Disclaimer: we don't own Once Piece, Oda does. We do however own the plot of this story
"Luffy! Wake up!" a pink haired girl announced. I was used to this, to an extent. Bonney, the girl calling my name, would wake me up at the crack of dawn, and force me out of bed. It would be strange for this not to happen every morning. I mumbled 'five more minutes,' but I knew she wouldn't take no for an answer. I would be lucky to get five more seconds. Not really surprisingly, she tore the blankets off me. I yawned and rubbed my eyes. Then I took a good look at the intruder. She had long, flowing hot pink hair, red lipstick, purple eyes, and a golden piercing below her right eye. She was wearing her own clothing, but had the rebel insignia on the back of her brown jacket. Her clothing consisted of extremely short shorts, a revealing top and her brown jacket. How she was able to run in her boots with heels during battle was beyond me. Bonney and I had been friends for as long as I can remember. We both have a monstrous appetite, we both love to fight, and we basically have a lot in common.
I'm rather aloof, despite my heritage and my position. I'm pretty much second-in-command of the rebel army, my father being the leader. He is a great leader, he's led us through many battles, and if there's one thing I've inherited from him, it's perseverance; the stubbornness of not giving up. I loved him a lot and I respected him, much like many others. Bonney once mentioned that even though he's never said it, he was proud of me.
The enemy we were against was the Arabasta government. I'm not sure why we are still fighting, and but we just are. The rebel army is not the first one to rebel. There have been others, but they've lost to the corrupt government. We have held our own in this war for a very long time, even before I was born, and I am 17 years old. We've lost many, but we've gained victories and new allies in return. The government has sent out troops to kill so many innocent lives. One of those lives belonging to my mother. I don't remember her, but I have seen many pictures of her. She was a beautiful woman with long, black, unkempt hair and owned a wide smile that I inherited. Her life was claimed when I was about three. One of our colonies had been ambushed, her being in it. I don't fight for revenge, I'm sure she doesn't regret dying, because she protected me in the process; I fight for the same thing everyone else in the rebel army fights for, freedom.
Getting back to my current situation, I didn't do anything as she dragged me to the bathroom and ordered me to get ready in five minutes. I knew if I didn't do as she said, very bad things will happen. I ran one of my hands through my dark hair, buttoned up my vest, and wore my cloak with the rebel crest upon the left shoulder. I pulled my hood down and took a good look at myself. Nothing out of the ordinary. I had my parents' ebony hair, my father's eyes, a childish frame, and a small scar underneath my left eye. Despite my facial features, I was quite muscular. Looks can be deceiving, I guess. My ears picked up a knock on the door; obviously it was Bonney telling me to hurry up.
As a bonus, I put on my treasured hat. A gift from an old friend, Shanks was his name. From what I hear, he's a part of the Whitebeard tribe. I don't know much about it, but I'm sure he's happy there. He was always a carefree man, and I do miss him. Hearing another knock, I knew I had to either get out, or my pink haired friend would break the door down. That would make about nine this week. I declared, "I'm coming!" so she wouldn't knock anymore; it was giving me a headache. I reopened the door, the moment I did, I was dragged again. Bonney was not the most patient person in the world. As we passed by, you would think people would give us odd looks, but no one did. They were all quite used to this, save for the new recruits we got every now and them. There were none, so I didn't have to deal with the wide eyes everyone gave us, not that I minded. I knew I was a bit odd, most of my friends call that stupidity, save for Bonney. Sure she thinks I can be reckless and an idiot at times, but she knew I wasn't dumb; I just saw the world a different way, and I didn't care for some things that were considered important by others.
We reached the meeting room, which was nearly empty. At first you would think we missed the meeting, but that is incorrect. Bonney gets me up at a ridiculous time in order to be here first so I wouldn't look bad. Sometimes we arrived before my father, it was almost laughable. Almost. Today was not one of those days, as my father was sitting in his fancy chair at the head of a room. It was easy to tell that the chair he was sitting on belonged to the leader/him. It stood out more than the other chairs, and it was at the head of the meeting table and room, almost like a throne. I didn't dare mention this to him, because we are going against a government that's basically a dictatorship, and he didn't want to be related with those monsters that call themselves 'justice.' Everyone was repulsed that the government thinks what they're doing is right, despite the lives their movement has taken. Then again, the way I see it, we think what we are doing is right, just the same as them. There is no right and wrong, good and bad, in war. There are only sides.
I said good morning and he nodded. Even so early in the morning, he's up to his neck in work. It bothers me how much responsibility and stress he has on his shoulders. Sometimes I think he's overworking himself. He denies it, of course, but this quest for freedom has already begun to take his life. Late at night, I see him coughing harshly, almost losing the ability to breathe. I know that he is unwell, but I dare not mention this to my friends, our comrades, not even Bonney. Everyone would lose hope without their leader; even knowing that he is going to die would have them fall into despair. I trust in him, I know he can make it. He's all the family I have, so he can't leave me, right? I wonder if anyone else has noticed that he's getting paler, or that he doesn't eat as much, or that he has dark circles under his eyes, even more than usual, from lack of sleep. He's going through so much pain, just to act normal, so that we don't lose hope. That's why I love him so much; he puts other's happiness before his own. I know that if I were in his shoes, I would do the exact same thing. But his actions worry me. The choices he make are reckless, just like me, but respectable, and they always aid us, however, I cannot see how pretending he isn't dying is helping us, namely me.
We had a good 2 hours before the meeting actually began, so I tried to think of a way to pass the time. I sat at my place, the chair on my father's right side, and began tapping my fingers. Bonney took her seat, third from the end on the opposite side of the table. I couldn't even talk to her, because we were so far apart. There are about eleven chairs in all, excluding me and dad. So that would be a total of thirteen. The eleven other chairs belong to each unit leader. They were all nice and all of them were my close friends, even though some refused to admit it. I took a look around the room I was so accustomed to. Nothing gained my interest. I started to draw shapes on the table, they weren't anything in particular, but it put my boredom at ease.
I didn't know what the meeting was about. It varied. Sometimes it was about our recent activity, wins or losses, others it was plans of raids and such. Although I may not be the best thinker, I am a pretty good fighter, if I do say so myself. Not one person, other than my father (and Bonney on occasion) is able to beat me. I did not get to be second-in-command just because I'm the son of the leader, no; I earned my position through hard work. People don't respect me as much as they respect dad, mostly due to my goofiness, but I'm recognized as an important person nonetheless. I heard the door open. Bit by bit, the commanders of each unit began to arrive. Soon enough, all the seats were filled. Father cleared his throat and began to speak, "Let's get this meeting started, shall we?"
War. This damned civil war had been going on for god knows how much time, and lives were just being continuously taken by those rebel murderers. I swear I had once been told once by the admirals of the government that even my father had fought in this forsaken war. In fact, it had been going for so long that no one really knew why the war had been started in the first place and what the aims of our side, or of the rebels had been. We just knew that they were murdering our comrades in cold blood. They had been murdering the soldiers that had bravely fought for their country, for their family, for their friends, for survival and for a day's salary that would allow them to feed their starving families. They had been murdering cruelly the people that had fought for honest reasons, the people that had once been their brothers and sisters, their friends and even their family. They had been doing this for what probably had been decades, I had never really bothered in actually learning for how long this war had been going on, I just know that it already was there even before I was born, and I am twenty years old now.
So who am I? I am Portgas D. Ace, formerly known as Gol D. Ace. I am the son of an honest and good woman and of a cruel and heartless murderer. I am the son of the murderer that took so many innocent lives and that decided to give me life. I am the son of a man that was executed by the government due to his crimes after a fair trial. I am the son of the man that is hated by all people due to all of his atrocious crimes against the people of the world and of the proud nation that is Arabasta. You can probably understand why I chose not to carry and use my father's surname. I hate the man with all my heart and soul. I don't think that I could hate any other human being more than him, no one.
My mother, Portgas D. Rouge, died giving birth, after having to struggle due to her relations that she had with my bastard of a father. She died after my birth, giving every single drop of her life to allow me to survive despite my blood and who it came from. Even though I was the son of a criminal and should not exist because of that. Yes, she did this and I cannot say that I blame her for my existence. I blame my father for it. I blame my father for forcing her to escape the government and from indirectly causing her death. Yes, I blame him for it. I was taken in by Monkey D. Garp, the famous 'hero' of the army, the man that captured my father and managed to put him through a trial. He, ignoring who my father was, sent me to a government academy and educated me.
He showed me what this country was like and how much it had suffered because of the war that had been going on at that time. He had also trained me in fighting, resistance and strength quite brutally by leaving me randomly at dangerous places. The great majority of the population had become poor and was starving due to the damages caused by the almost constant battling, however and even though all the damages of the war the population was generally in favour of one side or the other. This was what I had been taught there, along with more history and other important skills that a boy of my age should have. I had always been good at fighting, and at school I had been the strongest person around. There had never been anyone that had defeated me; no one had ever managed to do that. Eventually I had decided to join the army to fight for the country and to stop the people that were like my father. Even my childhood friend, Vivi, had done the same thing as me.
We had both gained fame quite quickly for how we fought, and Vivi had been quickly ascended to a general of the army. She was a very talented person and she was admired by many soldiers, and she of course had quite a bunch of suitors, although she had declined all of them. Vivi was the daughter of the king of Arabasta. Well, the king of the now divided country that used to be the proud nation of Arabasta. She had a deep hate for the rebels that surpassed the hate that most people in our side had. Her mother had been ruthlessly murdered by some person that had been on their side when she was a kid, and this had been the event that had fuelled this hate and also motivation to win the war and stop it like that. I had also been ascended several times, but I had the feeling that I would never reach the rank of general, at least in a very long time. I preferred it like that though, I enjoyed the thrill of having to fight at the battles, and I wouldn't like sitting down at a table planning strategy and rarely going out to fight. Yes, I definitely...
"Ace?" I heard a voice suddenly say, distracting me from all of my thoughts.
I almost jumped when I heard the voice. It had taken me completely by surprise. I suddenly became aware of my surroundings again. I was at the main base and I had been walking for quite a lot now. Where had I been walking to before I had become completely unaware of where I was? I didn't have a single idea. I was carrying the many weapons that we had been given, and my desert coloured uniform was worn out on several places. I was quite dirty myself, and several parts of my clothes were stained with the crimson liquid that I had become so used to over the years during which I had been fighting. My black hair had quite an amount of sand on it, and the rest of me was quite dirty with dirt and other stuff. I made a mental note to take a bath or a shower as soon as I had the time to take one.
"Ace?" I heard the female voice ask again. This time I did turn around to greet whoever I had been rudely ignoring before.
"I'm sorry, I was thinking quite deeply and I didn't notice you Vivi" I said as I greeted my childhood best friend.
She laughed. "Oh, don't worry. I could guess as much" She said with a friendly tone of voice. "So how was it during this last mission Ace?" She then asked me.
"It was okay, we crushed those rebels today and we got back what we lost last time" I said with a tired but proud tone of voice. Yes, today we had managed to get a massive victory.
"I'm glad, thanks to you we have managed to advance so much. I don't know what we would do without such a brave commander like you" Vivi then said. This time I didn't answer, and instead I limited myself to smile at her in quite a tired way.
"Well Ace, I will leave you now. I have to talk to the other generals now to discuss our next steps. I will tell you what we decide once our reunion is finished, but something tells me that this is going to be quite long" Vivi then said. "By the way, your superior, Blackbeard, will probably want to see you soon" Vivi said before turning around. "I'll see you soon Ace!" She said with a happy tone of voice just before she walked away.
"Good luck at that meeting!" I quickly told her before I started walking again, this time towards my room. I wanted to get clean as soon as possible. All of the dirt and sand that I had on me was starting to get me nervous. I then wondered what my superior, Blackbeard, would want to tell me now. "It will probably be about next mission" I thought as I continued walking through the seemingly eternal corridors.