Inspiration is a funny thing, and sometimes it takes the form of an eight foot tall living skeleton who was rude and perverted and made bad jokes. But when Brook sat at the piano or pulled out his violin every member of the Straw Hat Pirates would pause as the beautiful music tugged at something deep inside them, something that most of them didn't realize was there.

Brook sipped his tea at the dinner table, quietly observing his new family as he hummed the main melody to the song he had yet to compose. Normally, of course, the living skeleton threw himself into the thick of the Straw Hat's antics, but tonight he was content to watch the strange group of pirates. Brook was basing his new masterpiece around the interaction of his new crew and he wanted it to be perfect.

It may seem strange to a non-musician, but Brook always did his best seeing with his ears (although he had neither ears nor eyes to see with!). The harmonies that the Straw Hat Pirates (his new crew!) wove were so complex and overlapping that it would entrance the old man. He supposed, in time, that he may get used to this strange phenomenon, but deep in his nonexistent heart Brook hoped that it never happened. It was just too much of a pleasure to listen to.

The song that Brook composed (he was now keeping tempo with his free hand, to go along with his humming) was a happy one. All of the separate pieces supported one another, and there was little dissonance to be found. The sharpshooter and the shipwright were discussing upgrades of some sort, while the captain and the doctor provided a unique countermelody in the form of wacky and implausible ideas as well as encouraging them to make something 'super cool'. The cook and swordsman were threatening to break out into a fight, possibly overwhelming the main melody. They were quickly stopped by the navigator, all the while being under the ever present watch of the archeologist.

They inspired each other, like every good family should. Brook did not remember when he first came to that conclusion, but once he did it became even more obvious in his eyes (although he had none!). Even the antagonistic-like rivalry between Sanji and Zoro only served to make the both of them stronger. On this magnificent ship no dream was insignificant, everyone had a place, and there was no lack of encouragement. The nine separate, yet equally important, pieces somehow managed to mix together to make an even better whole. There were a million songs that could be written in an attempt to represent what this tiny crew had, but they would all be incomplete. Brook, ever up for a challenge, was looking forward to trying.

The funny part was that they didn't even realize what they did. Perhaps it took a musician to see the wonderful harmonies they wove around themselves, how removing even one part would leave the rest of the song sadly incomplete. Or maybe it was because Brook had experienced loss that he paid particular attention to these kinds of interactions. In the end, it didn't matter. Brook was now a part of this strange group, and his dream had been rekindled. All that was left was to sail onwards to unclear and often times dark waters, hated by a world that did not understand, but surrounded by a crew that did.

So as Brook began to settle into his role as musician (Luffy was of the opinion that it was about damn time he got one) he resolved to make it his duty to inspire his new family even more than they already inspired themselves. Using music that originated from the depths of his soul (no skull joke there, his soul was one of the few things he had left) he would keep the spirits of the Straw Hats high. As they brought him out of the fog of Thriller Bark and into the sun, he would never let his crew fall into the depths of despair.

Inspiration is a funny thing. Sometimes it was a nudge in the right direction or a soft word of encouragement during a time of need. Other times it took the form of a song ancient and powerful. But this time, this time it took the form of nine pirates with crazy and impossible dreams that they each believed without a doubt that would come true.

Brook quietly added another line to his nameless song as he sipped his tea and tapped his bony fingers. This was his family, crazy and silly as they were, and as the old skeleton pondered what would be most appropriate to play after dinner, he only hoped that he could inspire them just as much as they had inspired him.