Hey guys, I'm back with another new chapter! I'm glad to see that most of you seemed to enjoy the last chapter! In this chapter, we'll see Wendy officially join Fairy Tail and have a small little break before the start of the Edolas arc of this story. So, I hope you're all looking forward to that! Well, that's all I wanted to say, so let's get to the fic!
Disclaimer: I don't own Fairy Tail or any of its characters
(Two Days Later: Fairy Tail Guild Hall)
"And with all that being said, for both Carla and I...thank you so much for inviting us to join Fairy Tail!" Wendy said with a large smile, performing a slight bow. "Please take good care of us!" After a few moments of deafening silence, Wendy slowly raised her head. She felt a familiar pang of nervousness when she saw that pretty much the entire guild was staring at her. "U-Uh...did I say something weird?"
"WAH! She's so cute!"
"She has a female Happy too!"
In an instant, Wendy and Carla found themselves surrounded by excited guild members. Not used to receiving compliments, the blue-haired dragon slayer's face was soon flushed bright red. Wendy's nervous demeanor slowly began to fade away as she tried her best to answer the flurry of questions being flung at her. It didn't take long for Wendy's bright smile to return, the members of Fairy Tail making her feel welcome almost immediately.
"We're back, master." Erza said as she sat on the barstool next to Makarov. "The mission was a success."
"Well done! You even managed to bring us two cute new members!" Makarov said with a grin, giving the scarlet-haired knight a thumbs-up. "With all this Nirvana business out of the way, things should hopefully be peaceful for a while." Clapping his hands, Makarov hopped up onto this feet. "Now, let's focus on welcoming Wendy and Carla!"
"Lu-chan, welcome back!" Levy exclaimed as she energetically waved to the blonde celestial spirit mage. Glancing over, Lucy saw that Levy was sitting at one of the tables in the center of the guild, with Jet and Droy across from her. However, Lucy was surprised to see that Gajeel was actually sitting right next to Levy. The Solid Script mage didn't seem disturbed by his presence at all. "Come over and tell us how your mission went! It looks like it was really exciting!"
"Levy-chan! It's so good to be back!" Lucy cheered, dashing over and giving Levy a tight hug. "Our mission was absolutely crazy! You won't believe what happened!"
"So Gajeel..." Natsu said with a teasing smirk as he sat down on the edge of the table next to the iron dragon slayer. Making sure that Levy and Lucy were fully engrossed in their own conversation, Natsu leaned in a bit closer. "Looks like things are going well between you and Levy."
"Put a sock in it, Salamander." Gajeel growled, crossing his arms over his chest. "I'm still taking this shit slow. I managed to convince her to go on ONE mission with me, but those bastards Jet and Droy tagged along too and watched me like hawks the entire time. I barely had any chances to talk with her, and definitely not in private." Releasing a heavy sigh, Gajeel slammed his head onto the table. "I just want a chance to talk with her in peace damn it."
"It'll be alright buddy, just stay strong. I'm sure you'll have your chance soon." Natsu said in a sympathetic tone as he patted Gajeel on the back. "Why don't you go say hi to Wendy."
"Wendy?" Gajeel asked in a confused tone, picking his head up off the table. "Who the hell is that?"
"She's the newest member of our guild." Natsu explained with a grin as he pointed towards where Wendy was standing. "And she's a sky dragon slayer too."
"Huh!? The hell did you just say?!" Gajeel exclaimed, bolting upright in his seat, his blood-red eyes locking onto Wendy. "There's no way that friggin' pipsqueak is a dragon slayer!"
"Oh, but she is..." Natsu said as he leaned in closer once again. "And get this...she can use two different types of dragon slayer magic, just like me."
"Oh, now I know you're fuckin' lying." Gajeel growled, his eyes narrowing slightly. "I refuse to believe that, that little shrimp can do something like that."
"I saw it with my own eyes." Natsu said as he placed a hand over his heart, holding up his other hand as if he was under oath. "We fought against a poison dragon slayer on our mission, and Wendy ended up eating a bunch of his magic. And I don't know how it happened, but her sky dragon slayer magic ended up fusing together with the poison dragon slayer magic. It was absolutely wild man."
"You really ain't lying..." Gajeel said in disbelief, turning his head to glance back at Wendy. "How can she-" The iron dragon slayer stopped dead in his tracks when he spotted a small creature standing next to Wendy. "O-Oi...Salamander...is that a cat standing next to Wendy?"
"Huh...oh yeah! That's Carla!" Natsu replied with a grin as he pointed towards the small white cat. "She and Wendy have been partners for years, just like Happy and I!"
"I see..." Gajeel muttered in a suddenly depressed tone, before slumping in his seat, slamming his head back onto the table. "Salamander...and this new Wendy girl...we're all dragon slayers...but where's my cat!? Where's my second dragon slayer magic!? Son of bitch, they're both pulling ahead of me!"
"What the hell is his problem?" Natsu thought as he quirked an eyebrow, watching as Gajeel appeared to be having a mild panic attack. "Ah whatever, he'll get over it."
"Hello, Natsu." The pink-haired dragon slayer was pulled from his thoughts when he heard a familiar voice. Turning around, Natsu saw Juvia was standing there with a smile on her face. "Juvia is glad you made it back okay."
"Hey, Juvia!" Natsu exclaimed with a toothy grin, hopping off the table. "I'm surprised you aren't talking to the ice princess."
"Gray-sama wished to be alone right now...he made that quite clear." Juvia said with a hint of sadness in her voice as she clasped her hands together. "But Juvia hasn't given up. She will try again later."
"That son of a bitch..." Natsu thought, a frown spreading across his face. "Why can't he just give her a damn chance."
"Juvia would love to hear about your mission later." Juvia said with a smile as a faint blush spread across her face. "Maybe we could get lunch tomorrow?"
"Sure! That sounds great!" Natsu exclaimed, practically bouncing with excitement. "It's been forever since we hung out together!"
"It will be nice to sit down and catch up with you, Natsu." Juvia said as she clapped her hands together. "Juvia bets you've been on so many amazing adventures! You'll have to tell her all about them!"
"Oh, you wouldn't believe some of the stuff that I've been up to!" Natsu said with a grin, rubbing the back of his head. "My stories will knock your socks off!"
"Well, Juvia can't wait to hear all about them." Juvia said as she gave a courteous bow, before turning around and walking towards where Gray was seated. "Juvia will see you later, Natsu."
"I'll see ya, Juvia!" Natsu exclaimed, energetically waving to the bluenette water mage. With a beaming smile, Natsu sat back down on the edge of the table. "Looks like taking things slow with Juvia is starting to pay off! I can't rush things with her."
"Natsu! Natsu!" Wendy cheered as she excitedly ran up to the pink-haired dragon slayer. "This place is amazing! The people here are so nice too!"
"I'm glad you like it here, Wendy!" Natsu said with a smile, patting the blue-haired dragon slayer on the head. "I know you'll make tons of friends!"
"So, this is the person everyone is so worked up over?" Mirajane said as she suddenly appeared behind Wendy, smiling warmly at the young girl. "You're Wendy, right? Natsu has told me all about you."
"WAH! You're the REAL Mirajane-san!" Wendy gushed, her eyes lighting up as she stared in awe at the beautiful barmaid. "I've seen you in the Weekly Sorcerer so many times! You're just as gorgeous in real life!"
"Oh, why thank you!" Mirajane said with a chuckle as she waved dismissively. "You're so cute too, Wendy."
"Kya! I can't believe-" Wendy stopped mid-sentence when a familiar scent hit her nose. Sniffing several times, Wendy stepped closer towards Mirajane. "You're...one of Natsu's mates aren't you?"
"Heh heh, there's no beating the nose of dragon slayer." Mirajane said with a smile as she sat down next to Natsu, pressing her massive breasts against his arm. She would have loved to kiss or hug him, but she had to be careful with her affections while in the guildhall. "Yes, I am one of Natsu's mates. Oh, and please just call me Mirajane or Mira, no need to be so formal with me."
"I can't believe that THE Mirajane is one of Natsu's mates..." Wendy muttered, looking back and forth between Natsu and Mirajane several times. Suddenly, Wendy looked slightly upset, staring down at her feet. "First Lucy and Erza, and now Mirajane...Natsu is surrounded by so many beautiful women."
"Ah, I see what's going on here..." Mirajane said with a knowing look as she stepped out of her seat. Quickly walking around the table, Mirajane wrapped an arm around Wendy's shoulders. Mirajane swiftly spun around, pulling the blue-haired dragon slayer just out of Natsu's earshot. With a devious smile, Mirajane stood in front of Wendy, resting her hands on her hips. "So Wendy, I'm guessing you like Natsu too?"
"Yes..." Wendy replied, nodding her head as a slight blush spread across her face. "I know in my heart that Natsu is my destined mate. He's the one I'll be with for the rest of my life."
"My, so mature, even at your age." Mirajane said as she decided to give up on the idea of teasing the blue-haired dragon slayer. "So, what do you plan on doing? I may love Natsu with all my heart, but he can be rather dense when it comes to romance."
"Well, it's my birthday soon, and I'll be turning 16..." Wendy trailed off for a moment, twiddling her thumbs as she struggled to find the right words. "If all three of you are okay with it...I was hoping that I could tell Natsu how I feel about him then...and if things go well...we'll officially become mates."
"Don't be so nervous Wendy, you just need to be honest and tell Natsu how much you love him." Mirajane said with a motherly smile as she gently squeezed the blue-haired dragon slayer's shoulders. "Knowing Natsu, he'll reciprocate your feelings. From the things he's told me already, he cares about you deeply, Wendy."
"That makes me feel a bit better..." Wendy said, clutching a hand over her heart. "I just need to be more confident."
"That's the spirit." Mirajane said as she guided Wendy towards the bar. Reaching behind the counter, Mirajane pulled out a guild mark stamper. "Now, why don't we make you joining Fairy Tail official?"
"Yes please!" Wendy said with a bright smile, turning her shoulder towards Mirajane. "I'd like my mark in blue and on my shoulder, please!"
"Of course!" Mirajane said sweetly as she pressed the stamper against Wendy's shoulder. After a brief flash of light, Mirajane pulled the stamper away, revealing a fresh Fairy Tail guild mark. "There you go! You're now an official member of Fairy Tail!"
"Wow! I'm so happy!" Wendy cheered, literally jumping for joy. As soon as Wendy's feet touched the ground, she took off running. "I have to show Natsu!"
"Alright, you brats! Listen up!" Makarov yelled in a slightly inebriated tone as hopped up onto the stage in the center of the guild, raising up a mug of beer. "We're having a welcoming party for Wendy and Carla! So, really let loose! Show them how we do it in Fairy Tail!" Letting out a hearty laugh, Makarov thrust his mug of beer towards the bar. "Mira-chan will keep the booze flowing all night!"
Almost instantly, the entire guild erupted into a chorus of cheers and shouts. Without warning, Wendy found herself hoisted up into the air, her new guildmates carrying her across the hall. Wendy couldn't help the massive smile that spread across her face, not used to being surrounded by this much praise and attention. The blue-haired dragon burst out in joyful laughter as she basked in the affection the members of Fairy Tail were giving her. Soon the guildhall was filled with music and singing as Mirajane took her spot on the stage, the party going into full swing.
"This place is so fun, right Carla!?" Wendy asked, finally managing to free herself from the crowd of people hounding her with questions. "I've never seen a guild like this!"
"I will admit that it is pretty lively..." Carla said as she crossed her arms over her chest. "A bit too noisy though."
(A Few Days Later)
"Are you settling in well, Wendy?" Lucy asked, slipping off her jacket as she sat down next to the blue-haired dragon slayer. "Have you started to learn your way around town?"
"Yes, I'm doing fine, thanks for asking, Lucy...although I still get lost around town from time to time..." Wendy replied with a chuckle as she set down a pamphlet she was reading. "I've been looking up information about the girl's dorm and I'm interested in moving in there. I know that Erza lives there, but I was wondering why you don't, Lucy?"
"I only heard about Fairy Hills recently actually..." Lucy said, before releasing a heavy sigh and resting her head on the table. "And even if I wanted to live there, the rent is like 100,000 jewels a month...I would have to work nonstop to be able to afford that."
"Hey! Luce! Wendy!" Natsu exclaimed with a toothy grin as he approached the table, Happy floating beside him. "Morning you two!"
"Good morning, Natsu!" Wendy beamed, energetically waving towards the pink-haired dragon slayer. "Come sit down with us!"
"So, Natsu..." Lucy said with a sly smile as she leaned in close, her mate sitting across from her. "How was your little 'date' with Juvia the other day?"
"Ugh, you're as bad as Mira sometimes..." Natsu groaned in annoyance, pinching the bridge of his nose. "And for your information, it was not a date. Juvia and I just got lunch and caught up. She's still ga-ga over the ice princess, for reasons I will never understand."
"Oh, is that a hint of jealousy I hear in your voice, Natsu Dragneel?" Lucy teased as she got up and moved to sit next to Natsu. It wasn't often that Lucy got to mess with her pink-haired lover, so she took full advantage of the situation. Chuckling to herself, Lucy poked Natsu's cheek. "Who would have thought you'd ever be jealous of Gray."
"I'm not jealous of the fucking ice princess..." Natsu growled through grit teeth, tightly balling his fists underneath the table. He tried his best to hide the fact that Lucy's little jabs were getting to him, but was doing an awful job. Releasing a heavy sigh, Natsu rested his head on his palm, a faint blush on his face. "I just don't get what she sees in that bastard...especially when he ignores her all the damn time..." Spotting Juvia across the guildhall, Natsu watched her grab a request off the board. "If it were me, Juvia would never be ignored...I'd make sure she was never lonely again."
"Um, excuse me for butting in..." Wendy spoke up as she awkwardly raised her hand to get Natsu and Lucy's attention. "But is Juvia-san one of Natsu's destined mates?"
"Yes, she is..." Lucy replied, momentarily stopping her teasing. "But the problem is, Juvia is infatuated with Gray right now. So, Natsu is taking things slow with her right now."
"I see..." Wendy muttered as she hummed to herself, appearing to be contemplating something. "Why don't you just tell Juvia-san how you feel, Natsu?"
"Trust me, I would love to..." Natsu said, drumming his fingers on the table. "But I can't force my feelings onto Juvia, things need to be natural between us. If she wants to be with Gray...I won't stop her."
"I'm sure things will work out." Lucy said with a smile as she rested her hand on top of Natsu's. "You and Juvia have a great connection, and you two get along very well. I'm sure if you just keep it up she'll come around eventually."
"Of course, I'm not giving up on her." Natsu said, gently squeezing Lucy's hand. "Juvia is-" The pink-haired dragon slayer was cut off when the sounds of ringing bells echoed out. Suddenly the entire guild was hustling and bustling, with people dashing about in excitement. A massive smile spread across Natsu's face as he practically leaped out of his seat. "Do you guys know what those bells mean!? Gildarts is coming back!" Without another word, the pink-haired dragon slayer sprinted towards the front of the guild. However, he stopped when he reached the bar, spotting Cana sitting by herself. The brunette card mage looked rather depressed, slowly nursing her drink. Not one to ignore his friends, Natsu walked over and took a seat at the bar next to her. "Oi, what's up Cana? You look pretty down."
"It's nothing Natsu..." Cana replied in a slightly slurred tone as she took a long sip of her drink. "Don't worry about me, I'm fine, really."
"You don't look fine." Natsu said, quirking an eyebrow and leaning in a bit closer. "I won't say anything to anyone else if you don't want me to. Just talk to me Cana."
"Ugh, why do you have to be so damn nice..." Cana muttered underneath her breath as she roughly set her drink down on the counter, catching the pink-haired dragon slayer off guard. "Just take a damn hint Natsu, please leave me alone."
"C'mon, don't be like that Cana." Natsu said with a grin, wrapping an arm around the brunette card mage's shoulders. "Gildarts is coming back to town! How about you and I join the party with everyone else?" However, Natsu was surprised when he felt Cana's entire body suddenly tense up. "Cana, is everything alright?"
"I said leave me alone, damn it!" Cana exploded as she whipped around and slapped Natsu's arm away. Shooting the pink-haired dragon slayer a fierce glare, Cana got out of her seat and stormed out of the guildhall. "The last thing I want to hear right now is that bastard's name!"
"What the hell was that all about?" Natsu muttered, staring in the direction Cana had went. Releasing a light sigh, Natsu hopped off the barstool he was sitting on. "I'll check on her later, I would just piss her off more if I went after her now." Resting his hands behind his head, Natsu casually strolled towards the guild's entrance. "I wonder if Gildarts can give me any advice?"
"Gildarts?" Wendy asked in a confused tone as she quirked an eyebrow. "Who's that?"
"I've never actually met him..." Lucy explained, shrugging her shoulders. "But from what I've heard, he's the strongest mage in Fairy Tail."
"Really!?" Wendy exclaimed as her eyes lit up in surprise. "There are already so many strong mages in this guild!" Turning around in her seat, Wendy watched as the entire guild went wild, breaking out into another massive party. "What's with all the excitement though? It's like a festival."
"This guild is utterly outrageous..." Carla huffed, crossing her arms over her chest. "They spend way too much time partying."
"What's wrong with having a bit of fun?" Mirajane asked with a smile as she set down a cup of coffee for Lucy and some juice for Wendy. "And besides, there's more than enough reason for everyone to be excited."
"Thanks for the coffee, Mira." Lucy said, before taking a quick sip. Setting her cup back down, Lucy watched as two guild members clanked two mugs of beer together, before proceeding to chug them. "I get that Gildarts is famous and all, but this seems like a little...much."
"Well, Gildarts has been gone quite a long time..." Mirajane explained as she held up three fingers. "If I remember correctly, it's been at least three years."
"Three years?!" Lucy exclaimed, nearly spitting out the coffee she was drinking. "What the hell has he been doing!?"
"He's been working of course." Mirajane replied as she set her tray down and sat down next to Lucy. "He usually does S-rank jobs, but he's also taken numerous SS-rank jobs as well. But, I heard that he has been tasked with completing a ten-year quest too!" Both Lucy and Wendy's eyes widened when they heard this. "No one in our guild has been able to complete a quest like that before. That's why it's been designated a ten-year quest." Suddenly Mirajane leaned in, her voice lowering as if she was telling a secret. "But what's even more amazing than all that is...Gildarts has taken on a 100-year quest before!"
"N-No way..." Lucy muttered in shock, feeling a chill run down her spine. "Do you mean that...it's a quest that has been posted for 100 years?!"
Before Mirajane could explain further, a winged megaphone flew into the guildhall and began to shout a series of orders.
"Everyone in Magnolia, please be prepared! We are changing into a Gildarts Shift! You all need to get into position right away! The message will repeat!"
"Um Mira, what exactly is a Gildarts Shift?" Wendy asked as she got up out of her seat. "It sounds kinda scary."
"Well let's head outside and you'll see." Mirajane said with a smile, standing up and gesturing towards the guildhall's front doors. "It's something quite special." Both Lucy and Wendy looked at each other, before shrugging and following the white-haired barmaid towards the door. However, as the trio neared the guild's entrance, the ground beneath them began to rumble. When the doors swung open, Lucy's jaw hit the floor as she watched the town literally begin to separate, with walls rising out of the ground to create a single straight path through Magnolia. The newly formed pathway stretched from Magnolia's southern entrance all the way towards the guild's front doors.
"W-What the hell..." Lucy muttered in awe as she stared at the bizarre display wide-eyed. "The town was divided in two."
"Gildarts uses Crush magic that smashes everything he touches to pieces." Mirajane explained with a smile, chuckling to herself. "When he's not careful, he'll usually end up walking through town and wrecking people's homes."
"Is he an idiot!? I would hope the strongest person in Fairy Tail would be a bit more cautious!" Lucy exclaimed as her eyes widened in shock. "I guess it makes sense now why they had to restructure the entire town."
"Wah! This is so cool!" Wendy cheered, clapping her hands together. "Isn't it amazing, Carla!?"
"Sure..." Carla said as she rolled her eyes. "Amazingly stupid."
"Hey! There he is!" Natsu exclaimed, suddenly pushing his way towards the front of the crowd, pointing towards an approaching figure. A toothy grin spread across Natsu's face as his fingers began to crackle with electricity. "I can't wait to show him how strong I've gotten."
As Gildarts walked up the guild's front steps, Lucy finally got a good look at the supposed strongest mage in Fairy Tail. Gildarts was a tall, muscular man with shoulder-length orange hair, which was slicked back, and a stubbly beard. His body appeared to be quite muscular, visible even underneath the cloak he was wearing. Gildarts' attire was rather simple, he wore a long, black, high-collared, and tattered cloak with shoulder plates. Then, around his waist, he wore a simple belt. He also wore loose-fitting dark pants, complete with an armored waist-guard bearing plate similar to the ones on his shoulders, tucked inside simple boots. Lastly, he had a battered sleeping bag and pack wrapped around his back with a frayed rope.
"Welcome back, Gildarts." Mirajane greeted with a bright smile as she approached the tired-looking man. "It's good to have you back."
"Huh..." Gildarts muttered, stroking his chin as he glanced around the guildhall. "Excuse me miss, but I'm pretty sure a guild named Fairy Tail was supposed to be around here."
"You're standing in it." Mirajane said with a chuckle as she pointed towards a banner with Fairy Tail's logo. "And it's me, Mirajane."
"Mira..." Gildarts said as he leaned in closer, looking the white-haired barmaid over from head to toe. After a few moments, his eyes widened in shock. "Wow! It's really is you, Mira! You look so different! I'm loving the pink streaks in your hair, super cool! Oh, and it looks like the guild's been renovated!"
"Oi Gildarts!" Natsu exclaimed, charging towards the crash mage. "It's been too long! Let's fight!"
"Oho! Natsu!" Gildarts said with a grin as he rested his hands on his hips. "Long time no see!" Laughing wildly, Natsu lunged towards Gildarts. "Sorry man, we'll fight next time." Looking almost effortless, Gildarts grabbed Natsu and tossed him towards the ceiling. Expecting the little spat to be over, Gildarts began to walk towards the bar. However, he was stopped in his tracks when Natsu suddenly appeared in front of him once again, materializing from a streak of orange electricity. "What...isn't that Laxus' move? When did Natsu learn that?"
"You're as strong as ever Gildarts!" Natsu beamed with a massive smile, holding up a fist coated in vibrant blue flames. "But I've gotten stronger too!"
"Oh, now isn't this interesting..." Gildarts said with a smirk as he rolled his shoulders and cracked his neck, dropping his packs onto the ground. "Okay Natsu, how about we do the usual?" Everyone else in the guild wisely took several steps back, giving both mages a good amount of space. "You get one chance to attack me. If you can move me at all, I'll acknowledge that you've gotten stronger." Gildarts' smirk turned devious as he cracked his knuckles. "But if you can't, I'm putting your ass in the dirt!"
"I'm getting fired up!" Natsu roared, blue flames now coating his entire body. After a brief staredown, Natsu sprinted towards Gildarts, leaving a trail of fire in his wake. Gildarts stood his ground, not moving a muscle, smirk still plastered on his face. When Natsu was only a few feet away, he leaped into the air, an explosion of fire off his legs rocketing him towards Gildarts. "Fire Dragon's Detonating Fist!"
Cocking his arm back, Natsu slammed his fist directly into Gildarts' stomach. The pink-haired dragon slayer winced slightly, feeling as if his fist had slammed into a solid brick wall. Despite this, Natsu pushed forward, letting out a dragon-like roar as both he and Gildarts became engulfed in blue flames. Everyone watching the fight had to step back even further from the intense flames, shielding their eyes from their blinding light. After a few more moments, the flames eventually died down, revealing who the winner was. Despite the flashy display, Gildarts was still standing exactly where he had been, looking no worse for wear. The only indication that he had literally been engulfed in flames was the smoke coming off his cloak. Natsu stood in front of Gildarts, panting slightly with his fist still pressed against the Crush mage's stomach.
"No way..." Lucy gasped as she stared at Gildarts in utter shock. "He didn't even move an inch."
"Tough luck Natsu..." Gildarts teased, shrugging his shoulders. "But that was pretty damn impressive. I haven't felt flames that intense...in a very long time. Now, it's time for-"
"We're not done yet." Natsu said as he looked up at Gildarts, a mischievous smirk on his face. "My attack isn't over yet." Before Gildarts could even question what Natsu meant, he was suddenly hit in the stomach by a small, yet powerful explosion. Everyone in the guild watched in stunned silence as Gildarts went skidding back a few feet. But no one was more stunned than Natsu himself. The pink-haired dragon slayer looked down at his smoking fist, before turning his gaze back towards Gildarts. Once the realization of what had happened hit Natsu, he began to tremble slightly. But he was trembling in pure joy, rather than fear, and it didn't take long for that joy to burst out of Natsu. "FUCK YEAH! I DID IT!"
Instantly, the pink-haired dragon slayer was mobbed by his fellow guild members, all of them praising him for his small, yet impressive victory. Gildarts stood in shock for several moments, staring down at the smoking impact mark on his stomach. Gildarts' shock didn't last long though and his smirk returned, patting away the smoke. The crowd surrounding Natsu soon began to separate, allowing Gildarts himself to approach the pink-haired dragon slayer. With a hearty laugh, Gildarts slapped Natsu on the back, nearly knocking the poor boy off his feet. Wrapping an arm around Natsu's shoulders, Gildarts pulled him in close.
"Well, that sure was a surprise!" Gildarts exclaimed, before ruffling Natsu's hair. "You really have gotten stronger Natsu! Who knows, someday soon you may actually be able to knock me on my ass!"
"That was quite the entrance, Gildarts." Makarov suddenly spoke up from his spot on the bar's counter. "You've only been back a few minutes and you're already causing a ruckus."
"Oh, master!" Gildarts said, perking up as he released Natsu and quickly walked over to the bar. "It's been too long! Did you get taller!?"
"Enough with the jokes..." Makarov said as he released a light sigh. "How was your mission?"
"Oh, that? HAHAHAHA!" Gildarts laughed heartily, rubbing the back of his head. "Nope, I couldn't do it."
"That can't be true!?"
"There's no way Gildarts failed a quest!"
"Even though he's the strongest mage in Fairy Tail..." Lucy thought as she stared at Gildarts in shock. "What on earthland was that 100-year quest?"
"I see...even you couldn't do it..." Makarov said, releasing a light sigh as his brow furrowed slightly. "Well, there's nothing that can be done."
"Sorry for staining the guild's name." Gildarts said with a weak chuckle as he leaned against the bar next to Makarov. "My bad, Master."
"No, it's fine. I'm just glad you came back unharmed." Makarov said, crossing his arms over his chest. "As far as I'm aware, you're the first person who's come back from this quest alive."
"If that's all, I'm gonna head home and rest up." Gildarts said with a grunt as he pushed off the bar's counter. "Damn, I'm so tired..." As Gildarts walked out of the guild, he stopped when he reached Natsu. "Oi Natsu, stop by my place later. I've got something important to show you." With a wave, Gildarts proceeded to walk straight through the nearest wall, causing it to crumble to pieces. "Well, I'll see you guys later."
"Leave through the damn door next time!" Makarov exclaimed, angrily pumping his fist in the air. With a heavy sigh, Makarov calmed back down. "Damn kids..."
(Later That Day: Outside of Gildarts' Home)
"What do you think Gildarts brought me, Happy?" Natsu asked with a toothy grin as he stood outside Gildarts' home. "I hope it's some rare fire or lightning from a foreign country!"
"I wonder what it is!" Happy exclaimed, before hopping into the air and floating next to Natsu. "I hope it's a bunch of exotic fish!"
"Hey Gildarts, we're here!" Natsu cheered as he threw open the door to Gildarts' slightly rundown home. "Thanks for inviting us!"
"Yo Natsu..." Gildarts said with a teasing smile, waving to the pink-haired dragon slayer as he leaned forward in his seat. "I just have to know, how are things with you and Lisanna? I know you and Erza have always been close, but it seemed like you two were really hitting it off when I left. Now don't be shy, tell me all the details." However, after almost a full minute of receiving no reply, Gildarts quirked an eyebrow when he saw the troubled look on Natsu's face. "What's up kid? Did something happen between you and Lisanna?"
"Lisanna died..." Natsu replied barely above a whisper as he tightly balled his fists. "Two years ago."
"O-Oi...are you serious..." Gildarts said, his happy and carefree demeanor deflating instantly. "Shit...so that's why Mira looked so different...damn it...I'm so sorry Natsu, I didn't know."
"It's fine...I've..." Natsu's eyes narrowed slightly as he stared down at his feet, not even bothering to finish his sentence. "Why did you really call me here Gildarts? I doubt you just wanted to gossip."
"Ah, I was hoping to get some light chit-chat in before we got to the heavy stuff..." Gildarts said, before releasing a heavy sigh. "Listen well, Natsu...during my mission...I met a dragon."
"What?!" Natsu exclaimed as he instantly perked up, quickly grabbing a chair and sitting right in front of Gildarts. "Tell me everything."
"From what you've told me about Igneel and Valinor, this was a completely different dragon." Gildarts explained, his tone suddenly becoming dark as he leaned forward in his seat, staring down at his feet. "It was pitch black...with light blue markings all across its body."
"Where did you see this dragon?" Natsu asked as he got out of his seat and walked towards a map Gildarts had pinned on the wall. "It couldn't have been anywhere close, right?"
"It was at the sacred mountain, Zonia..." Gildarts replied, tightly clenching his fists. "That's where I failed my mission." Gildarts paused for a moment, watching the conflicted look on Natsu's face. "Heh, you have grown a bit since I last saw you, Natsu. I was expecting you to be halfway out the door already."
"Don't think I didn't notice all those new injuries you have..." Natsu said as he turned back around and returned to his seat. "That dragon...it really tore you up, didn't it?"
"HAHA! Damn right it did!" Gildarts exclaimed with a hearty laugh, throwing his head back. "Now pay attention, Natsu. This is what can happen if you don't take a dragon seriously."
Reaching down, Gildarts opened his cloak, putting his injuries on full display. Natsu had only managed to catch a few glimpses, but Gildarts was hurt far worse than he had initially thought. The Crush mage's arms and stomach were entirely covered in bandages, with several visible scars scattered across his chest. But what caught Natsu's attention the most were the crude wooden prosthetics that replaced Gildarts' left arm and leg.
"Holy fuck..." Natsu breathed out as he stared at Gildarts in shock. "How the hell did you survive?"
"By running for my damn life..." Gildarts bluntly stated, closing his cloak back up. "Everything happened in an instant. He got my left arm and leg, and few internal organs too. I don't know about Igneel or Valinor...but that black dragon is surely an enemy of humanity...and I hate to say this...but a human can't beat him."
"But...but that's what dragon slayers are for!" Natsu exclaimed as he slammed an electrified fist onto a nearby table, causing part of it to splinter and break. "With my magic...the magic Igneel and Valinor taught me..."
"Natsu..." Gildarts muttered, giving the pink-haired dragon slayer a sympathetic look. "If you want to run out there and fight this dragon, I won't stop you. But if you do, you're going to die." Natsu's entire body stiffened when he heard this, Lucy, Erza, and Mirajane's faces flashing through his mind. "Take a moment and think about all the people you'll be leaving behind if you try and take on this dragon."
"I..." Natsu almost whispered as felt his hands begin to tremble slightly. Clenching his fists to steady himself, Natsu stood up and walked towards the door. "I...need some time to think..." Throwing the door open, Natsu saw that it was pouring rain outside. Unfazed by this, the pink-haired dragon slayer stepped out into the cold rain. "I'll see you back at home, Happy."
"Natsu..." Happy yelled, starting to run after the pink-haired dragon slayer, but stopped when the door was suddenly slammed shut. Staring up at the closed door, Happy released a light sigh. "Aye, sir..."
"Oi Happy..." Gildarts said as he walked over and crouched down next to the blue cat, gently patting him on the head. "Keep supporting Natsu, okay? Humans may not be able to beat that black dragon...but maybe another dragon can."
(Several Minutes Later: Streets of Magnolia)
"Damn it..." Natsu muttered, slowly walking through Magnolia, no particular destination in mind. The cold rain didn't bother Natsu, his naturally high body heat keeping him warm. "I want to go after that black dragon...but I can't take that risk...I can't just abandon Luce, Erza, and Mira." As people rushed past Natsu to find cover, he stopped and stared up at the gray sky overhead. "I wonder how my dad and big brother are doing..."
Releasing a light sigh, Natsu decided to head back home and get some sleep. However, he was stopped when a familiar scent coming from a nearby alley hit his nose. It was muddled a bit by the rain, but Natsu managed to pick up on it. Walking down in the alley, the pink-haired dragon slayer groaned when he saw Cana passed out with a bottle of wine in her hand. Without a second thought, Natsu placed Cana on his back, the brunette card mage shivering uncontrollably. But Cana's shivering slowly stopped as she held Natsu tightly, his body warming her up.
"Ugh, guess I'm taking you home..." Natsu said with a sigh as he changed course and began to make his way toward Fairy Hills. "Can't have you getting sick."
"Natshu...ish that you..." Cana slurred, leaning forward and resting her head on the pink-haired dragon slayer's shoulder. "What're you...doing here..."
"Your drunk ass passed out in an alley and I'm carrying you home." Natsu grumbled as he adjusted Cana's position on his back, causing her to groan softly at the sudden shift. "And don't you dare even think of puking on me."
"You're sho nishe Natsuuuuuuu..." Cana purred into his ear, her face flushing bright red. "I don't even mind that you're groping my ass right now."
"I-I'm not! I was just adjusting your position!" Natsu exclaimed, turning his head away from Cana's teasing gaze. "I would never take advantage of a drunk girl!"
"Suuuuuuuuuuuure...whatever you shay..." Cana teased as she poked Natsu's cheek, chuckling to herself. Releasing a light sigh, Cana returned to resting her head on Natsu's shoulder. "Lucy's sho lucky to have a nishe guy like you."
"H-Huh!?" Natsu yelled, stopping in his tracks and turning his head to look at Cana. "W-What are you talking about!?"
"I shaw you and Lucy kishing..." Cana slurred as she puckered her lips and made some fake kissing noises. "You two looked sho cute!" Seeing the worried look on Natsu's face, Cana laughed and playfully slapped him on the chest. "Don't worry big boy! I haven't told anyone else!"
"That doesn't make me feel much better..." Natsu grumbled, before continuing towards Fairy Hills. "Let's just get you home quick."
(Ten Minutes Later: Fairy Hills Dormitory)
"Man, I've never been in here..." Natsu said as he stared up at the large building in front of him. Glancing to his left, the pink-haired dragon slayer spotted a sign with big, bold letters on it. "No boys allowed, huh?"
"The dorm mother doeshn't like pervy boys..." Cana said, before her teeth began to chatter, a shiver running through her whole body. "Natshu hurry up...I'm getting really coooooold!"
"Just hang on a bit longer." Natsu said as he opened the dorm's front door and poked his head inside. Seeing that the lobby was empty, Natsu quickly darted into the building. "Cana, what floor do you live on?"
"Third floor...room 308..." Cana lazily replied, releasing a soft yawn. "The door should be unlocked."
"Okay, let's get you dried up and in bed." Natsu said as he found a stairwell, adjusting Cana's position once again and walking to her floor. Seeing that the hall was clear, Natsu began to search for Cana's room. Following the number on the doors, Natsu soon found Cana's room at the end of the hall. "This should be it."
However, the pink-haired dragon slayer stopped dead in his tracks when the door to the stairwell suddenly opened. Stepping into the hallway was dorm's current owner, Ruchio. The middle-aged woman looked like the most sterotyipical, uptight librarian Natsu could imagine. Natsu knew it'd be trouble if Ruchio saw him, so he quickly reached out and tried to open Cana's door. But his eyes widened in shock when the door ended up being locked. Frantically looking around, Natsu saw that the door to the room behind him was slightly ajar. So, without a second thought, Natsu dashed into the room. Quietly closing the door, Natsu stood and listened as Ruchio walked up and down the hallway. When her foots steps eventually faded, the pink-haired dragon slayer breathed a sigh of relief.
"What the hell, Cana!?" Natsu hissed, shooting the drunk brunette an annoyed glare. "I thought you said the door would be unlocked!"
"Ooooooopssssss...guessh I did lock the door after all..." Cana giggled as she reached down and patted her plump ass. "But I gots the key in my back pocket!"
"Whatever, it's fine..." Natsu said, releasing a heavy sigh. "Let's just get you into your own room. The last thing I need is for someone to see-"
"Natsu..." The pink-haired dragon slayer froze in place when he heard a familiar voice speak up from behind him. Slowly turning around, he saw Juvia staring at him in confusion. "What are you doing in Juvia's room...and why are carrying Cana-san?"
"J-Juvia! Sorry about barging in like this, I didn't know this was your room! I was just trying to hide from the dorm mother!" Natsu explained, before walking over and setting Cana down on a nearby couch. "And I was carrying Cana because I fond her passed out drunk on my way home. I didn't want her getting sick, so I decided to take her home."
"Oh, that's very nice of you, Natsu." Juvia said with a smile as walked over and sat down on the couch across from Cana. "It would have been terrible if Cana had fallen ill."
"Sooooo..." Natsu said, glancing around Juvia's room. To the pink-haired dragon slayer's surprise, her room was unexpectedly normal looking. It had a wooden ceiling complete with various carved portions, topping a wall that had two arched windows with both only a few inches away from the other. Both windows had double curtains, and they overlooked a shelf that had two flower pots on it. Flanking the wall left from the entrance was a four-poster bed with an intricately decorated headboard and a set of transparent curtains as well. Natsu frowned slightly when he saw a plushie that looked like a stylized Gray sitting on Juvia's bed. On the wall opposite to the bed was another bookshelf bearing several books, which had a different animal plushie hanging from it. Right beside the bookshelf was a desk, housing many more books and some stationery, paired with a chair that had an intricately decorated back, which also had a teddy bear leaning against one of its legs. Lastly, in the center of the room was a small, round wooden table, with a sofa and lounge chair sitting nearby. "This is your room, huh? It looks really nice."
"Thank you, Natsu..." Juvia said as a faint blush spread across her face. "Juvia has never had a boy in her room before, so this is a bit embarrassing."
"Oh! If I'm making you uncomfortable, I'll head out then." Natsu said, picking Cana bridal style, causing her to groan in annoyance at the sudden motion. "I should be getting Cana in bed anyways."
"No! No! Natsu isn't making Juvia feel uncomfortable at all!" Juvia exclaimed as she practically jumped out of her seat, waving her hands dismissively. "But Natsu is right, he should get Cana to bed soon." Walking over, Juvia opened the door to her room. "Before you go Natsu, Juvia just wanted to say that she enjoyed getting lunch with you. It was great catching up, we should do it again sometime."
"Of course!" Natsu said with a massive grin, before stepping out into the hallway. "See ya, Juvia!"
"Juvia will see you at the guild tomorrow, Natsu!" Juvia said as she waved to the pink-haired dragon slayer, watching as he pulled out the key and opened Cana's door. Once Natsu was out of sight, Juvia closed her own door and pressed her back against it. Juvia released a soft sigh as she clutched a hand over her racing heart. Slowly pushing off the door, Juvia walked over to her bed and sat down on the edge of it. Reaching behind her pillow, Juvia pulled out a small plushie she had hidden that looked like Natsu. Juvia grabbed her Gray plushie as well, setting both dolls down on her lap. After staring at the plushies for several moments, Juvia groaned in frustration and fell back onto her bed. "Ugh, why does Juvia's heart ache so much?"
(With Natsu: In Cana's Dorm Room)
"Alright, finally home!" Natsu exclaimed, walking into Cana's living room. The layout of the dorm was quite similar to Juvia's, just a bit messier. Tarot cards were strewn across her coffee table, and clothes and empty wine bottles were scattered on the floor. Her dorm room wasn't a pigsty, but it could use some light cleaning. Natsu quickly made his way over towards Cana's bed, gently laying her down on it. "You need to get out of those wet clothes. Can you change yourself, Cana?"
"Shtotally..." Cana replied in a half-drunk, half-asleep tone as she slowly sat up. Reaching back, Cana attempted to undo the tie of her bikini top but was failing spectacularly. After almost a minute of fumbling with the knot, Cana gave up and slammed her fist onto the bed. "H-How the fuck doesh this thing come off!? Natshu! Please, help me!"
"Good god, you are beyond smashed, Cana. How much did you drink?" Natsu asked, releasing a heavy sigh as he reached to untie Cana's top. However, he stopped when he realized what he was about to do. "Cana...are you sure you want me to do this? I could get Juvia? Or maybe try and find Erza-"
"NO! That'll take too long and I'm cold!" Cana whined as she whipped around to face Natsu, pouting a bit. But Cana's expression soon turned devious when she saw the flushed look on Natsu's face. "AAAAAAAAH! I see whatsh's going on!" With a teasing smile, Cana reached up and cupped her large breasts. "You're worried about sheeing these puppies aren't ya! Don't worry, I won't tell Lushy! Now hurry up!"
"That's not really the problem here..." Natsu thought, before finally accepting his fate and untying Cana's bikini top. Once the strings were undone, Natsu took a deep breath and pulled off Cana's top. Natsu tried his best to avoid staring at Cana's massive breasts, but her intoxicating tanned skin kept drawing in his gaze. Cana smirked when she saw Natsu ogling her impressive bust. Before the drunk card mage could tease him any further, Natsu quickly hopped off the bed and dashed over towards her dresser. "Clothes! Need clothes now! I don't know how much longer I can hold myself back!"
When Natsu whipped open the doors to the dresser, he frowned when he saw an array of bikini tops, no shirts anywhere to be seen. Groaning in frustration, Natsu began to dig through the drawers at the bottom of the dresser. He breathed a sigh of relief when he finally found a single worn-out blue t-shirt buried at bottom of the last drawer. After also grabbing a fresh pair of pants, Natsu made his way back over to the bed, trying to not stare at Cana's swaying breasts.
"Yay! Dry clothes!" Cana cheered as she clapped her hands together. Raising her arms into the arm, Cana allowed Natsu to slip on her t-shirt, finally covering up her tantalizing bust. Next, Natsu carefully pulled off Cana's shoes and wet pants, tossing them near her dresser. With a bit of struggling, Natsu managed to get Cana's pants on as well. Now dressed in a pair of dry clothes, Cana flopped onto her bed, burning her face into her pillow. "Sho much better!"
"Holy hell, I hate dealing with drunk girls..." Natsu thought, grabbing a glass from Cana's bathroom and filling it with water. After setting the glass of water down on the nightstand next to the bed, Natsu stood and observed Cana for a few moments. The brunette card mage was already passed out, snoring softly as she hugged her pillow. Despite her annoying, drunken behavior, Natsu couldn't help but marvel at how cute Cana looked when she was asleep. After drinking in her beautiful form for a few more moments, Natsu carefully tucked Cana underneath the covers. However, as Natsu turned to leave Cana's room, he was stopped by the sound of her shivering. Despite the dry clothes and blanket covering her, it seemed like Cana still was quite cold. Natsu glanced around the room for any extra blankets or coverings he could use to warm Cana up. Seeing nothing that he could use, Natsu released a light sigh and walked back over to the bed. "Everyone always says that I make a great heater." Crawling into the bed, the pink-haired dragon slayer laid down next to Cana. Almost instantly, Cana was drawn to Natsu's natural warmth and latched onto him, hugging his head in between her massive breasts. A small smile spread across Natsu's face as he closed his eyes. "I guess this isn't so bad. When you wake up tomorrow Cana, you're gonna tell me what the hell is going on with you."
And done! I felt like this was a good stopping point for now. I originally planned to write two more scenes, but that would have likely pushed this chapter past 12k+ words and I frankly didn't want to do that much. Don't worry, the next chapter will pick up immediately where this one left off and will have Natsu confronting Cana about her strange behavior. We may even see some sparks fly between them before the Edolas arc officially starts ;) So, I hope you look forward to that. Next, I'll be working on my Batman story, so you're all gonna have to wait a bit for the next new chapter. Remember to follow/favorite if you enjoyed, PLEASE REVIEW (I NEED YOUR FEEDBACK), check out my profile and other stories if you haven't already, and feel free to PM me any ideas you might have for my stories. So, until next time, I'm outta here!