Disclaimer: One piece doesn't belong to me. (...and you don't want my hands on it, believe me.) Just a short drabble.


Luffy's condition had much improved by dawn of the second night. Boiling fever had cooled down to a simmer, and Chopper had finally given the 'OK' sign. Everybody relaxed. Lazily the crew scattered about the spacious room, relieved enough from Chopper's confidence to finally drop their two-day vigil. As if on cue, a soldier reported in with Luffy's hat, stating that he'd found it near the city gates. Wondering how on earth it blew all the way over there – but immensely relieved from having found it – Vivi praised the royal soldier then dismissed him.

So that's how they've all gathered about in the room now, staring at the hat in the middle. It was a miracle to have found it intact after all that's happened.

Which brought up a question. Just how much could this hat withstand?

"Well I've seen it pierced by a sword god knows how many times."

"Me too. A variety of sword types too. Ranging from broad bastard swords to estoques."

"Remember that time it was ripped apart? I had to mop up the floor twice after that. How is it humanly possible to cry so much?"

"Well if you ask it that way, how's it humanly possible to stretch?"

"...good point. Maybe being able to cry that much comes with being rubber."

"Back to the point here. Can't remember how many times I had to sew it back together. But the strange thing is, every time I look at it, it seem to look exactly the same as the first time I've seen it. I mean, won't the straw have run out by now???"

"And it never gets dirty. And I mean NEVER. It's a miracle, considering what he rolls around in, but I mean, it practically SHINES on top of his head even when himself is unrecognizably filthy."

"Like a crown."

"Yeah. Kinda like a crown. ...which is creepy, 'cause in a way it is. ...hey is that hat alive?"

"Get a grip on yourself Usopp."

"No! I mean, just look at it! It's got a survival instinct to match a cockroach! Luffy himself! The Panda-man!"

"The what?"

"Never mind. But you get what I'm saying, no?"

"Well yeah... ...sometimes I swear it grows..."

"My thoughts exactly. I mend it, and the next time I see it the spot I patched last time is as new as a newly made. ...Didn't he say that he got that hat from someone else? How old's that thing anyway?"

"More than a decade, presumably... ...aren't straw hats supposed to, like, rot, or grow bugs, or something like that after so many years?"

"Watch what you say... Luffy will throw a fit when he hears you guys down- talking his hat like this."

"Hey, we're not down-talking! It's a simple discussion, about an alien that may have transformed and decided to live the rest of its life as Luffy's hat. ('cause there's no more glorious position than that)"

Usopp turned, stealing a timid glance at Luffy. More precisely, at the tangle of sweaty sheets, soft bandages and pale flesh on the Alabasta-style bed. The same place he'd stayed for the last three days.

"......besides, he's not awake to hear us."

Then a silence roamed through the spacious room, winding its way around each of the crews before sliding out the open windows.