Endless Path : Infinite Cosmos - Chapter 2180

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Chapter 2180: Bitter Truths

Curious to see how much Goku could fit into his remarkably small body, Vahn cooked up a feast fit for at least fifteen people. In spite of this, the young Saiyan kept gorging down food as if he were a garbage chute, his body metabolizing it almost instantly before converting it into trace amounts of Ki...

Though Vahn was amused by Goku's ability to put down food, the only thing preventing Bulma from losing her appetite was the phantasmal quality of even the most casual dishes he prepared.

"This is really good, Vahn. You should come back with me when I return to West City. I can help Sarina and Goku enroll in school while you work off their tuition as my personal chef."

Resisting the urge to roll his eyes, Vahn skillfully flipped a line of thinly cut Tyrannosaurus Tail Steak as he replied, "There are some things money can't buy, Ms. Briefs. I believe your journey to discover the Dragon Balls is proof enough of that..."

Adopting an annoyed expression, Bulma huffed before scarfing down half her plate and saying, "If I wanted to, I could easily purchase what I'm looking for. It's just, even if I did, I wouldn't be happy..."

Asking in Vahn's stead, Sarina chimed in to inquire, "What, exactly, are you planning to wish for? I'm curious."

Blushing in embarrassment, Bulma began to fiddle around with the food on her plate as she meekly replied, "I want to wish for the perfect boyfriend..."

Though she already knew about Bulma's wish after watching Dragon Ball, Sarina couldn't restrain an awkward smile. After all, there were innumerable flaws with such a wish. After all, the definition of a perfect boyfriend would vary from person to person, and, unless they constantly adapted to match your wants and needs in any given situation, could they be called perfect?

Realizing that Vahn could probably do exactly that, a soft chuckle escaped Sarina's throat. Bulma, assuming Sarina was laughing at her, immediately began to flare up. Fortunately, just as she was about to shout and ask what Sarina would wish for, Vahn joined them at the table, asking, "What are the two of you whispering about?"

Redirecting her ire towards Vahn, Bulma shouted, "It's none of your business, Buster! Didn't anyone ever teach you not to butt in when girls are having a private discussion!?"

Showing little regard for Bulma's words, Vahn maintained a relaxed smile as he looked down at Goku and asked, "Are you enjoying the food?"

Unable to talk due to the amount of food he had stuffed into his mouth, Goku just smiled up at Vahn with an expression reminiscent of a chipmunk.

Amused by the young Saiyan's antics, Vahn habitually extended his hand to pat the top of Goku's head before meeting Bulma's gaze out of the corner of his eye.

"There is no such thing as perfection. Even if there was, it could only exist for a single moment in time. The moment it becomes bound by the Laws of the World, it is no longer perfect. After all, the definition of perfection, much like life itself, is constantly shifting from one state to another. Unless it exists in a form that cannot be observed, perfection is a transient concept that simply can't exist in any meaningful capacity..."

Furrowing her brows, Bulma took a moment to reflect on Vahn's words. Not because she was in any way impacted by them but because she wanted to refute them. Before she could, Sarina interrupted her train of thought, saying, "You shouldn't get in the habit of arguing with Vahn. His Wisdom is far beyond your ability to comprehend. I'm not saying you can't question him. Just don't go into things assuming you're right. Trust me, when it comes to knowledge, there is little Vahn doesn't know and nothing he can't know..."

Undaunted by Sarina's words, a challenging look flashed across Bulma's face as she remarked, "Oh, is that so? Sounds to me like this guy might have brainwashed you with his handsome appearance and delicious food..."

Leaning forward, Vahn supported his head with the knuckles of his left hand as he mused, "Thanks for the compliments..."

Snorting through her nose, Bulma pursed her lips before mirroring Vahn's actions. Instead of one hand, however, she framed her face with both palms as she asked, "So? How does this work? Are you some kind of Psychic or..."

Seeing Vahn casually levitate a few trays with a simple raise of his right index finger, the words at the tip of Bulma's tongue promptly faded into the void.

Dismissing the possibility magnets were at play, largely due to the fact the plates were ceramic and there were several other metal objects present, Bulma's intrigue was piqued as she asked, "What am I thinking right this instant?"

Disguising his annoyance with a light chuckle, Vahn manifested a cup of coffee for himself before saying, "I have a policy against prying into other people's thoughts. Can I? Certainly. Do you truly want me to? No. After all, even if they find it entertaining in the beginning, the novelty wears off quite quickly. Ask yourself this, Ms. Briefs. Would you ever be able to sleep comfortably if you knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, there were people in this world who knew the inner workings of your mind even better than yourself...?"

Paling at the thought, Bulma found herself swallowing a knot that had formed in her throat. Then, just as she was thinking about asking Vahn for something to drink, the cogs in her mind ground to a stop when he manifested a cup of tea for her. If it was any normal tea, she would have thought he had primed her by pulling out a cup of coffee. Instead, the tea in the cup was her favorite...

"Now, how about we move on to the questions you really want answers to? So long as it doesn't invade the privacy of another, I don't mind sharing..."

Feeling far more nervous than before, Bulma attempted to calm herself by positing that Vahn had simply investigated her. This was a terrifying notion in and of itself, but, compared to the possibility that there were people who knew her every thought, it was significantly less scary...

Thinking he may have pushed her a little too hard, Vahn attempted to allay Bulma's concerns by saying, "Relax. As I stated previously, I have a policy against prying into a person's thoughts and memories. I also don't share private information about people without their consent, so, even if I were aware of your secrets, there is no chance of them getting out."

Though she did calm down a little, Bulma wasn't particularly comforted by Vahn's words. She was now firmly convinced that there was at least a possibility that there were people in this world that 'could' read her thoughts. At the same time, however, she was fascinated by the notion that there were still forces in the Universe she had yet to fully comprehend...

Organizing her thoughts, Bulma decided to put Vahn's knowledge to the test, asking, "If you're so knowledgeable, why did you need to inspect my Dragon Radar before being able to sense them? Shouldn't you just know the location of the Dragon Balls?"

Surprised by the remarkably to the point question, the corners of Vahn's smile curled upward as he answered, "There is a significant difference between knowing the location of something and being able to sense it. For example, you undoubtedly know the location of your own house, correct? Can you sense it...?"

Realizing the flaw in her question, a frown developed across Bulma's face as she quickly rephrased things, asking, "Where are the rest of the Dragon Balls located? Is there anything I need to be wary of when searching for them?"

Stroking his non-existent beard, Vahn took a moment to organize his thoughts before musing, "This is dangerously close to invading the privacy of others. Fortunately for you, three of the Dragon Balls are currently regarded as little more than trinkets. Their owners could also use some help so there is a decently high probability you will be able to obtain them after rendering your assistance..."

Though he was half-tempted to just steal Emperor Pilaf's Dragon Ball, Vahn knew the petite, imp-like man wasn't truly as evil as he appeared. He had always been more of a comic relief character than an actual villain, and, depending on the timeline, he even redeemed himself by sacrificing his life to protect his vassals/friends/caretakers, Mai and Shu.

"Let's see...the three-star Dragon Ball is in the possession of the Turtle Hermit, Master Roshi. As for the six and seven-star balls, the first is located in a village being terrorized by a pig demon with the ability to shapeshift. The second is located within the treasury of the Ox-King on Mount Frypan. So long as you can save the Village of Aru and extinguish the inextinguishable flames of Mount Frypan, the six and seven-star Dragon Balls are as good as yours. As for the one-star Dragon Ball...well, that depends on your fate..."

Shivering at the mention of fate, Bulma decided to skip asking about the specifics of the first three Dragon Balls and instead asked the question at the forefront of her mind, specifically, "Are you able to teleport or summon the other Dragon Balls?"

As the Dragon Balls basically became resurrection fodder after the events of the Red Ribbon Army, a soft chuckle emanated from Vahn's throat before he went on to answer, "Indeed."

Demonstrating his point, Vahn briefly borrowed the seven-star Dragon Ball from Mount Frypan. The Ox-King and his daughter were currently trapped outside their palace so it wasn't like he was going to miss it.

Seeing the six-star Dragon Ball in Vahn's hand, the pupils of Bulma's sapphirine eyes contracted to points as she asked, "Are...are you the Guardian God of this planet...?"

Unable to contain himself, a guffaw-like laugh emanated from Vahn's throat before he promptly got it under control. Then, with a remarkably amused smile on his face, he answered, "No. That is a title that belongs to Kami. If you travel to the Sacred Grounds guarded by the Karinga Tribe, you'll find a tower that appears to extend to the Heavens. Those who climb said Tower without the aid of tools will have the opportunity to meet the Immortal Sage, Korin the Wise. From there, you need a special key to be able to ascend to Kami's Lookout, a special platform that exists between the fabric of reality and the Heavenly Realm. It is there you will find the Guardian God of this world..."

Though she was left with even more questions after Vahn's explanation, Bulma decided to focus on the most important matter at hand, asking, "I'm guessing you're not going to just hand that Dragon Ball over, are you?"

Returning the aforementioned ball to its previous position, another chuckle emanated from Vahn's throat as he teased, "You're a fast learner. It's no wonder you were able to create something as truly extraordinary as a radar designed to track a specific form of magical energy. I'm looking forward to seeing how you use that remarkable intelligence of yours to solve the problems of people in need."

Clicking her tongue, Bulma had to take a deep breath to suppress the urge to lambast Vahn for his blatant teasing. If he would just bring the Dragon Balls directly to her, she could make her wish and be home by sunrise. Instead, he was insisting she go on a perilous journey that spanned days, if not weeks. Sure, she may have been the one to set out on this journey, but, as a man, shouldn't he feel some form of obligation towards her, a beautiful woman?

("Chivalry really is dead...")

With that thought now firmly cemented in her mind, Bulma began picking at her food like an ill-tempered child. The only difference was that she would take a bite every now and again, as, despite being on a diet, she simply couldn't resist the food Vahn had prepared...

...

..

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(A/N: Alternate Titles: 'There are few things more terrifying than a delusional genius...','Vahn is like a ninehead...','Shenron is going to be sweating when he meets Vahn for the first time xD...')

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