I do not own 'One Piece' or 'The Gamer'
Anguish swept over her heart as she was forced to be on the run again. Saul's final words were growing more repugnant with each and every betrayal.
The Enclosure, Mariejois
My fingers drummed against the grungy floor, apprehension had filled the once-docile air.
It's been a few days since Hancock was carried off and I'm not sure how much longer it'll take for her to return. The remaining siblings had opted to confide in their isolationist mindsets, even regarding me with some uncertainty.
In summary, this whole thing is one gigantic mess.
"You really need to–"
"–Stop with that face'," I groaned, looking at Regi with a minuscule amount of contempt. "You've said it like a million times."
It's starting to be his gimmick, something that's genuinely becoming more annoying with each instance.
He took in a deep breath.
"I get it, you're still angry, but we can exactly do anything."
"Saying that doesn't stop me from being pissed off," I stated, slumping against the wall.
"True, I just wanted you to know that so you're not gonna try something dumb." Regi clarified, causing my lips to curl downwards.
Commenting on his snark would've been the go-to, but I just let him doze back off. Despite that, another thing crossed my mind. The sheer surprise at remembering a certain someone provoked me to audibly groan.
I've prided myself in possessing 'future knowledge', if that's still currently a thing. I'm well aware that forgetfulness isn't beyond me. Regardless of the advantage, I'm far from the perfect individual — nobody is or will be.
"I completely forgot about Koala..." I mumbled, making sure I wasn't heard. "I can't believe she showed up this time."
To be fair, I didn't exactly have time to contemplate such a reveal due to Who's-Who taking Hancock away.
I began to quickly recall the events regarding the future Revolutionary.
The little girl would eventually find herself on Fisher Tiger's ship and inadvertently caused the death of the man — if Arlong is to be believed.
When exactly did that happen? Was it right after the escape or at another point in the future?
I genuinely don't remember.
'If I can get her away from Fisher Tiger, his chances of survival will skyrocket.' Her home was the reason why the Marines were capable of ambushing him in the first place. Removing such a scenario is the obvious option to try and accomplish.
'Maybe that's why she learned Fishman Karate?' A likely possibility since I'm sure that some Fishman in the Revolutionary Army wouldn't mind teaching her.
To think she's 'owned' by Rosward of all people, which is extremely helpful since I recalled where they kept me before being thrown into the enclosure. The little girl was being held in the residential district. More specifically, the basement floor of the Celestial Dragon with the rest of the 'house servants'. Her need to clean up everything on Fisher Tiger's ship made a lot more sense now.
With newfound determination fixing itself onto my face, an improvised plan started to conjure.
"Hmm?" He glanced my way.
"Do you trust me?" I questioned, thoughtfully staring directly into his eyes.
The old man appeared rather muddled, before the bafflement manifested and overridden the front.
"You heard me," I didn't dare move an inch and the gaze I maintained on him was nothing else outside of unrelenting. "Do...you...trust...me?"
The pause and silence told me everything, but I understood it wasn't due to the question itself. He's attempting to comprehend beyond the inquiry I've requested. It's not as if I'm purposefully steering and misleading him away toward something else. As a particular copycat ninja would say, 'Look underneath the underneath'.
In the end, his reaction was clear from the beginning.
"Of course," The ex-pirate declared, the hesitation was gone without a trace.
Regi's unrelenting adamancy concerning devotion was one thing that could always be counted on.
"That's good to know, because I hope it works out after all we've been through."
I knew he was looking at me inquisitively, but it's not something to worry about now.
With the goal that I've acquired mustering in this head of mine...maybe everything will end up fine
The Enclosure's Second Room, Mariejois
"Gaaahh!" I shouted, tripping over and landing on the floor. The adrenalin was finally wearing off, leaving behind a throbbing ache in my right leg. "Stupid Cipher Pol techniques..."
I'm still far too weak to try any of the Rokushiki. Even the basic Soru is beyond my grasp and someone like that idiot Nero could pull it off. The only choice I have is to improve the other skills and work on my leg strength for the future.
"What the hell was your crazy ass trying to do?" Regi questioned, looking on with the usual discontent.
I'm not gonna blame him for asking such a thing since I've been at it for hours. Luffy made the whole thing seem so incredibly effortless that it's painful.
His main character's perks are definitely absurd.
"You know that 'elite squad' guy from a super long while ago?" I said, recalling the Cipher Pol Zero agent. "The person with the mask?"
"What about it?" He curled an eyebrow.
"The little speed technique of theirs involves hitting the ground ten times in an instant." There's some progress due to finally reaching four times, though everything's sluggish as predicted. "I'm trying to replicate it."
"You saw him do that?"
"Yeah," I lied, merely knowing this information because of Luffy's commentary to Blueno.
The Cipher Pol Zero agent 'Joseph' was far too fast for me or anyone inside the enclosure. Regi's query merely embellished the fact that their sheer speed was beyond anything we've witnessed.
Truthfully, replicating the other Rokushiki as a whole was a primary objective for me. Some day, I'll try my hand at the [Rokuogan] as it's the culmination of all those skills with total mastery.
"Ten times in an instant, you say..." He scratched his scruffy beard, making a distinct humming noise. "Duly noted."
If he's endeavoring to work on said technique then I don't see how that's not net-positive.
"Don't kill yourself over it."
He seemed appalled by those words.
"Seriously? You're saying that to me of all people?" Regi put a hand on his chest. "I've seen you drop unconscious so many times because of your little 'just one hit' spiel."
My mouth opened for a retort, then I remembered all the moments he was referring to.
"Oh indeed, sunny boy." His signature glare came and I could tell he was not amused whatsoever. "Take care of yourself more or else I'll have to–"
"–smack you around as usual." I chuckled sardonically. "You're getting predictable, old man."
After living half a decade with the geezer, I've maintained some awareness of his all-around personality and inclinations concerning just about anything really.
Regi didn't say anything in response for an isolated few seconds, merely watching me with a semi-inquisitive expression before turning away.
"Well...maybe the student isn't too far off after all."
Without even looking at the man, I already knew that he was sneaking a smile.
The Enclosure, Mariejois
It was quiet as I'd envisioned.
The faint sounds of snoring and shuffling are the only things that could be discerned. My soft and hushed footsteps made their way across the chamber, keen on ensuring that the rest of the slaves were well in their sleep.
"Psst, Sandersonia...Marigold." I gently whispered, watching the duo tense up from their slumber. "Don't worry, it's just me."
They visibly relaxed as they realized who I was. That's when I unhurriedly sat down in front of them.
"Oh...Henry," The eldest of the two yawned, taking the time to get a decent look at my appearance.
It's good to know that they still see me in a friendly manner.
"Sorry for dropping in unannounced like this," I'm uncertain if there is a method to accomplish otherwise. "I just want to check up on ya."
Considering how horrible everything unfurled, it's the least I could do. Nobody should be left alone after such an event happened to their loved one.
Marigold rubbed her eyes, taking another second to readjust herself.
"Why are you here at this time?" She asked, slightly annoyed. "We were trying to sleep."
"Yeah...I hear ya and I'm sorry about that," My gaze peeked behind me, getting an adequate view of the others. "I didn't want Regi to get in the way."
Regardless of my standings with him, I'm not taking any chances with his quibbling. Maybe that's a bit harsh on my part, but it's better to be safe than sorry.
Anyhow, I think the three of us already knew why I'm currently here.
"I just wanted to ask something, if that's alright..." I relaxed myself, watching their confused regards shift into something more profound. "Do you know why they took Hancock away?"
I wasn't completely convinced of the diminutive suspicion I retained as it could've simply been a coincidence. However, small intuitions are perhaps more valuable, specifically this world in particular.
Marigold visibly winced and her sister wasn't that far off.
"She...she was taken because of her Devil Fruit," Sandersonia explained, looking downwards. "They said they're bringing a lot of people's blood for experimenting."
"Experimenting? On your sister of all people?"
Hancock wasn't the exceptionally dangerous Warlord yet.
The same person who wiped out the bulk of Blackbeard's forces when he invaded Amazon Lily, even his commanders weren't exempted from her fury. Even so, I'm not too sure if that warrants such a drastic thing from the World Government.
She nodded, albeit trepidatiously.
"Her Devil Fruit is 'very strong' and that's why Vegapunk is really interested in it."
Now why would that Einstein look-alike want to grab Hanc... — It clicked immediately. That's all the details I required to put the pieces together.
The only reason I remember such a thing is because it's in the most recent arc.
Those winged biomechanical monstrosities who are the so-called 'most powerful beings in the world'. From what I've interpreted as it's more along the lines of their potential than the present day.
'He's been doing that crap this early in the timeline?' I thought, jumbling through my own memories. 'Is that how they got Hancock's DNA? Through her slavery days?'
How long did they hold until King's or should I say 'Alber'?
From Vegapunk's point of view, I'm sure her becoming a Warlord was surprising. The blood he must've attained from the Kuja undoubtedly climbed on his priority list from there.
Now I want to know how he got it from the others.
Kuma's fairly blatant since he's worked closely with the scientist.
Jinbe? Who knows.
But worst of all...Mihawk.
I'd find it hilarious if the most powerful swordsman voluntarily supplied his blood solely for a worthy challenge. He did train Zoro simply for that very person to perhaps overthrow him later on down the line, which I'm undoubtedly convinced transpired.
'This whole thing is just one big rabbit hole.' It's best I shelve those introspections for now as I'm engaged in another matter.
"Do you know when she'll come back?" I asked, trying to comprehend the situation wholly.
Marigold was the first to respond by shaking her head.
"Sometimes it's only one day, others...weeks." The redhead elucidated. "Elder sister...she doesn't want to say anything about it."
I was hoping to get more knowledge on what else Vegapunk could potentially be scheming this early on. Perhaps it's asking for a little too much from two.
However, I've thought of a different proposition to give them.
"If ya want, you can stay with Regi and me on our end," I suggested, pointing my thumb at the sleeping old man. "I'm sure he won't mind."
The ex-pirate was a softy when it came to people like myself as I've come to understand. Also, leaving them vulnerable in this hectic enclosure is the last thing I'm trying to do.
"I...umm..." Marigold looked at Sandersonia who appeared to be considering the offer. The green-haired teen seized the initiative from there.
"If she doesn't come within the next two days, we'll go." She replied clearly.
"That's fine by me," I presented them with the usual grin of mine, "Head on over whenever you're ready."
If Hancock isn't here at that point — which I'm hoping she is — then they'll be safe with the old man.
"Oh, and like I said to your sister, don't be a stranger." I voiced, heading back towards the little corner both Regi and I called our little home. "I'll always be here if you need me."
And with that, sleep begins to call my name.
"Runnin' down to Cuba with a load of sugar~! Weigh me boys to Cuba~! Make her run, you lime juice squeezes...Running down to Cuba~!."
"What the hell is a Cuba?" Regi questioned.
I giggled at the inquiry, still going through my normal workout routine as predicted. It's nearing lunchtime, so I'm inclined to get some handstand pushups before then.
"They say it's where the gods made their tobacco never-ending," I clarified, reminiscing about some stories from a past life.
"So you've become one of those Nika heretics?" The accuser spoke half-heartedly with an ashamed front. "And to think all of my teachings were finally showing some results..."
The disdain on my face said it all.
"Don't put me in the same boat as those lunatics," I retorted, baffled at his claims. "They're all just a bunch of sheep."
While I somewhat knew the truth behind Sun God Nika and the so-called 'Rubber Fruit', saying the constant praying and crying was irritating is far from a misjudgment.
'Maybe I could use it to my advantage somehow?' Now that I think about it, that's too much work for one guy.
"Fair enough," He conceded with a side-eye. "But if I ever see you spouting that bullshit, I'll just smack it out of your brain."
"Right back at ya."
That's when a notification screen appeared.
New Skill Gained!
Singing Lv. (1/50)
The user's proficiency in performing songs or tunes by making musical sounds with their voice.
Ya know…huh — wasn't envisioning something like this to occur.
Having mundane abilities isn't outside of the norm with the system, but [Singing] of all things was a pleasant surprise.
How diverse do the skills go exactly?
I wonder what other common everyday talents there are.
Either way, there's nothing like bothering the hell out of the old man to level this up. I'm sure it'll be a fantastic usage of time considering we're stuck in this endless cycle of boredom.
"Well, my father often told me when I was just a lad~! A sailor's life is very hard, the food is always bad~! But now that I've joined the navy, I'm aboard a man-o-war~! And now I've found a sailor ain't a sailor anymore~!"
I glanced at Regi who seemed more and more befuddled with every verse.
"Don't haul on the rope~! Don't climb up the mast~! If you see a sailing ship, it might be your last~! Just get your civvies ready for another run-ashore~! A sailor ain't a sailor, ain't a sailor anymore~!"
"What kinda song is this?" He scratched his head. "I've never heard of it before."
Skill Level Up!
Singing Lv. (1/50) → (2/50)
I laughed in response, persisting with the singing, even as the ex-pirate looked sincerely confused.
My eyes flickered over to the approaching individuals, recognizing who they were, and beamed.
"Well, would you look at that...Marigold! Sandersonia!" I waved at them as they came closer, "It's good to see you two finally made it! Come sit down with us!"
I'm not too surprised, but the joy in seeing them here is there regardless of any premade assumptions.
"We're just starting another round of something called 'chopsticks'," I explained, continuing on with the game. "Just watch and learn how I win again."
Regi grunted, leaning forward moderately.
'He's so easy to rile up sometimes.' Maybe we both are in our own little way.
The sisters had sat down and observed, watching the quick movements between us. Of course, like usual, the victor always ended up being the same.
"And that's that," I snickered. "Don't you dare say I 'rigged it' again, old bastard."
"Fine, I'll just think about it." He retorted, a sly smirk appearing on the man's face.
I shouldn't be annoyed about this anymore since he'll always have some sort of snarky comeback as I've frequently predicted. I'm probably never going to get the last say.
"That's a very strange game," The redhead commented. "Did you come up with it?"
"You could say that."
More like stolen...or do those rules still apply outside in-universe terms?
"Hey...why don't you play against the geezer?" I suggested, gesturing towards the ex-pirate. "He might have a chance against a newbie."
"Really?" She seemed rather surprised.
There's no harm in Marigold playing him. In fact, it'll just give me more ammo if she'll win miraculously. Surprisingly, Regi didn't say anything about it, he simply rolled along with the punches.
And with those two preoccupied, I believe it'd be nice to finally—
"Why are you doing all of this, Henry?" Sandersonia asked, taking me out of my own thoughts. "Why us?"
I raised an eyebrow, muddied at the sudden questioning.
She sighed deeply, scrutinizing me with some suspicion.
"I mean that you barely even know us," Her frowning slightly curled down more. "It's like you're acting as if we've already known each other for a long time."
I understand now.
She thinks my abnormal behavior towards them is illogical because of how relaxed I am.
It's best that I clear it up now.
"I'm not sure if you've realized, but just take a good look around here, and tell me who the youngest people are outside of our little pack." I furtively pointed at the other small groups.
The green-haired glanced at the slaves and I utilized the opportunity to continue speaking.
"Nobody here is like us, Sandersonia. I just got so tired..."
There's no ill will against them, it's only basic recognition skills at use.
"I'm not secretly plotting against you, Marigold, or Hancock." That's the last thing I'll try to do honestly. "We might not have known each other for that long, but I feel like I can trust you three."
The genuine smile on my face grew more distinguished.
"All you have to understand is that I've got your back, always."
Silence followed between us as I could tell that she wasn't expecting me to say such things.
"Henry...I don't know what to say..."
"Ya don't have to because that's what friends are for, right?" I giggled, then brought my hands to pat her on the back. "If you need anything, just ask."
Sometimes, it's simply like that.
"Does this mean I win?" Marigold seemed perplexed, causing the rest of us to take notice.
I looked more closely from where I was and couldn't believe what I'm seeing.
"Hahaha! No fucking way she just beat you, Regi!" The laughter brought some tears to my eyes. "You really are the worst!"
"This whole thing was a damned fluke," He grumbled and that just made me laugh even more. "I must've not been paying attention."
Regi's backtracking is at an all-time high.
"It's the honest truth! Maybe the rules were different from what I remember." Given the tone of his voice, I'm not too keen on agreeing so precipitously.
"Sasasasa!" Even Sandersonia was chuckling. "Perhaps I should play this game as well."
"Oh...I think you'll love it," I didn't know if she truly would, but it's worth a shot.
"So did I win or what?" Marigold questioned once more and there was a slight pause before we bursted out laughing again.
These sisters were truly something else. Maybe this place wouldn't be so boring after all.
Heavy footsteps weren't uncommon to overhear, especially with how much the guard's shift hours operated with multiple Devil Fruit users inside here.
We were silent — the usual wasn't pertinent in this case. Everybody's eyes locked onto the twin doors that lightly shuttered with each passing moment.
If the voices on the outside signified anything, even with how organized things are within this vast room, today was beyond the standard.
"Get moving right now!"
"Where the hell is Cipher Pol?!"
"Call the Marines immediately!"
"Everything is jammed!"
The shouting stemming from beyond the doorway was growing more clamorous, concurrent with the distant explosions inching closer by the second.
Then, I realized nobody stood defending our enclosure, preoccupied with whatever is happening out there.
"Bright," Regi muttered, staring directly at the wall.
"There's a lot of them and they're very bright." He stated, his eyes flinching somewhat. "It's kinda hard to look at, frankly."
I'm not entirely convinced of what to make of that statement. Although, the observation was nonetheless mystifying.
"He's right," Sandersonia noted, her gaze moving around a bit. "There's a lot of chaos going on out there."
"Maybe a Reverie is going on and something bad has happened?" I noted, unsure about the whole situation.
While understanding that the sisters were here narrowed the timeline down, it doesn't strictly assist with this whole situation.
"That's unlikely, it sounds more lik–"
Something exploded and shuddered the whole building, compelling me to stumble even while seated down. Whatever is going on out there, it was coming closer to our general area.
The rest of the slaves are beginning to panic, primarily by hugging their backs against the wall. Curiously, a few had begun praying candidly, ignoring the trembling infrastructure.
"Oh great Nika, save us in our times of despair!"
"Show us how your freedom stretches with no bounds!"
"Please, oh great Sun God! Watch over us!"
Let's just say people aren't accepting the whole fiasco not very well. If the weeping and the onerous cries weren't apparent enough.
Another detonation rippled throughout the space, provoking those outcrying to be more audible.
Where the hell did all of this energy come from?
I thought they didn't bother about those things, mainly considering their robotic-like demeanor.
Well, the more you know.
"Lots of people are running around," Regi remarked, staring directly at the twin doors. "I wasn't expecting this of all things."
"Wait...is someone coming here?" I inquired.
"I think we'll all be seeing a person soon." He stated, not even glancing at me once. "Very…soon."
The ringing sensation convulsed once again, vibrating the very foundations of the enclosure. I didn't know if the building would last much longer considering how close that one was.
"No...wait! Stop you ba–AAAAGGGGHHHH!" The scream didn't have time to fully manifest as a body blasted through the door and into the center of the chamber.
"I don't have time to hear your foolishness," Someone remarked with a tinge of venom in their voice.
We collectively peered at the now ruined twin doors, hearing the sounds of hulking footsteps coming closer.
Entering the room was a large blue whale shark fish-man. He has a stocky build similar to that of a sumo wrestler and possesses yellow eyebrows with a bulb-like nose and an angular lower lip pointing upwards.
The need to employ [Observe] was unnecessary, but I believed it'd be prudent if my eyes were deluding me.
Jinbe, [Sun Pirates]
"Holy shit," I said, my jaw slacking somewhat in amazement at what was ensuing.
I'm skeptical about this being a dream or if the hallucinations were starting to get to me, but this was getting absurd.
'Actually, these past few months have been especially chaotic.' I frowned at those thoughts. My eyes latched back onto the crisis developing before us all.
The Fishman Karate master grumbled as his gaze examined each of us.
"To think the Celestial Dragons were truly doing such a thing," He said, genuinely looking saddened. "The captain was right..."
The future Straw Hat Pirate — was that still applicable? — strolled cautiously.
"Worry not humans, I will free you nonetheless." Jinbe proclaimed, taking a few steps forward until the body that was thrown in earlier began to chuckle.
"You think the gods are going to forget this?! You filthy Fishman!?"
They groaned, struggling to sit upright.
"I'll kill you...you scum!"
"Scum?" Jinbe stood still, a snarl on his face. "I don't think you're in any position to speak."
I didn't utter a word nor move an inch, regarding the guard that began to laugh considerably louder.
"If I sacrifice myself to take out a disgusting monster such as you?" The helmet tilted upwards, enough for us to see the grin hiding underneath. "Then the gods shall be pleased!"
The bloodied guard took out two grenades.
"Regi!" I shouted, turning away to run.
He kicked Sandersonia and Marigold away, but was too slow to make it to where I was.
"I'll take you down with me!" He pulled the pins and a light show began.
The subsequent detonation was blinding as I felt myself being thrown upward, feeling only one singular sensation.
-37 HP (53/90)
Skill Level Up!
Resistance: Physical Lv. (6/90) → (7/90)
Skill Level Up!
Resistance: Physical Lv. (7/90) → (8/90)
I gritted my teeth, holding myself together to push through the distress.
Even so, that's when I realized through the blinding rays all around me, it's that I'm on the outside. Unfortunately, the current dilemma I've been positioned in is far from exemplary. Being tossed into the sky and slowly going downwards has me beginning to thrash about, attempting to land somewhere that's more ideal.
A soft ticking sound began convulsing from within my collar, gradually growing more deafening while I'm still in the air.
Having thought that, from the building below, I saw the glint of someone nearing me and fast.
Regi leaped into the air and grabbed onto the bomb collar as his own began to tick. The ex-pirate's hold tightened, disinclined to let go.
The few seconds while we were floating felt akin to minutes with the absolute mayhem I can overhear from all about.
Both eyes glanced down at the carnage below and I genuinely felt sick to my stomach.
People screamed as the collars on their necks detonated, leaving parts of their heads completely missing. For the unlucky, they were either crushed underneath the rubble, or their companions' bombs caused them to die in the crossfire.
Even in the midst of all this chaos, the old man's eyes were focused, with both of his arms straining against the metal.
"Get off..." I heard him mutter, the sheer intensity in the man's grip reaching its apex.
His breathing was growing more rapid with each tick, finally reaching a breaking point.
Then I felt something — a small crack. It grew deeper and more extensive as the pressure continued.
"I said...GET OFF!"
And it did...with the sound of a crunch.
He tore the thing, throwing it up into the air, but it's not over yet. The ex-pirate grabbed onto his own and did the same thing in such a quick sequence.
As if fate was playing a sick game, they exploded in the air, just in the nick of time.
He carried me until we hit the ground, standing on both of his feet.
My body tried to reorient itself, refusing to falter here.
Although I'm currently in pain and confused, I remembered the other two occupants that were left behind.
"Regi..." I coughed several times, pointing at the building that was on fire.
He nodded and rushed towards the siblings without saying a word, leaving me there to ultimately have the chance to examine the surrounding area.
My somewhat blurred vision had finally subsided, allowing me to truly take in the flames and insanity going off from what seemed like everywhere. Jinbe had somehow evaded most of the damage, probably through Haki if I were betting.
I watched onward in pure astonishment, gradually understanding the current situation. The sheer quantity of Fishmen is far from what I'd expected — a lot of them don't look like fellow slaves.
Everything had drastically changed with this dissimilarity.
This wasn't a mere one-man crusade.
This was a full-on assault.
My Server: QG8WraudFB
Shiro's Discord Code: wd3tUYWVCd
The Sun Pirates have formed much earlier than in canon. Poor Queen Otohime, the PR is going to be much worse than it normally had been.
For those of you saying it's too slow and stale, you're not going to win with this fic, try that shit at another place. If you want a character destroying the verse in 1 chapter, go look for that elsewhere, it's not that hard to find.
Did yall hear the Drake AI song with the Weeknd?
It's crazy good. Artificial intelligence is really getting more terrifying as time goes on.
So with chapter 1081, Blackbeard mid-diffed Law...I knew it was a likely possibility, but damn does it still kinda sucks. Also, shoutout to my boy Bepo for pulling through with the Sulong form, and shutting the haters up.
Eustass Captain Kid, or should I say Useless Captain Mid, got no-diffed by an Emperor Of The Sea. Law actually put up a fight even with the loss — it's a feat in my book!
Agenda Piece is still alive!
Random Question: What's your favorite One Piece fic and why?
Mine is A Gamer In The South Blue simply because it doesn't follow the normal "follow the Straw Hats" thing that everybody seems to do.