The rule is, the kitchen stays clean. After dinner, after he’s finished serving dessert, Sanji goes and cleans every last inch till it’s sparkling. Even if there’s a party, Sanji will still stagger drunkenly through scrubbing and sweeping long after everyone’s passed out.
Every morning Sanji wakes up two hours before everyone else. First he makes coffee, then he smokes three or four cigarettes, then he makes breakfast. That’s how it goes. He sure as hell isn’t cleaning before his coffee, and there’s nothing more miserable than waking up to a dirty kitchen.
It’s four in the morning and Sanji is already awake. He slips out of the quarters silently as always, head already full of ideas. The Sunny’s guest doesn’t tolerate bread, but Sanji’s considering a donut made of rice flour, because Nami was talking about donuts last night, so he’s giving himself some extra time to experiment. If all else fails, there’s always eggs.
Sanji steps into his beautiful clean kitchen -
And there’s eggshells on the floor. Dirty knives on the counters. A black, crusted pan and half a roll of sausage and his fucking captain and latest ally are sitting on the countertop looking at Sanji like he’s the intruder here.
“Sanji!” Luffy says, like he doesn’t see the fucking steam blowing out of Sanji’s ears. “Couldn’t sleep?”
“What the hell, Luffy? In my kitchen! You destroyed my kitchen! And - and you!” Sanji points at Law, who doesn’t even have the grace to look guilty. “You’re enabling him? What is happening?”
“Snacks,” Law says. There’s something in his hand. Something a little charred that might have once been a sausage?
“Snacks?” Sanji hisses. “Snacks? You couldn’t wait for breakfast? You - you -”
“Is it breakfast time already?” Luffy looks surprised. “Sweet!”
“Lost track of the time,” Law says, popping the sausage slice in his mouth.
“Both of you, out. Now. No. Wait - clean up all this shit first - and then. Get out.” Sanji wants to start so bad. His hands are itching, his foot belongs in Luffy’s face, but it wouldn’t look good in front of the other captain, for Luffy’s crew to undermine him like that, and he hasn’t had a coffee and he needs a cigarette and he is this, this fucking close to stretching Luffy out and knotting him up like a pretzel and dropping him in the fish tank.
“Wow.” Luffy chuckles. “Were we fishing all night?”
“Guess so,” Law says.
“Fishing? Fishing? You were fishing all night?”
“There’s this legendary eel that only hunts at night,” Luffy explains. “It’s allergic to the sun, but it glows in the dark. It lives at the bottom of the sea and only comes up to the surface at night!”
“It’s a myth,” Law grins.
“That’s what he says, but I say -”
“Anything is possible if you believe in yourself.”
“Yes! Also? It’s huge. I’m talking eel for days, Sanji! And they’re all glowy and cool -”
“And they don’t exist, but -”
“Shut UP!” Sanji’s head is killing him. “And clean up. I’m gonna - I’m gonna - wait, why are you hunting a fish that doesn’t exist?”
“Why didn’t you stop Luffy?”
“Why aren’t you cleaning?”
“We’ll clean up,” Luffy says, holding his hands up in surrender. “Sorry, Sanji. But we were fishing all night and I got hungry and -”
“Stop talking. Start cleaning.” Sanji pulls out a cigarette. “I’m coming back in five minutes and if this place isn’t spotless I’ll - I’ll -”
Yeah, and Law could dismember him with a thought.
“He’s mad,” Luffy stage-whispers, and Law is flat out chuckling now. “Sorry, Sanji! Yes sir, right on it, sir!”
Law salutes. A thin blue film spreads out around him and in a flash everything is put away, white kitchen towels in their place.
Sanji loses it.
“You put dirty dishes away? You put dirty dishes in the cupboard?”
But Luffy is doubled over laughing now, and Law sighs, flicks his fingers. The dirty dishes land unceremoniously on the floor.
“I’m leaving! Leaving! And I’m not making breakfast!”
“So you’re gonna let us make breakfast for the rest of the crew,” Law says thoughtfully. “You know, Luffy…”
Fucking hell. Luffy is grinning and now they’re having one of those secret conversations again. This shared captain language of tilted eyebrows and half-smiles.
“OUT! Both of you! I’ll clean,” Sanji says, desperate. “Just. Get out of my kitchen.”
“Snacks,” someone mumbles.
Sanji turns and sees the great green beast himself. Zoro looks half-asleep, scratching his ass, but he’s poking his stupid head in now and muttering about snacks.
“Y’all are loud,” Zoro says. “Where’s the snacks?”
“Ooh,” Luffy says. “Kind of ate it all. Hold on, we can cook more sausage for you! Sanji, can you cook the rest of it?”
Sanji imagines being at the bottom of the ocean. He imagines a spa on some distant island, massages from beautiful women.
“Luffy charred most of it,” Law says. “He can’t cook to save his life.”
“Nope! That’s why I got Sanji.”
“Hungry,” Zoro mutters. “I’m hungry, and you guys woke me up.”
Sanji counts to ten. Takes a breath. Lights a cigarette, and starts to cook.
For the first time in his entire life, Luffy is late to breakfast.