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04 October 2010 @ 02:10 am
one piece: six weeks part 1  
Title: Six Weeks
Genre: General, drama
Pairings: None so far; Nami/Sanji favored
Rating: PG
Status: Ongoing
Summary: After he breaks his arm in battle, Sanji must endure the slow recovery process and come to terms with what it means to be a Baratie chef
Warnings: Not really a true warning, but I regard this story as a refining of "It's All Fun and Games" (my first One Piece fanfic), and themes and salvaged bits from that fic may reappear here in modified forms.
Notes: It has been a long time since I've written fic, so forgive me if this effort feels a little tentative. I'm still feeling back my way to the characters and world. This story takes place sometime between Thriller Bark and Shabondy, and is set within the canon story continuum.

It is funny: you can dodge bullets and fire with the ease of stepping around a sidewalk puddle, you can block and deflect and shield and otherwise bat away all projectiles heading earnestly your direction, you can take stakes through the legs and knives to the back and lightening bolts dead in the chest with nothing more than a manly flinch, and yet nothing quite prepares you for this, the sharp crack, the dull surprise, the growing realization swiftly turning, heavingly, into panic as you realize your arm no longer responds to the command of your brain.

Sanji stared down at his right arm, the battle around him now suddenly of only tangential relevance to the current crisis. The cannonball that had hit him had rolled away somewhere, to another part of the deck, who cared. The impact had thrown him backwards into the mast, it seemed. Sanji couldn't see very much of what was going on, anyway, since Usopp and Franky were standing in front of him even though they'd both been somewhere else just a minute ago. There was a lot of shouting. He had been shouting, himself, only moments before, but now he'd seemed to have lost his voice.

"Chopper, get over here!" someone was yelling - Usopp, he dimly realized.

The rustling of hooves through grass, then - "A doctor! He needs a doctor! Wait! I - I'm the doctor!" Soft tapping on his chest. "Sanji, Sanji, we need to go. You can't stay out here."

"I'm fine," Sanji tried to say, but it came out as a kind of gurgle. It wasn't as if the arm hurt so very badly. The arm. It wasn't even his arm anymore. That was the thing. His arm, his arm. Oh, God, his arm.

He tried to stand up, but his legs gave out from under him, seemingly as rebellious as the length of flesh and sinew and blood - what was this? - dangling limply from his shoulder.

"Alley-oop." A barrel arm threaded with artificial hairs lumbered around his waist. "C'mon, Eyebrow Bro, let's get you inside. You're a sitting duck out here." He felt himself lifted, then, like white-hot daggers, there was the pain at last. Sanji couldn't help it; he let himself be stabbed through and sank, somewhat gratefully, into the dark.

* * * * *

Sanji woke up and found himself lying in the infirmary bed. Chopper was sitting on a stool at the table, scribbling into a notebook, but Franky was nowhere to be seen. Sanji could hear thumping sounds out on the deck.

"I'm going back out there," he began, swinging his legs over the side of the bed. But the movement brought back the pain, needles instead of knives this time, right up the arm and into the brain. Sanji fell back again, gasping.

"No." Chopper hopped off the chair and came over, frowning. His child's voice was now forceful, authoritative: here was a reindeer who knew what he was doing. "Your arm's broken and you've been in shock. You can't go anywhere right now, Sanji. Anyway," he added, "the fight's almost over. Franky said Luffy's just asking the other pirates if they want to surrender."


"Because we've never had prisoners of war before," Chopper explained. He climbed onto the bed and began pressing his little cloven hooves down on various points along Sanji's abdomen, for no discernible reason that Sanji could see. "Franky said Luffy said it might be fun, and we could let them go if they didn't do anything interesting. Oh, good. It doesn't look like you have any internal injuries."

"My arm's broken?" He could hear it, the hysterical break in his own voice. Not this, Sanji thought. Anything but this. I'll take the internal injuries, please, please.

Chopper frowned again. "In two places," he said severely. "You're lucky the bone didn't shatter." He gestured with a hoof. "Take a look."

He raised his head and looked down the length of his body. His right arm was bare down to the elbow; someone, probably Chopper by the careful, tidy snips, had cut away the cloth of his jacket and shirtsleeves. From the elbow downwards his arm was bent at a precise ninety degrees, and the whole affair was swathed in wide strips of white linen, with a leather-padded sling cradled the cast and wrapped around his neck. Two lengths of sanded wood sandwiched his forearm underneath the cloth: splints.

Half-heartedly, Sanji attempted to wriggle his fingers. It hurt. He stopped.

Don't panic, he told himself. Worse things have happened. You've been hit by lightning twice. You've had buildings fall on top of you. You've been turned into a zombie penguin dog. This is nothing.

"No problem, right?" he said. His voice sounded flat and too calm, even to himself. He ignored Chopper's concerned expression. "This'll take, what, a week, tops. We'll eat leftovers and have a lot of sandwiches and soup."

"Um, no, not exactly." Chopper, Sanji could tell, was trying to sound soothing, but the reindeer didn't have the temperament; his tone was of one delivering a death sentence. "Broken arms usually take about six weeks to heal. And of course you'll have to take it easy…"

Sanji frowned. Chopper scooted backwards on the bed with a squeak.

"I don't have six weeks," Sanji said flatly. "Didn't you learn how to speed these things up with Dr. Kureha or something? And what happened to curing every disease in the world?"

"Diseases, Sanji," Chopper said defensively. "A broken arm isn't a disease. It's true, it might not take you six weeks. But it's going to be more than one week."

"But I have to cook."

"No cooking."

"But I'm a chef." He didn't realize he was yelling until he saw Chopper's face, worried, anxious, scared. Sanji tried to reason with the doctor, tried to make him understand. "I can't injure my hands, Chopper, do you see? I have to use them to cook. I understand some injuries take longer than others to heals, but I would really, really appreciate it if you could look through your medical books and see if there is a way to fix my arm in maybe six or seven days, preferably less. I just need you to understand how important - "

He was cut off by the infirmary door crashing open. Luffy, a herd of elephants all by himself, stampeded into the room, covered in dust and gunpowder. The rest of the crew followed close behind, everyone crowding to fit inside the small room.

"Are you okay, Sanji?" Luffy hollered. "Zoro walloped that guy good who shot the cannonball at you! We didn't take any prisoners, by the way! They let us have all their gold instead because Nami said she'd do horrible things to them if they didn't. Hey! That's a cool sling! Can I sign it? Chopper, I want a sling too!"

"Don't crowd him, Luffy," Nami scolded, giving her captain a none-too respectful twist of the ear. "You're probably adding another week onto his recovery time." She threw a rare grin at Sanji to let him know it was a joke, but the smile faded as they all took in the scene: Sanji raised up on his one good elbow and snarling, Chopper with his back to the wall, ready to cry.

"So…" Usopp scratched at his curls, his eyes passing back and forth between the ship's cook and its doctor, "I guess we're skipping dinner tonight?"

* * * * *
To be continued
shii: :Pconditionally on October 4th, 2010 06:16 am (UTC)

you've chosen the perfect injury for sanji! (it's funny how he needs his arms and his legs, because he cooks but fights with, well...kicks) i think the characterization for everyone was really spot on and you managed to describe sanji's panic really well. alkdsfjad poor chopper 8(

great job so far! i'm looking forward for more :D
one ill-considered joke away from disaster: crack lovehsiuism on October 4th, 2010 04:18 pm (UTC)
Thanks! <3

I love throwing Sanji and Chopper together in fic, even though Chopper usually ends up being traumatized in one way or another XD

I'm actually really surprised that a Sanji-breaks-his-arm plot hasn't been done before (at least, my extremely lazy quick Google search turned up nothing.) But I'm happy to claim the territory! And thanks for the encouragement about characterization :)
Bevin: awwwwbevinbaka on October 4th, 2010 07:28 am (UTC)
I missed your fic! Never stop! Sometimes I wish it was more canon than some of the canon stuff.
one ill-considered joke away from disaster: sanji/namihsiuism on October 4th, 2010 04:29 pm (UTC)
Ehhhhh~! I don't want your praise, idiot! Like hell it'll make me happy! #^____^#

This one's been tossing back and forth in my head for a while, and I finally sat down last night to write it. I was actually really surprised by how much fun it was. Franky is such a good character to play with, even though he only got one line here :DD
emaschiemaschi on October 4th, 2010 08:42 pm (UTC)
I love this part, too! Can't wait for the next chapter!

Yeah, for Franky and Chopper, too! They were perfectly in character as I might say.
one ill-considered joke away from disasterhsiuism on October 5th, 2010 03:35 am (UTC)
Thanks! For some reason Franky is really fun to write :)
printfogey: Genma approvesprintfogey on October 6th, 2010 08:36 pm (UTC)
Oooh. *sits up and pays attention* Awesome. Y'know, I think I remember reading a snippet from a draft of this, when you posted about things you were working on - or if it wasn't this exactly, then at least a similar idea. It lingered in my head - seemed like something with great potential - and this opening reads very well to me. I don't think you sound rusty at all. Terrific opening paragraphs, too, sparking tension immediately.
one ill-considered joke away from disaster: sakura and a smokehsiuism on October 8th, 2010 02:23 am (UTC)
Hahaha, your memory is so much better than mine! Yeah, that was from the same fic idea, but it took forever to settle on what I wanted to do with it as a multi-part.

You are, as always, much too kind ;_;