Three months...

Three months is how long it took for Ace to finally accept that he was a part of the family and that they would love him unconditionally no matter what. No matter how many Tantrums he threw or no matter how many times he attempted to kill pops, they would always accept him no matter what. Over the three months, he had learned that everyone was much nicer than he portrayed them, and he had started to get along with the people who used to despise him for his attempts.

When it was announced that he would officially join the crew, they all cheered and threw a party for him, something he did not expect but was highly grateful for. They had parted all through the night and partially through the next day until everyone dropped from exhaustion. However, Ace found himself making close friendships and relationships with most of the commanders and his old division that was now welcome on the ship. He had gotten along with Marco the most and Thatch over their pranking habits. He had become one of the younger siblings once more, and he was more than happy to live up to whatever expectations they had of him.

But there was one thing that kept bothering him in the back of his mind, but he could never quite place his finger on it. He thought about it and even asked Marco for advice on what to do, but at the end of the day, he always pushed it to the back of his mind once more.

As Time continued, Ace with hardly bothered by anything at all. He was entirely relaxed on the crew with his new friends and family. Finally, Haruta burst that bubble.

" it seems like there's something following us for the last couple of months... I haven't seen it clearly, but I know it's been following us. Namur was sent to investigate, but every Time he got close, it seemed to disappear." Haruta spoke from the Commander's table. Ace was right next to the table sitting with his new friends while listening " it might be another ship. Still, I'm not sure; it could just be a whale or something following us."

" I'll look into it later." Marco spoke, " right now, I have to deal with some paperwork, but once I'm done, I'll make sure to look around the area."

"We are closing in on one of our Islands. We better make sure that whatever it is isn't dangerous for the Islanders," Izo spoke.

" I'll deal with it," Marco said again before getting up to deal with whatever paperwork he had to deal with.

Furthermore, it was none of Ace's business, so he continued with his own business by discussing his eating habits with his close friend, deuce.

Late at night, the ship rocked a little more than usual. A storm was coming, but they made all the necessary preparations and hardly needed to do anything more. They were in Paradise, so storms there was hardly anything to worry about compared to the new world.

Marco was finishing up some paperwork before going to bed, but just as he was, he heard some knocking. His door was open, so he looked up, expecting to see someone there, but he didn't see anything. He looked confused before turning back to his paperwork, but just as he did, another knocking sound came.

" what is it," he said as he turned around but still didn't see anything. It was silent for several minutes before Marco got up from his seat " do you need anything? Is everything okay" he asked into the darkness of the hallway.

"Who are you talking to, Commander" Michael, one of the on-duty night watch, asked him.

" did you just knock at my door?" Marco asked him

" no... Is everything okay" Michael asked him as he approached him.

" yeah, I'm probably just tired. I should be getting to bed soon," Marco told him as he placed a hand over his head. It was probably the exhaustion that was making him hear things.

" all right then, Commander, good night," Michael spoke before walking away. Marco returned to his room and put away all his paperwork and writing utensils, ensuring everything was in its proper place so it wouldn't spill or fall everywhere in the middle of the storm. He was finishing up when a loud banging Was Heard. He jumped up and opened the door expecting to see someone there, but nobody was there.

All of a sudden, all the other doors of the commanders started to open quickly. They all had panicked looks on their faces as they looked around the hallway, all giving each other confused looks.

" what's going on," Marco asked.

" did you just bang on my door," Vista asked him with a confused look. Everyone started to say the same thing to each other as they accused each other of waking each other up.

" no, it wasn't me... I'd heard knocking for the past couple of minutes, but every Time I answered the door, no one was there... Thatch if it's one of your pranks I'm going to beat the s*** out of you," Marco said as he turned around to glare at the cook.

" I just fell asleep. I don't care," Thatch said " I don't even have my hair up. What makes you think I'll pull a prank now," he said with attitude. He did have a point. He would never leave his bedroom without his hair being in his usual pompadour, not even for a prank.

" commanders, is everything all right," someone from the first division said as they came down the hallway. All the commanders looked over at him, wondering what he was doing.

" Joshua, what are you doing up," Marco asked him.

"Someone was banging on all the doors right now. We thought we were under attack, so we all got up as quickly as possible. What's going on..." the man asked as he looked at all the commanders, who gave him confused looks.

" get everyone back to their rooms. We'll deal with this right now. If you see or hear anything strange, ensure the doors are locked. You don't open the doors for anyone," Marco spoke before turning to the rest of the Commanders. The man from the division just nodded before rushing to tell everyone to go and do as Marco said, " go get pops whatever this is, we'll deal with it now."

" but I need my beauty sleep. I have to get up early, "Thatch snapped

" either get your ass in gear, or I'm going to beat the s*** out of you. Do I make myself clear" Izo spoke with a glare. Thatch look that him before quickly nodding his head and rushing to get pops. Izo was also someone to refrain from messing with in the morning, especially when they still needed to do their makeup or had their morning tea.

All the commanders quickly rushed to the meeting room to see what was happening. Pops, who was in a deep slumber, was woken up by three of his sons wondering if they could meet with him—he attended this meeting.

" what is wrong, my son" he spoke as he sat down at his meeting chair. " usually, none of you would be up this late."

" Pops, I don't know who is pranking us, but please tell them to stop. I got to go to sleep. I have to wake up early to cook everyone's breakfast unless you guys don't want breakfast," Thatch spoke as he looked around the room after speaking with pops. Everyone rolled their eyes at him before turning their attention back to Pops.

" what do you mean my son."

" someone was knocking at our doors a couple of minutes ago waking everyone up. All of the divisions were woken up the same way." Marco spoke.

" Can we get this over with? I'm so tired, and I don't care. Just let me sleep," Haruta said as he laid his head on the table. Marco was about to speak, but before he could be allowed knocking came from the door. It wasn't just hitting, more like banging as the door seemed to Rattle under the fists. Juzo rushed to the door, and when he opened it, he expected someone to be injured or frantic, but there was no one there again. Whitebeard glanced, confused, before looking at his sons, who looked beyond frightened. Juzo looked down the hallway and confirmed that there was no one there. He yelled for someone to respond, but no one did, so he went back into the room, leaving the door partially open. The hallways were still dark because of the quick wake-up call that nobody had time to turn on the lanterns.

" I see what you mean, my son..." Whitebeard said as he used his observation Haki to see if anyone was in the vicinity. He got a glance at someone, but they quickly disappeared as if they were never there before. He looked around again with his observation Haki all around the ship, but he didn't find anything or anyone odd. " I don't see anyone with my observation... Everyone is in their bedroom," Whitebeard spoke as he thought.

" all right, whoever is pranking us, the game's over I want to go to sleep," Thatch spoke " whatever prank you guys are mad about that I pulled I get it I'll stop pranking for a week leave me alone" he rolled his eyes. Just as everyone was looking at him, they heard a giggle. They all turned in the direction the laughter came from but didn't see anything. The only thing they could see was the mirror in the corner of the room.

They all got as they looked at the mirror where the giggling was coming from. Marco quickly got up from his seat to go and investigate, but just as he approached the mirror, the giggling stopped. He looked into the mirror, but he didn't see anything out of the ordinary, nothing behind him or nothing behind the mirror. Thatch was close to having a heart attack as he hid behind Juzo with Haruta.

Marco was about to say something, but then there was a shout from the hallway.

" Commanders, Commanders, come quick," someone from the fifth division yelled. Everyone quickly got up and rushed out of the room to see what was happening. They made it down the 5th division hallway, and just as he did, they saw the fifth division in the hallway trying to get out of their rooms.

" what's going on? What happened," Marco asked as he approached Miguel, who had been the one that called.

"We don't know; some candy started appearing out of nowhere. It just filled up all the rooms," Miguel spoke as he tried to get some sticky substance off him. The candy seemed pink and sticky, but the more they moved around, the harder the candy got on them. Some division members had even been stuck coming out of the room.

" Commanders" someone yelled from the first division. " we have a problem there seems to be some kind of substance coming out of the bathrooms" Marco quickly rushed over to the first division hallway to go and see what was going on with his division ordering the rest of the commanders to figure this out and help whoever was stuck.

As Marco got to the first-division hallway, he could smell some Mochi. As he got closer, the smell got stronger. Finally, he got to the bathroom, where everyone was trying to close the door at the fast-growing Mochi coming out of there. He looked shocked before quickly telling everyone to go out onto the deck.

" what's going on, Marco," Ace said as he came from the second-division hallway. Marco was about to answer him, but before he could, the door for the bathroom burst open, and some of the Mochi came out. Ace looked shocked for a second before he let out a shout. " wait hold on I can explain what's going on just calm down," he yelled before the delicious snack consumed him. Marco was about to go and save him from being suffocated by it, but before he could, he was thrown to the Side. He looked around and found a woman with a long neck holding a sword out. She seemed to glare at him before rushing back into the bathroom and disappearing out of sight. Marco was about to follow after her, but he seemed stuck with the rest of the division by the same candy in the fifth-division hallway before he could. Marco then turned into his Phoenix form, attempting to reach them, but before he could, ice grew on the walls and the ground freezing everyone. It didn't help that some of the divisions had candy on them that instantly froze over.

Marco looked at the bathroom where the Mochi was now retreating to and saw Ace going along with it as he cursed and pleaded with it to let him go so that he could explain.

"Ace!" he yelled as he attempted again to reach him but couldn't because of the Ice Candy and Mochi in the way.

Ace knew instantly what was going on the moment he saw the Mochi. Of course, he hesitated in his reaction, but by the time he was snapping out of it, his brother got a hold of him, not giving him enough time to explain. He tried to cling to the door along with other things that were in the way of the mirror that his brother was pulling him from as he yelled to let him explain what was going on and not to hurt his new family. His brother refused to listen to him and dragged him through the mirror along with his elder Sister, Amande. Who had come out to attack Marco. The moment he was through the mirror world, he was instantly bombarded with Hugs by all of his siblings. Oven and Daifuku had asked him if he was okay, but before he could answer, another sibling would come in and hug him and ask him the same thing, also to be interrupted.

He was starting to get annoyed, but just as he was about to snap at his siblings, he got hugged by his mother.

"Mama," he had called as he hugged her.

"Oh, you had me worried sick. Are you alright, Ace" she asked him as she wiped away tears.

"Mama, don't worry, I'm fine please stop crying," he said as he hugged her. " I'm so sorry for not calling you sooner I completely forgot," he explained.

"What are you talking about from what we heard last time you were being held hostage," Perospero asked.

"We worked everything out...' Ace started. Everyone gave him a confused look before allowing him to continue " we talked it out, and they welcomed me into their crew..."

" Ace..."

" mama please don't get mad I'm so sorry I should have called you Sooner."

"When did this happen... That you got accepted as a member of their crew."

"...two months ago," Ace whispered. He looked up at all his siblings, and they all sent him a glare, but none terrified him more than the look his mother gave him.

" you have been missing for five months. And the only time I ever got a call from you was to tell me that this crew captured you. What you mean to tell me right now is you join them for over 2 months and it never occurred you to call your family," she asked him as he backed away from her. He was about to apologize, but before he could, his mother hug him " you are an idiotic fool. Don't you dare do something as stupid as this. I can't do... do I make myself clear," she said to him as tears fell from her eyes to his shoulder. From behind them, Luffy was there with tears in his eyes, ready to tackle his brother in a hug but to wait for his mother to move. " had us all worried sick about you and you did not occur to you to contact your family who worries about your health. You will be punished for this Ace do I make myself clear"

All Ace could do was nod his head. He didn't know what to say to his mother. He had never seen her cry this much. She clung to him for multiple hours, and at some point, it became a group hug with all his siblings around him. When they finally let him go, he explained that he had to go and explain everything to the crew that had taken him in.

When Ace left the mirror world, he told everyone to calm down and that he could explain everything that was going on. Everyone asked him if he was okay and worried about him as he had disappeared for hours. They all stopped and froze and raised their weapons as more people started to come out of the mirror, shocking the crew members.

The candy, Mochi, and ice retracted once they appeared, and Ace explained everything. Marco was beyond pissed that he forgot to call his family to inform them that he was okay. He took the mother's threat very seriously but seemed to forget as time passed. Ace's mother and siblings also apologized for the infiltration of their ship.

" my mother failed to protect me when I was young. I will not make the same mistake with my children." Ace's mother spoke as she was just about to leave. " if harm was to come to my child while he is under your care I will make sure to castrate you," she said before disappearing through the mirror with her children following. Her head popped up once more as everyone finally calmed down, only to panic when they saw her again. " and Ace," she started.

" yes Mama," he whispered.

" as your punishment he will be taking care of your younger brother for the same amount of time that you were missing," she said before disappearing into the mirror and pushing Luffy out, who instantly clung to his brother who started to complain about having to put his journey on pause.

" wait, mama" Ace tried to reach for her as he whined, but he knew she was long gone. The Whitebeard Pirates looked at him before looking at the younger brother, who looked innocent. By Ace's reaction, they knew it would be a long five months.