As requested by LuffyxRuby, aka my first reviewer EVER, I updated sooner than I expected. HOWEVER. This comes with a price! I have not yet typed up chapter 4! Because a certain friend of mine introduced me to a new manga/anime called "Shaman King."
Andy: Addicting you to things is fun.
Emma: SHUT UP WHILE I CONTINUE MY INTRODUCTION.
Anyway, as many of you may know, it's hard to put a good manga down when you start reading it. So, I'm estimating at least another THREE DAYS before an update. Oh and...
Emma: -Gives LuffyxRuby a cookie.- Don't hate me for this boring chapter? ;_;
Andy: Oh please, it's hopeless. No one is going to want to read after this chapter.
Emma: DON'T TEST MY PATIENCE, MISTER. Just because you're in this chapter for like two seconds. D: And feel special, this was originally the entire story of Rose, but as I decided the chapter was extremely boring with the whole history thing- I extended it to include another half-assed attempt at comedy. Don't kill me?
Oh, and if you're wondering, the plot is currently set between episodes 18 and 19 of the anime series (I'm using the anime and not the manga). So the next thing is getting Sanji. I WILL NOT GET FANGIRL-EY IN THIS FANFIC. IF I DO, PLEASE TELL ME.
Andy: -Looks up from manga.- Good lord, woman. Could you just get on with the story? It's already boring enough without you ranting again.
Emma: I'll get you for this later. You're one of the characters in my story, remember? I can make you do ANYTHING I WANT. I COULD PAIR YOU WITH NAMI!
Andy: D: D: D:
Emma: Kekeke. Well, anyway. One Piece does not belong to me, it is property of the wonderful Eiichiro Oda. If it WAS mine... Well, people would put bears in my mailbox. Let's leave it at that.
Every King Needs a Queen
Chapter 3: Why do Grandmothers Insist Upon Telling Pointless Stories?
Nami was in a good mood today.
And that is saying a lot for a person of her character.
She was glad to be separated from the idiotic crew she decided to follow around, and for once, she was enjoying herself.
Luffy had gone off to explore, Usopp mumbled something about checking on Luffy, and that weird Andei kid had a bad feeling or something. But, of course, Nami had no need to worry today. They weren't her problem right now.
Nothing could ruin her fabulous mood! Shopping, enjoying the sun, and no dolts to follow her around to bother her! Today was perfect!
Well, until she got shot at.
That could ruin anyone's mood really.
Nami froze in her tracks, eyes wide in fear.
When she needed them, of course they weren't there!
She made a mental note to pummel them later.
Whispers erupted from the townsfolk.
"Next one won't miss, Rose," spoke a ragged voice above the crowd.
'Rose,' thought Nami, turning slowly to meet the voice, 'who is that?'
The whispers were getting louder and more frantic, as a few people started backing away from her.
"Is that her?"
"That can't be her. Doesn't she have red hair?"
"She is a redhead."
"No red hair."
Nami dropped her shopping bags as the pistol wielded by a tall man with long, sleek black hair pointed at her forehead.
"So you've finally decided to show your face, eh?" the street grew quiet at the sound of the loud voice.
"I… I don't know you! I'm… I'm a traveler!" said Nami, finally finding her voice, though it shook in fear.
The whispers started again.
"Is she serious?"
"That can't be her."
"I remember her being more brave."
"She looks innocent enough!"
"Now that you're cornered, with no brother to save you, what're you gonna do? You'll pay for what you did…"
"Wh-what?! I didn't do anything! Please! J-Just hear me out!"
"I've had enough of this! It's time you got what you deserved."
"NO! PLEASE! STOP! I'M BEGGING Y.."
Everyone paused, then the whispers started again, more excited than before.
"It's proof then!"
"This is her!"
"That's her grandma, right? It has to be her!"
The voice rang out again, "DISRESPECTFUL BRATS! Make way for your elder!"
It was an odd sight, as a line of people started to stumble away with looks of pain contorting their faces. As the person in the front of the crowd tried to scramble away from the elderly woman- she stepped out of the circle and hit the man on the foot with a oak staff twice her size. Ignoring the man's howls of pain, she made her way toward the two in the middle. The black-haired man looked agitated.
"Look, you old hag, there's nothing you can do to stop m…"
"IMPUDENT CHILD. This is not my granddaughter."
Complete silence followed these words.
"Come dearie. I'm afraid you've been involved in a mix-up of sorts… Oh know sweetie don't cry! It's not your fault!"
Nami had indeed begun to tear up, her savior had arrived in the form of a two-foot tall crippled old lady with a walking stick. But she didn't complain- because if this old woman hadn't showed up, she could have died.
Allowing this elderly woman to lead her out of the crowd, Nami followed her hero to a small alley off the side of the road. The woman reached up and opened the door skillfully with the tip of her cane. The two of them entered a dark and dusty old room- the furniture all covered in plastic, cardboard boxes piled in the corner, and a small hallway leading off to the left. Nami's eyes wandered around the decrepit area in awe.
"Um… excuse me… do you live here?"
"…yes… please make yourself comfortable." The old lady said, tone noticeably softer than what she used outside. The old lady entered the room and gestured to a couch covered in white plastic. Nami watched as the elder shuffled off into another room. It was quiet, except for the light clattering coming from a different room.
Nami noticed a few things about this room, the fact that it had no windows, the fact that there were no pictures or books, and the fact that it smelled faintly of rotten cheese. There was also the unusual fact that not only the fabric objects were covered in plastic- but wooden things as well. The table in front of her, the cabinets, drawers, desks, everything. Which is why a small box on the other side of the room caught her eye. The only thing other than the floor that was not covered in plastic, or dust.
Suddenly, her eyes seemed to change, as her money hungry side got the best of her manners. The navigator made her way slowly over to the chest- and going closer she noticed a skull with a crown carved immaculately on the top of it.
Curiosity and greed coursing through her veins- Nami threw open the chest easily. A small toy pirate ship rose and fell on the paper waves- as tiny trumpets played a tune to an unknown song. Nami watched in disappointment as a bearded pirate stood frozen on the deck of this ship- sword pointed at the cobweb-ridden ceiling.
'Pheh. A music box.'
"I see you've found her treasure." Spoke a calm voice directly behind her.
Nami, being Nami, jumped and let out a small scream.
"Calm down, girlie. You needn't make a fuss." Said the small lady, making her way to a lounge chair across from the couch. Perching herself upon it with difficulty, she gestured to the couch across from her.
Nami, still shaking from her last surprise, forgot to close the box and made her way immediately over to sit upon the couch again.
Which is when she noticed the tea set.
A small plate was set in front of her, with tea already steaming inside a mug. The redhead heard the slow sipping of the woman across from her- and decidedly picked up her own cup.
A solemn look shaded the wrinkles on the grandmother's face. And she set down her mug carefully on the plate she held in her other hand. Nami, noticing the sudden atmosphere change, set hers down as well.
"Rudder." Said the woman in all seriousness.
If Nami had been expecting something, it had not been that.
"Um.. .ex.. excuse me?" stuttered the young navigator- looking extremely bewildered.
"Rudder. It's what he used to call her."
"Sorry, who used to call who…?"
"A brother, to his younger sister."
"And who would…"
"Silence, child! Let me tell my story!" snapped the elder suddenly.
Nami nodded vigorously and backed further into the couch.
"There was a small girl who lived in this town years ago. This lively child was happily risen by her elder brother. Both orphaned at young ages- the boy took it upon himself to raise his baby sister. They loved each other dearly- but the boy had his dreams to chase…" at this, the woman paused, took another sip of tea, and set it back down, "he wanted to be a pirate. Foolish boy."
Nami audibly gasped, but didn't see any point in the tale so far, so she opened her mouth to speak.
"Quiet! You have to know!"
Her mouth snapped shut.
"The tiny girl was barely four when her brother turned eighteen. And this is when he decided to start a crew. He disappeared one day- abandoning his sister for an entire year."
"What happened to he…"
"Insolence! Stop speaking out of turn and I'll tell you."
She took another slow sip of tea.
"The girl was placed in my care. And I proceeded to raise her in his absence. After all… that would be my duty as her grandmother."
This time, the elderly woman didn't snap at her.
"Yes… my adorable grandchild would ask every day. Ask where he went. When he would be back. It was heart-wrenching. The town resented our entire family for even being related to the 'traitor,' as they called him. I was forced to board up the windows- since they were broken every day. By this time, the young idiot had made a name for himself in the Grand Line. Which made our family all the more condemned. It was absolutely terrible for the child- who had figured something was wrong. She started to stay quiet, her smiles came out fake, and she began to lose faith in her brother's return. But on her fifth birthday- her brother made an entrance into our small apartment." A smile crept over the features of the old grandmother's face and she took another sip of tea.
"He came in singing her favorite pirate song, 'The Pirate King.' And he gave her a small teddy bear and that music box. He told her outrageous stories of which I strongly disapproved- but the smile on her face was so pure and delighted- I couldn't bring myself stop him."
Nami stayed in shocked silence as the woman drank from the mug again before continuing.
"She keeps the bear with her wherever she goes. But left the box here with me when she left."
"'Left'…? But why?" Nami said, genuinely interested now.
"Well, for the longest time I kept her from going outside. There were savages waiting out there after all. Claiming that her brother was a rogue and a traitor. And the day he left again, I knew things would change."
She paused there, looking sadly into her tea cup, obviously seeing something Nami could not.
"She wanted to become a pirate."
Here, Nami gasped again.
"She left without a word's notice. I came back from the shop one day- and found she had gone. And all that she left behind was the music box. She was five."
"And what happened to her? What does this have to do with what happened today?!"
"I'm getting there. Now, this particular girl had a distinct appearance compared to other folks, her and her brother. But, as I heard from rumors, she had chosen to hide this."
"Hide…? What did she do?"
"Well… her brother… I think he said something to her before he left. At the time… I had left the room to get out the cookies from the oven- couldn't just let him leave without my special oatmeal cookies, you know- the girl had told him all about her plans to become a pirate. And do you know what he said?"
Her eyes shadowed over, as she sipped once more. Nami sucked in a breath.
"He told her… 'girls can't be pirates. Give up.' Her own role model… telling her to give up! Well, naturally, it had been devastating for her. That night, she cried dreadfully- not even bothering to see her own kin off! And the day after that- she was gone. Of course, weeks past with no word. But soon, rumors were flying around town like wildfire about how the girl would beat up everyone who came within her sights. She was ridiculed, spit upon, chased, and she fought men five times her size. She had to steal and fight in order to survive. Don't get me wrong- the bandages are part of her disguise- but many of those bandages are necessary. Anyway, her consistent fighting is why people are scared of her, why they set sponges out, why they thought you were her… they haven't seen what she really looks like for awhile. But they know she had red hair. Naturally, when they saw you, they wanted to unleash their wrath on you as payback- because there aren't any redheads around here."
At this, she put her mug down on the plate carefully, jumped off the chair, and placed the dish back on the platter. Nami's cup sat on the table, long forgotten.
"You may ask questions now."
Letting out a long breath, Nami started.
"What happened to the girl?!"
"Why, haven't you realized? She's on your ship right now."
"EH?!" screamed Nami, leaping up from her seat on the couch.
"Settle down, settle down! That ridiculous sombrero-wearer. She uses that get-up to mask her gender. Silly child!"
"Y-You mean ROY?!"
"FOOLISH GIRL! Her name is 'Rose.' Do you think she'd go by that name if she was trying to be a boy?!"
"I.. I guess not…"
The old woman shook her head disapprovingly.
"Honestly. That girl. Growing up the way she did, I'm surprised she's not insane."
"Well, for one, her view of her brother came distorted over the years. And I think she's come to hate him now, no matter how close they were before, she has completely forgotten. And she was bullied by the town all her life. She had no true childhood. No authority figures. Not to mention that Devil's fruit she ate…"
"Ever wonder why the people of this town set out sponges in front of their doors?"
"I thought it was strange…" admitted Nami.
"She can control water. And turn into water. She stole, made her own house, got bullied, and fought all on her own. I wouldn't be surprised if her opinion of people has changed."
"Sounds like she had it tough… But I saw her laughing with someone today."
The redhead leapt in surprise at the woman's outburst.
"Y-Y-YES! Down by the docks! There was this boy, who also joined our crew!"
"She has a friend?! Oh thank goodness… I was afraid she had forgotten how to laugh… But, growing up with that boy, I guess it was pretty hard."
There was a moment of silence, before Nami felt the need to know one more thing.
"Sorry to ask… But who was the brother?"
"Shanks," said the woman emotionlessly, "that lazy boy gallivanting in who knows where with that silly little straw hat of his…"
"Shanks?! The infamous pirate, Red-haired Shanks?! HIM!?"
"That's what I said, isn't it?"
"That was her brother?!" said Nami in a voice an octave higher than her normal one.
"Yes. You realize if you know him, right? He's not the type of person to tell someone that… But…" She picked up the tea tray after placing Nami's cup tenderly upon it, and turned her back on the redhead, "he loved her. And as every person should very well know… The sea is a dangerous place, and he didn't want his precious sister out there in such danger. She just thought… That he didn't want her to be happy. Or that he was underestimating her skill. Yes… Something along those lines…" The elderly woman began to hobble her way out of the room.
She paused, turned her head slightly, and said "mind bringing that music box to the girl? It means a lot to her… And it would mean a lot to me… Repayment, so to speak?"
Nami snapped out of her daze, and nodded hastily. The old woman smiled.
"Thank you," she stated simply, and began walking again.
"W-wait! One more thing! Why did you tell me all this?!"
"Having a woman crewmate on her side will help her greatly. When she sees you on the crew… she'll have second thoughts about hiding her gender."
"But.. ma'am, I'm only a co-operator. I can't do that."
The woman merely chuckled, before disappearing into the dark hallway.
"In time, we shall see. Farewell, Nami. Tell my idiot granddaughter that I said 'hello.'
And with that, Nami was left in a dark and musty house, staring after the chuckling woman, with the complete opposite face she was wearing only twenty minutes earlier in the streets.
Poor Nami, even without the boys, her day gets ruined.
Meanwhile, on one of our favorite ships in the East Blue, a certain chaos had been unleashed- courtesy of a new member of the Strawhat crew.
Rose wondered solemnly as she shifted her weight from her left to right foot- how on Earth she had gotten herself into this situation so quickly.
The young teen didn't have a copy of 'Joining a Pirate Crew: What Not to Do' on hand, so she surely was not expected to know what NOT to do when joining a pirate crew.
Which, she guessed, is how she found herself in her current situation- and cursed the fact that she had not taken the initiative to go to a library and check out such a book.
The girl's head drooped hopelessly.
'I blame the ketchup.'
A loud sound erupted from right beside her- making her jump nearly ten feet in the air.
"STAY STILL!" screamed an overly angry captain, chasing down his new crewmate.
"STAY AWAY FROM ME!" yelled the girl frantically over her shoulder- not pausing in her desperate dash around the entire ship.
"LUFFY STOP BREAKING THE SHIP!" bellowed the sharpshooter in obvious distress- and louder than both of the other's yells combined.
"Sorry, Usopp!" said Luffy apologetically as he sprinted past him mid-deck. Then he paused, and stared at the long-nosed boy for a second.
"USOPP! YOU'RE OK!"
"YES LUFFY, I'M FINE! Just stop breaking the ship!"
"I'll try!" said the boy with a smile, running once more after his target, but noticeably far behind now.
Streams of anime tears ran across the paper-thin bandages strewn across the unfortunate teen's face.
"LUFFY! NO! YOU MIGHT BREAK S-"
A sort of battle cry sounded behind the panicked girl- and she attempted to run faster- letting out a scream of her own.
She turned a corner around some mikan trees just as the sound of splitting wood once again echoed through the harbor.
The boy had literally launched himself at the fleeing girl- headfirst.
"LUFFY!" shouted Usopp angrily- but with a hint of concern as he rushed over to that side of the ship.
'Saved!' thought Rose joyfully, diving into the trees and taking refuge there.
Out of the falling pieces of wood and dust- Luffy emerged with a hand on his straw hat.
"Where'd he go? I'll beat him up!" he said, narrowing his eyes and looking around deck- completely ignoring the persistent scolding of his long-nosed crewmate.
"....LP ME CLEAN THIS U- OI LUFFY!? ARE YOU EVEN LISTENING TO ME?!!?"
"Where did that guy go?!" said Luffy, springing to his feet.
"How should I know?! Probably hiding from you! Now help me fix the ship!"
"Thanks, Usopp!" Luffy said, smiling again, and heading off to look for the hiding place.
Usopp was left staring wordlessly at his retreating back- then grumbled furiously, turning to the wrecked piece of ship.
The sound of the captain's sandals slapping against wood faded- and Rose felt it safe to crawl out from her hiding place.
"Thanks, Usopp! You saved me!" said Rose, patting the sniper unexpectedly on his back.
He trembled slightly- and he jumped, turning around as he did so, landing in an off-looking kung-fu position on one foot.
Rose laughed lightly at him.
"Sorry! Didn't mean to surpri-"
Both Usopp and Rose jumped at the sudden voice whispering venomously behind them.
The sharpshooter- being the brave and and daring man he was- hid behind Rose upon seeing who it was.
"N-Nami!" he said nervously- visibly shaking- "How was your t-trip?"
The poncho-wearer chose this point to turn around- finding a demonic-looking redhead- a dark sort of aura flowing from her.
'She's scarier than any man I've ever fought...'
The navigator began advancing- fist raised and shaking in front of her shadowed eyes.
"While you were all off destroying the ship..."
"That was Luffy!" interjected Usopp- before disappearing behind Rose again.
Nami pretended not to hear him and continued her slow yet deadly steps toward the pair. Rose unconsciously took a step back.
"I was shot at by someone in town. I could have died, you see."
'I'd prefer Luffy to her right now!' thought the water user desperately, then she froze.
"Wait... you got shot at?" said Rose blankly, forgetting the situation.
"Yes..." Nami spoke between grinding teeth, and now, right in front of them, she lifted her fist.
"EEK! SPARE ME!" shrieked Rose, suddenly aware of the situation, and throwing her arms in front of her face whilst closing her eyes.
One of the wrists shielding her from getting pummeled was grabbed gently.
"...Eh?" said the teen cautiously- opening one eye and surprised she wasn't dead.
"We need to talk."
"W-we?" said Rose weakly- eye twitching.
"Yes, we. Oh but first..."
She relinquished her hold on the sombero-bearer wrist- made her way around the girl to a relieved Usopp- and proceeded to beat him to a pulp.
"YOU! Get that idiot captain and swordsman to help you clean up and repair the ship! We're setting sail soon!"
"Yes Nami. Sorry Nami. We'll get right on it Nami." said the poor sniper- face full of bruises and bumps.
The navigator released the boy's collar and let him slump to the ground- turning back to a trembling witness.
"Ready to talk?"
'No. No I'm not. I prefer life.'
Taking the silence as a yes, her wrist was yet again snatched, and she found herself being dragged rather roughly towards the kitchen.
As her impending doom grew closer with every tug and yank- the waterworks started automatically- as the anime tears streamed down her face for what seemed the thirtieth time today.
'I've gone and joined a crew of psychos!' thought a distressed girl, as the door to her execution platform swung open.
End of Chapter 3.
That was the worst ending ever. :| HAHA ANDY. YOU WERE HARDLY IN THIS CHAPTER.
Andy: Go die.
Emma: You're just jealous of my main character-ness.
ANYWAY. Three days! Or sooner, if I feel inspired! Really, much thanks to LuffyxRuby for the review! I really appreciate it! Since it was my first one EVER! Just feel happy I extended this chapter by at least 500 words. I felt the need to include Luffy. NO. This is NOT a fic about instant love or love at first sight. It will take TIME. It will probably be farrrrrrr into the story before even one romantic feeling pops into Rose's head! She may even fall for someone else first! Which is why humor is an included topic. Anyway, I love you all, and I hope you enjoyed reading this!
Andy: You talk too much. -Looks back down at manga.-
Emma: I will burn that manga into a thousand tiny toasty tidbits.
Emma: Yeah, well. I hope to see you all again in three days! Have a nice day!
Andy: Pffttt. Lame.
Emma: -Gets out flamethrower.-