The night had come down, engulfing the island with tranquility and a sense of peace. This day was a slow and particularly idle day so Hocha could get home earlier than she usually went. On the way home, Hocha happened to overhear the sound of conversation drifting from somewhere. She had intended to ignore the sound since she wanted to do all the delayed household chore she had been reluctant to finish this week, but some interesting words popped up that she couldn’t help but felt curious.
Eavesdropping was not polite things for a learned woman to do, but the word ‘Robin’ among other particular words made her approach the source of the sound. She had to make sure that the talking people are not someone who intended to do harm to little robin, especially since she found out that the kids were calling little robin a devil and other nasty things after she had somehow found – and eaten – a devil fruit.
Hocha knew how vicious a group of kids could be toward someone they unanimously decided as an outsider, even if those outsiders were not intending to bother them or even join them. It was already bad when she was just someone that didn’t have any parent or adult figure protecting her from harm, doubly so now when some adult on the island even showing blatant dislike to her because of little Robin’s devil fruit ability.
It took a bit of careful check using her hearing before she found out where the sound of conversation from. It came from behind a jutting part of the library tree’s root, beyond some couple of tens or so meter obstacle made of tangles of root that was a bit hard to get over. She dithered, climbing over would mean that she could hear the sound better, but she would be too tired to do her chores when she got back.
She ultimately chose to climb up over the tangle of root and stopped halfway there when it became clear that the people conversing was not kids of the island plotting to hurt robin, but just a teenager? (If she was correct about the owner of the voice judging from the sound and the tone of his voice) teasing his very young little brother about his particular attention to Robin. She was going to climb down and walk home when the topic moved to the little one pestering the teenager for some money to buy a book.
It was encouraging to hear someone wanted to walk the path of seeking knowledge and she would have definitely commend him for his attitude toward learning. But he made her really angry because he cursed and disparaged the professor and scholars of Ohara in his urgent pestering, saying that it was a waste leaving the book to them. She was a member of the Ohara library, and she would not take that lying down.
She was invigorated and renewed her effort to traverse the obstacle, just so she could cuff him on the ear for the insult he spewed out of his mouth. By the time she was near enough, only a couple of meters left to touch the jutting root, the sound of conversation became more complete and clear instead of petering out every time their volume went down.
"... blatantly and openly researching poneglyph! Bunch of dumb and foolish scholars!"
“What’s so dumb about researching it openly? Isn’t their ability to read poneglyph says a lot about their intelligence?”
‘Yeah, tell him that! Scold him until I could get there and told him off myself!’ Hocha backed the teenager up inwardly while huffing puffing, reaching the last root. She was so tired so she just fell down to her butt resting, trying her hardest to take a breath because her stamina was spent.
“There’s a reason why void history stays void history for 800 hundred years!” the little kid furiously replied with a higher pitch.
“Just calm down and take a deep breath, bro.” the teenager replied with the same calm unchanging tone. “You’re incoherent when you’re agitated.”
Hocha could hear the sound of someone taking a deep breath over her shallow exhausted breathing. ‘I need to do more exercise, ugh’. Before long the little brother spoke again.
“The poneglyphs were the only record leftover by ancient people, and it talked about what happened in the void century.” The little brother said with a forced calm tone. “The poneglyph stays when other records are destroyed because they are almost indestructible.”
‘That was kind of accurate summary... where did the little kid learn of it?’ Hocha wondered inwardly.
“The one who destroyed all the record was probably the celestial dragon and the world government.” The kid continued, while the teenager stayed silent.
“They wanted to keep everything happened at that time hidden. At all costs.” The kid paused. ”were the poneglyph something that could easily be destroyed, they would have made it that there were no poneglyph left!”
“Now, explain why you need a lot of money to buy all the book in the tree of knowledge over here instead of slowly reading – and borrowing it – bit by bit?”
“There is a connection, these dumbf... scholar openly researched the poneglyph...” “and?” “...and trying to tell the world the truth about the void century.”
Hocha recalled that it was the reason Olvia sailed the sea and left Robin on her aunt’s family that clearly disliked her. She also wondered what would the little kids said next to connect his needling to void century.
“The truth of void century would threaten the position and claim of the celestial dragon...” the kid snorted“...that they are the one who created the world or some other bulls..”
“Ah, you mean Ohara are going to be targeted by World govt., huh.”
“Yeah, that's it.” The kid huffed ”and when they don’t like something or they were threatened, they will be thorough in making sure that whoever threatened them wouldn’t be able to do that again.”
Hocha had heard the scrap of rumor where the world nobles do outrageous and unreasonable things, and just that scrap of knowledge is enough to make her shiver in fear. She tried to stand up but her strength failed, so she tried to pull herself up slowly using the tree of knowledge’s root’s bark.
“What do you think they are going to do?”
“They will definitely use the... what’s it called? The one where they exterminate the island and everybody living in it, razing it to the ground?”
“They had something like that...?” the teenager’s tone turned into a horrified whisper, and he suddenly focused his gaze on Hocha’s face when she stood up fully and can see the two conversing people.
“...Buster Call... they are going to use buster call on Ohara?” She looked at the little kid, trying her hardest to convey her hope that his conjecture would be proven false.
The kid whirled around in surprise and answered after smoothing his expression.”They would definitely use it. How did you even know what buster call is?”
“I... I heard a rumor...” she grimaced and take a deep breath before continuing ”Would you, would you two be willing to go with me to Professor Clover?”
The teenager stood up and chuckled lowly. When Hocha and the little kid turned their attention to him, he raised his eyebrow and gestured with both hands at Hocha.
“What?” the kid bit our in an annoyed tone while Hocha gave incredulous look at the incomprehensible act of the teenager.
“See, it would be better to discuss things instead of letting people do things but insulting them when you are sure that they are not listening...”
The little kid scowled at the teenager, before turning to Hocha who waited with bated breath “Sure, I’m free anyway.”