Huge ups to @Flower for keeping this idea going! Below is what I submitted for the contest before none of y’all joined in 🙄 Enjoy! Or don’t; I get paid either way.
“Feh!” a man spat as he stood above another defeated swordsman, his third of the day. “No strong opponents, no strong booze...what’s this place even good for?” His sharp eyes, shaded by both the black bandanna he wore and the jagged green bangs that slipped out from under it, narrowed as he stared at the sky.
“Waaah, so cool!” a man whispered from behind a tree nearby, tears streaming down the eyes underneath his sunglasses. “Yosaku!” he said as he nudged his partner beside him. “Did you see how effortless that was?!”
“I saw it,” the other man replied, a grim look on his face. “He was...impossible to miss.”
“We should ask him to join us!” the first man said gleefully. “Can you imagine the big bounties we’d be able to take down with him on our side?”
The second man shook his head. “There’s no way he’d wanna work for us, Johnny. Look at him - that’s not someone who takes orders from anyone else.” Before Johnny could respond, Yosaku pointed at the swordsman’s back as he began walking away, stopping only to look around as if unsure of which direction he needed to go. “Besides, he-HEY!”
Yosaku’s eyes popped out of his head as he realized his partner had left the cover of the giant trunk and raced over to the swordsman. “That was...absolutely incredible!!” Johnny gushed. “What’s your name?!”
“Zoro,” the man said with a sour face. “You know where I can find some liquor? Or maybe some meat?”
“I know how you can make enough money to keep you drunk for weeks,” Johnny replied gleefully as Yosaku suddenly appeared by his side, his hand behind his head and his eyes downcast. “Become bounty hunters like us!”
Zoro squinted as he squared the two men up. “I don’t need the money *or* the trouble. I’m looking for someone specific...have you heard of the man with eyes like a hawk?”
Impressed by his effortlessly cool demeanor and completely ignoring his question, Yosaku responded, “We can help you! Not to brag, but we’re known around these parts for tracking down our targets without fail!” He and Johnny struck a pose, both flexing their left arms as they intertwined with one another and shouted in sync, “WE’RE JOHNNY AND YOSAKU, THE SILENT HUNTERS!!”
Despite being put off by their contradictory behavior, Zoro grimaced and continued, “Listen!! If you know of Hawk Eyes, I’d appreciate you telling me where to find him. Otherwise, I’m happy to draw the information out of you...by force...” His scowl turned into a sneer as he reached for the three hilts on his right hip, exuding a bloodlust that could be felt for miles.
This same sensation sent shivers up Johnny and Yosaku’s spines. “Woah, all right! There’s no need for that,” Johnny said hastily, waving his hands in the air. “We HAVE heard of Hawk Eyes, but we’ve never met him, we swear!”
“You’d do well not to tamper with that guy, Zoro,” Yosaku added nervously. “I can tell you’re strong, but he’s on another planet! He owns one of the only black blades in the world!”
To the duo’s surprise, this made Zoro grin. “Exactly why I wanna cross mine with his. If I can beat him, I can fulfill my dream...there’s no way I’ll lose before-“
Johnny and Yosaku didn’t see the man leaping out from the same tree they’d previously hidden behind before he was upon Zoro, their blades sparking when they clashed. “WAAAAH!!” they cried as they embraced each other.
“So,” the stranger said calmly, “it’s Hawk Eyes you seek, ehh?” His wavy red hair danced in the slight breeze as he stared Zoro down. “What makes you think you can stand on his level?”
“Who are you?” Zoro asked as Johnny and Yosaku cowered behind him.
“Nobody important,” the stranger responded. “Just someone who knows what that man is capable of...if you want to cross your sword with his, you’ve got to fortify your mind as much as you do your weapon.”
Zoro noticed that the man’s left arm appeared to be missing under his tunic. “Is he responsible for mangling you like that?”
The stranger smiled confidently. “Nah, I sacrificed that for a greater cause. Beating an invalid won’t get you any closer to defeating him, though.”
“We’ll just have to see if that’s true,” Zoro replied before charging towards the mysterious man, his swords flying out of their scabbards as he prepared to slash. Johnny and Yosaku were yelling behind him - the words “emperor” and “infamous” were all he could hear over the adrenaline coursing through his veins. “SHISHI...SONSON!!”
Three blades spun gracefully through the air before meeting the one held by the stranger as if attracted by some preternatural force. “That can’t be all you have,” he grinned, infuriating his opponent.
In his frustration, Zoro leapt backwards, crouched down, and jumped directly at the stranger again with weapons outstretched. “ONI...GIRI!!”
Again, their swords clashed; again, Zoro was clearly exerting more effort than the other man. “You can’t win against him!!” Yosaku’s voice finally cut through. “He used to be Hawk Eye’s rival!!”
Zoro turned his head, stunned. “What?! This man...was his rival??”
“In another life,” the stranger’s voice breathed down Zoro’s neck. When he turned back to face the interloper, a sudden chill shot through his body, virtually paralyzing him where he stood. “I’ll admit, most people wouldn’t still be conscious...maybe there is something you could do against Hawk Eyes. I’ll be sure to remember your name...Zoro.”
With that, the stranger began walking away. Zoro remained in place, still trembling from the force of the intense spirit he just felt. “I...will surpass you!” he shouted at the man’s languid auburn locks. “I will surpass Hawk Eyes! Mark my words, I will be the strongest swordsman in the world!” He found himself breathing heavily as the man continued walking until he became nothing more than a speck on the coastline.
Resolute and reinvigorated, Zoro swiveled to ask Johnny and Yosaku something...until he noticed the two crumpled on top of one another on the ground. “Wake up, you weaklings!!” he screamed as he kicked the partners, who yelped as they returned to the world of the waking. “I need you to do me a favor.”
“A-anything,” Johnny choked weakly as he stood and dusted himself off, Yosaku rising beside him.
“Do you have a ship?”
“We do,” Yosaku coughed.
Once again, Zoro smiled, freshly determined. “Let’s go out to sea and hunt some bounties...I’ve got a feeling there are a few interesting people I need to meet!!”
Uhh, I don't get notifications from this site, and if I dont check, I do things late. Anyway, uhh, here's my entry. Mostly just fighting...
**Universe is set in one piece theme. Like Pirate King / Devil fruits and stuff. Just that the the straw hats or anything actually character or lore specific is different.
“What makes you think the result will change,” a man with a wild mustache that completely drooped over his mouth would say. His tired red-tinted eyes would shine a yellowish glint as they observed the opponent in front of them. Despite having his hands behind his back, and standing erect before her like a defenseless tree, all parts of him could not be any more on guard.
“What makes you think it’ll be the same Harold,” a girl with the wild blonde hair responded. She wore a shirt that was both tight and had exceptional cleavage for her age-- 17. Her fists were raised equal to her eyes like a boxer in a ring.
A ring that they were both in. One unlike any either of them had before. This ring had instead of wire, people-- town folk from all over the town watching with electrified anticipation of the battle. Unlike the last battles that had occurred between the two, this one had a different aura to it. They believed that she could actually win.
“Hmph. Arrogant as always. Well, I’m ready when you are, Violet,” the man would reply. He had sensed it too, just like the crowd around him, this might be the fight. This thought both angered him off as well as made him glad. To believe he would lose to a girl a hundred years too young to beat him. To believe he would lose to a girl a hundred years too young to beat him!
In the following second when the words left his mouth, Violet would disappear from the location she was. Only a dusk cloud was left as she dashed at crazy inhumane speeds at the man. He, in crazy anticipation, would move his hands to punch the incoming target, with such speed that only after images of where they were showed that they had moved. The two forces would meet, the big man’s fist-- twice the size of hers-- and her fist touched like some kind of kiss of battle. The impact of the collision sent the ring of townsfolk stepping back as the gush of wind displaced by the impact came hurling at them.
Harold being the stronger force would pressure Violet but instead of counter the force she would let the fist continue as she would pull in her fist and spin inward toward the opponent's chest, stop mid-spin, and unhinge her hand from her chest and smash it into the man like a bullet. To counter he would grab the hand with his free hand and with superior strength use it like a whip handle by wiping the rest of her body into the ground. BOOOM! Yet to his surprise while he held her hand, she had twisted her body to where her feet caught the whipping.
She would lunge from the ground and send her legs at his head. To avoid any damage he would let go of her and leap back. Missing the attack, she was now both in free fall, as well as in an awkward angle: defenseless. Harold aiming to capitalize on this would right after landing from his leap, lunge toward her, right fist first. Unable to react in time she would take the full brunt of the attack, sending her tumbling toward the crowd yet before hitting them she would catch herself. But the attack was not over, the man had followed her tumble and was behind the girl sending his left fist into her the moment she caught herself. In a desperate attempt to avoid any fatal damage she would block the attack while trying to deflect its trajectory. Resulting in her tumble to the right, in-bounds but still having taken the damage.
This was only the beginning of the beat down. Harold now having the higher ground would send his left foot in a kicking motion onto the girl, her horrific position would do nothing to aid her in her defense. The attack would be blocked by her forearms and the force would send her upward, in a sideways angle. Harold would send his right hand in a downward hook on her in prediction of the way she would rise. The attack would connect with her forearms again but send her slamming into the ground. CRACK! The ground would crack and so would her shoulder and hip. To finish the fight his left foot would move to smash her chest.
The girl at this moment rolls inward, dodging his foot and positioning herself underneath him. Harold would buckle his right knee to smash hit on her but she would grab the ground and use it to send herself flying out from underneath him, roll and jump up into a boxing stance. A moment of silence befell both the crowd and fighters. Murmurs went around; “Is she going to win this?” “Damn, another loss for her” “No one can beat Harold”. A dark shadow befell her eyes as she heard these whispers. Harold, on the other hand, was disappointed.
Huh. Another loss. Guess she isn't ready for the sea just yet.
Harold would dash at her now. Only dust remaining where he last was. Upon reaching her he would send his right fist at her head. Spinning outward, she would dodge his attack and position herself outside of his fist. In response, a quick turn of his own on his right leg would send the back of his left elbow at her. Violet would evade via ducking. It was at that moment Harlod realized what just happened. He had both of his hands in positions that could not aid him in defense while his legs would only defend his lower half effectively.
Violet's left fist would fly at his jaw sending a paralyzing effect through him.
A weak point! Shit. Shit. Shit!
This momentary paralyzation allowed her to send her right punch into his right kidney. Pain sprang up through his body. Now able to react he would try jumping back to get into good form again. It was then when he realized what changed since she last fought him.
Two sharp attacks pinged from within him-- the jaw which she had hit and the kidney. The pain hit twice fold for some reason, and as a result, forced his body to double over in pain. This opportunity allowed Violet another hit: a left swipe to the side of his head. BANG! His world began to spin.
This damage!! How can she hit so hard!?
Again as he tried to move, the attack he took to the head, hit again. Twice fold. Violet would swipe right at his right temple. BANG!! He tried to move and BANG! Twice Fold. She would land another swipe, BANG, he would try to move, BANG BANG!! TWICE FOLD! Another, and another and another. BANG, BANG, BANG!! Betraying all nerves he would move through the pain and try to send one last hefty right punch toward her but she would only block the attack, right hand open and grasping it. She would smile as he stared at her, red-tinted eyes on her solid blue ones.
“Three-Fold.” His eyes would widen as the pain would emerge in time to his realization of what those words meant. His entire body would blow up in pain from all the previous attacks he took from her, three times as powerful.
Huh, Seven, I tried. But she’s grown much faster than I fathomed. Be ready… man. She’s coming. The next Pirate Queen.