Basker Island - South Blue

12 Years Later

I stumbled my way down one of Basker City's many alley ways. I could feel the blood from my most recent battle dripping off me, the sounds of the droplets hitting the ground not even properly reaching my ears.

One of those damn pirates had detonated some kind of bomb next to me and I was still struggling to hear anything that wasn't the piercing ringing through my skull.

In the past I would have spent hours complaining about it, but after spending eight of my twelve years here on this island fight whatever pirates happened to show up I was uncomfortably used to the sensation of deafness, hell I was actually kinda more pleased in myself for that being the only real 'wound' I ended up with today.

After leaving the knocked-out pirates I was now fumbling my way back through the islands main hub city, a place more populated and culturally built up than any of the other South Blue islands I had encountered in the past. Though I suppose that was to be expected when you considered that this island was the closest port for anyone seeking to enter the grand line.

Which of course meant plenty of pirates, traders and marines happened to travel through here at a near constant rate.

Well maybe more so for the traders and marines these days.

After spending a good year and a half after washing up here struggling to get any food I ended up turning to minor bounty hunting on the pirate crews showing up to restock, mostly getting by at first abusing the hell out of my unnaturally high mink speeds to pick of weak members.

It was a rough life, but the locals and marines stationed here had been kind enough to give me support as long as I managed to keep the collateral damage to a minimum.

I stopped briefly in my alley wandering, catching my bearings. I looked around confirming none of the crew had stuck around to tail me, before lightly kicking open an unmarked wooden door and heading inside.

My apartment here was not particularly impressive. Years of mostly spending time training and fighting to earn a living had really put a dampener on my actual desires to make the place look nice. It was a two-room set-up, and I found myself immediately bypassing the main room and heading to the second of the two.

My bathroom had started out as a one of those classic white tile filled washrooms, however as I found myself mostly using it to wash off pirate blood from my fur, I had redecorated the tiles to be black so I could at least pretend not to see the countless stains I was leaving around the place.

I found myself now just turning on the shower and plopping myself onto the ground letting the water just soak me to the core as my mind started drifting off.

Honestly after that night on the Fountaine, I had expected to find myself never wanting to touch water again, yet surprisingly I had instead found it to be the case that it was just salt water I hated the presence of surrounding me, whilst tap and sink water managed to soothe my mind somewhat.

I stood up again after some time had passed, I wasn't the most certain on how long it was, but the ringing in my ears had just stopped and I could now hear the water splashing off me which I figured was as good a sign as any to finish up.

After finishing up the whole showering thing and dealing with how much of a pain it is to dry yourself when your whole body is covered in hair, I grabbed some mouthwash and a toothbrush.

I wasn't stupid after all, if my body was part hound that meant I had a killer jaw and I abused the hell out of it in combat, a strong bite on a typical sailors are was usually enough to render it nearly unusable for the rest of the fight.

The downside to this I found out early on, was I got really tired of the whole bloody mouth look, I was what seemed to be the only mink in the whole Blue and a lot of the locals had only their imaginations to tell them what that meant, so the dog girl wandering around covered in blood with pirate meat sticking to her teeth really made a bad first impression on most people, and after the first few people accused me of being a monster I really had to try hard to keep up the civilised look.

Plus, the whole issue of torn clothing meant most of my income went all the way into keeping up the appearance of not being a man-eating werewolf.

Finally, once the whole cleaning up part of the routine was dealt with, I finally returned to the main room of my abode. It never reached a level of comfort like my old room, but after a few years of sleeping outdoors I could appreciate the comfort of a room that wasn't likely to collapse from rain, and its location near the centre of the city made me very much doubt the likelihood of cannon fire destroying the place I live again.

Also, I got the benefit of having my own kitchen area to actually devote myself to cooking. I hadn't been much of a chef in my past life, and the time at sea had been very dietary restricting, so I had taken up the art of cooking to really have a workable skill once I finally got back to the rest of my family. Well if that even happened.

It additionally gave me a good position to finally leave this place, a bunch of crews didn't have decent chefs, so my passable quality meals were bound to find a place in some crew eventually. Its just most of the Pirate crews that passed through had no talent in them whatsoever. Like how was I supposed to get through a good portion of the grand line with one of these weak as hell crews?

I just needed to find a pretty strong crew, then try and join in as like their version of what's his name, the chef who kicked, god its been nineteen years and I've freaking forgotten all the actual One Piece casts names. I'd probably remember it if I saw it but so far checking the news the Straw crew still hadn't been making a name for themselves yet, or maybe they had been currently doing so and I just hadn't been able to tell out of ignorance.

What didn't help me much with that whole side of things though, was my complete lack of knowledge on what South Blue crews of note even existed to a scale I could properly work with. Sure, I remembered some character design stuff, but its been nearly twenty years since I even had a glimpse at the series I was living in, how the heck is anyone expected to remember side character trivia for that long?

After internally contemplating my current situation, I did the only thing I could do really at the moment and leapt onto my singular couch to try and relax a bit and let my body's aches have a chance to die down some more.

I didn't have a bed here due to space constraints, so the old couch I had set up for relaxing in functioned as a makeshift bed as well, something my internal canine had no issues with doing. I can't be sure of the exact timeframe it happened in, but I soon found myself falling asleep there still wrapped in the towel I hadn't exchanged for proper clothing in my weary state.

Basker City Docks

The sight of the pirate crew laying decimated was clearly infuriating my captain. He wasn't really the most level-headed of men I knew in the first place, so seeing something like this probably ticked him off in all the wrong ways.

"One of the South Blues most feared bounty hunters is on this island, and she didn't go for my crew!?"

My captain was one of those capital 'I' Idiots. "Try and think this through Captain. We only just arrived on the island and they were already long since taken out. The Grey Hound is probably no longer around the docks to even try attacking us."

His only reply was a clearly exaggerated frown.

"She may show up around town later, so we should take advantage of the low marine presence here to get supplies for our passage into the Grand Line. And if anyone in the crew sights her, they'll be sure to tell her you want to fight."

That seemed to cheer him up a slight bit, his frown returning to his trademark grin.

"Good. It's time to leave our final mark of strength in this sea, I'll show the world the power of the Kid Pirates."