Franky is fascinated by Robin. Her beauty, her smile, her dagger-sharp mind, are magnetic, and as a man made of metal, he is willingly drawn to her.
But her attacks are the first thing he truly notices about her, after they go through hell at Enies Lobby, he builds the Sunny, and they all sail away from Water Seven.
A random marine ship has attacked, and as they all work at dispatching the small fries, Franky sees a flash of pink in the corner of his eyes. He turns to look, and pauses.
She is a goddess. Ebony hair flying free, arctic blue eyes that glitter as she braces and raises her arms in an X across her chest. And even as marines rush to surround her, she still appears beautifully, breathtakingly calm. It’s not until she dodges a sword that he recognizes that aura for what it is.
That is what the seas look like moments before lightning strikes its surface. That is what clouds look like moments before they reach down to the earth. This is a force of nature unleashed and heaven help the man who stands in this woman’s way.
“-fleurs!” He hears her yell, and it’s only then that he refocuses on the scene at hand and sees the flower petals, blooming as hands sprout on the maines and incapacitate them. Realizing he has turned his attention from the battle and that Robin needs no help, he turns to dive into the melee.
But even as he pulls out yet another fantastical weapon with a yell of SUPER, he smiles softly to himself.
For ‘fleur’ meant flower, and while at times she could be mistaken for a sea goddess, to him she was a new bloom, beautiful and deceptively dangerous.
And to a man whose life has revolved around perilous risk-taking and hazards both natural and manmade?
She is the calm at the center of a storm. And one day, he hopes, she will allow him into the eye with her.
Robin is captivated by Franky.
She doesn’t consider him very much, when she first meets him, and she is too caught up in thoughts of her nakama and their fate. Even after Enies lobby is over, and they set sail on a new ship he built them after they give the Merry it’s proper send off, she’s still reeling at this sudden revelation. Things like loyalty and safety and trust have suddenly become familiar concepts, and she is still trying not to drown in the sheer joy of it all, when she finally does focus on him.
And at first, he is exactly what she expects. Loud, adaptive, and playful, with inventions as crazy as his fashion sense and creative as only the mind of a true Straw Hat can be.
But then, one night after dinner, something unexpected occurs. The others have all gone to bed, even Sanji, (though only after multiple assurances that he should, that she was fine, and that she’d do it herself once she’d finished her book (which was a lie, she was reading because she held out little hope of peaceful slumber, but didn’t want to worry him), and they are the only two left on deck. He has been eating busily throughout the meal, and she is about to leave when he turns to her, and asks, “Do you want one?”
She is surprised, but considers the cookie offered to her. It is a small cookie, but it is shaped like a fountain, with intricate frosting delicately enhancing the design.
“It looks like Water Seven.” She notes, gazing at it.
“Yep! Hometown specialty, you know. I brought some with me.”
“And… you want me to have it?” She does not like the sliver of insecurity that peeks through, but Franky does not seem to mind, and smiles far more softly then she has ever seen from him.
“Yeah. So, here. Take it, cause I have watch tonight and Zoro’s gonna get snippy if I keep him away from his beauty sleep.” So saying, he hands her the cookie, and strolls toward the door. Just before he leaves the room, he smiles at her again, a little wider this time. “I hope you like it, Robin. It usually makes me think of home, and you were looking a little lost. So, I thought it might help you feel a bit more super.”
He vanishes through the door, humming a tune, and only Robin now remains in the kitchen.
She laughs to herself, and begins slowly eating the cookie. Savoring the taste, she considers the unusual interaction and smiles to herself at his words. He was right, she decides, and the fragments of the ice she armored her heart in that remain melt a little bit more.
Because this, she knows, as she licks the last bit of frosting from her fingertips and thinks of the man of gave it to her, is what home feels like.