Bells & Whistles "Past"

It has been nearly three years since that fateful day. Trunks took that final plunge that altered my life forever. As I stood by his sister, I couldn't hide my tears. Bra naturally tried to console me, but she too, knew the reasons behind the drops from my eyes. There was nothing either of us could do. This was it, Trunks and I could never be.

And even now, as I read the headlines on the mainpage of Western Capital City's newspaper, The WCC Tribune, I have to question fate. Trunks' life has been nothing close to happy and content. Ever since that day, the reporters have kept the world informed of the troubles the once 'World's Most Eligible Bachelor' was enduring. What started out as an arranged marriage to the daughter of another powerful company president was turning into disaster for Trunks and Capsule Corporation. Bulma had arranged it. Her son had hesitated when she told him, but he gave in. He didn't know what he wanted out of life anyway so he allowed his mother to cut him a path. It wasn't uncommon afterall, for corporations to seal deals by the marriage of offspring between executives. Bulma had waited long enough for Trunks to choose his own mate and he never bothered to seek one out. So she got one for him. Her desire for grandchildren and her worry of Capsule Corporation slipping out of the Briefs family control without an heir were pressures she couldn't be patient with any longer.

Sure, Trunks' wife was beautiful and grade A super model quality. She had been trained since birth to make a wonderful corporate wife, but nobody had expected the stange twist of fate that bore down on the union of Trunks and her.

I remember the days before the wedding like they were just yesterday. Trunks was nervous as he always is at something new and unpredicatble. And me, being his closest, bestest friend (aside from Goten who wouldn't understand anyway), he confided in me and sought the comfort a friendship often offered. I had asked him if he loved her. He said in marraiges such as this, love eventually could come around. "You learn to love it." he said with a semi-confident smile. But his eyes betrayed him. His blues were searching my soul and trying to grasp something from my heart. At first I thought it was out of our tight bond of friendship which of course, would change once he was married. His wife was protective and jealous. She thought of me as a threat. But his eyes showed something to me that he had never shown before. It made me wonder, did he feel the same way about me as I have about him for so many years? Inwardly I cursed myself for not showing him my secret crush that manifested into love for him. But again, I always thought his 'love' for me was like that felt between brother and sister. He often referred to me as his step-sis. And again, I returned to the image of his searching blue eyes.

Anyway, for the past three years, they have been trying to conceive a child... a must-have heir to the Capsule Corporation and Briefs future. Frustration and humiliation plagued them as reporters found out about the problem while Trunks was trying desperately to find out if it was he or she with the fertility problem. After both opted for medical examinations it was found that his perfect corporate wife was barren. She would never bear his child. Standard marital rules state that if a child cannot be produced from the union than the marriage can be annulled. Whether they discussed it or not, it was now public. They were breaking up permanently. The two companies forged in the partnership were now also on shaky ground. I cried the night I heard this news. Trunks didn't deserve this. He was the perfect gentleman and extremely handsome and kind, a 'white knight' that women sought so hard to find but rarely did. I have no doubt in my mind that he attempted every option to try and save the marriage. Perhaps it was the wifey's choice or could it be she knew of her barrenness all the while and went through with this so her daddy could get a piece of the Capsule Corporation and Briefs fortune? Ah, but I'm probably being bias out of my own caring for Trunks.

Trunks had once told me a while back that he didn't want to get married out of fear of this very situation. Too much value had been placed on him too fast thanks to his mother. Every woman he met or dated was out to get his fame and fortune and he doubted there would ever be a female that could overlook those and love him for himself. I wanted to scream and throw myself at him and say "HERE I AM!!!" but that never happened. Something held me back. And even today, if I can find out what it was, I'll grind it to a pulp! Bulma had told him that if he married money then the woman wouldn't care about his own and would love him for him. But, Trunks tested her theory by dating money. He even took it one step further by dating fame. Be if famous corporate daughter or movie star, he ended up used. All they wanted was his body. Trunks became their boy toy. Needless to say, Bulma never said another word about that theory of hers.

And what about me? As gutsy and bold as I always thought myself, I was a coward around Trunks. I could never tell him how I really felt about him. Perhaps if I had, he'd have seen me differently. But, maybe I feared our great friendship would change if I let the cat out of the bag? Probably. We had a perfect friendship. Now, I've graduated college and am a financial assistant at a prominent investment bank in Satan City. A scholar of money as my dad puts it. Okay dad, whatever. But, I'm single and facing similar problems as Trunks. I'm Mr. Satan's granddaughter so his fame and fortune follow me. Male or female, they're all gold-diggers. And so, I can't help but wonder, was Trunks and I meant to be together? We have so much in common that its uncanny!

Glancing at the news on tv, the same subject appears as on the newspaper. Isn't there anything more important going on in the world than the nitpicking of a corporate marriage gone awry!? Perhaps I should blast something if only to draw the attention away from Trunks' troubles. Trunks has done nothing but good for these people and they turn and stomp his life to the ground! He's given them jobs, put money back into these cities, defended them from deadly enemies, helped save this entire planet, and his company gives them wonderful conveninces and devices to make their lives easier. How can society treat him like this!? Vegeta once said that Earthlings are crueller and more selfish than any full-blooded saiyan could ever be. I now see his perspective.

I want to run over to Trunks right now and hug him and tell him everything's going to be okay. Is my motherly instinct kicking in? Why isn't his own mother helping him through this? Is the Briefs family really as cold as Trunks used to say it was as a joke? Was he joking or was he trying to be serious without hurting his and his family's pride? I have to wonder now.

So now what? Poor Trunks. Is it pity or sympathy that I'm feeling? Perhaps both? There HAS to be something I can do. There just has to be! The question of the century though, is what?

to be continued...