Rhuda morphed into her Time Academy room with a heavy chest. She thought of Trunks and the kindness he displayed, despite having lived through hell itself. For a girl like her it was impossible to imagine what life had been like for him.
"Close the door."
Zamasu said. He was once again at his desk, sipping a cup of tea and didn't even glance up as she returned.
From what she could tell, Zamasu was hard at work writing. He set down his tea cup and carefully, slowly copied kanji from one page to the next in smooth transition. It was kind of like art to her. "...You...have beautiful handwriting," she told him.
Her comment was met with a sharp silver glare.
"I-I just...ano...I uhm, got something for you today."
Zamasu got up from his writing desk and placed his hands behind his back. "An offering to a God? It had better be fitting."
Rhuda went into her [MENU] and selected [Gifts] and chose the earplugs. They appeared in her hand. "This. So you don't have to listen to me...snore."
Zamasus' lips twisted back in disgust. "You expect a God to wear...ear plugs?"
He strode over and pushed Rhuda to the wall. "Unthinkable! You dare disrespect me!"
"I-I'm sorry, Sir..."
Zamasu wrapped his hand around her throat. "If I hadn't been exiled to this damn place, I'd--" he grit his teeth, "...count yourself lucky, mortal."
He dropped his hold and Rhuda fell to her knees holding her throbbing neck. She looked up at him, trying to think of ways to keep him from killing her.
He was a 'God'.
Who was supposed to be unlockable. There had to be some way...something she could do.
Rhuda stood up. "Lord Zamasu. I...don't want to die."
"Hn. Imagine that, a mortal who doesn't want to be mortal."
"Is there anything I can do to...to...please you?"
His gray eyes widened, then narrowed. "You really want to please me? Why do you ask me such things?"
"Because I want to...make you happy, Lord Zamasu." Rhuda bowed.
A silence grew. Rhuda dared a glance up and saw that Zamasus' face was pink. He shut his eyes. "Then break me out of this prison."
Break him out? Rhuda almost gasped out loud. Instead, she shook her head. "I don't have that kind of power..."
"Wait! Maybe...there's a way." Rhuda gulped down a horde of nerves that threatened to come up her throat. She could only think of one thing that might sway his mind, get him on her side as an ally. "....The Super Dragon Balls."
That got his attention.
"You mention those wish orbs. Do you know the history of those, mortal?" Zamasu asked her. She shook her head. "No. Not at all. But I do know that they can grant any wish. And...correct me if I'm wrong, but couldn't they also free you from this place?"
He nodded. "They could. But getting my hands on them so far has been....impossible. Even with my Kai abilities I can't go beyond the borders of Conton. Grandpriest saw to that."
"Grandpriest...? Is he...an important person?" Rhuda asked.
Zamasu clenched his hand tightly and replied, "He'd like to think so. But he's just a another...tool. A useless one if you ask me."
"Why...were you sentenced here, if you don't mind me asking?"
Darkness fell over Zamasus' face, contorting with hatred that was almost pungent. He almost spat out, "You're a patroller and don't know this? Do they teach you nothing?"
"S-Sorry....ano, I'm new here. And...I was just wondering."
"Hn. I have no obligation to answer that." He sat back down at this desk.
"T-Then...w-what are you writing, Lord Zamasu?"
"That wretched Kai of Time has me spending my free time copying the old texts. She thinks it would be 'reforming' for me to review." He said with disdain.
Rhuda was growing more and more curious about Lord Zamasu. She wondered why he hated mortals so much, but didn't dare ask any further questions. "I'm...going to sleep now. Uhm, I...if I snore, I deeply apologize."
[System: Sleep? Yes / No ]
She awoke freshened and brimming with the desire to know more about the mysterious Kai Zamasu. Rhuda greeted him, glad to see he hadn't murdered her in while she slept, and headed off to ask Shallot all of her burning questions.
He looked up from laying on his back on the grass atop a mountain peak beside the Bamboo Forest. Rhuda leaned over his face, smiling, "I went on a date with Trunks!"
"Eh? Is something the matter?"
"Not really. Just getting blown off for a character in a game, well, kinda sucks." He jut his lower lip out and rolled away from her. His brown tail smacked angrily against the grass.
"Sure, sure. It's cool."
But it didn't sound cool to Rhuda. She touched his shoulder and gently said, "....I'm free to do a mission, if you'd like..."
"Why bother? Nothing is important here, anyway." He shook off her hand. "...Go have fun with Mr. Perfect."
Rhudas' chest squeezed uncomfortably tight. She didn't like Shallot being angry with her. It made her almost sick to her stomach. She bowed her head to the grass and said, "P-Please forgive me, Shallot...I--I didn't mean to upset you. P-Please..."
[Chisato heard the door slam. She hurriedly pulled out the roast from the oven, burning her hand. In her shock the food hit the floor and spattered grease everywhere. She cried out as hot droplets stung her legs and face. "T-The food!"
Her father sat down his briefcase by the door and came to investigate the noise. When he saw the food lying there in a mess, his mouth drew back, "Idiot! You can't even make dinner!"
"I-I'm sorry, father--"
"Sorry isn't going to fix dinner!" He punched the wall, making Chisato cower in fear. She stared at the floor and the messed up roast as her hand, face and legs burned.]
"Man, quit begging already. It's not a big deal! I'm just sulking, alright? Let a man sulk."
Shallot rolled over and glared at her. "Rhuda. Chill alr-" He stopped talking when he saw she was biting her lip to hold back from crying. He sat up and pulled her to his chest, "...Hey."
"S-Shallot don't be mad, please, I'll do whatever you want! Don't hate me..." Rhuda cried.
"H-Hey...why're you crying for? It's not that deep." He said.
She put her hand to her chest and gave him a expression that ripped at his heart. As her eyes dribbled tears she shakily replied, "...For some reason, I can't...stand the thought of you being mad at me. I'd...rather die."
"Rhuda....you...argh, come here."
Shallot held her, feeling like he was a terrible person for being upset. Clearly Rhuda had issues that went farther than what he knew about. He smoothed his hand down her face, swiping away tears. "...I'm...not mad. The truth is...I was just jealous." He confessed with a sigh.
"Jealous? But why, Shallot?"
"Stupid! It's because I like you!"
"S-Shallot l-likes me? T-That can't be true!"
Rhuda reared away as her cheeks warmed. She looked at him, really looked, and saw that within his chocolate eyes there was sincerity, vulnerability, and warmth.
He likes me? She thought.
"Believe it or not, the great Shallot likes you." He smirked and flicked her forehead. "So...don't go making me jealous, or I'll eat you up. K?"
To prove his point he pinned her to the grass, smirking. They looked at one another, and in that moment, Rhuda imagined Trunks' face and turned from Shallot. "...I...like Trunks."
"Tch. I know that, dummy. I'm not saying you can't like him. I'm sayin' that...I'm real. He isn't."
"To me, Trunks is very real," Rhuda argued.
"Man, do you hear yourself? This is a game, Rhuda! Or did you forget that you died and got stuck here?" Shallot leaned, rubbing his nose to her cheek. "...I don't need a happy ending. You don't have to do anything to get me. Just...being here is enough."
Rhuda squirmed when he kissed her cheek, neck, sucking her tan skin. "S-Shallot---I don't want to be a cheater..."
"This isn't cheating. We're just..." he claimed her mouth, "...doing what's only natural."
She knew Shallot was right. Only, thinking of Trunks' hurt face made Rhuda push Shallot back.
He leaned back and finally got off of her.
Rhuda looked at her trembling hand, to his blue armored back. She heard, "You just...make me want you even more."
Before she could say anything else he jumped from the mountain and took off flying.
Rhuda couldn't face Trunks.
She sat on the roof top of Orange Star high, lost in a daze. So many things had occurred in such a small amount of time that the girl wasn't able to cope.
Exactly how long she sat there was uncertain, but long enough the narrator sped up time to save from writing a boring paragraph.
Goku waved from the sky and landed beside her. "Heh. Caught you slacking off!" He joked.
"Hm? What's up? Why the gloomy cloud?" He asked, poking the dark cloud above her head. It burst and left Rhuda soaking wet. She shook water from her hair and said, "Just thinking."
"...What would you do if someone liked you?" Rhuda asked.
"I mean...liked liked, not just...as a friend."
Goku waved his arms and said, "Now hang on a minute! We're talking hypothetical, right?"
He sighed. "Okay. Well, there's nothing wrong with 'liking' someone, right? But...it's up to you what you do with it. We're all in control of what we choose, after all. Did that help?"
Rhuda nodded. "Mhm. But...what if you were scared to tell them no....because they'd hate you?"
Goku saw how the tiny saiyan withdrew into herself, just like before. He sat down beside her and put his arm around her shoulder. "Hey. What gives?"
"....There's someone who likes me. But...I don't really see them that way."
Her tail drooped.
Goku gazed up at the sky and thought long and hard about how to answer. He kept his eyes on the sky as he answered, "Tell them. If they're really someone you care about---which looks to me like that's true--then you have to be honest. True friendship won't die out from something like that."
"...I...don't know if I can tell them that. I'm scared..."
Rhuda clenched her fist tightly, seeing her past life instead of reality. Goku put his hand over hers and said, "Say it to me then. Maybe it will help you get the nerve."
She rose her face. With pink cheeks and trembling hands she said, "I...want to be friends....I don't want our friendship to change. I--I know that you like me, but there's someone I really like, and I can't...ahh...ano...I'm sorry...this feels so strange..."
Goku snickered and ruffled her head. "Hey you did good, okay? If it were me, I'd be happy with that."
Rhuda smiled. "T-Thank you, Goku."
Zamasu watched Goku fly off from the Academy and looked up from tending his rose bushes to see Rhuda sitting on the side, staring off.
It was different from her normally obnoxious behavior and made the Kai pause. He recalled her words last night about the Super Dragon Balls, wondering why she would tempt him. Perhaps she had been sent by the Kaioshin to see if he would take up his old habits.
"You aren't fooling me." He mumbled.
Rhuda hopped down from the Academy and saw him. Zamasu caught her eyes and she smiled. "Lord Zamasu. So this is where you go during the day."
"Hn." It wasn't as if he had any other place to be.
"Those flowers are so beautiful." She said, eyeing his collection of different flowers with enthusiasm.
"...They're the only gleam of happiness to be found here." He answered calmly.
"It must be difficult to...be stuck here." Rhuda replied.
"Again you mock me."
"I-I'm not mocking! It's just...I understand...that feeling."
She turned away and smiled over her shoulder, "Maybe one day we can become like those flowers and bloom."
After she left, Zamasu looked once more at the flowers he tended, seeing them in a different way. "...To be like a flower."
Rhuda had enough time to think. She walked up the Time Nest steps and entered the Portal, intent to see Trunks.
Upon entering, she saw not only him, but the hairy Goku and Vegeta, and her brother Broly all talking to one another. Carefully she walked over to them. "Ano...am I interrupting something?" She asked.
Trunks turned, gave her a gentle smile and shook his head. "Not at all. We were just discussing what to do about Fu. He's been...quiet."
Vegeta scowled. "Too quiet if you ask me. That bastard is up to something."
Goku and Trunks nodded in agreement. "Yeah." Goku said, "Gotta agree with you on that. It's not like him to be so...careful."
"Whatever he's planning must be something big." Trunks replied.
Rhuda walked over to Trunks and added, "Maybe he's testing you all. To see if you can catch on to him."
"What do you mean?" Trunks asked.
"Well...if you have a big scheme in place, but are scared to go through with it, wouldn't it be better to do small things and see if the enemy notices?" Rhuda questioned.
"I see. You may be right. Which means...if we can't figure out what he's up to, it will be like a leak in a pipe and only get worse." Trunks put his hand under his chin, "So far all we know is that he's working together with past villains, bringing them to his side, and that he believes you're the vessel to the Ancient One. Who ever that is."
The SKOT walked out of her home and smiled at them. "Hello, everyone!"
After greeting she began, "Okay, so I've been doing some research. And I found out that there used to be an Ancient One long ago. And, you two--" she pointed to Broly and Rhuda, "--are the only ones left from that legend."
Vegeta stepped forward. "Explain."
"Well...here goes." SKOT took a deep breath and began to tell them the legend: "A long time ago, before I was Kai of Time, there used to be two Dragon Gods. One was supposedly born from evil intentions, and they were called the Ancient One. The other was Zalama, born of the good from mortals."
She continued, "The story goes that the Ancient One fell in love with the first saiyan Oozaru. And, well, to be put simply, they had children together. But their children were wild and evil...so the Kais' put a stop to them, telling Beerus the Destroyer to get rid of the Ancient One. He did, but didn't kill off of their children. And after many years the power went dormant, only showing itself every one thousand years."
Chronoa pointed to Broly, "You're the dominant gene from that line of saiyans. And you--" she pointed to Rhuda, "--are the one carrying the gene. In other words, your DNA is different from Brolys. While he possesses the DNA to show the gene, you possess the necessary DNA to make another Ancient One."
She blew out a big breath. "...So, does everyone get it?"
Trunks nodded. "I think so. To summarize what you said, Rhuda is a carrier for the Ancient One, which means she can make more of her kind, well, assuming she procreates. And Broly is what would happen if the Ancient One were to be born."
SKOT nodded. "Pretty much!"
Rhuda gulped. It was a lot to take in. "...So, how does that fit in to why Fu wants me?"
SKOT shrugged. "Not sure. From what I can tell, though, he needs your DNA to make another Ancient One. I really don't know why he would want to do that, unless..."
Trunks jumped. "...Unless he plans to attack us! Think about it. If Fu can manipulate the DNA from Rhuda, then he could make a whole army of Ancient Ones!"
Vegeta scoffed. "You're forgetting something." He jerked his thumb to Broly, "If all Fu needed was a Legendary Super saiyan, why doesn't he just use Brolys DNA?"
Goku nodded. "Yeah. That part doesn't add up."
SKOT began to pace back and forth on the grass. "Maybe...it's possible..."
"What is it, SKOT?" Trunks probed.
"Well, I don't know how right I could be, but if Fu needs Rhudas' DNA in particular, then maybe it's not so simple as we think. There has to be another reason he would call her a vessel."
Trunks and the others all put their thinking hats on. As for Rhuda, she began to sweat, thinking of all the bad possibilities that could arise in her future.
Finally Trunks smacked his palm. "I think I've got it! He needs Rhuda because he's not just aiming to make another Ancient One, but bringing back the original!"