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Part II

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‘You will never be strong enough
You will never be good enough
You were never conceived in love
You will not rise above’

 

(Evanescence – Lies)

 

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   Radditz had been on the verge of dozing off but was suddenly shaken from that by Zarbon’s body jolting violently before amber eyes flew open. The Saiyan observed in a stunned silence as he witnessed the fearful and unfocused expression within them before they calmed as he realized that he wasn’t in whatever dream world he knew anymore.

  Had Radditz not had his swift reactions natural for a Saiyan warrior, he would have missed it as Zarbon seemed to calm quickly, as if what had happened was a regular occurrence. Perhaps it had something to do with the incident. Who knew?

   He didn’t really have any idea what had happened himself. As far as he knew, it had just been another routine training session then the next thing that he remembered was waking up buried underneath a pile of rubble. The part that stuck out the most in his mind was reaching his hand to what he believed to be the way out only to strike something sticky and damp. It was only when he had dug himself out that he had realized what that something had been.

   Nappa’s body. What he had stuck his hand into had been the gaping hole in his neck where his head had once been. Upon the tattered flesh of his neck there had been a mark there; an eye over a star with many points.

   Rumors had soon spread, rumors about Zarbon being the cause of this. Why else would he have fled so quickly? Soon after Frieza had sent his remaining few handfuls of soldiers out to all the corners of the galaxy to hunt the missing warrior down and kill him.

   “You’re one of Frieza’s soldiers aren’t you?” Radditz almost flinched backwards when he glanced down to see those eyes now focused on him. What surprised him more was the fact that Zarbon hadn’t moved from where Radditz had been supporting his body against him.

   The flickers of an impressed smirk flashed across Radditz’s face. Even though he wasn’t wearing any uniform that bore Frieza’s mark he had to admit, even with a culture that had such a mix of shapes and sizes, he did stand out quite a bit here.

   “So tell me why you haven’t killed me yet?”

   “What?” one eyebrow rose in curiosity. After all the running Zarbon had been doing, that was the last thing he expected him to ask. He didn’t even seem to make any move to try and get away.

   “Weren’t your orders to kill me on sight?” still he continued to push on with his question, golden coloured eyes now in full contact with Radditz’s own. His exterior and his steady voice made Zarbon appear to be the calm yet arrogant warrior that he had always been.

   But his eyes told a different story. One of the first things that Radditz picked up was confusion; pure and utter confusion. So what did that mean? No matter what, the eyes could never lie; no matter how much Frieza worked at destroying the rest of the soul.

   “That’s an odd question from someone who’s been on the run for some time,” he started to press his own question, recognizing the chance for a quick game.

   “Forget it!”

   Harshly pushing against his chest, Zarbon was able to break the hold that Radditz had on him and was on his feet. Within the next blink of an eye he was gone with only a fading blue trail indicating the direction in which he was heading.

   The trail faded almost as quickly as its owner had fled but Radditz remained unmoving from where he was sat, staring after him. In some ways he almost seemed like the old Zarbon but in other ways he was different.

   There were those eyes for a start. There were a few warriors, like the Saiyans, who could hide the emotions in their eyes but Zarbon wasn’t really one of them. He could control his emotions, this was true but there was no way of him really hiding them. The utter confusion that he had been staring at only a few moments ago made Radditz wonder whether Zarbon was actually aware of what he had done, or if he had even done it at all. What he had heard was just rumor after all and rumors had a habit of spiraling quickly out of control.

   But Radditz doubted that Zarbon had fled because of pure speculation. The way that he had suddenly started screaming and shaking violently in his sleep gave him good reason to.

   Plus there had been the way his earrings started to glow.

 

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   How long he kept on fleeing Zarbon had no idea; just like he had no clue as to how long he had been running in general. That was all that he had been dong for as far as he could remember; running. Always running. Running from whatever had happened. Running from those who were trying to kill him. Running from anyone who might offer him a kind smile. Running from the answers that the voice in his head refused to give him.

   Running. Running. Always running.

   But what happens when you trip and fall?

   There was a harsh but sharp cry from Zarbon as his focus went from staying in the air to pushing that voice away from him. Hands flying up to press over his eyes and ball his hair up in his fists prevented him from seeing the ground growing closer.

   The next cry came when he hit the ground, his body shaken and tossed along the dirt until he came to a stop lying on his stomach. Some hair that seemed course broke free from where it was tied behind his back to fall over his eyes. Somehow it seemed to cool the burning sensation that had risen in his head when the voice has spoken again. In some ways it seemed to hide him away as well.

   Somehow having half his hair fall out over his face brought a sense of security with it. Or as much security as one could feel who was wanted for a crime that they couldn’t even remember committing.

   Maybe - - maybe he could get away with just staying here. Just stay lying alone on the floor like this, hidden away by a layer of tangled green in front of his eyes. He might b able to. They wouldn’t be able to find him here would they? He could hardly see anything past his hair. If he couldn’t see them then they couldn’t see him.

   Right?

   Stupid child!

   Fists instantly clenched, feeling the sharp debris on the ground cut the palms of his hands as a small whimper slipped out into the open air. It had found him.

   But the voice seemed a little bit different. There seemed to be a hint of a different tone to it. Deeper, much deeper then what he had been hearing before. Something that he had heard before long ago.

   What makes you think that you will ever be good enough?

   It was growing deeper with every second, sounding a little more real with every word.

   You were never meant to be born!

   He knew that voice! He had heard it before, heard those exact words. But where? Who? Who had said these things to him before?

   If it weren’t forbidden, I would have killed you the second you were born. You are worthless!

   “Shut up!”

   In a flash his hands pushed down on the ground to force him onto his knees. As his head tossed upwards to throw his hair back, wild and almost crazed eyes flew open to reveal a blurry world of dark red.

   Blood?

   No. No, not blood. Just the sky. The sun setting. That was all it was.

   “I’m going crazy.”

   Although, having said that, he knew that he wasn’t going crazy. He was crazy! He was hearing voices in his head after all, that wasn’t exactly normal!

   His head lowered again in the hopes that his hair would fall back and he could go back to hiding. Maybe this time whoever was in his head wouldn’t find him.

   That was when Zarbon saw it. There was something up ahead. The strange thing was that he recognized it yet knew that he had never seen it before. At least not while he was conscious.

   What he had landed on was some sort of trail leading up to a piece of land jutting up high over some sort of rocky desert below. Some sort of high ridge.

   The end of the day was being marked by the sun slowly setting behind the landscape that Zarbon was no facing. The high jutting landscape made it disappear quickly but long rays of the fading light still remained, reaching out to cling to what little daytime there was left. The reds and oranges melting into each other grew darker and darker in the sky as the sun was slowly pulled further and further down.

   But that wasn’t what his interests lay in. What he had seen was what was standing almost on the edge of this ridge that stared out at this beautiful landscape. Something standing out of the ground just enough so that it was silhouetted against the sky to hide its detail.

   Somehow he was able to find his feet and move forward, green hair still swinging in front of his eyes to make his view hazy at best. But that didn’t stop his eyes to slowly reveal the carvings on this piece of rock with every step that he took. There was only one thing there; a star with many points and, as if it were floating on top of it, was an eye.

   Just like in his dream, there was something deeply disturbing about the way in which a stone eye can stare at you so knowingly and accusingly. Even though he half anticipated it, Zarbon knew that if that eye should blink he would jump at least a couple of foot in the air.

   There was no doubt about it, that was the mark that had been on all the dead soldiers when he had awoken, the mark that had been left upon his victims. And this was the grave that he had always been seeing when he slept every single night in his dreams. The grave that somehow held some clue to the memories that he had been hunting.

   The colours of the sky grew deeper and deeper, spilling onto the strong of the wordless grave as the light continued to shift. The deep red running slowly down the worn and old stone seemed so much like the blood that he eye had been crying in his dreams that Zarbon unknowingly took a step backwards.

   This he had seen before. He had stood upon this very spot before, he knew who’s grave that was. He knew! He just couldn’t remember, absolutely everything was out of reach.

   It was a start at least. Even though he couldn’t remember a damn thing about it, knowing whose grave it was had to be a good sign. Knowing that he had stood here had to be a good starting point. Right?

   There had been a bit of a wind, he was suddenly able to pick up on that detail. Yes, there had been a bit of a breeze on that day when he had stood in this spot, just like there was now. A few loose strands of hair were blowing in front of his eyes, making the eye that was staring at him seem slightly distorted.

   Because of that, he dismissed what he thought he saw at first but soon he began to feel a little unsure. Pushing back his hair and holding it in place, he took another step back as he took another look at the eye.

   It seemed a little more - - realistic. He had been watching it the whole time yet, without him knowing, somehow it had changed. It was staring at him, right at him. It knew something. Somehow that eye seemed to know something. What he did? Who he was?

   What? What did it know?!

   Everything. What do you think?

   “What?” he cried out with a harshness that made his throat ache. “What does it see? Tell me!”

   It sees what I do. It sees what you have done. It sees where you’re going. It sees who you are. It sees what a pathetic individual you are!

   “Why won’t you fucking tell me?” frustration came quickly, his hands shooting up and gripping his hair with enough force to nearly tear it out.

   Did I not answer your question? I told you what it sees.

   “What did I do? I’ve been here before now tell me!”

   And what do you plan on doing about it? You can’t reach me?

   “Get out! Get out of my head!” somewhere he had fallen down to his knees, now able to reach down and grip the dirt with one hand while the other stayed buried in his hair. That hand dragged down the green strands to touch his face. There was something wet running down his cheeks.

   Tears?

   Looking down, his actions froze, his body tensing as he expected to hear the voice inside his head again. But there was nothing. Just what was on his hand.

   His tears were red. Blood red!

   It didn’t feel like tears; it felt thicker, stickier, warmer.

   It WAS blood.

   With the back of his hand he wiped away a little more of whatever was seeping through his eyes. Red. It was red.

   Blood!

   He was crying blood! Just like the eye in the gravestone had done in his dream.

   He looked down only to still see red. The ground was covered in blood.

   He looked up. So was the gravestone, the gravestone was blood red too.

   Everything. Everything was covered in blood!

 

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   Night had started falling when Radditz had managed to trudge back to his space pod. Part of him wondered what the hell he was going to do. From the looks of things, this planet was too primitive to have the advanced parts that he needed to go anywhere. Until he could somehow get his communications back and get some assistance he was pretty much stuck here.

   But another part of him worried, something that he definitely wasn’t used to doing. It wasn’t Saiyan-like at all after all. Worry took your defenses down which could highly effect your battle ability. And, seeing as the Saiyans had evolved as one of the most powerful warrior races in existence, this was something that they couldn’t afford to do at all.

   It disturbed him though. Zarbon had always been known as an utter bastard. He was pretty much untouchable and knew at as the second strongest in Frieza’s entire fleet. That was if you didn’t include the Ginyu Special Forces but even with them in the picture he was still very high up in the ranks.

   What he had seen from Zarbon just a few hours ago had been the unimaginable. He had caught up with him at a moment where he was kneeling on the ground, hunched right over. Radditz could have sworn that he was talking to himself. He could have also sworn that Zarbon had been talking to someone, but the Saiyan also remembered absolutely no one else being present except the two of them.

   Zarbon was going insane perhaps?

   That might at least start explaining the incident. With the amount of power that Zarbon probably held, if he suddenly flipped then it could probably do a lot of damage if released all at once.

   Then there had been the way he had started screaming soon after he had passed out. Whatever he had seen, Radditz found himself hoping to the high heavens that he would never see what Zarbon had then. What could possibly have reduced one of Frieza’s fearsome warriors to that?

   His earrings had been glowing too. Radditz couldn’t shake the feeling that maybe this had something to do with everything as well.

   Radditz’s musings were interrupted when his sensitive hearing picked up a harsh, horrified scream.

 

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