One Piece: Rise of the Pirate Queen
Last time on One Piece: Rise of the Pirate Queen, the crew landed on Maffino, island of the mafia. While Akio and Ryuudo were being taken care by Granny Ogee and Nicole, the others took a tour with Salvador and Cecily. During their tour, Mika got separated. Now they search for her, but where could she be?
Mika the Street-Cat
The People Not Seen by the City
In Maffino, an island completely covered in concrete and steel structures, it is easy to lose yourself in this city. For those who live on this island, finding their way anywhere is a cake walk. However many a sailor, tourist, and even pirate have gone made trying to return back to their ships and be left behind. The people of this city claim it as 'Maffino has them now' putting on a personification that the city is alive. It may not be far from the truth as this, like any city, is hustling hub of activity. Whether it be from hard-working men and woman or low-life criminals, day or night, this city is active 24/7 three-hundred and sixty-five days a year. And if your new, you best get yourself a guide or even a skilled navigator because once you enter you are just as likely to get lost as you are to die on the same day.
Luckily, this was not the case for the Hurricane crew that had entered the city. With their captain missing, the group separated into two groups; Team A being Cecily and Nore and Team B with Salvador, Drake, and Lena. Both groups had separated going in different directions both guides suggesting a different way to find her. Let's flip a coin to see who to follow? Heads; it's Team A! We find Team A as they continued back on the same path they were on before. Nore was searching high and low for Mika. Cecily however seemed a bit preoccupied.
"…And dear Oda Salvador is such a pervert! I mean, if it's not one girl, it's several others at one time! He once tried to set up five of my friends on the same day! He's so disgusting sometimes."
Nore only nodded, but he was unfortunately listening. The woman went on and on about how Salvador did something that she disliked. She hardly seemed to be looking for Mika, maybe as a way to get at Salvador. Either way, Nore wouldn't have her selfishness deter him from finding the captain. Though it would be difficult, the nature her was sour as was the wind. Hearing anything from the Earth it was easily blocked by the man-made sounds of the city. It was very frustrating. Adding that to the female guide that he was sure was enamored with and was venting her complaints, his patience was being tested. However, despite Cecily rattling on, Nore was ever vigilant for Mika. Only Nore was rather befuddled; he could not find a trace of the young captain. And that was saying something. Nore had looked through the crowd and in every building they passed yet he couldn't find a single hint or sign of Mika. That was unheard of for a girl that could attract attention far too easily. He must be missing something.
"And then there are his excessive parties that seem to make the city even louder. I'm not even sure-"
"Excuse me." Cecily stopped talking and looked over to the man as he finally spoke. The woman blushed as she heard his deep voice that spoke volumes despite being regular. Nore noticed this, but continued on. "Could you tell me what is down this path." Cecily looked around Nore looking to where he was pointing. Her eyes widen when she saw where he was pointing; an alleyway that was filled with trash and quite literally dark.
"Oh…that. That would be the alleyways. This one leads to the slums that lie in between the buildings and streets. No one really goes through there unless it's something shady."
"…No one does?"
"No, it's much like a lawless area. The police and marines tend to stay in the nicer part of the city. Mafias use it to make deals or off somebody. No one really lives there except the slumdogs."
"It's a term for the people that are very poor and can't live well like many in this city. They live in back-alleys, if you call it living. There was supposed to be something done about it, but then Capone came and got everyone in a scare over the mafia. All funds got directed to his 'Best Solution' project, which would take care of the mafia families for good. A whole lot of nonsense if you ask me. After that, the only thing they did was push those poor people out of the way where no one can see them."
"Hmm-mm. That is quite problematic." Nore nodded though while he did agree with the girl's statement he had his mind on something else. He looked down the alley as a thought crossed his mind. Could his captain have made her way to such a place? Cecily quickly picked up on this thought and was surprised.
"You're not thinking she went…No that would ridiculous. No one in their right mind would willingly go down into the back-alleys. Come on, let's try the other side of the street." Cecily then lead Nore away from the dark alley to the other side; however, Nore couldn't help but ponder about the back-alley. He had this nagging feeling that maybe his captain would've gone through such a place, but as Cecily was his guide he had to follow her or risk getting lost. So he set his thoughts aside for later and followed the woman to the other side of the street, hoping they would have some luck.
Meanwhile heading north, was Team A. Lena was shouting out for Mika while Drake looked down alleyways as they passed them with Salvador walking ahead of them. He was starting to get annoyed with Lena's yelling. "Would you please stop yelling? It's useless to even try in a city this big."
Lena stopped her shouts and glared at the pervert. "Excuse me for trying. Mika's out there right now lost and probably confused, what do you want me to do?"
"Easy now, Lena, let's put some faith into our guide. I'm sure he knows what he is doing." Lena turned to Drake as the man walked back up with the group. The young sniper only huffed not as content as her navigator was which she found very odd. She turned to Drake looking at him curiously.
"And why aren't you more worried about this? Akio would probably be freaking out jumping all over the place to find her!"
Salvador turned back towards the pirates and not looking very amused. "Who is this Akio person? What right does he have on my sweet Mika?"
"He's our first-mate, who you probably briefly saw at Granny's house. He is the human." Sal looked over to Drake as he explained. Indeed, Salvador recalled briefly of the two guests healing on his grandmother's couches, one human and one a fishman. He recalled the man more specifically, and didn't seem all that impressed. Drake noticed and added to his explanation. "Oh! And Mika's best friend since childhood." That little bit of information caught him off-guard. He certainly was not pleased with that.
"Pfft-He may have such a close bond, but the red string of fate connects us. That is how we will find my love!"
The group stopped seeing Salvador proclaim his imaginary love. Lena looked in contempt of the man as he seemed to be thinking only of his own desires. Drake only chuckled like he wasn't even taking the man seriously. Drake then continued on walking right past the man in his love pose as did Lena as they continued to search. Looking down another alley, Drake had a little private talk with Lena. "We probably should search for Bege rather than Mika. She can handle herself quite well in a city."
Lena stared at Drake very confused. "Wait? What do you mean?"
"I know you know that Mika is far from defenseless, but she is even farther from being lost."
"I still don't get it?"
"Mika is quite adept for running around a city, big as it may be."
"What are you talking about?" Lena and Drake turned as Salvador caught back up with them. It would seem he at least didn't hear the first part of their conversation, which was good for them as they wouldn't want to complicate things. Nonetheless, Drake continued to explain.
"You see, Mika and Akio lived near a city…"
While Drake and the others had stopped for his explanation, somewhere within the alleyways a terror had reawakened. From where we last left her, Mika was standing over the table with a vicious and victorious smirk. On the other side of the table, the once confident scammer was now against the wall in awestruck. The girl then stood back up as she held a wad of cash in her hand. She then proceeded to count while also talking to the man himself. "Thanks for playing with me, and thanks for going easy too! I'm a bit out of practiced, that was a good warm up."
"Bye!" Pocketing the money, Mika gave a wave to the man and then walked off. The man then slid to the ground in despair.
"A-All my things… How did she take them all?!"
Mika did not hear the man cry in agony as she turned out of the alley. "Hey! Everyone I got some mon-Eh? Where everyone go?" Believing that her friends were nearby, Mika wanted to share her victory. Unfortunately, she didn't turn out at the main street and instead at the back streets. Unlike the main street – clean and littered with hundreds of people, the back streets were quite the opposite. The street was filthy, trash everywhere, and there were few people. Many of them seem to be doing shady business while others were just trying to get any business whatsoever. There were even kids playing around in torn and filthy clothes.
Of course, she was used to it. "Reminds me of Grey Terminal…" Despite what she said, Mika still smiled. It was familiar territory that called for an old persona. With a smirk on her face, Mika searched the back street for a something and found that something. She quickly ran over to crudely made stand selling clothing – surprisingly nice clothing – where poor looking woman with long, slight ruffled hair managed. She was trying to calm down her little boy down when Mika arrived, but she was too excited to be considerate at the moment. "Hey lady, who much for this sash and bandana?" The woman looked away from her child – she looked rather tried – and was surprised to see the upbeat girl wanting to buy two of her items. Maybe she had misheard?
"E-E-Excuse me, you-?"
"Never mind, you can just have all of this!" Being too excited to actually care, Mika actually gave the woman all the money she had gotten from her last victim. The woman, even her son, gasped as they saw more money than either of them had seen in their lives. The woman looked back at the girl as she took one of her black bandanas and a long yellow sash. She watch her wrap the sash around her waist – letting the extra fall behind her – and then wrapped the bandana on her head fashioning it in way that made look like she had cat ears. The woman, having finally gotten out of her amazed stupor, spoke to the girl in earnest.
"I-I-I can't accept all this. You have enough here to buy nicer-"
"Hey! Do you have a marker or some black paint I can use?" The woman was interrupted as the girl seemed not to be bothered by the small fact. With Mika's question, the woman was baffled. The child however was curious and walked up to the girl.
"I have charcoal?" said the boy as he held up a piece of black coal.
Mika smiled. "Ooh! Perfect! Mind if I borrow it, kid." The boy nodded absentmindedly and handed over the charcoal. With charcoal in hand, Mika looked around searching for something. Eventually she did, it was a puddle. She then ran over to it leaving behind the kid and his mother.
"Hey, hey! What's yous got there?" The boy turned around and gasped as some of the meaner looking men walked towards them. All of them were smirking greedily eyeing the woman specifically. "Some money, eh? Why not share with the rest 'em with us?" All the men chuckled as the continued to step closer to the woman and her stand. The woman looked quite frightened as she flinched back in fear.
"Leave mommy alone!" The men stopped and the woman looked up as the little boy stepped right in front of the men. The group of men laughed at the boy and then continued to walk towards the woman. They pushed the boy out of the way and walked up to stand. The woman was shaking in fear as the men tried to reach out for her.
Pow! All the men were sent flying back as Mika through a single punch. "Hey! Leave them alone, nya!" The woman and boy were surprised as they looked at Mika again. With the bandana uniquely fashioned, the sash flowing behind her, and now the three charcoal lines on each cheek Mika looked like a cat. She even added the 'nya' to the end of her sentence! While the woman and boy were amazed by the girl, the adult men were getting back up and looking pretty angry.
"Hey! What was that for, Girlie?!"
"And what's with the stupid get-up and makeup?"
Mika ignored their comments and shouted at them confidently. "This is my territory now! And if you harm a single person here, I'm gonna beat you up, nya!" The woman and boy were surprised to hear the girl defend them and even claim this area as her territory. Who was this girl? The men just stared at the girl dumbly and then began to laugh.
"Hahaha! Is that girl serious?"
"If she weren't so pretty, I'd think she was!"
"Listen here, Girlie, the mafias rule Maffino, but the back streets belong to the slumdogs like us. And were not gonna bend over for some dressed-up girlie."
Mika just smirked hearing their reply. "Nya~!" Without warning, Mika ran straight for the group of laughing men. They were so distracted that they didn't notice the girl was already in front of them. All the men gasped, the girl just smiled. In no time flat, Mika beat every last guy in less than five seconds; one second each. All those watching on were amazed by the girl's strength, especially the young boy and his mother. "That was easy." Mika smirked as she clapped her hands clean from fighting. She then turned around looking at the kid with a friendly smile. "Got any chalk, nya?"
"Uh…yeah?" Again, the child gave the girl a piece of chalk. Mika then took the chalk and walked over to a nearby wall. She then started drawing something on it. The people stood around the girl as they wondered what she was doing. When she finished there was a chalk-line Jolly Roger that looked much like a cat though a very cute one.
"There…done!" Satisfied with her work, Mika handed back the charcoal to the boy and began walking to her next destination; where ever.
Before she was out of sight, the woman called out to the girl. "Wait!" Mika stopped and turned around back to the woman and her child. The woman walked up to the girl and held out the money she had received from her earlier. "Thank you for taking care of those men, but I can't accept all this-"
"It's okay!" The woman was interrupted as Mika gave the money back to the woman with a smile. The woman blinked in surprise. "Besides, I've been reimbursed, nya!" The woman looked confused, but then her eyes widen as Mika held a few bags that seem to jingle with money. Mika then began to run away as her sense of adventure kicked in. The group a people and family watched the girl run off, all of them amazed by the girl.
"Wait, who are you, lady?!" Mika stopped running having heard the little boy. She turned around with a smile as replied back.
"Just call me Mika the Street-Cat, nya!"
Meanwhile back with Team B, Drake seemed to have finished his explanation that seemed to have left the young sniper in awestruck. Salvador only looked impressed. "Wait! Wait! Wait! You're telling me Mika, our airhead captain, made a street gang?!"
Drake nodded. "Well, a kid's street gang, but yeah. They sure gave Goa a scare every time Mika and Akio came back."
"What amazing leader skills. Mika could become a mafia head rather than a pirate." Salvador spoke sounding very impressed. Drake chuckled confusing both Lena and Salvador.
"She didn't run it per say, it was more like she got a bunch of kids, even those in nobility, to join in her fun. If anyone was in charge, it was Akio and another girl whose name escapes me, Yuri-Kin or something. Anyway, during that time she became very well-known as a 'street-cat'."
"Street-cat?" Both Salvador and Lena repeated the same word questionably.
"They did call her a street-rat, but then she beat anyone who said that and got the term 'street-cat' going around after making her appear like a cat thus, Mika the Street-Cat. The gang came later on."
"How do you know this?" asked Salvador finding all this information on 'his' Mika a bit suspicious. Drake simply shrugged.
"As their babysitter, I had to at least keep an eye on them."
"So what you're saying is that we don't have anything to worry about with Mika." Lena summarized what she had heard and feeling somewhat relieved. However Drake turned to the girl looking far from relaxed as he was some minutes ago. Both Lena and Salvador were stunned.
"Worried about Mika? No. I'm worried what she's gonna do to the city!"
TO BE CONTINUED…NYA!
Author's note: Yo! Well, a lot of you have been shouting at me to talk more about the nine years of Akio and Mika's life. Well, here's part one, I guess. Anyway, I'm tired, may be taking a break next month. We'll see. Until next time, Ja Ne!