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Since You've Been Gone

One Piece
Dragonheart287 - Fanfiction

November 5th this year was a bitterly cold night but as always the people had wrapped themselves up in their winter clothes and piled out to see the annual fireworks display. Goku made his way across the field with his wife ChiChi and oldest son Gohan in tow, Goten on the other hand was perched on his Father's shoulders and wailing with delight at the fire up ahead. Gohan frowned at the over excited child, fireworks displays had kinda lost their edge and no longer held so much wonder as they had done in his childhood. Rubbing his hands together he looked ahead to where the fire was, Vegeta was waiting for them with his family he seemed just as impressed as Gohan, he was eyeing his son Trunks who was running around in a circle excitedly stopping every so often to jump up and down. As the Son family reached them Goku placed Goten down on the floor he ran straight for Trunks, the two children put their hands together and jumped up and down in anticipation of the approaching fireworks. Gohan let out a sigh and looked down bored and altogether unimpressed by the event, he could no longer see the appeal of coming outside to freeze half to death while watching a load of pretty lights in the sky. As he was thinking that a voice broke through his thought,

"What's up with you Gohan? You don't look too happy"

"Nothing," Gohan sighed as he turned to face his father, trying to put on a fake smile but failing miserably as it fell. "I’ve just been thinking a lot."

"Oh, what about?" Goku asked, the sadness about his oldest son worrying him a little. "Is there anything at school worrying you? You know that you can always talk to me about it don’t you?"

"Yeah I do," he nodded a little; feeling slightly relieved by his father’s words. Knowing that he was now there again was certainly a great relief now as he didn’t feel comfortable talking with his mother about some things and he doubted that Piccolo would show any interest either. "If you don’t mind I’m just going to go for a walk, I’ll be back by the time it’s over."

"That’s okay," Goku gave an understanding nod, excusing him. "Take your time, we’ll see you back at home if you’re gone for a little longer." Then he added more silently with a quick wink, "if your mother asks, I’ll tell her you suddenly remembered some homework or something."

"Thanks dad," his small smile was genuine this time as he slipped out of the light that the huge bonfire gave and walked away silently into the night, the darkness soon hiding him.

Goku watched him leave, feeling the fires warm glow on one side of his face. The lost look that he had seen in Gohan’s eyes had shaken some worry in him and he knew that it was nothing to do with school or anything like that. He had been forced to sit through enough of ChiChi's soap operas and chick flicks and had even seen it himself to know the look of heartache. Gohan was missing someone but it was nothing that he could help him with, as much as he wished that he could. For once he would have to just stand on the sidelines and let Gohan resolve this for himself.

"Hey dad, where’s Gohan going?" His youngest son tugging at his baggy trousers to gain his attention brought Goku to reality. "He’s going to miss the fireworks."

"Gohan just has some things to do," reaching down, Goku fondly ruffled Goten's hair to push it out of place after ChiChi had spent what seemed ages to try and get it to look reasonably presentable. "Don’t you worry about it, he’ll be back. Hey, do you want to sit on my shoulder to watch the fireworks?"

"Yeah!" forgetting all about Gohan for a moment, Goten’s eyes lit up as brightly as the stars overhead and reached up excitedly as Goku knelt down for him.

"What about you Trunks? I’ve got two shoulders you know," Goku smiled as he turned to the other youngster, knowing that Vegeta wouldn’t be one to make such an offer to his son. In fact he was a little amazed that Bulma had managed to drag him down here at all.

"Really?" like Goten, Trunks’ eyes lit up at the offer and he glanced to his mother to receive an approving nod before being lifted with Goten up onto the large mans shoulders.

Goku couldn’t help but smile at the excited laughter that came from the two youngsters as he held then on his shoulders and glanced over at Vegeta who simply rolled his eyes at them before closing them again and leaning back against the capsule vehicle that he had come in.

Laughing to himself now, Goku turned back to the bonfire but found himself wondering whether Gohan would be all right.

Here I go again I promised myself I wouldn’t think of you today

It’s been seven years and counting

You’ve moved on

I still feel exactly the same

It’s just that everywhere I go all the buildings know your name

Like photographs and memories of love

Steel and granite reminders

The city calls your name and I can’t move on

From where Gohan sat on a tree stump in a clearing of the forest that surrounded his mountain home he heard the explosion of the first firework going off and distantly recognised the cheers from the two young demi-Saiyans that followed but paid them no heed. In front of him was the river that ran through the woods with the reflection of the full moon in the sky reflected on its surface.

It was the perfect romantic scene. The only noise apart from the fireworks were the song of the crickets that came every night all around him. The water was clear and reflected the moon and the stars as clearly as if it was a mirror made of the finest glass. The stump that he sat on was set apart from the other trees that circled the clearing to leave a gap above him with a perfect view of the clusters of the stars in the dark cloudless sky.

It was perfect.

Or at least it would be if he didn’t feel so alone. Lately there had been only one thing on his mind that wouldn’t be shifted no matter how much he tried. He still did well at school, the work was enough to keep his mind occupied for a while before it all cleared and his thoughts slipped back to the man who he couldn’t stop thinking about.

He couldn’t go anywhere without thinking of him. When he went to Master Roshi’s island he could still pick out exactly where he had sat in anticipation waiting for a coming battle. He could still tell where he stood on the Lookout in waiting for Vegeta to complete his training in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber so that he could have his turn to build his strength further. He still flew over the land where he had first met him and could still pick out the exact boulder that he had sat on when waiting for Goku’s arrival. He could still pick out the window of the room that he had slept in when he had been staying at Capsule Corp.

He couldn’t really go anywhere without thinking of him really. Wherever he went there was something there to remind him of what he couldn’t have, almost as if the buildings were mocking him sometimes. Here he was, one of the most powerful beings in the universe, the person who had defeated Cell when he was only a child. And yet he couldn’t have what he desired more then anything in the world.

It almost seemed as if he were haunting him, always at the back of his mind. Always there like a shadow.

But he wasn’t really there, and that was what made Gohan so distressed.

Without really realising it, he released a choked sob from his throat as he looked up at the clear night sky; the sound of the fireworks now completely blocked from his mind. The moon reflected on the single tear that fell from his eye as he whispered the name of the one who he missed so much. The one who he had been thinking of ever since he had left seven years ago.


Ever since you’ve been gone

The lights go out the same

The only difference is

You call another name

To your love

To your lover now

To your love

Your lover after me.

From what he remembered it had just started out as some childish school-aged crush that lasted about a week or so and then moved onto the next but he had never really noticed it. Back then it had been admiration towards the warrior from the future world who had come to warn them of a coming danger and save his fathers life. Trunks had become a bit of a role model for Gohan during that time, he had just loved being around him to witness everything that he had said and done during his time here.

But then he had left and Gohan felt empty inside. Of course he put it down to his fathers death and the more he thought about it the more he realised that it was probably mostly this. However there had been moments when he had been growing up when his mind had gone back to Trunks and the feeling just seemed to grow worse.

That had really been when he had first realised that maybe it was more then just plain admiring him but still he hadn’t wanted to admit to himself about what it really was although maybe he did know it at the very back of his mind. He had been about fourteen and taking a study break during the afternoon. Gohan had been lying on his bed with the spring sunlight pouring through the window onto the floor to make shadows stretch up the wall. The cooling breeze made his curtains flutter a little inside and felt cool against his head, which was beginning to throb a little seeing as ChiChi had made him start on a whole new level of his Algebra studies.

His mind was drifting; he was half-asleep when he saw him, an image in his head smiling at him. The whites of his teeth were just a little bit visible and his blue eyes shone like a pair of new gems. He could literally feel his soft hair as he watched the breeze blow it over his forehead a little, his skin looking perfect and smooth. In his mind he just couldn’t find the words to describe how great Trunks looked as the image made his body and heart ache. All of a sudden he had wanted him so badly, to feel his skin and hair between his fingers and taste his lips with his.

He could almost taste him now. So close, so- -

A loud cluttering of the curtains knocking some books to the floor had torn him away from his daydream and the image of Trunks in front of him vanished into nothingness. He had sat up quickly blushing; embarrassed that he could feel that way about another male.

Since then he had found it slowly getting worse. He knew that hormones practically growing out of control were all part of development into adulthood but sometimes his urges became almost unbearable. There had been many occasions where his desire had grown so strong and so intense that he had relieved himself a little, picturing Trunks again in his mind. At least he knew how to work the washer. Admitting his sexuality to himself had been hard enough; he didn’t really want his mother questioning him yet.

Despite his depressed thought he smiled a little but it dropped just as quickly as it appeared and he let out a sad sigh. Maybe this crush would go away but then again if it had only grown stronger over the years then why would it suddenly disappear?

He loved Trunks, he knew that, he needed him. But there was just no way that he could have him.

In fact just about the only thing that he was grateful for in this whole situation was that he felt absolutely nothing for the Trunks of his timeline. It was obvious that although they were the same people there were some very noticeable differences. The Trunks that he loved was a survivor of a world that had known only horrific war since he had been born whilst the one that played with Goten was the rich grandson of the famous Capsule Corporation.

As far as he saw it, it was a good thing that he had absolutely no crush on the child. Even if he had saved the universe once when he had been a child he still doubted how he’d fare against an extremely pissed off Saiyan prince should he find out.

Am I all alone in the universe?

There’s no love on these streets

I have given mine away to a world that didn’t want it anyway

So this is my new freedom

It’s funny

I don’t remember being chained

But nothing seems to make sense anymore

Without you I’m always twenty minutes late

A couple of miles away there was a flicker in the undergrowth before the Time Machine appeared where only a cluster of fallen leaves had sat before. The only ones that noticed were a couple of startles forest animals which was really why he had deliberately chosen this spot; because there was no human habitation nearby. He knew how quickly things were shunned if they were not understood.

With a soft grunt, Trunks jumped down from the control panel to land squarely on his feet on the forest floor. Reaching out behind him he flipped open part of the now worn casing to push a single small button that was hidden there. With a soft bang the Time Machine was capsulated ready for Trunks to catch it and tuck it safely away in the front pocket of his jacket. He probably wouldn’t need it for a while now.

Glancing round he smiled almost sadly as he admired the peaceful landscape of the night. He could see past the trees to where the fields lay spread out for as far as the eye could see and beyond with an old tree growing tall here and there. Beyond them the mountains loomed out of the land up towards the sky. Now they were only just visible in the night sky but Trunks’ sharp sense of sight could easily pick them out as he stood admiring them.

There was a sudden bang and, out of reflex, he spun on his heal and crouched a little ready to defend himself. Instead of danger what he saw were flashes of colour exploding in the sky to slowly melt away into the stars. Relaxing he smiled as he watched a couple more of all different sizes and colours. Some of them made different patterns and some just shot straight up into the air with a sharp piercing whistle without exploding but the ones that opened up quickly like a flower in a great burst of colour were undoubtedly his favourites. They made him feel like a child again.

He knew what they were he had just never really seen them before. The only thing close to fireworks that he had ever seen were the explosions that signalled the place of the Androids next horrible rampage but his mother had told him all about them when he had been younger.

A soft smile spread across Trunks’ face as his thoughts turned to his mother. She was partly the reason why he had come here, only she had seen that it was the best thing. At first Trunks hadn’t wanted to leave when she had told him that he should stay in the past world. They were all each other had after all but then he saw something that he hadn’t before, although he always wondered why not. The loss of her friends and family that she had known all her life hadn’t had the effect that he had been afraid of. It hadn’t broken her and made her weak and afraid, instead it had strengthened her somehow. When he saw that Trunks knew that she would be fine so had climbed into the Time Machine for what would probably be the last time.

The main reason that he had come back had been because of Gohan. During his time in the past world almost every night he had dreamed about the man who had trained him when he had been younger. He would dream about the night that he came to him before the day that he was killed. Trunks could recall him seeming sad and worried, almost as if he knew of his fate that awaited him. He had told Trunks that there was a lot of evil in the world now and that they could twist things like love to make it seem ugly and wrong. That was why Gohan had been there, to make his first experience of love a happy one so that he could remember it as being good, not bad.

Trunks could remember feeling a little afraid but at the same time he trusted Gohan, he knew that he never would dream of hurting him. And he didn’t - - not intentionally at least. Even though it was only a dream he was always fooled into believing that at was all real. He could still feel the touch of Gohan’s fingertips lingering on his skin and the way he would kiss his neck and mouth.

He had fallen asleep in Gohan’s arms with him stroking his hair, whispering in his ear that things wouldn’t always be as bad as they were, that someday they would change. Then the dream would switch and he would see Gohan being killed by the Androids. He would watch as they beat him without even giving him the chance to try and get back up. Trunks would always try to get to him but his feet would never move and he would be forced to just stand there and watch Gohan’s murder.

Then he would always wake up crying.

"Gohan," he sighed out his name, wiping away a tear that had been threatening to spill from his eye. He mentally slapped himself, those days were over and everything was okay again. At least they would be as soon as he found Gohan.

Ever since you’ve been gone

The lights go out the same

The only difference is

You call another name

To your love

To your lover now

To your love

The lover after me

He started by heading towards where he had seen the fireworks go off, thinking that it was probably the best way to start. He knew that Goku’s home was around here somewhere so maybe Gohan would be over there. Trunks ran through the undergrowth of the forest instead of flying as he knew that people would sense his presence that way. He wanted it to be a surprise instead.

As he quickly got nearer and nearer he could hear the excited cries and cheers of two children as another firework was launched, this one whistling up into the air then vanishing for a second before exploding was a white light that was almost blinding.

"Hey, mind out with those sparklers boys," he smiled when he recognised Goku’s voice. "I’d like to go home with both my eyes if you don’t mind."

Trunks could practically feel his eyes shining as he smiled. Gohan had to be there. Before going out into the field he did a quick scan of the people there to see just who would know him if he suddenly came out. There was definitely Goku, it was hard to miss that enormous power and just a little below his there was his father, Vegeta. Trunks couldn’t help but laugh a little. He didn’t know how Goku had come back but he was sure that Vegeta was unimpressed that he still hadn’t been able to surpass him.

There were two others that seemed a little strange to him, both children and undoubtedly the pair who had been waving the sparklers in Goku’s face. One of them felt like his so he assumed it to be the child version of himself in this time although he had no clue as to who the other one was although the spiritual energy did seem to resemble Goku’s. He guessed that Bulma and ChiChi were also nearby but his heart seemed to fall as he couldn’t recognise Gohan’s energy anywhere.

Suddenly he was afraid, had something happened to Gohan?

No, when he checked again he recognised Gohan’s energy somewhere else away from the group watching the fireworks display. He wasn’t far away and as far as he could tell was all alone.

Trunks smiled with relief, that was perfect.

And time goes by so slowly

The nights are cold and lonely

I shouldn’t be holding on

But I’m the only one for you

Gohan sighed again to himself, feeling completely miserable inside. As much as he had tried to distract himself the thought of Trunks was still too strongly on his mind tonight and it seemed like he had tried everything to divert it. He had even tried what he had done when Piccolo had made him train in the wilderness when he had been a boy, drawing out maths and science formulas in the dirt. But that, like everything else, had failed to work.

The demi-Saiyan scowled at his work and rubbed it out using his foot. All of a sudden he felt stupid and angry with himself.

Even if Trunks were here why would he want him anyway? He had just been a boy when he had first known him so why on earth would he fancy him anyway? Plus his future version had been Trunks’ teacher, surely he had too much respect for that.

Trunks was a good-looking guy and Gohan was positive that he could have anyone that he wanted, male or female. And with a choice like that why would he be the one? Yet the more he tried to convince himself that Trunks would have no interest in him, the more his frustration grew. All of a sudden he wished that someone like Maijin Buu or Cell were back so that he could take out all his frustration on them and beat them to a bloody pulp. Sure, it wouldn’t get him anywhere near to what he wanted but maybe it would make him feel better.

"Get over yourself!" in an attempt to try and relieve himself of some of his anger Gohan struck himself heavily across the cheek. His head snapped to the side with the force that he hit himself with and a harsh red mark in the shape of a hand print was left that would probably bruise over.

Letting the icy breeze that was picking up sting his wound Gohan drew his knees up to his chest and hugged them tightly. The wind also blew out a few of the tears that had started to gather in his eyes again and he watched as they fell onto his sleeve to sit there and sparkle slightly. They would stay on his sleeve for a moment almost as if they were silently singing to him, what exactly they would be saying he had no idea about, before they fell towards the ground.

"You idiot!" he scolded himself again, burying his face in his knees. "There’s no way that Trunks would ever want you!"

"What makes you so sure?"

Here I go again

I promised myself I wouldn’t think of you today

But I’m standing at your doorway

I’m calling out your name because I can’t move on

As much as he wished he hadn’t, at that moment Gohan froze as he felt his heart skip a beat or two. He knew that voice but was unable to believe it right now. Maybe he was hearing things, there was no way that he would have come back - -


Raising his head up Gohan quickly wiped away the tears sliding down his face with the back of his hand, sniffing a little, before standing and practically forced himself to turn around and face the person behind him. His breath hitched in his throat with a sharp gasp as he recognised Trunks standing only a metre or so away from him. The first thing he noticed was how the moon reflected in his clear blue eyes, making them shimmer which practically made him feel weak at the knees. But there was worry suddenly set in those eyes as Trunks got a good look at Gohan’s face.

"Gohan," he said softly, taking a step forward and reaching out to him. "You’ve been crying, what happened?"

"Huh? Oh, nothing," suddenly feeling embarrassed Gohan wiped his face with his hand again, this time digging his nails into his skin a little to punish himself for looking a complete fool in front of the love of his life.

"No, no it’s not," coming closer still Trunks put his hand on Gohan’s shoulder, feeling a horrible tension there that caused him to grow even more concerned. "Gohan, I heard you just now. Were you crying because you thought that I didn’t like you?"

"It was - - a little more then that - -" Gohan looked down, unable to bear looking at him. He could feel his face getting hotter and hotter as Trunks leaned in a little more, placing another hand on his shoulder.

"There’s a good reason that I came back Gohan, but it’s not because I like you."

Those last six words hit Gohan like a sledgehammer; an invisible chilled wave hit his body and washed over him to drench the demi-Saiyan in shock. Swallowing hard, he bit his lip as he tried hard to force back the threatening tears that were gathering again at the back of his eyes. He suddenly felt more foolish then ever and damned himself for ever thinking that Trunks could ever feel the same way as him.

Then, although it was only a whisper, Gohan heard Trunks add on to what he had just stated.

"It’s because I love you."

Gohan’s mouth hung open but nothing came out, he couldn’t think of anything to say. All the pain, fear and embarrassment was suddenly gone as he felt a hand come under his chin to gently tilt his head up. Then he felt Trunks kiss him gently, pulling him against his body to hold him close.

The tension in his shoulders, and his whole body suddenly dropped as he felt like crying again but this time with happiness. He wrapped one of his arms around Trunks’ neck with the other going up into his hair to stroke his fingers through it, fiddling with a few soft strands. Gohan sighed deeply before responding and kissing him back.

How long they stayed that way neither of them knew but neither of them really cared at that moment. At that moment they were happy to stay that way in each other’s arms. However, time always has to move on.

Breaking the kiss Trunks moved his head back just a little so that he could get a good look at Gohan’s eyes, the dark orbs looking intense and focused as they looked right back at him.

"You really came back," Gohan reached out and stroked Trunks’ cheek almost as if he were afraid that he wasn’t really real. "I thought - - I mean I was afraid that - -"

"I’d found someone else?" Trunks smiled as he finished the sentence for him. "No, I could never do that. All I’ve ever thought about was you."

Gohan said nothing but pulled Trunks back up against him, pushing his tongue into the future boy’s mouth in a hungry kiss.

The sudden bang from a firework bigger then all the others that night would have made anyone else look up but not Gohan and Trunks as they locked their mouths together, their tongues dancing together with a fiery passion.

Ever since you’ve been gone

The lights go out the same

The only difference is

You call another name

To your love

To your lover now

To your love

The lover after me

"OK boys," Goku set the two excited children down on the ground, slightly relieved that the night was almost over as it meant no more sparklers waving dangerously close to his eyes. "Why don’t you go see Bulma about a hot dog or something?"

As the two boys ran off in search of food Goku turned to where Vegeta had stayed all evening, now sat upon the car bonnet instead of leaning against it. His eyes were not closed either but were glaring straight in the direction that Gohan had gone in earlier that night.

Sighing lightly Goku approached the Saiyan prince, fiddling with a few strands of slightly singed hair. Although Vegeta didn’t move at all Goku knew that he was aware of his presence there.

"You sensed him too huh?" Goku questioned him, his eyebrows lowering a little but his trademark smile still dominating his facial features.

"It’s hard not to, he’s improved quite a bit since seven years ago," Goku was a little surprised when Vegeta answered him although he still refused to look at him. "And it feels like he’s found your son as well."

"Leave them be," the taller Saiyan rested a hand upon Vegeta’s shoulder as a signal for him to stay away from the new lovers. "It’s their choice to be together, not ours."

"Why would I want to interfere?" Vegeta’s eyes snapped to his. "I would have thought that even you could have seen where Trunks’ interests lay Kakarott. Or are you really that much of a fool?"

"You what?" Goku scratched the back of his head, a little taken aback by what he had just heard. "You - - were aware of Trunks’ - - err - - preferences?"

"I would have thought that it was obvious," getting up, Vegeta shrugged Goku’s hand off his shoulder. "He liked the pink shirt didn’t he?"