It's a scorching night aboard the Going Merry, and Zoro is having difficultly sleeping. After tossing and turning for some time, the swordsman finally gives up his search for sleep and rolls off his cot, careful not to bump Usopp or Luffy or Chopper, all of them snoring loudly. Unfortunately, the air on deck is just as heavy and as stifling as the air below deck; Zoro eyes the light coming from the kitchen hesitantly only for a moment.
Sanji is still awake, which comes as no surprise to the green haired man. His torso is bare and droplets of sweat shine at his temples; he is by the table perched bird-like on a stool, an mashed and unlit cigarette hanging from his lips; he concentrates on the worn cards in front of him, halfway finished with a game of solitaire. "I need the nine of spades." He grunts when Zoro sits across from him, rolling the cigarette to the other side of his mouth. "I could win if I could just get the goddamn card."
But the nine of spades is trapped between a four of hearts and the queen of diamonds. Sanji gnaws distractedly on the end of his cancer stick and glares at the queen as though wishing it would burst into flame. Zoro could laugh at the murderous expression, but it's too hot to laugh. The love cook eventually gathers up the cards in defeat and shuffles the deck expertly.
"Gin rummy or poker?" The blonde asks. "Water or beer?"
"Poker." Zoro replies. "And some beer."
Sanji deals their hands and then fills two glasses with alcohol. It's better than the stuff they usually drink and he knocks it back with a satisfied gulp. It burns on the way down, and he wins the first round with a straight.
Three drinks later, Sanji is winning. He has drunk less than Zoro but his pale cheeks are pink and his blue eyes are abnormally bright; he lays down a flush and all but giggles as Zoro swears and throws his hand down on the table. "You're cheating, love cook." He accuses. "You're fucking cheating."
"You're just a bad poker player." The blond smirks, though his lips are sloppy. His fingers stumble a bit as he picks up the cards and shuffles for their next hand. "It's a good thing we're not playing for money or you'd be in my debt, swordsman."
Zoro snorts and picks up his hand, which needs a jack of clubs to become a full house. "I bet that I can win this hand." He boasts and he might be a bit drunk; the lines of Sanji's shoulders have become increasingly attractive and he wonders if Sanji would hold him between his lips like that cigarette, if he asked. Zoro knows that somehow this has been brewing since Luffy assembled his ragtag crew and he word vomits, "I bet you a kiss that I'll win."
Sanji raises an eyebrow, but is either too drunk to care or understands that there's more to it than the alcohol or the heat. "Alright." The blond agrees. His hand is a mess when he lays it on the table two turns later, and the pair of nines –a spade and a heart- are no match for the full house Zoro has. Zoro opens his mouth to tell Sanji that he was joking about the bet, even though he really hadn't been, but the words are drowned by the sensation of a soft mouth on his own.
"I'm not so drunk that I don't know what I'm doing." Sanji tells him when he pulls away. His body is stretched awkwardly across the table and his hands are tangled in Zoro's short, sweat-slicked hair. "And it's not Nami I'm in love with."
It's not too hot for Zoro to reply, but words are too cumbersome on his slurred tongue so he has to improvise. Sanji will yell at him later for using the last of the olive oil to aid his confession, but he doesn't feel guilty about it since said love cook has his legs wrapped around his waist and his nails are scratching lines down his back that will be difficult to explain. Still, Zoro can't bring himself to care, especially when Sanji tenses in his arms and brokenly moans his name into the hot air, and even more so when Zoro follows. The strength leaves his arms and legs, and they crash in a breathless heap to the floor.
"It's good that you're better at this than you are at playing poker." Sanji teases him once they've caught their breath. He brushes the sweat from Zoro's forehead away and runs his fingertips over his cheekbones, down his jaw, along the line of his throat. "I was gambling when I threw my hand, you know."
The swordsman glares at the blond. "See if I ever play poker with you again." He says, and Sanji kisses his frowning mouth.
Zoro figures that it's too hot to stay angry with him, and kisses him back.
Disclaimer: One Piece © Oda Eiichiro
Author's Notes: That nine of spades gets Sanji laid in the end and I'm still shaky with my endings. (dies) Beta please?