Disclaimer: I do not own One Piece.
A/N: I noticed something was going on when I noticed a lot of *spoilers 574* all over the just in stories...I quickly went to onemanga to read the chapter that caused so much of a commotion. *sighs deeply* I had a tinge of feeling but I wished that it wasn't true. I'm still not believing it. Maybe...maybe some startling miracle happens...I'm hoping...but for now, I am in despair.
The first present day dying character in One Piece history...and it was my second favorite character...*sobs*
This is a dedication for Portgas D. Ace.
We will miss you.
Zoro had heard it. It was news that was hard to miss. Portgas D. Ace, Luffy brother, had died. He never read it in the daily newspaper from the sky postbirds; that information wasn't released into the world yet. Plus it was probably something the marines wanted to hide; from the annoying screams from Perona in the gigantic theatre room, the marine headquarters was having major difficulties about the execution and would not show any clear details.
He didn't need to read it.
He felt it.
The pain from his captain. The pain of losing someone so close to him; he had that feeling before.
When he heard the news from Perona about Ace in Impel Down, the swordsman was dumbfounded. He didn't want to believe that the brother of Luffy was caught. Hearing that Luffy was attacking Marine headquarters later brought many emotions toward the swordsman.
Would Luffy make it in time?
Would Luffy be okay fighting all by himself?
He wanted to get out of this island and aid Luffy. Ace was his captain's brother; he would risk anything to help. The only thing he could do was hope that his captain would be safe and sound with his older brother free from the shackles.
But it all came in a flash. Like a huge gust of wind, it hit Zoro and he felt every bit of it through his bones, his soul. The life of Ace had ended. The words were so simple, like blowing the fire of a candle. How could the man so important to Luffy be lost so quickly? Does this mean that Luffy didn't make it in time? He didn't know how the man died but he felt the immense sadness from his captain. It pounded against his chest and it weighed like tons in his heart.
He also felt another dread-another death. A wave of uncertainty crumbled on him; something terrible was approaching. Ace was an important man because the world was shifting, changing because of his actions.
Zoro departed the room where he and Perona were having breakfast and rushed to the edge of the balcony. He had no clue where the direction of the Marine headquarters was but the knots of emotions unraveled and he screamed. He screamed for his captain, he screamed for Ace, and he screamed at himself for not being there to help.
If he were stronger, this all wouldn't have happened. Kizaru wouldn't have been much of a trouble and probably they would be in the same place where Luffy was, fighting for Ace's freedom.
Zoro, along with Perona, wandered around the dark forests to pick flowers. It was difficult to find anything in the ink blackness of the forests that surrounded the castle, but they managed to find some. Moonlight droplet was the name of the flowers they found. The petals were pure white and looked somewhat of a lily except it glowed in a faint yellow color. He bundled a batch with a black string and threw it into the ocean. Perona didn't know Ace as much as him; well, Zoro really didn't know anything about him either, but the phantom princess was sobbing in tears for the unknown man. They both watched as the bouquet of flowers slowly faded into the horizon.
Zoro closed his eyes and silently prayed.
He swore under his breath, through his tears, that he would be stronger than before. He would be stronger for his captain so he could protect everyone. He would be stronger for himself so his captain wouldn't worry. He would be stronger so he would never go through this sorrow.
He never wanted collect flowers for this ever again.