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The Stormbringers – Exploring the Meaning of “D.”

Did you heard about a man called “Gol D. Roger”? Well, let’s get into it!

Inherited Will

Oh those panels, how often have they been used for theories and to this day not everything has been extracted from this page alone? Let’s start of by stating the title of the chapter 100 which is “The Legend has begun”. Indeed this is the beginning of the legend that will be told when all is set and done. From this chapter on the idea of the “will of D.” was set and became a major theme of the series. This is a goal post when it comes to the deepest lore of One Piece. This is Monkey D. Dragon’s first and only appearance for hundreds of chapters to come. This page to this day hasn’t been completely analyzed and its meaning is still shrouded in mystery. At the same time we feel to have a good grasp on inherited will and a man’s dreams, but the flow of time is more nebulous. Those three things being connected to the “answer to freedom” is the greatest clue about this mystery but I will come later back to it. At this point I am only talking about the inherited will portion.

Contrary to popular belief there is no supernatural element to the “will of D.” or wills in general. Hold your torches and pitchforks and listen me out. Oda incorporated the idea of wills to explain how the “will of D.” still remains to this day and how it impacts the current story line. The trick he pulled is very simple(according to Doflamingo and therefore Oda the greatest tricks are the simplest) and he spelled it out for us more then once.

Dr. Hiluluk’s story is about the fulfillment of a will even after death. Even though Dr. Hiluluk died his dream came true because people inherited his will. In other words, as long as you are remembered a will can be fulfilled. This is the first instance in One Piece where a will has been fulfilled in the same arc that is has been introduced. We see this fulfillment of wills later on in Skypiea, Fishman Island and even Dressrosa(there is tons more, but lets not overdo it). There is no supernatural element here because it just makes sense that it would work that way. If I remember the wish of my dead ancestor and fulfill it, there is no magic here. That was the point of Dr. Hiluluk’s story and it is the same arc where the “will of D.” has been mentioned for the first time.

This arc is about Hiluluk’s will and how a country and its people have inherited it and ultimately fulfilled it.

This is how the arc has ended, his dream was it to cure the people of Drum Kingdom(and his wish to create Sakura) and he ultimately succeeded. Just to summarize the “will of D.” hasn’t been forgotten and the world still remembers the storm they caused. Individuals throughout the world are aware of the “will of D.” and even have their own versions of the “will of D.”. It is important to note that even though cultures might have forgotten what exactly happened during the void century they do remember that for example “the people of the dawn” will return. Even though its not remembered perfectly some remnants are enough to say that one remembers the “will of D.” and thats why its still alive.

The people of the “D.”

To start off and this might be controversial for some but the importance of “D.” doesn’t lie with the people themselves but what they represent. Clover said as much.

The creation of the Ancient Weapons by the Ancient Kingdom proves that they possessed knowledge and technology that to this day hasn’t been able to be replicated. Their technology was at least a thousand years ahead of their time. Though the Ancient Weapons weren’t the reason that the future World Government would erase the existence of the Ancient Kingdom from the world, the conflict was about ideology. I will come back to those ideals later but first I will make the case that the “D.’s” are the descendants of the Ancient Kingdom. It might be a bit redundant, but I learned that you can’t expect people to know things that one takes for granted. So please don’t jump on my case for being thorough. 

Firstly, the World Government hid the fact that Roger is a “D.” to the world and the next thing Roger does is to explain what the meaning of the “D.” is and that its a story long, long ago and far away.

Whitebeard knows the entire truth from Roger and gives us a preview of what is to come. The people who will fight for the world who inherited the will of the fallen will come. Their flames haven’t been able to be extinguished. Even the void century couldn’t extinguish the flames of the Ancient Kingdom and to this day they prevail. As soon as someone finds that treasure(we find out in the next page the treasure is “One Piece”) this great battle will come that engulfs the whole world. Finding Raftel means that you find out the truth of the world(Rio Ponegylph) and what occurred during the void century. Roger connects Raftel with the “D.’s” and therefore the Ancient Kingdom who left the Rio Poneglyph on Raftel. I could give tons more evidence here, alone the Robin & Rayleigh talk makes the case rock solid but I think most people are already aware of the connection. Sorry, if this part was boring, it will get better now.

The enemy of the dawn

There is one arc in One Piece that is critically not liked because it tried to tell a different story that we aren’t used to. It wasn’t about a fun adventure and exploration but about a deeper message that the series hinted on but never went this far before and showed us what is behind the curtain of the deepest mysteries of the series. I didn’t personally enjoy it as well because I could only grasp the importance of the story years later. I am talking about Dressrosa and the greater story that Oda tried to tell.

Let me summarize the arc in a somewhat different way and I hopefully make a decent enough case to convince you.

  • Dressrosa was a peaceful country that lived together with different races in harmony. It was poor but wasn’t at war or in conflict with any other nation. It was ruled by a benevolent ruler named Riku Dold III. He was just and gave even the most hardened criminals second chances. He changed the hearts of even evil doers and had no prejudice against the Tontatta. They were loyal to him and fought on the behalf of his nation.
  • Someone came to destroy that peace. Doflamingo, a celestial dragon came to take over the nation of Dressrosa. He did so by staging an act which lead people to believe that king Riku is evil and to make himself the “hero”.
  • After this act the people of Dressrosa deemed king Riku to be evil and they hold a grudge against him. They cursed him and his family. Contrary to the fall of house Dold the celestial dragon family became the official ruler.
  • Through the means of the “Hobby Hobby no Mi” the people of Dressrosa became further brainwashed. They lived in a delusion and even forgot how their own neighbouring toys came to be. The toys couldnt reveal the truth(because they were bewitched) and the people forgot who the toys truly were. It was a total system of control and oppression. The people who knew the truth couldn’t reveal it and the public wasn’t even aware that their was a problem to begin with. It was freedom on the surface but ultimately slavery.
  • Enter the “straw hat”. A “D.” and his allies started to win the hearts and minds of the people by showing them a shining example. They are not manipulated by Sugar’s ability and can see the city for what it is. The people who know the truth gather around the Straw Hat and ask them for help. With the help of the Straw hat the will of the people is fulfilled and they break the curse with the take down of Sugar.
  • The masses wake up and realize what is wrong with Dressrosa, they want to take down the cause, a celestial dragon ruler. Doflamingo believes he has a heavenly right to control the masses and is convinced of his “justice”. He told us so himself “Justice will prevail you say? Whoever prevails will become justice!”. Another take of “might is right”. After all is revealed he tries to kill everyone in Dressrosa so people can’t expose his crimes to the outside.
  • After even the Revolutionaries and righteous Marines gather around the “straw hat” and defeat the Donquixote family the “D.” has a showdown with the celestial dragon Doflamingo. Luffy and his allies have awaken Dressrosa and he brings down a “god” from heaven while destroying Dressrosa in the process. It can be now rebuild from new and that is what Dressrosa has wished for dearly. Not to get back at people but to leave the past behind and start from new. A new dawn breaks.

This is the story Oda tried to tell and it wasn’t something we are used from him. He spelled out what we have gathered throughout the series in an arc that is about the “new dawn”. We know from this story which position the “D.'” has in the world and who their enemies are. One can see how Doflamingo’s role is in the greater picture the same role the celestial dragons occupy in the world. What Doflamingo did to Dressrosa is an idea he got from the celestial dragons. They have been doing it for almost a millennia if not longer. They even have the same practices like deception, brain washing, slavery, murder and more. They do everything to accomplish a single goal and that is to keep themselves in power and to uphold the status quo. It’s absolute control over everybody and the end of individualism. What is Akainu’s ambition? It doesn’t matter, he is just a tool for the world government. That is what it does to you, it destroys individuality and the dreams of its people. Their is no will to inherit and definitely no changing of times. It’s one era, for eternity and is being upheld by the same people in control. Once the truth about the world government is exposed the world will see them for who they are. The “D.” will cause another storm and the world will unite take down its true enemy. This is the curse that will be lifted and a “new dawn” will break. The people want the past to be gone and start from new. Without forgiving what has happened in the past one can’t move forward. We have seen this constantly in the series including the Fishman Island arc where the main issue was forgiveness. Both sides did wrong but because both sides couldn’t let go the conflict only increased. One has to start forgiving and to leave the past behind.

The ideals of “D.” 

To know what the ideals of the Ancient Kingdom were we have to look at the one who will fulfill the “will of D.”

If we look at Luffy’s ideals we understand his way of governance. The crew dynamic gives us deep insight into his ideology and it represents a microcosm of the Ancient Kingdom. Luffy has his own dream and path but he allows the Straw hats to have their own dreams and ambitions. They are protecting and cherishing each differences and are fighting under one purpose. The Straw Hats are a very diverse group, they have humans, dead people, cyborg robots, a reindeer and …a liar. Luffy is not wearing a crown but wears a Straw Hat. The leader doesn’t rule by might but because the Straw hats chose to follow him. Luffy found a place for people that otherwise couldn’t have find one. The Straw Hats don’t partake in destroying the dreams of others except if they are themselves destroyers of well being. This is where the importance of freedom comes into play and that nobody has a right to destroy the well beings of others in a pursuit for selfish reasons.

That was the reason why Shanks gave Luffy Roger’s straw hat. He gave it to the person who follows the “will of D.” and their ideology. Shanks has seen first hand how the “D.’s” act and what they believe in. Roger was famous for fighting like a demon when it comes to his nakamas. Luffy allows his nakamas to outgrow him and they all posses amazing skill sets and are all masters in their own right. Chopper is a genius doctor, Nami is the best navigator, Sanji is the best cook, Franky is the best shipwright and you know the rest. They all have their talents and they are allowed to express themselves. No matter what kind of quirky personality they have they are protecting each other. They are growing for each other and not only for themselves. All of them have their own dreams but they share a dream together. All of them inherit the will of the ones that have passed and are willing to fight for the will of the people who are currently living. We see this in many instances like this one.

The Straw Hats shape the current era and are the ones who will accomplish the impossible. Luffy will be the Pirate King and the world will ultimately result in waking up. Those are the ideals that the World Government is fearing. It isn’t about control but accepting the meaning of freedom. Hopefully Roger’s words ring more truthful by now and you hopefully realized that his words are “the will of D.”. They key to understanding Roger’s statement is that it is technically wrong and is referring not to something general but very specific. Just imagine a scenario where a will can be inherited with freedom not being the aim. It’s very easy to imagine that kind of scenario, it happens all the time in the One Piece series, something like an evil ruler giving his bad morals to his son a la celestial dragons. That is why Roger talked about a SPECIFIC will, the one will to inherit One Piece and turn the world upside down (As a side note, I am predicting that those words weren’t Roger’s and he learned them from the Rio Poneglyph). Or…

The “D.’s” are known for having caused a storm, otherwise they wouldn’t have said “again”. The current happenings in the series have already occurred. The “D.’s” have caused a storm that united the world in a similar way to what Luffy is currently doing. That the is the fulfillment of the the “D.” and the will of the Ancient Kingdom. Everyone who gives the Straw Hat a chance eventually sides with him because its in their own self interest. They are getting convinced by his superior ideology and that is why the the world government is preparing to repeat their a “great cleansing”.

By “balance” they mean their grip on the world. They are losing control and want to extinguish the light that will cause them to be exposed. The Ancient Kingdom were the ones who caused a storm that almost showed the world who is really causing the problems. The ones who practice slavery, hatred against the other, exclusion, exploiting their own people and everything that is distilled in the celestial dragons. The same people later on created the World Government after they destroyed the one enemy that could stop them. Thats why they can’t allow the world to know about what they have done and who they truly are. Too bad they don’t understand what they are up against. If you pursuit the true meaning of freedom one becomes…

I hope you enjoyed this theory greatly!

*Theory by Donal D. Trump

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