I wake slowly. Itís still deliciously early in the morning; I can hear the birds singing, but thereís only the faintest glimmer of the dawn peeking through my window. I love this time of day, and a lazy smile drifts across my lips as I just lay there, enjoying the silence. Chichi will break the peace in only an hour, so Iíve learned to cherish these moments. Funny, how much I enjoy the times when no oneís around. Or maybe just sad. I shake my head as I push back the covers slowly, relishing the chill of the air against my sleep warmed skin.

I take in a deep breath, hoping to catch some of the lingering scent of night through my open window, but all I can smell is sweaty Saiyan. Huh, time for a shower. I rise from bed slowly, letting the bedclothes fall behind. Leaving the room dark, I rummage through Gohanís chest of drawers, looking for the little bag I keep just for these circumstances. I still canít think of this as anything but Gohanís room...it isnít really mine, Iím just borrowing it. I suppose Iíll need to get my own place, soon. If Kakarotíll let me. Itís not that he doesnít trust me, I think he genuinely just likes having me around. I donít really think of him as my brother, heís sort of a combination uncle/distant cousin. He doesnít understand me, and I donít understand him, but still, we have some good times together. But heís also an authority figure, which is where the ďuncleĒ bit comes in. So Iím confused about our relationship, what else is new with me? If I was smart, I wouldnít be here in the first place.

I find my bag with a little smirk of triumph. Itís got my shampoo, soap, washcloth, and a heavy-duty brush in it. I grab some unsoiled clothes at random, then duck out into the hall to grab a couple of clean towels. I hold them to my face briefly, letting that delicious fresh smell envelope my face. Okay, so Chichiís good for a lot of things, clean linen being one of them. Clean linen, good food, and I guess she must be one wild ride in the bedroom, the way she whoops and hollers in there. I slip back into my room with that amusing thought keeping my face lit, grabbing a duffel bag to shove everything in, then I let myself out the window, swooping out into the early morning twilight.

I donít know why I love early morning and evening so much. Maybe itís because theyíre half-and-half times, in betweens, like me. Neither one thing nor the other. But they manage it with a grace I can only envy. Iím just bewildered, sunrises and sets are glorious. I laugh to myself as I spin through the air, out among the trees. Oh, fuck it all, who cares? Iíve been spending too much time analyzing things, anyway. Itís not like me, and I resolve to just be myself today, just act without thinking, and maybe get myself into trouble. Sounds like fun.

I skim over the tops of trees, then duck below to dodge and dart around the trunks and branches, admiring the splintered light. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! When did I start thinking of this place as my home? I donít know, but I feel a startled warmth rise from my chest, contrasting with the delectable bite of the air rushing by my face, chilling my hair and naked skin. I burst out above the lake that was the scene of my first meeting with Piccolo in my new life. It really wasnít his lake, he just wanted me to shove off that night. He likes to have the upper hand, get in the last word. Petty bastard. Guess it helps him keep up his mystic image.

But I frown in dismay down at the two figures laughing and splashing. Damn, itís my nephew and Vegetaís kid. I thought Goten was staying over at Trunkís place last night? I guess they decided to get up and come here, or knowing Goten, they never went to sleep at all. Why they had to pick my lake, though, is beyond me. I decide to find somewhere else; Iím not in the mood for company just yet.

I rise above the trees, closing my eyes and spinning to pick a random direction. Keeping my eyes squeezed tightly shut I push myself as fast as I can, trusting my skill to keep me even and not crashing into any objects in my path. Itís pretty damn exhilarating, and when I finally open my eyes, I have no idea where I am. Perfect. I start scouting around for a body of water, and find a good-sized stream just itching to be a river. I follow it down stream to find it rushing into a small waterfall that drops into a clear pool. Itís ridiculously idyllic, and my goofy grin echoes my brother as I drop my bag on the rocky shore.

ďBonzai!Ē I scream mightily as I spiral into the pool, letting myself simply fall. The first bite of the water is sheer glory, and it almost makes up for the shrieking pain that warps my head as I hit the bottom really hard. Oops. I surface spluttering and rubbing my head. I canít quite stand on the bottom at the deepest part of the pool. I swim leisurely to shore to root through my bag, bringing out the soap and the rest, before swimming back out to the waterfall. The water here barely covers my waist, again, just perfect. Gods must be playing some trick on me, nothing is just perfect in my life these days. Iím learning to treasure the little things, because the big things are invariably fucked up.

But not today, not thinking today, just enjoying. I wet my hair in the waterfall, before dumping some shampoo on top of my head and proceeding to the lengthy task of working it through all of my hair. I rinse with a will, turning my face up to receive the waterfallís refreshing benediction. My skin is becoming chill in the icy water, but I donít care, in fact, it feels wonderful. Out with the soap, and a healthy all over scrub, hiking my legs out of the water to get everywhere. And finally, my tail.

Some men just have to have a good old yank in the morning to get them going. Not Saiyans, though. For us, itís our tails. Or maybe itís only me, I donít really have anyone to swap masturbation stories with anymore. I snort to myself, but refuse to be distracted. Carefully pouring out a small portion of the green shampoo, I wrap my tail around my hips to my front to allow easier access. I spare a brief mournful thought to all the Saiyans left but me, left mutilated. But Iíll be damned if Iím going to let that spoil this glorious morning, and I begin slowly massaging in the sweet, herbal smelling shampoo. Tingles of pleasure start their erratic climb through my body, little fingers of electricity awakening my nerves.

I let out a soft sigh, my tongue wetting my lips with a warmer moisture than the stream provides. I donít do my usual careful planning out of fantasies today, instead I let my mind drift as my fingers work gently through the dark pelt of my tail. Of course, Prince Vegeta pops in first. Heíll always be my ideal of beauty, so sleek and compact, like a cat. Next to him, Iím some clumsy giant. But for now itís just the image of his agonizing body, the flush of crimson that colored his cheeks and throat when he cried out in pleasure, the joy I had in cracking that haughty faÁade. A moan escapes my lips, and I move my fingers down to the very tip of my tail before running them back, ruffling the slickly wet fur.

Just thinking about Vegeta has gotten me aroused, and I wrap my tail around that, too, before continuing ministering to my longing flesh. The pleasureís becoming more intense, and I speed the pace a bit, running my fingers behind me to rub at the base of my tail. Ebony eyes slip closed as I picture my prince in my mind. But as usual, I fuck it all up, because I donít see him in his youth, when he was mine, but as he is now, in my brotherís arms. I hate it, seeing him like that, but somehow Iím more excited than ever, and I canít stop. More images flash through me, the young prince, resplendent in just his long, lavender hair, and a more alien beauty, emerald and rose...

ďPiccolo...Ē I whisper softly to the gracious air.

ďWhat? What are you doing?Ē The gravelly voice cuts through my reverie, and my eyes snap open. Oh, not him again!

ďFor Godís sake! What is it with you, me, and water? What do you want, Piccolo?Ē Iím frozen in my irritation, but Iím not going to duck into the water like some embarrassed child. He wants to spy on me, heís getting the full damn view!

ďI want you out of my pool!Ē His voice is furious, like heís caught me pissing in his drink or something. I unwind my tail, letting it wave angrily behind me. Of course, the gesture is sort of lost in the waterfall. Oh, well, free rinse. I am also sorta undercut by the fact that Iím still erect. Damn Saiyan biology mixing up sex and fighting.

ďOh, you are not going to tell me this is your pool, too! You tried that one on me already, remember? Look, Iím just taking a goddamned shower here, so if youíll excuse me...Ē I turn my back on him, my tail slicing through the water furiously.

ďRaditz, look off to your left, back through the trees about a hundred yards.Ē His voice is flat. Yep, heís ticked. But I look, and see some sort of rock face, like maybe a cave? With...with a door set into the rock. Shit.

ďThat is where I stay when I want to get away from the Lookout. And you are in my pool.Ē

I turn around, still a little annoyed, though some of it is now directed at myself. I didnít thoroughly check out the area...what if someone not so friendly had lived nearby? ďLook, I was just taking a shower, Piccolo, nothing big.Ē

ďWhat you were doing was painfully obvious! Ple-...Mas- ...doing....THAT,Ē he says, spluttering, and gesturing at my bobbing erection, ďAnd saying my name, like some....well, I donít know! Like something!Ē Oh, shit. But Iím not going to feel embarrassed. Not today. I walk out of the pool, doing my best Vegeta imitation and sneering at the Namek.

ďLook, us non-asexual people do things like that. And why the hell would you care whoís name Iím whispering, or hollering for that matter?Ē I turn my back to him, and lean over to grab a towel from my bag. Iím surprised to hear a shocked gasp from behind me, but not so surprised when I hear:

ďCOVER YOURSELF! I have no wish to see your little peep show, Saiyan!Ē Piccolo is way more angry than Iíve ever seen him, even when Iím trying my best to get him going. Iím going to have to remember this. Feeling smugly perverse, I wrap the towel around my shoulders and turn around.

ďNo oneís asking you to look,Ē I snort at him, and begin drying my front briskly. ďYou may want to stand back,Ē I add, and then proceed to shake out my hair before heís moved a muscle. Heh, got him dead on. He stands there gaping at me, too shocked to speak, just making choked noises. Wow, heís even more of a prude than I suspected. Too bad heís not wearing that stupid turban or the superhero cape, I only managed to wet his gi. And little crystalline droplets dangle tantalizingly from the ends of his antennae. I wonder why heís not attacking me, though? Probably has some sort of weird honor thing about attacking naked people. His loss.

Finally he gains back some control of his vocal chords. ďWhat is this all about, Raditz?Ē he asks, his voice now dangerously low. Heís thinking instead of just reacting, which means my fun is about to be ruined. I guess I better cut him a break. I shrug wide shoulders, as I try to actually analyze my behavior. He owes me, for making me break my promise to myself this early.

ďOh, I dunno,Ē I sigh, wringing out my hair, and rubbing it with the other towel to give it at least the semblance of being damp instead of dripping wet. I fish for my shorts in the bag, this time not leaving my back to Piccolo. ďPart of it is I just like to piss you off. But I really didnít know this was your pool, I was just doing my usual...uh...thing that I do when I wash in the mornings.Ē I examine the pair of cut-off jeans critically, then pull them on. The come to just above the knee. All my shorts are cut offs, itís really hard to find clothes in my size, and pants were all they had in the thrift store.

ďI was just kinda letting my mind wander. I have no idea how to explain masturbation to you, I think my ability was sucked out at the whole being in love thing. But what you think about when youíre doing it isnít always under your control, you know?Ē I pull out my brush and sit down on a rock that is just beginning to be warmed by the rising sun. I admire the swirling mist dancing over the surface of the water before continuing.

ďIíve always had a thing for strong people, like most Saiyans. Guys, in my case. And I guess I think of you as a man, not a woman, and not even...well, whatever you are. But it wasnít my conscious choice. Hell, I was thinking about Vegeta at first, and you know what a lost cause that is. So donít take it too personally.Ē

My hair is deciding to be stubborn today and I yank painfully on one of the many knots trying to detangle it. I donít look at Piccolo, and he doesnít say anything. I guess heís doing some analyzing of his own. I glance up at him curiously, but his face is empty of meaning. Piccolo is the master of the blank face, only 18 is better at it, from what Iíve seen. I offer something that I still have trouble with. ďSorry.Ē

He just stares back at me, and I turn back to my hair. I donít feel like squirming under his gaze today, so I wonít. I let my mind drift pleasantly as I work, ignoring my unintentional companion. So itís quite a surprise when I feel his clawed hand at my shoulder, then the soft touch of his forearm sliding by my cheek as he reaches over to pluck the brush from my hand. ďYouíre making a mess of it,Ē he says in his usual growl. And then Iím completely freaked, because heís grabbing a small handful of my hair and gently teasing the tangles from it.

I have a sudden terrible thought...is this going to turn out like one of those crazy stories that Gohan had stashed in his room where one guy catches the other masturbating, and is so turned on by it that he jumps the second guyís bones? ďUh, Piccolo?Ē I ask cautiously, ďWhat are you doing?Ē

His hands tighten in my hair and I let out a startled yelp. He works the brush through a particularly nasty tangle before answering, ďIím brushing your hair, idiot.Ē I want desperately to look over my shoulder, see the expression on his face, but Iím afraid to. This is just too strange. Piccolo is not a tender or caring kind of guy, this is way out of character for him. I decide to just sit still, and try not let my mind run away with this.

Actually, once he gets the knots out, it feels pretty nice. Thereís something very primal in having someone else brush your hair; a warm, safe, tingly kind of feeling that is unfamiliar to me. I find myself letting out happy little ďmmĒ noises as he draws the brush from the crown of my head down the entire length of my mane. The sun is starting to heat the surface of my skin, and lazy droplets of water trail ticklishly down my back into the waistband of my shorts. I let my shoulders relax, my hands fall open where they rest on my thighs. I almost lean back comfortably into Piccolo, but stop myself just in time.

Finally he hands the brush back to me, and I dare to glance back into his face. The amused little smirk I see there makes me blink. Then I realize...ĒYou were fucking with me, werenít you?Ē I ask, somewhat surprised with myself for the pang of disappointment that taunts me. Do I miss companionship so much?

ďI donít know, Raditz, was I?Ē he asks archly and I want to stamp my feet like a child in frustration.

ďOh, fine, whatever! I donít want to play your games today, you sadistic Namek.Ē I stand, gathering my things angrily. Heís probably snickering to himself, glad heís finally found a way to get me back for all those cracks about Gohan. I pull on a baggy black t-shirt, and swing my duffel bag, burdened now with wet towels, over my shoulder. ďIím going to go get breakfast. I wonít come and use your pool again.Ē Iím snarling, furious I canít get a better hold of my own reactions. Ah, this is why I consistently analyze everything I do...it keeps me from making quite so much of a fool of myself. Or maybe that's just wishful thinking, too.

ďYouíre welcome to it any time you like,Ē offers Piccolo. I turn, gaping at him, but heís already gone, and I see the door to his cave opening and a green and indigo flash slipping inside.

ďYOU ALWAYS HAVE TO HAVE THE LAST WORD, DONíT YOU, YOU SNEAKY SON OF A BITCH!Ē

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