Hey everyone!

It's been a little bit, I know, but I've been taking classes this summer and it has taken up pretty much all of my time in the past month. I'm still writing when I can but updates might be a little sparse until I find myself with more free time. That aside, it was really nice to be able to sit down and get this one finished out. I really don't like to keep you guys waiting as much as the opposite may seem true sometimes.

I won't say much more than that because I know you probably just want to read, lol. So, as always, I appreciate everyone who's stuck around this far and if you've got anything to say, I'd love to hear what you think.

Chapter 53: Giants Near and Giants Far


Zoro passed through a line of trees and expected to find the source of the ringing but he instead stepped out into an empty clearing… What the hell?… Hadn't he been walking directly toward it?…

"Over here, idiot.", Sanji scoffed toward the verdet's back, turning away before he could see the scowl the words brought to his crew mate's face. His black boots carried him into another clearing and his eyes were met with a strange sight. Was that a building?… He glanced around the area for a moment but the only thing he could find that felt out of place was the small white hut in front of him.

"What the hell is that?", Zoro asked aloud as he stepped beside the blond.

The chef scoffed again before resuming his steps toward the strange dwelling, "A house, obviously.".

The swordsman grit his teeth at the insult hidden in his tone. "I know that damn it.", he growled, making to follow the cook's lead, "I meant why is it here?".

Sanji stared at the hut for a moment before shrugging his shoulders and continuing forward, "No time like the present to find out.". As the door was pushed open, the hinges made almost no sound. He found that to be strange but the Den Den Mushi rang once again and the thought was pushed to the side.

The inside of the white hut was quite barren for what the two thought to be a dwelling of some sort. However, it was curious, the few furnishings there all seemed to be made of the same material as the structure itself.

"What the hell is this place?", Zoro questioned, more to himself than anything. He'd never seen anything like it. His eyes scanned for a moment longer before they widened and shot to where the Den Den Mushi was, its ringing suddenly stopping to signal someone had answered.


"You've reached the Shit Cafe, how can we make your day just a little shittier?", Sanji greeted into the mouthpiece held to his lips. He caught the swordsman's widened eyes and scoffed, waving him away as he turned to look out of the small window to his left.

A masculine growl with a certain huskiness to it sounded on the other end of the line, "Knock it off, Mr. Three. I don't have time for your shit.".

The chef's eyebrows rose when he heard the name but he didn't miss a beat, "I'm afraid there's no Mr. Three working today, sir. Is there anything I could do to help you in his stead?".

Another growl came from the snail's mouth before it suddenly stopped as if the figure on the other end of the line was thinking. After a long moment of silence, the voice came through once more, "… Who the hell am I talking to?".

Sanji thought for a moment on what name to give and something quite clever came to mind, a small smirk rising to his lips before he replied, "You can just call me, Mr. Prince.

"More like Shit Prince.", Zoro mumbled quietly as he once again began glancing about the room.

A tick mark formed on the chef's head but he ignored the comment and took a deep breath, "Can I assume this to be Mr. Zero?". He waited for a reply but when one didn't come he decided to see how far he could push the man on the other end, "Or should I say… Sir Crocodile?".

Sanji went to continue but stopped when the call suddenly ended, static sounding through the mouth of the large snail. He sighed and hung up the Den Den Mushi, thinking on the small bit of new info they'd acquired. This Mr. Three, whoever he was, was probably somewhere on the island. Why? He hadn't a clue… Actually, now that he thought about it, he probably should have just pretended to be him… Well, hindsight's twenty-twenty and all that…

"Done talking to your boyfriend?", the verdet jabbed, a smug look rising to his face at the clenching of the cook's jaw, "Aww. Did I hit a nerve?".

"SHUT UP YOU SHITTY PIECE OF GRASS!", Sanji yelled with shark teeth, uncaring of the fact that his voice could probably be heard through the surrounding forest, "I DON'T HAVE A DAMN BOYFRIEND.".

Zoro only crossed his arms and turned away, the corners of his lips turning upward into a smirk as he made his way back to the door, "Seems like someone's a little defensive.".

A growl erupted from the chef's throat and his black boot dug into the strange white material at his feet. However, just when he went to launch himself at Mosshead's back, the echo of a familiar roar stopped him in place…

The two looked at each other for a moment, the same thought passing through both of their heads in the silence... Was that Levi?

"Try to be a little quieter, ladies.", Ms. Sun advised, uncrossing her arms at the tentative nods from her two companions. Pink flower petals burst into the air and she held her finger up to her lips, using her other hand to point into the clearing, "Unless you want him to hear us.".

Nami's vision shifted to see what she was referring to and her arms involuntarily tightened around Vivi's middle. "I- Is that… A giant?", she whispered unbelievingly.

The princess's eyes widened, her fingers gripping Karoo's large feathers almost as tightly as Nami was gripping her. She tried to form words in her frozen state but couldn't seem to find the willpower, gaze firmly locked on the massive figure sitting just beyond the tree line.

"I believe you would be correct in that assumption.", Ms. Sun answered in an equally quiet whisper. Her eyes drank in the sight of something she hadn't seen since she was a little girl and she couldn't help but compare him to Saul. The closer she looked the more she realized that they weren't all that much alike but just the fact that she was seeing another giant was enough to make her think of him.

A massive boom erupted through the air and brought the woman out of her thoughts in an instant, head shifting up to the sky. She'd seen a volcano looking down on them while they traversed the island but she hadn't known it was active… She nodded to the other two girls, both of them seemingly coming to the same conclusion she had. However, just as the echoes from the explosion began to fade, something else grabbed their attention and they all took an involuntary step back.

"Ah, so it's finally time!".

Vivi gasped at the loud voice, immediately covering her mouth with her hand. She watched wide-eyed as the giant stood to his feet and desperately hoped she hadn't alerted him to their presence.

"It's so your fault if we die.", Nami whispered angrily into the princess's ear. However, it seemed her words were unnecessary because as soon as the giant had gathered his weapon and equipped his shield, he turned in the complete opposite direction.

"Today's the day, Dorry! Today's the day our duel finally ends!".

The exclamation was followed by the sound of booming footsteps and two of the girls, plus Karoo, let out a large sigh of relief when they saw his form beginning to shrink.

"Well, that was certainly frightening.", Ms. Sun said plainly, watching the large man intently from the cover of the trees for a moment before turning to the other three, "I thought for sure he was going to smash us all into little bloody puddles.".

"DON'T SAY STUFF LIKE THAT, IT'S SCARY!", Nami and Vivi yelled in tandem, their teeth turning to those of a shark.

The sight got a small giggle out of the black-haired woman and she let them die out before looking at the two of them expectantly, "Still don't believe me about how dangerous this place is?". When the words got no response other than some small shivers, she nodded and turned back to the clearing.

"What the hell is a giant doing here?", Nami asked aloud, disbelief still coloring her voice slightly. She unhooked her arms from Vivi's middle and slipped off of Karoo's back, feet landing back on the vibrant green grass. "And did he say duel?", she added before making in Ms. Sun's direction.

Just when the black-haired woman went to reply, instead, her arm came up to stop the orangette from moving any further. She paid no heed to the curious glance the girl shot her and crossed her arms, eyes closing when she turned to the forest to their right. "Fleur.", she whispered quietly.

Nami and Vivi tensed, both expecting hands to sprout from their bodies, but nothing of the sort happened. Actually… Nothing happened.

A long moment passed before Ms. Sun's eyes reopened and she turned to her companions, arms still crossed in front of her, "It seems as if we weren't the only ones peeping on our large friend.".

"What do you mean?", Nami whispered, eyes now shooting through the forest. For the life of her, she couldn't see anything through the dense packing of wide trunks. So, what was Ms. Sun talking about?

The woman's mind was working overtime as she thought about what to do, completely ignoring the question from the orangette. She'd already thought of a few things she COULD do but the hard part was figuring out what the RIGHT thing to do was. Well… Right for her, anyway. She looked over at her companions and thought for a moment, once again ignoring the orange-haired girl trying to get her attention.

"Hellooo?", Nami said, waving a hand in front of the bounty hunter's thousand-yard stare. Why the hell was she acting so weird?

Ms. Sun knocked the girl's hand away and disregarded her small yelp, grabbing her softly by the wrist. "I'll be frank with you, ladies.", she said, bringing them into a small circle. She looked to Nami, "I'm tempted to just give the both of you up.". The two stared at her in bewilderment and Vivi went to say something but she stopped her. Could she have told them to run? Yes. Could she have given them up? Yes. There were so many other things she could have done and, yet, this was the path she'd chosen. Why?… Honestly, she wasn't really sure herself. Maybe… Maybe it just seemed like the most fun.

"Mr. Three and Ms. Goldenweek are here for that giant that just walked off.", the woman explained, continuing before the shock could truly hit the other two, "So, with that being said.". She looked between them and smiled to herself, eyes landing on Nami, "Since I'm technically still your prisoner. I think I'll let you choose how we proceed.".

The orangette stared at her wide-eyed and confused. What the hell was she talking about?

"That's not good…", Vivi said, gaze glued to the black-haired woman. What was going on?… Why hadn't she just given them up the moment she knew they were there? She was Ms. All Sunday, second in command of the organization that was single-handedly ripping her country apart. She was supposed to be nothing but evil, just like the rest of Baroque Works… Right?

A silence rolled over them as the words were processed but eventually, it was broken by Nami. "Yeah… We're leaving.", she ordered, a defensiveness entering her posture as she turned to look at Ms. Sun. "Let's not pretend that we've got any chance against you with that devil fruit of yours.", she said honestly, slowly stepping back toward Karoo. "So, I hate to ask but…", she reached into the duck's saddle bag and pulled out a length of rope before facing her once again, "… Would you mind?".

Zoro and Sanji dashed through the forest with reckless abandon cutting down anything that stood in their way whether it was living or not. Nothing else mattered besides getting back to the coast. The Merry could be in trouble. Yet another roar came from the direction they were traveling and their speeds somehow increased even further. The tree line was suddenly in view and, without a skip in their steps, they shot out of the surrounding forest just in time to see an explosion rock the waters not fifty yards from their ship.

The sound of Levi's violent splashes rolled over the pair as they hit the beach and they immediately caught sight of his form sailing through the air, maw wide open as he descended toward the small craft. Another explosion suddenly consumed their vision and something like a hiss of pain erupted from the beast's mouth, large body careening off to the side.

"Levi!", the two boys yelled in tandem, both of their jaws clenching in anger while they watched him crash into the ocean. Zoro ripped Kitetsu from its sheath just as the chef next to him rocketed from the beach, sand exploding around his ascending form. "I'm sinking that thing!", he growled up to Sanji, "Make sure they don't drown!". It took mere moments for the verdet to raise his sword over his head and, by that time, the chef's body was already beginning to descend.

Sanji scowled in the other boy's direction, "Don't tell me what to do, dumbass!".

"Too late for that.", Zoro's frown morphed into a bestial grin as his blade slashed downward, eyes seeming to glow purple in the light of the flying slash that left its razor-sharp edge, "I think me and ole booger boy need to have another chat.".

Sanji dropped through the air like a missile but he could already tell that he'd been beaten to the punch. He scowled to himself at the thought, his smoking foot cooling when he realized he'd be going with Mosshead's plan after all… Just as a vertical slash of purple light sheared through the center of his target, a humanoid form flashed by his face and startled him… Were those lemons?… He smashed into the deck and straight through to the water underneath before he got the chance to look again.

However, as soon as the chef entered the ocean he couldn't bring himself to think about anything besides his impending doom, paling when he realized where Levi had gotten off to after he'd taken that hit…

Zoro's eyes followed the woman floating above her already sunken boat and huffed in irritation, "Damn Devil Fruits.". Kitetsu rose again but when he went to send another flying slash in her direction, Levi's deafening roar stopped him. He watched the water give birth to the beast's massive open jaws in morbid fascination and could have sworn he saw a patch of blond somewhere amongst the wreckage inside…

The sea creature overtook the woman in an instant and the verdet had to stop himself from laughing at the comical image of her realizing what was about to happen just as Levi's mouth snapped shut on top of her.

A large splash followed the beast's landing back in the ocean and Zoro could only stare blankly as he submerged again. A moment passed while he waited for the cook to emerge from the still-rocking waves but he never came… Another moment. Nothing. Another. Nothing… Certainly, Levi hadn't… Right? The thought immediately sent his held-back laughter escaping from his lips.

"Eaten by your captain's pet!", the swordsman wheezed, "What a way for the Shit Prince to go out!".

"Alright.", Nami sighed in exasperation, breaking the long silence that'd consumed the group since they'd begun their trek back through the forest, "I can't take it anymore. I gotta know.". She turned toward Ms. Sun and eyed her questioningly, "Why'd you do that back there?".

The black-haired woman smiled softly at her bluntness, "Whatever could you mean, Nami?". She winked at her before lifting her tied hands and wiggling her fingers, "I'm your prisoner, remember?".

The orangette groaned into the air, "You know that's not what I want to hear.". She turned to look over at Vivi and shrugged, "I think that's all we're gonna get, Princess.".

The blue-haired girl suddenly growled in irritation and glared at Ms. Sun, "You make no sense and it's driving me insane!". She jumped off of Karoo and stepped in front of the woman, stopping the group in its tracks. "You've been nothing but infuriatingly nice the whole time we've been together! That part I could chalk up to acting, but that?", she said pointing back to where they'd come from, "I can't see why you would do that!".

Vivi waited for the woman to say something but no reply ever came, so she continued her tirade, "I know you could have been lying but… It just didn't feel that way.". Her head drooped like she'd somehow been defeated by the silence, "How can I hate you if I feel like you somehow just saved me?". More quiet met her words as she stared down at her feet, "And if it's not all an act, if this is the real you… Then how can you willingly work for Crocodile when you know what it is he's doing?".

"Let me ask you a question, Vivi.", Ms. Sun said, stepping around the girl and getting the group moving again, "Why is it that you decided to join Baroque Works?".

The princess shook her bewilderment away and hopped back onto Karoo, Nami jumping up behind her. "It was for my country.", she stated proudly, wondering where this line of thought could lead to.

"So, you had a personal reason for joining, yes?", the black-haired woman queried. She received a tentative nod in return and continued, "I also had a personal reason for joining… Well, a few, but personal nonetheless.". She glanced over her shoulder at the two intently listening and sighed before facing forward again, "I think the difference between the two of us, Princess, is quite simple. I am very selfish. And you are very not.".

Ms. Sun could feel her start to ask a question so she stopped the princess with more of her own words, "I may not be the monster you think I am, Vivi, but as long as I get what I want out of working for Crocodile, I'm quite uncaring of what happens as a result of that.".

Nami laughed aloud at the words and it seemed to startle the girl in front of her. "You sound like a pirate, Ms. Sun.", she giggled, ignoring the scowl Vivi was sending her. She knew an argument was coming and really didn't feel like listening to the princess go on about morality and whatnot.

The black-haired woman sent a smirk at the giggling girl from over her shoulder, "Is that an offer to join your crew?".

Her laughter petered out and the orangette shrugged apologetically, "Afraid I can't do much for you there, sis. That's Luffy's choice at the end of the day. Best I can do is put in a good word.".

The response got a small laugh from Ms. Sun, "I just might have to take you up on that. I can't lie, I've been enjoying myself quite a bit so far.". It wasn't a serious answer but she couldn't say it wasn't at least partially truthful…

A loud boom echoed across the tops of the trees and startled the group from their conversation, heads snapping in the direction it'd come from.

It took Ms. Sun a moment of listening to the subsequent booms, sounding at abnormal intervals, to figure out what they were hearing. "I guess our giant friend must have found his dueling partner.", she mused, grabbing the rest of the group's attention. She waved them to follow as she started to traverse the now rumbling ground once again, "I don't know where it is you wanted to go but we won't get there by standing around.".

The words snapped Nami out of her stupor and she sent the woman a nod. She was right, they needed to get moving. The orangette nudged the girl in front of her and she, in turn, nudged Karoo to get them back on track, his quick steps easily pushing them to Ms. Sun's side. "We're heading back to the ship to wait for one of the boys.", she said authoritatively, steering them toward where she thought they'd docked the Merry. With Luffy being Luffy, she didn't expect to see him or Usopp any time soon so she figured they'd probably be waiting on Zoro or Sanji.

A comfortable silence consumed the girls as they walked cautiously through the still-shaking forest. Various animals gave them a few scares along the way, especially due to their size, but none seemed interested in their little group. It looked like they only wanted to get as far as they could from the two clashing titans in the opposite direction. Other than their few run-ins with the local fauna, not much else slowed their progress and they eventually came upon a tree line with what looked like ocean on the other side of it.

Before any of the girls could get a word out to their companions, the splashing of water and what sounded like deep irritated growls met their ears and they stopped for a moment, looking at each other.

Nami slowly slid off Karoo's back and edged her way to the opening in the trees, eyes scanning for any clue as to what was happening down below. She snuck behind one of the large trees and peeked her head out before almost immediately letting out a sigh of relief at what met her sight. With a small smile, she stepped out into the light and her hand rose in greeting, "Zoro!".

The swordsman whipped around at the call of his name and his laughter immediately ceased, now narrowed gaze landing on a familiar face. He huffed lightly and sheathed his sword. "Witch.", he replied, waving a hand over his shoulder.

The orangette scoffed at the nickname. Was he ever going to stop calling her that?… She shook her head and waved the other three in her direction, making to lead them down to the beach, "It's just the boys.". A sharp intake of breath had her eyes turning back to find Sanji rising out of the water carrying… People?… Where had they come from?… Were they dead?... Knowing Zoro, there was a decent chance they were… Also, besides the obviously soaking clothes, why did he look so disheveled?…

Sanji stepped onto the beach and scowled in irritation, turning back to the ocean, "No food for a week, Levi! You're on your own!". He smiled devilishly at the moan of distress that came from the creature and turned away without another word. That'll teach the bastard.

With his anger mostly stifled for the moment the chef took a deep breath and smiled up at the girls he could now see walking in their direction, "It's wonderful to see you ladies so soon.". He unceremoniously dropped the man under his arm into the sand before carefully lifting the woman hanging on his back and setting her down next to her partner.

"And here I was hoping Levi had really eaten you.", Zoro sighed, laughing as he ducked under the leg that flashed toward his face.

"Everything alright down here?", Nami asked curiously. The other three filed in beside her and a gasp coming from Vivi caught her attention, "What's up, Vivi?".

"That's Mr. Five and Ms. Valentine!", the princess exclaimed in shock. What were those two doing there? Had they followed them?… Even after what'd happened on Whiskey Peak? She took a closer look at Mr. Five and could see that he wasn't quite all the way healed from his run-in with Luffy.

"It's getting pretty lively around here.", Ms. Sun mused from Nami's left, "First Mr. Three and Ms. Goldenweek, and now these two… Not to mention the giant and whoever he's dueling.".

Zoro and Sanji looked at each other for a moment before looking back and staring at the woman blankly, "… Giant?".

"AND IT ALL COMES DOWN TO THIS FOLKS!", Luffy exclaimed, shooting through the battlefield to give himself a better view of the fight, "RED GUY VS. BLUE GUY. WHO. WILL. BE. VICTORIOUS?!". He shot upward just as the red giant slashed his massive axe downward. "IT'S A HUGE BLOW FROM RED GUY, JUST BARELY DEFLECTED BY BLUE GUY'S SHIELD!", he screamed in excitement shooting into a dive just in time to watch the massive axe careen into the forest below.

"IT LOOKS LIKE A COUNTER, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN!", the pirate captain announced as loud as he could. Hopefully, Usopp could hear… The blue-cloaked giant shoved his shield outward, throwing his opponent off balance for a moment, before taking a large step into the red giant's guard and thrusting forward.

"BLUE GUY HAS A CHANCE AT ENDING THINGS WITH ONE FINAL PUSH! IS THIS THE END WE'VE BEEN WAITING FOR?!", Luffy yelled, leg shooting out to the side. He was so focused on catching what he thought was the end of the incredible duel that he hadn't noticed he was actually falling instead of rising like he'd intended. It'd been so long since he misfired that he didn't even realize he had until it was too late. His eyes widened when they were met with the tops of the trees and he quickly enhanced as much of himself as he could in the split second he had.

The tearing and cracking of branches lit the forest grounds as Luffy's body felled several large trees before it careened into the earth with a loud crack emanating from the impact. He groaned from his place in the small crater he'd created and rubbed the back of his head while trying to sit up… That was never fun… Just as his upper half was vertical once more, two resounding booms made his eyes shoot in the direction he'd come from and his heart dropped. "Damn it!", he moaned in annoyance, rising from the ground and dusting himself off, "I missed the end.".


The voice made the straw-hatted teen turn and he caught his sniper with his hands cupped around his mouth as he walked through the forest in search of him. "Over here, Usopp.", he shouted, waving the other boy in his direction.

Usopp jumped at the words but rushed over almost immediately, excitement very obviously on his face, "That was amazing, Luffy! It felt like I was really there!". He skidded to a stop and opened his notebook, pointing to it as if it were the most precious thing on the planet, "I got it all and it's gonna be one of my best stories yet!".

Luffy laughed aloud and patted his friend on the back, "Thanks, Usopp! Glad I could help out! Plus, it was really fun!". He'd thought it a weird request at first but ended up really getting into it! He stopped beside the long-nosed teen and nodded in the direction of the battlefield, "Did you get to see how it ended?".

Usopp sighed as they began to walk their way back through the forest, "It was a draw.". He hadn't seen exactly how it happened, but just after Luffy had fallen from the sky both giants crashed to the ground. "I didn't have a good enough view to really see it but they definitely both went down at the same time.", he explained disappointedly.

The pirate captain shrugged and a thought sent excitement shooting through him, "Well, since they're both still around, maybe I'll get to fight both of 'em!". The line of thinking continued and his eyes suddenly glowed with mirth, "Maybe I can even get 'em to join the crew!". Usopp yelped when he suddenly pulled him into a run and he couldn't resist letting his bright laughter free at the thought of trying to fit two giants on the Merry, "This is gonna be awesome!".

Dorry lay on his back while he looked up to the sky, breaths coming out deep and ragged but a smile on his face nonetheless. "Another draw it seems, my friend.", he bellowed, testing his limbs to see if he had the strength to stand… He didn't. His head dropping back to the earth shook the area and he sighed… It always ended up like this.

Brogy laughed jollily at the words, debris still falling to the ground amongst their prone bodies, "You're as strong as always. I can't move a muscle.".

"And that's just the way I need it.".

The two giants shifted their heads in the direction the voice had come from and their large eyes came upon a curious man with an even more curious hairdo. He was tall for a regular-sized human, lanky with an almost skeletal frame that gave him a gaunt, ghostly appearance even with the fairly tan skin that covered him from head to toe. The one thing neither of the giants could get past, however, was the large 3 that sat on top of his head, stylized out of his own hair.

"Who're you?", Brogy asked uncomfortably. He probably would have been a little less wary if it were any other situation but he couldn't move a muscle he was so exhausted. He tried to shift from where he lay but the movements were minimal.

The mysterious man stepped in between the two fallen giants and stilled for a moment before his head lifted to the sky, a throaty laugh leaving his lips, "This will surely be the easiest two hundred million anyone has ever made. Isn't that right Ms. Goldenweek?".

A young girl wearing a large, floppy pink hat over her red hair stepped out from behind a tree and yawned, stretching her arms over her head. She rubbed the sleep out of her eyes and looked at Mr. Three in annoyance like he'd somehow done her a disservice by calling on her. "Are we done yet?…", she droned tiredly, "… Cause I kinda hate it here.". Her palm smacked against her arm and she pulled her soiled hand back in disgust, "Too many bugs.".

Mr. Three groaned at her disinterest, "… No, Ms. Goldenweek, we aren't finished yet.". He pointed over to the now-shifting giants on either side of him, "As you can see, our bounties still live.".

Dorry slowly shifted his body so he was lying on his side instead of his back and addressed the strange man and the little girl. "Just what is it you're planning to do?", he managed to groan out. What had he meant by what he said? The word bounty tickled something in the back of his head but he was far too tired to follow the thread. What little energy he did have was being used to try to move and there wasn't much left to spare.

"Obviously we mean to kill you.", the bounty hunter reached into his shirt, pulling out two pieces of parchment, and held them up so they could be seen by his targets. He caught the sight of the one called the Red Ogre and smirked at the widening of his eyes, "Familiar?".

Brogy stilled as he stared at the tiny picture of himself and it took a moment of confused thoughts running through his head before it hit him… How could he have forgotten?… Had it truly been so long?… He peeled his large gaze away from the poster and saw Dorry looking at the other with the same realization he knew could be found on his own face. The air calmed for a moment as Dorry met Brogy's stare, the two giants gawking at each other in silence.

Mr. Three jumped in fright at the sudden loudness that surrounded him and Ms. Goldenweek, the sound of deep laughter now echoing from the two massive men's throats. What the hell did they find so funny?… Didn't they realize they were about to die?

"We really have been fighting for quite some time haven't we, Brogy?", Dorry managed to squeeze out through his chortles.

"… They must be insane.", the man whispered to himself incredulously. He shook his bewilderment away and cleared his throat as loudly as he could, "Well, I'm glad the two of you were able to share one final laugh.". He smirked when he found that he had their attention again and put the two posters back into his shirt, stepping in the direction of the Blue Ogre's head, "… Because it's time for your long lives to come to an end.".

Before another word could be said, Mr. Three jumped up to the giant's chest and thrust his hands outward with a maniacal glint in his eye, "The two of you are going to be my greatest pieces yet!".

The bright sunlight beat down on Igaram's face as he lay on the deck of his small vessel, eyes checking his eternal pose every few minutes before closing once again. It'd been this way since he left Whiskey Peak a little more than a week ago… He'd tried to keep himself busy but there was really nothing else to do besides make sure he stayed on course.

The blond man sat up and gazed the sea at the back of the boat, thoughts drifting to his young charge. He still felt uneasy at the thought of her sailing with those ruffians, even more so with all the time he'd had to think about it. But, at least he knew they had the ability to protect her… Whether they used that ability for protecting…

Igaram shook his head and sighed, sight drifting to the small fishing rod to his left when his stomach made a large gurgle. He'd left in a hurry and hadn't checked the ship for rations. Needless to say, there hadn't been a lot to eat… The flapping of wings brought his thoughts away from his empty stomach and his eyes shifted about in curiosity. Almost immediately, he noticed a bird out in the distance and couldn't help but think it seemed to be flying in his direction.

The man stood up and leaned over the side railing, squinting to try giving himself a clearer view. Was it a news coo? It took another moment of watching before the avian was close enough for him to realize what it was and he was shocked, to say the least… What was a pigeon doing all the way out here?

Igaram stared for a while longer as the animal continued to fly closer when it suddenly hit him… He'd seen this bird before… His eyes widened to the size of saucers, "Hattori?!… Is that you?!".