Oda, I ask only one thing of you. If you choose to make a romance of any sort (which I doubt, but blind hopes never hurt...some people) let it be these two. Kthanx, bye.

One Piece belongs to Oda, not me. Let's pray it stays that way.

By this point in his acquaintanceship of a one Nico Robin, Franky had come to terms with the fact that the woman was fully capable of taking care of herself. Sure, sometimes, she needed a good kick to the metaphorical butt to get her back on her feet again. Nevertheless, truth of the matter was, she was an independent and powerful woman.

He will never, ever doubt that. Not after learning firsthand what those Devil Fruit abilities could and would do. The memories still reduce him to fetal position every now and again.

So, it came as quite the startling happening when he came upon Robin, tied up by what appeared to be a seemingly normal string of rope. Sure, it was pretty thick, but someone as strong as he or his other crewmates could scoff at it and find a way out soon enough. Robin most certainly should have been able to. Instead, she simply lay there, prone, yet looking as graceful and composed as she always did. Somehow, she made being hog-tied look elegant.

Franky would contemplate how that was even remotely possible later. For now, he had questions that needed to be answered.

Crouching down, one arm draped across one knee, Franky takes to giving the ropes a once over before inquiring of the woman,

"Uh…no offense or anything, but why are you still stuck?"

Robin doesn't bat an eyelash, simply turning her blue eyes up at him before responding with a cool,

"It seems these ropes were dipped in sea-stone. I can't get out."

The cyborg squints down at the ropes, a tad dubious about this whole situation by now. Reaching up, he takes to rubbing at the back of his neck.

"They can do that?"

All that is offered is a simple shrug in turn. Visage placid, as it almost always is, Robin takes to glancing down at her bindings and then up at Franky. Taking the hint, Franky soon enough undoes her restraints (He wasn't allowed to use fire, unfortunately. Robin could be such a party-pooper sometimes…) and has her on her feet. By now, raring to go and get back to the ship, Franky turns and begins marching off in the direction of the boat. Robin, on the contrary, does not, simply vying for remaining where she is. Having not heard the telltale sounds of footfalls close behind, the pirate turns to see that the archeologist has not even bothered to take a step forward. He doesn't even have time to open his mouth to question this fact before Robin beats him to the punch. Arms folded loosely under her bosom, she offers,

"I'm afraid it seems the ropes have left me weak."

No shaking limbs or tired eyes to be sighted. Fortunately for Franky, he has the good foresight not to call this contradiction to light. Shrugging, the shipwright takes a step in the woman's direction.

"Okay so-"

"Carry me."

Had this been anyone else demanding that, Franky would have argued. But this was Robin. He was going to carry her back to the ship, or die trying. Releasing a barely audible sigh, the cyborg advances forward before scooping the smaller woman into his arms.

The trip would be so much easier had Robin not decided to wrap her arms around his neck while gazing through her lashes at him and murmuring,

"Thank you, Franky. I'm so glad you were able to carry me back. I hope I'm not a burden."

"Nah, you're super light!"

"Why thank you."

The trip continued without much trouble, save for the cook trying to kick Franky upon his return for not "carrying Robin-chwan like a princess". Franky didn't know any princesses that snapped peoples' spines in half, but decides it to be for the best not to share his opinions.

Robin decides it best not to share the fact that she had been lying. Though she very well knew Franky was aware of this fact.

But, well, he had still carried her anyways. And that certainly said something in itself.