A few words on Carrot...
This last development for her feels so... hollow! There's something wrong about it, and I want to address it, as well as share some thoughts on Carrot's future.
Carrot started as a very simple character. A fun young rabbit mink, she hopped into the Sunny and has been considered a strong candidate for crewmate ever since.
Personally, I never felt she was meant to be a crewmate. There was something lacking in that regard. Her personality sure fits the crew really well, there's no doubt at that. She acts like the young sister of the Straw Hat family: energetic, fun-loving, careless to an extent. She interacts really well with Luffy, Chopper and Nami, and bonded with Jinbe, Brook and Sanji.
What she lacked, IMO, was direction. She felt like a temporary companion to compensate the reduced crew size in WCI. She had no clear purpose, personal objective or higher drive of her own, thought. She was there for fun, and, as such, I expected her arc would be about maturing.
She also clearly was meant to showcase what the minks can do. We saw most of mink's skills through her, specially the sulong transformation.
So, in my mind, her role was to tag along, to help crew interaction, to mature, and to show what the minks can do. She'd eventually leave.
Pedro's death added more to her. It gave her a kind of a sad backstory. It was just being built in the present rather than be a reveal about her past. And his words to her hinted at an improved role ahead:
"Keep going forward."
"Everyone has its chance to shine."
Still, I never thought she'd join the crew. After her strong showing in WCI, thought, I was sure she'd have a great conclusion in Wano.
Except it never happened. To me, Carrot was one of the worst handled characters lately. I felt Oda did a big disservice for her fans.
Despite, or maybe because, her arc being mishandled in Onigashima, I wouldn't bat an eye if Carrot's next development were to return to Zou. Maybe she had enough adventure and just wanted to be with the minks again, to rest and gain strength for the future.
But what we got in Ch 1056 makes no sense at all. Mink ruler? Why?
Her character arc wasn't about gaining or showing leadership. She had no personal drive nor meaningful moments to build that up.
This conclusion feels displaced. And she doesn't feel happy about it either.
So, this gives me the feeling that Carrot's character arc isn't over yet. Because this development does not fit her nor is wanted by her, it really feels like Oda is just giving her a new reason to stow away in the Sunny again: to mature further and become worthy of her position.
Maybe Oda is just mishandling things again. Maybe Carrot will accept her duty and return to Zou to lead the minks. But it feels so wrong! It feels like a setup for something else!
Let's be clear: I'm still not in the "Carrot will join" camp, but I'm less sure of it than I was before 1056. I'm now intrigued by her fate.
So, if we see Carrot accepting her duty and waving goodbye to the Straw Hats before they leave Wano, it's over. Her arc will have a really weak conclusion, but the deal is done.
But if we don't see her again before the end of Wano, hen the chances that she will pop up again in the Sunny will be really really high. (Which doesn't mean she joins the crew yet, but her chances for joining will keep going until it's made official)
"But if she stows away again, she's a traitor to the minks and will feel an undeserving crewmate to the audience."
One Piece is about freedom. If she chooses to go, I'm sure the minks will be shown to be unsurprised and understanding, because that's where Carrot's heart is. That's why, for example, I always said Yamato would stay in Wano by his own will, not because of any duty or pity. I see Yamato's journey as he befriending Momonosuke and in the end happily choosing to be by his friend's side.
So, TLDR: Carrot's character arc does not seem to have reached its conclusion, and I, even thought I still place more chance of her not going with the crew right now, I wouldn't be surprised if Oda ends up keeping her around after Ch 1056.