Vivi and her group travel to a meeting of Baroque Works
|The trio of Vivi, Robin, and Mr. 9 were all riding on camels traveling across the desert of Alabaster. They were traveling to the Spider Café to attend a meeting of Baroque Works. The Spider Café was run by one of the members of Baroque Works, Zala, or as she was known to the other members, Miss Double Fingers, the partner of Mr. 1.
It had been about four weeks since Vivi had finished the arm deal with Ms. Gloom. Since then she had been on a few more missions, mainly to make sure supplies were in the right spot for the coming war Crocodile kept talking about. Thanks to this and her constant correspondence with Robin, who knew all the member's missions, Vivi and Robin had been able to figure the basic layout of where Baroque Works was going to attack.
The trio were moving in a line formation, Robin in the front, Vivi after her, and Mr. 9 taking up the rear. Vivi kicked her camel and rode up next to Robin.
"Is there something you want Miss Wednesday?" Robin asked Vivi, the trio using their code names since this trip was considered a mission for Baroque Works.
"Since we still have a way to go on this trip, I was wondering if, well", Vivi felt embarrassed, she had been wanting to ask about this for a long time, so she swallowed her embarrassment, and looked over at Robin. "Why did you join the Baroque Works? You seem, how should I say it, better than them."
Robin chuckled to herself and then her face slowly turned sad. "It is a sad story, are you sure you want to hear it?" Robin asked Vivi. Vivi looked away from Robin, feeling guilty due to the look on Robin's face, then she nodded her head anyway, ready to hear it. "Well, it all started when I was a child."
Robin then started to tell Vivi about her past.
"I grew up on the island of Ohara in West Blue. We were a peaceful island, and we were only interested in studying history. At the center of the island was a beautiful 5000 year old tree we called the Tree of Knowledge. I would play on it sometimes." Robin remembered while looking out in the distance, overcome by nostalgia. She then shook her head and continued the story.
"Our island had a secret however. The people on our island started to study the Poneglyphs. They were interested in learning about a century that is missing from all history books and the Poneglyphs mentioned that period. The study of this is illegal by mandate of the World Government."
Vivi's eyes flickered when she heard the word Poneglyphs, she had heard her father mention that word in one of the meetings she had listened in on.
Robin continued. "So, the World Government, the Marines, they ordered a Buster Call on Ohara." Robin sighed and a tear fell down her cheek. "I was the only survivor of the island."
Vivi felt sick to her stomach, a Buster Call, on a peaceful island, she had never heard of the Marines doing such a thing.
"After the Buster Call the World Government branded Ohara a traitorous country. They said we wanted to resurrect an ancient weapon and destroy the world. That was not true in the least", Robin's voice started to crack, tears streaming down her eyes, "we wanted just to study history, that is all!"
Robin stopped for a moment and wiped her eyes, Vivi listened intently.
"After that I was wanted by the World Government, I was given a bounty when I was only eight years old. I had to fight to survive, and I did. While surviving, I continued to study, hopeful to find Poneglyphs, and discover what it was that the World Government did not want us to find.
Three years ago I was cornered by Sir Crocodile, and he made me an offer I could not refuse. He would either turn me over to the World Government, to my certain death, or he offered me a chance to join him. He knows there is a Poneglyph in Alabaster that points to one of the ancient weapons my home was destroyed for. Since he was one of the Seven Warlords he knew the reason I was given a bounty at such a young age, and the real reason Ohara was destroyed. He knew I could read the text on the Poneglyphs, that I can read the ancient script.
So, given the choice of being turned in and going to Impel Down, to my likely execution, or to join an evil man, I made the choice the same way I have made every choice since I was eight years old. I chose to join him so I could survive."
Vivi did not know what to say. She didn't know what she had expected Robin to say, but it wasn't that. Vivi had grown up always trusting the Marines and the World Government, in fact she had always thought if things got bad enough with Crocodile she could just take a boat and go to a Marine base and ask the World Government for help, but if they were willing to do that to Robin's home island, one that didn't do anything, could they really be trusted to save Alabaster and not side with the Warlord?
"You must really hate the Marines." Vivi said out loud, one of her thoughts escaping her brain and exiting her mouth.
"Yes, I do." Robin answered back with little to no emotion.
Vivi breathed through her nose and smiled, she needed to be strong now, for herself, and for Robin.
"Okay, here is what I am going to do. When this is all over and we have stopped Crocodile, I will let you visit the Tomb of the Kings." Vivi looked over and smiled at Robin. "That is where the Poneglyph is. I heard my father talk about it with Chaka in a meeting I was not suppose to be listening in on. I don't know if it will have the information you want, but it is something, right?."
Robin looked up at Vivi and smiled, she blew her nose on her sleeve and dried the tears that had fallen since she had last dried them. "Thank you prin---", Robin caught herself, and corrected herself, "Miss Wednesday. You will make a wonderful queen someday." Vivi smiled and pulled back in line behind Robin.
The rest of the trip to the Spider Café was uneventful.
Before the trip, Vivi had hypnotized Mr. 9 again, this time to make him grow some sort of backbone. He had been a hindrance to her on Jaya Island, and that was not going to work, she needed him to fight, and if needed, die for her. She also toned down his worship of her. He was making it too obvious that she was an important person, something else she had learned during the mission to Jaya Island.
The Spider Café seemed to be a one story building made of wood with a water tower next to it. This region like others were being affected by Crocodile slowly making the entirety of Alabaster dry up thanks to his sand powers and the café could not spare any water thus people in the region started to boycott it which killed business but, made it a great place for Baroque Works to meet.
This was another example of the people of Alabaster turning on each other, something Vivi was seeing on most of her missions. She knew it was Crocodile's fault, but her father's inability to stop it was becoming more and more pronounced. It had Vivi worried about her country.
Vivi and Mr. 9 arrived at the café and parked their camels in the front. The two had separated from Robin about two miles away from the café, as not to raise suspicion to the other members that the three of them were working together. Mr. 9 looked over at Vivi and bit his lower lip. "Are you sure you are ready to do this?" He asked. Vivi nodded her head, she and Robin had planned for this day.
Vivi entered the cafe and coughed, the dry sand and dust of the café having entered her throat. Vivi then looked at the patrons of the café and recognized the only pair sitting in it. One of them, which Vivi could only describe as a strange man, with his hair in the shape of a number 3, was drinking tea. He was Mr. 3 of Baroque Works. He was complaining, something he did quite often, about work.
"I have heard the Unluckies were on Little Garden, keeping an eye on the giants and suddenly two days ago they just stopped reporting. Mr. 5 and Miss Valentine stopped reporting that day as well. The scary thing is that if you follow the path from Whiskey Peak, that is where you would go next." Mr. 3 was referring to the incident where the millions and billions at Whiskey Peak had been taken out by a crew of pirates. A report had come from Igaram and Miss Monday where they had declared the place totally lost to Baroque Works and were just now returning home. Crocodile had not been pleased.
The woman sitting with Mr. 3 was Miss Goldenweek. She was the youngest member of Baroque Works by Vivi's knowledge and hated to do work just like her partner. Whereas Mr. 3 was overly hyper, she was much more chilled out, maybe too much in fact. She was eating a cookie across from him. "If that is where Mr. 0 sends us, so be it. I heard the place has nice weather, and well", she took a sip of tea and looked out a window of the café, "maybe we will actually see rain. I miss rain."
Mr. 3 started to wave his arms frantically at that, "don't say that, Mr. 0 might hear you and he might take you out like he did Mr. 6 and Miss Mother's Day, and if he takes you out, he will take me out. I don't want to end up like them."
Vivi smiled at the news she had heard from the pair. She had been a bit worried about how she would handle the Unluckies, them both being animals, so this was a bit of a load off her mind. Just then Robin entered the café. When she entered the person at the register, Zala, put out the kiseru she had been smoking and put down the newspaper she had been reading while ignoring all the noise.
"You were the last one to arrive Miss All Sunday, everyone else is already downstairs." She said to Robin, Vivi, Mr. 9, Mr. 3, and Miss Goldenweek while motioning to a room below the café. The five nodded and followed Miss Doublefinger as she led them down into the room where the meeting was going to take place.
The group came downstairs and for a moment Vivi was confused because she saw two people who looked like Mr. 1 sitting next to each other. Then Vivi realized what had happened, Mr. 1 was the tanned tall man who had eaten the Dice-Dice Fruit and thus was able to turn his body into blades. If there was anyone beside Miss All Sunday in Baroque Works that Crocodile trusted it was him.
Sitting next to him was his identical twin, except for what he was wearing. This man was the flamboyant, Mr. 2. He had the ability of the Clone-Clone Fruit and could make himself look like anyone he had touched with his right hand. Vivi had so far to her knowledge avoided Mr. 2's hand, but she was not sure how much longer she could come up with excuses not to do it.
So, at the meeting were Mr. 1 through 4, Miss Doublefinger, Miss Goldenweek, Miss Merry Christmas, Mr, 9, Vivi, and Robin. Robin went to the head of the long table the ten people were sitting at and put down a transponder snail. From it would come the voice Vivi had learned to hate.
Before the snail started to speak however, Robin stared at Mr. 2 with a small glare, and Mr.2 looked down and touched his face with his left hand to change back to his normal body.
Robin took the snail off the hook and talked into it. "We are all ready Mr. 0."
"Hahahaha", it began. "It is good to have all the members of Baroque Works currently in Alabaster here isn't it? Well, besides me I mean. Hahahaha. With that fun over, it is time to get down to the business at hand. Mr. 8 and Miss Monday have declared Whiskey Peak a total loss, only a few of the millions were even able to say any thing to the pair, and all they blabbered on about was an green oni, whatever that means.
Little Garden is also looking like a loss, to make sure of that, Mr. 3 and Miss Goldenweek, I want you to go there and access the situation, I am worried that we have not heard from anyone there in days." Mr. 3 at this news started to flail about quietly, he really did not want to go.
"As for the rest of you", Mr. 3 stopped flailing, in respect of the other members. "We will start the operation in one month. Hahahaha. We have Miss Wednesday to thank for this, her expert negotiations landed us a major weapon haul from the Snake Butt herself, Bertrade Gloom. Everyone give her a round of applause." From the transponder snail came slow, loud clapping.
Crocodile was being patronizing to Vivi and Vivi knew it. Robin had explained to him that Vivi had been totally outdone by Bertrade in their negotiations. Vivi had not wanted to tell him, but Robin explained that telling Crocodile about Vivi's failures would make Crocodile less likely to believe the two were working together. Vivi eventually relented and allowed the report to be sent by Robin.
"Hahhahaha. So, besides Mr. 3 and Miss Goldenweek, I want you all in Alubarna in three weeks. We will have an in person meeting where I will go over more details of the operation. Hahahaha. See you soon." The transponder snail then hung up.
Mr. 3 put his shoulders on the table and his eyes in his hands. "I don't want to go to Little Garden. I like it here."
Miss Goldenweek, patted her partner on the back. "There, there", she said.
Robin then stood up and looked at Vivi, making quick eye contact, then nodded. "I have to go contact Mr. 0 real quick about some other matters, I will be right outside this room, so could you all wait here for a moment."
"I hope it is not about me", Mr, 3 said to Robin, hopeful that she would not tell Mr. 0 how he had been acting. Meanwhile, Miss Merry Christmas was getting impatient.
"Really, why, I want to get going." Miss Merry Christmas said in quick succession, after being silent so far, a major accomplishment for her. Miss Merry Christmas was Mr. 4's partner and was part mole on account of eating the Mole-Mole fruit. She was very hyper and wanted to do stuff fast, which made her a strange partner for Mr. 4, a slower individual who fought with the dog gun on his back, Lassoo.
Lassoo was strange even for Baroque Works. He was Mr. 4's gun who had eaten the Mutt-Mutt fruit. The first time Vivi heard that it happened she couldn't help but ask how this had happened. In response Mr. 4 answered, after making Vivi wait almost a minute for an answer, that he didn't know.
Once Miss Merry Christmas took a moment to breathe, Vivi cleared her throat, "ahem", and the rest of the members of Baroque Works looked at Vivi. "I have something to tell you all." Vivi took off the light green overcoat she had been wearing and revealed the spiral shirt below it. "I want you all to watch the spirals."
Vivi started the process of her dance, moving her butt from side to side, slowly, and making her body rotate. She started slowly, and then started to go faster as she started her induction.
"The spirals guide you", Vivi commanded, the members of Baroque Works started to watch the spirals with that line.
"The spirals are all that exist", Vivi said, her voice coming out strong, which was how she wanted it to come out. At this point all the members could see were the spirals.
"You have to watch the spirals", Vivi said, and the member's eyes focused harder, they did not just want to watch the spirals, they needed to.
"They are your everything", Vivi said, and the members focused even harder, the shirt disappeared, all that remained was the spirals.
"I am leading you, by leading the spirals." Vivi said, and the members all agreed, all except one.
"What are you talking about?" Miss Merry Christmas asked.
Vivi's lip twitched, she needed to ignore Miss Merry Christmas for a moment and make sure things were okay for everyone else.
"For the next five minutes, the spirals will disappear, but in there place you will think about me, about Miss Wednesday. You will think how wonderful I am, and how I should lead the Baroque Works." Vivi ordered, then she saw a smile form on the other members faces and knew she was fine. She then looked at Miss Merry Christmas who seemed confused.
"What's going on? Why are they all like this? What do you mean you should lead the Baroque Works? Are you trying to overthrow Crocodile?" Miss Merry Chrismas asked all these questions in rapid succession and Vivi, while not ignoring them, was directing her attention elsewhere, she looked up, out of the room and called out.
"We were right, Miss Merry Christmas is immune, Zoan type users are immune like we feared." She told up the ladder that had led to the basement room the members were in.
Miss Merry Christmas, still sending off quick questions, heard someone coming down the ladder. She looked and saw Miss All Sunday coming back down. Robin stared at Miss Merry Christmas and had a look on her face that looked almost sad.
"So should I do what we discussed?" Robin asked Vivi.
"Yeah, I think that would be for the best." Vivi responded.
Miss Meery Christmas watched Miss All Sunday cross her arms in front of her and speak again. "Dos Fleur." Suddenly, two arms came out of Miss Merry Christmas's shoulders and wrapped them selves around her head. "Clutch", Miss All Sunday said next.
Miss Merry Christmas fell to the ground and Robin frowned. "I know she annoyed everyone of us, but I still liked her", Robin said to herself.
Vivi, not feeling as sad as Robin, snapped her fingers at Robin, "look", she said pointing at the gun on Mr. 4's back. The dog gun was moving around trying to get off his back.
Robin frowned at this, the gun had also eaten a Zoan type fruit. Robin put her arms in position to snap its neck when then she stopped and looked over at Vivi. "I don't think a gun has a neck I can snap."
"Hmm, that is true", Vivi said, thinking for a moment before looking up at Robin. "I, I think we are going to have to dump him." Vivi sighed, "into the ocean".
Robin looked at Vivi, amazed at how cold she was thinking. "I think that is our only choice." Robin responded back.
"Okay, we will have Mr. 4 agree to help us with that, when I get to him", Vivi said, then looked down on a watch she had on her wrist. "I still have two and half minutes left till they come out of the trance and need me to dance again, what should I do now?" She asked Robin.
Robin chuckled and looked at the group of Baroque Works members slowly becoming enamored with Vivi. "Well", she chuckled again, "you can bring Josue out of his trance." Josue was Mr. 9's real name, one that Vivi and Robin had finally thought to ask for on the way to Spider Café.
"Yeah I guess so", Vivi responded. She then walked in front of Josue, "hey Josue, trance over." She said, while slightly slapping him.
Josue's eyes slowly came back to life and he smiled. "Oh thank you Mistress Wednesday." He said.
Vivi paused and smiled, "say that again", Vivi said to Josue.
"Oh thank you Mistress Wednesday." He said, joy in his voice.
Vivi then turned away from him and looked at the other members of Baroque Works still under her power. Robin watched as a massive smile formed on Vivi's face before she spoke, "I like that name."