Disclaimer: I don't own anything from One Piece!
VTM: I'm back! Like promised! Sadly though, my computer had recently died (may it rest in pieces), and I lost everything that I had been working on…but I have a temporary replacement now and I'll be able to start things anew…thank you for all your patients. Take note that this chapter now takes place a little earlier than the original, do not worry, there is always a method to my madness. In this chapter Ace and Luffy are 14 and 11 and there is more brotherly fluff. And now, iiiiiit's show time!!
It was raining, Ace watched idly as rain droplets slid their way down the bus window. He never cared much for this cold, wet weather; however his 'little brother' loved it. Running about and splashing the numerous puddles, it was no wonder he had to stay home from school that day!
Little brother Luffy, so foolish and carefree, grinning that silly grin as Makino scolded him the day before. A small smile creeped its way onto Ace's lips. The two were as different as night and day, but Ace wouldn't have it any other way, to him, Luffy was perfect just the way he was.
The bus then slowed to a stop, this was where Ace got off. Getting up, he left as a few of his friends said their goodbyes. The rain was coming down much harder now; Ace began to make a run for the local orphanage that he and Luffy stayed at. It had always been just the two of them, him and Luffy. Ever since they were young they had been together.
Entering the lobby Ace sighed, he was soaked. His shoes squished as he walked, Ace made a slightly grossed out face. Yep, this was why he hated the rainy seasons.
Ace and Luffy lived at the St. Roger's Orphanage. The only orphanage in the city, it was pretty old, one of the oldest buildings in the city. It was run by the local Catholic Church, and was put under the management of Makino, an ex-nun that found her calling taking care of children rather than working at the church.
When Ace and Luffy arrived they were simply left at the door step of the orphanage. No parents, no papers, no note with an explanation, just the two boys. No one was sure if the two were really brothers by blood, not even the boys themselves could remember, they were so different and in some ways alike it was pretty hard to tell. But either way it didn't matter, their bond was just as strong as any real siblings', perhaps even stronger.
"Oh! I just mopped there!" said a young woman as she rushed over. "Oh, Ace, your back, how was school?"
"It was fine Makino…Er…sorry about your floor…" Ace said as he scratched the back of his head. He half expected Luffy to pop up at any moment and trap him in one of his infamous 'Hugs of Doom'. When no Luffy came Ace gave a small smile and asked. "How is he? Is he feeling a little better?"
"He doesn't want to sit still...I told him he has to stay in bed…" Makino shook her head and sighed. I swear…that boy…I wonder if God had forgotten to give him an 'off switch'…"
Ace laughed. "I wouldn't be too surprised…"
Makino gave a small huff. "Yeah…Anyway I'll be fixing dinner soon…tell him if he sneaks out of his room one more time there will be no supper for him!"
"That should get his attention…" Ace said with a smirk. "When in doubt, bring up food…" And with that he left the lobby. Not long after he entered a hallway he spotted a familiar figure heading his way.
He was a fairly tall man, tanned skin, shaggy red hair, and three scars over his left eye. He dressed in a simple white shirt, light tan pants, and a straw hat on his head. The man had an easy going presence about him, and looked ready to go to the beach if anything else. Finally the red haired man noticed the younger boy and grinned. "Well what do you know, Ace! How are you?"
Ace stopped in his tracks, and donned a slightly irritated look. "Shanks? What are you doing here?"
Shanks laughed. "Well that's some welcome…I just stopped by to visit…I'm in town for a couple weeks or so…"
"Really? Nice seeing you…bye." Ace said as he then walked past. He never really cared much for the red haired man. It wasn't that he hated him; there was always a small fear in the back of his mind when ever he heard that Shanks was in town. Ace couldn't help but think back to Shanks' first visit.
"Say Luffy…" Shanks said as he kneeled down to Luffy's level. "I was wondering…How would you like to come with me?"
The little boy's eyes lit up. "R-really!?"
"Yeah." Shanks said with a grin.
Luffy latched onto the red haired man. He was so happy.
Ace, who was hiding around a corner, was to say the least surprised. At first he was happy, but that happiness soon faded when he realized that it would mean saying goodbye to his little brother.
This realization seemed to suddenly hit Luffy as well when he suddenly pulled away from Shanks. "Wait! But what about Ace!?"
"Hmm? Ace? Oh…Makino said he's quite popular and that he should get a good family with no problems…" Shanks said reassuringly.
"No…" Luffy said with a sniffle. "I don't want to leave Ace! We have to stick together!"
Shanks has kept his offer open to Luffy ever since. And Ace had always been a little afraid of coming home and finding his little brother gone. Glancing back, Ace could see that Shanks had left; he sighed and continued on his way. Soon Ace stopped in his tracks; a small smirk crept onto his handsome features. Not too far down the hall was Luffy, sighing dramatically and looking rather bored.
"You know…Makino told me that you need to stay in bed…" Ace said with a slightly mischievous tone in his voice.
Luffy jumped slightly, taken off guard by the suddenness. "Ace! You're back!" Luffy said with a grin.
"Yeah, and you should be in bed…" Ace pointed out.
Luffy's cheeks puffed as he gave a small huff. "Forget that! Its soooooo boring!" he whined.
Ace's smirk grew slightly. "She said if you don't…there will be no dinner for you…"
Luffy's eyes went wide. "She wouldn't!"
"You know she would…" Ace said while tilting his head slightly. "So off to bed with you!"
Luffy gave a drawn out groan. "Oh fine…But Ace will keep me company, ne? Just for a little?"
Ace rolled his eyes. "I guess…but just for a bit…okay?"
"Nee, hee, hee, hee! Thank you Ace!"
A little later the two were in Luffy's room. Like most the bedrooms, it wasn't a very big room, but it was somewhat cozy, the walls were a warm color to match his personality, and the walls had a few pictures and posters decorating them, mostly of pirates and of the sea. On his shelves were small things that only Luffy would collect, or things that he would get from Shanks when he visited. Sea shells, rocks, odd little knick knacks that'd no one would really care about, and yet he called them his treasures. Silly little brother, just what exactly did he see in those silly little things? Ace for the life of him couldn't understand. But then again, that was Luffy for you, hard to predict, deeper than you'd think, childish, and sweet. All in all, Ace didn't mind, he loved Luffy just the way he was.
Luffy fidgeted a little, there seemed to be something on his mind that he couldn't quite bring to words. "Erm…Ace…What's kissing like?" he finally asked.
"Huh?" Ace said with a blink. It was such an odd question to hear from the younger boy. "Why would you want to know about that?" He then smirked. "Is there a girl you like?"
Luffy tilted his head to the side. "No…but a lot of people keep talking about it…" He then gave a slight pout. "I just don't get what the big deal is…they go on about that stuff like they're trophies or something…"
Ace was quiet for a while. But then sighed and spoke. "I guess…people say a first kiss is special…many firsts are supposed to be thought as special…"
Luffy looked thoughtful for a moment. "Was Ace's first kiss special?" he asked with a grin.
Ace was taken a little off guard by the question. He averted his eyes from Luffy and didn't say anything.
"Ace?" Luffy's smile faded slightly at his brother's sudden silence.
"It was nothing really special…" Ace said with a small sigh. "Don't let the other kids get to you about it…its kind of stupid really…"
Luffy cocked his head to the side a little, a look of slight disappointment was written across his face. "…Really? That's…kind of sad…"
"Sad?" Ace said with a blink. This was one of rare moments where little brother was serious. Not that Luffy was stupid, it was just that most of the time he'd act so childish. You never really could tell just what really goes on in that head of his.
Luffy the gained a slightly weary smile and shook his head. "Nee, hee, hee…It's nothing the Ace has to worry about…" The younger boy then looked away from his brother. "If it's just something stupid…I guess I'll just get it out of my way…" Luffy said with a shrug.
Ace's eyes widened slightly. "W-well…I mean…don't just give it to anyone…"
"Na? What do you mean?" Luffy said with a blink.
Ace blushed slightly. "Well…It might not be a big deal…but, if you can…give it to someone special to you…if you don't…you might regret it later…"
"Hrmm…" Luffy looked thoughtful for a few moments, letting Ace's words register in his mind. "I think I understand…" He then donned his usual silly grin. "Someone special…"
Late that night, Luffy couldn't sleep; he lied in his bed wide awake staring up at the ceiling, lost in his thoughts. Though he thought he had understood what Ace had told him, there were still some things he didn't quite understand. Luffy sighed and grumbled, stupid Ace, why did he have to make things sound so damn complicated? Just what was a 'special' person anyway? What is it that makes someone
'special'? Was it like if those stupid stories that the girls in his class liked to read in their magazines? Yuck. Ace was gross if he thought that was 'special'. So then, what is 'special'? "Hmm…" Luffy then suddenly got out of his bed, and left his room.
Meanwhile, Ace was sound asleep, but it wasn't long before he was woken up by feeling his bed shift and shake as someone crawled in to join him. Ace tiredly frowned. He turned over only to come face to face with his foolish little brother. "Luffy! You know Makino doesn't like you sleeping with me! Get out of my bed!" Ace said in a loud whisper.
But Luffy didn't seem to hear him (or maybe he didn't care what Makino didn't like), he slipped his arms around the older boy, and snuggled close. "Ace…you said that…I should give my first kiss to someone that is special to me…but how do I know they're really all that special?"
Ace's eyebrow gave an irritated twitch, and his freckled cheeks gained the slightest shade of pink. He seriously didn't need to deal with this at this time of night. "I…I don't know…get out of here!"
"Yes you do…" Luffy said suddenly. "Or else why tell me that in the first place?"
There was a long silence, but there was a slight tension in the air. Luffy could see Ace was not willing to answer. "Your first kiss…wasn't special…because it wasn't with someone that was special to you, right?" Luffy said with a surprisingly mature tone in his voice. "But what is 'special' anyway?"
"Hmph…It doesn't really matter…" Ace tried to pull away from Luffy's grip; he finally managed to get free. He was about to order Luffy out of his room once more, but he was met with Luffy's pleading eyes. He could feel his heart sink slightly and his stomach began to churn. "Special…well…I guess one way you could put it…is…when you really care about or love someone…I guess…but you're too young to really know much about that anyway…"
"Na?" Luffy pouted slightly. "Does Ace think I'm stupid? I know love…I live with it everyday!" he said with a smile. Suddenly, Luffy leaned in and pressed his lips against Ace's.
Ace's heart fluttered and nearly stopped, his face was warming up as he flushed a beautiful shade of red. Getting lost in the moment, Ace began to kiss back. How good it was, Luffy's lips were so soft and warm, and they felt so nice. This was how a first kiss should be like. But soon Ace came back to his senses, and he broke away. "L-Luffy!" he said as he was catching his breath. "What the hell are you doing!?"
Luffy, just as flushed as Ace, smiled and gave a small laugh. "I gave Ace my first kiss...And it couldn't have been more special..."
"Luffy…You idiot…" Ace mumbled, still flush and warm. "Why waste it on me?"
"Because you're special to me…" Luffy said as he scooted closer and cuddled up to the older boy. "I love you, big brother…"
Ace couldn't help but smile a little; he wrapped his arms around him and held him close. "I love you too, little brother…"
VTM: For those who enjoyed this, move on to the epic-ness that is chapter 2!