Hot Shot's girl: So sorry for the wait, but I had this chp written for about two weeks and just never got the chance to head over to the library and update because I was busy one week and then sick the next -_- ugh, but I'm better now. Still don't know if I'll be able to update quicker though. Remember my novel, I'm just about ready to start writing it so wish me luck! ^-^ anyways, this chp is a little short for me, but enjoy :) Again, sorry for making you lovely fans worry -3-

"What . . . the he- - . . . did you say? !" Sengoku was never one for practical jokes and he knew the one who told him this 'joke', whatever it was, wasn't one either.

So as his eyes narrowed and teeth bared he stared at the large Werewolf. He wanted answers NOW and explanations and he made it VERY clear that he was to get them at once. Placing his hands on the table he glared intently at the Immortal Lord, Alpha Bartholomew Kuma who seemed to be the bearer of 'bad' news.

"Roronoa Zoro," Kuma repeated once more for the stunned humans to comprehend. "Is a Mene'ki."

It had been confirmed. The Hunters' worst fears, the Mene'ki returning, being born again. What made this even worse was that he was sired by another Mene'ki! That could mean anything! It could mean other Mene'ki could birth Mene'ki, or just his line will come to sire Mene'ki. Whatever it could be it wasn't good, especially for the humans.

Sengoku could barely move, sure his body was trembling but he wasn't too sure if it was fear or anger. It seemed to be something dead center between the two. All he knew is that if this got out it'd cause a global panic with the humans. He couldn't have that at all. The Hunters were supposed to protect their kind from threats like these, from those creatures.

Nothing was really said after this information was laid down before the Immortal Lords who had decided to show up there and the Hunter officers there, all looking at Sengoku to speak their dislikes about this.

Sengoku closed his eyes tightly for a moment before he opened them to stare at the Immortal Lords there, all surprised except two . . . Kuma, who had given the information to them, and Mihawk . . . the sire of the youngest Mene'ki. Sengoku's gaze fell on Mihawk and glared him down—the Hunters had told, ORDERED, this Werewolf to take his pup to get tested but Mihawk had refused for decades and now he saw the reason why . . . he wasn't acting like the arrogant Immortal Lord he was . . . but protecting his pup from a lifetime of hunting or imprisonment.

"Dracule Mihawk," Sengoku growled, clenching his fists as all eyes fell on the sire of the pup who just silently sat there with his arms crossed and eyes closed. "Care to explain why the HE- - you didn't care to tell us about your child being born a Mene'ki? !"

Shanks, who was also there, was just a shocked as everyone else. He turned and looked at Mihawk who made no motion to move or even speak. Shanks was now growing concerned for him. He now understood why Mihawk had been so protective over his pup . . . such a secret could get him killed, the pup that is.

"Mihawk," Shanks whispered, it was a low whisper, but Mihawk and the others heard it.

Mihawk opened his golden eyes and glanced to his left, where Shanks was sitting some feet from him and then to his right, where the other Immortal Lords, such as Alpha Jimbei, and Alpha Bartholomew Kuma, who had just betrayed the protection of the uncursed. Closing his eyes once again he opened his lips and spoke.

"I had no reason to tell the Hunters."

"Yes you da- - well did!" Sengoku spat, pointing at the one he knew was at fault. "Why the he- - do you think we order those tests for sucklings and pups! ?"

"It was to my beliefs that you order those to weed out the Mene'ki and if one should ever be born again you'd take them away, preferably killing them," Mihawk replied, lifting his gaze to meet the Head Hunter's who was standing across from the meeting table, still pointing accusingly at him.

Sengoku grinded his teeth together and nearly slammed his fists onto the meeting table, destroying it. But he refrained, he had to keep his calm—the best he could.

"I had been informed about a Hunter who had returned from a—specialized mission concerning a count of such Mene'ki, that there were more. He kept ranting saying they had multiplied, but we paid no heed to it. Thinking it was just the rambling of a, now, madman we sent him off to a ward," Sengoku replied straightening his collar, trying to sound as 'calm' as possible so not to give anything the Immortal Lords didn't need to know away. "How old is your pup again Dracule?"

"I need not to tell you," Mihawk said, tilting his chin up and closing his eyes, they had no right to force him and he had no right to tell them.

Sengoku sighed out before rubbing his temples. "Last reported he was nearing his 2nd century. So I assume he's in his late teens, as you Werewolves would say. Da- - . . . that is too young for a Mene'ki to be. That and he was born from another Mene'ki, da- - it all, how could we be so careless? !"

"What are you going to do exactly?" Shanks asked, narrowing his eyes at the Hunter knowing that the treaty Head Blood Roger died for is against the hunting of any more Mene'ki.

"Well," Sengoku looked at the redhead and cleared his throat. "If it is okay with his sire, we'd like to understand how a Mene'ki came to be born from another Mene'ki. This had never happened before so we're quite curious."

Shanks was about to say something when everyone heard Mihawk scoff. They turned to see him chuckle a little before opening his eyes and frowning deepening at the Head Hunter and his 'proposal'.

"You take us for fools Sengoku?" Mihawk said, his tone deep and bitter. "So innocently you say you'd like to find out how this happened when in truth you want to find out so you may prevent any other Mene'ki, if they can bare any child, from it happening again. Once you find that you will kill my pup."

Shanks' jaw dropped. Was it just him or had he not been with the Hunters long enough to understand that they were indeed not acknowledging the treaty his Head Blood, Gol D. Roger, had died for? It seemed to him that Mihawk, and even the others knew better, knew of the Hunters' true intentions.

That was just wrong!

"Is that really what they'll do?" Shanks asked, standing up and looking at Mihawk who was now sitting upright in his chair.

Mihawk turned intense eyes to the redhead and closed them before shaking his head and standing up. Glancing back at the Hunters, who looked a little more tense than normal, he waved towards them saying—

"Ask them . . . even if they refuse you know what liars sound like."

At that Mihawk turned and left, the other Immortal Lords wondering if they'd ever see that Immortal Lord again—since his very pup was now threatened by the Hunters. The Hunters thought about this too so Sengoku called out after his retreating form.

"Dracule! Come back!" He said, knowing how upset the Hunter Elders would be finding out that Wolf Prince Dracule Mihawk had left their ranks because of this . . . but Sengoku knew the Elders would agree to get rid of the young Mene'ki above all else, they couldn't allow those creatures to resurface again, not when they had tried so hard to be rid of them nearly 400 years ago. "Da- - it!"

"So," Shanks turned to Sengoku with a stern glare. "What are you going to do with his pup?"

Sengoku could tell, by the look in the Blood Prince's eyes that if he answered wrong he'd leave as well. They were loosing too many Immortal Lords and Sengoku wondered if he could handle this headache.

"So . . . someone finally told them," Whitebeard nodded before turning his eternal silver gaze towards the pale raven-haired Wolf Prince who stood at his side with his arms crossed. "And it was one of our own."

"It seems that that Kuma doesn't seem to care much about the preservation of the Mene'ki," Mihawk replied, his gaze off into the distance as he and Head Alpha Whitebeard gazed at the comings and goings of others wolves in the Head Pack.

"I think he just wants to see what unfolds, and what the Hunters will do," Whitebeard said, taking a swig from his drink.

"We all know what the Hunters will do," Mihawk stated, looking up at the white wolf.

"Aye, we do," Whitebeard nodded. "From the very moment that treaty was made, to end the hunts of the Mene'ki, I knew the Hunters, being the forgetful humans they are, would in too short a time forget Roger's sacrifice."

Mihawk bowed his head and closed his eyes with a frown. The head of the royal family, Gol D. Roger, from the eldest line, the Head Blood, had paid the ultimate price to save all Mene'ki, Vampire and Werewolf alike. Mihawk probably couldn't be here if it hadn't been for that noble Vampire. So what the Hunters were doing was upsetting to both the Vampires and Werewolves.

"They'll hunt for him now—more than ever," Mihawk replied, opening his eyes to gaze at a few Wolf Worriers conversing with each other.

"Then, are you going to do anything about it?" Whitebeard asked, looking down at the young wolf, well—young compared to himself.

Mihawk remained silent though. He didn't answer the Head Alpha because he didn't know what to do . . . especially after what he had heard Kuma said.

"Kuma said Zoro had died," Mihawk replied, Whitebeard froze in his drink and looked down at Mihawk with a raised brow.

"You and I both know it's not true," Whitebeard said. "Especially you, you can feel it when your pup's ties to life are cut."

"As can you, Head Alpha," Mihawk said, a small upturn at the corner of his lips formed as he looked up at the Head Alpha.

"Aye, but not as well as you," Whitebeard pointed. "I can tell if a wolf dies, but which one is unclear. Sometimes I wonder if I'm such a good Head Alpha, heh, ha."

After he took another chug Mihawk sighed out and looked into another direction.

"Not just that," he whispered. "I know you felt it . . . those two weeks ago."

Whitebeard placed his drink next to him, inhaled and exhaled a serious sigh. He opened his eyes to look fondly at his Pack before looking down at Mihawk who stared up at him with serious golden eyes—those eyes—so much like his Sire's.

"My time is coming to an end," Whitebeard replied with a nod, looking up to see clear blue skies. "I know everyone felt it."

"The birth of a new Head Alpha," Mihawk nodded, continuing to keep his arms crossed as he watched other wolves speak about just what they were talking about—a new Head Alpha.

"Aye," Whitebeard nodded. "And one so young."

"You weren't the only one surprised," Mihawk smiled fondly for a little while before shaking his head. "They all think it's me."

"They know better," Whitebeard said, glancing down at the Wolf Prince. "They all knows the signs, especially the wolves here. They see me on a daily basis and so should know what one should look, and feel, like."

"Yes, but not all of them are so bright," Mihawk chuckled. "It's just odd . . . how this came to be."

"But he was chosen by our ancestor. No one shall deny his right to the title," Whitebeard said with a nod. "It's just getting him to return here that'll be the problem," at that Whitebeard once again took up his drink and drank deep.

"Heh, good luck," Mihawk let off a small chuckle. "I highly doubt he even knows it himself. He's much too shallow."

"Yes, but . . ." Whitebeard grimaced, a frown forming on his features. "By what you said . . . he may not live long as one."

Mihawk frowned with him and scowled at the thought of those da- - Hunters denying a new Head Alpha from living out his destiny. They'd have to do something about that.

"Then . . . what do you plan—Head Alpha?" Mihawk asked, looking up at Whitebeard whose silver eyes were gazing into thought.

"Something," Whitebeard mumbled before crossing his arms and leaning back against the large tree trunk he had been sitting before.

Still, Mihawk could help but smile fondly. He hadn't believed it that his own pup would end up taking such a title before him or any older Wolf Prince, but the Wolf Princess' prediction was true. His pup . . . Head Alpha . . . he couldn't be more proud.

"I've seen that look before," Whitebeard noted, looking down at Mihawk. "It's the look of a proud parent."

"And I should be," Mihawk nodded, that smile still lingering on his pale lips. "It's not every day a sire gets to see his own pup become Head Alpha, all on his own."

Whitebeard smiled and agreed with a nod. Mihawk should be proud and Whitebeard didn't want to ruin the moment for him. He knew what it was like to feel such a thing, perhaps not to its full extent seeing how he was never a real father, and he wanted Mihawk to continue to revel in it . . . but he knew that the thought of the Hunters' ill intent would quickly push it aside.

And he just couldn't have that at all.

"So what do you think?" Nami asked, looking at everyone as they sat down to eat breakfast. "Do you think Zoro's going to bolt again?"

"He'd better not!" Chopper suddenly stood up, slamming his small hands down on the table. "He needs to stay so he can heal!"

"Oh, is that your excuse for getting him to stay for a little while longer?" Sanji snickered, coming towards the Weredoctor to give him his breakfast.

Chopper suddenly turned his head away, his cheeks all ablush.

"N-No, it's just . . . he needs to take it easy for a while and traveling can put a strain on his wounds. Sure he heals pretty quick but . . ." Chopper bowed his head as he poked at his breakfast.

"We get it buddy," Sanji patted the young pup before serving the others. "We want him to stay as well."

"It feels like it's been forever since he left," Usopp let out a sigh, taking a bite of his eggs. "I'm glad he's back and all, but like what Nami said . . . when do you think he'll leave?"

"Who said he is?" Franky spoke up, mouth full of food. "Let's have some hope that he missed us just as bad as we missed him."

"Tch, that da- - dog isn't going anywhere for a while," Sanji muttered, shaking his head. "We'll make sure of that, right guys?"

"Hey," Nami spoke up, looking around. "Luffy's still not back from his visit?"

"Nope," Sanji said plainly. "I'd give them their meals and all, but . . . let's face it those two probably aren't hungry."

"Well, Luffy better be trying his da- -ed best to convince Zoro to stay!" Nami pointed out with a cross of her arms. "I can't handle that idiot getting depressed when Zoro decides to leave again."

"I'm pretty sure he is," Sanji said, letting out a sigh of smoke before turning to head back towards the kitchen, not even catching Robin's knowing smile behind her book.

"Let's eat then shall we?" Robin smiled and placed her book beside her plate. "I'm sure you're all happy about our Blood Prince not being here to nab our meals, so enjoy his abstinence while you can."

"She's right!" Nami chirped. "Eat up guys!"

Luffy let out a moan as the Werewolf's fangs sank inside his neck again, close to the previous spot they had once occupied, but not the same. Every time Zoro did this he was gentle and it drove Luffy crazy, as his memory recalls Zoro had always been rough in their feedings, but things have changed recently—it's like he's got a whole new control over the animal inside and Luffy really wasn't sure if he appreciated it or just missed that rough passion

And, like last time the wolf fed, Zoro detached his lips from the Vampire's neck and came to give him a bloody kiss which Luffy eagerly accepted, tasting his own blood on the wolf's tongue always made him shiver in the most delectable of ways.

Luffy sighed into the kiss and let his eyes continue to stay closed. There was no need to see his lover, just feel. And that is what the two did and have been doing for a long while. Once the green wolf pulled away Luffy decided to open his eyes and look at him. He watched the wolf sit up and turn away from him, a gesture usually signaling something was on his mind, something that was usually troubling him.

"Zoro? What's wrong?" Luffy sat up and leant forward, feeling if Zoro were any further from him he'd die.

Zoro lifted his head and gazed at the wall before him. Without even turning his head he spoke.

"Tonight's . . ."

Luffy only patiently waited and watched Zoro turn his face towards him, a heavy look on his features that made Luffy worry if he had done something wrong.

"The New Moon," Zoro finished, his silver eyes falling down to glance away from Luffy.

Cocking his head to the side in confusion Luffy only giggled. He sighed and shook his head before coming to scoot closer towards the wolf before wrapping his arms around his thick neck and shoulders.

"Is that all?" Luffy chuckled before nuzzling his nose on Zoro's jaw, the part right next to his ear, a spot on the wolf that made him shiver when caressed.

"Luffy," Zoro sighed out. "This is serious."

"And I told you I don't care," Luffy said, his deep brown eyes gazing into Zoro's newly silver ones.

"You'd be willing to go through that . . . again?" Zoro asked. "I've been on my own for only a few New Moons, but I was alone during those times. I don't know what I'd do when I was with someone—especially you."

At that Zoro leant down, planting a tender kiss on the New Fang's collarbone making the boy let out a content sigh and once again close his eyes.

"You can't know until you try," Luffy replied, giving that smile of his as he tightened his grip around the Werewolf.

Luffy's smile only broadened as he watched his lover's smile widen to that of such kindness and willingness that he thought he'd just melt. There was only a slight nod but Luffy saw it and so leant forward, laying his head against Zoro's toned, and still bandaged, chest.

"Thank you Zoro . . . for staying," Luffy said, his smile so bittersweet Zoro could hear it in his tone.

"I told you I won't leave you again," Zoro said, nuzzling his face against Luffy's raven locks. "And I don't like breaking promises."

"Neither do I," Luffy smiled, feeling that great content with just lying in his lover's arms. "Besides . . ."

Luffy pulled away from Zoro's grasp and looked up at him with a devious smirk, his hands on his hips and eyebrows wiggling.

"I've been wanting some rough sex from you."

"W-What?" Zoro nearly choked on his own spit from hearing Luffy say that.

"I'm serious," Luffy whined, crossing his arms and furrowing his brow like he was upset. "Every time now it's always been gentle, I like that, it's fine, but when I really want you to be more rough you always ignore me."

"Luffy," Zoro sighed, shaking his head as if he were talking to a child. "The reason being is that I don't want to hurt you. I said I'd never do that again."

"Yada, yada, how many times do I have to say 'I. Don't. Care.'?" Luffy let out a sigh, looking at the green wolf. "Besides, even if you ignore me, come tonight I guess I'll just get what I want."

Luffy giggled inwardly once he watched that predatory smirk cross Zoro's features. Now he hadn't seen that look in a long, long time.

"You're a cheeky bast- - - aren't you?" Zoro said, that smirk still gracing his features, his eyes even shining a dark strange sheen.

"The one and only," Luffy chuckled, holding up his index finger to signal '1'.

Luffy smiled as he watched Zoro's shoulders shake until he began laughing. Luffy was about to laugh with him just because he felt like it when the wolf suddenly tackled him, pinning him to the bed. Luffy didn't do anything but stare up into those silver eyes that seemed to glow in a dark light, such a look Luffy had been waiting for, for a while.

"You still like that animalistic side don't you?" Zoro asked, tilting his head to the side, his fangs bared through his lips as it widened in its smirk.

"Maaaybeee," Luffy glanced away like he was some naive child and once he looked back at Zoro he watched the wolf snicker and suddenly sit back on his heels, himself still gazing at the Blood Prince with that dark look.

"Alright then," Zoro grinned, it almost looked sinister, but Luffy knew this was only another side of Zoro that had been dormant for a while—Luffy had seen this side of the wolf more than once, like during their Full Moon Initiation and the New Moon's Night.

Luffy let out a slight gasp as he watched the wolf's clawed hands grasp his ankles, not too tight, but not too gentle either. Luffy smirked and propped up on his elbows to lean up and watch the wolf better.

"You want it rough," Zoro continued, his tongue coming out to lick at his fangs before retreating back between the teeth. "How about a test-run then, before that da- -ed moon comes?"

With a dominating growl Zoro flipped the boy over, roughly slamming him into the mattress before crawling on top of him and pinning him down. Luffy let out a slight hiss feeling Zoro's claws dig into his thighs as he took a hold of them and pressed them against his own hips.

Luffy let out a groan as Zoro's larger, heavier, body descended upon him and pressed him more firmly into the mattress. He wasn't in pain or anything and he could endure Zoro falling asleep on him, but still Luffy was turned on and Zoro better NOT back out on him.

Luffy absolutely loved being dominated by this wolf, but of course there was always that wonder in his mind to what would happen if Luffy was the one dominating for a change. That thought would have to wait for later, his mind was needed 'elsewhere' at the moment.

"What do you say . . . Luffy?" Zoro whispered huskily in the raven's ear before giving the shell a thick wet lick, making the boy writhe and shiver under him.

"I, guh, like the sound, heh, of that," Luffy worded, his mind soon fogging up with a familiar feeling, knowing he would soon be reduced to something that couldn't even speak straight anymore.

"You know . . . he doesn't look too good. I thought you said he'd get better once he was fed?"

"He should be better, but something is clearly wrong."

"No duh! Doc, what is the matter with him this time?"

The whole group turned to the sickly doctor as he knelt down next to the horribly looking Vampire who just about laid there motionless, like some corpse. He examined him for a while before checking on his pulse.

Letting out sigh he rubbed the back of his neck before looking at the others.

"I'm not too sure, but it looks like his body is shutting down," the Doc informed.

"Why the he- - why? !" Blackbeard suddenly shouted, outraged that his feeding source was, as Doc Q literally put it, dying.

"It's as if he's willing it," Doc Q said, looking back at everyone.

"Well . . . that certainly is unexpected," Auger spoke up, tilting his head to the side, gazing at the dying Vampire.

"Is there nothing we can do then?" Burgess spoke up, waving his large arms around. "That's the boss's only feeding source. He's still not a wolf yet so—"

"We all know that Burgess," Laffitte spoke up, a frown actually plastered on his pale, pale face. "But if he's dying on his own then can we really help him?"

There was a silence now as every eye fell upon Blood Prince Ace. Lying there, his hands actually not bound this time because of his weak state, one lonely thin blanket covering his fevered body. His body was shaking all over and red painted his face from a forced fever—simply unheard of by the others.

"That little brat!" Blackbeard growled, his claws coming out as his fangs clamped together tightly. "He's doing this on purpose. He'd rather be dead than helping me take power! Filthy Vampire!"

Just by saying that Blackbeard caught the wary glances by the Vampires in his group, but he paid them no mind. His anger towards the Blood Prince was too great and he didn't know how to react.

"I can't let him die," Blackbeard growled to himself. "There's got to be something!"

"There is no medicine that can cure what the boy is doing to himself," Doc Q said, shaking his head. "I fear that even if I do give him medical treatment he'd only force his body to reject it. I've never seen such a strong will before in my life. Surely he is the son of the late Head Blood, Gol D. Roger."

"So . . . what do we do then?" Burgess asked, looking towards their leader who continued to shake in anger.

"Da- - it, even if I have to take him to Hunter medics he's not getting out of this!" Blackbeard growled, stomping over to where Ace lay, panting out in fever, the Vampire forcing his body to shut down and leave the da- -ed Werewolf. "You hear that boy! I'll take you to the humans if I have to!"

"Is that right?" Doflamingo leaned back in his 'throne' and kicked his feet up on the tree stump before him. "Well now, that's different."

"Yes lord Alpha Doflamingo," one of his Pack members said, keeping his face pointed towards the dirt. "Immortal Lord Alpha Bartholomew Kuma said it himself."

"So now that the Hunters know there is another Mene'ki, one so young even, what do you think they'll do?" Doflamingo's amused smirk never left his lips as he turned to look at the others around him.

"Uh, well Alpha, they'll probably hunt him down," one answered.

"Yeah, we know those Hunters forgot about the treaty made by the late Head Blood, Gol D. Roger, concerning the Mene'ki," another spoke.

"But the Mene'ki were just freak accidents," another spoke. "They seemed to appear for a generation or two before vanishing."

"Then, do tell, how come Roronoa was born one?" Doflamingo asked, picking up a piece of meat left beside him and casually watching the others contemplate their ignorant thoughts.

"W-Well . . ."

Figures, they had no clue. No one did. It could have been a freak accident, but having a sire who is also among the Mene'ki is a little harder in getting by in being called an 'accident'.

"Come on you sorry excuses for wolves," Doflamingo chuckled as he leant forward and waved at them all. "His father was a Mene'ki, but oh do tell me how the Hunters reacted when they finally realized a Mene'ki had not only been born again after years of no more birthings, but also from another Mene'ki."

"Well, Alpha, they were appalled. The head, Sengoku, demanded Wolf Prince Mihawk to explain, but he just left," one wolf informed.

"Really?" Doflamingo asked. "So does that mean he's gone for good?"

"We're not sure, no one is," they replied.

"Well then," Doflamingo once again resumed him laidback position. "I wonder what will become of that retched family."

"Alpha, do you think that Wolf Prince Mihawk's line will bear nothing but Mene'ki?" one asked.

"Maybe," Doflamingo shrugged. "If that's the case then Roronoa is as good as a dead dog."

"Brother, wait!" Bellamy suddenly spoke up. "Does that mean you're no longer looking to gain Wolf Prince Roronoa as a part of your Pack?"

"Nah, not now," Doflamingo chuckled, glancing up towards the skies. "I want to see how this unfolds. It'll be fun, no?"

"Shi-!" Nami suddenly gasped, startling everyone.

"What's wrong Nami?" Brook asked, looking confused at the girl.

"Isn't today New Moon?" She asked, looking at everyone.

"Yes," Robin replied with a nod.

"Then—Luffy—Zoro—Shouldn't we—? !" Nami tried to get out what she meant, but couldn't put it into words, the whole subject of the New Moon was even now still sensitive to the others, but they got her meaning nonetheless.

"Yeah, what Nami says," Chopper pointed out. "If you want, I can drug Zoro so he doesn't hur—"

"Calm down young doctor," Robin motioned the pup down.

"Yeah," Sanji spoke up with a nod. "I think that idiot can handle himself this time."

"A-Are you sure?" Chopper asked, still remembering how bad Luffy had looked last time.

"I hate to say it, but I think Zoro's been practicing self control and can handle himself better these nights," Sanji said, letting out a lungful of smoke.

"Really?' Franky spoke up. "But it takes seasoned wolves decades to control such a state."

"That mosshead isn't normal, remember?" Sanji said, giving Franky a slight smirk before taking another drag.

"Well, that's Zoro for you," Usopp smiled that fond smile of his. "I agree with Sanji. He can do this. Trust him for once guys."

"Yeah, but does Luffy need to be with him to bring up the chances of him getting hurt again?" Nami asked, placing her fists on her hips.

"He won't hurt him this time," Robin replied, flipping through another page of her book she was reading.

"Tch, he'd better not. I already swore I'd kick his a- - back into a coma if he did," Sanji grinned, bringing up his fist for emphasis.

It was still around noon and everyone still slept. It wasn't easy for them to sleep through the New Moon like that. It was hard to trust the wolf that had once succumbed to the Moon's influence and hurt their beloved New Fang, but they had to trust him, even if it was just once. They had to give it a chance and so they all managed to fall into slumber as the morning sun rose.

"Morning Chopper!" the loud wakeup call wasn't just for the young doctor it seemed, sure he was the one pounced on but the others still caught that loud shout.

"WAH!" Chopper gasped, his eyes popping open soon to see a New Fang smiling down at him, fangs all pointy and shiny.

"It's about time you wake up," Luffy giggled before getting off of him.

"Uh, Luffy, what are you doing up so—? Wait!" Suddenly Chopper's head jerked back towards the direction Zoro's room lay to only see the wolf leaning against the wall, waiting, with Luffy, for the others to wake up.

Chopper's head quickly snapped back towards Luffy who was now standing straight, everything looking in place. His clothes weren't ripped to shreds, if anything they looked neater, he wasn't a bloody mess, the only marks on him were a few bite marks around his neck and chest, and there was his beloved straw-hat, nestled neatly on top his unkempt raven locks.

Even Zoro looked absolutely normal. Glancing over towards the older wolf Chopper noticed how he casually waited for everyone to wake up, watching Luffy nearly jump on all of them without catching the kicks or punches thrown his way. He actually looked like he was waiting to leave with them.

So did this mean . . . he was . . . staying?

"Alright Luffy, we're up, we're up!" Nami groaned, picking herself up, her eyes still droopy.

Once Nami was awake she looked wide-eyed at the two and looked them over for a good ten seconds before saying anything at all.

"Wait—are you two . . . okay?" she asked wary of the both of them.

"I feel fine, but I don't know about Zoro," Luffy said, his grin plastered to his face once he turned towards the wolf who let off a small blush before turning away and muttering a quick 'I'm fine'. "Yep, we're both fine."

"Are you sure?" Chopper asked, looking on with concern to the both of them. "If you'd like I could give you two a quick checkup and—"

"No," Luffy whined. "We still have to go to Water 7, right Franky?"

"That's right," Franky nodded, standing up and stretching out his muscles.

"Wait, you all still hadn't gotten to Water 7 yet?" Zoro asked, looking at them all with confusion. "But I thought . . ."

"Nope," Franky said with a shake of his head. "The little guy there was so depressed we had to take him on a vacation to heal both physically and mentally, but that didn't turn out so good."

"Ugh, tell me about it," Nami groaned with a roll of her eyes.

"Well . . . I'm really sorry for putting you guys through all that crap," Zoro said, his eyes cast down in shame.

"Well just stay with us and you're forgiven, that simple," Sanji said with a wave of his hand as he helped the ladies pack up.

"I don't plan on leaving again," Zoro replied, his tone serious and determined.

"Good," Nami said with a smile before frowning at the wolf. "'Cause I still have a butt-load of questions for you while we're headed for Water 7. We all do."

"Hhh, kind of figured," Zoro let out a sigh, wondering if it was such a good idea to wake up out of that coma.

"Hm? Brook are you going to come with us? !" Luffy suddenly bounded towards the lengthy Blood Warrior, all wondering how Luffy could move so easily after a certain rough night last night.

"Oh, well I don't know," Brook said, waving his hands before the prince. "My mission has been completed and I should head back to the Head Clan and—"

"Pleeeeeaaaaaassssse!" Luffy pleaded, clasping his hands together to beg his beloved musical Blood Warrior. "Just here, we won't bug you at all after!"

"You mean you won't bug him," Nami added in.

"Well," Brook let out a sigh and rubbed his afro. "I suppose I could, but after that I'll have to report back to the Head Clan."

"Yeah!" Luffy jumped up. "Now we have the whole Clan together!"

"Pack," Zoro corrected.

"It's Clan!" Luffy bit back, glaring at Zoro just as fierce. "Why won't you get it through your thick skull?"

"My thick skull? What about yours?" Zoro asked, pointing at the boy. "You're the one who has a seriously bad case of it!"

"Look, there are more Vampires here, Brook makes 5!" Luffy replied holding up his hand to signal five fingers.

"Is that why he wanted me to come?" Brook asked, looking down at Sanji who only sighed and shrugged his shoulders.

"What the he- - Luffy? !" Zoro growled. "When we started out we had MORE Werewolves so it was a Pack!"

"'Was' is the key word here," Luffy snickered, crossing his arms as if he had won his point.

"The he- - Luffy?" Zoro growled. "You don't make any sense!"

"You don't!" Luffy said back at Zoro, everyone wondering if this was just a playful argument or serious—you could never tell with those two. "I've never heard of Vampires being in a Pack."

And I've never heard of Werewolves being in a Clan!" Zoro bit back.

And so the arguments continued, even as they all headed out towards Water 7. They still couldn't tell if it was serious or not, but they laughed nonetheless. It actually felt like Zoro hadn't even left at all—which was a pretty good feeling to everyone.

So now, as the 9 headed out, they finally felt like a whole Clan, or Pack, whatever they were, group. They just felt whole again and they weren't planning on separating like that for a long, long time.