blergh, I can’t really kick off either of the stories I have planned out without knowing which kid is the heir, because I’ll be saving the unused stories for later generations. So, I’ll be putting up an heir poll later today.
ik some people don’t understand exactly how much anxiety can irrationally prevent you from doing things, even easy things, or how much it can completely stunt your life… it’s garbage tbh and it’s not the same as being nervous, it’s not something you can necessarily just push through, you can be confident in some ways and terrified of other things for reasons that might not even make sense to you, and telling someone to “get over it” is practically a guarantee you’re making them feel even worse, so… yeah
A crown has
arrived in Los Santos. Not just a crown of course, a whole array of finery,
gold and jewels and an ornamental sceptre, even a smaller secondary crown, but
the true prize in the collection is clearly the extravagant domed affair, huge,
bejewelled and topped with a hefty gold cross. It’s for a show of sorts, a
traveling display of some ancient European royalty, and it couldn’t be a more
obvious trap if the Fake’s had received a personalized invitation.
Los Santos doesn’t
have a big arts scene, doesn’t have fancy museums or cultural influences; to
bring so much wealth to the city, the crime capital of the country, to roll it
right under the noses of the self-proclaimed royalty of organized crime and publically advertise its arrival is so
laughably on the nose it can only be the LSPD’s latest pathetic attempt at a
sting. An embarrassing police endeavour to draw the FAHC out, ludicrously
obvious and yet, despite all reason, it’s working.
It might be
offensively over the top but there are, of course, two members of the FAHC who
live for offensively over the top, who can’t even focus on the obvious jaws of
the trap, knowing all too well that the bait is poisoned but unable to help
being hooked anyway. Geoff and Gavin, the big boss and his most ostentatious
little snake, both lost the second there were crowns on the table, both shiny
eyed and hopeless, full of longing as their hurricane of plans tips into the
Gavin keeps making
puppy-dog eyes at Geoff, begging and pleading and carefully explaining exactly
why he deserves to be the one who wears the big crown; everyone already knows Geoff’s the king, he doesn’t need
it, and anyway it just wouldn’t suit his look at all. Geoff is batting off
every argument, some with considerable difficulty but he’s determined to hold
out, heart set on keeping the absurd thing for himself. Half out of affection,
half out of desperately placating bribery Geoff’s instead promising Gavin the
slightly smaller, more classically spiked crown; the fine filigree diadem
obviously the lighter of the two, easier to wear and arguably more pretty,
still obscenely ornate and look how gold it is Gavvers come on.
Boss and conman
aside the rest of the crew aren’t quite so blinded by the frankly insulting
attempt at a trap. Except, well. Except that they kind of are, in their own
Jack and Lindsay
spent a whole morning tracking down sources, ensuring that while the display
was fake the actual items were authentic. And boy, the LSPD didn’t go halfway
in their bid for stupidest plan of all time – not only is everything
certifiably real, it’s worth an actual fortune. They aren’t kidding themselves
about fencing the crowns, it’s important to be aware of one’s weaknesses and
sometimes that means acknowledging that you work with egotistical children, but
there is still more than enough extra gubbins in the display to make such a wildly
ill-advised heist worth considering.
Ryan, Michael and
Jeremy aren’t particularly hung up on the money end; it’s always nice, sure,
but honestly the FAHC hasn’t been strapped for cash in a long, long time. These
days the jobs they do tend to have some other purpose, amusement or revenge or
displays of power with monetary gain a secondary factor, definitely not
sufficient to barrel headfirst into a guaranteed trap. But then the trap is so clear
to see it’s pretty much a dare, a middle finger, the suggestion that the Fake’s
are too stupid to see what’s right in front of them. If there’s one thing the more
rough and tumble side of the crew have in common it’s their inability to stand
down from a challenge, their dislike of any insinuation that there’s anything
they cannot do, any prize outside their reach. Screw the gold, Michael, Jeremy
and Ryan are, as always, just out to ruin the LSPD’s day.
So they brainstorm,
they plan, they get into more than one argument about the authority bestowed by
fancy headwear and, in the end, after enduring numerous scornful complaints
from members the Support Crew regarding always doing things the hard way, they simply
call up one of Geoff’s rats on the force and have her unlock the door and look
the other way. It is perhaps the most anticlimactic ‘heist’ of the FAHC’s
entire existence – not that you’d know it from the way Geoff and Gavin swan
about in their crowns. Not that you’d know it unless you were there to witness,
actually, considering the hilariously inaccurate rumour that spreads like
wildfire, the tale of an epic showdown between the police and the Fakes, the
crowns simply the spoils of war in a greater battle that took out half a city
To be fair, that battle
definitely happened, it just had literally nothing to do with any heist.
Disappointed by the appalling lack of action Ryan took Michael and Jeremy for a
leisurely drive down to the police station, car full of everything from flares
to SMG’s to a full-blown rocket launcher, and the three of them had a little
party. By the time the rest of the crew shows up, somewhat overdressed but
still drawn as always towards the sound of senseless mayhem, the street is a
warzone, a building is on fire, and the LSPD have completely sworn off ever
again trying to entrap the FAHC.
Seeing Dragon and Whitebeard trying to passive-aggressively out-dad each other was the most hilarious thing Sabo had ever seen.
It had started when one of their spies had reported Ace apparentely saying that his only father was Whitebeard. Sabo hadn’t thought anything of it at the time. He was well aware of his brother’s issues, after all, and claiming Dragon as a father would be a phenomenally stupid thing to do, that would put both Ace and the Revolution in danger.
He most definetely had not expected Dragon to start sending birthday gifts. Not only to Ace, but to him and Luffy as well (so they wouldn’t become jealous, he suppossed), though Ace’s embarrassed reaction had been a delight to see. Like the good brother he was, Sabo joined in on the fun and started giving gifts as well. He was a bit miffed that Luffy’s always managed to mortify Ace more than his, because he was actively trying to be embarrassing and Luffy was just being his usual oblivious self, but he suppossed that he really shouldn’t be so surprised. It was Luffy, after all.
But the most unexpected (and hilarious) reaction of all came from a whole different quarter: the Marines.
They got wind of the increased communication between the Whitebeards and the Revolutionaries, and panicked. Spectacularly.
Which, yeah, kind of understandable. A possible alliance between the Whitebeards and the Revolutionaries had to be their worst nightmare come true. The unexpected part came when they discovered that their interactions centered around, for lack of a better word, spoiling Ace. Because they procceeded to panic even worse.
All kinds of crazy (and hilarious) theories started flying around, and Sabo (and he would bet his top hat that Ace as well) almost had a heart attack when he heard the epithet “Pirate Prince” being thrown in there. Thankfully, it seemed that the one who said it was merely referring to Ace possibly being Whitebeard’s heir, and hence the Revolutionaries’ interest on him.
Then someone recognized Ace as one of Kitsune’s “babies” and the crackpot theories kicked it up another notch.
(And Sabo really shouldn’t let the idea of Kitsune drunkenly gushing about him and his brothers with accompanying “photos” made from her illussory powers make him so damn happy)
Apparentely the majority of the Corps was almost completely convinced that Ace was Dragon and Kitsune’s son (and that idea would give him gross-out shudders for decades to come, because blergh) and that Whitebeard had claimed Dragon as his son (thus making him Ace’s grandfather and an ally to the Revolution) when Garp shattered that misconception with judicious use of the Fist of Righteous Fury. His predictable explosion was followed by an explanation that Dragon was his son, Ace was Kitsune’s baby because she was his aunt, he was Ace’s only grandfather, and Whitebeard was just stealing other people’s family as usual.
Sabo liked to believe that his explanation was followed by an awkward silence after Garp realized that he wasn’t suppossed to have let slip that Dragon was his son.
The theories didn’t stop there, though (shockingly, the Marines seemed to have learned better than to take the Vice Admiral at his word) and Sabo decided to contribute to the chaos himself. It only took a call to his beloved aunt (who was also the only woman he would ever claim as his mother, and the Marines could puzzle on that until their brains fell off as far as Sabo was concerned) and she asked Sengoku, in front of the whole Corps, if he didn’t have anything to say, considering he was also part of the family. The man hummed and hawwed (and quite probably glared at Kitsune for putting him on the spot like that) but didn’t give a definite answer, which made Marineford resemble a pen for headless chickens for weeks.
Sabo smiled with probably way too much unholy glee when he called Whitebeard just as things seemed to be calming down.
He didn’t even do anything that outrageous, in all fairness. He just asked if Whitebeard would be averse to calling Garp “father” the next time he met some Marines (before the pulverizing left them deaf, of course), incidentally “confirming” the current most popular theory, that had Garp as Ace’s great-grandfather, Whitebeard as the grandfather and Dragon as the father with Kitsune as the aunt. He wasn’t sure if he’d do it (the literally earthshaking laughter could be taken either way, really), but he had a good feeling. The Commanders seemed to find the idea agreeable, though Sabo thought that he heard a sound suspiciously like Marco the Phoenix repeatedly thumping his head against the mizzen mast (he’s very familiar with that sound, but the GURARARAs made it difficult to say for certain), but it’d probabaly be fine.
After all, after claiming so much family over the years, being the one who’s claimed should be a pleasant feeling for the man. Or he might just do it to fuck with the Marines’ heads. Most people would probably say that that isn’t on Whitebeard’s character, but Sabo likes to think that he’s good at detecting kindred spirits.
Which is part of the reason why he’s now en route to meet with Law. After all, Sengoku would never disown Law or, as he likes to refer to him, “My only sensible relative - why didn’t you become a Marine - between the two of us we could rein the Monkey Ds in - it’s not a lost cause, really LAWWWWW”.
And considering that Bakainu has been literally fuming since this whole charade started, Sengoku confirming that he’s part of the Monkey D. extended family might just be enough to push him into mutiny. Kitsune has already promised to take pictures of the mutt being curbstomped by Sengoku and Garp if it really does happen.
The most beautiful thing of this whole situation is that Ace’s secret is now under iron-clad wraps, because after it finally blows over the whole Corps would probably mutiny en masse if someone had the temerity of trying to open the Pandora’s Box of Ace’s parentage again.
Not that it’s going to blow over any time soon, of course. Sabo is going to give it a little time for the results of his chat with his sorta-cousin to settle before bringing Luffy into it. Mainly because throwing Luffy into the fray will bring the most insanity by definition, and it’d be cruel and unusual not to let those poor sods get their bearings before facing his incredibly unpredictable little brother.
If they start to relax instead of preparing when the calm before the storm arrives… well, that’d be just silly, now wouldn’t it?
Sabo is determined to ignore the apprehensive looks of his comrades at his maniacal cackling. He might have been more than a little sloshed when he bet Koala that he could bring the Marine Corps to its knees with the power of love and family, but by God is he going to win that bet.
Yes, this is pure, undiluted crack… I like trollishmastermind!Sabo way too much.