Screams mixed with smoke filling the blood red sky as destruction rained down all around.
Tall buildings crumbled slowly down to the ground, crushing anyone whom couldn’t get out in time into a messy pulp.
Pieces of rubble were thrown in all directions to hit anyone who tried to run and reduce them to bleeding corpses in the street.
The vast number of soldiers who had appeared from the stars to invade their world would murder those who somehow managed to
escape this fate.
The large black cloud from the smouldering city rose quickly and began to take shape. It formed
the horns of a devil and the claws of a bloodthirsty monster. The laughter that came from the cloud demon was twisted and
almost completely psychopathic as its horrendous head was thrown back. Its black eyes burned with the most treacherous fires
of hell, burning and ripping apart flesh into small strips.
"Hey Zarb. Time. To. Wake. Up. Now!"
Salza jumped back as an arm suddenly shot out to swipe at him before Zarbon sat up and stretched
his aching limbs, pushing back strands of hair with one hand.
"Dammit!" he groaned to himself, blinking open tired eyes. "What in the hell happened?"
"You fell asleep at one of the research computers again," keeping his distance this time Salza
rolled his eyes, knowing all too well that his older brother wasn’t really much of an early morning person. "You’ve
been flat out since then, you’re meant to be on duty in a few minutes. You really should get some more rest Zarb, you
"I know, it’s just not an option with the way I’ve gotta work," standing up he straightened
himself up as much as he needed to. "Perhaps you’d like to try it sometime."
"How about not?" Salza practically grimaced at the thought of having to directly serve Frieza
and quickly looked to change the subject. "It’s too shame you fell asleep, you missed all the fuss last night."
"Last night?" Zarbon blinked. "What happened last night?"
"You know those three Saiyans who were sent to that dark planet to check it out. Their communication
systems suddenly broke and we’ve had no contact with them since remember?"
"Yeah, I remember."
"Well, apparently two of them were killed by something out there but the one who survived arrived
back pretty late last night," the smaller soldier told him. "You should have seen all the commotion. He was in really bad
shape, some sort of sickness. They’ve been running tests on him all night but I don’t think they know what’s
wrong with him yet."
"Sick? Where? Which room?" all of a sudden Zarbon seemed to wake up at the news. "Do you know
which one of the Saiyans it was?"
"Medical wing D I think," Salza answered him. "But I don’t know which one it was, I couldn’t
see properly through all the commotion. Why?"
"Never mind," Zarbon went to leave but suddenly closed his eyes and hissed painfully through
his teeth. Before he could stop himself he gripped one of his arms to show where whatever was hurting him was coming from.
"Zarb?" Salza’s eyebrows narrowed a little as he saw the sudden display of pain, even
if it was done by accident. Someone with a ranking as high as Zarbon’s was not meant to feel pain, it hurt the chances
of survival in this place. Stepping closer and reaching out he was able to push Zarbon’s hand a little down his arm
enough to see the top of a deep fresh scar that probably ran all the way down to his elbow at least.
He knew about those. He knew that Zarbon’s arms and legs were covered in these long ugly
scars, that was why he kept them covered.
"He hurt you again didn’t he?" letting his hand drop back down to his side he asked a
question that he already knew the answer to.
"You know not to worry about it, it’s nothing," hiding his markings Zarbon closed his
eyes with his head bowed a little as he left the room, wanting to avoid any further questioning.
It was what he had been afraid of alright, it was Vegeta there. It looked like just another routine injury as the Saiyan sat
in the rejuvenation tank with a warm and healing fluid all around him, a mask connected to a specialised tank allowing him
to breathe. Indeed he did carry some fresh injuries from whatever he had been fighting but they weren’t serious enough
to need this sort of treatment.
Amber eyes flicked back over to where the readings of Vegeta’s condition were being recorded
but once again they displayed bad news. Vegeta’s condition was fast closing into critical. His heart rate was going
down slowly and so was his entire life force. A large screen just above displayed all the tests that had been carried out
to try and find out what was wrong with him but they all displayed the same result next to them.
But it was the text at the bottom in particular that had caught Zarbon’s attention. Throughout
his time working for Frieza he had learnt how to just leave most of his body feeling numb, feeling pain hurt your chances.
But it was the two words at the bottom of the screen that made his blood run completely cold.
But why? It wouldn’t be just because the doctors couldn’t be bothered. Vegeta may
not be well liked but most of the doctors around here kept the same principals as they would have done in the time before.
There was no such thing as good guys or bad guys, just patients who needed help.
This had Frieza written all over it but he still wondered why. With Vegeta’s growing strength
he was a valuable warrior even without Radditz and Nappa to back him up. If he had been the one who had ordered the termination
of the tests Zarbon wanted to know why.
"Finally! What the hell are you doing here?" he didn’t need to turn around, the rough
raspy voice behind him was easily recognisable as Dedoria. "You were supposed to be on duty half an hour ago Zarbon, Frieza
isn’t happy with you."
"Do you know why the tests on Vegeta have been stopped?" Zarbon didn’t turn to face him
but kept his eyes trained on the screen, reading the words ‘TESTS TERMINATED’ over and over again.
"What? You want to know why? I’m surprised that you’d be concerned about the little
monkey at all," his fat partner seemed a little taken aback by the sudden question, yet at the same time his voice seemed
to mock him, like he was the last one who knew what was going on. There was a brief moment of silence before he went on, "Whatever
has effected him can’t be identified and Lord Frieza does not want all his resources used up on a Saiyan. Instead he’s
ordered that he is to be taken back to the planet that he was on and let him die when it is destroyed."
"Seems a bit of a waste," Zarbon’s musings spilled out of his mouth before he had a chance
to stop himself.
"He was a valuable warrior, it’s true," he could practically feel Dedoria’s repulsive
grin boring into his back. "But he’s also disposable. This way it gets rid of the last of the Saiyans, if you ask me
that Vegeta was getting too cocky for his own good anyway."
All he could feel was pain, pain burning him inside. The burning pain ripped through his chest to numb all senses in his body.
It was hard to breathe and he knew that he couldn’t move much, it hurt when he tried.
He didn’t know what was wrong; the last thing he remembered was passing out in his space
pod then nothing but blackness.
But what had happened before then?
The battle! The battle, how could he forget! Originally he and his two Saiyan partners had been
sent to a dark planet that had caught Frieza’s interest some time ago. Soldiers of a lower class then himself had been
sent before but none had come back. Eventually the tyrant had grown tired and had sent the Saiyans to see what was wrong.
He had accepted the mission with confidence, thinking that nothing could go wrong in such tiresome routine that seemed below
But he had been wrong; there had been a reason as to why those soldiers had never come back
and a very good one at that.
When he, Radditz and Nappa had arrived there had been something lurking in the shadows to greet
them and it wasn’t happy about its new visitors. It hadn’t made itself known right away, only when the three Saiyans
had decided to call it a night and make a small camp to spend the night in before reporting back to base. If there was an
opportunity to avoid returning back to Frieza then Vegeta was all for it.
That was when it had happened, right when they were on the verge of falling asleep. At first
Vegeta had thought that it had been Nappa snoring but hot reeking breath on his face had told him otherwise.
All of a sudden it had been there, a gaping mouth right in front of him, razor yellow teeth
dripping with thick saliva only inches away from his face. Its breath came hot and heavy onto him, so strong that Vegeta almost
passed out there and then. But his Saiyan reflexes had saved him and he had been able to escape his grizzly fate.
Radditz, however, had not been so lucky. The taller Saiyan had instantly rushed forward to get
Vegeta out of the way of whatever creature was attacking them but the prince had been able to move out of the way just as
he reached him and the gaping jaws had closed around him instead.
There had been a yelp interrupted by the horrific crunch of bones and then there had been a
shower of blood followed by some stray limbs falling to the ground. The Saiyan prince had witnessed this kind of carnage before
but he had still found it hard to keep down the content of his churning stomach.
However, even though it had disposed of Radditz so quickly, the dark creature had gone down
quickly once Vegeta had been able to dive underneath it and blast it through the heart whilst the monster appeared to be choking
on something for a brief second, what it was Vegeta didn’t want to think about. It had gone down with a huge crash,
organs and body fluid spilling out to coat him and the ground.
There had been no sign of Nappa, what exactly had happened to him Vegeta wasn’t sure of.
Most likely he had been the first to perish whilst Vegeta had still been drowsy but the prince was certain that he was also
gone. Spotting half an arm and a hand that was his impaled through one of the creature’s terrible claws told him that.
He couldn’t remember exactly what the creature looked like; he hadn’t really stopped
to look properly. Instead he had climbed into his space pod to report the attack. The last thing he remembered was feeling
ill and being violently sick before he had passed out.
How long he had been out he didn’t remember but as a little of his consciousness came
back to him he instantly recognised the smell. The vile stench of darkness and death was all around him and Vegeta was sure
that he wasn’t back at the base. The prince was weak; he couldn’t even open his eyes but was still able to recognise
where he had last smelt that terrible stench.
On the dark planet where two of the three last remaining Saiyans had lost their lives in such
a dishonourable way. But why was he back here, he had gone back to the base hadn’t he?
Why was he back?
Was he going to die?