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One Piece: Path to Power

Choices. Crossroads. Opportunities. Plunged into a broken world ruled by the strong, Damien must decide how his newfound life will proceed. Navigating through conflicts and alliances, his journey intertwines with the fates of powerful figures and kingdoms, challenging the very fabric of the hellish world. Set against the backdrop of the legendary One Piece universe, this tale reimagines familiar characters and lore, weaving a narrative that explores themes of power, redemption, and the indomitable spirit of adventure.  Damien's quest is not just for treasure or glory but a deeper pursuit of a truth that could change the course of history. As the tides of the Grand Line shift and churn, Damien confronts the harsh realities of the pirate world, facing challenges that test his limits and forge his legacy.  In this saga of the high seas, only the bold dare to dream, and only the strong survive. Will Damien rise to become a legend among pirates, or will the unforgiving waters claim yet another soul?  The journey to discover 'One Piece' is as perilous as it is wondrous, and for Damien, every choice and battle is a step closer to his ultimate destiny. Join him as he goes against all odds in the world of Pirates, Marines, and Revolutionaries, sailing on the Path to Power! ---------------------------------------------- Further fanfic information, QnAs and a trove of images are found here: https://discord.gg/aJHHHPvb6q Average Chapter Word Count: ~2400 words This story will be posted on RoyalRoad, ScribbleHub, Fanfiction.net, and AO3.

Paradox_ · Anime & Comics
Not enough ratings
130 Chs

[73] Times of Disorder

[2340 words]

Both Chapters 72 and 73 were released together, make sure you did not accidentally skip the latter.

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[Four Months Later]

[An Island in the Grand Line]

"They're here! Get the goods ready!"

"Roger!"

Dozens of people scrambled at the port of a suspicious island. They each looked both distinguished and wily. Donning black suits as if a code to appear elegant. 

"Ward-sama will kill us if even a single package goes missing, at least with the new channel, it's practically impossible to happen."

A man by the side also chimed in, "Yorororo! The Styx Passage has brought us so many options that we are hardly even satisfying the demands in time!" 

"Seirahaha! Even the World Government looks jealous of our business!"

A man overlooked the entire exchange. 

Tall stature with a full-black suit and tie to match his dark hair and stubble. He was an Underworld Emperor: The King of Loans—Aizen Ward!

"Business is really good… too good," he thought to himself. 

"Raawr!"

A giant Sea King soon appeared at the port, boasting a giant backpack-like crate strapped to its back. 

The men quickly ran around, filling the beast's inventory with their goods. Five other Sea Kings also appeared, each with the same device to their back. 

"Controlling these weaker Sea Kings to transport contraband through the Calm Belts, I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't seen it with my eyes."

Ward's dark eyes scanned the beasts readying to swim away. 

"I wonder how the Government will respond…"

[Unso Island]

The once glorious Fish Tank had been destroyed; a new building taking its place. 

Not only that, the entire island that was once littered with filth and disease had been entirely terraformed. 

The once proud Fish Tank had been demolished only for a new grand structure to be built.

Nearby land was set to match the overall design, all under the massive white pyramid where the main headquarters of the Shipping Magnate stood.

It was both grand and gargantuan; white, polished stone was imported from some shady channels for its outer, sleek look. A circular door that spanned at least fifty meters in diameter was built to welcome any guests.

The structure was given the name of the "Tomb of Storms".

[Pyramid Image (in Discord)]

.

It had been over half a year since the death of Barro, and the rise of the new King of Shipping—Fulcrum. 

The profit count had exploded under the new Emperor's rule to the point where it was enough to warrant the attention of some special characters.

The terraforming of Unso Island was an indicator of the success that had been achieved, much to the envy of the nobles around the seas.

[Hell's Peak]

At the very top of the pyramid was a room with huge windows spanning dozens of meters across, wide enough to observe the entire island.

The contrast between the shady Underworld and such a majestic stronghold was uncanny.

The interior was incredibly pure and majestic. It had white marble flooring with equally white walls that formed the triangular tip of the Tomb of Storms.

A semicircular staircase of a few steps led up to the seat that controlled the Empire of Unso Island.

[Peak Image (in Discord)]

.

A single, dark figure looked down past the spanning glass pane at the masses of people scrambling to fulfill their quota.

The lithe figure belonged to that of a woman, standing nearly ten feet in height. The reflective mask wholly hid her face, further accentuating the mystery of who was within.

Though under the majesty of the grand hall was a tense atmosphere, all due to the uninvited guests present.

They donned a full-white attire, poise and distinguished. The classy and formal clothing came with their masks of various designs. 

Naturally, they were Cipher Pol 'Aigis' Zero!

"Fulcrum, we simply come bearing the words of the World Government," the head agent reported. "We were sent to investigate the rather interesting method of transporting your goods through the Calm Belt."

"I'm sure you've come to understand that such a revolutionary route is beyond your abilities. It is in your best interest to share your methods with us."

The calm voice hid the underlying warning that came from the masked man. The five other agents beside him were just as tranquil.

"..."

Fulcrum slowly turned away from the giant window and onto the bold guests. The agents' reflections peered back at them through the black mask.

Months of residing in the shady waters of the Underworld had skyrocketed the woman's confidence in dealing with such things.

"Are you threatening me?"

The head agent exhaled a deep sigh as he felt the waves of pressure ripple through the illustrious halls.

"Conqueror's Haki," he muttered under his breath. "As expected of the one who brought such change to the Underworld."

"However, you must surely know that the New World, especially in these times of disorder, is swamped with dozens of Conquerors. Can you survive their onslaught?"

Fulcrum remained silent for a few moments. Even leading the agents to believe that their words had quite an impact.

Though under their false beliefs, they simply heard a light chuckle.

"Hmm?" the head agent frowned under his mask, trying to decrypt the situation.

*Thump* *Thump* *Thump*

Fulcrum calmly walked to the main throne-like seat that sat under the grand window overlooking the island.

"Perhaps it is the World Government who is overreaching their hand," the distorted voice resounded.

"From what I know, your entire structure has been hit quite hard since hell broke loose in the New World from the death of two Overlords, further amplified by the mayhem at Amethyst Kingdom."

"The Reverie which had been postponed for over three months now has finally been finalized," the mocking voice stated.

"Now it is a 'Remote Reverie', one that is conducted through transponder snails linking every one of the fifty members."

The information caught the agents off-guard. Their breathing hitched momentarily, naturally, it was quite the confidential news that had yet to be sent out.

The visor-like mask remained as indifferent as before, echoing out the slightly robotic woman's voice.

"You think you can come here and make demands when your very own summit of stability has to be thrown aside? You have no resources to waste on me."

Some senior members under Fulcrum were also present, watching from the side. Revelling in the glaring pause of the menacing CP Agency.

The masked agent sighed, reining in his previous demeanour.

"..."

"Very well then. Perhaps we can reach a profitable agreement."

Fulcrum did not respond as if telling the man to continue.

The CP-0 Agent went on to say, "The Five Elders would like to impose tariffs on the goods being brought into any nation under the World Government. Your route has led to an influx of arms, drugs and blood money that is throwing the economy of many kingdoms into chaos, it cannot continue," he finished. 

"What do you propose?" Fulcrum questioned.

The agent cleared his throat and answered.

"We want you to bring the other Underworld Emperors into an agreement. We, the Government, will legally allow their goods to arrive in aligned countries, within certain bounds. In return, we receive a portion of the profits."

He paused for a moment before continuing, "Beyond that, the Navy will be given access to your Styx Passages to transport resources and materials."

.

The Underworld existed by bringing in all the goods through smuggling routes. They paid a huge sum of money and time to illegally bring in all the materials, but with the Styx Passage, this was no longer a problem.

If anything, the increasingly strict measures being imposed by the countries had been a nuisance, and the recent spike in wealth would surely soon plateau.

"I can agree to your tax but there is no way I will allow for the latter condition."

The agent hesitated for a moment, opting to think.

"I'm afraid the Five Elders are adamant of both conditions."

The man raised his hands as if to show a helpless expression, one that Fulcrum paid no mind to.

"Then that brings our discussion to a close."

The agent seemed uncertain and defeatedly uttered, "We will take your words to our superiors."

"..."

Fulcrum watched in silence as the six figures disappeared from the hall in an instant.

.

"Boss, their words weren't bad, it will surely bring in more profits!"

Fulcrum looked to the side and saw the bald man approach her.

She shook her head, "It's not enough."

Though her tone became slightly annoyed, "I told you not to stand in front of the window, your head reflects too much light, it's unsettling."

The man grasped his hairless dome and gave a wry smile.

"I can't help it, I was born with no hair…"

[A/N: Keep my wife's name…]

.

However, he stopped speaking as Fulcrum gave a quick statement that wholly diverted his attention.

"Ebi, you've worked quite well these past months."

Fulcrum reached to the side and brought out a piece of treasure from the darkness of her armrests.

The man gawked as he saw the item fly through the sky and into his hands—a dark-coloured peach with swirls.

"Boss, this…!?"

"Consider this a reward, now go."

Ebi gulped, clenching the Devil Fruit tightly, he bowed his head and ran off and the room was emptied momentarily.

Fulcrum sat in the bright sun's rays. Her dark attire left quite the contrast with the shining white architecture.

"Puru," "Puru," "Puru."

"Puru," "Puru," "Puru."

"Katcha~!"

"Yo, Aurora."

The girl removed her mask and hood, allowing her silky hair to cascade down. The purple eyes gleaming at the figure mimicked by the snail.

"Damien, they came as you thought. Cipher Pol is very interested in the Styx Passages."

"Rahaha! Of course, they are. Though with their resources spread thin, there isn't a single thing they can do to challenge the Underworld," the voice on the other end of the phone replied.

Aurora nodded.

"Aside from that, are you sure about giving away that Devil Fruit? It's a very rare power."

"It is indeed rare, but right now you also need some decent personnel to hold the Underworld in chains," the snail responded. "Plus, the ability isn't all that powerful but it'll go a long way in controlling the unruly ones of your Empire."

The fruit was sent on behalf of all the other Underworld Emperors as a token of gratitude to ensure better future relations between each faction.

.

The snail conveyed the grin of the person on the other side of the phone.

"You're worth more than just doing these mundane tasks, as for that Ebi, what was given can also be taken away..."

Aurora smiled. Though paying no mind to the latter words but rather to Damien acknowledging her worth. 

She then turned to the matter at hand, "Cipher Pol will probably return with a new deal and less patience."

The snail made a nodding gesture as it continued to speak, "I'm sure they will, alongside many spies and rats from other nations; be careful."

"As for the Government? I need you to add some more fuel to the fire." The snail's expression turned disdainful as it uttered, "Make them beg."

Aurora narrowed her eyes as she heard the words.

"Use the contact I connected you with, she will make things a lot easier. I'll see you soon."

Aurora nodded and bid farewell to the voice, dialling another number.

She thought over her new order and reached an idea.

"Puru," "Puru," "Puru."

"Katcha~!"

The snail woke up once again, linking the two people on either side.

"Ara~! I didn't think I would get a call from you so soon," The snail took the shape of a woman with a tuft of short black hair, smoking a cigar.

"I'm always amazed by the connections Damien-chan manages, it seems he's quite close to you, young Underworld Empress."

"Tell me, what do I owe this pleasure?"

Aurora lightly cleared her throat and addressed the person on the other side of the call, "I have information that may interest your Rocks Pirates."

"Oh? Go on."

Aurora leaned toward the transponder and answered, "It's the latest route of the Heavenly Tributes from ten Kingdoms under the World Government."

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[Pirate Paradise of Hachinosu]

"Katcha~!"

The call ended as the snail went to sleep in the hands of the black-haired woman.

Shakky, the Black Death, stood up from her seat and walked out of the room, a thin smile on her face.

As she walked by, the nearby pirates all moved out of the way. It was apparent that she had made quite a few examples of some scum to achieve such notoriety.

The woman made her way through the humid street that had turned red from blood, reaching a large mess hall.

*Gurrup* Sounds of munching and devouring foods echoed through the area as a massive hulking body sat at the center of the room.

His mouth was like a vacuum that sucked up all the food before him while drinking tens of liters of saké in the process.

.

The pirate who seemed quite grumpy looked to the door and saw Shakky walk in, "Hmm, what do you want, woman?"

"Are you still annoyed that Linlin and Shiki didn't take you to the Angelic War?"

The beast of a pirate humphed, not amused with the subject.

Shakky cheekily smiled, waving a piece of paper, "I found something for you to do ~"

Kaido, who was naturally the sulking giant, was attracted to the intel and reached out. His massive hand pinched the paper by its corner, barely able to read tiny letters.

"Sink each of these targets and retrieve their goods and you can be granted the position of the Seventh Division Commander."

Kaido shot up from his seat, his hands clenched into fists.

"WORORO! Damien has been headlining everything for a long time, now it's my time to turn the world upside down!"

He picked up his trusty spiked club and ran out from the hall, leaving dull tremors in his wake.

To Be Continued…

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Author's Corner.

Well, big things keep happening while Damien is in Wano. Some people don't like the political side but in my opinion, it adds depth to the world. It helps with revealing the complexities of governance, piracy, and trade in a world where might, wit, and the capacity for schemes determine who gets to dictate terms.

Images are available on Discord alongside other niche details: https://discord.gg/aJHHHPvb6q