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Chapter 11-The HeistEdit
The guards on Punk Hazard flipped when they saw the ship with the Jolly Roger they had been warned about appear on the horizon. They got ready to fight, alarms sounding across the island as the Research Facility went into lockdown. The guards scattered throughout the forest between the research facility and the beach the pirates were heading for, readying ambushes and priming traps.
A vanguard massed on the shore as the Thundering Gusto released a launch boat. The Marine vanguard leveled their weapons at the small craft advancing on their shore. Oliver Black grinned over his shoulder at them from where he sat in the head of the boat, "So they've sent out a welcoming committee." He turned back to his crew, "Let's see, Kuina. Take em out." Kuina smiled, "With pleasure." She stood, "Moonwalk!" she disappeared and there was a sudden series of loud pops, almost like gunshots. An instant later she was above the beach. She drew her sword mid air and landed spinning, "Cyclone Slash!"
She moved so fast she would have been invisible had her progress not been slowed by her spinning several times every time she took a step. That didn't hamper her at all though, every spin unleashed a sharp arc of air that moved like a wave, growing and flying at incredible speed and cutting just like a sword. In seconds, the Marine vanguard had been shredded, as had much of the foliage behind them, trees falling several hundred feet into the forest.
She stood on the beach and waited for them. Black turned back to the crew, "Good job Chifu. She's gotten much better." Chifu smiled, "Thank you. She is a very good student." Maria reached over and smacked him, "You should be ashamed of yourself! Teaching a little girl to be a killer." Chifu frowned at her, the strike hadn't hurt him, but it had annoyed him slightly, "I taught her Rokushiki to help keep her alive, and Oliver used his Tik-tik powers so I could do it in a single day. That is far kinder than what was done to me when I was training to become a member of CP9. My entire life was devoted to becoming a merciless killer."
Maria hmphed at him, "That doesn't mean it's right to teach children how to kill." Black looked at her, "Maria, she's been training with a sword her entire life. She already knew how to kill, anything we teach her is just helping her stay alive." Maria frowned, she didn't have a comeback to that.
They landed on the beach a few moments later, and as soon as Max's feet hit the sand he stepped forward, raised a rifle to his shoulder and fired into the trees. Splinters flew from the back of the tree he had shot, and as the bullet flew out the back side of the tree unhindered, a dead Marine collapsed out from behind it. Max grinned and pumped a fresh round into the chamber, the used bullet casing falling out onto the sand.
He and Melanie looked very different than they had a few weeks before. Max had gone from scrawny to well muscled and was clad in the black slacks and jacket of a CP9 assassin after a few weeks of tutelage from Chifu. He had a belt wrapped around his torso diagonally, the special cylindrical bullets he had learned to manufacture in special holsters all along the front of it and filling the pouch at his side. The back half of the strap was a holster for the specially modified rifle he had personally forged with the aid and instruction of Oliver.
He didn't need the gun to fight now, although it was definitely his preferred weapon. He had trained to the point where he could hit a target the size of an eyeball that was set over two miles away without a scope without fail. When he did have a scope, with a sufficiently powerful round he could knock a bird from the air that was so far away it couldn't be seen with the naked eye, and while he hadn't mastered Rokushiki, he was still passably proficient in all its techniques, especially Shave and Rebirth.
Melanie's short brown hair was now well cut and clean, and her ready smile was brighter than ever. She wore a pair of goggles on her forehead, and had armored gauntlets that extended all the way up her arms to her shoulders. The fingers of the gauntlets were surprisingly thin and dexterous, and the armor was impressively sturdy and thick considering how petite she was. She wore a black tank top and tight black pants made of the same incredibly tightly woven and sturdy material Oliver had manufactured for them and claimed was at least partially bullet proof. Her boots, which had been a gift from Max, came up to her knees and were reinforced with metal.
She too had been under Chifu's instruction and had taken to Rokushiki like a duck to water. She was now so proficient that she could actually spar with Chifu, albeit not for long. However, she like Max preferred to fight from a distance, and had discovered upon watching a few, that she loved explosions. She now had a belt laden with pouches full of explosives that she was extremely skilled at throwing, and had launchers built into the armor of her gauntlets for when she needed a particularly long shot.
Maria had changed her appearance as well, she now wore her hair down instead of in a ponytail, and she had traded out most of her Marine Uniform for a blue three piece suit. She had however kept her white jacket, which she wore draped over her shoulders in the manner of a high-ranking marine. It still had the kanji for Justice on its back, but she had allowed Oliver to reinforce it with his special shield cloth, so it now had a black inner layer. She had a revolver at her side, the revolver specially modified to fire the same kind of bullets Max was using.
Maria didn't like using guns, but she acknowledged that they were probably her best defense in a long distance fight, and she was a good shot. She smiled and patted the medical kit at her side, casually sliding her hand around to the darts lining her belt and quickly drawing one and launching it into the carotid artery of the one Marine that was trying to move.
Chifu, Ryori and Kuma hadn't gotten any special armor, but they had each proven so formidable that there was no doubt any of the crew's mind that they could handle anything the world could throw at them. Black grinned and drew his pistols, "Let's make sure we've got their attention." He raised his guns, "Million Hyper Shot!" There was a massive explosion and a radius of foliage a mile deep was suddenly sheared off shoulder high.
Black grinned and holstered his guns, "Well, that was fun." He turned back to the others, "Shall we go now?" They blinked at him in disbelief. They had just gotten there! Suddenly a huge swath of forest burst into flames and Gray appeared next Black, his hat smoking slightly, "Alright, got what we came for. Let's go before the Marines show up."
A Few Minutes Later, En Route to Punk HazardEdit
"WHAAAAAAAT?!" Garp bellowed at the Transponder Snail as the Marines' chief scientist informed him that the Orchard Pirates had just paid him a visit on Punk Hazard. The Transponder Snail shrunk away from him in fear and said with Vegapunk's voice, "Nothing was taken from the lab, or even disturbed as far as I can tell. This seems to have been merely a demonstration of their abilities."
Suddenly a different Transponder Snail right next to the first one rang. Garp answered it, trying to contain his outrage at the Orchard Pirates' beating him to Punk Hazard. The voice of Fleet Commander Kong spoke through the Transponder Snail, "Garp! The Orchard Pirates are storming Firs Island! Get over there now! Vice-Admiral Borsalino is already en-route along with several battle ships. If they steal the Dynastones there's no telling what they'll do with them!"
"WHAAAAAT?!" Garp bellowed before turning and shouting to White who was at the other end of the ship, "OLIVER! We've gotta get to Firs Island right now! The Orchard Pirates have already hit Punk Hazard and now they're attacking Firs Island!" "Right!" Oliver called back, then he yelled, "All hands! Get below deck immediately!" Everyone on deck hurried below deck and as soon as the last person was inside, the ship lurched and the wind howled.
The island's rotating cannon tower was blown apart as Black ignited all the gun powder within it. Gray caught the shrapnel out of the air and hurled it into the Marines swarming the main bridge to the center of the base. The shrapnel flew like knives and Marines fell everywhere it hit.
Max had taken up a position atop one of the island's rock spires and was busily sniping Marines left and right, especially the ones that tried to circle around Melanie to attack Melanie from behind as she launched explosives into the oncoming Marines. Chifu and Kuina were busily bottling up the Marines coming across the main bridge, ensuring that the ones on the ground didn't get any reinforcements as Ryori and Kuma took them apart.
Suddenly, Ryori and Kuma fell back as Maria finished preparing for her ultimate attack atop a rock spire. Her hands glowed with white energy and as she brought them slamming together, a wave of white energy washed over the Marines trying to defend the base. She slumped to the ground exhausted and Ryori and Kuma stood over her to ensure nothing happened to her while she recovered from the massive energy expenditure.
They weren't particularly worried though. The Marines had all been healed to perfect health by the wave, but now they were all sitting around grinning at each other like drugged sheep. She drew a shuddering breath and held herself as Kuma looked down at her, "That was cool. What did you do to them?" She smiled, "I healed them of all the things that drove them to fight. They'll never fight again, never even be angry again! They couldn't pose less of a threat now if I had killed them!"
She shuddered, slightly and gasped, "Hurts like hell to do though." Kuma frowned, "So why did you do it? We could have taken them." Maria smiled, "Because Kuma, they're just doing their jobs. I used to be a Marine, and at heart I still am one. I refuse to kill my former comrades, even if they would not hesitate to kill me." Ryori nodded, "You are indeed an honorable warrior Maria-san." Maria smiled, "Thank you Ryori-san. Kuma-san, help me up." Kuma stooped and prepared to help her stand, "Are you sure?"
Maria pointed, "Oliver may need my help very soon." Ryori and Kuma looked and saw a man in a white jacket and yellow suit standing on the bridge facing down Gray, "That's Vice-Admiral Borsalino; he's on the short list to become an admiral." Kuma and Ryori both flinched slightly, even in secluded Wano Country, they knew the reputation of the Marine Admirals.
Meteor Terror and The Gray Sea DevilEdit
Gray stood on the bridge, facing down Vice-Admiral Borsalino. Borsalino tilted his head to the side lazily, "Hmmm...You must not be very bright," he said slowly. Then he raised a hand very quickly and fired a bolt of yellow light at Gray. Gray drew his sword and intercepted the light bolt with a slash. His sword began to glow and Borsalino frowned, "What just happened?"
Gray brandished his sword, "This is Ryūsei Kyōfū, the meteor terror. I forged it from the heart of a shooting star and the alloy contains sea stone. Needless to say, its death to Devil Fruit users. What are you again?" Before Borsalino could answer, Gray flicked his blade and sent Borsalino's laser back at him as an arc of light that carved a rent down the middle of the bridge.
Borsalino didn't even try to dodge, certain that it wouldn't harm him. Then it slammed into him and knocked him back twenty feet with a broken nose. Borsalino straightened his sunglasses, "Uh-oh." He stood up and looked over his shoulder at the marines as he mockingly raised his hands in fake surrender, "Step back fellas, we got ourselves a badass up here."
He disappeared into a bolt of light that rocketed toward Gray. Gray sheathed his sword and just as Borsalino was about to slam into him at the speed of light, Gray pulled a box out and put it directly in Borsalino's way. Borsalino rocketed right into it, unable to stop or change direction. Before he could reflect back out of it, Gray snapped the box closed.
He balanced it on a corner on the end of his finger and twirled it, smiling at the Marines, "Mirror lined sea-stone box. Word to the wise? Never mess with a Sea Devil." He set the box down and then spread his arms. One arm erupted into flames and the other became a huge fist made of clouds. Oliver's body suddenly turned jet black with Haki, and he snapped forward as the Marines realized he was apparently using at least two Devil Fruit powers at once. That was the last thought that ran through their minds as Oliver shot forward and slaughtered them.
An Hour LaterEdit
Garp, White, Smoker and Hina disembarked and led their crew across the island very carefully. They found the pacified Marines and ordered their crew to take them to the medical bay immediately to figure out what they had been drugged with, then they advanced up to the bridge and found a little box, shaking and shouting. Garp looked at it, "What is that?" White looked closely at it and reared back as he felt its cold radiance beating out at him, "Sea-stone. I can't touch it. It sounds like someone's in there, maybe you should open it sir?"
Garp nodded and lifted the box, aiming it away from him and opening it. A bolt of light exploded out of it and solidified into a very rumpled and disheveled looking Vice-Admiral Borsalino. Borsalino stood up and looked behind him, "Oh, it's you Garp! Come on! We gotta stop them!"
They hurried into the base, detailing their crew to tend to the wounded as they encountered them, passing through several doors on their way to the vault. The doors were thick and made of steel, but they all looked as though they had either been carved open or punched out of their frames, some even had fist shaped dents in them. They advanced across the catwalk to the vault and saw that its door as well had been carved open. It was lying on the ground in front of the vault.
They entered and saw a wall of glowing purple cells. One though, was dark and had a bored looking Transponder Snail sitting in it ringing where the Dynastone had been. Garp angrily lifted the little snail and answered it, "This is Vice-Admiral Garp of the Marines! Who is this?" The transponder snail chuckled, "What a decorated hero they've sent to capture me!"
Garp scowled as the voice continued, "This is Captain Orchard Gray of the Orchard Pirates. This is an ultimatum, not a negotiation. Meet me at noon on Tokeidai Island seven days from now with two hundred and fifty billion berries ransom, and I will return the Dynastone to you. If you do not, I will use the Dynastone on a location you Marines think is secure, just to prove to you that nowhere is safe. Then if you still refuse to pay up, I'll be back for the rest of those Dynastones, and I'll use them too. One a day, every day until you pay up or I run out of things to blow up."
Garp stared in fury and set down the transponder snail to avoid crushing it, "You won't get away with this!" Gray laughed, "I've heard that before. You can try and take it from me if you want, but that won't end well for you." Garp roared, "WE'LL SEE ABOUT THAT YOU BASTARD!"