Ninja to Pirate Till I See You Again
A/n: Sorry it took so long. Kinda working full-time right now and have little to know time to myself between chores around the house, not to mention all the reading I've been doing. Sorry again, I'm gonna try to update again before the end of the month, if not September definitely.
Originally there was a funny Luffy scene in here. But, because of space and that it didn't have any specifics in the plot line, I cut it out. One day, I hope to put it in a one-shot :)
"I am sorry for your lose."
"Do not be. If you hadn't stepped in, I would be dead and Amaterasu lost."
"Amaterasu would never have accepted Yuji as it's owner. Never could have. He doesn't have... Senju-san... Hold out your hand!' Startled, Akihiko jumped from Hashirama's grasp and turned to him eagerly. Strangely enough, he held forth his hand very trusting. "What I am about to give you... I'll be breaking many Yaikage Laws. Never speak of where you got it. Never."
"Alright." Curious, he watched as Akihiko reached up around his neck and unclasped a rough-hewn chain and held it out. "It's a pretty stone." It was a dark color that seemed to shift between different shades of blue and purple and anything in between.
"You saved my life more than once today by Yaikage morals... No, by my morals... I am forever in your debt. Take the Kage Necklace and may, by its blessings, deliver you to your dreams. Create a village where peace will be everlasting. Where the Clans can live in peace. Never forget this day and the words spoken here! But never speak of it! Remember your promise. Senju-san!"
"I was hoping, if you heard the story of my ancestor, you might change your mind about giving me this sword."
"Nope. Not a chance."
"As I feared. Still, it was nice to see this sword in my lifetime. In the flesh and not some drawn picture." Naruto had nothing to say. "Well, I guess... By the Heavens Boy, what is that around your neck!"
"Huh?!" Naruto looked down at himself in shock. Not seeing anything out of the ordinary.
Chapter 14: Flight From Loguetown
"Interesting." Sasuke now stood at the highest point within Loguetown, making sure to stay well out of the way of the roof-leaping searching for Hinata, and keeping an eye on Naruto's chakra signal so that he would not lose him. It was quite easy here, in face, as quite few people here had active chakra systems and the few that did, as far as he could see, had quite distinct ones. Even compared to Naruto's Kyuubi charged one which was quite something.
Right now, though, he wasn't consciously aware of Naruto's chakra signal, just keeping taps on it in the depths of his mind, but on a man with a light gray type of chakra running through his system, occasionally shifting into darker grays or to a color close to white. Almost smoke like, Sasuke would say.
He was walking. rather in a pissed-off-get-out-of-my-way-or-I'll-kill-you sort of way, down the streets of Loguetown. Occasionally shooting random glares at random people in the streets including at a little girl who bumped into him and dropped her ice cream. Her tears, though, seemed to melt him and he gave her a thin coin to buy another.
This man had only caught Sasuke's attention cause of what he, and a small insignificant man, had been talking about in his office, which Sasuke had been hiding above because of Tenten and Hinata's search had stayed away from this place, Sasuke had been shocked. They were speaking about Naruto and his new companions. And a little on Naruto's abilities now.
Sasuke had learned a lot from them and that made him grateful. It sure wasn't a conversation he would forget fast. Nor want to. At least while he's in this world. He was sure with this information tucked under his belt he would have a great advantage over Itachi when he showed up.
Even with this Smoker man after Naruto as well things may have gotten even easier for him. Who ever said good things never happened to him?
"Captain Smoker." A man, wearing the plain blue and white sleeveless uniform of Marine petty officer, saluted the sitting man as he walked into his office.
He was, when he was standing, a strikingly tall figure who wore hardly any of Marine uniform clothes. He wore the dark blue pants of the uniform and that was all. With it he wore a fur-lined open white coat that he had been embellished with the Marine logo. There was a rather permanent cloud of smoke that obscured the rough contours of his face which mainly came from the two or three cigars he kept in his mouth. There was a sword, a rather thick one, leaning lightly against his desk besides his feet, in easy reach if he were ever attacked at the base.
"What is it?" He growled out, a cloud of smoke wafting from his mouth and joining the others around his face. "Can't you see I'm busy here." Smoker didn't even bother to open his eyes to talk to the younger officer.
The young Marine nervously looked about the too clean office unsure of where his eyes should be but finally resting somewhere above where Smoker's head was, his arm holding the salute the entire time through. Only bringing it down when Smoker grunted once again in annoyance. "Sir. there's been a sighting of a pirate ship at the docks earlier today."
"Oh." He lazily puffed out a smoke ring, watching it disappear within the billowing clouds. or so the young Marine thought. "And?"
"A...and..." The Marine looked over the cloud of smoke and out the window at the open sea, trying desperately to clam his racing nerves and collect his thoughts from the recesses of his mind. "And they have docked..."
There was a loud bang as Smoker slammed his hands hard down on the oak desk, the impact clearing away the lingering smoke and thrusting his angry, iron clad face into clear view, his short gray-green hair blowing uneasily about his face. "And why wasn't I told sooner about this?"
"Eh...!? That is because, Captain Smoker..." The young Marine hastily cast about his mind for a reason that would satisfy the hotheaded man. he found none and decided on saying the truth. Though, he believed he already knew how Smoker would react to it. "They had only recently docked, sir, and the Watchers took a bit of time to send a messenger up here and-."
"Are they fools?" Smoker's feet, clad in worn shoes with metal soles, clanged as he leaped to his feet and started to pace the length of the desk. "Mad?" The smoke began to puff from his mouth in faster and larger puffs, his cigars practically evaporated in front of the Marine's eyes. "Do they not know the polices in this town?"
"Think? Who the hell gave you permission to think?"
"N-no one, Captain Smoker, sir." The young Marine hastily brought back up his salute, eyes shifting nervously about the room. "I-I just wanted to answer your question, sir."
"If I'm not lookin' at you, than I'm not talking to you, Petty Officer."
"Send for Tashigi immediately. Tell those incompetent fools down at the docks to secure the ship. And to expect a flogging later. Did those idiots ever say what crew it was? Obviously someone foolish enough to try the Grand Line."
"Yes, sir!" He agreed to the commands. "They said it was the Straw Hat Crew, sir."
"Who? Never heard of them." Smoker dismissed the name with a wave of his hand.
"Th-they're that new crew, Captain Smoker sir, that started that trouble in Cocoyashi, sir. We... we got the notice to be on the lookout for them last week from HQ."
A trace of smoke curled from his mouth and lazied it's way up to the ceiling before finally laying itself to a rest right above their heads. "Oh. Them. What were their names again?"
"Monkey D. Luffy and Uzumaki Naruto, sir." For the first time in the office, the young Marine actually looked excited about what they were talking about. "It says they destroyed half the down and took down Arlong's pirates for their own base. Monkey D. Luffy was placed a 30,000,000 Beli bounty and Uzumaki Naruto with 25,000,000 Beli bounty. Do you think they're really that strong, sir?"
"Don't know. but I'm bound to find out. It's interesting, isn't it boy? That such strong advisories come at such a time. Yes, I'll let myself play with them for a time," he raised his hand and smirked over it at his underling, "and, then, I'll crush them." There was a small popping sound as he brought his fist together to show what he meant.
"Boy! What is that?" Naruto hastily looked down at himself, He had taken off his overcoat and tossed that over the chair's back behind him. Under that he wore a plain black muscle tee-shirt and, for once, the necklace he had won from Tsunade was out and lay down his chest. He saw noting strange or different than normal on him.
"What's what?" He looked up at Yakine rather confused. "Yakine-san?"
"Naruto-kun... Where ever did you get this?" He lightly laid down Amaterasu unsheathed on the cooling working bench and made his way carefully around his tools to where Naruto still sat. He, with a questioning look Naruto's way, picked up the stone. He twirled the stone side to side so that it caught the light and reflected blue and purple streaks onto Naruto's chest. "It's beautiful." He looked suspiciously down at the younger man. "Is this what I think it is?"
Naruto didn't answer at first, looking down at the colors that played across his skin because of the stone. Eyes caressing it gently as the memory of how he got it ran through his mind. "I've had it for six years now. I won it in a bet against Baachan." How long had it been since he thought of Tsunade? Of his home? He didn't even have the chance to really think about Tenten and Hinata being here. Hadn't even thought of the consequences of them missing from the village. He rarely thought about the the village now. He thought of the friends he missed. He thought of his teachers. But not of the village.
And there was once a time where he thought of his home all the time.
Now he thinks of Nami. And Nojiko. And Cocoyashi as his home. He had changed in more ways than his strength and abilities. He just couldn't believe he hadn't noticed before now. What a fool he was.
Yakine's mouth twitched up at the corners as he looked down at the mesmerized boy, but he stifled it down before Naruto or Yuki could see. He needed to keep on his cold front. "Your necklace, Naruto-kun, seems very familiar to me. It looks almost identical to the sketches my ancestor did of his necklace."
"That-That's impossible." Naruto stated flatly, knocking Yakine's hand off the necklace and laying his hand protectively over it. "I'm sorry, but I'm in a bit of a hurry. If my sword is done, can I have it back?"
He looked at the blond boy hard, analyzing him, for a few more seconds before he gave a swift nod. With a quick turn on his heel, and another one around his staring son, he strode back towards the work bench and picked up Amaterasu. Yakine ran a careful, and loving, hand up and down the blade, making sure he had missed no cracks. Finally, he handed it slowly back to Naruto. "Here. Make sure you care for it. Take it straight to a blacksmith if it starts to crack again."
"Alright." Naruto smiled, a little coldly, at Yakine and slid the sword back into it's scabbard. "I'll do just that." He nodded goodbye at Yuki and his father. "Take care, ojisan. Ja, Yuki." He turned, swiping his jacket off the chair and swinging over his shoulder as he went, and made his way to the door.
"And Naruto?" Yakine called out as Naruto reached the doorway.
"Yeah?" He asked, turning back around with a quizzical expression on.
"Don't forget to take care of yourself either." Naruto nodded, the warmest smile he had yet to show them gracing his features.
"You too, ojisan." And then he walked out.
"Zoro!" Zoro jumped, dropping the mop he was using to clean the floors, and glared at the grinning blond sitting on the window sill kicking his heels. "I was wondering where you were, but I never through you would be at the Marine base. Cleaning their floors too no less! If you had wanted to clean so bad, I'm sure you could have scrubbed Going Merry's deck. Well, around the hole you created at least."
"It was your big head idiot!" Zoro kicked his water bucket across the distance at Naruto. Naruto laughed and ducked out of the way from the water and bucket. "I'm only here because you abandoned me with those two demons." After he had found his two swords, he had accidentally broken Tashigi's glasses. As he didn't have any money left she was having him clean here to pay for them. Especially because he refused to hand over one of his swords as payment. "If you hadn't left..."
"Oh... That reminds me." Naruto laughed, scratching his head carelessly in embarrassment.
"What happened to Tenten and Hinata?"
"How come you only call them Hina-chan and Tenten-neechan when their nearby?"
Naruto blinked. "Don't know. Anyway, isn't it time to head back to the ship?"
Zoro paused for a moment, looking down at the spilled mop and bucket and the work he should be doing, and, then, shrugging pushed the cleaning materials out of the way. "Yeah, the others are probably done by now."
"Good." Naruto nodded, please, and back flipped out of the window. "Marine bases give me the creeps." Zoro laughed in agreement, following him out the window without one guilty look at his unfinished work. "Do you think they're back yet?"
"Hopefully." Zoro rolled his shoulder blades, glad to finally be free of those tight constraints of the Marine Base. "Don't really feel like looking for any of them." Naruto nodded, smiling in agreement.
"Nami-chan!" Sanji called out. Laden down with several large bags of groceries and a giant horned fish, but he was ecstatic to see the orange haired girl even if she was already accompanied by Usopp. "Are you done with your shopping too? look, what I won. I thought I would make it for dinner tonight just for you." He held the fish closer to her as they made the down the street. "Did you get anything cute? Anything for me?"
"No." She answered rather shortly, turning on her heel and striding quickly down the street making Usopp, who was carrying all of her bags save two and his own, and Sanji pick up their pace to keep up with her. "I got what I needed and a little more. Have you seen Naruto by the way? I picked up several new pairs of pants and shirts for him. his were looking a little too frayed around the edges. He's so hard on his clothes with all the rough housing he does with you guys." Sanji smiled at the girl and shook his head despite the raising anger in his chest.
"Do you think the others are back yet?" Usopp groaned before they could continue the conversation as they reached the docked ship. With Sanji's and Nami's help, he managed to make it to the deck before he dropped the entire load alongside Sanji's on the top. "Ooh, my back hurts. Nami! What did you buy? A ton of bricks?" He wheezed out his own laughter but neither joined in.
"I doubt it." She slapped Usopp on the back, effectively drawing out his laughter into a long howl of pain. "They're a bunch of put-offs. Speaking of put-offs, I'm surprised I ran into the two of you so soon." The two face-fell but Nami didn't seem to notice. Or care. "It looks like it might rain, maybe the others will be back soon. Place gives me the creeps with all the Marines around town. Hopefully, none of them got into any trouble."
"Well," Lazily, Sanji reached into his jacket and pulled out a smoke, "Marines shouldn't be all that interested in a small crew like ours that hasn't made a name for ourselves." He lit it and took a long drag. "No honor taking us in."
Nami bit her lip, there was a small part of her gut telling her that he was wrong. "Maybe." She hoped. The sky above had darkened quickly with their talk as thick black storm clouds moved in from the sea. There was a rumble of deep thunder and rain drops began to fall. "We better hurry and get this put away before all of it gets soaked." She sighed at the thought of all her new clothes getting ruined or washed away. And what would happen if it was the food? "Come on, guys." They nodded and began to help her pull the bags into the kitchen and out of the rain. No more words were spoken between them as a dark close to night descended on them.
"Wow!" The wind had risen drastically and Luffy found himself fighting it for the ownership of his straw hat. He had both hands clamped down tightly on his hat as he looked up at the towering scaffold where his hero, the King of Pirates, Gold Roger died. "Amazing! I wanna go to the top!" Luffy banged his feet a couple times down on the ground in a wasted effort to release some of his pent up excitement.
As the townspeople hurried out of the main square to leave the harsh rain and into warm homes, Luffy looked up at the scaffold. He wondered how he would get to the top. Maybe because of all the warnings Nami had given them all before they made port to not draw attention to themselves, but Luffy decided to get to the top the old fashioned way, climbing it, instead of shooting his rubber arms to the top and catapulting himself along with it. It would be a steep climb, and very long, with very little foot holds set far apart.
"Monkey D. Luffy!" Luffy's foot had already been placed on the lowest rung when the voice called out to him, rough and rather high. "We meet again at long last!" Slowly, a little miffed that someone was interrupting him, he brought his foot back down and turned back around with a pout on his face. He faced Naruto and Zoro with several other men that looked vaguely familiar to him. Almost all of them looked like clowns or circus performers. "What are you going to do now that we have your friends?"
All Luffy did was blink at the man with the red nose and green hair who seemed to be their leader. Ringleader? "Who are you?" The man screamed in frustration but Luffy's attention was already taken away from him and back to his two friends. "Naruto! Zoro! Are these weirdos friends of yours?"
"Who are you calling a weirdo?!"
"Luffy..." Zoro and Naruto sighed together as the man called Buggy went on his little rampage around and around the small group. "How can you not remember Buggy?"
"How can you not remember me?" Buggy screamed, tugging hard at his hair.
"Ah! You're Buggy!" Luffy screamed, a hand on his head in distress. "Wait! Naruto... isn't Buggy a little man with a red nose not a big one?"
"Who the hell has a red nose?" Buggy's voice was even higher than normal and his eyes bugged out as he looked at the black haired man. "Never mind, it doesn't matter." He smiled mischievously at Luffy. "In a little while you will remember me for all eternity and my face will be etched into your mind. You and your friends here too!" Buggy shot them, directed more at Naruto a spiteful look, "As you three rest in your graves!" He threw back his head and gave out a large bark of manic laughter.
Naruto shared a look of exasperation with Zoro. Both men quickly put their fists in their mouths to stifle their laughter at Buggy's expense.
"So... What do you plan to do with us?" Zoro interrupted before Naruto, or Luffy, could say something stupid that would add to the danger they were in.
"Isn't that obvious?" He turned from Luffy for the first time and face Zoro head on, smirking in a way to make Zoro feel stupid but all he felt was a raising anger. "To pay you three back in the best way, to get my busted pride back, I must... Kill you!"
"Oh... that's all?"Naruto yawned, dramatically letting everyone know he was bored. "I thought you might actually say something original."
"Naruto, you..." Zoro started to say with a surprised expression on his face. The Naruto he had believed he knew would react with panic, where was that boy? Zoro never got the chance to finish his sentence as a scream rent through the air.
"Buggy... You... Will... Never... Do... Such... A... Thing... To... My... Burondo... No... Ouji!"(1) The speaker was a tall woman with very pale skin and black hair that reached past her shoulders (1). She wore a white bra and jeans with a blue blouse tied about her waist and heels that made her look even taller. Most would call her a stunning beauty, which could be attested by the small crowd of men who followed a little closely behind her.
"Oh, no." Naruto's tan, made from his countless never ending hours in the sun, paled as he looked up at her. "That's back."
"Ah... My Burondo no Ouji!" The woman screamed, seeing Naruto standing listlessly between two of Buggy's crew. "Get away from him fool!" And pulling a mace from beneath the long coat she wore, she attacked the two men who, though both were physically stronger than her, did nothing to stop her attacks. They quickly backed away from her and, along with Zoro's guards, stood beside Zoro. "Are you alright my love? Did these fool hurt my precious Burondo no Ouji? If they did... I'll kill them for you." Naruto shuddered at the sweet look on her face.
"No... No thanks."He cursed himself for dragging Zoro into that store. Just because it had some tasty looking food and it smelled really good and he was so hungry after spending the whole day in that shop. He was bored too.
Of course, when Buggy saw him and Naruto he had immediately ordered their arrest. While they tried to protect themselves using the blunts of their swords and their fists, she had walked in. Seeing the fight, she was disappointed in Buggy and his men. When she was told that these were two of the Straw Hat Crew. Naruto had to chose, at that time, to use a weaker form of the resengan to blow off Buggy's crew from him. Illuminated by the Kyuubi's chakra, lent to him from the fox's own anger, and panting and sweating heavily the woman had leaped at him and tackled him to the ground. Without even asking for his name she began to call him those hated word. Burondo no Ouji.
Then, he and Zoro were Buggy's prisoners. Correctly, Zoro was Buggy's prisoner and Naruto was the strange woman's.
It wasn't like he knew the catastrophe his actions would cause. It's not like he planned to meet Buggy and this equally strange woman there. It wasn't like he planned to have her claim him as her own. As her Ouji. For once he had the attention he wanted from a beautiful girl, all the things he used to dream about at the academy, and he wanted to go right back to the way he was. Dejected, lonely, and ignored. Heavens, he hoped Nami never found out.
"Now, Buggy." After hugging Naruto tight to her for another moment she let him go and, forcefully slipping her hand in his dragged him over to the clown-like man. "I have already told you. I will help you kill Straw Hat and any others you chose but... I... Will... Not... Let... You... Hurt... My... Love! Do you understand?"
"Sure, sure." Buggy looked just as annoyed by this development as Naruto was. And just as disgusted.
"Monkey D. Luffy." She turned from Buggy to Luffy, with Naruto's hand still firmly clasped in hers, and smiled at him sharply. "It's been quite a long time. How have you been? How do I look?"
Luffy blinked at her. "Who are you?"
The woman flipped her black hair, making the rain glisten as it ran down its length, and revealed her long neck. "It's not surprising that you don't recognize me. I have changed after all. Very much so in fact." For the first time since she showed up in the square, she freed her hand from Naruto's and walked forward towards Luffy. "Once I had called myself the world's most beautiful woman. Through the pain I have adored, all the lonely nights with no man to comfort me, and days on days of eating no food, I have gained power beyond my imagination. Skin so smooth, it should be a sin. Perfect in all ways. So many curves." She giggled girlishly. "My beauty can only be sent by Kami-sama as a reward. For now, am I not the world's most beautiful woman?" The men who followed her each shouted their agreement up to the world. "Maybe I'm know even more than the world's most beautiful woman. Maybe I'm the universe?" They shouted their agreement up the sky. She giggled.
Hey, boy. The Kyuubi chuckled, watching the black haired woman. Who's the woman?
If you're not going to pay attention, don't ask. Naruto groaned when she turned her attention back on him. She flounced back towards him and looped an arm around his neck, planting a kiss on his cheek. Naruto barely managed to hold in his shudder of revolt. Why me? "Is there any reason you have your arm around me?" His voice was low and cold, as if he had no emotions, as if he didn't care one way or another.
The Kyuubi chuckled. Interesting. You finally got a beautiful woman to look at you and look what you're doing! Acting so put off.
Shut up, idiot fox. He warned, mentally glaring at him and physically glaring at the woman.
She giggled. "My Burondo no Ouji! Always acting so tough and manly." She threw both arms tight around him this time and even tighter against her body. "Just the way I like my men."
Oh help me, fox. Naruto rolled his eyes.
What exactly do you want me to do? He chuckled darkly. I could let out all of my chakra and give her a scare to see you in that form.
And, in the process, kill both me and you. He reminded the nine-tailed demon. "I'm not yours." She's not the one I want.
That's so like you, boy. Naruto sent a silent question towards the fox. He answered with a dark chuckle. To not see all that you have around you, the beautiful girl who worships you, and go towards someone that acts like they hate you. Like that pink-haired girl.
Are you saying I'm masochistic?
Ooh, you know a big word.
Never mind. I don't know why I'm asking you.
"Just wait and see. The two of us will stand at the top of this world as the most beautiful woman and man there has ever been. Oh, how I pity those who don't have such shiny skin as I do. Or a boyfriend as handsome as mine." Or maybe I still need that help. But all he got was a laugh as the Kyuubi twirled on his feet and flipped it's tail, going back to sleep with his back to him. Thanks oh so much.
"Right, but you've yet to tell me who you are?" Naruto jumped, lost in the world of his conversation with the Kyuubi and he had forgotten all the others who stood there.
She laughed high, letting Naruto go and turning away from him. "Of course, you wished to know who this beautiful woman in front of you. And I shall tell you. I am the one, the only, Alvida." Even Naruto face planted at this. Sure, he had heard of her, had even come close to meeting her a few times, but from what he heard about her... No, these two images don't match.
"Ah! You mean that old, ugly hag!" And with Luffy's careless words the woman's beautiful facade fell away and Naruto saw her true nature. Just as ugly as she once was! She ran after the evasive Luffy with her mace, calling him foul names.
"Buggy! Kill him! Kill him now!"
"It's like he disappeared off the face of the planet." Tenten and Hinata, both drenched so that their clothes stuck to them like a second skin, as they stepped out of the rain into a crowded bar. "Sir, two ciders this way please." She and Hinata were true ninjas and didn't believe with drinking alcohol on the job and this was a job. No matter how long it took they would protect Naruto like Tsunade requested. "Where could that blond have gone?"
"I'm sure he's fine." Hinata took the lead and began to squeeze her way through the crowd to the only empty table in the house, set back into a lonely corner. Her Tenten sat down with a quick glance left and right to make sure they could talk normally with no fear of being overheard. "You know how Naruto is."
"Rash and doesn't think." They finished together with a exasperated sigh.
"But still," Tenten continued her train of thought propping her chin on her laced hands, "he learned some new tricks out here all on his own. Chakra camouflage, some tricky escape clone thing, and swordsmanship." A young barman came over with a smile on his face as he handed the two girls their drinks. Tenten smiled back at him in thanks and he backed away from them, bumping into the other patrons. As soon as he was out of their line of vision both Tenten and Hinata let out giggles.
"That's exactly the type of thing Neji-nii gets mad about." Hinata mock scolded Tenten.
Tenten lowered her eyes to the drink and thought on Neji. "Yeah, well... Neji can't really take a joke." She twirled the contents of the mug around a couple times before she brought it up to her lips and drank deeply. "Anyway, back to Naruto. I can't help but wonder how he learned it, here and all without a teacher."
"True..." Hinata daintly sipped on her cider, leaning her head back and staring up at the ceiling. "Swordsmanship.... that would be easy to find a teacher for. The other things though.... those are, and always will be, only shinobi skills. For all we know though, some nin could be hiding themselves away here."
Tenten nodded her agreement, finishing the last of her cider up. "Well, hurry it up, Hina. There's nothing we can do but go search for him." Hinata made a sound of agreement in her throat and, after chugging down the remainder of her drink, stood up. "Not that I really want to go back out in this rain."
Laughing, Hinata tossed down a couple of belis for their drinks and they fought their way back to the door. The lightning flashed as they reached it and Hinata, out of habit, covered her hand over her eyes. "What is that?" She heard Tenten whisper.
"Hm?" Hinata quickly uncovered her eyes and looked where Tenten was staring but the sky had turned back to black and that was all that she could see. "What did you see, Tenten-chan?"
"I don't know. Nothing probably but..."
"You probably just saw the old scaffold." The young bartender was back, hastily dumping his load of dirty mugs and plates on a side of the bar before coming and standing by the two girls. "It resides in the main square. It's a great tourist attraction," white teeth flashed as he looked down half the foot at Tenten, "the place where Gold Roger had died."
"Gold Roger... Could that be...?"
"You know, Gold Roger. The famous pirate king who brought about this pirate age with One Piece." He cut in, casually leaning against the door frame to better look at Tenten.
"Your name is Tenten, then. Quite a cute name, but I don't think it suits a beautiful girl like you."
"Really?" Tenten smiled most sweetly up at the tall youth. "My boyfriend tells me different." After hearing about her boyfriend, the young man backed off hastily. One pretty girl was not enough to risk getting beating up over.
"Boyfriend, hm?" Hinata hummed, looking at Tenten from the corner of her eye. "Could that be my niisan?"
"Focus!" Tenten smacked Hinata on the head and set off on a jog to the square. "That scaffold was where Luffy was visiting today and if my instincts are right, he's in trouble." That figure she saw on the scaffold it was undoubtedly what she thought. One man getting ready to execute another. That had to be Luffy!
"Do you have last words, Monkey D. Luffy?" Buggy laughed cruelly as he stood above Luffy with a sword poised over his head.
"Yeah!" Luffy jumped up and down on his knees. "This is so cool. I'm standing where Gold Roger did right before he died."
"If you want to think of it that way... Go right ahead. Enjoy your last moments of happiness in the cold hard rain. May they last you for all eternity!" Buggy laughed cruelly then, lifting up his sword up and preparing to bring it down on Luffy's neck. "Even if you're made of rubber, a sword will go clean through you."
"Yep!" Luffy nodded. "Sure will."
"Luffy... You're not supposed to tell that to someone trying to kill you." Zoro shook his head, feeling around for the swords that weren't there but strapped to one of his four guards. Naruto, trapped within Alvida's arms, began to charge up his chakra. If Luffy did not break out, he would!
"What was that Zoro?!" Luffy stretched his head out over the ledge, trying to catch what Zoro said. "Wanna repeat that?!"
"Will you stop messing around!! I'm trying to kill you here!"
"Good, boy. Now.... Prepare to die!" Luffy nodded and smiled, humming a little tune about eating to himself. Smiling, Buggy lifted his sword high above his head and brought it down. There was a loud clang as a metal kunai hit it straight on, knocking the sword clean from his hands and sending it flying to the ground. Buggy gasped and jumped for it, barely grabbing it and stopping himself from falling after it. "Who did that?! Speak up now or I'll kill you all!"
"Who the hell do you think you are?! Attacking that boy!"Tenten panted out, three more kunai's ready in her hand to throw at Buggy if he made another move towards Luffy. "And Naruto... What the hell do you think you're doing?! Can't you see your friend is in trouble?"
"Do not talk to my Burondo no Ouji like that! And, sweetie," she said, cuddling Naruto's face next to hers, "the name Naruto doesn't really suit you. You'll have to change that."
"Let go of Naruto-kun, now." Hinata stepped up besides Tenten with her Byakugan blazing. "Tenten-chan, you rescue Luffy. I'll rescue Naruto-kun and Zoro-san." Tenten nodded and began to run at her fastest pace towards the scaffold.
"Stop them this instant!" Buggy ordered his men, bringing up his sword towards Luffy. "I'll kill this fool, one way or another!"
Tenten was surrounded by Buggy's men, all of lesser skill than her and with her full arsenal she could defeat them easily but she didn't have that but a few odds and ends, before she could even throw another projectile Buggy's way. She would have to fight her way to him.
Hinata was busy with her own problems to help out Tenten much. Alvida had attacked the smaller girl with her full mace and Hinata was busy dodging the attacks and aiming smaller, more damaging, blows at odd places in Alvida's body. But her hands slid right off. "How do you like the like powers Sube Sube no Mi gave me? Jealous?" Hinata's answer was to growl deep in her throat and renew her attacks with a new vigor.
Naruto, as Alvida was busy with Hinata and no longer clinging to him, made his way stealthily over to Zoro's guards and knocked them out one by one. He managed to grab Zoro's three swords before that guard toppled over and he handed them over to his green haired friend with a smirk.
"Thanks." Zoro said grudgingly
"No problem." They smiled. "We should probably save Luffy now." Zoro nodded in agreement. "I'll go help Tenten, they'll be in our way anyway. Can you help Hinata, then?"
"What... Don't you want to hurt your new girlfriend?" Naruto scowled and ran to where Tenten was still fighting off twenty men, pulling his sword free and readying his chakra up for a mass attack. Zoro did the same, heading straight for the black haired woman's back.
Far above them, Luffy was struggling to free himself from Buggy. He bit Buggy's leg and earned a heavy kick to his stomach. He rolled away from him, dodging the sword that was now swinging recklessly above his head, trying to detach it from his body. Finally, after more than five minutes of struggling, Buggy managed to corner the boy at the edge of the scaffold where he had two options; to fall and risk death (Buggy forgot that he was made of rubber) or death by Buggy's hand.
At that moment, what would be referred to the five forever as nothing short of a miracle, lightning crashed down onto the scaffold and sent it up in a blaze of fire. Both Buggy and Luffy were sent flying off the scaffold. The people below scurried out of the way, afraid to be crushed by either a body or the rapidly falling down scaffold.
Zoro, Naruto, Tenten, and Hinata were by Luffy in a second, helping him to his feet as he brushed himself free of the debris. Buggy's men, and a sour looking Alvida, rushed off towards where Buggy fell, twitching, five feet away. Each stood protectively over their captains so they had time to get themselves back up to their feet and ready for the second round of their fight. Luffy did, Buggy didn't.
"We're right by the entrance. If we run... we may be able to make it!" Tenten whispered to them. keeping a close eye on the enemy, watching out for the telltale movements to signify the beginning of their attacks. They made no move as of yet, too busy fussing over their unconscious captain. "They may not come after us with Mr. Red Nose down."
"Don't be so sure." Zoro muttered to Tenten. "That had Alvida had the biggest crush on Naruto. Heavens knows what she'll do to keep him."
Tenten glanced at Naruto with a disgrunteled expression on her face. "Fine, then.... Well, leave him."
"Tenten-neechan!" Naruto whined, clinging his arms around her own. "You can't leave me here with that."
"Jeez... I was only joking." Tenten hastily patted the blond boy on the head, feeling a heavy glare aimed her way from the black haired woman. "Tsunade-sama did send us here to protect you after all, idiot."
"Well, we can't leave Naruto and they don't look much up to a fight so... we'll run." And with that the five began to run heavily towards the opening of the alley. They must make it to the ship!
"Wait! Right there!" They had barely even gone three steps when a man steeped in clouds of smoke stepped out of the shadows of the night and barred their way. "You are Monkey D. Luffy and Uzumaki Naruto, correct? Captain and member of he Straw Hat Crew." He didn't look at the three others people by them, but kept his eyes firmly on Luffy and Naruto. "The ones with a thirty thousand and twenty-five thousand bounties?"
"I have a bounty? Really? So cool!"
"Luffy, I don't think now is the time to celebrate. We need to get out of here and fast." Naruto nodded in agreement to Zoro's words, though inside he was a little glad to hear of his bounty, and the two of them drew forth their swords. "Luffy, Naruto and I will take care of them. You..."
"Roronoa Zoro!" Tashigi appeared behind behind Smoker, her sword brandished in her hand. When she saw Zoro, she ran at him with her sword lashing wildly at him. Zoro blocked each blow using two of his swords. He parried her blows, with a few of his own, making sure to not use his full strength on the weaker girl. "Why did you lie to me? Why didn't you tell me who you are? Turn your swords over to me!"
"I didn't lie!" Zoro argued back, his swords flashing with light as he once again blocked a blow aimed for his chest. "You never even asked for my name! And I won't hand over my swords." He pushed her sword back towards her with his own swords. "Not now, not ever, and not to anyone." She stumbled back and tripped over her own feet, sprawling out on her back.
Naruto and the others shared a look. During Zoro's fight with Tashigi, they had left a wide spot in which they could dash to freedom, to the Going Merry. They nodded and made that wild dash, grabbing hold of Luffy and Zoro, who were just staring there looking at their enemies. "To the Going Merry!" Naruto shouted, laughter dancing in his eyes.
"To the Going Merry!" The others shouted back.
"Wait!" Of course their pursuers weren't ready to give up on them. After pulling Tashigi to her feet, she and Smoker set off on a run after them. Buggy and his crew close behind. "No pirates have ever escaped from here after catching my eye. Don't think you'll be the first!"
"Gomu Gomu no Pistol." Luffy turned on the heel of his foot and aimed an attack right at Smoker's head. Smoker smirked and made no move to dodge it. It hit him square on the chin, knocking his face back but, then, it went straight through his head. Shocked and more than a little horrified, Luffy tried to pull his hand free from Smoker's face.
It didn't come free. In fact, it seemed to reform around his fist. "Do you like it?" Luffy wasn't sure if he was more revolted or fascinated when Smoker started talking as if Luffy's hand wasn't inside his head. "This is my power that the devil fruit gave me. I ate the Moku Moku no Mi. My power is over all things made of smoke."
"Shit, Luffy!" Zoro and Naruto shouted together, turning on their heels and rushing back towards where Smoker had him trapped.
"No!" Luffy pulled his hand free with a rough tug from Smoker's skin and tried punching him again, this time through his stomach. "Go on ahead I'll catch up! Tell the others to start the ship!" The two nodded slowly, and turned their backs on their captain. At least for a little while, he can take care of himself.
"Fool! You'll never defeat me!" Smoker grabbed hold of Luffy's arm and, with a great tug, sent him flying over his own head and crashing into the ground. Luffy sprang back to his feet and brought his hands up into a classic boxer's position. "I, who is made up entirely of smoke. I, who can reform my body around any attack. Gun shots, sword swings, punches, anything. None shall effect me."
"And your point?" Luffy asked, as he ran forward and pounded hole after hole in his flesh with his punches. "I shall find your weakness eventually."
"Do you not understand?" Smoker's body began to emit more smoke and at an even faster pace that quickly surrounded Luffy. He coughed and tried to punch away the suffocating fog. It didn't work, the fog would be blown away for a few moments and Luffy will be able to catch a few fresh breaths but it would come back and even stronger than before. "Your attacks have no effect on me! You..."
A man wearing a long green cloak that covered him head to toe appeared in front of the fighting duo, facing outwards toward Smoker with his back to Luffy. "Run, boy. Leave this man to me." A strange wind blew about the street way and pushed Smoker back a few inches. "Smoker, how I've longed to fight you."
With out listening to another word that came from the strange man, Luffy set off after the friends he had sent off only moments before. His feet splashed in an endless rhythm trough the many puddles that littered the ground. He ran so fast that he managed to get close enough to make out the larger forms of Naruto and Zoro and the smaller forms of the two girls. "Naruto! Zoro! Matte!"
"Luffy!" Naruto sighed out with relief on seeing his friend in one piece. "You defeated him already!"
"Nope! Some guy jumped in and tagged me out." He smiled largely at them. "Are we almost at the port?"
"Not so fast!" What seemed to be close to a hundred Marines rushed to close off their exit to the port. Now, they had no where to go. Marines to the front and the Marine Captain Smoker at their behind.
"Naruto, I think they're challenging our skills." Zoro looked over his shoulder at Naruto, grinning devilishly as he pulled out his gleaming Wado Ichimonji. His first Meitou. "Shall we play a bit with them?"
Naruto matched Zoro's grin with a wide one of his own. He pulled forth Amaterasu and held it straight out towards the Marines. "Sure. Why not? I can use the exercise, after all."
Zoro agreed with a laugh. "How 'bout a game?" Naruto raised his eyebrows in question. "Let's see who can take down the most men."
"And the loser?"
"Say they do what the other wishes."
"Sure. I won't lose anyway."
"Keep dreaming, Uzumaki."
"Ha! I'm gonna make you wear a tutu, Roronoa." Both grinned manically at one another before turning sharply on their heels and running straight at the astonished Marines. "Isshun no suchiru (2)." Naruto stepped sharply to the left as he hit the wall of Marines, using his speed and chakra to send a flashier version of his own sword out made of purple chakra, a combination on his and the Kyuubi's. It ripped through them with a great tear and more than ten of them fell down from the feel of it on their skins.
Zoro himself started out slowly, attacking one enemy at a time but, slowly, he began to pick it up. Cutting down two at a time when he pulled out his second third. Then, three as he picked up his pace. Finally it was six or more with all three swords flashing with the last outside, using his trademark attacks as they fell like leaves in fall. Soon, he and Naruto finished the majority of their enemies. They rest all fled along the shoreline. It was a rather amusing sight.
"So... Zoro, do you admit defeat?" Naruto laughed out loud as they ran quickly down the docks towards their waiting ship.
"What the hell are you talking about? It's so obvious I won!" Zoro argued back. "I did!" He shouted as Naruto laughed heavily at him. "I took down more than half of those fools."
"Sure." Naruto agreed with a swift nod. "But only in your dreams." Naruto dodged as Zoro swiped a hand at his head and quickly ran up the side of the ship with his chakra charged feet and right into Nami's waiting hands.
"What the hell took you all so long to get here?" She shouted into his ear as she shook him about his neck. The others stealthily climbed on board.
"No time for that, Nami-san." Tenten stepped in before she could send the already blue Naruto into the world of death. "These fools got into some trouble with clowns and then Marines and they're all in pursuit."
"Clowns?" Sanji and Usopp asked with raised eyebrows.
"Buggy." Zoro stretched.
"Shit! Sanji, Usopp hoist our sails. Zoro heft our anchor. Luffy stay out of the way for now. And one of you two revive Naruto for me please." She waved a little towards him before going to help Sanji and Usopp who were struggling with the sail's ropes. "Tell him to go take watch in the crow's nest."
And the Straw Hats were off for the Grand Line, all packed and all set.
(1)- Burondo no Ouji basically means my Blond Prince.
(2)- Isshun no suchiru means 'Flash of steel'- couldn't really think of a better name
So, they all made it safetly out of Loguetown, big surprise right. But their troubles have only just begun.