CHAPTER FOURTY-THREE: ZARBON VS. ZANGYA

 

 

 

            Zangya turned away from the smoking remains of Puipui and back to Babidi's ship to at least try to force the wizard to break whatever spell he had placed on Zarbon.

            She stopped moving when she saw her former comrade standing in the clearing, arms folded, his cape blowing in the wind.

            Majin Zarbon flicked his head, pushing his braid behind his back from where it was resting on his shoulder, and shot her a smile that was nearly as cruel as one of Bojack's. Zangya shuddered.

            "Are you ready?" he said as he checked his position on the sandy ground. "I am."

            They stood facing each other, silently for a while.

            "Zarbon, I know you can hear me," Zangya started, "Whatever Babidi did to you, I know you can fight it! You're stronger than that."

            Majin Zarbon spit. "Oh, really? And what if I told you that I liked it?"

            She froze in place.

            "I don't care about what the old man has me do. When I'm like this I have no real weaknesses. Before, all that you had to do to stop me was put someone I cared about in danger. now, I no longer care. I have no scruples, that would stop me from doing what I would otherwise enjoy. Like you."

            Zangya started at that last comment. "W-what?" she stammered.

            "You heard me. You. Surely you must know what kind of a beautiful woman you are, Zangya."

            Zangya could barely believe what he was saying, although it made perfect sense.

            "I never touched you because I was faithful to Salad, and because I respected you. As I said earlier, I have no scruples, no conscience. I can do whatever I want now."

            Zangya started to back away, then something inside of her snapped. This was not Zarbon. No! He would never want to be this kind of... monster.

            Letting out some sort of enraged yell, Zangya barreled straight into Zarbon and knocked him off his feet. She grabbed him and threw him into Babidi's ship.

            She started going forward again, but then stopped, coming very close to tears.

            Zarbon was really her only real friend, and if this really was how he felt about her... their friendship could not go on. She could not have another man in her life in that way for any reason, even if they meant well. Not after what Bojack had done to her. Never again.

            She shook it off and straightened up. now was not the time to think about these things.

            Majin Zarbon, transformed, burst out of Babidi's ship, creating another hole in it, growling like a wild animal.

            "BITCH!!!" he yelled, "I'll kill you for that! You put dirt on me! No one puts dirt on me. NO ONE!"

            He charged at her, grabbed her, and headbutted her several times. Zarbon slammed her to the ground.

            He then picked her up by her left arm and broke it. He licked his lips at the celery-snapping sound that it made, along with her scream of agony.

            Zarbon pulled his right arm back, prepared to blow a hole through her, when she twisted somewhat in his grip, and used her right hand to blast him in the face.

            Zarbon sprawled back as Zangya flip-kicked him in the chin and kneed him in the gut as hard as she could, breaking his armour.

            He coughed up a generous amount of blood on the shoulder of her blouse.

            Zangya tried to escape his grip when Zarbon recovered and squeezed into her broken left arm.

            She stopped completely with the pain, and started to collapse.

            "Oh, I'm sorry, was that your bad arm?" he said in a cruel tone, then squeezed it some more.

            "I certainly hope it doesn't make fucking you any harder."

            Zangya stiffened at that remark and, mindless of the pain, charged up her ki as far as it would go.

            "Stop saying that, you... you... ANIMAL!" she shouted as she brought her other arm up in a punch at Zarbon's face.

            He caught her fist and smiled.

            "You're really desperate, aren't you?" he commented. Zangya brought her right leg up in a kick so high that it almost could have been called a split. Her foot connected with Zarbon's chin and broke something, sending him sprawling back in pain, losing his grip on her.

            "Why, you motherfucking BITCH! You-" But then he stopped as he realized that he couldn't move.

            Zangya was extending one arm out, putting all the power she had into it, and making a little telekinetic net not unlike the ones used by Bojack's underlings.

            Majin Zarbon just stared in shock.

            "What... you can't do this!"

            "Why not?" she said, "Bujin taught it to all of us just fine." What she didn't say was how much trouble she had making a net like that with both hands, never mind only one. In no time at all Zarbon would be able to break free from that little ki-based trap, and then Kami help her if things were not resolved by then.

            Remembering one of the nuances of the net, Zangya mentally tied it off and left Zarbon there, bound in a little bit of ki.

            Realizing that now it would take even less effort for him to break through it, Zangya dashed toward Babidi's ship at full speed just as the wizard was exiting it to check up on the battle.

            Babidi Had just noticed that something was wrong when Zangya came barelling into him and started to literally pop him on the head, using her good arm.

            Babidi, who normally could throw up a good shield against such attacks, was too startled to do anything of the sort. He simply threw his bony arms up in a weak block. Zangya kept hitting him.

            "Let him go now, you bastard!" she shouted at Babidi, tears streaming down her face, as she kept hitting him.

            Babidi tried sneaking away, but eventually gave up when he saw that it was doing no good, and when he saw Zarbon apparently tied up back there (He didn't know that Zarbon could have easily gotten out). Babidi was, in fact, too confused to even try to make Zangya into a Majin.

            Finally, he shouted, "okay, okay! I'll do it! Just lay off me!!!" Zangya stopped hitting him, but before he could scamper away she picked him up by his collar.

            "Try anything and I'll kill you, sorcerer."

            Babidi nodded and pointed his fingers at Zarbon.

            "Return to normal," he said, with more than a hint of surrender in his voice. "PAPARAPA!" he finished, and at that moment Zarbon broke out of the net.

            He jumped up and charged at the two of them, but then suddenly lurched to a stop in mid air. He grasped his forehead and let out a loud scream of agony. The veins in his neck stood out like tree roots, vibrating with the simple force of his now-pounding heartbeat.

            He straightened up and let out another yell, then fell to the ground, gasping for breath and sweating. The M was gone from his forehead. The evil look was gone from his eyes. He was Zarbon again.

            Zanyga let out a relieved smile as Zarbon finally got up, then charged directly into Babidi and punched him across the face, breaking one of the wizard's teeth and knocking him unconscious.

            Zarbon looked at Zangya's arm and winced, then looked over at their saucerer ship.

            "Let's get out of here," he said.

            Zangya nodded.

            If either of them had known of the problems that Babidi was going to cause about eight years from then, they would have killed him on the spot and nuked the planet Zun.

            But, they didn't, and that is how things were to be.

 

 

***

 

 

            Zarbon and Zangya did not speak to each other in the ship.

            Zarbon noticed that the ship's power cells were still dangerously low, and that some repairs needed to be made, the training room being one of them, and landed on a nearby civilized planet.

            Zarbon broke the uneasy silence during dinner.

            "I just want you to know that what I said while under that monster's control was a lie."

            Zangya looked up from her plate at him. The regen tank had fixed her arm.

            "What?" she asked him.

            "What I... what he said about having feelings for you. It was a lie. All of it. I don't have any feelings for you besides friendship, and I never will. My heart belongs to Salad, and no one else. I respect you too much to think of you in that respect."

            Zangya nodded and went back to her food.

            She felt relieved.

 

 

***