The Next Generation
“I dunno….I just hate the way things are going right now,” the man mused.
“Why’s that?” the other one present asked, shrouded in cloth of black.
“Nothing is as it once was,” the man answered.
“Nothing was as it is meant to be,” the shrouded man said, the shadow of his hood covering all but his pale mouth.
“How can you be so sure? I mean…life is fine now…but deep down there’s just this deep rooted pain, and it follows me wherever I go,” the man asked.
“What is this pain?” the hooded man asked.
“I was….betrayed,” he answered.
“How were you betrayed?” he asked, stroking his chin.
“Someone….who mattered….someone who meant everything….went behind my back and joined with an ally I trusted. They were lovers. He took what I had,” the man answered.
“Does this….person still care for you?” the robed man asked.
“Yes….with all of her heart,” the man answered.
“Then why do you continue to have these…feelings?” the man asked.
“Because….I fear it will happen again,” the man answered.
“Do you wish to forgive them?” the man asked.
“Yes…I think of nothing else,” the man answered.
“The first step to forgiving them….is to forgive yourself,” the robed man said quietly, standing. He left the room without another word. The man thought for a moment, then sat straight in his chair. He wet his index finger and thumb on his left hand slightly, and put out the burning candles. How could he forgive himself? After all it wasn’t him that- no….it was. Everything was his fault. A tear fell. Then another. And another.
“Tonight….I wish to let go of this…..”
Chapter One: The Gathering
He stumbled into the master’s chamber of the first level of Hell. He threw his cracked black helmet to the ground. It made a loud noise in the silence of the room. The Dark Knight fell to his knees in front of his weakened master Apocalypse Modeus. Nearly all of the chamber had collapsed on the Hell Lord, and the grievous wounds he suffered in the battle against the Triforce Team on Zedusria were still gushing black rivers, and his life still faded at a near constant level.
“Yes….my lord?” the Dark Knight asked.
“Drink my blood servant….become my true general now,” Apocalypse Modeus said in a weak but menacing growl.
“Yes my lord,” the Dark Knight complied, dipping his hands in one of the numerous puddles of black liquid littering the chamber. The blood spilled down his chin, burning away his weak mortal flesh. He cried out in agony as the last traces of humanity disappeared from his spirit and body. His eyes glowed unnaturally, and he felt a superior strength now.
“Now…while we wait….do my bidding….find them and kill them in the most effective way possible,” Apocalypse Modeus ordered.
“Yes my lord,” the Dark Knight bowed, placing the black helmet back on his changed face.
The man was about six feet tall. Exact height, he did not know. It had been awhile since he felt the need to really look. He wore standard orange and blue saiya-jin combat boots, tied tightly. Sky blue pants and a shirt and sash of the same color adorned his body. A rough blonde beard had begun to grow in on his face. His blue eyes were still as fierce as ever, though brightened by the addition of kin to the house.
He was thirty now, but if asked, he would say the events that made him into the person he was today seemed to have occurred just yesterday. How did he look at himself? He looked at himself simply really. A poke’mon master in the small peaceful town of Pallet. He owned a gym in the Black league, and was the leader of the Skull gym. Was being the operative word. The league had retired long ago after the surge of young poke’mon trainers in the area decreased. What else was he? A Digidestined. He wielded a Digivice, and had had numerous adventures in a world that didn’t truly exist in the physical plane. But he wasn’t alone in that endeavor.
But to really answer the question “Who am I?” he had to delve much deeper. Through an accident, he ran into a hero of Hyrule. A Hylian named Link. This was also the day he met the princess of Hyrule, Zelda, and the Prince of Darkness, Ganon. Things occurred, tragedies appeared, and a cataclysm brewed underneath the world. An old life faded, and in what seemed like a moment’s passing, he was the king of this world known as Hyrule, and the blood of a saiya-jin warrior flowed throughout his veins.
In the wake of this he had become a competent swordsman, an incredible warrior in the hand to hand arts, and a moderate fighter in the use of ki energy. He had gained countless partners, and a piece of the sacred Triforce, the relic of Hyrule, left behind when the planet was completed countless ages ago. The bearers of the Triforce pieces, Jet and Zelda, Link, and Shinota were all gifted with children ten years ago. Of these three children, one was lost, and because of that, Link left the team of fighters.
Soon afterward, a fight ensued on the fields of the planet Zedusria, a battle against the foul Hell Lord Apocalypse Modeus. They won the battle, though blood was shed and land was scorched. The man’s train of though was broken by a flicker of light. First flashing, then steady.
“Yoo hoo….hello? knock knock, anybody there?” Goku asked, playfully tapping Jet in the head.
“Wha….yeh….yeah…why are all the lights…..oh,” Jet said, feeling slightly stupid. Lately he had gone into deep thought at the drop of a hat, remembering things that had no bearing on anything at all. Worse yet was the fact that when he finally snapped back into reality, he seemed to know nothing of his surroundings or what was going on at all for that matter. The flashing, colorful lights made sense now. It was December. The tenth day of the month. The large tree they had cut down days ago was decorated and lit brightly, set in the middle of the expansive living room. He smiled.
“Whatcha been thinkin’ about these days?” Goku asked, sitting on the floor Indian style next to Jet. The house had full heating, and it was quite effective, but Dregan, a warrior who had joined the team recently, had taken a liking to lighting the fireplace. Dregan was an interesting warrior, who the team had found quite on accident, in a crypt. He was a soulless wanderer, a dead fighter left from the Crusades in Jerusalem. He wielded a sword and shield, but also had a skill to throw stolen spirits at opponents.
“Uhh….weird stuff, ya know? Like a time I went to the bathroom three years ago, or like, going to the store with Zelda….just…stupid stuff,” Jet answered.
“Why d’ya think you’re doin’ it? I mean, can’t ya just think of….uh…like….what you’re gonna do tomorrow, or an hour from now or something?” Goku asked.
“Tried,” Jet said, throwing his head back and sighing, then continuing to gaze at the bright fire.
“And it didn’t work?” Goku asked, raising his eyebrow slightly.
“Nope,” Jet said quietly.
“Hmm….” Goku mumbled to himself.
“I….really don’t like the time of year that much,” Jet said quietly.
“Why not?” Goku questioned.
“It’s just….I dunno really. It was cold when my parents died….real cold,” Jet answered quietly.
“Aw come on. Brighten up a bit, Scrooge,” Goku said, trying to cheer Jet up.
“Ch….humbug,” Jet said with a smirk, leaning forward in his chair, staring intently into the fire.
Gogetta and Samson walked into the living room, large smiles on their faces. They were of ten years of age both, and each resembled their fathers. Gogetta was shorter than Samson, sporting Jet’s bullcut and bright blonde hair. His eyes were a hazel color, and there was a red long sleeve shirt about his body, with the Hylian knights crest around his left arm. A heavier crimson shirt was over this, and under was a sash and pants of the same color. He wore the standard boots of saiya-jin soldiers, and when duty called, had a short sword sheathed at his side.
Samson’s hair was much wilder, untamed and black. He wore a sleeveless red shirt, with metal wristbands used for weight training. At the moment he was the more muscular of the two children, but it mattered not. They both had good hearts. Samson wore pants similar to Gogetta, but he wore buckled brown leather shoes, barely covering his ankles. Like Gogetta, he also had a sword. They had innocent looks on their faces, too much so. Jet knew they were up to something.
“Okay, what happened?” Jet asked, broken from his thoughts.
“N-nothing dad,” Gogetta fibbed, a smile on his face.
“Yeah….we didn’t break anything, really,” Samson said, face red.
“You dimwit!” Gogetta yelled, hitting Samson in the back of the head.
“Ow!” Samson yelled, hitting Gogetta.
“Okay, okay. Who broke it. And what did they break?” Jet asked.
“Uh….you know that lamp?” Gogetta began.
“The real pretty gold one?” Samson asked.
“Well uh….it was at the wrong place at the wrong time and uhh-,” Gogetta was cut off.
“I’ve heard enough,” Jet sighed.
“Don’t kill us,” Gogetta pleaded, falling to his knees dramatically.
“Clean up the mess. Neither of you are gonna die, but neither of you are gonna have dessert for a week either, and you’re not allowed in the training unit for a day,” Jet declared, his voice firm but caring.
“Yes dad,” Gogetta said, eyes on the ground.
“Heh….oh boy. I wish I had that kind of patience with Gohan and Goten back in the day,” Goku mused.
“Why didn’t you?” Jet asked.
“At the time I didn’t really have time to be much of a father…I was more of a drill instructor…Buu was running rampant and-,” Goku was cut off.
“Buu? As in….Majin Buu?” Jet asked.
“Yeah, how in the world do you know about him?” Goku asked.
“Well….thing is…I don’t. it was a widely believed conspiracy by a few people on the internet. There are chat rooms dedicated to the unknown, ya know? And awhile back, all of these people complained about not remembering what they were doing or where they were for the past week or so. And a few of them swore they had a dream…a vision, a premonition, memory, whatever you wanna call it….about this….demon. they called him Majin Buu. And in these visions, they all remembered him destroying the world. But I figured there was a more…normal…answer to it,” Jet explained.
“Wow, they must have been some of the last people alive when it happened,” Goku said thoughtfully.
“When what happened?” Jet asked.
“When Majin Buu destroyed the Earth. Everyone was revived by the Dragonballs. And no one was supposed to remember the destruction. But I guess even the Earth dragon can make a mistake now and again,” Goku said.
“Yeah…I’m glad that Buu is dead. Lord knows it would be a handful….I mean….a single being….destroying an entire planet,” Jet said in amazement.
“Yeah….it would be a sad day if Buu ever returned,” Goku said quietly.
The sky was black. There were dead trees littered on either side of him, their branches stretching out toward him like fingers on an old hand. A breeze blew by and dead leaves rustled past his feet. He stood on a white stone floor, a small set of stairs leading up into an open building in front of him. It looked like a sanctuary, with walls of white. The front wall was collapsed, making the entrance, and the roof had collapsed long ago also. Jet cautiously walked up the stairs, past the white stone rubble of the collapsed parts of the building.
Walking slowly toward him from the opposite side of the room was Kenji, his cloth torn and ripped in many places, and stained with blood. His own blood. His katana was sheathed at his side, and he held something in his hands, wrapped in cloth. Kenji and Jet met in the middle of the fallen chamber, and all was deathly silent.
“He-,” Jet began. Kenji hushed him quickly.
“Quieter,” Kenji whispered.
“What do you have?” Jet asked in regard to the item wrapped in cloth. Kenji flipped over the cloth, and there was a small baby. Its skin was hard and cracked, and it had bulbous red eyes. Blood seeped through the cracks, and the baby looked like a macabre doll, but it was quite alive, apparent by its cries of pain. Jet backed up.
“He is very sick. He will not make it through the night. I had to fight to nearly no end to give his first and last night on this world freedom,” Kenji explained. Jet fell to his knees, and was sick at Kenji’s feet. Kenji became angered at this.
“What gives you the right to judge others? What is it? Do you think that this child is so unfit to be in this world that you must be sick at his very sight? If so then you are no different from the ones I took this child from. They wanted to end its life and feed it to the hunting dogs,” Kenji said in anger and disgust.
“I didn’t mean to-,” Jet tried to stammer, standing. A large black crow landed on a dead tree near to the three.
“He is sick,” Kenji said to the bird in a dark tone.
“Yes. What news do you bring of things from the village near here?” the crow asked. The two talked for several moments, and Jet was lost in his own thoughts. What message was this giving to him? Did it even mean anything? When at last the crow left, Jet approached Kenji. The child was gone from his hands.
“What happened to-,” Jet began.
“The crow took the child. He believed his last experience on this world should be grand and spectacular. Then he will be properly put to rest,” Kenji answered.
“What does….this all mean?” Jet asked.
“Remember…you are a valiant warrior, but just because you can take lives, doesn’t mean you always have the right to choose who lives and who does not. Now awaken,” Kenji answered. Jet obeyed.
Jet sat up in his bed. It was early in the afternoon now, and soon Jet would go about his routine schedule. Or so thought. A loud sound. A flashing red light. The alarm had been sounded. For the first time in ten years. There was a threat in Hyrule. A powerful one. Jet proceeded to gather the team.