Train of Thoughts
Zoro was walking around town when he happened to meet Drake. And no, he’s not lost!
“I should ask you what you are doing here, but knowing you, I’d save the question.” Drake did not bother greeting Zoro at all.
“Huh? What is that supposed to mean?” All he got as an answer is a shaking head, making Zoro feels like he’s been insulted somehow.
Drake is a police officer and a friend of his. If anyone thinks that Zoro has no friends outside of SHI, then they’re dead wrong. Sure, he’s not the friendliest guy you can find, but he has good friends.
Zoro met Drake through their passion for Motorbike racing. Watching Motorbike racing is Drake’s hobby. Through Motorbike racing, Zoro also met Kidd, Killer, Bonney, Hawkins, and Law, who is Luffia’s distant cousin. Zoro was just 19 at that time when he met them, and surprisingly, he fits in that group despite being one of the youngest.
“Where are you supposed to go?” Drake asked.
“I was about to buy Luffia’s Takoyaki on my way back… But - ”
Drake can only sigh. There’s no need to further explain why Zoro is in this part of town. It is common knowledge that Zoro is a directionally challenged. He can’t – for the life of him – remember a route. It is a wonder how he can still find his way to finishing line during the race.
“Alright, alright. Come on, I’ll accompany you.” Zoro followed him towards a very familiar parking lot. “Where is Luffia, anyway? I am quite surprised she’s not with you.”
“She’s not always with me.” Zoro countered.
“Not always, but most of the time, she is. If you told me you two live together, I would have believed it.” Drake said. Zoro just remained silent, refusing to say anything at all. “Well, here’s your bike. I trust you’d find your way to your office.”
“I can drive there just fine!”
“Yeah. Yeah. Oh, by the way, there’s going to be a gathering tonight. Make sure to invite Luffia.” When Zoro started hanging out with them, Luffia usually tags along and end up squeezing her way into the group. It’s not surprising given Luffia’s personality.
Driving back to Thousand sunny took about 30 minutes (It’s supposed to be a 15-minute drive). The first thing Zoro did is visit Luffia’s office – who, no doubt is still working at this time. Before Zoro left the building, Nami is standing in Luffia’s office, guarding her. Had Nami not been around, Luffia would have escaped with Zoro, leaving more paper works behind.
He went inside without knocking the door. As soon as Luffia saw him, she immediately jumped in joy, running to Zoro to get her Takoyaki.
This is always a common sight to anyone who knows both Luffia and Zoro. He’d always find time to buy her food no matter where he is. Whenever she tags along, he never forgets to ensure she is well-fed. A cranky and hungry Luffia is hard to deal with, even for him.
“Are you done with the backlogs?” He asked. It’s Sunday afternoon, it’s supposed to be their rest day but Luffia had to finish everything she declined to work on during weekdays.
“Yeah! Nami is so mean!”
“You’re making it sound like I am the bad guy here.” Nami sarcastically said before standing up. “Now that my babysitting duties are done, I’m going to leave. Make sure to lock your office.”
“We will!” Luffia saluted, bidding her goodbye to Nami. Once they’re alone, Zoro brought up the invitation sent by Drake earlier.
“Yes! But where?”
“The usual place.” Their usual place of gathering is one of Kidd’s clubs. It is the biggest club he owns. There is a place reserved for them.
“Okay!” She answered before eating the Takoyaki. She’s been craving for this after getting hangover last night during Rayleigh’s birthday party.
“Is Franky and Usopp going to stay over in the basement?” Zoro asks.
“Yes. They’re still doing a few more tests.”
After Luffia finishes her meal, they decided to get her car in the basement and also bid their goodbye to Franky and Usopp.
Arriving at the club as early as 6:30 PM, they can see people are lined up to get inside. The club usually opens at 7:00 PM, although some people would like to choose the best seats, which likely won’t be available if they come late unless they’re VIPs and made earlier reservations.
The bouncer is quite strict in no entry until it’s opening time. Some people wanted to get inside as early as possible, but the bouncer still did not let them in.
“Opening is at 7:00 PM. Wait till then.” It was Killer, who is the general manager of the clubs who spoke.
Paying no mind to the line, Luffia and Zoro greeted Killer.
“You’re quite early. How many minutes did you take before arriving here?”
“Hmm, 30 minutes from Thousand Sunny Building.” Luffia answered.
“That could have been worse. Had it been Zoro driving, it would take an hour.”
“Oi!” The green-haired man protested. Luffia only laughed before slipping past Killer and getting inside the club while yelling for Jaggy. “Jaggy! Jaggy! Jaggy!”
Zoro and Killer can only sigh. “Go on. Make sure she doesn’t get herself killed. Kidd’s not in the best mood.”
“Since when is he in the best mood, anyway?” Zoro rhetorically asks.
“Probably when Luffia’s not making fun of him.”
“That… I can agree.” Zoro went after Luffia who’s still yelling for Kidd.
The people lined up outside protested why they just let two people in, only to earn a glare from Killer.
Kidd’s busy in his office, typing on his laptop when he heard a particular yell from someone familiar. He can only sigh in annoyance. Here comes the brat.
“JAGGY!” She yelled while slamming the door open, almost causing the painting on the wall to fall to the ground due to the impact.
“How many times do I have to tell you not to slam my door open?!” It’s too early to deal with a hyperactive brat. Kidd expected Zoro and Luffia to be late, not this early. He doesn’t have much energy to spend in dealing with this brat.
“Hahahaha.” And she has the nerve to laugh at him, ignoring his comment before sitting on the couch right in front of his desk. “What’cha doing?”
“Working. And why the hell are you so fucking early? Who let you out without a leash?”
“I have nothing to do! I just finished the paper works in my office.”
“Hey, Kidd!” It was Zoro who arrived next, greeting Kidd. The red-haired man thanked the gods Zoro is here. At least someone can put Luffia in her place when she gets too hyperactive to deal with.
“Jaggy, what happened to your carpet? Why is there damage here?” Luffia noticed the damage on the floor. She must have good eyes to see the little damage the carpet has.
“Incident happened last night.” Kidd is reminded of the woman again. “It was on newspapers and news sites. Didn’t you read anything?”
“Nope!” Figures. Kidd should have figured Luffia does not read the news at all.
“Didn’t know that Orochi is a VIP here.” Zoro commented while helping himself with the vodka that is in Kidd’s cellar.
“Oi! Who told you to get a drink from there?!” Kidd was ignored. Zoro sat on the couch, pouring alcohol on two glasses. One for Kidd and one for himself.
“It’s a pain to go downstairs just to get a drink.” Zoro shrugs. “So, what happened with that bastard? I read the news that he tried to assault a woman.”
“He did. The woman is a reporter, tailing him. He caught her and tried to assault her.”
“What a scumbag!” Luffia commented.
“And who told you to take my food?!” Kidd shouted when he saw Luffia raiding his fridge, taking out whatever she can eat.
“I’m hungry!” Kidd’s stress level is rising, but he should have expected this especially with Luffia around. Why were he friends with this woman again?
It took about 3 hours before the rest of the gang arrived in the club. They chose their favorite spot on the ground floor. It’s in the corner where they can drink in peace. Kidd needed a lot of drinks tonight.
“We’re one of the sponsors for the biggest Motorsport event this year!” Luffia announces. “Zoro and I are going to participate! Also Jaggy!”
“I never agreed to represent your damn company, brat!”
“Isn’t it amazing?!”
“Kidd-ya, just accept that you can’t say no to her.” Law smirks, enjoying the look of annoyance in Kidd’s face.
“It’s gonna be amazing! Jaggy, you better start practicing again. Shishishi.”
“I said I did not agree on participating in your company!”
“Yosh! Bonney! Let’s have a battle!” Luffia continued to ignore Kidd as she challenges Bonney again in their usual battle of who can eat more.
“You could never win against her, could you?” Drake commented, smiling teasingly at Kidd.
“It’s not like you have anything better to do anyway. You might as well race under her banner since it will make it less hassle for you.” Hawkins said while drinking.
Luffia always gets whatever she wants. All of them are getting sucked at her pace.
“By the way Kidd, we got Orochi under investigation. The woman she tried to assault last night provided heavy proof of his illegal activities. He will end up in jail, now that we have progressed that far.” Drake arrived in the club last night when Kidd called him. He placed Orochi and his men under arrest.
“Serves him right.” Kidd said.
“Tashigi is handling all the legal procedures of his arrest this time. This reminds me, why haven’t you introduced Tashigi to everyone else, Zoro. You’ve been together for quite some time now. I never once hear you mentioning her at all.”
The attention of everyone turned to Zoro, except for Luffia and Bonney who disappeared, probably to ask the kitchen personnel to cook more for them.
“You already know her. I don’t see the need to re-introduce her.”
“I know her, yes. But not everyone here met her.” Drake answered. Zoro did not bother to answer at all. What is he going to answer anyway?
“Are you sure you two are dating? It doesn’t feel like you are.” It was Law who said this.
“We are dating.”
“No offense, Zoro, but I don’t feel that you two are dating. Are you sure you really like her that way?” Law is amongst Zoro’s closest friends. They get along fine, probably because they have a similar no-nonsense attitude. They never liked to beat around the bush.
“I like her and we are dating, that’s it!” Zoro is getting pissed off at their comments. It feels like there is a hidden meaning behind their questions and he doesn’t like it.
“Do you like her enough to think of marrying her someday?” Surprisingly, it was Killer who asked this question. Out of all people in their group, Killer is one of the people who usually doesn’t talk about marriage or dating.
His question surprised Zoro and he can’t answer it. He would have answered yes, but he feels like this is not the answer he should be saying. It doesn’t feel right to answer it right away.
Answering no sounds like he’s just proving them right.
“Maybe this is the right time to think it through, Zoro. You can’t just date someone and stay in the relationship when you are not even sure why you are dating them.”
“And since when did you turn into a love guru?” Zoro asks his friends. The flow of the conversation is making him tense. It is stirring up the questions he kept hidden for quite some time now.
“We don’t have to be a love guru to know you just like her as a friend.” Kidd scoffed, bluntly stating his opinions.
“My relationship with Tashigi is none of your damn businesses!” Zoro hissed at all of them. Kidd was about to answer when Luffia and Bonney came back. They must have sensed the tension.
“What is going on here?” Bonney asks, yet none of them answered. They kept their silence. “Oh well. Oi, Kidd. The women there have been looking in this direction. They’ve been glaring at us.”
“Hmm, maybe they want to have some fun?” Law smirks at the women on the dance floor, earning a few winks on his way.
“Someone wants to get laid tonight, huh. Choose your partner well, Law.”
“As if I want to hear that from someone who fucks around.” Law rolled his eyes at Kidd.
“I am busy with work. I haven’t had a chance to find a good partner. Maybe I should do that tonight.”
“Still the playboy, as always, huh? When will you find a decent woman to date, Kidd?” Bonney commented, shaking her head at Kidd.
“He might have found the one, though.”
“Wait, what did you just say Killer?” Everyone can’t believe what Killer just said. They all knew how Kidd doesn’t want to date anyone, or more like, he hasn’t found a decent woman to date.
“Oi, Killer! Don’t just say useless shit!”
“You have to admit, she’s gorgeous and a badass too! It’s rare to see you get riled up by anyone.”
“She’s a pain in the ass!”
“Hold up, who is this woman you’re talking about, Killer?” Bonney is curious. For Kidd to deny a woman like that is something new. Judging by how he reacted, it seems this woman is a good match to Kidd.
“Oh, you should have seen how they argued. It’s a great sight.” Killer still can’t get over what happened last night. “They argued like an old married couple.”
“Fuck, who’s the old married couple? I won’t date someone like her! We’re more likely to kill each other. Didn’t you see it? We hate each other.” Kidd reasoned out.
“But, shouldn’t you start dating seriously now? You’re getting older.” Leave it to Luffia to bluntly tell someone they’re getting older. Not anyone has the guts to tell Kidd that line. All of them laughed at Luffia’s comment, even the stoic Zoro and Hawkins did. Only Kidd cannot laugh at that comment.
“I hate when they get clingy as fuck, acting like they own me or something. I’d rather have a casual partner.”
“Oh, I know! I can hook you up with my sister!”
Zoro and Law looked at Luffia blinking in surprise. Did she just sell her sister out?
“Oi, Luffia! That’s not a good joke.” Law said seriously. He may find the sisters annoying, but he wouldn’t want to see them in a casual fuck buddy relationship with his friend. They’re still his relatives after all.
“You’re not talking about Ann, are you? I may be into brunettes, but I don’t sleep with a friend. Besides, she looks like she’s into Marco Newgate.” Kidd saw them together one time and he knows they’re into each other. Wouldn’t that be shitty if he just gets in the way? Besides, he doesn’t see her that way. She’s a decent woman for keeps.
“She has a crush on him and they’re going on a date. But I am not talking about her though. I’m talking about my other sister, Ann’s twin.”
Oh boy… Law and Zoro facepalmed.
“Wait, twin sister? I didn’t know you have another sister.” This made Kidd curious.
“Do you really want to get Kidd killed?” It is time for Zoro to intervene. He doesn’t like Luffia’s train of thoughts this time. It’s better to put a stop at her ideas before she gets serious. Once serious, Luffia never backs down no matter what. Besides, Zoro knew the sisters’ background, so as Law.
With how overprotective their father is, anyone who dares to date them might end up getting killed. If Roger is not going to kill them, then it would be their grandfather, Monkey D. Garp – a very well-known military officer. If that’s not enough, there’s Sengoku as well who is willing to do anything to protect the sisters. Not just them, there’s many more. Suffice to say, anyone might end up getting killed one way or another.
“What? It might be a good idea!” Luffia insisted, pouting. She was thinking Sab and Kidd fit together. “Besides, she’s single.”
“NO!” Law and Zoro shouted. She scrunched up her face in disappointment.
“Unless you want to have your friend murdered.” Law said.
“Murdered? Isn’t that a bit extreme? Who’s going to murder him anyway?” Drake can’t help but ask.
“Oh, you wouldn’t want to know.” That’s all Law can say.
Everyone is curious why dating these sisters will get anyone killed. Especially Kidd. He knows Luffia is rich as fuck, but from what he knew, she worked her ass off to get where she is now. So as her eldest sister, Ann.
If they have an overprotective family, they might be someone of influence.
“Your grandfather alone will have a fit. We don’t want to deal with an enraged Garp.”
“Did you just say, Garp? As in Monkey D. Garp? He’s your grandfather?” Drake is surprised – or shocked more so.
“Didn’t you notice the family name?” Law asked.
“Well, I noticed, but never thought they’d be directly related. You know what, I can see the reason why anyone who dates you and your sisters will end up getting killed. With a grandfather that crazy, we’d be contacting funeral homes in no time.”
“That’s an exaggeration, don’t you think?” Killer’s been silent all this time, but hearing Drake agreeing with Zoro and Law makes him think getting murdered is true.
“You haven’t seen the man. He’s like a living legend – not just because of his achievements in the military, but on how he trains recruits. There’s a reason why the dropout rate of recruits surged to 80% this year alone.”
“Hahahaha. Grandpa is harsh when he’s training us, but he’s good. He won’t kill anyone we date… Probably.”
After Luffia’s last statement, everyone decided not to dig deeper into the topic. No one wants to know how they will be murdered by a military legend.
They thought of other things to discuss while drinking. Zoro remains quiet for most of the conversation until it’s time to go home.
It’s 30 minutes past 12, they better get home and get some rest. They still have work tomorrow morning.
Luffia dropped Zoro to his house.
“I’ll fetch you tomorrow morning. Your bike’s still in Thousand Sunny Building right?”
“Yeah, thanks. Good night. Drive safely. Don’t over-speed. I don’t want to bail you out of the jail in the middle of the night.”
“Hahaha! I won’t. Bye Zoro!”
As soon as Luffia’s car is out of sight, Zoro decided to get in his home. It’s a simple two-story house that has a garage that can fit his big bike and his car, three rooms, a gym full of sports equipment and his mini-Dojo when practicing kendo.
He decided to take a shower first before going to bed. As soon as his body in under the warm water, he can’t help but think back to the discussion they had.
Are you sure you two are dating? It doesn’t feel like you are…
Are you sure you really like her that way?
Do you like her enough to think of marrying her someday?
Maybe this is the right time to think it through, Zoro. You can’t just date someone and stay in the relationship when you are not even sure why you are dating them.
These words struck him hard. He’s not angry because they brought up such a topic, he’s pissed at himself for not being able to answer as well as he wanted to… And the fact that he didn’t deny anything leaves a bad taste in his mouth.
He’s trying so hard not to think about it. The more he thinks about it – the more he started to agree.
We don’t have to be a love guru to know you just like her as a friend.
He can’t get these words out of his head. It could just be the alcohol that’s messing his train of thoughts, but he knows he’s not drunk.
Why have they started dating? Zoro knows he likes her. She’s been a great companion all this time and they have a lot of similarities. However, is this enough? Are these reasons enough to keep their relationship floating?
Yes, they rarely see each other because of their busy schedules, but what has changed since they met and started dating? Their status? He can’t quite put a finger on it, but something is missing.
With another sigh, Zoro left the shower and decided to just sleep. He’s too tired to think about this anyway.
At the base camp for the Grandline Army, a certain old veteran can’t help but smile. He’s been smiling for quite some time now that it creeps the hell out of his friend.
“Garp, why are you smiling like that?” Sengoku asks. It’s unusual how Garp is in a good mood. Usually, he would invite himself to Sengoku’s office and demand he needs a one-month vacation to spend time with his precious granddaughters. Something about the cute granddaughters missing their grandfather, which Sengoku quickly denies.
“Ah~ I can’t wait to get home and see my granddaughters.”
“They’re not so eager to see you.”
“Hahaha! I just can’t wait.”
Sengoku raised an eyebrow at Garp, suspicious of why Garp is still in a good mood. Last time he checked, Garp spent two weeks on a remote island where one of their camps is located. That camp serves as training grounds for naval soldiers which Garp is in charge of.
There is nothing noteworthy on that island that could have made Garp happy – more than usual, that is.
“Did you head or something? It’s too early for you to be this happy.”
“I’ve realized something when I stayed on that island, Sengoku. I’ve realized something important!” Garp said in a serious manner making Sengoku doubt if this is something related to work or not. Knowing Garp, it’s the latter.
“And that is?”
Garp’s answer made Sengoku blink in surprise.
“Children? What about children?” Sengoku still can’t connect the dots and what children have to do with Garp’s unusually good mood.
“Don’t you realize? We are getting old!”
“Garp, as soon as you reached the age of 60, you are considered old already. Given that we are way past that age, I believe your realization is too late.” What Sengoku said is true. Even though they do not look like their actual physical ages, they are still considered senior citizens.
No one would believe that both of them are almost in their 80′s, especially with how well-built they are. Years of being in the army and frontlines made their body so sturdy. They both look like they are in their 50′s or early 60′s.
“Sengoku, you’re an idiot!” Sengoku almost lost all his rationale upon being called an idiot by someone of a lower rank. Had it been someone else, Sengoku would have fired them, but this is Garp we are talking about. Common sense doesn’t apply to him and they have been together for decades. Ranks won’t work on him. He’d likely to send his boss flying by using his fist than follow the damn rules.
“Can’t you just get to the damn point?!”
“You know how the island I was in had nothing but damn snotty recruits. So, I decided to visit the nearby islands for a week!”
“Oh god, please tell me you abandoned your post again?!” Sengoku shouted.
“Hush! That’s not the main point here.” Garp dismissed Sengoku’s outburst.
“What do you mean not the main point?!” His blood pressure is rising every minute. It’s a wonder his heart is still intact.
“The main point here is that on the island that I visited, there were a lot of children around! They’re orphans, of course. So I - ”
“Wait! Wait! Wait!” Sengoku put a stop to Garp’s main point. He is not liking where his mind is concluding the whole story here. He’s praying that his assumption is wrong. “Garp. Please, for the love of all good things in the world, please tell me you did not kidnap kids again and turn them into recruits.” Garp did that one time, although it is not really considered as kidnapping since the children were willing to be in the military, still, Garp ignored the procedures too many times that he should have been court-martialed.
“Please, I’m too old to be kidnaping brats and train them. Anyways, as I was saying before I was rudely interrupted by you, meeting these children made me realized a lot of things. We’re getting old and my grandchildren are already adults!”
“Uh-huh. And your point?”
“It is time to have great-grandkids!”
“Uh, what was that again?”
“Didn’t you hear me? It’s time we have great-grandkids!”
Sengoku fell silent for a few minutes trying to process what Garp just said.
“Do you realize that you will have great-grandkids only if your granddaughters get married or get pregnant, right? Unless they are going to adopt.”
“Of course I know that! I am not stupid!”
Sengoku was silent again. He can’t process everything at all. He can’t process the fact that the words he is hearing right now are coming from someone he knew for decades, someone who was pointing guns at any men who looked his granddaughters funnily.
Garp, who was conspiring with Roger on how to torture anyone who tries to date his precious granddaughters is now talking about great-grandkids.
“Ann and Sab are already at the right age. Heck, their mother was pregnant around the same time. It is time for them to get married and give me great-grandkids!”
Sengoku feels like he is getting a headache at the conversation.
“Garp, are you saying you want them to start dating and get married?" Sengoku emphasized the words dating and marriage, in hopes that Garp may realize what he is talking about. Most of the time, these are forbidden words to mention in front of Garp. He’ll go on a rampage mode.
“Yes! We are getting old. Who knows when we will die? I want to see my great-grandkids before I die.” Surprisingly, Garp has a point. A legitimate point at last.
“Alright. This is a surprise coming from you. The fact that you are now open to them dating and marrying is quite a surprise. It is good to wish for great-grandchildren, but you have to realize that if they are not dating someone, you can’t force them.”
“Hahahaha! There is nothing to worry about that! I already have prospect husbands for them.”
Sengoku gaped in shock again. It looks like Garp is planning something crazy this time. Sengoku pities the sisters. They are like his granddaughters after all.
“I do not trust that plan of yours, Garp. What are you trying to do?”
“I’ll have to talk to a friend of mine. His son is single and unmarried. I seem to remember that he and Roger signed a deal to marry their firstborns. It’s perfect timing.”
“Wait, wasn’t that a drunken deal?” Sengoku can still remember how Roger and a certain someone got drunk and decided to sign a deal. A deal where they arranged for their firstborns to marry each other.
“What are you saying? A deal is a deal. Ah, I still have that signed document somewhere.”
It looks like Ann will be the first one to taste the crazy idea of their grandfather.
“What if Ann has someone she’s dating right now? You can’t force them apart just because you want that drunken deal to be realized.”
“Of course I won’t! I am not heartless, however, if I deem the man not worthy of my granddaughter, I’ll do anything to get him kicked out of her life.” Ok, this is getting scarier and crazier. Garp is dead serious. “Ah, it looks like I will have to look for Sab’s future husband.”
“And Luffia? Please tell me you are not including her.” Sengoku asks worriedly this time.
“Bah, your favoritism is showing! She’s still young, so she doesn’t have to marry right away. Although, if she chooses to get married to Zoro, I have nothing against it.”
“I love the three of them equally. I am just worried since Luffia’s still young. In any case, make sure not to get killed by their father.”
“Do not worry. I have Rouge on my side this time. Bwahahaha!”
Sengoku can only sigh while looking at a very excited Garp who can’t wait to have great-grandchildren. Maybe Sengoku should message Law and tell him to get married too.