May 27th, 774 AD
It was the day before the Seventh Anniversary of the Cell Games… the day that all of Earth celebrated the miraculous resurrection of those slain by the monster and the triumph of the World's Saviour.
The woman glared at the picture of the large man on the screen as the television station reminded everyone of the upcoming event. Her cleaver beat out a fast taboo of annoyance against the cutting board. Black eyes clouded with memories and a burning hatred towards the one that continued to deceive the world, denying those who truly deserved recognition of their just due.
The knife halted in mid-slice a proverb coming into her mind. The truth shall set you free.(1) Yes, perhaps it was time for the truth to be set free. Perhaps… perhaps it was time for all to be redeemed.
. . .
May 28th, 774 AD
"Don't eat too much Dad," the woman who was a mother herself chided her father as he waded towards the convection stands.
"Don't worry sweetheart, I won't spoil myself for your lovely food." The massive man called back, making a bee line for the candied apples.
"Mom," a black haired teenager grumbled morosely, his own memories upsetting him as he watched his grandfather's large body disappear into the crowd, "I don't know why you wanted to come to this. You hate anything to do with Mr Satan."
"This is also the Day of Resurrection," the mother reminded her moody son serenely, keeping a tight hand on her youngest son, the son who so resembled his father, to keep him from disappearing into the crowd.
The young man eyed his mother warily—these were not her usual actions during the day of the Cell Game Anniversary. She tended to fluctuate between ranting and raving, weeping and berating everything and everyone from Kami to Mr Satan. But he also had to admit, she did insist that they attend their local Shinto shrine to give thanks to Kami on this day.
"Momma, there's Trunks!" The youngest cried out as his violet haired friend was spotted through the crowd. Black eyes turned to look up at his mother, his face as childish and innocent as his fathers. "Can I stay with him?"
"Of course Goten, but remember, stay with the Briefs or come back to me."
An innocent smile of glee, then the young boy was gone in a flash. The two mischief makers united, one black haired and eyed the other with violet locks and blue eyes, to scamper though the thronging mass of people as everyone moved towards the main site of the ceremony.
"Gohan!" A feminine voice called out as an arm waved from the crowd ahead of them. Other waving arms and voices shouting his name joining as other classmates followed the girl's lead in an attempt to gain the boy's attention.
The woman smiled at her son as she saw some of his darkness lift from him. In many ways, this day was harder on him than it was on her. "Go on Gohan, you'll feel better if you spend some time with your friends."
Gohan looked hesitantly at his mother, "Mom they're just… schoolmates."
"Oh, I think that you'll find there's one who's a little more than that," his mother replied with an enigmatic smile. "Get going young man, enjoy yourself."
Flashing her one of his own smiles, different from his father's yet carried its' echo, he waded towards the groups ahead.
She watched him go with a faint smile on her face until the crowd finally swallowed them up. The smile faded as a passively blank expression filtered over her face.
The only thing she regretted about what was going to happen, was the hurt betrayal that that young woman and many others were going to feel when the truth was revealed.
Ah well, the truth hurt but bandaging something with lies was a lot worse.
. . .
The man who was the Voice of the World Tournaments and so many other events, related to or sponsored by marital arts adjusted his tie one more time before reluctantly picking up his cordless microphone. Wondering once again how he had been pushed into announcing for an event that was nothing more nowadays than a publicity stunt for the man known as the World Saviour.
Where had they all gone? He wondered as he walked from the makeup trailer, the true men that he had seen fight in the arena during his youth, not the boneheads that strutted about now.
Taking his place in the spot light, the tournament announcer began do what he did best, keeping people entertained with his voice, as the multitude of sponsors spokesperson's each took a time before the podium, as did city council members, the mayor and other highly influential people such as the Capsule Corporation.
Until, finally it was the Saviour's turn to speak. The man landed on the stage with a flashy move, white cape flapping and the golden World Champion's belt shining like a small sun, assuming a masculine pose before the crowd as cameras flashed eagerly.
When the Saviour spoke the man did not speak of remembrance of the terrible event, but rather on how he was the greatest, something that his mass of rabid fans devoured zealously.
He, who could lie to a camera without flinching and smile at a mountain of hostile muscle-bound martial art master, had a hard time concealing his disgust. Then came the part where the Saviour offered to take on any challenger that disputed his claim, something that the Saviour had started five years ago and had no takers. After all, he was the undefeated World Martial Arts Champion and the Man That Had Defeated Cell.
"I will," a woman's voice called out coolly.
Shock gripped everyone. Heads turning to look in disbelief at the middle-aged woman in Chinese garments who had her black gazed levelled at the Saviour. Reporters and their cameramen jostling each other for the best coverage of this juicy development.
"Who are you to think you can challenge the World Champion and Saviour?" Satan Hercule said, sneering dismissingly from his place behind the podium.
"Who I am is not important," the woman replied icily, "You have issued a challenge. I have accepted it. That is all that is important."
Massive hands gripped the podium momentarily, "So be it woman, fight me if you want! Come forward if you dare."
The crowd parted a path for the woman like the Red Sea had parted for Moses. Without hesitation she stepped forward, head high as she looked neither left nor right. Her stride even, long split tunic swaying with the movements of her legs.
He who was the Announcer looked hard at the woman, her face and the grace of which she moved was faintly familiar… as if he had seen her somewhere in some arena decades ago.
Calmly the woman mounted the steps leading to the podium dais, stopping only when she was mere feet away from the World Champion that towered over her in stature and dwarfed her with his muscle mass.
Whispers as always ran though the crowd, their tone one of confidence that this upstart wrench would soon get what she deserved. However, six pairs of eyes watched her solemnly from the crowd, just as fourteen others watch just as intently from their television screen on a secluded island.
"Hey, Gohan, isn't that your mother?" The daughter of the World Saviour hissed to her companion. The teenage boy declined to answer, but that only confirmed for Satan Videl the woman's identity and at the same time left her wondering about the reason for Gohan's mother's challenge to her father.
The woman waited patiently as in true showmanship style, Hercule dropped his cape to the podium ground and removing the Champion Belt thrust it high into the air for the crowd to cheer at. Handing the treasured Belt over to one of the multiple aids that accompanied him everywhere in public and especially at events like this, he took up his most impressive fighting stance.
The woman too dropped gracefully into a stance, the Announcer looked even more intently at the woman, the base of her stance was of the Ox-King Fighting Style but there were some others that he did not immediately recognise mixed in as well. His voice raising in excitement a makeshift gong was sounded and the fight began.
Hercule lunged forward with an impressive punch as he shouted the attack, "One Ton Mega-crusher!"
The woman merely spun aside as smoothly and as graceful as a dancer, settling once more into her stance.
The World Saviour regained his footing quickly and whirling was upon her once more, shouting yet another attack.
Yet again the woman avoid as if she was merely whirling about on a dance floor.
Hercule felt his anger grow—no woman would make a mockery of him! Even if he had to use his deadliest attack in the end to win, he would do so to show the world that he was still Champion.
Ignoring the taunts that he threw at her and avoided his attacks, the woman made it look like a dance—where one stumbled through all the moves while the other floated about as if dancing with the wind.
The Announcer could barely keep himself from screaming, here was a true master of the martial arts. One who knew not only the Ox-King Style but strong influences of the Kamesenin created by the legendary Turtle Hermit.
The fight waged on. The World Saviour throwing punch after punch, kick after kick, attack after attack, but still the woman continued to dance, no attack of her own being used.
Soon it became apparent that Satan Hercule, the Mighty World Champion was tiring, his energy being wasted on attacks that did not land and charging after an opponent who could not be caught.
Videl watched with numb shock as tripping once more from his own momentum, her father stumbled to his feet to try and attack the woman again. Once again he failed, the woman dancing away.
She looked at her companions, they too had the same stunned expression—except one, Son Gohan. His expression was calm, slightly concerned but not truly worried… did that mean… he had known… he had known that his mother had such skill? How was such a thing possible?
Hercule took one last stand, gathered his energy and just as he began to unleash it—his feet were swept out from underneath him. While airborne a foot contacted solidly with his back, sending him even higher in the air, to crash back to the ground and lay still. A central nerve stuck and paralysed until it could be treated.
Jaws unhinged and shock sent nearly all reeling.
Satan Hercule did not rise.
The woman smoothly rose from her stance as she looked down at her opponent. Eyes hooded, without looking at anyone but the face of the frozen man who looked up at her with horror she began to speak.
"I have not fought you for myself, but for the names of the good men you have slandered." Her voice was icy and cutting, "Those you have denounced as fakes, sneering at that which you have claimed is illusion, and ridiculing fighting styles as mock-imitations. They are masters and the truth demands to be known."
Her eyes briefly meet those of the Announcers before dropping back to Hercule's. "But for you to fully understand of what I speak, I must tell you a story that began long ago. Thirty-seven years ago, an alien was sent to raze Earth upon maturing but his programming was destroyed and instead he was raised by an elderly man who treated him as his grandson."
Black eyes looked up once more, this time flickering over the crowd. "I can sense your scepticism. How could extraterrestrials exist, let alone be sent to Earth in spacecrafts without us knowing?"
Before she could continue however, another voice spoke.
"I vouch for what this woman says, Capsule Corporation has long known of the existence of extraterrestrial."
Gasps rippled though the crowd, for the world knew the blue haired and eyed woman that spoke. The famous Briefs Bulma, owner and president of the large multibillion dollar conglomerate known to all as Capsule Corporation. Her blue eyed gaze was steady as the two women looked at each other.
"Indeed, one could say they have a very close relationship with aliens," the black haired woman said, sharing a smile with the blue haired woman, before picking up the thread of her story once again. "The alien boy was raised as a disciple of the martial arts by the old man."
"749 AD… a particularly well known year among historians for the year that the infamous Desert Bandit and Carrot Gang vanished as well as the demolishment of Emperor Pilaf's Empire. The reason was all one alien boy."
Some grumbles of disbelief from the crowd, but there were others of encouragement as the mood of the crowd fluctuated.
"More years past and when the boy reached his twelfth year he as well as a former disciple of the Orange Temple continued their training under a legendary master. The two boys became fast friends and where the last students ever taught by this master."
Minds were frantically ransack, trying to pin down who this legendary martial artist master could be.
"The 21st World Tournament takes place and the winner was Jackie Chun. The boy that this tale began with took second. There is another event that year that I should mark, for many of you who are my age and older will remember May 12th of the year 750 AD… the day the Red Ribbon Army fell. Though the rumours about what lead to this groups demise are varied, the shocking truth is that the entire army was wiped out by a boy… an alien boy who was now merely thirteen."
Jaws dropped disbelievingly, for even decades later the hated army's tyranny was remembered by most and felt but some. A boy had decimated the Red Ribbon Army?
"The 22nd World Tournament takes place, a fighter of the Crane School wins. The boy once again takes second place. The 23rd World Tournament is held. This is the year the boy, now a young man of nineteen, wins. This is also the year that he married and in the year that followed had a son, the son was named for the old man that had raised the alien."
The 23rd World Tournament? Who had won it? Minds were ransack again, pieces falling into place of the disjointed puzzle.
"In 761 AD, the man with two companions and his son battle to save the world. This fight and their victory never made it into any textbooks, for only a handful knew of what they have accomplished."
Brows furrowed, indeed, that year struck none of them as important.
"October 12th 761 AD…" here her voice grows momentarily faint, "The elder brother of the alien arrives on Earth, kidnaps his nephew and attempts to turn the man back to the ways of his alien race. The brother was killed, but not before a secret of Earth was told and it is learned that more aliens were to come and raze the planet. Training began for the man, and the friends that he had gathered over the years, ones who indecently had all fought in the World Tournaments at one point or another and reached the final rounds."
"The day that the two aliens arrived… it is a day that is marked by history but usually dismissed do to government efforts to explain it away as a freak accident with military satellites crashing to Earth… even with the evidence of video coverage. It was November 3rd 762 AD. Ah, I see some of you remember that day, for it was the day North City(2) was wiped from the face of the Earth."
Pale faces in the crowd. Yes indeed, there where those that remembered that day very well. For it was the day that many had lost family, friends, and lovers. They also recalled the news broadcast that they had seen and later on the government would declare was a hoax.
"That day one of the invading aliens died. The other…" Eyes slide to look at a spiky haired man with an aura of danger and stoic face, "The other has since settled as much as can be expected from a member of a ruthless warrior race."
There was some confusion at that statement, heads and eyes swivelling in the direction that the strange woman had glanced at. All that was in the direction was the Capsule Corporation representatives. The Briefs family and their companions didn't flinch under the sudden scrutiny, they merely continued to watch the woman as she continued speaking.
"Other things happen, other battles are fought—but not on Earth, so I shall not concern you with it though I shall let it be known that if they had lost, than Earth too would be lost, razed and sold off by space pirates to the highest bidder long ago."
There were many who snorted at this, conquer Earth? Not likely, they had a superb military force. Those individuals however hesitated over the memory of Cell.
"But an event that you are all intimately familiar with, seven years ago, May 17th the day a monster emerged and announced what he called the Cell Games. Those that had defended Earth countless times gathered once more to face the greatest threat, a biological android that had been created by a human."
Shocked gasps were ripped from many throats. The monster had been created by them? It couldn't be true, heads shook in denial, no human could ever create such a macabre creature.
"Aye, the monster was created by the former leader and financial backer of the Red Ribbon Army, Dr. Gero. But that was not what made the monster dangerous, no, what made the monster dangerous to them was that it had been constructed from their own blood, their own power. I mean this literally, their very DNA had gone into the monster's construction."
"May 28th, the alien man and his son fought Cell. The father died. The son saved the world."
The woman stopped speaking. Gathering her own thoughts and emotions while giving the world time to remember what had been seen on footage of the Cell Games. Before the crowd could voice their still present denial and disbelief she continued speaking.
"The proof of what I say lies with Saviour Canyon—it is the remembrance of the final blast between a monster and a child. A Killer and a Saviour. For yes, these fighters—these warriors of the Earth fought with more than just bone and flesh. They fought with the energy that is in every living being… they merely have the ability to manifest it into physical attacks that you dismissed as trickery of light." She sneered down at the defeated man, finally looking away from the crowd.
"Remember, this was for the names of the good men slandered. Those that the world has denounced, ridiculed, and sneered at as fakes. They are masters and they are heroes." She turned sharply on her heel and began to stride away.
"Wait!" The Announcer cried out, the world held its breath.
The woman halted but did not turn.
"You are Chi-chi are you not?"
"I remember you now. You fought in the 23rd World Tournament." The Announcer paused and cleared his throat.
"You are the woman who married the alien—the alien named Son Goku."
Silence. Then she strode off the podium, never once looking back at the beaten form of the World Champion, ignoring the microphones thrust into her face and questions shouted at her.
Come what would follow, the truth had been told, and that was all that mattered.