After a few minutes of calling, Luffy grinned as he saw his local archaeologist. The woman looking at him peculiarly with the same smile,
"What is it, Luffy-san?"
"I need your help!"
She blinked. It wasn't always that Luffy needed help... ah, nevermind. End that train of thought.
"With what, Luffy-san?"
The boy's grin grew as he placed a stack of papers on her desk, scooting around the wooden thing to squat next to her so his head was just above the desk's surface.
"How do I make a book?"
Now this, Robin was sure Luffy never needed help with. Nevertheless, she flipped through the curious stack of papers before her while explaining... and getting caught in quite an adventure of a world.
"Are you done yet?"
"Are you done yet?"
"Not quite. As you can see, I'm on page 120."
"Are you done yet?"
"May you please get that dictionary on the furthest to the left shelf for me please? There's got to be another word for this."
"Are you done yet?"
"Intriguing. I thought this character would have died from blood loss..."
"Are you done yet?"
"I'll be finished in a while. Why don't you play with Usopp and Chopper?"
Robin giggled at her captain who slouched next to her seat, waiting as patiently as possible for her to finish correcting and refining the manuscript. He had asked her for a total of 259 times so far - any normal person would have been irritated long ago and kicked him out of the library. She, however, found the manuscript to be quite interesting - admittedly too interesting and well-written that she was glad her straw-hatted captain was still here and proving to be still acting himself. Chopper didn't need to know about a suddenly-wants-to-write-good-interesting-stories-w ith-proper-grammatical-skills-foreshadowing-figura tive-language-and-deep-meanings disease. And with this story... she didn't want the disease to be cured if there was even one. She was now a fan already awaiting another.
"Ah, this character is Swordsman-san, isn't it?"
Luffy looked up, jumped up, and read the words her pen was poking at to grin, "Yup! It's Zoro!"
Robin smiled before blinking and then taking all the information before in mind... "Might I ask if this story is about your life, Luffy-san? Just all the character's names different? And stories slightly tweaked?"
And that was when the captain smiled sheepishly, but solemnly, "It is. I wanted to write a book, but didn't know what to write about."
And then, she had a very strong urge to read from the beginning again. With more care. With more interpretation and psychoanalysis. With more love - though she already loved 'Part One' and was now on 'Part Two'. She already finished 'Part One' which could really be a book by itself. The book already making her cry and love and feel and understand and hate - it was a beautiful book about three boys trying to understand the world, trying to exist happily and proudly, and trying to be free.
She placed down her pen to hug him for a moment. He stood surprised, but quickly regained his senses to hug back, accepting her condolences. She was happy that she was given the honor to help her captain fulfill his brother's dreams - to carry his late brother's will.
"I want to see the wide world and use what I saw to write about what I saw!"
"What was his real name?"
She smiled as she remembered seeing a picture of Whitebeard's second division commander - a man she heard from the others to be Luffy's older brother. So his tattoo wasn't a mistake after all. She had suspicions about it since tattoos could be taken off and redone like Nami's. And no real tattoo parlor would have the guts to make a mistake on a pirate's tattoo - or the lack of pride for their art to tarnish art.
So he too was carrying the boy's dreams. If she was Franky, then she'd cry waterfalls now. Still, she cried within, silently, stoically - but they were tears all the same for her captain.
"No, thank you."
She wasn't really sure which one of them started the words of gratitude. Her for being rescued from the world and still alive unlike him. For being able to help her captain in such an emotionally deep manner. Or him for being helped to make the best book ever that his brother would have wanted to write. For being allowed to share his past, live in it for awhile, and saved from it to move on.
But it didn't matter. They exchanged thanks and laughed in the warmth and moved on anyways.
"Are you done yet?"
"With Book One, yes. I'm working on Book Two now."
"Book One, Book Two? I only wrote one book, Robin-"
Robin smiled, "When this main character turns 17 is when Book Two starts. It'll be more interesting that way. And they can be standalones as well. Besides, Book Two isn't quite finished yet. The character has yet to reach the Red Line."
Luffy blinked before laughing in agreement. She smiled before continuing. Reading Nami's logs were interesting. To see her captain's perspective of things was another thing. And like the teen himself, very intriguing.
And new. It was a story with a style that could be argued to be a new invention itself. As expected of her captain. Nothing was really old or the same with him. Just like today when she found out that Luffy could write... legibly (no, she did not just admit that she too didn't think that he could read or write. Such a thing would be a lie).
She was pulled out of the lull of adventure when she heard the soft scratches of writing fill the silent room - one that really no one but her approached because of its status as library. The energetic Straw Hats would never dare go inside - and if they played Hide and Seek inside and accidentally destroyed one of her favorite books (historical script and ancient treasures of script), then she was not sure of what she was going to do to them. But she knew that she would definitely lose her perception between mind and reality, lose control, and accidentally turn Thousand Sunny to a ruin herself.
Thus, it was silent as she liked.
So when she looked up, she was quite surprised that her captain was writing something with a brilliant grin like a child. At her gaze, he looked up as well,
"Are you done yet?"
She smiled and shook her head. It was new to her. Doing something with someone else in this place - especially with her very energetic captain. But she can welcome the change full heartedly if it could stop him from asking the same question every ten seconds.
He pouted, "You always say that~"
"You always ask that. I'll tell you when the books are finished so you can leave for now."
He fell silent with his pout still on. Despite that, he never left. The books meant so much to him and now her as his nakama. They both wanted to see this project through. Kind of like how a mother would always be with her baby - through life, pregnancy, birth, babyhood, and after. They wanted to nurture this dream and watch as they let it fly - no, ascend - high into the heavens where it could reunite with its origin, a boy with a missing tooth in his wide smile and a dream to be free.
Both of them shouted with the delightful feeling of accomplishment. Robin stared at the last line of Book Two - or more like the last paragraphs that held a sense of conclusion. No wonder why Luffy gave it to her as a 'completed' book in the beginning. There was this sensation of fulfillment at the end, even though they had yet to reach the halfway point of their adventure. It was odd how the teen who was so amazing with 'hellos' was also good with 'goodbyes'. When she told him this, he laughed,
"I never say goodbye! That just means the very end with nothing after, right? The final meeting, right? So there can't be a goodbye - there's still Book Three~!"
Book Three... she giggled and burst into exuberant laughter unable to stifle the excitement for the next book - the happiness that her captain who was actually quite good with his tales to stop writing. Then again... she eyed the story that he just finished if that 'done' were anything to go by.
"Can I see it?"
Luffy nodded wildly, eyeing the stack she just finished correcting with much glee. "Yosh! Let's trade~!"
She easily agreed with the idea as she exchanged Book Two with him. Him having already read and checked Book One's corrections while waiting for her. After all, it was much different to correct something as an editor than as the original writer. The editor has to read and reread to make sure that everything made perfect sense - that the story's potential was artfully written, extraordinarily and fully brought out. The writer knows his mind and checks, but misses the occasional mistakes as the writer knows more things about the world than the readers. Editors, being the new readers, can see those moments where things need to be explained. Writers, being the creators, need to check to make sure that the editor didn't delete anything important - whether subtly so or not - and review to make his world align with the new book.
Checks and balances. A cycle of corrections that the writer and editor share, revolving around the centerpiece of the book.
Yes, they were pulled back into the lull of literature as they fell silent to do their jobs again. Robin giggled quietly in mirth. It was so fun, sharing work together. As the last Poneglyph reader of the world, there was no one she could share that research with. No one could ease her workload as an archaeologist. And while, she was content with that due to her love of history and being long-since alone in the field of history…
She could really fall in love with this.
Once everything was finished, there came the decision of what exactly to call the books. Between her macabre naming sense - which really didn't suit the books of dreams - and his random naming sense - which really didn't suit anything... they were certainly both stumped. Though she did find out why her captain used three animals as a name.
"Datte - people need a first name, middle name, and last name, right?"
She paused, but gave a nod anyways. Not mentioning how most people don't have middle names and orphans didn't know their last names.
"And people normally name things after things that are related, riiiiight~?"
In a way, it was true. Like naming a dog 'Spot' for the spot on its fur. Or Shiro or any other color. Name children with a meaning related to what the parents aspire their children to be. Etc. So she nodded. And Luffy nodded sophisticatedly before grinning and breaking his philosophical look,
"So I name them after three similar animals!"
"..." At that moment, Robin knew she never thought her captain was as cute as he was now before. She couldn't help but giggle at his logic - which always seemed to make sense in some twisted but funny way. While she broke down, Luffy pouted and whined about how his idea was smart.
She was too shaky from the eruption of giggles to tell him that she actually thought so too.
When everything was finally finalized, the two had their own secret celebration. She was actually quite shocked that the innocent minor could hold his alcohol - perhaps even better than their local drunk swordsman and cat burglar.
And then, they both went back to their normal lives - Robin mentally smirking at the incredulous glances towards Luffy when after one full day of silence for the ship and one lockdown of the library, Luffy left the library and began daily activities as if such a day never happened. Even Sanji was surprised more than jealous that he spent time alone with Robin doing who knows what - though that quickly changed for irritated when the captain insisted that he should make up for the five meals he missed all day.
To Sanji's horror, Robin smiled as she did too, encouraging the loudly laughing Luffy. And subsequently, the loudly laughing Brook who shared in their mirth though did not know the reason for it.
Nami muttered something about worry for Luffy being wasted and how she missed the silence. Zoro muttered something about the sea witch was being a tsundere. And Chopper muttered something about certain diseases that made people quiet as his stare examined the captain's body from afar.
When the money came in bags and birds carrying them, Brook was the first to find out. Nami was the first to run up and touch them. Everyone came afterwards, gaping at the scene... though were suspicious of it as well since money - especially that much - didn't come out of nowhere. Robin was the one who read the bird's letter before thanking the bird and after watching them fly away... helping Luffy toss a total of 11 bulking bags of Beri into the ocean. It was also Robin who gently pried the last bag from Nami's unconsciously strong grip to roughly throw that one into the ocean as well. The crew stared at them even more incredulously. Even Zoro's jaw dropped down. Though Robin suspected it was because he could have gotten rid of his debt to Nami all at once with that money.
"W-what are you doing?!" yelled Nami as she stared at her precious, "T-the money..."
Luffy looked down, noticing that the money bags were still alive and floating before blinking and placing fist in palm in realization, "Ah, sou ka - Robin! Fire."
Robin already got one of Usopp's specialties and threw the flame bomb at the bags in the water, having noticed the bags earlier. She had a feeling that she needed her more pyromaniac side for this. Birds were quite efficient in delivering letters and money bags, even if they were wet. "Aye aye, Luffy-san."
They both watched the fire roar and burn through the paper money with calm smiles, giving each other sound high-fives once the action was over. Robin hummed,
"That's enough fire to kill a mob of people."
Luffy grinned, "Nishishishi, let's promote the book! A bigger fire could reach the heavens~"
Robin smirked with a nod, "I'll think of something."
"R-robin...s-swan..." Sanji stuttered. "YOU'RE SOOO BEAUTIFUL EVEN WHEN EVIL!"
"OI!" Usopp whacked him on the head, "That's not the point! Why'd you burn the money?! There's got to be thousands - millions in there!"
Nami echoed in depression as she fell to the ground, colorless in depression, "Millions... burned... gone... destroyed... my precious..."
Chopper's eyes however sparkled, "Heavens? Really?! Do you really think that could reach the heavens?!"
Franky was unsure of how to comment while Brook was still comically gaping. Zoro, though curious, did not question his captain's actions.
Robin nodded to Chopper, "Perhaps. We can always try for the next deposit."
Chopper was in full awe, "Next deposit - there'll be more money?!"
Nami immediately perked up and walked closer to Luffy to smack some common sense in him to not destroy the money next time - not even taking one step closer when Luffy gave a serious look and shouted,
"Captain's order. Whoever finds the next deposits will burn the money."
"Wh-WHY?!" Nami sputtered.
Robin smiled in full agreement, "Luffy-san's money. Luffy-san can use it for whatever he wants~"
Usopp stared, "Your money, Luffy? Your-"
"YUP~!" He even gave a victory sign. Nami's eyes turned to Beri,
"I wrote a book!"
There was total silence as everyone finally understood why he was in the library with Robin that day. Where better to write a book? Who better to edit. But...
"Luffy... wrote a book?!"
They turned to Robin, who nodded with newfound respect in her eyes, "It was a very good book. And there's a reason why we burned the money, Navigator-san." She turned to Luffy. "Luffy-san..."
Luffy nodded before explaining about his foster older brother's story and dream. Which made Franky, Chopper, Brook, and Usopp burst into full-on tears and fully agree to burn the next bags of cash. And made Nami grumble a reluctant promise but teared as well at how Luffy was carrying on his older brother's will and despite everything, fulfill it. Sanji and Zoro themselves respecting their captain a lot more.
Robin smiled at Nami though, "We can keep the other books' money though, Luffy-san. Sabo's story was that book's. Our story were our own."
Luffy pondered for a bit before nodding, "Nishishishi, alright! I'll leave it to you then, Robin, Nami~"
Nami looked at the older woman like she was her savior, engulfing Robin in a big hug and crying tears of joy. As well as more tears of sadness for the death of Sabo now that her money was taken care of. Robin smiled as she raised the letter to point out, "This book is the only one we have to burn the money of."
They glanced at the name, reading aloud, "ASL by Dreamcatcher."
Luffy hopped on his feet up and down like an excited dog, "Yup! Robin chose that name! It's good right~"
"Luffy-san's like a Dreamcatcher so it fits, right?"
They observed their captain before agreeing with the woman. He certainly stopped all the bad dreams and helped them with their own dreams. Luffy was the reason why they even still believed in them and had fun everyday.
Sanji commented, "Then what's ASL?"
Zoro scoffed, "Dumbass."
"Like you know you shitty swordsman!"
"It's obviously Ace Sabo Luffy, stupid lovecook. You can't get any clearer than that!"
Yet they still fought. The others wondered how he figured that out so fast... but then the swordsman was always on the same wavelength as his captain.
Luffy stared at the sky. A clear blue. Robin patted his shoulder, "He definitely received it. His money - the worth of one book of dreams and the world."
"...yeah." And then his smile grew to a face-splitting grin, "Yosh! Let's party!"
A/N: Found this while cleaning my desktop. Found it a bit sweet. Though I don't remember why I made Luffy a surprisingly talented writer. Maybe because he had to have learned storytelling sometime with all his listening to interesting tales probably even before Shanks came along into his life, the thought that maybe deep down in Luffy's rubber brain his brain actually works when he concentrates and uses it (you know. brain uses electricity for the nerves. rubber, insulator haha), Luffy's spontaneous creativity, and someone just had to have carried Sabo's dream. Sure, Ace carries Sabo's will with the tattoo on his arm across the oceans and around the world... but who carries Sabo's will through his dream to write a book?
Well, anyways, I'm leaving to delete more files. By the way, if you're following my few other stories, just know I'm not writing anymore. I have a dream of my own that I want to do. Sorry. I know, but really. I mean this apology because I know how much it sucks to like an abandoned story.