New World, Yerkes Island.
With three days left until the time Lirisk had set, Rowen decided not to take any chances, given that his opponent was a Celestial Dragon. He decided to set off early.
Before departing, he found “weight loss coach” Colonel Warren and asked him to take care of the aircraft. Then, with a respectful bow from Warren, Rowen took off into the sky.
A startling thunder woke the relatively small Yerkes Island. Pirates shimmered with interest, watching as the Zipper Thunder sped away, each wearing a pensive expression.
However, when they thought of the dense array of Plasma Cannons on the Marine aircraft, a shiver ran down their spines. They felt that this matter needed careful consideration.
Warren sensed the pirates’ recent activity and increased communication with the Aircraft Force, strengthening their defenses.
Those who could enter the New World had all undergone the baptism of the first half of the Grand Line. Whether in terms of strength or temperament, they were not in the same league as the small-time pirates of the first half. Without Rowen, the sea-calming divine needle, a battle was inevitable.
Naturally, Rowen did care about the Aircraft Force’s life and death, but this was a perfectly normal situation. He had no reason to interfere.
He was the overall Commander of the Aircraft Force, not its babysitter.
The battles that should occur must take place. Otherwise, how could elite soldiers be forged?
Moreover, Marine clearing pirates and pirates attacking Marine were as normal as it got.
This was the era – in which Marines and Pirates were involved in a life-and-death struggle.
Deafening thunder reverberated through the New World, within the Whitebeard Pirates’ territory, aboard [The Moby Dick].
“Huh? What’s that thing up in the sky?”
As the Whitebeard Pirates were holding a routine banquet, they heard the muffled thunder from above. Marco curiously looked up from where he sat. Whitebeard, who was seated in his massive chair with an IV drip, opened his narrow and domineering eyes and calmly glanced at the sky.
So it’s him…
Whitebeard thought with a mixture of surprise and understanding. Then he looked at his sons, his gaze settling on the figure of his son who had suddenly fallen silent, his upper body bare.
“That’s Undying Vice Admiral Rowen, the one who has gained fame in Marine in recent years. He’s the user of the Goro Goro no Mi (Thunder-Thunder Fruit) Ability. This is his Supercharged Travel, which he developed to swiftly traverse the sea!”
Ace explained somberly to Marco, his fists clenched tightly.
“Well, at least it proves your enemy isn’t dead. You still have a chance to take revenge in person!” Marco twitched his mouth helplessly as he spoke, feeling like slapping himself.
He knew full well about the deep-seated grudge between Ace and the other party, yet he had to bring it up.
“Hey, hey! Marco, that’s not exactly comforting!”
“Flower Sword” Vista, the commander of the Fifth Division, leaned over with a smile, pushing a wine glass into Marco’s arms. “On a pirate ship, there are consequences for saying the wrong things. Right?”
“Remove the glasses and bring in a barrel of wine!”
“Down the hatch, Marco!”
“You should call me ‘Commander’ you assholes!”
Marco roared with his sharp teeth, sending a murderous glare at a certain someone who was heckling in the crowd. Eventually, he sighed, smacked his lips, picked up the barrel of wine that the well-intentioned person had brought, and gulped it down in big swigs.
The group stared in astonishment as the massive barrel, not even half the height of a regular person, emptied rapidly. Their expressions were filled with surprise.
The scent of alcohol surrounded Marco, and he belched loudly. His cheeks turned a noticeable shade of red, and he grinned at the dumbfounded onlookers.
“We’re… we’re in trouble!”
After staring blankly for a while, someone suddenly screamed.
“Commander Marco is drunk!”
“Oh no! Stop him!”
“Who told him to drink? Go up there and take a beating!”
“Burp… Don’t stop me! Today, one is as good as another. No one’s getting away!”
Marco pushed away his approaching comrades, the Undying flames of a phoenix flaring on his body. Holding the empty wine barrel, he smirked.
“Come on! Whoever falls first is the loser!”
“Gūrārārārarara! You all made this mess, so solve it yourselves. This old man won’t intervene!”
After speaking, Whitebeard lifted the giant-scale gourd specially made for him to his lips, preparing to take a large gulp. However, at that moment, a ball of intensely hot blue flames flew toward his face. Whitebeard’s mouth twitched frantically, and he instantly turned his head to avoid it.
The gourd was split into two by the flames, spilling alcohol all over the place.
Marco raised his hand unsteadily and wobbled his finger. “O-Old… Old Man… *Burp!* You can’t drink… drink now…”
I didn’t call you son for this nonsense!!!
“Huh? Why did this Log Pose change position?”
In the high sky, after flying for a while, Rowen stopped and pulled out his Log Pose to take a look. He immediately noticed that he had deviated from the course by at least 30 degrees, and he couldn’t even guess how far off he was.
But the Log Pose was pointing in this direction just a few minutes ago. How could it change direction instantly?
Rowen scratched his head, suddenly realizing something related to Warren.
“I see, it’s a test, huh?”
“If I had a sea map, I could go directly based on coordinates. But in that case, the Log Pose would be useless… So, the Log Pose you gave me means that the sea map is an option for admitting failure?”
With a smirk, Rowen continued, “You thought it through quite well, but you underestimate my speed!”
No matter how many wrong answers there are, they mean nothing before my SPEED!
Rowen emitted a high-voltage electric current all around him, and his speed suddenly skyrocketed!
A day later…
Standing on top of a city-sized snail’s shell, Rowen looked at the Log Pose in his hand, which was now spinning and jumping nonstop. His face turned pitch-black. Vinsmoke Judge, who had just walked out of his room and was stretching, noticed Rowen from the corner of his eye. Their eyes met.
Both of them froze simultaneously.
Rowen & Judge: “F*ck!!”
Judge: Why is a Marine here?!
Rowen: Is this the North Blue?!
“May I inquire, sir…”
Before Judge could speak, Rowen quickly stood up and said, “Sorry to bother you. I’ll take my leave!”
Judge remained in a state of confusion until the Zipper Thunder disappeared at the edge of the sky before slowly regaining his senses.
“Undying Vice Admiral Rowen? Why would he appear here?”
Judge’s mind was clouded, and he suspiciously pondered the World Government’s intentions.
Another day later…
On a sunny island, Rowen looked at the pirates lying all around him, clutching his head in pain.
“Why is there wind in the Calm Belt high up? This isn’t scientific!”
“Sir… Marine, thank you for helping us get rid of these pirates…”
The elderly mayor walked over, trembling and hobbling on his cane. He put down his cane and prostrated himself on the ground in gratitude toward Rowen. Behind him were a group of villagers who had been rescued. Women and children knelt down, showing gratitude for Rowen’s life-saving deed.
“It’s nothing. It’s my duty…”
Rowen wasn’t in the mood to linger with them and waved his hand, ready to leave. However, at that moment, he heard the sound of “Buru Buru”. Curious, Rowen opened his shirt and took out a Den Den Mushi that was still working diligently despite the motion sickness.
“Rowen Vice Admiral, seems like you’re in trouble?”
“Vegapunk-San?!” Rowen was slightly surprised and then sighed, “Yeah, I seem to be lost. Can you help me find a New World sea map?”
Rowen decided to give up relying on the Log Pose. He wasn’t cut out to be a navigator!
“By the way, how did you know I was in trouble?”
In South Blue, within a secret experimental base, Vegapunk’s expression faltered. He looked at the Zipper Thunder still lingering in the sky and muttered with twitching lips, “How did I know? That’s quite a long story…”
(The End of this Chapter)
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