"So, how long do you plan on staying?" Sanji asked, serving him a dish of noodles on a table that faces out to the wild, rushing sea.
His golden hair blows in the air as he takes a puff from the cigarette in his hand and looks idly at the blue open sky where the birds soar with freedom.
After the incident with the pirates, the entire restaurant became his home, as everyone here welcomed him like an honored guest. He had been sleeping in Sanjis room, of course, giving him the personal space he needs when he needs some alone time at night. Bros got to be respectful of that.
Well, back to the topic here. Besides eating some food occasionally, Leo had been practicing his swordsmanship night and day in a spot at the end of the ship where nobody will catch the notice of where he is at. Theres only Sanji who knows where to find him and brings him some food.
"Oh come on, Sanji, you
e already kicking me out?"
Sanji grins before blowing the smoke from his mouth. "You can stay as long as you want. But you don seem like the type to stay long, anyway. You seem more like someone who is not willing to settle until you have the entire sky explored."
Leo looked up at the blue skin that seemed to be as blue as the grand ocean that sparkles with beautiful light.
"Theres nothing more beautiful than an adventure, don you think? Perhaps theres a spirit inside of us that asks us to push beyond the limitations that we know until we
e free to embrace the vast sky as our own."
Sanji was quiet again as his eyes seemed to quietly reflect on Leos words, while the smoke from his cigarette flows into the air and was blown apart by the wind in the opposite direction. Both of them remained quiet in that peaceful afternoon after that.
That night, when Sanji came into his room after a tiring day picking up the ladies, he found a folded letter on his bed. Without any lamp light, he picked it up with his slender figures and walked to a window, and read it under the moonlight hanging down from the sky.
When he finished reading that letter, he folded it as he looks away into the distant ocean that moves slowly with its own rhythm. Theres a warm smile on his face as Sanji seems to have something on his mind after reading Leos words.
Sanji muttered to himself as he shook his head while smiling, "One day I will catch up to your steps. As you said to me, It is the grand ocean that awaits us out there with open arms."
On a distant island in East Blue, far away, he has hidden himself as a homeless unknown in the forest. During the time that has passed on this quiet land, he has quietly practiced the Way of the Sword with diligence.
During the time that passed, he has grown a beard and formed a flowing lock of hair that comes all the way down his shoulders, while his clothing has been in tatters. Where the sun shines down upon his form, he looks up through the hair in front of his face and puts down his sword.
"With the time that has passed, I have yet to raise my sword to the next stage," Leo sighed with a smile on his dry lips. "How many months have passed?"
The birds make their noise in the air, which breaks his train of thought as he returns his attention back to the present.
"Master! Master! I brought you food!!"
Looking in the noises direction, Leo catches sight of the young children from the peaceful village coming in his direction. Their large smiles plastered on their little faces as they swarmed in his direction.
Facing these children, he could maintain his stern form as he touched their heads with his hands and smiled warmly.
"Haven I told you, children, not to find me again?" Leo said, while trying to avoid looking into their innocent eyes. They begged for his attention. This life and the last, Im truly not good at dealing with little children.
"How can we abandon you, Master, to live deep in the forest alone? You must be so lonely without us." One boy took out a rabbit that they hunted from behind and showed it to Leo.
"Lonely? Me? You guys must be mistaken," he laughed while taking the rabbit to examine before gathering some materials to start a fire.
"Master is such a terrible liar. Weve already spotted you talking to yourself every time you sit alone at night," the oldest child, Vincent, joked with him.
Leo sighs before sitting down to roast the animals with them. "Looks like I have gotten caught by you, children."
He smiled happily as he sat together with them and cooked their meal. Their laughing faces made him forget that this was the world of pirates. When he first came to this island, it was different.
A pirate raid caused the island to be roasted to the ground, and it was a sad figure as he came up to shore, seeing the children all wearing nothing more than rags. He might as well be called a psychopath already for not caring about where his sword lands, but he couldn stand seeing the sight of those in need.
No women were on the streets as he walked past what they left of the once-island village. The adults had a dejected look on their faces that spoke of their loss of hope. He saw people and broken families clutching to broken picture frames and sobbing fiercely on their knees.
"Master! Wake up! The rabbit is about to be burnt," said Vincent, patting Leo on the shoulders to wake him up from his remembrance.
"Oh gosh, why didn you tell me sooner?" said Leo, taking the rabbit from the fire.