The tavern was loud and merry as the red hair pirates were enjoying their feast. Rockstar down his cup before slamming it onto the table.
“Ah… that hit the spot.” He sigh as he look over at the door.
“I wonder how our old Capt’an is doing?”
“I’m sure our idiot captain is doing fine. He can be a real sweet talker to the ladies.” Yassop spoke beside him.
“I doubt that. Sure he’s a damn good sweet talker but we are talking about the one woman he’s truly love and admire. That fool is going to look like an idiot in front of her!” Lucky Roo spoke with his mouth full and took another bite of the turkey leg.
“Hahaha! You’re right! I remember how he acted when Evolet came and surprise him on that island. Always trying to drink her under the table and throwing every cheesy pick up line there is.” Yassop agreed as he chug down his drink. Benn nodded with a smile.
The door slammed open and before anyone had time to react, a voice yelled from the top of his lungs.
“SHE SAID YES!” The red hair pirate crew stood there in silence, staring at the bare chest captain with his damp cloak and pant. Cheers quickly follow after as drinks were shove before Shank face.
“Congrat old man! Here’s a drink on me!”
“I can’t believe it!”
“So is she coming on board with us, Capt’n?”
“When the wedding?” Many of his crew bombarded their captain with many questions but Shanks just grabbed a cup to gulp it down before wiping his mouth. At first he was mighty proud with a biggest smile he ever bore. Then he slowly frown as a realization hit him.
“She said yes…” He muttered.
“Uh… that’s what you told us.” Rockwell said as he watch his captain slowly slump down to his chair.
“We are doing this…. Tomorrow… Our first date… I didn’t think I get this far… What am I going to do!?!” Shank said in a state of panic as he starts pacing the room with his crew observed him with a knowing smile.
“I told her we’ll go on a date tomorrow but I don’t have any plans! I need this date to be special. Different from all the rest! Oh my god! What am I going to do?!” Shank grabbed a handful of hair before Benn stopped his overrated pacing by placing his hand on Shank shoulder.
“Stop freaking out, Shanks. We’ll help you out.” Benn muttered with a small smile.
“Really?” Shanks asked as he look around the room of his smiling crew member as they all nod their heads.
“Man you guys are the best crew ever!” Shanks cheered as they sat him down at the table.
“Ok so first thing first, we need to get Shanks into a nice suit and have him go to Evolet place with a huge bouquet of her favorite flower…” Yasopp started before he was interrupted.
“No, no, no… too formal. We got to get Shanks to the bath house and give him a scrub down and some clean clothes as well as a makeover… Shank would turn into a completely different man!” Benn said with a small smirk at the end.
“Evolet wouldn’t want that. We should get some fancy restaurant all to themselves with a bunch of yummy food and drinks and have them go out stargazing. Better yet! Have the dinner outside with tons of candles! Women love candles.” Lucky Roo chimed in as he waves his turkey leg around.
“It sounds like a great idea you guys but....” Shanks sigh as he place his head under his palm.
“Evolet is not just any other woman I’ve been with. She is one of a kind. She is fun. She’s kind. She has an adorable laugh and beautiful smile. She is dangerous and a badass chick. She has her own charm and she always see things differently. Her beautiful dark hair and deep brown eyes. The way she walk and after all those years… She still smell like lavenders.” Shanks smile as he let out a long sigh just thinking of her. The crew all look at each other and smile, knowingly.
“Look like our captain got it really bad.” Lucky Roo chuckled as the other nodded their head in agreement.
“Tell us what she like and we’ll help you out as best as we can.” Yassop said as he place his hand on his arm.
“But I think I would be the best man for the job. I know a lot about romance and I did manage to woo a beautiful woman to be my wife.” Yassop boasted.
“Yeah, yeah, yeah… We all know about that. Come on we have less than twenty hours to plan this date!” Rockstar commanded as the crew all huddle together to plan this amazing, romantic, one of the kind date.
Evolet blink slowly as the rising sun peak through the window. She yawned and stretch before sitting up. She look over to the couch to see that Shanks no longer there. But a messy attempts to folded up blanket lay at the end of the couch. She quickly scan around the room to see him gone.
“Must be getting ready for the date.” Evolet mutter with a smile.
“I guess I should get ready as well.” She said as she hopped out of bed and head to the closet. She open the door as some of the moths flew out of it. Evolet sweat drop at this as she closed the door to the empty closet.
“Right… No clothes. I think I can go to the village and find something nice to wear.” She spoke as she grabbed a small bag full of money and was about to head out the door when there was a knock.
“Shanks? Is it that time already?” Evolet thought out loud as she opened the door. She was surprised to see a small group of woman with a large smile spread across their face. Before Evolet could ask, they all push themselves inside and push her to the bathroom.
“H-Hey! What’s the big idea?!” Evolet shouted over her shoulder to the women that is pushing her in.
“Shanks told us to help you get ready for the date today.” The young blonde girl said with a big smile. She place her hands to her cheeks and sort of squeal of delight.
“It’s so sweet and romantic of him to do that.” Another woman commented while the other nodded.
“Doing what? He’s not going over the top is he- who am I kidding, of course he would.” Evolet muttered as they strip her down and get her in the tub once it was full. They scrubbed her down with much of Evolet protest saying she can bathe on her own.
“There’s no time if we ever want to get you ready in time!” The blonde girl said as Evolet stepped out of the tub and was immediately rubbed dry with a towel.
“Now closed your eyes and no peaking!” The girl said. Giving up, Evolet comply to their wishes as they help her get dress and started working on her hair and make-up. Finally they pulled her up and held up a mirror that was hanging in the closet.
“Open your eyes, Miss Evolet.” One woman said. Slowly she opened them as glace up to a brown hair woman in front of her. She blinked a few time before realizing that she was staring at her own reflection. She was wearing soft sandy sandals with her flowy blue empire dress. There were some flowers loosely braided in with her dark brown hair.s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/o…
“Wow,” Evolet gasped as she raised her hand to her face. “I can’t believe that’s really… me.” All the women in the room smile with pride of their completed work. Then there was knocking at the door.
“He’s here!” The young girl cried with delight as she started to push Evolet toward the door before running back to the group. Evolet open the door to see Shanks nervously combed his hair with his fingers, trying to keep his hair in place. He sees Evolet and just froze. He could see sparkles and flower petals swirling around her. She was drop dead beautiful.
“Uh… Shanks?” Evolet quietly asked with a soft smile planted on her rosy lips. Shanks was still staring at her before a pebble was knocked to his head. Shanks jolted out of his thought as he looks toward to the pebble was thrown. Yassop and Rockstar was mouthing the word ‘Give Evolet the flower’ while making gestor with their arms. Shanks jump out of his thought and grabbed the bouquets of flower that was tucked under his stub arm when he was trying to fix his hair.
“H-H-Hi EvoLET!” Shanks squeaks before pausing to clear his voice.
“I-I mean good evening, My Lady. I have brought you some flowers for you.” Shanks spoke with great poster and a charming smile as he handed her the bundle of roses.
“Oh, thanks you. I’ll put them in water. Be right back.” Evolet said as she smells the freshly cut roses.
“We can do that. Just go on your date now. Have fun!” The young girl grabbed the bundle of roses before shooing Evolet out of the house and slam the door behind her. Evolet look down to see Shanks was dressed up in a suit. His ties are tuck tight around his neck with his black suit jacket all button up. He looks sharp, clean and poise. Shank offer her his arm as Evolet gladly accept and they started walking toward the village.
“You look very handsome Shanks. Have you always had that suit?” Evolet asked as she peer up at him, catching him in the act of staring at her. Shanks quickly turn away, hopping she wouldn’t see his growing blush.
“Uh, n-no I’ve borrowed it for the night. I just wanted to make tonight special.” Shank force out a chuckled and continued walking. Evolet frowned a bit but said nothing.
“Complement her!” A harsh whisper coming from the bushes behind them made Evolet look back. She softly rolled her eyes at them.
‘Of course, his crew would be involved. Shank must be really nervous to allow them to shadow us.’ Evolet chuckled as Shanks straighten up again and turned to her.
“You loOK VERY PRETTY!” Shank Yelled at the end and then he went red again.
“S-sorry, I didn’t mean to yell. I panic a bit.” Shanks apologies while looking away. If he had his other arm, he would be slapping himself with it. Evolet smile as she squeezed his arm mean fully as Shank look back at her.
“Thank you, Shanks.” She beamed up at him. Shanks usual goofy smile returned as they continued walked with Shanks crew carefully following them.
Shank lead her to the fancy restaurant in town with candles display all around the grounds.
“Wow.” Evolet awed at the flickering lights that softly glow their way to the building.
“Table for two.” Shank said with a polish tone.
“Name?” The middle age waiter said with a slight bore tone.
“Shanks.” Then the two of them saw the waiter eyes widen as he straightens up when he heard the name.
“R-Right, sir! My apologies! We were expecting you. Follow me.” The waiter lead them through the building to a small private garden. Rose hedges surround the garden and fences overlooking the ocean as the sun were barely visible. More candles were flickering around the area as some were on the ground while other were hanging. A set table is beckoning them over in the center of the garden. Shank rush over to pull out a chair for Evolet. She smiles as she sat down and let Shank push her in before sitting down across from her.
“May I interest either of you with some wine?” The waiter asked them.
“Yes. The finest wine you got!” Shank ordered. The waiter nodded as he stepped away.
“Wow, Shanks. You really outdid yourself here.”
“Yeah, I sure did!” Shank chuckled nervously as he watched from the corner of his eyes to his crew mates for some help. Lucky Roo stood up a bit and pointed to his meat.
‘Talk about food!’ He mouthed. Shanks nodded and look at the menu. He tries to read them but they were too many fancy words he didn’t know what he was even looking at. He glances up at Evolet who seem to know what the hell that is on the menu. He started fiddling with his tie a bit before another pebble hit him on the head.
‘Stop fiddling with the tie and talk. To. HER!’ Yassop gestured as he pointed to Evolet. She then looks up and the crew hid just as she glances over to the spot.
“Beautiful night we are having.” Shank nervously spoke out.
“Yes. It is a wonderful night.” Evolet agreed.
“You – uh, did I ever told you how beautiful you are tonight?” Shanks asked.
“Yes, shortly after I said you looked very handsome in your suit.” She smiles. Shank panic as he nervously went for his tie again, trying to let out some hot air that is building inside his shirt. Again, a pebble hit his head. He turned angrily at his crew before the waiter came over with a bottle of wine. He pours some in there for them as Shank take some generously.
“Ah… this is some good wine.” Shank forced out. Truthfully, he didn’t like it all that much. But he forced a smile as Evolet took a sip and smile politely.
“Yes, this is good.”
“Are you two ready to order?”
“Yes, I would love to have… um… this one!” Shank pointed at the random order as the waiter nodded and scribble it down. Evolet ordered hers and then the waiter left. A moment later, awkward silence followed.
“So… um…” Shank try to think of something to say but nothing was coming out. A familiar tune they know so well filled the silence. They look over to see one of Shank crew all dressed up and playing the violin. Then they heard Yasopp harshly whisper to the violinist.
“Why are you playing the Bin Sake song?! Play something romantic!” Yasopp growled out.
“It’s the only song I know!” The violinist answered back. Yasopp got out of the bushed to dragged him away. Evolet and Shank watch the scene before them as they return their focus at each other. Shank was mentally making a note that he is going to kill them later.
“So… anything new with you?” Shanks asked who is desperately trying to fill the silence.
“Um… not really. Just wandering around aimlessly, hoping to run into Luffy again.”
“Ah… how is that kid doing?” Shanks asked. Evolet chuckled as she leans over to him.
“Not much has changed about him to be honest. He is still pure of heart and telling everyone that his is going to be the next pirate king. He been wanting to see you for a long time.” Evolet explained.
“Ha-ha! He’s still on that?” Shank laugh as he imagines Luffy running up to people and shouting to them about him being the next pirate king.
“Yeah. He’s a goofy kid but I was surprise when I saw him before he left to the New World.”
“Oh?” Shanks asked as he lean in as well. Evolet smile lower as she leans back a bit, looking down at her glass of wine.
“Two years after Ace’s died, I happened to see Luffy while I was with Rayleigh. After losing his brother like that… his smiles seem to be a bit bigger than before. I-I wasn’t sure if it because he saw me after all those years apart or he seem to regain his dream again. Someone so young as him… continuing to go on after that tragic loss…” Evolet stopped talking as she notices a droplet fell into the wine glass. She reaches up to see her cheek were wet and quickly wiped them away.
“Sorry.” She quickly says but Shanks reach out and cupped her face with his hand and gently wiped away her tears.
“It’s fine. I understand.” Shank reassured her. She smiled as she places her hand over his.
“Sometimes, I get a bit jealous of him.”
“Who? Luffy?” Shanks asked with a hint of surprised.
“Hehe, yeah. But he’s a bit younger than me so he didn’t get the chance to experience much of life grief. But in two years, he has gotten so much stronger and braver. He was moving forward a lot faster than I was since I was cursed.” Evolet explained as she looked away. Shanks moved his hand under her chin and force her to look at him.
“Luffy would have never gotten his far without you cheering him on. You are an amazing woman and Luffy is lucky to spend his childhood growing up with you.” Shank spoke with great seriousness in his voice. The two of them could hear one of the crew ‘awed’ at them follow by a harsh shushing noise. The two of them pull away from each other. Before Evolet could say anything, the waiter brought the food over.
“Thank goodness! I’m completely starved!” Shanks cheered as he grabbed is fork, ready to dig in. When the lids were lifted to reveal his meal. Shank deflated at the poor sight he was seeing. Sitting in the middle of his large plate was a nugget of meat with some cook carrots and sauce sprinkle over. He could finish his whole plate in one bite. He glances over to Evolet plate to see she has suffered similar fates.
“Uh… excuse me sir? I don’t think you guys finish setting our plates.” The waiter paused as he quickly did a double take on each of the plates.
“No, sir. Your order is complete. Is there anything else you need?”
“Uh… No thank, we’re good.” Shank force out as he turns to his plate, frowning at the sad sight.
‘I paid a pretty penny for this meal and it look like leftover scraps.’ Shank sourly thought at his plate. He glances up to see Evolet worry frown.
“Looks DELIOUS! Let’s EATS!” Shank announce as he digs in. Evolet watch as he struggles to cut his small piece of meat that he is shaking the table.
“Hey, want me to help you with that?”
“No, I’m fine!”
“Here, let me hel- “Evolet spoke as she reaches over the table to help Shanks but he pushes her hand away. She accidently knocked over the tall candle onto the table which quickly caught on fire.
“Oh NO!” Evolet gasped. Shanks grabbed his wine and dumped it onto the fire but it burst even higher. Evolet tries to blow it out but a breath of fire came out which made it bigger.
“You can breathe fire?!” Shank stood in shocked as he stood up, fanning the fire down.
“Eh… It’s kind of new thing I do now.” Evolet sheeply said as she scratched her head. Before he yells for help, something dripped on his head. He looks up just in time for the other drip on his cheek. A clap of thunder echo throughout the night as a heavy shower quickly pour on them.
Evolet shriek at the sudden cold. The fire on the table has finally cease as Shank stood there in humiliation. His hair fell over his face as he didn’t know what to do now. He looks up to tell Evolet that their first date is over but stopped at the sight of her. She was smiling. Laughing even. Twirling around in the rain as she looks up to the sky. It was like she was dancing with the rain. She stopped dancing as she looks over to Shanks. She slowly walked up to him with a sly smile on her face. She stopped toe to toe with him as she snakes her hand up his shirt, stopping at the tie. She unties them and tore it off him. She unbuttons from the top and stopped mid-way.
“E-Evolet?” Shank spoke as knots were forming in his stomach and his heart were racing. She looks up to him with his warm, summer earthly glow of her eyes. Smile never leave her perfect lips as she reaches her hand up to his face. A sudden poke on his nose jolt him out of trance as she ran away from him.
“Tag! You’re it!” Evolet giggled.
“OI! You can’t just do that to me and- “
“Blah, blah, BLAH! All talk and no action!”
“You are SO going to regret that!” Shank growled out of his parted smile as he started chasing her out of the restaurant… the garden and soon they were entering the forest.
“Oh yeah? Then come and get me!” She giggled as she leads him deeper in the forest. The rain as started to lighten up as the two of them came to a clearing. Shank reach out and tripped over a root, sending them both tumbling down a hill. Once they stopped at the bottom, they both started laughing. Evolet sat up and look at Shank.
“There you are!” Evolet said with a poke on his nose.
“Huh?” Shank sat up as he looks at her questionably.
“I couldn’t find Shanks all night! I thought you set me up with your boring twin brother at the dinner table.” Evolet stated to him. Shank pause before letting out a short chuckle.
“Yeah… I guess I haven’t been myself. Turning myself into someone I’m not.” Shank said as he combed his mud filled hair back.
“Look like you are not going to get your money back for that suit.” She stated. Shank look down to see his suit is indeed ruined. All muddy, cut and torn. He looks over to Evolet and chuckled.
“I could say about your dress as well.” Evolet look down at herself and see her dress is all muddy as well. Her hair clumps with water, mud and some trigs sticking out. The flowers that were gently place in her hair earlier were either gone or were missing their petals. Strands of her hand clings to her face as Shank reach up and brushed off to the side. She leans her head against his large hand as she places her hand over his. Then she pulled him up as she smiles up to him.
“Dance with me.”
“But… there’s no music.” Shank stated as Evolet place his hand to her waist and she place her hand to his shoulder and the other to his empty sleeve to raise up as they were holding hands.
“But we do. Listen to the crickets stringing their music as the toad sings along. And our heart is our percussion.” She stated as she started swaying to nature music. Shank smile as he pulled her close as he slid his hand to her head and gentle force her to his chest.
“Then listen to my song beating so loudly from my chest.” Shank mumbled out. Evolet smile as they gently sway side to side. Each closing their eyes, enjoying this moment. Evolet slowly open her eyes to see the fireflies flying around them.
“Shank! LOOK! Aren’t they beautiful?” Evolet gasped. But Shank pay no mind to them. All his was focusing on is her. And only her. He still couldn’t believe that he is here with her. He is praying with all his might that this is not one of his many dreams he had with her.
“Yeah… beautiful.” Shank slowly said, watching her every expression and moment.
“Oh! Look! There is a small lake.” Evolet pointed out which neither of them knew until the full moonlight shine through the dark clouds, revealing the lake.
“Come on! Let’s go for a swim.” Evolet stated as she pulled him down with him. There was a deck as Evolet let go of Shanks and run down the deck. She jumps off at the end, submerging down to the dark water before popping up for air.
“Come on in Shanks! The water is perfect!” Evolet beckons him. Shanks chuckled as he drops his jacket and took off his shoe before jumping in.
“Cannon ball!” Shanks shouted as a huge splash of water spray everyone. Evolet squeal in delight as she waits for Shank to resurface. But it seems like he is taking a while now. Evolet smile quickly drop as she was ready to dive in to save him but she felt a hand grabbed onto her and pull her down. She looks around the dark water and faintly see Shank struggling not to laugh underwater as the two of them swim up to the surface.
“Shank! Don’t do that! You scared me!” Evolet playfully smack him as he bellows out a laugh.
“Sorry! Sorry! I promise I wouldn’t do that again.” He promised.
“You better!” Evolet said as she splashed him.
“Oh, you wanna go there, missy?” Shank said as he splashed her back. The two of them continued to swim around and play around the water before Shanks grabbed her hand mid splash and pulled her close. The two of them stare at each other for what seem like forever. Shank slowly lean down to Evolet face as their forehead were touching.
“Evolet…Please don’t let me wake up if this is all just a dream.” Shank whispered with a hint of pain at the end.
“Shank, I can assure you this is not a dream.” Evolet said as they wrap themselves closer. Then she reaches up and pinched his cheek.
“See? Not a dream. I’m right here, in front of you. In your arm and about to kiss you. Right now.” Evolet softly said as she inches closer to his lips before kissing him. Shank eyes widen before quickly melted into her lips. It was soft as he had always imaging them to be. He gently holds her face to melt even more into the kiss. It was gentle and slow which he did not expect. After chasing after her for years, he expected him to turn into this hot and passionate kiss but this was so much better. Better than all the dreams he had all those year the moment he knew that he was in love with this woman.
Evolet broke the kiss as she gently swims to the shore line, pulling him with her. They didn’t spoke when they got of the lake. Nor did they do when they walked through the forest all the way up to her cottage. Or when they strip of their wet cloth that lay carelessly on the floor as they continued where they left off, tangled up in the bed.