Elbaf will be the Longest Arc in One Piece
Ok, this thread has been a long time coming because for the life of me I couldn’t understand where Oda was going with this whole Rocks/God Valley/Burned Man plotline, but after doing a reread of Egghead and some of the lore drops we’ve gotten recently, I think its becoming pretty safe to say that Elbaf is about to become the epicenter of One Piece’s Grand War.
There are caveats to this theory but when I say this, I’m not necessarily talking about the World Government being involved or even every party falling here, just that this will be the location everyone ends up fighting over the 4th Road Poneglyph. When I say “Grand War”, I am talking primarily about the 4th Road Poneglyph fight and the fight to even get to Laugh Tale.
Now I’ve created several threads similar to this, but I will reiterate/streamline their points below to drive home the point I’m making. The way I’m going to approach this is strictly by Character and Oda’s narrative habits with each. But hopefully by the end you’ll see what I mean, as not every character is tied to Elbaf, but those that are are inherently tied to those that aren’t.
Anyway, the reason I’m making this hard claim about Elbaf is solely due to Oda’s tendency to tie a bunch of characters together to form arcs. Whether or not their storyline ends here is anyone’s guess, but Im going to list the the factions out below:
– Luffy and his fleet
– Shanks and his fleet
– Blackbeard and his fleet
– Cross Guild and their fleet (i.e. maybe Underworld Allies and Former Shichibukai)
– Akainu’s Marines & SWORD (i.e. Koby and his group)
– Elbaf’s inhabitants
– Big Mom Pirates (not Charlotte Linlin herself)
– All Supernovas
– The Burned Scar Man and his group
– Rocks and/or clones of his crew members (i.e. more people like Stussy and Weevil)
At the moment I am leaving out the Revolutionary Army, Allied Kingdoms like Wano, and World Government proper but they may also play their roles here due to some character relationships. Im not sure.
But anyway, the main the theme of the thread are those specific relationships. If anyone knows, a decent way to guess what future arcs will consist of is to just guess character threads and relationships. The most recent example is Egghead:
– Bonney had an unknown relationship with Kuma (at the time)
– Kuma knew Vegapunk
– Vegapunk works with Kizaru and Sentoumaru
– We get tons of allusions to Vegapunk via SSG stuff prior to the Seraphim reveals.
Now Oda has created a scenario on Egghead where all of these characters are together, including a Gorosei who seems directly responsible for Kuma’s plotline.
Anyway, keep note of this as we go through everything:
1. Strawhat Pirates and their Fleet
In a way, yes, this is objectively obvious lol. But I think discussing this group is worth it to tie together the some of the groups I will end up discussing.
Narratively, we have Usopp and Robin who are likely going to be central to the arc. Robin is mainly justified through her connections to Saul, who is confirmed alive now. Better yet, is the fact that both are connected to Kuzan, who is still highly central to their plight. He has directly explained that his current motivations, whatever they are, seem to be motivated by his past with them. This strongly indicates that Blackbeard’s crew can be tied to Elbaf.
Usopp’s inherent relationship with Elbaf is obvious, and save for the connections to the 4 Giants we have gotten accustomed to (Dorry, Broggy, Oimo and Kaashi), what I do find fascinating is Oda has seemingly confirmed Elbaf does hold some deeper connections to Shanks (and why I think he’ll be back now), which Ill go into later. What I’m implying though is that this should indeed be the arc where Usopp meets his father, Yasopp. Really laying on the brave warrior aspect, something so important to Usopp, intrinsically should and could relate to Yasopp.
Finally, you have the Straw Hat Fleet, which not only is apparently central to a future major incident, but 1 of the 7 captains is in fact an Elbaf native, along with his 4 crew members, Hajrudin. Not only this, but Hajrudin is tied to Cross Guild, which I can imagine a future interaction were Buggy gets pissed at them for leaving. Regarding the rest that are currently relevant:
– Sai and Leo are absolutely on the run now after attacking Charloss, which leads me to think its in fact Fujitora giving them chase for attacking him (but its played as a joke/hes not really trying because he hates Celestial Dragons, for the life of me I dont know what else Fujitora could be doing atm though lol)
– Bartolomeo is currently a target of Shanks, which suggests that if he’s captured or on the run, it holds ground to eventually get the Fleet back together if their members are in trouble by 2 different targets.
2. Shanks and his Fleet
So after rereading it became apparent to me that Shanks does seem to have big connective tissue with Elbaf. Yes, Oda has been making jump around at a ridiculous rate (to Wano for Blackbeard/Ryo, back to Elbaf for Kid, now leaving Elbaf again for Barto or Blackbeard), but the dialogue with his fleet implies they are staying at Elbaf while he comes to visit and leaves:
I.e. they aren’t heading out with him, which means they are probably staying at Elbaf, which further suggests that Shanks will end up returning at some point after he does what he needs to do.
Shanks’ relationships with the Giants are unknown, but he calls them old friends. But more importantly, is he seems to have a very direct relationship with a kid Giant like Luffy was, including another bartender lol. All of this seems to imply Elbaf falls under his territory, which makes sense due to his “viking” motif anyway.
As mentioned above, Yasopp is under his crew, who is tied to Usopp, who will probably be central to the arc for multiple reasons. He is allegedly going after Barto, while trying to find Blackbeard, while ALSO waiting for Luffy lol.
Finally, you have the proclamation from Ryokugyu that they (the Marines) eventually intend to fight the Red Hair Pirates.
It might be safe to say that Elbaf should involve Shanks.
3. Blackbeard and his fleet