The End

Land Ho!

Once the two reached the door to the main deck, Bo opened it and the two were met by the curious stares of everyone on board. After a minute of silence, Ray was the first to speak, leaning over the wheel on the top deck. "What happened down there?" he asked in an exasperated tone as if just contemplating the answer was tiring.

"I'll tell you later. Right now, where's Rose? He needs to get that wound patched up." Bo managed to rasp out, though pain was evident in his voice, as he pointed a thumb over his shoulder towards Mage.

Ray ignored the evident pain his friend was in as well as the question as he asked, "And who is 'he'?" But before Bo could get a word out, Ray held up his palm to stop him and continued, "Let me guess; he's our new-"

"Aah! G-get away from him, he's a killer." Ray was cut off by Rose's terror- filled shout.

Bo and Ray both looked at her with confused looks as Mage gave a humorless chuckle before saying, "You're the one that gave me this scar.," while motioning towards the scar on his face with his shoulder.

"He attacked this ship earlier." declared Rose as she pointed an accusatory finger at Mage.

Mage just shrugged it off: "Eh, I'm through with that now, though."

At that statement, Rose jumped in Mage's face and began arguing with him. They went back and forth about Mage's past actions until Bo stepped in between and held them apart. "Listen, the past is the past. We're on the same side now and should help each other out." Bo stated, the authority in his voice silencing everyone else.

"I never said I would join you." Rose reminded Bo as she stomped her foot and turned around.

Bo looked at Rose with a softened expression: "Then… as a doctor, can you really just leave him with that wound?"

Rose seemed to be struggling with an internal conflict until she caved and went to help Mage, but she was interrupted by Ray who piped up to ask Bo, "What about you; you look to be in worse shape than him."

Bo looked up to where Ray was, and stated through gritted teeth due to the pain he was feeling, "I'm fine; I'm just bruised..." he paused before finishing "everywhere."

Rose quickly ran to her office to get what she needed to stop the bleeding and sew the wound on Mage's hip closed. As she was leaving, Bo introduced Mage to Ray before looking Mage in the eyes. "I assume you've eaten a Devil's Fruit because of the seastone cuffs; what ability did it give you?"

"It'd be simpler to show you." was the simple response.

Bo smirked as he pulled out the key preparing to unlock Mage's cuffs, but was interrupted by Ray asking if he was sure and the loud protests of Rose, who had just arrived back on deck. Bo looked up and gave them a brief reply- "Relax, he's on our side."- as he looked Mage in the eyes to reinforce his words and to silently warn Mage of what would happen if he tried anything.

Bo then let the keys enter the cuffs and shortly thereafter the cuffs fell to the ground with an audible clank and after briefly rubbing his wrists, which were sore from being stuck in their confines for so long, Mage held his hands down and a mist of light bluish tint emanated from his hands rapidly engulfing the entire deck before suddenly dissipating. The civilians on board just gawked on as Mage used his Devil Fruit ability having never seen something like it, but after a short while Bo finished talking to Mage, whispering, "We'll talk later.", and left so that Rose could treat him.

Rose immediately got to work stopping the bleeding and sewing the wound shut while keeping a wary eye on him, afraid he might try to attack her. She then moved to help Bo, who had affixed himself back to his position atop the front triple cannon. As she worked on him, the falcon from before, which had apparently been sitting on top of the main mast, flew back down and landed on Bo's shoulder. Bo just smiled at the bird and, much to Rose's surprise, started talking to it. She couldn't make out exactly what Bo was saying because he was speaking so low, but shortly after he finished, the large bird flew off of his shoulder and into the distance.

Rose finished up what she could do but pleaded with Bo to come with her to the medical ward because he had at least three broken ribs and fractured bones in his arms as well as swelling and bruising all over.

Bo ignored her at first as he seemed to be meditating and then waved her off saying it could wait before shouting up to the helm at Ray: "Ray turn the ship a bit to the East; we're only about an hour away."

Rose finally ended up settling for giving Bo some medicine that would help alleviate the pain in the short term and by the time she had finished Leon was just stepping out from the doorway with numerous bruises from his role in the skirmish with the monstrous Tank. Rose went to help him, her duty as a doctor outweighing the fear she held of Leon's malicious aura at the moment, but Leon waved her off saying, "I'm fine. Jus' dislocated my shoulder, and I already took care of that."

Rose shrunk back from Leon's insidious grin, but was visibly upset that no one was listening to her. As the doctor, they were supposed to follow her orders on matters regarding health. Seeing this, Ray jumped down from behind the wheel, confident that the ship would maintain course in the calm weather. He stood by Rose, placing a hand on her shoulder to calm her down. "Don't worry, those two are hardheaded about injuries; they always think it can wait or if they can still move it's not too serious." he said in a comforting tone as he crouched beside her. "You two," he said in a stern voice that most people had never heard him use, now talking to Bo and Leon, "this here is our doctor. You will listen to her and do exactly as she says, got it?"

Leon grumbled in response while Bo looked at Ray and said, "I thought I was the captain." but both were quickly silenced by a sharp glare from Ray and got up to move to the medical ward of the ship.

Ray looked down at Rose once again and smiled: "There you go; two obedient patients."

A few minutes later, in the medical room, Rose was busy bandaging her two 'patients'. Leon had actually made it through the fight with only some bruises and a dislocated shoulder, which he had already popped back into place just as he said, so Rose just wrapped some bandages around his shoulder and sent him on his way. Bo, however, was in far worse condition. Rose put a cast on each of his forearms to protect the already fractured and bruised bones, though Bo demanded that he still be able to move his hands and fingers with full range, so the casts looked like extra thick gauntlets on his arms from his wrists to just below the elbow. While she was wrapping bandages around his chest and torso- using extra padding over the broken ribs- Bo asked Rose why she was afraid of Mage if she was the one who gave him the big scar on his face.

"Well since Zoans kinda have a mind of their own and I inherited my Devil Fruit, I can't actually control it." she hesitantly answered, embarrassed by the fact that she couldn't control her own powers. Seeing the look on Bo's face she continued: "It just sort of activates when I'm really scared or really angry and I don't remember what happened at all."

"What about your hybrid form?" Bo asked.

"For some reason. it's difficult for me to willfully tap into my powers, and when I try too hard I usually end up losing control completely." she stammered out her reply, her back almost completely turned to Bo by now, but she was broken out of her self-pity by Bo's voice with an unusually warm tone that she'd only heard from him when he asked her to join his crew.

"What if I helped you to learn to control your ability… and also taught you some moves without it? But, I'm going to warn you now, I'm not the easiest teacher."

Rose turned back around and faced him, tears welling in her eyes. She wiped her face with her arm before speaking, "Really? That'd be wonderful."

"But you'd have to join my crew first." Bo added with a smile, but before Rose could reply they were both flung off balance as the large ship suddenly jerked to the side.

Bo hurried upstairs to see what was happening while Rose stayed behind to put the medical supplies that had been flung across the room back into their proper places.

As Bo arrived on deck, Ray spotted him and anticipating his question stated in an annoyed tone, "Leon over there came up here and slammed the door in such a fashion it caused the steering wheel to turn suddenly, but we're on the right course now." as he jabbed his thumb in Leon's direction.

"Hey, it's not my fault; Mr. Homemaker was supposed to be steering the ship."

Holding up his hands to stop their bickering, Bo asked, "Are we almost to Torenai Kingdom?" When Ray nodded in the affirmative, Bo looked over and saw that he could actually see the outline of the island just over the horizon. Satisfied, he directed his attention to other matters. "Has Tala come back yet?" he asked to no one in particular.

"Yeah; she caught some food and took it to the crow's nest." Ray answered while pointing to where she was, though they couldn't see her at the moment.

Leon, meanwhile, gave an inward chuckle to the idea that a falcon was in the crow's nest. When Bo looked at him, though, he placed a hand on his lightly growling stomach and said, " You need to teach that bird how to share." in an irritated tone.

Bo glared at him for a moment before responding in a more open tone: "You're welcome to go ask her for some?"

"Last time I went near that damn bird, she nearly clawed my eye out." came the irritated response before adding, "She tries it again, I'll kill her."

"You kill her, I'll kill you." Bo replied, his voice now devoid of all previous playfulness or calm.

At this moment, Ray noticed Rose peeking out from behind a door, a hint of fear present in her eyes indicating she entered into the conversation at an inadequate time, though she was obviously trying to hide it. "Relax, they're talking about a bird; you can come out." he beckoned to her.

Bo and Leon followed Ray's line of sight and saw Rose tentatively coming from behind her cover. Figuring out what she may have misunderstood, Bo let out a sharp whistle and Tala flew out from her eating place in the crow's nest, still with a stray piece of flesh in her beak which she quickly gulped down after landing on the cast of Bo's outstretched left arm and Rose saw the same bird from before that had been sitting on Bo's shoulder: a female peregrine falcon standing almost two feet tall with slate grey feathers on its back leading to black wingtips and a dark brown underbelly, but what was most intriguing was the metal covering on the claws, beak and wings making it even more deadly. "This is my pet, a war falcon named Tala." Bo said as he used the back of his fingers to stroke Tala's feathers, his words seemingly breaking Rose out of a trance.

Rose didn't have much time to get familiar with the bird as the ship approached the coast of the island and Ray jumped to the wheel to take over from Mage, who had been steering ever since the incident earlier, and dock the ship at port.

It took some time to line the ship up properly because Ray had never steered a ship of such enormous magnitude. But, once he had and the anchor was dropped, Mage, Bo, Leon, Ray, and Rose stood at the railing looking over the island, a pit forming in Bo's stomach as an uneasy feeling overcame him.

He'd only been to Torenai Kingdom two times before, but he remembered that it was a rich kingdom with a lively atmosphere. But, instead of the crowded streets bustling with noise, merchants, and carefree children, they were greeted by empty streets and chilling silence, the only sound being the wind and the only sights being the tall stone buildings and houses, all with their doors and windows shut. Even the docks were near empty with only a couple of galleon class ships, which mysteriously had no visible sails, sparking even more questions.

Ray held a similar eerie feeling of dread as he looked at the two other ships and as Bo scanned the members of his group, Ray seemed to be the only other one aware of the tension, though Leon was probably grinning because it excited him and Bo couldn't read Mage's stoic demeanor. Rose on the other hand clearly didn't sense the tension as she broke the silence with an energetic, "Let's go!"

"No." stated Bo as he stepped forward and looked at the other four before continuing, "Leon and I will go check things out and talk to the King, the rest of you will stay on the ship. Ray, watch over things here."

"Why can't I go?" whined Rose.

"I don't know what's going on here, and you're not ready for real battle." responded Bo, noting the upset look on Rose's face before she retorted, "Then why not take him?" pointing a finger at Mage, probably just trying to get rid of the person that scared her almost as much as Leon.

Ray then chimed in, "She's right. He would be able to help with potential enemies since you're injured."

"I don't know his hand to hand capabilities. He'll need to prove those to me first." Bo declared before letting out a sharp whistle and adding, "Besides, that's what I have Tala for," just as the bird landed on his shoulder.

After answering any objections, Bo turned to the civilians Ray saved on their home island and gave a warm smile before saying, "Don't worry, we'll find you somewhere you all can start over at." He then turned to Leon, giving a brief "Come on," as he grabbed his bow, strapping it over his chest, and jumped onto the ground below, followed shortly thereafter by Leon.

Unbeknownst to any of them, a lone figure, hiding in the shadows, had been watching the entire scene. It attempted to move closer, in order to keep an eye on the newcomers, and as it spoke, it was clear it was a man: "Wait, they're not Marines. What are they doing here, and on a Marine battleship no less?"

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