Usopp didn't know the exact events that had led up to him sitting in the cabin with a jittery Luffy and chattering Chopper plopped down on the couch across from him -- something about the two being bored and running around the ship disturbing the peace, and Nami had demanded the sniper entertain them to keep them out of her hair -- and he didn't really care. Actually, Usopp was just fine with this turn of events. He had been rather bored himself with nothing to do but tinker with his inventions, and it wasn't that he didn't enjoy THAT, but now he had an audience! What was better?
"You're gonna tell us a story, Usopp?" Luffy asked as he rocked back and forth on the couch, gripping the edge of the cushion and coming dangerously close to falling right on his face.
Chopper made a happy sound. "What kind of story? Is it another of your adventures?"
"Nope," Usopp said, sitting up straighter and folding his arms. "I'm going to tell you the story of an ancient hero!"
Chopper looked starry-eyed and Luffy "oooooh"ed in response to this exclamation.
"Once upon a time, there lived--" Usopp was cut off when Luffy asked, "Is this a fairytale?" with distaste.
"No, this totally happened," Usopp said with a snort. "Fairytale." Ha.
Luffy grinned at that.
"Once upon a time--" Usopp started again, and waited for further interruptions. None came. "-- there lived a mighty hero named Usoppo. He was known throughout the lands for his strength, cleverness, and bravery."
"Coooool," Chopper whispered, and Usopp hid his grin.
"One day, after single-handedly defeating ten thousand evil knights in battle with only his bare hands as weapons, the warrior Usoppo came upon a golden kingdom. The people of this kingdom, having witnessed Usoppo's prowess in battle, begged the warrior to become their king!"
"Their king?" Luffy grinned.
"The great warrior Usoppo, being the valiant and true man he was, knew that the golden kingdom needed an amazing, powerful, humble leader such as himself to protect it and its people from thieves and invaders. So he accepted, and became the ruler of the Golden Kingdom. And the Great King Usoppo lived in a castle built entirely of solid gold, with--"
Luffy's arm shot up. And waved around for good measure. "Can the castle be made of meat?"
"No," Usopp said flatly.
"Why not?" Luffy whined.
"Because it's made of gold!" Usopp informed him, gesturing grandly.
Luffy looked crestfallen, so the storyteller quickly added, "But the golden castle did have a magical, never-ending supply of meat."
"Yosh!" Luffy cheered, clapping. For meat.
Usopp ignored that. "And the Great Hall of Meat had a guardian called Luffio--" his audience gasped "-- who also happened to be the Great King Usoppo's strongest and most loyal follower."
Both of Luffy's arms shot up this time. "I think Luffio would be a better king."
"He can't be king," Usopp said calmly.
"Why?" Luffy frowned.
"Because the Great and Mighty King Usoppo is king." Ha.
"Couldn't Luffio challenge him to--"
"Whyyyyy?" Luffy whined.
"Because Luffio was far too busy eating his never-ending meat supply to make a challenge for the crown." Usopp grinned. Luffy looked torn.
Usopp proceeded before the captain's brain caught up with the situation. "The Great King Usoppo also had a doctor!"
Chopper's eyes lit up. "Really?"
"Of course!" Usopp said grandly. "The greatest doctor in all the lands." Not, apparently, just one of the lands. "And this amazing doctor..."
Chopper was leaning forward in his seat now.
"Was a reindeer..."
The little doctor was in serious danger of pitching off onto the floor.
"Named Doctor Chop!" Usopp finished with a flourish, and Chopper swooned right off the couch.
Usopp grinned as Luffy righted the floored physician.
"Doctor Chop was a reindeer like me?" Chopper cried, practically dancing in his seat.
"Waaaah, I bet he was cool!" Luffy added excitedly. "Almost as cool as Luffio!"
"He could probably cure any disease," Chopper said wistfully.
All present failed to notice when a fourth party walked soundlessly into the room and studied the scene.
"Well of course," Usopp continued, "To be the doctor of the invincible King Usoppo he would be able to cure any ailment."
Chopper gave a thrilled cheer.
"If he was so invincible," intoned a new voice, "why did he need such a great doctor?"
Usopp's eyes snapped open and fell on the swordsman currently smirking at him from his place leaning against the far wall.
Luffy and Chopper turned expectant eyes on their storyteller.
"Well..." Usopp thought quickly. "The Great King Usoppo kept this doctor for the ten million peasants he ruled over!" Ha, win.
Chopper squealed. "Ten million?!"
"I think King Usoppo kept the doctor for another reason," Zoro said as he moved to stand by Luffy and Chopper, who were now alternating their attention between Usopp and the swordsman.
"And what reason is that?" Usopp inquired suspiciously.
"He kept the doctor for the one day when the only man in the world who could defeat him arrived," Zoro said mysteriously, and Chopper covered his mouth, holding his breath in suspense.
"And who might that be?" Usopp sniffed.
"The world's greatest swordsman, whose power was so great, and whose blades were so sharp that he could cut anything." A brief pause. "... Even the invincible King Usoppo."
Chopper gasped and then immediately started babbling about how amazing the swordsman must have been, and Usopp scowled. Then he grinned evilly.
"And what was this all-powerful swordsman's name?" the sniper challenged.
"Zoronoa," Zoro supplied without missing a beat.
"Oh come on!" Usopp threw his arms up and rolled his eyes.
"I bet that would be the coolest battle ever!" Luffy said as he bounced in his seat.
"Of course Zoronoa would win," Zoro said smugly, "since no one, not even the Great King Usoppo, could defeat the--"
"Horrible, ugly, mutated beast. Who was also stupid," chimed a new voice.
Usopp sensed this would not end well.
"WHAT?!" Zoro snapped, turning a deadly glare on the cook as Sanji placidly lit a cigarette. When had he shown up?
The blond smirked and turned to Chopper and Luffy.
"You see, the 'great swordsman' was actually a big, scaly, gruesome dragon come to steal the beautiful princess Namirella from the Golden Kingdom."
Did he just go there?
"What?" Zoro squawked again, "Why would I-- I mean, Zoronoa want to steal that hag?"
"WHAT DID YOU JUST CALL NAMI-SWAN?!" Sanji roared.
Zoro grinned wolfishly. "I was referring to the princess Namirella. You're the one who assumed I was talking about Nami. And while Nami is a sea witch, don't you think calling her a hag is a bit cruel?" He 'tsk'ed at the blond. "I'm surprised at you, Sanji."
"YOU DIE!" Sanji yelled, and then dove over the couch Luffy and Chopper occupied to match reality to words, taking the swordsman down bodily.
Usopp, Chopper and Luffy tried to ignore them. But this proved nearly impossible since the pair refused to kill each other quietly.
"You fight like a woman!" Sanji growled.
"You LOOK like a woman!" Zoro shot back.
This was followed by clever lines such as, "Raaaaaagh" and "Aaaaaahh!!"
Usopp valiantly shut them out for the sake of his two-man audience. Unfortunately he only got so far as "Anyway..." before Chopper chirped, "There was a princess?"
"Yes!" Sanji crooned from behind the couch. He managed to extricate himself and drag himself into view again. He was a mess, but pain was no distraction when he had the chance to show his appreciation for the beautiful Nami! ... Er, Namirella.
"The princess of the Golden Kingdom was the fairest in all the lands!" Again, not just one of the lands. "So great was her beauty that to look upon her would be to view a goddess!"
Chopper was enthralled. Luffy wanted to hear more about the Hall of Never-Ending Meat. Usopp wondered when his story had been hijacked.
"Yes, the fair princess Namirella was truly stunning to behold, and thus was in terrible danger from old, ugly, green dragons who were jealous of her beauty. Luckily she had a protector!"
Chopper could barely contain himself by this point. "She did? Who?"
"The honorable knight-prince, Sir Sanjalot!"
Somewhere behind the couch a swordsman snorted.
Sanji turned a glare on what was either the floor or Zoro, Usopp couldn't tell.
"What was that, marimo?"
"Nothing," Zoro said innocently, "just envisioning Sir Sanjalot, prince of Retardia."
And the cook and swordsman were at it again. At least the interruption was over.
Luffy crossed his arms and groused, "Who cares about princesses? What about Luffio?"
"And Doctor Chop!" Chopper added.
Usopp nodded. "While important, the princess wasn't in this story, and the knight--"
"Needn't have worried, since the princess was more than capable of dealing with an old, stupid dragon," Nami informed the room as she sauntered over to stand directly infront of Usopp.
The sniper scowled and tried to see around her. "Whose story is this?!"
Nami ignored him, holding the attention of her small audience. "You see, princess Namirella was not only wealthy beyond your wildest dreams, but also cunning, gorgeous, powerful, and--"
"A SEA WITCH!" Zoro crowed.
Sanji's response was, invariably, to kick him in the face.
"You ruined my story!" Nami shrieked.
"Whose story?" Usopp cried, but his voice fell on deaf ears. Nami reached back and grabbed the sniper by the collar and, apparently intending to use him as the blunt weapon for some much-needed idiot-smashing, chased Zoro and Sanji from the room.
On deck, Sanji could be heard waxing on about how lovely Nami looked when she was trying to kill him. Inside, Luffy and Chopper were left in utter confusion.
"What about the dragon?" Luffy asked the air.
"And the doctor?" Chopper said dejectedly.
"And the meat?" Luffy added.
"Perhaps I could help, captain-san."
Luffy and Chopper turned to the source of the voice with identical expressions of surprise, and Robin gently closed the book she had been reading and set it aside on the small table by her chair. In all of the excitement, no one had noticed her presence.
"How?" Luffy asked, deflated. "Usopp isn't here to finish the story..."
"I believe I'm familiar with this story," Robin said serenely as she moved to claim Usopp's abandoned seat.
Chopper gasped in awe. "Really?"
"How?" Luffy asked suspiciously.
"She must've read it in one of her books," Chopper whispered, saving Robin the effort.
"She does read alot..." Luffy agreed, and then both he and the reindeer huddled together and started speaking hurriedly in hushed tones.
Robin watched and waited for the inevitable outcome.
"Okay," Luffy said finally when the two straightened, looking serious. "You can finish the story, Robin."
This earned a smile from the archaeologist, and she folded her hands on her knee as she thought over the story so far.
"Let's see... Ah yes," she said thoughtfully. "I remember now."
She cleared her throat for effect, then began with, "Sadly, during the clash of the powerful witch-princess Namirella, the honorable knight-prince Sir Sanjalot, and the mighty swordsman-dragon Zoronoa, the Great King Usoppo lost his crown."
Chopper looked a little misty. "But... what about the kingdom?"
"This was not the end for the Golden Kingdom," Robin continued as Chopper sniffled, "as King Usoppo's ever-loyal friend, Luffio, Guardian of Meat, was there to take the role of king."
Luffy made an approving sound and wiggled in his seat.
"And with the help of the wise Doctor Chop, the new king was able to reconcile the warring parties and bring an end to the great battle. And so Usoppo, Namirella, Sanjalot, Zoronoa, Doctor Chop and king Luffio became nakama and peace was restored the the Golden Kingdom, and everyone lived happily ever after." A pause, then, "The end."
For a long moment after Robin had finished speaking, the room was silent. Luffy and Chopper studied the archaeologist as they contemplated the ending, and she regarded them patiently. Then the silence was broken as Luffy gave a cheer, Chopper clapped happily, and Robin laughed behind her hand. Maybe this story-telling thing was more fun than she thought.
Out on deck, Zoro and Sanji ran for their lives and Nami shouted threats as she chased them around the lawn and Usopp decided that from that day on when he tried to tell a fairytale he would lock the damn door.
Note; I've never written anything before. XDD Outside of roleplays, that is. Nothing serious like actually trying to write a fic! :v Though it's not like this is serious... XD It just popped into my head one night and I decided, what the hell? It's fun. :3 I just hope everyone is mostly in-character! D:
XD And yes, I saw my chance to say "prince of Retardia" and I jumped on it! 8DDD