Warning: Some serious awkwardness on Nami's part.( Sorry Nami~)
About an hour later, the young pirate duo arrived at the restaurant Robin had made reservation for them. Slightly different from what Nami had in mind, it was a nice cozy place with tasteful but not too costly decoration. There was a chance that she might overdress herself a little.
The receptionist at the door smiled apologetically at them. "I'm sorry, Sir, but there is no reservation under the name of Mr. Roronoa Zoro or Miss. Nami."
Quirking an eyebrow, Nami gave Zoro an "I told you so" look. On their way here they had had this little discussion during which she had insisted that a reservation should always be made under an alias since they were world infamous pirates with high bounties, while he had argued that was unnecessarily overcautious.
"Try Marimo." Nami advised the receptionist.
"I'm sorry, Ma'am, but I can't find any reservation using the name marimo either."
Now it was Zoro's turn to shoot back an "I told you so" look. "Just in case you haven't noticed, there are nice mature people in this crew who never make fun of my hair color, like Robin." He said quite confidently.
Nami stuck her tongue out at him. He thought it was very silly and yet he couldn't help reaching out his hand to roughly ruffle her hair.
"But I do find a reservation for 'the Roronoas.' "Interrupted the receptionist politely."Do you think this could be yours, Sir?"
"…I'm sorry WHAT?" Nami thought she was having hearing problem. Her face reddened as Zoro cursed quietly:" Stupid Robin."
"Um…yes, I guess that's us." Zoro admitted to the receptionist, uneasily scratching the back of his head. When he saw Nami's blush, he quickly added:" Just to clarify, I'm not going to propose tonight."
Still stunned, Nami gave a slight nod of her head in response. To be honest, the idea hadn't even once crossed her mind before this moment. They'd only been seeing each other for several months after all. It was way too early for them to have that talk and they were both too young to even consider it. However, what she couldn't explain was the slight sense of disappointment that was now gradually welling up inside her.
This was stupid. Why was she even feeling this way? Nami inwardly cursed herself as they were led to their table.
They sat in heavy, awkward silence. Nami hastily took the glass of water on the table and started gulping the cool liquid down just so she could be occupied with something—anything, while Zoro uncomfortably reached for the menu in an attempt to hide his face behind the black leathered cover.
He knew exactly what had caused this. That stupid remark—"I'm not going to propose tonight. "Damn, where the hell did that come from? Instead of all the sensible retorts in the world he just had to bring that up and ruin this moment.
He had wanted tonight to be perfect. He'd wanted to see her smile, to spend quality time with her and to make sure that by the time they returned to the ship this birthday girl would be so happy and content that she could think of nothing more to ask for.
And yet he failed. Moronically. Even before this date had technically begun. Zoro cleared his throat, feeling that a clarification to his previous clarification was strictly in order.
"I'm starving! Let's order, shall we?" she cut him off shortly, snatching the menu from his hand in a swift motion. Her face lit up into a big forced grin.
Zoro bit back his speech. It wouldn't be a good one anyways. And he could tell by the way she was flipping through the menu pages that she was upset.
"Excuse me~" Nami gestured the waiter over, who was an average-looking young man in his mid-twenties, dressed in a black swallow-tailed coat and having ridiculously over pomaded hair.
"Good evening, Ma'am. May I take your order?" He bowed towards Nami, his eyes lingering on her enticing bustline for a second longer than was appropriate.
"Yes, I'd like to hear tonight's special." Nami smiled up at him. "And also, today is my birthday. "She said in a suggestively slow tone.
"Happy birthday. It is my supreme honor to be serving a charming lady on her special day. By the way, you look breathtaking tonight. "The waiter complimented, totally ignoring Zoro's existence. "How would you like some uh, dessert on the house?"
"Oh?" Nami's pouty lips formed a little "o" with feigned surprise. "That's very generous of you~~but truthfully, I was thinking something more…ya know." She winked at the man, a saccharine smile plastered on her face, "I'm sure a nice gentleman like you wouldn't mind knocking off some extra coins from our bill."
Zoro certainly didn't like the way his girlfriend was batting her eyelashes at some greasy haired stranger, but what truly angered him was that the waiter's eyes seemed to be very inappropriately glued on Nami's cleavage.
"Oi, stop staring." He growled.
The young waiter was slightly taken aback by Zoro's unfriendly outburst. "I'm sorry, Sir, but I'm afraid I didn't quite follow you."
"I said, STOP. STARING. " Zoro repeated, stressing every word. One of Nami's pointed heels jabbed into his instep under the table as she tipped him the wink— "I got this", but the stubborn swordsman refused to take the hint.
He shot the waiter one of his most threatening looks. Normally it would send a grown man on his knees begging for mercy; however, it turned out that this particular young waiter was either completely ignorant, or he had some real guts.
"Sir, I'm afriad I don't quite care for the tone you are accusing me." he said, still managing to maintain his polite wording." if you continue to talk this way, I feel obliged to cease my service to you."
"Suits me fine." The swordsman's scowl darkened. Through clenched teeth he demanded: "Send someone who won't be drooling over my date's cleavage like a pervert as you are. Or do I need to gouge your eyes out before you go?"
"Easy, Zoro. "Nami hissed, kicking him under the table again; but her attempt to appease the swordsman was abruptly halted when the waiter, who apparently flew into a rage out of the humiliation, suddenly raised his voice—
"Hey, it's not my fault that your date is a scantily-clad tramp!"
Nami inhaled, completely taken aback by the groundless insult. But before she had time to jump up and give the waiter a piece of her mind, one of Zoro's fists had already collided with the man's face with a loud bang.
The force sent the man flying straight across the room, crashing a table and its guests as he landed awkwardly on his back, smashing all the dishes and glasses in the vicinity. Nami couldn't even tell it was red wine or blood that was now cascading down the man's forehead.
"ZORO—!" She screamed, but her voice was barely distinguishable among all the horrified shrieks from other female guests. She rubbed her temple and sighed in exasperation: the only thing that mattered at the moment was that she gotta stop Zoro before he drew out his swords and made things really bad.
"This is ALL YOUR FAULT!" Nami accused, accelerating her pace down the forest path. The night's silvery moonlight outlined her angry form. With all her orange locks flustered around her face, she looked like she was almost literally on fire.
Zoro silently followed her, but kept a distance between the two of them since he didn't wanna be too close when she was being deafening loud.
"I was putting myself out there trying to get us some discount and you just had to get jealous over nothing and destroy the whole place without a care of how much it'll cost us to compensate! Geez, would it kill you to play along just for once when I take care of things my way? I should've just left you there to do the dishes for them for the rest of your life, you know! " Nami believed that she had every right to be mad because of the sad, irreversible fact that she'd just paid 20,000 belis to cover the destruction Zoro had caused to that restaurant and to buy them out of a possible lawsuit. "Oh and for your information, mister, I'm not sleeping with you tonight!" she shouted angrily.
Great, withholding the sex—ever since Nami discovered that he didn't really care how much money (she insisted) he'd owed her, this had been her new favorite punishment to him. Zoro muttered something profane under his breath before he spoke up. "You've gotta be kidding me, woman. Was I supposed to sit by and watch when you flirted with that jackass?"
"How dare you! I didn't flirt with him!" Nami yelled looking over her shoulder.
"Yes you did." Zoro insisted, his stance unwavering. "And I think I know why. Look, I'm sorry I said that stupid thing about not going to propose, but still that doesn't justify your flirtatiousness. If you wanna get back at me, do it some other way."
"That is—that is so not true!" Nami stuttered, her face flushed due to the mixed feeling of anger and embarrassment. She knew how she sounded right now—miserably in denial. The main reason why she had been unnecessarily friendly to that waiter was just like he said: she was upset and hoped a little harmless flirting could one-up him.
But he didn't have to point it out for her! The fact that he was able to see through her façade so easily only added to the irritation. Deep down inside she was almost scared that Zoro actually knew her this well, sometimes even better than herself.
"Shut up, I'm done talking with you!" she snapped, choosing to ignore how unreasonable and childish she must sound at the moment. "Can't you walk any faster? I wanna go back to the ship and sleep off this stupid date! "She hastened him as she picked up her angry pace again.
Zoro could feel the veins on his forehead pop as he balled his fists along his sides. This date had officially sucked. He had successfully pissed her off AGAIN and he wasn't too happy about her either. A part of him really wanted to yell at her for being such a difficult bitch but he couldn't bring himself to do so—today was her birthday, after all.
On the other hand, he couldn't help but notice that she seemed unusually edgy tonight. Why was she in such a hurry to go back to the ship? Normally it should be him who often had to stop and wait for her when she was in that pair of 4 inches heels.
"Wait—"he strode several steps to catch her, grasping her wrist firmly. "What's really going on, woman?"
"Nothing. Just keep walking and stop trying to talk to me! "
"NAMI." He stressed.
Nami shuddered at the mention of her name. The warning quality in his voice always made her shudder. Most of the time Zoro was quite tolerant when she was being unreasonable, but that was because she knew when to stop.
"Look, I really need to go back to the ship like NOW, okay?" she confessed in a hushed voice, as if fearing someone would hear her in the midst of a desolate forest. "I drank too much water when we were in that restaurant…I really have to go."
It took Zoro a few seconds to digest what she really meant by "I really have to go ". As the information sank in, a low chuckle rumbled from his throat. He looked around briefly and suggested with a shrug. "You can pee here. It's just you and me."
"What—NO~~~~!" Nami's face turned extremely red as she protested. "I will NOT pee in the wild like an uncivilized person!"
Still amused, the swordsman raised one eyebrow: "So you have no problem making out in the woods but you can't pee in one?" He was talking about earlier when they were on their way to the restaurant, this woman had suddenly tugged him by his tie and pressed his unprepared form into a trunk to stuck her tongue down his throat—not that he was complaining, on the contrary, he rather liked it when she was being spontaneous.
"Stop making fun of me!" with one of her wrists in his grip, Nami still managed to hit him with her free hand.
"Ite…I'm just providing a feasible solution, ya know. "Zoro said matter-of-factly, eyeing her high heels which had made contact with his instep more than once in that restaurant. "It'll take at least another 20 minute to get back to the ship—probably 30, with that pair of shoes."
"Thanks, that's a relief to know." The response Nami gave him was dipped in sarcasm.
"You are wasting your time. C'mon, just do it here. "He hastened. "I'll stand guard. No one will see you."
"You'll see me! That's someone!"
"I won't peek. Okay?" Zoro grunted impatiently as he closed his good eye to show her he was fully intended to give her all the privacy she needed.
Nami chewed on her bottom lip and glanced around her surroundings, trying to fight back her self-consciousness. She didn't know why it was so difficult for Zoro to understand, but the last thing she wanted was to have her boyfriend around when she was about to do something so private. It was just too embarrassing.
But apparently her boyfriend didn't think so. He just made it sound like it was the obvious choice given the circumstance. And as much as she hated to admit, this wasn't something she could easily hold back for another 30 minutes. Nami released a defeated sigh as her eyes spotted a shrub along the path. Okay just pretend that is a semi private washroom—she thought to herself.
"Cover your ears; I don't want you to hear me going!" She barked to Zoro as she walked towards the shrub. The swordsman muttered something sounding suspiciously like "what a troublesome woman", but did as asked.
Several seconds after—
"Roronoa Marimo Zoro." Nami 's voice rose from behind the shrub.
"Oi! What the hell did you middle-name me for?" the swordsman almost jumped at the uncalled-for insult.
"That was a test and you just failed. I told you to cover your ears, baka. NOW DO IT!" her accusation came yelling to his feint covered ears. Zoro gritted his teeth and thought she couldn't possibly be any more unreasonable, until he found he was sadly mistaken.
"And as your punishment, you'll have to sing for me while I'm…on it." Nami demanded.
"You heard me. I want you to be my Otohime*."
"NO!" This was way across the line. Zoro felt his hands twitch as he was trying hard not to reach out to strangle her. "I can't sing!"
"Yes you can. I overheard you humming in the shower the other day. Now either you start singing for me, or I'll tell the crew you sing like a little girl when you sponge yourself under the shower nozzle."
Her threat came in an overly sweet tone. For a second Zoro felt like he was dying on the spot. This woman was pure evil! However, after some serious thinking and a vivid mental image of ferociously murdering Nami, the swordsman decided that he'd better surrender now before that sadistic little brain of hers created any more idea to torment him.
"…alright." He sighed. "I'll sing. Can you go pee now? Please?" With his ears covered and eye closed he started humming a tune. Maybe it was one of Brook's violin tunes which had invaded his head due to the skeleton's diligent practice—he really didn't give a damn.
A small smirk formed on Nami's lips as she listened to the swordsman's reluctant humming. Zoro actually had a nice voice. He would even make an equally outstanding singer as Brook was if he wanted to—She thought to herself and smiled wider.
And that murderous look on his face just made him look cuter, if that was possible.
"I love you Zoro." Nami whispered. Normally a confession like this would send him falling over with his face planted in the dirt. They hadn't said the L word to each other yet. So ears really covered. She smirked again, this time for his adorable honesty.
After taking care of her business Nami walked out of the shrub, poking the swordsman in the back.
Zoro turned around, opening his good eye to see her blushing madly as she murmured in an almost inaudible voice: "That didn't happen…you have to forget about it or I'll die."
"That's ok. I'm still quite fond of you." The swordsman laughed and reached out one hand to ruffle her hair. Nami might act like a crazy bitch sometimes, but she's his crazy bitch—so nothing he couldn't really put up with. "Let's go. It's getting late."
"Carry me back to the ship?" she requested.
"NO." he rejected. "You just made me sing for you, woman. No more birthday girl request."
"But these shoes are killing me~~!" she whined.
"Urgh, you are so spoiled." He managed to say it in an annoyed tone. But several second later he found himself squat down and show her his back.
"…Can you believe him? He just had to make a scene and have us kicked out —it's my birthday for God's sake!"After returning to the ship and retreating to the girls' cabin, Nami hastily briefed her roommate about today's chaos. (A certain interlude in the woods was left out, for some obvious reason.)
After the younger woman finished her complaining, Robin lifted one hand to cover her mouth as she chuckled quietly. She wanted to point out that Nami was actually happy that her man had stood up for her in that restaurant, but the mature woman decided that today's quota for teasing her crewmate had been used up.
"I'm terribly sorry for that reservation joke I made, Navigator san. I hope it didn't cause you too much trouble." she apologized politely.
"That's okay." Nami said waving her hand, "even without that I'm sure Zoro would've found some other way to be stupid and annoying. Now, first things first—"her hand reached out to the nightstand where lied her purse. "How much does that idiot owe you?"
"Oh? You know it was me who lent him the money, then? "Now Robin could hardly contain her amused smirk.
"C'mon, who else could it be? The boys are all broke."
"You don't have to pay me back, Nami. Consider it my birthday present for you." Robin smiled.
"Oh, that's so generous of you but—" Nami was interrupted by a knock on the door. She hopped off the bed and walked to the threshold. When the door opened she saw her boyfriend standing there. He had changed back to his old boring green shirt. There was a slightly awkward look on his face.
"Uh… can I talk to you for a sec? " When he felt Robin's curious gaze on them he quickly added. "Alone?"
Nami sighed and dragged him by the hand to the front deck.
"What?" she asked, somewhat impatient.
"It's just that I forgot to tell you…" Zoro paused to scratch the back of his head. "Happy birthday."
Nami face lit up to a genuine smile. "Thanks, Zoro. I had a good time."
But as she turned to leave, the swordsman reached out to grab her wrist again. "Wait."
"What—oh alright~" Nami rolled her eyes but stood on her toes briefly to give him a quick peck on the cheek. "G'night."
"It's not that." he growled.
"It's uh…" Zoro's tongue darted out to wet his lips before he finally spoke up:" I love you too, "Nami's eyes widened at this. "And I love that you said it first."
"You…" she inhaled. And before he could register what had happened, her angry fist was crashing into his face. "YOU DIDN'T COVER YOUR EARS YOU SICK PERVERT!"
"Ite…" Zoro had to bend down to doge another round of her attack as he tried to justify himself. " Well I had to make sure you were safe! What if some bear showed up and attacked you?"
"There was no bear!"
"Stop it crazy woman! I just said I love you and that's how you reacted?" With that he earned himself another punch on the nose bridge. Shit, it really hurt. If she hit their enemies with half the force she hit him, she'd be the Pirate King by now!
"I'm starving~~ that stupid restaurant kicked us out before appetizer. Do you have any idea how much strength it takes to hit you?" Nami whined after shaking her fist to loosen up the sore knuckles. "Come on, Zoro. Let's go dig up my birthday cake."
"I'm not sure if it's still there, cuz…you know."
When they entered the kicthen, they found Luffy bend over the sink with his head buried in a now empty cake pan. Upon hearing their steps the rubber boy lifted his head to greet them merrily: " Zowo…Nabi…You're bag!" he was having a hard time pronouncing his crewmates's names correctly as he made efforts to swallow the mouthful of cake he had just stuffed in.
Zoro and Nami exchanged a look—that was a "why I'm not surprised" look.
"Well look on the bright side, at least he has learnt to eat over the sink." Mused Nami.
"Yes I have!" Luffy nodded eagerly as he swallowed the cake down his throat. " Sanji said I can eat whatever I want as long as I eat it over the sink and quit bugging him!"
"I knew we couldn't trust that curly-brow." Zoro laughed. "Seriously, worst nanny ever!"
"Who are you calling a NANNY, you shitty swordsman?" just then the door was kicked open and the blond cook barged in. He had a light blue shirt in his hand and he was waving it angrily. "I said 'wash it before you return it' didn't I? Now it smells just like you and it's disgusting!"
"It's disgusting you said?" Nami's nose wrinkled as she pulled out her best puppy look. "But Sanji kun, I think it kinda took on my smell when Zoro gave me a piggyback home."
"It smells HEAVENLY, my dear sweet Nami swaaaan~~~I'll never wash it again!" It never ceased to amaze Zoro how quick Sanji was able to shift mode from irritation to blissfulness. He watched in speechless amazement as the cook hugged the shirt tightly into his chest and swirled around in the middle of the room.
Three minutes passed by. Sanji was still twirling in circles while Luffy, again with his head in the sink, had begun to lick the remaining cream off the cake pan.
"Do you wanna go have sex?" Nami asked Zoro, a bored look on her face, "They wouldn't even notice we're gone."
"Yeah, why not." Zoro shrugged.
Author's Note: Yay! Finished! Way before Zoro's B-day!
Hope it's funny, at least…Well, not much to say except for: R&R, my dear readers~~~! You've always been so sweet to me so why stop now? :)
Tell me what you wanna read next, I'm collecting ideas for my next ZoNa fic.
Note on Japanese language:
Otohime— Music Princess. It is a device designed for ladies who think the sound of urination is indecent. They would play the Otohime to cover any undesirable sound they make in the washroom.
See ya next time. XD