Title: Not Entirely What It Looks Like
Theme: #15 Dial
Claim: Zoro x Nami
Rating: I'm just gonna give a T as overkill.
Warnings: Slightly creepy/disturbing behavior? Also some very mild swearing.
Disclaimer(s): Eiichiro Oda is a very lucky and brilliantly creative man, and he wrote these characters first. I just enjoy making them do odd things for my own amusement.
Zoro found the dial sitting on the edge of the sink in the bathroom. He figured Usopp had forgotten it there, but the sniper told him all his own dials were accounted for.
"What kind is this one anyway?" Zoro wondered.
Usopp scrutinized the shell for a moment. "That's a flavor dial," he finally concluded.
Zoro knew he should just put it back; curiosity killed the cat after all! He couldn't help but wonder what scent someone had taken the trouble to preserve. Knowing how Usopp had used his, he gave the apex of the shell a tiny cautious tap. The opening released the barest hint of something both fruity and floral.
He hadn't gotten a good enough whiff to really identify it, but that smell was awfully familiar! Not wanting to be caught huffing a seashell, Zoro hurriedly gave the dial a slightly firmer tap and took a quick, deep breath, eyes closed so he could focus on the task more clearly.
The scent was warm and pungent with a hint of citrus. His eyes snapped back open. He knew why the smell was so familiar now; it was Nami's perfume!
Something was a little off about it, though. The smell wasn't exactly how he remembered it, and he just couldn't figure it out. Zoro hated leaving problems unsolved, but this problem might get him killed because he could only think of one way determine the difference; he needed a sniff from the source for comparison.
Obviously, he couldn't just walk up to the navigator and say, "Hey, Nami, mind if I smell you?" That was asking for serious physical injury and probably a hefty fee.
There was really no way to do it casually, either. Sure, it was possible to sit next to her at dinner or something, but unless she'd just reapplied for some reason, he'd have to seriously invade her personal space, and he was willing to bet either she or someone else would notice.
Zoro had never been any good at bluffing, but he was seriously considering trying to make up some excuse for asking Nami about her perfume when he finally saw an opportunity. Nami had nodded off while tanning, lying face down in her lounge chair, and for once, no one else was on deck.
Zoro crept slowly toward her across the deck. He froze and held his breath as she suddenly lifted her head, but it was only to turn her face to the other side. Now she was facing away from him.
He found himself holding his breath again as he stood over her. He leaned down, bringing his face as close to the nape of her neck as he dared, and breathed deeply.
"Give me one good reason I shouldn't call you a creepy pervert and kick you somewhere sensitive."
Zoro choked and pulled back so fast that he threw off his balance and landed hard on his back, knocking the wind out of himself. He lay there, gasping like a fish out of water as Nami stood to glare down at him ominously.
When he was finally able to take in a full breath, he wheezed, "I know this looks bad."
"No, really?" Nami's voice was oozing sarcasm.
"I just needed to smell your perfume, honest!"
"Seriously?" Nami quirked one eyebrow. "That's the best excuse you can come up with?"
"It's the truth! I found this dial," he explained, retrieving the shell from his haramaki and holding it out in one hand, "and I recognized the smell, but it was different." Now that he said it out loud, it did sound horribly lame!
"You decided to keep it?" Nami was looking decidedly disturbed again. "I guess that's vaguely flattering in a stalker kind of way..."
"What?" Zoro's eyes widened. "No! At first I thought it might be Usopp's, but he said it wasn't! After I smelled it, I got caught up in trying to figure out why it didn't smell right, and I guess I just sort of forgot I was carrying it around." Now he sounded like a stalker and an idiot! He definitely should have just put it back.
"Calm down!" Nami rolled her eyes. "I'm going to let you off the hook on this for two reasons; firstly, this isn't like your normal behavior at all, so it probably won't happen again, and secondly, I'm the one who left that dial in the bathroom, and I should have expected it would end badly."
Zoro's jaw dropped. "You knew this dial was yours the whole time, and you let me keep babbling and making it worse?"
"Well, yeah." Nami smirked and snatched the flavor dial from Zoro's numb fingers. "Your appalled face is hilarious! This shocked one's not bad, either."
"Why the hell did you leave it there in the first place?"
"My surveying room is right below the bathroom; I was hoping you guys would take a hint and freshen the air a little before leaving because some of you seriously reek!" Nami made a suitably disgusted face. "I honestly don't know what Franky was thinking when he planned that part of the layout."
"Whatever," Zoro grumbled, turning to leave.
"Did you figure it out?" Nami's unexpected question stopped him in his tracks. "What the difference was?"
"You're a horrible liar, and I'm seriously reconsidering charging you," she threatened.
"It was missing your smell," Zoro grudgingly admitted. "The dial was just straight perfume, and usually, I can also smell you. Happy now?"
"Are you implying that I stink?" Nami asked with a frown.
"No." Zoro shrugged. "You just smell like you; it's like the ocean breeze, your mikan trees, ink, parchment, and, well, you. You smell fine with or without the perfume."
"Really?" Nami pondered this for a moment. "Maybe I'll tone it down on the perfume for a while; it is expensive after all."
"You sure you don't want to take this with you?" Nami teased, waving the dial at Zoro. "You might miss the smell. I'm sure we could agree on a reasonable fee."
"Ha ha." Only Luffy or Chopper could have missed the sarcasm. "Thanks, but no thanks." She'd probably never let him live this down, but if she thought she could get him to pay for that dial, she'd be waiting a long time. The perfume held no attraction by itself-not that he'd ever admit it.