Forward to Saga 4 >
(September 15, 2001 A.D.; 9:10am; Canton, Ohio)
It was not another 50 minutes later when Vegeta had decided to start on a project involving the many scouters he and Goku had gained from their battle with Oyatsu. Vegeta sighed to himself, not being too big on losing to someone who was using the body of one of his weaker allies. He had to give Oyatsu credit, he sure knew his stuff when it came to Goku and Vegeta's secrets. Oyatsu had taken all his time over a 30 or more year period to learn everything he could from the shadows, and it had almost paid off. If not for the combined efforts of Teresa, Nina and... yes, even #18, Vegeta sourly admitted to himself, he, Goku and their Misfit allies would've suffered a serious, and possibly permanent defeat. He also felt a lot better off when he found out even Goku, Buu, Piccolo and #17 had been taken for fools the same as he had.
However that was in the past for the time being. Vegeta grumbled as he wired a few disconnected wires together inside of a Purple overclocked scouter he had started working on. He himself had admitted that scouters would not be too useful when he or the others were holding back their powerlevels, but it offered more than merely a reading of someone's power. He smirked to himself, remembering how he and Nappa had even found Earth in the first place because of the scouters. Radditz had gone to Earth, intending to recruit Goku to their side, which ended up in a battle, fatal for both brothers, skewered on Piccolo's Makankosappou beam. Even though Goku came back within 11 months, and Radditz nearly 20 years, it was that battle that prompted Vegeta and his ex-partner to come to the Earth, for a wish on the Dragonballs.
"These damned transmitters have been both a curse and a boon to us in the past." he sighed to himself, referring to the vocal transmitters which he knew had been present in all scouters since the days they had been introduced to Frieza and his planet trade.
Frieza and his family had realized that as good as being able to see one's powerlevel was, giving the apparatuses the ability to allow communication had made them much more valuable. The scouters allowed communications over several light-years, as Frieza himself all the way at his base planet had learned from Vegeta's battle on Earth with Goku of the Namekian Dragonballs, leading to the great conflict on the green planet... the same battle which finally confirmed the legend of the Super Saiya-jin, and the defeat of Frieza.
Vegeta knew that if he could reactivate the transmitters in Oyatsu's scouters, he, Goku and their Misfit allies could use them for various forms of communication without having to use the more primitive 'phones'. Vegeta wasn't a big person with using phones of any kind. He had been so used to using the scouters since he was younger, and the idea of the phone was just too awkward to him, even when Bulma and her family had cellular phones, which were more portable, but much more fragile than a scouter.
His head perked up a moment, but then he grumbled with a sigh, "Just Kakarott in the backyard." he said to himself.
Goku had earlier offered to help Vegeta with his project, but the Saiya-jin Prince claimed he could handle it fine on his own, and said that Goku had little if any real experience handling an actual scouter, and that Vegeta had come upon times he could fix a salvageable scouter before, hence why he didn't need Bulma's help for it. He had told Goku to go out and train on his own, within the limits of what he could do for the time being.
He growled silently. If there was one thing he really hated Oyatsu for though, it was the damned "Durty Durt Dur" curse he had placed over a forty mile radius. He and Goku, along with about any other Misfit he knew that could utilize a Super Saiya-jin form could not currently transform for about 10 to 12 hours. Oyatsu had directly hit them with the curse during each of his individual confrontations with the groups of Misfits. Dan was the only one who could transform completely, since Oyatsu had invoked the curse before he managed to unearth Dan's ability to transform as well.
Dan... dammit! Just how many of these people are Saiya-jin anyways?! Where are they all coming from?! he thought deep to himself.
He knew Alex, Vernon, Jason, Clint and now Dan could transform. He knew Goku and Radditz were Saiya-jin already, but it was the other five who made him wonder. Although Oyatsu admitted to them that Dan wasn't even a half-breed, he claimed Dan still had the gene that allowed transformation. And so far, Clint had not proven to even have a drop of Saiya-jin blood, not to mention that creepy tinge of green in his hair when he transformed...
Outside the house, Goku and Alex were partially lounging around in the large yard that now basically connected to their houses. Goku had been doing light training, and Alex was in and out of doing a small kata, and lounging around himself. Although he wanted badly to train seriously and get stronger, he had no luck transforming to Super Saiya-jin or Super Saiya-jin 2 since he had been freed from Oyatsu's bottles. He growled at the thought. Although Dan himself told him that Alex would probably be able to transform sometime after 6 that evening, he was still a bit impatient about it.
Damn that sneaky asshole Oyatsu! He's almost as bad as Jackass! Except I don't think Jackson would be able to plan something this complex for us. Alex growled mentally.
He was not happy he had been defeated so easily. He swore if it had not been for that damn curse, he and/or Paula would've easily stopped the shapeshifting possessor. Between one of the two, Oyatsu would have not stood a chance. Although he wouldn't admit to Paula he'd need help, at least definitely not to her face. His Saiya-jin pride was the primary reason for that little detail. Alex believed he alone should be able to defeat the enemy he fights, and not have help from the others so much.
As for Goku, he was in deep thought. Not being able to transform either was a little hard for him to get used to. He realized he probably couldn't train all too well without going to full power. Oyatsu had definitely if nothing else at least delayed their training for a short amount of time. Not being able to use anything but base level was frustrating, but at the same time, it gave the experienced Saiya-jin a nostalgic feeling in his heart. He began to think back to the simpler days when he had never even knew he was of an alien fighting race. He remembered of the times he lived with who he had believed to be his grandfather, the elder Son Gohan, and how up until he had gone Oozaru for the second time in his life that they had lived happily in the Paozu Mountains.
He reflected violently on that thought... he never liked the Oozaru form, despite at one time having his tail and being able to use it. He had learned in his first battle with Vegeta of how Saiya-jin became Oozaru, or Were-Apes at the sight of a full moon, much akin to the legendary Werewolf of Earth. He realized back then it had been he, and not a different monster who had accidentally crushed his grandfather to death when he had been younger. He shed a silent tear. He had still not been able to find his grandfather while dead again to apologize to him about that fatal night. Despite his seven-years between the Cell and Majin Buu eras, he had never found his grandfather, or he had been being trained so much that he could not find other time to look1.
However he suddenly snapped out of his nostalgic thoughts when an ingenious idea smacked him upside the head.
"Of course! That might do for a training method!" he said to himself. He looked over and noticed Alex had gone back to doing his kata, and had not heard his declaration.
I wonder if he'll remember or know of this ability from that show about us. Goku asked himself.
He bent down slightly, and tensed his muscles. He focused calmly, not having tried to use the technique he was preparing to do in such a long time. A technique he had mostly retired after he started to master the Super Saiya-jin levels. His aura began to flare up, and Alex looked over with slight curiosity, but he mistook it as another attempt of Goku's to focus energy into a transformation.
Goku's eyes narrowed quickly, "KAIOKEN TIMES FIVE!!"
That had gotten Alex's attention, as he looked over to see Goku's aura instantly turn a blood-red, as it began to pulse erratically.
"Shit! The Kaioken?! How could I forget about that?!" Alex said, wanting to smack himself over the head, as he realized he probably would want Goku to teach him that as well. Alex sensed that Goku's powerlevel had climbed dramatically, but it was lower still than Vegeta's powerlevel when a Super Saiya-jin 2, so Alex had guessed he was at a Super Saiya-jin 1 1/2 status instead of 2.
Goku smirked to himself, as he realized he was holding firm control of his Kaioken x5, "I can go up to five. Let's try ten... KAIOKEN TIMES TEN!!"
Alex sensed on in astonishment, as he felt Goku's powerlevel soar again, and the aura around the older Saiya-jin's body began to look more wild, yet firm at the same time. Alex sensed that Goku was only slightly weaker now than he normally would be at a Super Saiya-jin 3 status.
"Damn Goku, that's fuckin' impressive! You can still use Kaioken moderately well after all these years!" Alex complemented as he tried to get in a bit closer.
"Thanks Alex, but I'm not quite done yet. I'm only at times ten. I could go to times twenty before I learned Super Saiya-jin." Goku replied, and Alex gasped in shock.
"OH SHIT. I better get back a bit!" Alex quickly jumped back nearly 2 or 3 yards, and Goku bent down a couple more inches.
"KAIOKEN TIMES TWENTY!!" Alex gasped in a mix of glee and horror as he felt Goku's powerlevel skyrocket further, and he could swear Goku's powerlevel would have probably breached one or two billion by now, more than that of what he believed becoming a Super Saiya-jin 4 could do for Goku if he could use it at this point.
He looked over at Goku, who now looked like he was a little more stressed. He then recalled while Goku could go up to twenty times with a Kaioken, he didn't use anything above ten very often and usually only sparingly. Goku then realized he wanted to see if he could do anymore before he gave out. "KAIOKEN TIMES TWENTY-ONE!!"
Alex gaped on in surprise as Goku's ki flared slightly more erratically than before, but he realized as well, "He just surpassed he could do against Frieza on Namek! He must've wanted to see if he could do it for the sake of doing it. Yeah... that's Goku alright.." He then watched as Vegeta had walked out of the house, with a Purple overclocked scouter plastered over his face, looking on at Goku with an expression of shock.
"1,766,100,000!? Kakarott!? How're you doing..." but then he realized what his fellow Saiya-jin had been doing, and could help but smirk, "So you never lost the ability to use that overrated multiplying power of that Kaio I see. That powerlevel might seem impressive, but I know you can't hold it for too long, not without a lot more training." Vegeta replied.
Goku looked over, "I know that Vegeta, but I wanted to be absolutely sure I could still do it the way I used to." He then relaxed as he finally released all the excess energy, and powered down to regular base level.
"84,100,000." Vegeta then stated when he noticed Goku's powerlevel had finally stabilized. He then scanned himself, "83,700,000. Pah! You're still stronger than me in base, you fool." he grumbled, a bit jealous of the 400,000 difference between them.
Alex looked over though at Goku, "Goku... um might I ask you something about the Kaioken?"
"Dammit Kakarott! I bet I know what he's going to ask too!" Vegeta interrupted.
Alex scowled back, "If you do, what's the damn problem?"
"As I said, the Kaioken is an overrated technique. In my opinion, it has too many weaknesses for it to be an effective battle saver." the Saiya-jin prince argued back.
"Goku sure used it to humiliate you in your first battle, if I recall!" Alex snarled back with a raspberry, making Vegeta grumble.
"Don't remind me of that." he replied, "But his friends were the reason he ended up beating me, not the stupid technique."
Alex smirked, "Yeah, but I know Goku can use times ten with little drain on himself now, so eventually if you keep using it, you must be able to get better with it."
Goku chuckled, "That might be true Alex, but that ability comes with experience, which we still outdo you with by far at the moment. If you want to learn the Kaioken, I don't mind teaching others how to do it, as long as they actually care to ask me for confirmation, but I doubt you're going to go higher than five without getting killed for a long time, the same for all your other friends."
Alex grumbled at that remark, "Whatever you say Goku, and yes, I do want to learn how to use Kaioken. Maybe, just maybe I will one day be able to personally prove Vegeta wrong myself."
Vegeta smirked, "It's going to be years before that will even think of happening, brat, so I hope you're ready to wait a very long time."
Goku looked to his older ally and asked, "So are you finished with your project yet?" Vegeta narrowed his eyes slightly as he pulled another Purple overclocked scouter out of his pocket, and tossed it over to Goku.
"Kakarott, put this on, and fly off about a mile away or so, I want to test something." the prince asked, as Goku caught the scouter.
Goku put it on his face, and pressed the button. He had noticed he really was at 84.1 million, that Vegeta really was at 83.7 million, and Alex was around 32,500 now. "Alex, before I go, you're at thirty-two and a half thousand degrees now. You apparently healed well, because I last remember you were around 28 thousand according to Radditz."
Alex smirked, "Sweet, I forgot for a bit since I'm Saiya-jin, I get a lot stronger when I heal from a bad injury."
Vegeta grumbled impatiently, "Kakarott, test, scouter, now."
"Sorry, sorry." Goku replied sheepishly and quickly flew off north about a mile, about to the point he was at the Giant Eagle grocery store on West Tuscarawas Street. He then stopped moving, apparently to signal to Vegeta to start whatever test he wanted to. He noticed several more powerlevels gathered a little east of Alex and Vegeta's own, most scaling in or around 20,000.
"Devin's gang must still be deciding to get in some amount of training. I forgot, most of them don't have transformations, so the curse doesn't really ruin their day too much." Goku replied.
He then suddenly heard Vegeta's voice in his ear, "Kakarott! Kakarott are you there?!"
Goku then spoke out, "Um, yeah I'm here Vegeta. Why do I hear you when you're still over by Alex?"
He was surprised to hear Vegeta reply back, "It means my handiwork paid off. Remember when you and the Namek first fought Radditz, and you managed to defeat him. He mentioned his scouter had a vocal transmitter in it."
Goku then perked up, "Wait I understand now, you were working on the transmitters, getting them all working so we can communicate better, didn't you?"
"Correct, Kakarott. Now that I know that overclocked scouters have transmitters in the same vein as normal scouters, I can wire up the other 137 of the overclocks we got in order to create a more efficient communiqué between us." Vegeta replied, a bit impressed Goku had figured out his idea so fast.
"That's great Vegeta! I almost forgot the scouters could work like walkie-talkies!" Goku replied.
"Yes... now that you mention it, this reminds me when our sons got a set of walkie talkies and they would blab to each other all night when they should've been sleeping." Vegeta remarked, referring to 8-9 years ago, when Goten and Trunks had gotten into the walkie-talkie business. Being such good friends, they claimed they wanted to keep in touch more often, so Bulma had bought the two a pair of walkie-talkies, but it was one of this situations Vegeta wondered if he could've avoided if he had been there himself, as the two kids ended up keeping him awake on various nights with their chatter.
Goku on the other hand, was a little interested and returning to his neighborhood, since he knew Alex would probably want a scouter of his own soon, and not to mention he probably would want Goku to try to teach him the Kaioken soon. He picked up off the Giant Eagle roof, and flew back south to meet his two friends.
Meanwhile, the newest member of the Misfits had decided she would try to gather up the other fellow women of her new group of allies. #18 had decided since she was going to start off by finding a good shopping center that she should probably at least try to take Nina along with her. She had gone to Nina's house a short time after she and Radditz had gotten settled in from earlier, and spoke up with Nina. Radditz had heard in on this, and said for Nina not to worry about him, and that he would either go to Devin's group, which had apparently decided to keep training, or go over to see Dan, Teresa and Heero, all at where Dan's house was probably located. He took off to the air and flew off, deciding to find Dan's group first to talk to them. Nina had decided that she probably deserved a break, and a chance to get to know her newest ally better, and agreed to go with #18, who had suggested they go to Mellet Mall, or Canton Centre Mall first. Nina warned they probably wouldn't find much there, as the condition of the mall had been deteriorating since she had first arrived in Canton herself, but #18 mentioned about not knocking it until they tried it.
However Nina had realized that Paula had been talking to her the day before at McDonalds about wanting to go shopping for stuff to spruce up her new house, and she had suggested to #18 of bring her along. She had thought about going to get Teresa as well, but she realized with the havoc that Oyatsu caused that Teresa probably wanted to keep a vigil on Dan for a while to make sure he didn't have any aftereffects from his possession.
It had only took them about 10 minutes to drop by Paula's house, and convince her to stop meditating on her bed and go with them. Paula sighed, realizing her place still needed remodeling, and had gone with the other two girls and had arrived at the mall, not realizing Goku had been near the area only about 40 minutes ago. As they entered, #18 and Paula looked around curiously, never having been in this mall before. Nina had grumbled though, having been here at least 3 different times in the past.
"So where exactly should we start?" she asked, a bit impatiently.
"What's the main company for fashion stores around here?" #18 asked.
"GAP I think." Nina replied, "But I'm not sure there's one here anymore. As I said, this place has been losing quality since mid-2000."
Nina had then decided to walk the three of them over to where she believed there would be a fashion store. Although they did not find the store they had been originally looking for, #18 had spotted a store that she wanted to look at. As she walked in, she frowned at Paula and Nina, who didn't follow her in.
"What're you two waiting for?" she asked.
"No offense #18, but I don't need new clothes. I got some back in Tokyo a couple weeks ago." Nina replied.
Paula looked over, "I don't care about those types of clothes. I'm here to find collectables. I'll meet up with you later #18."
#18 shrugged, "Okay then, your losses." she then walked in, leaving the other two to talk a little.
"So exactly what are you looking for anyways?" Nina asked Paula, as they walked over to a store near the west side of the mall, which Paula had pulled them towards upon seeing it. When Nina looked inside of it, she found many plush animals where in the window.
"There, that's more of what I'm looking for." Paula replied, staring specifically at the teddy bears inside the store.
"Plush toys?" Nina asked.
"Trust me, I've learned the usefulness of a good teddy bear in battle2. Although that's not the real reason I want them. I've collected them since I was a little girl." Paula replied, as she walked inside the store. Nina nodded, understanding this. She felt Paula was luckier than her, for at least the other girl had a normal enough life to have some kind of hobby. Nina's hobbies were more mystical, and not material like Paula's.
Paula had quickly found many exotic looking teddy bears, and even a few other non-bear plush toys she had grabbed on the way through the few aisles in the store. After about 5 to 10 minutes of looking, both girls had finished their buying. Yes both. Apparently Paula had found Nina one or two plush toys that actually got the older winged girl's attention. Paula paid the meager $34.73 for all the animals, and the two of them walked out, and Nina saw over at a store called Kay-Bee's Toys, a place she knew some of her younger friends went to in their lives.
"Look at that place, Paula. That's one of the places the others liked to go when they had been younger. Lots of video games and other little toys. I know Clint came here a few times. He even came here once with me to check on this place and the nearby bookstore." she had told Paula.
"Clint doesn't strike me as a bookworm though." Paula replied.
"Not like a 'geek'-like bookworm. I mean he used to go there to buy gaming magazines and strategy guides. Alex got a couple of his from here too if I recall." Nina replied.
"How many of them like to play video games anyways?" Paula asked.
"Pretty much all of them do. Clint, Vernon, Devin and Alex I know for sure play a lot of games. I'm not so sure if Virgil has any though. His mom is very strict with him, because he likes to act like a fool in school." Nina replied, then slightly cringing at the accidental rhyme she made in that statement.
"Nina, I know most of you guys aren't the highest on the social chain, but... Jackson makes me cringe when I think of him. I can't see how someone like him can be so filled with hate." Paula replied.
Nina frowned again at the mention of Jackson's name, and explained to her a bit of the odd triangle of contempt that she and Alex had formed between them and Jackson. Paula was a bit shocked to learn that Alex had had to use a wheelchair at some point or another, and was appalled with Jackson's backstabbing, but she just couldn't understand why people, least of all Jackson could hate her simply for her wings.
"I don't hate your wings. I think they have a sense of odd beauty to them." Paula had told her after that, and Nina suddenly chuckled at her, and explained that her friend Rinpoo had apparently said the same thing about her wings in the past when they had still been getting to know each other.
Paula was happy to know she hadn't been the only one with that thought, and she then wondered about Oyatsu and the events earlier of that day. She didn't understand just why she suddenly shifted to those thoughts. She wondered if Oyatsu might have had some kind of connection to Jackson. She didn't understand why, but it lingered in her mind.
She then asked, "Nina, do you think Jackson might have something to do with Oyatsu?"
Nina furrowed her eyes a bit, but replied, "No. Jackson would not be connected with someone like Oyatsu. I saw his true form Paula, he would've been shunned by Jackson just the same because he appears to be a kind of cat in his true state. That alone isn't what would get him shunned, it would be the fact a talking cat would be a 'freak' in that asshole's eyes."
"I see. I had to ask at least." Paula replied.
"So is there anything else you need to get?" Nina asked.
"Well, I agree with you about the condition of this place. It's not what I deem the greatest." Paula replied, in fact witnessing a group of 3 random idiots hanging around the water fountain about 20 feet away, harassing people as they passed.
Nina looked in her direction and caught sight of the idiots, "I think I recognize a couple of those clowns." she stated and then realized something, "Oh boy. #18's gonna probably get harassed by those guys when she comes looking for us. Maybe we should get to her first. I don't want her fighting with one of them, she'd kill them easily."
Paula nodded as the two of them quickly walked over, and past the small group of idiots, ignoring their cat calls, or in one case, an insult directed at Nina's wings, something about making a good hunting trophy, which made Paula growl slightly. She almost wanted to turn around and chew the bastard out for saying that, but she knew better than to start a fight, especially when her enemy stood no chance against her. She didn't like to promote needless violence anyways.
She did whisper at Nina though, "Man, that one guy's a total jerk."
Nina shrugged, "Meh, I've learned to just shrug off their insults. Even the hunting trophy one didn't really bother me. I could kick all three of their asses with all my limbs, including my wings tied. I'm sure you could too, except you don't got wings of your own."
Paula chuckled at that. They soon reached the fashion store, but #18 had not come out just yet. They did spot her inside though, carrying about 20 bags of clothing.
Paula looked on with a perplexed expression, "Does she really need that many clothes?"
"I just remembered, that #18 is a big shopping freak. I haven't actually watched a large amount of the Dragonball series, so I forgot the extent of her fashion craze." Nina replied, a bit shocked herself. The two younger women decided to sit on a couple of benches, but Paula had been looking silently back and forth between #18 and the jerks at the water fountain, now harassing a few more people as they passed. Something about their antics was making her uneasy for some reason, despite the fact none of them were really paying attention to her or Nina anymore.
Soon, #18 walked out of the store, and walked up to the other two women. She looked at their bags, "So you two did get something after all." she then smiled giddily and held up her many bags, "Well, this should be enough for about a month. Where do you two want to go next?"
"First off, do you even know where you're going to live around here?" Paula asked, just a little curious if #18 had thought of a place to live.
The cyborg girl frowned for a moment, realizing Paula made a good point, "Maybe I should've thought this over just a bit more."
Nina sweatdropped, "Well, if you want a suggestion for a place to live for a while, try near the parks east of here. There are some decent houses you can rent, provided you have the money."
#18 smirked, "Money won't be a problem. Unlike my brother, I tend to keep my money on me at all times. I still got at least 6.4 million Zeni left from the 26th Tenkaichi Budokai. Being able to blackmail Mr. Satan can be quite helpful when the opportunity arises."
Nina and Paula sweatdropped at her remark, but decided not to ask her more on the subject for now. Nina just wanted to get out of the mall. Although the insults of the jerks at the fountain and others like them weren't a big deal to her, the fact many of these groups lashed out violently at anyone prideful enough to retort was the real reason she felt the mall was losing its' quality. Although Canton was an interesting place, the fact that gang members liked to roam various places made it dangerous in places for people with more or less normal power to tread around now-a-days.
However, Nina's day was about to get interesting. One of the jerks at the water fountain had noticed #18 walking out of the store. Although they had not immediately called over to her, they had noticed her talking to Nina and Paula, and it had gotten their attention in full, especially after Nina heard one of them say to his friends that he swore he had seen #18 somewhere before.
Oh crap. I think one of those clowns recognizes #18 from the Dragonball show. I'd better get ready to hold her back from killing one of them. Nina thought to herself.
However, she soon heard them talking among themselves, and she picked up a couple of lines that made her reevaluate her thoughts. Apparently they had concluded she, Paula and #18 were just in costumes and going to some party later on. She sighed in relief when they didn't comment much further on the subject.
She then realized, They probably think my wings are fake or that I'm on stilts, unlike Jackass does. I probably should tell Paula and quell her anger at those three so she doesn't dwell on this. "Paula, don't worry about what that one idiot said about my wings. I know why he said it now. They think we're all in costumes." Nina spoke up.
"Costumes?" #18 asked, "What're you two talking about?"
"Those three guys at the water fountain behind you are usually jerks, and they like to harass people who walk by them. We went past them on the way over here, and Paula and I heard one of them insult my wings, but it turns out he thinks they're just props." Nina answered.
Paula sighed, "I guess I could forgive that, but why don't they recognize you two as being real anyways?"
"Well, it's only been about 2 weeks since the merger occurred. Most people in Canton, and other parts of the world probably haven't put two and two together like the three of us and our other friends have. That's why Dusty and his own gang have the advantage over them, since they realize the potential in the merger, and most other people don't. Hell, I don't think Teresa or those Al-Qaeda operatives had known anything about the merger or our powers when all that happened until the 11th."
#18 chuckled, "They think I'm just some fan dressed up as myself. That's very funny to think about. Too bad those goofs don't realize the truth."
"Well, if you two don't mind, I'd like to get out of here before one of them possibly wisens up. We don't need to have these gangster jerks trying to train like us in order to capitalize a death grip over most of the other people in this city." Nina replied.
Paula nodded solemnly with agreement, "Indeed."
#18 sulked, "Fine fine... we'll go, but I hope you know of a new place to go, because I want to look around some more."
"Yeah yeah, I know a much better Mall anyways. It's about a mile or two north of us, so it's not a long trip." Nina replied, as the three girls got up and began to walk to the front exit, wisely avoiding anymore contact with the three jerks at the back water fountain. As soon as they knew they weren't being scrutinized, they took to the air and flew off northwards, Nina leading the way...
At Devin's vacant lot, he, Steve, Dwayne, Virgil and Dusty had continued training for the time being. Clint had briefly shown up to let them know he was taking training sessions off for the day, since he couldn't transform until around 6 pm that night, and also because he had other things he claimed he really needed to do. Heero was absent because he was still over with Teresa, Dan and Radditz over at Dan's house. Virgil was bored almost to tears, having no mallet to run around and chase people with, having destroyed it on Oyatsu's head earlier. Devin had mentioned that he would try to get his mallet reconstructed later on that day.
Devin had realized that without Heero and Clint around, there wasn't a serious reason to train much with each other that day. It had been more of a conversational day than a real training day. Devin was still curious about his energy sword attack that he had wounded Oyatsu with a while back, and what these anger flashes had meant. Dwayne and Steve were chatting and doing their own form of practice, being about even with each other, and Dusty and Virgil were simply chatting and throwing blasts at the ground. Well, Dusty had more of been showing Virgil how to use his ki for attacks instead of just movement.
However, only about an hour ago had Devin sensed the massive powerup Goku had undergone through his Kaioken sessions. Devin was perplexed when he first sensed Goku's power rise. He knew that his curse would last until 7-8 pm that night. However, he soon realized something.
"Son of a bitch! Now I understand!" he cried out loud at himself.
"Understand what?" Dusty asked.
Devin blinked at Dusty in disbelief, but then he remembered, "You don't sense that, do you? You just had to go run off before Goku would've taught you how to sense ki." Devin said, reminding Dusty of that, making him grumble.
"Hey I said I was sorry about that! I got competitive with Vernon when he challenged us to that race, so did most of us!"
Devin shrugged, "If you say so, but what just happened is that Goku's power just skyrocketed three different times. At his best, he was well beyond his usual maximum as a Super Saiya-jin 3."
"How? That curse is still affecting him, isn't it?" Dusty asked.
"He's using Kaioken you goof!" Devin replied.
"Come again?" Dusty asked, not as aware of the nature of the Kaioken ability.
"It's a multiplying ability for powerlevel. Goku must've gotten desperate to do something, and thought of the Kaioken. I remember he used to use it until he first became a Super Saiya-jin. He only used it one other time after that, at least if that really did happen." Devin spoke, referring to a part on DBZ where Goku had used Super Saiya-jin and Kaioken together at one time to fight a warrior in the afterlife known as Pikuhan3.
"Wait, an ability that can multiply your powerlevel?" Dusty was perplexed at this. Realizing he didn't have a Super Saiya-jin form, he figured learning this might help.
"Well yes, but it's not that simple. Inexperienced fighters can't use it too much, as it puts stress on the body in order to multiply powerlevel. Goku could get it up to twenty-times before he stopped using it, but he didn't use higher than ten for long periods of time." Devin stated.
"You think we could learn it?" Dusty asked.
"Probably. I'm gonna go ask Goku if he'll teach me. If you want to ask him, come along with me." Devin replied.
"Should we tell the others?" Dusty asked.
"Might as well. They'll never leave us a moment's peace if we sneak this kind of training in behind their backs." Devin said, although he had mixed opinions on telling Clint or Virgil. Clint could already get a lot stronger without Kaioken, and teaching it to him would likely make the gap between him and Devin much greater.
Virgil on the other hand... Devin didn't think he had the necessary training to understand it. In fact, Devin was curious if anyone else could learn the Kaioken. He recalled how the move's very creator, the North Kaio, had never actually mastered the move himself. He didn't understand that logic, but it didn't matter at the moment.
Devin called over at Steve and Dwayne, asking them about wanting to learn the Kaioken. The two wrestlers perked up at this opportunity, and went over to him, and Dusty had managed to bring Virgil over, mentioning of Kaioken. Although Virgil was skeptical of such a power, he figured he needed all the chances for more gaining power and strength that he could get. The five of them took to the air and flew over towards Alex's neighborhood.
It was then Devin realized where he had to head and who else would probably be waiting there for him, "Aw shit! That assclown's probably gonna get Goku to teach him Kaioken as well!" he grumbled, referring to Alex.
Although Clint had not missed Goku's massive powerup by any means, he did not really care at the time. He already had a good feeling what Goku had done, and knew he could just go and ask the older Saiya-jin about teaching the Kaioken another time. He had bigger things on his mind. After the attack of Oyatsu, he had grown worried of more attacks from future enemies. It was enough to make him realize that he needed to do a few various things of interest in the case he might not live through the next major battle. He had remembered on the 11th of the fact that Canton had almost been turned into a massive crater by the experimental bomb of Al-Qaeda.
Although he had learned from Dan and Nina that Oyatsu had sent Al-Qaeda after Dan, and had even supplied one of the operatives with the Concussion Pulse Gun, there had been no mention that Oyatsu had anything to do with the development of the experimental bomb Al-Qaeda had made Teresa wear under her uniform that day, and it worried him greatly. This was another reason he had decided to take training off today. He was going to explore Canton, his old hometown.
His other friends were slightly aware that Clint had actually used to live in the Canton City School district until in December 1999, when his grandfather, Melvin Kliner, had a series of heart attacks, which had led to his ironic death on the 39th birthday of his father. It had not been long after that when Clint and his family and two dogs had moved to the wilderness area of Fohl Village, a quaint and peaceful trailer park which his grandparents had lived, inheriting their trailer. Clint did not initially take too well to the change. Despite the fact that his parents welcomed the change in atmosphere, Clint was a city-person, and he had found there had been little to keep him busy outside of his house after he moved in down there.
From there on, he rarely left his house when school wasn't in session, due to the lack of interesting places and people to talk to. It was through his computer at home and later his new friends at Canton South that he would keep from losing his mind in the boredom. Another reason he hated the move was that he had his own share of friends that used to live in Canton, but he found most of them had moved on or left Canton some time after he had moved. In fact, he learned the house Nina and Radditz were currently living in was the same house a good friend from kindergarten had used to live before he moved out. He did not hold resentment to either of his two fellow Misfits for it, but it made him a little depressed to learn most of his friends in town had moved on.
Clint had originally come to Alex's house on the 3rd to learn how to use his ki simply for the purpose to fly. Clint had always wanted to learn how to either fly or teleport at will, even over battle-based superpowers. He knew if he could learn how to fly, the problem of travel would lessen, and he wouldn't make his parents so worried trying to head into town, which had been 5 to 10 miles north of his trailer. Although when Al-Qaeda had attacked, and he personally had to save the day in the end from the experimental bomb, his strange ability to become a Super Saiya-jin had kicked in, and had been the reason he was still breathing after that day.
He had realized that perhaps he was destined to fight seriously after all, and had gone with Devin's group to train to get to know his newer friends better, and to train his newfound abilities. However, after his near-fatal encounter with Oyatsu, who had used Dan's body and powers to defeat him and most of his friends, he realized just how unpredictable Goku and his friends had really had it in the past, and it taught him to be a bit more appreciative to what he still had left. That had been one reason he broke off for the day to explore Canton.
Although Clint had only seen a glimpse inside the city limits of random and unknown areas of Canton a couple of times since his move, he was no fool to the fact that violence and crime had began to worsen up, even before he had left his original house to his second one, the house prior to his current trailer. He knew that his own original neighborhood had its up and downs, but Clint felt he would never give it up for the world. He had sworn to himself one day that if he had ever gotten the necessary amount of money that he would repurchase the first house he lived in. However, it had made him wonder about the condition of the other two houses he had lived in at one point. He had been exploring near the western side of the city, along the route from Canton Centre Mall, to the westward city of Massillon.
He also knew the abandoned stadium Buu had found was located somewhere out here, and had been trying to find it to check it out when thoughts of his old homes jumped into his head. He had also stopped by the mall a while back, but ironically, he had arrived only 5 to 10 minutes after #18, Nina and Paula had left. Although he sensed the latter two girls' powerlevels, he didn't really give it much thought, and figured they had been shopping there. He knew Nina had been to Canton Centre Mall three other times. He had even gone with her one of those times to check the mall out over a year ago.
He realized he needed to explore more towards his original neighborhoods, and even the area near Nina's house, where his one friend had used to live. He could only wonder if the condition of Nina's neighborhood would be anything like what he remembered it when his friend lived there. As he began to fly northeast, he took a look over some of the area below him, including sections of Stadium Park, one of the parks somewhat close to his original homes, and part of one of the major highways. He then managed to find the 30th Plaza, which was only a little east of Nina's neighborhood.
After examining a few of the stores of interest, he picked up his pace and headed back west and reached Nina's neighborhood. As he examined it, it didn't appear to be too different in living conditions compared to the last time he had been there almost 4 years ago. He had managed to spot Nina's house, and looked over it with a grim feeling of nostalgia, and it made him wonder what Nina and Radditz had done to the place since his friend had moved out. He landed in the front yard, and knocked on the door, but to his dismay, all he had heard was a distant meow. He then smacked his head, forgetting the fact Nina and Radditz were both at different locations.
"That must be Mr. Oscar." Clint commented to himself, referring to the meow.
Nina owned a cat named Oscar, who was the subject of many a joke connected to Alex and Vernon. Nina had a time or two shrunk the two boys down when their antics got too great to put up with, and one time on the plane to Tokyo, she had joked about feeding them to Oscar, being the size of mice. He soon realized though that both of the main occupants of the house were gone. He sensed out for Nina and Radditz, and found Nina was still with Paula, apparently to his northwest somewhere, and Radditz was well south and a bit to the east, close to Dan, Heero and Teresa's own kis.
Clint was about to just give up and head over to one of his old neighborhoods, but then he remembered something.
"Wait a second! Radditz mentioned he was growing a sensu plant in the backyard. I should go make sure if it's doing anything!"
He walked over behind the house, and into the backyard. As he remembered before, the backyard was composed of a hilled drop-off only about a foot from the back of the house, which he and the friend who lived here before would roll down in play in the past. He noticed near the bottom of the hill there was a small area where the ground had recently been dug up. Clint walked over to it and checked it carefully.
"I guess this is it. I don't really see anything here though. I guess Piccolo was right... I guess we're gonna have to be careful for a while."
He then turned back toward the hill, walking up, and back into Nina's front yard, and then he looked over in the direction where he believed his second neighborhood was. He was the closest to it at the moment, so he would stop by first. He picked up into the air and lifted off towards the southwest. As he left, he was not aware that the patch of dug up ground he had been looking at was not where the sensu plant had been placed, and under the shade of one of the nearby tress, a small vine was beginning to emerge out of the ground, concealed mostly in the shade to prevent looters and vandals from finding it.
As he flew around, he caught site of the old Video Safari he and his family would use to go during their times in Canton. He decided he had time to spare, and landed there, slowly entering the door. The clerk did not recognize him, but he didn't really recognize her either. As he looked around the Video stores, he recognized a few areas were in similar places. But he noticed most of the SNES and Genesis games in the front had been replaced by Gamecube, Playstation and Dreamcast games, and occasionally a shelf of Gameboy games in some form or another. He looked around towards the back, where other arcade games were, and as he was heading back, he heard a voice that made him jump up 5 feet.
"Clint-man! Strange seeing you in these parts!" the voice had said. Clint turned and caught sight of his art-teacher Mr. Christopher Bergert.
"M.. Mr. Bergert? What're you doing up here?" Clint asked, not really aware of where many of his teachers lived. He realized there was probably no school on that day, since it was Saturday, so Mr. Bergert was probably running around, doing various things.
"You probably don't know, but I live nearby." his art teacher replied in a normal voice. Although Clint was worried about Mr. Bergert being curious about his absence from school, the art teacher apparently made no attempt to show it.
"Where exactly do you live?" he then asked his art teacher.
"19th street, 640." Mr. Bergert replied.
Clint realized, That's not far from Nina. I wonder if she's known about this.
Mr. Bergert looked at him though, "Sorry if I spooked you Clint-man. I didn't expect I'd see you around here. What brings you here anyways?" he then asked.
Clint mentally began to sweat bullets. His parents were not with him, and he didn't know how to drive, not that he had to know in his own opinion since he could now fly anyways. But he couldn't just tell Mr. Bergert he came here by himself. The art teacher would probably get suspicious, and despite the fact Mr. Knight knew more of less the truth about Clint and the Misfits, Clint himself had asked his principal friend not to tell anyone else about their training if he could help it. Mr. Bergert did not know of their training, and he was worried that something bad might result if he told any of his teachers, including Mr. Bergert.
He then came up with a slight lie, "I came here from Nina's house. She doesn't live too far from here either."
Mr. Bergert's eyes perked up, "Ah yeah, I remember she lives on 29th near the plaza. She's brought me over there one time."
Clint sighed mentally, and replied, "I'm kinda exploring a bit down Cleveland Avenue, since I haven't been in this neck of the woods in over 2 years."
Mr. Bergert looked at him with a look of understanding. He knew Clint used to live in Canton before he moved, so he understood Clint was nostalgic, "Don't let it bring you down Clint. You're getting out into the world well enough right now. You'll be fine." Clint was a bit confused to why he had said that, but decided it was just Mr. Bergert trying to be nice.
"Well, I didn't really see much of interest. My kind of stuff isn't really here anymore." he said, pretending to be a bit disappointed at the changes in the selection in the store.
Mr. Bergert apparently bought it and replied, "I guess I'll see you later. Good luck. See you again in 2 weeks."
Clint replied, "Alright then. Later Mr. Bergert." He then left the store, and walked across an intersection, and quickly dashed down a street, making sure Mr. Bergert might not have decided to follow him, and then he rose into the air.
He then thought to himself, "Wait... 'In two weeks'? What did he mean by that?"
However, before he tried to make an attempt to fly too far, he realized something else. He was close to a school he had gone to before he was in high school. Lehman Middle-High School. He was only about half a mile away, and knew where to go from where he was.
"Maybe I should check with them. I haven't gone back there once since I graduated from there to go to Timken and then South." he said to himself, and quickly took off in the direction of Lehman, landing there within less than a minute. He landed at the back entrance, an entrance with gave him great nostalgia again. He remembered how he would wait here for the morning bells to ring along with hundreds of other students. He walked around the perimeter of the school, even as far as to survey the fenced in football field in front of the school. He had more memories of times with his other friends down in the field. He had even had a few minor wrestling matches with one particular friend, and remembered how much more in shape he had been as a kid.
He missed being a kid, no matter the fact he was a lot more powerful at the current time. As he looked over the field, he heard a voice talking behind him. Although the voice was not directed at him, it rang through his head like a bell that would not stop. He looked over to the voice, and saw a tall, thin man with a white business shirt, a small tinge of gray in his hair, and closely cut hair. He soon remembered this face, even if he looked a little older. He walked in slowly, as not to disturb him as he was talking to another man near a pair of cars. It sounded like both were teachers who had stopped by the school to get some papers before they went back home.
After the two men had stopped talking to each other, the second had gone off to leave, and the first, the one Clint apparently recognized, looked to him, "Can I help you?"
"Mr. ElFaye?" Clint asked.
The man blinked once, "Yes, I am Mr. ElFaye. Do I know you?"
"Ted ElFaye, right? Or Sam?" Clint asked.
"Ted. You know of me and my brother? Hmmm... something about you seems familiar." the man replied.
"Mr. ElFaye, it's me, Clint. From your 6th grade math and acting classes!" Clint spoke up.
Mr. ElFaye looked at him and then his eyes showed realization, "Clint Walker? Is that you?"
"Yes, it's me. I'm still doing alright. What about you and Sam?" Clint asked.
"Sam has been doing well up at his Technology Class at Timken, and I've moved over to a recent technology class of my own here. Although I still prefer math slightly more, it's been a wild ride." Mr. ElFaye explained to him, "What about you? Sam told me he lost track of you about 3/4s of the way through 2000."
"I had to move south. My grandfather died, and we inherited his trailer in Fohl Village." Clint explained, "I go to Canton South High School now. Although it's nice, I miss Timken, and I miss being up here in general."
"I understand what you mean. I had to move a couple of times in my life. I still miss Alliance, but I'm still plugging away. You been doing well down in South?" Mr. ElFaye asked.
"Well, things have been interesting, but I've also been a bit depressed, with what happened on Tuesday and all." Clint replied, looking down. Mr. ElFaye sighed, knowing exactly what Clint meant. Nearly no one wouldn't understand, considering Tuesday was the 11th.
"So what were you doing up here anyways?" Mr. ElFaye then asked. Clint decided he was going to start explaining a little of his recent weeks, including of how he had met some of the recent Misfits.
"Let's just say I've had to respond to a large role in life, something I'm not sure me or any of my new friends are ready for. We recently escaped a serious scathe today." he told his former teacher. Mr. ElFaye looked a bit confused, but before he could ask Clint another question, he suddenly saw his former student look southwards.
Clint narrowed his eyes, What in the world? Paula's coming right my way! Oh crap, what does she want?
Clint looked on as he saw Paula nonchalantly flying in close to the area, her form easy for Clint to recognize. Mr. ElFaye managed to see her flying their way, and was surprised.
"What in the world? Is that person... flying?" he asked.
"Yep... she's flying... I can fly now too. I know her as well, she's one of my friends that I recently met, but what's she doing up here?" Clint responded with his own question at no one in particular.
Paula flew in closer, and quickly spotted Clint. She had been heading back to her own home when she had sensed Clint less than 2 miles north and slightly west of her. Curious to his presence, she had decided to just go to him immediately before landing at her house, and she had flew towards Lehman. She had been around this neck of the woods once, but she didn't really know much about the area. She had seen Clint in the school's front parking lot, talking to someone she had never seen before. She soon flew in near and landed about 4 feet away.
"Hey there Clint. What brings you up here?" she asked in a normal voice, not wanting to sound too curious.
Clint looked over at her, and sighed, "If you must know, I was exploring around Canton, and happened to come in nearby. I met up with an old friend, a teacher from 6th grade. Paula, this is Ted ElFaye. Mr. ElFaye, this is Paula." Mr. ElFaye nodded at her, and she did the same back.
"An old friend I see. Someone from back when you lived up here I take it." Paula inquired.
"Yeah, I was up here looking around since I realize with all that we had to deal with this morning, I might not have another chance to look around." Clint replied.
Paula narrowed her eyes in slight annoyance, "Oh, don't talk like that. You're not going to die anytime soon."
Mr. ElFaye of course had little clue of what she meant and asked, "What do you two mean by all of that?"
"Let's just say a lot more stuff then what happened on the 11th has recently occurred in our lives, plus that of our other friends I mentioned. We each separately battled an enemy who was after us. We both lost in our fights due to the guy's trickery. If it had not been for another friend of ours, we would've both probably died, as well as many of our other friends." Clint explained.
Mr. ElFaye was still confused, "Well, if you... say so."
Paula looked over to him, "Let's just say the world has changed in ways you may not believe. I don't know how to really explain it."
Clint looked back to Paula, "So why are you here anyways? You're not here to baby-sit me are you?" he looked at her with a slight hint of annoyance.
"No, actually I live nearby, and I sensed you less than a mile away from my house, so I wondered if you might have been looking for me, or some other thing, like this." Paula replied simply, ignoring the glare.
"You... live nearby?" Clint asked, realizing he had never really tried to ask Paula of where she lived, nor she never really told many of the others.
"I live a few streets south of here. I was heading home from Belden Village Mall when I sensed you nearby, and I decided to make sure things were okay." Paula explained.
Clint was curious now. It sounded like Paula was living close to where his second house was located, "Ironic. I used to live in this area as well. Both of my old houses were south of here."
Paula had only vague knowledge from Nina that Clint had once lived in Canton, but neither girl really knew the exact locations of his houses. Mr. ElFaye had taken the time the two Misfits were talking, and had pulled out a pencil and paper. He tore off a written note and handed it to Clint.
"If you want to talk to me in the future, here is my phone at home. I'm sorry, but I must be going for now. I'll talk to you later Clint!" he said.
Clint looked over at him, slightly nostalgic, "Thanks Mr. ElFaye, I'll talk to you later too."
He watched his former math teacher get into his car, and drive off out of the parking lot, and down the western street, leaving him and Paula standing in the middle of the parking lot.
"So now where are you heading anyways?" Paula asked Clint first.
He looked over to her, "I'm gonna go see what's happened to the house I lived in nearer to here. As I said, it's only a few roads down from here."
Paula smiled, "I guess I'll come with you. I'll stop by my house and drop my stuff off if we pass it."
Clint looked at her with a thoughtful look, "You sure you want to?"
"Yeah, I don't got much else to do. I just left from Belden. #18's a bit too much of a shopaholic, and Nina's heading back to her house, so I broke off and came back." Paula replied.
Clint chuckled, "I was just at Nina's house about 15 minutes ago, and I think it was just her cat there. Radditz is down by Dan and Teresa right now I also noticed."
Paula looked up, not realizing that Clint could sense ki, "Wait, you know how to sense ki?"
"Yeah I do. I know, I shouldn't have flown off earlier on the 3rd, but I later learned to sense energy on my own. I'm working on masking it, but I think I might be finally getting the hang of it." Clint replied.
Paula smiled sincerely at him, "Good job Clint."
"Um, thanks." Clint replied, a bit taken back, as he picked up into the air and began to float off towards where he believed his house was. Paula did similar and trailed him from behind as the two left the Lehman school premises.
Clint had slightly veered east as he flew southward, with Paula still a few yards behind him. He looked over the busy intersection of Shorb and 12th street, as he continued moving south.
He had moved south a little more when Paula called out, "Wait, we're about to pass by my place."
Clint stopped and turned around, watching as Paula landed on the sidewalk in front of a light-yellow colored house, looking to be about 2 stories high.
When Clint had actually looked at the house in full, his heart nearly stopped cold, and he flew over slowly towards the house, his eyes agape, and stammering, "Yo... you live... here?"
Paula looked to him, confused, "Yeah I do, why the stammer?"
She then saw Clint intensely looking the house up and down from the front, and then walking around the side of the house and looking it up and down. She followed him curiously, as he then rounded back behind the house, where a small garage was close to it. However Paula did not drive, and the garage was just open with nothing inside of it. Clint looked inside of the garage, the agape expression still on his face, as he looked one final time at the backside of the house up and down.
Paula cleared her throat to get his attention, "You okay Clint?"
Clint looked over to her, and then to her surprise, "You think... I... could go inside with you for a bit?"
Paula raised her eyes a bit, and scratched the back of her head with embarrassment, "I guess, if you really want. The place isn't really spruced up much since I got it. The upstairs hasn't been used in many years." she replied, "And most of the downstairs rooms are vacant."
Clint replied, "I don't mind really. I'm not one to be a judge of people's lifestyles."
Paula smiled, "Very well, I guess we'll go in through the back, since we're already here." she walked up to a transparent-patched door and opened it. When the two of them looked inside, Clint noticed two more doors right inside.
Paula noticed him looking at one, "That leads down to the basement, the one over here leads right into the kitchen."
Clint turned to her, "Right."
Although she noticed he looked as if her words were unnecessary.
The two opened the door and walked into the kitchen. In one corner was a stove, next to a sink, and a refrigerator on the wall behind the sink. It looked like that next to it was a door, and then a small hallway. One another side of the room looked like a large room with a wooden floor, connected to another room with carpet which appeared to be a kind of living room.
Paula noticed he was staring in that direction. "That's the foyer and then the front rooms. There's a nice alcove further down, a good storage area. Take a look."
Clint immediately did just that. Paula noticed as he examined the place it was almost as if he were digging up old memories. It was then she finally realized the reason Clint was acting so strange.
"Oh my... can that really be true?" she said in a whisper, where Clint had not picked it up.
Clint looked around the front room of the house. There had been nice looking shelves near the front door in this room, which had held priceless objects of interest. Near the east end of the room, there was a large couch. THAT couch. He remembered that couch perfectly.
"I... I don't believe this... fate has so many ways of surprising the hell out of us." he said out loud, but more to himself.
Paula however had heard it as she walked in from the wooden-foyer, "So I guess it's true. THIS is one of the houses you used to live in, right Clint?"
Clint looked at her, a look of both understanding, and even amazement, "Yes. This is the second house I used to live in. The one before my grandfather died, forcing us to move to Fohl Village.4"
"Oh... I'm... I'm sorry. I too lost my grandparents when I was young." Paula replied with a subdued tone.
"Don't be sorry. You had no idea, I had no idea. It's just... amazing someone I meet later on in my life rents the same place we had to rent for about a year."
Paula chuckled softly, "I guess it makes sense. I remember Debbie, that odd landlord who used to own this place."
"USED TO?" Clint jerked his head up to look at her, "You BOUGHT this place from her?"
"Yep. I realize now the reason the upstairs is so filthy is due to the fact no one's used it for years. I have to ask you though, did you ever get to see up there when you were here?"
"One time during the first weeks we lived here. My dad was curious to sneak a look at the upstairs, and he asked if I wanted to go along, so I did. I think there was a boarded up entrance in the basement that we had opened up to get there. Place was littered with cobwebs though, not much to it." Clint replied.
Paula nodded, "I know what you're talking about. A wooden board was covering something on the west wall down there, so I opened it up, and I found it was a way to the upstairs. I got a bit creeped out when I went up there. Trust me, you weren't wrong about the cobwebs. There's plenty up there."
Clint chuckled, "So... afraid of spiders are we?" he joked.
Paula blushed furiously, "Hey, I'm not proud of it! But I've met vicious enough types of spiders that enforce a good reason for me to be weary of them."
Clint looked down, having a feeling now he knew what she was talking about, even if she herself couldn't tell.
He then looked up, and sighed, "I'm sorry... I'm not a fan of spiders either, neither is my mom. All three of us should join the anti-arachnid club or something." he then chuckled.
Paula smiled, "We may at that."
She then got curious of something, "Now that I know you guys lived here at one time, I need to know something out of curiosity. Where was your bedroom? And your parents' bedroom?"
Clint got up off the couch and walked over past her into the wooded foyer, up to a door on the west wall, currently shut. "This room behind here is my parents' room."
Paula looked over at him, "That's where my bedroom is now."
Clint laughed, "Oh boy. I guess it makes sense." He then walked over into the kitchen, and then west ward, down a small hall, with a bathroom connected to it, as he passed, he asked Paula, "By the way, I don't know if you're aware, but that shower probably doesn't work. My mom is a shower person, and she found out there's both no cover, and some vital piece of the plumbing is blocking it out."
Paula grumbled to herself, "Yeah, I kinda found that out. I wasn't really happy. Thanks for at least telling me anyways."
She then noticed Clint had walked up to a door on the end of the small hall, next to another door. He pointed to that door, "This is my room, or was."
Paula slightly blushed, "Oh boy."
"What? What did you do to it?" he asked in a semi-joking voice.
"Go in, and you'll see." she replied. Opening the door, Clint looked into what was his bedroom one time, to now find the floor and any furniture inside was littered with plush toys, primarily teddy bears. In fact, Paula walked in ahead of him, taking out a few of the teddy bears she had gotten from Canton Centre Mall and Belden Village Mall, and putting them on a more vacant shelf.
Clint looked on in astonishment, "So... so many... teddy bears... you turned my old bedroom into a teddy bear emporium?" he asked, chuckling at the irony.
"Hey, it's not like I knew this was your bedroom at the time, not that I'd care anyways." she said with a raspberry at him. Clint sighed to himself, and walked back into the front room of the house, sitting on the couch.
Paula followed him in, "So... what now?"
Clint looked to her, wondering, Really... what now? Should I go and look around my original neighborhood? Well, I don't know... Paula might want to come with me. She said herself she had nothing to do. I'm not sure if I really want her there. I know the old neighborhood was slightly getting worse in status when I left, but for all I know, it could've deteriorated far worse than I'm expecting. I'm not sure what kind of impression she'd get from the place. Maybe I can wait here and hope she decides to take a nap, and then leave.
"Hey, do you think I can hang here for a couple of hours? I've got some time to kill. It's still before noon. I probably want to see if I can get a look at the attic soon."
Paula shrugged, "Well, I guess you can stay here for a bit. However don't think you can use this as a second house to live or anything, unless you're willing to pay part of the bills." She added, half-jokingly.
"Yeah yeah, I figured as much." Clint said, sticking his tongue out at her briefly.
Paula looked over towards her bedroom, and she let out a yawn, "Sorry, but I'm going to go take a nap. The whole 'Oyatsu' thing kinda drained me from the start, and then #18 and Nina came around and about pulled me over to the two malls in Canton."
"You went to Canton Centre Mall?" Clint asked.
"Yeah, why?" Paula asked.
"Sensed you and Nina leaving as I was coming back from near Massillon." Clint replied.
"Oh." Paula said, and then yawned again, walking to her door, "Sleep... sleep sleep. Need sleeeep." she said as she walked in and shut the door behind her abruptly.
Clint chuckled mentally, Great, she's tired. I'll wait until she gets to sleep and then I'll head off and look around near my neighborhood. I could pass the time waiting by going up to the second floor again. I wonder just how much worse it really got. He thought to himself as he opened the kitchen exit and then opened the basement door, and walked down into his old basement, ready to explore the upstairs of his former second house...
At Waynesburg Drive, Dan was currently hard at work near his make-shift garage. He had re-uncompressed the capsule that contained Goku's mysterious 20-year old spaceship. He had been in and out of the ship many times, trying to get any kind of way to get the gravity chamber inside to work. Although he had discovered that the gravity engine itself was not totally destroyed beyond utter disrepair, he realized it was not going to be as easy as he was hoping. Many of, if not most of the major control wires to the ship in general were fried beyond repair.
Dan had quickly realized that it was dead as a general spaceship, but he found to his luck that no vital and currently irreplaceable components in the main gravity machine itself were damaged too badly. He was able to get the main module fixed, and at one point he had been able to get the display on the gravity machine to turn on, but the controls for changing the gravity itself were still out of order. At best, he had gotten it to reach 1.2x Earth's gravity, which was only a 20% difference, nothing that really hindered Dan all that much, basically worthless for any kind of real training.
Outside, Teresa, Radditz and Heero had been doing some small training. Mostly, they were talking amongst themselves though, much like Devin's group had ended up doing. Teresa had been able to explain how she had managed to get her hands on the scouters Oyatsu had been holding onto. She had explained that she had been approaching their usual training spot by van, thus her ki levels were lowered and had gone initially unnoticed by Oyatsu. Teresa remembered that she still had some delivery work to do, and was going to park her van nearby for quick access when she was done. However as she had gotten closer, she had sensed Dan and Radditz's kis. Dan's had not felt right by any means to her, and she had the feeling she wanted to be sneaky, so she had masked her powerlevel down to normal human level, and ran around from tree to tree to approach the area where Oyatsu had confronted Radditz.
She had witnessed the invoking of the Durty Durt Dur curse on Radditz, and the two serious hits Oyatsu laid on the long-haired Saiya-jin. She had managed to see the capsule containing the shapeshifter's scouters fall out of his overcoat when Radditz had caught him off guard with his final blast. She had watched as well as he had fought with Alex and Paula, watching him use the curse on Alex, and tricking Paula with the Taiyoken attack. When Teresa had regained her vision, she had realized Oyatsu had been moving towards Heero and Virgil's location, and she had quickly rushed over to where she had seen the capsule fall. Much to her luck, she had found it relatively fast.
After she had done this, she had quickly moved over to Nina while Oyatsu was focused on Devin's group, and then Vernon and Jason. Nina had told Teresa that she had found out another strong fighter was close by, and it had turned out #18 was that person, so both had met with the Cyborg in North Canton, a ways north of the airport, and they had made a plan. Although Teresa had not told Nina at the time she had learned how to make a realistic-looking energy duplicate. It was also because the Teresa who met Nina and #18 was an energy duplicate that the real Teresa had not been so aware of #18 coming to help. She had been close by though when Oyatsu had battered her clone to death, and quickly reappeared to try to free Nina of the containment field provided by Oyatsu's Pulse gun.
She in truth had not expected to survive Oyatsu's wrath because of what she had witnessed happen to her energy clone, but Dan had been able to halt the shapeshifter long enough to allow #18 the time to save everyone. Oyatsu's plan had failed solely on the fact that he had not anticipated the other Cyborg to be anywhere nearby, or to suddenly attack him. Unfortunately, the shapeshifting cat had managed to elude them, thanks to some strange ability that prevented anyone from sensing his powerlevels in his natural form, and thanks to somehow being able to use the Kai Kai technique, a teleportation power much like the Shunkan Idou, except there was no ki target required.
Teresa was worried because Oyatsu was still out there, and could be anywhere, posing as anyone, or anything. She had learned from Dan of some of the information he gained from Oyatsu while possessed. His shapeshifting powers made him a serious problem, since she had found out of the five different forms he took, a 17-year old boy, an elderly looking woman in her late 50s, a Chihuahua, a buck, and then the cat form that appeared more to be his true form. Dan said that Oyatsu claimed to be a native to the Dragonball universe, a shapeshifter from the same school as the characters Puar and Oolong, except that his abilities had far surpassed their own. Another thing that made her scared of Oyatsu was the fact that he been the reason Dan had become a target of Al-Qaeda, the horrible Islamic group of terrorists responsible for the attacks on the 11th, now called "9-11" for short. She was afraid the shapeshifter was still in cahoots with the terrorists, and that she would be a major target the next time either one attacked due to her interference in their other plots.
She also feared for her family, and also for Dan's family. Her own family had already been used against her once to force her to try to kill Dan at their high school. It was only because of Nina and Paula that she had both survived and also had been prevented from making a serious mistake. Paula had stopped her from using her taser-like device to kill Dan, and Nina had killed the operative making sure she didn't back off. She also then remembered of Clint's role in saving them all. That experimental bomb, the one that had the power to hit anything in a 12-mile radius. He had risked everything to save his friends, and her, despite not seeing her back then as a 'friend', from that otherwise horrible weapon. She had to also thank Radditz, for finding out the location of her captive family and saving them from the last operative who had been holding them hostage.
As she thought to herself, she watched as Radditz had been showing Heero various pointers from the same sessions he normally gave her and Dan. She was amazed as he was picking up on the training relatively quick.
In fact, Heero had decided he wanted to ask Radditz, her and Dan a question. "Radditz, I like your training, but at the same time, I like training with Devin and his group. Do you think it'd be possible if we merged our groups?" Radditz scratched his chin for a moment.
The idea did appeal greatly to him, especially in the wake of Oyatsu's attempt to get rid of them, but he was worried about McDonalds due to the fact that he had picked McDonalds for his job due to the close proximity to the field he had been currently training at. On the other hand of course, he would have more people to train, and Devin would once again be one of them. Radditz had originally given Devin some similar training prior to the 11th, before he felt he had to train Teresa and Dan personally.
Maybe it was for the best their groups remeet. Of course, Radditz had his own comments to say. Although all of the present Misfits could sense ki well, Radditz had the easiest time sensing his brother's massive powerup. He knew Goku had not transformed, and he had a feeling the move he had used to defeat Nappa and later fight Vegeta, and then even Frieza over 20 years ago was the reason he had jumped so high in so little time.
"What did he call that... the Kaioken?" he spoke up, making Heero and Teresa look at him.
"Pardon me?" Teresa asked.
"The Kaioken. A special ability my brother Kakarott has. It makes a decent substitute for his Super Saiya-jin levels. It's a powerlevel multiplier, but it can put stress on the body, even risking muscle failure or death if overused. He learned how to go as high... as twenty times I think. Although he normally used ten, and only twenty at important moments." Radditz replied. Heero and Teresa were instantly interested in the idea.
"That sounds like something I'd want to use. I bet none of the others missed Goku's powerup either." Heero said, and then he sensed out, and he found Devin, Virgil, Dwayne, Dusty and Steve with Goku, Vegeta and Alex, "Speak of the devil, everyone from my training group minus Clint is over with Goku, along with Vegeta and Alex." he then felt Jason and Vernon approaching the area as well, "Make that Jason and Vernon too."
"Wait, where is Clint?" asked Teresa.
"It feels like he's deep within Canton City... strange. His aura's right next to Paula's too. They must be both doing something, I guess they were exploring, because Clint's aura was moving all around the place." Radditz stated.
He then thought about Nina, and sensed out for her. He felt her energy signature north of Paula's, about the same distance she normally was away from Paula when both were idle at their houses. He assumed that meant Nina had returned home.
"I think Nina's back at our place. I should probably call her and Paula too and ask about whether they want to try to learn the Kaioken or not." then he realized, "Damn! I don't have Paula's phone number. I guess I'll have to ask her later."
He then realized, "Of course, we need to see if Dan wants to learn it too."
"Wants to learn what?" Dan had heard that last comment, but not the rest of the conversation, having been working on the gravity machine.
"Dan, I think my brother might be offering lessons for the Kaioken attack soon. We're probably gonna head over there to try and learn it soon. Do you want to come along?" Radditz asked.
"Sure, I'm having next to no more luck than earlier at the moment. I can't get this damn machine to go any higher than 1.3x gravity. I can barely even notice it even then." Dan replied. He then picked himself off the ground and walked out of the ship, recapsulizing it, and putting it in his pocket.
"By the way Dan, what would you think if we decided to merge our training group back with Devin's?" Radditz asked.
Dan remembered that he was originally with Dusty when he and Radditz were training prior to the 11th.
He realized he wanted to train with his old friend again, "I'd say, let's do it then!" Dan replied.
It was unanimous, they would meet Devin's group when they went to see Goku, and ask them about remerging their training programs. After a couple of more minutes of talk, the four of them picked up into the air and flew off in the direction of Goku, Vegeta and Alex's houses.
As he turned west off Fulton Avenue on to Brown street, Clint walked at a leisurely pace towards the location of his original neighborhood by the path he remembered best. He had succeeded in sneaking away from Paula while she had fallen sleep. He had kept his powerlevel low enough not to make a big notice if he had to speed off suddenly. So far she had not followed behind him, and that was fine by him, this was his business, and only his.
He ran in closer toward his neighborhood, and turned south when he had finally reached the turn at Gilmore Avenue. He turned and walked down the small alcove of houses. Noticing though that this neck of the woods had definitely had looked better in the past. A lot of the houses looked barely occupied, and some windows had boards over them. He knew a lot of his old neighbors had left in the past before they had, but he had not known so much about other occupants on the outskirts of his neighborhood.
He emerged from the alcove, and saw a southern view of his neighborhood. Perhaps it might have been the now darker clouds coming in from the southeast of him that had made it look that way, but for some reason, this view of his old neighborhood spooked him greatly. He walked in closer to a couple of houses on the northern edge of his neighborhood. Most of the ones he remembered still standing, but some looked like vandals had attacked them in the recent months. Boards were also covering various windows and doors. There was hardly a soul in sight, especially no one younger than him. When he had been very young, kids of all sorts had lived in the neighborhood along with him, but now a lot of what he saw almost made him think he was in a ghost town.
He had just hoped his own house was still relatively intact. He last recalled that no one had really been heard to move in. However he also realized something: his parents still owned a slight piece of property up here: a three-deck garage in which many of the things they couldn't really fit in the later two houses had been stored, including a half-broken down car, parts to two different waterbeds, and probably more things he could not place off the top of his head.
He decided he would delay looking at his own house directly for the moment, and continued down 5th street, looking over to see if any houses he remembered old friends of his living in were standing. As he expected, none of those said friends were around anymore, but a few of their houses, although in semi-shoddy condition remained. He walked back over to the intersection of Gilmore and 5th street, but when he turned to look back south, his eyes twitched, as he looked ahead. Paula had followed him after all, but she had her back turned to him, looking southwards over his neighborhood as well.
He went to speak up, but she spoke first, "Is this where you lived before?"
"Yes it was. Why did you follow me?" he asked, trying not to get angry.
"I should've guessed you would head off without me when I got to sleep. Not that you couldn't do so, but is it that big of a deal if I'm here?" she asked.
"Well, I didn't exactly think this place had aged gracefully, and it looks like I've been right so far." Clint replied, calming down a little.
Paula had sensed his lingering hostility, and turned around, "Don't be afraid of me being here. You said you didn't like to judge others when we were back on Shorb, right? Well I don't judge people easily either. Give me a chance dangit."
Clint was taken back at this. He realized that maybe we was being a bit too aversive around her. He figured he was just afraid she would do something when his guard was down.
"Are you really still unable to get over that? It's in the past Clint. I thought you were better than to dwell on that stuff." she replied, sensing his feelings, and disappointed.
Clint sighed, "Okay... fine... I guess I'm just so afraid you might kill me when I'm not looking."
"Why? Just because I made one mistake?" Paula asked, "The people back there were wrong. It happens. I'm sorry if the rift scared the crap out of all of us. They were making it sound like you would attack someone any second."
Clint realized he had been aversive for little reason, "You figured it was best to disable me before asking questions..."
"Yes. I'm sorry about all of that, alright? I might have mental powers, but I'm not perfect." Paula replied.
Clint sighed, maybe he owed her an apology, he figured it would help if he started by letting her follow him, "Alright... if you really want to know about my neighborhood, follow along with me. I guess it won't matter, but I can't say it will be a pretty trip. I don't have any idea just what will happen. We're only on the north edge of my neighborhood. My house is further ahead, and it's been 2 or 3 years since I've been in these woods."
Paula smiled, "Alright. Thank you." The two of them looked ahead, noticing the clouds were getting a bit darker.
"Why does it have to be getting dark already? Only makes this place look worse." Clint replied.
"There might be rain on the way." Paula replied. The two of them walked closer down the street, past a tiny field, and Clint looked on the left side of the street, looking at an older, grayish-blue house, looking to be three floors high. He looked up and down the front and left sides of the house, noticing some boards over a couple of the windows.
"Figures, some of the windows are broken." he said, making Paula look to him.
"You mean this is the place?" she asked him.
"Yeah, that's my house. Largest of the three places I lived in. The house you're in now is the middle-sized one. My current one is the smallest." Clint explained, and then looked to his right, noticing a small house was not too far away, a more recent looking house. Paula noticed this and read a notice on the side.
"'Habitat for Humanity'. Was this house here before you left?" she asked.
"Yeah, Habitat For Humanity had several houses being built in these parts, and around. Another older house laid here once, but it was torn down. I miss that place. The people who lived there were avid game players, also more mature than most people around their age. There were other houses along the west side of Gilmore too, but they were torn down long before I left." he then looked further head, noticing a two or three story green apartment was still standing, but now that where was a type of wired fencing around the area near it. Paula looked on in the other direction, and she noticed a small vacant lot, and a few more old and shoddy houses close by.
"Clint, was this place always like a ghost town?" she asked him.
"No, definitely not. That's why it's depressing to look around. The neighborhood is nothing like it used to be." he then turned towards her direction, but when he caught site of a particular area, his eyes went wide in disbelief, and then narrowed to anger.
"WHAT THE HELL?" he growled in anger and quickly ran past Paula over onto the small field north of his house, and looking at a recently cleared area. Paula noticed he did not look happy, and was curious.
"What is it?" she asked.
"Where is it?! Where's the garage?!" he growled, almost ignoring her completely.
"What garage?" Paula asked. Clint looked back, a look of anger and depression in his eyes. His eyes expressed a look of defeat.
"I never told anyone why I left this place to move to the house at 11th street. I guess you're the first one. I didn't leave here because we wanted to. My parents fell into a financial slump for a while. Three months of mortgage bills piled up without being paid. We couldn't pay in time, so we had no choice but to find a new place. However my parents did still own a three-deck-garage that stood right in this spot in front of me. Even though we couldn't move all our stuff to 11th street, or even to Fohl later on due to the size restrictions of various places, we still had a place to put that extra stuff in case we ever needed it again." he then finished, almost looking slack. Paula could swear he looked like he would erupt.
"It's gone Paula. Someone... some bastard or bastards destroyed or cleared it, without our knowledge or consent. All our extra stuff is gone, likely stolen. My parents probably have no clue of this, and they're not going to be any too happy. We had a spare car, and parts composing of two waterbeds, along with other various merchandise in here, and it's all gone, ALL GONE!" he growled.
Paula sighed in anger, "That's terrible. You're sure your parents have no idea of this?"
"I'm sure if they knew about this, I'd have found out, and they might have found a new place to put the stuff, but there's nothing here anymore. I don't know when this happened, but I want to know why!" Clint growled.
"Aside from you, I haven't really seen anyone else around here. I don't know if anyone would know anything." Paula mentioned.
"Makes two of us. I didn't really see anyone here either. Most of the houses seem to be abandoned, and boarded." Clint then thought of something, "I wonder how the rest of the outside of my house, and my yard looks."
Clint walked up the street nearby, Paula following behind. Clint found his old driveway, with no signs of any recent vehicles parked in front of it. However when he looked over to his right, he saw another sight that about made his jaw drop.
Paula had noticed this, "What?"
"I don't.... I don't believe it! My garage... it's not the only place that's gone!" Clint was staring in disbelief at a cleared-looking area of land only a few feet north of him. It had looked like it had recently been cleared.
"What else got cleared this time?" Paula asked.
"There used to be a hilled area over here, with two medium-sized apartments laying on top of them. They were still here when we had left, and it looks like they've recently gotten cleared away. What the hell has happened to this place?!" Clint growled in disbelief.
He then sighed, and calmed down, as Paula walked up to the fence near them, "You owned pets?" she took a shot in the dark.
"Yeah, and still do. Mostly it was always dogs. I'm surprised the gate is relatively undamaged. I can't say the same for my yard though. It looks as dead as a wasteland." Clint replied. The leaves had began to fall from the approaching Autumn, and they had made the scene even more depressing. Clint walked over to the gate near the driveway and began to open it.
Paula looked over with concern, "Should you even be doing that?"
"I don't think anyone will give a damn right now. We both have yet to see anyone around here. Besides, it's not like I can actually go INSIDE my house. That's where the problems would start." Clint replied, "Besides, it was MY yard to start with."
Paula shrugged as she cautiously followed him into his old yard. As they turned the corner, the back porch of his old house was on their right. It was a concrete structure, with a patched wall beneath it, each hole filled with bricks. The porch mostly looked abandoned, but one object remained, as they looked on the right side of the porch, a strange barrel that looked like it would store trash. Clint walked onto the porch and looked around, noticing his doors were still there, locked in time.
He sighed to himself with some dejection, "Maybe it was a big mistake for me to be so curious." he said to himself.
Paula wanted to find a way to make him think otherwise, but she couldn't find the words to say. She walked up onto the porch and examined it, not knowing what to say.
"Well, I guess I've done what I had to." Clint said, as he noticed the potential storm clouds starting to come in close. He heard a boom in the distance, the sound of thunder.
"Paula, I think we better go, before we're caught out in the open in this storm. Strong or not, I don't want to take the risk of being fried to death by lightning." he said.
Paula didn't answer him immediately, and when he turned around to call to her again, he saw Paula was looking at the door on the left end of the porch, and she had been examining it.
"What're you doing? We gotta go!" Clint called.
"This door doesn't look like it's been idle for long. Neither does the other door." Paula replied.
"What do you mean?" Clint asked her in confusion.
"You said it's been 3 or 4 years since you were ever in this house, right?" she asked back.
"Yeah, why?" Clint replied back, still not sure what she was implying.
Paula grabbed the handle of the door in front of her, and began to turn it. To Clint's surprise, she suddenly pushed it OPEN.
"I knew it!" Paula exclaimed, "These doors have been recently used."
Clint gaped on in astonishment, "How... how could you tell?! And why is one of my doors unlocked?!"
"I don't know why it's unlocked, but we should probably lock it." she replied.
But Clint pushed past her, "Wait. This might be the only chance to see what's happened inside for the rest of the time I'm alive!"
"Are you sure? I thought you said the problems were with going inside?" Paula asked.
"Yeah, but this place hasn't been touched, supposedly... in four years, not to mention I hadn't been expecting to actually be able to go in at the time." Clint replied.
Paula smiled, "Fine... fine I won't argue with you, but I don't want you blaming it on me if we get questioned by the police."
"Fine, I won't, okay?" he replied with a raspberry, as the two entered into the abandoned house, not knowing what to expect...
As they walked into Clint's abandoned first house, they immediately noticed another door right in front of them.
Clint looked at it, "That door leads to the basement, not sure if you'd really want to go down there yet. Same with me, the power probably doesn't work anymore, so we couldn't see down there very well."
Paula nodded, and they turned right, entering a large foyer. At one end of the room there were windows that were boarded up. Clint remembered the windows would look over at the now missing garage across the street. He turned right, looking at a small folding door in the middle of the right side of the room. He walked up and opened the door. When he looked inside, he noticed the room was empty. As it was expected.
"This... used to be a small closet. Nothing really to see." he said when he saw Paula looking over.
Paula shrugged, looking around left and right with curiosity. Clint decided he would go right first. Walking past a small opening, they entered a second foyer, with a heater vent next to another vacant doorway. Another opening lead into a larger room nearby. Clint walked into the smaller of the two connecting rooms first.
"This was one of my rooms. I had two of them here." he explained, "This was my playroom, where I had toys and my games at." Clint replied.
"Where's your bedroom anyways?" Paula asked.
"Upstairs. I'll show you when we get there." Clint replied, as he left the room to let Paula have a look inside. It was small and was mostly vacant. Clint walked into the larger of the two connecting rooms.
Paula looked ahead of him, "The kitchen I assume."
"Yeah, basically." Clint replied. He then noticed a tiny room on the left kitchen wall, "And that... I forget exactly the main purpose of that room. It was a small storage place at one time, then it was a insulated computer room nearing the end of our stay here."
"Clint, did you guys leave a table here?" Paula asked, Clint then noticed what she was talking about. A small table looked to be in the corner near the refrigerator.
"Strange... I don't remember owning a table like that." he commented, "Maybe I'm forgetting more than I want to admit."
The two left the old kitchen and walked back near the entrance, and they had started to hear rain falling outside, and rumbles of thunder. Realizing they were stuck there for the moment, they decided to just continue on and walked into the large room near the first foyer.
"The front room." he sighed, remembering many minor memories of his past in this place. The room was mainly vacant, although a fireplace was on the right side of the room, although it looked like it had not actually been used in many years. That was true, as they never really used the fireplace while they had been there. It was just here for decoration as far as he had been concerned. The only other object of interest aside from a window or two was a wooden door that looked more recent than the other doors seen so far in the house.
"Where's this door go?" Paula asked.
"Upstairs." Clint replied, opening the door nonchalantly.
As they entered the stair-room, there was a small opening to the side that lead to a now-blocked off entrance to somewhere. Clint didn't apparently really care to explain it. The two walked upstairs, and around a corner, until they were in a narrow hallway, with three doors near them, and two open rooms down the hall. One of them had an old toilet and a bathtub, which Paula correctly assumed had been their bathroom, but she couldn't see into the other room from her vantage point. Clint opened the first of the nearby doors, entering a room beyond that was about the size of the front room downstairs, and apparently right above it as well. Paula followed him in, although the two could not see too well due to the pulled down drapes in the room. "This was my parents' bedroom. Much bigger than the one they have now, and the one you're now using." he commented.
"Which one is your room?" Paula asked.
Clint sighed, "The third door." They walked out and to that door, wooden door which looked to have some chipped paint on it. Clint opened the door, leading into a room roughly the size of the foyer in the middle of the house. The room was mostly vacant, but the window on the end of the room was partially boarded, the glass behind it broken in places. Clint grumbled, also noticing some stray stones laying on the ground, probably what had broken the glass before. One the back left wall, another door was open, leading into a narrow room with an angled ceiling. Paula looked on in a neutral expression.
Wordlessly, they left Clint's old bedroom, and walked down the hallway, allowing them to see the one room Paula couldn't see into earlier. It looked like another kitchen, except not as large, but the stove in one corner and the small cupboard gave some hints to its' original purpose. The windows were also mostly boarded up, but it had been done almost like it had left a small section one could peek through to look outside. This had made them both wonder a second, then they decided to not dwell on it any further.
Clint spoke up, "One more real place, the attic. It's behind the second door up here." he spoke.
The two of them walked over to the door, right in front of the end of the stairwell, and opened it. Behind it was another stairwell leading up to the attic itself. Both Misfits walked up the stairs and to the top. As they began to reach to top, they felt a serious draft blow past them. Turning left and in the direction of the draft, Clint grumbled at the sight. Apparently one of the windows that had been in his attic was completely missing, letting a draft of air in through it. The missing window was on the front side of the house, but Clint admitted it gave him a good overview of the neighborhood outside. The rain was also beginning to let up, but some thunder and wind was still blowing through. Paula meanwhile looked on the other side of the attic, and saw a perfectly intact window on the other side, this one was apparently positioned over both kitchens, and looked over into the vacant driveway. The two looked around the attic with their eyes, spotting mostly nothing, except pipes and a few pieces of old equipment that belonged to the house.
"Well, that's basically the whole freakin' tour." Clint said to Paula, "Except the basement, but we don't have any flashlights."
"Wait. I think I got a way we can see down there." Paula had suggested.
Clint looked curious, "Even so, I'm sure the basement is webbed to the ends of the earth, and there might be a good deal of spiders and other stuff down there."
Paula sighed, not wanting to hear that, but she still continued, and ignited a burst of her PK Fire around a hand, and using it as a torch.
Clint had realized her intention, and sighed, "I guess that could work, but I think there are heating tanks down there, so we need to be careful where we walk. Maybe we should wait a few more minutes until it gets lighter. There is a window along the stairs down into the basement which might give us some extra light."
The two had agreed to wait up in the attic, sitting on the floor on separate ends of the room. About 10 or 15 more minutes passed before the rain had fully cleared up, and then the clouds began to lift, revealing some sun, and in Clint's opinion, making the neighborhood look slightly less deserted and depressing. Paula on the other hand had still be dwelling on the strange conditions in Clint's neighborhood. She had never remembered any place she had ever gone looking so desolate and ghost-like. The entire neighborhood seemed like it had been abandoned and left to rot. She had flown over the area once before, but she could not really tell anything was really wrong from a fly-over, and she never gave it notice then. She continued to think on things, until she suddenly appeared to blank out for a couple of seconds. She wordlessly sat up and walked over to the intact window and looked out. She had again noticed the backdrop of the neighborhood, and nothing looked really too different.
She was about to pull away from the window, when she suddenly saw something moving on the alleyway up the road from the driveway. She looked on in curiosity as she saw two figures walking down towards the remote area. She could not immediately identify them by features, but they both appeared to be male. As they came closer, she noticed one was tall and slightly muscular, with a crew cut. Another had hair about shoulder length, and was shorter than his collogue by several inches. He appeared to have a stance of confidence in his stride. Paula noticed the two men suddenly turn a slight angle, now walking right onto the driveway.
She looked over to Clint, "Clint, we might have some company! Two men just walked over into your old driveway!" she called in a mild shout, making sure not to alert the two strange men outside that they were up there.
Clint looked back, "You too? I saw a group of three walking from the direction of West Tuscarawas. They look to be coming in close from the front."
The two Misfits walked by each other to identify the people the other had seen. As Clint surveyed the two men that came from the east side, Paula saw the three others Clint was talking about. One was about the average size of 6 feet, slightly built, but mostly looking to wear a green overcoat and bladed sunglasses. The second was about the same height, but his hair was dyed a strange purple, and looked to be in a split mohawk of sorts. Another boy was about Clint's height, with dyed green hair and a normal build. Paula noticed an odd feature on his left shoulder though: a tattoo that looked like the icon representing a hurricane, with a dollar sign etched through it.
"Dammit! There's more coming behind the two you spotted!" Clint called back, "Three or four of them I think, but it looks like they're walking into Bill's old yard." Clint asked.
"Bill?" Paula asked.
"Old neighbor. Moved out long back. His house was used by a couple other neighbors, but it too was eventually abandoned before we left."
Paula grumbled to herself, as she saw 3 more figures approaching from the west of the house, the way she and Clint had come there from. Paula scrutinized all three of them. More or less, all three were male, averaging around 5 feet 10 inches to 6 feet 3 inches. One was really lanky and reminded her of a stick ready to blow over in the wind, and another was slightly pudgy in the same manner as Devin was, but he looked nothing like Devin at all. However as she went to look at the third one, she spotted three more males walking from the road directly south of the house.
When she focused her eyes on them, she gasped in a horrified shock, "No... no way!"
"What?! What's wrong?!" Clint asked.
Paula gaped on down at the last three men approaching the house on her side. One of them had a strange red-orange hair that was about shoulder length, and was about 5 feet 7 inches, with a black overcoat, strikingly similar to the one Oyatsu had forced Dan to wear earlier that day, but without the bulkiness. The second had normal brown hair, and was the most normal looking of the bunch, but his expression was already embedded into her memory, having seen it before. The third was probably the shortest of the entire group that had been approaching the area, at around 5 feet 4 inches, making him almost Vegeta's height. His hair was slicked back, and his outfit had a fraternity symbol of Alpha on the back, but the Alpha symbol appeared intermelded with another symbol, one she could not recognize. However their images had already been burned into Paula's head, from an earlier incident.
"I... I know three of these guys. Well, I don't know them, but I've seen them before! Nina, #18 and I encountered them earlier at Canton Centre Mall. They were hanging around the water fountains close to the food court, and they were harassing anyone who would walk past. They even made cat-calls at Nina and I, and made a comment about Nina's wings making a good hunting trophy." Paula explained.
"Which three?" Clint asked, now feeling anger bubbling to the surface. Paula pointed out the three culprits, but they both realized most of these people were heading right to the house.
"Why are they here of all places?" asked Clint. The two hurried down the attic stairs, heading to a couple of intact windows in the second floor hallway. Looking through them, there were 6 people in his yard, and apparently another 5 people were in the neighboring yard.
"What the hell are they doing here?!" Clint growled.
"It looks like they're meeting here for something." Paula assumed. Unfortunately, the two could not actually hear the people talking. Somehow, they had the feeling it wasn't good. Suddenly, Clint noticed the 6 people in his yard walking over to the porch where he and Paula had entered the house from.
"OH SHIT! I think they're coming inside!" Clint cried.
Paula then suddenly realized, "These people... they must be using this house for some reason."
Clint growled, not bothering to vocally reply, but realizing she was probably right. These people, whoever they were, were violating his old property, and they were probably serious trouble. He then heard sounds below them, some of them sounding vaguely like laughter and chatter. He couldn't make out the exact words, but it didn't sound good. He then realized he had messed up big time.
"Dammit. We gotta get back up to the attic now. I left the door to the stairs open. They might find out someone's been here. Let's get out of here." he said to Paula.
She nodded, agreeing with his logic, as they quietly opened the attic door up and snuck back up into the attic. They had done it just in time. Clint soon started hearing voices yelling at each other. Apparently they had been arguing about the door, and they believed one of them had forgotten to close it earlier. The two of them listened from the top of the attic stairs as they heard the voices continue to chatter among themselves. Although what they heard wasn't too helping to identify the strange people.
This had continued on for nearly 20 minutes, until a couple of voices started to be heard more clear, sounding to be walking up the steps. Clint and Paula ducked away from the stairwell. Clint knew the attic door had a peep hole in it, that might be used by one of the people to see up the stairs.
He heard one voice chatter, "So Morgan, how was mall duty today?" Paula listened in closely as the next voice spoke back.
"Nuttin' too eventful, Jose." 'Morgan' responded with a slight accent, "Harry, Rowan and I did sees' these cute dames' earlier this mornin'. Fine lookin' bitches they was."
"Really?" 'Jose' responded.
"Yeah. I think theys' were going to a costume party though. One girl was on stilts I think, and had these huge fuckin' wing props. She'as definitely an odd one. Saw a third lady, she looked like somethin' out of one of those stupid cartoons my nephew watches." 'Morgan' replied.
'Jose' laughed, "Women. Ya can't live with or without em' can ya?"
"Hear hear." 'Morgan' replied.
As Clint and Paula listened, he saw Paula bubbling with anger. No doubt it was probably towards 'Morgan' or whoever the hell he was. After a couple more minutes of useless chatter from the two jerks downstairs they soon departed from the upstairs, and had apparently closed the door to the stairway shut, as Clint and Paula no longer could really hear any voices too well.
"What a jerk, he's the one who commented on Nina's wings." Paula growled after she was sure no one would hear them, "If only she were here to listen to all of this."
Clint looked out of the missing window with a look of despair, "They're gang members."
"What?" Paula asked in sudden surprise.
"I had to be sure before I said something I might have been wrong about, but I saw the small one's jacket. That fraternity jacket. It had an Alpha symbol crossed over with another symbol. I know what that other symbol is. They're members of the Crips."
"How would you know?" Paula asked, looking at him suspiciously.
"A friend of mine I knew before I left here used to be a member of the Crips and disbanded from them before we met. We were great friends, and there was one day we saw a lone Crip while we were walking over to the 11th street house. I didn't know it at the time, but my friend knew it, and he warned me to keep from saying anything major to him. Later when we were clear of the guy, my friend explained to me he used to be a Crip. Over the weeks since, we talked about it at times, and he would tell me bits of info of what to look out for, including their symbol, and of any allies or enemies they might have." Clint explained.
Paula sighed as she looked at him, "So how bad are these guys?"
"A serious enough problem for anyone to arouse their anger, at least if you're normal strength anyways. I'm sure we would be in no direct danger if we spurned their anger at us, but there's many of them, and they span more than just through Canton. They as well as their arch-rivals the Bloods are all over Ohio, and even the entire country in general. Now I understand why this place is so desolate. I should've seen it coming since the start. If I had known before I had left this place for 11th street, I would've realized sooner that the Crips were responsible for the decline of this place. They're probably the bastards who stole our extra property. They might have also torn the garage down too. I can't be too sure. I'm pretty sure we couldn't beat anything out of them though. Most true Crips are lethally loyal to each other, and would never betray each other, even for their lives."
Paula sighed at him, "I understand what you mean. My home country is not without gangs of its' own."
"Oh please, I don't think they could be anything as bad as this. If you're talking about what I think you are." Clint said.
Paula looked confused, "Come on, do you honestly think this country is the only place this crap happens?!" she growled back.
"No I don't, but I don't think the Sharks were THIS widespread, or nearly as bloodthirsty."
Paula looked at him with an expression of total surprise, as if he had hit some kind of nerve, "How... how can you know about the Sharks?!"
Clint then realized what he had said, Oh shit! Now she knows I've figured out about her past. Unfortunately, Paula had tuned her telepathy in directly on this thoughts and heard this.
"WHAT!? What do you mean you figured out my past?!" Paula growled, and Clint realized she looked like she was going to explode at him.
"Calm down... I'm sorry I didn't mention it before, but I know more about you than I let on. But... I didn't know if I was totally correct or not at the time." he said in defense.
"What... what're you talking about?! Tell me!" she replied, trying not to shout at him.
However before Clint could reply, they heard a sound below them. It was the door at the bottom of the 1st floor opening, and other sounds, somewhat frantic sounding where coming from the stairs. They heard feet walking up the steps to the second floor, and panicked voices.
"Oh shit. Thanks a lot. Now I think they heard us."Clint growled at Paula.
He heard a voice call up in their direction, "One of you idiots better not be messing around up there!"
"Dammit. We gotta get out of here." Clint whispered to Paula, looking for a quick way out.
Paula had suddenly been struck by an idea. "Clint, grab one of my hands, and lift up into the air."
"What?" Clint asked her in confusion.
"Just do it. NOW. Keep floating as if you're keeping above something like a fire pit. You might be in for a doozy of a ride." Paula commanded sternly. Clint sighed and grabbed her outstretched hand.
She looked over to the missing window, and said "You might want to close your eyes, lest you might end up giving up what you ate this morning."
Clint cringed and closed his eyes. Suddenly he felt a massive gust of air fly past him, and he rose up into the air. However within less than a second, it stopped. Clint opened his eyes, and found he was no longer in his attic. He and Paula were now hovering somewhere above what Clint soon found out to be around McKinley High School right around where the final battle with Oyatsu had occurred only hours ago.
"What... what happened?!" he asked.
"I took us away from your neighborhood, if you couldn't tell. They didn't see us, so don't worry." Paula replied.
"Wait! Did you just teleport us?" Clint asked, curious.
"No, I flew us out of here. I can't teleport in any way, but then again, apparently you should know that." she then looked at him with that stern expression.
Clint sighed, "So... it's true... I didn't think you were THIS good at speed."
"What?" Paula was again surprised.
"It was said you are one of the fastest people in the world, but I couldn't be sure if I should take it at face value or not." Clint replied.
Paula sighed, "Look, we're going back to my place, and you are going to explain EVERYTHING to me. How you 'know of my past', and all of this other stuff."
Clint sighed, "I guess I owe you, you did get us out of there without being seen."
Paula turned in the direction of her house and she flew towards it, looking back to make sure Clint was following. She was not in the mood for him to play games, not anymore. Something was wrong here, and she was going to find out what.
Goku sighed to himself. He was swamped at the current moment in time. In addition to Alex wanting him to teach the Kaioken, Devin, Dusty, Dwayne, Steve, and Virgil had later arrived. Then Jason and Vernon had come, followed by Piccolo and #17 out of curiosity. #18 soon had also followed after her brother in curiosity as well. Then Heero, Dan, Teresa and Radditz had shown up behind them. Vegeta had ducked back into the house to get the other scouters up and running with their transmitters. He had been aware of the large group outside as well, and had asked Goku to hold them there for a while, by whatever means he could, but not to mention his surprise yet.
When Goku had asked why Devin's group had arrived, they had all stated they had wanted to learn Kaioken, especially Devin, who had stated he had felt Goku's powerlevel skyrocket. Alex was a little annoyed at this declaration, but he realized there was no way anyone who COULD sense ki would've really missed that powerup, and he knew Devin was both able to sense ki and was aware of what the Kaioken was. He figured since he still had his transformations as Super Saiya-jin, there was little harm in Devin learning the Kaioken. He did laugh at Virgil a little when the fatter Misfit had declared of the same reason to come along. Virgil had barely started training. Alex didn't think Goku would be able to teach Virgil at that point in time. He begrudgingly admitted the rest of the others, even Teresa, despite her having joined at the same time Virgil had, had potential to learn Kaioken, but not Virgil. Jason and Vernon were there to learn Kaioken too, which had not surprised Alex either.
With at least 5 hours left before anyone among them would be able to utilize Super Saiya-jin in any form again, they had time to kill. Alex had called the two of them over, although he did not really want to, it was more of Goku wanting to provide equal opportunity to anyone willing, and Goku knew that if he only taught Alex, the others would think he was playing favorites. He then learned Radditz, Heero, Dan and Teresa had wanted to learn the same. He took the time to offer Piccolo, #17 and #18 the chance to learn, but all three had declined. Piccolo felt similar about the Kaioken to how Vegeta had, that it was too risky of a maneuver. The two cyborg twins didn't think there would be anyway they could really learn it due to not being 100% biological anymore.
After some initial chatter, Radditz had popped Devin the question of remerging their training programs. After a small amount of consideration, he agreed, and asked Dwayne and Steve, then Dusty and Virgil. None of them had really argued, and Dusty was glad Dan would be rejoining them.
Goku then realized something else, Now that most of them are gathered here, I could finish what I started on the 3rd!
"Alright guys, before we do anything related to the Kaioken, Vernon, Jason, Dusty, Dwayne, Steve and Virgil have catch-up to do first." he said.
"What're you talking about Goku?" asked Jason.
"I can't believe you haven't thought much on the fact you can't sense or hide your energy." Goku grumbled at him, making all of the above grumble in disbelief.
"Aw shit! I forgot about all of that!" Vernon replied, feeling personally stupid since it was him who caused a lot of them to fly off prematurely on the 3rd in the first place.
Vernon, Jason, Dusty, Dwayne, Steve and Virgil all gathered over near Goku. In about 20 minutes, all six of them had figured out finally how to sense out ki, and were now beginning to understand how to push it down in order to hide it. The six of them were feeling really embarrassed their other friends had this advantage in the past, and were rather annoyed when Alex or Devin would chuckle at them at their expense.
Devin sighed to himself, Well, no more being one of the only people who can sense ki. Wait a second! I just realized, where's Clint? I know he went off looking around Canton, but he should've been at least left curious to us all being in one place by now!
Devin sensed off and found Clint's ki, and it was right next to Paula's, and neither were moving. He then as an afterthought sensed Nina north of them, but she wasn't moving either at the moment.
Well I guess they might miss out on this. Their loss, I guess. Although they could ask Goku at a later time too, so I don't know for sure.
He also noticed Buu was over west, almost appearing to be oblivious to the fact all his friends were mostly gathered up in one place.
Goku had also noticed the lack of Buu, Clint, Paula or Nina, but at the moment, he didn't really know if he should bother them. He could easily use his Shunkan Idou to take them over here, but the reason he never used it to this point since joining his new friends was that many of them appreciated the privacy of their homes, and Goku teleporting in at any random time could scare the shit out of one of them, or get him yelled at horribly by either them or other members of their families5. Goku was not able to just tell the right times he could teleport on a leisurely basis, so he told himself he would only use the teleport in emergencies, and this wasn't really an emergency. Unfortunately, he had not initially regarded Oyatsu as a serious emergency either, otherwise he might have used it to take him and Vegeta to the shapeshifter instantly, possibly shattering his chance at a plan.
Goku sighed to himself, he was not used to underestimating his enemies so easily, but only one other time he had ever encountered anything like Oyatsu was when he faced Captain Ginyu on Namek, and that was still a different case. Ginyu and Oyatsu were similar in evil, but not stratagems, and Oyatsu could not switch bodies with others like the former could. He would probably call Buu, Nina, Clint and Paula later or try to teleport to one of them if he sensed them move around too much. However he suddenly felt Buu approaching fast, almost so fast he had not initially noticed. Buu must've been meditating up to now, since once he had started moving, he did not waste time. Buu was soon seen as he flew over the neighborhood and landed nearby.
He looked over to Goku, "What you doing Goku? Something bad happen?"
"Not exactly Buu. Most of the others just got the idea to try to learn the Kaioken from me, so that's why most of us are here." Goku explained.
It was then he suddenly realized a potentially fatal flaw in his plan: it had been so long since he had been taught how to use the Kaioken that he wasn't sure if he could actually explain to the others of a guide on how to use it. The Kaioken did come semi-naturally to him, even after around 20 years of inoperability, but it had been so long since North Kaio had explained the direct principals of it. It didn't help matters since Goku remembered his trainer had never really been able to master his own trademark ability, and Goku had.
"Oh boy... this might be tougher than I thought. I gotta really think on how to explain this to them." he said softly to himself.
He began to think deeply into his memories, of how he knew the Kaioken in way traded off the user's lifeforce in small increments to allow the multiplication of powerlevel. The higher the multiplier, the more of a constant trade would be made. This was one reason Goku could barely use times four when he fought Vegeta, and then later mastered up to ten when he reached Namek, and only used twenty in short bursts against Frieza later on. However even with that knowledge, it still wasn't helping him in how to explain trying to use the ability for the first time. It was then he decided maybe him being the one to explain it was the wrong way of going at it. He began to focus his own mental abilities within his mind.
/North Kaio! Kaio can you hear me?!/ Goku called out, trying to each into the realm of Anoyo to contact his old teacher.
He listened for about 4 seconds. After no answer, he called out again, /North Kaio, can you hear me!?/
Two seconds later, /Wha... what... oh... Goku is that you?/ a new voice called in his head.
/Hiya North Kaio! You got a few minutes?/ Goku asked.
/Sure, what can I do for you Goku?/ North Kaio's voice echoed.
/I know you're going to be curious, but I need refreshed on how exactly you explained how one first learns the Kaioken technique./ Goku asked.
/Why would you want to know that, isn't the Kaioken outdated for you?/ North Kaio echoed back with a curious voice.
/It's not for my own use. I'm gonna try to teach a few new students and other friends of mine how to use it, but I can't figure out for the life of me a good way to give them a guide. It was so long since you taught me I forgot how you explained it./ Goku replied.
He could hear North Kaio chuckling, /So how are your little 'Misfits' doing anyways? I haven't been able to keep much track of you guys lately, but Dai Kaio told me that you guys had found some new recruits./
Goku thought to himself then responded, /Not too bad, but we just barely escaped a situation by the skin of our teeth earlier./ it was then he realized he needed to find something else out, /Kaio, I also need to ask you an important question. Do you know of anyone by the name of Oyatsu?/
/Oyatsu? Odd name, but I don't know of anyone by that name recently. Why?/ North Kaio asked, his voice sounding slightly concerned.
/Well, you remember how I went to Namek by spaceship to help some of the others and met up with Frieza, and how our fight lead to Namek's destruction and all, but as far as I could recall, my spaceship was supposedly destroyed when the planet exploded. However, recently we found out this Oyatsu had somehow gotten his hands on a capsule which when we uncompressed it, revealed my old spaceship, frame still intact, though mangled somewhat./ Goku explained.
/You want me to see if I can find out how it got off of Namek?/ Kaio asked him.
/If you could somehow find out, I'd appreciate it./ Goku replied.
/I'll look into the matter when I have time. However with the odd merging of all these new universes, we've had a lot of work covering and watching the different quadrants. Kaibitoshin and Rou Dai Kaioshin are having their own troubles with the new developments. They've been rambling on once in a while about that a dark force is beginning to become present in the universe, something that seems to be extremely ancient./
Goku gasped mentally, /Really? As I said, we were attacked earlier by this Oyatsu. He took over the consciousness of one of our friends for a while, but he claimed he was doing this for a 'master' of his. I also learned apparently he attended the same shapeshifting academy as my friends Puar and Oolong on Earth!/
North Kaio cut in, /Wait, this guy's a possessor AND a shapeshifter?!/
/Yeah. Do you know him now, or just concern?/ Goku asked.
/Concern mainly. I'm sorry Goku, I don't know anyone by that name. The closest person I know sounds similar to that, but her name's Agari, not Oyatsu./
Goku frowned, but decided to let that go for the moment, /I see. Thank you. Anyways, back to what my original topic of the day was. Do you think you might be able to take a little time to help give my friends and I a recap of how to start using the Kaioken?/
North Kaio spoke in, /I just asked Dai Kaio, and he said that your situation about this Oyatsu character raises some cause for concern, so he's given me the green light, so to speak./
/Thanks much my old friend!/ Goku replied.
He then looked over to his friends. Although his mental conversation had only taken him physically about 20 to 30 seconds, he knew Devin, Alex, Jason, Vernon and many of the others would want to start their lessons soon.
"Guys, I got a confession to make." he said, as they looked over to him, "Although I can use the Kaioken, I realized just recently I forgot exactly how North Kaio had explained to me how to bring it about. Because of this, I myself cannot really guide you through it myself."
"Wait a minute, if you can't explain, then I guess we should go until you do remember." Devin replied, a bit disappointed.
"Wait a second." Goku replied, "I didn't say that North Kaio himself couldn't help us out."
"What?!" Piccolo called out in disbelief, "Did you contact him?"
/Yes Piccolo, Goku contacted me a moment ago./ Alex, Devin, Jason, Vernon, Steve, Dwayne, Virgil, Radditz, Teresa, Dusty, Dan and Heero looked up in disbelief, all of them hearing North Kaio's voice now.
"Is that really King Kai?" asked Vernon.
/"King Kai"? My name is North Kaio, although I am flattered by that name nonetheless./ North Kaio replied, with a few chuckles following it, /Either way, it has come to my attention that Goku wishes to teach you all how to use the Kaioken. I am proud that he has finally decided to pass down the mantle of a move I myself had not mastered at that point in time./
"Wait a minute, 'at that point in time'? You mean you actually mastered it?!" Goku asked, not knowing of this.
/Yes Goku. I was quite embarrassed that I could create such a cool technique and yet not be able to really use it myself. I kicked myself mentally over it for many years, pushing myself. Due to my... ahem, not so alive status anymore, I finally understood just why I never mastered the Kaioken myself while Goku did./
"Wait, are you saying we have to be DEAD to actually unlock the ability to use it?!" Alex asked, not believing his ears.
/No no no... it's not quite that drastic. It's just being alive was clouding my understanding of it. Anyone, alive OR dead can learn the Kaioken, provided the have the exact right understanding of it, and that they can surpass a base powerlevel of something around 5,000 or more. I learned in the grand scheme of things I was a little too weak to really bring the actual power of Kaioken to the surface when alive. I'm actually a lot more powerful than I was 20 years ago Goku. Not anywhere near your strength, or even Piccolo's, but I'm stronger than Frieza was on Namek back then at least.6/
"If that's true, how did you finally do it?" asked Devin, extremely curious. He knew none of this had ever been truly elaborated on in the show itself, so this was something new and interesting to him.
/Let's just say that some of you might not yet have the necessary experience to learn Kaioken right this moment. Some of you, like Virgil have barely gotten mastery of standard ki senses and masking. Kaioken requires an extreme understanding of both of those abilities in addition to the powerlevel requirement. Although I can tell all of you present have met and surpassed the powerlevel requirement, the experience requirement is not so easy for me to distinguish by just looking at you./
"Yeah yeah, so exactly what do we have to do, considering we do have the requirements all down?" Alex asked impatiently.
/First off I need to explain the reasoning of why you need to be good at both sensing and masking ki in order to use the Kaioken. The Kaioken is a multiplier basically, so in a way, you're shoving your ki beyond your normal levels, basically multiplying it by whatever number you shout out. And yes, shouting out the intended multiplier is NECESSARY to using it properly, a basic "KAIOKEN" shout will simply be taken as a 1.5 times multiplier, not a double like saying "KAIOKEN TIMES TWO" would do. Anyways, back on topic, the only way one can really be good at shoving their ki upwards is by also being able to push it down, and concealing it. Basically it's that all actions have an opposite, but equal reaction./
"So basically you mean that the better we are at concealing our energy, the greater number we could actually use for the multiplier." Devin concluded.
/Yes, that sounds about right. However, that doesn't mean you could use your highest multiplier and expect a 100% chance of surviving the initial upsurge of energy. You see, this brings me to why you have to be good as sensing ki. Some of you might not realize it, but you can also sense your own ki if you were bored enough to, to compare it to others around you. It's this part of the experience that is necessary to knowing if you're ready to use a certain level of the Kaioken without putting yourself in the afterlife. As Goku and I have discovered by using the Kaioken often in past times, there is an initial cost to your lifeforce when you call forth the upsurge of energy. However in addition, there is a lesser, but continuous further drain on your lifeforce afterwards while you hold onto the Kaioken's power. The longer you hold onto it, the more lifeforce is traded off to keep the powerup going. This is why the Kaioken is considered to be a risky power. And yes, I semi-agree with Vegeta and Piccolo when they say it can be too risky in serious battles, but there are times the Kaioken can surprise you with its' effectiveness. It's risky yes, but it can end up being a vital, life-saving gamble if done right.
Back on topic though, the higher your multiplier, the higher both the initial cost to your lifeforce and the drain afterwards becomes. That's why Goku could only use twenty sparingly against Frieza. However, I have learned something important that should crack an important little myth about the Kaioken. It is impossible to kill yourself with the secondary drain to your lifeforce alone. It's the initial upsurge that has the serious risk of killing someone. The drain afterwards will drain the user until there isn't enough power left to drain it again. Then the Kaioken will just fizzle out, but more than likely the person will collapse and lose consciousness, but that alone cannot kill you, although it couldn't be said the same for the enemy you were fighting, who could easily eliminate you while you were downed and unaware./ North Kaio explained more in detail.
Alex, Vernon, Jason, Devin, Steve, Dwayne, Virgil, Dusty, Dan, Teresa, Radditz, Heero and even Buu, Goku and Piccolo listened on in amazement. Even Goku and Piccolo had not been aware of that last fact about the secondary drain of a Kaioken. Goku had always thought it was literally possible to drain yourself completely to death even after the initial upsurge.
After a little more silence, North Kaio realized he had definitely had their attention and spoke up again, /Alright boys, and girls... I believe it's time we see if you're all truly ready to learn such a magnificent power at last! Hehehe.../ he ended with a chuckle, as Goku prepared to physically demonstrate to them in North Kaio's steed...
Back at Paula's house, she and Clint had returned a few minutes ago. Although Paula was very curious about what Clint had said about knowing her past, she was nice enough to offer him something to drink and eat. Clint was sitting back on the couch in the front room, finishing a sandwich he made and a can of soda.
Paula cleared her throat as she walked in and sat down at a chair on the other side of the room, "So, are you ready to explain what you meant?" she asked, giving him a look suggesting he not try to hide anything.
Clint looked over to her, "Alright, but promise me you won't explode and try to kill me when I do."
Paula rolled her eyes, "Oh come on, I don't like to be violent, you should know that."
"Cut that out." Clint replied sternly, "I said I know SOME things about your past, but come to think of it, it was more of what happened during one major event in your life than your past in general."
Paula still looked interested, "Then by all means please explain."
Clint sighed, "What I'm about to tell you, some of it might have happened as I remembered it, some of it might not have. One thing I definitely didn't know was you knew Goku. I can only wonder how that is possible."
"What do you mean?" Paula asked, as if that were common knowledge.
"I notice you don't seem to have anything like a TV around here, or a radio, or anything of the sort. A suggestion is to get one when you can. Trust me, it does us all well to know of the news, and secondly, you haven't really seen Dragonball on TV, so I guess you haven't really figured it out." Clint replied.
"Cam you stop talking so vague and explain to me now?" Paula replied, a bit impatient.
"Alright, first off there's a show on our television called "Dragonball", and another like it called "Dragonball Z". Both are based off of a comic book in Japan by the name of the former. The series was written by a man named Akira Toriyama. Toriyama wrote a story which apparently involves Goku and Piccolo, as well as Buu, #17, #18, Vegeta, Radditz, and several other characters we have yet to meet. However what is off kilter to me when you and Goku tell me you knew each other when you were young is that the manga never made any note of your existence."
"That's crazy. You're saying this guy made a story semi-based off the stuff Goku and I really did, and then he alone did later with Piccolo and the others?" Paula asked.
Clint chuckled in a way that made her spooked, "There are many forms of media in the world that apparently are not as make-believe as we had originally thought. Remember when we referred to the events of the rift as a "merger"? That's because it seems several forms of fiction have in fact become reality, and intermelded as one universe."
Paula looked on, "So what exactly does this have to do with you knowing something in my past. You said this manga made no mention of my existence."
"It didn't, but SOMETHING ELSE did. Now listen closely, for this is what you'll really want to hear: I'm guessing you were either 12, 13 or 14 years old when this happened, but apparently something evil was descending on your world, people and animals were increasingly becoming violent. In the chaos, you were apparently kidnapped by a cult of nutjobs who had an affinity for the color blue." Clint had noticed Paula had visibly began to go a little pale and expressed some shock as he mentioned this, but he continued, "On the subject, I already knew of the existence of PK, or "PSI" as it was called over here when I first learned of it, but I didn't know if or how it was different from Magic or Ki, but that's not really important. I also know you have the ability to call to people from long range with your mind like telepathy, and that you can also manipulate temperatures with your PK such as heat, cold, and even control lightning. I also know you can make psychic barriers to block or bounce away similar attacks, among other powers."
"Yes, that's all true..." Paula replied, not trying to cover it up.
"Anyways, when you were kidnapped, I guess you were locked away somewhere, intended to be used either as a human sacrifice, or to be converted into their high priestess. The stories as I recall were conflicting. My guess was you were locked in a cabin near a source of running water, and from this place, you called out to a boy in his sleep, a boy you supposedly had a dream about days before the kidnapping. You asked him to come and help you, and within a matter of less than a day or so, he did in fact come to help you." Paula looked on at him in disbelief. So far everything Clint had said was in fact true.
"When you two had first met, he had no way of initially breaking you out. You offered him some kind of object, I believe you called it the Franklin Badge or something." Clint mentioned.
"Wait, you mean this?" Paula said, reaching into the shirt of her dress and apparently unclipping something. She then pulled out a circular blue badge the size of a half-dollar, with a ringed pattern, embedded with an icon of a yellow lightning bolt.
"Yes! That's the badge, the Franklin Badge!" Clint replied in realization.
"Yes... that's the one." Paula replied, but then urged him to continue his story.
"You told the boy that the cult leader had the key to your cell, and that he could control lightning with psychic powers of his own and that the badge was necessary for the boy to stand a chance against him since the badge can apparently deflect lightning back at its source. He took the badge and left, and soon returned after confronting a former-friend of his, and then the cult leader himself. He returned with the key and freed you, and you offered to help him out in thanks. Apparently he had began an adventure of his own on the night you had the dream about him. He was searching for 8 strange spots of mystical power, which were said to be linked to the earth itself. Many referred to them as "Your Sanctuaries", or some name like that. Anyways, after you joined up with him, you got your first true feel of battle inside of a strange cave outside of the place you had been taken too. Inside and at the end of the cave, there was some kind of giant mole guarding the exit. The two of you fought a close battle with the creature, but after he fell, the second of the eight places was just beyond him. It was said when you felt the energy of this place, you had sealed your decision to journey with this boy." Clint continued, and waited for any questions Paula might ask him.
When she had not asked any, he continued, "You two returned to your hometown, so your parents would know you were okay, and then you went with the boy. Your journeys would take you through a town infested by zombies, commanded by some kind of creature that was apparently made from puke. You two were captured for a short time, and you made contact with a second boy in a distant country, who actually came to your rescue and joined you afterwards. After you three defeated the puke guy, you found the third spot, guarded by a large, ancient plant or something like that, and gained its' power, then you found a large city past a large desert, and..."
"Wait, I want to be sure you're not just saying random references. What are the names of the two boys I was with to this point?" Paula asked, interrupting.
Clint sighed, expecting this question to have popped up sooner. "The first boy went by the name of Ness, and the second boy, his name was Jeff. You would later meet with a third boy from an eastern country named Poo, if what I heard was right."
Paula looked at him sincerely, "Alright, I guess this really isn't some sick joke. So if you know of this, it must mean that you knew about HIM."
Clint was bit confused, but then he realized with a horrified expression of who she spoke of, "Oh my god. Only now I truly realize we could be in serious trouble again someday." Clint had said, "Yes... I know about Giygas. I know of how he became beyond evil, and how he destroyed his mind. I know that it had to be literally maddening for you four, but supposedly you yourself were responsible for destroying him."
"No I didn't, and I know he's not truly dead. Giygas will never truly be dead, not as long as there is evil Clint." Paula replied.
Clint sighed grimly, "I was afraid you'd say that. Great... now I know that Giygas wasn't just a bunch of bullshit made up to scare people."
Paula was still curious, "So I assume you know about Pokey too?"
"Yes, that fat Benedict Arnold." Clint growled, not happy to hear that name anymore than knowing Giygas was apparently real.
"So exactly how did you know of all of this anyways? No one else among you guys has even given any clue to me that they knew." Paula asked.
"They probably really don't. It's ironic, I guess not just anime was merged when the universes became one, so did video games." Clint replied.
"What the heck do you mean 'so did video games'?" Paula asked with a concerned look.
"The reason I know all of that stuff is because it was portrayed in a video game that exists in this world. It's not the most popular or mainstream game out there, but it does have a cult following."
"WHAT?! How is that possible? How can someone just somehow know about all of this and portray it in a game?" Paula asked in a mix of anger and shock.
"Do you think I'd know anymore than you?" Clint responded neutrally, "Remember, I'm just as confused to how Toriyama somewhat accurately portrayed Dragonball despite not having you in it."
Paula sighed, "I wanna ask you another question, where could I find this game you speak of?"
"I have a copy of it, but I would have to dig all the necessary stuff out of my house. I haven't used a physical game console since I moved out of my first house, I used ROMs on my computer afterward because it was more convenient." Clint explained, and then realized Paula probably didn't know what a ROM or even a gaming emulator was.
"Anyways, now that we kinda got that subject explained, I want to talk to you about back there at your place." Paula continued, changing the subject.
Clint shrugged, "So what exactly do you want to talk about?"
"Perhaps us getting rid of these gang people or something." Paula responded.
Clint sighed, "As I said, these gangs are country-wide. More than likely we couldn't put a total stop to all of them, short of blowing Earth up, which is obviously not on our list."
"I don't mean all over the world, but at least make this city of yours and the surrounding areas a better place!" Paula elaborated.
"That's a little more plausible, yes. But it would still be hard. There are so many gangs, big and small in this city. The Bloods and the Crips are just the primary ones, but I'm sure there are secondary gangs as well." Clint replied.
"Still, wouldn't the whole of us as a group be able to easily put them down?" Paula asked.
"Well, if you're talking about fighting them, all of us are far stronger than a normal human, and barring any possibility any of these gang members have figured out they could unlock their ki, any of us, even Virgil, could easily kick the asses of a large group of any gangsters single-handedly. The problem is the reason the Bloods and the Crips are so dominant in the gang business is stratagems. They might like to fight, but for one example, they're probably smart enough not to send every single person in the entire gang to one large gang-fight. In case they lose, the remaining members can find more recruits to replace their fallen." Clint explained, "Even if we tried to take out every single member of either gang, there's a great chance we'll miss a few, and they'll regain their bearings while we're not expecting it."
"Well maybe if they know we're waiting to take them out over and over, we could scare them into giving up." Paula thought.
"Well, that depends. I don't know how these people would respond to people with powers like ours. Maybe they'll try to rise to the challenge and learn how to do the same. I'm not sure if the rest of Canton is ready for that possibility. If we attack them, we might provoke them into training themselves to the point they could hold a death grip on this city if we had to leave it for some reason." Clint replied.
Paula sighed, "You know what's funny... Nina told me the same thing when we saw those three jerks at the mall. When they saw #18, one of them almost thought she really was who she was, until another one said she was probably just in a costume."
"Yeah, if those guys find out Goku and his gang are real, and recognize where they come from and what they can do, they'll know that it's possible they could train to do the things we can do, and that would give them too much power if they succeeded. The police would probably be unable to stop them. We would be the only ones who could put a stop to them if that happened. I don't want Canton to be put into such a state of fear and depravity. I know it might seem bad as it is now, but at least humanity on its' own can deal with problems like that as they are at the moment. I don't want to be responsible of causing them to lose their ability to defend themselves all the time." Clint responded.
"Maybe we should consult with Goku and the others and see what they all think on this." Paula had suggested.
"You really think we should?" Clint was not very sure it was a good idea.
Paula sighed, got up from her seat and walked to the edge of the front room, "I'll be back in a bit. I'm gonna make a drink." Clint nodded, and curled up on the couch, closing his eyes to think for a few moments. Paula walked into the kitchen and began to pour a glass of her own soda into a cup. After she picked up the cup, she began to walk to the opening out of the kitchen, her expression went blank, and she had dropped the cup on the ground, spilling the soda on the ground...
Paula was now seeing something very odd. She saw herself in Clint's old house again, inside of his upstairs bedroom. She was apparently watching from one corner of the room as she saw one of the gang members that had been there earlier walking into what Clint said had been his closet. It was the short man in the fraternity jacket with the Alpha/Crips symbol intermelded together. He was carrying an odd metal box and taking it into the closet. As he did, Paula's vision began to automatically follow the guy as he pulled the chain light on and lit up the odd closet.
She then looked inside and saw the man walk up to a decent sized hole that had been placed into the angled ceiling. She assumed this closest was just under the stairs leading to the attic. She watched curiously as the gang member stuffed the metal box into the hole, until it was out of normal site. Paula looked on in confusion as the member turned around, but he walked out of the room right through where she would've been standing had she been there physically.
As he walked away, she heard him say, "There we go, there's no way Jermaine and those Blood bastards will find it now. Even if they got in here, they would never think to look inside of such a place."
She then turned and automatically followed after him as he walked down the stairs to the first floor. She saw him gather with the other 5 members that she had seen come in with him earlier.
"Is the dirt secure boss?" one of them asked, the other of the three punks from the mall, but not the one named Morgan, as his voice was different from either of the other two.
"Yeah Harry, there's no way they'll find it. I think it's time we got outta this dump. We got things to attend to." the first man said, apparently the leader of the entire group.
"Wait, shoulda' we leav' a guard or sumthin'?" the one she had remembered to be named Morgan by his accent, spoke up.
"No way, Morgan. If one of Jermaine's boys saw one of us here, they'd know for sure something was being holed up here." the leader spoke up.
With that, Paula watched with little control over her movements as she followed the group of gang members out through the door she and Clint had used earlier to go inside. She noticed they did not lock it though, for odd reasons. She followed close behind them until they reached the end of the yard at the front, then she merely watched as the members met up with the other five gang members she and Clint had seen in the neighboring yard, and she could swear as they were near the edge of her visual range that she saw one or two other people join up with them, who she had assumed were other members of the gang checking out other abandoned houses. After she could not see them anymore, her vision went white...
Ugh... what was that? Paula thought to herself.
"PAULA! Answer me! Can you hear me?" she then heard, identifying it as Clint's voice.
Her eyes suddenly regained vision, seeing that Clint had his hands on her shoulders, shaking her lightly to try to rouse her back to reality, and Clint noticed her pupils weren't dilated anymore.
"Paula, you alright?!" he asked, releasing his grip on her shoulders.
"I think so. What happened? Did I blank out?" she asked.
"Yes. You nearly passed out in the kitchen. What happened?" Clint asked.
"We need to get back to your other house, NOW." Paula said, making Clint look at her with concern.
He then made a shot in the dark, "You had a vision didn't you? Like when Teresa almost killed Dan on the 11th."
"Yes, a big vision. Those gangsters are hiding something at your house from the Bloods. The place is probably unguarded now. It was only 10 minutes ago from what I could tell, and I saw all eleven of the people we saw in the yards, and a few more leave the neighborhood. I also know which one is the leader of the group now. It's the small one in the jacket, the one with the gang's symbol on the back." Paula explained.
"Wait, if we're really gonna go back, shouldn't we wait a few more minutes just in case one of them forgot something and decides to go back?" Clint suggested.
"Well, I could just speed us both to your place. We'll have to stop to open the door, but they didn't lock it, so they must not be suspicious of us being there." Paula said.
"Strange. I know one of them called up at us." Clint said.
"Probably thought one of the other members was goofing off up there, not us." Paula explained.
"Wait, which way did you see them leave?" Clint asked.
"Towards that West Tuscarawas street you mentioned earlier." Paula replied.
"Good, we don't have to worry about bumping into them on the way over at least." Clint sighed.
"Why are you so concerned, you said we could beat them easily." Paula replied in a stern voice.
"Yes, but remember, I don't want to lead this to being much worse than it already is. Antagonizing them now isn't a good idea." Clint told her.
"Fine, we'll wait a couple more minutes, but get ready for a quick ride. I'm going to take us the way I got us out earlier." Paula warned him. Clint sighed, as he helped Paula clean up the spilled soda. After they finished that, the two of them walked out, and Paula grabbed Clint's arm and told him to get ready. Clint closed his eyes and sighed. As they began to move, anyone who had been watching would've sworn they instantly disappeared.
Merely a second or two later, Clint felt them stop, and he opened his eyes to be on the side porch of his house again. Paula had already opened the door on the side, the one she knew would be unlocked.
"Quickly Clint!" she called as he regained his bearings and followed her inside.
He closed the door behind them, just in case someone would come past, to make sure not to arouse suspicion.
Paula and Clint quickly walked to the upstairs stairwell, but Paula didn't get two steps up before Clint growled, "Those sons of bitches!"
Paula turned around at that comment to see Clint eyeing the backside of the door with a hating glare.
"Clint, what're you doing?! We need to get upstairs!" she called over.
"My dad built this very door with his bare hands, and they're defiling it! Look at these marks!" he growled at the door.
"What's the big deal about that door?" Paula asked him, slightly curious.
"This door is the only thing of ours we really left behind. In the last 2 years we lived here, the entrance to the basement had an additional opening that led to this stairway, which is now blocked. But it was so short we often hit our heads on it, so my dad came up with a solution and built this door for a quicker and less painful way to reach the stairs. But now that I see it, it's as if those bastards took an axe to this thing and used it for target practice." Clint explained.
Paula sighed, "Look, I'm sorry if I don't sound like I care so much, but I think this thing they've hidden is more important than the door!"
Clint realized she probably made sense, "Fine, let's go then. I wanna get out of here as soon as possible, and never come back."
The two of them walked up the stairs. So far, apparently Paula had been right, there had been no one left behind to watch the house, as they couldn't sense any real kis in the immediate area. The two quickly went into Clint's bedroom.
"So exactly where did you see this guy hide this thing?" he asked Paula.
"Inside your closet. Inside of some hole in the wall beneath the attic stairs." she replied. She saw Clint blink.
"I might know where you're talking about, there were a couple of holes in that little wall before." he said.
The two of them walked inside, and Clint turned on the light. Paula walked over to the hole she had seen the leader stuff the metal box into and bent down to put her hand inside. Clint watched her dig around inside for a couple of seconds.
She then looked up in surprise, "Wait, there's more than one here!"
"One what?" asked Clint.
"I saw the guy put a small metal box into the hole, but I can feel at least two... no three of them!" Paula responded, as she pulled one of the boxes out through the hole.
Clint took the box from her while she went to pull the next one out, and he opened it.
He sighed to himself as he looked inside, "Looks like a shitload of money, and something else with it. Some kind of pill bottle."
Paula pulled the second box out and passed it to Clint. Inside was more money, but no pill bottle. Paula then pulled out a third box, basically with more of the same money inside. She then gasped in astonishment as she felt even more boxes inside the hole.
"Geez, how much do they have stored up in here?!" she growled, as she pulled a fourth, and then a fifth metallic box out of the hole. She had decided to check the second hole above her to see if they were hiding anything else. To her surprise, she felt something else odd. She pulled out a strange ring, which looked to have a jaded-jewel embedded within it.
"What in the world is this thing?" she asked, showing it to Clint.
"No idea. Looks like some normal ring to me." he stated. Paula checked inside the hole again to make sure there was nothing else she missed.
When she had found they had gotten everything, she turned around, "Alright, we got everything. Let's get moving."
Clint nodded, turning out the light behind him, and closing the door to his room behind him. They began to walk downstairs, but then they both stopped cold when they heard murmuring nearby, sounding to be outside. The two of them rushed back up the stairs, and Paula growled lightly as she saw the gang leader returning with his two cohorts she had seen at the mall.
"Dangit! Clint, they're coming back!" she said to Clint.
"I can tell." he replied, "Better get to the attic, just in case." The two quickly scrambled into the attic for the second time and walked up the stairs, back into the drafty attic. They waited for a few minutes, to see if the gang members were coming back for something or just roaming the area.
"I knew it. I told you they wouldn't be gone for long." Clint sighed.
"I guess you were right. Be we still got the stuff, didn't we?" Paula replied.
"Yeah, but how are we gonna get it all out of here without being seen? There's no way either of us could both hold all this stuff and leave the way we did last time." Clint realized.
Paula gulped to herself, "Oh great, you're right. If they find out we're here, there's no way we'll be able to get out of here without them knowing someone was here. We'd have to fly away at top speed, and they'd both hear us and see our energy trails."
Not too long after, they again began to hear the sound of people walking up the stairs to and from the second and first floors.
"Crap. They're probably going to check on that stuff we nabbed. When they find it gone, who knows what they'll do." Clint replied. Paula was listening at the edge of the steps, hearing them talking. It was definitely the three jerks from the mall, the leader in the jacket, the red-orange haired one, and the one with the brown hair. She had found out the one with the red-orange hair was "Morgan", and the brown-haired one was "Harry". She had then remembered that Morgan had said another name, "Rowan" or something like that. That must've been the name of the leader of the bunch.
"Hold on guys, I forgot my little secret weapon in the back closet." Rowan had said loud enough for Paula to hear him.
"You're right, they're heading for the closet. The leader..."she started.
"I can hear them fine Paula."Clint shushed her quickly.
"I'll be right with you Morgan!" Rowan then called, as they heard him below them.
"What the... where the hell is the ring?!" he shouted out, "Do one of you fools have my jade ring?!"
"No Rowan, I haven't seen that ring of yours in several days." Harry had replied.
"Yeah, wuts' so importan' about dat' thing anyways?" Morgan asked.
"That strange guy gave it to me and told me to hold on to it. It's been a good luck charm, and it seems to give me a strange edge. Haven't you noticed?" Rowan said back.
"Not really man." Harry replied.
"So that's what this thing's all about."Clint said, looking to the jade ring Paula had been holding onto, "Wonder what strange guy he's talking about. Can you read into his mind?"
"I'd have to get a little closer."Paula whispered.
"Where the hell... is it!? I can't have lost it! The powers of that ring are important to our plans!"
Powers?! This thing is enchanted? Paula thought to herself, I better make sure that guy never gets his hands back on this thing.
Both of them almost jumped when they heard a enraged scream, "WHERE THE HELL IS THE MONEY AND THE PRODUCT?! ALL OF IT IS GONE!!" Rowan bellowed.
"The dough is gone?!" Morgan growled in anger.
"Even that strange drug!?" asked Harry.
"Yes, some bastard must've stolen all of it, and the ring too!" Rowan growled. Clint and Paula knew there was a near 100% chance they were in for it if they stayed any longer.
"Rowan, how could someone have just come in and took all of that stuff in less than 15 minutes?! They would have to have known about us using the place. None of Jermaine's boys hang around here!" Harry exclaimed.
Jermaine must be a leader in the Bloods or something. Clint thought to himself.
"Wait a sec' Rowan, maybe the culprit's still hidin' in the house sumwhere!" Morgan had suggested.
They heard Rowan reply, "Well then find him, QUICKLY! He cannot be aloud to get away with the drug or the ring, especially the ring!"
"And the money too man." Harry said.
"To Hell with the money! The money is worth nothing compared to the value of that ring, and even the drug! Find the damn things now!" Rowan growled back in anger.
"Let's get outta here now."Clint suggested.
Paula nodded, and the two began to edge over to the missing window, but just before they hit the window, they heard Morgan shout, "I heard sumthin' from upstairs Rowan! He mus' be in the attic!"
Clint looked to Paula, "Go. Get out of here, run back on your own."
She looked back, "What?!"
"Do it. I'll distract them from you. If they see me, they'll think I've got their stuff, not you. I don't want them going after you if I can help it." Clint replied.
"Not that it'd matter, but if you insist." Paula replied.
Clint saw her quickly vanish from near him, just as he began to hear the attic door open. There was no indication that Paula had been spotted leaving, just as he had hoped. He charged up his ki suddenly, causing an additional gust of air to flow through the attic.
As he prepared to fly off, he could've sworn he heard Rowan scream, "What in the blue hell?!"
Clint charged out of the room quickly. Rowan, Morgan and Harry had just barely gotten up to the top of the attic before Clint's energy trail had began to fade.
"What the hell?! Someone wuz' definitely up here!" Morgan growled.
Rowan looked at the vacant opening in the window with a glare of murderous rage, "YOU BASTARD!! COME BACK HERE!!" he growled, and turned to his two friends, "GO AFTER HIM YOU IDIOTS!! NOW!!"
Harry and Morgan gulped and jumped down quickly, and all three of the gang members quickly left the house, and Harry and Morgan had unsheathed weapons. Harry was carrying a Beretta 21 Bobcat INOX7, a sub-compact handgun with great accuracy, where as Morgan was carrying a sharpened machete. Strangely, Rowan did not seem to have anything to bring out, as they ran down the many streets in rage, looking for the person who had stolen their property. They swore the culprit was going to suffer dearly for this. Rowan was not happy his Jade ring had been stolen. It had been given to him as a gift from a mysterious benefactor who had told him it possessed the potential to make him into something much along the lines of a god. He could not let some unworthy idiot get his hands on it.
Clint watched the three of them make fools of themselves, screaming and yelling at each other as they tried to look for him. He snickered, knowing they wouldn't think to look straight up to find him. He knew that antagonizing them like this wasn't the best idea in the world, but he was not happy about what these jerk-offs had done both to his house and his neighborhood, so he figured he could mess with them a little. Besides, he wasn't about to let them find out Paula had any hand in their misery, and the fact she had all of their stuff and not him. He flew over a distance away and landed behind a building which conveniently concealed him from their current vision.
He figured he'd lead them around the bush a little, "HEY YOU CRIPTARDS! OVER HERE!! YOU WANT YOUR STUFF?!?!?! THEN COME GET SOME IF YOU DARE!!" he called from behind the building, and then quickly taking off before they could react.
He was way up in the air by the time the three gang members had reached the place he had yelled at them from.
Rowan was visibly pissed off, and he was not in the mood to keep it silent, "YOU'D BETTER COME OUT RIGHT NOW, BEFORE YOU FIND YOURSELF WITHOUT YOUR LIMBS, OR YOUR BALLS!" he growled with a threat.
Clint landed behind another building a good distance away, "COME OVER HERE AND TRY IT THEN! I DARE YOU, YOU BALL-LICKING FRUITS!" he called out, how with an angry enough voice.
He then smirked as he took to the air again and was above them as they reached where he just had been.
"What da hell?! Dis bastard's fast!!" Morgan replied.
"No kidding!" Rowan growled, "Where did he go?!"
Clint watched in interest, realizing he was close to Waterworks Park, just outside of the main part of his neighborhood. He decided to lead them over towards there.
Landing behind a conveniently placed building, he called, "WHAT'S WRONG, AM I TOO FAST FOR YOU CLOWNS?! I'LL BE WAITING FOR YOU AT THE PARK, YOU BASTARDS!!"
He then took to the air and flew off above the park again. He watched with interest as Harry, Rowan and Morgan rounded the side of the building he had called from, and walked over into the park, looking around cautiously for him.
"Split up, and find him. I want my damn ring back!" Rowan growled at the two of his comrades. Morgan and Harry nodded, and the three split up, looking at the various ends and corners of the park. Rowan was getting more and more pissed.
They looked for about 2 minutes before Rowan lost his composure, "WHERE THE HELL IS HE?!"
Rowan's yell was answered by a venomous voice, "Looking for me?"
Rowan looked to his west, and he saw Clint standing there, but he growled as he made out completely what had happened. He was holding Morgan up by the throat, his machete dropped a few feet away, and Clint almost looking to be ready to choke the red-haired gang member into unconsciousness.
"Put him down now!" Rowan growled, calling Harry over, who pointed his Beretta at Clint.
Clint smirked, Idiot, if he really thinks that little peashooter will hurt me as I am now, he's got no clue what's really about to happen to his punk ass.
"Come now, do you really want to kill your friend here. I know you three are friends. I heard you blabbing back in that house." Clint taunted them.
Harry and Rowan growled. Clint was right, he couldn't bring himself to risk killing Morgan, he was a friend since childhood, and Crips were loyal to each other to the core.
"Harry, put the gun away." Rowan growled.
Harry grumbled, but understood, and did as his friend and leader asked.
"Put him down! We just want the shit you took from us, nothing more!" Rowan replied.
Clint looked over, "You talking about a jade ring and a bunch of metal boxes with money and drugs?"
"Yes, if you give them back, we'll back off and let you go. How does that sound?" Rowan replied.
"Sounds interesting, but first off, why should I care so much?! You bastards ruined my neighborhood and are using my old house for you sick little plans!" Clint growled back. Rowan was astonished.
"You used to live in that place?! No wonder you knew were to look for my stuff!" he growled.
"Yes, and you Crip bastards are sticking your noses out a bit too far for your own good!" Clint growled.
"And what the hell do YOU think you really know?!" Rowan growled, "We're trying to improve this city, not destroy it!"
"What the hell kind of bullshit are you preaching?!" Clint growled, "My neighborhood does not look like it has improved in any way since I left it many years ago!"
"There will be some sacrifices in the road to perfection." Rowan shrugged, "The Newton Zone has been falling into decline even before we established ourselves as a power in this city, not even we can really save it."
"Then what the hell's the point of all that shit of your I took? You're so pissed off about some stupid ring. You even disregarded the money in comparison!" Clint growled.
"That ring contains a power beyond your shallow imagination." Rowan growled, "You are not worthy of using it! Now where the hell is it! Where is the other stuff?" Rowan asked.
"I don't have it anymore. If you hurry, you might find them before someone else does. You'd be surprised how far I can throw things. The ring is probably in Stadium Park by now!" Clint said, making a clever lie to keep Paula's involvement a secret. Rowan growled, he noticed Clint was not in fact carrying the boxes of money, or the one with the strange drug in it, but he could've been lying about the ring.
"How do I know you're not trying to keep the ring for yourself?" Rowan asked.
"Come on, it's a stupid old ring. What use is it to someone like me? I only stole that stuff to piss you off, and it looks like I succeeded very well." Clint smirked back.
Rowan grumbled, it did sound sincere enough. Clint did sound to him like one to just do something to piss them off. He must've been really mad at them about his old house.
Rowan growled, "Fine. But I want my friend back, or I will not leave."
Clint smirked. He had a feeling he knew what would happen if he let Morgan go, but he knew the results would be for naught, and it might actually be enough to scare the shit out of them.
"Fine, here you are." he said and shoved Morgan over to Harry and Rowan.
Rowan cleared his throat, "Well then, I guess we're off. I'll let you off with a warning this time kid. But if I find my ring is no longer around, I will swear upon my life to kill you if we meet again."
"If so, then I will look forward to your attempt, you jackass, now go." Clint taunted back.
Morgan snarled, but Rowan held him back, "Forget about him, Morgan. He'll be history some other day anyways. The rest of us will get him another time. The ring is more important to me now than his hide!"
Clint watched as the three turned to leave, and he watched them carefully as they began to jog off towards Monument Park, which was on it's way towards Stadium Park. He waited until they were a set distance away, and then turned around. He sensed out at them as they moved away. After he had been turned around for 3 seconds, he felt them stop, and head back in his direction. He decided to continue to act like he hadn't known.
"They're gonna try to axe me now when they think I'm not aware. Stupid bastards. Let them try. Gives me a real reason to bust their asses for this." he growled. Suddenly, he heard a loud boom ring through the park. He then felt a tiny object hit him in the back of the head, almost like a pebble.
BINGO. I KNEW IT. he thought to himself.
After 2 seconds, he turned around, a look of murderous rage, correctly directed at Harry, who had been holding out his Beretta, having apparently firing a shot.
Harry saw this and looked on in horror, "WHAT THE FUCK?! HE'S STILL STANDING?! HE'S NOT EVEN INJURED!"
Morgan's jaw was agape in horror as well. However when he looked at Rowan's face, he was puzzled to see Rowan had merely had a raised eyebrow at this.
"Rowan, he's still alive. An' Harry's right! It doesn't look like he even FELT dat!" Morgan stammered.
"I noticed that, boys." Rowan replied, and Clint noticed he did not express the same shock as his two friends.
He walked up a couple of steps close to Clint. "You... you're a bit different. Not like the other people around this place."
Clint growled, "What do you mean?"
Rowan smirked, a smirk that made Clint spooked. "I guess I finally get to test this on a LIVE target!" Rowan then shouted, a look of semi-glee on his face, as he threw his arms out. Clint could swear it almost looked like he was going to shoot a blast, but he couldn't sense anything, so he figured Rowan must've been trying to scare him.
"Look, I don't know what kind of shit you're trying to pull, but the deal's off. You're about to have your ass kicked around this park, you backstabbing liar!" Clint growled.
"I doubt that, you fool." Rowan smirked.
Clint chuckled, So he's going to actually fight me. He won't last very long. His powerlevel at best is close to 100. If I were still normal, I would be in serious trouble, but as I am now, he can't do shit to me!
Rowan furrowed his eyebrows, "Alright, let's get this over with!"
Clint suddenly looked on at him with a confused expression. As he looked at Rowan's green eyes, he swore he could see them beginning to glow lightly.
"WING BLASTER!!" he then heard Rowan scream. Clint suddenly found himself flying backwards almost 60 yards, smashing into a line of trees behind him. Not expecting such a sudden hit, he had his powerlevel down to about 25%, and the attack did its' fair share of damage.
"What the hell?!" he cried, pulled himself up, "What the hell was that?!"
"You might have noticed I don't appear to be holding a weapon. There's a reason I don't need one, and this is one of them! WING BLASTER!!" Rowan screamed.
Clint was again picked up by a large gust of wind and smashed through a few more trees. However this time he had his power at maximum, at least what he could do within the constraints of the curse.
Ouch! Dammit! What the hell is he doing!? I don't sense any change in his ki at all!
Rowan smirked, "Since you're about to become food to the wind, I guess I could explain that ring to you before you die. The ring, along with a strange drug was given to me by a mysterious benefactor. He claimed it was enchanted with the power to allow its' user to tap into the air currents and winds of the world. I used the ring for nearly two weeks and practiced my skills. Soon I found I was able to an ability of my own without having to wear the ring. I call it the Wing Blaster8. What do you think?"
Clint snarled, SHIT. That was MAGIC he used on me! No wonder I couldn't feel it! I can't sense Magic, and I hardly have any defense against it either! Dammit, I might actually need some help after all with this asshole!
Rowan smirked, still looking down at Clint's lying form, "So are you ready to curl up and die, or should I blast you one more time, to make my point. Heheheheh."
Clint smirked, "No, actually now it's YOUR turn, bastard!" he growled as he suddenly fired a medium-sized ki blast that hit it's mark true, hitting Rowan right in the stomach.
Harry and Morgan looked on in surprise as they watched their leader and best friend get walloped with a horrifying attack. Rowan looked as if he had been suckerpunched by a freight train as he flew back and smashed in to the ground, not moving. Clint flipped to his feet, and looked at Rowan with a look of satisfaction.
"Who's about to curl up and die now, you bastard?!" he growled.
Harry and Morgan stared at him with horrified looks on their faces, fearing they were next. Clint decided he would oblige and began to walk over, intending to make them squeal for their lives. Even if he didn't plan to kill them he didn't care how much he hurt them as long as they lived. As he began to draw in closer, he suddenly felt a serious hit to the back of his head, and was knocked to on his face, hitting the ground hard. He growled and got back up, just in time to dodge a...
A KI BLAST?! he thought in shock, as he looked over to Rowan, who had his arm outstretched as if he had been the attacker.
He looked on at Clint with a smirk, "Finally... a WORTHY opponent at last! So I'm not the only one who can use this strange spirit energy!"
"What the... you can use ki?! How?!" Clint asked in shock, and he was now shocked to find that Rowan's powerlevel was nowhere near as low as it had been a few moments ago. It was actually higher than his current powerlevel, if not almost 4 times more, enough to be a big problem. He quickly powered up as much as he could in reply. Unfortunately, due to the fact he was still affected by Oyatsu's Durty Durt Dur curse, he could only reach his sub-Super Saiya-jin powerlevel, which was still just a bit weaker than Rowan currently was.
"I learned how to use it about 2 or so weeks ago. It was around the 1st or so I think. Remember when I told you a mysterious benefactor gave me the ring? He also came to me with other knowledge. He told me the world had changed all around us, and that most of us were oblivious to the change. He told me that the changes allowed that with the right procedure, I could unlock my dormant energy and use it to hold an iron fist over the Crips. You see, I'm actually relatively new in terms of being a leader. The original leader, well let's just say he was on the verge of selling us out to our enemies, the Bloods, and when I learned this, I had to retire him, permanently."
"How... how could betray your code of honor like that?!" Clint growled, "I know better! All Crips are loyal to each other, to the core!"
Rowan chuckled, "I'm surprised you know about that little tidbit. What, were you a member in the past or something?"
"No. A good friend of mine was once a Crip. He told me of many warning signs, he told me you were rivals with the Bloods, and also the Gambits." Clint growled, "He told me that all Crips in the gang are always loyal to the core!"
"Well, you're friend's information is a slit outdated by now wouldn't you say? Besides, our original leader is the one who broke his code of honor, not me! I was merely enforcing the code! He was going to betray us, and I was the only one who knew of his intentions at the time because of my benefactor's information!" Rowan growled at Clint.
"So what if you can use Ki, or Magic? I still have the advantage of experience and more understanding of ki than you do Rowan!" Clint replied, igniting a Kienzan and preparing to throw it, "If you aren't aware, I would spend my efforts trying to dodge this, because if it hits you, you'll be in pieces!" he screamed and tossed the Kienzan at Rowan.
Rowan growled, "The Destructo Disc?! You can actually use the Destructo Disc?!"
Clint growled, "You know about the Kienzan too?!"
Rowan chuckled as he dodged the razor disc of ki somewhat swiftly, "So, I was right after all. I guess the worlds have merged in more ways than I thought! I saw a strange girl at the mall earlier. She looked much like that android chick on that Dragonball show. I almost shrugged it off as a costume, and so did my friends, but I had a deep feeling she really was who she turned out to be, and it turns out I was right after all!"
Clint growled in rage, DAMMIT! He's probably known about this from the start! But how?! How could he have... Then it slammed him as if he had been hit by a pile of bricks.
"BASTARD... THAT LITTLE BASTARD!!" Clint growled, clenching his fists.
Rowan was amused, "What are you frothing about?!"
"This 'benefactor' you speak of, what did he look like?" Clint asked cautiously.
"He looked to be a boy of about your age actually, a bit taller, and with the strangest orange eyes I'd ever seen." Rowan chuckled.
Clint's eyes turned nearly red with rage, "OYATSU! THAT SON OF A BITCH! I should've known!!"
"Ah yes, I do in fact remember that was what he called himself. I guess you know him, huh?" Rowan chuckled, as he suddenly charged at Clint.
Clint barely managed to dodge a series of punches and kicks, but Rowan finally caught up and decked him hard across the face, sending him flying backwards. Rowan zanzokened and appeared behind Clint, "WING BLASTER!!" and shot him diagonally into the air with another magic blast of wind energy.
He then appeared above Clint and axehandled him over the head viciously, sending Clint plummeting to the ground. Clint barely managed to avoid crashing, but Rowan had already caught up with him and shot a fourth Wing Blaster at him, sending Clint smashing backwards through an old and abandoned house. Clint was not able to recover fast enough and crashed into the ground, breathing hard.
Son of a bitch! Damn Oyatsu's curse! If I could just transform completely, I could smoke this guy! I'm sure of it!
However Clint knew the curse's current toll on him would not wear off for at least another four hours. He didn't even have a couple more minutes to last at this rate. Rowan was much more suited for battle than Clint had thought.
This is not my frickin' day! First Oyatsu almost kills us, and now this gang leader asshole actually has me on the ropes and I can't transform to full power due to Oyatsu's wretched curse!
Rowan walked up to him and picked Clint up by the collar. "You aren't too bad, at least you managed to actually hurt me a little bit. But I guess the hurt's more on you!" he finished as he tossed Clint violently back over into the park, causing him to crash along the edge of the creek separating the two ends of Waterworks Park.
Rowan walked up to him, and began to charge a massive ki blast into his arm, and aimed it straight at Clint. Clint knew in his damaged state that a hit of that power would likely knock him out for the count, but more than likely it would probably just kill him outright.
He sighed in anger, "Fine, finish it already." he said bitterly.
"MY PLEASURE!" Rowan shouted in glee, and swung his hand up to throw the blast. However he suddenly felt his arm lock up in place as if it had been grabbed.
Rowan growled, "What the hell?!"
However he barely had any time to say more, as he felt something smash into his back with the force of a speeding car. Rowan growled in pain and flipped over into the creek, landing very unpleasantly in the water, face first. He pulled himself out of the water, but before he could even lift his head up, he felt a stinging pain overtake him as he was knocked backwards at high speeds, crashing into a nearby building. Harry and Morgan, who had been watching their friend beat the shit out of Clint with glee, had now turned to horror as they saw what had attacked their friend.
"No way!" Morgan growled in disbelief.
Harry was pissed, but at the same time scared once again, "Wait a minute... haven't I seen her before?!"
Rowan crawled from the debris of the building in pain, his face horribly red with a large slap mark across the front of his face.
"ENOUGH. THIS ENDS NOW! NOW YOU'LL DEAL WITH ME!" Paula growled, cracking her knuckles at Rowan with a rare look of horrible anger.
Rowan gaped on, "It's you! The girl at the mall! What the hell are you doing here?! How did you do that?!"
"Shut up and get out of here, NOW." Paula growled.
"You have some damn nerve! Fine, so you might be stronger than the other one, but I don't think you're any less vulnerable to my Wing Blaster than you're friend was!"
Rowan growled, "WING BLASTER!!"
Paula felt the wind blow over her, but unlike Clint, she didn't budge a single inch, and she felt no damage from the attack.
Rowan backed up from her with a horrified expression, "NO!! IMPOSSIBLE!! HOW COULD YOU NEGATE THE WING BLASTER?!"
"I don't know, and I DON'T CARE! Get out of here now! This is your FINAL WARNING!" Paula screamed back, and releasing a massive burst of ki forward. Rowan realized then and there that his attack had been crashed in the worst possible way, but he would not back down, least of all from some frail-looking girl.
"DO YOUR WORST YOU BITCH! I DARE YOU! GO ON, KILL ME!" Rowan growled, but when he looked at Paula again, she was gone.
"Scum like you are not worth the time to destroy." she spoke, but this time from behind him. He turned his head, and saw her with her back to him, but she suddenly swung her arm and her fist smashed him in the face, sending him flying back and smashing into the ground, his face horribly bleeding. Barely conscious, Rowan saw Paula walk over him.
"By the way, my friend never had your stupid crap. I DID." she growled, pulling the jade ring out of the handbag attached to her dress belt.
Rowan gasped in surprise, "Damn... you." he gasped out one final time before he fell into unconsciousness.
Clint had pulled himself to his feet, recovering a bit from his injuries. He looked on at Paula with a horrified amazement. He had never seen that side of her in his life, not even when she had gotten on his and Jason's case about the voice serum joke. He trudged over towards her and the unconscious body of Rowan. As he came closer, he saw Paula pick his body up, and turn to Morgan and Harry, who were too terrified to try to even attack.
"You two, listen to me very carefully." she said in a calm, yet terrifying voice, as she tossed Rowan's battered body at their feet, "Take your friend, leader, whatever you regard him as, and get the heck out of this neck of the woods. Take your entire Crips gang with you. If you see anyone from the Bloods, give them the same warning. I don't care if they're your rivals or mortal enemies or whatnot, you warn them. I will not tolerate your crap in this place, and I'm quite sure the rest of my friends will not tolerate it either. Your era is over. It would best if you cut your losses and leave while you're all still alive. If I ever see you three harassing or terrifying anyone like this again, I swear upon my life that I will personally ANNIHILATE you myself." and after she said that, she began to glow red, and an aura of fire began to form around her body, burning the air wildly. That was more than enough to cause Harry and Morgan to take Rowan's unconscious body and run off at the fastest speeds they could muster.
After they left her sight for more than 30 long seconds, Paula let down her aura, and looked back to Clint. However Clint found odd to him that Paula's expression was now of extreme worry.
"Clint, thank goodness you're okay! I got here in time! I felt a large aura flare up, one that wasn't any of us, so I rushed over quickly." she said.
Clint sighed, "Thank you Paula, thank you very much. I don't... I don't know, but Oyatsu was one more step ahead of us than I realized."
"What?" Paula was taken back by this.
"Rowan... he knows Oyatsu. He met with him back on the first, before any of us started training. Oyatsu was the one that gave him the ring. And yes, it really was enchanted. He was spamming some wind magic left and right. I had no way to block it, and not to mention he was just strong enough to be a bit too much for me at the best powerlevel I could currently reach. If only that damn curse wasn't a factor, I could've probably beaten him without you having to reveal yourself." Clint replied, "Oyatsu also taught him how to use ki. He also knew who #18 was at the mall from the start. Apparently he also recently killed the former leader of the gang. He claimed the guy was going to sell the gang out to the Bloods, so Rowan took revenge into his own hands and won control of the gang."
Paula was speechless, and while she didn't show it to Clint, her anger was burning on the inside, That creep! I can't believe this! I guess it's true! Oyatsu is probably out there, laughing at us both at this very moment from the shadows!
"Clint, there's nothing we can do for now about it. We've defeated Oyatsu and Rowan though. At least they'll both be out of the picture for a while. I'm proud of you though. You were willing to stand up to him no matter what. I didn't see everything, but I heard you willing to die instead of run. Although it was brave, I don't recommended giving in to death like that though unless you're absolutely sure it was hopeless." Paula replied.
Clint grumbled, "Well it's not like I could do much else. I couldn't teleport like Goku, and I don't have anything close to your level of speed. He had no clue you had been there until he was already too hurt to try to fight back. It also seems like you're a lot stronger than I thought."
"Thanks I guess. I can't lie to you though. Nina and I have been training hard lately. We started on the 12th, after the attack of those Al-Qaeda goons." Paula admitted.
Clint smirked, "You know, if Alex were here, he'd probably starting going on about how he's worried about you getting hurt while training or something, or some other bullshit pride thing like that to cover his ass. But I could care less. I know you could fight. Your past with Goku, and then the Giygas conflict makes it well known. Keep training, both of you. Maybe one day you'll actually surpass Goku himself. Something tells me you could." Clint admitted himself, forcing a small smile.
"Well, if you really think so." Paula said with a chuckle, taken back that Clint thought she could actually surpass Goku of all people, but he was probably just trying to be funny, or nice anyways.
However both of them suddenly looked northwards.
"Nina! She's coming our way!" Clint exclaimed.
"Figures, she can sense magic, and so can Buu. She's probably making sure we're okay." Paula replied.
As they looked up, Nina's form appeared overhead. She flew in close and landed with a few feet of the two. Her expression looked neutral.
"You guys okay?" she asked almost blankly.
"Yeah, we're okay now. It's over Nina." Paula responded, but her face turned to surprise as she suddenly saw a shocking site. Nina had suddenly swung out and slapped Clint to the ground. Paula knew it wasn't a possession or anything that might have to do with Oyatsu, nor had her blow been very strong, but it was still uncalled for in her opinion.
"Nina, what was that for?!" she asked.
Nina appeared to ignore Paula, "YOU IDIOT! HOW COULD YOU BE SO STUPID?!" she yelled at Clint.
"What did HE do?!" Paula growled.
Nina sighed angrily, "He challenged those three guys from the mall. And here I thought Vernon and Alex could be filled with pride to the point of such idiocy, but I would've never expected Clint to be that way!"
"What was the big deal? We beat them, didn't we?" Paula asked.
"Paula, you don't understand. Remember when I told you I knew them before? I knew them by name and by their abilities. I knew from the start Rowan had magic, and I knew he was one of the Crips. When Clint challenged him, he was basically challenging the wrath of the entire gang. Rowan almost killed him. If it had not been for YOU, he wouldn't be alive now!" Nina replied.
Clint got to his feet, and growled back at Nina, much to her surprise, "WELL I'M SO DAMN SORRY IF HE AND HIS BASTARD FRIENDS SCREWED UP MY NEIGHBORHOOD TO HELL AND BACK, DEFILED MY ORIGINAL HOUSE, AND EVEN DESTROYED MY GARAGE AND STOLE MY PARENTS' PROPERTY. I'LL ASK YOU NEXT TIME I DECIDE I MIGHT WANT TO SEEK JUSTICE!" Clint growled in anger, making Nina back away in shock. She had not been aware of any of those things happening.
"Clint wait... I'm sorry. I... I didn't know they had done all of that." she then looked to Paula, "I take it he's telling the truth. You were with him the entire time from what I could tell."
"Yes Nina, he's telling the truth. In fact, he knows more about me than I realized." Paula replied.
"What do you mean?" Nina asked.
"He knows more about my battle against Giygas than you do." Paula replied, "He knows almost everything."
"How?" Nina asked.
"The same way I know a decent part of your own past Nina." Clint replied, making both women look at him.
"Nina too?! Don't tell me you saw her in a game too?" Paula stated.
Clint sighed, "Actually, YES. There is a game based off of a small section of her life. Remember when she told us about "St. Evans"? She actually was taking about someone called "DeathEvan", a demon who used the power of faith and prayer to become stronger for a strike on her own world." Clint explained bluntly.
Nina was shocked out of her mind, "WHAT?! You've known this since we met?! And you never told me?!"
"Hey, I didn't expect Paula to take what I knew about her seriously, so how could I be confident enough to think YOU'D believe that I knew of your past?" Clint asked her in defense.
Nina sighed, realizing it made sense, "Man, this is BIG. I had no idea you knew this much." she said to Clint.
Nina looked over to them though, she decided she wanted to change the subject, and FAST. "Guys, there's another reason I wanted to find you. Goku has most of the rest of the gang gathered at his house."
"I know, he plans to teach them Kaioken, isn't he?" Clint assumed.
"Yes Nina, he can sense ki. He learned on his own. He can't mask it too well though." Paula cut in before Nina could ask.
"Well then you're gonna have a hard time getting the hang of Kaioken until you do then Clint." Nina replied, "The Kaioken requires a good amount of experience of both sensing and masking ki it seems. It sounds like Devin and Alex have gotten a foothold on it, although not a big one. A basic Kaioken at best, according to Goku. He's even got the guy who taught HIM how to use it helping them out." Nina explained.
"Well, I guess we might as well join up with the others. We're the only ones missing out on the party." Paula said to herself.
"Yeah, I guess so. Besides, Clint'll probably need a sensu bean or something. But I don't know if we should tell them what happened. At best, it's your business, not theirs." Nina replied.
"Well, I guess we should get to them either way." Clint said, "I'm not gonna be back in this neck of the woods for a while, and boy are my parents in for a hell of a story. Oyatsu and now Rowan, and the disappearance of the garage in the old neighborhood."
With a final salute to the former conditions of the neighboring areas, and hopefully to a different era, the three picked up slowly into the air and turned southwest-ward, and flew off at top speeds, speeding to their friends at Alex and Goku's neighborhood.
Back at Goku's neck of the woods, the Saiya-jin hero had decided that in addition to trying to teach Devin, Alex, Dusty, Virgil, Dwayne, Steve, Radditz, Dan, Teresa and Heero the Kaioken, he would actually introduce them personally to the demi-god who had taught him. After North Kaio had declared it was time to really see how they would fare, the Kaio had suddenly teleported in near them. He had revealed to Goku and the Misfits present that he too had learned how to use the Kai Kai, he and the other Kaios having been taught by Kaibitoshin and Rou Dai Kaioshin in the past. During some of the initial training process, it had been noticed by both Goku and North Kaio that Devin and Alex, and then Radditz had been getting the hang of it the best, After about 20 to 30 minutes of trying, both and Alex and Devin had finally each been able to imitate a basic Kaioken, which was basically 1.5 times their normal powerlevel.
Radditz soon also got the hang it about 10 minutes prior, but unlike Alex and Devin, his actually was able to reach 2x without much of a drain on the body. Goku was a bit impressed at this show of will from his older brother. Soon after, Heero had gotten the hang of it, but like Alex and Devin, he could only use the basic 1.5x Kaioken. Goku noticed Vernon and Jason were trying, but they were still falling just a bit short of expectations. Additionally, Dwayne and Steve were also getting close to getting it to show. Soon, Dan had also managed to pull of a 1.5 Kaioken, followed by Teresa, who while she had only gotten to a 1.5, had managed to split off an energy clone and make both herself and the clone simultaneously do Kaiokens side by side at the same strength. Even Piccolo was impressed by that particular feat of strength. Finally, Dusty and Virgil were still having some problems letting loose the energy properly. For Virgil, his inexperience was unfortunately showing very well. Dusty was close to a breakthrough though, much closer than Virgil.
Soon after so, Goku had finally sensed Clint, Paula and Nina coming in their direction. "Ah, finally! The others are finally coming this way!" he said.
North Kaio looked to him, "Late students, Goku?" he chuckled.
"Well I guess so. I'll see if I can't find out why they didn't come right away." Goku said.
"I'll watch over the others for the moment, you go meet your other friends." Kaio replied.
Goku nodded and picked up into the air and flew off to meet up with Clint, Paula and Nina. About half a mile ahead he ran into all three of them. He was little shocked to see Clint in his banged up state.
"Wow, Clint what happened to you?" Goku asked.
"I really really don't wanna talk about it right now. All I can say is I need a Sensu bean. Please." Clint asked.
"Coming right up." Goku said, throwing Clint a bean, which he promptly ate. Clint soon felt his body lighten up and heal over completely, and had sensed his powerlevel rise a small amount.
Paula looked over at Goku, /Goku, I NEED you to see me tonight, or get in contact with me by yourself. I must talk to you./ she had spoke out to him mentally.
To her surprise, she heard him reply, /Alright then. You guys come for Kaioken lessons for now?/
Paula sighed, /If we're not too late, yeah./
"Guys, if you want to get the basics on Kaioken, come with me. I got North Kaio over here on a break to help us out." Goku spoke up.
Clint looked at him with surprise, "North Kaio himself?! Are you sure?"
"Yep. Turns out he learned how to master the Kaioken himself. He can do it to around twenty-five without having to do it in bursts." Goku said.
"No way!" Clint was shocked, "I don't wanna miss this!" he said and flew off at high speeds towards the others.
Paula and Nina simply shrugged at Goku and followed in behind them, until they reached the others. As they landed, Clint watched as he saw Alex, Devin, Dan, Teresa and now Dwayne and Dusty using a basic Kaioken, and Radditz using a times two.
"I see you're all quite the busy beavers." he stated.
"Hey Trouble, where were you? We got curious when you didn't arrive a couple of hours ago?" Devin asked. Apparently he didn't seem to know about the incidents of earlier. He must've been focusing his senses on himself for Kaioken so much if all of the events of earlier had passed even him without knowledge.
"Oh you know Devin, exploring around and all that crap. I knew what you were doing. It wasn't like I couldn't ask Goku to help me learn Kaioken at a later time. Besides I heard from Nina I might not be able to use it right just yet, since I can't mask my ki." Clint replied.
"If you want me to help you understand masking, let me know." Goku called from behind him.
Clint looked over at the older Saiya-jin, "Very well, then teach me, oh enlightened one." he joked, wanting to get into a more cheerful mood, and not let the depression of his neighborhood bother him while in front of the others.
Goku chuckled, and had pulled him over to the side to explain how he had understood how to hide his own energy. After Clint had heard all of what he had to say, he was able to almost immediately mask his ki to his will and bidding, and he had to literally smack himself upside the head.
"Wow, am I a dumbass or what, Goku. I never thought to look at masking ki that way. Thank you much. All I have to say is if I had continued doing it my way, I would've never gotten far." Clint told him.
"Don't sweat it. Now, I think you should join Nina and Paula along with the others in trying out the Kaioken." Goku suggested.
In fact, he took a look in their direction. Now Steve and Vernon had finally managed to pull off a basic Kaioken, and Jason looked to be on the verge of getting it ri... scratch that, he had just finally done his first basic Kaioken at that very moment. He then looked over to Paula and Nina as Clint began to join in with the group. He looked at Paula, who aside from possibly Radditz had looked to be the most calm while attempting the move. He had noticed that she suddenly had been able to pull off a Kaioken times three within less than 10 minutes of try outs. He was impressed, but curious to how Paula had picked up the Kaioken so much faster than the others. He noticed Nina was still having problems fully bring a basic Kaioken to the surface, and Clint experiencing the trouble of the first failed tries. However Dusty finally managed to pull off his basic Kaioken right.
Vernon soon finally got his basic Kaioken working right. Soon a couple minutes later, Devin had managed to reach a times two, followed by Radditz reaching times three, and then Virgil had finally managed to get the basic Kaioken done right, which had shocked North Kaio out of his mind, and had shocked Alex out of what would've been a successful attempt of reaching times two. However he didn't fret, as his next attempt did in fact reach times two. Teresa had managed to reach times two next, followed by Dwayne and Heero, and then Dan. About 10 minutes later, Clint had finally broke out and managed to pull a successful basic Kaioken, and Nina had also managed to reach the same point, but she looked to be gaining the upper hand on Clint. Vernon had then gotten to times two as well, followed by Steve. Paula had then shocked North Kaio by pushing up one more level, to a times four, before she decided to stop for now, and sat down on a table and watched the others.
After about 15 more minutes of training, Goku had called a time out, allowing everyone else to take a break. In the meanwhile, Vegeta had walked outside once again, having finally gotten all the transmitters in the scouters up and running.
"Kakarot, rejoice, for the scouters are finally ready. Good, I see everyone's finally here, and even that crazy Kaio's here." he smirked.
North Kaio sighed at Vegeta's presence, "Hello Vegeta, how's your training been?"
"Fairly well, despite some surprises from some of our other apprentices here." the saiya-jin prince replied as he set the briefcase of overclocked scouters down on the table.
He then looked over at everyone, minus North Kaio, "Alright you foolish children, peasants, cyborgs and nameks alike." he said chuckling at the odd and sometimes nasty glares he received from the others, "I have done some important work, and it is actually quite convenient for me that you've all gathered here all in one place. I have activated the transmitters in all of the overclocked scouters we got from that clown Oyatsu, and I'm ready to hand out one to each of you. Now, when I call you up, I will hand you a scouter type dependant on how well I think you've been doing. When you do come up, take your scouter, and say nothing to me until later if you must." he then smirked at them as he opened the briefcase. He pulled out a set of five of the purple-lensed scouters.
He put one over his face, and then said, "Kakarott, you get purple. Come here and get it."
Goku walked up happily and took his scouter, putting it on his face. "You know, I like the look of the scouter on my face." he stated to himself as he walked back.
Vegeta chuckled, calling Goku an idiot under his breath.
He pulled out a third Purple Scouter, "Namek, you also get a purple scouter."
Piccolo grumbled and used his ki to levitate the scouter over to him. He stared at it funny, and after about 20 to 30 seconds of fumbling with it, he had actually managed to get the scouter on his ear, but his ridiculous appearance had aroused a large amount of chuckles from everyone, even Paula who thought he looked really goofy with a scouter on those large ears.
Vegeta then pulled out a fourth purple scouter, "Cyborg boy, you'll also get purple. Enjoy it, you bike-riding nutcase." he ended with a smirk, as #17 grumbled, walking up and taking his scouter and walking back to his seat.
Vegeta then pulled out a fifth purple scouter, "Buu, you also get purple. Just try not to eat the damn thing." he replied, tossing Buu over the scouter instead of asking Buu to come to him. Buu caught the scouter and immediately put it on his own ear, appearing to like the feeling of it on his ear.
He then pulled out an Orange-lensed scouter. "Cyborg girl, this orange scouter is given to you in part as a reward for your... ahem... much appreciated help against that bastard Oyatsu." he growled, a little annoyed that he would have to give her the highest level scouter out of all the types he was handing out. Although the orange-lensed scouters were not the best out of all the known colors, no one else was going to be getting one, or a scouter of a higher rank. #18 smirked sweetly at Vegeta and she grabbed the orange scouter and placed it on her ear with amusement. Vegeta then pulled a Navy-blue lensed scouter out of the case.
"Radditz, you will receive the Navy-Blue ranked scouter. It is the next highest scouter level below our level of purple. Consider it a good will present, a thanks for helping us out." Vegeta had said, as Radditz had accepted the scouter from his prince, almost as if he were being upgraded in class. He walked back to his seat and immediately put the scouter on his face, feeling the familiar feeling of nostalgia dwell in his head. Vegeta pulled out a second navy-blue scouter.
"Nina, this scouter is also your rank, for while you may not be as strong as Kakarott, the Namek, and some of us, you are still in a league higher than many of the rest of us present." Vegeta said, blunt and to the point. Nina waked up and accepted the scouter, and went back to her seat.
Vegeta pulled out a third Navy-Blue scouter. "Paula, to you I also present the Navy-Blue scouter. It is obvious you and Nina are at around similar strengths, and also Kakarot would probably pester me left and right if I had given you any lesser level. He wanted me to give you a purple scouter, but we'll have to see first." he said, and then looked to a slightly pouting Goku, who gave his friend a raspberry.
Vegeta mentally chuckled, as Paula walked up and grabbed her scouter. She decided to mess around with it, and put it on her ear for the time being. Vegeta then pulled out one of the normal blue-colored scouters, and looked back to the others.
"Teresa, this blue scouter is rewarded to you for your own efforts in the battle with that clown Oyatsu. If it had not been for your quick thinking, #18 might not have had enough time to save us after defeating Oyatsu." Teresa blushed and walked over, and accepted her scouter, realizing it was of the same kind she had to destroy when she had confronted Oyatsu earlier that day. Vegeta pulled out a second blue scouter.
"Dan, this blue scouter is also rewarded to you for your efforts in improvement. Despite being the victim of Oyatsu, you attempted to fight back when it counted, and this is also awarded in part for your endurance on the 11th." Vegeta said to Dan, who then had walked up and accepted his scouter.
Vegeta pulled out a third and a fourth blue scouter. "Dwayne Johnson, Steve Williams, I award both of you this pair of blue scouters for your willingness to keep going, despite the trails of your own past. Dwayne I am quite aware you have a family who is worried about you, and I know Steve has his own problems at home. I too can understand such a feeling. Yet this whole time you have kept plugging away, in a way some of the others have not yet proven to match up to yet."
The two wrestlers walked up and received their scouters, then heading back to their seats. Vegeta pulled out a fifth, sixth and SEVENTH blue scouter and looked over at Vernon, Alex and Jason.
"To Alex, Vernon, and even Jason, as one of your personal teachers, Kakarott, the Namek, the Cyborg boy and I agreed that you three are worthy of receiving these scouters. Now come up and accept them before I change my mind." he said, joking around at the last comment to make them get up a little fast, which made Alex grumble at him slightly. However he took his scouter, and so did Vernon and Jason. The three then took their seats. Vegeta then reached for an eighth blue scouter.
He looked over, "Finally, this last blue scouter goes to Clint. His strange ability and efforts have caught the attention of Kakarott and I in particular."
Clint smiled and walked up, accepting his scouter. Vegeta looked on, and pulled out a set of four Cyan colored scouters.
"The last scouters go over to Devin, Dusty, Heero and Virgil. Although you are still learning and progressing along, there will be a day soon you will be upgraded to the level of blue scouters, but that will not quite be today." he said. Devin, Virgil, Dusty and Heero each accepting their scouters, although Devin was a little annoyed that he was basically being ranked among the lowest among his friends, at least according to the scouter colors. Virgil didn't seem to care too much, but Heero and Dusty were slightly annoyed in the same way as Devin was.
Vegeta spoke up again, "If anyone need a recap of why you have received these scouters. It's more because it will provide us a means of communication between one and another. Sure you can of course use them gauge each others' powerlevels, but since you're all able to hide your kis now, don't take most of the average numbers you see at face value. Radditz can tell you that was big mistake in his own past if you ever need clarification."
Radditz sighed and nodded, not wanting to be reminded of how stupid and cocky he had been when he had been defeated by his brother and Piccolo. However his thoughts were broken, when a series of beeps filled the immediate area, and then disappeared. Then the beeps chimed again, and then again. Dwayne looked down and pulled a cell phone out of his pocket. Taking his scouter off, he looked at the caller ID.
"Hey, Steve... we're being called by Vince." he called over to his partner.
"What? I wonder what he wants." Steve replied. Dwayne and Steve looked over to the others and moved a small distance away, so the others couldn't interrupt the conversation about to occur. Dwayne hit the answer button on the phone display.
"Well, what brings you to call, Vince?" Steve asked into the phone.
"Austin? Where's Rock?" Vince's voice responded, sounding slightly distressed.
"Right here, Vince my man." Dwayne replied, "What prompts this call?"
"Good, you two are alright." Vince spoke up, almost sounding frantic, which made the two wrestlers concerned.
"Yeah we're fine. You know we're here in Canton, so what's this about?" Steve asked.
"Damn, I heard you two were attacked earlier this morning." Vince replied. This made Dwayne and Steve confused, how could Vince have known about the attack?
"Wait, when did you hear this?" Dwayne asked.
"I got an anonymous tip that you and some of your new friends got attacked this morning, apparently by someone who has the power to take over a person's body or something." Vince replied, almost sounding as if he himself couldn't believe what he was saying.
"Who else could've known about our battle with Oyatsu?" Steve asked over to Dwayne.
"I'm not sure, but don't worry Vince, we're both okay now. Everyone is." Dwayne answered.
"Good, now although I'm sure I needn't remind you two, but tomorrow is the Pay-Per-View event. Make sure you guys are there on time. We went through all the trouble to get everyone to agree to move the event to Gund Arena in Cleveland, and the effort's futile if you're both not there." Vince replied. Dwayne and Steve had remembered of the event, although they had not been dwelling on it much since Oyatsu's attack.
"Thanks for the reminder Vince, but we'll be there, don't worry your head off about it." Steve replied.
It was then Dwayne had to ask the question that was on his mind, "Vince, have Dany and Simone made it over there yet?"
"Yes Rock, you're wife and child are here with us in Cleveland. They're looking very forward to seeing you and Austin at the event. Another reason you two must get here early tomorrow. It will be at 8:00pm, like most other Pay-Per-View events, so you'll need to get there early based on whatever method you can use. I hear you two can actually fly with something like energy, so I guess it won't be too hard for you to get here." Vince answered.
Steve suddenly thought of something, "Wait a second Vince. I need to make an important request. Do you think we could take our new friends with us to the event? I know most of them are big wrestling fans, especially the one we told you we've been hanging with since we got here."
Vince replied, "Not a problem Austin. I take it you want them at the front near the ring, am I right?"
"Yeah, perfect Vince." Steve replied.
"Just so we're clear, how many of them are there exactly, and how many are actually wanting to go?" Vince asked.
The two wrestlers realized this might be the best time to ask everyone, "Give us a few minutes Vince, by strange luck, you called us while we were all gathered in one place. We'll ask them." Dwayne replied.
He then put the phone down on the table and called over to the others, "Hey guys! I need to know if any of you are interested with going with us to a Pay-Per-View event in Cleveland!"
Clint, Alex, Devin, Vernon, Dusty, Dan and Jason immediately perked up. #17 and #18 looked amused as well. Goku and Vegeta were confused a bit. Piccolo grumbled an incoherent phrase.
"Are you saying you could get us all into an event?!" Dusty asked.
"Yes. Vince is on the phone as we speak. He wants to know how many of you are going." Clint, Alex, Jason, Devin, Vernon, Dusty and Dan immediately accepted, Virgil decided to accept too, as did Nina. Piccolo grumbled again, but then he smirked, "I guess I have nothing else to do."
Vegeta sighed, "I guess it won't kill me to get out of this city for a while."
Goku smiled, "Cool, I always wanted to see one of those events live."
Radditz had grown a bit fond of the concept of seeing people beat each other up for sport, so he agreed too.
Heero also decided maybe he would gain an appreciation for the few wrestling moves he had if he saw some demonstrations, and decided to go too.
Paula said yes too, deciding it might be fun to see other places aside from Canton, and also it might give her a better understanding of Dwayne and Steve's original lifestyle.
And Teresa decided she would go with the majority vote. It was free event, so she didn't want to waste it.
"Hey, will Triple H, Angle, Undertaker and Kane be there too?" Dusty had asked.
"They're all probably going to the event." Steve replied, as Dwayne was confirming that all twenty-one of them were going to be going.
Dwayne then walked over with the phone, "Vince said he'll probably want to meet with all of us at the event. We'll also get to see my wife and daughter there too." he then looked at Steve, "Hey, you think Debra will be there too?"
Steve sighed, he wasn't honestly sure if he really wanted to think on that, "I guess we'll find out at the event."
After some more chatter between the two wrestlers with Vince, they got off the phone, and looked over to the others. "Well, now that we know we have to be prepared for the Pay-Per-View, we need to get to our own personal training again. We won't be able to train with you guys normally tomorrow, because we'll need to keep our moves in practice. I'm sure Vince will need us to compete in one event or another. We'll also have to leave early ahead of you guys." Dwayne told them.
Goku spoke up, "Wait, then that'll be good. I could probably use my Shunken Idou to teleport us all to you. Just remember to call or have your ki elevated so we know where you're at."
Steve looked over, "Wait, I didn't know you could teleport."
"Yeah Goku, you had Shunken Idou, and yet you didn't just teleport over to us during the conflict with Oyatsu. What was up with that?!" asked Alex.
"First off, I vowed to myself that since I met with the rest of you that I would only use the Shunken Idou in emergencies, and not for picking you up from one place to another. There are too many privacy issues with just teleporting to you at my leisure. Secondly, at the time, I didn't think Oyatsu was that much of a threat. Hey, even I can make mistakes." Goku replied, shaking his head.
"What do you mean, too many privacy issues?" asked Devin.
"You know, teleporting to one of you while you're asleep, or while you're in the shower, stuff like that, or while some other family member of yours is doing something. There's no way ki sense is so precise that you can use it to know WHAT the person's every move is." Goku replied, and Vegeta could swear he saw the slightest hint of blush on his face as he said that.
/Wait a second... What did you do Kakarott? It sounds like you made this decision from trial and error./ Vegeta said to him mentally.
Goku sighed back, and began to mentally explain his little run in back on the 2nd, one day before they had all started to train everyone. When he finished, Vegeta burst out laughing mentally, /Hahahaha! Now I understand! That had to make you feel very strange when that happened!/
Goku sighed, /More of I felt like I was the stupidest person in the world at the moment./
Meanwhile North Kaio cleared his throat. "Goku, Vegeta, Piccolo, Radditz, Buu, #18, #17, and all of the rest of you. I'm sorry I can not stay any longer. Dai Kaio wants me back at his planetoid now. I'm glad I for once actually got to get out of there, even if only for around an hour or so, but being a Kaio is a much busier job these days than it used to be. I will talk to you all later."
The others had then watched as he activated his Kai Kai technique and teleported back off into the afterrealm. When he disappeared, the others all looked to each other, wondering what they should do next. Devin in particular was interested in get back to his training, however he felt an odd feeling around him, almost as if something was loose, that he couldn't put his hand on. He looked around briefly, searching for the source of this strange feeling he felt in his mind. He could've sworn he felt some kind of strange presence near him. After a few minutes of trying to pinpoint the source with no luck, he decided to give up for the moment. Maybe it wasn't time for him to know what that odd sense was just yet.
Soon, Dwayne and Steve had bid farewell to their friends, and flew off towards their place near Dusty's house. Dusty called out and followed them from behind, telling Devin he was skipping the rest of the day's training. Devin shrugged at him, realizing Dusty had good reason to be curious, as he was one of the group's largest wrestling fans. He realized though that left Heero and Virgil to train with him.
He did wonder as he looked to Clint, "Hey Clint, you wanna still train the rest of the day?" Clint weighed the thoughts in his head, and decided he would do so.
He was still a little pissed off with the discoveries of the day, and of his near-death at the hands of Rowan. He knew that he the curse would soon wear off on him, and then he realized that it was time he was going to attempt to reach the power of a Super Saiya-jin 2. He could use all the preparation training Devin and Virgil could give him.
Meanwhile, Dan, Teresa and Radditz decided they were going back to Dan's place to make further progress on the spaceship. However then they had said that, Devin had suddenly changed his mind about training for the day. He had wanted to be with those guys once they finally did get that ship working. Maybe he could put his own hand into fixing it. He asked Clint and Virgil about coming with them. Clint decided to come along, but Virgil said he was going to go to the vacant lot and train by himself.
Virgil had parted ways with all of them and flew over to the lot, followed by Clint, Devin, Heero, Dan, Teresa and Radditz saying their farewells and flying back to Dan's house. Alex, Jason and Vernon had decided they were going to stay with Goku and Vegeta for the time being, honing their Kaioken skills, at least until they knew they could use their normal Super Saiya-jin levels again anyways. Piccolo and #17 decided to stay with them as well.
#18 on the other hand had declined their offer to help them train the younger three, saying she had just bought a house near Waterworks Park and was gathering up things to put there for a living space. She did not have time for training at the moment, not to mention she looked forward to trying out all those clothes she bought. She could almost swear she was drooling at the thought of all those clothes. She bid her own farewell to all of them, and flew back over towards the middle of Canton.
Buu decided he would go back to his own spot to meditate. Buu had taken all of North Kaio and Goku's words about the Kaioken into consideration, but Buu was curious to if his body could even activate the Kaioken technique. He knew he was not made of the same things a normal organic being was, therefore a Kaioken could possibly have devastating consequences for him.
Nina and Paula both decided they would just head back to their houses. Paula was tired again from all of that use of the Kaioken. Even though she could use four, she had definitely been able to feel the draining effects, and she realized she might have come too close to overdoing it back there. Besides, she had a lot on her mind from the rest of the day. Nina was also a little worn out as well, and she wasn't in the mood for training at the moment. The two bid each other goodbye, and then they told the others their own goodbyes, and they blasted off into the distance...
Part 11: 8
1 Yes, I never forgot the fact that Goku is still looking for his grandfather to one day apologize for crushing him to death as a young Oozaru.
2 Paula means that in EarthBound, teddy bears were considered in a way to be like a shield during the lesser parts of the game. Not to mention she herself owned a few, and had one with her when she joined you. I always believed she was a collector of them. Hey, even a psychic has to have a hobby, man. :P
3 I also know the whole afterlife tournament was 'filler' as well. Remember, Devin has seen the show, which has the filler scenes shown. For all we know, in the Misfits' reality this may or may NOT have actually happened. I'll probably confirm what actually happened another time.
4 I might as well inform everyone, all of this about my many houses is true. I did in fact live in three different places. The first I lived in for about 14 years, then I had to go to the second house, the one Paula lives in now, for about a year, until my grandfather died. We got the trailer he left behind, therefore I moved down to Canton South district. Basically, these were some of the key events to the creation of the story itself. If I had not come to South and met Alex and the others, I would've never started the original versions of Misfits. -.-;
5 Yeah, I realized I haven't really had Goku teleport too much so far in this story. But it would be a good reason not to do it all the time. Goku doesn't usually just teleport to someone on a casual basis from what I recall on the show, so he probably had a run-in like this at some point one time, therefore he'll only teleport in emergencies or if he's teleporting large groups of people.
6 Yeah, I guess this is a bit of a 'curve ball', but really, it doesn't make much real sense that North Kaio could develop a move of his own design, yet never actually master it. I decided he deserves some justice and he finally mastered his own move, and yes he's grown a lot stronger over the years. It's be 20 years since he taught Goku the Kaioken, so there's plenty of time he could've used to get stronger, dead or not. :P
8 The Wing Blaster is an attack of magic from a game I will not mention just yet. Devin gave me the idea to eventually use this attack. More attacks like it might appear in the future. :P
Forward to Saga 4 >