DB Multiverse

Dragon Ball Multiverse: The Novelization

Written by Loïc Solaris & Arctika

Adapted by npberryhill, Kakarotto Ka Power Level Kya Hai?, and Team

Rediscover the story of DBM, loaded with more detail. This novelization is verified as canon by Salagir, who also includes additions of his own. These have not been seen in the manga, and therefore make this story a true annex to the comic!


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Part 1 :12345

Round 1-1

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Part 3 :1112131415
Part 4 :1617181920
Part 5 :2122232425
Part 6 :2627282930


Part 7 :3132333435

Round 1-2

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Part 9 :4142434445
Part 10 :4647484950
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Part 12 :5657585960
Part 13 :6162636465
Part 14 :6667686970

Night 1

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Part 16 :7677787980
Part 17 :8182838485
Part 18 :8687888990

Round 2-1

Part 19 :9192939495
Part 20 :96979899100

Round 2-2

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Part 22 :106107108109110
Part 23 :111112113114115

Night 2

Part 24 :116117118119120

Round 3

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Part 26 :126127128129130
Part 27 :131132133134135
Part 28 :136137138139140
Part 29 :141142143144145
Part 30 :146147148149150
[Chapter Cover]
Part 30, Chapter 148.


Chapter 148

Translated by npberryhill

Meanwhile, at the other end of the universe.

The magically displaced competitors from various universes were still actively searching for the location of the arena, hoping to get back to their loved ones as quickly as possible. Son Goku concentrated intensely on the strongest energies back at the tournament — Son Gohan, Son Bra, Cell, even Majin Buu... if he could just manage to detect one of those, he could bring everyone back in an instant! But the universe was insurmountably enormous, the odds of finding them in all the areas of the universe were daunting, limited by the perceptions of a mere man.

For his part, Vegetto was just as focused. Still, with no idea where to even begin, he found the challenge to be extremely complex. Earlier, when he’d left the asteroid after his defeat, he had kept track of his destination, direction, and path. That had allowed him to rely on his own instantaneous movement, but now he’d have to fall back on instant transmission. He recalled how nobody had been able to feel his extraordinary power when he reached Super Saiyan 3 in space against Ginyu. If strength like that was undetected, how could the relatively weak powers of others be tracked? Only Son Gohan or Son Bra had any hope of getting his attention...

“This is impossible,” Goku sighed, showing signs of frustration. “Surely Gohan and the others are fighting, but they’re just too far away.”

“They’ve proven resourceful before,” Vegeta pointed out. “If they joined together, they might be able to put out a strong enough signal to be detected. Although, they have Videl and Bra to defend, and Cell to deal with...”

“Do not focus your search only horizontally,” #16 suggested to the group, calibrating his scanners. “We cannot ignore the areas of space above and below us, relatively speaking.”

A sudden burst of light behind them signified the joining of metamoran fusion. Gotenks stood before them, already transformed into Super Saiyan. Beside him, Trunks from Universe 16 crossed his arms, a bit pouty.

“No time to waste then!” the fusion exclaimed, wearing a mocking grin. “Let the incomparable Gotenks handle this side. The rest of you, take the other!”

An arm suddenly grabbed him from behind by the neck. Seeing its pink color, Gotenks’ face turned pale. But his old enemy seemed in a good enough mood this time.

“Alright then!” Buu announced. “To the strongest goes the glory! Me and my buddy here will take care of this hemisphere!”

A few chuckles sounded throughout the group, notably from Pan and Uub — as Gotenks’ reaction was hilariously sheepish. As for Trunks, he grinned before remembering his frustration.

“I’m surprised,” Vegetto said, his son flinching. “Why’d you let your double from the 18th merge with our Goten?”

“... Well, he does know the new improved version of the fusion,” Trunks grumbled. “I figured if he’s got those new abilities, might as well put them to use. Gotenks will probably be more effective, find the arena faster without me...”

In a rare display of compassion, Vegetto put his hand on the shoulder of his son, inviting him to join them in the search on their side. The Heloites hadn’t been paying attention to the others, focusing instead on their analysis — as elite warriors, they were well trained and were determined to rescue their compatriots and the innocents as quickly as possible.

“Xeniloum,” Eleim instructed, “you take the southern third. Tidar, the northern. I’ll scan the equator.”

“Understood!” the other two said in unison.

Almost all the group was now huddled in a circle, facing outwards. There were a few gaps in the form’s spacing, certain individuals choosing to remain solitary and others staying together. Gotenks and Buu had incredible perceptive abilities, and shared their zone — although there were a few others within their ‘half’ searching as well. From time to the time, the Djinn’s face would glance over at the Saiyan with amusement, the fusion bearing a troubled grin. He was reassured, to a certain extent, to have help from such a powerful being, despite their past differences. Buu was so amazing that, with his help, things could turn around very quickly. Between him and Vegetto, it was hard to imagine any threat existed that could pose them a challenge.

But he failed to account for Buu’s ability to toy around with even them, as the djinn had been sure to position himself in charge of the region that actually contained the tournament grounds. Thanks to another of his seemingly endless abilities, he was manually blocking out the arena’s true location so that no one would find it — that is, until the right moment, when he decided it was finally time for them to intervene. He certainly wanted the tournament to continue after Babidi’s charade was put to an end, an end he would most assuredly deliver when the time came. But, first and foremost, this kind of chaos could lead to fun of the unexpected and exciting variety. And there was also the chance Babidi’s plot might draw out the ever-elusive XXI, cause him to reveal more about himself. That would certainly be worth waiting for. But were Babidi to actually acquire the Dragon Balls, Zen Buu’s re-appearance would make a short end to the chaos.

A bit further down, Uub had joined up with his master and the two Pans. Goku felt that Uub’s innate connection with Majin Buu might give them an advantage, hoping he might sense the fat version somewhere near Babidi. But, it seemed the connection was drowned out, so to speak, by how closeby he was to Buu of universe 4. Uub had been dying to go and speak to the Djinn, ask him questions, but it wasn’t the right time. Buu, nearby, felt the lad’s eyes on him, and smiled inwardly. He had taken everything into account, even Uub’s connection with himself — and not only that, but the small pieces left behind at the arena were also hidden from his heir. Buu was indeed a mastermind, and had taken every precaution, especially with the new abilities he’d helped his reincarnation develop. No one could possibly detect the stadium, and in spite of his affections for the young warrior he had no intention of letting him spoil the fun.

A violent right hook. The ground splintered under the pressure. The asteroid trembled in fear.

Cell wiped a trickle of blood from his lips, sneering at his nemesis below. The perfect android held a slight edge against Son Gohan, but couldn’t seem to break him. The power acquired by the Saiyan over the years was truly a surprise, and was giving him all the fight he could handle. Yet, the truth was becoming plain. Gohan was far from enthusiastic about fighting, and certainly hadn’t been constantly training — not the way he had, day in and day out for the past twenty-seven long years. It was frustrating, but also exhilarating!

Gohan straightened, his chest scraped up. He too was amazed by the progress his foe had made since last they met. Back when he’d become a Super Saiyan 2, as a mere teenager, he’d blown past Cell’s perfect boasts with ease — yet it was only through his father’s sacrifice and Vegeta’s intervention that they’d at last found victory. This time, Cell’s power and skill was on an entirely different level, and he stood unaided against the nightmare of his youth once again. But Son Gohan’s power had also far surpassed that of his adolescence. He would defeat Cell again, alone this time, and protect his family.

“Cell,” he cried. “I’m going to crush you!!!” He threw himself at the bio-android.

“Try it, Gohan!” came the reply, darting to action.

Their fists slammed cheek to cheek, releasing an outwards repulse wave that dug a crater into the ground around them. Cell’s tail quickly snapped around Gohan’s leg, who couldn’t react in time and was sent careening into the heavens. The perfect warrior then focused his energy just in front of his chest in between his hands. His forehead gleamed with sweat as he let loose a grunting yell — he still had a few surprises yet in store, and it was time to unveil another.

Stabilizing quickly, Gohan’s eyes shot wide, pupils shaking at seeing a strange purple Kikoha build in Cell’s hands. The bio-android’s proud grin overshadowed his trembling flesh, as he loudly exclaimed new boasts.

“Try and survive this, you welp!”

He fired the sphere with a quick gesture, and though it was close, Gohan managed to dodge. The speed of the attack did indeed surprise him, but he quickly turned his attention back to Cell. Gero’s creation merely chuckled, opening his palms and detonating the Kikoha behind Son Gohan in a massive explosion. From the blast radius emerged a plethora of purple Kienzan, each honing in on the Saiyan with expert precision.

Gohan’s teeth grit quickly, his eyes sharpening as he darted through the air in a grand game of tag or die. The violet discs pursued as Cell stretched his arms to and fro, guiding their various paths through intense concentration. While Freeza had become somewhat adept at controlling one or two Kienzan at once, Cell had dug deep within the Frost Demon potential — through training finding that he could deploy many dozens of the attacks simultaneously. Among others, he’d developed this attack quite thoroughly, but it had required a great deal of work and the energy expenditure took a costly tole. In this instance, the contribution of energy from the wizard proved quite useful.

As the Saiyan weaved through one wave, the discs coming back around, he found a brief opening and turned to send a volley of his own energy blasts towards Cell. The perfect being let out a deep yell, forming a shield around his body and blocking the attack.

“What will you do now, Son Gohan!?” Cell mocked internally, desperately trying to keep control.

The Earthling was stunned, barely managing to dodge the blades that would sever his life and limbs were he not perfect. He knew he couldn’t keep this up, he had to react quickly. Cell’s new abilities were truly terrifying, and victory was seeming more and more unlikely.

‘Damn...’ he thought. ‘If I survive this, I’ve gotta warn Vegeta about this attack...’

“Tsssk,” Vegeta of the 13th scoffed, looking at the others with contempt.

The Saiyan Emperor’s disdain for teamwork needn’t be expressed with words. But the altruists were indeed making him feel nauseated with their teamwork and organization. Trusting in others, submitting to instructions... they truly had no pride. They complied with the orders of this ‘Son Goku’ without argument, the disgustingly kind counterpart of Kakarotto. To him they were nothing but loyal pets, blindly obeying their master. He would rather die than submit himself to such humiliation!

“It’s your choice whether or not to help in the collective effort,” a recognizable voice cut in from behind him. “But keep your comments to yourself.”

The Saiyan elite turned, annoyed, seeing his counterpart of Universe 18 glaring at him. Vegeta was fed up with this entitled version of himself, with this idiot that still clung to a useless status he’d discarded years ago. His presence served as a constant reminder what he might have become apart from the influence of Goku and Bulma, and oh how it pissed him off. Had he not stayed on Earth alongside his wife and rival, this would be him, a lonely and pathetic remnant still claiming to titles and conquest.

“You don’t give a damn about your companions, I’m sure,” Vegeta continued, mockingly. “But most of us have actual reasons why we fight. So shut up, ‘majesty’, and spare us all your indignities.”

“I don’t take orders like you, I’m not a follower!” the emperor yelled back angrily. “Where’s your Saiyan pride, Vegeta!? You were just as quick as the rest to follow the orders of a low-class. Don’t tell me you’ve become just as soft-hearted as these other good-samaritans? You make me want to throw up!”

“Oh, and your brilliant plan was to do what exactly? Defy our efforts and complain — oh yes that’s hilarious. And what will you do if we don’t find the arena? If Babidi wins and takes the Dragon Balls? You’d be trapped here too, moron. Rather than work together with others, even to save your own skin, you prefer to lecture us on your royal status. You’re the one with no pride! Perhaps when we find a way off this rock we’ll leave you behind, I guarantee you wouldn’t be missed.”

The Saiyan monarch’s eyes flared with rage. How could this despicable arrogant imposter dare speak to him in such a way? A Saiyan with no title and without an ounce of pride, given over completely to the good nature of Kakarotto and his smiling band of puppets!

“If you were still half the Vegeta I am, it would be you giving the orders! I can’t comprehend your pathetic softness, your universe must truly have been hell for you to have abandoned your rank, the very royal blood within your veins, to lower yourself to this point! Meanwhile, I defeated Freeza with my own two hands, I avenged our people, and I single-handedly drove the galaxy to its knees! Can you say the same?”

Vegeta merely smiled. “It’s a solid plan. You’d have me barking contradictory orders just to satiate your childish expectations? Hah, I’ve outgrown such pettiness.” Vegeta dictated his point with a low chuckle before continuing. “You may have beaten Freeza, but you’ve no idea the enemies I’ve faced. And at the end I have the joys of a family, a rivalry, and a little thing called peace. My pride, you say? I’ve not abandoned it, I’ve truly embraced it. My pride it what drives me to train again and again each day, to be the strongest — to become the greatest warrior alive — until they day when I’ll finally crush Son Goku with my own two hands! The pride of bettering myself, of defending others and dying for them — you’ll never understand it. The selfishness to which you so desperately cling only makes you weak.”

“Dying for others, hah?” the Saiyan scoffed, trying to regain momentum. “What kind of warrior, much less a prince, would do that? That’s the very definition of weakness, fool! You’re a weak coward, who follows the herd instead of daring to vy for top dog! You don’t even know how lead anymore!”

“Still on that, eh?” the 18th Vegeta replied. “It’s all you know how to do though, isn’t it? Yell orders, talk big... but you’ve got nobody here to order, and neither the strength nor the charisma to make any among us kneel. Insecurity and demand for recognition are hardly the qualities of a leader.” He shook his head. “Pathetic weakling.”

As the dispute festered, several of the others, having been distracted from their research by the scene unfolding, turned to watch. Future Trunks found the entire argument totally bizarre, as it felt like an outward display of an inward disagreement — each Vegeta representing aspects of his personality as avatars. One was the ruthless warrior consumed and driven by pride, and the other the loving father, devoted to honor and fighting for his loved ones. And yet, when he thought about it, the version from Universe 18 was more the result of both personalities being in harmony with one another. He was proud and honorable, but also ruthless towards his enemies and reliable in a fight. The other Vegeta, by contrast, seemed like a more bloodthirsty variant of the father he’d met when he’d first journeyed back in time. But even then, he’d started down the path towards becoming the man Trunks was proud to call father.

In spite of the growing tension, Trunks refrained from getting involved, partially out of curiosity to see where the feud would lead. A few other fighters stayed focused on searching for the arena, but Buu wasn’t among them. This was just the type of thing that drew his attention, though for very different reasons than Trunks...

“Weak? You want to test that? Why don’t we settle this right now!?”

“Hmph,” his counterpart sneered, grinning. “If you insist. It’ll be humiliating... for you.”

The emperor’s fist suddenly whizzed through the air without warning, nearly grazing the face of his counterpart. The latter had instinctively leaned back slightly and dodged the surprise attack. Trunks, as well as several others, were astonished at Vegeta’s reflexes and many began taking more interest in the action.

The ruthless Saiyan’s nose scrunched up with rage as he began pressing harder, swinging even more quickly at the offender. Vegeta’s eyes darted and dashed side to side relentlessly, but his cursed twin seemed able to avoid each and all of his strikes with such apparent ease that it was embarrassing. Even Son Goku was astonished by the agility and speedy movements of his eternal rival. Was it some kind of mental anticipation, because he knew his own fighting style and tendencies so well? No, it was far more than that. This was the end result of Vegeta’s long years of training — he’d already seen hints of it during the match with Kakarotto. Not a one of the angry Saiyan’s attacks landed, he had avoided each one in an extremely impressive display. The redeemed prince felt he had more than proved his point to the misguided and inferior version of himself, knowing quite well that the Saiyan Emperor could tell when he was being toyed with.

“Had enough?” Vegeta chuckled, hopping backwards a few steps. “Or are you so blind you’re still under the delusion you can actually touch me? Stop this childish tantrum before I really humiliate you — I’ve got a daughter to find before your psychopath stooges attack her.”

“... Curious, but do you still think I’m the one who should be humiliated?” the stubborn Saiyan leader shot back, refusing to relent an inch. “Look at the weakness you’ve owned by attaching yourself to a stupid family! It’s clear to me the reason you can’t reach Super Saiyan 3 like me — your idiocy in committing to love a female and growing soft and lazy on your ‘peaceful planet’. Surpassed even by your Kakarotto! Who’s really the pathetic one?”

Dictating his final statement with a golden flare and a scornful grin, the Saiyan lord instantly transformed into the third level of Super Saiyan. His power level was extraordinary, the demonstration flooding the entire oxygenated area with golden energy and turbulent winds, capturing everyone’s attention. Gast Carcolh, exasperated by the childish bickering, was about to intervene when Vegetto’s outstretched arm held him back. The fused Saiyan seemed extraordinarily captivated by the confrontation, as did Buu a bit further down.

While the source of the disruption continued to gloat with laughter, Vegeta of the 18th remained silent and unmoving — betrayed only by a vein on his forehead that had begun to show his frustration, and tightened fists. The Emperor took notice that he had apparently brushed a nerve, and exploded with even louder hysteria. Apparently, all one needed do to rile up his counterpart was insinuate that Kakarotto was superior, a delightfully easy provocation. At such taunts, this facade worn by the man that merely imitated his magnificence had begun to crumble.

Vegeta donned a threatening frown and transformed into Super Saiyan 2, crackles of blue lightning zipping around his body, swirling and kicking dust into the air. The brow-less Saiyan’s chuckle cut off as his ascended counterpart approached him with a determined look, until he was mere inches in front of his face, glaring with defiance. As a Super Saiyan 3, the Saiyan emperor was utterly shocked by what he sensed — Vegeta’s energy as a mere level 2 was possibly a match for his own. There was no comparison between this and the power he’d put on display in the fight with Kakarotto. During Buu’s attack, the Saiyan prince had briefly demonstrated nearly this level, but he now seemed even more serious than then.

“You can’t begin to comprehend what I’m capable of,” Vegeta condescended. “I could crush you without the slightest effort! And while I admit I do find that tempting, I’m afraid in the end you simply haven’t earned that privilege. There is only one warrior worthy to face me at my full power... Son Goku. As for you, my current level is more than enough to deal with your beloved level 3 — Emperor of idiocy!”

Throughout the years, Vegeta had faced his eternal rival many times while in a lower transformed state. He wasn’t merely boasting, and he knew full well his confidence was deserved, especially when his counterpart’s level 3 was a far cry from Goku’s.

Vegeta pressed his forehead against his double’s, the two staring daggers at one another unflinchingly. Vegeta of the 13th steered, but didn’t yield. Surely his twin was bluffing, he had to be! To hell with the rapprochement he was hoping for, or with any curiosity about his double. In the end, his boasts were nothing but an exaggerated invention. He was the one who had reached a level even further beyond — Super Saiyan 3, something he’d never even dreamed was possible. And this pale imitation, bound by chains of sentiment and weakness, was unable to match his transformation. That was fact, that was all that mattered, he had to be superior.

All that he was really impressed by was the other Vegeta’s provocative grin, which somehow still caused him to tremble with frustration. It was time to settle this little dispute, in a simple movement he could demolish his twin’s excessive ego.

Vegeta of the 18th was ready to strike, but his mind suddenly flashed to an image of his daughter. He had a second sense about it, Bra was in immediate danger. There wasn’t any more time to waste on this braggart, a remnant of his former self. His top priority was getting back to the arena, and demolishing that despicable Babidi for good.

The Saiyan’s transformation evaporated, Vegeta returning to his normal state. His counterpart hesitated, shocked, but considered attacking anyway. That is, until he realized he was surrounded by enemies, the type that wouldn’t let an attack against an untransformed opponent slide. So, he did the same and returned to base, though he was speechless, completely misunderstanding his double. Vegeta of the 18th shut his eyes and sighed.

“Unfortunately, this isn’t the time or place to settle things. But there’s no harm in waiting.”

“If that’s you’re only holdup... I can make you a ring,” a cheerful voice interrupted from nearby.

The two Saiyans turned towards the interlocutor, Buu, who had materialized a large bench just in front of them and was seated nonchalantly. Vegetto and Son Goku had joined him, each holding a bucket of warm buttery popcorn. Having taken advantage of the rocks nearby with his materialization, Buu had been handing out concessions to everyone in excitement over such a unique confrontation. It had been several minutes since the two Vegeta had begun to argue, and Buu’s improvisations were right in his wheelhouse. The Heloites, unamused by such childish squabbles, had moved further away to continue their search unhindered, accompanied by Android 16 and South Kaioshin. As for the Saiyans, a fight like this was basically irresistible, and they had taken their places around the fight with fascination. Trunks of Universe 16 was enjoying watching his father while he snacked on some treats. Pan, meanwhile, joined her grandfather who was nearly giddy with excitement. Gast could only facepalm.

“And what of your resolve?” Carcolh asked. “Didn’t you say a moment ago that you were determined to find the arena at any cost? Your families are in danger!”

“No worries, Super Namek!” Buu replied, amused. “I’m still scanning my sector of the universe, no problemo. See?” he pointed to a floating head. Indeed, the djinn had copied part of himself and delegated the task. Although, Gast was more worried than reassured by the display. Buu’s personality, along with the Saiyans and their obsession with fighting, was really slowing their efforts.

“I trust Gohan and Bra to handle things in the meantime,” Vegetto added, his mouth full. “I’m aware of the seriousness of the situation, but... two Vegetas going at each other — I’m not about to miss out on that, sorry.”

The two Saiyans in question remained frozen before the display, somewhat uncomfortable at the scene around them. Embarrassed, they turned their backs to one another.

“Ugh... Well, I suppose there’s no real harm in helping you fools,” Vegeta of the 13th relented, troubled by all the eyes fixed on him. “It’s not like I want to be stuck on this rock forever.”

“Agreed,” the other Vegeta replied, stubbornly pointing his gaze in the opposite direction.

He knew full well how his counterpart felt. In spite of his boasts of independence, he had always placed his own interests as paramount — even when that meant reluctantly teaming up with the Earthlings on Namek. On the verge of death, he had abandoned his stubbornness and begged Goku to defeat Freeza for him and for the entire Saiyan race. What this other Vegeta lacked was serenity and rivalry. But removed from those influences, he remained an intelligent and talented warrior. His pride had been exaggerated to galactic levels, sure, greatly exceeding that of his status as a mere prince. Thus, it would take a far greater effort and circumstance for him to be able to set it aside.

The two Saiyans at last walked away from each other, to the great disappointment of Goku, Vegetto, and Buu. Of course, there had been no resolve to the conflict. Vegeta of the 13th was still irritated by the inexplicable traits he saw as character flaws now prevalent in his counterpart. And yet, he couldn’t help but have an admiration for the other Vegeta. Although he had lowered himself in status to associate with inferiors and even cohabit with them, he remained dignified and above all, a powerful warrior. Still, Emperor Vegeta refused to consider his cooperation with them now as submittance to Son Goku’s instructions, but he would collaborate quietly and without complaint.

As for Vegeta of the 18th, he was already back to searching the unfathomable depths, fists clenched. The altercation had already passed from his mind, and he was again focused on saving his daughter.

“Just hang on, Bra... I will find you!”

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