Chapter ten

The Saiyan prince moaned deliciously as Jeice took him into his eagerly sucking mouth, writhing in unfettered ecstasy as the older man milked him thoroughly, savoring every drop. The red-skinned mercenary had never before cared if he pleased his lovers. They were only present to serve his needs after all. But the prince was different, it was exhilarating to make him come---so empowering. And his own jarring climax, red form spilling into olive, was the most electric sensation he had ever experienced, ionizing every cell in his body with the magnitude of the charge. It was what he had searched for in all his previous unsatisfactory encounters---total fulfillment, no continued search for the completion beyond his reach.

Vegeta was everything he had hoped and imagined and desired him to be. Now that he had had the tantalizing dark-haired youth, he would never let him go. The prince was his---his to enjoy over and over and over again. He wanted to taste those bee-stung lips another time, swollen by all the kisses they had lustfully shared. And he leaned down to partake of their sweetness once more.

Beep…beep…beep….beep. Jeice slowly opened his eyes to see himself reflected in the mirror above his bed. Bitter disappointment swept over him. He wasn’t alone, the outline of his latest playmate clearly visible through the downy comforter covering them both. Sighing heavily, he turned to the other, drawing the white linens away from his face. Lifeless black eyes stared unseeing in his direction, the pallid complexion of another cheap imitation painted gravely over features frozen in fearful surprise. It was the nameless street waif he had encountered on his latest prowl.

~I’ll get in one last quick fuck to start my day.~ Jeice spread the boy’s legs wide and entered him without prelude, pumping forcefully in and out of the cold body. The feeling was better now than when the boy had been living, a complete and utter domination that brought him some measure of satiation. What did it matter if the boy was cooler now? Even alive his temperature had been frigid compared to the prince’s. Finishing quickly, he rolled off the stiffening teen and onto his feet. It was time to take the garbage out.

Vegeta’s thoughts were in turmoil. ~What have I done?~ Closing his eyes in revulsion, shuddering at the implications, he thought, ~I…I kissed Zarbon. What’s happening to me?~

When their lips had touched, for just that brief moment, the prince had wanted to scream at Zarbon---punish him for daring to take such a liberty with him yet again. But it had been he who had kissed the Megalian. The older fighter had not raised his head from the floor. No. It was Vegeta who had brought his head down to the other’s, lightly brushing his own pink lips to the blue of Zarbon’s, parted as they were as in unconscious invitation.

~Hormones. It’s just my hormones running amuck---amplified by the rush of battle.~ Shaking his head angrily, ~It can’t be anything more.~

But then why had it not sickened him when Zarbon had kissed him previously. He had been furious, bitter at the public humiliation….but the kiss itself…well….the sensation had been rather pleasant. Nothing like the kiss he was forced to give Jeice. That one had been noxious, the red man’s passion tainting the contact with his foul, consuming desire.

Hurrying to his quarters, the Saiyan prince found his way immediately to the bathroom. Even if the physical sensation had been pleasant, his thoughts were anything but. So now he felt a wave of sudden, debilitating nausea overcome him as he questioned his sexuality. He had been perverted, thrown off the course he would have undoubtedly taken if he’d been allowed to grow up among his own people. If he was on Vegetesei still, he would never have considered kissing a male. It was this horrid ship and all its depraved peoples that were subverting his natural instincts.

Making his way to the vanity he leaned over the marbled sink, dry-heaving as he had not eaten that morning, no breakfast to revisit. He collapsed to the tile, back against the wall and head on his drawn-up knees. If it didn’t go contrary to everything he had been taught by his father and reinforced in his orphaned childhood by Nappa, he would have cried, giving release to this awful feeling of panic that was threatening to swallow his last measure of control.

Leto, having followed Vegeta from his nest in the bedroom, wormed his way onto the prince’s lap, seeking to snuggle in the Saiyan’s warmth, offering some comfort to the distraught youth. And that was how Zarbon found them both. The prince was holding the viveret to him tightly as he might a lifeline.

The Megalian kneeled on the floor next to the prince, reaching out with his hand to touch the shadowed flame of hair. The Saiyan lurched away from the touch---embarassment, shame, anger, uncertainty, so many unwelcome emotions warring within him. “Don’t touch me, Zarbon!” he managed to choke out, scooting further from the other man’s reach.

Zarbon let his hand fall to his side, bewilderment on his features. “I don’t understand, Vegeta. You know that we will be intimate eventually. Isn’t it better that we both want one another?”

“Better?” The small Saiyan shouted disbelievingly. “How can it be better for me to be perverted…a fucking, loathsome freak?”

The green-haired elder looked sadly at his younger companion for a few moments before commenting. “I realize that Saiyans are extremely xenophobic, but what choice do you really have anymore. It’s not as if there are many options for finding a lover among your own species.” A sharp pang of jealousy hit the Megalian at the possibility of his prince with either of the other two remaining Saiyans. “And I know there is no religious prohibition in your culture in regards to same-sex pairings.” As he spoke he smiled fondly down at Leto who lept from the prince to Zarbon as the Megalian settled himself on the floor cross-legged, facing Vegeta.

Well it seemed confusion was to be the state Vegeta would always be reduced to when dealing with the blue-skinned man, as the Saiyan fumbled in his efforts to fortify his arguments contrary to just such a coupling. “I…,” he hesitated before snarling, “I should only need the release of battle. I am a Saiyan warrior---the Saiyan prince. Nothing else should matter.” Bracing himself he continued, “Prohibited or not, it’s unnatural. Same-sex relationships may have occurred but they were looked upon with disfavor and distaste, especially in the upper classes where bloodlines were everything. It was made clear to me from the start that I needed to reproduce---Vegetesei needed heirs to the throne.”

Golden eyes piercing his obsidian ones in an unmistakable expression of profound sympathy, Zarbon replied gently, “Vegetesei no longer exists. There is no longer a throne that needs heirs. You are free to love as you wish.” So saying he reached out to the prince a second time, so achingly lovely in his vulnerability, smoothing his palm down the silky-soft cheek of the Saiyan, wanting to kiss him so badly he hurt.

“I am free to do nothing. My life is not my own, nor is anyone else’s in that bastard ice lord’s employ,” Vegeta disagreed as he tore his face from the caressing touch of the other. “And this sort of love is wrong…unnatural. It would be a offense to my father, a failure as his son,” the teen stated with certainty, face contorted in disgust.

Smiling cynically Zarbon shrugged, “I’m the last person to judge what is natural. My people were enslaved and our DNA bio-engineered to our captor race’s specifications.” He hesitated, considering carefully, before adding, “You’ve been unduly influenced by Nappa. I think your father would have understood, princelet.”

The mention of the late king coming from the mouth of this alien sent Vegeta to his feet and into a fit of rage. “How dare you presume to say what my father might feel! You know nothing about him!”

Ignoring the waves of fury radiating from the boy and looking sharply at Vegeta, rising to his feet as well, towering over the shorter prince, Zarbon asked, “What do you remember about a Saiyan named Dreklar?”

Thrown by what he perceived as a total change in subject, Vegeta stuttered, “Na…Nappa’s nephew? Wha..What does he have to do with anything?”

Now Zarbon was thrown off-track. “Dreklar was Nappa’s nephew?” His eyes widened and his mouth moved soundlessly before he recovered his voice enough to say, “That handsome young man… with the full head of hair… was Nappa’s nephew?” He was stunned.

Rolling his eyes, Vegeta chided, “Nappa’s bald by choice not chance. He’s always said that it made women flock to him, rubbing his skull for luck or some such nonsense. Besides, Dreklar was his nephew through marriage, not blood.” Glaring he reminded, “You still haven’t told me what Dreklar has to do with our conversation.”

“Well, you haven’t told me what you remember about him yet,” Zarbon reminded the irked prince in return.

Frowning in concentration, Vegeta recalled, “He was tested at a very high level of power as a baby, but never showed any inclination to put that power to use. He didn’t like fighting very much, a really big disappointment to his family.” Bringing old memories to mind he added, “He had a real talent with all manner of animals and worked as sort of a gamekeeper and animal physician to the royal house.” The prince then demanded of Zarbon, “Why did you bring him up? What does he have to do with our discussion?”

Not flinching under the unwaverimg scrutiny in those glittering ebon eyes, Zarbon proclaimed mildly, “He was involved with your father.”

It was as if a bucket of ice had been dumped over him, chilling him to the bone. His father had been involved with another man? No. It wasn’t true.

“You’re lying, Zarbon. You’d say anything to have your way. The connection between my mother and father was real…everyone said so,” he cried out, refusing to accept the possibility that his widowed father had found another mate, a male one at that. But even as he denied the possibility with his words, he saw flashes of images from his childhood on Vegetesei---a smile that the king had previously reserved only for the company of his son, widening to encompass Dreklar as well and the increasing presence of the good-looking young man on family outings with the two royal males.

“…no idea as to the truth of your parent’s connection. All I do know is that your father and Dreklar had a relationship,” he heard Zarbon saying as his attention was brought back to the present.

Choosing to put his own growing doubts out of his mind, Vegeta said, “I don’t want to talk about this anymore. Just leave me alone.” He waited till the other man left the room, looking back at the prince, eyes tawny in their upset, blue lips pursed in frustration. The young Saiyan shut the door and peeled out of his soiled bodysuit, stepping into the shower to recover some much-needed warmth from the heat of the spray as well as to cleanse himself of the blood and sweat from the morning’s spar. The steam was soothing and he lost himself in its comfort, thoughts and emotions dutifully ignored.

Zarbon sat listlessly in his favorite armchair, a book he had long desired to finish open on his lap. He closed the novel abruptly when he realized he had been on the same page the last hour. Everything he had found so much enjoyment in doing prior to the Saiyan prince’s invasion into his life and home no longer held the strong appeal for him that it once did.

Vegeta had left their quarters after his shower, dressed for the first time in something other than spandex. He had not spoken to his roommate before he left and gave no indication on when he would bother to return.

Whereas, always in the past, the Megalian had relished the quiet of his apartment, he now found the silence unbearably oppressive. He needed to get out of here. He needed to see Vegeta.

Vegeta, meanwhile, was playing some cards with Nappa and Raditz at the club. It was amateur night and all the idiots who thought they could sing or play an instrument were taking turns on stage showing the hard-drinking audience just how lacking in accomplishment they actually were. Jeice was there with Burter and Guldo, all of them soused. The red-skinned soldier was unambiguous in his leering appraisal of the prince, causing Raditz to growl threateningly under his breath, muscles tensed to spring to the defense of Vegeta’s honor, if necessary. Nappa was oblivious to the undercurrents, only making one reference to the presence of the Ginyu Farce, as he called them, before turning his attention to the cards, placing a wager.

The three inebriated Ginyu members made their way on stage, encouraged by the majority of the rowdy crowd to showcase their talents, singing off-key and dancing ridiculously in all their posturing lunacy. The Saiyan’s could only mutter in disgust at the ludicrous antics of the trio who after an excruciating fifteen minutes of caterwauling intensity departed the stage just as Dodoria entered the club, accompanied by--- to the surprise of everyone present-- Zarbon.

Even if he would not have garnered attention with this unexpected showing in a common area, he would have warranted it with his look. He was a vision to behold, burnished green of his hair unbound from its usual plait, a thin band of gold metal across his forehead. He was clothed in a simple white poet’s blouse, sleeves elegantly billowed, and a knee-length green skort, long, muscular blue legs tapering to graceful feet ensconced in brown sandals. A collective intake of air from the patrons greeted his entrance.

Vegeta had looked up with the others to see Zarbon’s arrival, affected just as strongly as the others by the Megalian’s beauty but resentful of the fact. He made it a point to ignore the blue man as he focused his eyes on the cards he was holding.

Jeice, noting his rival’s manifestation in what he considered his territory, gave challenge to the Megalian by way of a dare. “Zarbon. Since you’ve finally decided to grace us lower life-forms with your company after all these years, perhaps you’d care to entertain us with a song.” He tossed his mane of white hair in punctuation to his request, urging others to encourage the Megalian to the stage, hoping to witness the man in discomfort.

All eyes were on Zarbon, everyone waiting in eager anticipation for the blue-skinned man to respond. Looking directly at Vegeta, he agreed wordlessly and went to the stage. Shuffling through the assortment of instruments available for the use of the amateur artists, he selected a stringed one with a long neck and oblong body. Seating himself on a stool center stage he began his song, strumming effortlessly in accompaniment to his voice, a ballad of sorrow and love in a language forgotten, the words not understood but the feelings readily divined by his skillful inflection. He sang only for the Saiyan prince, gold eyes meeting ebon across the divide of the room, but the entire audience was mesmerized by the mellifluous notes, only two of the others seeing the spell that was woven between singer and sung to.

Jeice was incensed. Not only could the green-haired man perform but there was something happening between the prince and the Megalian, a connection. Somehow, Zarbon was making inroads with the Saiyan, actually getting the haughty youth to care for him. ~Unbelievable~

Raditz also could feel the chemistry between the two, unable to stop a low growl as he realized his prince was being entranced.

The low growl was enough to shake Vegeta from his enchantment and he looked purposely away from Zarbon as the song ended. As Zarbon graciously accepted the applause from the wildly enthusiastic audience, Vegeta made his way to the bathroom. On his way back, he was cornered by the still-intoxicated Jeice.

“Oh, my sweet prince. I’ve thought of nothing else but you since that kiss,” he murmured as he put his nose to Vegeta’s hair. “We would be so good together. Our bodies fit….we are truly compatible…. You should be mine.” The last sentence came out as little more than a groan.

Almost gagging against the stale stench of alcohol issuing from Jeice’s mouth and pores, Vegeta inured himself to the smell, brushing lightly against him before whispering in turn, “I have thought of the kiss often myself.” Rather breathlessly, “I imagine us together as well but…..” Putting unspoken explanation in his next words, he simply smiled regretfully as he said, “You understand Zarbon… is….well….” And he left without finishing, the Ginyu member fuming in unfulfilled lust and frustration behind him. All the hatred he had bottled for the Megalian loosed by his pie-eyed condition.

The Saiyan prince went back to his table and announced his appetite for dinner. “Let’s go to the mess. I’m feeling particularly ravenous at the moment.”

As the trio of warriors were leaving the club, a scuffle broke out behind them. Turning to the disturbance, Nappa exclaimed, “ Shit! Jeice is fighting Zarbon. I wonder what set them off.”

Without glancing back, shrugging disinterestedly, Vegeta said mockingly, “They’re probably fighting over the latest advance in hair products or skincare.”

Nappa snickered, “Figures.”

Raditz smiled in smug satisfaction. Perhaps his prince wasn’t as spellbound as he had feared.

Vegeta ruthlessly pushed down any feelings of guilt or anything else for that matter. Maybe fate would finally smile upon him and he would be rid of both men.

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