Chapter 963 is titled "Becoming Samurai".
33 years ago, Inuarashi and Nekomamushi left Zou to find Wano Country. After washing up on Wano and encountering Kawamatsu, the three of them were tied up and bullied by some Kuri citizens. However, Oden came and stopped them, and the three of them started following him. Oden started running out of money, and his followers went to steal some from Yasuie. They were caught, but to their surprise he gave them the money with the order to improve their social standing to increase Oden's respectability. They did this, and after three years they were able to create a formal procession during Oden's visit to Sukiyaki in the Flower Capital.
Centuries ago, the Mink Tribe had made a vow with the Kozuki Family to help each other in times of need. When they found out about this, a young Inuarashi and Nekomamushi grew very interested in Wano Country and sailed out to see it. When they finally arrived, however, they and Kawamatsu were tied to poles on Kuri Beach by Wano citizens who decided to burn them at the stake. However, Oden then came out of the nearby ocean with a giant fish to use in making that night's oden soup. When he saw his subjects tormenting the kappa and two minks, he immediately beat them up and reprimanded them for mistreating those who look different. However, to the persecuted trio's shock, he then left without going to free them.
Inuarashi, Nekomamushi, and Kawamatsu were eventually freed and followed Oden back to his residence, where he gave them some oden to eat. Oden recognized Inuarashi and Nekomamushi as members of the Mink Tribe that his father told him about, but wondered what Kawamatsu was. Kawamatsu revealed that he was a fish-man, and he and his mother washed ashore on Wano after their ship sank. The residents persecuted them due to their race and fatally injured his mother by throwing stones, and she told him to hide from persecution by going as a kappa. Oden bid the trio farewell, looking forward to meeting more unique people like them when he set out to sea. However, the trio begged to stay with him.
Oden later talked with Denjiro about their group increasing, saying they were all strong but he was now running low on funds; Denjiro reprimanded Oden for giving another loan to Orochi. Oden's retainers then went to Hakumai to try and steal money from Yasuie, but were caught. To their surprise, however, Yasuie gave them the money they tried to steal as well as an additional amount. He told them to use this money to dress properly, learn manners, and increase their knowledge, saying that they needed to become the best samurai in the country to properly serve Oden when he became the shogun. The retainers obliged to Yasuie's commands, and three years later, it was rumored that they and Oden would be coming to the Flower Capital. The Capital citizens were cautious, believing them to be hoodlums. However, they were surprised as the retainers formed an orderly and dignified procession around Oden, which was so professional it resembled a shogun's procession. Some onlookers were so awestruck that they dropped to their knees. Oden reunited with his father Sukiyaki, and Sukiyaki was glad that his son had become a fine man. Oden thanked him for making him one, surprising Sukiyaki further. Oden had come to see his father because he heard he had fallen ill, but was relieved to see Sukiyaki brimming with energy. However, this would end up being the last time he ever saw his father.
That same year, the Moby Dick washed ashore on Port Itachi, and the Whitebeard Pirates were trapped on Wano for a week until they could repair their ship. They lost all of their supplies due to the cargo hold flooding, so a small group prepared to go into Wano to gather supplies. At the same time, Oden's retainers were put in a panic upon finding out that Oden had run off to Port Itachi after hearing of a pirate ship being spotted there. Whitebeard noticed that Oden was running toward them, and engaged in a powerful clash with the samurai. Oden introduced himself to Whitebeard, saying that he wanted to join his crew.
- It is revealed that the Mink Tribe and the Kozuki Family formed a pact hundreds of years ago.
- How Oden met Inuarashi, Nekomamushi, and Kawamatsu is shown.
- Kawamatsu came to Wano Country with his mother after they were shipwrecked.
- Kawamatsu was ostracized by the locals and one event led to his mother’s death.
- He is confirmed to be a fish-man and he claimed to be a kappa to avoid discrimination. However, he was still persecuted until Oden helped him.
- The full event where the Nine Red Scabbards attempted to rob Shimotsuki Yasuie is seen.
- The Mountain God is revealed to be alive.
- Sukiyaki had fallen ill and Oden visited him. This would be the last time they spoke to each other.
- Orochi worked as a servant for the Kozuki Family 30 years ago.
- Oden met the Whitebeard Pirates when they came to Wano.
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