Disclaimer: I don't own Dragon Ball Z or its characters. They respectfully belong to Mr. Akira Toriyama. I also don't own the show or concept of Iron Chef.
Author's Notes: Did anyone ever wonder how Chi-Chi was able to support her family while Goku was dead? I mean, look at how much those boys could eat! But there was never a mention of her ever having a job or any other source of income. Here is a little humourous piece explaining it all.
Chi-Chi opened the door to greet her oldest son, Gohan. "Hi honey! I'm so glad you could make it to visit us. You're father is about to come home soon, and I still haven't finished making anything for him!"
"Mom, I'm still amazed by how well you can keep this place running," replied Gohan as he entered. He took a seat in the kitchen.
Chi-Chi followed after him and started cooking with the various utensils she had on hand. "Goten is quite excited by this visit, so why don't you keep him company?"
"Okay, okay. I'll look after him, mom. I'll make sure he doesn't try to steal some food before all of it is cooked. But that won't stop me from trying."
Chi-Chi mock glared at him and then pecked her son's cheek as she reached for some spices. "That's a good boy. Now, say hello to your little brother."
As soon as she said that, Goten bounded into the room. "Hey Gohan!"
"Hello Goten." Gohan got off his seat and followed his brother to his room. "So what do you want to do today?"
"I dunno. You wanna go looking for some pictures for dad? Something for us to talk about over dinner."
"Why not? C'mon."
The two boys walked down the hall until they found the door leading to the basement. They wandered down the dark stairs and when they reached the bottom, Gohan pulled on the string cord that turned on what little light a single bulb could provide.
"Wow, there a lot more boxes in here than I remembered," commented Gohan.
"Well, we had to pack up a lot of your things since you don't live here anymore."
Gohan put his hand behind his head and let out a nervous chuckle. "Heh heh... Mom still not used to the idea that I'm a married man?"
Goten just shrugged his shoulders. "Maybe. But most probably: yes."
Changing the subject, Gohan quickly started to look around. "Why don't we get to finding some old photo albums or toys?"
They split up and fumbled as they searched around the barely lit basement. After a bit of sifting around the contents of the room, Goten pointed to a lone box in the corner. "I've never seen that one there before."
They both walked up to the box and started to examine it.
"From the looks of the dust settled on the surface, this box seems to have been here for a while," Gohan added.
"Well, there's barely enough light in here, so we could have easily missed it. Maybe there are some old photo albums in there."
"Yeah, probably dating back to mom and dad before I was born."
"Betcha mom must have been much more calm," Goten added snidely.
The brothers laughed, and with their super-strength, hoisted the box up. They carried it up the stairs and into the living room.
They set in down in front of the couch and started to find a way to open it.
Goku was glad to be on his way home, and in his excitement, he burst through the door.
"Something smells good Chi-Chi!" he exclaimed happily.
Chi-Chi turned her attention to the stove and to Goku. She waved the spatula in her hand at him.
"Goku! What have I told you?! Always use the door bell or knock first!" she scolded him.
Goku lowered his head and pouted. "I'm sorry." He stuck his lower lip out even further and added the sad puppy eyes.
"Oh..." Chi-Chi cooed softly. "You can't weasel your way out of this!" she then yelled. She took a breath before she dished out his punishment. "I want you to spend some time with your sons because they miss you!" She smiled widely instead of scowling.
Goku then looked up happily and bounded over to her. He kissed her cheek. "Of course I will! That doesn't sound like a bad punishment at all! In fact, more like a reward!"
"And if you're on extra good behaviour, you might just get a sample of tonight's dinner. Now, say hello to Goten and Gohan."
Goku nodded and found his boys in the living room. They were examining a box.
His sons looked up at him and smiled with surprise in their eyes. "Dad!"
"What are you two doing?"
"Oh, we were about to open this box. But everything seems to be taped up and tied with string," explained Goten.
"We're trying to see if this has anything from the good old days," said Gohan.
Goku then walked up to Gohan and Goten and he grabbed a taped down flap of the box. Gohan and Goten, catching on, also grabbed at the flap. Together, they pulled back until they ripped the top right off and they were sent tumbling to the floor!
The three of them got up, while rubbing their sore spots, and peered into the box.
"Huh. I never saw anything like this before!" exclaimed Goku.
"Me neither," replied both his sons.
Chi-Chi then stormed into the room. She saw them bending over an open box. She angrily put her hands on her hips. "I just finished the last dish for dinner and then I hear a crash! What do I have to clean up now?"
Gohan held up a fashion magazine with his mother gracing the cover. "Mom, I think you should clean this up."
"Yeah. Care to explain what all this is?" added Goten.
In shock, Chi-Chi wandered to the couch and plopped before the box. "I never thought you would ever find out. I never wanted you to find out about this."
"Chi-Chi! You never told me that you were a model! When did this start?"
She sighed. "Well, I guess we'll have to eat dinner in the living room, because it's a long story. Just try not to spill on the carpet."
Goku sat on the couch next to Chi-Chi, both of them balancing their plates on their laps while still trying to use the fork and spoon.
Goten and Gohan sat cross-legged on the floor, comfortably holding their plates in one hand and fork in the other.
"So," started Goten, with his mouth stuffed, "why don't you start telling us about what's in the box?"
"Goten, don't talk with your mouth full! Anyways, it started three years after Goku died and we were low on money."
"I'm sorry that I left you guys," Goku said.
"Honey, it's okay. Just let me get back to my story. Anyways, I went to Bulma's..."
Bulma opened the door to reveal her friend, Chi-Chi. She ushered her into the kitchen for some tea.
"Chi-Chi! It's so good to see you here! How are you doing right now?"
"Not so good. That's why I'm here. You see, we're low on funds since the prize money that Goku won-"
"Has been spent on food," Bulma finished. She took a sip from her cup. "It's okay Chi-Chi. I can lend you some money! No problem! Anything for my friend."
Chi-Chi angrily dropped her cup with a clink. "No. I didn't want to come here for charity. I just wanted to know if you might have a job for me."
"Hmm... Whenever Vegeta's on the war path, he takes it out on the servant bots. And lately, there's been a shortage of the cleaning staff. You're hired as my new head cleaning lady!"
Chi-Chi happily hugged her friend. "Thank you! I'll come in first thing Monday!"
From afar, they heard a door slam and the gruff, yet loud, bellow of, "Woman! Where's my lunch! And fix the Gravity Room while you're at it!"
Bulma shook her head.
"You know what, Bulma? I think I'll start right now."
"Sounds like a good idea."
"Okay, what does that have to do with you becoming a model?" asked Goku. He started on his fifth helping.
Chi-Chi, who was finished with her food, got up and reached into the box. She rummaged around until she pulled out another magazine with her on the cover.
"'Happy Homemaker'. Feature article, the one woman who runs the Capsule Corp. household."
Chi-Chi held a mop and bucket as she stood proudly in front of the Capsule Corp. compound.
"Alright ma'am, just keep that pose." The photographer then shot the picture.
"Uh, when will we conduct the interview?" Chi-Chi asked. She dropped the prop mop and bucket.
A blonde in a red short skirted suit with a killer figure then stepped up to her and grabbed her hand. "We'll conduct it right now!" she said with a haughty voice. "God, if only this interview would get me transferred to 'ELLE' magazine," the woman muttered.
As Chi-Chi was indignantly being dragged inside, she was ready to give that woman a piece of her mind. She was plopped down in the couch of Bulma's living room and had a tape recorder shoved in her face.
"This is Gwen Fellig, head reporter of 'Happy Homemaker' magazine with Son Chi-Chi. This incredible woman has managed to run the entire Briefs family compound! She is also the Mrs. Son, widow of the former Bodukai champion himself, Son Goku!"
"Now wait a minute here-" Chi-Chi started.
"So how did you ever get this job?" Gwen interrupted.
"Uh, well, my good friend Bulma gave it to me. She's seen how well I work."
"So you're personal friends with the Capsule Corp. heiress. How long have you known each other?"
"And so that interview went on. That woman was the most annoying one I ever met!"
"Well, you know those media types, mom," said Gohan.
"Anyways, Bulma said I looked good on the cover. But she wasn't the only one with that opinion. Some fashion magazine executive saw the same cover."
A brunette haired woman picked up the latest issue of "Happy Homemaker". She quickly paid for it and walked towards the direction of the Capsule Corp. compound. Along the way, she whipped out her cell phone and furiously dialed.
"Yeah, Claude! It's me, Franchesca. I have a fresh face for next month's issue! She seems young enough, plain yet with a subtle beauty to her. Not too waifish, that'll give us some good PR! Where ever did I find her? The cover of some quaint magazine... I'm on my way! To the Briefs family compound, what did you expect? Yes, yes. I'll see you Claude."
The woman known as Franchesca turned off the cell phone when she had finally made her way to the large mansion of Bulma Briefs.
"So what happened?" Goku asked eagerly.
"Well, it she barged right in through the gate and yelled at me for making her go through all the trouble of sweating. She then handed me her card. Before I knew it, I was being whisked away on a private jet to some photo shoot!"
A dark haired man with a goatee known as Claude was busy snapping away pictures.
"That's right darling! Just grab the camera's attention!" the man called out with his extremely fake Euro-trash accent.
"You don't talk! You are a work of art! Stand still and be pretty!"
"But Mr. Claude!" Chi-Chi said through gritted teeth.
The man immediately stopped. "What is it darling? Wrong lighting? Not enough blush or rouge? Make-up!"
"No, it's not that." Chi-Chi pointed towards the revealing dress she wore. "Do I really have to wear this? I mean, I have two boys of my own, and I wouldn't want them to get the wrong impression of their mother."
"Alright, alright. I will go to the wardrobe department, and tell them that you refuse to wear a famous designer's masterpiece!"
"Hey! I am the model here! I will wear what I think is appropriate!"
Claude called for one of his attendants to bring him his cell phone.
"Hello, Fanchesca. This 'model' of yours will not cooperate! You'll have to extend my dead line due to creative differences. Why? Because she will not wear a work of art! I will not agree to that! Fine, she is allowed to wear whatever she wants. No matter how tasteless it is."
Claude angrily turned off his cell phone and dejectedly picked up his camera.
"I'll need another two hours and a new roll of film."
"So mom, did you get to strut your stuff on any fashion runways?" asked Goten.
"A few. But I just quite after a few months. I heard of how much pressure there is in the fashion business, but I never believed it, until I experienced it myself."
"Oh yeah! So that's why Gohan was so busy baby-sitting me! And that also explains why I always being shoved off to Trunks' house for a while."
"I guess you had a lot of money saved up, huh, mom?"
"Of course! Where did you think the money to feed you boys came from?"
"That makes a lot of sense," said Goku.
"Wait a minute!" cried Gohan. "You said you were busy for a few months. But I was baby-sitting for a year!"
"Yeah Chi-Chi! What else happened?" inquired Goku.
"Oh, the instant celebrity status came and went, but not before they judges panel of the 'Iron Chef' were desperate enough to pick me for their next episode."
Chi-Chi had a steaming and very exotic looking bowl pushed in front of her face. Of course, from what she heard, the contents of the bowl were edible, and it was just a simple noodle soup. But, with rice noodles being the theme ingredient and presentation racked up extra points, even hamburgers were turned into an extravaganza.
She watched as the other judges took a taste and said their opinion. Soon, it was her turn. Calmly, she picked up her spoon and took a sample, like she would with her own food.
"Well, the presentation has impressed me, but as for taste, it seems to be matched with presentation. There is a certain element added in the broth, and if the dish wasn't prepared so quickly, the taste could have been absorbed by the noodles, thus adding to the essence of the meal. But with this extra, it seems that the meal will function well if it served with a side of red wine. It adds a kind of elegant intimacy to a private dinner."
Everyone looked at her blankly. They expected that the bumpkin housewife turned vapid model would say something stupid, just saying that the meal was fine, or could use more salt. But she seemed to know her food pretty well.
"I think I have a copy of that episode in there somewhere."
"So what else happened?!" exclaimed Goten.
"After a few more appearances, I was asked to become a competitor."
"Aw Chi-Chi! You're so good at cooking, I'm sure you beat them all!" cheered Goku.
Chi-Chi was back on the show, but this time, she wasn't judging, she was actually putting her skills to use.
Fortunately, she had experience in the area of cooking when under pressure. She remember when she had no idea when Goku and Vegeta's sparring sessions would end, so she would have to beat the clock in order to satisfy them in time.
The theme ingredient was rice, which was simple enough, but she also had to deal with some other trained chef. She was evenly matched, but she had to try.
The clock was ticking, and she dashed and reached across the kitchen. She had finished with cooking the rice and the vegetables, now it was time for the arrangement. She just had five minutes on the clock.
Carefully and quickly, she arranged the food on the platter. She added a little bit of parsley to add to the colour and taste.
Time was up, and she watched as the judged took their turns tasting the two dishes and making their comparisons.
The final verdict was passed, and the judges were in favour of... Chi-Chi!
Chi-Chi wanted to faint, but instead, she smiled broadly and thanked the judges. She was sure that with the money she would receive, she'd be able to feed both her boys for another few months.
"Wow! So what happened after that?" asked Goku. He looked up from the autographed picture of Takeshi Kaga.
"Well, I was offered to cater some celebrity parties," Chi-Chi replied.
"But mom, why aren't you still rich and famous?" whined Goten.
"Yeah mom. With all that money and if you still had modeling job, we'd be well off. Almost reaching the same financial status as Bulma!" added Gohan.
"I thought that I had more than enough money. So I took my last job just before I heard that you, Goku, would return! Fortunately, it was Bulma who broke the news to the public. I just had to step out gracefully."
"Do you miss any of that fame and fortune?" Goku asked.
"A little. I miss the attention, but sometimes, it was a bit suffocating. And the people you meet! They're even stranger than our friends. And besides, I wouldn't have had enough time to take care of you boys and turn you into upstanding young men. You know what happens to celebrity children. Turning into hoodlums. That's why I never told you boys about this. I'm not proud of some of it, and I didn't the fame to go to your heads."
"Oh mom. You sure know how to make the right choices," said Goten.
Gohan looked at his watch. "Geez, it's pretty late. Videl is probably worried about me!" He picked up the tape of all of Chi-Chi appearances on "Iron Chef". "I hope you don't mind if I take this with me. I want to show this to Videl!"
"Of course honey."
"Hey! Gohan! Can I come home with you? I wanna see the tape too!" Goten then turned to plead with his mother.
"Okay, okay. You just behave in Gohan's house. And I expect you and your brother to be back here by noon tomorrow!"
"Yes mom. Bye mom, bye dad!" With that, Goten left the house with his brother.
Goku was still rummaging through the box of hidden memories. He finally managed to pull out another magazine.
"Chi-Chi, I found this at the bottom of the pile. It seems you forgot to mention this." In Goku's hand, he displayed Chi-Chi seductively posing on the front of "Playboy" in one of the bunny outfits.
"Uh..." she babbled. "It was when I still doing some modeling. They offered a lot of money, and besides, it's a rare edition. I'm sure no one knows about it," she nervously replied.
Goku had a mischievous look in his eyes. "Well, why don't I take a little peek?"
Chi-Chi then added a little smile of her own. She walked up to him, took the magazine from his hand, and tossed it over her shoulder back into the box. "Why don't I give you your very own and very special centrefold?"
The two of them giggled as Goku started to playfully chase her in the direction of their bedroom.
Additional Author's Notes: Okay, I've only heard of "Iron Chef" and its concept, but I never really got a chance to watch the show. I don't have cable. So I'm really sorry if there's some rule that says judges shouldn't become competitors. And I really don't know if they give away prize money, so I apologize if I did anything wrong. Anyways, read and review! Tell me what you think!