Aphagia: The disturbance between the formation and comprehension of language


Chopper looked up at the sharpshooter worriedly. It wasn't like him to make such strange noises. "Zoro said 'That was really brave of you back there. Good job'."

It was quite some time before Usopp could say anything comprehensible, but his goofy grin and the faraway look in his eye made the message perfectly clear.

Bile: A bitter, greenish-brown alkaline fluid that aids digestion

Nami was by the toilet, heaving her guts out. There was little for Chopper to do except hold back her hair and try not to get anything splattered on him.

The life of a doctor was not as marvelous as it was made out to be.

"I think I'm dying," Nami rasped.

"You've got the stomach flu. You might be a little dehydrated, but you're not dying," Chopper assured her.

"It feels like I'm dying." Before Chopper could argue, Nami's head was back in the toilet.

"Is my Nami-dearest going to be alright?" Sanji called from the doorway, having already been denied entry earlier in the evening. "Does she need anything? Broth, toast, perhaps?"

"Some clear fluids would be great, but her stomach needs to be settled enough before she eats anything," Chopper replied.

"Roger that. Also, Usopp says to say last Robin checked we're still on course, and that Franky's going to take your watch tonight. And Shitty Mosshead's keeping Luffy occupied, so he won't bug you."

"Okay," Nami said weakly.

The soft sound of a violin filtered through the bathroom, and instantly some of the strain on Nami's face eased.

"Whatever did I do to deserve friends like you?" she whispered.

Once again, her dry-heaves interrupted any answer Chopper might have given.

Circadian Rhythm: A diverse, yet predictable cycle of change in physiologic factors over a twenty-four hour time period. The body's 'biologic clock'

Chopper rubbed his hooves over his blurry eyes. "You're still awake?" he asked the newest Straw Hat through a yawn.

Robin looked up from her coffee, her eyes flashing with an emotion that he couldn't quite place before her face settled into its normal unreadable mask.

"I often stay up late, Doctor," she said quietly.

"You mean you don't sleep well?"


When she didn't elaborate, Chopper frowned and went to the fridge for a drink of milk. "I could give you something to help," he offered.

"That won't be necessary, Doctor. It doesn't bother me much, and, well…" Robin hesitated for a moment, "It's been this way for a long time. There's no need to worry on my behalf."

Chopper wanted to argue that it was his job to worry, but something in her voice made him stop. Besides, it was two o'clock in the morning, and he'd be hard pressed to make her a sleeping draught tonight. After putting his glass in the sink, he went over and gave her a quick hug.

"'Kay. G'night, Robin." With another jaw-popping yawn, Chopper shuffled back to bed.

It was only because of his enhanced hearing that he heard Robin whisper, "Good night, Doctor," when she thought he was out of earshot.

Dermatome: The area of skin enervated by a single spinal root

"So…you're a cyborg?"

"The most super cyborg you'll ever meet!"

Chopper, who had never met one before, decided have to take Franky's word for it. Tenderly he began prodding on the strange artificial flesh. It had an almost rubbery texture, reminding the doctor of Luffy.

"Yow!" Franky exclaimed as one leg kicked out spastically. "Watch what you're doin', bro! I had to reconnect most of my nerves, ya know!"

Looking up in horror, Chopper suppressed a whimper. That sounded awful. Then, purely out of clinical curiosity, he poked the same spot again to see if he could get the same result.

Erythrocyte: A red blood cell

How was Zoro even alive?

It was one of the questions that kept Chopper up at night. Because, seriously, he shouldn't be. Say what you want about Mihawk being the strongest, most precise swordsman in the world, the wound he gave Zoro should have killed him. The nasty scar across his chest was proof. There had been no doctor, for goodness sake! The poorly stitched together muscle should have torn apart; Zoro should have bled to death before infection even had a chance to set in.

But it hadn't, and Zoro lived.

Chopper wasn't quite sure Zoro was totally human. Had he not seen the swordsman jump into the ocean several times the reindeer would have automatically assumed he had eaten some sort of Devil Fruit that allowed him to regenerate copious amounts of blood, because there really was no other explanation.

It was one of the things Chopper admired about Zoro. Not that he kept getting himself hurt, he thought that was dumb, but the fact that he could bounce back from anything. That was amazing.

Maybe, someday, he could be a man like that.

Flight of Ideas: The continuous flow of rapid speech that jumps from one topic to another

"Chopper, you and Luffy go look for something edible," Nami said forcefully.

"We get to go exploring!" Luffy said, nearly bursting with excitement.

"Yes, now you and Chopper get going! There's only a few hours of daylight left."

"Alright! Let's go, Chopper! Do you think there are any big monsters?"

"I don't know. I hope not."

"I do. We haven't fought anything strong in a long time, and it's boring, plus the big ones always taste better. Ooh, do you think Sanji can make that one thing that tasted really good, with the stuff that was kind of spicy, but not really?"

Chopper shrugged and went the ladder. He was excited, too. New places were always fun. With a grin, Luffy shot off towards the island, hardly waiting for Chopper to catch up.

"Come on! We don't know what kind of awesome stuff we're going to find!"

The pair spent the entire day on the island, only making their way back to the ship as the sun was sinking below the horizon.

"…And the big beetle ended up winning, because I accidently got the other one stuck in my nose."

Chopper giggled, and then stopped short when he saw Nami's expression.

"Where have you been?! It's nearly dark; we've been worried sick about you guys! And your clothes! What happened?" she shrieked.

"Shishishi! Me 'n Chopper got stuck in a sink hole, and then there was a cave with glowy caterpillars. Nothing to fight, but the caterpillars did bite if you tried to poke them with a stick." With a wide smile, Luffy looked at the sunset. "It was a fun adventure, but now I'm hungry. Sanji, MEAT!"

Nami gave an exasperated sigh as their captain ran towards the cook. "Has he been like this all day?"

"Yep," Chopper said happily. "Just like always."

Geriatric: Pertaining to the elderly or the aging process

Chopper wondered if he would ever meet a normal old person. His only real experience with the elderly was Dr. Hiliruk, Dr. Kureha, and now that they had left Thriller Bark, Brook.

The reindeer was pretty sure he would get hit for calling any one of those people old.

The musician was dancing in circles along the deck of the Sunny, singing a rather bawdy sea shanty, and generally making his presence known.

Briefly Chopper considered writing Dr. Kureha about his newest patient. He didn't really know what he would tell her, other than the fact that, yeah, he was taking care of a walking, talking, skeleton-musician who might have gone a little crazy.

There was something to be said about the nature of the Straw Hat Pirates when there was no question as to whether or not Brook would fit in.

Hypochondriac: A person who is abnormally anxious about their health

"I really can't go on that island."

"Oh, come on! It'll be great!"

"Yeah, you're wasting time. Hurry up."

"No, guys, you don't understand," Usopp put a hand to his chest as he began to hyperventilate. "Did you not hear all the crazy dangerous stuff is on there?! I'll die!"

Zoro grabbed him by the back of his shirt and slung him across his shoulder. "We're pirates, idiot. It's stupid to worry about stuff like that when we could die any time. Now, we're going. Luffy said so."

Tears of despair rolled down Usopp's face and he waved melodramatically to the ship's mast. "Good bye, cruel world! If I don't return, know that the Great Captain Uso—Eek!" Usopp was cut off as Zoro casually tossed him overboard.

Chopper leaned over the rails worriedly until he saw Usopp sputter to the surface, shouting profanities. Then, assured everything would be just fine, he went to making rumble balls.

Inspiratory Capacity: The volume of gas that can be taken into the lungs in a full inhalation

"Okay, Luffy, I need you to take a deep breath for me."

Luffy nodded seriously, screwed his face in concentration, and it was only too late Chopper realized his mistake.

"Luffy, no!"

"Gum Gum Balloon!"

Chopper bit down on a rumble ball and immediately shifted into Guard Point as his captain's expanding belly threw him across the deck. After rolling around like tumbleweed, he managed to get to his feet, shaken but unharmed.

"Was that good enough, Chopper? If you want, I can do it again."

Joint: A point where two bones connect

"Someone find a doctor!"

"Doctor, you are the doctor," Robin reminded Chopper gently, cradling her arm against her body.

"Right, sorry!" Jerking his head back and forth, Chopper looked for his backpack. After spotting it, he raced over, grabbed it, and then hurried to Robin.

"I believe it's dislocated," she said calmly.

Chopper examined her elbow, confirming her diagnosis. "Wow, you must have fought someone really strong."

Robin's smile was grim. "Not necessarily, I simply was careless." Chopper nodded, and injected her with a pain killer.

"There, that should help. I can't put it back into place by myself; let's get you back to the Merry."

"Thank you, Doctor."

Chopper wiggled in delight. "Don't think the praise makes me happy, asshole!"

Kyphosis: Curving of the spine, which leads a bowing or rounding of the back. The 'hunchback' appearance

She looked so tired. Chopper leaned from his hiding spot, trying to get a better view of the princess. He had never met a princess before, only a king, and Vivi was much kinder than Wapol ever could hope to be.

"Hello, Chopper," She said, smiling. "You're doing it backwards again." Chopper jumped and reversed himself, but by then it was too late.

"What're you doing?" Chopper asked, gathering his courage. She didn't seem to be doing much of anything, just looking out at the ocean, even though it was dark out and she probably couldn't see.

"Just thinking, that's all," Vivi said.

"Oh. You know, if it gets cold you can come in."

She laughed. "Thank you, Chopper, but I'm fine for now. Thank you for offering."

Chopper nodded and went to rejoin the others. Being a princess must be hard, much harder than being a doctor, for the weight of her duty to make her shoulders droop like that. He hoped that they would get to Alabasta soon and fix everything. Chopper hadn't had friends for very long, but he already realized that he didn't like seeing them in pain.

Lichenification: Thickening of the skin caused by chronic irritation resulting from prolonged itching or irritation

Chopper was hard at work in his infirmary making a new moisturizer for Franky. The poor cyborg's skin was a mess. Half of it wasn't even real, but where the artificial flesh met natural skin chafed and rubbed, which had to be horribly irritating. Plus, his mechanical inner parts (which Chopper couldn't make head or tail of, much to his chagrin) were a different temperature which just made everything weird.

Franky didn't complain, he had probably gotten used to it years ago, but that didn't mean that Chopper had to stand by and do nothing. Treating Franky would be hard enough; Chopper was a doctor not an engineer, so he might as well do what he could to make the cyborg's life a little easier.

Macrophage: A large phagocytic cell found in stationary form in tissues or as a mobile white blood cell

"So you've never been sick? Ever?" Chopper asked in awe.

"Nope," Luffy said, not bothering to stop picking his nose. "It's 'cause I'm too strong!"

Knowing he couldn't properly explain to his captain that infection did not work that way, Chopper sighed. Instead he fell back on the age-old Maxim that Doctorine had shoved into his head time and again.

Idiots don't get sick.

Nitrogen Balance: The amount of nitrogen the body excretes versus how much it takes in. A negative balance is an indicator of malnutrition

Sanji was always very particular with the Straw Hat's diet. The cook was very good with working with Chopper in coming up with a meal plan that would meet whatever nutritional needs the crew was going through at the moment.

After they reunited after their two year separation, however, things got a little out of hand.

"Sanji, I don't know what you're talking about!" Chopper cried. "I've never heard of food that works that way, but if you say your new recipes will help heal everyone, for goodness sake make it!"

Osteogenesis: The formation of new bone tissue

He was desperate. Brook was unconscious and suffering from multiple fractures, and Chopper didn't know what to do. How far would Brook's Devil Fruit carry him? How was he supposed to treat a skeleton?

Had Brook been awake, Chopper would have forced him to drink all the milk he could stand. As it was, the doctor didn't want to accidently have Brook aspirate (could he aspirate? He didn't have lungs!) if he just forced liquids down his throat.

Out of ideas, Chopper grabbed some IV tubing and drilled a small hole in his tibia. He then inserted the line and ran milk as fast as it would flow. If Brook somehow ate and drank like a normal, alive person then there was no reason he couldn't receive intraosseous fluids like one, too. And if normal people would never, ever got milk inserted into their bone marrow, well, that was beside the point.

Palpitation: A strong or irregular heartbeat caused by agitation, illness, or exertion

"Don't!" Whack! "Ever!" Whack! "Do anything!" Whack, whack! "So dumb!" Whack! "Again!"

Nami stopped her beat down of Luffy, panting with exertion. The rubber man peeled himself off of the ground, numerous knots already beginning to rise on his head.

"But Nami!"

Whack! Back down to the ground he went. "No!" she exclaimed. "Never! I nearly had a frikkin' heart attack because of you, you will never, ever do that again! End of story!" Stomping out of the galley, she nearly pushed poor Sanji to the ground.

Chopper rushed over to look at Luffy's head. He would be fine, thank goodness, his rubber defenses negating most of Nami's power. Pouting, the captain looked at where Nami had been a moment ago.

"What's her problem? I was just having fun?"

Chopper knew what was wrong. He heard Nami's heart thudding in her chest when she had heard that Luffy had almost gotten himself killed for the third time today.

"She's just worried about you, that's all."

Quality of Life: General wellbeing, including mental status, stress level, and perceived health status

Brook was eighty-eight years old.

That was a long time, but fifty of those years were spent alone on a boat, with no one but skeletons (real, dead skeletons that couldn't move) for company.

Thinking about it too long made Chopper sick.

"How did you do it?" Chopper asked one day, during one of the rare quiet moments on the ship.

From his piano, Brook paused the slow song he was playing. The musician seemed to know what he was talking about, because his skull took on a strange, pensive look.

"I don't know. I suppose it was just like everything else: One day at a time."

Restless Leg: A feeling of unease or restlessness in the legs. Might be relieved by moving or walking

"You piece of shit!"

Chopper ducked under the table as Sanji launched himself at Zoro for no good reason. Beside him, Usopp cowered in fear.

"Holy crap, they're really going to kill each other, aren't they?" Usopp asked, his voice wavering. "This is the fourth time today Sanji's attacked Zoro!"

Chopper didn't say anything, putting his entire effort into reinforcing their position, just in case Nami didn't come and break things up and the skirmish got out of hand.

Secretly he wished for the next island to come up soon. It had been over a week since the cook had really gotten to go all out on someone, and Chopper wasn't sure how much more damage the poor ship could take.

Scar: Marks created during the healing of damaged skin or tissue

Vivi didn't have any. Zoro's and Luffy's were obvious. Sanji's weren't. Usopp's were invisible without the aid of an x-ray.

Nami's was hidden.

It was masterfully done, her tattoo. Unless you were up close or happened to brush against it you wouldn't know there was a scar underneath it at all. Plus it looked pretty, with Chopper thought was nice.

As the newest Straw Hat, he felt awkward about asking about it. As Nami's new doctor, he felt obligated too. Those muscles were important for arm rotation, after all.

The tattoo might just be vanity, but he didn't think so. There was the way Nami touched it when she thought no one was looking…for some reason it made Chopper feel sad.

Maybe, someday when he was a little bit braver, he could gather the courage to ask about the story behind the mark that bothered her so.

Tinnitus: The perception of sound within the ear without external stimuli

Over half the crew suffered from ringing of the ears. It was to be expected when it seemed like they couldn't go a week without being in close proximity from some explosion or other. Chopper expected Robin had the worst of it, her past history and the nature of her Devil Fruit meant her ears had suffered through more damage than the rest.

He couldn't get her to admit it, of course. The one time he had checked her hearing (he also suspected she had the beginnings of a hearing loss) she had passed with flying colors. She left his informatory wearing her all-knowing smile, promising to tell him if she noticed any change.

It wasn't until later Chopper realized she could have used her power to cheat. After thinking about it, he decided to let it go. If Robin wanted his help she would ask for it. Until then, he would just have to keep monitoring the situation and make sure she received the best care possible.

Urticaria: Hives

"Sanji's stir-fry was yummy," Chopper said. Lazily he pulled on his fishing line. "Much better than what Doctorine makes."

"Yuk. I don't eat that stuff," Usopp said, making a face. "When I was a kid, I ate a poison mushroom and now I hate 'em."

"Oh, no, that's terrible! What happened?"

Usopp's eyes squinted and his lips stuck out in distaste. "It was awful. Nothing like the one time I was nearly assassinated by monkey-men, but I broke out in these red, splotchy patches that itched. It was hard to breathe, too."

"Usopp, that means you were allergic, not that it was poison! You could have died!" Chopper exclaimed. "Why didn't you go to a doctor?"

The sharpshooter shifted uncomfortably. "I…how was I supposed to know?" he asked defensively.

Chopper took a breath to say that his parents should have known, but snapped his mouth closed at the last minute. Usopp didn't have any parents around growing up.

"That's right, you wouldn't have," Chopper said softly.

There was a moment of uncomfortable silence; then Usopp grinned. "Hey, did I ever tell you about those monkey-men? It's quite a story."

The sharpshooter dove into his tale with gusto, all feelings of embarrassment and unease forgotten.

Vertigo: A sensation of dizziness or abnormal motion resulting from a disorder of the sense of balance

Vivi was a princess and was very contentious of her position. One did not generally find her so drunk she couldn't find her own feet.

However, as Luffy would remind them all, rules were made to be broken and the day after Crocodile's defeat the kingdom played host to a raucous party.

Which ended in a drinking contest between Straw Hats.

The result was an extremely happy swordsman and a Royal Palace emptied of any and all alcoholic beverages.

"We did it. Crocodile's gone," Vivi slurred, flat on her back. She hiccupped, making Chopper giggle.

"Now if only the room would stop spinning."

Wheeze: A musical or whistling-like noise heard upon respiration caused by obstruction of the airways

"You should really cut down on the number of cigarettes you smoke," Chopper said, pulling away his stethoscope from Sanji's chest. "They're not good for you."

Sanji's single visible eyebrow cocked up, and a lazy smile spread across his face. "Yeah? And you should cut down on the amount of cotton candy you eat, but you don't see me harping on you."

"True, but…"

"We're pirates, Chopper. What's the point of being a pirate if you can't have a few vices?"

X-Ray: A stream of such photons often used for their penetrating power in radiography, radiology, radiotherapy, and scientific research

The micro-fractures made no sense.

Chopper shook as he held up his film. Zoro refused to explain his injuries, leaving the doctor's overactive imagination the task of coming up of a possible explanation. Their fight with Oars shouldn't have hurt him this much and his injuries from Enies Lobby were mostly healed, and even they were never this bad.

Normally Zoro wasn't evasive like this. Normally Zoro was able to give a blow-by-blow account of his battles, meaning Chopper knew exactly where each laceration and contusion came from.

Now…now Chopper was helpless. Zoro was awake, but he wasn't talking. The doctor refused to admit out loud how much this newfound silence hurt. They had a bond, or at least Chopper thought they did. Maybe not, if Zoro couldn't trust him with the truth behind his horrific injuries.

So Chopper sat at his desk, staring at his chart, trying to figure out what in the hell had managed to hurt Zoro so badly.

Y Chromosome: The sex chromosome associated with male characteristics in mammals, not seen in females

"I ain't cryin'!" Franky insisted, dabbing a hankie to his cheeks. "It's just my allergies."

"Sure, sure," Usopp agreed good-naturedly. "Whatever you say, big guy."

"Shut up! I'm a man's man! I don't just…cry," Franky hissed.

"What about the time Robin…?" Chopper began, not able to bring himself to finish the question.

"That does not count!" Franky said empathetically. "Not at all. Have either of you guys had your balls squeezed like that? No. Didn't think so. That was totally not cool."

Usopp and Chopper looked at one another, but didn't disagree. Franky had a point.

Zeitgeber: Any of the mechanisms in nature that keep the biological clocks synchronized with the environment. Can include mealtimes, sunrise, sunset, ect

"Damn it, is he asleep again?" Sanji growled, kicking Zoro lightly in the ribs. "What the hell?"

Zoro cracked an eyelid. "What?" he asked flatly.

"You're in my space, asshole. Go sleep somewhere else, you big lug."

With a smug grin, Zoro settled against the wall. "Nope, can't. Usopp's doing his ammo, the Sea-Witch has watch—"

"How dare you insult Nami!"

"Franky's doing renovations below deck. This is the only place to nap. Deal with it."

Sanji stomped off, swearing up a storm. Chopper peeked his head from around the swordsman.

"Is he gone?" he asked with a yawn. "Or do we have to move?"

"Don't worry about it buddy. Curly'll wake us up for supper. Just get some rest right now."

"Alright." Chopper snuggled in closer and closed his eyes. He was tired, taking care of the Straw Hat Pirates was hard work.

With a grin, he pulled his hat over his eyes. There was no place in the world he would rather be.

AN: I will be perfectly honest, this entire thing came from the random idea of Brook receiving milk introsseously. I swear, my brain is a weird place.

And I acknowledge that some of these terms are not used in their most 'medically appropriate' way, but I don't really care. Thinking about Sanji having restless leg made me laugh.

As always, reviews make me happy.