Separator was a story I had known from the beginning that I was going to write. I wanted Raditz and Bardock to meet without Bardock knowing who Raditz was, though I wasn't exactly sure on the details of the plot. It was while writing an essay for an English class that I figured out the plot that I wanted. Basically, having Raditz and two other weak Saiyans being put on a single planet, and not conquering it. Then, Bardock goes there to see what's the matter. Though he was ordered to train them, it would be a waste of too much time, considering how weak they were, and Bardock would end up doing it for them without training them.
The basic theme of this story was that idealized notions often fail to compare to the reality of a situation. This being that there was simply nothing that could be done for those Saiyans, and Bardock wasn't going to help them. I wrote this story all in one night, when I was up very late, and boy did I suffer the next day. Still, it was worth it, for after I finished the essay, I felt like I was in prime writing shape. It took me about an hour to write, and then was immediately published here before falling asleep.
He closed his eyes. It was raining. That much, he liked. He lifted his head and let the drops fall upon him. Shaking his messy hair, he let himself enjoy it for one last moment before breaking out of his trance. He turned back around, and surveyed his position. Behind him was a small makeshift bunker. Truly, it was little more than some tree branches pressed against the cold rocks. A small smile played across his face, up past his scarred cheek for he saw three figures rustling beneath the bunker. In fact, he was sure they were squirming in agony over getting wet.
“You’re pathetic!” he growled, jumping forward, and landing in front of them. Mud went everywhere.
The three smaller, younger onlookers were none too pleased at being painted with the earth, and mumbled back to the man. He had none of that. Shooting forward, he tackled each one of them to the ground, pinning them all, and sneered.
“I was sent out here because you weaklings couldn’t even clear this pathetic planet! If you don’t want to listen to what I say, then I’ll leave! But if I leave, you won’t. I promise that.”
The Saiyan stood up and let the children regain their breath. Irritation ran through his tail as he motioned for them to put on their armor; and to his relief, they did so; this time, without hesitation. The man, pleased at their vigor, ushered them out into the downpour, though not before finding his own armor. Sighing to himself, he put on the green and black harness, and found his green scouter. He wished his team was here with him. He didn’t like doing solo operations. But King Vegeta had ordered him. And he was a low-class Saiyan. He couldn’t refuse.
He stepped out into the rain, looking for the three Saiyan boys. He had been ordered to help them clear the planet. Evidently they were so weak it required three babies (which was an exceptionally rare and high number to send to a single planet). That had been years ago. Somehow they had survived. Somehow they had managed to not kill everything on this forsaken rock. Now, he was going to teach them how to kill. Bardock was a low-class Saiyan, just like these three. He wouldn’t tell them that. For once in his life, he would have some fresh faces thinking better of him.
Bardock found a particularly long blade of grass and snatched it up with quick fingers. Placing it between his teeth, he sat on a rock, and began thinking of the quickest way he could teach the kids. The quicker he did, the quicker he could go back to doing what he loved best; clearing out planets with the rest of his team. Eventually, he found a small town with his scouter that would be perfect to test the boys’ skills.
Teaching wasn’t Bardock’s strong point. Hell, before today, he had never even thought he would be in this situation. So his method of teaching was simple; find a small, manageable group of natives, and see if the kids could kill them. And so he did. The small town housed no more than thirty readable power levels, and each being’s reading was no higher than 15.
The boys, who were probably no more than six or seven, could barely make even basic ki blasts. Their pitiful attempts could only do so much as to catch a few houses on fire, and were much too inaccurate to actually hit anything moving. As they set fire to the buildings, the natives suddenly appeared in a desperate attempt to defend their homes. Bardock sat on a rock with his nice bit of grass and watched. He watched as the purple, furry natives charged en masse and overwhelmed the boys. The Saiyans managed to kill a few of them – especially the Saiyan with long, spikey hair – but overall, they lacked the power to defeat their foes. Bardock growled again. It was pathetic. By this age, they should have mastered ki blasts, and started using basic tactics. All Saiyans were taught from birth their language, their mission, and how to be successful from the instructions left in their pods. Bardock himself had to do this as a kid, and he didn’t have two others for company. Clearly, these three hadn't listened to any of their instructions. In fact, Bardock was convinced they hadn’t ever trained. Their puny power levels of 50 apiece were testament to that.
“Enough!” Bardock yelled, standing up from the rock.
He strode forward, calmly, even as the three boys continued to get mercilessly pummeled. As he did, he started forming a blue energy ball in his hand. As he got to where the Saiyan boys and natives fought, he raised his arm, and prepared to unleash the blast. Even as he did, he noticed one of the Saiyan boys, the one who had extremely long, spikey hair, shoot up from the pile. The boy punched about wildly, taking some natives by surprise, and caved in a couple skulls before being overwhelmed again. As he went under, the boy looked back to Bardock, with as much a face pleading for help as one thirsting for compliments. Bardock laughed at the absurdity. Nothing that boy had ever done was worthy of congratulations. What did the kid think? That he was his father? That he was supposed to jump for joy at any sign of the little Saiyan doing something? No. He would never do that. He was just their teachers. He did have a son (whose name he had already forgotten), but any one of these weaklings couldn’t be it.
Bardock threw the ball, and incinerated all the purple aliens.
Following the disastrous event, Bardock came to the realization that none of the three Saiyans had any inclination towards fighting. They had neither form, nor power, and could barely grasp the importance of what their mission was. He quickly realized, after a few more tests with some small towns, that it would take months, perhaps years to properly train the boys into being able to clear the planet. That was time he simply did not have. So, after about the third day of trekking through mud and rain, and getting tired of chewing grass, Bardock made a decision: he would clear the planet for them.
He didn’t care about the children at all. They were simply an obstacle before getting back to his team. He told them after another rough failure in which the long-haired boy had again tried to appease Bardock that it just wasn’t working. Telling them to return to their bunker, he set off to clear the planet himself. It was no problem, for he had a power level of over 2000. He wouldn’t even need to transform.
It took Bardock about a day to clear the planet. Once he had done so, he returned to the boys’ bunker to find his pod. He made them line up, and tell him their names. Once they did, he could type it into his scouter, and mark the mission as a success. Then he would be rid of them. Who knows, maybe they could go back to Planet Vegeta and enlist into one of the military academies. Maybe they could learn how to fight, then. Bardock sure as hell wouldn’t be teaching them.
“Legumie, sir” the first one said.
The second followed with a low voice, “Cilantio!”
And then Bardock turned to the third. The little boy with the long hair seemed to lose his voice as Bardock turned his attention to him.
“What’s your name? Come on, damnit!,” Bardock barked impatiently.
“Uh… I-I-I’m-m Raditz, da-… I mean, sir.”
“All right then. If anyone asks, you cleared the planet yourself. Okay?” Bardock said.
“Yes sir,” they all replied.
Bardock nodded, and explained he had more important places to be. Finding his pod, he jumped in it, and started it up. Briefly, he reminded the kids that they also could leave (which, he had surmised, they likely would not have without his telling them). Then, he closed his door, and took off with all his speed. It was in but a moment that his pod reached the sky and became a dot too small to properly see.
The first two Saiyan boys began animated talks of what their home planet must be like, now that they were allowed to return. Speculation turned rampant and ultimately irrelevant as they began packing up. Away from them, the last boy, the one with the long hair stood in the clearing next to the pods. He had watched Bardock’s pod go until long after he could no longer see it. Only when the other two hounded him to get in his pod (so as to not be left behind) did he abandon his position. He agreed, and meekly jumped into his pod. He sighed.
As he sat back in the seat, and felt the hum of the machine, as it slowly lifted from the ground, his eyes focused on something in the corner of his pod. It was a picture of a Saiyan – well, not just any Saiyan. It was a picture of Bardock. And below it, on the computer screen, were the words “Your Father, Bardock”.
Raditz stared at that picture. He stared for as long as he could remain awake. The only thing he could think of was how much a disappointment he had been. How weak he had been. His father probably didn’t even know who he was; that Raditz was his son. And he would probably never see his father again to tell him properly. He had blown it earlier. But maybe it was better if his father didn’t know. That way, his dad wouldn’t have to live with the embarrassment that his son was worthless; that his son would never be as good as him.
He closed his eyes.
- The original description for the Bardock story was "8. Separator - bardock story involving him meeting his son raditz and fighting alongside him without realizing who he is, but raditz knows (and is unable to prove himself)".
- This story is named separator because Raditz shyness and lack of power separated him completely from his father.
- Despite Bardock being one of my favorite characters, this was the first time I had ever written for him.
- Bardock's affinity towards chewing grass is taken from that mannerism that he has in the Bardock Special.
- Legumie and Cilantio were the names of the made up Saiyan boys. I simply looked up a vegetable list online and picked two which have not been used before. It was to my horror, later, when I realized ss11 had a character named Future Legume.
- Raditz' inability to stay awake at the end was reference to me also being unable to stay awake when I was nearing the end of writing this story.
- The first and last sentences were stylistically bookends, though their context is almost opposite of one another.
Separator was a very strong story, and one of the most well-written ones in the Brady Patrick era. The first part from Bardock's point of view is amongst my favorite things I have written. Even reading back to do this commentary, I was quite happy with how in character Bardock and Raditz were. It was really pleasurable to read them acting like they would. I think the fact that this story doesn't focus on the fighting, but more on the varying emotions of each individual is really good. With Bardock, he is very selfish, and just wants to get back to his friends. Despite the selfishness, it is something that everyone can sympathize with, because who wants to be somewhere that sucks, alone, and bored? No one; that's who. And Raditz is in a pathetic situation that just makes one feel sorry for him – which is impossible in his anime/manga appearance. Giving both characters additional background and character development is always fun for me to do. Anyway, my favorite part of this story is that the first and last sentences are the same, but are said in extremely different circumstances. I think that is very clever. I would give Separator an A.
<---- Part 17
Part 19 ---->