And here it is, the last instalment in this fic. I hope you have enjoyed it and that you like this ending.
Not So Bad After All
Zoro stared at her, fighting the urge to run. She stared back, a look of startled confusion on her round face. A few seconds ago Zoro had been innocently standing by the punch table minding his own business. Johnny and Yosaku had disappeared halfway through the dance and Zoro wouldn't be surprised to find them in the nearest unlocked closet, not that he was going to go looking for them. He could see the rest of his friends on the dance floor, holding each other close as a slow, romantic song played over the speakers. Through the crowded masses he could easily spot Luffy and Nami and was surprised to see a worried expression on his best friend's face. He scanned the area around the pair but there didn't seem to be any danger, he was contemplating what could be bothering Luffy when someone knocked into him from behind pushing him forward. Turning around with a glare he froze when he saw who it was.
"I'm so sorry, I am such a klutz. Can you see my glasses? I need my glasses."
Zoro noticed the red glasses floating in the punch bowl and he delicately fished them out, holding them gingerly between his thumb and forefinger he held them in front of her face. He nearly laughed out loud when she pushed them on only to yank them off as punch started to drip down her face. She wiped the glasses and her face off with a napkin before putting them back on and turning to face him.
"Thank yo- you!"
Any hopes that she wouldn't recognize him vanished and Zoro just stood there not sure what to do.
"What are you doing here?" Tashigi demanded, her suspicions rising as they always did around him.
"This is my prom. I am supposed to be here, what's your excuse?"
"Your prom? Oh right this is Grand Line's prom. Me? I'm a chaperone of sorts. Smoker, Hina, me and a couple others are here to make sure things don't get out of hand."
Zoro hadn't actually seen Smoker around, but he had seen Ace sneak in through a window so he had figured the cop had been here somewhere. He nodded his head slowly, wishing there was an excuse for him to leave, being around the sergeant made him fidgety. He came up with nothing and he continued to stand there awkwardly while Tashigi's eyes darted around seeming to be having the same issue. They had run into each other more times than he cared to remember and sometimes it was quite literal. Back when he was on the street she had broken up several fights that involved him and he had even bumped into her at the dojo a handful of times. She was a swordswoman with impressive talent and normally he would relish a good fight with someone of her skill but he couldn't bring himself to fight this woman. She bore a striking resemblance to a ghost from his past and every time she raised her sword he turned and fled.
"I should probably go check outside..." Tashigi finally blurted turning to leave.
Zoro was about to sigh in relief when her foot got tangled on the table leg and she came crashing forward. Zoro instinctively opened his arms to catch her fall and they ended in some sort of weird half-hug. Zoro saw her cheeks redden and knew his were doing the same when he heard someone clear their throat behind him. Tashigi pulled out of his arms straightening her jacket and glasses. Zoro slowly looked over his shoulder and directly into a pair of azure eyes shining with some emotion Zoro couldn't decipher.
Zoro had managed to get through the entire dinner without looking for her in the room, not that it mattered her presence radiated a heat to him and he knew she was at a table in the back right corner of the room. He had known that there would be teachers here but he had never stopped to think that she would be one of them. If he had known she was going to be there and in a dress like that he would have faked illness and to hell with this whole prom.
Dishes were cleared away and Vivi made her way up to the podium in the front of the room to make a short speech. She thanked all the members of the prom committee for organizing the night as well as the teachers who had offered to chaperone. Then she introduced the slide presentation the committee had put together of some "special and memorable events of the year." Zoro watched the pictures flash by without paying too much attention. There were several shots of the students at different events that were held throughout the year and he noticed embarrassed that he was in one or two of them.
"I don't think there is a single one of you smiling." Vivi teased beside him.
He was about to growl at the bluenette, who had returned to her seat, when the next picture caught his attention.
"You don't look to happy yourself in that one." He smirked at her and watched as first the colour drained from her face and then it flushed a deep scarlet.
Up on the screen was a picture of Vivi standing on a cafeteria chair her arm raised while shooting a death glare at a mass of squealing girls. It was from the Friend Auction. She let out a slight moan and her head sank into her hands in embarrassment while Zoro chuckled lightly. Sanji moved to take her into his arms whispering something into her ear that seemed to calm her down and make her smile softly at him. They came together in a sickeningly sweet kiss and Zoro turned away disgusted only to gape at the next picture on the screen.
There up for the entire graduating class to see was Zoro holding a soaking wet Robin to his chest an intense look of concern visible on his face. He fought the sudden urge to bolt as well as the urge to find out who took the picture and ram their camera down said photographer's throat. A wolf whistle that sounded suspiciously like Ace's rang out across the room and Zoro groaned wishing his green hair didn't make him so easy to spot. Dozens of eyes at least, turned to look at him with expressions of mixed interest and that wasn't even counting the ones at his table.
"Zoro I didn't know that happened." Luffy said innocently.
"What were you doing to that fair maiden?" Sanji growled.
"Leave him alone guys, she panicked in the water and he saved her." Nami said calmly.
Zoro shot an appreciative look at his unusual ally and judging by the twinkle in her chocolate eyes she understood with clarity exactly what was going on in his head. After what seemed like ages the picture changed and people turned their attention back to the show. The slide show continued without too much drama, a few more pictures of the gang showing up before it finally came to an end playing some cheesy graduation song about remaining friends.
Half an hour later the dance had started and was in full swing people bumping together on the crowded dance floor. He had been dragged out by Luffy and was begrudgingly moving slightly to the upbeat music pulsing out of the speakers. Luffy grinned and danced around enthusiastically, bobbing between him and Nami. The song switched to a slow one and Zoro used the chance to escape off to the side of the room. He was leaning against a wall when he noticed her.
She was sitting at a table in the back watching the couples come together on the floor with a look that resembled longing and Zoro found himself heading over to her before he could think about it. She looked a little startled when he sank into a seat beside her.
"Mr Roronoa. Hi."
"Are you enjoying your night?"
"It's alright, I wish that picture hadn't been up there."
"Yes, that was rather unfortunate."
Zoro wasn't sure exactly what to do, he hadn't had any real plan when he came over here and he suddenly wished he had. Ace's words from the other day came back to him and he figured he might as well go for it.
"Would you like to dance?" he blurted out.
Robin looked startled for a minute before all emotions were tucked away behind those eyes and he could feel her shutting down and pulling away from him.
"No. You're a student, just a boy. Nothing can happen between us."
The words were spoken without emotion and their coldness pierced Zoro's heart and he knew without a doubt in that moment that he had his answer to the question Ace had asked. Not that is seemed to matter since she clearly wasn't interested. Robin rose from the table, excusing herself she crossed the room disappearing in the crowds and Zoro didn't bother to search her out. After awhile he got up and headed over to the punch table hoping that someone had managed to spike it by now.
Sanji held Vivi close as the last few chords of the song played out. He was in heaven, having her in his arms held against his chest, nothing else mattered and he briefly wondered why he
had ever bothered to look at a different girl. While there were many beautiful girls in gorgeous dresses crowding the banquet hall tonight, and while he knew most would die to get a chance to dance with him, he only had eyes for her. To him she was simply put, the most beautiful woman in the room. He felt he should personally thank her designer for she was stunning in the dress he had created. She looked like a Greek princess and so he treated her like one. However she could have been dressed like a street urchin and he still would find her breathtaking and treat her like a princess.
"Would you like to keep dancing or would you like to take a break?" he asked leaning in close to be heard over the music.
"A break sounds wonderful."
Sanji swept her up in his arms and crossed over to their now empty table. Vivi was giggling in his ear and making half-hearted protests to put her down. He put her down gently on her chair and placed a soft kiss to her smiling lips.
"Would you like a beverage my dear?"
"Yes please, I can come get it myself though."
"There is no need my angel. Just rest your beautiful feet here and I shall be back in no time."
He twirled off happily to fetch her drink coming back quickly so as not to keep her waiting. Tonight was certainly going on his list of more treasured nights, right up there with the night she had "bought" him. He was ecstatic that she had agreed to being his girlfriend and her reaction when he had arrived at her house was going to be in his dreams for several nights.
They sat together through several more songs, talking and laughing easily as the night wore on.
"You're coming back with the others, right Sanji-kun?" Vivi asked suddenly.
Everyone was planning on heading back to Vivi's place after prom for a sleepover of sorts. Sanji doubted that there would be much sleeping however. Sanji was planning on coming, however her question reminded him of something on his mind that he wanted to share with her, sooner rather than later.
"Of course Vivi-chan. There was something I wanted to discuss though."
Vivi looked up at him confusion in her eyes.
"I know a lot of people will be having sex tonight and a lot of guys expect it after prom." Vivi's eyes widened slightly and Sanji continued, "I know we haven't been going out that long, but I have loved you for many years and while I would love to show you how much I care for you I don't think we should have sex yet."
"Is that okay?" Sanji asked concerned.
"It's fine. I think that's a wonderful idea Sanji-kun."
Sanji could sense there was something else she wanted to add and he encouraged her gently, wanting her to always be open with him.
"Did you mean it? The other part that is."
Sanji knew instantly what she was referring to and a smile broke out on his face.
"Yes. I love you deeply Vivi."
"Oh Sanji, I love you too." Vivi replied, throwing her hands around his neck.
Robin watched as the other woman removed herself from Zoro's arms her face a bright red. She met Zoro's eyes briefly before tearing them away before he could read anything in them. She landed her gaze back on the cute police sergeant smiling politely.
"Is there a problem Sergeant?"
"What? Uh no, no problem."
Robin continued to smile politely while wanting to shove her cute little glasses down her throat. The surge of jealousy was sudden and unexpected and Robin had no clue how to go about handling it. She had spotted the two talking from across the room and had come over
telling herself that as a teacher it was her duty to make sure her students weren't in trouble. Then she had seen the sergeant in Zoro's strong arms and this jealousy had showed up uninvited.
She had no right to this jealousy, Zoro wasn't hers and he certainly didn't deserve it, especially after the way she had so coldly turned him down. When he had come over and asked her to dance she had wanted to say yes, she would love to step into his embrace and forget the world but she couldn't. When that picture had come on the screen she had had a realization so crystal clear and definite that she had nearly dropped her glass. Robin had fallen head over heels in love with Zoro and there was nothing she could do about it.
She had panicked and the inquisitive eyes of the graduating class hadn't helped and she didn't trust herself around him anymore. She had decided it was best for him to be free of her and her baggage so she had turned him down while her heart broke inside. Her plan wasn't working that well however, as she found herself drawn to him and now there was this pesky jealousy. It took her a minute to realize Tashigi was excusing herself and Robin watched her hurry away without bother to say anything.
"She fell, that's all." Zoro said calmly before walking away from her.
Robin could only stare after him in shock, once again Zoro was able to pick up on something that she had carefully guarded. No one had been able to get inside her head, inside her heart like that before and she recognized the importance of it. Zoro had seen her jealousy and simply set things straight, there weren't many guys in Robin's past that would have done that. The guys Robin had known would have taken this weakness and used it to their advantage
and the fact that Zoro didn't only made her love him more. Suddenly standing there in the middle of somebody else's prom all of her issues seemed insignificant.
"Oh my god!"
Luffy turned to look at her surprised by her sudden outburst and Nami couldn't hold back a small giggle. He looked so cute staring at her with a mixture of amusement and concern that she couldn't resist pressing a quick kiss against his pouty lips.
"Look over there, behind the speaker."
"Huh? Who's... Oh!"
Nami let out another laugh as the emotions flitted across her boyfriend's face. First curiosity giving way to recognition and then being pushed aside for embarrassed disgust. Off in a darkened corner of the room, hidden behind a speaker was none other than Smoker and Ace. They were clearly in the throes of passion and if Ace had been wearing a shirt when he snuck in it most definitely wasn't on his person now and his cargo shorts were dangerously low on his hips. So low that Nami feared if Smoker nudged them at all they would fall to his ankles in a puddle heap.
Ace threw his head back and Nami could only imagine the type of sounds passing through his parted lips. Smoker's mouth seem fixed to Ace's slender neck and he had Ace pressed firmly against the wall and Nami suspected it was Smoker's weight keeping Ace's pants in place.
"Why is Ace here?" Luffy questioned dumbly.
"I think you're seeing why Ace is here, Luf."
"To make-out with Smoker? He crashed prom just to make out with Smoker?"
"It would appear so."
"Jeez, watching them is like watching porn."
"Why are we still watching, Nami?"
"I don't know but I think I need some fresh air."
"Fresh air sounds good."
Luffy led her out of the crowded banquet hall and into the fresh air the cool night provided. Nami was feeling a little hot and more than a little worked up between being pressed close to Luffy all night and then seeing Ace in action. Luffy took her around to the side of the building where they had some false privacy and then before she could say anything had her backed up against the brick wall his mouth closing in on hers.
He kissed her deeply his tongue pushing in and dominating her mouth and all she could do was kiss him back and cling to his shoulders. Luffy pressed his groin into her and she could
feel his hardness pressing into her making her belly pool with warmth. This entire day was seeming just a tad unreal to her. She had started the day off with a brunch with Nojiko who had returned from her vacation tanned and relaxed leading Nami to believe she had taken in more than just the sights. Nojiko had taken it upon herself to have an embarrassing sex after prom talk with her involving a personal anecdote she could have gone without and a graduation gift of a box of condoms. Nojiko's conversation had left a bunch of questions clouding Nami's mind which had led to the pre-prom sex with Luffy.
Nami didn't regret her impulse in the slightest, Luffy was a perfect gentleman and she knew that he loved her deeply and she felt the same. Being in Luffy's arms had been right, she had felt a completeness she hadn't known existed and it had been quite literally orgasmic.
The night wasn't even over yet and she was outside in the shadows pressed up against a wall by the boy she loved his hand slowly sliding under her dress and working its way up her thigh. Fireworks were exploding in her brain and Nami simply gave herself over to the passion forgetting about everything else but the feel of Luffy's hands on her, stroking and teasing until she came with a muffled cry slumping over his shoulder.
Zoro strode out of the room and into the lobby his head spinning with the emotions warring within him. He loved Robin, he realized that now but it didn't matter since she had turned him down, coolly and efficiently. He had been angry and hurt but he had shoved those emotions aside along with his love and then she had to go and show up again with those cool blue eyes that sometimes leaked emotion to him. He had seen the jealousy in them along with the pain of seeing another woman in his arms, no matter how she had ended up there.
Zoro did not like being played with, woman and their pathetic mind games could go to hell as far as he was concerned, he wasn't going to play. If what Ace had said about once not being enough was true then he wasn't going to give in because she didn't want to share his attention. If something was going to happen between him and Nico Robin it was going to be a hell lot more than a one-night stand.
He heard her voice call out behind him and was slightly surprised to find that she had followed after him but the way his gut twisted at just her voice he didn't allow himself to turn around.
This time the voice was softer, less sure and surprisingly close. The sound of his name on her lips was too much for him and he slowly turned to face her. She looked incredible as always and he wished he had the strength to make some flippant comment that wouldn't betray his roiling emotions. She tucked a strand of hair behind her ear in a nervous gesture that seemed out of place on her. Her entire outfit screamed sensual confidence and he allowed himself a slow once-over taking it all in. The dress was purple which didn't surprise him, she seemed to have a thing for the colour. It was a deep purple, almost brown and to Zoro right then it was the sexiest colour in existence.
The dress was halter-style and the dip in front was so low that it went half way down her torso, the back exposed even more skin, every inch of creamy skin on her back exposed, dipping low the fabric starting just below the small of her back. She wore stiletto heels in a sparkling silver and they winked in the light when she moved. Then there was the slit, it was so high that it should be illegal. Stopping half-way up her thigh and exposing more expanse of creamy skin that looked so incredibly kissable. Zoro was getting turned on just looking at her which wasn't boding well for his plan of walking away.
"I'm sorry if I was rude to your friend."
"She's not really my friend."
Almost unconsciously they had taken a step closer, he could feel the heat from her body and their breaths intermingled.
"I didn't like seeing another woman in your arms."
"You turned me down."
"I know. It was a mistake."
"Nothing's changed. You're still older and I am still a student."
"None of that matters."
None of it had ever truly mattered to Zoro before but it seemed odd that all of a sudden it didn't matter to her. He wanted to simply say ok and to sweep her into his arms but he feared she would just leave after, realizing it had all been a mistake. He looked deep into her eyes and for once they weren't guarded. He looked into their blue depths and saw the answers to all of his unspoken questions. She had been scared, she wasn't any more sure about this than he was. But behind the fear he saw something that had him closing the distance and drawing her to him for a kiss. He saw love.
They had left the lobby quickly, it might not matter to them but some of the teachers might not see things that way, besides privacy was better anyways. He spotted Vivi's limo parked out in the parking lot and headed in that direction. The chauffer was gone until prom finished and he hoped that it was left unlocked. Trying the door it didn't open and he cursed lightly running a hand through his hair.
"Here, let me." Robin said gently nudging him out of the way.
Zoro watched as she slipped a hair clip out of her hair and a nail file out of her purse before bending over the lock. A few seconds later he heard the soft click and she opened the door triumphantly. The fact that she had just picked the limo's lock turned Zoro on immensely and he fought the urge to push her into the vehicle and strip her of her incredibly sexy dress. She climbed into the limo and Zoro followed her in, shutting the door behind him.
The inside was pretty spacious and Robin stretched herself out over one of the benches while Zoro settled in on one across from her, the space necessary to keep him from jumping her. Zoro wasn't sure what they were doing exactly, he was pretty sure they were going to have sex but that seemed more like the end conclusion of something and not what he should immediately jump into. He was saved from an awkward silence by Robin speaking.
"How've you been lately?" she asked softly.
It was a simple question which should have a simple answer but as was everything between them, how Zoro had been was complicated. He didn't want to lie and say everything was great since the last month had been pretty much anything but, yet at the same time he knew he couldn't whine about his conflicting emotions. In the end he settled for busy. He briefly told her about all the extra work that had come at the end of the term and the necessary studying for upcoming exams.
"We can continue our tutoring sessions if you want some extra help before the exam." She offered lightly and he gladly took her up on it.
They continued to talk, the conversation was both meaningful and completely pointless and Zoro found himself moving closer to where she lay. Eventually he had moved to the bench along the front so that their heads met at the angle. He was on his back with his knees up, one arm behind his head as a pillow. He shifted uncomfortably in his clothes wishing he was in something more comfortable. He had been forced to wear something formal and he had settled with a pair of black dress pants and a white dress shirt with the top couple of buttons unbuttoned. Nami had scowled at his idea of formal but he didn't care and he sure as hell wasn't going to wear some suit. He undid a few more buttons and rolled the cuffs up feeling a bit less restricted.
"Want a drink?" Robin asked suddenly.
Zoro wasn't sure where she was planning on getting a drink from, there wasn't anything in the limo thanks to Igaram, he had checked on the way here. He nearly choked when Robin's hand slid up her dress and re-appeared with a small silver flask. She twisted it open and took a swig before closing it again and handing it over to him. Zoro took the flash gratefully and took a healthy swallow of whiskey. The alcohol burned as it went down his throat but it was in a satisfying way.
"Where the hell did that come from?" he asked returning the flask.
It had clearly been strapped to her leg but her dress wasn't that loose and he most certainly had not seen a flask-sized bump anywhere. Robin just smiled at him mysteriously and the idea that it could have been on the inside of her thigh struck him making him rock hard. This was definitely his kind of woman. They passed the flask back and forth a few more times, each time drawing closer together until Zoro was sitting in the corner with Robin in his lap. She drained the last of the whiskey dropping the flask behind he and bending down to press her lips to his.
She tasted like whiskey and the unique taste that was all her and Zoro couldn't get enough of it. His hands slid up her sides, cupping her breasts and squeezing lightly. The slit in her dress came in handy as she was able to easily straddle his lap, not that Zoro would have minded if her dress had ridden up around her waist to do so. This kiss was different than anything they had shared previously, there were no regrets or finality to it. This kiss was full of promise and hope, this kiss was just the beginning and not an end.
Robin's hair fell forward, tickling his face with its softness and Zoro smiled into the kiss. Robin pulled back her eyes hazy and her lips already swollen and Zoro couldn't resist placing another quick kiss against her lips. She was absolutely beautiful and everything about them felt so right. When they were together things like school, society and ages didn't matter. When they were together it was as simple as they were a man and woman in love.
His fingers deftly undid the clasp behind her neck and her dress fell down exposing her breasts to him and he took one hardened nipple in his mouth sucking and biting while she arched her back pressing forward, begging for more. They began a slow discovery of each other's bodies and shirts were unbuttoned and clothing removed, flushed skin revealed. Heated kisses were placed against sensitive skin and hands roamed and tugged sending nerves into a frenzy of passion and desire.
They were silent except for the occasional moan or gasp, their desire conveyed in each touch and each kiss. Words weren't needed and would only cheapen the moment so both stayed silent except for sounds of enjoyment. Zoro had always found Robin's voice sultry and rich, caressing his skin like velvet and wasn't too surprised to find that her moans had the same effect. Each murmur of approval and purr of arousal shot through him making him want her even more.
They came together in the perfect blending of body and spirit and as they moved together Zoro instinctively knew that his world had just drastically changed and it was for the better. Just like when Luffy had plopped down beside him a bundle of energy in a straw hat a few years ago in the police station Zoro knew he had found someone who understood his soul and his spirit and would never make him be anything but who he was. Even better Robin loved him for this and desired him because of who he was and he could sense a similar connection in her.
Vivi cuddled further into Sanji's embrace, a contented sigh escaping past her lips. Hearing the sound Sanji glanced down at her and pressed a small kiss against her lips before giving her a gentle squeeze and returning his gaze to the screen. After prom they had all came back to her place and everyone had seemed pretty content to slip a movie in and relax. Looking around the room she was glad to see happiness on her friends' faces. Luffy had called Usopp on the way back and they had swung by to pick him up so he could join in on the fun. With him was an old friend from his old town who had unexpectedly dropped by for a visit. The two were seated in the love seat and Vivi noticed that Usopp's eyes were on the delicate blonde more often than the screen. She could sense a budding romance and it made her even happier, it seemed that everyone was pairing off tonight.
She had been quite surprised to find Zoro sprawled in the limo with Nico Robin but thankfully whatever they had been doing before, they were both fully clothed and dozing lightly. She had been dubious about their relationship but the small smile on Zoro's face had made it impossible not to invite the older woman to join them. There had been a matching smile on her face so she figured Zoro was safe. Vivi had spotted Zoro's camera on the floor and careful to not look at what other pictures might have been on it she took a picture of the sleeping lovers before gently waking them.
Everyone had changed into more comfortable clothes they had brought over earlier and since Robin didn't have any she wore a pair of Vivi's shorts and Zoro's dress shirt. There had been some slight awkwardness to begin with, no one was quite sure how to act around the woman who had once been their teacher but soon things had relaxed and nobody seemed to mind. Now here they all were lounging in her house as night slowly turned into morning.