The worst part... the worst part is that I thought I had dealt with the death of the Merry. As in - I thought I was okay with it. After all, it's been over two years now, that we found out it - or maybe I should say he, now? - couldn't be fixed. And then last chapter... It all started coming back. And somehow it was back, and sailing, carrying them again... And then this chapter, and I was bawling my eyes out. Over something I've been dealing with for two years. So powerful, the emotions Oda's pen and words conjure up inside of me. So powerful that I cry and cry and cry and feel happy at the same time as I ache.
The story continues, but the Merry? The Merry can't go any further now. And that hurts. Farewells always do. But in the end, it couldn't have been more perfect than this. And that's what Oda does. He makes things good, even when they hurt. Maybe especially when they hurt.
I even love the little blurb Jump put in at the end. "It carried our dreams and hopes and smiles. Our Merry..."
So. Now they don't have a ship anymore. But they won. And Odacchi's taking a well-deserved rest next week, so one week with no new chapter, and then - who knows? I'm guessing he'll finally make it official who stays on! It's not that Franky's not looking very likely or anything, but it's still not... Luffy still hasn't claimed nakamaship. And that needs to happen to - someone. Possibly. And they need a ship, even though the thought of another ship carrying them where they need to go feels so strange right now. Even stranger than before. Their Merry...!