Okey, it's all here and I'm DONE. Now to work on the other set...


Title: To the End of the Circle

Theme: #11- Water

Claim: Robin

Words: 1451

Rating: K+

Warning: Off-screen action (because frankly, I'm incredibly lazy).
Part 5 of Robin and Bon Clay's adventure! And I'm done!


The sun was especially harsh today, burning Robin's skin and turning the lukewarm sea into a blinding mirror. She sat beneath a tattered sail, sweating and trying not to slip into unconsciousness.

That damn okama. That damn okama. She should have figured that he wouldn't listen to her and hold fast to his obscure okama philosophy. Even after throwing her unceremoniously on a lifeboat to face Hina's wrath alone (Mr. 3 hadn't even bothered crawling out of his cell, the coward), Robin refused to loosen her multi-armed grip on the side of the ship. And yet, even though Robin had made it clear she wasn't about to run off alone, Bentham remained steadfast and kicked her arms, launching the lifeboat away in the midst of a violent rainstorm.

Robin shifted uncomfortably, her throat burning. The sail did little to protect her from the sun (or catch what little wind there was). The lifeboat was ill-equipped, with only two cans of freshwater, a blunt hook, half a life-jacket, and three oars aboard. It was much smaller than the first lifeboat she and Bentham had used in their first escape, too.

Minutes passed. Or maybe it was hours. It was hard to tell. Robin was in the middle of nowhere. There was no doubt that Bentham had been recaptured yet again. Black Cage Hina was already probably searching for her. The lifeboat had probably drifted quite a distance, considering the violence of the storm that had just vanished the moment daylight broke.

Even so, Robin felt as if she were waiting on death row, surrounded by nothing but the ocean with nothing to keep her alive for more than a day.

Water, water, everywhere.

She was drowning, clawing at the bubbles, sinking down below.

Someone was laughing.

Were they laughing at her?

Everywhere, tearing at her lungs and couldn't breathe and-

Water-

Robin jerked upright. It was raining again, but it wasn't like the storm from last night. She had fallen asleep with the cloth plastered against her nose. Robin mentally kicked herself; her carelessness could have caused her to die in her sleep. Several arms tore the damp sail away, allowing the drizzle to hit her parched skin.

Robin stared at her feet. Her situation was bleak. She was either going to perish by the hands of the ocean, or be discovered by Marines. Or pirates. Or anyone else. But it didn't really matter who found her. Either way, she was going to die.

"Shishishi!"

Her ears perked up, carefully listening over the pattering of the light rain. That was laughter. Was she finally going crazy?

No. More arms grabbed the oars and began rowing towards the indistinct shape of a ship hardly far from her location. Upon closer inspection, Robin realized it wasn't far at all- it was just a really small ship.

With a ram figurehead.

The arms stopped rowing and Robin stared at it. Of all the ships she could have encountered on the endless waters, it had to be that ship. Unconsciously, she touched the barely-healed wound on her chest.

"Shishishi!"

Her lifeboat bumped against the hull of the Going Merry. Silently, Robin summoned what little energy she had left and climbed aboard by a ladder of legs. Once her feet touched solid wood, her head began to spin and she collapsed.

-X-

"Guys, stop throwing that!" Nami held up her newspaper, deflecting a ball of rolled-up socks. It bounced off and landed on the table, inches away from Zoro's face. He snorted in his sleep and swatted the sockball away, wrinkling his nose.

"The rain isn't even that bad. Let's go outside to play!" Luffy said, snatching up the sockball.

"Throw it back, Luffy!" Chopper called from the opposite side of the kitchen, jumping up and down. He suddenly stopped bouncing and paused, ears twitching. "Did you hear something?"

"It's just the rain and wind." Sanji said carelessly as he tossed spices into a large pot.

"No, it wasn't that." Chopper went over to the door and pressed his ear against the wood. "I can hear something else."

"Ooooh. Maybe it's a GHOST!" Usopp waved his hands in Chopper's face, making the young reindeer squeak and pull his hat over his eyes. Usopp's eyes widened. "What if it is a ghost? Aaaugh!"

"Guys!" Nami slammed the newspaper on the table, waking Zoro. "Okay, Chopper, if you really hear something, I'll go check."

"No! They're going to suck your soul out! Nooo!" Usopp wailed, clutching his chest.

"Gah, what are you screaming about now?" Zoro groaned, yawning. "So what is it, Nami? Nothing?"

Nami didn't respond. She was staring out the porthole.

"Nami?" Zoro stood up. Luffy dropped his sockball and looked over, smile gone.

"Guys, someone's out there." Nami slowly said, backing away. "I think they're dead."

-X-

Robin woke up, covered in a clean sheet and her head slightly fuzzy. There was a bright light above her and she winced slightly.

"Guys! She's awake!" a high-pitched voice called out beside her. Robin tried to move, but found her bruised arms hurt like a bitch.

"Alright, talk!" a girl stomped over to the bedside and glared in Robin's face. "What are you doing here, and how did you find us?"

"I thought you were dead." Monkey D. Luffy entered the room, his face blank.

"I thought so too." Robin weakly laughed.

"Answer my question!" the redhead yelled. "Baroque Works!"

"Oh? You're still upset about that?" Robin asked, racking through her memories for the Strawhat crewmembers' names.

"You were severely dehydrated and malnourished. When was the last time you ate?" the reindeer asked. For some reason, Robin wasn't so surprised that it could talk.

"A while ago…" Robin trailed off. She hadn't touched the food that the Marines had supplied during their time in captivity, and sweating in the sun for hours hadn't done her any good either. The reindeer reached over for a glass of water, but the redhead- Nami, Robin remembered- stopped him.

"Not until she answers me."

"At least let her drink and eat a little!" the reindeer protested.

"Chopper." Nami looked at him. "You don't know what she did. She tried to help kill Vivi. She's our enemy."

"No. I don't think she is." Luffy spoke up. The other three Strawhats had crowded in the infirmary. Robin counted each of them off mentally. Zoro. Usopp. Sanji. Only Sanji didn't wear an expression of suspicion. For the most part, he looked positively ecstatic.

"What?" Nami whipped around.

"She's not a bad guy. Really!" Luffy smiled. "I think we can trust her."

"ARE YOU CRAZY?" Nami began shaking him. "She was CROCODILE'S partner!"

"Yeah, so? You were Arlong's navigator, right? And you're not evil."

Zoro snorted, but was silenced by Nami's glare.

"So can she stay?" Sanji asked hopefully.

"SANJI-KUN!"

"Guys, enemy watching us…" Usopp said nervously, edging towards the door.

"She's not evil!"

"She's our enemy, Luffy." Zoro said sternly. "Once we reach the next island, we're dropping her off."

"Rather than turning me in? I'm touched." Robin said.

"We're wanted too." Zoro scowled.

"Wait a minute…" Luffy began counting something off on his fingers. He ran to the side of the bed and shook it, looking desperately at Robin. "Bon-chan! Do you know what happened to Bon-chan? Did he get away? Is he okay?"

"He…" Robin closed her eyes and smiled. "I don't know. We were separated not too long ago."

"You were with him!" Luffy's eyebrows rose.

"Yes." Lights danced behind her eyelids. It almost looked like they were spinning. Spinning with their arms above their heads and one leg suspended.

"Okay, you can stay with us."

"LUFFY!" Nami, Zoro, and Usopp yelled.

"A friend of Bon-chan is a friend of ours. Besides, like I said, she's a nice lady!" Luffy insisted.

"If she tries anything…" Nami muttered as she, Usopp, and Zoro left, each evidently disgruntled. Sanji twirled around for a few minutes before going off to find Nami. Luffy sat down beside Robin.

"Bon-chan got caught, huh?" Luffy asked, picking his nose. Chopper was examining one of Robin's bruised arms for any fractures or other internal wounds.

"He was captured after he saved me." Robin nodded.

"So why'd he save you?"

Robin blinked in mild surprise at his straightforward question.

"He sacrificed himself for us, and then for you." Luffy said. He didn't seem upset, just curious. Robin stared up at the ceiling, thinking back to the times Bentham had tried to make her run away for her own safety at his own expense. She was done running. She wasn't going to play coward anymore and hide behind others, never fighting for herself. No more of that.

"That's the Okama Way… Captain-san."


Wait! Don't go yet! There's still the other set- Nami+Sanji+Robin, which I will be posting shortly.
So yeah... heed my advertisement and check that one out. Ooooh.
Reviews will be greatly appreciated.