Luffy shielded his eyes from the light with his straw hat as he descended the stairs of the stage. He didn't quite say all he had to say, but this night isn't about him. This night belongs to his parents. He didn't want to ruin that. After his speech, the music began and the dancing continued. The dance floor immediately overflowed with people.
When Luffy reached the bottom of the stairs, he was greeted by a small crowd running towards him. He grinned when saw the faces of his crew running for him. He was embraced - more like tackled - by the eight pairs of arms of his crew, but his grin never left his face.
"Luffy! I.. I didn't miss you at all!" cried Franky.
"We're finally together again!" Usopp cried.
"Welcome back, Luffy-san!" said Vivi. The smile on Luffy's face never faded. Smiling back at him is the crew whom he hasn't seen in two years. But there was one face missing in the crowd. He looked past his crew and saw that one person still sitting at the table. She looked back at them with a wanting looking on her face.
"Excuse me," murmured Luffy. As if they never parted, his crew understood and parted themselves, creating an open pathway just for him.
Nami felt confused when she saw the crew part ways. In the middle appeared Luffy, making way towards her. She bit her bottom lip as he got closer. She could feel her heart start to race. It took all her strength not to jump up and hug him and kiss him. They are no longer together. She could be doing those things to another girl's boyfriend for all she knew.
Nami looked up. None of his features have changed. The scar on his left cheek, his black orbs. His raven black hair seemed longer and from her angle, and he seemed taller. His neck was slightly thicker and his muscles have somewhat grown. Other than that, he still looked like the same Luffy she fell in love with.
Luffy stretched a hand out to her. Nami looked up at his face. She smiled when she saw his smile. She took his hand and stood up. A pair of arms intertwined around her, as she did the same to him. This warmth, she hasn't felt in so long. His touch still sent shivers down her spine. She missed it.
"I've missed you so much," murmured Nami. Luffy squeezed her.
"I'm sorry for leaving you."
Nami was caught off by another girl's scream. Luffy broke away from the hug and turned around with a big smile on his face. The crew walked over, having the same expression on Nami's face, confusion. Nami's confusion grew when a girl appeared from the crowd. Its wasn't anyone she recognized. She had short blonde hair and her dress was short - really short and revealed a lot of skin. This girl had a huge smile on her face when she spotted Luffy waving towards her. The heels of her high heels tapped the floor harshly as she got closer. The fact that Luffy was smiling the exact same way was making Nami's hair stand. When this mystery girl finally came over, she wrapped her arms around Luffy's arm and grinned widely. From that, Nami felt uncomfortable.
"Where did you disappear off to?" Luffy asked her.
"Sorry, I got lost when everyone started dancing again."
Usopp cleared his throat to get their attention. Luffy smiled and turned to face them.
"Sorry. Guys, this is Marguerite."
"Hi! Pleased to meet you. Luffy has told me so much about his amazing crew, I just had to come with him and meet you guys myself," said Marguerite.
"'Come with him?'" Chopper quoted.
"Marguerite and I met while I was out traveling with Rayleigh-ossan. She decided to travel with us for the rest of the trip. Now, she's moving here and I'm helping her look for a place to live."
Nami rubbed her arm as she took a step back. Robin noticed and went to comfort her friend. Unfortunately, Luffy didn't notice.
"So, you guys have been together the entire time you were away?" Vivi asked the one question that has been in everyone's mind.
"Pretty much," Luffy answered. "She's really strong and smart! She helped a lot with my training."
Everyone else in the crew narrowed their eyes to Nami who was now hiding herself in the back of the crew. Tears flooded the surface of her eyes, but they never came down. All of them seem to understand how she must be feeling, except for one certain person in the group.
From the table, Nami watched as Luffy reunited with his parents. Makino had the biggest smile on her face at finally reuniting with her long lost son. Shanks was giving him a noogie, for worrying his mother so much while he had tears flowing down his own cheeks. With his hair sticking up from Shanks' "greeting," Luffy introduced Marguerite to them. Makino had the same reaction Nami did, she noticed her revealing dress first and felt cautious about it. Shanks, on the other hand, felt unsure of what to say, so he just smiled and nodded.
Watching Nami from beside food table, Robin, Vivi, and Zoro couldn't help but watch.
"She's a desperate mikan," said Robin.
"What does he think he's doing?" asked Zoro. "Dump the one girl he's ever fallen in love with, leaves for two years, then magically shows up with another girl?"
"We're not even sure if they're dating yet," Robin defended.
"But Mr. Bushido has a point. How would you feel if another girl showed up with him?" asked Vivi. Robin didn't say a word. She knew she'd feel the same way Nami is feeling now.
"By the way, where the hell is idiot lovely?" asked Zoro. Vivi pursed her lips and pointed under the table. Robin lifted the cloth and she and Zoro leaned down. Rocking himself in ball form was Sanji, hiding under the table.
"Beautiful.. Goddess.. Women.. Vivi-chan good.. okama bad..."
"What is wrong with him?" asked Robin. Vivi only shrugged.
"He said something about Zeff sending him off to a horrible place."
"Leave him. Everyone's better off with him this way anyway," said Zoro. Vivi glared at him. Out of no where, Ace appeared from behind the food table.
"I heard what you guys were talking about, and I know how you feel," said Ace. "For as long as I've known Luffy, he's only ever had two girlfriends, Hancock and Nami. Considering the fact that he only ever loved Nami and always has, I'm surprised he's calm with the fact that he's practically rubbing this new girl all over Nami's face."
"So, you're saying you don't like her?" asked Vivi.
"Well, he's my brother. I can't just not support him, and I've gotta admit, she's pretty hot."
Ace earned a harsh slap to the arm by Vivi.
"I'm telling Nojiko," said Robin.
The wedding ended with Makino and Shanks driving off and leaving for their honeymoon. All the guests left, aside from the Straw Hats who volunteered to stay and clean up. By then, all of the paparazzi have gone as well.
While folding the last tablecloth, Nami noticed Luffy walking towards her way. She knew, because there wasn't anyone else around. His face was serious, something she hasn't seen in a while.
"We need to talk." Nami felt her heart start to race. "Can you call everyone and meet me by the ocean?"
Disappointment was all Nami felt after hearing what Luffy had to say. Obviously, she expected something else to come out of his mouth, but it didn't. But either way, she couldn't just not obey his command. As her captain, he obviously had something important to say to the rest of the crew.
The Straw Hats gathered by the ocean where Luffy and Marguerite stood waiting. Because of them waiting together, Nami had an odd feeling about what Luffy has to say. The others, on the other hand, were curious.
"I have a surprise for all of you. So, I need you to go home and pack everything you own and meet me in front of Grand Line Academy," said Luffy.
"WHAT?" Everyone was completely astonished. This completely came out of no where. Just like Luffy's big decision that affected everyone.
"W-What do you mean pack our stuff? What's going on?" asked Usopp.
"Are you trying to make us go on another trip or-" Franky started, but was interrupted.
"No! You've got it wrong," said Marguerite. "I'm sure whatever Luffy has will be a good a use to everyone."
"And how do you know?" asked Zoro.
"I mean, this is you captain, right? Shouldn't you have more faith in him?"
The tension in the crew rose. After Luffy's actions at the hospital two years ago, they never seem to know what Luffy will do next. Another reason why this completely surprised them. Sure, Luffy has gotten them into a whole heap of trouble, but he always manages to get them out of it. This is Luffy after all.
"C-Can you at least tell us what's going on?" asked Vivi. All of this was starting to scare her, and not just her, but everyone else.
"If I did, then it wouldn't be as much fun," said Luffy. Nami sighed, then smiled. Just your average typical Luffy doing what he does best. She missed that side of him.
"Trust me. I promise, I won't scare you like I did last time."
That was all everyone had to go off of. No clues and no warning, all they have is to trust their captain and know he knows what he's doing.
Inside the Alabasta Inn.'s penthouse suite, Vivi and Robin packed Vivi's stuff together. It was hard considering Vivi's closet was practically the size of a bedroom.
"And I just got everything settled too," Vivi whined as she folded another blouse.
"Mine are still in my bag," said Robin.
"That's because you got here late."
"I'm sorry, but its not my fault."
Vivi sighed. "What is Luffy-san thinking? What is going on?"
"Which are you talking about? The surprise or Marguerite?"
"Both! You saw the sadness in Nami-san's eyes. I feel so terrible. How could he do that? Rub his new girlfriend right in front of Nami-san. If it were Sanji-san..."
"Calm down. We're not even sure if she is his girlfriend, and Luffy's not the type of guy to do that."
"You never know." Just then, Cobra appeared at the doorway.
"Papa, I'm surprised you haven't asked about all of this."
"Luffy-kun and I already talked this out."
Vivi blinked in surprise. "You and.. when?!"
"A day before you came back."
"Tell us! What's he planning?"
Cobra shrugged and shook his head. "I have no clue, but what ever it is, I'm sure you'll be safe."
"But I'm packing all of my stuff. I might not live here anymore."
Cobra smiled. He placed a hand on her shoulder and squeezed it lightly. "Vivi, the day you moved out to start college was the day I knew I raised a strong girl. That was the day I also knew that I you're a woman now, you too, Robin. Both of you left and started your future on your own. From that day on, I don't have control over the both of you anymore. You're old enough to handle yourselves."
Tears surfaced in Vivi's eyes. She hugged her father tight and cried.
Robin chuckled and wiped a single tear that escaped her eye. "It looks like you were miscorrected on Vivi's side of that speech, Cobra."
Cobra smiled and rubbed the top of his daughter's head. "No, I'm sure I'm right."
Chopper screamed for his life as he ran from his room to the front door. Pursuing after him with a sword and gun was his crazy grandmother.
"WAIT, YOU SHITTY BRAT! I'M NOT FINISHED WITH YOU! YOU'RE STAYING HERE!" yelled Chopper's grandmother, Doctorine.
"NO! I'M OLD ENOUGH TO DO WHATEVER I WANT NOW!"
"GET BACK HERE!"
As soon as Chopper reached the front door, he didn't hesitate to stop. It was odd. When he left for college, his grandmother never acted this crazy about him attending college, which was in another city. Whatever Luffy's case is with this whole surprise, Chopper was happy. As long as he's with Luffy, he knew he'll be fine. That's why he got so excited and immediately started packing. When his grandmother found out, she got aggressive and started throwing objects at him and yelled for him not to leave, almost like he was never coming back.
Iceburg watched as his brother figure packed most of his stuff. Almost everything in Franky's large room was empty aside from his bed and desk.
"So, you're really going.." said Iceburg.
"Yea." Franky placed his duffel bags on his shoulder and pulled the handles on his rolling luggage. "I never expected to ever leave this place because of Tom-san.."
"You still blame yourself for the explosion? Even after Tom-san forgave you, even after I forgave you, you still blame yourself for what happened."
Franky looked at his bags. He remembered that day as if it was only yesterday. Tom-san, his foster father, died because of an accident he caused. Franky was only experimenting with the different chemicals and junk they had lying around in the garage. The next thing he knew, the garage exploded, burning and hurting Tom, Iceburg, and Franky. Out of all of them, Tom was the one who suffered the most. Because of the explosion, Iceburg has blamed Franky for all that has happened to them.
"Like you haven't made it clear that it was all my fault."
"It's been ten years. I remind you to make you grow stronger, to never make that mistake again, to live on and never forget that day."
"You make it sound like I'm never coming back."
"Leaving the place and becoming a man, huh?" Yasopp asked his son.
"What makes you think I'm leaving this place?" Usopp focused on packing his clothes as he talked with his father.
"So, Luffy hasn't told you yet? Bummer."
"Told us what? What are you talking about?"
"Sorry, kid. You'll find out when your captain tells ya. By the way, are you really going to stuff everything you have into one big bag?" Yasopp nodded to Usopp's oversized backpack which wouldn't probably fit through the door.
"Nojiko, why do I have a feeling you know something about Luffy's secret?"
Nojiko only smiled innocently. She has been having mixed moods ever since Nami told her what Luffy said. She happily helped her pack, but felt depressed as soon as they finished. Right now, Nami stood on their front porch along with all of her belongings. Not knowing what Luffy has in store for them, she wasn't sure whether to say goodbye to her sister or not.
"If you ever need me, you know where to find me," said Nojiko.
"Is this goodbye?" asked Nami.
"I wouldn't say that." Nojiko smiled and hugged her little sister. "I know you've only been here for a day, but it was fun."
Nami hesitated, then returned the hug. "Tell me what's happening."
Nojiko pulled away. She smiled and shook her head. "You'll find out when Luffy tells you. I'll be right here when you need me."
Nami pulled Nojiko in for another hug. Their goodbye before Nami left for college was similar to this. Did this mean she won't see her sister for another while? At least this time, she has her friends with her.
Nami turned around and saw Vivi, Robin, and Sanji waving to her from the fence. Nami placed the straps of her bags on her shoulders. She turned back to her sister and smiled.
"I'll be going then."
"Take care of yourself, okay?"
Nami nodded. She pulled the handles of her rolling luggages and headed to where her friends were. Nojiko watched them until they made a turn, disappearing from her view. She sighed sadly and closed the front door.
"Sanji-kun, why are you wearing sunglasses when its dark out?" asked Nami. It was the first thing she noticed and she couldn't help but ask. Sanji shook his head rapidly.
"Tony-kun says its therapy," Vivi explained.
"Therapy? For what?"
"Sanji has been having a lot of nosebleeds lately. All due to seeing any beautiful women passing by," said Robin.
"It's really bad," said Vivi. "Its a lot worst than when he was a pervert back then. The glasses are so he won't see much at night. I feel bad."
"Wow, I'm surprised you haven't ended it yet," said Nami.
"I can't leave him behind," said Vivi with a pout. Nami cocked an eyebrow and turned to Robin. Robin chuckled and shrugged.
When they got to the street leading to the school was when they saw that everyone had already gathered. Even Ace was waiting along with everyone. Luffy and Marguerite sat together on a small brick wall holding the plants. Both of them had their luggages by their sides.
Robin picked up her speed and greeted Zoro with a hug. That fact that they haven't seen each other nor talked to one another in two years, Nami wouldn't be surprised if they showed a little more PDA than they did before.
"Yosh, everyone's here," said Luffy. He stood up and placed his backpack over his shoulders and reached for the handles of his other bags. "Follow me."
"Mind telling us where we're going?" asked Franky.
"Yea, Luffy!" Chopper ran to catch up to his captain in the front. "My grandma almost killed me!"
"And can you tell me why my father is fine with Robin and I leaving?" asked Vivi.
"Same here. My dad said you and him had a talk days before I got here," said Usopp.
"Well, I had to get permission. There was no way I was going to do this without letting everyone know," explained Luffy.
"Can you tell us what's going on already?" asked Zoro.
"Do you know, Marguerite-san?" asked Brook. Marguerite shook her head.
"We're on the same level here."
Zoro exhaled deeply then noticed Sanji hasn't said a word all night. He chuckled.
"What's wrong, Curly Brow? Cat caught your tongue?"
A vein appeared on Sanji's head. Vivi felt the hand holding his being squeezed.
"I have nothing to say," was all Sanji said.
Vivi pursed her lips. "What happened to you the past two years, Sanji-san?"
"Its best you don't know."
Nami smiled when Ace, Franky, and Zoro started teasing the miserable cook. She missed this about her crew. Then, she felt as though she was being watched. She faced the front and saw Marguerite turn away from her at the last second. This was making Nami feel more awkward that it should.
No one was out and it was late at night. They walked for another ten minutes until they reached the gate of a large house. Vivi ran up to the gate and gazed at it.
"Wow, this place is beautiful," said Vivi. The house was three stories high and designed into a traditional japanese home. It was almost bigger than their beach house. A driveway started from the gate and surrounded the entire house. There was a large lake to its right and the gardening was done beautifully.
"It's really pretty. I never knew this was here in the neighborhood," said Chopper. The house wasn't that far from the academy, and not once has he or anyone from the crew ever seen this here.
"It's new," said Franky.
"How do you know?" asked Zoro.
"The paint, the garden, its all new. I heard some millionaire bought the lot and paid for a customizable mansion for his family over a month ago."
"Thousand Sunny, huh?" Sanji read the name of the mansion.
"I'd want to live in a place like that," said Nami.
Everyone's eyes grew wide and they turned to Luffy and stared at him like he was crazy. "WHAT?"
"Huh? Didn't you hear me? I said, we're all going to live here together!"
I'm going to try something I haven't done in GLA and thats give the other Straw Hats more spotlight. I only focused on Luffy&Nami with a bit of Zoro&Robin and Sanji&Vivi. The other characters are important too!
Also, thank you for all of your reviews on the last chapter. You guys were so excited when the first chapter came out and your comments literally brought a smile to my face. I'm terribly sorry on going on break right after posting the last chapter, but I have a lot in store for you guys. This will be just like Grand Line Academy with 40 chapters or more. The chapters will be a lot longer too so its going to take me some time.
Also, let me point out that the Straw Hats attended two years of college during those two years if you haven't already known. They got stronger and smarter individually and they got back together to achieve the goal they've been all aiming for.