

...what a loser. You couldn't hit the broad side of a barn. You missed me completely...

His temper flaring, a large blue aura surrounded his body. Snarling, he held his hand up to aim for her head, allowing the chi to collect there and become enormous - when suddenly he realized that was exactly what she wanted him to do. There'd be no question if I blasted you through the head, would there? he realized. He threw his hand down and to the left, and instead cleanly sliced off the bottom third of the tank.

Fluid gushed out like a river, drowning the entire floor. Having no internal support, Theo collapsed in a heap on the floor of the tank, liquid pouring from her mouth and nose. Nappa reached over and yanked the rest of the tank off of its pedestal as the doctor reached her and started her beating between her shoulder blades, forcing more fluid out of her lungs. Huge rasping gasps came from her as her body automatically went into survival mode again - she was still unconscious, but definitely alive.

Vejiita stood over her, his face tight with fury. "Wrap her up in something and take her over to my quarters, Nappa," he said. "Find someplace around there for her to stay, and no, I don't care who you have to throw out. Make sure it's large enough for several people to live there. She's moving."

"But Prince Vejiita!" protested Nappa, gesturing to the woman on the floor. "She's just-"

"Is there a problem with what I just said, baka?" Vejiita inquired softly. "Take her over there, and do it NOW. And get that worthless sensei of hers. He's going to start earning his keep as well."

You don't escape that easily, woman, he thought, looking at her prone form.

Not that easily.

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