“So, Bra, what time did Goten drop you off at?” Bulma asked the next morning at breakfast.
 “Oh, about midnight, I think,” Bra said vaguely.
 “Yes, I think so.”
 “Huh.  How odd.  Because when I looked at my clock, you know, when you were coming in, it said four-thirty.”
 Bra looked down at her cereal. “Oh?” she said. “H—how str—strange.” She attempted a smile and reached for the coffeepot, but her hand was trembling, so she put it back in her lap.
 “So, why don’t you tell me what you and Goten were doing until four-thirty, hmm?”
 “Uh, well, see, we went to the movies, but I didn’t like it, so we left that one.”
 “Which puts us at, maybe, ten.”
 “Yes.  So, then, we looked at other movies.”
 “But there weren’t really any other good movies, so we went to the park and just walked around.”
 “Okay, maybe midnight.”
 “And then…”
 Bulma paled. “Bra, you didn’t…”
 “Good morning.  Chibi Azami is still asleep, and I’m letting Marron sleep in.  So, Imoto, what didn’t you do?” Trunks asked, as he stepped in the kitchen. “Hey, Bra, didn’t you get home kinda late?”
 She glared at her brother. “Thank you, Niichan, for bringing that up.”
 Trunks grinned. “For all those times you did it to me.”
 Bra muttered something under her breath. “So, me and Goten were walking in the park and we sat on a bench and we fell asleep, okay?  And I woke up and I looked at my watch and I was totally shocked and…and how the heck did you hear me come in, anyway?”
 Bulma looked at her daughter. “You just fell asleep on a park bench?”
 Trunks looked at his sister doubtfully. “Really?” he asked, his voice dripping sarcasm.
 “Yes, Niichan, really.  And even if that weren’t all, you’re not Tousan, you can’t boss me around.”
 “Heck, even Tousan can’t boss you around,” Trunks mumbled.
 “Excuse me,” Bra said, “but I’m not hungry anymore.  I’ll be in my room.  Goodbye.” She flounced upstairs and opened her window.  She sat on the seat and just looked out.
 “Boo!” Goten said, flying up.
 Bra shrieked. “Goten, don’t do that!” she yelled.
 He hovered next to her window. “Sorry.  Didn’t mean to scare you.  How are you?”
 “Fine.  You?”
 “Well, Kaasan and Tousan didn’t ask how late I was out.”
 “Kaasan and Niichan did.  Tousan’s out training or something.”
 “What did you tell them?” Goten asked sympathetically.
 “Well, Kaasan knew I came home at four-thirty, so I told her we fell asleep on a park bench.”
 Goten grinned. “That’s a good excuse.”
 “Well, do you think I’m gonna tell her we made out all night?”
 “A little more than that.”
 “Yes, but not that much.  Besides, if I said that, Trunks would go and try to kill you a couple of times.”
 “True.  So, do you want to do anything today?”
 Bra shook her head. “No, I just want to sleep today, if that’s okay.”
 “That’s cool.  Me, too, actually.  I’ll see you tomorrow, okay?”
 “Yeah.  ’Bye.” Bra leaned against the glass and blew her breath out.  It steamed up the window.  She groaned.  What was wrong with her?  Why did she have to take everything so seriously?  So she and Goten had made out.
 But it was more than that.
 Bra could feel the change inside her.  And she sensed that he felt it, too.
 Oh, no.  No. Bra opened her window all the way and began searching for her father.


 Vegeta felt his daughter before he actually saw her.  He could feel something bothering her.  He hoped she wasn’t going to try and unload some huge emotional problem on him.
 “Tousan,” she said, “I have a question.”
 “All right.” Vegeta could deal with questions.
 “How do you know if you’ve mated with someone?”
 Vegeta almost choked.  He looked at his daughter. “Have you?” he asked.
 She looked down. “I think maybe,” she whispered.
 “Kakarott’s son?” Vegeta sneered.
 Bra nodded. “If I have, it’s with him.”
 “Why do you think you have?”
 “I feel…different.  And I know he does, too.”
 “You know?”
 “Yes, Tousan.”
 “Without a doubt?”
 She nodded again.

 “Then, yes, you have.  If you can feel his uncertainty, and know that it’s from him, then you have.” Vegeta could hardly believe the words coming from his mouth.  His daughter and Kakarott’s son?  Royalty and third class?  The worst of it was, he knew he wasn’t really as displeased as he should have been.  Somehow, Kakarott had gotten to him, and they were…friends.

 Bra bit her lip. “Great.”
 “Has he mated with you?”
 “I don’t know.”
 Vegeta’s voice was almost gentle. “If you look, you’ll be able to tell.”
 “I will?”
 “If you’ve truly mated, he can’t really keep any secrets from you.”
 She let out her pent-up breath. “Oh.  Thank you, Tousan.  At least I know.” She started to fly away.
 “Yes, Tousan?”
 “For your sake, and only for your sake, I hope he feels the same.”
 Bra nodded. “Me, too,” she said. “Well, I guess I better go find out.” She grinned at him and flew off towards the Son house.
 “Oh…Bra.  What a surprise,” ChiChi said.
 “Hi, ChiChi-san.  Is Goten home, by any chance?”
 “Yes…yes.  Come in.  Sit down.” ChiChi wiped her hands on a towel and went to the stairs. “Goten!  Goten, get up!  You have a visitor.”
 Goten stumbled down the stairs. “Oh.  B-chan.  What’s up?”
 “Well, I need to talk to you.”
 “Oh.” Goten blinked a couple of times. “Uh, want to go outside?”
 “Yeah, sure.”
 Goten opened the door for her. “So, what do you need to talk about?”
 She took a deep breath and let it out slowly. “I have a problem,” she said slowly.
 “What can I do to help?”
 She gave him a look. “Try to think about what I need,” she said.
 “Just do it, please,” she begged.
 “Okay,” he agreed, and leaned back.  Suddenly, his eyes popped open. “Oh.  By Dende.”
 Bra nodded. “Yeah.  That’s my problem.”
 Goten shrugged. “Well, it’s not a problem anymore, not if we’re mated to each other.”
 “You mean…”
 Goten looked at her in disbelief. “You thought I wasn’t?”
 “I couldn’t hope that you were.”
 Goten shook his head. “I can’t believe you.  Bra, how could you imagine I wasn’t mated to you?” He moved behind her and hugged her tight against him. “This probably isn’t very diplomatic, but that is about the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard you say.”

 She wrapped her arms around him in a backward hug and rested her chin on his forearm. “I can live with that,” she said.
 His chin rested on top of her head and he closed his eyes. “I could live with this,” he said.

 “Live with what?”
 “Oh, holding you tight like this for long stretches of time.”
 “Well, I could get used to being held like this.”
 Goten stood up. “You know what I want to do?”
 “Take you to a movie and make out in the back row.”
 Bra gasped, then giggled. “At least you’re blunt about it.  A lot of guys wouldn’t say that.”
 “Heck, you already know what’s on my mind.”
 Bra grinned at him. “Okay, then, let’s go.”
 “Good.  Can I carry you, please?”
 “You certainly are in a strange mood,” Bra consented.
 “Hey, it’s not everyday you find your lifemate, now is it?”
 Bra had to admit he was right.
 They got to the movie theater within minutes. “Oh, look, it’s Leiko,” Goten said.
 “Oh, goody,” Bra said flatly.
 “Goten!  And…Goten’s girlfriend.  How great to see you again!” Leiko cried.
 “Sorry, Leiko.  Yesterday, she was my girlfriend.  Now, she’s my fiancée.  And her name is Bra.”
 “Haven’t you forgotten something?” Bra asked frostily.
 “Well, her last name is Briefs,” Goten finished.
 Bra shook her head. “No, no, no.  Not about that.”
 “Well, then, no, I can’t think of anything I’ve forgotten.”
 “You neglected to ask me.”
 Goten looked surprised. “Well, you weren’t going to say no, were you?” he asked anxiously.
 “Of course not!”
 “Then what’s the problem?”
 Leiko began laughing. “Well, he’s your problem, Bra.  Have fun with it.”
 “Oh, don’t worry, I will.”
 “I seem to be off to a bad start,” Goten said to no one in particular.
 Bra patted his cheek. “And I won’t let you forget it, don’t you worry.”
 Goten groaned and stepped forward to pay for the tickets. “Does this make up for it?  It’s the most romantic, most gushy movie that was playing.”
 Bra looked at the tickets. “Somewhat,” she admitted. “Now, let’s go.”
 About two hours later, looking strangely pristine, the two emerged from the theater.  Bra groaned.
 “What’s wrong?” Goten asked.
 “I just realized that I went to see you without tell Kaasan where I was going.  She’s probably freaking out.”
 “Whoops,” Goten said sympathetically.
 “Yeah.” Bra straightened. “Well, I’d best face the flames.  If I can, I’ll meet you this afternoon?”
 Goten nodded. “Hope you can make it.”
 Bra gulped and headed for home.