Trunks was sure that he looked like an idiot for the rest of the day as he couldn't stop smiling. Kira informed him in her usual blunt way around two-thirty (during the time they were supposed to be working on an independent assignment) that his face was never going to return to its usual shape as the muscles would be too stretched out from overuse. He was tempted to flip her off, but since he didn't want to make his new friend mad he stuck his tongue out at her instead. Kira had no qualms about showing him her finger, however, and the gesture caused him to grin.
"Gimme your comm number," she said suddenly.
"What?" he asked once his mind had processed her demand.
"Gimme your comm number. I'm going to call you later tonight so that I can interrogate you about your date."
He could only imagine what his father would have to say if he happened to be the one to answer the communicator. "How about I call you instead?" That way he could be absolutely sure that Vegeta wasn't listening in to their conversation. He didn't know how his father would react to finding out that his son had a crush on another boy but he bet that he wouldn't just accept it.
"You don't want your dad to find out," Kira said knowingly. "Okay, I'll write it down for you. Do you want to do a sound only call, then?"
"That'll be great," he said, relieved. He could just use the headset to prevent his father from hearing Kira's side of the conversation if he did happen to eavesdrop.
"Trunks, Kira," the teacher, Miss Jaines, warned sternly.
"Sorry," the both apologized in unison... for the third time that day.
After school, Trunks met up with Goten and Chisa by their classroom. Goten explained to him that he had to wait for his older brother to show up, which would take a little while since the high school didn't let out until three-thirty. Chisa, as per the plan she and Goten had come up with earlier, went off to the swing set and gave the two boys time alone.
"I've never seen you around before," Goten said once his friend was far enough away.
"I just moved here."
"Oh. Where do you live? I live on Peachtree St."
"I don't live in Aros, I live in Hedin. Before that I lived on Amida with my mother."
"You live in Hedin? You're going to take the train to school from there every single day?" Goten's face looked like he didn't really believe the older boy. He could understand attending school in another sector if he would be driven, but hardly anyone had vehicles save for the government. There were so many regulations and fees attached to owning and operating one that usually only the rich bothered.
"Not the train. I'm going to walk. My papa and I live on the Aros side of Hedin. It only takes me half an hour." Trunks could plainly see Goten's admiration of him and it made him feel pretty good. He would definitely not ever tell him that the only reason he was attending a school in another sector was because there wasn't one in Hedin that would take him.
They chatted for the entire time it took Gohan to walk to S.S. No. 17 and not once did Chisa return. When Goten's big brother showed up, he stopped a moment in surprise and took in the lavender-haired boy talking to his younger brother. He saw how close they were sitting, practically in each other's laps. Gohan frowned at the latest development in his family and hoped that Goten was only going through a phase.
"Niichan!" Goten called. He stood up quickly, but not because he was embarrassed by his closeness to Trunks. Instead, it was from excitement. "This is my new friend, Trunks. Trunks, this is my oniichan, Gohan."
"Hey," Trunks said in what he hoped was a casual manner. He had realized that Gohan didn't like him being so close to his brother. If he did something to upset Gohan, the odds that he would be able to see Goten again were going to become slim.
"Your accent tells me that you're not from around here and Goten's never mentioned you before. Where are you from?"
If it were possible, Gohan began to frown even more. It was common knowledge that only rich people could afford to have permanent residences on Amida. Why in the world would Trunks' family leave paradise for Solaris?
Trunks winced at the teen's expression and quickly explained further. "I moved in with my father."
Before Gohan could question him further, Goten complained loudly about being bored. Gohan dropped the subject in favor of going home but Trunks had a feeling he would be bringing it up again later.
Goku gave his two weeks notice and his supervisor was truly sorry to see him go. Goku was a hard worker who did his job with few complaints. Someone else sad to see him leave was Feril. Since the day they had lunch together (and he had discovered that Goku was, technically, single again), he had been hanging around him, his interest painfully clear. Things were quickly getting to the point that he was going to have to tell Feril in no uncertain terms that he wasn't interested. The man was obviously not getting the non-verbal hints he constantly dropped.
They went out to lunch again. Feril claimed it was a small "farewell lunch" but Goku knew that it was a last-ditch effort to woo him. Since he felt that their paths would seldom cross again after he changed jobs (if ever), Goku was willing to put up with any untoward advances. What pushed him over the edge was when Feril followed him into the restroom after their meal was over.
He stepped up to a urinal and his co-worker chose one of the low ones designed for the smaller races that was right beside him just so that he could glance surreptitiously at his penis while he urinated. Goku tried to ignore him, but it was pretty much a lost cause when Feril starting growing hard and his hand began to massage his member. He couldn't help but the notice that the skin on his penis was the same pale green shade as the skin on the palms of his hands.
"Excuse me, but why are you watching me pee?" Goku tried to ask nonchalantly but he couldn't quite keep the irritation from showing in his voice. He shook off the last few drops and tucked himself back into his pants. He waited until he was washing his hands to confront his co-worker.
"I couldn't help myself," Feril admitted. "You're really handsome."
"Thank you, but that doesn't give you the right to peep at me while I use the bathroom."
Feril sighed. "I know you aren't interested in me but I don't know why. Is it something that I can change?"
"Well, the fact that you're coming on so strong isn't really attractive, but it's mainly because I'm not physically attracted to you. I also just got out of a relationship and I'm not looking for another one so soon."
"I guess I can understand that. When I broke up with my first boyfriend I was out of it for months. As for not being physically attracted to me... There's nothing I can really do about that." As he did look like he was going to accept the way things were, Goku relaxed a little. "Can we still be friends? You can never have too many of those."
"Sure. As long as you promise to remember that we'll never be anything more."
Feril held up his hand, the thumb folded inward toward his palm. "I will. Ghazi honor."
Now that the pressure was off, Goku was feeling a lot better. He had a feeling that Feril wouldn't be chasing after him again. It came from the same place the feeling that warned him not to marry Chi Chi had. Since it had been right before he figured that he should really start listening to it.
"Are you doing anything after work?" Goku asked.
"No, not today. Why?"
"Why don't you come to my place for dinner? If we're really going to be friends you should probably meet my sons." He had already seen pictures of them but they paled in comparison to the real thing in Goku's opinion.
Looking nervous, Feril asked, "Are you sure?"
"Yep, positive. You'll love Goten right away. Gohan takes a little getting used to sometimes. You can be their 'ojiichan'. Their uncle," Goku translated. Instead of making Feril feel accepted it merely served to make him look even more nervous.
"What if they don't like me?" His whiskers twitched spasmodically. "What if I make a fool out of myself?"
"How can you be so sure?!"
"Feril!" Goku gripped him by the shoulders and shook him a little to calm his rising hysteria. "Meeting my kids won't be like meeting the head of the gov, okay? They're just like you and me, only younger."
Feril nodded rapidly and tried to ignore the way Goku's hands felt on his body even through his shirt. His cock couldn't ignore it, though. "It's just that I've never really been around kids before. I'm an only child, you see, and I don't live close to any of my cousins that have kids. They look up to you, don't they? That's a lot of pressure."
"It will be fine." Goku said this in a way that meant the subject was closed. "Wash your hands so we can get back to work. Mr. Lawson brought in another one of his classics earlier today, remember? You know how much you love working on them."
"Yeah..." he answered in a dreamy tone. "They don't make cars like that anymore."
Knowing that he was successfully distracted, Goku smiled and led the way out of the restroom.
Trunks tried desperately to enjoy the video game he was playing with Goten but could feel Gohan watching him. The very first thing he'd done after they'd entered the apartment was sit down on the couch and pull out his homework. When Goten questioned him about doing his work in the living room, the teen had muttered something about wanting a change of scenery. Goten had been fooled by his explanation but Trunks hadn't.
From behind he could hear Chisa ask Gohan if he could get some snacks for them before offering her assistance. The girl caught Trunks' eye when he glanced back at her and gave a little nod. He waited until they had left the room to bring up his concerns about Gohan's behavior with Goten.
"I don't think your brother likes me," he admitted to him.
"What? Are you sure? Gohan likes everybody."
"Everybody but me." Trunks set down his controller and rested his head on his hands (which were, in turn, braced on his thighs). "Ever since he met me he's been frowning at me. I don't think he wants me to be your friend."
While Goten didn't want to believe his brother would dislike someone practically on sight, he also didn't want to make Trunks mad by saying he didn't believe him. "He can't tell me who I can be friends with. He's not my tousan."
Trunks was unfamiliar with the term "tousan" but he could figure out what it meant from the context. "But he's your big brother. I don't have any experience when it comes to older siblings but I think they're supposed to look out for you."
"But you haven't done anything wrong!"
"Sometimes people don't like someone even if they haven't done anything to earn it." He could see that Goten didn't quite understand so he dropped the discussion. "Let's keep playing," he suggested.
Trunks left for home soon after Chisa did. Without her to distract Gohan the teen wouldn't leave him and Goten alone. One good thing had come out of being constantly harassed, though. Goten was starting to see his point when it came to his brother. He hoped that his new friend would talk to Gohan and get him to leave him alone.
He had forgotten to call his father to tell him where he would be but he figured he wouldn't be too worried. Hopefully he wouldn't assume the worst and think he was off video taping another unfortunate principal. If he would just bother to look he would find his camera on the bookshelf in his room, but Trunks didn't think his father would think to look if he became too angry.
Just as he raised his hand to push the button to open the door to the air lock, the door opened and a familiar form stepped out. "Hi, Papa," he said sheepishly.
"Hi, Trunks. I was just looking for you. Would you like to tell me why you're so late?" His tone of voice said that his request was more of an order.
"It's not what you think. I wasn't off tormenting people again, I was over at Goten's house."
"I met him at school today. He's in the class across the hall."
Vegeta wasn't sure whether or not to believe him but eventually decided to give him the benefit of the doubt. "I don't care if you go hang out with friends after school, but next time tell me first, okay?" He knew that the worry he still felt was leaking out into his voice and hated it.
"Sorry. It was sort of a spur-of-the-moment thing, though. But I guess I could have called you from his house and left a message..."
Sighing, Vegeta turned around and re-entered the airlock with Trunks trailing behind. "It's interesting how you always have good ideas after you need them. Guess you're like me in that respect."
"I'm like you in a lot of respects." Trunks smiled slightly at the thought. "Papa, I'm glad I came to live with you."
His father didn't say anything for a long while. The air lock door that led to Hedin was opening before he finally responded to what Trunks had said. "I'm glad, too."
Author's Note: Comm is short for "communicator". It's an evolved form of the telephone that also lets you see who you're talking to. It can also access special content to speed up tasks (for example: when ordering take-out you would get a graphical menu instead of a person).
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