Vegeta posing stoically, as usual.
Prince Vegeta

I will restore the glory of the Saiya-jin.

From: Dragonball Z (Akira Toriyama)

Nobility is a double-edged sword, capable of elevating an individual far above the hardships of everyday life and yet also able to weigh down a person with the responsibility for countless lives. Power, which may or may not accompany noble blood, is a tool that must be used sparingly and with great forethought, regardless of the wielder's presumably good intentions. Vegeta has grown to learn these lessons the hard way, after spending years under the tutelage of three very different leaders.

As a small child, Vegeta learned to be proud of his heritage and of his people, the Saiya-jin, from his father. Leader of a conquered warrior people, King Vegeta taught his son how to avoid defeat, even when presented with a superior military force. The arts of fighting and the science of strategy were what young Vegeta's mind absorbed, but he also took note of the way his father and their people were made to suffer pain, ridicule, and ultimately death at the whim of Lord Freeza, their overlord.

During his tenure as a general in Freeza's army, Vegeta took great pains to gain Freeza's trust and council, all while carefully watching for the opportunity to attack his father's butcher. In the fertile atmosphere of distrust and deceit of Freeza's court, Vegeta learned how to succeed through misdirection, misinformation, and manipulation. Even surrounded by his hand-picked and self-trained Saiyan elite troops, he was isolated by his fatalistic ambition to become strong enough to single-handedly avenge the dead Saiyan race.

Abruptly supplanted in his lifelong mission to destroy Freeza and to uphold the Saiyan legacy, Vegeta devoted his skill and energy to surpassing Earth's adopted Saiyan defender, Son Gokuu, nee Kakkarot. Gokuu's successful model of kindness, honesty, and self-sacrifice contradicted all that Vegeta had learned and observed over the years. Vegeta pushed his body and mind to increasing levels of spiritual strength and battled fearsome opponents from across space and time, but always fell just short of the standard set by Gokuu.

Posessed of a power greater than that described in his father's legends of the Super Saiyan, Vegeta could not achieve the seemingly effortless contentment enjoyed by Gokuu, a mere commoner. Even when gifted with an intelligent, beautiful lover and a strong, determined son, Vegeta dwelled upon the slights of the past and nearly allowed his arrogance to destroy his home and family. In the face of this final, absolute loss, the prince was forced to admit that their love had gnawed away at the emotional wall he had built to protect his heart. Acknowledging his own love for them in return finally permitted him to hope for the future and to achieve the solace he'd sought for so long.

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