Dragon Ball/Z/GT Fan Fiction ❯ Guardian Might ❯ The Cost of Arrogance ( Chapter 1 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Chapter 1: The Cost of Arrogance


It can make or break a man. Gohan knew this. He had watched firsthand how arrogance mixed with pride had caused Vegeta to win and lose battles. He had seen how it had given Vegeta an edge, allowing him to beat some very mighty opponents, yet it always managed to get in the way at crucial moments. Especially when fighting strong adversaries like Frieza and his father, Goku. Each time his arrogance caused his pride to take a hit, Vegeta would come back stronger, for sure, but he was never able to push aside one of his greatest flaws that caused him to loose. Arrogance.

As Gohan looked up a Cell, he saw the price of his own arrogance. The power he had gained in his ascension was incredible, there was no denying it, but as it flowed through his body, pulsing in his muscles and humming in his ears, it buried itself in his mind. It grew roots that over powered his normal way of thinking, that was so clear and precise even when he was a Super Saiyan. This new power was different, superior. It rearranged the normal, kind, loving thoughts; corrupting them and in some instances replacing them with thoughts of causing pain, torturing someone for hurting his friends and this level of superiority combined with a heavy dose of hatred all added up to create an arrogance that made him believe that Cell wasn’t worthy of touching him, let alone defeating him.

He had been wrong. So very wrong. And the price of his misuse of power now stood in front of him, gathering all the energy it needed to destroy the Earth and everyone who lived on it.

In a way he was glad that the camera that had been broadcasting the battle wasn't working anymore. He didn't need his mother or friends watching as he royally screwed up. It was bad enough that the friends that were here had to witness this before they were obliterated.

To his right he could sense his father watching him but he didn't dare look over. He didn't want to see the look on his father's face. He didn't want to see the horror, the anger or even the disappointment that was being directed at him. He should have listened to his dad. He should have kept his mind clear like Piccolo had taught him. He should have thought about Vegeta and the price his own arrogance had cots him. The difference between himself and Vegeta, was that the Saiyan Prince always got another chance to overcome it. As things stood now Gohan wasn't going to be lucky enough to have that chance.

Out of the corner of his eye he could see movement. Not from Cell but from his dad. He didn't need to turn his head to know what his father was planning on doing. He know his father well enough that he could guess pretty accurately. His father had a plan. A plan that would most likely result in his death. Gohan’s teeth ground together in frustration. He couldn't let that happen. He wouldn't let that happen.

He had already seen his dad die because of him. He had seen his dad throw himself in dangerous situations countless times because of him. There was no way he was going to put his mother through losing his father again. Not if he could help it.

Clenching his fists, Gohan pushed himself to his feet and walked purposefully towards Cell. As he did, he let his mind wander briefly to the half dozen times he’d seen his father pull off this trick since he’d come home, and the thousand times more Goku had used it to beat him in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber. He had asked to learn it himself, only to be shot down by his mother at the last minute. Not because it was a dangerous technique, but because his Mother refused to let him learn something that could allow him to escape his studies. It was bad enough that he could fly!

He could vividly remember the conversation that Piccolo and his father shared early into the three years before the androids, both had been surprised at how fast he was improving in skill. It wasn't until Vegeta, during one of is rare appearances to see how ‘Kakarot’s inferior training was progressing’, interjected why. Saiyans had a natural ability to pick up techniques wherever they went. It was a defence mechanism, a quick way to ensure that young battle inexperienced Saiyans actually made it to adulthood. It was programed in them to watch, learn and reuse the most powerful and deadly techniques that their enemies used against them. It was why Goku has been able to produce a perfect Kamehameha wave the first time – even if it had been much smaller than the one that Master Roshi had used. The hum of energy being built around Cell bought him back, as he glared up at the monster in front of him he hoped that he had enough Saiyan in him for this to work.

Gohan shook his head. It had to work. There was no alternative.

Without a second glance, Gohan shot off a blast towards his friends. It wasn't big enough to hurt anyone seriously, at most the cliff would collapse; but it would distract them long enough for him to begin step two. As the blast hit, sending rock and dust in the air and concealing his moves from those who were watching, Gohan reached out a hand to touch Cell.

Behind Gohan his father, mentor and friends all managed to get out the blasts way before it hit the cliff. Goku was momentarily stunned as he jumped out of the range of destruction. What in the world was Gohan thinking? Was he losing it and hallucinating a switch in roles? The dust cleared as Goku looked over at the others seeing the same shocked looks on their faces that mimicked his. Even the pokerfaced Piccolo and stone faced Vegeta seemed shocked at Gohan's actions. It was completely out of character for Gohan. He wouldn't have just decided to attack those he cared for, unless he had a good reason.

Had he seen what Goku was about to do? Piccolo looked at the Saiyan who seemed just as perplexed about Gohan's move as he was. The Namekian frowned, thinking back to before the blast. He couldn't remember sensing a deadly amount of energy. No doubt it would have hurt if any of them had been hit with it, but it hadn’t, which meant that it had been sent towards them for another reason. Could his former student have sensed that Goku was planning on stepping in? He growled. Could that have been it? Was that blast a warning to back off and not interfere? Piccolo crossed his arms. More than likely. The kid had been more than arrogant before and it was more than likely that the kid still thought that he had a chance at defeating cell.

Goku and Piccolo looked at each other. Despite their differences and Goku's general demeanour of nothing phasing him, it looked as if they had come to the same conclusion.

Gohan had been warning them off.

Goku's frown deepened. There was no time for this territorial macho stuff. Things had reached a point where Gohan could not comeback from. The arrogance he had shown earlier had shocked Goku to a point where he almost regretted sending Gohan into fight. Almost. As much as he didn't want to admit it, Gohan was the only one who stood a chance at defeating Cell and he had been the only one to bring Cell to a point where the monster couldn't see any way out other than by turning himself into a bomb. It was amazing that an eleven year old could do that, but it had also proven one of Goku's biggest fears. Gohan was too young to be using this kind of power. If only he had realised that sooner.

It didn't matter, Goku thoughts as the dust started to settle. He just needed to –


Trunks' cry broke through both Goku's and Piccolo's thoughts and they looked out where the time traveller was looking. Gohan stood in front of Cell, left hand raised and slightly touching the energy bloated creature, his right held up in a similar fashion as Goku had had his positioned in before the blast. It didn't take long for them all to realise what was going on and to catch up to Trunks' thinking. The feeling that a bucket of ice water had been dropped on his head flooded Goku and he instantly got himself ready to get to Gohan using Instant Transmission, while Piccolo, Krillin and Trunks all prepared to fly as fast as they could towards the preteen. Before they could lift off the ground, before Goku with lock onto Gohan completely, Gohan and Cell disappeared.

Gohan knew that any amount of increased pressure was going to set Cell off, still as he just barely touched Gero's creation, he placed a shield around the two of them as a precaution. He heard Trunks' scream behind him and knew that if was only a matter of seconds before his Father used the same technique that Gohan was about to use. He wasn't going to let that happen. He felt Piccolo, Krillin and Trunks' ki all increase at the same time as his Father's. Time was running out. If he was going to do this he needed to do this now. With his had held the same way he had seen his Father do multiple times before, Gohan concentrated on where he wanted to go. With a deep breath he glared up at Cell and transported the both of them away from the battlefield.

High above the Earth, Cell and Gohan floated. Gohan could make out the continents below him and had he been in a different situation he would have enjoyed the sight. He was high enough up in the atmosphere that with a shield no damage would be inflicted upon the planet. He let his hands fall to his sides and moved back away from Cell.

'Do you honestly think this is going to protect the Earth? I can still easily destroy it from up here,' Cell gloated, his smirk looking even more sinister in his bloated form.

'I know,' Gohan said. 'But I've taken that into consideration.'

Cell's smirk disappeared as he gazed down at Gohan. He tried to work out what he had missed. There was no way they were high enough above the Earth for it not to be destroyed by the explosion. What had he missed? What made this child so confident that he was going to protect the Earth? Then something caught his eye. A small flicker of light, no, it wasn't light, it was electricity. Cell's eyes widened almost comically as he realised his mistake. It was impossible. How had this kid managed to do this without him noticing? It was impossible. Every time Cell thought he had the upper hand with this kid he managed to turn the tables around. If this kid wasn't watched over by a Guardian Angel he would be very surprised.

Gohan smirked. He didn't know how he had been able to sneak the shield past Cell, but somehow he had managed to do it and now Cell was realising his fatal mistake.

'I've had enough of this! I'm sick of you hurting people, whether I know them or not,' Gohan said getting into position.

A bright white light started to gather in Gohan's hands as the smirk disappeared from his face and was replaced with a glare, so similar to the one that had graced his father's face when battling enemies like Frieza and Raditz. Cell's eyes widened even more as he processed what Gohan's plan was and he knew that it wasn't going to go in his favour.

'No! Don't! Stop it!'

'I won't! It's time this ended. You wanted to fight and now it's happened. You're reaping the reward of your own actions.' Gohan's glare was like steal, it seemed unbreakable and it caused even more fear to run down Cell's spine.


Cell tried his last gambit, his last argument against what Gohan was about to do. 'If you do this you'll die too.'

Gohan seemed to deflate slightly and Cell smirked thinking he had gotten through to the boy.

'I know.'

The two words held more meaning then Cell ever thought that two words could hold and for the first time since Gohan stepped foot onto the battlefield, he realised that he wasn't just some ordinary kid. There was something more. This kid had thought everything out right down to the consequences of his actions. He may have been blinded before by his arrogance but now his eyes were seeing 20/20, and that scared Cell more than anything.


The last syllable left his lips and Gohan pushed the blast toward Cell. The moment it touched him he exploded, filling Gohan's line of sight with bright yellow and red light. Cell's scream vibrated around until it could no longer be heard over the explosion. As it washed over Gohan he didn't stop his attack. He kept pushing the energy towards where Cell had been until he could sense nothing left of the monster – not a single cell, not a piece of his ki. Satisfied that Cell was no more, Gohan stopped his Kamehameha and felt the waves of energy hit him for the first time. He suppose that he was past the point of feeling any pain because he could feel nothing, or maybe it was because he knew that he wasn't going to be dead for long. Regardless of how he felt or what he felt, he closed his eyes as his vision left him and said that one thing that had been nagging at him since he realised that he had let his power go to his head, as his body was shrouded by white light.


Goku stared up at the sky in horror. It wasn't possible. There was no way that Gohan had done what he had done, but search as he might he wasn't able to sense Gohan's ki. But that meant nothing. He could be hiding his ki, or it might be masked by the explosion. The more he looked at the explosion the more the hope that Gohan has made it out alive faded. He could sense that he wasn't the only one who was feeling this way. Beside him Piccolo could do nothing but stare up at the explosion. He knew that his student was at the centre of it, he wasn't going to deceive himself like some of the others were doing but that didn't stop the feeling of complete despair run through him. Krillin was as horror struck as Goku was, Yumcha and Tien were the same. Trunks seemed unable to vocalise his own anguish and Vegeta vocalised his own feelings the only way he knew how.

'An honourable death for a Saiyan warrior.'

Goku fell to his knees as the full impact of what he was witnessing hit him. Gohan. The little boy who he had saved and loved with all his heart, who he had thrown into battle in order to save the Earth, was gone. His son was gone.

He had never felt so helpless. No helpless wasn't the right word. Goku didn't think that there was any word that could be used to describe how he was feeling. Nothing seemed good enough. Nothing seemed to fit. Realisation of how Gohan must have felt when Goku himself had died washed over him and he suddenly found it hard to breathe. The feeling was constricting, pushing on his heart and causing more pain than the heart virus had ever given him. He wanted it to stop, but that felt impossible. He didn't think that the feeling was ever going to leave. Not until he wished Gohan back and was sure that the young boy was ok.

A hand on his shoulder dragged him out of his thoughts and he looked up at Piccolo.

'Goku,' The Namekian said. 'Cell is gone. I can't sense any trace of him. He did it.'

'Hmmm,' Goku said. He didn't trust his voice.

'We need to get going. We don't want to keep Gohan waiting too long,' Krillin sighed. 'Goku?'

Goku stayed where he was on the ground. His legs didn't seem to want to move just at this moment. His heart was still constricting and he couldn't take his eyes off the spot where the explosion had once been. He clenched his fists and forced himself back onto his feet. Krillin was right. They needed to get to the Lookout to make their wish and bring Gohan home.

The trip to the Lookout was short and silent. Everyone seemed to the effected why by what they had witnessed and not even Trunks had objected when Krillin had picked up Eighteen so that Dende could heal her. Goku and Vegeta looked at each other once during the whole flight, but neither said anything to the other. Nothing needed to be said. Vegeta's pride was bruised as was Goku's heart, wounds that would take time to heal; but enough was said during that brief glance and Goku knew that Gohan had managed to gain Vegeta's respect – even if it was begrudgingly.

The group landed on the lookout and were greeted by Dende who wore a strange expression on his face; a mixture of happiness and sadness, and expression that Goku didn't think was even possible. They didn't stand around and make idle chit chat, they had more pressing matters at hand. It did not take long for Dende to heal everyone, including Eighteen, and as they watched her fly away, after yelling at Krillin, they knew that she wasn't going to be a threat anymore. The group made their way over to where Dende had the Dragon balls ready and waiting for their return. Moments later the sky darkened and Shenlong, the Eternal Dragon, hovered above them waiting for them to make their wishes.

Krillin was impressed. Not even Kami, the previous Guardian of Earth had had enough power to make Shenlong grant two wishes, but he supposed that that was what happened when you're trained by Nameks.

The first wish wasn’t hard to agree on, the wording of the wish however was difficult. Finding a way to make sure Cell didn’t return with all his victims proved to take some time

'Dende, if we wish everyone back, Gohan should be among them, correct?' Trunks asked.

Dende nodded. 'Yes, he was after all killed in the explosion that Cell created.'

'Then that's our first wish,' Goku said.

Dende nodded and looked up at the Eternal Dragon. 'Oh great Shenlong, we wish that all those that had been killed by Cell to be brought back to life.'

Shenlong's eyes glowed red. 'It shall be done.'

Smile’s seemed contagious as ki's that had disappeared returned to Earth, feeling slightly confused but unharmed. Even Piccolo had a smirk on his face, even Vegeta’s face seemed to relax some. Goku closed his eyes and searched for the most important ki to him and clenched his jaw when he couldn't find Gohan.

'He's not here,' Goku said, opening his eyes and looking around at everyone.

'Are you sure?' Piccolo asked before starting his own search, only to come to the same conclusion as Goku. The others too were unable to locate the young warrior as well.

'Maybe he didn't come back because of how he died?' Tien said. 'While he was killed by Cell, it could also be said that the Kamehameha might have helped as well.'
'Dende, we need to wish specifically for Gohan,' Krillin said, seeing that they were all in agreement on what to use their second wish for.

Dende looked up at Shenlong again. 'Shenlong, we wish for Gohan Son to be brought back from the otherworld.'

Shenlong's eyes glowed red before quickly dimming. 'This is beyond my power.'


'What do you mean?'




'N o!'

'Shenlong, how are you unable to bring back Gohan Son? He should be in otherworld. Does he not wish to return?'

Goku felt like he was in shock. Did Gohan not want to come back because of his actions? Was his son so angry he’d refuse to return to life? The clenched feeling that had been overpowering his heart seemed to intensify and started to spread throughout his chest.

'The one that you call Gohan Son is beyond my reach.'

'Beyond your reach?' Krillin questioned. 'How is bringing someone back from otherworld beyond your reach?'

'Krillin’, Goku began but was unable to finish before Shenlong started to speak again.

'The one you speak of is no longer in this realm, nor in any other realm in which my powers can be used. He is in a part of the Universe that is too far away for even my powers to reach.