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where angels fear to tread

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Bulma felt her eyes unfocus, code spooling out from under her fingers as she typed. She snapped back to herself after a couple of lines: coding while half asleep was definitely a sign she was due for a break. She saved her work and stood with a groan, cracking her neck in a way that was surely not natural. She made sure to kick her eye-wateringly-expensive ergonomic chair on her way out of the office.

 

The sunlight was offensively bright and Bulma squinted as she made her way to the main compound, nodding at staff and ignoring security bots. She could hear the happy squeals of Bra as she got closer to the family area and she steeled herself to find her daughter eating dirt, having escaped her crib yet again. 

 

As she rounded the corner she was relieved to see that Bra had supervision of a certain limited type at least: Vegeta was meditating on the terrace, his tail sweeping back and forth in lazy arcs as Bra tried her best to catch it. 

 

“I thought you had died in your office and I would have to marry your father in order to keep my claim to your house,” he said in a deep drawl. 

 

She’d tried telling him innumerable times that he wasn’t funny, but it didn’t seem to have any effect. 

 

Bulma ignored him, expertly sticking a finger into the back of Bra’s pants as she scrabbled past. 

 

“Did you notice that your daughter needs her nappy changing? Or has your sense smell diminished in your dotage?”

 

He opened his eyes grinned at her, savage and bright. 

 

“You are so skilled at it I thought I’d wait for you.”. 

 

Bulma snorted. “Nice try, hotshot. I’m off to take a nap.”

 

She thought she heard him growl behind her, but paid no mind. He was perfectly capable of changing a nappy. Well, he was now. When Trunks was born a nappy changing might have ended in chaos and divorce, but they had got the hang of compromise over the years. 




She awoke suddenly, confused for a moment by the dark of the room. It was only the black-out drapes, she realised: she hadn’t slept the whole day away. The reason for her rude awakening was lying beside her, squinting up at the alarm clock he’d managed to set off. 

 

“Give me that,” she said, snatching it away from him and turning it off with a simple flick of her fingers. 

 

“You slept too long, woman,” he announced.

 

“And did you go ahead and marry my father in my absence?”

 

“Not yet.”

 

“Why him?” She asked, rolling over and tucking her hand under his frankly ridiculous bicep.

 

“Your mother would feed me to the point of death, but your father wouldn’t even notice if I married him.”

 

Bulma giggled at the thought while also making a mental note to never ask Vegeta about incest taboos in Saiyan culture. Sometimes it was best not to know, she had discovered. 

 

“Any you? What would you do without me?” He asked.

 

“I’d wish you back,” Bulma replied promptly, without really thinking about it.

 

“How? There are no dragon balls anymore,” he said, his perpetual scowl deepening for a moment. It was a genuine question—not patronising, not mocking—he expected her to know the answer because she always did. He was the first man she’d ever met who had never felt the need to explain her own inventions to her.

 

“I would create some,” she replied, looking past Vegeta, where she could almost see the equations spinning in the dark of the room. She would have to tear the universe in two to do so, splitting timelines that were never meant to be split. But it would be worth it, and she was sure she could fix any damage done. She wondered if she should work through some ideas anyway, just in case…

 

“Bulma.”

 

She blinked her husband back into focus, who was staring at her with the slightly awed expression he usually wore after they’d fucked. Bulma smiled at him, not sure what she’d done to deserve such regard but pleased nonetheless. He brought his fingertips up to her jaw and pressed them there, almost reverent. 

 

“My Queen,” he said, and she felt her love for him pull painfully tight: like a wire wrapped around her heart. He would not die before her, he was too strong, but if he did he would come back to her: she would make sure of it.