It was still the day they had lunch together. Rather then go completely home, Goku's wife had decided to pay Mr. Hercule Satan another impromptu visit. There were certain things she needed to clarify with the blowhard, and she meant to do so without the intervention of anyone. Carrying her well stocked handbag Chichi wandered through the mall past a sporting goods store. Judging from the reporters jockeying for position she had hit jackpot.
"Time to move in," Chichi decided, striding confidently up. She pulled out an 8 by 10 glossy of Mr. Satan and shoved her way past the reporters.
"Excuse me, autograph hound coming through!" she said. At the table the World Champion was rapidly signing his new workout DVD's. He wasn't counting on the woman who was shoving her way to the front of the line.
"Sir, someone's disrupting your signing!" hissed one of the guards. Bobbing his head up, Mr. Satan suddenly realized who it was shoving and pushing.
"Give her this VIP pass this minute!" he ordered, thrusting it into the man's hand. Quickly the attendant made his way back and caught Chichi's attention.
"Ma'am, this is for you! You're Mr. Satan's special guest…" he waved. She accepted the pass and let herself be led by the arm to sit next to him behind the table. He shoved the attendant aside and pulled out the chair for Chichi.
"Oh Mr. Satan, I just HAD to see you again! You're my son's FAVORITE fighter," Goku's wife crowed loudly, pushing the picture under his hand. Everyone in line glared at her, and expectantly at Mr. Satan.
"Um… what a lovely surprise!" he said. Choruses of 'who is she' and 'tell us' echoed.
"But that's not all who I am, is it?" Chichi cooed, batting her eyelashes at him.
"Um yeah! That's right! She's… she's…" he stammered. Wildly glancing from his press people to the disgruntled fans he struggled for something to say.
"She's someone I know VERY well! She's the Ox King's daughter!" blurted out the World Champion.
"The Ox King?" whispered a gentleman wearing a Mr. Satan baseball cap backwards.
"That's right!" Chichi laughed. "Wife of the one and only… Son Goku… you might remember he won the 23rd Budokai?"
"Wait a minute, I remember that one! It's where that monster blew up the ring?" an old timer chimed in.
"Wait you're lying!" someone else, sporting a T-shirt with the world's 'great hero' posing across it, said.
"Um… but we don't have time for memory lane! Because she's joining me for a lunch break folks!" Hercule suddenly blurted out.
"But you can't leave your fans," the Ox-Princess insisted.
"I'm sorry to let you Satan fans down, but I'll be back in an hour! So hang tough! The first one hundred in line gets a personally autographed copy in the mail of my upcoming 100 greatest punches!" the would-be hero babbled.
"If you insist," Chichi smiled winningly, though her eyes gleamed like that of a cobra.
"Yes sir!" he nodded. Grabbing his press agent he hissed, "Find some way to distract them while I get rid of her!"
People grumbled and complained, pushing against one another in the crowded store. However as their hero politely offered his arm to Son Chichi, he shot urgent looks to all his staff. Faced with disappointing a half thousand fans and public humiliation through Goku's wife's appearance he figured trying to sweet talk her was the best bet. He led her into his limo, and whispered something to his chauffeur. "Drive us out of here, around the block! Make it snappy!"
Once she sat down in the large limo, he took the seat across from her. "Um… what brings you here, Chichi? What an unexpected… surprise!"
"I just had to come out and see you in action, Mister Satan. There were a few things I wanted to clear up…"
"You didn't just come for an autograph I take it?" Hercule tugged aside his collar beneath where he felt sweat building up. His guest sat primly across from him with crossed knees, and watched as he opened the minibar.
"Champagne, beer, wine?"
"Just spring water, thank you," the Ox Princess thanked him reaching in to grab herself a bottle of the very expensive stuff. Hercule grabbed himself a beer and popped the top. He guessed this was going to be one of the most uncomfortable limo rides of his life.
"So um… what did you come to see little ol' me about? I hope lunch was okay…" he said.
"Just wanted a little chat with you, Mr. Satan," she said sweetly, sipping her drink.
"About what? What did you um… want to clear up?"
"Oh just a little story I hear going on… and on, and on," Chichi said with a half mean smile. "I understand You've been telling fibs."
"Oh c'mon what do you mean?" he glared at her.
"Well all these years you've been going ON about how YOU defeated Cell?" Gohan's mother raised her manicured eyebrow, and glared him right in the eye. "And it's getting pretty old, don't you think?"
"What brought this on?"
"I've been a patient woman, Mr. Satan. I can be rational and calm. But I've waited FAR too long to get this off my chest. And frankly I'm TIRED of this whole 'I defeated Cell single-handedly' song and dance. Since it's an outright boldfaced LIE!" Chichi shouted.
"Now just a minute here!" Hercule began, resorting to his 'tough guy' image for this challenge. Clearly from the way her face contorted in anger as a result, it was not one of his better career moves.
"Don't you tell me to wait, buster!" shrilled the Ox-Princess, grabbing the front of his shirt and pushing her nose right into his face. All the fury of seven years had reached critical mass and she had the chance to speak her peace. She wasn't about to pass it up now.
"Um… wait… you've got it all wrong! It wasn't MY idea!" Hercule gasped, inching back on the limo seat.
"Do you know the PAIN of a mother who lost her HUSBAND to this monster… only to turn on the TV and see YOUR mug plastered everywhere?" Chichi started to rant. She shoved her face right into Hercule's and he backed up on the limo seat.
"N… no… but I did lose my wife…" he stammered.
"Because she RAN AWAY from you! Isn't that right? Your dear daughter shared a lot of things with me, MISTER Satan. But that's not what I'm talking about here, is it?" she half growled. Flames seemed to dance in her eyes. Hercule realized this was one enemy he couldn't bluff his way out of.
"Now be reasonable! What… what do you want?" the would-be hero queried, feeling as if he was facing the end of the world.
"Gohan was the one who defeated Cell you big MORON!" Chichi screamed, intensely enough to rattle the limousine windows. "Dammit how COULD you pretend to give your heart and soul to save the world when my poor son lost his FATHER that day, fighting that monster? You can't understand how it KILLS me to remember that! My little Gohan almost DIED to save your backside, and you have the unmitigated GALL to presume your daughter is too GOOD for marrying him!"
"Please… wait a minute! I didn't mean… I…" Hercule half-whimpered, much like his dog Bee did for an extra helping of steak. "You've got it all wrong!"
"Don't you talk back to me mister!" she continued to rant, still grabbing him by the front of his shirt. "You won't get out of this till I'm THROUGH saying my piece! At least sit here like a MAN and hear me out!"
"Um… okay you win! I'll listen!" he surrendered, hoping he wouldn't lose control of all bodily functions then and there.
"I want you to think LONG and hard about what you've been doing! You don't know how lucky you are to have my Gohan and Goku pulling your lazy pompous BUTT out of death's way both times! Yes you DID have a tiny part in saving the world, but to dare to pretend to have done something you didn't do… there's only so much a mother can take!" Chichi half sobbed. "Because you rub it in our faces every damn DAY! And all this money you make at MY and other's expense!"
"I… I didn't… think…"
"No you didn't think! All you care about is your damn IMAGE! While my sons barely can get the education they deserve. While you eat STEAK and lobster and everyone bows and worships the ground you walk on! I bet they even think your breath smells nice when you get up and don't brush your TEETH!" the Ox Princess shrilled.
After this tirade she shook him so hard his teeth rattled, like dried beans in a maraca. The world's champion and hero felt himself getting dizzy. "How dare you… how DARE YOU!"
"Oh crap… I'm dead," Hercule whined, knees knocking as she shoved him up against the wall of the limo. Her eyes almost blazed red like hot coals, and he felt a wet spot staining his pants. "I.. I'm sorry!"
"What was that?" she demanded.
"I'm SORRY!" the wrestler shouted. "I'm so sorry! Look, please don't kill me! Let me go!"
"You're sorry for WHAT?"
"I'm sorry for… claiming I beat up Cell when I didn't! You don't understand how they just spun it on me…"
To this Goku's wife screamed, "And that makes it okay? Instead of denying it you capitalized on it! You lied by omission, you JERK! That's just as horrible as lying outright!"
"I… please… look, if you want money I can pay you! Please… just don't…"
Despite all of his blubbering she was hardly swayed. Even the momentary mention of remuneration for past misery only brought a brief respite. Releasing his shirt she seethed, "Oho, you don't know how much I wanted to scream 'you big fake' in front of all your fans. If it weren't for the fact my son was marrying your daughter I would."
"So you see… you can't say anything…" Hercule feebly protested, landing back against the seat. "You know what this would mean?"
"Oh yes I do. That would deny a poor innocent girl, ignorant of your crimes of her rightful dowry. And I can't do that. Not when my Gohan can live like a king… at your expense," she cackled.
That peal of laughter frightened him far more then her former screaming fit. Seizing his opportunity the world champion put in, "So you do need me… after all."
"Unfortunately yes. That's the only reason I keep my mouth shut. But you're going to do something about revising that little history stunt of yours. The next time someone wants you to tell the tale of how you single-handedly defeated CELL, you're going to tell them you had HELP. Not only that but you'll tell them the truth."
"But that would ruin my…"
Rolling her eyes she groaned, "Oh save it! Would it kill you to tell them that GOHAN was the one who struck the final blow? Aren't you enough loved by your loyal followers that you could tell them ANYTHING and they'd STILL bow and kiss your feet? Haven't we suffered enough for your blunder?"
"B…but… it would ruin me!" whined he. Still eyeing him predatorily she tapped her chin.
"Come to think of it… I've got a better idea. I think it will be far better punishment to see you squirm and try to cover your mistakes… especially if I let it slip that you were fibbing?" she snickered, with an almost diabolical smirk. "But no… that's too devious. I think it would save you a lot of trouble if you just fessed up about Cell. That Gohan was the hero, and you were a convenient distraction."
All he could say was simply, "But Ma'am… Chichi… I can't do that."
Chichi continued, wagging her finger into his face like he was Gohan or Goten being punished, "Can't or won't? You played your role, Goku told me. And I'm generous enough to give you that much. But Cell, that's just unforgivable! Wouldn't you be a bigger man if you admitted it was a misunderstanding? My Goku gave his life, and my son almost followed him. And you stealing the credit is… unspeakable!" Chichi continued.
"But what can I do? You're asking the impossible!" shrugged he.
"You'll figure it out. Because one way or another, the truth will be told. And you'll have to pick up the pieces," sighed Goku's wife. Temper abated, she smoothed out her own dress, then tucked her hair back into some semblance of normalcy.
"Am I supposed to call a press conference and say, 'Hey folks, you know the whole Cell business? Well… I lied'?" Hercule gasped, shaking his head violently.
Chichi dug through her bag and pulled out a compact mirror. As she continued to talk she reapplied her makeup, "Well that would be a good start. But I suppose you'll find a way to sugar coat it and spin it for the press like you always do."
Helpless to her reasoning he continued to look for a convenient out. He was accustomed to trickery, resorting to his charisma to charm the ladies. However Chichi was no ordinary lady, unfortunately for him. "But… how can I… when can I? I mean come on. Is that really what you want?"
"I won't let it slip right away. There are people who remember things here and there. And because your daughter is dating my son, I'm sure I can convince them not to hide things for your benefit. Gohan is far more of a hero then you'll ever be. I suppose that's enough. But I'll be watching you."
"Well does he really WANT all the publicity? I mean I dunno but Gohan strikes me as the kind of kid who doesn't like the limelight. And anyhow, there's enough of a spotlight that's gonna be on them when they do get married. And how about that husband of yours. Does he really want fame and fortune?" Hercule managed to stammer.
Flustered, Chichi's face turned beet red. "How can you dare presume to get inside my husbands and son's head, mister! You're lucky I don't boot you into next WEEK for saying that!"
In a long exhalation Hercule released all the tension. It was far worse then when 18 had squeezed 10 million Zenni out of him. He offered, "Maybe you and I… can make a deal? I mean you and I both know what went down. But I'm reminding you, that my whole fortune and Videls are built on my reputation. Can you take the chance it will take a dive?"
"Spare me," the Ox-Princess mumbled.
"You… well… um… if you keep quiet… I'll pay you," said Hercule. "We both benefit. Let my daughter and your son have a nice life with lots of money."
Again the mention of money caught her attention, judging by the quick swivel of her head towards him. Raising one eyebrow she queried, "What's that?"
"I'm rich, and I stole the credit for Cell. Maybe I can make it up to you. You claim I got rich at your expense. Well I can pay you… pain and suffering? You want them to be well off right? And it's the least I can do to make up for the years you say I've been 'cashing in' on this Cell deal."
"This isn't a court of law, mister!" Chichi snorted, unimpressed. She was convinced he had watched way too much television. Hadn't she always warned her son it would rot his brains? Clearly the evidence of this sat before her now, quivering like jelly.
Frantically he waved his hand toward her, "But hear me out! How about ten million Zenni for starters… as a… good will offer… I mean your son's going to school and all…"
Any further expressions of ire melted into disgust on her otherwise attractive face. She agreed, "If I had more pride I'd laugh in your face. But seeing as it's hard to make ends meet, I think we can negotiate. I should kick myself for this."
Patting his pockets, Hercule over-dramattically dug through them. Then he laughed nervously, "Um… well… I don't have my checkbook on me, but I can have someone draw up some papers."
"You do that. I'll be back to make sure you're not flimflamming me. I have a better idea. Why don't you let me off where I say, and pay for whatever I next buy? As a so called 'first installment'?" said she.
Hercule extended his hand and she put hers in it. He placed a kiss on the back, and then Chichi gave him her most charming smile. She knocked on the partition between driver and cabin. When it rolled down she cast the driver another sweet grin. "I'm ready to leave now. Mr. Satan is all yours."
"Sir? Where should we let her off?"
"The mall would be a nice place," Chichi suggested. Hercule wiped sweat off his face when she waited for the driver to stop the limo and open the door for her. Once she climbed out, the fighter began to relax a tiny bit. In the last fifteen minutes he had tasted a slice of hell he would not soon forget. Guilt did often strike him, but he usually had a way of pushing it aside when thinking about the dollar signs. Now he had to do it for Videl's sake. At that moment she had him by the balls and he did not like it. Quickly whipping out his cellphone he dialed his lawyer's number.