“Oyaji, do you poop?”
"Gurarara, of course I poop, Luffy. Everybody poops."
“Ah, really? Cool! Marco, do you poop when you’re a mystery bird?”
"Where did this come from, yoi?"
"I'm curious! Oyaji said everybody poops, but you get all weird and blue and fiery so maybe you don't."
"I'm not going to answer that, yoi."
“Boo, you're no fun. Namur, do you poop?”
"Did Thatch put you up to this, kid?"
“No! An’ I already asked him but he choked on food and got all red and said to ask someone else, and then muttered something about Marco and rusty knives. So I’m asking you. Do ya?”
“...if I answer will you stop asking people?”
“Fine. I can’t believe I’m doing this… yes. I poop, just like everyone else.”
“What’s it like when you poop underwater? Cuz you’re a fisman – fihman – “
“Yeah, that! So you lived underwater right? Did you poop different?”
“You got your one poop question, Luffy. I’m done.”
“Phooey. Nobody is any fun around here.”
"Luffy, for the last time, you are not getting a watch shift." Curiel rubbed his temples, trying to fight the headache he could already feel coming on. The Moby Dick's youngest member was determined to pull his weight, even when it was physically impossible for him to do so - the brat was shorter than the sides of the crow's nest, for god's sake! He could barely stretch across the spaces of the rigging leading up to it.
“I can do watch too! Just cuz I can’t climb the rig- the riga- the rope things to the crow’s nest doesn’t mean I can’t do it!” Luffy said, pouting.
Curiel resisted the urge to pinch his adorable little cheeks. “Oh? How are you going to do it, then?”
Luffy beamed, and Curiel immediately took a step back. That smile meant nothing good. The brat darted off, coming back with Blenheim in tow. “This is my crow’s nest!” he said brightly, before scrambling up Blenheim’s shirt until he was on top of the tall man’s head. “Now I’m on watch!”
Curiel gave Blenheim an incredulous look, and the ninth division commander shrugged. “He gave me the puppy eyes. I folded like a bad poker hand.” He poked Luffy gently in the stomach. “Anything to see up there, watchman Luffy?”
Curiel slipped away as Luffy chirped a reply, intent on getting a camera. This needed to be documented immediately, on the off chance someone on the crew didn’t get to see it in action before Luffy got bored. As he walked, he wondered how Oyaji had managed to get out of being Luffy’s crow’s nest.
“Stefaaaaaaan, nooooooo, you gotta be still,” Luffy said, trying to hold the dog’s head in place as he brushed his hair out into ever-larger poofs. “You’ll be a lion. A battle lion! And we can raid Oyaji’s food stash!” Luffy had yet to discover that Oyaji’s ‘food stash’ was in fact a sake stash, because every attempt at getting in was thwarted before he made it.
The dog obligingly held still for about five seconds before his tail started wagging and he playfully nudged Luffy in the chest. The boy frowned. “Fierce, Stefan! Fierce!”
Stefan barked loudly, bounding in a circle around Luffy, who nodded approvingly and tossed the brush over his shoulder. “Kay. Now we gotta give you war paint. Nobody will try to stop us this time!” He whipped Izou’s makeup out of his pockets, giving Stefan’s new mane ‘fearsome’ rainbow stripes with Izou’s eye shadow. When he was finished he sat back with a satisfied nod, then added red to the fur that looked like Oyaji’s mustache. “All done! Now, onwards, Stefan the battle lion!” Luffy cried, raising a hand in the air as he hopped onto the dog’s back.
They made it a dozen yards before a sharp call of “Monkey D. Luffy!” made Luffy freeze in the middle of a loud battle cry, and Stefan stopped in response. Slowly, Luffy turned around to see Izou striding towards him, a terrifyingly polite smile on his face. “Just the hooligan I wanted to see. You wouldn’t happen to know what happened to my makeup, would you?” the commander asked sweetly, looking pointedly at Stefan’s multicolor hairstyle.
Luffy started sweating, hiding the eye shadow behind his back as he whistled innocently and looked away. Stefan, not noticing the mortal danger his young rider was currently in, ambled up to Izou and nudged the man’s hand for scratches, putting Luffy within grabbing range.
Izou snatched Luffy off the dogs back with one hand, scratching Stefan behind the ears with the other. “And what are you hiding behind your back, hmmmmmm?” Luffy just whistled louder. “Give it up, brat, you’re not fooling anyone. Give me my eye shadow.”
“I had to make Stefan a battle lion,” Luffy said as he handed it over. “I needed colors. He looks fierce now!”
Izou rolled his eyes as he carried Luffy over to a corner of the deck. “Next time, use something that is not my makeup.” He set Luffy down on so he was facing the railing. “Seiza, five minutes, facing the corner, and if you move we start over. Go.”
“I won’t do it again!” Luffy tried to look as pathetic and apologetic as possible, but Izou stopped him before he could turn around. Everyone on the ship knew how devastating those big sad eyes could be.
“That’s what you said when you made him pretty last week, and look where we are now.” Izou crossed his arms, giving Luffy a stern look. “The sooner you start the sooner you’ll be done. Go.”
Luffy puffed out his cheeks but did as he was told, settling on his knees. It took barely thirty seconds for him to start fidgeting, then stop himself, then fidget again. After three minutes Izou took pity on the kid and set him loose with a warning to never touch his makeup again that went in one ear and out the other, and Luffy bounded away to find Stefan and continue their raid on Oyaji’s food stash.
“Marco! Welcome back! Where’d you go? What’d you do? Did you bring me any food?” Luffy attached himself to the first division commander’s leg as soon as the man stepped onto the deck, beaming up at him as he babbled his questions.
Marco laughed, ruffling Luffy's hair as he headed off to report to Whitebeard. "I went to a couple stores around the port to coordinate a resupply. No food, sorry, but there's a couple guys who are interested in possibly joining the crew, yoi." He motioned over his shoulder at the half-dozen strangers following him.
Luffy popped his head out, giving them a wide smile. "Hi! I'm Luffy! Are you gonna talk to Oyaji about being nakama?"
All the potential crew members stared at Luffy in shock. One of them, a large guy missing some teeth (Marco was pretty sure his name was Teach), said "Yeah, that's the goal, I guess. Are you on the crew, kid?"
Luffy grinned widely, nodding so hard a few of the men worried his head would come off his neck. “Yup! I’m Luffy! Who’re you guys?”
“Navic.” “Eest.” “Kun.” “Sonder.” “Tambahan.” “Teach.”
Marco poked the top of Luffy’s head. “Manners, yoi. Don’t make me tell Thatch.”
“Oh yeah!” Luffy unwound on arm from Marco’s leg to wave at the new arrivals. “Nice to meetcha! Welcome to the ship! It’s the coolest!” He stared at them intently. “Do you have any food?”
“Ignore that,” Marco said, ruffling Luffy’s hair when he gave a grumpy ‘hrmph’. “Give him food now and he’ll think you have it all the time.” He peeled Luffy off his leg, setting him down on the deck. “Go find Thatch if you’re really that hungry, yoi. I’ll see you after we talk to Oyaji.”
“’Kay! Good luck new guys! Don’t die!” With a final cheerful wave, Luffy was off, leaving an amused Marco and a vaguely terrified pack of new recruits in his wake as he shouted for Thatch at the top of his lungs.
Dinner several hours later was a loud and exciting affair, as all six of the recruits were welcomed to the crew with a feast and seats at the commanders table to see where they would fit best. Eventually Luffy got tired of all the boring serious talk and shoved his way between Teach and the second division commander, Otrais. “What division you gonna join, mister?” He looked a little sheepish as he settled in his seat, bouncing on his knees. “I forgot your name.”
“Don’t sweat it, kid. It’s Teach,” Teach answered, grinning down at his new pint-sized nakama. “Commander Otrais over there was just telling me about the second division when you came over; sounds like my kind of group, I’ll probably go with them.” He pulled a cherry pie his direction. “Luffy, right? Want any?”
“Bleeeeech, cherry pie is icky,” Luffy said, sticking his tongue out. “Are you gonna eat the rest of that meat?”
“Nope, all yours, kid,” Teach said, grinning as he hefted the pie and slid his meat Luffy’s way. “Have at it. More pie for me, then.”
“Shishishi, all the meat for me!” Luffy cheered, beaming up at Teach. “Welcome to the crew, Teach!”