Fan Fic: Savior Of Demons
Savior of Demons Story Cover. May be a spoiler.Savior of Demons
is a fanfic written for Dragon Ball Z
by Ryu no Ohi (also known as Roketto
). The story is a different take on Frieza and King Kold's attack on Earth. With no Trunks to appear and destroy them, it falls to Goku to stop the two villains, and Frieza's life takes a very different turn as Goku doesn't kill him, and the tyrant tries to understand just why Goku would spare him.
The fanfic is very well written, taking an inside look into how Frieza himself thinks and acts with heavy emphasis on psychology and xenobiological speculation.
Savior of Demons provides examples of the following tropes:
- Abusive Parents: After Chapter 3, it's obvious that Kold, at least, is one.
- Agony Beam: The electrocution fail-safe in Frieza's cyborg body.
- Aggressive Categorism: From Chapter 3:
Goku: "It's simple, Frieza. I don't like to see anyone, regardless of who they are, getting hurt. Not even someone like you. If you can't fight back, well, fighting's no fun." He shrugged.
- Alternate Universe Fic
- Animal Metaphor: Frieza always seems to be described as growling, hissing, baring his teeth, and so forth to underline how inhuman his nature is.
- Artificial Limbs: Frieza starts out the story, as in canon, with a mostly cybernetic body.
- Ax-Crazy: Frieza most definitely gives off this vibe, what with his Hallucinations and paranoia.
- Bad Dreams: Goku has some very plot-important visions/dreams in Chapter 4. Turns out, they were imparted on him by the Yardrats.
- Later, Frieza suffers some terrifying nightmares as well.
- Big Damn Heroes: Goku, naturally.
- Big "NO!": Shouted by Frieza, upon witnessing Goku kill his father.
- Blinded by the Light: Naturally, the Taiyouken is utilized by the heroes.
- Blood Knight: All Saiyans to an extent, but especially Goku, since he would rather fight an opponent at their best rather than just kill them while he has the chance. Subverted in that he does know where to draw the line, and kills Kold before he can finish transforming.
- Bloodier and Gorier: Author Roketto promises that this story will explore what would actually happen in the epic, super-powered struggles seen so often in DBZ, if martial artists could punch out small planetoids.
- Breaking Bad News Gently: Bulma ends up being the one to inform Frieza that his father was killed.
- Break the Haughty: Frieza has been put through the ringer so far, and his pride has been utterly shattered.
- Category Traitor: It's fair to assume that after he angrily stormed off, Vegeta now thinks of Goku as this.
- Chase Fight: Goku tries to reach King Kold, who is transforming, but is blocked by Frieza...his solution is to call in his friends to hold Frieza off, resulting in a five-on-one chase fight between Piccolo, Vegeta, Gohan, Krillin, and Tenshinhan and Frieza.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: As if getting his tail kicked (again) by a Super Saiyan wasn't enough, Frieza is also on the receiving end of this...from his own father.
- Combat Breakdown: As the fight drags on, Frieza goes from perfectly fine, to having his arm broken, to being too tired to dodge ki blasts, to not being able to stand, and finally can't even muster the strength to attack Goku conventionally.
- Conditioned to Accept Horror: Piccolo shows shades of this while watching Frieza getting tortured, but Vegeta seems to be the poster-child for it.
- Cornered Rattle Snake: Frieza, quite literally.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Surprisingly averted. Despite presuming they wouldn't be able to fight him, the Z Fighters manage to last much longer than expected due to Frieza's underestimating them and his own mechanical weaknesses.
- Dark Lord on Life Support: Goku finds Frieza in a truly pitiable condition on his father's ship, and wonders how he's even alive at this point.
- Deadly Disc: The Kienzan, of course. Notably, Kold assumes Krillin is 'too primitive' to actually use the technique.
- Deadly Dodging: In a truly epic show of skill, Tenshinhan fights Frieza one-on-one to stall him using Crane Style Kung Fu to gradually whittle down his endurance, while keeping him angry enough to forget that he's supposed to be stopping Goku.
- Death Glare: Part of the terror Frieza experiences when facing Goku is his Super Saiyan eyes, which seriously freak the Arcosian out.
- In addition, Frieza himself is fond of using this against everyone, including Goku (unsuccessfully) in Chapter 5.
- Death Is Cheap: Bulma uses this as an excuse to save Frieza, saying that if he kills her, the Dragonballs will bring her back.
- Defeat Means Friendship: Defied so far by Frieza.
- Defiant to the End: Frieza puts up a truly commendable fight against Goku, even going so far as to bite him as a last act of defiance.
- Delaying Action: What the Z Fighters were doing to buy time for Goku to arrive, and later to keep Frieza away from Goku. Special mention to Tenshinhan, who does this to Frieza all on his own by redirecting his attacks as though he were an angry bull.
- Destination Defenestration: Frieza opts to go through a window during his first night as a "captive", prompting Goku to go out to retrieve him.
- Determinator: Frieza. Where to start? From his journeying to Earth in the first place for revenge, to his dogged resolve to defeat Goku even if it destroys him, he shows abnormal amounts of determination. Even Goku comments on it.
- Do Not Go Gentle: Even after being beaten, losing most of his cyborg limbs' functions, and being electrocuted, does Frieza finally give up? Not a chance.
- Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Bulma has no problem taking Frieza down a notch, but even she reflects that it's not such a great idea when Goku isn't standing right there monitoring him.
- Don't Make Me Destroy You: Goku tries to convince Frieza to just admit defeat and leave Earth throughout their entire fight.
- Driven to Madness: Frieza...and surprisingly, Goku's the one doing it, though his Trickster Mentor Ramein is behind it all.
- Electric Torture: King Kold's backup plan in case Frieza manages to kill him or someone else does, to push Frieza to fight said enemy and stop the pain.
- Emotional Torque: Chapter 3 hit readers very hard, even if before they'd felt no sympathy for Frieza.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Frieza assumes Goku spared him so he could be his slave, rather than because he's merciful, something Frieza has little understanding of. Justified, however, in that would be the only reason 'most' Saiyans would spare him.
- Extreme Melee Revenge: After his father is killed, Frieza goes into an Unstoppable Rage, wanting to do nothing less than "to tear apart the body with his bare hands into smaller and smaller pieces until it ceased to resemble what he loathed so much".
- Eye Scream: The description of Frieza while he's recovering post-Namek includes this, along with other Squick-y details.
- Fantastic Racism: Frieza and Kold have this toward pretty much any other species they see, considering them all to be inferior.
- Forgiveness: A big theme of SoD.
- Fish out of Water: The best way to describe Frieza's initial introduction/reaction to Capsule Corp. and all of Goku's friends. He misinterprets everything as a thinly veiled threat, or an attempt to manipulate him.
- For Want of a Nail: Many things are subtly different from canon, aside from Goku showing up instead of Trunks, (which would have happened without time travel.) such as Kold being killed first, or Goku learning Shunkan Idou from someone else.
- Fun with Acronyms: When Bulma's mind wanders during an Internal Monologue to capsules, she reflects on how "coffin capsules" are more properly called "Suspended Organic Material (A-Type)", or S.O.M.A. capsules.
- Gadgeteer Genius: Bulma, of course, who stops Frieza's shock mechanism.
- Later on in Chapter 5, she proves she isn't quite infallible when she accidentally almost kills Frieza while trying to fix his arm. Frieza mentally Lampshades that a weak human might end up killing him out of incompetence.
- Game-Breaking Injury: Frieza can't even move after repeated shocks. Earlier, Yamcha suffers a quick defeat after Frieza breaks his arm.
- Gaslighting: Goku "haunting" Frieza in Chapter 4, including destroying evidence of his presence, making Frieza doubt himself even further.
- Genocide Backfire: Kold Lampshades the irony that of all the Saiyans Frieza didn't kill, it had to be the two strongest and most troublesome.
- Genre Savvy: Kold knows transforming isn't a free action, so he gets Frieza to distract Goku for him.
- Graying Morality: Goku has a bit of a moral crisis when it comes to killing Frieza, which in Chapter 4 is given some perspective.
- Grievous Harm with a Body: Frieza uses Vegeta as a bludgeon to take Gohan out of the fight momentarily.
- Half the Man He Used to Be: Frieza, post-Namek.
- Hallucinations: Really terrifying, Super-Saiyan-taunting-him hallucinations, in Frieza's case. And it turns out in Chapter 4 that not ALL of the hallucinations were fake.
- Harmless Electrocution: Strongly averted.
- Have You Tried Not Being a Monster?: Goku, in trying to understand why Frieza is the way he is, asks him why he couldn't just change the rules - after all, he's so strong, nobody could tell him no, right? Frieza tells him that it would be suicidal, even for him, suggesting that he's not the biggest fish in the galactic pond, at least in terms of influence.
- Heart in the Wrong Place: When Bulma does some emergency triage/"troubleshooting" on Frieza, it describes her opening a panel on the right side of his chest.
- Hologram: King Kold briefly appears as one, to "motivate" Frieza.
- Honor-Related Abuse: Can't kill your enemy, Frieza? King Kold will give you two options: beg for death from your hated enemy, or suffer a long, drawn-out death. Your choice.
- Horn Attack: King Kold attempts this on Goku, but thanks to some quick thinking, he avoids getting Impaled with Extreme Prejudice.
- How the Mighty Have Fallen: Oh, how they have...
- Humans Through Alien Eyes: With Frieza, this naturally leads to observations of how primitive, backward, and strange they are.
- I Can Still Fight: Let's see, Frieza has been tenderized by a Super Saiyan, had his cybernetic arm broken to the point of uselessness, is suffering a mental breakdown, and was fried nearly to death, will he give up the ghost and surrender? Not as long as he can crawl.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: The chapter titles are somewhat uncommon words that relate to the content of the chapter. For example, Chapter 1: Revenants, refers to both Frieza and Goku returning from presumed death or a long absence.
- If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him: The reason Bulma stops Goku from finishing off Frieza.
- Imaginary Enemy: Played with and averted, as seen from Frieza's ordeal on his father's ship, while trying to convince the doctors that he isn't crazy.
- I'm Not Hungry: Frieza outright refuses to eat, but the twist is that he's not just doing it out of defiance, he also can't eat anything due to his mechanical body.
- It Was Here, I Swear: Said almost word-for-word by Frieza as he desperately tries to convince one unlucky doctor (and himself) that he isn't going insane, seeing the Super Saiyan appearing and disappearing on the ship.
- Keeping the Enemy Close: What Goku plans to do with Frieza.
- Kick the Dog: Kold orchestrating Frieza's torture, after his own death.
- Kirk Summation: Goku tries, without success, to tell Frieza why what he's doing is wrong and evil.
- Lack of Empathy: Frieza can't quite understand the concept of other sentient beings' lives being important.
- Laughing Mad: Frieza is described as laughing madly while Strapped to an Operating Table at some points in Chapter 4, which is understandable, considering how he's going crazy and nobody believes him.
- Last Stand: A non-fatal version, Frieza cowers in a hole and finally bites Goku, having no other options.
- Lightning Bruiser: King Kold, as observed when Goku realizes that his getting hit by him earlier wasn't because he wasn't paying attention.
- Made a Slave: Frieza is absolutely petrified at the thought of being defeated by a Saiyan for this reason.
- Madness Mantra: One of the most heart-wrenching aspects of Chapter 3.
Frieza: "I...won't...beg... Never... I'll...n-never beg..!"
- Man Bites Man: Used simultaneously humorously as well as seriously, plus as a Continuity Nod callback to when Goku was in the position of biting Frieza's tail on Namek out of desperation.
- Mercy Kill: Goku almost delivers the final blow to Frieza, but Bulma stops him so that he doesn't compromise his morals.
- Might Makes Right: Frieza's thoughts in Chapter 1 sum his philosophy up nicely:
'Strength is the only thing that determines whether you live or die.' The Arcosian thought to himself. 'It doesn't matter if you're smart, or respected, or undeserving of punishment. Having superior might is the only way to survive.'
- Moment of Weakness: There have been many so far for Frieza, but his most violent reaction so far was to the humans, and Goku, witnessing him having a nightmare.
- Murder Is the Best Solution: Piccolo seems to think killing a currently defenseless Frieza is a better idea than waiting for him to regain his strength and kill Gohan and the others.
- Nausea Fuel: Most of Frieza's horrible torture falls under this for the readers. There are in-universe examples as well, such as the reaction Frieza has to seeing his father's corpse.
- And now in Chapter 5, we have actual nausea!
- Goku has to hold back feelings of nausea when observing Frieza's mangled body in the beginning of Chapter 4.
- Nightmare Sequence: Goku has one particularly jarring initial dream in Chapter 4 that kicks off a string of related dreams, which aren't nearly as terror-inducing.
- Frieza also seems to be suffering from nightmares, which he unsuccessfully tries to hide.
- No Medication for Me: Frieza decides to go off his anti-psychotics, because they make him feel dull. They also weren't helping, because contrary to what the doctors thought, his "ghosts" aren't all in his head.
- No Sell: Kold and Goku go back and forth doing this to each other.
- Not Quite Dead: After all he's been through, Goku is astounded that Frieza's even still breathing at the end of Chapter 3.
- Numerological Motif: The number 49 on the capsule Bulma gives Frieza, containing King Kold's body - it stands for "painful death".
- Ordered Apology: Not quite this trope, but Goku does force Frieza to say "thank you" to Bulma after she tries to repair his arm. He says the words, but nobody is fooled into thinking he means it - least of all because he had a valid reason to not be grateful (specifically, because Bulma almost exsanguinated him by mistake).
- Parrot Expo-what?: Goku, in Chapter 6, with the word "fumigate".
- Poisonous Person: Chapter 5 reveals that all Arcosians have a very mild venom that only activates when they're terrified, which becomes a plot point because it paralyzes Goku's right hand...meaning that he can't use Shunkan Idou until it's treated.
- Pride Before a Fall: King Kold takes a very, very long fall after assuming his enemy was too far away to deal him any damage.
- Psycho Electro: Frieza shows the ability to control his electric aura, to an extent, when he uses it to torture Vegeta.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: A few so far in the story. Hilariously, Vegeta manages to ignore a short one obviously directed at him by Krillin.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: All Arcosians have varying shades of red eye coloration.
- Sadistic Choice: Goku has to choose whether to kill Frieza, or stand there and watch him continue to be shocked until he eventually dies. Bulma helps him avert his Moral Dilemma.
- Save the Villain: Goku has the motivation, the will, and the power to actually do this, at least in Frieza's case.
- Self Destructive Charge: Frieza doesn't care that he's got five-minute intervals to attack, between which he becomes an impromptu lightning rod, he just wants to kill Goku.
- Shout-Out: There are a few references to Honor Trip, Bringer of Death, and Piccolo's Choice in the first chapter.
- Shown Their Work: Since the author is a real-life martial artist, all those stunning fight scenes are plausible and use real techniques, barring the more fantastic aspects of Ki Attacks.
- Word of God states that she rarely scripts fight scenes fully - they just flow with a given character's most plausible reaction to an attack.
- Strapped to an Operating Table: Frieza, in Chapter 4, during his extensive recovery. Naturally, this means he can't get away when Goku torments him with his Super Saiyan transformation.
- Even before Goku showed up, he was being restrained, probably for reacting very violently to whatever the doctors did to reconstruct his body.
- Stray Shots Strike Nothing: Averted - King Kold doesn't initially join the fight because he's not only content to watch his son battle the humans, but he's also making sure that any stray ki blasts don't render their ship incapable of flight. Later on, this comes back to bite him (and Frieza by extent) when the attack that kills him also punches a hole in the ship.
- Suddenly Shouting: Frieza in Chapter 1, as he tortures Gohan, goes from a creepily calm tone of voice to this.
- Sympathetic P.O.V.: The narrative switches between the heroes and the villains, Frieza in particular, so the shades of morality get muddier and muddier as you see everyone's perspectives.
- Sympathy for the Devil: In spades.
- Thanatos Gambit: Used with horrifying results by King Kold.
- Thousand-Yard Stare: Frieza will suddenly get these when he thinking he's seeing the Super Saiyan (before Goku actually shows up).
- He's also got Dull Eyes of Unhappiness and a generally blank expression when he's been drugged in response to Kold's doctors thinking he was psychotic.
- Tragic Villain: Frieza's already shaping up to be framed as one.
- Transformation Is a Free Action: Averted, Goku tries to stop Kold every time he attempts to transform.
- Trauma Conga Line: Poor Frieza. defeated by a Super Saiyan, watched his father die, was posthumously betrayed by said father, got zapped nearly to death, fled from his enemies, ended up in a hole, hiding, and resorted to biting Goku just to fight back. He reflects on how humiliating it all is.
- Chapter 4 extends the Trauma Conga Line even further back, with Frieza outright saying that he has been humiliated by the Super Saiyan who nobody else on the ship thinks is real.
- Trauma-Induced Amnesia: Frieza can't remember what happened after Goku and co. saved him from being electrocuted.
- Troubled Fetal Position: This is how Goku finds Frieza in his guest room, after being woken up by the Arcosian's screaming during his nightmare.
- Unstoppable Rage: Gohan, after seeing Piccolo hurt grievously. Frieza also gets a mention for his assault on Goku after he watched him kill his father.
- Viewers Are Geniuses: Between the chapter names and the vocabulary used outside of actual character dialogue, casual viewers might either be intimidated, or at least have to reach for a dictionary. The word hamartia pops up quite often.
- Villainous Breakdown: Frieza, in part due to his enormous hatred for Goku, and due to hallucinations he's suffering from.
- Villainous Valor: Frieza keeps fighting, even when it's clear he has absolutely no chance of winning.
- Violence Is Disturbing: Bulma seems the most disturbed, besides Goku, at the torture Frieza's subjected to. Vegeta nonchalantly responds that although this is a bit more creative than what he's used to seeing, it's pretty common in a general sense.
- Waking Up Elsewhere: Frieza, after he blacks out, wakes up on Bulma's plane, considerably disoriented. He also doesn't remember what happened after he saw his father's body.
- We Can Rebuild Him: Without his cybernetic body, Frieza would not have survived Namek blowing up with him still on it.
- "Well Done, Son" Guy: Frieza really wants his father to be proud of him.
- Who Needs Their Whole Body?: Apparently, even Frieza does, as without it, not even his Villainous Willpower can keep him going.
- Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises: Since most of his fight is spent in utter panic and/or mental turmoil, Frieza has these by default. It's especially apparent when he is being electrocuted.
- Worthy Opponent: Frieza seems to see Goku as this to some degree even before he became a Super Saiyan, seeing as he actually remembered his name.
- You Can Barely Stand: Said almost word-for-word by Goku, to Frieza.
- You Killed My Father: This is likely to be a sticking point for Frieza when it comes to Goku extending the proverbial olive branch.