Cosmic Crisis 3 - A New Enemy
Written by Erin Miller - Scarlet14@aol.com
Chapter 3 - Arrival in Paradise
Trunks woke suddenly as the airplane touched down onto the runway, jolting all of the passengers. Dr. Briefs turned the engines down and turned up the rear thrusters to slow the plane down.
<We arrived!"> Trunks thought to himself. He looked at the clock on the wall of the dark room, realizing that it was only 2:30 in the morning, but that meant that in Hawaii it was probably somewhere around 5 or 6:30. Hopefully, their hotel was nearby. He didn't want to sit down any longer than he had to. Suddenly, the lights came on in the cabin and Dr. Briefs' voice came over the announcer. Trunks ignored him and focused on his surroundings, looking for Goten and Natalie. He rubbed his eyes and looked around, realizing that they were lying right behind him.
"What the -!" Trunks cried when he saw his friend practically wrapped around the girl. A pang of jealousy went through him as he broke them apart. "Get up! Get up!" He urged, shaking Natalie. She slowly opened her eyes and stretched, blinking a few times and then rolling over on her other side once again, placing her arm around Goten absentmindedly. Since this obviously wasn't working, he woke up Goten instead.
"Go away, tousan..." Goten mumbled, swatting Trunks away with his hand. Trunks was becoming irritated, and decided to use desperate measures...sort of. He simply picked Natalie up in his arms and left, leaving his friend behind. Trunks opened the door that led to the cabin and headed into the aisle. Vegeta immediately appeared in front of him.
"And just WHERE have you been?" Vegeta hissed demandingly.
"We were just in the back room, dad." Trunks replied sleepily, walking past his confused father and towards his seat. Just then, an angry Goten staggered out of the recreation room and looking at Trunks with a psychotic look in his eyes. Trunks almost dropped Natalie when he saw the boy, and took a few steps backward. Suddenly, Goten burst into uncontrollable fits of laughter.
"You..." he broke off, laughing. "You actually fell for that!" Goten said, rolling on the floor. Trunks gritted his teeth and growled, turning away and looking for his bag. He was tired, and wasn't in the mood to mess with his friend. Natalie finally stirred, opening her eyes and looking around confusedly. Trunks set the girl down and began to load the bags into his arms. Natalie grabbed her carryon bag and turned to walk off the plane.
"Wait." Someone called to her. Natalie spun around to see Trunks stumbling down the aisle with about five bags in his hands. She sighed and grabbed two from him and continued on. She was so tired that she didn't notice the sudden drop and almost fell when Gohan put his hand out and stopped her from falling.
"Watch out." He said, making sure that she had regained her balance.
"Oh. Thanks." Natalie said, stepping down the stairs and off the jet. As soon as she reached the cement pavement of the runway, she dropped the bags and sighed with relief. The sun would be coming over the horizon shortly. A cool breeze blew off the ocean and stirred Natalie's hair, blowing it into her face. It was a very calm, peaceful scene with dark skies and a perfect temperature. Suddenly, someone shoved a leu (singular form of "lei") over her head.
"Aloha!" a dark skinned Hawaiian woman said, welcoming the Sidra-jin girl to the island. Natalie, who was overcoming the initial shock, forced a smile and turned to wait for Trunks and Goten. Soon, Vegeta emerged with Bulma following. The Saiya-jin prince grumbled as one of the Hawaiian women greeted him.
"Must I wear this stupid necklace?" Vegeta complained to Bulma. She just slapped him on the back.
"Of course you do! It's tradition! Now act pleasant. We'll be at the hotel shortly." Bulma replied.
"Already I don't like this country." Vegeta grumbled, glancing at his mate. She was having a bit of trouble carrying all of the baggage that she had brought, but the fact that Vegeta didn't even offer to carry it for her made it even worse. Seeing the situation, Natalie cleared her throat and nudged him, gesturing towards Bulma. He just rolled his eyes and grabbed the luggage from Bulma's hands, much to her relief.
Soon, Goku and Chi-Chi came out, followed by Bra, Pan, Goten, Gohan, and Videl. Everyone was quite tired and there were a lot of bags to be handled. Fortunately for the women, the guys were all quite capable of taking the load. Natalie wasn't going to resort to that though, and was quite fine carrying her own bags. Bulma pulled out her container of capsules and selected the large aircar to take them out of the airport. When the car had appeared, everyone loaded their bags onto it and took their seats.
"Hey, where's Tousan?" Bulma asked, looking around for her father. Dr. Briefs came out of the airplane and stood on the steps, waving.
"The misses and I are going to tour the states while you're vacationing!" Dr. Briefs shouted. Bulma sighed and waved goodbye to her parents, since there was no arguing with them at this hour. She turned to get into the aircar, but it was already full! Natalie, Pan, and she hadn't even gotten a seat.
"Oh well. Looks like we'll have to improvise." She said to herself. "Girls just find somewhere to sit. I don't care if you have to sit in someone's lap...we're all going to fit in this aircar!" Bulma said, jumping into Vegeta's lap, much to his...delight. Pan jumped into Gohan's lap, and Natalie stood, trying to find a seat.
"Come on, Nat. We have to get going!" Goten said to the girl. She reluctantly stepped into the car and sat in Trunks' lap. Not that he minded.
Soon, everyone was off, blazing through the air towards the hotel. The night air was warm, and the early morning sky was filled with bright stars. Natalie took a deep breath and leaned back on Trunks, resting her head on his shoulder.
It took ten minutes to reach the hotel, but it was worth it. Everyone shuffled out of the car as Bulma called for someone to get his or her bags. When the doorman had everyone's luggage onto a cart, the two families made their way into the hotel, wanting nothing more than to get some rest before the sun rose.
"Okay." Bulma started, walking back from the check-in counter. "We have four suites on the 16th floor. Who's with who?" she asked. It was obvious that the couples wanted to share rooms, which meant that three rooms were already taken. They were then left with Trunks, Goten, Natalie, Bra, and Pan.
"There is NO way I'm getting stuck with them." Trunks said, gesturing to Bra and Pan, who in turn shot him dirty looks.
"We don't want to stay with you anyway!" Pan retorted, running to her father. "I'm staying with daddy!" Gohan shook his head vigorously, knowing that if Pan slept in his room, Bra would surely tag along, and he wanted a decent night's rest.
"The five of us will take the extra room." Goten said, reaching for his bag. It was obvious that he wanted nothing more than to get some sleep, and he wanted to settle things quickly. Bulma and Vegeta exchanged glances and nodded in agreement.
After the room situation had been sorted out, Vegeta just shrugged his shoulders and headed for his room. Everyone else did the same, dragging his or her exhausted bodies into bed. Trunks, Goten, Natalie, Bra, and Pan shuffled into their room, plopping their things down into a corner. There were two king-sized beds in the room, along with sofa, two dressers, three end tables, and a big screen TV. Natalie let out a sigh of relief and curled up in the bed on the far side of the room while Trunks and Goten took the one closest to the door. Pan and Bra snuggled next to Natalie, much to her distaste. By the time everyone had fallen asleep, Natalie had already tried 6 or 7 different positions in the bed. She couldn't fall asleep. Something was nagging at the back of her mind.
<I'm just paranoid...> she thought to herself as she glanced at the clock on the nightstand. She had been tossing and turning for almost 45 minutes. Not only that, but she was extremely frustrated that she couldn't quite figure out what was bothering her. It wasn't like the feeling she got when Orion arrived. She shuddered just thinking about that. She considered waking Trunks to talk to him, but resisted and got out of bed. She paced around the room, almost knocking into a table, since she wasn't familiar with the layout. <Chill out, Nat you're going to scare yourself.> she thought. If she weren't careful her ki would rise and wake everyone sensitive to it. She walked over to her bag in search of her CD player. She unzipped the top and began to rummage around inside, when she realized that the suitcase wasn't hers. It was Trunks'.
"Oops." She whispered out loud. She attempted to zip it shut, but it was stuck. "Oh, what now!?" she cried in desperation, but hushed herself for fear of waking the others. Something was blocking the zipper. She formed a very dim ball of light using her ki, and untangled the object. She picked it up and inspected it. It was made of cloth; a shirt of some kind. She looked closer, and realized that it was her shirt! "What the..." she trailed off. It was the shirt that she had lent him on one of the first days that they trained together. She remembered that she gave it to him to wipe his forehead. It smelled like her shampoo. A smile formed on her lips as she thought about Trunks keeping this shirt without even washing it. With that finished, she put the shirt back in place, zipped the suitcase shut, and returned to bed. Just as she settled down and got comfortable, she remembered. "Damn I forgot my CD player."
Chapter 4 - Day One
Morning came too soon for Natalie who woke with Bra's leg strewn across her chest and Pan's head resting on her stomach. She rolled her eyes and turned to look at the boys, who were still sleeping. Trunks was sleeping on his stomach, with one arm over the edge of the bed, while Goten slept on his back on the other side. She had managed to fall asleep soon after the incident last night, occasionally waking up in the middle of the night for no reason. That was normal for her, though. She was uncomfortable, but she didn't want to disturb the girls.
<How do I manage to get myself into these situations?> she asked herself, looking desperately at the ceiling. She could hear moving about in the rooms next to her, signaling that the others were beginning to awaken as well. Suddenly, Goten mumbled something in his sleep and rolled over, which caused Trunks to stir as well. However they still weren't awake. Pan moved around, digging her elbow into Natalie's ribcage. Natalie cried out involuntarily, waking Bra and Pan in the process.
"Are we there yet?" Pan said sleepily. She looked around the room, obviously having forgotten where she was. Bra did the same thing.
"Where's tousan?" she asked.
"He's in the room down the hall." Natalie replied. Then, she suddenly devised a great plan, and a wry smile spread across her face. "Do you want to go see him?" she asked. Bra nodded. "And I suppose Pan will want to come too." Natalie suggested. She scooped the girls up and opened the door to their room quietly. "You see that door right next to us?" Natalie asked the girls as they stepped into the hallway. They nodded in reply. "Bra, your tousan is in there. Why don't you two go wake him up? I'm sure he'll just love to see your faces first thing in the morning."
"Okay!" Bra said joyfully. Natalie zoomed back into the room and jumped into the bed. Within seconds she could hear Vegeta's cries of annoyance. Natalie laughed silently. She was good. Suddenly the door to their room swung open and Vegeta appeared in the doorway. His hair was messed up and he was wearing only a pair of boxers. Natalie quickly shut her eyes and pretended to be sleeping.
"Who did it?" Vegeta asked, with a hint of insanity in his voice. Natalie feigned sleep and sat up in bed, since nobody could have slept through that yell.
"What's going on?" she asked, adding drowsiness to her voice. She was so good at acting, especially if her life was on the line.
"Don't play innocent, girl. I'm aware of what you did." Vegeta replied. Trunks opened his eyes and sat up on his elbows.
"What's the matter dad?" he said, yawning sleepily. Suddenly his eyes shot open "And why aren't you wearing any clothes!?" He cried.
"Your girlfriend over there had the bright idea of sending these two brats into my room to wake me up!" Vegeta growled.
"Oh, chill out Veggie-chan. It's not like you were asleep anyway." Natalie said, trying to calm him down.
"Don't call me Veggie-chan!" Vegeta cried. Natalie snickered and cowered slightly, to show that she was sorry. "Just for this, I'll put you in charge of waking the others. Including Kakarotto." He said, smiling evilly. Natalie's mouth fell open.
"No, please. NOT Kakarotto!" she cried. "You know how he is in the morning!"
"Do it." Vegeta said in a commanding tone, and then shut the door swiftly. Natalie sat back in bed.
<Kuso. I should have predicted something like this.> Natalie thought to herself. She turned to Trunks for suggestions, but he was trying to smother his laughter. Goten rolled over and opened his eyes, obviously having heard the whole thing.
"Good luck, Nat-chan. You'll need it." He said, smiling sympathetically and sitting up in bed, running his hand through his black mass of hair. Natalie shifted positions, looking out the window.
"I wonder what time it is." Natalie wondered aloud. A quick glance outside told her that it was sometime around midday. She reluctantly dragged herself out of bed and trudged to the bathroom to freshen up. In the middle of washing her face, Trunks walked in, toothbrush in hand. Natalie rinsed her face and dried it with a towel, throwing it at Trunks on her way out. "I suppose I might as well get this over with." She said, and dug through her bad for something to wear. She came across a pair of nylon surf shorts and a white t-shirt. "This will do."
"Hey Nat-chan." Goten said sleepily, throwing his feet off the side of the bed. She looked at him questioningly. "Can you hand be a shirt?" he asked. Natalie realized that he was only in his boxers, having obviously thrown his clothes off the previous night. Not that he looked bad. He and Trunks both were some of the most built guys her age, a fact that she admired with ease.
"Sure" she said, dropping to the floor to search through his bag. She noticed that all of his clothes were perfectly folded and neatly tucked into the suitcase. "Goten I'm impressed." She said. "I didn't think that you had this much talent." She continued to joke.
"I don't. Kaasan packed my things for me." He admitted freely. Natalie let out a quick laugh and continued to carefully search among his things. She finally located a plain white shirt and tossed it to him, proceeding to head for the bathroom to change. She succeeded at kicking Trunks out while she threw her clothes on quickly.
"I guess this is it." She said, emerging from the bathroom and throwing her dirty clothes next to her suitcase. "Wish me luck." She said, and with a wink, left the room. She ventured down the hall, passing Vegeta and Bulma's room, since they were surely awake after the previous incident. Next was Gohan's room. She didn't know this couple very well, considering that she preferred her own generation. She knocked on the door lightly, but without reply, she tried again. Finally, a very sleepy Videl came to the door.
"Hai?" she answered, trying to focus on Natalie's figure. Gohan was in the background, lying flat on his stomach, with half of the covers kicked off of him.
"Uh...Vegeta-san wanted me to wake everyone up. I'm assuming we have plans for the day." Natalie said, unsure of how to act.
"Oh. I'll wake Gohan. Arigatou." She said. Natalie nodded in return as Videl closed the door.
"Now this isn't so bad." Natalie thought consolingly. She then reached Goku's room. "Yet..." she said, and cautiously knocked on the door. There was no answer. She tried again, and still received no reply. After a few more tries, Natalie gathered her courage and tried the doorknob, which happened to be open. She walked into the dark room very slowly, almost afraid of what she would find around the corner. As she got closer, the room came into view. Goku and Chi-Chi both were asleep. Natalie approached the bed, leaning over Goku and debating on whether to tap him on the shoulder or hand. She finally nudged him in the side with her index finger. He didn't respond. Natalie repeated her gesture, this time a little more forcefully. Goku stirred, rolling onto his back.
"Just a few more minutes, Chi-Chi. Come on, get some sleep." He muttered in his sleep. He suddenly reached out for her and grabbed her around the waist, bringing her to his chest and causing her to lie on top of him. He wrapped his other arm around her and held her tightly. Natalie, who was still in shock, didn't know what to do. Obviously he didn't realize that it was her...at least she hoped. She tried to escape his grip without waking Chi-Chi, for fear of how she would react. Unfortunately, Goku held on tight and his arms wouldn't budge.
"Kakarotto!" she whispered harshly, trying to awaken him. She knew he was a heavy sleeper, however, and her attempts proved to be futile. Finally, left with no other choice, she buried her elbow deep into the crevice between his ribcage and his abdominal muscles. He yelped and sat up in bed, causing Natalie to be thrown off of him and onto the floor. She stood up, dazed. Goku looked around the room in confusion, finally locating Natalie on the floor.
"Natalie! What in Dende's sake are you doing here?" he asked. Natalie gathered her thoughts, trying to think of a way to explain herself.
"V-Vegeta sent me into wake you up." She muttered.
"Well what did you go and hit me for? You could have just tapped me in the shoulder." He replied. Natalie's jaw dropped, for that was what she did in the first place. Chi-Chi woke, slowly sitting up as well.
"What's going on here?" she demanded. Natalie, growing frustrated, stood up and explained.
"What happened was I came in here to wake you guys up on Vegeta's orders, and Kakarotto here tried to suffocate me with his deadly grip!" she said, taking a deep breath when she finished to replenish her oxygen supply. Chi-Chi looked at her husband.
"Goku! What did you think you were doing?" she said.
"Honest, Chi-Chi, I have no idea of what she's talking about!" he cried in protest. "I-I must have been sleeping, or something."
"Natalie, are you alright?" Chi-Chi asked. Natalie put her hands on her hips and nodded.
<Damn that Vegeta.> she thought to herself. <He's going to pay for this!> She exited the room and stormed down the hall towards her room. When she opened the door, she found Trunks and Goten changing clothes. Shocked, she jumped back and slammed the door shut, but then came to her senses. <They're just my friends. They're wearing cover-up.> she repeated to herself, and then opened the door once more. Trunks and Goten looked at her with confused looks on their faces.
"Nat? You look...irritated." Trunks said, stepping towards her.
"I am irritated. Your tousan," she said, pointing at Goten, "almost tried to kill me."
"Nani?" Goten said, looking even more confused. Natalie explained the situation to the two boys, who tried not to crack up.
"So, you think it's funny, huh?" she said, folding her arms and shifting her weight. "Well I'll show you what's fun-" she broke off. Suddenly, a force overcame her and she fell to the floor. Everything happened in slow motion. She had a flashback to the past, a past that she couldn't bring herself to recognize. Yet, somehow, it all felt familiar. There was a young girl standing in a long corridor. Her face was covered by a shadow. All of the sudden, something grabbed the little girl and pulled her into the shadows. Suddenly, Natalie was jolted back to reality when Trunks shook her violently.
"Natalie! Nat-chan!" Trunks cried. Goten stood next to him with a worried look on his face. Natalie's eyes focused and she looked around, placing herself in reality. "Natalie! Are you okay? What happened?" Trunks cried.
"I'm not exactly sure..." she said. "But I think...that it was trying to tell me something."