Cosmic Crisis 3- A New Enemy
Written by Erin Miller - Scarlet14@aol.com
Chapter 5 - Turn of Events
On the first day of their vacation, after everyone had been successfully awakened, the two families chose to tour the island. They had all dressed the part, choosing bright colors and flower prints. Even Vegeta was wearing a Hawaiian print shirt and a pair of cargo shorts. After everyone had piled into the aircar, they set out to find a place to eat. Bulma spotted a quaint little café on the side of the road, with a straw roof and bare floors, and suggested that they try it.
"Are you crazy?" Vegeta protested. "It doesn't exactly look like decent eating residence to me."
"Oh, come on Vegeta! You have to enjoy the culture here. It's part of what makes the island so unique." Bulma argued back.
"Besides, I hear they have great chocolate covered macadamia nuts here." Gohan piped in. Vegeta perked up.
"You said chocolate, huh?" he asked. Gohan nodded in reply. "Well I suppose we can tolerate it." Bulma smiled wryly. She knew that Vegeta liked chocolate. It was one of the only "Earth foods" that he favored, besides meat. Trunks liked it as well. It must be a Saiya-jin trait.
"Did someone say chocolate?" Natalie said sleepily from the backseat. It was obvious that she had been resting in the back seat, being crammed in between Trunks and Goten, with Bra in her lap.
"I want chocolate tousan!" Bra said joyfully, bouncing up and down in Natalie's lap. She winced.
"Hey, take it easy there, princess." Natalie said, restraining the six-year-old.
"That's what tousan calls me!" Bra declared. Vegeta turned red and tried to think of an excuse to get him out of this one. Before he could, Bulma had pulled in towards the small café and parked the aircar.
"Let's eat!" she said excitedly, jumping out of the car and onto the grassy dirt-covered ground. Everyone managed to squeeze themselves out as well, and the group headed towards the...unfortunate restaurant. After all, a café of such minute scale would have a hard time recovering from the appetite of eight Saiya-jins.
"We need a table." Bulma said to the waiter as she stepped underneath the roof and into the restaurant.
"How many?" he asked. He was wearing a tight, white tank top undershirt and a pair of baggy denim shorts, no shoes. He had dark hair that was messily arranged on his head, which seemed to contrast nicely with his tanned skin. Natalie quickly counted heads.
"Eleven." She announced, before anyone else could get a chance. She was starving, and wanted to get some food as soon as possible. The waiter suddenly stopped everything he was doing and stared at Natalie like she had sprouted a third arm. "Is...there something wrong?" Natalie asked, waving her hand in front of his face. He suddenly snapped out of his state of shock and cleared his throat.
"This way." The waiter said, leading them to the back of the café. He pulled two tables together and brought some extra chairs so that everyone would have a place to sit. As he was leaving, he stared at Natalie once more, almost knocking over another table on his way. When everyone had taken his or her seat, another waitress came to pass out menus and silverware.
"Which island are we on?" Natalie whispered to Trunks, who was trying to unwrap his fork from his napkin. He shrugged his shoulders, apparently not knowing the answer. Natalie then turned to Vegeta, who was sitting across from her, and asked the same question. Instead, Bulma piped in.
"Tousan told me that we landed on the big island of Hawaii." She said proudly. "Later today, we can head to the beach. I hear this is one of the best places to surf in the states."
"Cool!" Goku said, perking up. "Vegeta and I can out-surf anyone here!"
"Kakarotto are you insane? I've never surfed in my life!" Vegeta objected. "But...being the prince of Saiya-jin, I'm sure I could learn rather quickly."
"Well then, who's up for surfing after we eat?" Videl asked. Everyone raised their hands, including the two young children. Soon after, the same waiter that had seated them came to take their orders.
"I'll take the American breakfast special." Bulma ordered. "And my husband here," she said, pointing to Vegeta, "He will take five of the same." The waiter almost dropped his tablet.
"A-and for you?" he asked, turning towards Chi-Chi.
"Oh, let's see here..." she said, scanning the menu quickly. "I'll have the pancake plate, and Goku will take ten Spanish omelets. We'd also like two coffees." The waiter was now seriously exasperated.
"Don't forget about us!" Gohan said, seizing the waiter's attention. "I think I'll take three of the family special."
"B-but, sir, each serving feeds five very hungry people." The waiter protested.
"I know. I'm not very hungry since I had a snack before we came. And...an extra pancake plate for my wife." He finished, placing his arm around Videl.
"And Pan, what would you like?" Videl asked.
"I want oatmeal!" she said happily. Videl looked a bit squeamish, but ordered it anyway.
"Better make that two servings of oatmeal," Videl said to the waiter, "with fresh fruit on the side."
"The three of us will have an order each of the American breakfast special." Trunks ordered for him, Natalie, and Goten. The waiter was trying desperately to write everything down on the tablet before he lost his mind.
"I want ice cream!" Bra ordered.
"Now, Bra-chan, you can't eat ice cream for breakfast..." Bulma said. "You can have that later."
"But I want ice cream!" Bra whined, becoming upset. Her aura flared slightly, only creating enough power to rattle the silverware on the table and create a small breeze, but the waiter had apparently become alarmed.
"Just bring her a kids breakfast plate." Bulma whispered to the waiter.
"Anything else?" he asked, his voice pitch fluctuating as a sign of his anxiety. Everybody shook his or her heads simultaneously. He stumbled towards the kitchen, almost knocking over the same table again. Natalie laughed.
"I'll bet he's going to go take an aspirin." She joked. A few minutes later, a waitress came with glasses of orange juice and cups of coffee to serve them. Natalie stared at her cup intently.
"Eew...I hate pulp." She complained, watching the small pieces of orange float around in her juice. "It makes me feel like I'm drinking in millions of tiny bugs or something." Trunks and Goten looked at her with disgusted looks on their faces and she just laughed in reply.
Back in the kitchen, waiters and cooks were scrambling around everywhere, trying to prepare the large order of food in a limited time.
"I need a dozen eggs over here, pronto!" one cook barked.
"Where's the bacon!?" cried another.
"Someone hand me the cheese grater!!"
"Hey Goten. I'll bet you ten bucks that I learn to surf before you do." Trunks challenged while everyone waited for their food.
"Make it twenty!" Goten counter-attacked.
"I'll bet you both that I'll learn first!" Natalie said, overpowering the both of them.
"You're on!" they cried in unison.
"Goten! I'm disappointed in you!" Chi-Chi said. "Oh, where did I go wrong? I slaved over that boy for sixteen long years, trying to bring him up like any normal child, and now he's turned into a rebellious gambler!" she cried. Everyone looked at her with sweatdrops.
"Chi-Chi, honey, don't you think you're overreacting to all this? After all, they're only trying to have a little fun!" Goku pleaded.
"I'll show you overreacting mister!!" Chi-Chi shouted. Just as she was about to hurl her fist straight into Goku's face, Natalie suddenly doubled over. She leaned down towards the floor, clutching her head and becoming exceedingly dizzy.
"Nat-chan!" Trunks cried, trying to lift her back up.
"Stop! Don't touch me!" she cried, obviously in a lot of pain. Her entire body began to flicker, fading in and out rapidly.
"What's happening!?" Goten cried, looking down at the girl in shock. Finally, Natalie stopped flickering and she stood extremely still for a couple of seconds, and then collapsed. Trunks rushed over to her and scoped her up in his arms. He checked for a pulse, finding one.
"What should I do?" Trunks asked, looking around frantically.
"Take her to the bathroom and see if you can wake her up with water." Goten said, standing up as well. The two boys headed for the unisex bathroom in the back of the building. On the way, they passed their waiter, who took one look at the scene and shook his head in disbelief. When Trunks got to the sink in the bathroom, Goten turned on the water for him and helped his friend hold up Natalie's limp body while they splashed water on her. Finally, after what seemed to be an eternity, Natalie choked and spewed up water. Trunks set her down where she continued to remove the liquid from her lungs. Finally, she stood op and faced them.
"Are you okay?" Trunks asked. She looked down at her hands, which were intact, and back at Trunks.
"I think so." She said. "But I don't know what happened." She leaned against the bathroom stall in frustration. "I think that it might tie in with that vision I had before. But what does it all mean?" she asked, looking at Trunks in hope of some answers. He and Goten looked at each other and shrugged.
"We can check it out after we eat. Come on, let's go back before our food is served." Goten said. Natalie wrung the water out of her hair and tried to make herself look presentable before she exited the bathroom with Trunks following behind. When they returned to the table, everyone had already received their food. Natalie, Goten, and Trunks sat down and looked at their food hungrily. On each plate, there were two pancakes with syrup, scrambled eggs, bacon, fried ham, fruit salad, and toast with jam.
"This looks so good." Natalie said, and dove into the pancakes, devouring them both in a time span of 30 seconds. Trunks went for the bacon, while Goten chose the eggs. Everyone at the table sat and ate heartily, especially the Saiya-jins. Goku had finished five of his omelets before taking the first drink of orange juice, and Gohan was already on the second helping of his meal. Pan, despite everyone else, was enjoying her oatmeal, but she preferred slinging grapes at her uncle Goten, who just shrugged and caught them in his mouth, much to Pan's delight. After ten minutes, everyone was finished, and they all sat back in their chairs and held their stomachs.
"American food sure is filling." Goku said, burping.
"Check please!" Bulma called to the waiter. He walked over, and to his amazement, every scrap of food had been ingested and plates had been scraped clean of all edible residue. He then looked at Natalie with that same, bewildered expression on his face as he handed Bulma the bill.
"What is the matter with you?" Natalie shouted. "Why do you keep looking at me like that?"
"Nat-chan, I think it's your tail." Goten said subtly. She looked back at the long, furry attachment and swung it around in the air like an eager kitten.
"Oh, this?" she asked, continuing to wave it about. "Pretty cool, ne?" she said, looking back at the waiter, who had now fainted onto the floor. Bulma left the money on the table and the group all headed back towards the aircar.
"Next stop..." Trunks started.
"The beach!" Goten shouted excitedly.
"Iie, we have to go back to the hotel to get our swimsuits." Bulma said.
"Hai. Unlike you two," Natalie said, placing her fingers on the torsos of Trunks and Goten, "we didn't wear our bathing suits to breakfast!" The two boys put their hands behind their heads in embarrassment as everyone turned to look at them.
"Well...shouldn't we be heading back now?" Trunks said, breaking the ice. Everyone nodded and crammed their bodies into the aircar again.
"I should have brought two aircar capsules; I can't believe I didn't think of it before." Bulma commented while she zoomed down the road, through the scenic area with lush, green forestry and a cloudless blue sky. They passed a clearing and there was a breathtaking view of Mt. Kilauea, one of the islands major volcanoes.
"Wow, what a sight." Natalie commented, looking at it with eager eyes, like a small child.
"The Hawaii Volcano Observatory is on the rim of Kilauea Crater." Bulma explained, flipping through a tourist guide. "We should go check it out sometime."
"Not now. Surfing is definitely number one on my priority list!" Trunks said. Natalie punched him in the ribs.
"Just be patient, Trunks-kun. We have over a week to spend here. The ocean won't dry up before you get a chance to surf!" she said.
"Yes, mother." Trunks said sarcastically.
"Look here, you two aren't even engaged yet and already you're fighting like a married couple!" Goten joked, much to Natalie and Trunks' displeasure. They looked at him with discontent on their faces and Goten immediately backed off. A few minutes later they had reached the hotel, and everyone raced in to get his or her respective swimsuits. Bulma parked the aircar and called out to everyone.
"After you guys get ready, you can meet us on the beach. There's no need to waste energy flying the aircar when the beach isn't even a mile away!" Bulma instructed. She then realized that nobody was listening to her and eventually gave up. <I swear it's getting worse every day...> she thought to herself, sighing.
Inside the hotel, the five kids headed for their room to change. Trunks and Goten had already come prepared, so they simply waited for the girls to finish. Bra and Pan were already in the bathroom, so Natalie resorted to desperate measures.
"Now, Trunks, Goten...I'm trusting you two. Turn around, and don't look!" she said, holding her bikini in her hands. They shrugged and turned to face the door while Natalie changed into her swimsuit. In the middle of her undressing, Bra burst out of the bathroom and gasped in shock.
"Natalie's naked!" she cried.
"I am not naked!" Natalie retorted, covering her torso with one of Trunks' shirts. She quickly ran behind a plastic palm tree and slipped into her top piece. When she was finished, she threw the shirt on top of Bra. Pan then emerged from the bathroom as well, wearing a red two-piece bathing suit with frilly trim and a little skirt to cover her rear. Bra was wearing a simple, green one-piece with the Capsule Corp. logo on the upper chest region. Trunks and Goten stood up and slung towels over their shoulders.
"Ready?" they said in unison, turning to Natalie.
"Hold on..." she whined, digging through her suitcase. "I can't find my sunscreen..." Various items flew across the room as Natalie searched for her SPF 30. Then, just as before, she fell to the floor, clutching her head. Her body began to dematerialize right before her eyes as she stared at herself in horror. Trunks and Goten stood in mortal shock, not knowing what to do; not reacting. Natalie would go in and out of convulsions as her body struggled to keep its stability. Finally, her form solidified and she fell to the ground. There was a sudden knocking at the door, snapping Trunks and Goten out of their trances. Goten ran to open the door, revealing an impatient Vegeta and Bulma.
"What's taking so-" Vegeta broke off as he saw Trunks standing over Natalie's collapsed figure. His skin started to prick up and beads of sweat formed on his forehead. It seemed that the same force that was controlling Natalie's fits of temporary distortion was also affecting him. No sooner, Trunks started to morph as well, becoming hazy and faint. Finally, it all ended and the two Saiya-jins stood in place, clutching their chests and panting.
"N-nani?" Bulma said, taking a step back in terror. Goten rushed over and steadied her.
"Easy, Bulma-san." He said. "We need to figure out what's happening to them."
"H-h-hai." She stuttered. Shaking, she stepped forward and held Vegeta in her arms. He clenched his teeth in anger.
"I can...handle myself..." he said.
"No!" Bulma insisted. "Let me help." She said, and helped him over to the bed closest to them. Trunks managed to drag Natalie and himself onto the other bed. "Where's Goku-san when you need him?" Bulma said.
"What do you need tousan for?" Goten inquired.
"I need him to teleport me back home so I can gather some resources." She said. "I have a slight hunch, but I need to know for sure."
The two headed out towards the beach to find Goku, while Natalie, Vegeta, and Trunks all rested in the hotel room with Bra and Pan watching over them.
"I wonder what happened, Pan-chan." Bra said, watching her father. Pan just shrugged her shoulders, being too young to understand the situation. Natalie slowly awoke from unconsciousness and sat up on her elbows. She noticed that Trunks and Vegeta were also out cold, and looked at Bra in question.
"What happened here?" Natalie asked, sitting up completely in alarm. "Where's Goten?"
"They went to find Goku." Bra said.
"They?" Natalie asked.
"Kaasan went too." Bra explained. Natalie leaned over Trunks and watched his chest rise and fall with each breath. She rested her head on his chest and listened to the steady rhythm of his heartbeat. She felt warm and safe, and she closed her eyes slowly, allowing herself to relax. Just then, Bulma, Goten, and Goku appeared inside the room with several technical pieces of equipment in stow. Natalie opened her eyes quickly and sat up.
"Kakarotto-san?" she said. "What are you doing here?"
"Oh, Bulma-san wanted me to teleport to Capsule Corp." he replied, looking over at Bulma, who was already setting up her equipment on top of the cedar chest. Goten stood over her shoulder and watched, not making any sense of the figures and graphs that she was pulling up on the screen.
"Just as I thought." Bulma said, typing vigorously on the keyboard.
"Nani?" Natalie said in confusion. Bulma looked back at her with deep concern in her eyes.
"It's a time paradox."