"Ah, there you are Hero-san."
Usopp whirled around and found himself face to face with Robin, the archaeologist looking decidedly awake despite it being past midnight. She was wearing a white nightgown, the night breeze fluttering the ends of it around as she moved a bit closer.
"Have you seen Longnose-kun?"
"He's resting at the moment but I can take a message for him." Usopp tried to focus on Robin's eyes and not the hand that was working it's way up to his neck, untying the red cape on his shoulders.
As it fell to the ground, Robin spoke once more.
"Can I see your mask?"
She didn't let him reply before removing it, leaving the sniper's face bare before her gaze, which slowly moved to the yellow painted object in her right hand.
"It's a beautiful concealment. And a very brave idea but ideas aren't enough to free someone, don't you think?"
"W-what do you mean?" Usopp said, legs starting to shake as she started to explain.
"An idea can set things in motion and some can even change the world."
Now she was looking at him, her blue eyes locking with his own as she let the mask fall to the ground.
"But it takes a brain to formulate an idea," here Robin sifted a few fingers through some of his curls, "A heart to give it purpose," a palm pressed against Usopp's heart, "And lips...lips to decide whether to ignore this idea or act upon it."
Her lips tasted like secrets, hidden away from all who sought to discover them. He could spend a lifetime trying to uncover them and wouldn't care if he learned nothing in all that time.
Once their lips parted, Robin was smiling the first genuine smile Usopp had seen her give.
"I love you."
The words had rushed out of his mouth.
He was prepared for rejection, for silence, but what he got caused his eyes to widen.
Robin was laughing.
When she stopped a few moments later, she gave him one of her usual enigmatic smiles.
"I have a feeling that the Brave Captain Usopp says that to a lot of women." But she didn't move away from him.
"Just Usopp," he replied. " And I wasn't just saying that Robin."
A pair of arms pressed on his shoulders then and the sniper was soon sitting on the planks, Robin lowering herself beside him. Her head pressed against his right shoulder and her arms found their way around either side of him in an embrace.
"Tell me a story," she whispered, "Something fantastic and silly."
He didn't deny her, the liar spinning a tale of glorious deeds done by a talking bag of radishes.
The sniper didn't know how much time had passed since he started his story but he soon felt Robin's body relax and her eyelids start to close.
"I love you as well, Usopp."
Usopp dared to stroke her hair after her confession, the arms around his middle hugging him a little more as he did so.
Eventually they fell asleep as the wind carried the two and their ship out of this story and into another.