Pair: Ace x Luffy
Warnings: Brotherly love, boy love, yaoi
A/N: This story was written as a birthday present for a friend of mine who really, really likes Ace x Luffy. Enjoy!
Story Summary: Ace x Luffy. It wasn't just the rain that made Luffy cry.
Disclaimer: If I could really, truly say that I own One Piece, I could die happy.
The day had started off nice enough, but weather in Fushia Village was always unexplainably unpredictable.
It was just about the time that Ace had crawled in bed for the night that he even realized that something was amiss. And when we pulled the covers off his body swiftly and swung his legs over the bed, placing his feet on the ground and hurrying to the window, he noticed the dark patch of clouds rolling in, carrying thunder and lightning with them.
It wasn’t long before a strong wind picked up and blew through the village making the winds chimes blare angrily and causing animals to hide for cover.
And as Ace continued to watch this unfold from the comfort of his bedroom, he was suddenly struck with the thought of what kind of night he was going to go through. Now, it wasn’t like Ace to be scared of a thunderstorm, quite the contrary; Ace was scared of nothing, be it man or nature. The thing that had Ace worried was his brother, Luffy.
Sure, Luffy put on the act like he was tough, but there were some things that made him run to Ace and cower by his side, whispering, “Help me, Ace.” A few of these things included water, which was an obvious choice considering that water could be his downfall should he accidently fall in some, devil fruit or not. Another thing Luffy was afraid of was bees. This was a sourly irrational fear all because Luffy had decided he wanted to climb a tree containing a bee’s nest. Ace had tried frivolously to talk him out of that one. But the biggest thing that really got Luffy scared was thunderstorms.
Ace wasn’t entirely sure why, either. Usually there was a decent reason for Luffy not liking something whether because it tasted bad or had hurt him in the past. But Ace was stumped on this one. He couldn’t recall a time where a thunderstorm had every physically hurt the boy. But all he knew was that every time there was a storm, Luffy would run to him and not say a word until it was all over.
But surely this night would be different. Luffy was getting older, so such a thing as a common thunderstorm shouldn’t scare him too much. That’s what Ace wanted to believe, anyway.
Placing his head on his hand, Ace watched the storm move in fully over the little town. Rain, which had started off calmly enough, now poured menacingly down the street, turning the dirt to mud in seconds. The wind had calmed down a little, but still splattered the windows violently with thick sheets of water, making the outside word blurry and distorted to Ace’s eyes.
And then there was the thunder.
So loud that the world itself seemed to shake, he wondered, idly, if anyone in the village was even asleep after such commotion. But, as he continued to peer out his window, he saw no lights come on in windows, no phones ringing to check on others, nothing.
And then there was the lightning. Bright and sporadic, it clearly illuminated the whole countryside and village itself. It was an intensely awesome sight, Ace had thought, but it was really time for him to be heading off to bed. Best get there before Luffy did and kept him awake indefinitely.
Giving a yawn, Ace turned from the window and seemed to take only one step before … the power went out.
The thunder clap and lightning strike that went with it seemed purely malicious as the whole village was engulfed in darkness. The street lights that had once been shining a weak light on the street and some homes were now dead. Consequently, the small lights of an alarm clock or silent buzz of a radio were now out as well.
“Ah, shit,” Ace cursed, trying to find his way around in the deathly dark room. Thankfully, a well timed flash of lightning alerted to him his position just before he walked right into his closet. Sitting down on his bed, Ace listened intently for any noise from Luffy. Surely, if the boy was going to wake up, he’d be awake by now.
“Or,” Ace spoke aloud, whispering silently in stark contrast to the chaos outside, “Maybe he really has grown up. Maybe he’s finally learned to not be scared of stupid thunderstorms.” And as Ace had that thought, he immediately became saddened by it. Sure, he was happy that Luffy was bold enough to take care of himself now, but to think that he didn’t need Ace anymore … didn’t need him to hold him and tell him everything was going to be all right … it was slightly disheartening. However, this was selfish thinking. Ace shouldn’t want Luffy to get frightened, why … that was rather cruel of him.
So, as he slipped back into his bed, heard the little pitter-patter of feet across the wooden floor, and gathered from the silhouette in the doorway that Luffy had crept from his bed … he felt pridefully embarrassed.
“Are you scared, Luffy?”
Luffy hadn’t said a word when he rushed into Ace’s bed, immediately snuggling tightly against his brother’s side.
Ace was shocked by the sudden intrusion, as he had expected Luffy to gently crawl into bed beside him and curl into his usual ball.
But what was even more shocking to Ace was the dampness of Luffy’s forehead. “Luffy? You didn’t go outside did you?” But of course this wasn’t the case, Ace noticed, as the rest of Luffy’s body wasn’t nearly as soaked. Worried, Ace turned directly to Luffy in the bed and held him out from him.
The young boy kept his head down, hair covering his eyes but showing Ace that his mouth was turned down in an extremely sad frown. And the boy shook violently, making Ace extremely uncomfortable. So much so that when Ace sat up and brought Luffy with him and the shaking only got worse, Ace was scared.
“Luffy!” Ace’s voice octave rose ever slightly, still trying to keep his calm, “Luffy, what’s the matter?!”
It was then that Ace saw a thin stream of tears flow ever steadily from Luffy’s eyes. And when Luffy looked up, sniffling and eyes red only confirming his suspicion, Ace couldn’t take the silent treatment anymore.
“Luffy,” he questioned his brother wildly, scared that something was seriously wrong, “Why are you crying? Please, tell me!”
Luffy’s eyes became small slits as the tears began to escape more freely. His sniffling evolved into sobs, and his body shook even harder. Surely this all couldn’t be from a simple thunderstorm?
Ace wasn’t sure what to do. Usually, Luffy was such a little chatter box, that you couldn’t keep the kid quiet. And his bright eyes, usually so happy and adventurous, were so sad. But Ace couldn’t think of anything to do. Pulling the boy closer, hoping to calm him, the sobbing turned into a full blown crying and, almost immediately, Ace’s shirt was soaked with tears. Luffy’s forehead, Ace noticed, was covered in an extremely cold sweat.
“Please, Luffy,” Ace continued, his eyes starting to water for fear that there really was something wrong with his little brother, “Tell me what’s wrong. Why are you crying?”
“Ace!” Luffy screamed so violently that it echoed the thunder outside and shook Ace suddenly, “Don’t go, Ace!”
“Don’t go?” Ace repeated, not really getting it, “Don’t go where? Where am I going?”
“Don’t go!” Luffy pleaded, grasping Ace’s shirt and yanking on it roughly, “Don’t leave me alone!”
“Luffy, I’m not gonna leave you!” This was beginning to get really scary. No matter what Ace did to try and calm his brother down, the boy would not stop screaming for Ace to not leave him alone. It was terrifying.
But he knew he had to put a stop to it. If he wanted to get to the bottom of this, he knew he had to calm Luffy down. So, grabbing the boy’s face and lining it up with his, Ace said sternly as he could, “Luffy! Calm down and listen to me: Tell me what’s wrong. I don’t understand what you’re talking about.”
The boy’s eyes were wide and his face was warm from crying so harshly. And after an initial emotion of shock, Luffy’s face calmed into a pout as his sniffling increased once more, eyes filling with a fresh batch of tears. Ace immediately caught onto this, however, and held his brother’s head more firmly in place.
“No, Luffy,” he began visibly angry, but finishing soothing, “Tell big brother what’s wrong.”
It had taken a couple minutes to get Luffy to settle down enough where he could actually talk to him. Sitting up straight, Ace took the boy into his lap and waited for Luffy’s explanation on things. When he got nothing, however, Ace took it upon himself to interject a reason for Luffy’s behavior: “Was it the storm?”
Luffy only nodded his head and buried himself deeper into Ace’s chest.
“Was it because the power went out?”
Again, Luffy only shook his head.
“Well, little brother, I’m lost then. I have no idea what has got you so riled up.”
“I thought you were leaving,” Luffy whispered quietly into Ace’s body, words almost lost, “and never coming back.”
“And where’d you get a silly idea like that?”
“I … I …,” Luffy tried, lifting his head up, but not looking at Ace, “I had a nightmare about it.”
“A nightmare? Silly, that’s all it was.”
“No!” Luffy screamed again, pushing himself away from Ace and looking straight into his eyes, anger and fear showing clearly, “I know that you’re going to leave me! I’ve heard your plans to become a pirate and go out to sea!”
Ace had to laugh at this. Luffy simply had to be joking. “Of course I’m going to leave one day,” the older boy smiled widely, “But so are you. And, besides, that’s one day. It’s not like I’m leaving tomorrow.”
“Well, I … I know that,” Luffy responded, tears drying up, “But … in my dream, you … just left one day and … you didn’t say goodbye to me or anyone else in the village, and ….”
Luffy paused, obviously wondering what words were appropriate to relate to his brother. And Ace looked on in wonder, hoping to figure out the real reason Luffy was crying. The boy knew he was leaving, so there had to be a greater reason.
“And … I was alone. I mean, really alone. I tried to find Shanks, but he was gone, and I tried to find Makino, but she was gone too. And then you … you said, in my dream, ‘Wait here, Luffy. I’ll be back before you know it!’ And I waited there for a long time, and you left me you … you never came back!”
Ace looked on sadly as Luffy eye’s filled with a new batch of tears, this time spilling freely without so much as a warning. “Luffy …”
“And I was alone! There was nobody there anymore! And no matter where I went looking for you, I just kept getting lost!”
It was unexpected, but had the desired effect. When Ace pressed his lips firmly on Luffy’s, kissing the boy with everything he had, Luffy’s eyes grew wide before settling closed in exhaustion.
Wrapping his arms around the boy and pulling him closer, Ace kept a firm hold on the small frame while prodding the lips open carefully with his tongue. Luffy moaned deeply into this, and Ace could remember tasting what was indefinitely Luffy and salt from the boy’s tears.
Lying down while pulling the small boy atop himself, Ace never broke the kiss as he smoothed Luffy’s messy hair with hand and caressed and rubbed his back with the other. Luffy easily gave into Ace, collapsing on top of him with no tenseness in his movements and holding his shoulders tightly.
When Ace broke the kiss for air, Luffy immediately ask, “Are you scared too, Ace?”
Ace wasn’t sure how to follow this question moreover comprehend why Luffy was asking it in the first place. “Huh?”
“Your heart’s beating like mine was when I woke up from the nightmare. That means you’re scared, right?”
He didn’t want to admit it or, rather, tell Luffy the reason why his heart was beating like it was. Ace already knew that he held an unnatural love for his brother, but he just couldn’t help it. This boy, his little brother, stirred emotions up in him that no other person had before. Even when he admitted this to Makino, and she had told him not to tell anyone, especially Luffy, he was torn. He wanted to let Luffy know, he wanted him to feel the same way, but surely that was highly unlikely.
But more than that, he never wanted to lose the relationship he had with his brother. If he told him that he liked him liked him, he wasn’t sure what kind of response he’d get. And Luffy was the only person he had left in the world.
So, fake smile covering up his feelings, Ace lied to his brother with a small, “Yes, Luffy. I’m scared too.”
Luffy looked into his brother’s eyes with sudden concern. “Really?” he asked, pulling himself closer to his brother.
“Yeah,” Ace continued, wrapping his hands wearily around the boy, “But you know what? I’ll be ok.”
“Huh?” Luffy’s eye’s were full of questioning want, mouth shaped in a small “o” as he cocked his head to one side.
“I’ll be ok because,” Ace continued, smiling genuinely, “I’ll never be alone. Because I’ve got you, Luffy.”
“You see, no matter how far away I am from you, and no matter how hopelessly lost and alone I feel, I’ll always think back to you and remember that I’m never alone. Because, Luffy, you’re always here … in my heart.”
And Luffy smiled. Happy, for the first time all night.
Jumping on his brother more fully, Luffy squeezed Ace as hard as he could. “You’re right, Ace!” And, leaning his head up, kissed his brother on the lips just like he had done to him.
Ace leaned into the kiss opening his mouth once more and prodding around in Luffy’s. And just as he was ready to pull away, hoping Luffy wouldn’t notice the obvious erection in his pants, Luffy held on to around Ace’s neck, “I love you, Ace. More than anyone.”
“I love you all the same, little bro,” Ace ruffled Luffy’s hair, trying to pull the boy off.
“No, I mean, I love you love you.”
Ace couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Surely, this was his mind playing tricks on him. There was no way Luffy was telling him this. But when Luffy slipped himself under Ace, arms still hooked around his neck, eyes saying something Ace was having a difficult time registering, face flushed a sudden red … there was definitely something there.
“I’ll be ok,” Luffy’s voice was almost inaudible, but confident all the same, “Because I’ve got you. Forever.”
Ace smiled. To think his brother was capable of saying such romantic things? “Hm, you definitely got your sweet talking from me, little brother.” And as Ace leaned down for another kiss, and one thing lead to another, the night and it’s storm were lost to the two brothers and their activities.
“You were scared of the storm too, weren’t you?”
“No I wasn’t!”
“Sure, sure. That nightmare wasn’t the only reason you came in here, was it?”
“Shut up, Ace!”
“Ahhhh! What was that?!”
“Hahaha! See? I told ya!”
Luffy woke suddenly to the crackling of thunder and lightning bellowing angrily outside the ship’s walls. Looking around the men’s cabin, he was alerted, quite clearly, to the fact that no one else had been woken up by the storm.
Breathing deeply, he had never told his nakama about his slight, and ever so slight, fear of thunderstorms. But … he was getting better about it. Because every time he was in the middle of one of these storms, Luffy remembered the night long ago in Fushia Village.
So, laying his head back down on his pillow, Luffy pulled the covers tightly around his body and smiled, “Good night, Brother.”
A/N: I just can't help it, I can't write anything but fluffy cuteness for these two. Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed it!
- Thunderstorms written by Danielle (aka: ProfessorHojotheGEN-I-US)