Zoro stands stock still in the street with the phone pressed to his ear, he understands what he's being told, mentally he does but... he can't wrap the rest of him around the idea.
"I- yes. Thanks for telling me." He says numbly and hangs up.
He needs to sit down before his legs give up under him, he stumbles right across the street into some kind of café and falls into one of the seats at the bar. His hands are in his hair and trembling, the flowers that he'd got her are gone, he probably dropped them outside. It doesn't matter now, he supposes. Kuina is really gone for good, he'd been hoping for so long that she'd wake up and- he chokes back the sound in his throat but some of it slides out between clenched teeth.
He's staring down at the counter hard enough to bore holes into it when a drink and a large piece of pie are slid under his face. His head snaps up, he'd not even ordered anything.
"It's good, you should eat and drink." The blonde waiter tells him softly. Words die in Zoro's throat so he just nods stiffly. His hands wrap around the white mug before him and he mechanically brings it to his mouth, destroying the heart in cocoa on the top of it. It's something warm and chocolaty, it slides down his throat, coating his tongue in some wonderful flavour. He swallows and the world seems to stop spinning so hard, the waiter smiles at him.
"In my experience, there are two kinds of problems. Ones you can't do anything about no matter what, there's no point worrying about those, it's hopeless. And then there's ones that you can do something about, you just need to work out what it is for that and do it, not worry about it. Either way, worrying is pointless, so don't feel so bad." The blonde says sagely.
"I don't… I don't think that applies here." He says clumsily as the image of Kuina's still chest with no breath of life in it flashes behind his eyes. She's gone, she's really really gone. Some part inside of him hurts so badly that he's not sure it'll ever stop, he appreciates this guy's attempts to help but this will never feel okay.
"Sure it does, that's why it's Zen fucking wisdom I'm dishing out here. Hey, I guarantee that when you finish your drink and that pie and walk out that door, you won't feel as bad as you do now." The guy says confidently, his hands on his slender hips.
"You don't know what I'm going through." Zoro challenges, part of him hating how whiny and self-absorbed that sounds.
"Buddy, you don't know my pie." The blonde grins cockily at him and saunters off in his black suit out into the back of the café.
Zoro shakes his head in disbelief. What the hell is that guy on? Still, Kuina would have liked that kind of "Zen fucking wisdom", it would have made her laugh. He's never stopped thinking about her, about what she would have said if she'd been around, or what she would have thought of someone or something. He's spent so much of his time these last five years with a ghost it's not all that dissimilar to be thinking about her now that she actually is dead.
He sighs and pokes at the pie with his fork, he should eat, even though he doesn't feel like eating. He knows what he gets like when he gets down though, his appetite tanks and he's gone days without eating before simply because he didn't feel like it and forgot. When Kuina was first hospitalised he lost nearly a stone.
The crust of the pie is flaky and buttery, it melts in his mouth belying the bittersweet berry filling inside. He's not one for real sweet stuff so the tartness of the fruit is pleasing, it matches surprisingly well with the hot chocolate drink that he's been given too.
He eats and thinks and through it all he misses Kuina, he'd do anything to take her place, she was the one with real talent- not him. It wasn't fair.
"Life isn't fair Zoro." Her exasperated voice runs through his mind. He tangles a hand in his hair, why couldn't she just be here with him telling him that? Why, why, why?
By the time he finishes his pie and his drink he doesn't feel a whole lot better, but less like he's going to cry or crumple up into a ball. Instead he just feels kind of hollow inside, like someone's scooped his insides out with an ice cream scoop.
A muffled argument out back catches his attention, as well as the blonde waiter's who pauses to listen in the middle of wiping down one of the otherwise entirely empty tables that fill the place. Actually, there's no one else in here but him and the blonde.
"Way to show up to work on time Patty." The waiter mutters to himself, dropping the cloth in the sink as he passes.
"Hey, what do I owe you?" Zoro says, catching the blonde's attention.
The man seems to regard him for a moment before strolling over. The guy has to be about Zoro's age, though they're nothing alike, this guy is slender and fancy looking with his suit and his perfect golden hair swept dramatically over half of his face.
"You don't owe me a thing." He says simply, his hands stuffed casually in his pockets.
"For the pie and the drink." Zoro says, as if that'll clarify things.
"You didn't eat or drink anything." The blonde says with a snort, picking up Zoro's crockery and dropping it into the bin behind the bar with a loud crash.
"What are you- hey, look, just take the money." Zoro frowns, pulling a twenty out of his wallet and trying to hand it to the guy. The waiter just dodges it though.
"Take it!" Zoro snaps, if it's pity this guy is giving him by feeding him for free, he doesn't want it!
"Sir, stop waving money at me, it's insulting. I'm going to have to ask you to leave!" The blonde says loudly, loudly enough for some ugly guy to stick his head out of the back.
"Sanji! Stop yelling!" The guy shouts himself as he comes out from the back room, oblivious to the contradiction in his own words.
"Patty, this crazy guy has just come in off the street shouting crazy shit and waving money in my face. I'm throwing him out!" he declares.
"HEY! I'm just trying to pay for my goddamn meal!" Zoro argues, disliking being called crazy by some clearly whacko waiter. He glances at the countertop though and realises that with no plate or mug it looks like he hasn't eaten anything at all and like the blonde's story is true.
As one the waiter and this new guy haul him out of the little café and out into the street, ignoring his angry shouted protests at being manhandled.
"And stay out, you crazy bastard!" the blonde shouts at him and moves to shut the door, Zoro gets his shoulder in it first though.
"You're the crazy one!" Zoro snarls, trying to shove his money through the door.
"You're pretty angry huh?" The blonde remarks casually as he shoves back on the door, ducking the money again.
"Of course I am!" He yells, contemplating just flinging the money in the café and legging it.
"You're not sad though, are you?" The blonde says quietly, with smugness radiating from him.
Zoro pauses. He's not sad, he'd not been thinking of Kuina that entire time, he's just… ticked off right now. The dumbass blonde had actually distracted him from his pain for a few moments.
Sensing an opportunity the blonde slams the door shut on him and locks it before pulling a smartass grin and sticking his tongue out at Zoro through the window. A smile flickers on the edge of Zoro's mouth before drying up after a second but still… the scrawny blonde had won.
Reluctantly Zoro shoves the money back in his pocket and looks around outside. His outburst attracted a fair few stares from passers-by, but he doesn't care about that. Petals swirl around his feet and he spots the white bouquet he dropped a little further up the road. He doesn't go to get it, Kuina isn't in a state to appreciate it now, but it does give him an idea of where he can crash for tonight. He turns on his heel away from the strange man in the café and heads to Robin's house.